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I like value gift sets, both as a giver and recipient. As a giver, I mix and match it with other pieces from another gift set to create a more personalized hodgepodge of brands a girl would love. As a recipient, I get to try brands at deluxe sizes which help me decide if they deserve a full-size repurchase down the line. But wouldn't you love the idea of owning or giving a value set that has full-sized products? Fab and frugal mind prancin'!

Better late than never. This gift set I am liking at the moment is part of CARGO's Mediterranean Summer Collection. But who says a full-sized blush, eyeshadow, and mascara plus deluxe- sized eyeliner and lip gloss in  gorgeous packaging and color can only be used for a particular season? Surely not moi.

Sold for only $34 at Macy's, this gift set is an $89 value (the full- sized blush alone is $26 so this set is definitely a bang for your buck!)

Throw in a foundation and you're all set, Ms. Fabulous!

I like eyeliners. They remind me of my happy childhood days with colored pencils, when doodle time meant 24/7 Crayola cray-cray. 

Fast forward 2011. As I am checking my blogs, I realized that I have rarely reviewed eye pencils. So here's an ode to my recent fave find: Prestige Classic Eyeliner.


Some people are predisposed to having dark knees and elbows, for the most part it's related to genetics. Age is also a factor. The older we get, the darker or dryer they become. Call it normal wear-and-tear: constant friction makes the skin thick and dead cells accumulate. Unless you suffer from certain skin conditions that would require treatment from your doctor, this DIY will help keep your knees and elbows look fab.

Lucky me I don't have to deal with snow and negative temperature because I'd probably be the first one to get frostbites. Freeze-to-death, not in my fabulous vocabulary. But yeah, it gets chilly too in Hawaii. As of this writing, it's 78 degrees Fahrenheit inside- okay, I see you laughing but to moi  it's akin to Alaska. 'Seems like I need to pack on more brown fats then. Tuesday (Nov 29) might be the coldest, forecasted at 66 degrees!  No way, Jose...

Save yourself from the wrath of the infamous Pepper Spray Woman. Shop online! If you snoozed on Black Friday's uber crazy deal, wake up to Cyber Monday madness! Here are some beauty offers that are sure to whet your appetite:

BH Cosmetics: 50% OFF everything
e.l.f Cosmetics: 50% OFF for $25 or more purchase with code 50WIDE
Bobbi Brown: Free shipping & 3 Mini best sellers (crystal lip gloss,  extreme party mascara, intensive skin supplement with any order. Use code HAPPY12
Clarins: Free 8-piece deluxe travel size gift set in a luxury makeup bag with $75 purchase. Use code CYBERM. On top of this, get 3 more free samples at checkout. Plus Free Shipping at $75 or more purchase.
Elizabeth Arden: Free 9-piece deluxe gift with any $40 or more purchase + Free shipping. Use code CYBER40
Stila Online Warehouse Sale: Up to 80% Off; Free Shipping with $50 purchase

Again, use your e-bates when shopping at these sites, most offer double the cash back tomorrow. In a nutshell, e-bates pay you back for shopping. For example, Bobbi Brown is offering 12% cash back for a limited time. There are no membership fees, and you will be paid back either thru check or paypal.




By the way, my blog giveaway will end soon (Win Estee Lauder makeups, feather earrings, random mix of makeups) so join if you haven't yet. Details here



Could this be the product to end my greasy woes? Tell me it is and I will cross the highest mountain to search for thee... Emo-mode, rollin'!

While it's flattering to be always mistaken for looking younger than my real age (oily skin delays onset of wrinkles), there is nothing more noteworthy with a face barraged by nonstop sebum production. Acne, visible pores, faster makeup meltdown, etc. So if you have the same skin type as mine, you'd understand why I am always in search of that elusive holy grail. 

Skin Transformer. Instant Age Rewind. Instantly vanish wrinkles, pores and imperfections. Subtle pink tint for youthful glow. Don't they all sound enticing? That's what the packaging says about Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Primer Skin Transformer so without batting an eyelash, I hurriedly put it in my shopping basket ($8.99, Target).

Are you among the blessed few who got into Sephora's website before it crashed last night? Beauty junkies gone wild! Such epic fail. I think Sephora underestimated our hunger pangs for that 10 for 10$ each Black Friday deal. This morning, I finally got in only to see those that I want to buy gone. Of course! By mid-day, Sephora issued an apology to irate customers by offering FREE SHIPPING at $25 purchase (online code SHIPNOW), a sneak peek of its Cyber Monday deals, and a free YSL compact mirror as part of its Fan Friday promotion (in limited quantities though). Now if you have e-bates, use it to get 10% cash back today. I am hoping this can be extended 'til Cyber Monday to make up for the inconvenience, eh?

