Mini Review – How to make your own Sheet Mask!

Monkey Mask Black and White(2)(source)

No??  Oh, OK then.

Quite a while ago now I bought some plain sheet masks from Muji. I really love Muji – every time I go in there I come out with a big brown bag full of lovely and practical items.  it smells AMAZING (due to the many Aroma diffusers puffing out their gorgeous citrus-y smoke) and is really good value for money.

Muji is where I stock up on acrylic storage for my makeup, on wipes for my glasses and on blotting paper for my lovely oily face!  Last visit I also bought a couple of empty spray bottles for an upcoming post / experiment on Patting Water and Mists.

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MUJI was founded in Japan in 1980 as an antithesis to the habits of consumer society at that time…..The concept was born of the intersection of two distinct stances: no brand (Mujirushi) and the value of good items (ryohin).

MUJI’s concept of emphasizing the intrinsic appeal of an object through rationalization and meticulous elimination of excess is closely connected to the traditionally Japanese aesthetic of “su” –– meaning plain or unadorned –– the idea that simplicity is not merely modest or frugal, but could possibly be more appealing than luxury.

The Sheet Mask

The items in question are known as Compressed Face Masks and they are available at £3.95 for 20 or £1.50 for 5. I believe that you can buy similar items on Ebay in bulk as well.

They are made of non woven 100% cotton pulp in Japan. Using a compressed facial mask sheet can allow flexibility with ingredients and is also a great idea to use up some products that have been lying around unused in the vast Meme hoard or are soon to expire, as well as true DIY recipes using everyday ingredients.

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They also do an under eye version (£1.50 for 20) that I haven’t tried yet.

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Back view:

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The instructions are obviously not in English, luckily they provide an English instruction pdf on their website.

How to use:

1. Pour face lotion into the cap or something else and soak one sheet with it.

2. After the sheet swells enough with lotion, spread it from the eyes to other parts of your whole face.

3. Stay still to pack the area for 5 to 10 minutes, and then remove the sheet.

Obviously the ‘face lotion’ is up to you (that is the whole point of the endeavour after all) and I would say that the timing is a general guideline and probably (definitely!) is erring on the side of caution there.
NB. Common sense should be liberally applied.

The Essence

I decided to soak mine in the Seatree Syn-ake Essence that I received from Memebox at the end of last year, which had a very short expiry date (Feb 2015).  Got to use it up somehow!

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Product Description:
Seatree Syn-ake Essence contains youth preserving ingredients, such as Syn-ake peptides, similar in composition to snake venom, and hyaluronic acid to help deliver targeted repair – as needed, where needed. Recommended for all skin types, ages and ethnicities, it visibly addresses uneven skin tone, lines and wrinkles for visibly firmer, more radiant and more supple skin.

What is Syn-ake?
Syn-ake is a topical anti-aging treatment….(that) is marketed as an alternative to Botox injections and other types of synthetic treatments that are formulated to get rid of wrinkles, crow’s feet, and other signs of aging. This ingredient, which is used in several different products that are designed to fight aging, is a synthetic form of snake venom. Syn-ake replicates the effects of a peptide that is known as Waglerin 1, which is a component of the venom found in the Temple Viper, a poisonous snake native to southeast Asia.

Syn-ake is designed to work much like Botox, which reduces muscular contractions in the face and reduces cell movement; thereby keeping the skin smooth. The concept behind Syn-ake is that since snake venom causes muscular paralysis, a synthetic derivative of the venom would work to temporarily deaden the muscles in the face to prevent the formation or deepening of wrinkles.’  (source)

BUT

‘experts wonder whether the topical formulations penetrate deeply enough to effectively inhibit muscle contraction. After all, Botox is injected for a reason — to deliver the compound directly into muscle tissue.

“Is the active ingredient really absorbed into the skin like Botox?” asks dermatologist Dr. Vermen Verallo-Rowell. “The action may just be as a good moisturizer, which does soften wrinkles.”

“Skin is programmed to keep proteins out,” adds Dr. Leslie Baumann, author of “The Skin Type Solution.” And the chemical must travel through several layers of skin and subcutaneous fat to reach and penetrate the muscle.’  (source)

hmmmm…..

I have been using this as my night essence since I received it and it was just ok. No obvious results (I didn’t really notice any improved firmness, suppleness or radiance) but I had no nasty reactions. It did have a bit of a strong perfume smell though, which put me off somewhat, luckily it did not last long.

I spent some time trying to track down the product for price / ingredients but it looks like it has been discontinued. The Seatree website seems to be concentrating on more natural plant based ingredients and some rather funky new packaging artwork. They do still have the Syn-ake hydrogel mask but that looks like it for the range.

‘(a) Natural brand, which was born in the Mangrove forest, gives you beautiful and intact skin from Mother Nature. Seatree embodies Sea and Forest, made of natural and pure ingredients, makes women’s skin healthy and full of vitality, providing skin support’

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Making the Mask!

I had actually done this once before and so decided to try it again and attempt to take pictures of the process. The mask pellets are incredibly hard, densely packed little white discs. They are a little like a tiny Draught piece (Checkers for the Americans).

One thing I must point out is that it takes a LOT of essence to get this to swell and work properly.  No wonder masks can be so expensive .. although I very much doubt that they are made by trying to unfurl tightly compressed little pellets from hell 🙂

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Either I am too impatient or I didn’t use enough essence either time but this little nugget was extremely difficult to unravel.  I placed it in a dish and liberally spewed it with essence.

Warning: this picture could look a little dodgy but I promise, that IS the Syn-ake Essence … ahem.

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I hate waiting, so I started trying to unpick it pretty much straight away.

This is the beginning of the unfurling (i.e. after I had been picking at it for a few minutes and sighing a lot)

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It looks like a little flower! I’m thinking this type of course:

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This went on for a while – me cursing and trying to unravel it without ripping (unsuccessfully – both times) and this is the end result, which is not as bad as it could have been imo. This is obviously after it had been on my face 🙂

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I think you can sense the look of frustration that imprinted onto it. This is what it is meant to look like:

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Conclusion

Once on the face the mask feels like any other, albeit a little less snug and well fitting.  It’s a good way to get more intensive benefits from your product because the mask sheet allows it to stay moist and have direct contact with the skin for a longer period of time, like any sheet mask. Again, I didn’t note any particular effects from this essence apart from a bit of hydration but it was a useful one to experiment with and to utilise for this post!

Obviously, the whole DIY thing could be just too much hassle especially since you can get decent sheet masks at pretty good prices but if you like to experiment with DIY skin care, this might appeal to you.

Some notes:

1. It may have been easier with a more liquid substance rather than one that is thicker in texture like this.

2. Or with some of the thicker substances it may be advisable to put it on your face first, then cover with a slightly damp mask (soaked in toner or galactomyces essence perhaps).

3. It would be a good idea to chill the essence or whatever you are using in the fridge before hand for that extra refreshing sensation.

