All Posts By

Diane Salazar

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Giveaway

Itchyfeetwonders Giveaway: December Beauty Blowout 2017

Hi guys! As you all know, every year I have a big beauty blowout giveaway; this is my way of thanking you guys for the support you’ve given me throughout the years. For this year’s blowout, I’m giving away the following items:

Set 1 – L’oreal x Maybelline (Setting Spray, Loaded Bolds Lipsticks, BB Cream, and Eyeliners)

Set 2 – Pink Sugar’s Basic Set (Blush, Eyeliner, Lippie and Eyebrow Gel)

Set 3 – Benefit’s Date Night Beauty Kit (Mini Lippie, Blush, Mascara and Highlighter)

Set 4 – Benefit’s Brow Set (Brow Pencil, Mascara and Eyebrow Primer)

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You know the drill, guys. Just follow these instructions 🙂

1. Repost this photo and tag two of your friends. Don’t forget to use #IFWChristmas.

2. Follow me on Instagram @_dianesalazar and like my page (www.facebook.com/itchyfeetwonders) 

3. Enter the raffle on my blog.

4. Do post comments on any of my blogposts and don’t forget to share any of my posts on Facebook.

5. Open to PH residents only.

6. Giveaway runs from December 4 (today) until December 27, 2017.

7. The winners will be announced on the 28th at 1:00pm 🙂

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Travel

Travel Guide: Taipei, Taiwan

I am sometimes triggered with what I see on social media. You know, millennial. I recently saw some friends’ posts about Taipei so I decided to check it out myself. I’m fond of the book-it-let’s-go-now type of travel so this trip only took two weeks of planning. Good thing, PAL still has an affordable fare.  

Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan, is one of the most visited places of Filipinos and as well as other nationalities. It is known for its busy shopping streets, artistic buildings, friendly people, and yes, it is a street-food heaven. Visitors love the lively street vibes and night markets, too.

How to get a visa:

Good news! Taiwan just granted visa-free to Filipinos. Yay! We can now visit Taiwan anytime we want 🙂

How to go:

Local airlines such as Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines have direct flights to Taipei. Travel time from Manila is approximately two hours. 

When to go:

Spring is from March-May, summer is from June-August, autumn is from September-November, and winter is from December-February. Most people go in winter because the weather is cooler.

We went there in October thinking that it’s gonna be autumn weather, but it was like summer. It was hot and humid with scattered rain showers. There was a thunderstorm on our last day. Check accuweather first before travelling to Taipei or any other countries, in general.

Where to stay:

If it’s my first time in a country, I always stay near the city center because it’s less hassle and you can easily roam around. If I choose to go back, then I’d pick another neighborhood to stay in. This is my way of familiarizing myself with the country.

There are several hostels and hotels around Taipei. We chose to stay in Westgate Hotel Taipei which is situated in the heart of Ximending and is just 50meters away from Ximen MRT Station. I always look for a hotel near the train station for easier access. The hotel has a 4-star rating on Booking and Tripadvisor. True enough, it didn’t disappoint me. We’re a party of three so we booked a double queen bedroom. It has all the amenities and a big space good for 4 persons. Plus, it came with free breakfast. Bingo! The only problem was they were really strict with check-out. They called our room twice to remind us that check-out time was 12pm sharp. Bummer.

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Transportation:

There are taxis, Uber, buses and MRT. Get an EasyCard upon arrival in the terminal’s arrival hall. The card costs NT$100 plus reload. We added NT$200 for us to get in the city. It’s similar to Hongkong’s Octopus card. You can use it on the bus, MRT and 7-11. Fares in Taipei are surprisingly cheap – as far as I can remember we just reloaded twice during our stay.

Unlike Japan’s train system, Taipei’s MRT is very easy to navigate. With the help of Google Maps or Rome2Rio app, you can get to your destination smoothly.

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What to see:

Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall

It’s one of the most important tourist spots in Taipei where you can witness the changing of guards in the morning. It was built in honor of Generallisomo Chiang Ka-shek, the former President of the Republic of China. It’s a big area composed of a Memorial Park, National Concert Hall, and National Theater. Don’t forget to stroll and take photos in the beautiful garden near the Memorial Hall.

How to go: Take Red Line or Green Line to Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall.

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Elephant Mountain

If you’re into hiking then Elephant Mountain should be included in your itinerary. The hike takes 30-40 minutes (going up and down) depending on your pace. The climb maybe tiring but it’s super worth it once you see the view of Taipei City.

The best time to hike is late afternoon, when the sun is about to set. We hiked in the evening and it was really crowded but at least we got to see the beautiful Taipei City. Don’t forget to wear comfortable clothes and shoes and also don’t forget to bring water, towel (trust me, you’ll need it), and bug spray or an insect repellant sticker especially if you’re planning to hike at night.

How to go:

Alight at Xiangshan Station (red line), take exit 2 and walk 10 minutes to the base of the trail.

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Taipei 101 Observatory

It is the tallest building in Taiwan where you’ll get to see a spectacular city view of Taipei. You will also experience riding one of the fastest elevators in the world. It only takes 37 seconds to get to the 89th floor! It is open from 9AM-11Pm but the best time to go is in the evening. You may purchase tickets online or buy it at the 5th floor of Taipei 101 Mall. Tickets for adults are NT$600.

