Cashing in on cashmere cardigans
STYLE S.O.S. - Lucy Torres-Gomez, Rissa M. Samson, Tingting Cojuangco () - April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Dear Lucy,

If I wanted to add blazers or jackets to my work wardrobe, where could I get stylish but relaxed pieces?  Those that I can still wear outside the workplace?  How about skirts?  What styles should I look out for? 

Like you, I have also taken a liking to yoga and I am OC about cleanliness. How sure can I be that the mats provided in class are sanitized after every use?  I shiver at the thought that I might be absorbing somebody else’s sweat and germs.  Where do you get your yoga wear?

Lastly, what is your favorite lip balm?  How often do you apply?


Instead of blazers or jackets, why not invest in some great cardigans?  They are polished enough to go over your tailored office pieces but casual enough to use over the weekend.  Get really good-quality ones and if your budget will allow, I suggest you start investing in some cashmere cardigans.  It is a classic that will last you forever and ever. Provided, of course, you treat it well with some t.l.c. 

I’m sure you already have slim skirts so why not go for some in a fuller cut? They are very lady-like and charming.  You can wear them with pumps and ballet flats, with a strand of pearls around your neck.  It will look lovely. 

We are the same; I wondered about cleanliness when I started yoga, but the place I go to provides bottles of sanitizer that we can just spray on the mats. Recently, though, Kris came up with an even better solution. She got us skidless mats available at Aura Athletica and they are very pretty, not to mention absolutely hygienic.  Yoga wear I get from either Karma or Aura Athletica. 

Inexpensive lip balms work as well as pricey ones, but my top two favorites would have to be Kiehl’s and Smith’s Rosebud Salve.  The key really is having one handy when you need it so I suggest you get lots that you can scatter most everywhere. I always keep one each — in the bathroom, my kikay kit, my makeup bag, my bedside table, my yoga and dance bag,  my work desk.  They keep my lips luscious and moist 24/7 because I just hate cracked lips — no woman should be caught with dry, cracked lips.  They look terrible on a man and even more so on a woman.


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Clear Skin Starts With Good Cleansing

Dear Rissa,

I regularly follow your (and Ms. Cojuangco and Ms. Torres-Gomez’s) column in The Philippine Star and clip them for filing.  Now, I need your advice on some things.

• Please recommend a good astringent/ cleanser for me.  I am 33 years old and have oily skin (I usually have a few pimples before my period).  I use a facial foaming cleanser in the morning before going to the office and an astringent to remove makeup, dirt, and oil at night.  The reason why I don’t wash my face in the evening is that I use eyeglasses and the eye doctor told me that it’s a no-no to splash water on tired eyes.  I want to replace my astringent, I feel that it is too harsh/ strong for my skin and is causing me premature aging. 

• Can you also recommend a good and affordable moisturizer beauty product (for oily skin) that will take care of my dull and wrinkled complexion? 

Sheila C.

Like you, I have bad eyesight and wear graded contact lenses during the day and my eyeglasses when I get home. Despite this, washing my face day and night is part of my routine. I just always make sure my eyes are well-rested first before splashing water on my face. But for your routine where splashing water on tired eyes is a personal no-no, please make sure that you cleanse very thoroughly. For oily and acne-prone skin, it’s really important to keep the skin on your face free from dirt, oil and grime so that these don’t lead to clogged pores and pimples. Pores become clogged if there is too much sebum and too many dead skin cells. Bacteria can then get trapped inside the pores and multiply, causing swelling and redness — the start of acne. So good clear skin starts with good cleansing. Instead of having a one-step cleansing routine with a product such as an astringent or toner, incorporate makeup cleansing wipes as the first step to your evening routine to ensure a more thorough cleansing process. A great makeup remover is The Face Shop Herb Day Cleansing Wipes (P325 for 70 sheets and P95 for 20 sheets; stores located at Bonifacio High Street, The Fort; Glorietta 2, Makati; TriNoma; SM Megamall; SM Mall of Asia; and SM North Edsa). Formulated with botanical extracts and rosemary extract that purifies the skin, these convenient facial cleansing wipes purify the skin while cleansing it gently. I’ve tried these wipes as a makeup remover and they wipe makeup off very well. These wipes didn’t give me any stinging feeling — plus they smell really darn good!

After using the cleansing wipes, replace your harsh astringent with a milder cleansing toner. Your toner should keep oil under control without overdrying. I recommend L’Occitane Almond Apple Toning Cider (available at Rustan’s). For someone like you with oily skin where pores tend to be enlarged as well, this toner will suit you. The product description explains that this facial toner instantly tones and refreshes the skin and visibly refines its texture. Its gentle formula combines organic apple cider vinegar, to tighten pores and reduce their appearance, with the toning properties of almond proteins. The product promises skin that will be fresh, soft, and better toned, and pores that are tightened.

But remember, despite having oily skin, it’s essential to retain some of the skin’s natural moisturizers. When your skin loses its ability to retain moisture, it can result in dry, wrinkled skin over time. Your moisturizer should be oil-free yet replenish the moisture your skin needs. Water-based moisturizers are best because they are light, easily absorbed, and non-greasy. Try the Pond’s Clear Solutions Break-Out Control Lotion (available in leading departments stores, supermarkets, drugstores, and personal care stores) which is oil-free. This keeps your skin lightly moisturized but contains salicylic acid so it actively fights the pimples before they start. Keep in mind that when pores are unclogged and you get rid of excess sebum, clear and healthy skin gets a chance to develop. Another product I really like is Pond’s Age Miracle Overnight Repair Dream cream (also available in leading departments stores, supermarkets, drugstores, and personal care stores). This product will surely address your concern over dull and wrinkled complexion. Use this at night and you’ll be pleasantly surprised to wake up to soft, smooth, supple skin every morning. My sister has also become a fan of this product and shares that this dream cream has also ended her usual breakouts before her period.


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Yes, They Herb Something For Dandruff

Dear Ms. Tingting,

Do you know of any herbal home remedy for eliminating dandruff? I have dandruff and it’s been bothering me for quite some time now. I don’t want to be treated in a parlor because I’m ashamed. I have tried some anti-dandruff shampoos, but nothing helped. When I commute to work, I worry all the time that my dandruff may fall on my shoulders and back. It’s so embarrassing! Please help!


Here are some remedies that you can try at home. These are natural and generally safe and have been found effective in many cases of dandruff.

• Grate a coconut and extract thick milk from it. Apply on hair and leave overnight. Wash off with a mild shampoo. Repeat twice a week to find relief from dandruff.

• Put a few drops of Eucalyptus oil in coconut oil and massage into the scalp. Leave overnight and then shampoo. Repeat the treatment twice for a couple of weeks.

• Lemon juice also helps in restoring the pH balance of the scalp. Put a few drops of lemon juice in 15-20 ml. of coconut oil and massage into the hair. Leave overnight and wash off the next day to find hair shining and clean. Repeat the procedure a few times for two weeks.

These procedures rely upon massage to stimulate blood flow to the scalp, restoring the pH balance of the scalp and removing the dead cells to stimulate the growth of healthy skin cells, invigorating natural oil flow to the hair follicles by opening up the pores.

Try to use these treatments with discretion. But in case you suffer from excessive dandruff or itchy skin, I recommend you see a dermatologist right away.


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