2019 Skincare Favorites

As you know, I love cleansing and these are the new cleanser I’ve added to my favorites.

Sekkisei treatment cleansing oil – I’m usually a balm person but this cleansing oil feels nourishing and gentle on the skin.

Youth to the People superfood cleanser – I love cleansing foams but this is just on a league of its own. it’s watery but foams, it smells great, and it feels so good on the skin.

Then I Met You living cleansing balm and soothing tea cleansing gel – this is just a very nourishing duo. it does the job of cleansing the skin while refreshing and nourishing the skin.

Ole Henriksen phat glow facial – this zaps my blemishes and gives my skin a ridiculous glow the morning after

Korres hydra-biome – this came in at the latter part of the year and I have barely a few months trying this but it’s just so good. It plumps, brightens, and improves my skin overall. Love it. Love it.

Youth to the People 11% AHA exfoliation power toner – this is strong on the skin but it does give stellar results of glowing and clear skin.

Whalmyung skin elixir – my go-to hydrating toner this year

Peach and Lily the good acids pore toner – gentle and good for daily use, this toner doesn’t just brighten the skin. It nourishes them too

Then I Met You birch milk refining toner and the giving essence – if you haven’t noticed I love @charlottejcho for giving me TIMY products this year. This duo are gentle and nourishing but not only that but they also plump and brighten the skin in the long run. I always recommend these for those who have sensitive skin or those who are just building up their skincare routine

Farmacy Beauty very cherry bright – with a heavier texture, I use this brightening serum when my skin is feeling dehydrated

Peach and Lily glass skin serum – this just makes my skin look so damn good

Volition Beauty strawberry-c serum – another brightening serum, this is lightweight and gentle

Caudalie vinopure serum – my go-to serum when my skin is acting up

Korres wild rose spotless serum – yes, I love brightening serums. this one is watery and great before applying makeup

Bliss renew and smooth, glow and hydrate serums – amazed by this. they both have enjoyable texture and for the price, what they do to my skin js more than worth it.

Paula’s Choice power berry serum – a staple in my morning routine

Paula’s Choice antioxidant pore purifier – this just helps when my skin is irritated

Drunk Elephant a-passioni – this made me love retinol. It doesn’t sting, it doesn’t make my face red, and it has improved the overall texture and firmness of my skin

Wander Beauty do not disturb – this has retinoid and I love using this treatment when my skin is feeling dry and dull

Wander Beauty layover – my skin just drinks this in. it light yet so nourishing to the skin

Wander Beauty glow ahead – it calls itself a face oil but it doesn’t feel like it. It’s light and it doesn’t feel oily at all. I use this before applying SPF and makeup and it just a boost of radiance to my skin

First Aid Beauty retinol eye cream – see what I mean by loving retinol this year? I have it for my eyes as well.

Brand Overview: Rooki Beauty

Using superfoods and japanese extraction techniques and modern delivery systems, Rooki Beauty capitalizes on fruits and veggies’ antioxidants, vitamins, and phytonutrients on their skincare products that promise glowing and healthy skin. Their products are also cruelty-free and are made without artificial fragrances, mineral oils, parabens, phthalates, PEGs, and coal tire dyes.

The Honey Matcha Cleansing Drops (₱2,239/$44) aims to remove dirt and impurities while nourishing the skin using honey, chia seeds, uji matcha, cape jasmine fruit, and lactic acid. A little, and I mean a small dot, can go so far with this. I once dispensed a penny-sized amount and it foamed so much. I didn’t mind, though, because it made my face feel like it’s in inside a cloud. It rinses easily and left my skin feeling deeply cleansed and smooth without the filmy residue. I like this on my oily skin.

A moisturizing mask, the Green Pulp Paste Masque (₱2,429/$47) uses the brand’s Green Pulp Paste™, a blend of plant complexes (carrots, tomatoes, matcha, kale, and soybeans) to fight free radicals for a brighter and plumper skin. It looks like a green gel right out of the tube but applies white on the skin. Because of the creamy texture, I like applying this with my fingers. It feels warm on the skin, not tightening at all. I let it stay on my face for about 10 minutes and noticed that it somehow sinks into my skin and dries clear while still feeling creamy. It so easy to rinse, only a couple of splashes will do to completely remove it. It leaves my face feel so soft and balanced. This is my favorite product out of the bunch and I have already incorporated it in my weekly mask collection. I use this in the middle of the week to help balance my skin to keep it from looking dull.

