Aug 18, 2012

Travel Beauty Tips

Keeping yourself pretty during traveling is not an easy job. Here are some of the stuff I practice when I go traveling. I learned through mistakes and experiences, and I hope they will help you too...

  1. Painting your nails
    Having your nails manicure not only look pretty. The nail polish actually helps to keep your nails strong. There are many times you have to carry your bags around and your nails are at risk of being chipped off. The extra layers of nail polish will help prevent such mishaps.
  2. Vaseline is your saviour!
    The 100ml limit of liquid can be a pain in the ass for beauty junkies. Imagine you have to pack your moisturizer, hand cream, lip balm, cuticle gel, etc. into your hand carry. This problem can be solved with one product.... Vaseline. And it's not considered as liquid.
  3. Bad hair day solution for chic girls
    Bad hair day tends to appear more often when traveling. There are many solutions to it, but not all is practical when you're on the go. Hat takes up too much space in the luggage. Cap is too boyish. Scarf takes too much time to fix. The best solution for bad hair day for chic girls is.... HAIRBAND! Despite the bad hair, you can even be Blair Warldof.
  4. Water
    Our skin gets dehydrated faster when we are travelling around. Drinking a lot of water seems to be the most effective way to replenish your hydration, but it can be impractical to look for toilet after that. Prepare yourself with plenty of moisture wipe. When your skin feels dry, wipe it with the moisture wipe to keep your moisture level balanced. Try H2O spray too. I particularly love the Evian one. It comes in different sizes and I always get myself the small size so that I can carry it around easily.
  5. Sheet mask
    Remember to pack some sheet masks along with you. After long ride on the plane, your skin can be exhausted. However, if you're going on a long trip, it might be more economical to take along the jar mask as you can apply over and over again. 

These are a few tips I can remember on top of my head. I will add on when I can think of more. Meanwhile, what are your travel beauty tips? Do share with me so I can make use of it too. 

Aug 3, 2012

Shanghai Haul and Tips on Shopping in China

I just came back from Shanghai. Initially, I didn't want to buy anything (you know what they say about China products) but I ended up with a huge haul.

As usual, at the end of my travelogue, I will have a giveaway on this blog. So you guys can start guessing what I will giveaway from the list of stuff I bought below.

But before that, here are some tips on shopping in China:

  1. If you're buying from shopping malls or retails, they don't provide plastic bags or paper bags. Remember to bring your own or they'll charge you 1 yuan for it. That's 50 cents in our money!!! Some places charge more.
  2. If you're buying from shopping malls or retails, the procedure is normal. You get your stuff, bring it to the counter and pay. But if you're buying from stalls, especially places with a lot of tourists, it is more challenging. Always bargain.
  3. Remember to break your money into small change at the mall or retail shops before buying at stalls. Give them exact change or small change. There are places that will give you counterfeit money when they give you your change. Be very careful with that. Make sure you're familiar with all the notes.
  4. When you decided to buy something, make sure they pack in front of you. Some idiots will change the products to lower quality ones when you're not looking.
  5. To get cheaper bargains, give them poker face while you're shopping. Do not show that you're interested. 

Now... here's my entire haul...

I discovered Limi (sold only in Watson China) and got these stuff. Some belongs to Christine...

I've used some of the stuff and they're quite good. The price is quite affordable. Somewhat like Hada Labo price range. And the packaging is sooooooooooooo cute!!!!

I got the sea cleansing foam. It's so mild and so refreshing. I would recommend this to everyone, if you can find it, grab it.

I'm loving the Tea Tree Whisper Oil-control Cleansing Pads that I bought. Each cotton pad is soaked in tea tree liquid that feels like toner. I use this after cleansing and all my makeup remains were totally removed. Anyway, I will write review on each of the products on this blog soon.

These are eye masks in red apple and avocado. I haven't try it yet. 

And my beloved wine masks...

The packaging comes in the shape of a wine glass, which I thought really cute...

And lastly, the Peach Hydrating Cleanser. I read from their website, apparently, this is their best seller... If you read Chinese do check out their website for all the wonderful products. If you don't read Chinese, just go and enjoy the animation. They're just as cute as the packaging.

