September 30, 2013

the big bad wolf sale 2013

Hear ye! Hear ye! Captain Wolfie and his team of high sea scallywags is back and this time, with a rumours of three million books planned for in the read-seas!

Arrr me mateys, the Big Bad Wolf sale will be held from Friday, 6th December to Sunday, 15th December 2013 at the Malaysia International Exhibition and Convention Centre {MIECC} in Sri Kembangan.

For more information, stalk the seven seas if yer must but be sure to set yer headin' and land yer ship at the captain's Blog, Facebook or Twitter page for more information. Arrr!

September 21, 2013

what I think of men who use CK Encounter

Finally! After a week tooth-drama, I am able to think straight and write a proper sentence without wanting to run to the kitchen and stick my cheeks to the freezer walls. So today, I thought I'd do a write-up as my try-my-luck entry for a whopping bottle of CK Encounter and by whopping I mean 185ml whopping. It's sort of a "contest" open to TheLilacBloggers as part of yet another exciting initiative between TheLilacBox and Luxasia Malaysia.

Initially I thought I'd drive me and my nose to the nearest Calvin Klein counter to take in a good whiff of it and take it from there. But then being caught in a jam can pretty much screw up your plans, especially if you have portable technology with you {cough! iPad! cough!} and in it happens to be the CK Encounter ad featuring Alexander Skarsgård and Lara Stone.

After scrutinizing the photo and the video, while being stuck in a jam - that was that. I was utterly convinced that Ian Somerhalder looked better on it. Sorry Skarsgård fans around the world, but I am a chick who loves her Fifty Shades and believes Hollywood just recently murdered the very epitome of masculinity ala Fifty Shades by casting someone who isn't Ian Somerhalder.

How did getting caught in a traffic jam on the way to take a whiff off a bottle of fragrance morph into Fifty Shades, you ask? Simple really - being disappointed with Hollywood the past two weeks while listening to "The Flower Duet" by Charlotte Church which incidentally is a song off Fifty Shades then viewing a gray-ish hued CK Encounter ad with the tagline "... story of unresolved tension and desire; a man who knows what he wants and remains in control ... the mystery unfolds with infinite possibilities." - the Fifty Shades & Christian Grey light bulb in a million gigawatt bulb just lights up on top of my noggin' and etches itself even more permanently on my sub-cranium!

Sorry guys, I truly am. I tried really hard avoiding mashing anything FSOG into this writeup but as you can read by now, I failed and miserably so. I just can't get it out of my system! Oh well, I figured I might as well continue writing since it would only go two ways - you'd either be tied up in knotted fury or be tickled fancy by it.

Right. Let's get back to my "endeavoring-to-be-absolutely-honest pre-review write up" of what I think of men who use CK Encounter, shall we? So I was on my way to the Calvin Klein counter to take a good whiff of the fragrance and grope at the bottle a bit. When I finally got to my destination, I asked to test the fragrance and the SA happily obliged by directing me to a sleek bluish-black hued bottle. It's not a bottle I'd pick up for the husband on normal days but today, it did intrigued me.

CK Encounter is indeed a handsome bottle, even underneath the eeky lighting of the departmental store. Crafted from pretty high-quality, heavy-weighted glass in a unique prism-ed design, the deep blue almost black hue of the glass creates a sleek  and luxurious overall feel to the fragrance. The design is further complimented with gunmetal detailing underneath the cap. It's simple yet understated but bold and rich at the same time. Just looking at the bottle made me want to have sniffing go at it but before that, I thought why not read what CK describes the fragrance as first and see if it comes off the same?
So according to Calvin Klein, CK Encounter is ...
"... an addictive blend of crisp spice, warm cognac and sensual woods; a contrast of freshness and warmth ... a distinctive expression of unapologetic masculinity."
Wait, unapologetic masculinity?! What on earth is unapologetic masculinity and why on earth would a man apologize for being masculine ... isn't being masculine one of men's mission in life? Well, with that thought in mind I took a whiff off the tester strip and it sort of fell into place. I got where Firmenich perfumers Honorine Blanc and Pierre Negrin was going with this fragrance, although in my opinion the words "unapologetic masculinity" was probably not in the best to describe it but yeah, I get it - the whole "... so the dude's all tough and masculine but he ain't gonna apologize for it!" sort of thingy. 

