Tuesday, July 26, 2011

2011 Half Year Favorites

I'm trying to catch up with a lot of my posts. This one is a little late but better late than never--right?

As I did last year, I'm doing half-year favorites. I know that many bloggers do monthly favorites but I don't think that I could manage doing a post like that every month.

What I haven't included are my staples. Since they are my staples, it's pretty much understood that those would be favorites. I'll list my staples but no picture: K-Palette Real Lasting Eyeliner, NARS Orgasm blush, Mezaik Double Eyelid Stretch Fiber, Neutrogena Makeup Remover Towelettes, Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion and Noevir Raysela Sunscreen.

Hair Care:

Neuma Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner and Alterna Bamboo Luminous Shine Shampoo and Conditioner. I had been using both but preferred the Neuma Line before I cut my hair. My hair was pretty damaged so it was helpful in taming down the frizzies and providing much needed moisture to my dry, damaged hair. This line includes using Argan Treatment and Moisture Cream. I would alternate with Alterna because it would help to give my hair some volume. Now that I have cut my hair into a shorter length, I prefer having more volume with this style and I also cut off most of the damaged hair so I pretty much stick with the Alterna line. This line includes Dry Kendi Oil Mist and Brilliance Cream. I love the scent too! Pictured here is the travel size bottles

Skin Care:

Three of these items were gifts--Mannan Peeling Gel, Naive Aloe Foaming Face Wash and Face Q Mask. The fourth item is Shiseido Bio-Performance Super Corrective Serum.

Mannan Peeling Gel really makes my face feel nice and smooth. It's a great exfoliating gel and following up with a mask is a perfect combination. Naive Aloe Foaming Face Wash is one of those face washes that don't make my skin feel really taut after washing. It smoothes out my skin and feels great. I got two different "flavors" of Face Q mask. I used one and loved it! I recently put in an order with Sasa, which will arrive soon. Since I put in an order with Sasa, I guess that I don't have to hoard this one mask any more. Shiseido Bio-Perfomance Super Corrective Serum has collagen in it. I think that it makes my skin feel nice and hydrated and seems to really smooth out my skin. I'm going to have to purchase a full-sized bottle of this when I use up on of the other serums that I using now.


Featured in this picture are brushes all from Sonia Kashuk. Thanks to K of cosmeddicted, I discovered this line of brushes. It's pricing is mid-range if you compare it between e.l.f. and MAC. It has really nice quality and I'm thinking of adding to my collection. (This isn't all of the brushes that I have from SK but I didn't include the few others that I have.)


Most of these were acquired either at the end of last year or within the first half of this year. Pictured above is Missha BB Boomer, Hada Labo BB Cream (gift), Lise Watier Concealer Wheel (gift), Dermablend Cover Creme, Puff de Cheek blush (gift), Meteorite Peals in Teint Rose 01, Physician's Formula Eye Booster, Maquillage Face Creator (I have two different ones although only 1 is pictured), and Visee Brilliance Forming Eyes A-1 (gift). As you can see, just about half of these were gifts.

Missha BB Boomer is a really nice primer and relatively inexpensive too. Hada Labo BB Moist Cream--I love, love, love this BB cream! It's hydrating and provides excellent coverage. Lise Watier Concealer Wheel has different concealers for different problem areas. I was so glad that this works out nicely in covering some of my stubborn dark spots. Dermablend Cover Creme is a heavy duty concealer and works well in covering my stubborn dark spots. Puff de Cheek is a blush that I'm really liking. It's not too heavily pigmented, which is good because I have a heavy hand and the color can be built up nicely. I actually bought Meteorite Pearls at least a year ago only because I thought that it was so pretty. Only recently have I started using powder to set my foundations again and find that is a fine powder and doesn't seem to settle into and bring out fine lines. Maquillage Face Creator is really a nice product that helps to subtly sculpt your face and bring out your cheekbones for when you want more definition. Physician's Formula Eye Booster. I actually have two of these, one in black and one in clear. It's an eyeliner pen but has lash-boosting ingredients which help your eyelashes become fuller and longer. I prefer the clear since I can put it on at night before I go to sleep (if I remember). The black one I would use during the day as an eyeliner but really do prefer my K-Palette. Visee Brilliance Forming Eyes has been a palette that I had been reaching for often lately. A nice neutral palette. I feel that the colors run on the cooler side, which works out better for my skin tone. (Warmer brown colors tend to make me look tired.)


