Saturday, December 31, 2016

Afternoon Tea at The Lounge, Aman Tokyo

Happy New Year!

Meanwhile, I'm still catching up with photos. For July, our afternoon tea club tried the tea service at The Lounge on the 33rd floor of the Aman Hotel Tokyo, in Otemachi, north of Tokyo Station and west of Nihonbashi.

I have to say, the building may seem unremarkable from the outside, but inside it was rather breathtaking in terms of design and decor. Our group of six were mesmerized the moment we stepped inside The Lounge and I have a boat load of photos to prove it ^.^ The whole place is vast and airy and well-lit. In super dense Tokyo, there's nothing more luxurious than space itself. Just look at that ceiling!

Thursday, December 22, 2016

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Eye Cream

In my quest for all things eye treatment-related, I also bought two skincare travel kits from Belif and Ole Henriksen from Sephora. For that purchase, I received a nice freebie: ten 1mL/0.034fl oz. packets of IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Eye Cream. That's 10mL/0.338fl oz. in total folks, about 2/3 of the 15mL/0.5fl oz. full size retailing for $48! ^.^

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Kiehl's Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Eye Cream

Coming home from Tokyo, I realized I'd ran out of eye creams. So I made do with my stash of random samples until Black Friday/Cyber Monday, which was an opportunity for me to stock up and to try out new brands.

One of those new brands is Kiehl's, which is not new but is new to me ^.^ I've heard a lot about the brand but have never tried before. Picking up a small jar of Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado (will get to later), I got some generous GWP to go with it, among which I chose this 3mL/0.1fl oz tube of Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Eye Cream to use first because I needed a richer eye treatment for nighttime.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pad

I'd mentioned in my First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream post that I'd picked up a Peace, Joy & FAB Kit.

Well, here it is, and it includes a gigantic 170g/6oz. jar of Ultra Repair Cream which will probably take years for me to finish, a 50mL/1.7fl oz. jar of Ultra Repair Hydra-Firm Sleeping Cream, a 59mL/2fl oz. spray bottle of Vitamin Hydrating Mist which I'm looking forward to try, 56.7g/2oz. tube of Face Cleanser which hubby and I are enjoying right now, having finished the Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser, and 28 pads jar of Facial Radiance Pad, which I've been using the past few weeks.

Monday, December 19, 2016

The Body Shop Moisture White Shiso Make-up Cleansing Oil

Since coming home, I've been using this 125mL/4.2fl oz. bottle of Body Shop Moisture White Shiso Make-up Cleansing Oil. It's also discontinued--I don't see it on The Body Shop USA's website anymore, which means this review is useless. Ha.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Coffret D'Or Gloss Coat Stick

These Coffret D'Or Gloss Coat Stick in PK-18 and PK-19 were cart fillers. I actually got them a while back but have been way, way, way behind on photos.

Loved the slim and round metal packaging. They felt weighty but are portable at the same time. Given the name, I was hoping for these to be more like lip essence or balm, something I could layer under or top my lipstick with. They were pretty much clear and very sparkly, so this use made sense to me. 

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Tokyo Eats - Roppongi area Part V

Many more photos build-up and here we are at installment #5 of Tokyo Eats - Roppongi Area.

Back in late June, the Midtown building had a fun exhibition on daruma art.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen, Suzaka, Nagano, Part IV

Last of the Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen saga. Phew. Breakfast was served from 7:30-9am, and checkout time was 12pm. We expected another gigantic meal and opted for 9am, as late as possible being still full from dinner the night before.

We both breathed a collective relief when we saw our breakfast, thinking, wow, okay, we can definitely do this!

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen, Suzaka, Nagano, Part III

Just as we left Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen's private bath 5, it was time for dinner. Dinner was served anytime between 6-7:30, but it'd be a long course dinner that would leave us stuffed to our ears. So we showed up at 6, just so we could take our time and can still visit the baths afterwards.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen, Suzaka, Nagano, Part II

More on Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen, or more specifically, their 5 private baths. Not wanting to lose daylight, hubby and I did a walk-through and took pictures, with plans to come back later and take our time to soak and relax.

