Aug Empties + Week 35/36 Pregnancy Update
Wow, it’s time for another Empties post. I’m on a roll. I used to do this type of post whenever I accumulated enough interesting products, but being home and not travelling, has imbued me with a verve to finish up products that are lingering and cluttering up space.
From left to right:
La Visui Shampoo was a product that made it to my Top 10 Japanese Beauty Products in 2012 list and I still think it’s a great non-silicone shampoo. It smells like you’ve infused your hair with expensive perfume without any of the nasties. The only downside is that it’s not available in my neighbourhood so I have to make a trek to Loft to stock up.
T/Gel Shampoo is a staple in my haircare routine. Read the in-depth review here.
The Body Shop Earth Lovers Fig & Rosemary Shower Gel makes an occasional appearance in my shower as it’s an old fave. In fact I tend to revisit the whole range whenever I see a sale on at TBS. I can’t resist anything with fig in it, plus the soap-free and additive-free formula sits well with my finicky skin.
Angeliebe Organic Certified Massage Cream For Pre Mama was an impulse buy when I was at the end of my first trimester and I made my first large purchase of maternity clothes at said store. They put this product at the cashier where I was waiting my turn and of course “organic” jumped out at me. There was shea butter and the promise of a lovely citrus scent so I bought it on the spot after rubbing some on my hand.
It turned out the skin on my belly did not like it after two weeks’ of daily application. I got a terrible rash between my boobs and the bump and it took ages for it to go away. It also made my tummy itch later in the day if I put it on in the morning. This was when I switched exclusively to stretch mark oil and used the rest of this big bottle on my limbs. Good riddance.
Kate Nail Color Remover is a cheap nail polish remover that is below 500JPY that I keep repurchasing. It removes glitter nail polish well but it can be quite harsh on the cuticles – though a bit of hand cream will fix that right up.
philosophy Rainbow Sherbet Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath was a light fruity delight in my shower and I was sorry to see it go. It was part of a summer trio that also had Orange Creamsicle and Peachy Cream Milkshake. Yum.
Hada Labo UV Creamy Gel was a lifesaver in the thick humidity of August. I’m a big fan of physical sunscreens but even I couldn’t handle an ounce of stickiness in the crazy heat. This is a watery chemical sunscreen formula has SPF50 PA+++ which I lathered all over my limbs, neck, and chest whenever I went out. I didn’t feel I had anything on my skin and I still got sun protection. This small tube didn’t last long at all.
Weleda Pomegranate Hand Cream smelled lovely but was meh as a hand cream. I just don’t like the greasiness that hangs over your hands long after you apply this. When I had 30% left of the stuff, I just used it on my legs. I much prefer Jurlique.
Mutenka Cow Brand Cleansing Milk gets rid of makeup really well, except for waterproof mascara. I still prefer cleansing oils which are better at removing waterproof mascara but I think there are some folks out there who just prefer a gentle but effective cream cleanser, and if you are one of them, this one would be right up your alley.
Mutenka Cow Brand Facial Foam Wash is something I like to use in summer because it has that stripping sensation after you wash your face. I know that is not the best for any type of skin but I really do love the squeaky clean effect it has after a long hot day. I stay away from this type of cleanser once the cold weather hits. It’s so affordable as well at 600-700JPY per tube. “Mutenka” in Japanese, by the way, means to be without additives so this is a good brand for those with sensitive skin. There is a foaming facial wash version for dry skin which comes in a pump bottle form and dispenses thick foam – I like this one as well.
Covermark Treatment Cleansing Milk was a deluxe sample in one of the Glossy Boxes I subscribed to last year. This was perfect for when I wanted to remove makeup before jumping into the pool. Covermark is rather pricey and there are so many cheap but good makeup removers at the Japanese drugstore that I doubt I would go high-end and get this one in full-size. I must say though I got interested in cream cleansers after following A Model Recommends but I think the hassle of needing an eyemakeup remover is an extra step that will always sort of bug me.
