Grooming Kit Essentials for Women

May 29th, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

Make sure that you always look your best with these grooming kit essentials that you should carry in your bag wherever you are.

1. Nail Essentials
Don’t forget to bring a small kit that contains all the necessary items for emergency manicure and pedicure. You can buy a set that comes with tiny pouch at health and beauty shops which includes the following items: compact nail clippers and nail nipper for cutting nails, nail file to smoothen and file nails, tweezers for pulling out hair and nail splinters, cuticle scissors or cuticle nipper, and nail cleaner.

2. Epilator
When you don’t have time to get waxed or sugared, and shaving isn’t an option for you, you should always take an epilator if you travel a lot. It’s a convenient item for removing hair from any part of the body, including the face, bikini area, and armpits.

3. Toiletries
Always bring small packs of toiletries wherever you go because you never know when you need them. You can purchase compact versions at shops that include the following essentials: toothbrush and toothpaste, floss, shampoo and conditioner, bar of soap or shower gel, deodorant, washcloth, cotton pads, Q-tips, facial cleanser, tissue or moist towelettes, and sanitary pads.

4. Skin and Hair Products
Besides a pack of essential toiletries, you should always take essential skin and hair products and items to always look your best no matter where you go. Don’t forget to pack the following before you go out: comb or brush, compact mirror, lotion, facial moisturizer, sunscreen, lip balm, hand cream, gel or leave-in conditioner, oil spray, body spray or perfume, and hair clips or hair tie.

5. Makeup Kit
Lastly, you should always take a compact makeup kit that contains all the essentials for retouching your makeup. You never know when you need to spend more hours at work or when you get invited to dinner after spending the whole day at the office. Every woman should bring the following makeup essentials in her bag: foundation, pressed powder, concealer, eyeshadow, eyeliner, eyebrow pencil, mascara, eyelash curler, lip gloss, lipstick, and blush or bronzer. You should also take a makeup remover, facial wash and moisturizer, eye gel, and exfoliator in case you need to remove your makeup.

You don’t need to lug around a large bag to pack all of these. You can find small and compact grooming kits or travel kits that will fit easily in your bag that includes most of these grooming essentials.

12 Fantasy Novels for Children

May 29th, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

Are you looking for books to introduce your child to the fantasy genre? These are the best titles for children aged 12 years and below.

1. Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
The book introduces the character Peter Pan, a naughty young boy who doesn’t want to grow up and spends most of his time in Neverland with friends and other supernatural creatures.

2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
The first book in the series introduces a young wizard who didn’t know he was famous for beating a dark wizard until he was invited to attend a wizarding school.

3. The Hobbit, or There and Back Again by J.R.R. Tolkien
Before introducing your child to The Lord of the Rings series, you should let him/her read this first because the story is a lot easier to follow. It tells of the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf, and thirteen dwarves.

4. A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin
The novel introduces the young wizard Ged who gets into trouble after a conflict in the wizarding school because of a spell that backfired.

5. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
The novel will take your child into the cold land of Narnia, a kingdom that is full of mythical creatures and is ruled by a White Witch.

6. The Sword in the Stone by T.H. White
Part of the series of books about King Arthur, this novel covers the childhood years of the mythical king when he was taught by Merlyn in the art of becoming a prince and in the use of magic.

7. Northern Lights or The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
The first book of the series introduces the parallel universe where Lyra Belacqua journeys in search of a missing friend and an uncle, whose experiments with an unknown substance resulted in a strange accident.

8. Un Lun Dun by China Mieville
Zanna and Deeba are suspecting that some strange mystery has been affecting them, especially after they found a way into UnLondon, a mirror version of London.

9. The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander
Part of a series of novels and short stories in The Chronicles of Prydain, it introduces one of fantasy’s most iconic characters named Taran, a pig keeper who wants to be a hero.

10. Lord Brocktree by Brian Jacques
This is the first book of the Redwall series, which chronicles the history of Redwall and its famous anthropomorphic figures.

11. The Knight of the Swords by Michael Moorcock
The first book in the Corum series, it begins with an introduction to of the gods that destroyed old races and who were destroyed themselves because of their desire to rewrite history. It was a time when heroes such as Prince Corum would thrive.

12. The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan
It is the first novel in the Ranger’s Apprentice series that spans a total of 12 books, perfect for youngsters looking for a longer fantasy series.

