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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Cuddle Buddy (CB)

This is a term I've been introduced to only this year. According to R, a cuddle buddy (CB) is the female version of a fuck buddy (FB) - which seems kind of sexist but a bit true when you think about it. A FB is someone you go for no-strings sexy times; A CB is someone you go for no-strings cuddle times. Both may or may not be successful. That is, it might actually have complications with regards to the feelings of one or more parties.

With regards to either generally and to CBs specifically, there are some questions I have in my head  and should be in the minds of those who are looking for one!

Is it better to have a friend or a stranger as a CB?
- If the former, a close friend or someone closer to an aquaintance?

Would you ever go on a site looking for one? (granted, I'm pretty sure there isn't one in my area)

What are the risks involved?

What can you do to protect yourself for these risks?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

I love strawberries

Hungry? Have a quick snack of strawberries and cream :)


Strawberries and Cream


Monday, December 24, 2012

A Quick Tip #3

Happy Holidays!

(Greetings to whatever type of celebration you guys are having)

It's a time for eating! I love eating, and I always end up gaining weight at this time. While there are some tips to lose weight out there, the tip I'm giving now is for bloating - how to avoid that excess water weight. Whenever you eat salty foods, drink water and coffee (or something high in caffeine) afterwards. Salty foods make you thirsty, which is why you drink water and therefore bloat. If you don't drink water, you'll end up taking it from places you shouldn't be getting it from. But adding coffee afterwards prevents your kidney from reabsorbing salt! It's also a diuretic  which means you end up excreting the water with the salt.

Hope this helps :)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Starbucks: Rekindle the Joy

For any of those interested, Starbucks is offering a raffle on its facebook page (Philippines) as an app*. I clicked the link and saw that it required some sensitive information, which disappointed me - which you would understand if you read my recent post on virtual identity.

One of the prizes was a starbucks planner. Since I already have the planner, I'm not too torn up about it. However, I really am disappointed at the way things are turning out.

*I'm not going to post the link because I'm not sure if it's proper for me to do so.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Review: TWG at Greenbelt

Hi M! This post today is care of my friend M who treated me out to a wonderful girl's day out at TWG in Greenbelt 5! Since we were trying to be poshy-posh (and succeeded) in the restaurant, we did not take any pictures. Because pictures are for tooles and we ARE LADIES!! :D

We got there at 4 pm wherein we were told that reservations were only accepted from 12 to 1 so we decided to walk around until 5 pm. When we came back we were seated relatively quickly (because time for low tea was over) and spent 30 minutes deciding what teas to get.

M's impression of TWG: "Gold and Gilded."


What we ordered:
1. Chic Set Menu - P500
Includes:
2 Scones with clotted cream and jam (apricot?)
3 Assorted sandwiches (cucumber, turkey ham and shrimp)
Snow Mountain Tea +100 (not a normal tea)

2. Imperial Set Menu - P650
Includes:
Creme Brulee Tea
Pastry (we had a strawberry tart)
3 Croque Royale (salmon cheese thingies)
3 Macarons

3. Christmas Lights Tea - P195

Very obviously, we decided to have high tea instead ^^ We spent several hours eating. Let me tell you, even with the small, dainty servings, we were able to stuff ourselves mostly because of the teas!

Snow Mountain Tea: neither of us liked this very much. Needed to commit to sugar (a lot of it) in order to be palatable. They say this was a citrus but tasted like the "floweriest of flower teas."

Creme Brulee Tea: when they poured it into our cups, you could smell the scent of strawberries wafting in the air. The first sip was a disappointment tough, but it got better with the second sip. M discovered the sugar on this and made it really good. Half a teaspoon would work.

BTW, the sugar in this establishment/tea house was not in real cube format - aka lumps! M says they could still be considered cubed because of their shape but I do not consider them valid sugar cubes (Sorry M!). So no lumps of sugar for us.

Christmas Lights Tea: M's favorite because it matched the desserts we had perfectly. Didn't really need sugar but tasted good with it. The Creme Brulee tea didn't complement the food while the first tea was horrible.

Morrocan Mint Macaron: Yummy! Tasted like mint. Enough said.

Bain de Roses Macaron: Flowery and ok.

Blackcurrant: Sweet. "Too fruity, lacking substance."

The Macarons cost P50 per piece. I would definitely consider buying the Morrocan Mint Macaron again, though maybe not the other two. I could see myself buying their other flavors to try. While the macaron's were not very elegant, missing the cookie to filling 1:1 ratio, they were sufficiently crumbly and chewy.

I really enjoyed my time there with M. Unfortunately, financial incapabilities prevent something like this from happening as often as I wish.

If you want to have a girly day enjoying high or low tea, then this is the place for you. If you're on a budget, just buy two pots of tea (one per person - it's a rule they have) and enjoy. Expect to spend at least P200 per person, excluding tipping if you don't want to get any food.  While one tea set may be sufficient for a group of two if you just want to experience low tea (I'd recommend the Royal set as it seems more appropriate for low tea), you won't be satisfied if you don't buy at least one dessert per person.

