PCPH Planner Party

Image credits: @crafteedandee IG
Image credits: @crafteedandee IG

Last Saturday I attended my first ever planner meet, the Planner Community Philippines (PCPH) Planner Party! It was the first organized planner event by the admins and founders of PCPH.

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These wonderful ladies are Summer of Planners and Journals, Jujet of iamjujetscorner, Dandee of crafteedandee, and Chinky of lionachinky. They have worked very hard to organize this event and made it really successful! [I apologize for the photo quality, this was a shot of them introducing themselves at the start of the programme.]

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The planner party was held in Lasting Impressions, a massive crafting and scrapbooking store masquerading as a nondescript house. The walls of the event room are surrounded with works such as these, very impressive 12×12 scrapbook pages.

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Upon sitting down we were greeted with this tease, the PCPH Snag Bag that they have been releasing sneak peeks of! I could not wait to see what was inside!

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But first there was the programme, as I said. One of the first features was a Plan With Me demonstration by Chinky. If you follow her on Instagram you would know just how cute her spreads are. What you wouldn’t know is how funny and chatty she is in person! I definitely enjoyed seeing her make a spread, and it again left me in awe that some people are just so creative!

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Check out her final spread. She used a lot of the things in the Snag Bag such as the stickers to create this spread with the theme “Pastels”.

We had a short break where we were encouraged to try a selection of goodies prepared by Summer, who is actually a chef by profession! I was able to try out her savories, which were delicious! Along with snacks, we were also invited to try the puncher buffet, where we can borrow the PCPH girls’ collection of punchers. This was where I used the watercolored cardstock I prepared ahead of time! I really enjoyed playing with the punchers, and I am now trying to convince myself not to start another collection.

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The guest speaker was up next, and guess who it is? If you guessed Cynthia of the incredible IG account lovecynthia, then you are correct! She shared her story of how she started with her art, her moving to France, and general chitchat. She is funny and very inspiring!

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One of the highlights of the event was the planner stacking! With the help of a nice little shelf from Lasting Impressions, all the girls brought out their planners of all shapes and sizes to be included in this amazing photo. There is a good representation of the different types of planners; there are some Happy Planners, Filofaxes, Hobonichis, and traveler’s notebooks among others. It’s almost a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see this variety and amount of planners!

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I brought my trusty (and now super fat) Clock Sewdori, which nestled quite comfortably in the middle of the top row.

Image credits: @crafteedandee IG
Image credits: @crafteedandee IG

And of course, what is an event without a group photo? I loved meeting these wonderful girls, and enjoyed the afternoon quite immensely!

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I couldn’t wait to get home so I can check out the contents of the Snag Bag. Here they are in their complete glory! For a complete list of sponsors for the snag bag items, check out the very first photo of this post. I thought that this was quite worth the participation fee of Php1000!

Thanks so much again to the wonderful organizers of the PCPH Planner Party! I am definitely looking forward to the next planner meet!

Taking notes in the Project Vanity x Estee Lauder makeup workshop

A week ago I attended the Project Vanity x Estee Lauder makeup workshop hosted by Liz at her place. The makeup workshop was quite comprehensive, including both a guide to everyday skincare and a hands-on lesson on event-appropriate makeup. The model is the lovely Krissy of Krissyfied.

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There were a lot of great tips that Liz shared in the workshop, and I wanted to make sure I remember them. As I have my planner-wallet with me at all times, I grabbed it and took notes in the planner half! My TN in this case is my Macata TN in passport size. I’d like to show you the notes I took.

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The passport size is indeed a small size, but I find that it is enough space to take notes. The fact that it’s very portable and it is always with me ensures that I always have something to take notes in. I used my trusty Coleto to write with.

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I don’t really mind that it may not be as neat as notes taken in a bigger notebook, as long as my notes are clear and understandable. A new thing I’ve tried recently is putting rough sketches in my notes, and I think it looks understandable given how quickly I sketched them out.

Check out the gallery below to see more photos of the workshop.

I hope you enjoyed looking at my notes, and big big thanks to Liz and Estee Lauder!

