Light Moisturiser for Combination Skin

I’ve decided to steer away from heavy creams and moisturisers from now on (except in the middle of winter probably) because I am still breaking out and I’ve given up trying to fight it with anti-acne products. I think the cause is much more complicated: perhaps stress, combination skin type, the weather, etc. I don’t get too many pimples at a time but I get them regularly nowadays 😦

So far, I’ve only tried two light moisturisers and thought I’d do a little post promoting them lol.

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Apart from the simple, minimalist design, I really adore Muji’s Moisturising Milk (Light) for its watery consistency and effective hydration. There are more moisturising ones from the same line but I picked the Light one. True to its name,  it feels light and offers the right amount of moisture for my face. The ingredients are apparently gentle too. Just did some research and saw that it’s made for sensitive skin. It’s also affordable. Forgot how much exactly, I got it in Taiwan, but the conversion is definitely less than Php 200 for a 50ML bottle. I’ll most likely purchase the bigger bottle next time.

Before I knew that the Muji Moisturising Milk is free of those irritants (e.g. paraben, fragrance), I thought I’d buy another light moisturiser that has more natural ingredients (yes I’m out of control, I just bought a ton of other skincare products last month and I barely use them).  Since Ecostore recently started their skincare range, I decided to try their light moisturiser, made for combination/oily type. I’m lucky it was on sale at the supermarket for 19.99 NZD. If it was the original price (26.99 NZD) I probably won’t be too keen. I tried it for the first time today and the most noticeable effect so far is the powdery scent once it’s settled. I like it. Hopefully it doesn’t break me out. I also like that is has more nourishing, natural-based ingredients compared to the Muji one.

 

48 hours in Taipei (Day 2)

On my second (and sadly, last) day in Taipei, I just had to visit IKEA even if it wasn’t on my original itinerary because I haven’t been to any IKEA store haha. Apparently, there’s an IKEA restaurant/cafe (thank you random blog!). That’s where I had brunch (Swedish meatballs are ok).

The sky was beginning to look so overcast around lunch time. Still, I headed to the Xiangshan hiking trail (via Xianshan stop, Line 2) also known as Elephant Hill. It offers a good view of the city and the majestic Taipei 101.

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After several selfies atop the hill (one of the downsides of traveling alone is you barely get good pictures of yourself amidst the sights huhu), I traveled to the Taipei Zoo (via Line 1). The train ride was longer than usual as it was located outside the city. My main agenda was to see the Koala and Panda but almost all the other animals were fascinating too!

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At sundown, I made my way to Longshan Temple (Line 5). It was super busy and looked amazing at night. My photos don’t do it justice.

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a mix of old and new

Last on my list was the bustling Ximending area, a favorite among Taiwanese youth and tourists. The highlight for me was the Creative Boutique, which showcases super cool, unique finds. My time at Ximending was brief as I had to rush back to the hostel to pick up my stuff and head to the airport.

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That ends my 48 hours in Taipei!!! AirAsia flights are a bit cheaper than CEB (at the moment they’re selling at just over P3000!) and I definitely plan on going back. For my future trip to Taiwan,  I shall visit the National Palace Museum,  Jiufen Mining Town and the scenic Taroko Gorge (the last two are outside Taipei). I CANNOT WAIT!

by José Garcia Villa

In my desire to be Nude
I clothed myself in fire:—
Burned down my walls, my roof,
Burned all these down.

Emerged myself supremely lean
Unsheathed like a holy knife.
With only His Hand to find
To hold me beyond annul.

And found Him found Him found Him
Found the Hand to hold me up!
He held me like a burning poem
And waved me all over the world.

48 hours in Taipei (DAY 1)

Most impulsive, rushed and sleep-deprived trip of my life so far! Booked my flight on a Wednesday, was off to the airport Thursday afternoon, landed in Taiwan past 1AM on Friday and flew back to Manila past 1AM Sunday. So technically I was in Taipei for less than 48 hours if you count the hours spent at Taoyuan Airport. Another full day would have been ideal but I had a work commitment.

Anyway,  I was still  pretty satisfied with my itinerary. It helped a lot that the metro was so efficient (like Japan’s!!!). I highly recommend getting the 48hr train pass (unlimited use of the metro) for NT$280 OR the 2-day pass for unlimited metro + city buses (not all buses) for NT$310. I got the latter. (Note that the 2 day pass is not equal to 48 hours. It expires at the end of the second day). Say you started using it 12 noon on the first day, it would still expire 12 midnight of the second day whereas a 48-hour pass would still be valid til 12 noon of the third day. The 48-hour pass is better, I guess.

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Since I arrived in the wee hours, I just tried sleeping in the airport but only got around an hour of sleep. At 6AM, I rode the bus to the city (Kuo Kuang bus, NT$125, takes less than an hour), stored my bag at the hostel (check-in was still at 3PM), and started exploring the city.

