PRODUCT REVIEW: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

Hey guys!

I have mentioned Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask several times all over this blog and this product has been featured in several skincare routines that I have posted, but I never really did a full review on this god-sent lip saver.

Since I have just recently uploaded my lip care routine (with this product included, of course!) I have decided that it is high time for me to write a full post regarding this lip mask.

(related:My Lip Care Routine (2018))

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I purchased the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Althea Korea at around March last year, and I have been using it on my lips every night ever since. As you can see from the photo below, I’m still halfway through the jar and I’ve had this with me for 11 months now! I can say that this product is indeed worth every single peso I paid for.

(related:Second Althea Korea Haul)

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This lip mask is contained in a very small pink jar which can be easily mistaken as an eye cream. The product itself is a jelly-type mixture that smells like bubblegum. It is heavenly and I am super in love with the scent of this. I mean, I can probably get high on this! This lip mask is actually very light on the lips, a little goes a long way. Although I don’t really suggest using this in the daytime because it leaves a white cast on the lip area. Also, I suggest that you apply this mask right before you decide to sleep–which means you won’t have to drink water or talk that much anymore because too much lip activity(?) (hahahaha that sounded weird) might cause the product to wear off.

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The product comes with a spatula for application. It also comes with a small spatula pouch(?) which is perfect for hygenic and travelling reasons. It used to have a white “Laneige” sign but my over-using faded it away. Anyway, I find this spatula very useful because application is made really easy with this. Also, it’s very light and smooth, and I have no problem in applying the product evenly with this.

I honestly think that this is something every beauty junkie and skinthusiast should have in their routines. It may appear to be pricey for a lip product, but there’s a lot of product in this small jar and I think one jar would at least last a year–depending on how much mask you put on your lips each night. But personally, it is worth the money and I will definitely repurchase this in case I run out of it again.

This Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask gives instant results overnight. After one use, your lips will instantly look and feel plump and smooth when you wake up. It will give you better lip texture with continued use. Aside from that, its very hygienic packaging and heavenly bubblegum scent makes this lip mask a total 10/10 for me. I recommend this for everyone, especially those with dry and chapped lips. This product will be a total help for you.

XOXO,

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PRODUCT REVIEW: My Scheming Blackhead Removal Activated Carbon Mask Set

(Some photos are taken from Google)

About a year ago, I made my very first BeautyMNL purchase. I bought the My Scheming Blackhead Removal Activated Carbon Mask Set for 750PHP with free shipping because they had an ongoing promo then ūüôā (usually your order should reach 1,500 to avail of free shipping, more details about my purchase here.)

I specifically wanted this product because it is endorsed by my all-time favorite Taiwanese actress, Ella Chen.

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(If you are a fan of Ella Chen, or if you love Taiwanese dramas, comment down below!)

Of course, Ella Chen isn’t the only reason why I wanted this product. I also wanted this because I needed a peeling mask, and I’ve known about it since forever but I didn’t know where to find one that I can put my faith into. My cousin bought a peeling mask from Watsons a few months before I bought this, and it did nothing to her. I also had a peeling mask from The Face Shop but I wanted a black one so I can really see all the gunk that it got from my nose. Thankfully, one of my friends (who is also in love with Ella Chen) told me about this, and thus I decided to give it a try.

(related: The Face Shop Jeju Volcanic Lava Peel Off Clay Nose Mask review)

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This set comes with three products, the Deep Pore Sebum Softener, which softens the sebum around the nose area. The Blackhead Removal Activated Carbon Mask itself, and the Skin Clarifying Pore Treatment Essence, which tightens the pores after the removal of blackheads.

By the way, for anyone’s information, our pores are just pores. We cannot really do anything to open or close them. The ‘hot spa’ thing or steaming that they do is to simply soften the pores so that it will be easier to remove excess sebum and dirt, it does not really ‘close’ them. However, there are ways we can reduce the appearance of pores by tightening them, thus using ice cubes.

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What I like about this product is that it comes with an instruction card. I have been using this set for a long time now, but I still consult the instruction card every single time I use it. I tend to forget the instructions because I don’t use this on a daily basis. Also, I want to make sure that I’m doing the right thing.

So, I just follow what’s in the instruction card. I massage the Deep Pore Sebum Softener¬†on my nose area for five minutes. I usually apply three drops because I don’t want the product to dry before five minutes is over, but if ever it dries out, I just add another drop. I honestly don’t know if I’m doing it the right way, but I also don’t think that I should massage my nose when it’s already dry because it might cause minor scratches on my skin. However, when five minutes is up, I just pat it dry and proceed to the second step.

This step is actually the most difficult for me because I have really low tolerance for heat. However, I still find my way to put hot water on a clean washcloth and put it over my nose for a few minutes. I usually fold it several times until I think the heat is already tolerable and safe to put over my nose, and then when I feel like it’s getting cold, I just unfold it and put the warm parts over my nose until the three-minute mark is over. To be honest, I don’t really time this step, I just wait until I feel like it’s already good to go.

After I’m done with the hot spa (which by the way aids in softening the pores, making it easier for them to cling on to the mask), I apply the Blackhead Removal Activated Carbon Mask evenly all over my nose area. It is important to apply it evenly so it would be easier to remove later on, because there will be less chances that the mask would tear off while you’re trying to remove it. It usually takes about 15 minutes until the mask completely dries, but I don’t really time this step as well, I just wait until the whole mask has dried up before I decide to remove it. It is also important to make sure that it’s already dry to avoid the mask from breaking or tearing up while you’re removing it. Also, it has to be completely dry for the blackheads and whiteheads to successfully cling on to the mask.

