Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Art & Travel Blog: Rome, Italy - Vatican City

Finally I can write a post about my globe trotting experiences. As some of you may know Traveling is my passion, my heart and soul. I love it more than anything else. Immersing yourself in a different culture and learning about the history of the city, the Art and Architecture is a real treat.

After studying Michelangelo's paintings and sculptures for almost 2 decades of my life. I was definitely in awe to see the real original works of the grand master himself. As I sat at the end of the Sistine Chapel staring up at the ceiling, it was at that point in time that I found myself tearing from it's beauty. It was beyond believe of how someone could paint such massive fresco murals on a ceiling in such short time.

Fresco, the painting technique is to apply a layer of plaster and applying pigment or paint to the plaster when it is still wet. With this technique, only 2' x 3' sections could be painted at a time. I'm sure the math is easy as Michelangelo completed 12,000 sq ft of ceiling space in 4 years, 9 murals from the Book of Genesis. Basically depicts the story of how the world was created by God. Birth of the Sun and the Moon; Creation of Adam (mankind); Birth of Eve (the creation of women); Temptation (the forbidden fruit); and etc.

Unfortunately no photography was allowed in the Sistine Chapel or else I could show what a beauty these paintings were. Approximately three years ago the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel was cleaned and restored. This was only to reveal the beautiful bright colours in the fresco paintings done by Michelangelo. The Sistine Chapel is located in the Vatican city, at the top of the chapel there is a golden sphere that fits 4 people inside.

Those whom don't follow Art themselves may be interested in a bit of a background story. Michelangelo was commissioned by Pope Julius II to do paintings on the large stretch of 12,000 sq ft of ceiling. These masterpieces were completed within 4 years time and were considered one of his crown jewel works of art. Michelangelo was one of the longest living artists of his time, he considered himself more of a sculptor than a painter, he was well versed with many talents. He was a poet, an architect and an engineer.


Friday, 21 June 2013

Beauty Review: Dr.Jart+ Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm

As a beauty blogger I've read numerous reviews and heard great things about DrJart+ products. I was determined to climb the highest mountain and dive into the deepest ocean to find the perfect product for me. As a college graduate, I am constantly searching high and low for a proper product for my problematic skin.

Western market full coverage foundations covered my hyper pigmentation but it did not treat them; it often looked cakey as well. I've tried other light to medium coverage foundations, which required too much effort with layering and blending and setting with powder. Resulting in clogged pores and acne. Most foundations on the market didn't provide the breathe-ability that my skin requires. My skin is also intolerant to perfumed products, growing up with sensitive skin has taught me that even though a product is advertised as Unscented. There could still be some sort of perfume lingering within. I've tried drugstore to high end brands and somehow I found myself going back to the mid-range prices.

Asian BB Creams have often been too light for my complexion and too oily for my acne prone skin. Nothing has ever seemed right for my complexion. I'm constantly looking for the perfect marriage between all my day time skincare needs and coverage in a makeup product. I try to find a multitasking product to eliminate steps in my morning routine. I think I found "the one."

My method of usage and recommendations for this BB cream; as it has a light to medium coverage, it comes in one universal shade. Often I find the shade a little too light for my summer complexion but a great match for the fall and winter months. Hence I would only recommend this product for shades up to and including NC25. I am currently an NC 30-35, although it is too light for my skin tone, I compensate by using mineral bronzer (unfortunately there are not a lot of Asian brand bronzers on the market, I use the Bare Minerals Bronzing Mineral Veil) to contour the outer parts of my face and cheekbones to make it look more uniform. This resulting in an effect of the BB Cream acting as a highlighter. If you are using this as a cover up for scars or darker spots, you may need to put on a few layers and blend well. A translucent setting powder (Skinfood Buckwheat Loose Powder in Transparent)` is recommended for extremely oily skin, you can also use a finely milled rice powder (Skinfood Rice Shimmer Powder) to set it.

Dr. Jart+ Black Label Detox BB Cream has done wonders for my skin, it's not too oily, sticky or perfumed. The matte finish counteracts my oiliness in my T-zone, but it still contains moisturizing properties that eliminates scaly skin. This product is also marketed to both men and women. The other perks is that this product is free of parabens and sulfates, which are some of the top irritants for sensitive skin on the market these days.

After researching further into the ingredients of the Dr.Jart+ Black Label Detox BB Cream, I found a lot more hidden benefits as well. Caviar extract is found to speed up natural production of collagen and firms your skin as well as hydrates it. This extract is high in Vitamin A, D, B1, B2, B6 and Amino acids in which slows down the aging process. Caviar extract also protects the multiple layers of skin from pollutants and reduces inflammation. This product also contains active botanical ingredients that purify and calm sensitive acne prone skin. This is definitely a key selling point to suit my needs. I found most creams on the market that are made for acne prone skin are not catered to sensitive skin. Hence my skin flakes and looks dull and dry. SPF 25 to block out the sun's harmful rays and to slow down the aging process. Arbutin is a skin lightening agent which treats my hyper pigmentation.

BB Creams, Blemish Balm, Beblesh Balm or Beauty Balm was originally created by a German dermatologist as a post-op cream used to treat scars, moisturize, mattify and prime the skin in the 1960's. This product was later introduced to South Korea & Japan in the mid 1980's and has shown a great success. As in most Asian cultures porcelain skin is a prized asset and is well sought after as a form of beauty. These balms usually contain about 5 or more active skin care ingredients to moisturize and smooth dry skin; to prime and perfect the skins texture; used for colour correction or to create a more uniform skin tone; SPF to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.

Although being born in North America and brought up in the western culture. I prefer a bronzed glow over the porcelain skin look. Hence I have given you my method of usage in the above paragraphs. I hope you enjoyed reading my journey of hunting for the perfect product to suit my needs. And I hope you can find your "one" too.