When The Body Shop founder Dame Anita Roddick first visited Ghana in 1992, she met the women who have treasured shea butter for generations. She personally witnessed how they’ve been using shea butter for its highly moisturizing properties to protect and intensely nourish their skin from the dry Saharan desert winds.

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by Robbie Pangilinan

Tattoo artists from all over the country trooped to the Kannawidan Ylocos Festival to showcase their art and talent at the Tinnatoan Tattoo Competition on February 16 at the Vigan City Convention Center.

The tattoo competition is part of the Gov. Ryan Singson Ylocos Tattoo Expo of the Kannawidan, a festival that marks the 2001st anniversary of Ilocos Sur becoming an independent province.

“It is a great time to bring all the best tattoo artists here in our country to this kind of event that showcases our history, culture and traditions, and what we are as Ilocanos,” said Gov. Ryan Luis V. Singson.

Philippine Tattoo Artists Guild (PhilTAG) founder and president Ricky Sta. Ana and PhilTAG officials as well as known tattoo artists of the country witnessed artists compete in three categories: Newbie, Non-Pro and Pro. Three winners from each category got a trophy, certificate and freebies.

“I encourage you to continue making masterpieces using the skin as canvass, to tell stories through images inked on skin, to fill the blank pages with the ink of your hearts. The body is divine, sacred – and we tattoo artists respect and revere that – so we only ink the most beautiful and meaningful images that our clients will be proud of. More importantly, I ask you to uplift this art so that people will become more aware, to uphold the art as both a tradition and innovation, and to always be the best, give your best, create the best art you can,” said Sta. Ana in his inspirational speech.

Ilocos Governor Ryan Singson with Philtag President Ricky Sta Ana.
Ilocos Governor Ryan Singson with Philtag President Ricky Sta Ana.


Founded in 1995, PhilTAG has since been helping its members by providing training, development, and education programs so that the tattoo artists can earn for their families. The organization also gives its members the opportunity to work abroad and continues to encourage aspiring tattoo artists to know about sanitation and dos and donts of being a tattoo artist.

In the Pro Category, Mario Domalaon placed first, followed by Mark Oliver Panag (second place) and Mc Nathaniel Esfejo (third place). Domalaon also bagged all three awards for the Colored Pre-Made Category. For the Tattooed Female Pre-Made Category, Arjoy Ponce, Janer Santos and Butch San Diego got first, second and third place, respectively; while Gilmar Ponciano, Butch San Diego and George Refforma placed first, second and third in the Black & Gray Pre-Made Category. Mark Alison Gabrig topped the Non-Pro Category, with Charlon Capapa and Joseph Querido on second and third place. #

Cancer remains one of the world’s most urgent medical issues, what with its massive impact on society and lives of individuals. The recent celebration of World Cancer Day on Feb. 4 intended to drive future change by raising awareness and action to help save millions from the disease.

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Durable and functional bags are necessary for any kind of trip. They carry the essentials and more, letting globe-trotting individuals enjoy the journey and reach their destination. Take these practical and stylish bags for example, as they boast features perfect for traveling.

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In the fourth week of January this year, the province of Isabela held its major festival, the Bambanti Festival to celebrate the economic, social, political, and cultural victories it has so far achieved. But as it reveled in its victories, the Region II province earned more—a Guinness Book of World Record, no less.  

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