About Me

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
I don't endorse any brands for money. I am just genuinely passionate about products that work well and are worth investing on. I was inspired to blog because I have found so many advice and tips that have helped me greatly through reading blogs. Now it is my time to give back by sharing my secrets and great finds :D. I hope it helps you too :)

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Misadventures: Flying and the wonders of QANTAS

There is something you should know about me......
I've had a bad history when it comes to flying because I'm disorganized and I've always opted for the cheaper option by flying Tiger Airways (flying domestic).
As a result, it has in turn costed me more time and money:
-I was late ten minutes to check in to my flight home, costing me $150 to book another airline home because the last flight to Sydney (with Tiger Airways) was at 7. I had to wait until 10 to fly home with Jetstar.
-A few days after booking my flight with Tiger Airways, I wanted to add check in luggage. It took me frustratingly 3 hours to get in contact with a phone representative to change the details of my flight and there was an additional cost. This was all because Tiger Airways does not allow you to manage your booking online.
So when I booked my flight with QANTAS recently, it was a breath of fresh air:
I had to book a flight from Melbourne to Sydney for 3 people. It was the last day of domestic flights sales, I was half awake from a long days work and attempting to book online when I had no glasses on. Fortunately unlike Tiger Airways, QANTAS gives you the option of paying with BPAY which doesn't cost any additional service fees. On the downside, I was waiting anxiously for 2 days for my payment to process and to receive my itinerary in an email. So you could just imagine the heart attack I got when I noticed that I had instead  booked a flight from Sydney to Melbourne! I tried to manage my booking on the QANTAS website but the only option it didn't have was to change the flight destinations. I grabbed the phone to call and it only took me 10 minutes max to get hold of them. QANTAS' policy is that any changes made to your flight over the 24 hour period is FREE of charge. So even though it should have costed me an extra $44 per person to change my flights (since it had costed more to fly from Melbourne to Sydney), I didn't have to pay a single cent! :D Not to mention the phone representative was pleasant to talk to despite the inconvenience I had caused.
So what I learnt from this whole ordeal is that if you're as bad as I am at flying, you should probably book with a reputable Airline like QANTAS. It will most likely save you more time and money. ;)

Monday, 22 July 2013

Our deal food adventure: Havana Beach Cafe Manly

I was extremely fortunate to grab a deal locally for 4 people from OurDeal.com.au:
A meal for 2 (I bought 2 deals to make it for 4 people) + drinks in Manly for only $22!

Name and Location:
Havana Beach Cafe and Lounge
3/14 South Steyne
Manly NSW

It's located in the corner of Manly, away from the main strip of restaurants so you wouldn't stumble across it unless you know about it. It's a smaller, more quiet and peaceful venue with a great view of the beach from the upstairs level.

The meal included:
A choice of these burgers:

HB Burger: Beef and chorizo patty topped with roasted capsicum, tomato, onion and mustard.

- Bower Burger: Beef patty topped with bacon, cheese, lettuce, tomato and garlic aioli.

Pollo Cuban: Grilled breast of chilli lime chicken topped with corn salsa and chipotle mayo. Accompany your burger with a side of curly fries each (value $6 each).

A choice of sweet potato chips or curly fries on the side

And a choice of beer, wine or a selection of Havana's huge range of Mojitos.

Photographed above: HB Burger with curly fries and Vanilla Cassis Mojito

All four of us chose different burgers and all of us enjoyed it! :) The burgers there could easily make it in my top 2 list of best burgers I've ever tasted (Maybe even taking the number one spot ;) ). 
Curly fries were amazing (as usual). 
The mojitos were fabulous as well! 

We were all in awe that this had only costed us $11 each! Drinks in Manly itself costs $11 or more, let alone a good quality meal to go with it as well!

