[REVIEW] Hanyul Rice Essential Skin Emulsion

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Price: 38 000 Won / 125 ml

Skincare products continue to one of the most challenging things for me to review. The effects of skincare product varies from person to person. How it affects your skin when you first use it and when you finish the entire product may also be different. After trying many products, it became really hard to say which product contributed to what effect and this is why I've waited until I finished the entire product before I tell you guys what I think. 

Although I know a Hanyul Rice Essential Skin Emulsion review was requested a while ago, it really took me a while to think about how I feel towards this product. Let me start off by giving you an introduction to Hanyul.

Hanyul is a brand which is part of AmorePacific. Their vision and mission is to provide skincare products that embodies the wisdom that older generations have and pass it onto younger generations.   It focuses on natural and traditional Korean ingredients. For example, the use of rice water for skin softening and brightening purposes has been known for a long time.

"Rice, Koreans' staple food, has been used as moisturizing skincare ingredient for women for a long time now" - source: Hanyul information paper. 

I believe the target market for Hanyul are people between the ages of 20 + , as much of their skincare range focuses on whitening and anti-ageing. I would say their prices are definitely on the higher end, similar to Iope's and Hera's.  You can purchase Hanyul products at Aritaum.

Hanyul Rice Essential Skin Emulsion focuses on anti-wrinkle and whitening

"Rice Essential Skin Emulsion makes rough skin soft as moisture and nourishment are delivered deep into skin. The fermented extract of Yeoju rice -- grown by clean water from Namhangang River and in rich, sandy red soil full of organic matter -- strengthens the oil and moisture balance in skin and makes skin firm by providing rich nourishment to dry, chapped skin. "

It comes in a study glass bottle with a metal pump and a plastic lid. I am glad to say that even after handling this bottle for half a year now, none of the words have rubbed off. It's definitely high quality packaging.

Directions: "After using our essence in the morning and at nighttime, evenly apply on the face and neck and gently tap to enhance the absorption of ingredients. (Approximate amount per use 2 - 3 pumps)."

I find that 1- 2 pumps was enough for me.

Steps on How to Apply your skincare. 

Like all the other Hanyul products that I have tried, this does have a herbally scent. It does not smell synthetic at all. Although you definitely can notice the scent right away, it disappears after application. Personally, I find it to be very therapeutic and relaxing.

You can see the light, almost watery consistency the emulsion has when it's spread out.

I have been using this product for a while now twice a day. In the morning and at night, I use it after my toner and serum.  I find that 2 pumps was usually the ideal amount for my skin. It has a really light consistency and despite being really moisturizing, it doesn't feel heavy or greasy at all. I find that this product absorbs incredibly well and my skin just drinks it up.  After tapping the product as instructed by the pamphlet into my skin, it leaves a very very slight tackiness which disappears after a few minutes. In the summer, the emulsion is moisturizing enough to be use on its own while in the winter, I like to add a drop of argan oil into a pump of emulsion and I find that the oil absorbs into my skin faster and leave less of an oily residue.

In terms of its anti-aging focus, that is a tricky thing to define because like whitening, there are so many other factors that can contribute to it. Your diet, sleep, and environment probably plays a bigger role in how your skin looks and feels than what a single product can do for you and expecting a single product to fix everything would be unfair. However, what I do know is that this product has kept my skin really hydrated and plump.

Despite using the entire bottle now, it's really hard to say whether or not it truly whitens or brightens my face. I think it truly did brighten my skin a little but it's a gradual brightening effect and that is good enough for me. After using so many products now, I find that the most effective ones in the long run are the ones that help your skin gradually.

Overall, I feel that Hanyul Rice Essential Skin Emulsion was a good investment for my skin. It's light, highly moisturizing, absorbs quickly, and doesn't leave any residue. I would definitely repurchase it.

[HAUL] Korean Beauty

Thursday, July 23, 2015
As you may all know, Innisfree is one of my favourite brands of all time. The fact that they source their ingredients from Jeju Island is just the icing on the cake. I have been to Jeju a few times now and I absolutely love it there. The atmosphere, the whether, and the people are very different from Seoul. It is a place where one can just relax and soak in the beauty of the Earth. So whenever I look at Innisfree, I just think back at the wonders that Jeju Island represents. 

Today's haul is mainly due to some of the limited edition items that Innisfree came out with.

1. Innisfree Ampoule Intense Cushion (2015 Limited Edition) - the main reason for this haul. Although the Ampoule Intense Cushion is designed for winter use and it's summer right now, I just couldn't resist the camellia flowers on the case.  

1. Water Glow Cushion 2. Long Wear Cushion 3. Ampoule Intense Cushion

2. Innisfree Glow Liquid Shadow #1 - Liquid shadows seem to be trending up all around the world these days. I've seen some Korean YouTubers feature this in their makeup tutorials. It seems pretty awesome and I can't wait to try it! The lady divers on the cap remind me of those in the Kdrama Warm and Cozy.

