Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Paul & Joe Goodies

I haven't blogged much about my favorite makeup brand Paul & Joe, you want to know why?  I'll share you my tiny little secret.  Paul & Joe have sales every now and then in makeup schools or fairs, and the "cheapskates" in me would hoard during sales and I ended up with 2 of each product that I use.  Well, 3 refills of my favorite Paul & Joe Protective Dual Powder Foundation to be exact, in which I finished up 2 and I'm on my 3rd *taking a mental note to hoard more once they have sale!*

Thankfully, after a year plus of hiatus with this brand, I've finally reunited with the brand again with 2 tiny addition to my Paul & Joe family....

Paul & Joe Lipstick C and Paul & 
Joe Creamy Matte Foundation

I own the Paul & Joe Light Cream Foundation in the past which me and my best friend absolutely love for its very "natural" effect with light to medium coverage! I tend to reach out to this for myself or for clients who has normal skin with not much coverage needed for that "very natural Korean Makeup" glow. 

If you read my previous review regarding the foundation, I love how chic and classy the packaging look but I've complained about the huge opening of this and it is unhygienic to dip your sponge, brush or even fingers directly onto the product.

Lo and behold!  Companies do listen to consumers' needs!  The new Paul & Joe glass packaging includes a cute Paul & Joe spatula!

Aside from the added spatula, this is the Creamy Foundation from Paul & Joe perfect for Normal to Oily skin!  I remember using the Light Cream Foundation to people with drier skin!

Together with the newly acquired Cream Foundation, this will actually be a first Paul & Joe Lipstick for me and its Lipstick C 068 Moon Shadow which I believe is a limited edition!  Most Paul & Joe products are housed in very cute packaging and this one is no exception!

The beautiful black and pink flowers motif are designs straight from the Paul & Joe runway collection.  And the gorgeous packaging is not even enough for me to want to keep this lipstick for good!  Scroll down and you'll understand...

The lipstick itself has a cat carving which according to my research, represents Sophie Albou's (the fashion and cosmetics company's founder) favorite animal cat.

Too bad most of them are out of stock, I want them all!  *meow*!

**photo lifted from Google images

I am currently reviewing the products and will even use the P&J Creamy Matte Foundation on clients to have a better review on different skin types!  Check back for detailed reviews!

As of the moment, presentation, packaging alone receives 2 thumbs up from me!

Keep smilin'

Stay happy!

AMW Reviews: Darlington Gusset Panty Stockings

I dislike wearing stockings!  I actually wanted to put HATE but that's too much negativity!  I remember those days when I work in an airline and we were required to wear stockings and I never did!  I am a rule follower!  But this is one rule I just can't follow!  I think the management gave up on asking me to wear one, because I never did!  I just hate the feeling of stockings and the probability of having a run in stockings as I tend to be too running around like there's no tomorrow! 

So why did I purchase one?  Prior to my Korea trip, we did not book any tour groups so I had a feeling that I'll be walking around until I won't feel my legs anymore!  Let's face it, I am older and my legs are weaker!  After seeing my mom go through hard times to treat her Varicose Veins that nearly threatened her leg veins, I told myself I have to do something about my legs before I have huge varicose veins popping up as early as now!  
I went to the mall and asked advice from the sales lady!  There's a couple of brands out there but I actually asked for the brand she used and she gave me the Darlington brand and told me most of the sales staffs use it as they are standing ALL DAY!  It's inexpensive, so what the heck?  I purchased black as I want to wear it on its own as leggings!


Darlington Gusset Panty Stockings says ---
Guaranteed made from finest quality hosiery and hygienic cotton gusset.  These materials provide you with comfort and reinforcement for added run protection.  Thus, will surely keep your legs looking classy and feeling energized all day.

Made in the Philippines
Available in: Skin tone, Fresh Beige, Light Gray, Almond Brown, Dark Gray and Black.