I will have to experiment further (with the 18 I have left!) and report back. I have an old book with DIY Skin care recipes somewhere that I will have to root out but some of the ideas I think look good are:

FOR DRY SKIN: 
Mix coconut water with five drops of coconut oil and half a teaspoon of honey (manuka preferably). Coconut is hydrating and honey helps lock in the moisture.

FOR SENSITIVE SKIN: 
Mix a tablespoon of aloe vera gel with a couple drops of olive oil and a chilled cup of organic green tea. The aloe vera and olive oil are good for dryness, while the green tea soothes the skin and calms redness.

FOR ACNE-PRONE SKIN:
Mix ¼ cup of witch hazel, ¾ cups of water, and a teaspoon of aloe vera gel. Witch hazel removes excess oil from the skin and minimizes pores and the aloe vera soothes irritation and redness.

It might also be nice to add a couple drops of skin friendly essential oils such as Tea Tree (great for oily and acne prone skin), Lavender (soothing), Neem (anti bacterial and good for acne prone skin) and Lemon (brightening and pigmentation).

Some other kitchen friendly ingredients that would be fun to try out:

– yogurt
– green tea powder (made up)
– pureed banana and milk
– milk and honey
– camomile tea
– peppermint tea (etc)
– egg
– lemon juice
– avocado
– apple cider vinegar

Maybe not ham though….

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This whole post has gone a bit creepy again …..first suspicious looking white substances and the death rose (rosa calvaria) and now ham face!

To end on a much more pleasant note, I present some bunny babies from a very wonderful rescue that is close to my heart – Save a Bunny (based in the San Francisco Bay Area, California).  These dinky little munchkins will be available to adopt in the upcoming months for those in the area.  For everyone else, there are many wonderful rescues all over the world who would love to hear from you.  (The bun at the back is demonstrating what I should be doing right at this moment!)

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Save a bunny babies(source)

Let me know what you think (of the post not the bunnies, although that is brilliant too!), any ideas you have for some recipes / products that might work? I am hoping to do a giveaway of some fun stuff soon and may get a packet of these to include, let me know if you would like that?

Cheers, C xx

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Memebox – Skin Factory Value Set

This is going to be a pretty short one as Memebox has removed all trace of this box from their website and I (rather stupidly) did not save the information beforehand!   I ordered this at the same time as the Detox & Renew, Elizavecca set and Secret Key Set – just before Meme broke up with the world. I got this box essentially for one product but the rest aren’t bad either! The box cost $37 shipped (£24 approx) and I have no idea what the Memevalue was for the contents but I will link to places to buy the products at undoubtedly cheaper prices than that Memevalue anyway. $24 is very good value though considering the usual online price of the main item.

The Box

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The Brand

Skinfactory is a trusted Korean Brand which started as a cosmetics brand founded by a group of medical specialists (from Seoul National University) to offer pure & natural skincare products which emphasize the well-being & balance of the skin for both man & woman of all skin types.

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Their products include cleanser, toner, essence, serum and special cellulose cotton facial masks  Additionally, all Skinfactory products have completed clinical testing through the Hushu Clinic, with which they collaborate.  Hushu is a well-known International Dermatology Clinic.  All their products are fragrance-free, pigment-free, preservative-free, alcohol-free and mineral oil-free and are dermatologist tested.   They are a socially responsible company, committed to limiting the impact of its actions and products on the environment and only the best ingredients from nature are used to make their products. 

The company is owned by Beauty Finest, which also looks after Skin Watchers, Chamos Acaci, Yadah Korea (which I really like – see Detox and Renew review) and Hermippe. The brand also has it’s own website with content in English at www.skinfactorys.kr

The Contents

1. NengJangGo 7 Seconds Morning Mask
Full Size Product: 150g / 20 ea (38,000 won retail / £22.15)
Ready your skin before makeup in the morning with this 7 Seconds Morning Sheet which works as a toner, a lotion, and an essence all in one! What’s more, a quick 7 second wipe with this dual facial sheet will give you all the effects of a facial massage, an anti-wrinkle serum, and a dead skin cell remover.
How to use: After washing your face, insert two fingers inside the dual sheet and gently massage your face for 7 seconds with the dotted side of the pad. Then, with the other softer side of the pad, pat it on for another seven seconds for essence absorption.

Tip: Use this before special occasions or any time when you have to look your best. Use the included tweezers to pick up the pads. If you don’t have enough time to apply makeup, just use this sheet and apply BB cream to be ready for your day!

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Ingredients: (disclaimer: there are full ingredients in English on the package but they are so tiny I couldn’t even read them with a magnifying glass!, so this is just a list of the most pertinent, followed by a screen grab of the full list from Wishtrend) Cos 5 Complex (Patent Ingredient), Skinpia 10 (Patent Ingredient), Niacinamide, Adenosine, Cellplus+, Morinda Citrifolia Fruit Extract (Noni), Echinacea Extract, Nasturtium Officinale Extract, Galactomyces Fermentation Filtrate, Jasmine Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Nasturtium Officinale Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract (Green Tea), Red Wine Extract, Papaya Extract, White Rose, Freesia, Iris, Lily, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Snail Slime Filtrate, Grape Extract and Orange Extract. This product is free from: Parabens, Ethanol, Silicon, Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Phenoxy Ethanol, Mineral Oil, BHT, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Talc and Triethanolamine.

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My Thoughts

This definitely appeals to my inherently lazy side! I am saving these for the summer when I won’t feel like layering many products and hopefully having much more fun outdoorsy things to do, it will also save time in the morning. They are also meant to be stored in the fridge and at the moment that may result in the damn thing freezing to my face if I tried to use them in my bedroom first thing in the morning! This is my usual morning routine:

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Yep, I like sleep! I would hibernate if I could….. The other reason that I wanted to try these is that they have become a Memebox Addicts holy grail (oh no, not that again!).

They were in a previous mask box and a LOT of people like these very much, they have shown excellent results with many different people (presumably with differing skin types) and when a product gains that sort of a following I would be pretty stupid not to want to try it. They have been comments on how wonderful their skin looks after using, that their skin looks ‘brighter, firmer and more moisturised’, that they would ‘buy them again and again’, that it acts like a primer and it makes makeup go on much easier and that the speed of use is a major plus point (yes, I put opinions in my spreadsheet wishlist – I am a beauty nerd!).

The sheets come in a plastic jar with a plastic lid and the inside is reminiscent of a tuna or coke can with a metallic pull tab. There are tweezers provided to pick up the little sheets of heaven (and that can apparently be reused as, well, tweezers afterwards). The sheets themselves are round and have a pocket where you insert your fingers so that you can use them as a massaging pad, without getting your fingers all in the goodness on the surface. The pads have different surfaces on either side; a dotted side for exfoliation and a smoother side for patting the remaining essence in afterwards. There is an instruction leaflet inside showing the correct method of massage to stimulate your ‘blood spots’, as specified in Korean Traditional Medicine. Similar concept to acupressure I would think.