The only negative point of the experience: the servers, while being very nice, polite and helpful, did not seem to be trained to pronounce the names of their products properly. Also, M would prefer that they be capable of recommending teas for your palate/preferences - or give a basic tea test (like you do wine). Hmm... that's an idea, a tea tasting event for TWG! (HEHE, MY IDEA ^^).

Unfortunately, the teas in TWG seem to be VERY EXPENSIVE and the list is overwhelming. I wouldn't trust the tea guide they gave because we found Snow Mountain to be misleading (or was it just us).

THANK YOU M FOR THE MOST WONDERFUL DAY EVER! I LOVE YOU!!

TWG is at Greenbelt 5. Their tea sets are available from 3-6 pm.


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Reflections: Virtual Identity

It is 2012 and I've been thinking that the world has changed so much from the advent of the first computer - and more importantly, of the internet. Nowadays, we are so connected by our machines: desktops, laptops, tablets and phones - almost all of which have some connection to the internet. We use facebook, twitter, instagram and the like to chronicle our lives - mundane or otherwise. Before, each entry into one's virtual life was a matter of creating a story, a thought. Now, a simple or even incomplete sentence will do as we have the power at our fingertips to talk to anyone, anywhere.

Virtual identity. It is now possible to take part of, and steal, other people's lives because we have established a part of ourselves in this digital world where codes create our realities. Everything is now online, or at least available in it such that to lose such a connection becomes akin to losing a limb. I have tried to limit myself, but in vain. I cannot go a week without some device to connect me to this ever expanding web.

But who am I? What I find comforting about this new age, this new landscape, is the ability to create multiple selves with a few clicks of the button. I may have a copy-self: the me who exists in the real world. The one who frets about the lack of privacy, the fear that eventually my every step will be recorded and that this copy would define and overwhelm the me that exists in the physical world... I do not understand how some people are so comfortable of bringing their entire self into this domain. Where they would freely give personal information to a bunch of strangers such that it is normal to give the minutiae of one's life to the horde of friend-aquaintance-stranger and the keys to one's kingdom to service providers that can store this information infintely and sell it to multiple bidders.

It's kind of insane, now that you think about it. Today the tablet (iPad for those able to afford it - especially in the most affluent nations, societies, strata), the smartphone (iPhone, again), the computers (MAC)- ah, truly it is the age of the apple! - when once nobody, or very few people, could even dream it. I'm sure there are other events such as what I feel now that may be even more important - the industrialization comes to mind - but this is what I see now. This is the changing of the world from the century that preceded, if not the millenium.

 I am interested in how this will turn out. Will it get better? worse? Must the self that exists on the net be a full copy of the self that types these letters on the keyboard? Will the world change such that only one's avatar becomes acceptable in exploring a domain that becomes more regulated with each passing day?  But now, while I have the chance,  I will enjoy the little comfort the anonymity of this blog affords.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Movie Review: Rurouni Kenshin

For all of you guys who still haven't watched - why haven't you?- or just want to talk about the movie: here it is. A short review on Rurouni Kenshin: A movie that should have been here ages ago.

I don't need to tell you guys about WHAT Rurouni Kenshin, Samurai X, is about right? It's a live action film now!

Yays

  • Cinematography! Loved the way they brought it into reality. It's hard to make something that's set both in the past and is set in anime-world into something that is semi-believable. On that note, kimono!
  • The characters - because I grew up loving them and I can't help but love them more now. Points for the way they were able to emote *coughKenshincough* ... KAWAII!!!! ^^

Nays

  • Kaouru's final lines... urgh... made em way too long...
  • Subtitles! Too low on the screen to be watched well

Heys

  • Sit in front or in the balcony area so you can actually see the subtitles.
  • Watch with friends


What's your ideal body weight?

So I've been calculating what I'm supposed to weigh, ideally. The BMI isn't very accurate so I've been using Tannhauser's Formula instead. 

For Caucasians:

Ideal Body Weight (in kilograms)  = height (in centimeters) - 100

For Filipinos

Ideal Body Weight (in kilograms)  = height (in centimeters) - 100 - [0.10 x ( height (in centimeters) - 100 )]

I'm still a bit overweight, given this method. I hope I'll be able to diet and exercise this christmas season.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Coffee in a Gas Station


During my trip over the break, I stopped by a Petron station and I saw this:

Chicharon
 All the chicharon you can eat! I can't believe that people buy enough of this that they've stocked all 5 shelves!
Latte
 Needed to wake up a bit so I ordered the above. Don't remember what it's called but it's a remnant of the holloween drinks.


Coffee Place
I got it from here. The coffee was just ok so I didn't feel the need to remember this place. But still, not bad. :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Review: Cetaphil (Gentle Skin Cleanser)



I’ve always seen cetaphil around, but I’ve never felt the desire to buy it: it’s supposed to be “gentle,” and gentle is not something I felt my acne-prone skin needed. However, one day, I discovered a bottle lying around the house and appropriated it for my own use. Since it had a manufacturing and expiration date clearly marked at the bottom of the bottle, I figured it was still fine.

After 3 weeks of using cetaphil once a day, I’ve realized that this cleanser is not for me. Gentle is clearly not the way to go for my skin. Too bad!

Ingredients
Water, Cetyl Alcohol, Propylene Glycol, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate,  Stearyl Alcohol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Butylparaben.

