Saturday, December 29, 2007

some perfume sampling

Narciso Rodriguez For Her - thumbs up. Dense, sweet.
Hanae Mori pour Homme - thumbs up. Dense, sweet-ish. Quite like this.
Yves Saint Laurent Nu - thumbs up so far. A bit lighter than the above two.

Molinard Gardenia - undecided. Seemed to have a bit of gardenia, but not very buttery at all.

Lanvin Arpege - thumbs down. Doesn't really go where I want it to go.

I also sampled Annick Goutal Songes in the dept. store - I am unable to properly appreciate the Goutals at the moment.

Hermes Hermessences Rose Ikebana and Vetiver Tonka - two thumbs up. I really like both of these. I am going to need to buy decants. They were perfection. The coffee in Vetiver Tonka wasn't overbearing at all, nor was the Vetiver. Love. I need to retry the Osmanthe Yunnan, of which I had a good first impression. The only one I definitely do not want to wear (for long periods of time) is Ambre Narguile - very lovely but a bit too gourmand for my taste. I have not gotten around to trying Paprika Brasil.

Quite enjoyed my sniff of L'Occitane's Eau d'Iparie. I would like a decant.

I also liked Shiseido's We're, so I will test it on skin again the next time I pass a Shiseido store.

Friday, December 21, 2007

nothing wrong with taking your time

An excellent column about the strangely harsh treatment of Jessica Simpson in the media: Since when is Jessica Simpson a Spinster?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Japanese Powder Foundations part 2

Revue Superior Stay Pact UV SPF 25, PA++ (a brand of Kanebo, made in Japan)
* Good coverage, but less than natural finish. Surprisingly bad finish, actually. Perhaps it was my application method? I'll try it with a sponge.

Maquillage Climax Lasting Powdery UV SP 25, PA++ (a brand of Shiseido, made in Japan, spring and summer foundation)
** Good coverage and normal finish. Unchanged impression from last time.

Paul & Joe Protective Dual Powder Foundation SPF 25, PA++

* Moderate coverage with a rather natural finish. I rather liked this, but I would like a bit more coverage. Not particularly impressive with oil-control.

Elixir Superieur Whitening Compact UV SPF 26, PA+++ (a brand of Shiseido, made in Japan, all seasons foundation)
** Good coverage and normal finish. I can't really detect any difference between Elixir and Maquillage yet.

None of the foundations that I've tried has been particularly good with oil control. Elixir might have been okay, but it could have been my imagination.

Still to review:

Dr. Ci:Labo Compact Foundation SPF 16 PA++

Friday, October 12, 2007

Japanese Powder Foundations

I've received various powder foundation samples from shops and friends (mostly from friends) and I've finally gotten around to testing them out properly. At first I was reluctant to wear the samples in public as most of the shades don't match me well, but I figure that one day in the wrong foundation shade isn't going to affect me much.

Doltier Selective Powdery (a brand of Kanebo, made in Japan)
*** Very natural finish, but only provides light coverage. It seems average on oil-control, although I didn't pay that much attention.

Maybelline Angel Fit Pact
(made in China)
** It fits seamlessly with my skin, but despite that the finish isn't quite as natural as Doltier. It only provides light coverage. The sample package is the most space-effective one though. This foundation was supposedly developed for either the Japanese market or the Asian market, I don't remember which.

Ayura Superior Skin Pact SPF20, PA++
(made in Japan)
* Not much coverage, and an average finish. Not particularly natural, and normal about oil-control.

I've tried the above foundations for two days each. I rotated through twice. The following foundations remain to be tested for this second round:

Revue Superior Stay Pact UV SPF 25, PA++ (a brand of Kanebo, made in Japan)
* From what I recall, it was okay. Revue foundations seem very popular here.

Paul & Joe Protective Dual Powder Foundation SPF 25, PA++

* very cute sample packaging, I was unimpressed on my first try, but the color was really off.

Dr. Ci:Labo Compact Foundation SPF 16 PA++
* Good coverage and average finish. I liked the fact that the sample package contains 3 colors for you to try.

Elixir Superieur Whitening Compact UV SPF 26, PA+++ (a brand of Shiseido, made in Japan, all seasons foundation)
*** Good coverage, average finish, average oil-control. I don't want to like this one, as I expect it is quite expensive. Elixir skin care is on the costly side.

