NAILS | Heartbeat Nails #CBBxManiMonday

Heartbeat Nail Art
Some press samples (marked with *)

I still haven't gotten my groove back. I am still feeling so tired and even though our Inventory went well, I feel like I am still playing catch up on work and life. I did get an hour of quiet time at work when it was quiet to actually enjoy some online Chaumet training which was actually pretty interesting! I love reading about the features and benefits of new products so I often have to tell myself to do this type of reading ONLY at work and not at home! 

SHEET MASK | Chando Himalaya Comfrey Pore Tightening Mask


Purchased by me

I have often raved about T&T Supermarket and their wide variety of well-priced sheet masks. I especially like that they sell quite a number of Chinese brands as most sheet masks we see are Korean. On one of my more recent visits, I came across the Chinese brand Chando and a collection of sheet masks that involved some mountain wildlife and what reminded me of an Asian interpretation of Snow White. It was definitely the packaging that sold me on this and it was a hunch that ended up working out! 

SKINCARE | My Routine with Augustinus Bader

Augustinus Bader Skincare Review
Some press samples

The time has come for an honest to goodness skincare review that isn't a sheet mask! I have been eyeing luxury skincare brand Augustinus Bader for the last three years and took a tiny plunge by using my $100 Sephora gift certificate obtained through one of their Tues/Thurs point drops on The Essence and quite enjoyed it! Last year, I was given the opportunity to try The Retinol Serum and after 12 weeks I feel like I am finally ready to share my thoughts!

NAILS | Cirque Colors "Firecracker" Swatch (Magentic) Charity Polish

 Cirque Colors "Firecracker" Swatch (Magentic) Charity Polish

Purchased by me

I have been really exhausted for the last three weeks and just as I predicted last month, I had a ton of energy to blog and organize my life and then things just got tiring. I take naps on my days off at 12pm and one day I think I had three naps and still felt like my legs were weights. I have been grateful for the extra excursions for press events, but even with working some shorter weeks thanks to using the last of my vacation days, I have found myself really struggling to wake up in the mornings. I have been going to bed around 12:30am which I guess is still on the late side, so maybe I will have to be extra diligent about getting ready for bed earlier. This past week was a little busy as I was getting ready to attend the Fete Chinoise gala on Saturday and had to find a dress and shoes last minute as I was not planning on going, but then found a colleague to attend with me. This week is INVENTORY and I have talked about this "event" multiple times a year since I have started blogging and it is never fun and always exhausting. It has gotten progressively easier to handle as we do not have as much staff or stock as before, but the feeling of nausea never goes away after a 12-14 hour day.

SHEET MASK | Botanic Farm Natural Energy Mask Sheet in Aloe, Rice and Tea Tree

 Botanic Farm Natural Energy Mask Sheet in Aloe, Rice and Tea Tree

Press samples

It is the third week of my attempting #LunarFebruary and even though I miss having a feed of Valentine's pink and red, the only thing I have really liked about Valentine's Day was the nail art. I find the nail art that people have done, that I have done so much fun to do and it's all so cute! This year, I am also enjoying all of the dragon-themed stuff that brands have come out with like LEGO and their "Auspicious Dragon" and Coach with their embroidered dragon clothing and bags. Then there is Fendi with their Pokemon theme! I am dying over here, but I can't justify spending $4000 on a bag that I know I won't really use so I will have to admire from afar. 

SHEET MASK | I'm With Mugwort Sheet Mask Review

 I'm With Mugwort Sheet Mask Review

Purchased by me

It's Valentine's Day and we are talking about mugwort which I feel is an plant that has swept the Asian skincare market in recent years with one mask in particular that I keep seeing - the Mugwort Sheet Mask from Korean brand I'm From, a brand focused on "clean and natural ingredients" without any fancy packaging to ensure that the ingredients of their products take priority! While I haven't tried any other products from this brand, it does look like an interesting one and I have it on my list for the future once I get through some of my backlog!

MAKEUP | Youthforia BYO Blush Color Changing Blush Oil

Youthforia BYO Blush Color Changing Blush Oil
Purchased by me

When it comes to getting Youthforia on the map, THIS right here is the product that launched them into the social media stratosphere of stardom! The BYO Blush is "the world's first colour-changing blush oil" that like all other Youthforia products, is makeup you can sleep in with 98% of the ingredients in this blush being bio-based and coming from renewable sources. Apparently having this blush on your skin even helps with fine lines and when looking at the ingredients list, most of the ingredients are plant oils like jojoba, sunflower and olive fruit which are oftentimes what I use in my night time skincare routine so it makes sense! 

