Skin Edit: The Importance of Eye Serums… That I Never Knew I Need

“The most beautiful art is looking into someone’s eyes when they talk about the things they love,” – Anonymous via Pinterest.

Since the beginning when a romantic poet wrote a love poem, or when a melancholy wrote a tragic love story, they always describe the importance of the eyes. The eyes, some say, are the window to our souls. In reality, the eyes are indeed the fastest give-away how we are feeling, healthy wise. Whether you are tired, dehydrated or simply so stressed out that you can’t have a good night sleep, your eyes will let the world know your body’s state of mind.

Firstly, the area around our eyes do not produce their own oil (less sebaceous glands) in comparison to the rest of our face. This resulted in our eye area being less protected to aggressor or free radicals in comparison to the rest of our face. Secondly, the skin around our eye area is much thinner in comparison to the rest of our face, which again, make it a little more sensitive in comparison to the skin on the rest of your face. When your skin is dehydrated, usually it will show around the area of your eyes as dark circles, or fine lines. Lack of sleep usually gives you the dreaded eye bags or panda eyes with what appears to be a darker ring around your eyes, gorgeous.

For the longest time, I do not really pay much attention to the area around my eyes. I have to say, I do not necessarily deal with terrible dark circles or much fine lines. However, approaching the 30 years old mark, I started to notice the way my foundation sets on the fine lines under my eyes. Late nights on Netflix really did not help with my sudden development of puffy eyes either. Anyway, all these kick-start my journey to discover the best possible solutions to issues I am faced with, around my eyes…

I present to you, my secret duo that have been tackling my issues and become my new essentials, L’Occitane Immortelle Reset Eye Serum (top) & L’Occitane Immortelle Precious Eye Balm (bottom)

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L’Occitane Immortelle Reset Eye Serum

  • The latest in the Immortelle Overnight Reset family, this eye serum can be use as a booster base for your other eye cream/eye balm and effective enough to be use on its own. Here’s a breakdown of the important ingredients,
    • Immortelle Essential Oil, Marjoram Extract & Acmella Olarecea, the same three ingredients combo in the Reset Face Serum are also present in the Reset Eye Serum. The ingredients basically helps with boosting antioxidant to protect your eye area, wakes skin’s cells in order to ensure efficacy of ingredients and relaxes your skin with the use of Acmella, which is known to be nature’s botox
    • Botanical Compound,  which includes ingredients such as, centella asiatica that has been formulated specifically for the eye area to help reduce fine lines, dark circles and puffiness
    • Caffeine, much like the effect of caffeine in coffee for our body, caffeine is an effective ingredients used in many eye products for its ability to promote circulation and reduce puffiness
  • Why I love? Firstly, I love, love the fact that this serum is fragrance free! L’Occitane is a brand that is known to be sensorial, and quite famous for their fragrances, hence I am glad that they have decided to forgo that for this product. Secondly, I love the fast absorbing and the light texture of this serum. You only really need a pea sized amount on your ring fingers, quickly break the yellow bubbles and gently massage around your eye area.

L’Occitane Immortelle Precious Eye Balm

  • Newly formulated in 2019, the Immortelle Precious range is definitely such a delight to have in your routine. The important ingredients are,
    • Immortelle Essential Oil, which gives a great anti-ageing benefit to the skin, stimulate collagen production
    • Caffeine, just like a shot of espresso for your eyes, it helps to stimulate the circulation around your eye area, which in turn will help to reduce puffiness
  • Why I love? I fell in love with the texture of this eye balm, even though it is advertised as a balm, it is very light textured and fast absorbing. I love the sensorial scent of most L’Occitane products, but the Precious range is especially refreshing

At the end of the day, many people still believe that eye cream is a glorified version of your face cream, a way for a brand to make that extra cash. I do agree with the sentiment to some degree, however, I do think some eye creams have potent ingredients that could really benefit to refresh the window of your soul. I have been enjoying these two eye creams the most and been also applying them along my smile lines.

Since there are so much confusion in regards to eye cream and their benefit, Consumer Advocate spent a lot of time and research to provide an in-depth review and valuable information to see if eye cream really works. If you are interested in their research and findings, be sure to click on there link, http://www.consumeradvocate.org/eye-cream

-k.

