Saturday, 31 October 2015

Mia's Review: Andong Zzimdak [Media Tasting]


Thanks to OYHZ, the bloggers gathered again for another media tasting, this time at the newly opened Korean braised chicken restaurant, Andong Zzimdak, brought in all the way from Korea. If you've visited Myeongdong in Seoul, you might have came across the restaurant there, too. 

A shot of the crazy queue just to show off how popular Andong Zzimdak is on a Friday night. They even had to stop the queue at just 8 plus because they're almost out of chicken. 

The restaurant is pretty small and cozy, and would be perfect for a small gathering of friends to enjoy some yummy braised chicken. 

As the name of the restaurant suggest, this place is famous for their Andong Jjimdak, which literally translate into steamed chicken of Andong, for jjim means steamed or braised and dak means chicken in Korean.
The name Andong Jjimdak came about as the dish originated in the city of Andong, Gyeongsangbuk-do Province and is made with chicken and various vegetables (such as potatoes and carrots) marinated in a ganjang (Korean soy sauce) based sauce. It is usually served spicy but Andong Zzimdak has toned down the spiciness and 'localised' the flavour a little to better suit a Singaporean's taste buds.

Hot Citron Tea - $2.50

If you're dining at a Korean restaurant, it definitely has to be either criton tea or barley tea, right? And I'm definitely team citron. Very reasonably priced at just $2.50 for a standard mug sized, the tea wasn't overly sweet or thick but brewed just nice with the right amount of yuzu peel bits for those who loves to munch of them. 



And there was so much food for 6 of us, I can't even....

Chicken Karaage - $9.90

Well, who says you can't make yummy fried chicken when you're supposed to be selling jjimdak? These fried chicken bites, although a little 'off' because they're Japanese (karaage, yeah?), were still worth my tummy space. Fragrant with a slight savoury taste, the battered skin was fried still crisp while the insides still tender. How can one possibly resist a piece of piping hot, boneless fried chicken? 

 Spicy Dokboki - $9.90


Although the tteok wasn't the softest and chewiest I can find, it was still quite enjoyable as the gravy was indeed spicy enough, as compared to some other places which serve the gravy sweet. It would be perfect if the tteok was cooked softer, which I reckon can be done easily by just leaving it to cook for just a tad longer before serving. 

Mini Seafood Pancake - $9.90


Chewy and packed full of seafood (I tasted shrimps and squids), I like how it comes in very manageable (almost) bite size and each bite gives you as much seafood as the pancake batter itself. 


Boneless Jjimdak (Large) - $59.90 [Medium at $49.90]

Even though there is a chili icon next to the dish (as compared to 3 chili for Mayak Jjimdak, the supposedly spicy one) and there's this huge piece of red chili staring at you in the picture, I find this not spicy at all, just a comfortable savoury braised flavour. Will definitely return to try the Mayak Jjimdak another day. 
The chicken bits are served boneless with skin and pretty tender and well braised. My first try of the glass noodles was an NG as it wasn't well mixed in the gravy, hence extremely chewy, like rubber. After mixing it well into the gravy and giving it ample time to soak up the moisture (and flavour) of the gravy, it became so much softer while still retaining its QQ (chewy) texture. 
So a small note to everyone, remember to mix the glass noodles into the gravy before you eat them! 

Seafood Jjimdak (Medium) - $52.90 [Large at $65.90]


Similar to the boneless jjimdak but with prawns, mussles, squids and boney chicken parts. I find that the chicken in this jjimdak is significantly less tender than those in the boneless chicken, most probably due to the chicken parts. The mussels (my favourite shellfish), though on the small side, were still pretty fresh and chewy. The prawns were also pretty big and fresh, but peeling them when they're drenched in gravy is really not something enjoyable and nobody went for them until M took it upon himself to peel all the prawns for us. 
Thanks, M! :)


And the night ended with us trying to decipher what's Andong Zzimdak's logo all about, thanks to M who threw the question at the table. Somehow the answer we got became "Chicken God" as you can obviously see the Korean letter for God (Shin) in the middle of the logo and in the background I can vaguely see a chicken head... Two, in fact, for there's a mirror image. But of course, that's just mere guesses. 
If you know what exactly the logo is about, do let me know in the comment box below. 

