Thursday, January 28, 2010

Clinique: Redeeming Youth Surge sample.

This evening I was at Sunway Pyramid. Since I was there, I decided to redeem the Clinique's Youth Surge samples (which is supposed to come in 7ml size containers).

However, apparently the outlet ran out of stock. Fine.

So, the SA gave me one 1.5ml sachets. (I had to ask before she would give me another one.)

*SURPRISE. SURPRISE.* Guess what the SA did next?

She actually rang it up online on the computer, and keyed into the system that I had "redeemed" the sample. You know, the "tag-and-redeem" system?

It would have been almost funny, but I found it seriously ridiculous that the SA is keying my name in for that the tiny measly 1.5ml sachets. (She gave me one. I had to ask again before she would give me two). 

If ever any other SAs ask me in future how did the product work for me, I would have to say that it was a measly 1.5ml sample I was given...

So "1.5ml is really too little to see any results" is the answer. No, and it should not have been tagged for that. Thank You Very Much.

UPDATE later the next day at WORK...
I gave the samples to my colleague. I thought he'd make better use of it.. So my response will be...

"I dunno. I gave the sample to my colleague. Besides, I was only given a 1.5ml sample.. So I have no idea". 

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Sediakan Payung Sebelum Hujan

Taken from a malay proverb, it literally means, "prepare the umbrella before it rains". Which just means to prepare for any unfortunate incident.

I have since returned from my trip to South Korea. However, this time, I am putting my priorities straight from the beginning. For me, that would be to prepare for any incident in the future. But to do that, I will have to plan for the future. So I am preparing for the "hujan". 

It means taking control of my own circumstances. Being responsible for my own wealth accumulation.   
Sure, I do love and enjoy travelling and all. (Though the weather this winter was crazy, and sorta of deterred me from wanting to visit another country in the middle of the winter season should something similar happens in future, or visit the Singapore Safari Night Zoo, which was a total waste of money..)

Now, what am I rambling about? I am just saying to plan ahead to not do things in future which will waste money..

So to prepare for my future ahead (at least for the next three months), I have decided to stash my money away in the Term Deposit. Or Fixed Deposit, in Malaysian slang. Read here on my tips on how to save money.

For me, that works. 

No Cash = No Shopping = Save Money

So it'll be just working with whatever dough I have and budgeting from there. Having the peace of mind that I have a stash somewhere for a rainy day.

In the mean while, please do check out The Beauty Regime: Blogshop. You don't have to spend any money. Just swap with me the items we both have, and we can both save money!  It's a win-win situation!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Blogshop: Product Swap or Cash accepted.

Good evening, both readers and interested customers alike.

I have decided to accept SWAP items for the items in the blogshop.So, instead of paying cash, you may use items you have in store to exchange for the items you see.

*Please note that to make the process fair for all, items should be of similar or appropriate worth, or value.

For more information, please enquire within to: thebeautyregime at gmail dot com.

The items that I am currently interested in are:


VOUCHER TYPE
1) Movie vouchers- (redeemable to watch movie, hopefully not of the *asterisk kind) at
2) Book vouchers from MPH, Borders, AcmaMall or similar.
3) Free cake, or coffee vouchers, dining from Starbucks (not exactly my favourite, but whatever), Coffeebean, or at a proper coffee place.
4) Dining for free vouchers: Mcdonalds, KFC, Baskin Robbins, etc.

PRODUCT TYPE
1) A pair of modern looking pin-hole glasses (to help improve my astigmatism).
2) Clarins treatment oils.
3) Yves Rocher range.
4) Kiehl's body range.
5) SkinFood body range.
6) InnisFree body range.
7) TonyMoly body range.
8) Fragrances, EDTs, etc.

You may also email me details on items you feel I may be interested in. ^^

For UPDATED LIST of Product Swap wanted, please refer to this LIST.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

New Year's Giveaway: The Winners!

Okay, I am finally done with the whole Korean language test Beginners Level. Yes, and I passed! ^^
Now, I'm up to Elementary level at ICLS, and believe it.. it is getting harder and harder. To think, all the verbs and tenses and grammar we had to absorb in!! >.<

So I finally have the peace and time to write this entry.. *dum dum dum*


The WINNERS are:
Mary Chia- FREE Detox Weight Programme or Pampering Facial (worth up to RM250) -
Winner: MizSVinz. leve_17 at yahoo.com

Adonis Wellness - FREE Eye Treatment worth RM80 -
Winner: Alyette. alyette.t@gmail.com.

