REVIEW: Klairs Fundamental Watery Oil Drop

It’s been a hot minute since I last reviewed a Klairs product! Since my brand review, they have introduced a few new lines in their collection, one being the Fundamental Line – Skincare Line achieved with premium formulation.

Wishtrend sent me the Klairs Fundamental Watery Oil Drop to try out, and I’m ready to share my thoughts!


Product is a PR sample and provided for review purposes.
Links provided are affiliate links. This means if you click the link and use it to make a purchase, I make a small commission. Thank you if you decide to use them! If you do not feel comfortable, feel free to Google a new link.
All thoughts are my own, always *casts doe patronus*


CLAIMS

The Klairs Fundamental Watery Oil Drop is a water-based serum with the rich hydration of a facial oil. It is recommended to those who want all the benefits of an oil product without the oily finish. It holds a non-sticky texture that absorbs effectively on the skin. Also, consisting high effective formulation such as Green Tea, Ferment Extracts, Ceramide and Peptides, it not only provides antioxidant care but improves skin regeneration and acts as an anti-aging solution.

Price: $31 USD
Amount: 50 ml
How to use: After cleansing and toning, apply 2-3 drops of the Watery Oil Drop on the face and massage from the face down to the neck.

  • Made in Korea
  • Made for all skin types
  • Cruelty-free
  • Vegan
  • Free of ethanol, silicone, steroid (whut?), artificial colouring, artificial fragrance

INGREDIENTS

Aqua(Water), Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Water, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Bifida Ferment Extract, Betaine, Dipropylene Glycol, Sorbitol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Aspergillus/Rice Ferment Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Xanthan Gum, Arginine, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Laminaria Japonica Extract, Ceramide NP, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Copper Tripeptide-1, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8

Total number of Ingredients: 28

From my -passionate skincare consumer- perspective…

I like the ingredient list for what it’s meant to do – a great selection of moisturizing ingredients (mostly humectant rich) paired with antioxidants and skin-soothers to help calm down sensitized skin and maintain skin health:

Moisturizing: Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Sorbitol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Bifida Ferment Extract, Betaine, Aspergillus/Rice Ferment Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Arginine, Ceramide NP, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Copper Tripeptide-1, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8
Antioxidant: Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Copper Tripeptide-1
Soothing/Anti-Inflammatory: Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Copper Tripeptide-1

A couple of things that I noticed is that there are more than a handful of ingredients that help with the texture of the product, and the preservative Ethylhexylglycerin is halfway in the list. Fortunately, the highlighted ingredients below it typically fall around 1%> of a North American formulation, and I also don’t know how South Korea orders their ingredients (I found this blog post by fanserviced-b that compares U.S. and South Korean laws if you’re interested in the read). Overall this doesn’t bother me too much; The beneficial ingredients are more than half of the product, and the solvents/texture-enhancers seem multifunctional with both moisturizing and improving the formulation, but I thought I’d point it out.

Check out INCIDecoder’s (one of my FAVE reference sites) for a more detailed and professional breakdown!


EXPERIENCE

Packaging: Glass bottle with a dropper.

Usage: Usually I prefer to use antioxidant-based products during the day, but I like mixing this with the Ordinary 10% Niacinamide + 1% Zinc serum and applying it after Differin.

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Texture: Surprise surprise, a watery oil! Definitely has more slip compared to the Midnight Blue Youth Activating Drop but not as viscous as the Rich Moist Soothing Serum.

Fragrance: None.

Finish: Very light and there is a film on the skin.

Instant Results: Skin feels smooth, calm and lightly moisturized.

Long-Term Results: Skin rarely feels rough, dehydrated and/or sensitized.


FINAL THOUGHTS

The Klairs Fundamental Watery Oil Drop is overall a great new addition to Klairs’ skincare collection. It embodies the science + nature combo that I enjoy in my skincare products, all the while being gentle and effective for all skin types. I wouldn’t necessarily rely on this for “anti-aging”, but it’s definitely a nice supplemental skincare item to have while using other beneficial (yet sensitizing) anti-aging actives like Vitamin A.

If you’re looking for a light, soothing product that has a bit more oomph to the ingredient list than the classic Hada Labo HA Lotion, check this one out; I actually prefer this serum way more over the Rich Moist Soothing Serum from Klairs as well!

WHERE TO BUY:
Wishtrend
YesStyle

Hope you found this review helpful and informative! I definitely want to get my hands on the Klairs Fundamental Ampule Mist next, the ingredients list

xo, M


RELATED CONTENT:

BRAND REVIEW: Dear, Klairs

TRIED & TRUE TIPS: How I Repaired My Dehydrated and Dry Skin!

Press Samples in this post will be indicated with (PR)
Links marked with a * are affiliate links/codes. This means if you use this link/code to make a purchase, I make a small commission. Thanks for your support if you decide to use them! If you feel uncomfortable, feel free to google a new link.


