Thursday, April 28, 2011


Peeps, Sephora Malaysia officially opened its doors at 12:30pm this afternoon!!!!!! Of course, even though my office is just round the corner, I could not make it for the opening....bleh!

Makeup junkies, arise and make your way to Starhill Gallery a.s.a.p!

Remember you heard it first here!!!!!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Putting on Falsies - The Whole Process De-Mystified!!

What a struggle it has been for me to put on false eyelashes!! Of course I turned to You Tube and watched a few tutorials but do you think I learned anything? Nope....there are some things in life you need to experience and fail at before you get the hang of it. This is one of those experiences.

I was inspired to take on wearing false eyelashes after seeing a cousin of mine wear them and I purchased some online - cheap as chips they were, and can last up to several uses if you treat them well. So allow me to take you on my journey.....perhaps you too can pick up a trick or two after reading this.

Let me start with the falsies can buy them at any beauty store for a very reasonable price if you look around. There are some fancy styles of varying thickness as well as lengths and there are simple ones which mimic natural looking lashes or elaborate ones. For some reason, I have always associated false lashes with drag make-up and the whole over the top look which cannot be practical for everyday use. I was wrong. I have spotted a few ladies around my work area wearing falsies to work too!

I have some which I purchased from an online seller at but I found some very usable everyday falsies for an absolute steal at a store near my home one day and all I went there for was to do my grocery shopping! See the picture below? These cost RM3.90, are flexible (you want them to be pliable so they fit the curve of your lashes without the ends popping up halfway through your day!) and very natural looking. The brand on these were Opoola Eyelashes and the number on them was 040. The lashes came with a tiny tube of lash glue which I did not use - rather, I used black colored eyelash glue which I purchased from SASA. If you look closely, the lash on your right (in the first picture below) is slightly shorter in width as I snipped off a little to experiment the fit. They sit very nicely in the box and will not move around because the band that holds the lash is slightly sticky and the lashes will stick to the plastic backing.

The pictures below shows my eye with the eyelash on. Do you think they look natural interspersed with my own lashes?

Now for the how-to! First you need to assemble your equipment. Get your glue and squeeze out a little on the cover (pictured below) - here I used the plastic cover that the lashes came in.....don't worry about getting it dirty as once the leftover glue dries up, you can easily peel it off and there will not be any residue on the surface. Use a bobby pin or orange stick (the one's you use to push your cuticles back) or in this case, I used a plastic stick. Carefully peel off one lash. Pick up some glue with the stick, and apply this to the entire length of the band. Ensure you add a little extra glue on the ends of the band if you need to - this ensures that the ends stick firmly to your lash line. If you do not put enough glue on the ends, they tend to lift off or peel off as you begin to blink and will feel uncomfortable.

There are several types of glue on the market with varying prices. The best brand I know is DUO which SASA Singapore carries. I have not seen this brand at our local SASA. There are different colors also which you can choose from: transparent, white and black. White glue will turn transparent when dry and the black glue can get messy if you do not wait for it to dry a little before applying your lash.

Once you apply your preferred glue to the band of the lash, you need to wait for at least 30 seconds to a minute until the glue gets tacky - this means it should dry a little and get thicker. My mistake was putting on the eyelash as soon as I applied the glue.....the result? The eyelash did not stick well and the ends kept coming off. I spent 20 minutes last Sunday as I was getting ready to attend the Easter Service....I also got black glue all over my eyelid which messed up my eye makeup! I gave up after struggling with it, until I attempted it again, this time using a different approach. My fear was that the glue would dry up and the eyelash would not adhere properly to my lids. Boy was I wrong!  

So now assuming you have put on the glue, give it a minute, or less  if you blow on the glue several times. Once the required 'setting' time is up, hold the lashes firmly in the middle and put it just above your natural lashes. Angle it so you get this middle part and the middle of your natural lashes aligned properly. You will find that the false lashes will stick to your skin. Next gently grip one end of the lash and push it down, again along your natural lash line, followed by the other end. If indeed you waited long enough for the glue to get tacky and thick, you will not need to worry about the glue smearing all over your lid and the lash will stick properly.

