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Best in Beauty 2015 -Skin, Body and Fragrance


GLAMGLOW Glamtastic Facial Set

I tried out GLAMGLDW for the first time in 2015, and it did wow me. Especially BrightMud, the mask for the eye area worked amazingly. It contains caffeine and reduces puffiness of the eyes instantly. I also love SuperMud and YouthMud too, that they both cleans my skin properly -though I always break out after use, I still love them all.

Kielh's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel-Cream

Such a perfect morning moisturiser for oily, combination and dehydrated skin. During summer my skin becomes super oily that makeup melts during the day. This moisturiser creates a perfect base without making the skin oily, and it helps makeup to stay longer. In winter it's a little too light for me but I will 100% repurchase it next spring / summer, as it really did make a big difference on the lasting power of my makeup.

EVE LOM CLEANSER
A mini size of this much-loved cleansing balm was in one of lookfantastic Beauty Box. Not sure if it's the cleanser or the muslin cloth, but it makes my skin feel like baby's skin. It takes my makeup off completely, whilst leaving moisture but not an oily residue. I am not a huge fan of the scent -which is very oriental and herbal- but I can cope with it because the result is just AMAZING.



Rituals True Happiness Gift Set 

Rituals could be my favourite body care brand ever. I love their pink range (Ayurveda?) and their body cream is the best body moisturiser I have ever used. I wanted to purchase all of their products back in August when I went to the UK, but I restricted myself and only bought two gift sets for myself to try out different products. I ended up loving the body scrub and shower foam in Laughing Buddha range. The scrub is harsh enough to remove all the dead skin cells on my legs and elbows, the parts I find pretty hard to polish with crappy scrubs. The shower form is fun to use in the shower, I love how it turns to a foam. The scent is very relaxing, and a little bit masculine that I like. I still like the pink ones, but as I mentioned it in the last year's best in beauty post, I thought to mention this range this year instead.

Lola's Apothecary Restorative Winter Clarifying Bath & Shower Oil

If you haven't tried out any products from Lola's Apothecary, you should. This Bath & Shower Oil is my recommendation for you, if you like a herbal scent. The glass bottle looks so pretty on the bathroom shelf, with flower petals inside, but that's not all. The blend of peppermint, lemon, eucalyptus, rosemary and marjoram smells absolutely beautiful. Not only does it calm you down, it also helps your muscle pain, blocked nose and body ache. I love how soothing and relaxing the scent is, and it's perfect for a morning shower. I rub the oil on my body before having a shower, which makes a shower time super relaxing and luxurious.

Therapie Roques Oneil Joie Bath Infusion

Another product makes you feel completely relaxed. A bath soak powder that contains rose quartz, jasper, butter milk and french clay along with beautiful essential oils such as frankincense, cedarwood and sandalwood, helps you detox and relax. They recommend you not to use any electric devises after having a bath with this product, so that you can maximise the effectiveness of this product. I have never smelt anything like this before, it's such a unique yet addictive scent. This tiny sachet costed £12.00 which is ridiculously expensive, but I am dying to try out their bath salt, too.


Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess
I now understand why people have been raving about this fragrance. It is the BEST summer fragrance, ever!! I got mine this summer at Bicester Village with about £15.00 - 20.00 discount. I like the latest bottle -as mine is one year older- but I don't care much because the scent is just beautiful. When I heard some beauty YouTubers raving about this fragrance saying 'it smells like a beach holiday' and 'smells of sunscreen', I never thought I would like this scent because I thought a sunscreen-scented fragrance is a little too childish to me. But I was wrong, this scent is very sophisticated yet fun and playful, I highly recommend it to anyone who likes creamy coconut scent blended with fresh citrus. 

Penhaligon's Lothair
My autumn/winter fragrance of the year! It smells masculine yet not too manly if that makes sense -such a perfect scent for both men and women. The blend of bergamot, grapefruit, berries, fig milk, magnolia, lavender, vanilla, musk and ceaderwood smells so lovely that I have been wearing it non-stop for months. The key note of this fragrance is tea, which is my favourite scent when it comes to fragrance. My husband and I had been wearing the tea fragrance from BVLGARI -which I forgot the name of- for years and years and it brings me a nostalgic feel.

Estée Lauder Modern Muse 
Who doesn't like this scent? It might not be some people's favourite, but who gets offensive by this scent? It's such a lady-like, feminine, clean scent that gives a good-girl-impression. I think it's perfect for an interview, meeting and a first date, when you have no idea what kind of scent your date likes. And also, this is a fragrance you can wear all year round!

I hope you enjoyed my Best in Beauty posts! Wishing you a happy new year!






Best in Beauty 2014 -Skin, Hair and Body


I have written my 'Best in Beauty' post on my Japanese blog at the beginning of Jan, but I missed a chance to write on this blog...until now. I know I'm a bit late, but hopefully you enjoy it :)

SKINCARE
My skin has changed slightly about 2-3 years ago. It used to be super dry, but it started becoming a bit oily during summer. This year, I turned 30 and my skin has become combination skin all year round. I struggled to find suitable products for my combination skin, as I was used to having dry skin. But these products are the ones saved my skin a lot throughout the year!

