You’ll always hate how your writing used to sound

I’m having a roaring good time cleaning out a writing folder filled with incomplete, half-assed fiction, themed articles on beauty, tech and health, as well as a bunch of incoherent poems, and God knows what else I might unearth. Painful as it is, the Recycle Bin is where they shall all go.

I thought I might have written some gems, but really, most pieces are utter crap. I hate how I sounded five years ago. It was then that I used to contribute very short articles to a now-defunct e-zine for silver-haired folks, as well as a Japanese health and beauty site that has unfortunately gone the way of the dodo. Writing came to me rather easily then – it kills me that I’ve developed a lethal overthinking habit, and I can’t seem to write as quickly and smoothly now. I’m hoping to regain some writing mojo.

To celebrate the purge of my writing folder, here’s a short one I wrote to supplement a campaign for healthier food choices for the older generation. Mind you this was five years ago.

Join me as I cringe and watch this burn.


A Bitter-Sweet Life

Most of us battle sugar-addiction on a daily basis. When feeling tired, stressed out or just plain hungry, we reach for sugar-laden quickies – chocolates, icecream or a doughnut with our coffee.

Bitter foods may not be appetising, but studies have shown that bitter foods stimulate our taste receptors on the tongue, increasing bile flow and nutrient absorption. Nutritionist dietitician Nicole Dube of Halifax, N.S. encourages consumption of bitter foods and herbs as “help to stimulate digestive juices and support food digestion.” Enhanced digestion of bitter vegetables leaves you feeling full and satisfied for much longer than that tempting bar of chocolates.

Hate bitter foods? Here are some bitters that make excellent addition to soups and salads, and when sprinkled over pastas and pizzas, or stuffed in a breakfast wrap.

KALE

(photo http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4408/Top-10-Health-Benefits-of-Eating-Kale.html)

With over 45 different flavonoids in kale being identified by researchers, its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties helps to relieve chronic inflammation and supports our body’s detoxification system.

ENDIVE

(photo http://www.renaissanceherbs.com.au/herbs-a-z/endive)

Chocked full of phytonutrients, endives support the liver by reducing cholesterol, and balancing our hormones.

PUNTARELLE

(photo http://www.123rf.com/photo_12793588_fresh-puntarelle-vegetable-on-white-background.html)

A member of the chicory family, sometimes known as asparagus chicory, the puntarelle is an Italian favorite that is low in calories and extremely high in vitamin C and B9 density.

RADICCHIO

(photo http://www.iknowvegetables.com/radicchio.html)

Fresh radicchio is one of the excellent sources of vitamin K. Increasing intake of vitamin K has an established role in treatment of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, as it limit neurona damage in the brain.
SPINACH

(photo http://food.sulekha.com/dishimages/24940.jpg)

Lutein, the carotenoid found in spinach, prevents eye diseases such as age-related cataracts and macular degeneration.

The next time you’re craving a sugary boost, think of the healthier bitter alternatives that are in fact, sweeter in the long run.

Need further convincing to eat your bitters? Bitter greens like radicchio, endive, and kale contains phytonutrients that support the liver – the vital organ that stabilizes our hormones, purifies the blood and metabolizes fats.


I cringed, so hard.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Bed-time musings

“Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think,
I’m not going to make it
,
but you laugh inside — remembering all the times you’ve felt that way.”
― Charles Bukowski

cat in bed

Over drinks on a Friday, I realised being single must be a blessing, because really,

bedd

I mean, if some lady got to marry the Eiffel Tower, I can be legally tied to my bed so that it’s absolute cruelty to force us apart. It took weeks of sleep deprivation, and then a good sleep-in Saturday, for me to realise my greatest love is my own bed.

And if my bed were all these kinds of pretty…I’ll never ever leave it for anything or anyone.

bed22

bed33

queenred
Red Room. Hurhurhur…who else gets the reference?

treebed

forestbed

#randommusings on a Saturday night, before I return to worshipping my other half.

Tata.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

SSENZE – Kpop World Festival 2017 – SG Finals

SSENZE is happy to be finalists of the Singapore round of Kpop World Festival!

Our finals will be held this Saturday, 5 Aug, 5pm @ Tampines Hub, Singapore. PM me for further details!

The audition clips of all finalists were recently released, and this is ours. Gotta admit that this was in no way perfect, but we did our best to add our own feminine touch to VIXX’s masculine song.

It’s been quite a journey putting together our auditions and finals piece, and I’m super fortunate to have these crazy girls doing this together as a team.

For our finals, we’re gunning for a whole different look and concept, and are training hard to give a good show. Do give us, as well as all other finalists, your support!

For enquiries on my dance crew, SSENZE, please email theofficialssenze@gmail.com

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2F1700820416879560%2Fvideos%2F1733553856939549%2F&show_text=1&width=560

Yes No Maybe

Yes, no….. maybe?

In any case, we loved both Mina Myoung’s choreography and Suzy’s stage choreography so we mashed them up a little.

Back with another one, and hope you guys like it ❤

Dancers:
Kris (@mrsxxmicky)
Youwen (@youwenny)
Peiwen (@wynne.wen)
Xiaoman (@celesteyiap)
Yuzhen (@silhouettekiss)
Xavier (xvrlum)

Psst…follow us on Instagram for more!

Yes No Maybe

받지마 알잖아
목소릴 들으면
분명히 내 맘이
또 다시 흔들려
잠깐만 얘기만
나누려 했지만 했지만

Yes no maybe
도대체 내 맘이 뭔지
다신 너를 안 보려 해도
또 너에게 가고 있어
이젠 no more baby
이러는 나를 난 hate me
너를 안 볼 수가 없어
그런데 볼 수도 없어

Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes

가지마 돌아가 만나면
알잖아 또 빠져들어가

Yes no maybe
도대체 내 맘이 뭔지
다신 너를 안 보려 해도
또 너에게 가고 있어
이젠 no more baby
이러는 나를 난 hate me
너를 안 볼 수가 없어
그런데 볼 수도 없어

언제까지 이럴 순 없잖아
끝이 뻔한 길을
계속 걸어갈 수는 없잖아
가면 안 되는 길을
되풀이 하는 내 모습을 봐
이런 내가 이해가 안가

Yes no maybe
도대체 내 맘이 뭔지
다신 너를 안 보려 해도
또 너에게 가고 있어
이젠 no more baby
이러는 나를 난 hate me
너를 안 볼 수가 없어
그런데 볼 수도 없어

Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes
Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes

하지마
마지막이라고 하면서도
또 다시

 

Translation

Don’t pick up
I know when
I hear your voice
My heart will shake again
Though I tried to
Just talk to you

Yes no maybe
I don’t know my heart
I try to not see you ever again
But I’m going to you again
Now no more baby
I hate myself for doing this, hate me
I can’t not see you
But I can’t see you either

Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes

Don’t go, if you go
You know you’ll fall for him again

Yes no maybe
I don’t know my heart
I try to not see you ever again
But I’m going to you again
Now no more baby
I hate myself for doing this, hate me
I can’t not see you
But I can’t see you either

I can’t keep doing this
The end is so obvious
I can’t keep walking on this path
This path I shouldn’t be on
I see myself going back on it
I don’t understand myself

Yes no maybe
I don’t know my heart
I try to not see you ever again
But I’m going to you again
Now no more baby
I hate myself for doing this, hate me
I can’t not see you
But I can’t see you either

Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes
Yes no no yes no
No yes yes no yes

Don’t do this
I tell myself this is the last time
But yet again

 

This song was originally sang by Suzy.
All rights belong to the respective owners. No copyright infringement intended.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

This is a short post about Christmas

‘Tis the season to be reminded that quality time with your loved ones are the best gifts you can afford, which no amount of money can ever replace.

Cheers to all the old souls who will never be too old for log cakes, stories by the fireplace, midnight cookies and milk, and all of Christmas’ novelties.

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE ❤

Dedicating this little one-take dance piece by SSENZE (filmed with the help of Marvin PD-nim!) to everyone out there who’s never stopped believing in the magic of Christmas.

Enjoy.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

BlackBox SG – INNI Skincare

My ultimate skincare remedy for the festive season has arrived! Look no further if you too are worried about ruining your skin with anticipated late nights, booze and Christmas goodies. INNI by La Source Spa is a premium range created by beauty professionals from the popular beauty sanctuary, to give you results that parallel stepping into a spa.

I’m featuring 2 exclusive product sets from BlackBox SG – the INNI by La Source, and INNI Solutions by La Source. Both beautifully packaged, these will make great Christmas gifts for family and friends. Products are 100% botanical and source-traceable – its ingredient lists feature easily identifiable plant and nature-sources. To put our minds at ease, all products are also free of parabens, mineral oils, additives and preservatives as well as colouring or artificial fragrances.

You can purchase these exclusive sets straight from BlackBox SG, plus don’t forget to claim a further 10% discount by using the promo code <<BBXJEAN10>> upon checkout!

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

 

Exclusive Box – INNI Solutions by La Source

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

These products are a sneakpeek into INNI’s extensive solutions range, which target age-defense, advance whitening serum, pigment corrective and AHA renewal, amongst many other skincare troubles. All products in this set have a really clean  scent – no acidic / alcoholic smells which irritates the hell out of me. I’m big on the scents, and INNI has passed the test. Here we go:

1. Hyaluronic B5 Gel | 30ml
Provides intensive hydration by binding moisture to skin tissue. Restores and hydrates all skin types without clogging pores.
Suitability: For all skin type includes acne prone skin, male and female
Retail size and price: 30ml @$104.86
Verdict: With an au-naturale ensemble, this product is super hydrating. Gel-based, it glides on smoothly and is absorbed so quickly, it is as if my skin is quenching its thirst. Leaves no residue so feel free to layer with the rest of your routine. My favourite product from this set!

