Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Ettusais Lip Essence Stick Color SPF18 PA++

Around November I saw this Ettusais Lip Essence Stick Color Tinted Red SPF18 PA++ featured on Cosme. Since I love DHC Medicated Lip Cream, I was curious to know how this Ettusais version would compare. So I picked up two LE release with Winnie the Pooh on the packaging and an 85mL refill pouch of Skin Version Up Essence, which I'll review later.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto, Kyoto

During our in-room breakfast at Seikoro Ryokan, C., A., hubby, and I'd discussed our Kyoto Day 1 to-see list. We all agreed to only focus on just two sites for the day and try for a third if time permits. Yes, we're a bunch of underachiever tourists, but there was much more to that.

C. and A. had already spent a whole week by themselves in Kyoto before meeting up with us at the ryokan on Friday. During that time, they'd learned Kyoto had quite a different pace than Tokyo. For example, hubby and I noticed as soon as we arrived into Kyoto that trains and buses there didn't run as frequently as those in Tokyo, which meant longer transit time. Places also close earlier in Kyoto, some as early as 4pm! We had to be realistic and strategic with our time, hitting sites that are closer together, skipping lunch and just snack along the way, things like that. It was for this very reason that we picked Seikoro Ryokan to begin with, for its convenient location.


Anyway, the first destination of the day was Fushimi Inari Taisha, the iconic, picturesque shrine with thousands of red torii gates. It would be a 4km (2.48 miles, ~2hrs. walk) one-way up and then down the mountain, so it was best to go in the morning after breakfast before it got bloody hot, which it did =.="

Sunday, January 29, 2017

DHC Medicated Lip Cream

A staple product you'll see in every Japanese drugstore is this DHC Medicated Lip Cream, so popular every year they'll make LE packaging, thankfully for the same price. These 1.5g tubes retail for 700yen plus tax each on DHC's official Japanese online shop, but most drugstores offer it for less, around 4-500yen plus tax. Via the DHC USA online shop, they now retail for $9.50, a significant jump from $8 when I last checked! I'd never pay either prices, so I'm glad to have stocked up before going home. 

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Tokyo Eats - In the neighborhood Part V

The last of the neighborhood food photos, though not the last of the Tokyo Eats series as I'm still sorting through my photos.

Check out this beauty I spotted in a tunnel in my old neighborhood. The left wing tip had a small tear :(


Kinkatsu right outside of Kamiyacho Station serves up tantan men (aka dandan noodles) and other, erhhh, Japan-ized Taiwanese noodle soups. We walk by this place all the time but it was always crowded so we never went in. Then one night when we were bored with everything else and the place seemed vacant enough, we tried their tantan men. Really good, but holy hell it was salty. I thought I already eat too much salt (and I do!) but these noodles tasted like a block of salt! We never went back.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Make Up For Ever Artist Rouge Creme

Here's the 1.4g/0.04oz. of Make Up For Ever Artist Rouge Creme in C211 I got from Sephora's End-of-Week Treats promotion, which includes the 1g/0.035oz. Sephora Rouge Brilliance Rouge Shine in N14 Love Spell reviewed the day before.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Seikoro Ryokan, Kyoto, Kyoto, Part III

This last installment of Seikoro Ryokan is just for all the food ^.^ Two complete kaiseki meals and breakfasts are featured, because we'd spent two nights there. All the meals were served in-room.

After the kimono trying and photographing session, we were all starving and looking forward to dinner. This was when we got ourselves another cultural lesson, and one that's perhaps a bit more jarring than learning about the junihitoe. Earlier in the later afternoon, hubby and I'd arrived to Seikoro before C. and A. did. The table was still empty then, so we just sat down wherever we saw fit. I was in hubby's seat, and he was in mine. Apparently that was a no-no, and to be honest, we knew but didn't think they'd make a big deal out of it. Well, we were wrong.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Sephora Rouge Brilliance Rouge Shine

During the holidays, Sephora ran an End-of-Week Treats promotion. Among the goodies are two lipstick minis: 1.4g/0.04oz. of Make Up For Ever Artist Rouge Creme in C211 (will review next) and 1g/0.035oz. of Sephora Rouge Brilliance Rouge Shine in N14 Love Spell

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Seikoro Ryokan, Kyoto, Kyoto, Part II

With just one hour before dinner was served, two Seikoro Ryokan staff ushered me, hubby, C., and A. upstairs for the kimono trying and photographing session. I'd no idea we'd get to try on the Karaginu Mo aka junihitoe, the twelve-layer robes the court ladies once wore. Wow!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Suqqu Creamy Glow Lipstick Moist

Update Monday, January 23, 2017.

Had a chance to take some comparison photos over the weekend, and here's Suqqu Creamy Glow Lipstick Moist 13 茜薔薇 (Akanebara) versus Coffret D'Or Premium Stay Rouge RD-220 and WN-74

13 茜薔薇 (Akanebara) is more of a raspberry against a RD-220 that leans red and a WN-74 that leans violet. Love all three ^.^

-------------------------------------------------
Original post Tuesday, January 17, 2017.

Between Suqqu Creamy Glow and Creamy Glow Lipstick Moist, I'm squarely in the latter camp. That isn't to say I don't like the Creamy Glows, I just tend to reach for sheerer lip colors. Either way, I'm glad they're both within reach for me through the UK.

Over the holidays, I picked up two Creamy Glow Moists to try, 13 茜薔薇 (Akanebara) from the permanent lineup and EX-19 艳茜 (Tsuyaakane) aka Crimson Red, a UK exclusive from the winter 2015 releases.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Seikoro Ryokan, Kyoto, Kyoto

One week after our overnight stay at Katsuragi no Sato and subsequent afternoon at Matsumoto Castle, hubby and I met up C. and A. again at Seikoro Ryokan in Kyoto City, Kyoto.

Two months prior, we had combed through out little book on onsen ryokans, hoping to find one in Kyoto on the same quality level as Iwanoyu and Katsuragi no Sato. The book had served us so well and we'd loved the two places we found. Crazy enough, of all the hundreds of ryokans in Kyoto, none made the cut in the book, probably because their onsens weren't natural hot spring water, an important criteria. Ack, what to do?!

The small side street where Seikoro is situated. Some of the houses there were really traditional and old-looking.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Octo Medicated Shampoo and Rinse

The last time I hung out with my friend A. at Tokyo Station, we went inside the Kitte Building to window shop. While browsing, I spotted an interesting looking pair of shampoo and conditioner. As I was about to buy them, A. stopped me and recommended a drugstore brand instead, Octo Medicated Shampoo and Rinse.

A. said a family friend who does marketing research for some cosmetic company recommended these to her, and upon trying she loved how light and soft they made her hair. Even better was since using them, she only needed to shampoo every other day. So I went home and looked them up, and wow, they're super affordable indeed, each 320mL bottle cost all of 534yen plus tax! So I bought a pair and brought them home with me to try.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Afternoon Tea at The Lounge, Aman Tokyo, Part II

Back in July, our Tokyo afternoon tea club was taken breathless with the space and the atmosphere at The Lounge on the 33rd floor of the Aman Hotel Tokyo. So despite the chocolate overload in the afternoon tea service, we voted to come back for a second time in mid September for a last hoorah, just one more tea session before we all part ways and return home after a year in the capital of Japan. We figured it's been two months and their menu has probably changed, so it won't be the same death by chocolate as with the July session.


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