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Alisa

@nazxxn

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About Me

General Information

  • Ethnicity: Other
  • Skin Tone: Medium
  • Skin Type: Sensitive
  • Hair Thickness: Fine
  • Hair Type: Wavy
  • Hair Color: Black

Personal Information:

  • Beauty Interest: Skincare devotee
  • Age Range: 18-24
  • Location: Malaysia
  • Ingredient Preference: Anti-oxidants, Fragrance Free
  • Are you a mommy to be?: No

I wanted to like this product, I really did. With a nice low pH of ~5-6 (tested), claims of being suitable for sensitive skin types like mine, and a 10 non-added formula, I approached this brand as a whole with positive expectations. Unfortunately, things did not turn out as well as I hoped.

// First off, the scent is very, very strong. It has a kind of earthy herbal scent, which might be great for some who enjoy aromatherapy; but as I am sensitive to scents... this is easily the greatest dislike I had for this product. In fact, it smells even stronger than the Cleansing Foam from the same line.

Upon closer inspection, it's obvious to note that the strong scent is due to a combination of a few essential oils. Which, is not a good sign for sensitive skin types as essential oils in generally can trigger sensitivity issues. YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary), though.

// Now, fine, strong scent aside, I did like the cool dual-layered concept. With a medium liquid consistency, you have to shake the bottle to mix the two layers evenly before application, and once sprayed/patted onto the skin, the product sinks into the skin easily, leaving a hydrated layer. Here's the catch, though: I do not like the spraying mechanism. Personally, I feel that it's too harsh and quick for my liking, hence not evenly distributing the product and my having to mist my face multiple times just to get an even first coat. Thankfully, after a friend's advice, I took to spraying the mist onto my palms and then patting it onto my skin instead. And it works so much better.

// However, while testing this out and making sure the rest of my skincare remained unobtrusive as possible, I came to realise that while yes, my skin began to look more even-toned and brighter due to increased hydration, tiny clusters of whiteheads began to spread all over my face (+ a random irritated pimple on my left cheek). And, unsurprisingly, after I cut it out from my routine, all of that went away almost immediately. Sigh. Maybe the product is just too rich for my combination skin type?

// Overall, I'd give this a decent 3/5. I do feel that the spraying mechanism could be improved a ton to distribute the product evenly, and that the essential oils could be ommitted, but overall, it's not a bad product per se. It just didn't fit well with my skin. But hey, that's where the YMMV stance rings true, I guess?

 

- L'Herboflore Immortelle Uplift Firming Mask



Notable ingredients: Aloe leaf extract, Cucumber fruit extract, Helichrysum italicum extract, Sodium hyaluronate.

//

Claim: "Enhances the smoothness and flexibility of skin to slow down the effects of aging; effectively softens, brightens, hydrates and soothes skin."

//

Scent: Mild floral scent, which becomes gradually unnoticeable.

//

Material: Medium-thin cotton. Feels quite "cushion"-y and soft on the skin; doesn't tear that easily, so that's good.

//

Fit: Fits facial contours okay, but too short for my forehead area. Some excess (ie. needed to properly adjust and fold here and there) at the bottom half of my face. Good thing is that the mask has slits, so it's easier to adjust.

//

Essence: 30mL. Clear runny liquid. Absorbs into skin without any tackiness, and a decent amount left in packet after use.

//

During wear: Refrigerated, so nice and cooling; nothing to complain about.

//

Effects: Mask was still fairly damp after 20 mins, especially at the bottom half of my face. Peeling it off, my skin looked noticeably brighter - as if I put on a layer of CC cream that's a shade or two too light for me. 😂 But after waiting a few mins, skin was just left more even toned and not as freakishly pale, haha. Skin felt more hydrated, but large pores were still noticeable.

//

Moisture test results (only forehead area measured as this is the driest part of my face):
Before (10 mins wait after toner/serum): 39%

After taking off mask + patting in essence: 44%
After 10 mins wait time: 36%

//

Verdict: 3/5.Overall, it’s a decent mask. Not sure about the anti-aging effects as that would take time. However, results weren't amazing enough in comparison to its market price to garner a higher score.

// Notable ingredients: Helianthus Anuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Ceramide 3, Brassica Oleracea Italica (Broccoli) Sprout Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Madecassoside, Panthenol, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Sprout Extract, Spirulina Platensis Extract, Allantoin, Tocopheryl Acetate.


// Cautionary ingredients (especially for sensitive skin): Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Lavendula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Peel Oil.
*essential oils are notorious for causing skin sensitivity/irritation, but YMMV.

  • pH level: ~6 (tested)
  • Weight: 150g

  • Packaging: Sturdy opaque white plastic tube with a flip top cap.

  • Scent: Strong scent reminiscent of citronella, which I usually associate with insect repellents. I'm assuming the scent comes from all the essential oils mixed in. Personally, I hate how alarmingly aggressive the scent is. Doesn't make for a nice routine wash, in my opinion.