7 Must-Try Dishes in SG if You Love Spicy Food

April 27th, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

The Singaporean palate is made just for this type of flavor as far as the locals are concerned. You aren’t a true local if you can’t stand this throbbing tang, and for tourists this is some sort of rite of passage when you come visit the place.

This is one flavor we can’t stand but still can’t resist to indulge in. Panting like we just ran a mile with beads of sweat trickling on our backs, we can’t seem to say no to this treat which we always have the hots for.

1. Pan Mee
This dish originating from Kuala Lumpur is spiced up with dry chili flakes that’s slow-roasted to achieve just the right flavor. It’s optional though, so you have to figure out whether or not to have flakes on your serving. The dish typically has a mix of crisped ikan bilis, meatballs, fried scallion and minced meat.

2. Tom Yum Soup
Whoever said that spice always comes in the color red is so wrong in all the right ways. Singaporean food proves that looks can be very deceiving, even costing you the surprise of ingesting a very spicy dish. The Tom Yum soup is light in color, speculated to have originated from Thailand. It is often served simmering hot, to preserve its flavor that’s both sour and spicy at the same time.

3. Laksa
Literally meaning “spicy sand” in Chinese, this dish is known to have originated from the Pernakan culture. It has dried prawns that’s grounded to achieve that granular texture smoothened by its coconut-based soup. Its red tint gives your forewarning about what to expect when you prepare to take a bite.

4. Sate Ayam
Known to have originated from Indonesia, this is a dish coated with sweet soy sauce with a tinge of spicy hot peanut sauce. The main star of the dish is typically charcoal-grilled and twigged-through, so it’s handy and can be enjoyed even while walking around or sitting at table.

5. Mee Goreng
There are more variants of this dish but since we’re on our spicy list, we’ll stick with the Indian version which will leave you sweating profusely. Thanks to the chili sauce, ketchup and green chili, you’ll sweat bullets while munching on this one. It has fried noodles with egg and seafood, with the right blend of sweet, salty and spicy.

6. Indian Curry
Indians have this knack for spice and it seemingly has influenced Singapore as well. There are various versions of this tangy dish, and it depends on your mood or your tolerance to spiciness. The Machichi Curry is for those looking to break a sweat while dining and the Makhani Chicken Tikka is for those craving for a more creamy taste.

7. Roti Prata
Let’s not mistake this seemingly innocent dish, as its dip is always sets our palates ablaze. With different choices like fish, curry or chicken gravy, this dish totally has that kick we all want in our food.

5 Easy Ways to Keep Your Body Hydrated

April 27th, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

In this day and age where almost everything is done in an instant, it’s always hard to keep up even with the most basic things. Sleep is a luxury, and eating is almost a second priority. With schedules that are too tight for their own good, we have to maintain a healthy routine along with it. Or else, our unhealthy lifestyle will eventually take its toll on our bodies and the price to pay isn’t something we can afford.

Here are some ways for us to stay hydrated even in the busiest of schedules:

1. Drink up
Look here, since this bit of information is just so common we somehow take it for granted. Drink up, and not just any beverage we first take a hold of in the fridge. Water. Drink up plenty and plenty of water. Not only is it the most important nutrient among all the others, it also serves as solvent for essential bodily reactions.

In addition, it also helps maintain good circulation and maintain body temperature. So before you reach for that next can of soda, keep in mind how many glasses of water you’ve had for the day. There’s no harm in adding an extra glass or two.

2. Avoid alcohol
If you’re planning to hit the gym or to just have that jog you’ve been meaning to do for quite some time now, avoid alcohol the day before. Avoid exercising with a hangover as this is both dangerous and could just lead to even more dehydration.

3. Eat more fruits and vegetables
This hits a memory, doesn’t it? Growing up, we’ve all been reminded to finish our vegetables at meal time, and to eat a fruit or two after. Guess our stubbornness wasn’t worth it. It has been proven that fruits and vegetables contain varying levels of water and of course, the important nutrients such as potassium among others. Eat at least five cups each day, and you’re good to go.

4. Monitor fluid loss
This can be done by checking the color of your urine. Before hitting the flush, check whether you’ve been hydrated that day or not. You could still catch up on your eight glasses as long as you haven’t called it a day yet. If well-hydrated, your urine should be pale yellow, not dark. Also, it shouldn’t be too smelly or cloudy.

5. Replace fluid or sodium losses
This can be done through eating watery foods that contain just the right amount of salt coupled with potassium. Soup and vegetable juices can do the trick.

