My favourite hair treatment everrr (that actually works)

Beauty, Hair

Hola amigos!

Oh my lawd I need to resume my Spanish class so I can learn a bit more than ‘amigos’ HAHAHA. I’m finally doing a review post on probably of one Singapore’s BEST salons ever. This salon is full of natural herbs and traditional beauty techniques that has been my go-to beauty parlour for the past 4 years. I mean I literally grew up with these beauticians by my side. I’m talking about Rupini’s.

& no, they have no idea that I’m even doing up this blog post… I just decided to do this review because the ingredients and techniques used  here are really gimmick-free and I strongly encourage girls (and guys and tourists even) to drop by.

Rupinis is best known for their eyebrow threading technique. Its super affordable at 7 bucks per session (I heard they will be charging 9 bucks now but hey its still cheaper and better than most brow bars). Threading is much more precise (than waxing) and comparatively less painful (than plucking). Since there are sooo many good reviews on Rupini’s eyebrow threading service available on the net, I decided to do a review on one of their other besttttt services – hair treatment.

rupinis oil treatment

Introducing my favourite hair mask in the entire worldddddddd… the Shirupini Hot Oil Head Massage (SGD 45). Shirupini is a patented hair care concoction of herbals oils that smells so good and works miracles. I’m very careful of the hair treatments I choose because ordinary treatments with chemicals in them tend to strip your hair’s natural oils. There is really nothing like a traditional herbal treatment to bring live to your hair, especially if your hair is dry and coarse like mine (Indian genes, I’m looking at you)

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The first ingredient on the list is Chembaruthi oil which I googled and found it to be red hibiscus juice which promotes hair shine and growth. I also discovered that white pepper (you read that right) is great to kill bacteria on the scalp and promote shine too. Curry leaves is another interesting ingredient… obviously yummy to eat but for the hair it actually prevents premature aging and greying of hair due to its ability to strenghten hair follicles – who’d have known?!

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After a bloody good scalp massage to get the oil well soaked into the hair strands and scalp, I had to sit under this satellite looking thingy for about 15-20 mins. Its basically a hot steamer to further ensure that my hair drinks up the herbal oils. I’m covering my face in this picture because I was falling asleep after that awesome head massage and my eyes were all droopy.

Behind me you can see 2 ladies who are getting their eyebrows done. No matter what time or day it is, there there is ALWAYS someone getting his/her eyebrows done. Of late, I’ve noticed quite a number of Chinese guys at Rupinis to get their eyebrows threaded too. That’s just out of this world because a) Rupinis is obviously based on Indian techniques b) boys in such a salon is indeed a rare sight. The very fact that most of Rupini’s customers come from all walks of life shows just how reliable their services are. 

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After a crazily good shampoo scrub and conditioning and my hair was nicely blown dry and somewhat straight, I took a selfie with this beautiful lady who has been doing my hair for 4 years now – her name is Ah Wei and she has amazing beauty technique. I love how after 4 years we are almost friends!

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Heres a shot of all the beauticians present that day. From left to right: Swapna, Shruti, Ah Wei and Kalleshwasi. Kalleshwasi did my oil treatment that particular day and despite her being a rather new addition to the Rupinis family, she is soooo well trained. It is clear that all of them take much pride in their work. With great quality products and excellent service, although I find their services on the pricey side, they are well worth it for a monthly or bi-weekly dose of pampering. My only disappointment is that they usually are so busy that they don’t dry your hair completely after the shampoo… but I guess that can’t be helped on busy days!

Like I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve been doing this head oil treatment/ massage for 4 years now. However, I stopped going for about a year last year because I was too busy and caught up with work. Now that I’ve been going back, my hair is very very much softer to touch and appears much healthier. I have considered purchasing the Shirupini oil which is also sold in a bottle (SGD 43-45) but the thing is that I know it works much better when it is professionally massaged and steamed. Still, I do plan to purchase a bottle soon, just because it really is that good. Yay to traditional Indian hair treatments – no wonder bollywood actresses always have such luscious hairrrrrr!

