Affordable Makeup Haul: Miniso

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L-R: Miniso Purify Concealer ($3), Perfect Skin Lipstick ($6), Miniso Refreshing Cucumber Mist ($6), & Mini Poni Shell Makeup Base ($5)

In my last post (which you can read here), I talked about my recent trip to Miniso, a Japanese/Chinese affordable lifestyle shop. If you don’t know what Miniso is, just imagine Daiso but a little bit more expensive and more high-quality items. While at Miniso, I picked up a few makeup products that I thought worked pretty well. Here are my thoughts on them.

Miniso Purify Concealer Pen in 01 Ivory ($3): This is one of the concealers that I talked about in my last post. I really like this concealer because it is creamy and super blendable. For the price, you can’t really beat it. I used it again today and found that it works even better with a brush. I highly recommend this concealer and you just can’t really beat the super affordable price tag.

Perfect Skin Lipstick in 06 Pale Mauve ($6): This lipstick is so cute, I mean, just look at that star-shaped form and the nice silver packaging that it’s in. I originally wasn’t going to get a lipstick, but after swatching this color, I thought it was really cute. I don’t think the name matches with the color, it’s more of a coral/pink rather than a pale mauve to me. It looks really bright in the tube but it goes on more of a sheer than an opaque lipstick. It’s actually really moisturizing and I found the color to mix beautifully with one of my nude lipsticks. What I love about this lipstick is the silver tube that it’s in, it has a magnetic cap so it goes down automatically. The packaging and formula seems to be something more high end than a $6 tube of lipstick at Miniso. There are a lot of fun and bright colors so I would definitely recommend this if you want to get out of your comfort zone and try something affordable and new for summer.

Miniso Cucumber Refreshing Moisture Mist ($6): I. LOVE. THIS. Seriously, I can’t believe I discovered this gem, this was really my favorite buy of this whole purchase. I also was not going to purchase this because I didn’t want to put some random facial sprays on my face. But once I saw that it was Made in Korea and the ingredients list had some pretty good stuff in it, I bought it real quick to try. This is a HUGE bottle and I feel that it would last me for awhile. This seriously beats my Mario Badescu Rosewater spray and I’ve been only reaching for this since I got it. It’s such a high-quality spray for a fantastically affordable price. My large Mario Badescu bottle sets me back at $12 whereas this is twice as big for half the price. I don’t love this because of the price though. I love this because I personally feel that it works better than the Mario Badescu and I’ve been using MB for years. I’ve used many different facial sprays before and always go back to Mario Badescu because I personally thought that it worked best, but now that I discovered the Miniso one, I will definitely be buying that over MB. I spray this after I am done with my foundation & powders and it just melts my makeup seamlessly together and gives me the best glowy look. I am all about that glow, I really dislike a super matte look because, to me, that just looks dehydrated & cakey. Another thing is that the spray nozzle is so good, it sprays out a very fine mist and goes on really well. Also, the scent is very nice too, it’s a light cucumber scent and it isn’t overbearing, it goes away almost immediately once it gets on your face. I will keep buying this over and over again and am SOOO happy I that I picked it up. I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend this and if you are near a Miniso, you need to run out right now to get it.

Mini Poni Shell Makeup Base in 02 Pink ($5): I got this because I always love a glowy base for my foundation. This is a light pink and has tiny iridescent glitters in it but the glitters do not show up on your face. I actually had higher hopes for this product but found that I like this but don’t love it. I expected this to give me a better glow but it really didn’t. It goes on nicely, blends nicely, but it doesn’t have a wow factor.  I think it was about $5 and Mini Poni is one of Miniso’s makeup brand that is picking up in popularity right now. It isn’t bad for the price and if you are on a budget and want a sort of glowy base then I would recommend trying this.

