Lifestyle

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The second part of my holiday diary (part 1 here) is all about fashion and food – basically two of my biggest hobbies after beauty. I have included my recommendations for some really good restaurants that I had dined in Phuket, and of course some snaps of the new resort wear I added recently.

Holiday Looks

Shopping for resort wear is always my favorite activity to do as part of holiday planning. The anticipation of going on holiday soon as well as having a valid excuse for buying more beautiful dresses always excites me. This holiday, I added another dress from my go-to brand Zimmermann. She does the most romantic and floral dresses with a boho spin, such as this off-the shoulder dress I picked. Also loving this top in the same print.

Hat – Eugenia Kim

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my favorite candid shot

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Camilla is the iconic high end Australian beachwear label that is stocked in most premium online retailers. Their signature bold prints in silk dresses and kaftans are over the top and dramatic, and goes well with your vacation on an exotic island! The pictures online do not do it justice, as they are so delicate, flowy and looks very expensive in real life. Most of her designs can be worn in multiple ways, and this beautiful Frill Dress I picked (also available here and here in a different print) can be worn off shoulder, one shoulder, or over the shoulders. Again I love anything with a dramatic take on the sleeves this season.

Shoes – here for less than $100 / Sunglasses – Tom Ford Aviator

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Restaurants

Trisara

There were two restaurants inside Trisara, The Thai seafood restaurant served authentic Phuket styled Thai food. I dined there twice, and overall the food was great (but did not blow me away as I have very high standards for Thai food) with a lovely posh ambiance, and the service was always top notch. Trisara had another restaurant with a selection of world food over the deck area. The vibe was more relaxing, beachy, and casual with a beautiful ocean view during the day. I really enjoyed dining there as they had lots of choices for western food such as my favorite lobster sandwiches.

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Every Sunday, Trisara would host their Sunday brunch which was very famous in Phuket. It was more like a premium seafood buffet that looked amazing. The brunch was extremely popular and normally booked out days in advance, and was open to public.

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Some restaurants in Phuket that I highly recommend:

  • Bann Rim Pa – It serves high-end royal Thai food. I found the food style was quite different to the traditional Thai food. Overall the food was lovely, and it was interesting to experience what the Thai royals ate! The place is located oceanfront with a beautiful 180 ocean view, and is tastefully decorated.

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  • Bampot – One of my favorite places in Phuket. European and Asian Fusion food with a modern open kitchen design.

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  • Siam Supper Club – Another chic place to dine in Phuket. Love the old style New York deco, with soothing Jazz music in the background. If you are bored of Thai food, this is the place to go for some authentic grill and pizzas, and they also had some popular Thai dishes.

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  • Raya – I had the best dinner ever!  It’s the place where Thai prime ministers and celebrities go to for the most authentic thai food. The place looked very run-down but was purposely decorated to look vintage. It is located in the old town which was an interesting place to visit in Phuket other than the beaches. Apparently the food was so good that lots of wealthy people in Bangkok would fly their PAs down to Phuket just to buy the takeaways! Highly recommend.

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Sharing some holiday snaps of my recent trip to Phuket, and a travel journal for the first time on my blog.

Trisara is the resort that I had on my wishlist to visit for a very long time, so when hubby and I started our holiday planning this year, we quickly locked down our holiday destination to be Phuket so we got to stay at Trisara. It is a world leading luxury resort that is highly popular among the celebs and their rooms tend to be fully booked out during the holiday season. It is situated at a very secluded area of Phuket which is far away from Patong (the main tourist area). We booked our stay for 9 days, with the Oceanfront Pool Villa directly from the website, though the price is higher than going through hotel booking websites but we got some extra offers from the package including VIP airport pickup etc.

Flight

Booking a flight to Phuket was more challenging. We wanted to have direct flights as we have a 3 year old toddler, and Jetstar is the only airline that has direct flight to Phuket from Sydney. As we booked the business class, the entire check-in and departure were easy and quick, and the flight attendants were lovely and attentive. Since it is a budget airline, the seats in the business class are not the flat beds. Personally I think they are just slightly better and more roomy than the premium economy seats from the better airlines such as Singapore and BA.  Food was also better than expected, as there were 3 menu options to choose from, and there were lots of snacks and drinks offered throughout the flight.