Tip: If you want to eat at Din Tai Fung, get a queue number first before heading to the observatory. Come down after 45 minutes to 1 hour and you’ll be seated in no time. Hello, Xiao Long Bao! 🙂

How to go:

Take the Red Line and alight at Xiangshan Station. Follow the signs leading to Taipei 101, make your way inside the mall (you’ll pass by Din Tai Fung) and go to level 5.

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Yehliu Geopark, Jiufen and Shifen

These three tourist attractions are far from Taipei so commuting was an option but considering the weather, a private car was definitely way more convenient. I ended up getting a private tour via OwnRides. I booked online, chose a sedan good for 3-4 pax, and requested for an English-speaking driver. The tour costs NT$3900 including pick-up/drop-off at the hotel, privacy, and an 8 hour itinerary. I paid NT$330 online as downpayment and paid the remaining balance upon drop-off back to our hotel. Our driver, Jeef Chen, picked us up in our hotel at 9AM sharp. He was an old man, very friendly and accommodating, and has a grandfather vibe which we really liked.

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8 hour Itinerary

Yehliu Geopark

It is a cape found in the northern coast of Taiwan. It is also one of the most visited tourist spots because of its wonderful rock formations especially the iconic Queen’s Head and Princess’ Head.

Our guide allotted one hour for us to explore Yehliu. The place is wonderful as it sits beside the ocean and it’s a really cool place for your OOTDs. I find the rock formations a little bit overrated. Believe me, one hour is really enough because all you’ll see are literally just rock formations.

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Jiufen

After Yehliu, we headed to Jiufen, which is another popular spot in Taiwan. It is a town composed of narrow alleys where you’ll find souvenir shops, street food, and old teahouses. It was lunch time when we got to Jiufen so there were a lot of people already. We had lunch in an authentic noodle place inside one of the old alleys.

I had fun taking photos and exploring the old streets of Jiufen but it was kind of difficult if you want to go souvenir shopping because the streets were narrow and crowded. It also rained when we were there so it was really not the best time to shop.

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Shifen

The last stop in our itinerary was Shifen, also known as the flying lantern street. It is located in the Pingxi area near an active railway train station. This place is famous for its Chinese lanterns where people can write their wishes on it, light it up, and set it into the sky.

It was a one-of-a-kind experience and you shouldn’t miss it. A big lantern costs NT$360. The salesperson will guide you as to what colours you should pick. We chose green, pink, orange, and yellow.

After flying out your lanterns, don’t forget to try the street food beside the lantern shops. We tried shoestring fries with honey mustard dip, Yakult smoothie, and chicken rice with barbeque sauce.

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Ximending Night Market

Our hotel is located within the Ximending area so every night before we head up to our room, we roam around Ximending. It is very similar to Myeongdong in Seoul and is a busy street full of branded shops, restaurants, coffee shops, street food vendors and souvenir shops. The stores open at 12 noon and close late at night. Don’t forget to try their authentic street milk tea.

How to go:

Take the red line and alight at Ximending Station, exit 6.

Museum of Contemporary Arts Taipei

MoCa offers both historical and contemporary art. We were fortunate during our visit because there was an ongoing LGBT exhibit. The exhibit was awesome and it somehow made us understand and appreciate the LGBT community more. The entrance ticket to MoCa is NT$80 including the exhibit fee.

How to go:

Take the red line and alight at Zhongshan Station.

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What to eat:

Unfortunately I was not able to appreciate Taipei’s street food. Although we tried some of the food, I did not really enjoy it. We ordered wagyu cubes and pork sausage and the seller just reheated it and put a cold sauce all over it. The taste wasn’t good. There was also the stinky tofu and when I say stinky, guys, it was super stinky AF! I felt nauseous just by the smell of it. 

If you guys are super adventurous, then go try Taipei’s street food. If you are a semi-diva, LOL, like me, don’t worry because there are lots of restaurants and hole-in-the-wall food shops, too. These restaurants serve more eatable and presentable food 😉

But… wait there’s more! Here are some of the food we tried and actually liked 😉

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Yakult Smoothie and Chicken Rice

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Chicken Rice Stall in Shiufen

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Authentic Beef Noodle Soup in Jiufen

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Must-try: Ice cream with peanut brittle

Cotton Candy cocktail at Playhouse

Cotton Candy cocktail at Playhouse

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Dark chocolate ice cream at Modern Toilet PS: The place is overrated and overpriced. If you’ve tried the toilet-themed restaurant in Boracay, don’t bother going here anymore.

Source: http://www.roc-taiwan.org/ph_en/post/1421.htmlhttps://guidetotaipei.com

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Lifestyle

Celebrity blogger and DJ Ashley Rivera is thrilled with her Vivo endorsement

Dishy celebrity Ashley Rivera travels to relax and is known to have once moved to Las Vegas in the United States apart from her tours in Europe and all around Asia. Apart from being a wanderlust, Ashley is a celebrated blogger and social media hot topic not to mention a famed DJ who spins at the hottest clubs and music festivals.

Ashley Rivera is quite a handful and it is no wonder that Vivo picked her to be the brand’s ambassador. Ashley, believing in the Vivo brand, is excited to be its influencer.

Ashley is one of the freshest members of the Vivo Family who were welcomed at the launch of V7+, Vivo’s latest top-of-the-line offering.

Being a DJ, music is number one for Ashley and as such she enjoys the the V7+’s fully-upgraded AK4376A Hi-Fidelity audio chip. This V7+ feature supports the latest sound technology and levels up mobile audio technology, enabling any music lover to enjoy rich and full rhythms. This audio chip also plays music which answers to the mood or scenario at hand.