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L-R: Miniso Purify Concealer in 01 Ivory, Perfect Skin Lipstick in 06 Pale Mauve, & Mini Poni Shell Makeup Base in 02 Pink

Overall, I really am happy with my Miniso purchases. I hope you enjoyed it as well and let me know if you do end up going to a Miniso and picking up some of these products, I always want to hear what you think about my recommendations. Thanks for reading! 🙂

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Review: 5 Different Undereye Concealers

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L-R: Miniso ($3), Too Faced ($28), Makeup Revolution ($7), The Saem ($5), and Catrice ($6)

I am a bit obsessed with undereye concealers and I wear it religiously. I won’t leave my house without putting on some concealers under my eyes. I have undereye circles and puffiness due to a combination of hereditary and sleepless nights back in high school & college years. Nowadays, I do get an adequate amount of sleep, but even that is not enough to make my undereye issues go away. It’s been more of a problem now that I’m in my mid 20’s. So I am always on the hunt for really good undereye concealers. I go through them very quickly because I like to put a good amount under my eyes. I prefer my undereye areas to be bright and glamorous instead of natural. These are the 5 that I picked up recently and they range from $3 to $28. I pretty much like all of them except one but I’ll describe it more below! =D

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L-R: Miniso (01 Ivory), Too Faced (Light Nude), Makeup Revolution (C2), The Saem (1.5), Catrice (005 Light Natural)

Miniso Purify Concealer Pen in 01 Ivory ($3): If you haven’t heard of Miniso, it’s a Japanese/Chinese affordable store (kind of like Daiso but a bit more high quality & expensive) that is popping up all over Southern California. I went to the first Miniso in SoCal located in Pasadena and fell in love with the stuff they had there. They have super cute household stuff and a very affordable makeup section. Recently, they’ve been aggressively opening up stores in the SoCal area and they happen to open one up at Mainplace mall so I decided to check it out. I originally was not going to get this concealer but when I swatched it, I really liked how creamy it was on my skin. There were only 2 shades available, 01 & 02, I got the lighter shade because I am pretty pale and the lighter shade has a yellow undertone. I really like this concealer because it actually blends very nicely with my fingers and it literally melts into my skin. This guy surprisingly stayed all day and did not crease on my skin. For a cream stick concealer, this is very creamy and nice. If you are on a budget & near a Miniso, you should definitely check this guy out, it’s only $2.39 to be exact and not bad for an affordable option. For the price & how well it works, I would give this an 8/10!

Too Faced Born This Way Concealer in Light Nude ($28): I picked this one up at Macy’s so I think this color is only available there. I like this concealer but I’m not sure if I am in love with it. It hasn’t really wowed me whenever I wear it but it is a good concealer. For a high-end concealer, it works just fine but I doubt I would repurchase it again though. I found that this concealer is a bit thin so the coverage is a nice light to medium. It won’t completely cover up your undereye circles if you are looking for a heavy duty concealer. The good thing is that the color matches with me very nicely and it blends out pretty well. This didn’t crease on me and pretty much stayed on all day. I would give this guy a 7/10.

Makeup Revolution Concealer in C2 ($7): This is the most hyped up drugstore concealer on the market right now. Even I bought into the hype and kept visiting my Ulta to see if they’ve stocked up on it. Once they finally did, I ran out to pick one up. Like usual, almost all the colors were basically sold out and there were only a couple of colors left. I originally was going to get C6 but after swatching them, C6 was too dark for me and C2 is a lot better (the C2 was one of the only ones that were still in stock). Let me give you the description on Ulta’s website regarding this color “C2: for fair skin tones with yellow undertone). I don’t think there are any yellow undertones in this color, it is gray on my skin. This color really disappointed me when I first wore it and there are no other colors in their range that worked for me. it really washed me out and I think you can see it on my swatch above that there isn’t really a yellow undertone, and if so then it’s very little. Anyways, on to the actual wear of this concealer, it’s not good. Sorry but not sorry, I know many people say that this guy is a dupe for the Tarte Shape Tape. While I have never worn Shape Tape before but I’m sure it’s worth much more to just buy the Shape Tape and skip this Makeup Revolution one. This concealer is thicker than the Too Faced one I mentioned above but it does not cover anything and it doesn’t blend into my skin. I wore this a few times and every time, it would be patchy and I would have to end up putting another concealer on top to save it. Now I’m not saying that this won’t work on your skin, I’m just saying that this did not work on mine. If you still want to try it then, by all means, go ahead. I would give this a 1/10 (1 because the packaging is cute).