Style Journey: Wardrobe Edit, a shopaholic way to fulfil her impulses without spending the money

“Why Grey? Cause my ideas are colourful…” – Unknown via Pinterest

I believe that it is in the make-up of my being that I am in love with the grey, navy and black. Possibly caused by growing in a city like Melbourne, who is so devoted to black, grey and navy are where I feel safe to express colour. However, once in a while, I will add a pop of other colour to my outfits to brighten my cloudy winter’s days.

Images via Pinterest, Death by Elocution

Ever since I have simplified my wardrobe and sticking to the minimalist approach, I get inspired to spice up my outfit through the varying shades of block colours. Whenever I need to update or hit refresh on my wardrobe, I always get plenty of inspirations from the world of street style photographies and do a quick edit of what I have. I find that doing a regular style edit of my own wardrobe, satisfied my inner shopaholic self. I managed to trick myself into thinking that I am shopping but I am not spending the money.

Images via Death by Elocution, Pinterest

Here are few simple steps I usually followed when I do my wardrobe edit,

  • Get Inspired
    • Using Pinterest or Instagram, I would give myself time to search specific trends I want to look up. My most look up search on Pinterest are, street style, minimalist style, minimal fashion and I would do a seasonal search of, winter or summer style
  • Pick 5-days worth of looks you want to emulate
    • From my Pinterest/Instagram search, I would pick up to five looks that I am inspired and loved the most, so much that I can see myself wearing the outfit combinations
  • Break down the outfit, go to your wardrobe and “shop” what you have
    • This the most fun part of the whole wardrobe edit for me. From the outfits photographs that I chose, I would break down each pieces and see what items I already have in my wardrobe
  • Take photos of your outfits with your phone, I use Polaroids cause I feel like my own magazine fashion editor 🙂
    • Using pieces from my wardrobe, I would do an outfit flatly on my bed and take photos of these outfits. I make this a fun and creative activity for me. Having these records on my phone or polaroids, helps shortened my time of picking what outfit to wear in the morning
  • Complete your look
    • In the occasion that you do not have certain piece in your wardrobe to complete your looks, I would make a purchase to complete my outfit. Here’s the important part, if it is a “trend” piece which will only be an IN look for this season, I would not invest too much of my money and would look into places like, ASOS or Uniqlo is one of my favourite

Images via Pinterest

I do my wardrobe edit twice a year, only when the season changes. I only do summer and winter wardrobe edit, our spring and autumn never last for very long here in Melbourne, hence I feel like I just extend my summer into spring and so on. Being in winter right now, I did my most recent wardrobe edit at the start of country-wide lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19 Corona Virus. This time, I added lilac jumper, burnt red oversized hoodie both from Stylenanda and an oatmeal coloured puffer jacket from Uniqlo. What style inspired you most lately?

-k.

Style Journey: A Call To Minimalism…

“Minimalism isn’t about removing the things you love. It’s about removing the things that distract you from the things you love,” – Joshua Becker

I love that quote. It gives me a clearer perspective on why I need to declutter my life. including my wardrobe. Ever since I was allowed to work part-time, I always chose to work in fashion retail. The love for both fashion and shopping are probably the biggest propeller of this career choice I have made for myself. For the best eight years of my working life, I have dedicated it to fashion retail and I have enjoyed most things about that experience, however I have also accumulated an insane amount of clothing items that I absolutely do not need. Here is the turning point…

Images via Pinterest

Over the years, my knowledge of who I am as a person have matured along with time. I have been quite comfortable with my being, body shape and all, for quiet sometimes now and clothes I wear have always been a my way of portraying who I am to the outside world. I am more drawn to simplicity, I am drawn to the quality of things rather than the quantity I own. My sense of style evolved and I am more drawn towards comfortable yet stylish outfits.

Images via Pinterest, Death by Elocution

Gathering my inspirations and thought on amazing platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest, I slowly begin my style overhaul, so to speak. Finding items in my existing wardrobe, shopping from my own closet, curating items I love and wear often while donating items that no longer serve a purpose in my wardrobe. I began to notice my most loved and most worn clothing pieces are in grey, navy or black, how very Melbournian of me. The two pattern I seemed to love are stripes and polka dots, and clothing items within these two pattern qualifier I have managed to reduce in quantity to the bare necessities. I am glad that I go on this style journey towards Minimalism, because I now open my wardrobe everyday, with a huge sigh of pleasure. I am enjoying the moment of being with my clothing pieces and plan my outfit for the day. Most items are so easy to mix and match, and because I do not have unnecessary clutter covering clothing pieces I love, I have since stop saying to myself, I have NOTHING to wear…, which is a nice problem to not have. My current style obsession is matching hoodie/tracksuit pants with cool camel coat/jacket over the top, so effortlessly cool and comfortably chic on a different level.