What I like about this product is that it doesn’t hurt when you peel it off. Unlike other nose packs and nose strips, this one doesn’t stick that much on the skin. Thus, there’s no painful tugging and pulling when removing this. As a matter of fact, I only massage through the edges of the mask until it peels off. I take that peeled portion of the mask and pull the whole thing from it without even feeling like the whole thing is pulling off my skin. It’s so light and skin-friendly. I am actually really against using pore strips because the constant tugging will result to wrinkles, and most of them aren’t even black, so there is far less satisfaction compared to using this mask. I only use nose strips whenever I’m in the mood to do something different, or whatever. I can’t really explain. There are just some days when I’m bored and I’m like, “Oh! I have some nose strips that I haven’t used! Might as well use them now!” and to be honest, although I don’t like using nose strips, I still buy some because they look so much fun. Much like face masks.

Anyway, even though removing this mask is a total breeze, it is really effective in removing blackheads and whiteheads. You can see all the gunk in the mask strip once it’s removed. (I don’t have photographic evidence, because I’m not comfortable with showing the whole internet the dirt that is on my nose. But I promise, this product does its job well.) I am so amazed at how easy it is to peel off and at how strong the sebum were able to cling on to the mask. I cannot explain the science and chemistry behind it, it’s probably the sebum softener or the hot spa, but it happens.

So after that, I do the final step, which is to apply the Skin Clarifying Pore Treatment Essence.¬†This is to soothe/minimize the pores after the whole procedure. So that’s it, my nose feels absolutely cleaner and looks a lot more brighter after.

This is a question I had in my mind before, but I cannot seem to find answers in the internet–when does my blackhead removal rituals fit in my skincare routine?¬†I don’t know how other people does it, actually. But I usually do it before or after I cleanse my face. I would usually finish the whole blackhead removal and wait half an hour or so before I start my skincare routine–which means applying the cleansing balm and proceeding to all the next steps. But there are also days when I do my double cleansing first before I start the blackhead removal, in which I would apply a toner after removing the mask and before applying the Skin Clarifying Pore Treatment Essence exclusively on my nose area, while applying my regular essence on the rest of my face. If I have a lot of time, I do this in the morning.

I honestly do think that this is one of the best blackhead removal masks out there because this doesn’t cost so much pain to remove blackheads unlike the other masks that I have heard of. I think this will work perfectly well with people who has sensitive skin and low pain tolerance. I recommend this to everyone who wants their blackheads removed. While I don’t consider this as a holy grail, I still think this is an awesome product and I would rate it 8 out of 10.

What is your favorite blackhead-removing product? Are peeling masks like this really commendable? Or should I just use BHAs and head to the facial spa for blackhead extractions every now and then? Comment down below!

XOXO,

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Updated AM/PM Skincare Routine for 2018 (A.K.A. first phase of my 2018 skincare goals)

Hey guys!

New Year, new skincare routines! Yay!

I’m now done with my Christmas/new year skincare shopping, and I have already posted my hauls in this site (check them out here, and here.) It is now time for me to reveal my latest morning and evening skincare routines with the products I just purchased.

If you want to know to know my 2018 Skincare Goals, I wrote about it here.

It has been a long time since I posted an updated skincare routine here, and that’s primarily because for the past few months, there was not much of a change in my skincare routine (in fact, some of the items from my last skincare routine can still be found in these new routines!) and I’m afraid that if I post them after just a few product changes, it will be boring and it will look like I just posted the same routine–some products just take forever to empty up!!! However, I will write down some of the other products that I have used prior to this routine and after the last skincare routine that I have uploaded, just to keep things in order.

(related: Update: All-Korean Evening Skincare Routine)

MORNING ROUTINE

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  1. Oil CleanserBanila Co. Super Size Clean It Zero Cleansing Balm. This is actually a repurchase because I used the same oil cleanser before I started using the Jamong Cleansing Balm and the Etude House One Shot Sherbet Cleanser. I actually liked this balm better than the two other balms I have used, thus I decided to go back to this.
  2. Foam CleanseriSkin New York Deep Cleanser. After using the Cosrx Good Morning Low PH cleanser, I used the Banila Co. Clean It Zero Foam Cleanser for about a month before I started using this. There wasn’t anything wrong with the Banila Co. cleanser, it’s just that I had my face cauterized and my skincare clinic suggested that I use this cleanser for maintenance. I didn’t want to risk it thus I decided to buy this cleanser.
  3. TonerBenton Snail Bee High Content Skin. Yes. I still have this product with me. No complaints! Even though I’m not really sure what it does to my skin…
  4. EssenceCosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence.¬†Prior to this I had Nature Republic’s Honey Real Nature Essence, Etude House’s Honey Cera Essence, and as well as their Wonder Pore Tightening Essence. I’m not yet done with these essences from Etude House, but I decided to have a break from the both of them and use this Snail essence from Cosrx twice daily because it has been so wonderful to my skin and I feel like it will be more effective if I apply it daily. However, I’m still planning on using the essences from Etude House soon. Actually, I only use the pore tightening essence on the nose area which is why these two always come together. I might use both of them in the morning and then this essence from Cosrx in the evening after a few weeks.
  5. SerumIt’s Skin Power 10 Formula VC Effector.¬†I only had Dear Klairs’ Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop between this and the serum that I had in the last skincare routine that I posted.
  6. Eye CreamInnisfree Orchid Eye Cream.¬†I was supposed to use this for the evening to replace my Skinfood Salmon Brightening Eye Cream, but when I did, I noticed that my eyes weren’t getting any brighter. So I continued using my Skinfood eye cream in the evening and started using this orchid eye cream in the morning. Also, let me just say that this is totally perfect for morning use because it’s so easy to apply and it blends well with makeup.
  7. Oil – Organic Alley Rosehip Oil. Ooooooh! This is a new section. I am now introducing beauty oils to my skincare routine–as part of my skincare goals. So far, so good.
  8. Moisturizer – The Face Shop 99% Aloe Vera Gel. Before this, I was using the Nature Republic 92% Aloe Vera Gel but I ran out of it and I wasn’t able to order it online. This was the closest dupe that was locally available so I bought this instead. Needless to say, I still prefer the one from Nature Republic.
  9. Sun cream – Biore UV Perfect Face Milk SPF 50+ PA++++. I use a lot of sun creams. My choice depends on the event or the situation of the day. Whenever I’m at home, I usually just use the Belo SunExpert Face Cover SPF40 PA+++. But whenever I go out, I use this one from Biore.

