Tag Archives: Foundation

Skincare Tip – Daily Skincare Essentials (Part III)

Hi all, I’m back after a long hiatus. Been really busy at work so here I am sharing with you the 3rd instalment of my daily skincare essentials. This time, its on Moisturizing.

Whether you are living in tropical country like Singapore, or in a temperate country with four seasons, Moisturizing remains an important part of our basic 3-step skincare regime. Each day, our skin, being the largest organ, is exposed to many different contaminants and impurities. Our health constitution from lifestyle and daily stresses adds on to the our skincare condition. So how do we choose our moisturizer?

From my personal experience, selection of moisturizer depends on:

1) Your skin condition – is it normal, combination, oily or dry. Normal skin usually would not have problems with over or under production of natural facial oils in tropical and humid country like in Singapore. However, light moisturizer that helps to retain good skin health remains essential. Oily skin is sometimes what I experience when my hormones are running amok or when I am under severe stress. It felt like an oil field that has no tap on it. 😀 Dry skin folks will know that good moisturizers go a long way. Takes away the dry and painful flakes, and prevents further infections on the skin.

2) The environment that you live and work in – the environment introduces external stresses to our skin, so its important that we use products that work on our skin yet at the same time protects our skin from external stresses. Warm weather increase perspiration, opens our pores but also creates adhesive for dirt and grime to stick on our face and clog our pores. Cold weather dries up the surface of our skin, and forcing more oil to the surface to maintain skin health.

So what do I use to protect my facial skin?

I have combination normal-oily skin, and my skin’s inner layers tend to be oily while the surface is dry. Hence I tend to choose moisturizers that are hydrating yet seals in moisture. The Label Young’s Shocking Mist is a decent product that I’ve been using in the day where I need to put on make up before going to work. The texture of the product seals in moisture for about 4 hours yet at the same time allow the skin to breathe and the perspiration to surface. It holds my bareMinerals Ready Foundation rather well (pseudo primer) and does not clog my pores. Another product that I use is the Albion’s Exage Moist Crystal Milk II and Herbal Oil Gold together with the Albion’s Skin Conditioner to hydrate my skin, depending on my skin condition that day.

As I work in air-conditioned office, my skin will be dry by the time I reach afternoon. This will call for additional step after I cleanse my face at night. Typically I will either apply sheet mask once a week (I use My Beauty Diary series) for more intense hydration, or to apply Neal’s Yard Remedies’ Rehydrating Rose Facial Oil and seal with NYR’s Comfrey and Yarrow Moisturizer at night.

I have subscribed to a website that gave tips on how to treat acne skin recently to learn more from those who had experienced horrible acne outbreaks. Those of you with acne problem may also want to check this site out: The Love Vitamin. Here, she’s recommended to use jojoba oil as moisturizer because it has similar texture as our facial oil, and would help to “tell” our skin not to produce anymore oil. Of course, she has many other tips to share so do check it out and learn from her amazing journey!

Let me know what has been working for you!

bareMinerals READY SPF 20 Mineral Foundation

Bareminerals Ready FoundationI have been using bareMinerals READY SPF 20 Mineral Foundation for a while now, and I thought its time I do a review on this amazing foundation. Why did I say its amazing? Its true it is mineral and many other foundations which are mineral based – but fact is, this is the only powder foundation that I’ve used so far that doesn’t give me outbreaks!

About the Product

Those of you out there who are cult followers of the bareMinerals product ranges will know that the popularity for this product spread like wild fire when its founder, Leslie, started selling its loose powder foundation on QVC in USA. The swirl-tap-buff sure got many ladies onboard and its now one of the go-to foundations for those who have problem skin. From the bareMinerals website, the active ingredients in this foundation are: Titanium Dioxide 11%, Zinc Oxide 18%. Inactive Ingredients: Boron Nitride, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Magnesium Silicate, Silica, Nylon-12, Humic Acids, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Jojoba Esters, Corallina Officinalis Extract, Lecithin, Betaine, Algae Extract. May Contain: Mica, Bismuth Oxychloride, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides. This foundation also claims to increase hydration by 108% with decent coverage (important point to note for those of you who have reddish patches on your skin like me!)