What’s your current style obsession?

-k.

Culinary Journey: What’s Up With… Dalgona Coffee

“A day without coffee is like, just kidding… I have no idea,” – Anonymous

If you are of the millennial generation, addicted to YouTube and a proud owner of TikTok, chances are you would have heard about this coffee…

Dalgona Coffee, although gain massive popularity in South Korea, is actually originated in Macau, China. The 400 times whisked coffee was featured in a South Korean reality, celebrity cooking competition called, Fun-staurant. One of the celebrity competing, Jung Il Woo, in search on foodie inspirations, went to Macau and discover this whisked coffee. Being a very popular reality show, evidently it inspired many South Korean, who happened to be stuck at home because of Covid-19, to take TikTok and YouTube by storm and the rest is history.

The recipe is so simple, all ingredients are 1:1:1 ratio

  • 2 tbsp Instant Coffee, black coffee won’t work with barista grade coffee for coffee machine or 3 in 1 kind with premixed sugar/creamer
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp hot water

You mixed all three ingredients and just whisk your life away. If you want it to be super fluffy, marshmallow like foam, you need to use an electric whisker cause your arms might fall off otherwise. If you are happy with a thickened cream consistency, your arm power will suffice. I love to pop this over ice and cashew milk. Cashew milk is honestly a recent discovery and I have fell hard for it.

Honestly, once you mixed the whisked coffee with milk, the drinks pretty much resemble a latte. The taste however, is on a different level. The coffee is creamier when compared to normal ice cafe latte and I don’t think I can drink coffee any other way, aside from Iced Americano, which is still my go-to. Dalgona coffee is definitely more like a treat, because as I’m writing this, like many of those South Korean before me, I am stuck at home, self isolating from all the corona craziness that is out there.

Let me know if you do give this coffee a go? You can always take a photo, post on Instagram and tag me http://instagram.com/karina.mandala

Stay safe and healthy everyone…

-k.

Skin Edit: Then I Met You… A Month In Review

“At Then I Met You, we believe now – in the age of distraction – it’s time to go deeper,” – Then I Met You

Have you ever experienced that instant deep connection you have towards, someone, some thing or some place, that you just can’t explain? In some sense, this is the definition of the Korean word, Jeong. There’s no literal translation of the word in English language, but the meaning behind the word it truly beautiful. To the Then I Met You team, it means a deep and meaningful connection that encourages empathy and generosity and with this ideals, the team rooted everything that they do with each products they created for their customers.

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For many people who knew me, aside from the fact that I am obsessed with skincare, I have a strong connection to the Korean culture. I am surrounded by amazing friends who are of Korean background, I enjoyed their cuisine, their language and their sense of humour. My visit to Seoul felt more like a true pilgrimage rather than a mere holiday, because it refreshes my mind and I came back inspired. I suppose it’s back to that word again, Jeong, I definitely felt that towards South Korea, especially Seoul. Guided by the same feeling of connection, I discovered Korean beauty and finally, Then I Met You. 

For the longest time, I could not get my hands on them because Then I Met You do not ship overseas. But I am so thankful that they decided to make their products available on Soko Glam, which an online Korean beauty store co-founded by the same person that created Then I Met You, Charlotte Cho. I always loved shopping at Soko Glam because of all their well curated beauty brands and trust worthy recommendations.

The products that I purchased are, The Living Cleansing Balm, as a duo with Soothing Tea Cleansing Gel, as well as the other duo consists of, Birch Milk Refining Toner & The Giving Essence. As I am writing this, the team is about to launch their latest product, which will be a moisturiser, can’t wait for it to be available on Soko Glam so I can get my hands on it too.

