— Valerie Lim

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I remember a post on Kenny Sia that told of the 28 things he did when he was 28.

Inspired by that, I have decided to write about the 28 notable things that has happened in the past one year since my last birthday. 28 may not be a huge milestone on the calendar (unlike 18 or 21 or even 30), but I’m at a quite interesting and fledgling stage of my life and finding a direction after the pageant.

First on the list…

1. Started running Greedy Chimp.

Greedy Chimp

My first business venture came about by chance. I was presented with this opportunity to take over the day to day running of business just a couple of months ago and it has been nothing but exciting. I have had limited experience with running my own business so stepping into this role has been challenging and very interesting; the learning curve to running a start-up has been very steep. As I have to do everything myself, it can feel like I’m being buried under with work sometimes…. Literally! Just look at the picture! ;)

But I really enjoy the fact that I learn something new every day. On top of that, I have met so many inspiring people who are great at what they do and they constantly inspire me. It’s still settling in when I tell people I’ve started my own business, but I know this won’t be my last. ;)

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2. Coached and shared about grooming and deportment on a LIVE cable show.

Academy Fantasia Singapore Table Etiquette

Academy Fantasia Singapore

Academy Fantasia Table Etiquette

Thanks to my experience with pageants, I was invited by StarHub and Ocean Butterflies to help train a group of budding singers in a reality TV show. Academy Fantasia is very much like Big Brother, America’s Next Top Model and American Idol rolled into one. The contestants stay in a house for about a month and train on a daily basis for singing, dancing, personal presentation, styling etc. Every week they perform in a concert in front of an audience and judges who determine if they will stay for another week. Because they are on camera 24/7 and the show is live, the pressure can be quite high.

I came in once a week to help them with their catwalks, stage presentation, makeup and styling. It was also the first time I had to teach all of that in Mandarin.

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3. Hosted the SK-II It Guy and It Girl event.

SK-II Singapore Isetan

SK-II Utt Sara Wee

SK-II Isetan Singapore

SK-II It Factor Utt Sara Wee

SK-II Singapore

Aside from coaching on LIVE TV, I also got the opportunity to host. This again was a new experience and adventure for me. Not only was it one of my first few times hosting, I had to host and present veterans in the industry like former MTV VJ Utt and lead singer of 53A, Sara Wee. Can you say pressure already?!

The It Guy and It Girl, however, were very nice and encouraging and the event went off without a hitch. ;)

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4. Walked with a fashion runway with notable models including Vivian Ong, Sheila Sim, Ivy Chung and Viola Tan.

SK-II Stempower Launch

Working with SK-II has presented loads of opportunities. Thanks to my involvement with SK-II in the Foundation Got or Not Challenge and Clozette x SK-II video tutorials, I was invited back to walk in the fashion runway for the launch of the anti-aging SK-II Stempower Essence.

Love, Bonito was the fashion sponsor and all the models were decked out in their stylish wardrobe. I have had the pleasure of working closely with the Love, Bonito team who kindly sponsor my daily outfits and I have nothing but love for their clothing. <3

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5. Attended the first ever Social Star Awards held in Singapore at the Marina Bay Sands.

Social Star Awards was a celebration of all social media platforms. Being a social media addict *ahem user of social media – Instagram, Twitter, Facebook – it was quite amazing to see stars of social media fame being celebrated. It was also signaled the fact that social media has now become an integral part of our lives and how we can harness its power to amplify our reach.

It was also mind-blowing to see Jeremy Piven, Jessica Alba, Ryan Higa, Carly Rae Jepsen and LEGENDARY PSYYYYY perform LIVE on stage! /mind-blown

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6. Featured in the newspapers with my lovely family for the National Family Council’s Family Day In.

National Family Council Family Day In Straits Times

My family has always been very close. Whether it’s family staycations, National Family Celebrations at the Singapore Flyer, or regular dinners, we enjoy doing things together.

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7. Appeared in Seventeen Magazine for a beauty tutorial feature.

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8. Celebrated our one year anniversary with a very special man. <3

Happy Anniversary

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9. Traveled to California and visited the Huntington Library, Laguna beach, Malibu, Pepperdine University and Santa Monica for the first time in my adult life.

