Thursday, February 26, 2015

I made a huge mistake yesterday

Yesterday was Kanta-Kwento's Press Launching. It's an album produced by Muzic'sKool and my band GAP69 is part of the album.

Media Kit

my band's description :) 

I wanted to look good. So I invested time in doing my make up. When I bought a Naked 3 palette two months ago, it came with a freebie Urban Decay primer. I have been using it ever since and have been very satisfied with its result so far. 

Yesterday was different though, While applying the primer on my brows and eyelids, I put a little too much that I had to spread some parts of it on my eye bags and on the side of my eyes. Then I thought, oh wow, this could make a great concealer! -- BIG MISTAKE. It made my face look like a walking cake. Yummy but not acceptable. LOL.  

Sorry I had to make this face so that you can see the creases clearly. 
Wrinkles and eyebags EVERYWHERE!

If you noticed, my face was not flawless at all. The primer highlighted my eye bags, wrinkles and it made a lot of creases -- THE HORROR!  I took selfies with my normal face but you can still see that the primer was not "normal looking" like how I wanted my prepped up face to look. 

To be fair, I took these photos 10 hours after putting my make up on. The eyebrows, eyeshadows and eyeliner are still there which means the primer did its job. However, I am in no way, making a primer my concealer again. Like, EVER! 

Wrapping up this blog with the album's artists and press people from yesterday's presscon. 

Artists featured in Kanta Kwento's Album: 

1. Jizelle Dea Formilleza
2. Jet Tacsanan
3. Archie Uduando 
4. Shaira Opsimar
5. GAP69
6. Cacho Ferrero (Arranger)
7. Juliet Bahala
8. Y-Fi
9. Julia Serad
10. Rigel Micolob
11. Fusion Juice 
12. Jeremy Sarmiento (Composer) 

Artists with the press people

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Everyday glowing look using drugstore make-ups

When I posted a selfie four days ago, a Facebook friend complimented on how great my skin is. I do have a fair skin, at least fairer than the average Filipino color but it's definitely far from perfect, I just know the right products to use for my everyday make-up.

The selfie that launched this blog lol 

I only use my "expensive" make-ups (mac, urban decay, lancome) on special occasions but for my daily do, I use my favorite drugstore make-ups.  

The BEFORE look 

Here are the list of products that I use to achieve my everyday glowing look: 

1. Evian facial spray (Php 199.00) 

It's an inexpensive primer that doesn't make your face look too "cakey". Nobody wants a cakey face. Also, Philippines has a normally warm weather, this facial spray hydrates your skin for 8 hours. So no matter how stressed out you can get, this spray can help you look radiant all day, everyday. 

2. Celeteque matte moisturizer with SPF 30 (Php 230.00) 

Whoever invented this product deserves a noble prize! No? Okay. but give that brilliant person a gerderm prize! I discovered this product only three months ago and it was inside a bank. I was opening an account and I couldn't help but notice how radiant the skin is of the teller that was assisting me. I could tell that she's using a foundation or whatever because her neck area was not as radiant as her face (P.S. don't make that mistake) but I was staring at her the whole time, trying to figure out the product that she's using. I badly needed to know because she was literally glowing that I had to stop her in the middle of our transaction and asked for the magic potion. I immediately took a mental note and went straight to the mall after to buy it. What took me by surprise was how affordable Celeteque is! 

This is how it looks with box

the bottle

I usually let the product dry on my face by facing the fan after applying before putting on a lose powder (face powder is okay to use too) so that the product will sit better. A small amount will do to cover the whole facial area. I am still using the first bottle that I bought three months ago.

3. Nichido eyebrow pencil (Php 60.00) 

I use the intense bronze shade because it suits best with my skin color. It is important that you know the shade that blends well with your skin and hair color. Don't hesitate to play with the testers provided. Buy the best shade that won't make you look like a Cara-Delevingne-Wanna-Be-Gone-Wrong.

me, some 3 years ago using the wrong shade and wrong eyebrow shape. Hahaha! No, just NO! 

4. Nichido eyeliner (Php 68.00) 

Been using this product for 6 years now because it is easy to use, manage and its CHEAP! When used everyday, it will last for up to 3 months. It is not waterproof though so think twice when crying with this product on. 

bought this 5 months ago, still alive and kickin! lol 

5. IN2IT sheer shimmer blush (Php 375.00) 

I love this product because it doesn't easily come off plus it's an instant highlighter.



