Review: Diode Laser Underarm Hair Removal at Skin Station

(This is one of those “I-wish-this-were-a-Sponsored-Post” blog entries.  But it’s not.)

I’ve been getting a lot of private messages regarding my quest for hairless underarms courtesy of the IPL package I got from Mendez Medical Group, in reference to my blogpost entitled Tiis Ganda.  To be honest, I wasn’t satisfied with it.  Although I got the 3-in-1 package (IPL + whitening + excessive sweating treatment), I ended up getting only the IPL during my later visits there.  Why?  Because I felt like the whitening and excessive sweating treatments were mema lang—padding lang.  Something to “sweeten” the deal.  I got this impression because when I was getting my treatments there, they were offering me the “more effective way” to whiten my underarms which was the blue peeling with diamond peel.  It cost me an additional P3,000.  As for the excessive sweating treatment, I have a feeling that its effectiveness was but fleeting.  So to save time, I would just tell the aesthetician to proceed to the IPL.

Then it gets more confusing from there: some aestheticians would advise me that it’s better if we don’t put the gel anymore to better penetrate/burn the hair follicles.  But the others would tell me I should stick with the gel because it’s my skin’s protection from the laser.

Finally, up to now I still wonder why they would insist on plucking/threading in between sessions, because all the other clinics (even those where my friends went to) strictly prohibited plucking/threading in between sessions.  Shaving was OK, but definitely not plucking/threading.

Because of these, tinamad na ako to finish my sessions.  Anyway, I didn’t feel any difference.  I went there up to my 4th session only.  I thought I’ll forever be stuck to plucking, shaving, and occasional waxing.

But thank God I discovered Skin Station!

When a branch near our office opened, I didn’t even consider going there.  Mukhang mahal, eh.  But my soshal friends urged me; they said that Skin Station’s diode laser hair removal was great as it was relatively painless.  And it has promos since it has just opened.  Go na raw ako.

So I checked it out.  I was surprised at how affordable it was: P5,000 for 8 sessions of Diode Laser Underarm Hair Removal.  Great promo!

Although the promo of Mendez Medical Group seems cheaper (P3,000 for 12 sessions of IPL + whitening + excessive sweating treatment), Skin Station’s deal (P5,000 for 8 Diode Laser Underarm Hair Removal sessions) is way, way, way better.

Why I love Skin Station and its Diode Laser Underarm Hair Removal Promo

First, the ambiance is great.  It’s something I never expected, because I’ve only been in two derma clinics (alam n’yo na kung no ‘yung isa), and neither of them considered setting a good atmosphere.

Skin Station (at least in the branch I frequent, which is Skin Station at Laguna Central in Greenfield, Sta. Rosa City) looks and smells clean.

Skin Station Diode Laser IPL Painless Hair Removal ReviewSpacious, well-lit and clean room where my diode laser underarm hair removal was done


IMG 0561Clean wraparound to be used during the treatment is already prepared upon entering


Diode Hair Removal Skin Station ReviewSkin Station aesthetician’s paraphernalia during the diode laser hair removal all orgnized on the bedside table

Skin Station Greenfield Branch ReviewEven the toilet at Skin Station is clean! 

The music, too! Instead of listening to the mindless chatting among aestheticians or the annoying spiels of DJs of radio stations, relaxing spa music is played.

Second, the staff is collectively organized, professional and neat.  I appreciate that I get text messages reminding me of my appointment, the aestheticians and receptionists talk in hushed tones…and most importantly, there is no pasikatan among the aestheticians.  I really, really hate it when one aesthetician brags that she’s the best and her colleagues are palpak or not knowledgeable.  This frequently happens in beauty parlors and even in Mendez.  Not to mention the talking in loud voices, sometimes even using crass language.

And third, the treatment itself is effective and economical.  My first two points would have been invalid if not for this last one.  I’ve just had my 7th diode laser underarm hair removal session last Easter Sunday, and until now I could barely feel any hair growth on my underarm.  This has been happening since after my 3rd session: hair growth is very slow, and hair has become very fine.

