To Splurge or Not to Splurge?

There are a lot of beauty products out there that claim to be able to do a tremendous amount of improvement for your skin along with a jaw-dropping price tag. Do not get fooled! There are a lot of products out there that are advertised in such a way that can make you feel like you need it despite the price, but you actually don’t. Expensive doesn’t always mean it’s better. Sometimes, it’s the other way around. So the question is, to splurge or not to splurge?

Most of us already know that before we could find our holy grail products, whether it’s skincare or makeup, it takes so much time, effort and money just to finally find one that fits all your needs and criteria for a holy grail status. Now, we all hate having to spend and waste our hard-earned money for things that don’t really do what it claims to do. In this post, we will tackle some of the things that you need to think twice about before splurging a huge amount of money. Below is a list of 5 beauty products that are not worth splurging for.

1. Expensive Facial Cleansers

How long do you even use a facial cleanser on your skin? I’m pretty sure it’s less than a minute or two before you start rinsing it off. After that, it’s going down the drain along with the dirt and gunk you just washed away from your face. So why spend so much money on expensive facial cleansers? Facial cleansers are often used to balance your skin’s pH and/or remove dirt or makeup on your face. Although some cleansers offer additional benefits such as exfoliating and brightening– those are fine and very possible. But anything too extreme is slightly questionable in my opinion. Like how can a minute or two of slathering my face with a cleanser claim to do things such as shrink my pores? Remember, you rinse the product off! Even facial masks that offer great results requires about 15-20 minutes of being on your skin to get maximum benefits. Yes, you do need facial cleansers to wash your face because bar soaps are never a great option because it’s too acidic and it can lead to breakouts. But splurging on expensive facial cleansers are just really not worth your buck. As long as the cleanser does a good job in cleaning and it doesn’t break you out, I think that’s already a thumbs up for the brand.

2. Expensive Toners

Toners are usually meant to remove the makeup residue that your cleanser failed to remove, balance the pH levels of your skin if your cleanser is too acidic and to prep your skin for the next skin-care steps. Again, any other brand that you prefer will probably do. I think that it’s better to splurge on other beauty products such as serums or creams instead since those are the ones that have greater benefits because of the higher concentration of good ingredients that can really improve your skin condition.

3. Sunblock with very high SPF

Just because you went out under the sun with your face and body covered with an SPF 100 sunblock, it doesn’t mean your skin is safe from damage. Just a little side story from my own experience, I was on the beach with a couple of co-workers during a beach outing. I was sporting an SPF 30 sunblock while my friend was using an SPF 100. She felt secure that she wouldn’t get burned under the sun because she was using such a high SPF sunblock. Now, kindly refer to the break down below.

SPF 15 = Blocks 93% of UVB radiation

SPF 30 = Blocks 97% of UVB radiation

SPF 50 = Blocks 98% of UVB radiation

You see, there isn’t really a big difference in the performance of your sunblock even with such a low SPF one. So, why the high price tag along with the high SPF? Back to my story: At the end of the day, my co-worker still got sunburn and a very obvious tan. As for me, my skin looked pretty much the same before I even stepped out in the sun. I was still this fair light skinned me. Why? Because I reapplied my sunblock and she didn’t. She was so confident that the high SPF will protect her skin even after a long exposure under the sun. Bottom line, it’s not really about the high SPF that makes a sunblock do its job properly. Another thing to consider is that in the market, the higher the SPF of the sunblock is, the price tag also doubles up–some, even triple. Now ask yourself, is it really worth it to splurge on an expensive one?

4. Expensive Makeup Removers

Makeup removers are like facial cleansers. They just remove makeup and usually get rinsed off after even if it was the emollient balm type one. I haven’t really seen any makeup removers that claim to do anything other than leaving your skin feeling hydrated or supple after removing your makeup. This is a no-brainer. Don’t splurge.

5. Pore-Minimizing Products

One thing that’s proven and scientifically tested is that your pores don’t open and close. So if a product claims to shrink your pores, what’s the truth in that then? The pores that you currently have now will be the size of your pores until you get older. Environmental factors may seem to affect the size whenever you would check the mirror, but that’s mainly because your face has probably been producing more or less sebum, or even sweat, making it look enlarged. However, that doesn’t mean that your pores are opening and closing.

Although there are products that claim to make your pores less visible, that’s a different story. Products with silicone or pore-filling primers are different. A better alternative to purchasing pore-minimizing products is to get yourself something that can deep cleanse your pores to avoid clogging and making your pores look more enlarged because of whiteheads and blackheads.

