Thursday, February 4, 2016

January Favourites

I didn't write on my December Favourites because I didn't find anything new I wanted to talk about! It was a month of studying so I just stayed in most days and I was damn sure my December Favourites wasn't gonna be on applied economics.

We're already one month in for 2016 and instead of reminiscing on how time flies (TIME FLIESS!!!), I'll just list the things I loved in the month of January. 


1. Keeping a diary


My resolution this year was to write more in a diary. I realised I didn't really remember much of 2015 and although there were lots of great things that happened, I didn't really take note of it and I have horrible memory so 2015 seemed like a blur. And it shouldn't be! Not in my early 20s!! 

I'm quite pleased that I've maintained a blog from when I was 14 because atleast I have this place to read back later when I'm older. I wouldn't have remembered HALF the things if it weren't for my blog. It's kinda like a photo album, come to think of it. Except that instead of a photo that tells a thousand words, it is actually just thousands of words.

I bought my diary at Paperchase and I was just really attracted to the cover of it. There isn't much space inside to write long-winded entries (as I used to!) which is actually really great, because I won't tend to go off on a tangent as I usually would. I've written really plain things like what I did that day and where I went and what I bought and the occasional rants. So far, so good! I'm hoping to keep this consistency going til the end of this year. 

(Julian, thank you very much for buying me a diary (hot pink, no less!), but since I already have my own, I'll use yours for something else really special regardless!)


2. NARS' Dolce Vita blusher


Yes, guys. I did it. I actually went out to buy myself a blusher. Amazing.

The only one time I've had a blusher in my make-up collection was a hand-me-down from my Mum and it was by Dior and the colour was absolutely stunning. So rosy and instead of it being really just ashy pink, it was a very dark tone (almost **almost** like a bronzer) red and so you'd use it very sparingly but it provided the face with just the right amounts of warmth. I have no idea where it has gone to and I've tried to find a dupe but nothing really comes close...

... 'cept for this!

I loved the Dolce Vita lip pencil and it's still one of my favourite lip colours ever but it's constantly sold out everywhere that I've just plainly given up on buying it already. The blush is so pretty and it's described as a 'matte dusty pink' and I very lightly tap on it with a kabuki brush and pat pat it on my cheeks. As with all NARS' products, it is so pigmented so a heavy hand with the brush is not recommended. I'm very into the 'barely there make-up' and this blusher does it for me. It can be strong if you wish to apply it heavy but I rather just use it to create a more natural flushed cheeks look.  It gives me an instant rosy glow and I look way healthier and less pale and flat and it really contributes to the overall look of your everyday make-up.

(Also, if you're interested in reading make-up reviews, my friend started a beauty blog where she curates her favourite make-up finds, just a heads up that they are all quite high-end luxury stuff so if you're into that, she writes about them pretty damn well!)


3. 'The Little Book of Skin Care' by Charlotte Cho


I first found out about this book through Jenn Im's (of Clothes Encounters) monthly favourites video. And I bought it almost immediately after watching said video. 

Charlotte Cho is the co-founder of Soko Glam - a website dedicated on selling personally curated Korean skincare and make-up products for Stateside customers. She saw a lack of access on buying Korean skincare products in America so she basically acts as a medium between Korean supplies and American customers. She also runs a blog on the Soko Glam website which is where I constantly referred to when I committed on changing my skincare routine.

The book is a very easy read about her background and how she stumbled into the revolutionary sphere of Korean skincare. She was raised in the US and in this first few chapters of this book, she explains how her move to Korea for work basically changed her life. 

Charlotte is a trained aesthetician so this book very lightly dives into the science behind skincare in SoKo as well as the history and the culture of Korean women to give you a better understanding of how and why it works. It's so fascinating, really! I loved it loads that I even bought my sister a copy as well.

If you're curious as to what's in it, I'll tell you a few important and interesting points I found from this book
  • Sunscreen is the most important step for Koreans; both women and men. They've been using it since young which explains how they really have no signs of aging nor do they have any discolouration and dark spots. Charlotte stresses on the importance of sunscreen so much that she wrote a whole chapter on it. To show you how important it is to protect your face from the sun, read this! It's a true story about a guy who spent 28 years of driving a truck without wearing sunscreen, exposing the left side of his face to the sun through the driver's side window. Also, for future references; SPF 15 blocks 93-95% of UVB rays, SPF 30 blocks 97% of UVB rays, SPF 50 blocks 98% of UVB rays and SPF 100 blocks UVB rays to 99%. 
  • Find yourself a sunscreen that contains both UVA and UVB (The 'A' in UVA stands for aging ray and has a long wavelength which basically means it permeates into the dermis and the 'B' in UVB stands for burning and has a shorter wavelength than the UVA ray and it penetrates the skin more superficially). 
  • Essences are what Koreans consider to be the most effective part of the skincare. Get a good one! 
  • Koreans stay away from powders. No one wears matte coverage there. And I've been there and it's true, they even sell (healthy, good for your skin) oil tints and mists for the skin so that your skin looks as glowy all day long. 
  • Korea has the highest per capita rate of cosmetic surgeries in the world. And who goes there the most? Chinese and Malaysians.
  • As a rate of comparison, skin care accounts of about 20% of the beauty market in the US where else in Korea, it's around the 50% mark which just shows how much the Koreans care for their skin. Where an American might typically look to buy products that 'fix', Koreans look for products that 'prevents'. 
She even writes a little about Seoul city and wrote her favourite places to hang out and eat and shop which should serve as an ideal itinerary for anyone looking to go there for travels! I, too, highly recommend Seoul! Wonderful, wonderful place.


