As I was preparing to go into a longer testing period with other products, I wanted to try out a few items for a couple of weeks just to see how they worked on my skin. This is just an initial impressions blog review, as I used these 3 items in a very light skin care daytime routine (light as in less products ~ at least for me!)
Disclaimer: All products were purchased by me. Blog post contains affiliate links
boscia Sake Treatment Water to Hydrate and Brighten I purchased this from Sephora as I wanted to find something else from the boscia line that I love as much as their Black Charcoal & Detox line and their blotting papers! This was not inexpensive for a booster product, but I am always looking for skincare products that promise to brighten. Sake Treatment Water, which will be known as STW going forward, is a booster product, which means that it will help prepare your skin for your following skincare products, allowing for better absorption. This is also supposed to hydrate your skin and brighten.
- Sake This is made with the finest grade sake. Sake is made from fermented rice, which is an alcohol, and it is very rich in vitamins ~ such as B1 and B2, amino acids and minerals, has anti-inflammatory properties and is reported to provide hydration and softening benefits. It also has anti-aging properties as it contains ferulic acid, an antioxidant which absorbs UV light. Rice ingredients help stimulate ceramide production, which are also an anti-aging ingredient. Another component of Sake is kojic acid, which is reported to have brighening effects and help reduce hyper-pigmenation
- Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) is a powerful antioxidant that acts as an anti-inflammatory, improves your skin elasticity, enhance the skin barrier function and also it helps to even out skin tone and reduce post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation.
- Sodium Hyaluronate is an intensive moisturizing ingredient which bonds water to keep skin hydrated. It is a natural substance found in the human body and it made up of amino and uronic acids, and helps retain 100 to 1,000 times its own water weight in our skin cells.
- Aloe Vera is a powerful moisturizer that doesn’t leave your skin feeling oily or greasy. It soothes, treats inflammation, helps speed up skin healing and also has a plethora of antioxidants ~ beta-carotene, Vitamin C and Vitamin E, which help improve your skin’s firmness and keeps your skin moist and hydrated. It also contains over 75 different nutritious ingredients, including minerals, enzymes, amino acids, salicylic acid and much more.
- Willow Herb (Epilobium Angustifolium) is an anti-irritant, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial
- Licorce (Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate) is a brightening ingredient as well as reducing flaking and smoothing your skin. It is also an anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory.
STW does not contain parabens, sulfates, phthalates, preservatives, artifical fragrance, gluten, color and ethanol alcohol.
I did a pH level test on STW and it is at a 5. When I did my moisture level tests, on average, I found it increased by 37%, so it does have some hydrating properties.
This doesn’t smell like sake, so don’t worry about that ~ in fact, it is pretty much odorless. Its’ texture is like water, hence its name, and I would pour a bit into the palm of my hand and then quickly pat it into my skin, as the first step after washing my face. It dries very rapidly, due to its watery texture. I did not experience any rashes or skin issues while using this.
Despite its brightening ingredients, I did not notice any brightening effects. Perhaps I need to use it longer, but I read some other reviews and some people had instant results in brightening. This is not a bad product, but there are so many other booster/hydrating first step skincare products out there for less money. I have now switched to another Sake Toner/Booster for testing, Kikumasamune Skincare Lotion (Japan, 500mL), that is way less inexpensive and seems to have good reviews. That one smells like something that Willy Wonka would make if he owned a Sake Factory, btw!! Bubblegum Sake, to be precise.
Ingredients: Water, Pentylene Glycol, PEG/PPG-17/6 Copolymer, Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake), Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium PCA, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Arginine, Niacinamide, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Epilobium Angustifolium Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Extract, Butylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, 1, 2-Hexanediol, Olive Oil PEG-7 Esters, Maltodextrin, Tropolone, Disodium EDTA cosDNA.com analysis
Lancôme Énergie de Vie Daily Aqua-Gel I received this as part of the free 7 piece Asian Beauty Secrets Bag when I purchased the boscia Sake Treatment Water. Lancôme is not an Asian brand, but Asian skincare ingredients are now hot, hot, hot and other brands are picking up on this trend. Lancôme states that their Énergie de Vie line is Asian Beauty inspired. I thought that since this was a huge sample at 50 mL, this would be good enough for an initial impression review ~ and I still have 1/2 of the bottle left after using for 3 weeks!!
