Beauty Battle: Which of these three cleansing balms is the best?

Today’s beauty throwdown features one of my makeup removing staples – the cleansing balm! In case you’re new to the party, a cleansing balm is basically an oil-based makeup remover in solid form. It can also be used as the first step in the double cleansing routine, but the solid formula makes it more travel-friendly. You only need a pea-sized amount to remove an entire face’s worth of makeup, so even a small jar can go a long way!

So how effective are they? Let’s find out as we whip out three popular cleansing balms and test them on waterproof and long-wearing makeup.

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Swatchfest: Ellana Minerals Loose Multipurpose Pigments

Loose pigments are what I could class as ‘intermediate’ cosmetics. They’re intensely versatile, but can get pretty intimidating and require some practice to learn – which isn’t to say today isn’t the day to start trying!

Loose pigments are worth adding to your arsenal, especially if you love doing looks that require great color payoff. I personally love using loose pigments, and I’ve amassed a mini vault of Ellana Minerals Loose Multipurpose Pigments (P299 each, ellanacosmetics.com). As a professional makeup artist, having these in my kit allows me to do more creative looks but even a regular makeup junkie can benefit from adding loose mineral pigments in her collection. Want show-stopping highlights or richly-pigmented eyeshadow looks? Loose pigments are the way to go!

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Beauty News: A huge K-beauty sale, Sleek MakeUP on Lazada, and Givenchy in the PH

Happy Chinese New Year, PV girls! May this year bring you nothing but good luck and happiness. And just in case you need more reason to celebrate, this week’s roundup has got just that. We’ve got the scoop on the latest online offerings that are sure to get your red envelopes flying! From super sulit sales to another gorgeous luxury brand to swoon over, this week is a treat on its own! Happy shopping - este - reading, girls!

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Review Crew: What do 46 women think about the Cure Water Treatment Cream?

Cure is a Japanese brand that's most famous for their Natural Aqua Gel, a gentle exfoliator that's already at cult status. Many brands have tried to create something just like it, however, I find it's still the best at thoroughly exfoliating without damaging the skin! What many might now know is that there is one other product under the brand, a "secret" moisturizer that's formulated for oily to combination skin: the Cure Water Treatment Cream (P1,500).

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No boyfriend needed: 11 women on how to be single AND happy on Valentine's Day

With love songs playing everywhere and girls proudly showing off bouquets, it might easy to feel a little left out on Valentine's Day. As an “NBSB” (no boyfriend since birth), I know that I do. Still, over my twenty-odd years of flying solo, I’ve learned it’s best not to listen to those “single blues!” Instead, fill your mind with words of wisdom from these fabulously independent women who'll show you how to celebrate love even if you aren’t necessarily in love!

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Weird but (literally) hot Tokyo find: The Cinderella Time Cleansing Gel

I never fail to stalk the beauty aisles whenever I'm in Tokyo. It's, ehem, research for Project Vanity and In Her Element, okay? Last fall, I spotted an interesting development in Japan's beauty scene called "hot cleansing gels". I have never seen or heard of this concept before, but there's a whole shelf just full of them in Tokyu Hands! I chose the one that looked pretty popular (it had the Cosme #1 sticker) and didn't cost as much as the others at P1,880 yen.

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From crusty to plushy: How to deal with criminally chapped lips + top recos

Whenever people see how many lip balms and ointments I own, I get odd looks - most likely because I only have one pair of lips and can’t possibly go through all of my stash successfully. But my secret love affair with lip balms is not baseless. Not only do I buy them because they look pretty on the vanity (kidding); I have Sahara-dry all year round lips! Aside from being in an air-conditioned room almost all day every day because of work, I have a bad habit of constantly chewing on my lips, especially while I'm thinking. My lips are often chapped and flaky, so I've definitely dependent on lip balm to save them!

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Beauty Roundup: The mini palette of our summer dreams, a Parisian highlighter, and a brow sale!

Say goodbye to another work week and hello to another beauty roundup! We’ve got a lot to tackle this week - from your favorite (and iconic) foundation getting its perfect match to a Parisian highlighter that will give you that romantic glow from within, there’s a ton of amazing new bits we need to discuss. With Urban Decay’s adorable addition and lipsticks fit for a queen, get ready to write down those wish list items!