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With the known results and my built in laziness these pads are a winner. They are more expensive than a lot of the other Korean products I have been using (especially for only 20 uses)  but that may be due to the very long and impressive ingredients list and to be honest, I don’t mind paying a bit more if it is something I know will work. Can’t wait to try them and I will report back when I do! The company also makes a version of these pads for men (Homme) and a Night time version (Platinum Rose Wine). These cost $20.23 from Wishtrend, not including shipping (£13.10 approx), which isn’t too bad. They also take 15% off of you buy this with one of the other two.

2. 7 seconds Touch Fit Lip Tatoo Pack – No 02 Jewellery Pink
Full Size Product: 25ml (15,000 Won / £8.75 approx)
The innovative, revolutionising 7 Seconds Touch Fit Lip Tattoo pack is here to perfect and plump up your lips. Included in the pack are the 7 Seconds Touch Fit Lip Tattoo and the 7 Seconds Speed White Cream to maximise the effects of each product for that flawless look that’s sure to flaunt your lips and turn heads.
Made with all natural ingredients with no irritants, hydrate, nourish and colour with the Lip Tattoo Pack! The Fit Lip Tattoo will add a touch of natural long lasting colour that’ll last up to 12 hours allowing you to seize the day in style.

How to use: 1. Apply Touchfit along the lipline and fill in colour for plumping lips, 2. Let the Touchfit on your lips dry for about 5-10 minutes, avoiding touching the lips or rubbing them together, 3. When the product gets dry, take it off slowly from the lip ends inwards, 4. After the colour of Touchfit sits well on lips, finish with lipgloss or lipbalm for moister lips.

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Ingredients: Water, Polyvinyl Alcohol, Alcohol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Butylene Glycol, Peat Water, Pentylene Glycol, Cl17200, Fragrance, Royal Jelly Extract, Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Water, Carica Papaya (Papaya) Fruit Extract, Torreya Nucifera Extract, Cornus Kousa Extract, Rosa Multiflora Fruit Extract, Chloranthus Glaber Extract, Musa Basjoo Extract, Cl 45410:1, Allantoin, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Sea Water, Saccharomyces/Piatinum Ferment, Chrysanthellum Indicum Extract, Rheum Palmatum Root/Stalk Extract, Asarum Sieboldi Root Extract, Larix Sibirica Wood Extract, Quercus Mongolia Leaf Extract, Persicaria Hydropiper Extract, Illicium Verum (Anise) Fruit Extract, Corydalis Turtschaninovii Root Extract, Coptis Japonica Root Extract, Machilus Thunbergii Bark Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate.

My Thoughts

This is a LOT of fun! There was a similar product by a different brand called Skinaz in a box that I missed last year and I really wanted to get my hands on one to try. When I saw that the 7 Second Sheets came with one of these it really made my mind up. I wasn’t too sure about the colour but i thought, at least I can try the concept and see if it works for me. Here are some swatches (please excuse the quality of photographs, I was finding it very difficult to focus whilst holding the camera in the other hand!):

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It is pretty subtle and a nice cool toned pink colour. I haven’t got round to trying this on my actual lips yet as I am usually in a rush in the morning and haven’t really got the time to be waiting 10 minutes for my lips to dry… in actuality, I could… but that would mean getting out of bed earlier and I refer you to the cartoon above! I will have a go soon though and I plan to try the Secret Key Lipstick over the top for moisture since they are so similar in tone. Here is another couple of peoples lips for your delectation:

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This shade of the 7 Seconds Touch Fit Lip Tattoo and and two others (Sexy Pink and Vita Fruits Peach) are available at Wishtrend for $17.90, plus shipping (approx £11.60).

3. Silk Cellulose Mask Sheets x 7
Full Size Product: 30ml (3000 won / £1.75 approx)

One each of:  

– Aqua Skin in Ampoule Mask
– E.G.F Moisturetox Ampoule Mask

– Vega Vita Plex Ampoule Mask

– Vega Collagen Ampoule Mask

– Solution A-Plus Ampoule Mask

– Daily UV Care Ampoule Mask

– I 2. P. L White Mela-X Ampoule Mask

How to use: 1. After washing, apply your usual toner,  2. Then cut along the first dotted line to access essence. Apply the essence on your face. If there is extra, you can apply the essence on your neck, arms and so forth, 3. Cut along the second dotted line and remove the mask sheet, Then spread the mask sheet evenly on your face, 4. Relax for 30 minutes then remove the sheet. Softly massage your face to make the remaining ingredients absorb entirely. It is recommended that you repeat the process 2-3 times a week for best results.

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Aqua Skin in Ampoule Mask
 

SKINFACTORY’s Aqua Skin in Ampoule Mask is the best hydrating facial mask for your dry skin. Ingredients like seawater, tocopheryl acetate, sweet almond oil, and sodium work together to give your skin maximum moisture ! With 30 ml of ampoule solution for each silk cellulose sheet mask (the greatest amount in the Korean market), this hydrating facial mask is the best bang for your buck ! All it takes is just 20 minutes to give your skin the radiance and moisture that it deserves and desires !

Aqua Skin In was developed by medical specialists from MIRROR dermatology clinic. This is a cosmeceutical mask and it has completed clinic testing. With it’s long nature, cotton fibres, the silky cellulose mask provides excellent adhesion for optimal effect.

With great ingredients !This hydrating facial mask is packed with great ingredients that aim to moisturize and soothe your skin !

  • Seawater Moisturizing and soothing.
  • Tocopheryl acetate Conditioning and moisturizing.
  • Sweet almond oil Moisturizing.
  • Sodium hyaluronate Moisturizing and strengthening.

This hydrating facial mask is perfect for :

  • People who want to restore lost moisture in their skin.
  • People who have very dry skin.
  • People who feel their skin dried out due to environmental changes.
  • People who want healthy, moisturized skin.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycereth-26, Propylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Betaine, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Allantoin, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Disodium EDTA, Sea Water, Tocopheryl Acetate, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond Oil), Fragrance, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrolyzed Collagen.

E.G.F Moisturetox Ampoule Mask

The Skin Factory’s Ampoule Mask is a good facial mask which regains the lost skin flexibility. 53 amino acid proteins accelerate skin conditioning. The skin Factory’s ampoule mask provides 20% more moisture to Your skin.
It adds more elasticity and strengthens your dry and aged skin.

  • Human Oligo Peptide-1 conditions your skin.
  • Carbomer strengthens skin barriers.
  • Centella Asiatica accelerates skin elasticity.

These ingredients firm and lift the skin.

Facial mask is the best, if you :

  • Want to add more elasticity to your skin.
  • Want to condition your skin.
  • Want to strengthen the skin barriers.
  • Want a mask for aging skin.
  • want to exfoliate skin cells.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycereth-26, Propylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Betaine, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Betaine,Rosa Centafolia Flower Water, Centella Asiatica Extract, Allantoin, Carbomer, Triethanolamine,  Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate,  Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan), Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Disodium EDTA, Tocopheryl Acetate, Fragrance, rh-Oligopeptide-1, Ethoxydiglycol, Phenoxyethanol.


Vega Vita Plex Ampoule Mask

Best ampoule mask to brighten your skin !Skin Factory supplies essential vitamins to your face. An ampoule mask gives a silky sensation.