Maquillage Climax Lasting Powdery UV SP 25, PA++ (a brand of Shiseido, made in Japan, spring and summer foundation)
*** Good coverage, average finish, average oil-control. Amusing name, eh?

Of course, I should just be using up my Inoui ID foundation instead of buying another one, but liquid foundation just takes too much time.

Friday, September 14, 2007

h&s hair care

I'll say it now. I'm going to buy h&s's introductory set of shampoo, conditioner and treatment primarily because Tomoko Yamaguchi is the spokesperson for it. Actually, I only want to buy the treatment, but the set is cheaper so I'm going to get it all.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

En Vogue - Free Your Mind

Still a perfect video. Great stuff. Is it me or are a lot of the pop videos today really simplistic?

The Fugees are still one of the best groups ever. And Lauryn Hill is the bomb.
Lucy Pearl was pretty cool too. I love Dawn Robinson's vocals.

A top artists list would have to include:
Michael Jackson
The Beatles

Listening to one of Prince's older songs is fascinating because it's just a level of complexity and depth above a lot of the popular stuff today.

I have an ongoing theory that the very best, transcendent musicians are a little weird. They have to be, in order to make music that cuts through all the polite facades of the "normal" world. Popular music works with and/or maintains the niceties of popular culture, but music that remains listen-able over time holds a bit of truth that never gets old.

Friday, September 07, 2007

talib kweli

When's the last time you heard "Reaganomics" in a song? Talib Kweli rocks. Listen to the song "Say Something" (the second song on the player).

Thursday, August 23, 2007


The girl in this picture looks fantastic. This fellow looks pretty good too, but I don't wish I looked like him. Heh.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Gotsta Go

I'm really enjoying Kelly Rowland's song Gotsta Go from her new album. Her live performance at MTV Japan sounds much better than the album version, which apparently isn't on the U.S. version.

Friday, August 03, 2007

as old as my tongue

A curiously poetic title for a documentary about Bi Kidude, a Zanzibar singer perhaps 100 years old. Afrobella has the coolest info.

Monday, July 09, 2007

outstanding music albums

I mean albums that are perfection in their entirety. They're still as strong and original today as when I first heard them years ago. I started making a list. It's a personal list, as I've only heard a fraction of the music out there (I wonder what fraction, heh).

Of the top of my head:
  • Lauryn Hill: The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill - At first, I didn't really like many of the songs on this album, although I could tell that it was good. 10 years or so later I've realized that there is no flaw on this album. Magnificent.
  • Tori Amos: Little Earthquakes - a beautiful album that still resonates with me today.
  • The Cranberries: No Need to Argue - this captured my college angst (although it was much lighter than angst). I still love it. Speaking of which, I need to check out O'Riordan's new album.
I'm not sure about these albums:
  • U2 - the Joshua Tree - I actually don't own this one so I can't judge it.
  • Sarah McLachlan - Fumbling Towards Ecstasy - I loved this album, but it doesn't hold much for me now.
edit: I changed the title of this post because I was misusing the word "seminal."

Sunday, July 08, 2007

All my lipsticks are from different makeup lines

All except two lipsticks, actually. This has the advantage that I don't need to read the label to know what color is inside. Very convenient, now that I think about it. I will continue this fortuitous coincidence. Gloss usually comes in translucent or clear containers so there isn't the same issue of wondering what color a product is.

while I procrastinate

As a reward for passing my Java test, I opened up my new Bloom lipstick Indulge. It's a warm pink on me with a touch of frost but very wearable. It's not as orange as I thought it would be. I think it'll be a very nice color for summer. Good for work. As usual, very emollient and soothing on. I love Bloom's lip products.

I need to go check out madebyblog. Very behind on all the blogs!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Current staples

It can take a while to work out whether I like a product or not. They're often more complex than immediately apparent.

