beauty

Review: SCINIC First Treatment Essence

Hey friends! This is a long overdue review, of a product that I’ve used since March (remember that Glass Skin Challenge?)

As you recall, one of the steps of the Korean skincare regimen includes “essence”. This mystery product that isn’t a fixture in most American skincare routines but it’s a must have for a proper Korean-inspired regimen.

cottonpad

“Essence” is a nutrient-rich solution used after toning the skin but before applying heavier products like ampoules (serums). It prepares the skin for the following steps by hydrating and balancing the skin.

I tried SCINIC First Treatment Essence because I didn’t know what to expect from this step of my routine and I wanted to try it as affordably as possible. According to the Amazon listing, the product contains “80% fermented yeast concentrate”, which both alarmed and intrigued me.

I gave SCINIC a try during the Glass Skin challenge. Even though I haven’t been able to isolate the efficacy of this product (after all, I used it along with several other new products), I am comfortable saying that I really like it! I enjoyed it so much that I purchased more after I ran out.

The thing about essence is that it really makes the skin feel refreshed and hydrated after using it. I noticed that my skin retained moisture well while using essence but the extra moisture didn’t result in breakouts or clogged pores/congested skin. My skin has been really vibrant with this product in my routine. I’m glad I tried it!

beauty · luxury

Glass Skin Challenge – Final Results

In a previous post, I talked about the Glass Skin Challenge that I planned to do in the month of March. I also mentioned small tweaks that I made in my routine during the month. I did this routine for a month and recorded my pre-experiment and post-experiment skin. Here are the photos of my results for the Glass Skin Challenge!

Before the routine:

After the routine:

I loved the results and, though my camera can’t quite capture the difference, just know that my skin has clearly improved. I’ve even been complimented on my skin, which let’s me know that the products are working. As a quick recap, my skin type is combination, sensitive and acne-prone. So I wanted to see if this routine a) made my skin too dry or too oily, b) aggravated my skin and caused additional sensitive issues, c) made my acne flare up, and, most importantly, d) made my skin look its best. I’ll list the pros and cons of the routine below:.

Pros:

  • It doesn’t take as long as you would think. It took me about 5 minutes longer to do this routine than my old routine.
  • You don’t have to literally do 10 steps twice a day. The most that I did during any singular skin care session was 8 steps.
  • It didn’t make me break out. All that product on my skin, and not once did I have a clogged pore or pimple.
  • It helped fade dark marks. The combination of consistent exfoliation and regular sunscreen usage seemed to make a big difference in fading the scars.

Cons:

  • You go through a LOT of products. You do have 10+ of them that you’re using, after all. The essence, which I used twice a day, seemed to really go pretty fast.
  • It can get pricey. My exfoliant (the Alpha Beta Ultra Gentle Daily Peel by Dr. Dennis Gross) was $88 for a 30-day supply, and, depending on where you get your essence (I used SCINIC), it may cost you $20-30 for a bottle that won’t last for much more than a month. My Caudalie toner wasn’t cheap, either, though I LOVED it and will definitely purchase again.
  • The exfoliant I used gave me the “Hollywood star”, super-shiny skin look. You know how some actors and actresses have waxy looking skin that has been botoxed and chemically peeled to the max? Yeah, I was starting to get that look. I’m glad that my skin has a bit more density to it: the look only lingered at night, after exfoliating. My daytime routine didn’t have me looking like a sculpture.

After doing the Glass Skin routine, I realized that some of the imperfections I tried to correct were actually small flesh moles that couldn’t be removed via an at-home skin care regimen. Also, I learned that overall brightness and clarity in a complexion can really make you look more alert and healthy.

While I can’t promise that I’ll adhere strictly to the regimen in the future, I am comfortable saying that I will stick pretty closely to the 10-step program and see if I can further perfect my complexion.

beauty · luxury

March Beauty Challenge: Glass Skin

I don’t spend a lot of time talking about my skin care routine on this blog because, well, there’s a lot more to life than beauty stuff. But I recently saw a post about a woman that had “glass skin”: skin so flawless that it looked shiny and smooth like glass. And, I was intrigued by what could create such a perfect, poreless complexion. After reading the post and comparing the “glass skin” routine to the Korean 10 step product routine, I decided that I would do a “glass skin” challenge during the month of March.

My skin is combination and can be sensitive at times. This routine will (hopefully!) help nourish my post-winter complexion and give me the kind of skin that looks perfect without makeup.

djournae

The goal is to look as gorgeous as Kezia by the end of the month (photo courtesy of D’Journae)

The ten steps as outlined by Self magazine are as follows, and the products I’ll be using for each step are also listed:

  • Oil cleanser (to remove makeup): food grade coconut oil
  • Foam cleanser: Mary Kay 3-in-1 Cleanser (for combination/oily skin)
  • Exfoliant (advised for 1 – 3 times week use): Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Ultra Gentle Daily Peel for Sensitive Skin (I’ll use this one daily, as it’s gentle)
  • Toner: Caudalie Grape Water
  • Essence: SCINIC First Treatment Essence
  • Serum/booster/ampoule: The Ordinary Niacinamide and “Buffet” serums, Mary Kay Timewise Night Solution
  • Mask (1 – 2 times per week): Mary Kay Moisture Renewing Gel Mask
  • Eye cream: Mary Kay Firming Eye Cream
  • Face cream: Mary Kay Age Fighting Moisturizer (for combination/oily skin)
  • SPF: Mary Kay Timewise Day Solution

Whew, so many products! I currently use anywhere from 4-7 products per cleansing session, but adding these additional products will be new for me. To be fair, some of these will only be used once or twice a week, or only once a day, so, while the list looks long, not every product will be used twice a day.