Wednesday, August 29, 2012

REVIEW: Majolica Majorca's Eyes Reset Gel

One of the darlings in my August's Vanity Trove is Majolica Majorca's Eye Reset Gel. I was pretty excited to try this out because the last time I used a Majolica Majorca product was 2 years back. The brand is known for their fairy tale-themed makeup collections but skin care products(I do consider makeup removers as part of skin care.)? I haven't really heard much of it.

Just a quick recap, this is a gel-type remover that melts into oil for complete removal of eye makeup. The gel blends and binds with makeup with circular motions. In addition, the gel also helps to condition your eyelids so you can just wipe it away with tissue paper.

The gel comes in a black, opaque 30g squeeze tube. I like that hygiene is taken care of; I only touch the amount I need and not the rest of the product. This is the case for most makeup removers.

It is a pretty small tube and because you can just wipe it off without using water, it should come in handy when you find that your liner has given you panda eyes in the middle of the day (BUT I do have one gripe about it... Read on!).

To test the gel's makeup removing skills, I have Etude House's Precious Mineral BB Cream, eyeshadows from Urban Decay's Deluxe Shadow Box, K-Palette's 24H Real Lasting Eyeliner (Super Black) and Shiseido's Defining Volume Perfect Mascara on my arm. Without wetting your hands or face, squeeze a pea-sized amount of the gel and apply it in circular motions on your eyelids. As aforementioned, you can either clean it off with a piece of tissue or wash it off with water.

The gel requires quite a bit of blending/ rubbing in order to remove all eye makeup. I don't quite like this aspect of it because rubbing causes wrinkles. During the process of blending/ rubbing, some of the gel slips into my eye (For me, I ALWAYS remove my contact lenses first. Otherwise, I will wake up with a swollen eye on the next day.) and a lot of it actually gets onto the bottom of my eye. This means more rubbing and we all know that the skin on the bottom of our eyes is especially thin...

I have tried cleaning the gel off with a piece of tissue and washing it off with water. Both methods leave my eyelids feeling hydrated but it feels a tad greasy too, so I usually follow up with a cleanser.

Majolica Majorca probably made the Eyes Reset Gel for her waterproof mascaras. Unfortunately, I haven't got any of her mascaras to try this on. The gel does do a decent job in removing my everyday makeup but I don't quite like the too-much-rubbing bit. It is also a tad troublesome for makeup that can be removed easily but I think this will be splendid for those Japanese notorious-for-being-difficult-to-remove mascaras.

Monday, August 27, 2012

SPOTTED: Enavose's Juice Your Way to Fresher Skin Workshop‏

Hey ladies! Just a heads up... Swiss brand Enavose is exploring the axiom 'you are what you eat' with her Juice Your Way to Fresher Skin Workshop. At the workshop, you will be learning how to make concoctions oozing with skin goodness from antioxidants, minerals and vitamins! These drinks will help keep your skin hydrated and healthy and woes are kept at bay!

There are 2 slots for the workshop; on September 7th (From 6.30pm to 8.00pm.) and September 8th (From 11am to 12.30pm.). It's $60 for one person and $100 for a couple. These prices are fully redeemable for Enavose products and include a goodie bag (Worth $80!) and refreshments!

To sign up for the workshop, you can do it at Enavose stores or email Felicia at to register.

Click here to read all my entries on Enavose! :D

Sunday, August 26, 2012

REVIEW: Etude House's July Pink Box

Last month's Pink Box from Etude House was all about pore cleansing! I received the latest Wonder Pore products. This range cleans and takes care of your skin and pores by

1. Balancing your skin's ideal pH level.
2. Refining your skin tone.
3. Keeping the elasticity of pores.
4. Deep cleansing your pores.
5. Minimizing the appearance of your pores.
6. Controlling a large amount of your sebum production.
7. Moisturizing the skin both from the inside and outside.

Meet the new additions to the Wonder Pore family!

The Wonder Pore Special Set houses the Wonder Pore Whipping Foam and Wonder Pore Freshner. This duo prevents the production of excess sebum, the slackening of skin's elasticity, dehydration and the enlargement of pores.

The Wonder Pore Whipping Foam is a dual-use product; it can be used as a cleanser or a facial pack (mask). It 'supplies carbonated pore cleansing and moisturizing and tightening care'.

