Monday, March 26, 2018

Beauty Battle: Tony Moly Kiss Kiss Lovely Lip Patch Blueberry vs Etude House Cherry Jelly Lips Patch

Welcome to a new series called Beauty Battle!

There are so many different Kbeauty brands that have a wide variety of products. A lot of times those products are similar. Because of the overlap, I decided to take some of these products and put them up against each other.

There will be four different categories that I will judge the products by: packaging, application/ease of use, experience, and results. Points will be awarded in each category and will be tallied up in the end. Whichever product has the most points wins the battle!

For the first Beauty Battle, I am putting the Tony Moly Kiss Kiss Lovely Lip Patch Blueberry against the Etude House Cherry Jelly Lips Patch.

Tony Moly on Left, Etude House on Right



Package

Both of the lip patches come in sturdy plastic and pink packaging. The Tony Moly has ducks and blueberries on it and the Etude House has a cat on it. I feel like both of the products are cute and adorable and to be honest, I really don't have a preference over one or the other. Because it's a toss up to me, I'm calling it a draw and awarding each of the brands 1 point.

Application/Ease of use

For application/ease of use of the product, I found that both products fit over my lips nicely at first. However, as time went on, I found that the Tony Moly lip patch tended to come off easier and didn't want to stay put. I constantly had to adjust the lip patch. On the other hand, the Etude House lip path stayed in place and I didn't find myself having to adjust the lip patch, which is why I'm awarding Etude House 1 point for the better application.

Experience

Both the lip patches felt cooling and tingling on the lips, which I felt was pleasant. The feeling was essentially the same, but what differed between the two was the scents of the products. The Tony Moly smelled of berries and the Etude House was supposed to smell like cherries. However, the Etude House lip patch smelled more like a wine/alcohol scent and I really did not like it. The Tony Moly lip patch is getting the point in this round.

Results

As for the results, I paid close attention to my lips during and after the treatment of each lip patch. I used these lip patches around the same time and  didn't change anything else about my routine. I noticed that after I used the Etude House patch, my lips felt hydrated and soft. This wasn't the case for the Tony Moly lip patch. My lips were dry and patchy after use. For whatever reason, it seems that the Etude House brand was better  for my lips, so it gets the point.

FINAL VERDICT: 
 
Tony Moly: 2 points

Etude House: 3 points

And the winner is…
 
Etude House 



Just a note, even though the Etude House lip patch won, I really think that I won't be repurchasing either lip patches in the future. I just felt like overall both lip patches were not impressive and I'm going to have to search for a better one to use.

Anyway, I hope you all liked this Beauty Battle series! I'll be sure to find more similar products and put them to the test in the near future!

 
DISCLAIMER:
Just wanted to note that the products I review are all purchased with my own money, unless I state otherwise. If you do use any of these products, please do so at your discretion as the results will vary depending on the person and their skin type.  I am in no way responsible for the results or outcome if you decide to try any of the products I recommend. These reviews are my 100% honest thoughts. Please don't be offended if I didn't like a product that you happen to love. What may work or not work for me, may be totally different from you.




Friday, March 23, 2018

Holika Holika Prime Youth Bird's Nest Gold Moisture Cream and Gold Leaf Cream


What is it for?

A moisturizer for whitening and wrinkle care

Active Ingredients:

Swiftlet Nest Extract, Gold

To look at the full list of ingredients, its function for each, and its safety/irritant levels go ahead and click on this website:

For Bird's Nest Gold Moisture Cream: I tried to look up this product at www.cosdna.com, but couldn't find it listed.

For Bird's Nest Gold Leaf Cream: http://cosdna.com/eng/cosmetic_3645204608.html

Directions:

Gold Moisture Cream:
  1. Take desired amount with spatula
  2. Use fingers and dab around face
  3. Gently use hands to massage product onto skin

Gold Leaf Cream:
  1. Use spatula to scoop both cream and gold particles
  2. Use warmth of hands to melt product
  3. Apply to face while massaging


Review:

I got this from my visit to Korea last year. I was shopping at Holika Holika and this caught my eye. I really wanted to try a skincare product that contained bird's nest because I heard that it's beneficial and good for the skin. For those of you who don't know what exactly bird's nest is, they are nests that are made up of solidified saliva from birds known as the edible-nest swiftlets.  Bird's nest typically helps with skin and tissue repair and can help with one's complexion.