AMW says ---
  • Because of its micro fiber, it does not feel warm or uncomfortable against the legs!
  • Does not "run" easily as the stockings is a bit thicker compared to others.
  • Gives a nice support, feels tight but not too tight.
  • One size fits all!  The stretchable material fits legs of all sizes!
  • Comfortable.
  • Very inexpensive!
  • Can be used as a piece of clothing on its own.
  • Available in various colors!
  • The Cotton Gusset makes it comfortable to wear.
  • The garter is comfortable enough not to create marks on your tummy area.  Stretchable to an extent.
  • Prevents chaffing between your feet and the shoes.
  • For countries with winter climate, you can wear your favorite skirts with this underneath to keep your legs warm. (Check out the photo of this cute girl in Korea!  She knows her fashion :P)
  • Can tone down a bit of the flabby tummy!
  • Proudly Philippine-made!
  • Feels uncomfortable if you have long toenails (MYSELF!)
  • Difficult to wear if you have long fingernails too!  Have to be very careful!
  • If worn religiously, may cause bacterial growth on the unmentionables if material is non-breathable!  
  • Runs in the stockings may happen and it'll be a fashion boo-boo! 
  • On the other hand, if you are fully "blessed" around the tummy area, fats will show up *ouch* :(
I like having this inside my closet but I don't wear this religiously not unless my work requires me to stand up the whole day!  I have to clarify that the Darlington Full Support Gusset is not used to heal existing Varicose Veins (as there is another product meant for that).  This is used as prevention. 

  • For hand wash only
  • Never bleach this.
  • Hang dry and try not to stretch it too much.
  • Try to roll the leggings one leg at a time, do not just slip in your foot and wiggle it on the way to the end.
  • Adjust the foot area first before you start to slowly roll the stockings upwards.

  • If you want to wear this as is, wear a long top like long t-shirts or oversized boyfriend shirt!
  • This Full Support Gusset works with closed shoes or boots, do not wear open-toed shoes or sandals!
  • If you have really large Varicose Veins on your leg area and it bothers you, check with doctors specializing in Varicose Veins as they will give you the right size of Compression Stockings and the length of time needed to wear it!  Never try to be your own doctor as it may cause major problems in the future.
  • If you prefer the "see through" type, just tell the sales lady as they have this available too!
Will I repurchase?
Yes!  I actually did, I purchased the Skin Tone version to be worn underneath the jeans on days I know I'll be walking a LOT!

Where to purchase and how much?
At leading malls for Php199.75 (approx $4.65). You can check their website for more options. 

A photo to show how it dark the 
Darlington Gusset Panty Stockings in Black.  
No skin shown at all!

Have you used any Full Support Gusset?
Is it for fashion statement or for varicose veins prevention?
My answer would be both!  I killed 2 birds in one Panty Stockings!  *laughs*

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!

Monday, November 29, 2010

AMW Reads: For the Month of November + Nitz Restaurant Delivery

A year of AMW Reads!  Wow, and December is just around the corner!  Thanksgiving Day is over but my heart is still on full gratitude to my Blogger friends in Malaysia for sharing their knowledge through their blogs!  I admit up to this very moment, I learn so much just by reading blogs!

Paris B of My Women Stuff taught her readers the easiest way to create eye make up with the least makeup brushes as possible with her Tip: Very Easy Eyeshadow Application with 3 brushes and 1 palette.  I also own the L'Oreal Open Eyes Pro Eyeshadow so it's a good tip for me to reach out for it and play with it to create my own version!

Jenn of Lipglosseater gave us the lowdown on the differences of MAC Lip glosses available in the market with her MAC Lipglosses 101 post!  It's very helpful as I'm one of those who get really confused at a MAC makeup counter and usually leave the counter buying absolutely nothing!  With her post, you learn to choose which one that would suit your lips!

Kahani of So Loverly gave a very important insight for the companies who deal with Bloggers in Blogger Marketing Done Right.  I'm glad someone took a stand and voiced out their opinions for companies to understand the point of views of Bloggers.

Xin of Prettybeautiful shared How to use Bath Oil when You Don't have a Bath Tub post!  I love reading this because I have been gifted with bath oils a couple of times and I just don't know what to do with it because I don't have my own bath tub at home!  With her tips and tricks, I'm ready for bath oil gifts this holiday!