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Ashley also appreciates the V7+’s revolutionary 5.99” display. “Having a big phone is a problem because I have such small hands,” she quips in the interview. “But with [the Vivo V7+], watching videos and movies [is enjoyable].” Vivo V7’s 5.99” all-screen Display with an 84.4% screen to body ratio, providing a more exciting and enhanced game and visual experience. And for busy bees like Ashley who juggles all of her day’s activities, the phone’s Smart Split 3.0 feature allows her to check her messages, mails, among other things without interrupting the current running app—perfect for smartphone users on the go like her.

Ashley, who has over a hundred thousand followings on Instagram, vouches for the Vivo V7+’s 24MP clearer selfie, front facing camera with LED flash and smart photography algorithms which provide clear-cut, crisp, and natural-looking photos. A self-proclaimed selfie addict herself, Ashley’s feed are packed with beautiful selfies—thank you to the V7+’s above par camera features.

Ashley, just like the rest of the Vivo Family circle of influencers, will be going around in Vivo’s mall tours to entertain fans and promote the Vivo V7+, known as one of the first smartphones in the world to pack in a 24MP front facing camera. The four-month mall tour which commenced last September will run until the end of 2017 and will feature the hottest celebrity endorsers of the top smartphone brand.

For inquiries about Vivo, visit the Vivo website at www.vivo.com/ph  or check out their Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/VivoPhil), Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/vivophil) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/vivo_phil) accounts.

 

 

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Lifestyle

Vivo influencers part of the MEGA Fashion Week Spring Summer 2018

Verniece Enciso, a voracious blogger on topics of lifestyle, beauty, travel, and fashion, and part of the Vivo Family circle was Vivo V7+ fashion insider at the recently-concluded MEGA Fashion Week Spring Summer 2018. The MEGA Fashion Week which officially unveiled at a pre-party event last October 23 at the posh Twenty Four Seven Mckinley in the heart of the bustling Bonifacio Global City, is co-sponsored by Vivo, an established smartphone brand popular for its sleek and stylish designs coupled with thumbprint, top-of-the-line features.

The happenings in the glamorous opening party graced by the who’s who in the fashion arena were all captured using the Vivo V7+ clearer-selfie, perfect shot smartphone. A host of MakingMEGA stars who have graced the covers of MEGA Magazine were also in attendance and their presence were snapped into a collection of eventful photographs using the V7+.

Verniece, who arrived in a simple but elegant wine-red number spent some time with the event guests and media at the dedicated selfie booth, taking selfies using her Vivo V7+. The show started at 9:00 pm where Verniece officially welcomed the crowd to the MEGA Fashion Week event and acknowledged the night’s special guest Dr. Vicky Belo escorted by husband Hayden Kho. She proceeded taking selfie snaps with the MEGA executives and fashion guru John Herrera who was, as well, the featured designer for the evening.

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Verniece along with MEGA muses Kisses Delavin and the country’s most favorite sweetheart Kathryn Bernardo belong to Vivo’s pool of celebrity. Having supported Vivo products, the Vivo Family’s latest pride is the Vvio V7+, perhaps the best fit yet in taking the best fashion selfies. Dubbed as a selfie-centric smartphone, the V7+ boasts of a 24MP clearer selfie, front-facing camera with LED flash and smart photography algorithms which provides for a clear-cut, crisp, and natural-looking photo, embracing the look and feel of glossy fashion centerfolds. With the V7+’s 24 MP camera’s built-in Bokeh effect, chic and polished selfies come out flavored with artful charm. The Bokeh effect—one of the most popular camera filters to come out in recent years since the advent of selfie-taking—adds a semblance of drama and imagination with its aesthetic blurred effect. Moreover, the V7+’s Face Beauty 7.0 feature gives out selfies with an airbrush perfection as its beautifying aftereffect produces fresher and brighter-looking skin, with a host of filters to pick from to fit the day’s mood or the OOTD’s feel and aura.

Vivo V7+ is a selfie-centric smartphone which represents the brand’s mission of empowering self-expression of the next generation. It features the most advanced technologies, not only to the cameras but to all aspects, from photo shooting to display, helping media-savvy and social media devoted consumers to capture and enjoy their most significant moments.

 

For inquiries about Vivo, visit the Vivo website at www.vivo.com/ph or check out their Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/VivoPhil), Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/vivophil/), and Twitter (https://twitter.com/vivo_phil) accounts.

 

 

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Beauty, Lifestyle

Achieve great hair with Panasonic’s 4-in-1 Ion Hairstyler

I was born with naturally straight hair but somehow the almost-everyday-hair-tying in the gym, hair colouring, and harsh hairstyling (blowdrying, curling, and ironing) make my hair dry, brittle, frizzy, and wavy. Even on days when I just want to let my hair down, the frizziness annoys the hell out of me, and I end up almost always ironing or blowdrying it causing more damage to my hair.

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I was so psyched when Primer Philippines sent me the new Panasonic 4-in-1 Ion Hairstyler. It comes with four hairstyling tools which are blow brush, roller brush, slim roller brush, and a nozzle. The blow brush is great for hair straightening, roller brush for big waves, slim roller brush for smaller, beachy waves, and nozzle for general blowdrying. 

It’s easy to use and you can practically use it on either wet or dry hair! BEST.THING.EVER! This hairstyling tool won’t damage your hair because it emits ions which gives you smooth, shiny, damage-free and manageable hair. It’s lightweight, handy and definitely travel-friendly. You can now create a wide range of hairstyles in your own home. It’s super convenient to use, too; all you have to do is click and attach or click and detach the tools from the base.