I know that this sounds a little weird to be putting in this post but there's a connection to beauty and health. These are Sketchers Shape-Ups. If you don't know what Shape-Ups are, they are shoes that have a curved bottom. The purpose for this is to burn more calories, tone muscles and improve posture.  It is also supposed to improve posture, improve circulation, reduce joint stress, strengthen the back, firm buttock muscles, tone and firm thigh muscles, firm calf muscles. Sounds too good to be true, right? I started wearing these shoes almost 3 years ago. At first it felt strange but I got used to it and it did seem to help a bit with toning my muscles. Of course over the past 3 years, the shoes have been replaced as I use them every day at work and I don't sit unless I'm driving. With the last pair that I got, my feet started hurting, especially my ankles and heels. At first it would happen when I woke up in the mornings and then it started after I got home and took the shoes off. (The pain isn't a constant pain, only after I've not been on my feet and then I get up to walk--perhaps the beginnings of plantar fasciitis?) What I didn't realize (and it could be something that was released after I first started wearing them) is that there are extended fitness shoes in which it is designed for those who are on their feet for long periods of time. I believe that the bottom of the shoe is less tall. Well, at the beginning of this month, I decided to switch back to regular athletic shoes. My feet hurt less after getting home and waking up in the morning, so I was pretty satisfied with the switch--until yesterday. Over the course of the last week, I've noticed that my weight seemed to be picking up, which actually is a bit normal for me during the summers. Yesterday, I had trouble getting my jeans on and it really bothered me and made me start wondering why because I haven't been eating much and I had been doing a bit more walking. The most noticeable was that it was tight in the thigh and abdomen areas. It then dawned on me that the only real change that I made recently is to stop wearing the Shape Ups and that perhaps it was really working more than I thought. I decided that I needed to go and get me a pair of the extended fitness shoes, which is what is pictured above. I'm hoping that I won't have the pain problems that I was having with the regular Shape Ups. I guess that even if I do, it'll still be better than me being less toned. Although I purchased these new shoes just yesterday, which would make it fall into the 2nd half of 2011, I put it into this post because I had been using Shape Ups from way earlier.

I hope that you found this interesting. Next post will probably be half-year disappointments.



Denysia said...

I have yet to pick up the Sonia Kashuk brushes, but I know that they recently had a sale and they discounted the brushes for very cheap. I went to my local target, but I couldn't find the brush set. Maybe next time, I will pick some up! :)

Anonymous said...

Hello Kat
I like your favorites, incl. shoes. :) First of all, I am a huge fan of BB creams (although I am not an Asian). Since I discovered BB creams 2 years ago, I've been using them almost every day. My current favorite BB creams are Sunkiller SPF 50 BB cream (actually lotion), Missha Perfect Cover BB cream #23, and L'egere Multi Whitening BB cream. I would like and I will try Nanoce BB (cream or essence) and HadaLabo BB since I read so many great reviews. Second, I love tennis shoes, and currently I wear a NB pair (New Balance, because they are authentic American shoes, I like the style, and they are so comfortable, which is important to me).

Btw I really love your posts, and enjoy reading your blog.


Steph said...

YAYYYY!!! half year faves =D
I was looking for FaceQ masks in HK... but none of the stores carry them, not even sasa... =[ might have to make an order =[

i'm also gonna be looking for the SK brushes when i cross the boarder =D

i love the coral ish theme you have with the make up =D

even though i don't wear running shoes, shape ups sound good =D

galpal.hi said...

@Denysia--*GASP!* There was a sale?! Where?! I know that it's difficult to find even at my local Target--it seems to be out of stock a lot. If you want, I can check my store to see if they have the brush set that you want. Please let me know which one it is.


galpal.hi said...