The Saem Cover Perfection Concealer in 1.5 ($5): This is another well-beloved concealer in the K Beauty community. While I do like this concealer for the coverage, I found that it would creases on me around my inner corners. The color is a bit off in person but there weren’t many colors to begin with. There are only 3 colors and this was the only one that was best for my skin tone. When I swatched this, the color leaned pinker on my hand but when I put it under my eyes and blend it out, the color matches really nicely. I would still continue to use this because it is a nice concealer but I would have to find ways for it not to crease. Even if I set it with a powder, it would still crease in the inner corners of my eyes. For the price, it’s not bad but you don’t get that much products in the tube. I would give this a 7/10.

Catrice Liquid Camouflage Concealer in 005 Light Natural ($6): Last but not least, Catrice! I first heard about Catrice when my parents & I went to Europe many many years back. My mom and I went into a store in Italy and bought a foundation from this brand. She really liked it and was wondering if we can get it in the States. We never found it here but it recently popped up inside of Ulta’s stores. I heard many good reviews on this concealer and lots of Beauty Gurus like this so I thought I would give this a try. I ended up really liking it. I think it’s a nice concealer that covers very well and blends out very nicely. It doesn’t crease on my skin and I think that’s very important. Once a concealer creases, it turns me off and I end up not reaching for it as much. The only downside to this concealer, like many of the concealers above, is the color range. This concealer only comes in 3 shades at my Ulta. I picked up the lightest one and it fits me perfectly, but if you have darker skin tones than me then it would be an issue since all the shades are very light. Other than the shade range, I really have no complaints with this concealer and for the price, it’s pretty darn good. I would give this a 9/10.

So there you have it, you don’t have to spend a ton of money for a good concealer, in my case, drugstore brands work just as well or even better. I hope you find my reviews informative and please give me suggestions on your favorite concealers, I am always on the hunt for that Holy Grail. Maybe I will try the Tarte Shape Tape next, although I do need to finish these 5 first but since I go through concealers very quickly, it shouldn’t take long! 😛

As always, thank you for reading! ❤

Anatasia Beverly Hills Soft Glow Palette

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Hi all! Today, I want to talk about the new Anastasia Beverly Hills Soft Glow Palette ($42) that I recently got at Macy’s. I am going show you some swatches and talk about the quality of it. Let’s get started! 🙂

ORG__DSC5326.jpgORG__DSC5328.jpgI went to Macy’s to buy my little cousin a Sweet Sixteen birthday present since she said she wanted some eyeshadows. I browsed the Anastasia section and decided to get her the Modern Renaissance palette when I saw this guy. Brand new, just released, and wasn’t even out yet, only pre-order. I swatched a few of the shades and completely fell in love. I’ve never owned any Anastasia palettes before but I know they’re cult favorites amongst many people. Thus, I did not buy it nor did I really think about it much since I own so many eyeshadow palettes already. Then, fast forward a week later, Macy’s had its extreme sales event where you can get 15% off all beauty products. I then thought to myself, well why not, I’ll just pick this guy up and boy was I glad I did. The pigmentation with this palette is extreme, and the colors are so buttery and creamy. You can definitely create some amazing day or night looks with this palette. I have to say that there are some great mattes and amazing shimmers in this palette. The shimmer colors are super pigmented and soft so you can really pack it on your lids with no problems. The mattes are actually very wearable and can be used as great transition colors. The brush that comes with it is surprisingly good, it’s not as soft as many other brushes but it really does a great job with precision and blendability. All in all, I think this is a great purchase and I can’t wait to create many different looks with this.

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Top Row (L-R): Tempera, Glistening, Orange Soda, Rose Pink, Sultry, Bronze, Mulberry

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Bottom Row (L-R): Dusty Rose, Fairy, Burnt Orange, Sienna, Rustic, Cyprus Umber, Noir

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Here’s a sort of smoky-ish daytime eye look I created with this palette yesterday.