It had definitely deserved a blog post because this restaurant is worth going to regardless of the discount voucher. 
Havana Beach on Urbanspoon

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Food adventures: Mizuya Japanese restaurant and KAREOKE

I was supposed to blog about this ages ago but I found myself hesitating because I have extremely bad photos to share which doesn't do this place justice. Once you're inside, you're fighting over the mics to sing as many songs as possible, so I lost focus and took really bad photos :(. I decided to post because now is probably the best time to share with you my recent experience...
Mizuya has just updated their songs so you can have more music to sing...Yay! Mizuya has changed their microphones to improve your kareoke experience!!!Before, some of the microphones were taped up and faulty. So now is better than any other time to check it out!

Location: Basement, 614 George St, Sydney: Located in the most convenient location, right opposite Event Cinemas, it's a hard one to miss. I come to this place religiously because you get the best kareoke (and food) experience in Sydney, I dare say the best kareoke experience in Australia.
You order your food via touchscreen which is very convenient.
Price wise: Is very cheap if you come around 11:30AM-5:30PM. You get $20 Minimum food and Beverage spend + 2 hours of kareoke.
 To get the best deal you should come around lunch time because they offer lunch deals for only $9.80! This gives you extra cash to spend on drinks or my favourite dessert: Oreo parfait!!!! In the lunch deal you get a main (from a variety of options), miso soup and your own choice of  rice or udon.
Above photo: Chicken Karaage lunch set

Above photo: Sushi (salmon) lunch set

Above photo:test tube shots
My opinion is that Mizuya specializes in its deep fried food varieties especially potato mochi!!! So if you're you're on a diet...unfortunately you'll be missing out :(.

Mizuya Japanese Restaurant and Karaoke on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Favorite mascara: Majolica Majorca Lash Enamel Glamour Volume on

I don't tend to opt for black mascaras. This is because of my eye shape (getting panda eyes is unavoidable for me) unless I use a really good waterproof/smudge-proof mascara.
I was convinced to purchase this product when I was researching that Japanese mascaras were the best.
I chose Majolica Majorca because this brand is connected to Shiseido and it has really cute packaging :).

I was at first hesitant of the shape of the brush as from past experiences odd shaped brushes=disaster and marketing scam. With a little bit of practice as well as trial and error, I came to love this brush shape. It gives you volume and length without looking clumpy. My favorite way to apply mascara was the card trick but I find this brush is so effective that I don't even need to use the trick anymore.
The mascara's formula compliments the brush. 
It has great holding power- If you want a more natural finish you can just dot the mascara close to the lash line for it to hold the curls. It lasts the entire day.
It's the best smudge-proof mascara I have tried so far- It's not a miracle worker as I still need to swipe underneath my eye but I find the time gap is significantly longer. I can wear this for a few hours without needing to go to a mirror to check. I am happy to repurchase this product in black :)
The formula is very waterproof- You'll need a good make-up remover. Some people complain about it's lasting power but for me that's a good thing as I never touch up on mascara throughout the day. 
The formula is build-able- With all mascaras you will need practice to get used to it but this formula is very build-able. You can add on layers to give both volume and length.

At the time the Aussie dollar was high so I purchased it for around $16 (price of shipping included) on ebay. Now it's around $17.50. 

Verdict-This mascara is superior than both high end  and average mascaras. The price is reasonable considering that you're getting it at half the price of a high end mascara. It's not the cheapest price considering that decent mascaras can be purchased for around $10 but the quality is what makes it worth the extra dollars. I'm definitely going to repurchase this product.    

Note: Before I use mascara, I curl them with Shiseido's eyelash curler. For those I who don't curl their lashes before applying mascara I highly recommend it. Check out my other blog for more details: http://supercrownjulz.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/the-secret-to-fake-looking-lashes.html

Friday, 31 May 2013

Vivid Food Adventure: Umi Kaiten Zushi

I was only aware of Umi Kaiten Zushi when I was invited by my friend to eat there because she had a voucher which gave us 25% off the total bill which was about to expire. I had little expectations and an extremely empty stomach (I had a busy day at work).
Location: Shop 1, lower ground floor of the Sydney Central building (477 Pitt Street). It was a little challenging to find (since I'm terrible at operating Google maps on mobile).
We sat in the sushi train area instead of the dining tables, facing the fish and observing the talented and comical sushi chefs.

