Tuesday, June 13, 2017

PINCHme and PINCHme Blogger Box Review

Have you heard of PINCHme? It's this exciting way of PINCHme members to try free samples from brands. Samples range from beauty, snacks, baby, pet, personal care, cleaning products and household items. No gimmicks, its 100% FREE - no credit card required, free samples, free shipping. All PINCHme.com members have to do is review the products that they receive. 

So how do you actually get your samples?

It's simple. 

> Answer survey questions and complete your member profile (the more you answer questions, the more chances you get to match relevant free samples!)
> On Sample Tuesday (One Tuesday of the month), PINCHme gives you an array of samples that matched you and you are welcome to select the samples that you want to try for your PINCHme box. 
> No credit card required, you get your box shipped to your doorstep.
>Review the products you have received. You have 30 days to answer your feedback survey. PINCHme loves your opinions on the items that you try. Constructive criticisms and tips are best! You don't need to have a blog and write about your review, simply go back to your PINCHme page and give your feedback, although social media raves and reviews are definitely welcome. #HappyPINCHer

*Given the 100% free nature of our platform, we cannot guarantee that all members receive a box on Sample Tuesday. There are many factors that impact who qualifies for samples, including the volume of samples we have available and the targeting specified by our brand partners (at any given time).

PINCHme Sample Tuesday will be on June 20 so hurry and sign up and complete your surveys and profile to get the chance to pick your samples on the 20th. 

PINCHme Perks
PINCHme is more than free samples! Get special PINCHme Perks including partner offers and exclusive sweepstakes. 

Become a part of something bigger than the box. Join over 2.8 million members across country!


*I have received these free samples for review from PINCHme*

PINCHme has kindly sent me a Blogger Box which comprises of past and future samples. Included in this box are some items for the June 20th, Sample Tuesday! 

Who's excited? I clearly am!

I received a whopping 11 items, the most I have actually received to sample. I'll break down each product for you as some of these I've already tried in the past as well. 

I'll start off with beauty and personal care products since that's what gets me instantly excited.


I have surprisingly received 4 Biore products and I am ecstatic about it. Throughout the years of blogging, I have reiterated several times how I prefer Korean skin care products than Western skin care products because they are milder and suit my skin really well. I only have a handful of favorite Western skin care products and Biore is actually one of them! I have practically tried all facial cleansers from Biore and I love them all! My all time favorite product is their Blemish Figthing Ice Cleanser mainly because of it's cooling sensation. Sadly, that is not included in this sample box. 

Biore Charcoal Acne Scrub
With a combination of salicylic acid and charcoal, it removes dirt and oil build up from the pores. Charcoal draws out the impurities and traps them to eliminate breakouts.

I've tried this one a long time ago and it is a great cleanser for acne prone skin. I quite enjoy this. The charcoal ingredient really works in clearing out the pores although it doesn't minimize it. 
>Great for clogged pores, oily-combination skin and acne prone skin

Biore Baking Soda Cleansing Scrub
Powder to foam formula activates with water for a deep clean and gentle exfoliation.

>Great for all skin types, reduces skin texture.

Biore Baking Soda Pore Cleanser
Deep cleans to remove dirt and impurities from the pores.
This provides gentle exfoliation without stripping the skin too much of it's natural oils. It also gradually brightens and lightens up acne scars and hyperpigmentation.

>Good for all skin types, acne scars and hyperpigmentation

Biore Baking Soda Acne Scrub
A combination of baking soda and salicylic acid to exfoliate skin and clear acne. It unclogs pores and balances skin to reduce breakouts.

This is one of my go-to Biore scrubs whenever I get a massive break out which happens once every couple of months. It reduces skin texture, making the skin smoother, and helps hasten the life of your pimple so you get clearer skin in a couple of days. 
>Good for all skin types, acne prone skin, reduces skin texture

Gilette Antiperspirant Deodorant
Fresh, clear gel antiperspirant and deodorant that provides all-day protection from wetness and odor.