Yays
  • Gentle on the skin.
  • Has clearly labelled manufacturing and expiration date.


Nays
  • Those who dislike parabens will not like this product. For an ingredient list consisting of 8 chemicals, 3 parabens seems to be a bit much.


Heys
  • This goes for other products too: try the small size to see if it works for you before committing to a big bottle.


Okays
  • For those who have no skin problems.
  • For those who have sensitive skin.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Food Porn!


I've just had a lovely sem break and I'd just like to share some of the places I've discovered up north.
  • Olives Restaurant
  • Matutina's Seafood Restaurant
  • Sea and Sky Restaurant
  • Kubong Sawali
  • Cafe Isabela

Olives Restaurant is part of the Thunderbirds Resort in Poro Point, La Union. It is really pretty over there! While the hotel is really expensive, you can always content yourself with merienda in their inhouse restaurant and taking pictures while waiting for your meal (like I did). I was able to take a picture of two of the cakes we ordered below. Each cake came with iced tea (I think it costed around P200 on a promo thing).

Blueberry Cheesecake (Olives Restaurant)

Tiramisu Cake (Olives Restaurant)
 The cakes were  yummy and nicely decorated, but the iced tea was the one to seal the deal (my picture is too ugly to be posted so I won't). According to our server, it was a mix of powdered and brewed tea, orange juice, cinnamon and vanilla. The pizza we ordered was also delicious, and was pounced on before I was able to take my camera out, but it was nothing to really write about.

The servers were really attentive and it was a nice hot day, so we sat indoors. The only snag to the entire meal for me was that there were no desert forks for the dessert; dinner forks are fine for me normally but given the location and the fact that their forks were on the heavy side, I'd have appreciated one nonetheless.

On the less expensive end of the spectrum, Matutina's Seafood Restaurant serves good food at great prices. While I was able to take a picture of their sizzling chicken, it's their Crispy Pata that was the real treat (picture unavailable due to hungry people). It was easily big enough for 4 people and costed less than P400, I think. You get a lot more pata then you'd ever get back in Manila. Also, while we didn't order their sinigang, we had some free soup and it was excellent (they also won some sort of best sinigang award). If only we weren't full, we would have ordered some. Matutina has several branches, but we ate at the Tarlac branch. The only con of the meal, the looooonnggg waiting time due to the large number of customers.

Sizzling Chicken (Matutina's)
If however, you want somewhere more intimate, try the Sea and Sky Restaurant in La Union. It's also a hotel restaurant, but not a fancy one! Rooms in the hotel are cheap for those who are budget conscious. But then I'd go to a resort if I went all the way here. The Crispy Pata costed around P200, good for two people and is delicious on the right side of crispy. Like Olives Restaurant, you're actually paying for a great view; while Olives is all landscaped beauty, you can actually hear the waves lapping at you from your table from Sea and Sky.

Crispy Pata (Sea and Sky Restaurant)
 Also in La Union, with a few more branches elsewhere including Baguio is Kubong Sawali. It has excellent sea food, especially with this Tahong Soup Thing (IDK it's real name). The two were bought as a platter for aroung P600 and feeds 4-5 people. Except for the soup, which should feed 2 hungry sillysloths. For smaller parties, you can get 2 starters for P185 which could feed 2-3 people.

Seafood Platter Thing (Kubong Sawali)
Tahong Soup Thing (Kubong Sawali)

Finally, Cafe Isabela in the Bencab Museum is another must see. Mostly for the museum itself! The cafe has a nice view of the surrounding grounds and mountains in Baguio, and rewarding yourself by chilling with a treat after touring the place. The pancake costed P160 with the ice cream at P150. The food is decent, but their vegetables are what make this place appealing (not pictured but eaten - if food comes while I'm eating, it's probably not going to get pictured). My only regret is  that I couldn't try any of their drinks.



Cinnamon Pancake with Banana (Cafe Isabela)
Volcano Ice Cream with Strawberries (Cafe Isabela)
One of the best things about the provinces: good food at good prices.


How was your break?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Review: Sunsilk Pink

I’ve always found myself conflicted about brand re-imaging, repackaging and reformulating. In fact, I feel the same way about any type of change in general. Sometimes, I feel like I’ve lost an old friend, as I felt with the Skintel change. However, I was delighted by the not-so-recent renewal by Sunsilk as it seemed to spur on innovation in other hair brands.


Sunsilk pink or Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Managable under Yuko Yamashita -because she is supposed to be a straight & smooth hair expert- is supposed to keep your hair more manageable with it’s Keratin Yogurt Nutri-Complex®.

Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Conditioner (left) and Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Shampoo (right)
Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Conditioner (left) and Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Shampoo (right)


I have forgotten how much this costed but it was less than P200 (around $5) for the lot.

