Vanity Trove February 2013 Box

Filed Under (bodycare, cosmetics, haircare, lotions, mask, moisturiser, primer, serum, shampoo, skincare) by rinnah on 04-03-2013

Beauty boxes have been around for some time now, but the trend only touched our shores as recently as last year. Vanity Trove has been operating in Singapore and just started with their inaugural Malaysia box last month.

Naturally, I wanted to see what was in the box. ;)

First off, I really like the packaging – the sturdy box with a slide out drawer makes it easy for me to reuse it to house my ever growing cosmetic stash. I reckon I’m going to stack it up in multiples of three to make my own ‘chest of drawers’.

vanity trove february

Here’s what you would have gotten if you subscribed for the February box :

  • Wella SP Colour Save Shampoo and Mask
  • Oriks Wild Ginseng Stemcell Twister Essence
  • Oriks BB Cream
  • Benefit POREfessional
  • B.liv Off With Those Heads Blackheads Sebum Gel
  • Di Palomo Tuscan Rose Hand & Body Lotion

Seven different products, of which 3 were handy travel sizes and the other 4 were sample sizes. I’ve always held that beauty boxes are a good way to test out which products are new to you without having to commit to a full size. This concept works for me because of my finicky skin, but it’s also a double-edged sword cos I never know if the products would be suitable for me. In any case, I do like getting a surprise every month and usually spread the product love to my family and friends. (For this month’s Vanity Trove, my mom snapped up the Di Paloma hand lotion, simply because it smelled so lovely. *wink*) As for me, I’m most interested in trying out B.liv’s blackhead sebum gel because of my unending war on blackheads – why don’t they ever go away?

If you’re interested in signing up for your own Vanity Trove, just check out their website.

VT get started card 2 R1-01

Note : The product/service in this post was provided for consideration by the brand itself or a PR firm. This does not affect my review in any way and do refer to my disclosure policy for further details.

Empties for the month of August 2012

Filed Under (bodycare, haircare, shampoo) by rinnah on 31-08-2012

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Thank God it’s Friday again! :)

Even as you read this post, I’m celebrating the National Day of Malaysia with a whole lot of makan events with family and friends – I have breakfast, brunch and dinner appointments all lined up today!

Onwards to the post. I lamented previously that I had an empty problem where I never seemed to be able to finish any of my beauty products due to a rather fickle habit of moving on to new products without finishing the old opened one. Encouraged egged on by Domncroxd, I put my mind to the task and managed to finish two products this month. Go me! :P

Head & Shoulders Anti-Dandruff shampoo

First up is my old faithful standby Head & Shoulders anti-dandruff shampoo. I am slightly ashamed to say that I brought this with me to Singapore 17 months ago but only managed to finish it this month after having abandoned it for other, flashier and newer shampoos. I used to reserve it for use only after workouts or particularly sweaty days as I love the cooling menthol feel on my scalp. This does help in controlling the flakies somewhat when I had eczema breakouts and is also awesome for stripping away the oilies. Sometimes a bit too good at stripping though so I pair it with a soft conditioner (currently using Pantene Aqua Light range).

Lactacyd Intimate Feminine Hygiene Wash

The other empty for the month is a feminine hygiene wash product, Lactacyd. Rather self explanatory, this one. I can only say that I bought a bottle in Singapore and it had a thicker liquid texture but the bottle bought in Malaysia had a watery and runny texture. Both bottles stated that they were manufactured in the same place though. I’m still not sure which one is the faulty bottle, but I didn’t like the watery one. It felt like it wasn’t really cleansing anything. I’ll repurchase again in Singapore to see if it’s like the initial bottle I used.

And that’s it for my August empties. Hopefully *fingers crossed* I’ll finish something in September that I can write about. Hahah.

Fabulous Finds August 2012 Box

Filed Under (bodycare, cosmetics, fragrances, haircare, lotions, mascara, mask, mask, serum, shampoo, skincare) by rinnah on 29-08-2012

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Remember my previous post on the launch of Fabulous Finds in Malaysia? Well, another month has rolled around (so quickly!) and it’s time to peek into the August 2012 box.

Fabulous Finds logo

This time around, the melon pink box was couriered to my doorstep and just in time too, arriving before the Hari Raya holidays were in full swing. As the theme of the month went, I was looking forward to saying hello to “Fabulous New Discoveries”.

