How was your long weekend?  Mine's pretty productive, surprisingly.  I couldn't believe that I was able to get my ass out of bed and start to work on my to-do list.

I was supposed to publish this review yesterday but our internet connection did not cooperate.  Soooo frustrating!

Anyway, today's featured product has been in my "backup bin" for months until I decided to take it out because I already ran out of face powder.  This baby was included in the loot bag I received when I attended the brand's event back in April.

It's called Smooth Cover Mineral Powder and I got that shade No. 2/Natural Beige which I think is darker than the only other option which is, you guessed it, No. 1/Light Beige.  

From the pan, it doesn't look like the typical "natural beige" powders.  It's obviously lighter but I guess that's just how Japanese brands make it.

The powder is housed in a black sleek packaging and it also comes with a sponge or as they call it, Silky Fit Puff.  However, same with all of the face compacts I've tried, I rarely use it because I prefer a brush.  The applicator is quite good though.  Not the usual, crappy ones.

There's also a built-in sun protection (SPF 32 PA++).

In case you're wondering, that's just an ugly mark on the right side.  I accidentally poured acetone all over it.  Unlucky duckie. :(

Smooth Cover is basically a powder foundation.  It claims to create a natural-looking makeup, add coverage and control oil.

Here's how the actual powder looks like.  It's very finely milled and feels super silky.  There's no artificial fragrance whatsoever too.

What I like about it

- has SPF
- gives light coverage (dark spots are still visible but pores are evenly covered)
- leaves a silky surface
- doesn't break me out
- gives a bit of a highlight so perfect to use on the under eye area
- sets nicely (super matte at first but after a few hours, it would look better)
- keeps the shine at bay for hours

I'm half-hearted about...

- the silica
My skin is okay with that but I'm just concerned about the pore-clogging effect overtime especially if it's in a product that I use almost everyday.  

- the price
If you think of it and use it as powder foundation, then I guess 695 php is not that steep.  However, for a blotting/setting powder, that could be a little pricey considering that it's also a drugstore product.  

left photo: after 4 hours | right photo: after retouching
*with just concealer underneath

- the not-so lightweight formula
I appreciate the light coverage because for not-in-the-mood-to-wear-makeup days, when I only wear concealer, it's perfect.  However, when I have foundation or BB cream on and then, I use this as setting powder, it makes my makeup feel and look heavy (if that makes sense).

- using it at oily t-zone hours
I've noticed that it doesn't apply evenly on a greasy face.  It appears splotchy.

- the shade
Oh yes.  It's 1 to 2 shades lighter.  I know.  It's too obvious because my face doesn't match my neck area without lighting.  It would suit people with fair skin better.

left photo: after 4 hours | right photo: after retouching
*with just concealer underneath

Personally, I really prefer actual face powders which I can use for blotting and setting my makeup rather than foundations in pressed or loose powder form.  Why?  Well, as I've said many many times, I'm not a fan of heavy-looking (unless it's still dewy and glowy), cakey makeup finish.  I totally avoid that kind of look.  It's like there's 1 kilo of foundation on my face.  Ugh.  I don't even want to think about the suffocating skin underneath. 

Sooooo, I guess this powder is just not for me even though I like the oil-control feature.  Too bad.

Anyway, I'm thinking of selling it or giving it away to my cousin (she tried it and she liked it apparently). 

What do you think?

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your sweetest drug,

One more month before Christmas!  But before all of that jingle rockin', jingle swingin' and jingle ringin', it's turkey roastin' and pie bakin' first.  Haha!  Okay, I don't know why I've come up with that.

Well, I hope you're keeping up with all of the crazy Thanksgiving deals.  I'm actually excited about a few online sales, beauty-related of course and it's very likely that I'll get some makeup products.  We'll see!

Anyway, let me talk about these three samples I've recently tried.  At the end of this post, I'll also say which one's my favorite.  Oops!  Don't scroll down the bottom of the page just yet.  :)

SkinFood Platinum Grape Cell Toner

A premium toner containing visible platinum particles and grape cells that provide intensive firming treatment for aging skin. 

This is an anti-aging toner by SkinFood and key ingredients are platinum and grape.  Gamay grapes to be exact.

Turns out, this is meant to be applied directly onto the face using your palms.  No need for cotton.  However, I did the opposite.  Haha!

I find the full-sized version's glass packaging very pretty.  It comes with a pump as well.

The consistency of not very watery.  It's slightly gel-ish.

What I like about it

- double cleanse the face (after washing if you use cotton) 
- doesn't over dry the skin
- doesn't leave a super tight feeling
- feels light 
- non-greasy (there's bit of stickiness but still fast-absorbing)

I couldn't tell if there's a grape scent because smelled alcohol instead.

Tony Moly Panda's Dream White Magic Cream

Alright!  Another one from Tony Moly's Panda's Dream line! 

Remember my Eye Patch review here and Hand Cream review here?

The caption on the brand's website is really funny.  It says something about a panda's dream of becoming a white bear!  Do they have polar bear goals?  Haha!

At first, I wasn't sure if it's a skincare product or a makeup base, so I looked it up online.  Apparently, it can be used either way.  However, I opt for the latter because it really felt like such and I don't want to (and should not) sleep with makeup on.  Ever.

The cream itself looks like cake icing.  It also has a nice fragrance though I can't remember if it's similar with the Panda's Dream Hand Lotion.

Overall, it's okay and the instant whitening effect is a good idea but I really think it's not for me.  As you can see, it creates a white mask because it's like white paint and nowhere close to natural skin color.  

Perhaps, people white fair to very fair skin who just want to even out their skin tone and lessen the appearance of dark spots would enjoy this more. 

