Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sushi CHOO CHOO~~~

Went through some pics on my fone and almost forgot that I had taken pictures of my dinner in the city with my sister about 2weeks ago. We didn't feel like anything heavy and decided to go for sushi train CHOO CHOO!!! hahhahhaha...
Where did we go?

TOMODACHI...Yep it's this Japanese restaurant in the city at Melbourne Central. I have to admit it ain't the best sushi train out there and guess what? My sis and I happened to eat up to $79 in total!!! Two chicks eating up to 80bucks is like crazy... that's the price of eating yumcha with 3 ppl~~~

So the calculations of the choices you make are according to the coloured plates you pick. I forgot whether the golden plates or the black plates were the most expensive but we had quite a few of those~~~~ hahahahahaa no wonder the bill was like crazy.....

We really shouldda sat closer to the chef all the way down the other end... so we could get the freshest made sushis and the new varieties... By the time it came around all the new stuff was gone, snatched by others BOO~~~

You know it girls, how do we always finish off a meal to feel absolutely satisfied? DESSERT TIME!!!!! OH YEA~~~~ Now I'm pretty sure these were quite pricey too.... but we didn't care or at least I didn't care coz I wanted to try's what we got...

This something they called vanilla ice-cream wrapped in rice cake (kinda what it said on the menu). I was interested in what it was... asked the waiteress and she didn't describe it well but I just decided to get it anyway. It's really just like a mochi gooey skin wrapping up a ball of vanilla ice-cream with fresh strawberries and strawberry sauce. It was quite nice and clean way to finish off the meal (this was my choice).

My sister's choice on the other hand was this green tea ice-cream, sprinkled with nuts with a red bean paste bottom base. The whole thing came together really nicely and it tasted awesome... ICE-CREAM ALL THE WAY!!!

Completely cleaned up the plates OMGoodness....Delicious and for a dinner which was meant to be just a light one.... turned out to be one which filled me up to the neck hahaahahah...

I'll be having some more Japanese with my friend sometime soon, we've decided on Japanese BBQ (Yakiniku) and it's a place we have to book in advance becoz it's like popular and always packed... (with the limited seats for the actual BBQ area). So I'll be sure to share on that when it's over haahahaha.

On another note: here's the reveal of the nail polish I wore in my makeup post previously... Nice guess Linh aka xSplendidStar you were half right hehehee... Most would have guessed that I love O.P.I nail polishes. So you were right it was from OPI :) . The name of it is... Done out in Deco, indeed it is a very lilac purple colour. Following on from my pastel Spring colours I've posted about previously I thought I'd go back and see what else I had that fits this bright colourful new season...

So here it is...

It's a lil more toned down from the previous blues, greens and pinks I've been wearing but it still brings out that lovely lavender colour which also reminds me of Spring :)

Alright that's all I have to share in a very quick way (I'm sorry)...stay tuned for other my mini clothing haul which consists of mini skirts LOL....Take care now.

Luv from Me

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Makeup 2 compliment your acne battle

Awesome, I woke up early today and decided I better get on with doing my follow up post about my current makeup routine. Previously, I mentioned I'm going through my Oratane acne treatment and therefore had to change my skincare routine and the products I used (which I also shared). Now i'ts onto the makeup part becoz frankly I can't leave the house with a lil bit of makeup. Hrrmmm...I've probably been wearing makeup from time to time in high school (just to go against the rules) and practically EVERYDAY out of my 4yrs at uni. So I think I've learnt a thing or two...well at least the basics so let's get started.

Firstly, I'll let you guys know what I used to wear on a daily basis for a comparison coz the amount has shrunk a lot.

Base makeup: the usual base control, liquid foundation, concealer, bronzer for contouring and pressed powder to finish.

Point makeup: eyebrows, lashes, blush, eye shadow, lipstick....(the usual)

The above pics were from my old blog coz I couldn't be bothered taking them again. Now I LOVE makeup but I hate caking it on... and the above base makeup is what I would consider to be a heavy load on the face. My simplied version (when lazy) used to be like this....

