Monday, June 13, 2016

10 things I learned at the VMV Hypoallergenics Megamall Boutique launch

Growing up I remember my Mom using VMV Hypoallergenics, particularly their Superskin moisturizer. As I envied my Mom's perfectly clear caramel skin (I was more blemish-prone and oily), I then understood that good skin would supersede the most expensive makeup any day. 

VMV was pretty much a part of my family's life. I used the 100% pure Glycerin Soap, I blotted shine in high school with their oil-absorbing compact powder, I beached with their famous Armada 70 sunscreen. I wouldn't say I was just a consumer -- I was a fan! And up to this day, my family still chooses VMV for our skin care and sun protection needs. 

So when they invited me to the opening of their SM Megamall boutique, I was ecstatic! For the first time I'd be able to meet and mingle with the team I've admired all these years. So here's what went down at the media event, plus ten things I learned at the bubbly launch: 

1. Presenting VMV's first boutique in an SM mall

After years of waiting, VMV has now unveiled their first ever boutique in SM. Previously only Robinsons and Ayala Malls housed VMV boutiques and counters, but now we can [hopefully] expect more branches in the near future in more SM malls across the country.

2. The launch was their first media event

For many years VMV shied away from blogger events and the like, but they made an exception on this grand celebration. It was the first time I met everyone (we'd mostly just correspond via email or Instagram) that I felt equal parts anxious and giddy.

VMV also has wonderful skin-friendly makeup
The Essenses line is great for skin sensitivities
3. It's sunscreen NOT sunblock

The term "sunblock" is a misnomer because there is no product that can completely block off the sun's rays. Therefore the correct term now is sunscreen which (depending on the active ingredients) can prevent UVA and UVB rays from penetrating our skin. 

When asked what they'd tote if they found themselves stuck on a deserted island, the VMV team answered Armada Sport 70! Everyone answered without batting an eyelash, proving that sun protection is tops on their list. Now if only you could eat sunscreen...

4. Laura V. Bertotto is the coolest person ever

THE daughter of VMV's founding Dermatologist, Laura is now CEO and at the helm of this global skin care company. Now unbeknownst to some, Laura and I go way back (haha). I remember emailing the VMV customer service back in early 2000 with an analog Nokia phone (data on cellular was so new back then) where Laura would patiently and swiftly answer all my questions.

Since then I've somehow "stalked" her by reading all the InSkin magazines, been closely monitoring her on IG and Twitter (she has super funny skin-spirational posts), and read whatever article that has her name on it. And being perpetually this stern but cool boss, I had to share a bubbly or two with her at the launch.

Laura's skin care tip: If you have a pimple, ice it for a few minutes then apply Red Better Spot Corrector. The ice will alleviate inflammation and calm down your pimple. Ice is the most underrated pimple healer. 

And you know, I tried this last week when I felt a swollen bump and the ice did keep it from transforming into an angry pimple. Just in time for my nephew's 1st birthday party.  So yeah there's truth to her statement, ice will save the day.

5. Atopic Dermatitis sufferers can find comfort in VMV Hypoallergenics

Anna Anastacio, VMV Chief Business Development Officer, shared her struggle with atopic dematitis growing up. Unable to use any other product for fear of experiencing a flare-up, she turned to VMV and never looked back. She is the perfect spokesperson because she experienced the "healing powers" of using hypoallergenic products.

Anna's skin care tip: Grandma Minnie's Boo-Boo Balm is a must-have! This all-around ouch-less anti-bacterial balm is great for cuts, scrapes, and insect bites! Runners use it to prevent chafing, you can even apply it to lips and cuticles to keep them moisturized. 

And I agree! The Boo-Boo Balm is one of my top VMV products, I take it with me when I travel, I have one on my bedside table, and 3 boxes waiting in the wing.

6. Mix and match VMV makeup to complement your [current] skin tone

When I met Trina Aquino (VMV's R&D Manager) I had no idea we'd hit it off instantly. A fellow skinthusiast and surfer-slash-beach bum, Trina knew all too well how our love for the sun and tanned skin would affect our complexion. 

Trina shares: If you find Armada Sport 70 too silicone-y, you can comfortably use Armada 60 on the face as it is also a little water-resistant. Re-application is key for continuous protection. Now when you're back in the city and you find Armada 60 a little too white for the face, top it with Skintangible BBBB Cream for a more natural and "glowy" finish. 

7. Everyone is skin care and fitness crazy at VMV

And for good reason! You have to be a little crazy and passionate to have lasted this long in the industry, especially working for a company that is at the forefront of hypoallergenic skin care -- the only validated one worldwide, actually.

In the photo I'm with the savvy Jacklyn Remo (Assistant Manager for Marketing) and the bubbly Marie E. Cortez (Managing Director for Marketing). I had a blast swapping skin care stories and reminiscing past VMV products. 

Jackie's skin care tip: When asked about her top 3 products, she answered: Armada, Boo-Boo Balm, and Know It Oil. Also subscribe to VMV InSkin to get the latest on skin care delivered to your inbox.

Marie's skin care tip: Know It Oil is the bomb! I use it for everything -- for my body, for natural recipes. Apply the VCO to your gams for a lovely sheen, best when wearing skirts or cut-off jeans. I also have one bottle allocated for my avocado and toast breakfast sprinkled with rosemary-flavored rock salt.

Check out my VCO epiphany and some tips on how I use VMV's Know It Oil here

8. Highly trained VMV Skin Consultants stand the test of time

Geralyn (right) has been my VMV lady for the past 10+ years. She has seen me through pimples and sunburn, she's always very accommodating to me and my family plus gives us updates on sales and new arrivals. It's important to stick to just one consultant so she can closely monitor your progress and recommend an upgrade in your skin care routine if necessary. Visit Geralyn at the VMV Trinoma branch.

9. VMV has their own VH rating system

What does "hypoallergenic" mean anyway? You'll notice that VMV uses this word a lot in their packaging and advertising. When you encounter a hypoallergenic product, this means it does not contain any known allergens which could translate to fewer allergic reactions. The term "hypoallergenic" has been used loosely and thrown around in the cosmetic industry that it can be quite a challenge to actually find one that is backed up by studies and tests. This is especially true for someone who has sensitive and reactive skin (me).

This is why VMV created their own VH rating system, a simple numerical guide that shows us how many allergens were omitted in the product. The higher the VH rating, the safer it is. In the photo above, the Skintangible shows the VH-76 rating which means it does not contain the 76 known allergens.

10. Missing an old VMV product? Request for it!

If you're missing a discontinued product, email the team and they might just reincarnate it. I have a few that I'd like them to bring back, namely the It Girl and Glazed Plum lipsticks which I've adored for so many years. 

To explore and shop the entire VMV Hypoallergenics range, visit


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