6. Bonus: Cute Packaging

If you like K-beauty, then you’re probably splurging on products with extremely adorable packaging that seems to beckon you from afar. Most of us are guilty of that! A product or two that has bunny ears for your lip gloss cap is fine–but if it’s becoming such a habit–Stop yourself. I have never really found a product with adorable packaging that has delivered good results. That’s just me, though. I bet you guys don’t even use those products that you bought just because it’s shaped like a banana or a cat.

For those who have money to spend, go ahead and do whatever floats your boat. In the end, it’s your skin and your wallet. Let’s admit it, a little healthy splurging here and there is fine as long as it’s something that your skin actually needs. I’m just here to remind the whole lot of you that there are other skin care products that are worth splurging for and there are products that are not.

 

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Yay or Nay: CosRx Low pH Goodmorning Gel Cleanser

The Korean brand CosRx is becoming a staple for most Asian women lately in terms of skin care. Almost every beauty blogger/vlogger that I see recommends something from their brand and this gel cleanser was always on their list. CosRx has an extensive array of skin care products that can cater to almost any skin problem that you may have. From acne-prone skin to dry sensitive skin, they have the perfect products for you.

Basically, the CosRx Low pH Goodmorning cleanser has a pH level of 5.0~6.0 which is the optimum pH level needed on your skin. It is a soft subacid cleanser that balances your skin and provides a daily exfoliating effect through the natural ingredient BHA. It also has Citric Acid that helps in brightening your skin and deep cleansing. It can also be used by all skin types even for those who have sensitive skin because it is very gentle.

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It is in a 150ml tube. It’s actually very affordable for P349 (On sale when I bought it!) in Shopee because of the big size. A little goes a long way too so this can last for a very long time!

The Ingredients: Water, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate, Polysorbate 20, Styrax Japonicus Branch/Fruit/Leaf Extract, Butylene Glycol, Saccharomyces Ferment, Cryptomeria Japonica Leaf Extract, Nelumbo Nucifera Leaf Extract, Pinus Palustris Leaf Extract, Ulmus Davidiana Root Extract, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Flower Extract, Pueraria Lobata Root Extract, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Allantoin, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Betaine Salicylate, Citric Acid, Ethyl Hexanediol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Sodium Benzoate, Disodium EDTA

It smells strongly of tea tree. Which seems a little strong the first time I used it. But after a while of continued use, it started being bearable.

Before anything else, I just wanted to include the cleansers I was using alternately on my face before I switched to the CosRx Low pH Goodmorning gel. In the morning, I would use a collagen facial wash from my dermatologist for a gentle cleanse. If I wore makeup during the day, I would use my Cathy Doll Makeup Remover Toner & Serum Foam Cleanser to remove what’s left of my makeup after using the Garnier Micellar water. If I wasn’t wearing any makeup, I would use my Celeteque Acne Solutions gel cleanser at night.

Disclaimer: Don’t get me wrong, I love using the products stated above. They don’t break me out and I have been using those products for more than a year already. I just really wanted to try the CosRx!

Now, I wanted to include the previous list of cleansers I was using because I noticed that after a week of using the CosRx Goodmorning gel cleanser, I didn’t really notice any significant improvements on my skin. Yes, it was a very gentle cleanser that is great for use in the morning when you don’t really have much to clean on your face. But on days when you have makeup on, whether it was just a BB cream or something heavier like a foundation, I honestly suggest that you use another cleanser. I used to have whiteheads on my nose area, but blackheads were something I didn’t really struggle with. When I started using the CosRx cleanser, I started getting more and more of those blackheads on my nose area. Since I wasn’t struggling with blackheads before, I didn’t know anything about it or what causes it. So, I googled it and that’s where I found out why I was suddenly getting these black dots on my nose.

Below are usual causes of blackheads: (there are more…)

  • Age, hormonal changes that trigger a spike in sebum.
  • Androgen, the male sex hormone, triggers greater secretion of sebum and a higher turnover of skin cells around puberty. Both boys and girls experience higher levels of androgens during adolescence.
  • After puberty, hormonal changes related to menstruation, pregnancy, and the use of birth control pills can also bring on blackheads in women.
  • Overproduction of skin cells by the body can cause blackheads.
  • The blocking or covering pores by cosmetics and clothing.
  • Heavy sweating.
  • Environmental factors such as humidity, grease, etc.

After looking at the long list of causes (that I didn’t list down anymore), I figured mine was being caused by a possible clogging of pores due to the cosmetics residue. The CosRx Low pH Goodmorning gel cleanser is very gentle, to the point that it fails to remove 100% of any makeup residue that your micellar water/makeup remover failed to remove. Yes, it is non-drying and it leaves your face nice and soft in the morning when you use it. It is also good for sensitive skin, as it did not break me out and it didn’t inflame or irritate my skin in any way. But I find that it is only effective when you don’t have much to clean on your face. Probably just in moments where you just want to remove the excess oil on your face or rinse last night’s skin care products. Although it says ‘Goodmorning Gel Cleanser’, some people use it at night as well and they’re fine with it. But for my preference, I would like something that can thoroughly clean my face from any makeup residue in order to prevent the clogging of my pores. I don’t exactly think it deep cleanses.