Mayfair- FREE NL909 Ion Static Therapy (worth RM300)
Winner: jscheong21@hotmail.com Stylish One- jscheong21 at hotmail.com

128 Faubourg- FREE Refirming Neck and Decollete Treatment worth RM70.
Winner: TS xiu1999 at yahoo.com

Okay girls, please email me your full name & mailing address to thebeautyregime at gmail.com so the vouchers can be delivered. ENJOY! ^^

Friday, January 22, 2010

Michelle Phan: Newest Youtube Makeup Guru



Heard of her yet? A Vietnamese American, she is a makeup artist most notable for producing beauty tutorials on YouTube and owner of makeup line IQQU.

She is currently hired by Lancome.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Letting Off My Stuff.

Seeing that my room is full of "treasures" and how my domestic help cries in horror each weekend as I bring back some skincare circular from the departmental store... well!

My room is beginning to very much look like a store-room..!

Am not sure what I will be getting rid off, but among them are products from
  • Beauty Cottage (rubber masks, serums) 
  • Loccitane (body & hand series)
  • Hwangto Yellow Earth & Gold Mask
  • Lancome (Reviving Petals)
  • The Face Shop (Sleeping Mask)
  • Missha (face series)
  • Origins. (face series)
  • mask brushes
Other product range may include:
  • Etude House (Mask Sheets sold individually)
  • Laneige (Mask Sheets sold individually) 
As for how I'd sell it....
 
Payment Terms: COD/ Maybank
Delivery Terms: COD/Pickup in Tmn Desa, or near Mid Valley for now. Furthest maybe Petaling Jaya, when I go on my rounds.As for delivery by post, still learning how to go about it. So for convenience sake, it will have to be Maybank/COD/ Pickup


PRICES: Are Final & Not Negotiable. Thanks, but I don't do the China-Apek thing. You want to do that, go to the pasar malam.You want bargain price, I oon't layan you. I don't work in pasar malam.

RESERVING ITEMS: Items are reserved upon payment made. For serious buyers only.
No such thing as I booked first, and it's mine without payment made. Nobody goes to a shop and says it's theirs till they made payment already, right? We don't do that here either.

For more information: Enquire within at "thebeautyregime at gmail dot com".

UPDATE: Just Created the Blog. Please check out The Beauty Regime: Blogshop and be a "follower" for automatic updates!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

South Korea: Laneige @ Duty-Free Incheon Airport.

INCHEON AIRPORT @ 16th January 2010
This is my final shopping haul. I was going around looking for skincare products, and since I could not decide what to get, I just grabbed two products off the shelf, as time was short!

At the AK Duty-Free shop (near Gate 15) I visited, there were a number of SAs manning the place. The prices were given in American Dollars, and then converted to Korean Won. The SA manning the Laneige booth spoke mostly Korean, but the SA manning the Etude House booth was a foreigner - chinese who asked me if I spoke Mandarin.

So, you can guess that at most touristy places, there is always a staff who is bilingual. It just makes economic sense.
INCHEON AIRPORT HAUL
* Water Bank Cream Ex 2 (25,000won)
* Hydra Solution Mask (Box of 8)
[Pictures Later!]

SKINCARE PURCHASE RATIONALE
From what I had observed, the Laneige Hydra Solution masks (8 sheets per box) retails for less than  Skin Food's Gold Caviar Collagen mask (About 4,000won each?). Does that mean that the quality of Skin Food's mask ingredients is better?

Even The Face Shop retails about 10,000won for two Flebeaute Collagenic Sheet Masks. Both cost more than what Laneige retails their sheet masks for. From what I know, most students would only pay 1,000won for the sheet masks.

One korean acquaintance who is a student thought it was daylight robbery when she saw the price of 3,500-4,000 won for the Skin Food's Gold Caviar Collagen Mask, as we had entered the same shop together. For 4,000 won, a student can pay for two meals at the university cafeteria....