Tine of Beautyholics Anonymous shared the same sentiments as I do with dry skin!  Her blog post on Products That Literally Saved My Skin is like a bible to me because I have really dry skin too especially on colder days!  Seeing the products she used that works for her gave me more choices on what products to use for myself!

Yani of Red Luscious Lips showed her gorgeous lips with Red of the day: Smashbox Lipstick in Deep Red which reminded me to finally use my favorite red lipstick again this coming holiday!  This girl can seriously sport any red lipstick and make it work! 


Another reason to give thanks to, last week, I was on a super tired mode because I was sick for a week and my body was just coping up!  I wasn't in the mood to cook or even dine out!  When I got home, I got something delivered straight to my home in which I nearly forgot all about it!

Creamy Baked Lasagna
Large Php675.00/Medium Php360.00

Buko Pandan Salad
Large 9" Php360.00/ Medium Php200.00

I am a fan of pasta and I am very particular with the Lasagna that I injest, I've tasted various Lasagnas and I don't like it if it turns too salty for my taste.  With Nitz Creamy Baked Lasagna, the owner Sherryl told me it's her bestseller and she has friends are requesting for this especially during the Christmas Season.  To taste is to believe, and I believe her and her friends! :)  Would you believe that this whole tray lasted only 3 days?  Mr. AMW and myself even had 1 Creamy Baked Lasagna day!  We had this for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner!  *laughs*  Scary but true.  

The Nitz Creamy Baked Lasagna is indeed creamy minus the very salty taste.  Each layer was filled with a mix of cheese, cream and beef pieces which is just right and not overwhelming at all! 

The hubby and myself are not a fan of Buko Pandan, well, we are not fans of Buko (Coconut) overall!  I let my mom-in-law try this out as she's the expert Buko Pandan Salad eater and she said she likes the fact that each spoonful has enough Pandan gelatin, buko and a lot more!  A couple of spoonful is enough to satisfy her sweet tooth!  I actually haven't seen this inside the fridge after 4 days, so I guess it passed her taste buds!

Nitz Restaurant has been around since 1977 (wow, I wasn't even born yet!) and they are accepting advance orders perfect as gifts!  Call the numbers below:

Morayta (632) 735-5776
Espana (632) 493-9156
Malate (632) 536-7430
Fairview (632) 431-6638

*Get 1 free 2011 Desk Calendar for every purchase of large tray or 2 medium trays of Lasagna.
*Get 1 free 2011 Desk Calender for every purchase of 2 large trays or 3 medium trays of Buco Pandan Salad.

You can check their online website www.nitzonline.com.

Thanks Sherryl for the lovely surprise and you're right, it's perfect for families as gift!

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!

(Note from Author: Food was sent as gift, author is not affiliated with the restaurant.  The food review has been made base on author's personal experience.)

Nail Art Tutorial: "Christmas Ornaments Inspired" Nails

Happy Monday!!!  Today's nail art, well I wanted to put this on December 1, 2010 for that really nice kick-off for Christmas celebration!  But you know me, I've done it, and I want to share it ASAP!

I actually do have an inspiration for this week's nail art tutorial!  I was on a date with my mom and dad at the SM Mall of Asia and I can't help but stare at the gorgeous looking Christmas trees on display!  From green Christmas trees to white, gold and silver!  What drew me closer to a certain Christmas tree are the sparkly Christmas balls!  I was looking closely at its texture and I told myself it is a project I will be doing once I get home!  A nail art inspired by the metallic Christmas balls!  

**photo taken from Google images
This is my version in which I will show you step by step on how to achieve!  It's so funny how I finally decided to come up with these three colors by using hubby's fingernails to sample the color combination first before I decided with these 3....

Step 1:
As usual, apply your preferred Base Coat as this lessen the yellowing of your nails or even protect it from getting brittle and weak.  In using glittery polishes, the white base underneath is very important for the "glittery shades" to pop up.  I am using 1 coat of ELF Matte White polish topped with Caronia's Frosted Polish in Crystal

Step 2:
This is the trick to create a "texture" with your nail polish.  When your base polish is approximately 90% dry, meaning, its not too wet and yet its not on its driest stage, I would say approximately 5 minutes, do the sponge method not to create gradient nails but to create both texture and "airbrush" finish.

