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I used to listen to EDM in the morning to get myself pumped for the gym. Lately, not so much. Perhaps I’ve grown out of it? …or maybe it’s because I’ve been doing more yoga. And less clubbing. Ahh, that explains it.
Every week or so, I’d scour the internet in search of new music for my yoga and/or gym playlist. A few of my favorite sites to look are YouTube, SoundCloud, 8tracks or IndieShuffle. I stumbled upon this great yoga mix which I have been listening to a lot lately – whether it’s at the gym, yoga studio or simply while working at my desk.
The mix is designed to fit the flow of a yoga practice, and works well for both personal practice, as well as for teachers looking for background music for their classes.The vibe is dreamy and haunting with a gentle intensity midway to support the core of the hour long practice.
It ends with SOLON’s recent release “Datta” – a track specifically written for savasana. The mix captures the current sound of the Future Sound of Yoga events and the artists featured include: James Blake, Caribou, Bonobo, Four Tet, Aphex Twin, Trentemoller and Massive Attack.
There are no sitars, tablas or wind chime sounds! The mix is made up of electronica from the likes of Caribou, James Blake, Aphex Twin, Trentemoller, Bonobo, and Massive Attack… It has already had been streamed over 6,500 times since its launch in Australia. DOWNLOAD NOW
After a month of living out of a suitcase and almost two without internet (sorry for the long hiatus!), I’ve officially relocated again. Charles and I have made MANILA our new home…
The adventure begins!
Moving to a new city can come with as many obstacles as getting into shape. For instance, I didn’t expect it would take us months to find an apartment we both love and fits our budget. We even began apartment-hunting last November! After several delays with visa application and a ton of other paperwork, we finally found ourselves a cozy apartment overlooking the beautiful Manila Golf Course and Makati skyline. WIN!
In fitness terms, I would say; Don’t expect immediate results and keep sweating to figure out what works best for your body. You can’t rush something you want to last a long time, right?
Welcome new challenges.
One of the things I secretly love to do in the kitchen is pretending I’m a famous chef. Living out of a suitcase made it hard to fix a home-cooked meal so I was compelled to eat out. Everyday. For about a month. My not-so healthy eating habits affected my well-being to some extent. And I’ll be completely honest; for a while, I lost the motivation to hit the gym. I missed being a chef…
A photo posted by Fay Hokulani ⭐ (@fayhokulani) on
Keep calm and plan ahead.
For a while, I was caught up in a limbo during the transition period between moving from Singapore to Manila. Being in a completely new surrounding, away from friends and family brings new uncertainties.
I’ve had moments of excitement, happiness, stress, depression and more.
Not all of those feelings are fun, let me tell you.
Spending time looking inward, either while meditating or working out, I’ve been able to identify the root of those feelings, which have led me to understand what I was afraid of so that I could then reframe that perception into opportunity.
I’ve learned that when you’re in the unknown, you don’t know what might come … and so you have to flow with this change. One way to get the courage to begin, from which everything else flows, is to plan and prepare thoroughly in advance. Getting caught up in the things I can’t control in my life only takes away my energy to capitalize on all of the moments I can control.
Wearing make-up to the gym is just about the worst thing you can do for your skin. Imagine the cakey, muddy mess that ensues when those pores and sweat ducts are blocked by thick makeup products. Even in my 20s I’d still get breakouts, bumps and blackheads as a result. When it comes to sweating it out, bare-faced and pony-tailed is much cleaner and easier.
However, I can’t deny that a little bit of concealer and lip stain have helped me to look less like Gollum when I’m training people. Filling in my sparse eyebrows with a pencil also helps perk up a sleepy morning face. The only problem is that it doesn’t last, especially after I use a towel to wipe off the sweat from my face. All that effort to put on any bit of make-up seems pointless when it’s gone ten minutes in the door.
I tried eyebrow embroidery two years ago and while I loved the results, the thought of someone using a razorblade to tattoo my brows put me off from doing it again. Numbing cream applied to my brow area helped with the pain but I remember sitting in the chair for an hour thinking to myself, “I hope this ends quickly. Actually, now would be good.”