Astalift Cream was a solid night moisturizer in summer to keep air-conditioning dryness from depleting my skin of moisture. It has a pleasant subtle scent but I’m on an experimental binge with night creams right now so I don’t think I would return to this one soon at all. In-depth review here.
Yes To Blueberries Age Refresh Eye Firming Treatment was surprisingly light for an anti-aging product. I used it daily through the summer till it was no more. I generally like the Yes To brand for its natural offerings and would probably try its other skincare lines if they were available in Japan.
Sofina Beaute Whitening Day Protector (Moisturizing) SPF50 PA+++ was also a summer staple for my face. It was lightweight and had heavy sun protection. The humidity was so bad that I couldn’t even use my HG Diorsnow sunscreen so this was a great alternative to keeping my makeup from sliding off my face!
Maybelline Baby Lips SPF20 Lip Balm Pink Punch was a real disappointment and so it’s a discard. I like most of the Baby Lips range but somehow this one just didn’t cut it for me. It doesn’t roll over the lips smoothly and it looks patchy which doesn’t make it a good base for layering lipstick. I’ve been having little patience for products that don’t work and have chucked out quite a bit when I was spring cleaning. I forgot to save them for this post – that shows how single-minded and “on a mission” I was! LOL!
Whoo…that’s a wrap for August and my Sept empties bag is being slowly filled up. Since my due date is in Oct, I don’t know if I would continue blogging then but I’m still collecting my empties just in case.
So, Week 35 saw me in Atami for the weekend and I surprised myself how easy it was to spend a weekend away from home even though I felt like I had a huge watermelon up my belly. I didn’t think I could get any bigger but I did. This baby is putting on fat like no tomorrow. I am beginning to feel the challenge of eating three square meals because I can’t seem to consume as much in one sitting as before. E.g. I could nom on three tacos for dinner, but lately, I feel like I am done at two and the third just seems like a chore and I feel terribly uncomfortable for hours after if I stuffed myself.
Anyway, that’s me with with the husband and two maikos after a 30-minute performance of old Japanese songs that dated back to the Edo period. Atami is hailed as an onsen town and such towns usually offer some kind of traditional entertainment for tourists. It was an interesting, albeit touristy, experience and I would recommend going for one just once if you are in Japan.
We also took a pottery class where I made a small ramen bowl and the hubs moulded a sake bowl for himself. It was a fun two hours of learning pottery basics, even though I’d never excelled in art classes in school. The teacher saved my bowl from several accidents, and really, it was thanks to him that I’m going to get a decent personalized ramen bowl shipped to me in October.
Back to preggo stuff: I’m officially at Week 36 now. I’ve been asked a lot if I get back pains now that I am so far along but surprisingly I’ve been spared of this common affliction (yet). Perhaps it has to do with going to a chiropractor regularly, once every fortnight, and I never had a history of back pain to begin with. I have had more than an episode of two of feeling stuffed from eating but I’ve had no heart burn this last trimester (I did in the first trimester though). I’ve been sleeping alright – I wake up maybe once or twice at night to go to the bathroom but I just sleep in a bit more to make up for it, so I don’t feel tired when I am up.
Walking is a challenge and I have to mentally brace myself to continue for 60-90 minutes because I feel like I need the bathroom but actually I don’t. The pressure of the baby on my bladder is enormously uncomfortable and lying down on my side is the only way not to feel like I need to go.
Food cravings are at a minimum as well – I eat pretty much everything these days without insane specific hankerings. However, I am making a mental note of the restaurants I’d like to visit in the next few weeks before I give birth.
Emotions-wise, I’m mostly happy and ensconced in a sweet bubble full of baby things and preggo talk with new friends but I do get flashes of fear and dread of the impending pain on D-Day (in other words, Delivery Day).
I just bought two packs of maternity sanitary pads when I did more research on why regular sanitary pads wouldn’t do in the immediate aftermath of delivery – apparently, it’s like Niagra Falls down there and you also need accompanying granny panties to hold these massive cushiony pads in place. Sigh, there is no escaping the mumsy, dagginess of being a mother, I suppose.
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