Ingredients
Shampoo:
Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Dimethiconol, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Perfume, Sodium Chloride, Carbomer, Glycol Distearate, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Disodium EDTA, DMDM Hydrantoin, Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Lysine HCI, Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Yogurt Powder, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, TEA-Dodecylbenzenesulfonate, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Magnesium Nitrate, Magnesium Chloride, Aminomethyl Propanol, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, CI 17200

Conditioner:
Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Behentrimonium Chloride, Perfume, Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine, Amodimethicone, Methylparaben, Lactic Acid, Disodium EDTA, PEG-7 Propylheptyl Ether, Cetrimonium Chloride, Lysine HCI, Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Yoghurt Powder, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiozolinone, Dipropylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Magnesium Nitrate, Magnesium Chloride, Aminomethyl Propanol, Citric Acid, , Potassium Sorbate, CI 17200

 This info came from the 90ml shampoo bottle and 180 ml conditioner bottle I finished.

Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Conditioner (left) and Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Shampoo (right)
Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Conditioner (left) and Sunsilk Co-creations Smooth & Manageable Shampoo (right)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

All the Beauty Boxes

OMG! Beauty boxes are finally in the Philippines. For those who are confused, beauty boxes are monthly subscriptions wherein for a certain set fee, subscribers receive a monthly box full of goodies. These goodies may be trial sized or full sized, and you never know what you'll be getting. 

Here's a list of all the subscriptions i know about. Don't know which one to subscribe to :(



  • bdjbox.com - 480 for 1 month (until April 30), 580 starting May. Better deals for longer subscriptions, brands known.
  • glamourbox.ph - 595 for 1 month. Brands unknown.
  • saladbox.com.ph - 500. Brands known.
  • Pretty Fix Collections -599. Found via FB. Newcomer.
I'm leaning to the bdjbox because I know which brands are coming, but since it's shipping next week, I don't know if I'll make it in time.

On the other hand, if you are interested in trying out new products and want to go a step further: try sampleroom.ph. Unlike Beauty Boxes that are simple pay and receive transactions, sample room works like this:

 Receive 100 points > Get product(s) > Review > Get points > Get product(s)

Latest Edit: April 15, 2014 (prices unedited)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Coke

Okay. I haven’t posted in 4 months! Studying is really taking a lot out of me. But I will try to make at least 1 post/month. Because I should have some kind of outlet, right?


Coke: the softdrink, not the drug. I’ve recently gone on a grocery run and bought myself a 2 Liter bottle for less than 50 pesos (that’s a bit over $1, maybe $1.25). I was gonna get myself 2 cans, but a can costs P19 (around $.50) in the grocery (much better than the P25 when I buy it outside). I decided that I might as well buy the 2L version since I’d be drinking it all week to alternate it with coffee. I know it’s unhealthy, but when I have to study, my body does take a hit when I’m on a budget.

 Actually, my wallet takes a hit too.

For me, it’s easy to make this decision during my hell weeks (def. a horrible time wherein I have to stay awake and active for long periods of time in order to complete an infinite number of tasks).

Given life on a student budget, I felt that it would be an acceptable trade-off. However, some people might think that it’s always better to buy something that will save you money in the long run. But what about your health? During 75% of the school year, I would prefer buying the 2 cans compared to the 2L bottle. Why? Because I wouldn’t need to drink 2L. I would have to think twice about opening that can (because I would have to finish that can after opening it) instead of just refilling my glass again and again and again. Cans actually end up staying in the fridge longer than I expect.

Heys
  • Think twice about buying that jumbo sized something. Think twice about buying anything at all!
  • Share with friends. A sneaky way not to drink everything yourself.
  • Dilute with ice to drink less. You'd be surpised at how much space ice actually takes up.

Just a few things I found at the back of my bottle:

Coca-cola 2L
Serving size: 240ml
Calories per serving: 100
Total carbohydrate: 25g

Ingredients
Carbonated water, sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, phosphoric acid, natural flavors, caffeine.

Extra nerd stuff?

What I found really annoying was that the coke bottle gave something about needing X glasses of water/liquid per day and drinking coke to hydrate yourself.

First, there is no actual amount prescribed for how much water you should drink per day since there are many factors that affect how much water you actually need. Second,  coke will only make you more thirsty. Read the ingredients! Hint: one reason starts with an s and the other with a c.

Finally, How come making this stuff is so cheap, yet they sell them in restos for even 100% more than their market price.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Thoughts: A question about people

When is the right time to say those three special words?

I love you.

For some people, it is the easiest thing in the world. The sentence dropping from their lips nearly as often as they breathe. For some people, it is an impossibility.

Does the latter bother some people? The former?

It depends on the person. But can a relationship of one and the other survive, or is it an impossibility?

I guess what I wonder is: in relationships, is it better to be opposite or similar to your partner?

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Review: Neutrogena Hydro Boost

This may be an older product, but I haven't been able to try it until recently. I've been using it for a month and I think I'm ready to review it. I have no idea what the price is. Sorry for the bad pictures....

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Mousse Cleanser (left), Clear Lotion (middle) and Essence (right)

Mouse Cleanser Ingredients
Glycerin, magnesium aspartate, zinc gluconate, copper gluconate, Olea europaea (olive) leaf extract


Essence Ingredients
Sodium hyaluronate, glycerin, cetearyl olivate, sorbitan olivate, magnesium aspartate, zinc gluconate, copper gluconate, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone


Ingredients list taken from thefilipinodoctor.com



Clear Lotion Ingredients
Aqua, dipropylene glycol, glycereth-26, butylene glycol, glycerol, dexpanthenol, benzyl alcohol, sodium benzoate, tween 20, citric acid, magnesium aspartate, zinc gluconate, parfum, sodium hyaluronate, Canarium album Raeusch, copper gluconate


Ingredients list taken from cosdna.com

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Serenitea

Serenitea is one of the more established milk tea shops out there. At P95 for a medium, cold classic milk tea including one sinker (this is a pudding) it's neither one of the cheaper nor more expensive places out there. 

