Review: Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Line

Innisfree is one of the popular Korean ‘roadshop’ brand and you can find Innisfree stores all over Korea and internationally. When my sister went to Korea, she found multiple Innisfree stores just in the main Myeong-dong shopping area. Naturally, she came back with lots of Innisfree products and I’m a happy recipient of her haul. My sister who is acne-prone, bought the entire line and I got the travel sizes of the Green Tea Balancing Skin and Green Tea Balancing Cream, a decant of the Green Tea Balancing Lotion for sampling. The full-size green tea serum is also one of her extras.

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Today, I’m reviewing the Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Line. I took a long time before posting this review as I wanted to thoroughly test these products beforehand. I used this exclusively for my AM skincare routine for 1 month and here are my thoughts.

According to Innisfree website, the Green Tea Balancing Line is meant for people with combination type skin. My skin type wavers between oily to combination, depending on the weather, and I’ve discovered that my oiliness is mainly due to dehydration.

Green Tea Balancing Skin

Green Tea Extract (86.9%), Propanediol, Glycereth-26, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Butylene Glycol, Betaine, Prickly Pear Extract, Orchid Extract, Camellia Leaf Extract, Grapefruit Extract, Orange Extract, Tangerine Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glycerin, Behenyl Alcohol, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Carbomer, Tromethamine, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance

This is a viscous watery toner, almost serum-like in texture. It is refreshing and has a nice citrusy scent that characterises the entire Innisfree Green Tea series. In terms of effects, I’ve noticed that it does add hydration and absorbs fast; a good basic hydrating toner.

Green Tea Serum

Green Tea Extract (75.9%), Propanediol, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Ethanol, Glycerin, Betaine, The green Tea Seed Oil (208mg), Prickly Pear Extract, Orchid Extract, Tangerine Peel Extract, Camellia Leaf Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Extract, Grapefruit Extract, Orange Extract, Tangerine Extract, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Cetearyl Olivate, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Sorbitan Olivate, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Ethylhexylglycerin, Cocoa Extract, Dextrin, Potassium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance

I really wanted to love this serum. It is much raved about online and it is one of Innisfree’s most popular products. However, after 2 weeks of applying this, I noticed that the first indicators of dehydration on my skin are showing red flags: the fine lines on my forehead are creasing more whenever I raise my brows or frown. I re-examined my skincare routine and finally narrowed it down to this serum. I suspect that the alcohol content is not playing well with the rest of my AM routine and the other products are not hydrating enough for me to use this serum at the same time.

Green Tea Balancing Lotion

Green Tea Extract (87.0%), Propanediol, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Tangerine Peel Extract, Prickly Pear Extract, Orchid Extract, Camellia Leaf Extract, Althaea Officinalis Root Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Extract, Grapefruit Extract, Orange Extract, Tangerine Extract, Glycerin, Hydrogenated Poly(C6-14 Olefin), 1,2-Hexanediol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Carbomer, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tromethamine, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance

This is a lovely lightweight emulsion. Again, the scent is refreshing and it does not leave a sticky film behind. On especially humid days, it may take more patting to adsorb but it is a very nice emulsion to apply in the mornings. I like it because it hydrates without being feeling tacky or greasy, especially for the AM when I don’t want heavy products on my face. It also plays well with my sunscreen and makeup.

Green Tea Balancing Cream

Green Tea Extract (69.5%), Propanediol, Glycerin, Cyclopentasiloxane, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Cyclohexasiloxane, Hydrogenated Poly(C6-14 Olefin), Orchid Extract, Cocoa Seed Butter, Camellia Leaf Extract, Prickly Pear Extract, Tangerine Peel Extract, Tangerine Extract, Orange Extract, Grapefruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Extract, Shea Butter, Betaine, C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside, C14-22 Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Lauric Acid, Myristic Acid, Behenyl Alcohol, Sodium Polyacrylate, Stearic Acid, Arachidyl Glucoside, Arachidyl Alcohol, Palmitic Acid, PPG-5-Laureth-5, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Carbomer, Tromethamine, Disodium EDTA, Ethylhexylglycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Fragrance