Natural Bark Sap provides intensive moisturizing and improves the skin. The Japanese Cellulose mask stays better than other masks. Vega Vitaplex Ampoule Mask gives essential vitamins to dull skin.

  • Tocopheryl acetate (Vitamin E derivative) provides skin moisturizing and conditioning.
  • Panthenol (Vitamin B derivative) strengthens the skin barrier.
  • Green tea seed oil (Vitamin A, B2, C) calms the skin and controls the sebum.
  • Ascorbyl glucoside provides clearer and brighter skin.

Ampoule Mask is perfect for you :

  • If you want to know how to lighten skin.
  • If you want a clear skin.
  • If you want a mask free from paraben.
  • If you want to regain the lost moisture.
  • If you want a highest selling product in Korea.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycereth-26, Propylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Betaine, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil,  Carbomer, Triethanolamine,  Allantoin, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate,  Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Disodium EDTA, Tocopheryl Acetate, Panthenol, Camellia Sinensis Seed Oil, Fragrance, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Sodium Hyaluronate.

Vega Collagen Ampoule Mask  

Vega Collagen Ampoule Mask increases moisture to your skin. It contains hydrolyzed elastic to provide skin conditioning and refines the skin glows.

Collagen face mask for elastic skin. Patented hydro gel facial mask to get moisturized skin

  • Hydrolyzed elastic provides skin conditioning.
  • Phellinus linnets extract makes skin smooth.

This face mask for sensitive skin is perfect

  • If you want more flexible skin.
  • If you want smooth and a sensational face mask.
  • If you want to add moisture to your skin.
  • If you are looking for easy to use facial mask.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Triethanolamine,  Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Disodium EDTA, Hydrolyzed Elastin, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate,  Fragrance.

Solution A-Plus Ampoule Mask  

The Skin Factory provides an aging facial mask which increases the gloss and shine on your skin.
It alleviates the skin wrinkles and delivers younger and brighter skin. Facial mask to calm rough and bumpy skinSkin Factory’s face mask for sensitive skin smooths and calms the trouble skin. It cleans and moisturizes the skin with key ingredients.

High moisture face mask ! Patented hydro gel facial mask to get lucid skin.

  • Coconut oil and Argan Oil softens and brightens your skin.
  • Chamomile extract enhances skin calming.
  • Castor Oil adds moisture to troubled skin.

This face mask for sensitive skin is perfect

  • If you want brighter skin.
  • If you want clean skin.
  • If you want to calm rough and bumpy skin.
  • If you are looking for easy to use facial mask.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, Alcohol, Centella Asiatica Extract, 1,2-Hexanediol, Houttuynia Cordata Extract, Chamomila Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Betaine, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Allantoin, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance, Triclosan, Salicylic Acid, Phenoxyethanol.


Daily UV Care Ampoule Mask
 

SKINFACTORY’s Daily UV Care Ampoule Mask is the best facial mask for UV care.
This is the perfect way to end a long day under the sun, with ingredients like cucumber and aloe extracts to soothe your tired skin, and honey and caviar extracts replenish lost nutrients !

This facial mask for UV care is packed with great ingredients that aim to calm, soothe, moisturize and nourish your skin !

  • Aloe vera & cucumber extracts moisturize and calming effects.
  • Witch hazel & chamomile calming effects.
  • Mallow extracts calming effects.
  • Caviar extracts nourishing effects.
  • Peppermint oil refreshing effects.
  • Red clover extracts calming effects.

This facial mask for UV care is perfect for :

  • People who have been outdoors for a long period of time.
  • People who have been exposed to an extended amount of sun.
  • People who have irritated skin due to sun exposure.
  • People who want to restore the moisture and nutrition lost from sun exposure.

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Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol,  1,2-Hexanediol, Betaine, Alcohol, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Carbomer, Arginine, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Xanthan Gum, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Sodium Polyacrylate, Disodium EDTA, Hyaluronic Acid, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Piper Methysticum Leaf / Root / Stem Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Chamomila Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Honey Extract, Caviar Extract, Ricinus communis (Castor Seed) Oil, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Propylene Glycol, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Extract, Medicago Sativa (Alfalfa) Extract, Trifolium Pratense (Clover) Leaf Extract, Hordeum Vulgare Extract, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Leaf Extract, Primula Vulgaris Extract, Alchemilla Vulgaris Leaf Extract, Veronica Officinalis Extract, Melissa Officinalis Leaf Extract, Achilea Millefolium Extract.

I 2. P. L White Mela-X Ampoule Mask

The Skin Factory provides a whitening facial mask which delivers brighter skin. The key ingredients add moisture to your dark and dull skin. The skin Factory’s whitening facial mask transforms dull and dark skin into brighter skin. It moisturizes and conditions the skin with Rose Water.

  • I2.P.L provides intense perfection light for skin whitening.
  • Rosewater helps in skin conditions.
  • Allantoin adds moisture to dull skin.
  • Mulberry Root Extract provides skin care.

This Facial Mask is the best, if you :

  • Are looking for a whitening facial mask.
  • Want to condition your skin.
  • Are looking for the perfect mask which regains the lost moisture as well.
  • Wants energetic moisture which recharges your skin.

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Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycereth-26, Propylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol,  PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Betaine, Triethanolamine, Carbomer, Aspalathus Linearis Extract, Allantoin, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan), Rosa Centifolia Flower Water,  Morus Alba Bark Extract, Arbutin, Disodium EDTA, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Tocopheryl Acetate, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ester Dimethyl Silane, Fragrance.

I will review these in more depth as I use them but I must say that they look pretty impressive and a bit different to the usual sheet masks that I have been using. I’m not sure whether the essence is in a separate pocket like some others that I have seen (it doesn’t seem like it to me). It looks like you just access the essence that is always remaining in the pouch first, then put the mask on top.

I’m sure the blurb on the Memebox website said something about using one a day in a specific order but since I no longer have access to that information I will try and see what other info I can find and update this as soon as I can. We shall see! These are also all available at Wishtrend and are $4.00 each (approx £2.60). There are also other versions available – a Real Honey Moisturising Ampoule Mask, a Volcanic Ash Black 3D Ampoule Mask (that one sounds interesting!), a Real Shiny Pearl Ampoule Mask and a Silky Dream Cream Sheet Mask.

Conclusion

This box is a bit of a weird one. It seems a bit sparse and it mainly centred around the HG item that everyone already knows about. It seems like they just threw in a few other bits to make up the difference – but, to be honest, when those other bits are some great looking sheet masks and a fun lip tint then that is not a problem. It is definitely my least favorite of the three Value sets that I got in that order but that may change as and when I use the items. I also ordered a Sally’s Box Mask Value Set, just after the closure and I will be doing that next along with the promised MaskGenie pouches. Did you get this box? What do you think about it?

