Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Review: Sonia Kashuk's Brush and Sponge Cleanser

I'm almost out of my regular brush cleanser and was looking up reviews online for my next purchase when I saw lots of excellent reviews for the Sonia Kashuk cleanser. I was already heading out to Target and decided to grab one since the price wasn't bad at all.
By the way...There will be photos of my sink later on. I apologize for my dirty sink! It's crazy old, stained and rusted beyond possible cleaning. Fair warning!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Review: Mizon Snail Repair BB Cream

So, I'd like to apologize in advance as I really need a better camera than this one to take photos of some of the products I purchase. My camera really hates metallic surfaces and so the photos don't show up as well as they should. Also, I do have tattoos and that gets in the way of swatches! I tried to show some photos I'd taken recently with me wearing the BB cream, but they're pretty much awkward selfies...So...yeah.
Bear with me please!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Review: Innisfree Jeju Volcanic Pore Clay Mask

While walking around Myeongdong (pretty much in circles...) and getting lost actually did some wonders for me! I ended up face to face with Lee Min Ho for the first time ever. Well, kind of. Thank you store window! Even with a map and the gigantic Nature Republic store to guide me, I still couldn't find the restaurant I wanted to go to, but ended up finding an Innisfree store that was still open! They had a nice sale going on and the store was almost empty too! At the time LMH was the male spokesperson for the brand and so they had his face plastered everywhere with life size cardboard cut outs placed everywhere. Man, that boy is attractive. ANYWAYS.
My main goal this time around was to grab the Black Sugar mask from SkinFood and the Jeju clay mask from Innisfree. Both goals accomplished!

Product Info:
Innisfree Jeju Volcanic Pore Clay Mask

Where to get it:
Innisfree Stores: 12000 (I got mine with a discount sale they were having - ₩9000)
RoseRoseShop: 9.00
KoreaDepart: 12.18
Sasa: 15.70

This Jeju volcanic scoria clay mask intensively absorbs sebum and clarifies skin pores. This pure and rare ingredient, formulated from solidified lava caused by volcanic eruptions in Jeju island, absorbs impurities and sebum that are deeply embedded within skin pores.

-Tightens pores
-Removes sebum
-Offers deep cleansing
-Enhances skin tone
-Provides cooling effects

Water, Butylene Glycol, Titanium Dioxide, Silica, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Trehalose, Volcanic Ash, Cetearyl Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Clyceryl Stearate, Bentonite, Zinc Oxide, Polysorbate 60, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Opuntia Coccinellifera Fruit Extract, Orchid, Camellia Japonica, Cryptomeria Japonica Leaf Extract, Bambusa Vulgaris Extract, Theobroma Cacao Seed Powder, Kaolin, Polyvinyl Alcohol, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, PVP, Dextrin, PEG-100 Stearate, Sorbitan Stearate, Cellulose Gum, Xanthan Gum, Lactic Acid, Tetrasodium Pyrophosphate, Disodium EDTA, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Red Oxide of Iron (CI 7741)

So, here we have two potentials for irritants and a few triggers for some acne break outs. Ironic as this mask is supposed to help controlling the sebum to prevent those, but anyways!
First on the list is Cetearyl Alcohol. It's ranking a 4 our 5 for acne, and a 3 out of 5 for irritant. On the safety bar, it's still listed as safe.
Hydrogenated Veggie Oil is our last guy on the list. It's listed as an emollient ingredient and ranks a 3/5 for acne, and anywhere from a 0-1 for irritation.
There are a few ingredients on the list where the safety bar is in the yellow, or middle, but nothing red or raising gigantic flags.

It really doesn't smell like anything actually, or at least to me anyways. I mean, it kind of has the "clayish" smell to it, but I literally have to stick my nose into the jar to even get a whiff of that.