But as you all know...too much makeup can aggravate your acne to some degree. Therefore, my old concealer, base control, liquid foundations were all going to be too much on the skin now. That's not to say that you can't ever wear makeup while being on acne meds, provided you pick the right products, remove the makeup properly, protect and moisturise your skin thoroughly blah blah blah.... My dermo said that it's harder for young adults (like me hahhahaah) to be going through acne becoz it's really the time when we need to face the world and make an impression, so he understands that makeup is kinda necessary to a degree. PHEW~~~ hehehheheh

Oratane or any similar acne treatment meds requires your makeup products to have a sunscreen ingredient in it for the protection against the sun, especially when you become more and more sun sensitive during the course of the treatment. Makeup should also be oil free so it does not further clog up the already clogged pores on the face...causing yep... you got it more acne. Powders are great on acne skin particularly mineral powders as they do not sink into the skin but sit on top to give that even look, but any sort of powder would be fine with acne prone skin. Lip products should also contain sunscreen ingredients but for the most part be moisturising. Concealers or cover sticks should somehow have medicated ingredients to fight/prevent acne as most are a thick creamy texture it really does make it hard on the acne areas you try to conceal (I avoid concealing altogether).

Now before I show you what I use and how I do it... I have to admit I don't follow all the instructions to the bone becoz I really just use what I've currently got which seems to work fine without making my skin any worse. So this stuff works on me... but may not work on others so let's start....

So always start with a clean, moisturised and sunscreened face (skincare I use). Don't mind my acne scars and redness since I tend to flush heaps after I wash my face and applying moisturiser haahhahaha

So this is my foundation substitute these days. My Missha M Perfect Cover BBcream with SPF42+++ in shade No.21 (light beige). I only use a minimal amount as you can see coz it spreads real easy...The thing is... I don't intentionally go and cover all my blemishes, I just want my skin tone to look even. Heaps of reviews have been done about this product so I'm not going to go into it but I DO LOVE IT!!!

See, you catch my drift now... It's taken away the redness, evened out the skin tone but is still quite light on the face. I steer clear of my eye areas and focus the product on my cheeks and chin (most red areas). The important thing about putting on bbcream or oil free foundation is that... since you're already so dry... smearing or rubbing the stuff onto the face will only create dry flakes and it ain't pretty... So what I do is a dabbing motion... which takes time to cover your face but the dab and pat action means you're only applying it to the surface of the face and not rubbing into the pores as much. Therefore, no flakey dry skin appearing becoz you're not being rough when applying. There is no way about it just use your hands people ...with gentle dabs and it will spread so don't worry.

Then it's onto the eyes...

I also don't do much to my eyes these days but just wanting to excentuate them a lil since I have monolids and they are quite small hahahaha.... So the usual eyeliner and mascara is a must. The pic where I'm holding on the red mascara with my nose and upper lip is where you can see a difference between my made up eye and the eye with nothing (very subtle) but can you guess which eye has makeup?

My subtle eye transformation
That's right... nothing special at all... nothing bling bling or captivating about these eyes hahahaha... but I'm probably all about that now... being simple that is (hard to do when I've got a stack of makeup just sitting there and telling me to use them~~~~) LOL. No heavy eyeliner and no heavy clumpy mascara just your simple everyday eye do (well for me anyway).

As for the cheeks... well recently while entering Blovet beauty's follower giveaway I had mentioned that my current makeup product is the Posie Tint from Benefit. Once my redness calms down and the bbcream is applied I actually look quite pale and many would mistaken me for being sick haahahah...So a flush of colour is a must. Pinkey, rosey cheeks are just so adorable don't you think? Anyway, this stuff lasts all day and not much is needed for that natural look. (Actually you can probably see the difference in my eyes better in the above middle pic hahahaha... I wanted to do a comparison of the 2eyes at each step but screw it... I went ahead and did the other eye to finish the look afterwards ahahaha).

Lippie time... must apply a lip balm beforehand but not too much that it looks and feels oily (just enough). Then go ahead and apply your complimenting lipstick or lipgloss since there are no restrictions on this part for acne prone skin heheheehe...

Since any powder is allowed with acne prone skin I decided to stick to my pressed powder which I've always used. I find mineral powder or loose powder too messy... I do have them and may go back using them later when I feel like it hahaahaha... This is just to set the bbcream and tone down that pink blush...sometimes I have a tendency to go too crazy with my blush ahahahahah (but it's fixable).

