Review: SKII Facial Treatment Mask

May 18, 2012
Heard of people applying this mask right before makeup every morning?

Heard of people bringing this mask during travel for DIY in-flight facial spa treatment?

Heard of people using this mask for 14 or 28 days consecutively to become most beautiful bride?

Guess what is my secret with SKII Facial Treatment Mask?

It was the ONLY skin care item I packed into my hospital bag during my delivery back in 2009. Sounds crazy isn't it?!! After almost 20 hours of painful labour process, the first thing popped up in my mind (of course after doctor cleaned up the mess and handed over my lovely boy into the good hands of kind nurses), was to put on a piece of my favorite Facial Treatment Mask and sleep!!

The next morning when my friends came to visit me, despite waking up a few times during midnight to breastfeed my newborn, almost everyone commented that I was glowing and I did not look exhausted at all. That was truly a great compliment!!

I know there are many different brands of facial masks in same kind of sheet form in the market, some are extremely cheap and some are about the same price, or even more expensive than SKII Facial Treatment Mask. But so far, from all those I've tried (I was testing out 美容大王大S' method of 1 piece of sheet mask per day, hence I stocked up more than 50 pieces of masks from different brands), none of them can really deliver same, or even similar result as SKII Facial Treatment Mask.

One thing I love most about this mask, is that it does not cause any irritation on my relatively sensitive skin at all, even if I wear it to sleep for a whole night. Because 3 out of 5 other brands of masks I use, usually gives me a tinging feeling. The gel essence is rich in texture, and I always see some remaining essence in the packet which i will pour out and apply on my neck and body.

A small tip to share although I do not do this anymore nowadays. If you apply this mask for 15 minutes only, while the mask is still wet with loads of Pitera essence,  put it back into the packet, seal it up and store it inside your fridge, the next time when you bring it out, add in a bit of mineral water till the sheet mask is all wet, and re-use it again. The result is not as brilliant as first time usage for sure but it's just so economical with minimum wastage of their signature Pitera!!! Of course I stopped doing it nowadays due to hygienic concerns, when the mask gets more affordable to me (yup 10 years of usages => more stable financial status, LOL)..

I am not sure the result from this mask can last for how long, but at least for the next 1-2 days after usage, applying makeup is such an easier and quicker task. The skin feels so radiant, hydrated and rejuvenated. I really couldn't find any downside of this mask and as long as finances allows, it will remain as my TOP #1 product to be restocked every time!!

Rating: 9/10
Box of 6 or 10 pieces

Review: SKII Cellumination Mask-In Lotion

May 16, 2012
I bought this product in April for a simple purpose of trying out new item from my favorite SKII range. I was super excited about it since SKII is pretty focused with their basic / special care product line and they do not really launch new products as frequently as most other brands. I meant you can easily find 3-4 basic skin care range of products from LANCOME or CLINIQUE which target at dry, oily, combination or aged skin separately. But for SKII, it's more like one range suits all kind of skins.

From their official website, this product is introduced as a toner. "This unique everyday lotion delivers a mask-like experience on top of its skin conditioning function. It provides intensive moisturisation while boosting skin’s Aura- Lucency, delivering hydration and whitening benefits to the skin."

I was told to use this before SKII Facial Treatment Essence as it has a double cleanse effect to remove dead skin cells and brighten up the skin. Just use a few drops and pat over the face, or pour the fluid onto cotton pad and wipe the whole face with it. The texture is thicker than a toner, in fact even thicker than the Facial Treatment Essence, but non-sticky at all, and indeed it's super hydrating. The smell is so fragrant that I even wonder if it's a product from SKII, as I can't find a trace of sour Pitera smell in it.

To say that by simply applying this lotion gives a "mask-like experience" is an extravagant praise in my humble opinion. Instead of using it as a normal toner or lotion, I found it the most effective and suitable product to be used with 佐伯千津's "3 minutes facial mask using cotton pad soaked in any kind of toner" method. Of course that means I need to use a more generous amount of Cellumination Mask-In Lotion to soak the cotton pad thoroughly first, then split the cotton pad to a few pieces and place them on my face for at least 3 minutes. After all it is still cheaper than using their signature SKII Facial Treatment Mask but I do prefer this lotion because you can control the amount of it being used every time. Whereas for the Facial Treatment Mask (will do a review), I often find overdoes of fluids in every pack, which is a kind of waste, although the result is definitely more significant and the experience of using the mask is way more luxurious for sure!! The hydrating effect from Cellumination Mask-In Lotion is pretty long lasting, and my skin feels so radiant, supple and crystal clear instantly. Now it's not hard to figure why it's called "Mask-in Lotion" and yes, I do achieve a similar effect as I just had a mask!!

