Trinz NessyChoice Falsies

Making a small note to Trinz’s NessyChoice, whose falsies I’ve come to love!

Made in Thailand, the brand manufactures super soft, high-quality eyelashes from real horsehair and mink. You know how some falsies have the tendency to irritate the hell out of you? Well, the texture of NessyChoice makes it lighter than most, hence the pliability, and reduced irritation to your eyelids. The lashes tend to conform to the shape of your eyes instead of forcing your eyes into an unnatural arc.

Now available at Zalora.sg.

Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean, TrinzNessyChoice lashes Singapore

Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean, Makeup Addict - Trinz Nessychoice and NYX

Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean nessy choice

Thank you Trinz for the set of 4 falsies from NessyChoice.

Also, never growing out of Siren from NYX’s Matte series. I have mad love for purple-toned lipstick.

Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean, dark lipstick NYX - siren

Till next time.

ZoukCoolTribe, Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean

It’s Friday!
Have a great weekend ahead everybody.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[MUA] Channeling Oriental Vibes 

Like many Asians, I used to hate my mono-lids. Except mine aren’t exactly mono per se – only tucked away under an inch of skin. My younger self was an avid fan of thick grunge-rock black eyeliner. And my mantra was that the thicker the eyeliner, the more ‘made-up’ and glam I looked. With my eyes closed, I literally had to colour my lids with 2cm of black ink before a significant line could be seen above my eyes upon opening them. And truth be told, I went through pots of black eyeliner faster than Taylor Swift changed her boyfriends.

Since then I’ve learnt to embrace my almond shaped, slitty Asian eyes, and to play with ’em God-given oriental features. My favourite Asian models – Liu Wen and Mingxi could always rock the runway despite the decidedly Western VS culture. Besides the fact that they have much bigger eyes (or perhaps proportionally smaller faces) than I do, monolids never stopped them from wearing bolder looks. Brown, taupe, peach and gold eyeshadow looks amazing on Asian skin, and so does bright red on the lips. In fact, reds in any shade (brights, dark) and texture (shimmer, gloss, matte) goes perfectly as lip accessories.

Liu Wen Red lips
Liu Wen looking amazing in smokey-blue.

I wasn’t exactly recreating her look, but merely matching my day-to-night makeup with an oriental floral dress. As the occasion beckons (a friend’s wedding),  I could really afford to glam it up.

One thing I’ve learnt from watching too-many makeup videos is that on Asian monolids the cat-eye always works.  Brows:
Banila Co. Brow Auto-Pencil in Red Brown
Banila Co. BrowCara in Deep Brown

Eyes:
Too Faced Cosmetics Return Of Sexy eye palette Neutrals
Makeup Forever Waterproof Cream Eyeshadow in Aqua Black

Cheeks/Shading:
Physician’s Formula Magic Mosaic in Warm Beige/Light Bronzer
Etude House Blusher in Berry Beam

Lips:
Chanel Rouge Allure in Red

Foundation: 
Clinique Superbalanced Makeup in Ivory
Clinique Loose Powder in N1


As I got older, pink stopped being a fail-safe lip colour – women in their mid-20s could risk looking juvenile with overly sweet pink. I find that reds, mauve or rose are the new safety nets. On days I feel more adventurous, I go for deep purples and plums, which are great for matching cool-toned outfits. Peach and coral lips are for those barely-there days.

With lips I’m clearly a bit of a fanatic. – this is only half of my gloss collection which started 3 years ago. My favourites are, hands-down, Maybelline (love their plum shades, and their gloss always smells delish!), MAC (stays on forever) and NYX (not in this shot – I have more than 10 of those because they come in sooooo many yummy colours I wanna bite my own lips sometimes). I could share more of them next time! Which brands are your faves?

If I could I would wear lipstick to bed 😉

#Justforlaughs #WeddingWoes
  

Hit me up if you’re on Snapchat! @silhouettekiss
Goodnight guys.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

An Uber Encounter, An Epiphany

The probability of ever getting a ride on the same cab with the same driver in Singapore, within a month, is approximately less than 5%, assuming 15 rides per month and official statistics as of August 2015: the current fleet of taxis in SG being 28,404, with 2 or 3 shift-based cabbies are tied to a vehicle (~70,000 drivers), and P(n,k)=1−(n!/n^k(nk)!).

Don’t quote me on that. Math was never my strong point. Plus the statistics of which is not important to the story I’m about to tell.

