A personal blog

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Travel Checklist for the Tech Savvy

I have a penchant for smart tech gadgets and portability and efficiency are probably my two prime criteria. Portability because I dislike carrying bulk and efficiency well because there’s always a better way to do things, right?

On any given flight, I’ll typically bring my iPad, iPhone, AirPods, wired earphones (as backup only), curling iron (100-240V dual voltage, in my check-in).

That said, here are some tech paraphernalia (adapters, chords, gadgets) I make sure to pack: 

1. Fast Charging Adapter - I have this Syncwire 31W/6A 2-Port USB Plug with US UK EU Adapter in white
This thing is ridiculously handy. The base unit is a US plug and you have the option to attach UK/EU adapters. Did I mention quick charging? 31W/6A, which means full charge in minutes for iPhone and efficient charging for iPad. This goes in my carry-on as I find single usb ports on the plane somewhat limiting :)

2. Short Extension Chord - something like this Travel Power Strip, 3 USB 2 Outlets with 15 inches
Ever been at an Airbnb or hotel that just doesn’t have enough wall outlets? If so, then you need this in your life. I like that it wraps around the power strip itself which makes it easy to stow away when not in use. The only thing is, you’ll need to bring your own wall adapter to suit your destination, small inconvenience in my opinion.

3. 2-in-1 Cables 
A good general rule of thumb is to pack for as many gadgets you’ll bring so that you can charge your devices simultaneously. I am also a big fan of 2-in-1 lightning and micro USB chords, how cool are they? I have the rose gold version of the Tumi 2-in-1 Lightning & Micro USB Cable and I love how it's both stylish and functional.

4. External battery pack 
If I know I’ll be taking photos with my phone all day long then I will bring an external battery pack with me, I have the one that comes with the Away carry-on. It’s quite heavy but packs on a punch at 10000mAh which means at least 2 full charges (or more) for my iPhone X (needs 2716 mAh). There are several more compact options on the market, a few that I would consider are these ones from Tumi: Luggage Tag Powerbank or Portable Battery Bank with Lightning Swivel (sorry lightning adapter only).

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Friday, January 4, 2019

Back to Foundations

Today, let's talk about choosing the right foundation.

In a nutshell, finding the right foundation will be heavily based upon your skin type and personal preference. For people who are just making their foray into make-up, it may take some time and a series of trial-and-error's to discern what will work for you and to decide on what your preferences are. 

As you learn more about your skin type and build upon your personal preferences when choosing a foundation, here are some elements that you may want to consider: 
  1. Shade - warm vs. cool vs. neutral tones, depth of shade.
    • Pro tip: Visit an actual make up counter and have someone match you. The more you do this across different make-up brands, the more you'll get a feel for the depth of shade that suits you. Another pro tip, take home a free sample or note down the foundation shade and assess the color match throughout the day. This will allow you to evaluate the shade in different lighting conditions (outdoor lighting vs indoor).
  2. Coverage - light/medium/full, with or without SPF
    • A completely personal choice. I prefer light coverage on good skin days for sure. I always wear SPF, always! However, if I can get a foundation with SPF then I'm most likely going for it. Also light coverage foundations sometimes masquerade as BB creams or tinted moisturizers.
  3. Finish - matte, dewy, velvet, skin-like?
    • Pro tip: if your skin is on the drier side, opt for dewy formulations that would typically be labeled as "radiant" or "illuminating"
  4. Formula - liquid, powder (loose or compact)
    • I guess skin type matters here too. While people with oily skin can get away with both liquid or powder, I would advise against powder for a drier skin type. I have combination-dry (combo-dry) skin and typically opt for liquid formulations
  5. Application Method - brush or with fingers
    • Most (liquid) foundations can be applied using a variety of methods - with a traditional foundation brush, sponge, or bare fingers. A moistened sponge method will work best with water based foundations.. For tinted moisturizers or foundation serums, forget the tools and use hands for a better finish.
  6. Packaging - does it need to be travel friendly and compact? squeeze tube or traditional container with pump (for liquid)?
    • I am someone who likes to have the option to travel with my foundation so more often than not, I will opt for a squeezy tube type foundation (such as this). If you like powder foundations, try pressed powder versions (something like this)
Some of my personal favorites are below!

For reference, I am a typically a MAC shade NC 35 depending on the time of the year.
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