The effects of eyebrow embroidery typically lasts from two to three years with proper care. Since I left Kuala Lumpur in 2013, I’ve been on a quest to find a reputable salon in Singapore where I can beautify my brows so I don’t have to do it myself everyday. Putting on make-up can be such a chore!
Erabelle offers a solution to simplify beauty routines so women can look good with minimal time and effort. They offer beauty services to enhance eyebrows, lips and eyes through the use of semi-permanent ink colors. Imagine wearing make-up, permanently. Of course, the treatment that caught my eyes immediately was eyebrow embroidery, or what they call; ERABROWLOGY.
Since I was new at Erabelle, I was first introduced to the Erabrow Design. This service is the first step for Erabrowlogy. Erabrow Design is priced at $50 (u.p. $29 for first trial) but is complimentary if you opt to sign up for Erabrowlogy on the same day.
My brow artist assessed my brows to design a shape that best frames my facial structure. I wasn’t entirely sure if I wanted to do eyebrow embroidery yet because I wanted to see if I actually liked the eyebrow design.
Upon seeing the beautiful brows my artist created for me, I knew I wanted it to be (semi) permanent!
I thought my brow artist did a phenomenal job creating a look that best compliments my heart-shaped face. I wished my brows looked like that naturally or with minimum effort. The best part is, Erabelle can make that happen! So I booked an appointment for Erabrowlogy at their Vivo City outlet.
The Erabrowlogy Process
Step 1: Brow Preparation
A brow mask is applied onto the brow area to help remove dead skin cells and excess sebum whilst hydrating the skin. This is especially advantageous for those with oily or dry skin, as unhealthy skin condition is a factor contributing to colour retention.
Step 2: Erabrow Design
The Erabrow Design customization process includes face shape and eyebrow analysis, designing, trimming and tweezing.
Five factors are taken into consideration when designing the brow shape:
(i) Length of eyebrows
(ii) Thickness of eyebrows
(iii) Shape and tip of the brow arch
(iv) Starting point of the brows being light and natural-looking
(v) Ending point of the brows being complete and precise. Creation of the perfect arch will then be done with Erabelle Long-Lasting Brow Pencil where shade is chosen accordingly to suit skin tone and hair colour.
My brow artist ensured that the shape and tip of my eyebrows were perfectly symmetrical from every angle before taking a photo of the final look. Numbing cream is applied to the brow area to alleviate any pain or discomfort during the coloring treatment.
Step 3: Patch Test
Step 4: Preparation of Equipment
Using their specialized soft shading technique, semi-permanent colors are applied just below the skin to stimulate the look of perfectly-drawn brows.
Erabelle aims to design a polished and sophisticated look that enhances my natural features.
Erabrowlogy also comes with a pre-treatment and boosted aftercare routine to enhance brow-color retention for every session. The Browlogy Care Kit consists of:
– Aftercare cream (5g)
To be applied every morning and night for at least 5 days of the colour-settling process.
– Hydra Cleansing Water (15ml)
For ease of cleansing, Hydra Cleansing Water can be used with cotton pads to cleanse the face. (Please note to avoid the brow area on the first day.)
– Skin Calming Mask (5g)
To counter discomfort and redness after the procedure, it is recommended to use this mask for the 2nd, 3rd and 4th nights after the procedure for a soothing effect.
The Erabrowlogy package is available for $1,314 and includes four color services with pre-treatment and Browlogy Care kits.
Don’t miss out! WLF readers are entitled to a complimentary Brow-Wow kit (worth $170) with your Erabrowlogy purchase when you quote ‘Fay’.
Hit the comments section and let me know if you liked this review! By the way, the exclusive ‘Fay‘ promotion ends 31 May 2015 so make sure to check out their website to book your appointment soon.
