Pink Friday at Manila

I never appreciated rap until Nicki Minaj came in the music scene. The feminine attack on a male-dominated genre, the slightly-toned-down sex imagery which is often strong with other female rappers, the fantasies and chants coming from fast but great music – all of these created the PINK dimension of the rap. So when I heard that Nicki Minaj is coming to Manila, I didn’t hesitate to watch and see her perform live!

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It was indeed a PINK day! I wore my pink wig from Catwalk Cosmetics, that Maybelline Color Sensational lipstick in Fuchsia and I’m Mikki Minaj! Good thing other people saw that too! While there were seats already in the mosh pit area at SM MOA Arena, I stood up and and danced with that super bass – figuratively and literally as I was very near the speakers!! Nonetheless, I was able to get good pictures also, thanks to Canon S100!

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As for the performance, she opened the event with the below costume and Nicki was really pretty and colorful! There was also a DJ who played the less familiar songs from her albums while she’s changing costumes.

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Her dancers were great performers and they kept the pink spirit alive! And yes, they were almost naked the whole time!!

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The fearless Nicki, didn’t just dance well, but also sing with heart. That pink and shimmering microphone allowed us to witness her great voice despite the kind of genre she’s into.

Speaking of great music, after performing a lot of upbeat ones from Pink Friday, she sang “Fire Burns” – the one you’re hearing now – and introduced her new album, “Roman Reloaded” which houses this song. Before singing this, she asked the audience, “Have you ever had your heart broken? I had my heart broken once and I wanted to kill him. He deserved it.” This was revealing indeed, but if we get deeper into all her songs, actually, this shouldn’t be a surprise.

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Then I kinda felt that something deeper and beyond reality that lived inside a Nicki Minaj. According to Wikipedia, indeed, “while growing up, Minaj’s home life was often chaotic, with her parents constantly fighting. As a means of escape, she would create characters and live her life through them. In an interview with New York she stated, ‘To get away from all their fighting, I would imagine being a new person. ‘Cookie’ was my first identity – that stayed with me for a while. I went on to ‘Harajuku Barbie,’ then ‘Nicki Minaj’. Fantasy was my reality’ ” (http://nymag.com/guides/summer/2010/66786/)

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As for me, her fantasies – pink friday, roman reloaded – actually influenced me in a way that it has helped me or maybe you, through music like “Last Chance” and “Fly”, create fantasies as well, that help us in trying to solve the realities that we face everyday. And thanks Nicki Minaj for that!

Then she performed more and made us witness great fantasies before she left. She sang the more famous songs like “Super Bass”, “Starships”, etc with the blue wig, her signature facial expressions and look.

Moreover, before she left, she invited some teens and girls to dance with her. And she really loved the little girls! According to Wikipedia, “in an interview with Interview, Minaj commented on her sexual image again stating, “I made a conscious decision to try to tone down the sexiness, I want people—especially young girls—to know that in life, nothing is going to be based on sex appeal. You’ve got to have something else to go with that.” And she was able to show that.

Lastly, one reason that I would like to believe on the rationale behind a PINK Friday, and maybe a Nicki Minaj, is her different approach on rap which obviously touched millions of people around the world, including the Philippines. According to her, “I think the world is getting more gay-friendly, so hip-hop is too. But it’s harder to imagine an openly gay male rapper being embraced, people view gay men as having no street credibility. But I think we’ll see one in my lifetime.”(http://www.details.com/celebrities-entertainment/music-and-books/201005/hip-hop-artist-nicki-minaj)

Thanks Nicki for the Pink and Roman inspiration, and I hope you continue producing fantasies for everyone who wants (or doesnt want) to listen to you. Thank you Saab Magalona and Martin for letting me really hear Nicki.

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Cosmopolitan Bachelor Bash 2012

For one night, every beks, sis or pamhin were the ones who were watching. Thanks so much Cosmopolitan, Antonov, and to my friends who let me watch this show! Below are more photos of the event.

Anyway, also, did you know that last Wednesday, it was the 15th year of Cosmopolitan Philippines’ Bachelor Bash? As such, their long time bachelors have also joined the stage and it was a treat to the loyal Cosmo Fearless Females (and girls at heart) to see John Hall, for example! 😉

John James Uy

John James Uy

Sam Adjani

Sam Adjani

Cosmopolitan Bachelor Bash 2012

Hideo Muraoka

Hideo Muraoka

Ian Batherson

Ian Batherson

Walter Demesa

Walter Demesa

Semerad

Semerad

Tom Rodriguez

Tom Rodriguez

James Blanco

James Blanco

The Stage

Walter Demesa

Walter Demesa

Anton Del Rosario

Anton Del Rosario

John Hall

John Hall

Vince Ferraren

Vince Ferraren

Aaron Villaflor

Aaron Villaflor

Daniel Matsunaga

Daniel Matsunaga

Daniel Matsunaga

Daniel Matsunaga

Miguel Lasala

Miguel Lasala

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I’m Born This Way, Manila

“I’ve had enough, this is my prayer. That I’ll die livin’ just as free as my hair.” (Hair) Contrary to what Filipinos think, Lady Gaga has a god. And as she told us yesterday: “she wants the best for all of us”. I don’t believe that an artist and a woman like Lady Gaga  workships the devil.

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So I attended the concert with this look. I was in the mosh pit area and people called me a lot of things but I didn’t care and I was as free as my hair, and my makeup at that moment.

