Dermalogica Medibac – Overnight Clearing Gel

Hi All! Sorry for the long hiatus… Been too busy at work that’s why!

Anyways! Recently I have been facing pimply skin, especially on my jawline (sobs!). So I went for a Dermalogica facial in JB 3 weeks ago, and the esthetician informed me that my moisturiser (Skin Smoothing Cream) is actually not suitable for me! 😦 Apparently it was too “nutritious” for me and my skin has been reacting against it, thus all the pimples are sprouting out like mushrooms along my jawline. So she asked me to try out a clear gel lotion from the Dermalogica Medibac’s range, called Overnight Clearing Gel.

Taken from the Dermalogica site – MediBac Overnight Clearing Gel is an overnight treatment that helps clear skin, calm inflammation and prevents future breakouts by reducing excess sebum and impaction plugs that contribute to congestion. To use, apply a thin layer all over cleansed face and allow to absorb. Key ingredients are Salicylic Acid, Tea Tree Oil and Rosemary extracts, which are effective to alleviate acne problems!

This small bottle has been a miracle to me! I have been using it for three weeks and voila! Clearer skin with lesser pimples and even my colleagues has been commenting that my face has improved! I have this habit of touching my face and trying to squeeze out the easy whiteheads and blackheads (some difficult ones oso I would!) 😦 *Horror!* Anyways, it is a big NO NO to touch your face because bacteria may enter/form under your skin and pus to build up as the infection grows. Our body will react by attacking the bacteria with white blood cells and resulted in redness, inflammation and sometimes pain. So never, ever let your hands touch your face unnecessarily! Let your esthetician take proper care of your skin (they have all the sufficient equipments to kill bacteria after extraction).

For best results, use it together with Oil Control Lotion for day time. When I bought my the Overnight Clearing Gel, the esthetician gave me the Oil Control Lotion for sample purposes and the combination of day and night usage works the best for me! I have ordered mine from Mizspa.com (present from my good friend yeay!) and can’t wait to use it since the sample is almost gone.

I would really recommend to anyone who is facing adult acne problems to try out the Dermalogica Medibac range because it really works for me! Dermalogica is pricey, but effective. Btw, the small bottle cost RM188.10 (Full price is RM198, with 5% discount). Let me know if you have any thoughts on this!

-Qi Hua-

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Product Review – Dermalogica Ultra-calming range

Hi there! I have promised to do a product review on my skincare routine so I will start with the Dermalogica Ultra-calming range! Let me begin with an introduction to Dermalogica’s history behind it.. taken from the Dermalogica USA site..

  • While the Dermalogica story begins in 1986, the force of change in the industry started in Los Angeles, circa 1983. Jane Wurwand, a tenured, United Kingdom-trained skin therapist new to the American “esthetician” industry, recognized that continuing skin and body therapy education was practically non-existent in the United States.
  • Jane put her education in action, opening a small classroom in Marina del Rey, California under the name The International Dermal Institute (IDI). She invited licensed skin therapists to get hands-on with the postgraduate training so critical to making them competitive in the business. Today, IDI is considered the international gold-standard for postgraduate skin and body therapy training with over 40 locations worldwide.
  • While teaching at IDI, it didn’t take long for Jane to realize no product line embraced her belief of skin health as opposed to “beauty,” so she developed her own. And in 1986, Dermalogica was born. The vision was clear – a product line free of common irritants and ingredients that could cause breakouts (including lanolin, SD alcohol, mineral oil, artificial colors and fragrances) that would improve skin health, and were only available from qualified skin therapy professionals trained at The International Dermal Institute.

So that was the history behind the famous brand… so lets go straight to the product, shall we?

This is the set that I have been using for the last three months, introduced by an esthetician in Dermalogica salon in East Coast Mall. It consist of the following:-

  • UltraCalming Cleanser – 50ml
  • UltraCalming Mist – 50ml
  • UltraCalming Relief Masque – 15ml
  • Barrier Repair – 10ml
  • UltraCalming Serum Concentrate – 10ml

Firstly, I will use the UltraCalming Cleanser, it looks like a milky white cream, and when you spread and massage across your face, it is like applying cream on your face that also cleanses! It doesn’t foam up, thus when you rinse your face with water, it doesn’t have the drying effect. Perfect for my skin because I have a dry surface and oily on the insides.