CyberWhite HD Advanced Brightening Night Creme
I'm about to use up the 2nd jar of this beautiful night cream, and I am not looking forward to that because I don't think I can purchase it myself. This cream is supposed to help eliminate dullness, brightens up the dark spots and make your whole complexion looks brighter. And I noticed that my dark spots around my eyes look brighter actually. Brightening skincare products never worked on me so I was not expecting anything to be honest, but I'm happy too see the visible result! But what I love about this cream isn't that effect, it's how it feels on the skin and how it smells. It's not too heavy yet moisturising enough, and it smells divine that helps me relax before going to bed.

Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II
It minimises the appearance of my pores. Enough said.

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Eye
It applies like lotion but moisturises the skin around the eyes well. I tried the sample sachet which lasted for more than a week I remember, and felt it reduced the intensity of my dark circles, and picked one up at the duty free shop in Okinawa. It's not greasy or heavy around the eyes at all, and definitely reduces the fine lines in the next morning as well as brightens up the dark circles. And this tube will last me forever!

Terracuore Damask Rose Dew Oil
Oh my god, has a facial oil ever been this fragrant? I don't think so. It is like a fragrance that you apply on your face. It moisturises, brightens, plumps up your skin, while redusing the visibility of the pores. It feels like a serum rather than an oil when applied an appropriate amount, and sinks into the skin instantly. I use it before moisturiser when my skin feels stiff, or apply it on top of the moisturiser when my skin needs intense hydration. Also you can use it along with a steamed towel for a 'at home spa treatment'. 


Perfume, Hair care and Body care

Jo Malone Perfume
I discovered Peony & Blush Suede in summer, and asked my husband to get one from the duty free shop at Heathrow Airport when he was back in London, as the price in Japan is ridiculously high even when you consider the terrible exchange rate between GPB and JPY. I don't typically pick a floral scent, but this one smells feminine yet not grandma-like. I used up half the bottle within 2-3 months, which was because it didn't stay on my skin at all and I had to spray it a few times throughout the day. Then I purchased Pomegranate Noir on Rakuten Auction for 1,000yen  just because I didn't want to use up Peony & Blush Suede. I am combining it with Red Rose (in sample size) as it smells too musty to me on its own. I also like Blackberry & Bay, French Lime Blossom and Earle Grey & Cucumber. 

Rituals Honey Touch Body Cream
Definitely the best smelling body cream, ever. This is my first ever body cream that I've used up in my life. It leaves my skin soft and smooth, without being greasy at all, and the scent transfers to my clothes and remain smelling divine for hours. It was too heavy during the summer as it's super humid in Japan, it was the only thing I was looking forward to about autumn / winter. It smells like a gorgeous bathroom at a very high-end hotel. I know it sounds horrible, but you may understand if you've tried it!

L'Oreal Elseve Extraordinary Oil
The best hair oil ever. It doesn't weigh down my hair at all yet nourishes the ends instantly. It smells of 'oriental flowers' which is a bit musky, kind of dusty in a way yet feminine and sexy....which I absolutely love.

Alterna Bamboo Volume Weightless Whipped Mousse


It gives a great volume in my hair!! The mousse texture makes it easy to distribute to my hair. I use it mainly on my roots when I wear my hair down to give enough volume, or apply it all over including the ends when I wear my hair up, which gives a good 'grip' to my hair without making it greasy.

Do you want to know what my favourite makeup products of 2014? It will be up on Sunday!

LUSH Olive Branch Body Lotion


LUSH Olive Branch Body Lotion
A couple of months ago I found out LUSH had a new system called LUSH KITCHEN where they make online exclusive products in a limited quantity, and the product range changes every week.  I wasn't interested at first because I don't like paying the postage when there is a branch in my local town....until I saw this product. 

Olive Branch is my favourite scent from LUSH. When I went to England for the first time in 2012, I bought a small bottle of Olive Branch Shower Gel because it was cheaper than what it was in Japan at that time because of the exchange rate. Bringing 200ml shower gel that's sold in Japan seemed ridiculous, but I could not justify myself to spend 2,000yen on shower gel to buy it in Japan, yet I loved the scent so much that I wanted it so bad.

So when I found out that they brought the body lotion in the same scent, I had to get it. I think it was about 2,500yen including the postage, which is a little pricey but it didn't stop me from purchasing it.


I like this pot, it screams pamper in my opinion! But the lotion is very very thin that you have to be really careful when you open the lid especially when it's still new because it just runs off. 

It smells absolutely gorgeous, you will LOVE it if you like the shower gel. It smells a little bit sweeter than shower gel for some reason, but it's still amazing without a doubt. 