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Panasonic’s 4-in-1 Ion Hairstyler comes in a standard box which includes four hairstyling tools and base. Its pink colour is so adorable and is perfect for us, girls and guys, too!  It has two heat/speed selection and comes with a 360 degrees swivel cord so it doesn’t tangle up during or after use. 

I love how perfect it is for women on the go – shower, towel dry your hair, and achieve salon-styled hair using the Panasonic Ion Hairstyler in minutes. Unlike normal blowdrying, which takes so much time to dry up your hair, Panasonic Ion Hairstyler cuts the drying time in half. So even if you’re in a rush, you can still use this and get beautiful hair! 

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Have you tried the new Panasonic Ionic Hairstyler yet? 🙂

Grab yours for P2,799 available at Abenson’s Glorietta, Ascott, Ayala Malls and SM City East Ortigas.

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Beauty

First thoughts on Careline Better Than Basic Liquid Lipstick

Careline, a Filipino brand, has been in the beauty market for years. It’s Ever Bilena’s baby sister and targets the younger generation. It has definitely evolved to a cooler brand loved by today’s generation or what we know as millennials

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Careline’s newest lipstick collection called Better Than Basic are finally here! The lipstick line has twelve beautiful lipstick shades which include dark, sultry shades and of course, my-lips-but-better lippies. The whole list included in the collection are Semi Sweet, Gotta Go, Normcore, Glaze, Brick’d, Tutu, In Bloom, Pop, Dark Matter, Craving, Upper Hand, and Wall Flower. Photos of swatches were grabbed from Careline’s Instagram Account, @carelineph.

As much as I wanted to try all twelve shades, I just chose the three shades closest to my heart LOL and those were Gotta Go, Normcore and Tutu. Let’s talk about what I love about these lipsticks first. It is housed in a tube-type liquid lipstick container with a doe applicator. I love that it has a creamy texture yet gives a matte finish. It’s highly pigmented and lasts for 5-6 hours. I am also grateful that it doesn’t have an overpowering makeup scent but just a subtle whiff of vanilla. Thank God. 

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Gotta Go (warm nude)

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Normcore

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Tutu

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Now, the negatives about this lipstick – the doe applicator seems a little rough whenever I use it. It also dries quickly (not a bad thing) but I find it hard to blend and build up the lipstick. I feel like I have to redo everything because if I’ll just apply a second layer, I’ll just mess it up. 

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It is not the best liquid lipstick but I’d still go for it because of the colours and did I mention how affordable these lipsticks are – they’re less than P200! I suggest you guys get nude colours so the flakiness wouldn’t be so obvious when you apply it.

Careline’s Better Than Basic collection is available in Watsons and SM Beauty Department Stores.

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Lifestyle

Jeunesse Anion’s Millenial Fair

I know how difficult it is for us girls whenever we have our periods. Imagine what we go through every month-uncomfortable, icky feeling, mood swings, crazy cravings and uncontrollable zits popping on our faces! Yup, it’s so hard being a girl. We want a sanitary pad that has quick absorption and can truly protect us from stains, bacteria and odour. Jeunesse Anion has all that plus an Anion chip! 

So what’s an Anion chip? 

Anions are negatively charged atom which are naturally generated by evaporating water. These are also found in natural places such as beaches. In layman’s term, anions are Vitamins of the Air. They are the reasons why we feel so energized when we go near these places. Cations, however, are the the opposite of anions. These are found in the decay of UV rays, exhaust, smoke and the like. Anions act as neutralizers to the harmful effects brought by cations.

Jeunesse Anion releases a lot of negative ions which makes that uneasy period feeling disappear. Aside from that, it also helps balance PH and hormone levels, protects against germs in the air, reduces inflammation, fights against vaginal irritations, eliminates unwanted odour, and lessens the discomfort of dysmenorrhea. 

Last week, Jeunesse Anion invited me to attend their Millenial Fair held at Marriott Hotel hosted by the beautiful sportscaster, Jeanine Beatrice. There were three empowered women speakers- Dr. Faith Suelen (OBGYNE), Mille Romero (Health Coach) and Nicole Romero (Beauty Blogger at @beautyandsparkl), who talked about reproductive health, holistic health living and how to stay pretty. They also discussed the importance of maintaining a well-balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. 

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Mille Romero, a health coach, shared some healthy recipes for women on the go.  I specifically love the fresh fruit smoothie recipe she shared which includes cranberry, mixed berries, banana, barley and greek yoghurt. The nutrient-packed smoothie helps boost one’s immune system and is really easy to make. Aside from the smoothie recipe, she also shared how to make a five-minute salad dressing and red pesto sauce.

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Sportscaster-slash-host, Jeanine Beatrice

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Jeunesse Anion’s Marketing Head, Ms. MJ Huang

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Mille Romero and Jeanine whipping up a healthy smoothie

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With fellow blogger, Gen-zel

Aside from the very informative talks, Jeunesse Anion introduced their newest endorsers – tennis superstar sisters, Christine and Clarice Patrimonio. Unfortunately, Clarice wasn’t able to make it so we were only able to chat with Christine.

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Jeunesse Anion products were showcased in the event including the Ultra Day Pad, Ultra Night Pad, Panty Liner, Ultra Day Non-Wing and All Night Pad. They also launched their all-day singles pad which is perfect from day to night and fits perfectly in your purse! I personally love Jeunesse Anion’s panty liner because it keeps me fresh everyday and I also love the all night pad because it 100% protects me from leaks even when I workout.

