Happy New Year! Top Product Picks from 2014

It has been a great year and as I welcome 2015, I’m just happy to acknowledge the wonderful products that I’ve tested in the past 12 months…

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I’ve chosen the top reviews and products that I’ve enjoyed the most from last year, 2014. And if you’re visiting my blog for the first time, I hope you’ll enjoy the article that you’ve landed on 🙂 


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I can’t get enough of NARS and I can’t even choose just 1 eye product from this brand to be my top 
choice. Nars eye paint has become a daily part of my eye makeup. It’s just so versatile; works as a liner; works great for smokey eyes; works as an eyeshadow…perfect for me. 

Nars Dual Eyeshadow is amazing. It can be used with both wet and dry application, giving more edge on how you build eye effect with just 1 or 2 shades. Every time I use any Nars product, I feel like a pro. 


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I just recently reviewed its Eyeshadow Palette in Acid Brights and I’m really impressed, considering that this brand sells very affordable products. The color payoff is superb so if you’re looking for more impact with your color play, this affordable eye makeup brand is highly recommendable. They have a great range of lovely lipsticks, too!


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Who would have thought that I’d explore loose powder? I’ve been using compact powder and liquid foundation for the past X years but this extremely stylish loose powder is irresistible. Powder texture is perfect and does wonders on the face. 

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I had a total of 3 MAC lipsticks this year (I think) but I loved this one the most. Firstly, I adore the matte red finish of the tube, which is a step sexier than the usual MAC tube. And, of course, the lip color itself is simply kick*ss. Wear whenever, wherever; it adds style to your look. This red shade has shimmer effect and looks even better for evening wear!

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This moisturiser restores elasticity of the skin and stimulates collagen production. It has an unusual color but I love how it works on my face and neck. In just 3 days of using this, there’s a significant result on the texture and suppleness of the skin. It’s a great anti-aging cream!


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This is my perfect companion for the year in my fight against photo-aging. I love the sheer finish, which also makes it great on the face, even with makeup. It has a non-sticky texture and works for both body and face. Affordable, too!


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Every time I use this mask, I just keep falling in love with it again. It’s not surprising at all that a lot of celebrities are also captivated by this product. The immediate effect on the skin is amazing, right after a 20-minute treatment with this mask. It’s addictive but, of course, I put a 3-day interval between uses. Oh, can’t wait to use it again in the next 3 days!


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Sun exposure definitely takes a toll on our skin eventually. It’s a never-ending battle against photo-aging but with the right product, our skin will have better defences and cure, too! This Clinique product reduced my spots effectively, used together with the brightening cream. 


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My husband gave this as a Christmas present in 2013 and I am so in love with it. The fragrance is of floral notes; I love floral notes! And the bottle design is chic, so beautiful to see in my vanity cabinet. 


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I love attending beauty workshops when I get the chance and among the ones that I’ve attended, this is the best one. The event was done efficiently and beautifully. Venue was great, food served was delicious, workshop was fun and educational, guests were treated highly, products are amazing and the Dior & Women’s Weekly team were just amazing. 


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Luxola has really made beauty shopping convenient and fun. I’ve been frequently exploring new brands to try and I still enjoy the feeling of surprise every time I receive a Luxola parcel. The brands they carry are worth exploring, such as SkinInc, Miriness and affordable makeup tools like Sigma and Zoeva. Promotions make Luxola shopping even more irresistible. Service is fast and efficient, why wouldn’t I shop?


top-shampoo-watsons-argan-oil
My hair can get very dry and lifeless so I need hair products that provide damage repair and nourishment. I guess my rebounding sessions have made my hair dry and weak. I love this Watsons Argan Oil hair care range, which is also affordable. 


top-hair-accessories-headbands-sereni-shentel
This brand is simply unique, creative and beautiful. The headband designs and styles range from classy, fun, elegant, simple, colourful, surprising and more. The way Sereni and Shentel brought head piece concepts to life is catchy and captivating. It even has collection for babies, too! When I first saw photos of its different collections for babies, kids and women, I adored the brand. 


top-female-shoe-brand-charles-and-keith
Charles & Keith has been great on my feet. I love their designs, I love the material and my feet love their shoes. I often get sore feet or some discomfort with other brands but not from C&K. Their shoes are durable, lasts long and stylish. I enjoy wearing wedges and C&K has one of the best collections that change every season. The bags are worth buying, too. 


top-kids-shoes-brand-stride-rite
I’m a shoe-aholic and I also enjoy shopping shoes for my son. Stride Rite is the best brand I’ve bought for him. The shoes last very long, even the washable ones after regular washing. It’s very comfortable and my son enjoys wearing them. 


top-wine-provider-wine-talk-malaysia
Wine is one of the few addictive things in life that I enjoy and I particularly love Wine Talk when it comes to looking for or buying wines. Wines are easy to find and order online via its website, and the wines will be delivered straight to your doorstep. Simple and easy. 

So these are my top picks from 2014! I am looking forward to more products and services to try this year. 2015, let’s make it even better, more exciting and more fun!


