Wednesday Musing: When Life Happens

 

A photo posted by Roxanne C. (@lacedivory) on



 

You know how sometimes your gut tells you something’s up even when it hasn’t happened yet? Yeah, I’m sure you get what I mean, especially if your sixth sense is strong like mine. The past 2 weeks have been crazy – it seemed as though everything happened all at once.

 

There were some problems at work, which made me feel quite disillusioned about teaching in our local education system (another tale for another day). Over that same weekend, my grandmother passed away. Two days later, I had a beauty shoot to do. One day after that, I delivered my first ever eulogy, and couldn’t have been more grateful to have a couple of my closest friends come and listen to how great my grandmother was to us. Needless to say, the cremation was a horrid and painful affair, no matter how unavoidable it was. One day after the cremation, Monsieur Ratatouille and I received news from our landlord that we had to move out of our current apartment. And then the day after that, I had another shoot to do for a second upcoming project.

 

Could life get any more dramatic?

 
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Wednesday Musing: How Far Would You Go to Get What You Need?

 

Sara Happ The Lip Crayons Set (Limited Edition) - Laced Ivory

 

I recently bought this Sara Happ “The Lip Crayons” Limited Edition Set online because it was Sara Happ and limited edition. Without thinking to first read reviews on Beauty Bay, where I bought my items from, I made the payment and excitedly waited for the package to arrive.

 

When it didn’t arrive within the 10 days as it promised on its website, I started getting anxious and found out, probably a tad too late, that Beauty Bay has pretty mixed reviews on their customer service and deliveries/shipping. At that point, all I could do was pray, especially since I had opted for the cheapest shipping option that didn’t provide a tracking number.

 

Luckily for me, it arrived the next working day. Although I wasn’t home and had to claim the package at the post office in the end, I was just glad my package arrived. It didn’t come intact though – the box my items were packed in had been damaged and SingPost had professionally placed everything inside a sealed plastic bag with a note stating that the package had been received in Singapore in that damaged state.

 

That brings me to today’s Wednesday Musing post. What would you do, or what are you willing to go through, just to get what you really need? Would you, like me, just jump straight at any opportunity to get it without thinking, or would you weigh all options even though time seems to be running out (maybe because of time-based sales, or an expiring discount code)? In my haste, I had risked my mail getting lost in shipment but I think never again will I be so ready to do something as silly as this.

 
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Tip of the Day: How to Incorporate Copper into Your Office

 

How to Incorporate Copper in Your Office - Laced Ivory

 

Getting out of bed in the morning and then heading to work shouldn’t have to feel like a chore. In fact, if you’ve got things in order, heading to the office should be something to look forward to each day.

 

To make it easier, look around you as you settle into your work desk for the day. If there were things you could change – and most of the time, it’s definitely possible – what would you change? Perhaps some clutter needs to be cleared, old motivational posters need to be taken down, or you need some table plants (try terraniums). And if you’ve got a home office, lucky you, there’s more room for improvement!

 

If you’re looking to remodel things a little, how about something sleeker and more sophisticated? Here are some of my tips on how you can incorporate copper into your office.

 
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Link Love: The Makeup Artist Interview Bible

 

Marble Bathroom

I’d die to have a bathroom like Bobbi Brown’s.

 

So the weekend is coming but it isn’t near enough yet. And the last thing you need right now is to see how amazing someone’s home looks like while you slog your days away with no end in sight – and with no granite counter top to aim for.

 

But that’s OK. Because almost everybody who has that luxurious granite counter top worked their asses off for it. And in today’s Link Love blog entry, I’m sharing 9 interviews with makeup artists who are at the top of their game. Find out how they have gotten where they are now and the tips they give to everybody else like us.

 
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Review: The PHB Ethical Beauty Skin Repair Gel with Aloe & Lavender

 

PHB Ethical Beauty Skin Repair Gel

 

It wasn’t only yesterday that I became quite aware of skin-loving products that were made ethically and contained ingredients that weren’t doubtful. In the past 1-2 years, the skin on my calves seemed to have become more sensitive than it had always been, and I started developing eczema patches here and there. Suddenly, I could no longer use shower gels from the many brands I used to love, because they would just make the condition worse.

 

In the past couple of months, I’ve been on the search for skin-repairing products that would make my eczema go away and return me the healthy skin that I used to have. I was asked if I wanted to give PHB Ethical Beauty a try and one of the products I was recommended was the Skin Repair Gel with Aloe & Lavender.

