May 26, 2015

Tattoo lip tints! Slightly impractical but good overall: The Saem Saemmul Wrapping Tint Review

This here is a tattoo lip tint! You apply it on, wait a few minutes for it to dry, and then peel it off. It’s a fun little gimmick, but it has its disadvantages. It’s a little frustrating to use at first and you burn through a lot of product. That aside, the tint itself is nice. It’s vivid and has good lasting power.

Brand: The Saem
Name: Saemmul Wrapping Tint
Color: OR01 Sweet Orange
Amount: 15g
Actual Weight: 21g
Price in Korea: 5,000₩

It comes as a little tube wrapped in plastic, although I’ve taken the plastic off here:



applicator tip:

I recommend storing it with the cap facing up. The product is runny and tends to spill out the first few times (then becoming unsalvageable, since it hardens almost immediately.)

1. When you first squeeze it out, it’s a thick, gooey liquid.
2. It starts drying almost immediately. It gets sticky, and during this time your lips are basically glued together.
3. After 8-10 minutes, it dries completely and the edges start peeling off.
4. You then peel it off, and you’re left with nothing but color.

Here’s a hand demonstration:

Here’s how it looks on my lips. In the second photo you can see the edges peeling off and get an idea of how sticky it is:

(We'll talk about why it's so messy in a bit!)

Lastly, here is the "skin" that you peel off:

My lips are a pale, ashy pink. If I apply a thick layer, my lips become a vivid, warm-toned, almost reddish orange. If I apply a thin layer, the orange is less obvious—it’s there, but natural enough to just pass as healthy lips.

Here I am with a thick layer:

As you can see, there’s also a bit of a gradient when I apply it. It’s darkest in the center where my lip calluses are and lightest towards the edges. I’m not sure why it does that (since I apply it evenly), but it always happens to me with this product. \_(ツ)_/

Here are some more pictures of me wearing it:

It lasts well through water and food:

In my experience, drinking water does not fade the tint—at least, not appreciably. It does fade a little with food, but it also depends on how heavy the meal is and how much I am wiping my lips. Generally, the orange color is still there, but it’s not obvious.

Here’s where it can get a bit impractical, and even a bit frustrating: It’s messy.

It’s messy because of the applicator tip. This type of tip tends to be imprecise in general, but with this product, you’re also adding the fact that it starts drying immediately.

In other words, as soon as the product leaves the tube, it starts drying up. It becomes sticky and tacky. So if you dare try to go back and spread it out or apply more, the product that was already applied will tug and stick to the applicator. And now that it’s stuck on the applicator instead of your lips, you really have to go back and apply more. Problem is, that buildup on the applicator will cause even more stickiness and interference with your application.

messy applicator buildup—all that goop is super sticky, by the way!

Basically, the more you try to apply, the more builds up on the applicator. The more that builds up on the applicator, the messier it becomes. And to overcome this, you find yourself squeezing out a ton of product in order to glide over the previous, sticky layers. Can you see why it’s annoying?

Now, don’t fret entirely! There are 3 ways to overcome this:
1. Use a lip brush. Clean and easy.
2. Apply everything in one swoop. Apply in thick layers and don’t go back to smoothen anything out.
3. Don’t worry, because it actually doesn’t matter too much. I find that when I peel it off, the colors on the edge are faint and blurry anyways. This goes back to the gradient thing I mentioned above!

Long story short: It’s not impossible, but it can be frustrating at first. Although I will say that I still find myself using a lot of product each time, even with practice. (Whereas in comparison, traditional lip tints just require a few dabs here and there.)

I like it! Though I will be honest, I didn’t like it at first. It was messy and annoying to have my lips glued together for so long. But I’ve since gotten used to it, and I can now enjoy it for its vivid color and lasting power.

Nevertheless, due to practicality reasons (the fact that you can’t apply this in a jiffy or touch up on the go, plus the fact that you burn through so much product), I do not consider this a long-term option for a good lip tint.

