Instagram

I update my Instagram almost daily! Look me up @gracemyu

Google+ Followers

Monday, 30 May 2016

Malaysian-Handmade Brand Wunderbath makes coloured tinted lipbalms! Wunderlippies Review + Lip Swatches

Monday, 30 May 2016

Lip balms are my first beauty product I ever owned! I started using lippies towards the end of my primary school years, when every cool popular girl I know made "Lip Ice" the coolest thing to own. I still use lipbalms every day, especially to moisturize my lips before putting on lipsticks.

I got some locally handmade organic lipbalms in my mailbox recently and they are so so awesome because all of them are coloured tinted!


I got 4 from the Wunderlippie range: Elektra, Mary Jane, Rogue and Ms Ivy.


LIP SWATCHES


1. Elektra


A red tone lippie, Elektra is the first lippie I received last year from Wunderbath during one of their collaborations with GoGet and Dirty Benefits. This lip balm has the lightest tint among the four and it's safe to wear to school (if your teachers are strictly against lip colours).


2. Mary Jane


Mary Jane has a vibrant hot pink tone and it's almost as close as wearing a lipstick! I love wearing this on days I feel extra feminine!


3. Rogue


Rogue, like it's name suggests, is a dark burgundy red tone lip balm, which sort of relishes the bad girl in you.
I personally like this the best among the four colours.


4. Ms Ivy


Ms Ivy is the most unique lip balm because of it's purple shade! The name reminds me so much of Poison Ivy, like a venomous spiderlady who is waiting to catch her next prey *haha*





PACKAGING




Elektra's packaging is different from the rest because I received it end of last year, as compared to the rest this year. I personally prefer to previous packaging because of the matte sticker label, as compared to the shiny one now. Nevertheless, the fonts on the newer one looks more appealing! :)


Here's a closer look of the old packaging -





.... and the newer one -








Each of this lip balm retails at RM19.90 and it comes with Wunderbath's Signature Eco Pouch. Aside from lippies, Wunderbath is also known for curating tailor-made soaps especially for events such as weddings, bridal and baby showers, birthdays and even corporate gatherings! 

I think they are priced reasonably, seeing that all products are handmade with love. Instead of giving money to large corporations that are not earth-friendly, I see more reasons to spend it at our local ones who make efforts to make this earth a greener place.

Just a note, I was sent these products as gifts. I was not any under obligations to write a post but I love using these on a daily basis so I thought, why not share it on my blog since it may benefit YOU too? :)


You could find more of Wunderbath products at www.wunderbath.co.


Saturday, 28 May 2016

Clarins "Unlocks" Skin Barrier with NEW Anti-Aging Treatment Essences

Saturday, 28 May 2016


It seems to me that many western companies are channeling towards Asian skincare regime very recently, with the addition of BB cushions and treatment essences to their existing skincare line. This time it's treatment essences by Clarins, a French luxury skincare famous for its V-shaping face serums and eye creams that promises bigger eyes in the long run.

Launching this August 2016, there will be 3 unique face essences targeting different age groups:
25+ years: Multi-Active Treatment Essence Vitality Booster (Light Pink)
35+ years: Extra-Firming Treatment Essence Bounciness Enhancer (Peach)
45+ years: Super Restorative Treatment Essence Smoothness Enhancer (Red)





This will be the first time that a skincare line tailor-made treatment essences based on an individual's unique skin type (or more like age range). Of course, you don't have to be of a certain age to be able to use the essences, these are meant as a guideline as women within that specific age groups tend to have similar skin concerns.


These essences are designed to "unlock" the skin barrier and allow active ingredients to be able to absorb easily and penetrate into the deepest layers of skin. Basically, it will make your serums and moisturizers work better when used together. So if you are who always skip your moisturizer (which is seriously bad!), this will not be able to work on your skin effectively.