Cliché as it sounds but health is wealth. No one can afford the price to pay once health deteriorates and decides it’s had enough. So before anything unfortunate happens, keep those hydrates where they’re supposed to be.

Smart Consumer Tips in Buying Fresh Produce

March 22nd, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

Sometimes, the mere appearance of produce can trick us into buying them without even ensuring their freshness. It is a sad surprise to cut into your freshly-brought fruit only to find out that it’s brown, unripe, or bruised. To prevent this from happening (especially because produce generally do not have a return policy), you need to familiarize yourself with what to look for.

With some fruits, you can already determine their ripeness merely based on color, while others require a touch or a light squeeze. Being a smart consumer doesn’t happen overnight. There are lots of tips you should know. Here are some of them:

1. When buying pineapples, look for one which has a golden color. Also, ensure that the fruit has a sweet scent. If it does not give off any scent at all, it is likely still unripe. If it smells a little vinegary, chances are it’s overripe.

2. Ripe eggplants are never soft. In buying eggplants, look for ones that are elastic and tight when you put pressure on the fruit by giving it a light squeeze. (Yes, technically, eggplants are fruits.) Its skin must also be dark in color and should have no evident blemishes or scars.

3. Fresh watermelon sounds hollow and often feels heavy. If a watermelon is heavy, it indicates the fruit is full of water hence it is likely ripe. Tap on the watermelon lightly and ensure it sounds hollow – as the sound it produces is another indicator of ripeness. Don’t forget to check with the underside of a watermelon as well: a light or yellow spot on the bottom indicates that the watermelon is ready to eat.

4. In searching for ripe tomatoes, conduct a touch test. Fresh tomatoes are not usually indicated by its color alone. The best way to ensure its ripeness is to test it by touching, and if it slightly yields to your touch, it is guaranteed that the tomato is at its optimal ripeness. Any less would mean it would take a couple of days more for the tomato to ripen.

5. Strawberries taste as good as they smell. This comes in handy when you are browsing through strawberries at the fruit section in the grocery. You can determine ripe strawberries through its scent, as it smells exactly as you want it to taste. If the fruit is odorless, it probably doesn’t taste much. Strawberries are also ideally bright red in color and is free of any blemishes.

Wild Asian Delicacies for Your Next Food Trip

March 22nd, 2018 by Editor | Permalink

There is no denying how Asian cuisine is remarkably rich. From different kinds of dim sum, Korean barbeque, sushi, and spiced curry – each meal is truly a gastronomic delight. The splendor doesn’t stop there though. As there is a wide variety in the choices of dishes, there are also some wild, bizarre Asian food delicacies which prove to be a challenge even among the brave of heart.

Balut – This delicacy is native to the Philippines. It is quite like your ordinary hard-boiled eggs, save for the fact that the eggs are half-fertilized. So instead of finding yellow yolk, you will instead find a partially developed duck/chicken embryo. It is believed to be an aphrodisiac and is often eaten as a side snack to accompany a cold beer.

Drunken shrimp – Love shrimp? Then this Chinese dish is a must-try. Alive pieces of shrimp are drunk, in a sense that they are marinated in a pool of strong liquor. The presence of alcohol effectively slows down the shrimp’s movements. The trick to eating this dish is to remove the shrimp’s head first before you shove its wriggling body in your mouth.

White ant eggs – Considered as another wild Asian delicacy, this dish is common among streets and hawker stands in Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia. It is often served in the form of a soup – where it is a mix of baby ants, partial embryos, and their eggs. When the eggs pop in the mouth, it is said to release a sharp, sour taste.

Fish sperm (Shirako) – Yes, you read that right. This dish, commonly called in Japan as Shirako, is made of a fish’s male genitalia which still contains the fluids. It is served across the country, popularly in sushi bars and pubs. It is a flavorful dish which is considered close to the heart of the locals.

Tuna eyes – This local Japanese delicacy consists entirely of tuna eyes, which can be either served raw or steamed. If your palate is looking for flavor – you can also flavor the dish with soy sauce or a bit of garlic.

Fried tarantula – This Cambodian delicacy is not for the faint of heart. Eating tarantulas began during a long period of food shortage under the Khmer Rouge. Fried tarantulas are noted to be crispy, with white meat which apparently tastes like that of chicken or cod meat.

Raw horse meat – Raw horse meat, or Basashi, is horsemeat served raw (like sashimi slices). It often comes with vegetables or rice on the side. For a fuller burst of flavors, others even eat it with ranch dressing.