Moving on.

CK Encounter is designed with top notes of mandarin, aromatic cardamom and rum; middle notes of pepper, Egyptian jasmine, patchouli and cognac at its core and settling down to woody bottom notes of with the likes of agarwood, atlas cedar wood and musk, it would seem like the designers are trying to get us gals headily drunk before we can get anywhere near a guy who wears CK Encounter.

However, CK Encounter for me started off citrusy as with most CK perfumes but this mellows down into something cool yet spicy, no doubt from a mix of cardamom, pepper and of course the rum and cognac. After that, sweet woody warm note takes over but with a subtle hint of something herbal and green - most probably from the patchouli.

So there ... the bottle and the fragrance and now the verdict and I'll be honest. CK Encounter is not an overly original scent but you do have to give credit to the designers for daring to inject some subtle "oomphs" into it and by doing so, stamping the phrase "masculine!" all over it. If I were to rate this fragrance from experience alone,  I'd put CK Encounter right smack the middle between the super-obnoxious Spicebomb by Viktor&Rolf {tween scent!} and overly-sophisticated and potent Antaeus by Chanel {over forties scent!} ... and probably a few notches after the husband's current fragrance - Boss by Hugo {twenties scent!}, to which I think he has grown a tad too old mature for.

Having said that, CK Encounter to me is also not a daytime kind of fragrance. It is a masculine, rich, quite heavy bodied and sexy fragrance that is designed for the night when the air is cooler and possibilities are infinite. It is for a man who has achieved, is bold and passionate about life; a man who is poised and confident, knows what he wants in life and knows how to get it ... kind of like Christian Grey. Sorry, I just could not resist.

Anyhow, if you're having difficulties understanding my blabberings and some more, perhaps these images might help you understand better of what I think of men who wears CK Encounter embodies.


Imagine the evening air is cool and crisp and a couple is having a private candlelit dinner with a bottle of 1999 Bollinger Grande Année Rosé ... set all that at the very top of of the Space Needle. Then end the evening with a black Audi R8 Spyder roaring through downtown into the city's most prestigious residence and the elevator doors open with direct access to the penthouse. Now, dim the lights down and allow your imagination to roam wild. "Oh la la, mon dieu!" - Now, that is what I think of men who use CK Encounter ... vous l'a dit :-p






30ML - RRP RM152
50ML - RRP RM230
100ML - RRP RM314
100ML - RRP RM212
200ML - RRP RM113

September 20, 2013

writing - chapter 1

Continuing from last week, here is the second part of my little experiment. I am having some problems coming up with a name for the lead female character; it seems all the nice names are taken ... either that or I am extremely picky. Hmm ...

I know the main storyline isn't the most original - it is loosely inspired and based off books like Sex In The City, The Devil Wears Prada, Confessions Of A Shopaholic and of course, the Fifty Shades series plus a few others in between - sort of like a mash up. I am hoping to compensate the lack of originality by approaching it with my style of writing which is where you guys comes in!

As always, I would love to hear your feedback and comments ... pretty much what you think, in general or in detail or whatever pops into your mind. Thanks for your time!

September 18, 2013

wake me up when september ends ... really.

We're only eighteen days into September and so far, I absolutely hate it. After just recovering from two weeks of sleepless nights due to a tickly-throat inducing cough {the cure and I kid you not: a generous slather of Vicks Vaporub on both soles of your feet and pull on a pair of socks!}, the mother of all pain and discomfort happened - I chipped the first bottom molar while eating out last weekend and it resulted in a fracture all the way down to the nerves.

The last three days, my bottom jaw it seemed had a mind of its own ... switching the throbbing-jaw-numbing-pain-switch on and off like a kid in the candy store. Just when I was about to finally get some rest, wham! ... the throbbing pain comes on. Sigh.

Swallowing 200mg of Ibuprofen every four hours and brushing my teeth with Colgate Pro-Sensitive Enamel Repair after every meal helped a little and gave me some reprieve. It did stop me wanting to murder anyone who came into my path but my lower left jaw was still uncomfortable - very.