It applies smoothly and very light weight that doesn't make your skin greasy at all. I can get dressed immediately after applying it, without making my clothes stick to my skin. I usually like body butter than body lotion in winter, but this one is moisturising enough though it's a thin lotion. I have been suffering from an unknown skin disease for months now and it made a lot of cuts and irritations on my legs mainly, but this lotion made my skin condition much better, without stinging like some other body creams does.

The scent lingers for about 30 minutes, and slowly fades away. It's not a kind of body cream that leaves a scent on your clothes, maybe because it's got natural essential oils as a fragrance. I use this body lotion on my whole body at night, and on my legs in the morning because I like wearing Rituals Body Butter in the pink packaging on my arms in daytime as the scent lingers for the whole day.

I really hope LUSH would make it a permanent product because I want to repurchase it once my pot is finished. They also brought the body lotion in Comforter and American Cream as well that sold out immediately. What does LUSH KITCHEN have in your country?



Autumn Lush Haul


Though my bathroom isn't as fancy as the ones I see in "Pamper Evening Routine" videos on YouTube, I still like having a long bath in autumn and winter. I have loads of bath soaks, bath salts and bath oils sitting on the shelf, but I needed to buy some bath bombs from LUSH when the Halloween and Christmas products came out.



As my skin doesn't agree with the bubble bars, I picked up bath bombs only. The first one I put in my basket was Luxury Lush Pud. It smelt divine and reminded me of some other Lush bath bombs. Then a shop assistant told me that it was exactly the same scent as Twilight and I thought "Right, that's it!". It smells sweet and calming with Lavender and Ylang Ylang.


Another limited bath bomb I picked up is Northern Lights. It smells absolutely amazing, although I usually don't like Jasmine and Ylang Ylang at all, this bath bomb instantly takes me to heaven whenever I sniff it. I also love the shape of it as it's easier to break. My bathtub is not big and a half or quarter of a bath bomb is enough at one bath.


Avobath was the first ever Lush product I bought when I was in high school. I didn't like Lush at that time because the smell of the shop was overpowering. But when I saw this "best selling bath bomb" and smelt it, I fell in love. Since then I have been a big fan of the brand. Avobath has a subtle lemongrass and bergamot scent which is zingy and energizing yet relaxing at the same time. If I remember correctly, it's got glitter particles. 


And then this is Think Pink which is smaller than other ones. The blend of Lavender, Vanilla and Neroli smells absolutely beautiful. It smells of Lavender when you sniff it, but when it's dissolved it smells more like sweets with a hint of the floral scent. Not overpowering at all and perfect for the colder season. It's got rice paper confetti hearts that look so pretty in the bath.


Last but not least, my winter skincare staple Let The Good Times Roll. It looks and smells like cookie dough. It's a super moisturising cleanser with fine scrubbing particles, which is definitely not suitable for my combination skin during summer. But in the colder season, it's a must-have. It leaves my hands and face smelling yummy which is the main reason why I love it, and also gently exfoliates my skin and makes it silky smooth.

Recently Lush Japan came out with the body lotions that have popular scents such as American Cream, Comforter, Tramp and Olive Branch. I am dying to try the Olive Branch Body Lotion as this is my favourite scent ever. But the annoying thing is that it's online exclusive. It's also limited and I have no idea until when it will be sold. I might as well just purchase it online (it's about 2,000yen) and give it a go. I hope it smells as good as the shower gel! I will write a review when it's arrived. 

Beauty rules that are common in Japan


Common knowledge is such an unreliable thing. Not sure if "unreliable" is the best word to describe it, but it really is, because your common knowledge can be senseless in other places. But it's always good to know what is common in other countries, isn't it? Especially when the "country" is Japan, where women give so much attention to beauty!
 
 
Skincare

  • Don't rub your skin with a towel, nor with a cotton pad.
It's surprising to see how girls in Europe and the US rub their skin when they wash their face or pat it dry. Whenever I'm watching "skincare routine" video, and see a girl rubbing her eyes with a cotton pad with Bioderma, then with a muslin cloth, then with a towel, and then again with a cotton pad soaked with toner, it makes me want to scream "NOOOOOO!". That's a huge NO-NO in Japan because it does irritate your skin obviously, and ruin your skin texture. Do not ever rub your skin, even when you wipe your face with a towel, gently pat dry rather than scrubbing.

  • Moisturise with lotion before applying a moisturiser.
In Japan, we all use moisturising lotion before moisturiser. Moisturiser replenishes your skin with oil and other ingredients, whilst lotion gives moisture back to the skin. You can either apply with  a cotton pad or your hands. I choose depending on the texture of the lotion, but when I use a cotton pad I make sure not to rub, and I gently press my skin with my hands in the end to help the lotion sink in completely. 


  • Always wear SPF, even on a cloudy day or indoor.
UV rays are always attacking your skin. Even when you stay indoors. Make sure to apply sunscreen in the morning after washing your face. This is why I love Clinique Superdefence SPF20, as it works as a moisturiser and sunscreen in one!
 