The box itself is made from 100% recycled paper (ink is printed from soy ink) and can be recycled, yet again! I really love this about Innisfree as well, as they ask you to return your empties to them to recycle into new products. It feels a bit sturdier than a cardboard box, but it it is what it is. The Innisfree logo is on the top, and 2/4 sides are in Korean (does the front of the box really count?) leaving one side completely dedicated to English. It explains the concept, how to apply, and the ingredients, pretty nice eh? Although, it leaves out the nifty story about Volcanic clusters from Jeju, the Innisfree promise, the 4-free system, and their outlook on eco-friendly green life. My only complaint, is it doesn't come with a spatula or any kind of tool to get this out. I end up using a new, clean spoon every time but still a bummer!

Like most clay masks I've used, after a few moments you can see them change colors to show the oil it's soaking up, or how it darkens to show it's dried. This mask....does none of that. It's pretty much the same color through and through, regardless of if you use it for 15 minutes or as an overnight spot treatment. I do enjoy how it's always nice and cool though!

Even after one use I started to notice my skin looking a bit brighter, after several uses there's a definite glow there now. It's also done a significant amount of damage to the congested pores I had on my nose and cheeks. They're definitely a lot less noticeable!  It's a lot easier to put on makeup, and I really don't even need an actual primer now. My foundation used to kind of sit and fill in my pores and would require a primer to help "fill" my skin in so it didn't do that. I'm happy to say I'm able to ditch the primer as there's not a lot for the foundation to sink into anymore (those smile lines are a different story though...). So, it does work wonderfully as a mask for sure. I use a bit of it on my boyfriend's nose as well as he has some pretty bad skin (love you!), and it's helped cleared out a LOT of the pores on his face. He doesn't let me do it consistently enough, which is shame. Tsk tsk!
However, he has noticed enough of a difference that he asks if I can put some on a bit zit that's appeared. I also do the same, just a bit of spot treatments before we go to sleep if need be. It helps either eliminate the bump, or tone down the redness enough that it's hardly noticeable
I've also put some on my shoulders or back when I get a bump from my conditioner and it does help tremendously. My only complaint is that the jar is SO small! I feel like I use this up so fast in such a small amount of time which wouldn't bother me if I was still in Seoul, but being stateside and running out so fast sucks a lot. Next February I'm definitely stocking up -.-!

So for a TL;DR:
For a full face mask I'd use this once or twice a week depending on how oily your skin is.
If you feel like your nose and cheek area have enlarged pores, just use a nose mask maybe twice a week.
OR! If you feel a blemish popping up (I've done this on my face, shoulders, and back), do a spot treatment and place a small amount over the blemish before bed and wake up amazed~

-Several ways to use this product
-Brighter skin
-Tightens pores
-Feels nice and cool while on
-Helps prevent breakouts through deep cleansing

-Small jar!
-Shipping/price hell

Rating: 8/10
I really do love the product and the fact that it really, truly does work like it says. I really wish Innisfree would plop a shop somewhere in the states so we could empty the store daily. I enjoy not only their products, but how they view helping out the world with recyclable boxes, returnable pots, and even the ink is made from soy. How cool is that? Thank you AmorePacific for making another amazing brand for us to enjoy!
The downsides are the size of the pots and the price. You can pay a bit more and get free faster shipping, or pay less and then shipping takes forever. There's no winning here. However, I do like how they've come out with a larger 200ml tube, which also includes instructions on how to use it on the entire body!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Review: Skin79 SeaWeed Cooling Mask

Now, I'm usually pulled into buying a product for the amazing ingredients, the need for it, or even an awesome SA doing their job. Well...this one just looked nifty. Yup. I said it. I bought this and the Rose mask because they looked cool. This one as it's a bright blue see-through gel, and the rose because it had petals inside it...childish? Perhaps. It's been a few months since I've purchased them and can now finally give an in depth review on the Seaweed mask.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Review: Etude House Tear Drop Powder

