Sunday, December 22, 2013

Volume Discrepancies

I was drinking with my friends when I noticed the difference between two unopened bottles of Tanduay Ice Peach:

Tanduay Ice Peach
Now, I really like this flavor out of all the Tanduay Ice flavors. It's on par with Gilbey's Premium Strength in terms of cheap alcoholic beverages I like to drink. However, I noticed that the bottle on the right has a significant amount - around one mouthful - more than the one on the left. Is the one on the right overfilled? Is the one on the left underfilled?

Either way, it made me question quality control because of failure of standardization. Or is it normal for bottles to be filled this way? It won't stop me from buying my next bottle - for now. But it does bring to mind other things...

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Mr. Park's Bread & Cake

As someone who's always in a coffee shop, I like finding new places to try. In the newly constructed  ETON Emeral Loft building in Emerald Avenue is this bakery-coffee shop beside Highlands Coffee and Chatime. 

I did like how this place looked like, but I didn't take any pictures because I was distracted with my drink. And not in a really good way. But that's for later. What I liked: comfy chairs, many outlets.  While there were people studying, it's mostly a place to eat and socialize. Service was on the meh side and there was a time when there was no one manning the counter. I did not try their WiFi.

I ordered a mint choco frappuccino:

Mr. Park's Bread & Cake Mint Choco Frappuccino P170
First of all, they do not accept credit card payments, so that's a minor inconvenience. Second, there is no whipped cream on top :( While the drink itself was fine, pictures on their FB site led me to believe that there would be decent presentation at the very most, and whipped cream at the very least. I was very underwhelmed - which is a bummer. I like eating whipped cream.

This place is actually situated near Subspace, which may have fun latte art but fails in the presentation of cold beverages as well. While I probably won't buy any cold drinks from Mr. Park's, I am still interested in trying out some of their breads -maybe with hot coffee.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Review: Slice's Sir Francis M. Bacon Cupcake

Slice: Sir Francis M. Bacon

Stopping by at Slice at the Podium, I acquired myself a vanilla cupcake topped with cream cheese and candied bacon. It's rich without being too much as the different flavors tend to balance out (nothing too sweet or savory). At P90 a piece, this ain't cheap. But I prefer sharing this with a friend since it's a rather tall cupcake - so it's not bad at all. I wouldn't eat this regularly, but once in a while - it's nice to have bacon for dessert.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Review: Bench So In Love Shower Gel and Lotion

Bench So In Love Shower Gel and Body Lotion

I've finally gotten around to using one of the bath sets my relatives give me. I don't even think this is still around, but here it is - finally in use.

What I like about the body wash is that while it's flowery and sweet, it's so light, but it lasts long on the skin. Like shown - it's a bit on the watery side and comes off easily in the shower. I tend to use more than I ought, but don't have problems with washing it off after.

With the lotion, it gets a bit stronger and lasts a good bit longer - for more than 10 hours outside. The lotion absorbs equally easily. The downside is that the lotion is in a pot, so I'm usually a bit wary of double dipping.

While I'm not in love with this product, I am in like. I probably wouldn't buy it for myself since I have a whole slew of bath products to go through, but I think some people (especially those in their late teens or early twenties) can appreciate this product better than I can.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Magical Music of Disney

If you're a fan of Disney like me, who was raised on Disney movies, then I'd recommend that you watch The Magical Music of Disney, a Disney Concert performed by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra under Maestro Gerard Salonga. Show times are 3pm and 8pm on September 28, 2013!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

On Miss America

A few days ago, I heard about the extremely negative reaction of some people regarding the coronation of Miss America.

All I can do is give a giant facepalm.

It is not just that these people have accused a person based on her name and skin tone as a terrorist. It's also the fact that they never bothered to learn that there are many different "races" which are non-caucasian in color and name.

Also, the fact that they have posted their misplaced ire over the internet when a quick search would have easily given them the truth.

I do not watch beauty pageants, but the furor over this event has shown me that people place a lot of importance on these, and that some are more ignorant than I thought possible.

Skin does not equal race - get a tan if you don't believe me.

A name is not a person. A person is not a group.