  • Texture/Colour: Cream texture with the tiniest "micro capsules" that break and "absorb" into the rest of the cleanser once lathered. Creates a mild foam once mixed in with water. White in colour when swatched.


My review/how I used it:

I've used this cleansing foam as a morning cleanser, as a first PM cleanser, and as a second PM cleanser, and I definitely like it the most as a second PM cleanser by far. Due to its ability in deep cleansing the skin, when I used it in the AM, I felt that it cleansed my skin too thoroughly that I was actually alarmed to realise that it made my skin squeak! Thus, it was no surprise that I felt that the cleanser left my skin relatively dry after washing in the mornings.

However, as a second PM cleanser, if I had any film/residue left after oil cleansing, it did a good job in getting rid of all of that without leaving any tightness or squeaky sounds. So it reinforces my assumption that while it's good at being a second cleanser, as a first cleanser, it falls short. Moreover, as it deep cleanses well, it did work in wicking away the sunscreen and environmental pollutants when I used it as a first PM cleanser, HOWEVER it did also wick away some moisture from my skin (according to my skin analyzer). So that's... not a good sign.

Anyway, while I would've rated it a decent 3/5 from this analysis, I had to bump it down a grade as I found out that while I used this cleanser as my primary cleanser for a few weeks straight, I gradually found small whiteheads/pustules appearing all over my face. I did take the cleanser out of my routine and later reintroduced it to see if it really was the cleanser, and I have to say that yes, it is. So that's disappointing...

Overall, I'd have to rate this a 2/5. While I wouldn't mind recommending it as a second cleanser, I'm afraid I can't recommend this as any other type of cleanser. I also must say that for a line branding itself as ideal for dry/sensitive skin types, I do feel that it falls short as I'm not too sure on why there's so much essential oils included in the ingredients. Sure, there are good ingredients such as Ceramide 3 which aids in strengthening the skin's barrier, but the strong fragrance is a bit too much. After all, essential oils are infamous for causing skin sensitivity, so maybe less of that, please?

// Notable ingredients: Aloe, Salicylic Acid, Niacinamide, Bitter Melon (anti-acne, anti-inflammatory)

// Claims: "Controls sebum secretion to maintain skin balance."

// Scent: Ugh, the scent for this was so strong coming out from the packet that I almost just threw it out immediately. But nope, I could never waste masks, so onto my face it went. In my opinion, it does smell like its namesake (I think), but also mixed with some underlying menthol. Once worn, the scent does become milder tho (thank god). It doesn't give me a headache, but... it definitely smells bitter(???) lol.

// Material: Cotton. Relatively thin. Can be torn if desired. comes with a plastic, perforated backing.

// Fit: Fits the contours of my face ok, but overlaps at the temples and a bit too wide at the chin area. I did have to spend some time adjusting tho. Also a bit too narrow at the nose bridge that it interferes a bit with my vision lol.

// Essence: 25mL. Colourless. thin, watery essence. Quite runny/drippy at first. A lot of extra essence squeezed out of mask after use. Non-sticky.

// During wear: Cooling as I stored it in the refrigerator prior to use. However, I did find it stinging a bit for the first few minutes... No idea why. It went away soon enough. rest of session was fine.

// Effects: Tore off the mask after the max recommended time as I've learned to adhere to times, especially when they're aimed for oil control/acne purposes (looking at you, Naruko Tea Tree), and found my cheeks a bit red, ugh. Face felt incredibly cold, though. Can't quite say anything in terms of sebum secretion since my skin wasn't over producing oil or anything.. But it did admittedly feel "clean" and fresh after masking. I'm a bit wary of the redness, but there was no itchiness, so it's fine.

// Verdict: Hated the scent, experienced slight stinging sensation and some redness after masking... Overall, I'd definitely not repurchase.

Chica y Chico Skin Texture Toner

// Notable ingredients: Ecocert plant extracts, natural ferments, etc.

// pH level: ~5-6 (tested)

// Claims: "Skin texture toner hydrates rough skin and gives more elasticity with sliding water complex so that your skin looks even and moist. It also removes excess sebum and waste deep inside. Clear up the dry flaky dead skin cells without irritation. Your skin becomes clearer and smoother with this toner."

// Scent: Pretty much scentless, in my opinion.

// Texture/colour: Watery, colourless.

// Rambly review/how I use it:
Chock full of beneficial ingredients and backed by some hefty claims (better illustrated on the Althea website), I was quite intrigued with this toner. And I'm glad to say that it did not disappoint!
.
As I've mentioned previously, the A'Pieu Madecassoside Fluid, while being a great soothing product, lacked the hydration I needed in my routine. so, I decided to try out a decant of the Chica y Chico Toner which I also received from my dear friend, and to my surprise, found it working out amazingly. A few days passed, and I realised how the combination made my skin feel nicely hydrated and soothed, and even felt cool to the touch.
.
Application-wise, I did experiment. and I found the best method to be when I applied it using a cotton pad. But instead of swiping it, I used my Silcot cotton pads which have a kind of "spongy" texture to pat it onto my skin. Each time I only use a small amount, but it still works tremendously to fight my dehydration issues. It's also my go-to product to continue my routine after my acid wait time as the toner works best on dry skin.

