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To Pork Buns and Old Friends

5 Jan

       Today I’m thankful for the pleasure of doing my friend’s family’s makeup for their dear brother’s wedding 😀 To Tita Nena, Tita Carrie, Lala and Vic, thank you from the bottom of my smokey heart! Wishing Vic and Miggy a lifetime of love and laughter 😀🙏 And thank you, Lala, for the delicious pork buns from Tim Ho Wan ❤️  You all look so beautiful as always 😍

 





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Brush It Off

6 Nov

Cleaning and caring for your makeup brushes need not be a chore 🙂

 High quality makeup brushes can be very pricey.   For us makeup artists, it truly is an investment. These premium brushes are built to last a very long time. Some of the makeup brushes I’ve had for years still feel brand new. What is important is how to care for them.

An easy way to clean them is by using regular shampoo. You may even condition them if you want just like real hair. Since I use my brushes on different clients, I really have to clean them after every use. But for your personal brushes you may clean them twice a week to avoid bacteria build-up.

Another brush cleaner I love is Parian Spirit. This is the cleaner I use when I need my brushes clean and dry in between clients. You just have to swirl your brushes in a container with this cleaner and you’ll see the makeup and dirt come off instantly. Then using tissue or a paper towel, just wipe and squeeze off excess liquid and in five minutes, you may use your brushes again.

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“Parian Spirit Professional Brush Cleaner is the go-to for top makeup artists and cosmetic brands because it does an overhaul on your brushes while conditioning the brush hair. It rids the brushes from oil, dirt and colors left by cosmetics. It is made with Florida oranges so it smells good on your next brush stroke.” -Sydney Go (COO, Nippon Esthetic Solutions).

Another wonderful discovery is this organic and eco-friendly water activated solid brush cleaner made at home by celebrity makeup artist, Xeng Zulueta. It is made from coconut and lavender extracts. “What’s great about this organic cleaner is that makeup brushes become safe for sensitive skin”, Xeng mentions. This is the more affordable and safer alternative from other high-end brands out in the market. One tub of 80 grams only costs P150.   I love this product because you can really see how much dirt and makeup are easily removed. It’s like giving them a bath with a bar of soap.

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So now you’ve already washed your brushes. They’re wet and damp. What do you do next? For the longest time I would lay my brushes on a towel and let them dry overnight. But I noticed that the center of my brushes would still be damp in the morning. I also tried drying them upright and placing them in a pencil holder, but the bristles would end up drying in different directions. Until Xeng introduced the Makeup Junkie Drying Brush Stand to me!

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“This awesome brush stand allows your brushes to dry upside down. You need to air all sides of the brush to ensure no moisture has trickled down the stem. Moisture causes bristles to break and bacteria to grow. Upside down drying preserves your makeup brushes. Flip it upside down and it becomes an instant makeup brush organizer and stand.” – Xeng Zulueta (@xengzulueta on IG and Twitter)

To be honest, washing my brushes became such a chore. But these products have made cleaning my brushes fun again! Seeing all the dirt come out of your brushes at the end of the day and seeing them organized in a cute stand makes me look forward to “cleaning time”.

For inquiries, you may email bellecat.studio@gmail.com 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Au Naturel

28 Aug

Discover the nourishing traditions of our country with locally made organic beauty products.

            I have always been a big fan of products that were lovingly made at home. Whenever I would visit weekend markets, I’m always drawn to goods that are all natural, unique and locally made. Although, I admit I still enjoy shopping in department stores for beauty products. But I will always have a special place in my heart for homemade and local discoveries.

           One of my favorite all-natural beauty products is called The Heart Shrine Oils. I discovered this at The Yogi Fair. This body oil is based on premium organic virgin coconut oil, infused with camia, sampaguita and ylang ylang. The creator, Chaya Go, says that all ingredients are sourced locally and every bottle is mixed by hand and in small batches at home. “It really is a kind of cottage industry. We do not rush to create large batches but instead we take time to create things by hand, allowing the flowers to steep in the oils. It’s a slow craft and to make the oils in itself a therapeutic practice,” shares Chaya who is also a yoga teacher. The Heart Shrine Oils are best enjoyed as an after-bath moisturizer. I also use it on my face every night and my hair to keep it shiny and less frizzy. I noticed my skin glowed every morning and my breakouts lessened noticeably. (www.facebook.com/theheartshrineoils)

          Another local brand I was so glad to discover is called “Simoy ng Haraya”, which means whiff of imagination. Lala De Leon, the owner of Simoy ng Haraya, was looking for something to focus on outside her stressful job. She was fascinated with natural ingredients and essential oils and this pushed her to study aromatherapy. In fact, she is currently working on her clinical aromatherapist certification. Simoy specializes in perfumes, soaps, reed diffusers, yoga mat sprays and balms. She uses local ingredients such as sugarcane alcohol, citronella and lemongrass in some of her products. However, Lala says, it’s inevitable to get some ingredients from other countries. I also love how she named her products using Filipino terms like “Alaala”, “Unang Halik” and “Tiwala”. My favorite Simoy ng Haraya product is their 4-in-1 nail care fix that’s made for dry, brittle and discolored nails. It’s a strengthener, whitener, conditioner and anti-fungal oil with vitamin E, lemon, tea tree, lavender and rosemary essential oils. It really does strengthen my weak nails. (www.facebook.com/simoyngharaya)

          My love for homemade products is probably because of the influence of my childhood friend, Isabel De Dios, the creator of Sparrow Fresh, a new line of skin care products that are chemical and preservative-free. These are only available upon order to ensure freshness. She wanted to shift to a more organic lifestyle. She would make body scrubs and moisturizing massage salves at home and I would gladly try them.   “They are skin food sans the carbs”, Isabel says. She uses ground organic rice, sea kelp, wasabi powder and sesame oil to use as an exfoliant, which she calls her sushi body scrubs. Her creamy cocoa massage salve is made with natural beeswax, cocoa butter and olive oil, which may be used as a body moisturizer or for massage.   I use her sushi body scrubs twice a week on my face and body and I noticed a smoother and brighter complexion after every use. (Instagram: @sparrowph, sparrow.fragrances@gmail.com)

          It is just so amazing what wonderful things you can make from a simple flower or plant. And I will never forget what Chaya told me, “Our islands have long held healing and nourishing traditions using what the flowers, fruits and trees provide us. It seems but natural to love once again what is abundant all around us.”