Pepper Spray Woman is trending today. Nope, it's not the latest brand of perfume to hit the stores. It's about a mom from Los Angeles, CA who pepper sprayed other customers so she can get the Xbox 360 all to herself. Twenty shoppers from that ill-fated Walmart branch got injured. Over here in Hawaii, a woman claims she had been punched in the face as people got crazy with discounted towels. Horror of horrors. This Black Friday should be renamed Black Eyed Friday. That's the very reason I shop online- no mad crowd to deal with.

If you still have moolah left, here are some more Black Friday deals I got from  e-mail today. Most are running 'til Sunday or Monday....

Philosophy: Up to 50 % off Holiday Sale. Free shipping  with promo code blackfriday
The Body Shop: 3 Items for $30 (My tip: pick the most expensive item to get the most out of this promo). Excludes gift sets, gift cards and charitable items.
Macy's: Free digital video camera with $65 any perfume purchase. Free shipping at $50 for beauty & fragrance.
Ulta: 2 Day Savings (Nov 25-26) Branded makeups as low as $10

All these deals will make anyone broke, seriously.

Shop wise everyone. 

P.S. I'm on my second day of eating nothing but turkey leftovers.  Time to get creative with cooking! I'm thinking shredded adobo turkey tomorrow....

I can't believe I have been up since 8:00 am today preparing for our Thanksgiving meal! I'm no kitchen guru but one of the things that I enjoy doing is to cook for my family, especially for occasions like these. But if you ask me point blank, it is hard for me to be in a festive mood because I still grieve over my one and only uncle whose life was cut short by cardiac arrest. God knows how I try to keep myself busy to cope up from  this loneliness, sigh.

But it's Thanksgiving Day! There are still more reasons to be thankful for... a beautiful life blessed with overflowing love from my family, genuine support from select friends, the opportunity to discover and enrich my other interests, and then of course- you- my fabulous readers for letting me borrow a few minutes of your precious time by visiting and reading my blogs. Enjoy these photos...

xoxo
Kathryne

This is my last post for the day before I hit the sack and prepare for tomorrow's thanksgiving kitchen diva-ness. Ms. Turkey I'll see you in the morning.

I own about four pairs of shoes from Gojane.com so when I saw some that I have been meaning to buy on steep discount this coming Friday, November 25 2011, I thought I'd give you a heads up. *claps*


Milani Cosmetics announced thru Twitter today that they are holding- brace yourself- 50% OFF Plus FREE shipping at milanicosmetics.com on Monday, November 28 2011 at exactly 8:00 AM PST. Everything on the website is half the price, just use the code CYBER upon checkout. Woohoo, Hawaii is included in free shipping (boo to those who don't! **rants**). I'm eyeing their baked blush, glitzy glamour gloss, krackle top coat, and baked eyeshadow metallic. Hate the crowd on Black Friday? Wait for Cyber Monday!







Not all bloggers have inherent writing ability. Much as I enjoy writing, I don't claim to be a prolific writer. Many times, my poor eyesight missed a punctuation or two; or my grammar needed to be proofread. After all, to err is human. 

Spill the beans! So what makes me excited to open my inbox and spend a good five minutes (or even more) on a blog?



Don't forget to join my blog giveaway, it's happening now...


Full mechanics, click here

How about custom-designing your own shoes and have them made in front of you for less than 15 minutes? I am not talking about sky-high runway stilettos or pricey brand name shoes. If you are a fan of artsy and carved wooden wedges, then you might also fall for my recent love-at-first-sight find.




Last Friday, Sephora released its exclusive Black Friday Deal on Facebook: It's happening on November 25 2011 only- online and in stores. Here are the Fabulous Ten:

Similar to other monthly beauty or fashion subscriptions, Youtube sensation Michelle Phan recently unveiled Myglam. For $10 a month, you get 4 to 5 full-sized or deluxe makeup samples packaged in a cosmetic bag, including a video from her team of stylists: Youtube's Promise Phan, Andrea's Choice, Jessica Harlow, Macbarbie07. The process is simple, first you take the beauty quiz  (14 questions) and then sign up for a monthly or yearly subscription. You can cancel at any given time. Right now, this is available to USA residents only. It's free shipping too.

For your starter bag this month, you will get the following in time for the holidays: Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer, Urban Decay Eyeshadow (Sin), Tarte's Light Camera Lashes Mascara, NYX's Sift Matte Lip Cream, and Mai Couture's Blush Papier.

Are you signing up? 

Stay fab everyone!

