Sephora VIB Rouge <3

After a year’s worth of accumulation — and most definitely from helping my friends buy products LOL — I’m up to VIB Rouge status 😀

Even though I’m already a fan of getting my makeup removed trying on new products immediately in-store, I’m definitely going to do even more makeovers whenever I’m back home <3

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What’s even better is that Sephora ships to Hong Kong now! I can pretty much say bye-bye to my savings LOL 😀

Vancouver Haul (Part 2): Sephora & YVR DFS

Vancouver Haul (Part 2)

Just a quick update on my haul <3

Sephoraimage

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YVR Airport Duty Free

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With the HKD/ CAD rate hovering around 5.5-5.6 during that period of time and I used a credit card that didn’t charge any foreign exchange fees on non-HKD purchases, on the New Dimension serum alone I saved around HKD330 because it’s normally marked at HKD1220 for the 50ml alone at the local DFS and Estée Lauder counters.

Trust me, this was rather exciting. I joined all the other girls hovering around the Estée Lauder counter and I just swooped in to get what I’ve wanted to try out for a while now…and totally, totally mentally justifying my splurge purchase that all of the products would last me 6+ months and that really, I was just being savvy in stocking up on my staple skincare items.

I really tried hard to convince myself, people. 😀

Even the Duty Free cashier was curious as to why most of the Asia-bound passengers were stocking up like crazy on the Estée Lauder products; I explained that combined with the exchange rate and using a transaction fee-free card, we were making quite the killing.

Reviews to follow later <3

 

Vancouver Haul (Part 1): Marcelle & Sephora

Vancouver Haul (Part 1): Marcelle & Sephora

On Boxing Day, I went a little crazy when I landed at Sephora during my shopping trip out in downtown Vancouver. 1.5 hours later and it was a done deal:

  1. Smashbox Primer Water
  2. Smashbox Photofinish Primer
  3. Smashbox Telephoto Face Brush
  4. Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Kit
  5. Smashbox BB Water Foundation
  6. Smashbox Halo Perfecting Powder
  7. Smashbox BB Cream Concealer
  8. Smashbox Bronze Lights Bronzer

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In addition, back in July 2015, I’d ordered a couple items from Marcelle since I couldn’t get this amazing Canadian brand in Hong Kong:

  1. Marcelle Ideal Skin Perfector
  2. Marcelle Ultra Gentle Cleansing Gel
  3. Marcelle DD Cream
  4. Marcelle BB Cream
  5. Marcelle BB Roll-on Concealer

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Reviews to follow later <3

Groupon Bargain: Guerlain <3

Groupon Bargain: Guerlain <3

Hello fair readers!

I’m excited to let you all know about my latest find: Guerlain products on Groupon! Now, normally Guerlain products are a) not completely available on Sasa and b) not exactly budget friendly; as such, Guerlain hasn’t exactly been on my beauty radar for those two core reasons. In addition, I didn’t know what to really feel about getting (expensive) beauty products off of Groupon, so the whole situation felt iffy to me.

Yet, when I saw these two lovelies on Groupon, I couldn’t help it:

  • Guerlain Parure De Lumière Light Diffusing Foundation (02 Beige Clair)
  • Guerlain Météorites Light Revealing Pearls of Power

Now, although I haven’t actually swatched the foundation (now that I think about it…probably not the smartest move I’ve made to date), but in my defense, I did Google the swatches extensively and they seemed fairly close to what I normally would use (MAC NC15-20).

In addition, I tried looking high and low for the colour choice for the Pearls on the Groupon website, but alas, nothing turned up. However, my culminating research on the Pearls led me to understand that the shade difference between the first 3 choices are extremely subtle; as such, I can (again) probably get away with it LOL <3

I’m waiting with bated breath to pick up the Pearls this week and my friend to pick up the foundation for me because I won’t be in town when the pick up period starts for the foundation <3

Kiko Milano’s Launch in Hong Kong

Kiko Milano’s Launch in Hong Kong

It’s been exactly a month since the European brand’s launch in LCX, Harbour City (Tsim Sha Tsui) in Hong Kong, and frankly, I was intrigued: how will this company measure up against the litany of makeup and skin care choices available to us?