Montage Beach Resort

California Main Beach

California Huntington Library Memoirs of a Geisha

Pepperdine University

I also got the opportunity to spend time with the darling-est little boy who calls me “Ah-yi”. :)

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10. Attended Labour Day in Boracay

Boracay Beach

Boracay Beach

Boracay Labour Day

Boracay White House Party

Boracay White House Party

Labour Day in Boracay is absolute madness. There are non-stop parties and loads of hotties. But Boracay is also known for their stunning scenery. Their beautiful beaches and crystal clear waters are a must-see!

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11. SONGKRAN MOFOS!

Biggest public water fight in Thailand. The only opportunity to randomly shoot people with water guns and get away with it. :D I’m glad I survived it and definitely want to go back for more!

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12. Visited Bohol and their signature chocolate hills

Chocolate Hills Bohol Philippines

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13. Re-visited the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand.

Grand Palace Bangkok Thailand

I can’t even remember the last time I was there at the Grand Palace. This time I got to pay respects to the Jade Buddha.

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14. Attended the engagement party of a fellow Miss Universe contestant, Shamcey Supsup, in Manila.

Lloyd Lee Shamcey Supsup Engagement News

I also got to meet the other Miss Universe Philippines winners from previous years. It was a little fan girly to meet Venus Raj, Janine Tugonon and Ariella Arida.

Lloyd Lee Shamcey Supsup Engagement

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15. New York with Miss Earth Scotland 2009, Sarah Finlay.

Sarah Finlay Valere Lim NYC

Despite distance and time differences, I met up with one of my fellow contestants from the Miss Earth pageant in 2009. We both traveled halfway across the world to meet in the middle. When I met her and caught up with her, it was as though we had never left each other’s side. Miss Earth friendships last forever.

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16. Got swanky in Long Island, New York.

Long Island New York

Swan Club on Long Island was soooo pretty! We attended a wedding there in Spring.

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17. Fired a live carbine/rifle.

Artemis Manila Philippines

The experience was earth shattering and soul shaking. The recoil and sound from the AR-15 was enough to unnerve me for the first couple of hours. But it also made me realise how fragile life is and how we really have the ability to choose between life and death.

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18. And then shot clay pigeons in skeet shooting.

Skeet Shooting

The skills required of skeet shooting is entirely different from firing at a static target. The takeaway lesson from skeet shooting was this: when the trigger is in your control, focus and trust your instinct. When you know it’s time to fire, JUST DO IT. Don’t think. Because when you do, you miss hitting the target.

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19. Plunged underwater to the depths… without a PADI license.

I dived with the sharks without a PADI license… at the Underwater World Singapore. It was a daunting experience and I must admit I was freaked out by how slowly I moved underwater. Because all the other sea creatures around me moved effortlessly, it left me feeling vulnerable knowing I was at a disadvantage. I am now determined to learn how to dive properly and eventually conquer the seas.

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20. Embarked on my fitness journey with Celebrity Fitness and am in the best shape of my life.

Celebrity Fitness Singapore

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21. Opened the Celebrity Fitness Downtown East with CEO Martin

Celebrity Fitness Downtown East

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22. Ran my very first 10km in 71 minutes.

NTUC Run350

For a person who’s never run in a race like that before, I would say it’s a pretty awesome timing. I certainly had to push my physical boundaries and dig deep to finish the race in good timing but am looking to do another 10k, hopefully the one in Ang Kor Wat at the end of the year.

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23. Embarked on my fashion journey and got my very first luxury bag from Ritzbo – the Saint Lauren Cabas Chyc

Ritzbo Singapore Saint Lauren Cabas Chyc

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24. Also, fell in love with this baby.

Proenza Schouler PS1

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25. And was bedazzled by this pretty little thing I got from Ritzbo at the Audi Fashion Festival.

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26. Learned how to be more stylish from fashion icon, Ines Ligron.

Ines Ligron Singapore Beauty Talk

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27. Gambled in a casino.

Resorts World Manila

I have never actually played in a casino before. Mainly because I hate losing. But we played a version of Blackjack, Pontoon, to be precise… and won!

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28. Be blessed to be surrounded by so many inspiring and caring people and sponsors. :)

Birthday Cake

I have been very lucky this year to be blessed with kind sponsors who see me through and support me when I have events and numerous social engagements. Without them, I would not be able to look perfectly made up and well-dressed all the time.

In particular, Love, Bonito and Klarra for their stylish outfits, Ritzo for their luxury bags and shoes, Jipaban for their accessories, Salon Vim for always styling my hair right, my fitness sponsors who keep me in the best shape, Celebrity Fitness, Nuffnang Singapore for always taking care of me and hooking me up with good gigs and brand new nail sponsor The Nail Artelier for their beautiful work with my nails.