I thought I’d start off a new blog / video series called “Tried and True Tips” – basically I share tips that like many of us, go Googling for all over the internet for that I have tried, and have worked!

Since it’s now snowing here in jolly Ontario, I thought  it would be the perfect time to share my Tried and True Tips on how I repaired my dry/dehydrated skin! Before I do, quick recap:

  • I was oily-skinned for ~24 years
  • Past 4-5 years, after working in a stupidly dry environment and aging in general, my skin became so dry, it not only felt uncomfortably tight, there was no moisturizer, or oil in general to be found on my skin when I touched my face!

After many a months to a couple of years of trial and error, I finally found what has been working for me in maintaining my skin’s moisture! If what I’ve gone through sounds similar to your current circumstance, then keep on reading!


1. GET A HUMIDIFIER

Picture from Costco.ca

The most common tip, and for good reason! To start improving your skin’s hydration levels, this is an easy way to set it up for success. Like I mentioned, my skin gets easily sensitized in dry environments, so having a large humidifider that lasts hours was much needed for my place.

The one I purchased: Homedics Humidifier
Costco
Amazon.ca

2. PLAN YOUR MORNING CLEANSE ACCORDINGLY

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All these cleansers have a pH around 5-5.5

As demo-ed in my Morning Skincare Routine, I do not wash my face in the morning, and go straight into my Vitamin C serum. Most of the time, my skin doesn’t feel like there’s a heavy layer of product, feels oily, or crusty, so skipping morning cleanse in these instances work for me. It’s particularly beneficial for dry skinned folks because as we know, every time we cleanse our skin, we are promoting Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL); So limiting the amount of times you wash your face in a day helps. However, on the off days where I do feel like my skin has a greasy buildup or feels so crusty my skin texture is uneven, I use a low pH cleanser for 30 seconds in the morning. While cleansing, I already feel my skin becoming softer and smoother than before. Since the cleanser is pH balanced, it doesn’t dry out my skin and I can comfortably follow with my skincare routine; Sometimes my skin actually feels more moisturized! By planning my morning cleanse accordingly, I haven’t had the urge to jump into a chemical exfoliant right away, which overdoing could make your dehydrated skin worse!
Products:
Bioderma Sebium Purifying Cleansing Foaming Gel *
Dr. Sam’s Flawless Cleanser (reviewed)
Cerave Hydrating Cleanser * (PR)
Dermalogica Active Clearing Skin Wash * (Previously Medibac)

3. KEEP YOUR SKIN DAMP

In relation to the previous tip, when washing your face, try not completely drying with a towel. When we completely dry out all the water on our faces, we’re helping speed up the process of TEWL; This leaves our faces tight and uncomfortable, and now we’re using more skincare products than necessary to replenish what we helped lose. My face never feels tight anymore and I don’t feel like I need to use as many replenishing items or layers to feel comfortable again.

4. ADD IN EXTRA HUMECTANTS, EMOLLIENTS, AND/OR OCCLUSIVES

Rule of thumb for finding a moisturizer is that it should contain a good balance with all 3 types of ingredients mentioned above to help retain and prevent water loss from your skin – humectants to attract water, emollients to soften and smooth skin, and occlusives to seal in the deal (See Chemist Confessions post explaining further!). Depending on our individual skin concerns and our preferred products, you can incorporate an extra step into your routine to further help your moisture level.

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Using a hydrating toner, essence, lotion, and/or gel moisturizer is my favourite way of adding in extra moisture! They’re typically humectant rich, some may have emollients as well. I use these all year round, but come winter, I either layer a light one, or swap for a hydrator with a thicker consistency, and one that may leave a film.
Products:
I’m From Rice Toner (PR Sample) *
Laneige Cream Skin Refiner *
Hada Labo Hyaluronic Acid Lotion *
Hada Labo Premium Lotion *
Hada Labo Perfect Gel *

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Plant oils are another easy way of incorporating something more emollient into your routine. Oils I have tried and liked are Marula and Rosehip Seed Oil. Another popular oil is Squalane; I have never tried this one before but I constantly see it appear in people’s skincare routines!
Products:
Pai Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil *
The Ordinary 100% Cold-Pressed Virgin Marula Oil *
Not shown cause I forgot: Jordan Samuel Soothing Facial Oil

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If my skin is in dire need, I will go in with the big guns and either mix or add a pea-sized amount of the best, cheap occlusive of its kind – petrolatum! Applying Vaseline or Cerave’s Baby Healing Ointment were some serious game changers in providing my dry skin with relief, especially when I started using 0.3% Adapalene around this time of year!
Products:
Cerave Baby Healing Ointment *
Vaseline *


And there you have it, the tried and true tips that have helped me fix my dehydration / dryness!