 
Hair care

  • Blow dry your hair with a hair dryer.
You need to blow dry your hair unless you have super short hair to maintain both your hair and scalp healthy. When your hair is wet, the cuticle is open which makes your hair in a very fragile state. It causes hair breakage, split ends and dry hair. Also it's easy to imagine your scalp is also wet when your hair is wet. It encourages bacterial growth which can lead to skin diseases and odour. 

If you don't blow dry your hair with a hair dryer only because you are worried it would damage your hair, use a heat protecting spray. Ideally ones with an effective ingredient Erucalactone that seals up the cuticles by the heat. We are aware that the heat damages the hair, but maintaining healthy scalp is much more important as you can cut your hair but your scalp is a part of your body skin, like your face.


  • Wash your hair every day or at least every other day.
I was shocked when I learnt there were countries where people didn't wash their hair every day. That's how it's common sense to wash hair daily. We don't care if it damages our hair (just invest on a good hair mask!), we need to be clean!! I am sorry if I sound harsh, but it is quite disgusting for Japanese people to imagine not washing hair for days, and you sleep with it. 


  • Silicone is bad for your hair. Wait, it's not too bad actually.
It's crazy how people went "anti-silicone" a few years ago and brands started bringing loads of silicone-free shampoo and conditioner. But then some brands started claiming that silicone wasn't always bad, there were some kinds that would clog pores, but not all of them. Silicone-free hair care products are still popular in Japan, but consumers are not as particular as they were. One thing you need to watch out is that the products especially hair treatment or conditioner, that don't contain silicone tend to contain more oils, which get oxidised on your scalp which smell bad. Trust me, it happened to me and I wondered why. I much prefer silicone!


  • Avoid any friction when your hair is wet.
 My hair used to get tangled and dry so bad during winter. I asked my hair dresser why, and he asked "You don't go out with wet hair, do you?". I looked back, and realised that I would wash my hair in the morning and blow dry, but as I didn't have much time I would just dry 70% and wrap a scarf around my neck and went out. Again, your hair is very fragile when it's wet. Any frictions would cause a damage to it. Dry your hair completely before you leave your house, or go to bed.


 Body care

  • Apply moisturiser on the butt.
 I cannot believe how people are unconcerned about their butt! You are sitting down like 10 hours a day (or more?) and your butt always rubs against chairs. This area tends to get dry as well, and the combination of frictions and dryness can cause pigmentation and rough skin. I scrub and moisturise my butt daily, to keep it like a baby's (TMI).


 Makeup


  • Leave the top part of your eyebrows as natural as possible.
I know you can go crazy pulling out your eyebrows. But do not touch the top part of your eyebrows, that way they look more natural. In other words, when the baby hairs on top of your eyebrows are completely gone, they look fake and old fashioned.


  • Make your eyebrows a little brighter than your hair colour.
This is common in Japan too, but apparently not so much in other countries. Blonde hair + dark eyebrows look very strange to me, but it might depend on each person. I personally don't like dark eyebrows with my bright hair colour, so I dye them every other week at home, and use an eyebrow mascara to colour them daily.

  • Blot before applying foundation
Apply a moisturiser, then blot with a tissue. Apply a primer, then blot again. You don't need any excess oil before applying foundation. Make sure your skin is completely oil-free, and then apply it. It prevents your makeup to slip off during the day, and make it last much longer.



There are the ones just came up in my head! Let me know what the beauty habits in your country are, on Twitter or Instagram!


P.S. I'm getting many responses saying "I don't agree" or "That's wrong", but there are just common things in Japan and obviously you have different habits in other countries. I am not claiming that you all should follow them, I'm just sharing how Japanese girls take care of ourselves, as Japan is tend to be one step ahead when it comes to beauty.



The Body Lotion for Summer / Garnier Oil Beauty Nourishing Lotion


Garnier Oil Beauty Nourishing Lotion £4.99
Summer in Tokyo is hell. The heat radiating off asphalt and the humidity level is really high. But the skin gets dry because of the air conditioning in the stores, restaurants and among others, in the trains. It's ridiculously cold and freezing, I feel that I am frozen to the bone after getting off the train. I'm in the train for 2-3 hours a day, and in the office for like 10 hours or so, which makes it easy to imagine my skin is completely dehydrated. 

But at the same time, I cannot use my favourite body butters from The Body Shop and Rituals, because they make my skin greasy and sticky mostly because of the humidity I guess. So I was looking for a light body lotion that sinks in quickly and hydrates my skin without that annoying feeling.

Then I found it. Well done Garnier, it's such a lovely body lotion. It contains Argan oil, Macademia oil, Almond oil and Rose oil that help improve the skin condition. Sounds good, doesn't it?


Though it's called "lotion", it looks pretty thick. But don't worry, it just absorbs into the skin quickly, and leaves a subtle moisturising feeling on the surface. I still can feel it after 5 minutes, but not in a bad way at all. This was the only body lotion I can apply in the morning before heading to work during the summer. 

