Saturday, October 31, 2015

Nivea Premium Body Serum

So it's the end of October and the humidity is pretty much gone, which means I'm turning back into an alligator and must find an effective moisturizer to keep my human skin until some humidity returns (hates it...but needs it...urgh). Comes Nivea Premium Body Serum which I stumbled upon completely by chance. There was only one kind in the 120mL purple bottle, so I picked it up along with Oshima Tsubaki Hair Water and ABS Tsubaki Abura 100% Camellia Oil (posting next).

Friday, October 30, 2015

Oshima Tsubaki Hair Water Part II

Three years after getting the freebie 20mL travel size of Oshima Tsubaki Hair Water, I finally bought the 180mL full size, among a couple of other things (Nivea Premium Body Serum and ABS Tsubaki Abura 100% Camellia Oil, will review next).


I have to say this hair water is definitely better than the competing (Shiseido) Tsubaki Tsubaki Water! I use them both the same way: just one single spray on wet hair right after the shower, towards the end-tips and not the roots or anywhere near the scalp, because I have an oily scalp.

This Oshima version is unscented, and it's much lighter and keeps my hair much less oily. Whereas the Shiseido Tsubaki version is heavily perfumed and gets my hair oily the very next morning. Enough said.

See my previous Oshima Tsubaki Hair Water post.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Dr. Hauschka Lipstick Novum

Beauty Habit had a sale not too long ago, and browsing through the website I stumbled upon Dr. Hauschka Lipstick Novum. The description of "translucent sheen of color" instantly piqued my curiosity, but I was loathed to pay the BH's discounted price of $16.80 (much less their $24 retail!). 

Fortunately (or not...), Amazon points enabled my lemmings and I picked up 3 colors, 09 Miraculous Rose, 10 Laid-Back Apricot, and 12 Exhilarating Berry. I skipped 04 Sand Dune because it looks too brown.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Soielys Perfect Oil

Using this 200mL bottle of Soielys Perfect Oil right now and loving it! I'm actually quite surprised to find this. It's from Kumano Yushi and I haven't seen any of their other cleansing oils around here.


This is a wet/dry cleansing oil that's a lot thicker than most oils I've used. And it's not thick as in greasy, the texture is more like Boscia Makeup-Breakup Cool Cleansing Oil. It's the kind of thickness that doesn't splash or spill and allows you to massage your skin without feeling like an oil-spill. It rinses well but doesn't leave my skin squeaky or taut. Smells really nice too, a light peach scent that's lovely and not cloying. Some peach fragrance can be sugary sweet. If I can't find anything new and interesting to try after finishing up this bottle (doubt it...), I will repurchase. 

There's a refill too, economical and less wasteful!

Friday, October 23, 2015

National Pottery Market, Ueno Park, Ueno, Tokyo (Picture heavy!)

Enormous post ahead! Clickable photos = zoom.

On one fine September Saturday at the end of Silver Week, hubby and I decided to go see the Monet Exhibition at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum right by Ueno Park

There was also a Gundam-related exhibition there at Ueno Park, although not the same Gundam Exhibition at the Roppongi Mori Tower. This one focuses specifically on the mechanical designs (character design for robots) of Okawara Kunio. Having been all Gundam-ed out the night before, we passed ^.^

And because it was the end of Silver Week, the whole area was pretty much packed in all directions.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Art of Gundam Exhibition (Picture heavy!), Roppongi, Tokyo

So...I suspect this post might be boring if you're not a Gundam fan. Hubby and I aren't fans either, but we heard great things about this Art of Gundam Exhibition at the Mori Art Museum on the 53rd floor of the Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, and having free tickets helped. And so we went to see it on a Friday night towards the end of Silver Week.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Organic Rose Skin Conditioner

Organic Rose is a sub-brand from Meishoku (see official website), and I've been curious about it for a while now. So when I ran out of toner, Clarins Toning Lotion with Camomile, I picked up this 200mL bottle of Skin Conditioner as replacement.

These days I'm using toner as they're intended, I soak a face towel (quit using cotton pads a couple of years ago) and wipe my face with it. So when I saw this toner I made sure it was runny watery and not viscous like most other Japanese toners, which they call lotion. The Organic Rose line does have Moisture Lotion indeed, and although it looks watery I think it is somewhat viscous, so I skipped it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Afternoon Tea at the Peak Lounge, Park Hyatt Tokyo

A few weekends ago at the start of Silver Week, hubby and I had afternoon tea with his colleague and her husband at The Peak Lounge on the 41st floor of Park Hyatt Tokyo. If you think the name sounds familiar, it's because this hotel was featured prominently in Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation. The tea was such a fantastic experience that we decided that night there would be an Afternoon Tea Club for his office, as in we all will go out to tea one weekend a month (this coming weekend will be at the Mandarin Oriental!). 

We didn't know what we were in for, other than the fact that we would be on the 41st floor. And then the elevator door opens and we were transported to another world, complete with a mini bamboo grove! 

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Suqqu Eye Color Palette

Despite all the fuss with Suqqu, I've only indulged once with Blend Color Eye Shadow EX-21 紫水晶 (Murasakisuishou). Yes, that octet. You can't blame me now, can you?