My current favorites are
  • Lipgloss: Bloom lip gloss is my undisputed favorite at the moment. Giorgio Armani lipshimmer is prettier (it sparkles!), but Bloom feels better.
  • Mascara: Opera MyLash; a lot of Japanese mascaras are wonderfully smudge-free and MyLash is a moderately priced (about 1000 yen) non-fiber mascara with good lengthening and darkening properties, and some ability to thicken lashes. The formula is pretty light and not watery or goopy.
  • Nail polish: Mavala Ottoman; a shimmery bright red. Not a true red, it has a bit of a fuschia tinge with one coat, but two coats gives a lovely, bright, rich red. Reds and burgundies look fantastic on my toes. I don't wear anything on my fingernails because my nails feel like they can't breathe with nailpolish. My toenails don't have any objections. I love the tiny 5ml size. I've never used up a polish in my life, so with Mavala and mini Bourjois, I can stick to small sizes from now on. Ettusais has a charming summer collection of small polishes too.
  • Eye shadow: Inoui ID and Majolica Majorca eye shadow; wonderful texture and fun, wearable colors. My brown Kate quad is lovely but the colors just aren't very exciting. My taupe Shu Uemura shadow has the most beautiful texture and shimmer but the color closely approximates shadows on my skin. Not the most flattering effect on me; I'll have to try mixing it up with some other colors.
  • Lipstick: I still love my Armanisilk, Dior Addict 2, and Shiseido lipsticks, but I get bored of lipstick colors pretty quickly. I have to change it up more than once a week.
  • Eyebrow color: Inoui ID eyebrow pencil. I need nothing more than this. Canmake's eyebrow powder duo is also very nice and creates a natural look.
I can live without everything else, although I wouldn't want to. I suppose I shouldn't buy makeup again for a year or two. Maybe even three years.

Jean Patou's Sublime is rather a comforting scent on me. Warm and close to the skin. It's rather similar to Ungaro's Desnuda on me. I wonder which I like better. At the moment I'm leaning towards Desnuda.

Elizabeth Arden's Iced Green Tea turns into something akin to astringent herbs on my skin. Not a particularly pleasant smell. Rather medicinal.

I love the hit of grapefruit in the opening of YSL In Love; the perfect slightly bitter scent of a cut grapefruit. It's pretty addictive. Too bad it's only the top notes of a limited edition fragrance. I no longer buy limited editions; at least not for personal use.

On Saturday I bought a nice rugged nylon bag for work - about messenger bag size, with a zip pocket and two magnetic snap enclosure pockets in front, a zip pocket on the back, and one zip pocket plus two open pockets inside. The color is not very exciting, an olive brown, but very functional and appropriately muted for work. Large enough to fit my textbooks and any documents I may be carrying around.

So, having just bought this bag (and retiring a similarly sized corduroy bag), I have zero need for another bag. However! Before I went on vacation I had been eyeing a sky blue nylon Mandarina Duck bag. It was sold out when I went to look again on Saturday, so I ended up buying the olive brown bag instead. The coveted blue bag is now back in stock so I'm going to take a look at it this weekend. In terms of shape, my brown bag is nicer, but the sky blue color and futuristic design of the Mandarina Duck bag make me covet it also. I will probably buy it, because I can't think of a reason not to. I've been looking for large bags for more than a year, so I buy them if I find them.

Ugh. I need to go donate some money. My materialism has been out of control this year! At least I'm sick of shopping right now.

Friday, June 01, 2007

life passing us by: children are the smartest

I posted on my regular blog about a fascinating experiment by The Washington Post and violinist Joshua Bell.

It's a bit of a sad commentary on the daily grind, but very interesting nonetheless. And the music is stunning. Even the jerky video feed takes my breath away. ドキドキしてしまいました!

I have to see Joshua Bell in concert sometime.

On the perfume front, I gave away those samples and bottles of stuff that I never touched. One step closer to minimal! My new policy is to only buy a new sample/bottle if I use up a sample/bottle, so it's going to be a while before I can make a sample order. YSL In Love might be the first to get used up; there're only a couple spritzes left. It'll be hard to throw away the cute little sample atomizer though. I really like the top notes: it's a very authentic burst of grapefruit to me. Unfortunately I don't detect much after the top notes evaporate.

I will wear Ungaro's Desnuda tomorrow. It's been a while since I've touched it; looking forward to it!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

use up my perfume

Having a surfeit of perfume, I've resolved to put on perfume everyday (at night, as I never seem to remember in the morning) and give away the perfume that I don't particularly like.