Couple of nights ago: 4:35am 

I start my workday at the wee hours of morning, at the end of a typical graveyard shift. As always, I book a cab from  Uber or GrabTaxi, with the former being my preferred app, right before stepping out from the door. The driver was already waiting for me  at the sheltered drop-off. When I get in, he says: “Hello. Remember me? I drove you. Last last week.”

He’s a bespectacled Malay man in his 50s. Although he does not smile or look me in the eye as he revs up the car, his verbal acknowledgement was already a nice gesture.

“Yea I remember!” But honestly I don’t.

“You know how I remember? I see same pickup address, you also going to Central, and I see your Dad – downstairs to see you off, just like last time. I think to myself – same one!”

I laugh. That’s right. Uber drivers between 2 – 5am in my residential area revolved around the same handful anyway. It’s no surprise he’s driven me twice.

“Why you go to work so early? F&B?”

And so goes the long explanation of why despite working in a corporate office, I’m part of a team of shift-work warriors.

The cabbie laughs at this point, says “You must be earning more than usual la. This kind of timing you work, so hard, how you sleep in the afternoon?”

And we go back and forth with ways we both try to stay awake. His shifts are from 4ish in the morning to 3pm. The conversation shifted to his daughter who works at the DNATA, Changi Airport, who’s shift only ends a little past midnight. By the time she reaches home, it’s usually 2am.

“You see, your father come downstairs send you to work. Very sweet of him. I also, want to send my daughter to work, but no chance la. We difference shift. Everyday only see her 1 or 2 hours, if I wake up early, otherwise, don’t even see her.”

“Do you send her home sometimes?”

“No la, airport provide transport. She la, follow my footsteps. I also work at airport DNATA for 20 over years before becoming a taxi driver. She always wanted to work at airport. Her choice la. Want to spend time with her, I wake up 3 hours earlier to eat with her. She supper I breakfast. Sometimes I wake up, she too tired, she just sleep. Cannot spend time together.”

And then it dawned on me: perhaps dad just wants to spend a little more time with me. When I was a stewardess and even now as an analyst working on shifts, Dad makes the effort to get out of bed at the most insane timings, whenever it’s dark and creepy outside, just so he could (a) help me with my hugeass luggage, (b) make sure I don’t get attacked by stray dogs in my hood, (c) prevent me getting kidnapped, even though I’m physically more able to drop-kick somebody in comparison to my Dad, and (d) take down the taxi car-plate, remember the taxi driver’s face and flash cabbies the ‘nobody-messes-with-my-daughter’ face, in case somehow I do end up missing. Perhaps it’s all of the above, and a very simple fact that he just wishes to spend a little time with me.

For 2 years, I was never chatty while waiting for my taxi. I was always anxious to report for flight. Usually I’d taken too long to pack/makeup/paint my nails/eat or just plain procrastinated till the last minute. Sometimes, being the headstrong independent person I tend to be, I got impatient and insisted on rolling the luggage by myself as I am very used to carrying my own luggage. But thinking back, there was never a time I was left alone to wait for taxis by my own, in the dead of the night. My almost 70-year-old Dad waits with me.

It’s crazy how lucky I am for this little sacrifices (of sleep and time) from my loved ones. I’d taken these acts for granted., thinking Dad would always be my ‘cab companion’, so instead of talking to him, I’m usually too tired and grouchy to speak, having been disrupted from a healthy night’s sleep. Maybe another time. Just like how the cabbie’s daughter falls asleep thinking that there’d always be another supper with her daddy, when her dad has already woken up prepared to spend time with her. But what I often forget, is that just like how the cabbie sacrifices his sleep to see his daughter, Dad wakes up in the middle of the night to see me off too.

Often we don’t get the luxury of the same chances, over and over again. And because I do, I’ve been really blessed.

Amazing how a simple chat with an Uber driver could bring such clarity.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

P.S. On a side note, I was in Bangkok for a short getaway last week, and instead of hailing cabs off the street, I used UberX for all of my solo transport needs. Guess what? Each trip (albeit only within central Bangkok) amounted to about 50-90THB, which was SGD$2 – 5. I literally grabbed UberXs every single time, even for short distances from Nana’s Place to Terminal 21, or even though I could have taken the metro. Spoilt for choice!