In my first 3 years of visiting this salon, I’d always go to the outlet at Little India because I love its traditional interior. When they closed for renovation for 6 months, I had to go to the Holland Village outlet instead (which is equally beautiful, just more modern in its design). Speaking of which, the renovation at the Little India outlet has been completed and they are having an opening launch this weekend. I believe they are re-naming this newly renovated branch as ‘Rupini’s Om‘. Can’t wait to see the new treatments they have prepared for us!

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Frizz Party: Which Product Did I Return/ Keep?

Beauty, Hair

living proof nourishing styling cream vs alterna caviar cc cream review

It has been a real frizz parade here in Singapore (and I believe in many other parts of the world) where the humidity is just destroying our crowns of glory. Initially, I thought it was only me who was suffering from a recent epidemic of the Overwhelming Crazy Frizz (OVF) (…I just made that up). However, after paying close attention to other ladies on the street, I realized that most people have been facing the same problem as I have as the temperature and humidity levels soar. Let’s be honest – no one likes frizzy hair. Personally, I hate it because I have A LOT of hair so it being frizzy really makes me look like a lion.

So I have been experimenting with several frizz control products of late and have come across a certain disastrous product which I promptly returned within 24 hours. Not sure if you have made a correct guess already – but it was the Living Proof Nourishing Styling Cream that I returned.

Why did I purchase the Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream?

I wanted a cream/ gel like product to tame my frizz so that my hair can have some kind of body to it without looking like a hot mess. This styling cream claimed to do this on the back of the bottle. (read below: Eliminate frizz by blocking humidity, smooth and condition without weighing hair down, repel dirt to keep hair cleaner, longer)

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What did the Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream really do to my hair?

✘ Frizz was down and the surface of my hair felt smooth for about 15 minutes. After that, the amount of frizz tripled to its original amount and my hair quality looked a lot worse than it actually is. It seemed like the humidity really got into it – and got into it really fast. This product certainly was not able to block humidity like it claimed it would, but really just aggravated the negative effects of humidity.

✘It made my hair feel slightly heavy and weighed down.

Overall Rating – 0 stars (this is probably the first time I’m giving any product 0.)

I just HAD to return this product because it did not do anything that it claimed it would. My hair was rough as if just put on some low quality wax and I felt so uncomfortable with it that I just had to wash it ASAP.

Another product that I picked up the Alterna Caviar CC Cream after reading many overwhelmingly positive reviews from YouTubers.

Why did I purchase the Alterna Caviar CC Cream?

I was looking for a leave in treatment to go with my amazing Moroccanoil Treatment (review here) just for some extra lovin’ for my stressed tresses.  The 10 claims from this product really did blow my mind especially since so many YouTubers say that most of these claims are actually valid.

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What did the Alterna Caviar CC Cream really do to my hair?

When I put it while my hair is wet, I do feel that my hair is slightly less frizzy and definitely much softer to touch once it is dry. This is when I use this in combination with the Moroccanoil Treatment. The reason why the Alterna CC Cream cannot be used on it own (like many other leave-in hair conditioners) is because it containts alcohol that dries out your hair… So using such a cream with a heavily moisturizing product is essential to balance the oils.

When I put this cream onto my dry hair, it also does visibly reduce the frizz and my hair also immediately does feel softer to touch. My hair does not feel weighed down with this product.

HOWEVER, I’ve been using the Caviar CC Cream for about 2-3 weeks on a daily basis now and the improvement to my hair quality has not been massive. My frizz is still very much there… but I would say that this CC cream has probably helped in improving my hair’s texture by about 20% which is better than nothing.

Overall Rating – 3.5 stars

alterna caviar cc cream review

Overall, the winner is definitely Alterna. Great job Katie Holmes… and sorry Jennifer Aniston. I really wanted to like Living Proof but it just didn’t work with the humidity issue.

