Monday, January 28, 2019

Celeteque Clarifying Shampoo

My sister bought two bottles of Celeteque Clarifying Shampoos after her coworkers raved that it had effectively addressed their hair fall problem. One of them even gifted a bottle to another coworker who easily became a convert.

celeteque shampoo

Bottle blurb: Celeteque Dermoscience Hair and Scalp Care Clarifying Shampoo is once-a-week shampoo that helps remove residue build up from shampoo, conditioners and hair styling products, which makes hair look unhealthy, dull, and difficult to manage or style. After using this clarifying wash, go back to your favorite shampoo for the rest of the week to see how it will work even better for you.

How it works: 
  • cleanses hair and scalp thoroughly to remove dulling residue.
  • removes residue build up leaving hair and scalp incredibly clean.

Ingredients: Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Sodium Chloride, Fragrance, Sodium Citrate, Disodium EDTA, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Citric Acid

About my sister: she has fine, shoulder length hair. She suffers from hair fall and dry, itchy scalp. For some reason, conditioning her hair everyday solves her itchy scalp problem. Probably because of daily conditioning, her hair is quite soft to the touch. Her hair does not stay in place for long but it is manageable. 

After sudsing with Celeteque Clarifying Shampoo for a month, my sister felt it did not work for her. The amount hair strands that end up on her bedroom and bathroom floor didn't lessen. She also felt that it made her hair stiff, dry and frizzy on the days she used it even when she conditions her hair.

One time, she mistakenly used the shampoo during a workday. A representative from a salon whose name rhymes with rabid went to her workplace that day to supposedly pitch services their salon offers. The guy told my sister, "no offense.." then proceeded to say offensive things about her hair.

Needless to say, my sister and a couple of her co-workers were turned off by the attitude of said representative and have not and will not be availing the salon's services anytime soon. There are many other salons out there with better offers and regard for customers.

Still, my sister felt bad that she gave her bottles to me. Hey, her co-workers liked the shampoo. I get first dibs before her co-workers.

Celeteque Clarifying Shampoo's really mild scent does not stick around. It will not interfere with whatever else fragrance you use. While the shampoo lathers well on my palm, it does not foam as much on my hair. I've noticed that my hair felt stiff while wet but not so much after it has air-dried. Frizz is still an issue. I have thick hair so I don't worry about hair fall. I don't think I have lesser hair fall because of it.

I don't think I will be parting with the shampoo for now. I like the idea of having a sort of reset button for my hair when it starts to feel too weighed down by residues, oil and dirt. I'll just have to use it once a week when I am giving myself a thorough cleansing (scrubs, hand and foot spa, masks, etc.).

Monday, January 14, 2019

Nestle Milk Teas and Chili Garlic Sauces

Milk teas happen to be an "in" thing for teens judging from the amount of milk tea posts that appeared in my timeline in the last quarter of 2018. I don't know if this has something to do with Maymay Entrata's TV commercial Nestle Milk Teas.

nestea milk tea hokkaido
Chili garlic sauce and Nestea Hokkaido-Style Milk Tea

I'm no Maymay, but I'm so endorsing Nestle Milk Teas, the Hokkaido and Wintermelon variants. Have yet to try Thai and Taro since they are not available at Puregold where we do our grocery.  I like 'em best iced. They're already sweet, no need for sugar.

I was actually hesitant to get a box of these since I'm used to boiling tea and steeping tea bags. I thought they'd have synthetic taste to them since they're in powder form. They don't. I can taste the tea with milk and an extra flavor. I'm glad our neighbor gave us a box of the Hokkaido-style to try.

Nestea Hokkaido Style Milk Tea has a slight chocolate-y aftertaste.

bagoong chili garlic sauce
Bagoong chili garlic sauce and Nestea Wintermelon Milk Tea

I remember my brother and sister-in-law excitedly introducing wintermelon tea to us while we had hokkien mee at a food court somewhere in Suntec City, Singapore a decade ago. Two green cans with a picture of a gourd were plunked right in front of us.