I also love how it smells. First I thought it was too sweet and perfumy, but now I'm used to  it and am kind of addicted to it. I don't know how too describe this scent, but it's pretty  feminine, floral scent that some people might not like. On the website it's described as "
subtly fragranced" but trust me, the scent is NOT subtle. I like the scent so I am happy that it lingers on my skin, but it's quite misleading in my opinion.



Garnier is definitely one of my favourite drugstore brands, now I'm eying on their hair care products that feelunique started to carry a while ago. I don't know which one smells good (a scent is the most important for me when it comes to toiletries) and which works for my hair, but I would love to try them out someday in the near future. 

I am also curious about their body scrub from the same range of this body lotion. It must smell the same, and I like the fact it's in the tube bottle rather than a pod. Let me know if you've tried it before, and what your favourite Garnier products are!


My Top Sun Protection Products


It's the end of June, summer is around the corner. Are you protecting your skin from the strong sun? Here are my top sun protection products that I've been loving this summer!

1. Organic Argan UV Cut Spray
Love this UV cut spray not only because it provides long-lasting (and waterproof) UV protection of SPF50+ PA+++, but it smells divine. I don't even need a perfume when I wear this handy sunscreen which you can spray easily on your back, the back of your legs and hair.

2. Clinique Superdefense Daily Defense Moisturizer SPF 20
This moisturiser with SPF20 is perfect for a lazy weekend when I'm not wearing foundation. It has a slight sunscreen scent that I'm not a big fan of, but it goes away after like 5 minutes. Love the fact it gives a matte finish, too.

3. Clinique Superdefense SPF 20 Age Defense Eye Cream
Why don't all the eye creams in the world have SPF? This moisturising eye cream is tinted which brightens up my eye area instantly, while protecting the most sensitive areas to the sun. I am glad that they brought out an eye cream with SPF as I tend to get dark spots around my eyes, and this product makes me feel secure!

4. Origins Smarty Plants CC Cream / Light
I use this SPF20 CC cream to correct my complexion and to protect my skin against UV. I wrote a full-review HERE so I'm not going to ramble here about it, but it's such a lovely CC cream that evens out the skin tone and gives a subtle glow to it. I find the texture a little too heavy for me during summer, but I love wearing it in Spring, Autumn and Winter!

5. Origins Brightening Protector SPF40 PA+++
This is the sunscreen from their brightening range only sold in Asia. I love this one more than Smarty Plants CC Cream during summer, because it has higher SPF and the texture feels lighter on the skin. It doesn't have the sunscreen smell at all, and I enjoy the fruity scent that most of their products have. 

6. Biore Aqua Rich Watery Essence
You can read my in-depth review on this product HERE. It smells of citrus, and has NO sunscreen scent at all. It doesn't feel greasy on the skin, or face, I don't mind wearing it all over my body at all as it feels like I'm not wearing sunscreen! I would repurchase it once I've ran out of this current tube. That's how much I'm in love with this sunscreen!

I like Japanese products when it comes to sunscreen. They usually don't smell of sunscreen at all, and they don't leave your face looking like ghost's. It surprises me how many old-fashioned sunscreens are out there still, as it's even hard to find them in Japan lately. What's your favourite sun protection items?

EOS Ultra Moisturizing Shave Cream Pomegranate Raspberry


EOS Ultra Moisturizing Shave Cream $4.89
I'm not going to lie, I had never used any shaving cream until I got this one a few weeks ago. I always used normal shower gel (terrible, I know) to shave, and it irritated my skin sometimes. I didn't pay attention to the process of shaving to begin with, and I didn't even think there was shaving cream specially made for women out there. But once I am educated that there were many kinds that smell and feel good, I was dying to try some out. I got this EOS one because it was on Vitacost, and the scent Pomegranate Raspberry sounded very appealing to me.


Look how cute the pump is!! 


The cream contains shea butter, oat and aloe which are known for their soothing effects. It's creamy and thick enough to sit on the wet skin. It smells like raspberry candies that I instantly fell in love with, it's a fresh scent with a little bit of sweetness.


It makes it a lot easier to shave. It prevents my skin to get irritated with a razor. It helps it to shave deeper I guess, which extend the length of time between shaving. It leaves my skin silky smooth that I feel like I don't even need to apply body cream afterwords, which I do anyway, and most importantly (for me) it leaves the subtle sweet scent on my skin.

Do you use shaving cream? What's your favourite?

Rituals Honey Touch Rich & Nourishing Body Cream


Rituals Honey Touch Rich & Nourishing Body Cream £17.00

I first got to know the brand Rituals just last year, when Fleur from Fleur de Force mentioned about this body cream on one of her videos. Then I remember she and Becky from Talk Becky Talk spoke more about the brand in one of their haul videos, that made me really want to try out some of their products. They said that the whole shop was spa-like and their products also smelt like spa. Who wouldn't like that?