* A little square pendant of stuff - definitely a candidate to give away. Don't particularly like it. It's either Calvin Klein Eternity Summer or the local perfume shop's homemade Green Tea fragrance.
* A sample of Curve; definitely, as I already have a bottle thanks to Brooke.
* Lanvin Eclat d'Arpege - nice but I just don't reach for it. I'll keep a little sample but give away the rest.
* debating about Crazylibellule and the Poppies Tout Oublier solid perfume. It's nice, and I haven't gotten sick of it like other perfumes I own. But it's not really me. It's rather colder than I'm usually in the mood for, although I quite like it. It's very easy to wear though. We'll see. It's handy to carry around so I am using it quite a bit.

Everything else I'll rotate through. I should only own 5 ml or less of any particular perfume. Anything more is really excessive considering how much I use it. I have yet to open my Chanel No. 5 or Le Feu d'Issey light. I might open Le Feu as a treat after taking my Java exam. I'm going to wait till my nose progresses a bit more before opening No. 5. Have to be able to appreciate it fully, although I'm making progress on that front.

That mystery perfume that Amy gave me is quite nice, I have to ask her what it is. I may be Michael Kors.

You know you have too much stuff when the thought of getting rid of it is exciting. I like a lot of the stuff, but I just want to focus on the stuff I love. I'm planning to do the same thing with my clothing. At least only 2 items in my closet are unworn.

Because making lists is fun, I will list my collection (minus that little square pendant of perfume):
  1. agnes b. le petit b.b.
  2. Amy's mystery perfume
  3. Bvlgari Omnia Amethyste
  4. Caron Farnesiana
  5. Chanel No. 5
  6. Crazylibellule and the Poppies Tout Oublier solid perfume
  7. Givenchy Oblique
  8. Emanuel Ungaro Desnuda
  9. Etude House Bijou Pure White solid perfume
  10. Fragonard Eau du Bonheur solid perfume
  11. Hermes Eau de Cologne (wonder if I'll grow to like this)
  12. Issey Miyake L'eau d'Issey
  13. Issey Miyake Le Feu d'Issey light
  14. Jean Patou Sublime
  15. Lanvin Eclat d'Arpege
  16. Laura Biagiotti Roma (wonder if I'll grow to like this)
  17. Laurent Le Guernec's perfume mod
  18. Les Parfums de Rosine Un Zest de Rose
  19. Liz Clairborne Curve
  20. Missha
  21. Muelhens 4711 original cologne
  22. The Body Shop Indian Gardenia
  23. Yves Saint Laurent With Love
Gee, seems like I have a ton of stuff. Most of these are little sample vials though. Quite a random collection, don't you think?

In other perfume "news," I finally got a chance to try ElisabethW's perfumes in Kichijoji a while back. Everything was really nice, but the Sweet Tea was too sweet (imagine that). A pity. Very nice fragrances though. I need to go back and sniff again. They appear to have discontinued 6 of their scents though; what a pity. Violet, Woods, Redwoods, and Blue Sage sounded very nice.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

I am not my hair

Loving India.Arie's song "I Am Not My Hair"! I also caught a bit of her duet with Anthony David called "Words." That is music. Great duet. Yes, yes, I am way behind on music news, but some of this stuff just doesn't come here. We get Beyonce and Paris Hilton and Posh Spice.

Saturday, May 19, 2007


I'm shifting my energy from makeup to being healthy; exercising and eating well. Real Simple has some excellent suggestions for alternative cooking with one's rice cooker; I'm going to try the risotto tomorrow.

These recipes look scrumptious too:
Barley Risotto with Asparagas
Corn Risotto
Sweet Pea Risotto

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Marina's new fragrance mods are out!

The newest versions of Marina's Holy Grail fragrance are out! Marina has posted on Made By Blog about her impressions of the two versions created by perfumer Clement Gavarry of International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.

I made a comment about my impressions too.

In other news, Scentzilla has an extremely well-written post about blogging and ethics.

About me, I am cleaning house! I won't be buying any more makeup or perfume for myself for the rest of the year. Other than one good concealer. I'm just going to run around sampling fragrances for the rest of 2007. Maybe I'll finally get through my list of fragrances-to-sniff. Isetan department store is going to be sick of me soon, haha.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

skincare and sunscreen

Since my skin has been freaking out lately, I haven't been using much on my face. It's down to salicylic acid for the breakouts, a bit of Avene thermal water as moisturizer, lip balm, and sunscreen. Unfortunately the sunscreen has been one of the reasons I've been breaking out, so I've been scrambling for other sunscreens to try.

