skincare // 18 aug 2016

I tried adding new products to my skincare routine a few times, but I keep going back to the basics. Not so much because I want to be a minimalist (though I’d honestly love to keep things simple) but because unfortunately new products break me out eventually.

So here is my current routine:

1) CLEANSER: Cetaphil – It’s not really my fave, and I’m not sure if it does anything good to my skin. In fact, it might even be giving me negligible closed comedones or sebaceous filaments. But I am in need of a cleanser that doesn’t do anything on my skin aside from cleansing. The cleansers I’ve used before has stuff like salicylic acid and all that jazz which I simply don’t need. They dry my skin out. Cetaphil is just available everywhere so it’s my go-to, but let’s see. Maybe I’ll switch to something else eventually.

2) TONER: Biologique Recherche P50 – I love this so much. I still get whiteheads and closed comedones every now and then (when I get too tired to wash my face after a day of makeup, or try a product that breaks me out), but this just exfoliates my skin well. My skin is not perfect but ever since I’ve used this, I never needed to have a facial anymore. It also gives me a slight dewy effect on my cheekbones.

3) MOISTURISER: Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Gel – An easy-to-apply moisturiser that does its job without leaving a greasy feel. You’d think that’s easy to find, but it’s not. This moisturiser is on the expensive side, and it doesn’t have any plumping properties but there’s a good reason why I (and thousands!) keep going back to this.

4) EYE CREAM: Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye – There’s not much to say about this for now, but I’ll keep using it and see if it’s worth keeping.


Forgot to include the eye cream! Also, it’s clear that I’m about to run out of these.

So, these products are all I’m using for now, but here are skincare products I’d like to try soon:

  • C21.5 Vitamin C Serum
  • GOW Passionfruit Seed Oil
  • Laneige Water Sleeping Pack

I already have the passionfruit seed oil, but I’m still waiting for the right time to use it. Maybe a couple weeks from now.


mini review: hada labo shirojyun arbutin lotion

In search of a lightening face product, I bought this lotion. Hada Labo calls it a “lotion” but it doesn’t have a creamy texture. In my understanding, the Japanese call their toners “lotions” and their moisturisers “milk.” It can be confusing so make sure you’re getting the right product.

Picked this item specifically for its arbutin and MAP (magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, a stable derivative of Vitamin C) content, two lightening/brightening powerhouses. I had previously used a generic arbutin cream and another Vitamin C product with success so I can vouch for the efficacy of these ingredients when it comes to lightening/brightening.

Within a week of use, it changed my skin. It brightened my face, but in an artificial sort of way. It gave me this glossy plasticky shine on my forehead that makes it look like I have a layer of plastic on my face. It’s not necessarily bad, but it was unnatural. Looked like I had an oily forehead, except there was no oil and it was squeaky to the feel. The last time I experienced this was with Stridex in the red box.

The bigger bummer was that with such a short ingredient list, this lotion still managed to break me out. It gave me whiteheads on my forehead – only on my forehead, none elsewhere. I read that somebody else experienced the same thing, too.

In terms of application, this product feels tacky and a bit sticky. It always goes away within a couple minutes, though, so it’s not a big issue. It also has the texture of sticky water and I find that it adds hydration to the skin, but just a tiny bit.

A tip when you look for this product: You will find that some merchants use “albutin” instead of “arbutin.” It’s the same thing. The Japanese just don’t use “R” in their language sometimes; they change it to “L”.