Every year, I take part in an annual secret gift exchange on Emakemeup. On the board, this exchange of beauty goodies is affectionately known as Merry EMMU or MEMMU, for short.
Similar to a Secret Santa gift exchange, every MEMMU participant is assigned a pal (or two, depending on how many exchanges you opt to do) who does not know who her sender would be. This exercise is no mere feat – the coordinator has to match everyone suitably and play the role of middleperson in conveying messages and answering queries regarding the recipients.
We first decide how much we would like to spend (we are usually given two amount choices). Next, we purchase beauty goodies, as well as suitable extras, after finding out more about our pal’s preferences through online polls and from a mandatory questionnaire that contains her wishlist. Sometimes, we have to do a little board sleuthing. :) Finally, we pack everything nicely and send our packages on their merry way!
The element of surprise heightens the thrill and joy, when an MEMMU package is received. I’ve been thoroughly surprised more than once by a pal’s identity…and her unerring choice of products for me! :)
I’ve done this for close to ten years and every year, it brings me joy to make up a package for my secret pal. Last year, my pal was named Courtney, so I created an acrostic package – a gift based on the letters in her name.
Oh, The Cheek Of It
Toes & Fingers, Fingers & Toes
Eat, Drink & Be Merry
Your Little One
- Kose Fasio Eye Color in C2
This Fasio palette looks simple but the colours go on beautifully. A medley of wearable neutrals, these are wonderful for layering, all-over application or a simple day-time eye.
- Kanebo Kate Dual Carat in GD-1
The Dual Carat range from Kanebo Kate is one of my sparkly favourites – I own them all! :)
- VOV Castledew Color Shot Eyes 4 in GD240 Mystic Gold
A veritable cousin of Jill Stuart, the princessy packaging and gem-like pans make the Color Shot Eyes absolutely appealing. Look closely and you will see multicoloured shimmer, much like that in the Jill Stuart eye shadow palettes.
- Kanebo T’estimo Frame Impact Eyes in 04
One of the prettiest palettes from this sadly-discontinued line, this stunner with a pigmented gel liner, iridescent overspray and fine shimmer is both versatile and sophisticated. Don’t be fooled by the seemingly light colours – this palette is more intense than it looks.
- Pupa 4 Eyes Palette Multipurpose Eye Shadow Palette in 03
Like rich blocks of chocolate in varying hues, the colours in this neutral palette are pigmented and perfect for people who love strong colours and a shimmer-veering-on-metallic finish.
- Sana Maiko-Han Eyeliner in Black
This item is as elegant and refined as the Japanese geishas from whom the brand draws its inspiration. Although the packaging looks ornate, the tube itself is simply black, with a sakura printed at the edge.
- Silkygirl Funky Eyelights Pencil in 06 Metallic Bronze
As mentioned before, I love these pencils for their quality and performance.
A staple that every makeup lover should own!
- Daiso Fake Lashes
These are good-quality synthetic falsies from that much-loved S$2 Shop.
- Canmake Cheek and Highlight 05 Mandarin Gold
Although it is still available locally in a handful of stores, this limited edition duo is rather hard to find. I love the rich mandarin shade on its own and when it is discretely paired with the other half of the duo (blush + highlight) or mixed together – it blends well with its finely milled golden counterpart for a glimmer of apricot blush beauty.
- Gransenbon Blush in 07 Blossom Pink
An immediate hit with blush lovers, this clean pink with a hint of warmth has been discontinued in Japan for a long time. Shot through with beautiful shimmer, this is an extremely popular colour from the Gran Brush line. Apparently, the Singapore distributor bought all the remaining stock of this dolly pink blush! ;)
- Jjang Romance Classic Blush in #B2 Rose Embrace
I didn’t think much of this Korean brand till I swatched some of its products. This blush with rose imprints is beautifully soft.
- Kesalan Patharan Face Color in S003
So difficult to find both brand and product now – the former has left our shores (boo!), while the latter is a limited edition blush. I like the hint of red in pink.
- VOV Colour Song Cheek Wave in #1
The combination of colours is reminiscent of MAC Lightscapade, albeit in a more demarcated form. I have it myself and like how the undulating waves of lavender, pink, blue and white blend together for a pretty kiss of highlighting colour.
- The Face Shop Color Nuance For Cheek WH001
A highlighter I often use, this reminds me a lot of NARS Albatross.
- Bison Baby Pink Lipgloss in BP003 Pearl
A cult item in the early 2000s, this remains a popular item today. The multicoloured shimmer in this lipgloss makes it look more expensive than it actually is.
- Kanebo T’estimo Grande Shine Rouge in RS-238
Smooth and pigmented, Japanese lipsticks are always amazing.
- Shiseido Majolica Majorca Rouge Majex Lipgloss in BE706
I liked this your-lips-but-better shade so much that I purchased one for myself when I bought it for my pal…thus succumbing to the ‘one for her, one for me’ reasoning! :D
- Mentholatum Lip Ice Balm and Gloss in Strawberry
This brand constantly produces cute and refreshing lip balms/glosses. I hope I find something lovely from it in the Watsons mystery bag! ;)
- Pupa Lip Perfection Ultra Reflex Extreme Brilliance in 10
A delightful 2008 find, this range of lipglosses impressed me with its grapefruit scent, intense shimmer and beautiful reflective appearance. A few colours also have multicoloured shimmer in them.
- Red Earth Lipstick in PK356
- Aegissi Lavender Essential Mask
- Aroma Eye Mask in Lavender
- Clean & Clear Grapefruit Oil Blotting Film
- Mingkou Rose Essence Oil Bath Salt
- SKII Eye Mask
- Skinfood Bordeaux Mask Sheet
All skin-loving goodies!
- Amrita Spas Emery Board
- Clatty Nail Color in *275
An interesting taupe with a hint of milk chocolate tones, this nail polish is very shimmery. If I recall correctly, the shimmer is silver-based.
- Muji Silver Nail Clippers
One of the best that I’ve used. I also like its simple brushed-silver appearance.
- Nail Buffer
- Sasa Nail Enamel in BE002
A surprise find, this sheer beige nail contains multicoloured micro-shimmer.
Say goodbye to the usual fumbling that comes with nail polish removal with this affordable and functional nail accessory.
- The Face Shop Color in GR502
A unique antique gold with a green cast, I couldn’t resist purchasing this shade.
- Toe Separators
Indispensable in my makeup stash!
- KAI Mascara Comb
Small but useful. KAI is actually known for its blades and kitchenware.
- Watsons Hair Magic Sheet for Foretop
As good as the Dariya ones! ;)
For pigments or pills, this set of boxes makes me smile with its cheerful colours.
Edible goodies that are hard to find in the States, where my pal resides.
- Sanrio Cinnamoroll Toy Refrigerator
I love this adorable toy fridge that I bought for her daughter. It is something I would have wanted as a little girl. :)