This is one of their bestsellers, Nagoya, I  think.

Serenitea: M Nagoya Milk Tea



I included the chair because I loved the design. I found it very cute :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Review: Dove Damage Therapy Intensive Repair Shampoo and Conditioner

Have you tried Dove Damage Therapy Intensive Repair Shampoo and Conditioner? I had several sachets of these I'd been using for a while.


Shampoo Ingredients
Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Ammonium Chloride, Dimethiconol, Glycol Distearate, Glycerin, Fragrance (Parfum), Carbomer, Ppg-9, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Amodethicone, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Poloxamer 217, Glyceryl Oleate, Tea-Dodecylbenzenesulfonate, Tetrasodium Edta, Dmdm Hydantoin, C11-15 Pareth-7, Laureth-9, Peg-180M, Trideceth-12, Lysine Hcl, Silk Amino Acids [ Alanine, Glycine, Serine, Arginine, Isoleucine, Cystine, Histidine, Glutamic Acid], Borago Officinalis Seed Oil [Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Linoleic Acid, Oleic Acid, Eicosenoic Acid], Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Ext. Violet 2 (Ci 60730).


Conditioner Ingredients
Water (Aqua), Cetearyl Alcohol, Ceteryl Alcohol, Dimethiconol, Cetrimonium Chloride, Glycerin, Quaternium-18, Fragrance (Parfum), C11-12 Isoparaffin, Propylene Glycol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Poloxamer 217, Disodium Edta, Meroxapol 311, Quatenmium-18, Amodimethicone, Tea-Dodecylbenzenesulfonate, Dmdm Hydantoin, C12-14 Sec-Pareth-5, C12-14 Sec-Pareth-7, Lysine Hci, Citric Acid, Silk Amino Acids [Alanine, Glycine, Serine, Arginine, Isoleucine, Cystine, Histidine, Glutamic Acid], Borago Officinalis Seed Oil [Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Linoleic Acid, Oleic Acid, Eicosenoic Acid], Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone


Ingredients list taken from Amazon.com


The conditioner helped tame my hair and kept it soft and shiny without the weight. It did not, however, prevent split ends. On the other hand, the shampoo was a big no-no for me as it aggravated my dandruff. I did not try the two separately.


Yays
  • Keeps hair soft and shiny
  • Affordable, though not cheap, this is not an expensive life
Nays
  • Did not prevent split ends (despite product claims)
  • Made my dandruff worse
Okays
  • Those who don't have dandruff may have better results



Buy Again?
The shampoo is a definite no. The conditioner is a maybe. I'd rather try other lines for now.

Friday, June 22, 2012

So long Slippers!

My favorite pair of slippers are these green slippers with gold accents from iPANEMA. Bought at a sale for around P400 ($10), these have been with me for around 2.5 years. I've used then 3-5 times a week for some heavy duty walking. They were with me in the USA and in Japan. Though these slippers are not the best for your feet, these were one of the best slippers I've ever had for comfort and fashion.


 Unfortunately, my slippers now have to be retired due to the cracks that I've noticed on both sides of my slippers.  They're both pretty big and I don't want to risk getting de-slippered at a bad time.


Goodbye slippers! I think it's time for me to find a new pair and concentrate on closed-toe shoes for now!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sun Broadband Sim Experience


Sun wireless broadband prepaid sim experience
Price paid: P50
Frustration level: high
Objects used: sun cellphone, sun wireless broadband stick, laptop
Satisfaction: 5/10

Since I no longer had access to a PLDT modem + router during the weekdays, I decided to use my dad’s old Sun Wireless Broadband USB stick. I bought a prepaid sim for P50 which came with 5 hours free internet, consumable in 5 days. I plugged it, installed the software and pressed connect and got the ERROR 619 message. Repeatedly. I also got a text in my dashboard saying that my sim wasn’t activated and to activate it by calling 220. I tried it, also repeatedly. Didn’t work.

So I called up the hotline at 333. I was unable to talk to anyone for 1 hour: I only got female voice recordings and bad music. Thank god for loudspeaker!

Finally, I got connected to a tech support guy. For this final call, there was a waiting time of 5 mins and a talking time of 15 mins. While I must complain about how long it took me to get through to someone, I must recommend this person for being patient and professional.

What I learned from the call:

  • To activate sim, text BALANCE to 2225. This was not in my prepaid booklet: it stated that the balance inquiry is for balance inquiry, not for activation. It may have been in the USB booklet, if ever, but I didn’t have it. Why in the world would I get that stupid text then?
  • Blue is best. Check the color of the connected stick. This is the faster of the two. Try getting the blue by using the WCDMA only settings and manually searching for 3G. If not, you’re stuck with 2G, which is pretty much crap on laptops.

