Sunday, November 6, 2016

Nordstrom Fall 2016 Beauty Trend Show

Thanks to Mai's planning for something to do to celebrate my birthday (which was last month), we were able to attend this year's Nordstrom Fall Trend Show.

She arranged appointments for us to do Kate Somerville's HydraQuench Oxygen treatment, which was a real treat in more ways than one.

Kate Somerville is renown for her work with many celebrities. This complimentary treatment is actually a $270.00 value! Mai had actually gotten one done earlier in the week on Sunday, at the start of Beauty Trend Week. She enjoyed it so much that she was able to get it again. The young man who did her treatment was Sheldon and she highly recommends him. She made sure that my treatment was done by him.

After cleansing your face, the oxygen therapy is done and then some product is applied to your skin and massaged in. 

The massage felt really nice and being worked on by a cute guy was a bonus. Shhh!   :)

One hint that was given to us by Justine of Kate Somerville counter was to not sweat or get your face wet until the next day. This will allow the treatment to really work into your skin and reap the benefits. Even if you do put makeup on, then remove using makeup wipes and mist or pat on toner before going to sleep, just do not wash until the next morning. 

Next we went over to MAC to get our makeup done. Mai had actually made all of our arrangements for the day with Pie of Mac. We were fortunate enough to meet her that day and have our faces done by this beautiful and awesome young woman.We kind of let her decide and be creative on what colors to use.

She spent at least an hour on each of us and was so much fun. Mai and I commented that we think we've finally found another Beauty Advisor that we really like. We are looking forward to going back to visit and work with her. If you are ever in Hawaii and looking to try something new and exciting, we highly recommend Pie Chun, Beauty Advisor for MAC Cosmetics at Nordstrom Ala Moana.

We are looking foward to seeing Pie again and testing out other skin care lines and try out other MAC eye looks.


Friday, November 4, 2016

Purchase Review: Kanebo Evita Beauty Whip Soap

A couple of months ago, someone that I know from a different group had put out a request asking if anyone knew where to purchase the Kanebo Evita Beauty Whip Soap. While researching it, I found that it was probably not released yet. Since I was going to Japan, I offered to pick it up for her since it looked very interesting to me. 

It is a light, whipped soap which when you press down the two sides, the foam comes up in the shape of a rose. It is also rose scented. I was afraid that it would be strongly scented but fortunately it is very lightly fragranced and is quite pleasant. I was told not press down evenly but lightly. If pressed too hard, too much product would come out and it would be a waste.

I was able to find this in a department store. The total price was 1375.92 yen (1274 + 101.92 tax), which I felt was relatively reasonable. I think that this might be an limited edition item because I can't seem to find it online except at gouged prices on ebay. Even Amazon Japan has very limited listings but at a much higher price. I believe that Sheila from Maddy Loves was able to pick this item up last week in Japan but it was by luck that she found it. 

It is a nice cleansing foam. Very light, lightly scented and doesn't leave my face feeling too squeaky clean and stripped. It is a nice novelty item to have and I do like it enough that I would purchase again if able to.

EDIT: I discovered that there is much more information out there than when I looked for it a couple of months ago. This product is designed for women with mature skin although it is very popular with all skin types just because it is so innovative and cute. Main ingredients are royal jelly extract, soluble collagen, two types of hyaluronic acid, sake and rosewater. These are key ingredients providing anti ageing properties and prevents dryness. 

I still don't know if it's a limited edition item or if it's just super popular that demand is higher than supply. It's difficult to find in Japan.


Thursday, November 3, 2016


It's been a long time since I last blogged. I'm not even sure if anyone checks back here to see if I've written any updates. During this past year or so, I've done some reflecting on whether or not to continue writing. Another blogger had written a post about a year ago asking why do we blog? Is it to please others and that determines our content? Is it still personally satisfying? As I pondered this, I realized that I had kind of deviated from my original intent of blogging, which was originally set up as a way for Mai to see what I've been doing and trying out since at that time, we were not able to get together as much. However blogging changed to one based on trying to be honest about my feelings of products while trying not to do many haul posts because I didn't want to appear as if I was being a braggart saying, "See what I bought and how much I spent."