VIP Airport Transfer

As soon as we got off the plane, we were greeted with 2 attendants from Trisara. They took care of all the luggage, and led us to the VIP airport exit lane so we skipped queuing at the customs and immigration. It was the most amazing and quickest airport checkout I have ever had! Once we got out of the airport, the Trisara chauffeur was waiting for us and greeted us with refreshments and some icy cold towels for the hot Phuket weather. The drive to the resort from the airport was 20 minutes, and the driver spoke fluent English and made a few introductions along the way.

Resort Check-In

I was pretty much amazed by Trisara’s services the minute I stepped into the resort.

We arrived at the resort around 9pm feeling tired, but we were sent to our room straight away instead of going into the reception for checking-in. Upon arrival, there was a lovely Trisara hostess waiting for us in front of our villa, she was very welcoming and friendly and instantly bonded with my boy. When we stepped into our room, literally everything we could ever thought of having was ready. It was so thoughtful of them having the baby cot, bottle sterilizer, baby bath tub and amenities organized before we even made a request. She offered us a room tour (yep it was a big villa!), and welcomed us with another round of refreshing icy drinks, fruits, and chocolates, and also prepared lots of cupcakes for my boy.

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Breakfast

Of course the breakfast is the most important meal of the day on vacation! I always look forward to spending some relaxing quality time at the breakfast. The restaurant is located oceanfront, and every table has a beautiful ocean view. The breakfast is divided into half – there is a self-serve bar for continental breakfast including varieties for pastries, cereals and Asian dumplings, and there is the A La Cart for hot breakfast with English, Thai, Japanese and Chinese choices. What I like the most is the juice bar for custom orders, and I normally get them to make a pure green juice with a blend of veges!

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Ocean Front Pool Villa

Such an amazing room – I love the Balinese aesthetic to it and it still looks modern and up-to-date. The room is big enough for my son to run around the whole day without feeling crammed. The private infinity pool is the highlight, as it is big enough for a proper swim and also ideal for chilling out. There are complimentary fruits, nespressos and local flowers replenished every day.

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Play and Eat

For getting around in the resort, you can either walk, or take their buggies which is our main ‘transportation’ during our stay. Everywhere in the resort is heavenly and totally instagrammable! They have a private beach that is voted as one of the world’s top beaches, and there is a big infinity swimming pool by the beach where you can relax. As a family with little kids, we have spent a lot time in the public pool area as they also have a little kiddy swimming pool with very shallow water where my boy absolutely enjoyed playing.

Other activities they provide include daily yoga, Pilates, lots of water sports, Thai cooking classes, well-being classes etc. For kids they have a dedicated kids room that is filled with toys for all age groups.

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Overall the service and hospitality at Trisara was impeccable and flawless. I have stayed at many luxury resorts/hotels, and Trisara is by far the best in terms of hospitality. Every hostess knows our name everywhere we go, and we are always greeted with the warmest welcome and help. They are very attentive with every little details, and this is the only place where I feel they look after our stay beyond our expectations. At one point I had even sent a driver to purchase some nappies for my boy at midnight! The daily house keeping and evening turn down services begin as soon as we leave the room without asking! And they are done before we get back with everything fully replenished and tidied. I really can gush about it forever, but I better stop here so stay tuned for part 2 which I will talk more about the food, shopping, and my holiday looks!

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I had a wonderful vacation at Phuket for 10 days which I am currently organizing some pictures to post soon. It never feels long enough but that’s what makes our vacations so special in our lives (well unless you are a celeb or a global jet setter blogger!) As for me, I am happy with our holidays every 6 months, and I thoroughly enjoy the entire planning process including what to pack! This post is for sharing the skincare products that I brought with me on holiday. Since the destination is a hot tropical island, I brought lots of lightweight hydrating and brightening serums/lotions, and because I love taking pictures I like to have products that keep my face looking firm and lifted so more photogenic… Last but not least, lots and lots of sunscreens are a must.