Update as of Jan 23 2012. I have watched several unboxing in Youtube to see what's in January Glambag. They all received the same items except for a different color nail polish. 
Update as of Dec 1 2011. So I took the quiz three times with completely different answers to see if it has something to do with what you will get from the mail. It looks like the first month's samples are generic to all regardless of your quiz result or profile. I wonder if the customization will take place in the succeeding months. Did I subscribe? Nope. Not yet. I have all these products in my stash.
Update as of Dec 2 2011. Per Myglam's Facebook announcement, subscription is temporarily on freeze mode. All boxes were sold out until further notice.

I hate early morning calls. I get nervous for some reasons. Last Saturday proved this fear. My only uncle whom I consider like a second father succumbed to heart attack. My mom was hysterical and crying over the phone, they were the closest among three siblings. I was in utter disbelief. We were just facebooking the other day! God knows I have not cried and grieved this much since the passing of my grandpa in 2000. And no matter how we view death as our ultimate destination, nobody will ever be prepared with death from a loved one. Not this sudden. Not this year. Not even next year. He seemed to be in tiptop shape. At 58 years young, his physique can rival any man twenty years his junior.

After a week of practically no makeup due to my being lazy and sick (fever and flu), I'm feeling so much better today. And what's a girl gotta do? Hello makeup!!!

Every year, I don't miss buying this most anticipated holiday makeup set from Estee Lauder. Let me tell you why....

Eyeshadows, Lipsticks, Lipglosses, Eyeliners
Makeup Remover, Brush sets, Clutch and more...

Aloha my fellow 808-beauties! If you are free this weekend, check out these two exciting events happening at Ala Moana Center.

About two weeks ago, I tweeted that my skin broke out (4 huge pimples in 2 days!) after trying out this wonder product. Geez, this is what I get for being a guinea pig. If you have oily and acne-prone skin, you can understand my predicament for hunting the best brand around to solve this lifelong issue. Not to discredit the culprit, but now I understand that Clarins Beauty in a Flash Balm isn't ideal for my skin type. It might work best for normal and dry skin; or maybe there is something in the ingredients that just didn't seem right for me.

So I reached out to my treatment-of-choice-as-of-this-writing, salicylic acid (DDF). Three days of nightly treatment, combined with a toner that also contains salicylic acid, boom! These mammoth bumps were completely dry. 

Next issue to tackle? The aftermath. Dark pigmentation a.k.a pimple marks. Surely, these can be camouflaged by caking on concealer but do you want to know what really helped fade these blemishes?






You won't miss her endearing smile, creative makeup skills, and down-to-earth personality on Youtube. Meet our Featured Fab Blogger, Tali of oxoxtali.com


Get to know more Tali, and what she does when not blogging....

I will soon be reviewing a line of glycolic acid from skin-peel.com. To most of you who have been following my blog, you are probably aware that I still experience adult acne, my utmost waterloo. In a separate blog, I briefly mentioned AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) and its benefits to rough and sun-damaged skin. Glycolic acid is a naturally-ocurring fruit acid from AHA and is widely used as a main cosmetic ingredient.  Depending on the brand and concentration, glycolic acid at-home treatment can be quite pricey. 

I am in the process of coordinating my skin issues with the company-assigned skin consultant. I will surely document this progress for you my fellow skin enthusiasts! I can't wait to end my ordeal with acne, open pores and oiliness!



FTC: Samples will be sent to me for review by skin-peel.com through Sheblogs.org





In the next days or so, I will hunt for the best holiday gift sets pegged at a certain amount. For this post, we are looking at $25 or less sets that are sold in department stores or exclusive beauty retail shops. These are definitely eye candies! They are ideal as stocking stuffers or exchange gifts- something a makeup junkie would like to have...

I am getting into this whole beauty-couponing saga lately so with my recent trip to Target, I was smitten with the Revlon Just Bitten ($8.99) frenzy. To be honest, I am not a big fan of lip stains as I find them unflattering, especially if you have dry lips. But with my $2 off coupon, I want to try this once and for all.



I am always in search of long-wearing foundations, a challenge for those with gifted-slash-cursed oily skin like mine (oily skin delays wrinkles but is prone to breakouts and lightning-speed makeup meltdown). As a makeup enthusiast, I advise to invest on a foundation that delivers flawless finish with commendable staying power- which for the most part is a trial and error experience.

In my ultimate quest for that holy grail, I purchased Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup (Nordstrom, $35) a couple of weeks ago. Double Wear, Stay in Place. Here we go again with marketing words meant to entice a makeup junkie. This foundation is supposed to last for 15 hours, as explained by the sales associate. Realistically speaking, anything that lasts for more than eight hours to me without obvious sign of oxidation (makeup turns dark or orangey after some time due to skin's oiliness) is good enough. Note to self and everyone, I am an oil tanker, yay!