It's kind of a pain. I think the DHC and Fancl cleansing oils leave my skin sensitive to other products. Perhaps they're just too harsh. I've been using them everyday as a makeup remover, but I will try getting a separate makeup remover and using the oils two or three times a week.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

having computer issues, but in the meantime, my current faves

My computer is having issues (lost the will to live on its first birthday?), but I feel like advertising my current favorite products.

Also, some new purchases:
petit b.b. by agnes b.: found in a little store in Shimokitazawa; a bit of sweet citrus? Disappears in an instant; I think this is a perfume for children as it is labelled eau de scenteur. Anyway, I found the 10 seconds addictive and the 60% off difficult to resist. They also had Petit Guerlain and an array of perfumes I've never heard of. I had the impression that Petit Guerlain was hard to find, but perhaps I am mistaken. I liked the top notes of quite a few of the perfumes, but they all seemed to remind me of Farnesiana. As I have a large decant of Farnesiana (will I ever use it up?) it was easy to say no to the other perfumes.

I also bought Tout Oublier from the Les Divines Alcoves Perfume Collection by Crazylibellule and The Poppies. I can't wait to use this cool, quiet perfume, but I feel a bit guilty about all the things I've been buying lately, so I'm thinking of making it a gift for someone.

Anyway, my current favorite cosmetics and toiletries:

* 4711: addictive citrusy cologne. Lasts half an hour but it's cheap to buy lots.

* Giorgio Armani ArmaniSilk #27: a beautiful beige lipstick with a silky finish. It's not matte, it's not glossy, but it's lovely. And has great lasting power. Too bad it's ludicrously expensive. It's a good thing that it'll probably go bad before I use it up. This stuff is practically pure pigment. I can't wait for the ArmaniReds collection to come to Japan, but my wallet quails.

* Giorgio Armani Lipshimmer #22: a beautiful, peachy nude with sparkle. Not frosty or shimmery or glittery, but sparkly. I stare at my lips when I wear this with the ArmaniSilk. It's so pretty! Again, I'm flabbergasted by the price, but this is a beautiful, lightweight, scentless lipgloss with good lasting power. I can also see the amount of product decrease, so it's not going to hold out nearly as long as the lipstick will.

* Visee Aqua Shining Eyes BE 300: a pretty, glittery pale yellow/gold cream eyeshadow. It's long lasting and looks gorgeous. Visee is sometimes on sale at department stores so it's possible to get it for about 1400 yen ($12 or so). It's a pity glitter doesn't quite work for weekdays.

* Majolica Majorca Majolook eyeshadow palette: longlasting, silky eyeshadows in a terribly cute palette. I want to collect them all!

* Opera MyLash mascara: nice amount of volume and lengthening; no clumpiness, and best of all, doesn't smear at all. Trumps Dejavu Fiberwig as MyLash is quite a bit cheaper.

* Inoui ID eyebrow pencil: natural effect, terribly easy to use, and beautiful packaging. It's really a pity that Shiseido discontinued this brand.

Friday, March 30, 2007

current lemmings

* L'Artisan Creme d'Ananas (body cream) - it's a good thing that they only appear to sell the fragrances in Japan, although I will check on the main store in Tokyo one day. 200ml for $80.
* Bourjois Effet 3D Nudes - I want either Brun Poetic 33 or Nude Energic 35; they look gorgeous. But I have way too many glosses at the moment. I'll have to use up two nude glosses before I can buy this one. It'll probably be a year at this rate.