"It tastes like gulaman drink but it says wintermelon on the label." Sister-in-law had said, urging us to lift the tabs and take gulps.

Upon tasting the tea, mom had asked, "does gulaman come from wintermelon?"

Well, no. It's from agar-agar which is from seaweed. Second year high school biology. Nerd alert. When she used to make gulaman drink, mom would mix vanilla extract and arnibal or brown sugar syrup to flavor the liquid.

And yet, wintermelon tea tastes somewhat like a gulaman drink. Caramel, but not vanilla, is listed as an ingredient in the can of the tea we consumed.

Nestea Wintermelon Milk Tea tastes as a wintermelon milk tea would. It's that can of wintermelon tea made creamy by milk. 

salted egg chili garlic sauce
Salted egg chili garlic sauce and (Hey! What are you doing in this pic?) Red Ribbon Almond Mamon.

Aside from Nestle Milk Teas, my sister and I are currently into chili garlic sauce (garlic paste with bird's eye chili flakes in oil). We get our supply from my sister's coworker's sister who makes and bottles sauces. She offers three chili garlic sauce variants: original, salted egg and bagoong or shrimp paste.

My fave is the Chili Garlic Salted Egg Sauce. It has real salted egg not salted egg powder so when you dig your spoon into the bottom of the jar, you're sure to get bits of it mixed with the garlic. The heat of the sauce is tapered off by the salted egg which also lends to it a certain creaminess.

The Chili Garlic Bagoong Sauce is slightly salty sweet and of course, shrimpy.

We have been adding chili garlic sauces to our dishes, as panimpla or condiment and to give them that oomph. Pancit, noodles and lomi, siomai and dimsums, sauteed dishes particularly veggies, fried rice, etc.

I am excited to know what 2019's trending food will be. For now, I'm quite happy with our jars of chili garlic sauces, boxes of milk teas, packages of brownies, chocolate chip cookies and faux chicken skin. The latter three are for a later story.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Of Wanting to Escape and Club Balai Isabel Body Lotion

They say that the best time to book/go to resorts in Luzon would be November because by then the rainy season would almost have been over (except for the Bicol region, Palawan and Mindoro. Mom's from Bicol and she'd always tell us that it's usually rainy in her hometown by the end of the year. Also, storms normally traverse the southern part of the country come the last quarter.) and it's not yet tourist peak season. Rates are more affordable, not much people.

But then November and December are months when work peaks. Add preparations for the holidays and I'm very much swimming, no, drowning in too much to do when I would much rather want to be swimming in not chlorinated water. Chances are higher that I will drown in caffeine trying to keep awake with just five-hour-sleep-utmost-a-day which I suspect I will be having until the year ends, than I will go out of town this coming long weekend. By the time I'm able to lift my head from under tons of papers, wrappers and otherwise, it would be too cold to soak in anywhere else other than a hot water-filled bathtub.

What am I doing writing this when I have my hands full you ask? Weeelll, I did say in my "about me-ow" page this blog is my form of escape.

ylang ylang lotion

So escape... Instead of bitching further, I've been beaching. I've painted my nails in Caronia Goddess. A Festively frosted blue green. I've been downing melons and watermelons which are surprisingly abundant in the nearby market right now. I've been de-stressing through aromatherapy.

This Club Balai Isabel Greaseless Body Lotion with Ilang-Ilang Essence is just what I need to decompress. The smell is different from Angel's Breath Gold EDT which is buoyed by citrus notes. Club Balai Isabel Greaseless Body Lotion is pure ylang-ylang. More of a fragrance lotion than a moisturizer, its heavy scent lasts for hours. Much like Bali Alus Jasmine Body Scrub, the scent largely reminds me of churches, leis, spas and massages.

This lotion was a gift, purchased from Club Balai Isabel's souvenir shop. I've never been to Club Balai Isabel so I wouldn't be able to tell if their hotel room toiletries has similarities to this lotion.