I know this isn’t a super long list, but I wanted to share the very effective ones that worked so well for me! Hope you found this post helpful and informative.

xo,

M

BRAND REVIEW: Krave Beauty

I know – I’m Canadian, and I have all 3 Krave Beauty products. I was actually super fortunate to win an Instagram contest Krave Beauty was hosting back in September 2018 – suggest a new title for their skincare book!

krave-beauty-packaging

I gave my honest input about it, and before I knew it, it was the most popular one in their comment section and I’m being tagged in their story! The prize was full sizes of all 3 following products: Matcha-Hemp Hydrating Cleanser, Kale-aha-uya, Beet the Sun SPF 47+ PA++++, shipped from their Seoul facility.

michxmash-kb-winner

When their skincare book comes out, just remember, *this girl named it*

I’ve been rotating these Krave Beauty products in my current skincare routine for a few months now and I am ready to share my thoughts with you all and whether or not Canadians and anyone else outside the U.S. and South Korea should continue their fascination with Krave Beauty. Please note the standard information on the products I share is based on Krave Beauty’s official U.S. website, even though I got the products from Korea.

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If it isn’t clear: I won these products in an instagram giveaway. They were not sent to me for review purposes. I’m reviewing it because I want to.

All thoughts are my own, always. *casts doe patronus*


ABOUT KRAVE BEAUTY

Founded by Liah Yoo (formerly known as YellowyCream), Beauty Youtuber. I’m not sure of her educational background, but she has been working in the beauty world for a handful of years now and has been an avid product junkie since before I started watching her. As a subscriber, I always noticed her thoughtfulness towards acne-prone, sensitive skin like hers when reviewing products. I’m glad that in the past couple of years she switched gears and started getting more educational; She has a research team that debunks skincare myths, talks about efficacious, science-based ingredients, but maintains an open mind about new ingredients coming into the skincare game. Although she is classed as a Beauty Expert, I find her to be a non-BS one. Even if I didn’t win her products, I have had a high interest in Krave Beauty since she launched it and wanted to purchase it for myself. Krave Beauty combines the benefits of plants and science-backed ingredients, all the while making sure it can accomodate the most sensitive of skin types. This sounds like my cup of tea!

Krave Beauty itself is all about pressing reset on your skin. Stop with the 10 step skincare, and just listen and feel for what your skin craves (Krave… get it?). Her line started off with the 3 products I’m about to review, and she has since followed up with another product launch, with most-likely more to come!

QUICK FACTS:

  • Sell only skincare
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Cruelty-free
  • Formulated without fragrance, essential oil, colorant
  • Wants to be a transparent company
  • Wants to #PressReset on your skincare routine and all the noise from the beauty industry
  • Create products that considers your skin’s health
  • Prioritize simplicity in their products while providing quality ingredients and care

A very suitable excerpt from their site:

“Skincare should be easy,
Skincare should be a stress-free zone,
Skincare should be a supplement to our lifestyle.
And most of all, skincare basics should be, basic.

It’s time to #pressreset.”

I also like how Krave Beauty just launches products at its own pace. These past couple of years the makeup market became extremely saturated (how many eyeshadow palettes do we need people!?), and now you see skincare getting lots of hype and making its rounds, especially on Instagram!


Matcha Hemp Hydrating Cleanser

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ABOUT

PRICE: $16 USD
AMOUNT: 120ml / 4.05 fl oz
pH: 5.0 – 6.0
CLAIMS:
– An antioxidant cleanser that doesn’t mess up your skin barrier
– Lifting everything your skin doesn’t want while leaving what it needs—healthy pH, hydration, antioxidants and no irritation
– Matcha and hemp seeds are here to boost the skin’s intake of antioxidants and essential fatty acids
– Contains 40% matcha

INGREDIENTS

HIGHLIGHTED INGREDIENTS:

Matcha

One of the most antioxidant-dense sources on the planet. Basically, we thought it’d be awesome to splash matcha every day on our skin.

Hemp seed oil

HIGH in essential amino acids, HIGH in linoleic acid, oh yeah, it’s so HIGH-drating! Great for all skin types, even for oily skin peeps. Hemp seed oil has a natural antibacterial property that helps to relieve inflamed skin conditions.

Coco -betaine, Coco-glucoside, Decyl glucoside

A group of mild and gentle cleaning agents. These surfactants are less likely to compromise your skin barrier whereas harsh surfactants (like SLS) can strip away everything including your natural lipids. And these, you don’t want to surrender.

Vitamin B5 & Sodium PCA

Skin-barrier strengthening ingredients replenishing hydration.

