Review: A’BLOOM BHA Blackhead Blaster, Face Masks and Meringue Puffs

Hello readers! It’s been a while since I reviewed korean skin care. I’m still healing but I’m slowly using different products again. I received a package last month and it’s from A’BLOOM. It’s an exclusive brand from Althea. I was excited to try the blackhead balm out of all the product in the box. I’m using them for 2 weeks now and here are my experiences.

BHA Blackhead Blaster

Blackhead out without the ouch

HOW TO USE: After cleansing, apply onto targeted areas with excessive sebum. Gently massage in circular motions to release trapped oil and dirt. Rinse of with lukewarm waterThis blackhead balm has white willow bark extract (natural BHA), charcoal, apricot seed and tea tree oil. I’ve used this for a couple of times already on my nose area. It’s not as sensitive as other parts of my face. I was pretty confident to try this on that area since this product is free of artificial fragrance. First thing I noticed was the cooling effect while I’m swirling it around. I believe it’s the tea tree oil in it. I’m actually amazed how it removed the majority of my blackheads. The remaining spots are easier to push out compared to using  a remover tool alone. My nose looked clean and smooth after rinsing with lukewarm water. It exfoliates without being harsh. It doesn’t leave any redness even though I have hypersensitive skin. This can also be used on other parts of the face or body where you’re prone to blackheads or if you just feel the need to exfoliate. Best of all, it’s only 200 pesos.

Giant and Baby Meringue Puffs

High density latex-free foams

HOW TO USE: Use it dry for extra coverage or use it wet for dewy effect and a subtle finish. These puffs should be replaced every 1 to 3 months.

The Giant Meringue Puff is used for big areas while the Baby Puff is for hard to reach areas. They’re really soft and cute too. They made my makeup application smoother. There’s also less visible pores compared with finger application or a stippling brush. My foundation did not look cakey as it did not sit on top. It was set beautifully and clung to my skin that increased the longevity. The giant puff saved me some time to apply foundation for the whole face. I really like the baby puff for my eyelids, undereye and sides of my nose and mouth. It’s bothersome when the lashes have some foundation. I didn’t need mascara to clean my lashes when I used baby puff around my eyes. They are latex-free and did not trigger my contact dermatitis.


They all expand when it comes in contact with water. But when you let them dry after cleaning, they return back to normal size.


The only downside with these puffs for me is the cleaning part. I find it difficult to remove the stains. As you can see the set above, the other puff still has a stain of my foundation. I cleaned them with a cleansing foam which I also use for my brushes. My foundation is liquid-y and sets in quickly so that might also be a factor.

Giant Puff is 100 pesos while the Baby Puff Set is 140 pesos. They should be replaced 1 to 3 months depending on how often you use them. It’s nice that they included that info for hygiene purposes. 

Face Masks

Avocado is for nourishing, Lemon Lime for brightening, Watermelon for moisturizing and Peach for anti-blemish. Can I just say I love puns and the name Avo-Cuddle Me is so cute! These masks are made from eucalyptus tree. It’s eco friendly and safe to use on the skin. It’s important to know where the sheets are made from especially if you have sensitive skin. The mask is thin that you could still see your own skin underneath. My sister is loving this routine right now. She used Peach and she said there was no stinging sensation. The mask is filled with serum so it’s very moisturizing and calming. She didn’t have any irritation. It’s 20 pesos each and you can get a set of 10 for 180 pesos. 

 Overall, my sis and I are satisfied with everything we’ve tested. BHA Blackhead Blaster is now a part of my simple routine. I’ll be adding it in my next Althea order. Their face masks are hoarded by customers. A’BLOOM has a good start with this impressive collection. I’m looking forward to their releases in the future. These are available on Althea’s website and mobile app.