In addition, amidst a cornucopia of Japanese, Korean, Western, high-end and low-end brands, as well as local makeup conglomerates such as Sasa, Bonjour and Colourmix, where will Kiko Milano stand in Hong Kong’s market? It was just in 2010 when Sephora withdrew from the Hong Kong market after a little less than 1.5 years from its initial launch, and it’s highly speculative that perhaps the local competitions were too strong for them to make actual profit, unlike their North American counterparts, where Sephora is locally known as a leader for housing an excellent selection of products in addition to their own brand.

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I first came across Kiko when I popped by LCX on Saturday and the store’s set up reminded me of Vancouver’s Murale where the main theme is white and purple; everything was lined up neatly and strategically for customers to select their fun lipsticks and glosses before the main foundations and powders, skin care, eye makeup and finally the holiday gift sets. After a quick peruse through the available products and help from the store’s makeup artists, I walked out with the following products:

  • Skin Tone Corrector (Peach) | HKD110
  • Liquid Second Skin Foundation (WB15) | HKD209
  • 3D Lifting Foundation (Light Almond 02) | HKD163
  • Radiant Fusion Baked Powder (Sand 02) | HKD145
  • Creamy Lipgloss (Pearly Strawberry Pink 102) | HKD 79
  • 3D Instant Volume Lip Gloss (2) (Peach Rose 203 & Natural Rose 217) | HKD79 each

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I was pleasantly surprised that all of the products I came across there were made in Italy; a place where I have high regards for their workmanship and quality control. Although my original bill came to HKD864, given that there was a Christmas promotion, my bill came to HKD706; this meant that I basically got two of the lip glosses for free 🙂

At the end of the day, time will tell whether Kiko Milano will gain a strong footing in the Hong Kong market, and the fact that they are offering high-quality products at reasonable pricing, I honestly hope they are here to stay 😀

Reviews to follow soon! 🙂

New Love: T Galleria (DFS)

New Love: T Galleria (DFS)

I have (stupidly) just discovered a new beauty location in Hong Kong to satiate my love for Estée Lauder: the T Galleria (DFS). Just to clarify here, the DFS is basically a Duty Free Store that is…outside of the airport. I normally waltz by this store and particular location on Canton Road in Tsim Sha Tsui (a beautiful, central location in the city by the way in case any of you lovely people are dropping in to Hong Kong for a trip, or you want your hands on some awesome duty-free shopping before you hit the airport) telling…CHANTING to myself that this is a location for tourists and I probably won’t find anything good.

Dammit I was so wrong.

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Courtesy of DFS Galleria 🙂

I note here that this was a stupid revelation because I walked by this place so. many. times. Never once did I waltz in there to check out the promotions or anything. I walked into this beautiful mall yesterday and interestingly, it wasn’t as packed to the brim with tourists and their assorted wheelies like it normally would be; I made it to the centre of the mall and there was a beautiful arrangement of Estée Lauder holiday gift offers and travel exclusives (think 100ml bottles, mini travel sets, samples, duos and the like. :D)

It was like I walked in there and I said, “Here, here. Take my money. Just take it.”

The promotions are actually slightly different — and when I say different, I mean better for my purposes — and you end up getting more cute travel bottles/sample sizes of products.

For me, I got the travel exclusives of the ANR II Face Serum (100ml) ANR II Eye Duo Bottle Set (I know, I know. I mentioned in the ANR II Face & Eye review before that I had given up hope on the Eye Serum after just one bottle; I’m willing to give it a second (and well, third) try for this since I had to get a second and third (and by now, fourth) bottle of the ANR II Face Serum to really the results of how my skin would be without it and that the repair is steady but surely in progress. The 100ml bottle works out to be better bang for the buck as currently it’s my main — or rather, only one for now — serum for day and night and I use it for my face, neck and décolletage.