DAY 1

First on the agenda: Confucius Temple and Dalongdong Baoan Temple (via Line 2: Tamsui-Xinyi Line, nearest stop: YUANSHAN). The colours and details of these temples were amazing! I was probably the only tourist in the area. Confucius Temple was almost deserted while everyone else in Baoan temple were there to worship. It was a peaceful morning too so I sat down and tried to catch some sleep but nope, didn’t happen.

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Dalongdong Baoan Temple
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Confucius Temple

Next stop: Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall (via Line 2 as well, has its own station). It was packed with tourists! I only stopped for about 15 minutes then rode the metro to Taipei 101 (station: same name, Line 2), which used to be the highest building in the world if I’m not mistaken.

The mall area had heaps of high end shops and people waiting to go to the observation deck. I didn’t go up anymore because I was on a tight budget. I just had lunch at the food court and tried to sleep again at one of the benches inside the mall (LOL I was drained and needed to wait for 3PM for check-in ugh). I couldn’t sleep in a crowded mall, so I just walked about a kilometer to ESLITE’s flagship store. Eslite is a bookstore chain in Taiwan, known for its 24-hour store in Dunhua (also in Taipei), but I went to the one in the Xinyi shopping area. The store had 6 floors! Majority of the books I saw were Chinese translations of English titles but they also sold non-book items.

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Eslite’s Flagship Store in Xinyi

After a quick tour of Eslite, I took Line 5 (Bannan Line) to the Taipei Main Station. The hostel where I stayed was about 5 minutes away if you know where to go. It was conveniently located but it could be confusing to reach because the station was huge! The station was also a mall and had several exits and passageways. I managed to find my way most of the time but on the night before my flight, it took me forever to get out of there! Quick review of Flip Flop Hostel: Value for money! Clean rooms and bathrooms. Lockable cabinet beside the beds. Location was good enough. Staff service could be improved.

After checking-in, I was finally able to take a short nap before spending the evening at Shilin Night Market, probably the most famous of Taipei’s many night markets (it’s accessible via Line 2, Jiantan station). I thought it was just gonna be a long stretch of stalls. I was wrong. It was massive! It was actually several streets/alleys and was extremely busy on a Friday night.

I had squid ink sweet dumpling (NT$50) for dinner (the sesame/peanut sauce inside was so good!) and almond tea (NT$30).

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Despite sleep-deprivation, it was a productive and fascinating first day. I was thoroughly impressed and jealous of their train system. Rush hours were bearable. I also noticed that everyone, especially the young, were dressed nicely and made up; I on the other hand looked shabby lol. Again, reminiscent of Japan. I enjoyed the city’s vibe, lights, the transportation, culture, the mix of old and new. I already knew by Day 1 that Taipei is a city I will keep coming back to.

I wrote about Day 2 here.

Mga kuha sa iniwan kong kuwarto. Dalawa sa napakaraming litrato sa cellphone ko. Marami akong kuha ng view sa labas kasi kahit kailan hindi ata ako nagsawa. Lalo na yung pagabi na. Napakaganda.

Siyam na buwan akong kinupkop ng kuwartong ‘to. Marami akong itinulog, iniyak, isinulat at inisip dito. Nakita niya kong kinikilig, nakita akong umibig. Nasubaybayan ang ating pag-uusap. Mga sandaling puno ng sabik. Kaunting halik. Yakap. Pero mas maraming oras ang mahirap. May mga araw na masaklap.

Pagbalik, maninibago sa bagong kuwarto. Maiisip yung luma. Yung nakasanayan. Yung minahal nang lubusan. Pero kailangang kalimutan. Susubukan.

Dear S,

I also suck at goodbyes but I’ll try anyway.

September was brutal. Even my horoscope said so haha. But the saving grace of that month was knowing you. Thanks for sticking around despite my weirdness/sadness/anxiety, for not thinking I’m stupid (because I actually am, next to your genius) and for being a patient listener.

You’ve done wonders to my mental and emotional stability. I’m still neurotic but it would’ve been way worse if I didn’t have you in my life the past 2-3 months. My stress levels and overthinking significantly drop when I’m with you. Seriously, thanks.

Thank you too for showing me around Auckland. It was a pleasure exploring bits of the city (and outside) that I would otherwise have not discovered on my own. The only bad thing about it is that I would associate a shit ton of places with you if things fall apart lol. Thanks anyway for the memories, good food, awesome movies and for adding background music to our nights (that Coldplay radio now has a special place in my heart hehe). You have spectacular taste 😉 You’re wonderful, generous and I adore your drive and wisdom. But my favourite thing about you is that you still tolerate silliness even if you’re mostly into serious stuff. You’ve somehow unleashed my playfulness. Calling me a goofball is one of the best compliments I’ve ever received.

I’m really going to miss talking and spending time with you. I’m going to miss you and your quirks. And our snuggles of course 😉

Keep in touch, ok?

Catch ya later!

A