Till next time 😉
Charlotte x

Memebox – Elizavecca Skincare Set Season 2

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As well as mystery, naked and theme boxes (is it just me or does that sound like the beginnings of a spectacular party??),  Memebox more recently began to curate ‘Value’ sets. These sets were based around one brand (a bit like the old Brand boxes) and were ‘naked’, that is to say that the contents were exposed at the very start, as in the screen grab above. This lot of goodies would set you back $43 (£28 approx) with free shipping (although that had been reduced and otherwise changed at times so you needed to keep your eye on it). That is 4 items for a Memevalue of $118 (£76.80 approx).

I ordered this along with some other ‘Value’ sets and the Detox & Renew box at the end of January just before the closure announcement was made. I have only managed to try one product so far but I am extremely happy with this box and honestly wish I had got more than one. Let’s see why:

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4 lovely items! As you may have guessed they are all from the brand ELIZAVECCA.  I really, really like this brand. I have been using their Milky Piggy Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask for a good few months now and have purchased quite a few (ahem ….4) backups from the Meme Shop and also from complete fools who have allowed me to swap or buy one from them on Facebook (not really, everyone likes different things!)

The Brand

I can’t find out too much about the brand and it’s general philosophy as unfortunately I don’t read Korean but the first thing that struck me about Elizavecca was the wonderful packaging and general sense of whimsy in the graphics on said packaging. Their trademarks are an incredibly cute pig and a wonderfully cool rabbit (never would have guessed I’d like that, eh?). Whilst the bunny stays effortlessly hip and the same on all the packaging, the little piggy changes his/her dress and circumstances dependent on what the product he is advertising is. This is the header from their website showing the bun and the plain pig, about to go do his thing with all their wonderful products:

web(Source)

There have been a number of the products in boxes over the last year, as well as the Bubble pack, I also have the Green Piggy Collagen Jella Pack pig mask to try (of which I got a very similar mask in the Winter Essentials Mask box but by a different brand). They seem to have been one of Memebox’s stronger brand partnerships and if the Korean warehouse had continued I’m sure we would have continued to see more of their products popping up in boxes.

Even though the website above is in Korean, you can see that there is a vast range that would be fascinating to try. I particularly like the look of the Milky Wear Salicyl Cream (an exfoliating salicylic acid cream), which looks like it would work wonders on all those icky blackheads and open pores; the Vitamin C 21% Ample Mask (a high concentration Vit C cream mask), this looks so sunny, juicy and healthy – the bunny sunglasses are needed with this one; the Milky Piggy Glutinous Mask (a snail 80% ampoule mask), anything snail is good by me and this has anti wrinkle and whitening functions; and many more (there is a Mayu horse oil cream, hydrogel and fancy sheet masks (my absolute favorites),  pore masks and various serums and essences. I want to try the whole range! I foresee some Tester Korea requests in my future! There are various websites that already stock some of these items and I will list those at the end of the post.

The box

Let’s start with the absolute winner. (Retail prices given are from the Elizavecca website as Meme did not provide a Memevalue for the individual products).

1. Water Coating Aqua Brightening Mask
Full Size Product: 100ml (38,000 Won / £22.40 approx)
Known as the “flight attendant” mask , this facial treatment is perfect for those that are experiencing dull, weather skin due to constant switching between central heating and harsh winds. This treatment uses the extreme hydration and anti-ageing active technologies as it moisturises, restores, replenishes and brightens the skin. Active collagen boosts and locks in moisture for a dewy and youthful result while baobab water and bamboo water brightens the complexion and leaves skin with an instant silky, soft and supple feel. This miracle facial treatment energises the skin, giving you a healthy looking, glowing complexion.

How to use: On cleansed skin, evenly apply the treatment all over the skin. Leave on for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse.

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Ingredients: in Korean

My Thoughts

Although this product was well sealed when it arrived I think that the changes in temperatures or pressure made the cream expand as when I took off the cellophane wrapping on the pot it was very oily inside and all around the top of the jar and opening, as if it had separated a bit and some product had squeezed out under the wrap. This wasn’t a problem and probably hardly any was lost – just a heads up if you are ordering one that ships from Korea internationally. I just wiped it down and rubbed the excess on my hands.

This particular piggy graphic is a deep sea scuba diver with his helmet filled with water (presumably to represent the protective coating layer of hydration that this product provides).
He is standing next to some buried treasure ……and since there are bubbles coming out of it I going to presume that he has found a wondrous stash of the bubble clay mask! This mask itself smells lightly floral (but not too much for me and I am fairly sensitive to strong floral scents …as in I detest them!) and is a watery gel cream, that is marvellously cooling and refreshing on the skin. It comes with a little spatula in the protective lid.

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I have used it twice so far both times after using the Bubble Clay Mask to take off my make up (having already removed my eye make up).  I have then put a generous layer of this all over and enjoyed. The first time I fell asleep (a common occurrence and it did no harm) but both times I left it on much much than the allotted 15-20 minutes. It hasn’t even really started to absorb by then to be honest.  It could even be used as a sleep pack but I think that the consistency is such that it would not penetrate a moisturising cream beneath it very well.

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When I finally washed it off (after it had totally absorbed)  my skin felt so soft and silky, almost like satin, velvety …. an entire haberdashery in fact!
I followed it up with my usual night time routine from serum onwards and that seemed to work fine. The next day my skin looked rested, glowing, bright and even in tone. I look forward to further uses and will definitely replace this when I have used a bit more (I need back ups to match my bubble mask stash!!). It would be interesting to try the other masks / creams in the range and compare the effects.

2. 100% Galactomyces Essence
Full Size Product: 50ml (19,000 Won / £11.10 approx)

This 100% Galactomyces infused ampoule instantly revives dull skin and provides intense hydrating and skin repairing benefits to the skin. One use softens and evens the skin texture to give a natural glow and youthful radiance.

How to use: Using the spoid, apply to clean skin and massage. Use as a substitute for serums and essences. Mix with moisturisers and creams for maximum effects of both the ampoule and moisturisers / cream.

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Ingredients: in Korean ….presumably 100% Galactomyces 🙂

My Thoughts

I had never really considered the word ‘spoid’ before discovering Korean skincare.  I have no idea whether it is used in the West for the same purpose. In fact it isn’t actually a word, at least not one that any dictionary (including the urban one which has altogether another meaning for it) would recognise. It seems to be solely used in the skincare and medical fields.

I still prefer ‘sucky thing’, or maybe ‘pipette’ if I have to be serious (which is never…).

So, What are Galactomyces?

glactonew100sg(Source)

And in plain English (not being too cheeky – I can’t read Korean at all so they are doing far better than me!),  Galactomyces ferment filtrate is a kind of fungi or yeast (also sometimes known as Leaven) and is an offshoot of the fermentation process when making alcoholic beverages (yum!).
The people making the alcohol discovered that they had very smooth, young looking hands after working with the product.  It was then discovered to be very rich in vitamins, minerals and amino acids under further study.

It is classified as a humectant (which is a hygroscopic substance used to keep things moist; it is the opposite of a desiccant. Thanks wiki).