Krave Beauty U.S. website

FULL INGREDIENTS LIST:
Camellia Sinensis Leaf Water, Water, Glycerin, Coco-Betaine, Methyl Gluceth-10, Ethoxydiglycol, Dipropylene Glycol, Methylpropanediol, Sodium Chloride, Butoxydiglycol, Diglycerin, Glycereth-26, Xanthan Gum, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Powder, Quillaja Saponaria Bark Extract, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Cannabis Sativa (Hemp) Seed Oil, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Diethoxydiglycol, Coco-Glucoside, Caprylyl Glycol, Glyceryl Caprylate, Decyl Glucoside, Pentylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Butylene Glycol, Octanediol, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Citric Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium PCA, Disodium EDTA

COSDNA

Love that it has 40% Camellia Sinsesis Leaf Water in the formulation; For me, it makes it a standout cleanser and it’s unlike other ones I’ve tried. I’ve washed my face with green tea water before (literally steeped warm water for like, 5 mins and splashed my face for over a minute) and I find I achieve similar results of skin softness and evenness, only the Matcha-Hemp Hydrating Cleanser can actually perform as a great 2nd cleanse. Not sure why they didn’t highlight Oat Kernel Extract and Quillaja Saponaria Bark Extract, I personally think they’re worth mentioning about this cleanser!

EXPERIENCE

USAGE: Evening as 2nd cleanse.

SCENT: None!

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TEXTURE: One of the more interesting textures I have tried from a cleanser – A brown, chunky gel.

APPLICATION: From a pea to more than a nickel-size amount and lather on the face and neck.

FINISH: I keep my face slightly damp before going into my humectant products. However this cleanser does speed up water evaporation, and there were times when my face felt unpleasantly squeaky-clean.

INSTANT RESULTS: Face feels soft and hydrated after 1 minute of cleansing.

LONG-TERM RESULTS: Overall skin hasn’t been compromised despite the quick drying feeling it brings. No breakouts, my reliable 2nd cleanse for removing even the heaviest of layers of makeup, face always looks even tone and bright.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON  THE MATCHA-HEMP HYDRATING CLEANSER

PROS:
– Base is 40% Camellia Sinesis Leaf Water
– Good size
– Fairly affordable considering the amount and how much you need to actually use

CONS:
– Dries my skin too fast, even when it’s damp


KALE-LALU-yAHA

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PRICE: $25 USD
AMOUNT: 200ml / 6.76 fl oz
TYPE OF EXFOLIANT: AHA – Glycolic Acid 5.25%
pH: 3.0 – 4.0
CLAIMS:
– Skin resurfacing exfoliator that kicks your dead skin cells to the curb
– Revealing youthful, healthier skin while also feeding it delicious antioxidants from dark, leafy greens
– Kiss good-bye to the appearance of discoloration, sun damage, and fine lines with regular use

INGREDIENTS

HIGHLIGHTED INGREDIENTS:

Glycolic Acid (Sugar cane derived) 5.25%

A real game changer in your skincare routine! Glycolic acid is an effective chemical exfoliant that gently resurfaces skin texture and prevents clogged pores. With regular use, this nudges your skin’s cellular turnover slowly, fading the appearance of hyperpigmentation, sun damage, and fine lines.

Dark, leafy greens (kale, spinach, parsley)

A vital energy booster for the skin, the antioxidants packed in these greens are the best thing you can treat your skin with—and that’s why we call it Kale-lalu-yaha! Not just that, it’s also chock-full of vitamins and minerals too. What more could you ask for?

Aloe + Hyaluronic acid + Vitamin B5

These are all natural hydrators which replenish, hydrate and soothe skin. Once you apply, you’ll feel instant hydration, especially if you pair this with a moisturizer that locks down it all down.

Allantoin

Allantoin soothes skin while buffering any possible irritation from the chemical exfoliation process. This is an absolutely wonderful ingredient which brings both moisturizing and soothing relief to a sensitive, inflamed skin.

Krave Beauty U.S. website

FULL INGREDIENTS LIST:
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Water
, Water, Butylene glycol, Brassica Oleracea Acephala Leaf (Kale) Extract, Glycolic acid, 1,2-Hexanediol, Potassium Hydroxide, Glycerin, Spinacia Oleracea (Spinach) Leaf Extract, Carum Petroselinum (Parsley) Extract, Chlorella Minutissima Extract, Malus Domestica Fruit (Green apple) Extract, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Betaine Salicylate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Allantoin, Pseudozyma Epicola/Camellia Sinensis Seed Oil/Glucose/Yeast Extract Ferment Filtrate, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Bacillus/Folic acid/Soybean ferment extract, Coptis Japonica Root Extract, Malachite Extract, Polysorbate80, Disodium EDTA

COSDNA

I know you can only highlight so many good ingredients, but I’d like to point out this AHA  toner also has Chlorella and Green Apple extract as greens in this product. There’s also Glycerin, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), and Sodium Hyaluronate for moisturizing properties!

