How This Organic Skincare Line Got My Glow Back (Part 2)

Guys! I finally got my glow back—and I think it’s even better than before!

I was soooo surprised when this organic night cream that I used actually delivered! No makeup!!

I was soooo surprised when this organic night cream that I used actually delivered! I’m not wearing any makeup at all here!!

Organic?? Can you believe it?? I swore off organic products for my face years ago when switching to VCO caused a horrible cycle of cystic acne (I used it for a year to no avail). So when I decided to try this organic line, I was wary, scared, and doubtful. But guess what? It obviously worked, and now, I’m hooked!

Want to find out what it is? Click, click, click! I can’t wait to tell you all about it! Continue reading

How Micellar Water Saved My Skin (Dry Skin Fixes-Part 1)

I’ve been chasing after my skin’s lit-from-within glow for a while now, so I thought I’d do a beauty series about how I got my complexion back on track. I’ve had oily-combination skin all my life, so when my skin type changed to dry and sensitive, it took me a loooong time before I figured out which skincare combos to use.

My bare skin now and a little brow. Finally feeling like my glow is starting to come back!

My bare skin—saved with the help of micellar water—and a little brow. It’s still kinda dry, but you can see what it looked like last month here—red, dull, and kinda splotchy.

So my first plan of attack was to save my dry skin was to switch to a non-foaming facial wash. The only problem? Creamy cleansers make me feel like I’m not getting a good-enough clean. Could be my imagination, but sometimes, I feel like there’s still dirt and bacteria mixed with the residue I feel after I rinse or wipe it off.

That's why I was so happy I found this in my stash! It's La Mer The Cleansing Micellar Water, P>>>.

That’s why I was so happy I found this in my stash! It’s the La Mer The Cleansing Micellar Water.

I know, I know. You’re probably wondering what the heck micellar water is…and what’s it really supposed to do anyway? *cracks knuckles* Well, let me tell you! Continue reading

Why You Should Get Your Brows Waxed This May

Do you ever feel guilty for your beauty buys and splurges? Well, I have some fab news for you! This month, Benefit Cosmetics is donating EVERY SINGLE PESO they earn from their brow services to Mano Amiga Academy.

Mano Amiga Academy is a school that aims to provide a good education to children from low-income families.

Mano Amiga Academy is a school that aims to provide a good education to children from low-income families. Photo: instagram.com/manoamigaacademy

What I found interesting about Mano Amiga was that the organization also aims to help their student’s mothers find stable jobs, so that they can perform better at school. It makes sense, right? The more secure the students feel at home, the better they can perform at school.

So what are you waiting for? Head on over to the nearest Benefit Brow Bar to shape your arches!

So what are you waiting for? Head on over to the nearest Benefit Brow Bar! Not only will you get the arch support you need, but you’ll also be helping the Mano Amiga kids get through school.

Of course, I wanted to join in on all the “giving back” fun by doing a little giveaway for you…Jump to the next page to check out the Benefit loot I’m raffling off to one lucky reader!  Continue reading

Here’s What Happened When I Used A Korean Face Mask For 7 Days

If I had to choose between skincare and makeup, I’d definitely choose skincare. But no matter how diligent I was with my cleanse-tone-moisturize routine, it wasn’t enough. After traveling to colder climates over the past few months, my skin finally hit its limit.

Here's what my skin looks like before the challenge. Dry, red in some areas, and tight!

Here’s what my skin looks like before the challenge. Dry, red in some areas, and tight!

When I got back from Japan last March, my skin was at its worst. It was dry, flakey, and rough—and I didn’t know how to deal. No matter how much I moisturized or exfoliated, nothing was working. So when Watsons asked me to do a 7-Day Korean Face Mask Challenge, I was in because I definitely needed to up my hydration game.

Watsons sent over a bunch of masks and I tried the 23 Years Old Cocoon Willow Silky Mask.

Watsons sent over a bunch of masks and I tried the 23 Years Old Cocoon Willow Silky Mask.

Can you see the little gadget beside the mask? That’s the MiLi Pure device. It hooks up to your iPhone via bluetooth and can check your skin’s moisture level. This way, we can check if the mask I’ll be using for 7 days really works. (Yes, I’m really that O.C. when it comes to skincare.)

This is the first time I'm trying a face mask that covers my lips!

This is the first time I’m trying a face mask that covers my lips! Btw, you guys should follow me on IG via @beautyandsparkl for more behind-the-scenes beauty action!

The mask felt weird and it felt a bit uncomfortable since my lips were covered for about 20 minutes, but despite that, it was very high in quality and very refreshing. It was thicker in texture and soaked in moisture-rich serum. I liked that it was especially made for toning dry, dehydrated skin (so it’s exactly what I needed) and that it didn’t make me breakout the entire week (huge win).