Things you should know:

  1. It’s better if you go there without having plucked, waxed or threaded your underarm hair.  Otherwise, they might refuse you.  They’re targeting the hair follicles, remember.  Better yet, go there na “in full bloom” ang underarm hairs mo.  They take photos of your underarm per session so you can track your progress.
  2. Before each session after taking your underarm’s picture, the aesthetician will shave your underarm.  When it grows back (days after your session), fret not because it will fall off on its own.  Or you can even pull it using your fingers without feeling any sting.  Remember, its follicle was burned down.
  3. Each session must have a gap of at least 6 weeks, and no plucking/threading/waxing must be done in between.  Shaving is allowed, but remember that shaving causes underarm darkening so keep shaving at bay.  Anyway, hair growth after even the first session will be stunted and the growing hairs are fine.
  4. They will ask you to buy a post-laser ointment/cream.  I didn’t buy, and I was alright.
  5. It’s true that the Diode Laser Hair Removal is almost painless.  I remember even falling asleep during one session!  Unlike the IPL where I’m constantly worried na baka masunog ang kili-kili ko.  With Skin Station’s Diode Laser Hair Removal machine, it’s just like an ultrasound head that the aesthetician kneads.  Mas masakit pa yung kalamigan ng gel pa dumampi sa kili-kili.
  6. If you are pregnant or suspect to be pregnant, this is not for you.
  7. Never open your eyes during each session.  Otherwise, your eye may be damaged.
  8. The following day after your session, you are not to use any deodorant or anti-perspirant on your underarms.
  9. If you get the 8 sessions promo (like me), make sure you don’t lose your vouchers.  No voucher, no service.  Vouchers are also transferable and may be given as a gift, by the way.
  10. The vouchers have no expiry.  So even if I get pregnant and can’t use my last voucher, I can keep it and use it even if my child is already in high school.  LOL. 😛
  11. If the promo is no longer ongoing, get a membership.  All members can avail of all promos—yes, even those whose promo periods that have lapsed—any time.  Better yet, ask a member to buy for vouchers for you.  Tutal transferable naman, remember?  In fact, I got a membership to avail of its Hyal-C facial with diamond peel.Which I will blog about next time. 😉


Wayback Wednesday: Hong Kong Hotels Review

I’ve promised you guys so many blog posts that never pushed through. Usually when I have the time to blog about it, parang laos na ‘yung “news” so I don’t bother and move on with my current affairs. But there are moments like this that I have the time to blog but I don’t know what to blog about. Enter “Wayback Wednesday” blogs—now I’ll backtrack on things that I feel I should have shared with you but was too busy to.

For my first Wayback Wednesday post, I’ll share with you my take on the hotels we’ve stayed in in Hong Kong last year. I feel these reviews will be helpful if you or a loved one is currently looking for a hotel in Hong Kong.

We stayed in two hotels in Hong Kong last year: Residence G and Disney Hollywood Hotel. Here are my unbiased reviews about these two Hong Kong hotels.


Residence G Hotel (aka Hotel G) Review

If not for the fact that I lost my iPad, we wouldn’t have stayed here. But to pay penance for my stupid mistake, we opted to stay in this relatively cheaper hotel. When I say “cheap”, it isn’t exactly cheap. Most hotel rooms in Hong Kong were tailormade for hobbits, I suppose. Ang liliit talaga. And Residence G was no exception. This was my second choice because of its good reviews on TripAdvisor and because it has a complimentary smartphone.

When our awful cab driver dropped us off, I had a sinking feeling already. It was located in an area na medyo eskinita ang dating. Katabi pa ng mga bar.

Screenshot of Residence G “neighborhood”

It has been described on TripAdvisor as having this “modern” vibe, and most reviewers loved its “modern” vibe. Unfortunately, not we. Perhaps I’m old-fashioned, but I still prefer a cozy, homey ambience over a “steel-y” one. See for yourself:

Yep, that’s the bathroom across the bar. And yes, it’s transparent

The cabinets

The bed

The bathroom. Silver lining: I love the peppermint-scented bath essentials provided

To be fair to the hotel staff, they tried to help me recover the phone I left in the cab. They also helped us locate the nearest FitFlop store in the block. However, some reviewers on TripAdvisor said that they give complimentary cookies/fruits. I expected this, but we never received any.

Residence G Hong Kong (by Hotel G)
Room Type: Good Room
2.2 Austin Avenue,Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Contact Number: +00 852 5808 4528
Cost per night of our hotel room: a little less than Php7,000

Disney’s Hollywood Hotel Review

Whatever bad experiences we had in Hong Kong were quickly forgotten the moment we stepped inside the confines of the “happiest place on Earth.” Yes, it goes without saying that I love, love, love and absolutely LOVE Disney’s Hollywood Hotel! I’ve been to many hotels but this is my favorite hotel so far!