There are two ways which you can use this: with cotton pad (10 secs) or used alone by dabbing onto the skin directly (20 secs). Personally I prefer using toners and essences with cotton pads because it allows my essences to last longer before drying up completely (and it's quicker too).


You can expect varying ingredients for these unique essences:

Multi-Active Treatment Essence, RM200
Teasel extract (increases skin cell energy to boost skin vitality); Acerola Seed extract (encourages cellular respiration to boost skin radiance); Myrothamnus extract (slowdown cellular ageing and protection of fibers)

Extra-Firming Treatment Essence, RM215
Lemon Thyme & Green Banana extracts (reinforce skin structure, enhance skin bounciness, smooth wrinkles and firm); Fig extract & hyaluronic acid (supply water to skin, prevent water loss, reduce fine lines, plumps skin)

Super Restorative Treatment Essence, RM265
Pueraria Lobata extract (stimulates synthesis of collagen by fibroblasts); Ginseng & Green Coffee extracts (boost skin radiance); Hibiscus flower acid (exfoliating action)




What do you think of companies creating unique products for your skin needs? I think it is a clever move as the beauty marketplace becomes more and more diversified.

Clarins Anti-Aging Treatment Essences will be available at counters starting from end July 2016.
For more info, you can check www.clarins.com.my

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Health Perspectives: A Reality Check

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Healthy Malaysia? Malaysians Disagree



*

You know, with the trending #instafit posts on Instagram and the rise of fitness models and bodybuilders within the last few years... you think that Malaysians are moving towards a healthier way of life, right?

Well, I thought so too but apparently I was wrong.


Here in today's blogpost, I wish to highlight and address some health matters that have been in the back burner for some time now. It's alarming to me that our country is not really doing so well in the health and fitness department, despite much talk about the importance of it.




A survey called Healthy Living Index (HLI) 2016 conducted by AIA on over 10,000 adults across 15 countries in Asia Pacific pointed out that Malaysia scored a mediocre 63 points (regional average 64) out of 100 in its recent 2016 study. The results also concluded that close to 70% of Malaysian adults felt their health was not good as it was 5 years ago. What's even more worrying is that 61% of adults under the age of 30 agreed with this sentiment, although this younger age group should be in the prime of their health!


A little background…the AIA Health Living Index is a survey conducted to understand how people feel about their health, and the extent of their health habits, as well as their concerns and hopes for a healthier way of life. The inaugural survey was done in 2011, the second wave in 2013 and most recently the third this year. The 2016 survey interviewed adults 18 years and older (including 751 in Malaysia) across 15 countries: China, Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Korea, Taiwan, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka.



I attended the "Health Perspectives: A Reality Check" forum last week, hosted by AIA together with with panelists from the health and fitness industries in Malaysia to talk about the AIA Healthy Living Index on Malaysia findings. We had 5 key speakers:
  1. Thomas Isaac (Director, Intuit Research)
  2. Indra Balaratnam (Consultant Dietitian, Indra Balaratnam Nutrition)
  3. Jacqueline Wong (Head of Learning and Development, Fitness First Asia)
  4. Dr Myralini S. Thesan (Medical Director & Head of Care Management, AIA Health Services Sdn. Bhd.)
  5. Thomas Wong (Chief Marketing Officer, AIA Bhd)



There were a few key points from the survey results that I personally found interesting, namely:


1. Fitness & Exercise


The percentage of adults who exercise regularly is stable at 69%, but even so, they still do not get enough exercise. The average time spent on exercise is only 2.6 hours a week which is lower than the regional average of 3.0 hours and well below the recommended time by most experts which is 3.5 hours a week.


As for me, I personally believe that it is important to take small steps and set achievable goals when it comes to leading a life of fitness. When we have managed to push our limits and achieve our goals, it is then that we can move on to doing bigger, crazier and more challenging goals. Remember to always start small to build the momentum and to achieve great results!