To use it as a cleanser: Shake the bottle before use. Pump out the foam and using either the facial brush provided or your hands, massage onto damped skin gently in circular motions. Rinse off with lukewarm water.

To use it as a facial pack: Shake the bottle before use. Pump out the foam and apply a generous amount to damped skin and leave on for 1 to 2 minutes. Massage gently in circular motions before washing it off with lukewarm water. Use it 1 to 2 times a week.

The foam dispensed was incredibly dense and 'firm', which fits the definition of 'perfect foam'. Foam reduces the friction and stress generated as a result of the skin on our palms rubbing against the skin of our face. And because the foam was so dense and 'firm', it was really fun washing my face! Probably my best foam experience! Haha. However, the foam did leave a too-clean-and-too-tight feeling after washing it off. It isn't good news for my drier skin now but I think oily skin will welcome it. (:

The Wonder Pore Freshner is a toner that suppresses demodex production and restore the pH balance of your skin. I'm not sure if I got this right but I think the demodex here refers to tiny parasitic mites that can be found living in or near hair follicles on our skin and they cause acne and other skin problems. This is the first time I am hearing about demodex and it scares me quite a bit. But yay for Etude House for taking care of it!

This toner is to be used after cleansing. Soak a cotton pad with the toner and just wipe your face with it, from the inside to the outside. Pat the toner in and let your skin soak up all its goodness.

Korean ladies are big on facial mists. Etude House recommends pouring a little of this Wonder Pore Freshner into a facial mist bottle so that you can carry it around and spray it on throughout the day!

The bottle was a bit of a puzzle to me initially because I have not seen such a nozzle (Okay, am I a country bumpkin?!?). All you need to do it to place your cotton pad on the top of the nozzle and press down. Pretty useful for a bottle so huge! The toner refreshes my skin and there is no stinging feeling. Do take note that there is alcohol in it, so it should not be used that frequently if you are going to use it as a facial mist as well.

Last but not least, the Wonder Pore Clay Clear. This mask is formulated with pure Glacial Clay and an oxygen-delivering 'Carbonated' ingredient. It deep cleanses your pores, removing dirt, oil and any impurities to reveal skin that is healthy and clean.

The clay is to be applied on the face with the spatula provided. Avoid the areas around the eye and mouth and leave the mask on for 15 to 20 minutes. Thereafter, wask it off with warm water. Use once or twice a week.

And here are the other items that came in my July Pink Box! :D

This Pink Candy Sweet Cake Fragrance is actually perfume in the form of cream! Dab a little on your wrist and you will be smelling sweet like a baby!

Here are swatches of CBE101 (Pastel yellow) and CBL601 (Pastel blue)! These nail polishes need at least 2 coats, otherwise they are a little streaky.

(And umm... Wanna guess whose nails those belong to?!? Haha!)

And the last item for the day... Etude House's Acetone Free Nail Remover (#3 Sensitive Nail) (I do think they mean 'Nail Polish Remover'.). This nail polish remover contains orange oil to care for weak nails.

This nail polish remover is pretty awesome. All I used were 2 cotton pads, 1/2 soaked with the remover, and I got all the nails clean! Usually, I have to use like 4?

This concludes my Etude House's July Pink Box! I'll be blogging about my Korea trip soon so keep a lookout for it! :D

P.S.: Giveaways are coming! :DDD

photos by Cheryl Julia.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

REVIEW: Lush's Aqua Marina

Angels on Bare Skin didn't really work miracles on my skin but it started a teeny-weeny (Yeah right!) obsession with Lush (I'm getting so many obsession nowadays. Heh heh.). Also, given that I'm so particular about my ingredients, Lush fits right into my 'ideal' skincare brand.

So anyway, I decided to go for the Aqua Marina after doing my 'research'. The Aqua Marina is a calming Calamine wash. Sensitive skin which get irritated by citrus or strong herbal oils will find salvation in this wash as it contains Aloe Vera and Nori Seaweed. This can help cool sun-burnt faces as well and it is made for the normal to dry skin types.

I got the smaller tub one which cost me $26.88. This lasts for only 3 months, so it doesn't make sense to buy the big tub unless you are using it for both your face and body. For me, this is a tad too expensive for my body. Haha. I use this strictly on my face only but I may have to slather it generously on my body soon...