It's kinda sad that we don't have such good products in Malaysia. The next time I want to buy anything from Limi, I have to fly to China again. There are a lot of stuff I wish I had bought like the face sunblock, hydrating mud mask, rose water and many more... Well, it's too late to regret. So I "proposed" the boyfriend to bring the brand into Malaysia. After all his job is to bring investors from China into Malaysia. Therefore, I believe it can be done. The next time you find Limi in Malaysia, you'll know my contribution. Thank me later.

The weather in Shanghai is quite hot at the moment. So, I definitely need some SPF and got the Nivea one that comes with Express Hydration Body Gel (a gel type of moisturizer). 

While scouting at Watson, I spotted the Vidal Sassoon hair fix at the bargain corner for only 10 yuan. That's RM5!!!!! In Malaysia, it is selling at about RM50+ if I'm not mistaken. How could I miss that chance?

I tried the Nivea Express Hydration Body Gel and it's the best moisturizer I've ever tried!!! Since it is not available in Malaysia, I went to Watson the third night and got myself another bottle.

Meanwhile, I also stock up my Evian water mist spray. This is very useful during hot days. Unfortunately, not available in Malaysia too. However, the Pomegranate Mask by Watson is available in Watson Malaysia. This mask is really good. You should try it and you'll know.

Some feminine wipe by Lactacyd. Tried and tested.... Proven useful during travel. When panty liner is insufficient... if you know what I mean. 

These milk nail polish remover are awesome!!! Fortunate enough... they are available in Sasa. I bought them for RM5 each but Sasa is selling at RM7.90. It is the most effective nail polish remover I've ever tried. At the same time, it's mild and leaves your nail moisturized. Worth trying...

After travelling for days and having my skin exposed to the sun and dirt, I decided I need a good scrub. So I got myself the Rose Japanese Bath Aroma Bath Salt. I wasn't hopeful with this because it only cost 2 yuan per pack. That's RM1! But it turn out to be sooooo good! My skin felt silky smooth. Literally!!! If I ever see this again, I would buy all of it. No joke!

You may ask "what is this?". Well... this is a jade face massager. I know I blogged about how bad these face massager is before. But long long time ago, I saw a video of my beauty idol Queenie talked about this face massager and I wanted it. So I bought it. Now I'm using it to massage my neck instead of my face.

Silk scarves. I picked those that looks like Hermes. LOL!!! But my ultimate favorite is this sheer Chinese painting silk scarf...

The camera don't do justice for the scarf. Or maybe I just suck at taking photos. But trust me... It's very pretty!!!

And I also got some statement rings...

Of course when you go to China you have to get some tea. I love tea more than any drinks... more than alcohol! They say if you drink tea, you'll leave longer. Not that I want to live longer... But I just love the idea that it has antioxidant, so I wish I live younger instead.

This is Long Jing green tea. Green tea from Long Jing is the best quality. 

I think I love the blue porcelain jar more than the tea. But my grandma said it reminds her of the jar to put body ashes :S

My biggest splurge was this cicada tea set...

It is made of purple clay mined in Wuxi. They're designed by famous lady tea pot designer (can't remember her name). This Yixing teapot is made exclusively for the Purple Clay Teapot Museum and you can only buy it from there. Apparently they made 100 of this, so there are only 100 out there. I don't really care about how exclusive it is... I just love the design and the cicada on top of the lid.

During the hot days, I got myself this milk tea...

It tasted really nice when it's cold. But when it's not cold... yucks! I had to throw it.

French rose tea. Nothing special about this tea. You can get it anywhere. And they don't sell it at cheaper price in China anyway.

I also got a book about tea so that I can level up my tea knowledge. Teehee... I was contemplating of getting the famous Chinese literature book Dream of the Red Chamber, but in the end I choose this tea book. Kinda regret. But oh well.... I should have gotten both.

And I also got myself the famous Mao Tze Tong red book. If found during the communist era, I could be prosecuted (or persecuted?). But this one is just for fun. It's like one of those quotation book of famous people you can get in any book store.

These mini Chinese literature comics are really fun to read. Should have gotten more. But I really don't know some of the stories.

I also got a lot snacks. I love snacks! And who doesn't? But this one... this really cracks me up...

It's like one of those biscuit with quotes on it. The quotes are hilarious!!!

