(photo credit:Gelbert Apdal)
Cai Subijano is the current assistant editor of Philippine Star’s Supreme and maintains a regular lifestyle column called “Wild Card Inside“. She dabbles in film and is shooting a small role for Marie Jamora’s first feature-length film “Ang Nawawala”. Cai also does advertising work as a voice talent for Hit Record Productions and is a veteran in the VTR-circuit represented by Cosmopolitan talent agency. Her most recent project was a supporting role in a TVC for Nestle Drumstick. (That’s MUA Ricci Chan in Version C!).
And yes, if you think she looks familiar she joined Binibining Pilipinas back in 2011 and this year, she is joining Miss Philippines-Earth. Watch Cai compete for the crown during the coronation night on May 27th.
If Chuvaness’ Glossy feature is “30 things for the high maintenance chick,” I don’t know what mine is because I can’t count how many products I included here! And unlike Ginggay, bathing, and fixing my hair and makeup (including body makeup on certain occasions) will take me three hours. Mine might be the longest Glossy feature yet. Seriously, if Chuvaness is high-maintenance, I don’t know what to call myself, but for my entry, I’ll just call it “the beauty queen stash.”
Organix Ever Straight Brazilian Keratin Therapy Shampoo
Organix Soft and Silky Vanilla Silk Conditioner (because I couldn’t find the Brazilian Keratin Therapy Conditioner)
Organix Brazilian Keratin Therapy Anti-Breakage Serum
Davines Nourishing Vegetarian Miracle—for when I’ve abused my hair too much
I normally use whatever my mom buys from the grocery store—Sun Silk, Cream Silk, Head and Shoulders, etc., but upon seeing the Organix line in the SM Beauty Department, I had to grab a couple of bottles. I actually discovered the brand five years ago while grocery store shopping in the US and what truly got me addicted was how divine my hair smelled after! Plus, after getting my hair colored using Schwarzkopf’s organic Essensity line (by Doods Dimaano of Salon Signatura), I was advised to use organic products to wash my hair to maintain the color. Too bad though that they’re much more expensive here in Manila.
Skin Food’s Coffee Body Scrub—when I feel bacne and chest-ne coming on; it smells like a yummier version of coffee
AHAVA Uplifting Butter Salt—to exfoliate before shaving
Asian Secrets Lulur Whitening Body Scrub—for knees and elbows. I’m not sure if it really works, but I found Solenn Heussaff saying, “Puting walang tinatago” in the Asian Secrets TVC so amusing, I decided to buy it
Kiehl’s Crème de Corps Nurturing Body Washing Cream—saved my dry, itchy skin after a couple of weeks using Safeguard!
Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap 8-in-1 Hemp Tea Tree Pure-Castille Soap Made with Organic Oils—a wonderfully quirky and certified fair trade product; a little goes a long way as a body wash or as a clarifying shampoo.
Beyond Bath Organics Sunflower Soothing Soap-free Body Wash—for travel
(Not pictured: Jurlique Rose Hand Cream—I love putting this on before bed at night because it smells like a dream. In the morning, I wake up with baby soft hands.)
I’m OBSESSED with sun protection. In fact, whenever I find out that someone doesn’t use sunscreen, I can’t help but mildly reprimand them! Seriously, we’ve come a long since Coppertone—sunscreen doesn’t feel sticky and oily anymore, so there’s really no reason not to use them. Just think about it: If you use sunscreen, you can prevent sun damage (aka skin cancer, sun spots, and WRINKES!!!). If I can help it, I never go lower than SPF 30. I always apply sunscreen on my face, neck, chest, arms, and the back of my hands, especially if I’m driving because I don’t want Sarah Jessica Parker hands!! And whenever I remember to, I reapply ever two hours.