Meet our Featured Fab Blogger, Vee Gilbert, Owner and Chief Editor of Dimeonadime.com
I have been following Vee's blog for a while now because of her magical ability to transform thrift finds to something uber fabulous!




Find out more about the lady who juggles a day job, family life, and blogging....

And so here I am in my sick bed (nursing a flu and slightly feverish) surfing for holiday online deals.  Have you started your holiday shopping already? 'thought I share with you these irresistible offers...

ulta.com

From Ulta:
Free Shipping on online orders at $25 or more. Use code HOLIDAYSHP25
Buy 1 Get 1 50% Off: Revlon, L'Oreal, Maybelline, John Freida



Get these for only $10 at sephora.com
I woke up with an itchy throat today and was planning to film a holiday makeup look. The mind wills it but the body won't cooperate. Sigh. Hopefully this won't progress to flu and fever. To combat this "poor-me-I'm-getting-sick" syndrome, I decided to play with these beauties I received from the mail yesterday. I bought these nail polishes (plus makeups) from sephora.com


Meet our Featured Fab Blogger from Finland, Pauliina of NailPolishTastic.blogspot.com. 


Pauliina is a 19 year-old cosmetology student who loves everything makeup and beauty-related, most especially nails! She has two Youtube Channels: Samettinen and Kauneusgurusi (the last one is in Finnish). 
Get to know more Pauliina, here is our chit chat...

**Dec 10 2011**: Scroll down below to see the winner or see this post for full details, click here.

Wow, it's been a year now since I ventured into blogging! To celebrate this milestone, I am hosting a Blog Giveaway! The prizes are Estee Lauder makeups, handmade feather earrings (I did myself), and random mix of makeups from my growing collection, awww! I am using Rafflecopter's system so make sure you that you follow all the rules (I don't like to disqualify you). This ends on December 9 2011.

Estee Lauder + some more makeups from my collection





If you read the "About me" section of this blog, I mentioned being a Mother Theresa to friends. I don't know if it's a good thing that friends seem to remember me most when they are dealing with drama or need favors here and there. Hence, the moniker. 

Griping aside, the most frequent women talk dwells on break-up! What to do to get over it? Like makeups, you need to personally experience it before you can make a judgement or offer an advise (such analogy babe!). Nobody is immune from pain resulting from a break- up. But there is a limit when to stop wailing! I hope these little tips can help you ease the pain and get back to your old fab self, ok?







November marks my first anniversary in blogging. As part of my month-long celebration, I am opening my humble blog to feature beauty and fashion bloggers around the world. I must admit, I have met amazing bloggers online who enjoy the same passion as mine. Cheers to all fabulous women!

As I write this announcement, I am in awe to see sharp increase in my daily or weekly views. My top ten audience come from these countries: USA, United Kingdom, Ukraine, Philippines, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, India, Netherlands, Singapore. I would be more than glad to feature international bloggers! After all, beauty knows no boundaries.

To be my featured blogger, you only need to be an active beauty or fashion blogger. Other points of interest might also be considered as long as your blog content more or less compliment mine. An active blogger means: you host your own blog and you post on a regular basis (at least once a week).


If you are selected, a Q & A format will be sent to you (focusing on your interests, inspirations, and other information you are comfortable to share). Your blog's banner or logo (with a direct link) will be included in a separate page that I am putting up to feature bloggers-around-the-globe.


If this sounds interesting to you, email me at fabulouskath@hotmail.com (fabulouskath at hotmail dot com) ,and include a link to your blog. I can't wait to feature you!


xoxo
Kathryne








Have you ever been in a situation where you want to say some things to your girl friend/s but can't because you don't want to hurt her feelings? Or to an acquaintance but afraid to be branded as snotty? I have witnessed a lot but I can only recall one courageous moment in my life, and that involved a very dear friend who knows that I don't like stray eyebrow hairs, hahaha!

For the life of me, I want to get this out of my chest. As a woman of substance, never ever be caught with these grooming 101 failures. Remember, this is not about being vain. It is simply a big don't!

1. Stray eyebrow hairs. Please my friends, I beg thee! I am no expert in eyebrows but one thing that distracts me from your beautiful face are those stray hairs that make you look like Mrs. Hulk. Stray eyebrow hair among teenagers is understandable. But when you reach the age of maturity, there is no excuse not to pluck those! If you are adamant shaping yours for the first time, visit your salon for threading services. Then include a tweezer in your next shopping list. As soon as you see new hair growth, pluck it for maintenance.