EXPERIENCE

USAGE: Evening. Started using it every other day. When I incorporated prescription-strength Differin, only 1-2x a week max.

SCENT: While first using it I didn’t smell anything. Now that I’ve opened it a handful of times, there’s a slight sour smell when you open the cap, but not on application.

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TEXTURE: Watery.

APPLICATION: Sometimes I use my hands to apply a couple of swigs. If I feel particularly congestted, I apply it to a Klairs cotton pad (compressed or sponge).

FINISH: Slightly moisturized.

INSTANT RESULTS: Skin looks smooth and even.

LONG-TERM RESULTS: No surprise that the moment I incorporated this into my nightly routine, my texture improved. I find Glycolic Acid is the most effective when tackling these haunting atrophic scars.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON KALE-LALU-yAHA

PROS:
– Base is Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Water and not plain old water
– Improved my skin’s texture
– Not too irritating for my skin – I have used 8-10% AHA in the past, but now that I use a retinoid I’m happy for a lesser percentage.
– Non-drying – skin feels normal and sightly moisturized after use

CONS:
– Crystallizes at the dispense area

IN-BETWEEN FEELS:
The amount 5.25%; I’m an experienced chemical exfoliator user, so I could do with a higher percentage. On the other end, this is a fairly high amount if you consider it in the K-Beauty Market. Most of the chemical exfoliators in that market don’t go past 2%.


Beet the Sun SPF 47+ PA++++

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U.S. NAME: The Beet Shield
PRICE:
 $20 USD
AMOUNT: 50ml / 1.7oz
UV FILTERS:
– Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate (Uvinul A Plus)
– BisEthylhexyloxyphenol Methoxyphenyl Triazine (Tinosorb S)
– Polysilicone-15 (Parsol SLX)
CLAIMS:
– A gentle, antioxidant-rich day fluid that protects your skin from harsh environmental stressors
-A lightweight, non-white cast leaving formula
– Charged with beet root extract and antioxidants to fight against the free radicals so you don’t turn beet-red

INGREDIENTS

HIGHLIGHTED INGREDIENTS:

Beetroot extract

An underrated yet amazingly antioxidant-rich vegetable, the beetroot holds skin enhancing properties like preventing signs of aging, reducing pigmentation and blemishes and moisturization! A true underdog superfood.

Allantoin

Allantoin soothes skin and relieves skin irritation. This is an absolutely wonderful ingredient which brings both moisturizing and soothing relief to a sensitive, inflamed skin.

Vitamin C, Resveratrol, EGCG

This powerful tag team of antioxidants is proven to shield skin against external stressors and neutralize free radicals.

Krave Beauty U.S. website

FULL INGREDIENTS LIST:
Water, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Dibutyl Adipate, Beta Vulgaris (Beet) Root Extract, Alcohol, Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Bis-Ethylhexyloxyphenol Methoxyphenyl Triazine, Ethylhexyl Triazone, Glycerin,  Pentylene Glycol, Isoamyl p-Methoxycinnamate, Polysilicone-15, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Tromethamine, Methylpropanediol, Isohexadecane, Caprylyl Glycol, Glyceryl Caprylate, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, 1,2-Hexanediol, Polysorbate 80, Lithospermum Erythrorhizon Root Extract, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Sorbitan Oleate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Allantoin, Epigallocatechin Gallate, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Butylene Glycol, Resveratrol

COSDNA

EXPERIENCE

USAGE: AM routine as the last step of skincare of course!

SCENT: None!

 

TEXTURE: Krave Beauty describes it perfectly – condensed milk! It also doesn’t feel sticky or greasy.

APPLICATION: I apply ~64% 1/4 tsp (I did a rough measurement of my face and I calculated this to be the amount needed to get the SPF and PA protection on my face).

 

FINISH: Shiny and moisturized. The shine eventually fades. No cast.

INSTANT RESULTS: Skin looks smooth and even, feels more moisturized.

LONG-TERM RESULTS: Provides good sun protection. Face feels slightly dry after I use this with foundation. Foundation-free days I do not get this.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON BEET THE SUN SPF 47+ PA++++

PROS:
– The base may be just water, but I love the texture! *Cosmetic Elegance*
– Uses modern, photostable filters
– Despite Alcohol in the top 5 ingredients, it doesn’t dry my skin too much

CONS:
– Some days it stings my face (depending what I used the night before)
– I know this ingredient factors in formulation, but in my personal experience, using a product with Alcohol constantly (even in makeup) weakens my skin. I’m willing to purchase this SPF again, but I am wearing about what my skin would look like with consistent use. This is in a sunscreen rather than moisturizer foundation, so I hope this different formulation will not do the same thing

IN-BETWEEN FEELS:
– The amount 50ml is perfect as a travel-size SPF companion, but you’ll run out of this quickly if it’s your go to sun protection product. I wish they offered a larger size


FINAL THOUGHTS

krave-beauty-products

OVERALL PROS:
– Thoughtful formulations: first set of ingredients are actually key ingredients, and if you look at the ingredients list as a whole, there’s a lot of good stuff in it that look as if it makes up the bulk of the formulation.
– Affordable. Considering the quality of these products, I find the pricepoint very good, and you get a considerable amount for most of the products.
– Liah herself actually uses her products consistently. Sure it’s self promotion, but she DID want the formulas to work with her skin type as well. She’s also the public tester for her brand and we can see her skin’s progress.

