Monthly Archives: July 2018

Another top 5 repurchases

2017 and 2018 have been kind to me on the professional and personal front, after the annulis horribilis that is 2016. In skincare too, I have been particularly lucky that I found a number of products that I can foresee myself repurchasing again and again. So 3 years after my initial post (2015), I think its time to do another 5 repurchase.

Hanyul Baek Hwa Goh Cream

Hanyul Baek Hwa Goh Intensive Care Cream (Review)

This is no doubt the best find of 2017 for me. The cream is rich, emollient and very comforting for nightly use, especially for dehydrated skin. This cream is exactly what I have been looking for in a night time moisturizer, and I am not switching anytime soon.

Naruko Tea Tree Purifying Essential Oil

The earlier part of this year has been marred by outbreaks of pimples. In my teenage years I have used products containing benzoyl peroxide, but I have not touched that particular ingredient in close to 10 years, as I only suffer from mild cases of acne. The Naruko tea tree line contains 15% tea tree oil (higher than the recommended minimum of 2.5% to 10%) which has anti-bacterial properties and 2% salicylic acid to assist with the chemical exfoliation. It works well enough that I am not straying yet.

On the other hand, I am terrible at dishing our acne-fighting advice as I get them once in a blue moon.

Melano CC Intensive Spot Serum (Review)

The best ascorbic acid serum by far. Mind you, I have used some expensive whitening stuff like Guerlain (here) and Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solutions (not reviewed) and products made famous by internet i.e. OST C20 Serum (featured here), but nothing works as well as this does. No painful burning or tingling upon first application, small nozzle, little exposure to oxidation. What more could I ask for?

Biore UV Kids Nobi Nobi Suncream

It is weird that a children’s sunscreen is my favourite to use on a daily basis? My skin has been moving towards the dry end of the spectrum steadily and my old favourite Nivea Sun Protect Water Gel is not enough for me anymore. I like the creamy finish and the slight stickiness of the Nobi Nobi Suncream. Plus, it is yellow! How happy can that be?

Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin™ Skin-Friendly Nanoskin Sheet Mask (Review)

For a skincare junkie, I am not exactly a major fan of sheet masks. It is time-consuming and I find much of it very standard and gimmicky. This ceramide based mask reviewed here, however, is a godsend for dry to normal skin types. They have recent reformulated the mask so now it comes in 25ml instead of 30ml, and the serum is a lot less oily and more gel like. I still like the formulation but I wish they’d give me more serum.

Advertisements

Sulwhasoo First Activating Serum

If I ever develop brand loyalty, it will be for the lovely Hanyul, which from what I see is a more affordable hanbang alternative to Sulwhasoo aimed at the Korean domestic market only. As a sucker for the rare and unavailable stuff, I have been way more into Hanyul than the much more internationally available Sulwhasoo. An exception has been made for the Sulwhasoo Overnight Revitalizing Mask (featured here) which I love dearly, as Hanyul does not have a sleeping pack that I enjoy (not since the Rich Effect Overnight Mask anyway).

The Sulwhasoo First Care Activating Serum is a beloved product from the Sulwhasoo brand that is in the HG list of so many on the internet. While I was still using the Hanyul Optimizing Serum (read review), I’ve read that it is a dupe for the way more expensive FCAS, in that it is a fermented serum to be used right after cleansing, and purports to aid in the absorption of the subsequent skincare items in the routine. When I had excess expiring miles, I jumped at the chance and redeemed two bottles.

It comes with a plethora of plant extracts. For hanbang formulations I generally go by the experience more than anything in the ingredients list, as hanbang ingredients are not as well researched as the star ingredients like Vitamins A/B/C/E and the exfoliants like AHAs/BHAs.

Ophiopogon Japonicus Root Extract, Glycyrrhiza Uralensis (Licorice) Root Extract, Water, Butylene Glycol, Alcohol, Glycerin, Betaine, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Paeonia Albiflora Root Extract, Nelumbo Nucifera Seed Extract, Polygonatum Officinale Rhizome/Root Extract, Lilium Tigrinum Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Rehmannia Glutinosa Root Extract, Chrysanthemum Morifolium Flower Extract, Paeonia Suffruticosa Root Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Adenophora Stricta Root Extract, Lycium Chinense Root Extract, Coix Lacryma-Jobi Ma-Yuen Seed Extract, Angelica Tenuissima Root Extract, Honey, Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Natto Gum, Beta-Glucan, Sodium Hyaluronate, Juglans Regia (Walnut) Shell Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Zizyphus Jujuba Fruit Extract, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Extract, Peg/Ppg-17/6 Copolymer, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Bis-Peg-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Potassium Carbomer, Peg-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Dextrin, Cellulose Gum, Ethylhexylglycerin, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan), Phenyl Trimethicone, Propanediol, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Propylene Glycol, Disodium Edta, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance

The serum comes in the form of a brownish gel-like liquid with a herbal fragrance, very similar to the Hanyul. It is light and layers nicely underneath all moisturisers and sunscreens that I have tried.

I’ve given it a few months of use and I can safely say that it did not do anything for my skin. I’ve tried halting its use for weeks and I have observed no difference to my skin.

To be fair, though, my regular routine is working great and I have no complaints at all. Credits go to the actives Melano CC (read review), Estée Lauder ANR (featured here) and a good emollient moisturiser Hanyul Baek Hwa Goh Cream (read review). Moreover,  is not a fair comparison to the Hanyul Optimizing Serum (read review) as my skin is in a pretty much optimal state right now.

So peeps, if you haven’t found your HG serum, go ahead and give the sample or trial sizes of the FCAS a try. Otherwise, I will be giving this expensive serum a miss.