Olivia Estrada is a writer based in Manila, Philippines.

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Early holiday essentials: Parisian skincare and pigmented lips

Early holiday essentials: Parisian skincare and pigmented lips

The trees have been lit and the nights are getting colder. The party invitations are coming in. But before we can truly enjoy the holidays, work gets a little bit more hectic. Deadlines feel so close and the job orders are piling up. And you don’t have time for the usually multi-step skincare routine like you used to. Sometimes, you have to keep it simple.

Nuxe, a Parisian beauty favorite, seems to have this in mind with its newest line: Aquabella. This skincare system promises results in just three steps. It brings us back to the basics: cleanser, toner and moisturizer. I find that this stays true to the effortless Parisian beauty beliefs. It’s a no-nonsense approach when you don’t want to experiment and you just want results.

Best for combination skin types, you start with a Micro-Exfoliating Purifying Gel. Meant to be used once a day, it strips off excess oil without leaving your skin dry. The natural origin blue microbeads do all the work to clear up your complexion. I’d advice to use this at night especially if you wear makeup.


Next comes the Beauty-Revealing Essence Lotion. If you think your current toner doesn’t do much for you, try this essence-lotion that’s packed with moisturizing elements. It has white waterlily and hyaluronic acid that softens your skin’s texture. Best used morning and night.

The last step is the Beauty-Revealing Moisturizing Emulsion. This formula addresses the problems of combination skin not all moisturizers can. It can moisturize dry spots on your skin while leaving the oily areas mattified via silica powder. The emulsion also has a patented Natural Blur Complex to smoothen your skin. It’s advised to use two pumps of this, one pump for you face and one pump for your neck. If you’re convinced, you might also find these three products are a good gift for your fellow skincare product fiend!

When you’ve got great skin, sometimes all you need is lipstick.

To anyone who cares, I often declare how one of my favorite red lipstick, Holllywood Red, is from Bobbi Brown. I was then excited to find how they have a new lip collection just in time for those wanting a new holiday shade or for those in need of some stocking stuffers. The Bobbi Brown House of Luxe carries three different lipstick finishes and thirty-six different colors.


The Luxe Lip Matte Lipstick comes in a traditional bullet packaging but has a revolutionary take on the matte lip. It has a powdery, feathery feel without compromising the full pigment. It’s a one-swipe wonder if you don’t want to be bothered with applying your lipstick repeatedly just to get the color to show.

The Luxe Lip Matte Lipstick also promises a 12-hour wear, ideal for long work days or parties that last until the morning. I was impressed with the color Plum Noir as it has such an opaque color. If I want an intense look, I apply it directly to my lips from the bullet. But you could also build it up to your own liking using a lip brush. Both of which still gives you the lasting color you want. I would advice that you should moisturize your lips beforehand, otherwise the color will sink into the lines of your lips.


If you want a glossy effect, you can choose the Luxe Lip Liquid High Shine. This formula is made with 3-D light refracting pigments along with moisture spheres. So it won’t leave your lips dry even if you wear it the whole day. My pick from this is the shade Mod Pink which fades beautifully as the day wears on. I also love how it looks quite natural if you blot it with a tissue.

For those who are fans of matte liquid lipsticks until now, Bobbi Brown has the Luxe Lip Velvet Matte. You’ll love the 12-hour wear and the colors which are derived from natural clay minerals. Infused with wild mango, this lipstick also has softening properties to give you that perfect pout. From this range, you’ll find an easy-to-wear nude in Double Bare but also fun shades like Blood Orange and Your Majesty.

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