That holiday season of 2014 also saw the release of the Eye Color Palette trios, which is basically the Blend Color quads minus the loathsome matte base and highlighter, and for a whole 2,000yen less too which is great news for me! There's still that sparkly top wash but whatever, I like the sparklies and I can make do with it. But out of the 3 choices available, 01 橙透石 (Toutouseki), 02 金紫石 (Kinshiseki), and 03 蒼瑠璃 (Aoruri), I'm only interested in 02 Kinshiseki. Even then, upon a closer look I realized all three colors from 02 Kinshiseki are muted versions of EX-21 Murasakisuishou, both colors from the upper left split-pan and the bottom color of the upper right split-pan. So that threw cold water on my lemmings :(
***Stock photo from Hankyu Online Shop JP.

And then May 2015 came along and Suqqu released 2 limited editions EX-01 紅掛空 (Benikakesora) and EX-02 夜彩空 (Yosaizora). These succeeded in reclaiming my attention but I was still going back and forth, because I'm really only getting 2 colors for Suqqu's [out-sized] price. Finally, with a little nudging from Citrine last month, I went for both palettes. Being limited editions, they have mostly sold out on Rakuten JP and I don't want any regrets. I was going to procrastinate on reviewing them, but then I've been using them two weeks and am ready to move on with the next rotation, so here goes.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Excel Sleek Cheek

These Excel Sleek Cheeks were cart-fillers when I bought the BB Powder UV (by the way, I recommended this powder to my friend J. and she loves it!). There are 4 colors available, SC01 Cherry, SC02 Peach, SC03 Strawberry, and SC04 Apricot. I picked SC01 Cherry and SC04 Apricot, because the Peach doesn't look distinctive enough and the Strawberry looks too pink.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Tokyo Eats - Roppongi area

When hubby and I were living in Japan last, we were in Yokohama, and Tokyo was a bit of hike for us, a 1hr+ train ride with transfers, depends on destination. Needless to say we felt like outsiders the entire time and we sort of were (still are...). Whenever we went to Tokyo to hangout, dine out, or to be with friends, there was always that train ride back to dread (drunk salarymen, anyone?) and the last train to watch out for (packed-sardines with drunk salarymen, anyone?).

Now that we actually live in the heart of Tokyo, the game changed drastically. We go out so often now I'm running a few thousand photos behind, which means the back log for this blog is hitting a growth spurt and I'm marathoning to keep up. That's to say I'm going to follow my Taipei model and do group food reviews by the areas I frequent most, just to keep things simple and save time.

The first area that's racking up photos is Roppongi. We used to loath this area. Being an expat haunt, Roppongi had a bad rep, you see. Ten years ago when I was still in business school, a frat-boy classmate bragged about spending his summers in luxury high-rises, interning for Goldman Sachs in Roppongi, and this was Business Ethics class, mind you (proving Goldman Sachs' pervasive tone-deaf problem, from executives to interns). Five years ago when we were in Yokohama, hubby went to several school and work events in Roppongi and always came home sick and disgusted, having met some world-class a-holes, some of whom are diplomats (oh, the irony...). So earlier this year when an offer came in to work in Roppongi, our response was, "If and only if we don't have to live there."

Thankfully, it seems Roppongi has changed a bit and it doesn't feel too sleazy. Sure, there still are sketchy parts of town we avoid, and we're not nightclubbing, party folks anyway, so we're making do OK living a few train stops away. With hubby working in Roppongi, I go there at least twice a week to have lunch with him and then wander around for errands, etc. So that list of unsorted photos just grows and grows and grows.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Lunasol Geminate Eyes Part II

Now I totally see why these Lunasol Geminate Eyes were so damn popular. One look at the 01CE (Cat's Eyes) and I went right back for this 05RB (Ruby) even though all the online photos of hot pink and fuchsia made me want to run away screaming. Don't get me wrong, I do like hot pink and fuchsia, just not on my lids. I think those colors are better on my lips.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Lunasol Aurorized Eyes Part II

After the successes of 03 Gentle Variation and 05 Contrast Variation, I went back for more of these lovely Lunasol Aurorized Eyes in 02 Light Variation and 04 Soft Variation

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

SK-II Cellumination Deep Surge EX

Been using this 15g deluxe trial jar of SK-II Cellumination Deep Surge EX for the past 3 weeks. It's from the Facial Treatment Essence Rochas Bottle x Mask Coffret via Isetan, which I bought, umm, two years ago... Better late than never, I guess -.-"

Despite my frequent home moves, I sealed up this jar as usual and stored it really carefully, and was pleasantly surprised when I opened this up to find it fresh as new, with no signs of degradation. Wow!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Lunasol Vivid Clear Eyes Part II

Yes, I went back for more Lunasol Vivid Clear Eyes ^.^ This time, I picked up the EX02 Colorful Collection and the 03 Orange Collection from the permanent line. I figured since I like this range so much, I'd be kicking myself when it becomes unavailable (or pay a gigantic markup, but who wants that?). So it's better that I get them now before they're gone for good.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Allie Extra UV Protector Perfect Alpha S 50+ PA++++

Here's a two-years-late review for Allie Extra UV Protector Perfect Alpha S 50+ PA++++. I've been using this new formulation since 2013 when it came out, and this is my nth bottle as I've lost count how many I used up since then. The new formula was to adhere to the new Japanese sun protection ratings enacted at the start of that year.

Allie Extra UV Protector Perfect Alpha S in 2015 packaging.

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