Aveeno Continuous Protection Sunblock Spray SPF 45—great for traveling because it doesn’t spill and you can spray hard-to-reach areas
Vaseline Healthy White SPF 24 Triple Lightening—for everyday use
Proactiv Daily Protection Plus Sunscreen SPF 30—non-oily and non-comedogenic
VMV Hypoallergenics Armada Face Cover SPF 30—the Holy Grail of sunscreens
Belo Essentials Sun Expert SPF 40—the texture is surprisingly similar to Armada)
The Face Shop Oil Free Sun Cream SPF 35—I got this for free at a Meg party (Face of the Night daw!) and keep it in my bag
For removing makeup, I used to use Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil, but switched to Etude House Cleansing Oil when I found out it was just as effective for a fraction of the price. Then I switched to The Face Shop because it’s more accessible.
The Face Shop Oil Specialist in Fresh and Brightening—a little more expensive than Etude House; works great as a foundation and stippling brush cleaner!
Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System—on days when makeup is especially heavy; it’s been compared to the Clarisonic and I got it for a song.
I don’t actually use all of these products on my face—my skincare routine is just going through a transition. I used to use Proactiv faithfully day and night, but now that my skin is 100 percent pimple-free (blackheads are another matter altogether), I’ve decided that perhaps it’s time to address my skin’s other needs. I’m already quite fair, but I’ve learned that the reason why Korean women have such nice, glowing skin is because they use whitening products. The goal isn’t necessarily to have whiter skin, but to just fade out blemishes and achieve evenly-toned, luminescent skin.
Pond’s White Beauty Gentle Exfoliating Foam—the Pond’s White Beauty Line is natural daw
Pond’s White Beauty Pore Correcting Toner—para matching na sa line
L’Oreal Skin Genesis Pore Minimizing Serum—mom bought it for me, I use it during daytime
Shiseido White Lucent Brightening Protective Cream—SPF 15, for day
Avon Anew 360 White Intensive Correcting Serum—my nighttime serum
Pond’s Flawless White Brightening Night Cream—Pond’s Flawless White is the more advanced whitening line daw
L’Oreal Revitalift Double Lifting Eye Cream—for night because it contains AHA. I can’t tell you if it really works because my eyes aren’t wrinkly yet; I just use it for preventative measures
Shiseido Sun Protection Eye Cream SPF 25— #sunscreenobsession
Avene TriAcneal –to prevent blemishes, only at night because it contains AHA
Save Our Skin Roll-On Clindamycin Phosphate—my beauty find at Mercury Drug; only P98! Dries up my pimple in a jiff. Who needs Mario Badescu when I have this??
Of course, all the topical creams in the world won’t help if you don’t care for your skin inside out. Fish Oil prevents inflammation, while I credit my blemish-free skin to 50 mg Zinc Gluconate. Seriously, Google “zinc + pimple prevention,” then try it for yourself. I tell everyone who has problems with zits to try this out!
Apart from my #sunscreenobsession, I’m counting on the Slendertone Face prevent my face from falling off when I’m 60. Luckily, my mom doesn’t look her age, but I’m not taking any chances. When I interviewed Sue Lewis, the Asia Pacific business development manager for Slendertone, she said that if I start using it now, by the “pure logic” of the product, I should be able to maintain my 24-year-old looks. Sorry, mom. Looks like I’m going to look better than you will when I age! (Just kidding! Love you, mom.)
During my stint in Mega magazine, I received a lot of free perfume. I also get a lot of perfume as gifts, so I really just use whatever I get.
Avon Women of Earth—for day, I thought it was appropriate, since I am currently a Miss Philippines-Earth candidate (watch me on May 27 for the coronation night!)
Leyende Beach Bomb—perfect for summer
Chance by Chanel—for night, LOVE THIS
Covet by Sarah Jessica Parker—I don’t want her hands, but I wouldn’t mind smelling like her!
Irresistible by Givenchy—for travel because it’s so tiny
If you look inside my makeup kit (or rather, makeup cabinet), you’ll find that most of it is comprised of foundation. Last year when I joined Binibining Pilipinas, I hadn’t discovered the wonders of taking zinc for my skin, so I had a lot to cover up. At the time, only Dra. Cecilia Faustino of MD Aesthetique could control my acne—miracle worker!!