So I guess, for my area, I wouldn’t choose sun broadband since I can’t connect to their 3G network. It’s prepaid so it’s okay with me, and it’s a bit expected. If only the hotline didn’t take so long, I’d give this experience a 7.

Does anyone know if I can use a Globe/Smart sim with the sun stick?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Fathers's Day!

I am so tired right now because of all the changes going on in my life. I definitely know that my blogging will be affected by it. This is just a quick post to make sure that I keep posting (at least once a week, I hope).


Thank you fathers of the world! Thank you specially, papa, even if you will never read this :P


On another note:


Uniqlo is open and will be on sale for some items until the 21st. Jeans are on sale until July 5.


Do not use the turmeric mask unless you are 100% awake. I tried it when I was super tired yesterday and ended up making a big, permanent mess. *sigh* It looks like I'm back to other, less messy, masks now.


SM has this butterfly app that allows you to get discounts in SM, as long as you have a smartphone. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I've not had internet this past week, so I'm even more sympathetic to those who do not have smartphones and internet access.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Computer Maintainance Tips

I am a student with a 4-year old laptop that was bought during a time when the unit was low to mid-range (definitely state of the art). For four years, this laptop (that has no name), has been my loyal companion through a billion hours of coursework. Unfortunately, maybe due to age, misuse or generally bad technology (as compared to now), I've had several problems with this laptop, including but not limited to:

  • low battery life
  • overheating
  • slowness


Since I cannot afford other gadgets such as tablets, much less a new laptop, I've had to figure out ways to care for my laptop. Hopefully, it'll last another 4 years. Some tips I've found that help preserve my laptop:

  • Do not overcharge your battery. As with all gadgets, once it reaches high 90s, unplug it. You should also allow your battery to drain, so don't start charging until the battery is low.
  • Use a cooling fan. Additionally, make sure that air can circulate underneath the laptop. Unfortunately, my cooling fan is not enough: I have to use a real electric fan and make it face my laptop to keep the temperature down.
  • Make sure your laptop is well-wrapped during transport. You never know when an accident could happen.
  • As much as possible, let your laptop rest. If you're not using it, shut it down or at least put it on standby. Make sure that when you let your laptop idle, it automatically engages a low-powered screen-saver or goes to sleep on its own.
  • Clean your laptop regularly. You can use special wipes to wipe down laptop screens and keyboards. Make sure that your computer is turned off while cleaning.
  • Protect everything. Always have anti-virus software and scan everything that enters your PC. Don't click anything without scanning.
  • Keep your e-space neat by deleting unnecessary files and defragmenting regularly. Don't allow your computer to enter low memory territory as it makes them run slower.


Are there any other things that should be done? Hmmm....I can't think of anymore right now, but I can stress that it's important to be prepared for the worst. Thus:

  • Back-up! Use an external drive of some sort to back-up your files. If possible, have at least 2 just in case one of the hard drives fail.

There are enough horror stories as it is about unsaved files, natural disasters (such as drink spills) and even theft! Keep your back-up(s) and laptop in different places if possible.

Let's hope my laptop and yours lasts a long time.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Review: Matsuri at Tomas Morato

Matsuri is an order-all-you can restaurant that charges P495 for lunch Mondays to Fridays and P595 for dinner Mondays to Sundays and weekend lunches. It's located at Tomas Morato, Quezon City.


It's an order-all-you can restaurant, which is good because:


  1. You don't have to leave  the table
  2. Food is served freshly made


Matsuri serves generally good food. There also weren't a lot of people when I last went, so I didn't have to wait long for my orders. My water glass wasn't empty for very long, and the plates were cleared very quickly. It was very clean and well lit, though I wondered why they still seemed to have Christmas decorations.


I forgot to take pictures, as usual.




Must Try:
  • Gyoza
  • Ushi Ebi Tempura
  • Matsuri Salad
  • Creamy Chicken Mushroom Ragout


The biggest surprise for me was actually their salad. I'm not a big fan of greens, but I ended up demolishing this salad. Maybe because it had a lot of fruit? Anyway, I didn't find their sashimi or miso spectacular, but was decent. 

Since there's a leftover charge of P250, it's best if you avoid the horrible things in their menu too.



Must Not:
  • Chawan Mushi
  • Creme Brulee


I've been to Matsuri a year ago, and I am disappointed at my latest experience with their chawan mushi. It was definitely not the same one I tried a year ago. This version of the dish was the  most horrible one I've ever tasted. It was way too dry! After one bite, I had it sent back. When I complained, I was told that "ganyan talaga siya." As someone who loves, chawan mushi, I'd have object! Although it is type of egg custard, chawan mushi should not taste and feel like badly cooked scrambled eggs.

I was hesitant about trying their creme brulee because of this, but I ended up ordering it nonetheless. It was also on the drier end of the creme brulee scale. You're much better off with the leche flan which was not amazing, but much better in comparison.


I did not try any of their tofu dishes, nor their skewers (which I wanted to as I remembered they were quite good a year ago, but was too full to try).


I like this restaurant, but it's a bit out of my way. And while they're food was good, I'm not over the way they murdered one of my favorite dishes. I'll probably go back in another year if they're still there.