So with my previous makeup products I used (pics at start of post)...I find that I was also super oily after 2-3hrs of wearing it...And have to blot away the oil when I can. But now that I've simplified things and taking the Oratane meds  I notice that I don't produce as much oil as I did before. I still carry oil blotting sheets but I don't use them as often. Since I'm only like 2months into my meds, my oil production on the face has been diminishing each week which is good (but means I'm super dry too~~~).
Stuff I used to complete my everyday look:
Face: Missha M Perfect Cover BBcream (No.21 light beige)
         Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Pressedd Powder (No.1 pale yellow)

Cheeks: Benefit's Posie Tint

Eyes: Revlon Colorstay eyeliner crayon (Black/noir)
         Kiss Me Heroine make liquid eyeliner (black)
         Majolica Majorca curl, curl, curl toward the sky mascara base
         Helena Rubinstein Lash Queen Feline Blacks (waterproof)
         IMJU Opera Mylash mascara (black)- for bottom lashes only
         Shiseido eyelash curler

Lips: Lucas Papaw lip balm
        MAC Dsquared lipstick in Nude rose (lustre)

Compared to what I used before ... I couldn't fit what I would wear daily in one shot...So I guess I have cut back and for the better too hehehheh... wanna see the finished look?

So there it is... what I use makeup wise to compliment my acne treatment atm...Hope this has been informative and highlights the importance of keeping it simple for the sake of having better skin. I mean I'll only have to lay off any sort of creative makeup for 3-6months (seeing how I go on the meds) and is a small price to pay in the long run. Don't try to hide every blemish and pimple spot it will only get worse with concealer type stuff... I would steer well clear of that. I remove my makeup the instant I walk through my door, coz right now every min counts when you have stuff on your face. Enjoying the naked face feel now when I didn't before haahahaha...But no choice when I have to go out so a somewhat even skin tone just enhances it a lil. Oh and I don't cover my eye bags or dark circles anymore as you can see... since I'm no longer using concealer...I just let it be hahahahaha....

That's my daily do guys... hope you enjoyed it... any questions feel free to ask and yea catch you later. OH and can you guess what nail polish colour I'm wearing...??? I'll share it next time.

Luv from Me

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bird watch...

Have no idea why I did this but...then again I just find it amusing I guess...So I was home the other day and while making brekkie I noticed a lil maggie (magpie) sitting in our backyard on the clothes line. I can see it coz our kitchen looks out onto our backyard area and the main road beyond that. Several hours later I head back to the kitchen the maggie is still there... so I found it interesting and wondered what it could be doing or waiting for???

Lil' mag just sitting there under the heat of the sun~~~Kinda looks like a fluffy penguin in a way... then what happens....

The family shows up hahahaah... and the lil mag was being fed by either its mum or dad regurgitating into him/her ewwww~~~~~ And this feeding frenzy went on for hours I suppose but I was only looking out on the action for probably 15mins hahhaahaha ain't no serious bird watcher (just curious).

In the short amount of time I was pondering over what the heck this bird was doing on my clothes line for so long... I managed to capture several sides to its behaviour (here's what I think was going on in its head ahahahahahahah maybe?). The parents would come back regurgitate and then fly off to get some more food and fed lil' mag. It's quite fascinating now I think of it.. our lives are too busy to notice such things as nature and animals around us daily. And then to appreciate them for their part in the environment is just rare. Sometimes it's great to just sit there and observe in peace while taking in all the surroundings around you. Makes you think about weird thoughts like ... what if I was a bird?...  would life be any easier?... wonder how it's like to fly? their family behaviours any different from mine?...hehehehe...

No doubt, we keep ourselves occupied at all times becoz it's the way of life but that doesn't mean we have to miss out on alone time to notice certain beautiful thinigs which constantly remind us that amusing things can occur anytime or anywhere. If you just take the time to reflect on other things beyond your work/school/social life an internal realisation that certain things just don't matter as much, you'll actually feel content and happy in that moment :)

On the subject of birds~~~ we have heaps of birds in Melb and most of my friends hates pigeons for some reason (saying that they are dirty...). In my area I also have cockatoos, parrots, ducks, geese, magpies, black crows and heaps of other native birds I'm not too sure about...I guess I do live in the woods somehow hahhhahaa... here's a pic of seagulls feeding in front of our State Library in the city....(heaps of them...)
Ok this was just something I wanted to share before I headed off to bed... will do the makeup for acne skin a lil later when I get time but I have to admit I've got heaps on my plate these days...So sorry guys but I'll do my best!!!