This gel is very cool when applied to my skin and initially has the texture of an aloe vera gel ~ it slips and slides around on my skin, melting as it moves. Once I massage it into my skin, it absorbs quickly, turning into a watery fluid, without leaving any tacky or sticky residue on my face. I can tell you I was shocked to see how much my moisture level increased with this light-weight gel ~ 61% on average and I took that reading 5 minutes after the gel dried on my face. WOW…. Amazing.
- Wild Yam (Villosa ) is supposed to have a property similar to progesterone, called diosgenin and it also has estrogen properties. These hormones are very helpful, especially for women who are entering menopause, either peri, pre or post stages. There has been a study that stated that wild yam can help restore the skin barrier in your epidermis, by encouraging the production of keratinocyte cells~ the main cells in our outer layer of skin. It also helps with hyper-pigmentation and can prevent sun spots, based on another study.
- Gentiana Lutea is an herbal ingredient and has antibacterial, anti-acne and anti-irritant properties
This gel is perfect for oily skin types and would be perfect for the summertime ~ very hydrating, soothing, very lightweight, didn’t cause any breakouts, nice cool feeling on skin, and affordable at $50.00 for a huge 200 mL bottle …. but I won’t purchase. Why? The SCENT, damnit. Why oh why did Lancôme put a strong weird fresh perfume-like scent with this product? It does disappear quickly, but it almost brings tears to my eyes when I use it. Lancôme’s has a whole skincare line with Énergie de Vie and yet, I won’t try anyone of them, as the scent is so off-putting. If Lancôme fixes this scent, either to be scentless or not so perfume-strong, I will gladly try more from this line. I really loved the Aqua Gel but for the scent.
Description: “Lancôme’s Énergie de Vie is inspired by Asian beauty rituals, lightweight textures, and balancing energy flow to the skin. The Chinese describe healthy skin as Qi Se: A balanced energy flow (Qi) and an ideal skin color (Se) that is defined by a radiant glow from within. For centuries, Eastern medicine has turned to the root—the most active area of the plant—as a source of vital life energy to balance Qi Se. The Énergie de Vie collection takes inspiration from this ancient philosophy, drawing upon these elements of the plant known to promote Qi Se energy equilibrium.”
Ingredients: Water, Propylene Glycol, Alcohol Denat., Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Peg-20, Peg-8, Bis-Peg-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Phenoxyethanol, Ppg-6-Decyltetradeceth-30, Ethylhexylglycerin, Carbomer, Potassium Hydroxide, Dioscorea Villosa Extract/Wild Yam Root Extract, Hexyldecanol, Gentiana Lutea Extract/Gentiana Lutea Root Extract, Rhodiola Crenulata Root Extract, Fragrance cosDNA.com analysis
Innisfree Mineral Glow Fixer Because I was going really light on my skincare products, I thought I would add a hydrating mineral mist to my routine. This is supposed to be a makeup set spray, but honestly, I don’t know how that can be. Innisfree Mineral Glow Fixer is so moisturizing that I would think that any foundation and makeup you have on would just slide right off your face!! That said, I never intended to use this as a makeup fixer, but as the final step before applying my base makeup. This product is made with the classic Innisfree Green Complex ~ plant extracts such as green tea, citrus unshiu peel, orchid, camellia and prickly pear.
This has a pH level of 5.5 to 6 and on average, this increased by moisture level by 48%. WOW. However… this was just too rich for my skin. I didn’t experience any blemishes or breakouts, but because it was so moisturizing, it didn’t quite absorb fully into my skin and I didn’t like that feeling. I also had to blot my face with oil blotting papers, otherwise my base foundation would have just slid right off.
I feel that this product would work so much better for those who have really dry skin, as this product might be absorbed more completely. For oily skin, I do not recommend this product. Nor do I think this is a makeup fixer ~ no way, no how. My face did feel soft and moisturized but it was sticky and tacky until I blotted the excess away.