So why do I blog? It's definitely not to show off what I've bought and how much I've spent. It's mainly to keep a personal record of what I have bought and liked and/or disliked. I have often gone back to reading past posts of something that I tried to see if it was worth repurchasing or not. Some items I could not remember what my thoughts on it were. If in the process of writing these posts, readers find it helpful to them too, then that is an added bonus for me.  With this in mind, as I continue to blog, I will now not hold back on not posting about items that I've purchased or received as gifts. Granted, most things that I purchase are not expensive, high end items but there may be one or two of those from time to time.

I may also throw in posts that are not beauty related. I will also not stress about making sure that I have so many posts a week or month. I'll write when I feel inspired and have time. Real life has gotten busy and with the holidays ahead, it will continue to get busier. 

I hope that all has been well with everyone.


Monday, November 23, 2015

Product Review: Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment Sunscreen SPF 15

My personal preference for lipsticks is for it to be sheer and moisturizing. I really like those with a lip balm feel to it and one of my favorite drugstore brands has been long discontinued. 

I'm really late to the Fresh bandwagon. I have only used their soy face wash in the past. Recently I decided to pick up the special mini trio that was only $28.00. There were 3 different colors, Nude, Rose and Honey. It comes in a really nice tin container which has a mirror on the inside cover. I'm already thinking of using the tin as a magnetic palette. It's a nice and compact size and I can layer 2 or 3 layers inside. I may actually have it replace the current tin that I'm using, although that one has sentimental value for me.

The back of the cardboard cover which lists specifics:

The lipstick tubes are tightly packed inside.

Colors and Swatches on a paper towel:

I absolutely am in love with this line! My absolute favorite is Rose. It comes off as a MLBB color. Honey is a little too warm for me so I gave it to Mai and she loves it. Nude is too pale for me but is perfect for wearing at home as a lip balm, which I often wear at home anyway. In recent month, my lips have become dry so I find myself reaching for a lip balm more often now. 

This line has colors that are sheer and some colors that are more bold. At this point in time, I would honestly love to replace all of my lipsticks with this line. A month or so from now I may find some other line that I will really appeal to me but for now, these lipsticks fit my personal preference for a lipstick. I will admit that I did go back and buy a full-sized tube in a different color. I'm not loving the color as much as it is a much brighter pink than I wanted but it's still wearable, especially with the holidays coming up and bolder colors can be easily worn. I need to go back and get a full size in Rose.

Have you tried Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments and what are your thoughts?


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Latest Fashion Discovery from Japan

I took a trip to Japan in mid September, which I thoroughly enjoyed. This time I was able to do a meet up with blogger K of Cosmeddicted. I had a great time meeting up with her and just spending some time eating and sightseeing.

From the time I landed in Japan and throughout our various travels, I noticed that many women were wearing gauchos pants. I remember back in the early 80's when this style was really popular and I had a couple of outfits which were favorites of mine. I was so happy to see that this style trend is coming back into fashion.

I found a pair that I really liked at Shimamura so I purchased it. I wore it recently and topped it with a simple crystal embellished top which I had in my closet and low heeled shoes, which I had recently purchased from Nordstrom Rack. I can see myself wearing these gauchos pants on a regular basis.

I would have liked to have spent time browsing and searching through all of the beauty brands but unfortunately I didn't have time for any of that. We were so busy and on the go, go, go that I honestly didn't have much shopping time. Hopefully the next time I go to Japan  I can spend some time beauty shopping.


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Review: Sephora's VIB 500 Point Urban Decay Urban Vices Palette Set + EOTD

Hi Everyone!

I know it's been a very long while since I last blogged. There will probably be a future post on that but for now I'm very excited to blog about Urban Vices Palette set, which I received almost a week ago.

Last year there was a 500 point Urban Decay palette which I really like. One of the colors in that set has become a part of my regular rotation of colors that I use and fortunately, it is a regular stock item.

I happened to be surfing Sephora's website online and saw the Urban Vices set available for a 500 point VIB redemption. I immediately called my local store and found out it was also available in our store so I rushed out to get there.

The set comes in a big box with the Urban Vices design on it.

Inside the box is another box--a small box the size of the palette, again with the Urban Vices design on it.

The back of the box with some product information, including the shadow colors.

Inside the box is the actual palette. It is made of sturdy cardboard, which is something that I don't like but I can't complain since it was a bonus item using my points.

