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Posts from the ‘Beauty & health’ Category

About hair

Last week, I went to Hayato Tokyo to try a new keratin treatment that promises silky hair without the use of damaging chemicals. I chemically straighten my hair every summer to get rid of the unruly mess that it turns into in humid weather. The effect is permanent but it dries out the life out of my hair. The new keratin treatment is all about the balance between inner and outer beauty so of course I was instantly on board when my stylist Taichi announced he was looking for models to try it out. The treatment can be customized which means that if you just want to tame your curls a little bit without pin-straightening them – you can do it by choosing the solutions with medium intensity. I wanted my hair straight so I went for the strongest combination of “shape” and “smooth” treatments. And although the hair does become straight, it still has some texture to it. After 6 days I got my volume back but it still looks super polished. The effect is not as lasting (only around 5 months) but it is better in the long run. I’m actually making my hair more healthy rather than more damaged.. Let’s see how to goes but for now I am super happy.

Oh, and I chopped all of my dry, super nasty long hair – I just couldn’t deal with it anymore. I also want to grow my natural color back so over the next year or so I’ll be temporarily coloring my hair darker and darker to make the difference less visible. Right now, I went two tones down but the tint is not permanent – I have to re-do it every few months or so.. Overall, my hair requires a lot of work so taking the unruliness out of it was a super big deal for me. In a combination with a short cut, it became very low maintenance which is exactly what I need in my life right now. Yay to the keratin-treated short hairdos! Why didn’t I think of it earlier? ^-^

So this is the hair in its natural state – not blow-dried, not styled. It has a few waves here and there but overall straight and it has volume.

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If I blow dry it (or when I learn to do it properly), it’ll look even better. Also, I can still curl it with a curling iron and it will last for a few days.

If you want to give it a try, head to Hayato Tokyo in Roppongi. All the staff speaks English and were trained on foreign hair in NY and London.

YSL beaute Lumiere Passion release party

Last Saturday, my friend Eri graciously invited me to the launch party of YSL beaute newest product line Lumiere passion. Within the line, the brand has released a new color just for the Asian market – pearly pink that highlights and beautifies the face. I am a big fan of their legendary Radiant touch concealer and the newly released Radiant touch or rose highlighter compliments it the best. I was excited to receive it as well as the new makeup base highlighter Le teint touche eclat or rose in my gift bag. It really makes the face look younger by inviting the light in with its light reflecting pearl powder. I had the opportunity to test it right there at the party makeup salon that was served by an army of professional makeup artists. I learned how to apply the concealer and the highlighter to feature my face the best. You can check this video from YSL for some useful tips.

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The party was held at Tokyo’s prestige Maxim’s de Paris salon in Ginza. At the entrance, we each got a YSL sticker tattoo. Eri decided to have hers on her neck. ^-^

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Besides me, she also invited two other friends – fashionable French ladies. They were both extremely elegant and friendly.

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By the way, Cara Delevingne is the face of YSL beaute this year. I really love her ability to transform from a goofy girl into a lady with impeccable style and manners.

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The party was more intimate this time, with dark setting and less people. All the guests were looking very Parisian, sometimes the attitude matched as well. ^-^ There were a lot of makeup stands where anyone can not only try the new product but also receive a makeup session and advice from professional artists.

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Miki was very animated during her makeup session. I love her fearless attitude.

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Supercupmatcha model/DJ/blogger was working at the event that night.

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The DJs were all amazingly beautiful. Ueno Arisa

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Joe and Dan from tokyodandy.com

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We all tried the new makeup on and then posed for a group photo. ^-^

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By the way, it is the first time for me to have my hair up in a pony tail since… let’s see.. never! I don’t know why but I somehow wanted to try it.. I don’t think it suits me at all.. My body proportions are weird so hiding my freakishly small head with lots of hair is my only option to look normal. Pony tail? Never again..