It's 2013. How long will it take us to learn this?

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Have you gotten a Starbucks Card?

I went to a Starbucks in Makati recently and bought the Frap below. It's sad because Makati has this thing against plastic so even iced drinks are served in paper cups. While it might be better for the environment, it's hard to get used to. I like seeing how much I have left, thanks very much.

Anyway, for those who spend a lot on Starbucks's beverages, there's the Starbucks Card introduced just this month.

How to use:
1. Buy the card for P300 - it has P300 usable load.
2. Use the Starbucks card to earn stars.
3. Reload with P100 increments when desired.

12 stars = 1 free grande beverage

Decent, when you consider that CBTL swirl cards give you around half that value. Then again, internets!

There's a time and a place for either :)

If you're into the Starbucks thing, consider registering your card at their site, you can get:
1. 1 free beverage upon registration
2. 1 slice of cake on your birth month (upon purchase of a beverage)

Mind you, their network both online and in-store is still kind of buggy. Also, if you value your privacy, this might be more invasive than you'd like.

If you do get a card, remember to keep it in a safe place since it does have money inside!

Saturday, August 24, 2013


How OC are you about highlighters?

I never thought that there would be a day when I would become so particular about the highlighters I used. A few years ago, I thought that pink was pink and it didn't matter what brand I used. Now I'm trying out different highlighter brands. I've realized that some of the things I like in a highlighter are:

1. Shape - how I hold my highlighter differs if it's fat or skinny, cylindrical or box-like, long or short. It also helps to identify the different brands. Some might find it better to have highlighters all of the same shape, so they'll all be held the same way. Plus they look nicer since they're more uniform. Some might prefer to have different brands because of the different properties of the fluid.

2. Color - including consistency (especially if the paper you use is thinner), it is important to use a color/colors that you feel comfortable with. You have to think about how the shade you choose will show up on the paper you use. Different brands have different shades, with color changes that will sometimes happen depending on if it's on the early or late part of it's life.

Below are 3 different brands of pink highlighters at different parts of their lifespan. You can see that aside from the shade, in general, the evenness and thickness can differ. Note also that the brush might fray easily :(

Highlighters. Left, Artline. Middle, Faber Castell. Right, MG.
Also note that if you use more than one shade, remember to find colors that you feel are most suited to your learning style.

3. Longevity - it sucks to buy a highlighter that dries out early if left for a few moments, or one that has little ink in the first place. You might want to try brands that last longer, or those that can be left out for longer periods of time.

4. Price - some highlighters are really nice, but are super expensive. You might end up spending a lot of money in the long run.

I do have my preferred brands, but I'm always on the lookout for new ones. I also like to experiment on different colors with my own preferences for different texts :)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Review: Giselle by Ballet Philippines

Watched Giselle, performed by Ballet Philippines on opening night (August 16, 2013). Giselle is the first ballet of the 44th season of Ballet Philippines. It was definitely an experience after a nice dinner with M. The First Act was a bust: ballerinas twitching all over the place, you could see the strain; danseur's failing to synch like a bad DL. While the Giselle wasn't bad, she wasn't spectacular. On the other hand, the Duke had a bit of trouble.

The Second Act was gorgeous: Very coordinated Willis! :) The Duke, Giselle, Hilarion and - especially- Myrtha performed wonderfully.

My advice: snooze through the first act (you're not missing anything) and see the second.

Extra: For those who are interested, CBTL is having another open house this Sunday (August 18, 2013). Happy weekend!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe

Warning: Picture Heavy

A few weeks ago, I went and ate in Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe, in Mall of Asia - near the IMAX Cinema - a couple of times.

Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe offers free Wifi, though I didn't use it. The place is cheery and there are a lot of tables. It's really cold though, and the menu is intimidating, so it's hard to decide what you want.

Steamed Spare Ribs With Black Bean (P100)
 This was the first time I've had this, actually. And it was pretty good, except it had bones (which I hate :)) ).

Udon P195
 I don't remember if this was pork of beef since it was a while back. The serving was big, for P195, and from what I remember, the noodles by itself was delicious, the meat was ok.