*I am thinking here that perhaps Malaysians are probably used to paying high prices for sheet masks..!*

As I didn't want to confuse my skin any further (what with the Clarins, Loccitane, Sothys and Face Shop leftover haul from 2009), I decided to only stick to one skincare range this round. It will take me many ions of months before I can actually finish using up the entire skincare range on my dressing table. No more skincare shopping for the time being.

I hope. ^^

South Korean: Laneige @ Duty-Free Dongdaemun.

DONGDAEMUN @ 15th January 2010
The next day, I decided to head over to Dongdaemun, which was about 15 mins walk from where I was boarding at Sinseol-Dong. So on a wintery cold frosty morning, I took a walk down to Dongdaemun. It was just one way straight from Seoul Backpackers, and I had to cross a few streets.

The ARITAUM shop is next to DOOTA! mall, and next to it was Skin Food, Etude House, and Innis Free.

DONGDAEMUN HAUL:



White Plus Renew Apple Zone Mask. (65,000 Won).


Hydra Solution Trial Kit, (in place of tax returns!)
samples of Strawberry Yogurt Mask,
Water Sleeping Mask (80ml)

This came in a set at the shop in Dongdaemun I went to. The Eye Mask was not for sale, so instead of getting the Day & Night Eye Cream separately, I bought it in a set, which was cheaper.  It was lucky I bought it there, as at the Incheon Airport, there was no such special deal!! Lucky Me!!

The SA in this shop in Dongdaemun spoke Mandarin. Granted, most touristy shops will be allocated bilingual or foreign staffed SAs, as it is more frequented by travellers. 

As the title of this entry suggests, this shop in Dongdaemun is supposed to be duty-free. However, for some strange reason, the SA told me that it did not apply here. How much was the tax-returns? 8,000won. So instead of returning the tax free, I believe she must have spoken to the Manager, who told her to load me with more samples instead.

She gave me two of the Hydra Solution Test Kits, which my search on the internet sourced that it costs about RM25, or about 8,000won per test kit. Umm... okay.. if that is what it says..

South Korea: Laneige @ Duty-Free Itaewon.

The year before, I brought back an entire The Face Shop haul. It was my first maiden trip to the land of kimchi-and-soju, and maiden introduction to South Korean skincare and cosmetics. Almost 12 months later, I m back again to the much colder and wintery (this time around) land of Korea.

Before deciding what to get, I made some enquiries with my Korean female friends. The most popular range echoed by most korean ladies 30s and above were under Amore Pacific's brands from Sulwhalsoo (premium korean brand), Mamonde (20s-30s) and Laneige (20s-30s).

I know that we can get most korean skincare range for less in South Korea, but my tour guide gave us a piece of advice: For the price of what I would pay in Malaysia, it will be about the same retail price of a better premium skincare range in South Korea. Confusing? No. It makes perfect sense.

Since the former first two brands are almost unheard of in Malaysia, I decided to get the brand that we all recognise- LANEIGE.

There are ARITAUM and Laneige stores all over South Korea, but there are more ARITAUM shops, which retail the entire range of Amore Pacific's brands. However, if you are specifically looking for the skincare named AMORE PACIFIC, it can only be found in the major departmental stores, and not at ARITAUM. 

ITAEWON @ 14th January 2010.

At the backpackers I was staying at, Seoul Backpackers, some of the boarders (female travellers from Hong Kong) told me there was a Duty-Free Laneige shop in Itaewon. Since I had never been to Itaewon, I decided to catch the subway there and check out the store.

There is a sign outside that writes in korean "Only For Foreigners". The store is a bit nondescript looking, so a passerby may not even notice it there. Next to the store is The North Face, which retails winter jackets, and there is also a KEB Exchange Bank a few doors away. I did go into KEB Exchange Bank to change some money later. They do accept Australian as well as Singaporean Dollars. 

In the Duty-Free Laneige store, there were a couple of assistants who spoke Cantonese. They didn't speak that much English, so it makes perfect sense why those two travellers led me to go there. You would not need to show your passport, as the fact that one does not speak the korean language shows that you are a foreigner anyways!

ITAEWON HAUL:





            Snow Secret Gift Set 2 - Combination Skin (42,000won).