Do I like it? Yes.
Would I buy it again? No.
Would I recommend it? Sure, it doesn’t hurt to try! It is a nice lip tint and a fun experience (sort of); it’s just not practical in the long run. That's my opinion, at least!

Thanks for reading!

May 23, 2015

Get to know me #2: 11 Eating Habits of Mine

To finish up my last Get to Know Me post, the Liebster Award from Ashley BCM, here are 11 facts about myself! I have decided to center each group of facts around a specific theme, with today's theme being eating habits!

1. I like soft, mushy foods and hate hard, chewy foods.
This is a recurring theme which you shall see again in the next few facts!

2. I love McDonald’s mushy fries.
I call them oicha oichas. (It goes back to a commercial I saw as a kid.) So whenever I eat McDonald’s, I only eat the oichas and leave out the crunchie wunchies.

3. I hate folded potato chips.
They’re so obnoxiously lumpy and asymmetrical, argh! I like flat ones because they fit nicely on my tongue. :3 Just like fries, I always pick out the folded ones and give them to my boyfriend.

4. I only eat the leaves of kimchi.
I refuse to eat the stems. As you can guess, the stems are hard while the leaves are soft. ◕‿◕

5. Speaking of kimchi, I also don’t like “good quality” kimchi.
Good quality kimchi is supposed to be spicy and sour. I don’t like spicy kimchi. I like kimchi that is sour, but not spicy—like the kind you get at Costco!

6. Whenever I eat cookies or crackers, I break them into tiny pieces first.
Not sure why I do this; it just tastes better to me!

7. I do the same thing with bread.
Shred first, eat second! This usually creates a pile of shreds on my plate which I then nibble on.

8. I am a messy eater.
I don’t have a big mouth, so things like sauce always end up all over my cheeks. And there goes my foundation, sigh...ㅜㅜ

9. I don’t like ice cream.
I stopped liking it about 5 years ago for some mysterious reason. Now, I only like specific kinds of ice cream, like red bean popsicles.

10. I gnaw on my straws until they are flat and mangled.
It’s just so…comforting! My favorite is when you can feel the straw smushing as you bite down with your molars. It's so amazing~! (/∇\*)

11. I sip my straws from the sides of my mouth.
I like to position my straws on sides of my mouth, about where my molars are. That way I can gnaw on it while I drink. You can see a picture of me doing it here. (Edit:And here too!)


And for my own sanity, let it be known that I am not saying these to imply, “Look how quirky and silly I am! I’m such a weirdo, lol~" No.

(ノಠ ∩ಠ)ノ彡( o°o)

In actuality, I don’t think I’m a very ladylike eater. And for that, I’m never really 100% comfortable eating outside or with friends because I’m trying extra hard to be clean, sigh~ But at least I don’t chew with my mouth open or smack my lips, so I got that going for me!

Thanks for reading! Anyone else with similar food habits?

(And for all you haters out there, that's lens flare, not dandruff–else I would have edited it.
But go ahead and pretend that it is; I'm sure it'll make you feel better about yourself.)

May 21, 2015

My Korean skincare routine for dry, acne-prone skin

I don’t usually share my skincare routine, and that’s because it depends heavily on what product I happen to be reviewing at the time. But lately, my skin has been doing so well that I just had to write it down!

As of late, I can safely say that I have been acne free for one whole month. Now, I normally have at least one pimple (or cyst) on my face at any given point in time. Whenever I recover from one pimple, I wake up the next morning with a new one somewhere else (argh!) So for me to wake up without any new inflammations for 30 days straight…that was quite an accomplishment!