Aside from that, thank you to all my loyal readers, friends and family who always show so much love and concern.

Thank you all for a wonderful year and cheers to another wiser and more beautiful one ahead.

Happy 28th birthday to me!

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They say no other love is like a mother’s love. She is selfless, giving and always knows best. And thus, on Mother’s Day we try with the greatest effort to shower Mom with gestures that reflect our affection and gratitude.

I remember when I had just started working, I loved to gift my Mom with all sorts of presents. She used to do the same for me when I was growing up and it was only natural I show her love in the same way.

Since then, I’ve graduated from surprising her with a handmade chocolate bouquet to wanting to show her the world. Or a little bit of my world, at least. By that, I mean to share experiences with my nearest and dearest mother. Shared experiences are gifts that last forever and it is exactly that which makes them so precious and unique. So, if you’re looking for special ways to spend quality time with your Mom, gift her the gift of time, sharing fun adventures and experiences. I promise you will have loads to talk about and laugh at afterwards for years.

The list I’ve put together is great because they are items that are not limited to just the Mother’s Day weekend. You have plenty of time to pamper Mom till the end of May. But if you prefer to keep it simple, fret not, I’ve included some very pretty products in this 2013 Mother’s Day Gift Idea list.

For the fabulous Mom
Get her hair pampered and treated at Salon Vim!

Arimino Caretrico Privy treatment

For all the times Mom has washed our hair and cared for our tresses, it is now her turn to receive some tender loving care. I would suggest you treat her tresses to Salon Vim’s brand new Arimino Caretrico Privy treatment. This treatment is ideal for all hair types. I particularly benefitted from it because my hair was extremely dry from 3 days under direct UV exposure.

Salon Vim Arimino Privy Hair Treatment

Look Ma, what a difference! From tangled split ends and uneven color, to lovely flowing picture perfect hair!

The Arimino Caretrico Privy treatment  is a simple salon-care system that encompasses 3 steps. The first step is a shampoo using the Arimino Caretrico Privy Gentle Wash PRO. The moisture-rich shampoo is the necessary step before the other 2 treatments because it helps your hair retain more of the upcoming nutrients. And of course, a therapeutic head massage by the very skilled Salon Vim staff is certainly an added bonus! ;)

Following that, the Enrich Serum nourishes from inside the hair follicle to repair damage. Coconut oil is the key ingredient in this step. Because it easily seeps into the hair and has a high affinity for protein, it is this serum that feeds damaged hair its much needed nutrients.

Finally, the Caretrico Privy Hold Cream hair treatment is applied to lock in the nourishment from step 2. It seals the moisture inside the hair and also smoothens hair surface. Then, we go for gold by having this egg shaped machine lock it all in.

Salon Vim Arimino Privy Hair Treatment

Look Ma! I’m an astronaut!

Salon Vim Arimino Privy Treatment Results

A full before and after treatment shot! The Arimino Caretrico Privy treatment really does wonders. Plus the effects of the treatment last up to 1 week! Your mom will love her hair as much as she loves you for taking her to Salon Vim!

Salon Vim May Promo

It gets better! For the month of May, the first 100 blog readers to quote “Valerie Lim/dweam” at Salon Vim will get a 30% off this luxurious treatment. No matter the length of your hair, treatment price after discount starts from S$120. Slots are filling up fast, so make Mom an appointment now to avoid disappointment.

Salon Vim is located at 313 Somerset #04-07 and Bugis, 235 Victoria Street.

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For the Mom who’s always got a spring in her step 
Send her walking through the meadows of Crabtree and Evelyn’s Somerset Meadow collection

Crabtree and Evelyn Singapore Somerset Meadow Collection

Crabtree and Evelyn is well loved by Moms everywhere because of their lovely beauty products, delicate fragrances. The newest Crabtree and Evelyn collection – Somerset Meadow – is bound to put a smile Mom’s face. I know I grinned like a Cheshire Cat when I took a deep breath of the fresh spring fragrance.

Crabtree and Evelyn Singapore Somerset Meadow Collection

Inspired by spring flowers and invoking the imagery of a dew-kissed meadow, the Somerset Meadow collection owes its fresh fragrance to the delicate water lily and ivy extracts.