 

 

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Review: CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser

My current routine consists of cleansing oil and facial wash only as I’m going through Topical Steroid Withdrawal (TSW). I must say my skin is getting better when I started using less products. I reviewed CeraVe’s Cleanser Bar before and it worked for my skin’s sensitivity. I wanted to give this brand another shot so I browsed their website. I checked all the ingredients list of their products I’m interested in. After checking, I’m thinking that the Foaming Facial Cleanser would be the best fit for me.

Description:
A foaming facial cleanser is ideal for removing excess oil, dirt and makeup but it’s important to choose a formula that won’t disrupt the skin’s natural protective barrier. It’s also beneficial to choose a gentle cleanser with ingredients that help maintain moisture balance. CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser features ceramides hyaluronic acid and niacinamide to help reinforce the skin’s barrier, attract hydration and soothe the skin.

Ingredients:
Purified Water, Cocamidopropyl Hydrosultaine, Glycerin, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate, PEG 150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate, Niacinamide, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Propylene Glycol, Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6-II, Ceramide 1, Hyaluronic Acid, Cholesterol, Phytosphingosine, Citric Acid, Edetate Disodium, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum

Pros:
– Affordable
– Little goes a long way
– Gives enough lather
– Easy to rinse
– Leaves no film/oily residue
– Doesn’t dry out my skin
– Helps to push out black/whiteheads
– Left me feeling clean after use
– Doesn’t cause breakouts
– Doesn’t trigger my contact dermatitis

Cons:
– Not yet available in-stores locally.

The texture is a bit liquidy so you’ll only need a small amount. It gives enough lather for me. Enough to remove oil and make me feel clean. This is for normal to oily skin. This works well although I have combination skin. T-zone is oily and cheeks are dry and flakey. It’s not too drying for my cheeks. I’m using this cleanser for two months already. I also noticed that this cleanser helps to push out black/whiteheads easier with a blackhead remover tool. I use less pressure which minimizes the risk of getting hyperpigmentation. Best of all, it doesn’t irritate me even though my skin condition is hypersensitive. It doesn’t interfere with the healing of my TSW.

The only down side is it’s not yet available locally. I ordered mine online. Thank you online shopping! 😉 They have an official Amazon store. I’ll try to order on Amazon and hopefully I can share my shopping experience with you all.

What about you? What’s your favorite face wash right now?

Review: MUJI Cleansing Oil for Sensitive Skin

Since I’m going through Topical Steroid Withdrawal, I can only try few products. I don’t want to use cleansing tissues anymore because they can scratch the skin. I switched to oil-based remover last year and I’m glad I did. I was using Human Nature’s sunflower oil but I find that it can build up and eventually clog the sink. I poured hot water in the sink to dissolve it. Not a major issue, it’s just that I’m lazy. Haha! So I decided to look for another product. I went to MUJI Greenbelt and found their cleansing oil. I read a lot of positive reviews online so I came back and got myself the travel-sized bottle.


Description from MUJI Singapore website:
The oil component of this cleansing oil is 100% plant based (mainly olive oil), making it gentle on the skin. ・Fragrance free・Artificial color free,・Mineral oil free・Paraben-free・Alcohol free・Allergy tested (This does not mean that the product does not cause allergy to anyone)
How to use:
Take an appropriate amount on your palm, and massage into the makeup and dirt. Then, rinse thoroughly with cold or lukewarm water.
Ingredients:


Pros:
– Affordable
– Locally available, 50ml for 265 pesos
– Free from potential irritants like fragrance, alcohols, colorants and mineral oil
– Easily rinsed off
– No oily or sticky residue
– Easily removes my full coverage makeup
– Did not trigger my contact dermatitis
Cons:
– Clogged my pores which resulted to breakouts

I use a few drops on my palms and then apply in circular motions. It becomes milky once I start rinsing with water. Now for its performance, I’m very impressed with how easily it removes my makeup. In just few circular motions, bam! I’m bare-faced already. It also feels hydrating without leaving a film or oily residue.

