Category Archives: Beauty

Summer Beauty Favorites

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It’s been a hot minute since the last time I posted a beauty favorites post. Or maybe it’s just been a hot minute since I post about anything at all. But I have made a deal to myself to blog more religiously and improve the quality of my content. I hope you guys stick around with me for more contents in the future!

This year summer is different than all the summers I have had in the past (I moved to a country with four seasons in 2011 so before that I didn’t really have summer). This year we have had so many hot days. Way more than 2016 as far as I can remember. In The Netherlands they always say that we only have about 2 weeks of ‘nice’ (nice is subjective, in here, it means warm) weather a year. But oh boy 2017 is the year of long Summer. I had to panic buy lots and lots of sleeveless tops, denim cutoffs, and linen everything. Which I returned about 95% of them because I came to realize that I hate summer dressing. But summer beauty is different. You get to be heavy handed with your bronzer and your face looks healthier than any other season. That’s how I feel anyway.

Speaking of being heavy handed with bronzer, the one that I have been using non stop is my NARS Laguna bronzer. I can’t say I have tried a lot of bronzers out there but Laguna takes the cake for me. The tone of the bronzer just emits warmth to my face with the slight shimmer in it. NARS Laguna on me don’t look too noticeable upon first application so I can build it up to my liking. Which is my preference when it comes to cheek products actually. I don’t need them to be too pigmented as long as they are buildable.

Waterproof mascara is arguably the most important thing that I stock up to prepare before summer. This year, I purchased Fairy Drops Scandal Queen waterproof mascara off of ASOS as my waterproof mascara of choice. Initially, I was slightly underwhelmed by the performance of this mascara. I am a lover of thick full lashes so I really like to wiggle the wand on the roots of my lashes to give them super full coat. Unfortunately this mascara didn’t deliver when I first used it. But once it’s opened for a little while, I can achieve my lash dream with this mascara. And the formula holds the curl until you have time to take it off. And you need a powerful waterproof eye makeup remover to do so. My favorite is this one.

For a good lip moisturizer that has spf in it, I have been using By Terry Baume de Rose lip balm. You might think I’m nuts for spending around €40 on a pot of lip balm, but I’d like to slip in a small bit of luxury in my day to day life sometime. And this one just do the trick. I’m so happy that this lip balm has spf 15 built in so I can avoid getting burn lips. Funny story, I didn’t know I was capable of getting burned (this was stupid I know) and so ignorant of the pain it brings until my holiday in Thailand that I missed a spot on my shoulder. After that I have made a promise to myself to better overdose on the sunscreen than getting burned.

When I was in Marrakesh in June, I purchased myself a small bottle of argan oil infused with gardenia in it. And so far my favorite way of using the oil is as an oil perfume. My mom used to buy the small pot of oil perfumes from The Body Shop when I was young, so using an oil perfume now makes me feel slightly nostalgic. The gardenia scent in it just so soft and feminine yet so memorable. The way I apply it usually by rubbing a small dot onto both my hands and my neck. Moisturizing + smelling good at the same time. Unfortunately I can’t tell you where to get this anywhere other than Marrakesh. Even then I don’t remember where exactly I bought it (somewhere in the beginning of anti atlas mountain). But you probably can try a perfume by Aerin.

And you might wonder, where is the favorite sunscreen, Ellya??? Oh well, I was just using up my Rituals one and I kind of hate it now that it’s so hot. It’s a bit too oily for the summer time. I do like the one I just bought from La Roche Posay but don’t feel comfortable saying it’s a favorite since I have had it in my possession for about a week. It’s this one if you’re curious.

So now that I have spilled all my favorites for the summer months, can I say that I can’t wait for fall to come?

Five Months Using Safety Razor

It has been about five months since I ordered my first safety razor. Prior to using this, I haven’t really stuck to one method of hair removal. I have tried the conventional disposable shaver, epilator, waxing strips, or just plucking one by one with a tweezer when I’m bored. Epilator was my favorite for a while due to the re-growth period. I can go a week without having to bear the pain of epilating my hair (although overtime the pain reduces significantly). But I have way too many in grown hair by doing this method and I don’t want that. I went back for a while to using disposable shaver. It didn’t last that long because I just feel I have to re buy it way too often because it gets dull quick. And I hate doing that. It costs so much money! I hate spending a lot of money at the supermarket for something that is not food.