Signing off with pics I just took on my laptop webcam...I just got home from the city... met up with a friend I haven't seen in ages, we caught up over dinner and chatted about all sorts of things going on between us (regular chick stuff). Fully enjoyed myself but I'm damn tired~~~ as you can tell (yawning)... but wanted to be playful (FAILED). Stay well all of you and I'll see what other random posts I can come up with in the future hahhahaha stay tuned....

Luv from Me

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Quick Blovet Beauty's giveaway mention

Alright this is a real quickie becoz I was happily surfing the internet and came across Blovet Beauty's 100th follower giveaway WOO HOO~~~~ CONGRATS TO HER...She's done so well for only being on blogger for 3months... Whereas for me... I'm still practically relatively NEW so I can't complain, it might take me ages to do the same amount as her in 3months hahahhahaha (life gets in the way bleh~~~).

So anyway all who are her followers or want to follow her .... I highly recommend you check out her blog by clicking here. She's offering so much in her giveaway to show her love for this online community and supporters and I totally appreciate her on a great gesture. She's such a sweetie and pretty of course : )

Here are the prizes and the things you'll need to do to enter this giveaway... first and foremost go and be her follower already...It's such a great read and totally loving and sensing her passion for makeup (amongst all other makeup fanatics here hahahaaha).

Alrighty I've done my part now and fingers crossed I win hahaahaha... probably not coz I have such bad luck BUT I just love entering hehehehe

Luv from Me

Monday, October 26, 2009

Promised skin care routine

Okie dokie~~ I'm back people.... It's been probably way too long that I've done a serious post coz my internet was capped what a bummer~~~ And I'll try to use my internet usage sparingly or I might even consider upgrading to more download usage? Hrmmmm... I like the 2nd idea hahaahahah

So this is the long awaited skincare routine I promised right after I shared my acne fighting post. I thought it would be great to do this since what you use on your face when you are fighting acne is completely different to when you have normal skin and you don't need to avoid anything. This is no longer the case for me since I'm have developed terribly sensitive, dry and sunsensitive skin all over (caused by Oratane).

Let me first mention that I was a huge Lancome skincare fan (up till 2months ago) hahaahhaa... My friend Sunny from Korea introduced the range to me and says that it was popular amongst Korean women. I gave it a try and didn't turn back especially coz I was using the whitening range which wasn't available in Australia (had to order from Japan).

It was quite effective and people started to notice that I was getting a lil whiter at a time (which was the point heheheeh). In terms of routine it was the full lot... cleanser, toner, moisturiser, whitening eye serum (shiseido) and eye soother (shiseido),sunscreen. For a long time since my teen years, I was using Shiseido products and couldn't move on from the brand. It wasn't like it was doing miracles on me but I didn't know what else I could use and I wasn't very experimental at all back then ahahahahaaha...

Then as soon as I ran out of my second batch of whitening products from Lancome and with the economy going bust  I didn't think it was worth purchasing more till the economy and exchange rate were getting better hahahahhaaha... (I'm quite practical). Then I got given certain skincare items which Sunny's parents would kindly add to her package over to Australia especially for me and somehow I was living off using them (just whatever was given).

When you run out and money is tight it's great to get free stuff to try and in the above photo I have to admit that I only purchased the Lancome tonique toner (blue clear bottle), the rest was a gift from Sunny's parents (God bless them, so terribly sweet~~~). Loved the Mousse Eclat foam cleanser and was also given the Giorgio Armani Crema Nera moisturiser (black container) this stuff was seriously expensive to buy retail in Australia and I got to try it for free hehehehe... I then got the Lancome Hydra Zen and the Kiehl's Ultra facial moisturiser as samples to try out. I was sorta alternating between 3 moisturisers before I started my acne medication... I particularly loved the Kiehl's stuff coz it wasn't as harsh over a prolonged period of time... So these were the stuff I would have used only months ago and now onto the stuff I prefer to use NOW (photos below).