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As for the show, despite all the political and religious protests that arose because this ball/tour, Lady Gaga as an artist showed especially yesterday, what she stood for: “a big giant statement of art liberation” every element of which further touched every part of her little monsters, every fabric of my identity.

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First, the stage! It was truly frightening but glamorous. It was like a haunted house, but only that beautiful creatures lived on it. And I guess that’s the point of art: to make you scared at first and realize how beautiful and different it is at the end!

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Of course, our Mother Monster in her Gaga clothes, makeup, music and performance! My goosebumps didn’t go away for 2 hours! This was truly beyond fashion, a song and a concert. While taking pictures using my left hand, i did put my paws up using the other during this part (that was difficult, but yes!!)

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Her sleeves were enormous! And looked like a Filipiniana indeed with all the holes or windows.

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This specific performance was very artistic and sentimental! She sang Hair and and I couldn’t forget this because this was when I really cried. I know right? But for people like us, who wouldn’t?

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But most importanly, her speech moved me! Quoting Lady Gaga, “And to those of you that don’t feel free, take the best opportunity to free yourselves. I just feel like, you know, so many people have been protesting and it really doesn’t bother me truly because I know that there has to be change, but for all those kids all over the world that take their lives when they’re so young because they feel bullied or they’re afraid because they’re gay and they don’t want to tell anybody, don’t you think that some of us should stand up and say the godd**mn truth? It’s true. It’s not about the music, it’s not about, it’s not about anything, it’s not about my clothes, it’s not about having a hit record, it’s the fucking goddamn truth that people in the world need to be free of who they are and be proud and feel valuable no matter where they are.” (MTV)

Below was when she said “hi” to me with her monster fingers, and smiled. I was close to tears!!! (felt like I can die already haha)

And yes, she could fight like that! And she won last night. Furthermore, her dancers were far from ordinary.You may call them of deviant color, or gender but they comprised the whole thesis statement of acceptance, of not being afraid of who you are and of doing what you want to do no matter what.

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The guy above is a Filipino! Gaga introduced her to the audience and looked too proud of him. She kept saying how she loved Filipinos, and Filipino gays, and gays in general. Thing is, her music went beyond pop and served as statements representing the “underdogs” of the society, the ones bullied, looked down upon. And as they say, that makes an art, truly art, with purpose and meaning.

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Gaga said, “It’s in uniqueness that we are all the same”. True enough, through Lady Gaga’s spell, we were all equal in that arena. People didn’t mind “crazy” monster dancing, excessive makeup…or people who dressed up like I did. And well, that’s because we were born this way.
Truly one of the best days of my life! I just thank God for Gaga.

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Estee Beauty Signature Techniques

When I was a kid, I would always see mom glorifying lots of Estee Lauder products – from those beige-colored jars for her eyes to the dark blue compacts of foundation. Then I grew up and realized that those cosmetics still stayed in her cabinet (even those that are emptied already!)

So when Estee Lauder Philippines invited me to this event, I told myself: this is the chance to finally reveal to myself mom’s secret for years! 😉 I attended the event at Rustan’s Shangrila where the new Estee counter was built. The feel’s very classy, accommodating and professional with Estee’s signature blue color.

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More importantly, the brand demonstrated the different signature makeup techniques that can be availed in their counter. Maybe this was one of mom’s secrets which I already knew because of this event.

1. SKIN CARE HELPS MAKEUP. Brand Coordinator Liz and Estee makeup artist started by asserting that products for skin are essential for makeup. Based on the Estee way, I would like to believe that these products enhance the capabilities of makeup to finally transform or treat problem areas while you have them on your face. In the signature Estee Lauder “5-Step Face” technique below you can see that Step 1 is preparing skin either/both with repair and moisture. Step 3 illustrates skin care for the eyes. The Night Eye Serum automatically fixes the fatigue under the eyes (read: the lines and puffiness) and the concealer fixes the dark circles. Stay tuned for my review of this ‘Fatigue Fighter” technique and the Double Wear concealer! Never did I imagine combining the specific powers of skin care and makeup on the spot. Thanks Estee for this great insight.

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2. RIGHT FOUNDATION & THE RIGHT WAY. Estee has an expert system that eliminates the guesswork to find the perfect foundation shade the first time. Estee’s makeup artist in Rustan’s demonstrated this to Julia, beauty blogger of Bless My Bag.The system uses three things: (1) Intensity; (2) Undertone and (3) Formula. Intensity is how dark and light you are. Before, this was my only basis in determining the right shade and realized that even if I found the right “light” or “fair” foundation for me, some were too pink or yellowish on my skin. But my discovery of makeup led to the understanding of undertones. As I’ve discussed before in lipsticks, your undertone (warm, cool or neutral) determines if the color will look or fit right on you. See the video below to further explain this.

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With my experience, there is really no perfect way of determining the right foundation for you unless you really apply it on your face. But Estee devised a great, systematic and easy way to determine this on the first sight. Nonetheless, as Estee did, applying it still on your face would verify if the color hypothesis is right on you.

Moreover, if you noticed the Step 2 of the “5-Step Face”, Estee recommends applying foundation first where there is most redness,  usually the center of the face. this center is called the center of the flower; while the remaining parts of the faces are “petals”.  (Photo: lushangel.com)I think the purpose is to concentrate on a part that needs most coverage than the others, to look natural and not too made up.

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Thank you Estee Lauder for allowing us to see these professional but easy-to-do techniques to perfect make up application. It was also fun to see Estee’s new products that looks very cute and colorful!

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