I’m Mall In: Review of Riley Rose, Sephora for Kbeauty

Rile you were sleeping, a new player arrived on the Kbeauty scene.

Enter from outside or inside the mall

When I first heard about Riley Rose, it sounded like a Sephora for millennials. What I didn’t realize until I visited the store at Glendale Galleria (a Los Angeles mall): Riley Rose has a TON of Kbeauty brands that can’t be found in a brick-and-mortar elsewhere.

So it’s more like Sephora for Kbeauty. LOVE. Continue reading “I’m Mall In: Review of Riley Rose, Sephora for Kbeauty”

Orange Is the New White: Murad City Skin Age Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA++++ Review

Oh hai, PA++++ sunscreen made by a Western brand!  *heart-eyes emoji*  Murad City Skin Age Defense SPF 50 PA++++ sunscreen was released last spring and I was immediately drawn by the PA rating.

PA ratings are almost unheard of for American sunscreens.  In the U.S., PA labeling isn’t required, widely understood, or regulated, so naturally companies have no incentive to advertise PA ratings, much less formulate for the highest rating.  But for us Asian beauty fans and serious skincare addicts, we know that PA++++ is preferable for preventing tanning and sunspots from UVA exposure.

I had high hopes for this all-physical sunscreen (2.7% titanium dioxide, 10% zinc oxide) because it claimed to leave no white cast, but the title of this post–Orange Is the New White–should serve as ominous foreshadowing.

Continue reading “Orange Is the New White: Murad City Skin Age Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA++++ Review”

Bee Mine: Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Cream Review

Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Cream is like the famous Vita Propolis Ampoule in light cream form. Radiant glow? Check. Wraps skin in hydrating propolis extract? Check.

Note: This jar (provided for review by the brand) is the older packaging with the former name, Leejiham Vita Propolis Cream. Glow Recipe still uses this name and you’ll probably find more reviews under the old name. Continue reading “Bee Mine: Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Cream Review”

Purrrrple Mane Purrple Mane – Dyeing (and Keeping) Asian Hair Platinum Blonde

To start the new-ish 2018 year, I decided to lighten up. REALLY lighten up. So I went from ombre brownish gold to just…blonde. As in Khaleesi blonde. As Asian hair sucks ass to color, and doesn’t retain the color, I sat in a salon chair from 2:30PM-8:30PM. Below is a “BEFORE” of my brassy balayage/ombre ‘do.

As my parents have owned beauty salons for over 10 years, I came in with realistic expectations. To turn brown into light blonde, especially closer to the roots, you have to color for hours and hours. First hair is bleached, slowly, then the blonde shade is applied. It is NOT single processing. Often during processing, the hair color comes out in patches and super uneven. If the developer is too strong, your hair will be super brittle. If it’s too weak, it won’t lift the shades light enough.

I went to an Asian hair salon (Hair Philosophy @hairphilosophynyc) and relied on my fabulous & talented Effie Lei (@hair_by_effie) (please don’t poach her and book up all my appointments m*f*ckers!).

And goddamn she did a great job: Continue reading “Purrrrple Mane Purrple Mane – Dyeing (and Keeping) Asian Hair Platinum Blonde”

Who Nose: Farmacy Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm Review

Why do I love Farmacy Green Clean AND why will I not repurchase?

The scent.

After sniffing 4 tubs of this cleansing balm, I concluded that the scent (the true joy factor) is extremely inconsistent from batch to batch. With an unreliable joy factor, this is just not worth the risk to buy.


I actually loved this on first smell when Bella Noir Beauty (her review here) let me try hers after raving about the scent: key lime pie mixed with heaven. Throw in the creamy lime color, and there was SO MUCH JOY that I resolved to buy this the next time I needed to restock cleansing balm. I also recommended this to a few of you during the fall Sephora sale based on pure yumminess. Continue reading “Who Nose: Farmacy Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm Review”

Glow for the Gold: Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Ampoule Review

Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Ampoule is an old favorite with a new name. I first used it 3+ years ago, practically an eternity for a skincare addict. It’s about time I shared my love for it. (This particular bottle was sent by the brand, but I’ve purchased multiple bottles on my own.)

It’s a splurge (a TINY 15ml for $23 at Target(!) and $38 at Glow Recipe), but can you really put a price on liquid glow, er, gold?

Continue reading “Glow for the Gold: Leegeehaam Grow Vita Propolis Ampoule Review”

Got the Blues: NIOD CAIS Review & CAIS2 First Look

I got the blues…and I’m happy about it.

Blue skincare is one of my obsessions. Most often, blue is associated with anti-inflammatory azulene (from blue chamomile) or with skin-regenerating copper peptides (not to be confused with copper metal).

My latest obsession, NIOD Copper Amino Isolate Serum (aka CAIS), falls into the latter category. Can you blame me for loving it? It’s like gazing upon a sea of hopes and dreams.

Apr. 12, 2018 Update: Does all the tea about Brandon Truaxe have you looking for alternatives? CAIS is wonderful but expensive and hardly irreplaceable. There are cheaper and sometimes even better alternatives.

Personally, I’m switching to Skin Biology 7% GHK-Cu Accelerant to make my own BLUE stuphs (incidentally one of their few copper peptide products that doesn’t smell funky). Bioderma Matricium is faster at repairing a damaged moisture barrier. Leegeehaam Tea Tree 90 Essence is as effective at reducing redness and inflammation with consistent use. BONAIR Blue Smoother Face Oil is BLUE, features fermented blue tansy oil, and nourishes and reduces inflammation in one step (read mah review). I haven’t tried it myself, but Klairs Midnight Blue Youth Activating Drop is also BLUE and gets great reviews (including in the comments on this post) for healing skin.

And lists of alternatives are popping up on Reddit /r/skincareaddiction and elsewhere (hi, Nourish the Skin!). Mmmkay, back to the review…

Continue reading “Got the Blues: NIOD CAIS Review & CAIS2 First Look”

Catte Fancy: Paul and Joe Sister Anatole Cape Review

The pawpularity of feline fashun is undeniable. At the furfront of this trend is Paul & Joe Sister, which needs no introduction to us CATTE LADIES. We’ve been fans of the Purrisian label’s catte-themed threads longer than this blog has existed.

Pssst…Through Nov. 30, 2017, use coupon code PVTS25 for 25% off the whole Paul & Joe Sister site!

It’s the “more affurdable” sister brand of Paul & Joe (luxury staple brand of Paris fashun week) and cousin of catsmetics line Paul & Joe Beauté (check out Renee’s collection here and here).

Continue reading “Catte Fancy: Paul and Joe Sister Anatole Cape Review”