February 10, 2015

* Sponsor Review * Breakfast for Your Face masks

Hi everyone, finally I have a day off and actually I have 2 in a row, what a relief. My current job is really stressing me out, and I miss out on so much because of it. I'm still trying to keep my blog going, so I appreciate everyone who takes the time to read my entries though they come along irregularly haha. I also hope everyone is happy to read my reviews, they are becoming a larger portion of my posts and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. I always try to review items I think you'll like to learn more about, and hopefully if you're like me you are into skin care!

I was approached by UncommonGoods.com to review some of their unique and lovely products, their assortment is particularly great for gift giving. Check out their gifts for wives, or here for gifts for mom to browse really sweet items that appeal to us ladies! Many of their items you'll see on UncommonGoods are created by artisans or small businesses, which I feel supporting is a priority. Their hand crafted items not only cover decor and jewelry, but beauty products as well. One thing I have been more concerned with over the last year or so is the condition of my skin, When I saw they offered this really neat trio of face masks that are 99% natural, I knew right away I would love to try them myself.

The Breakfast For Your Face masks are made of natural ingredients you might find in your own panty! They are in powder form and come smartly packaged in spice bottles. What is great about the powdered consistency of these masks is they have a longer shelf life then some other natural masks I have seen out there (12-18 months once opened). They are produced here in the USA by the small business Rinse, which makes a range of bath and soap products.

Everything comes packaged well in a sturdy cardboard box, inside that is a cotton drawstring bag containing the three masks and a business card. All the information you'll need about the masks is printed right on the labels. The ingredient lists are so short! The instructions are simple and easy to follow - just use 1 tsp of the mask powder and mix with your liquid of choice to make into a paste. They suggest milk, cream, olive oil, honey, tomato juice etc depending on your skin type.

I have used honey and milk when making my masks and find the texture to turn out very easy to work with and smoothing. Honey, olive oil and milk are all very high in nutrients and well known to be great for skin.

The Oatbrasion mask works very well at exfoliating and revealing softer skin, the small pieces of pumice can be a bit rough so I made sure not to rub it on my face too much. My face felt especially clean after this mask!

The Cafe Mocha mask smells so amazing! You won't want to wash it off haha. It really does de-puff your skin and it has a cooling effect on the skin.

The Yogurt mask is great now during these winter months, when the cold air dries out your face. Using this mask made my skin softer, and took care of patchiness.

Cafe Mocha mask, made with milk. You can see there are actual pieces of espresso beans in there!
Overall I was very pleased by these masks, the packaging was endearing and the powdered form is easy to work with. Also as you only use 1 tsp with each mask, the bottles last a long time so you get a great value for the price. I like how they are customizable and address common issues everyone experiences. My only complaint is that a teaspoon can't fit into the opening on the bottle so it can be a little messy measuring them out. But they are natural, smell great, and support a small business.

These masks are sold exclusively at UncommonGoods, so make sure to check out their website. They ship quickly, and package very very well. I have enjoyed their service, and it's fun to browse all the unique gifts they sell. Uncommon goods also carries gifts for husbands here as well, or personalized gifts for everyone.

February 4, 2015

* Sponsor Review * ICK T-1 circle lens in grey

Hello all, I fell off track for a bit there again. My work schedule is just a true nightmare, like yesterday I had a 10 hour shift, why should I have a 10 hour shift when I work 5 days a week? Suffice to say my personal time is barely existent haha. I'm thinking about my next move so I can have more time for my real life, but I'm at the point where I have to be really careful about my job moves. So I'll keep trying to blog as much as I can, but it's just not something I can do often anymore.

Anyhow, today I'm bringing you a new lens review. Lately I've been interested a lot in the natural type of lenses you see in current Japanese fashion magazines, they are almost so natural you can't tell they are there! So when Lens Village approached me to review one of their lenses, I thought I would try a very natural one myself. After a bit of browsing I picked the ICK T-1 lens. I had never heard of the brand before but it looked very stunning!

natural light

one lens in
At first Lens Village replied to me a few days later that they were out of stock of this lens, I was disappointed as I couldn't tell that from the website but picked another ICK brand lens anyway. However what arrived at my door was the T-1 lens afterall, so I guess there was some communication error on their end. I'm happy to have the lens I originally wanted but the mix up was not the best experience.

The first thing I noticed about the lens when I opened them up was the diameter. It's listed as 15mm, however that is just the actual size of the lens the printing on it is much smaller. I would say the actual diameter is around 13.8 to 14mm so don't expect to get much enlargement from these circle lenses. That might be a selling point for some - the natural design with a more manageable diameter creates a very soft lens. However I was excited to find such a natural pattern with a large diameter. This lens does not create a dolly eye so for me that was a detractor.

