Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 3: 명동 (Myeongdong) & Skincare Haul

Today the 6 of us went to 명동 (Myeongdong) which is one of the popular shopping districts of Seoul. It is absolutely littered with makeup stores, clothing stores etc and it's very much directed at the younger generation. 

I didn't take that many pictures today because I do plan on going back again (possibly tomorrow?) at night time.

Many of the people who work at Myeongdong speak both Korean and Japanese. Some stores (especially skincare/makeup stores) will even have staff who speak Chinese. The restaurant we went to had a Japanese worker so Saaya and Andy were able to converse with him freely. We even managed to get a small discount off our bill.

The store I was most interested in (aside from the makeup stores) was the SPAO store. Their clothes seem quite nice - good quality and reasonably priced. I may go back and pick up a few things.  And also SM Entertainment's Everysing. SPAO is endorsed heavily by SM artists and the top floor sells SM Artist merchandise. It was interesting rifling through it all, but I wouldn't buy anything there. 

I'm not a fan merchandise buying type of person. I think it's tacky when people pull out folders etc with celebrity faces.

For dinner, Q and I ate at the station's little Japanese style restaurant. It's super cheap and it's not bad! 

We went to a nearby market to buy some fruit because we haven't had any fruit since we've arrived. Fruit can be really expensive here and there isn't a lot of variety. We got something like 25 mandarins for 2000KRW (about $2AUD).

This is my current adaptor set up. The adaptor won't fit into the socket properly, so until I can find either a power board or an adaptor that fits, this is how I'm charging my devices.

My haul from today was mostly skincare. I was in Aritaum because I was interested in their eyeshadow. There was a specific one I wanted: Golden Khaki.
I remember cl2425 talking about it in one of her Korean haul videos so I wanted to try it out for myself. 

There was a buy one get one free event. When the sales assistant told me about it, I looked at her blankly because I didn't understand her. It hit Q after a little bit and I picked up a brown eyeshadow too.

I also picked up a few Laneige products. There was a promotion going on - spend 100,000KRW or more and receive 20% off. 

I was determined to pick up a new skincare routine, so I settled with these products. 
L-R: Multiberry Yogurt Pack, White Plus Renew Essence, Light Power Essential Skin Refiner and Multi Cleanser. 
I plan on picking up a few more skin care products but those can wait since I still have samples to use up.

I also picked up a new planner from Artbox. They have a huge variety of planners, notebooks, accessories and other random things. I wanted to buy the whole store, but I controlled myself and bought only the planner. 
The pens I bought from a stationery store near my house. 

I'm so tired... we walked around so much today.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

New Chapter: Seoul Winter 2012-2013

I'm in South Korea now! 

I arrived yesterday at about 4:30pm (Korean Time). The reality of finally being in Korea hit me when I saw the Han River (한강) from the plane window. I haven't felt homesick yet. That reality hasn't struck me just yet. 

It took Brigritte and I over an hour to get to Gwanak-gu (관악구) via the Airport Limousine bus. I suspect it's because of traffic. I think the best way to go anywhere from the airport is by subway. It isn't affected by traffic and it gets you into Seoul much quicker. 

With the help of Brigritte's friend, I settled into my accommodation. I'm staying at a Goshiwon (고시원). A Goshiwon is a type of accommodation that is fairly cheap. They offer single rooms and the rooms come with a desk, fridge and bed. Some come with private toilet/shower facilites, while others don't even have windows. The cheaper ones will not have private bathroom facilities in their rooms. 

I didn't want to share a bathroom with about 10-20 strangers over 10 weeks, so I found a Goshiwon that had a private bathroom. The rent is ₩400,000 (which is roughly AUD$400) per month. I've found accommodation for 220,000 but they don't offer private bathrooms at all. Rent is charged per month (which is the minimum stay). 

This is my tiny room. I don't have space to put my suitcase anywhere other than on the ground where the walking space is (this is mostly because my suitcase is massive). I may do a more detailed post about accommodation in Korea later; just leave a comment below if you're interested!

Totoro slippers that were gifted from my friend John :) A little something to remind me of home.

