Monday, 24 March 2014

Face of Australia's Liquid Eyeliner



It seems I am on this perpetual pursuit for the perfect eyeliner. I have a good collection of pencil, gel and liquid liners that I like but I've yet to find something that I absolutely adore. I blame my eyelids - one day, they'll look perfectly even and on others, one will look droopy or the other will have this triple eyelid look happening.

Yes, please feel free to pity me. AHAH.




I came across Face of Australia's Liquid Eyeliner one day when I was browsing the cosmetic section and was immediately attracted to its super fine tip. At the time, I was absolutely convinced that what my eyeliner collection needed was a liquid liner with an ultra thin tip that could help me draw precise lines. This liner swatched really nicely on the back of my hand and so I purchased it in Brown. 

 


Surprisingly, the Brown is quite dark and very pigmented. On my eyelids, it actually looks black. The tip itself is flexible and easy to work with. It also helps that the handle is long enough for you to grip it just like a pen. I'd imagine that this would be perfect for a beginner just getting into liquid eyeliners. Personally, I was able to get right onto my lashline with this on the first go! That doesn't happen everyday!

Unfortunately, as much as I wanted to like this, I just couldn't. The formula stung my eyelids really badly after I managed to make two perfect wings on my eyes and I had to remove the liner immediately. I thought it was maybe a one-off thing and so I waited a week later to try, and again it irritated my eyes so badly! It actually felt like my eyelids were burning!

A quick search online found that a small minority of people have the same problem and they've put it down to sensitive eyes. I'm assuming that, that's probably the reason for my reaction considering that I do have sensitive skin. A definite shame because I think this has all the hallmarks of a reliable eyeliner. Its inexpensive, easy to use and because the tip is so thin, you can go as thin or as heavy you like, depending on how bold you'd like your look to be.

Have you tried Face of Australia's Liquid Eyeliner? What's your favourite liquid eyeliner right now?

Saturday, 22 March 2014

The Brand New THIS IS VALENTINE .



Hi everyone! How are we all going? Hope all is well!

Has anyone noticed that my blog is looking a little different? AHAH. Perhaps, it's looking a little bit more organised? I've spent the past week trying to give my blog a new coat of paint to revive it a little.

The last time I tweaked my blog was perhaps last year when I renamed it VALENTINE the BLOG . This was because I anticipated opening an online store by the name of VALENTINE the SHOP . (no surprises there!). But last year was just one nightmare after another and I found it difficult to find time to blog, let alone open an online shop.

By the end of last year, I had thoroughly outgrown the name and the idea of an online store. The blog name also wasn't aligning itself with my other social media sites, which all carried the 'thisisvalentine' handle. I began thinking that my blog looked too basic and cluttered. I wanted something that would look and read much better. I've always been very aware of the fact that the first thing the audience judges is the attractiveness and useability of a blog template.

So allow me to introduce THIS IS VALENTINE . YAYYYYY! I purchased my template from Kendra at Swoon Creative Studio. She makes gorgeous templates, amongst other things and you should definitely check her out if you're on the hunt for a blog revampl! The template took a bit of fiddling around but fitting a new template was surprisingly easy!

I'll still be largely focusing on beauty but I want to make the move into writing about things I'm facing in my 20s - whether it be travelling, careers, relationships, friendships... because surely this world could use another commentator giving their two cents on current affairs and popular interest topics! AHAH. 

Enjoy your stay and please tell me how you like the new template!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Saint Laurent Paris Classic Large Flap Wallet in Bordeaux Leather



I've been on the lookout for a new wallet for quite awhile now but I haven't found something that really caught my eye. I have a general preference for sturdy, leather, continental wallets with ample space to put my endless collection of cards (read: store membership cards, not credit cards!). I also like understated and, really, what's more minimalistic than Saint Laurent these days?

I was initially deciding between the Classic Saint Laurent Paris Large Flap Wallet in Bordeaux Leather and the Classic Large Y Flap Wallet in Black Leather. Both are really gorgeous in person and so I always left the store undecided and empty handed! Surprisingly, everything resolved itself in the form of a surprise birthday gift! I received the Large Flap Wallet in the moody dark brown with a hint of red and I am loving it! I really like dark brown coloured accessories and I particularly adore bordeaux, a burgundy brown.

This wallet pretty much ticks all my wallet requirements! It's well-built, spacious and looks quite elegant sitting on top of tables while I eat/work/play. It even still has the brand new leather smell and I can't stop myself from sniffing it...in private, of course! Ahah!