2. Diet & Nutrition


Many Malaysians are guilty of unhealthy eating habits; the attempts at eating healthily are still limited to the basic practices like eating more fruits and vegetables and drinking more water. There are also the common misconceptions on healthy food and I completely agree with this because I was also one of those who had misconceptions about "health foods". Do you recall those energy bars you see at the supermarket? I thought they were great for health but when my boyfriend (who is also the one who educated me a lot on the area of fitness) pointed out that the content of sugar is high for these products, I was seriously shocked! We really have to dig deeper into knowing the food we consume especially when it claims to be a ‘health product’.


Another misconception about "healthy food" is that they are expensive. It is true to a certain extent in my opinion, but not necessarily all is pricey. For example, Indra Balaratnam has pointed out to us that a plate of economy rice can also be considered on healthy food. As long as we opt for lean poultry meat or fish for fuel, with more vegetables and less grease.




3. Obesity is a growing concern


I am not sure if we are aware of the obesity stats in Malaysia, but 55% Malaysian adults are either pre-obese or obese, based on their BMI. There are more Malaysian adults who want to lose weight as compared to the regional average (61% vs 48%), with an average weight loss target of a very substantial 8.5 kgs (!!!), the third highest in the region. This is certainly something new to me. I must admit, Malaysians may not be the fittest people on planet earth (because we have amazing food) but to know that Malaysians are heading towards the path of obesity, we seriously need to keep a close check on our lifestyles.




4. Screen time is steadily becoming a big threat to healthy living


Adults in Malaysia are among those who spend the highest amount of hours on the Internet for non-work related use. 71% find it hard to break the habit of spending too much time in front of screens and 68% find social networking and other activities online addictive.

I can understand why though. The internet has become such an integrated part of our lives that we can’t help but to rely heavily on it to help us get on with our daily lives as it is definitely a faster and more convenient way to getting out tasks done (booking tickets, navigating traffic, paying bills, etc). However the question is, is the convenience at the expense of our health worth it?

During the forum discussion, Ms Indra, the Consultant Dietitian did highlight a major point…Malaysians have a bad habit of scrolling through our smartphones or watching TV as we eat. It is because of this, we are not able to monitor our portions while munching on food. In the AIA Healthy Living Index Survey 2016, 86% of those surveyed said they tend to eat when distracted with their screens. When I heard this, it reminded me of myself and almost everyone around me who loves eating a meal while watching TV. I somewhat agree with her that the portions may go unmonitored because of the distractions. So in order to monitor, we need to set aside our "meal times" to really taste and enjoy our food and see what really goes into our bodies. Parents can play an active role and should help address the issue of excessive screen time for their children, in order to encourage a healthy lifestyle for them.




5. Sleep


Malaysian adults get the least hours of sleep - on average it is only 6.3 hours a night. While they wish to get 7.5 hours of sleep a night, in reality, they only enjoy 6.3 hours – the lowest among the 15 countries surveyed. I strongly believe that we all need enough hours of shut eye to lose those extra pounds. I have realised that I do bloat up badly on days when I am sleep deprived. My whole body seemed to retain more water than usual, and my face becomes puffy as well. So if you're not getting enough rest, it may take a toll on your health.




6. Despite high levels of concerns about various health conditions, getting a medical check up does not seem to be a high priority.


Malaysians are aware of their health issues. However, the problem is that many do not take the initiative to do anything about it. Based on the findings from the AIA Healthy Living Index 2016 survey, only 46% adults had a medical check-up in the past year, dropping below the regional average of 52%. Yes, it goes without saying that medical check-ups can be terrifying and even time consuming, but it is an essential step for us to take to know exactly where we stand with our health.




*



*



*



Despite the challenges, there is still hope for Malaysians to lead a healthy lifestyle! In fact, the survey found there is a desire for Malaysians to do more, and they welcome guidance and motivation to sustain healthy behaviours. In fact, it is encouraging that 75% said they have some small steps in that direction. Malaysians can be motivated to live healthier by doing the following simple steps (I'm going to share it with you here so that you can use it for yourself too!) -

1. Goal setting - change one step at a time
2. Set smaller, achievable goals
3. Track your progress
4. Encourage activities with families and friends so that everyone can support and encourage one another to meet their health goals


*



*



*



I shall reiterate that Health is the most precious thing you own, so own it well! As Joel Fuhrman said, "You cannot buy your health; you must earn it through healthy living".  