NAILS | Red and White Hearts #CBBxManiMonday

Red and White Hearts Nail Art
Press samples

I just really wanted to have red nails that worked for both Lunar New Year AND Valentine's Day and stumbled upon this juicy red in Gossip Mag from Canadian brand Trust Fund Beauty! This is the old packaging from eons ago, but I am so happy that TFB is still around as I started working with them more than 10 years ago when they were first getting started and then I sort of lost track of the brand. This polish still applied like a total dream though and could almost have been a one coater! I added some hearts using a dotting tool (I wasn't the neatest...) and then I was done! I have actually received a number of compliments on this manicure especially for the shade of red!

SHEET MASK | The Creme Shop x Hello Kitty Hello, Plump-kin! Printed Essence Sheet Mask

The Creme Shop x Hello Kitty Hello, Plump-kin! Printed Essence Sheet Mask 

Purchased by me

We have now officially entered the Year of the Dragon! Maybe it's the Asian in me, but I kind of feel like I get another chance at things with Lunar New Year happening a month after the calendar new year. I feel like I have an excuse to buy something new and look at my calendar again. I tend to use this time to see how January has gone and though I don't like to put a lot of pressure on myself anymore, there have been little things I have been motivated to do, like posting every day on my work Instagram (@jaynehlim) or trying to have scheduled blog posts. So far, so good, but from what I have noticed, my blog posts tend to taper off in the Fall. Is it prep for Christmas and the holiday season that kills my energy and motivation? Is it the fact that the weather is generally more depressing and it gets dark earlier? Quite possibly! So, I guess for now, I will enjoy these 8 months of productivity!  

NAILS | OPI Infinite Shine Exercise Your Brights Swatch

OPI Infinite Shine Exercise Your Brights Swatch
Press sample

How do days off go by so quickly? Tuesday, I knew would go by quickly as I was out most of the afternoon for the Kiehl's event and then stayed downtown until 5pm so that my husband and I could go home together. I actually had a ton of client stuff to take care of so I ended up going to work and catching up on a few things. I had three glorious days off and now I am on the last one and I am sad. I feel like I never really got a break and what makes me upset is that it was my own fault. I was the one checking my work email since I have a few big client things on the go and I even shipped my very first Poshmark sale! I've been pretty lazy about poshing even though I know it's all the rage now, but I have always been uncomfortable with the idea of selling to strangers. I would honestly rather just give it away and save myself the hassle, but I tried it and we shall see if the buyer likes what she purchased!

MAKEUP | Youthforia Date Night Skin Tint Serum Foundation

 Youthforia Date Night Skin Tint Serum Foundation

Purchased by me

I have been raving about Youthforia for the last couple of months and since it is Asian-owned and founded, it seemed like the PERFECT brand to showcase for #LunarFebruary as I usually don't get the chance to feature a lot of makeup brands. It is often skincare brands that are Asian owned and what is interesting about Youthforia is that the premise is that this is "makeup you can sleep in"! 

SHEET MASK | Prreti Cleanse Juice One Pack in Kale Bright Shine and Kohlrabi Moisture ChokChok

Prreti Cleanse Juice One Pack in Kale Bright Shine and Kohlrabi Moisture ChokChok

Press samples 

NAILS | Matte Cartoon Hearts #CBBxManiMonday

Matte Cartoon Heart Nail Art
Press samples

Continuing on with my #LunarFebruary theme AND gearing up for Valentine's Day (I only like the nail art and cheap chocolate on Feb.15th), today's featured brand is Cirque Colors, which is Asian-founded and owned by Annie Pham. In addition to some of the most unique colours and collections on the market, Cirque also creates "Do Good" polishes with a portion of profits going towards organizations like To Write Love on Her Arms, a mental health and addiction non-profit, City Harvest, a food equity non-profit and Vietnamese Boat People, a non-profit that works to share experiences and connect people to the history of the Vietnam War. I have only met one Vietnamese Boat person and she told me that she was only 5 when she escaped and while on the journey, she almost drowned and then ended up getting an infection that left her deaf in one ear. It was an incredible story and I cannot even imagine coming to a foreign country not knowing if you will even make it. 

SHEET MASK | Neogen Surmedic Bright Glutathione Mask

 Neogen Surmedic Bright Glutathione Mask

Purchased by me

This is the first #SheetMaskSunday of #LunarFebruary and we are starting off with one of the more "serious" sheet mask brands - Neogen! This brand never messes around when it comes to their ingredients and their masks often lean more to the derm/medispa side and involve technology and mask materials and shapes that are different than other brands. Today's sheet mask is no exception with its shape, material and ingredients!