This is not yet the perfect morning skincare routine for me. I have a love-hate relationship with the Organic Alley Rosehip Oil because it makes my face look really oily and it seems like it never absorbs into the skin, it just sits there the whole day. But ever since I added this oil in my routine, my skin has become more soft and flawless than ever!!!!!!! And I can really feel it after I wash my face and I haven’t applied anything to it yet, it feels great and it looks great and I’m totally in love with it (which makes me not want to do my skincare routine anymore because it’s freaking flawless!!! But I can’t not do my routine, of course. It’s the reason why it’s THAT flawless.)

I first applied it after my Aloe Vera Gel because I feel like it’s heavier than the gel, but then it started pilling. However, it does not leave an oily residue on my face. And then I tried applying it before the gel, and it feels like there’s no point of applying the gel anymore because the oil is too heavy, it seemed like I’m layering too much. But this time, there’s no pilling.

I’m not sure if it is my skin, or if it is my skincare line-up, or if it is the way I applied the rosehip oil and the aloe vera gel, but I really want to have rosehip oil in my routine. I had no problem with any oily residue or product pilling before I added the rosehip oil, so the center of this issue is my oil and how do I correctly apply it? There are a lot of other people out there who uses rosehip oil on their face on a daily basis that didn’t have any problem with it… but here I am. I’m thinking that it might be because the rosehip oil that I’m currently using isn’t cold pressed. But whatever the problem may be, I will find a way to solve it and I will have rosehip oil on my face. I will get both things I want. Lol.

EVENING ROUTINE

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  1. Oil Cleanser – Banila Co.’s Clean It Zero
  2. Foam Cleanser – iSkin New York Deep Cleanser
  3. Toner РEtude House Berry AHA! Bright Peel Boosting Serum. I know that the label says serum, but the product instructions say that I should use it like a toner, and so I did. (see full review here)
  4. Essence – Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence
  5. Serum – It’s Skin Power 10 Formula VE Effector.¬†I really didn’t have a serum on my night routine because I already had the Boosting Serum from Etude House. But when I bought this, I realized that Vitamin E is very much safe to use with AHA. Since then, I reintroduced serums in my night routine. (I’m already thinking of the next serum to buy as I type.)
  6. Eye Cream – Skinfood Salmon Brightening Eye Cream.¬†I’ve had this one since forever, and I don’t think I need another Eye Cream in the next few months. However, if you guys have suggestions, feel free to comment below. I honestly don’t know how to pick an eye cream.
  7. Emulsion РNature Republic Argan 20 Steam Emulsion. This is my second emulsion, ever. The Etude House Moistfull Collagen Emulsion lasted me one complete year, and I am hoping that this will also last a year, if not longer.
  8. Night Cream – Nella¬†Honey 1 Snail Ultra Moisture Cream Premium.¬†I also used my Nature Republic Aloe Vera gel in the evening, and when I ran out of it, I started using The Face SHop 99% Aloe Vera Gel. However, I wanted to change my night cream so I briefly went back to my very first sleeping mask, which is the Etude House Play Therapy Sleeping Mask. (see routine here) That mask had been with me since forever, and I thought that I don’t really need a firming mask that much, so I went and bought this cream from Althea. (see haul here)
  9. Lip Mask – Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask.¬†This lip mask has been with me since forever, and it smells so good, I am in love with it. I think I started using this around April last year, and I’m still barely halfway through the whole bottle. Totally worth the price, if you ask me.

This first phase of fulfilling my Skincare Goals for 2018 is more focused on adding Snail products in my routine, hence the Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence and the Nella Honey 1 Snail Ultra Moisture Cream Premium. I never really had the chance to incorporate Snail Mucin in my 2017 Skincare Routines except for the Benton Snail Bee High Content Skin and the occasional Snail sheet mask because all of the snail products that I wanted to have were always out of stock in Althea and BeautyMNL. Back then, having snail mucin in my routine was not really much of a goal, it’s more like something that I was willing to try (but I never got the chance lol). This year, since the occasional Snail sheet mask from Etude House has proven that Snail does indeed do wonders on my skin, I have decided that it should have more participation in my skincare routine. I actually feel like I have been missing a huge part of my Korean beauty obsession because I don’t have any snail mucin product.

Also, I currently have two It’s Skin Power 10 Formula Effectors in my skincare routines. I wanted to try the whole line on my skin because it looks so fun and colorful. However, trying the whole line isn’t really high on my priority list right now because I have an ideal skincare routine in my mind which involves more Cosrx, Klairs, and The Ordinary products. But if ever I need a certain serum and my first choice of serum is not in stock, I might go for another It’s Skin Power 10 Formula Effector instead.

For the second phase, I want to add more actives in my skincare routine. But I have to do it really slowly because I don’t want to traumatize my skin by having too many active products. I might start with what I’m familiar with first, which is a stronger Vitamin C serum, AHAs and BHAs. But to be honest, the second phase depends on what items are available in the market. Because I’m also looking at beauty oils, but I need to do more research about it seeing that my current rosehip oil is not that much of a delight to use (maybe it’s because of the products I used during the routine, because it absorbs perfectly when I massage it on my arm), but I have noticed some positive changes that can be attributed to that beauty oil.

And honestly, this AM/PM skincare routine isn’t the perfect skincare routine for me. But I really like what it’s doing to my skin.

Before I end this post, I would just like to remind everyone that I have a normal-dry skin type. My nose area is acne prone.

