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Spotlight | Missha x Line Friends 4D Mascara.

Earlier this year, Korean beauty brand Missha teamed up with popular messaging service Line and launched the limited edition Missha x Line Friends makeup line. Their first makeup collaboration, released in January, hit all the right notes and was well-received by consumers. This popularity paved the way for a sequel, and the second season of Missha x Line Friends was launched last March.

Being a sucker for makeup collaborations and a fan of these adorable Line Friends characters, I made it a point to shop for these Missha x Line Friends makeup while I was in Seoul. I got myself a tube of the Flower Bouquet Cleansing Foam, the Magic Cushion (will blog about this later), and this 4D Mascara. 
Missha x Line Friends 4D Mascara.
While I had no problems in getting the first two items, purchasing this mascara proved to be a challenge. The Missha counter at the nearby eMart no longer had this mascara in stock, and so did three of the Missha stores in Myeongdong. Thankfully, one Missha store in the area still had this and the 3D Mascara on display. I bought one of each, and sent the 3D Mascara to my Mum.
Sally 3D Mascara and Brown 4D Mascara.
The 3D Mascara represents Sally the Duck (hence, yellow), while the 4D Mascara represents Brown the Bear. Their packaging is super cute from the get-go, and really, I'd buy this product for the packaging alone. Haha!
Mostly Hangul text written on the tube.
So what's the difference between the two mascaras, you might ask. The 3D Mascara, in case you're wondering, is formulated to lengthen the lashes; the 4D Mascara, on the other hand, has a volumizing effect.
Take note of the 6-month shelf life once you open your tube of mascara.
Printed in black is the mascara's manufacturing date.
Their applicators are shaped differently too, as seen in this illustration. The 3D Mascara has a triangular-shaped applicator, while the 4D Mascara is a square.
3D Mascara vs 4D Mascara.
Here's a closer look at the 4D Mascara's brush and wand.
The wand...
And the brush.
The brush has thick and dense bristles which bolsters and thickens the lashes for more volume.
A closer look at the brush.
Now here's the mascara in action.
Excuse the bare face.
And the even barren eyebrows, lol.
I do have naturally long lashes, and I thank my parents for that, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to add a little more volume to these peepers. :)
With the Missha x Line Friends 4D Mascara.
This mascara does it job, alright. With just one coat, my lashes look thicker and fuller, and a tad longer too. I love how this mascara is highly-pigmented, has no funky, chemical smell, and defines the lashes naturally. It doesn't clump or flake, and can hold up a curl. (Tip: Apply a thicker coat of mascara at the root of your lashes and a lighter one towards the ends. This way, you can keep your lashes curled longer throughout the day). 
Hello, thicker lashes! :)
I also love that it's smudge-proof and waterproof, and can pretty much withstand all that sweating in this hot and humid weather. Oh, and this mascara is reasonably-priced, too. (Or should I say 'was' because this collection has already been discontinued?) I bought mine for just 3300 a won (around Php 140) a pop. Surprisingly cheap, considering that it's a product by Missha. :)


Spotlight | Ever Bilena Matte Two Way Cake.

Seems like there is no end to this unbearably hot and humid Philippine weather. It's supposed to be monsoon season now, but thanks to the oscillation of the ocean-atmosphere system otherwise known as El Nino, looks like it's gonna be summer all-year round.

And to think summer is actually my least favorite season because it's not very makeup-friendly. Imagine - incessant sweating, excessive sebum, extremely oily face that bears semblance to a greased pan. Uggggh, the horror!

I have had my share of these horrific 'greased pan' moments, which isn't exactly the sight you'd want to see when you look in the mirror. Thankfully, our favorite local makeup brand Ever Bilena has a recently released product to solve this makeup woe. And boy, am I glad to be one of those who got first dibs on it! :)
No more 'greased pan' moments with these babies!
Say hello to Ever Bilena's Matte Two Way Cake, a 2-in-1 foundation that gives the skin a flawless, soft matte finish. It covers blemishes, hides skin imperfections, and evens out the skintone. It can be applied wet or dry (hence the name 'two way'), depending on the coverage you desire.
Product description at the back of the box.
The Two Way Cake comes in three different shades: Golden Beige, Fair Oriental, and White Ivory. The product is housed in a sleek black compact, and comes with a sponge and a mirror. 
Shade range.
The packaging reminds me of those old school flip-top phones, like Motorola Razr.
Back view. :)
A closer look at the shades (L-R): White Ivory, Fair Oriental, Golden Beige.
And here's the sponge.
White Ivory is the lightest among the three shades. It looks rather pinkish, which makes it suitable for those with pale/porcelain skin, or fair-skinned individuals with cool undertones.
White Ivory swatched dry on the left, wet on the right.
Fair Oriental, as the name suggests, is suitable for those with fair to medium skin, and those with yellow undertones . Perhaps the most popular shade in the selection (I know at least five people who are using this product with this shade), it's also the shade closest to my skintone.
Fair Oriental swatched dry on the left, wet on the right.
The darkest among the three shades, Golden Beige is perfect for those with olive skin, or in colloquial term, 'morena'.
Golden Beige swatched dry on the left, wet on the right.
Typically, I use this foundation to set either my Missha Signature Wrinkle Filler BB Cream or my Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream. But on extremely hot and humid days such as today, I skip the BB Cream and use this with just my current favorite primer/sunscreen underneath.
Fair Oriental on my face.
True to its claim, this foundation neither feels heavy nor looks cakey on the skin. It's easy to apply, and you can build the coverage from light to medium when worn dry. I have not tried applying it wet, but I suppose this foundation can give you full coverage by doing so.

Now as far as its mattifying power is concerned, it usually depends on the weather, the surrounding temperature, or my activity level. On days when it's hot as hell, my face would become a greaseball in as short as 3 hours; on rainy and refreshingly cooler days, I wouldn't break a sweat and my foundation would stay intact for as long as 5 or 6 hours. Not bad for something worth Php 165, huh?
Products used:
FACE: Beyond Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base,
Ever Bilena Liquid Concealer in Light,
Ever Bilena Two Way Cake in Fair Oriental.
EYES: Shiseido Eyebrow Pencil in Brown,
Clio Kill Black Pen Liner,
Missha The Style 4D Mascara.
CHEEKS: Ever Bilena Cheek Blush in Raisin.
LIPS: Beyond Rich Color Tint Balm in Tok Wine.

If you're planning to give this product a try, why not take advantage of its Php 150 introductory price? Ever Bilena products are easily accessible and available at most beauty counters, drugstores, and supermarkets - no need to scour the high seas just to buy this foundation. And yes, they already have this at Watson's and at SM Department Stores. :)


Sneak Peek | Laneige x Lucky Chouette Collection.

Aaaand we're back to regular programming! In case you failed to notice (but I do hope you did, haha), I have not updated this blog for the past three weeks or so - mostly because August has been a very busy month for me and the rest of my family.

The 'busyness' began when my sister-in-law had dengue and was admitted to the hospital towards the end of the July. She was confined for almost a week, and I had to take care of my niece during her absence.

The day before she was discharged from the hospital, my London-based relatives - my aunt, my uncle, and my cousins - came home for a quick two-week vacation. And since they don't come home very often, we all wanted to spend as much time with them as possible - which means we were almost always out and about, going to places, shopping and stuff.

And then came Yue's first Quarterly Exams, which was last week. Everything else in my life takes a backseat during exam week, as I am mostly preoccupied with writing notes for review and making mock exams for the little man.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand - this long overdue blog update. I've been meaning to get this blog post up since two weeks ago, when the Laneige x Lucky Chouette Pore Control BB Cushion made a cameo on episode 14 of Doctors.
Jin Seo Woo (Lee Sung Kyung) for Laneige. :)
More of the Laneige x Lucky Chouette collection after the jump!


Seoul Searching | Hey, Hongdae!

I fell in love with Hongdae the moment I stepped on the platform of Hongik University Station. The place was bustling with energy, and you'll get a feel of this as soon as you join the throng of people making their way out of exit 9. You'll literally rub elbows with strangers as you ascend the stairs to get to the main street. Take note that we visited on a Saturday, Hongdae's busiest, liveliest, most crowded day of the week.
Hongik University Station.
Once you escape the nightmare that is exit 9, you will be greeted by a warm and youthful, oftentimes artistic vibe. Hongdae, after all, is the home ground of Hongik University - one of the best art institutions in South Korea.
Little man ready to explore Hongdae!
More of our trip to Hongdae after the jump!


Spotlight | Beyond Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base.

When you live in a tropical country such as the Philippines, it feels like summer all year round. Today's weather, for instance, was unbelievably hot and humid (31 degrees, but it felt more like a scorching 39 outside) - to think it's already the rainy season.
Beyond Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base.
And this is exactly the reason why I bought this Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base when I visited Korea last spring. This sun base, which sells for 17000 won (around Php 700 or $14), is part of Beyond Cosmetics' and Disney's Alice in Wonderland collaboration collection.
Lovely illustration on the side panel.
Now I'm all for primers with SPF for three good reasons. Primers, for one, keep your makeup intact and last for an entire day at the most. With the added sun protection factor, you don't have to apply another sunblock to your face. And since I can skip wearing sunblock, I don't have to worry about break-outs or allergies (hello, sensitive skin) or that heavy, greasy feel on my face all throughout the day.
And pretty prints on the other side.
Aside from the sun protection factor - a whopping SPF 50 PA+++ - the packaging is another reason why I purchased this product. Just look at the pretty details! Even the tube itself is pretty, with its frosted pink cap and gold details that give this sun base a very elegant vibe.
The 50 mL tube.
It comes with a screw cap for easy use, and a small nozzle which allows sufficient control on the amount of product being dispensed.
Screw-off cap.
However, both the box and the tube hardly have English text written on it. Save for the name of the product, everything else is written in Hangul.
Back of the box.
Back of the tube.
Now let's take a look at the product itself. 
Just the right amount of the sun base...
The Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base is a lightly-tinted primer that evens out the skin tone as it moisturizes and preps your skin for makeup. It also functions as a sunblock to protect the skin from harmful UV rays.  
... and how it looks like when applied.
This sun base contains red algae extracts known for its antioxidant properties and its ability to neutralize free radicals that can cause damage to the skin in the form of fine lines and wrinkles. It also contains True Eco Complex, which hydrates and brightens the skin.
Left without sun base, right with sun base.
This product has a slightly thicker consistency, similar to that of regular sunblock but without the sticky, greasy feel. I love its lightweight, easy-to-blend formula and its subtle floral scent.
Bare face.
Once applied, it makes the skin look a bit shiny which eventually turns into a nice, glowing finish as it blends into the skin.
With the Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base.
I love how this sun base preps my skin for makeup application. You know those soft focus filters work on photo editing apps?  This product sort of does the same thing, only in real life. And with sun protection, at that!
And all dolled-up! :)
Products used:
FACE: Beyond Alice in Blooming Skin Tone Sun Base,
Missha Wrinkle Filler BB Cream,
Ever Bilena Liquid Concealer in Light,
Peripera Snow White Pride Up Pact.
EYES: Etude House Tint My Eyebrows,
Clio Kill Black Pen Liner,
Tony Moly Simply Style Slim Curling Mascara.
CHEEKS: Ever Bilena Cheek Blush in Raisin.
LIPS: Beyond Rich Color Tint Balm in Tok Wine.

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