Music and Endless Wintering

“Music brings a warm glow to my vision, thawing mind and muscle from their endless wintering.”
― Haruki Murakami, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

 

Last night saw the revival of my 7-year-old iPod (above), opening an emotional floodgate of memories tagged to songs from another lifetime. Despite being in a badly scratched and battered state after years of abuse in the studio, it played just fine. I recall purchasing this as a fresh undergraduate who had just fallen so hard for dance and was ready to give up the world just so I could dance forever. On days when nothing else made sense but songs and movement, I was plugged into my iPod, lost in beats.

At 19, I was a dance instructor earning my keep. Pretty much everyone I knew joked that I was the part-time student and full-time dancer. I would skip classes for show rehearsals, then stay up all night after dance classes to do a half-assed job on assignments. I neglected a lot (of people and circumstances) just so I could dance. When I bothered to show up in lectures I was the hard-to-reach girl perpetually in baggy Tees and flashy dance shoes, who never stayed to chat with my Professors as I would be rushing off to dance. I’m blessed with parents who never questioned my passion even on days when I got home after rehearsals at 3am and had to be up for school in 5 hours.

Music was my high and music was my low. I danced hard out of passion. It was a vent for all my frustrations and a channel to my joys. In itself a process and not means to an end, I enjoyed dance rehearsals more than the actual showcase. I didn’t dance for fame – I was and am just as happy grooving in my own bedroom, eyes closed. More ways than one, dance is a bridge to emotional states I could never quite cross.

Eventually when I got my psychology degree, I knew my love affair with dance was to end. During my final semester reality struck hard – I was never meant to be a dancer. I was too ambitious and scared to be led by fluffy, unstable dreams. Much as I am passion-driven, I would first and foremost be a logical being with my emotions suppressed. A lot of decisions I now make are rooted in that part of me.

Last night, realization struck that I’m not the same person I was 7 years ago. Just as I often did I was in an open space, plugged into my old iPod, yet the familiar highs and sorrows evaded me while listening to songs I once loved. I used to be so harsh on myself – I would never allow myself to forget a step. Yet I don’t feel a sense of loss now at not remembering dance steps which once branded my muscles like a memory or a scar. Memories fade, as do priorities. Many things which once mattered so much to me, or even once meant the world to me, didn’t matter any more. I had playlists marked ‘To Learn’ or ‘Practice’ with music which were once looped over and over. Now they no longer made any sense. Other songs were sectioned into playlists by genre, mood and artistes, including a playlist just for ‘Recorded Lectures’ which I taped when my heart and soul wasn’t in the classroom with me  Even in an inconsequential iPod my life was logically compartmentalized.

Logic speaks for the mind. Even with evolving circumstances and passing time, I would always be reduced to a state of logical reasoning. Above all, my thoughts overcome my heart. At certain points in time we’re bound to feel lightning flashes of passion and heat – but could they endure the endless wintering of time? Or are they only good at offering escape and a state of trance.

Food for thought on this Sunday night.
I still miss.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[DIARY] WRITER’S BLOCK

Life caught me by the lapels and refused to let go. For a while now I’m almost afraid of looking at watches & clocks, seeing each day draw to an irrevocable close. 2015 is turning out very different from what I imagined, it’s little wonder that I’ve stopped churning out annual resolutions to ‘be better’, ‘work harder’, ‘stay humble’. Rat race is the word, conformity is the endgame, and fighting it is exhausting. But that doesn’t mean we should all be products of this Borsalino hat test – squeezed through a tube for quality checks just to be exactly what is ‘perfect’. I’ve been thinking of trying new things; I haven’t felt fully mentally stretched since cramming for statistics finals in university so perhaps it’s time to kill some brain cells in ways other than drinking. Even if sometimes hard wok goes down the drain and you’re forced to watch it go, learning is never a bad thing. Allow me a brief moment of pessimism but in the end, you’ve just gotta remember that some doors open and others will always remain shut.

In other news, writer’s block is scarily real! 5,000 words has never been so hard for me. Sneak peek of a one-liner in my Golden Point 2015 Submission, maybe.

“He makes no sudden movement, but a hand slips stealthily into his left breast pocket, feeling for the cool metal of his .38 Taurus Model 85. “

Did someone say murder mystery? Or raunchy erotica. Or both.

Also, has anyone found a cure for writer’s block?

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[MACAU] oo4. THE ISLAND IN 20 PICS

Let me take you on a tour of the nondescript: things you won’t see unless on foot, plowing through the city.