If any of you guys use beauty oils, please tell me how you incorporate it in your routines. Also, does it make your face look really shiny? Or does it absorb well? Comment down below!

XOXO,

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PRODUCT REVIEW: Etude House Berry AHA Bright Peel Boosting Serum

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And now we’re down to the first review of the year!

I have had this Berry AHA Bright Peel Boosting Serum from Etude House with me for more than 8 months already. I bought this after I ran out of my Cosrx Natural Skin Returning A-Sol, and I have used this as my main chemical exfoliant ever since.

(I just noticed that I would immediately run out of product during my first few months with skincare. A bottle would usually last me for about three months, and then I would need to find a replacement immediately. This may be due to the fact that I was still trying to repair my skin which led me to use more product than most skincare users would on an average–and since I was new, there were a lot of work to do. But after the first initial months, my skin tamed down and I didn’t need to use a lot of product anymore. I was then more focused on maintenance than repair.)

So, this boosting serum from Etude House contains AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) which is a chemical exfoliator that works to remove the dead skin cells on the surface of the skin. Thus, this helps in making the skin look younger and brighter. It also does a great deal in clearing up clogged pores which can reduce the appearance of whiteheads and acne.

HOW AND WHEN DO I USE IT?

I first started using this product every other night right after I cleanse as a toner. They might call it a serum, but chemical exfoliants are best used right after cleansing or toning. The box suggests that I use a cotton pad to apply this, but I simply use my hands to do so because I find the formulation of this product a bit thick to be used with a cotton pad with–I feel like more of the serum goes to the pad and not on my face. Despite not going with the instructions, I didn’t have any problem with this product.

After a few months, I started using this every night. I know that it is not advisable to use acids every day but I haven’t had complications with it for the past 6 months (I think?). It really depends on how your skin reacts to acids. If you have sensitive skin, you might want to do a patch test first to see if your skin has negative reactions whatsoever. By the way, I used to travel a lot and I don’t really bring this with me when I’m travelling, so my skin gets to have a break from this chemical exfoliant for a few days every now and then.

Aside from that, I don’t use this whenever I use my Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off¬†because over exfoliating may lead to irritation. I use my sugar mask 2-3 times a week (or whenever I feel like it, but I make sure that there’s at least two days in between when I want to use my sugar mask.) Also, I don’t use this in the same routine with my Vitamin C serum because it might also lead to over exfoliation and irritation.

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This is a lightweight serum that has consistency lighter than gel but definitely a whole lot thicker than water. It smoothly spreads on the face and it absorbs quickly, leaving a matte finish. I usually wait for a few minutes before I apply my next layer of skincare just to make sure than my skin has completely absorb the serum, and for it to have enough time to work its wonders on the skin.

WHAT ARE ITS EFFECTS ON THE SKIN?

It leaves my face feeling a lot cleaner and fresher every time I use this product. There are times that I travel for more than five days and when that happens, I actually start to miss this product because it just gives me that refreshing feeling that somehow reassures me that my pores are clean therefore I will not have pimples.

That’s it. Ever since I started using this serum, I noticed that I rarely get acne. I don’t get acne on the usual acne spots in my face and when I do get acne, it’s only during PMS. (I don’t really know what I can do about that, but at least I don’t get pimples as much as I do anymore!) Also, my face feels a lot more smoother. No more rough areas anymore except my nose area–which I must admit is requires more work and care than the rest of my face. I also feel like my face is a lot more firmer and healthier, thanks to this product.

I haven’t experienced any irritation and I don’t remember feeling any discomfort with this product.

By the way, I don’t know if it’s just me but this product doesn’t result to visible peeling. Which means I did not go through the process of having to remove a layer of dead skin off my face manually to reveal the newer skin beneath. This serum is very gentle and very safe as long as it is not overused (because it’s acid.)

I liked this AHA serum from Etude House but I don’t think it is something I will repurchase. However, I still recommend this for everyone especially for those who has dry to normal skin types and for those who are acne prone.

I hope you enjoyed this review and this has helped you in any way.

Until next time,

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My First BeautyMNL (mini) Haul + fulfilling my 2018 Skincare Goals

Would you believe????

The first time I ever purchased anything from BeautyMNL was March 2017. Since then, I have been browsing that online shop from time to time, adding and removing things from my cart, but I was never able to proceed to checkout until this January.

(related:My First Ever BeautyMNL Purchase + Newly-launched Mobile App)

The primary reason why I don’t shop that much in BeautyMNL was because last year, I was a huge Korean skincare junkie and it was so much easier to narrow down my Korean Skincare shopping with a Korea-based online shop (a.k.a. Althea Korea).

This year, however, I came up with skincare goals that includes having local products on my routine. Therefore, I think my relationship with BeautyMNL will be a lot more tighter this year. I just actually added a lot of products on my BeautyMNL wishlist, and even though 90% of them were still Korean skincare products, at least I wasn’t closing my cart to just Korean goodies. I also added a hell lot of items from Skin Genie (they’re so cheap!) and other local brands, but before I proceed to checkout, I will have to study these items first and check out reviews online.

Speaking of Skincare goals, this haul was entirely inspired by it. I only bought three items, but not only will they help me fulfill my skincare goals, but I know that they will also play a huge part in my 2018 skincare routines(because there will be more than one, duh.)

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Organic Alley Rosehip Oil – This is actually one of the reasons why I was so eager to hit the checkout button this time (in contrast to all the other times I had in 2017), I have been doing research on beauty oils and Rosehip Oil is definitely the oil that I have been looking for. It helps with scar healing–which is one of the most said comments regarding my nose and chin area (they are not really noticeable, except if you put my face in really bright light and under a magnifying glass.) aside from that, it has anti-aging properties that I don’t really need that much right now, but it’s better to start early. Organic Alley is also a local brand, so this product just hit the right boxes for me.