For years, I have averted to using men's deodorants rather than women's because I sweat too much for a lady. Nothing really worked until I switched over to using men's deos although the clear gel formula never really worked quite well for me. Fresh scent, like. Clear gel, dislike. Sweat test, fail. Smell test, pass. Verdict = 50/100. Personal opinion guys. 

Vagisil Odor Block
Gynecologist-tested with a clean, fresh scent that stops oder before it starts.

I normally don't use feminine cleansing products, mainly because I believe in just using mild soap and water so that it won't disrupt my feminine pH balance. However, summer means sweat and what other part of a woman's body is covered up and also sweats throughout the day? Yep. Your pubic region. This product works. Period. 

Carol's Daughter Almond Milk Shampoo and Conditioner
Shampoo and conditioner for damaged and over-processed hair. Made with almond oil, aloe butter and proteins, it helps strengthen hair from root to tip and helps to defend against future breakage.

I don't dislike it, I don't love it either. What I don't like about sampling a shampoo and a conditioner in a packet is that I can't really form an opinion on the product because it's only good for one use, the most, two. This product smells great. I'm not picky with my shampoo as I am with my conditioner. I like really rich and moisturizing conditioners for my color treated and damaged hair and although this product specifically targets that area, I think it is not rich enough in my personal opinion.

Bug Protector All Natural Bug Repellent
All natural, DEET-free bug repellent that provides protection against mosquitoes, gnats and other biting insects.

Made from ingredients like Lemongrass oil, Geranium Oil, Peppermint, Cinnamon Oil, Castor Oil and Vitamin E, I already know that this would smell good and would work, The only thing missing from this list of wonderful ingredients is Tea Tree Oil. Sprayed this on the night I received my blogger box because I was grilling barbecue at dusk and I just didn't want any bug bites. My legs and arms survived! No bites, so it does work. And I personally love how this product smells too. 

Belgian Chocolate Whey Protein
Catalyst 100% Grass fed Whey - high quality pure protein in Belgian chocolate flavor.

Sweet and tastes indeed like Belgian Chocolate. I love it. Definitely need that protein boost now that I'm trying to get back into fitness.

Quaker Chewy Bites
Chewy, bite-sized granola pieces with chocolate chip.

I love oats and granola bars. It's healthy and fills you up real quick so if you're extremely hungry but you're watching out for your diet, this can be a healthy guilty pleasure. You can't go wrong with chocolate chip granola bites. 

Scotch Brite Lint Roller
Remove pesky hair, fur and lint.

Pretty much like any other lint roller. Can't really say too much about it except that it's the branding that you'll be paying for when you get it in retail. 


Are you getting excited now? PINCHme is really generous guys. You get to try the samples that you want from the ones that match your surveys all for free during Sample Tuesdays. 

Below is the list of the samples that are going to be available on June 20, 2017, Sample Tuesday, 12Noon EST:

Hidden Valley® Simply Ranch Classic Ranch
Quaker® Chewy Bites
Pure Leaf Home Brewed Teas

Bioré® Baking Soda Pore Cleanser
Bioré® Baking Soda Cleansing Scrub
Bioré® Charcoal Acne Scrub
Bioré® Baking Soda Acne Scrub
Carol’s Daughter Shampoo + Conditioner
LISTERINE® COOL MINT® Zero and Total Care Zero Alcohol Mouthwash
Bug Protector All Natural Bug Repellent
ZzzQuil Nighttime Sleep-Aid
Sundown Naturals B12 500mcg Gummies
Tummy Zen Total Heartburn Relief
Gillette Cool Wave Clear Gel 0.5 oz.
Sensodyne® Deep Clean

Fancy Feast® Creamy Delights™ Wet Cat Food
Cesar Dry Dog Food
Scotch-Brite™ Lint Roller

Credit: PINCHme

*Given the 100% free nature of our platform, we cannot guarantee that all members receive a box on Sample Tuesday. There are many factors that impact who qualifies for samples, including the volume of samples we have available and the targeting specified by our brand partners (at any given time).

Join PINCHme and join the PINCHme community. Hey, it's FREE! 