Dinner, night 1 was at a kimbab restaurant. There are a lot of these types of restaurants around. They're cheap and they're not bad in terms of quality. It resembles home cooked food for me so I was quite happy with it. 

I also got a T-money card. T-money card works very much like a Myki in Melbourne (you touch on and off when you're on public transport). However, it works so much better than Myki (which isn't hard since the Myki system is total rubbish). You can also use these in convenience stores and the like too. You can buy them from machines at subway stations or from convenience stores. It comes in a little box which I found totally adorable. 

Today was the day of the placement test. This determines which level program we should be doing. To be perfectly honest, my Korean skills are terrible so I wasn't expecting to make it to level 2. I find learning languages especially difficult for some reason. I've always been a fast learner and the fact that I found learning a language really difficult was discouraging. But I'm determined to do well and consolidate my (very) shaky foundation.

Before the test though, I went for breakfast at Paris Baguette. Paris Baguette is very much like Breadtop, Bread Kingdom and Hana Bakery in Melbourne. Paris Baguette is everywhere. My breakfast consisted of a Croque Monsieur (which is a French ham and cheese sandwich) and a latte. I didn't notice that the coffee isn't as rich as what I'm used to in Melbourne because of the sugar I put in it. They have a tendency to make the milk really hot for some reason.

After the placement test, I went shopping for some homewares and stationery (which I will feature in a later post) and ate lunch - 자장면!

자장면 (jajangmyeon) is basically black bean sauce on top of noodles. It's derived from the Chinese 炸酱面 but it's a little different.

 One of the more interesting finds at the convenience store. Peach iced tea in a bag! It's really sweet though, even more so than the Lipton/Nestea ones at home.

Day 2 dinner was chicken from hell. We (the 6 of us that came from Melbourne) wanted to eat chicken. Passing by the KFC, we went to a chicken restaurant and ordered two of these. We didn't realise at the time how big the servings were. I think in general, the serving sizes in Korea are a lot bigger than what we expect them to be at the price that they are. At first glance, I saw all the chillies in the dish and doubted my ability to actually eat it. 

And I was right.

It's like a tiny step down from Crazy Wings. My lips were prickling and burning. I couldn't stand it after eating about 2 pieces of chicken. Saaya and Brigritte steadily ate (spicy tanks!) and we managed to finish one plate as well as a third of the second plate. 

I ended up getting some stuff from Paris Baguette for dinner. 

Pony xx

Thursday, November 8, 2012

2013 Goals

I think I need to set my goals for 2013, just so I can get a head start on them now and make good habits out of them...

Oh boy.

  1. Attend every single lecture and tutorial: I have some discipline issues with this. A lot of the time I enjoy socialising too much to bring myself to actually get up and go to lectures. I guess this semester's attendance was a hell lot better than my first 3 semesters at uni. MUST. TRY. TO ATTEND. I need to bribe myself or something...  
  2. Study at the library: This one might help me with the no. 1. I figure if I spend more time at the library instead of hanging out at uni, I'll be more inclined to attend lectures.
I tried to keep it brief. I think if I went with too many goals, it would overwhelm me and it would just end badly.

I have an inability to save money. However, things have died down since I first started working. I don't want so many things anymore, which should help my cause.
  1. Computer parts: I want to build a new desktop for myself, for gaming mostly. I don't want my Macbook Pro to be filled with movies and games that will just distract me from study.
  2. Cosplay: I'm going to PAX Melbourne (whoo!) and I really want to cosplay. I don't want to buy a cosplay costume.. I want to make it and materials can get pricey. 
  3. No Impulse Purchasing: This is what most of my money goes to (next to food). I think I need to adopt the mantra from 'Confessions of a Shopaholic'.
  4. Hong Kong: I want to go to Hong Kong during the summer of 2013/2014 with my friend. So I definitely want to save up for that.
  5. Use up all my makeup: I don't need anymore makeup! I haven't hit pan on anything so I really want to use up at least one of each type of makeup product. 
  1. Keeping Current Friends: As enjoyable as meeting new people is, I think I really want to consolidate on my existing friendships. I'm not one to need a lot of friends, just a few close ones makes me just as happy if not more. 
  2. Boys: I'm not going to hope for this one.
  1. Blogging: I definitely want to try make more of an effort with this blog. I think I just need to find a style of blogging and things to blog about. My day to day life isn't too interesting to talk about. Next year, I want to switch my focus to gaming and maybe life tips that I've picked up?
  2. Gaming: I let this go while I was in high school. My parents were very strict on me until Year 12 and I didn't get much of a chance to really try new games and improve my skills at strategy and theorycraft. League of Legends is definitely the game I want to master ... or attempt to master. 
  3. Streaming: This ties in with the last one. I kind of want to start this after I finish building my gaming computer.
  4. Drawing: I was never an excellent drawer, and I would really like to improve. 
  5. Piano: I think I really want to get back to piano. Just, playing and not thinking.

