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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

ION Insider: Beauty Talk with YSL, Estee Lauder & Dior Backstage

I have to confess, I am quite the shopping consummate. So when I heard that ION Orchard is looking for a ION Insider (read:first dibs!) whose on the pulse of all things fashion, beauty, food and lifestyle, this author was beyond thrilled to be chosen as one of nine ladies in the beauty bloggers selection. On a bustling Wednesday, we were lined up to meet 3 leading beauty brands and chronicle our journey in the process.

10.00am: Becasse Bakery
(ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn, 
#04-27, 32 Orchard, Singapore 238801)

Starting the morning off right, was a rousing hearty breakfast at the Becasse Bakery where I met up with my fellow ION Insider bloggers. This French bakery offers a diverse variety of artisan pastries, tortes and deserts, and replicates the luxe dining experience in Paris.The menu featured an array of its popular Afternoon High Tea (3pm-6pm) tea treats, as well as some of its much loved breakfast menu.

Amongst a lineup of mouthful delights which were just a tad too sweet for me for such an early morning calling, we had 4 main dishes from their breakfast menu. First up was the Mixed berry French toast, served with poached pear & fresh ricotta. A well balanced savoury taste of the french toast with a dash of saccharine berry puree will tickle those with a sweet tooth. 

Breakfast cannot be complete without the quintessential egg dish: this Egg royal, served with smoked salmon, baked spinach & Hollandaise sauce is hence, a not to be missed. The poached egg was well controlled with smooth texture and runny yolk, and salmon flesh almost melts in your mouth. 

The most filling dish would Croque Madame, on brioche bread served with truffle oil baked eggs. Lightly toasted, the bread is crisp to the bite with slices of ham and the undeniable fragrance of truffle oil just sends my appetite into overdrive.  

I think this was my favourite dish of the day: Pulled chicken crepe, served with fresh spinach & wild mushrooms. It was the soft crepe flesh coupled perfectly with tender chicken portions. The fresh burst of spinach and mushroom added a savoury dimension to this light-hearted dish. Comfort food!

10.30 am: YSL
(ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn, #B2-34, 32 Orchard, Singapore 238801)

Recharged and ready to go, we headed to our first stop: the Yves Saint Laurent store. Allow me to just say, I like the fact that the store still retains the original namesake instead of its revamped Saint Laurent name. The store was the epitome of opulence and minimalist elegance with its gold and black glossy interior. The makeup look featured today is a smokey day look (sounds paradoxical, I know) thats both worksafe without losing the glam factor.

Beauty trainer Francis first prepped the model's face using the youth serum to help brighten complexion and prime the face for better application. In sweltering Singapore, it is never advisable to leave without a form of SPF protection, which came in the form of the YSL Top Secret UV Shield. Now that's done, blemishes and uneven skin tone were covered up with the YSL Teint Touche Eclat Foundation and its unmistakable iconic Touche Eclat Highlighter pen.

The trick to using the concealer-highlighter: is to line it where you imagine a light shining from top would hit. Namely, under the brow bone, down the nose line, around the lips perimeter, the nasal labia area and along the cheekbone)
Here are some of the products used to create that chic look:

1 & 2) Francis used soft strokes of Couture Palette in Parisienne and Tuxedo to create a light gradient effect to define her eyes.
 3) Quick dashes of YSL Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils Waterproof mascara to volumize lashes. 4) For a burst of color, I loved how versatile the Baby Doll Kiss & Blush Lips & Cheeks was, a dab on the apple of cheeks and a lips gives instant color and the perfect finishing touch!

10.45am: Estee Lauder
(ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn, #B2-42, 32 Orchard, Singapore 238801)

Next was Estee Lauder, where their resident beauty trainer Alyssa reiterate the Estee Lauder trademark 3 minute beauty technique because they feel that's all the time women need to achieve effortless pulled-together look. This definitely made me perk up as I am usually pressed for time preparing for work and I'm always keen to hear about time-saving tips.

1 &2) Alyssa mixed first mixed the illuminating primer together with their double wear concealer, and blended it into model Irfi's face. This doubles up as a base that helps makeup sit and stays on face better. 3) An interesting tip I gleamed was how to accentuate your lips with 2 easy steps: dab abit of the double wear blush on glow on the cupid's bow (curve of your upper lips), and dusting a highlighting / light shimmery powder around the lip. 4) Dab only on the center of the lips to give the illusion of full, luscious lips. 

I liked how easy it was to apply the Estee Lauder’s Double-wear Brush on Glow pen:
a) Draw 2 figure “C”s around the outer and inner eye contour and blend to give fatigue eyes a pick-me-up or,
b) Illuminate the face by drawing a "3"  starting from just above the brow bone curving down under the eye and then back down to the outer corner of the mouth hugging the curve around the nose, then blend.

The end result (not as obvious on film) is a more luminous and refreshed look; a fast and pretty easy-to-remember routine to have that instant makeup refresher after a long tired day.