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

 

2. Youthful Glow Enzyme Peel | 15ml
A nutrient-rich exfoliant that combines the enzymatic properties of papaya and pineapple with the nourishing advantages of wholesome pumpkin. Leaves skin with a soft, refined glow.
Suitability: For all skin type, male and female
Retail size and price: 15ml @$17.66 | 80ml @$94.15
Verdict: Only tried this once – the exfoliant is powerful, and the results are as though I’ve just done a peel at a facial. Slightly drying after the exfoliation. Moisturizing products used after this peel got absorbed really efficiently.

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

 

3. Skin Rescue Serum | 15ml
An instant fix for tired and fatigued skin, this Vitamin C-based serum hydrates and rejuvenates, promoting overall skin balance.
Suitability: For all skin type, male and female
Retail size and price: 15ml @$57.78 | 30ml @$115.56
Verdict: This worked wonders for my tired and fatigued skin. I’ve been having some late nights, and my complexion is taking the brunt of hits. Besides needing hydration, a shot of Vitamin C helps lighten up any pigmentation from skin fatigue, and also boosts skin elasticity. Great especially if layering on right before bedtime.

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

 

Exclusive Box – INNI by La Source

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

This set includes item overlaps from the previous set –  Youthful Glow Enzyme Peel and the Skin Rescue Serum. I’m really in love with the white mini satchel and pretty orange ribbons! Everything about this packaging feels like I’m stepping into a spa room.

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

1. Illuminating Whitening Mask | 15ml
This unique brightening mask contains sea kelp, enzymes and minerals which work together to tone and brighten dull and tired looking skin.
Suitability: For all skin types, male and female
Retail Size and Price: 15ml @$15.65 | 80ml @$83.46
Verdict: I have fair skin in general and whitening masks never managed to achieve immediately visible effects. Or this could be because I was using this after a particularly late night. This revived my late-night, sleep-deprived zombie complexion, which instead of looking lifelessly gray, has taken on a slightly brighter tone. Will definitely try this again for more visible results.

2. Youthful Glow Enzyme Peel | 15ml

3. Skin Rescue Serum | 15ml

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

INNI by La Source - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Have never been to the La Source Spa, but from what INNI can do, the spa is definitely worth a visit somehow. Get these exclusive INNI skincare sets if you’re looking for some home-based pampering!

Named INNI – short for Infinity – the brand is founded on love for purity and wellness. All products are 100 per cent natural and made without parabens, mineral oils, artificial colorants, perfumes and fillers. Harnessing the power of the range’s signature ingredients – Australian heilmoor clay, a peat which has purifying, anti-ageing and rejuvenating properties.”

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

BlackBox SG – Winter Organics

What’s new in my beauty stash?  A box of cool face and body products from Winter Organics that I’ve been psyched to try out!

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

What are they:

Calendula Shower Gel 
Retail Size and Price:
 200ml, $19.90
Lather and cleanse in a field of budding marigolds, refreshing your mind as well as your skin. The organic flower extract calms skin irritation and replenishes dry skin with lashing moisture. pH5 formulation, certified organic and suitable for all skin types including sensitive/eczema skin.

Key Ingredients:
1. Calendula Extract: Gentle on the skin with moisturising properties. Beneficial for allergy prone and sensitive skin.
2. Rooibos Extract: High level of anti-oxidants to counteract the effects of premature aging. It’s anti-viral, anti-fungal, and antibacterial properties makes it perfect for acne, eczema, psoriasis, and other skin conditions.
3. Vetiver: Anti-septic and moisturising properties to protect skin.

Verdict: Gentle flowery scent of the soothing kind. You know how flowery fragrances can get really sweet and annoying, but this one grows on you. I can foresee my family and I using this again.

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Macadamia Hand & Body Lotion 
Retail Size and Price:
 100ml, $18.90
Safe for all skin types including sensitive skin, the Macadamia Hand and Body lotion uses the healing power of macadamia nut oil/milk and Tocopherol. Rich in Vitamin E and antioxidants, it keeps skin moisturised, improve the appearance of scars, helps with sunburn and other skin irritation. pH5 formulation, certified organic and suitable for all skin types including sensitive/eczema skin.

Key Ingredients:
1. Macadamia Nut Milk/ Oil: Rich in Vitamin E. Improves the appearance of scars, helps with sunburn and other skin irritation. Promotes skin elasticity, youthful appearance and restore skin’s barrier function.
2. Tocopherol: Natural antioxidant which is rich in Vitamin E that promotes cell renewal, skin elasticity and help prevent the signs of ageing.
3. Chamomile Flower Extract: Anti-inflammatory and soothing, beneficial for allergy prone and sensitive skin.

Verdict: Handy bottle to carry around in your purse or handbag. The texture can get a little thick and takes some time to absorb into your skin, but when it finally does, leaves a pleasant lingering scent. My skin was left moisturised for a very long time.

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Cacao Facial Scrub 
Retail Size and Price: 100ml, $26.90
Cacao is a natural beauty superfood. With high level of antioxidants, Vitamin C, E, magnesium antioxidants, it enhances cellular regeneration to develop a healthy glow and clear skin. Triple natural gentle exfoliants of bamboo powder, argan shell powder and olive seed powder gently polishes and exfoliates. pH5 formulation certified organic and suitable for all skin types including sensitive/eczema skin.

Key Ingredients:
Triple Natural Gentle Exfoliants – Bamboo powder, Argan shell powder and Olive seed powder
1. Cacao: a natural beauty superfood. With high levels of antioxidants, Vitamin C, E, magnesium and antioxidants, it enhances cellular regeneration to develop a healthy glow and clear skin.
2. Olive Squalane: Derived from olives, it is similar to our skin own molecular structure. It’s biocompatibility allows it to penetrate all layers of skin for hydration, rejuvenation and nourishment of our skin.
3. Papaya Extract Enzymes have exfoliating properties to remove dead and damaged skin. Improves tone and texture of skin.

Verdict: Indeed a natural beauty superfood! This is my favourite Winter Organics product from this set because it smells good, and does wonders to my skin. After one scrub, I swear my skin glowed a little, even after an entire day in a dry air-conditioned environment. Unlike many scrubs out there, it didn’t feel rough. But don’t take this for granted, when using a scrub, always only use your third and fourth fingers so you don’t harm the top layers of your skin.

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Chamomile Facial Cleanser 
Retail Size and Price: 100ml, $25.90
Refresh your skin with Chamomile Facial Cleanser pH5 for use day and night. Release the relaxing, soothing scent of a natural flower blend as you massage the cleanser into your moist skin. Soft chamomile, soothing aloe vera, sweet calendula, exotic ylang ylang, warm rosemary, and citrusy orange ingredients blend together for a luxurious natural fragrance. Our formulation of pH5 is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin and speed up acne healing time with anti-inflammatory properties.

Key Ingredients:
1. Aloe barbadensis Leaf Juice: Anti-inflammatory, soothing, hydrating and toning
2. Seabuckthorn: High level of anti-oxidants, vitamins A,C,E & K and fatty omega to counteract the effects of premature aging.
3. Chamomile Flower Extract: Anti-inflammatory and soothing, beneficial for allergy prone and sensitive skin

Verdict: Chamomile always has that calming effect. When I use this to wash my face before bed, the au-naturale floral scent soothes my skin and relaxes my mind. I found the product slightly drying because after one wash, my skin felt a little tight. Then again this could be because I have been staying in air-conditioned areas for too long periods of time.  Overall I would still use this product again! Plus it’s handy enough to carry around for my showers at the gym.

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Winter Organics - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Winter Organics formulations are all natural, gentle on the skin, environmentally friendly and cruelty free. Natural and organic compounds are not only biodegradable and sustainable, they also do a better job than harsh chemicals which is a cheaper alternative for skincare. Certified organic ingredients must pass more rigorous standards of purity.

You heard it here first: Winter Organics Exclusive Box is available exclusively at S$61.60/box at BlackBox SG. (Usual Price: $88). Promotional price of S$49.90 is applicable to the first 30 sets only, after which this set will be sold at $61.90.

Don’t forget! Quote <<BBXJEAN10>> to enjoy an additional 10% off this or ANY exclusive sets at BlackBox SG 🙂

Direct shop link- http://blackbox.sg/luxury/detail/everything/Winter_Organics

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

The Face Inc – Revolutionary Primer Mist

Bustling with excitement as I’m writing this – The Face Inc has just, on 1 Nov, launched its Primer Mist and I’m honoured to be able to review this!

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Back in April, I had the pleasure of reviewing The Face Inc’s cleansing gel and active toner. I loved their lightweight texture and clear composition. And especially because it doesn’t create a layer of grease on my skin. The Primer Mist has not fallen short of expectations. It is indeed, as described on their website, a “lightweight hydration face mist that works instantly to hydrate, smooth and tighten skin in 15 seconds“. As The Face Inc suggests, the product is ideally for use before make up as a skin refresher and primer, to allow makeup to stay fresh for longer periods of time, but I spritz mine on before and after to lock in my makeup.

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean SingaporeThe Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean SingaporeRetailing at SGD68, the primer mist comes with a travel-sized spritz bottle and 2 refills (3x15ml). Shaped like a lipstick, the bottle is slim and small enough to slip into the pocket of my jeans, and even the smallest of purses, for all-day hydration on-the-go. Perhaps I’ve just found the perfect alternative to Vichy’s Eau Thermale, which I used to never leave home without.

