More tales of fripperies and frivolity involving Korean cosmetics and skincare:
When I first started, I thought oh, I’ll just try one thing here and one thing there, no big deal. Well it turns out my middle name is “Moderation? What’s that all about?” and things didn’t quite work out that way.
I will keep this quick though, because at this point even I am tired of hearing myself go on about this.
Pictured up top are two products from glowrecipe, a website that offers “natural and harsh free” items. I was originally looking for cruelty-free items, and they are out there, but it’s all very confusing. The one website I found that had a list of cruelty-free companies on it now looks like the domain is up for sale, so I am not sure how legit it may have been in the first place. The search continues.
I didn’t feel a compelling need for anything on glowrecipe (what could I possibly need at this point?), but I was seduced by the gorgeous packaging, so I picked up a bottle of the Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner and the Blossom Jeju Camellia Seed Dry Oil. The toner is for all skin types and boasts Aloe Vera extract, Chrysanthemum extract and Oat Kernel extract, as well as fermented Dandelion and Argan Oil. It has sort of a floral-anise scent and a …bouncier texture than most toners I’ve used. I don’t know how else to explain it…maybe a tiny bit more viscous, I suppose. The Camellia seed oil is lightweight and fairly odorless, and to be quite honest, I have only used it once or twice. I keep forgetting about it. It’s one of the site’s best-sellers, though, and apparently is great for hydration and nourishment.
The Etude House Dear Darling lip tint, “vampire red” was purchased for the name alone, as you probably could have guessed. I like the gradient lip trend (I think it sort of looks like you’ve been enjoying a blood popcicle) but it turns out I am too lazy to put in the work to figure out how to do it. Also, this is a fairly sticky product, which I hate.
The Etude House Lash Perm 3 Step Volumecara is a mascara with an adjustable dial to dispense more or less product. I believe you are supposed to start with step 1, dial up to step two, etcetera, but I just skip straight to step 3 because who has time for that? It’s actually a pretty great formula and one of the best mascaras I have ever used. My lashes are pretty skimpy and this makes them really stand out.
The Innifree No Sebum Mineral Pact makes me laugh every time I have to say it. Probably because in my head I am substituting the word “semen” for “sebum” because I am a filthy pervert and eternally 12 years old. It contains Jeju natural mineral and mint and is a 6-free product: paraben, talc, artificial colours, animal ingredients, mineral oil and artificial fragrance free. The packaging is adorable and resembles a macaron, but the sponge is kind of low quality. I am not even sure why I purchased this; for the past few years my skin has really dried out, I’m not nearly the greasy teenager I used to be. I don’t really have that much oil on my face that needs absorbing anymore. The funny thing is…when I use this product over BB cream or whatever, I actually find that I am oilier at the end of the day! Very strange.
The Holika Holika Jewel Light Pencil eyeliner in Black Plum is a really gorgeous earthy plum shade that probably makes for a great smoky eye. It’s a nice quality eye pencil, not too creamy but not too scratchy. I read reviewers mention that you can sharpen it, even though there is plastic around it, so that is definitely a plus.
Of the last three products I will mention, only two of them, I believe, are actually Korean. I think I threw them in my shopping cart because I had seen beauty bloggers mentioning them as part of their routine, and I didn’t realize at the time that the Bioderma was a French product and Natural Aqua Gel Cure is Japanese.
The Bioderma is basically an eye maker remover, and as it turns out is sort of a cult favorite. After using it a few times, I can see why. No left over panda eyes, no oily residue, no red, inflamed skin. I really love this stuff. Very gentle, very mild, and I believe they make it for both dry and sensitive skin. I am not sure which one I purchased, but whichever one it is, I am okay with it. Highly recommended.
The Missha Time Revolution Night Repair Science Activator Serum…was not actually the product I thought I was ordering. I thought I ordered an ampoule. The Time Revolution Night Repair line uses Retinol technology for “intensive 3D night care” for strengthening and moisturizing skin, while also providing it with the necessary nutrients. Also has wrinkle repairing and whitening benefits.” I don’t know about all that, as I have only been using it for a week now, and I suspect some of these products produce the sorts of results you don’t really notice until you are 50 and folks are telling you that you don’t look at day over 30. Here’s hoping. It’s a little sticky and leaves your skin feeling a bit tacky – definitely something to use at bedtime.
And finally…the Natural Aqua Gel Cure. This one is another cult favorite, with apparently a bottle sold in Japan every 12 seconds. I’m not sure if it’s due to the efficacy of the product or the gross-out factor – which for some people (me) – is a huge selling point. Remember those Biore pore strips that you paste over your nose for a few minutes, tear off, and when you look at them closely you can see a dense forest of your former blackheads waving in the breeze? I always got a kick out of that. To me, the the Natural Aqua Gel Cure is sort of the same principle. It’s a scrub-free, water-based exfoliate – a gel that you gently massage onto your clean, dry face (wash it with your cleanser of choice, first), and as you massage, you should see little white balls like spots appearing. These little balls are the dead skin cells that are being lifted from your face. Once you have completed massaging your face, then rinse off the gel with just warm and not hot water. UGH IT IS SO GROSS I LOVE IT. And seriously, my face felt pretty fantastic afterward. This is an exfoliating product though, so once or twice a week is enough – any more than that will qprobably do more harm than good.