Throwback Thursday: Favorites from September

Here is a look at my favorites in September 2013 and 2014.  September tends to be a hot month in Japan, so my favorites are still very summer-y!


In September 2013, I liked:

The Beauty Blender (link goes to my review)

I tend to go back to this every few months, even if I find another makeup sponge that I like.  I don’t like the price tag, and I don’t like how it bleeds color, but the texture is hard to beat.



VOV Daily Fresh Apple AHA Peeling Gel (link goes to my review)

This was one of the first AHA products that I have ever tried. I haven’t repurchased it these past few years, because it is hard to find in Japan. I’ll probably try it next time I go to Hong Kong or Korea.



In September 2014, I liked:

Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet + Foundation (link goes to my review)

I don’t know what it is that I love so much about this foundation!  It looks great on my skin, but the lasting power isn’t so fabulous.  I have repurchased this foundation, and I still use it regularly.

Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet + Foundation


Jordana Color Tint Blush in Coral Touch (link goes to my review)

This was a great, affordable cream blush. I was planning on repurchasing it on my next trip to the US, but I couldn’t find it anywhere. It is available online for shipping to the US from Jordana’s website, so I strongly recommend it if you can get it.

Jordana Cosmetics Color Tint Blush Sticks


Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (link goes to my review)

This is, by far, my favorite foundation brush. It gives a great buffed finish, it is soft on my skin, and it is affordable.  Although I have been using sponges almost exclusively recently, I still recommend this brush.
Real Techniques Expert Face Brush


Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Brazilian Tan

This was part of a limited edition collection. This is a warm brown color with a hint of peach.  I realized this is the best nude color for my skin tone!

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Brazilian Tan


Hope you enjoyed this review!


xoxo, K

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Throwback Thursday: Favorites from September

It’s time for Throwback Thursday, where I take a look back my favorites from years past. This time, I’m going back to my favorites from September 2014, 2013, and 2012.


In September 2014, I liked:

Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet + Foundation

I can’t believe I’ve never done a review on this foundation, considering it was my go-to for several years! I liked how this foundation applied and how it looked on my skin. I really like that this comes in a squeeze tube. It is hygienic and does not take up space!



Jordana Color Tint Blush in Coral Touch (link goes to my review)

I go back to these every year. They are cheap, have great color payoff, and look fantastic on my skin. I have almost used them up, so I’m looking forward to repurchasing them next time I go to the US!



Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (link goes to my review)

Still a product I love and use daily! If you like to buff in your foundation, this is the brush to buy. It is cheap, soft, and applies my foundation beautifully. Also, it is small enough that I can even buff in concealer under my eyes.

Real Techniques Expert Face Brush


Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Brazilian Tan

Ahhhh, I searched for this lipstick all throughout New York. Finally, another blogger told me I could find it in Flushing! This is the perfect nude lipstick for me. Not only do I like how it looks on me, I also use it to tone down brighter lipsticks.

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Brazilian Tan


In September 2013, I liked:


The Beauty Blender (link goes to my review)

Wow, I really haven’t been using makeup sponges since I fell in love with the Real Techniques foundation brush. I remember there was a distinct difference between the Beauty Blender (right) and the Sonia Kashuk sponge (left). I don’t know if there are any other companies which make makeup sponges which are as bouncy as the Beauty Blender, which is what I liked so much about it.



VOV Daily Fresh Apple AHA Peeling Gel (link goes to my review)

This mask was one of the first products I ever reviewed on this blog, and I still think it is a great product to gently exfoliate my face. I haven’t used it recently, but writing this blog post made me remember that I like to exfoliate my face towards the end of summer.



In September 2012, I liked:


Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso

I no longer own this blush and I am not sure why. This is one of those peachy-pink shimmer blushes, along the same lines as the NARS Orgasm blush. While I liked this product, I didn’t like how big the packaging was.




As always, it was extremely interesting to see what I liked in past years. This month, there was a nice mix of products I still love and use every day, products I had forgotten about, and products that I no longer count in my favorites.



Any products you have rediscovered lately?


xoxo, K


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Throwback Thursday: Favorites from January

This month, I revisited my annual favorites from 2011 and 2010.

My favorites products from 2011 were:

St Ives Green Tea cleanser (link goes to my review)

This is still my favorite cleanser. It foams up when I use a face washing net, it is lightly exfoliating, and I love the scent. However, it is a little hard for me to find when I go to the US recently.



I used to use Mezaik to change the shape of my double eyelids. This may sound strange to you, but it is a huge obsession for many Japanese and Asian girls. I haven’t used Mezaik recently as I realized it makes me look sleepy in pictures. The packaging of Mezaik has changed recently, so watch out for that if you are looking for it.
I never repurchased this mascara since there are so many on the market. I remember I liked it because it did not smudge under my eye and gave me good volume.
Gosh Lipstick in Darling
This is a super affordable version of MAC’s Myth. Unfortunately both make me look dead. However, I like to layer this on top of other lipsticks which are too bright on my face.
Sonia Kashuk blush brush
I have a love hate relationship with most blush brushes, but I like this one because it is soft and the hairs do not irritate my skin.  It is also super affordable!
After owning a Clarisonic for several years, it seems that mine will no longer hold a charge.  I may have to repurchase it soon.