  1. Write down all my thoughts: I bought a moleskin today and I plan to use it for errant, rampant thoughts. It will help me calm myself and not be so overruled by my emotions.
  2. Swear less: It'll help with rage.
  3. Lots of exercise: I want to lose 10-15kg by May next year which is definitely achievable in my opinion. Not only is this for my health and self esteem, it's for cosplay too.
I will add more if I can think of them.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Beauty Favourites - Spring 2012

I haven't been buying any makeup products for the last few months since I've been trying to use up my current collection of makeup. I'm one to believe that there's no point in hoarding hundreds of makeup products because you only have one face and there's only so much makeup you can put on your face without it looking ridiculous. 

Hence, I'm going to share my favourites from my collection for Spring 2012.

Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream
My first ever skin base product and it's still my favourite. The shade I currently use is No. 23 but it's a little light for my skin tone. Missha have recently released a new shade - No.27 - which I want to get my hands on, but I'm going to wait until I go to Korea to purchase it. 
For me, this BB cream covers my light blemishes fairly well and it doesn't result in my skin looking dry. Most foundations tend to make the skin around my nose look really dry, but this BB cream doesn't do this at all. 

Majolica Majorca Puff De Cheeks - PK301
I received this as a birthday gift. The packaging is so pretty! At first I didn't really like to use it as it was too light and didn't show up as much as my other blushes. I started using it again a few weeks ago, and it's perfect for spring. It is a subtle light coral pink shade and it gives the perfect flush for the doll face look.

Urban Decay Brow Box - Brown Sugar
I use the lighter shade exclusively on my brows since my eyebrows aren't that sparse to begin with.

Too Faced Naked Eye Palette
I enjoy this so much more than the Urban Decay Naked Eye Palette. While the UD Naked Eye Palette has a lot of pigment, I find it too showy and intense for my tastes. The Too Faced Naked Eye Palette comes with a matte black and more light colours which are wonderful for the spring.

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler - Limited Edition Gold
I love this! If you have trouble curling your lashes because the curler doesn't sit right against your eye, try the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler. I haven't had it snag my eyelid yet!

 Urban Decay Primer Potion
I have oily eyelids, so primer is a must for me. This is the only one I've tried, as it works very well. It comes in a squeeze tube design which is a huge improvement from its predecessor - the doe foot applicator.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Pencil - Zero
This eyeliner is hands down the best I've tried. My friend Jen, was kind enough to give me a mini pencil and I haven't looked back since. It's dark and it doesn't smear on my eyelid (which is more than I can say for other eyeliners - gel and pencil). I also have a brown one which I like as well.

Ameli Cake Eyeshadow - Sweet Diamond
This is my favourite eyeshadow if I want to do the sweet, doll like look (Louis Vuitton S/S 2012 Makeup). It's a pink with a lot of gold shimmer. It's lovely if you put it just on the ball of your eye.

Maybelline One By One Mascara
I've always like Maybelline mascaras. I think of all of the drugstore brands, Maybelline make the best ones. My favourite is the Volume Express Falsies - the volume is wonderful and it doesn't clump. However, the One By One Mascara offers clean defined lashes and it is great for everyday - even on its own it looks good because it doesn't clump

Unfortunately, I don't have any lip favourites. I'm still looking for a nice pink lipstick that looks nice on my skin tone.

So, there are my Spring 2012 beauty favourites. What are your favourite products for this season?