My favorite beach bag is bought here

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CLEANSERS

Using the Bioderma Micelle Water (travel size) for makeup removal. I love the Ren Rosa Centifolia Cleansing Gel so much so I bought a full size of this. It’s a rose-infused gentle gel cleanser with a fresh rose smell that feels extremely soothing and refreshing which makes it a perfect morning cleanser. It doesn’t strip any moisture off, and keeps the skin supple and fresh. Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant is one of  my HG cleansers for night time use, so I have to bring a travel size along with me. It’s a cleanser and an exfoliator in one that purifies the skin and deep cleans the pores without feeling harsh and drying on the skin. The Clinique Clarifying Lotion 1 is a refreshing toner for sweeping away any dead skin cells, and completely removes last traces of dirt and oil collected in your pores. In such a hot weathered place, I prefer to use multiple cleansing products just to keep my skin very clear and clog free.

SERUMS and MOISTURIZERS

I prep my skin with the Sulwhasoo First Care Activating Serum – it’s a highly potent treatment lotion that immediately hydrates the skin and boost the benefits of other skincare products, (detailed review here). Followed by the luxurious Chantecaille Bio Lifting Serum (reviewed here). It’s hydrating, soothing, anti-aging and provides a lifting effect to the face. During the day, I also apply the Tracie Martyn Face Resculpting Cream which is their signature product from the line. This is the travel friendly size which was made exclusive for Net-A-Porter. It can be used on the face as well as on the body for an immediate sculpting and firming effect. I have quite mixed feelings about it, as it works much better on the body than on the face for me. If you are after a face firming lotion for less than $100, nothing beats the famous Clarins Shaping Facial Lifting Total V Contouring Serum.

MASKS

I have dozens of paper masks with me (a mix of high and low end) on holiday, as the plan is to use at least one per day. As ironic as it sounds for spending most of the day at the beach and the pool during vacay, I don’t want to be tanned because my skin is prone to pigmentation! So every 2 nights I use the Sulwhasoo Snowise Ex Brightening Mask (reviewed here), It’s the best brightening mask I’ve ever used, as it definitely prevents my face from being tanned under long time sun exposure, and it helps to brighten up by one to one and a half shades after long term use. For hydrating and instant radiance boost, I like to use the SK II Facial Treatment Mask. A budget friendly brand is the Korean SNP Masks. I have used lots of theirs animal masks and liked them all. My favorite has to be the rabbit – it’s a multi purpose product that serves as a brightening beauty mask as well as keeping my 3 year old entertained by having a rabbit-faced mommy!

SUN PROTECTION

Using the french drugstore brand LA ROCHE-POSAY as they are rated very highly in a Japanese beauty magazine. Overall they are pretty good. The UVIDEA XL Melt In Cream SPF50 PA++++ is for the face that has a milky lotion texture and is non-greasy and feels light weight on the skin without feeling like having sunscreen on. The Anthelios XL Ultra Light Fluid SPF50 (best seller) is for the face and the body. It is slightly richer, so I use it on my body as well as for my son as the formula is made for sensitive skin and feels light on the skin so it doesn’t clog the pores and leave a white film on the skin.

BABY

Highly recommend the LA ROCHE-POSAY Baume B5 Soothing Repairing Balm for babies/toddlers. It helps to heal sensitive skin, rashes and insect bites.

 

 

 

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When a big sparkling diamond is not on the near horizon, there are little luxury things in the world that will bring a smile to you everyday without breaking your bank. My favorite is probably everything from the iconic french fragrance maker – Diptyque Paris. Apart from their luxury scented candles, I have recently discovered they also carry this incredible line of Scented Ovals which I have been dreaming of to have such a product. These are the small scented home accessories that are used to perfume small spaces. Prior to this discovery of the century, I always liked the Hermes scented papier perfume, but I much prefer the Diptyques as they are longer lasting and offer lots of scented options.

