Ok I saw Ange’s post and got super duper excited and I’m on vacation so I can post 15 reviews if I wanna!
As part of “field research” for this blog I bought TWO skin care sets from Artland inside the San Gabriel Superstore in LA area: The History of Whoo and the other by PURETEM. Both are from South Korea and have a long list of (mostly natural) ingredients that sound like a botanist’s wet dream. Similar to dogs that can sense epileptic seizures, strange and exotic ingredients in cosmetics can work in inexplicable ways…
I will review The History of Whoo first, since it seems to be the fancy pantsy equivalent to La Mer and I’m giddy at looking at the miniature gift set. Korean cosmetics feel like bargains because you get more products at a relatively reasonable price, including lovely travel sets of miniature bottles. However, some of the high end stuff are in the same price range as La Mer or La Prairie. Thus…I am prone to thinking they are more effective because the Korean Olay equivalents are around $10 a pop.
The History of Whoo Gongjinhyang Skin Care Lotion.
I bought the lotion and received the miniature set for “free”. Yeah it doesn’t feel free because the lotion bottle costs $85. But from the rare and exotic list of ingredients, I decided that it’s probably worth it. From what I read on other blogs (http://sulwhasoo-sulwhasoo.blogspot.com/2011/01/history-of-whoo-gongjinhyang-review.html) it is a great line for us 30-something-year-old women.
The “free” set is below. It’s about 1/2 oz each by my unscientific eyeball measurement. The order of operation is:
3. Left most item is the “In Yang” lotion for morning time. You put this on 3rd
1. Second Left item is the “In Yang Balance” which is like a toner. You put this on 1st
2. Third Left item is the Qi & Jin Essence which is like a serum. You put this on 2nd
4. Top Right item is the eye cream. You put this on whenever, maybe last.
3. Bottom Right item is the night cream. You put this on 3rd at night.
I followed these steps after applying my oil cleanser and AHA/BHA cleanser. First time use is not enough data points but it’s the right consistency, did not feel greasy, and absorbed very fast into my skin. Right away my skin is dewy. I’m happy that my skin is drinking fabulous deer antler, snow lotus, and wild ginseng. Eat my little one…..eaaaaat.
Here’s a closeup of the lotion which is NOT a bad deal for $85 (it’s 110mL which is ~3 oz). I’ll come back and update when there’s enough time to determine how well it’s working.
Contrary to my expectations, the girl at the Asian cosmetic store was relatively helpful and offered many awesome samples and explained to me the ingredients and regimen (prolly cuz I dropped some bones on these cosmetics). I only felt a little ripped-off, not ragingly pissed and robbed like I usually do when I deal with Asian salespeople at these malls.
This is me right after. Yeah yeah I know, smartasses, this isn’t enough time to tell but I just wanna give you a #selfie for free mmkay?
Pros: mostly natural exotic (expensive) extracts in copious amounts. This is a nice brag compared to Western brands that tout “with Eternal Youth extract” and Eternal Youth is at the bottom in 0.000001% concentration. My skin soaked the lotion up immediately. Nice consistency. English ingredient labels (this is key because I am allergic to about 15 ingredients in most products, no joke).
Cons: Expensive. Confusing regimen marked in Korean language. Some of this natural stuff can combine to make a potent allergen which nobody knows about. We’ll see. The lotion itself is very thick. It’s not greasy but definitely a heavier type of face lotion which can be bad for people with oily skin.
UPDATE: RUN don’t walk, to get this entire line. I’m researching to see how I can obtain the set for cheap. It’s very costly to get the balancer ($71), essence ($150,) day cream ($85, I already have,) night cream ($198,) and eye cream ($143.) On Amazon it’s cheaper but I’m not sure if we’re getting expired items from Asia.
Anyway, after about a few weeks of use (the trial set is supposed to last 30 days but I ran out of the serum after about 3 weeks,) my skin is firmer, tighter, moisturized, bouncy, and silky smooth. I have a small series of stubborn whitish bumps along my jawline, a condition called sebaceous hyperplasia. These bumps diminished substantially. Frequently when I get off this regime to try another line, the bumps would basically come back. The entire line seems to work extremely well together, but not so much separately, which is a small drawback. But I think this has been the most effective skin care line I’ve tried thus far. Seriously I should just stick to this for life, but soooo many products to try (even if they don’t work as well.)