I have used these four products exclusively within my PM routine for the past month and these are some of my thoughts on each individual products,

  • Living Cleansing Balm

I love the sorbet like texture. I am a huge balm cleanser fan and I do rank this quite high up on the list of my most favourites, if not number 1. This balm is created with few star ingredients such as,

    • Sea Buckthorn Oil which is known to be rich in fatty acids
    • Persimmon Extract helps to capture free radicals and prevents premature ageing and photo damage. It is also an ingredients with a known skin brightening properties
    • Olive oil, grapes Oil and Vitamin E, all are powerfully nourishing oils, high in antioxidants that helps to remove oil based impurities

Why I love? The balm is easily spread on your dry skin and emulsify beautifully. When you wash it off, there are no trace of oily feel on your skin. You’re pretty much left with supple, clean and soft skin

  • Soothing Tea Cleansing Gel

The second step to your double cleansing, this cleanser features fermented rice water (sake) that meant to help clear impurities and soften the skin. It’s star ingredients are,

    • Licorice root which is an effective antioxidant and natural skin brightening
    • Rice Ferment Filtrate is rich enzymes and amino acids to nourish your skin
    • Centella Asiatica a popular ingredient that help to increase moisture content in your skin
    • Green Tea is calming and very high in antioxidants
    • Tea tree lead is antimicrobial and anti inflammatory, also gentle for acne-prone skin
    • a PHA in the form of Gluconolactone which gently exfoliates, without sensitising the skin

Why I love? Enjoys the light tea scent of this cleansing. I am pleasantly surprise by the fun jelly-like texture, a little weirded out to start with but enjoys it now. The cleanser does not foam like crazy, which I personally love because it does not feel stripping for the skin

  • Birch Milk Refining Toner

This toner is designed to be used daily that will give you more than just simple hydration for the skin. Instead of water, the base of this toner is 76% concentration of pure birch juice, so you know the team at Then I Met You do not mess about when it comes to delivering highly efficient product to us, their customers. The star ingredients in this toner are,

    • Birch Juice off course. Birch juice has a skin-soothing and hydrating abilities while packed with amino acids, enzymes, antioxidants which includes Vitamin C and B3
    • Squalane derived from squalene, which our body produce naturally to maintain moisture in our skin. Squalane happens to boost cell regeneration while allowing other ingredients to absorb more efficiently into our skin
    • Marshmallow root is an anti-ageing plant extract that helps to reduce inflammation and fine lines while hydrates and protects the skin
    • Glycolic, Lactic Acid (both AHA) & PHA, both are gentle skin exfoliators, which helps to remove dead skin cells in order to encourage new skin to come to the surface. The combo also helps to counteract hyper-pigmentation and reverse the effect of sun damage

Why I love? First of all, I find the light tinge of violet of the toner to be a surprise, aside from that, this toner also has a slight fermentation scent, which reminds me a little of SK-II or Missha Time Revolution First Treatment Essence. I was so excited to receive this product, it happened to arrive on the day that I got my monthly acid peel done at my aesthetician, therefore the moment I pop this toner on, my skin experienced a slight tingles. Off course, it was because of the AHA & PHA exfoliating element within the toner, but thank goodness the toner is gentle enough that my skin was not irritated from he accidental double exfoliation LOL

  • The Giving Essence

The last on the line-up (for now), the treatment essence designed with over 80% naturally fermented ingredients, it hydrates your skin, but also work harder on giving your skin its youthful radiance back. Some of its awesome ingredients are,

    • Black chokeberry which apparently have the highest recorded antioxidants which contributes to skin’s youth and radiance
    • Elagic Acid protects skin from UV rays, collagen degeneration and harmful bacteria pathogens. It also said to be a safer alternative to other brightening ingredient
    • Polyglutamic acid instead of hyaluronic acid, because this water soluble holds four times more moisture
    • Galatomyces derived from fermented sake to reduce appearance of pores, blackheads and sebum, decreasing level of acne and improve skin brightness
    • Red Algae which gives the essence its amazing colour, contain a high concentration of calcium. Happens to gently exfoliates, remove dead skin cells, reduce fine lines and brightened complexion

Why I love? I like the thin, more watery texture of this essence. I can not get over how pretty the packaging looks, for all of the products, but especially this essence. Anyway, side tracked, I love that this essence is fragrance free, despite having so many fermented ingredients. Within the month of me using this essence, I have noticed the lack of breakouts on my chin, which usually occurs around the time of the month.

Final thoughts on Then I Met You…

If I can only recommend one product from the line, the Living Cleansing Balm is definitely a clear stand-out for me. From the texture, the way it emulsify and the way my skin feels afterwards, this cleansing balm is a step above the many cleansing balm I have tried.

