Thursday, August 20, 2009

Rain or shine at City Garden

Rain or shine at City Garden
(The Philippine Star) Updated August 21, 2009 12:00 AM

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MANILA, Philippines - Come rain or shine, keep luxuriously high, dry and comfortable this month at City Garden Hotel.

The central business district’s leading boutique hotel offers the best accommodations at the friendliest prices.

For as low as P1,450+ per person on twin-sharing basis, experience any of the impeccable rooms of City Garden Hotel.

Enjoy the modern amenities of the fully furnished rooms complete with a flat screen TV, Wi-Fi connection, and a well-stocked mini-bar.

In the morning, start the day with the sumptuous full buffet breakfast at the charming Le Jardin Restaurant.

Even with the downpour, get a refreshing taste of the tropics with “Garden Flow” — the hotel’s Drink of the Month. The flavorful concoction combines mango rum liqueur, fresh banana, strawberry ice cream, and a dash of grenadine syrup, served in a poco grande glass. At P248++, “Garden Flow” comes with a souvenir coffee mug.

City Garden Hotel also treats lovers of the brew to the “Rainy Day Beer Special.” Enjoy the fun with endless beer for only P50+ per mug upon ordering any of the selected sumptuous menu items.

City Garden Hotel Makati is located at Makati Avenue corner Kalayaan Avenue, Makati City. For reservations or inquiries, call (02) 899-1111 or its domestic toll-free number 1-800-101-GARDEN (427336), or 0917-84HOTEL (09178446835) or 0918-84HOTEL (091884446835), or log on to

What’s the best curler for short lashes?

Makeover 911
What’s the best curler for short lashes?
By Kinny Salas
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 22:01:00 08/20/2009

Filed Under: Lifestyle & Leisure, Health and Beauty Products

I HAVE been doing the cosmetics rounds lately. Here are my new and affordable finds.

Eyelash curlers for short, sparse and drooping Asian lashes. European or American brands have too much curve in them that they end up pinching lids or not getting most of our eyelashes. The best choices are Japanese brands such as Shu Uemura and Shiseido. For those on a budget, good finds are the local brands Fanny Serrano and Nichido.

Fanny Serrano for Fashion 21 has come up with the Eyelash Curler Slim, a light, durable and precise mini eyelash curler only about a third the size of the regular curler. This was designed to accentuate the short lashes around the inner and outer corners of the eyes.

Revlon Creme Gloss (P475)—Twist the bottom and the glossy pigmented liquid oozes onto the brush. When applied on the lips, you get full coverage with the megawatt shine of a gloss and rich color pigment of a cream lipstick. Its built-in lip brush makes application easier. The color lasts for hours.

My issue: 1. Sometimes too much color oozes on the brush that I end up overdoing it. It stays within the lip line but there is too much product reminiscent of Playboy Bunny’s thick glossy lipstick. If you want that sexy pout this is definitely for you!

Makeup guru Elsa Morgan picks out Sassy Mauve, Peachy Sheen, Just Blushed and Raisin’ The Roof for those with darker, olive skintones. Those with lighter, fairer skin should try Slip Into Pink, Patent Leather Pink, Play Up Pink and Strike A Rose.

She assures Hot Tamale and Pink Cami would look beautiful on anyone. I find the colors Strike a Rose and Pink Cami too shimmery. My picks: Cherry Tart, Hot Tamale and Just Blushed.

Prepster collection

The show “Gossip Girl” has shown us that being preppy is no longer deemed boring but sexy and classy as well. Pastels are now every bit as slinky as blacks and reds.

Orly Nails has come out with Prepster collection which targets teens. My favorite is Cashmere Cardigan (crème periwinkle-blue) which, along with OMG (salmon orange) and Polo Princess (pale pastel pink) are all suitable for very light or medium-toned hands.
The safest bet is Tennis Anyone in creme formula. Suitable shades for darker skin are Country Club Khaki, a gray lavender beige, and Prim and Proper, lilac shimmer.


Avon Skin So Soft Intensive Whitening Hand and Body Lotion (P350) has a soothing but clean rose scent. Upon first application, skin is immediately whiter due to the natural minerals that diffuse and reflect light. Claim: It’s not just a temporary remedy though but also a solution to uneven skin tones. The Avon-patented whitening technology (tel. 8642900) works on darker areas, leaving you with even white skin all over.

