Beauty · review · Writing Samples

Dry Brushing : My Own Experience

Dry Brushing

It does not need much explanation, dry brushing is simply brushing your skin with a brush when it is dry. This practice traces its origins back to Indian Ayurveda, where people use it as a lymphatic drainage option. Though today people seem to find more benefits to keep this ancient knowledge alive.

How To Do It?

First, invest in a good quality brush. Focus on the bristles, the handles and everything in between..

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My cheap crappy brush

I got this from a pharmacy, because it has massage beads as well as the bristles. In my opinion, the bristles are quite sharp, not as good as Sukin one that I have. Unfortunately Sukin brush does not have the beads, so I use this one at the gym after my workout.

You can buy one from Amazon here.

Then, before your bath/ shower every day, gently brush from feet towards the heart; and when you do the hands, you brush them towards your chest. I do mine in a circular motion, but still swirling towards the trunk, When doing my stomach I would do a few more circles, as I really want my stubborn stomach fat to go away.

What Does Dry Brushing Do?

Aside from improving your lymphatic drainage, dry brushing is lauded to have other benefits. but the reasons why I started doing is not trying to improve the system. My lymph nodes are fine, because I am constantly moving around with a baby, and daily gym work.

The main reasons for me were exfoliating and getting rid of dirt from the pores, and hopefully scrub off enough layers of skin to fade some scars. Of course I could do wet brushing, which is brushing my skin under the shower or in the bath. But it’s Australia and it’s dry as a nun’s nasty here (yeah it’s a legit Aussie slang) so dry brushing saves water. After gym, while I am still hot and my pores are still open, that’s when I do mine.

Some would tell you that it is good to get rid of cellulite, the dimply appearance normally around the bums and thighs. Cellulite is a problem when you are sedentary and have a poor blood circulation, because the connective tissues between fat cells breakdown, then you will have that dimply look. It ain’t pretty, and you can’t treat it with diet and exercise.

Does it Work?

Not sure about the lymphatic drainage part, but I assume so because any form of movement will be good. Our lymph system has no pump, so it relies largely on muscle movement and external forces to push it to the liver. Hence all lymphatic massage is towards the liver/ body. Dry brushing is the same, but if you want to break up some extra fat stores, circular motion helps. No one said you cannot do it both ways, it does take time.

I will say that the pore cleaning definitely is true, I have seen icky stuff coming out of my skin. This was after few days of dry brushing after gym. That is probably a good thing, because I have been neglecting my skin for a tad too long. But exfoliation wise, there is some contention in that topic.

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If dry brushing is a great way to exfoliate, then I would not be suffering from ingrown hairs. Right now they are still as annoying as ever. Plus, that scar has not really faded. It is a scar, from scraping myself somewhere one day. This picture is taken three weeks after my almost daily routine of dry brushing. Cellulite wise, it did somewhat make my thighs smoother, though I cannot see my bum very well…

So far there is no improvement, or nothing that makes you think it is worth the effort for me. Having said that, a lot of people do have good results. It might be just me, though I am slightly disappointed. Overall, I think it is a good habit to have, it is just a few minutes a day.

Dry Brushing vs Body Scrub: which one is better?

Priori Advanced AHA Invigorating Face & Body Scrub

For me, dry brushing takes the cake. Main reason is because the brush would last you a lot longer than a body scrub. Another advantage is the brush is made usually from boar’s bristles, where as body scrubs come in all shape and formulation, a nightmare if you have sensitive skin. If you use it properly, and clean it often, I think you can use if indefinitely, at least more than six months right?

This AHA is a chemical body scrub, it has lactic acid that acts as exfoliate. For physical exfoliate, there is Body Shop’s sugar scrub, or Sukin’s purifying scrub. Okay maybe these scrubs have the extra moisturizing effect the brushes do not have *yet*…

The only problem with dry brushing is winter, it gets terribly cold and getting naked for five minutes can be a little hard. I do it at the gym, after a workout so my body remains a little warm while I quickly do a scrub. While that works for me, I know it is not for everyone. However, wet brushing will not give you that pore and skin cleansing benefits due to reduced friction. You will still get the cellulite and lymphatic advantage, that counts for something at least.

Of course, if you are not going for the brush and prefer scrubs, you can do a little massage as you go around your body. Lymphatic massage is a good companion to your body scrub routine, there are videos you can watch online. Whichever way you pick, it is the habit that promotes good health, because lymphatic system is tied closely to our health.