Yep, packaging may not be as attractive and the products are mainly quite inexpensive but it gets the job done and protects you 24/7. Wanna check me out in action? Here we go.... (don't mind the photos I took them at night in the bathroom right after I it's a lil dark + my naked face bleh~~~ but you get the point)

It's the best time to do your skincare when you get outta the shower becoz due to warmth from the steam and water it keeps the pores open for a lil longer. So first you must cleanse to get rid of extra dirt and whatnot left behind from a full day out or even when you've been home all day, your face picks up stuff. TIP: DO NOT wash/cleanse your face in the shower... this is no joke. Many keep a bottle of cleanser in the shower becoz it's just easier to reach for it and wash ur face while you're already washing your body. BIG NONO!!! the warm water coming from the shower head due to gravity actually hits your face much harder than you think. Since the skin on your face is very delicate and sensitive, this face under shower head bad habit can permenantly damage your facial capillaries and is especially harsh on your facial skin when you're already sensitive (So please kick the habit if you're still doing it). I'm currently really into my Cetaphil gentle skin cleanser for sensitive, dry skin (recommended by my dermo). This stuff is great when you're fighting acne, it's terribly gentle, does not contain any soap ingredients (so it doesn't foam up), pH balanced, gooey liquid consistency and free from fragrance (which won't cause allergic reactions). I have to admit I wasn't overly excited about Cetaphil coz it wasn't Lancome ahahhahahaa... but it really does wonders, and works hand in hand with my acne medication.

Then I just moisturise with my trusty Kiehl's ultra facial cream...tried the moisturiser one but wasn't as longer lasting as the cream version. So I'm definitely loving this for my face. It's still quite light weight despite it being a creamy texture and boy does it keep you moisturised for the whole day. Really does keep the skin plump on the face and keeps flaky skin far far away. This stuff is a lil more pricey than Cetaphil but I'm willing to spend on a good moisturiser which also isn't too harsh. People when you apply your moisturiser and you feel a stinging, tingling sensation .... YOU ARE TOO DRY!!! You're not moisturising enough, not using enough and not doing it often enough... so keep it up and you can keep old saggy skin away for a lil while yet. It's terribly important to moisturise especially when you're on acne meds as it dries you out like crazy and there is no other way about it JUST DO IT!!!

Then it's time for moisturing your lips as that gets the driest of all... Lucas' papaw ointment is the best as it's made from fresh carica papaya which is then fermented (quite organic). This can be used for boils, burns, cuts, chafing, cracked skin, rash, insect bites, open wounds and nappy rash (multi-purpose ointment). Most girls in Australia has this in their handbag coz it's made locally in Aus and inexpensive. It does wonders on your lips in particular, I have to say it's my fave compared to vaseline :)

During the day I also cannot leave the house without sunscreen on the face becoz my skin turns real red once the sun hits my skin. So it must be protected...currently I'm finishing off my Lancome UV Expert also not available in Australia. And I love it for maximum protection with SPF50 PA+++ so the sun doesn't get down to damaging the DNA in the skin. But once I run out I'm gonna try something cheaper and more generic, since they say SPF 30 is all you need to stay protected in Aus (although I'm a lil unsure about this, coz I'm sure the sun is way more harsher or at least it feels that way~~~).

So I go from expensive high end skincare products cleansing, toning, serums, moisturising, sunscreen and eye stuff to pretty inexpensive stuff you buy at chemists or drugstores which consists of just cleansing well and just moisturising really thoroughly. No toning and no other mish mash. Keep it simple when you're on acne meds or just for the sake of not burdening your skin with too much.

Skincare to me isn't only about the face (although I have been focusing on it previously) but it's about  the whole body. Since I'm on the meds it dries out the entire body, so I moisturise with Cetaphil moisturising cream and this goes all over the body to help lock in the moisture while adding more moisture. And since I'm so dry nowadays my skin just absorbs the moisturiser, which means I have to do it at least twice a day so I don't become flaky all over. There are areas on the body which dries out more such as your knees, back of the knees, elbows, earlobes, hands, feet and the neck. For these areas I would use a baby product called Dermeze ointment which has the consistency of vaseline quite dense and thick. And you just smear it on the driest areas to keep them from cracking or drying up any further. Baby products are the best for people going through their acne treatments becoz it's the most gentle products you'll find in the marketplace for skincare.

So I think I've covered everything to what I used before and what I'm using now. From the face to the body. People I can't stress enough how important it is to care about the most important organ of the body (the skin) becoz it's whats protecting us from many outside extremities. Keep it simple but washing, moisturising and sunscreening and you'll be safe. This is especially important to those who are on acne meds like me...use what your dermo recommends coz they know best and don't be afraid of cheaper products coz it promises the basic protection for your skin while minusing out all the complicated stuff which may cause harm on your sensitive skin in the meantime when you're fighting acne.