After drying my face with a towel, I will spray on the UltraCalming Mist, just 4 pumps will do. It is a very soothing sort of toner that moisturises your face, while preparing for the next step. In the morning, I will use the Barrier Repair as it helps to “fortify sensitized skin and damaged skin barrier”. As you can see, it is colourless and when applied on skin, it feels velvety smooth, well, abit silicone feel to it. It is actually a moisturiser as well, but I felt it is not sufficient for my dry surface skin. So I will add on a moisturiser, Skin Smoothing Cream. The moisturiser smells heavenly though it says no fragrance!

At night, I will repeat the steps for cleanser and mist but I will replace Barrier Repair with the UltraCalming Serum Concentrate. It is a super-concentrated serum that helps calm, restore and defend sensitized skin, which contains Oats extract (very good for sensitive skin). For me, this is quite oily, so I can’t use moisturiser together with the serum.

Lastly, twice a week especially after facials, I will use the UltraCalming Relief Masque to calm and soothe my irritated skin after extraction. A very light-weight masque, it helps to reduce the redness and relieve the itch that I feel.

One set of this can last me for a good two months (except the cleanser, it finished after the first month!). According to the esthetician, my face has been less sensitive already, especially after extraction, I normally turn red and looked bloated! Thus I will continue using this set until my face have improved to normal skin. I can’t really remember how much I paid for this set in the salon but it should be around RM170 (all Dermalogica salons offer 5% discount, don’t forget to ask for it!). Since then, I have found genuine and cheaper Dermalogica products online, and currently I’m buying from this site called MizSpa and it costs around RM130 only! Unfortunately they don’t have a great range of products, unlike Strawberrynet, so I sometimes do browse on Strawberrynet as well. Anyways, for anyone who have sensitive skin (goes red under the sun, while playing sports or even just laughing) should try this set. 🙂 Let me know your reviews on it too!

-Qi Hua-

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Khareyana Spa – Serenity at its best…

It was my birthday last weekend, and me and my sister was treated to a spa as a lovely birthday present! 🙂 The place is named Khareyana Spa, located near Assunta Hospital (if you are on Federal Highway, just exit Jln Templar and you will be on the right track!). Khareyana Spa stands at a bungalow house spot, where from the outside, it gives me a rustic, village-y feel and when you enter the spa, you are immediately transformed into a tranquil, relaxing place.

View outside my room

We was immediately brought to a room where we was briefly informed by the masseuse about our package, which is called the Special Package Option 3. The package includes:-

  1.  Spa or Body Treatment
  2. Hair Cream Bath and Scalp Treatment
  3. Manicure & Pedicure or a Facial

So I choosed Spa Treatment, Hair Cream Bath and Scalp Treatment (this one no choice actly, but would totally recommend this!) and finally a facial.  First they asked me to choose a scrub among the four scents they have (Frangipani, Sandalwood, Rose and Lavendar Mint) – I choosed the Rose Scrub. Sis choosed Frangipani. Soon after that,  we were directed to our room by one of the masseuse (my bad for not asking her name!) and was asked to change into towels while they start preparing for the treatment.

This is where all the “action” take place! 🙂

Two masseuse came in after 10 minutes and started the spa treatment. Process for all the Signature Spa treatments are body scrub, shower, steam, body massage,body mask, herbal bath and body lotion application. What I like about the scrub was the masseuse is being very very detail. They scrub and scrub and scrub … for about an hour or more! I thought my skin would feel sore, but surprisingly I didn’t, and so did sis! After the scrub, they put a body mask all over our body and we rested for a good 10 mins before sis was led to the shower room to shower first, and me second. Had to take turn because there is only one shower room and one portable steam machine.

When I stepped in the shower, I almost slipped. The masseuse was holding my hand and informed me that this is normal, because they scrubbed my feet as well and the scrub is very moisturising (thus slippery!). As I showered, I can’t help feeling my skin feels the softest and smoothest ever!

Shower room… its a beauty, ain’t it?

After that, I was led to the steam machine (sis used it earlier) and was in it for a good 20 mins. The heat was moderately hot and I was able to withstand it. Sis said she would prefer it hotter but I guess maybe the machine was not properly warmed up then as she had used it first.