Recurring but quiet lemmings (don't feel the urge to buy immediately, but have wanted for at least half a year):
* Shiseido &Face Washing powder - Fancl and DHC are probably just as good, but &Face is just luxurious. I'm still debating which washing powder to buy, as I'll need something for my upcoming trip. 70g for 2,625 yen. I think I'll buy whatever is available in the smallest size, which probably means DHC.
* Fresh lip balm - luxurious and wonderfully moisturizing. But I currently can't spend that much money on a lip balm ($22). Although I do want to try the infamous Prada lip balm.
* LUSH Honey I washed the Kids soap - it's really popular and I'd like to see if it's as wonderful as people say. We'll see. I like LUSH soaps like snowcake, which is great for winter; moisturizing and very fine lather. But I have 3 soaps in my bath at the moment, so there's really no room for more.
* 4711 cologne (the original) - I'm halfway through my current decant; It's a great spicy citrus.
* L'Occitane Amande Shower Gel - I love almond, and this gel smells delicately of almonds without sugar. It's important that the scent not be too sweet, otherwise it reminds me of marzipan and makes me hungry.
* Anna Sui Moisturizing Touch Up Stick - no longer found on the Victoria's Secret website, but still available at Should I buy it? Dilemmas. Maybe in July. I am over quota for June. If you include shipping, it's about as much as Fresh lip balm. Hrm...
* Yves Saint Laurent Golden Gloss - it just looks gorgeous. Pretty sparkle. Someday, haha.
* Awake Stardom lip gloss - again, it looks terribly pretty. Can you tell that I like gloss?
* L'Occitane Ruban d'Orange Shower Gel - the sweet orange is strangely addictive to me. I think the perfume is a little too simplistic but it's a very sunny fragrance. Plotting to buy it one of these days.

They have CB I Hate Perfume; Frederic Malle, and Serge Lutens in Isetan Shinjuku Men's building!!! I tried the library scent; very nice. I don't know where to start with the Frederic Malles. But I think I'll be visiting the Men's building a lot. The salespeople are going to think I'm crazy. And it's highly unlikely that I'll buy any full bottles, although the Blu Meditteraneo citrus sounds lovely.

Satisfied lemmings:
* Crazylibellule and The Poppies: purchased Les Divines Alcoves in "tout oublier" for my birthday. Being greedy, I want more. It's a lovely, quiet, Iris scent in adorable packaging. Currently carrying around in my purse.
* Bloom lip gloss - this is the most emollient lip gloss I've tried so far. Love it. Pout is a wonderfully flattering shade, so I've been wearing this to work for the past week.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Shift to skin care

So, I've finally recognized the wisdom of the Lipstick Page Forums Beauty Blog.

I went a little crazy over the past few months, in a "kid in a candy store" phase. I bought quite a few cosmetics which are great fun to play with (lipgloss, eyeshadow, blush). But now I'm noticing that my skin just isn't very clear at the moment, so I'm going to focus on improving that before dumping color cosmetics on top of it. Lipgloss and lipstick are about the only things I can wear easily at the moment. It's a good thing that those are the things I buy most often. In any case, I'm on a purchase freeze for anything other than skin care.

Some posts from the Lipstick Page blogs that I find particularly helpful:
The simplicity of skin: an excellent guide to skincare
Dain's exposition on Minimalism
Old School Dain Minimalism
A return to minimalism: Introduction
A return to Minimalism part 1
A return to Minimalism part 2

Despite all those posts on minimalism that I find compelling, I still want to buy more lip color. I don't know why, but I seem to get bored of everything fairly quickly. Everything that I've gotten lately looks lovely, but the novelty wears off and I want to try something new. Unhealthy or something.

Currently love:
  • Korres Mint Tea body milk (lovely scent that lasts, good moisturizing products, organic?)
  • DHC deep cleansing oil (I would love to try the Soft Touch Cleansing Oil but it can only be ordered from the website)
  • Beauty Credit Double Moist Pomegranate Collagen (frankly, it's the scent that I adore. I think the moisturizing properties are average as they are unnoticeable to me, but I'll gladly keep buying this for the divine scent. The Q10 coenzyme cream has a marvelous light rose scent).
Thanks to a friend, I have been testing a few of Kiehl's products. The texture of their products is lovely! But I find the ingredient lists a little iffy (the Foaming Non-Detergent Washable Cleanser contains detergents). I'm going through Sodium PCA "Oil-Free" Moisturizer at the moment; lovely feel and quite moisturizing. However, it contains multiple parabens and alcohols, which I would like to stay away from.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Anna Nicole Smith

Colleen from The Lipstick Page Beauty Blog made an excellent post about Anna Nicole Smith's passing. All I can think of is that it's a waste that her life should end at such an point. So very sad.