Andong Zzimdak is located at Raffles City Shopping Centre, B1.
For more information, visit their FB page HERE

Till then,
Mia Foo



Sunday, 25 October 2015

Bulgarian Rose Karlovo Tea Party at Muffet's Room Cafe

I first visited Muffet's Room a couple months back, after a long tiring day of work at the nearby new condominium, and recently I'm back again for a cozy afternoon tea party hosted by Bulgarian Rose Karlovo. 



The Bulgarian Rose factory was founded in 1948 on the basis of distilleries for processing essential oil raw materials, which existed in the valley of Karlovo (hence the name Bulgarian Rose Karlovo). It has been supplying raw materials to varies international companies for cosmetic purchases. Bulgarian Rose Karlovo was finally started in 2000 to produce its own cosmetic line. 
Bulgarian Rose Karlovo's line of products do not just use any species of rose, but only Rose Damascena, of which 70% of this species are found in Bulgaria. They only flower in May-June and all flowers have to be handpicked in the morning to preserve the volatile oils. 



Other than facial skin care, Bulgarian Rose Karlovo also carries body care and hair care products to get us smelling like roses from head to toe. 



From body butter, to facial toner/water, to soap loofah....

And even bath bombs! 
But well, these aren't available locally yet, but let's all start hoping that they will eventually reach SG's land soon enough. 

While getting fed with all the yummy food from Muffet's Room and learning more about how Bulgarian Rose Karlovo came about, we were also given the chance to try out a lot of their awesome products, which smells really good!


My favourite of the lot from the tea party has to be this Rose Exfoliating Facial Mask. The exfoliating beads feel really gentle on the skin and it smells so good! You may think that being called Bulgarian Rose Karlovo, all their products should just smell like rose, but there's still a difference of scent between different products and this smells so addictively yummy. 


Thanks to their generosity, I was given a few babies to try out! Apart from the washing gel for face and the hair care liquid disperse crystals in the goodie bag, I was also given a full sized bottle of the Signature Rose Water to try out, of which I shall have a separate post for that. 


I was so glad to find out that the washing gel smells really similar to the facial scrub! It cleanses really gently and leaves my skin feeling soft and smooth without the squeaky-glass like feeling.


This lady's joy hair care liquid disperse crystals aren't available locally yet, but they soon will be! *hint hint* 
I really like this, apart from the awesome scent, is that it feels extremely light and is to be used on dry hair for some instant smoothing effect and shine. Other than making your hair smells like heaven, it also protect the hair from UV damage and humidity effect, and also prevents the most hated split ends by nourishing and strengthening our hair. 

Bulgarian Rose Karlovo is currently available at Skin SocietyLazada and Sasa Clementi. 
For more information, do visit their website or facebook

Till then,
Mia Foo

Monday, 19 October 2015

Slimming at Beyond Beauty: RF Fat Burner


Previously, I've talked about my experience with Ionto & Hot Blanket at Beyond Beauty and after more than 1 month of treatment, I've finally moved on to the next form of treatment, the RF fat burner, to further melt away my stubborn fats.

RF, which stands for Radio Frequency, promotes natural fat combustion to Free Fatty Acid (FFA) through a process called liquefaction. Rf provides a consistent and effective heating for fat underneath the skin, accelerating the cell metabolism while liquefying fat cells of targeted part of the body. The FFA are then removed from the body via the lymphatic system, giving rise to an effective slimming results. In addition, RF also stimulates the fibrous cords, stretching them to provide a tighter and smoother appearance, effectively reducing cellulite appearances.

To sum it up, the effects of RF includes:
1. Improves tissue functions (cell regeneration)
2. Accelerates cell metabolism
3. Breaks down stubborn fats
4. Improves natural healing
5. Facilitates blood and lymph circulation
6. Promotes natural fat liquefaction

You may expect the following results from a RF treatment:
1. Increased skin's firmness
2. Effective cellulite reduction
3. Rapid inch loss
4. Relief muscle tension

So after the usual routine of changing out of my apparel, taking my weight and settling down onto the treatment bed, the therapist pushed in this complicated looking RF machine. 


I'll say the RF tool (I'm tempted to call it a hammer) is pretty small but the overall experience was nothing less than comfortable. With different intensity, the tool will generate different levels of heat and the therapist will use the heated tool to massage your area of concern thoroughly for 20 minutes. Having done both my tummy and thighs, I'll say I enjoyed the treatment at my tummy a lot more. The heat from the tool felt really nice and the massaging motion was really comfortable. The tummy session was then ended with a relaxing hot mask that helps to further burn fat and tighten the skin. 