I honestly think using the combination of the Birch Milk Refining Toner with the Giving Essence, have definitely helped my skin’s overall more radiant look. Therefore, it will be hard for me to recommend one and not the other. I have a huge amount of respect for Charlotte Cho and her team at Then I Met You because you can feel the amount of thoughts that goes into every ingredients chosen to be in their products. You feel their passion for the brand, their products but above all, you can tell they want the best results possible for their customers.

-k.

Skin Edit: My Current Facial Serums

“Beautiful skin begins with exceptional skin care.” – Anonymous via Pinterest

In my personal opinion, one of the most important step within your skincare routine is treatment. If you really want to see the difference in your the way your skin look and feel, I think adding a serum in your skincare routine is definitely the most effective. Over the years, through trial and error, I have finally found the perfect active ingredients that work best tackling my skin concerns.

Some of my main skin concerns are, hyperpigmentation, hormonal breakouts and because I have oily skin, I get the craziest shine at the end of the day as well. I do not want to completely magnify my skin, but a more balance skin will be a top priority for me.

The best actives I find that has helped me wth my skin concerns are,

  • AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acid) such as Glycolic/Lactic acid, which always help with exfoliating dead skin cells and helps with brightening any pigmentation
  • BHA (Beta Hydroxy Acid) which is Salicylic acid, such a great active when you do get occasional breakouts
  • Vitamin C is definitely a super star ingredients in my AM routine, because Vitamin C helps with overall brightening of skin and evening out my overall skin tone

After plenty of trial and errors on my part, I am getting used to finding the right actives in skincare products, mostly serum, that helped me tackle my top skin concerns. Products in my skincare routine changes quite frequently, as I am testing different products all the time, but the following are the four my current rotation that I am loving.

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  • Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum

Peach & Lily is a skincare brand created by Alicia Yoon, Harvard Business Graduate who loved skincare and have passion in helping others get better skin. We all need a friend like Alicia. The glass skin phenomenon stems from South Korea, where people want to have this pore-free, smooth complexion and radiant glow on their skin. Some try to achieve it using makeup with a bunch of highlighter, I prefer to achieve it (or as close to it as humanly possible,) through the help of really good skincare.

Glass Skin Refining Serum is sole goal is to get your skin that glass skin complexion through the help of the following star ingredients,

    • Peach Extract known to be a source of many vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids that helps to promote skin’s firmness, radiance and refilient
    • Niacinamide the current superstar ingredients in many skincare products, believe to reduce inflammation. It has also believed to have many antioxidants which also helps to brighten skin
    • East Asian Mountain Yam Extract helps to encourage a more supple skin and helps to reduce flakes
    • Madecassoide derived from another star ingredient, Centella Asiatica, to help stimulate collagen production, reduce inflammation and soothe the skin
    • Hyaluronic Acid & Peptide Complex, hyaluronic acid is the hydration hero within this formulation while the peptides helps to signal collagen production, which will help to reduce fine lines or deeper wrinkles. Collagen is the key cells that keeps our skin looking youthful, as we age however, the production of collagen slows down (from 28-30 days, it can decreases to up to 50 days… oh dear…)

Why I love? I love the light, gel texture, which sinks quickly into my skin. The formulation is scent free and so gentle, I did not break out or react to it, which is always a good thing. I notice a different on my skin after about a month of constant use in my AM skincare routine, the overall skin tone is brighter and more radiant. The serum did not give me that glass skin look, off course, I think my oily skin definitely does that whole shiny thing on its own. HOWEVER, it works wonder for your overall radiance 🙂

  • Krave Beauty Great Barrier Relief Serum

Krave Beauty is such a wonderful skincare brand created by Liah Yoo, a beauty content creator on YouTube. I love how transparent the brand is when it comes to their products and the ingredients they use. I love how Liah shares many of the behind the scene and as consumers we get to meet the product’s producers/formulators, which is refreshing in the beauty industry.  The sole purpose of this serum is to restore any damaged skin barrier, help sooth your skin as well as, evening out your skin’s complexion. What I love the most about this serum is 2% of every sales will be donated to the preservation of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, which happens to be one of the world’s natural wonders.