3. Nature Republic Soothing & Moisture Aloe Vera 92% Soothing Gel (repurchase) - although I've seen many brands come out with Aloe Vera gels recently, this is the one I've tested and tried for years now. Now that it's summer time and I'm outside quite often, aloe vera is a necessity. 

4. Etude House Dr. Mascara Fixer Longlash Up Curl Fix Coating Fix (repurchase) - I've recently discover this lash primer and I absolutely love it! It lengthens and holds my eyelash curl really well and it's only around $5!

5. Etude House My Beauty Tool Eyelash Curler (for Monolids) - I thought the pink and curl packaging is really cute.

6. Missha The Style 4D Mascara - I have been hearing amazing things about this mascara. I can't wait to try it out as well!

Bonus: I've received a Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm Sample for free with my purchase. 

[REVIEW] NYX Butter Gloss (Vanilla Cream Pie (BLG09) and Peaches and Cream (BLG 03))

Wednesday, July 8, 2015
"Butter me up with divine gloss that feels like it melts on lips."

Claims: "Buttery soft and silky smooth our scrumptious new Butter Lip Gloss tastes as sweet as a sugar cookie—and makes your lips look downright luscious. Swipe it on alone or over your favorite lipstick for creamy sheer to medium coverage that melts onto your lips and is never sticky." - source: NYX Website

NYX’s Butter glosses have been around for a while but I’ve just recently discovered the right colors for myself and I freaking love them. They take me by surprise because I’m not really a gloss girl but these have me converted.

They come in a wide variety of colors.  I originally tried this product in Merengue and I remember really disliking it – mainly because the color was unsuitable for me and also because the consistency was thinner and thus applied patchier than the two recent ones I’ve purchased. This time I chose Vanilla Cream Pie and Peaches and Cream and it’s these two colors that I will be reviewing today.

These butter glosses are so convenient to carry around because they are moisturizing enough to replace my lip balm and pigmented enough to act as a lip color. I have no problem applying these on dry lips and they hide rather than accentuate dry spots on my lips. They really do melt onto the lips like butter and they feel light on the lips as well.

At around $5 USD, they’re very affordable. Although I purchased mine at full price, they often go on sale at Buy 1 Get 1 Half Off at Ulta.

The applicator is slanted at the base which allows for precise application on the lips.

On my lips, they last about 3 to 4 hours (without eating) - which is decent staying time for a gloss. It’s definitely not a watery gloss. I feel like they have a base that really attaches itself on the lips and this is what keeps it on. Needless to say, it won’t be completely removed with a napkin.
These are scented. They have a very sweet, sugary frosting scent. Unless you are very sensitive to scents, I don’t think you need to worry too much about it.  Personally I find the scent quite pleasant and after a few minutes I don’t even notice it anymore.

Vanilla Cream Pie is described as mauve on the website and correctly so. It has fair colour payoff but the consistency is lighter than Peaches and Cream. 

Peaches and Cream is described as a pink coral. 

BLG 09 Vanilla Cream Pie

BLG 03 Peaches and Cream

Overall, I recommend checking these out. Since there is a wide color selection, I believe everyone can find a color that is suited for them. Of the two, Peaches and Cream is definitely my favorite because the color is more flattering on me and the consistency is a bit thicker. Lighter colours tend to be more watery than the darker colors. 

If you check these out, please make sure to let me know what you think!

Thanks for reading :)

[REVIEW] Etude House Lovely Cookie Blusher in #6 Grapefruit Jelly

Sunday, July 5, 2015
Etude House’s Lovely Cookie Blushers have been around for a while now and I’m sure you’ve seen them somewhere before. If the cute packaging isn’t enough to convince you why you need to purchase them already, this review will certainly do.

The Lovely Cookie Blushers have long been part of the permanent Etude House collection. As a result, there are 12 colors to chose from. The colors range from orangey peach to pinks to plums. The color which I’m reviewing for you today is #6 Grapefruit Jelly.

Normally I’m drawn to cool tone pinks as I find that they are most suited to brightening my face. However, I chose #6 after hearing that it is Pony’s (Korean Makeup Artist/Blogger) favorite blushers (her instagram is my reference). #6 Grapefruit Jelly is a soft, peachy pink.  It’s incredibly natural looking on my skin no matter how heavy I put it on. Safe to say, if I want to have that no-makeup makeup look, this would be my top pick for blusher.

According to their website, this product is:

“A blusher that supplies cheeks with vivid color for a peppy and gorgeous look by just light dabbing with the included lovely puff.
* The BEST pink blush in 2015 awarded by 'Get it Beauty'

Blur effect: The unique powder that reflects shine to various ways to express bright skin color is used to deliver excellent application and delicate vivid colors.

Long lasting: Sebum Control Powder tech is applied to absorb sebum to maintain fresh makeup and it contains Coating Pigment for long-lasting clear makeup.

Lovely Puff: Fluffy cushion type puff helps blend and build beautifully to desired intensity.”

