BNTGirls Review: isoi Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream*

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isoi Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream

One of the exciting things that happened to me in Korea was actually seeing the brands being sold in stores like Olive Young or Watsons, or seeing physical single shops like the isoi shop in Ewha. Many of the brands I have tried for BNT Girls aren’t out in the actual Manila market, so it was kind of a fun experience, seeing them in the flesh.

isoi Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream - Tub

The i’m SO intelligent Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream* would actually have been so perfect for that cold, windy afternoon we spent at Ewha. My fingers literally felt like they were going to fall off.

This cream is an anti-aging product that aims to solve all aging issues. It contains 25 different natural ingredients, all to help lift saggy skin, whiten, and moisturize dry skin. The end goal for this product is to bring back the original vitality of the skin and to aid the skin’s regenerative ability.

isoi Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream - Swatch

Since the cream is so thick, it’s meant to be used as the last step of the basic skin care process, applied to the face and neck. For more moisture, it can be mixed with the Energizing Oil from the same line, and used as a sleeping pack. The tub comes with a spatula, which helps with keeping the cream as pristine as humanly possible.

isoi Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream - Thick Cream

Despite water making up the majority of the formula, this cream is thick. I was so shocked—a dollop was enough to cover the whole face and neck. The cream is a little heavy for use in the day here in Manila, but like I said, it would have been perfect for when I was in Seoul.

isoi’s “core technology” relies on natural ingredients instead of the harmful chemical ingredients usually found in most luxury cosmetics. The cream includes many oils (including squalane, sigh°) and natural extracts.


What ever the case may be, the Bulgarian Rose Intensive Energizing Cream is a great companion for the drier months to come!

° Note:

Although I have no confirmation that isoi in particular sources its squalane through ethical means, a company based in California called Amyris, Inc. has been selling commercial quantities of squalane derived from yeast to the Republic of Korea. (source)

I sent them an email about a week ago to ask. Currently waiting for a (favorable!) response. One can only hope.

Say hello to the bntgirls official badge! * PR Sample. Product was sampled and reviewed as part of the terms outlined for the BNT Girls.

Other BNT Girls: Joanne, Kine, Doris, Bella.

I have no information regarding isoi’s animal testing policy.

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A Convergence of Purples

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Purples Header - OCC Lydia, NARS Dominique, Kat Von D Wonderchilde, ILIA Ink Pot, MAKE Jakarta, OCC Pagan, Shiro Sad Keanu

Once upon a time, I convinced myself that I would never look good in purple lipstick, and that I would never, ever want to wear it, ever. Somehow, I got it into my head that all purple lips did to people was make them look witchy. Well. Times have changed.

Purples - OCC Lydia, NARS Dominique, Kat Von D Wonderchilde, ILIA Ink Pot, MAKE Jakarta, OCC Pagan, Shiro Sad Keanu

Here are various types of purples, some leaning more pink or red or blue than others, but all are—to me—purple, as far as colors go. (Don’t mind Sad Keanu in that clam shell… it looks gross, but it’s fine.) Read More

BNTGirls Review: Doctorcos Next Generation Blocker*

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Doctorcos Next Generation Block

You guys, I’m so excited for this.

Even though I went through an obsessive Googling period, so I could see more information on the Doctorcos Next Generation Blocker* and came up with nothing but links to the ever-popular Sheet Free Mask, it still couldn’t damper the excitement I have for this product.

It’s just sunscreen, sure, but it’s a Korean liquid, spray-on SPF 30 PA++ and I maintain that Korean and Japanese sunscreens are way better than Western counterparts (sorry). At least in blocking out the UV rays.


I slathered on more sunscreen I had in my life during the six weeks I was in the States in the fall and I still got several shades darker. I used an American brand, and that is the extent of the basis for my opinion. And also according to the blogs of people I like. SCIENCE!


Doctorcos Next Generation Block - Spray

This “new generation sunblock” does its job of keeping out the UV rays (for a long time), but also contains highly pure proteins for skin activation and protection. All without getting you sticky or irritated. Read More

Super Fave: 3CE Gel Eye Liners

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Favorite Things / Reviews
3CE Gel Eye Liner

Hey, all! I thought I’d surprise you guys with a post dipping into my Korea shappeeeen disaster haul starting with these beautiful gel liners from Stylenanda’s cosmetics arm, 3CE or 3 Concept Eyes.

(Speaking of hauls, is that something you’d be interested in seeing? I’m thinking of filming a video, but I’m not sure if people are into that. Let me know!)

3CE StyleNanda Hongdae

I recently called 3CE (or 3 Concept Eyes) my happy place and this is a preview of why that is. I had to tear myself away from Seoul because I wanted to buy all of the 3CE Gel Eye Liners (among other things…), and I’m a little proud of myself for settling on just two. Read More

BNTGirls Review: Hongik Skin Oh! Real Oh Bubble The Hayan GT-Cleanser*

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Hongik Skin Foaming Cleanser

The Hongik Skin Oh! Real Oh Bubble The Hayan GT-Cleanser* (or Yeoin Yeo Dduianal Woo—which translates to Whiter Admiration Cleanser—Real Oh Bubble The Hayan GT-Cleanser, as the box says in English) is a luxurious cream that foams into a moisture-rich lather to gently clean, calm, and soften skin, to “reveal skin’s youthful angelic glow.”

This cleanser has three main functions: pore tightening, deep cleansing, and whitening.