Great Barrier Relief Serum is effective because of the following star ingredients,

    • Tamanu Oil which according to research it’s the type of oil that has a skin regenerative properties. Longed been used to heal wounds and cure skin problems or ailments
    • Safflower oil & Rosehip Seed oil are both used to add nourishments to the skin, as both oils are known to be rich in linoleic acid which can help to restore damaged skin
    • NMF (Natural Moisturising Factors)+Ceramides and Squalane Combo which mimic a healthy skin barrier because all elements are naturally found in our skin. The combination of the three ingredients helped to replenish skin barrier without compromising it or cause sensitivities
    • Niacinamide or Vitamin B3, but truly by now, we do not need to discuss the good thing about this ingredient 🙂

Why I love this serum? There are so many reasons why we can unknowingly compromise our skin barrier. The most common is definitely over exfoliation of the skin, however unseen factors such as hormonal imbalances or simple stress can also compromise our skin barrier. And since I have not seen many skincare brand come out with a serum solely to tackle this purpose, I am so pleased to have tried this one. The scent can be quite herbal, but personally, I do not find it unpleasant. As someone who goes to professional aesthetician once a month, this serum is definitely the one I reach for post-treatment and have helped reduce any skin peeling without causing any further sensitivity to the skin

  • Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Serum

Good Genes by Sunday Riley is definitely not a new name in the skincare industry. The first time I tried the product was because Caroline Hiron told me to ego for it and I want to thank you Mrs Hiron, for you have saved my skin. The serum is created to be a deeply exfoliating dull surface of our skin therefore helping us to achieve younger looking skin with radiance and clarity. The formulation also helps to brightens the appearance of age spots or any discolourations.

Good Genes is has the following star ingredients,

    • Purified Lactic Acid is the main ingredients of this serum, which gently exfoliate your skin to remove pore clogging dead skin cells which in turn gives the skin a more smoother and clearer overall complexion
    • Lemongrass Oil is included as an aromatic ingredient that also happen to be astringent and skin refreshing for toned complexion
    • Licorice has longed been included in skincare formulation for its ability to help reduce dark spots, age spots and discolouration, which resulted in a clearer and more even skin tone
    • Prickly Pear Extract or a rare dessert cactus is used to help soothe your skin, after all that exfoliation

Why I love this serum? I believe because I have a true oily skin, I do find that at the end of the day my skin can look quite dull and feel “thick” because of the oil layers on top of makeup that has been stuck on my skin. I find that all the time that I use Good Genes, my skin definitely feels and look brighter and clearer. This serum is definitely a powerful and effective, so caution if you have never used any acid exfoliation before. Introduce it slowly to your routine and remember to patch test

  • Sunday Riley C.E.O. 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum

A Vitamin C serum that created exclusively to help you brighten and even out your skin tone. This serum is also a more stable formulation of Vitamin C that helps to fade dark spots or age spots.

C.E.O. 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum has the following unique star ingredients,

    • Vitamin C (in the form of THD Ascorbate), which meant to be extremely stable and oil soluble form of vitamin c. It is here to help fight the signs of ageing such as dullness, visible loss of firmness, age spots or fine lines and wrinkles
    • Phytosterols Complex isolated from soybeans, the concentration of this ingredients help to reduce redness due to skin sensitivity
    • Saccharide Isomerate Extract is a water binding agent and good emollient for the skin, which can be particularly helpful for dry skin. This ingredient also helps to reinforce skin barrier for smoother, more youthful texture
    • Glycolic Acid is an AHA that helps to refine skin texture and help to keep formulas pH level balance for maximum effectiveness of the formula

Why I love this serum? Vitamin C is definitely well-known to be unstable and oxidise quickly due to environmental factors, e.g. once exposed to oxygen, or various temperature. I love the fact that the more stable formulation of this Vitamin C serum means that there will be no change of scent, texture and colour within the formulation. I do have to admit that you do see the results a little slower than a more pure Vitamin C serum such as, Drunk Elephant C Firma Day Serum, however, I really dislike the fact that the serum changes colour and clogged up the spout on the packaging with brown gel, not appealing.

Off course, the above are my own opinion based on my experience using each products. Always remember, what works for my skin might not be the best for yours and vice versa. Always patch test and ask for sample when you are wanting to try new skincare product. I believe that it is a lot harder to fix a damage skin, so take care and be very gentle with your skin.

-k.

 

 

 

Mind Journal: What in the World is going on?