Aqua Marina smells like a mixture of calamine lotion and seaweed... Obviously. Haha. But it leans more to the scent of seaweed. I don't find it pungent but neither do I love the scent. The pink paste feels gooey and again, I wish Lush did something about the packaging but nope, you need to dip your fingers into the tub to get the product. Do make sure your fingers are clean and dry before dipping to prevent contamination of any sorts.

After using this for two months plus... Hmm, I'm neutral towards it. It does make my skin soft and smooth but there are cheaper cleansers that do the same thing too. Heck, oats do that for my skin! Also, when you are applying the cleanser on your skin, it feels like you are applying a paste that's a tad oily. So I don't actually feel that my skin is clean after washing. But I haven't broken out during these 2 months, so I'm sure it cleans my skin but it just does not feel like it.

The Nori Seaweed makes a slight mess out of this cleanser but I like that it provides a little gentle exfoliation. (: It breaks down into soft little bits so I doubt it will clog drains (Unlike the Lavender bits in Angels on Bare Skin.). Well, my drain has not been clogged in the past two months anyway... *Keeping fingers crossed*

Just like Angels on Bare Skin, I didn't see any miracles. But I'm guessing that these 2 cleansers will only make a noticeable difference if you started out with very bad skin. If your skin is okay, you won't be able to see anything. They just cleanse and that's it. There is no brightening, tightening or whitening effect. I still get my zits every now and then. They don't heal any faster and still leave marks. And my skin still becomes dry after cleansing.

I do prefer the Aqua Marina to Angels on Bare Skin though. Even though Aqua Marina doesn't make my face feel clean, I feel like I'm washing my face with a moisturizer and that is good to me. After dabbling in various brands and reading up on tons of reviews, I'm starting to think that good skin just means LOTS of moisturizing. Even if your skin is of the oily type, pick an appropriate moisturizer and just go crazy with it at night!

I consider the 2 aforementioned cleansers 'misses' but I'm still not giving up on Lush. I have been using Ocean Salt several times a week and am liking it quite a bit. But that's another story for another time. So till then, xx!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

SPOTTED: Travelling the world with Pandora

After my first encounter with Pandora here, I have been a little obsessed with the brand. Heh. Anyway, when I was in Sydney, I was looking everywhere for a charm that well, screams 'Sydney'. I wanted to create a bracelet of the places that I will be visiting (An affirmative statement.).

Unfortunately, I didn't find an Opera House or a Sydney Harbour Bridge in Pandora BUT Pandora does have intricate charms of iconic symbols from Berlin, Barcelona, London, New York, Paris and Rome!

These charms form the National Icons Collection and are retailing in Singapore at $76 each.

And before I call it a day, here's a sneak preview of the upcoming Autumn Collection from Pandora!

The collection will be out in September. Keep watch! (:

Monday, August 20, 2012

SPOTTED: LEADERS InSolution's Mailer

Hey ladies, just a quick heads up! Our beloved Watsons will be having their Member Preview Sale this Wednesday, on August 22nd. Woot! :D

Leaders InSolution will be participating in this sale by having a 20% + 5% off on all their products! Time to stock up on masks (I love the Aloe Soothing one! :D Click here to read more about Leaders InSolution's masks.)!

Here is the list of participating Watsons' outlets:

Ngee Ann City #B2-06-10
United Square #B1-53
Orchard Centerpoint #B1-107/110
Orchard Forum Galleria #B1-20/21
Marina Bay Financial Centre #B2-57/58/59
Telok Ayer Street #208 Telok Ayer Street
City Square Mall #02-42/43
Anchorpoint #B1-23
Sun Plaza #01-32/33/42/43
Beauty World Centre #B1-11/12
West Mall Plaza #02-26/27
Choa Chu Kang Lot 1 #02-07
Yew Tee Point #B1-14/15
Serangoon Garden #NO. 2 Kensington Park Road
Bedok Point #02-18
Tampinese Mart #01-18

Take note that the ongoing promotion (20% off Hydrogel Eye Therapy Patch and Pore Clinic Care 2Step Kit) ends on August 29th!