OVERALL CONS:
– Not. Available. In. Canada. I wish they made it available in Toronto at least! Their U.S. facility is in New Jersey and we’re but a mere 6 hour drive away :3 We also sell SPF with Tinosorb in it so I’m sure it can get approved to be sold as an SPF here.

OVERALL IN-BETWEEN FEELS:
– Suited for MOST skin-types. Like I mentioned, the SPF was mositurizing at first but throughout the day my face dried if I wore foundation with it, and the cleanser leaves my skin feeling very dry if I don’t act fast with my humectants.
– You can make it work and you don’t have to alter your routine significantly when using these products.

I will make this clear: If I COULD purchase, I WOULD. I even want to try their new release, Great Barrier Relief! But alas, Canadians are always jipped, jipped I say!! I hope the Krave Beauty team offers international shipping soon, I know a lot of fellow skincare lovers want to try what they have to offer. Aside from that, if you are able to purchase Krave Beauty, I hope this review helped in solidifying your decision!

WHERE TO BUY:
U.S.: kravebeauty.com
SK: kravebeauty.co.kr

xo, M

REVIEW: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Masks

Glow Recipe is another online K-Beauty retailer, but they curate more indie brands that are not as known or easily accessible to those of us in the Western World! Think Make P:rem, Blithe, Huxley, Whamisa… Working in the Korean and American beauty market for so long, and having their own business, the founders Sarah and Christine curated their own line, Glow Recipe!

I first purchased the original Blueberry Bounce Gentle Cleanser and Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask, and eventually wanted to try their Jelly Sheet Mask! Since the Cleanser has been reformulated, I won’t be reviewing it * missed my chance *. If you would like to see a review on it despite it being the older formula, let me know in the comments! We’ll be focusing on the 2 Watermelon Masks I purchased from their line:
Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask
Watermelon Glow Jelly Sheet Mask

Why watermelon? I actually find it a very cute and sentimental reason. In the summertime during their childhood, their grandmothers would rub the rhine and flesh of fresh watermelon on their backs to soothe irritated, inflamed skin.  My grandmother never did anything like that, but she’d always prepare a copious amount of snacks for me and my cousins!

Quick Facts:
– Cruelty Free
– Formulated without synthetic dyes and mineral oils
– Good for all skin types
– Made in Korea


Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask

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Price: $59 CAD, Mini $29 CAD
Amount: 2.7oz/80ml, Mini 1oz/30ml

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Description: “The Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask is a luxuriously bouncy, breathable sleeping mask that smoothes and perfects skin, overnight. This pillow-proof formula acts as a radiance-boosting hybrid hydrator, formulated with soothing, amino-acid rich Watermelon Extract, hydrating Hyaluronic Acid, and pore refining AHAs that work while you sleep to gently exfoliate and clarify.” – Glow Recipe Website

Key Ingredients: Watermelon, Hyaluronic Acid, AHA

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Water, Sodium Hyaluronate, Glycerin, Caulerpa Lentillifera (Seaweed) Extract, Simethicone, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit, Silica, Propanediol, Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin) Fruit Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Fruit Extract, Musa Sapientum (Banana) Fruit Extract , Paeonia Suffruticosa (Peony) Root Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Brassica Oleracea Capitata (Cabbage) Leaf Extract, Ipomoea Batatas (Sweet Potato) Root Extract, Betaine, Beta Glucan, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Xanthan Gum, Alcohol, Fragrance

Usage: Bath time, 1-2 times every 2 weeks.

Texture: Slimey. You have to mix before applying because there is separation.

Fragrance: Artificial watermelon, like a candy or a popsicle.

Application: I use the spoon to apply dollops on my forehead, cheeks and neck. I had to be fast, the texture is slimey and slippy!

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Face with Sleeping Mask

Instant Results: Skin felt soft and smooth.

Long-Term Results: Don’t use it enough to know. I rely on higher strength chemical exfoliators for this purpose.