Apply Skin Food Nail Vita polish in metallic green directly onto a sponge

You can remove excess by blotting the sponge first onto a sheet of paper then gently tap it on the lower half of your nails.  Do not worry about the excess as you can clean them off later on.

Step 3:
Do the same step as above this time using Caronia Polish in Gold Rush or any gold polish of your choice. 

Directly press the gold polish in the middle part of your nails overlapping the Skin Food polish in Metallic green.  You can redo the steps above until you are happy with the pigmentation of the gold polish.  Again, do not worry about the mess!

Step 4:
To complete the 3 Christmas Balls color that I've been aiming for --- Green, Gold and Red.  I used Caronia Polish in Stellar and brush the polish directly onto the sponge.

Gently dab it on the outermost part or the tip of your nails.  Try not to create an obvious "line" that separates each color, try to create gradient in each shade!

Step 5:
While waiting for the polish to further dry up.  This is the perfect time to clean up the mess!  Dip your cotton bud with a polish remover and gently wipe off excess.  Be very cautious at this point as you don't want to mess up! 

You can choose to be happy with your nail art, apply a coat of Top coat and let dry.  In my case, I wanted to move further and do a bit of drawing.

Step 6:
Using Prettynails' 2 Way Nail Art Pen in White (my favorite), draw a tiny star.

Step 7:
I added some dots for that "shooting star" effect.  You can choose to draw my stars but I find it a bit tiresome to do so, so I opted for dots!  *lol*

Step 8:
Very important to wait at this point to make sure the stars and dots are COMPLETELY dry.  Apply your favorite top coat to protect the nail art design you worked hard for. 

My Christmas Ornaments Inspired Nails
So ready to party!!! :)

I know this may look "stressful" to some of you but here's in all honesty, using sponge as nail art is one of the easiest that I've done!  You don't have to have steady hands to dab the sponge!  Give it a try and you can always add up stickers or rhinestones instead of drawing! :)

Give it a try!  Life is too short to worry :)
Keep smilin'
Stay happy!


Sunday, November 28, 2010

AMW Reviews: L'Oreal Paris Base Magique

Happy Sunday dearest!  I had a super busy Saturday and I was all around going to different places!  I can seriously feel December!  So many people inside the mall, traffic, Christmas songs...ahhhh enjoying it while it last!  (the good and the bad)

To those who read my CBox (a chatbox on the right hand side of this blog), I was asked random queries and I usually answer them directly!  One query that caught my attention is the multiple queries on good face primer!  A lot of them asked for a good primer that's not too pricey!  Sad to say, I haven't tested a lot of face primers recently because I've been using BB Creams for the longest time.  I usually suggest Smashbox PhotoFinish Primer Light to those who have oily skin and to some who have dry skin, the Becca Silky Hydrating Primer or Paul & Joe Protective Foundation Primer for normal skin.

Come to think of it, most of the primers I mentioned are quite pricey to those who are just starting on makeup!  Where are the drugstore brands when we need them?  Thank goodness L'Oreal FINALLY came with one!  And it looks like this....

L'Oreal Paris Base Magique Transforming Smoothing Primer ---

Transform your bare skin texture:  The 1st smoothing primer that makes your lines and pores invisible for a visible and touchable smoothness.

A unique blend of  silicon oils and soft light powders create a sensational smoothing velvet formula to refine the skin.
  • Smooth wrinkles and fine lines
  • Perfectly hides pores
  • Skin imperfections are corrected.
  • The rosy shade brings out the translucency on bare skin tone.
Net Weight: 15ml
Ingredients: Cyclohexasiloxane, Dimethicone, Dimethicon/Vinyl Dimethicone  Crosspolymer, Silica, Acrylates Copolymer, Disodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Aluminum Hydroxide, etc...