And for (fellow. Haha. I'm loving the new Singapore-Korean girl group, Skarf 스카프!) K-Pop lovers, simply spend a minimum of $30 on Leaders InSolution products in a single receipt and stand a chance to win a pair of tickets to 'Big Band's Alive Tour Singapore 2012'!

You know what to do on Wednesday! *winks*

HAUL: Pandora's Mother and Daughter

Sydney was my first trip in close to 4 years. Hence, I was and am still very excited about it. Haha. During the trip, I wanted to get something special for my family and found myself wandering around (dangerously) Pandora in Queen Victoria Building.

I was giving the charms a perfunctory glance when something ruby caught my eye. It was like pomegranate seeds. And when I saw the words etched in the hearts of them, I knew that these would be more than perfect for Mum (And well, me. Heh!). (:

Sunday, August 19, 2012

FOOD: Two Chefs Eating Place

Last Tuesday, I met up with my junior college bud, Henry, for dinner. In an attempt to avoid patronizing the usual places, I suggested Two Chefs Eating Place. I visited this zi char store back in late May and I cannot, for the life of me, stop thinking about the Butter Ribs!

But you know... Such places are usually warm and sweaty and I NEED artificial cold air 24/7 so, it has taken me this long to find my way back home there.

Two Chefs Eating Place is a bus stop away from Commonwealth Station (Take buses 93, 105, 123, 153, 186, 855, 961.). Look out for Block 116 after you have alighted! (:

The dishes come in 3 different portions and prices are pretty student-friendly!

Golden Mushroom Tofu is, well, a couple of golden mushrooms and tofu. I didn't enjoy this dish very much as the sauce was a tad too watery and the whole thing was too soggy for me. It was a very 'normal' dish.

The Cereal Prawns were definitely tastier. The cereal was crisp and prawns were big and juicy. But it seems like I'm still on my chili craving. I thought the taste would not be so 1-dimensional if dish had some bits of chili in it. Sure the curry leaves were there and it was like you were on the edge of tasting some spiciness but then, you were not. It was a bit of a 'cheating your feelings' kind of thing, if you get me. :\

Last but not least, the Butter Ribs! THIS was the reason why I would brave the heat, endure beads of perspiration running down my back and tolerate the constant buzzing of this (stupid) housefly at my table. One might be afraid that the dish would be too buttery but fear not! The marinated ribs balanced out the dish out. And can I say that the butter powder was INCREDIBLY yummy! Towards the end of the dinner, I was just attempting to get every single bit of the powder into my mouth while Henry talked about school. Haha. And I like very much that the ribs were boneless! (I'll only be unglam with my food in the comfort of my own home.).

This was my second time at Two Chefs Eating Place. I can't quite remember what I had the other time but I do think that the other dishes are pretty 'normal'. BUT the Butter Ribs are worth the heat, the perspiration, the journey (For the East-siders.) and all the negatives in the world! Haha. But seriously, it is worth making a trip down. (:

Blk 116 Commonwealth Drive
#01-129, (S)140116
Tel.: +65 6472 5361

Friday, August 17, 2012

REVIEW: Nip + Fab's Dry Hand Fix and Dry Leg Fix

In June, I attended Nip + Fab's official press launch (Read about the event here.) and was given tubes of the Dry Hand Fix and Dry Leg Fix.

Since coming back from winterland Sydney, I have been peeling on my arms and legs like a snake. Three weeks ago, I started slathering these babies on every night, without fail.

(Okay, so I got lazy on one or two days. But that's all. I swear. *guilty smile*)

Just a recap, the Dry Hand Fix is a hand cream of natural oils and amino acids that intensively hydrates and brightens the skin. It contains Aquaxyl, which 'boasts scientifically substantiated benefits to improve the water reserves in the skin, limit water loss and visually improve the surface of the skin'.