But I was a little bit scared to try out their products without sniffing them because although I love good scented bath and shower products, I also can be pretty sensitive towards scents. Plus their products are not too pricey but not too affordable either especially YEN is getting weaker now. So when my husband offered to get it for me as a Christmas present, I was super happy that I could fly to the moon.


I wanted all the body cream they have got, but I decided to give "Indian Rose and Himalayan Honey" one a try.  The scent is just DIVINE!!! If you are hesitant to purchase this range of products online because you are not a big fan of a rose scent, don't worry about it. It smells nothing like rose. I don't like rose and floral scents too much either and that is one of the reasons why I didn't purchase it earlier, but it just smells like a spa treatment that you (might) get in Bali or Phuket or somewhere like those tropical islands, nothing like rose nor honey.

To be honest, I have more of a bang on description of the scent. It literally smells like a ladies' room in a very luxurious hotel. You know the ladies' room that doesn't even look like one, with beautiful decorations and an amazing powder room, that's what I am talking about! Sorry if I put you off, but if you like that kind of scent (a luxurious spa or a ladies' room, whichever it is) you would love this body cream.


The texture is literally like whipped butter cream. It moisturises my skin but is never feel heavy or greasy. It contains Dimethicone (silicone) which makes the skin surface silky and smooth, so you can dress immediately after applying this. 

Because I love the scent so much and I want to be wearing it 24/7, I've been applying this body cream every single day without forgetting to do so since I got it on Christmas -which is very impressive for me as I failed so many times to make it a habit. And it shows how much I adore this product. This new habit improved my skin condition for sure, as now I don't have any dry patches on my legs or arms that I tend to get during winter.


Now I'm curious about their body cream in the orange jar (Touch of Happiness) and the blue jar (Touch of Hammam). I also want to get their foaming shower gel when I go to England next time, as they don't ship any aerosol tins.  Have you tried any products from Rituals before? What's your favourite?

Biore Aqua Rich Watery Essence


Biore Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF50
I'm very picky when it comes to sunscreen. I hate the ones feel sticky or that leave white casts on my skin. More than that, I hate the ones that stinks of sunscreen. I had been lazy and never applied sunscreen on my face until I was 25 or something (which is terrible I know) and recently I managed to include it into my daily skincare routine somehow. But even now, I cannot bear the sunscreen smell. 

I like using a spray sunscreen on my body as it's very easy and quick, and it usually smells really nice like a body mist. And this one from Biore is my absolute favourite to use during summer on my face.


As you can see, and you can imagine from the name of it, it's very watery and light texture. It goes on clear when applied, and it feels like nothing is on. It doesn't feel sticky or greasy at all, yet it doesn't dry out my skin since it contains hyaluronic acid. It smells of grapefruits instead of the yucky sunscreen smell. What more can I ask for?

It's SPF50 PA+++ which is good enough to use at a beach, but at the same time it could be a bit too harsh to use on daily basis. I usually use SPF25-40 sunscreen during winter which should be enough, and I switch it to this Biore one in mid April when the sunbeam gets stronger. But if you are a type of person who works outside, or your skin is constantly exposed to the sun, I guess you should use SPF50 even in a colder season.


Do you use sunscreen every day? Which product is your favourite?

Caress Shower Gel -Worth the hype?


Caress Shower Gel in Passionate Spell
Some people may not care much about shower gels, but I do. I am a shower gel freak, I've got like 5 different shower gel bottles in my bathroom. I'm trying not to buy more but if I wasn't, I would be owning more than 50 bottles,  I swear! 

I didn't know anything about Caress until Tati mentioned in one of her videos. She was raving about how amazing it smelt and said that she had repurchased it several times. Whenever someone says "This shower gel smells heavenly" I get tempted to get it. I want to know what it smells like, and I just want to add it into my shower gel collection. I looked for a website that would ship Caress shower gel to Japan but I didn't find any, so I just gave up.

A few months later, I found those colourful bottles on the shelf at American Pharmacy when I was shopping in Shibuya. I smelt all of them and decided to pick this scent up. It was a few weeks later that I found out this scent is the exact one that Tati and Fleur were raving about.


The scent is described as a blend of Passionfruit and Fiery Orange Rose, but I don't smell any of them.  I smell a sweet caramel-like scent with a hint of sourness. It smells divine, like seriously divine. It could be the best smelling shower gel I've ever used in my life. It smells very sweet but it's not overpowering at all. It leaves the subtle sweet scent on my body after use which lingers for a while, but not too long. 

To me it smells a bit like Prada Candy L'eau that I've been wearing none-stop since last autumn. The only difference is that Prada Candy L'eau is pretty heavy and sweet that I might not wear during the summer, but Caress Passionate Spell is much lighter and has a tiny bit of a fruity scent which makes it usable when the weather is much warmer. 


I smelt 4 other ones at the store but this one was the best for sure. Other ones especially the purple one (I guess it was Sheer Twilight) was pretty perfumy and overpowering to me. 