Even though this set of treatment doesn't give an immediate weight loss like the Ionto+Hot Blanket treatment, I would still very much prefer the RF treatment because the whole session just felt like a relaxing massage and I could feel that the treated area (especially my flabby tummy) felt somewhat 'tighter' just after that 20 minutes. 

For more information on Beyond Beauty's slimming treatments, visit their website HERE or visit one of their outlets for a detailed consultation. 

Till then,
Mia Foo

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Eu Yan Sang TCM Health Report [Advertorial]


I remember my first visit to the TCM was when I was still in kindergarten and ever since then, I've been a true believer in TCM, especially for some of my health issues like migraines, gastric pains and constipation. 
So when I heard that EYS has launched a new health service, a TCM health report, I was really excited to be able to try out the service! 

The trip to EYS TCM Wellness Clinic @ Marina Bay Link Mall was a little of a challenge as I didn't remember stepping into this mall before (actually I did walk through the mall once when I headed to The Sail, but it just didn't register in my memory) and I got lost for just a little bit as I was looking intently for their unit number and found myself coming to a dead end at the shenton medical. So to preempt all who's planning to visit this branch, turn in at Salad Stop instead of following the increasing unit numbers to the dead end. :)

Eu Yan Sang TCM Wellness clinics focus on preventive health, or sub-health issues, which refers to conditions that have no yet developed into an illness yet. 
So basically, its Healthy -- Sub-Health -- Disease
Many people who are in the sub-health stage do not realise the symptoms or choose to overlook, allowing diseases to develop when they had ample chance to stem it from the root. 

To know more about sub-health, do take a look at this video.

This heath report service comprises of the following:
1. Diagnosis by physician
2. Your dominant body constitution determined
3. Wellness tips suitable for your particular body constitution advised by the physician

And you'll get to bring home all the useful information in a form of a report in a folder like this. 

I was attended to by Physician Lim Sock Ling, a pretty and bubbly young lady, who used a combination of diagnostic methods including looking, listening, smelling, inquiry and taking pulses to diagnose my condition as yin-deficient. 
Symptoms of yin-deficiency includes (citing my own examples) frequent headaches, constipation, and insomnia. 


Yes, I would love to believe that's the case, but unfortunately not. Although I do not suffer from disrupted sleep, I really have a hard time falling asleep as there's so much random thoughts going on in my mind once the lights are off. Apparently, this is caused by too much yang-fire in my heart system, making me unable to calm down and take a good rest. 

Unlike those western medical report, this TCM health report gives a general outlook of your current body constitution and typical (possible) health issues (or sub-health problems) that you might face, or may already be facing and overlooked. Wellness tips provided in the report includes not only recommended special dietary intake but also what kind of exercises to do and what acupoints to massage. Basically, it gives you a suggestion on how to change your current lifestyle into a healthier one that suits your body constitution. 

And like western medical report, this health report gives you only a current state of health. As you all know, our body should ideally be in a balanced state and any imbalance will result in sub-health issues, which is what this report will catch on. And if you diligently act on the wellness tips provided in the report and change your lifestyle to better suit your current body constitution, your once imbalanced constitution shall slowly improve to a balanced state, and this report may then become 'outdated' in a sense that it does not reflect your body constitution anymore. This is why health check up should be done periodically, and likewise for this TCM health report.  

Get your own TCM Health Report at Eu Yan Sang.
Simply call the clinic to make an appointment and quote "My TCM Health Report" to enjoy Health Report service at $38 (Usual price: $48), until 31 Dec 2015.
 http://euyansangclinic.com/services/other-services/tcm-health-report

For more information, visit http://euyansangclinic.com/clinic

Till then,
Mia Foo

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

V-Mina: Feel the Confidence [Advertorial]