So I love to use it at night, if I am lazy and just want to apply one and only one skin care product before I go to bed. Or use it in the morning as a hydrating serum, it's a perfect substitute for the 2 serums I reviewed in the past: SKII Aqua Physics Serum or COSME DECORTE Moisture Liposome

Rating: 8.5/10
100ml / SGD$114

Review: Totalife vs. Herbalife, and.. 大麥若葉/青汁

May 11, 2012
I am not quite sure about how to kick start on this topic, as this is not 100% skin care related. Anyway I've been having a need to lose weight for the past 20 years. I am not extremely fat, but slightly over weight during most of my life time. I've tried many ways to slim down and I would really love to share with my readers on these 2, and only 2 methods which worked for me so far.

1. Eat less, exercise a little (French women's way of diet) - I managed to lose about 6kg in 2 months by reducing food intake to 700 - 1100 calories a day, with very little workout like stretching and aerobics. I will probably share more about this French women's way of diet in a few months time, if I could successfully lose all my excess weight gained during my pregnancy this time.

2. Nutritional Food Replacement Meal -  I managed to lose about 4-5kg a month with TOTALIFE and about 2kg a month with HERBALIFE in the past. So let me share more about these kind of food replacement meal here.

I was introduced to this brand by an ex-colleague in 2005, and joined as a distributor after seeing pretty remarkable result from her weight loss program with TOTALIFE. There are a whole range of weight management products to choose from but I mainly used TOTALIFE Total-Diet 8 Plus + Total salt + Total sweet, and Lipoleen A + B when I tried it for the first time. The effect is pretty promising as I managed to lose almost 5kg within the first month. I stopped it due to 2 reasons. First thing is, it's super expensive. A week's supply cost me about SGD$190 back then and I am sure it's getting more expensive nowadays. Second reason is because I hit my bottleneck after one month and my weight was not going down anymore. So eventually I stopped this product for almost 2 years and tried it again, this time with only Total-Diet 8 Plus + Total salt + Total sweet in 2007 before my wedding. The result was not as obvious, just 1-2kg loss in a month but I could feel that my body is more toned up. Then in 2009, after I delivered my lovely son, I used TOTALIFE again to help me lose about 4kg in 2 months time. The only drawback of TOTALIFE product, is that I still feel hungry easily and the taste of the powder mix is not that appetizing.

Overall I think it's the most effective "slimming product" I've ever tried. What I love most about TOTALIFE is that, it helps me to slim down my whole body, including my limbs. Not like most of the slimming products which mainly target on tummy, hip and thigh area. And it's a nutritional product that helped me maintain a healthy body without any side effect. My digestive system is forever so healthy ever since I started Totalife, and even after I stopped using it for years. And if you are in a hurry to lose weight for whatever reason, I think it's a great product to start with, especially for those with high BMI and find it hard to shed away the fats easily and rapidly, it will help to lose a few kg in short period of time, so that you will have confidence to slim down further and maintain through other healthier methods like cutting down food intake or doing more exercise.

I heard about this brand way more before I tried TOTALIFE, but back then I wasn't really convinced by MLM products. The concept is almost the same as TOTALIFE but their Formula 1 mix shake definitely tastes better than TOTALIFE Total Diet-8 plus, and I feel more filling after taking it as a meal replacement. Effect wise, it's really not as obvious, as I do not have much bowel movement like the time when I took TOTALIFE products. And I remember many of my friends kept commenting that I look slimmer while I took TOTALIFE products, but when I was on HERBALIFE, I could only convince myself that I am slimming down when I stood on a weighing scale, but I only manage to lose about 2-3kg in 6 weeks time. Of course HERBALIFE is way more affordable, I just need to spend around SGD300 for about 2 months of supply.

Now let me introduce something interesting here, 大麥若葉
大麥若葉 is a  popular product from Japan, being widely used to supplement insufficient daily vegetable intake. It's a combination of barley green grass and some other type of vegetables like spinach in a powder form. I think FANCL has some similar product like this. I got mine from the Japanese supermarket at Isetan Scotts Shopping Center. The taste is not very pleasant, but for me who's always trying out different weight management products, I've tasted something a lot worse for sure. LOL..