Fabulous Finds August product list

Here’s a list of what you can expect inside your beauty box – I particularly like how clearly Fabulous Finds lists the usual price of each product. To borrow Domncroxd of Belle Demoiselle’s term, it’s like a menu, only in this case not of food but of beauty products.

Fabulous Finds August box

For the month of August, Fabulous Finds outdid their July box:

  • Empro Brown & Black Mascara (full sized)
  • Jurlique Balancing Day Care Cream
  • Lanvin Femme Couture
  • My Beauty Diary Facial Sheet Mask (one piece)
  • Olive Hand Moisturising Cream
  • Skinz Infinite Youth Recall Serum (full sized)
  • Wella SP Repair Shampoo and Mask

Colour me impressed! That’s seven different items to test drive (eight if you count the Wella shampoo and mask separately) and two of them are full sized products. There’s also a MYR 10 cash voucher for Beaubelle products and a 50% discount voucher for a Jurlique facial treatment. When you consider the fact that subscription to Fabulous Finds is only MYR 35 a month and includes courier delivery to your doorstep, that, my lovelies, is a real bargain! :D

There were not so many well known, higher end brands in the August box as compared to the July box, but still these are brands that people should have seen before and are easily found in Malaysia. Maybe the next step might be to expose Malaysian beauty lovers to overseas niche brands? I’m looking forward to finding out in the coming months.

For more details or to subscribe for the September box, visit Fabulous Finds’ website here.

Note : The product/service in this post was provided for consideration by the brand itself or a PR firm. This does not affect my review in any way and do refer to my disclosure policy for further details.

Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous Shampoo and Conditioner

Filed Under (conditioner, haircare, shampoo) by rinnah on 27-02-2012

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I first got to know about the shampoo and conditioner from Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous range in the November edition of my Bellabox subscription.

“To protect and nourish long and damaged hair, the luxe Italian hair masters at Davines have created a hair strengthening formula. To protect hair from breakage, Davines shampoo has active ingredients including spinach extract, rich in vitamin A and C, with antioxidant properties that make your hair stronger. The anti-breakage, lustrous conditioner helps smooth and condition long or damaged hair. An apricot butter formula, rich in vitamin A and C, adds shine and moisture to the hair. It also protects hair from damage caused by styling and heat.”

Davines MELU Shampoo

I have never loved the fragrance of a shampoo as much as I love the Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous shampoo. The texture of the shampoo is more liquidy compared to say, regular drugstore brands. It feels soft and light on the hands and on your hair and washing my hair has never been such a pleasure before! I found that the shampoo leaves my hair soft and manageable with little or no need for any additional conditioner. My hair feels light and bouncy after washing but sadly, it doesn’t have the lovely shine and luster I get with my L’Oreal Nutri Gloss Light shampoo. Haven’t seen any improvement in the hair fall area though, because my hair still falling like there’s no tomorrow.

While I absolutely loved the shampoo from Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous range, I can’t say the same for the conditioner.

Davines MELU Conditioner

The scent of the conditioner is not the same as the shampoo. It smells heavy and cloyingly sweet compared to the light and sweet fragrance of the shampoo. The texture of the conditioner feels more like a mask and it made my hair feel weighed down and I noticed that the oil build-up was extremely fast – I would feel oily within 12 to 16 hours. To make it sorta work for me, I found that I had to use very little amounts (think pea-sized), make sure I don’t apply it even halfway up my hair, just at the very ends and rinse extremely thoroughly. As in, when you think you’re done, go back and rinse again!

I reckon I would repurchase the shampoo based on the fragrance alone but I definitely won’t be repurchasing the conditioner once I’m done with the tub I received.

Note : It may be cheaper to get Davines haircare from Strawberrynet depending on your currency exchange rate.

Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous Shampoo
Description : Shampoo ideal for long hair prone to breakage.
Instructions : Gently massage throughout wet hair. Rinse. Repeat if necessary.
Packaging : 250ml
Recommended retail price : SGD 28.00

Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous Conditioner
Description : Conditioner ideal for long hair prone to breakage.
Instructions : Apply evenly to damp hair throughout the lengths. Leave for 2 – 3 minutes then comb through, rinse thoroughly.
Packaging : 250ml
Recommended retail price : SGD 29.00

Bellabox November 2011

Filed Under (branding, conditioner, cosmetics, haircare, serum, shampoo, skincare) by rinnah on 30-11-2011

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I was uber excited at first to know that Singapore was getting a local version of the sample box trend that’s all the rage in US, UK and Australia.