Lychee Ice Blended P70
 This drink tasted like lychee, as promised. It also had 3 pieces of fruit inside, which I liked. Very nice for the price.

Yin Yong Snow Ice P135

 While this serving of snow ice was huge (good for 3-4 people). It's basically ice, so I'm not impressed. It tasted like really cold milk tea, with red beans hiding at the bottom.

Macau Iced Coffee P75
 A bit too milky for my taste, but I liked the fact that the ice had flowers inside.

Cheese Baked Rice with Black Pepper Beef P245
 This was the best dish I've tasted there: because I love cheese and beef. This might be share-able but not for me! Best enjoyed by hungry self.

Chicken Bulgogi with Rice P195
The meat was a bit dry, so it wasn't that enjoyable.

Will I return? Most probably yes, if I'm in the area, since the servings are big and sometimes even good for sharing.

Monday, August 5, 2013

OKF Coffee

I've been trying out different types of coffee, since I'd like to leave some chilled in the fridge and those P99 Starbucks glass bottles really hurt the pocket. I recently spotted these in the grocery and bought one of each since they were P22.50 a pop

Bought four variants:

1. Caffe Mocha
2. Cappuccino
3. Caffe Latte
4. Caramel Macchiato

I'm not quite sure which one I found totally unpalatable - either the caffe mocha or the cappuccino. There was something about it that tasted off - like alcohol - not the good kind... However, the last two were fine.... It's only the Caffe Latte that I think I'd like to buy again though. For some cheap coffee in a can, it ain't bad at all.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


I've recently made a post regarding Shine Moist Henna Wax. Since I had some delayed concerns - should have thought about it before buying, actually - I wanted to contact the company so I went on their website to try and contact their HK email (both e-addresses): both bounced back.  Should I take that as a warning?

That was extremely disappointing, especially since I've already had a second purchase - a bottle, this time - and now have to think about whether to chuck it or not.


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Review: Vitress Hair Polish (Sun Polish)

Vitress Hair Polish (Sun Protect)
Ever since my dye job, I've had drier hair than usual. So I looked into my stash and found this! It's an old bottle of Vitress, as you can see. It's a white cream that comes in a screw cap tube. Anyway, while this claims to protect your hair from the sun, I doubt it could be adequate protection, because you don't need to cover your hair that much unless you want your hair greasy (and sunscreens only really work if you're slathered in it).

You don't need a generous amount, but there's no need to scrimp either. This is small, cheap and travel friendly so it's nice to bring around. I might buy a new tube sometime in the future, but I'm looking into oils and other methods of correcting the dryness. Don't be fooled into buying this because of its "sun protect" label, but don't be afraid of trying it out either.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The white ideal: origins?

I've recently had a chat with some friends of mine where we ended up talking about the Filipina desire to have light skin; hence the ubiquity of whitening products. While I do admit that a large part of this desire to be fair probably came from the colonial mindset of Filipinos, I believe that this want has been a part of our culture, and others', for a long time.

For example, our East Asian neighbours also express an ideal of a woman with pale skin. This is probably because the white or pale skin indicated wealth as these women did not need to be out in the sun. Incidentally, current trends seem to promote an "Asian fairness" instead of a Caucasian type.

I believe that in the Philippine's past, further than the Spaniards, the fairer sex of the tribes of the Philippines probably aspired to be - well - fairer than the rest. I do think though, that during that time, they would have found Caucasian skin alien instead of appealing. I wonder if there is any proof that that is so, or otherwise?

Whatever the reason for this preference, I do not believe it will be going away soon.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Review: Pacific Rim

This movie came out yesterday (Thursday, July 11). Like the nerd I am, I watched it immediately. This movie, directed by G. del Torro, is actually the first mecha movie I've liked (sorry Transformers, you sucked). Giant robots controlled by humans and glowing aliens - my inner geek was pleased. In addition, hot guy (with pan de sal!) mollified my girl-perving.

However, my inner nerd actually cringed at this -because like most hollywood movies, the science was unsound.

My advice, suspend your disbelief and enjoy the ride. While it's no Avengers, this is one movie to watch on the big screen. I wouldn't probably watch this again (or crave watching it) but it is a visual spectacle, especially for those who like mecha.