The cream is housed in a 75ml tube. You twist the cap to reveal a nozzle, from which you can squeeze the cream out from. The moment the cap is removed, you are hit by a rather strong scent/ smell of coconuts. I don't like coconuts but I'm pretty tolerant to smells. The smell (I'm just going to use 'smell' because that is what it is to me. Haha.) doesn't stay strong (Unfortunately, you still smell it if you press nose against your skin.) but it is a tad 'embarrassing' when you whip the tube out on the train and the smell wafts everywhere. :\

The cream goes on light and it feels like there is a layer of fresh water on my skin as I apply it. It sinks into the skin quickly and easily and there is no remaining oily residue. The skin feels nicely hydrated but I do not notice any brightening effect. After 3 weeks of almost-daily applications, my arms have stopped peeling and even the rough skin on my elbows is becoming history. (:

The Dry Leg Fix also contains the aforementioned Aquaxyl to banish dry and flaky skin and make way for silky smooth legs. It also contains Shea Butter and Glycerin to up the moisture level, elasticity and softness of the skin.

The instant leg smoother comes in a 100ml tube. You flip the cap open to reveal a nozzle. I prefer this cap to the previous one because... Well, flipping the cap open is just so much more convenient for a lazy person! Thankfully, the smoother does not smell like coconuts at all! Instead, it has a fresh, light scent... A little like how hotels smell like, which I love quite a bit (Sometimes, I just use this for my hands. When the coconut smell gets too much.)!

The smoother feels lighter than the cream and it seems to absorb just a tad faster. Just like the cream, it feels like fresh water is on your skin when I slather it on. It is absorbed by the skin quickly. My legs no longer look 'scaly' and feel well-hydrated.

As aforementioned, sometimes I will apply the Dry Leg Fix on my hands instead because I like its scent better. Haha. Both products do a splendid job in hydrating the skin but the different ingredients in the 2 fixes don't seem to produce different effects. A quick search on Google came up with nothing regarding the difference in skins on our hands and legs. So both are equivalent to me. I will repurchase the Dry Leg Fix and not the other... Yes, it's because of the scent and also, I find that the Dry Leg Fix is lighter. And a light moisturizer is what I want to go for in scorching and humid Singapore.

Nip + Fab's Dry Hand Fix and Dry Leg Fix can be found in Watsons at $15.90 each.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

MAIL: August's Bellabox

This month's Bellabox landed on my laps yesterday evening. I was pretty excited to get it because Yvette received an Anna Sui eyeshadow in hers. But alas, it was not meant to be mine! Nevertheless,I'm still pretty satisfied with my box (Though I don't think it justifies the increase in price...).

Facial Fresh's Aloe Vera Treatment Mask soothes, rejuvenates and protects, leaving the skin silky soft all day. The instant cooling effect will calm irritated and sensitive skin. The cloth mask sits in a precise dose of fresh concentrated serum of clinically-proven antioxidants, vitamins and botanical extracts.
Facial Fresh Treatment Mask (Aloe Vera) at $8.95.

Enavose makes another appearance with its Probiotics Exfoliance Gommage. This gommage, which is a highly effective and gentle form of exfoliation (Read more about it here.), is formulated with a mild enzyme called Bacillus Ferment. It removes dead skin without causing stress to the skin through its resurfacing action, leaving the skin softer and smoother. It also helps in the absorption of your serums and moisturizers.
Enavose's Probiotics Exfoliance Gommage, 80ml at $35.

China Glaze also makes her second appearance with Wizard of Ooh Ahz Collection's Ruby Pumps. This is one of my favourite nail polish and I'm 3/4 into my current bottle so I'm real glad for this!
China Glaze's nail polishes, 15ml at $15.

Benefit's Porefessional is a balm that helps minimize the appearance of pores. Translucent and oil-free, it can be worn alone, under or over makeup.
Benefit's Porefessional, 22ml at $48.

L'Oreal Paris' Dermo-Expertise Youth Code Boosting Essence smooths and softens yours skin with just one drop. It also aids in the absorption of serums and moisturizers. In just a month, you can expect to see skin that's rejuvenated, youthful and radiant.
L'oreal Paris' Dermo-Expertise Youth Code Boosting Essence, 30ml for $39.90.

Elizabeth Arden's Visible Difference Skincare is 'a spa-inspired, regimen-focused essential skincare line that helps balance skin to reveal its natural health and radiance'. I was given sachets of the Skin Balancing Exfoliating Cleanser, Optimizing Skin Serum and Skin Balancing Lotion (Sunscreen SPF15).
Elizabeth Arden's Skin Balancing Regimen for Combination Skin from $42 to $96.