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1. Simoy ng Haraya 4-in-1 Nail Care 2. Sparrow Fresh Body Scrubs 3. Simoy ng Haraya Foaming Hand Wash 4. Heart Shrine Body Oil 5. Simoy ng Haraya Ginhawa Natural Foot Mist

Photography by: Nico Nuyda

Soak Up The Sun

2 Jun

 

HAVE YOU BEEN DYING FROM THE HEAT LATELY?!  Have you stepped outside for a few seconds and felt sweat beads dripping down your face. And you say to yourself, “There goes my makeup”.

Not to worry. It doesn’t mean you have to leave the house with just sunblock on your face. Here are some tips to keep your makeup sweat and heat proof.

First, make sure your cleansing products are oil-free. Use a toner to take away excess oil. Applying a clay mask also once a week will help remove excess oil.

Summer is the perfect time to say, “Less is more.” You may avoid using liquid foundation and concealer if possible. But if you’re like me, who absolutely cannot leave the house without makeup, I suggest you use a foundation primer. Believe me, you won’t regret adding primer in your daily makeup routine. This will keep the foundation from slipping. Apply concealer only in the problem areas and set with either loose powder or powder foundation making sure not to over apply.

You may also use an eye primer to keep your eyeshadow in place. The key word for summer is “waterproof” especially in looking for your mascara and eyeliners. (Recommended product: Eye of Horus Mascara and Eyeliners).

Eye of Horus Eyeliner

This eye pencil is 100 percent waterproof and glides on without tearing.

Eye of Horus Mascara

The Eye of Horus Mascara has a natural-based formula that won’t run or smudge.

Please do not neglect your lips. Always apply lip balm preferably the one that has a base of beeswax or petroleum jelly. And finally, a makeup setting spray will be great to have. It’s like hairspray for the face and will keep your face looking fresh all day. (Recommended product: Skindinavia Makeup Finishing Spray http://www.skindinavia.com).

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Don’t let the heat stop you from wearing your favorite makeup products this summer 🙂

*Photos courtesy of Eye of Horus Philippines and Skindinavia Philippines’ Facebook pages.

Mycel

10 Apr

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My very first bride for the year 2014, Mycel 🙂

How gorgeous are these flowers?!

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Choices, choices 🙂  The sketch at the back was drawn by the bride herself.  Awesome 🙂

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My work station for the day 🙂

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Hairstyling by one of my favorite hairstylists ever.  RJ Dela Cruz, my sissy 🙂

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Hair and makeup, check!

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The mother of the bride is glowing, too 🙂

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Stunning and glowing bride, Mycel 🙂 #nofilter.  Hehe 🙂

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Mycel’s bouquet 🙂

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Almost ready…

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Mycel, opening a gift from her fiance 🙂  How sweet! 🙂

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Big hugs to my super beautiful bride, Mycel! 🙂

Thank you for the opportunity to be part of your big day! 🙂

Hope all is well with you guys! 🙂

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Style Weekend: Year of the Horse

2 Apr

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Here are some behind-the-scenes photos of one of my favorite cover shoots for the year so far! 🙂

These photos were shot in a beautiful house in Makiling.

Styling by the one and only, Liza Ilarde 🙂  Thank you for making me part of this shoot!

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Our beautiful and flawless model, Karen Pamintuan 🙂

Makeup by yours truly using Shu Uemura 🙂

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Hairstyling by the very talented, Helen Egan for L’oreal Professionel 🙂

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How cute are these ponies?!?!  But they’re very naughty! Haha!

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Our photographer was none other than Shaira Luna 🙂  She’s so awesome.  And I love her OOTD 🙂

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It was a beautiful and windy day…  I can imagine myself living here… Seriously.  Haha!

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It’s Liza and Lisa 🙂

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So far the Year of the Horse has been good to me 🙂

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How’s your year so far? 🙂

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Therese

25 Oct

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It was a beautiful morning in July.  Look at this breathtaking view from one of the rooms in Taal Vista, Tagaytay! 🙂

It was Therese’s BIG day! 🙂  Here are some photos I took during this lovely Friday morning 🙂

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Love the shoes! 🙂

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Check out Therese’ gorgeous engagement ring!!!

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And here comes the bride… Therese 🙂

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Therese with her Maid of Honor.

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Thank God for friends who will help you get dressed on your wedding day! 🙂

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Stunning Therese!!! 🙂

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RJ, fab hairstylist, helping Therese with her veil 🙂

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Me and Therese before she says, I do! 🙂

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Team Belle & Cat, my talented girls, Nerissa and Honeyca with the fab, RJ Dela Cruz and Helen Egan! 🙂  Love my team! 🙂

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It was a perfect day in Tagaytay…

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With a perfect bride, Therese 🙂

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My warmest thanks, Mr. and Mrs. Wigforss, for making me part of this memorable day! 🙂  Hope all is well with both of you on the other side of the world!  Hope to see you both again soon with a little one, perhaps?! Hihi… 🙂