Wow... so this has been another long post and I'm sorry about that but I just felt this all had to be shared for the sake of people going through their acne battles like me atm. Check out the finished product...clean and fresh face...ready for bed hahaahahaa

So you're probably asking can you wear makeup while fighting acne? Well I'll share that too next time and the changes I've made to my makeup stay tuned... Here's a preview of how simple I keep my makeup

A failed attempt of capturing my eye...had the strands of hair in front and I didn't even notice it... but you get the idea ahhahaha Shows my eye shape and what I look like with eye makeup on....

Alright till next time stay well you guys... Oh and don't forget to vote on my poll on the right side bar...I really wanna know how often other girls go to the salon to get their hair done hahhahaha

Luv from Me

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I ate a dog~~~

Ok people before you start hating me for my outrageous post title let me just show you what I really mean....


I ate this lil fella hahahahah... A Shitzu shaped tiramisu cake... I almost had ya didn't I? HAHAHAHA... Gosh I don't even eat red meat let alone eating dog meat (NOWAY!!!). My mum bought this on a Sunday...she came home with a huge cake box and told me that it was a dog...Man I totally didn't get what she meant but there you go.... She said it was too damn cute and just had to get it~~~

Geez...I have to agree with my mum on that one... it's just too darn adorable...Look at those chocolate puppy eyes and it's big button nose...and it's lil strawberry tongue. Aww~~~ Looks so realistic too don't you think?

Then we had to dig in and eat it hahahaaha... It says it's a tiramisu cake but seemed more like a coffee scroll cake...and throughout the log there is a fudg-y chocolate centre, which my sister finds ironic it's like having the dog crap running through the dog's body~~~ oh dear~~~ (wish she hadn't said that) hehehehe...There was no doubt heaps of cream scraping before you can eat this dog it was totally covered with it but guess we only cared about the whole novelty thing about this cake (wasn't a great cake afterall). Oh btw this cake was from Bread Top (I think) just an Asian bakery place throughout Melb if you see one .... just wave hi to the dogs!!! hahaaahahaa... Woke up in the morning, opened up the fridge to grab some milk and found the dog's head in a plastic container (must have been the leftovers). Man...I felt so bad for the cute lil dog with it's head crammed in a box and kept talking to it (you poor thing~~). Think my dad thought I was going insane LOL. Come on people look at that face (above) again and tell me that you wouldn't talk to it too~~~ (or maybe it's just me)

While I'm on the topic of sweet stuff... I also wanted to share something my friend made for me last week. I'm not a good cook when it comes to making sweet cakes and whatnot but I'm much better at heavy savoury stuff. My friend Vivian happened to be making a cake for her boss's wife's birthday and had decided on a Mango mousse cake. She made some for me to try to and handed it to me in a lil container and it's probably my first time tasting her cooking.

Ok so these were taken on my phone but it still looks great right? With strawberry decoration and all... mango mousse with a cake base on the bottom. I'm not a fan of sweet stuff and this wasn't that sweet at all which is great for me. Totally enjoyed it and could tell she really went through all the trouble to make it. Thanks Viv!!!

The same day I was given the cake I happened to come across this new cupcake place in QV as I was going home. Now in my old blog (if you've read it) I made a post on the cupcake bakery which opened not long ago in Melb Central. Well I thought I'd try this place out too so headed there to see what they had left (it was the end of the day unfortunately).

There are heaps of these cupcake franchises popping up nowadays and this one is joining in on the popularity and demand for such treats. This place is the cupcake FAMILY not to be mistaken for the cupcake BAKERY hhahahaha... So I was lining up to get what I wanted and there weren't much left to choose from, and I'm not kidding everyone in the line were COUPLES~~~ all chattering about what they would like to try bleh~~~ Guess these are treats to have with your partner for a romantic night in after dinner~~ but whatever... I was determined to get my hands on some before they ran out. They also sell mini cupcakes but I got the regular sized ones to get a real taste of what they're like.

So I quickly picked the two that were most appealing to me...I got the snowy strawberry which had a sherbet like frosting and a gluten free chocolate muffin (quite bland actually). I also got the green tea cupcake and this tasted much better, it had that green tea plus sweet taste of what cupcakes are supposed to be but it wasn't too sweet hahaahaha... Their varieties I have to admit are quite different from the cupcake bakery with the usual ones you would find but it was worth a try. If you're in Melbourne you're not going to miss these franchises in and around the area, if you see it just try it (but not too much heheheeh).