Friday, February 02, 2007


Vanessa L. Williams looked fantastic at the Screen Actors Guild awards! I love the earrings! And she's so beautiful.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Almost the weekend

Time for pictures of eyeshadow and lip gloss from Inoui ID (Shiseido's line with makeup artist Dick Page). The eyeshadow is wonderful; easy to apply with beautiful colors that build up wonderfully. The case is sold separately but I'm glad I bought it; the brush applicator that it comes with is excellent and I've been carrying the quad around every day. I'm going to buy one or two more quads before Inoui ID closes in March (late Feb?), and refills for the eyebrow pencil. I might get another lip gloss too.

Inoui ID eyeshadow quad #35 and case
Inoui ID eyeshadow quad #35 and case

Inoui ID lip gloss #5 (Sweet)
Inoui ID lip gloss #5 (Sweet)

Friday, January 26, 2007


Yay, it's Friday! This was a busy week, so in celebration I'm going to post one of my pretties from late last year when I discovered that some Japanese drugstores have semi-permanent sales on various Japanese cosmetics. The blush at the bottom is much more peach in real life. My flash washed it out quite a bit.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Shu, JAR, Fresh, grass

I picked up my first Shu Uemura eyeshadow from a duty free shop in Taipei. Love! It's a metallic brown color with a surprising hint of pink in it. Dark but quite wearable, and wow does it last a long time. It even prevents my eye liner from smudging. That has never happened before. I can hardly believe it. Brilliant! I will have to get other colors.

In my whirlwind (albeit longest ever since childhood) tour of NYC, I ventured into Bergdorf Goodman and sought out the fabled JAR boutique. I'd imagined a sheltered cave, but it was more like a dark little alcove with dark velvet. An unmanned dark little alcove, with people flitting in and out of the secret room on the side, and no one giving me a second glance as I peered into the alcove.

I wandered in and out, hoping someone would appear to stand duty over the JARs, but no one did. So eventually I just waltzed into the alcove and peered at the bottles lying in a velvet tray. The bolt of lightening insignia in lieu of any words is rather spiffy. Since no one materialized to assist me, I thought about just picking up a bottle and trying it on, but I wasn't in the mood to talk to security that day. And what if I dropped it?! No new debts needed for the new year. So, that was my experience, or lack of, with JAR.

In lieu of that, I sniffed a bunch of the Carons and Annick Goutals in the perfume area next to the alcove while two sales people ignored me. I tried on the ETRO with almond on it (very nice). I dabbed on one of CB I Hate Perfume's products, a black tea if I remember correctly. Very interesting! I asked around for the Slatkins perfumes and got to try one on; lovely. The lady on duty there was very friendly; we chatted about the unavailability of the perfume in Japan. As I left the store, I slid past a group seeking a restroom being denied entry because closing time had been reached.

In Saks a friendly Bond No. 9 saleslady showed me the most recent Bond perfume; I can see why this line is popular. In Bloomingdales I finally ran across Hanae Mori Butterfly; I'd like to get a sample of this to try on longer. I was impressed that my NY friend had almost used up a bottle of Sarah Jessica Parker's Lovely.

At the Fresh store in Soho, a friendly saleslady let us try on Fresh's Sugar lip balm. The scent is pretty but it didn't seem all that spectacular. An hour or two later though, I noticed how pretty the balm looked on my lips. At the end of the day my lips were still soft and moisturized. I can see why this is their top seller; I'm tempted to buy it in spite of the exorbitant price tag.

The nice thing about my trip to NY and Taiwan was the realization that my "the grass is always greener" thinking has been in effect for a long time during my residence in Japan. But other than a few items (shoes in my size), there isn't a lot that I can't get for reasonable prices in Japan. Pretty much the only difference is that certain foods can be a lot cheaper and better outside of Japan (say Chinese food), but there's a heck of a lot of good food in Japan. So now I'll stop thinking "I could get this way cheaper in the U.S." and just focus on whether I like it or not.

I really like my T'estimo metallicolor liner, and I'm still addicted to the smell of Beauty Credit Pomegranate Emulsion. And I have no desire to shop for a long, long time. Which is good because I need to exercise and do some volunteer work.

I still need more shoes though.