The moment we stepped in the lobby, I knew we were going to love it! The lobby was really spacious and modern-looking, but it has this whimsical charm. I can’t really explain, so I hope I was able to capture them with these photos:

Upon entry, you’re gonna see the hotel’s toy & apparel store

Check-in counter

Across the check-in counter is this spacious and kid-friendly waiting lounge. Ready to go to our bedroom?

But before that, here’s the lobby:

Aaaand here’s our bedroom: [Read more…]

Dreamy Pictures from Dreamy-Garden Portraits

Guys, I’ve been meaning to share these super duper wonderful photos of our family with you for the longest time! These were taken by the very talented Nadia Vieira, with the help of Tamami Kretzschmar, of Dreamy-Garden Portrait!

The first time I saw this duo’s works, I gasped. The pictures that they produce are pure magic!

View More:

For some reason, their photos stir up something in me. I feel nostalgic, I feel in love, I feel warm, I feel tingly, and I feel happy! Nadia not only captures the essence and soul of the models, but she also mesmerizes those who look at her photos!

When the creative duo invited our family (that includes our extended family—our bullmastiffs!) to model for them, we readily said, “YES!!!” And boy are we glad that we did, because it was a fun experience. Which of course, resulted to having photos we will cherish for a looooong time!

Tamami (wearing the hat) and Nadia (holding the camera) behind the scenes during our photoshoot

Let’s get to know the 411 on the Nadia Veiera while I show you some of our wonderful photos.

5647_1514313668794682_1057637968_nNadia Vieira, the talented photographer of Dreamy-Garden Portrait!

How did Dreamy-Garden start?

Nadia: Back in Ecuador, I used to run a family portrait business. But then my husband had to work here in the Philippines, and our whole family came with him. Since photography is really my passion, I decided to replicate my business here. I asked my neighbor and new friend, Tamami, to join the adventure because of her artistic skills and kindness to children.

Nadia’s partner, Tamami Kretzschmar is soo good in set design! And yes, she also is a fantastic graphic artist!

There are lots of photographers and photography studios out there. What sets Dreamy-Garden apart and what makes it special?

Nadia: We are a boutique studio. This means that we have a very personalized attention to each client.

On our first consultation, we even discuss the goals of the Portrait Session (what it is for, etc.), and we talk about the location, what to wear, etc.

Nadia taught me how to crane my neck, emote and speak with my eyes!

Each photo session can be arranged at our studios (in Los Banos and in Manila) or at our favorite: outdoors before sunset! We can also arrange for an make-up artist if requested.

After our photo session, we meet again to look at the photos together. At this point, we discuss the custom design wall portrait pieces that we create for each client.

At Dreamy Garden, we look to create an heirloom that will be cherished by the families, and that is possible because we devote time and attention to our clients. That also means we have limited booking slots.


What is your specialty?

Nadia: We are a family-oriented portrait studio. That includes special sessions like pregnancy, newborns, and grandparents…and even pets!

Fun fact: Tamami is also a pet whisperer!

We provide not only portrait photography. We specialize in create pieces of art to decorate our client’s homes. Our products are museum quality: canvas, fine art paper, and wooden canvas. We partner with a framer that offers custom hand-made wooden frames.

I love the photo, and I love the wooden frame!!!

A portrait on wood presents an organic way to display some of life’s most fulfilling moments. Your photos on wood will become a focal point in your home.

We normally ask to our clients to send us pictures of the walls where they plan to hang their portraits. We then design and advise our clients about the color and arrangement of portraits on their wall.

Dreamy-Garden offers high quality canvas prints: strong material against UV that makes the color last your lifetime. Portraits wcreate a one-of-a-kind masterpiece!


What’s your favorite subject?

Tamami’s eye for design complements Nadia’s photography prowess!

[Read more…]

Wardrobe Diary #67: High on Love (Feb. 13, 2015)


I hope you had a love-filled Valentine’s weekend, just as I did!  I loved how our Valentine’s date went.    And boy, did we make the most out of it. 😉

This is a big deal for me because:

1. This was only the second time we had each other only to ourselves on an overnight date ever since Raviv was born.  ‘Yung first one, ang jologs pa nung place.

2. Valentine’s Day used to be stressful for us, because February used to be super busy for us.  As in sakit pa ng ulo for me because I would reluctantly heed Randy’s request na mag-date naman daw kami (#AkoNa).  And after a lunch date somewhere without any reservations, we would rush back to work.  Going through the motions lang talaga para hindi masabing wala na kaming romansa sa katawan.

