9:50 AM

Crown Brushes

I first heard of Crown brushes from Vanessa's blog. The reviews I've read on the internet say that their brushes are cheap and have good quality. So the sucker that I am, I ordered a few brushes to try out.

Studio Series
Taklon Liner #2
Round Contour
Large Foundation #1
Bent Liner

Italian Badger Series
Round Tapered Crease
Deluxe Crease

Luna Series
Blending Fluff
Round Crease
Mini Lash Fan
Sable Eyeliner

And I finally got my order today!

I don't know why I ordered mostly eyeliner and crease brushes. I should have at least tried other face brushes. I still have to wash it but my first impression is that the brushes are soft. If there's one brush in the lot that I can't wait to try, it would be the Italian Badger Deluxe Crease brush. It's head is kind of similar to MAC 217. (I just washed the 217 brush that's why it looks like that)

I can't really say much about the brushes because I have yet to try it. But this purchase definitely made me a happy camper. (Most of the brushes cost around $1 -3, except for the large foundation brush which costs $6) :)

Crown Brushes are available online. I'm not so sure though if they ship internationally.

6:20 AM

BKK haul: Gino McCray eyeshadows and blush

A friend of mine went to Bangkok the other week so I googled for makeup brands I can try. I went to Bangkok once but back then, I wasn't that interested as I am interested in makeup now. One brand that called my attention was Gino McCray. I only found a couple of reviews about it but it was enough to pique my interest to try it. I decided to have my friend buy me 4 eyeshadows and 1 blush. I only gave him the number codes, which I wasn't really sure if it was the colors I wanted. I originally wanted a shade in white, yellow, brown and blue. Apparently the number codes that I gave my friend corresponded to brown, gold, black and blue. Not bad, though.

So I got the following:

Gino McCray Benefique Blusher in 06 Lush Raspberry
Gino McCray Pro Make-up Eyeshadow in 02 Black Charcoal
Gino McCray Pro Make-up Eyeshadow in 03 Deep Sky Blue
Gino McCray Pro Make-up Eyeshadow in 10 Wheat Gold
Gino McCray Pro Make-up Eyeshadow in 12 Golden Brown

What the products say:

Gino McCray Benefique Blusher
Gino McCray Benefique Blusher offers the best way to give cheeks color that look natural and fresh. This luxurious blusher glides on smoothly and effortlessly for a soft, youthful glow.

Gino McCray Pro Make-up Eyeshadow
A soft and sily formula that illuminates your eyelids and enhances your natural eyecolor. Gino McCray Pro make-up eyeshadow brings back dimension to your eyes so they look refreshed all day long.

My verdict:

The Blusher is a nice sheer shade of raspberry with a hint of shimmer. I like it because as what the product claims, it glides smoothly and gives a natural glowy finish. I am definitely interested in the other shades.

As for the eyeshadows, I was surprised on how pigmented they were, especially the blue one! The eyeshadows are shimmery and unlike cheap brands, it is not powdery. The colors glide smoothly and are easy to blend. I love it! I just wish I got to try the yellow and white eyeshadows.

L-R Blusher in Lush Raspberry, Eyeshadows in Golden Brown, Wheat Gold, Deep Sky Blue and Black Charcoal

All in all, this was a good buy for the 135 Baht (Php 183) blush and 148 Baht (Php 200) eyeshadows, which all go a long way by the way.

Gino McCray products are available at Cosmeda Shops in Bangkok.

9:35 AM

On Makeup Schools

Since Crystal asked me regarding make-up school, I decided to make a post about it. I know its frustrating researching and choosing the right school for you. Believe me, I've been there. I actually think that I was not able to know enough about the different schools offering make-up artistry classes here in Manila. Lol. But before I go into details, let me just clarify that the contents of this post are solely based on my opinion. I do not intend, in any way, to advertise or even criticize other schools.

I wanted to take make-up classes since about a year and a half ago. My dad, who I am expecting to shoulder some of my expenses, disapproved of it. I think it was primarily because he had the notion that make-up application should be left to the salon or what not. Anyway, I was so frustrated then because I really wanted something to keep me busy. So I decided to take fashion photography classes, which my dad was more than happy to sponsor. I had fun. It kept me busy for awhile but at the back of my head, I knew I still wanted to take the artistic make-up classes. Bottom line is I was able to convince my dad to help me with my expenses in makeup school.