Tuscany at McKinley Hill’s Summer Art Sessions

Summer is the time for workshops and not just for kids! Tuscany at McKinley Hill’s Summer Art Sessions, in partnership with Manila Workshops, is a weekend arts and crafts workshop series happening every Sunday beginning April 19 (this weekend!) and will run until May 10. Sessions are 1PM to 5PM. These workshops are for anyone who’s into arts and crafts, or who’d like to get started on them. They will be conducted by some of Manila’s finest artists, and will be held at several restaurants at Tuscany, the awesome strip of dining establishments at Upper McKinley Road.

One of the things you can learn is basic brush calligraphy, conducted by Mimai Cabugnason (check out her work at IG @chrrrmaine) at Marciano’s.

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Other workshops available include:

  • basics of doodling: Nelz Yumul of WeeWillDoodle, at Lucky’s Burger Bar
  • basic paper cutting: Hey Kessy, at Banapple Pies and Cheesecakes
  • rubber stamping: Manila Workshops, at Sophie’s Mom
  • acrylic and oil: The Artologist, at Sauceria
  • DIY tote bag designing: Nica Cosio, at Sophie’s Mom

Interested? Register for the Tuscany at McKinley Hill’s Summer Art Sessions at manilaworkshops.com or 09266167720. For Basic Paper Cutting, contact Hey Kessy at www.heykessy.com. For those taking part in the Acrylic and Oil Sessions, register by emailing theartologist@yahoo.com or by calling 09165673351.

Workshops are Php2000 per session inclusive of food, art kits, and materials. Only 10 slots are available per workshop, so register now!

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This is the press kit I received. It may or may not be the same kit you will receive in your brush calligraphy workshop.

 

Disclaimer: I was invited to the press launch of Summer Art Sessions, which included samplings of selected workshops mentioned above plus press kits.

Watercolor Workshop by Liz

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One of my highlights for last week was finally attending the Watercolor Workshop by Liz of Project Vanity. I missed the first session and I was so happy that she offered a second session that I signed up as soon as I could! The workshop was held last October 18 at the Commune (a cafe along Dela Costa St, Makati City). My daughter is into art so I thought I’d surprise her with her own slot in the workshop. When we arrived the workshop venue was pretty packed! Liz has lots of watercolor fans!

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We were provided with all the materials we needed for the workshop: watercolor paper, a set of beginner’s watercolors, brushes, a mixing palette. After a short lecture on the basics of watercolor, we got our hands dirty and did the drills. In this worksheet we tried different washes (flat wash, graduated, variegated, glazing, dry brush) and textures (stippling, stamping, salting).

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Clearly my daughter knew what she was doing. Her worksheet looks so much better. She let drop that she may have done this in her art subject in school already. (??!!)

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The participants were really enjoying the drills. That is, until Liz unveiled the application of all those different washes and textures. We were instructed to paint a tree, a garlic bulb, and a landscape, which looked pretty daunting looking at the final products! Liz broke it down into steps (which were all really made up of a combination of the above mentioned washes and textures) which made it all seem easy. This is what I came up with.

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Not bad I suppose, although Liz did say that my tree needed more water (the mantra of the workshop!). I really liked doing the landscape!

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At some point my daughter decided to paint more trees and a sunset/sunrise, and even had a little cartoon drawing on the bottom right. Grabe, I felt so… behind, at that point.

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The experience was really great! I learned a lot of stuff and I went out of there inspired to continue to paint. I definitely have a long way to go, but the workshop taught me that I can learn it even at this stage in my life. Thanks Liz for holding this #watercolorworkshopbyliz!

Event: Blogapalooza 2014

This year I got the chance to once again attend Blogapalooza. This year was bigger, with a lot of participating brands, and a mind boggling 700 participating bloggers and social media experts. Blogapalooza is a Business-to-Blogger event that aims to provide brands with direct access to bloggers and their readers. It happened last October 11 at the SMX Convention Center at SM Aura.

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Read on to find out more about what went down at Blogapalooza 2014!

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Jergens 7-Day Challenge

Are you familiar with Jergens lotion? If you’re like me, you probably grew up with some variant of Jergens lying around your house. My mom is a huge fan of this brand as it’s very mild and yet quite moisturizing. I took after her and started using Jergens starting from my teens. I’ve tried other brands of course, but there’s nothing like the “basics” to get my skin back to its youthful glow without getting my sensitive skin worked up.

This is why I didn’t hesitate to take up the 7-Day Challenge that Vibelle set up! It was a very intriguing activity and I was even more pumped when I received my challenge kit (below). I will be updating this post with the challenge for the day and what I did. Keep your eyes peeled!

