Wednesday, December 9, 2015

I'm a Panda

Trying to be less of a panda.
I don't know where I got it from. None in my family is or was a panda. But these pesky dark circles under my eyes are really... pesky.

I thought - to become more like my fellow humans - it was time for some kind of anti-dark circles banisher stopper. And these are what I’ve been using regularly except for the Purederm Sunflower Dark Circle Reducer which I tried only twice.

Guardian Bye Bye 'Panda Eyes' Cocoa Brightening Eye Mask [Guardian]

The Guardian 'Panda Eyes' was among the first eye masks I tried. There are two in each sachet - one for each side. The masks are larger than expected and cover almost half of my cheeks - maybe they thought my face would be as big as a panda's. There's generous amount of product on the mask, and it's literally dripping wet; and because of that there's a slight cooling effect upon putting the mask on. What I like about this is that it hydrates not only my under eye but also my hands from the overspill.

There's no immediate lightening of my dark circles, but my fine lines appear to have smoothened a little almost immediately, which I'm happy about. As with other skincare, the yardstick in my book is whether it irritates my skin or not. The answer is no and yes. Yes - only because I got some on my waterline while trying to rub in the excess product after use and it itched a little; other than that no adverse reactions whatsoever. 

The only thing I have against this mask is the snail secretion filtrate, which in layman's term, is snail slime, or snail goo or snail sweat [I made that last one up]. This particular ingredient is not listed on the package but is listed on Guardian's website. And to be honest I have long stopped reading and researching each and every ingredient in a skincare or makeup. One explanation I can think of is that the ingredients on my pack are a new formula and the ones listed on Guardian's website are from the older one [could be the other way round though]. I don't have anything against snail slime. Feel free to put them on your face if you want to. I just can't get over the image of me having a snail on my face.

Purederm Sunflower Dark Circle Reducer Eye Patches [Amazon | eBay]

Doesn’t drip - that's probably the only good thing I can say about this eye mask. There's really nothing bad about it; I mean it doesn't irritate my skin since we all know how sensitive under eyes can be. But the thing is, it doesn't feel like my skin is absorbing any of the products on the mask. The mask looks like one of those medicated plasters with the product on one side of the strip. You simply peel the mask off the plastic protector and affix it to your skin and it will stay there until it's time to remove it.

It doesn't appear to smoothen lines like the Guardian's Panda Eyes does, and most importantly it doesn't seem to lighten my dark circles. To be fair, on my second use, after pressing down the eye patches a bit harder, I was able to feel the products on my skin, and I think adding a tiny bit of water might aid the absorption - it doesn't say so in the instruction and I haven’t tried it. I don't feel these patches are effective enough and have stopped using them.

Garnier Light Complete Multi-Action Brightening Eye Roll-On [Amazon | eBay]

The only one out of the trio here that's not a patch. It comes in a wand-like applicator with a steel ball which provides an easy apply-and-run system - just don’t forget to open the door first. This by the way is not to be confused with the Garnier's Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Eye Roller which also acts as a concealer and in a nude-coloured wand/stick. The one I'm using is in a yellow stick and produces a transparent serum that doesn't conceal dark circles in any way.

The steel ball seems to provide a cooling effect, but if it's hot out there you'll still need something like a fridge to get the same effect. It doesn’t say anywhere on the package how or when to use it. I use it after washing and drying my face; and like any other roll-on, simply roll the ball on the skin twice a day. You don't even have to press the applicator hard; just lightly roll the tip as the serum comes out easily. I find that it's best to apply this before a moisturiser, because twice now I've got an itchy spot due to a possible contamination - applying the roll-on first seems to eliminate that problem.

Garnier claims that this roll-on also decreases puffiness. Unfortunately, [or maybe fortunately actually] I don't have puffy eyes so can't really comment on that.

I have been using this roll-on for a few months almost religiously twice a day, but I can't say that my dark circles have reduced or being completely erased off. What I can absolutely confirm is that it reduces my fine lines. To be fair when you see a problem on the surface or in this case on the skin, there's always a problem, or maybe more, underneath. So, you’ve got to deal with that also, and no amount of skincare can help you - I learned this from my acne experience.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Did You Know That Google Wishes You a Happy Birthday?

Oh, how nice of you Google!
I’m so behind with these things; apparently this goes back to 2010, and for five years I’ve been missing out on it. Maybe I have noticed it at some point but disregarded it because it’s not important... I mean, it’s not like I’m chummy with Google or anything, and I tend to ignore anything that resembles some form of a… gimmick. But today, as I opened my browser, and Google being my default search engine, paying no attention to the cakes and candles doodle; I had my cursor over the doodle and it was wishing me a happy birthday by name. But of course today is my birthday otherwise I would be surprised or terribly unimpressed if it wasn’t. I figured Google knows this by my Google profile, since I don’t have or haven't upgraded to Google Plus [see, I’m not chummy with Google].

Apparently, for five years now Google has been wishing everyone a happy birthday with a special doodle on its homepage. According to Mashable, if you click on the doodle you will be brought to your Google profile and will be surprised even more with virtual streamers, a cupcake and a ‘Happy Birthday’ message; but that was five years ago. Clicking on the doodle now will bring you to your Google Plus page, which of course as stated above, I don’t have.

I have mixed feelings about this. Of course I assume nobody else knows about my birthday, apart from my family and friends and those I told them about, and if I hadn't written about it here. But this whole thing in some way serves as a reminder, at least to me, to be careful with my personal information - what I sign up for and what information I willingly give up. Sometimes because the service provider you’re signing up with is a huge company like Google, you tend to have some sort of a ‘relative faith’ to give up some of your personal information; that they have the resources to protect your information. But how many times have you given up your privacy in exchange for something in return or out of necessity, and before you know it they know more than you initially intended.

I tend to have a bit of a distrust with technology, or rather the information-gathering part. You're always at the mercy [in this case] of service providers; for example when they change policies or if they 'opt-in' for you by default. I’ve had an image hosting provider turned my private photos public by default before. Thankfully I didn’t have many photos in that account and the photos were not so private in nature. Going back to Google, I have to say that Google has so far never done anything like that to me. But when was the last time you actually did read and understand the terms and conditions of a service? Recently? Every time? I guess it's just me then.