Rating: 8/10

Friday, July 5, 2013

Nescafe (Instant) Cappuccino

Have you tried the new Nescafe Cappuccino drink? It's only P8!

Nescafe Cappuccino sachet
 One of the things I like about this product is that it has choco sprinkles attached!

Nescafe Cappuccino sachet (back view)
 Anyway, it says on the sachet that it's 25.5g, but according to the Nescafe Philippines Website, a serving is only around 18g (+200 ml water). I don't know if would taste as good when diluted into the recommended dose, since i used around 8 oz. (240 ml). At this dose, I do like the taste of the Nescafe Cappuccino.
Nescafe Cappuccino with Sprinkles

Yes, the product does froth, and the choco sprinkles added to my enjoyment of the drink. You could probably use this and serve it to guests in a nicer cup :)) It is a sweet drink, with 12.5 g CHO (9.7g sugars) in a serving (and the sachet is good for 1 1/2!) and contains a lot of coffee creamer.

While I wouldn't recommend drinking this regularly, I will buy this again as an occasional cheap treat. Because I love coffee.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Review: Shine Moist Henna Wax Color Treatment in Cyclamen

 Hi Guys! Remember that a few weeks ago, I went and colored my hair? Well, red is a total b*tch to maintain. So, aside from special shampoo and conditioner, a great way to preserve your color is to give it a cellophane treatment! But I don't want to go to a salon, since - well - poorness after the original salon visit. So I bought this instead. This costs P215 for a 100ml container. I heard that you could get it at HBC stores for less than P200, but they weren't in stock and I needed it ASAP.


Shine Moist Henna Wax Color Treatment in Cyclamen (100ml Box)
Now, red hair is really difficult to maintain. I'm not 100% sure why, but the color I came out of the salon with wasn't the color I had 1 week after after 2 washings. Here's how my hair looked pre-treatment:

Red Hair Pre-Treatment

Red Hair Pre-Treatment

This is how my hair looks when I use the webcam. you can see a lot of purple in there. My color is actually a bit more red in the sunlight, but looks like this without natural light. I went into the store and the saleslady recommended Cyclamen.

Shine Moist Henna Wax Color Treatment in Cyclamen (Container w/ Gloves)
A good thing about the small size product is that it comes with gloves. If you open the container, the wax-to-cream-like product is a bright purple color. I forgot to take pictures and didn't remember until I took the gloves on. Anyway, I used a tinting brush to apply it on my hair in sections. It was a bit messy, so I suggest you line your floor with newspaper, or take out anything you don't want getting stained. I then placed myself under a steamer for 20 minutes before rinsing it off.

Cyclamen and Pre-treatment Hair

Post-treatment Hair

It was difficult to rinse off; As you can see, I missed a spot. My hair turned out a bit darker than expected. :( Though it did still glowed rather nicely in the sun but less girl-on-fire and more girl-drank-wine. It still looked quite nice after a few washes. It looked like this after a few washings:

In some light
But I liked it so much I did it again!

It's definitely a bit darker and more purple than my original color, but it's brings out the best in the original color, I think. It's very flattering! When I wash it out, it ends up a bit darker at the ends for some reason. I'm going to try it in Ruby next, but I think Cyclamen works for me very well.

Sigh. I love my red hair, even if I hate maintenance. I have a lot of this to look forward to; Then I'll have to make the decision on whether to re-dye it once my roots grow out... 


  • Inexpensive compared to a salon visit
  • Makes my hair smooth and shiny
  • Gives a nice glaze
  • Smells nice


  • Super messy, I mean really messy
  • Rubs off when wet - yes, anytime it gets wet
  • Irritates my skin - I break out if I don't rinse it out well (even after the initial wash)


  • Sleep with a towel on your pillowcase if you don't want stains on your sheets
  • Don't let anything touch your hair if it's wet unless you want it to get stained
  • Wash your hair seperately
  • Wash your hands everytime you touch your wet hair

Note: I did this even before the original treatment so the tips may only apply for dyed red hair only


  • For people with red hair, or those with lighter hair who want red-ish purple hair. If you have black hair and want a red tint, I'm not sure how well this will show up.

