SUM:37 Miracle Rose Cleansing Stick Korean Beauty Review

SUM:37 Miracle Rose Cleansing Stick Korean Beauty Review

SUM:37 has somewhat of a cult following in South Korea.

I feel like I say this about nearly every Korean beauty brand, because, if we're really being honest, the Koreans know a lot about beauty, and (at least in my opinion) make some of the worlds best beauty products.

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Skinfood Buckwheat Loose Powder & Rice Shimmer Powder - Review

Skinfood Buckwheat Loose Powder & Rice Shimmer Powder - Review

It's been a very long time since I bought anything from Skinfood. I think the last purchase I made was a repurchase of their signature Black Sugar Serum (and that was back in 2014!). South Korea is well known for their cutesy packaging and beautifully designed products, and more importantly, for how effective their products are. It takes just a moment of looking around at the women here to be able to see how beautifully cared for their skin is. A large reason their skin looks the way it does is because of protecting their faces (and every other body part) form the sun, but they also spend a lot of time and effort on their beauty routines (do you remember my post on the 10 Step Korean Skincare routine?).

There are so many Korean skincare and beauty brands, and each of them is associated with something unique. Etude House is know for it's very cutesy and girly packaging, Missha is seen as a higher end brand, Tony Moly is what all the school girls favor and Innsifree is seen as the Eco-friendly flagship brand. I always saw Skinfood as one of the cheaper brands, more so when it came to quality than actual price. Most of the products from Etude, Tony Moly and Skinfood are actually priced very similarly but from the look of their packaging, I wasn't really blown away.

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Klairs Midnight Blue Calming Cream - Currently Testing & First Impressions

Klairs Midnight Blue Calming Cream - Currently Testing & First Impressions

For the past week I have been trying a very exciting new addition to the Dear Klairs range of beauty products. Dear Klairs is a Korean beauty brand established in 2010 in Seoul, South Korea, and what I love most about them is that they do not test on animals and their their products are alcohol-free, paraben-free, and artificial-color-free!

The majority of their products are catered towards sensitive skins, and their latest addition, the Midnight blue Calming Cream is no exception. If you have 'patchy' skin, dry and undernourished only in certain parts of your face, then this cream is just for you!

I have tried out a number of their products (courtesy of WishTrend) and have been most impressed with them. Dear Klairs has actually become one of my favourite Korean beauty brands, and I have tried LOTS of Korean. Here are my own (always honest) reviews for the products I have tried out so far.

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Innisfree Ginger Oil Cream - Review

Innisfree Ginger Oil Cream - Review

I think what I love most about Innisfree is their innovative product lines. Every few months they release a new line of products (or at the very least a new addition to their already existing product lines) and last Autumn was no exception. As part of their fall/winter lineup, Innisfree announced a ginger-oil-centric series of serums, creams, and essences that promise to: 

make skin more hydrated, firmer, and healthier

As with most of their skin care ranges, they claim to to contain lots of of natural ingredients from the Island of Jeju. I'm sure you can guess what is extra special about this cream and what special ingredient goes into it?

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I'm From Honey Mask {Review}

I'm From Honey Mask {Review}

It's winter here in Korea, and the icy cold wind has wrecked havoc on my normal to combination skin. 

I hate the feeling of having tight skin after a hot bath (thank goodness for my bath tub...even though it's a shocking shade of pink nothing beats a hot bath after a day of being out in cold). I've been using and loving this Honey Mask from I'm from which was kindly set to me by WishTrend to review.

I'm from is a Korean skincare company that I hadn't heard of before trying this product. I initially though there must have been something lost in translation when I say first saw the jar as their name sounded very unusual. I kept trying to understand 'where' they were from.

This mask is very difficult to get your hands on here in Korea. Due to it's popularity it's often out of stock online. It's currently in stock on WishTrend, an online Korean beauty store which delivers worldwide.

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Korean Skincare Products: What goes Where & The Infamous 10 Step Skincare Routine

Korean Skincare Products: What goes Where & The Infamous 10 Step Skincare Routine

As you may or may not have noticed from my ever growing list of reviews, I am quite a fan of Korean beauty products. There are so many lotions and potions and pretty bottles and tubes (not to mention all the on going sales throughout the month) that it's hard not to get hooked.

There is also a reason that Korean Beauty products are so sought after...they work.

As a South African (ie I do not have, nor do I want, a face that is as white as snow) I have had my fair share of trial and error when it comes to Korean beauty products. Being part beauty blogger (I also sell stationery and am a freelance photographer) I choose to only review the products that I really do love and actually use. If I buy a product and I don't like it, I won't feature it. I'm not into tearing down a product just because it didn't work for me, as it may work for the next person. 

As Korean skincare products are so different to Western brands, it goes without saying that there are different ways to using them and preferred method of application for each product. Have you heard about the 10 Step System? If not don't worry, all will be revealed soon!

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Innisfree Peony Perfume Room Diffuser

Innisfree Peony Room Diffuser

Today I want to share with you a short post on this delightful room diffuser from Innisfree. I picked this up during their 50% sale last month (oh just in case you see read this post today Friday 11th December) Innisfree are currently having their 30% off monthly sale. Not quite as good as the half price sale, but still a sale giving you a few extra pennies in your pocket for Christmas shopping. 

Innisfree is one of my absolute favorite Korean Beauty Brands (you can see just how much I love them by looking at my Beauty page...I've got 'one or two' Innisfree reviews on there hehe). 