But not this year.  Five days to go before Valenrine’s Day, we already had a concrete plan (yes, prepared na kami nang lagay na ‘yan!)

In the afternoon of Friday the 13th, Randy and I dropped Raviv at Gymboree Sta. Rosa then headed to Acacia Hotel in Alabang.  We got Acacia Hotel’s Valentine’s staycation package, and we also had tickets to its Valentine’s show.  We chose to spend it in Alabang because Randy is allergic to MMDA and traffic.  Eh haller, Saturday ang Valentine’s!

We arrived at Acacia Hotel at almost 4 p.m.  I loved almost everything about Acacia Hotel, by the way.  It’s a big part of why it was such a pleasant Valentine’s weekend.

I can’t help but feel extra special with Acacia Hotel’s little welcoming token, with matching “origami” of a turtle!

 Randy and I just had ample time to rest and “be a couple” (wink!) before the pre-Valentine’s show cocktails at 7 p.m.

Katuwa si Randy—he usually is KJ when it comes to selfies and photo ops, but he was game that afternoon!

 And then at almost 7 p.m., I changed into my “date” outfit.  Here I was:

little black dress: La Copa

bag: Louis Vuitton Alma

shoes: Aldo

Can I just say how much I loved my dress?  It’s a little black dress that just hid my love handles, made me look slimmer, and really comfortable. [Read more…]

Happy New Hair: My Keratin Treatment aka Brazilian Blowout aka Permanent Blowdry Experience

Hello hello hello hello!!!  My two weeks’ worth of chika are already jiggling with excitement as I type away!  I’m very sorry for being MIA for a long time. I know I’ve given this excuse many times in the past, but I swear I’m so busy that Randy is even frowning upon the fact that I’m squeezing this blogging in.

But how can I not blog?  Last week I got this really touching comment on my two-week old “latest” blog entry:

‘Di ba?  Denise, thank you so much for this very sweet message!  I truly, truly appreciate this!

Anyway, as Denise has alluded–happy new hair to me!  Yes, after almost three years, I’m straight again!

When my curls (digipermed in October 2013) have started getting really loose and the ends of my hair got really dry, I started hating my hair and knew pruning time was inevitable.  At first, my friends told me to renew my digiperm.  But I was tired of it.  I wanted to sport a bob to get rid of the remaining curls.

To convince my friends to support my quest to have a more modern and stylish hair, I actually pestered the salesladies of Metro Gaisano at ATC to put a wig on me:

 Chrys:  Dewmaine para kang si Katie Holmes, ang ganda…

After a few seconds…

Chrys:  Ay Dewmaine para ka rin palang si Charice nung paunti-unti na syang nag-a-out…Zaira tumabi ka kay Dewmaine, dali!  Tapos Dewmaine mag-pose ka nang parang ‘yung mga nakakunot parang si Charice…

Chrys:  Ayaaaan perfect!  Kayo na si Charice at Mommy Racquel!

Guys, ganyan talagang kaibigan si Chrysanthemum Collado! #SanayNaKami

Our peg.  Photo from Inquirer

Anyway, I actually sported a bob  five years ago.  And people told me I looked great. 😉  Lookie lookie:

Moi, 6 years ago sporting short hair with my student’s cute sister

In fairness, I think I looked fresh and young sporting that bob.  However, I’m a wash-and-wear girl when it comes to hair—as in I’m very lazy and terrible when it comes to fixing my hair (digiperms and stick straight hair give me that luxury).  And the hair in the photo above took me ten minutes to achieve, and I had to use a blower!  My hair tends to flyaway when short.  And I’m not willing to spend 10 minutes on my hair every day, thank you very much.

But my hopes went up when I heard about the Keratin Treatment aka Brazilian Blowout aka Permanent Blowdry.  When Randy went to Obagi at ATC for his checkup, I scoured the nearby beauty parlors and asked about Keratin Treatment aka Brazilian Blowout aka Permanent Blowdry.  I was told it does not straighten like rebonding but that it does remove the frizz.  I showed the hairstylists the hairstyles I’d like to achieve: [Read more…]

My New Cellphone’s Blog Debut

Don’t hold your breath, it ain’t the much-talked and hyped-much iPhone 6.  #WishKoLang.  Actually, far from it.  Not even its significantly less expensive counterpart from Samsung.  But I’m already so happy with it.  So anong kwento?


