Friday, November 7, 2014

Samples Received & Redeemed: October 2014

Many apologies for the late update on this monthly post, my work schedule has been rather tight and almost feel like it's back-to-back. A girl treasures her sleep, you know. So without much further ado, let's all proceed along with the monthly samples and cheap and most-wanted goodies on my wishlist for who knows how long LOL

So, I browsed around Watsons and only got this 3 new items, not including my usual monthly purchase of Collagen drinks and Collagen jellies. From left to right:

  • Essential Leave On Treatment Milk @ 100ml
  • Bio-Essence Miracle Water Jelly Makeup Remover @ 200ml
  • Milk Plus Bright and White Whitening Facial Scrub @ 100ml

The Essential Leave On Treatment Milk purchase was decided after I tried the many samples I managed to get my hair on when it first came out. When I realized I was getting less tangled hair when I woke up in the morning, I decided to get a retail bottle. As for the Bio-Essence Miracle Water Jelly Makeup Remover, it seems to be a new product and I am always on the lookout for better makeup removers and I'm always game enough to try new stuffs :D And lastly for the Milk Plus Bright and White Whitening Facial Scrub, it has been around for a while now but the reason why I didn't wanted to buy it back then was because the Watsons near my area looked kinda shabby then. It was only after they had their outlet renovations that I decided to get it :D

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: No samples for trying :( And the sample redemption for Essential Leave On Treatment Milk is over. However, I would recommend getting the retail version if you have hair that is kept past shoulder-length and you wake up to lion-mane hair in the morning :P

I always like bringing hand creams to work since my hands (or claws) always gets so dry that everything I touched feels so powdery. I'm kinda OCD about getting that powdery feeling and sensation on my hands and feet. Urgh! But the catch is that, hand creams nowadays comes in those tin foil tubes version, you can find variations of them at:

  • The Body Shop
  • L'Occitane en Provence
  • Crabtree & Evelyn

so on and so forth, but just to name a few personal and classy stores that I always like to frequent. And because I am always lugging a big bag (big enough to bring my daily work essentials, but not that big to be considered a "runaway", according to my mother and my colleagues) and all that things around just kinda "squished" my precious hand creams. So, I just decided to get this so I can transfer my hand cream into this little dandy bottle. No more flattened hand cream tubes LOL

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: Unfortunately, there's no samples for Daiso products. But hey, it costs only S$2 per item, what's there to complain? :D

Hada Labo
All those sample Hada Labo products, I always use them either via the traditional method. Or, I get those DIY mask from Daiso and use the products as a mask instead, if I feel really lazy in trying to "piak" them onto my skin LOL

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: Go over to, fill in your details and wait for the samples to be delivered to your mailbox :D

The Sample Store - Nivea
I've tried roll-on deodorant and most times, it just didn't work for me. So, I ended up switching over to deodorant sprays instead as I find that it's slightly more effective than a roll-on. Although I have to stress that if you tend to sweat a lot, or if your work/job/career demanded that you literally sweat buckets, you'll probably be better off getting those deodorant wipes to feel clean and fresh as it would seem rather ineffective. I got my Nivea Anti-Perspirant Whitening Happy Shave from The Sample Store previously and the sample bottle comes in a 35ml bottle and I thought it might be good to give the Nivea version a try as I am currently a Rexona user.

The Sample Store - Biorè
I got my Biorè Makeup Remover Micellar Cleansing Water sample (@ 6ml) from The Sample Store previously. Just when you thought Biorè has already come out with a new makeup remover, there comes another new Biorè makeup remover once more. It seems that makeup remover choices are getting more and more abundant, and I just love trying out new things all the time :D

The Sample Store - VDL
VDL samples I got from The Sample Store as well. The samples (3 pieces in total) I received are:

  • VDL Skin Expert Serum @ 28ml per sachet
  • VDL Skin Expert Cream @ 50ml per sachet

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: For sample redemption of Nivea Anti-Perspirant Whitening Happy Shave, go over to and checkout/redeem with your TSS points.