I really think that Alterna wasn’t able to impress me greatly either because of the alcohol ingredient in it. Many hair experts urge us to not use hair products with alcohol as it can dry out your hair, especially if your hair is already a dry type. Whilst you can balance this by using a second product which is oil based, it can be tedious. Nevertheless, I will be continuing to use my Alterna Caviar CC Cream together with my Moroccanoil leave-in Treatment as they seem to go well together.

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JOSIE MARAN ARGAN BALM: YAY OR NAY?

Hair, Skincare

josie maran argan balm review

For Mother’s Day last weekend, I purchased Josie Maran’s Argan Balm for my mum who has super dry skin. I heard soooo many great reviews on how this is a miracle repair for dry skin. However, I decided to try it on my hair because the back of the tin says it can also be used to tame frizz and you must know that frizz is my number 1 beauty problem.

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I love how the texture of this is really unique… a bit waxy a bit creamy and dissolves into a semi-liquid state when the heat of your hand goes to it. I found this texture really perfect for hair styling. The best part about this Argan Balm is that there are no preservatives added which is obviously always a great thing. What’s even better is the results…

josie maran argan balm before application

Here’s how my natural hair looks like. Frizzy and wavy and aplenty – which is why my boyfriend calls me a lion. Pardon my naked face and geeky spectacles, its my stay at home day today (ok thats a lie I have a meeting in the evening ARGH. but ya no make up till later.)

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Above is how my hair looked like after a pea sized amount was applied. Isn’t it just aaaah-mazing?!?? My hair became glossy, bouncy, the colour was so much more vibrant, and most importantly frizz was reduced by about 80% which is really a big deal. I loved that it didn’t weight my hair down either and had a light hold for hours.

I imagine myself using a lot of this present that I got my mum… Okay maybe I shouldn’t be a brat and just purchase another tub for myself but dammit its so expensive. I wish they would sell a smaller version of this (consequentially cheaper) because really a little bit of product goes a long way.

Although this post focuses on how well this product works on hair, it goes without saying how awesome the argan balm works on dry patches on the skin!

This is my first Josie Maran experience and I LOVE THIS PRODUCT SO MUCH AH MA GARD. ITS DEFINITELY A YAY FOR ME!

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Beauty BFF: Organic Coconut Oil

Beauty, Hair, Skincare

I thought I was using the right coconut oil the past few years… but I was gravely wrong. The coconut oil you should be purchasing is the organic type which is white in colour and mainly solid when stored in air-con temperature. I couldn’t comprehend the rave about coconut oil when I was using the normal yellowish oily coconut oil – plainly because I didn’t notice any difference it was making to my skin. Once I purchased the right one a few weeks ago, I finally understood – organic coconut oil is my new beauty bff.

Although many bloggers advise to store it in a warm place so it isn’t solid during application, I prefer to store my organic coconut oil in the fridge as I love how the cold white solids melt from the heat of my face. It cools me down, removes my makeup effortlessly and moisturizes all at the very same time.

1. DIY Lip/Facial Scrub

It is important to scrub your lip 2-3 times a week to keep them looking pinkish and healthy. This scrub also works wonders for the face, but keep your facial scrubs less frequent as it may cause irritation if it is done too often.

  • Brown sugar (it is less coarse than the ordinary white sugar)
  • Freshly squeezed lemon
  • Organic coconut oil

*Change to quantity of the ingredients as you would prefer.

2. Natural makeup remover

This is literally the CHEAPEST and the BEST makeup remover ever. I love how it works even better than my most expensive removers from luxury brands. Rubbing the hard and cold oil in circular motions on your face and eye area will almost instantaneously remove your make up without drying your face. You will have to use your normal facial soap to remove the oil once you’re done. The results will be amazing…

To share my personal experience, I used to wake up every morning to extremely dry skin at my chin and mouth area. Once I replaced my standard makeup remover with organic coconut oil, my face is visibly supple in my morning. I. LOVE. IT. I guarantee you will have no regrets investing in the 15dollar tub (which I purchased from NTUC Finest, if you were wondering)

3. Dandruff solution

Massing this amazing oil in your scalp with a few teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon will give immense moisture to your dry scalp. After just one application, I noticed the results. As compared to other oils which are difficult to wash off, coconut oil washes off rather easily after a good shampoo massage.