However, I really do love the design! The color of the grey is very soft and opaque so it makes a light color on any iris. There aren't many tones in the graphic but there is a lot of break up which makes it blend very easily with your own eyes. I found this design to be very close to my own eyes, but more sweet and airy. It's like my eyes but more soft and beautiful :D

As for comfort during wearing them, I found them to be about average meaning I could wear them for the bulk of the day without much irritation. I only needed to re-wet my eyes twice or so. Make sure you don't wear circle lenses more than 8 hours a day, and keep a lens kit with you! I had no trouble getting these in either, though they might as well cut down the lens and make it a 14mm overall.

I liked these lenses, and I found them to be a very wearable and trendy lens! You can see lots of models in Larme, Popteen etc wearing this sort of smaller softer design so why not try it yourself! As I have wide eyes I think 15mm suits me best, but I would try other lenses from the ICK brand. Lens Village kept open communication with me, and the shipping time was good, the item arrived promptly. They have twice now told me the items they have initially offered me are out of stock, so be aware of that before making your purchase.

January 26, 2015

* Sponsor Review * Korilakkuma hoodie blanket

Hi again friends! I'm posting two days in a row, that's even more surprising than me posting regularly haha, but I will be working until nighttime tomorrow and I know myself well enough to know I will never bring myself to blog after a long evening of working haha. I think you won't mind reading this review a day ahead of time however since it's a super cute one. From the title you already know it's about one of my favorite Japanese characters ever - Korilakkuma the little partner to the relax bear Rilakkuma.

I was approached by Yesstyle with the opportunity to review some products from their Iswas series, and even amongst all the amazingly cute products this Korilakkuma product stood out to me! Iswas is a lifestyle goods brand from South Korea, meaning they offer a wide variety of items that you utilize in daily life. They have pouches, pencils, notebooks, utensils, pillows, slippers etc all with a touch of whimsy and cuteness! They also have tie ins with characters, Rilakkuma being just one of them. Make sure to look over the Iswas product page to discover more adorable goodies.

When I first saw this Korilakkuma hooded blanket, I thought it would be a perfect item for me haha. One because it's at the top of my list of beloved characters, and two because I keep the heat quite low in my apartment to save money haha! Which means I usually need a blanket covering me to stay comfortable. How great is a hooded blanket then? It covers your body and head, the place where most of your heat escapes so this blanket will keep you extra cozy :D

As I opened the blanket I was immediately impressed with the quality of the construction, Korilakkuma's face is all in order and easily recognizable. The pink trimming runs along every edge of the blanket and is very even, plus it even has Korilakkuma's little red button to help secure the blanket in place around your shoulders. That's a very handy feature as you can move around, do your chores etc, without worrying about it dropping off and you freezing (well probably you won't freeze unless you keep it cold like me haha!)

The material isn't super luxurious, but it is soft and traps body heat well. One thing I did notice was a strong plastic smell to the blanket, so I recommend taking it out of the package promptly and airing it out a couple days before you plan to wear it. Yesstyle also recommends laying the blanket across your lap and using the hood part as a hand warmer, that sounds really smart to me so I'll be using that tip myself! I read a couple other people stating they found the blanket small, I found no problem wearing the hood even with a wig as you can see.

It could also be a quick costume :D

I expected to like this hoodie blanket, and I was not disappointed! It's very cute to look at and wear, it keeps you properly warm and looks nice draped on your sofa when not in use. I also forsee this as a great item for days you feel like looking cute but are feeling too lazy to get dressed up haha :D

Once again, I want to say that I've only had positive experiences with Yesstyle, they always answer me promptly and explain thoroughly. They pack the items very securely and safely, shipping takes just as long as you would expect coming from Asia, but it's not slow. Check out these items to complete your comfy night in!

January 25, 2015

Curl Up Cafe, a curly kitty cafe!

Good evening everyone, this post got delayed a day or two but after another full week of working by friday night I was like "nope, I'm not doing anything!" That mentality extended into Saturday, then today... But, I figured, I shall recoup no more and get down to business haha! It's been sometime since I last wrote about Japan, what a shame cause it's fun for me to share my experience and hopefully lead people to exploring new places in Tokyo. On the other hand it's also good that I'm stretching it out as I keep hoping I'll go back and get some new blog fodder... we'll see!

