Monday, 15 December 2014

A/W 2014: Morning Skincare Routine (Mini Reviews)

You'll probably be surprised to see that my skincare routine doesn't comprise mostly of Korean products! This is mostly because I decided to swap stuff around for university, and plus most of my newly bought Korean products just arrived back home from Korea.
My night routine will feature more Korean products, so stay tuned for that!

Products will be listed in order of application.

Cleanser: SANA Nameraka Honpo Soy Milk Cleansing Foam

Love this cleanser! It leaves my skin clean, smooth, and moisturised.

It most definitely improved the texture of my skin after a week or two of use.
Before I came back from Korea in August I had ditched my Etude House AC Clinc Acne cleanser since it wasn't giving me any game changing results - my acne was so bad in Korea because of all the alcohol. So when I got home the first cleanser I used was this one since I recalled it being a previous favourite. My acne calmed down and my skin texture improved noticably after a weeks use, even though I was using Missha's Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence at the time.

I've actually opened this tube since my 2nd year of university back in September 2012! Reason why it's still going strong is because I used it in alternation with my Hadalabo Tamagohada cleanser, and I only used it during term time. Right now I have around half a tube left, and hoping it lasts me till the end of my final year at university.

Toner: Lush Tea Tree Water

Refreshing toner that I often apply as a spray of mist as opposed to on cotton pad. The latter method seems to be less effective since my cotton pad absorbs the product so much that not much of it has a chance to even reach my skin!
Have yet to experienced any major break outs since use. Pore tightening doesn't appear too apparent though, unfortunately. Regardless, I thoroughly enjoy using this in the mornings the most!

Korea's toners disappointed me. Most were targetted  towards dry skin, and the ones for acne either contained alcohol denat in them or didn't have amazing reviews. Though, I did like Etude House's Wonder Pore Toner. I stupidly decided to bring back the bottle with a tiny bit of product left, meaning I had to go find a good UK toner, and hence why I ended up with this one! It had great reviews online, I really wanted to try something natural, and the price for the smaller bottle was decent!
Since then I ended up getting the bigger bottle in Leeds because I liked it that much.

Essence: SANA Nameraka Honpo Isoflavone Moisturizing Lotion Toner

I'd like to introduce you guys to my new holy grail!
It moisturises, greatly improves skin texture, and does a fantastic job at plumping the skin!
My skin's been feeling so lovely and bouncy after using this for over a month! The results became apparent after 1 or 2 weeks use, paired with healthier eating (my vegetable game has been going strong this semester).

Before, I used Missha's Time Revolution The First Essence, which did an okay job. However, it couldn't beat the amazing results I got from this lotion toner! Perhaps this is also why Innisfree's Soybean Energy Essence got amazing reviews too. Soy > Yeast!
Despite being labeled as a toner, I feel that this product is more like an essence due to it's high soy concentration.

One downside to this product is that it probably contains alcohol since I can smell it when I pat it on my face.

Eye gel: The Face Shop Chia Seed Watery Eye & Spot Essence

Great eye product for us milia sufferers.
Lightweight, watery, and appropriately moisturising.

Since using this product I haven't gained more milia seeds, and the existing milia looks less noticable than before - though still noticable. This is largely because the product isn't greasy but thin, so it can absorb into the skin more easily.
Can't say this is my holy grail because I'm still bound in futile hope that maybe one day I can find a product that can get rid of my milia completely. But I can say this is a favourite, and I will consider repurchasing if I can't find another water/gel based eye product to try out.

Moisturiser (no makeup day): Neutrogena Visibly Clear Oil-free Moisturiser

Not great, but not awful.
Unfortunately a thick cream that requires more product than usual (for me) in order to spread evenly, but it does leave the skin feeling partially matte for the first couple of hours. Additionally upon application it feels kind of minty.

I desperately needed a new non-make up day moisturiser since I was running low on The Body Shop's Tea Tree Skin Clearing Lotion, which was too expensive for me to repurchse without a Body Shop member card.
So I contemplated on repurchasing the Clean & Clear Dual Action Oil-Free Moisturiser, a trustworthy product for combo/oily skin. But Boots was doing a 3 for 2 promotion, and I already had 2 other products priced around £6 on my wish list, and getting a £3 moisturiser didn't seem worth it. This product was priced around £6 and on my want-to-try list, so I gave it a shot.

Can't say I regret the purchase. But I'll go back to Clean & Clear's moisturiser once I finish this, purely because it's easier to apply.

Moisturiser (make up day): Olay Essentials Complete Care Normal/Oily Day Fluid

I guess you can call this my holy grail since I always use this as a moisturiser-base to my make up, and it's my 2nd bottle.
It's appropriately moisturising, spreads nicely, and provides a good even base for my make up. Doesn't magnetise the make up to your face though, unfortunately. But otherwise, I really have no other complaints about this product.

Before, I didn't like it because it felt thick and I thought it broke me out - this was years ago before I used cleansing oils. But then I decided to give it another go one day (can't remember when), and ended up loving it.
I believe the break out problem stemmed from the SPF in the product, and without a cleansing oil, my face wasn't cleaned properly (apparently SPF requires extra care in removing).

Acne Treatment: Quinoderm 10% Cream

Whenever a new bright red pimple pops out of nowhere, I must slather a layer of this product on top in order for it to work and dry the bugger out. If it's a new baby pimple, a thin layer will suffice.
With such methods, it works, but the downsides are that under make up it looks dry and patchy, and it can turn that area of skin dry and flaky for a few days.

This is an over the counter product at the Boots pharmacist.
My first tube ran out whilst in Korea, it lasted for a good year or two. The Etude House AC Clinic Intense Pink Powder Spot did squat, so I asked my friends to mail me a new tube. I did seek for a second tube before going to Korea, but at the time the product was unavailable in all pharmacies for some reason.

I knew about Benzoyl Peroxide because my brother suffered from major acne problems, went to the doctors, and ended up getting it as a prescription (I think). One day I decided to try using it and it worked decently. So I did some research and found out you can just simply buy it over the counter. Though, there are 3 different levels of concentration to consider. It's highly advised for you to try out the 2 lower levels before getting the highest.

Blemish Treatment: Dr Gowoonsesang Red Spot Laser

A new favourite that I wish I had bought more of before leaving Korea!
This gel-based product really helped my blemishes heal faster than usual to the point that it doesn't become as noticeable. It basically lightens the blemish, though it doesn't get rid of it compeltely. I'm pretty sure if I was more diligent in applying it to the light blemishes, all of my old blemishes would have been gone by now.

I got mines from Gmarket when there was a deal: 2 tubes for around £10 - the original price for 1 was pretty expensive (£17 I think). I haven't seen this product in stores in Korea, but I may have seen the brand appear somewhere at least once.

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