// tl;dr: Works well in providing hydration, and even better when combined with my soothing A'Pieu Fluid. In my opinion, it works best when patted on dry skin using a "spongy" cotton pad.

// Verdict: 4.5/5. Docking half a mark as it's quite pricey if not on sale. Otherwise, I love it dearly.

// Claims: "...strengthens skin barrier by providing protective film to the skin. contains 40mg Madecassoside & 30% Centella Asiatica Leaf Water."

// pH level: ~5-6 (tested)

// Scent: Mild herbal-citrus.

// Texture: Viscous, but quite drippy. Rarely has a sticky/tacky finish. Colourless, but slight white tinge of colour while in bottle.

// Rambly review/how I use it:
At a nice, suitable pH and an inoffensive scent & texture, my first impressions of the toner was pleasant. Application-wise, I usually apply 1-2 pumps of the Fluid onto my palm before patting it in. But here's the catch: it's quite underwhelming as a hydrating step. And as I was looking for a Hyaluronic Acid-free hydrating toner, I could only sulk in silence. I've even tried the 7 skin method but to no avail. My skin still felt parched and in need of more moisture every time.
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HOWEVER, as I do suffer from sensitivity issues and am prone to redness, I found that this Fluid helped tremendously by evening out my complexion and calming my skin. I even found the courage to try out chemical exfoliation because I knew I had this toner to fall back on.

// tl;dr: Overall, 3/5 in terms of hydration & 5/5 for soothing benefits. Not the best for the 7 skin method, in my opinion.

// Verdict: 4/5 (might RP actually~)

// Claims: "...strengthens skin barrier by providing protective film to the skin. contains 0.1% Madecassoside & 40% Centella Asiatica Leaf Water."

// Scent: Moderate herbal-citrus, with emphasis on the citrus (probably due to inclusion of essential oils).

// Texture/colour: Light-medium, emollient consistency. White when first applied, but turns colourless once absorbed.

// Rambly review/how I use it:
Layering it on after my emulsion, I find that the Cream works well in soothing facial redness. Its emollient texture also enables it to blend well into the skin and leaves a non-sticky, matte finish. but it does become sticky if overapplied.
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Also works well as a sole moisturiser imo. Whenever I feel like skipping my emulsion, I just use the cream after my toners and it brings about similar soothing benefits. I've never tried it as a spot treatment tho, so I've no idea if it works to spot-treat pimples.
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However, a glaring issue I have is with the packaging. I received my Cream without a protective seal on the tube's opening, and after checking with my friends, apparently it's meant to be that way. a major problem with this is that some of the product may spill from the tube - or worse, leaking to the inside of the box packaging - meaning $$$ down the drain. So I definitely hope they correct this.

tl;dr: nice, emollient cream which can be used layered over more watery emulsions or as a standalone moisturiser. may even be used as a spot treatment apparently, but I've yet to use it as such so info N/A lol. decent and affordable, but packaging issue should be looked into.

Verdict: 4.5/5 (miiight repurchase)

// Notable ingredients: Witch Hazel Extract (astringent), Tranexamic acid (brightening), Salicylic Acid (anti-acne), Sodium Hyaluronate (hydrating), Phytoferulin* (complex formulated with 11 different plant extracts), Tea Tree Oil (antibacterial/anti-acne), etc //

*WARNING: to those sensitive to alcohol like me, this mask contains Ethyl Alcohol.*

// Claims: "Cleanses pores and balances sebum production while providing hydration to reduce blemishes and post blemish marks."

// Scent: Medicated, menthol scent. Very "clean" smelling. relatively mild, so not annoying at all.

// Material: Cotton/fibre. Black in colour (apparently made with activated charcoal).

// Fit: Quite a lot of folds at the bottom half of face, but overall not bad. There's also some space on my forehead that's not covered.. Fits temples and edge of cheeks well. Easy to put on, so that was nice.

// Essence: 26mL. Thin, watery essence. Colourless. Considerable amount left in packet after use and after squeezing out the excess after masking.

// During wear: Nice and cooling. I put it in the fridge for about half an hour beforehand and it was practically cold to the touch. I actually shivered while putting it on, haha. However, I felt itchiness on my face so that was uncomfortable... but it did go away a few minutes later, so...

