Beauty flash

Beauty flash


Invest in these formulas and products to paint and care for your nails at home like a professional.

Home gel nail kit (photo 1)

You do not have to travel to the nail salon to get your nails painted with a gel polish. Or, to go back another time to get it removed. Like most other home gel nail kits, Swedish cosmetics brand Depend's new GelLack system lets you cure its gel polish formula under an LED light.

Depend's gel polish has a thickness and gloss similar to regular salon products.

It promises to last up to three weeks without chipping, although the lacquer on my index fingers started to chip after a week. The best part about the GelLack system?

Removing the polish is a breeze. Just rub the Remover Oil (blended with natural oils) onto the edges of the polish, and soak the nails in a bowl of warm 40 deg C water. Then, gently scrape the polish off using your fingernails.

The Depend GelLack starter kit ($99) - which excludes the Removal Oil ($6.90) and the nail colours ($13.50 each) - is available at selected Watsons stores.

Nailcare routine (photos 2 and 3)

Ciate's new The Treatment Collection is possibly all you will need to keep your nails strong and healthy.

The 14 products promise to help solve your "nail woes", such as dullness, brittleness and dehydrated cuticles.

There is also a nail polish corrector pen to correct messy DIY manicures, as well as a cuticle oil made from the African marula nut to keep the digits moisturised and glossy. Each product costs $24 and they are available at Sephora stores.

Do-it-all top coat (photo 4)

Sally Hansen's new Gel Shine 3D Top Coat ($13.90, from selected personal care stores and at BHG) can transform your regular polish into a gel-like high-shine one.

The quick-drying top coat adds volume to the nail colour (so it resembles gel nails) and amplifies the shade so it pops even more.


If you are one of those who decant your SK-II Facial Treatment Essence lotions into mini spray bottles to keep your skin hydrated throughout the day, SK-II has come up with two new products to fulfil your needs.

The Mid-Day Miracle Essence and Mid-Night Miracle Essence ($89 each, available next month) are stored in handy 50ml bottles, and they leave skin feeling moisturised and looking radiant from morning to night.

Just like how you would touch up your make-up at midday or before an evening soiree, spritz these essences to touch up your skincare.

Just how different are these formulas from your own decanted SK-II Facial Treatment Essence?

Besides the brand's signature fermented yeast extract pitera, both products contain a new ingredient, the sodium pyrrolidone carboxylic acid, to help bind water to the skin.

The Mid-Night essence is made with a menthol extract to refresh the skin, too. The brand also claims the formula can be absorbed by the skin even when you have make-up on.


There is no need to lug your curling tongs that weighs a ton in your luggage.

Tuft's new Travelling Curl Iron ($88, from Metro, Robinsons and Tangs) is lightweight and compact. The ceramic-coated barrel with a 25mm circumference retracts into a heat-resistant holder that also acts as the handle of the tongs.

The cord is detachable for easy storage; and the gadget comes with a dual-voltage (110V to 240V) feature. The set comes with a detangling brush and a pouch as well.


Spa Esprit's new range of facials are done with German skincare brand Babor.

There are three options: the Air Supply Facial to rejuvenate and brighten skin; the Pore Loser Facial to refine pores; and the Simple Pimple Plan Facial to detoxify and clarify skin ($214 for 75 mins each).

I tried the Air Supply Facial, which started off with the usual works: double cleansing, a gentle peel and extraction.

This was followed by a pampering revitalising mask, oxygen ampoules, an energising oxygen cream massage and another foam mask coupled with a quick head and shoulder massage.

My tired skin, which was rather dehydrated and dull before the treatment, was visibly brighter and smoother for the next three days.

This article was first published on April 17, 2015.
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