Test Drive Diaries: Kathryn Bernardo x Happy Skin
What a full face of #KathxHappySkin looks like after 12 hours with no touchups
The return of the gloss, the resurgence of glitter, the rise of the draping technique: 2018 sure has spawned a lot of exciting beauty trends. But the most notable thus far has little to do with the looks that dominate the season, per se, and a lot more to do with buzz created by beauty brands: We’re talking about the abrupt boom of local celebrity makeup collaborations.
The who’s who in Philippine entertainment, once the canvases painted on by famed makeup artists, are taking on more creative roles in the image creation arena. That’s the new trend. Following in the footsteps of international stars like Kylie Jenner, Rihanna and Jessica Alba, these celebs are now actively crafting their own products. The latest to make this move into the beauty space is Kathryn Bernardo, one of the country’s most sought-after actresses and the first collaborator of Happy Skin Cosmetics’ all-new diffusion line called Generation Happy Skin.
“In a generation where everyone wishes to have their own makeup line, it’s still so important to intentionally want your makeup line to be a reminder of what is good. And that’s what I love about Kathryn Bernardo,” shared Happy Skin founder Rissa Mananquil-Trillo on Instagram. “Deemed the voice of her generation, especially after how her talk influenced the youth at the Youth Sustainable Goals Summit last year organized by the United Nations, there’s no better or bigger voice for today’s generation than Kath Bernardo. There’s really nothing more beautiful than a pretty woman backed with a kind heart. No one ever asked her or told her to do so but she chooses to raise awareness, speak up, or do a small act for what she is passionate about. With less, she is really more.”
A pressed powder here, a lip and cheek tint there, the six-piece premier collection of Generation Happy Skin is a refreshing take on beauty basics. It’s all-encompassing, but straightforward and wonderfully uncomplicated. “We all want something that’s easy to use and effortless,” said Bernardo, who was consistently hands-on in the two years it took to create the line. “You don’t need a lot to look beautiful.”
Now that we know the collection looks good on paper, it’s time to see how it performs in real life. Ready to meet Kathryn’s Happy Skin and see how it wears in 12 hours?
Clocking In: A Full Face of Kath x Happy Skin at 9AM
Could it be? A dupe for the K-Palette Eyebrow Liner at practically half the price? I was intrigued. The Perfect Brows Long-Lasting Liquid Pen was exactly like the cult classic: easy to use and great for 5-minute brows. The felt-tip applicator allows you to create strokes that mimic fine hair, so the final look is full but natural-looking. While it is buildable, I learned that the Perfect Brows Long-Lasting Liquid Pen doesn’t play nice with other products. I initially thought I could fill in the spot on my right eyebrow (that has sparse hair because of a scar) with a eyebrow pencil after drawing on brows with the liquid pen and leaving it to dry, but this left me with a clumpy, crumbly mess. Attempting to blend everything with a spoolie didn’t help either. Lesson learned: do not wait for the product to dry completely before going in with a spoolie—and only a spoolie…no other product—to groom the brows and blend the product where necessary.
When it came to upper lashes, the Extra Drama Volumizing Mascara glided on like a dream. The smooth, lightweight formula worked extremely well with the type of wand (thin and narrow with short bristles) this comes with: it separated my lashes, coated them with just enough product as well as lengthened them. I was pleasantly surprised to find that if you use the wiggle-and-glide motion (wiggle the wand side to side at the base of your lash and then bring the wand up), you tightline the upper lash line with no trouble at all. Since doing this lets you achieve thicker-looking lashes, it’s a win. It’s what the product promises to do.
Now, the tricky part: I always make it a point to apply mascara on my lower lashes as well (call it a force a habit) and realized the Extra Drama Volumizing Mascara is not the ideal product for that. While I did appreciate the incidental tightlining of my upper lash line, it did not have the same effect on my lower lashes. I assumed the wand would be easy to maneuver with, but wound up with mascara transferring onto the skin underneath my eyes. The takeaway: Since the wand has short bristles so close to the base of the wand, dealing with shorter lashes requires a lighter, steadier hand.
On another note, even after a considerable waiting period following the first coat, the mascara began to clump when I went in for seconds. My lashes began sticking to one another and product accumulated at the tips. Not a good easy, breezy everyday makeup look…unless, of course, you’re trying to achieve spider lashes.
What caught my attention right off the bat was how small the container of this is! It’s cute and travel size and it’s great how this can easily be tossed into a makeup bag for touch-ups within the day. When it came to application, I was surprised at the pigment this gave off. A little goes a long way and blending is key.
As a single pressed compact with no applicator bundled with it, this is a product you can have fun with and apply freehand if you’re keen. For the test drive, I applied this right above the apples of my cheeks with a retractable kabuki brush for a natural-looking flush.
You cannot go wrong with a little tint and I’ve yet to meet one that disappoints. This one is no exception. A natural-looking glow? Check. A sun-kissed rosy finish? Check. Applies in no time? Check. At just P299, the Kiss & Bloom Water Lip & Cheek Tint is an absolute steal and would hoard this if I could!
I initially drew on three dots on my cheeks using the sponge tip applicator before patting down with my ring finger to blend, but found that it left a stain right where I applied the product. The alternative method works much better: apply the product directly onto the ring finger and then pat it on. The tint becomes easier to move around and blend and you aren’t left with streaks or spots on your face. I applied this on top of the bridge of my nose and a little above my cheekbones (the high points of the face where the light hits it) for a just-got-some-sun finish.
