su:m37 Secret Programming Essence Product Information **Update: First Impression

su:m37 Secret Programming Essence
su:m37 Secret Programming Essence, available in 80ml and 150ml.

After hearing all the hype about LG’s relatively new brand (debuted in 2007) su:m37, I am anxious to try one of the products supposedly comparable to SKII’s Facial Treatment Essence. I have dry and dehydrated skin, which is exacerbated by the harsh Canadian winter here, so I desperately need a moisture boost. I only received this yesterday and haven’t opened it to try yet, but because so many people are talking about this brand and there is still (to date) no official website in English, I am posting the ingredient lists and the brand info right here.

I bought this from kgoodshop (that’s his eBay ID) by emailing him at kgoodshop[at] He does not sell or list su:m37 on ebay but he actually can sell most of the Korean brands you want, so be sure to email him. I bought an 80ml bottle from him and it costs me US$75 including airmail registered mail by Korea Post, which takes 4 business days to arrive. He is willing to declare a low value so there is no extra fee when the parcel gets here by the way. The order was well packed in a box, with bubblewrap inside and even included samples (of the History of Whoo items), even though I never asked. A truly pleasant and totally trustworthy seller!

Here is the pamphlet that came with the product. Click to enlarge to see the introduction to the brand.
Here is the pamphlet that came with the product. Click to enlarge to see the introduction to the brand.

To my surprise, the product pamphlet is translated into 3 other languages (besides Korean) – English, Chinese and Japanese. So I am pretty confident that this brand was intended for international release.

The complete list of ingredients of su:m37 Secret Programming Essence. Click to enlarge.
The complete list of ingredients of su:m37 Secret Programming Essence. Click to enlarge.

I am very excited about this product! I will be using this starting tonight and will report back in a month. Since this is easier to source than (authentic) SKII in Canada I hope it works out!!

***Updated to add:

Tried it for the first time last night and again this morning! You know there are products you used for a month, not sure whether you wanted to continue because the results weren’t really there, despite sales people telling you to give it a try a little longer, and then there are products you only used a few times but could feel in your gut and skin that it’s going to work? Well, dear readers, this one falls in the latter category!!!!

The texture and feel of su:m37 Secret Programming Essence are almost identical to SKII’s Facial Treatment Essence. It is actually the first time, literally after trying out hundreds of different essences, that one actually comes close to SKII FTE in texture and feel. Although the instructions said to tap for 10 seconds to let the product sink in, my skin soaked it up in less than 4 seconds (same as SKII FTE), but unlike many other essences that sink quickly into my dehydrated dry skin and then my skin feels dry again, this one actually kept my skin well hydrated. The lines are plumped and stay plump for hours. For the first time in a long while, I actually woke up with supple soft and moist skin.

This is paraben and fragrance free too, another great bonus. I just know that this will be my new HG essence and a very possible replacement for SKII FTE (authentic SKII products being hard and expensive to import in Canada) – I will report back in a month, but so far, highly promising!!


210 comments on su:m37 Secret Programming Essence Product Information **Update: First Impression

  1. kman
    January 13, 2011 at 3:47 pm (6 years ago)

    hehe joseibi,
    wish the days already goes by wonder what you think about this one after use, if you like it or not, you always give so honest and detailed information i really love to read your reviews.

    • Joseibi
      January 13, 2011 at 5:13 pm (6 years ago)

      hehehe I can’t wait to try it tonight either!!!! I am practically drooling at the bottle!

      My skin reacts very well to fermented skincare for some reason. SKII’s Pitera works wonders for me and I hope that su:m37 will too! 🙂 I will add to this post tomorrow just to post an initial feel to the product, since smiles, you and Tuyet all said that the product takes a little while to absorb. My dry skin might soak it up right away like a sponge! 😛

  2. hope
    January 13, 2011 at 5:37 pm (6 years ago)

    there is also the newly launched Secret Programming Eye Cream!

  3. Anon
    January 13, 2011 at 9:33 pm (6 years ago)

    Wow, LOOK AT THE INGREDIENTS… amazing!!!

    Korean skin care is truly amazing….!!!

    Love your blog Joseibi!!!

  4. Kev. Jang
    January 14, 2011 at 5:16 am (6 years ago)

    Would love to hear what you think about it, Joseibi. I bought the whole set of Skin Resetting Toner, Skin Resetting Lotion, and Skin Resetting Cream (all meant for dry skin), and got samples of Homme (for men) skin toner and lotion, samples of Waterfull Skin toner and lotion and cream, and also, a complete set of small sample size secret vitalizing eye cream, white active bubble detox mask, secret programming essence and so on, when shopping last in Lotte Duty Free in Lotte World Jamshil. Awesome service in South Korea!

