Fab Five Reasons Why It Pays To Be A ZAP Member

Will the promise of a cashback or the possibility of winning something encourage you to return again to that store? ZAP answers this with a resounding yes promising its prospective partner merchants that 25% of its customers will return in 30 days.

As a business owner, I’d be skeptical about this and would demand a report based on in depth study. As a customer and ZAP user, I’d advise the business owner to try it out because this is a reward system that is hard to pass up.

But if you’re not a business owner, would you join ZAP as a customer/member? I’d say you should. Because the reward system not only benefits the partner merchant but the ZAP member as well.


Fab Five Reasons why It Pays to Be A ZAP Member

  1. As a ZAP member, each time you buy from a ZAP logopartner establishment, you get a cashback rebate rate between 5% to 20% based on the total amount you spent at that establishment. These are called points.
  2. You can spend your points like cash. Each point you have earned is equivalent to Php1.00 (may vary per country), which you can use to pay for your purchases on partner merchants. It doesn’t matter where you earned your points, you can spend them all on one partner establishment if you want.
  3. You can win jackpots. These are monthly giveaways by partner establishments to their patrons. The giveaways are points and the amount varies depending on how many ZAP members bought from them at a given month.
  4. You already have free 30 points upon sign-up.
  5. You also get an additional 30 points when you refer ZAP to a friend and that friend signs-up.

How do you use ZAP?

  1. Sign up. When you sign up, you only need your e-mail and/or mobile phone number. You can edit your account later, including your pin number.
  2. Download the app. This will give you an updated list of ZAP’s partner merchants, including their location. You can filter/sort to ease your search. You can even find out which of these are near you.
  3. Redeem points. When you go to a partner establishment, tell them you’re a ZAP member upon payment. They will show you a tablet in which you will enter your mobile number. That will ensure that you will get credited for your purchase.
  4. Pay using your points. If you want to use your points for payment, just tell the partner establishment that you’ll do so. They will give you the same tablet but this time, you will enter your mobile number AND pin number.
  5. Refer a friend. Within the app you have a link you can tap to refer or invite a friend. You can invite your friend via Twitter, Facebook, e-mail, or you can copy the link to your code and share it some other way. Like this.

DOES IT WORK?

It does. I’ve been a member for almost a year now and I can guarantee all of the above. I got my 30 points waiting for me when I signed up. I referred a friend and we both got free 30 points—I got it for referring him, he got his for signing up.

I have received the rebates. It takes a day or 2 for the points to be credited to your account but you will see them under “pending” immediately so you know that it is being processed.

I have won a jackpot thanks to Mrs. Fields, one of ZAP’s partner merchants. And I have used the points I’ve earned and won on other ZAP establishments and on numerous occasions.


Is ZAP for you?

It depends. If you’re the type who loves winning without really doing anything, yes it is. If you love rebates and free points, ZAP will give you that. If you like being appreciated as a patron, you’d get that through ZAP’s cashback system.

Personally, I like all these things. Plus, I already go to most of ZAP’s establishments so ZAP just gives me additional perks. Who wouldn’t want that?

ZAP’s merchant base continually grows so you expect that sooner or later, your favorite store or restaurant will be part of it, too. But just know that the partnership deal between ZAP and each establishment is not permanent and does not apply for all branches so it’s not permanent.

NOTE: This post is NOT sponsored in any way. You may, however, see this as a testament to how I find being a ZAP member beneficial and you can sign-up via the link I gave above or by clicking the ZAP logo.

Your Best Beautiful with Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash

Have you ever been in search of that perfect moisturizer for your body? If you’re the type who’s not too keen on applying lotion day in and day out, then finding a soap or body wash that provides moisture that lasts all day long should be your main priority so that you can skip the lotion ritual.

We all know that as we grow older our skin’s ability to retain moisture deteriorates. The less moisture how skin has, the more brittle it becomes and dry skin is prone to developing more wrinkles than oily or moisture rich skin.

