Jun 29 2015

5 Reasons Why You Need This Eyeliner

Seeing a woman with running or smudged makeup is quite unsightly—unless they’re acting in a drama, in that case, a teary messy look is necessary. But for most of us ordinary people, a weather proof makeup is essential to keep us from wasting time doing touch-ups.

One very important part of our makeup is the eyeliner. After trying multiple waterproof products, I found out they eventually smudged anyway.  To cut to the chase, I tried this wonderful gel-type waterproof eyeliner that glides as smooth as silk. It’s from Tony Moly (a South Korean brand) and it’s called Perfect Eyes Gel Fit Waterproof Liner.


Here are the 5 reasons to love this liner!

Reason # 1: It’s GEL! I love this fact because it means it’s really easy to apply and it doesn’t hurt when you attempt to spread it across your eyelid like other pencils.

Reason # 2: Built-in tools! This eyeliner comes in a twist-type container and pencils of this type cannot be sharpened right? Well, this smart eyeliner comes with a sharpener too. It’s a cone-shaped plastic tool that will give you that defined eyeliner you want.

Plus it also has a sponge tip you can use—when the liner hasn’t dried yet—to create a sort of smoky look. I have to tell you this eyeliner dries rather fast so work as quick as you can if you want to smudge it.

Reason # 3: When dry, it doesn’t show a sign of scattering anywhere no matter how many times you blink per second. This is important especially for monolids whose eyelids typically swallow up eyeliners. I also tried rubbing it with my finger but nothing happened. This is also perfect for people living in tropical or humid areas where moisture frequently beats our make up.

Reason # 4: It’s available in more than 10 different shades to complement your skin and eye color.  You can get it from all shades of brown to black to even pink!

Reason # 5: It’s very affordable!

And there you have it! My five reasons why you have to have to this eyeliner. I have no regrets buying this product.

Feel free to leave your comments!



Nov 03 2014

Eyelash Growth Products

dr lashWant longer lashes without the hassle of using mascara? If yes, then I’m sure you’ve thought of using latanoprost. If you’ll ask your dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon, they’ll tell you it’s a drug that was originally used to treat glaucoma by facilitating the outflow of fluid in the uveoscleral tract. It is actually a prostaglandin analog and is available in ophthalmic solutions. However, its side effect—eyelash growth—was discovered and since then it has become known as an ingredient for beautiful thick eyelashes!

Latanoprost has recently been discovered to stimulate eyelash growth and some sources say it can be a treatment for alopecia of the eyelashes. Another prostaglandin analog that is effective for eyelash growth is bimatoprost. The latter has greater or similar efficacy than latanoprost in lowering intraocular pressure and also works better for eyelash growth; the bad news is that hyperemia or reddening occurs more often with bimatoprost.

Eyelash growth enhancers not only lengthen lashes, they make them thicker as well. Additional rows of hair grow and the color becomes darker.  What once were vellus hairs now become terminal hairs. Vellus hair refers to the ones that are thin and barely noticeable; with prostaglandin analogs like latanoprost and bimatoprost, these become terminal, meaning, thicker and longer.


But exactly how do these phenyl-prostaglandin analogs work for your lashes? Answer: latanoprost stimulates resting hair (resting hair is in the phase called telogen) to re-enter the anagen or growth phase of hair. To give you a better understanding, there are actually 4 phases of hair growth; namely, anagen (3-6 years), catagen/transition phase (1-2 weeks), telogen (5-6 weeks) and return to anagen. Latanoprost works on the dermal papilla and boosts the return to anagen phase. Scientists have also observed that hair follicles become bigger and the growth phase is prolonged.

Side Effects

Now, does lash growers sound perfect for you? Well, everything is not peachy. Watch out for its side effects! If it accidentally comes in contact with your eyeballs, it may irritate and cause it to redden which medical professionals call conjunctival hyperemia. Your iris and nearby skin can get darker, too.