Makeup Designory (MUD) Cream Foundation in YG1—for maximum coverage and TV-ready makeup (Makeup Designory is known as the Harvard of makeup schools, so this is the real deal as the makeup for makeup artists)
MUD Cream Foundation in YG3—for contouring
Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation in BE-1—to highlight my forehead, nose, and chin; a gift from Metro beauty ed, Charmagne Garcia-Laconico
MAC Studio in either NC30 or NC40—to set cream foundation
Mineralize Skinfinish—for highlighting after setting
MUD Dual Finish Pressed Mineral Powder in DFM1—to contour my jaw, cheekbones, and nose line. As Venus Raj once said, “Mawala na ang lahat, huwag lang ang nose line!”
Urban Decay De Slick—one of my ultimate beauty finds from Sephora. I can’t use primer every day because it will clog my pores and this controls my facial oil production and keeps my makeup from sliding around
Body Shop Extra Virgin Minerals SPF 30—for everyday makeup
Glotherapeutics Oil-Free SPF 40 Facial Sunscreen—it’s water-based so I mix it with Body Shop Extra Virgin Minerals when I want more sheer coverage. Glominerals and Glotherapeutics wasn’t available here in Manila, but I found them at glostoremd.com
Makeup Forever UV Prime SPF 50 Make-up Primer—for day, #sunscreenobsession (I actually wanted the primer from Becca with SPF 30, but it’s always sold-out in Adora )
Smashbox Photofinish Primer—for night
Of course, no self-respecting beauty queen (or beauty queen-wannabe) will be caught without a can of Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs. Ika-nga, “Alam mo namang ang hirap ma-achieve ang golden tan!” A spray-on tan can make you feel like a Victoria’s Secret Angel during the bikini portion of a pageant—even Rose Huntington-Whiteley has admitted that she won’t go down the VS runway in lingerie without an airbrush tan. If you can get it, MAC Face and Body is also a great alternative.
As a chinita, I usually leave the smoky eye looks to the professionals, like Gio Flores because he knows my face best and he always makes my complexion look more perfect than perfect.
Eye makeup palette by Lancome—for everyday makeup, I use the brown eye shadow from this palette
Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in brown or black—cheaper than Bobbi Brown and Makeup Forever; almost as effective (pwede na)
Shu Uemura eyelash curler—the Holy Grail of eyelash curlers
CoverGirl Lash Blast Volume Blasting Waterproof mascara—no raccoon eyes!
DUO eyelash glue—for falsies; I get my false eyelashes customized by Gio Flores
Shiseido Majolica Majorca Brow Customize Super Slim retractable eyebrow pencil—the thinnest eye brow pencil in the market; always sold-out in SM and Watson’s!!
Laura Mercier Brow Definer in Fair—to soften brow; also always sold-out in Rustan’s!!
MAC Brow Set in Girl Boy—eyebrows just look neater with this, although I plan to switch to Billion Dollar Brows in Blonde once Beauty Bar’s new shipment comes in because it’s also sold-out!!
My Cover Girl Lash Blast is about to run out, but thankfully, a good family friend gifted me with this tube of Fairydrops Mascara, a best-selling mascara in Japan and according to her, a perennially sold-out product in the US (why do I always discover the products that are never available?). I think it takes its name from its teardrop-shaped mascara brush.
Because I forgot to include these with the rest of my foundation products:
Glominerals Matte Liquid Foundation—a blessing for oily skin!
Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Skin Perfecting Makeup—for HD makeup, but provides little coverage (I wanted Makeup Forever HD Foundation in 123, but sold-out!! )
Shiseido Majolica Majorca Pressed Pore Cover—for quick touch-ups without making your foundation too thick
MUD Dual Finish Pressed Mineral Powder in DFL 2—it’s talc-free and frankly, healthier for your skin in comparison to MAC Studio Fix
A box of 250 oil blotting sheets from the 88-Peso Japanese store—sulit!