Hydra Solution Mask, 
Hydra Solution Eye Cream (35,000won)
Water Sleeping Pack Ex,

Saturday, January 16, 2010

South Korea: Cosmetics Marketing

IMPORTED BRANDS EXPENSIVE

International and imported brands are always expensive. It is such the case in Malaysia. Brands like Kiehl's, Loccitane, Body Shop,Origins. etc. Even the South Korean ones.

During my time in South Korea, I did not really look at the international and imported brands there as I was only going to get the korean skincare products.

When my korean friend, Hyun-Ju who had just returned from Sydney to Seoul told me that Kiehl's was also relatively quite expensive in both Australia, and South Korea, I begin to wonder why. Imagine a 15ml Kiehl's Lip Balm for 21,000won (about RM63) !

KIEHL”S LIP BALM- EXPENSIVE!
Korean Air currently has a promotion for 25,000won for 3 x Kiehl's lip balm tubes (15ml)-- but I am not really interested in it, since we can get it for equally cheaper if not relatively fairly priced back here in Kuala Lumpur?

Kiehl's range of products may be fairly expensive in Kuala Lumpur, but perhaps it is not as high as what the South Koreans may have to pay for a similar product.

In South Korea, for example Kiehl's, Loccitane, Origins, Make Up Professional, Clinique, Lancome, SK II, Clarins, Jurlique, and the like could only be found in departmental stores like Shinsegae. Lotte, as well as Shilla.

Which will give you and idea of how high their price range there is like.

PROTECT OWN MARKET?

I think the reason why South Korea decided to have local branded skincare (which is expensive for us anyways!) is due to the fact that they do not want revenue going out of the country. You can just count the number of korean brands out there..

Sulwhasoo, 
Hera, 
Charmzone, 
Nature Republic, 
Tony Moly, 
Laneige, 
IOPE, 
Mamonde, 
Hoi, Etude House, 
Face Shop, 
Missha, 
Skin Food, 
Innis Free, 
It's Skin, 
HanSkin, 
etc, and the list continues to grow!

With such a huge variety of korean skincare range, its no wonder why the local residents may not really consider getting international brands. It is probably beyond the reach of the typical wage earner.. not to mention that perhaps the local industry is trying to protect their own market?

Nonetheless, unless you are filthy rich, you would not want to pay 21,000won for just a lip balm, when a local korean branded lip balm goes for about 3,500 to 5,500won..

If you are wondering, I gave Hyun-Ju my Kiehl's Cranberry flavored lip balm. She can show people she uses a Kiehl's lip balm now. LOL. ^^

It is definitely a good idea to study a skincare brand's origins the next time you go travelling.

Australia is definitely cheaper to get Jurlique products at most times of the year. France for Yves Rocher, the UK for Body Shop and etc....

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Premium Korean Brands.

Sulwhasoo-
Premium Korean brand. From 30s.

HERA-
Mid Premium Korean brand.

Laneige- (main ambassador Song Hye-Kyo)
Mid-premium Korean brand.
From 20s-30s.

IOPE-
Premium Korean brand.
From 30s.

Mamonde- (main ambassador- Han Ga-In)
Premium Korean brand.
From 20s-30s.

Monday, January 11, 2010

South Korea: My Travel Winter Skin Regime.

GHASTLY DRYING
Hi readers. I know I have been away for a while.

The weather here is ghastly drying on the skin. The temperature ranges from between -22degrees celcius to the warmest being 5 degrees celcius. When it is -22 degrees, it is almost impossible to be out walking on the streets.

Dangerous cold  you can call it. On those days, we stay in in the hotel, or just go out to some tea-shop and have tea and sleep there. Like I did for two days in Gwangju.

The first week in Seoul was ghastly cold and drying. The wind was equally bad.. we headed to Jeju-Do. It was much warmer there- but equally cold. Then I took a flight straight to Gwangju, which had fairly stabilized temperature.

This week, I'll be headed back to Seoul, which the weather reports as being colder in the North than in the South.

TRAVEL SKIN CARE WORKS?
I've actually brought a number of travel skincare sets from Malaysia. However on arrival in Seoul, I realised that the entire range I brought here was utterly useless for a harsh winter climate.