AMW says ---
  • No weird scent.
  • Skin feels super soft and smooth after application.
  • The look of the pores decreases a bit.
  • Foundation application is easier!  
  • No allergies or skin irritations on me!
  • Works on normal/combination/oily skin. 
  • Makeup stays longer with this base primer on.
  • No need to put a lot on your face, you can choose to apply a thin layer all over face, adding a bit more on areas that are needed.  
  • Comes in glass jar which keeps the product fresh for longer period of time!
  • Smooth and creamy texture makes it easy to blend 
  • Disappears into skin, blends really well, no white cast or any shades.
  • Does not feel heavy on skin and foundation looks better!
  • Foundation holds up longer and the parts of my face that oils up within the day remains oil-free!
  • Packaging!  I am not a fan of dipping my fingers on wide mouthed jar!
  • Has silicon!  Not for people who are allergic to silicon!
  • Very dry skin individuals may need extra moisturizer prior to application. 
Not a bad primer!  I am actually quite impressed with how smooth the foundation application is on both myself and to other people!  

This is a nice primer to start up especially for people on the budget.  It's still NOT the cheapest around but this works!

from L'Oreal
  • Rub the velvet texture between your fingers to ease the spreading.
  • Apply a thin layer over the face, especially focusing on areas with fine lines, and visible pores.
from AMW
  • Use a spatula in getting the product especially if you are a makeup artist and plans to use this for other people.
  • During application, use patting motion with your fingers and press the product directly onto the "fine lines", "wrinkles" or "visible pores", then gently blend the rest of the product out to not create patches. 
  • Always close lid tightly to prevent product from drying up.
  • I think using CLEAN fingers during application is the best for this product.
  • Apply with light, feathery strokes as product dries up easily and may have product flaking.
  • Can't stress this enough, but try to check if counters have testers for you to take the "feel" of the product. 
  • L'Oreal has sale once in awhile so if you have the patience, you can wait for it! :)
Will I repurchase?
Yes.  Though I am not a fan of primer as I prefer BB cream, this is great for my "very dry skin" days and if I prefer to use liquid/cream foundation as this makes the application easier!

To whom do I recommend this to?
People who likes to use primer.  People with oily skin and have visible fine lines and pores.

Where to purchase and how much?
Locally at L'Oreal counters for Php945.00 (approx. $22.00).  I think in other countries, this is also known as L'Oreal Studio Secrets Magic Perfecting Base.

The close up look on the mousse-y texture

Applied a tiny amount (photo above) on half of my hand
You can see the lines blurring up a bit (click photo to enlarge)

I've used this for a couple of weeks on myself and it works!  Note that I do have dry/normal skin (dry on sides of the nose and forehead while normal on cheeks), for oily/normal (oily on t-zone and normal on the rest), my model Karen was ready for a shoot and I've given this a huge test!  She had her shoot inside a home and it's not air-conditioned and she had to pose on camera near windows or direct sunlight!  I brought along with me a "re-touch" powder and I did not use it much for 3 hours straight!  I did blot twice but even if I didn't, it still looks good!  The primer made the foundation easy to apply and it does not create white cast on photos as seen (super closeup) below.

Have you seen this primer around?
What's your most inexpensive primer that works to date?

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!

(Note from Author: Products were sent by company for review purposes.  The writer did not and will never receive any kind or form of payment for positive reviews.  The review has been done base on personal experiences.  Please purchase at your own discretion.)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Manila's Signature Dishes 2010: The Terrace at 5th

My weekend food tripping posts must have caught someone's attention on how I appreciate each and every gastronomical experience I encounter.  I was one of the few lucky Bloggers who was chosen to taste Manila's Signature Dishes for the year 2010. 

"Signature", once defined, means a unique and distinct mark, an identity.

That's the goal of Unilever Foodsolutions (UFS) and 16 restaurants across the Metro, to create unique dishes base on the exciting learning experiences of the chefs plus the dining experiences of the customers.  And let's not forget...value for money! 

Here are the lists of participating restaurants and its unique dishes...(you can click photo to enlarge)

16 Restaurants around the Metro will be participating and you can wine and dine this Christmas Season as the set menu will be available from November 15- Dec 31, 2010 paired with a glass of Casillero Del Diablo.

