Polka dot

IMG_1952IMG_1967IMG_2006IMG_1954 IMG_2013My outfit posts are back! It’s been eight weeks since I’ve given birth and I am finally feeling like my old self again. I am not back to my pre-pregnancy weight, and it’s okay. I don’t expect to be back to there yet, not right now anyway. I’m just glad I fit into some of my old clothes again (though I haven’t attempted to wear any of my jeans–they surely don’t fit yet). My outfit of choice is still the shift dress, which I wear with mandals or ballet flats. They just make sense right now, especially when they’re breastfeeding-friendly (anything button-down, stretchy or with a low neckline).

This entire outfit is from Mango: the beige polka dot dress, coral clutch and tan mandals. I love how the bright clutch adds a pop of color to the neutral dress and sandals. This can take me from a lunch meeting to coffee with my girlfriends.

Tricks of the Trade: Top 5 everyday sunscreens

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Hello, Miss Kelly. I am working in the kitchen as sous chef. Wondering what’s best sunscreen for those who have dry skin and how to correctly apply it.

While most people still think that sunscreen should only be worn on the beach, the reality is it has to be applied everyday.  Our skin is subjected to constant UV exposure, and what we don’t see are its long-term, irreversible effects that lead to premature aging and even skin cancer. Yes, the heat isn’t the only thing we should worry about, but the sun’s rays that deliver three types of radiation: UVA has been known to cause premature wrinkles, uneven pigmentation and sagging skin; UVB results in skin reddening and painful sunburns; and UVC rays lead to the formation of skin radicals.

Before you reach for the nearest bottle of sunscreen, know that everyday sun protection need not be as dense, thick and uncomfortable as the ones you use for the beach. These days sunscreen is formulated for easy absorption without the stickiness or the “kabuki effect” we usually have to endure when we apply it. Some brands even make them specifically to be worn underneath makeup, so it has to disappear into skin after applying it. Everyday sunscreen should be wearable, have an SPF of at least 30, and be easily absorbed by the skin.

The best way to apply sunscreen is by spreading it generously on clean skin. Like I mentioned, you want a product that is easily absorbed by your skin so make sure to test the product before purchasing it. If it is too much of a chore, you may not likely continue using it, so choosing the right brand is crucial. Then, apply again after a few hours, especially when you know you will be under the sun. If you’re wearing makeup and you’ve already applied sunscreen underneath it, find a powder that contains SPF so you can easily reapply that and not have to redo your makeup. Another important thing to remember is that your everyday sunscreen should protect against all types of UV rays. These are usually labeled “broad-spectrum” or “multi-spectrum.”

I’ve tried a lot of brands that offer everyday sun protection, but the following wear really well and are effective on my skin. Check out these five great sunscreens:

Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector SPF 42. This oil-free daily sunscreen protects against three major causes of skin cell damage: UV rays, oxidation and overproduction of sebum. I know you mentioned you have dry skin—you need not worry about this product drying it out even more. While it prevents oiliness, it also contains mineral powders and herbal extracts that deliver a pore-free and shine-free finish. This product is lightweight and spreads smoothly on skin, so application is super easy. It offers broad-spectrum protection.

Clarins UV Plus HP Day Screen SPF 40. Apart from its usual sun protection, this product also contains skincare that helps prevent early signs of skin aging. It works by using a 100-percent mineral filter that defends against harmful UV rays and pollution (it has a patented anti-pollution complex). One of its ingredients is organic cantaloupe, which has been known to fight free radicals and DNA damage. The best part about it is sheer, so you can pair it with any moisturizer (a plus for you, since you have dry skin). This sunscreen is also oil-free, which makes it easy to layer makeup on top.

Clinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 25. I know I said your sunscreen should be a minimum of 30, but this is an exemption. This particular product is super sheer and lightweight, you would want to keep applying it everyday. More important, it doesn’t contain chemical sunscreen ingredients, so this is ideal for sensitive skin and for applying near the eye area. It is also broad-spectrum, which means it protects again all UV rays. 

Kiehl’s Super Fluid UV Defense SPF 50+. Apart from being oil-free, fragrance-free, paraben-free and color-free, this sunscreen offers a new optimized combination of sun filters for an even, more lightweight, nongreasy application. It also contains Vitamin E, which is an antioxidant that has been known to prevent free-radical damage. This means your skin gets nourished as you apply it, which is great for dry skin. A plus side to this is that it is water resistant, so it wont slide off your face when you sweat.