Of course, the most natural way of preventing your skin from drying up is keeping yourself hydrated with water. Drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day goes a long way. However, a little help from reputable brands goes a long way as well.
Olay Pack

Two weeks ago, I received the above package from Olay. I was fortunate enough to be one of the few who selected to try these items products out and this couldn’t have come at a better time. Like I said, our skin loses moisture as we grow old, and I’m one of those people in search of that perfect moisturizer.

The Olay package included an 8g Olay Total Effects Day Cream (SPF 15) and a 200ml Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash. But what I’d like to talk about is the Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash.


Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash

The first thing that catches one’s attention is that this product promises to give you “deep moisture that outlasts your day”. A tall order if you ask me since I’ve gone through different soaps and body washes that promise the same but couldn’t really deliver. The best they could do is give me 4 to 6 hours, sometimes shorter depending on the weather.

How do I know this? I just do the classic test—scratching any surface of my skin with a fingernail. By noon or a little after, I see whites streaks everytime I scratch myself. So I was pretty strict with Olay’s item of choice.

I love it! If it’s moisture that lasts, really, this is the product to beat. Although it’s suggested that Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash be used with a loofah or wet puff, I decided to use my own hands. Normally, body washes lather enough if your rub it on your skin long enough. It’s not the case with this one.

Thick and heavy, but not sticky, consistency. The first thing I noticed is that the consistency of the body wash is quite thick and heavy so creating a rich lather may be a bit difficult. Personally, I’m fine with tiny soap bubbles. Rich lather and thick bubbles are usually signs that the product has SLS/SLES—a chemical that is often found is soaps and can cause skin irritation. I look at the ingredient list at the back of the bottle and it shoed no SLS/SLES, which is a big plus!

It’s also non-sticky during application and even after rinsing.  But considering that moisture is the priority, a sort of slippery skin after toweling it dry needs a little getting used to.

Relaxing scent. Another plus point is the scent. The ingredient list only gave a generic “fragrance” in its listing so I can’t really identify what it is. But since it says on the bottle that this variant of body was is “deep moisture with honey”, I’m guessing that I’m taking a whiff of honey—a scent I find relaxing.

#MoistureThatLasts. This is actually the hashtag for Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash. The insert included in the package I received included a caption “24 hours of non-sticky moisturization for your body”. Indeed! I can’t vouch for the 24 hour duration but I can guarantee that the moisture lasts as long as your waking hours, provided that you did not sweat or exposed your skin to a cold environment for long.

Applying Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash always feels like I’m applying body wash and lotion in one and after rinsing, it’s the lotion that stays. It’s a great time saver but it doesn’t skimp on the time providing my skin with moisture. So it’s really a great deal.

Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash


Tips: For best results, I suggest any of the following:

  • Wet puff or sponge first. Apply Olay Deep Moisture Body Wash on a wet puff or sponge first, then create the lather on the puff/sponge before applying on your body.
  • Body instead of loofah. If you’re using loofah, it’s better to apply the body wash all over your body using your hands, then with a wet loofah, rub it where you applied the body wash to create lather.
  • Stay. If you have the time, try leaving on the lather for a minute or two before rinsing it off.
  • Use warm water. If you have the option, pour warm or lukewarm water over your skin before using the body wash. The heat will awaken your pores making the absorption of the moisture faster.
Disclosure: I am not, in any way, being compensated for this post. Sharing my experience is optional but there is a chance to receive other special items from Olay if I do share my experience. However, rest assured that all thoughts and opinions are my own, unless otherwise stated.

#PerksOfABella: The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf—or what is more commonly known as CBTL—has been one of my go to coffee shops when I was still in law school. The ambiance is nice and relatively quieter, their tea line is to die for, and they provide free WiFi to their Swirl card holders. To me—then a law student needing a caffeine fix, a quite place to study and to freely access the internet to read/download cases online—these things highlight my experience with CBTL.