// Effects: Pores looked smaller, especially on nose! Face also brightened after patting in the extra essence, and did not feel sticky at all once absorbed into the skin. I also had a big pimple near the middle of my face, and the redness lessened after masking. HOWEVER, after letting the essence absorb fully, I did notice that my face looked kind of red. I think my PIE was also more evident. I was curious, so I checked the ingredients list and guys... why did I stupidly buy a mask with Ethyl Alcohol when my skin's sensitive to it UGH. *knocks head* guess this is going in the WNR bin, sadly.

// Verdict: 2/5 (WNR due to sensitivity but still a reasonably good mask!! YMMV)

// Star ingredient: Snail Secretion Filtrate

// Claim: "Ultra moisturizing"

// Scent: Not sure, but the first thing that popped into my head is that it had a"classic sheet mask smell" HAHAHA. Basically, it has a moderate clean scent which you'd usually find in most masks (in my opinion). Not offensive at all.

// Material: Cotton. Medium thickness with relatively coarse material. Was quite surprised at the roughness, to be honest.

// Fit: A bit too big in most places and lacking in a few others. Overall, not the best. However, while I found that there was especially too much fabric at my temples and chin area, it may actually just be due to my face being on the smaller end of the face spectrum.

//Essence: 20mL. Light, clear essence. Some extra still left in packet after use, but not much as it didn't drip out.

// During wear: As the mask was in the fridge for quite a long time, the mask felt soothing and cool on my face. However, I did feel slight itchiness at the end of my right cheek, which prompted me to take off the mask.

// Effects: Redness decreased and skin was more even-toned. However, I found it just so-so on its moisturizing claims. Not that impressed, really. No irritation or itchiness felt after masking, so that's nice.

// Verdict: 3/5. Wonky fit but overall a decent, non-irritating mask but would not repurchase as it was just ok for me.

// Notable ingredient: Red and White Job's Tears Extracts (helps brighten and smooth skin), Yeast Complex B (sebum control), Evermet (pore-minimizing) + lots more like Niacinamide, etc.

// Claims: "Effectively brightens, balances and hydrates skin, while improving dullness and minimizing pores."

// Scent: An ok scent. Not the most pleasant, but not terrible.. OH, it smells like that bitter chinese herbal tea my dad used to buy when I was ill..

// Material: Apparently made from wood-pulp(?), so a fibre mask..? Thicker than My Scheming. Maybe like My Beauty Diary? Fairly easy to put on. Can tear, but not overly delicate as it's still a relatively sturdy material.

// Fit: Ok fit. A bit too big at the chin, and did have to smoothen the wrinkles around the checks. Covers forehead perfectly. Eye area also covered nicely.

// Essence: 25mL. EXTREMELY watery, and not sticky at all (unless you slather it on... which I did later lol).

// During wear: Cooling and soothing. Very relaxing.

// Effects:
As the mask's main function is pore minimizing and brightening, I definitely do see the pore minimizing effect. I've been breaking out a lot lately in small pustules(?) around my cheek area, and so the pores in that area + nose were quite enlarged.. I found that this mask helped remedy that. Not much of an effect on the whiteheads, but CCs looked "calmer" and less noticeable. Skin also felt soothed. HOWEVER, it only brightened the complexion a bit, and hydration was also so-so (not much "plumping" effect)...

// Verdict: 3.5/5. An ok mask, might RP if sale like when I bought it, but not much of a rush to stock up.

- MEDIHEAL x LINE FRIENDS I.P.I Lightmax Ampoule Mask -

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// Notable ingredients: Ascorbyl Glucoside (stable vitamin C-AA2G), Arbutin, Morus Alba Bark Extract.
 
I've always wondered how Mediheal masks fared due to mentions of them in the AB community, and, well, I'm a bit disappointed, to be honest.
 
Packaging is cute, sure, and the small Cony picture on the sheet mask itself is a nice touch, but where it exceeds in quaint design, it lacks in results (in my honest opinion).
 
First off, the scent reminds me of clean bedsheets. So, not the best, but it is psychologically soothing for me lol. The fit was a bit too wide at the temples and too short at the top, so I did have to adjust things here and there. The sheet mask itself is of a thicker material (cotton?) than Taiwanese masks, but thinner than Cosrx's Holy Snails, so quite easy to wear. The texture of the essence reminded me of Hada Labo's Gokujyun Lotion (Moist), but without the stickiness.
 
During wear, the mask felt cooling and comfortable; no irritation/itchiness. Wore this mask for around 20 mins as suggested, and when I peeled it off, there was still considerable essence left, so I just patted the extra onto my face/neck/arms... Which did lead to stickiness, haha.
 
Results: Complexion more even, and redness reduced. Face was also feeling quite dry before, and the mask helped soothe the dryness. However, I was very disappointed that it was not brightening at all since it's advertised as such.
 
Overall, not a bad mask for hydration at all, but would not repurchase to use as a brightening mask.

// Notable ingredients: Niacinamide, Witch Hazel Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Pinus Densiflora Leaf Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tea Tree Leaf Oil.