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And sometimes, in the modern world of #hashtags, a scene like that is not uncommon. Everyone is so busy instagramming, we come together but end up being alone the entire evening.. I remember Quiterie telling me to put down my phone..hehe Oh well, that’s the reality now. If you are not on the timeline of the event, it’s like you were never there.. :/

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Thank you Kozue san for the amazing party and thank you Eri for inviting me to it.

YSL Gloss Volupte launch party at the Hills cafe, Roppongi

Last week, my friend Eri invited me to an event in Roppongi hills. It was a YSL launch party for their new product Gloss Volupte that is going to be available nationwide from tomorrow, april 1st. The place was packed and I am not surprised.

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Maybelline A/W 2014-2015 Fashion Week Tokyo opening party

Yesterday, amazing blogger and my “mama-tomo” friend Mai invited me to the Maybelline NY opening party for the A/W 2014-2015 Maybelline x Mercedez Benz Fashion Week Tokyo. This is my second time to attend this party and I can honestly say that it is one of the best ones in town. Not only it is a great opportunity to catch up with influential Tokyoites in fashion but to also unwind in a stylish way to the tunes of popular DJs, try new products (and get some!!) and of course find yourself in the midst of it all with the most trending hashtags of the moment.

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Natura Siberica in Tokyo

Two days ago, I discovered Natura Siberica in the heart of Aoyama. It is a Russian brand that sells organic cosmetics made from wild plants harvested in Siberia. The first shop was opened in Russia in 2007 but I never knew about it since I have already been living in Tokyo at that time. However, when I posted the photo of their Aoyama shop on Instagram, many of my Russian friends replied saying that the brand is extremely popular and that they really love their products.
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Maybelline Fashion Week opening party

Yesterday, Sergey and I went to Maybelline Fashion Week kickoff party at Ba-tsu art gallery. It’s been a while since I was at a fashion scene but it felt like I never left. I was so happy to meet a lot of familiar faces including my favorite bloggers Misha Janette and Mai. ^-^

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Hayato opening party in Roppongi

Yesterday, me and Laura went to Hayato’s opening party in Roppongi. Hayato is a hair salon specializing in foreign hair and I have been going there for more than 5 years. This month, they closed their Aoyama shop and moved to a new place in Roppongi which is bigger and more beautiful. I am happy they are doing well but I hope they won’t start charging more just because they got fancy and all… ^-^ The interior is amazing though – a grungy, vintage boudoir type of setting, reminded me of second life. This style was hugely popular when I was playing the game..

Hayato first opened in New York 20 years ago, then in Tokyo 4 years later and recently in London as well. I have heard their hair straightening service is very popular abroad. All the stylists are Japanese but they speak English and use foreign colors and hair products. It is very essential if you are a blonde girl living in Asia. I never looked for another salon after discovering them.

The catering and music band were great too. A New York jazz singer Miwa Watanabe came to perform just for the occasion.

This is my stylist Taichi. He knows how to color and cut fine hair like mine. I am meeting him next week for a fresh highlight. ^-^

Oh and the new salon has beautiful new chairs that are so soft and comfortable. They have a private room with a shower as well. Could be great for moms with kids although they will probably use it for facials and massages.

Not to sound like someone who is paid to say it but they do have 30% off discount now for all the first-timers so if you are living in Tokyo and looking for a professional who knows how to handle foreign hair (without cutting the hell out of it like they do in Japanese salons), give it a try or just pop in for a consultation. It’s free. ^-^

Busting metabolism

My skinny Korean friend once told me that she has weird metbolism, everything she eats, gets burned right away. There isn’t any excess fat on her body and she looks great. It made me wondering if there are any ways that can trigger my metabolism to work faster and burn calories instead of storing them as fat.

As far as my research shows, there is only one main and efficient way to boost the metabolism : eat small amounts of food 3-6 times a day as opposed to conventional 2-3 times a day because body considers lack of food in the organism as a food stress and starts to store the fat and burns less calories to protect itself.