Years later, CBTL still provides the same experience. But now, it’s a place to meet and catch up with friends over tea/coffee (sometimes with a cake slice or some food), to meet potential clients, and to unwind. And the experience is all the more worthwhile when you have added perks and discounts c/o Belle De Jour (BDJ) Power Planner.

Perks: CBTL


Ever since I started using BDJ Power Planner in 2010, the CBTL coupons have always been the first to be used up. Perks include a Buy 1 Take 1 Tea Latte of choice, a free iced tea per purchase of a salad, and so forth. But the best perk for me is that the BDJ-CBTL coupons allow me to share the experience with friends, family, and colleagues.

A few months ago I shared one coupon with my friend at CTBL Trinoma. She ordered a Spicy Tuna Linguine Pasta while I ordered a large Mocha Latte and Chef’s Tuna sandwich. With her pasta, my friend got a free chocolate chip cookie (worth Php 55) while I got a free Chicago Cheesecake slice (worth Php 125) from my sandwich.

Unfortunately, there’s no coupon for the large Mocha Latte but I used my BDJ Power Planner Lifestyle Card (BDJ card), instead, to get a free upsize (worth Php 15). The BDJ card has other uses but that’s a topic for another blog post.

All in all, my friend and I received Php 195 (around $4.30) worth of perks. Plus, I got to bond with her longer because we had more to eat. 😉

Chef's Tuna sandwich

Chef’s Tuna sandwich

There’s also a Buy 2 Get 1 free Ice Blended Drink among the BDJ-CBTL coupons. This one I shared with a colleague at CBTL, Greenbelt 5. It’s too bad that there were only 2 of us, I ended up drinking the free drink. It’s a good thing that CBTL has non-fat milk and sugar options to keep the calories and other unwanted stuff at a minimum. At least I got to try 2 different drinks that day—my favorite Mocha Latte and the other was an amazing flavor, Creme Brulee.

It goes without saying that the cheapest ice blended drink would be the one made free. This was the Mocha Latte worth Php 185 (around $4.11) while the others cost Php 195 each. The added perk was I got to know this colleague better over that (large) cup of latte. That goes a long way.

Buy 2 Get 1 Free Ice Blended Drink

L: Creme Brulee | R: Mocha Latte


You may say I could’ve had these experiences even without the added perks. Sure! But I never would have tried the chocolate chip cookie, never would have ordered that slice of Chicago Cheesecake on top of ordering a filling sandwich, and never would have tasted that intriguing Creme Brulee ice blended drink. So I’m thankful I get to enjoy these little things.

CBTL

PS: The Chicago Cheesecake was served later on but we forgot to take a picture of it before gobbling it up. 😉

Review: Human Nature Safe Protect (100% Natural)

A year ago I posted a review of Human Nature’s 100% Natural Safe Block, the first ever sunblock I’ve encountered that didn’t leave me with sun burnt skin, skin discoloration, and acne breakouts. This time, Human Nature Safe Protect, also 100% natural, is a new innovation by Human Nature, which I feel most sun lovers and beach goers would love to and should keep whenever they’re out and about.

Fast Facts

IMG_20150415_123313

Price/Size:
Php 299.75 / 50g
Php 649.75 / 200g

Ingredients:
Cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, Ricinus communis (castor) seed oil, hydrogenated castor oil, zinc oxide, Helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, caprylic/capric triglyceride, dicaprylyl ether, Cera alba (beeswax), Glycine soja (soybean) oil, fragrance (all-natural), glyceryl caprylate, tocopherol (vitamin E), p-anisic acid

Product Description: ABCs
ARMORS against skin-aging UVA rays.
BLOCKS skin-burning UVB rays with SPF 30 deflecting 97% of UVB rays.
CARES for coral reefs. SafeProtect is free from parabens, oxybenzone, benzophenone and ethylhexylmethoxycinnemate that cause the bleaching of corals when washed off.

♥ No White Cast ♥
White Away! You’ve asked for it, so we’ve formulated a sunscreen with all the protection you need – and none of the white film. Don your daily sun protection today!