Without further ado, here is my current skincare routine:

From left to right:
  • Dr. Oracle the Snow Queen Enzyme Powder Wash (review here)
  • Stridex pads
  • Whamisa Organic Flowers Toner Deep Rich
  • Shara Shara Honey Bomb All-in-one Ampoule (review here)
  • Guerisson 9-Complex Essence
  • Guerisson 9-Complex Cream (review here)
  • Shiseido White Lucent Anti-dark Circles Eye Cream

1.) Dr. Oracle the Snow Queen Enzyme Powder Wash: for gentle, non-drying cleansing (review here)

I love this cleanser. It’s extremely gentle (yet effective) on my dry skin. It’s so gentle that it doesn’t exacerbate my dryness at all—something I realized other cleansers, even the ones marked as gentle, do.

To give you an example, there was a 3 week period where I had switched from this cleanser (the Dr. Oracle one) to a popular Shiseido one. My skin immediately took two steps backwards. It went back to being dry, flaky, and rough. My makeup, of course, looked terrible.

I then switched back to this cleanser and everything toned down within a few days. My skin was softer, less dry, and less flaky. It made me think that perhaps my skin wasn’t as dry as I thought; perhaps it was just that most cleansers exacerbate it.

Bascially, I love this cleanser because it’s so gentle!

2.) Stridex pads: for deep cleansing of my pores and keeping my blackheads in check

These are 2% salicylic acid pads from Walmart. They’re cheap but do the trick! If I don’t use these for a couple weeks, I see a definite difference in my skin. Not only does my skin feel rougher and flakier, but my pores, comedones, and blackheads get larger. Using these pads has helped refine my skin texture and keep my blackheads in check. I can’t be without them!

3.) Whamisa Organic Flowers Toner Deep Rich: eh, mild softening

This is a toner I recently bought off Glow Recipe. To be honest, I don’t love it. It doesn’t seem to do much except make my skin somewhat softer, though still not as much as the horse oil serum did (which I will talk about in a second!) But for the sake of completion, this is the toner I am currently using. Don’t love it though!

4.) Shara Shara Honey Bomb All-in-one Ampoule: for all around great moisture (review here)

(If you look at the picture above, you'll notice that I've transferred this moisturizer into a smaller bottle from Paula's Choice! The original packaging was a wide-mouthed jar which I didn't like.)

Other than that, I really like this moisturizer! It has a thin and lightweight texture and strong hydrating power. When I first began using it, it also made my skin softer. It hasn’t made my skin much softer since then, but that’s okay—for softness, let’s go to the next product!

5.) Guerisson 9-Complex Essence: for major skin softening!

This is a horse oil essence/serum. It doesn’t do anything in terms of moisture, but it does soften my skin. A lot. Within the first few days, my skin felt like velvet–yes, velvet! Granted, it was temporary at first. If I forgot to use it one day, my skin would no longer feel like velvet. However, with continued use (about a month), my skin now feels baby soft even if I don’t apply skincare for a couple days.

6.) Guerisson 9-Complex Cream: for helping my dry skin in general (review here)

This is the infamous horse oil cream that I love and will be ordering a second jar of very soon! When I first began using it, it helped improve my dryness by providing a thin coating of sebum-like moisture on my skin. It also lessened my dry flakes. Since then, the results have been steady. My skin generates a bit of sebum on its own and I no longer feel dry throughout the day.

7.) Shiseido White Lucent Anti-dark circles Eye Cream: for eye cream and lightening dark circles + acne scars

This is Shiseido’s anti-dark circle eye cream; I’ve simply transferred it into a bottle and stored it upside down. And because the bottle I am using is clear, I also store it in a dark drawer to avoid the sunlight.

I like this eye cream because it’s rich enough to moisturize my undereye area (which is uber dry and wrinkly!) But most importantly, it lightens my dark circles and acne scars. Applying a smidge on my acne scars brings from a medium brown to a light brown. It sadly doesn’t remove them completely, seeing as the results plateau after 2 weeks, but still—I’ll take it!