Crabtree and Evelyn Singapore Somerset Meadow Collection

There are 5 products in the entire Crabtree and Evelyn product line – hand cream, gel perfume, eau de toilette, shower gel and body lotion. Every product will leave you highly refreshed and smelling very pretty, and Mom will be happy she taught you to clean up well!

Crabtree and Evelyn Singapore Somerset Meadow Collection

The Crabtree and Evelyn Somerset Meadow collection is now available at all Crabtree and Evelyn Singapore stores.

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For the daredevil Mom
Take her diving under the water! Diving is one activity for all adult ages and fitness levels, so give the gift of experience the thrill of floating under water together!

At The Underwater World Singapore Dive at Sentosa, you’ll both be able to explore the depths and make some new friends with the little creatures underwater, even without a diving certification.

Swim side by side with the sharks and stingrays and watch how they effortlessly glide by you. Accompanied by a professional dive master, he’ll take you guys through the procedures of how to breathe underwater and then lead you on a tour of the unknown. You’ll be able to spend some quality time with Mom in unfamiliar waters (pun intended)!

The Underwater World Singapore Dive with the Sharks package is S$120/person and also gets you access to Underwater World Singapore and Dophin Lagoon (to Swim with the Dophins is S$170/person).

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For the scent-sational Mom
Get her scent profiled at Penhaligon’s ION Orchard

Penhaligons Singapore ION Orchard Address

I love fragrances, and I love gifting fragrances to people around me. It makes me happy when people smell nice. Haha. This Mother’s Day if you’re unsure what type of fragrances Mom likes, get her scent profiled at Penhaligon’s Singapore.

It’s been over 140 years since the doors of the first Penhaligon’s emporium opened in London. This quintessentially British perfumery has now opened its first boutique in Singapore at ION Orchard. Its second boutique will soon at Marina Bay Sands Singapore.

Penhaligon's Singapore ION Orchard

The perfumes of Penhaligon’s are certainly fit for royalty. The perfumery holds two long-standing Royal Warrants; from His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh (granted 1956) and from His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales (granted 1988). As the queen of our hearts, Mom deserves only the best.

Penhaligon's Singapore ION Orchard Scent Profiling

Scent profiling is easy: walk into Penhaligon’s Singapore and let the very nice-looking and friendly perfume expert, Mike, help you.

I got my scent profiled a couple of weeks ago at the ION Orchard store. Mike started off by asking a couple of questions about the types of smells I normally like. And then he went on to try and understand the smells I DIDN’T like. Once I was done rattling, he quickly picked up a few bottles of perfumes from Penhaligon’s extensive range and introduced them to my nose.

Penhaligon's Singapore Scent Profiling

There were smells I instantly took to, while some others required a second sniff. Each time I gave the nod of approval, Mike would introduce another perfume of the same family to gain a better understanding of my actual scent profile.

We went through about 2 or 3 rounds of this exercise, and I went through over 10 fragrances that each had different characters and stories to tell.

Penhaligon's Singapore Peoneve Eau de Parfum

Eventually, Mike hit the nail on the head – I had a penchant for fresh, clean, floral smells, so we made a list of my favourites. The Elizabethan Rose, Lily of the Valley, Artemisia and Peoneve were top 4 on the list, but I could only pick one. Because I already owned 2 out of the 4 fragrances, I ended up going home this time with the sophisticated and charming Peoneve eau de parfum.

Penhaligon's Singapore Ladies Fragrance Collection

But you don’t always have to go home with just one fragrance. If Mom can’t decide, just pick up one of these Ladies’ Fragrance Gift Sets. It has 4 different eau de parfums and she’ll be spoilt for choice. I know I would be because it has 3 of my favourite perfumes in it! Whooop!

Penhaligon’s ION Orchard is located at #03-16 at ION Orchard Singapore.

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I hope these suggestions have been helpful. Here’s wishing all wonderful moms a Happy Mother’s Day. Especially to my dearest mom. Thank you for being a constant source of support and the best teacher anyone could ever have. For all the lessons in life you’ve imparted to me, I thank you for making me the person I am today. Happy Mother’s Day, mommy! I love you.

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I love getting my hair coloured (especially when the roots start to show). I usually keep my hair a shade of brown with highlights so when I recently changed my hair color at Salon Vim, Gary chose an “automated coloring” technique for me. He highlighted the top part – near the crown of the head – and left the bottom a darker shade to create a sense of more voluminous hair.