This would’ve been the best makeup remover for me if it didn’t clog my pores. I already found a way to prevent the breakouts though. I use a blackhead remover tool on the clogged pores. Removing black/whiteheads prevents me from having breakouts.

Now that I know that olive oil is pore-clogging for me, I’m going to be cautious about it when I look at product labels. If I use water-based remover, the makeup will just get stuck on spaces of my flaky skin. Still, I find that this cleansing oil works well for my combination skin in terms of removing makeup without triggering my contact dermatitis.

A lot of their products intrigue me. Have you tried anything from this brand?😉

Review: Althea Milk Peel Cream Mask

Hello readers! You’ve probably heard about this product already. I’ve been trying it for a while and I’m ready to share my thoughts. Althea has been releasing unique products lately. I’m glad to try them out for you guys! This was sent to me but as always, everything is based on my sensitive skin’s experience.

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Description from their website:
Give your skin a big gulp of hydration with the refreshing peeling powers of Althea’s Milk Peel Cream Mask! Containing both AHA and BHA extracts, this gentle but effective exfoliator transforms from a clay to a whipped cream lather, whisking away dead skin cells to prevent flakiness. It’s also formulated with casein protein from milk to revitalize and moisturize the skin. The result is radiantly smooth, healthy skin that’s bouncy to the touch!

How to use:
Dampen the skin and apply an even layer onto the skin, massaging till a rich lather forms. Leave on for 30-60 seconds before rinsing away with warm water.

Ingredients:
Water (Aqua), Kaolin, Glycerin, Disiloxane, Bentonite, Propanediol, Myristic Acid, Methyl Perfluoroisobutyl Ether, Stearicacid, Methyl Perfluorobutyl Ether, Potassium Hydroxide, 1,2-Hexanediol, Palmitic Acid , Ethylhexylglycerin, Milk Proteinextract, Disodium Edta, Gaultheria Procumbens (Wintergreen) Leaf Extract, Gluconolactone, Glycolic Acid, Titaniumdioxide (Ci 77891), Fragrance (Parfum), Coumarin*, Hexyl Cinnamal*, Citronellol*

Pros:
– Fairly priced at ₱ 490 on Althea’s website/app
– Innovative
– Multifunctional, mask pack and cleanser
– Lightweight
– Gives hydration
– Brightens skin after rinsing
– Skin is soft to touch
– Smoothening

Cons:
– Fragrance is strong for me

This mask to cleanser product is innovative. Perfect for those who want to save time or for those who still want to step up their skin care game. Not everyone has the time to use tons of products, right? It has this thick creamy texture. Surprisingly, it feels light and doesn’t feel hot either. Skin is brighter after using. It’s probably the milk protein in it. Milk usually do that based on previous products I’ve tried. My skin felt soft, smooth and hydrated as well. I’d still recommend to follow up with moisturizer after if you have dry skin.

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As you can see in the photos above, it just looks like cream from the start. Then it slightly lathers up after a few seconds. How cool is that? Since its fragrance is strong for me, I only use this on oily areas that are not sensitive. I lack exfoliation on those areas.

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Overall, this is good addition in a routine. It mildly exfoliates with AHA and BHA, doubles as mask and cleanser. It’s like a treat to yourself after a long day to bring back that fresh look. Milk is beneficial not just for the body. It’s also great as an ingredient for skin care. It’s nourishing, can strengthen and make skin feel baby soft.

Review: Althea Pore Purifying Serum Cleanser

I love the feeling of removing makeup after a long day. It’s like the skin could breathe again. When it comes to cleansing, the texture and feeling are very important to me. Last month, Althea sent their latest product.  Serum cleanser? That’s new to me. They’re really stepping up the skin care game. I was intrigued how simple it looks and if it will work wonders.

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Description:
A purifying cleanser with a serum-like formula. Removes makeup, dirt and oil without drying out the skin. Balances the pH levels of the skin to ensure it stays healthy

How to use:
Dampen the skin and apply on a small amount. Gently massage onto the skin in circular motions for 5-10 seconds before rinsing off with water.

