August 29, 2011

Review: Nail Stickers

When I was still in Hawaii last year, I've seen these available to buy at my local Sephora. I've been wanting to try them ever since. I liked the idea that it was sticker. It seems very convenient because the design is already there and you don't have to struggle with the time-consuming act of designing your nails. If I had the talent and the time to design my own nails I'd probably have a blast doing it but…yeah. (lol)

I never bought them when I first saw because I wasn't about to spend $15 on something I never tried and was a bit skeptical about.

Since coming to Japan 100yen shops became one of my best friends. They have EVERYTHING and I mean EVERYTHING at 100yen shops. Nail stickers to try for the first time for 100yen? YES PLEASE! The designs they had were all cute too. I opted for the vertical stripes :)

It came with 2 sheets, each sheet with 10 nail stickers. One sheet was enough for both my hands. 

The steps are as follows:
1. Before peeling the sticker off, place the sheet over nail with the desired nail sticker size. 
2. Once decided, carefully peel sticker and place it on your nail.
3. Press down firmly all around, especially the edges. It's okay if there is excess, you'll be filing it off later. It's very important that there are no air bubbles!
4. Once firmly on, take your nail file and in an up & down motion, file off the excess. It should easily fall off.
5. Finished!
how it looks when you file it!
all done!

Before applying stickers, add a coat of nail polish or base coat onto your nails. It will help the sticker stick better and also create a protective barrier against the sticky adhesive.
After applying stickers, apply a top coat to seal the sticker in place.
If the stickers that you bought are EXTREMELY long, you may be able to cut it in half creating even more stickers to use in the future! :)

My thoughts:
Would I buy it again? I definitely would! Despite it being 100yen, these were pretty good! I've gotten many compliments and people never suspected the to be 100yen. 

The verdict:
Price: ✦✦✦✦✦ (Because it was 100yen, definitely a perfect score!)
Longevity: ✦✦✦✧✧ (It was nice and pretty for about a week or so but like any other nail polish, it eventually started chipping. Maybe the more high end nail stickers will last longer.)
Convenience: ✦✦✦✦✦ (Timesaving! Easy and no liquid mess or yucky smells! You also don't have to deal with drying time)

also got this cute headwrap from a 300yen shop!!! i just wanted to try it out and I love it so far~
Good for my lazy days ;)

August 26, 2011

Tower of the Sun ☀ 太陽の塔

"The Tower of the Sun is both a concrete tower and 
a work of art located in Expo Commemoration Park in Osaka, Japan. 
It was created by artist Tarō Okamoto for Expo '70. The tower has three sun faces: 
the face on the front represents the present; the face on top 
represents the future (looking forward); 
and the face on the back represents the past (looking back). 
The jagged red lines on the side of the tower represent thunder.
 The tower was originally housed in a larger building, 
with the top of the tower emerging through the top of the building. 
The building was removed in 1979, exposing the Tower of the Sun."

At work one of my students recommended I check out the Tower of the Sun located in Osaka. I was a bit hesitant at first thinking that I was gonna travel to Osaka just to see a tower. I enjoy and appreciate looking at great architectural structures and art so when I learned the meaning behind the Sun Tower I was intrigued. I also later learned that this place is full of romantic sceneries, monthly events and there's even a waterpark right next to it!

So once again, me and my friend, Bunkei, decided to add the tower to our sightseeing adventures! There was a small entrance fee of 250 yen to pay but it's well worth it.

August's event was the Sunflower Festival! Sunflowers are great symbols for summer and also one of my favorite types of flowers. I was happy we got to catch it right before this event ended. Most of the sunflowers were wilting but luckily we still found some that were full of life.

enjoying the sunflowers!!!
map & ticket, bunkei & her new-found love: spam musubi, duck boats, oh and me
this park had so many flower gardens!
Rose Gardens

vanilla & rose flavored ice cream! so good :) oh and salt & lychee drink?!
of course, jumping picture!
Coordinate for that day:
flowy tunic: RawEdge
wedges: Ropé picnic
denim shorts: Charlotte Russe
parasol: Daiso
wig: Linea-storia

I think this is a GREAT place to go on a date. The many flowery sceneries this place has to offer and the atmosphere are all very romantic. I do plan on returning to this place for the other events, with a  boyfriend or without a boyfriend!

If you'll be in the Kansai Area, some upcoming events for the rest of 2011 are:

October: Cosmos Festival
November: Koyo Festival
December: Illumination Fair


August 25, 2011

Fushimi Inari ❦ Ten Thousands of Red Gates

If you ever get the chance to visit Japan, I think that visiting Fushimi Inari is a must. I'm lucky to live 10 minutes away (by train) from this beautiful shrine.  It's also free and always open so you can always find time to fit visiting this shrine anytime of day!