Friday, June 8, 2012

News: Uniqlo is Coming to the Philippines and Review: Uniqlo Lightweight Pocketable Parka

Uniqlo, which is like the Japanese version of GAP, is coming to the Philippines this June 15 at SM Mall of Asia. I'm excited about it, especially with their Vote and Win application on facebook which gives voters the chance to win free shirts and a trip to Japan(ends on June 10, so vote now!).


While I am excited, I am not as excited as I want to be: I'm expecting a drastic mark-up in price compared to that of Japan like what happened to Muji (Mujirushi). Something to look forward to: they will be having a promo on their Barbie UT shirts for women at P590; shirts like that cost 1500 Yen (P833) normally.


On the other hand, maybe it will be much cheaper: they will be having a Jean sale (P590 instead of P990) as soon as it opens. However, UJ's in the Japanese website cost around 2,990 - 3,990 Yen, making it much cheaper!


What I did end up buying while I was in Japan was their Light Pocketable Parka ($50 dollars in the US catalog or around P2200) I bought for around 3,000 Yen (P1700). I bought this jacket because 1) it was unexpectedly colder and rainier in Japan than I expected and 2) I could still use it in the Philippines (especially underneath my white uniform). I bought the M size with pockets on both sides of the jacket and on the inside two plus the pouch pocket. It's very light and surprisingly strong.


Lightweight Pocketable Parka by Uniqlo in White
Lightweight Pocketable Parka by Uniqlo (White)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Tutorial: Turmeric Mask

Turmeric isn't just for curry and other foods, it's for your face and body too. I use it to help prevent acne while preserving the contents of my poor wallet. 


Ingredients:

Powdered turmeric
Calamansi juice (or lemon juice)
Honey


Powdered turmeric can be bought in a supermarket very easily and cheaply with the spice selection (at least in the Philippines, you may have to go to an asian food store). For the tutorial, I used half a singles sachet or 1.5 grams of ground turmeric by McCormick. The 36g - 12 sachet pack itself costs around P40 (around $1 dollar). While there are cheaper versions available, the packet is less messy and allows me to better control the amount of product i put in.

Calamansi, being native to the Philippines, is easier to find and far less expensive than lemon. I used only 10 drops of freshly squeezed calamansi juice on this mask. I've forgotten how much the honey costs but you'll need 1-2 tablespoons. I started with 1 tablespoon's worth then added as I went.

Here's one way to use turmeric as a mask:

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Surfing the Rustan's the Beauty Source

I was looking at Rustan's the Beauty Source a while ago -for those who do not live in the Philippines, Rustan's is a high-end department store in the country- and I saw this upon clicking Skincare >> Price (Low-High) on the first page.






It's a good thing it was stated that prices could change and that the site was not an online store!


However, given that the store is owned by such a large company, I feel that there should be more care taken when displaying prices. Additionally, I do not understand why a product whose price is upon request is considered  on the low end of the spectrum: To me, it's a better sign that something is expensive!


I didn't really find this site very informative as it is as it only gives the name of the product, brand, price and category of each product: it seems more like an online inventory than anything else. They do have a specials section for events and features section  for product promotion, but they were all very short. I don't know what the goal of the website is; hopefully, it will grow more in the future such that people can gain a further understanding of what the product is and maybe even start a Beauty Box of some sort of it's own (One can dream!).


I'll leave this site alone now. Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised in the future.



Monday, June 4, 2012

News: Kanebo Dew Superior Brush Cleanse Pen

Have you heard of it? The Kanebo Dew Superior Brush Cleanse Pen is supposed to be a new (at least to me!) way of spot cleansing so you get rid of all the nasty stuff in your pores. This product debuted quite recently, and I saw it on TV in Japan this late May. However, at 3,000 Yen (3,150 Yen including tax or around 40 USD) for a brush with 6ml of product, I was not very keen buying it.


According to this news release, this pen is meant to be used twice a week after oil cleansing and before normal cleansing (Japanese women seem to wash their face twice: once with both an oil-based cleanser and another with a non-oil based cleanser).


Because the bristles -from 0.7 mm at the root and 0.07 at the tip- are about 1/10 the size of a pore, it seems that it is possible for the brush to be used as a mechanical scrub in order to remove build up on top of pores. Among other things, the liquid in the pen contains Niacinamide and somehow involve collagen and sodium hyaluronate (my japanese isn't that good so feel free to translate the text yourselves :) ).


I think that if someone were to buy this pen, he or she could substitute his or own formula after the original 6 ml has run out (even as an external solution). However, I'm not ready to shell out this much money on something this tiny!


Has anyone tried this? 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Lazy Sunday Morning at CBTLs

No, the title wasn't a spelling mistake. I've been a bad girl and went to 2 different outlets and ended up trying all 3 drinks.... I think you're supposed to get a maximum of two only (one hot and one cold)...