The Superfood Saviour Crème (₱2,999/$58) uses kale, lingonberries, and chia seeds together with their 3-in-1 moisture system (hyaluronic acid, squalene, and coq10) to regenerate, firm, and moisturize the skin. Its consistency is heavier than most of the moisturizers I usually go for, denser too. It has some weight to it and has a slight rubbery grip to the skin. It dries well but leaves a bit of a tacky finish. It leaves the skin looking plump and feeling bouncy though. For my oily skin, this is best used at night. I usually reach for this when I am doing a short routine or when I’m having a good skin day and just want to pack on antioxidants.

New brands are tricky – I’m excited to try them but of course, there can be repercussions. I am pleasantly surprised with how Rooki Beauty’s products, especially the Honey Matcha Cleansing Drops and Green Pulp Paste Masque, worked so well with my skin and have provided me with balanced and healthy-looking skin. Honestly, glad to get the opportunity to try their first batch of products and I can’t wait to see what they do next.

The Rooki Beauty Honey Matcha Cleansing Drops, Green Pulp Paste Masque, and Superfood Saviour Crème were provided by @rookibeauty. Available at rookibeauty.co

Cult Favorite: Paula’s Choice Power Berry Serum

Living in the city makes my skin exposed to a lot of environmental stressors. Having skincare from me from those was a foreign concept for me until I saw results. Antioxidants provide me healthier-looking skin that’s not prone to clogging and dullness.

That’s why I was so excited to try the Power Berry Serum from a brand I adore, Paula’s Choice. This newly launched serum contains 13 different berries like açaí, blueberry, raspberry, elderberry, goji berry, and strawberry fruit extracts. These ingredients are rich in antioxidants, vitamins, polyphenols, flavonoids, lignans, and anthocyanidins to repair and defend the skin against environmental damage. It also contains sea buckthorn, raspberry, elderberry, and squalene to revitalize, hydrate, and soothe the skin.

I mean, it’s pink. How can I not like it? Also, the tube type of packaging is perfect. No careful opening needed, a lifesaver for clumsy people like I am, and it’s very easy to bring when you’re traveling. Also, the bright color always seems to be calling my name so, I don’t forget applying this in the morning before makeup.

The serum itself feels a bit cool on the skin. It also feels light but has a slight creamy feeling. It doesn’t apply matte and leaves the skin dewy, which made me hesitant at first because textures like this tend to make my skin oily after a few hours of use. This, thankfully, didn’t do that. It left my skin healthy looking and hydrated, as expected of a good skincare product with antioxidants. It also played well with the makeup products I usually use – no sliding off business here. This is honestly a good addition to my existing skincare routine as it supports the actives I use. After a month of using this product, I have noticed less dullness especially in the middle of the week and my skin is much more radiant and healthy-looking.

The Paula’s Choice Power Berry Serum was provided by @paulaschoice. Available for $31 at paulaschoice.com

New In: Paula’s Choice RESIST Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50, Smoothing Primer Serum SPF 30, and Lipscreen SPF 50

I am quite lenient when it comes to skincare products. As long as they do what they promised, I will gladly say it as it is. However, loving a product, for me, is a tall order. I don’t throw the L word lightly. So, believe me when I say this. I love these new spf products from Paula’s Choice. It’s love at first application.

With a really lightweight texture that goes so well with my oily skin, RESIST Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50 ($33) just blew me out the water. It smells like sunscreen but feels runnier than the other SPF products I’ve tried. The first application is an instant like but I wasn’t prepared to love this. It applies like a dream – thinly and without any oily or creamy feeling. It also quickly sinks into the skin, like a milky essence. What I really love about this is, because of antioxidants that are inside this, it feels really hydrating on the skin even if it dries matte.