When buying random eyelash growers, always check the ingredients listed at the back and know the active ingredient. If it has latanoprost or bimatoprost—and almost all eyelash growers do–well, at least now you know what to watch out for. Apply eyelash growers carefully to your lashes close to the roots but avoid smudging it too much on your skin. Choose the non-irritating brands if you have sensitive skin; LiLash and Latisse are popular in the market today. However, if you think prostaglandin analogs are not for you, there’s Idol Lash and Etude House’s Dr. Lash Ampoule. These products have several plant extracts designed to make your lashes healthier, thicker and longer; although I’m not sure if they could give you dramatic results.

So the bottomline is, be careful and bat an eyelash before using cosmetic products. Choose wisely and think before buying :)


Oct 31 2014

Cosmetic Collagen

You’ve seen collagen practically everywhere but what does it actually do for your skin? Does it really work or is it just another failed cosmetics concept? Several products work theoretically but do not deliver when it comes to actual human trials; this article will tell you if that is the case with collagen.

What is it? Collagen is a fibrous protein that plays a very important role in various structures of the human body. There are several types in the human body and they provide integrity to structures such as the skin, bone, tendon, cartilage, hair, placenta, etc.

What do you use it for? Collagen, as a food ingredient has a texturizing effect while as a cosmetic ingredient, it has a moisturizing effect on the skin. It is also known to make the skin firmer, treat aging signs such as wrinkles and skin sagging. Collagen is now seen in almost every cosmetics brand from America to Asia. It is available as an eye cream, night cream, serum, facial foam, mask, and filler.


How does it work? Native collagen, though present in several cosmetic products, is absorbed poorly by the skin. To be specific, it is absorbed by the epidermis but not by the dermis. Its function, therefore, is not dependent on its internalization; rather, it keeps the skin (stratum corneum) moisturized by attracting water towards it. According to a double-blind, random control trial, it also prevents wrinkles and boosts proliferation of fibroblasts.

Forms of collagen in cosmetic products? There are several forms of collagen used in cosmetics today. The more common ones are hydrolysate and gelatin. Hydrolyzed collagen is made from enzymatic hydrolysis of native collagen, followed by a warm water extraction which yields a more soluble form of collagen. Hydrolyzed collagen is also available in tablets, capsules, and even several foods like yogurts, dairy drink, soups, high protein bars and candies. There is much to think about regarding the effectiveness of oral collagen because what we eat is broken down in our stomach anyways. On the other hand, when collagen is irreversibly denatured, its strands separate into coils and this is what is referred to as gelatin. The role of gelatin in cosmetics is almost similar to hydrolyzed collagen—with its lowered molecular weight, it can be better absorbed by the skin and hair.

In East Asia, collagen is added to enhance cosmetic products; for example, Han Skin’s Snail facial foam (a Korean brand) which has snail mucin also contains collagen and elastin. However, it is better to use cream or serum form instead of facial washes or foams; that way the product will stay longer on your skin and allow absorption.

Collagen works wonders and its functions are not just limited to what I mentioned above. So be sure to try out collagen products for younger looking skin!



Chinese Journal of Aesthetic Medicine, 2008

International Journal of Cosmetic Science, 2005

Wellness Foods Europe, November 2006

Dec 31 2013

The Best Moisturizer

Moisturizing is part of a girl’s daily skin care regimen, but choosing the right type is also as vital as doing it. Moisturizers come in different forms including creams, lotions, and serums; but the more important thing to note is their base. Among these, the most common forms are oil-based versus water based.

Oil-based moisturizers are thicker, provide a sealing effect over the skin and are very good for people who have extremely dry skin. For people needing a medicated type of moisturizer, this is also better as the skin favors lipids and evaporation is slower thus giving the medicine more time to sink in. Harsh weather like winter also spells the need for heavier creams and lotions in order to protect against cold winds and skin burns.

Water-based moisturizers are light, thin and provide an airy feel to the skin, allowing it to breathe. They are good for people with oily, normal or combination skin. By using this type of moisturizer, consumers will avoid the sticky sensation left by oil-based ones. Best season to use? All except winter.  This is perfect for summer, autumn and spring but will not be sufficient for winter’s skin-drying effect.