Etude House is so ridiculously sparkly and pink..I just...I can't go into that store without buying at least $30 worth of stuff. It's so bad for my wallet! I went in on a mission though! My friend uses the Tear Eye Liner and it looks SO pretty on her, so I knew I needed it ASAP. The store was not busy at all and the SA's were kind enough to show me where the liner was and asked if I needed anything else. Before I could say no, thank you though, one SA informed me that they were having a 30% off sale along with a 1+1. HOW EVIL. So, I grabbed...several more things and this jar of sparkliness was one of them.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Review: Sephora Colorful Eyeshadow

When I first found out Sephora was relaunching their entire line, I was so excited as the new packaging and swatches we saw looked more and more luxe and less drugstore. The foundations, lipsticks, and eyeliners were so-so still, but the shadows...ohhhh the shadows. They were beautiful! The cream blushes they came out with were also pretty nifty. The only thing that they took away that I wish they'd kept was the awesome bronzing sculpting disc.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Review: The Faceshop Lovely ME:EX You & Eyes

I'm not entirely sure what I was thinking when I avoided all the 900 thousand Faceshop's the last time I was in Seoul. I don't remember them being really packed, which is my usual reason to avoid a shop, so I have no idea what I was thinking. I mean, I took a bunch of photos of 김현중 (Kim Hyun-Joong) every time I passed a store, and they all had flashing 50% off sales in all the windows. Oi self  T_____T
I finally stopped inside a FS while in Dongdaemun market and it was sad! They were rebuilding it, so they had small pieces of wood laying down to cover the holes in the floor. I tried to wobble all around, but kind of avoided a lot of the areas where i'd have to walk across planks. I looked basically at shadows, grabbed a few things, and left. Stupid! Some of the shadows I grabbed were totally out of my usual range as well. I blame Jung Saemmool and all her use of  light gorgeous shimmery shadows!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Review: Holika Holika Fairy Bakery Eye Shadows

I have to say the few times I went into Holika Holika, it wasn't really a great experience. Of course, I went on the weekends so that was just stupid in general -___-
They were discontinuing a few lines, products, and tools so every time I went in they were having amazing sales, but they were also incredibly packed! I do have to say, for as much as I bought the SA's were kind of mean and...NO SAMPLES! Gahhh~
You read that correctly. No. Samples. I was kind of bummed actually as I spent at least 50 bucks. Who knows... Perhaps Tony Moly and Etude House just spoiled me so much I was just expecting the unusual?

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Review: Skin79 Super Plus Triple Functions Vital Orange BB Cream

I have seen everyone talk about Skin79 and their awesome BB creams for quite a while, but never felt the need to splurge to buy another BB cream that I wasn't sure about. Finally my chance came while I was shopping at Pretty&Cute! They had a Skin79 Summer Special Set that included a 15g travel size orange BB cream and sample sizes of the entire Sue line for $20. I mean, how could you pass that up!?
I couldn't.
I grabbed two.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Review: Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream

Totally late on reviewing this one as my previous blog posts didn't transfer over very well, so I kind of scrapped some of them and started from scratch. This was one of the posts that died. Sad.
I've previously stated that I feel that American BB creams are nothing more than tinted moisturizers with little to no skin benefits, unlike their Asian counterparts who do miracles of wonder and joy. The Smashbox BB cream is actually a tad bit different than it's US friends...

Review: TonyMoly Luminous Pure Aura CC Cream

I know, I'm incredibly late in getting into the CC cream scene. Even though they were a rage the last time I stepped into Myeongdong, I didn't stock up properly like I should have! Stupid! I have since tried samples of Etude House, IOPE, and Holika's CC creams and wondered what was I thinking!? MARCH. In March I will grab you all. ALL OF YOU.
Of course by then there'll be GG or even QQ creams and I'll be once again, so behind in the trends of the latest and greatest.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Review: Lieole Secret Pore Rich Balm

I'd received several samples of this balm and absolutely loved it and squeezed every last drop out of it that I could before it dried out (resealable samples, please!), so when I saw this in store I knew I had to grab it and see if it was just the samples that were amazing, or if it was the actual product.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Review: TonyMoly Backstage Gel Eyeliner #1 Black

I had seen this liner being used on a model on Jung Saemmool's YouTube and knew I had to grab it to see if it was just that creamy and smooth as it was applied, or if it's just her team's magical hands. Of course, anything that her team uses I usually get instantly addicted to...

