Becoming a redhead

…Was one of the best things I did this year.

Sure, I’ve done a lot of other things with my life in 2012 probably more worthy of an honorable mention on my blog sensibly speaking (such as working hard to lose 10kg of fats, moving out of my parents’ place and renting an apartment of my own) but you know what…

Having a head full of fire kinda gave me a whole new identity. 

It made me change the way I styled my clothes, myself, and it prompted me to bother to dress up more often to suit my loud tresses. And I guess it even changed the way people looked at me. It screams personality, and it gives people a little insight to who you are just by first glance.

Unnaturally loud hair colors are almost like visible tattoos on a person’s body. It is there to serve as a statement. They say something about you that you wanna tell the world. I am me, hear me roar. Not everyone will approve of it, certainly not everybody will think its pretty or cool…. but YOU like it, and that’s what matters most, because it makes you, more you. I suppose this reasoning applies to hairstyles in general, not just wild hair colors.

Now, you don’t want to make the mistake of entrusting your precious hair to just ANY salon. The last time I went to a random salon to do my hair, my permed hair ended up looking like pubic hair. :’) It took me many months to grow it back after I cut it all off..You don’t even understand how many hair catastrophes I had to go through to finally settle down with a hair color + style + condition I’m more than satisfied with.

These days, I get my hair touched up and maintained at Shunji Matsuo 313 every other month! And I always walk out of there feeling amazing. AND FIERCE. ;)

The friendly and lovely stylists there take care of all my hair coloring, styling, cutting and treatment needs.

Here is my stylist, Eddie, tying pretty little intricate braids for me when I requested for “a different look” from my usual.

Because I’d previously bleached my hair to get an ombre-purple-pink style earlier this year (at a different salon, not Shunji Matsuo) my hair ends were awfully dry after negligent care (as it always is when you have to bleach your poor hair!), on the verge of breaking and splitting too easily. After religiously going back to do treatments every month, my hair condition has improved leaps and bounds!!

My all-time favorite hair treatment that Shunji Matsuo 313 offers is this 100% Organic Curement Treatment!

Using all natural herbs and oils from mother nature, this 4 step herbal treatment is suitable for people seeking more volume and shine for their hair, and especially good for super dry hair like I had. The difference is instant, noticeable and most importantly, long lasting. More treatments only result in my hair looking and feeling good for a few days tops, but my hair felt softer for weeks. I highly recommend trying this at Shunji Matsuo 313 if you have hair in need of urgent repair! Pricing for this treatment ranges from $101 – 155, depending on your individual hair length.

If you’ve been following my blog long enough, you can do a comparison of my hair BEFORE I started visiting Shunji Matsuo (Somerset 313 outlet) and after… judge the difference for yourself.

Pictures can do the convincing better than my words can.



This is what I call a true crowning glory!!!! ♥ ♥ ♥

You can compare the Before and After effects from the pictures above and below this chunk of text. The pretty “After”math is the pic above – luscious healthy hair with treatment done, and robust color. The not-so-pretty “Before” pic below… faded red, roots growing out, noticeably drier texture.

Thanks to my stylist’s advice and concern, Eddie has also provided home treatments for me to DIY at home, which I believe is an important factor as well because you can’t possibly go to a salon every single week – you need to be able to maintain it yourself at home! If you visit Shunji Matsuo 313, ask them more about home care products that would suit you. After switching shampoos and conditioner upon their recommendation, my hair fall rate (which used to be a big balding issue) has decreased significantly, and my hair tangles less often. I’m using Matrix Biolage range and loving the results so far!

Thank you Shunji Matsuo 313 for giving a head full of hair that I can be proud of. I am happy to say I almost never have bad hair days any more… every day is a good hair day!!!

Shunji Matsuo Hair Salon @ 313
313 Orchard Road, #03-26,
313@Somerset, Singapore 238895
+65 6238 0226
Email: lovehair@shunjimatsuo313.com.sg

Alternatively, find them on Facebook here. Mention or quote “Shiberty” for 10% off certain services!

To sidetrack a little, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had random strangers come up to me, smile and say “I love your hair!!!”. It ALWAYS makes me grin instantly, not just because someone is giving me a compliment, but because its not everyday you have a reason for people you don’t know to approach you and say something nice to you. They don’t have to do it, but they do it anyway. And living in Singapore where it is uncommon for everyday people to be nice for no apparent reason, I lap up every opportunity I get. It’s like how I always smile and appreciate it when someone who walks by me says, “Good day!”. It might not have been accurately so, but because of those two words, it probably will turn out to be a better one after all.