 

The gel itself comes in a 120ml glass tub with a metal lid that screws shut.  It is hand made in the UK, like all the other products from the brand, and contains natural and organic ingredients. A quick look at their short ingredient list shows organic aloe vera as the second ingredient on the list after water. Now we’re talking.

 

Ingredient List:

Aqua, Aloe Barbadensis (Organic Aloe Vera), Vegetable Glycerine, Lavendula Angustifolia Flower Distillate, Sclerotium Gum, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Xanthin Gum, Coco-caprylate, Propandiol & Salix Alba, Lavendula Angustifolia (Lavender) and Benzyl Alcohol. Occurs naturally: Geraniol, Limonene and Linalool.

 

The gel smells quite strongly of lavender the moment you open it, though it dissipates quite fast once applied. Because it has aloe vera in it, it does have an immediate cooling effect on the skin even when left to store at room temperature. Which makes sense, seeing that this gel is meant for skin that is irritated, inflamed, sun burnt or suffering from eczema. The gel calms the skin down and leaves behind a thin, lightweight, silky smooth feel. When applied on inflamed skin that itches, it immediately stops the itch. I think it would be good to give this a try on mosquito bites. It can be used on the face as well, as aloe vera helps to soothe acne if you suffer from it.

 

As for the other ingredients in the list, they seem fine to me as well. Glycerine is very commonly used as a base in soaps. All the gums you see are used as emulsifiers and thickeners, but since this gel is quite flowy in nature, I don’t think a high concentration of the gums is used. Coco-caprylate (a natural ingredient) is what helps the gel to spread well and hydrate the skin, and gives the skin its silky effect after applying. I love it!

 
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Wednesday Musing: A Classic Fragrance in a Cocktail

 

Chanel Cocktail with Laurent Greco Perrier Masterclass

 

When Coco Chanel was presented with a lineup of fragrances by perfumer Ernest Beaux, each one numbered after the one before, she picked the fifth one in the line. That’s how the name of the classic Chanel No. 5 came about and is still loved by many of us today.

 

While I very much prefer a younger, less sophisticated scent – my classic is the Coco Mademoiselle – a recent Perrier masterclass with mixologist Laurent Gréco showed me that even when it comes to the cocktail hour, most women can’t resist a longtime Chanel favourite in their drink. Even if it’s just temporarily encased in a smoky bubble above the glass of rosy liquid, a Chanel fragrance is still, after all, a Chanel fragrance.

 
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New on the Beauty Counter: The Guerlain Météorites Base in its Pink Perfection

 

Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Makeup

 

The long weekend that just passed gave us some time to rearrange our furniture at home, and what better time than this to prop up my art work of La Petite Robe Noire? I know it’s not fantastic on canvas but she has a tutu skirt, and that’s all that matters.

 

I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but Guerlain recently launched their La Petite Robe Noire Makeup Collection along with their SS 2016 makeup collection. I can’t get enough of the Météorites Base Perfecting Pearls Anti-Dullness (available on Nordstrom here) – the pastel pink and white combination has me weak in the knees. When applied on the skin, it leaves a super smooth finish that’s slightly shimmery and very romantic. Although it is a silicon-based product, it’s pretty lightweight so you don’t feel as though your skin can’t breathe.

 

Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Makeup

 

And if that doesn’t inspire you to live life a la Parisienne, you need to check out the 20 new lip colours in their pretty new packaging. 007 Black Perfecto is my favourite of the lot because it looks black in the tube – or at least a deep, burnt indigo – but when applied on the lips, it ends up being just a light purplish or pinkish stain, depending on the shade of your natural lips.

 

Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Makeup

 

But perhaps the one thing that’s got me missing Paris the most is this book by Jennifer L. Scott: “Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris.” I just can’t put it down, so pardon me for being slightly late with my recent blog posts while I relive France in my mind, imaginary vintage dressing table and all.

 

Oh yes but how could I forget. If you’ll like to know the ingredients in the Météorites Base Perfecting Pearls Anti-Dullness, here they are.

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Wednesday Musing: My Top 5 Beauty Priorities

 

Top 5 Beauty Priorities

 

Life is all about making priorities. Our priorities change from time to time, depending on what is important to us at any moment in our lives. But there are some priorities that are here to stay, either for the next 10 days or the next 10 years.