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Review: Lioele Vita Juicy Foam Cleanser

So, I've heard tons about this brand called Lioele while in the States, but when I went to Korea...I couldn't find a single Lioele store. This left me so confused! Are they just an online store? I was told there was a store in Seongnam but never found one. Oh well...
Anyways, after the failed attempt to find a totally bright pink and Cinderella covered store (think Etude but MORE pink), I just bought a cleanser when I returned from Seoul at Pretty&Cute to try the brand out. Cleansers and lipsticks are the best way to go!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Review: Etude House Skin [Mal:Gəm] Deep Moist

One rainy day in Myeongdong, I was stuck in a corner waiting patiently for a group of school girls to finish up playing with shadows so I could buy some more makeup remover, when I first noticed this line of toners. I'm pretty sure it was the Essential one that caught my attention first as parts of it look bright orangey/yellow. I remember thinking the design was so different than the rest of Etude's packaging and I needed a new toner anyways, so I grabbed the deep moist and tossed it into my growing basket as I just couldn't help myself. Damn you Etude and your awesome packaging/design/products!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Review: Missha M Perfect Cover B.B Cream

I was SO excited to finally step into a real Missha store instead of ordering online, so when I saw the store in Dongdaemun I may or may not have freaked completely out. When I went inside I was kind of sad though. I for some reason thought their products would be a lot cheaper in Korea than from ordering online. Boo! I did end up picking up my usual BB cream and a few other goodies. It's definitely worth a look as they have some of the highest standards in testing in cosmetics, or so I read (plus they just have really pretty stuff in general!).

Review: Tony Moly Backstage Paint Eye Pot

I usually hit up the popular stores in Sinchon on a weekend, or a Friday night for some stupid reason, so this TM store was jammed packed. While waiting to get to the skincare wall, I was just swatching some pretty gel liners and saw these. I originally thought they were gel liners and got really excited. A SA informed me of what they were actually cream eye shadows instead. Since I was already planning on getting some new base colors, and I liked these two I grabbed them before they ran out.

Review: Tony Moly Collagen Moisture BB Cream

I had previously mentioned losing a list of things I wanted to buy when I was heading over to Myeongdong, so I was quite at a lost when I entered Tony Moly and needed to start from scratch. I asked a Sales Associate about BB creams for dry skin and she walked me over to this one and asked me to try it out. Since the store was jam packed (it was night time on a Friday...derp) I really only got a chance to swatch it and smell it. Since the price wasn't bad at ₩15,000, I decided to grab one and a few other things while there.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Review: Missha M B.B Boomer

I originally got quite a few of these as samples to try out when I bought my very first Perfect Cover BB cream and was really excited to get home asap. Oddly, I hated it the first time I wore it outside to work as I thought it faded off really fast and the smell irritated me and threw the rest of the samples away. A few weeks later I was cleaning my vanity and actually found another one I missed and figured since I'd run out of my Etude House Volumer, I'd give it another shot.
I'm SO glad I did

Monday, August 26, 2013

Review: Tony Moly Luminous Goddess Aura BB Cream

Before I went to Seoul, I had this huge list written out of everything that I wanted to buy so I wouldn't forget a single thing as I tend to get easily distracted and buy lots of random things. So, I made sure to put this list in my wallet so I would see it every time I had to pay for something.Yeah, well somehow between Songpa-gu and Myeongdong it slipped and fell out so I was left without my wonderful list and yup...forgot half the things I wanted to buy including this BB cream. I'd gotten samples of it previously and absolutely loved it along with the Aura Beam counterpart, it doesn't hurt that 박지연 (Park Ji-yeon) was their model for this BB cream and I obsess over her eye makeup a bit too much sometimes. It took me a few months before I was able to go back and buy it, but luckily I went when they were having a sale so it ended up being W10,000, which is about 8.98USD. Regardless of loving or hating it later....I mean come on. A BB cream for 9 bucks? Man oh man do I love Seoul~