When I was done with the steam machine, the masseuse led us back to the massage table again, and this is the time for the massage that I have been longing for. The masseuse was very skillful, she knows how to correct my “urat” or nerves without much pain. She traced an “urat” from the feet up to the waist and I can feel it bounce back into place! Instead of feeling the normal pain, I actually felt totally relaxed and at ease. The best part was when she started kneading on my back, because she took extra effort to make sure all muscles are properly taken care of! Just when you think she is done with your back, and there she goes again, kneading every single muscle and make all the tension melts. I feel like I’m in heaven!!! 😛

When the massage was over (I was already so relaxed but could still use more on the back hehe), they have already prepared a flower bath for us (separately, of course!) and we soaked ourselves for a further 15 mins in it. I was playing with the petals, rubbing it against my skin. Feels like those ancient princesses taking baths with flowers haha… I was told to shower after the bath and was given lotion to apply on my body after that.

Aftermath of the bubblicious flower bath!

When me and sis are finally done, they led us to the main room for the Hair Cream Bath and Scalp Treatment. We were seated by dressing table… I was immediately brought to rinse my hair while sis was enjoying her ginger tea and watermelons (btw, the ginger tea was the BEST I had ever tasted! We had 2 refills hehe) Had to take turns because there were only one wash basin. The same masseuse gave me a choice hair treatment between ginseng and aloe, or a combination of it – said it was good to prevent hairfall and moisturising respectively. So I choosed a combination of it and she starts the treatment. Ohhhhh pure bliss again… she massaged my scalp, slowly moving from the outer forehead towards the middle of the back of my head, not missing any part of my whole head. I swear I immediately fell to sleep to the rhythmic kneading on my head! She moved on to my shoulders and I woke up for abit because of the change of the pressure. Once again, she massaged my shoulders and previously I mentioned I could use more rite, and so here she goes. Even writing it now, I can still remember how relaxed and ease I was at that time. Finally after a good hour of massage, she put me on the steamer for my hair treatment for about 10 mins and I was brought to rinse again.

The next treatment was facial. Sis told me that the manicure and pedicure was recommended according to the many reviews she read, but I just had it yesterday so I didn’t take it. I was brought to a room, where the same lady that gave sis her massage asked me to lie face front and immediately started with cleansing and scrubbing my face. She was cleansing my face with a sponge, which I felt it was overdone as she rubbed my face at least 4 times on the same area. Surprisingly, during extraction I fell asleep despite all the pain I was going through. Maybe I was already too relaxed to feel any pain on my face hehe. Most part of the facial I was asleep, woke up for abit and slept right back so all I remember after extraction was cleansing of my face again and a mask was put on my face.

The lady woke me up while she was cleansing of the mask from my face. I woke up, very groggily and when she was done with cleansing (overdone with the sponge again here) and quickly changed. I had to pee (very badly! – I actually had to pee in between the first and second treatment too!) and I believe it is a sign of a good massage as it makes my blood flow and lymph stimulated thus toxins are being rinsed out of my body.

I walked out to find sis chatting to the owner, Pn Azam of Khareyana Spa. She is a very friendly lady and likes to smiles alot. She gave me and sis each a bottle of Martha Tilaar lotion, as a birthday gift! She mentioned that her husband’s birthday is also today so that was actually a very special day for her hehe. Ohh yeaa, she did say the flower petals in the bath is actually specially prepared for us as it was our birthday! 🙂 🙂 🙂 What a sweet lady!

Birthday present from the owner! Yeay!

In conclusion, I spent a good 7 hours in this spa… am truly impressed by… well, almost everything in this place! The masseuses are very well-trained, no-nonsense and straight to the job. The architecture is incredible and who had known there is a little haven in this area of PJ! Would totally recommend everyone to try this spa (not the facial though and men are allowed with their spouses though) and I would have to say this wouldn’t be my last visit! 🙂 – Visit http://www.khareyana.com/ for more details!

-Qi Hua-

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Basic Skincare Regime – and why should we follow it?

Well. Who doesn’t want healthy, glowing skin? While some people are blessed with flawless skin, most of us who are not (including me!), are willing to try almost anything to keep our face spotless and radiant. So before we go in depth into what products to use, I would like talk about basic skincare regime that we all should be following.