Some people said it helps in weight loss, I am not sure about that but after taking 2 sachets daily with water, I am surprised to notice that it works almost the same way like TOTALIFE & HERBALIFE on me. It helps to detoxify my body and I am having 2-3 times bowel movements (instead of 1-2 times daily), with light colored and smooth surface stool (sorry a bit gross).. Also if I take this after a heavy meal, I feel less bloated immediately, and if I take it before meal, usually I won't eat as much, because I already feel quite filling before food.

I am not giving any rating for these products as I believe all of them are great supplements to add to our daily healthy, beauty or slimming regime, as long as you have the budget. Bcause we are definitely not able to get enough nutrients from the food we eat daily. And all these products help to promote skin clarity by maintaining and balancing a healthy digestive and intestinal environment.

空瓶記: 2012年5月

May 10, 2012

我似乎有永遠用不完的護膚品, 所以決定每幾個月堅持記錄一下用完的瓶瓶罐罐。 也提醒一下自己其實還有很多存貨,不用急於購買新的產品呢。

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Anti-Age Spot Serum
只記得好貴,味道是非常高雅的香氣。 塗在臉上的感覺稍微有一點點粘。 效果就真的沒怎麼看出來。 其實多數美白產品都很難評估其效果的,我都不會太執著,就是有用有保疪的心態罷了。



SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion
詳細評論過的絕對好物。 用完了個sample, 決定把手上所有的sample用完后就再買個正裝了。 實在是有用它不覺得寶貝,沒用它卻會時常想念的產品呢。



SKII Aqua Physics
漿糊,絕對的漿糊。 用了這個再用什麽產品都會面對“搓泥”的命運。 實在不知道這個東西是做什麼用的。用完了皮膚悶悶的,有時候甚至會粘到整個皮膚發癢。



SKII Aqua Physics Serum
也曾經寫過評論。應該是時候尋找替代品了。 不過暫時沒有保濕精華,皮膚狀態也還好。畢竟新加坡又熱又潮濕,對於保濕,做好基本功夫就好了。



Review: SKII Facial Treatment Essence

May 7, 2012
I remember one of SKII's spokenpersons QiQi mentioned in the advertisement about using Facial Treatment Essence for 10 years when I first got to know this product (well this brand actually), I was like wow, that's a really long time!!! And without me noticing it, I've been using this legendary "miracle water" for more than 10 years also!

I am sure everyone has heard about the interesting story of SKII, or rather "Pitera". Back in 1970s, a chance observation of soft and youthful hands of sake brewers in Japan, inspired the research into the yeast fermentation process. And "Pitera" is discovered as the secret ingredient of rice yeast that keeps the skin crystal clear. Facial Treatment Essence is their star product which contains a whooping 90% of Pitera!!

I couldn't express enough about how much I love this product!! It's not something that works overnight like miracle, but I assure you that if you stop using it, you will miss it immediately as you can feel the change in skin texture immediately. Many people might think it is a toner, but indeed it is an essence with a toner like texture, that keeps your skin's natural pH balance,  you should use another toner - SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion before this miracle water for best result.

This essence has a strong sour scent, which often reminds me about the smell of ink used in Chinese calligraphy. Not pleasant for sure but I am very used to it after all these years. Upon usage, I do not notice any immediate difference on my skin but after a few days, I can tell that my skin is definitely softer, smoother, brighter, more radiant and looks healthier for sure.

There are 2 ways to apply this essence, either just splash some liquid onto the palm and dab on the face till it is fully absorbed, or soak a cotton pad in it and pat over the whole face gently. I don't really have any preference on the way to apply it, usually when I am in a rush, I use my hands to apply as I have this habit to pat all kinds of skincare products onto my face, for better absorption and blood circulation. On certain days when I am in the mood, well indeed when I feel more dehydrated, I will soak a cotton pad in more essence, pat on my whole face, and then split the cotton pad into 2 pieces, and put on my cheeks for about 3 minutes. I learned this method from a Japanese beauty expert 佐伯千津, who introduced the "3 minutes facial mask using cotton pad soaked in any kind of toner" method, in this case, I use the Facial Treatment Essence. It helps to deeply hydrate the skin and promotes better absorption of skin care products applied after that. And putting this essence on spots and blotches does help in faster recovery without leaving an ugly acne mark.