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Review: Mizon Pore Clearing Push Out Volcanic Gommage

I've been reading about Mizon for quite a while now but have yet to try out any of their products which is odd as their Snail Cream is such a huge hit, and I do love me some snail cream. So I finally found this mask and was absolutely loving the fact that it's clay and wondered if it was similar to the famous Innisfree Jeju mask which is almost impossible to grab where I live.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Review: Stila HD Illuminating BB

Now normally I'm not really into the whole Americanized BB scene as a lot of them are nothing more than hyped up tinted moisturizers with little to no added benefits. This one stood out to me and said "Play with me! PLAY WITH ME." Who knows why. Perhaps it's because it's supposed to illuminate (I love glowing skin!) or it could even be the shiny packaging!

Review: Makeup Forever HD Primer 5/Blue

Product Info:
Make Up Forever - HD Primer Shade: 5/Blue 
$34 1.01 fl. oz/30 ml.

Where to get it:
Sephora: 34.00

"A lightweight, oil-free complexion corrector that enhances the skin's texture and primes the skin for makeup application."

-Softens the skin
-Creates a glow
-Helps foundation last longer

Aqua (Water), Dimethicone, Trisiloxane, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Methylpropanediol, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Squalane, Glyceryl Caprylate, Lauryl PEG/PPG-18/18 Methicone, Phenoxyethanol, Ceteth-10, Laureth-4, Ethylglycerin, Panthenol, Potassium Sorbate, Polysorbate 60, Parfum (Fragrance), Argania Spinosa Extract (Argania Spinosa Kernel Extract), C12-14 Pareth-12, Hydrolyzed Algin, Dodecene, Sorbitan Isostearate, Isostearyl Alcohol, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Polyaminopropyl Biguanide, Tromethamine, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Carbomer, Hexyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Linalool. [CI 19140 (Yellow 5 Lake), CI 75470 (Carmine), CI 77007 (Ultramarines), CI 77288 (Chromium Oxide Greens), CI 77289 (Chromium Hydroxide Green), CI 77491 (Iron Oxides), CI 77492 (Iron Oxides), CI 77499 (Iron Oxides), CI 77742 (Manganese Violet), CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide)] 

This one has two large hits when ran through COSDNA: Laureth-4 and Hydrolyzed Algin. Laureth hits a 5 on acne and a 4 on irritant. Algin hits 4's across the board as it's a thickener and fragrance which can easily irritate sensitive skin. I personally never had problems, but if someone has gentle skin they may want to stay clear of this product or try it on in a Sephora for a swatch test.

It has a clean fresh scent to it with a hint of sweetness which is nice, it's not overly powerful so those with sensitive noses should be fine.

It comes in the standard black MUFE packaging, which is kind of sad that they don't really revamp their product boxes for different things, so you don't accidentally grab a different one. The primer comes in a thin tall plastic bottle which is small enough to not take up any room, but tall enough to be able to easily see and grab. The pump for the actual primer is nice as it's hygienic but also annoying. I was finding at about 1/3 left I'd have to unscrew it and try and dig out enough product for my face as the tubing did not reach the bottom. All this unscrewing and re-sealing did more harm than good and kept drying the product out.


I really wanted to love this product but it's making it very difficult for that to happen. If I don't use a really thick heavy moisturizer to mix this primer in with it, it refuses to spread evenly and has a tendency to clump up. It will also often leave a white residue if I forget to add the moisturizer which shows even though full coverage foundation so, I'll have to take it off after that happens and reapply which is wasting even MORE product. If I do follow all these steps perfectly though, it does even out the redness creating an almost perfect canvas for me to then work with.