Hongik Skin Foaming Cleanser - Pump

The bottle is super cute and clear, showing you just how much product is left. There is a surprising weight to it. The product is dispensed through a pump, as with most foaming products, which is easy to use. I found this bubbly surprise the day after I first used it.

Screen Shot 2014-11-18 at 3.52.56 PM

It contains mung bean, soybean, coconut, papaya fruit, and other plant extracts. These make it moisturizing, despite being a foaming cleanser.

Mung bean is used for exfoliation and to help with acne scarring. Topical application of soy bean extract has been tested to improve the “skin’s mottled pigmentation, blotchiness, dullness, fine lines, overall texture, overall skin tone, and overall appearance.” Moss rose is used for skin irritation. Saccharina japonica, a type of seaweed, is believed to give the skin a “silky smoothness.”

Hongik Skin Foaming Cleanser - Prodcut Swatch

It also has a fluorine compound that creates oxygen-laden foam when it comes into contact with skin. The foaming sensation removes dead skin cells, resulting in brighter skin. The creams works itself into a lather once you rub it on your skin, not needing the help of water, like conventional soaps. The main hook of this cleanser seems to be that its surfactants (or the things in your soap that lets water remove the dirt) are natural instead of chemical—hence, the presence of all those natural extracts—making it suitable for use of people with sensitive skin.

Hongik Skin Foaming Cleanser - Lathered Swatch

Washing this away, I didn’t feel like my face tightened up like it usually would with other cleansers. It felt “squeaky clean,” but not overly dry and tight. I was impressed with how this cleaned some light makeup, too, without the help of a makeup remover or the need for double-cleansing, but for waterproof liners and the like, this won’t cut it. I use it as a morning cleanser (alternating days with honey), and at night before my night skin care routine.

I’m incredibly pleased with this product because I’m extremely lazy when it comes to washing off my makeup at night. I do it about 99% of the time, but I really, really have to dig deep. This is perfect for lazy days, for me!

Say hello to the bntgirls official badge! * PR Sample. Product was sampled and reviewed as part of the terms outlined for the BNT Girls.

Other BNT Girls: Joanne, Kine, Doris, Bella.

I have no information regarding Hongik Skin’s animal testing policy.

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Too Cool for School’s Bestselling Lip Products

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Mail time

I was so thrilled to receive these three bestselling lip products from Too Cool for School to try out. Among the sea of girly, frilly, and soft-looking Korean brands, Too Cool for School definitely stands out because of their strong branding, identity, and packaging. The good thing is: their products are great, too!

Too Cool for School

I received three of their bestselling lip products:

  • Glam Rock Smoky Nudy Lips* (Php 715) — a soft nude lip best used to counter the intensity of a smoky eye.
  • Kiss Time Ice Beam Glass* (Php 435) — a plumping lip gloss with a high-gloss, jelly system that provides moisture and vivid lipstick-like color.
  • Max in Pocket Lip Balm* (Php 605) — it’s a pocket-sized lip balm with a chain, which makes it so great for travel. I was super excited for this as Krysty raved about it a few months ago.

OK, let’s go by chronological order because I have no imagination.

The Glam Rock Smoky Nudy Lip Color* is a great nude lipstick, housed in an edgy (as far as makeup goes) black bullet with lots of graphic detail. Although it is a great lipstick, I’m not sure it’s the kind of nude that I like on myself, personally.

Using Glam Rock Smoky Nudy Lip Color:
Too Cool For School - Smoky Nude - Face

It’s not bad, just not a nude I would pick out for myself. :) I tend to go one or two shades darker than my skin tone, which I realize defeats the purpose of a “nude” lip, but I just don’t like that look on me. Read More

BNTGirls Review: Faith in Face Cherry Scoop Hand Butter*

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Faith in Face Hand Butter in Cherry Scoop

One of my desk essentials right now is a good ol’ hand cream, especially after colder weather has ravaged my hands. I usually go for clean and fresh scents, but the Faith in Face Hand Butter in Cherry Scoop* has a black cherry scent that has a sweetness I can get behind.

The FIF Hand Butter boasts of a whopping 20% shea butter in their mixture and is available in four scents: Cherry Scoop, Peach Crush, Sweet Spell, and Fresh Garden. The packaging is a flexible metal type of tube, typical of ointments, which I gravitate towards. The tube says, “Butterlicious: Melt smooth rich shea butter over your hands to give you an intensive nourishment and a touch of cherry and nuts.”

Faith in Face Hand Butter in Cherry Scoop - Tube, Swatch

Aside from shea butter, this contains chamomile flower water and herbal extracts from the Swiss Alps. It also contains cherry extract which, aside from the lovely scent, provides antioxidant effects, cell activation, and anti-aging properties, as well as brazil nut oil extract to effectively promote cell regeneration and provide moisturization.

Faith in Face Hand Butter in Cherry Scoop - Demo

The cream is thick, but is surprisingly quick to absorb into the skin, providing ample hydration. It’s not an instantaneous, grease-free deal but super quick for a cream so rich. Like I mentioned earlier, I keep this on my desk, so I can immediately moisturize my hands while working or if I suddenly want a whiff of cherries.

Say hello to the bntgirls official badge! * PR Sample. Product was sampled and reviewed as part of the terms outlined for the BNT Girls.

Other BNT Girls: Joanne, Kine, Doris, Bella.

I have no information regarding Faith in Face’s animal testing policy.

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