Others also use cleansing tools in order to maximize the use of this gentle cleanser. They use Konjac Sponges or Cleansing Brushes along with it in order to improve the cleansing power. I have dry to combination skin and I find using tools such as those on a regular basis makes my skin drier since you’re adding an exfoliating device. I would prefer using the CosRx cleanser on its own, but the fact that it fails to remove any hard dirt and gunk on your face doesn’t really make it an amazing product for me. Although, it does help my dry skin somehow, as I wash my skin 2-3 times a day and this cleanser doesn’t leave my skin feeling tight and dry afterward. I love that aspect of it.

I switched up my cleansing routine again but continued incorporating the CosRx Low pH Goodmorning Gel cleanser for those times that I’m not wearing any makeup or in need of dire cleansing. I still rely on my Cathy Doll Makeup Remover Toner & Serum Foam Cleanser to fully remove any makeup residues and it works just fine. On days when I feel like my skin needs a little acne-care, I use my Celeteque Acne Solutions gel cleanser at night instead of the CosRx.

Would I repurchase?

Although I do love that it’s very gentle and non-drying, I dislike the fact that I have to purchase 2-3 cleansers aside from this one in order to do the all-around job for me. I’m trying to fix my overall skin care routine in order to lessen the cleansers I’m using, like probably adding acne-care on my toner or something, but still. For something that is well-raved about, I kind of wished it did more than just lightly cleanse. If I want to keep repurchasing this, I will end up switching up and looking for more products to use in my routine. Which is a bit tedious and costly, to be honest. Plus, I’m already using a line of CosRx products on my existing routine. I’m on a 50/50 on this. But I’ll keep on trying to make this work for now.

Rating?

Until I am able to justify the improvements it did for my skin, I’m going to give this a 3 out of 5… For now. But I just wanted to clear out that I do love the cleanser because it’s very gentle and helps with my dry skin, but I needed that extra oomph with my skin care and this doesn’t make that much of a difference.

Would I recommend?

I would definitely recommend this for those who don’t have a lot of issues that they want to correct on their skin. Someone who’s looking for a low pH cleanser that won’t irritate their skin. This is a good cleanser despite what I personally think about it and I would still recommend it to those who are not looking for something extra in their products. Plus, I find it very affordable for its size.

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A Love-Hate Relationship: Mizon Snail Recovery Gel Cream

I finally decided to purchase this Mizon Snail Recovery Gel (Cream) after a long contemplation of whether to buy it or not. Reviews over the internet are confusing. There are those who like it and those who hate it. Sure, there’s always something like that about makeup or skin care products since everyone’s skin will be different from each other. However, there was a higher percentage of dislikes among those who have tried this Mizon Snail Recovery Gel. Yet, here I am with this pink tube of snail gel on my vanity.

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Nothing too special about the packaging. It’s just a baby pink tube that I actually find very cute because of the color. I also love that it’s in a squeezy tube, not a tub.

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It contains 45ml (1.52 fl. oz.) per tube with 74% snail secretion filtrate.

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The packaging has an expiration date indicated.

First of all, what was the reason behind me purchasing this product despite the higher percentage of negative reviews? Everyone was saying that it was nowhere near ‘hydrating’ when it was labeled as a ‘moisturizer’. In my personal opinion, upon reading the English part on the packaging, it didn’t say anything about being hydrating. So, I wasn’t expecting it to be hydrating either. However, it was the percentage of the snail secretion filtrate that had me wanting to buy this, plus, it’s in a gel form that is claimed to be lightweight. Perhaps, there was more to this pink tube than being a failure to be an actual moisturizer.

I have dry combination skin that is sensitive. I have recently tested that I’m not allergic to snail filtrates, so I started venturing into that category with my skin care. As far as I know, snail secretion filtrates aid in the cell turnover of the skin. It quickens the process of cell turnover and heals your skin faster. This also helps in reducing the appearance of your blemishes.

I also have dry patches on my under eye area and some on my cheeks. I wanted to get rid of that, but despite the lack of moisturization this Mizon Snail Gel has, (According to the reviews of others) I believe that the quicker cell turnover will remedy my dry patches to an extent.

After that long introduction and sharing of feelings, here’s the actual review.

Is it moisturizing?