-Pleasant smell
-Evens out the redness
-It has a thicker texture to fill in all my fine lines

- Pump quirts out way too much and wastes a lot of product
-It dries extremely fast so I need to work fast
-Dries white if i'm not fast enough so I take it off or it'll leave white spots through foundation
-I need to mix it with a very thick moisturizer to help spread it evenly
-The packaging leaves quite a bit on the bottom and easily dries out.


I really just don't understand the hype for this primer. I like the rest of the line just fine and haven't had any really big issues (aside from the HD foundation), so it's kind of sad that I just can't get this to work for me. I wouldn't repurchase this one at all especially when there are so many other better primers out there for 1/3 of the price and less irritants on the skin. All the pros is has going for it are definitely not enough to weigh out all those pricey cons, plus to use this I need to add a few extra steps in my foundation routine.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Review: Tony Moly Red Appletox Honey Cream

I really had no knowledge of Tony Moly before I went to Korea other than trying some samples I had gotten from ordering BB creams online. They were nice and worked well for how long I had them, but not a lot of places offered much information on the product or ingredient lists which made me slightly hesitant to actually purchase them. So, when I walked into one of the many TM stores in Myeongdong I wasn't really expecting much. THEN....I saw the adorable fruit section. I mean, they're so cute! I had to grab a few for my mom.....and myself of course.
Now, all the labels on the Appletox are in Korean which I am a novice in so please forgive my mistakes and let me know if I need to correct something please!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Review: SkinFood Black Sugar Mask

As I mentioned in a previous post, I had hit up a SkinFood's store in Seoul, South Korea a bit ago and wasn't really looking for things to buy for myself, but ended up grabbing a few goodies. Well, this mask is another one of those goodies!
I had heard a lot about this mask from friends in Seoul as well as seeing it in a lot of window displays around town. From working at Sephora I had heard about the whole sugar mask trend and how amazing they are for your skin as the lemon helps tone and the brown sugar is a natural, gentle exfoliant that gently polishes the complexion. Seeing as I already had the Fresh Sugar Face Polish, I was curious as to how this well this one worked.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Review: Tony Moly Tomatox Magic Massage Pack

Another Tony Moly product!  I know, I know, but I can't help it I'm absolutely addicted to their products and their store! I got this as a gift for a translation that I did, but I've used it enough to comment on how well it performs. I have such a back log from switching blog platforms, so I'm trying to get caught up with all my old reviews and such. Hopefully it'll happen soon!

Review: SkinFood Watery Berry Serum

My friend and I were shopping around the 신촌점 (Sinchon) area when I spotted SkinFood and begged her to come with me inside as my Korean was still lacking. I went in originally to grab something for my mother but after seeing how cheap a lot of the wash-off masks were I realized I needed to grab like, 10. I asked the SA  if they had a line that was specifically for dry or dull skin as 14 hours on a plane is definitely not fun for the skin. She pointed me towards the Watery Berry line and started to tell us about the different berry extracts and how it contains Sodium Hyaluronate, which is able to hold up to 1,000 times it's weight in water. I finally completed a month of use so I figured it was safe to review on it.

Review: Tony Moly Broccoli Sprout Cleansing Cream

I first got this cleansing cream as a sample when I ordered a BB cream from Missha last year. I tried it, loved it and then forgot about it entirely until I went to Seoul a few months ago. While looking around a Tony Moly store in Myeongdong I kept seeing this guy, but couldn't remember if I liked it or not. I asked for a sample but then totally forgot to try it while I was there. A total and complete failure on my part. To make it worse, I didn't even realize this until I got home and saw my sample mixed in with other samples I had received from other shops. ^^;
Luckily I live a few miles from the Pretty & Cute flagship store and my boyfriend told me to grab one immediately. I paid $16.99 at the time, but as of right now they have it on sale!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Review: SkinFood Steam Milk Bubble Mask

I was shopping at the Pretty & Cute store by my house and decided I needed more SkinFood in my life after buying and loving their super famous Black Sugar Face Mask. I saw the cute milk carton and it was pretty much decided. Yup, purchasing.