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The design is very elegant and look expensive in an understated french way. Each scented oval is hand-made with a white ceramic medallion, and filled with a hand-dripped scented wax that is embossed with the name of the fragrance.  It is designed for perfuming small spaces such as the closet, drawer, or even the bathroom. I was told the product will last you about 1-2 years. While the scent is still very strong when it is  new, it is best for keeping it in the closet and it will make your clothes smell like HEAVEN! Generally you would only keep one per closet, and it keeps the space perfumed and away from any stale odour. Depending on the size of your closet, for a small closet I find that the fragrance also transfers to the clothes mildly which is a bonus. After one year when the scent starts to dissipate, then you can leave it in a smaller space such as your drawers. It is not recommended for use in the car as the wax might melt in very hot conditions.

pictured: Sea Lace Top

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The scented ovals come in 4 different fragrances – the Baies, Figuier (leans more fruity), 34 boulevard saint germain, and Roses (floral based) I picked up the former 3 as they are less feminine, and blend in well with my wardrobe. Here is a brief description on each scent.

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Baies is my all time favorite fragrance from Diptyque. I have been addicted to it for years and I have it in the candles, perfume as well as the scented oval. Main notes are the roses and blackcurrants, that smells slightly woody and fruity. To me this is such a unique scent that I will never be bored of.

Figuier is a soft woody fig scent. If you love the Philosykos fragrance which is the best selling perfume for Diptyque, you would love this one.

34 is the special scent that was born after many customers requested to ‘bottle’ the boutique of Diptyque located on Saint Germain which was filled with many rare and precious fragrances. It is complex and unisex that encapsulates the scent of the boutique. If you haven’t had a chance to visit the Paris boutique, then 34 is as close as you will get!

You can find Diptyque products at Nordstrom online. I bought mine at Neiman Marcus.

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My ultimate holidays gift guide for all budgets that guarantees to make everyone smile – just gift me anything on my list and I will definitely be thrilled!

FOR MUMS

1. Slip Beauty Sleep Pure Silk Pillow Case – I want one too!

2. Estee Lauder Re-Nutriv Gift Set – Highly recommend this ultimate luxurious anti-aging value pack for our mums

3. GHD Styler Limited Edition

4. Deborah Lippman Cuticle Set

5. Parlux Hair Dryer – Been using Parlux hairdryers for years, and it’s absolutely the best in the market. Will never go back to other brands!

6. Chanel Mini Brush Set LE – Classy, stylish and practical

FOR HER

1. MAC Finest Eyeshadow Palette – It’s only $86 for $160 worth of products

2. Tom Ford Lip Color Set – A great set that contains 4 best seller shades including Spanish Pink; Pink Dusk; Blush Nude and Casablanca

3. UD xGwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette LE

4. ChanLuu Cashmere and Silk Blend scarf – Love the color and feel of this scarf

5. L’Oreal Steampod – Thumbs up the best hair styling tool that straightens and conditions your hair at the same time! And love the white edition. (reviewed here)

6. PRADA Nylon Cosmetic Case – Reasonable priced for a Prada accessory, and it’s a fantastic practical cosmetic pouch that is roomy, light, ultra durable and washable.

7. Larsson & Jennings CM Rose Gold watch

8. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette – The best palette ever released from Hourglass

9. RabLabs Snowy Coasters – Marble is the new black for the stylish girls

10. Clarisonic Cleansing System LE – A life changer for cleansing (reviewed here)

11. Steven Klein for Nars Luxury lip set – Drooling over this set

12. Diptyque Candle Trio LE – I have an obsession with Diptyque candles, and especially the limited editions sets around the holidays season.

 

 

 

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NEW IN – Fendi Monster

September 16, 2015

Bought this little Fendi monster a while ago and finally had the chance to take some pictures. It’s cute (but not the usual girly cute) in its own unique way, and I think that’s what makes it appealing to me. Since I love investing in classic bags, this is a perfect accessory for adding a playful and whimsical spin to them. I bought mine at the Fendi boutique in the DFS Gallery in Australia (they have very limited stocks), and you can find them online here and here. There are also many affordable options such as this and this in the market now.