@Sandy--Thank you for your lovely comment and for reading this blog. Thank you also for sharing some of your favorites. My husband wears New Balance shoes too. He plays tennis and it's pretty much the only brand that has wide width shoes.

If you can, will you please email me so that I can get your email address. There's something that I'd like to ask you. Email address is at the top right of the page, or you can click the "Contact" button. Thank you!


galpal.hi said...

@Steph--I had to wait for Sasa to get it back in stock. If it's out of stock, be sure to click to get an email notification when it does go back in stock. I think that this brand is getting to be quite popular.


Nic Nic said...

wow I'm really glad that Hado Labo BB cream made it to your list! Thanks to your rave I actually like a lot!! it's great for summer :D I'm glad I gave it another try.. Ohh I want to have those trainers like that!! I think might try and get myself a pair :D Sonia Kushuk is one of fave brushes to you- thanks to you!

coffretgorge said...

nice list Kat! im so happy you like the MajoMajo blush that much to make it on your mid-year favorites! :)

you got me curious about that concealer wheel! i know it was a gift, but do you know where to get them? >:)

Brianna said...

I've always been curious about those toning shoes, now I want to try some out myself!
I actually got the SK multi purpose brush because of you and K, its so great!

tiffyama said...

Great post, Kathy! :D I haven't tried any of these products before...but I've heard quite a few things about some of them. ^^

Ooh, shape ups! I've always wondered how those worked.

galpal.hi said...

@Nic Nic--Thank you again for the Hada Labo BB Cream. It really is an HG item for me. I've been using the Nanoce one regularly for now as I want to use it up first. Nanoce is a close 2nd. The color is just a little too yellow for my liking.


galpal.hi said...

@coffretgorge--I love the MajoMajo blush! Thank you again for the sweet gift!

The concealer wheel by Lise Watier is a Canadian product. It was part of my blogger Secret Santa gift that I received from Sheila.


galpal.hi said...

@Brianna--Wore the extended fitness pair today and so far my feet/ankles/heels have been okay. Feel some tightness in my calves so that just goes to show that it did work.

Glad that K and I were enablers. Hehe!


galpal.hi said...

@Tiffyama--There are two thoughts on the Shape-ups, some people say it's just hype while others say that it really works. After not using it for 3 weeks and seeing what's been happening with my body, it's the only thing that I've done differently so I think that it does work.


Yumeko said...

i like the brushes from SK too! they have a few interesting ones like the angled liner which i like

and those shoes..my father in law owns similar ones called mbt and he really thinks they help with his knees etc [he has a bad back]

i dont have skechers but i have a pair of reebok easytones and damm after walking in them for 30mins, my behind really hurts XD

astrorainfall @ beauty box said...

That's really interesting....the shape ups....it's my first time hearing about shoes that can help you burn more and take stress off your joints....maybe I should look into them because I have a troubled ankle that I can walk and exercise with but I think I need more support....so I can do more intense stuff like running...i miss running....

galpal.hi said...

@Yumeko--MBT shoes are really expensive! They have the same design concept although I can't compare the two since I haven't tried MBT.

I have seen the easytones but haven't tried them. Many companies are now coming out with their own line of fitness shoes. I'm sure that all of them must work.


galpal.hi said...

@Yuming--Many shoe companies have come out with their own line of fitness shoes. You should be able to find something that will work for you. Even Sketchers has Shape-Ups that are designed for running, so that would be better for you than what I am currently using.

Sorry to hear that your ankle is still bothering you since you sprained it a while back. Unfortunately, I've heard that it's actually better to break your ankle than to sprain it because with a sprain, it's something that stays and becomes chronic. I hope that this isn't the case for you.


K said...

I decided to skip my half year favorites this year because last year, my 2010 favorites was almost the same as my Jan-Jul favorites... Oh well!

You are so sweet to mention me in this post! I should say you are the enabler, since you sent me two of the three SK brushes I own!

I'm also loving your staples as well. I've been meaning to buy NARS Orgasm for YEARS and never have!

galpal.hi said...

@K--I think that as time goes on, it will start getting harder and harder to find new things that I can add to my favorites list.