Source: Human Nature

DSC_2475

Impressions

SPF 15 vs. SPF 30

Honestly, I was confused at first why Human Nature (HN) would introduce a new sun block with an SPF that is double than its previous. HN Safe Block has SPF 15 while HN Safe Protect has SPF 30. I distinctly remember during one of the magalogue turnovers introducing HN Safe Block that you don’t need a high SPF.

SPF 15 already blocks 93% of the harmful UVB rays while SPF 30 will block 97%, which does not really make much of a difference.

But now, Human Nature introduced one that has exactly that—SPF 30 to block an extra 4%. So initially, I was a bit disappoint thinking that Human Nature will stick with the SPF 15.

Quality

I love the texture of Human Nature Safe Protect and scent is as heavenly as HN Safe Block. It feels like I’m just applying regular lotion but with extra protection from the sun.

In my review of Human Nature Safe Block, I said:

The application is smooth, leaving a white film of protection just like any sunblock.

With Human Nature Safe Protect, there’s no white film but the protection is there. If you love taking pictures of yourself with beautiful beach views or while in the sea, it can be quite frustrating to have that white film all over your skin. I find that Human Nature Safe Protect, with its “No White Cast” formula, gets rid of this problem. Who would want to look like a clown?

Strength

The lack of white cast does not lessen the strength of Human Nature Safe Protect. After applying the product, you’d see a dewy shine left on your skin. That’s the protection. It’s also water resistant so if you take a dip in the pool or the sea, you’ll see the water form beads on your skin. This is very helpful against swimming pools that have a more chlorine than the others. Human Nature Safe Protect keeps the chemical at bay.

I used Human Nature Safe Protect on three different occasions—my trip to Boracay, to Pagudpud, and to a day in Amana Water Park—and I enjoyed every minute of my time under the sun.

Value

Human Nature Safe Protect is more expensive that Human Nature Safe Block, but I guess that comes with the “No White Cast” formulation and the higher SPF level. I think it’s a reasonable price, especially if you think about protecting not just your skin but the environment as well. My time in the sea has always been more enjoyable knowing that I am not doing any harm to the environment and I feel much closer to nature this way.

My comment, however, as with the previous one, I wish the sizes were more diverse. Human Nature Safe Protect has only 50g and 200g sizes that are too small and too big, respectively, for any one person to use.

Verdict: 10/10

I love Human Nature Safe Protect. Yes, I was initially disappointed and confused because Human Nature seemed to detract from what it said before about SPF levels but that’s business. What I care more about is the fact that Human Nature Safe Protect has better formulation—“No White Cast”—and I think it improved from its predecessor, which is expected. And if you noticed, the packaging is much better and I like the stencil pakiwan.

So yes, it’s a 10/10 and I recommend, because I’m sure you’re still squeezing one more beach outing before summer ends officially, that you buy one and see and feel the difference for yourself. I will definitely buy this again.

Disclaimer: I am a Human Nature Dealer but I strive to give a fair and objective opinion on Human Nature products. After all, I am a consumer of the products myself.

Review: Tony Moly I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet

For the past few weeks, I’ve been hoarding all sorts of kikay items. If you’ve been following me via Instagram, you’ve probably seen the Heroine Make products I bought—mostly products for the eyes. What I didn’t share was the set of Tony Moly mask sheets (also known as facial mask) I bought at the same time.

Tony Moly Im Real Mask Sheets

Last night I got to try the Tony Moly I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet, which is marketed as a skin purifier.

Skin Benefits of Seaweed

Particular to Tony Moly I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet, the seaweed used is the bladderwrack (a form of kelp), which has high iodine. However, it’s not safe to ingest bladderwrack in case you’re thinking of curing any thyroid conditions you may have.

According to WebMD, people apply bladderwrack to the skin for skin diseases, burns, aging skin, and insect bites, but, there isn’t enough scientific research to determine whether it is actually effective. Still, articles abound as to the beneficial uses of seaweed in general.

