Category Archives: galactomyces ferment filtrate


Nov & Dec Empties

Happy 2017 everyone! These are my empties from November and December of 2016:

Benton Honest TT Mist
My 4th or 5th bottle? Honestly at this point I’ve lost track. Continue reading


Whamisa Organic Flowers Toners Refresh Review

To date, I’ve used quite a few Whamisa products, most of which were overwhelmingly meh. A wiser person would’ve given up on the brand by now, but the marketing- the promise of better skin delivered by organic flowers- keeps me coming back. This time, I’ve found a keeper!


At A Glance

Product Name:
Whamisa Organic Flowers Refresh Toner Continue reading


February Empties

See my January empties here.

I just wrapped up part 1 of a project at work that has completely taken over my life the past couple of weeks. I’m hoping to make some progress on the backlog of posts I have in my draft file, but in the meantime, here is a quick rundown of the things that I emptied in February!


NIP + FAB GLYCOLIC FIX PADS – These were a sample from the Target January 2016 Refresh Beauty Box and I actually quite like them. I have not been using chemical exfoliants since starting tretinoin a few months ago but it’s been something I’ve been wanting to reintroduce. They have a good amount of alcohol, which I don’t love, but the exfoliating action is mild enough for me to use in conjunction with tretinoin. I’m planning to give Pixi Glow Tonic a try next, but if those don’t work out I may give the full size of these pads a try.

MIZON SEA WEED JELLY SCRUB – I usually stay away from physical exfoliants because when I use them, I end up compulsively sanding my skin into submission, which leaves my skin soft but is so, so irritating. This scrub, made of seaweed jelly and konjac pieces, is extremely gentle and seems proofed against users like me. I use this by applying on dry skin, moving it around my skin, and then jumping in the shower to rinse it off.

SULWHASOO EVERFAIR PERFECTING CUSHION REFILL (housed in an Etude House Sand Cat Cushion) – I’m a NC25, which is slightly too dark for most Korean cushions. This cushion in #25 is a pretty good fit and when used in conjunction with a beauty blender, makes for an incredible finish – thin and natural looking but with decent coverage.

KLAIRS JUICY DROP – This is an ascorbic-acid based Vitamin C serum that is suitable for sensitive skin. To be honest, I don’t really notice much of an effect, good or bad, with this serum and was determined to finish it mostly so I can go back to using my HG Skinceuticals CE Ferulic Serum.

FROM NATURE AGE TREATMENT ESSENCE This is my favorite first essence to date! It is intensely hydrating and makes my skin smooth and glowy. Of all the items I finished in February, this is probably the one that I will repurchase.


What products did you guys finish in February?


From Nature Age Treatment Essence Review

I often feel that the Asian beauty products that become popular in the West are somewhat arbitrary. Take first treatment essences, for example. Missha FTE is one of the first products people reach for when first adopting a Korean beauty routine, yet there are dozens, if not hundreds, of other first essences that remain virtually unknown even though they have very similar ingredients.

For example, there’s the From Nature Age Treatment Essence. It first fell on my radar after /u/GiveMeABreak25 repeatedly raved about it and again later, as luck would have it, when I received a sample from a Testerkorea order and fell in love. Whereas the Missha essence did not seem to do much for my skin other than make it wet, this essence feels like it penetrates through to the nether regions of my skin to deliver a much needed dose my hydration and glowiness. Used after cleansing, it makes my skin feel renewed and rebalanced. In other words, I think this essence is due some much deserved attention and so here we are.



The Claim
Wrinkle Repair & Whitening for the first step of skin care

Where does it fit in your routine?
This is a first essence. Use it after all cleansing steps.

Size and Price
This bottle contains 150ml of product. I purchased this from Yesstyle for ~$20, but it is no longer on their website. It is available on Ebay for $22.49 or if you are feeling savvy and want to try your hand at a forwarding service, Memebox Korea has it for 9900KRW ($8.13 USD).

This comes in a glass bottle. I’m in constant battle with the bottle because it likes to collect finger prints like nobody’s business and it drives me bananas!

There’s a hint of yeast, but it’s very mild. I don’t notice it at all anymore. No artificial fragrance, essential oils, or any added fragrance of any kind.

Color and texture
This essence is completely clear and has a thin, runny texture like water, but with more slip.

What’s in it?

The ingredient list is simple but keenly focused. Other than the ingredients discussed above, there are also a handful of extracts, some fermented some not, but very little else! For those of you that don’t like “fillers” in your products, you really can’t ask for much more!

Acne Triggers & Irritants
Cosdna identifies Butylene Glycol (1) as an acne trigger

Full Ingredients
Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate, Niacinamide, Water, Adenosine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Saccharomyces/Angelica Dahurica Root Ferment Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Paeonia Albiflora Flower Extract, Ipomoea Hederacea Seed Extract, Butylene Glycol, Chlorphenesin



I’ve been using this bottle for a little over two months and it is very nearly empty (which is why I’m finally getting my act together to write this review). In that time, it’s become an absolute staple in my routine.

First essences are supposed to deliver a concentrated but easily absorbable dose of skin-beneficial ingredients. This essence does that. With regular use of this essence, my skin looks and feels healthier, and on the days I’ve gone without, my skin looks lackluster, seems to be more easily irritated than usual, and is more prone to dryness. I can’t quite pinpoint exactly what this product is doing, but since I’ve started using it, my skin feels healthier and generally more resilient to thinks like cold, dry weather.

If that was all this essence did, it would still be a great product, but there’s more. Likely due to the significant niacinamide concentration (credit once again to /u/GiveMeABreak25 for obtaining the concentration), this essence is also surprisingly hydrating! When I use this, I don’t feel the need to use a hydrating toner at all. Also, on days when my skin needs a little extra help, I’ve been using this essence to make lotion masks, which expunges any hint of dehydration and also seems to have calming effects to my skin.

The essence also absorbs easily, does not leave any residue or stickiness, and does not irritate my face at all. It also layers extremely well under creams. Overall, you could say I’m quite happy with this essence!


The Takeaway

This is probably the hardest working, dehydration fighting, skin plumping first essence you’ve never heard of. It is by far my favorite essence that I’ve tried to date!

From Nature Age Treatment Essence Review.jpg

Disclosure: This product was purchased by me. This post contains an affiliate link. See here for my full disclosure policy. 

Purebess Special 100% Galactomyces Extract Essence

I’ve been running low on enthusiasm for Asian skincare products as of late, due in part to the number of products everyone else seemed crazy about but didn’t do much for my skin. But it seems like the tides are turning! First with Goodal’s waterest lasting water oil and now with this terrific and economical essence.

SK-II, Pitera, and Dupes

Pitera is the magical ingredient in SK-II’s products. Pitera’s origin story (old sake brewers with youthful hands) stinks of a marketing gimmick but there is some research (albeit mostly done by P&G which owns SK-II) that pitera has antioxidant effects and increases production of hyaluron, a component in the skin’s extra-cellular matrix, the production of which decreases with age. SK-II’s facial treatment essence has been on my radar for years but I am less than eager to drop $100 for 2.5 oz of essence. In comparison, Purebess’s 100% Galactomyces Extract Essence contains 100% Galactomyces ferment filtrate (vs SK-II’s 90%) and cost me under $10, including Avecko fees and shipping. It’s a small bottle, but still comes to about 6 times cheaper than SK-II. Continue reading