Friday, June 2, 2017

Summer 2017: Night Time Beauty Routine (K-Beauty) - The Mask Bar SoHo

Who has skin issues whenever the weather changes like I do? I'm sure most of you girls do. It is just not easy to take care of the skin when the weather and temperature changes drastically. Back in March, where it was still pretty much winter but it was teasing spring time weather, I got horribly sick and on top of that, the time of the month was coming around, my skin was just not taking any of it. I started breaking out, which is crazy because I like to think I have good skin, except for a pimple or two during the time of the month. Not only was I having major breakout but my skin became bumpy too. I had to do something ASAP, or else I wouldn't feel good about my skin at all. 

I've been doing this routine since March and it is now June, so almost three months now. My skin is now free of bumps and pimples and my only skin issues I have left are my huge pores (I'm on another journey to find the best pore minimizing products) and my dark under eye circles which I mostly blame on genetics. I have dry/combination skin by the way. I hope this routine will help you ladies out there who have similar issues. Also, this routine is made up of Korean Beauty products which I find more effective and appealing to my skin. 

First thing I did was go to my favorite Korean beauty shop, The Mask Bar Soho in New York City. By the way guys, they changed locations, The Mask Bar Soho is now located at 36 Howard Street, NY, NY 10013. If you pass by, look for Jen and tell her Joanne sent you! ^^ And for those who have been shopping at The Mask Bar at K-town, unfortunately that store has closed already since the building in that area is going to be renovated. I also went to Nature Republic at Union Square to get a few oldies but goodies.

Makeup Removal

I should start off with makeup removal but I ran out of my Nature Republic Aloe Cleansing Tissue for a good month now and I have yet to repurchase it. I've just been using the Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelette. I have always used the Neutrogena makeup wipes but after using the Nature Republic Aloe Cleansing Tissues, it just didn't feel as good. The NR tissue is thinner in comparison to the Neutrogena, however, NR Aloe feels lightweight on the skin and removes the makeup as well as, if not better, than the Neutrogena.


The next step is actually cleansing the face. I have been obsessed with the Nature Republic Argan Cleansing Foam. It has a light fragrance which I am thankful for since most cleansers have strong fragrances. You literally need a dime size and it would cleanse your face really well, just ad a little bit of water and it will foam up nicely. I like using the Clarisonic Mia or the Foreo Luna with it (I'll make another post on which I like best between the two). It doesn't strip your skin and actually leaves your skin soft and subtly moisturized. I barely find any makeup residue on my skin, when I do, it's usually mascara or eyeliner that I couldn't fully remove. 

Lip Scrub

Before I head out of the bathroom, I like giving my lips a good scrub. I do this two to three times a week since I get really dry lips and we don't want no chapped and dry lips. I use Lush Bubblegum Lip Scrub and follow with a tiny application of Aquaphor ointment. 


One of Jen's (The Mask Bar) recommendation is the Holika Holika Skin & Pore Zero Toning Pad. It is basically a cotton pad soaked in a toner. To be completely honest I don't see any difference between using this and other toners however I do like this. I don't have to buy a separate toner and cotton pad and it comes with it's own plastic tong/forcep to keep it hygienic. I didn't notice any pore minimization while I was using this although I like how it does remove those eyeliner and mascara remnants without any burn on the eyes. This is really what I like most about K-Beauty, it is rare for me to try a skincare product that irritates my skin and eyes unlike most Western skincare products I've tried. 


I have first received and reviewed the May Coop Raw Sauce back in July 2015 thanks to BNTNews, and I have been in love ever since. I've gone through 2 bottles already and this third one is about to be finished as well. Of course, I've also tried other essences in between but I always go back to the Raw Sauce. It is so much easier to purchase K-Beauty products nowadays because of it's popularity and the May CoopRaw Sauce is actually available at Sephora. You can apply this with a cotton pad but I actually like just patting it into the skin - I love how it sinks into the skin. It is rich in glycerin so it is an effective moisturizer and reinforces skin immunity. On days that I feel like my skin is just getting too oily, I skip moisturizing and end the routine here.