And finally, the cream of the series. By itself, it is a lovely lightweight cream. While it is not a gel type, it does not have the greasy feel of traditional creams and does not have the high silicone slip that other lightweight creams tend to have. However, I find that it does not provide enough hydration for my dehydrated combination skin. I need to add more hydrating products (on top of the skin and lotion) for this work as a night cream while in the day, I feel that the lotion is sufficient without the cream, especially when paired with a more moisturising sunscreen.

Bonus, I also sampled the Green Tea Balancing Cleansing Oil.

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Isopropyl Palmitate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Peg-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, Peg-8 Isostearate, Dextrin Palmitate/Ethylhexanoate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Camellia Japonica Leaf Extract, Orchid Extract, Opuntia Coccinellifera Fruit Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Extract, Citrus Tangerina (Tangerine) Extract, Propanediol, Glycerin, Glyceryl Behenate/Eicosadioate, Fragrance

I like this too. It emulsifies well and takes off my makeup easily with minimal tugging. Again, the scent is refreshing and it makes me want to wash my wash. Motivation to cleanse is VERY IMPORTANT, especially for acne-prone but lazy people like me or an unmotivated teenager.

Conclusion

After testing this line for 1 month+, I can see why Innisfree is so popular. The entire Green Tea Balancing line is a sensory enjoyment every time I apply the products. It feels especially refreshing on a hot day and I really enjoyed using it in the AM.

I like that the Green Tea Balancing line focuses on hydration for combination skin and doesn’t take the harsh approach of eliminating oiliness with harsh products. I will actually really recommend this for youngsters who are just starting out with skincare. I wish that this was available in my teenage years and maybe I would have taken better care of my skin instead of suffering the horrific bout of acne brought on by dirt, grime and puberty hormones.

Green tea has antioxidant properties which works to calm acne prone skin, though I’ll probably need to add some kind of spot treatment for active acne. The products are well thought-out and work well together and the scent and light application will motivate people to start taking care of their skin.

For myself, only the lotion maybe a repurchase-worthy item for me as emulsion is a missing step in my routine and I like how I can just use emulsion to moisturise instead of a cream, especially in the mornings. The skin is a nice toner but I prefer a toner with more active ingredients, preferably one with brightening or anti-aging properties, so I will not repurchase this item.

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A great starter kit for combination skin! Super affordable too, especially during Innisfree sales.

 

TL:DR Repurchase? Comments
Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Cleansing Oil Yes Cleanses and emulsifies well.
Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Skin No Prefer a toner with more properties.
Innisfree Green Tea Serum No Dehydrates me
Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Lotion Yes Nice lightweight hydrating emulsion.
Innisfree Green Tea Balancing Cream No Prefer the lotion.

My Beauty Diary All-In-One Boarding Pass and the things I learned from using it

Here’s a round up of the My Beauty Diary All-In-One Boarding Pass sheet masks I’ve reviewed on my instagram @sildaria.

Things I learned from this series:

  • My best sheetmasking speed is about 3-4 a week. I can’t seem to hit the daily sheetmasking speed (yet).
  • I like watery essences more than creamy essences.
  • Seeds and grass work for me(?). I really like the Raw Job Tears and Glasswort.
  • I prefer light moisturisers that are not too high in silicones i.e. high in dimethicone and cyclopentasiloxane
  • I really like the honey gel moisturiser.

