Sunday, February 15, 2009

BRUSH LOVE <3: An in-depth look at my obsession



Too Faced

As the hair stylist in Sean Connery's 1996 film "The Rock" said, "No scissors? Did they tell Picasso 'no brush?'"...

I guess the saying "You can never have too much of a good thing" applies for my said situation. I am slowly building up my own makeup collection (which I believe is WAY too late for my age! Should have started at 16!) which is composed of my favorite brands: Smashbox (personal fave), The Body Shop, MAC, Max Factor, Too Faced, Philosophy and (hopefully) NARS. But from a very strange realization, I noticed that my splurge focuses on my investment on makeup brushes. I guess there's that search for the "ideal set" as most beauty bloggers rant about. I have at least 3 now: Suesh 5-Piece Set (my first), Smashbox Rapture Travel Set (the one I use most often...from my dad), and EcoTools 5-Piece Set (which will arrive soon). I have recently ordered the Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair Set from my uncle at Sephora Canada. Each product has their equal pros and cons, ranging from price, to material, to effectiveness when color and use is concerned. Call me hoarder and an idiot, but I'd stand by this obsession. As a pal of mine told me before, "at least it's not drugs!"

What's with the obsession? You could spend $60 on several sets of palettes and shadows! Why spend on the tools? Because if the tools suck, the colors on your face will suck too.

THE SEARCH ~ Have you found the Holy Grail of them all?

No. I haven't.

Reading reviews from other consumers helps me in choosing which to bite on with the limited resources that I have. For example, I like one brush from Shu Uemura, but then just one costs as much as an entire set of Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair. Some one would probably call me stupid for choosing Jarrod Blandino (I love you, Jarrod! You are a heavensent!) and his sexy brand over makeup genius Uemura. But based on my criteria and personal quirks (if you'd call it that), I'd choose Too Faced since it's synthetic and antibacterial, unlike those made of natural fibers. I get more for my money, as well as my undying love of animals.

Why spend on something high end when you can purchase a cheap brand from the department store? DON'T BE SO METICULOUS!

In my own twisted perspective, the material and composition of the item also sways my decision on splurge vs. save on brushes. As the article on Look Magazine's December 2008 issue says, the workings of an expensive, branded brush has an effect on how much color it deposits on your face. Also, for people like me who have sensitive skin, cheap brands that have natural hairs often scratch your skin, creating burrows where bacteria can deposit. So far, I've lived with natural hairs and the very subtle pain that comes with the scratching. Ouch.

People tend to have varying opinions on different products, depending on how it works for them. I may have a positive word for said set, but others may think otherwise. So until I try one prize at a time for myself, the quest shall continue.

Until then, ciao amore.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

CHICK LIST January -- April

I'm in full saving mode, saving PhP1000 a week and depositing them into my account. My mom's happy that I'm doing just that, and I like to spend a very small fraction of my earnings on makeup. :) So now, here's my Chick List for January to April (which is my birth month!).

Too Faced 'Teddy Bear Hair' Brush Set

I got a glimpse of this baby while surfing around, and the first thing that clicked in my head was 'gotta save for it!' And since this thing is so darned expensive (even for me!), my uncle who's coming home from Canada this March will be ordering it on my behalf and I'll be paying him in return! So no more shipping and tax! I'll be able to save approximately PhP1,000 from that. This is the birthday present I'll be giving to myself in April. My cousin however, will be getting the kabuki brush. :) Solely for my travel endeavors with the great extra space in the case for all my other makeup. ^^

EcoTools 5-Piece Brush Set

I've ordered this from sis Zhandra Dy-Tan (along with Philosophy's The Supernatural Mineral Blush Duo...I am crazy about Supernatural!) the moment I fell in love with this synthetic environmental cosmetic heavensent! I'm happily waiting for the arrival of this item, and will quickly write a review for this one! My perfect set for while I'm trapped in the campus for touch-ups.

Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush Lip Glosses

A friend of mine was given a VS Beauty Rush Lip Gloss in Slice of Heaven by her mom, and gave me some...and I liked it! So she sold me one in Cupquake and it smells like marshmallows! I've also ordered Strawberry Fizz from another pal of mine. :D Reviews await!

MAC Blot Powder/Pressed

For the victims of the oily menace! A classmate of mine uses this for her own visage and appears to work very well with her! I plan to try this out for myself, since Maybelline Clear Smooth doesn't seem to function as well as it should...*sigh*

Friday, January 23, 2009

Celebrity Collage by MyHeritage

MyHeritage: Family tree - Genealogy - Celeb - Collage - Morph

SWAG BAG Future Hauls + My Look-a-Likes

I usually celebrate victories from exams through shopping. I guess that's just me! Haha! But yeah, I'm looking forward to my soon-to-be hauls for my Swag Bag!

I've placed pre-orders for ECOTOOLS 5-piece brush set (after such a long time!) and PHILOSOPHY The Supernatural Mineral Blush Duo (in Pink/Bronze) to Zhandra Dy-Tan, and am awaiting her quote for them. :) After said purchases, I'll probably get an ECOTOOLS blush brush (a separate one for my makeup kit in school) and the PHILOSOPHY The Supernatural Mineral Foundation (which I wanted since I first saw it at Beauty Bar...).


I got my celeb look-a-likes and I'm glad to say I'm flattered to have Audrey Tautou and Grace Kelly! And I'm not surprised that a couple of Chinese actresses are on the list because my family from my father's side has roots from mainland China. :)

**NOTE: Mrs. Zhandra Dy-Tan takes pre-orders of US items for customers in the Philippines. So visit her Multiply account @ :)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

TIGHT LIPPED ; smashbox o-gloss

I've never been a lip gloss nut as much as I've been a blush/bronzer and brush maniac. I guess I can count the number of glosses I've had in one hand since my obsession about makeup started. Probably 4. But now, one lip gloss has stolen my heart: SMASHBOX O-GLOSS.