The effects and benefits include:

  • Increased moisture and hydration to skin for a long period of time
  • Absorbs deeply and quickly into skin
  • Helps control our skin’s PH balance
  • Brightens skin
  • Creates clear and vibrant skin
  • Effective for ageing skin; makes skin elastic
  • Naturally remove dead skin cells, resulting in softer, smoother, glossier skin
  • Relieves and calms skin irritation and stress
  • Prevent and improve skin damage
  • Provides vitality to fatigued skin
  • It has been proven in studies that that ‘GFF-containing moisturizers help protect the skin against damage…. such as due to dryness or environmental stress …..and also having antioxidant effects.’

(Partial Source: 574. EFFECTS OF GALACTOMYCES FERMENT FILTRATE ON EPIDERMAL BARRIER MARKER CASPASE-14 IN HUMAN SKIN CELLS. Hattori, K., Date, A., Nakajima, A., Ishida, K., Yan, X., Yoshii, T., Tamura, H. Department of Hygienic Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, Keio University, Tokyo, Japan. P&G Beauty & Grooming, Kobe, Japan. 68th Annual Meeting of Amer. Acad. of Derm., Miami, FL, March 2010.)

It also does not contain any nasties:

glactonew2(Source)

So if anyone knows any non-irritating and available children …………nope, that even sounds wrong in my head!

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This is 100% Galactomyces, as is the one by the brand Purebess that I have been using since before Christmas.
I believe that some other well known brands contain much less – even very well known and expensive ones.  I did see one that claimed ‘even more than 100%’!! but I think that may have been a fib.  I also have a version by Secret Key to try (that came in another value set) and I will maybe get some more as well to do a thorough comparison.

The blurb says to ‘Use as a substitute for serums and essences’, but I must admit that I use the Purebess version as one in a multitude of steps (the K Beauty routine, to be posted about soon).
I have been using it as a second toner of sorts.  I cleanse (sometimes twice), apply a more stringent toner on a cotton pad and then pat this into my skin until absorbed and then continue on with my essence, serum and moisturiser.  I have oily skin ….this has not been too much for it.  Probably best to play around and see what works best for you.

Since starting using a Galactomyces product my skin has vastly improved, mainly in tone and clarity. I look more alive and vibrant, refined.  Whether it is this, another product that I have been using or (most likely) a combination of factors, I don’t know, but it will be very interesting to experiment with different brands to see if I notice a difference …..watch this space!

3. Hyaluronic Acid Serum 100%
Full Size Product: 150ml (38,000 Won / £22.10 approx)
This hyaluronic serum rapidly rescues skin from the visible signs of ageing and replenished youthful volume from the inside out and stimulates the skin’s natural production of hyaluronic acid for lasting results, and protects the skin from environmental damage. Use to smooth away facial wrinkles and lines, correct ageing skin, restore skin suppleness, and prevent the formation of new lines and wrinkles.

How to use: Apply to clean dry face after cleansing. Take a dime sized amount and massage into the skin. Pat gently until fully absorbed.

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Ingredients:
also in Korean, again presumably 100% Hyaluronic Acid

My Thoughts

This is one damn huge bottle!! It is really heavy, brushed glass with a shiny silver lid and no sign of the piggy! Bunny makes a small appearance on the logo. I don’t think I have ever seen a serum at this size before, this will take a while to use up! As I have other serums open at the moment I will not be opening this but the consistency seems fairly watery as far as I can tell, which is perfect to use after my essence and before a thicker consistency ampoule, lotion or cream.

So, What is Hyaluronic Acid?

Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a gel-like water holding molecule that is the space filler and cushioning agent in all mammals.  HA cushions joints, nerves, hydrates skin and hair, and fills the eye.  Although originally discovered in 1934 by Karl Meyer, HA gained momentum only after a visit by a reporter to a Japanese village of Yuzuri Hara to find out why both men and women in their 80’s and 90’s had smooth wrinkle free skin, flexible joints, full heads of hair and activity levels that defied their age.  This was eventually found to be related to oestrogen-like molecules in their diet from soya and tofu, which sent signals to the cells to make more hyaluronic acid.

Our bodies roughly contain 15 grams of HA and it is found in virtually every part of the body.  With such a widespread occurrence, it is logical that HA also has multiple functions.   Scientific studies have shown that HA improves skin hydration, stimulates production of collagen in skin, works as an antioxidant and free radical scavenger, maintains skin elasticity, cushions joints and nerve tissues, has an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activity and maintains the fluid in the eye tissues, which may help to protect against numerous possible eye concerns.

Decreasing levels of hyaluronic acid are known to accompany the ageing process and it is estimated that by the time we reach our mid-40’s, the synthesis of HA is roughly half that required by the body.

The benefits specifically for the skin are:

  • Hyaluronic acid helps to retain over a 1000 times its weight in water within the cells of skin, making it an excellent moisturiser
  • Boosts skins moisture content and prevents moisture loss
  • This results in increased smoothness, softening and decreased wrinkles
  • It also has an ability to remove waste matter from cells including those where there is little blood circulation
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Hyaluronic acid is considered equally important, if not more important, than Collagen for the skin
  • Anti ageing, elimination of skin imperfections and wrinkles

(Sources: Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, July 2014, pages 177–184; The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, March 2014, pages 18–26 and May 2014, pages 150–180 and Victoria Health).

I can’t wait to have a go with this and hopefully will write about it then.

4. Blackhead Solution 3 Step
Full Size Product: Sachet (3,500 Won / £2 approx)
This powerful, yet gentle, 3 step nose clearing kit provides the A-Z in achieving a spick and span nose. Step 1 instantly removes blackheads and unclogs pores, Step 2 extracts all pore cloggers and Step 3 tightens, soothes and cleanses the pores. Complete with a dry patch and wet patch for anytime, anywhere use, this 3 step system features optimal pore purifying benefits for clear, healthy looking skin.

How to use: On clean skin, apply Step 1 to the nose. Then apply Step 2.  Use Step 3 last.

Those instructions are brought to you by the Kitty Chinchilla School of Technical Writing……

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Ingredients:
in Korean but main ones are Green Tea Extract, Lavender Extract, Aloe Vera Leaf Extract, Apple Extract, Lemon Extract, Lime Extract, Camomile Extract, Peppermint Extract, Grapefruit Extract.

My Thoughts

Well, that has made me a bit peckish! Those obviously aren’t the ingredients that are going to extract the nasties from your nose but in my experience all nose pore packs are much of a muchness anyway. The ones that I have usually used are 1 step – they stick to your nose, you pull them off and nasty stuff goes with it. I am under the impression with these that the first step softens the nasties, the second extracts them and the third tightens everything back up and soothes any redness.

I must comment on the graphics again – just look at that little evil piggy!! Torturing the poor little blackheads and making them cry! I love his wings and puffs of hellfire smoke (??)

I do have blackheads. Always have done as far as I can remember. I think I am much more aware of them than other people would be, as is always the case when it comes to your own imperfections (rightly perceived or otherwise). They do not, however, look as bad (or as even) as this:

blackhead 1(source)

I have tried many things over the years to rid myself of the buggers for once and for all but to no avail. I have promised a post on this very subject some time in the not too distant future after I have tried a few more things out in the world of K Beauty (where they are very very keen on blackhead extraction products). One final observation is this: the blurb says that ‘Complete with a dry patch and wet patch for anytime, anywhere use‘ …….so walking round the supermarket it is then!