At the store, they were having a BOGO promotion on this product. The sales associate at the store told me that the white jar was for the day time and the blue jar was for the night. In total, both products came out to be around $55.00. As you'll see below the sets are  beautiful, elegant, and lux. Each box set came with the Gold Moisture Cream (white package) or Gold Leaf Cream (blue package), a spatula, and an additional two travel size Gold Moisture Creams. 


There is 55mL of product in both the Gold Moisture Cream and Gold Leaf Cream. They are placed in a glass jar with a shiny gold top. The Gold Moisture Cream is the day cream contained in the white packaging. The cream had visible gold flecks that easily absorbed into the skin. The cream helped moisturize and hydrate my skin, but aside from that I didn't see any other drastic changes to my skin. There is floral scent to product, which was fine and pleasant. However, the floral scent is overpowered by an alcohol-like scent. Due to that reason alone, I really didn't enjoy the using the product.  Overall, it worked fine as a moisturizer, but I wasn't super impressed with this moisturizer, especially for the price.





The Gold Leaf Cream was different from the Gold Moisture Cream. On the very top of the moisturizer, there is a layer of gold foil. On the bottom of the gold foil, there is a thick solid white cream. Using the spatula you're supposed to scrape both the cream and gold foil and melt them together with your fingers. I was worried that the cream was going to be too heavy because it has a waxy kind of feel/consistency, but it softens very easily and applies to the face very smoothly and evenly, like a normal face cream. It smells similar to the Gold Moisture Cream, but does not have a strong alcohol scent. I found that this cream was perfect for the night. The consistency was enough to keep my skin nicely hydrated throughout the night, but it didn’t feel greasy or oily.





Overall, I think these work fine as moisturizers, but it didn't seem like my skin picked up any other benefits. I really wouldn't recommend these products. The packaging was beautiful and felt lux, but I have used other creams that are much more affordable and work a lot better.

Overall:

Pros:
Cons:
*elegant packaging
*moisturized and hydrated skin
*easily absorbed into skin
*for Gold Lead Cream, a little goes a long way
*expensive (I got this as buy one get one, normally each moisturizer is sold as $55 USD individually)
*didn't make any changes aside from hydrating face
*Gold Moisture Cream had overwhelming alcohol-like scent

DISCLAIMER:
Just wanted to note that the products I review are all purchased with my own money, unless I state otherwise. If you do use any of these products, please do so at your discretion as the results will vary depending on the person and their skin type.  I am in no way responsible for the results or outcome if you decide to try any of the products I recommend. These reviews are my 100% honest thoughts. Please don't be offended if I didn't like a product that you happen to love. What may work or not work for me, may be totally different from you.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Missha: M Dewy Glossy Eyes

This post will be dedicated to Missha's M Dewy Glossy Eyes. Essentially, they're cream eye shadows full of glitter. These eye shadows are supposed to give a glossy/dewy shimmery look. I love a glittery look, so I bought the entire range. The range comes in 6 shades: Berry Smoothie (J17P07), French Pie (I09P06), Grape Candy (J18P05), Honey Roast (H25P07), Orange Pekoe (H23P06), White Beach (H24P06).

Packaging looks cute!
Each shadow costs about $12.00 on the Missha US website. However, because I have a "VIP" membership (which means you spend $100 within a calender year), I get products for 30% off. So in the end it cost me about $8.40 per eyeshadow.

The packaging is beige and gold with a clear top. It is definitely beautiful and lux looking/feeling. The eyeshadows have a bouncy and creamy consistency.

Berry Smoothie

French Pie

Grape Candy

Honey Roast

Orange Pekoe

White Beach

While applying these shadows, I found that it was best to use my finger. It very difficult to pick up product with a brush . As you can see from the swatches, these shadows are not super pigmented, but does pack a glittery punch.