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Hermes Birkin 35 Black

Georg Jensen Candelabra

 

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I have recently re-organized my makeup bag before my trip to Sweden, so I thought I’ll do a ‘what’s in my bag’ post. The makeup pouch is from Louis Vuitton 2015 Summer Collection limited edition. I really like the bright pink V graphic on it and its matching hot pink interior – it is very on trend and adds a playful touch to a rather classic style! The size is also quite compact, and I like the round shape (rather than a flat pouch) so it’s great for holding lots of makeup!

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1. Dior Eye Reviver Eyeshadow Palette – reviewed here

2. Bobbi Brown Cheek Palette Pink – reviewed here

3. Suqqu Cheek Brush – The greatest investment you can make for a brush! I have been using it everyday for the past 3 years and it is still in perfect condition (reviewed here)

4. Chantecaille Corrector Concealing Pen – reviewed here

5. Beauty Bar 24k Gold – Highly recommend! I use this face massage tool whenever I can for an instant lifted contour (reviewed here).

6. Dior Rainbow Powder – I use it as a setting powder with a kabuki brush for a soft glow with a brightening effect (reviewed here).

7. BBrowBar Brow Pen – Best brow pen I have ever used (reviewed here)!

8. Charlotte Tilbury Liquid Pencil in Eye Cheat – Can’t live without this pencil now. I use it on the lower waterline and it instantly makes my eyes appear more awakened and bigger (reviewed here)

9. Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Eyeliner in Marron Glace –  A lovely rusty brown color I like to use on the along the lower lash line.

10. Chanel Le Volume Mascara – This mascara gives the most feathery fanned out lashes.

11. Dior Addict It Line– Review coming soon. Absolutely addicted to this liner!

12. Chanel Rouge Coco Ultra Hydrating Lip Color in Roussy – reviewed here

The interior

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I am currently on vacation so Ill just quick share some of my absolute travel beauty essentials. After years of traveling, I came to realization that I don’t need to bring my entire bathroom vanity along with me! This edition is more for a summer holiday where my main priorities are skin-hydration, sun protection, and last but not least staying photogenic (even with binge eating everyday!)

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Skin Hydration

I chose to bring the Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil in travel size with me – one of the very few brands that has makeup removal oil in travel size, and I have always been using the green one for traveling. It completely removes every trace of makeup and it’s not so oily but retains the moisture in your skin so it’s just perfect for hot weather. Then I do a second cleanse with any foam cleanser sample I can find with my beloved Clarisonic Cleansing Tool (reviewed here). I did not include the moisturizers in this post, as I am not that greatly fussed about it. I basically just grab a lot of sample moisturizers with me and use them along the way. The SK-II Facial Treatment Mask is an essential item for keeping my skin hydrated during holiday – I use one every night. After a day of exposure to the sun and chlorine, there is no moisturizer that does the same job as good as a nourishing mask for repairing and hydrating purposes.

Sun Protection

Sun protection is my passion now. I love bathing in the sun on holiday but with my current skin condition I have to be extra careful. The Shiseido Anessa Sunscreen is my go to sun protection line which I have been using for many years (my hubby also only wears this one!). It has a really high SPF, feels weightless and non drying, and best of all (for Asians),  this is the best one for tan proofing! I hardly get tanned if I wear this one liberally. The For Beloved One Advanced Whitening Arbutin plus Q10 Jelly is my new discovery. It’s a brightening and anti-pigmentation gel mask that can be used as a sleeping mask. I bought this one because this brand is known for their brightening sheet masks, so I thought I’d give this one a try. So far it’s been great as there is no darkening of any spots on my face even with the amount of outdoor activities that I do.

Photogenic

Taking pictures and selfies are the most important  things we do on holiday for girls. So as a blogger I feel ‘obligated’ to stay photogenic lol! Having a more lifted face shape (the v shape) is absolutely critical to look “better” in pictures and my secret weapon is the 24K Gold Beauty Bar. I am loving it so much as I have been raving about this tool to everyone around me, so I will definitely post a detailed review for it. In short, 5 minutes massaging face with this tool gives a noticeably more lifted and firm looking complexion that beats any face slimming/firming moisturizers in the market. I always use this one before taking FOTDs, and I love how portable this tool is.

Other products featured in the pictures include Celine Nano Luggage and Karen Walker Sunglasses.

 

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