Have you tried anything from Caress? What is your favourite scent? Let me know!


My Best Beauty Finds in 2013



Michael Todd Blue Green Algae Toner  
This is a very refreshing toner that I was loving throughout the summer, autumn and winter. It has blue green algae, organic kelp, hyaluronic acid and teatree which help to maintain an acne-free, moisturised skin. It smells so refreshing that I'm totally addicted to it! I apply it on a cotton pad and gently wipe my face with it. It's the perfect balance between refreshing and hydrating.

Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask
I don't need to write too much about this product, do I? There are so many amazing reviews about it, and I've written my in-depth review of this peach-smelling face mask a few weeks ago, so I'm not going to ramble about it here again, but my skin can't be the same without it. It smells amazing, feels brilliant on my skin, and the result is very impressive.

Nourish Revital-Eyes Eye Cream
I use it every morning and night. It contains peptides, amino acids, B vitamins and antioxidants to boost natural resilience against signs of ageing, and it also helps to reduce the pigmentation of my dark circles too.


LUSH Let the Good Times Roll
Thank you LUSH so much for making such a wonderful cleanser!!! It looks, feels and smells of cookie dough. If you love sweet scents like I do, it would be your dream come true to cleanse your face with cookie dough, isn't it? Plus it's super moisturising, perfect for dry skin. Thank god it's now available all year round.

Predia Spa et Mer Fango Double Cleanse
It's a very luxurious cleanser that makes you feel like you're in a spa. It gently removes my makeup without any oily residue, while moisturising my skin. It smells heavenly too.


Soap and Glory Smoothie Star Body Lotion

It smells very sweet and nutty without being overpowering. I'm not sure when I'll be able to use up this massive bottle, but I've been enjoying it very much since I got it in Jan 2013. It doesn't make my skin feel greasy at all yet hydrate the dry parts perfectly. And the scent lingers for hours.

Soap and Glory Sugar Crush Body Butter Cream  
Well...it might beat Smoothie Star to be honest! It smells like sweet yogurt when I open it but once it's settled on my skin it smells like sweet brown sugar with a hint of lime as it claims! Although this one is butter cream which must be heavier than body lotion, I feel that this one is lighter than Smoothie Star Body Lotion actually. I love them both anyway.

It's a 10 Miracle Leave-in Conditioner plus Keratin
The most effective leave-in conditioner, ever! It worked wonders on my hair, it made my hair silky smooth without any tangles. That's unbelievable because my hair is usually very frizzy, dry and very easy to get tangled. Plus it smells like hair salon. Bonus.

Soap and Glory Hand Food 
Love this hand cream! It's quite thick but doesn't make my hands feel greasy or over moisturised if that makes sense. I reapply it every 30 minutes at work just to enjoy the scent. Oh, and to hydrate my hands.

Soap and Glory HAND MAID  
Yes, Soap and Glory again. I hadn't used any hand sanitizers until I bought this one in London in March. It smells divine, lighter than Hand Food although it's the same scent. 


MUA Undress Me Too Palette
Such a useful palette for 4 pound! Although the staying power isn't great, the pigmentation is amazing overall and the shades are all wearable on daily basis. I love creating greyish smoky-eye look with the silver, purple and dark grey.

Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick / Notting Hill Nude
I've been wearing this lipstick none-stop since I got it. It's not completely matte but it's not shimmery or glittery. It has this rosy undertone to it that doesn't make my whole face like a zombie.
 
L'Oreal Glam Shine Stain Splash / Pink Resistance
I believe this shade is not available either in Japan or the UK, but if you love a very natural coral-pink shade, you should get it from eBay! It's such a beautiful shade that makes me look healthy. I love how it's buildable, too.

Rimmel London Exaggerate Undercover Shadow Primer
I purchased it because I couldn't afford the hyped-up primer from NARS, and I'm glad I did! It works really well as a primer, although it's doesn't have a colour-correcting effect. My eyeshadows stay much longer when I use it underneath them, and it's super affordable.

Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer
I'm so glad I did purchase it in London in March. I have shade1 and 2, that I use on my dark circles. I don't find them too drying as some people claim, but I wish they had more shades.

Max Factor Clump Defy Volumising Mascara
Such a good mascara, isn't it? It really doesn't make my eyelashes clumpy, it just coats each eyelash that I don't need false lashes at all! I wish I could buy it here in Japan.

Maybelline Volum' Express The Rocket Mascara
My favourite mascara that I can buy in Japan for sure. I like it better than Falsies just because it makes my eyelashes fuller than Falsies, which I found the formula was a little bit too wet for my liking. I love this mascara so much that I'll repurchase once I run out of it.

Maybelline Dream Touch Blush / Peach
In 2013, I fell in love with cream blushers. I also liked the one from Bourjois, but this particular shade easy to wear with any kind of makeup, in any seasons. It feels pretty wet on the skin but once you blend it out with Stippling Brush from Real Techniques, it creates this pretty cheeks that looks like it's from within.