 
Swatched from top to bottom: Berry Smoothie, French Pie, Grape Candy, Honey Roast,
Orange Pekoe,and White Beach

In the end, as excited as I was for these shadows, I was left disappointed. The shadows creased, faded, and moved around on my eyes, even when I used eye primer. They just didn't perform well for me and I would not recommend them. If you want an impactful and glittery look, I'd actually recommend the Aritaum Shine Fix Eyes instead. They're cheaper and perform much better than this M Dewy Glossy Eyes line.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Riley Rose: First Visit and Haul


Today, I'm going to write about my first experience at Riley Rose in Glendale Galleria. I first heard about this from  one of my favorite Youtubers, Morgan from The Beauty Breakdown. It seems like she collaborates often with Riley Rose. See her video here. Basically, she gave a tour around Riley Rose and what caught my eye was that this store had a large variety of Korean beauty/makeup products. Being that it’s kind of difficult to find a physical locale that has Korean beauty/makeup products in the Valley, I knew I had to visit this store!

Riley Rose Store Front

If you don’t know, Riley Rose was created by Forever 21's daughters Linda and Ester Chang. I really didn't know about this until after visiting the store. It make sense to me now that this was created from Forever 21 because I would explain the style and aesthetics as a mash up between Forever 21 and Sephora. 


Forever 21 Vibes
The store is bright and quite spacious. There is a ton of things to look at and shop around for, but everything is organized nicely so it doesn’t feel cluttered. There is a little something for everyone including: makeup (both American and Korean/Asian brands), skin care, hair care, stationary, home goods, and sweets/candy.

Super cute vanity set up!
Useful tips and tricks!

Sugar section

Home goods



Hair section

In terms of Korean/Asian brands, they definitely have a great selection with some brand I've heard of and some I'm completely not familiar with. Some brands you can expect at the store include: Missha, Tony Moly, CosRx, Banilla Co, Peripera, Ettang, Elizavecca, etc.


Brands: Tony Moly and Ettang

Loads of different masks: lip, nose, and face masks.





I ended up buying things I've never used or heard before. Here are the things that I hauled:

Haul from Riley Rose





Banilla Co Hi Bye Vita-Peel Clear Pad $21.00
Blossom (infused with real flowers) roll-on perfume oil : Honey Jasmine $7.00
Jay Jun Cosmetic Anti-Dust Therapy Mask $3.20
Jay Jun Cosmetic Anti-Dust Whitening Mask $3.20
Jay Jun Cosmetic Full of Water Cream $36.00

Because I bought more than $50.00 worth of items, I got a free silver cosmetic bag which included a H2O+ Beauty Sea Greens Body Butter and a Lapcos Milk Moisturing Mask. It was a pleasant bonus!

Freebies
I was very happy with my first trip and I will definitely be going back! I usually buy my Kbeauty things online and I will continue to do so. However, I do like the convenience of going to a physical store because I can swatch and look at the products in person. It's really nice to be able to feel, smell, and see an item so I cant get a better understanding if it's something I really wanna spend my money on. It's also nice to get the item immediately and not have to wait for shipping.

If you can, I definitely recommend dropping by a Riley Rose store near you. If you can't they do have a website you can order off of: https://www.rileyrose.com/us/shop/


DISCLAIMER:
This is not sponsored! I bought everything with my own money and I genuinely wanted to write a review about this store.









Friday, March 2, 2018

Empties #3


My third set of empties!

As previously stated, if I don't have a mini-review down below, then I have already or am going to make a more in-depth review/post about that item!

Here are my Empties #3:


Bonvivant Botanical Mellow Clay Mask
Ettang Modeling Take-Out Cup Pack Propolis
Holika Holika Cheoeum : Balhyo Miracle Seed First Essence
Holika Holika Prime Youth Bird's Nest Gold Moisture Cream
IOPE Live Lift Serum
Mamonde Rose Water Soothing Gel
Mizon Enjoy Fresh - On Time Sweet Honey Mask
Neogen Code9 Tox Tightening Pack
Nivea Rich Nourishing Body Cream
Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Spray (Read my thoughts on this here: http://mbhbeauty.blogspot.com/2016/10/empties-1.html)

Bonvivant Botanical Mellow Clay Mask Jeju Volcanic Mask



I got this as a kit of 3 clay masks for "rainbow masking" on hautelook for around $30. This was one of three clay masks. This clay mask specifically targets blackhead, oil production, and pore control. The mask is a jelly like consistency and feels cool when applying to the face. It doesn't dry out the skin and does a decent job at helping with clearing up the skin.  Overall, it’s a good clay mask. Just keep in mind, that Bonvivant has now been rebranded to I Dew Care. So if you want to try this mask get the I Dew Care Pure To The Pore Mask.