Buy Again? Yes. Because I have made a commitment to red hair!!!

I may try adding this to my conditioner so I don't have to reapply every other week.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Review: Quizno's + Dakasi

As I am writing this right now, I am trying to drink a Dakasi Bubble Milk Tea. While the servers were cheerful and accomodating - plus points for using forceps to give me tissue - the waiting time was long and the milk tea was very disappointing. They used powdered milk, and boy, did it taste like it. Rather than milk tea, it tasted like a powdered milk drink with pearls. I don't think I'll be able to finish this drink, which is quite a shame as it costs P100. Wish I had bought from Serenitea instead.

On a longer note, I visited Quiznos in Shangri-la Mall!

Quiznos Storefront: Shangri-la

It's a bit small and located at the basement, near the food court, so it's easy to miss if you don't normally stop by that level.

Inside Quiznos: Shangri-la
We came at a slow hour, so it was mostly empty.

Quiznos Sub Sizes
Quiznos' subway sandwiches come in 5", 8", and 11". It's nice to have a visible guide as to how big your order is. Also, they show you their actual bread sizes if you ask. ^^

Ordering at Quiznos
 The menu they've mounted is hard to read. Better read the one on the table.

5" Classic Italian
I ordered a 5" classic Italian for P125- I think. It was much taller than I expected.

5" Classic Italian - Sideways 
And it was really yummy! Unfortunately, it didn't fill up this sloth >.< Wish I got a larger size. I think the 5" is still a snack size. the 8" would be perfect for a meal and 11" for super-hungry times.

Quiznos Trash
Their subs come in these speech bubble shaped trays (I like the fact that you have something to hold on to). You're supposed to drop the contents in the hole after eating and leave tray. Unfortunately, in the Philippines, most people just leave their trays on the tables.

Quiznos Snacks

While I didn't buy any sides, you can buy these as additions to your meal, like in the more familiar Subway. While my sub was delicious, it was a bit pricey - especially since Subway often has promos. I like the subs here more though and will probably eat here again if I have the chance.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Review: Kiehl's 5 Sample Set or the Forehead Diaries 2


So as I said before, I passed by Kiehl's at Shangri-la Mall due to a post I saw over at animetrics. I went into the store and told and NR saleslady that I wanted to try their 5 minute consultation + sample set. The lady made me fill out a form, took two patch(?) tests - one for my forehead and one for my cheeks to tell my skin type - and gave me these five samples:

5 samples + form
 The entire thing took 2 minutes. Store experience: meh.

Now to procede with the review proper...

I originally wanted to post it on facebook for the contest but decided to put it here instead. No big products for me then :'(

In order of application:

Kiehl's Blue Herbal Gel Cleanser (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Blue Herbal Gel Cleanser (Sample Size - Front)

Kiehl's Blue Herbal Gel Cleanser (Sample Size - Back)
Kiehl's Blue Herbal Gel Cleanser (Sample Size - Back)
The active ingredient of this product is 1.5% salicylic acid. It actually has this minty medicinal scent, due to the camphor and menthol, sort of like Salonpas. It's blue, and maybe since I'm scrimping, but it doesn't lather as well as most cleansers. I wouldn't exactly call it a gel because it runs almost like water. I like the "coolness" I smell with this cleanser, but it doesn't feel cool around anywhere except when i hit the sides of my mouth. I like that it doesn't leave my skin feeling dry afterwards - no stinging sensation even with the salicylic acid concentration. This is one of the products I liked in the set.
Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion (Sample Size - Back)
Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion (Sample Size - Back)
I think the water and alcohol are supposed to be the cleaners here? There is some witch hazel, which could help the skin, but it's written after the camphor and menthol. There is also Sodium PCA, which probably keeps it from being too harsh. This one is also blue and smells like Salonpas. This is a liquid, and tends to spill, so I might have lost most of it prematurely (I got only 5 washes :( ). It's not a fault of the product, it's mine and the packaging. But for some reason (and in addition to that), even with my usual application, I end up popping zits when I use this toner, so I'm not really fond of it.

