COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence: A Review

We all know what this is.

CLAIMS: Made with all-natural domestic 96% snail secretion filtrate, the Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence is a Real Power Essence that transform the skin while keeping in the moisture and encouraging the real power of skin in a healthy way. It replenishes nutrients to the skin to prevent and repair damages and fills the skin with elasticity for a healthier, younger looking skin.
INGREDIENTS: Snail Secretion Filtrate, Betaine, Butylene Glycol,1,2-Hexanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Panthenol, Arginine, Allantoin, Ethyl Hexanediol, Sodium Polyacrylate, Carbomer, Phenoxyethanol
[ source ]

TL;DR: This is an essential for many people in the skincare community and you can count me as one of them. Speeds up healing, soothes the skin, and provides additional hydration to a routine.Read More »

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Muji Mild Cleansing Oil: A Review

The Muji Cleansing Oil has been in my routine for over a year now. I started off with the Sensitive version, which was thicker in consistency and more expensive. I found this Mild version easier to work with, but with the same effects so I stuck with this.

Claims: Contains olive oil and jojoba oil which helps remove makeup quickly. Infused with apricot juice and peach leaf extract as natural moisturizing components.
SELRES_237317ae-a881-46b3-8235-9907513It’s a bit difficult to find an ingredient list from the internet and the list on the bottle is in Japanese. And from Vanity Rex’s post, it seems that the English ingredients on the stickers cannot be trusted.
Ingredients list from Vanity Rex’s translation efforts:Hydrogenated polyisobutene, PEG-7 glyceryl cocoate, Ethyl oleate, Sorbitan oleate, Olive oil, Jojoba oil, Hybrid sunflower oil, Dipropylene glycol, Orange flower water, Water, Butylene glycol, Tocopherol, Peach leaf extract, Apricot juice, Glycerin, Propylparaben, Butylparaben
Ingredients from Skincarisma:C13-16 Isoparaffin, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Ethyl Oleate, Sorbitan Oleate, Ozonized Olive Oil, Jojoba Oil/Macadamia Seed Oil Esters, Triolein, Dipropylene Glycol, Rose Flower Water, Water, Butylene Glycol, Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Tocopherol, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Juice, Prunus Persica (Peach) Leaf Extract, Glycerin

TL;DR: A light, fragrance-free cleansing oil that removes virtually any trace of every makeup I own and emulsifies like a dream.

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Human Nature Hydrating Line: A Review

Okay, it’s been a long time coming, but I am finally writing up this review about my favorite Human Nature Products: the Hydrating Creamy Wash and Hydrating Face Toner. If you have been following my Instagram even for a little bit, these products are very often featured. These have been in my routine since about this time last year, which was around the time I discovered a cleansing oil that worked for me pretty well, too. And these products have shoved me into the skincare sinkhole I am in now.

Let’s get to it.

Claims: 
Creamy Wash – Transform skin that’s dull and dry to supple and hydrated with nature’s moisture boosters and nutrient-rich moringa – an overflowing well of antioxidant vitamins E, C and A. Step out into the limelight with skin that’s oh-so-soft and moisturized.
Face Toner – High time to skip those harsh toners that hurt and dry the skin. Treat yourself to the moisturizing and refreshing caress of this unique blend of plant collagen and moringa seed extract.
Ingredients:
Creamy Wash – aqua (water), sodium cocoyl isethionate (coconut-derived), stearic acid (vegetable-derived), decyl glucoside (coconut-derived), coco-glucoside (coconut-derived), glyceryl oleate (coconut-derived), glyceryl stearate (vegetable-derived), glycerin, fragrance (all-natural), xanthan gum, levulinic acid (rice/corn-derived), Moringa pterygosperma (malunggay) seed extract, p-anisic acid (anise seed-derived), phytic acid (rice-bran-derived)
Face Toner – aqua (water), glycerin, gluconolactone (corn-derived), sodium benzoate, Moringa pterygosperma (malunggay) seed extract, natto gum, hydrolyzed corn starch, Beta vulgaris (beet) root extract, sodium lactate (sugarcane-derived), sodium gluconate (sugarcane-derived), xanthan gum, fragrance (all-natural)
[ UPDATE: Apparently, HN has updated the toner’s ingredient list with ethyl alcohol because the supplier didn’t think it was significant enough to include in the list. I am very bummed out by this. Thanks kobecow for the heads up. ]
Face Toner UPDATED – aqua, glycerin, moringa (malunggay) seed extract, hydrolyzed corn starch, beet root extract, sodium lactate, sodium gluconate, natto gum, xantham gum, sodium citrate, citric acid, fragrance, gluconolactate, ethyl alcohol, sodium benzoate
[ sources: 1, 2 ]

TL;DR: I love both products, they are HG status for me and I don’t think I have tried any other cleansers from when I started using the Creamy Wash. The toner also beats out the Hada Labo Gokujyun Lotion in my book. These are paraben-free, sulfate-free, and alcohol-free [ UPDATE – The toner is not alcohol-free, see list above ]. The last one is particularly important to me as I like my face products to be without alcohol as much as possible, especially cleansers and toners.

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I might not buy sheet masks anymore.

Sheet masks might be the most popular item in the AB community. A lot of people I follow on Instagram are sheet mask fiends. I have nothing against sheet masks, they’re great! They’re great for when you need a boost in hydration, brightening, or whatever else skin concern you might have. They also feel luxurious after a long day. Popping on a mask that has been in the fridge is the best.

I have been mulling over this decision for a few weeks now but I have come to it: I might not be buying sheet masks anymore. This all boils down to one big beef I have against sheet masks: the waste.