 

// Claims: "To maintain oil balance and reduce acne formation; designed for oily and sensitive skin type to calm and soothe the skin."

 

// Scent: Mild herbal-ish scent. Reminds me a bit of the Illi Mugwort Mask, but much more bearable. I actually quite like it.

 

// Material: Very thin cotton. Surprised me when I opened the packet and was trying to put it on. As a result, it took me a bit of a struggle to unfold the mask, but very worth it when I was spreading it onto my face because it felt so nice and soft and smooth. No plastic backing.

 

// Fit: Near perfect, actually. Fits my facial contours and the rest of my face very well. the only small gripe would be the smidge of uncovered space around the nose and mouth area, but that's only if I were to be super picky. very impressed.

 

// Essence: 21mL. Mask was soaked with clear, watery essence. Relatively runny. Not much left in packet (no dripping at all) after usage.

 

// Wear time: 20 mins (rec time: 10-20 mins)

 

// During wear: Nice and soothing. No irritation or itchiness. Really liked it.

 

// Effects:
So... I have mixed feelings towards this mask. Basically, my face was red pre-masking, and as the mask's claims is to soothe, I expected the redness to decrease at least somewhat.. And after 20 mins (I actually hesitated taking it off at this point because the mask still felt relatively wet to the touch, haha), I found my face hydrated and more even-toned! Not much brightening effects despite containing niacinamide but it wasn't advertised to do so anyway. there was a lot of essence left after masking.

HOWEVER, here's where it gets iffy; after waiting a few mins for the extra essence to absorb, my whole face gradually reddened and felt itchy. So unfortunately, I might be allergic to something in the mask.. sigh. I thought moisturiser would help soothe things, but it didn't, and it was too late to wash everything off. anyway, it might or might not be the mask's fault because I've been off my rashes medication, so... Either way, definitely not something I look forward to experiencing again, eep.

 

// Verdict: 3/5. Fit was near perfect, effects were as advertised. However, the itchiness put me off so I'm docking marks for that..

// Notable ingredients: Alpine Glacier Water, Sodium Hyaluronate, Elastin, Collagen, Amino Ccids, etc.

// Claim: "Mask intensively hydrates dry skin leaving bright and youthful skin."

// Scent: Pleasant, "fresh" perfume scent. Very mild, so not at all annoying/overwhelming.

// Material: Cotton. Not too thin nor thick; an okay medium. No mask backing, so had to be careful while unfolding.

// Fit: Fits quite well for the top half of face (no overlaps at hairline-temple area) and not much air bubbles overall. HOWEVER, bottom half was a bit wide for me - the chin and upper lip area, so had to fold... Overall, not bad.

// Essence: 25mL. Syrup texture, clear in colour. mask wasn't drenched with essence, so didn't feel that satisfied when first put on. There was a considerable amount of essence left in the satchet, so took some of that and smoothed over the mask. Made it better.

// Wear time: 23 mins (rec time: 10-20 mins)

// During wear: Was actually doubtful if the essence would be able to be absorbed well.. Soothing and cooling, but I did notice slight stings around the dry parts of my face initially, especially around the upper lip. Went away after a few mins, so not much of an issue.

// Effects: Face was hydrated, but I think the mask was too moisturising for me? Essence was too thick. I decided to take off the mask before it dried/almost dried up completely because it didn't feel that comfortable. Still patted in the extra essence in the satchet onto face/neck/decolletage/arms/knees but it just felt really sticky to me.. Overall, yes, it does leave a sticky finish and after waiting for most of the essence to be absorbed, I applied aqueous cream (prescription) to minimise it a bit since it felt uncomfortable.

// Verdict: 1.5/5. The sticky, thick, syrupy essence is not for me, I guess. don't really like the material of the mask either.

The Galactomyces 95 Essence was my first Cosrx product, admittedly, and also my first "empty". I first bought this to primarily test out how my skin would react to galactomyces ferment filtrate as I've read that many FTEs which boast brightening properties go heavy on it. And as the Cosrx contained minimal ingredients and niacinamide (my HG brightening ingredient), I thought this would be my best bet.

 
On my first try of the essence, I noticed an almost instant brightening effect. Unfortunately, it was also followed by some CCs. But, due to my stubbornness, I followed through, and the CCs showed up less while my complexion continued to brighten and even out.
 
However, as I've been breaking out a lot lately and have coincidentally ran out of the essence, I will resist the urge of opening the back up I purchased and evaluate how my skin reacts without it.
 
Overall, the essence definitely helped in brightening up my complexion despite mixed reviews online. However, I might also be one of those people who do not react well to galactomyces in general. Only time (and lots of research and testing) will tell, I guess!

// Notable ingredients: Red Ginseng Water, Snail Secretion Filtrate.