To open, the blue top cap is easily slipped off, and a nozzle is revealed by twisting the bottom half of the spritz.

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Directions for use: Hold bottle 8 to 10 inches away from desired area and spray gently. Wait a few seconds before dabbing dry, and proceed with regular make-ip application. Can be used any time of day!

I tested this out first by first spritzing onto my hand – the liquid is clear,  but not completely watery (see first picture below). After spreading out the product evenly, absorbance rate was pretty fast. Within 15 – 30 seconds it was completely absorbed into my skin (see second picture below).The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

After application, a cool sensation persists. Zero grease/residue was left behind so it looks as though I didn’t apply any product at all and that I feel was the best quality of this primer mist. Fragrance-wise there were no distinctive smells at all, so it doesn’t irritate at all when you spritz close to your eyes or nose.

I brought this out to the gym this morning. Post-shower, this doubled really effectively as both toner and moisturizer, and even as a makeup setting spritz! Seriously given this super convenient design, even without learning about the product, I’m already sold. Just take my money already. Loving this sleek blue hydrating primer mist so much, that I’m just so glad it comes with refills.

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Please refer to this snapshot for complete detailed directions for use!

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

The Face Inc Primer Mist - Viktoria Jean Singapore

Thank you, The Face Inc.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[ASUS] Z3NVOLUTION – Launch of the Zen 3 Series in Singapore

ASUS has unveiled the long-awaited Zen 3 series in Singapore at the “Zenvolution” launch on Thursday, 13 October. The series consist of the ZenFone 3, ZenBook 3, ZenWatch 3 and Transformer 3, to be made available at their respective official launch dates in the weeks to come.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

I was delighted to be able to tinkle with these new products, and honoured to learn from the informative, introductory talks by the ASUS product professionals.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

ASUS ZenBook 3 - ASUS Zenvolution Launch in Singapore

ASUS ZenBook 3 – ASUS Zenvolution Launch in Singapore

The rose-gold ASUS ZenBook 3, a 12.5-inch ultralight-weight beauty with a 1920×1080 FHD display, caught my eye and possibly my heart. Packed with the latest 7th generation Intel Core i7-7500U processor (2.7GHz, 4MB cache), up to 16GB of 2,133MHz RAM, and up to a 1TB PCIe SSD, the ZenBook 3 will also be available in two other colours – quartz grey and royal blue (also a sleek-looking beast).

I must admit that the ZenBook 3 looks interestingly similar to MacBook Air (especially in rose-gold!), although the former, weighing only 2lbs, will possibly appeal to the ladies whose desire for ever lighter laptops will never be satisfied. I’ve lived with the mobility-hindering weight of the MacBook pro for the past 4, coming to 5 years. When I’m ready to send my Mac to the graveyard, I guess I’ll be torn between the MacBook Air and the line-up of lightweights available and/or set to launch in 2017.

The ASUS Transformer 3 Pro (on the right in the picture above), is a gorgeously sleek two-in-one tablet that conveniently transforms into a laptop. Weighing just under 800g, and just 8.35mm thin, it is made with an incredibly tough material, adorned with fine diamond-cut highlighting on the lid. The exterior is effectively protected from everyday scuffs and scratches.

What’s even better, the gadget is available in Icicle Gold and Titanium Gray – on top of which you get the option of four trendy colors for the ASUS Transformer Cover Keyboard to mix and match so you’ll never get bored.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore - ZENPAD PRO 3 8.0

This you can take everywhere: the Transformer 3 Pro – laid out in its tablet form. Several exclusive ASUS technologies, designed to enhance your viewing experience, are packed into this powerhouse: the Eye-Care mode reduces the amount of harmful blue light emitted from the screen by up to 30%; the ASUS Tru2Life Video uses intelligent software algorithms to optimize the sharpness and contrast of every pixel in every video frame so that videos look clearer, more detailed and more realistic; and the ASUS TruVivid does away with some light-sapping glass layers to improve clarity and reduce reflections by up to 67%.

Not to be outdone by the ZenBook 3, the Transformer 3 Pro is equipped with the 6th-generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor, 16GB of fast LPDDR3 RAM and up to 1TB PCIe®x4 SSD. Its Thunderbolt™ 3 interface offers unbelievably fast 40Gbps data transfers via the USB-C port – the any-way-up USB-C connector also supports USB 3.1 Gen 2 devices at speeds up to 10Gbps, 20 times faster than USB 2.0.

All of these I managed to get some first-hand experience of!

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

Of course, there’s also the ZenWatch, Zenfone 3 and ZenPad 3 – details of which can be found at ASUS SG’s main site.

One of the highlights at the ASUS launch exhibition was thewalk-in life-sized prism, representative of the dual-prism periscope arrangement in the ZenFone Zoom, the world’s thinnest optical-zoom smartphone. ZenFone Zoom is built with meticulously configured glass, synthetic and prismatic lenses to maximize incoming light and capture the best possible photo quality.

Zenvolution Prism - ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

While the ASUS representatives introduced the various products, I couldn’t help noticing that the screen was specially manufactured by and labelled “ASUS”.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

Presenting the latest ASUS products.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore

Overall, I had an eye-opening, hands-on session, and got to witness some of the newest power ASUS technologies before they’re available in Singapore. Thank you ASUS SG for the invite, and the sleek ASUS media kit for keeps.

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore - Media Kit

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore -- Media Kit

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore - Media Kit

ASUS Zenvolution Zen 3 Singapore - Media Kit

Zenvolution has begun.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

BlackBox SG – Dr Young Skincare

Hello! Haven’t updated in a long while, but I’m still alive!

Got my hands on a bunch of skincare products from Dr Young Skincare, and had the luxury of pampering my skin with goods from their latest launch. They deserve a good long review. Thank you BlackBox SG!

More exclusive Dr Young skincare sets are available at BlackBox SG. Psst… don’t forget to apply my code ‘BBXJEAN10‘ for further 10% discount off your entire purchase! ♥

Exclusive Box 1 – Dr. Young Acne-Prone & Oily Skin (Dark Skin Base)

Targeted at troubled skin, these products focus on soothing inflamed skin, and covering up your flaws. Though generally I don’t have acne problems, I have worked these wonders into my skincare regime to soothe the occasional breakout. Limited sets are now available at $32.90/box (U.P $76.60)! Link to purchase: at BlackBox SG

Dr Young Skincare BlackBox SG 2

What’s in it:

1. AC Out Spot Toner With Herb Complex | 120ml
Contains green and white tea that protect skin, with additional 5 herbs that prevent spread of irritated spots and control sebum excretion.  Green Tea & White Tea prevents skin damage while Tea Tree Oil, Salicylic Acid and Triclosn soothe irritated areas.
Retail Price: 120ml, $36.90

Verdict: Slightly watery, with zero alcoholic scent. Faint scent of tea tree oil in the liquid, which I loooove. Used this on my seasonal, hormonal breakouts (ladies, y’all know what I mean) and the toner soothed my angry red spots – making them calm down and fade away way faster than they usually do. Advise not to skip the cotton pad during application due to extremely runny liquid. (Then again, I hate viscous toners.)

Dr Young Toner AC Spot Out

2. 2P Pearl Brightening Balm SPF35 PA++ | 30ml
Hydrating soothing B.B. cream without stickiness but light adhesiveness that makes dark/tanned skin much brighter, healthier. Provides fresh feeling on your skin all day long.
Shade:  dark skin color base
Retail Price: 30ml, $27.90

Verdict: Unfortunately the BB Cream was of a darker tone and didn’t suit mine. Will be giving this away to a tanner friend. Any takers?

Dr Young BB Cream Skincare BlackBox SG

3. Refreshing Spring Showers Mask (Damyang Bamboo) | 2pcs
Contains refreshing bamboo extracts from Damyang, which are rich in mineral and Portulaca Oleracea Extract. Also contains Flavonoid from Adansonia Digitata Leaf Extract, and Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract which soothes sensitive skin.
Retail Price: Per sheet (20ml), $5.90

Verdict: Left mine in the fridge before application so as to ‘ice’ my pores – the cooling effect doubled the shiokness of this mask. Bamboo extracts in any facial product almost never go wrong. The cooling and soothing effects were good – although I was left with a slightly heavy residual essence on my skin. I actually do prefer some other varieties in another Dr Young face masks set (below).

Do make sure that the BB Cream suits your skin tone! There are two available in the selection. All in all, a very good selection of products for a targeted purpose.

Exclusive Box 2 – Dr. Young Face Mask Set (Citrus, Bamboo, Ginseng)

You know how some facemasks can never adhere comfortably to your face, or annoyingly leave a thick sheen of grease after? In my opinion a good facemask should fit ‘like a glove’, with minimal slipping, and leave little to no residue.

Dr Young’s exclusive sheet masks set comes with 5x citrus, bamboo and ginseng-enhanced face masks, which in my opinion ranks above the usual drugstore variety. The texture of its sheets are even finer than some of my favourite Taiwanese brands (My Beauty Diary included), though not as soft or pliable. At $22.90/pack (U.P $54) for 15 sheets, this set is practically a steal. Link to purchase this set: at BlackBox SG

Dr Young Skincare - Blackbox SG

Dr Young Masks Korea

What’s in it:

1. Clear & Glowing Sky Mask (Jeju Citrus) 
Boasts the brightening effect of tangerine from Jeju Island, a UNESCO Natural World Heritage site, and White Flower Complex (Jasmine, Rose, Lilium candidum, Freesia Refracta, Leontopodium alpinum, Iris Versicolor Extract) to improve your skin tone and complexion. Nelumbo Nucifera Flower Extract and hyaluronic acid provides deep moisture to skin.
Retail Price: Per sheet (20ml) @$5.90, 5pcs/set @$18

Verdict: I’m biased towards product with tangy, citrusy scents, as it enhances the clean, refreshing effect. After a couple of use, skin seems lighter and brighter from within. Great as a boost to the pre-bed ritual.