Philosophy Hope Oil-Free Moisturizer SPF 30. Since this is a moisturizer and sunscreen in one, it might work best on your skin. It is oil-free, so you don’t have to worry about streaking or melting makeup, and it is formulated with broad-spectrum so it covers all UV rays. What I like best about it is that it contains multiple antioxidants to hydrate and protect skin, which crosses over to skincare. It is also paraben-, sulfate- and synthetic-free.

 

Extinct Sunwear

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It’s not everyday that you come across a worthy and meaningful brand, especially in retail. While most companies are just out to make a buck, there are a few that do it to support a beautiful cause. One such company is Extinct Sunwear, which I got to know when I stumbled upon their SITE. At first I thought it was just another eyewear company, until I read their tagline: Sunglasses That Fight Wildlife Extinction. I couldn’t help but get excited over this. Finally, a brand that promises to fight for animals and preserve their existence! It’s really about time! Something has to be done to raise awareness and preserve our wildlife. Too many senseless animal killings have been happening worldwide due to poaching, habitat loss, wildlife trade and global warming, which is why we must do all we can to put an end to it.

And we can! Founders of Extinct Sunwear, Alex and Kaitlyn are seeking the funds necessary to products its first run of sunglasses. Their site allows us to back up this worthy project and pledge money to get this company running. The contributions will go directly towards getting us our sunglasses or shirt, while supporting the wildlife organizations through 25% of their company’s annual profits, which they will be donating. Any excess funds will be put towards making everything from their glasses to shipping supplies environmentally friendly and good for the earth.

So when Extinct gets the funding it needs, we get to purchase cool retro sunnies and in turn support organizations who have been making an enormous impact on wildlife, like Sea Shepherd and the International Anti-Poaching Foundation. Sounds awesome, right? I really love this idea of shopping for a cause–it allows us to do our part while still looking good in the process.

I was so moved by this cause that I got in touch with Alex and Kaitlyn. They were so nice and accommodating, it made me want to support Extinct Sunwear even more. Scroll down to read more about them.

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Me: Can you tell us about yourselves, Kaitlyn and Alex? What were you doing before you came up with Extinct Sunwear?

Kaitlyn: Absolutely! I’ve been on the path of studying psychology as a way to understand the similarities between human and animal behavior. I’ve always had a huge interest in working alongside and protecting these animals in the wild, so I’ve spent a lot of my time in the last couple of years learning and appreciating the natural world and all of It’s inhabitants.

Alex: I’m a web designer but also huge on young people empowerment and social enterprises. I’ve started a non-profit out of the Santa Cruz area called Changebound, that aims to help socially conscious young entrepreneurs by providing working space and resources. Kate and I are also die hard adventurers and water lovers, so we do our best to get out and scuba or paddle board as much as possible.

Me: Protecting endangered animals is definitely a great cause, can you tell us what was the defining moment when you decided you had to do something about our current situation?

Kaitlyn: I’ve pretty much always appreciated and had a passion for protecting animals. Once I really began to understand the fact that humans were responsible for the soaring extinction rates among wildlife from documentaries like “Revolution” and “The Cove”, I knew I wanted to step in and make efforts to reverse that.

Alex: Good question! Like Kaitlyn said, I think the defining moment was when Kate and I watched the Cove together. Kate had been an avid wildlife advocate so these issues had always been a topic of discussion for us, but that documentary really made the entire picture click in my head. From there my interest grew and I continued to learn about all the other horrendous activities across the globe. It became pretty apparent that the consequences for our actions as humans will be catastrophic if we don’t start making changes.

Me: Can you tell us how you plan to manufacture Extinct Sunwear products? Like what materials will you be using and how will you ensure these will be environmentally friendly?

Of course! Our goal is to refine our manufacturing process as much as possible to create the most sustainable products we possibly can. As soon as we are able to hit the minimums, we’ll be utilizing recycled plastic for our sunglasses and organic cotton for our shirts. As of now, each pair of shades is shipped in an organic cotton sleeve, eco-friendly burlap pouch, and cardboard based box. We’re also seeking manufacturing certifications to insure completely clean processes across the board.

Me: What sort of designs can we expect from your first collection? For sunnies and shirts?

We’re all about fashion and timelessness. We’re young, and our goal is to make conservation stylish and cool so you can expect some new school retro and also a few unique designs that we think everyone will really love.

Me: Where will you be selling Extinct Sunwear? Just online or will you have physical stores?

