Category Archives: Hauls

UPDATE: Japan 2017 Haul

I am back home from Japan! (*≧▽≦)ノシ)) It is the first ever solo trip for me and surprisingly I am quite well adjusted to being alone with my thoughts. The only time where I hated being alone was at Aoikigahara, where I was hiking in deafening silence for 2 hours. (O∆O)

First up, some shocks:

  • I didn’t manage to get any Chifure products ‧º·(˚ ˃̣̣̥⌓˂̣̣̥ )‧º·˚ I had far less time than I thought for shopping, and Chifure isn’t popular enough to be found in every drugstore
  • Outside of the cities, drugstores aren’t so commonplace after all. At least, it is not easy to get to it with walking and public transport
  • Best part of the trip was getting in touch with my nose again, and trying out the the slightly more niche perfumes at Isetan Shinjuku as well as Ginza
  • Fell in love with the Comme des Garçons Incense series (Kyoto, in particular, is a masterpiece to my nose)
  • I stuck closely to my shopping list; I am proud of myself!!  Have a look below:

Old Faves

My original shopping list!

I bought all of them except the Chifures.

Japanese Toners

  • Hada Labo Super Hyaluronic Acid Lotion – Found it in a limited edition bottle so I couldn’t resist getting one.
  • Hada Labo Premium Lotion – The supposed more hydrating and plumping version of the original SHA Lotion, I got it on the very last day when it is clear that I don’t have time to look around for my favourite version of hyaluronic acid – Chifure Essence (Review).
  • Kanebo Dew Lotion – The Dew Lotion was recommended by a Japanese colleague who has beautiful skin.
  • Kikumasamune Moist Lotion

Cleansers & Sunscreens

No surprises in this department at all, I have tried and loved all of them:

  • Refill for Kose Softymo Light Cleansing Oil
  • Refill for Perfect Watery Oil
  • Biore UV Nobi Nobi SPF50/PA+++
  • Biore Perfect Milk SPF50/PA+++

Serge Lutens

I was very intent on getting Sa Majesté la Rose or Chergui when I walked into the Shinjuku store, but I ended up falling in love with La fille de Berlin (“The Girl from Berlin”) upon the very first sniff. Amber, rose, musk and woods reminded me of Amouage Lyric, which is one of my ultimate favorite perfume, ever (I wrote about how much I loved it three years ago here). While Lyric is a lady, LFdB is half a wild beast and half a Shakespearean tragedy.

(On the other hand, the first hour of Féminité du Bois is a massive turnoff. It is in the same scrubber league as the first 30 minutes of A La Nuit. Both are mostly universally loved but I cannot stand them O.o)

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Japan 2017: Shopping List

I’m due to head to the land of sushi and amazing drugstores in a few hours! This is my fourth time in the country but I am still so excited 😀

I am intending to stay really focused on what I am buying this time, so no more of the massive haul like the last time in 2015. We’ll see if I stick to the plan in a few weeks.

Without further ado, this is what I am intending to haul this time:

Old Faves

  1. Melano CC Medicated Intensive Spot Correcting Serum (Review)
  2. Refills for Chifure Essence (Review), Essence W, Essence VC (Reviews)
  3. Shiseido Fino Hair Mask (Review)
  4. Makeup products:
    • Yuagari Suppin Powder
    • Canmake Cream Cheek in Various Shades
    • Heroine Make Super Liner
    • Kate Lasting Eyebrows W BR-3 and Kanebo Media Brow DB, because I can’t leave the house without my brows done

New Tries

  1. Japanese lotions / toners: One of my favorite things to buy in Japan are their lotions, a slightly thicker toner that truly helps with my dehydration lines or lotions that perform specific function. Going for:
    • Labo Labo Super Keana Lotion
    • Chifure Skin Lotion – I’ve enjoyed almost everything that Chifure had to offer so far, so I’m happy to dig a little deeper and try other things that the brand has to offer
    • Chifure Deep Moisture Lotion
    • Hada Labo Gokujyun Oil-in-Lotion – The new variety of the Hada Labo lotions which contains squalene oil

Sunscreens and cleansing oils – These are truly products that I use every single day, even if at home. I live in a tropical climate where the sun is brutal for most of the year. If I’m gonna have my window shades open for the day, I will need sunscreens. Cleansing oils go hand in hand with sunscreens as they are the best way to remove the overall gunk from my face. Going for:

  • Kose Softymo Light Cleansing Oil, a light, scentless version that does the job well.
  • Perfect Watery Oil also another one that I have bought re-fills for, it is scented but for a change I do like the scent.