Monday, 2 May 2016

Review: SK-II GenOptics Aura Essence

Monday, 2 May 2016



Late March, I received a new bottle of SK-II GenOptics Aura Essence from SK-II's #Auragoals Change Destiny party. The launch reveals 2 new products: GenOptics Aura Essence & GenOptics Spot Essence. After about a month's usage, I decided to pen down my thoughts on the product.

But first, a little background on how these products came about.


*

*

*

UV DAMAGE: MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE Question: Damage to the skin caused by UV exposure results in:
  • Spots
  • Darkness
  • Hidden issues that aren’t visible yet, or
  • All of the above?

The correct answer: All of the above! Spots and darkness are just some of the visible effects caused by UV damage, but there are also hidden effects that lurk beneath the surface of the skin.
Just because you don’t see the effects of UV damage on your skin in your 20s, that doesn’t mean they’re not there – hidden spots caused by UV exposure can take years to appear. I found it fascinating that SK-II broke down that extended UV exposure damages into 10 skin parameters. The hidden damages appear as ‘clouds’ within the skin, blocking skin’s natural aura and radiance.



New Discovery of Skin Clouds

Through extensive study of the science of skin, light and optical properties, SK-II made a breakthrough in skin whitening; more UV exposure causes damage to the skin, leading to visible and hidden age spots and dark and dull skin tone that blocks skin’s aura. In combination these issues create a “cloudy” complexion or “skin clouds” that prevent clearer, more radiant skin; even amongst panelists in their 20 or those less exposed to UV who were yet to experience visible spots.

SK-II’s research detected and measured three factors contributing to skin clouds; brownish clouds representing hidden spots, grayish clouds representing “wide-spread” melanin (dark skin tone /pigmentation) and reddish clouds representing “increased hemoglobin” (dull skin tone).







GenOptics Aura Essence contains two new ingredients – Prunus extract and Inositol – that are absent from Cellumination Aura Essence. In-vitro test results have shown that Prunus extract combined with concentrated Pitera™ and active whitening ingredient, D-melano P3C™ mitigates sunburn damage and melanin formation which lead to dark and dull skin tone, while Inositol increase clarity in cells. The new formula penetrates consistently into the skin, efficiently delivering the ingredients where they are needed. GenOptics Aura Essence replaces Cellumination Aura Essence.


After 8 weeks of continuous use, the GenOptics Aura Essence is said to improve the skin’s spot-less and cloudless aura with significant reduction in age spots and melanins as well as visible improvement in skin tone.


This new bottle also comes with an improved dropper that only requires the touch of one finger, unlike its predecessor with the need of using two fingers. The new auto-fill dropper technology in each GenOptics bottle is specially designed so that one full drop provides the optimal dosage for best results. It amazes me that I don't have to pinch the tip twice in order to fill the dropper, just once will do to dispense the serum!



Left: Cellumination Aura Essence (predecessor) / Right: GenOptics Aura Essence (current)



NEW "CLOUD METER"

SK-II has upgraded its Magic Ring program with a “Cloud Meter” to show signs of UV damage including visible spots and even hidden clouds. ‘Cloud areas’ measure accumulated UV induced damage on the skin while ‘aura areas’ measure the brightness of the skin. The detection of grayish and reddish clouds represent dark and dull skin tone, therefore the bigger the ‘cloud area,’ the less radiant skin is. Meanwhile, the bigger the ‘aura area,’ the brighter the skin is.
Book your Magic Ring consultation today at www.sk-ii.com.my/en/magic-ring.aspx
This is how the Magic Ring Test Looks like, it will measure 5 dimensions of your skin and will show you your skin's resistance against them.