"Fushimi Inari is noted for its remarkable sight of some 
10,000 small torii (shrine gates) that arch 
over a long path up the hill behind the shrine. 
It takes about two hours to walk along the whole trail, 
and there are nice views of Kyoto from the top."

You may also recognize this shrine in the 2005 film "Memoirs of a Geisha".  Since most of the movie was filmed around Kyoto, I realized that I was able to visit those same places that were featured in the movie!

(2005) 'Memoirs of a Geisha' - Sayuri running through the gates

I went with my friend from Taiwan, Bunkei. We enjoyed the Torii and the peaceful scenery Fushimi Inari offered. When my other friends heard we went they thought "are you crazy?" meaning, 'it's still summer! you must've been dying!' Luckily it was a cloudy day, still a bit humid but we were still able to enjoy. I do want to enjoy Fushimi Inari during different seasons and even possibly at night too.

Our photos that day:

At the Fushimi Inari train station. Last pic to the left was actually taken way into our hike up.


First things first! Temizu (more info here)

The engravings you see on the Torii are names of companies or families who have donated to the shrine
It's a must for me to have a jumping picture!

The Inari Kitsune. Regarded as messengers.

These were so cute and amusing! Kids are so creative haha.

Lunch break! I made some Hawaii Musubis!
 Bunkei's first time trying spam and she LOVED it and now she's hooked haha! 
(top pic to the right) It's not summer in Japan without hearing the semi (cicada) "singing" day & night. Personally, they just annoy the hell out of me. Can't hear myself think sometimes hahaha.

(bottom pic to the left) I don't know what kind of spider this is, but you're able to see all sorts of spiders that have made the inbetweens of the torii their homes. I hate bugs and are terrified of them but despite the size and scariness of the spiders, they don't bother you.
Quick coordinate shot! (a poor shot on outfit detail, but oh well)
gray kimono cardigan: Charlotte Russe
black ribbon printed skirt (but used as tubetop): Forever 21
denim shorts: Charlotte Russe
black pointed flats: Payless
wig: given to me by a friend


August 23, 2011

Coordinate Post 8/22

necklace: given to me by a friend
bracelets: Charlotte Russe
tiger face leotard: Forever 21
wig: given to me by a friend

long trousers: Retro Girl
shoes: Urban Outfitters
bag: given to me by a friend

Back when I used to work at Charlotte Russe, I always made it a point to layer accessories upon accessories and since coming to Japan, haven't had much time to dress as nice as I did in Hawaii. I would have thought it would have been the opposite but I think because I walk and ride my bike everywhere I don't have the motivation to dress that nice or risk my skirt flying up while riding my bike. But I wanted to channel a bit of how I used to dress back at home through the layers of bracelets I'm wearing (^___^).

I've also been wearing the 2 wigs I have a lot recently. I really don't like my hair at this point and in attempts to resist cutting it (as always) I've been putting my wigs to good use ;) I'm thinking of getting a short one next! 

August 22, 2011

同志社大学留学 ✿ Doshisha University Farewell Party

This was on August 06, 2011 but I finally found time to blog about it.
This was held for all the study abroad students that were nearing the end of their year term. We held a goodbye party for the study abroad students (newcomers and of course the ones that were leaving), our senseis and anyone else who wanted to attend. It was at Doshisha's Kambaikan campus' cafe. A bit small to hold 90+ people but we pulled it off.

There were even performances that were held by a couple of my friends and even a performance by me!

On to pictures~

All you can eat, all you can drink!

Speeches made by our senseis and two of our friends

Me and my friend from France, Celia. We both did a performance! (vid at the bottom)

The performances that were held!

Me and Celia's performance!
Danced to Girl's Generation - Gee and
Ayaman Japan's - poipoipoi (changed the lyrics a bit though).

The video ↗↗ Keep in mind that I only got a chance to learn the dance THE NIGHT BEFORE! I was really nervous but it was fun and I'm glad everyone got into it :)

Video Contents:
✿ Steven's speech
✿ Matsumoto sensei's speech
✿ Marco's spanish guitar
✿ Jeff, Steven & Hanvit's song performance
✿ Jamie's enka performance
✿ Celia & Juvy's 'gee' dance and rilakkuma poipoipoi dance

I'm glad this party was a success. Unfortunately a lot of the friends that I've made since coming here have left already. I'm sad but also excited to see fresh new faces! I'm lucky to have made friends from different parts of the world. Till we meet again!

