Happy 2017 everyone! These are my empties from November and December of 2016:
RoseRoseShop sent me the Benton TT Mist for review purposes. The opinions expressed are my own. The LJH Mist was purchased by me.
I had initially decided to do a comparison review of these two products because I expected them to be very similar. After all, they both contain high amounts of tea tree water – 70% in the LJH mist, 80% in Benton- and let’s be honest, who wants to read two FULL reviews of nearly identical mists?
However, after spending some time with both products (7 weeks with Benton and 4 with LJH), I’ve realized that not only are these products very different from each other, they are also some of the most overachieving mists I’ve used! My initial expectations were completely off base and I couldn’t be more thrilled!
Without further ado, here are the two tea tree mists:
At a Glance
BENTON HONEST TT MIST
Price: $5.96 on RoseRoseShop, $8.48 on Jolse, $12.13 on Cosmetic-Love, $6 on Memebox (get another 8% off all Memebox orders from TopCashBack)
Packaging: Soft plastic, non-aerosol spray tube
Fragrance: None detected
Acne Triggers & Irritants: Butylene Glycol (1) is an acne trigger
Full Ingredients: Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Water (80%), Sodium Hyaluronate (7%), Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Extract (5%), Butylene Glycol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Althaea Rosea Root Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Beta-Glucan, Polyglutamic Acid, Aspalathus Linearis (rooibos) Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Psidium Guajava (guava) Extract, Zanthoxylum Piperitum (Japanese pepper) Fruit Extract, Pulsatilla Koreana Extract, Usnea Barbata (lichen) Extract
LEEJIHAM (LJH) TEA TREE 70 MIST TONER
Price: $27 on HKCPlaza (currently 60% off), $33 on Birchbox, $33 on Glow Recipe (get $5 off your first order), $33 on Memebox (get another 8% off all Memebox orders from TopCashBack)
Packaging: Hard plastic, cylindrical spray bottle
Fragrance: Tea tree scent of light – medium strength
Acne Triggers & Irritants: Butylene Glycol (1) is an acne trigger
Full Ingredients: Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Extract (70%), DI-Water, Niacinamide, Sorbitol, Humectants, Disodium EDTA, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, 1,2-Hexanediol, Illicium Verum (Anise) Fruit Extract, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Butylene Glycol, Rhus Semialata Gall Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Enantia Chlorantha Bark Extract, Oleanolic Acid, Butylene Glycol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Fruit Extract
The production value of the LJH mist is really high in every way! The packaging looks unexceptional in photos but is much more impressive in person. It’s larger than I expected, made of a sturdy plastic, and looks quite sleek. The misting mechanism is top notch as well, releasing a consistent, finely dispersed amount of product with each pump. On the skin, the LJH mist has a lot of slip, absorbs quickly, and doesn’t leave any residue. It’s a very well formulated product from both an ingredients and cosmetic elegance point of view. It does smell very slightly of tea tree, which I dislike but I feel like most people wouldn’t give it a second thought.
By contrast, the Benton TT mist did not make the best first impression. The soft plastic tube, while practical in its portability, is mostly unremarkable, and the mist that comes out is way too dense and forceful! I actually stopped using it as a mist, for the most part, choosing instead to spray into my hands then patting onto my face. Also, the liquid that comes out feels exactly like water, which made me extremely suspicious that this mist would be a repeat of the CosRX centella water toner, which not only felt like water but was about as effective as water.
Here’s a video that shows how different the mists that each of these products produce are:
However, after spending some time with both mists, the Benton mist has completely won me over while the LJH mist sits mostly unused in my stash.
The LJH is not a bad product by any means. It’s a light-to-medium strength astringent toner with some moisturizing properties, likely from the niacinamide it includes. I think it would be a great product for oily but dehydrated skin types, but it’s not something that suits my skin type very well. I also think it has slightly too much slip, but that’s probably a personal hangup.
The Benton mist on the other hand, is neither astringent (this is a VERY good thing for dry skin) nor hydrating, but is remarkable in how effectively it calms my skin. My skin is very prone to redness and inflammation, especially on my cheeks and around my nose. Using this Benton TT mist not only reduces visible redness immediately, but after a few weeks of consistent usage, my face has been generally less prone to redness. If you’ve got sensitive or easily irritated skin, I can’t recommend this enough. It is also extremely gentle (again, it feels like water) and has become the first product I reach for on days when my skin is irritated, sensitive, and/or over-exfoliated.
In short, the Benton mist is perfect for my skin’s needs! I don’t even mind the lack of moisturizing power, because I’ve got tons of other products in my routine to do that. What I don’t have is another product that can soothe my skin nearly as effectively. The only complaint I have with this product is the misting nozzle.