E-mail the author at

Olive oil is best remedy for stretch marks


Olive oil is best remedy for stretch marks

By Ria Francisco-Prieto
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 21:59:00 08/20/2009

AS MY BELLY grows bigger, I find myself staring at my legs and thighs and looking out for stretch marks.

I remember about a year ago I faced the same predicament. I don’t mind anything else about pregnancy but this. Everything else will fade after birth, even zits. Stretch marks stay on forever.

Luckily, I hardly got any with my first pregnancy. Thanks to olive oil. Yes, the one used for cooking. I would slather it on while my skin is still damp right after a shower. Although it was a bit thick and warm, it moistened my skin. Plus it was so much more less expensive.

When it’s too hot, I use Clarins tonic, which I fondly call my gold potion. I love the smell plus it leaves my skin supple. Not to mention, it’s formulated particularly for pregnancy like Phytolastil gel which I get from my OB gyne Dr. Greg Pastorfide. He told me his patients who’ve had twins used this and did not have a single stretch mark.

My fear of stretch marks is due to the white deep lines I have on my legs. These ones I got at pre-adolescence. It depressed me and it still makes me sad. Thus my vigilance toward these nasty lines.

Although our skin is fairly elastic, stretch marks happen when the skin is overstretched due to sudden weight gain or loss, growth or pregnancy. The best defense is always keep skin moisturized with lotion or oil. Applying shea butter on breasts, stomach, thighs and back area, they say, is the most effective remedy against stretch marks. Drinking water and taking vitamins daily keep skin healthy.


There is so little that can be done once stretch marks appear. But there are treatments that can minimize their appearance.

Chemical peels are a common way to deal with stretch marks. A pretty high tolerance to pain is required, since there is a stinging sensation that comes with it. A dilute form of acid is used to remove the top layer of skin and give way to skin-cell production. More than one session is required and there is also a risk of additional scarring from the chemicals used.

Laser surgery is expensive and five to six sessions are needed. Also, it works best on stretch marks that are still reddish-purple. It stimulates skin growth and improvement continues up to six months after laser treatment.

Stretch-mark cream and ointment can be costly and rarely make stretch marks disappear. I have yet to find one or hear about one.

So as I stare at the pre-adolescent stretch marks on my thighs, I conclude the only way to win the war against stretch marks is by preventing them. Now I should stand up, hit the shower and apply oil while my skin is still damp.

Organic food for your skin

Organic food for your skin
By Mariel Chua
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 21:52:00 08/20/2009

Filed Under: Food, Health and Beauty Products

AS A youngster in Finger Lakes, upstate New York, Adrian Bryce Dior enjoyed a beautiful scenic environment surrounded by magnificent ice-age gorges, panoramic views and towering waterfalls.

It was only natural that his lifestyle followed an organic path –shopping at gourmet grocery stores, scoping the aisles for innovative health foods and blending his own fruit drinks.

His love affair for all things natural came to fruition three years ago: Dior had always relied on his Kenmore stainless-steel juicer and blender to provide for his active body’s nourishment. One night, he realized what could be good for his body may just as well be wonderful for his skin. Bryce Organics was born.

“I thought, ‘How could I turn these healthy drinks into skin care products?’” he says. Dior then spent the rest of the night and into the next day contemplating and planning his skincare line. Finally, months of preparation yielded the brand’s first 10 organic scrubs.

Sweet start

“The first product I developed was The Tahitian Vanilla Bean Exfoliating Facial Polishing Scrub,” says Dior. “It was made with an organic ground vanilla bean paste from Tahiti.”

While Bryce no longer carries this product, (“I felt the market was oversaturated with ‘vanilla-type’ skincare products”), customers can now enjoy the line’s three most popular, award-winning Exfoliating Facial Polishing Scrubs: California Meyer Lemon, Mediterranean Pomegranate and Hawaiian Coconut.

“If I have a few blemishes, one morning I’ll use the California Meyer Lemon Exfoliating Facial Polishing Scrub, as it clears my skin right up,” says Dior, who uses Bryce products everyday and tests every new product on himself.

“If my face is looking tired and needs a little face lift, I use the Mediterranean Pomegranate Exfoliating Facial Polishing Scrub. Often, I find myself mixing all of them in the shower!”

Organic difference

So what sets Bryce Organics apart from the rest of the ‘natural’ products available in the market today? “Many different skincare brands would like you to believe that all of their ingredients are organic or ‘all-natural,’ explains Dior. “Sadly, this isn’t true, [so always] read your ingredient labels,” he advises.

