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Thursday, June 4, 2015

When the Going Gets Tough, Get Glowing!

In the middle of a busy week, it can be a challenge to get ready for work in the morning. No matter how tired I am, though, one thing that can instantly perk me up is playing with makeup. Some highlighter, a bit of bronzer, and a swipe of blush help brighten my face and, consequently, my day!

One of my go-to get-glowing combinations is great for the summer, but I love wearing this look at any time of the year. 



photo credit: The Balm, Benefit Cosmetics

The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer
This powder highlighter brightens the face sans the glitter. I use a smaller version of the MAC 168 angled contour brush (special edition) to apply it from the top of my cheekbones up to my temples. 

Benefit High Beam
This liquid alternative from Benefit leaves skin looking dewy. Compared to the Mary-Lou Manizer, High Beam lends a subtler radiance--great for those who prefer a more natural look. Best applied using fingers!


photo credit: Amazon, The Balm, Sephora

MAC Margin
MAC Margin, a powder blush in a peachy shade with MAC's "Frost" finish, is highly pigmented and long-lasting. Just a bit of this shimmer powder can help create a natural flush, but you can also build up the color for an evening look. 

The Balm Hot Mama and NARS Orgasm
I've already hit pan on these similarly shimmery and peachy powder blushes, but I would repurchase them if MAC Margin gets discontinued. Hot Mama is a bit lighter than Margin, while NARS Orgasm is more of a peachy pink with a touch of gold.

photo credit: Sephora

NARS Laguna
You don't need a trip to the beach to get a sun-kissed glow with this compact. Out of the different powder bronzers I've tried, this is the only one that does not look muddy on my medium skin tone. Great for contouring!


Metro Manila store listings are linked below.

  • The Balm (available at Beauty Bar)
  • Benefit 
  • MAC
  • NARS (available at Rustan's Shangri-la, Rustan's Makati, and Rustan's Alabang)



The CityLifeStylist

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Hearty Home-Cooked Meal by Anjelica Toledo: Baby Back Ribs with Jack Daniel's Grill Glaze and Mushroom Risotto

Need an entrée option for a last-minute V-Day meal? Looking for recipe ideas for a special upcoming dinner? Either way, this scrumptious pairing makes for a hearty little home-cooked feast. 

One of my dearest friends, Anjelica Toledo, is my very first featured blogger and I'm thrilled to share this quasi-collaborationa term that perfectly describes our relationship in her home kitchen, in which she works her magic as I pretend to help. In reality, all the "work" I contribute involves taste testing and gushing about her cooking!

Lica specifically had a romantic date in mind when she lovingly prepared the Baby Back Ribs with Jack Daniel's Grill Glaze and the Mushroom Risotto, but I would also recommend these for a nice dinner at home with family and friends.

Bon appétit!

The CityLifeStylist

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photo credit: Anjelica Toledo

Valentine's Day Special: Ribs and Risotto
By Anjelica Toledo
How exactly will you classify the annual celebration of love? “Hallmark holidays do not exist in my calendar,” for those who have a scanty forbearance of all things sappy. “I have been preparing for this day since the start of the year!” Surely, there are those who celebrate this slushy day of romance with their equally schmaltzy partners. Who are we to judge, really? But apart from all the chocolates, flowers, and all the fanciness this occasion has come up with, one thing is certain!
For years, Valentine’s Day has created a handful of excuses to chow down food, whether in merriment or to shoo away the gloom. Whether you are masticating a solo meal in the midst of a chick flick marathon (nothing says “I’m single, so what?” better than watching movies alone in your pajamas); or having a themed house party with your friends (a la Giada de Laurentiis with matching décolletage); or sharing a dish or two with your significant other, food will always be one of the main events of February 14. YAY FOR FOOD! 
Read the rest of the post here.
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This home cook extraordinaire, now a budding entrepreneur, sure has more cooking and food styling tricks up her sleeve. Follow Anjelica Toledo's brand new blog, The Joyful Hands.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

MEGA February 2015 | New League of Talents in Philippine Fashion, Music, Business, Film, and Television


For its 23rd anniversary, MEGA rounds up 23 of the new generation's brightest from fashion, music, business, and the big and the small screen.