Sheet masks are heaven sent! For the first month of doing this routine, I actually masked for 30 days straight! That's a lot of sheet masks but it honestly was worth it and it helped my really bad skin. Lately, I've only been masking once or twice a week. If your skin is in a really bad condition, I suggest that you try doing at least the 7 Day sheet mask routine if you can't do the 30 days. I swear your skin will thank you for it. I picked up several boxes of sheet masks when I was at The Mask Bar SoHo. They have good deals all the time with sheet mask boxes from great brands. My favorite brands are Leaders, SNP and MediHeal. 

Pro-tip: Pop the mask in the fridge for about 5 mins before use. This will help de-puff your skin. Leave sheet mask on only at a maximum of 30 minutes or the said time on the instructions. Leaving the mask on for a really long time doesn't help your skin at all since it won't be able to breath with a sheet on top. Lastly, don't throw your mask right away, there's still essence on the sheet so make sure to rub that on your neck and arms before you throw it out. 


After you mask, pat the essence on your skin and let it sink for a good 2-3 minutes before you apply your moisturizer. I love gel and watery type moisturizers during the summer since the skin tends to produce more sebum and most gel type moisturizers are lighter on the skin and helps decrease sebum production. We want our skin hydrated still even if we have an oily skin type so moisturizing is still a must. My favorite go-to gel-type moisturizer is actually the Belif True Cream Aqua Bomb (available at Spehora) and the Yeblang Special A Star Jelly Cream, both I've run out of. My third favorite is the Nature Republic Aqua Super Aqua Max Combination Watery Cream. I've also reviewed this product back in 2014 for BNTNews and has been a favorite since then. 

That wraps up my Night Time Beauty Routine. This routine has worked for me over the last few months and I'm happy to be sharing this with you. Thoughts anyone? 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

For the Love of Sneakers

Growing up, I've always dressed according to comfort - a simple tee, shorts and sneakers. Brought up by a frugal, Asian father, I was only allowed two pairs of sneakers every school year. Two, because according to him, the other one is a back up if ever I go through the other pair - which means beaten and battered with all my physical extra curricular activities.

I went to a prestigious private, Catholic school back in the Philippines for elementary, high school and college. There's a certain stigma to this school - "school for rich kids." It is partly true. Being a middle class with rich classmates (a.k.a. children of business owners, politicians, etc.) I was envious of some who can afford all the finer things in life. I'm great friends with them and they're good people but I do admit I was jealous of the material things they have.

We have a school uniform, so there wasn't any room for style and trends, except during days where we have PE classes, where we obviously have gym clothes and that means cool sneakers to use. Back in 5th grade, you're a cool kid if you have the newest Nike Air Prestos. That was the thing back then. I remember asking my dad to get me some new sneakers during that time but since the school year has already started and I obviously have my two, new pairs of sneakers, he didn't want to buy me another one. I had to be contented with what I have. Mind you, back then, I did get some cool colorways of Adidas adiPrene since I used to play tennis.

I guess, I've always loved wearing sneakers for the pure comfort that they give me. I'm always on my feet and I love walking and running and exploring my city. Fast forward to high school and college where I didn't really care anymore about getting the coolest and trendiest things like sneakers because there were more important things like school and extra curricular activities and building friendships and relationships with kids my age. I was still in sneakers most of the time but since I'm a teenager at that point of time and a girl if I might add, I had started to wear more heels. Parties, clubs and bars is where I frequented during the weekends and so the need to be sexy in heels prevailed. The only time I wore sneakers was for some school activities and to the gym. I can't even remember what sneakers I wore to the gym and I went almost every single day all throughout college!

And fast forward again to moving to the US and 2 years after college where I dated this guy who's into sneakers. I fell in love again with sneakers. I started getting into it more and I started learning and understanding the culture around it. Although I didn't really collect sneakers I just appreciated it. It wasn't after dating a couple more guys who are huge sneakerheads that really got me into it. Also, the fashion and the trend began to shift during the last couple of years. The AthLeisure lifestyle popped up and for a lot of people, this is nothing really new. People go out and do errands in their athletic gears and that has been going on for decades but with the current generation of Youtubers, Instagrammers and Social Media Influencers, the "Hypebeast" culture became more prominent. AthLeisure and Streetwear became the thing and you're cool if you follow this trend.