Unfortunately, sample redemptions for Biorè Makeup Remover Micellar Cleansing Water and VDL Skin Expert are out of stock :(

Vichy Normaderm Oil-Control Duo
I redeemed a Vichy Normaderm Oil-Control Duo sample previously. The samples I received are:

  • Vichy Normaderm Tri-activ x 2 sachets @ 1.5ml each
  • Vichy Normaderm Night Detox x 2 sachets @ 1.5ml each

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: Go over to, fill in your details and wait for the samples to be delivered to your mailbox :D

Centrum was previously hosting a sampling activity for a specific amount of testers. I was one of the lucky one to get a tube to try out. Simply put, I simply cannot digest and keep actual Vitamin C a.k.a Orange Juice in my stomach for long. I always end up puking everything out, so my next best course of action would be to go for Vitamin C tablets such as these Centrum Effervescent tablets instead. It stays inside my "system" long enough for me to reap it's benefits. Or risk feeling ill for the next 1 week after drinking a cup of pure, undiluted OJ. Hmm..

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: Sampling activity is over.

Dr. Young was previously hosting a sampling activity and these are the samples I received from them :D The sample details go from left to right:

Dr. Young Sample Kit
  • Dr. Young Camellia Deep Cleansing Foam @ 1ml
  • Dr. Young Triple Action B.B. SPF 33 PA+++ @ 1.5ml or 2ml
  • Dr. Young Bamboo Blooming Booster @ 2ml

Dr. Young Sample Kit
  • Dr. Young Anti-Dryness Eye Gel @ 1ml
  • Dr. Young Pore Tightening Serum @ 1.5ml or 2ml
  • Dr. Young AC Out Spot stOP Serum @ 1ml

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: Go over to, fill out a really short questionnaire and your details and wait for the samples to be delivered to your mailbox :D

The Body Shop
Previously, The Body Shop had some new items and store discounts. So, I went to get:

  • Pink Grapefruit Shower Gel @ 250ml
  • Red Musk Eau De Parfum @ 100ml

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: No samples for redemption although I have to say their new products are getting lesser while their current products are always on offer. I can't say no to offers, especially shower gels since I can't share the family soap bar due to skin issues and allergies :(

Essential decided to give their current shampoo and conditioner a new makeover and at the same time introduce a new product. I thought I would be getting sample versions of their latest shampoo and conditioner. But I got:

  • Essential Light Finish Volumizing Shampoo @ 15ml
  • Essential Light Finish Volumizing Conditioner @ 15ml

I really wanted to try their Essential Deep Cleansing Care Shampoo and Essential Deep Cleansing Care Conditioner since the description for these 2 products fit my hair/scalp type perfectly well D:

WHERE TO REDEEM SAMPLE: If you want to give their Essential Light Finish Volumizing samples a try, go over to, Like their page as a fan first. Next, click on the Free Sample tab and follow the prompts, fill in your details. Wait for the samples to be delivered to your mailbox :D

Although I still find it weird that they seemed to place a great deal of emphasis on their Essential Deep Cleansing Care series but gave out the Essential Light Finish Volumizing samples instead :O

Why not like my Facebook page at to be informed of latest samples I found, which is duly updated? Also includes updates to health, beauty & lifestyle tips at least once a day. It will definitely save you the trouble of having to hunt them down :)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Monthly Topic #22: Do You Fix Your Mood With Food?

~Image Source: Wellness for Successful Women | Femanna~

There's a good reason you might have the urge to scarf an entire tub of ice-cream when you’re feeling down: certain foods can temporarily boost your mood. That's because your body and brain are ruled by a complex group of chemicals and hormones, many of which influence appetite, emotions and energy levels, according to research scientists. Natural fluctuations of these compounds - like those that occur during the week before your period - can make you feel anxious, annoyed or blah. Similarly, when you're upset, say because some loser guy dumps you, those feelings can trigger changes in those same body chemicals. Enter yummy food. Some research shows that certain foods - particularly high-fat goodies such as cheese, ice-cream and chocolate - stimulate your body to produce endorphins, magical mood boosters that give you an instant high. If you're anxious, for instance, you may crave carbs such as bread, potato chips, pasta and soft drinks. These contain ingredients that trigger your brain to release serotonin, which has an uplifting, yet calming effect. High-protein foods, including peanut butter, yoghurt and chicken, do the opposite: they release a chemical that pumps up mental alertness. That may explain why you're more likely to grab a handful of peanuts when you're up studying late at night. As for those cravings many girls get before their periods, there's biology behind those too.