The magazine celebrates "the empowered and driven young women of today," as each of them is blossoming into a MEGA womanan independent thinker who speaks her mind and possesses "the passion to enforce positive change."


The talented 23 are (above photo, left to right) Kelsey Merritt, Claudia Barretto, Liza Soberano, Janine Gutierrez, Nadine Lustre, Janella Salvador, Coleen Garcia, Jane Oineza, Sam Rodriguez, Kylie Padilla, Mari Jasmin, Kat Ramnani, Julie Anne San Jose, Kiana Valenciano, Samantha Lewis, Shy Carlos,  Yen Santos, Michelle Vito, Miles Ocampo, Addie Manzano, Yassi Pressman, Louise delos Reyes, and Sofia Andres.

You've already matched the face to the name. Get to know them a little better in MEGA's February 2015 issue with 23 cover stories by Sarah Santiago, Trina Epilepsia, Angelo Ramirez de Cartagena, Therese San Diego (yours truly), and Allan Carreon. 



The CityLifeStylist

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Wardrobe Editing Challenge

 photo credit: Paramount Pictures

When you open a full closet and still feel like you have nothing to wear, it's probably just because you're in one of those moods women are all too familiar with. If this happens too frequently, however, then it's probably time for a wardrobe revamp!

Clothes often reflect one's personality, and they have the power to inspire and energize. Something as simple as a white tee with the perfect fit or a dress in a flattering color can make you feel good about yourself. Keep these in mind when editing your wardrobe--only retain pieces that fit well and look good on you.

Here are more concrete steps to a successful closet cleanup:




photo credit: Topshop (all pairs of pants, black dress, short black skirt, white tee), H&M (black midi skirt), Uniqlo (white oxford shirt), Polyvore (gray pencil skirt), Lyst (cream tube dress)

Identify your essentials. What do you love to keep on regular rotation? Ideally, these should include items that can go from day to night and can be dressed up or down. 

Choosing the most essential clothing items in your wardrobe can be tough, as it's too easy to say you'll need this particular outfit for a possible Halloween costume, or that skirt for when you've shed the extra two, three, or four inches off your waistline. If you really want to get out of that outfit rut, then you need to accept this challenge: If you were to pick only 25 clothing items from your wardrobe, what would these be? 

Here are my personal picks--a mix of casual, corporate, and dressy pieces:
  1. T-shirt in white*
  2. Long-sleeved button-down shirt in white*
  3. Denim button-down shirt in a light wash
  4. Long-sleeved tee in black
  5. Long-sleeved tee in gray
  6. Long-sleeved tee in navy blue
  7. Quarter-sleeved knit top in gray
  8. Quarter-sleeved knit top in coral
  9. Knit tunic in black
  10. Knit tunic in gray
  11. Long knit cardigan in gray
  12. Denim shorts in a dark wash
  13. Denim shorts in a light wash
  14. Skinny jeans in a dark wash*
  15. Skinny jeans in a light wash*
  16. Long black leggings
  17. Denim skater skirt
  18. Textured skater skirt in black
  19. Jersey cotton skater skirt in black
  20. Textured pencil skirt in black
  21. Wool pencil skirt in gray
  22. Black jodhpurs
  23. Quarter-sleeved jersey cotton dress in black*
  24. Cream tube dress
  25. Black and white striped quarter-sleeved dress
Funny how my *closet keepers from 2007 still made the cut!

I failed to include so many other favorites, though, like blazers, jackets, pastel dresses, leather skirts, and swimwear, but those are things I seldom use. This does not necessarily mean I need to dispose of everything else, but the exercise revealed that I should refrain from purchasing more of the items that did not make it to my list of essentials. 


photo credits: Indulgy (Ashley Olsen), Columbia Pictures (Charlie's Angels), The Urban Silhouette (Miranda Kerr)

