Tokyo // Tokyo Disneyland

Nothing says save the best for the last like Tokyo Disneyland at the very end of our itinerary. What a great idea it was! That is a fact until we realized a lesson we learned from our Universal Studios experience: Asian theme park queues are always long! But this is Disneyland we were talking about, and beside it is like, Disney Sea, so what’s the fuss? Well either way I was still stoked, because this is the third Disneyland I visited! (Previous two were in Hong Kong and Anaheim.)

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Tokyo // The Holy Tokyo Trinity

After a few days, we finally made it to Tokyo! Stepping foot in the capital prefecture. But at the same time, I felt like I was finally feeling the hype around it. It’s one thing to look envy Japan photos on Instagram. It’s another to walk the crossing, see Mario Karts in your commute, and see Piko Taro as a face mask. So, we explored the holy Tokyo trinity: Shinjuku, Harajuku, and Shibuya.

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What I Wore: Japan 2016 OOTDs // 2016

First things first, I ain’t a fashion blogger (for now). But I still like dressing up, especially when I travel! There are many good reasons on what we pack matters. First, you never know who you might run into. Then, nothing is more jarring than seeing a beautiful Instagram feed with a poorly matched outfit. Also, you need to impress the locals or else they might make your outfit a meme on Reddit. But most importantly, dressing up nicely is an act of self love and that’s what we all need. So that’s why I made sure my Japan 2016 OOTDs is dabomb.com.org.net.ph.jp.

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Kyoto // Vintage Japan

Half of our day in Kyoto is spent wandering around holy grounds. The other half was spent in the “little town” life, where we get a taste of vintage Japan.

The entire nation of Japan is well known for its nationalism. But it is at Kyoto where we feel the Japanese spirit truly shines in. After all, it was the old capital of Japan, so for hundreds of years a lot of the cultural nuances we see with them now are from here.

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Kyoto // Temple Grove

Kyoto was the capital of Japan. It remained that way under the shogun rule until the power returned to the emperor and they moved the capital to Edo–now Tokyo.  To me, it sounds funny because the Japanese were probably wondering what to name their new capital… And they totally decided to invert the two syllables. Creative, but catchy.  (¬‿¬ )

Going to Kyoto from Osaka took a few hours. Luckily our hotel was right across the train station, so traveling to get our stuff was a breeze. Our Kyoto walk took us only an entire day though. We only explored  Arashiyama and Gion District, so that was enough before we left for Tokyo.

We had a very holy morning. Our itinerary consisted of temples, and a long, long walk towards nothing but bamboos. But Kyoto always holds a special place in my memories, because it’s where I experienced my first snowfall! The snow was pretty mild, but my tropical ass was stoked to have tiny flakes on my jacket. The only regret I ever had was not purchasing a basic lens filter to protect my lens… And the snow permanently got stuck on my lens :<). But otherwise, my first winter experience was surreal!

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Japan 2016 Makeup Look

It’s been a while! I understand that I have been MIA for some time. Lately a lot of things went on with me, and I had to focus on them first. But this is something I’ve always wanted to show to you guys: my Japan 2016 makeup look!

A Little Intro

The Igari makeup inspired my look for this trip. Japanese stylist Igari Shinobu created this blush-centric look and it grew popular in Japan. Instead of placing it on the cheeks, however, the blush is under the eyes. It leaves a hungover / sickly touch, thus having others call it “hungover” makeup. Simply put, my friend called it “drunk blush”. Since I tried this look, I found it looks super good on me. It’s become my “usual look” since then!

Take note that there are a lot of non-Japanese products here as well. I used a lot of the products here for quite a while. I believe you don’t have to use a country’s products if you want to go for their beauty standard. But it does help to achieve the “feel” of the makeup look. Hence, that’s why I did a beauty haul back there. (Apart from the price difference from PH, of course.)

So I’m doing this tutorial step by step. I broke down the images into steps and identified each product per step.

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Osaka // Namba & Umeda

2016  // 12 // 26

Have you ever been so excited but your momentum was just drained? Excitement’s good. But remember to recharge! I learned the hard way when I traveled to the Osaka Castle. Travel bloggers always tell you how important it is to charge your gadgets, but looks like I forgot to do so! Luckily, my phone was always on high battery, so I still got some good photos that day.

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Osaka // Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum

2016 // 12 // 26

Only 5 hours of sleep on Christmas night. No wonder Sofia Coppola made a movie about this country with the word “lost” in the title. I understood that clearly after just our first day. But honestly, in a country like this, I wouldn’t entirely mind. Maybe it’s because I had a basic grasp of the language–enough to get around with basic social interactions. Or probably because of how disciplined they are as a whole, and how safe I felt here.

And on the 26th, the vacation formally begins.

After our grooming rituals, our travel group went down to McDonald’s for breakfast. Strangely, that Makku (what they call it in Japan) had no English menu. That was weird, but okay. Like what I did with the ramen place in Dotonbori, I chose whatever looked like an Egg McMuffin. Turns out, it was bacon and egg. Not bad.

When we were done, we walked out only for the rain to greet us. The area wasn’t covered, so some spots had rain pouring. Good news: I brought an umbrella in my luggage. Bad news: I, a genius, left it in my hotel room. I knew it would rain during our trip, but didn’t know it was that day. I still marched on in my coat, beret, and Doc Martens.

Rainy days dampen the motivation of photographers. But when you’re in Japan, FFS, forget about that. I thought of it as a challenge. Hues change according to weather and time of the day. What is ugly at day is likely beautiful at night. Or what seems meh under the sun stands out in the gloom.

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Osaka // Dotonbori

2016 // 12 // 25

After months of waiting, the day came.

I spent hours on JapanesePod101.com learning the basics. Even a lazy ass like mine learned how to read hiragana and katakana within the ber months. If idle time at work existed, I spent it on Googling everything related to Japan. There were sites dedicated to the country’s quirks that baffled foreigners. Only Japan can be a fascinating, beautiful, and weird country all at once. Anyone I knew who’s been there always talk about how the country is heaven on earth.

Of course I was excited. My parents went there three years ago and went back home with tons of praise. Now, it’s my turn to experience Japan’s beauty. For once, I’m taking a break from the mess of my homeland’s society. Also it’s been 3 years since my last flight. Hello, airline food and in-flight entertainment!

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