For now, and immediately after the kickstarter, we’ll be purely online so that you can get a pair of Extincts wherever you are in the world. We would love to have a flagship store at some point in the future, and are already looking into a few different retail outlets for both our clothes and sunglasses.

Me: How much of your profit are you planning to donate?

We’ll be donating 25% of each sale to our two organizations: Sea Shepherd and The International Anti Poaching Foundation. That’s a little over $7 per pair of sunglasses going towards animal conservation.

Me: Off topic: Have you been to the Philippines? 

Unfortunately no… But it’s pretty high up there on our bucket list! The culture seems incredible and the diving is supposedly magnificant, maybe you can show us around as soon as we can get over there. :)

Me: How are you doing in terms of following your timeline? Are things progressing as planned?

We’re doing great so far and it’s mainly just a matter of continuing to spread the word so we can reach our goal! We’ve had a ton of positive feedback, so we’re hopeful that we can at the very least aid in raising awareness for the critical issues we need all need to pay attention to.

Tricks of the Trade: Make your eyeliner smudge-proof

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My eyeliner always gets smudged. I’ve used pencil and liquid eyeliner and even tried setting them with black eye shadow but nothing seems to work. How do I make my liner smudge-free? –KC Anne Santos

Unless your plan is to look like a ghoul for Halloween, smudged eyeliner is a no-no. It is one of the most common makeup problems, and is probably one of the most asked beauty questions, at least for my column. Personally, this is my biggest makeup issue because my eyeliner always smudges (even at shoots, which is why I always have to warn my makeup artists). For a time I was resolved to not wearing eyeliner until I found a way to prevent it from smearing, which meant my eyes were less defined and pretty for some years, not counting the times when I had a makeup artist to do it for me.

It seems we’ve all had our fair share of eyeliner woes. One too many times we’ve caught a glimpse of our reflection with streaky eye makeup (or simply, raccoon eyes) and since made a conscious effort to avoid this embarrassing fiasco. The lot of us are prone to this, as our eyes get oily throughout the day and cause our eyeliners to slide and settle into our under eye area. But as much as a touch-up is necessary after a few hours, our makeup should never be all over the place.

Before you store your favorite eyeliners for good, just as I did, know that there are ways to smudge-proof your makeup. It took me some practice and a lot of help from top makeup artists, but I finally learned the secrets to creating sultry, lined eyes that last for hours. Here are some easy tips you can follow to make smudged liner a thing of the past.

Try the smudge-proof test. I used to think that all eyeliners are the same; and that the only differences were probably in the color and the brand. But as I was out to find the perfect smudge-proof liner, I discovered the distinction—consistency, glide and resistance all mattered. The only way to know if your eyeliner has all three qualities is if you try it on the back of your hand and notice the following: how well the liner draws, whether it distributes an equal proportion as you line it, how it feels against the skin and how long it stays on when you rub it. When you start comparing one liner against the other, then you’ll see how much better the other fares. This requires a lot of trial and testing, which is actually the fun part. Because once you’ve found your smudge-proof liner, you’ll know you’ve found gold.

Use a makeup primer. As our busy day progresses, we barely notice how much activity our eyes make. With all that blinking, our eye area becomes oily and our eyes may begin to water. This causes our makeup to move and smudge, especially if we’ve used a medium to full-coverage foundation. Makeup primer or base prevents all that from happening, as it acts like a bridge between skincare and makeup. It keeps skin moisturized without getting oily, and allows makeup to adhere better. This means makeup stays in place for a much longer time, which is what you need to prevent your liner from smudging. This extra step makes a big difference, and will keep the rest of your makeup fresh from morning to evening.

Load on more powder. You were on the right track by setting your liner with black eye shadow. I still recommend you do that, but don’t forget to set your entire eye area, too. Aside from the primer, face powder (whether you prefer to use pressed or loose) will keep your eyes from getting oily or watery. This does it by setting your makeup, which means it won’t be moving or smudging in the next couple of hours. Applying a lot more powder will prevent smudging, just remember to use a big, fluffy brush to remove the excess.

Know where to apply liner. Where you apply your eyeliner also makes a difference. If you are used to drawing liner on top of your eye shadow, maybe you can try applying it on your inner lash line instead, which is what most makeup artists do to create a more natural definition. This may require practice though, but it really does make your eyes appear bigger. The right way to do this is by gently lifting your upper lid and drawing on the line right under your eyelashes (this is why consistency and glide are so important).