Fight pigmentation with Clinique Dark Spot Corrector & Brightening Cream

My concern for my dark spots and uneven skin tone has brought me to test Clinique products for the first time
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With the kind of weather that we have in Malaysia, it’s quite inevitable to face the dark truth about having bright, sunny days — skin darkening and pigmentation. Don’t get me wrong; it’s not ‘dark skin’ per se that I’m worried about. I believe that every woman is beautiful in her own skin, no matter what color. It’s those dark spots and discolourations that I’m concerned with. Sun exposure and aging can cause uneven pigmentation and unsightly spots on our body and, worse, on our face.
I recently hunted for a product with dark spot correcting properties as I’ve developed some spots on my cheeks. It might have been there for some time now but it has become noticeable and I’m on ‘panic’ mode. And I think it’s about time I try a brand or product that has some strong clinical background. After all, it takes good science to combat and repair pigmentation. So I decided to try Clinique for the first time.

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The Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector (RM245 for 30mL) is packed in a light green box with the logo in silver stamp. The cap has a silver seal to ensure that you purchased a new, unopened product.

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The dark spot corrector is dispensed from the bottle with a fine pump. It works well to dispense just the right amount to apply on the face.

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The dark spot corrector is a light, white translucent gel that is easily absorbed by the skin. Because it is 100% fragrance free, don’t expect any scent, just clean and simple on your face. Although I enjoy skincare products that have mild, pleasant scent, I don’t mind it being fragrance-free. It is meant to be suitable for those with sensitivity to whitening or evening products.

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I’m someone who enjoys reading product inserts, like this one that comes with Clinique Dark Spot Corrector. Let me share some important notes…
Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector
Meet the damage eraser. Clinical studies confirm that its patented formula with CL-302 Complex dramatically helps reverse the appearance of dark spots, age spots, skin stresses and darkening from blemish marks, starting in 4 weeks.

What improvement can you expect and when will you see it?
Lots of variables affect how quickly you’ll start to see results — degree of pigmentation, medications, stress and UV exposure all play a part. Generally, it takes 4 weeks of twice daily use to see measurable results. Be patient. 
  • In 1-2 weeks – skin seems brighter, feels smoother
  • In 4 weeks – dark spots are visibly diminished
  • In 12 weeks – you’ll see dark spots dramatically reduced

I love this honest statement written on the insert/ leaflet: “Sorry, but freckles you were born with are forever. Does not correct melasma (mask of pregnancy).”
How to use the Dark Spot Corrector:
Twice daily, cleanse, gently exfoliate, then apply the dose from 2 pumps all over the face. Apply a moisturizer. Daily sunscreen of SPF15/ PA++ or higher is imperative.
Life after opening is 24 months.
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As I mentioned before, no single product can work alone. Skincare products work with other products in our entire skincare regimen. To maximize the result for brightening my dark spots, I also got the Clinique Even Better Brightening Moisture Gel Cream.
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Like the dark spot corrector, Clinique Even Better Brightening Moisture Gel Cream (RM175 for 50mL) is packed in a light green box with the logo in silver stamp. The cap also has a silver seal to ensure that you purchased a new, unopened product.

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The moisture gel cream jar has a secondary cover to preserve the cream from dust and other elements when you open it. The white plastic cover is embossed with Clinique logo and has a small finger handle for easy opening.

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The gel cream is a white, light texture that easily blends on the skin and does not leave a sticky feeling. It is also 100% fragrance free, allergy tested and formulated for Asian skins. This gel cream feels great on the face and blends well with my daily sunblock. Some whitening products can be too harsh, specially when applied on the neck, but this Clinique Brightening Gel is also suitable on my neck.
Clinique Even Better Brightening Moisture Gel Cream
Oil-free brightening gel cream supplies refreshing, all-day hydration for oilier skins. It is formulated to be a year-round source of refreshing all-day hydration. It helps visibly reduce dark spots and discolourations, bringing new clarity to the skin. Skin-fortifying ingredients help strengthen skin’s resistance to future darkening.
How to use the Brightening Moisture Gel Cream:
Twice daily, cleanse, gently exfoliate, apply toner then serum/ spot corrector. Apply the brightening moisturizer all over the face. Daily sunscreen of SPF15/ PA++ or higher is imperative.
The ultimate question…DOES CLINIQUE WORK FOR ME?
I know that the Clinique Dark Spot Corrector needs at least 4 weeks to see results on dark spots but I wanted to check my spot improvement in as early as 2 weeks. I am patient but I am also excited.
Compare my cheeks before (left) and after (right) 2 weeks:
 

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LEFT: Before using Clinique Dark Spot Corrector and Brightening Cream

RIGHT: After 2 weeks of using Clinique

It is a small improvement but there was improvement in 14 days! So, YES, Clinique products are working on my skin. Take note that I am using the dark spot corrector and brightening cream together with a sunblock product.

Here’s how my skin looks with makeup over Clinique:

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Let’s start fighting those dark spots! 

Price:
Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector – RM245 (around USD76) for 30mL
Clinique Even Better Brightening Moisture Gel Cream – RM175 (around USD54) for 50mL
Where to buy:
Departmental stores, selected cosmetic boutiques and Sephora
They offer FREE standard shipping with orders above RM250