Where to purchase:
Sephora
Glow Recipe


Watermelon Glow Jelly Sheet Mask

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Price: $11 CAD
Amount: 1.17oz/33g

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Description: “This one-of-a-kind sheet mask gets its jelly texture from a blend of watermelon extract and natto gum. That’s right, it’s a sheet mask made out of watermelons that gives you all the benefits of the amino-acid rich fruit directly into the skin. The watermelon base gives the jelly a naturally translucent pink hue that’s almost invisible on the skin, meaning you can mask anywhere, anytime without anyone knowing what you’re up to. It’ll be our little secret.” – Glow Recipe Website

Key Ingredients: Watermelon, Hyaluronic Acid, Centella Asiatica

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Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit, Soy Amino Acids, Fructooligosaccharides, Centella Asiatica Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols, Hyaluronic Acid, Natto Gum, Ceratonia Siliqua (Carob) Gum, Glycerin, Cyamopsis Tetragonoloba (Guar) Gum, Xanthan Gum, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Paeonia Suffruticosa (Peony) Root Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Beta-Glucan, (-)-Alpha-Bisabolol, Brassica Oleracea Capitata (Cabbage) Leaf Extract, Ipomoea Batatas (Sweet Potato) Root Extract, Fragrance.

USAGE: 10 minute one night stand.

Texture: Thin, jelly gel mask.

Fragrance: Artificial watermelon, like a candy or a popsicle.

Application: 2 pieces, apply top and bottom.

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Face with Jelly Mask

Instant-Results: Somehwat hydrating.

Where to purchase:
Sephora
Glow Recipe


Final Thoughts

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PROS:
One of the few Korean-inspired products with a decent-sized ingredient list. When Korean brands use plant extracts, the list is so insanely long and features a lot of exotic ingredients that I don’t even bother to check all of them. Glow Recipe’s list is actually readable.
Key ingredients are actually near the top of the list. Too many times I have seen Niacinamide, collagen, HA, and all the good stuff at the bottom of a 50+ long ingredient list. I never thought it would do anything significant for my skin. Watermelon is noticeably high on the GR INCI lists.
Texture – the Sleeping Mask has an interesting and fun texture, which adds to my enjoyment using the product.

CONS:
– Price – $59 For a sleeping mask that dries way too quickly for my skin, PLUS I have to use extra layers to feel a decent amount of hydration… Not worth it.
– Artificial fragrance – I don’t mind fragrance if it is somewhat natural smelling. The watermelon definitely smells like fake candy. It’s not overwhelming, but it takes away from a more enjoyable experience with the mask.
– This isn’t an attack solely on the Watermelon Glow Jelly Mask, but after trying multiple gel masks this one just continues to prove to me that gel masks are MEH. Not worth $11 When a $2 cotton-sheet has shown to be just as efficacious, if not more.
Jelly Mask in general is flimsy and I managed to puncture it a few times when trying to get it to adhere to my face.

IN-BETWEEN FEELS:
More suited for oily skin. I wouldn’t say these products can be for all skin types, I don’t feel like my skin is nourished enough, even when I applied extra layers. Having said that, they still somewhat performed, and someone with an oilier skin type may see better results.
Mild enough for sensitive skin or for those who have never used chemical exfoliants. I’m used to stronger chemical exfoliants, but I did notice my skin would look fairly smoother with the mask. I just feel like I have tried better, but for someone starting out, you may want to look into the Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask.

I appreciate Glow Recipe, admire the founders, and generally like the products. I’m sort of interested in trying the Avocado Mask, but I don’t really have an urge to try anything further from the brand. Have you tried the Avocado Mask? Let me know in the comments below!

xo, M

BEST OF BEAUTY 2018: Skincare

I feel like with every passing year, I always learn a different aspect of skincare. I found this year I focused a LOT on scientifically proven ingredients, as well as new, popular ingredients that are commonly talked about in the beautysphere. This was also the year I showed more interest in drugstore products! Out of everything I tried and used up this year, here are the skincare products that really stood out to me this year and deserve some praises.

Before we get into the individual products, I want to give a shout out to a few brands that have impressed me with almost every product I’ve tried from the line. If I didn’t, I feel like the list would be a lot longer! I also have product shoutouts along the list as well. They may not be my top pick for the year of 2018, but again, they deserve a mention since I did enjoy using them.


BRAND Shoutouts

DRUGSTORE: Cerave – If you need affordable, effective skincare with a simple ingredients list, this is the brand to turn to. Almost any skin type can turn to this brand! I’m looking forward to trying more from the brand and provide you all affordable alternatives in skincare.

MID-RANGE: Krave Beauty – I actually would have featured everything in this post, but since I only started using them near the end of the year a handful of times, I’ll leave the praises for a future post *hint hint*. A new skincare line created by acne-prone, sensitive-skinned beauty Youtuber Liah Yoo. The brand is all about respecting the skin’s natural function and makes sure to promote its helf rather than further sensitizing it.

HIGH-END: Dermalogica – She may be pricey, but she works, and a little goes a long way with every product I have tried! I love the combo of science-backed ingredients mixed with botanicals and essential oils in their formulas. This is one of the few skincare brands I’m willing to splurge money on because I’ve reaped nothing but benefits!