Inside Curl Up Cafe
Without any more introduction, let's get into it. Today I am going to introduce a new Cat Cafe I visited during my 8th trip to Japan, I've written about some other more well known cafes before. However, Curl Up Cafe is not a chain or as well known, maybe a bit off the beaten track but certainly worth the train fare with its atmosphere and charming kitty stars!

My friend booked tickets for us to visit Curl Up Cafe, and I was very excited naturally as I love cat cafes and seeing new places. This cafe in particular is a bit smaller than others I have been two and lists it's occupancy at just 8 people. Which you will understand when you get there as the interaction room (there's a waiting room in the front where you can just sit and have a drink) is close quarters and more than 8 people would make it hard to relax/play with the cats. If you want to make sure of your spot, call ahead and make a reservation. They are closed mondays.

I had an iced tea and my friend had a strawberry yogurt drink

The 90 minute course, including one drink is 1620Y which I find to be quite reasonable. They will also give you a small cookie or biscuit with your drink! Like I mentioned the atmosphere is very lovely, the decor reflects the owners tastes well while still being airy and modern. It has more of a cafe feel than other cat cafes I've been to, which can feel more like just a recreation room sometimes. It was a bit tight for me with my shyness, but you can grab a corner there are plenty of cats to go around!

One of the unique features of Curl Up Cafe are it's signature LaPerm cats. This type of cat has a very curly and luxurious coats, so you will enjoy petting them. Furthermore, the owner has shown her cats and they are award winners! Most cats you see in cat cafes are pure breeds, but how often do you interact with show cats haha :D

I found some of the cats to be much more active than the usual cat cafe kitties, and some were laying about as normal. Luckily a couple of cats I actually played with and it was very fun for me to interact with a cat a lot. However some cats in the cafe were not interested in interactions and I heard a lot of hissing or growling, so just make sure not approach a cat who warns you or stick to just taking pictures!

Overall I really enjoyed Curl Up cafe, I hope they will get more attention from tourists. It's not a central spot like some others, but you will be very happy you took the extra time heading over there!

Meguro-ku, Tokyo Haramachi 1-chome 7-4
Take the Tokyu Meguro line to Nishikoyama station, It's about a 1-2 minute walk from the station. MAP

January 20, 2015

* Sponsor Review * Pyropet Kisa cat candle

Good evening again friends, how refreshing to write again - I'm really trying to keep up to date this time hehe. I'm really tired from a long work day but I am excited to share with you all the great reviews I am sitting on. Today's review is a bit different than my usual cosmetics or fashion items but no less cute so I think you'll enjoy it! I was approached by UncommonGoods.com to review some of their unique and lovely products, their assortment is particularly great for gift giving. Check out their gifts for wives, or here for gifts for mom to browse really sweet items that appeal to us ladies!

Besides having a great stock of items I've never seen before, they specialize in handcrafted goods. Many of their items you'll see on UncommonGoods are created by artisans or small businesses, I personally feel supporting entrepreneurs is a very important issue so retailers who stock handmade items especially lovely. They also support non-profit agencies, run workshops and pay their workers a liveable wage.

I ended up choosing an item from the Home Gifts section - a Kisa cat candle which I have seen here and there on social media so I was curious about how it is in real life.The Kisa cat candle comes from the Pyro Pets line created by Thorunn Arnadottir, A feature of the UncommonGoods website I appreciated is the Maker information snipits they give in the item descriptions, it's great to know a bit about the person who has created the items.

Thorunn's style and taste really show through with her Kisa cat candle, the design is very clean with it's angular plains in soft white or pink wax. But once you burn the candle you reveal a metal cat skeleton underneath. It's a very clever and cheeky element that makes this candle stand out against others out there! Even after you have used up the candle you still have a cute metal sculpture to display on your shelf. Take a look at the video below to see how the candle works!

I think this candle is really cute either way - melted or solid, but I plan on not burning it simply because I love the pink color haha. I really love how simple the candle looks, but it has such a cute feeling. Like adult cute. It's molded very well, I didn't find any air bubbles, and it's very solid in the hand. UncommonGoods packaged it amazingly as well, secured tightly in a large box with lots of bubblepack the Kisa cat arrived to me without even one ding in it.

It's such a cute candle!
Overall I'm extremely pleased by the Kisa cat candle, it looks really beautiful on my vanity table and it could work in a wide variety of interior decor. I would certainly give it as a gift to any of my girlfriends! And if I had to buy for a man in my life Uncommon goods carries gifts for husbands here as well, or personalized gifts for everyone. Their service was good, they always replied to me and the shipping was super fast.
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