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess

Christmas in Bali

Can you believe Christmas is over already?!

It went as quickly as it came. I don’t even know how my family and I ended up spending our Christmas in Bali. *scratches head*

When we were discussing Christmas plans, someone said something, someday, along the lines of “The Christmas atmosphere in Bali is great! There’s lots of white tourists here so there will be plenty of Christmas lights and atmosphere.” It would be fun, they said…. It would be a good place to spend Christmas, they said……. *shakes fist in the air*

All I felt was sweltering heat and intolerable humidity about three times worse than Singapore!! It was my first time there so I can’t say I wasn’t totally taken aback and surprised by how different it was from the way Bali is always portrayed in movies and in marketing advertisements. I thought it would be serene, peaceful, beautiful… On the contrary, people there were actually rather rude and rowdy, and the tourist area was anything but peaceful! To be fair, when we drove into the country side (at least an hour away from the city) it WAS a lot quieter and greener.. so maybe next time I visit, I’ll go stay around Ubud, to see “the real Bali”. I thought the touristy part of Bali (Kuta, Seminyak, Nusa Dua etc) would be like Phuket, boy was I wrong.. Phuket is in fact, a lot milder! Bali was really something else. A real eye opener. There was pretty much zero Christmassy atmosphere in the whole of Bali because most of the locals there at Hindus. People all around couldn’t even be bothered it was Christmas.

But that didn’t stop us from having a jolly good time! Having said all of this, the trip was still super fun and a great experience, despite being different from my expectations.

We spent our days stuffing our faces with traditional Balinese food and Western fine dining cuisine, doing massages and spa treatments, and shopped till we dropped. For the first time, I wasn’t snapping photos of every single thing I was doing when I was traveling. It was difficult to resist the urge, but I wanted to lay off my camera and phone as much as possible, to soak up all the precious time I had with my loved ones. It’s not everyday we get to bond overseas like this! Disconnect to connect, y’know?! Only really snapped pics when we visited the tourist hot spots like Ku De Ta, Potato Head, Tanah Lot… The rest, I only managed to take mental photos of, and they will be mine to keep.

When people talk about Bali, they will either mention the temples, food or beaches. However, my favorite thing about Bali happens to be the shopping. I never thought I would ever say this, but the shopping in Bali is COMPLETELY out of this world!! It definitely has the most amount of beautiful boutiques I have ever seen clustered together!!!! Streets after street of non-stop shopping is what you’ll find in the Seminyak area. I can’t believe I forgot to snap a picture of the shopping district to show y’all!!! I was too busy trying on clothes every second I spent there. I would go back to Bali again just to shop there until I’m broke. Bangkok, please step aside. The type of clothing you’ll find in Bali was a match made in heaven for a girl like me… summery, unique, bright colored stunning pieces from independent designers at decent to cheap prices (depending where you shop at). I came back with like 20 new pieces of pretty clothing – needless to say my bank account took a hit. But it was all worth it!!!! I can’t say “I’ve got nothing to wear” for at least another few more months now. :)

Most importantly, the best thing that happened in Bali was having the luxury of spending quality time with my family, creating unforgettable memories together. Food, presents and family is everything I love about Christmas and I’m glad I got to indulge in those things every day. I have so much to be thankful for this year. Thank you mummy & UJ for buying me so many pretty things to make me happy and also for taking me on this vacation for Christmas!! ♥

Here’s a photo diary of my vacation to Bali below!

Bali from the clouds. Takes about 3 hours to fly there from SG!

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Checking into our lush accommodation – Padma Resort!

 We’d originally booked a three room villa to stay in, but that turned out to be THE worst hotel experience I’ve had in my life. You won’t even believe how bad that was. That story will be for another post. Today’s post is meant to be a happy, carefree one. Thank god Padma Resort was top notch and made us feel so much better.

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Hello, Janice and Jeremy. My brother and his gf makes a rare appearance on my blog, lol.

Getting them to take pictures is really difficult. I had to lie to them that I wasn’t going to post them on my blog. Woops!

Our first dinner was alfresco dining at Warisan!

Crab, pomelo, avocado and tomato roulade

Red capcisum & lobster linguine

Lost count of the number of foie gras we ate in Bali. Working to lose weight now after all the festive feasting damage done over the past month!!!