It's not hilarious per se. But the sentence on the biscuit is kinda meaningless and senseless so it leaves you wondering... what the fuck is that? Anyway, it tasted great. 

Mini oreos!!!

Hello Kitty strawberry biscuit!!!

They have really weird Lay's potato chips flavour. That's my brand by the way. My grandpa owns Lay's. LOLOLOLOLOL!!!! They have flavour like asam fish (wtf!), avocado, and all sorts of weird flavour that you never thought you'll see on potato chips. I tried the cucumber flavour and the Texas Grilled BBQ.

At first, they taste kinda weird. But after the 5th chips in your mouth, your tongue will get used the flavour and it just tasted like any other potato chips.

My favorite lychee gummy sweets from Wang Chai!!!

Bayberry (or waxberry) juice...

I was wonder what the hell is bayberry. I got curious, so I tried it. It tasted like rambutan juice!!! Someone should come up with rambutan juice because it's really refreshing and nice. 

Mulberry juice... I must say this is not my favorite. It has that artificial sweetness. I think another bottle will kill me with diabetes.

Ad my favorite drink is the Collagen drink which contains up to 1600mg of collagen in one bottle. You can get this is Watson.

And at the airport... I couldn't resist the DOM. It's only RM108 for 1 litre. If you buy it from non-duty free shop, it will cost you the same price but for only 700ml. 

All women should drink DOM. It keeps you energetic throughout the day. 

And some chocolates...

That's the end of my Shanghai haul. Can you guess from all the items above, what am I going to giveaway next? Definitely not the teapot. But I think you guys can guess it well.

Jul 2, 2012

How & Where to buy Yukata in Malaysia

Bon Odori is coming soon!!!!!!!

In Selangor:
Date: 14th July 2012
Venue: Matsushita Stadium, Shah Alam

In Penang:
Date: 21st July 2012
Venue: Esplanade

And this is the time of the year everyone is scouting for yukata. I did plenty of research before getting mine. So I thought I might as well share it here for everyone's convenience since buying a yukata can be a huge headache.

First: Choose your yukata color.
These are the normal colors - black, red, yellow, pink, purple, blue, white, green, brown (brown is mostly use by men only).

Then choose the motives (prints) on the yukata.

The usual motives are sakura, rose, dragonfly, butterfly, maple leaves, gold fish and recently there's flying bunny print which I think is soooooo cute!

After you're done selecting the color and the prints of your yukata, you have to select a matching obi. Obi is the belt for yukata. There are two types; one is the original obi that you have to tie them yourself...

Or you can choose to get the pre-tied obi that has velcro. All you need to do is to stick the ribbon on your back. These type of obi are pretty generic.

Lastly, you need to get yourself a geta (wooden sandal) and a pouch for accessories.

If you don't follow the steps above, it is quite easy to get carried away. Some people couldn't resist the cute geta and pouch and go on to purchase them before having a full set of yukata. And then they will find themselves trapped in the limited choices of yukata.

Now, where to get your yukata in Malaysia?

Very few shops in Malaysia sells yukata. You can get them from souvenir shops that sells traditional clothes, but they will cost a bomb. So I resort to buying online. You might not be able to try them, but they're a lot cheaper. Here are some of the online sellers that I found:

Oh Japan - They have large choices of yukata for you to choose from. However, it is quite pricey as they sell the yukata and obi separately.

Koori no ya - This is a Facebook shop. They also provide renting services. I bought my pink sakura from this person and it's only RM255 for the whole set (yukata + pre tied obi + geta). I'm really happy with her service. I got my yukata within 2 days after payment. And the seller is really prompt in replying your inquiries. I do recommend you to check out her Facebook page.

Valval Yukata & Kimono shop - This is also another Facebook shop. Their price is the cheapest (RM210 for one set of yukata). However, I think the site is dead. I asked the seller a few questions and sent her messages but I never got any reply from her/him.

Summer Shoppe - Also a Facebook shop. If you're looking for only the yukata piece, this is the cheapest place to get it. However, she doesn't sell whole set, so it can be a bit pricey if you're going to get the whole set.

And this is the yukata I've chosen....

And this is me in my friend's sister's yukata. We swapped yukata for the day...

Are you going to Bon Odori? Let me know if you are, maybe we can meet up. I'm going to the one in Penang, by the way...