Using the Product

I have used this product with the bareMinerals brush as well as other flatheaded brushes. The coverage is good if you have some reddish patches or light freckles on your skin. For those with large acne, you can still use this product, but the bumps may be amplified to show the unevenness of the skin. Moles or dark patches that show up prominently on your skin may not be covered that well so you can say that light flaws can be covered, but if you have visible flaws such as large open pores, suggest to use a primer and concealer before using this foundation. This foundation can be layered on (do use flat headed brushes, or if you are a Sigma brush fan, use a 3DHD Precision brush would do the job just fine to create a nice professional finish). I wore this foundation in the humid Singapore weather and it lasted me almost 6 to 8 hours (note: not perspiring okie). My skin did not feel as drying after removing the foundation too. I guess I can attest to the 108% more hydration. Also, I noticed that when I have small pimples, using this foundation actually help to dry them up! (Gosh!). I am not sure if its gotta do with the ingredients in this foundation but hey, it doesn’t clog and helps with drying up small pimples – thumbs up!

Where to Buy this Product

I like to stock this up when I am overseas or when I have friends travelling to USA (its a lot cheaper there). In Singapore, you can purchase it from Sephora and its always good to stock up when its your birthday month (those of you with Sephora’s white card or black card) so that you get some discounts. Otherwise, there are plenty of online shops that ships for free worldwide so do google on!

Are you using this product too? Do share with me your experience!

Iope – BB Air Cushion XP SPF50+/PA+++ with Refill

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This changed my mind about BB creams

I can’t believe it myself but this little pot of BB Cushion changed my mind about using BB Cream for acne prone and clogging pores like mine.

This product is one of my steals from my shopping trip in MyeongDong, Seoul, South Korea – from one from one of Korea’s cosmetic conglomerate “Amore Pacific”. Amore Pacific has created many cosmetic lines under it, with Laneige, Innisfree, Etude House, etc being some of its more popular brands. IOPE (pronouced as “ah-ee-oh-pay”) belongs to the mid to high range brands, and is sold in Aritaum (Amore Pacific outlet that carries only selected Amore Pacific products which are around mid to high range) and Watsons in Korea.

It began with my colleagues asking me to help them purchase a few Korean skin care and cosmetics. This item was on the order list because it was part of product placement in the korean drama, You Who Came From The Stars (来自星星的你). The character, ChunSongYi had used this BB Air Cushion in one of the scenes. Since this drama was heavily followed by viewers, this item was selling like hotcakes in Korea – so much so the shops had to control the quantity each customer can purchase with a single credit card!

What is BB Air Cushion?
Unlike conventional packaging for BB and CC creams, BB Air Cushion means it comes in a thick compact that carries cartridges of product which are replaceable. Within each cartridge, you will find a sponge that will help to “soak” up the BB “lotions” (I think its more like BB lotions than creams coz they tend to be a lot less thick). Each compact or refill pack will come with a purpose-made puff that you should use to “pat” or “tap” onto the BB lotion soaked sponge so that you can pick up just enough BB lotion to apply by patting lightly on your face. As the BB lotion is thin, you may layer on the product if you need more coverage.  There are currently a lot of Korean Cosmetics companies who are selling BB Cushions, but I have read it somewhere, that Amore Pacific is the first company that developed BB Air Cushion and this was, accordingly, followed by other cosmetic manufacturers.

Review of Product
I did not experience any breakout since the day I started using this product. It last about 4 to 6 hours on my face if I do not spend 15 mins walking out of my office under the hot sun to grab my lunch. The layering is good and I think the sunscreen is a big plus if you live in hot and sunny places in asia. In terms of camouflaging pores, I think it has decent pore coverage (note: do not work for super large pores or scars, okie – only up to visible open pores)  after you have applied it for a while – it made my skin looked good (even when I had an awful night of poor sleep quality) and healthy. I usually apply without primers.

