I feel so honored that MissisG kindly passed this award to me. Of course, my blog is far from awesome right now, but this mention certainly made my day. MissisG has been so amazingly sweet with me so far and has made me feel so welcome in this community. Thank you :)

The rules say:

1 Post about the award and copy the rules
2 Link to the person who gave you the award
3 Choose 3-5 blogs you would like to give the award to and link them
4 Leave a comment on their blog to let them know
5 Write 7 things about yourself

Three bloggers that I would pass this award to are:
  • Sandra from 15 steps, then a beauty blog. I have been watching her reviews and tutorials on her youtube channel for a while, and I have recently discovered her blog and I absolutely love her style. She is not only beautiful, but she's also graceful and so articulate.
  • Elle from Inside Out Elle is also a youtuber and she shares my interest in Asian beauty products, so I love all her videos. Her reviews are very thorough  and she's absolutely precious.
  • I am a big fan of Benefit cosmetics and I follow their blog. All their posts are not only super cute and fun, but they are also informative as they give you tips and tricks on how to make the most out of your makeup. 

And 7 things about me? These are going to be a bit random, but here they are:

1. As I said in my very first post, I am a graduate student pursuing a PhD because I would like to be a college professor one day. 

2. My friends tell me I'm like a fish because I am constantly drinking some sort of beverage. If I don't have a few sips of water or juice every 10 minutes I start getting really cranky, so I always carry a bottle of water with me everywhere.

3. I speak 4 languages fluently: English, Korean, Spanish and French.

4. My favorite flowers are peonies, yet I have never bought them just because they are so expensive!

5. I am chronically unhappy with my hair. If it's short, I want it to be long. When it's long, I want it short. I get bangs, and I hate them. I grow them out, and I want them short again. I guess that's how most girls are... right?

6.  I love doing yoga.

7. I absolutely adore my furry friends, otherwise known as Nena and Mia :)

e & h

Friday breakfast

Steel cut oatmeal + raisins + 1 banana + flaxseed + slivered almonds.

The weekend is almost here!

e & h


Skincare: Winter 2011


I keep my morning routine quite simple. I wash my face with a little bit of Philosophy Purity Made Simple, a very gentle cleanser that leaves my skin feeling clean and soft. Then I tone my skin with Kiehl's Rare Earth Pore Refining Tonic. I don't think it has reduced the size of my pores, but it contains Amazonian White Clay, which does help control oil. Then, I use Kiehl's Abyssine eye cream+ and depending on how my skin is feeling, I will either use Kiehl's Abyssine cream+ SPF 23 or Aveeno's Ultra-Calming daily moisturizer SPF 15. The one from Kiehls' is great for the colder months, but I'll be using the Aveeno moisturizer more as the weather starts getting warmer. Either way, I add a few drops of my sunscreen since I like to have some more sun protection during the day- Lancome Bienfait UV SPF 50+ Super Fluid.


At night I spend some more time getting my face clean and I use fancier creams. I am a firm believer of cleansing oils to take makeup off, and I have been using them religiously for 5 years. I currently use the DHC Mild Touch Cleansing Oil, but unfortunately this turned out to be quite disappointing. I decided to try it since it was on sale, but my all-time favorite is Shu uemura high performance balancing cleansing oil (I use the pink one called "fresh," which is recommended for oily/combination skin). DHC's oil has a very strong scent, is slightly irritating around the eyes (even though it's supposed to be "mild") and has more of a gel-like texture instead of being an oil.

After I take my makeup off, I usually exfoliate using my Clarisonic Mia with some Philosophy Purity Made Simple cleanser. About once a week, I use the Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser for a deeper exfoliation. I have found that my skin gets irritated if I use it more often than that, and I might try something gentler once I run out of this. About twice a week, I also exfoliate my lips with the Lush Lip Scrub in Bubblegum, which is super yummy and leaves my lips feeling super smooth and soft. I apply a thick layer of Aquaphor afterwards and I feel like I have Angelina Jolie's lips when I wake up in the morning...well, that might be a slight exaggeration, but still, they feel nice.

After cleansing, I tone my skin with SK-II Facial Treatment Essence. Then I apply 2 drops of Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate all over my face. Even though this is an oil, it doesn't make me breakout and I find it very hydrating. Then I dot my face with a pea-sized amount of Kiehl's Abyssyne cream+ (without the SPF) and apply Shiseido Benefiance Concentrated Anti-Wrinkle Eye Cream. I love all of these products and will probably re-purchase or purchase the full size (the eye cream is a deluxe sample) once I ran out.

e & h

About my skin

I wish I had my mother's genes, who happens to have freakishly nice skin. She never had problems with her skin and doesn't have one wrinkle at 52 years old. Me, on the other hand, have suffered from acne since I was 11 years old. It was never severe, but I still have scars and due to my oily skin I have large pores around my nose and in my forehead. I am now 26 years old and I want to start introducing some anti-aging products because, you know, I plan on aging "gracefully." However, I still get breakouts quite often, which is so unfair because really, you should either have pimples or wrinkles, not both!