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Mission 1: Radiate beauty from within

I am so tickled with the “Mission” part! It really feels like I’m some sort of secret agent! Anyway, this mission is to radiate beauty from within by sharing the bottle of Jergens lotion from the challenge kit with a complete stranger. I will be completely honest: this is probably one of the hardest things I can be challenged with. I have big stranger anxiety and I couldn’t find a good way to approach a stranger for this challenge. I did the next best thing: I gave my bottle of Jergens lotion to the person in the office I feel the least connection to.

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Meet Sheila. She is the company cleaning lady. I chose her because 1) I feel that I don’t know her that much and 2) this is a great way to appreciate her work, with a gift. I shyly asked if she would be okay accepting the gift and posing for a picture. As you can see, she was quite ecstatic to receive it, and was a quite tickled with having her picture taken. I’m happy I chose her; it seemed to have made her day!

Mission 2: LEFT vs RIGHT

Today’s mission is to compare skin that has Jergens applied on versus skin that is bare. I used the Jergens Ultra Healing lotion provided in the challenge kit. This lotion has an illuminating Hydralucence blend and Vitamins C, E, and B5 to address extra dry skin. This is actually my go-to Jergens variant, and I felt quite nostalgic when I took in that familiar clean scent.

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As you can see here (click the photo for a larger version!), my left arm (where I applied the Jergens Ultra Healing) is very luminous, alive, and smooth-looking. In contrast my bare right arm looks really tired and absolutely dry. I really love how immediately obvious the effects of the lotion is by making my skin look more alive.

Mission 3: Keep Hydrated

This mission sounds pretty straightforward: using the tumbler included in the challenge kit, drink water and take a photo of the tumbler every time it gets refilled. Hydration is the name of the game! Keeping hydrated is a great way to hydrate the skin which will then result into healthier and more glowing skin. I, however, found it quite the challenge! Firstly I couldn’t figure out how to put timestamping on my camera, so I just.. put my watch next to my tumbler. The second and more difficult challenge is not drinking anything else for this day! I’m not a soda drinker by any means, but I am an avid coffee drinker. I could not properly function without a cup, but I took the challenge and drank only water! Here are my photos.

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I didn’t really think it was difficult to drink water, since I drink a lot of water everyday. The challenge of not drinking anything else (coffee in particular!) had me stumped, and to be honest it did affect my mood for most of the afternoon. I felt lethargic and irritable at the same time, which made me realize just how dependent I am to that drink. My skin, on the other hand, never felt so nice with all the extra water I’ve been drinking. I am loving how many insights I am getting with these challenges!

Mission 4: Nurture Relationships

This mission took a while to execute because of some logistics issues. I am tasked to take out my mom or my best girl pal on a surprise dinner at Cabalen care of Jergens. Unfortunately my mom is out of the country at the moment, and my gal pals are not available. I took my best friend out instead.

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It just so happens that I married my best friend! My husband and I have been together for 14 years (gasp!) and married for 9. One of our favorite things to bond over is food, so this mission just seemed so apt. We had a great time at dinner as usual, and I definitely appreciate this chance to try out Cabalen. Thank you Jergens!

Mission 5: Make Someone Smile

Jergens would like you to smile! They are graciously giving away a Jergens gift pack through Becoming Sleek. Click here for the actual giveaway and you might win yourself a Jergens gift pack!

Win a Jergens gift pack!

Mission 6: Healthy Habits

This mission gives me the opportunity to share with you one of my favorite healthy recipes that includes an ingredient good for the skin. I’m supposed to share a family recipe but I don’t have many of those (my mom isn’t the cooking type unfortunately). I learned this recipe on my own, as with most of the recipes I know. I got this from a book called Just Bento, and I even published a blog post way back when I was still doing food blogging. This recipe of Stewed Chicken and Carrots contain, well, carrots! Carrots have beta carotene, which gives us Vitamin A and is also an antioxidant, both are good for the skin. Without further ado, here is the recipe! PS: This was copied word for word from my food blog, Baon Ko Bento.