Btw, I'm really really happy because my skin is a couple of years younger than my results!
(๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)و



The Cloud Meter is found under Radiance Enhancement. This is me at 79 after 2 weeks of using SK-II GenOptics Aura Essence. Let's see what happens in a couple of weeks!



MY THOUGHTS

My Skincare Routine:
Cleanser > Toner > Facial Treatment Essence (FTE) > Facial Oils > GenOptics Aura Essence > Moisturizer > Eye Cream

I was a little scared as always whenever it comes to switching up my skincare, as I have sensitive skin. My skin seems to be less tolerating towards new products as I age (oh bummer) so naturally I was very careful and observant with this whitening serum (my skin is sensitive towards anti aging / whitening agents).
It was mentioned that ONE FULL PUMP is the optimum dosage but I only used half of the pippet to get my skin to get used to the product first. I'm really glad I did that because so far it's been going well for me! My skin didn't encounter any breakouts or any small irritation throughout my product usage.
When I took the Magic Ring Test at Parkson 1 Utama recently, the counter lady (Irene) was really impressed that my skin brightness is already showing a high score (which is indicative that the serum is working). She mentioned that she is looking forward to see results in few weeks time as it may increase too :)

At the counter, she educated me on the proper way of using the serum. She poured the serum into her palm, pressed both palms together to create heat using body temperature. After that she inhaled the serum and then placed both palms onto her cheeks, while moving outwards towards the entire face. She also "awaken" the skin by doing a playing piano-like finger motion around the whole face, placing emphasis at the cheekbones, chin, forehead, temples and under eyes area.

Seeing how awesome the product has worked for my skin, I picked another bottle of SK-II Facial Treatment Essence and the latest Facial Oil to be incorporated into my skin regime. Will be posting my thoughts in a month's time, so look out for it soon!



AVAILABILITY

Protect your skin from future spots caused by UV exposure with SK-II’s GenOptics Aura Essence and GenOptics Spot Essence available at all SK-II counters in Malaysia from March 2016.

SK-II GenOptics Aura Essence 30ml RM555 / 50ml RM790
SK-II GenOptics Spot Essence 30 ml RM470 / 50ml RM685 / 75 ml RM920

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Time-Release AquaCell Yoga Visage, Hydration Facial Treatment @ CRES, The Gardens Mid Valley KL

Sunday, 1 May 2016
Spoiler: Read until the end to get a special trial voucher!

Treatment: Time-Release AquaCell Yoga Visage
Duration: 120 minutes; Value: RM478


Truth be told, I'm not really a facial gal. (Weird, I know) I always have this deep fear inside me that my skin will worsen post-facial and the only facial places I trust are only narrowed to 2 places: Aster Spring & Glo Laser Skin.

But Cres has long been a household name in Malaysia and seeing that so many of my blogger friends have only good things to say about them, I finally gave in and went for my first facial treatment at The Gardens Mid Valley.





Like all centres, there is a consultation session to diagnose my skin condition prior to the facial. I was said to have dry and dehydrated skin (no surprise lol), so they recommended me to try their Time-Release AquaCell Yoga Visage treatment.






I really liked the skin analysis machine! It has a thorough breakdown of various skin concerns as pictured above.






In a Nutshell
CRES’ treatment – Time-Release AquaCell Yoga Visage is a high-performance treatment for dry & dehydrated skin (which reinforces skin architecture to provide a complete and thorough solution for skin hydration.

Skin is highly moisturized and last for days. The Yoga lymphatic drainage stimulates the effective absorption of the rich moisture infused. The osmotic regulating features and reinforced hydrolipidic layer provide a time-release mechanism for continuous moisturizing that last for days.








TO RETAIN AND TO BALANCE

Method: All new triple-action bio-intelligent hydration system – Aqualance 24 , which leaves both inner and superficial skin layers adequately hydrated.