How to retain your lost/stolen mobile number

OK, so when I returned to the Philippines phoneless from Hong Kong, Randy was inconvenienced because I kept on borrowing his phone.  So one of the first things I did was to go to Globe to request the same number.  You need to present either an affidavit of loss or your old SIM bed.  If you have registered for G-Cash, an ID would do.  But I recommend that on the onset you tell the Globe people that you’re there to get a SIM so they could tell you right there and then whether they could provide you a SIM with your old number.  Because on the first Globe center I went to, I was told they had none available after I had lined up for half an hour!  But they were nice enough to call other Globe centers and informed me which branch had the kind of SIM I needed.


Back to bar phone

When I had my new SIM card, I inserted it to one of our existing cellular phones.  We had quite a few in our office lying around, as we only used some of them during the summer.  So I got to choose whichever I liked.  This was my “first pick”:

Guys, meet my new mobile phone, hehe. Pwede n'yo na akong i-text, same number. #penance #crimeandpunishment

A photo posted by Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga (@momsterteacher) on

I did not ask Randy to buy me a new phone (because, believe it or not, I’m far from being a gadget freak.  So I let Randy choose my gadgets.  My phones and laptops last with me for a long, long time until they get broken or, in this case, lost/stolen.  Gaaah!) because I felt like I had to be punished for being so negligent.  So I told myself to suck it up.

But after weeks of being back on bar phones, I was ready to explode with frustration and tears.  First, I always had to wait for Randy to sleep before I could even check my Instagram.  Next, I read emails quite late.  Third, my thumb got sore from texting.  And fourth, I would always feel so helpless not being able to document the mundane yet pretty things around me, and the biglaang monumental stuff without a camera phone.

The phone on top is mine, the one at the bottom is Raviv's yaya's phone. Hahahaha! #penance #crimeandpunishment

A photo posted by Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga (@momsterteacher) on

Inggit na inggit ako sa cellphone ng yaya ni Raviv mga baks!

I’m not fond of joining mga raffle-raffle pero guys, nag-Google search na talaga ako ng mga raffle na iPad or smartphones ang premyo at pinatos ko silang lahat!  I was that miserable.  Inisip ko na ring sumulat kay Vicky Morales sa Wish Ko Lang at i-exaggerate ang mga kamalasan ko sa gadget para bigyan ako ng bagong smartphone, but thank God my inner delicadeza and common sense won over me.

So I had to swallow my pride and went up to Randy to tell him I wanted a smartphone.  Yun lang, wala nang gana ang lolo natin na ibili ako ng gadget.  His running joke that our helpers found funny was that the surprising thing with me was that I haven’t yet lost my MacBook Air.  Of course imbyerna yan, but I didn’t have it in me to complain over his lack of enthusiasm and his joke.  I headed to my next “consultant”—my gadget-freak BFF.  Who also happened to be mean.  I poured out my heart to her via text.  She seemed to empathize.  I should have known better!


My frenemy

Nung gabing nakita kong may pinost siya sa Facebook ko, I knew she is letting the whole Facebook world see my inner misery, which I carefully cultivated to appear as though it was not a big deal.  At ito na nga po ang bumulaga sa akin pagbukas ko ng Facebook ko:


With the caption:


[Read more…]

Da Best of eLBi 4: Beauty and Brain Hubs

Now that we’re finished covering the foodies, let’s talk about the best eLBi establishments that help feed the mind naman, and then my favorite place that make me feel oh-so-pretty and pampered.

Best Antique and Book Shop

Every true-blue tipid mode bookworm of LB knows this: The Practical Shop!  In high school and college, I have frequented this place almost every other day to hunt the next installment of the Sweet Valley High series I was so addicted to.  And whenever I would see a Sidney Sheldon or Judith McNaught book (that is on every starter bookworm’s list), my heart would go thump, thump, thump.  This place was practically a tambayan for me back then.  Because that place was a portal—the books I find there took me to places!

Through the books I bought there, it’s like I’ve already toured Europe and travelled through time and lived during the Prohibition and the Renaissance.  I also had an in-depth glimpse of what it would be like to be a maiden in love with and wooed by a duke, and even the thrill of being an international con woman.  The aroma of old books that wafted through my nose in that place usually signalled that again, I could escape my reality.  It used to give me a high that only my fellow bibliophiles could understand.  That’s why I see the yellowed, worn out books of best-selling authors as precious works of art, especially when they cost only P5, P10, P15, P20, and P25.  Yes, they were that cheap there at Practical Shop, considering that the closest thing was to buy a preloved book from Book Sale, where a similar book costs about P75.