Although many people love the round plastic packaging, I’m personally not a big fan of it. It’s very cute, but it is a hassle to store. The curvature of the lid makes it impossible to stack them on top of each other so I much prefer the sturdy, flat packaging of Tony Moly’s Cristal Blushers. The frosted plastic of the curve lid also looks quite delicate so I’m pretty sure if I were to drop it, it would crack.

It comes with a cute little furry puff with an adorable pink ribbon. It’s housed inside the case with a plastic shield separating the poof from the blush.  Although I’ve stuck to applying this blush with my regular brushes, I’m sure this puff will be handy on the go. I haven’t actually needed to use it yet though because this blush has awesome staying power.


As you all probably know by now, I am a huge fan of asian cosmetics and this product just shows why. For around $5 USD, this blush is comparable is not better than all the high end blushes I've tried to date. So rather spending $30 on my next blush, I'd rather spend $5 and use the rest of the money to buy myself a meal (or more probable - more makeup).


This product is soft, blendable, and very fine. No matter how hard I swirl my blush in it, it doesn't seem to chalk up. True to its claim, it does create a blur effect on my cheek. It looks bright and sweet, yet very natural. I don't have to worry about applying too heavy of a hand because I can blend it out easily. I will also say this is quite long lasting on my cheeks - probably around five to six hours.

If you are wondering how this compares to the Tony Moly Cristal Blushers, the main difference that I see is that the Etude House Lovely Cookie Blusher is softer, less dry and creates a more blurred effect than the Tony Molys but the Tony Molys' are longer lasting and come in a wider array of colours. I recommend blushes from both brands. 

L-R: Skinfood, Tony Moly, Etude House

Here are some of the colours, I found to be similar in pan to the Etude House Lovely Cookie Blusher #6 Grapefruit Jelly.  Skinfood Cream Blusher (reviewed here) is more much pink based and dries down to a complete matte, Tony Moly #3 Pleasure Peach has an orangey undertone and it has a sheen over it which isn't prominent in pictures, and the Etude House #6 is completely matte with no sheen and looks as if it can blend right into my skin. I had to heavily swatch all of these blushers to make sure they appear on camera. 

If I had to pick a favourite among these three, the Etude House Lovely Cookie Blusher is definitely my favourite because of it's natural blurry finish and colour. I highly recommend trying out this line of blushers from Etude House!

[REVIEW] Bobbi Brown Long Lasting Gel Eyeliner in Black Scotch (Limited Edition)

Friday, July 3, 2015

Black Scotch is a limited edition gel eyeliner that came out with the Bobbi Brown Holidays 2014 collection. The moment I saw pictures of it, I knew I had to get it. Since we didn't have Nordstroms nor Macys where I live, I had a hard time figuring out how to get my hands on it. After a trip to Chicago over Christmas, I found my solution.

As this product is limited edition, you may be wondering why I am reviewing it. The answer is that, I made a promise to someone. Seeing this gel eyeliner in Macy's after being told that it was sold out months ago at Nordstrom prompt an immediate impulse buy - after which I promised that someone that I would do a review on it - more than half a year later - here it is. This review may also be beneficial to those of you who can find it from an individual seller or somehow stumble upon it at cosmetic outlets.

Although, the box is different from the usually black Bobbi Brown gel liner boxes, the actual jar is the same as the gel liners in the permanent collection - glass jar with simple plastic lid. 

Although it looks like quite a solid dark brown, you'll be surprised to see what's underneath - and it's beauty that will wow you. 

Underneath the seemingly dark brown top, the gel liner is actually a warm amber, shimmer packed milk brown.

Depending on where the light hits it, the shimmers in the gel liner can come off as warm, golden amber or just golden. However, on the eyes, it pretty much looks like a regular brown liner - making it year-round, daily-wear friendly.

Although this is my first Bobbi Brown gel liner, I've heard a lot of hype on this product beforehand ... and the actual product does not disappoint! I find it to be amazingly easy to work - it's not too wet as some gel liners can be nor dry is it at all. It's smooth and soft while providing solid pigmentation. I don't need to worry about blinking my eyes and causing the line to smudge because it won't smudge! You have about five seconds to smudge the liner out before it sets. Once set, it will not budge (although with Black Scotch, the shimmers will kind of smudge out of place even after the liner yet, but it's not to a degree where it's really noticeable.)

I would describe Black Scotch to be a warm, milk chocolate brown with golden amber shimmer. Although the swatch is gorgeous, I'm afraid on the eyes, the shimmer isn't really noticeable, so don't feel too bad if you've missed out on Black Scotch - just try another color from Bobbi Brown's Long Wear Gel Liner line!

When I went on a trip recently, this was the only brown liner that I packed. Even after going hiking and canoeing in warm humid weather, my liner did not budge. I am super happy with my purchase.

I would completely recommend this product and I'm looking forward to trying many more of items from Bobbi Brown cosmetics in the future.

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