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Jeunesse Anion All-day Pad

The event was catered by Marriott Hotel and it was also made possible by Jergens Philippines, Clara Ole, Dona Elena, Caronia, Sante Barley, and Old Vineyard.

Jeunesse Anion Sanitary Napkin is available on Lazada, Watsons, select Mercury Drug outlets, and SM Health and Beauty Section .

PS: Don’t forget to check out Jeunesse Anion’s combo packages on their website, too! 🙂

(Source: https://www.jeunesseanion.com/about/what-are-anions/)

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Beauty, Giveaway

Colourette’s Peach Purrfect Mineral Eyeshadow Palette Review

Colourette Cosmetics, known for their super pigmented cheek tints and matte lipsticks, recently launched their first eye shadow palette which is called the Peach Purrfect Mineral Eyeshadow Palette. It comes in a baby pink packaging and has ten beautiful eyeshadows – Rebel Heart, Nighty Night, On Top, Peach Please, Beyonce, Just Me, Glow Getter, Laters Baby, Get It and Not Today.

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These mineral eyeshadows are formulated with Vitamin E providing moisture to the skin around the eyes. And did you know that Colourette is cruelty-free? So that means no animals were harmed during makeup formulation. Double YES!

Honestly-speaking, it’s not as pigmented as I thought it would be. You need a few swipes to be able to see the eyeshadows’ pigments. I applied primer on my arm to let the colours pop. I expected a lot of fallouts but it created a few fallouts IRL (in real life). I appreciate the shades combined in one palette because they’re versatile. The palette contains two shimmery shades and eight matte shades. I also like the fact that the shimmery shades double as highlighter. It’s like getting two products in one palette. My favourite shades are Beyonce, Peach Please and Glow Getter because these shades are flexible and can be used from day to night. 

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Here are a few FOTDs using Colourette Cosmetics’ Peach Purrfect Mineral Eyeshadow Palette.

Look 1: Girl’s Night Out

First, I prepped my eyelid with a concealer then applied Just Me all over the lid. I chose On Top for my crease to create a depth then layered Nighty Night on the outer V for that smokey eye look. I also added a touch of Laters Baby for a shimmery effect and a dash of Just Me on my tear duct. Lastly, I applied On Top on my lower lashline to finish the look. Guys, don’t forget to blend! It’s the most important key in creating sultry eyes.

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Look 2: Subtle Peach Kitten

I ran out of eyeshadow primer so I used concealer to prep my lids. I used Just Me all over my lids then applied On Top mixed with Peach Please for my crease. I applied Beyonce to add a hint of shimmer. Finally, back to Peach Please for my lower lashline to finish this natural day look.

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Hurry up and get your own Colourette Palette on Lazada or www.colourette.com for only P999.00! 🙂

PS: Hi guys! I’ll be giving away a Colourette Peach Purrfect Eyeshadow Palette and Kelsey Cheek and Lip Oil to two lucky girls!

You know the drill, guys. Just follow these instructions 🙂

1. Repost this photo and tag two of your friends. (Don’t forget to use #itchyfeetwondersxcolourette)

2. Follow @_dianesalazar0289 and @colourette.cosmetics on Instagram.

3. Enter the raffle on my blog.

4. Open to PH residents only.

5. Don’t forget to share this blog post on Facebook.

5.Giveaway runs from September 21 to September 29, 2017.

6. I’ll be choosing one winner from the raffle and another winner from using #itchyfeetwondersxcolourette. The winner will be announced on September 29 at 1:00pm 🙂

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Beauty, Lifestyle

Beauty Lab Whitening by Suaviss Experience

My recent beach trips and out of the country escapades made my skin dull, tired and uneven. My skin’s calling out for help; even with sunblock, my skin go dried up because of too much sun exposure. I was so excited when Beauty Lab Whitening by Suaviss invited me to try their signature Red Light Collagen Therapy for the face and body. It consists of a four-step treatment that promises to whiten, even out the skin tone, and enhance the elasticity of the skin. 

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Last Monday, I had a very relaxing pamper session at Beauty Lab Whitening by Suaviss located at BGC Stopover. Upon entering, Glitter (what a cute name, right?), the front desk officer, greeted me with a warm smile and offered me something to drink. She also asked me to answer the customer’s questionnaire. The second page has a checklist of all your skin concerns and will be the basis of how long you’ll be inside the ray therapy machine.

Lab White treatment is one of the most effective programs in South Korea. The salon was well-lit and has a very inviting ambiance. It was really nice to chill at the receiving area complete with comfortable chairs. The salon has a minimal design and the all-white colour will make you feel relaxed already. There was also a shelf displaying their products in the area. 

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The treatment room includes a small changing area, prepping area, exfoliation room and the Suaviss Lab White R630 Collagen Machine. Before the treatment, I was asked to remove all my clothes, change into a disposable underwear and put on my bathrobe. Ate Jovy, my therapist, also asked me to remove my makeup and my contact lenses, too. Beauty Lab Whitening is well- prepared! Makeup remover and contact lens solution and case were provided in the room.