So I looked into the safety razor territory. Initially, I was skeptical. Also feared I might cut myself very dramatically. And the initial amount of money spend is not just in the tenner category. After deliberating for a few months, I purchased it anyway. I ordered it off of a dutch website and it arrived pretty quickly. Along the razor, I also placed an order for a box of razor for future use. The one I picked from the website was the Merkur 23c one. I figured let’s just follow the most popular one. Now I realized that kind of attitude might not help me in every situation but this one turned out okay. I was kind of regretting not getting the butterfly opening (the one that opens up when you twist on the bottom) but I guess this one is fine too.

Now I’m a convert for always using safety razor as my method of hair removal. I can use this to remove pretty much all the hair I want to be gone. My boyfriend also steals the razor from time to time and he also enjoys using it very much. So far I haven’t cut myself *knock on woods*. But my boyfriend did bleed a little bit whenever he uses the safety razor due to the bumpy texture of his skin on his jawline. But once he did use the disposable one and he cut himself even worse. So I guess using this is still a winner even for him.

I wished I was brave to travel with this but I just couldn’t do that. Especially through Amsterdam Schiphol because they are very strict. I swear they can even smell the razor blade. Also I haven’t found a place to buy razor blades in store except Aesop. I ended up having to splurge in Kuala Lumpur for a very bougie razor blades because I did pack the safety razor with me but not the blade. So anyone with tips and trick on how to travel with safety razor along with razor blade is very much welcome.

Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm

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Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm

Hand balm is an appropriate name to call this product. It acts like a hand cream but more. To me the hydration that this product injects to my hands excels my previous hand cream from The Body Shop. Which is really something I need when the weather is cold and windy. It took me a while to be diligent to apply hand cream/balm on my hands but I am so glad I stick to it. Not just out of necessity but in terms of how my fingers are looking right now. They’re not as creepy as they were!

Two of my favorite things about this product are one, the amount of hydration it gives without being greasy (or without having to use so much product, because this shiz ain’t cheap). And two is the smell! It’s so fresh and zesty. Aromatique is definitely how I would describe this hand balm! A long long time ago, I used to use Weleda Skin Food and the smell of this hand balm is quite similar to that. You could probably get away with using Weleda Skin Food as a hand balm too but that thing is thick as hell! And also it’s very greasy in comparison to the Aesop one.

Now, 23 euros for a 75 ml hand balm is not cheap. But with the amount of product that you need per application, I think you can stretch the life of this product for more than 6 months. It’s a definite love from me and I think I will stick to this for a long time.

New In: SK-II Skin Treatment Essence

For the past few years, my mom has been upping her skincare game. She wasn’t slacking before but since a year or two ago she has grown curious for the new products on the market. Or the cult favorite that she hasn’t tried. In November 2016, she scored herself a deal for the SK-II Skin Treatment Essence and ever since using the essence she has noticed good results. So whenever she told me about her experience using the essence, I told her I’m also curious on testing it out myself. And somehow, she asked a friend of mine who was visiting Indonesia to bring her bottle to give to me. And now I have a massive bottle of SK-II Skin Treatment Essence to try out. How exciting! Thanks mom!

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First impression:

The first time I poured the liquid out of the bottle, I enjoyed the smell. But a few seconds later, the smell changed into something not so pleasant. I even asked her if it’s actually smell like feet after a few seconds or did the bottle go bad during transport. But she said, it does smell the same for her and she said it shouldn’t expire until 2019. I was bothered by it in the beginning, but not anymore.

For the first few uses, I poured the essence straight to my palms and just tap the essence onto my clean skin. But now, I use cotton rounds to swipe the essence across my face. I’m not sure which one I prefer yet since using cotton rounds leads to so much waste but I hate getting my palms sticky. So I will still test out the product for the foreseeable future and report back on my blog. But look at that bottle though!