Keep the non-essentials to a minimum. Growing up, I've been drawn to leather or leather-like pieces, thanks to Charlie's Angels and the Olsens. They're not the best material for our tropical climate but more and more high street brands have produced pieces with leather details that are wearable even in Manila, like skirts! They're so much fun to wear so I seize every opportunity to take them out of my closet, such as cooler months and trips abroad. As I don't get to wear them as often, though, I try to limit my leather purchases. 


photo credit: Song of Style (Aimee Song), The Fashion Tag (Olivia Palermo)

Dress for your body type. Steer clear of things you may like on others but do not fit your figure. Slouchy elegance, for example, is another Olsen-inspired look I've been quite obsessed with but could never pull off. Oversized tops in thick fabrics and any type of loose-fitting pants do not fit my petite, curvy frame, so I stopped buying them. They'll never work for me.


photo credit: New Line Cinema/HBO Films/Glamour magazine

Let go of clothes you will no longer use. Even among your favorites, if you've been trying on a certain piece for months but always end up changing into something else before walking out the door, then you need to let go of it sooner or later. Sell or donate these to somebody who can actually wear them.

Afterwards, your closet will look like it has been edited by a professional stylist according to your fashion palate!



The CityLifeStylist

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Now on The Fat Kid Inside | Celebrate Fried Chicken Day with These New Chicks on the Block



Your teeth sink into a flavorful crunch, sometimes salty or garlicky, other times peppery or spicy. If you’re lucky, the white meat underneath boasts a soft, plump and juicy contrast, completing one lip-smacking fried chicken experience.

What’s not to love?

Before this went online, the only other post on The Fat Kid Inside tagged “fried chicken” was Erwan’s Non-Fried “Fried” Chicken Pillows with Yellow Squash/Zucchini “Pasta” a.k.a Screw Nuggets recipe. While TFKI is all about eating healthy, delicious dishes, we also endorse the occasional cheat treat.

So here are a few relatively new players in the fried chicken arena—seven enticing options for your much-anticipated reward meals. Plus, it’s National Fried Chicken Day in the US on July 6—another excuse to join in on the fun!


Read the rest of the post here.

Prepare yourself for some serious fried chicken cravings.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

MEGA June 2014 | Contemporary New York Dining 71 Floors Up

The month of June whizzed by so quickly. Proper sustenance somehow made up for the long work hours, which is why I have several food posts coming up! 

One particular dining experience, however, was actually for work, though it did not feel like work at all. For MEGA, I had the pleasure of interviewing Chef Carlo Miguel and sampling the food at 71 Gramercy, the restaurant atop the tallest building in the Philippines to date.


Check out the June 2014 issue to find out the must-order dishes (like the unforgettable Organic Honey Glazed Duck Breast!) and desserts (like the truly #Legit Chocolate Cake).

Sunday, May 18, 2014

MEGA May 2014 | Breaking Boundaries of Convention




Get a full dose of inspiration and empowerment from this month's MEGA.

The May 2014 issue celebrates beauty that breaks boundaries with MEGA's 10 Most Beautiful. With their talent, charisma, and stunning, unique looks, these women elevate our concept of beauty: actresses Andi Eigenmann and Mercedes Cabral; Asia's Next Top Model runner-up Jodilly Pendre and third placer Katarina Rodriguez; power belter Radha; photographer Shaira Luna; and fashion designer Charina Sarte. Completing the list are three multi-hyphenates: singer-songwriter, events/TV host, and alopecia awareness advocate Abby Asistioentrepreneur, blogger and creative genius Martine Cajucom; and model, DJ, artist and adventurer Sanya Smith. I was thrilled to have been assigned to write the features on Cabral, Rodriguez, Asistio, Smith, and Cajucom, who share refreshing perspectives of beauty and such intense passion for their respective crafts. 

MEGA has likewise outdone itself with this year's Annual Beauty Awards, a fun and informative read on "toys" for the grown-up gals--today's topnotch beauty and skincare tools and products for highlighting your best features and taking care of your skin.

The magazine also celebrates the beauty of life in A Not So Private Matter, an inspiring, brave and thought-provoking piece in which managing editor Sarah Santiago shares her thoughts on unintended pregnancy and the omnipresent choice to save a life. 

Read more in MEGA's May 2014 issue.



The CityLifeStylist