  5. Kev. Jang
    January 14, 2011 at 6:25 am (6 years ago)

    By the way, Joseibi, I can identify with what you said about drying Canadian air. I lived in the prairies for about 3 to 4 years, and it was a horrible thing having 7-10 months which felt like winter what with a mix of days which felt like anything thrown in together. Even my skin which is combination and gets greasy in tropical climates got dried out there. I developed a means to protect the skin there though which might not be the safest for every skin, but I normally use Skinfood’s Avocado Rich Cream as a base moisturizer, and if I need to literally battle a real big blizzard outside when walking, I apply a layer of avocado or sweet almond oil (bought from the organic store) beneath it. You can apply it on top of the cream too instead. the point is , apply only 6 to 8 drops at the most or you will look really drenched in oil on your face after. But because I walked a lot outside even in cold weather, I had to use this method. It worked for me in the prairies and when the weather reaches minus 15 and below. You could try this out.

    • Joseibi
      January 14, 2011 at 11:03 am (6 years ago)

      Thank you, Anon!!! 🙂 I try my best!

      Kev, thanks for your tips! I love sweet almond oil – scent and texture! Looks like you bought a lot of stuff too! would love to hear your feedback on su:m37 as well!

      the prairies…poor you!! Toronto is already bad enough!!!

  6. Kev. Jang
    January 14, 2011 at 11:36 am (6 years ago)

    I’m back in the tropics already by now. Thankfully….Toronto is bad too during its winter, although summer and fall are so beautiful there. But Vancouver still has the mildest weather.
    Yes, my trip to Aritaum and various other places whenever I am in South Korea breaks my pocket a lot, so to say. I always buy stuff for myself, family, and friends, and this actually makes everyone happy, mum included. She beams literally when she sees her Ship Jang Saeng samples and her SooRyeohan skincare sets on the bed!

    By the way, you should try out Hannule GoGyeolJinaek Cream or its skin toner and lotion(if you are fussy about the costs) on Gmarket. Try 고결진액 크림 or if not, the version for mature skin , called Keukjin cream 극진크림. Personally, I would not mind spending 100,000 won at Aritaum for Gogyeol Jinaek Cream, but it costs so much cheaper at 77,500 won on Gmarket! The texture is awesome, feels buttery but sinks in and absorbs easily. Plus, it really is highly concentrated in wild mountain ginseng like Sulwhasoo’s Concentrated Ginseng Cream, but only cheaper and made for younger skin. I got Keukjin cream to try out in sample size(am contemplating starting up a business related to cosmetics but have yet to figure out the costs and stuff and plus, my main job) once, and in sample size it is cheaper than the original size which retails at 225,000 won! Wild mountain ginseng seems to be the selling point of Sulwhasoo and Hannule both.

    • Joseibi
      January 14, 2011 at 5:11 pm (6 years ago)

      Lucky you, to be in the tropics!!!! Been to Vancouver a few times and loved it, though it is too expensive to move there. I’d give anything to be in that part of the world. Miss the mountains and the moist air!!!

      Me, Japan and korea get along very well, although my bank account always complains! I lose all self control in those places. Korean skincare is a nice gift! Your mom and friends are super lucky that you bring goodies back!!! 🙂

      I would like to try Hannule. do you know which manufacturer makes it or is it the manufacturer’s name?

      At one point I loved POINT. Some of the cheaper brands from Korea are just equally good.

      Mind if I ask if you also eat ginseng regularly? A Korean friend of mine said many koreans do, as part of their diet. I wonder if that’s part of their secret to such nice skin too.

  7. Kev. Jang
    January 14, 2011 at 10:13 pm (6 years ago)

    No, Joseibi, I wish that I could afford to eat ginseng although it is a good idea lol….it’s so expensive :p wherever you are. Even in Korea……

    I think that most Koreans have good skin not just by virtue of the skincare there, but also the whole thing about their diet. The kimchi(fermented vegetables) is a staple for every meal, and as a fermented food, it has probiotic functions in keeping the intestines, stomach and body clean of toxins and helps in digestion. Good health is indirectly or directly related to good skin and we all should be aware of that whether we want to admit it or not. No amount of expensive cream will help without a good diet.

    Hannule, or Han-yul in Korean hangeul, is a brand of amorepacific corporation, like hera, sulwhasoo, laneige etc. I loved the textures of Hannule products. It is a new herbal brand though and hence it explains why they are still marketing it only in Korea, because they launched it in 2008. The first flagship store was in Myeongdong inside Aritaum (where else haha) and they even have a spa on the 2nd floor. It seems to be set up to compete against the Whoo Spa in Myeongdong. A friend of mine used to tell me that the Whoo spa was immensely expensive to the point of charging a few hundred thousand won per facial according to their prices, like 250,000won for a basic package!