In the picture below, you will see a lash gripper, which I found at the beauty section of my local grocery store. I used this earlier to apply my lashes, but you can do just as well with your fingers or a tweezer.   

The next step and quite crucial to the whole process is to use a tweezer or even the back of an eyeshadow brush to gently push the tops of your eyelids down on the freshly applied lashes to further 'seal' it in place. As you can see from the picture above, I placed the metal grip a few millimeters above my false lashes and pushed downwards. This motion pushes the skin just above the eyelash inwards and ensures that it sticks firmly in place. Do this along the entire line of the lash and you are done. 

Open your eyes carefully, as some glue may have seeped onto your bottom lid, thus sticking them together. If that happens, gently pull off the glue. Once you are done using the lashes, gently peel them from one end to the other and peel off any dry glue from the band before you put them back into the original box. These can then be used again. You may need an oil based remover to remove the glue residue from your lids.

Below you will see the set of falsies and metal applicator which I bought  for a steal at RM10.90. The metal applicator does not hold the lashes very well as the tips do not meet fully when pushed together but it takes some getting used to and I have only used it once. The funny thing is, I purchased this for RM10.90 and then took a walk to check out what was new at a SASA store close by and the very same item was selling for RM15.90!! Can you believe that? Such an elevated price! So one other thing you can learn from this is to first check if you can get the item you want from SASA cheaper somewhere else....who knows, you might save yourself a few ringgits, like I did!

So for those of you who have been wanting to try out falsies, do give it a spin. Like me, you may need to try a few times until you get it right but nothing ventured, nothing gained!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

ELF Brightening Eye Color in Luxe

This palette has been in my collection for quite a while and I did not quite know how to make use of it to create a pleasing eye look. This was because I did not know how to use the taupe color in the quad to suit my skintone. For me, one color that is difficult to work with is taupe and I dismissed this palette to the back of my drawer because of that color, which is quite unfair really. So when I was free one evening, I took this out and challenged myself to come up with a look that used all the colors - yes, even the dark greyish taupe. I must say, I was quite pleased with the results and also thought of one more way to make taupe work for me. Let me share that with you as you read....

This is Luxe (#2005) from the dollar range of products that ELF has and I bought this in a spree quite some time back! My apologies if the photo looks a little mangy....there is color dust all over the palette and I took photo's of this AFTER I had used the palette for this look.

Here is the finished look which from afar looks very wearable even for the office. Quite muted and not at all over the top. The key to this was slowly layering the colors and careful blending. I have not used this look for the office yet but will do so when I have enough time to apply, blend and keep it light and muted.

Up close, you can see the colors in the quad. Particularly I wanted to try the rosy red as this is not a common color as well as not something you would think of using to the office. In the picture, I used it in the crease to 'lift' the rest of the colors and give some definition to the eye. I topped this off by defining my brows with a spoolie and a coordinating brow color swept through to give the brows more shape. I then used a black liquid liner and finished with lashings of mascara on the lashes.

If you have this quad (or are thinking of picking something up from ELF) and have been wondering how to do justice to all the colors, I have added a guide here for you. In the picture below, I have numbered the colors. 1 - is a creamy yellowish beige with shimmer; 2 -  is a rosey burgundy color; 3 - is a shimmery taupey brown and 4 - is a dark taupe with greyish undertones.

Here is how I placed the products on my lids and they correspond to the numbering on the quad itself. I started off by priming my lids with NYX Eyeshadow Base in Skintone - ladies, if you do not use primer on your lids, do consider starting because this one step prevents creasing (which is a problem for me) and it really intensifies whatever colors you use and keeps it looking vibrant all day. I work long hours somedays and I put on my make-up at 6:30 in the morning and when I get home at 7 in the evening, I sometimes stop and stare in amazement at how brilliant and fresh my eye colors look even after 12 hours!
I placed the beige on the eyelid as you can see above and used this as my base color. I extended this color all over my eyelid concentrating on the inner part of my eye. Once that was done, I used the rosey red with burgundy undertones on the crease of my lid with a fluffy brush and blended this in until it was a light swathe of color.