Not to say that I'm a cool kid now, I just have deep appreciation for the style and sneaker culture. I am making a huge DISCLAIMER that I am in no way a sneakerhead or an expert on the said topic of sneakers. As with blogging with beauty related topics, I always do my research. Do I pick up every sneaker release? No I don't. One, I'm not rich enough to splurge ridiculous amount of dollars. Two, I don't do it for the hype. I only buy sneakers that I can rock and style. No matter how pretty or hyped a sneaker is, if I don't think I can rock it or incorporate it with my outfits, I would not buy it. I am still practical and if my dad can see the amount of sneakers that I have right now, he would probably flip and would ask me to sell them seeing I'm spending X amount of dollars to get them. But he would also tell me that I can do whatever I want with the money that I earn for myself although I would still get a lecture on being frugal and saving money. ^^

So this is me, and the long ass background story on this new Sneaker page on the blog. I'll tell you a new story with each new sneaker post. I'll tell you juicy stories related to my life, a bit more personal and intimate than my beauty posts which are usually hauls, reviews and makeup tutorials. I hope you come back for this.

With much love,

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Tarteist Pro Glow To Go & Tarteist Pro To Go Review

So again, I've been inconsistent with my blog posts but life gets in the way. I'm not a full time blogger but I blog as a hobby and I love showing my favorite things over social media.

One of my favorite to-go, go-to, makeup is my month old pick up from Sephora, the Tarteist Pro To Go and Pro Glow To Go.

Let me start with the Tarteist Pro Glow To Go. It is a highlight and contour palette with two highlight shades and a bronzer. Gleam is a pearl highlight, Burst is described as a shimmering sand highlight and Chisel is a matte contour shade. Gleam has more of a white cast whereas Burst has more of a golden tone. Chisel is a great bronzer and contour shade for medium skin tones. It has a warm neutral undertone which for my fair/medium skin tone, is great as a summer color. It is a great bronzer to warm up the skin. I think for someone who might be paler than me, this would be too warm of a shade.

The Tarteist Pro To Go Palette features 6 eyeshadows, 3 mattes and 3 shimmery shades. A great neutral on the go palette that can take you day to night, laid back to glam.

Drive is a matte nude shade, comes out slightly pink on my skin tone but still a great all over lid color or transition shade. Stylin is a matte, deep chocolate brown shade. This shade is a great color to deepen your look. I've said this before in a previous blog post, I'm the type of girl who stays away from black eyeshadows and go for the deep brown shades to glam up my looks. Boss is a satin bronze shade. Another great all over lid shade. Hype is a true gold shadow which I love to put in my inner eye corner. Crisp is a warm chestnut brown. Another lovely transition shade for you gals who love warm transition colors. The last color is Dominate, a shimmering raspberry which is a great pop of color if you're tired of all these warm neutral shadows.

The Tarteist Pro To Go actually reminds me of he Anastasia Renaissance Palette only a mini version. I love neutral palettes and this is just perfect for travel.

Both Pro To Go and Pro Glow To Go palettes smell like heavenly chocolate and uses the same Amazonian clay formula as the other Tarte products. 

If there's a downside that I need to mention, it is that you have to always tap your eyeshadow brushes before you apply them on your lids because its so soft, heavily pigmented and creates fallouts that might ruin your base makeup if you have already applied it before doing your eye makeup. I also wish that I have a least one blush shade included in the Glow palette.  Other than that, this two mini palettes has replaced the Kat Von D Shade + Light Palette and the Juvia Nubian Palette that I used to carry with me all the time when I travel.

Monday, March 13, 2017

[Pinky Paradise] Princess Pinky Day Gemini Green Lens Review

Does colored circle lenses and contact lenses look too extreme for you and you're looking for that pretty colored lenses that looks natural and not eerily fake? Well, look no more since Pinky Paradise is now carrying the Princess Pinky Day Gemini Series that will look perfectly natural on your eyes. 

