. Shop for STILA at ZALORA .

 I’m a Korean cosmetic girl at heart (no thanks to the gorgeous Korean ladies who guest-star on Running Man) but I have heard a lot of raves about the fantastic makeup line under the Stila brand. With unique products and vibrant colours, Stila is today a fashion style on its own. Its goal is to help every woman celebrate her own sense of beauty – To look and feel like the best version of herself and of course, to have fun doing it! 

Now, you don’t have to head all the way to USA or the departmental stores to get your hands on your favourite Stila items. Save time and enjoy a hassle-free experience when you shop for STILA at ZALORA !

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My favourite Stila items:

Stila One Step Correct: These days, I’m a lazy bum so the best type of product for me is an all-inclusive beauty product that caters to my needs. Want something to brighten, prime and nourish your skin? Well, you got it easy with the innovative Stila One Step Correct serum!

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Stila Waterproof Eyeliner: My essential makeup tool! The black/blue eyeliner – It’s simply something I cannot live without and the main reason why my eyes look fresh even though I’m half asleep most of the time. Stila has always been known for its wide range of long-lasting and waterproof eyeliner that stays defined and bold throughout the day. Goodbye to those annoying and pesky smudges!  

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Stila Lip Glaze: I’m not a fan of lipsticks but lip gloss? Bring it on! The delicious lip gloss adds a sexy shine to the lips and often compliments the smoky eye look. Just the perfect item to pucker up those alluring lips for the special someone!

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. Explore: Campuhan Ridge, Ubud .

 One of my favourite thing to do during a vacation is to sneak in some sort of adrenaline-pumping activity as I’m addicted to the thrill of an adrenaline rush. There were originally plans for me to embark on a white water rafting adventure down the mighty Telaga Waja River; however, at the last minute, I decided to eschew any forms of adventure and simply enjoy Bali in peace and solitude. A quick search on the internet brought my attention to the breath-taking Campuhan Ridge, which takes one into the beautiful and unspoiled rice fields of Ubud. I was sold. There is no better way to enjoy Ubud other than to take in the idyllic sights of its countryside that is still relatively undisturbed by tourism.

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The hike to Campuhan Ridge begins at the entrance of the Warwick Ibah Luxury Villas & Spa, where you should spot a sign stating that it takes 2km to trek up to the famous Karsa Kafe (a restaurant that overlooks a beautiful rice field, also known as the pitstop for most hikers).
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The trail will also take you past the historical Gunung Lebah Temple, which was constructed in the 8th century by Danghyang Markandya, the man who was believed to have introduced Hinduism to the island of Bali. PhotoGrid_1424570121758

The spectacular view that greets me on New Year’s Day :) The hike was pretty easy and leisure (not much of a challenge for those who are looking for a workout), and I would highly recommend anyone to do it early morning before the afternoon sun comes out. Plus, if you are lucky, you might just get parts of the trail all to yourself! 
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artist at workAlong the way, I also met a female painter, Wayan, who brought me on a mini tour to her family’s art studio and introduced me to the miniature painting techniques that are required for egg painting. I might be no professional painter but I do enjoy dabbling in arts & craft during my leisure time, so it was such a privilege for me to be able to observe an artist at work. In fact, I have crazy dreams of taking a mini sabbatical to head to Bali and pick up a painting/ art course. Just for the fun of it. Call me a professional dreamer!

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Haven’t your parents often tell you not to enter into a stranger’s house? Well, I guess I broke the rule. It was along the rocky path beyond Karsa Kafe that I suddenly caught a glimpse of a “hanging” wooden bridge in the midst of the green foliage. Curious, I decided to peep around when an elderly man shouted to invite me to his humble abode. Throwing caution to the wind, I decided to venture beyond the bridge and was surprised to be greeted by the sight of a wooden tree-house! I <3 tree-houses!

Despite the language barrier, the elderly man tried his best in making me feel at home by sharing with me pictures of his family and playing musical tunes on the traditional Balinese instrument (I think it was the gamelan). The house was built single-handedly by him and it provides a great respite for anyone who wanted to escape from the hustle and bustle of main street Ubud.