Even if you’re not a bookworm, you’d still love it here!  It is a treasure trove of knick knacks, antiques and furniture that are sure to give your house a “character” and make it feel homier.

But wait—there’s more:  every 15th and 30th of the month, external sellers have bazaars and garage sales in Practical Shop’s, well, garage.  And the products sold are varied: from preloved and new clothes to healthy juices, hair accessories, toys, etc!


Best Beauty Parlor/Salon

The services of my favorite ever beauty parlor in town are relatively cheap, but every time I’m there I feel like a million bucks!

[Read more…]

Da Best of eLBi 2: My Favorite Restaurants in Los Banos

It used to be that I thought of myself as someone who prioritizes yummy food the least.  Back in college when I was scrimping on my allowance so I could buy the clothes I covet, I used to scoff at people who wear dowdy clothes but spend so much on food.

But I surprised myself when I found myself saying that I’d rather not eat if I don’t like the food, or losing appetite simply because the food bores me.

And then it hit me: during college, I was just blessed to be surrounded by restaurants serving delicious foods that still allowed me to save some of my allowance for clothes.

Fast forward to 2014:  I am already working, and I could even afford to eat in fancy restaurants in Metro Manila.  But you know what?  I often feel foolish for shelling out thousands of pesosesosesoses for foods that are actually a fraction of the cost of their counterparts in eLBi.

So guys, lemme share with you my favourite restaurants that are proudly made in eLBi:

(Note:  This is NOT an advertorial.  The restaurants I am featuring did not ask me to write about them, nor did/will I ask something in return for this.  I just really want to share their yummy foods to my readers)


1. Faustina’s

Faustina’s Restaurant opened in July 2010.  It is actually an homage to the owners’ late grandmother, the Habitos’ Lola Faustina (thus, Faustina’s) who left them with such good memories of family love and food.  With the help of the Habitos’ Interior Designer friend, Rinelle Villareal, they were able to conceptualise and include their Lola Faustina’s memory into the details of the restaurant.



I first started to get curious about Faustina’s when of our teachers at Brain Train was raving about the dishes of this quaint restaurant along Raymundo Gate.  He loved it so much that whenever there’s a reason to celebrate or whenever any one of us would muse out loud as to where to eat, he would always say, “Faustina’s!”

And then one evening, my friends and I found ourselves at Faustina’s.  I asked what the bestseller was, and the waiter suggested the silindro ribs.



It was love at first bite for me!  Everything was perfect—from the grilling to the barbecue sauce to the sukang pinakurat (I love vinegar on barbecue!)…and most especially the price!  This meal that is a symphony to my taste buds only costs P210.  I remember the time when my friends and I decided to have lunch out of the blue.  We went to this restaurant and when we saw that a similar viand cost almost P400, we just looked at each other and knew we were leaving and heading for Faustina’s.  Hahaha!


When you’re craving for something sweet naman, you should order Faustina’s blueberry cheesecake.  I’ve tried it (the silindro ribs was filling, but my appetite swore to me that my tummy still had space), and I loved it!



Other bestsellers (which I have yet to try—I can’t NOT order these two every time I go to Faustina’s eh!) include Faustina’s Pepperoni Pizza, Aussie Beef and Lamb Pies (trivia: the owners grew up in Australia), Spaghetti and Meatbombs, Creamy Shrimp Pasta, and Banana Choco Hazelnut Crepe.


Faustina’s Pizza


Faustina’s Creamy Shrimp Pasta


Truly, Faustina’s is a gem in Los Banos!  But seats at Faustina’s are just like the rarest of gems—Faustina’s is almost always jam-packed, sigh!  (Celine, palakihin n’yo ang restau n’yo please!)



(Faustina’s Restaurant is located at Lola J’s Building, 10278 Ruby St., Los Banos Subdivision, Los Banos Laguna.  Call them at 049 501-1509.  They are open everyday from 11am-8:30pm)

2. Gastronomeats

I have discovered Gastronomeats only recently.  I used to pass by it almost everyday, but I did not give it any second thoughts.  It looks very simple and plain, so I took it for granted. In fact, when my friend Zaira (the same person who brought me to Faustina’s) told me that our next dinner destination would be at Gastronomeats, I had to bite my tongue to keep myself from complaining.  And so there we went.  My doubts about the quality of food was heightened when I saw that even inside, everything was just so simple.  So I was not expecting anything, really.