Panna cotta is one of my all time favorite desserts!

Gorgeous set up, isn’t it? All the places we had dinner at were great. Bali is full of cafes & restaurants serving up good food at reasonable prices!

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Next day’s lunch next to a rice field.

Bali is so strange some times.

You get fancy boutiques selling designer clothes with each item costing at least $100 SGD and rightttt next to it you’ll find a rice paddy field. I guess that’s what people like about it – a commercialized place they can visit that still has its old cultural charms?

An hour’s drive out of the city into the countryside, we were surrounded by rice paddy fields stretching as far as the eye could see!!! Made for a very scenic drive indeed.

Thank you for taking care of me and being so nice throughout the trip! :) xx

Spot one of Bali’s most photogenic icons, Tanah Lot Temple behind me!!!

All those people (tiny figures in the background) standing at the base of the temple are crazyyy. They risk being drenched by crashing sea waves any time! In fact I saw a couple of people get really wet, with their DSLRs in hand. The whole area is covered with sea water when its high tide.

It looks so rustic and majestic, perched right at the water’s edge. I wish we could’ve gone in and taken a look around… but entrance to the temple is sacred, and reserved for local Balinese Hindus only!

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Best thing I bought that trip were these SGD $1 fans that kept me from dying.

Sunset seaside dining at Potato Head, which everyone says is the place to be seen and to be in Bali!

Crab cake with avocados and caramelized pineapples

Cajun prawns

Halfway through our meal, we ran out onto the beach to snap these mandatory sunset shots..

My ice cream on my creme brulee melted as a consequence but I reckon these shots are well worth it!!! I like runny ice cream anyway. :P

This was supposed to be “RAWR I BREATHE FIRE” kinda photo but I think I failed. I look like I’m letting out a ginormous burp.

The Balinese sunset in its full glory ♥

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Christmas dinner!!! Best meal of the trip award goes to Metis restaurant, hands down.

If you’re wondering why there are so many pictures of meal times and what else we were doing in Bali inbetween, you’d find us in changing rooms in boutiques or half asleep on massage beds.

Uh-huh more foie gras! I felt like a foie gras duck by the end of every meal.

My angus rib eye steak was melt-in-your-mouth-juices-bursting-with-every-bite kinda fantastic. It was so good, I almost wanted to cry. Really.

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The end of my rather brief photo diary! See you next time for shopping, Bali.

I hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas with your family / friends as well!!! Happy New Year everyone! Wishing you all the mostest of love, luck, wealth and happiness.

 Love.

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess

6 girls, 1 picnic, tons of fun!!!

I can’t remember the last time I had a picnic in Singapore.

Wait a minute…. I think it might have been never, ever. I believe I’ve never actually had a picnic in Singapore – who in their right mind would be interested in sitting out in the scorching sun when you live in Singapore?! We get too much sun and heat as it is everyday! Well, thank god these girls are absolutely out of their minds, just like me!!! I’m so glad we decided to go ahead with this idea because it turned out to be such a good time despite the dreary weather, which was surprisingly kind to us that afternoon :)

Hellooo pretty ladies! From L-R: Ziwei, Bun (Juli), Amanda.

And this is Jayme and Diana!

Before I bombard you guys with smiley, bright, happy photos of ourselves looking crazy / pretty (whichever you prefer), here’s something I have to say.

I’ve been spending a decent amount of time getting to really know these people recently. I realize the last I’d had a proper clique of all-girls-friends like this was in high school. The friendship didn’t end on a high note, which left me relatively scarred and afraid to be part of girl cliques again because it somehow always leads to unwanted drama, backstabbing or sucking up one way or another. I’m sure all girls reading this can echo an Amen in unison. When you put 2 girls together, they’re fine, 3 girls and its a mess, 4 girls and above… run for your life!!! Generally I prefer to keep mostly individual friends from different parts of my life, or if its a group it would be a mixed guy-and-girl sort of thing to use the guys to tone the bitchiness down… but this time I feel like its different.

I met these girls on my sponsored trip to Genting to film with Reelity TV and we’ve been getting on unexpectedly well together ever since! There is no sense of hierarchy, needless drama involved or unnecessary implications or strings attached… which I love. Just a bunch of very different girls from various walks of life coming together with the pure intention of making new friends, simple as it is. I’d like to keep this friendship the way it is, and I hope it remains this way –  innocent, full of laughter and surprises.. never a dull moment.