2. Refreshing Spring Showers Mask (Damyang Bamboo) Contains refreshing bamboo extracts from Damyang, which are rich in mineral and Portulaca Oleracea Extract. Also contains Flavonoid from Adansonia Digitata Leaf Extract, and Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract which soothes sensitive skin.
Retail Price: Per sheet (20ml) @$5.90, 5pcs/set @$18

Verdict: As mentioned, the slightly heavy residue could be better. I’ve tested some lighter bamboo facemasks.

Dr Young Skincare set Blackbox SG masks

3. Nourishing Rain on Dry Skin Mask (Geumsan Ginseng) 

Saponin, which is the main ingredient of ginseng from Geumsan, ChungCheongnam-do, provides elasticity and nutrition to skin. Additionally, Medicinal Herb Complex (Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Sophora Angustifolia Root Extract, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Paeonia Albiflora Root Extract, Prunus Persica (Peach) Leaf Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract) and Shea Butter extracts fill up skin with deep moisture and nutrition and wrap it up, which leads to healthy and glorious skin.
Retail Price: Per sheet (20ml) @$5.90, 5pcs/set @$18

Verdict: The ginseng mask is by far my favourite – after 20 minutes my face feels truly ‘prepped’ for other products in my routine. This was lighter than most ginseng masks (or masks claiming to boast the skin-loving properties of ginseng), and the aftereffect was less oily than most. The moisturized feeling lasted for about 4 hours before my face started greasing up. And that was good enough for me. Was able to layer on some sunblock after using this, and not feel that there was too much on my face.

Ginseng face masks dr young

Feel free to develop your own verdicts. With the haze returning, it’s even more crucial to give your skin some lovin’. On most days, I begin my evening skincare regime with facemasking – this step in the ritual is just really important to me, and increasingly so with bad air conditions.

Grab your Dr Young skincare sets from BlackBox SG today! What’s even better, you can quote <<BBXJEAN10>> to enjoy an additional 10% off this or ANY exclusive sets at BlackBox 🙂

P.S. I’ve missed writing here! ❤

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Envy Haircare (UK) Review

Envy Pro has been touted “a work of genius” for its specially formulated, revolutionary 10 minute prewash Dual Fix system, which repairs, strengthens and adds gloss to all hair types, whilst helping to dramatically reduce fizz in damp and humid climates.

The brand has made multiple appearances on beauty publications in the UK. I’m honoured to be given an opportunity to test out the Envy Professional Blowdry haircare set. After using this for 3 weeks, the easy three-step routine has boosted shine, reduced frizz, and produced results that lasts!

Envy Haircare UK

Envy haircare Britain

I followed this easy three-step routine to healthier, glossier hair.

Viktoria Jean Envy Haircare

Step 1:
Intensive use – Apply DUAL FIX 12 generously and evenly from roots to ends onto dry unwashed hair. Rough dry with hairdryer until completely dry. Rinse thoroughly, shampoo twice and condition as normal.
Regular use – Shampoo hair, rinse, apply generously to wet hair, leave for 1 minute, rinse and condition as normal.

This product contains a perfect balance of silk proteins and keratin amino acids to target damaged areas and attract moisture to give long lasting results.

Envy Dual Fix 12 Haircare

Step 2: 
Shampoo twice as normal using the Envy GENTLE CLEANSING SHAMPOO

This paraben-free shampoo gently removes impurities leaving hair feeling fresh and build up free. Infused with a unique blend of keratin and silk proteins for strength, it leaves a clean lightweight base helping to improve performance of conditioners, treatments and styling products.

Envy Gentle Cleansing Shampoo is suitable for ALL types of hair, including fine, thin, thick, straight, and curly hair.

Envy Gentle Cleansing Shampoo

Envy Haircare Green Series

Step 3:
Condition as desired with the GENTLE DETANGLING CONDITIONER

The conditioner is infused with a unique blend of keratin and silk proteins to help protect and repair all hair types. Blending lightweight conditioning with superior detangling leaves your hair soft, shiny and manageable reducing frizz in the process.

Envy Gentle Cleansing Conditioner

My waist length hair tends to get frizzy, dry and tangled up, so the job of maintaining its glossiness and health have been entrusted to Envy Pro. Loving its clean scent and smoothing effects.

Outside of UK, the product is currently only available for purchase online, and comes with shipping fees. Definitely worth giving this a shot.

Envy Britain Haircare

The Envy Blowdry Haircare series

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

A Better Florist

Only the freshest flowers for my dear mother on Mothers’ Day, and where better to get fresh floral cuts than A Better Florist? Specially curated, hand-made arrangements can be whisked to your doorstep with a few simple clicks.
A Beter Florist, Singapore, Viktoria Jean
A Better Florist, Singapore, Viktoria Jean
Blue Roses to fend off those weekday blues:
Blue Roses, A Better Florist, Singapore, Viktoria Jean
Blue Roses, A better florist, Singapore, Viktoria Jean
A Better Florist, Singapore, Viktoria Jean
Don’t wait to show your mom and others around you some love! Use promo code “viktoriamum” to get $10 off your purchases.
xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Living The Vida Glow-ca

Does ingestible collagen really work? My quick answer is yes, if you understand the distinction of hydrolyzed collagen – also known as collagen hydrolysate, collagen peptide, gelatine, gelatine hydrolysate or hydrolyzed gelatine – in which individual collagen strands have been hydrolyzed using heat and either acid or alkali solutions.
Hydrolyzed collagen is produced from collagen found in the bones, skin, and connective tissue of animals such as cattle, fish, horses, pigs, and rabbits.  on the ingestible collagen bandwagon. In Japan and Taiwan, collagen is often added to noodles, soups, fondue pots and even marshmallows.

Collagen, the second most abundant substance in our body, is the protein glue that holds our bodies together,  as well as the building block of our tissues. As much as 75% of our skin, over 90% of our ligaments and tendons, 35% of our bones are made of collagen. We drink water as it is a huge part of our body composition, and in the same vein, collagen ingestion may help the body’s collagen formation as a whole.

Here’s a scary thought: in our mid-twenties our collagen production will begin to decrease at a rate of 2% a year, and we would have lost over half the amount of collagen in our bodies by our 50s when the natural collagen production ceases altogether. The clearest signs of this cessation include wrinkles, sagging skin, finer hair, joint pain or joint degeneration.

Pep talk aside, I’ve personally tried many brands and types of collagen products. The main concern of youths, or anyone in their 20s and 30s, is not the need for intake per se, but rather where and how to purchase collagen from a trustworthy source.

Well, one particular brand caught my eye of late, and that is Vida Glow.

Vida Glow Collagen Beauty Review

I’ve been trying out 2 of its sassy flavours for a week now: the natural marine collagen (left, in turquoise), and the peach-flavoured collagen (right, in pink), and though there aren’t any “omg she’s glowing!” and other immediately obvious effects, my face probably doesn’t get as dry and crack-ly under prolonged exposure to air-conditioning. Plus the additional collagen intake gives me a peace of mind.

Vida essentially means life and with every serving the brand aims to give consumers a little extra “life glow”. While based in Australia, all of Vida Glow’s collagen products are “Made in Japan”, and are marked with the highest grading form of pure marine collagen available. For assurance, Vida Glow ensures that every product batch is tested by an independent NATA accredited laboratory in Sydney, Australia, for quality and safety.

Vida Glow Collagen Review

Why I choose Vida Glow:

  • Aesthetics:
    Vida Glow has done right in the aesthetics department. Its bold, clean packaging and cotton candy colours projects a youthful, trendy image which I love. Helps a lot that the pop-coloured sachets make me happy as I’m stirring its contents into my coffee.
  • Convenience:
    – Being individually packed, it is incredibly convenient to pop a sachet into my morning coffee, and to leave a couple of sachets sticks in my handbag and desk to include in my lunch or midday tea
  • Taste:
    – Honestly, the peach-flavoured sachet taste so good on its own. You know how collagen from renowned brands (even Meiji) has this overwhelmingly strong fishy taste? Whilst Vida Glow’s marine collagen is not completely devoid of that funky deep-sea odour, it is tonnes less unpleasant on the olfactory senses. And the smell can be rather entirely masked when mixed in strong tea or milkshake.
  • Safety:
    Vida Glow only produces 100% natural products that contain no artificial flavours, colours, additives or preservatives. It is also free from wheat, gluten, allergens, soy, lactose, dairy, sugar, carbohydrates and fat. Their flavoured collagen powders contain natural fruit flavours and also come with the added goodness of vitamins for extra doses of antioxidants. What’s not to love? If this alleviates any worries, stringent laboratory tests ensure that Vida Glow collagen is free from toxins, heavy metals, and pollution.
  • Variety:
    – Vida Glow boasts 4 delicious collagen blend flavours. I’ve tried the peach-flavoured one, and it mixes very well with porridge, yoghurt and soup at lunch or dinner. Yes, the blend is pretty heat-stable too. I love my peach-flavoured collagen in smoothies, shakes and fruit juices! If ever I do try other flavours, I’ll let you know how they taste like.