2. Hair coming out of nostrils. When was the last time you checked yourself in the mirror? Being busy with household is definitely not an excuse to cut those hairs peeking out. And I really mean it. Borrow your husband's tiny grooming scissors if you don't have one. It is never a trend, and it will never be.

3. Stray hairs along bikini line. If you have watched Sex and the City 2, you'd probably recall a scene where Miranda's bushy-hair-down-there was ridiculed by the ever vain Samantha. I am not saying to be bikini-ready 24/7. But by all means- when you know you are donning a bathing suit anytime soon: shave, wax, laser- whatever manner you choose, just do it. There are things you'd rather keep to yourself, eh?!

4. Unkempt toe nails. I will skip hands because I totally understand how it can be hard for us women to keep our nails in perfect condition. I have days when I can't simply do my mani! But when was the last time you cut your toe nails? Or try to remove those dirt trapped in between? Dirty toe nails are the real deal that you really don't care about grooming. 

5. Body odor. This is a rather personal issue, and a lot of times is an indication of underlying sickness such those with halitosis. I am not Cruella Deville so I would rather not touch on this issue with a raised eyebrow. But as a general rule, brush teeth after meals please... or use underarm deodorant pretty please!










Here are hard-to-resist beauty deals I found today:

Urban Decay

Urban Decay is running a 20% OFF for friends and family. Grab Naked Palette or even those that are already on sale! How about a regular- sized eye primer for only 8$? Use code FFHOLIDAY11. Free shipping for $50 worth of purchase. Promotion is active between Nov 1- Nov 5 2011 only.


eyeslipsface.com

e.l.f. is running a 40% off at eyeslipsface.com for the holidays. Start buying presents for your beauty junkie friends and loved ones. Use code GIFTFAVES for $25 purchase. This ends on November 7 2011.





Laura Geller on Hautelook


Find Laura Geller at HauteLook. Lipsticks that normally retail for $18 are on sale at $10.50; beauty sets at $60 go for $36. Don't miss this chance because this exclusive sale at Hautelook runs for a very limited time. See complete selections here








What are your recent beauty must-haves? Here are mine:




Having oily and acne-prone skin, I am always in search of new products that can somehow manage my issues. Lately, I'm trying to simplify my skincare routine so I settled for salicylic acid-based products. Known as an effective exfoliant, salicylic acid removes dead skin cells and residues that are trapped in between pores. These clogged pores lead to blackheads, whiteheads and pimples. Oil and shine also emphasize pores. 

Wash: I scrub my face gently for 10 seconds then rinse with water.
Tone: After I wash my face, I use this as my toner. It helps control
shine and remove residues


For occasional breakouts, I tried DDF, a sample I received from Sephora as a Beauty Insider. This product has 1.5% salicylic acid. Please note that too much salicylic acid application can lead to over-drying of skin. To address this, I use an oil-free moisturizer in the morning.

I apply this at night. My pimple dried up after 3 days.

For makeups, again, I want to simplify my routine. So it helps if a product is a multi-tasker. I find Philosophy's foundation skin-friendly. It is natural-based with built-in moisturizer and SPF. For a separate review on this brand, click here


This is a hybrid tinted moisturizer-slash-foundation.
It is lightweight and gives natural-looking coverage.


Again, one of my problems is open pores. To address it aesthetically, I turn to Clinique Pore Refining Solutions. I use this before I apply foundation. 

With a pea-size, I apply this where pores are prominent.
Cheeks and nose in my case.

To make my foundation last, I use pressed powder where I produce oil the most! (cheeks, nose, forehead). I originally got 100% Pure as a bronzer but found that the shade (Honey) too light to work as such so I used it as my pressed powder. 

How cute is this tin packaging? This brand is 100% all-natural.
It is made from cocoa, coffee, tomato and berries. Yum!
For more info, click here

For my blush-on, I am loving Cargo's Catalina. The shade is light-pink which gives a uber-healthy glow.

Lovely shade it is!

For lips, I have been constantly using these two beauties:

I like how LORAC lip gloss turns my drab lips to fab, yay!


I like e.l.f.'s studio line of lipsticks. It can rival some department store brands
in terms of quality at a fraction of the cost. This shade is Bare Brown.


Lastly, for my hair (which has a mind of its own most of the time), I strive to make it look and feel soft with a leave-in conditioner. I use Aussie Hair Insurance. I spritz my hair with this product when it's still damp and let it air-dry after.



Here's the video version and some bloopers to make you smile today. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9QWQEn72SGg





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