 

Here are my current top 5 beauty priorities.

 

1. Good Skin

Good skin has always been a great concern of mine. I used to be a sufferer of really bad acne, some of which was cystic, while growing up. Even when I grew into adulthood, they never truly went away. If not for hormone regulating pills, I wouldn’t have the skin that I do today. And for me, that’s OK. Not everyone is born with flawless-skin genetics, so we just have to deal with it in our own ways.

I foresee that sometime in the near future, I’m going to have to slowly wean myself off this medication for specific periods of time, and a part of me is quite worried about what things are going to be like when that happens. I suppose with the invention of beauty cleansing tools (I currently use the Clarisonic Mia and am totally smitten by what it has done for me), good skincare products, a good diet, a regular skincare routine, enough rest and optimism, I can continue to have the skin that I wish for.

 

2. Brows

Oh dear me, wherever my brows went after I was born is a mystery. Actually, I’m not sure I actually had them proper. My brows are the finest you can get out there, never mind the fact that my hair is typically Asian-dark.

Brows can make or break a look, and I learnt this quite the hard way. Looking back at some of my very first beauty looks, where my brows were completely unfilled, I still cringe today. Nowadays, my daily look includes filling them in with some soft brow powder, so I feel somewhat better that people sitting at the far end of the lecture theatre can tell I have some sort of brows when I give my lectures. In a way, it’s kind of like stage makeup.

 
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The Relationship Between Lipstick and I

 

We're closer than you think.

We’re closer than you think.

 

If you’ve been following me, you might know how sensitive my lips are. They get all weirded out when I put on a lipstick, lip stain, lip gloss or even lip balm that they don’t like, and I’ll end up with lots of tiny bumps that start around the perimeter. That’s why when I find a brand of lip products that don’t cause me to break out and go all cray-cray, you can bet that I’m sticking with that brand for as long as forever.

 

Just over the past few days, I mentally went through my entire collection of lipsticks and realised to my utter dismay that I currently only wear about 10% of them. The other 90%? All test subjects, either given by companies for review purposes or bought with my own money on a whim. Oh, thank God for the really kind Tom Ford counter sales assistants who very nicely allowed me to give their lippies a go before I decided if I wanted to buy them.

 

{Disclaimer: Whether a lipstick worked on me or not isn’t revealed in my blog reviews, regardless of whether they are self-bought, because eczema is different for everybody and if it doesn’t work for me, it might still work on you. If it works for me, it might not for you. To each his own. All other aspects of the lip products, such as longevity and pigmentation, are as stated though.}

 

So, reflecting on my abysmal collection of lipsticks, I ended up buying a Sara Happ limited edition lip set, a Julie Hewett lipstick from the Noir Collection and a L’Oreal Pure Amaranthe lipstick. All within the span of less than 24 hours. Yep, that’s right. I’m so poor now.

 

I tweeted a couple of times how much I had to stop – and for now I have. But that got me thinking about why I even had the need to get those lippies (no, seriously, it was a need). And then I realised, that I just cannot live without them. And this is why.

 
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Feature: The New Times Bookstore at Waterway Point, Singapore

 

Times Waterway Point Singapore

 

With the rise of electronic books comes the inevitable demise of real, tangible books that allow you to feel the pages as you flip them over. If you’re a book lover like me, your heart must have been chipped away bit by bit with news of bookstores closing down and moving out in the past few years. Libraries are almost a salvation but nothing beats having a hard cover that you can truly call your own. That’s why when stores like Times expand and launch a new branch, it’s pretty much a celebration.

 

The new Times store is located at Waterway Point and although it’s quite far off for many people, at least those of you living there will have something to look forward to. Not only is this branch large and spacious, it also features exclusive children’s and lifestyle sections.

 

Kids will love the children’s section because where else will you be welcomed by a princess and a knight – in his shining armour, no less – and find soft, fluffy ladybirds to lean on while you explore the worlds of magic? Activity books and toys will serve not only to entertain the young, but also educate them in a fun way.

 

My favourite part of the store is the lifestyle section, where you’ll find things like Jamie Oliver’s kitchenware (oh, those gorgeous tins for storing garlic), aromatherapy tools and even cushions for your couch (I mean, with Netflix, it’s something you probably need). The space can also be converted to host workshops, such as cooking demonstrations and arts & craft sessions.

 

Times Waterway Point Singapore

A little something for your couch.

 
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