Recently, I have tried this gel-based moisturizer with Aloe vera. The Nature Republic brand from South Korea is very popular and has received a lot of love from users all over the world so I thought I’d give it a shot and go get it once I have time off from the hospital. To my surprise the 300 ml product (which is quite big) is cheaper than an eyebrow gel or a small blusher. It smells very mildly citrusy and isn’t heady like Aloe vera lotions. When applied, it feels very cool and light; as it dries you will not feel its weight on your face. It feels as light as water actually. The catch? The Aloe vera gel’s moisturizing effect is not as long as other products; it is ideal as a day moisturizer but perhaps you can use other heavier creams at night. Overall, I loved this product and it’s going on my list of essential beauty products.

As a last pointer, when choosing a moisturizing, look for additional ingredients such as light perfume, antioxidants, plant extracts, collagen, vitamin beads, etc assuming you have no allergies to these. These will give you more benefits in one and whatever type of moisturizer you wish to buy, make sure to try it on your skin first. These things don’t come cheap nowadays and it’s important you choose one suitable to your sense of smell and touch–your best moisturizer. That way, you’ll be sure to use it every day. Have fun in getting your moisturizer!

Jul 29 2013

How to Treat Acne

Inflammatory Acne

Having problem with acne? To treat it properly, know which type you have. It may be inflammatory or non-inflammatory or a mix of both. The first type is the more obvious and worse; reddish papules (flat lesion), nodules (small elevated lesion) and pustules (raised lesions with pus inside) usually cover a large area of the face. Different causes have been proposed including hormones and the lipase of Propionibacterium acnes breaking down and freeing irritating fatty acids. Benzoyl peroxide works well with the inflammatory type by oxidizing Propionibacterium acnes, thereby killing the anaerobic organism. You can buy it in different brands and in different concentrations. Vitamin A treatments (retinoic acid, tretinoin) are also, if not more, effective in treating inflammatory acne. Remember to treat promptly, otherwise scarring can occur. Here are some tips to control inflammatory acne:

Tip # 1 – Use benzoyl peroxide after washing your face well. Do not scrub your pimples, they’ll only get worse and redder.

Tip # 2 – If you absolutely have to pop a pimple; make sure it’s far from the nose and that it’s shallow. You’ll know it’s shallow if you can clearly outline its opaque white round shape. Sterilize your needle and skin with alcohol and puncture at the side. Gently press out the pus if not all contents are emptied. Repeat sterilization afterwards. This procedure may also be done at a clinic and they call it acne surgery.

Tip # 3 – Avoid, or better yet, never pop pimples near your nose! If you puncture it, you risk further infection and it may spread backward to a confluence of veins in your brain called the cavernous sinus.

Tip # 4 – If you feel a pimple too deep and wide to let you do anything to it; don’t fret. Relax, dip a cotton ball in hot water and use it as a hot compress on the spot. Apply it repeatedly and make sure that each time the cotton comes in contact with your skin, it’s hotter or as hot as the previous one you applied. Use the highest temperature you can tolerate; not scorching, not burning, just hot. Press it on for a few seconds and remove it right before it cools down. You don’t want to solidify and stiffen up the pimple again. After a few minutes of doing this, I guarantee you’ll notice a significant change in size, redness and consistency. If you want an easier way out, use a Zeno Zit Zapper; it also works by heating up the pimple; it’s no mess and is simply handy.


The Zeno zit zapper uses heat to clear out pimples.

Tip # 5 – Cover pimples with a concealer only if you absolutely have to. If you’re staying home, don’t bother with make-up; it’ll only clog the pores and may stir up more trouble.

Tip # 6 – Observe proper skin hygiene. Remember when your teacher said an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure? Well, she’s right as always. You can actually forget everything but this one. As for hormone-induced acne, it’ll go away after puberty so don’t worry too much. Newer products have come out like Acne Pen which uses silver as an anti-microbial to treat acne. The market can keep coming up with higher tech products but it’s all up to you to discover the products that really work for you. Products aside, simply follow the tips above and enjoy pimple-free years! :)

Non-Inflammatory Acne


Notice black dots on your nose? How about small white mounds? This is acne and it’s the non-inflammatory type; it consists of the familiar black and white heads. Black heads are also called open comedones; they have a central keratin plug and are black due to melanin oxidation. White heads are closed comedones; they do not have a visible central plug. Unfortunately, there is no specific cure for the black and white heads; better skin care regimen and pore regulation are required to prevent recurrence. Here are some tips to minimize comedones:

Tip # 1 – Use warm water before applying facial wash so that pores are open and exposed to the cleansing effect. Wash off with water of a lower temperature to close off pores.