 

Book · thoughts · Writing Samples

Beautiful People : August Edition

Image From the Hosts

Beautiful People : For Writers and Dreamers

The answers for these questions are for one of my main characters: Christopher. He is a detective and I need to flesh him out a little more. Aside from the six pack and a good tan, I think he has to be a lot more than just eye- candy to be a detective… so without further ado…

I have done Beautiful People blog hop before, you can read it here (March. And another here. Then I got lazy, with travelling and kids.

What are they addicted to/can’t live without?

He is addicted to prescription medication, at this rate I think it should be a sleeping pill rather than a painkiller. I haven’t decided yet, but he cannot live without *hmmm* going to the gym.

Name 3 positive and 3 negative qualities about your character.

3 Positives : courageous, determined, careful
3 negatives: racist, chauvinistic, messy

Are they holding onto something they should get rid of?

A grudge, definitely emotional baggage…

If 10 is completely organized and 1 is completely messy, where do they fall on the scale?

Probably a 3, bad enough that other people does his organizing for him in the office.

What most frustrates them about the world they live in?

So many Asians, quote politician Pauline Hanson (she’s a real person): Asian Invasion. That and Dominos Pizza is shrinking.

How would they dress for a night out? How would they dress for a night in?

On summers night it would be just shorts for a night IN. For a night out, a black shirt with jeans, because he can.

How many shoes do they own, and what kind?

Asics running shoes, a black dress shoe and loafers/ slippers whatever you call them.

Do they have any pets? What pet do they WISH they had?

He is not a pet person, due to the nature of his work. But he might wish he has a pet Rottweiler to watch his back.

Is there something or someone that they resent? Why and what happened?

His ex-wife who had ran off with an Asian (he never knew exactly which nationality) pilot.

What’s usually in their fridge or pantry?

Protein bars and more protein bars…

I need your help!

Suggest something that I could change in the list, and I might consider it. IF my book ever gets published I promise to put your name on the thank list =d

bloghop · thoughts

Beautiful People : March Edition

Beautiful People : March Edition almost didn’t happen

Right now I am typing this with one hand, my baby sleeping on my other hand. Last week it was the battle of crappy Internet service, with a lot of cold virus going around.

So happy that I finally get to read and answer questions for beautiful people. I really wanted to do it, because I am too lazy to think of these questions on my own. Although it seems irrelevant, these questions are what makes a character seem like a person, instead of someone you read about.

If you feel like joining , go to Paper Fury’s or Further Up and Further In .

Q&A

What’s their favourite book/movie/play/etc.?
Mina’s favorite Kdrama is Moonlight Drawn by Clouds or Love in the Moonlight. But she is also a fan of Hercule Poirot, often fantasizes as a great detective herself.
Is there anything they regret doing?
So many! Mina’s biggest regret is leaving South Korea, but there is bad memories there.
If they were sick or wounded, who would take care of them and how?
Mina is all alone in Australia. One would hope that it is her racist partner Christopher, but that’s quite slim. Maybe another friend.
Is there an object they can’t bear to part with and why?
Mina cannot bear to part with her photo album, containing all the photos of her family.
What are 5 ways to win their heart (or friendship)?
a) give her food
b) save her life
c) Chocolates never fail
d) a shoulder to cry on
e) hands that can support her world
Describe a typical outfit for them from top to bottom.
Mina wears black pants and a shirt to work. During off days, she loves to dress up in pretty dresses and a cute hairstyle.
What’s their favorite type of weather?
Winter, cold
What’s the worst fight they’ve ever been in?
A fight with her dad about inheriting the family business, father threatened to disown her. It didn’t went through as the family had met with an accident shortly after the fight.
What names or nicknames have they been called throughout their life?
Nana was her nickname by her younger siblings
What makes their heart feel alive?
A sparring exercise

bloghop · thoughts

Beautiful People #22 – Blog Hop

Beautiful People Blog Hop

Beautiful People #22

The Blog hop is hosted by Paper Fury and Further Up and Further In. The Beautiful People #22 is couple’s edition, because it’s Valentine’s month baby! Here are their 10 painful questions about your characters, if you do not have a couple, make one up.

I am writing a crime thriller at the moment, and my couple are the detectives in the book. So this hop gives me perfect opportunity to decide on their fate.

Playing Ten Questions

How and why did they meet?
Mina and Christopher are detectives, and partners. Mina is the junior one, and Christopher has more experience by five years.