The only range that actually worked from the range I brought was the one from Face Shop. Even that was bought in South Korea in my trip last year... no wonder they work....

SKINCARE USED SO FAR
The items which have so far worked were:
  • The Face Shop Nutri Hand & Body Lotion (Natural Oatmeal)
  • The Face Shop Arsainte Eco-Therapy Extreme Moisture Cream (Night)
  • Etude House Collagen Moistfull Sheet Mask
  • Etude House Collagen Wrapping Sheet Mask
  • Guk-Ur-Dun-Nam-Ja (꽃을든자)Coenzyme Q10 Hand Cream (suitable for winter). Ambassador is Gu Hye Sun from Boys Before Flowers.
  • A huge number of korean sheet masks that I have bought here so far...
  • I am going to try out this Innis Free Wine Essencial Sheet Mask (1,500won) tonight.
As for Kiehl's, I have not been able to find any of their shops. I have gone around looking for their brand, but it seems to be MIA. From here, I really have to concur that their range that we source from KL is not suitable for the South Korean winter.

KOREAN BRANDS INSTEAD
Instead, there is a huge myriad of local branded brands which have yet to reach the Malaysian shores.
  • Tony Moly (main ambassador - singer & actor Kim-Hyun- from Boys over Flowers)
  • Innis Free (main ambassador- singer Im Yoona- from SNSD- Girls Generation)
  • Nature Republic (main ambassador - singer & actor Rain)
  • Aritaum (similar to SASA which stocks premium brands- IOPE, Laneige, Mamonde).
  • Yves Rocher (international brand-- so much more costly than normal korean brands)
  • IOPE (premium brand)
  • Mamonde (premium brand- main ambassador is Han Ga-In from Witch Yoo-Hee)
  • Hanskin (premium brand)
  • Skin79
  • Charmzone
  • Sulwhasoo (premium brand)
  • CastleDew (cosmetics- main ambassador- actress Ha Ji Won- from Hwangjini)
  • Tears (cosmetics- main ambassador- Kwon Sang-Woo)
The list is not exhaustive.

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year Indulgence Giveaway!


By the time this is published, I'd be away in the winter land of Korea touring.....anyways, to celebrate the New Year, I've decided to hold a Giveaway to Pavilion..

As most of my avid readers may have recalled, the management of Pavilion has been kind enough to provide me a set of beauty indulgence vouchers. However, as I currently have a facial package with a number of service providers, namely 128 Faubourg, and Bella Luna, it is almost impossible, if not bleeding my wallet dry to even think of heading to new service providers. So, I have found a creative way to make use of them...

*Dum Dum Dum*

SEVEN VOUCHERS FOR SEVENTH HEAVEN- REDEEMABLE ONLY AT PAVILION KL

All vouchers under Pavilion expire in 30 June 2010.

128 Faubourg- FREE Refirming Neck and Decollete Treatment worth RM70.

Asterspring- FREE RM100 service voucher redeemable against any facial services RM198 and above.

Slimming Sanctuary- FREE Activ 7 Sculptor Gel or Facial Kit. RM100 treatment voucher redeemable against any treatments above RM200 and above. 

Bizzy Body- FREE 1 Session of Facial Mask and 1 session of Skin Spa worth RM288.

Adonis Wellness - FREE Eye Treatment worth RM80

Mary Chia- FREE Detox Weight Programme or Pampering Facial (worth up to RM250)

Mayfair- FREE NL909 Ion Static Therapy (worth RM300)

New York Skin Solutions- FREE 1 Customised Facial Treatment 


HOW TO WIN THE VOUCHERS? 
These are the Terms & Conditions:
1) You have to be a follower of this blog

2) State which voucher you would like to try, and the reasons why you want it

3) State your email address. If your name is chosen, I will email you for your mailing details, or will just pass them to you by hand (when possible).

4) Each person may only win one voucher.

5) However, if you have a blog, and blog about this on your website, then you may have a second entry for a different service voucher. Please leave your links in the comment box.

6) The winners will be picked using a randomizer software.

7) Last Day of Entry: 16th January 2010 (23:59 hours).

I'll be back by 16th January 2010-- so start sending in your entries to win the vouchers!

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