Kiehl's Blue Herbal Moisturizer (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Blue Herbal Moisturizer (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Blue Herbal Moisturizer (Sample Size - Back)
Kiehl's Blue Herbal Moisturizer (Sample Size - Back)
The moisturizer had a milder same camphor - mint scent, but was actually a white-to-blue-grean-cream-to-gel. It absorbed easily into my skin and mattefied it a little bit. I didn't end up looking like an oil slick at noon, which is a plus (then again, my standards are rather low when it comes to moisturizers). While I think this would work as a great day moisturizer - in conjunction with sunblock (because it has salicylic acid!), for my oily skin, I feel that I need something else at night.

Acne Blemish Control Daily Skin- Clearing Treatment (Sample Size - Front)
Acne Blemish Control Daily Skin- Clearing Treatment (Sample Size - Front)
Acne Blemish Control Daily Skin- Clearing Treatment (Sample Size - Back)
Acne Blemish Control Daily Skin- Clearing Treatment (Sample Size - Back)
This was a white cream, and in fact was heaviest on the skin of the 5 samples -it doesn't really sink. Strangely enough, the smell reminds me of playing cards. While it didn't sting me for the first uses, one day, I felt the burn (sting) post-usage once -I used this twice a day before and reduced it to once a day after- and had no problems after that.

Kiehl's Ultra Light Daily UV Defense (Sample Size - Front)
Kiehl's Ultra Light Daily UV Defense (Sample Size - Front)

Kiehl's Ultra Light Daily UV Defense (Sample Size - Back)
Kiehl's Ultra Light Daily UV Defense (Sample Size - Back)
 I can't really write much about this. Why? The sample contained only 1.5 ml. Even with maximum scrimpage (sunblock is something I don't really scrimp on - even if i'm an intermittent user at best), I ended up having just enough for two doses (day use only). This sunblock wasn't greasy and it's formula is thinner than, say, Armada sunblock (but thicker than Kanebo or Shiseido). Because I do like to touch my face, I found that I could still feel it, but it didn't seem to break me out, but that could be due to the treatment.

The Forehead Diaries 2

In the beginning:

Day 0

There was some expected irritation (redness), but it went away very quickly and was less likely after each wash. No new zits the next day though.
Day 1

By Day 3, I had run out of both the toner and the sunblock. You can see that some of the zits have disappeared, some of the bigger ones bled out though. (A different camera was used here, sorry).

Day 3: without flash

With flash, you can see that the acne treatment does leave a bit of a whitish cast:
Day 3: with flash

Then, it began to sting and got a bit red post application. Acne treatment dialled back to once a day after. While I did see some improvement to the older scars in this area, just a bit farther a way, unseen, a new cluster popped up.

Day 4

And finally... on the last day.

Day 6

By this time I only had enough for one last wash and decided to end this round. Also, my pictures need refinement. I'm not sure if this is doing more harm than good because the pics don't really capture the real deal >.< wah. Might have to abort TFD for a while. Sads.

The Final Verdict

Though it did help heal existing pimple scars, it didn't really help prevent new ones from forming, so I wouldn't recommend using these 4? 3? products exclusively. If you had mild acne, these may be enough for you. Sadly, my face is suck.

The Cleanser: I think this would make a nice summer cleanser: It's a nice scent to smell when it's hot. And the non-irritating salicylic acid content is a plus for acne prone skin.

The Toner: Aside from the fact that I liked the smell of camphor-mint, it really didn't do much for me.

The Moisturizer: It was light, and the fact that it was dual purpose (with the same salicylic acid content) makes me think it's a possible day moisturizer.

The Treatment: This is probably a good bet for sensitive acne-prone skin since it doesn't sting or dry when used once a day. However, that probably means you'll probably see its effects only during the long term (whereas twice a day use will irritate your skin).

The Sunblock: What sunblock??

The biggest detriment to Kiehl's purchasing? The price. I'm pretty sure you could get something with salicylic acid for cheaper - but there is a bonus for buying such as scent, packaging, irritation and comedogenicity. If I had the money, I'd probably go for the cleanser and the moisturizer, but until then... goodbye Kiehl's sample!