Ettang Modeling Take-Out Cup Pack Propolis



This is 1 of 8 cup packs. I believe the whole set cost about $26 dollars. I used this because I was having a problem with some breakouts at the time. Propolis has good anti-inflammatory properties and helps with healing problematic skin. You're supposed to mix water into the cup and use the spatula that's provided to apply it on the skin. The product has a more paste like consistency. It was difficult to apply  to the skin and dried to a rubery texture. Although this specific cup helped with reducing redness during my breakouts, I really didn't like the way it applied to my skin and felt. I'm not going to be repurchasing these.

Holika Holika Cheoeum : Balhyo Miracle Seed First Essence



I got this as a sample when I went to Korea. I love this stuff. I'm definitely going to have to purchase the full size of this. This essence smells lovely, feels nice on the skin, hydrates, and helped with the texture of my skin.

Mamonde Rose Water Soothing Gel




I got this at an Aritaum shop in San Gabriel for about $20. I ended up using this as a body moisturizer during the summer. It worked okay, but didn't absorb well and was sticky after it dried. It smelled like roses, but there is also an overwhelming smell of rubbing alcohol. I love some of the Mamonde Rose line, but this is not one of the products I will be repurchasing.

Neogen Code9 Lemon Green Caviar Essence Tox Tightening Pack



I got this in a bundle when memebox used to sell skin care. This has 25 dual ended pads. One side was like a netted mesh that helped with exfoliating and the other side was more of a smooth cotton surface that helped distribute the product onto your face. This particular pack smelled of lemon. I really liked these a lot for the nights that I was lazy or short on time with my skin care. This provides you benefits of a more elaborate skin care system in one single step. I will definitely repurchase from Neogen eventually.

Nivea Rich Nourishing Body Cream



I picked this up at Ross on a whim one day for like $7. It was fall/winter time and my body tends to dry out a significant amount. This is a very fragrant and thick cream. It is definitely a heavy duty moisturizer and a little goes a long way. However, because of the strong perfume scent, I didn't really enjoy this product as much and won't be repurchasing.

DISCLAIMER:
Just wanted to note that the products I review are all purchased with my own money, unless I state otherwise. If you do use any of these products, please do so at your discretion as the results will vary depending on the person and their skin type.  I am in no way responsible for the results or outcome if you decide to try any of the products I recommend. These reviews are my 100% honest thoughts. Please don't be offended if I didn't like a product that you happen to love or vice versa. What may work or not work for me, may be totally different from you.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off


What is it for?

An exfoliating mask that keeps skin hydrated

Active Ingredients:

Black sugar sourced from Brazil

To look at the full list of ingredients, its function for each, and its safety/irritant levels go ahead and click on this website: http://cosdna.com/eng/cosmetic_8d1f106766.html

Directions:

  1. Take a pea size to half teaspoon amount.
  2. Gently massage onto dampened skin, avoiding eyes and lips.
  3. Leave it on for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Rinse off with lukewarm water.

Review:

The packaging for this product is a very simple white exterior with cardboard-esque labeling. I'd classify it as a mixture of a rustic/hipster kind of feel. There is 100g of product and I bought this online for about $9. There is no spatula that comes with the product, which as always can be slightly unhygienic because you're dipping your fingers into the product.

Skin Food Black Sugar Packaging

Skin Food Black Sugar Packaging

The scrub is brown  and filled with sugar granules. I find the scent very pleasant. It smells of a sweet mixture of delicious honey and lemongrass. The product is slightly thick and goopy straight from the packaging, so I often use a little bit of water to soften it before putting on my face. I also like to use water to slightly dissolve the sugar granules because  personally for me, I feel it can be a bit too rough when putting it directly on my face.  I love the fact you can adjust/customize how strong of a mechanical exfoliation you want by using water.