I know that’s a lot of ground — or skin in this case — to cover for a serum and hefty for my pocket, but anti-aging has got to start with your own routine and consistency and the neck and décolletage are one of the more commonly neglected area for women; it shows signs of aging just as much the face does so it deserves the TLC you give for your face as well. Imagine a nice, firm face but a relatively saggy, wrinkly neck and décolletage; it’s not a pretty sight and it just looks downright neglectful of you. It’s never too late to start showing some love for your skin! 🙂

With this purchase, I got a slew of samples that I will actually want to use and make a point of using plus a nice blue cosmetic bag to contain it all:

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From left to right:

Full-sized Products: ANR II Eye Serum Duo pack, ANR II Face Serum (100ml)
Travel-sized products: Lipgloss, ANR II Face Serum (x2), Micro Essence (x2), ANR II Eye Gel, Resilience Lift Night & New Dimension Shape + Fill Expert Serum

I think I’ve become a convert for T Galleria now for my future beauty needs. 😀 Check out their list of beauty brands (and your other vices — clothing, alcohol and more :D) here !

Estée Lauder Nutritious Line Haul at the Counter

Estée Lauder Nutritious Line Haul at the Counter

I love the holidays and especially when my favourite stores come out with
their Christmas promotions and gift sets. I walked by Estée Lauder in the mall and I’ve been dying to try out the rest of their Nutritious line after having had a positive experience with their Nutritious Cleanser. After sitting down and trying on that line’s toner and cream, HKD1560 later, I walked out with a Christmas promotion for the following:

  • Estée Lauder Nutritious Radiant Vitality Energy Lotion (Intense Moist)
  • Estée Lauder Nutritious Vitality8 Night Radiant Overnight Creme/Mask

Since I was also interested in the Day Cream, I also bought the Estée Lauder Nutritious Vitality8 Radiant Moisture Cream (but it was at full price for HKD 580 🙁 ) and I was out of a day cream (I swear that I don’t have a lone bottle of lotion or cream in my beauty cabinet or somewhere… 😉 )

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The really nice Beauty Advisor at the Estée Lauder counter made me feel a little better since I got the Day Cream at full price (LOL I know, but their products definitely aren’t cheap! 🙁 ) by throwing in samples packets of their New Dimension Shape + Fill Serum at my request as I’ve been curious about this product ever since it launched and a sample bottle of the ANR II serum so I can throw that into my travel bag for this winter 🙂

It’s better than getting no perks at this point. 😛 PLUS, I’m guaranteed that the products have not been opened or tampered with, as opposed to me shopping at particular Sasa locations (note: I have had excellent finds at Sasa as noted in my great Estée Lauder haul before, but I must say that some locations are better than others and it can completely be the luck of the draw. 🙁 )

I tried out the Rosy Prism Radiant Gel Emulsion first before the Radiant Moisture Cream while I was at the beauty counter, but I decided not to go with the Gel Emulsion for my skin type as I felt that it wouldn’t nearly be moisturizing enough for me in Hong Kong, let alone when I head home to Vancouver 🙁 Here’s to hoping that my choices turns out positive!

Check out the line’s full range here:: http://www.esteelauder.com/skincare/nutritious

Reviews to follow! 🙂

SaSa Haul: Estée Lauder Edition

SaSa Haul: Estée Lauder Edition

2015-08-10 18.17.17My skin has been in great need of some serious TLC after a series of mishaps (i.e. sunburn from Singapore, general allergic patches that end up all dry, patchy and gross), plus I’d run out of serums in my beauty cabinet as I surprisingly don’t actually have a whole lot of those in rotation. With serums, for some reason, I’ve just been the whole “just use enough face cream and you should be fine” and I didn’t put as much thought into them as I should have been. Seeing as I’m reaching my late twenties, I think it’s high time that I step up the ante and set a good targeted skin care regiment for my problematic areas now that I’m getting older (cue loud sobs here).

After much research online, deliberation and remembering that my skin reacted all right to the Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair face and eye serum, I popped into my local SaSa and picked up the Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair II Face Serum and the Estée Lauder Micro Essence Skin Activating Lotion.

Now you’re probably wondering why I didn’t waltz over to the Estée Lauder counter that’s also conveniently located in the same mall, but instead fight through the various haggling aunties with their suitcases and the giggling school girls in SaSa and pick these products up.