Vida Glow Singapore Collagen

Vida Glow Peach Marine Collagen

In this section, I’ll share a little bit more on each flavour. As mentioned earlier, I loved the natural Peach flavour, made with natural Peach Juice powder. On its own, peaches are rich in phytochemicals called phenols that act as antioxidants. This peach-flavoured powder also comes with added Vitamin C and Green Tea extract for an extra dose of antioxidants which are essential for healthy hair, skin and nails and protection against cell damage!

Vida Glow Peach Collagen (Pink)

90% of the time I never leave the house without some form of sun protection on my face, to guard against pre-mature skin ageing. From what I understand, photo ageing happens when damage from UV rays affect skin cell function, usually reflected in rougher, drier, wrinkled and less elastic skin. Ageing is accelerated by the sun’s UV rays which speeds up free radical production while at the same time depletes antioxidants.

The antioxidants boost in Vida Glow drinks will aid in counteracting free radical activity, just as Vitamins A and C (though minimal and inadequate in a single Vida Glow peach sachet) which are both found in peaches, are notable in protecting and hydrating the skin. In addition to daily collagen supplements, a diet rich in Vitamin C helps develop resistance against infectious agents, assisting in stronger immune health. Which is why Vida Glow is a helpful and convenient daily supplement to a healthy and beauty-conscious diet.

Peach Collagen Vida Glow (Pink)

Could fit 10 of this in my travel purses! I won’t need to fret over inadequate nutrition on my holidays.

Peach Vida Glow Collagen (Pink)

Peach flavoured collagen Vida Glow

Vida Glow Natural Marine Collagen

Vida Glow’s natural marine collagen is a fibrous protein extracted from the scales of Deep Sea Red Snapper, sustainably sourced from the Western Central Pacific Ocean waters of Australasia. Whilst the other collagen powders are enhanced with natural fruit flavours, I concur that the natural marine collagen smells a tad fishier. Given a choice, I’d definitely go for flavoured collagen.

I must add: the turquoise-emerald-coloured sachets are a real eye-candy!

Marine collagen is usually derived from fish and can be extracted from the scale or skin; Vida Glow uses the scale as it is richer in nutrients and collagen protein. Japanese women have used marine collagen as secret weapon for youthful radiance for many years, and the studies showing the benefits of taking marine collagen are plentiful. And I’m a sucker for that stuff.

Vida Glow natural marine collagen review asia

Being a 100% natural product, Original Vida Glow marine collagen contains no artificial flavours, colours, additives or preservatives. It is also free from wheat, gluten, allergens, soy, lactose, dairy, sugar, carbohydrates and fat. Au naturale – I totally dig that.

Natural marine collagen - Vida Glow Review

The marine collagen is of low molecular weight hydrolysed collagen powder, making it easy to digest and absorb. The rate at which these powders get absorbed into my smoothies and coffees are very convincing indeed. Research compounds this belief that consumable collagen has a higher bioavailability and absorption rate, and when regularly ingested over long periods of time, collagen fibres are formed to strengthen the collagen matrix below the dermis, the inner layer of the skin.

Natural marine collagen - Vida Glow Asia

It’s easy to understand why the Original Vida Glow remains the favourite in Vida Glow’s range as it’s the most convenient to include into your daily diet with the majority of their customers reporting no taste or smell, making it ideal to stir into any food or drinks. I guess I may have more sensitive taste buds – which is fine! As Vida Glow’s flavoured marine collagen options are just perfect for me.

Vida Glow Collagen BeautyVida Glow Collagen Beauty Blogger

I just love how their range of collagen powders come in such funky, pop colours ♥

Vida Glow Collagen Review

The wooden tubes are so fun and instagrammable!

Vida Glow Collagen Online Beauty

Psst… For all my dearest readers, I’m sharing this beauty secret with you via an exclusive code.

Quote “VIKTORIA10” for 10% off your purchase of any collagen products from Vida Glow ♥

Who’s with me? I’m including collagen into my daily diet to prolong longevity of youthful hair, skin and nails. Even if scientific studies have been inconclusive as proof of its obvious efficacy, boosting your body’s essential composition will not go wrong.

Have a Vida Glow-ing day today!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

About Vida Glow

Vida Glow offers a range of natural supplements that nourish hair, skin and nails from within. Our marine collagen is pure hydrolysed collagen peptide and comes in powder form, making it incredibly easy to stir into your favourite food or drink.

Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies, amounting up to 70%. Until our mid-twenties, our bodies naturally produce collagen. As this production slows and eventually stops completely, we begin to see the effects of ageing. Replenishing collagen levels will help increase the building blocks that maintain our hair, skin and nails.

Including Vida Glow in your daily diet will help stimulate your body’s natural supply of collagen, increasing elasticity, hydration and firmness in your skin, as well as repairing weak or brittle nails. Vida Glow assists in the growth and strengthening of your hair, adding extra shine and helping rejuvenate dry or damaged hair.

Collagen is a protein that is vital to maintaining healthy muscles and connective tissues. Therefore your tendons, ligaments and cartilage greatly benefit from taking Vida Glow marine collagen, notably preserving joint and bone health and encouraging muscle toning and definition.

Vida Glow will also assist with dealing with daily stresses of toxins, late nights, poor diet, sun damage and harsh environments.

Vida means life and with every servings the aim is to give you with a little extra “life glow”.

Are You A #NARSissist?

Well, I am.

NARS Singapore, Lipstick Eyeshadow primer, Cheek StainNARS Singapore

NARS True NARS Lip Pencil Set

NARS Singapore True Nars Set Lipstick Pencil

The shades in this series are: Yu, Luxembourg, and the limited edition Provocative Red.

TRUE NARS Lipstick Set NARS Singapore

Top to bottom:

Yu is described as a “shocking pink.” It’s a bright, fuchsia pink with cool undertones and a soft sheen.

Luxembourg is described as a “vivid watermelon.” It’s a brightened, pinky-red with cool undertones and a satin finish.

Provocative Red is described as a “fuchsia rose.” It’s a muted, medium-dark reddish-plum with warm undertones and a matte finish.

NARS Singapore TRUE NARS Makeup Lipstick Set

And can I just say, not only is the hard plastic packaging very sturdy, it is also incredibly modern and artsy. Definitely throwing this travel-sized three-some into my luggage.

NARS Dual Intensity Blush – Frenzy

NARS Singapore Cheek Stain Viktoria Jean

Loving this day-to-night, purely pigmented color with seamless customizable coverage. NARS’ Dual-Intensity Blush defies genre with a silky, wet/dry formula of unprecedented artistry. The shimmery gold is surprisingly wearable, and oh-so-gorgeous!

NARS’ exclusive Translucent Prismatic Technology features pearls and pigments perfectly suspended in transparent soft base to allows for multi-dimensional effects with a uniquely weightless, luxurious texture.

NARS Singapore Frenzy Cheek

The compact size is, again, so great for travel.

NARS Frenzy BlusherNARS Singapore Frenzy

NARS Pro-Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base

For the eyeshadow fanatic, this lightweight base extends the wear, smooths the surface, and maximizes color. Great for anti-smudging, creasing, or migration when used as a primer underneath eyeshadows.

NARS Singapore Eyeshadow PrimerNAR Singapore Pro-Prime Eyeshadow primer

Ciao, smudged eyeshadow.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Holler Out! Pondok Jawa Timur

Dinner at Pondok Jawa Timur  on a Saturday Night, before our excursion to the iLights festival at Marina Bay. Thank you Aveline for hosting us!

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore

Before I go deeper into the authenticity of Pondok Jawa Timur’s Indonesian cuisine, I wanted to touch a little bit on HOLLER OUT, the latest foodie-tech app on the block, available on both iOS and Android. When you quote “VIKTORIAJEAN” on @holler.out app, with a minimum spend of $30, you get 10% off your total bill! In addition, you automatically become an ambassador for Pondok Jawa Timur by using my promo code on payment.

What Holler Out app does is to encourage word-of-mouth and social media affirmation of bistros, cafes, bars and restaurants. By sharing your code, or using someone else’s, both parties benefit! Because as an ambassador, you gain a teeny share of cash in your stash, which you can choose to cash out in future. As a code-user, you stand to get 10%-20% off your total bill. As a restaurant owner you get loads more social media mentions by being a participating vendor. Currently there’re more than 40 vendors, including spa and recreational outlets, and the app is ever expanding.

Pondok Jawa Timur is a participating vendor, and if you use my code “VIKTORIAJEAN” when you dine, you get a 10% discount. Simple relational equation. Use it now!

Let’s talk food now. Here I am, holding the Bakwan Jagung, or the simply irresistible fried minced corn cake and prawns. When I think about Indonesian food, my vocabulary falls short and stops somewhere between “Chendol” and “Ayam Penyet”. Hence, dinner at Pondok Jawa Timur was really an educational tour of the Javanese food culture.

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore Viktoria Jean
Dan decided to crash my photo. Hahha.Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore Viktoria Jean

I love how our rice came in 3 colours: White, Green and Yellow – Green being pandan-infused and yellow being tumeric-infused. The restaurant’s signature prawn crackers go so well with rice, and almost every damn thing, that its scattered all over our dishes. We had crackers for starters as appetisers.Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore

Avocado is supposedly healthy fat, and does wonders for your skin. This rich avocado shake comes with creamy chocolate sauce, and is the best drink to ruin all diet plans…and to make your skin smooth as a slab of butter. Choose wisely.

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore avocado

Who am I kidding? I choose avocado chocolate any damn day.

Thanks to our fabulous host, we enjoyed this array of dishes and almost had to roll our fat bellies out of 737 North Bridge Road. I especially enjoyed the Sate Ayam sticks, as we all know, are grilled chicken skewers served with special peanut sauce. Their sauce is smoother and definitely less chunky than the version that I’m used to eatting from Satay by the Bay or East Coast Park. And the taste is less peanut-ish, and stronger on garlic and spices.

