Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Bridal Work: Kristine

Teen's a very fun person to talk to. She's very receptive and open to ideas and makeup suggestions and doing our trial was actually very fun. During our trial, it was funny because when she knocked on the door and when I opened it, the cat out of nowhere went inside straight to the cat food. We had to shoo the cat away before starting. "Yep, it does that a lot, and four others," I said.

When I asked her about her wedding, she told me it was going to be a morning wedding, so makeup has to be very light and fresh. But light and fresh doesn't mean almost nothing. There's still got to be something of course. There are subtle contours, a kiss of rosiness, highlight, glow, and enhancement on the eyes.

Her look during her trial makeup:

It's actually a mixture of pinks and peaches, since the motif of the wedding was blue and silver. Teen's hair during her trial isn't her hair on her wedding of course. I just set it in rollers and then brushed it down for swingy, pretty volume. I also brushed her brows with one of MAC's bestselling products: Brow Set in Girl/Boy to give the look an overall bridal beauty softness.

Our preps for her wedding started as early as 5 am. Teen was her very usual joyful self, and despite everyone's lack of sleep, Teen was surrounded by her family, and friends (who were the wedding coordinators), we were giggling and hyper and falsies haven't been applied yet.

For her wedding updo, our original plan was for her to have a side ponytail but we opted to have a sideswept bun for church and loosen the bun into a low side ponytail for reception. Hair was done by my good friend and labs, Lei Ponce.

At her bridal car, Teen looks very princess-like waiting to step out. Her dress looks absolutely gorgeous, with clean lines and just lace.

This was the time she had a lot of pictures from friends and their official photographer. By the time she had to walk down the aisle, she was just by herself outside. She was the only one with a bouquet of red tulips. Pretty!

Another fact with Teen and her (now) husband Teej is that they both sing in the choir. Music during the church ceremony was provided by Hangad Music Ministry. Plus, the homily was given by one of their closest friends in the choir, who's an ordained minister.

My blogger friend Jay was there too, as he's friends with the couple since they work together in the same company. We were fascinated by the vintage car the couple hired so we took pictures.

Yes, and Jay was also able to capture me in my julalay moment.

Teej never let go of Teen's hand the entire time. Awwww....

The couple still had shots around the church too, and we had to head back to the hotel for the reception. Going from the church (Nuesta Senora de Guadalupe Church) to Richmond Hotel in Eastwood took almost forever with C5 being clogged. The reason was due to an accident wherein a container van tripped over some cable wire in Eastwood causing the entire C5 to turn into a parking lot in minutes. Taking some detours didn't work though as there were a lot who took detours too. Nevertheless, we made it! Traffic's not gonna bum anyone!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Avon BB Cream Review

Unfortunately for me, I have to steer away from BB creams, not because they're horrible but because I have yet to find a BB cream that's okay for my skin color. As you all know, I've tanned quite considerably and I've gone a few shades darker in my powder foundation. Also, I have yellow-toned skin and most BB creams I find are too beige or too pink and whenever I wear them, it seems as though my face belongs to a different body and vice-versa. In other words, my face and body shades don't match at all. Sometimes, If I wear something too pink, I can appear ashy. This is too bad since BB creams perform absolutely well on some girls with fairer and pinker complexions giving their skin that flawless glow fit for a star at one step. I still need the sunscreen and coverage benefits of my BB creams so as not to let them go to waste, what I do is adjust with a darker foundation/bronzer or use it only as undereye highlight/concealer to hide the dark undereye circles.

Avon sent me a sample of their BB cream. The affordable price (Php 399) makes it a good steal but will it be okay for my personal use? The thing I like with BB creams is that it's a one-stop shop for everything I need - moisturizer, sunscreen, and coverage in one. All I have to do is toner, apply this, powder, and go and I'm okay.

It's such a tiny tube so I'm able to take this with me also for travel. Anyway, the one I have is named "light" and I was in uh-oh mode because I thought I'll have that same experience again.

I swatched it in comparison with two BB creams that I have and as you can see, the Avon one although light, is more on the yellower side of things than the beige-y ones the others have.

When rubbed and blended, you can see that the two others are more obvious than the Avon BB cream, which blended with my skin. At most, it looked like a highlight if it's got that "fairer skin" factor. BB cream 1 is obvious it practically screamed "HELLO I'M SNOW WHITE!" BB cream 2 was more subtle but I could still see a hint of grayness since that BB cream is on the pinker side than usual.

