J:Dew

Happy summer again! I’ve previously mentioned how I received J:Dew products from q-depot (www.q-depot.com), and they’ve been a great addition to my routine this holiday. Today, I’ll be reviewing two products: the toner, and the serum.

J:DEW Green Moist Toner

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What it is:

  • An amazing Korean skin care product which will cool and moisturizes your skin in almost no time leaving behind smooth texture to your skin without any sticky feelings.
  • It contains pure and organic aloe vera and green tea from the clean soil of Jeju Island, which effectively smooth irritated and troubled skin while proving enough moisture to the deeper layers of your skin. Not only this, it also magically reduces the look of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Best of all, all the products from J:DEW are free from following 6 harmful additives: parabens, mineral oils, animal derivatives, artificial aromas, artificial colorings, and benzophenone making them very friendly to the sensitive skin as well.

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Ingredients:

  • Water, Glycerine, Propanediol , 1,2-Hexanediol, Diglycerine, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Ethanol, Brassica Oleracea Italica (Broccoli Extract), Green Tea Extract, PEG-6+E80 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Arginine, Carbomer, Adenosine, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil , Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Hydrolyzed Glycosaminoglycans

Of the series, I’ve really enjoyed using this toner! It’s refreshing and has a light consistency, which I’d liken to a little runnier than the Hada Labo lotion. On days when my skin feels like it needs nourishing (more so than a light toner mist anyway), I spread this out onto my skin after cleansing and my skin feels supple and moist again.

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This toner is also like aromatherapy to me; it smells like aromatherapic oils and lavender, which really make me feel relaxed at night. The scent is truly soothing, and makes me feel at ease while I prep myself for the rest of my routine. How cute – prepping my face, and my mind!

I will however need to put across that this stuff does not leave your face hydrated for hours on end – it absorbs into my skin fairly quickly (within 15-30m), and that’s when I know that it’s time for me to apply my serum/essence.

J:DEW Green Moist Essence

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What it is:

  • Must-have Korean skin care product, which provides immediate moisture and energy to your skin cells while the effect remains for long hours.
  • Formulated with green tea and aloe vera from the clean soils of Jeju Island. Both of these ingredients are known for the provision of moisture to the skin for ages.
  • The moisture effect goes to the deeper layers of your skin while leaving your irritated skin calm, smooth and moisturized.
  • Also contains Shea Butter, which nourishes and moisturize your skin and turns pigmented and rough skin into rejuvenated and radiant skin.
  • Antioxidants from broccoli extract protect your skin from any further damage and help to bring back your healthy tone and radiant skin.
  • Free from 6 harmful additive: parabens, mineral oils, animal derivatives, artificial aromas, artificial colorings, and benzophenone, thus making it friendly to the sensitive skin as well.

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Ingredients:

  • Water, Glycerine, Propanediol, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Brassica OleraceaItalica (Broccoli Extract), Cyclohexasiloxane, Betaine, Cetearylolivate, Sheabutter, SorbitanOlivate, Sodium Polyacrylate, Glyceryl Caprylate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Green Tea Extract, Sophora Angustifolia Root Extract, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Flower Extract, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Extract, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Junos Fruit Extract, 1, 2-Hexanediol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Hydrolyzed Glycosaminoglycans, Adenosine, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Glyceryl Caprylate, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Butylene Glycol

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This serum has a very smooth formula, fairly similar to the standard serum you’d have. It does feel heavy on my skin (!), but in the way you’d expect a highly nourishing product to be. It smells fairly similar to the toner, and when I massage it into my skin, the dryness/flakiness I’m susceptible to just disappears. Even though I sleep in an air-conditioned room, after applying this serum, I don’t wake up with tight and dry skin!

I say this bearing in mind that my skin type is combination (dry cheeks/forehead/chin, oily t-zone) – and in my humid weather in Singapore, this will only be suitable at night. If I wore this under my makeup in the day, my cushion would probably melt off by noon!