-credits to idiva.com-

All women should be concerned about their vaginal health. A healthy vagina is naturally acidic with beneficial bacteria to fend off pesky infections. It'll also secrete small amounts of discharge to keep itself clean. Any interference with these normal conditions, and you may face vaginal irritation or infection. 
Although our vagina are supposed to be self-cleansing, we will still need to keep our vulva (the exterior) clean and cleaning with just water is not enough. It needs to be washed and cleansed thoroughly. Without proper care and hygiene, the smegma (a combination of shed skin cells, skin oils, and moisture) will collect under the hood that covers the clitoris and the glands of the clitoris, which can give rise to pain, irritation and/or inability to experience orgasm. 
The importance of proper vaginal pH and vaginal flora in maintaining a well-balanced vaginal ecosystem is vital for a healthy V-area. And so, having quality feminine hygiene products with the right pH that are devoid of chemical deodorants or antibiotic substances is important. 
There's currently so many feminine hygiene products out in the market but do you know that many commercial products contain synhetic materials such as SLES, SL/ALS, chlorine and so on, all of which can be extremely disruptive and harmful to health. 
Just giving a very important tip when purchasing commercial products, READ YOUR INGREDIENT LIST!



Introducing V-Mina, with a range of feminine hygiene products that includes:
1. Cleansing Mousse
2. Lightening Intimate Gel
3. Deodorant Intimate Mist
4. Cleansing Wipes

V-Mina is the first feminine hygiene product in Singapore clinically tested and proven to improve good micro-flora balance. It gives valuable benefits not only to healthy individuals who appreciate delicate care for their well-being, also to those who are prone to infections despite having done their regular cleansing. They have been clinically formulated to match the normal pH (4.0) of the external vaginal area, allowing thorough daily cleansing without the risk of dryness and irritation. V-Mina’s range of products come with yogurt extracts with probiotics too, with a key purpose of improving good micro-flora balance. If you didn't know, a popular home diy natural cure for yeast infections is to apply yogurt (all natural and non-sweetened, of course!) but it tends to get extremely messy. It's also formulated with tea tree as a natural and soothing disinfectant, and aloe vera to moisturise and soften the skin. 

In a nutshell, here are the Clinically Tested & Proven Benefits of V-Mina:
1. Improve good micro-flora balance
2. Natural anti-microbial
3. Facilitate healthy pH level (pH 4)
4. Non-irritation, safe for daily use

I'm personally very prone to yeast infection (well, what to do? my main diet is sugar) and so, a good set of feminine hygiene products is very important for my v-health.
I especially love how the cleanser comes in mousse form, which saves us the time (regardless how short it is) of lathering up the soapy foam to cleanse our v-area. The cleansing wipes is also a must have, and is especially useful to carry around in our bags to keep ourselves clean at all times during our periods, while the deodorant mist is like a bonus to sweeten up the deal when you need to further freshen up and keep some unwanted smell at bay.
I've not yet tried out the lightening gel, so I can't give much review on that product yet. And seriously I wouldn't really know (or bother to check) if it'll really work well anyway. *awkward laugh*

For more information & purchase of V-Mina products, do visit their website www.vmina.sg or www.galenium.sg

Till then,
Mia Foo

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Battle of the PADS


Heh, I've been planning to do a this post for.... so long! But somehow I just allowed 101 other posts to overtake this plan and so, here it is finally. 
Sorry, foodie-guys, this is going to be a ladies-only post. 

The prices of these pads are... well, about the same so I won't be comparing them base on their prices. Okay, I admit. I can't remember their exact prices. Heh! 
So now, let's start off the list with the one of the pad I absolutely love right now. 



Name & Variant: Kotex Luxe and Kotex Soft & Smooth
Comfort: 4.5/5
Absorbency: 4.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 4.5/5

Previously, Kotex was never ever on my radar but ever since their (very sucessful) revamp, they've officially clinched my favourite pad spot. Made ultra thin, but with a 'curvy' surface, it gives a way better fit to our body to prevent having the pad bunching up, which results in leaks. You'll be happy to know that the overnight pads go up to 38cm long, which should be sufficient to prevent back leaks even though it's not the longest night pad available in the market. Even though Soft & Smooth variant is supposed to be softer and smoother than Luxe, I actually do not feel that much of a difference between both variants during usage. Both variants also have equally high absorbency rates so it really doesn't matter which variant you chose. They're equally good.