Ok this was really just a quick post I wanted to do before I get into my skincare stuff (but still working on putting watermarks on them...) So do you have a sweet tooth? Do you fancy cakes and cupcakes? Hope I haven't aroused too many cravings or offended anyone with my post title especially if you're a dog lover hahahahahaha... sorry man~~~~ BUT it was only a cake in the shape of a dog........heheheheh


Monday, October 19, 2009

My acne fight!

This will be my 1st long post yet…coz I really wanna share all the knowledge I know about developing acne and treating them (through my personal experience). So let’s get right into it:

Skin condition history:

Well, you probably wouldn’t believe it but I was never this fair and I quite enjoyed my time in the sun back in high school. It was also through my junior years in high school that I didn’t have any problems with my skin until I realized I was starting to breakout in my senior years. This was quite normal I guess but it was only the occasional zits here and there (big sore red ones too) but nothing you can’t handle (with an added bit of teasing~~~~). When I was 16 I suddenly didn’t have any more acne problems to deal with because I was going through some medical treatments which prevented me from breaking out…it was a couple of years I got to enjoy flawless skin woo hoo… Once I started recovering and got into uni it was about my 3rd year there that I started to breakout once again… this time it’s worse, I originally thought it was due to stress, bad eating habits and lack of sleep caused by my studies. And since I didn’t have the time to really deal with it I did the best I can back then to conceal all the spots but it just got worse… I recently graduated from uni and thought my bad skin days would be gone soon… but you wouldn’t believe it the acne condition got worse than when I was studying~~~ what the indeed…. My acne regions were along my jaw line, my chin and my two cheek areas. The worst was probably my chin it would get so sore and red that it would be difficult to talk as any movement was just too painful.

My previous treatments:

Ok, so I started caring for my skin when I was a teen in order to prevent such bad events of severe acne but I failed… If there is anything out there that claims to fight or prevent acne…believe me I’ve tried them all. Let’s list them: facial treatments, IPL, microdermabrasion, topical solutions (sorta alcohol like), a great skincare routine, eating a healthy diet, sun protection, drinking heaps of water, tried mineral makeup, antibiotics, taking the pill with acne fighting ingredients in it, fruit extract juices (packed with antioxidants), dietary supplements which helps heal skin conditions (eg. Evening primrose capsules), sleeping early, trying to relax and not cause any more anxieties or stress, oil blotting…. You name it and I’ve tried it guess I was desperate for an answer. Here’s is where I think I should mention my younger sister who suffered severe acne in high school, went to see the dermatologist and was on the Oratane treatment (exactly the same as Roaccutane or Accutane). As the acne was spreading from her face to her chest and back… It’s now completely gone and she has great skin … baby smooth actually so that definitely worked for her… But I wasn’t convinced about giving this a try until it was my last resort. And yep, I was pretty much at my wit’s end by now as I haven’t had a break from acne for years (never had a break from pain on my face) and whether I was going through my menstrual cycle or not it just didn’t matter it was just continuous and annoying… With all the bad side effects I’ve heard about the strong drugs for fighting acne, I was really reluctant to go on them but there was no choice…But only if you have tried absolutely everything you can, including changing your lifestyle, only then can you start to consider consulting your GP about such treatments as Oratane.

What is acne?

I know many gurus or bloggers have addressed this question but here’s my take on it from what my docs have told me. Acne develops from the oil producing glands under the surface of the skin, there is no problem having slightly oily skin because there is a purpose for it. It is the oil that is produced which flows to the surface of the pores at the same time taking away the dead skin cells along the walls of the pores (and that’s a good thing). However, when excess oil is being produced and is mixed with dead skin cells it clogs up the pore and nothing is able to escape hence turning into pimples. Yep, you’re right for a couple of years I have been noticing that my oil glands are producing more and more oil and clogged pores meant heaps of black and whiteheads~~ ewww.. I know… But it’s the truth. In terms of other causes of acne well puberty is the one we all know about (but I’m way past that stage now), genetics is another reason (if your close relatives were and are suffering severe acne then it’s likely that you would too), if you have sensitive skin then makeup or working in a greasy environment may be the causes. My dermo couldn’t figure out my exact cause but it probably has something to do with genetics and hormonal issues. (Below is a picture I took of the information pamphlet my doc gave me).