I ordered their Oompa Liempo:


I was surprised that it actually tasted great!  I was expecting it to taste like our regular liempo at home (which also tastes great, by the way), but no, there was really an “oomph!” Hehehe.  Since it was my first time there and since I was also dining with my closest friends, I tasted what they have ordered.  And I loved them even more!

This is what my friend ordered:


Slabbed (Bacon Steak with eggs and fried rice)


I loved it!  The mild, smoky flavour of the bacon is perfectly complemented by the mild saltiness of the sunny side up eggs and fried rice.  My friend Zaira says it’s her favourite at Gastronomeats.  So the next time I went there with my friend Irvin, I ordered this as well.

However, when I tasted Irvin’s order—spicy liempo—I told myself that it, too, was delicious!

And so I ordered spicy liempo when I went there with Randy and Raviv.  Randy ordered Slabbed (which I got bits and pieces from), and ordered Sausage Fest for Raviv.  Just when I thought I was already confused with what to order next, I also loved Raviv’s Sausage Fest.  Waaaaah!!!

Three visits to Gastronomeats made me realize this: the owners really needed not to overwhelm its patrons with any kind of decoration—heck,  there wast even a tinge of the usual colour red that is said to whet people’s appetites—because the flavours of their meats would cover just about everything!

(Gastronomeats is located along Lopez Avenue, Los Banos, Laguna.  It is just in front of Centtro Mall.  Its contact number is 09175105215.)


3. Bonito’s

I only fully appreciated Bonito’s when we dined at Bonito’s and then at Abe and at Crisostomo only days apart.  That’s because when we dined at Bonito’s, Randy had their Kalderetang Batangas combo meal.  And he loved it a lot.  He was surprised to see that what he had—scrumptious beef “stewed for a long time in a garlic-onion-liver sauce” served with rice and iced tea/lemonade cost only P140!  Yes, P140 only!



Dishes such as this at Abe and at Crisostomo would be well over P300!  And when it comes to taste, Bonito’s is definitely not lacking!

Aside from this caldereta that I am raving so much about, Bonito’s also serves these mouthwatering dishes that I have yet to try (all images lifted from Bonito’s Bar and restaurant Facebook Page):




The best thing about Bonito’s is that it is spacious (relative to other restaurants in eLBi) and can accommodate lots of people.


However, food service is kinda slow.  I guess the staff get rattled because of the volume of people and of the orders that they receive.


(Bonito’s Bar and Restaurant is located at Oregano St. corner Lopez Ave., Demarses Subd, Los Baños, Laguna.  They may be contacted through 049 536 3255 or 09153154521.)



I know that there may be other restaurants in Los Banos that are worthy of being featured here, but I may have not tried eating there yet…feel free to suggest where I should eat next time!  I would surely hate to miss out on anything that proudly made in eLBi!


Next Feature: My favourite street food joints in eLBi!


Ayoko nang maging artista.


I’m saying this because two or three weeks ago, I had treatments done on me at the Weigh Less Center (Mendez Medical Group) at SM Megamall.  And boy were they painfulpainful physically and painful financially!

Remember when I was ranting about my underarms burnt by waxingNaku, it happened again.  Twice pa after that!  So I really swore to myself I’ll have my underarms laseredSobrang nacacahiya talaga mag-sleeveless.  Plus my friend Dr. Sugar Blanco told me how her boyfriend was raving about her underarms not having hair.  She advised me to look for online promos, ‘coz that’s how she was able to have her underarms lasered without breaking the bank.

And then I saw this deal on Ensogo:

mendez medical group underarms ipl

Perfect, di ba?  At our local dermatologist, each IPL session easily costs P3,000!  So this was great.  After all, I’m always in the Metro these days; Mendez Medical has a branch at Megamall, and our condo is near Megamall.  So on Friday last week after my class, I headed to its Megamall branch to inquire.  I had a feeling that I could get the same deal without having to go through Ensogo.  If not, I could easily purchase it online namanBasta, I’d rather clarify all the terms before buying.  So I went.  And, I was right!  I was able to get the same deal they’re offering at Ensogo!  But aside from the Php 3,000 3-in-1 underarm package, I was also greatly “encouraged” to avail of the additional P3,000 for four sessions of blue treatment + diamond peel to remove the “chicken skin” of my underarms daw.