Here are the moisture results courtesy of my gadget from MiLi! The left photo is the moisture level of my face on the first day and the right photo is the moisture level of my face on the last day.

Here are the moisture results courtesy of my gadget from MiLi! The left photo is the moisture level of my face without using the mask and the right photo is the moisture level of my face immediately after.

So in case you’re wondering if Korean face masks really work, here’s your evidence! On average, skin’s moisture level would jump by almost 5 to 7% immediately after using the mask. I really enjoyed using a mask every night for a week since it saved me a lot of time and effort (in my head at least). I just had to slap on the mask—no need to tone or put a separate eye cream. I would just wait 20 minutes, massage it into my skin after, and tissue-off any excess serum on my skin. It became a ritual that I really looked forward to!

And here's a photo of what my skin looked like after the 7-Day Watsons Korean Face Mask Challenge. What do you think?

And here’s a photo of what my skin looked like after the 7-Day Watsons Korean Face Mask Challenge. What do you think?

I still need to work on getting the glow back at this point, but I was super happy that my skin was on its way to recovery. The redness isn’t as obvious anymore, it’s feeling a lot smoother, and I can feel the elasticity begin to return. Yay!

But if you truly want to appreciate the before and after shots, take a look at these photos… Continue reading

Skincare Options For Your Specific Skin Concerns

Okay, you guys. I have been trying some major skincare products recently and I thought I’d put them all together in one post. I categorized everything according to skin concerns, so it’ll be easier for you to sort through the products based on your current skin need. You ready? Let’s do this!

1. If You Want…Matte Skin
Practically every Pinay I talk to complains about the fact that her skin looks shiny or oily. If you want to control your grease production (or at least curb it while you’re wearing makeup), these goodies from Benefit can help.

That's the Benefit Porefessional Matte Rescue Gel, License To Blot, and Instant Wipeout Masks set.

That’s the Benefit Porefessional Matte Rescue Gel, License To Blot, and Instant Wipeout Masks set.

The Skin Lowdown: The mask is fun to use (watch how here) and it’s a great way to cleanse your pores of unwanted dirt and oil. As for the water-based mattifying gel, I like applying this on my T-zone when I don’t want to wear makeup and just want to look fresh all day sans retouching. Meanwhile, the License to Blot stick is fantastic for touch-ups. It has invisible blotting spheres that zaps shine for up to six hours and the stick is shaped like a diamond, so you can get apply it over the corners of your face easily.

2. If You Want…Smaller Pores
The reason your pores look big is because there’s dirt and oil trapped in there. This means that you need something that’s gonna get in there and do some deep cleaning!

Check out the Algenist Multi-Perfecting Pore Corrector Concentrate if you want tighter pores.

Check out the Algenist Multi-Perfecting Pore Corrector Concentrate if you want tighter pores.

The Skin Lowdown: It has alguronic acid (so it has anti-aging benefits) combined with salicylic acid (to exfoliate and cleanse pores). I usually apply a moisturizer after I use this because it’s not super hydrating, but this lightweight, oil-free serum did help refine and brighten my skin. Full disclosure: my pores aren’t too huge to begin with, so I didn’t see much of a difference. But research results showed that 90% of the 100 women they tested noticed that their pore size minimized within four weeks of use.

3. If You Want To…Control Oil Production.

I started taking new vitamins recently and it made my face (and scalp!) super oily. It was weird, because my skin would feel grimy even after I washed my face. So I added these goodies from Bioderma into my routine to help balance my complexion again.

From left to right, that's the Bioderma Sébium Pore Refiner, Sébium Akn Smoothing Purifying Care, and the Sébium H20 Purifying Cléansing Micelle Solution.

From left to right, that’s the Bioderma Sébium Pore Refiner, Sébium Akn Smoothing Purifying Care, and the Sébium H20 Purifying Cléansing Micelle Solution.

The Skin Lowdown: I wanted to control my skin’s oil production without overdrying it, so I would use the Sébium H20 Purifying Cléansing Micelle Solution after I wash my face. Yup, after! It’s actually more of a makeup remover, but since it’s also a cleansing water, I would swipe it over my skin to get rid of leftover oil (think of it as a substitute for toner). After that, I’d apply the Sébium Akn Smoothing Purifying Care in the morning. It helps prevent your pores from getting clogged, so it served as a barrier between my skin and makeup to help prevent breakouts. Loved this complexion balancing formula because after 2 to 3 weeks, my skin went back to normal!

More skincare recos for anti-aging, pimple-clearing, and dry skin after the jump! P.S. There’s an event invite also for Murad if you want to join us for a fun Makeup Mixology class! Continue reading

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