I finally managed a dental appointment at 8am this morning {thanks to the Malaysia Day holiday}, had my molar filed down and the fracture filled. I'm also on five days of superdosed anti-biotics. The throbbing pain is still there but it's not as bad ... probably about thirty percent less.

For now, I'm just hoping my nerve endings doesn't start to deteriorate and die because that would mean I'd either need a root canal or worse, an extraction. Double sigh. I guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it but until then ... can someone please tell me how much longer this jaw-throbbing ache is going to continue?

If you're in a similar predicament and are in need of a good yet gentle handed dentist from Ipoh, do give Dr. Joseph Lim or TC Lim a call at 05-546 6472. His clinic is located in Fair Park and he'll be there from 7am to about 10am-ish. After that, he'll be in town - best to call and make an appointment.

... ps: I'll be taking a few days off blogging until I can concentrate writing again. Writing these few paragraphs actually took me two very long hours. *bleep!* toothache!

September 14, 2013

anna sui mousse eyeshadow

Anna Sui's Black Veil 2012 Holiday cosmetic collection is all about black lace and shimmers so when I purchased the limited edition makeup kit in 01 Seductive Spell at the Luxasia Malaysia Sale a few months back, it didn't surprise me at all that the mousse eyeshadow shone as bright as a lit up disco ball.

Packaged in a heavy sleek glass jar with a screw-on black plastic cap printed with Anna Sui's signature roses which is background-lined with a hint of lace - it took me quite a long while, like two months to build up enough courage to wear this shade anywhere. I was hesitant because I wanted to love Anna Sui's makeup as much as I loved her Secret Wish perfume but was worried I might end up hating it because well ... it was pink and had shimmers in it.

Before I hand you my verdict, let me give you a 101 to Anna Sui's 2012 Black Veil limited edition makeup kits. Yup, you read right - it's plural. Fact is, there are two kits; 01 Seductive Spell which is pink hued and 02 Alluring Charm which is purple hued.

I went with the first kit because it was warmer in tone compared to the latter which was cooler, eventhough I had severe reservations about the blush which is a really bright shade of pink, if not almost fuschia and I am not a girl who would buy fuschia in a blush ... ever. But oh well, it was on sale and the crazy in me won so 01 Seductive Spell with the almost-fuschia blush went home with me.

Now that you know that this makeup kit is all about pink ... like me, you would be expecting a shimmery pink eyeshadow, right? Like me, you'd be wrong too - the Anna Sui Mousse Eyeshadow E in 01 or Sparkling Pink actually shows up light pinkish-brown in the glass jar but turns into a warm shade of sparkly champagne tinged with copper when applied onto my skin. It's quite a surprisingly natural and flattering colour on my lids - minus the sparklies but once blended in, it wasn't very obvious and looked more like I had dewy lids or something along those lines. I suck at makeup terminology.

I like that the formula is gel-based and spreads evenly. It even has a cooling sensation and dries relatively quick. The colour lasts up to four hours on my oily lids, unprimed and I suspect it would longer if I took the time to prime my lids. The only downside to this formula though is that you have to be careful not to apply too much because the shimmer tends to migrate all over if you accidentally touch or worse, rub your eyes ... it will go everywhere and your face might shine in all the wrong places.

Other than that, it wasn't a bad buy at all for RM40 during the sale. The entire set also included the almost-fuschia blush or in Anna Sui terms; the Cheek Color E in Rose Red - which I will write about later, the Lip Gloss E in Brilliant Red and a black lace clutch.

Did you manage to haul this during the Luxasia Malaysia sale ... how did you find it?

September 13, 2013

writing - your comments and feedback needed

Not a typical "Creative Friday!" sort of post but I have been working on a little something the last couple of months, thanks to an overload of Sophie Kinsella, Lauren Weisberger, EL James and whoever else is on my bookshelf. Now, I'm suffering from what an actual author would call "a writer's block".