Picnic mats laid out, we plop down on a grassy green patch in the middle of Marina Barrage!

Can you believe its my first time here?

I’m always hanging out at Marina Bay Sands but I never bothered going to Marina Barrage despite it being in the proximity… lazy bum. Oh what a view and nice chill-out place I’ve missed out on! So much space to run around on trimmed clean fields of grass and be young & silly. Anyone who hasn’t been here before should plan a picnic for a lazy late afternoon. Bring yummeh food, your camera, umbrellas and speakers to play your favorite music from!

Or you can be like the others & fly a kite in the blue skies… if you can get it up in the air.

I made awesome chocolatey chewy brownies for the picnic!!!

Using my recipe I’ve blogged about before here. I was gonna bring cupcakes, but they would have melted immediately in the sun. I thought the heat might’ve made my fudgey brownies even fudgier and yummy if they’re slightly melted instead. :P

The white bits in my brownies are chocolate mint cookies which I threw into my brownie batter and baked together! It gave it a nice little crunch and minty flavor to break up the chocolateyness.

Some of the stuff that the girls brought: a big salad, egg sandwiches, cherry tomatoes, ham, korean rice wine and cheese tofu (super random items)

..You didn’t think that was all we’d eat, did you?

It was Diana’s brilliant idea to order KFC crispy chicken. I’m not a fan of fried chicken, but it seemed especially tempting that day!!!

We ended up over-ordering so much we could barely finish half of the portion! What a waste. And I can’t believe some of the girls actually ate some of the remaining chicken after it was left in a cold hotel room for hours… cold soggy KFC hahah ewww.

What started out as mild sunny weather with nice breezes turned into strong winds and an overkill sun. Which did THIS to my cheap $8 H&M umbrella. Mary Poppins gone wrong.

I adore how you can see MBS and the skyline in all our pictures!!! It’s so iconic and pretty.

Ziwei and Bunz look too adorable here to not post this picture up!

Wee-u-weet!! Wind swept look!

Group piccy!!!!!!!!!

These here, are my GG – Genting Girlies, Gossip Girls, …Gungho Gangsters..

May 2013 bring about more wild days of us girls wreaking havoc in subtle ways days out like this!!! I know the 5 of you will be reading this!

The kind soul who helped us snap the above group shots. He was so bashful around us, it was funny. Diana nudged me and said “Eh maybe we / someone should take a picture with him, he helped us take so many pictures” and I said ok.

Next moment I’m all like “SCUSE ME MY FRIEND THINKS YOU’RE CUTE CAN SHE TAKE A PICTURE WITH YOU???”

Aaaaaaahahahaha. Hence the half snarl half smile on Diana’s face!!!!

Too adorbs. :)

Had I known the pictures would turned out this nice I’d get down on the grass too instead of being a prissy princess and refusing to!

The older I get, the more I really appreciate living in a safe and beautiful city such as Singapore. Just look at how much its grown over the past few years.

Laughing and smiling becomes instantly contagious whenever I’m around them!

 JAYME WHY YOUR FACE ALWAYS LIKE THAT!!!

I’ve learned that not expecting too much out of people you meet will result in more pleasant surprises. Managing expectations, and being the friend you want people to be for you, is important.

I don’t need my friends to hang out with me everyday, or all the time, and its cool if we don’t yet understand each other completely. We don’t need to be BFFs, you don’t have to always agree with me or like the things that I do.

All I ask is that those who choose to share a friendship with me will accept me the way I am – lame jokes, candid antics, outspokenness and all. That they will ignore my superficial past, hearsay stories, and other things I have done and will not judge me for things they do not know the full truth to. People who will be upfront with me about how they feel about me. To look past our differences and to simply enjoy each others company despite how different we all are… to just live while we’re young. It’s okay if you’re not always ready to share my tears with me as long as you’re willing to break out in fits of laughter whenever we’re together. All of this, is a friend enough for me.

You girls make up some 5 beautiful friends ♥

Of course, having common hobbies like singing, make up, frivolous fashion and blogging also add on to our chemistry. And a ridiculous sense of humor is a MUST. See below for evidence.

Diana and Bun kung-fu fighting in the air!!

Jayme and Ziwei attempting a sexy hair flip. While I’m taking these pictures I’m screamin’ “WERK IT!!!!!!!”

Super sexy bitches signing off!

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess
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