Princess Pinky Gemini has the Day and Night Series.  

The Day Gemini line is bright and subtle at the same time and it brings out a more natural look while the Night Gemini line offers a more vivid, wild, fierce gaze with it's intensity.

Diameter: 14.5mm
Water Content: 42%
Base Curve: 8.8mm
Life Span: 30 days (monthly)
Prescription / -0.00 ~ -10.00

Most circle lenses have 38% water content but the Princess Pinky Gemini lenses have 42%, which means it's more comfortable for the eyes since it has more moisture and is suitable for longer periods of wear than other lenses. Although I still do recommend to only use lenses for a maximum of 8-12 hours since you should let your eyes breathe. This is by no means an extended wear contact lens so don't sleep with it on. Always take off your contact lens before you sleep. If you're going to take a nap, keep the nap as short as possible and if it's longer than 15 minutes, you might as well take off your contact lens. This goes with any contact lens since there can be a lot of complications that comes with excessive wear of contact lens (Circle Lens FAQs). 

Back to the Day Gemini lenses, the one I am reviewing is the Day Green lenses which surprisingly came in a blister pack instead of a vial. 

The lenses are very light in color. It is like a tinted clear lens with dotting around the pupil area and all over the iris area. This speckled design helps give a more natural look. One thing to note about the Day Gemini lenses is the absence of the limbal ring or outer circle design most commonly seen in circle lenses. The limbal ring gives the dolly or big eye look. Because these lenses lack the limbal ring, despite the diameter being 14.5mm, these lenses appear more like your regular, colored contact lens. With it's absence, you lose the wide eyed look and your eyes appear more natural looking especially since the color is light and seems to blend seamlessly with your natural eye color.

This is a closer photo of the lenses worn on my eye. Since the pupil area is clear on the actual lens, you can actually see my natural eye color which is brown. This makes my eyes appear hazel and the dotted design makes it appear as though they are natural eye freckles.

I'm sure that the Day Gemini Green would appear slightly different if you have darker or lighter colored natural eyes than me but amongst the other "natural" looking circle lenses advertised in the market, this is the closest one to being natural. 

I usually don't like regular colored contact lens and prefer circle lenses because they look oddly weird on me (bright, unnatural colored eyes for an Asian) but circle lenses have a way of making colored lenses make less unnatural because of the dolly eyed look. The Day Gemini series steps the game up since it offers colored lenses that looks natural despite it not giving the big eye look.

Comfort is key as well and I find these lenses to be really comfortable to wear for a longer amount of time than other lenses. I would also like to note that this feels thicker on the eyes when I first put it on but I quickly forgot about that a minute later. Most circle lens are thinner and regular contact lenses are thicker, the Princess Pinky is right in between but it is very comfortable to wear. 

Comfort: ♥♥♥/5

The Princess Pinky Gemini Day and Night series is available at Pinky Paradise. A single monthly pair retails for $11.90 and the Princess Pinky Gemini Day or Night Bundle with 4 colored lenses (grey, brown, green, blue) retails for $35.70. 

Important Notice: Currently, Pinky Paradise does not ship to USA and Korea. They ship to all other countries except these two. I will update once they lift this notice or if I find any more information.

Pinky Paradise: We regret to announce the decision to stop shipping to the USA and Korea as of 6th February 2017.

Please understand that orders from the United States are required to comply with the strict state regulations. With all of the restrictions, it’s a painful decision for our team, but a necessary one in order to continue operating until it is perfected and comply with strict state rules.

We’re working out a solution by doing all the necessary steps we can to help the situation.

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused and we look forward to returning in the future.

Thank you

Pinky Paradise has been around since 2006 and is a trusted and renowned online retail merchandiser of trendy circle lens. Their customer service is excellent. Despite this post to be a sponsored blog post, I have previously purchased from Pinky Paradise and I know that they truly deliver and they answer any questions you might have about your purchase or orders. They have 900+ lenses to choose from with authenticity guaranteed. They also offer free shipping to orders over $49.