Name & Variant: Laurier Super Slimguard
Comfort: 3/5
Absorbency: 4.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 3/5

Okay, so it claims to be the number 1, thinnest pad in the market with the maximum (which reads best?) absorbency in 1mm. I have to admit, this was my favourite pad in the market until Kotex revamped themselves sucessfully. What made me really disappointed in them was that instead of improving themselves when Kotex started 'challenging' their number 1 position, Laurier just started a bloggers' campaign to tell how brand x (which was obviously Kotex) is just not comparable to them. Having tried both pads, I know those points of focus were either bullsh*t or they really didn't matter much. That's when Laurier Super Slimguard totally disappeared from the pad section in my wardrobe. 

Name & Variant: Stayfree Ultra Thin 
Comfort: 3.5/5
Absorbency: 2.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 2.5/5

I believe this brand of sanitary pad is not part of the popular clique in the market, and their quality and efficacy is really average but I've repurchased this for quite some time as they come in 25cm length as compared to the usual 24cm offered by most other brands.


Name & Variant: Sofy Comfort Nite & Chao Shou Shui 
Comfort: 4/5
Absorbency: 3.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 4/5

With their overnight pads ranging from 35cm to 42cm, Sofy still tops the list of the longest overnight pads available in the market. Even though Sofy doesn't provide the quick absorbency rate of Kotex, they're still one of my favourite overnight pads (be it Comfort Night or Chao Shou Shui) because it's really quite impossible to experience overnight leakages when the pad itself (the 41 and 42cm) extends beyond your undies. And with all the fanciful side gathers and extended back wings/flaps that made this almost like an adult diaper, you'll need some hardcore sleep-tumbling skills in order to get overnight leakages. 


Name & Variant: Sofy Compact
Comfort: 3.5/5
Absorbency: 2.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 3/5

Frankly speaking, I've just started trying this variant of Sofy's day pad, attracted not to the pink packaging, but by how small and compact these 24cm long day pads are. Made to less than half the width of a typical pad packaging, you can easily stuff this anywhere. Front pockets, back pockets, purse, pouch, or even clutch it in your hands.... Okay, maybe not that.
These pads are made almost paper thin with a thicken section in the middle for better fit. Although they're not that fantastic in terms of comfort and absorbency, the high level of convenience due to such small and compact packaging makes this a highly possible repurchase. 

Name & Variant: Adore Comfort All Days
Comfort: 4/5
Absorbency: 2.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 3.5/5

Kudos to Adore for coming up with such a weekend-getaway friendly packaging. In just 1 small packet, you'll get day pads, overnight pads, and light days pads. Although not scoring very well in the absorbency factor, Adore has some awesome odour control properties, keeping the dreaded "menstrual blood stench" at bay for hours with an extremely soft and smooth pad surface for better comfort. However, the pad's wings could have been better engineered to do its job properly instead of contributing to side leaks. Personally, I'll choose to stick away those flaps onto the back of the pad itself than to secure them the right way.
And due to the anti-bacterial and amazing odour control properties, Adore will make the best choice as a light days pad where absorbency is not much of a governing factor but comfort and odour is always an issue.
Name & Variant: Whisper Ultra
Comfort: 2/5
Absorbency: 3/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 2/5

When I was young and just started out using sanitary pads, Whisper used to be THE pad to have. Perhaps it was due to a higher price tag compared to the rest available in the market during those days, which gave a "high-class" feeling. But now having tried so many brands, Whisper is definitely the brand I'll not choose to use, mainly due to the dry netted surface, which is really uncomfortable on our skin. There also a couple of times when it gave me diaper sanitary pad rash when the weather was a little too hot. 
Name & Variant: UU Care Anti-Bacterial & Cool Techology
Comfort: 4/5
Absorbency: 2.5/5 
Overall Personal Likability: 3.5/5

With the anti-bacterial variant really similar to Adore, I shall touch on the Cool Technology variant. And let me tell you, it's really cooling for the first few minutes of wearing it. However, the magic loses its touch too soon and it's reduced to just a very soft and comfortable pad. 
The softness of the pad also contributed to its downfall as the ends of the pad is prone to tearing if you didn't peel it off at the correct angle. I also came to notice, on couple of occasions of heavy flow, that these UU care pads tend to give you under-leaking issue. Yes, not back leaks, not side leaks, but under leaks, meaning it leaked from the underside of the pads at the front tips where there's no adhesive material. Kind of weird, but that's what happened. 

So this concludes my humble list of sanitary pads - yes or no. Feel free to share your favourite brand and variant with me in the comment box below.

Till then,
Mia Foo
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