Using the RESIST Smoothing Primer Serum SPF 30 ($24) was honestly a journey. It feels and looks like a gel in my hand, which is very unusual for a product with SPF, at least compared to all the products I’ve tried. My literal thought was, “We are going to have so much fun.” I put out about four dots on my face and really went in. That’s when I felt the oiliness then I was like, “Oh f—— no. I have an event today. I can’t.” I mean, it felt really oily that I imagined my foundation sliding off even before lunchtime. Then out of nowhere, it dried matte. There’s no residue on my face whatsoever and that made me smile again. So, yes, the rollercoaster this priming serum gave me for two minutes is the most drama I can take that week. After that, everything’s normal but it made my day because the matte finish worked so well for my skin. It didn’t disrupt makeup application and didn’t aggravate the oiliness.

Something I always forget is having SPF protection on my lips so the Lipscreen SPF 50 ($10) is a new part of my routine. It applies thinly and evenly on the lips, not at all greasy and heavy. It has a certain grip to it, which I also like, because it helps grip my lip color. It leaves my lips smooth, soft, and protected so I really couldn’t ask for anything more. Also, it weirdly evens the tone of my lips, making it look healthier and like it has more color.

These products have been part of my morning routine ever since I got them and I would gladly repurchase them once they’re empty. The hydrating fluid and the priming serum are honestly the best SPF products for oily skin. They are exactly what I was looking for – lightweight, dries matte, and full of antioxidants.

The Paula’s Choice RESIST Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50, Smoothing Primer Serum SPF 30, and Lipscreen SPF 50 were provided by @paulaschoice. Available at paulaschoice.com.

Monthly Favorites: May 2019

Twice Early Bird and Twilight

I admit to being one of those people who forget to brush their teeth at night. So when Twice sent over their Early Bird and Twilight pastes for me to try, I didn’t deem it as extra. The black and white tubes I got serve as a reminder that oral are should include a twice a day routine.

Both pastes aim to whiten your teeth, remineralize enamel, prevent cavities, and protect against sensitivity with vitamins A, C, E, and plant-based aloe vera. They are gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, cruelty-free, and are formulated without SLS, PEGs, parabens, sugar, carrageenan, triclosan, sulfates, and alcohol. Twice also provides 10 percent of its profits to GLO Good Foundation, which serves communities in dire need of proper dental care.

Early Bird contains wintergreen and peppermint to give you a wakeup call. Its taste is similar to the everyday toothpaste so it didn’t feel much of a change. On the other hand, Twilight is a blend of peppermint, vanilla, and lavender for nighttime relaxation. This toothpaste tastes sweeter than your normal toothpaste making it feel calming. Both tubes of toothpaste are cleansing and gentle on my teeth. After weeks of use, I noticed that my teeth don’t get as sensitive and, of course, the effect of brushing twice a day has so many benefits – my teeth were brighter and they felt ultimately cleaner.

Twice Early Bird and Twilight were provided by @twice. Available for $17 at smiletwice.com

Sensse Face Contour Definer

I am no stranger to facial rollers but the Face Contour Definer from Sensse is unlike anything I have in my face roller collection.

Promising to be a mini fave workout, the Face Contour Definer is designed to fit the contour of the face to promote blood circulation, stimulate collagen production, and lift and sculpt the face.

I like running this along on my jawline, which, fun fact, I never realized could feel tired until I tried a face roller. While face rollers, for me feels incredibly soothing on the forehead and eye areas, this is the most soothing on the jaw area. This immediately relaxes my muscles, since I tend to either talk a lot or not talk at all. It’s easy to use and the two-prongs soothe both the face and neck area. With its luxe design, using it always makes me feel elegant and the massaging it does feels luxurious as well. I don’t exactly have what other people call a jawline, so the sculpting and lifting part wouldn’t be noticeable but what I really love about this is it made me realize how tense my jaw area is and it greatly helped on that end.

The Sensse Facial Contour Definer was provided by @sensse and @nbpr. Available for £39.99 at senssebeauty.com

Dose Skin Anti Dose

Do you ever notice how your skin looks good in places with clean air? Like you are actually glowing, there is much less dirt when you remove your makeup, and your skin just feels so soft.

That’s what Dose Skin is all about. They want to take action against environmental stressors with their first product, the Anti Dose. It promises to be a “second skin” to prevent and delay the aging effects of polluted air.