Here are some other factors that can influence the metabolism :

1. Eating breakfast is essential. Milk and whole grain cereal for breakfast gives a good trigger to metabolism because of calcium and fiber;

2. Eating fish can lower the level of leptin – hormone that can slow down the metabolic process;

3. Eating meat, chicken and turkey. Protein food takes longer to digest so the body uses more energy;

4. Green tea and hot peppers increase the heart rate which causes body to use more energy and burn calories faster;

5. And of course exercises can increase the metabolic rate so walking and simple squat exercise is a good way to introduce physical activity into a daily routine without going to the gym.

How to stop snacking during work..

This is a real big problem for me especially when I am bored with routine tasks or stressed over the lack of time or inspiration.. Here are all the advices I could find..:

1. When you feel hungry, drink a glass of water and see if the feeling goes away. If not, have a yogurt;

2. Small portion and healthy snacks like fruits or yogurts are of course a better choice than anything else that is sold in my office…;

3. Magnesium rich food or suppliments can help reduce the stress induced hunger so I’m gonna buy these tonight;

4. When in need of something sweet have a hard candy or a mint instead of chocolate or biscuit;

5. Concentrate on your food, avoid watching TV or browsing the internet while eating. Chewing the food thoroughly will make you full quicker;

6. Always start your meal with salads that can fill you up so you don’t fill hungry to eat more than you need;

7.  Drink at least 1.5 litres of water per day;

8. Fats and refined sugar quickly makes you hungry again so choose food that processes longer like fibers and slow-release carbohydrates;

9. Avoid snack storage in the office, if you have it – you’ll eat it;

10. Better to divide your meal into small portions several times a day than to have three full meals;

11. Brush your teeth after each meal so you won’t have the urge to mess up with the fresh feeling in your mouth.

Beauty sleep

While preparing for my Japanese proficiency test I read an article about sleeping cycle and it got me wondering how come I can look really good or really bad after a night of sleep without really changing my sleeping hours.. So I decided to read some stuff on the internet and besides the general advices on how to have a healthy sleep I found out that there is a sleeping cycle in equivalent of 90 minutes during which two important chemicals are working to repair the body and if a person wakes up in the middle of a cycle, he feels drowsiness and confusion.

So to get the most out of each sleeping session, it is important to calculate your sleeping time in these cycles. If the cycle is 90 minutes then the following timetable should let me feel rested and full of energy when I wake up  :

Bedtime 11:00 – Wake time 6:30, 8:00, 9:30

Bedtime 11:30 – Wake time 7:00, 8:30, 10:00

Bedtime 12:00 – Wake time 7:30, 9:00, 10:30

This time table calculates my sleeping time to be either 7.5 or 8.5 or 9.5 hours which is funny because an adult’s standard amount of sleeping time is always considered to be 8 hours…If you calculate your sleep in sleeping cycles, there is no way it is healthy to sleep exactly 8 hours. You will end up waking up in the middle of a sleeping chemical’s work which will make you feel drowsy and tired.

The other interesting facts about healthy sleep:

1. Wearing socks will help your legs from cooling down and waking you up;

2. Complete darkness is SO important for the right work of sleeping chemicals. If you go to the toilet in the middle of the night and turn on the light, the whole night’s work of those chemicals can be eliminated in one second;

3. Loud alarm clocks are really bad for health;

4. Don’t use your bed for any other activities besides sleep, hence no working or watching TV in bed;

5. Eating small portions of food 5-6 times a day is better than 3 times a day not only for sleep but for general health condition because long hours without food lowers the level of your blood sugar;

6. Avoid eating refined sugar and sugar-made sweets as it makes your blood sugar rise and then fall down again in a short period of time. Fruits and natural sugar will keep your blood sugar in a moderate condition throughout the night;

7. 20 minutes of calm state like meditation or other light exercises can help forget the excitement of the day and prepare body for sleep.

I’m going to try sleeping in cycles for two weeks and see if my body adjusts it’s bio clock to the rythm and if I’m going to feel and look better. Wish me luck! ^-^