Oh! Brighter Days x Heima

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I absolutely love this collection! It is so fun and happy!!! Looking at these photos brightens up my day, and yes, I want these in my home.

Oh! Brighter Days is a creative collaboration between Googly Gooeys and Heima Home and Lifestyle. These brands are all about bright hues and personality, and they made their mark by adding fun colors to unique home pieces. This collection is a flurry of bright colors, spontaneity of brush stokes, and the occasional monochromatic wall art. And it seems they’ve got everything covered, as they have a happy selection of furniture, notebooks and pillows for us to swoon over.

For more information, email sales@heimastore.com and visit their Instagram pages: @heimastore @googlygooeys.

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Gold + charcoal in a toothbrush

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My GOLD wish list from Net-a-porter.com (1-7): (1) Alice + Olivia tevin racer-back lame mini dress, (2) Stella McCartney Falabella metallic faux leather shoulder bag, (3) Alexander McQueen gold-tone Swarovski crystal and faux pearl ring, (4) Marni gold-plated earrings, (5) Givenchy Shark Tooth necklace in gold and silver-tone brass, (6) Jimmy Choo Teira metallic ayers and mirrored-leather sandals, (7) Larsson & Jennings CM gold-plated watch, (8) Colgate 360° Gold Charcoal Toothbrush

I look around my room and notice bits of gold here and there. I see my favorite ring, which was given to me by my dad when I was in high school; a pair of strappy sandals that I wore the other day (they’re not actual gold but it’s close enough); and a sparkly dress in my closet that I’ve never worn because I’ve been saving it for a special occasion (also not made of real gold and yes, I might never get to wear it at the rate I’m going). Gold is definitely beautiful (the color and the metal), which is why we are likely to find it in our jewelry box, closet and furniture. The last place you would probably expect to find gold is in your toothbrush. At least that’s what I thought too, until I received my first gold toothbrush from Colgate.

Yes, you read correctly. Colgate recently came out with the prettiest gold-colored toothbrush and nope, the gold is not just an aesthetic–the bristles actually help inhibit bacterial growth on the brush itself. It’s called the Colgate 360° Gold Charcoal Toothbrush, and it introduces the gold class experience for a whole mouth clean. It features an elegant metallized handle and a rubber grip, and has charcoal-infused bristles that are shaped into spirals for better surface stain removal. It even has dentist-like polishing cups to help remove more plaque and stains and tapered tip bristles that are 17x slimmer than regular rounded-end brushes for a deeper clean between teeth and along the gum line. Plus it has a cheek and tongue cleaner at the back of the toothbrush head to ensure a whole mouth clean (love how they thought of everything).

The Colgate 360° Gold Charcoal Toothbrush works on the four key areas of the mouth – the teeth, tongue, cheeks, and gums – to ensure a whole mouth clean that only Colgate can deliver. Indulge in the golden lifestyle and reap the benefits of the first and only toothbrush worth more than its weight in gold in features. Colgate 360° Gold Charcoal Toothbrush: the gold class in superior whole mouth clean. #Colgate360GoldClass

Colgate 360° Gold Charcoal Toothbrush is priced at P199 for single and P298 for twin (when you buy 1 you get the 2nd at 50% off) available at leading supermarkets, drugstores and department stores nationwide. 

Discover beauty online shop: Superberry.me

It is no big secret that I LOVE online shopping. It is easy, convenient and I can do it in my pajamas at 3am while snacking on chips, or cookies, or both. While I usually shop for clothes, shoes, accessories and baby stuff, there are days when all I search for are beauty products (I need my fix). Take for instance this past week–it has been all about discovering new makeup brands and researching cult favorites. It must be because I don’t leave the house often (breastfeeding duties) and I kind of miss my trips to my favorite makeup counters. I admit it is a different experience, as I don’t get to try on the makeup or test the creams, but it is a happy and fulfilling experience nonetheless as it usually involves hours of research which leads to great discoveries. This is when I get out of my beauty comfort zone and experiment with new makeup brands, lipstick shades and beauty innovations.

One online shopping site I’ve recently discovered is Superberry.me. It is a brand new concept store from Singapore that provides ladies with a one-stop solution for their grooming and personal care needs. It is highly curated, with brands sourced from all over the world and it is honestly a great place to find new brands to try. The site carries more than 500 products from over 50 brands (really, I can spend ALL NIGHT here), including Anna Sui, Jurlique, Klairs, and Glo Minerals, as well as Ghassan, FemmeScience, Margherita Ghel, Storyderm Mark and Denman Brushes.