Overall, this is a very high quality and versatile palette that can be used all year long. I really like it and I know that I can create some pretty cute eye looks with this. Once again, thanks for reading! 🙂

New Holy Grail Foundation – L.A. Girl Pro Matte

Hi all, I hope you are all having a fantastic week so far! I recently discovered a new foundation when I went to Ulta. Actually, I first heard about it through my fav YouTuber, Tati. She tested it out and really liked it so I became slightly curious but never thought about buying it. The reason is that this foundation is supposed to be full coverage and matte, which I don’t like much because I usually go for a more dewy look, and I already have other foundations that I love. Nonetheless, I was at Ulta one day because I wanted to use my $5 off $10 coupon and came across a new display of these babies. I said, why not, let’s just try it, and if I don’t like it then I can always return it. That being said, let me introduce to you my new favorite and Holy Grail status foundation, L.A. Girl Pro Matte HD Long Wear Matte Foundation. This retailed at my Ulta for $8.99 and I got it for a few dollars cheaper because I had a coupon. But for $8.99, this thing is a steal and it works SO WELL for a drugstore foundation. I’ve used and tried so many different brands and types of high-end foundations before and found that drugstore works just as well or even better sometimes.

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L.A. Girl Pro Matte HD Long Wear Matte Foundation in Beige ($8.99 at Ulta)

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Swatch of the foundation in natural lighting (color is Beige)

This foundation gave me the most flawless finish ever and it blended into my skin very easily. I used a beauty blender with this and found that it gave me a matte but glowing finish. It also gives me a very your-skin-but-better look and feels like I’m not wearing anything. FYI, I also used a pore refining primer under this so I think it’s always best to use a good primer first when applying any types of foundation. This gave me great coverage and really covered up many of my imperfections and acne scars. The consistency with this foundation is very creamy and the only drawback is the interesting smell. It doesn’t really bother me much and goes away instantly but when you first pump it out, you will smell a faint fishy-like scent (this might be different for everyone, I don’t know). The color match with this foundation is AMAZING and the color Beige that I got matches my skin perfectly (it’s light and has a yellow undertone). It’s rare for me to find a foundation that matches my skin instantly without me having to mix it with another color. I can just use this foundation alone without having to worry about mixing it to get the perfect color match for me. I think this is a steal and I am very impressed with the natural finish, high coverage, and wearability of this foundation. I have found that this foundation lasted me a full day, as in a full 18 hours, from 6 AM to 12 AM. I wore this last Saturday when I had an early morning event where I got ready at 6 AM and didn’t take it off until about midnight and found that it stayed put on my skin without breaking apart and making me oily. I am going to insert a car selfie of me below to show you how flawless my foundation looked on the day that I had the early event.

IMG_3173Overall, I love this foundation and it is definitely my new Holy Grail. Thanks for reading everyone! =D

“No-Makeup” Makeup Look + The Best Foundation Combo

IMG_2953.JPGOn Sundays and on my days off, I like to relax and keep my makeup routine simple. Often times I opt for a dewy base and keep everything else neutral. That means no harsh contour, a super matte finish, or heavy colors on any parts of my face. Below are the products and steps that I follow for a low-maintenance and natural no-makeup makeup look. Also, keep reading for my favorite foundation combo to give you the most gorgeous and flawless finish!

IMG_2959.JPGAfter washing my face and prepping my skin with an essence and moisturizer, I usually skip primers on days like these and go straight to the coverage. But before using bb cream & foundation, I like to depuff my eyes using the Physicians Formula RefreshMint Cucumber & Bamboo Eye De-Puffer ($8). This is a new product that came out this year from Physicians Formula. It’s very cooling and helps to depuff my under eyes because I get pretty bad eye bags! I then use my heavy duty Anastasia Pot Concealer in Shade 1.5 ($18) (I think this might be discontinued) to lightly cover up any scars and marks on my face. I also like to put on a layer of the O’Keeffe’s Lip Repair Chapstick ($4) so that my lips are hydrated by the time I put a lip color on. I found this randomly at Target because was suffering from intense chapped lip a few months ago and wanted something strong. This works really well despite its unattractive packaging and affordable price. I guess “never judge a book by its cover” applies in this case! 🙂