No, I also don’t find it moisturizing. However, it did improve the texture of my skin. The small bumps that I had on my cheeks and chin are now gone, only after using it every day, 2x a day, for a week. It did lack in the moisture department, but I think that was mainly because I had dry skin and this is a gel-type almost water-based product. I think products like these are meant to cater to those who have oily skin but wanted to add a moisturizer to their routine for balance. But for someone who has really dry skin, this is not something that you can use alone. Don’t treat this as a moisturizer. It does something far more than just to moisturize! I believe that this Mizon Snail Recovery Gel is good for healing your skin and not to moisturize alone.

What surprised me about this product is the first time I have used it. I woke up with a smoother and brighter looking complexion after using this the night before. It was then that I knew that this product really works wonders for your skin regardless of the lack of moisture and plumpness that it gives.

Although, for a product that claims to be multi-functional, it doesn’t seem to do much at all aside from healing your skin. But it’s a very affordable snail product, so if you’re just looking to try one that won’t hurt your budget, I guess this can be right for you. I purchased this via Shopee app, this is on sale for only P289 each.

Will I re-purchase?

I will continue to use this until I have used up the tube and I will give you guys updates. As of today, I happen to still have a love-hate relationship with this product. I do love the fact that it made my skin brighter and that it improved the texture, but since I have really dry skin, I would honestly prefer something that can moisturize, improve the texture of my skin and brighten it up all at the same time. I dislike the fact that I have to layer on a couple of different products just to achieve the results I want. Since I have very sensitive skin, doing so may lead to breakouts or irritate my face. So I try to keep my skin care on a minimal level.

I just wanted to shed a different light on this Mizon Recovery Snail Gel and remove it from the moisturizer category as I don’t think it’s the strength of this product. If you have oily skin, has a couple of blemishes that you want to fade, or you want to remedy uneven skin texture, this product may work for you but don’t expect it to deliver extreme results.

Rating?

I would rate this product a 3 out of 5. Simply because it was meant to suit other skin types and not mine. However, I would love to continue using this as it does a fine job in brightening and smoothing out the texture of my skin. It wasn’t that bad, to be honest, I would be loving this so much if there was an added variety that can cater to a drier skin type!

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Mumuso Oil Control Spray Review

As a beauty enthusiast, (or simply the “kuripot” girl in me) the moment I see an affordable option for my skincare or makeup, I feel the need to try it immediately.

The rise of K-Beauty or J-Beauty cheap finds in the market are booming in the Philippines now. Stores like Daiso, Miniso and Mumuso are expanding like crazy and can be found in most Ayala Malls & SM Stores now. Aside from cute stuff and other anik-anik, these stores have skincare and make-up options that are available for as low as P99. Some, even cheaper.

In this post, we will be reviewing this affordable Oil Control Spray by Mumuso.

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I purchased this in The Ayala Malls The 30th Mumuso Branch for only PHP149.

It contains 120ml of product in a spray can.

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Ingredients are written in Korean. If you are allergic to certain cosmetic ingredients or if you have sensitive skin, it is best to do a little research before trying this. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

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The claims of this product is very simple– to help in oil control. If you’re an oily skinned gal, this will help you keep the shine at bay.

Since this is supposed to keep you from oiling up during the day, you’re supposed to spritz this on your face before putting your makeup on. Let this dry for a few seconds or minutes, before proceeding to do your foundation.

I have dry combination skin. (Oily on the T-zone, dry on the cheek area.) On some days that parts of my face are not too dry, this Mumuso Oil Control Spray works amazing on its own even without a moisturizer. It may have oil-control properties, but it doesn’t dry your skin out. It has that cooling sensation once sprayed on your face. It feels as though your skin is being prepped from not feeling warm during the day. Not only does it help control the oil, it keeps your face feeling cool and fresh. It’s perfect for that warm Philippine weather.

Here’s a short breakdown of this oil control spray’s pros and cons.

PROS:

  • Affordable for P149.
  • Readily available in Ayala Malls & SM Store Mumuso branches, etc.
  • Sleek and nice packaging.
  • Provides oil-control for up to 5 hours depending on your skin type.
  • Provides a cooling sensation, helping you feel fresh underneath the makeup.
  • Light fresh lemon scent.
  • Did not break me out.
  • Can be used to set your makeup as well. But is best used underneath.
  • Hydrating even though it has oil-control properties.
  • Lightweight.

CONS:

  • The one I bought has a defective spray can. It’s very hard to press and does not dispense the product properly.
  • Does not prolong the wear of your makeup.

Overall, this Mumuso Oil Control Spray is an affordable yet good product. I will rate it a 4 out of 5 because it’s cheap and it delivers it’s claims quite well. There may be better oil-control sprays out there in the market, but for those who are just beginning to get into products like this, you will definitely appreciate this one. It’s very inexpensive and will probably last you about 5 months or more, depending on how you use it.

Will I re-purchase? Only if I don’t find any other oil control sprays that delivers better than this. But I would definitely recommend that you try this!

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