Last week, I was on the lookout for new mascara, waterproof eyeliner and blusher. And so I got on Superberry.me and found these amazing brands: BLINC and GAYA. I followed my gut feel (and did a bit of research online) and bought these three: Blinc Eyeliner Pencil in Grey, Blinc Mascara Amplified in Dark Brown and Gaya Mineral Blush in BF-1. I am so happy with my purchases, I will definitely stalk this site again soon!

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Of course, I had to give the products a go. Here I am trying on the eyeliner and mascara. I already applied the blusher earlier and wasn’t able to take a photo (genius, I know). Anyway, I hope you like how it turned out. I sure did!

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Visit http://www.superberry.me for more amazing beauty finds. They ship worldwide!

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Oh and if you’re looking for an online grooming site for men, be sure to visit http://www.whathewants.com.sg. They also have a great selection of products.

#ProTech101 Part 4: Using the Android OS on your device

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This week, I’ve kept you guys updated with Globe’s online security campaign aimed to inform and protect us from online crimes that are rampant in this crazy cyber age. From targeting and shooting down common mistakes that we make such as weak passwords, information sharing and autosaving information.

Now Globe brings us Part 4 of the #PROTECH101 series. #PROTECH101 Part 4 locks on the Android flaw called Stagefright. Disguised in the form of an MMS, Stagefright can easily access your device’s data even without you opening the message (scary)! Protect your Android device (follow the tips above) and lessen the chances of being victimized by these online crimes. Lets stay informed! :)

Tricks of the Trade: Best makeup to wear with a red dress

Hi! I will be attending my friend’s wedding at the end of the month, and I’ll be one of her bridesmaids. I’m planning to do my own hair and makeup on that day. What makeup will be best on this occasion? I have a medium to dark skin tone. By the way, their motif will be red rose. Thanks a lot! –Jonah

I’m sure we can all agree that red is a gorgeous color for a bridesmaid dress (kudos to the bride for an impressive color motif). It is dramatic and eye-catching, but for some can be a difficult color to pull off. Red translates to power and confidence, which can be intimidating to wear. Definitely not for shy wallflowers, the scarlet color requires its wearer to be bold and beautiful (again, confidence is key). Needless to say, your makeup and hair should perfectly complement your dress.

Not many of us realize that wearing red requires a new set of makeup rules. You see, red being the striking color it is can change the tone of our skin, making it appear pallid or washed-out. And depending on its shade and undertone, can give darker skin a grayish cast. The solution to this is simple: avoid looking ghostly or washed-out by adding a healthy dose of color to your cheeks and lips or create a contrast by defining your eyes. Now, if you’re not quite sure whether you’ve applied too much or too little makeup, simply wear your red dress. Right away, you’ll see how your dress changes your skin tone and you can adjust your makeup accordingly. Lastly, before you decide on your makeup look, remember the tried-and-tested makeup rule: focus on one feature at a time. This will help you avoid creating a look that’s clownish or overdone. As obvious as this tip is, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to go overboard with makeup when you’re wearing red.

For foolproof red dress makeup ideas, I looked to no less than Hollywood’s red carpet stars. Read on for easy looks you can follow that will no doubt make you standout at the wedding.

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Try red on red. If you think about it, wearing red lipstick with a red dress should be written off as a makeup no-no. But there is just something so right about it—you can say, it just works. The trick to doing it right is to find a shade of lipstick that matches the color of your dress. Take it from its undertone: match the shade of red to its tone whether it’s more yellow or orange, blue or brown. For your morena skin, it’s red with blue and brown undertones that complement you most. Makeup inspiration: Jessica Alba

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Go nude. Nude makeup, that is. An easy palette of rich browns, grays and beiges looks beautiful when worn with a red dress. This kind of makeup works well with practically any color, and can be used for most occasions. The only problem you might encounter with nude makeup is its tendency to make skin look grayish or pale, when worn with red. Counter this with a sweep of rosy blusher on your cheeks. Makeup inspiration: Jessica Lowndes

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Experiment with a smoky eye. A dark smoky eye is a great eye-opener, meaning it gives eyes gorgeous definition. This may just be what you need to balance the vibrant color of your dress. Blacks and grays are your best bets for eye shadows, in shimmery and matte finishes. Remember that blending is key here, so be sure to use your eye shadow brushes. To make your eyes appear bigger, line your eyes using black kohl eyeliner and apply three coats of mascara to your lashes. Makeup inspiration: Mila Kunis