First, my underarms were treated with the whitening cream.  While waiting for the cream to dry, I asked about their sclerotherapy.  See, it’s also on my bucket list—to eradicate my varicose veins and spider veins!  Ever since I gave birth, they’ve started being visible on my legs.  Plus I teach the whole day, and that requires me to be on my feet for long periods of time.  Eh you know how conscious I am about my thunder thighs ‘di ba?  Ngayon na nga lang ako nagkakalakas-loob mag-shorts-shorts, so I certainly do not want to ruin that newfound courage and conviction (hehe) just because of another legs problem.  I can’t just ignore this, because I remember my pretty cousin, Ate Frances, very vividly said this a decade ago:  “Basta ako, hindi ako magsho-shorts ‘pag puro varicose veins ang legs ko!”

The clinic attendant called one of the dermatologists there, a Dr. Panes.  She looked at my legs and estimated that with their Buy 2 Take 1 promo, I’d be spending a huge amount to fully eradicate the unsightly and painful varicose veins.


Napalunok ako.  Here I thought I’d only be spending P3,000 for my underarms.  I said I’ll shelf it for the meantime.

Then I asked about what may be done about my crow’s feet.  Botox daw.  Botox?!? Parang hindi ko kinaya.  Parang sobrang extreme na ng Botox di ba?  Feeling ko, ‘pag ipinagawa ko ‘yun, parang retokada na rin ako.  Because honestly, never akong naging suki ng derma or any beauty clinics.  All my life, I went to a derma less than five times.  One of them was a few days before my wedding when I had a diamond peel.

Then Dr. Joel Mendez came to see me.  He was really nice, despite his status as a celebrity doctor.  He checked my legs and said it was OK naman daw, albeit yun nga, some veins are starting to run through them.  He offered me great sclerotherapy deal—freebies worth around P6,000!  So, GAME!  I got only a fraction of the quoted total sclerotherapy package, para at least ‘yung mga obvious man lang ang matanggal.

2014-05-09 18.19.56

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Wardrobe Diary #55: Pretty in Pink (Feb. 23, 2014)

Hi you all!  I’m so glad to have this time to chat with you again.  If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you probably know I’m “Stressed Drilon” these days.  As in.  No glow ako!  It’s because we’re swamped with work.  Our new Operations Manager and staff are hardworking naman, yet we still have so much load.

stressed drilon

But Randy reminded of the positive side: our being swamped with work means that people trust our services.  And really, I am very grateful for that trust.  In fact, I get very, very upset when we commit a boo-boo.  Every boo-boo stresses me out.  While some people would take such in stride, I would take them very seriously.  As in there are times when I don’t sleep fitfully when I hear a complaint, even when the complaint is unwarranted.

Anyway, part of that heavy load is the fact that we are expanding big-time in Metro Manila this year—our venues there almost doubled from last year (thank you Lord!) Birthday cake  Ergo, Randy and I thought of getting a modest condo unit in the Metro.  That way, we do not have to waste time looking for decent, inexpensive hotels every time we, our teachers and staff when we have teaching loads in the Metro.  A condo unit, we believe, would be a good investment.  Even after the summer we would be able to use it.  Honestly, one of my frustrations in life (frustrations talaga!) is that sawang-sawa na ako sa Festival Mall at Alabang Town Center.  Talaga!  Randy is allergic to the MMDA and to traffic so when we shop it usually is just in Alabang.  But not all blame lies on him:  kahit ako tinatamad just thinking of hurdling a heavy traffic after a tiring pasyal or shopping in the Metro.

Since we were just about a month away from using our future condo, we acted fast and scheduled ocular visits.  Inipon namin lahat ng options on this Sunday, and this was what I wore to our condo hunting:





  • pink and white checkered blouse: Pretty Giraffe
  • shorts: Orange Juice
  • sandals: Aldo
  • bag: Chanel Cambon Medium Pink Tote

Fink na fink baActually I don’t really like pink, but I read somewhere that wearing clothes and accessories that are bright can actually lift our mood.  And in fairness, mukha naman akong fresh sa photos na ‘to.  By the time Randy took those photos, pagod na pagod na kami n’yan ! We were already on the road as early as 7:30 a.m.!

The properties we looked are either located in Mandaluyong and Eastwood, as we were looking for a condo that’s accessible to most of our Metro Manila venues.  Let me show you some of the units we looked at:

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