However, I am no author - good grief no but I like writing and thought I'd give it a whirl and see how it goes and where it leads me. So, here's a little excerpt of what I'm working on and I would love to hear your feedback and comments ... pretty much what you think, in general or in detail or whatever pops into your mind. I've got a little more than what's written below but thought I'd post this to test the waters first.

September 11, 2013

dior addict lipstick nr. 643 diablotine

A fortnight ago, I stopped by the Dior counter looking to stock up on Dior Addict Extrême lipstick in Silhouette nr. 339 since its worked out well for me but then I strayed and came home with the new Dior Addict in Diablotine nr. 643 instead.

I was initially a little hesitant about the purchase because I've read reviews about the Addict line being less moisturizing and less pigmented compared to the Addict Extrêmes but the colour was oh so pretty and I was getting a little bored with my current Addict Extrême colour ... the inevitable "Oh, what-the-heck!" moment happened.

Packaging wise, they are pretty much similar; other than the difference in casing colour. The Dior Addict Extrême is bluish-black while the Dior Addict is transparent silver. Both attract fingerprints like ants are to sugar although the Dior Addict Extrême shows it much more prominently due to its darker shade.

When it comes to colour, the Dior Addict in Diablotine is essentially coral hued. If you compare that to the Dior Addict Extrême in Silhouette, Diablotine is slightly darker leaning towards red than coral.

The Dior Addict Extrême line also boasts much more pigmentation than the original Addict but I think that also depends on the colour you select. I did a one swipe swatch below and found Dior Addict Extrême in Silhouette to be quite sheer while Dior Addict is Diablotine looked slightly more opaque.

Both formula glides on creamy without tugging and settles comfortably but while Silhouette has a hint of subtle sheen and translucency that makes the lips look simply lush thanks to its "extrême" formula, Diablotine tends to look little "matte" on my lips. Having said that, I will usually swipe a light coating of Dior Lip Maximizer before application and I'm good to go unlike the Dior Addict Extrême in Silhouette which is good on its own.

Hydration wise, Diablotine does not dry out my lips but when it comes to finishing, I quite prefer my Dior Addict Extrême in Silhouette over Dior Addict in Diablotine. However, colour wise I quite like Diablotine over Silhouette ... if only Dior could just create an Addict Extrême in the exact shade as Diablotine in the current Addict line, I'd be in lipstick heaven.

If you're rolling your eyes at me and screaming, "... but Diablotine is available in Addict Extrême, woman!". Well, you're right but the Diablotine in Addict Extrême comes off little too red on me compared to Diablotine in Addict due to its "extrême" formula and pigmentation. Let's just say I am not quite that adventurous yet in going "red' to the office just yet.

As with my previous review on the Dior Addict Extrême in Silhouette, these too are not long wearing lipsticks. You will need to reapply - especially after a meal, otherwise the colour clocks in pretty good at the three hour mark but hydration wise for me is about two before I need a think swipe of my Dior Lip Maximizer.

What about you - are you an Addict or Addict Extrême kinda gal?


September 10, 2013

REN moroccan rose otto body wash & bath oil - a fantastic nerve detangling duo for an exhausted and sick mama on holiday

Last weekend, the family was in Penang - I was expecting a lot of heat and a lot of sand. Well ... we got a lot of sand but instead of heat, we got rain - and a lot of it.

The kids were stuck indoors most of the time and this mama was exhausted! Being sick didn't help either so I busted out the REN Moroccan Rose Otto Body Wash and Bath Oil duo which I got a couple of months back at the Lilac Encounter with REN at Kens Apothecary - boy, was I glad I brought them with me because this duo did wonders to my stressed out nerves and achy bits.

A quick lather with the body wash in the warm shower and a fifteen minute soak in a full tub of warm water mixed with a few drops of bath oil not only untangled my nerves, it also left my skin surprisingly soft and moisturised. There was also subtle hint of fragrance left on my skin but that only lasted about half an hour or so on me.

Now ... I love roses and I have quite a collection of rose-y bath and beauty products but when it comes to actually smelling like a rose, unfortunately the REN Moroccan Rose Otto don't quite cut it for me because it reminds me too much of our Malaysian teh ros or rose tea you get at the local mamak but other than the scent, they are not bad products to have around especially when your nerves are all frayed and tangled up in a knot.