6. Ever Bilena matte lipstick, Pink Flame shade (Php 145.00) 

My favorite drugstore lipstick! 

almost retiring

For me, the key to getting the best everyday look is to always strive for the "natural" look. Remember that not everything is "hiyang" for our skin. What may work for me, may not work for you. It took me awhile to find the products that are best for my face and skin type. Also, since I have a passion for make-ups, I dedicated some of my extra hours to research on make up reviews and tutorials. 

Physical beauty is nothing without a beautiful heart and personality but why not have both if you can. 

Take it from Gerald Butler from the movie The Ugly Truth 

the AFTER look

Capping this blog with the side by side before and after grid for a better comparison.

The selfies posted were not filtered to give you the exact result.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

My Tacloban community immersion experience (PART 1)

In my previous blog, I wrote about my recent trip to Tacloban as one of the medical team volunteers for the Papal 2015 visit which was organized by Balsa and the SAMIN sisters (Sisters Association in Mindanao). We stayed in Tacloban for 6 days and one of the activities is the community immersion.

The Beginning

Along with the members of SAMIN sisters, we were divided into five groups to be dispersed to different communities in Tacloban. My group was assigned to Brgy. Cogon, Tanauan. We were supposed to leave at 3pm, but because of some transportation problems, we left the city around 7PM.

My group: from right, our guide Ate Gina, Sir Dolping, Sister Skola, Sister Ali, the group leader Sister Mafe, Sister Sharon, Sister Maris, Sister Didith and Father Ruben. Excited! 

It was almost 9PM when we arrived in Brgy. Cogon. The first thing I noticed was the immense darkness. There were no street lights and only few of the houses had electricity where a single light bulb serves the whole house. Our car stopped in front of a house where a group of people are eagerly smiling and seemed very excited to meet us. After we gathered our things, we were led to a house where a group of families were waiting for us. Since it was already late, we quickly introduced ourselves and picked our sponsors. Sponsors are families that will adopt us for the night. Since there were 8 of us, we divided ourselves into four groups so that each of the families will have at least two of us. I was partnered with Sister Maris.

Sister Maris with the family that adopted her and Ate Gina (our guide), far left white shirt. 

The Conflict 

Sister Maris and I's sponsor family immediately had us rest in their house. While they were preparing our bed, an old lady in her 70's, carrying a big flashlight came to talk to us. She was wondering why she didn't receive any visitors. She got dismayed by that because she already prepared food by 1 pm, expecting us to arrive at 4pm and that she would be adopting some people for the night.

While I focused my attention on putting some comforters on our makeshift bed so that my body won't ache and charging my tablets to my powerbank, sister Maris was busy apologizing to the old lady, explaining that there were only eight of us instead of 15 and so the group only needed 4 houses. The old lady who was obviously upset and wouldn't budge, wouldn't take no for an answer. To my horror, sister Maris asked if I can go with the old lady and sleep at her house.

At the risk of sounding like a total drama queen, I almost wanted to cry when I heard the question. It was my first community immersion, I didn't know a single soul in the area, the only person familiar to me was Sister Maris whom I met roughly two days before so she was basically still a stranger to me, electricity was not a popular need, and one important lesson I learned from watching horror films filmed in remote areas is to never leave your partner. If you die, you must die together.

When the old lady pleaded for us to at least eat the food that she prepared for dinner, we finally gave in to her request to her delight. Nanay's house was no different from our sponsor's house. It has the same size and design. Sister Mariz then explained that the house was a donation from The UN Refugee Agency.

Blanket with the UNHCR logo

First thing that Nanay did was to re-heat the instant pancit canton when we arrived at her house. She kept on apologizing for the inconvenience and for the absence of electricity that we had to repeatedly assure her that it's not a problem. I was not really hungry but I had to eat what Nanay served to show respect. While eating, I noticed a Gardenia loaf bread on the table. Minutes later, Nanay offered us the bread, pointing out that she had to travel to the nearest town to buy that special bread for her visitors to eat. Not for her, only for the visitors. Visitors deserves the best, she said. My heart immediately melted. Judging her living condition, a Gardenia loaf bread must have cost her a lot. When Sister Maris asked me again if I can sleep at Nanay's house, I finally agreed after negotiating to have Ate Gina (our guide) to be with me.