One more tip for using this essence in our hot and humid Singapore weather, is to store the Facial Treatment Essence in the fridge, I used to have a small fridge for my skin care products. It makes the essence more cooling and less smelly.

After years of usage, I still love this product for its amazing effect on balancing up both the oily and dehydrated areas on my face. But I do know some friends who get frequent breakouts from using it, so the best advice I can give, is still to try out a sample before investing on it since the price is not cheap at all. Maybe SKII Facial Treatment Essence is really more suitable for oily to combination skin, just like mine...

Rating: 10/10
Comes in different sizes and I lost track on the price nowadays... (probably the only product I will keep on restocking without even looking at the price)

Review: SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion

May 6, 2012
I've mentioned a little bit about the importance of double cleansing, in one of my earlier post about SHU UMEURA's Skin Purifier cleansing oil. In the past I've always thought it is not necessary to do that and I never find SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion a product worth investing on because it seems to be just another toner, and with SKII Facial Treatment Essence which has almost the exact same texture like toner, I seriously doubt why do I need this Clear Lotion.

But I found my concept completely wrong when the sales consultant once showed me how effective this toner works especially for double cleansing.

First, Look at the picture below, I wiped my left hand using SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion, well many people might not be able to tell much difference here with naked eyes. But I can see, and feel that my skin is extremely clean and it feels like my pores have all opened up. It does looks fairer and brighter than my right hand skin.
Now, let's have a look at what happened when I apply my SKII Facial Treatment Essence after using this toner. You can see from the picture below, on the left, my essence stays on the surface of my skin and flows around when I did not apply the Clear Lotion before using my essence. Whereas from the right side of the picture (which is my left hand that I wiped thoroughly with Clear Lotion earlier on), half of the essence (indeed I poured more essence on this hand) has already been absorbed in before I even pat my hand dry, if you do understand what I meant here.
Since then, I swear by this product and have bought one full sized bottle so far. Well I've been surviving on their samples for quite a long time, interestingly SKII always include this product in their gift with purchase pack. Now you can imagine how much SKII products I've stocked up throughout the past years, in order to get "unlimited supply" of my Clear Lotion...

Rating: 9/10
I will update the price again when I get my next bottle, soon...

Review: ELIZABETH ARDEN Ceramide Capsules

May 3, 2012
I bought this pot of gold capsules a year ago from Changi Airport, the full name is called ELIZABETH ARDEN Ceramide Gold Ultra Restorative Capsules Intensive Treatment for Face and Throat.. *Phew* that's a long one.. Ok at airport duty free shop, they usually have this promotion of "purchase with purchase", meaning that with purchase of any cosmetic product, you can purchase this item at SGD$39. The retail price should be at least SGD$68 but I am not very sure. They do have a set of 3 boxes selling at SGD$127 if I remember correctly which is pretty worthwhile too!

I finally opened it up a few weeks ago after reading some pretty good reviews online. The interesting part it, I thought this is purely a skincare product, which supposed to support natural collagen levels of skin, and minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. But from this famous blog here (if you can read Chinese), I read a post about using it before makeup to set the foundation nicely.

For the effect, I am not so sure about how good it is in terms of anti-aging, since I've been using it in the morning most of the time, and I haven't seen any visible improvement on my skin so far. But one thing for sure, if you are traveling, this is a perfect solution for your daily skincare regime. Why? It's just so easy to bring a few capsules, and you can even use it right after cleansing your face, no toner, no serum, no moisturizer needed, I am not kidding...

Twist it open and smooth the content onto face, and neck, lightly massage till it's completely absorbed into the skin. It looks oily and shiny at first but not greasy at all, and after massaging gently for a little while, you can see a totally smooth and firm skin without any oil. I am amazed by how effective it keeps my oily/combination skin totally mat all day long!! And it feels so easy to apply my 2 way cake after that. My skin looks radiant and smooth and most importantly, oil-free!! My make up really lasts longer throughout the day, and I must say it beats all my expensive, well known makeup base/premier in every possible aspect!

There are 30 capsules in a pot and if you use one daily, it's going to last for a month. Keep it in cool and dry place, or else, after 1 year, it might look like this in our hot and humid Singapore weather, gross right?!! But still can be used (tested and proven).. LOL..

Rating: 8/10
30 Capsules / SGD$39 ("purchase with purchase" at Changi airport)