One answer: it worked out to be cheaper.

Most of you readers probably know that there are ANR duo sets available in the airport duty free only, and this is no exception here in Hong Kong; however, SaSa (and other similar makeup companies) happens to stock said duo sets in their designated locations. As such, if you’re interested in trying out their entire series, or you have used them before and would like to stock up, it’s actually not a bad idea to purchase the duo and/or the smaller trial bottles to see if your skin likes it at all.

Side note: for those of you who are sensitive to fragrances (like me), some of Estée Lauder’s products (i.e. face creams and cleansers) have fragrance added into them (as opposed to it being a naturally occurring scent) so before you head out and buy the whole shebang, I would strongly suggest getting the little trial kits. I did before and I’m glad I did because my skin did not like their Time Zone face cream. I broke out in red itchy bumps all. over. my. face. It took a solid month for the bumps to recede, heal and peel. Not pretty at all.

Although I’m not the best at math, I try to make it a point to pull up a spreadsheet and pop in the products that I’m interested in buying online and seeing if the numbers add up to be realistically (still) within my budget:

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(Note: for the purpose of this calculation, I used the price for the 50ml Face Serum)

Based on what I found on the SaSa website as well as the Estée Lauder website, if I were to purchase each product separately, the totals came up to HKD1938 and HKD2740. Therefore, if I bought the products from SaSa, I would save HKD802. To take it even further, if I were to buy the ANR duo set, eye serum and the lotion, the total would be HKD1883 instead.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I sure as heck would like to have money left over in my budget for another potential targeted product. Or just having money left over. Period. 😀 Granted, I had to do my due diligence in checking the products’ packing, edition (i.e. ANR or ANR II), safety seals, expiry dates and the whole nine yards; however, I’ve purchased other products from SaSa before and they haven’t let me down so far.

Product reviews to follow 🙂

Vista Case Covers Review

Etsy: Vista Case Covers Review

I thought I’d take a break from my usual makeup review and take a look at my other love: online shopping.

I love me some online deals and the whole multi-2015-07-04 20.25.58window-multi-tab cross comparisons on my laptop while I sip on a nice hot cappuccino. 🙂

To protect my current iPhone, I looked around in popular tech hotspots in Hong Kong for the particular type of case that I was looking for (i.e. a wallet case with more than 3 card slots, which also needs to be sturdy, pretty and less than HKD500). I ended up with nothing that matched more than one of those criteria. As such, online I went.

I came across Vista Case Covers on Etsy and gosh, I was amazed. What was I DOING all that time wandering around in Hong Kong, when the case that I wanted was online all this time? Situated in Sydney, Australia, the store has a plethora of vibrant yet practical wallet cases to fit phones ranging from Sony to Samsung to Apple to even customized cases. I clicked through the pages for iPhones and after scrolling through abstract art, colourful skulls, supernovas and cutesy cartoon animals; I came across a beautiful oil painting of the Eiffel tower on the case cover. A cover that combines my love for all things beautiful, travel and my bucket list?

DONE.

I got the case in the mail about 2 weeks later, and I took it out to take pictures of it and everything; but I put it away to save it for when I would replace the temporary case that I bought while I waited for the Eiffel Tower one to arrive in the mail. Fast forward to today, my temporary case started to look a little too beaten up and it felt a little too heavy in my bag so I retired that case and put on this new one 🙂 The printing of the Eiffel Tower on the case is bright and of a high quality and the case feels sturdy yet is light enough to hang onto while I’m out and about. For about AUD30 (incl. shipping)**, this was much cheaper than what I found around in Hong Kong and online, and a lot prettier and practical by a long shot.

Let’s just say that I’m very much a happy camper here, and I encourage you to check the store out to see if you can find a phone case that reflects your personality 🙂

**Approximately USD22 | HKD175 | CAD22

DISCLAIMER: I was not compensated or requested to give a review on the store in any way, shape or form. I’m merely a very happy customer who bought the case with my own money and I wanted to share my shopping experience with all of you in the world 🙂

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