not only do i have these items in my makeup bag, i`ve had these items in my makeup bag for a looong time.  years.  i`m a creature of habit, if something runs out i replace it.  i wasted a lot of money in my twenties trying to find products that worked, but was mostly disappointed.  these are all relatively cheap, and they work well.  

i use a different brand of tsubaki oil - i use sakurajima, but it doesn`t really make a difference.  i use it on my face, nails, hands, lips and hair.  after living through the last 2 winters in canada with a wood stove, i also use olive oil in the winter on my face and hands, and coconut oil in the summer.  i still haven`t found a shampoo i really like, but the tsubaki oil helps pick up the slack.

 i swear by the shiseido for my complexion; i actually use the elixir whitening lotion & emulsifier.  i swear by it because when i started using it a few years back, after a few months all of the people i saw started commenting that my skin was looking better. i had had alot of scars from a bout of adult acne and some nasty sun damage from my first summer in japan.  it was nice to hear some positive comments because up to that point what i mostly heard was `woah, what`s going on with your face.`

i don`t wear alot of makeup, but makeup was mandatory at the first company i worked for in japan as part of the dress code, and generally speaking there is a lot of pressure in terms of societal norms to try and keep a bit of a face painted on.  i do get away with running around as is as much as i can, but it`s tougher when meeting up with people i know.  i`m so used to hearing women apologize to me if they are not wearing makeup and hiding their face behind their hands, that it`s gotten into my psyche. lol, it`s terrible i know - it`s as if you`re insulting people by showing them your real face..  (groan - was the only point of all those feminist theory courses to make me feel guilty for caving in to high pressure exogenous norms?) i don`t use foundation or anything that will clog my pores, but i do use eyeliner and mascara, and a bit of blush or lipstick if i feel i need a bit more. wearing only the bare minimum is my lone rebel yell.

anyway, as for branching out and trying something new; since i like tokyo milk`s solid fragrance i saw a new scent by them in a roll-on in rosebud (a japanese select shop) the other day called WISDOM and tried it out.  it grew on me so i think i`ll treat myself to it for christmas.  this is my makeup bag, it`s made out of surf-suit fabric and keeps everything neat tidy and easy to reach.  i like it so much i stocked it in my shop in two patterns here.