Instead of the usual ballet pink box that the samples come in, this time round they came in a 'I Love Singapore'-inspired beach bag. The beach bag is cute but I do wish that the drawstring bag makes a comeback. It proves to be extremely useful for travels. (:

Anyway, I don't know about you but it is always 'nerve-wrecking' getting my Bellabox. When friends start tweeting and instagram-ing their boxes, I'm like 'Where's mine? Where's my shipping info?!?'. Haha. I guess the element of surprise that the box brings makes me just that little weeny bit anxious (Little weeny? Really, Charlene?). Haha.

I think it would be good if Bellabox just updates our membership accounts with our shipping information, so we can just log in and check whenever we want. Makes sense? Or maybe I'm just being really fussy... But yep, my two cents' worth. Have a Toasty Thursday!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

FOOD: Canton-i

M and I love Chinese cuisine to death. Well, that and Aglio Olio. Anyway, after being away from Singapore for close to a month, I was craving for Chinese food so. Friggin'. Badly. I was telling M that my stomach NEEDS Chinese food. Not want, but NEED. Desperately! So last Saturday, we found ourselves on the 3rd floor of ION Orchard, right in front of Canton-i.

Canton-i seeks to be a gourmet paradise through its meticulous attention towards the flavours, textures and presentations of its dishes. Renowned chefs hailing from Hong Kong and Guangzhou are invited to whip up a variety of authentic Hong Kong dishes so that we get the true taste of Hong Kong in our very own country.

The restaurant was decked out in Chinese decor that could have been rather ostentatious. But the pink and white floral lace made the whole place look tasteful instead and not the least bit gimmicky. (:

Prices for the Dim Sum were normal. Unfortunately, the two of us were pretty jaded from little bites (And still are.) so we ordered dishes instead and prices were on the high side (Higher than that of Asian Kitchen's.).

(Anyway, I thought the plate looked very cute. Hence, the random photo of a plate above.)

The meat dishes comes in various portions; small, half or whole. If you are fickle (Like the 2 of us. Haha.), you can pick combinations of 2 or 3 meat dishes from choices of Honey-glazed BBQ Pork, Roasted Pork Belly, Soya Sauce Chicken or Roasted Chicken.

The small portion was not available when we were there so we ended up picking plate of Honey-glazed BBQ Pork and Soya Sauce Chicken ($22.90). The Honey-glazed BBQ Pork had the delicious burnt smell though, of course, the meat was not charred. The meat, however, was too soft and felt like jelly to me. I prefer harder, lean meat. M, on the other hand, loved how soft it was and couldn't stop going on about how tasty it was. Haha. So there you go... Two conflicting opinions! Haha.

Both of us agreed that the Soya Sauce Chicken tasted too normal and bland for a rather steep price ($14.80 for half a chicken and $26.80 for the whole chicken.).

I love Four Season Beans so this plate ($18.80) was top on our order! We were both a little disappointed when it came without chili, though M commented that Cantonese dishes are usually not spicy (Is this true?!?). The beans had the burnt smell (And yes, they were definitely not charred. Just the yummy smell!) but I felt it lacked the 'kick' that chili would have provided (Spoken like a true Singaporean, no? Haha. I can't really handle spicy stuff actually!). We both really liked the minced meat bits! I believe that I can just have that and rice and be satisfied. *nods*

Last but not least, we had a plate of prawns steeped in salted egg yolk ($28.80). The prawn oozed with the salted egg yolk with each bite and it was pretty delish BUT I still felt that it was lacking the 'kick'. I'm all about 'kicks' in food. Haha! I just thought it would have been a lot better with chili. Haha.

Our bill came up to $85.96 ($42.85 per person. Haha. The receipt actually said 'Sales Per PAX: $42.85' at the bottom. Save all the mental sums!). A bowl of rice is priced at $1.20 and a glass of water is $0.50. It was a rather pricey meal for two (poor) students but it was pretty decent. I'm a little more critical because of my crazy thirst for chili that day. But this would be a good place for those who eschew spicy stuff. (:

Dorcas mentioned that the XO Carrot Cake was to die-for but I only saw her comment after I left the place... Haha. I won't go back there for the dishes but I would probably give their Dim Sum a shot soon. (:

2 Orchard Turn
#03-14 ION Orchard, (S)238801
Tel.: +65 6509 8368
© xoxo, charlene. All rights reserved.
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