For application, I recommend placing dots strategically on the face and spread it around. I apply more on key "highlight" points like cheeks, chin, and bridge of the nose and blend outwards so in case I get to apply too much, it looks more like highlight rather than my face dipped in white powder. Just to be sure, since this is quite a lighter shade, I tone and adjust with some bronzer or contour. With regards to coverage, it fares well like a very sheer foundation in minimizing redness and discoloration. For stubborn spots, concealer to the rescue.

The thing that's nice with BB cream is that it gives a nice glow to the skin. I just applied powder and mattifying blush (no MSF highlight). My skin looks healthier yay! And not much on the oiliness zone. Another double yay. And take note, I danced wearing it and my skin didn't feel like it was on fire.

Yay to this for making this yellow-toned instead of pinkish. I do wish for a bit more bronzey BB cream shades to cater the morena clientele here in Asia. In the meantime, a bit of bronzer and the strategic application I did can help. Oh, and I don't apply a lot at first. I apply more as the need goes.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Industrial Strength Concealer that Boi-Ings Boo-boos Away

It was quite hard for me to choose what to buy when I visited the Benefit Cosmetics store in Greenbelt last week. It was such a pretty store with so much pretty items. After much deliberation, I went home with this:

Concealers can be our best friends - on those days when we're plagued with zits (on, well, those days) and on times when we lack sleep or hydration. So why not another one in the market yes?

Boi-ing actually had the subtitle industrial-strength concealer. It's so funny because the name actually sounds like it came straight from a comic book. However, its job is serious business, stating that it's industrial strength. If that pan can talk, it would probably say, "Don't judge me by the name. I can make your red spots disappear before you even blink."

I got shade #2, which is an in-between shade that's okay generally for most skin tones. For my makeup purchases, I always have to take note that it's not just one person who would be using this. It's a cream-type concealer in a pan, but although the pan may be thinner than most concealers, a little goes a long way.

Applying this is best using fingers. The warmth of the fingers and hands help the product emulsify and blend on to the skin better. For clean and hygiene-OC,s you can scrape a bit of product with a clean spatula and use your fingers (clean and sanitized of course) to apply them to the little trouble spots. With this case, I apply this before foundation, regardless of liquid or powder.

Here's where I took it to the road test. As you can see, I need to cover up a little spot over there. All I did was clean the skin and prepped it before applying the concealer. It was relatively easy to use. It didn't even sink into creases or cake on undereye areas (provided I apply the right amount). Okay, It's not completely 100% covered but that's where airbrush makeup came about.
I'm really not the type to super cake on foundation and concealer to the point our pores can't breathe. What I do is just diminish the spots. This one worked well in the concealing part. The spot over the left brow is almost completely unnoticeable. I guess that's what they mean by industrial-strength.

Like I said earlier, this could also be used on the undereye area. Shade #2 is more on the yellow side, so it's better suited for those with purplish dark circles, like me. For my personal use, it's my one-stop shop for redness and undereye circles. I even used this on a client with mature skin and whereas some super creamy concealers tend to cake on lines, this one blended better. It's nice on oily skin or combination skin. If your skin is dry, though, you might want to revert to a creamier or liquid concealer as this can make dry patches obvious since it sets into a powder finish.

The price of the concealer is Php 1,100. It's a very potent product so a little product definitely goes a long way, it probably would take a you quite a while to use it. I think I'll purchase another shade that's more specific to certain needs, but I'm glad I found another concealer alternative and a brand to use.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Benefit Cosmetics In Manila

Benefit Cosmetics has been a very popular brand with beauty fanatics. First heard via online reviews and YouTube v-logs and raves, it has gotten to many pasalubong or pabili lists since it's not available locally. When Benefit Cosmetics came to Manila and opened last week, it was welcomed by its Manila fans. I got there at around 3 pm. The store was packed with fans and friends who were busy trying out products and shopping.

The store totally whisked me back in time to flirty boudoirs, powder rooms, and everything pinup girl chic. I remember the quaint candy shops in San Francisco when I stepped in the store.

Lippies are Bambi's best friends. Shy is the bestselling shade of lipstick, which is a pretty lilacy-pink shade.

Bathina is a body balm that's great for beauty editorials and brides for a sheer body glow. Not for pole dancers though pero when I'm out for a special occasion, I could whip out one for a sheer glow on my legs and collarbone. (Hmm... Kiars and I were hoping that there'll be a grip paste and Bathina collaboration so we can pole with glowy skin :P)

Goodies like primers, concealers, and blush (in jars like candy) are in this shelf.

Aside from makeup and skincare, Benefit Cosmetics also provides waxing services to defuzz our bodies of unwanted hair.

Cheriza mentioned to me that this is one of her favorite Benefit makeup sets.