1. Aqualance 24 Concentrate wt Hyaluronic Acid & Kinetin

Aqualance 24 Concentrate introduces in-depth hydration while fortifying its natural regeneration mechanism. Skin feels refreshed and regains a supple smoothness without uncomfortable tightness.


2. Aqualance 24 Masque wt Resveratrol & Carnosine HCL

Provides superior efficacy in reviving skin glow and optimizing moisture balance. It helps prevent glycation-induced skin damage while restoring skin with deep relaxation.


3. D’sensi Calming & Hydrating Complex wt Ceramide Complex & Silanediol Salicylate

A type of skin identical lipids which help restore skin protective barrier, providing deep nourishment and insulating skin against moisture loss. Rich in Silanediol Salicylate, D’sensi Calming & Hydrating Complex helps soothe and stabilize the skin. 


4. Aqualance 24 Essence Masque wt Osmoprotectant & Caviar Extract

Boosts the dynamic of skin hydration by regulating osmotic pressure between the cells and their environment. Its Algae and Caviar Extracts progressively rehydrate, nourish and rejuvenate the skin, leaving the skin soft, smooth and radiantly alive.






My Experience

I was attended by a therapist (Catherine) and she was really accommodating. She was gentle throughout the whole process and I appreciated that she mentioned her every step along the way. At least I got to prep myself mentally and this made me more relaxed until the end (facials can be unnerving to me!).

We started off with a head massage to calm my nerves. After that she started to cleanse my face using a cleansing milk with slight facial massage. She then washed it off then continued with a cleansing gel and finished by wiping the solution away with warm cotton pads. Next step was spraying toner all over my face to moisturize my face.

The first mask was Bio mask scrub, which smells amazing like food cereal!!! After that I got a scalp massage with pressure points. I felt so relaxed and sleepy especially with slow soothing music in the background. There's even moderate hair pulling involved near my roots lol.

After washing off the mask, she sprayed toner and this one was minty refreshing! Not long after, she applied specialty lotion to soften blackheads and whiteheads. Which also signifies that there will be an extraction soon!!! *gulp*

Catherine let my face rest under the steam for 5 minutes then she proceeded to extract impurities under a bright light. She did offered me to shape my eyebrows, but I kindly decline (since I love my brows waxed by Benefit Browbar).

We then started with our first machine, with a suction point. This step is crucial to open the lymph nodes around the face, she said. After that she sprayed ampoules over my face with a second machine, which was an oxygen machine. The third machine was used to concentrate and blow/push oxygen into my face (which reminds me of Aster Spring's luxury hydration facial treatment). After that, she lightly massaged my face for skin absorption.

The very last step involved a sheet mask while getting a shoulder and neck massage. And I was able to get some shut eye while reaping the full benefits of the sheet mask :)


Post-Treatment

I love it! Everything smells sooooo good and the products used are gentle on my highly sensitive skin. I did not suffered any redness, only a slight bumpy surface which subsided after a few hours. I am so glad that there weren't any breakouts on my face throughout the whole week after the facial. I managed to maintain a dewy look for the entire week too :)

Would I recommend it? YES!
Cres will definitely be my third addition to "Approved Facial Places" from now on.


Voucher For You
Enjoy this very treatment (Time-Release AquaCell Yoga Visage)
for only RM99 (NP RM478) by downloading and filling in this e-voucher:


Remember to fill in my name "Grace Myu" under the "Complimentary From" column so that they know I sent you there :)


Cres is located at
USJ 03-56365313 / The Gardens 03-22876369 / Metro Prima Kepong 03-62507868
Bukit Tinggi Klang 03-33240828 / Jusco Cheras Selatan 03-90763369
Jusco Seremban 2 06-6015828 / Jusco Bandaraya Melaka 06-2921951
Taman Desa Tebrau JB 07-3577012

Latest Video!

Grace Myu: Malaysia Beauty, Fashion, Lifestyle Blogger © 2014