One of the photoshoots I did
Model: Hazel Reyes
MUA: Tricia Roxas
Designer: Mr. Danilo Franco

So my next dilemma was where to enroll. I did a bit of research and ended up with a short list of schools offering Make-up artistry classes here in Manila:

1. Lasalle College International

- 7 sessions, held every Saturday
- provides OJT / apprenticeships

Location: Penthouse, G.C. Corporate Plaza, #150 Legazpi St., Legaspi Village, Makati City
Contact Number: 840-1543
Tuition Fee: 14,500, exclusive of materials
Teacher: Rb Chanco

2. Center for Aesthetic Studies (CAS)

- formerly Franck Provost
- 108 hours, they have Saturday classes, estimate of 3 months duration

Location: 120 Jupiter Street, Bel-Air Village Makati City
Contact Number: 897-0383
Tuition Fee: Php 26,000+ (last I was informed), inclusive of uniform
Teacher/s: Mari Wild, Jen Delica, and Bo (I'm not sure of his last name but he's the one handling the current batch)

3. Maquillage Professionel

Location: Makeup Forever, Serendra, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Contact Number: 856-5243
Tuition Fee: Php 30,000 - 33,000 (Correct me if I'm wrong, I think they have 2 modules)

* for those interested, Care is taking the course here. :)

4. School of Fashion and the Arts (SOFA)

Location: 55 Paseo de Roxas Ave, Makati City
Contact Number: 4915536
Tuition Fee: Php 15,000, exclusive of materials
Teacher: Xeng Zuleta (I think the next batch will be turned over to RB Chanco)

5. Basement Academy

Location: Basement Salon, Ground Level, Carpark Building, Shangri-la Plaza Mall, EDSA Corner Shaw Boulevard
Contact Numbers:
510.2533 / 638.2033
Tuition Fee: 18,500, inclusive of models

So there. Obviously, I chose the first school on my list. I am on my 5th session this coming Saturday. I chose LCI for the following reasons:

1. It fits my budget
2. I took my photography classes there and I liked how accommodating the staff were
3. RB Chanco handles the class. She's the first Filipino to be a certified MAC pro artist though she's not with MAC anymore.

RB, my model marga and I from our 3rd session

So how do i find my classes so far?

I am having a blast! I was lucky to be a part of the smallest batch in LCI history. They normally have a minimum of 10 enrollees in a class. It could reach up to 17 students and the school would hire an assistant for RB. We're only 6 in our batch. So that means a more focused set-up in teaching. Since we only have 7 sessions, I've already expected that lessons will be crammed in one session (but nothing you can't handle just as long as you pay attention). We do lectures and hands-on simultaneously. The 7 sessions are supposedly a whole day duration. RB decided to cut it into half and then allot the remaining hours for on-the-job-trainings / apprenticeships. So you really get to learn a lot.

As for the expenses, I guess the most painful part in this ordeal is shelling out for your materials. Haha. But what the heck, it's an investment (if you're planning to pursue makeup after). A good thing about our class is that RB suggests brands of make-up to use ranging from low, middle and high end cosmetic brands.

I have a friend who is also taking make-up classes but she's enrolled in CAS. A major advantage they have is time. Time provides them the opportunity to have a comprehensive program. (and the tuition says it all lol) According to my friend, they have classes every Saturday for one whole day. First half of the day is lecture and the second half would be hands-on.

All in all, I couldn't and wouldn't complain. RB is a great teacher. She knows how to simplify the lessons so it would be easier to take in. But I tell you, 7 sessions is a reaaaaaallly short time. It passess so quickly. I still can't believe I'm about to take my 5th session.

As for the make-up schools, I think they all provide a good program. The key is to find a school you're most comfortable with. You can actually visit and "sit in" in the classes.

I believe that it all boils down to passion in what you're doing. It's like going to college. Regardless of what school you came from (though it does add to your resume haha), the fundamentals when you go out in the real world are hardwork, passion, and heckload of experience. I do believe those are the key factors to success. :)

7:48 AM

Trying the 4u2 palette and MAC 180 brush

Since it's Good Friday and I've nothing better to do, I decided to try my 4u2 matte palette.

The eye shadows tend to be a bit powdery but not as much as the Coastal Scents palette, which I really don't mind since the color payback is great. The 4U2 palette is definitely a bang for you buck. I think I might get the Impressionist palette next time.

Now I completely forgot about my MAC haul last Saturday. I got a few stuff from a reputable seller (recommended by my teacher) who sells MAC items at a cheaper price (limited stocks). I decided to get the MAC charged water, powder blush in Eversun and the 180 brush.