Bellabox delivers the latest deluxe beauty products to your door, brand new and exclusive for you at SGD 15.00 a month. We handpick and deliver 5 of the most luxurious beauty products to hit the market. Discover new products you will love, and make new purchases with confidence.

I signed up for Bellabox about 3 months back during the preview before their official launching, but only received my first Bellabox this month after a long saga (I had multiple issues with ordering and the online payment via PayPal that resulted in my missing the cut-off date for the first edition Bellabox in October). I was pretty frustrated with the technical problems that put me on the sidelines watching other bloggers and Singapore beauty lovers tweet/blog/write about what they got last month so I guess my expectations were rather dampened by the time the November Bellabox arrived.

Nevertheless, there is always a thrill in receiving a package and opening presents. :)

Bellabox outer packaging

Your Bellabox experience starts when your pink Bellabox is delivered to the doorstep via Singapore registered post.

Bellabox within a box

Inside the pink Bellabox packaging sits another, smaller glossy box containing the sample products for the month, all nestled in confetti packaging. These products are custom selected for you based on the profile you fill up when you first register for the service.

What's in the November Bellabox

Here’s what I received in November’s Bellabox:

1. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Trollop
2. Duchess Marden Damascena Anti-Wrinkle Serum
3. Korres Guava Body Butter
4. Skin Factory Eye Dream Honey Patch
5. Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous Shampoo
6. Davines Melu Mellow Anti-Breakage Lustrous Conditioner

Of all the products, I’d say that OCC’s Lip Tar and the Davines shampoo/conditioner set seem most value for money. After all, considering that 1 tube of Lip Tar normally retails at SGD 18.90, you’ve already gotten back the price of your monthly subscription. I was a mite disappointed with the size of Korres’ body butter sample sachet though – just one sachet seems rather miserly to me. Surely they could have coughed up another sachet which would allow users to better decide whether or not it works for them in more than just one or two uses.

All in, the jury is still out as I’m rather ambivalent about Bellabox at this point of time and will wait to see what’s in next month’s Bellabox before making any judgement calls.

Read other blogger reviews here :
Beetrice – October Bellabox and November Bellabox

Style Aromatherapy Pro Hair Care Natural Anti-Aging Shampoo

Filed Under (haircare, shampoo) by rinnah on 19-10-2011

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I was first attracted to this shampoo because of the cute small bottle that reminded me of teeny wine bottles (but in plastic form). It claims to be Then I saw the label that says “Made in Israel” and got intrigued enough to buy it to try.

Pro HairCare Style Aromatherapy shampoo

Having used Style Aromatherapy Pro Hair Care Natural Anti-Aging Shampoo for about a month now, I think I’ve established my thoughts enough to blog about it.

First off, I like the bottle design as a change from the usual shampoo bottle. Buying the travel sized version of this shampoo also means that it fits nicely in my hand and the flip-top cover lets me use it one-handed. I’m not sure how bulky the regular sized bottles may be, seeing that they’re also flip-top caps and not pump versions.

The scent of this shampoo is also nice although I can’t describe it. It doesn’t irritate my sinuses either, so that’s a plus point in its favor. It doesn’t lather up excessively, but enough to get the job done.

Now comes the part where I’m rather on the fence with this shampoo.

I find that it does a good job of cleaning my hair when it felt greasy and not overly drying, but it also left my hair rather static. What I mean by static is when you run your fingers through your hair, it doesn’t feel smooth and your fingers seem to meet friction even though there are no tangles? While it doesn’t leave any product behind to weigh down my hair like some other shampoos I’ve used, my hair also didn’t feel as soft nor did it have shine. For a shampoo that’s supposed to be formulated for normal to dry hair, I found that it didn’t have enough moisturizing effect for me.

I figure I’ll alternate using this shampoo with my other, regular shampoos until I finish up the bottle. Waste not, want not! :P

Would I repurchase? Probably not.

Yes factors : Cleans oil and grease very well, nice fragrance
No factors : Does not provide enough moisture to hair ends, hair felt ‘static’ after use

Read other blogger reviews here :
Ling Tung

Category : Intensive repair for normal to dry hair with Dead Sea minerals, enriched with borage seed oil and burdock extract.