OIL-BLOTTER TEST

So I spread the four products out on a sheet of oil-blotting paper, and let them sit for a while to see how their oil content is.

IMG_5988Immediately after

IMG_600710 minutes later

IMG_6009 2An hour later

So as a preview to the lotion and cream, I’ve dispensed little drops of each product onto an oil blotting paper. While the products do look similar at first glance, they’re clearly formulated very differently – with high oil content in the serum!

These cruelty-free products have genuinely surprised me with how soothing they’ve made me feel. I’ve previously gone for “HG!!! this stuff’s the best” products, but considering how my skin has been flaring up in recent months, I’ve been looking for something with less gimmicks.

Look forward to my reviews of the lotion and cream coming soon then – I’m sure you’ll need products to lock in all that moisture! I’ll also be doing an overall review of the range then 🙂

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Battle of the CC Creams: Banila Co. it Radiant CC Cream and CC Cushion

Those who’ve spoken to me about my beauty stash know that I have a love affair with CC Creams / Colour Correcting Creams. Yes, I said it – I don’t particularly like BB creams, no – I don’t see any magical glowy effects after using them, and they sometimes leave a cakey effect on my skin/dry it out/produce an oily t-zone. But with my not-so-recent discovery of CC Creams, I’ve fallen down the rabbit hole.

After starting off the journey of light-coverage base-makeup, i.e. CC creams, my complexion has been more radiant than ever. There’s this sheer glow I seem to find in the moisturizing properties of CC Creams; I don’t really need the medium-coverage properties of typical BB Creams, so CC Creams are perfect for me because they’re typically sheer coverage, and are marketed to help with sallowness/redness etc. Quick warning: this is not for someone who’s looking to cover multiple blemishes!

I’ll be posting a series of long-overdue reviews of the various CC creams in my stash – while I have made previous judgements on some of them, these will be my honest, latest, long-term-use reviews of these products.


Banila Co. it Radiant CC Cream

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Let’s start off with the very first CC cream I tried – the whitening, moisturizing, color control base produced by Banila Co. What made me get this? I remember catching a glimpse of this CC cream from an unfamiliar brand, Banila Co., on Get It Beauty. As I was shopping around in Bonjour Hong Kong, I caught it at 98HKD as I posted previously. Check out the clip here:

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Song Ji Hyo is the brand ambassador of Banila Co., and this product has won awards from Get It Beauty, Allure Korea, Sure, and Cosmo Korea. Sounds pretty convincing to me!


What I previously posted:

1. This handy pump dispenser provides for more hygienic access to the CC cream

IMG_47722. What the CC cream looks like, unblended

IMG_47763. What the CC cream looks like half blended

IMG_47774. Left side has no CC cream, right side has blended CC cream.
Do note that my hand is slightly tanner than my face!

First impression: ★★★★★ +++ HG LEVEL!!!!!

It’s no wonder that the Banila Co CC Cream came out as one of the top contenders on Get It Beauty – it certainly is moisturizing, provides basic sun protection, and brightens your face. Definitely dedicating a review post to this (and other CC creams) soon!


HOWEVER,
What I can say now is that it’s really got this amazing, smooth and blendable texture that just melts into your face, and I thought it was love at first sight for me. At that point in time, I’d say that my skin was a notch lighter than it is right now – maybe that was why this CC cream seemed to merely brighten my appearance due to its lightness and pink undertones, cancelling out the olive-ness of my skin. I remember yelling at my mum to ‘come look!! I don’t even need undereye concealer with this!!’, but sadly, those days ended mid 2015.

As I got slightly tanner throughout 2015, I started noticing that I looked as pale as a sheet under fluorescent lights whenever I was wearing this CC cream – it simply didn’t suit me anymore, and I started having to mix in darker concealer/base makeup product to make this CC cream work for me. As you can see in the fourth picture above, while the right side of my hand looks brighter, if I was any tanner at all, the shade of the cream just washes me out.