 
The mask was soaked well in essence, and came out pink-peach in colour rather than the usual white. It appears transparent once put on. The mask is sturdier and fairly thick than the sheet masks I'm used to, which means that it's easier to maneuver onto the face but also that it may be more difficult for the essence to absorb into the skin.
 
Essence is quite slimy and thick as well. Cooling, and the scent omg.. 😍😍 It has a faint, pleasant scent and I enjoyed having it on my face because of this reason especially. It's a bit flowery, maybe? Not overpowering at all!
 
Wear time was around 14 minutes. So not as long as I usually wear my sheet masks. not sure if this was because the mask dried up or I was busy... The results were okay. My face was nicely moisturised, but I did feel like the essence took more time to absorb (since it's quite thick), so my face was a little "slimy". Not much brightening effects.
 
Overall, a good mask. Definitely not the best there is for my skin, but I'd totally repurchase if I find it on sale or anything. I really, really love the smell!
 
// Verdict: 3/5 (but YMMV!)

// Claims: "The highly moisturising all-in-one ampoule makes the skin hydro-radiant. contains 90% honey extract."

// Scent: Moderate sweet scent reminiscent of artificial honey.

// Texture: Viscous, "gooey" texture. Prone to stickiness. faint, golden light brown in colour.

// Rambly review/how I use it:
I experimented a lot with this, but when I first used it, I remember that I was rebuilding my routine from scratch and used this straight after cleansing by smearing it on thickly for max hydration (also aimed to use as a sleeping pack). It worked ok, but I found that it felt too sticky and heavy on my skin. Later, I used it in place of a light moisturiser instead by spreading it onto my palms evenly before patting it onto my face. This helped me to not over-apply and hence reduced that sticky feeling. surprisingly, it also helped my skin absorb it better! Overtime, I noticed that while it did make my skin appear duller at first upon application, I found that it actually brightened my complexion in the long run.
HOWEVER, after abandoning it for awhile, I tried using it again as I was lacking hydrating products, and... It wasn't pretty. After a few hours of application, my face felt tight and the next day, I woke up to an angry red face. So I jumped ship immediately. I still don't know what happened.

// tl;dr: As it is marketed as an "all in one" ampoule, it does work well as a standalone moisturising product, ie. no hydrating toners/essences/serums necessary. It has long term brightening effects, but can be sticky if over-applied. However, I did experience a freak incident of my skin turning red due to sudden sensitivity..

// Verdict: 3/5 (overall, a good hydrator which def saves time in a hectic lifestyle, but generally not "wow" enough for my skin to warrant a repurchase, especially since it takes a long time to use up anyway.

// Claim: Whitening.

 
// Scent: Sweet syrup with notes of bitterness. A bit weird at first, but a scent I grew to like, surprisingly.
 
// Material: "40g tencel, high skin-fit fabric" (according to @altheakorea) In my opinion, it is of medium thickness, and is not easily torn. Relatively easy to tug around to adjust as well.
 
// Fit: Not bad. Didn't fit the contours of my face perfectly, but nose/center area was spot on. Mask adhered well, and felt as if it was 'hugging' my skin.
 
// Essence: 25g. Thick, brown syrup texture. To be honest, I thought it was going to be sticky, but when I swatched it on my arm and patted it in, it sunk into the skin seamlessly!
 
// Wear time: 25 mins (rec time: 10-20 mins)
 
// During wear: Soothing and cooling. Clung well to face and wasn't at all annoying (texture and scent-wise).
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// Effects:
Pre-masking: Skin quite dry, and a bit red. Actually did a BHA session prior to masking.
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After masking: Skin did show nice, subtle brightening effects. redness evened out, and overall felt very hydrated and soothed. Any dryness I felt prior to masking was gone and I especially appreciated how the essence absorbed REALLY well into the skin, leaving no stickiness at all. Did not even feel the need to even follow up with a moisturiser.
 
// Verdict: 4-4.5/5. A mask I could forsee calling HG... if it wasn't relatively pricey. Brightening effect wasn't as dramatic as Taiwanese masks, but it's still acceptable. I also ADORE the packaging! Sturdy material and so aesthetically pleasing!! Repurchase if sale, definitely!

Notable ingredients: Niacinamide, Betaine, Jania Rubens Extract, Sea Water, Ceramide 3, Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate.
 
Claims: "Makes skin tone look bright and clear and provides moisture to dry skin; dual sheet makes skin feel elastic and helps skin absorb effective substances as it closely adheres to skin."
 
Scent: Mild "clean" smell which bordered on being scentless.
 
Material: Medium cotton, fairly comfortable on the skin. Easy to grip to adjust fit.
 
Fit: Um.. not the best lol. To be honest, it was a bit too big for me.
 
Essence: 18mL (upper part) + 18mL (lower part). Colourless, watery essence. Not much left in packet after use.
 