Description : Style Aromatherapy Shampoo with innovative “natural anti aging” technology nourishes and moisturizers your hair while leaving it feeling light and refreshed. Enriched with borage seed oil the shampoo is a natural anti aging source for your hair and scalp. The aromatherapeutic properties of burdock extract and Dead Sea minerals impart intensive nourishment to the hair resulting in increased softness and suppleness.

Directions : Apply a generous amount of shampoo to wet hair and work into a lather. Rinse well. Repeat if necessary. Suitable for daily use.

Packaging : 100ml (comes in 400ml version as well)

Recommended retail price : SGD 2.90 for 100ml

Pantene Recharging Fluid Pro-V Formula

Filed Under (conditioner, events, haircare, mask, shampoo, treatment) by rinnah on 14-10-2010

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Where’s a solution to your hair woes when you need one?

I’d been experiencing some unusual hair fall of late, where if I ran my fingers through my hair I’d come away with a few strands in my hand. Washing my hair meant losing dozens of strands of hair and none of my usual shampoos were working to stem this problem. Honestly, I was getting rather worried about this situation. Not that I don’t have hair to spare – my hair is deceptive, as any of my hair stylists (past and present) will tell you. It looks rather fine and no more than a handful, but when they start to style/cut my hair, it will seem never-ending! Hahah.

Cupcakes @ Pantene blogger tea party

Then I got invited to the Pantene blogger engagement event at Hair Atelier in Jaya One. And I will honestly say that I didn’t set any expectations overall before going. You see, I don’t have a firm opinion where Pantene products were concerned even though I’ve used variants of the shampoo/conditioner ever since I was a little girl. You could practically say I grew up in a house that was never without a bottle of Pantene shampoo/conditioner (different types) in the bathroom. And you know what they say – that you don’t fully realize the pros and cons of something just because you are so used to having it in your life. Heh.

Pantene Pro-V range

I did hope that my poor, neglected tresses would get some TLC though. I’d say that the team was pretty confident that their product works because we were treated to a hair pampering session using nothing but the new Pantene Recharging Fluid Pro-V formulated products (after this referred to as Pantene Pro-V Total Care) – the Total Care shampoo, conditioner and the 3 minute miracle treatment.

The new Pantene Pro-V Total Care smells deliciously like honeydew, a rare departure from the rest of the fruity/floral shampoo brigade. Unlike dear Kahani, I kinda liked the fragrance and couldn’t help but sniff at my hair whenever I thought no one was watching.

After the wash and treatment, the stylists brought out their hairdryers to blow dry and style my hair and I thought “Oh no, my hair will be fried!” Luckily, I was wrong. The treatment had made my hair soft and silky straight, so much so one of the stylists asked if I had straightened my hair. LOL. And the end result of all that hair pampering?

Pantene makeover

My hair felt amazingly soft and light after and still looked great for the following week. Even better yet, the soft and light feel remained even though I’d been using other shampoos and conditioners and reminded me of far more pricier hair treatments I’d done previously. Even my scalp felt cleaner, since my hair did not get oily as quickly as it normally would. And while my hair did not miraculously stop falling, any subsequent hair fall that week was significantly reduced by as much as 70%. That was pretty amazing for me, I can tell ya.

Will I continue to use the Pantene Pro-V Total Care products? Yup, I definitely would as long as the products continue to work well for me.

You can pick up Pantene Pro-V products at the following recommended retail prices : Shampoo/conditioner @ MYR 9.30 (180ml) or MYR 14.90 (350ml); Intensive Treatment (in a jar) @ MYR 14.90 (135ml) or MYR 19.30 (300ml); Night Miracle serum @ MYR 17.90 (90ml) and Treatment 3-minute Miracle @ MYR 17.85 (3 tubes x 15ml).

Read other blogger reviews here :
Ee Von – the product and the party
Kahani – the product and the party
Pretty Beautiful

L’Oreal Nutri-Gloss Light Shampoo

Filed Under (haircare, shampoo) by rinnah on 18-06-2010

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l'oreal elseve nutri-gloss light shampoo

Description : Does your long, fine hair turn greasy quickly: become dull and flat – losing its shine and energy? To revive your hair’s shine, L’Oréal has created Nutri-Gloss Light shampoo with Pearl Protein+ Citrus. It helps free the hair fibres of deposits and removes impurities. After shampooing, hair feels beautifully cleansed, looks healthy and is light to the touch. Nourished and smoothed, the surface of the hair captures and better reflects the light for a mirror shine, cashmere touch… weightless feel!