This serendipitous encounter is just one of the many that I had during my first solo trip in Bali and I know that such personal experiences would not have been possible, had I been travelling with others (especially with cautious friends)! I guess that’s the reason why so many people have opted to travel solo once they caught the bug … You end up making more friends and creating authentic experiences! :) 

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 This is the time in your life where you have the least amount to lose by taking some long-shot risks, so you should take them. Because its the disastrous failures of these years — that crazy love affair with the Taiwanese dancer that made your mother lose her hair, or the entrepreneurial joint venture some guy in Starbucks talked you into that turned out to be an elaborate pyramid scheme — it’s these failures that will set you up for your life successes down the line. They are the best lessons of your life. Get learning.

. the independent traveler: flying solo for the first time .

WOW. Where do I even begin?

As everyone would have known by now, 2014 has been an extremely dramatic and life-changing year  for me. The perfect life? It was far from it. Throwing caution to the wind, I decided to celebrate the end of the year by doing something courageous that I have always wanted to do for the longest time. Yet, fear has been the one main factor that prevented me from accomplishing that goal.

With a new-found sense of courage, I decided to embark on my first ever solo trip and usher into the new year alone. Like most people, I was afraid of taking that step out of the well-trodden path but once I did, there was no turning back. It is often said that solo travel allows one to enjoy a country on his or her own terms and through that exhilarating journey, they might learn to re-discover parts of themselves that they never knew existed. For me, I went for this solo trip, expecting to spend the bulk of my time alone. Frankly, I was perfectly fine with doing most things alone because I have always had that independent streak in me and my personal belief is that life waits for no one. Waiting might simply translate to missed opportunities. What I found out, at the end of the trip, was that travelling solo brings forth way more interaction and socializing than one could get, if they were to travel with their family or friends.

During my 4 days stay in Bali, I had serendipitous encounters with people from all walks of life – Locals from the tourism industry, artists, medicine woman, primary school kids, and travelers from other parts of the world. Surprisingly, not only did I managed to gain cultural insights from my conversations with them, but I was also very lucky to foster deep and meaningful connections with some of these people. In fact, 2 months down the road, I am still in touch with some of the people whom I have met during my trip.

My first trip might be short but it wasn’t one without an adventure of a lifetime. On the eve of New Year, I drank a little too much (and that’s because I’m a terrible drinker), got drunk and my vision literally went blank while I was dining alone. Horrors of horrors. Had I been in a shady area, I could have been robbed, raped or kidnapped. Lady luck must have been on my side because the drunk episode turned out to be a blessing in disguise as I ended up meeting the Prince of Ubud, spending the rest of the night with the lovely marketing manager (who is now, a friend of mine) before celebrating the NYE countdown in style with the restaurant crew! Serendipity? You bet. Along the way, I also cooked a Balinese meal with a local family in their home compound, met my own version of Ketut Liyer (for those of you who read ‘Eat, Pray, Love’, you would know what I’m talking about) – an old lady who flashed her boobs at me, had an unexpected lunch with an American who turned out to be working in Singapore,  and played ‘Santa’ to a group of kids in a local primary school.

My decision to start 2015 with a solo trip was one of the best choices of my life. All it takes is 1 moment of insane courage. But a lifetime of unforgettable memories and experiences. And trust me, once you start travelling alone, chances are that you will become addicted to it because it is so much more rewarding and enriching. Now, just remember that life waits for no one … So, take that leap of faith and give solo travel a try! :) 

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What does solo travel means to me? 

Freedom. Fulfillment. Self-confidence. Excitement. Being in control – not needing to be accountable to others. Spontaneity. Serendipitous experiences. And more important, a journey to explore more about myself and grow in ways that I can never learn from my school or workplace.

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. match-mini spotted at the mobile library .

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. girls gone wild @ montigo resort .