The Philippines (I live here), despite being a relatively small country, is the third worst plastic polluters of oceans and that breaks my heart. I’m not an aggressive recycler, mostly because our country doesn’t have the proper mechanisms in place for recycling, but I try to do my part in reducing my non-biodegradable waste. I switched to menstrual cups from sanitary napkins and tampons. I avoid using straws when I eat out and I’m planning to buy my own washable straw, bringing our own bags when going grocery shopping.

But still, I can’t completely avoid waste, especially in this community. I often daydream about refilling my skincare bottles from big jugs in stores, but that would be a logistical nightmare as well as a big contamination risk at both ends.

Human Nature (a local brand) thankfully has a Balik Bote, Bigay Buhay program, I can bring empty HN bottles (and I have a lot) to their branches, which are then sold to junkshops and proceeds are used to support Gawad Kalinga communities. According to an HN customer rep, “[junkshops] or a partner third party have equipment that will properly recycle the bottles to perhaps raw material that can be remolded into different bottles or other material”.

The Plastic Solution has the ecobrick project where you cut up clean plastic packaging into tiny pieces and stuff them tightly inside plastic bottles. The thing is, I rarely buy drinks which come in plastic bottles.

Innisfree offers incentives for bottles brought back but they have no physical stores in the Philippines yet.

Used sheet masks.

I still might make use of compressed sheet mask tablets though, if I’m really pressed for a treat yo’ self kind of day. Daiso sells a 15-pack one which comes in just one little thing of plastic, tablets are not individually wrapped.

That’s basically it. Unless I am getting sheet masks for free or as gifts, I will not be purchasing them anymore. It might seem silly for some but it makes me sleep a bit better at night. My face will still be okay without them.

PvP: Human Nature Hydrating Toner v Hada Labo Gokujyun Hyaluronic Lotion

Hey I’m starting a new series again! Very heavily inspired by honestandlocal‘s #ABBattle, PvP (product vs product, ayyy) takes two very similar Asian Beauty products and compare them on claims, ingredients, and actual benefits on my face (or other parts of the body).

For the first post of the series, let’s take a look at the locally-produced Human Nature Hydrating Face Toner and the widely-loved Hada Labo Gokujyun Hyaluronic Lotion.

Ever since I started a proper hydrating routine, my face has not been as oily and my skin texture has vastly improved. I had this dry scaling issue due to dehydration, it was not peeling, but it was noticeable especially when I tried to put on face makeup.

TL;DR: Human Nature wins hands down. An affordable, locally-produced toner that hydrates like no other.Read More »

Skin Watchers Ceramizing Essence Toner: A Review

CLAIMS: The Skin Watchers Ceramizing Essence Toner is an enriched toner and essence combination that is effective in helping your skin retain its essential moisture, protecting your skin from harmful environmental factors, nourishing your skin, and boosting the natural radiance of your skin.
It is formulated with Glycerin to help keep your skin moisturized, Hyaluronic Acid, which can absorb more than 800 times its own weight, and Ceramide, which protects the skin from damage, thus preventing moisture depletion. It is also formulated with Vegetable oriented Squalane, which is moisturizing and improves the skin’s elasticity, and Macadmia Seed Oil, which creates a moisture protection layer.
INGREDIENTS: Water, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Glyceryl Acrylate/Acrylic Acid Copolymer, Phytosqualane, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Coptis Chinensis Root Extract, Arctium Lappa Root Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum(Lemon) Fruit Extract, Humulus Lupulus(Hops) Extract, Hypericum Perforatum extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract, Saponaria Officinalis Leaf/Root Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Water, C14-22 Alcohols, C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Polysorbate 60, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Dimethicone, Ceramide 3, Cetearyl Alcohol, Lecithin, Hydrogenated Macadamia Seed Oil, Betaine, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, Xanthan Gum, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Arginine, Carbomer, Allantoin, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Chlorphenesin, Disodium EDTA, Parfum
[ SOURCE ]

TL;DR: I don’t know about this guys, I really wanted to love this but I can’t see a difference when it’s in my routine or not. And I’d rather not have the strong scent.

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EYENLIP Pure Cotton Perfect Cover BB Cream: A Review

CLAIMS: Contains moisturizing ingredients to cultivate moist and soften skin. It gives vitality to sensitive skin. It is fresh and non-sticky making it able to withstand water. Covers even narrow areas of dulled dark circles, freckles and blemishes. Base makeup trend item that displays clean and even skin tones.
INGREDIENTS: Water, Cyclomethicone, Titanium Dioxide, Butylene Glycol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Propylene Glycol, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone, 4-Methylbenzylidene Camphor, Zinc Oxide, Mineral Oil, Sorbitan Olivate, Microcrystalline Wax, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Dimethicone, CI 77499 (Black Oxide of Iron), Allantoin, Betaine, Sodium chloride, Glyceryl Caprylate, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Morus Alba Bark Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance
[ SOURCE ]

I rarely use face makeup on normal days because I’m too lazy. And I haven’t tried a lot of BB creams because I swore to myself to focus on skincare first before trying to find a good BB cream or foundation. I don’t want to pile on cover-up if I still have a bunch of acne.

BB creams from Korea are always a mixed bag for me. I have recently tried the Missha M Perfect Cover BB Cream in #21, too, and I found that Korean BB creams are too pink for me. I am yellow toned for the majority of my skin, except my very pink face. So I always end up with this pasty white face perched on a yellow neck.

The sweet people from Beauty in Seoul Philippines [ Instagram | Facebook ] sent me a small thank you package for my reviews, and this BB cream was one of the items inside. I have only heard of this brand from Beauty in Seoul itself, and I haven’t tried anything from it. It’s also pretty hard to find resources and reviews about this product so let’s get this ball rolling.

TL;DR: Wrong shade/tone for me but I love the product.Read More »