Black Sugar

Black Sugar Directly from Package

Black Sugar smoothed out


I use this mostly as an exfoliator and rarely leave this on as a rinse off mask. I use this about 1-2x a week.  It's an effective exfoliator without being super harsh or stripping of my skin. After each use, my skin feels a lot smoother and softer. I find that this has definitely help my skin with texture and dullness.

It's a great product to have in your skin care regimen, I highly recommend it and will continue to repurchase and use this product.

Overall:

Pros:
Cons:
*Effective exfoliator
*Does not strip skin
*Smells great
*Inexpensive
*Can be unhygienic due to constantly dipping fingers into product
 

DISCLAIMER:
Just wanted to note that the products I review are all purchased with my own money, unless I state otherwise. If you do use any of these products, please do so at your discretion as the results will vary depending on the person and their skin type.  I am in no way responsible for the results or outcome if you decide to try any of the products I recommend. These reviews are my 100% honest thoughts. Please don't be offended if I didn't like a product that you happen to love. What may work or not work for me, may be totally different from you.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Shopping at Myeongdong


This post is going to be about my experience and tips for shopping at Myeongdong! As stated in my Haul from Korea post, I went on a trip which included a 6-day stay in Korea! (I also went to Taiwan and Japan, where I hauled some other things, but that will be for another post!)

For those of you who don't know, Myeongdong is one of Seoul's main shopping districts. There are a TON of stores that include food, fashion, cosmetics, and skin care.

There are so many stores, it's a Kbeauty enthusiast's dream!

I live in California and typically buy Kbeauty stuff online.  So, it was a dream come true for a Kbeauty enthusiast like me to walk among these streets and get an opportunity to shop in these stores.

I only had enough time for about 2 hours of shopping (due to time constraints). Since I was short on time, I was speeding fast through the stores, so I couldn't vlog or document my entire shopping experience for my blog like I was originally planning to do.

Anyways, here are my notes and tips from my own experience:

1. Do you research ahead of time

There are SO many stores and products. It is very easy to get overwhelmed by it. My suggestion is to research ahead of time on the products that you are most interested in buying. Of course, buy what you like if you see it. But if I were to do it again, I would have made a list and taken my time browsing. There were definitely things I wish I could've or forgot to buy AFTER I came back home…so research and make a list!

2. Create a budget and save for it 

Things add up fast! There are SO many cute things from every direction and you will want to BUY THEM ALL. I literally wanted to put everything in my cart for each store I visited. It's very easy to get carried away and spend way too much.  So create a budget and save for it.

3. Talk to the sale associates

I was very pleasantly surprised about the sale associates. They were all very friendly, made me feel comfortable, and some of them were able to communicate with me. Being in another country, you can't assume that everyone can speak English. However, SOME (not all) of the sale associates can speak a few languages, including English. When I had any questions or concerns,  they were there to help me or point me in the right direction. They're knowledgeable and can make the right recommendations for your skin type and skin concerns. They also know what types of sales or promotions the store is currently having, which brings me to the next tip…

4. Pay attention to the deals/promos/sales
There are always some sort promotion or sale going on. If you are unsure, you can ask the sale associates. Some of the deals or sales can be a reduction of prices, buy one get one free, or packaged bundles at a lower cost. For example, I made purchases on some sheet masks, and I was able to get another set for free. It can definitely be more cost effective to buy the things that are on special.

Buy one get one free
5. Samples/Goodies

You will take a TON of samples home. There will be two ways of getting samples. The first one will be  when you're walking through the streets. As you walk by the stores, there will be people handing out free samples to you. Just a warning, this is the way they try to get you to come into the store. As soon as you grab the sample, the person will hand you a basket and usher you into the store. However, you are NOT obligated to purchase anything at all. If you browse and don't find anything you like, you can leave and still keep the sample. I'm just giving you "a warning" in case you feel uncomfortable. You don't have to take the sample, but it's free regardless if you buy anything in their store or not.  

The other way of getting free samples is after purchase. No matter big or small of a purchase, each of the stores will let you leave with some kind of goodie or sample. Many of the stores were SUPER generous in their samples/goodies. Some of the samples included skin care, sheet masks, and even full size products.