 

Look at this pretty array 🌈 of MyBeautyDiary 2-step masks. This is a limited edition All-In-One Boarding Pass box set, which has the entire series of 2-step masks (5 pieces in all), featuring different continents.🌍🌏🌎 Oceania Firming Pack for tired, saggy and wrinkled skin. – Step 1: Glasswort Hydrating Mask – Step 2: Marine Firming Cream Africa Hydrating Pack for dry, flaky, saggy skin. – Step 1: Mango Moisturizing Mask – Step 2: Myrtle Rejuvenating Emulsion Asia Brightening Pack for skin with uneven color or dry coarse skin. – Step 1: Job’s-tears Brightening Mask – Step 2: Wild Yam Hydra Cream America Soothing Pack for damaged fragile skin. – Step 1: Calendula Soothing Mask – Step 2: Cotton Moisturizing Emulsion Europe Clarifying Pack for sappy sallow skin. – Step 1: Black Rose Brightening Mask – Step 2: Rose Honey Refining Gel I’m testing all of them this week! Watch out for future insta-reviews on this series! #rasianbeauty #asianskincare #asianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #mybeautydiary #2stepmask #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmask #skincareaddict

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Africa Hydrating Pack 😊 for dry, flaky, saggy skin. Step 1: Mango Moisturizing Mask This has mango seed extracts to efficiently lock in water, rejuvenating, nourishing and moisturizing the skin. Step 2: Myrtle Rejuvenating Emulsion This has Morrocan Myrtle to help to retain the moisture level in skin, firming up, brightening and giving radiance to the skin. I find the mask very emollient and a bit too moisturizing for my combination skin. It has an almost creamy feel though it appears to be a clear essence. The emulsion is a gel-cream type. Applying it after the mask, it helped the remaining mask essence absorb better into my skin. There was more than enough leftover for me to use it 2-3 times more or for a body application. Overall, this 2-step mask does achieve its purpose of hydration 🌊🌊 🙂 #mybeautydiary #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmasks #rasianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #asianskincare

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Asia Brightening Pack is for skin with uneven color or dry coarse skin. Step 1: Job’s-tears Brightening Mask: This is enriched in Job’s-tears to help to promote white,clear and translucent skin from beneath, lightening dull and uneven skin tone, soothing sensitive skin and giving a healthy glowing look. Step 2: Wild Yam Hydra Cream: This helps reduce fine lines, dryness and rough skin and regains bright and clear skin. Colour me impressed. This mask is a surprise hit for me. The brightening effect is obvious and it actually reduces the redness of my cheeks. Looking at the ingredients, this contains licorice root extract and sodium ascorbyl phosphate (a form of Vit C) which are known and well-researched skin brightening ingredients. My skin loves the thin watery essence and it absorbs well even in the humid weather. I’m definitely going to watch for any Job’s Tears masks from MyBeautyDiary The cream is a light silicone cream (containing cyclopentasiloxane and dimethicone) and it applies well. However, my skin doesn’t like something in this (maybe the silicones?) and I got a slight itching from this. Again, there is more than enough for 2-3 applications. #mybeautydiary #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmasks #rasianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #asianskincare #asianbeauty

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Oceania Firming Pack for tired, saggy and wrinkled skin. Step 1: Glasswort Hydrating Mask: Formulated with Glasswort Aqua Collagen to nourish, rejuvenate and renew skin. Helps tired dry skin become renewed, resilient and firm. Step 2: Marine Firming Cream: Contains collagen to retain skin’s elasticity and energy while reducing fine lines. Skin will look firm and healthy. I’m really loving this My Beauty Diary series. 😍 Glasswort Hydrating Mask is another hit for me. My forehead tends to wrinkle with fine lines when dehydrated. This mask totally plumped up those fine lines and leaving nice firm skin. Overall, this is awesome hydrating mask that leaves a slight glow. 😎The Marine Firming Cream is a decent light cream, which may be better for a drier climate as it leaves a slight sheen. I prefer a more matte finish to avoid the greaseball look. #mybeautydiary #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmasks #rasianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #asianskincare