(related: 2018 Skincare Goals (also, BEFORE and AFTER skincare photos of me!))

Cosrx AHA Whitehead Power Liquid – I have known Cosrx ever since I started doing skincare and I wasn’t really interested with this product up until lately. I stumbled upon an article in the internet that says this exfoliator can help in reducing little bumps on the face and I was immediately sold. It was just in time because I’m almost out of my current AHA product, and I am guessing that this power liquid is going to be a good replacement.

It’s Skin Power 10 VE Formula Effector – While I was doing research about skincare ingredients that’s good for the skin, a lot of the sites that I found in Google said Vitamin E is really good for my skin, which reminded me of my beloved Vitamin E moisturizer from the Body Shop. (Product Review: The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Sorbet) It was one of my very first moisturizers and it has done an amazing job in making my face really soft. I was also looking for a new serum that’s not really complicated–one that I can just throw in my routine without worrying about it reacting badly with another layer of product that might cause irritation and all other types of skincare disasters. Also, I’m really looking forward to trying out this line from It’s Skin so I guess this is a perfect choice for me.

(see also: Althea New Year Skincare Haul (2018))

It took me weeks to finally get my shit together and make a purchase in BeautyMNL, but what really motivated me to proceed to checkout were the freebies. They were giving out Dear Klairs samples!!!!

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Who doesn’t love dear Klairs? I have only used one product from their brand (Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop) and it has completely changed my skincare game. (read review here) It is one of my holy grail products and I love it so much that it has made me believe in the whole brand even though it was the only one I have ever tried from them. But I have watched Youtube reviews of other Dear Klairs products and everyone is crazy about it. And I think that having the opportunity to get samples is something I shouldn’t miss. Because you know, there are products out there that everyone loves but it’s just not for you–and I hope to god that these products are for me. I guess I’ll have to try these four in different times so I’ll be able to see the full result of each one of them… and maybe I’ll write something about it here… just wait for it. Haha.

So that concludes my very first BeautyMNL haul–by the way, if you’re wondering why my title says (mini) it’s because I usually buy 4 or more items to consider it a haul, and there’s only three in this shopping adventure. However, I’m happy with the things that I got and I’m pretty much sure I’ll be back to buy more skincare from BeautyMNL.

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and I’ll see you guys in my next haul!

XOXO,

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My Lip Care Routine (2018)

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ADVANCED HAPPY VALENTINES DAY GUYS!

Today is February 13, 2018 in my country and I think posting something about lip care would totally be fitting for the coming event tomorrow. *wink* *wink*

Everybody’s been obsessing over their own skincare routines and posting them online, but I rarely do see any post or Youtube video about taking care of the lips. For someone like me who thought that I had perpetually dry and chapped lips, finding a solution to my lip problem is indeed a struggle. Over the past year, I have tried several lip products, because I was looking for the best lip balm, lip mask, and lip scrub for me, hoping that one day, I will be able to find the best set of lip products that will give me those plump, moisturized, and healthy lips I have always dreamed about.

It’s so difficult to be uncomfortable with your own lips and since I’m already into skincare, I also took the time and effort to do research on how to take care of the lips. And the products pictured above has helped me improve the condition of my lips.

Aritaum Ginger Sugar Lip Scrub – I use this product before I start my whole skincare routine, and especially when I have used a liptint or a lipstick. It really helps in removing the pigmentation without rubbing too hard, and at the same time it helps in removing the dead skin cells on the lips. I’m the type of girl who feels the need to swipe lip balm on my lips every two hours or so, and you know, if I don’t get rid of all that balm on my lips by the end of the day, it’s going to dry up and it’s going to feel really clogged up and next thing I know, my lips are already cracking. Thus, whenever I feel like I put too much product on my lips, I use this lip scrub before I brush my teeth and start with my skincare routine. (see full review here)

Lucas’ Papaw Ointment – I have heard of this ointment several times and a lot local celebrities here in the Philippines has this product, so when my friend from Nudie Organics (IG @nudieorganics) told me that they’re selling this, I immediately ordered two. It has been really helpful in healing my chapped lips. Although I have read that this is just an ointment and it should not be used as a lip balm or a moisturizer, I still incorporate this with my daily routine, especially before I apply my lip balm because it really did wonders on my dry lips and it has helped regain its normal texture. I apply this on my lips after I brush my teeth and reapply it at least twice a day.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr. Rescue Lip Balm – I picked this up at Robinsons Dumaguete when my lips felt really dry and I forgot to bring a lip balm with me. I immediately went to Watsons and purchased two lip balms (I wanted to buy everything, to be honest!) and one of them was this. Out of the two, this was the one I first used. I had mixed feelings with it at first because I love how this has a cooling effect on the lips, but I wasn’t a big fan of the scent… it reminds me of Vicks. But later on I got used to it and this became my go-to lip balm. I use this before my liptint in the morning. In the evening, I would usually apply this on my lips whenever I need to use a mud mask or a sheet mask, or whenever there’s a skincare step that needs some time before I proceed to the next step.

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask – I totally, totally, totally love this lip mask, especially the scent! IT IS HEAVENLY. I have been using this for around 10 months already, I think. And it has helped me a lot inreganing the moisture of my lips. I would apply this before I get to bed.

I really didn’t plan this up nor did I do any research about lip care routines whatsoever, I just did what I think would be good for my lips and then I realized later on that it is actually a routine. And I wanted to share this to the internet if ever there are girls out there who struggles with dry or sore lips. I hope this post helped you and thanks for stopping by!

XOXO,

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2018 Skincare Goals (also, BEFORE and AFTER skincare photos of me!)