Salon Vim

What was truly unique about the color Gary chose this time was the fact it had subtle tones of purple in it! When you look closely, you’ll see the purple gives the hair a radiant glow!

Salon Vim

Salon Vim always takes utmost care to treat my hair when they color it. This time, the color treatment was followed by a L’Oreal Mythic Oil treatment. The particular treatment that was chosen for me was the Nourish and Protect – a three step process that was designed to rejuvenate and care for colored hair.

L'Oreal Mythic Oil Nourish and Protect

Salon Vim L'Oreal Mythic Oil Treatment

The three step process also included an energy massage to purify the scalp, cleanse it and then treat the hair. Good hair growth starts from the scalp. So once the scalp is clean and healthy, nutrient uptake to the hair strands is more effective! And honestly, when someone does a head massage for you to keep your hair in tip top condition, please keep treating my hair!

Salon Vim L'Oreal Mythic Oil

So, the big question is: why is Mythic Oil so good for the hair? Well, it is chock full of 7 precious oils from nourishing ingredients that will protect and treat your hair, giving it shine and luster.

L'Oreal Mythic Oil 7 Wonders

The treatment left my hair smooth, soft and light to the touch. And till this day, no split ends! I used to have terrible split ends from coloring my hair, but I love how Salon Vim always protects my hair with fantastic treatments keeping it healthy! Thank you so much.

L'Oreal Mythic Oil Energy Massage

I usually go to the one in 313 Somerset, but they’ve got a new branch located at Bugis now! Congratulations on the new branch, Salon Vim!

Salon Vim is located at:

Salon Vim @ 313 Orchard Road
313 @ Somerset
#04-07/08/09
Telephone: 6884 7757 / 6884 7767

Salon Vim @ Bugis
235 Victoria street
Singapore 188027

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For the longest time, I’ve had long hair. Sure it’s pretty much standard protocol when you’re competing in an international beauty pageant. Whether or not your hair’s real (extensions hello!), as long as you had hair that Rapunzel would be proud of, you’re pretty much set.

Singapore Beauty Blog

I’m not complaining about having long hair; I loved all the crazy, sexy things you could do with it. But when I took up swimming as part of my new weight management program, something in the water told me that it was time to get a fresh new look. Split and dry ends were not the trend this 2012, and might possibly never be in years to come.

I’ve been wanting to chop my hair for the longest time but never really had the guts to go fully short. IT’S SCARY HAVING A TERRIBLE SHORT HAIR CUT! Yall know how crucial it is to have a good hairstylist cut your hair short for you. We’ll all been to that one salon that messed your hair up really badly and made you go OMG WTF.

Because I’ve seen other bloggers who’ve worked with Salon Vim by Chez Vous, when they approached me to be one of their ambassadors, I said “YES ME WANT!! Why yes, that would be very nice. Thank you very much.”

Salon Vim Singapore

Heidi Klum’s bob has always been the look I wanted. And sitting in the chair that day at Salon Vim, I was excited yet nervous. I may LIKE the look on Heidi, but it might not be something I could work with. If that hairstyle turned out horrendous on me, could I stick all the ends that were cut off back onto my head? I was cutting AT LEAST half of my old hair length off!

But Gary, head stylist of Salon Vim, was absolutely nice and reassuring. He looked through the visual I presented, consulted with me the exact hair style I wanted before proceeding to do any damage to my already damaged hair.

What impressed me most was the amount of detail Gary put into taking care of my hair. No thanks to chlorine from the swimming pool, my hair was as dry as the desert. Ironic how all the dryness came from the water. To help restore the health of my hair, he did a keratin treatment before another treatment, then he worked his magic. Snip snip snip and soon, TADAH!

Salon Vim Hair

NEW SHORTER LENGTH!

But Salon Vim wasnt finished yet. Drying my hair on “Medium heat” (what did I tell you about paying attention to details?), Gary decided that a natural perm at the ends near the front of the face would do nicely to frame my face. PLUS, that also meant I would never have to intentionally use a straighter to iron my hair out. Such a simple but clever idea!

Salon Vim

Just by drying it, without touching the ends, my hair is perfect all the time! Yey! I’m totally loving the new shoulder length. Absolutely refreshing! Now, should I go EVEN shorter, layer it up and maybe even do a Halle Berry? Hahaha. What do you think? Cant wait to go back!

Address:
Salon Vim
313 Orchard Road
313 @ Somerset
#04-07/08/09
Telephone: 6884 7757 / 6884 7767

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