IMG_2954.JPG*Drumroll please* Introducing you the best foundation combo for a dewy and glowy finish. I found the Etude House Precious Mineral BB Cream in Beige ($16), while randomly wandering through a new Korean Beauty/Clothing store at Westminster Mall. I bought it on a whim because I wanted a low-maintenance and light coverage on my days off. As with any Korean BB creams or foundations, the shades are always super light and the range is very limited. Even though I am pretty light skin, this BB cream was too light for me so one day I randomly added my The Ordinary Foundation Coverage Foundation in 2.1 Y ($7) to darken it. WOW is all I have to say about this new-found combo that I “discovered”. Despite how opposite these two products are (one is a BB cream & the other is a high coverage foundation) I really like it because it matches my skin perfectly and the formulas of both products work so well together to give me a glowy finish. I first do a small pea size of the BB cream and a tiny 1/3 pump of the foundation on the back of my hand and then blend it together on my face with a beauty blender or my fingers. I actually found that I like blending it with my fingers because the warmth of my hands melt the combo better and gives me more of a flawless finish. The BB Cream has an SPF of 50+ so I skip the sunscreen step.

IMG_2955.JPGThese next steps are still focused on the face & cheeks area. I use my L’Oreal Magic Lumi Highlighter ($12) concealer to cover up some dark circles under my eyes (I usually go heavier during my normal work days). I really like this concealer because it’s a dupe for the YSL Touche Eclat concealer but it runs out too quickly because it’s a twist up wand. I used to be a die-hard fan of the YSL and would go through tubes and tubes of it until I found mineral oil as one of the main ingredients and didn’t want to pay $40 for mineral oil. I am always on the hunt for the next best concealer and recently purchased a Korean one on Yesstyle. I will do a separate post on all of my new purchases once I receive them. The next step includes using the Nars Liquid Blush in Dolce Vita ($30) to give my cheeks a bit of a healthy flush. I got a sample of this at Sephora (so I don’t have a picture of it) because I wanted to try it out first before dropping $30 for the full-size bottle. I also dab a little bit of whatever is left over on my fingers onto my lips to give it a bit of color so I won’t be including a step for lips later. After finishing the cheeks, I move on to highlight, I used the Sephora Collection Radiant Luminizing Drops in Morning Light ($14) to dab a bit on the high points of my cheeks, nose bridge, and cupid’s bow. Finally, I use a tiny bit of Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder ($38) to set my undereye and T-zone. I want to keep my face dewy throughout the day so I don’t set any other parts or use a heavy hand to pack on the powder.

IMG_2956.JPGIMG_2957.JPGFor my brows, I kind of keep it simple. I already have my brows microbladed when I visited Vietnam in 2016 so all I have to do is fill in some parts to make it even and longer. I use the Physicians Formula Longwearing Brow Gel in Medium Brown ($10). I really like this because it’s kind of a dupe for the Wunderbrow but a lot thinner and less drying. This next step is basically the last step in my routine, the eyes area. I use the lightest color called Relaxed in the Smashbox Cover Shot Palette in Ablaze ($29) all over my eyes. I then add the H&M Eyeshadow in Cuvée Rosé ($10 originally but I got it on sale for $3) in my crease and blend it out so it gives me natural definition without it being too harsh. After that, I line my under eyes with Essence Extreme Lasting Eye Pencil in Silky Nude ($3). I love this nude eyeliner, it is sooo creamy & pigmented, I would highly recommend! I, then, curl my lashes and put on one coat of L’Oreal Last Paradise Waterproof Mascara ($10) on both the top and bottom lashes.

IMG_2958.JPGI like to keep it very dewy so I finish it all off with about 3 or 4 spritzes of the Mario Badescu Rosewater Facial Spray ($12).

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Here is me, in natural lighting, right after finishing with this makeup look! 🙂

That’s pretty much all of the steps that I take to achieve a natural no-makeup makeup look on a relaxing Sunday or on my days off. I hope you like this look and thank you for reading! 🙂

P.S. I will also do a separate post on my everyday work makeup look, which is a bit heavier and has more coverage than this natural one.