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Changing room

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Exfoliation Room

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Suaviss Lab White R630 Collagen Machine

I was asked to go to the exfoliation area where the four-step treatment took place. The first step was exfoliation and removal of dead skin cells. My therapist used a non-irritating exfoliant made of sugar cane extracts which has a powder-like texture making the skin extra soft sans the rough, salt-like friction of ordinary exfoliants. It almost felt like a massage oil. She proceeded to apply and (semi-massage) it all over my body. I was interviewing her at the beginning of the session but I eventually dozed off because it was that relaxing! After 20 minutes of exfoliating my whole body, she asked me to sit on the bed. She washed off the exfoliant and asked me to dry myself with the towel provided. The second step was applying the preconditioning ointment which has a strong whitening effect and improves skin tone. She slathered the ointment on my body making sure that it was applied evenly. She then asked me to step inside the R630 machine for 15 minutes. Don’t let the red lights intimidate you as it is UV-free and non-invasive. The ray therapy helps the exfoliant and ointment penetrate the skin to give you the softest skin you’ll ever have. It was definitely the highlight of the treatment for me. It was very comfortable as if I was in a sauna; complete with mp3 and a chair inside. After relaxing inside the therapy machine, Ate Jovy asked me to step out and go to the prepping area where she applied the post-conditioning ointment which helped seal the nutrients from the treatment. 

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Suaviss products

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I noticed a big improvement on my skin right after one session. My skin tone got lighter and my skin definitely felt softer and suppler. The whole process took 1 1/2 hours and I just felt incredibly amazing after. I can’t wait for my next session!

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If you guys wanna try their Red Collagen Therapy, you may check out their Instagram @beautylabwhiteningph. Beauty Lab Whitening by Suaviss is located at 3rd Floor, BGC Stopover, Taguig City. You may also contact them at 546-4601/0927-5120000.

Guys, use BLWDIANE10 when booking to avail 10% off on your treatment 🙂

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Dine, Travel

What to eat in Osaka and Kyoto

As I promised you guys, I’ll be writing a separate post about the food I tried and tasted in Osaka and Kyoto. I was overwhelmed with the food selection in Osaka and Kyoto because they have the best street food. I’m not really an adventurous eater, I’m more of a I’ve-got-hungry eyes-and-I-want-that-I-want-this and ooohhh-that’s-a-cute-food-I’ll-try-it type of eater. Japan has a wide selection of street food and I’m pretty sure that just by seeing the food, you’ll get full instantly. You will not want to eat in restaurants anymore. Hashtag FOODPORN!

After exploring the vermillion torii gates of Fushimi Shrine, I’m sure you’ll be tired and famished. The alley just outside the shrine is full of street food! Now, if you find yourself in Osaka, Dotonbori is the place to be! It’s a long street full of shops, restaurants and street food.

Here are some of the food I tried:

Rice wrapped in bacon and cheese, 500JPY

Bacon + cheese = BEST COMBO ever! It’s very delicious, filling and satisfying. The flavors just blend well together. And guys, it has BACON, bacon and bacon and it’s topped with torched CHEESE. Need I say more?

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Beef Steak on a skewer

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Chicken Yakitori

Grilled bite-sized chicken pieces usually thighs and breasts smothered with teriyaki sauce. It’s the perfect match to an ice cold Sapporo beer.

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Shaved ice with strawberry toppings

The stall we found in Kyoto only sells strawberry shaved ice; more flavors are being sold in Dotonbori. It has a refreshing taste and it’ll definitely quench your thirst.

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Dango

Japanese dumpling which is made from rice flour and is similar to mochi. The unique thing about it is the sauce is made up of sugar and soy-based sauce. It’s a weird combination but it works.

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Matcha Ice Cream

It’s made of authentic matcha. I swear, guys, it’s 100% green tea goodness. I couldn’t stop myself from eating it. I decided to get another serving. You can choose from plain matcha or matcha and vanilla.

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Takoyaki

Fried octopus filled with green onions, ginger, pieces of octopus and tempura crisps. It’s topped with dried bonito flakes, mayonnaise and special takoyaki sauce. I’m not a big fan of takoyaki but my boyfriend is. He said it was way tastier than the takoyaki in Manila.

Frozen Butterbeer

Butterbeer, Potterheads! I’m not a Harry Potter fan but this frozen butterbeer is the bomb! It tastes like butterscotch with condensed milk. Univeral Studio Japan’s butterbeer has no alcohol which makes it totally drinkable for kids. You can have it in a plastic cup or a limited edition Harry Potter mug.

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Luke’s Lobster Roll

The famous lobster roll which is juicy lobster sandwiched in between buttered bread. You may also try their club and shrimp rolls. Oishii!

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Ichiran Ramen

There are a lot of popular ramen places in Osaka and one of them is called Ichiran. You have to place your orders through a vendo machine. Choose your ramen bowl and add extras; I usually order extra half noodles and eggs.

Have you tried these food yet? You can add more food on the list by commenting below 🙂

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Beauty

OFRA Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick in Manila Review

If there’s a makeup trend that I’m pretty sure will go on forever, that’ll be the  MLBB (My Lips But Better) lipstick shades. I think it’ll be a forever trend because it matches almost all types of makeup – colourful, smokey, natural. It also suits almost all types of skin tones. And yup, it suits almost every woman. 

Recently, Glamourbox together with OFRA Cosmetics created a nude matte lippie called Manila. It’s formulated to suit Filipinas. I have fair skin and so far, it also suits me. The packaging, like other long-lasting lipsticks, is in a transparent bottle with a doe applicator.  It has a creamy consistency with a vanilla, caramel scent. Guys, that OFRA scent always gets me! Promise. It’s like you’re applying dessert on your lips. It’s also super pigmented. One swipe is enough to coat your lips. It doesn’t dry out your lips unlike other matte lipsticks. But if you really have the driest lips ever, you can apply lip balm first, let it set for a few minutes then finally apply Manila. What I really like about this lipstick is that it stays almost all day sans lip primer. It stays on even after two full meals, two cups of coffee and few kissie smacks. 