A Serge Lutens perfume – Ever since Serge Lutens has been completed by Shiseido, I guess it is much easier to access these perfumes in Asia. I have visited the Shiseido Serge Lutens store previously and found a good selection of their perfumes, but it was short of Féminité du Bois, so I bought nothing.

  • Going for: Chergui, Majestic Rose or Fleurs d’Oranger, but Féminité du Bois is so elusive that I’ve yet to scent it, and I want to try it so bad before settling on one

 

Aug/Sep 2017 Empties and Repurchases

Ladies and gents (any out there)! I took a 2 week holiday in the Alps and now that I’m back, I’m paying for it by overtime everyday (๑′°︿°๑). Things have been crazy overwhelming this year with so much additional responsibilities and work load.

So this isn’t actually an update at all, more like a round up of what’s going on in terms of skincare for myself!


Hanyul Baek Hwa Goh Intensive Care Cream (Review)

EMPTIED AND REPURCHASED! I cannot do without this buttery goodness. No matter how much I flirt around with the other ladies, imma still head home for my wifey BHG Cream.

Beauty of Joseon Dynasty Cream (Review)

EMPTIED. After my initial review, I’m still not impressed. Sometimes we (consumers) think that if something is not working for us, it is somehow our fault, like:

  • We didn’t use it consistently
  • We applied too much / too little
  • We only used one jar and didn’t give the product enough time to prove itself

Please, if its good it should prove itself with the first use. For me BoJ cream embodies the case of a decent ingredients list but mediocre performance. Bye! 🙂

SKIN&LAB Dr. Color Effect Red Serum

EMPTIED. I bought it as certain sites / youtubers claimed that it is a dupe for Estée Lauder ANR (review), which is my longest cosmetic love. Seriously, so much of my money went to Estée Lauder over the years I can probably buy a hundred Melano CC Serums.

I don’t know what I feel about this serum… it definitely isn’t a dupe for the ANR. It doesn’t contain any skincare triggers, but aside from hydration, it did little for my skin. It has a healthy mix of plant extracts which makes the serum smell great, but hasn’t proven themselves otherwise.

I will not be repurchasing this, I’ll save the money in the piggy bank for the real thing… Which is exactly what i did next (๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)و

Estee Lauder ANR (Review)

EMPTIED AND REPURCHASED. I couldn’t resist as I was passing through Duty Free on my way home so I had to do it. This is my fifth 100ml bottle.

SK-II Haul!

This is the sister post to the Korean beauty haul posted earlier. I have split the gigantic haul into 2 posts because they are so different. For the Korean beauty haul, sometimes it is difficult to find any information, product introduction, brand philosophy as well as ingredients list. This is especially for the Hanyul brand which somehow doesn’t have enough presence in the Western markets and blogsphere.

For the SK-II brand, there are literally mega-tonnes of information, blogs, forums, e-zines to filter through. It is obvious that many bloggers were offered free samples or full-sized products, not having spent a single cent of their money. Sometimes the resulting “review” is just a repeat of the official marketing materials. “… After x years of research”, “amazing ingredients xxx and xxx is shown to do xxx”. I have no qualms about brands gifting products for review (give me some please (๑•̀ㅂ•́)و), and I do like SK-II, especially the defunct Stempower Cream, but it gets tiring trying to find a genuine review.

So for the haul below, some are bought with blind faith that they will work with zero research done on my part.

sk-ii-haul

Obviously, I’m terrible at flatlays hurhur

SK-II Facial Treatment Clear Lotion 160ml

This is an AHA/BHA toner with added pitera, which I will be comparing with the Mizon AHA&BHA Daily Clean Toner. Based on the ingredients list alone, FTCL looks like a winner, as it doesn’t contain alcohol. But then again, my skin is mostly hardy and I can tolerate alcohol in my skincare.

SK-II Genoptics Aura Essence & SK-II Genoptics Spot Essence

I bought SK-II’s skin brightening line after the results of the Magic Ring test showed that I ain’t doing well in that department. I since then, I have stocked up on a number of skin brightening serums. This Genoptics pair is the most expensive of the lot and I will be very disappointed if they don’t work.