Today, while I still agree that it’s great for brightening my skin tone and as a quick makeup base, I just don’t find myself reaching for it as often. It’s become more of a makeup blender for me.

Pros
– Smells lovely, quite flowery
– Smooth consistency makes it easy to blend
– Feels moisturizing on the skin
– Sufficiently brightening effect

Cons
– May only suit pale skin tones
– May not have sufficient coverage

Overall
– Shade/Tone: Pink undertones, suitable only for those < NC20.
– Consistency: Smooth, blendable
– Application: Easy to apply with fingers
– Coverage: Sheer-light
– Packaging: Pretty good, the standing pump tube is easy to dispense
– Fragrance: Lightly flowery and powdery, not overwhelming

Rating: ★★★★☆
Would I recommend this? Yes!

Details: 30ml, SPF 30 PA++, RRP 25,000KRW / ~SGD$35
Comes in variants including cc+sun, for men, as well as a similarly packaged line of bb creams


Bonus review: Banila Co it Radiant CC Cushion

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Just as an add-on to this review, I purchased the BE10 shade of the CC cushion from Carousell in April last year. With my expectations of the CC cream at that point in time, I had high hopes this product would be equally great – however, I was wholly disappointed with this cushion. What’s there to like about it? Uhhhh, not much here to check out. I’m gonna write about this in the order of how I opened it:

Taking a glance at the cushion case, it looked basic, nothing special nor different from any other cushion – clean-cut and sturdy on the outside. Popping open the case, I immediately noticed that the quality of Banila Co.’s rubycell puff is miles below the golden AmorePacific standard – it’s just like any other sponge to be honest. The worst part is, the rubycell puff literally disintegrated after a few months – yeah, no. That’s just gross.

You know how most cushions have a comfortable ‘click’ lock on their inner-cushion lids? This one had a slipshod click notch on the right-hand side of the lid, which meant that it was SO inconvenient for me to pop open each time – with others, I could easily tip it open with one hand. The liquid in the sponge… I don’t even know what it’s supposed to be. It’s so, freaking, watery, it literally drips out of the case if you store it vertically – which completely negates the point of the inner lid anyway!?

I admit that the shade BE10 is definitely too light for me, but even the way it sits on my face made me feel uncomfortable – it was so sheer, it might as well have not have been on my face – no color correcting or complexion-covering properties in this one. Can you see how the right side of my hand is orangey? The effect was more pronounced in reality – it’s this peachy shade that I simply don’t think suits Asian skin tones.

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Look at everything leaking out. Just a big no from me, sorry Banila Co. While your brand makes some pretty great stuff, you’ve successfully convinced me not to buy any of your cushion products again.

Pros
– Smells lovely, quite flowery – similar to the CC cream
– Glowy effect noticeable on my skin due to pink tones

Cons
– Oily consistency that feels like a film on your face
– Too watery, loose formula
– Shade doesn’t make sense – very orange on my skin, although it’s formulated for yellow undertones
– Terrible rubycell puff that disintegrates
– Poor packaging design, lacks ease of use
– Formula leaks out of the cushion

Overall
– Shade/Tone: ?? undertones, suitable for orange people ~NC20
– Consistency: Oily and watery
– Application: Unusable once the cushion puff disintegrates, which is really soon
– Coverage: None-sheer
– Packaging: Sturdy case, but poor design makes it annoying to use and formula leaks out
– Fragrance: Lightly flowery and powdery, not overwhelming

Rating: ★★☆
Would I recommend this? No!

Details: 15ml*2, SPF 35 PA++, RRP 35,000KRW / ~SGD$40
Comes in 3 shades: BE10, BP15, and BE20


I’ll be reviewing more CC creams, specifically some from AmorePacific soon. Update again… sometime!