What were their first impressions of each other?
Mina does not like Christopher’s racist tendency. Christopher does not like his Korean descent partner.
How would they prove their love for each other?
Christopher protected Mina when they are attacked by people, Mina reciprocated by preventing him from getting fired for racism . Actually I haven’t thought that far

What would be an ideal date?
An ideal date will be not getting shot at, puked on or harassed. Basically, staying home in bed.
Is there something they emphatically disagree on?
Migrants are good for the country, Mina. Christopher thinks Australia is an island for a reason (a continent but you get the drift).
List 5 “food quirks” they know about each other. (Ex: how they take their coffee, if they’re allergic to something, etc….and feel free to mention other non-food quirks!)
Mina eats everything with Kimchi, except popcorn and ice cream
Christopher survives on corndogs and dim sims while solving cases
Both drinks coffee black with loads of sugar
Christopher tried Kimchi once (wanting to impress Mina) but hates it
Mina thinks Kangaroo and kimchi are marriage made in heaven.

What’s one thing they know about each other that no one else does?
They both like Ed Sheeran
What’s one thing that they keep a secret from each other?
Christopher is afraid to love again, Mina is daugther of the Korean mafia

How would their lives be different without each other?
For one, Christopher will never eat things like Kimchi. Mina might never learn how to compartmentalize emotions at work
Where do they each see this relationship going?
If they are lucky, it will go somewhere. At the moment, not getting shot at in the relationship seems to be a bonus

A Stupid Meme


I for one, am a supporter of Paulo Coelho’s theory, where you can have more than one soulmate. It is opposite of the Greek myth that Zeus smote people into halves, so that they spend their life time looking for the other half. I think is romantic, but life does not fit together like a puzzle.

As for Valentines day, I will be getting nothing as usual. Plus we usually celebrate post valentine’s, where heart shape things go cheap. It is not that my love for my family/ husband is cheap, but commercialism does not rule my household. No thanks to bean counting hubby.

If you ask what Mina and Christopher are doing for Valentine’s Day, they will answer you that they will listen to Ed Sheeran in the stake out car, while trying to find out who is the killer. Christopher might buy her a flower or two, you can be sure that it will be a fake plastic rose. But Mina will still love it, because she knows he never does shit like Valentine’s.

Maybe… just maybe, she will suspect that someone killed the real Christopher and gave her a fake one.

bloghop · thoughts

Beautiful Books Link Up 2017

The Beautiful Books 2017

Hosted by Paper Fury

I am joining the Beautiful Books 2017! I was not sure if I could do it, because I have not written a lot since Princess Brat was born. Actually, that was just an excuse, she was born August, and I had a lot of time. But didn’t write much because I was procrastinating a lot.

2017 is a new year, and my one word resolution was to work. Here I am, working at something.

The Glorious Questions

What were your writing achievements last year?
Getting my clinical articles published in the workplace’s website. I got 2 out of 4 in, with all that competition, I am really proud. 

What’s on your writerly “to-do list” for 2017?
I want to write as many outlines as possible, hopefully Nano 2017 will be easier being a plotter.

Tell us about your top-priority writing projects for this year!
That writing competition the Masterclass is having \{^0^)/

How do you hope to improve as a writer? Where do you see yourself at the end of 2017?
I hope to be good enough for publishers to want me. Although if I can make money off writing by end of 2017 I am happy. By making money I mean paying taxes with money I earned.

Describe your general editing process.
Never made it that far dude!

On a scale of 1-10, how do you think this draft turned out?
Fallen of scale, it was in shambles!

What aspect of your draft needs the most work?
A proper story, like a story that moves forward.

What do you like the most about your draft?
I wrote it. It is my greatest achievement

What are your plans for this novel once you finish editing? More edits? Finding beta readers? Querying? Self-publishing? Hiding it in a dark hole forever?
I am going to read it first. Before anything, I am going to read what crap I wrote. 

What’s your top piece of advice for those just finished writing a first draft?
Read your drafts. I chucked many away because i realized that I hate reading it as a reader, but loved writing it as a writer. Reality sucks.

End of Q&A

There you have it! Answers to the wonderful, depressing questions the host had for me. I had just drank a glass of wine (actually I finished it. the bottle)    and I still feel down. I need cake,  and I highly recommend that one minute cake mug mix from White Wings, they are delicious!

And special thanks you Cait @ Paper Fury for this painful reality check.