Conclusion

I really love this box! (I think I’ve said that already). I will use every item in it, which is rare with Memeboxes. Everything that I have tried from Elizavecca, I really enjoy. They are good quality and great value for money. They do what they claim to do and that is everything in skincare … well, the whimsical graphics don’t hurt at all as well. I want to get my little mitts on more of their products and luckily they are more widely available than some other Korean brands that we have seen in Memeboxes.

Some places I have seen them are as follows:

Korea Depart – A few products. I haven’t used this store myself yet and apparently their shipping and packaging fees can be confusing but they have very good prices and I haven’t heard any bad reviews yet. I will try them soon and report back.

Tester Korea – Just the Jella Pack at the moment but TK has a great service where you can request any product and they get back to you super quick and let you know whether they can source it. The prices are usually full retail price if they do that though, which should be taken into account. I have ordered from them before with no problems.

Yes Style – Another one I haven’t used yet but they do have a few products at ok prices. Again I have heard of no major problems with skincare purchases on here.

Rose Rose Shop – They have quite a selection on here, as well as the opportunity to order in bulk. Do I need 10 Water Coating Masks?? They also have the Hydrogels that look epic! Again, I have not ordered from here before but have heard good things. They are also on ebay for those who prefer to shop there as Bring Bring Shop and Ruby Ruby Shop, both of which carried Elizavecca at time of posting.

Also on ebay:

Blueprint 21 – .has a selection of Elizavecca at time of posting.

Another shop called Honest Skin was selling Elizavecca at cut throat prices recently but I cannot in all good faith recommend them as there were some issues and some very very poor customer service. If that situation changes I will update this.

Any questions or requests, please let me know

Until the next one, Charlotte x

Memebox Detox & Renew

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Just before the awful announcement that Memebox was ceasing shipping to the majority of the world (discussed here) I ordered this very last box and a selection of value sets (coming up next) which arrived in super quick time (almost as if they couldn’t wait to be rid of us .. but probably because the Christmas backlog of parcels worldwide had finally cleared!)

I don’t really drink much anymore but the theme of Detox and Renew seemed perfect for a New Year treat and appealed most to me of all the boxes that they were selling at the time (of course if I had known that this would be it, I probably would have bought some of the others as well, especially a couple that I am a bit sore on missing out on now that I can’t have them! Bloody typical isn’t it?!)

Detox & Renew cost $29 + $6.99 shipping (£24.50 approx altogether) and has a memevalue of $159 (approx £103.25) for a total of 5 products. I miss them already!

This box DID have an info card! Hallelujah!!

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Since Meme (in their infinite wisdom) has removed all traces of their life before their self-inflicted extreme isolation (seriously do they know something about the upcoming zombie apocalypse??) and this includes all information about previous boxes and products, the info card is even more welcome for future reference purposes.

Box Description

The cold weather months leaves us susceptible to get lazy on out skincare routine! But, did you know? The constant switching back and forth between central heating and frigid winds causes excessive dead skin build up and increases the rate at which pore-dwellers multiply and grow!

While “the more the merrier” applies to most things in life, the growing party of pore dwellers is never fun, and is definitely not a beautiful sight! To help you in your skincare predicament, we bring you our newest Detox & Renew box, perfectly curated to eliminate the deepest skin toxins, remove dead skin cells, clarify congested pores, and alleviate damage from internal and external aggressors. Each product in this box is a one-step solution on it’s own, addressing everything from large pores and clogging to brightening cloudy skin!

Take this box, your one and only solution for lustrous and healthy skin, use after use!

–  Honestly, I never usually read these as they don’t often seem to have much to do with the contents of the box – a lot of marketing bumpf basically!

Contents

1. GU:AAM METHOD Black Pearl Protein (Conchiolin) 35 Whitening Serum 60ml
Full size product: 60ml ($30)

This light-weight skin renewing serum is formulated with bifida, AHA, and black pearl protein to help support the natural cell renewal and toxin elimination. Powerful black pearl proteins eliminate toxins and dead skin cells in the skin and enhance the skin’s natural healing cycle to detox and renew the skin’s surface. The results? Skin is decongested, skin pollutants are removed, and skin is left looking brighter and firmer, more radiant and youthful-looking. Free from chemical preservatives, artificial fragrance, artificial colours, mineral oils, silicon oils, sulfates, parabens, and EDTA.

How to use:

Immediately after cleansing, Apply the serum on face avoiding eye area. For the areas often have rough skins such as T-zone, oil-zone, and around lips, apply twice at a time with sufficient amount of serum.

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Ingredients: Bifida Ferment Filtrate, Hydrolyzed Conchiolin Protein, Pearl Extract, Lactobacilius / Pumpkin Fruit Ferment Filtrate, Niacinamide, Lactic Acid, Rosa Centifolia Flower Water, Arginine, Lactic Acid (yes, twice!), Sodium Hyaluronate, Sclerotium Gum, Adenosine, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Potassium Hydroxide, Xanthan Gum, Illicium Verum (Anise) Fruit Extract, 1,2-Hexanediol, Propanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate, Ceramide 3, Kyounin Yu, Aspergilus / Rice Ferment Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Carbonated Water, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Propolis Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate.

My Thoughts
This serum has a pretty great list of ingredients. On the box they specify content of 35% Pearl Conchiolin, 5% Bio-Pearl Extract, 3% AHA and 48% Bifida Fermentation. I will try and look further into what all that goodness means when I review this product separately.

I really like the packaging of this. It looks serious and that gives me hope that it will be effective. It has an effective sucky dropper (technical term!) for application purposes, that distributes a good amount of the product. I have been using a couple of items with a similar dropper (the Migabee Honey ampoule and the Pro You Oil) and I do enjoy this way of distribution but generally prefer a pump nozzle for convenience sake. The serum doesn’t smell of anything to me, which is great and has a lovely silky consistency that sinks in really well and does not leave a tacky sticky finish like some serums do. I will be including this in my routine as soon as I have finished my current serum.

I don’t know about you though but every time I read ‘Black Pearl’ (here and in the last post with the eye patches) I think of this:

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Any excuse for those lovely faces right?

I could not find this product for sale online in the usual places (I will keep looking) but they do have a website at http://www.guaam.com/
This product is listed as 24,600 Won on there (about £14.50) and could possibly be purchased through a shipping service like Avecko (for more information on Avecko and how to use their service please see the wonderful post by Fan B here).

2. YADAH Anti Trouble Bubble Cleanser 150ml
Full size product: 150ml ($27)

Anti Trouble Bubble Cleanser has a foaming formula that delivers gentle acne medication and improves skin’s appearance. It uses Salicylic Acid technology provides a long-acting acne treatment that continues to fight acne and blemishes while herbal extracts soothe and bind moisture to skin to optimise hydration and restore suppleness. The micro bubbles helps to detoxify the pores by clarifying ‘dir and’ oil build up (?? the translation is worse than usual on this one) in the pores. It also helps to control excess oil secretion to prevent breakouts. Approved by the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety administration, this cleanser is recommended as a step one cleanser in acne regimen.