When I’m working out in the gym, I’m constantly trying to keep up with myself. I listen to loud, fast-paced music to tune out from the world and get my head in the zone. My heart is racing and I’m not thinking about anything else other than counting down the repetitions. (Unless of course, when I’m on the treadmill there’s no stopping the endless train of thoughts that run in my head. No pun intended. “What shall I have for lunch? How did my favorite sock get lost in the dryer? Is that thing alive? Goddamn it, I hate running. RUNNNN!”
On the yoga mat, working out is a completely different experience.
Like many people, I was introduced to yoga as a way to stay in shape and improve my flexibility. Along the way, I realized that yoga is not just a form of exercise. Yoga works on so many levels – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. The first and perhaps most vital thing that yoga teaches is body awareness.
As I became more mindful of my feelings and reactions in my yoga practice during the teacher training, I began to notice that where I was in my practice was a reflection of where I was with myself at the moment.
On good days when I felt mostly positive, finding focus and balance came as easily as bringing my palms together in namaste. I would pull off any yoga asana (posture) with ease. I’d feel powerful and strong while especially in a Warrior 2 pose. These are the days when I’d walk out of class feeling like I could conquer the world.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, any negative thoughts, doubts or judgment would create resistance and tension in my body. When something weighs me down mentally, I felt the weight physically too. Yoga takes me to those places deep inside myself where my true emotions are hidden.
For me, the process of accepting my body was the perfect lesson in learning to deal with my ego in my practice. Finding my strengths and embracing my weaknesses is at the core of my ahimsa (non-violence) practice towards myself.
When I first learned how to do a headstand, I practiced a lot at home in front of the wall. Eventually, I challenged myself to move away from the safety of my ‘crutch’. For a brief moment I had no idea how to stop myself from falling — so I did. I let myself fall and landed on my back, but good thing I remembered a simple safety trick: tuck the chin in to chest to make sure the neck and spine are always protected.
As soon as I picked myself up, I was ready to do it all over again. I didn’t think I’d overcome my fear of falling that quickly because I was dependent on the wall for months! I was excited about reaching my goal to finally pull off a perfect headstand with confidence, but I was also aware and respectful of my body’s physical limitations.
I took the pressure off by setting a rule to treat my body gently. I learned not to let my ego dictate how deep I would go into a pose or how far I’d push my body. I’m not counting weights or repetitions; I’m not competing; I’m listening to my body.
Open your heart
I do enjoy taking the time to practice by myself at home as it allows me to move at my own pace and understand my body better. Sometimes I think I can get a little too comfortable in my alone-time that I forget how enjoyable it is to practice yoga with friends!
On the first day of teacher training, we were asked to make a short introduction about ourselves and how our hearts found their way to yoga. I sensed that a few of us were quite shy and reserved; I felt the same way about myself in front a big group of strangers. I guess I was a little nervous about meeting so many new people. Little did I know over the next few months how much I would come to appreciate them and how quickly I would learn to let go of my own self-judgment and fears.
A few weeks into the training, our class of 30 students was split into smaller groups so we could take turns to teach and learn directly from each other. Sharing enormous passion for yoga created very strong bonds in my yoga circle.
The sense of community created strong friendships that have been rare in my life; I shall always treasure that time spent bonding with my classmates.
I think the point where we really got to be ourselves and got to know each other more personally happened outside the classroom. Arun and Prakash organized a day out for the class to practice Karma Yoga. No yoga mats required, all we needed was team effort!
Karma Yoga is the path of selfless service which involves supporting and giving back to others without expecting anything in return. The way I understand it, Karma Yoga it is about giving love and loving unconditionally. Caring for the environment is one way we can give love to our planet.
I wish to express my gratitude for the practice of yoga that I have been taught by my extraordinary teachers, Arun and Prakash at Pure Yoga Singapore.
I learned so much from the 200-hour Hatha Yoga teacher training: a deeper understanding of yoga, body and mind awareness and kindness to all living things. I feel inspired to share this knowledge and insight and will make it my mission to pass the benefits of Yoga on to others.