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Lippie Tip: You can actually mix and match this nude lipstick with other colors. I tried mixing Manila with other OFRA lipsticks. I used Manila as base then topped it off with Laguna Beach, Mocha and Aries. I love how it can instantly glam up your look. Its flexible shade will definitely make your simple, casual look or smokey, sultry makeup stand out. 

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Manila with Laguna Beach

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Manila with Mocha

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Manila with Aries

The OFRA Long-Lasting Lipsticks are available for P850 on glamourbox.ph, BeautyMNL and Zalora

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Travel

Travel Guide: Osaka,Kyoto & Nara Japan

I’ve been wanting to see Japanese temples and experience Japanese culture for the longest time. I’ve seen some in Tokyo but I really wanted to see Osaka, Kyoto, and Nara. Last week, I finally got to see these cities. 

How to go:

Local airlines such as Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific Air and Air Asia have direct flights from Manila to Osaka (Kansai). I booked through PAL because I needed to use my Mabuhay Miles before it expires next year. My flight was a connecting flight and has a layover in Taipei. It was a two hour travel from Manila to Taipei, a 1 1/2 hour layover, and finally, a 4 hour flight to Osaka.

How to go to Kyoto from Kansai International Airport:

Head to the ticketing area and make sure to buy a ticket paired with an ICOCA for JR Haruka Limited Express. The travel time from the airport to Kyoto is roughly one hour.

ICOCA card is their version of Hongkong’s Octopus Card. You can reload this card and can be use for unlimited train rides, buses and even payments at convenience stores. Check this link for more information. 

Itinerary:

As much as I want to recommend a no itinerary trip coz you know it’s spontaneous and all that, I highly suggest that you research and plan everything out before going to Japan or mostly anymore to save you time and so you’ll be able to explore the country more.

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Pocket Wifi:

If you want to save on your data, if you’ll be staying for at least one week in Japan or if you just wanna be online 24/7, it’s always better to rent a pocket wifi than buying a local sim card. Pocket wifi devices are available in the arrival hall of Kansai Airport. I read that you can rent it on the spot, but just to be sure, always book online. For this trip, we opted to rent Global Advanced Communications’ Premium Wifi for 1290JPY per day. You can choose from the following plans:

ECO Wifi 21MBPS

Standard Wifi 75MBPS

Premium Wifi 75MBPS with Wide Coverage

Super Premium Wifi 187.5 MBPS

What I like about the wifi in Japan is it’s ultra-fast. No fail, guys. You can download and stream videos without buffering. All plans can accommodate 5-10 devices at the same time. Anyway, we paid online and we just picked up the device in the post office located at the 2nd floor of the arrival hall.

When to go:

If you have read my older posts, you’ll know that I always prefer to go out of the country during spring and fall. But it was summer when I visited Osaka and Kyoto. Guys, it was SWEATfest. LOL. It was like I went to Boracay because of the heat.

There are pros and cons of visiting other countries during summer time and one of them is definitely a lighter luggage because no coats, no layering, no boots. I’m not saying that I don’t like it but I won’t suggest it. 

Where to stay:

You can definitely stay at hostels, airbnbs and three-star hotels. For this trip (since my boyfriend and I were celebrating our anniversary), we decided to stay in Citadines ApartHotel in Kyoto for a night and Hilton Osaka for the rest of the trip.

I definitely recommend Citadines ApartHotel because it’s an apartment-hotel complete with kitchen equipment. It’s also affordable at P7200 per night. It is close to Gojo Station and is a 20-minute walk to Gion where you can spot geishas. 

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We stayed in Kyoto for 1 1/2 days then transferred to Osaka for the rest of the trip. We chose to stay at Hilton Osaka. Yup, the price was a little steep but 100% sure that you’ll be a pampered customer. Plus, the location is just across Osaka Station.

What to do:

KYOTO

If you’ll search PINTEREST, you’ll discover that 1 1/2 days isn’t enough to see Kyoto. Yes, it’s true because there are more to see aside from Arashiyama Bamboo Forest and Fushima Shrine. But if you’re time constraint, like us, 1 1/2 days would be sort of enough.

Gion Street

It’s an entertainment street surrounded by restaurants and izakayas cased in traditional Japanese houses. Geishas, entertaining guests, can be spotted roaming the streets of Gion. I researched some do’s and don’ts about geishas and I learned that you can’t take photos with them and photos of them in general. I just secretly snapped a photo of a geisha who passed us by. 

It was a 20-minute walk from Citadines ApartHotel  but we were exhausted from our flight so we opted to hail a cab to get to Gion. We had an authentic Japanese dinner at one of the restaurants here. Tsubi ordered a grill-your-own-chicken set meal while I ordered a duck set meal. We roamed the streets after dinner and went back to our hotel because we were tired, AF (excuse the expression).

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Arashiyama Bamboo Forest

We woke up early the next day to see the very touristy Bamboo Forest. It’s one of the must-sees in Kyoto and I couldn’t agree more. You’ll get a feeling of serenity and peace just by standing in the middle of the beautiful bamboos. 