Maybelline ColorTattoo Metal / Barely Branded
This shade works amazingly as an eyeshadow base! It's such an elegant campaign colour that I wear every single day underneath any eyeshadows. I just hope it doesn't dry out until I actually hit the pan.


What are your best beauty products you discovered in 2013? Let me know!


Hope you have a happy new year!

LUSH PONCHE Shower Gel


LUSH PONCHE Shower Gel  900yen
I'm sure it's not just me who goes to LUSH like crazy around this time of the year. I love their bath bombs, bubble bars, soaps, cleansers...basically everything. I saw this shower gel last holiday season, but it wasn't appealing to me at all. I smelt it at the shop but it smelt funny in my opinion. 

But this year, when I tried out the sandy body butter called Sandy Santa on my hands, I fell in love with the scent. When I hesitated to buy it because it seemed to be a hard work to use it in the shower (you have to crumble the cute santa-shaped body butter and make it into paste before use!), a shop assistant told me that Ponche and Sandy Santa shares the same scent. So I decided to try out Ponche to see if I like it.



You might smell Tequila when you smell it directly from the bottle but it turns to this pleasant fruity scent when you use it in the shower. It smells fresh and fruity, just like Ponche that the name suggests. I love the scent so much, but unfortunately it doesn't leave the scent on my skin after use. I assume it's because of highly-volatile citrus essential oils in it, but I wish it lingered a little bit longer.

Now I'm interested in Snow Fairy as it's supposed to be the most popular product in the holiday collection, although I'm not a huge fan of the scent. But just like Ponche smells different in use, Snow Fairy could smell differently in use. I'm just scared if it's overpowering and makes me feel sick in the shower. Have you tried Ponche or Snow Fairy? What's your favourite holiday product from LUSH?

October Must-Haves


It had been pretty hot in Tokyo until the beginning of October this year. I didn't need a jacket at all to go to work as long as I had a cardigan in my bag. But from the middle to the end of October it got colder and the air was much drier. My skin reacted immediately. It became much drier and makeup -especially foundation- didn't look as good as it used to be on my face. These items that I'm going to talk about today are the ones that I couldn't live without in October.



NUXE Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm

To be honest with you, I'm not sure whether this is the best lip balm in the world or not. Probably not, but still I love this lip balm. It has this subtle scent of lemon and honey which I love, and the texture is so rich and moisturising. It's pretty heavy so I only use it at night. You might think it's a bit pricey for a lip balm but actually it lasts forever. I've been using it for a year now but I just have no idea when I would be able to use it up.



Glonaturals Face Cream
I purchased this face cream from Vitacost. This brand Glanaturals is their original brand which came out a few months ago I believe, and I purchased this particular cream as it contains argan oil and hyaluronic acid that looked like a perfect face cream for winter. I loved it as it feels like a whipped cream on my skin somehow! BUT after a week of use, I realised that it was giving my skin tiny rash. I didn't want to think it was because of this product but once I stopped using it, the rash had gone. When I took this photo I was still thinking it was saving my skin from a hell of dryness....and maybe it was, but it worked in a wrong way as well. But my mum is enjoying using it very much, so it's just that my skin didn't like it.

Nourish Revital-Eyes Eye Cream
I just wrote a depth-review about this amazing eye cream, so I'm not going to go on and on about it here. But believe me, this is the best eye cream I've ever used.


CODINA Argan Oil
I believe Codina is a French brand. You can get a lot of use out of this pure argan oil. My favourite way of use is to apply it after face cream to add more moisture. A good pure argan oil doesn't stay on the skin surface for long, it instantly sinks in. It has a nutty and fruity scent which is of course natural, which is not particularly a good smell but I don't mind at all. You also can use it on your hair, cuticles and body. It really saved my dry skin.


Moroccanoil Light Oil Treatment
I have fine, limp and damaged hair. Oils tend to weigh my hair down but this one doesn't. It smells like vanilla extract that you put in a cake dough combined with sophisticated-smelling perfume, but not overpowering at all. I apply it only on the ends of my hair after blow-drying and it prevents my hair to get tangled through out the day.

AESOP  Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm


Looking for a hand cream which is not sticky or greasy yet hydrating, plus smelling amazing? You should try this hand cream. This could be your dream one! My mum gave it to me on my birthday this year and since then I'm obsessed with this product. It smells of lavender, orange and rosemary that you must be able to imagine how good it is. It absorbs super quickly when I apply it on my skin, it just instantly disappears. I just applied this hand cream on the back of my hands as I'm writing it, and after like 5 seconds it's completely gone. Now my hands are very smooth and silky as if I haven't applied anything but do have naturally hydrated soft skin if that makes sense. I always have this hand cream in my bag or on my desk and keep applying it just to enjoy the scent, which makes my hands hydrated as well.

What was your October Must-Have? Let me know!