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Mar 25, 2015

How To: Brighten Images

3/25/2015 0 Comments

One of the reasons I am enjoying blogging again is because of taking photos of products (although that sometimes prove to be one pet peeve I have of blogging too). I only use my phone in taking pictures and that doesn't always give me the photos I wanted, so I always edit them to make them look better. I just think of it as makeup for images - just for enhancing purposes, never to alter them completely.

What I use is Photoshop and I thought I might share with you my process in editing my images. I know Photoshop can be a little intimidating with all its tools/buttons/icons. Even I myself can't say that I've mastered every tool Photoshop has to offer, and I have this program for years!

But learning a few tools would already prove useful. So today I'm sharing with you my process for brightening my dark and dull images. I suggest clicking on the pictures below to view them in their original size. I didn't resize them for this purpose.

Open Photoshop.
Open your image thru File - Open.

Right click on Background and click on Duplicate layer.

Click on the Blending Change Normal and in the drop down menu choose Screen. The photo would instantly become brighter. Click on Opacity to adjust the brightness. I chose 60% here.

The photo is brighter but it looks a bit hazy. What I do next is add contrast to make the colors and shadows pop out more so that they look more three-dimensional.

Click Image - Adjustments - Brightness/Contrast.

Adjust the Brightness and Contrast accordingly. I chose 10 for Brightness and 30 for Contrast. Click OK. You can go back and add more if you think you need more, so don't go all out at once.

And here you now have a bright image you can already use on your blog. You can go ahead and save that, but what I actually like to do is take it a bit further with:

  • straightening and cropping
  • image resizing
  • sharpening and/or reducing noise
  • adding text (sometimes)
I will share those with you in my next posts, if anyone's interested. :)

I hope you enjoyed my post and found it useful. :) Have a nice day.

Mar 21, 2015

Travel Favorites: My Beauty Essentials

3/21/2015 0 Comments

I have been traveling a lot this past year. Just this 2015 I have already traveled 4 times. Gahhh! And it's land travel by bus too. The longest was a 12-hour trip. The rest were 6 hours. :[ Oh, and I didn't count the trips back home.

So I just thought I'd share with you my favorite beauty products to bring when I travel. These are the basics that I need to look presentable when I arrive at my destination. I do however bring more than this (way more) like a couple lipsticks and an eye shadow palette.

So here are the 6 items I cannot live without when I travel:

Lip and Cheek Tint | Benefit Chacha Tint 
A lip and cheek tint is handy for adding color to my lips and cheeks. I like the coral color of the Chacha tint because it doesn't look too bright on the cheeks but bright enough to be obvious on my pigmented lips. I also prefer tints and stains when I travel so that the color won't easily rub off when I go on food trips, which happens often.

Lip balm | The FaceShop Sweet Kiss Balm 
Lip balms are a must! My lips are easily chapped by extreme weather like the arctic air conditioning in the bus and malls and the hot humid air outside when I am out and about. I have to prevent my lips from chapping by slapping on some lip balm every now and then. The pink color helps in making it look healthy too.

BB Cream | Etude House Precious Mineral Bright Fit BB Cream
Frequent traveling is taking a toll on my skin. Not only is a BB cream good at evening out my skin tone, it also has skin care properties, plus it has SPF 30 which is very important to prevent the skin from getting more damaged.

Face Powder | The FaceShop Lovely Me:Ex Powder Pact 
I don't think I can live without powder. It helps keep the oil and sweat at bay so that I won't look too haggard when I feel haggard.

Eyebrow Pencil | BYS Brown Brow Liner
I can actually survive without doing my brows. It's just that having non-existent brows don't look good in pictures, and when I travel it's a given that I take a lot of pictures. I don't want to look back at these travel experiences thinking I look like an alien or something.
This eyebrow pencil from BYS is handy for travel because it comes with a brush at one end and both ends have caps so I can be sure they don't make a mess in my bag.

Oil Control Sheets | Unbranded from Daiso
For quick touch ups even when I'm literally on the road walking trying to find my way to somewhere I need to be.

That's my top 6 beauty essentials when I travel. I just realized I have a lot of pink stuff. :D
What are you essentials? Share them with me. :)

Mar 7, 2015

Empties + Mini Reviews

3/07/2015 2 Comments

I don't think I've ever done an empties post before. Anyway, since I haven't blogged much last year, I have used up some products that I had every intention of reviewing but now I couldn't remember much of the details I wanted to go into. So I'll just make a mini review for each of these things.

Olay Total Effects Intense Moisture Face & Body Wash
Promises 7 benefits for younger looking skin:

  1. Deeply nourishes
  2. Softens skin
  3. Evens skin tone
  4. Improves bounciness
  5. Smoothens rough skin
  6. Brightens to revive tired skin
  7. Minimizes the appearance of fine lines

I enjoyed using this face and body wash especially when I travel because I don't have to bring a separate product to wash my face with. I have noticed that my skin has been more supple when I used this. What I don't like about this is it's difficult to rinse off (something I hate with cleansers) as it leaves a "moisturizing" residue on my skin. My sister also complains that it doesn't smell nice although I have no problem with it.

Kojie-san Cleanser + Toner Dual Action
I admit, my night routine isn't as similar as most routines I've watched or read online. I always wash my face whenever I get home, whatever time that is, let's say 7pm. But I don't follow up with toner and moisturizer right after. I would still have to prep for dinner, and eat, so I wait till I'm ready for bed before I put on the other stuff. Let's say I go to sleep at 1am. So I have accumulated some dirt and grease during that 6 hours of being at home.

That's where this Kojie-san cleanser and toner comes in handy. It's cleansing and toning at the same time so I don't have to wash my face again. :)

Another thing I like about it is that it doesn't sting my eyes unlike some other toners I've tried that seems like I'm applying rubbing alcohol on my face. This toner is gentle and it does clean properly.

Kensington Ablution Shower Gel in Wispy Jasmine
I bought this together with Fresh Waters of the Valley and made a review on that one while I was using it. This variant (Wispy Jasmine) differs from that one because it suds really well. Although I don't notice much difference in my skin. Just a typical shower gel that smells nice I guess.

Watsons Naturals Olive Hair Mask
The Naturals line from Watsons boasts of using more organic and natural ingredients and being paraben free. That is actually one of the reasons I picked out this mask, aside from it containing olive oil, because I've heard olive oil is good for the hair and I just want to my hair look better (don't we all?) :) This hair mask is good, although I guess I had very high expectations that wasn't met. So I'm moving on. I'm going to try the argan oil variant next.

Garnier Light Complete Night Restore
This is a repurchase but this time I took my time to finish a tube. I only use this on my spots to lighten them and it really works well. I have made a more detailed review the first time I purchased this.

Myra Vita Quench Dry Skin Lotion
This lotion contains Vitamin E beads which was nice to apply because it feels like exfoliating but the beads gets dissolved and absorbed into the skin. The lotion though was a bit thick for my taste and leaves a residue on my palms especially when I sweat. I do like the scent of this though.

That's all I can say and remember about these products. I still have a lot more to review. Lol. Another downside for taking a long hiatus. :D

I hope you enjoyed my post. Have a nice day.