How to use:
Massage a small amount over dampened face and neck. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.

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Ingredients: Water, TEA-Cocoyl Glumate, Glycerin, Salicylic Acid, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Perfume, Disodium EDTA, Aleo Barbadenisis Leaf Juice, Camellia Sinesis Leaf Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Extract

My Thoughts
Again this product has some pretty impressive claims. As pH testing of skincare is all the rage at the moment (it can be especially useful for those with sensitive skin I understand – something that luckily I don’t suffer from) it is pleasing that this cleanser states that it has a ‘Low acid similar to skin pH’. I don’t have a testing kit myself but I’m sure someone will have a go with this and I will keep an eye out.

Yadah has a website in English (here). The graphics are amazingly cute and they have a whole page dedicated to the ingredients used in their products (here)

Yadah 1(Source)

Yadah 2(Source)

There are no links to the clinical tests mentioned but I will see if I can find further information.

I have used quite a few products with ‘sally acid’ in the past and although I no longer have too many spots (only the occasional hormonal – the one advantage of advanced age), I still quite enjoy using products with it in as I am still extremely shiny and have blackheads and it is known as an effective exfoliant, anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory, as well as the anti-microbial spot properties. I have vastly too many cleansers in my stash at the moment but I may push this one forward in the line up so that I can use it during the summer when it’s properties will be best utilised.

I have not been able to find this to buy online but Tester Korea have added other Yadah products to their range on request so that may be worth a go.

3. MAYN Bio Mineraltox Mist 100ml
Full size product: 100ml ($44)

Skin looking dull, tired, lifeless? Makeup looking cakey and not setting in? Bio Mineraltox Mist refreshes, detoxifies, and rejuvenates the skin with detoxifying lemon balm, apple mint, royal jelly, and more and propriety “secret beads” made with ions and mineral water. The micro mist instantly purifies, brightens, clears, and invigorates the skin cells that have been damaged by external aggressors such as dust, alcohol consumption and more for clearer pores, and plumper skin cells, the perfect canvas for absorbing skincare products and makeup.

How to use:
After shaking the mist, hold 20cm away from the face, and gently mist. Reapply as necessary.

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DSCN0669The balls!

Ingredients: all in Korean I’m afraid – will try to find a translation.

My Thoughts
This mist strangely reminds me of the maracas that I inevitably was given to play at junior school concerts (it was either that or the triangle) as I was a singularly unmusical child.

If you are not sure what I mean, when you shake the mist it sounds a bit like these (without the bells!):

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I may have played with this for a few too many minutes…..I will be musical yet!

A few months ago the only facial mists that I had used were the Evian style pure mineral water ones, which do absolutely nothing but be cooling momentarily. All that changed when I found Memebox and the various sprays and mists they have sent me. They do however vary according to the ‘strength’ of the spray that they bestow upon you. Some have a lovely fine misting effect, like being kissed gently in the face by gossamer butterfly wings ……………….

……..others go splat!!

Luckily, this spray is a relatively fine one and I will not constantly feel as though I am taking part in the ALS ice bucket challenge (see here) whilst using it. At the moment I am only using a mist at night (the Priori Lavender one) mainly because I like the smell at bed time but I am saving the others for the summer, when my bedroom is not quite so Arctic.

Again, I can’t find this online, sorry. The best bets for getting hold of some are destashes on Facebook (I have already seen this pop up) and Tester Korea again.

4. ARAON Detox Skin Essence 100ml
Full size product:100ml ($34)

This detoxifying skin essence features a blend of naturally detoxifying ingredients to eliminate even the deepest skin toxins, giving the skin a brighter, more even toned complexion. Formulated with maple water, green tea extract, and other skin detoxifying and renewing ingredients, this essence smooths, plumps and detoxifies for luminous skin that appears visibly renewed.

How to use:
After cleansing, take 2 to 3 pumps of essence and gently massage into the skin. Use after serum.

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Ingredients: Acer Mono sap, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Water, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Water, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Water, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Water, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Water, Centella Asiatica Extract, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Gentiana Lutea Root Extract, Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Symphytum Officinale Leaf Extract, Glyceryl Acrylate / Acrylic Acid CoPolymer, 1,2- Hexanediol.

My Thoughts
Now this is interesting! An essence that specifies usage AFTER a serum. Usually I do this the other way around as it is generally agreed that it should go on thickness of product akin to the rate of absorbency into the skin. You start with the thinnest products (toner, essence) and work up to the thicker (serum, ampoules, oils, creams). The wonderful blogger Pico Prince made an gorgeous diagram to illustrate this and that can be found here.

I don’t know how thick this is as I will not open it at the moment. I have a number of other essences to use up first but it will be interesting to see whether the placement of this product makes a difference. Watch this space. It is a very generous size for an essence at 100ml so should last a while.

This is another product that is nigh on impossible to find online – I have no idea what these companies were thinking when providing their products to Memebox when they aren’t even available to purchase. Sort of defeats the object! Of course they could have envisaged an arrangement where Meme would sell their products in their shop .. if so, that definitely didn’t work out!

5. ESTHETIC HOUSE Vitamin 3000 Vitamin B Vita-Capsule Cream 30ml
Full size product: 30ml ($24)

This skin-renewing vitamin B cream helps to soothe irritated and inflamed. The innovative encapsulation technology allows for an effective delivery of pure, potent vitamin B to soothe irritated skin, and calm red, inflamed skin. Layer individually or blend with daily moisturiser to provide optimal results and create a powerful, multi-purpose product – designed to treat your skin’s unique needs.

How to use:
On cleansed and toned skin, apply cream over dark spots and problem areas. Mix a small amount with favorite skincare daily for optimal results.

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Ingredients: Only in Korean

My Thoughts
This sounds extremely interesting. Although my skin is not sensitive and does not often get irritated I am thinking that this may come in very handy in the summer for if I catch a bit too much sun.
I tend to go a bit red before I go brown … yes, I know BAD CHARLOTTE!! If this cream does soothe irritated and inflamed skin that sounds absolutely ideal. It is also unscented which is great for that usage and since it can be mixed with your current skincare I can customise it to my needs at the time.

And here’s a first for this review – this cream is available online! This version (at £6.48 / $9.97 and free shipping….. bargain!) and what looks like the entire range of vita capsule creams by Esthetic House are available to buy from Elysia-shop79. I haven’t used this seller myself but they have a 99.8% approval rating at the time of posting. This is the link for the B cream and this is the link for the shop itself.

Conclusion

This was definitely one of the better Memeboxes. It is well curated and the products are interesting, albeit unfortunately not widely available outside Korea (which is sort of the point of being introduced to new products?!). This box seems very well suited to my skin type and needs, especially for the upcoming (probably brief but hopefully not) British summer.

This was the last actual ‘mystery’ box that I received but I will review the Winter Essential Masks box next, which was the one that I got just before the Night Care box. Then bring on the Value sets!!