The sushi was bursting with flavor, the consistency/texture was perfect, I dare say this was the best sushi I've ever had! The fried fish was yummy as well. I was so busy eating, I forgot to take pictures of all the dishes haha! No complaints whatsoever! My personal favorites were salmon and scallop. Here was some photos I managed to take:

While I was eating sushi and observing the various dishes travel around the train, I saw my favorite dessert: Black Sesame. I'm a sucker for desserts with black sesame so I grabbed some black sesame pudding. I was so happy because I haven't had black sesame dessert in ages! It definitely satisfied my craving! :)   
I ate way too much for my liking (I sense a winter weight gain coming) but I was extremely happy with my dining experience and good service. I will be coming back for more in the near future :). 
In addition to dining at Umi Kaitzen Zushi, I attempted to burn the calories by walking to Circular Quay to check out Vivid Sydney 2013. 

Umi Kaiten-Zushi on Urbanspoon

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Best Budget BB cream: Holika Holika Clearing Petit BB cream

I am currently re-obsessed with BB creams! I am currently trying a couple of different types and will be making more posts some time in the future.
I was convinced to purchase Holika Holika's Clearing Petit BB cream because it was so cheap!  Only $6 for 30ml of product from ebay (posts worldwide)! I was crossing my fingers hoping that it would give good results and YES! It did deliver!
Consistency-thinner than Tony Moly's BB cream so it's easier to apply. 
Coverage-covered redness, acne and dark circles underneath my eye. So overall, good coverage :D
SPF-30PA ++ 
Oil Control-Suprisingly very good, better than the average BB cream (high end and low end) but not as good as Tony Moly's triple expert BB cream.
Lasting Power-Once again like the oil control, surprisingly good. Better than the average BB cream (high end and low end) but not as good as Tony Moly's triple expert BB cream.
Finish- Perfect! I personally opt for photoready, high coverage look so I use BB creams as a make-up base. Make-up looks better with BB cream as a base. You can especially notice it when you use concealer. The finish is a lot smoother.

Verdict: If you're looking for a budget BB cream with good oil control (rare find), this is the product for you!!! :D This would be the second best BB cream I've tried, regardless of price (which is a bonus).

Friday, 24 May 2013

Exfoliator: Cure Natural Aqua Gel + Best Dupe: Daiso Peeling Gel Water Pack Jelly

Cure Natural Aqua Gel is one of those exfoliators you either extremely love or hate. People love it for the squeaky clean feeling and the residue of 'dead skin' that is visible after application. Personally, I am not 100% convinced it is dead skin, but am still satisfied with the clean feeling it leaves on your skin.
The only extreme downside is that it costs a lot of money.
Cure Natural Aqua Gel only comes in one size and so you are forced to purchase 250ml of product and pay from $40 (from ebay) and more. I paid $60 at the time in a store in Melbourne which sold products imported from Japan. Because of this, many people are hesitant to try it.
Note: I didn't want to provide a picture of mine because it has been extremely used and abused and is not photogenic :(.

Fortunately, I have managed to find a great dupe which is a fraction of the price: $2.80 for 50ml of product!
Daiso's Peeling Gel: Water Pack Jelly also known as Ellefar Peeling Gel. Once again I have managed to find a great dupe from Daiso. I found this one by accident in the Daiso store in Haymarket (such a convenient location to drop by and visit).

This product is more translucent and a little thicker in consistency in comparison to the Cure Natural Aqua Gel.

What you can see in the photos above is that lighting and angles can make a big effect on how you look on camera! By looking at the before and after shots, it looks like it's a tanning gel! Haha! The photo on the left is Daiso's Peeling Gel on my hand and on the right is the residue of 'dead skin' that is left on my hand after rubbing the product in for about 1 minute.
Although it's a little different in those aspects, I find the results are the same. So now there's less to lose. Give it a try ;).