In the past year I have been noticing that my skin is not as oily as it used to be, and that it gets dehydrated more easily and is even dry on some areas. To my surprise I have found that using a more gentle and thicker cream not only solves this problem, but it also helped with my acne to a certain extent. I have since started looking into age-prevention skincare and have found some really good products that you might interest you if you have the same concerns and skin type as mine.

I am really passionate about skincare, and I am planning to do many, many posts on the products I'm using in different seasons. I hope you enjoy them and that you find them useful.

e & h


Sunday breakfast

2 egg whites + 1 yolk over ezekiel 4:9 toast, black coffee.

I wish a great Monday and rest of the week!

e & h


Fresh faced makeup

This is a 5-minute makeup routine that helps you look more awake and polished, so it's great for school, lazy days or brunch with friends. Enjoy!

1. Apply a moisturizer with SPF on your clean face. Pin your hair back so it's out of the way.

2. Use a light undereye concealer around your eye area (don't forget your brow bone) and blend well using your fingers.

3. Mix a liquid highlighter with some tinted moisturizer. Apply where you need coverage and blend well. If you have any blemishes you can cover those spots with a concealer.

4. If you get oily throughout the day like me, lightly dust some face powder on your T-zone, nose and chin with a brush. We are going for a dewy look so try not to use too much powder.

5. Apply bronzer in areas where the sun hits: forehead, cheekbones, nose, chin and a little bit on your neck so everything looks uniform.

6. Define your eyebrows if you need to using a pencil or eyeshadow that is slightly lighter than your hair color.

7. I like to keep everything in place using an eyebrow gel.

8. Use a dark brown eyeliner pencil to line your upper lash line. Smudge with a Q-tip or your finger so it looks soft and natural.

9. Curl your lashes and apply mascara.

10. Apply your favorite cream blush or cheek stain and blend well.

Products I used:

1. Undereye concealer: Yves Saint Laurent, touche ├ęclat (#2)
2. Liquid highlighter: Benefit, Girl meets pearl
3. Tinted moisturizer: Tarte, Smooth Operator (Agent 10, AKA Conceal)
4. Face powder: Tarte, Provocateur mineral powder (Light 04)
5. Bronzer: Tarte, Park Ave Princess mineral bronzer
6. Eyebrow pencil:Shu uemura, hard formula 9 (Seal Brown)
7. Eyebrow gel: Benefit, Speed brow
8. Eyeliner pencil: Bobbi Brown, creamy eye pencil (Mahogany)
9. Eyelash curler: Shiseido
10. Mascara: Maybelline, Volum' Express One by One Hydrofuge (Very black)

e & h


Finding balance

One of the biggest reasons why I decided to start this beauty blog again is because I recently organized my makeup collection and I realized I have many products that don't suit my skin type/tone and therefore I will never use. On top of that, I didn't realize the amount of makeup that I currently have! Before I had kept my makeup in different storage boxes around my room and therefore I didn't realize how much I actually owned until I put it all together. I naively thought all of my stuff would fit in just one of those two drawers.

I would say this is 95% of my makeup collection (there's a few more things in the back of the drawer that you can't see very well). I keep my foundation stuff in a separate bag but I am more into color than anything else, so what you see here are my blushes, bronzers, highlighters, lipsticks, eyeshadows, false eyelashes, nail polishes and palettes. I know other beauty bloggers and youtube gurus have a lot more makeup than I do, but still...this is way more than I can use before they expire. There are even some things that have never been used because I always reach for the same products.

I am a beauty junkie, and since I don't spend a lot of money on other things I feel like I have an excuse to keep purchasing beauty products. After all, we all have our vices and buying makeup is not as bad as smoking or drinking, right? But lately just looking at all this makeup has been making me feeling guilty and stressed instead of it being what it's supposed to be, FUN! However, I certainly don't regret buying it, because after having tested so many different brands, textures and colors, I have a pretty good idea of what works for me and what doesn't.

One of my resolutions for this year is to find make more conscious purchases in makeup (because let's be honest, I don't think I can stop buying it completely...new collections are so tempting!), and to start building a better (and more age-appropriate) wardrobe instead. Until now, I only focused on my makeup and not my clothes, and many times I didn't even think whether my makeup was appropriate for my outfit (jeans, flip flops and a hoodie don't go well with a smokey eye...umm, no)

So starting now, I want to try out all of my products in my collection and decide whether I will actually use them or not. The ones that don't work out (and have only been lightly used) will be stored away in a box for a blog sale I am planning to have in a couple of months. I will do a more comprehensive post on my updated makeup collection after I sell or give away the makeup that I don't use.

Do you ever feel like you have too much makeup? What do you do with the things you don't use?

e & h

A little bit about me.

Hello there! What could I write on my very first blog post? Well, I could begin by saying that this is actually my second attempt at keeping a blog. 

I am a graduate student from California and I am interested in many things including beauty, food, travel, books and photography. I would really enjoy having this space to share these interests with others, and I hope that this time I will make the time to keep updating this blog. I will certainly do my best to post as often as I can and to keep things fun, informative and useful!

e & h