Hey guys! I’m here to share my 2018 goals for my beloved skin. Over the Christmas break and the whole month of January, I had ample time to reflect and evaluate myself and my skincare routine. I have been watching videos in Youtube about some people trying out the 10-step Korean Skincare routine for a week or two, and some of them noticed visible changes immediately. Since I have been religiously doing my skincare routine for a year now, just like these Youtube bloggers, I have noticed the changes in my skin too—but that does not mean that I don’t have skin issues any more. I still have a few problems to deal with, and watching those videos has inspired me to go on with my skincare routine this year and to become more attentive when it comes to choosing the products that I use so that they can effectively help me in eliminating or lessening my skin concerns.

During the first few months when I started strengthening my focus on skincare, I have noticed a dramatic change in my skin. However, as months passed by, I just started getting used to my new skin that I don’t even notice the changes that much, which sometimes made me think that my skincare isn’t helping me that much. You know that feeling when you tend to forget what you have because you’re so used to having it already? That’s somehow what I felt especially when I still see my skin troubles seemingly obvious on my face. However, the constant unsolicited compliments from family and friends saying that my skin looked so much better gave the constant validation that I needed. Also, I have become this person that people go to when they have skincare questions or such which made me have this confidence with what I’m doing. These people believed in me, thus, I shall also believe in myself.

But that confidence and belief is not fooling me. I still have skincare concerns that I would like to address. Last year may have eliminated more than half of my problems, thus, this year, I will try to get rid of my remaining skin concerns and try out other skincare practices that I haven’t tried this year yet.

Here’s a photo of me before trying out Korean Skincare:

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This photo was taken October 2016. I just had my hair rebonded (hence the “dooooonneee” caption)

Here’s a photo of me 11 months into Korean Skincare:

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I was inside a fitting room, and honestly, the lighting was good.

Have you noticed the difference between the two?

 

Looking at my October 2016 selfie, I honestly thought I looked good in that photo when I posted it a year ago. But right now, even before I saw my current photos, I just cringe at the confidence I had when I posted it.

Now, I’m pretty much aware that both photos were taken in different lighting and different situations. but I doubt that my skin would ever look that dull and lifeless if I took a selfie right now.

(see also: A compilation of my Skincare Routines posted in this blog)

(disclaimer: I did not undergo a nose lift. I purposely angled my face like that so my nose would look better.)

Seeing these before and after photos of my face and based on my own observations. My year of skincare has done the following to me:

  • It brightened up my skin. It looks more alive and healthy. Before, I would always feel like my face is dull and I look dead, but now, even on my most tiring days, I feel like I still look fresh and alive whenever I look at the mirror.
  • My acne scars has disappeared. I really didn’t care much about my acne scars, to be honest I didn’t really notice them before. But looking at my old photos made me realize their existence in my life… and I am more than thankful that they are gone now.
  • I don’t get as much acne as I used to. And when I do, they don’t stay for much long. Before, getting rid of an acne is really a problem for me. During my first few months into skincare, my acne problem was really something I had a huge focus on. Well, to be honest, I don’t really get a lot of acne, but yknow, if you’re trying to make your face flawless, a little pimple can be a huge bummer. I was able to finish three bottles of The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Oil (see review here) in the first few months of 2017 became pimples just keep on appearing on my face. But later on, they slowed down and they don’t really stay for much long. I actually bought a fourth bottle of Tea Tree Oil from The Body Shop around May last year, and I never really got to use it that much so it ended up with my sister. I think my regular chemical exfoliation, and trips to the facial spa has a huge participation in keeping my acne at bay.
  • My skin became more softer.¬†It wasn’t generally rough before. But I noticed that it became more supple and it felt more gentle.
  • I don’t flake that much anymore.¬†I have combination dry skin, which means my T-zone area can sometimes become really dry when it’s cold. And when that happens, my nose area would flake. In the last six months, I didn’t experience any flaking at all even though the temperature is really cold.
  • Less redness. If there was girl human version of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, that would be me. I don’t actually remember a time when my nose area wasn’t red before I invested into skincare. Now, redness isn’t an issue at all!
  • Eyebags became less prominent. They’re still there, and they still get dark at times. But they’re not as horrifying as they were before. I don’t recall anyone telling me that I looked tired or I looked like I lacked sleep in the past few months.
  • Fine lines were reduced. Or their appearance gradually slowed down. I don’t know. But given all the stress that the past year have given me, it is a miracle that I still look my age. I’m only in my early 20s so fine lines and wrinkles are not really an issue for me, but I still want to mention the fact that my skin just felt really great and young and there wasn’t a day when I worried about my wrinkles whenever I was doing my skincare routine–I just realized that there was a point in my life when I was freaked out about the lines forming in my forehead, but now? They’re not so freaky anymore.

(read:Best of My 2017 Skincare (Blogversary Post!))

So, those are the main things that I have noticed in my skin for the past year. I am really grateful that I became more conscious about my face and I have discovered the 10-step Korean Skincare Routine, because if it wasn’t for skincare, then my life would probably be dull and honestly, I wouldn’t be very happy about my existence.

I’m very satisfied with what my 2017 skincare adventure has done to my skin, however, there are still areas that needs a little more love. If you would look closely at my September 2017 photo, you would notice that it isn’t really that flawless–there are some bumps and dark spots that needs to be taken care of. And this year, I will make sure of that.