I’m currently still on the Melano CC and I am scheduled to use these in mid-April if everything goes well.

SK-II RNA Power Cream & Eye Cream

Another attempt at my HG hunt. I have lofty expectations of the RNA line because the Stempower line has treated me wonderfully. I have started using the eye cream, but will not be starting on the face cream until I’m done with the Kose Moisture Skin Repair Cream.

That’s all, bye! You won’t be seeing another haul for the next half year because my wallet is seriously dented. (シ;゚Д゚)シ

K Beauty Haul!

k-beauty-haul-s

 

2016 has been a dry year in terms of skincare. I worked hard and spent most of the year using up my formidable stash which is mostly stored in my fridge. Now that my fridge is mostly cleared, 2017 is where I go crazy with the new-shiny-things.

Its only been 3 months and I already have 2 hauls heading my way. One is dirt cheap / affordable Korean skincare haul, and another wallet denting high end skincare haul (See it here SK-II Haul!). Here’s my first impressions.

mizon-and-cosrx-m

Mizon is a potential HG while the COSRX is…

Mizon AHA&BHA Daily Clean Toner 150ml

A bit of history about me and acids first: I have normal to dry skin, and I have been a regular AHA user for more than five years. I have never felt the need for BHAs as acne and clogs has never been my concern. My previous foray into BHAs with the DHC Salicylic Acid Toner was a terrible experience, which had me gifting my two bottles away immediately. After listening to a Snailcast episode about acids recently, my heart started itching again and I bought the Mizon on Qoo10. Its been 2 weeks of nightly use and I can say it is a good fit for me. Look at the dent that I’ve already made! LOOK!

(CosDNA)

COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence 100ml

This is firmly in the same hydrating essence category as my favorite Chifure Essence and Unitec Advanced Hydrating Essence. I have given it a few days of tries, and so far it has performed well, but it is nothing to write about. Though seriously, can you ever do something different with hydrating essences?

(CosDNA)

COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask 50g

I bought this after the Japanology episode about how extracts from rice can help the skin’s ability to retain moisture. I already have a cream with rice extracts which I like, so its a sleep mask that I’m trying next.

(CosDNA)

Hanyul Baek Hwa Goh Silky Skin Cream

I haven’t been able to find a cream that I love following the discontinuation of the Hanyul Rich Effect line. The closest that I have gotten was SK II Stempower Cream, but even that has been discontinued. So I find myself getting both the SK II RNA Power Cream and falling back into the Hanyul trap. Baek Hwa Goh literally translates to the “White Flower Mushroom” i.e. Shiitake mushroom, and is also said to include hydrolyzed ginseng saponins, ginseng root extract and angelica root extract.

(CosDNA)

Hanyul Optimizing Mask

I have loved the Hanyul Optimizing Serum (review) and Hanyul Rich Effect Overnight Mask (review), so I’m guessing I should be at least okay with a marriage between the two.

(CosDNA)

Where I bought them: COSRX, Mizon on Qoo10 Global, Hanyul on Qoo10 Global

The Materialistic Life: Japan 2015 Haul

(ヾノ•᷅ ༬•᷄ ) The following, ladies and gentlemen, is the reason why I will be on a spending ban for the good half of 2016.

Japan Haul (m)

 Skincare

  • Shiseido Revital Moisturizer EX 100ml
  • Kose Medicated Sekkisei Whitening Lotion 200ml
  • HABA G-Lotion 180ml
  • HABA White Lady 30ml
  • HABA Squalane 30ml
  • Chifure Essence 45ml (x4)
  • Shiseido Elixir Superior Facial Effect Massage Cream 93g
  • Shiseido Elixir Massage Estherist Cream 100g
  • Mose Moisture Skin Repair Cream 40g

Japan Oils (m)

Japan Cleansers (m)

Cleansers

  • Softymo Speedy Cleansing Oil 230ml (+ 200ml refill)
  • Biore Cleansing Oil 150ml
  • Shiseido Tiss Deep Off Oil 230ml – link
  • Shiseido Perfect Watery Oil 230ml – link
  • ROSETTE Cleansing Paste 120g – link
  • Bifesta Eye Makeup Remover 145ml (x2)