Guaranteed Glowy Skin – Korean Skincare Routine + My Story

I started this blog back in 2012 when I was still a college student to share my affordable beauty tips and hacks. I basically stopped posting anything since the end of 2012 because, well, life happened. Fast forward 6 years later, I’ve graduated from college, gotten a full-time job, matured, went through a few breakups & tons of horrible dates, changed my clothing styles countless of times, and went from affordable makeup/skincare to high end and then now to a healthy mixture of both. I actually wanted to start this blog back up again because I am attending law school this fall, working fewer hours, and focusing on preparing myself for my big move to NorCal. Since going more part-time at my job a few months ago, I actually have more time to dedicate myself to the research of new and effective beauty and skincare products. I want to commit this blog to my law school journey and the beauty routines behind it.

Recently, I’ve been really getting into Korean skincare because of how gorgeous Korean women’s skins are. I also realized that Korean products utilize more innovative and natural ingredients than American skincare at a much more affordable price point. We’re talking about snail secretion, birch juice, Centella Asiatica, and so much more. Some of these names are odd and hard to pronounce but the benefits behind it are huge.

My skin is an interesting story in itself, I’ve gone through different phases of my skin throughout the years. In high school, I had flawless skin, not even one pimple on my face, I did not need to use any foundation or even much skin care products. I would take a nap and wake up with the plumpest and softest baby skin ever. Then college hits and the stress of heavy work loads, part-time jobs, and extracurricular activities took a toll on my skin. I started to break out on my cheeks and would get really bad hormonal cystic pimples around that time of the month. They would go away but would leave me with very noticeable scars and discoloration. At that time, I wasn’t very informed on skin care because I never had to worry about it before, so I was just using whatever was available to me and not really paying attention to the ingredients that I put on my face. Then, in the middle of my Sophomore year of college, I couldn’t take the bad skin I had anymore so I decided to use whatever money I had to splurge on Origins products. I would spend hundreds of dollars at Origins and it really did drastically helped my skin to recover. Fast forward 3 years later, Origins no longer was effective on my skin, it really didn’t do much anymore because my skin got used to it and the positive effects stopped. Also, I couldn’t justify spending so much money for something that no longer worked. My skin was now clear and looking a lot better than before but I wanted more, I wanted plumper, smoother, and softer skin. So I started researching into new products that I can try out and came across Korean skincare. I started watching Youtube and researching on Amazon on cult favorite Korean skincare products. The first products that I bought on Amazon were the FaceShop Rice Foaming Cleanser and Mizon Snail Wrinkle Care Sleeping Pack (which I still love and use). Then after a lot more research, I went out and bought many more products to add to my skincare routine. I really enjoy the 10-step Korean beauty ritual that is popular right now and I am somewhat adhering to it. I find it oddly relaxing to double cleanse all of my makeup off and pat on different products to my skin after a long and tiring day. Below are the steps to my skin care and a list of what I am currently using to achieve glowy, dewy, and gorgeous skin. I will break it down into 3 categories for my night time routine and 4 categories for my daytime routine. Night time routine consists of double cleansing, essence, and serums/moisturizers. Daytime routine includes cleansing, essence, moisturizer, and sunscreen.

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These products are my current favorites, I will describe more about them below.

Night Routine

I like to spend a bit more time at night to thoroughly take off my makeup and hydrate my skin to prep it for a night of sleep so the steps here are a lot more than morning time.

Double Cleanse

Honestly, what is a Korean beauty routine without a good double cleanse? I used to use Bioderma Micellar water to first take off my makeup (I still have half a bottle and still do love it/use it sometimes) but I found that there are still residues of makeup left after cleansing. Here are the products that I use:

-Heimish All Clean Balm, $19: I love this stuff, it really melts off all the makeup on my face and leaves my skin super soft. I first heard about cleansing balm through Banilo Co, the cult favorite and well-beloved cleansing balm of most Korean women. But after thorough research, I found that it uses mineral oil as the main ingredient. Mineral oil is a by-product of crude oil, which is what gasoline is made out of. Don’t believe me? Just Google up mineral oil and you will see. The beauty industry buys mineral oil because it’s cheap and can be added to any types of beauty products. I definitely do not want something like that on my skin and I actually found that it irritates my delicate facial skin. So, when I came across Heimish All Clean Balm, I discovered the ingredient list to be really awesome, it has natural ingredients and does not utilize mineral oil for its effectiveness. The price is actually a few dollars cheaper than the Banilo Co range. The texture of the Heimish balm is like melting solid coconut oil into your hands. It’s really satisfying to see it melts on your face and takes all of the makeup off. It has a sort of herbal scent and the packaging is super hygienic and adorable.