Packaging : 200ml or 400ml

Recommended Retail Price : MYR 12.90 or MYR 22.90

My review :

I seem to have been ‘infected’ by the SoLoverly gals what with my new found interest in shampoos, conditioners and hair masks. It must be the way they keep on talking about ‘happy, bouncy, shiny hair’. Whatever it is they’re using, I want that happy shiny hair too!

Anyways, my previous shampoo of choice (which is still in my growing shampoo arsenal) was Kerastase Dermo-Calm for sensitive scalps as recommended by my former stylist and I liked it well enough to use it on its own (little or no conditioner needed because it leaves my hair reasonably soft and tangle-free). As I’ve also found out by much trial and error, my scalp demands that I alternate my shampoo/conditioner combinations every few days or else it rebels like a teenager – in extremes of either dandruff that’s so bad you’d think it was snowing, or a sudden over-production of oil that leaves me looking like something the cat dragged in.

As luck would have it, I was going through an oily scalp phase where I’d wash my hair daily but still feel rather oily-ish by the end of the day. I was also dropping hair by the hand/strand-ful! Each time I ran my fingers through my hair I’d be sure to come away with a strand or two in between my fingers which is not something that happens often to me. My Kerastase Dermo-Calm held the fort capably when I had dry hair and mild dandruff, but it was no match against the oilies. I needed something stronger and clarifying (a term I learned from reading Kahani’s posts).

Since Kahani touted the clarifying properties of L’Oreal Nutri-Gloss Light Shampoo (hereinafter referred to as NG Light shampoo) as being able to strip away the grease yet gentle enough for everyday use, I grabbed me a bottle when I saw it on offer in Giant Hypermarket – retailing for MYR 9.99 (200ml) on offer. Reading beauty blogs are both good and bad for you, no?

Anyway, the million dollar question here is “Does NG Light shampoo do everything it promises to deliver?”

I’d say “Yes it does!”.

Firstly, they weren’t kidding when they say it really cleans. This is the first shampoo I’ve used that cleans so well, you practically feel as though every strand of your hair is squeaky clean after and I achieved this feel without having to go a second round as I would normally do with any other shampoo to cleanse. It also adds a little bit of noticeable volume to my hair even though I don’t blow dry my hair because my roots are no longer weighed down and greasy. Nice!

I’m not sure how the matching conditioner works with this shampoo, but when paired up with my new favorite Clairol Herbal Essences Hello Hydration conditioner, this combination leaves me with clean yet soft and tangle-free hair. And there’s one more thing that I haven’t mentioned yet. Shine! Yes, this shampoo gives me shiny hair and brings out the color of my previously done highlights in a way that even my L’Oreal Elseve Color shampoo didn’t. But that’s not the end of my raves yet. When I matched using NG Light shampoo with the hair mask from the same Nutri-Gloss range (again, thanks to the persuasive powers of Kahani’s reviews), I achieved close to 90% salon-like hair WITHOUT blow-drying! Just wash, mask, comb and air dry, which is my normal haircare routine anyway.

Yep, I am so converted to using the L’Oreal Nutri-Gloss range now. That’s the good stuff. Now, on to some not so good stuff.

I’m not one of those females who’s into scented stuff so the smell of this shampoo took some getting used to. This shampoo has a light and citrusy scent that should please citrus lovers well enough but got me wondering what it reminded me of until one day while rinsing off my hair in the shower I realized it smells like Sugus or Fruitella (a chewy, sticky sweet). That made me have second thoughts about the smell but for the sake of gorgeous locks, I shall persevere and er, try not to think about it too much. Heh. Do take a moment to check out the smell of the shampoo if scents bug you.

I also found that my hair did not take kindly to me using this shampoo everyday as I noticed my hair heading towards dry territory until I started using it exclusively with the Nutri-Gloss hair mask, which balances the shampoo to perfection. Double shampooing is a no-no for me too. So, I prefer not to use this daily despite the “light” claims and need to alternate it with my Kerastase DermoCalm every 2 – 3 days or so.

Since I’ve found the perfect balance of products to use to keep my hair happy and gorgeous, you can bet I won’t be straying from this for a long, long time. (Or at least until my scalp/hair rebels again.)

Yes factors : Cleans the oilies really well, shine intensifying properties
No factors : Can be a tad drying for daily use (depends on individual user), smell takes some getting used to

Read other blogger reviews here :
Kahani & Syen
Kahani (hair mask from the same range)
Paris B

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