Posts in Personal Care
How to stay summer fresh with bath and body essentials from Zenutrients

Metro Manila heaves a collective sigh of relief now that water service has resumed to all areas! Apart from the obvious sanitation issues, having no or very limited access to water was especially tortuous since we’re officially in the hot and sunny season. A daily shower is non-negotiable for us Filipinos, and it’s not uncommon for many to bathe twice a day during summer. It’s refreshing and necessary for removing all the dirt and pollution that sticks to our bodies, but have you ever wondered how it affects the health of your skin?

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Beauty Is Pain: 5 Brazilian waxing experiences for every budget

I remember a time when the thought of a Brazilian wax (or even just a bikini wax) was something of a taboo. My own mother still cringes at the thought, but those of my generation are more open about comparing notes and sharing experiences, which makes it a little less scary.

This I will tell you: yes, it is the most painful kind of waxing but it truly beats epilating (a story for another day) and shaving (which has its own slew of horror stories). A well-done wax job is fast, clean, and yields the dolphin-smooth skin that provides comfort. Horrible waxing, as you’ll find out below, may make you regret ever considering having it done in the first place.

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We Want Scrubs: The five drugstore body scrubs to stash in your shower

When I was a kid, my mom would give me a small, clean towel before my bath. “Maghilod!” she would say. My bout with scars from breakouts and skin allergies coupled with my mom’s constant reminder have made me a stickler for exfoliation. I like how it makes me feel squeaky-clean and extra fresh afterwards, plus it actually improves blood circulation in the process. My skin is still far from perfect but regular exfoliation has made my scars lighter and my skin a little less rough and dull-looking.

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This Smells Amazing: The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Body Butter

I adore the permeating scent of spiced pumpkin, vanilla, and cinnamon inside coffee shops this time of the year. I'm not into sugary coffees so I usually pass on the holiday drinks, but the smell - it's when I know that Christmas is approaching. The Body Shop has just whipped up that mouthwatering scent and put it in their pre-holiday collection called Vanilla Pumpkin, which is already out in stores now.

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Organic Beauty Week: Made by David Organics

Made by David Organics is one of the latest local beauty brands here in Manila. They are "all about providing you with carefully crafted products that are naturally healthy, generously nourishing, and sweet little pleasures to use", according to their About page. Sounds interesting right? Wait till you see the chic packaging and the price tag!

Made by David has an interesting hair range that includes shampoos and conditioners, masks, Dry Shampoo, Split End Sealer, and Hair Potion. Most (if not all) of the products are less than P300. Seriously! You can check the full product line here. I'll be trying out the Rose and Geranium shampoo and conditioner soon, as well as the Hair Potion since it promises to do wonders for curly hair. I'll let you know how they work!

For today though, I'll just be talking about the Made by David Hand Sanitiziers (P100/50ml). 

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Reader question: Should you epilate while on a laser regimen?

I just found out that this girl I've been seeing for the past few months has some issues with underarm hair. She says that she's "balbon" in the said area and the strands are fatter than common underarm hair. It had always been an issue for her since adolescence and has slowly grown into an insecurity. Because of this, her parents paid for laser hair removal sessions; she's about to go into her 4th of 15 sessions.

She says it's working fine naman daw, and she's seeing some improvement. However, session intervals are long, and are getting longer as she progresses with the program. In between these sessions, she would simply let the hair grow out, and settle for clothes with sleeves. She won't shave because she's afraid that it may darken her underarms. She only does so when absolutely needed, like when she has to attend an event where she has to wear a dress or something.

Anyway, I heard about epilators from my girl friends. I'm thinking of getting her one for her to use in between sessions. I googled about them and ran into this blog. Now, I ask, would you recommend that I buy her an epilator? Would it work on underarms? Kasi, most product reviews I read say na the product is for legs only. Also, do consider that she's getting laser sessions.

Miss Liz, and other Filipinas out there, I hope you can help me help my girlfriend. Thank you! - Thoughtful Boyfriend

Hi Throughtful Boyfriend! You are thoughtful indeed! And sweet. I like that your letter was well-written and thought out, so I thought I'd answer it on the main blog. :) 

I'm glad you asked me this question because one of the worst things your girlfriend can do is epilate while on a laser regimen. Epilating pulls out hair from the roots (well, most of it) - hair will take longer to grow out and it shouldn't damage the skin as much as a razor would. However, laser requires hair follicles to be present. Otherwise, there won't be anything to zap off permanently. Laser works best when there's some hair growth!

In other words, it's not recommended to wax or epilate while she's doing her laser.