Wear time: 30 mins (rec time: 10-20 mins)
 
During wear: Quite cooling. However, I did notice a bit of itchiness at my neck area for the first few mins. Also, since the mask extended well below my chin area, it did feel a bit uncomfortable wearing the mask unless I laid down due to the folds at the neck (feeling might be avoided if material was thinner?). Otherwise, an ok masking session.
 
Effects:
Pre-masking: Skin looked quite dull and despite layering hydrating products after AHA session, felt and looked relatively congested and as if it did not absorb well.

After masking: Face and neck area looked more hydrated and less dull. Due to the coolness felt during masking, complexion looked brighter and less redness overall. However, when I was swatching the essence on the back of my left hand, I found that my skin became irritated and itchy and even noticed a spot of redness after masking (I swatched the bit of essence prior to letting the mask sit). So a bit confusing since my face seemed fine?
 
Verdict: 3/5. Overall, the mask was okay, but due to the poor fit, ie. excess material, and the strange allergic reaction I had to the essence, I'm a bit wary of it honestly. It did do well to hydrate my face after my exfoliation session though. So it definitely delivered in that aspect.

Claims: "...nourishes and moisturizes the skin.."

Scent: Ah, this smells like straight up honey! Opening the packaging to this was such a lovely surprise. The soft, sweet scent (also lowkey reminiscent of brown sugar) made me so happy while masking lol.

Material: Very thin and quite transparent, especially when straight out of the packet. Comes with a plastic backing.

Fit: Near perfect. Fits facial contours almost perfectly, but weirdly, the nose bridge area is too wide for me. material can be stretched slightly to be adjusted tho.

Essence: 25g. Quite watery/runny, but not too bad. Basically an essence which is on the lighter gel side. It's.. quite sticky though. Not a lot left in packet after use, but enough to smother on arms and neck.

Wear time: 30 mins (rec time: 20-30 mins)

During wear: The sweet honey scent lasted throughout the masking session, but as it's quite mild, I didn't mind at all. Nice and soothing. Non-irritating.

Effects:
Pre-masking: Skin quite sore due to stress and lack of care. Face was fairly splotchy with CCs on forehead area. Overall, my face was just... in pain lol.

 
After masking: Skin felt so soothed! At first, redness was still evident on face, but after patting in the essence and following up with my usual moisturiser, face looked fairly bright and much more even-toned with no redness!
 
Verdict: 4.5/5. Overall, I really like this mask. However, I... am a bit on the fence about the stickiness of the essence. It does go away though.

Claims: "...for mild and deep cleansing with the ingredients extracted from natural black grains."
 
Scent: Moderate herbal scent. Very pleasant, in my opinion, as it does not smell artificial at all.
 
Texture: Light, and more on the "drippy" side.
 
Rambly review/how I use it:
Honestly, this is definitely one of the best cleansing oils I've had the pleasure of using. While it did take initial trial and error to find a "sweet spot", I was internally crying when I found my bottle gradually emptying. It has an oily, light texture and spreads onto the skin easily. Washing it off, it doesn't emulsify that much and does leave a "film" on the skin. However, this is probably to avoid irritating/over-drying the skin as it's especially geared towards sensitive skin types. I usually use my soaked konjac sponge to mildly scrub off the oil before following up with my second cleanser, and it works like a dream. In terms of efficacy, the oil even excels in removing my most stubborn makeup products such as the Heroine Make Kiss Me Mascara! It does however still struggle with removing the famous Peripera Lip Tint, but that thing's basically indestructible.
 
tl;dr: Again, one of the best cleansing oils I've used so far. Ideal light texture, pleasant aromatherapy-esque scent, and cleans off sunscreen and makeup like a dream (with the right "technique" lol). I've also found that overtime, it helped to deep cleanse my skin to the point of reducing my CCs/clogged pores in general and improved my skin texture, so I definitely fell in love at that point, haha.
 
Verdict: 4.5/5. While I truly love this oil due to its cleansing abilities, I'm unfortunately docking half a mark because it is quite pricey... I mean, it's not completely unaffordable but er... 😅 I'd definitely repurchase this if I ever saw it on sale, though!

Claims: "...is designed to wipe away excess dirt, oil and purify clogged pores with exfoliating pre-moistened pads."

 
pH level: 4.0±0.5 (from official website)

Scent: Strong tea tree+citrus scent - probably due to essential oils used.

Material/texture: Circular cotton pads with one embossed side & one plain, smooth side.

Rambly review/how I use it:
Advertised as an exfoliating toner to remove residue after cleansing and/or to smoothen the complexion before makeup, I was disappointed to find that it irritated my skin whenever I used it that way. BUT, I was determined to find a way to prevent wastage, and since I was new to chemical exfoliation at the time, I decided to use this (1x/week) in the BHA step of Fiddy's "SF minimizing procedure" of BHA-clay mask-oil cleanse before following up with my usual routine and a sheet mask to prevent moisture loss. Thankfully, this has worked wonders for me! So while it takes a huge chunk of time whenever I choose to use the Cosrx pads, the smooth skin I get in return is definitely worth it.

tl;dr: I only use the pads when I feel that my skin is too clogged via Fiddy's method as a BHA substitute, as I cannot use them daily due to my skin being easily irritated from physical exfoliation. for this, It works well, but the full routine does take out a chunk of my time. However, the soft skin I get in return is usually worth it.
 