4. Night skin moisturizer

Massaging some of this into your skin at night will produce amazing results after your morning shower. It works especially well on dry cuticles and dry feet. Try it to believe it!

All in all, your organic coconut oil purchase is bound to save you hundreds of dollars that you currently spend on beauty products. You just have to take that leap of faith and place a tub of organic coconut oil into your cart the next time you go grocery shopping!

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Hair Styling Essentials

Beauty, Hair

I hope you’re prepared for a pictures and reviews filled post – because today I will be sharing my 4 staple products for everyday hair styling. I have been having this hair style for about 7 years now and I frequently get compliments for it so you might like to try it out too!

I will be going through the following hair products in today’s post:

  • Braun Satin Hair 7
  • Tony and Guy Hair Protection Mist (Anti Static Control)
  • Remington Pearl Pro Hair Straightener
  • Moroccanoil Hair Treatment

BRAUN SATIN HAIR 7

Satin-Hair Brush

This brush is truly as glamorous and cool as how this advertorial portrays it to be. I got this as a Christmas present after hinting to my partner about it. It is slightly on the pricey side (available for about 50 bucks at courts) for a brush. However, this is definitely more than an ordinary brush. It’s ionic technology helps to reduce static or fly away hair. No, it does not do much for frizz, but it leaves your hair feeling soft and does a great job at untangling even the most disastrous mane. I adore how the brush tips are not too pokey yet not to soft and gives my scalp an amazing feeling when brushing.

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This brush only works on dry hair, so I usually blow or air dry my hair before using it. I even have a name for this brush – Stacey (with the ‘e’). I bring Stacey everywhere I go in her pretty wooly pouch which I found in Daiso. It instantaneously makes my hair look more presentable especially when I have last minute meeting to attend.

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The brush lights up in a luminous green once its switched on (battery operated) and the ions will be released from a little green hole at the back of the comb (pictured above). Super cool, I tell you! I love a product that not only looks this awesome but actually does a good job – and is also practical. The brush tips are easily removable for washing (pictured below).

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As you can see from the picture above. my hair remains in its usual frizzy state- please do not expect this product to do anything for your frizz. Frizz can only be controlled with hair masks, treatments and oils which I will also be sharing under my beauty-hair category. Its ionic technology only promises to smoothen the feel of your hair and to it look much neater due to less flyaway and static hair.

PROS

  • Reduces flyaway and static hair
  • Easy on the scalp
  • Easy to dismantle for washing
  • Super innovative

CON

  • I wish it was slightly smaller so I can fit it into my smaller bags

4.5 stars


TONY AND GUY HAIR PROTECTION MIST

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If you style your hair as frequently as me (2-3 times a week), then you should most definitely get a heat protection mist. I have tried really expensive brands that come in the form of a serum that you apply before using any heat on your hair – don’t. ever. purchase. a. serum. base. heat. protector. It tends to be extremely oily and weighs your hair down and and and and its just horribleeeee. I swear when you use a serum base protector, sometimes you can hear “sssiiiizzzzzzzzz” when you try to straighten you hair – as if you’ve just thrown in an egg on a frying pan. It’s freaky.

That’s why I have stuck to T&G hair mist – its extremely light weight and does a great job at reducing any post-styling hair static. It also visibly prevents your hair from frying. Most importantly, its half the price of such serum based protectors.  Definitely, hands down – a staple product that every girl should have.