Sheet masks I got for free
Samples I got for free
6. Tax Free/ Refund on Tax

When you go to Myeongdong, bring your passport with you.  If you do not live in Korea, you are not subjected to the taxes. As a result, you can save more money. The only thing you have to do is show proof via your passport. When you show proof, they will take away the taxes at check out.
 I had no idea about this and didn't bring my passport while I was shopping, but I was still able to save money through another method. If you don't have your passport on you OR you don't want to carry it around, just simply ask or tell the person at the cash register you don't have your passport and they will print you out your receipt and a tax refund slip that has a barcode. DO NOT lose these slips. If you lose them, you will not be able to get a refund on the taxes that you paid.  When you go back to the international airport and after you pass customs, there will be signs that direct you to an area where you can use a kiosk to input the receipts and get a refund on the tax.

Receipts for Tax Refund

One of the envelopes to hold receipt for tax refund. It has instructions on how to get your refund





I ended up getting around $25 USD back! So, if you want to save more money, then use your passport or go through the process at the airport.


Well, those are all my tips from my experience at Myeongdong! Hopefully, they help you out! I loved shopping here, and I really look forward to coming back and taking a lot more time next time.




Monday, February 5, 2018

Welcos Jeju Natural Volcanic Sheet Mask

  What is it for?

Pore care & sebum control

Active Ingredients:

volcanic ash, opuntia ficus-indica stem extract, camellia japonca flower extract

To look at the full list of ingredients, its function for each, and its safety/irritant levels go ahead and click on this website: http://www.cosdna.com/eng/cosmetic_4969215718.html

Directions:

  1. Open the packet up.
  2. Unfold the mask inside.
  3. Place mask on face, making sure to place the holes in the mask to your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  4. Leave on for 20 minutes.
  5. Take off mask, tap the essence of the mask into your skin to absorb. Do not rinse.

Review:
 
I picked these sheet masks up at TJ MAXX. It came in a pack of 10 for about 7 or 8 dollars.  The  sheet mask has a picture of a volcano and a gray statue. The statue reminds me of grade school when I learned about the Olmecs... I wonder if they teach those kind of things at school still? Anyway, here's what the mask looks like:




The sheet mask is made of a thick, sturdy, and soft material, which was surprising because usually masks like these are more expensive. It was saturated in essence and felt nice and cooling on my face. The essence smelled like flowers. It wasn't super overpowering and I enjoyed the scent.

Generally, sheet masks always make my skin feel more hydrated and plump. I do notice that with certain sheet masks, it can leave my skin feeling slightly sticky and overly moisturized. I think the "overly moisturized" part has to do with the fact that I have oily combo skin. However, the Jeju Volcanic Mask provided a good balance of hydration. The essence absorbed nicely into my skin, made it feel hydrated, but didn't leave me feeling sticky after.

I paid close attention to my skin the next day. I wanted to see if the mask did in fact control sebum. I noticed that the day after I use these masks, my face was not as oily as it usually is. In regards to my pores, I really didn’t notice a difference when using these mask. But like I said earlier, this mask adds a good balance of hydration to the face, so I think it would still be good for all skin types, even dry ones.

Although this was a good mask, the way the mask was shaped/cut made it difficult to fit properly on my face.  It got kind of bothersome that it didn't fit on my face and I had to keep readjusting it. Because of that reason, I really don't think I'll be repurchasing the masks. I just have other masks that I like a lot better and that fit better. 

Overall:

Pros:
Cons:
*decent quality for the price
*provides balance of moisture to the face
*absorbs nicely into the skin
*controls oil
*smells nice
*don't notice a difference in pores
*sheetmask cut out makes it difficult to fit over face



DISCLAIMER:
Just wanted to note that the products I review are all purchased with my own money, unless I state otherwise. If you do use any of these products, please do so at your discretion as the results will vary depending on the person and their skin type.  I am in no way responsible for the results or outcome if you decide to try any of the products I recommend. These reviews are my 100% honest thoughts. Please don't be offended if I didn't like a product that you happen to love or vice versa. What may work or not work for me, may be totally different from you.