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Makeup Remover

Marcelle Eye Makeup Remover for Sensitive Eyes – Favourited by a handful of Canadian Beauty Bloggers, and I can see why. It is simple, it is gentle, it works really well at removing waterproof makeup, all the while never irritating my eyes or drying out my eye area!

Cleanser

Cerave Hydrating Cleanser – Jesus where was this when I had worse skin problems? Cerave has impressed me this year as a drugstore brand and this is one of their standout products to me. Preferably used for my morning cleanse, I find it softens my skin when massaging for a minute or so and does a decent job at removing overnight fluffs. If you need a very gentle cleanser, I don’t think you’d be disappointed with this one!

Shoutout:
Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel * – She’s expensive, but she also has a lovely texture, amazing second cleanse, and a little goes such a long way it took me forever to finish it!

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Hydrator

COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence – I seriously miss this from my routine! I’m currently using Secret Key FTE which is nice, but COSRX is pretty much the same but with my preferred consistency! It wasn’t until I started using this that the plateau I was experiencing in my skincare ended. Face felt more hydrated, looked even tone, and I actually started noticing improvements in my hyperpigmentation.

Shoutouts:
Klairs Supple Preparation Unscented Toner *
Some By Mi AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner *

I already threw out the COSRX Essence so I couldn’t take a new solo photo :3)

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Moisturizer

Hada Labo Koi-Gokujyun Perfect Gel – I pine for this. Has the different HA molecules, Urea, Ceramide, and Squalane! A seriously lovely humectant moisturizer that I’m highly considering repurchasing.

Cerave PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion – Surprise surprise! But seriously, I really am surprised that I liked a drugstore moisturizer so much. It worked with my dry skin and I see the workings of the 4% Niacinamide.

Klairs Vitamin E Mask * – Love it as my night time moisturizer in the colder months, and it’s also just a joy to use because of the texture and the instant brightening effects. The bonus is that it is a heavier mask that doesn’t aggravate my acne or enlarge my pores!

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Actives / Treatments

Dermalogica Biolumin-C Serum * – I cringe that this is a favourite because of the price point, but it’s SO GOOD! It does everything you could want in a vitamin C serum – hydrate, brighten, create an even tone, lighten pigmentation. I felt like it just simplified my morning routine when I used it.

Differin OTC 0.1% Adapalene – My gateway drug into retinoids (lol). After years of experimenting with skincare outside of prescription, and learning so much this year about its benefits, I decided to go back to Vitamin A. It was definitely a turn for the better, because I’ve only noticed my skin improving since incorporating it into my routine. I now use prescription Differin with a higher percentage, but Americans are very lucky to have easy access to this in your local drugstores!

Benzagel 5 Acne Wash – Simplest, gentlest BP product I have ever tried. It was very affordable, I was surprisesd at how long it lasted, and yes, I found it very effective at killing any spots within a few days. I never thought I’d like a BP product as much as this!

Exfoliator

Dr. G Brightening Peeling Gel – Gentle and easy to use, and I like that I can use it on wet skin!

Secret Key Lemon Sparkling Peeling Gel * – Must be used on dry skin, but love how my skin is noticeably softer after using this. This one is particularly good for not just it’s quality but the low cost!

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid – Out of all the products I’m mentioning, this one is probably the gentlest. I always anticipate a stinging sensation when using this, but it’s always soothing and moisturizing! Like I’ve said before, it’s like an acid essence. My skin always looks bright and even, and pores look smaller.

Krave Beauty Kale-lalu-yAHA * – This year’s AHA favourite. Love that it’s gentle, especially now that I am using a retinoid, and still effective as an exfoliant for my skin. I especially like how both this and the PC product can be used under my eyes!

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Sunscreen

Elta Md UV Facial Broad-Spectrum SPF 30+ Moisturizing Facial Sunscreen – We hear time and time again from skin professionals, experts and enthusiasts how important sunscreen application is, and this is the one I used that really made me enjoy applying sunscreen. I also consider this a gateway drug into trying out many other sunscreens!

Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF50+ PA++++ * – How can I not include this? Seriously one of the best Klairs releases. Chemical sunscreen with photostable UV filters, doesn’t sting my eyes, is slightly moisturizing, doesn’t have a cast, and comes in a great size for a great price.


And there you have it! I’m impressed that I managed to keep the list * rather * short this time around. Hope you enjoyed this post and be sure to check out the related content below!

xo, M


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BEST OF BEAUTY 2018: Makeup
BEST OF BEAUTY 2017: SKINCARE
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My Morning (AM) Skincare Routine 2018
My Nighttime (PM) Skincare Routine 2018
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SUNSCREEN SUNDAY #1: Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++
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