Putting all of these together, I can safely say that my skin is doing much better than it was a few months ago. Here is a picture (with foundation on.) I now have:
  • no pimples or cysts for the past month
  • more refined pores
  • smaller comedones/blackheads on my nose
  • no blackheads/comedones on my cheeks
  • smoother and softer skin overall
  • less dry flakes. I usually only have them on my nose now.
  • less dryness overall. My skin doesn’t feel lacking in moisture anymore; I’m about just right.

Now, that’s not to say that my skin is perfect! I still have redness, acne scars, and flakes on my nose. The point is that they are much, much less than before.

And in case it matters, I have also switched to eating Asian (mostly Korean) food again. Fried rice, noodles, kimchi-based dishes, marinated pork, things like that.

Again, I’m not dermatologist, but that’s what I’ve been doing lately!

May 12, 2015

A lightweight Korean sunscreen: A’pieu Pure Block Aqua Sun Gel SPF 50+/PA+++ (Dry Skin Review)

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A lightweight Korean sunscreen: A’pieu Pure Block Aqua Sun Gel SPF 50+/PA+++ (Dry Skin Review)

For this sunscreen, think lightweight. It’s thin, lightweight, and easy to spread. It doesn’t leave a white cast. It basically feels like nothing—although keep in mind I do have dry skin! And as far as I know, this sunscreen is not waterproof (or at least, they haven't indicated that it is.)

Of the 12 Korean sunscreens I’ve bought, there are a couple others that have similar texture to this one. One thing nice about A’pieu, however, is that it tends to be cheaper than its competitors. This sunscreen retails for 7,800₩ in Korea, whereas most others go from 12-15,000₩.


Brand: A’pieu
Name: Pure Block Aqua Sun Gel SPF 50+/PA+++
Amount: 50mL
Actual Weight: 62g
Expiry: 12 months
Price in Korea: 7,800₩

It’s a skinny little tube:




manufacturing date:


It doesn’t leave a white cast on my skin. It has a slight alcohol (disinfectant) scent.

Texturally, it reminds me of thin, water-based creams (as in, skincare creams.) It’s thin, watery, and lightweight. It’s easy to spread, but not to the point of dripping or running like sun “milks” do.

Here’s how it looks on my hand:

Loosely spread out:

Semi-blended & fully blended:

How the texture feels on my face: When I first begin spreading it, it it glides on effortlessly. As it starts to absorb, though, it develops a slight creamy, oil-based feel. And after blending, it does leave behind a thin veneer of oil. This causes my face to be a little sticky and shiny, but nowhere near as much as with other sunscreens. It’s more akin to the stickiness and shine you get from skincare. It doesn't last long, and I wouldn't call it greasy.

You can see the shine difference here on my cheekbone. Notice how it’s not that oily:

before sunscreen, after sunscreen:

(Does it affect makeup?)

Because it’s such a thin, skincare-like texture, it doesn’t really affect my foundation. The only difference is that my foundation looks a teeny bit dewier, as evidenced by the light on my cheekbones:

foundation with sunscreen, without sunscreen

But apart from that, it has no effects on my bumps or flakes (hence why I have flakes on both sides in that photo!)

This sunscreen also does not affect on my foundation’s lasting power; it’s the same with or without. In other words, this sunscreen does not cause my makeup to melt off, which is good!

Here is my lasting power without sunscreen:

(Used a darker color for easier comparison! Ignore the finger marks -_-)

And here is the lasting power with sunscreen:

Not much difference between these two. They both faded about the same.

It hasn’t caused me to break out, although I don’t have particularly sensitive skin.

Most of the time, I am able to apply this around my eye area (and even directly on my eyelids) without any stinging whatsoever. The only time I experience (minor) stinging is when I am clumsy and either apply too much on my eyelids or get some in my eye. Other than that, it's gentle.

I like it a lot! Love the SPF, love the texture...I honestly have no complaints! Granted, it doesn't help my dryness, but I’m thankful it doesn’t hurt it, either.

Would I recommend this? Yes!