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 2:09 pm (6 years ago)

      Thank you, Kev!
      I agree too, you are what you eat! my diet is mostly Mediterranean, with lots of olive oil. I don’t eat a lot of carbs or any deep fried food. In my youth my skin was not as good as it is now, not just because I use better skincare now, but because I used to eat junk food. I eat a lot of fish now compared to before, and a lot less sodium. I also eat a lot of kimchi! 🙂

      Oh, now I know Hannule. I knew Hanyul but didn’t know it was the same. I like amore stuff in general. There is a cheap brand called innisfree that I used to sell too, it wasn’t anything special but somehow I liked it too! 🙂

      Phew!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The whoo facials are way too expensive!!! Has anyone tried them? Has anyone tried the Sulwhasoo spa by any chance? I wish I could get it here!!

  8. Kev. Jang
    January 14, 2011 at 11:18 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Joseibi,
    Hannule has a website in Korean,
    Its basic care line is under Chae Eum and Ga Eum respectively (blue for Chae Eum and green for Ga Eum). Ga Eum line is actually under home shopping channels, and Gmarket mainly, as I last checked with a saleslady at Aritaum DOngdaemun, which is why you do not see it in Aritaum. Chae Eum is more readily available.

    For drier skin, I think that Go Gyeol Jin Aek (which I talked about some time back) is probably better. The prices for its range on Gmarket Korea are also way way better than in Aritaum!

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 2:11 pm (6 years ago)

      Thanks, Kev!! 🙂

  9. hope
    January 14, 2011 at 11:31 pm (6 years ago)

    there are a few hannule articles on my site. i have both the purple and red line( called the hospitable line when translated by google.) i have no idea what is its function as i dont read korean but there is an instant tightening n firming action on the skin. is that the one you are talking about kev? or is it the purple color one? sooryehans new line is ace too. joseibi, if your skin likes fermentation stuff, try the sooryehan fermentation line

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 2:14 pm (6 years ago)

      Thanks, hopeinablog, I did try the Sooryehan Hyo line and liked it! Though I still like Whoo better. I am very happy with Whoo so far and I like the su:m37 essence too! Really good stuff!

      You can post your link here, hope. As long as it’s no more than 2 URLs the spam filter won’t kick you out. 🙂

  10. hopeinablig
    January 14, 2011 at 11:33 pm (6 years ago)

    there are a few hannule articles on my site. i have both the purple and red line( called the hospitable line when translated by google.) i have no idea what is its function as i dont read korean but there is an instant tightening n firming action on the skin. is that the one you are talking about kev? or is it the purple color one? sooryehans new line is ace too. joseibi, if your skin likes fermentation stuff, try the sooryehan fermentation line

  11. Kev. Jang
    January 15, 2011 at 12:18 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hopeinablig,

    I think google translation is extremely bad about translating Korean. About Hannule, the red line Keukjin is the premium line and it costs about 225,000 won for the cream itself. Its purposes are firming and anti-wrinkle, and skin cell renewal (pibu jaesaeng in Korean). Also, the whole thing about firming as Hannule Keukjin claims to be able to deliver, is to actually firm the skin for the V-line silhouette of face, according to a Korean TV ad I saw once.

    But the purple line, Go Gyeol Jin Aek, is targetted mainly at wrinkle care, although there is also a wrinkle care (and highly moisturizing) whitening line too called Go Gyeol Mi Baek. Go Gyeol Jin Aek has undergone a recent overhaul in image and product upgrading the last time I went to aritaum, as the staff told me, and the price will be revised upwards again. But based on the old stock of the cream for Go Gyeol Jin aek which they still sold, which I had bought, the texture is buttery and has a stronger ginseng smell than the rest of the other products.
    Soo ryeo han is a good brand, not discounting it. I used to use it and would consider using some of its products again, such as its Red Ginseng Peel-off pack, and its red ginseng cream. But I think that in the drier seasons like fall and winter, especially winter, Sooryeohan does not seem to actually be as effective. It would probably be best reserved for my summer and spring care.
    Hope it helps with my explanation for Hannule! I love those products in all seasons!

  12. Kev. Jang
    January 15, 2011 at 1:31 am (6 years ago)

    @ Joseibi,

    Thanks for the compliments about taking care of myself. I was a model before, and old habits die hard (but it runs in my family. Even my youngest sister looks pretty like Korean singer BoA :p seriously, no joke)

    I am waiting to hear what you say about Su: m programming essence, although I have a small sample of it. If it is that good, I might consider getting it alongside the Youth Activating Night Repairing Cream.