This looks interesting - concoctions to give the user the most glowing skin ever.

This store won't be hard to miss. It's located at Greenbelt 5 ground floor, right next to Shiseido, where Jurlique used to be. :)

Taking Flutter False Eyelashes to Work at the SMT Christmas Party with the Polecats

I have a vast collection of false eyelashes. When AJ went to the house and started going over my stuff, he was surprised to see that I have not one but two toolboxes full of falsies. One toolbox is for the thick avante garde falsies used in photoshoots and I have another box for the ones I use in beauty shoots/brides/personal clients. So what I did when Sophie and I chatted and she mentioned that she's also selling falsies? I got myself a box! Hello Flutter lashes!

I got this box at the Moonlit Bazaar in Rockwell a few weeks ago. It's pretty affordable, Php350 for a box of ten pairs that's super reusable provided you take really good care of them.

They have various styles and thicknesses available for your own need - from bridal to glamour events, and in my case, for dance performances. The pair I got is called Feisty. The strands (made of synthetic hairs) are styled criss-crossing each other then winged out for a very pretty eye-opening and lifting effect a-la Bond girl. I've been watching James Bond movies every night so I think my style's been influenced a lot.

For shows, lashes are a must to bring life to the eyes. As makeup is more heavy-handed than everyday makeup, the lashes we use for shows when I have gigs with the Polecats or during our own performances have to be thicker than bridal lashes, but not too drag like that it impairs the sights or we'd be gaining muscles on our eyelids from trying to keep our eyes open at the weight of the lashes.

So where did I take my Flutter lashes to work? At last Wednesday's gig with the Polecats at the SMT Christmas Party. :) Kayleen and Margaret were asked to perform for the company's annual Christmas Party. The employees also brought their kids with them, so the dances are also kid-friendly.

They were going to have doubles at their finale number and since the theme of the party was sailor or nautical party, I got inspiration from Naughty Nauticals, a MAC collection years ago with smoky blue eyes and bright red lips, which matched their doubles costume, but I made it okay enough to fit their costumes at the solo performances.

Up close Kayleen's eyes with the Feisty Flutter lashes. As you can see, it really enhanced her eyes so they don't get lost with the bright blue and deep black. I still want them to look pretty for photo-ops and of course, she still needs to see while doing tricks.

Kayleen was up first and she danced to Surfer Girl. It was one of the songs we danced to in class, and I remember Kayleen teaching us the choreo last summer, but of course, her version had more advanced moves like knee hold, reverse butterfly, and her trademark hummingbird.

Also, I curled Kayleen's hair that day for Surfer Girl prettiness.

Margaret did her solo on a spinny pole. I swear, I don't know how she does it - looking absolutely graceful and long and not getting dizzy at all. Spinning pole is harder than it looks. She danced to a song from Finding Nemo and with all the fishies around the function room, we were taken under the sea.

Not only does she have enviable abs, her splits are jaw-dropping with their perfect form - straight legs, square hips, toes pointed.

Anyway, I asked the girls what their comment was with the falsies and they said that the lashes didn't feel heavy at all. They're used to wearing falsies, even thicker and heavier ones for shows. This however, felt light and Margaret told me that they felt like they weren't wearing false eyelashes. However, they still had the thickness and length we wanted for "show" level. For application, we just had to cut the ends to fit the wearer's eyes to make them more comfy (plus the ends are long) and use good-quality lash glue (I use Duo) so we could use them again and again. So eyesight and comfort level shall not suffer for the price of pretty lashes. Yay! Oh yes, if you want to know where they can be purchased, they can be purchased at Purbeauty Co. at Serendra and Crossings Shangri-La Plaza Mall and Trinoma.

The comfort level lasted from a meal break their doubles. They performed Candyman in Sailor Costumes.

It was a fun night and the employees of SMT and their families enjoyed their performance. Thanks Polecats for having me again and Sophie for introducing me to Flutter false eyelashes.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Red Door Gets A New Look

If you're a kid in the 80s, you'd probably remember the classic scent Red Door and the iconic bottle with a red cap in your mom's, aunt's, or grandma's dresser. You'd remember taking a whiff of it as you receive a kiss or hug on an annual family reunion. The rich and floral scent gives memories of women in classic black pumps, red lipstick, and oversize (or cat-eye) shades walking along the streets of 1950's Manhattan.

Decades later, Red Door, which happens to be Elizabeth Arden's classic signature fragrance revamps to a whole new pretty look with its bottle taking shape of a bold red glass design, which looks like, literally, a red door. The name Red Door, I just found out was named after the company's day spa, Elizabeth Arden Red Door Salon, which has been around for nearly 100 years. If you Google pictures of the Red Door Salon, you'd see that it does have a big bright red door greeting its clients. That big red door has the same shape as the new perfume bottle.