During this time, the chemical that regulates your desire for fat surges and levels of happiness-producing serotonin are super-low. Voila! You're suddenly hungrier, and cravings for foods such as chocolates, muffins and biscuits may feel stronger than usual. That's because your body is trying to prepare for a baby, which would need lots of fatty nourishment to grow. Because these foods are so good at lifting your spirits, you get hooked on treating yourself with them. And the very next time you need a pick-me-up, you may crave those self-same snacks. But if you're chowing down when you're not hungry - and eating fattening stuff - you could pack on pounds. Plus, the food makes you feel better only for a short while; once the cake is gone, the problems or bad feelings remain. Of course, there's nothing wrong with an occasional treat if you're feeling blue. Eating only becomes a problem when you "swallow" painful feelings instead of facing them.

What's Your Food Attitude?

Answer true or false to the questions, then read on for the scoop on your gut reactions.

1. I often munch on junk to help me get through studying or work I've taken home from the office. (True / False)

2. Sometimes I find my hand at the bottom of a family-sized bag of chips, or see that I've eaten a whole packet of biscuits, and I don't know how it happened - it's like I totally zone out or something. (True / False)

3. When I get great results on an exam or kick butt at the gym, I indulge in my favorite treats. I deserve it after all the hard work! (True / False)

4. When I'm a bit down, I tend to think about or plan out what a great meal I'll have next - it really gives me something to look forward to. (True / False)

5. Whenever I have my friends over to chat, I make sure there are plenty of snacks on hand. Gossip's just not as fun without plenty of munchies! (True / False)

6. If I get into a fight with my parents or a guy breaks my heart, the first thing I do is grab a bag of sweets or an extra-large serving of French fries. (True / False)

7. In between all my stressful activities - for example, going right from work to the gym, then rushing home to clean the house and crash - I sometimes scarf something to calm myself down. (True / False)

8. When I'm depressed, I eat - even if it's my weight that's making me depressed. (True / False)

Fixing feelings with food, unfortunately, is mainly a girl thing. Many of us are taught to smile and not to complain, and we learn not to express negative feelings. Instead, we drown our sorrows in a slice of cheesecake or leftover noodles. The food comforts us, and will never think we're whiners.

So how do you break that feeding of frenzy/feelings cycle? If you're upset, before you reach for eats, find a way to vent. Try talking things through with a friend or parent, or try keeping track of your eating patterns in a diary. You may think you're bugging people by spilling your guts, but in fact, confiding in others makes them feel needed. Expressing yourself is like anything else - you get better with practice. Try to label your feelings and be direct.

It's also key to tune in to your tummy as well as your mind before you munch. Next time you find yourself marching zombie-like towards the fridge, ask yourself, "Am I really hungry?" Do this out loud, which may knock you out of that snack stupor. If the answer is no (and you've got to be honest!), there's a good chance something's bugging you, even if it's not at the front of your mind.

Try jotting down your feelings in a notebook. Once you start seeing trends in your diary (are you a total sucker for ice-cream at deadline time?), you can learn to stop eating for the wrong reasons - and find non-food ways to satisfy your emotional needs.

Cure Your Mood Munchies!

Instead of pigging out when cravings hit, try these healthy alternatives to alter your body chemistry and lift your mood even better than food.

When you're sad or depressed

You might crave:
cake, biscuits, muffins Instead, try: working out - with headphones on. Both exercise and music increase levels of the same happy chemicals that these foods trigger. In fact, studies show that 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise, performed three times a week, can actually make people who are mildly depressed feel better.

When you're broken-hearted

You might crave:
chocolate Instead, try: calling a funny friend or inviting your friends over to watch your favorite comedy movie. Just like eating chocolate, laughing releases endorphins, body chemicals which instantly lift our spirits. Curiously, having a good cry on a friend's shoulder can do the trick as well, since sobbing also releases endorphins.

When you're stressed, angry or anxious

You might crave:
loads of pasta, noodles, bagels, pretzels, crackers, potato chips Instead, try: taking a warm bath. Carbohydrates like these encourage your brain to release serotonin, which helps to reduce the levels of the chemicals your body produces under stress. A hot soak can work the same magic by encouraging your muscles to relax. Also calming is meditation, which can convert stress hormones into feel-good endorphins. Studies also show that prayer - or just thinking good thoughts for 15 minutes - can reverse levels of stress hormones.

When you're feeling tired, blah or unable to concentrate

You might crave:
jelly beans, hard candy, sugary drinks Instead, try: eating an apple, an orange, a banana or some grapes. Experts say that candy and soft drinks that are high in sugar make you tired, since they spark a sharp rise in blood-sugar levels and then make you crash. Fruit also gives you a boost, but the effects last longer thanks to nutrients and fibre, which help keep blood-sugar levels steady.