Bryce skincare products are derived solely from 100-percent certified organic ingredients and contain no toxic chemicals, cancerous parabens, fillers, artificial preservatives or additional additives of any kind.

“Not only do we use organic fruit extracts, we use the actual whole fruit – from the seeds and shavings to the zest.” Adds Dior, “These products are so fresh and so pure you could even eat them and they taste good!”

Take your fruity pick

For hot and humid days, Dior recommends the Florida Key Lime & Hawaiian Coconut Refreshing Moisturizing Mist. And for a skin-softening bath and shower experience, try the Maine Blueberry Moisturizing Bath & Body Oil.

Watch out for the upcoming California Honewdew Melon & New England Cucumber Eye Serum, which provides a burst of hydration and nourishment for the sensitive under-eye area.

Customers may order online at You may also reach Dior directly via e-mail at (for individual customers) or (for spa and hotel suppliers).

Mariel Chua is the former beauty editor of Cosmopolitan, Seventeen, and Ok! Magazine Philippines. Ask a beauty question at or visit

How to create nude lips

How to create nude lips

By Kelly Misa

Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 21:50:00 08/20/2009

Filed Under: Health and Beauty Products, Lifestyle & Leisure

SINCE it was spotted on the models of Versace, Marc Jacobs and Roberto Cavalli for the Fall-Winter 2009-2010 collections, barely there puckers have made its way to the red carpet and makeup counters.

Best worn with dark, smoky eyes or palette of brown, taupe and beige, nude lips can play up the rest of your makeup. It also balances out strong eyeshadow and makes lips look fuller.

Incorporate this trend into your makeup wardrobe with some tips and tricks from Shu Uemura makeup artist, Omar Ermita.

Keep your lips chap-free. Prep your lips before applying lip color by gently brushing them with a soft, wet toothbrush. This removes dry, scaly skin and leaves your lips soft and smooth.

“It is very important to keep your lips in good condition if you plan to go nude. There’s nothing worse than seeing globs of lip color clinging to dry, flaky bits of skin,” says Ermita.

Dab on a layer of concealer. Applying concealer or foundation on your lips erases its color, allowing lipstick to stand out without having to pile it on thickly. Ermita suggests a coat of lip balm, then add a light layer of concealer or foundation using a lip brush. Top this off with a nude lip color and lip gloss to create basic pale lips. To give lips fullness, apply a high-shine, shimmery lip gloss on lower lip instead of your regular clear gloss.

“The best thing about nude lipstick is that there is a shade for everyone,” says Ermita.

Pale colors tend to wash out thin lips. Ermita recommends “adding a subtle splash of color to thinner lips without overdoing it.”
A nude lip color with a hint of pink or blend of shimmer prevents thin lips from disappearing.

Full lips, on the other hand, look best with some definition. “Use a nude lip liner to lightly trace the outline of your lips, then fill in with lip balm for a look that’s subtle,” he said.

Find the hue to match your skintone. “Stay within two shades of your natural skin tone. Girls with fair complexion should look for pinker nudes or peach hues while those with darker skin should go for creams or pale beige undertones,” says Ermita.

To avoid lips from looking ghostly, stay away from very pale shades and too-matte formulas. Instead, opt for a creamy finish or up the shine by topping lips with gloss.

Make lip color last. A tried-and-tested trick of experts to make lip color last longer is to apply it in layers.

“Use a lip brush to apply lipstick, blot with a tissue and reapply,” says Ermita. Also, applying lip liner helps keep the color on longer. Just make sure your lip liner matches your lip color. “Browns or dark shades are a huge no-no when it comes to nude lips.”

Just like the color of your lipstick, its finish is just as important. “A matte finish works well on the runway, while a glossy finish works for everyday use or for a night out. Using a hint of shimmer adds dimension to your lips,” says Ermita.

Must-have nudes

Avon introduces its Glazewear Dimensions Lipstick this month with a special price offer (P249 from regular price of P375). This high-shine lipstick changes color with every angle. Try Nude Gold and Pink Glimmer.

Ever Bilena’s Extreme Lipstick offers long-lasting color and shine without the high price. Only P150, its best nude shades are Puppy Love and Pink-A-Boo.

L’Oreal Paris New Infallible Lip Duo Compact promises color that lasts up to 16 hours. The compact includes a non-transfer color and conditioning lip balm that stays on all-day. Available in 10 shades for P975.