-Cosrx Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser, $12: I really like this cleanser because it’s super gentle on my skin and does not strip away anything, leaving my skin baby soft. I started my venture into Korean skincare with the rice foaming cleanser from the FaceShop. I still really like that cleanser but I found it to be a little bit harsher and would leave my face with that dry and squeaky clean feeling afterward.

Essence: 

I know I totally skipped the toner section but I haven’t really ventured into Korean toners just yet. I recently bought a toner from Secret Key and I am waiting for it to be shipped to my house so I can add that to my routine. In the meantime, I am using a cult favorite essence that was available at Sephora (Sephora no longer carries it but you can still find it online).

May Coop Raw Sauce, $43: I love this product, I really had no expectations when I first got this product but it has become a staple in my morning and night routine. This is described as a toner, emulsion, and essence all in one, but I am just using it as an essence for now. Honestly, it’s so relaxing to splash and pat this stuff on my skin right after cleansing. It really hydrates and plumps my skin up to prepare it for the steps that come after. The texture to this is kind of watery but viscous and non-sticky, it absorbs into the skin right away. The smell is very interesting, to me, it smells kind of like subtle men’s cologne, I know some people have a different view of the smell but I honestly really like it and find it relaxing after my shower. The main ingredient in this is 93% maple tree sap and it has different botanicals and extracts for extra goodness.

Serums & Moisturizers: 

This is the fun part, I have actually tried a bunch of different types of serums and oils from many different brands including Josie Maran, Tarte, Physicians Formula, The Ordinary, Caudalie, etc. Nonetheless, no matter what types of serums or oils I use, I always have to have Argan oil in my skincare steps. It is really an extraordinary oil, it hydrates, plumps, and protects my skin. Currently, I am incorporating a Vitamin C serum to my routine to help combat acne scars and discolorations and to help with the brightening of my complexion.

-Trader Joe’s Argan Oil, $7: I’ve used $50 argan oils before and many different brands of argan oils but I found that it all works the same, the only difference is the brand and packaging. Thus, when Trader Joe’s released an argan oil, I was super excited. I know Trader Joe’s has organic, good quality, and affordable products so I knew their argan oil would be excellent. I really like the Trader Joe’s Argan Oil for its price point and its effectiveness in moisturizing my skin.

-Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Serum Drops, $23: I recently added this to my regiment because I wanted a powerful serum to help with my discolorations and acne scars. This particular serum is a cult favorite with many Korean women and bloggers. People have raved about this so I gave in and purchased one. It was a bit too strong at first for my face, thus giving me little white heads in the morning after waking up. But I started diluting it with my argan oil and found that it’s much better that way. I wake up with fresh and glowing skin after using this. I can’t wait to use it more and see even better results. The consistency of this serum is very light and I thought that it would smell citrusy, but found that it was odorless.

-Mizon Snail Wrinkle Care Sleeping Pack, $17: This is the last step in my night skincare routine, I put this on top to seal everything in. I got this as an alternative to the ever-popular Mizon Snail Cream because I saw reviews that the snail cream is not as thick and moisturizing for night usage. I really like this because it absorbs into my skin quickly and leaves me with a super moisturizing film on top. My skin is combo so it gets oily only on the T-zone and dry everywhere else so this cream really helps to moisturize my whole face. I found that most American night moisturizers would just absorb into my skin too quickly and make it instantly dry again. This does not do that, it really does a good job of keeping my skin hydrated all night long. The texture to this is very goopy because the main ingredient is snail secretion but I really don’t mind because it doesn’t feel sticky on my face.

*I actually use an under eye serum but didn’t include it in this list because I don’t see a difference with using it. I recently bought a new eye cream to try so I will include it in the next blog post.


Day Time Routine

I usually like to keep my daytime routine very quick and low maintenance so the steps are a lot less than the night time.