Ingredients:
Water, Peg-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Cyclomethicone, Isononyl Isononanoate, Dipropylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Extract, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Mentha Arvensis Leaf Extract, Glycerin, Citric Acid, Hydroxyacetophenone, Disodium Edta, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Citrate, Butylene Glycol, Fragrance

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Pros:
– Fairly priced, ₱ 430 for 150ml on their website
– Simple packaging
– Little goes a long way
– Non-drying
– Lightweight
– Effectively removes my makeup
– Doesn’t leave film or oily feeling

Cons:
– Has fragrance

I tested it on different methods. I swiped the cotton twice to remove makeup. I find that using it alone is better. It’s economical because there’s really no need for cotton. You’ll only need a few drops on your palms then gently go on the skin in circular motions. The makeup melted so easily! It felt hydrated, smooth and soft to touch after rinsing.

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It’s also easy to rinse with water. There’s no film, sticky nor oily residue at all. It felt like my skin’s already clean. I still used a second cleanser ’cause I prefer it that way. Others skip the second cleanse and they just proceed to toning right after.  The name itself describes the texture. It’s runny and light like a serum. It’s watery that I thought it won’t remove my full coverage makeup but it did! Doing circular motions helped to break down my makeup in a few seconds. Skin felt really fresh afterwards.

The only downside is it has fragrance like most korean cosmetics. It’s only a subtle scent though. I sure hope they’ll remove it or make another one that’s fragrance-free because I really like how it worked on my skin. This could’ve been a staple in my routine. This performed better than my sunflower oil. I’m going to give this a go again after my TSW. Overall, this is a great makeup remover. It removes makeup fast and no need to wash it off with cleanser or soap. All you’ll need is water. Great after a night out or for when you’re really tired or lazy but still want to take care of your skin. 😉

Best Products I’ve Used in 2018

Hello readers. I’m here to do a recap of my favorites last year. I selected these because I reach for them the most out of all the products. They’re divided into categories; skin care, lip care and fragrance.

Skin Care

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Rashfree Zinc Oxide Ointment
My most favorite in this list. I’m using this for my topical steroid withdrawal. It instantly gives itch relief and protects the skin from external harm. A 30 gram tube of this is only 170 pesos. Available locally at the drugstores.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar
My first review on this didn’t turn out well when my skin was still oily. But now I have dry skin and works well. It doesn’t cause breakouts anymore and no irritation. It has 3 kinds of ceramides that can aid in strengthening skin’s barrier. The only downside is it’s not in-stores yet. It has to be ordered online.

Human Nature Sunflower Oil
I used this as moisturizer when I posted my full review. But I found a better use for it as makeup remover. Since my skin is flakey, I can’t use cleansing tissues anymore. This oil dissolves my makeup in a few circular motions. It works better for oil-based makeup than water-based. It can’t be washed of with water alone so I follow up with CeraVe soap. I splash my face with water and then add a little bit of water to the lather. Sunflower oil has comedogenic rating of 2 but it doesn’t break me out.

Watsons Unscented Wet Wipes
This was my makeup remover before my TSW. The sheets are wet enough to breakdown my makeup. I’m a full coverage girl so I use liquid foundation, concealer and powder foundation. 2 sheets are enough to completely remove them. We choose fragrance-free products as much as possible. A pack of 50 sheets is 75 pesos. Make sure to reseal it properly to avoid it from getting dry.

Althea Petal Velvet Sunaway Cream
I really liked this sunblock because it’s long lasting. It stays on the skin even if I sweat a lot. There’s only a minimal flashback for photography. There’s a ball mixer inside which makes shaking the product a lot faster. The oil doesn’t separate unlike with other sunblocks. It’s good for sweaty skin. It mattifies and makes skin look fresh. This has a strong fragrance though.

Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence
Now this sunblock is for everyday use. It feels light on the skin and gives hydration. Great for warm weather because of it’s lotion-y texture. It’s fragrance-free. It doesn’t stay on for long but that’s okay if you’re just in an air-conditioned place.

Lip Care

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Human Nature Tinted Lip Balm
I wasn’t a fan of lib balms before. But this one form Human Nature got me hooked. It gives a subtle tint. Pink Orchid is close to my natural lip color. It has a little bit of shimmer but it’s not bothersome. The peppermint in it gives a cooling effect on the lips. It’s locally made plus it’s very affordable.

Fragrance

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Stay Fresh Body Sparkling Mist by Titi Kamal x Althea
This came in the mail just in time for the holidays. It has a light floral scent. I used this a lot during our gatherings. It smells sophisticated. I can see myself choosing this scent for formal events too. The packaging is sturdy and sprays evenly. This is a great gift for your best friend.

I carefully selected these as they all work well on me. I’m quite picky now when it comes to shopping for cosmetics. I’m still excited to explore stores and find new products to try. By the way, what’s the one thing that you could rave about? Share it below. 😉

Review: Rashfree Zinc Oxide Ointment

I’ll be reviewing an ointment that I’m currently using and is one of my faves this year. But first, I want to share what I’ve been searching online. It’s about Topical Steroid Withdrawal or TSW. People who suffer from skin conditions like eczema and dermatitis can relate to this. Your skin became so dependent on steroid creams that it flares up when you’re not using it. What is TSW? It’s when you finally decide to stop using steroid cream for good. You can either go cold turkey (completely stop) or gradually reduce it so you wouldn’t be overwhelmed. The discomfort will probably be the same but it helped me to prepare mentally and emotionally. Those few months or years of flare ups and flaking without using steroid will be worth it in the end. I’m going to discuss more about it in another post.

I tried going cold turkey but it was so uncomfortable. So I’m gradually stopping it instead but by areas.. Right now, I stopped using steroid on my T-zone area; forehead, nose and chin. I’m going to deal with the cheeks next year… which is the biggest part of my rashes. I’ve watched Youtube videos on how to reduce discomfort. Some of them used Sudocrem. It’s an antiseptic cream used for itch relief. Zinc oxide is one of the main ingredients. I couldn’t wait to order online so I found an alternative that I can get on that day.

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I found a review on Rashfree Zinc Oxide Ointment and the result was amazing. It’s locally made and can be bought at drugstores. I bought mine for around 170 pesos at Mercury Drugstore. It’s mainly used for diaper rash and minor skin conditions. According to Unilab’s website, zinc oxide is a skin protectant. See the leaflet in the box for instructions and when to stop.

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Pros:
– Affordable, around 170 pesos
– Available locally at drugstores
– 30g is a huge amount for an ointment
– Little goes a long way
– Did not trigger contact dermatitis
– Did not cause breakouts
– Can be used as spot treatment
– Helps to protect skin
– Helps to reduce oozing of rashes

Cons:
– Difficult to wash off
– Can be drying

I was a bit hesitant at first because the ointment is thick. I thought it would clog my pores and cause breakouts but it doesn’t! You’ll only need a small amount since it has thick texture. It did not make my rashes worse. It actually calmed my skin down and helps to stop the oozing of rashes. This can also be used on small areas or spot treatment as you can see in the photo below.

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In my case, it doesn’t remove rashes completely but it protects skin from getting infections. I’m going through TSW so I know the rashes will be on and off for a while. I’m glad there’s a local alternative that’s so affordable. 30 grams of this product can last for a long time. I also love that it’s in an collapsible aluminum tube. I can control how much I just need.

The only downsides that I can think of is it’s difficult to wash off and it can be drying. Sometimes it stays on spaces of dry patches. But even if it happens, there’s no pimple breakouts. It can be drying but that helps to “close” my rashes. Overall, this is my most favorite product this year. It really helps me while I’m going through TSW. It makes this journey not as bad as what I’ve expected.