In today’s uncertain time, I just want to share small thought bubbles to start with, before I begin decluttering my thoughts,

“Impact. You never really know the true impact you have on those around you. You never know how much someone needed that smile you gave them. You never know how much you kindness turned someone’s entire life around. You never know how much someone needed that long hug or deep talk. So don’t wait to be kind. Don’t wait for someone else to be kin first. Don’t wait for better circumstances or for someone to change. Just be kind, because you never know how much someone needs it,” – Nikki Banas

As I am writing this, from Melbourne, Australia, like every other country in the world, we are battling the one common enemy, Covid-19 virus. Let me just say, as someone who in my own personal opinion, do have a positive outlook on life in general, 2020 has been rough. We started the year with horrendous bushfire season like none we have seen before, the amount of loss we experienced both in human and wildlife were undoubtedly most distressing for so many of us.

Now, Australia currently has 11 deaths and over a thousand people affected by the virus and yes, I understand this is nothing like what is facing Europe right now. However, if nothing changes in the way people behave, Australia might face similar outcome as Italy or France. The government has been slightly confusing when it comes to restrictions they placed to its people. We are not allow to shop, but shopping centres are open. I understand the importance of maintaining the economy, but what will happened once all of that crumbles cause the virus has spread out of control? The economy will crash anyway…

Amidst all these uncertainty, I could not grasp my head around the fact that these uncertain time, bought out the worst in human’s behaviour. I have heard stories about racism towards people who are Asian, people selfishly panic buy and leave many people in actual need struggle for basic needs. I can not believe that in Australia, after the disaster that was bushfire where we are all came together as people, this pandemic managed to divide us apart!

I will not dwell on the anger or negativity, but I thought I just want to share small thoughts here. No matter how dire your situation might seem to you, most of the time there are other people who struggles more than you. Now it is not the time for competition of who gets it worst. Rather than looking inwards, why not try to look around and see if you can be of help to others. What we are experiencing is an unprecedented time in our history, how would you like history to remember us throughout this time? Would you rather be remembered as the generation that is filled with selfish, self-absorb people? Or would you rather history remember our generation as the group of people who come together in an unexpected tragedy and become closer, stronger and came out of the situation as one? I do not see another alternatives, we have to come together, we have to be kind…

-k.

Art Journal: KAWS Companionship in the Age of Loneliness, NGV International

“It’s just a combination of letters I liked. And when your whole art’s based on the lettering you choose, you kinda figure out what ones work together. I just liked the shapes of the k, a, w, s. It has no meaning.” -KAWS aka Brian Donnelly

Brian Donnelly, or you might be more familiar with his “artist” name, KAWS, is a New York based artists. His works span from traditional painting, giant sculpture, murals exhibited all over the world in a public space as well as in a gallery space. In my opinion, KAWS arts are not limited to the stereotypical art box, he certainly pushes the boundaries of what art can be. When a random giant Mickey Mouse-like giant inflatable sculpture floats around Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong, you know his artwork goes beyond the white walls of a gallery.

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KAWS most certainly tapped into the pulse of current trends and society, his artworks speaks to current generation in a way that perhaps no artist have done before. Alongside his exhibition in National Gallery of Victoria, KAWS created limited edition T-shirts design in collaboration with Uniqlo. The small act of adding a line of fashion merchandise in collaboration with the exhibition’s sponsor caused a relatively small chaos on the 4-storeys Uniqlo store in the centre of Melbourne CBD. The hype beasts are all out and ready, lining up for hours to get their hands on these limited edition T-shirt because they know the re-sale value of any KAWS merchandise can be absolutely ridiculous.

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Yes, Astroboy, I totally agree with your expression here. Face palm indeed. It might a phenomenon I will not and to some extend, do not care to understand. I wonder if half of these hype beasts even enjoy KAWS, the artist, or do they perhaps know him as a designer. Perhaps the same way they know Virgil Abloh of Off-White. His exhibition in National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, is quite conceptual and showcases many of his famous works. The curator had done an amazing job arranging KAWS artworks, from the beginning of his “graffiti” on advertisements to his larger than life sculpture he created exclusively for this exhibition.

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Is it art? Is it a mere imitations? Is he a genius? Is he a mere copycat who banked on the phenomenal success of other creatives? These are some of the questions I walked away with after my visit to the exhibition. The artist, Brian Connelly, does not seem to pay too much fuss of what you think about his work. Perhaps similar to the way he choose his “artist” name, maybe he just creates and not put too much meaning into his creations.

-k