Cleansing

The first step in the basic skincare regime is cleansing. It is the easiest one in all the steps and most people follow it quite easily. However, what you might not know is you could also under-cleanse or over-cleanse your face! I would recommend to wash your face twice a day, morning when you wake up, and night before you go to bed. Over-cleansing it will make your skin dry as it strips of the natural oil from your face and signals your oil glands to double up its production to restore your skin moisture! My beautician told me that I have normal-oily face and advised me to double cleanse my face with the same cleanser, but IMHO it makes my skin flaky! It was sometime ago, and ever since then I have changed my products that suits my skin better, and I will blog in the next few posts 🙂

Exfoliate

Exfoliation refers to the removal of dead skin cells from the surface of the skin, revealing the healthy skin underneath. This is a very important step that most people are not aware of, or even worse, skipped it knowingly! There are two ways of exfoliating your skin, through mechanical or chemical means. Mechanical exfoliants is the act of physically scrubbing on the skin with facial scrub with tiny grains… is the most common and cheapest methods. Chemical exfoliants are scrubs with containing salicylic acid, glycolic acid, fruit enzymes, etc that loosen the glue-like substance that holds the cells together, allowing them to ease away. I loved both methods, since the curious me have bought many many types of exfoliants (I will do the product reviews!) however most importantly is to start exfoliating your face! I would recommend  once a week, because over-exfoliating your skin would make them dry and flaky as well, and you don’t want that, don’t you? 🙂

Toning 

Toner is a liquid that helps to close the pores on your skin, to avoid attracting dirt and to give your skin a tighter, firmer look. However, avoid (at all cost!) toners with alcohol in it, as it will strip away all the oil on the surface, leaving your skin dry and irritated. Some experts say toners have no effects on your skin, but I would say give it a try first before making your mind up! I personally feel toner preps my skin for the next part of the regime and allows the moisturiser to fully absorbed into the skin.

Eye Cream & Moisturising

The skin around your eye contains no fatty tissue and therefore is very thin and susceptible to wrinkles. When fine lines begin to develop, moisturizing eye creams will give  plump, soften and refresh the area around your eyes and temporarily help hide those signs of aging. I have started using eye cream since I was 22 (broke but vain though haha) because I believe that the first signs of aging will be seen within the eye area and I swear by it ever since! Not to brag, but I pride myself by having no visible fine lines around my eye area and my beautician once commented that my eye area looks plump and healthy! 🙂

Next, moisturising your skin is an absolutely essential step of your skincare regimen. No matter how lazy you are, you need to slap on some moisturiser on your face! Moisturiser acts as the protective layer between your skin and factors like pollution, overexposure to sun, harmful effects of sun and wind, etc. Lack of moisturiser will speed up aging, especially for people with dry skin! (beware!) People with dry-normal skin can opt for creamier moisturiser and people with normal-oily skin should go for waterbase moisturiser.

Sun Protection

Ultraviolet radiation from sunlight can cause permanent damage to the skin, sagging skin when it loses elasticity and form wrinkles. That is why we need sun protection on our face! I never go out of the house without it (alright, sometimes I do :P) and at minimum I will put on a SPF 30 sunscreen. I know there are sunscreen as high 150SPF, but according to an American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) spokesman, James M. Spencer, MD., an SPF 15 product blocks about 94% of UVB rays, an SPF 30 product blocks 97% of UVB rays, and an SPF 45 product blocks about 98% of rays. Anything beyond that is just silly, as all sunscreen products may never guarantee 100% protection. I would recommend putting on at least a SPF 30 sunscreen protection before going out!

So, these are the few steps in a basic skincare regime that I have followed religiously. Stay clean, stay moisturised, stay sun-protected! Slowly I will be blogging on products that I use daily! 🙂 Stay tuned!

-Qi Hua-

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Hello World!

Hello there!

I’m Qi Hua and here I wanna write about my personal beauty tips and reviews, thoughts and other fun things I do!  I love make up, I have been crazy about skincare, I love experimenting different make-up techniques (though results mostly constrained to me, myself and I 🙂 ). I have always been reading other people’s blog on beauty stuff (ie; cosmetics, skincare, make-up, etc) and I thought to myself, “Hey I can do it too!”.

I am passionate about traveling and have been to many great and exotic places! I’m a big lover of the historical places, the more history the place have, the more I love to explore and find out on my own! Aside historical places, I heart heart HEART beautiful, scenic greeneries aka mountains, rivers, waterfalls, etc, which makes my heart pounds faster when I see it with my own eyes!

Other than that, I love playing squash.. it’s my all time sports! Been playing it since uni days but I was never good until I started working… Thanks to the patience of my friends for coaching the terrible me! 🙂 Been trying to pick up badminton as a secondary sport as it is a more popular sport as most of my friends play.

Ok, I shall quit blabbering! 🙂 I hope you enjoy reading my blog and if you have any questions, you can contact me at limqihua@gmail.com 🙂

-Qi Hua-

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