Stewed Chicken and Carrots

Basic tsukune, modified

  • 600 grams ground chicken
  • 1 finely grated medium carrrot
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg minus a bit of egg white
  • 3-4 tbs cornstarch

I just dumped everything into a bowl and mixed them all up until they resemble a very smooth but slightly wet paste. I didn’t have any ginger on hand (the original recipe calls for about half a tablespoon of it) so I simply omitted it.  I don’t know what was wrong with my ground chicken, but it does look like it’s too wet to hold solid when dropped into the broth. Anyway, once I had the chicken mixture ready, I mixed up the broth.

Broth

  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tbs sake
  • 2 tbs mirin
  • 2 1/2 tbs dark soy sauce
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced into small pieces

I just put the broth ingredients into a large sauce pan, brought it to a boil, and dropped teaspoonfuls of the chicken mixture into the hot broth. I was expecting it to all fall apart once it hit the liquid, but to my surprise it stuck together. I left it to boil for around 15 minutes, and turned off the heat.

Here is how it looks like when done. I really love this because it’s quite easy to make, and you can put as much carrots as you want in it. It also keeps well in a baon container and reheats nicely in a microwave. Back when I was still bringing baon to work this was one of my favorite things to make.

Mission 7: The Finish Line

I can’t believe I’m at the finish line of this very interesting challenge! Today I am supposed to take a similar full-body photo of me three months ago, and compare it to a similar one today. Here’s my comparison photo.

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It wasn’t really my intention but it turns out I wore the same shirt even. I really like how my skin looks more radiant and feels more smooth with the constant use of Jergens Ultra Healing Lotion. I also feel more confident after completing this challenge. Thank you Jergens and Vibelle for letting me participate!

Connect with Jergens on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter by simply clicking on the links I’ve provided.

Event: Celeteque 3rd Anniversary + New Releases

As a HUGE Celeteque fan, I’m unutterably pleased and honored to be invited to their 3rd Anniversary celebration! I’m so happy that they continue to make their presence felt whenever I do groceries (Celeteque stocks are always there in many supermarkets), as I would like to see them become a household brand.

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The anniversary party was held at an unexpectedly posh place on the second floor of Ziebart along Chino Roces at Makati City. This is Prime 101, a really awesome steak place with really cool interiors. Check this out.

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Marcie, PR executive, Tina, Product Manager of Celeteque, and I had fun posing on the bed stationed near the entrance.

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The food was divine! This overflowing plate does not seem much, but I was pretty stuffed at the end of it. Every single thing is delicious!

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Along with celebrating the anniversary, Celeteque also launched two new releases.

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First we have an interesting skincare-makeup hybrid. Celeteque Acne Solutions Line’s newest baby is the Acne-Clearing Concealer. In those days where we have that annoying pimple when we have an important event to attend, this concealer will definitely come in handy. It is designed to protect and treat the pimple before we put on other layers of makeup. It contains Salicylic acid which opens up pores and exfoliates dead skin cells, and Camellia sinensis (tea tree) extract which has soothing and antibacterial properties to treat the pimple.

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The other new release is actually a reformulation. Celeteque Advanced Anti-Aging Cleansing Oil previously is my go-to waterproof mascara-remover, as it readily dissolves the stubborn product right off. The new formulation still does the makeup-removing part, but in addition, it is also an emulsifying cleanser. You apply a bit of oil all over the face (even still with makeup!), then splash a bit of water on it. It will turn into a white liquid, which you will then rinse off normally. Makeup will be removed, and at the same time leave your face cleansed and moisturized! The most amazing part of this is the fact that it only costs Php249 for the 50ml bottle!

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Aside from hearing first hand about the new releases, I also got to hang out with some old and new blogger friends. Thanks again to Marcie, Tina, and Zei for inviting me to celebrate with you!

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Visit Celeteque on their website, Facebook and Twitter, for more product information!

Event: Vitress Catwalk

Vitress is a brand that I’m familiar with, but have not yet tried before. I see a lot of advertisements for their products, but for some reason I did not think it was a product set for me.  It should be though, as I have quite an unruly type of hair, and Vitress has products that fit right into my needs. Luckily enough I got an invite to a Vitress press event which allowed me not only to try the products, but also meet the brand ambassadors.

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In this event participants are encouraged to walk the catwalk prior to the start of the program. Three huge electric fans are set up to purposely mess your hair up. At the end of the catwalk, attendants and models will assist you to put on the correct Vitress product to put your hair back into rights. Unfortunately I do not have any photos of myself doing this, but I totally did try it!