Yes, I will be tasting them all!  That's why I started to do my nightly walk and a bit of exercise!

I'm all ready to try Manila's Signature Dishes before the year ends of course, I'll share my experiences with all of you!  Let me start off by introducing the first restaurant that I'll be blogging about.

The Terrace at 5th

The first time I visited The Terrace at 5th, it was because of an event.  I got so relaxed in the restaurant right away because of its interior and lighting.  The design feels like you are in your own terrace located at the posh Greenbelt 5!

I told myself I'll definitely come back and probably share a special meal with the husband.  . 

We were greeted by the waiter right away once we entered and we were ushered to a table  near the glass window.  I actually like people-watching while I eat so it's a nice location!

We were greeted by Chef of the Night, Chef Cheryl Pineda, it was a busy night so it feels really good that she took the time to step out of the kitchen to greet us.  As we wait for the meal, hot bread with butter was served.  Bread was freshly baked!  I can eat 5 of these if I'm very hungry! *pig mode* :P

Pumpkin Veloute
Pumpkin and carrot soup with Mantecado ice cream, 
crushed walnuts and popcorn sprouts
The mixture of all the ingredients made it difficult for me to pinpoint the ingredients without asking the waiter.  The soup is creamy in texture and sweet to taste.  I have to say, after I finish this, I felt full all of a sudden! 

CCY Salad
Prosciutto-wrapped mixed greens and rocket leaves with tomatoes, 
slices of oranges and Italian buffala cheese in honey-mustard dressing.
Honey-mustard dressing with a hint of orange is something refreshing to taste.  I am not used to having ham as part of my salad but the taste is not overwhelming at all so I don't mind!

Roast Angus Beef Belly in Mushroom Ragu Sauce

Oven roasted Angus beef belly served with root vegetables and mushroom ragout
I am a super fan of this dish!  I am a white meat lover and I seldom appreciate beef.  I like this dish as it creates different types of texture inside my mouth.  This was cooked well done but a part of the meat is very tender while another part of it was crunchy which leaves quite an indescribable feeling inside my mouth.  The root vegetables included were oven baked and glad my favorite mini potatoes were included!   I appreciate the fact that the sauce were not poured all over the beef, because I prefer to dip my beef on a sauce on the side.

Honeyed Panna Cota

I've tasted a couple of Panna Cotas from different restaurants and most of them were great experiences.  At The Terrace at 5th, there is a slight tinge of bitterness on its syrup which makes it different compared to others.

Creme Brulee
I was told by Chef Cheryl that this is a new addition to The Terrace at 5th's list of dessert!  Crunchy sugar on top is quite addictive!

I downed a quarter glass of Casillero del Diablo.  As I tweeted, I am not a fan of any alcoholic beverages but it's great to drink a bit of this after a full course meal! And don't worry, I was able to go back home in one piece! *laughs*

I can see that a lot of diners prefer to stay inside for a quiet evening of story-telling and probably meetings!  Even if the restaurant is filled with customer, you feel like you have your own space because of the green grassy ambiance which relaxes you.

The Terrace at 5Th
Unit 93 Ground Floor Greenbelt 5, Phase 2
Ayala Center Makati City
Tel. No.: (632) 729-6860, (632) 729-0860

I have to commend on the waiter for the absolute wonderful service!  The waiter knows his dishes and he can answer my dish query without problems! 

When you dine in a restaurant, is great ambiance as important as great tasting food?

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!

Unilever Foodsolutions (UFS), being the preferred foodservice business partners among restaurateurs, felt the need to acknowledge notable restaurants who are developing Manila as a culinary city.  They have partnered with select restaurants within the metropolis in coming up with signature dishes.  UFS has synergized with these restaurants, both through dish development and promotion campaign for these signature dishes, in achieving one common goal: coming up with a different culinary experiences that provide value for money and culinary memories for diners.  

If you're a restaurateur (or an aspiring one) and in need of help in coming with your signature dish, call (632) 588-8855 or email at foodsolutions.philippines@unilever.com.