The bread that nanay bought for us. Credits to the owner of the pic. Got this from Google. 

I guess I got melodramatic with the whole thing because Nanay (I forgot her name) was nothing but a hospitable human being. She gave us the best sheets to sleep on that I didn't even need to set my comforter, she gave us her smoothest downy smelling blanket, and she set us a mosquitero.

The mosquitero. You can almost see everything inside the house in this pic

Our bed for he night.

The house was so small that when you get out of the mosquitero, you can already see the dining table.

To my delight, Nanay served us nilagang kamote, fried fish, fried egg and bought us a "special" coffee which is Cafe Blanca by Kopiko.

I got guilty eating breakfast though because I heard nanay earlier that morning asking the fish vendor if she can score half a kilo of fish and pay it in the next days. I wanted to pay for the fish but stopped myself because she might take it as an insult. On our orientation the night before, we were informed that it is their happiness to serve the visitors. We must not show any signs of pity. I however took a mental note to ask Sister Maris if I can give Nanay some money before we go. I was not able to take a picture of Nanay because I got too engrossed talking to her that I didn't realize that it was already time to go to the  community chapel for the Psycho Social Intervention with the children of the community which I am going to talk about on my next blog. 

Do's and Don'ts when in a community immersion
(This list is made only from what I observed and learned during the activity)


1. Respect - "When in Rome, act like a Roman." Easier said than done but this is a must when in a community immersion especially in a place where a tragic event took place. Most of these people are traumatized, they are usually sensitive with things. (i.e) If they eat using their hands, eat using your hands too.

2. Observe. This is what I lacked when Nanay first expressed her disappointments of not getting any visitors. I was even annoyed. And that's where I failed. I failed to observe her needs of having someone at her house, of her efforts not being dump in the drains. Looking back, I wish I didn't have to make her plea for our presence.

3. Listen. These people have gone through so much that having someone to listen to them and empathize with them is already a big help. I realized this when we spent hours of talking about Typhoon Yolanda, of how the government failed to help them, of how oppressed they are. I am usually the talkative type, but that night, I just listened. And I know, it somehow helped them unload their baggages.


1. Ask  - There's nothing wrong in asking but when you ask for a spoon and fork when there is obviously non, putting the sponsor in an uncomfortable situation is a big no no. It's asking things like that and the likes.

2. Be stubborn - I admit, I am guilty on this one. I almost did not give in to Sister Maris's request to sleep in Nanay's house. I might have missed the chance of making an old lady happy. So don't. Just don't. Refer to Do's #1. 

3. Pry - Pry, as in, asking the head of the family why he has 5 children when he's earning a meager salary. We are there to make them feel good, not to lecture them on their life choices.

The Realizations

The immersion was definitely a life learning experience. It made me think about my shallow problems like worrying about my almost emptied mac lipstick, when these families worry about what to eat and will they be able to buy fish for their meals the next day. Then again, I realized that we all have to cope with situations that's given to us. That's why we all have comfort zones. If you put a CEO of a software company in a farm, give him a mud tractor to ply the soils, he may figure out how to turn it on but he will never be able to use it like a pro. It will take days, even months for him to be comfortable with the heat of the sun, the mud's feel on his well pedicured feet and the weight of the tractor, but he will always long for his computers. Same with a farmer, if you put him in the CEO's office, he may know how to turn on the computers but it will take him months or even years to muster the codes and he will at some point wish he was still plying soils.

While the people in that community work hard everyday to put food on the table and eat three times a day, I work everyday to put food on the table, send my children to private schools, buy things that I want, have fun with my friends and it will never be enough, because that's my comfort zone. Being in constant battle with life. Life in that community may be simple, all you had to do is work to eat but I will never survive that life choice. I will die miserably, wishing I was running the world instead of settling for less, at least for me.

While I liked the experience, it is not my comfort zone but I will definitely be doing it again at least once or twice a year to keep me grounded. 

Here's a picture of me and a very cute baby from the community to cap this blog. 

hashtag no filter, no make-up. lol