Here are some of the products used for the makeup demo. One thing that I liked about the range is how we can build our beauty regimes to multi-task and maximize the use of skincare + cosmetics together. A novel but very practical idea that I can't wait to try out! 

Despite a relatively compact store space, I was surprised to find out that behind the check-out area belied a very luxe and stylish consultation area where customers can seek personal sessions with Estee Lauder beauty consultants in total comfort and privacy.

1130am: Dior Backstage
(ION Orchard, 2 Orchard Turn, #B2-44/46, 32 Orchard, Singapore 238801)

Last but definitely not the least was the newly minted Dior Backstage; and the first of its standalone storefront. The interior design is a concept story, and it seeks to recreate that electrifying atmosphere of a back stage show complete with changing strobe lights.  It is the only place to exclusively stock Backstage Pro makeup products and tools; and Dior fans can look forward to being pampered with bespoke services, makeovers, even exciting Backstage Shows featuring Dior International Makeup Pro Team and Regional Makeup Artists!

Possibly a sight for sore eyes (or lips): a DIOR lipstick roulette table that you can spin!
Place your bets!

Venture a little further in and you will find a beautiful stretch that is their fragrance corner.  Have your sense of smell tantalised with its multitude of smell fragrance fla├žons, where you have a chance to identify and mix your very own special perfume. Here, you can expect evergreen classical scents like its iconic J’Adore and Miss Dior, and latest arrival of Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet.

Leading the demo was Beauty Consultant Vivian, who was as dynamic as the vibrant look she was working. She leads the demo with Dream Skin serum, which is recommended as a great base in reducing fine lines and evening skintone, to name a few. The consistency when applied was simply velvety and lightweight, leaving a matte afterfeel.

1) Vivian sprayed Dior Airflash, a unique lightweight spray-on foundation to give a translucent, airbrushed finish. You can choose to either spray-on or spray on a foundation brush as shown here before blending onto face, which gives better control to blend over specific problem areas. 2) Blend into the crevices of the 3) Using the Dior Skin Flash Radiance booster pen, she highlighted and blended into the brow bone area to conceal stray brows strands, and to draw light and give that lifting effect.

Two products used that I absolutely loved was the Diorskin Rosy Glow: a blusher that reacts with the temperature of the skin to give a subtle flush. Depending on the skin type, the shade will vary to give a one-of-a-kind shade to suit almost everyone! And matching that, the best-selling Dior Addict Lip Glow  – can you believe that one is sold every 15 minutes?! A lip balm that similarly responds to the unique chemistry of the user’s lips to produce a uniquely customized color. 

The end result: a barely-there look that defined the best features of the models face, au naturel but with just enough accentuation to bring out her doe-like eyes and pouty lips. I am amazed at her alabaster-like complexion, its flawless!

Picture was not edited
So there you have it, 3 different beauty brands with very different beauty philosophies and looks. Feeling inspired? All three boutique stores are located at Basement 2 of ION Orchard, amongst the alcove of other beauty brands such as Bobby Brown, Shu Uemura and Kiehls all on the same floor for your convenience!

Mini Beauty Review 

Apart from the joy of being a Beauty ION Insider, the cherry ontop of the cake has surely got to be the review goodies we were given to test out personally! I started off with the YSL Forever Youth Liberator range (miniature) which consists of a cleanser, serum, lotion and creme. Pure luxury: my face well hydrated and refreshed, and being rich just small amounts will suffice. Plus, my virgin use of the YSL Forever Light Creator CC Creme (in Rose): although it felt a tad sticky after application, I love the luminance in my complexion with red patches nearly non-visible.   

I'm always on the lookout for products that gives a lightweight feeling but do not compromise on the
With the Estee Lauder Double Wear All Day Glow and Brush-On Glow, it glides like a dream and its easy to now achieve (or fake) a naturally glowy complexion. The Pure Color Envy lipstick (very moisturisng and no-bleed) and Nail Lacquer are in the same medium-pink hue of Pink Dragon, which is not too ostentatious for work. My lips can now match my manicure, tres chic!

For the Dior collection which was in my opinion had the prettiest packaging, and we got the essentials for some showstopping eyes with the Dior Addict It-Lash and It-Line. The former is highly pigmented with just one swipe of its wand, while I love that It Lash really helped open up my droopy lashes with its non-clumpy formula. Even the prettiest lipstick shade is useless unless you have luscious puckers, which you can achieve with the Lip Glow Reviver Glam. Finish off with a spritz of an unforgettable scent that the Dior Addict or Dior Addict Eau Fraiche (I prefer this one better with its mellow sweet note).

It is always great to do things together with friends, and I am glad to have my darling Alene and Ena who are fellow participants too!

A big thank you to ION Orchard team for hosting us and giving us this memorable journey to getting to know some of our favourite beauty brands better. Do follow ION Orchard on Facebook and Instagram today for the latest promotions and happenings, and be a trend 'Insider' yourself!



  1. Nice post, dear... I personally love Estee Lauder and that 3 minutes beauty is their service at the counter if you need some "refreshment" (if I'm not mistaken).


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