As you can see, there are 3 types of soups in the photo:
The one furthest away is the Rawon, or the rich tasting Javanese beef black soup. Ayam Kare is the one in the middle and it’s essentially chicken curry.  Then there’s Soto Ayam, or  Tumeric Soup with shredded chicken, boiled egg and vegetables.Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore 1

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore satay

That delectable dish in the forefront is the Ayam Penyet – the traditional fried chicken served with fried tofu, tempeh and sambal belacan. Loved it! It’s crispy and crushed tempeh actually tastes like pork floss.Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore
Beside the curries, beef rendang and its traditional spice blend with coconut milk sauce goes perfectly with rice. It’s so good.Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant SingaporePondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore
This is the Ayam Bakar Kecap, the marinated grilled chicken with sweet sauce. I like it that it resembles teriyaki, and retains the heavy spice-infused flavour of most Indonesian dishes.

Ayam Bakar Kecap – $7.90Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore

Satay Sate Ayam 5 Sticks – $8.90Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore Satay
And the Bakwan Jagung (3pcs) – $6.50Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore

I loved this! Chicken curry/ Ayam Kare – $7.50Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore curry

Ayam Penyet – $6.90Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore ayam penyetThe Tahu Penyet (3 pcs) $2.50Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore Tempeh

Beef rendang – $8.90Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore beef rendangIkan Asam  – $9.50Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant SingaporeSambel Goreng Kentang Kering, or crispy sambal potato  –  $2.00Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore side dishes

Sambal Kacang Ikan Teri or Sambal fried anchovy w nuts – $2.00Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore side dishesPondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore

Kerupuk (prawn)  –  $2.00 / pktPondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore crackers

Of course, what’s a meal without desserts?

Introducing the Ice Campur ($4.50), a classic Indonesian ice shaved dessert served with chendol, grass jelly, young coconut and atap seed. Yummy! A must-have for the recent wave of humidity. 

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore chendolPondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore chendol

We were also served the Ice Kepala Muda Gula Jawa ($4.50), shaved ice with young coconut served with javanese sugar. Very interesting combination that tasted of gula melaka and sweet fresh coconut. 

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore Chendol 2

This is the Ice Teler ($4.50), an all time favourite Indonesian mixed ice served with young coconut, jackfruit and avocado! I loved this one especially, as there was a hint of lime and tasted super refreshing. I think I can eat one all on my own.

Pondok Jawa Timur - Indonesian Restaurant Singapore desserts

Opened by Indonesians, this restaurant has authentic recipes down to a T. Plus the prices are very affordable at the $13 – $20 range for a good full dinner. For Pondok Jawa Timur’s full menu, check out their website, or head down to their homely physical store at 737 North Bridge Road. I know I’m definitely heading back there for more Indonesian food soon!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Launch Party: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Following my review on TruLife Collagen Manuka Max, I had the pleasure of attending the launch party for this amazing new contender in the collagen market!

The launch was held last Friday, 4 March, at the homely Two Bakers Cafe on Horne Road, just opposite the Jalan Besar Stadium. Upon arrival, we were greeted by this gorgeous dessert bar!

Trulife Manuka Max desserts

If you’ve never visited Two Bakers Cafe, it’s time you should! Known for bespoke birthday cakes, artisan pastries and one-of-a-kind, crafted-to-order desserts, the cafe’s pastry chefs boast credentials from the Le Cordon Bleu. You can pretty much guess why desserts were one of the highlights of the evening. The Panna Cotta, Mini Chocolate Cake (oh-so-pretty), and the Yuzu Lemon Mini Tarts were simply to-die-for.

Trulife desserts viktoriajean

Other Trulife products, such as the Berry Eye Health, also found their way into some of these desserts. I found it novel to incorporate health supplements into indulgent food.Trulife Manuka Max Collagen Desserts

Well this is my true intention 😀

Dessert Bar viktoriajean Trulife Manuka Max Collagen

Okay back to the talk of the day: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max.

Midway through dinner we were given a short introduction to the brand and product, as a prelude to Collagen Cocktails and Desserts. Essentially, Trulife is a contemporary health-care brand which aims to answer the health and lifestyle needs of today’s society through developing products that contain a combination of herbal and western ingredients. Founded in 1971, the brand has since evolved into a custom formulator and contract manufacturer of private label health and food supplements.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max 1 event

Trulife Collagen manuka Max Launch Party

The Collagen Manuka Max is their latest product, which has been pushed to major pharmacies, including Watsons and Guardian stores nation-wide, earlier this month. Each bottle of Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is packed with 7000mg of Micro Marine Collagen Peptides that have been clinically proven to help improve your skin’s structure and firmness.

Each bottle contains 7,000mg of collagen, Manuka Honey, Cynatine, Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, B2, B3 and B6, as well as Zinc. Plus, put your mind at ease, as the product has no added sugar, nor any form of additives and colouring.

The new collagen drink is packed with a protein Cynatine known to reduce wrinkles, promote skin elasticity, improve nail strength and reduce hair loss. We all already know how collagen repairs UV spot damages, promotes clearer complexion, improves skin appearance, and is a valuable component of any beauty regime. More information in my previous post (link here).

Dieters, this will not ruin your diet plans – you’ll be delighted to know that the product is naturally sweetened with 100% pure and natural Manuka Honey that helps to give you a nutritional boost every day. Additionally, studies have found that Manuka Honey is actually beneficial at reducing reflux and balancing your digestive system to heal stomach and intestinal imbalances, hence aiding digestion. For me, this drink has been a delicious add-on to my daily supplement intake.

One of the chefs at Two Bakers’ Cafe gave us a demonstration on a special mocktail/cocktail recipe formulated with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max (which has a unearthly green colour, but is perfect for fancy cocktails!) We all got to try a glass of this unique cocktail.

Cocktail with Trulife collagen manuka max

Wanted to give more airtime to the yummy desserts. The unassuming cup of yellow jello-looking thing is Panna Cotta, made with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max and it was my favourite dish of the night! The frosty glass on the left is the aforementioned cocktail. And the chocolate cake is on the right with the fancy sail made of white chocolate on top.

Seriously, everybody loved the Panna Cotta dessert! The recipe for it includes a full bottle of TruLife Collagen Manuka Max to produce the honey gelee, on top of the 1/2 cup of peach juice, 1 tsp of gelatin and 2 tablespoons of water. The resulting panna cotta gelee is moderately sweet and fruity enough to pass off as a healthy jelly dessert. The panna cotta base is incredibly soft-whipped, I must say!

TruLife even revealed the full recipe, and I’m gonna try my hands at making one of these! (Psst…want the recipe? DM me!)

Trulife, cakes at Two Bakers cafeCakes at Two Bakers Cafe

We all wanted to try the fancy chocolate cake! It looks as good as it tastes.

Two Bakers Cafe cakes

Loved the spread!

Cakes from Two Bakers Cafe SG

I'm here for Collagen Max!

Those were the main highlights of the launch party.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max launch partyWe’re loving this new handy bottle of beauty supplement.

Also gotta say, dinner at Two Bakers Cafe was amazing – I chose the Butternut Mushroom Risotto from the menu, which was the dish-less-selected as opposed to the traditional Aglio Olio. All my table neighbors could smell a heavy dash of truffle oil. And those who tried the risotto agreed it was the better of 2. Honestly the last good risotto I had was at Venice in 2013! Heartening to know a place that serves a mean risotto in Singapore.

Risotto - Two Bakers Cafe
It is a compact but carb-loaded heavyweight, so don’t be fooled by its portion here.

 

Two Bakers Cafe x Trulife

The rest who had aglio olio couldn’t help digging into my risotto. Altogether it was a lovely night mingling with the other bloggers and friends. Truly grateful to Trulife and Blackbox SG for bringing us together!

Trulife x Two Bakers Cafe Event

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

I don’t get why I look so bored and unhappy in this photo, because I swear I was smiling so hard. I guess the photo was distracting me from ogling at desserts and chatting with my new friends.Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

Viktoria Jean Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Thank you for the invite!

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is now available at all major pharmacies, Watsons, Unity, Robinsons and Metro, retailing at $58.80 for 8 bottles.

You can also get your samples from BlackBox SG!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Staycay @ Hotel Jen Tanglin

Welcome to Hotel “Jean” Tanglin, a cuppa hot chocolate anybody?

hotel

Fooling around with Club Lounge amenities as though this place was my own. ‘Local flavour’ and ‘home’ are indeed the overarching themes for the old Traders Hotel at 1a Cuscaden Road, which has gone through a SGD45 million makeover to become the spunky new Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore!

The establishment was reopened just December last year. I was thrilled to get a weekend stay at the spanking new building, and even more excited to share these pictures of my experience! One of the highlights of the stay was dinner and breakfast at J65 – the hotel’s new restaurant with the look and feel of a local farmer’s market, serving the freshest seafood and other authentic Southeast Asian cuisine.

Well, that’s a story for another day.

There should be a disclaimer at HJTS to warn travellers they might end up not leaving the room altogether. No, seriously. I had a really well-rested stay-in weekend at HJTS. I believe business or leisure travellers looking for a good night’s rest at a convenient location, as well as local staycationers looking for a change of scenery, would find HJTS fulfilling for all their needs!

Ready for pictures? Here we go!