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Saturday, 8 March 2014

Afternoon Tea at The Lounge, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong



As part of my Masters program, I took a Strategy class last semester and it was one of those eye-opening experiences. So much so that I think I've fallen in love with strategy and I most likely have found my life calling *sudden beam of light shines down from ceiling onto my head*.

Our lecturer, a consulting strategist himself, often mentioned throughout our course that the Four Seasons is the existing benchmark for hotels in terms of service delivery. I've always had an interest in hotels and hospitality thanks to dad allowing me to tag along on his business trips over the years. So to hear that the Four Seasons was creme de la creme was interesting because I've never stayed in any of their branches.

And being the curious individual that I am, I decided that I would storm Four Seasons and see if it really was what our lecturer had made it out to be! A little over two weeks ago, it was my birthday and I decided to do Afternoon Tea in the hotel's lobby lounge with family. 




The Four Seasons is discreetly tucked inside Central's IFC which houses exclusive offices and prestigious fashion stores. The Lounge is adjacent to the hotel lobby and is flooded with natural light from its floor to ceiling windows. Facing Victoria Harbour, the Lounge offers uninterrupted views that make the subtly elegant and refined surroundings even more tranquil and relaxing.

Personally, I think the IFC is a perfect location for a five star hotel. The IFC itself is a wonderful escape from Hong Kong's busy streets. The shopping experience is always much more leisurely than what usually takes place in other mega malls. This sense of tranquility is definitely carried through into The Lounge.

We were seated towards the back, away from the general public, on lounge chairs. This gave us extra privacy to chit chat (read: take lots of photos!).




Afternoon Tea at the Lounge starts at 3PM but we were running late on the day, so we arrived a little bit later. There were already diners seated but no one seemed to have their food yet. We ordered a tea set for three and several towers started coming out shortly afterward. Actually, the very first tier came to our table and, as it was coming out, a pianist at the Lounge's entrance started playing Happy Birthday! A few staff members came over to wish me Happy Birthday and helped us take photos.

I felt incredibly special. The birthdays after my 21st have been very low-key and so to do something like this was wonderful. Thank you Four Seasons Hong Kong!




I'd love to talk a little about the tea because it is something that we still go on about two weeks on. Off the menu, we ordered an Organic Chamomile Flowers, Organic Lychee Green and a Four Seasons Hong Kong Signature Blend. Each was beautifully light on the palette and an excellent way to cut through the sweetness of the set's desserts. However, special mention goes to the Organic Chamomile Flowers. 

Mum wasn't feeling great on that day and had a terrible headache. Chamomile tea is rarely the cure but on this occasion, it was just the thing! She's asked me to hunt down the tea company and I've narrowed it down to Tealeaves, a luxury tea brand which supplies to five star hotels and Michelin restaurants. 

I'm currently waiting for a shipping quote from the company before I put through a tea order!




We really enjoyed the Tea set, especially the salmon finger sandwiches and the tangerine & orange tart on a chocolate crackle base. I also liked the plain and raisin scones with Devonshire clotted cream, homemade raspberry and apricot jam. The scones were crunchy on the outside, light and fluffy on the outside - absolutely perfect!

Halfway through our meal, a waiter came around with a basket of complimentary snacks. We were each given a brownie cookie which was a lovely gesture. I don't know any other place that does something like this.

In hindsight, two Afternoon Tea sets would have been enough for three people. We were extremely full by the end of our meal!

Service at the Lounge is attentive, quick and friendly. Servers came in and out of our area to often check on us. Whenever this happens at other establishments, I feel pushed to get a move on but this time I didn't feel this way at all. It must have been the servers' relaxed facial expressions that, in turn, made me feel relaxed. Our teas were refilled multiple times and servers occasionally came over to personally pour tea into our cups. 

I've been privileged to have visited and dined in a fair amount of hotels and I have yet to come across one that is so willing to please. There is absolutely no pretentiousness from either the staff or patrons, with the former possessing a genuine happiness to serve. If The Lounge is indicative of the Four Seasons level of professionalism and hospitality, I am extremely excited to visit again. 

The Lounge takes bookings two weeks in advance. Mum called to book a little under two weeks but they were happy to offer us a booking as it was for a birthday celebration!

Four Seasons' The Lounge
Lobby Level
8 Finance St, 
Hong Kong
Tel. (852) 3196-8888

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