The colors are Dope, Hoodoo, Derailed and Smokeout. Also included is a mini 24/7 Glide-on Eye Pencil in Smokeout. I haven't had a chance to do some checking so I don't know if any of these are part of their regular line or not. I think that I have Smokeout in another palette but not positive. If anyone knows these colors availability, please comment and let me know.

I did a quick EOTD using Hoodoo on the inner 1/3 of my eye, Derailed on the outer 2/3 of the eye. I dabbed MAC's Light Violet Crushed Pigment in the center of the eyelid just to give it some dimension and added Smokeout to the out corners of the eyelid and along the outer 1/4 of the lower lashline. I used Dolly Wink Eyeliner pen to line my eyes.

Like last year's palette, I'm really liking this one. One can reason that this gift isn't worth it because 500 points is equivalent to $500.00 spent. I like to look at it as a bonus, despite the value of the points because without the program, I wouldn't be getting anything. I think that with any reward program, one will never get full value of what their points were equivalent to.

I can't believe that it's mid November already. Somehow, this year has flown by much more quickly than any other year.


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Purchase Review: Stila Illuminating Powder Foundation + Mini DIY

Powder foundation is a basic item in my makeup routine. I don't use it solely as a foundation but as a finishing powder. For a few years now, my main favorites come from Japanese brands--Maquillage and Coffret D'or since they come in moisturizing formulations. Recently though, I haven't been able to find a Maquillage powder foundation labeled as moisturizing so have been using Kanebo Coffret D'or Silky Pact UV Moist Keep. 

Due to a recent mishap and extenuating circumstances,(which I will explain a little later) I was deperately in need of a new powder foundation and decided on Stila Illuminating Powder foundation. I even found a color that almost perfectly matched the Coffret D'or one that I had been using.

Like many Japanese brands, the compact case is sold separately from the powder. I read many reviews on Sephora by people upset that they had to buy the case separately. It didn't bother me since that's the way I have been purchasing my powder foundation. I decided not to buy the case since I wasn't sure if I would like the product enough to use it as a daily basic.

The ingredient list: 

According to Sephora's website, it is a velvety powder foundation which leaves a luminous, transparent finish while protecting the skin with SPF 12. You can apply it dry for a light coverage or with a damp sponge for a heavier coverage.

This is a nice powder, but using it dry it really does provide a very, very light coverage. Using it damp does provide more coverage but on me it gets a bit cakey. Even dry with the light coverage, it seems to settle a bit in my fine lines. I don't feel that it provides enough coverage for me as the day wears on.

Another beauty blogger asked me recently what I use to conceal under my eyes. I use the powder foundation. One of the very few good points for me is that I do not have dark circles and puffy under eyes.

While I do have some discoloration, it is very light that I don't need to do heavy concealing.(I do need to conceal the freckles though.) For my under eyes, all that I do after I apply foundation, is pat another light layer of foundation under my eyes and then set it with the powder foundation. 

The Stila Illuminating Powder foundation doesn't work as well as Coffret D'or for me but it's a good backup in case of an emergency. So what was my mishap? I had hit pan on my Coffret D'or powder foundation and had it at the point where the bottom half was pan and the top half was powder. I had to be out working all day and knew that I would be needing a touch up before heading to another function so I packed it into my makeup case. Unfortunately because it was only half a pan, it ended up cracking and breaking into many pieces. I had been debating several weeks before on whether to order a new one for backup but held off thinking that I would be traveling to Japan in a few months. To top it off, when I went to my online vendor, Ichibankao, for this product, she was closed for summer vacation and it would be a couple of weeks before she returned and opened business again. This is what made me decide that I needed to find a substitute until I could place an order.

In the meantime, I decided to empty out the Coffret D'or pan and compact.

I decided to try to repress the broken remains of foundation. To my delight, it worked! I used the 44mm round pan to press the broken product and it was just the right size.

As you can see, it is smaller than the original compact size and it fits perfectly into the travel palette that I am using to travel with. It ends up being perfect timing for me to eliminate more bulk by not having to take the original compact case.

So my final conclusion on the Stila Illuminating Powder Foundation is that it will be a nice backup to have to use in emergencies. It just doesn't cut it to replace the Coffret D'or powder foundation since Coffret D'or gives me more coverage without caking or settling into fine lines and lasts on me for hours. Besides, I LOVE the case that I got when I first started using Coffret D'or.

Isn't it pretty?!