My Smashbox O-Gloss against the top of my Twilight boxset... :)

I was intrigued by O-Gloss when I first saw it at the pages of Candy Magazine's December issue. It took quite a search to get my own tube of the much coveted Holy Grail of lipslicks because they're always out of stock. I couldn't believe the way they were advertising the product, that it transformed your kisser to a unique shade of pink depending on your skin's chemistry. It seemed out of this world! But I did have the urge to try it.

So last Sunday when I went to Mall of Asia again, I ran to Beauty Bar before my parents and I had dinner. As I mentioned in the previous post, I was surprised that it became a bit more expensive than before. But being me, I dished out the cash, and couldn't wait to slather some of that baby on my lips. So here's my verdict:


1.) It REALLY works! I was in awe that my pale lips suddenly turned into a shade of bright pink! My mom even asked me if I had put on lip stick, and I told her I didn't! Within a span of a minute, the product starts taking effect, and your jaw will literally drop at the results.


1.) It's a wallet buster. Nivea balm/gloss costs about 1/10 of the price of this baby. O-Gloss comes in a very small package, so it's a shame that it runs out easily when you use it everyday.
Final Verdict: 5/5 in my Swag Bag!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Week's Swag Bag! ; Twilight Saga Box Set + Smashbox O-Gloss

Okie, it's past midnight, and no pictures yet because the battery for my mom's camera decided to go 'pfft'. So pics will be uploaded tomorrow night. :)

It's been a great yet stressful week due to my exams. But my dad totally made up for it because now I have the Twilight Saga Box Set!!! *GUH* I've waited for months for a new one to arrive, and my dad was so fortunate to grab the LAST ONE! (Much like the Smashbox Rapture Brush Set! Haha!) I'm so very happy, and my friend offered to buy my paperback version of the series. :D

Besides the gargantuan Twilight books, I went to Mall of Asia today to attend a seminar for nurses held by Ms. Joyce Black PhD, RN. We sat there from 9 AM to 4 PM listening to lectures on how to pass the NCLEX exams in the future after graduation. After declaring that we could all leave the premises, I made a mad dash with a male friend to Beauty Bar to grab myself the Holy Grail of all lip gloss:

I finally have my own tube of the SMASHBOX O-GLOSS!!! Yes!!!
It certainly cost a pretty penny aquiring it since they only had limited stocks left, and the prices have increased. From PhP959, it's now PhP1,050. But I was willing to hock up the cash for it since O-Gloss has gotten great reviews for its amazing effects on the lips. And they weren't lying! Once I applied it, I saw my lips turn into the most amazing shade of pink! I didn't have to put on lipstick! It's a purse must-have for every girl, and I didn't mind busting my wallet for this. *bounces*

I'm definitely getting a new one once mine runs out! :)

Review will be posted tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

TIP OF THE DAY ; brush care 101

Okay, I'm currently taking a break from studying to have some of the beef and mushroom my aunt made. I swear, they're the best this planet has ever had. Haha.
So now, I'm posting a little something I've learned now that I'm gaga for all things makeup, especially brushes. I have an affinity somehow! With my Smashbox Rapture brushes (which are still in the plastic within the box!), I'm off to getting the Eco Tools 5-piece set and the Mineral Makeup brush set. (Sidenote: My friend Nikka wasn't able to get her hands on them when I asked her to buy me some because they ran out in the THREE Target stores she went to in Houston. I told her it was okay, so our neighbor's son is ordering for me at
All of us who own blushes, powders, and eyeshadows obviously have brushes to apply the makeup. But like us they also deserve some cleaning up after days, weeks, months, or even years of use. We might think that the breakouts that we've been having on our skin is because of the powders. But little do we know, our brushes may be the culprit. Bacteria, dead skin, and debris from makeup are trapped in the bristles, especially of those made with animal hair. Cuticles in natural hair trap these impurities, and without regular washing can irritate and cause formation of acne.
For the seasoned makeup buffs, they have their own methods of cleaning their brushes. Shen from Shen's Addiction formulated her own brush cleaner, which I found very ingenious! :) But for someone like me who doesn't have time for pretty much anything, I have my own way of busting dirty brushes real quick.
1.) Gather your dirty brushes and poise them bristles down under running water.
*If this is done bristles up, the water might weaken the adhesive effect of the glue hidden in the ferrule and cause the hair to shed over time.
2.) Pour the proper amount of mild baby shampoo or mild soap on your fingers and lather on the bristles of the brush. I use Johnson's Baby Shampoo because it only has a faint scent and is very affordable. Plus, it has done wonders for my brushes!
3.) Then wash off the remnants of the shampoo/soap from the brush heads until no color remains on the water cast-off. Flick your brushes to remove any excess water and gently pat with paper towel/tissue.
4.) Rest brushes on a clean towel, or hang with bristles down at a well-ventilated area if you wish to have them dry off faster. It depends on the thickness of the hairs whether it dries quickly or not.
* Drying by hanging with bristles down maintains the shape of your brushes. If it were bristles up, the hairs of powder, blush, or stipling brushes will furl out and lose their density. Based on personal experience! Haha!
According to Essential Beauty Supplies, brush cleaning musn't be cleaned everyday. Here's their suggested time table:
Foundation Brushes: Minimum of once a week
Powder Brushes: Once a week
Blush Brushes: Once a week
Eyeshadow Brushes: Every 2-3 days
Liner Brushes: Every after use (especially if sealants are being applied)
Hope that was useful information!