Despite a rocky start, the Benton TT mist has earned a long-term spot in my skincare routine. It is neither astringent nor moisturizing, but has remarkable anti-inflammatory effects on my skin. The LJH mist would be a good product for oily but dehydrated skin types (I think) but does not suit my skin type.
Disclaimer: The Benton TT mist was provided to me for review purposes by RoseRoseShop. The opinions expressed are my own. The LJH Mist was purchased by me. This post contains affiliate links. See here for my full disclosure policy.
Have you ever become obsessed with an ingredient before actually having any experience with it? That’s what happened with me and centella asiatica. This exotic sounding plant is supposed to have all sorts of soothing and renewing properties that I really wanted to work on my skin. Plus, centella asiatica looks like miniature lily pads! How cute is that?
Unfortunately, this is not a rave review. I find this product to be harmless but seriously underwhelming. Let’s get this over with, shall we?
What Is Centella Asiatica + Why This Toner Probably Doesn’t Work
Centella asiatica, also known as gotu kola, is a plant native to the wetlands of Asia. It’s been used for 3000 years in Asia and India as a general heal-all. There’s a good amount of mythology around this plant, particularly around the sub species hydrocotyle asiatica minor, which is referred to as “fo ti tieng” which translates into elixir of long life and was theorized in the 70’s as containing a mysterious youth preserving factor called “vitamin X.”
Unfortunately, the existence of this subspecies has been debunked since then, but within all this mythology, there are a few sound bites of truth. There is a substantial amount of science testifying to centella asiatica’s potential as a wound healing ingredient, specifically around the plant’s primary compounds asiaticoside, madecassoside, asiatic and madecassic acids.
Amongst some of the findings, topical application of extracts of centella asiatica have been shown to increase collagen, decrease inflammatory reactions, exhibit anti-psoriatic activity, enhance type I collagen and demonstrate significant improvement to skin firmness, elasticity, and hydration when used in conjunction with 5% vitamin C, and reduce the likelihood of developing stretch marks in pregnant woman (source). There is also some promising in vitro research that madecassoide may inhibit UV-induced melanin synthesis (i.e. tanning) and that centella asiatica extract could protect DNA from ultraviolet light induced damage.
The science is obviously there so why doesn’t this toner work? My (uneducated) theory is that there’s just not enough of the active compounds in this toner. The most pharmacologically active compounds mentioned above are just some of the centelloids that centella asiatica contains. Others include brahmic acid, madasiatic acid, terminolic acid, and centellic acid. All of these centelloids together make up only 1% – 8% of the things in a centella asiatica plant. A lot of the research on centella asiatica use very specific extracts. For example, the first benefit mentioned in the paragraph above was based on a total triterpenic fraction extract of centella asiatica, which apparently means this extract comprises 60% asiatic acid and madecassic acid as well as 40% asiaticosides.
From this, it seems like using centella asiatica extract for its active components is akin to using kiwi extract for its vitamin C – you probably do still get some of the benefits, but it’s not going to be on par with the results you get from a product containing purified ascorbic acid. Moreover, this toner is actually mostly (82%) mineral water and only contains 10% centella asiatica leaf water, so whatever benefits the centella asiatica compounds are producing are even further diluted. There are products that do contain clinically studied extracts of centella asiatica though – Madecassol, for example, is a Korean scar-prevention cream that contains a specific titrated extract of centella asiatica.
I have inflammatory acne on my face that tends to leave behind a lot of hyperpigmentation after it heals. Because of the anti-inflammatory and general healing properties of centella asiatica, I was hoping this toner would have a positive effect on my acne.
The ingredients, which are few and clean, are as follows:
Mineral Water, Centella Asiatica Leaf Water , Butylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Betaine, Panthenol, Allantoin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ethyl Hexanediol
Unfortunately, I am halfway through my bottle of toner and I can’t really say that it’s done anything. In fact, if someone had dumped out the actual toner and replaced it with tap water, I would not be able to tell. I do plan on finishing this toner – I use this to mist my skin before applying serums and creams – applying skincare products to damp skin allegedly helps the ingredients absorb – but again, I feel like bottled water would suffice just as well.
The Bottom Line
Harmless but ultimately very boring skin mist. Skip this one.
Disclosure: Product paid for by me. Affiliate links. See my full disclosure policy here.
I picked this up on an Avecko haul (along with the water cream) a few months ago but still haven’t quite decided how I feel about it, hence the lack of review. In many ways, this is one of the best mists I’ved used. Yet, there’s one big caveat that deters me from using it, but more on that later!