How to goAlight at Saga Arashiyama JR Sagano Line

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Fushimi-Inari Taisha Shrine

It’s definitely better to go here early in the morning where the shrines are still clear of tourists. We went here around 11am and I got frustrated because I couldn’t take photos without photo bombers. I know, I know, my fault. Haha. The famous vermilion torii gates welcomed us and it was a majestic thing to see. If you’re into hiking and long walks, you can trek until the end of the shrine to see the sacred Mount Inari. 

How to goIt is a 10-15 minute walk from JR Inari Station.

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Kinkakuji Temple

I’m pretty sure you’ve also heard of this temple. It is also known as the Golden Pavilion. It was very beautiful in real life. According to japan-guide.com, Kinkakuji is a zen temple whose top two floors are completely covered in gold leaf. It is built overlooking a large pond and the way it reflects on the water gives the temple more character. 

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There’s a tea garden at the end of the temple where they serve authentic green tea and a small piece of cake for 500JPY. Since it was summer, we chose to sit inside where there was a cooling fan. Their green tea was over-the-top delicious! It was 100% authentic and it was the best I’ve ever had. I didn’t really like the small cake but since it was paired with the tea, I ate it anyway. 

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How to go: We took a cab but you can also take the subway to Kitaoji Station (Karasuma Line).

OSAKA

After a tiring 1 1/2 days in Kyoto, it’s time to see what Osaka has to offer. We rode a rapid train going to Osaka which was just 30 minutes. We stopped at Osaka Station and made our way to Hilton Osaka. 

Dotonbori

We checked-in and rest for a while and made our way to the famous Dotonbori for dinner. It’s a long street filled with shops and restaurants. If you’re a foodie, you will definitely love this place because you can find different kinds of food everywhere! We strolled throughout the street and found Ichiran Ramen, yup, the famous ramen place. The line was exaggerating long, which was a good sign that that restaurant serves delicious meals. After dinner, we found ourselves walking again and looking for dessert. We bought one of the street desserts which was shaved ice filled with strawberry syrup. (Are you a foodie? Don’t worry, I’ll post all must-eat street food in Osaka on a separate post).

How to go: Alight at Namba Station

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Universal Studio

I never wanted to visit Universal Studio Osaka because I’ve been to Universal Studio Singapore and Los Angeles but since I was in Japan already, I might as well maximize my vacation and see it anyway. We went there 10 minutes before the opening time. According to my research, it’s always better to go there before people arrive and it’s surely a must to buy your USJ entrance ticket and express pass online. There were several plans you can choose from but since my boyfriend and I were not big fans of rides, I just bought the 4 rides express pass tickets via Klook.com. Special things about USJ were the Amazing Spider-Man 3D, Despicable Me Minion Mayhem 4D, Harry Potter World and Hello Kitty Park.

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We took our time in the Minion Park because everything was super cute. We wanted to try the minion ice cream sandwich but chose to eat the shaved ice with Hawaiian syrup served in a cute minion bucket because 1. we were so thirsty 2. I needed ICE because the heat was just excruciating.

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For lunch, we ate at a pizza place inside USJ. It was pretty yummy and filling but guys, it was so expensive. The serving was only good for one. If you want to save up, make sure to bring snacks with you.

How to goAlight at Universal City Station. You’ll know that you’re in the right direction because a lot of kids will be inside the train with you.

Osaka Castle

One of the main highlights of Osaka is the famous Osaka Castle. According to japan-guide.com, it is owned by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and was the largest castle in his era. 

It was a 15-20 minute walk from the station. The heat became unbearable as we walked but good thing, we brought an umbrella to protect us from the sun. The castle was huge and we chose to just roam around the castle itself. 

How to go: Alight at Osakajokoen Station then walk for 15 minutes to reach the castle.

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Umeda Sky Building

After an exciting day with the deer, we were actually supposed to go straight to Kobe for some Kobe beef but we were so tired so we just went straight to the hotel to rest. We went out to eat dinner and decided to check out the Umeda Sky Building. The skyscraper is 173 meters tall and has two towers connected by a floating garden. A super long escalator will bring you to the observatory deck. It’s similar to the Petronas towers in Malaysia but this one’s smaller and shorter. We got in for 1000JPY per head. 

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Travel Tip: I suggest you go at night because it just makes the view more romantic. Though, it’s somehow hard to take a photo because of the strong wind.

How to goAlight at Umeda/Osaka Station, walk for 10-15 minutes and you’ll reach the sky building.

Nara

Nara Deer Park

Did you know that deer are considered to be messengers of the gods in Shinto? Japanese treats them well and these adorable deer can freely roam around this park. If you wanna feed them, there are stalls in the park selling deer crackers for only 150JPY. They were really cute and every deer looked like Bambi but once they see the food, they’ll semi-mob you. I got scared so I ended up feeding one deer only. LOL. Some deer know how to bow! How cute is that?

How to goTake the rapid express and alight at Kintetsu Nara Station and you’ll reach the park in 5 minutes. 

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Todai-ji Temple (Big Buddha)

We walked for 20 minutes to get to Todai-ji Temple. This temple houses the big buddha and the world’s largest wooden building called Daiutsuden. This place is huge and if you really want to know more about this temple, one day isn’t enough. My boyfriend and I didn’t get to explore the whole area but at least we got to see famous bronzed buddha. The entrance fee is 500JPY.

How to goWalk for 20 minutes until you reach the Nandaimon Gate. 

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I’ll be posting about Osaka and Kyoto street food on another post. Have you guys been to Japan? What’s your most memorable experience in Osaka, Kyoto or Nara? Comment down 🙂