August 18, 2011

Today's Coordinate 8/17

Simple outfit. Just went to the movies with a friend! Girls get discounts every Wednesday at the movies ;) I also decided to wear my wig <3
Cardigan: Uniqlo
heart print tunic: Charlotte Russe
leggings: 3coins
yellow wedges: (forgot the store name, somewhere in kyoto)
purse: given to me by a friend

Unfortunately since it's SUPER humid & hot here in Kyoto, I've broken out with rashes in various places on my body. One of those places happen to be around my mouth :( so for now, I wear a mask. It's slowly but surely healing! It's a good thing wearing a mask is not out of the ordinary here :)

For each girl it's 1000yen

Waiting with our tickets!

Purikura after the movie~

August 16, 2011

Making a quick post from my phone!

Trying out these overnight hair curlers I got at the 100 yen store! I feel like Chun-Li lol.

What I had for lunch today! It's time to change my diet! I couldn't resist buying the bread roll though. It was so delicious and freshly baked too!!

Also from the 100yen store! First time trying out nail stickers. I'll post a more detailed review on them later. I think I'm going to get addicted to these nail stickers!

August 13, 2011


Ultra Light Texture
about ¥1680

Quite recently, a lot of hair dyes in Japan are turning into foam dyes to make it easier and less messy to dye your hair. I guess the foam craze caught on with makeup as well. Maybelline came out with a BB mousse recently and it's been getting a lot of attention. BB (blemish balm) creams are generally "healthier" to use for your skin rather than regular liquid foundations that can clog your pores. 

Why I bought it:
Aside from seeing this product being advertised everywhere with a number one ranking, possibly being a makeup revolution and it being sold out at every drug store I go to, I decided to buy it because the liquid foundation I was using at the time wasn't agreeing with my skin. I've used BB cream before and my skin seems to do better with it. So seeing all the pros that this new BB cream had to offer, I had to try it. The weather in Japan (especially in Kyoto) is very intense and right now we're in the middle of summer so I wanted a foundation that will at least let my skin breathe a little.

The product:
I was really surprised when I first tried it. It was definitely something new! The can's nozzle was basically like a mousse-can nozzle. Don't let the moussy texture fool you, it looks very light and airy but a little bit of it goes a long way. At the drugstore I only saw one tone (Ultra Light Texture). I don't consider myself light skinned but this BB cream eventually blends well into your skin tone. 

The verdict:
The way it comes out light and airy is exactly the way it feels on your skin. It feels really natural and so far I've sweated in it, wiped my face, worn it for hours and my skin faired pretty well with it! It doesn't smudge onto clothes either which is a major plus. The only con (for now) is that I think I still have to master the amount of mousse I need for perfect coverage but I know I'll be repurchasing this product again! 


August 05, 2011

natsuyasumi 夏休み

I'm finally done with finals! It's officially the start of my summer vacation here in Japan!
Last day of finals was on Wednesday (8/3). To celebrate as a class we decided to have dinner with an all-you-can-eat (tabehoudai)「食べ放題」at a restaurant called "Sweets Ninja". It was my second time eating there. Prices are actually really reasonable considering that all-you-can-eat restaurants are around the 2000yen price range. We only payed 1400yen per person.

It was fun! Everyone from my class went but sadly only 2 out of the 5 teachers we have went. But I hope to go out with all my teachers at least while I'm here! They're all friendly and cool to hang out with.

Class picture! 
Bottom (L to R): Lauren (アメリカ人 american She's from Pittsburgh!), Yonezawa (先生 sensei Our Monday teacher. She was our essay teacher.), Matsumoto (先生 sensei Our Tuesday teacher. He was our conversations teacher.), Shin (中国人 chinese), Chun (台湾人 taiwanese), Bunkei (台湾人 taiwanese), Kan (韓国人 korean)

Top (L to R): Moh (台湾人 taiwanese), Chien (台湾人 taiwanese), Caleb (ニュージランド New Zealand), me! (I'm from America but I'm considered ハワイ人 Hawaiian)

Picture with my two sensei's!
Matsumoto sensei really REALLY reminds me of the dad from Totoro!
What do you think?!

On our way back home, me and 3 other classmates passed an arcade and decided to take purikura! Wish our whole class did but we already parted ways to go home.

Now that school is over with for now, I hope to blog more!!! I really want to document my stay here as much as possible. I have a feeling that won't get started probably till next week. There are a lot of farewell parties for the students that have already been here for a year. I have one tomorrow in which I'll be doing a short dance with another friend. We're going to be dancing to Girl's Generation - Gee in our kigurumis! I only learned this dance since last night but so far, a small preview!

Don't mind my room! Lots of boxes because I'm letting a friend stay with me for a bit. <--- link to the Girls Generation MV

Okay! Off to practice some more~