Tip # 2 – Try nose packs and pore strips for your nose area every now and then; they effectively pull out the keratin plugs and some unwanted hair. Try i White nose pack that works like glue and if you’re not a fan of the peel-off products, use nose clay masks like the one from Face Shop Black Head Ex Series.

Tip # 3 – Use a facial wash with subtle matte finish. This will lessen the oil on your face and keep it that way for a longer time. Be careful of choosing the brand, though. If your facial wash does give you a matte finish but is overly drying, stop using it. You will only feel sticky and oily when oil does come out on your now desert-like skin. Pond’s Pure White Deep Cleansing Facial Foam with activated carbon works well in giving you the clean feel without overly drying the skin. Gatsby Oil Control Clay Wash also works well. A lot of dermatologist, though would recommend a milder cleanser with lipids to better avoid dryness.

Tip # 4 – Last but not the least…wash your face well everyday and every time you feel the need to.

Jul 19 2013

To scrub or not to scrub

Fresh-Brown-Sugar-Body-PolishToo much of anything is bad and the same goes for scrubbing during baths. Scrubbing isn’t harmful per se but it’s the way we do it that determines its effectiveness. For me there are three things about scrubbing that makes it good: timing, strength and the right product.


Avoid frequent scrubbing of the face and body. I can actually do away with scrubbing the body; maybe once every month is fine. When it comes to the face, scrubbing every 2 -4 weeks is good enough. If your timing is too soon you won’t be able to appreciate the difference between a scrubbed and not-scrubbed skin. Your natural skin shedding is also once monthly so it is better to go along with the natural cycle rather than scrub too often which can cause thinning and reddening of the skin. Take note to not use scrubs if your skin is already irritated or inflamed like when you have acne.


Of course rubbing the body too hard with a sponge, towel or any product would cause petechiae (pinpoint bleeding) and tiny bumps to appear. And the face, well, it’s more delicate so proper products should be used. A light circular motion should be applied over the skin (with a facial or body scrub) and that should do the trick. Remember to not drag the skin too much and to not rub the face downward to avoid sagging.


apricotThe it product here is St. Ives Apricot scrub. Everyone loves it and it’s not hard to see why. Its main ingredient, apricot is a plant related to prunes and has been in use since ancient times.

Different parts of the plant—seed, oil, kernel, fruit—were used by traditional healers for its healing properties for the skin, digestive and respiratory tract. Its oil is said to be rich in essential fatty acids, vitamin A and E hence its antioxidant properties.



st ives

St. Ives has apricot scrubs formulated as ‘gentle’, ‘invigorating, ‘blemish and blackhead control’, and ‘renew and firm’. I use St. Ives scrub once a month on my face and absolutely love the feel afterwards. Its smell is fresh and citrusy and light. The scrub particles really help clean the face and not much effort is needed to use it. A simple—very light—circular motion is enough to do wonders for your skin. The effect afterwards is a very soft, matte, and clean skin.


This is a must-have in your beauty cabinet! Forget the expensive scrubs, St. Ives Apricot scrub is effective and is definitely worth its price.

As a scrubbing companion, sponges also help in keeping the skin’s softness. Choose the soft medium sized sponges to avoid abrasions and their size allow faster drying too.

Enjoy a healthful glow with proper scrubbing!

Jul 16 2013

Syringoma Cream

A lot of readers from the Philippines are asking where to buy syringoma removal creams. To make things easy, a local product is available called DeSyringoma from RCC Amazing Touch which I’ve already mentioned before.  Their product description is simple: ‘DeSyringoma is a topically-applied herbal cream preparation for the treatment and removal of syringoma, milia, molluscum contagiosum, fat deposits and other tiny papules effectively, and relatively painless without surgery.’