Verdict: 3/5. Ny rating would be 2/5 if used everyday in place of a toner as it sadly causes my skin irritation, but 4/5 for a weekly deep exfoliation. Hence, an average of 3/5 overall.

Claims: "Lightweight snail gel cream containing 74% of snail secretion filtrate."

Scent: Pretty much odourless.

Texture/colour: Light, gel texture which spreads evenly onto skin. Colourless.

 
Rambly review/how I use it:
Not much of an in-depth review this time 'round as I have... nothing much to say for this. I've tried using this as a standalone moisturiser (nope), as a precursor to heavier moisturisers (nope), as an occlusive after light moisturisers (ok) and as a sleeping pack (ok but still meh), and while I evidently do like it fine as an occlusive, whenever I took it out of my routine, I saw no diff in my skin at all. Now, as this was one of the products raved about in the AB community, I was sad to see it so underwhelming. Though, YMMV, of course!

tl;dr: Works alright as an occlusive, with lots of hydrating layers underneath. Doesn't provide much moisture for me, so meh. Then again, my skin is pretty meh with gel moisturisers in general, so... Also nothing notable in terms of pimple/scar healing.
 
Verdict: 3/5. Still a decent rating as I don't remember it causing breakouts or irritations. However, I always got bored of it so I may not have used it consistently enough to garner any true "oh my god, this is amazing!" moments. So, YMMV.

Packaging: Sturdy frosted plastic bottle which is minimalistic and quite aesthetically pleasing. Has a pump-type dispenser which I truly appreciate, which is covered by a transparent plastic cap.

 

Claims: "Contains Betula Platyphylla Japonica Juice 70% (Birch Sap) and exclusive ultra-moisturizing ingredients to help maintain water deeply on and under the skin." // Suitable for all skin types, including sensitive, oily, and acne-prone skin. hydrates, protects and comforts the skin with an oil-free, lightweight formula.

 

Scent: Smells extremely similar to the One Step Pimple Clear Pad. Strong citrus-tea tree scent, which is probs due to the lemon and tea tree oils. In my opinion, as it is in a more "liquid" form, I felt it was too strong for my nose and I didn't really enjoy it every time I used it, especially because the scent takes A LONG TIME to dissipate and I just (psychologically) felt my skin reacting to the essential oils negatively. Also note that it's kind of deceiving to be named "oil free" when it does, in fact, contain oils...

 

Texture/colour: A mix between lotion and gel, imo. Has a "slip" to it which might be bc of the Dimethicone. Spreads easily. Not watery at all as when first applied to the skin, it does not have the tendency to drip off the hand (during swatch)/face so dotting it on the face and spreading it onto the skin would probs be the best method of application. White in colour when first pumped out of the bottle, and turns colourless when spread and patted into the skin. Does take awhile to absorb tho, and tends to make my face look dull and shiny.. And I'm guessing the shininess was mostly bc the moisturiser just DID NOT ABSORB.. Like at all. It felt like it was just sitting on top of my skin, resisting its demise of absorbing into my skin to leave me as well hydrated as it promised smh. Hence, I dont feel that it moisturises my dehydrated skin that well  (due to it being unable to absorb well), esp during my PM routine where I usually bombard my skin with hydration.

 

Rambly review/how I use it:

As it is on the more heavy side of moisturisers (heavier than emulsions, but lighter than creams by a small margin) I usually used this after my toner/s before sunscreen (AM) or as the last step (PM). And honestly... I found that in the best case scenario, it did nothing for me. And in the worst case, it caused small pimples (mostly whiteheads near cheek area) and caused my face to flush (sometimes it felt like there was a "heaty" feeling where my skin couldnt breathe, so to say). The strong scent also turned me off immensely.

So, really, I always ended up testing it for the 2-3 days before stopping and going back to my baseline gentle routine, before forgetting about it on my shelf... Then remembering and testing it again... Only to be disappointed... And the cycle continued for awhile before I gave up and decided to give it away to a better home before it ends up sadly expiring without much use.

 

tl;dr: Um, a no for me lol. On good days, it did nothing for me, and on bad days, it caused allergic reactions or "heaty" sensations. Also feels too heavy for my skin, so.

 

Verdict: 1/5 (nope. WNRP ever. I honestly don't get what the hype is about and how people actually like it. however, I do think it may just be my skin being a bit too reactive again I guess. sucks that I didn't like it at all.) 

 

 

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