I know in Korea, they prefer pale-looking makeup so this one would work as a nice makeup base to achieve that look.

Here, I only used a concealer on top of Magic White Cream and it's pretty obvious that my face is unnaturally fairer.  

I also noticed that after application, it slightly covered the pores and prepped the skin.  Maybe it's because of the thick consistency and pigmentation.'

Tony Moly Floria Peeling Gel

Now, moving on to Floria line.

Don't be scared by the "peeling" word there.

I didn't do a research about this product before testing it out.  I just massaged it on my face and I was like "woah" upon realizing how it works.  

This one's an exfoliator gel, not really a peeling gel because it doesn't peel off a layer of the skin.  It's like a dupe of Cure Natural Aqua Gel in terms of formula and function.

Basically, you just rub it on your face and you'll start to see the eraser crumb-like things forming. 

Truth is, I'm still skeptical if those are really "dead skin cells" or if it's just a gimmick.  

From what I've read in a blog, you can test it on a different surface such as wood, glass or plastic and add a bit of oil (one of the elements in the skin).  If the debris don't form, there's a high chance that the product actually works.  Otherwise, the actual product just transformed to crumbs and it's not doing anything for your skin.  Read more here.

Nevertheless, I really like the feeling after the cleansing.  My skin feels soft, smoother and not dry , so I want to believe that it somehow works.  

I also want to try it on my underarms and try to exfoliate that area.

That's all!  

I'm glad that any of these three products didn't cause any irritations.

So, it's time to pick huh?  Well, I think it's obvious enough.

Yep, the Floria is my top pick.  As a matter of fact, I want to buy a full-sized tube to test it out further and besides, it's a cheaper alternative to Cure so why not right?

What do you think?

your sweetest drug,

This one is my 3rd out-of-the-metro trip and probably my last this year.  I don't have any plans yet for December but I really want to go and have a new adventure before 2015 ends.  How about you?

Anyway,  together with Kris and his fambam, we went to Baguio last month for a 2-day road trip.  We thought the weather was not going to permit us but fortunately, it wasn't so bad there even after a very strong typhoon.  We expected worse actually.  Well, some roads were closed and we still saw signs of devastation such as fallen trees, landslides and more.  However, those didn't prevent us from having a nice, relaxing time in the Summer Capital of the Philippines.

After lunch, we left NLEX at around 1 PM and arrived at the house at 5:30 PM.  We had one quick stopover at a gas station in Pampanga and drove up via Marcos Highway.  Not Kennon Road because it was closed due to landslides.

We stayed at a Transient house and we payed around 6,500 php per night I think.  The whole place could accommodate 20 pax.

Camp John Hay and mini-golfing for first day!

We also tried to drop by La Presa but it was raining and roads seemed to be impassable, so we didn't push through.

I got to try strawberry taho for the first time!  Yea!  I would like it better though if it's a bit sweeter.

Mines View Park was the next stop after our lunch at SM Baguio.  

I almost shrieked seeing these huge, adorable dogs!

Here's a classic - biking at Burnham Park.

So, that's it!

I wanna see more of Baguio so I already put it in my places-I-wanna-visit-again list.  Haha!

What do you think?

your sweetest drug,

Sam Smith concert tomorrow!!!  Yea!  I can't wait to hear him sing live.  I love all of his songs but my top favorites are Latch, Nirvana, How Will I Know, Lay Me Down, Leave Your Lover, Make It To Me, Omen and Restart.  Anyway, who's going too?

I'll also be attending a company-event on Sunday but I'll try my best to upload the Baguio video before I leave and publish the post by midnight (hopefully).  

Lastly, I received an invite for a brand launch on Monday.   For sure, it's going to be fun!  

So yes, it's a busy yet exciting weekend for me.  Hoping you have a nice one as well!

Happy FriYay!

your sweetest drug,

I've already finished a tub of my snail eye cream so it's time to try a new one.  But when I was searching what to buy next online, I suddenly remembered I have a backup waiting to be taken out from my little "stash container".

I first showed you this eye-guy on my April/May haul video.  Now, let me share what I love about it and more.

I've been using this for about 3 weeks now and I must say, it's impressive.  I love it so much, I'm already thinking of getting a second jar.  A bigger one hopefully.

So, here's why.

It has a cream-gel, lighweight type of formula and it glides on very nicely.  You won't even need to apply any pressure.  It also feels like you're putting oil onto your face but without the greasy, icky texture.

There's no fragrance whatsoever as well.  I  think that's one of Clinique's trademarks.

The best part about it is that, it leaves a velvetty, extra-smooth surface.  Before, I was using my eye cream only at nighttime, but now with All About Eyes, I also love to use it as part of my daytime skincare routine because I just find that it somehow acts as a primer, helping in making concealer application easier.  It keeps my eye area hydrated too.

Oh.  You might have noticed that it's still in the old packaging.  The new tub design is better and it looks sleek!

I'm also not sure if there's a bigger version of it because I haven't had a chance to check the product personally at a Clinique's local store.  If there is, I will likely go for it.  Hopefully, the price is not too steep.

But I won't also have any problem with a tiny tub like this one and since I only need a small amount twice a day anyways, I think this one would about last two months.

So, let's talk about results.

It's making my fine lines less visible.  However, I think I would need to wait a little bit longer to see long-term benefits like reduced wrinkles and brightened circles.  I'm also not getting any new creases so that's a good sign.

My eye area feels soothed and refreshed every time I use this.  The de-puffing effect is not mind blowing but it's just enough for you to notice the difference.

Most importantly, it hasn't triggered any millia around my eyes.  So perfect!!

Overall, I'm officially in love with this eye cream!

What do you think?

your sweetest drug,