Anyway, CBTL's (Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf) Open House opened at 10 am and offered 3 new drinks, Caramel Cream Tea Latte, Caramel Ice Blended Drink and Caramel Macchiato. I was there at X branch  by around 10:20. Going to this branch was a BIG mistake for me since there were a lot of people who knew about the event. I felt bad for the baristas, who were very nice, since they were stressed by people who ordered (one customer ordered 17 drinks!- most of the customers came from an event occuring nearby). I also felt apprehensive because this turnout might lead to this branch being one of the exempted branches from participating in the next Open  Houses (which would be very disappointing since it is one of my favorite CBTL branches to date).



Caramel Cream Tea Latte 


I ended up reading a meg magazine while waiting for this drink (it took a while since there were so many people). I didn't like all the noise going on (everyone kept talking) and went out as soon as I finished my drink. Anyway, the Caramel Cream Tea Latte wasn't very caramel-y to me, which I did like (It wasn't too sweet). This was my favorite of the trio; I imagine this easily pairing with their cakes (I love CBTL cakes!). I don't know if it's just me though, but this drink seems best drunk during a rainy day (instead of the sunny one today).



Coffee Bean Open House

Today on June 3, 2012 at 10 to 11:30 am, Coffee Bean (Philippines) will be having an Open House for their Caramel treats!

There will be some exceptions, but what a great way to start the morning :)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

A Stupid Mistake

It has only recently come to my attention that I have been very stupid making such a big oversight!


I don't wear make-up often and often wash my face just once with a facial wash/soap. However, I try to use sunscreen everyday (when I go out, at least). Someone recently pointed out to me that I'd need extra help washing it off. Thus, oil cleansing has become a nightly ritual before using cleanser.


I would suggest using a commercial oil cleanser since they would already have emulsifiers in them instead of pure oils. I've only recently finished up my DHC Cleansing Oil.




How To:


1. Wash your hands thoroughly and dry them thoroughly with a clean towel. It does no good use dirty hands to clean one's face.


2. Pump enough oil to cover both palms and gently massage onto face with light strokes. You can warm the oil slightly by rubbing your oiled hands gently together. Take this time to relax.


3. Wet hands slightly and pat face until the oil turns milky. Do this at least twice until most of the oil seems to have emulsified, allowing it to be rinsed off easily.


4. Splash face at least 15 times with warm to tepid water. I'd suggest getting a shallow basin and filling it once or twice if you're averse to using running water.


5. Follow up with your normal cleansing. The previous step may not have removed all the oil and other gunk.






I'd suggest using a make-up remover prior to this when using make-up.


On another note, I am very lucky that I have been using VMV Armada as my sunblock and have not broken out because of it (also recently finished).

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Return

I'm back from Japan! And I brought with me a lot of extra baggage. Around 10 pounds. Unfortunately, it's not in loot....


It's tummy fat!!! Japanese food is yummy and the servings are big. 10 pounds in 2 weeks.....


Time to diet. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Highly Placed = Highly Valued

I've recently heard a talk regarding drugs in the Philippines -of the illegal kind. The speaker used the scare into compliance tactic in his speech: Apparently, there is a zero tolerance policy towards drugs; if you are found with 1. drug paraphernalia or 2. in a place where a raid occurred, you can pretty much be assured off a spot in jail.


In the Philippines, it is a LITERAL spot as you'd be very lucky to get even enough SPACE to sleep in.


It's good that this person, this agency, is taking their/its job seriously. However, what if somebody drops (1) in your bag while you aren't looking or you just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?


Clearly the phrase "innocent until proven guilty" does not apply in this case. It does, however, apply to money laundering when involving high profile politicians.


Is this a good or a bad thing? It's good if you're guilty, bad if you're not. And this person stated without apology that, in effect, it would be regretful if you were innocent but if you were there on the wrong time, then you are going to jail. It is your fault for being somewhere shady in the first place. And you will
lose a chunk of your life while experiencing all of the wonderful experiences of Filipino prisons.


Remember that in the Philippines, aid from the government is usually only for the wealthy and the powerful.


Say no to things that are bad for you, whether it be physical or legal.


What is worse? Taking illegal drugs or robbing a country?

Starbucks Mocha Cookie Crumble + Whoopie Pie

Have you tried the new Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappucino in Starbucks? It's a cup of sugar-sourced calories. I liked how gritty it was, especially when I grinding my teeth, compared to the traditional Mocha Frappucino in Starbucks. Also, that they used a different color for the whipped cream.






Mocha Frappucino (left) Whoopie Pie (center), Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappucino (right)




Starbucks suggested pairing it with a Whoopie Pie, so I did. There's something strangely fun about eating something that resembles Cookie Monster while drinking something with the word "cookie" in it. Especially if you're sharing it with friends and giving it Cookie Monster's voice...






Buy Again?


Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappucino: Maybe in a few months. While it tasted good, it really isn't something I could see myself drinking regularly (I prefer my drinks smooth in general). I'd rather go buy a traditional Mocha Frappucino and save my money and possible fat for something else.


Also, beware of food particles sticking to your teeth. Not very attractive to find something brown stuck there while you're talking to another person.


Whoopie Pie: Maybe in a few months. Again, though it was yummy, I can honestly say that the best thing about it for me was the eyes.




For all Starbucks Philippines Planner holders (me!), note that you have a BOGO coupon for a frappucino this may. On that note, time is running out on the Monday Starbucks promo. Enjoy it while it lasts.