Points to Note
One has to take note that some cosmetic sales counters will advise that their product requires you to layer on loose powder after applying their BB cushion. However, with IOPE, the sales outlets told me that I do not need to apply loose powder at all. I have tried this product in Korea and before I return to humid Singapore. It does hold better in Korea but its durability seems to also work very well in Singapore – if you do not have to walk under the hot sun to grab your lunch in the afternoon.  What I like very much is that it has SPF50+/PA+++. I feel my skin turning fairer after using the BB Air Cushion XP for a month! 😀
Shade wise, one must realise that the shade for IOPE BB Air Cushion XP is not the same with other BB Air Cushion, even if the brands belong to the same Amore Pacific family. For example, N21 for Laneige BB Cushion suits me better than N21 for IOPE BB Air Cushion XP (whiter than Laneige). I had to use N23 for IOPE to get a more natural look on my face.

In a nutshell, either you test the shade at your nearby counters or purchase it cheap online or overseas to test before jumping in to stock up!

Where to Purchase IOPE BB Air Cushion XP
There aren’t that many IOPE counters in the world, aside from those in USA and in Korea. Amore Pacific did not have any counters in Singapore (Amore Pacific, please bring it to Singapore!) or Malaysia, so the only way is to buy online.  Couple of ways to purchase IOPE BB Air Cushion XP:
1) Qoo10 – search for “IOPE” should land you a list of vendors that carries the product. Some of them are having good discounts for the product (less than S$40 per box with a refill cartridge).
2) Google “koreandepart” – you might be able to find stocks from them
3) Ask a friend who is going to Seoul, MyeongDong to grab it for you at local rates. If he/she is able to obtain VAT refund, even better!

I hope the information is useful to you. Please share with me what you think of this product if you have tried it! 🙂

Laura Mercier – Foundation Primer & Tinted Moisturizer (Oil Free)

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Those of you out there who have been shopping in Sephora will know that the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer is the best selling primer. For a lighter version of liquid foundation, the tinted moisturizer will be recommended. I have combination skin so on days where my skin is not too inflamed, I will use the tinted moisturizer coz it does not provide a lot of coverage.

Foundation Primer
I have used the primer for a while. This is the oil free version so it feels fresh and light on the skin. The primer is in creamy white colour and one may on first instance thought they are putting cream on their faces. Fear not! For troubled skin like mine, I dont even get outbreaks. So this is a plus!!

My assessment of the product is this:
1. Very good foundation holding power! whether you are using liquid foundation like tinted moisturizers, just foundation, powder foundation or like me, using pure mineral foundation; you will love how well this foundation holds them on your face and lasts for hours!
2. Cream like texture makes it easy to apply with hand or with a sponge. Glides on like silk!
3. Comes in long tubes so gotta make sure you had closed well. Do not throw it into your bag without first putting into your makeup pouch. The cap may come of when it knocks against other items in your handbag.

Tinted Moisturizer SPF20 (Oil Free)
I thought I could use hand to apply this and that will be all. However when I do that, I realise that my skin is cakey and looks oily or shiny.

I consulted one of the Sephora staff and her advise was : use a sponge to spread or apply the tinted moisturizer in dabbing movement. Press the sponge lightly on the skin with two fingers behind the spongeand turn your wrist to roll the sponge off the point you first placed on your face, as if you are dabbing off excess on your face. Indeed the look is more natural as if I am not wearing anything on my face! This must be followed by either translucent loose powder? Or in my case, Laura Mercier Smooth Focus Pressed Setting Powder which is matt and translucent. This will turn the tinted moisturizer to look powdery and soft.

My assessment:
1. Tinted moisturizer is indeed light as promised. Not too thick so its a good option for those with minimal blemishes on the face. Gives a natural look!
2. It comes on long tubes too so remember to put it in you makeup purse with your sponge before throwing into your bag.

If you are always on the run, I would recommend powder foundation instead of liquid foundation. Liquid foundations such as tinted moisturizers can be difficult to apply for beginners plus you need to use a sponge. So busy bees out there, stick to powder unless you have oily skin. Else these two products from Laura Mercier are great for a natural look!