5 stars


REMINGTON PEARL PRO HAIR STRAIGHTENER

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Previously, I had an ISO hair straightener for 6 full years and it was my most prized beauty possession before it died 2 months ago. It was a true beauty with sleek titanium plates and pink tattooed handles.. but when it retired, I couldn’t bring myself to fork out another 350 bucks for it. Yes – it cost me SGD 350 (selling online for USD 300) when I was only a poor undergrad. I had to buy it though – during the try out it was so good that even as it straightened/curled my hair, I couldn’t really feel the plates against my hair because the titanium plates were just THAT smooth.

Here’s a picture of my ex-lover. If you’re feeling rich and you’re in need of one of the world’ best hair straighteners (IMO) then you should check it out.

I found a hair straightener that is arguably AS GOOD, and for ONE TENTH the price. Yes, 1/10 the price of the ISO straightener. The only thing that this cheap alternative lacks is the smoothness of the titanium plates which I cannot deny, did disappoint me initially. I got over it after using it a few times when I realized that it styles as well – if not – better, then the ISO product.

I’m talking about the amazing Remington Pearl Pro Flat Iron. I came across this product online when I saw thousands of girls gushing over it on Youtube and I knew I had to get it to replace my dead straightener. Unfortunately, it was selling at a whooping SGD 179 at Mustafa which I could not accept because I know it retails for about USD 30 in the States. So, I got it on ebay from an American seller… it reached me 2 weeks after, in a plain cardboard box. I was appalled. The first thing that struck me was ‘oh no, I got a fake’ It didnt seem right because hey I paid USD 50 for it and the original sells for USD 30 in the States so why did I get sent a fake when I paid more for it?!? I’m still confused. I used it anyway and it was AWESOME. It sure does not perform like a fake. Besides the plain brown box (instead of the usual original box), nothing about this straightener seems fake it me. It works like a dream.

Either ways, I intend to order this item again from the main Remington products website in US so that I will be sent the authentic version. I mean, if the fake can work this well, I can’t even begin to imagine how the authentic one would be.

Does anyone know how I can check if my item is a fake because I really really don’t think it is, despite its dubious looking plain box!

FEATURES

  • 1” Pearl Ceramic plates
  • 450 degree F digital salon high heat
  • 15 second heat up time
  • Digital display controls with turbo boost
  • Floating Plate
  • Temperature control lock
  • 60 minute auto shut off

PROS

  • Very affordable
  • heats up SO quickly
  • easy to adjust heat
  • reduces frizz to a large extent
  • curls as perfectly as it straightens
  • Swivel cord which doesn’t allow the wire to tangle (best feature ever)
  • The design of the wand allows it to produce perfect curls as it has rather rounded edges (another awesome feature!)

CON

  • I prefer titanium plates to ceramic as it is smoother, less friction with hair strands

4.5 stars


MOROCCANOIL TREATMENT

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I use this serum after I’m done styling my hair – it adds shine and removes every last frizz to perfection. I’m also in love with its smell – it’s simply divine. There are lotsssss of reviews on this product… increasingly negative because of its hefty price (about SGD 80 for this small bottle). However, I am not daunted by the price because this small bottle has been with me for about 8 months now and I’ve only used up one fifth of it despite using it every alternate day! Totally worth the price, if you ask me.

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Here’s how my hair looks like after using my Remington Pearl to produce some curls at the bottom half and the Moroccan oil to add shine and eliminate frizz. Such a huge difference as compared to the very first picture that showed my natural hair after brushing right?! Magic.

PROS

  • Eliminates frizz
  • Provides shine that lasts for up to 6 hours
  • Protects and nourishes your hair when it is left on (works like a leave in conditioner)
  • Smells great

CONS

  • I wish the shine it provides would last for longer
  • Be careful to not use more than a pea-sized amount as a little goes a long way with this product. Usage of more than necessary will weigh down your hair and might be too oily.

4.5 stars


Oookay, this has been a looong post so kudos to you if you managed to read through it! & here’s a selfie to show the front view of the entire finished results after using all the 4 reviewed products

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(For those who are curious, I’m using 3 basic products on my face: Laneige BB cushion, Maybelline Hypersharp Liner and Dior Addict Lip Glow)

Thanks for reading, chicas!

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