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Black Roses🌹🌹! How luxurious this is. Europe Clarifying Pack is for sappy sallow skin. Step 1: Black Rose Brightening Mask: for whitening, soothing and moisturizing. Improving dull skin conditions and yellowish-looking skin. Deep repair of skin that will tighten pores and clarify the skin. Step 2: Rose Honey Refining Gel: contains flower honey extract which provides deep repair, brightening and regeneration of the skin. Black Roses🌹🌹, I love the illustration on this mask. The mask itself is very MBD, drippy essence that hydrates and soothes the skin really well. I think the Asia Pack has a better brightening effect. Not certain of its clarifying effect but it did calm down a budding pimple I had. The rose honey gel is my favorite out of all the 2-step creams. It is a very lightweight gel that spreads lightly and feels so soothing to my skin. It maintains the lovely hydration that the mask gives and dries down almost instantly. Definitely my favorite 2nd step in the series, wish they sell this as a standalone product. Need to find a honey 🍯 gel product💕. #mybeautydiary #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmasks #rasianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #asianskincare

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And I’ve finally reached the end of this MBD series. Yes! 🙌 Achievement unlocked: #regularsheetmasking #completingaseries America Soothing Pack is for damaged fragile skin. Step 1: Calendula Soothing Mask: for deep repairing, soothing sensitive skin, improving imbalance skin conditions. Step 2: Cotton Moisturizing Emulsion: provides rich moisture nutrients, softening and calming the skin. Honestly, this is a rather basic hydrating mask. It doesn’t have the brightening effect of some other MBD masks nor did I see any significant redness reduction.  Still it is a nice hydrating mask, just not very memorable. Again the cream is rather lacklustre compared to the masks in this series. This is lightweight cream with less of the silicone slip of the Asia, Oceania or Africa creams. . . #mybeautydiary #sheetmaskaddict #sheetmasks #rasianbeauty #taiwanesebeauty #asianskincare

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TVBS Nu Ren Wo Zui Da/ Lady First 【2016/06/30】

Nu Ren Wo Zui Da (NRWZD) or Lady First, a popular Taiwanese women’s beauty and fashion variety show. I noticed that much of the online Asian Beauty discussion has revolved around K-beauty. T-beauty is less recognised except for MyBeautyDiary and MyScheming sheet masks. Hopefully this will fill a gap in knowledge of T-beauty.

 

Cost Performance so startling that you can’t believe it!

Today’s episode focus on CP value or Cost Performance value – products that are low cost but high performance. The beauty segment is lead by Ms Liu Yan, Taiwanese Beauty Expert and former editor of beauty editor of Marie Claire Taiwan.
03:18 Emma recommends Vecs Gardenia products as a high CP value product line. This is a Taiwanese web brand that specialises in natural products

She doesn’t use toners as her doctor says it is optional. However, Liu Yan clarifies that the older generation of toners are mostly water and thus may be seen as unnecessary. However, the newest reincarnation of toners are more than just water and contain many beneficial ingredients to boost the skin condition from the very first step.

05:46 Liu Yan recommends MyChelle, a US brand that is all-natural as well:

  • MyChelle Ultra Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum – contains HA and Squalene
  • MyChelle Sun Shield SPF 28 – a pure physical sunscreen – she gives a brief explanation of the differences between physical and chemical sunscreens at 06:40.

07:17 Demo: She uses the serum as a toner on Emma, followed by the sunscreen. She recommends a gradual patting motion to apply physical sunscreens to help it apply better.

19:00 Wei Ru minimises cost by removing eye serum from her routine. Instead she uses other multi-purpose products or free deluxe samples of eye products. However, the rest of the team is in shock as eyes are the most delicate area of the face and should receive the most care in product selection.

21:00 Liu Yan identifies Wei Ru’s main issue as dullness and the lack of glow. She recommends:

  • Olay White Radiance light-perfecting mask lotion
  • Olay White Radiance light-perfecting essence
  • Olay White Radiance light-perfecting clear facial oil

22:36 Demo: She uses the mask lotion as both a toner and to lotion mask (separate the cotton pad into thin layers and adhere them to the areas you wish to brighten). Then she applies the essence which contains Sepiwhite and Niacinamide. Finally, she applies the clear facial oil.