Makeup

  • Creer Beaute La Rose de Versailles Oscar Impact – link
  • Heroine Make Impact Liquid Eyeliner Black
  • Heroine Make Impact Liquid Eyeliner Super Waterproof Black – link
  • Kate Lasting Eyebrow W BR-3
  • BROWLASH EX Eyebrow Pencil And Liquid
  • Kanebo Media Brow DB (x2)
  • Cezanne Burashitsuki Eyebrow Deep Brown
  • Seria Eyebrow Pencil
  • Integrate Eyebrow
  • Kanebo Media Brow Powder
  • Esprique Foundation Brush
  • Canmake Cream Cheek

I don’t have the bad habit of hoarding my products, but Japan did get the better of me. EVERYTHING AT HALF THE USUAL PRICE HERE! SO MANY PRODUCTS I’VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE! GOTTA TRY THIS! AND THAT! AND THAT AS WELL!

Now I will work hard to finish them! (๑•̀ㅂ•́)و

(But oh, I’ve already finished some of them… since… the Japan trip was 5 months ago already =.=ll God I’m so tardy. Got to change that)

Damage Report II

Alright, I have gone temporarily mad. The AmorePacific store on Gmarket had a sale right after I discovered the Hanyul line was revamped. The old Hanyul products were on 20 to 40% sale. Mamonde was 30% off. Plus from the other side of Pacific, iHerb was on 10% off. Of course I had to make use of the chance to try some new products!

It doesn’t help that work is getting so much more stressful at this time of the year. A little retail therapy is due.

Damage Report II 01

  1. Real Techniques Stippling Brush & Powder Brush — I have been using the Ecotools Bamboo Foundation Brush for my BB creams, but finally gave in to my curiosity and bought brushes from Real Techniques. They are so wonderfully dense and soft.
  2. Hanyul Rich Effect Cream Foundation SPF25 PA++ — This is my first official foundation after dabbling here and there with BB creams and tinted moisturizers. Like all Hanyul make up, it veers on the edge of being too yellow and has poor range of colors.
  3. Hanyul Rich Effect Twin Pact SPF28 PA+++
  4. Skinfood Peach Sake Silky Finish Powder — Based on reviews, this seems to be quite comparable to the Jurlique Rose Silk Finish Powder, which I’m running out of.
  5. Nature Republic Shine Blossom Blusher
  6. Mamonde Shimmer Skin Primer
  7. Mamonde Real Skin Founder SPF33 PA++ — “Founder?” I honestly thought it was a case of bad English until I noticed it is described as a “foundation+powder” combo. Interesting.

Damage Report II 02

  1. Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque
  2. Mamonde Natural Peeling Gel — I’m running out of the Cure Natural Aqua Gel, and it’s really expensive. Mamonde is a lot more affordable, but I’m not sure if it is as good.
  3. Hanyul Optimizing Serum — Repurchased the 120 ml jumbo-sized version. To be honest, I think I’d feel much more excited to repurchase the Rich Effect Revitalizing Cream (read review) than this one, but I do have too many moisturizers to use up and no back ups for serums.
  4. Mamonde Age Control Power Serum — Just to try out something from the Mamonde skincare range.
  5. Hanyul Rich Effect Whitening Powder Serum — Another repurchase. I wasn’t even entirely why I like it so much even though I don’t see visible results.
  6. Hanyul Ga-eum Whitening Cream (한율 가음미백 크림) — If I’m not wrong, this is part of a Hanyul line only available via television shopping. It’s quite interesting that there are shopping channels on TV, and apparently also door-to-door sales in Korea still.

Damage Report II 03

  1. Mamonde Daily Moisture Sun Cream SPF35 PA++
  2. Kiss My Face Face Factor Sunscreen SPF 30 
  3. Verite Ice UV Sun Shot SPF 30 PA++ — This is a gift with purchase, seeing that I bought so much from the AmorePacific store. It’s one of those spray-and-go sunscreens that reduces the hassle of rubbing the product in.

At this point I’m more excited to try products from Mamonde than anything else. With Hanyul I already know what to expect, but Mamonde is totally new to me. By the way, the new Hanyul lines are now available on AmorePacific store on Gmarket. GOGET’EM!