Unboxing Beauty Tip: What to do with all of those uber moisturizing spray mists that you cannot use on your face? Use them on your body! I have been using this as a body spray and it works nicely. My skin on my body is much drier than my face and sometimes I don’t have time to wait for a body lotion to dry on my arms and legs before I get dressed. I just put on a soothing gel first, as that absorbs quickly and then spritz this spray on my legs, neck and arms ~ very moisturizing and the product does absorb better there.
Ignore what Memebox has listed as the ingredient list. Sigh. They cannot even post the correct ingredients even when the product has them listed on the box in English.
Ingredients Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Mineral Salts, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Orchid Extract, Camellia Japonica Leaf Extract, Opuntia Coccinellifera Fruit Extract, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Panthenol, Pentylene Glycol, Polyester-5, Disodium EDTA, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance cosDNA.com analysis
Now, this baby was perfect for my face ~ it was a light fermented oil mist, with peppermint and tea tree extracts, by Goodal in the Waterest line. It absorbed quickly, left no tacky or sticky feeling and increased my moisture level by 27%, which is more than adequate for a facial mist.
Alas, this is discontinued and the above photo is an older picture of mine. I was planning to review it and then discovered that I purchased a line that Goodal decided to reformulate ~ and in my humble opinion, the new line ingredients list is not as good. Sigh. TesterKorea still has a few of these left in stock, if you are interested in it.
Ingredients: water, dipropylene glycole, isohexadecane, cyclopentasiloxane, pentylene glycol, ulmus davidiana root extract, amaranthus caudatus seed extract, centella asiatica extract, ficus carica (fig) fruit extact, melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) leaf extract, monascus extract, laurus nobilis leaf extract, mentha piperia (peppermint) extract, citrus aurantium bergamia (Bergamot) fruit oil, Pelargonium Graveloens Flower Oil, Camellia Sinensis Seed Oil, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Argania Spinosa Kernal Oil, Olea Europea (Olive) Fruit Oil,Simmondia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Oil, Pogostemon Cablin Oil, sodium chloride, glycerin, caprylyl/capryl glucoside, ethylhexylglycerin, disodium EDTA, butylene glycol, ceramide 3, phenoxyethanol cosDNA.com analysis
However, I will have a couple of new mists that I will be trying out ~ I purchased A-True Honey Lemon Mist from cupidrop.com and I was sponsored by Rose Rose Shop to try the brand new Benton Honest TT Mist with tea tree and hyaluronic acid ~ so look for those reviews at my blog in the future.
This was an interesting experiment for me. It has been a long while since I just used a few products in my skincare routine and while I may have not been overjoyed in these products, they were not bad ~ just not awe-inspiring. The only one that I thought was a standout product was the Lancôme, but that scent just drives me away from wanting to purchase. Boscia was not a bad product at all, it is just that it is a pricey item ~ if you wanted to purchase something similar that is also scentless and is in the same price range, I would recommend Rice Force Deep Moisture Lotion ~ that is a Japanese brand and lotions are toners there. I did an initial impression on Rice Force here and I did like this a lot more than the boscia product, as I felt that it really helped with my skin tone. Innisfree Mineral Glow would be better suited for dehydrated dry skin than oily skin types like myself.
What do you think? Have you tried any of these products and what did you think of them? And how do I get you to comment? haha Sometimes I feel like I am in a huge auditorium, giving a presentation and no one is there. I know you are out there, reading and I am interested in your thoughts about these products :)
Where to Purchase
boscia Sake Treatment Water to Hydrate and Brighten 50 mL $46.00 at Sephora
Lancôme Énergie de Vie Daily Aqua-Gel 200 mL $50.00 at Sephora
Innisfree Mineral Glow Fixer 120mL
- Memebox $16.00 (wow, what a price increase! I purchased mine from Memebox mid-October for $9.00)
- Yesstyle $20.61
- Korea Depart $12.03
- TesterKorea around $12.00
- Amazon $9.00 to $23.00