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The Queen of All Media is set to slay with Ever Bilena, and here's how

“YASSS, QUEEN!” is such a liberally used expression of admiration at this point, but there are a select few people who just own the title and can't be called anything less. It’s partly in the way they carry themselves, with unapologetic confidence and grace, and how they command the room with the sheer magnitude of their presence. You know who I’m talking about: breathing the same air as Beyonce, Gal Gadot, or RuPaul would leave me stunned and speechless. Whether you're a fan or not, it's hard not to feel the same way with Kris Aquino, who has the poise worthy of a true royal. After all, she's Queen of All Media!

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Beauty Battles: We tested these three pore-blurring primers - here's the best one!

Ah, pores, the last frontier into the metaphorical universe of porcelain skin. We often get asked how to “make pores disappear” and our answer is pretty much the same: you cannot eliminate them completely, especially through makeup alone. You can clean them to make them less visible, or get laser treatments to shrink them, but "eliminate" is too strong a word because your skin actually needs them to function properly! Apart from keeping them clear or getting professionally zapped, there are makeup primers that are specifically formulated to “refine,” “minimize,” and “blur” your pores to perfection.

I tested three products: the Ellana Blur Makeup Primer, the Happy Skin Matte About You Pore and Shine Control Primer, and the Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer to see which blurs or minimizes my pores the best.

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Advice from a 30-year old

Today I turn 30. I've never been one to put much significance on age, or even birthdays, but there's something about being alive for three full decades that calls to meaning. I don't feel old at all - gosh, am I only really 30? - but I do feel just a little more grounded and blessed with clarity. Such as it were.

My friend asked recently, "How did you know that it was going to work out?" She is thinking about starting her own business and felt unsure about how to get it off the ground. She was asking me how I knew to price In Her Element (my company's skincare brand) and why even do skincare in the first place. 

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Here are the eight sunscreen mistakes you're probably guilty of

Ultraviolet might be the color of the year but anyone interested in skincare knows that UV rays aren’t cool. When it comes to proper skin care, proper SPF is the commandment no one can break. Any PV girl worth her salt knows never to skip SPF; our editors Liz and Den would probably disown us if we ever violate this basic skin care rule!

Still, I would have to ‘fess up and admit to several things I might be neglecting when it comes to sun protection. Yes, it’s totally possible to be a skincare junkie yet still forget to cover all our SPF bases! 

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Budget Beauty: Five drugstore highlighters under P600

How did we get from being afraid of looking even the slightest bit greasy to attempting to replicate dewy skin with the clever use of makeup? I’ll tell you how: pure, shimmery magic! Highlighter has become a permanent fixture to the #FOTD in recent years, deflecting from tired eyes, subtly defining bone structure, and adding brightness to dull skin. We’ve gone the Splurge vs. Save route and even dished on the ones that we can’t live without. So it’s pretty much a no-brainer to revisit the budget picks that’ll help you shine more for a lot less!

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Beauty News: A Sephora Valentine, beauty bootcamp and special homecoming

Is it February already?! Let’s welcome the chocolate and flower-filled month with tons more love, shall we? This week’s roundup will have you excited for V-day! We’ve got the newest from KKW Beauty, Sephora Philippines’ brilliantly curated Valentine selection (forget the chocolates!), the much-awaited return of a famous balikbayan, and the Beauty Bootcamp you can't afford to miss! 

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Glitter 3 Ways: Looks for the Maria Clara, Party Girl, and Ultimate Kabogera

BYS Glitter Face and Body Kits (P599, SM Beauty) are one of those impulse buys that make so much sense at the time. Everyone wants to level up their look somehow, and what better way to do it than with shiny glitter? The thing is, it can be a little challenging to think up of ways to actually pull them off. In this post, I'm going to show you three ways to use the cosmetic glitter in the BYS Glitter Face and Body Kit in Sea Diamonds, for different comfort levels!

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Budget Beauty: Five pretty cream blushes for under P600

One of my big beauty lessons in 2017 was the importance of wearing blush. I didn't think it was crucial to my makeup routine until I realized how it instantly gives life to my face even when I'm feeling haggard. Different blush shades could also give a different feel to my monochromatic “natural” look: blue-based pinks make me look sweet and innocent, while a warm orange gives me a back-from-the-beach flush! 

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Magic Or Mayhem? We test out the Pond's Magic Powder BB

In the words of the wise men of Bowling for Soup, high school never ends. I started to believe it when my cringe-worthy high school days haunted me back in the form of the Pond's Magic Powder BB. This bottle of powder had been making rounds online as a super cheap yet effective oil-control powder so I made sure to pick up a bottle during my Bangkok trip last year. You can find this at any neighborhood 7-Eleven in Thailand but in the PH, availability is limited to online sellers.

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