This could be a gift for a female relative who loves this classic scent, if you still have no idea what to give her this Christmas. The 100 mL EDT spray (Php 4550) and 50 mL EDT spray (Php3450) looks great as a bold red statement in her dresser. The 30 mL bottle (Pho2250) would be pretty to tote on her purse too, should she like a spritzer to refresh the scent come a special dinner with friends or family in a nice restaurant.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Bridal Work: Rowie

Rowie's wedding happened before the December rush, and it was a wedding where everything fell into place regardless of whatever the circumstance may be. Her wedding is a union of two worlds and cultures united by two people in love. And speaking of love, love was truly in the air that day because it was Rowie's good friend Grace who was the wedding coordinator, and Grace got me and Mike's awesome team iSnap Creatives.

You know the awesome thing about working with friends? It's fun.

Mike and I love to goof a lot. It was more of a relaxed reunion for suppliers, so with a relaxed atmosphere, we have a relaxed bride. I did hair and makeup for both Rowie and her mum, giving them natural looks that enhanced their features. Since it was an outdoor garden wedding, makeup should stay so airbrush was the recommended tool.

Outdoor weddings can get risky because of the scare that it might rain anytime, but the weather cooperated. Not a droplet of rainfall fell, and the ground was dry. No sinking heels or muddy gowns today!

Rowie and her mom post-makeup, sharing a very tender moment.

Since night tends to arrive a lot quicker these -ber months, the couple's photos had to be done before the ceremony, where there's still natural light. Geoff's reaction was priceless when he saw the bride. He cried. I was worried at first though, but then when he said he found her so pretty I was relieved.

I just had to capture the moment! :)

Picture time!

Sid at work, doing video.

Geoff's friends flew all the way from Australia just to witness this very special occasion.

Another thing, while I texted Rowie the day before asking if there's any dress code for her wedding, she just said not to wear black. I was planning on wearing my black multi-dress that day, but since it was a no-black affair, I put it back in the closet and took out my green onesie that day.
Guess what the motif of the wedding was? Green. Not only did I follow the no-black rule but I actually followed (accidentally) the color motif. Heeheehee.

bride: Rowie Balmeo-Keleher
makeup and hair: Bambi de la Cruz Makeup Artistry
photo and video: iSnap Creatives
coordination: Wonderful occasions
venue: Light of Love

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Comeback of the Olive Dry Oil Mist! Yay!

Weeks ago, there have been teaser posters at The Body Shop stores as well as the Facebook fan page showing a "Mystery Item".

Just an outline. Definite clue was a product making a comeback. If you're a TBS follower since day 1 and a user, I think that even without clues, you'd know what it is. Well, the secret was finally revealed a few weeks ago. It was a product making a comeback and it's the Olive Dry Oil Mist!

This shot will tell you that it's really back.

Apparently, the Olive Dry Oil Mist is a very popular product here in the Philippines. The clean olive scent and the luxurious feel of moisturized skin without the greasy afterfeel (yes it's true it's oil but not a greasy slick was felt) made it a bestseller here. However, globally, it wasn't as popular so they had to let it go. This is a special order for the fans of the product here in the Philippines who love it a lot.

Actually, it's my first time to use this product. I asked them, if it's like the bath oils you apply while the skin is damp and then towel off. Turns our it's just like lotion. You towel off, spray, and then spread. Ironically, despite the fact that it's oil, my skin wasn't left greasy or yucky. In fact, the reason why it was such a bestseller in the Philippines was because it had the moisturizing action we need without the slick greasy feel we hate. In fact, it was easily absorbed by the body and I didn't feel greasy all throughout the day.

Where do I use this? All over. During the night, I couple this with The Body Shop's Olive Body Butter on my super dry areas like my elbows, knees, feet, ankles, and I take extra TLC on my body parts that need extra moisture as well as the parts where my skin gets chafed a lot.

This however, is available for a limited time only. When I visited The Body Shop branches in Makati, I found out that the Olive Dry Oil Mist bottles were already gone, and some stores have only little bottles left. So if you must, it's best to stock up on the bottles right away, now that it's available still and for a sale price of Php495.

I do wish that the Olive Dry Oil Mist would remain as a permanent stock though, even here in the Philippines. But seeing how it's fast flying off the shelves now may bring The Body Shop to make it a permanent stay hopefully. :) It's such a pretty stocking stuffer especially now it's colder and we need extra care for our dry skin.