BODY WASH NRP RM109 { 200ML }; BATH OIL NRP RM159 { 110ML }

September 6, 2013

creative friday! feathers galore from lia griffith

With an exceptionally crazy report season looming, I decided that my very blend cubicle needed some colours and chic injected into it to keep me sane in the coming months. So, as always I ventured into my Lia Griffith folder {yes, she has a permanent folder in my pendrive} and decided to do feathers ... out of paper. A conundrum, I know but it's true - feathers out of paper or as she calls it, paper feathers.

I decided to follow her colour scheme of blue, teal and turquoise and printed her template out on three different coloured papers, snipped and trimmed away with a pair scissors during lunch and voila! Très très chic papiere plumes en bleu, turquoise et teal.

But I have to admit, the place where I added the feathers to isn't what I would term très chic but it does add a splash of colour to my view and since I face the monitor most of the time, I figured it would be as good a place as any.

Lia's instructions are really simple to follow, as you can see from her picture guide below so until next Friday, I hope you've been inspired!


September 3, 2013

fifty shades of grey gone absolutely wrong

So I guess you've heard. Hollywood had done it again; they have murdered another highly anticipated movie even before its hit theatres. The much awaited roles of Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele have finally been filled and well, I am disappointed.

Actually, disappointed is a huge understatement.

In the book, Christian Trevelyan Grey is 27 years old with unruly dark copper-colored hair and intense, bright gray eyes that are as chameleon as his moods and facial expressions. Since news hit that Fifty Shades of Grey was going to be adapted for the big screen, fans have been pushing for Ian Somerhalder to play Christian Grey and I can understand why and actually relate - he has the messy hair, the smoldering eyes and the overall mysterious look that is just well ... very Christian.

I wouldn't be this disappointed if they cast Alex Pettyfer or Chase Crawford. Heck, I don't even quite mind Chris Pine or even Zac Efron ... maybe not Zac Efron but then Hollywood decided on Charlie Hunnam.

So, he's not a total lost but it is quite difficult imagining him as the BDSM Christian and there was only one photo I could find of him that resembled just a smidgen of Christian; one of Charlie in a white suit looking out a cafe window and that's about it. Every other photo of him online is just well ... not very Christian-like. I think he'd make a good Elliot - Christian's older brother.

Then there's Anastasia Rose Steele, a slender petite younge women fresh out of college with long dark chestnut-coloured hair and powder blue eyes with an upturned nose and soft full lips. When it comes to fashion, she's more of a tee-shirt and Converse sort of gal - sort of like Lucy Hale which I picture as Anna when I read the books ...

... but then Hollywood casts Dakota Johnson, daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith. I managed to find one photo of her as a brunette and well, it's not a really fitting colour for her but oh well ... there's always Hollywood magic, right?

Come to think of it, she'd make a good Kate who is Anna's best friend.

I'm sure Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson are great actors but physically and feature wise, they are just wrong for their respective roles - kind of like how Robert Pattinson {and I'll probably get a lot of hate comments for writing this}  is wrong as Edward Cullen and Kirsten Stewart ... well, let's just say Bella is much more animated in the book than Kirsten was as Bella in the movie. Seriously Hollywood - has the LA smog clouded your judgement?

OK, rant over. So, will I go watch Fifty Shades of Grey when it hit theatres 1 August next year? Most likely not - I think I'll wait for it on DVD then get that so I can rant infront of my Mac {... hopefully} on how wrong Hollywood was in the comfort of my home, in PJs and most likely with my girlfriends who at this very moment feels the same way as I do.

What do you think ... did Hollywood botch it up for the fans or did they do good with the book?

September 1, 2013

happy birthday darling boy!

The sunshine of your smile could melt the coldest of heart;
You brighten up the worst of days even when we're apart.
Those little arms that hug our necks won't be little for very long;
Because you're growing up so quickly now and today you're turning one.
So I'll take your hugs and kisses now for the day will soon be here;
When you'll think you're far too old for me to kiss and hold you near.

Happy Birthday, darling boy.

With love,
Papa & Mama.