Aside from iodine, herbwisdom notes that bladderwrack is also rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, sulfur, silicon and iron and high in some B-complex vitamins. It contains moderate amounts of phosphorus, selenium, manganese and zinc and small amounts of vitamins A, C, E and G. It also contains anti-sterility vitamin S as well as vitamin K. It is rich in algin and mannitol, carotene and zeaxantin with traces of bromine.

So now that we have the basics, let’s go to the Seaweeds Mask Sheet of Tony Moly.

Tony Moly I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet

Tony Moly Im Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet

Fast Facts

Price: Php 78.00Tony Moly Im Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet back
Volume: 21ml

Ingredients:
Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, PEG/PPG-17/6 Copolymer, Panthenol, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil Chlorphenesin, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Fucus Vesiculosus Extract, Phenyl Trimethicone, Carbomer, 1,2-Hexanediol, Propanediol, Tromethamine, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Glacier Water, Dipotassium Glycymhizate (?), Caprylyl Glycol, Illicium Verum (Anise) Fruit Extract, Alantoin Disodium EDTA, Fragrance

Product Description:1 
Micro emulsion essence type mask to provide deep moisture
Three (3) layer pulp mask sheet to give deep moisture to skin
Bladderwrack purifies for clean and soft skin
No paraben, talc, benzophenone, triethanomalin, tar coloring

How To Use:
Tear open and apply to face.
Leave on for 20-30 minutes and then remove.

Tony Moly Im Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet forehead gap

Impressions

Scent: 8/10

Smells great! It definitely did not smell of the sea, salt, or seaweed. But that’s the thing. I can’t place the scent because it wasn’t what I expected. Probably the apple extract has something to do with it but then the ingredient list showed “fragrance” so it may be something else. The scent doesn’t win against Watson’s Camella Callus Cell Vitamin F Facial Mask, but it’s still worth commending.

Price: 8/10

Reasonable. Not as pricey as Dermal’s, but not as cheap as Watson’s. Considering the recommendation to use facial masks 2-3 times a week, you’d want to have cheap ones with good quality.

Application: 7/10

There is still the forehead gap. I guess if you have a wide forehead as mine, then it’ll be a constant problem. Other than this, I found the instructions lacking, if only because Tony Moly is made in Korea and has more than half of its back information in Korean. So I had to do a bit more research (same with Dermal’s) to know how exactly to use these products and what these products are for.

Tony Moly Im Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet appliedSince Dermal’s, I’ve been applying facial masks after applying toner and have also been massaging the excess extract on my forehead and neck—places the mask can’t reach.

This mask also requires more time to leave on compared to Dermal’s and Watson’s, both of which only require 15-20 minutes. So if you’re in a hurry (to fall asleep maybe), then this may not be the mask for you, unless you don’t follow such instructions anyway.

Finally, I think the cuts/grooves on the sides are to short so that it becomes hard to have the mask conform to the contours of the face. When I applied mine, it became uneven on the left side while it was smooth on the right.

Promise: 7/10

After researching on seaweeds, bladderwrack in particular, I’m not so sure anymore if the Tony Moly’s I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet will deliver in its promise at “Skin Purifying”.

What I felt after removing the mask though is tighter skin. It didn’t feel smooth and silky, because my fingers couldn’t glide without friction. But it didn’t feel like I wasted my money either.

One thing’s for sure. It didn’t irritate my skin or cause any adverse reaction. So that’s a definite plus!

I also found the mask to be very cool on the skin, which probably contributed to its feeling pleasantly tight after.

Verdict: 8/10

If you’re into Korean brands, have the time for a long beauty ritual, and believe in the power of the sea, then you’d like the Tony Moly I’m Real Seaweeds Mask Sheet. You’d love the scent and the feeling of tighter, firmer skin. Whether it actually purifies is yet to be seen and may require regular use. Will I buy this again? Probably not. It’s not as cheap as the other brands but it’s good for trying at least once.

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Do you have a facial mask you’d like to share?