4. Cropped Flare Jeans


There is MORE to life than skinny jeans, guys!

I never thought I could pull of anything other than just a pair of skinnies but I decided the other day that I'm going to just go ahead and try new jean shapes and silhouettes.

I bought myself a pair of MOM jeans the other day and loved how it's perfectly cuffed so it doesn't just seem really baggy and disproportionate to your height. It looks great with any pair of shoes and any pair of jeans. I just really love also that because it's not tight around your thighs, you can wear a pair of thermal leggings without looking like you're going to burst out of your skinny jeans.

And just recently, I bought myself a pair of cropped flare jeans. Every time I purchase a new pair of jeans, it becomes my new favourite. This cropped flare jeans do come pretty short so whether you like it or not depends on your tolerance for the cold weather. Conversely, in hot countries, this should serve as a better alternative to tight skinny jeans. But I'm just digging the flare and the awkward length! It's like the better millennial version of the bell-bottomed jeans. You can dress it up and down and you just look really put-together. I tried it out with a pair of strappy kitten heels and it worked and then I tried it out with a pair of trainers and it still worked. I'm a new fan.


5. Roshe Run's


Did it. Bought it.

I finished classes one day and saw that it was raining heavily and my boots were soaked. I had a runny nose that day and so I was already frustrated with the world and I had enough with my lousy pair of boots. 

So I went to the city, to JD Sports and tried out the Roshe Runs and asked for my size (I'm a 3 and a half and um I didn't know they ran half sizes?!?!?! What is this new world I'm living in...) and happily brought it home.

Been wearing it everywhere I go now. I was a bit doubtful because the material seemed very thin and it didn't really seem waterproof but many rainy days after, I can tell you it holds up pretty strong. Atleast better than my boots. I love it! It's so light and so comfortable to wear. I get why people wear trainers everywhere.

I bought an all-black one because I wanted it to be very versatile for everyday use and to match with every outfit. I absolutely ~ l o v e ~ it. I didn't realise how heavy boots were til I got these babies! Man, all my time in the UK wearing boots when I could've just been COMFORTABLE. 


6. Music


Besides songs by Kehlani, I've been replaying Richard Marx's 'Right Here Waiting' and Whitney Houston's 'All The Man I Need'. 

The prior was used in Reply 1988 (are you already rolling your eyes as far back to Jupiter yet? I know, I know, even I ask myself sometimes will I ever move on? Answer is 'no, not yet' so let me bask in the post-drama sadness and heartbreak) and it was always played during significant moments so whenever I listen to it, my heart can't decide whether it should break or sing in rejoice. Obviously I've heard of this song prior to Reply 1988 but the show just made me really, really love and appreciate the song. 

And every time Whitney's song comes on, I just break into full karaoke mode (good thing my housemates are hardly home) and pretend I'm somewhat good at singing. I've always been a fan of Whitney's other songs but this one has closely become one of my favourites by her.



Witty, funny and really, really articulate writing wins me over all the time. Leandra Medine has always been center of attention during fashion weeks and idolised by fashionistas all over the world but she has such a charm to her that I'm so attracted to.

She is so well-dressed without going too far? I mean, I appreciate people who are a lot more expressive when it comes to their dressing and I really adore their risk-taking choices but they're not always my cup of tea. I love how Leandra's choices of fashion are simple but at the same time bold. And she has such a bad-ass attitude to to life and it's really quite awe-inspiring to see how that is effortlessly reflected into her fashion style.

Man Repeller offers such a fresh take on fashion and produces content that are funny and light-hearted yet still current and relatable. I've been reading her articles all the time now and am always looking out for new ones. They're light and easy reads and they're fun to just occupy your time with. 

There was one article which I particularly loved and it's about how life is never going to be clean cut and perfect and clothes and shoes and bags are there to live through the fun with you. I have friends who are very particular about their clothes (musn't stretch and musn't stain and musn't be brought out nor worn) and things (I knew somebody who read their books by opening the book open very very slightly as to not have the spine of the book cracked and wrinkly). I don't know about you but I love having my things well-lived. I love seeing books used and wrinkled and folded here and there. I've always stretched my books open and never cared to use bookmarks. Shows that they were well-loved.

Same goes with clothes. What's the use really of having them all stored inside when they're meant to be worn lovingly. Being so cautious with your things can be suffocating to always have to take care of and what are things if not to be enjoyed and have fun with. Yes, be careful with them and take care of them and make sure they're always pretty and 'on-point' (I don't know if I like that term still) but not to the point that they don't see light of day. 

There was that bit in the article that I loved especially;

" No matter what we do, our tangible relationship with what we wear can result in a bit of messiness. Beer spills on suede shows, lipstick smears on shirt collars, button pop off cherished cardigans, and eating a burrito for lunch makes you look slightly preggo in your high waist jeans. 

But dammit, that burrito was probably delicious. That party was probably fun, that smooch was likely worth it. 'Joie de vivre' exists whether dressed or not - so why not go all out?

Consider stains evidence of a life well-lived in clothes well-loved. "

So that's my January favourites all done and typed out!

My February resolution is to not shop (notice how I chose the shortest month for this...) and to cut out chocolates and soda.


I'll let you know how I'm doing mid-month hahah


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