The company’s website accepts orders even abroad; there are pretty good testimonials about the company’s other products such as the DeMole and DeWart but none are available yet specifically for DeSyringoma. They also put up a demo video and I especially love it because it’s so easy to understand and it emphasizes the key point of application of the cream which is: DO NOT PUT IT ON SURROUNDING SKIN. Think of it as a very potent chemical that can burn through normal skin. Okay, that wasn’t meant to scare the potential customers; I’m simply saying that anyone who wants to use it should be very careful and follow instructions carefully. Oh and by the way, before heading off to buy it; I am actually not sure if non-doctors can purchase this. A picture of the product says ‘for authorized medical doctors use only’. But go ahead and try getting it; I guess it’s worth the try anyway.

The kit contains 0.05 grams of single-use pack of DeSyringoma herbal cream preparation. The kit actually looks neat.

amazing touch

You can visit their website to get more information.

Anyone already tried it? Feel free to comment and review :)

Jun 08 2013

Eyebrows 101

Defining Your Eyebrows

Women tend to neglect the eyebrows and focus instead on eye, lip and cheek make-up. Nowadays this has changed. The eyebrow provides a look with an overall feel and finish. It defines a look—whether it’s a mature or baby-face style of make-up or any other style you wish to recreate.


audrey-hepburn-mark-shaw-3-520x559Thick with minimal to no arch
At the top of the list is of course, the actress Audrey Hepburn. Her eyebrows are always drawn in a thick, strong and straight line. This style would make any woman look smart, firm but kind as well. Kind? Well yes. That’s because the minimal arch provides flair but will not make you look too tough, surly or old.









2011 Art Of Elysium "Heaven" Gala - Red CarpetThick with medium arch
Camilla Belle. Thick arched eyebrows complete her gorgeous look. The medium arch makes any woman look young and mature at the same time and ends up giving you the ‘I’m-young-but-already-successful -and-wise’ look.









angelinaThick with high arch
This reminds me of Angelina Jolie. High-arched eyebrows equal strength and maturity. However, it makes a woman appear scary at times if it’s too high.







Megan-Fox-eyebrows-beforeThin with high arch
Thin eyebrows aren’t really in season for several years now. But here’s Megan Fox years ago with crazy thin and highly arched eyebrows—the two things you don’t really want when you’re a fashionista.








Eyebrow shapes are generally easy to get. Straight says young and calm. Raised says mature and ‘think twice before coming near me’. I’m not saying one is better than the other; I’m saying you can use each style when you are at an appropriate situation or mood. Let’s compare using Camilla Belle. Picture A with minimal to no arch makes her look a lot younger while her medium arch in picture B gives a totally different impression of intelligence and maturity.

thick flat

East Asian cosmetics also follow this trend in thick eyebrows and minimal to medium arch. Pop singers look younger and fresher with thick straight eyebrow lines.


When it comes to eyebrow thickness, the fuller the shape, the younger you look. But of course you must strike a balance otherwise you’d end up like Pamela Anderson and Demi Lovato. Too thin versus too thick. Enough said.

too thin 2

Mar 18 2013

Carbon Dioxide Laser for Syringoma

Since many of the readers are interested in syringoma, mainly its treatment, I decided to add articles about the different therapies used and their effectivity starting with CO2 laser. This article shows what CO2 laser can do for syringomas.

Let’s start with a study done using 10 patients. Basically this showed very good results. Here, a high energy, scanned carbon dioxide laser was used with the settings of 5 watts, 0.2 second scan time, and 3mm spot size. Patients had their syringoma around the eyes treated and the results were evaluated by both physicians and patients. Including patients as evaluators is extremely important because they are the better judges of the improvement seen. This evaluation was done over a long time—1-24 months. Results showed that all 10 patients were successfully treated and they remained syringoma-free during the evaluation period. The most common side effect from the laser is erythema or reddening of the treated skin and good news is that there was no scarring. The authors then concluded that CO2 laser is a ‘dependable, safe and non-scarring’ method for treatment of syringoma.

Another study used CO2 laser with multiple drilling method. Eleven patients participated and this time evaluation was made with pre- and post-laser photos. All patients had good results and no scars, erythema or pigmentary changes were noted.