I’m not very adventurous when it comes to lipstick either, but here are the tubes that I use on regular rotation:
Revlon Color Burst Lip Butter in Lollipop (Shade 075)—also from Metro beauty ed, Charmagne; haven’t had the guts to try it yet, but love the color
Avon Ultra Moisture Rich in Mellow Magenta (shade D103)—my go-to pink for nighttime; super moisturizing, but the color doesn’t last long
Estee Lauder Pure Color Lasting Shimmer in Exotic Orchid (shade 65)—so I look buhay, according to Charmagne
Maybelline Totally Toffee (shade 215)—for everyday use, I usually mix with Estee Lauder Exotic Orchic
Chanel Rouge Allure in Velvet (shade 38)—the only red lipstick for me; does not budge
Guerlain Rouge in Georgia (shade 62)—my pa-cute-slash-pa-girl pink lipstick
Before applying lipstick, I always line my lips with MAC Subculture lip pencil to make sure lipstick doesn’t creep where it isn’t supposed to. I got this tube of Hourglass Prodigy lip gloss in Ingenue for free at the Sephora in ION, Singapore and I love it!
Maybelline Baby Baby Lips SPF 20— #sunscreenobsession
EOS lip balm—my lip care staple for the longest time; I’m having withdrawal symptoms because it’s not available here!
Body Shop lip and cheek stain—I use this more for my cheeks than I do for my lips when I want a natural makeup look
I’m also a fresh breath fanatic—I can’t stand the idea of talking to someone and all they can think about is my coffee breath or what I had for lunch! For this:
C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Shine –tastes like a peppermint candy cane
Fisherman’s Friend Sugar-Free mints—cheap and has never failed me
Ilog Maria Throat Spray—for days when my throat is itchy, it soothes it while keeping bad breath in check
I also keep the pre-packaged cotton buds from hotels—the packaging keeps the buds from loosening and they’re great to keep in your bag whenever you need to fix raccoon eyes, and overdrawn eyebrows and lips!
Your makeup is only as good as the tools you use to apply them. I’m not big on super expensive makeup brushes—as long as they do the trick, they’re good in my book.
Light fan brush by Kirkland—so my blush doesn’t go on too thick
I have a collection of foundation brushes by Suesh, Kirkland, Topshop, and The Face Shop—Suesh and Kirkland are my favorites and work the best
Mini-foundation brush by Bloom—a good size for correcting lipstick, eyebrow, and eyeshadow mistakes
MAC Duo Fiber Stippling Brush—the most versatile and irreplaceable in my collection; no other brush can give me flawless skin
Contour brush also by MAC
Basic powder brush by Elite Studio Makeup
Most of my eyebrow brushes are by MAC and Kirkland
Stiff eyebrow brush by Makeup Forever—nothing else compares
(My kuya is so cute — once he saw all my brushes laid out after being washed and he asked me if I took up painting! Yeah, painting, uh, my face. Haha)
Veteran beauty pageant pros (as in the ones who’ve been joining since their teens) can curl their hair with their eyes closed, but admittedly, this is something I struggle with. At first, I used Remington Style Ceramic Compact Hot Rollers (a good brand, but I can’t help but think Zombadings: Patayin sa Shokot si Remington whenever I see it), but the problem is that left on too long, they can make your hair super kinky.
In terms of hair irons, Babyliss would be the La Mer (or Rolls Royce, if you’re not a beauty fiend) of hair styling tools. I recently bought a Babyliss Pro hair iron and since I’m not good at curling, I iron a section of my hair and then wrap it around Velcro rollers—I need a lot because my hair is so thick; it pisses off the parloristas who blowdry my hair. I’ve also gotten used to sleeping in rollers—I just wrap my head in a silk scarf then doze off. In the morning, gorgeous shampoo commercial hair!
I have these baby hairs that obstruct my three-head (most people have a four-inch forehead; I only have three)—I hear Anne Curtis has the same problem, but she her forehead isn’t as small as mine. To keep them away from my face, I put a small amount of Jonathan Dirt Texturizing Paste than roll back the baby hairs with Velcro rollers.
Whew! That was a lot, obviously. Confession: I left out more than half of the products in my makeup, hair, and skincare kit—what I included here really are the “bare essentials” for the beauty queen kikay kit. So the next time you watch a beauty pageant on television—or any televised production or photo shoot, for that matter—remember that a lot of time and product goes into achieving that look. However, if you want to (and you’re patient), you too can learn how get the look yourself—you don’t always need a pro to do it for you.
as told to divasoria