What's in my beauty bag: Sandra Woo
In celebration of our health and wellness month this October, we ask yoga practitioner and rhythm cycling instructor Sandra Woo about her favourite beauty essentials. If you follow the inspirational fitness lover on Instagram, you'd notice that lithe, intermediate yoga moves aren't just her forte — her envy-inducing glow isn't from layers of makeup, but rather, a well-rounded skincare routine coupled with healthy lifestyle choices. Below, find out more about what beauty products she can't live without along with her secrets to that lit-from-within glow.
1. Please share with us the contents of your beauty bag.
My basic beauty bag which I carry around consists of a few skincare products including Skinsaikel Vitalising Antioxidant Mist, 100% Aloe Vera Gel, Clarins Day-Screen Multi Protection SPF 50, and Blistex Lip Medex.
Other than that, these are the makeup products that I use on a daily basis:
Laneige Pore Control BB Cushion
Shu Uemura Hard 9 Eyebrow Pencil
Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler
M.A.C Cosmetics Prep & Prime Eye Base
Maybelline Gel Eyeliner in Brown
Bobbi Brown Eye Shadow in Saddle
Isehan Heroine Make Mascara
Nyx High Definition Blush in Taupe
Nars Super Orgasm — I use this very sparingly for that barely-there glow
Innisfree Eco Flower Tint
Also, a travel-sized Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay Cologne that comes in handy when I need to smell fresh.
2. What are the top beauty essentials you can't live without, and why?
It used to be my eyebrow pencil but I got microblading done recently, so now I get to shave an extra five minutes off my morning routine. Apart from that, I don't think I can do without mascara and lip balm.
3. One beauty item you're obsessed with now, and why?
I definitely can't live without lip balm. I have so many different lip balms in every bag I have. My favourite is Blistex's Lip Medex for awhile now, and Smith's Rosebud Salve. Clarins Beauty Flash Balm is also a lifesaver for when my skin is looking a little sallow.
4. What was your first experience with makeup?
I can't really remember, but probably some kind of lip tint I scored from the drugstore when I was 13 years old.
5. A favourite form of beauty pampering you love to indulge in?
I love taking the time to do my own facials. Once a week I do a deep pore cleanse which involves a swipe of Stridex Salicylic Acid Pad, Kiehl's Turmeric and Cranberry Seed Masque, followed by a massage with high linoleic acid Sunflower Oil and Grapeseed oil blend, which I wash off with a deep cleansing foam, followed by my regular skincare routine.
My skincare routine for morning and nights vary — this allows me to indulge in different kinds of pampering products. I love that my skin always feels lush and glowy.
6. One piece of beauty advice you won't mind sharing with our readers?
I think it is important to invest time in a good skincare routine that suits your skin type. You don't have to focus on designer brand skincare — look into ingredients and formulations that suit your skin type and build your routine from there.
7. Do you wear anything on your face when you're instructing a class?
I always apply 100% aloe vera gel over my face, so I am not sweating creme moisturisers everywhere. Not forgetting — my eyebrows have to be on fleek. Apart from that I don't have to be wearing anything else on my face.
8. What are a few sweat- and smudge-proof makeup products that you've used and would recommend?
Isehan Heroine Make has a line of very durable mascaras that stay on through hours of sweat and humidity. You will need an oil-based make up remover to get it off though. Shu Uemura's Hard 9 Pencil has never slipped off my face too!
9. What are your tips on getting glowing skin?
Beauty routine wise, it helps to wear minimal makeup as much as you can (that irony!) It definitely allows your skin to breathe and radiate from within. Also, don't forget about SPF — absolutely necessary to protect skin against sun rays that can dull and dehydrate the skin.
I always make sure to stay hydrated, and to minimise my sugar intake. Having a good dietary routine helps too — fruits and leafy greens are essential for healthy skin, and a healthy body overall.
I think it's important to be aware of your allergens — chicken, dairy, anything that might flare you up. Just so that you know to only consume those occasionally or in very small doses.
10. What is your daily skincare regime like?
In the morning I cleanse my face with Cerave Hydrating Cleanser, then apply Thayers Alcohol-free Cucumber Witch Hazel Toner followed with Hada Labo Hyaluronic Acid Lotion. I use 100% Aloe Vera Gel and an SPF of my choice (depending on the day). For a little pick-me-up, I like Skinsaikel Vitalising Antioxidant Mist.
In the evening, I remove my makeup with Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil and cleanse it with any foaming deep cleanser (I'm not picky). I'll pat my skin down with either toners: Stridex Salicylic Acid Maximum, The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution, or Thayers from my morning routine; followed by Hada Labo Hyaluronic Acid Lotion. Serums wise, I switch between The Ordinary's Advanced Retinoid 2% or Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA.
For a good dose of moisturisation, I go for Skinsaikel Hydrating Night Cream or 100% Aloe Gel (I love this because it is absolutely non-comedogenic), depending on how my skin is feeling. Lastly I apply Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate if my skin needs some saving, or indulge in a facial oil such as Aesop's Fabulous Face Oil or 100% Food Grade Argan Oil to lock hydration into my skin.
11. What is the most memorable beauty faux pas you've committed?
Overplucked brows! I think one of the most underrated but equally important beauty tip is to leave your brows alone. Groom them professionally if you can, but absolutely do not thin them. I had them threaded too much one time so I didn't have much brows for awhile. Your brows frame your face so it's essential to keep them tidy, not thin and sparse.
12. What is your life motto that you stand by?
Just because you feel like crap, doesn't mean you have to look like crap. Pick yourself up, brush your teeth, put on nice perfume, get your head together, and own the day.
You can follow Sandra Woo on Instagram here.