Here are my 2018 skincare goals:

  • Focus on taking good care of my nose area.¬†My nose is my most hated part of my face. It is one of the main reasons why I started investing in Korean Skincare and it is still the reason why I am not that confident in taking selfies. I have been to several skincare clinics for facials, and they would always say something about my nose. However, they’d say that it isn’t really obvious or visible so I shouldn’t be really bothered, but I am bothered. I went to a Belo clinic for a facial once and the girl who did my facial discouraged me from having anything done. However, my latest facial at SM MOA Flawless had me thinking. The girl kept on telling me things about the pores on my nose and such that it stuck on my head. So now, all I want to do is to focus on making it look better. I really didn’t invest on blackhead/whitehead removal that much last year save for the occasional facial and daily AHA. But this year, I will try to be more religious with using nose strips and nose masks.
  • Get rid of the bumps, redness, and sunspots on my face.¬†they’re not as prominent as before, but they’re still there. And if there’s a way where I can make my skin better, I will try.
  • Try more local products.¬†They’re generally cheaper than most skincare products, and¬† lot of them are organic. I trust that Filipino brands are good too, they’re just not as recognized as other skincare brands because it isn’t really something that the Philippines is known for.
  • Invest in beauty oils. One of the things that I wish I should have been last 2017 was to be more aware of beauty oils and other skincare ingredients. So, this year I will try to do my best to be more familiar with beauty oils and to start investing on them. I currently have Tea Tree Oil, Argan Oil, and Castor Oil in my stash and they have been wonderful to me, so I’m thinking of expanding my collection this year.
  • Take more care of my lip balm-dependent lips.¬†I cannot live a day without lip balm because my lips always feel dry, or sometimes they have this weird texture that I really can’t explain but only lip scrubs can successfully get rid of. This year, I really want my lips to feel normal–something that wouldn’t make me want to run to the drugstore and buy a lip balm just because I didn’t bring any and my lips were starting to feel weird (this happened, srsly.) Anyway, I’ve been trying this lip care routine for some time now, it’s something that I do when I’m doing my skincare as well and I’m posting about it soon so I hope you guys can read it!

This is a really lengthy post and I honestly don’t know if anyone will be patient enough to read everything from top to bottom. But I really had a good time writing this because this whole post is basically my skincare past, present, and future. I just hope that my future will be bright, supple, and flawless. Wish me luck!

XOXO,

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Althea New Year Skincare Haul (2018)

Hey guys! Another Happy New Year post! I know my recent posts were long overdue, but please bear with me. I have a lot of things to post about, but I don’t want to crowd everything in one go. So, I decided to come up with one blog post per week. In this way, I’ll have ample time to think of blogging ideas and to try other products that I can review.

Anyway, I ordered this box last December 28, 2017 when I was still in Dumaguete. I had it sent to my home address in Davao, so I was not really able to get a hold of this box until last January 14. I was in Manila during the first week of 2018 and I went back to Dumaguete on the second week of the year, and I wasn’t really sure when the box would arrive because I expected that there will be delays because of the holidays, thus, I thought that it would be better if my box will be sent to my home instead. Also, this is actually the second Althea Box that was sent to my house, I would normally just pick it up in my nearest LBC branch, but I think Althea changed their courier with one that does not have any business to do with LBC hence my last two boxes before this had a different “claiming” situation. The first one, I had to pick it up on their office itself. And the second box that I wanted to pick up at LBC was delivered to my current location instead– as in like, they called me and asked me where I was–because they can’t leave my package in LBC.

Okay, so enough of that delivery background story, and let’s focus back on my latest Althea box:

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I was actually contemplating if I should buy new skincare stuff from Althea because I wasn’t so sure if I wanted to buy stuff online, or if I should just go skincare shopping in Manila instead. However, seeing that the two items that I have been wanting since forever are available and the new limited edition Happy New Year box sold me. I went and made my final Althea purchase for 2017 at around 2 AM, when I was lying in my bed in a hotel room in Dumaguete, supposedly asleep like everyone else.

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(please ignore my ugly nails huhu)

So, the Althea Happy New Year Box comes with this 2018 table calendar and a happy New Year card that comes with a coupon code for a 5% discount (why so frugal? Huhu)

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If can remember correctly, they were more generous with their discount angpao last year, I think it was a 10% off–which made me hurry back to Althea’s website and buy my next Althea box. It became a cycle for months–a cycle that I honestly didn’t regret even though almost all of my paycheck goes to skincare.

(related: Althea Korea Skincare Haul)

(see also: My Althea Korea Hauls)

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In the above-photo is everything that I bought for this Althea Korea box. I have already taken off all the bubble wraps and pink paper thingies that they usually put for added protection and creativity. If you are new to Althea Korea and you have no idea what I’m talking about, just check out my previous hauls and you’ll get what I mean.

If you have been paying attention to this blog, you might have noticed that I haven’t posted any Althea haul for a long time. The last time that I ordered products from Althea Korea was over six months ago. After that, I would just buy my products from nearby stores whenever I run out of something, or if I’m in Manila, I would go skincare shopping on stores that are not locally available in Davao.

(related: May 2017 Althea Korea Haul (Also, where was I the past few days?))

(related: Banila Co., Tony Moly and Nature Republic Skincare Haul 2017)

This Althea haul was something I have been thinking of for a few months now. And to be honest, buying from the local stores are not as fulfilling as getting a box of skincare in the mail. And it actually feels good to have a set of things that I can see beauty gurus in youtube and other beauty bloggers review and rave about. For the past few months, I only relied on my instincts whenever I’m buying a skincare product. But this box finally gave me the happiness of knowing that the product is good even before I tried it.

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So this box has 7 skincare products in it, and I will explain why I bought each and every one of them.

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence – I have been fully aware of the wonders of snail mucin ever since I delved into Korean Skincare. I have also known and wanted to own this product ever since day 1 but it’s always out of stock. I have been using Korean skincare products for a year now but I really felt like my Korean skincare journey wasn’t enough yet because I haven’t tried this essence yet. Now, having this baby in my shelf just gives me that fulfillment that I can’t even explain.

Skinfood Rice Mask Wash Off – I have always wanted to try this exfoliant as well. But I didn’t want to buy something new when I still had my Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off. I guess it was just my lucky day when I was placing my order because I’m almost out of my black sugar mask and this happens to be available. Guys, if you shop at Althea, you know how hard it is to buy best sellers there. Everything is simply out of stock. So I’m glad I was able to catch this baby before it sells out.