It was an excellent move for Bernardo to zero in on realistically wearable shades with this kind of formula for her first collection. For one, this just ensures that, should the lipstick fade throughout the day and you aren’t free for a touchup, your lips still look great. No matter how much or how little of the product is left, it looks deliberate (almost like a lip stain). I think that’s one factor often overlooked when it comes to lipstick: does it look flattering even when it fades away? Or is it something you will have to be conscious about throughout the day? Some longwearing lipstick brands may be undefeated when it comes to staying power, but tend to crack and peel off like a bad paint job if not watched or if you don’t prep your lips accordingly. That’s the other win for the My Lips But Better Ultra Matte Lippie: it glides on like butter and feels just as buttery soft on lips for as long as it’s on. It may have a powdery matte finish, but it’s non-drying. If anything, it’s like wearing tinted lip balm.
The Six-Hour Mark
So far, so good: The Perfect Brows Long-Lasting Liquid Pen is holding up well and proving to be as smudge-proof as it claims to be. Oily eyebrows have never been an issue, but I did have to pat down mattifying powder over my eyebrows at one point in the afternoon.
The dried-up clumps that were sitting on my eyelashes are now sitting on my face. In hindsight, I really should have stuck to a single coat. The two I applied, with the aforementioned clumps in its aftermath, may be weighing the product down, thus the flaking.
The Instant Glow Longwear Powder Blush has faded a considerable amount, but there is still product there. In fact, it’s blending in nicely with the tint I applied earlier.
This one’s the other fighter in the lot. So far, it’s living up to its claims. The Kiss & Bloom Water Lip & Cheek Tint is still as pigmented as when I applied it in the morning.
As expected, the My Lips But Better Ultra Matte Lippie was no match for my lunch, two cups of coffee and habits as a serial lip licker.
Half a Day Without Touchups
Save for patches here and there, this product is true to its word. I’d say this can stay on for six to nine hours before a touchup is needed. The light feather-like pen brush did help me draw, shape and fill in my eyebrows. However, here’s something I neglected to spot when I applied this earlier: the Natural Brown shade has a warm undertone and looks reddish when inspected closely (or when the rest of the product falls away and your naturally darker brows show through). When it comes to brow products, best brown for ladies and gents with black or dark brown hair is a grayish chocolate brown. Truthfully though, I’m willing to overlook this for the sake of the price of the product.
The Extra Drama Volumizing Mascara’s claim to fame is it “gives you dramatic yet natural-looking lashes” and “its volumizing and clump-free Korean-make formula lets your lashes stay up all day.” I would call Happy Skin’s bluff on the bit about the clump-free formula, but again, it might be my incessant need to layer mascara that got in the way today. The verdict’s still out on this one.
Not a smidgeon of this in sight at this point. I do, however, still really like this product. It’s a win for me since it’s non-drying and did not look patchy or flakey as the day rolled by. Reapplication with the tiny compact is a small burden. I’d say that for those with combination skin, the Instant Glow Longwear Powder Blush will need retouching after five to six hours.
The obvious winner. It survived the whole 12 hours. I am so impressed by the staying power of this tint and, again, by its wallet-friendly retail price.
If this wasn’t peddled as a long-lasting lipstick, I would absolutely love it. Of its two claims, “lasts for long, hydrates for long,” it at least fulfills the latter. It “gives an ultra-matte finish while keeping lips hydrated” and “helps replenish moisture and prevent your puckers from cracking and chapping.” Something ladies who only desire to wear lipstick at certain times of the day anyway (for an important meeting, a presentation with a client and others) surely won’t mind. It’s a small price to pay for healthy, well-moisturized lips, too.
After all’s been said and done, there are still a few questions to answer: Was it timely? Yes. Lucrative? Absolutely. It was also very smart. The hype surrounding the #KathxHappySkin launch easily proves that. More importantly, however, it shows, that this collection was borne out of Bernardo’s desire to shift the dialogue on beauty. It’s an invitation to revel in simplicity, challenging beauty girls like myself to pare down my makeup routine and achieve more with less. Everything in KathxHappySkin is easy, fuss-free and, in keeping with what Happy Skin stands for, skin-loving.
You can shop the Kathryn Bernardo x Happy Skin collection online at The Happy Skin official website and on Zalora, BeautyMNL and Lazada. Rather head to a Happy Skin store? Scroll through to find a store near you!
Alabang Town Center Upper Ground Floor Alabang Town Center, Alabang-Zapote Road, Alabang, Muntinlupa City
Glorietta 3 2/F Glorietta 3 Mall, Ayala Avenue corner Pasay Road, Ayala Center, Makati
Greenbelt 5 2/F Greenbelt 5 Mall, Ayala Center, Makati City
Rockwell 2/F Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center, Lopez Drive, Barangay Poblacion, Makati City
SM Aura Premier 2/F SM Aura Premier Mall, McKinley Parkway corner 26th Street, Bonifacio Global City Taguig City
Megamall 2/F SM Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas Avenue, Mandaluyong City
Robinsons Magnolia 2/F Robinsons Magnolia Doña Hemady Street corner Aurora Boulevard, New Manila, Quezon City
Ayala Malls The 30th G/F Ayala Malls The 30th 30 Meralco Avenue, Ortigas Center, Pasig City
UP Town Center G/F UP Town Center Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City
TriNoma Mall G/F TriNoma Mall North Avenue corner EDSA, Quezon City
SM North EDSA Upper Ground Floor SM City North EDSA North Avenue corner EDSA, Quezon City
SM City Clark G/F SM City Clark M.A. Roxas Avenue, Barangay Malabanias, Clark Freeport, Angeles City, Pampanga
SM City Marilao G/F SM City Marilao, McArthur Highway, Barangay Ibayo, Marilao, Bulacan
SM City Cebu Upper Ground Floor SM City Cebu, Juan Luna Avenue corner A. Soriano Jr. Avenue, North Reclamation Area, Cebu City
Art Alexandra Lara