What I'm curious about though is why it would take 15 laser sessions to remove her hair permanently. Is she doing IPL laser?

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Too Cool For School Super Cleanser TAKKOZA Cleansing Tissue

There is a dichotomy in my personality: I'm a creature of habit, yet I am always actively searching for change. My day is dictated by a strict routine since it's the only way for me to accomplish all my tasks for each account and project I'm working on. However, I also have an eye out for new hobbies, acquisitions, any sort of plans. Once I go on a new, erm, rampage I simply can't stop until I'm done with it. Sometimes something else outside of my own actions change. Whichever it is, my routine is then ruined. 

It takes me some time to recover and get back to regular programming, so I'm working v. hard to make sure my Priorities are in The Right Place. I ask myself, "Do I really need to do this right now?" Glob I'm weak. I wish I can buy focus and turn into a low-calorie drink for whenever I need it.

Anyway. I thought I'd do a quick review of something I've been sitting on for a while - the Too Cool For School Super Cleanser TAKKOZA Cleansing Tissue (P555)! This is awesome. I know I should have told you sooner but I get sidetracked so easily! So why is this awesome? It removes pretty much all types of makeup, even water-resistant mascaras (tube, film-type) with the exception of waterproof mascara. This is a water-based makeup remover after all, so I'm alright with that. I don't regularly use waterproof mascara anyway!

The smell is clean and mild while the liquid in it doesn't sting my eyes at all. I also did not get any breakouts; I feel that this cleanses my skin well. 

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Bifesta Sebum Cleansing Lotion: an awesome drugstore makeup remover

I raved about the Bioderma Crealine H20 Micellar Solution late last year, a French makeup remover that feels exactly like water. It's a great product but it's only sold in limited quantities here. Bioderma is also expensive for those who are used to drugstore makeup removers, which begs the question: what's an equally good, or (dare we hope) better alternative that's easy to find locally?

Friends, meet the Bifesta Cleansing Lotion (P419), a Japanese water-based makeup remover that's exactly like Bioderma. I believe that this brand was called Mandom before, but the whole line is now repackaged, reformulated, and renamed.

It comes in four handy variants for different skin types: Moist (dry and sensitive skin), Sebum (combination-oily), Brightup (dull and flaky), and Agecare (mature). I've been using the Bifesta Sebum Cleansing Lotion so it's the one I will review for now!

First things first: I love this stuff. This feels like you're just applying water to remove makeup. It's fairly simple to use, just squirt a full pump per cotton pad, wipe off the gunk on your face, repeat until 100% clean, and rinse. You can actually just leave your face like that and proceed to moisturizing if you wish. Bifesta cleans so well, that is can be both your facial wash and toner in one fell swoop!

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For the practical princess: Lucas Papaw Ointment

A product that's 4.5/5 after 225 reviews at Makeupalley is something to take seriously. It must be really good, or there's a misguided mass hysteria surrounding it. :P Whatever the case is, I think Lucas Papaw Ointment (P450 at Digital Traincase) deserves the raves. It's not particularly special as a lip balm but for healing wounds and minor irritations? This is awesome!

Lucas Papaw Ointment is a petroleum-based salve that is infused with papaw, or carica papaya, that is grown and hand-selected in Queensland. Papaw is touted to have healing properties when applied on stings, cuts, and burns. This was found by Dr. T.P. Lucas who then created his ointment 100 years ago - a recipe that still remains unchanged up to this day.

It's interesting to note that the company making this is still family-owned and that they only employ 12 people. They don't seem to advertise heavily (if at all). This is worth mentioning because Lucas Papaw seems to be a staple in Australia, something both women and men carry with them at all times.

But I'm rambling. The most obvious use for Lucas Papaw Ointment is as a lip balm or thick moisturizer for anywhere you need it, but due to its anti-bacterial properties, it can also help heal or offer temporary relief to:
  • Minor burns and scalds
  • Sunburn
  • Gravel rash, cuts and minor open wounds
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New Avon Naturals goodies

You're gonna love this! Avon recently released new products under the Avon Naturals line: the Shakes Body Lotions and the Antibacterial Hand Gels. In a nutshell, these new products smell AMAZING and feel so good on skin, too. 

The Avon Naturals Shakes Body Lotion (P185/150ml) is housed in what looks like a milk bottle. I really love the design as well as the print because they look so expensive and classy. Packaging aside, the lotion itself is uber creamy, non-greasy, and smells so wonderful. It feels luxe when you spread it on, but the rich cream is surprisingly easily absorbed.

My favorite is the Pomegranate & Mango variant. It smells exactly as it says it does!

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