I then used the light brown on the middle towards the outer corner of my eyelid to create a gradual wash of color from light to dark. Then with the darkest color, I placed this on the outer corner of my eye to give it some shading and definition. This I blended well with a clean blending brush. I took some of the light brown and used this on the top of area #2 to blend in the harsh lines of the red. Lastly, I used the lightest color as a highlight on my browbone - #1.

Remember I mentioned that I thought of another way to make the colors pop on my skin? Well, the next time I use this quad, I will use NYX jumbo pencil in Milk all over the lid so the colors look a little more brighter...perhaps the effect will be different. Promise to update you once I get the chance to do that!!

Hope you liked this....

Monday, April 25, 2011

Badger Balm Cuticle Care - If The Badger Needs It, So Do I!

My cuticles are not a sight to behold because they are very dry and tend to split often which is why I always carry creams to apply on my hands whenever I feel that they are dry. It also does not help that I work in a very cold and dry office. So you can imagine my surprise when I chanced upon a whole range of Badger products in Isetan, KLCC in the most unlikely of places....the childrens department close to where milk bottles and nappy rash creams are!

I have been interested in purchasing the Sleep Balm for my mother and meant to do it online for the longest time but never got round to doing it, so I was indeed thankful when I saw this last weekend. I quickly picked up the Sleep Balm for mum and chose the Cuticle Care Balm for myself as I liked the fact that it is small and convenient to slip into the sidepocket of my hand bag ready to be fished out when I need a quick touch up on the cuticles.

First off, I have to say that I find the smell of this balm totally relaxing. As soon as I opened the tin, I got a whiff of the smell and it was very soothing and not at all overpowering. Once I had worked it into my cuticles, the smell seemed even fainter to the nose. My husband took one sniff and asked me if this was to keep mosquitoes away! I gave him 'the look' of course,  but when I inspected the ingredient list, lemongrass oil was there - which explains why he thought it was to deter the mozzies! In Malaysia, some insect repellants use this as an ingredient and when applied on the hands and legs, effectively keep the bugs away and he was merely remembering the smell from the repellant our children use before they play in the garden every evening! 

The moment you put your warm finger into the buttery yellow balm, it melts. The back of the tin says that upon the heat of your finger touching the surface, pearls of shea rise to the top and you can see that the surface of the balm becomes shiny and oily.This however, allows you to pick up the product to apply on your cuticles easily without having to apply pressure. The Shea Butter in this product is from the seed of the wild-grown Karite Tree of Western Africa. Do not place this tin near warm computers, in your car or places where there is direct sunlight as this will 'melt' the product very quickly.

Once I massaged the balm into my cuticles and the areas surrounding my nails, the dryness disappeared and my hands look so much better. I do hope with prolonged use, this will improve my dry cuticles and keep them looking moisturized. I purchased this for RM 35 - may be a little pricey but I think the product will last for a long time and will work out to mere cents if you are looking at cost per use/application.

Here is a list of the ingredients:-
Vitellaria Paradoxa Sp. Nilotica (Shea) Butter, Olea Europaea (Extra Virgin Olive) Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Oil, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Essential Oils of Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium), Citrus Reticulata (Mandarin), Cymbopogon Schoenanthus (Lemongrass), Elettaria Cardamomum (Cardamom), Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary Verbenone), Litsea Cubeba (Litsea), and CO2 Extracts of Hippophae Rhamnoides (Seabuckthorn Berry) Extract and Zingiber Officinale (Ginger).

I liked how it said "Carry Beauty In Your Hands" and "Clever Badger" on the side of the tin - very cutesy. 