Apparently everyone else had the same idea (ha!), so we ended up hanging out and chilling while waiting for the private baths to open up. I suppose this is the reason the ryokan has so many resting spots and small libraries.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Iwanoyu at Seni Onsen, Suzaka, Nagano

Hubby and I dated for years before we got engaged. When we did, we spent our engagement on opposite sides of the planet. He was finishing up his master's, and I was a lost JET in the Japanese inaka. We signed our marriage certificate on his graduation day, had a backyard bbq with just our immediate families, and called it a day. No wedding. No honeymoon. No regrets. We've been traveling together everywhere since.

This past May was our 10 years wedding anniversary, and we finally decided we would do something special. We both love onsens and ryokans, and so hubby bought a book detailing 60 of the best onsen ryokans all over Japan. Now let's be clear: there are hundreds, if not thousands of onsen ryokans all over Japan. These 60 onsen ryokans are special because their baths are of natural sulfur hot spring water, and of course because of excellent service, food, and facility. 

We knew we didn't want to go too far out to Hokkaido or Kyushu. After having picked out a dozen contenders in the nearby Yamanashi, Nagano, etc., we went with Iwanoyu (岩の湯) at Seni Onsen (仙仁温泉, not sure if this is an area or town name), in the city of Suzaka, Nagano.

We liked the photos we saw in the book. We liked that the ryokan has 5 private baths at no extra charge (if it's open, you go in, lock the door, and it's yours for however long you want!), in addition to the usual separated men and women baths, each with indoor and outdoor pools. The extra icing is a famous large "cave bath" for adventurers who like to explore. We liked that the kaiseki meal was described as one of the best around. It was really the food that sold me, surprise, surprise ^.^

Here's the wagashi and matcha we were served upon checking in.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Addiction The Eyeshadow Part II

In early October, J. and I visited the Addiction counter at the Ginza Mitsukoshi to check out the then newly released North Star collection. But really we were there to play with all The Eyeshadows and pick up whatever gem(s) we could find before we leave Tokyo :( I ended up going home with 021 Love Affair (P), 040 Dolly Bird (P), 069 Flash Back (P), 074 Fudge (ME), 091 Super Moon (P), and 110 Old Town.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Coffret D'Or Premium Stay Rouge Part VI

I have to do some photo gymnastics to skip over a great many of food and vacation pics to get to these lovely Coffret D'Or Premium Stay Rouge in RD-220 Orchid Red and WN-74 Cassis Wine, both LE from the 2016 fall collection.

I've already swatched this collection in person back in September, and while at it I'll mention that I have the LE PK-310 and RD-221 from the winter collection also, both secured via Rakuten JP. Will review these later.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Jill Stuart Rouge My Dress

Back in May hubby and I were planning to spend Golden Week in Taipei. But of course the plane ticket prices were tripled, and so we scrapped that plan and took a last minute trip in mid September instead (yes, I'm extremely behind on photos still...). Anyway, while on the plane I browsed through the shopping magazine and spotted this Jill Stuart Rouge My Dress Trio Flowery Balloon Collection, a Cathay Pacific duty free exclusive.

The trio includes the Rouge My Dress lipsticks in 12 Lucky Charm, 13 Berry Tutu, and 15 Fluffy Scrunchy, all for $75 which is actually a decent price considering these lippies retail for 3,000yen a piece plus tax. I needed an excuse to try a Jill Stuart lipstick 3(or three, ha), so I picked up the set despite their names really irked me. Does Rouge My Dress mean to only wear rouge and no other articles of clothing? Or deface a dress with rouge? =.=

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Friday, December 2, 2016

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream

I've been using this 28.3g/1oz. sample tube of First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream to layer over Caudalie Premier Cru The Cream, because believe it or not the Caudalie cream alone wasn't enough to keep my dry-combo skin from flaking. This is only a temporary arrangement until I'm through with the Caudalie tube, so I'll update again if the FAB cream fails then too (hope not!).

Thursday, December 1, 2016

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum

Just one week after moving home, my nose, cheeks, and chin all started flaking :( So what did I do but dig out this little 7.5mL/0.25fl. oz. tube of First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum and the Ultra Repair Cream, which I'll review next. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser

Hubby and I have been using this 200mL/6.7fl. oz. pump bottle of Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser since moving home from Tokyo. I think we're almost half way through the bottle.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser

I thought this 20mL/0.6fl. oz. sample tube of Fresh Soy Face Cleanser would last me at least a couple of weeks but I burned through it in half that time :(

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