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There was a selfie station at the end of the catwalk where we are encouraged to take selfies and upload them with the appropriate hashtags for a contest. I tried my best, but my phone isn’t good at taking “real” selfies.

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I gave up, and instead asked one of the attendants for help. This is a much better selfie and is the one I actually uploaded. Didn’t win, but was still fun!

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The much awaited brand ambassadors finally arrived! I didn’t get to take a photo of the first ambassador, IT Girl Solenn Heussaff, and one of the new ambassadors, fashionista Kim Jones, because there were too many people taking photos! I was able to grab one of star athlete Gretchen Ho.

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All three of them did the catwalk, and applied their favorite Vitress product to put their hair back after the wind attack. They then took a turn at the selfie booth, along with the host.

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Solenn Heusaff is a very popular model and actress; I see her ads everywhere. She has been the face of Vitress for some time. She uses Vitress Hair Repair Cuticle Coat because she curls and blow dries her hair a lot which resulted in damaged hair. She also co-designed her own product, the Vitress Solenn Cuticle Coat, a product that tames curls and waves for smooth and shiny hair.

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Kim Jones, one of the new ambassadors, is a TV host and fashionista. When not on set, she relies on Vitress for her hair needs. She also uses the Vitress Hair Repair Cuticle Coat to keep her hair sleek and in place. She likes the fact that the Vitress bottles are portable!

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Gretchen Ho also joins Vitress as ambassador. She is a pro volleyball player known for her humble demeanor and laidback style. She uses Vitress Sun Protect Hair Polish, perfect for her active lifestyle. She also uses Vitress Heat Protect Cuticle Coat for shoots, keeping her hair shiny and healthy even with all the styling it undergoes.

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All in all it was a fun event, made more so as I got to hang out with my blogger friends!

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Thank you Vitress and Marcie for inviting me to the event! Check back here soon as I give a more in-depth discussion of the different Vitress products.

Find out more about Vitress on their Facebook page, Instagram, and Twitter.

Event: Pixy Cosmetics Launch

Ever since I first heard of it through BDJ, I’ve been super intrigued about the brand Pixy. I was lucky enough to be invited to the media launch of the brand (thanks again Liz!) so that I can get to know it better.

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The theme was “Beauty Blossoms in Manila” and boy was it ever! Pink and white abound the venue, with sakura trees and japanese paper lanterns scattered about. Pretty was only the beginning!

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I was really taken with the details on this paper lantern.

Pixy is a Japanese-formulated and Indonesian-manufactured makeup line that focuses on flattering skin tones and bringing out one’s natural beauty. It aims to be a loyal beauty companion, ready to support and awaken one’s youthful glow and creative spirit no matter where one is!

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Photo booth station!

According to Hiroyuki Mitsuoka, President of Mandom Philippines:

Mandom is excited to bring Pixy here to the Philippines because we believe our purpose is to contribute to the beautiful, healthy and pleasant living.  Filipinas have an innate happiness and natural beauty.  Pixy allows women to enhance this beauty by offering quality products to highlight their Truly Asian Beauty.

The event included a makeup demonstration by Xeng Zulueta of two looks, Tokyo Kawaii and Tokyo Glam, exclusively using Pixy products. The demonstration was enlightening, and I learned a few new tricks to try out.

PIXY Launch Photo

Photo shows: The Mandom Philippines Corporation’s  President and CEO, Hiroyuki Mitsuoka (left to center); General Manager of Sales and Marketing, Hirotsugu Ohashi (center); Marketing Associate for All Ladies Brand, Olaiza Sunga (far left), and Product Planning Specialist Jacqueline David Calanoc (2nd to right) join makeup artist Xeng Zulueta after she gave tips and tricks with models Ana Leticia (2nd to left)  and Luany Ayumi (right of center) at the PIXY Product Launch on August 6, 2014, at Whitespace Manila.

We were also given a complete set of their makeup line to try out. It came in this adorable pink bucket.

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Here are the items I actually was able to take home. I’ll be reviewing these over the next few weeks, so stay tuned!

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I had a blast at the launch! It was really nice catching up with blogger friends, as well as make new ones!

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Pixy Cosmetics is available at Watsons branches, and is distributed by Mandom Philippines Corporation. Like Pixy Cosmetics on Facebook!