This review is of the Peony Perfumed Diffuser. When I was in store, I also really like the Fig (I think I might need to add that to my Christmas List!) which has a very fresh and clean smell.

When choosing a perfume diffuser, I was worried that about the fragrance being very over powering, but it's very subtle. It gives the room it's placed in a very soft fragrance that lingers, without leaving you feeling sick from the sweetness. Another great one I would recommend is the Lemon scented diffuser. It would make a good kitchen (or even bathroom) addition.

Here is the Korean blurb about this diffuser from the Innisfree website:

Innisfree Peony Room Perfume Diffuser

 The diffuser is sold separately from the reed stick, which comes in 3 different versions - the basic reed stick (this I the one I have), the twig , and the flower . The flower is very pretty but I'm not sure how well it work to diffuse. 

The perfumed diffuser costs 20,000 Won, and the reed stick's price depends on which version you buy. The basic reed stick is 2,000 Won for a pack of 10, the twig version is 4,000 Won, and the flower is 5,000 Won. 

And it doesn't hurt that the bottle is so beautiful to look at, as is the design of each and everything I've ever bought at Innisfree.

Do you own a room diffuser? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below. 

Innisfree Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock 50+ PA++ {Review}

Innisfree Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock

Even though it's technically winter here in South Korea, whether you wear sunscreen (or suncream for my South African readers and sunblock for my American readers) should not be dependant on the season or weather. It should be worn every day regardless of how much sun you actually see in the sky.

For my own skin, I suffer from pigmentation (click here to read about my new wonder product from Innisfree) and one of the main causes of skin pigmentation is sun exposure. Having grown up in a country that has plenty of year round sunshine (South Africa) I was exposed to A LOT of sun growing up, and even though my parents were very cautions and made ma layer up with cream and hats when outside, I still spent a lot of my teenage years baking myself outside to achieve the perfect tan. Now that I am older and wiser (and the first few wrinkle...ahem, I mean 'laugh' lines are appearing) I have been making sure to wear a face suncream every day, without fail, and have incorporated it into my beauty regime. It's something that is just not worth missing out on. 

The Skin Cancer Foundation has the following to say about sunscreen:

Sunscreens are products combining several ingredients that help prevent the sun's ultraviolet (UV) radiation from reaching the skin. Two types of ultraviolet radiation, UVA and UVB, damage the skin, age it prematurely, and increase your risk of skin cancer.

UVB is the chief culprit behind sunburn, while UVA rays, which penetrate the skin more deeply, are associated with wrinkling, leathering, sagging, and other light-induced effects of aging (photo-aging). They also exacerbate the carcinogenic effects of UVB rays, and increasingly are being seen as a cause of skin cancer on their own. Sunscreens vary in their ability to protect against UVA and UVB.

What about SPF?

Most sunscreens with an SPF of 15 or higher do an excellent job of protecting against UVB. SPF — or Sun Protection Factor — is a measure of a sunscreen's ability to prevent UVB from damaging the skin. Here's how it works: If it takes 20 minutes for your unprotected skin to start turning red, using an SPF 15 sunscreen theoretically prevents reddening 15 times longer — about five hours.

Another way to look at it is in terms of percentages: SPF 15 filters out approximately 93 percent of all incoming UVB rays. SPF 30 keeps out 97 percent and SPF 50 keeps out 98 percent. They may seem like negligible differences, but if you are light-sensitive, or have a history of skin cancer, those extra percentages will make a difference. And as you can see, no sunscreen can block all UV rays.

Thankfully, these days, suncreams are no longer these thick lotions that turn you a ghostly shade of pale, and there are so many skin care lines that are producing suncreams with various properties. I have always been a BIG fan of the FaceShop's range of suncreams (like their Oil Cut range which is great for oilier skin and provides a matte finish) and ha been alternating between that and their Natural Sun Eco Power Long Lasting Suncream. That was until I tried the Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock from Innisfree. 

Innisfree Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock Review

As you can see this particular suncream has an SPF factor of 50+ and is PA+++. 

So what does PA+++ mean? PA is a Japanese/Korean rating system that shows how much protection you are getting from UVA rays. You will see either PA+, PA++, or PA+++ on the label, with more + signs meaning a higher level of UVA protection.  

The Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock from Innisfree combines all of my needs in a suncream. It's mattifying, non-greasy and acts as a primer for my skin, allowing my makeup to glide on top effortlessly. It sinks into my skin instantly so no waiting around for that typical suncream shine to go away. 

The Innisfree Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock SPF 50+ PA+++ is made with organic sunflower oil and organic green tea grown on Jeju island in Korea. It’s also made with their famous “5 free” formula. According to Innisfree, their products are free of parabens, artificial dyes, ethanol, animal ingredients, and mineral oil. 

I have normal to combination skin (although it is drier in Winter times and oilier in the summer) and right now this suncream is perfect for my skin type. If you have oilier skin, Innisfree does offer a formula called Eco Safety No Sebum Sunblock which absorbs sebum and provides more of a matte finish. I find currently, this formula offers the perfect makeup base for my skin and I love how soft and smooth my skin is after using it. 

The cream is a thick, white formulation which I didn't find left a white cast on my skin at all. I have an olive skin tone (which is much darker than most Koreans) and yet I didn't find that my skin had a white cast at all after application. You can see my hand in the before and after photographs below. 

I will most definitely be repurchasing this suncream when mine runs out and have been most impressed with the formula as well as what a great makeup base it is.

And incase you're still wondering whether you should be wearing suncream, maybe this video will convince you...

Are there any sun care products that you current love? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!