1713

My room at 1713 is a fine sight to behold – I was thrilled to get a room on Level 17, which was on the Club Lounge floor.
Hotel Jen Tanglin 1

HJTS’s 565 new, contemporary guestrooms come with four modern, locally curated wallpaper designs highlighting different Singaporean themes (bicycle, orchid, goldfish and shop house). Each room includes thoughtful touches such as free WiFi, USB charging outlets, high-pressure walk-in showers and king-sized beds with 300-thread-count linens. So I guess mine belonged to the shophouse theme. I love the thoughtful furniture and comfortable colour scheme. The incredibly soft comforter and sheets trapped me between them for most part of Sunday.

bed @ hotel jen tanglin

wall @ hotel jen tanglin

hotel jen tanglin 5

Everywhere is OOTD-worthy!

Queen at Hotel Jen Tanglin

Hotel Jen Tanglin 2

It’s a crime for pillows to be this fluffy.

Hotel Jen Tanglin 12

And the bed.

home hotel jen tanglin

Hotel Jen Tanglin interior 3

In other new, the view outside is incredible. We lounged on the couch overlooking this amazing view, and just talked for hours. 

view outside my window hotel jen tanglin

hotel jen tanglin 6

hotel jen tanglin 7

love live laugh hotel jen tanglin

hotel jen tanglin shoes

hotel jen tanglin floor

lights hotel jen tanglin

Business travellers, your needs will be serviced. The ultra comfortable chair, fuss free desk and password-free WIFI access gives you unlimited usage for multiple devices, so you can get work done in peace. I would have spent more time on that chair if the bed wasn’t so inviting.

business hotel jen tanglin

bright blue chair hotel jen tanglin

See what I mean about fixtures? Very tasteful.

Hotel Jen Tanglin Amenities

And this housed the minibar/fridge:

fridge at hotel jen tanglin

colours hotel jen tanglin

FLUFFY PILLOWS hotel jen tanglin

selfie at HJT hotel jen tanglin

bathroom hotel jen tanglin

bathroom hotel jen tanglin

The Club Room’s stay-in pull has a room service menu to match, so you won’t have to leave the premises. Penang Char Kway Teow, anybody?

room service menu, hotel jen tanglin

And for all other F&B needs, you have the Club Lounge at level 17!

Club Lounge

Most of everything you’ll need can be found at the business cum amenities lounge, where anything from a quick caffeine fix or a highball for the night is within reach. Here, we fixed our much needed morning cuppa and bedtime hot cocoa. Fruits, snacks and tea are available 24/7, with a wide selection of cakes and finger food between meals, so you’ll never go hungry. This is a also great business meeting place.

hotel jen tanglin - club lounge coffee

Care for our ‘National Drink’?

singapore sling, hotel jen tanglin

club lounge HJT hotel jen tanglin

seats @ club lounge, hotel jen tanglin

club lounge business, hotel jen tanglin

Spoilt for choice at tea break!

tea break HJT

club lounge hotel jen tanglin

hotel jen tanglin - club lounge eats

strawberry cheesecake, hotel jen tanglin

tea break @ hotel jen tanglin

hotel jen tanglin tea club lounge

Hotel Interior

Millennials’ll be delighted by the abundance of Instagram-worthy spots at HJTS! From hipster bicycle walls to inbuilt swings and a Singaporean theme wall – there are no lack of OOTD spots for the new age soul.

Hotel Jen Tanglin

Hotel Jen tanglin 11

rooms hotel jen tanglin

Hotel Jen Tanglin 10

I'm Staying With Jen - Hotel Jen Tanglin

Yup, I’m Staying With Jen!

Stay tuned for mouthwatering foodporn at Hotel Jen Tanglin’s J65.

Thank you HJTS.

Hotel jen Tanglin welcome

blogger hotel jen tanglin

Also just learnt that a colleague of mine is holding his wedding banquet at HJTS in June. Can’t wait to be back here for another stay.

Book a staycation at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore today!
Click through this Link for their room rates and deals.

About Hotel Jen Tanglin:

This stylish modern hotel is 6 km from the lively Marina Bay Sands and 7 km from Universal Studios Singapore.

The polished rooms with midcentury decor come with free Wi-Fi and luxe linens, plus flat-screens and tea and coffeemaking facilities. Suites offer separate living rooms, while upgraded suites have Nespresso machines and microwaves. Room service is 24/7.

Amenities include a lounge with city views, casual dining and cocktails, plus a chic restaurant and a cafe. There’s an outdoor plunge pool, an exercise room and a spa area with massages. Free shuttle service is available.

Address:
1A Cuscaden Rd
Singapore 249716

 

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

BlackBox SG – Formula 10.0.6 Review

I first noticed Formula 10.0.6 on a Priceline Pharmacy shelf in Brisbane because the brand’s bold words and bright perky packaging were hard to miss. I’m really ecstatic to try this oft-heard of skincare brand that has been around for 83 years. Thank you BlackBoxSG for allowing me to review FORMULA 10.0.6!

Psst… don’t forget to apply my code ‘BBXJEAN10‘ at checkout for 10% discount off your entire purchase! ♥

So the products I got to test were:
☆ Seriously Shine Free Mattifying Oil-Free Moisturizer (75ML)
☆ Three Times Sublime 3-In-1 Blackhead Wash+Scrub+Mask (100ML)

☆ Pores Be Pure Skin-Clarifying Mud Mask
☆ Deep Down Detox Ultra-Cleansing Mud Mask
☆ No Time To Shine Oil Absorbing Mud Mask


Seriously Shine Free Mattifying Oil-Free Moisturizer
This matte-finish moisturizer contains guarana and Vitamin B3 to keep skin smooth and shine-free all day. The energising Guarana extract recharges tired skin while the combination of Vitamin B3 and Salicylic Acid helps prevent excess oil secretion, leaving a seriously shine-free complexion. This all-new formulation is derived from a predecessor, the Aloe Vera and Bamboo Mattifying Moisturizer.

I first noticed the product’s interesting fragrance – I still can’t put a finger on what it smells like! A pleasant mix of aloe vera and eucalyptus?  With a touch of tea tree, so altogether a pleasant, clean scent. The product has a a thin consistency for people who dislike thick viscous formulae. When applied, I felt a slight stinging sensation all over the areas in contact with the cream. The stinging sensation stopped after the cream was fully absorbed into my skin within 2 minutes. The mattifying effect lasted on my skin for approximately 4 hours after application, before my face naturally became oily.


True to its mattifying properties, the cream is fast-drying and leaves no sticky residues. Under my usual sunscreen and foundation, I used this as an oil-control base to keep my shine in check. For a long time after application, the pleasant scent remained on my skin!

A component of the product -Aloe Barbaden Leaf Juice – is chock-full of vitamins, minerals, cell-detoxifying acids, and also anti-inflammatory ingredients like salicylic acid. Often described as the ‘life-force of aloe vera’, the extract helps to shrink pores and sooth acne flare-ups, while nourishing to avoid over-drying sensation. I learnt this while googling the product ingredients to find out what was contributing to that incredible fragrance.
Three Times Sublime 3-In-1 Blackhead Wash+Scrub+Mask (100ML)

Three Times Sublime was first launched in 2012. The product annihilates blackheads and clears up your skin by simultaneously removing excess oil, unclogging pores and eliminating dark blemishes. It’s 3-in-1 formula which acts as a foaming wash, exfoliating scrub and mud mask for the complete complexion overhaul.

I wasn’t expecting such a thick scrub with that many jojoba beads, but thankfully the product worked well and didn’t feel scratchy on my skin. The product smells au naturale and fantastic thanks to its Pink Grapefruit and Pomegranate formula. For 15 minutes, with the product on my face, there was zero irritation. Just a small tip: leave your Three Times Sublime in the refrigerator before application for an amazing cooling effect!

Being an ultimate time-saver, the product is ideal for the busy socialite…and basically anyone who wishes to save time on skincare. Pink Grapefruit, a subtropical citrus fruit with an invigorating and uplifting fragrance to boost your mood, is one of the ingredients, along with  Jojoba beads to exfoliate dead skin cell, leaving your skin super smooth and blemish-free.

Directions to application: Apply to freshly cleansed and dried skin. Apply a thin coating over face and neck, avoiding eye area and allow mask to dry for 10-15 minutes. Dampen face and neck and massage gently until skin feels clean and smooth. Rinse thoroughly with warm water. Pat skin dry. For best results use three times per week on alternative days.

Mud Masks
☆ Pores Be Pure Skin-Clarifying Mud Mask
☆ Deep Down Detox Ultra-Cleansing Mud Mask
☆ No Time To Shine Oil Absorbing Mud Mask

I managed to test all 3 mud mask trial kits. Formula 10.0.6’s Deep Down Detox Ultra-Cleansing Mud Mask was my absolute favourite – the product smells refreshingly warm (I love the fragrance!) with its sea-salt, bergamot and orange combination. There was a heating sensation which tingled my skin which I didn’t find unbearable at all. In fact, that’s when you know the product is working its magic.

The Deep Down Detox Ultra-Cleansing Mud Mask is beige-pinkish in colour, and completely opaque. The cream glided onto my skin with easy finger application. The hard part comes when getting the product off! After leaving the product on for 15 minutes, the layer dries and hardens, making it harder to remove. Just a tip: use warm water and a soft washcloth (which I usually do for all liquid face masks).

I noticed significant difference from ‘pre mud-masking’ to ‘post mud-masking’ – my skin was visibly brighter and my pores weren’t as visible. I can even forgive the slight drying effect that comes with the detoxification process, because my face felt thoroughly cleansed of all the impurities from makeup and accumulated sun damage. For just 10-15 minutes of your time every week, the effect can be amazing. This is great for anyone feeling as though your skin can hardly breathe from the amount of makeup you’re putting on everyday. Loved this product so much that I’m planning to get a full-sized tube of Deep Down Detox!