Laser seems to be very effective and further proof is its use in cases of refractory familial syringoma. The patients were already treated with 2 other therapies but did not show good results so laser was then tried. Sharplan 700 CO2 laser was connected to an operating microscope and each syringoma was irradiated separately with single pulses. The results showed that patients had superficial scabbing after 1 week but without edema or pain. However, for 1 month patients had mild reddening of the skin. There is no need to worry because this completely healed thereafter. On the second year after treatment, no recurrences were noted as well as scarring or changes in pigmentation.

Overall, CO2 laser is very effective as shown above in the 3 journals. For readers interested in getting the treatment, consult your dermatologist now and inquire about this promising treatment.

Castro DJ, Tartell PB, Soudant J, and Saxton RE. The Surgical Management of Facial Syringomas Using the Superpulsed CO2 Laser. Journal of Clinical Laser Medicine & Surgery. February 1993, 11(1): 33-37. doi:10.1089/clm.1993.11.33.
Park HJ, Lee DY, Lee, JH, Yang JM, Lee ES, and Kim WS. (2007). The Treatment of Syringomas by CO2 Laser Using a Multiple-Drilling Method. Dermatologic Surgery, 33: 310–313.
Wang, J. I. and Roenigk, H. H. (1999), Treatment of Multiple Facial Syringomas with the Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Laser . Dermatologic Surgery, 25: 136–139.

Apr 23 2012

Large Pores

One thing that contributes to an old-looking skin is having large pores. When you were younger, your skin including the pores is tight and this makes a smoother complexion. However, as years pass by, dirt and free radicals accumulate and age your skin; you start losing skin elasticity and your pores just go big. So what can you do to stop this? The best way is to have a good skin care regimen and don’t forget that the pores should be part of it.

How did you get large pores in the first place?

The sebaceous gland activity has lots of things to do with the enlarging of the pores, especially in the nose area. It starts with dirt and dead skin cells surrounding the pores; they build up and block the oil duct, a passageway to the top of the skin, and decrease the amount of oil secreted. This makes the sebaceous gland react by secreting more oil, thinking it has to compensate for the lack of moisture of the skin overlying it. And because the duct is still blocked, more oil secreted only means more blockage; this leads to dilation of the duct and the pore becomes stretched and enlarges as well.


While it is in no way serious, many people seek treatment for their large pores because they are aesthetically displeasing. The mainstay of treating large pores is, of course, simply taking the time and making sure your pores are always clean and unblocked. Here are the ways you can achieve smaller pores within weeks:

Chemical exfoliation: the peeling effect from using chemicals will take care of dead skin cells and help renew the skin. Examples of these chemical exfoliants that you may use are salicylic acid, glycolic acid, alpha- and beta-hydroxy acids.

Scrubs: as much as possible, go find facial scrubs with smaller, finer beads. They do a better job and do not cause unnecessary trauma to the rest of the skin like the larger coarser beads do. The scrubs are essentially used to get rid of the dead skin cells off before they can get the chance to plug into pores.

Nose packs: nowadays, there are self-heating nose packs you can apply to the nose area and you can wash it off afterwards. However, you don’t necessarily have to get the self-heating type, just the ordinary ones are fine and they do clean your pores nicely.

Nose strips: this only takes a few minutes of your time and you can do this once every week. Seeing the dirt, dead skin cells and keratin plugs stuck to the tape is definitely visually satisfying and I’m pretty sure you’ll get addicted to it.

Prevention: Before trying to find ways to tighten your pores, make sure it’s clean. Always avoid pollution whenever you can. Do not expose your skin to harsh fumes or even cigarette smoke. But if unavoidable, remember to wash your face immediately after with a mild soap or a facial wash that lathers nicely. Do not use non-soap based facial wash for this situation because it doesn’t wash off well and will leave a coat of film over your skin. It will moisturize the surface but will also seal in the dirt and pollution.

With a better understanding of pores plus the tips above, you’re sure to have a good fighting chance against large pores. Give your skin the care it needs and I’m sure you’ll see smaller, tighter pores in a few weeks! :)

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