“It all takes time and lessons and places, but I’m learning to listen to my restless heart, telling me to “go, go, go!”
― Charlotte Eriksson, Another Vagabond Lost To Love: Berlin Stories

Macau directions
Quintessentially Macau signboards in green and yellow
macau sightseeing
Back alleys and winding roads. Grilled balconies.
Breathtaking views
Breathtaking views
macau wandering
Narrow meandering lanes
macau beauty
Faded walls
travelogue macau
More beautiful from behind bars
macau china
Schools, cathedrals
chinese macau
Lush green overhanging trees
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Underpopulated
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Kitty Kindergartens
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Pretty neighbourhoods
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Tinted with Baroque influences
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Tall street lamps
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Intimidating names
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Quaint white architecture
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Royal cathedrals
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As homely as it is holy
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Pops of orange
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Mad bloggers on the loose
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Road signs you don’t know how to react to

There you go friends, Macau for you

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[MACAU] oo2. RUINS OF ST. PAUL’S | MUSEUM OF MACAU

Jean Li (Singapore) - Viktoria Jean

Tourists are so darn easy to sniff out. If you’ve been to Macau, you’d know the Ruins of St Paul’s (大三巴牌坊) but a one-sided wall, completely demolished and naked in the back. So the first-timers (like us) would still clamour for pictures with the famed 16th-century complex, an official UNESCO World Heritage Site. 68 steps would lead you to the southern stone façade, behind which lies the remains of the original pillars and a shrine. A wee bit of secret: the locals would tell you it’s customary to throw coins into the top window of the ruins from the stairs, for good luck.

From here, you can spot the stone façade, far left. Pretty deconstructed huh?
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As we got closer, I realised it was just a one-dimensional wall. Didn’t stop me from my touristy shots!
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Way to the ‘top’ – 68 easy-peasy steps! And so crowded on a late February weekday, we had to jostle a few elbows outta our way. Since this wall’s one of ’em things you’ve got to check off your Macau Bucket-lists, we made it to the top and beyond. DSCN6352
Girl In Macau Travel Blog

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THE TOP

Girl In Macao Travel Blog
The best entitlement of a tourist is not being taken for a fool at stupid pictures. Here I am receiving a scroll from…some great Chinese scholar! (My bad, I can’t even remember names of half of my university Professors.)
Girl In Macao Travel BlogGirl In Macao Travel Blog Cannonball
I CAME IN LIKE A CAAAANON-BAAAALLL (way before wreckingball became a thing)

Girl In Macao Travel Blog 2

Next best tourist entitlement: you don’t get judged for meaningless hand gestures in awkward I-don’-know-what-to-do-with-my-hands shots.

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“Look, it’s a road, in Macau”

Signboards Macao St Pauls

Not far from the Ruins of St Paul’s is the Museum of Macau, filled with relics from the time Macau was part of Portuguese empire, and also most importantly these were sacred and holy relics of art. Read: Museu De Arte Sacra = Museum Of Sacred Art.

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The Museum of Macau is located in the famous Monte Fortress, in the heart of the city where the Portuguese first set foot. Being a fortress from where battles were fought and Macau defended, actual live cannons were left behind.

Macau Travel Blogger
My hands! were not awkward at all

Macao Travel Blog

I had a hard time saying goodbye to the cannon I grew so fond off. They made a good war relic, and a decent sunbed.
Herein lies the footpath from midlevel (outdoors) to the top of Museum of Macau. Great weather, amazing scenery and good company makes for a fantastic walk.plague museum de macau DSCN6397 Museum of Macau Winding steps Museum of Macau DSCN6400 DSCN6401 DSCN6402
Right at the top is where you see a grand entrance to the Museum. Conventionally, you’re meant to enter from the ground floor. The top floor consists of a garden, a small still fountain, and the fortress formation in which cannons are still located.DSCN6403 Lake Museum of Macau DSCN6406

So the view from the top stole my heart! I loooove the vantage point, though ought to have been scared shitless standing so close to the edge. All I really wanna do is get close to the heart of the city.

DSCN6408 Girl In Macau Macau Sunset Macau Peak DSCN6421 DSCN6423 DSCN6426 DSCN6427Further snapshots from within the Fortress walls. DSCN6430 DSCN6431 DSCN6432 DSCN6434 DSCN6435 DSCN6436 DSCN6437 DSCN6438 DSCN6439 DSCN6440 DSCN6442

Every city I go, I try to get the bird’s eye view. Much like the Eiffel of Paris or Burj Khalifa of Dubai. It pretty much lays the city out at your feet for a much clearer picture than any map will provide you.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

P.S Don’t miss [MACAU] OO1. OF EGGTARTS, GRAFFITI AND ALL THINGS YUMMY