It contains ectoin to preserve and strengthen, adaptogenic extracts to delay the effects of oxidative stress, antioxidants like arctic root to diminish visible signs of aging, chia seed extract and biosaccharide gum-4 to form a protective barrier, chaga mushroom to moisturize, white birch to brighten, maral root and rice bran to slow visible signs of skin stress and environmental aggressors, resurrection plant to improve radiance and replenish the moisture barrier, siberian ginseng to soothe and enhance radiance, centella asiatica to soften and soothe dry skin, white tea and reservatrol to replenish tired skin and fight sources of oxidative stress, spinach to soothe, snow algae to repair, and moringa peptide to facilitates the removal of micro-particle pollution from the skin. This product is also free of fragrances, alcohol, essential oil, and menthol.

This has a gel-like texture and feels lightweight. It’s odorless and gentle on the skin as well. I like applying this in the morning before sunscreen. I like that this is full of antioxidants and after more than a month of use, this helped brighten and clear my skin. Getting into skincare made me notice the small things. For example, I easily get dull skin in the middle of the week so I need to exfoliate. I also like using brightening serums every other day to combat it. Using this though, helped make my skin look not so dull anymore. It is a good addition in my routine as it noticeably helps protect my skin and prevent dullness.

The Dose Skin Anti Dose was provided by @doseskin. Available for $60 at doseskin.com

Nuria Defend Skin Shielding Essence

The Defend Skin Shielding Essence from Nuria contains ginseng root, carob, careegan, agar, gold, niacinamide, and glycerin to target environmental toxins, restore skin’s antioxidant capacity, improve skin suppleness, help reduce the look of fine lines and dullness, and shield the skin from fine dust.

First off, this looks cute. The bottle has a few pinks beads and the essence has a few gold flecks in it. I like using this in the morning instead of applying a moisturizer. It light gel-like texture makes my skin look plump and feel bouncy. It offers enough hydration and goes well under my makeup. Using this helped keep my skin from

looking dull especially after being outside for long periods of time.

The Nuria Defend Skin Shielding Essence

These products were provided by @nuriabeauty and @stylehouseco . Available for $48 at nuriabeauty.com

Saint Iris Adriatica Purity Paste

A first in my stash, the Purity Paste from Saint Iris Adriatica is a 3-minute #bodymask to gently exfoliate the skin, improve its texture, and leave it rejuvenated and glowing. Suitable to also be used as a face mask, this contains mediterranean cedar micro-dust, willow bark extract, olive, seaberry, seaweed protein, cherry kernel oil, and 10 essential wildplant oil like borage and rosehip.

This cruelty-free mask is a really gentle exfoliator. I’m really more of a mask person than a scrub person so this was enjoyable for me to apply. The brush that it came with is also so soft and I was able to apply the mask all over my arms and legs evenly and quickly. The mask has a slight tan tint but it didn’t stick to my skin. The rinsing off part was a bit messy though because the tint went straight to my bathroom tiles so this is best used in the tub to avoid staining corners. However, it left my skin soft and kind of smooth without the heavy cream feeling most exfoliators have. I like using this twice a month as part of my selfcare ritual.

The Saint Iris Adriatica Purity Paste was provided by @saintirisadriatica. Available for £48.00 at siadritica.com

Grown Alchemist Detox Toner

There is a lot of talk on the need for a toner, however, for #oilyskin, I like using one to rehydrate my skin after cleansing, remove additional dirt, and ready my face before using actives and other serums.

The Detox Toner from Growth Alchemist uses hydrolyzed algin from kelp, peptide-33, rhodiola rosea extract to remove impurities while noticeably regenerating and repairing damaged skin cells; reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also has polysaccharides, ginkgo biloba leaf extract, panax ginseng root extract, and reishi mushroom extract to detoxify the skin and stimulate the production of collagen.

This face toner is a literal treat for me because it smells so much like roses. It is watery but it feels like it has some weight to it, making it feel hydrating and moisturizing to the skin. It’s one of the most hydrating toners I’ve tried. So hydrating that it doesn’t aggravate the oiliness of my skin the whole day. It also leaves the skin feeling soft and plump.

The Grown Alchemist Detox Toner was provided by @grownalchemist @materiae and @davidpirottabrands. Available for $58 at materiae.com