Aida Cosmetic Wonder Sugar Lip Scrub and Wonder Butter Lip Mask –¬†Of all the items in this box, these two are the only products that I weren’t really familiar of. I just found them in the search bar and decided to buy both lip products. I originally just wanted a lip scrub because I’m almost out of my current Aritaum Ginger Sugar Lip Scrub,¬†and I really need a lip scrub for the sake of my lips. I decided to buy the mask along with it for fun. After all, one of my skincare goals for this year is to give more love to my lips (by using skincare products, of course! What were you thinking?)

It’s Skin Power 10 Formula VC Effector¬†– I was actually surprised I got two of these… but then I remembered that it was in a 1+1 daebak promo, so I’m really thankful I have two products because I don’t really know when I’ll run out of it then I’ll have to worry about finding my next Vitamin C serum. Anyway, I’m really excited to try this product because I know for a fact that Vitamin C does wonders to my skin. If you have read my Dear Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop review, you’ll know that I worship that serum from Dear Klairs… so you’re probably wondering why I bought this one instead of repurchasing. I bought It’s Skin’s Vitamin C serum for experiment. I simply wanted to know if this product will do my skin good as much as my other Vitamin C products did. And, I’m actually thinking of buying more items from the Power 10 Formula Effector line. I don’t know about you guys, but products in the dropper form has an appeal to me, like, I want them all in my face. Lol. And before I start hoarding all the Power 10 products from It’s Skin, I think starting off with this one will be a good start.

Nella Honey Snail Ultra Moisture Cream – honestly, this wasn’t really my first choice. I really wanted the Cosrx Snail Mucin Cream, but it’s out of stock and I really wanted a new moisturizer. This one sounded good to me because I want something that has Snail Mucin in it and I have always loved Honey in my skincare. I’m not really familiar with this, but I’m positive that this will be something that I’ll love.

Okay, so that’s all for this Althea Haul. I’m really happy with this set of products and I’m really hoping that this year will be a good year to my skin. Last year, I was successfully able to eliminate almost all of my skincare problems. So this year, I’m just kind of focusing on the little things that needs more attention. I will write an entire post about my skincare goals for this year, hopefully I will be able to publish it less than a month after posting this haul. Anyway, stay tuned for that and thank you for reading!

XOXO,

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Bench Organics Haul

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Hey guys! My first haul post for 2018! I actually bought these items on the last week of 2017. And to be honest, these items sparked my interest in exploring local beauty products.

So, I was in Mactan Cebu International Airport when I first saw these organic products from Bench. I already got curious because it’s something new, and it’s something that I’d like to try. However, I didn’t buy anything yet because I’m at the airport on my way to Dumaguete and I really didn’t want to bring too many hand-carried items/bags with me on the plane. I bought these products at Robinsons Place Dumaguete shortly after.

By the way, if you do not know what Bench is, Bench is an international clothing brand from the Philippines that also sells a few beauty products. I’m not really sure as to when they launched Bench Organics, but I go to a Bench store at least once a month and last month was the first time I saw these products on their shelves.

I will explain more as I go through the products I bought so here they are:

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Bench Organics Argan Oil from Morocco

This was actually the product that really caught my eye. As you guys know, I’ve been trying to find the perfect products for my hair because I’m trying to make it less dependent of salon treatments. I have tried several drugstore shampoos that has Argan Oil on them and they worked perfectly on my hair. Now, I know this bottle of Argan Oil from Bench Organics is more geared to be used on the skin, but since it’s just an oil and the bottle also indicated that it can be used for the hair (it’s on the back, btw, idk why this photo looks entirely different from my other shots but please forgive my inconsistency) so I got myself a bottle. I also use it as a body oil if I feel like it, but I really bought this oil for my hair.

(related: Watsons Hair Care Haul)

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Bench Organics 92% Aloe Face & Body Mist

(I lost the cap of this huhu sorry) Buying this wasn’t really part of the plan because I only meant to buy the Argan Oil. However, I realized that I don’t really own a mist yet, I bought one before but I can’t find it anymore. Thus, I decided to get this bottle. I know for a fact that Aloe Vera is good for my skin and I thought that having a mist will be helpful especially when I need to awaken my senses when I feel sleepy or tired.

(related: Nature Republic 92% Aloe Vera Gel Review)

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Bench Organics spf 50+ pa+++ Aloe Cool Sunblock

I was actually contemplating if I should get this sunblock because I already have a lot of sun creams. However, I don’t have a spray-type one and I thought that this would be convenient for reapplying sunscreen. You know, I don’t really follow the “re-apply your sunscreen every two hours” rule because I find it too tedious especially when I have makeup on–like, I have to re-do my makeup if I want to reapply my sunscreen every two hours and who has time for that? Which is why I decided to get this product. Because with this spray sunblock, I don’t have to massage the product on my face after spraying it on. I just have to pat it until my skin absorbs the product and I’m done. There’s less risk of ruining my blush and other makeup (although I only use blush most of the time.) I’ve actually started using this already. As soon as I wake up, I grab this sunblock and spray it on my face before breakfast because I’m too lazy to do my morning routine yet. It’s the most convenient sunscreen that I have ever had yet. I’m not sure if it is as effective as other SPF products (who really knows, anyway?) but I find comfort in knowing the fact that I applied sunblock before facing the sun.

I don’t really know if there are other Bench Organics products out there because these three were the only items that I was able to see in the Robinsons Dumaguete branch. And since I had enough Christmas money to buy all three, that’s what I did! Haha. I can’t really say if I will be looking forward to trying the other products from Bench Organics because I’m not really a big fan of the brand (but I don’t hate them!), but I might probably buy other products from the same brand if I find it interesting or useful for me. It really depends. But so far, these items that I have shown you guys hasn’t disappointed me and I have been using them every day ever since I first opened the product.

I hope you guys found this post helpful. And for my fellow Filipinos out there who can easily access these products, go ahead and try them! Let’s support our own products!

That’s all for today and I hope you enjoyed reading this post! Till then,

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