Girls gone wild? Well, I was lying … Our girly weekend was a lot tamer than the headline but I did catch your attention, didn’t I? Montigo Resort @ Nongsa needs no introduction as it is an extremely popular weekend destination for many Singaporeans from all walks of life. Whether you are looking for a romantic rendezvous with your significant other, a fun-filled staycation with your friends or a relaxing holiday with your family, Montigo Resort offers it all. It prides itself as “the ultimate escape for generations to come”.

After a very tough month at work, I was all ready to kick back and enjoy a respite from the stress and tension happening in the office. A short getaway with my girlfriends (Shermin, Soy, CC) in the comfort of our own pool villa sounded like a fantastic idea, especially when it costs a fraction of the cost as compared to pool villas in Singapore. We booked the seafront & spa villa so that we get to enjoy unobstructed views of the lush greenery and blue sea (but do note that the view is sadly, quite depressing during low tide). I must say that the views were surprisingly spectacular as one would have never expected the island of Batam to boast such scenic sights! There were even times when I tried to make-believe that I was actually vacationing in Greece instead of Batam! Hahaha. Oh, the joy of day-dreaming! :)

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Our seafront villa comes with a living room on the ground floor, 2 huge bedrooms with attached bathrooms on the 2nd floor and a sky terrace at the top floor. Think minimalistic concept.
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The main reason why we were at Montigo – Our own private infinity pool that overlooks the pristine South China Sea and offers breathtaking view of coastline. It’s certainly our favourite place as we spent the bulk of our time frolicking and chilling at the pool. Had my ‘girls gone wild’ plan succeeded, I would have gone for skinny dipping … The perfect activity for some sexy fun!
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The spa villa also comes with a private cabana hut and beanbag – Great for the lazy souls to laze around with a book!
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The in-villa BBQ was highly recommended by Shermin’s friend and she was pretty insistent that we had to give it a shot. Thank god for her persistence because it was BBQ at its best – We had our own personal chef and butler, both of whom rendered excellent customer service! Happy tummies, happy souls.

You might like to note that we ordered the BBQ set for 2 pax even though we had 4 pax; The serving portion was sufficient for relatively small-eaters like us. We opted to have the in-villa dining by the poolside although you can always choose to have it at the rooftop to enjoy a 360 degrees view of the surroundings!

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Deal Not To Be Missed – Montigo Spring Celebration!
Enjoy $50 dining/spa cash voucher, on top of 25% off the Best Available Rate when you book a luxurious stay with Montigo Resort from now till 31 March 2015. It’s time to spring into 2015 with a pampering treat for yourself!

For more details, check out http://www.montigoresorts.com/nongsa/! Now, don’t say that I don’t share good deals with you guys! :p 

. Look Gorgeous with Sephora @ ZALORA SG .

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While I enjoy buying clothes and shoes at heavily discounted prices (i’m a huge fan of SALE and pre-loved items), beauty products is something that I will not scrimp and save on. A quick glance at my dressing table will reveal that I’m a proud owner of many facial masks of all sorts, a wide array of lip gloss with varying shades and a basket full of unused body fragrance! Save me, it seems like someone has a serious addiction to vanity.

That’s why it is no surprise that an addict like me will flock to a leading brand such as Sephora to get my daily beauty essentials. One of my favourite online shopping site, ZALORA, carries an extensive collection of Sephora in-house products that caters to all your beauty needs. Think, medium palette makeup bag, luxurious sugar body scrub, travel size perfumes and many more! Oh, the joy of satisfying my inner beauty goddess with just a click away!

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As a beauty trailblazer, Sephora also carries an impressive assortment of top beauty brands such as Stila, Make Up For Ever, SKINC among many others. With so many choices, it’s easy for any shopper to get lost in the sea of advertising messages.

Well, fret not as ZALORA makes online shopping easier for you by coming up with a specially curated list of Editor’s picks and top sellers. Best of all, spend over $40 and you can get your beauty haul delivered right to your doorstep for free! With various payment methods like cash on delivery, shopping can’t get any easier.

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Shop for your favourite beauty products at the Sephora Collection on ZALORA.