My favorites products from 2010 were:

Soap & Glory The Fab Pore Facial Peel (link goes to my review)

Since Soap & Glory is not widely available in Japan, I never got a chance to repurchase this product. This is a great mask for getting gunk out of your pores.  Lush’s Mask of Magnaminty has a similar effect.

Lush Honey I Washed the Kids Soap (link goes to my review)

I never repurchased this product since Lush has so many soaps that I can’t keep up!  This product and Lush’s It’s Raining Men shower gel have the same scent, so you can choose whether you prefer soaps or shower gels.

Lush Coal Face Cleanser (link goes to my review)

As much as I loved this product, I never repurchased it! I may decide to pick this up again in the summer.

VOV Watershot Foundation  (review here and here)
This was my favorite foundation while I lived in China.  It is a very natural looking foundation which feels very light on the skin. These days, I prefer my Estee Lauder Double Wear.
Barry M Dazzle Dusts in Mushroom (mentioned several times in my blog, look here)
This is still one of my favorite Barry M Dazzle Dusts. Each pot contains so much product that I am still working through them, 4 years later!
(swatch second from left)
Sonia Kashuk Flat Top Brush (mentioned several times in my blog, look here)
This used to be my favorite way of applying foundation. These days, I prefer round top brushes, such as the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush.
MAC 217
I still use this every day and it is one the essential brushes in my collection.  Since they are hand cut, each one is slightly different.  I definitely like one of my 217s better than the other!
Hope you enjoyed this look back to my old favorites!
xoxo, K
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Up and Down #36: September, 2013

(purchased products)

I have been back in Japan nearly a month, and it has been crazy busy. I feel like I have been getting stuff every weekend, and I spend most of my free time cleaning and organizing. As I mentioned several times, my new apartment is about 1/3 the size of my previous apartment in Japan, and so I have had to throw out a lot of stuff. I have also had to do a lot of smart organizing, and I have been buying a lot of things to help me organize!

On to my Ups and Downs!


the Beauty Blender (link goes to my review)
In hot, humid weather, I don’t want anything heavy on my skin. The Beauty Blender is great for applying a thin layer of foundation.
(Wow, this is an old picture… Long time readers may remember that this blog used to be called Bihada Diaries!)

VOV Daily Fresh Apple AHA Peeling Gel (link goes to my review)
With sun damage and slower cell turnover in the summer, exfoliating is key for me to avoid getting breakouts.

Gel nails
No pictures yet, since I absolutely suck! 

Owning a TV
Can you believe it? This is the first time I have ever owned a TV.

Homemade Popsicles
Mine are SUPER simple – just 100% fruit juice poured into a mold.  And the mold is from a 100 yen store. Totally worth it!

(picture from Amazon)


It is SOOOO hot in Japan right now… 
It is the hottest summer in recorded history! Being outside in this heat is extremely exhausting.
Hope you enjoyed your August!
xoxo, K
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Revisited review: VOV Daily Fresh Mini Pack Apple AHA Peeling Gel

(purchased product)

Every year in the summer, I get small pimples on my chin. I have gotten them since I was in high school, and even after consulting several dermatologists, the conclusion is that my skin can’t handle the heat very well. One of the ways I try to minimize the damage is through exfoliation. The VOV Daily Fresh Apple AHA Peeling Gel is one of the most effective exfoliating masks that I have tried! I reviewed this once before (in 2009!!!) and I fell in love with it after trying it again.

What it does: (VOV does not have an English website. I originally tried this because AHA is a known chemical exfoliator)
Price: According to my previous review, these were $1 each in Korea. I bought mine from Sasa in Hong Kong for about 10 HKD ($1.30 USD)
How to use:
This product comes out as a whitish gel. I apply the gel to my face and leave it for a few minutes before washing it off. Amazingly, this product started peeling off immediately after I started applying it, probably because my skin was in dire need of exfoliation!
  • This is the most effective exfoliator that I have tried. I could immediately feel the difference in my skin! It was much softer and smoother after using this product.
  • This is a very affordable product, at least in Korea and Hong Kong. (note: not all Sasa stores in Hong Kong carry VOV masks. I pick them up as soon as I find them)
  • I don’t have to peel this mask off. (I don’t like masks that I need to peel off of my whole face – they hurt too much!)
  • As with most other chemical exfoliators, this product may sting your skin. Use this carefully if you have sensitive skin.
If you are like me and impatient to see the effects of skin care products, this is a good product for you!
Hope you enjoyed this review!
xoxo, K
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