Cleanse:

-Cosrx Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser, $12: I use this same cleanser for day and night but without the oil-based cleanser for daytime. I used to be a bit more low maintenance (and lazy) so I literally just used Bioderma Micellar water to take off any gunk in the morning. Nowadays though, I want a bit more of a thorough cleanse so I use this cleanser instead.

Essence:

May Coop Raw Sauce, $43: Again, I also use this in the morning after cleansing so that my skin is hydrated and plump. I used to not even use an essence in the morning because I’m kind of low maintenance so I don’t want to have so many products cluttering up my bathroom. But I figured to try and incorporate this because it does such a great job of plumping my skin up for the moisturizer that follows.

Moisturizer:

-Cosrx Oil-Free Ultra Moisturizing Lotion, $22: I really like this moisturizer in that it is oil-free and doesn’t make my face a greaseball when I use it. I find its light texture and consistency very attractive because I really don’t need a heavy film sitting on top of my face before my makeup in the morning. Even though this is very light, it does a phenomenal job of moisturizing my face. I have found that American morning moisturizers tend to leave my face dehydrated, especially in the winter because it’s so light. This moisturizer is also very mild because it doesn’t break me out and give me small bumps at the end of the day.

Sunscreen:

-Algenist Sublime Defense Ultra Lightweight UV Defense Fluid SPF 50, $28: When I was younger, I never cared much about protection against the sun. It wasn’t until much later that I got into daily sunscreen use for my face. I always hated the typical thick and goopy sunscreen that is easily available in stores. I came across this sunscreen accidentally at Sephora, I got a small sample of it and fell in love so went back to buy the full size. It’s not Korean because Algenist is a San Francisco based brand so it’s a bit more pricey than a typical Korean sunscreen fluid you can find. I really like this because its milky consistency just melts on my face and doesn’t leave my face sticky or with a white cast. The only downside to this is the high price point for a super small tube. I did buy a different Korean brand sunscreen when I took a trip to Riley Rose so I will be testing that one out after I am done with this.

..And that wraps up my current day and night skincare routine for glowy, dewy, plump, and hydrated skin. I know it’s a bit long but I want to be able to give you thorough information regarding the different products that I use. I actually just ordered a bunch of new Korean essences, toners, and exfoliators so I will be trying those out once it arrives and makes separate posts about it. Thank you for reading!

New Shoes!

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ASOS PARIS Studded Pointed High Heels

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ASOS ARROW Point Ankle Boots with Toecap

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Sole Society Suzanne

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Sole Society Waverly

Besides being obssesed with jackets, I am completely in LOVE with shoes, no words can describe my profound love for them. Materialistic? Sadly, yes but I believe that shoes do not make a person, but the person make the shoes! If you can rock it with confidence, why not? Anyways, these are some of the new babies that I have purchased recently, I fell in love with all of them and I believe they are great additions to my shoes closet! What do you guys think? Maybe I will do a separate review post of all of them once I receive my ASOS shoes.

Natural

Photo on 12-13-12 at 2.12 PM #8Photo on 12-13-12 at 2.12 PM #3Photo on 12-13-12 at 2.12 PMHello there! So here is what I call my “natural” make-up look, I have been wearing this look for the past few days since I believe that it is such an easy and gorgeous everyday look. I love how my face is soft, glowy, and everything is kept to a minimum. Here are the make-up I used to achieve this look.

Face

1. Sleek Be Beautiful Blemish Balm

2. Original Formula AirSpun Loose Face Powder

3. E.L.F Blush in Coral

4. The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer Highlighter

Eyes

1. Maybelline Eye Studio in Sinful Sinnamon (light sweep over the lid)

2. Naked Palette in Creep (light sweep over the lid)

3. Maybelline the Colossal Volum’ Express Mascara

Lips

1. Mox Botanicals Lip Butter

2. MUA Lipstick in Shade 14, Bare

Leather

Nina7Nina4DSC_1404DSC_1375Nina3I have an obsession with jackets, especially leather jackets. This was a fun photo shoot I did with a photography class, I had a great time working with them and the pictures turn out to be amazing! Here I mixed my leather jacket with a statement necklace, the two pieces worked quite well together.