Directions to application: Apply to freshly cleansed and dried skin. Apply a thin coating over face and neck, avoiding eye area. Allow mask to dry for 10-15 minutes then rinse thoroughly with warm water. Pat skin dry. Use 1-3 times per week.

No Time To Shine Oil Absorbing Mud Mask is one of those face masks that works perfectly after a day out in the sun. The product consists largely of sea kelp and calendula – a little flower that packs a reputation for healing, soothing and antiseptic qualities. Sea Kelp normalizes the skins moisture content and helps heal blemishes due to antibacterial qualities. Concerns over sun damages are allayed at the end of the day when this mud mask helped soothe my skin. Despite its oil-absorbing claims, the product does not dry out the skin. I’m particular about product fragrances, and this one has an herbal deep-sea scent which I love!

Pores Be Pure Skin-Clarifying Mud Mask  clarifies the skin by eliminating impurities and clearing blocked pores. With the help of Strawberry, Yarrow and Rosemary, Pores Be Pure works to provide your skin with instant complexion perfection. The product is packed with antioxidants, which in any case is great for your skin and health in general. I found this product mediocre, and didn’t detect significant skin-clarifying results on my first usage. Perhaps I just need to use this a couple more times for that to show. Nonetheless, there is a mildly sweet scent to this product which matches the pink packaging and girly strawberries content.

All in all the mud masks are great value-for-money in terms of face masks. I do greatly recommend the Deep Down Detox!

About Formula 10.0.6
Jesse G Bell brought Ten-O-Six to life in 1933 with the first hero product lotion. The brand took off in 1950, when the product hit Seventeen magazine in the US, promoting complete complexion care. In 2008, the brand underwent a revamp into their current vibrant packaging, perky product names and even more star products to banish blemishes. The current range includes skin care products specifically designed to promote clear, healthy skin.

The range is now exclusively sold at selected Guardian Pharmacies in Singapore. You can also find incredible Formula 10.0.6 deals at BlackBox SG!

Visit BlackBox SG for more skincare magic!
Get the exclusive set with all the above products: Here.

Don’t forget to apply my code ‘BBXJEAN10‘ at checkout for 10% discount off your entire purchase! ♥

Check out my past review of TDF skincare sets, also available at BlackBox SG.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

The Ultimate Cheat-Sheet To Decluttering Your Vanity Space

(Article originally published on HIPVAN, January 26.)

All beauty lovers face the same problem: they find their room gradually being taken over by skincare and makeup products. Lipsticks all over the desk, toner bottles under the bed, sunscreens in the bookshelf and a skincare stash littering the floor. Does this sound like your bedroom?
Come every Chinese New Year, creating order in your vanity space is possibly one of the most neglected duties! For convenience, many ladies leave their beauty stash out in the open, all of which goes into a shoebox somewhere during relative’s house visits.
Watching beauty YouTubers organise their vanity space have inspired many solutions for decluttering beauty essentials. Once you begin organising that beauty space, a little bit of OCD will possibly get you addicted to keeping lipsticks, brushes and skincare products spick and span, nothing out of place. (Psst… All the products below can be found at HIPVAN.) Here’s our 10-step cheat-sheet to a more organised vanity space:

1. Check That Expiry!

The HipVan Blog

Don’t be afraid to throw out unfinished products that have been around longer than you can remember! Skincare products (serum, lotion, face cream) are typically good for 1 to 2 years upon unboxing. As for makeup, the shelf-life depends on the nature of product. Throw out mascaras after 3 months of use, lipsticks after a year, and compact foundations after 2 years or more. A good rule of thumb to follow before purchasing full-sized skincare products is to test out miniatures, before deciding if you would use the product often on a long term basis.

 

2. “You spin my head right round…”

The HipVan Blog

(Click on image to see the product)

Too many knick knacks lying around, are they making your head spin? YouTube Vloggers have started trending the craze of spinning vanity organizers for a while now! The Tabletop Spinning Vanity Organizer holds over 100 pieces of your everyday beauty essentials, arranging them in specially designed compartments for ultimate efficiency. What’s more, it spins (so you won’t have to!) for easy access to your skin care, cosmetics, or other grooming supplies conveniently!

 

3. Let’s Hit The Bar

The HipVan Blog

(Click on image to see the product)

In the midst of spring cleaning, don’t forget your skin needs defense against the drying, clogging effects of dirt and dust. Mini Beauty Bar might just be aptly named when used to store the perfect thirst-quenchers that your skin needs. The double-tiered crystal-clear acrylic drawers will keep contents visible and organized while adding the perfect sparkle to your room.

 

4. Tender Loving Care (TLC)

The HipVan Blog

Your products need a little TLC in order for them to love your skin. The first thing you touch before applying the products to your face is the exterior of the product aka the bottles. Do wipe down the surface of your skincare products during spring cleaning to avoid the transfer of bacteria to your face! Precautions are worth it.

 

5. Stack Them Sky-High

The HipVan Blog

A smart way to save on space and still keep a neat vanity space is storing your vanities in stackable acrylic drawers. Most acrylic organizers are build in such a way that they can be stacked on top of each other, so make use of this idea to build your own Empire State of Beauty.

 

6. Brush Up On Your Cleanliness

The HipVan Blog

Brush cleaning can be a chore, but not having your brushes cleaned at least once a fortnight breeds germs and other unspeakable dirts. Powder residues will also build up in your vanity space, making your storage area altogether unhygienic! Make sure to use shampoo or a brush cleanser for frequently-used makeup brushes. Also keep your brushes neat and tidy with the Swirly Acrylic Makeup Brush Holders

 

7. Spin Me

The HipVan Blog

(Click on image to see the product)

Want a fun unconventional way of storing your beauty products? This 4-Section Acrylic Swivel Organizer saves a whole lot of space and still keeps storage fun by having the swivel function in each tier. Store more than just your skincare products! This is a fun way to keep your jewellery, lipsticks and hairclips in plain sight.

 

8. Playing Hooky

The HipVan Blog

(Click on image to see the product)

The Bow Dress can do so much more than it looks! Sticking to the fun side of storage ideas, this hookable Bow Dress can be hung up in your wardrobe to stash products that are used with lesser frequency, yet still keeping the products within your sight. This way, you can still view all your beauty stash at a glance. Let’s get hooked up!

 

9. Cutting Corners

The HipVan Blog

The Acrylic Corner Organiser saves you a tonne of space by taking up the most underrated spaces: the corners. Utilise every corner of your desk, table-top, room edges!

 

10. Size Matters

The HipVan Blog

(Click on image to see the product)

Keep your storage light and simple with the Acrylic Triple Tier Mini Storage Box – this baby is perfect for miniature sized skincare testers. The diameter is also perfect for cotton pads, cotton wool, nail polishes and nail-art paraphernalia.

So now you have your space organised, no more excuses on stocking up your favourite beauty brands this CNY season!
For more information, visit BlackBox Singapore at blackbox.sg to get your beauty miniatures.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Look Gorgeous For CNY With New VANITEE App!

As it gets closer to Lunar Chinese New Year, I tend to avoid making salon bookings because – (1) I try to avoid inflated CNY surcharge; and (2) There are a lack of good time-slots that fit into the schedule of a working adult. But honestly one can’t deny possible last minute grooming emergencies, or the need to impress an annoying distant aunt who’s always commenting on your looks or demanding to know your latest dating/marriage status.

So I found out that VANITEE, Singapore’s largest online beauty and wellness marketplace, was launching their VANITEE app! This app bridges over 500 verified beauty professionals with consumers in order to make it easier for us to explore, discover and book beauty services.

The app’s relatively easy to navigate and the bookings are instantly guaranteed to avoid disappointment. Moreover, you can be rest assured about the quality of their booked beauty artists, as all artists on the platform have been VANITEE-verified!

For all my readers, make any booking on VANITEE by 14 February 2016 and get a FREE Beauty Kit from VanityTrove worth $30 when you use this promo code – “VIKTORIACNY“!

I got to test out the 3D Eyelash Extension and Express Manicure service by Specialist Nail Center @ Bayshore area. I was impressed that my booking was instantly confirmed. 3 minutes later, I was chatting with Jane, the beauty artist at Specialist Nail Center, who instructed me how to prepare for the session (to have my eye makeup removed, and preferably no contact lenses). I could see the ratings for each and every beauty service provider, as well as how many times their services were booked, so it makes the decision making process easy!

4 Simple Steps to Book Your Beauty Service:

  1. Select your desired service – Nails, MakeUp, Hair Styling, Brow & Lash or Everything Else
  2. Select your beauty artist based on location or price. Screenshots below~


  1. Choose your desired date and time!
  2. Book now, pay later!

 

So all in all, I took 8 minutes to book a next-day appointment.

Other beauty services offered on the platform include formal dinner makeup and hairstyling, mani-pedis, brow grooming, lash extensions, as well as facials and massages. You can even browse new beauty trends, designs and like pictures on the app with the ‘Search & Discovery’ function! Really cool.

For all bookings made between 18 Jan and 14 Feb,VANITEE assures customers that the appointments are confirmed and guaranteed. The VANITEE app is now live with ongoing promotions – bookings will entitle you to win prizes such as $30 VANITEE gift cards and VanityTrove boxes. Get a sure-win ang pao with any booking made during the period from now till 14 Feb 2016!

Book your CNY beauty services now before it’s too late! Last time I checked, there are still slots available on VANITEE but they’re limited and running out fast.

Happy CNY in advance everybody 🙂

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean