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1.31.2014

Globe Telecom launches Anti Text Spam Campaign.

"Pre-selling condo in Global City, Taguig! We offer no DP, 0% interest!"
"Interested in getting a cash loan? Get as much as 500K, no collateral, no cash out easy approval!"
"Congratulations, your sim number won Php 1M! Call this number to claim your prize."
I only like spam if it comes from a can. :)
Sounds familiar? These are but one of the many text messages that I've encountered throughout the years. They're spam messages - unsolicited, come from unfamiliar numbers, and often times annoying.

Is there a way to avoid receiving spam messages like these? Apparently, there is.

Globe Telecom launched a campaign to address continuing proliferation of unsolicited promotional materials sent through short messaging service or text messages, commonly known as text spams, which many subscribers find to be annoying and bothersome.

"To help reduce, if not eliminate, text spams, the telecommunications provider has put in place several channels through which subscribers can report text spams", said Yoly Crisanto, Globe Head of Corporate Communications.

Subscribers may report via the Globe website through Talk2Globe Chat (http://chat.globe.com.ph); send a message through Globe Contact Form (http://globe.com.ph/talk2Globenow) and by tweeting @Talk2GLOBE on Twitter. Subscribers can put in the number, the exact message, and the time and date the text spam was received. "Numbers that are reported to be source of text spams are first sent warnings and those that are persistent source of text spams are deactivated from the service", Crisanto said.

How to block spam messages on your Android device.
While the company takes utmost care in safeguarding data, records and documents gathered in the process of conducting business, subscribers should also take caution in writing down any personal information including mobile phone numbers. “Anyone who has access to numbers can create a database. Collection of numbers can come from registration to events and websites, prepaid loading from sari-sari stores, to text validation of mobile apps, and more. Major sources can be mobile marketing companies, app and web developers, load merchants, private and public establishments as well as through mobile generator programs,” she said.

Globe Telecom also disputes an online report that telcos sell customer numbers to database marketing companies. “Our valued subscribers can rest assured that we treat customer numbers with utmost confidentiality in line with the company’s security policy,” Crisanto emphasized. “We are aware and take note that spam text messages continue to cause inconvenience to many of our subscribers We want to assure our customers that we are committed in our drive against text spams,” she added.
How to block spam messages on your iPhone.
Many subscribers complain of getting an average of 5 to 10 text spams a day. Spam messages are usually sent by prepaid numbers as they are untraceable and are easily disposable. Spammers also don’t need to specific numbers to send spam messages to as they make use of USB GSM modems and they spam number ranges.

The National Telecommunications Commission had previously issued a memorandum circular prohibiting any unauthorized broadcast messaging services. The memorandum provides that any individual or business entity who wants to send broadcast messages needs to register first with the NTC for authorization. Legitimate text blasts approved by the regulating agency are properly identified and do not carry 11-digit numbers.


Join | Love & Beauty Giveaway!

I was supposed to run a giveaway last December to celebrate the second anniversary of this blog. But because of unforeseen circumstances (i.e. my old laptop conking out on me), I was not able to do so. Now allow me to make it up to you, my dear readers, by doing this mini giveaway. It's my first for the year, and hopefully (fingers crossed) I can run a few more giveaways in the months to come.

This giveaway officially kicks off today (January 31) in time for the Lunar New Year, and will end on Valentines Day (February 14). This giveaway is open worldwide, and one winner will receive a Human Heart Nature gift pack with the following items:
Many thanks to Human Heart Nature Laguna for these lovely prizes! :)
1 100% Natural Lip Balm
(Click on the links to read my review of these products!)

As always, we have the good old Rafflecopter for your entries. You earn ten entries by doing all of the mandatory tasks, and you can earn a lot more should you choose to do the optional tasks. I repeat, you have to complete all of the mandatory tasks for your entries to be valid. They're pretty simple, so I'm sure you'll be able to complete all of them without even breaking a sweat. And the more tasks you complete, the more entries you earn, the better your chances of winning. :)

Good luck everyone! And a Happy Lunar New Year to all! 
Gong Xi Fa Cai! Sae Hae Bok Manhi Baduseyo!



1.29.2014

Trend-spotting | Fresh and Simple for Spring 2014.

Natural makeup. Fresh-faced look. Glowing skin. These, according to my favorite fashion magazines, will be all the rage for Spring 2014.

And that may really be the case, as we saw a lot of (almost) bare-faced beauties walk down the runway of New York Fashion Week. Also, the likes of Heidi Klum, Reese Witherspoon, and Naomi Watts turned heads while sporting the 'au naturel' look - flushed cheeks, peachy lips, healthy-looking skin -  in the recently-concluded Golden Globe Awards.

Aside from the 'no makeup' makeup look, fashion and makeup experts at Elle and Allure also say that pastel eyeshadows, and red and orange lip colors will also be popular this year. And judging by MAC's soon-to-be released Fantasy of Flowers collection, I guess they were right on the money.

Now as for our beloved Korean makeup brands, they too, have their makeup/cosmetics collections all set for the change of the season. And here are some of them.

Pure Radiant Blush #4 Coral Blossom, Serum Intense Lipstick YR329 Peach Flash,
Pure Radiant Shadow #2 Shiny Gold.
Laneige's 2014 Color Makeup Series is all about achieving 'natural Korean beauty' with its comprehensive range of eyeshadows, blushes, and lipsticks. This collection features 7 eyeshadow palettes, 6 blushes, and 20 vivid lip colors.
Pure Radiant Blush #6 Natural Shading, Serum Intense Lipstick R12 Luminous Red,
Pure Radiant Shadow #6, Classy Mood.
Fun and playful is what best describes Etude House's Color Lipsfit, which was released today (January 29) in Korea. There are seven different variants in this new collection, each with vivid colors and 'weightless' feel on the lips.
RD 301 Perfect Red, OR201 Coral Dream.
Sulli and Krystal for Etude House.
Earlier this month, Innisfree also released a new line of lip colors, which they call Tint Lip Mousse. They're 'lipsticks with mousse-like formulation' according to the Innisfree website. Simply put, they're lip creams with rich colors and velvety, matte finish.
Tint Lip Mousse.

I have yet to see what the other Korean makeup brands (The Face Shop, Tony Moly, Missha) have in store for this year. So far, I've only seen teasers of their up and coming skincare products on their social media pages. I'm pretty sure they'll be releasing new makeup products soon, and once I get first dibs, expect me to share the good news with you. :)

1.27.2014

Spotlight | The Face Shop Green Tea Phyto Powder in Lip & Eye Makeup Remover.

After emptying my current bottle of makeup remover, I decided to visit The Face Shop here in SM San Pablo (oh yes, we have TFS here in the boondocks lol!) to see if they have a makeup remover that will perform just as good as the brand I previously had. I saw at least four different kinds of makeup remover in stock, but I settled for the Green Tea Phyto Powder for two reasons: 1) I like green tea, and 2) it's the cheapest among the bunch. Haha.
The Face Shop Green Tea Phyto Powder in Lip & Eye Makeup Remover.
Here's a brief description of the product, which you can read directly from the bottle.
"A lip and eye makeup remover with green tea which mildly and thoroughly removes super strong, water-proof makeup on sensitive skin around the eyes and lips without any stickiness or oiliness." 
Hooray for English text!
You know I'm a huge fan of waterproof mascara. (I actually wouldn't wear a mascara if it's not waterproof.) And this kind of makeup remover seems right up my alley. Plus it contains green tea, which protects the skin from sun damage and slows down skin aging.
Hangul at the back.
It has a dual-phase formula (much like my FOA Makeup Remover), so you have to shake it fully before you use it.
Dual-phase formula.
Apply a few drops on a cotton pad and place it on parts to be cleansed. Leave it on for a moment before you wipe it off. Then rinse with lukewarm water afterwards.
Comes with an easy-twist cap.
True enough, this product removes makeup pretty well. Even my hard-to-remove Fairy Drops mascara was no match for this cleanser. So yeah, taking off all that gunk on your face is just a breeze with this baby.
All that gunk on my face. :)
Don't expect it to smell like Elizabeth Arden's Green Tea, though. (Which I did. I was expecting a whiff of that oh-so-familiar green tea scent as soon as I opened the cap, but alas, there was none. Lol.) This product is fragrance-free, which is great for those who dislike overly-scented skincare products. 

What I love:
- Gentle formulation.
- Non-greasy.
- Non-drying.
- Safe for sensitive skin.
- Removes even the most stubborn, waterproof mascara.
- Affordable price - Php 325 (around $7) for a 100mL bottle.

What you might not like:
- None that I can think of. :)

Thinking of giving this product a try? Check out this list of The Face Shop branches to see if there's a store near you.

1.25.2014

Foodie Goodie | Adobo with Lemon Zest and Peanut Butter.

Posted this photo on my Instagram last weekend, and since then I've been receiving requests for the recipe. Now for my foreign friends who may not be familiar with the name 'adobo', it's a popular Filipino dish cooked in soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic.

There are many different ways to cook adobo. Some use pork, others prefer to use chicken, or a combination of both. And then there are some who like their adobo with chicken gizzard and liver. (I don't, though. Haha!) There's a version of adobo that uses annatto, there's one that uses yellow ginger, and yet another that uses coconut milk.

My version, however, uses lemon zest (instead of the usual vinegar) and peanut butter. And because you asked for it, here it is - my very own version of adobo, with a twist. :)

Adobo with Lemon Zest and Peanut Butter.

Ingredients:
500 grams chicken breast (or pork cubes), cut into pieces
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 pcs dried bay leaves
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp lemon zest
1 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tsp black peppercorns
2 Tbsp vegetable oil

Procedure:
1. Marinate chicken in soy sauce, lemon juice, bay leaves, and garlic for thirty minutes. Drain the meat, and set the marinade aside.
2. Add the oil in a large frying pan. Saute the chicken until the sides turn brown.
3. Add the marinade, lemon zest and peppercorns.
4. Simmer for about 15 minutes. Add water if necessary.
5. Add the peanut butter, mix it well. Simmer for another five minutes.
6. Remove from heat, and serve with rice.

Tip:
Zest the lemon using a grater.

Shared with Food Friday and Food Trip Friday.

1.24.2014

Occasional Furniture for the Modern Home.

Occasional furniture is often considered dated, which is why so many modern households avoid buying this style of furniture. However, if you take the time to shop around, there are many modern pieces that will look excellent. This style of furniture is often smaller, and can be used to accessories a room.

You should choose pieces of occasional furniture that can be moved easily, and used when needed in each room. These items are typically coffee tables, and side tables that can be used when extra guests arrive. Choosing the right piece is essential, and can make a massive difference to the way the room feels, and if you choose badly the item will look out of place.
Tray Table.
Every item of occasional furniture that you choose should enhance the style of the room, and change a standard room to a magnificent area. Therefore, choosing the best store is essential and is why more people are choosing high end furniture. Online stores such as French Connection are ideal as they provide choice and style at an affordable price.

The occasional furniture is modern, stylish and will look incredible in every home, regardless of age. Alongside coffee tables, you may want to consider ottomans, rocking chairs, and wine racks, which can help your room to look amazing. Regardless of the items that you want in the room, they must be high quality. 

Rocking chairs and ottomans may seem old fashioned, but in the correct setting they will look brilliant, and often in contrast to a modern sleek appearance. If possible choose pieces of furniture that have dual functions such as an ottoman for sitting and storage. You and your home will benefit from these multi functional pieces of occasional furniture.


Side tables have become more fashionable, and people are realising that they are a perfect addition to every home. Whether you want to use the table for places decorative items on or practically at the end of a sofa, they are one of the best pieces to choose. You need to ensure that every item is functional and looks excellent.

Shopping for furniture should be fun, and there are so many different places that you can shop in that the choice is overwhelming. However, shopping online has become a popular choice as you can choose the occasional furniture from the comfort of your home. Once the items are ordered, you can sit back and wait for them to be delivered.

When the occasional furniture arrives, you can spend time adjusting where it will go, and decide on the best place in the room. The beauty if these items are that you can move them regularly, and refresh the way that the room looks and feels. There are no rules when it comes to interior design, and you should choose a style that you love.

This article is sponsored by Spreaditfast.

1.23.2014

Nailed It! | Etude House Shining Dream Twinkle Nails.

So I just realized that it's been almost a year since my last nail polish blog post. Wha-at?! I can't believe that I took for granted all those pretty nail polishes that I've worn in the past. They never got featured in my blog, despite the countless #NOTD posts (that's Nail of the Day) on my Instagram. My bad.

While tinkering with a new set of nail polish yesterday, I made a mental note to take decent photos of the nail polish (not just my nails) and post them here in my blog. And without further ado, I present you the Shining Dream Twinkle Nails from Etude House. This was included in the loot that I received from Etude House Philippines last Christmas.
Shining Dream Twinkle Nails.
 As always, Etude House does not fall short when it comes to visuals and packaging. I can't help but feel cheery and festive just by looking at this house-shaped box. Feels a lot like Christmas, right? :)
L-R: Holy White, Holy Deep Blue, Holy Silver Pearl.
There are actually two different sets in the Shining Dream Twinkle Nails line. This is set 02 Holy Twinkle, which consists of the following colors: 2-1 Holy White, a frosted pearly white shade; 2-2 Holy Deep Blue, an 'electric' shade of blue with fine iridescent glitters; 2-3 Holy Silver Pearl, a clear nail polish with silver stars and holographic sparkles.
Yay for the labels! :)
The set also comes with a sheet of nail decals. As you can see, there a lot of stickers to choose from, each with very intricate designs. I'm not a pro when it comes to nail art, but just by looking at these silver stickers, I can tell that they'll create a lovely contrast with the blue nail polish.
Snowflakes, and then some.
Now here's the look I created using the Holy Twinkle set. I didn't use the decals, because like I've said, my nail art skills leaves much to be desired. Haha!
Winter vibe! :)
Snowflake, snowflake, I love snowflake...
If you're into nail art, and love frosted nail polish as much as I do, then I bet you'll enjoy working with this set. You can mix and match the colors and create a variety of looks with the decals. The polishes are glossy and highly pigmented, and they dry pretty fast, too. Not sure if they're easy to remove though, because I haven't tried taking mine off yet. Haha! :)

The Shining Dream Twinkle Nails set sells for Php 348 (around $8), available at Etude House branches nationwide.

1.20.2014

Spotlight | Tony Moly Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint.

Not too long ago, I purchased this bottle of Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint from Tony Moly. It's the upgraded version of the good old Tony Tint, which I have heralded as 'the best liquid blush' in one of my earlier blog posts. The 'upgraded' version takes the spotlight on my blog today, as I want to show you a different shade plus the new packaging, and how I use it to create the 'gradient effect' on my lips.
Meow! Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint!
Here's how the Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint looks like. The cat-face twist up cap (complete with cat ears) sure adds cuteness to this otherwise ordinary plastic bottle. For reference, here's how the old packaging looks like. Aside from the kitty head, you'll notice that the new bottle has a wider and rounder base. Kinda looks like a cat sitting up straight.
Old vs new. 
I also went for a different shade this time around. Instead of my usual #1 Cherry Pink, I chose #2 Red
#2 Red.
It's a vivid shade of red - almost blood-like, that looks quite intimidating when you look straight at the bottle. It comes with a doe-foot applicator that's rather flat in shape and has a rounded, not pointed, tip. I also noticed that this one has a mild rosy scent, whereas its predecessor had none. (In other words, the old one is unscented.)
Doe-foot applicator.
Now here's how the product looks like when swatched on the skin.
Bloody red! :)
It's a liquid tint so expect the formulation to be watery, but surprise! It's not runny, as you can see in the swatch above. The color is buildable, and the pigmentation is just crazy! And I mean that in a positive way. Just a few dots would be enough to produce a vibrant color on your lips or cheeks. A word of caution, though. This product dries pretty fast, so if you're planning to use it on your cheeks, be sure to blend as quickly as possible. Otherwise, you'll get red dots on your face, haha. :)

Here's how the Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint looks like when worn. The color on my cheeks lasted the entire day; on my lips it lasted for about four to five hours with a bit of eating and drinking.
Flushed, rosy color on my cheeks.
'Just-bitten' gradient lips.
Products used:
FACE: The Face Shop Velvet Skin Primer, Tony Moly Luminous Goddess Aura BB Cream,
Missha Under Eye Brightener, Etude House Any Cushion.
EYES: BYS Waterproof Eyeliner, Majolica Majorca Lash King Mascara,
Ever Bilena Eyebrow Liner.
CHEEKS: Tony Moly Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint.
LIPS: EOS Lip Balm in Vanilla Nonsense, NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Milan,
Tony Moly Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint, MAC Clear Lip Gel.
What I love:
- Cute packaging.
- Highly pigmented.
- Buildable color.
- Just a little goes a long way.
- Long-lasting.
- Can be used on the cheek and lips.
- Affordable price. (Php 248 for this 10ml bottle.)

What you might not like:
- It dries quickly, so you have to blend it as quickly as possible.
- If you're using this as a cheek tint, expect stains on your fingers.

And as promised, here's a quick tutorial on how to achieve the 'gradient lips'. Click on the image to enlarge!
1. Moisturize your lips with a lip balm.
2. Apply pink lipstick on the outer part of your lips.
3. Dot the lip tint on the center of your lips.
4. Smooth with a clear lip gloss.

At this point, I can still say that regardless of the new packaging and seemingly new formulation, Tony Moly's (as in this Cat Chu Wink Tony Tint) is still the best liquid blush for me. And it's also my favorite lip tint to work with when it comes to creating gradient lips!

1.17.2014

Foodie Goodie | Kongnamul Guk (Korean Bean Sprout Soup).

It's 21°C outside, and boy, it sure is chilly. Times like this call for a hot cup of cocoa (complete with marshmallows, hehe) or better yet, a piping hot bowl of soup.

I've been craving for Kongnamul Guk (bean sprout soup) since the other day, but since there's no Korean restaurant within my area, I decided to just learn the recipe and cook it myself. I'm sharing the recipe below, in case you'd like to give this dish a try. It's very easy to make, and the ingredients don't cost that much (they're quite cheap, really). This healthy dish is low in calories and packed with vitamin C. It's great for hang-overs, and when added with the chili flakes, makes a good cure for colds as well.


Kongnamul Guk

Ingredients:
3 cups soybean sprouts
6 cups water
15 pieces dried anchovies
2 tsp garlic, minced
3 Tbsp green onions, chopped
2 tsp salt
1 piece kelp, dried
1 Tbsp gochukaru/red chili pepper flakes (optional)

Procedure:
1. Wash the soybean sprouts. Be sure to remove any spoiled tails (those that are brown in color), and drain them afterwards.
2. In a pot, boil the water on high heat. Add the anchovies and kelp in a strainer, and submerge it into the boiling water.
3. Let it boil with a lid on medium heat for 15 minutes. Skim off the foams. Remove anchovies and kelp from the broth.
4. Add the soybean sprouts into the broth. Boil with a lid on high heat for 10 minutes. Make sure to boil the bean sprouts with a lid. Otherwise it can result in a slightly unpleasant smell.
5. Add the garlic, chopped green onion, and red chili pepper flakes. Let it boil for 1-2 minutes.
6. Season with salt. You may choose to add more, so season it gradually while tasting the soup.
7. Turn off the heat, and serve in a bowl.

Shared with Food Friday and Food Trip Friday.


Sinulog 2014 goes digital with Globe Telecom.

If you're in Cebu right now to join the festivities of the annual Sinulog Festival, I have some great news for you!

With the advent of digital technology, Globe Telecom makes its presence felt at the Sinulog Festival in Cebu from January 16-19, 2014 by harnessing social media to showcase the vibrant and lively celebration to the rest of the world.

This year, the leading telecommunications company turns to social networking sites Instagram and Twitter to engage locals and tourists participating in one of the country’s biggest and most attended festivals with a photo submission contest.

To join the contest, Sinulog attendees should capture and upload photos taken from the Globe Neon Carnival on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtags #Wonderful2014 and #GlobeSinulog2014. The photos must tell the story of “Globe creating a wonderful world of festivals and celebrations at the Sinulog 2014”. 

Five winners of Globe prepaid load cards plus 1 grand winner of P5,000 worth of prizes from Globe Telecom’s mass market brand TM will be awarded daily during the 4-day event.

Located at Block 11 Cebu IT Park, Apas in Cebu City, the Globe Neon Carnival is a village-like attraction that houses the Globe Mobility Store-on-the-Go, a one-stop shop showcasing the telco’s line-up of prepaid, postpaid and Tattoo broadband offers as well as exclusive Sinulog deals for subscribers to enjoy.
Follow me on Instagram! :)
Aside from the roving Globe Store, the Globe Neon Carnival also features food carts and drinks stations, interactive game booths, and exciting prizes for lucky locals and tourists. Entertainment acts from blacklight dancers, local bands, and local and international DJs are expected to provide the fanfare at the event.

One of the highlights of the Globe Neon Carnival is the “Kaloka-like” contest, a concept that originated from a noontime show open to the public. Participants are to showcase their looks and talents to convince the crowd and the judges that they deserve to win the title. Three (3) celebrities composed of an international singer, a primetime TV queen, and a men’s magazine model will form the panel of judges.

In addition, a daily raffle will be open to subscribers who will avail of Globe Prepaid, Postpaid and Tattoo offers, with exciting prizes such as tablets, handsets, and gift certificates from partner-establishments.

“We invite both the locals and tourists attending the Sinulog Festival to ready their smartphones and take photos from the Globe Neon Carnival to be part of this year’s biggest Sinulog social media craze courtesy of Globe as we experience a brand new Globe network in Cebu. With a quick snapshot of the energy-filled festival celebration in Cebu, you can win prizes by showing to the whole world, via social media, that it’s really more fun in the Philippines,” said Globe Retail Transformation and Management Head Joe Caliro.

Open daily from 4:00PM until the wee hours of the morning the next day, the four-day event is open to the public for free but Globe subscribers will be greeted with a slew of food treats and freebies upon entry.

To know more about #GlobeSinulog2014, follow @enjoyGLOBE on Twitter and like Globe Telecom on Facebook at www.facebook.com/globeph.

1.14.2014