 

Review: DHC Eyelash Tonic

Today I’m going to be reviewing DHC’s Eyelash Tonic! I’ve always had short eyelashes throughout my life – they were never curly, long, or voluminous – they were just short and stuck straight out of my eyelids. Eek! I first heard about eyelash serums, like rapidlash and revitalash through r/MUA. One big issue…. they were all around ~$50, not something I’d drop easily for a potential repeat purchase. Come half a year ago, I discovered the DHC Eyelash Tonic on Testerkorea.

From DHC’s official website:

Conditioning DHC Eyelash Tonic nourishing gel treatment strengthens for lush, fuller-looking eyelashes. Fortifying botanicals coat each lash from root to tip to help prevent breakage for a more robust lash line. Wear under mascara during the day and all by itself at bedtime.

  • Specially designed applicator helps distribute gel more evenly
  • Rich in botanicals, including ginseng, aloe and Swertia japonica extract

I first purchased the product for about 14,000KRW (~SGD$19-$20) on Testerkorea, but have since been able to purchase this in Taipei for about SGD$13.50 / ~300NT. I highly suggest against buying this directly from Watsons – this retails for SGD$27.50 in Singapore’s Watsons!

I have two tubes pictured above: 1 has been in use since September 2014 (~6 months of use), and the bottle below is brand new. I’d assume each tube lasts around 1 year, if used once a day – but I would not recommend using an eye product for a year. Mascara rules state that tubes should be thrown out once a month – so you can make your judgement from there. Also, one slight con you might be able to notice – the older bottle has gotten slightly murky from usage over time.

The applicator is extremely easy to use! It’s like any other mascara wand: sweep the tonic over your lashes, covering them in an even coat of tonic. According to DHC,

Use as a mascara base in the morning and as a conditioner in the evening. Gently and evenly, brush a small amount of tonic onto lash roots and sweep outward towards tips.

It’s recommended you use it twice a day, under your daily makeup, and at night to sleep, but I’ve preferred to leave this out under mascara. I like applying a thicker coat of tonic on my lashes, and I feel like the tonic doesn’t fare too well underneath mascara, especially in this humid weather – so I’ve only applied it once a day at night! This comes as the very last step of my routine, after applying eye cream (if at all).

Each bottle contains 6.5ml of product, and is made in Japan. I’ve always liked DHC products – when I was much younger, I loved their acne products (pew pew and my pimples were gone!), and a couple of years ago, I fell in love with their Deep Cleansing Oil. After I started using this for about a month, I discovered this was HG material. Why? Look at my lashes!!!

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THEY HAVE GROWN SO MUCH :’) There’s a noticeable growth in the length of my lashes, such that they’ve even started to hold a natural curl. Not only so, there’s been an increase in the sheer growth of the lashes – there are new baby lashes growing out, and the original lashes have much thicker roots.

I’ve also applied this to my lower lashes, so there has been an increase in amount of my lower lashes – which is absolutely amazing, because previously I’d had like, no. lower. lashes. This stuff is absolutely amazing.

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Here are the ingredients, in case you might be interested:

water/aqua/eau, butylene glycol, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, phenoxyethanol, carbomer, aminomethyl propanol, placental protein, xanthan gum, allantoin, swertia japonica extract, salix alba (willow) bark extract, symphytum officinale leaf extract, nasturtium officinale flower/leaf extract, olea europaea (olive) leaf extract, panax ginseng root extract

The formulation is gentle on my eyes, and doesn’t leave any stinging sensation or whatnot (of course, if you don’t get it into your eyes.) I’ve used this without issue for the past half a year or so, and am extremely satisfied with the results! However, I think it should also be noted that YMMV. I’ve read a couple of articles in HerWorld about how some other lash serums were better, but I’ve already found my HG – so I probably won’t be trying anything else for now.

Effectiveness: ★★★★★ (for now)
Pricing: ★★★★★ (this is really the most affordable out there.)
Packaging: ★★★★☆

Overall: 4half