Sunday, February 23, 2014

Lighter and Brighter with Strip's IPL ACE

As February or Valentine season comes to a close, we know one thing, summer's fast approaching. After the Holiday and love month binge, we've all got a few months to prepare for beach season. Yes, it's a whole production number to prepare for summer, getting our bodies swimwear ready. Why? Because with summer comes beach outings and with outings and our culture, there are photos. And with photos and digital images being shared with today's modern technology, our Summer 2014 (and all the other high-tech summers before that and thereafter) will forever be immortalized in social media and eventually in people's brains. So yes, it's a preparation to have a summer body because one day when we're old and wrinkly, we would want proof that we could rock that bikini, just like Miranda Kerr over here:

Aside from getting summer shapely-ready ( hello pole conditioning exercises and core blasters from yoga), let's not forget to do away those unwanted hairs. Since puberty, we have had a long-struggling battle with bodily hair with our weapons of choice - be it a shaving razor, DIY home wax strips or depilatory kits, or our trusty tweezers. We all want to have smooth and silky underarms like deodorant commercial models and supermodels in glossies with not a strand of unwanted hair peeking through.

IPL (or elecytolysis or laser) hair removals have made us say goodbye to our unwanted hairs almost forever. Back then, if you had older sisters, aunts, cousins, or friends who underwent it when it first came out, they may recall that not only was it expensive but also a very painful process. Thankfully, with more research and development, permanent hair removal procedures are now less painful and deliver better results faster.

I have experienced  IPL ACE,a semi-permanent 2-in-1 treatment that reduces hair growth and rejuvenates skin by stimulating collagen production. This technology is offered by Strip Manila . If any of you have already undergone Strip Manila's advanced IPL technology, it's still the same process of removing unwanted hair but also includes the additional process of  tightening and lightening the skin after hair removal so we get soft, smooth, hair-free skin.

I had my treatment on my underarms a few weeks ago. For busy ladies, I have to say you can get this done during lunchbreak because not only was it quick but also a painless experience. In fact, it just felt cold when the gel was applied. The cold gel gets warmer during the treatment and if the gel starts to get a little too warm or a tad hot for you to handle, more gel can be applied to make it cold. The IPL ACE technology felt more like a massage even. Plus points too on standard SOPs like skin preps like cleansing the area before and after treatment as well as wearing safety goggles.

Of course, one session does not instantly transform our underarms into those silky as a baby's bonbon smooth. Depending on the person, hair reduction can be observed after a course of 6-8 sessions. Most people usually expect around 70-80 percent reduction. Immediately though during the first treatment, skin rejuvenation can be seen (around 10-15 percent textural improvement). As for skin texture, results  are more significant in the 4th or 5th session. The customer may have this done every 4 weeks for face treatments and 5-6 weeks for body treatments.

Chemicals in our deodorant or wearing too much tight clothing or daily activities can cause darkening of the underarms or bikini line. I'm glad that IPL ACE can whiten and tighten the skin to make it look more youthful and as if we never had our unwanted hair since birth at all. Now imagine having hair-free, silky-smooth underarms forever and the liberty of just wearing tank tops during summer without worrying of unsightly fuzziness.

So how much does IPL ACE cost per session? A full face costs Php22,500  Underarm costs Php 7,500. Brazilian Php 22,500. Half leg costs Php 18,750. The service though is only available to female clients at all Strip Manila Branches.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Ivory and White 2014 Shoot

I'm sharing with this post the photos and behind-the-scenes for the shoot last month I did with Ivory and White Bridal Store. For those who haven't heard it yet, Ivory and White is a bridal boutique based in Quezon City that sells ready-to-wear bridal gowns at a fraction of the cost of what usual designer gowns cost. Now couples have that extra money to spare for the honeymoon, a new TV set or oven, or whatever they want to buy in order to start their new life together.

Our model for the shoot is DJ/stage actress Carla Dunareanu (coincidentally, I was listening to her radio show on the way to QC for our shoot). You guys might have last seen her in the stage play Grease where she portrayed one of the Pink Ladies. I saw her first in The Kitchen Musical,a TV series in AXN, which I regularly followed.

I upgraded my candy pink palette that I had back in 2011 for something that's more neutral, like the bride is naturally glowy and rosy. Loose and big curls for effortless beauty. Veil optional for breezy garden weddings.

This look is more classic bride, like she can look back in her photos when she's 80 and go like, "Wow! I must be a hottie when I was younger!" I see a lot of smokey eyes in brides lately in weddings being posted in Facebook. For brides who want emphasis but still want the classic look overall. In other words, brides who go, "I want to look natural but I really want my eyes to pop out."

I recommend this look too for weddings at night or with receptions done in hotels, where there's mood lighting and light makeup can look washed out.

Oh, I also did hair in this shoot. Here's a close look on the updo I did. It's a classic low bun with loopy hair.

For the third and last look, we included a rose accessory which inspired me to change up the look altogether.

Pop of color for bridal? Why not? Red lips made a lot of difference. I made the features warmer by additional contouring and added a bit of eyeliner to tie the eyes with the lips so the eyes don't look that lost . The red by the way, is Collection Cosmetics Queen of Hearts. For those who have it, you guys agree with me on the staying power, right?

Carla's three looks. Each one is very different from the other. Awesome how makeup can change things.

It seems like we were whisked off at a faraway place for this shoot. We shot at Studio Namu in Quezon City, and this studio is quite popular for prenup sessions where the couple would want a lot of layouts without travelling away from the city. They've got a lot of layouts to play along in one big studio too.

Thank you everyone! It was such an awesome day and the first shoot of the year.

Official Photo Credits:Photographer: Niel Ong
Model: Carla Dunareanu
Clothes: Ivory and White Bridal
Makeup and Hair: Me!
Location: Studio Namu