Have you tried any of the products in this line? I have my eyes on the Cheerful Mind Balm (very good for pre-menstrual days!) ; Stress Soother (a nice strong whiff whenever the boss is around!); Sore Muscle Rub - Extra Strength (to ease the neck muscle tension from hours of sitting in front of a computer). There are also balms for babies - Baby Balm and the Night Night Balm. There were also some lip products which, sadly, I did not pay much attention to as I was in a hurry.....but there will always be a next time.....

Friday, April 15, 2011

Lakme Insta-Liner

Here's what I scored from a recent trip to Singapore. If you had mistaken this bottle for nail polish - you are forgiven! I thought so too at first glance! Then when I read it was an eye liner, I was delighted and intrigued as to how it would perform.

My first reaction was - what a generous amount of product for about RM10? Don't you think so? The bottle is big compared to other liquid liners on the market which come in a very small bottle but to be fair lasts a very long time.

For me, what is important is the applicator....if its too long, the application can be less precise. If it is not long enough, you will not be able to apply the product close enough to your lashes without smudging it over the lid. Take a look at the slim brush tip at the bottom.

The applicator itself is not that long but the brush is in my opinion too long and being similar to nail polish in design, you need to remove excess product from the brush tip before you apply as it seems to pick up more product than you need. This is also because the liquid liner is very watery. Have you ever had nail polish which flowed to the tip of the brush and created a large blob at the end of the brush? Well this will do the exact same thing if you do not first swipe off the excess on the lip of the bottle.

The color available was black and this was indeed a very dark black. It applied smoothly as you can see from in the bottom picture and gives a nice thin line. However, you need to have a deft hand and some experience in applying liquid liner. Not for the faint hearted and unsteady handed I assure you. 

I liked how I was able to get very close to the lash line with the applicator but even though I apply liquid liner everyday, I still needed a few tries before I got used to the wand which is usually slim on other brands. I applaud Lakme for its unique approach to creating the bottle and thank them for the quantity which is good value for money for those who are on a budget (this was SGD 3.50).

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara

With the promise of lashes looking as if you have falsies on, who can resist? No sir, not me! Ever since I heard that Max Factor was back in town, I was itching to go see the goods. Sadly, to hear that this brand is no more a 'drugstore' brand was upsetting as I do remember seeing items from this iconic brand in the boudouir's of several aunts back in the day.

This mascara looks rather bulky but I have no problems with that. The wand is rather big and long but I like the grip of it as it gives me good control. As you can see from the picture below, the applicator has short stubby bristles which are rubbery in texture. They work very well to grip the lash and dispense product to it. As for the mascara itself, to me it seems a little on the dry side and sometimes I wonder if I do have enough product on the end of the wand - I do not pump the wand vigorously up and down to get more product as I don't like the idea of introducing too much air into it. So what I do is gently swirl the wand in the tube as I open it.  

The before and afters are quite dramatic and speaks volumes! Please note that I did this at night without any makeup on my face.....

The picture below shows you my lashes without mascara. (Sorry for the red veined eye!)

And this picture below is with mascara! KA-BOOM! Look at that! Lengthened, thickened, darkened - all in two coats! I do not curl my lashes partly because I am lazy and also because I think the method I use to apply my mascara gives it a natural curl which stays all day long. I have never experienced limp lashes and the humidity does not affect them once my mascara is on.

Here is what I do - I apply mascara to the top side of the lashes from the root in a left to right motion and then sweep from root to tips from the outer lashes to the inner ones. I then move to the underside and do the same. Only as I am sweeping the wand from the root to the tips, I press the wand against the lashes that are close to the root and push the lashes up to create the curl and keep it. What happens is, when the product that you put on the top part of the lashes dries, it holds the curl and keeps it that way without going limp. 

You can see that the eye on the left looks light and sparse whereas on the right, lashes are thicker and longer.

What do you think readers? Do you have this lovely mascara? Will you purchase and give it a spin like I did?