I almost did not get the MAC 180 brush but my teacher highly recommended that I buy it. and she was right!

The MAC 180 brush (discontinued) is a small buffer brush good for... guess what? buffing. haha Seriously though, I was hesitant to buy this at first because I was thinking that I could just use a big fluffy brush to do the work. But alas, my teacher was right. This brush provides an excellent coverage and what's best is that it is REALLY, REALLY soft. It's so soft that I could fall asleep brushing it to my face. Lol.

The downside? None really. I would've preferred it if it didn't have white bristles but that's just a minor detail. Also, the packaging is so tacky. It comes in a thin plastic tube. I could easily sit on it. But I think the brush could fit in one of those sturdy cotton buds' tube containers.

All in all, the brush was definitely a good buy. :)

4:50 PM

Wishlist: Coastal Scents Concealer Palette and Hot Pots

I visited the Coastal Scents website and found items I want to add to my already long list of things I want to buy.  Stress on want. I need to be scrupulous in drawing the line between what I need to buy and what I want to buy since I'm now  officially unemployed. I quit work since the project I've been working on had finally come to an end plus I'm planning to take a full-time master's degree (which has yet to start this june).

Anyways, I was surprised to see a lot of new items since I've last visited the website. On top of my list are:

Coastal Scents Professional Concealer Palette10c_concealer

taken from CoastalScents.com

What the website says:


Coastal Scents 10 color Camouflage and Concealer Palette has been created for us  using the most commonly applied shades. All makeup artists will benefit by having this in your beauty arsenal. These are cream concealers that offer terrific coverage.

Full opaque coverage, easy to apply with a concealer brush, very blendable to create the shade you need.

Pans measure 1 3/8" in diameter (nearly 1.5 inches)

Matte black case with Silver Logo and content design on front

Measures 9" in length and 4" wide when closed

Ingredients: Squalene, Octyl Palmitate, Beeswax, Talc, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Petrolatum, Propylparaben.

May contain: Titaium Dioxide, Iron Oxides

I am curious on how this product delivers. One person made a review on the website that the lightest shade of the concealer makes a good eyeshadow base, similar to MAC paint pot in Painterly. I checked with Pearl of Dollface Cosmetics and she actually has it for Php 900. I will probably check it out at the Summer Lovin' event at the Fort on May 1 - 3, 2009 since she will be having a booth there.

Coastal Scents Hot Pots


taken from CoastalScents.com

What the website says:

Our magnetic Hot Pots make it easy to set up your 12 or 4 pc carry along palette for any occasion. Choose Blush (B) or Shadows from Matte (M), Satin and Shimmer (S).

Size: 26mm, Net Wt.: 1.3g/0.04oz

Ingredients: Talc, Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Mineral Oil, Magnesium Stearate, Methylparaben. May Contain: Mica and Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides, Ultramarine Blue, Manganese Violet, Chromium Oxide Greens, FD&C Red No.40 Al Lake, FD&C Yellow No.5 Al Lake, FD&C Blue No.1 Al Lake

I definitely WANT to try this out. They have 38 shimmer and 23 matte eyeshadow shades available. Unfotunately, Dollface Cosmetics doesn't carry these so you have to order it online (and shipping costs are pain in the ass).

1:28 AM

Review: 4U2 eyeshadow palette

I absolutely love hunting for good cosmetics at affordable prices. That's why I love Watson's too much. One of my recent discoveries is a brand called 4U2 (Thai). I already have one of their quads (neutrals) and a single eyeshadow. I love 4U2 eyeshadows primarily because it's highly pigmented and cheap! The only problem I have is that they don't have matte eyeshadows.

...or so I thought.

Last Saturday, I passed by Watson's after class to restock on wetwipes and tissue. I passed by the 4U2 counter and was surprised to see a matte eyeshadow palette (Classic). The sales lady said it was the last one and that they seldom restock on it. But since I didn't have money with me then, I tried my luck the next day in the nearest Watson's to my place. And fortunately, they had two! So I got one for myself...




4U2 I-Pro Professional Eye Make-up Palette in Classic

Price: Php 994


  • Highly pigmented

  • Affordable

  • Nice packaging ( i like the mirror haha)


  • No other shades available

  • Other than the first one, I can't think of any

Overall, I think that this palette is a steal for its price. The texture is just alright, not too powdery unlike other drugstore brands. The shimmery palettes are nice too. I just want a matte palette. I especially like how the black and brown turned out. I also recommend their eyeshadow duos and quads. Really worth the price. :)