Ok, I’m no expert about this whole acne business but I’m still going through it now in my 20s because previous medical treatments in my teen years have delayed my acne fight till now…what a bummer~~~ just when you have to come out and face the world hahahhaaha

My Oratane treatment:

Just to be clear you can’t just start such strong medication for acne just coz you want to. You have to prove that you’ve tried all the other antibiotics and creams by your local GP before getting referred to a specialist. I’m not lying when I say that I was worried and nervous about starting this whole Oratane business (I really wanted it to go away on its own) coz there are a list of side effects to worry about. I was on some antibiotics which weren’t working anymore against acne, and had to immediately stop taking them before starting my Oratane treatment (because the clash of the two will make your brain swell~~~), blood tests had to be done prior to starting the Oratane as well to see if you have liver problems, cholesterol issues and other major health problems and your BMI has to be within the healthy level too. One thing to remember is that once you start the meds the acne actually gets worse before it gets better… so the 1st few weeks may be difficult with all the sudden breakouts.

Side effects of Oratane:

Oratane works by reducing the amount of oils being produced by the oil glands which in turn reduces the amount of bacteria in the skin that causes acne. Hence, the first side effect everyone will experience is dryness everywhere in the body…and I mean everywhere (so moisturizing is terribly important). Your skin will also be sun sensitive (which is bothersome coz Summer is coming~~~) which means sun protection is crucial. Oratane may cause joints and muscles in the body to be in pain and you may experience a degree of tiredness as well. Pregnant ladies or women planning to be pregnant shouldn’t take this medication because it cause irreversible birth defects, and you cannot get pregnant immediately after your treatment until you pass a period of time where the levels of Oratane has completely left your body. There are also certain skin conditions or infections to consider, most with Asian complexion are born or prone to suffering from eczema and the Oratane can aggravate that condition and cause it to come back. That means you will have to treat for eczema and acne at the same time. My recent episode of allergic reaction (previous post) was caused by taking a higher dose of Oratane where I was covered in red and extremely itchy spots from head to toe (scary huh?). I had severe eczema as a child and the medication just made it all come back 100 times worse.

WARNING: Gross pics below!!! But it's great for contrast and if it's helped ppl like me gain my confidence back then it's the results that really tell the story (doesn't have to be flawless/ perfect BTW). This dude was photographed for the pamphlet I got given.

Ok I know the above might have scared you all… especially when I had to go through the ordeal of an allergic reaction (biopsy included to find out the cause sighZ~~~). But I’m back at it, just started my Oratane again at the lower dose which I know I have no problems with and probably won’t increase my dosage but instead stay on the treatment for longer …probably 6months to ensure nothing shocking happens again. I still have acne popping up here and there when I’m on the medicine and I don’t expect it to be gone in an instant but my previous bad habits of picking and popping the acne has caused heaps of scarring which will hopefully fade over time. My specialist did a procedure to pop my cystic acne so they won’t grow back in the same areas again (and they haven’t YAY). But it really should be done by the pros coz they know best.

Current skin condition:

Currently, while taking the Oratane…my skin has definitely dried up heaps than before not as oily as it used to be. My black and whiteheads have almost all disappeared leaving behind… my opened pores (I’ve always had clogged pores which meant it kept my pores big bleh~~~). I do get red easily if the water temperature is too warm and if the sun is directly hitting my face. My lips are especially dry and seem to crack easily if I don’t constantly apply lipbalm. I still have scaring and a couple of acne areas but the areas are shrinking which means most of the pimples have disappeared leaving behind smooth areas of skin (much better than the bumpy feeling of acne prone skin). Below is my current skin condition, prone to redness once I'm outta the shower with heaps of scars and during the day lightly covered with BBcream (only a lil there is no need for any concealer or heavy coverage). Scars can still be seen through the BBcream but honestly I don't care hahaahaaha coz it's looking heaps better than what it was before TRUST ME!!! It'll only get better from here on since I have ages to go in my treatment YAY!!!

Following from this long acne lecture with my personal experience included…I may now move onto my skincare routine which has completely changed and for good reasons coz my skin has become super sensitive and there shouldn’t be anything used on the surface to make the skin worse and prevent the medication from working within your body. Will tell you all about the restrictions to skincare and makeup if you're like me and on strong acne treatment.'

Click here for more information about acne or the Oratane treatment and ALWAYS consult your GP to see if you've exhausted all your options (including trying antibiotics for an extended amount of time) before considering the Accutane/Roaccutane like treatment.

Sorry about the word heavy post…hope it’s helpful in some way. And will keep you all updated on my acne journey hope nothing else goes wrong and I can stay on course now...

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