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 2:17 pm (6 years ago)

      Model!!! Wow!!! No wonder you take such great care of your skin!!!! 🙂

      I have dehydrated and dry skin so my skin soaks up the su:m37 essence in no time. I can understand Tuyet when she said that it could feel sticky on her skin (I think hers is combination skin), but if you have dry or dehydrated skin the absorption won’t be a problem.

      So far, so good for me though! Honestly, I hope it gives SKII a run for the money! 🙂

  13. hope
    January 15, 2011 at 5:48 am (6 years ago)

    ooh we must see your photo then kev! i am a gmarket addict and a vip customer, i do my shopping there once a week ! lol. ive just bought some samples of the new whoo gongjinhyang revamp products on gmarket!

  14. hope
    January 15, 2011 at 5:51 am (6 years ago)

    keukjin’s essence serum seems to be really popular in korea. but im quite confused. the essence are sold in 6 bottles of 10ml, and the samples are sold at 10ml too but the price diff is huge. who would wanna buy the real size productss when they are the same amount as the samples and cost 1/8th of the price?>

  15. Tuyet
    January 15, 2011 at 7:50 pm (6 years ago)

    To Joseibi,
    Correction to your prev post my dear…I said that su:m37 absorb alot faster than whoo products did, but when you layers it one product after another it leave a sticky feeling on my skin due to my skin being oily…The product immediately sin into my skin without me having to pat on it…I love both whoo and sum37. I’m so glad that you like it, I’m currently using other sum37 products outside of the whitening line, will let you know how it turns out,

  16. hope
    January 15, 2011 at 10:17 pm (6 years ago)

    I tried the 극진크림 today!극진크림 gives a very matte feeling at the end! I dont think those with dry skin would like that kind of feeling

  17. Kev. Jang
    January 16, 2011 at 12:47 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope, are you sure that it is Keukjin cream? The texture is light as I recall, but it does not feel matte. Most Hannule creams in fact leave a film of moisture on the skin’s outer layer to lock in water. But Keukjin does feel similar to Chae Eum in texture. Dry skin should stick to Go Gyeol Jin Aek as I last said.

  18. Kev. Jang
    January 16, 2011 at 12:52 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,
    Concerning your confusion about the samples being sold in single bottles and the samples’ price difference, you should remember that in South Korea, the practice of most cosmetic outlets and stores is to give samples along with the products you buy. So for example, if you buy the premium grade Go Gyeol Jin Aek skin and lotion, you get Hannule Keukjin Essence free in a few bottles as a gift set. This might often be exclusive to the stores but when it comes to Gmarket, often, because sellers already discounted the price and reduced the price to be affordable compared to the retail stores in Korea(I find that you virtually save a lot of money on Gmarket shopping, but however, the samples rarely come along with them compared to shopping in the retail stores for skincare and haircare), they rarely give samples and sell the samples instead at a little extra money. Hope this clarifies the query. It is a very South Korea practice for cosmetics to give samples at the store!

  19. hope
    January 16, 2011 at 6:50 am (6 years ago)

    ahhh i get it! thanks. is it the cream with red bottle? i think the entire line is great esp the essence!

  20. Kev. Jang
    January 16, 2011 at 6:54 am (6 years ago)

    Keukjin line is in red and gold (gold on the top of the jar) packaging, because it is the premium line. Go Gyeol Jin Aek is purple. Yes, it costs a lot but its herbal ingredients are awesome!

  21. orchidjadedx
    January 16, 2011 at 6:05 pm (6 years ago)

    is an essence as good as an activating concentrate? because i’m debating between this and lancome’s genifique

  22. Anon
    January 16, 2011 at 6:31 pm (6 years ago)

    To orchidjadedx,

    Lancome’s Genifique is horrible. I used it for three months and it did nothing (day and night), looking at the ingredients makes me turn the other way. I was recommended to use it by a friend…. totally regret it now!!!~

    Waste of my money!!!!! Now I only stick to Korean/Asian skin care~

  23. Kev. Jang
    January 17, 2011 at 12:06 am (6 years ago)

    What did Genefique claim to contain that misled you? I actually think that a lot of French and American skincare are mainly hype and claims without delivering , mainly they have some allergens too. Plus, the natural ingredients and antioxidants inside might actually be too low for them to have any effect visibly or quickly on skin.

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 2:44 pm (6 years ago)

      I agree, Anon and Kev. I tried Genefique too, not for long (I wouldn’t want it to be long anyway). I completely agree with you guys. No more of these hyped up brands for me!

      My skin is sensitive, but I almost never reacted to any of the Korean skincare I tried.

      orchidjadedx – essence usually is concentrated, so it depends on the marketing. ‘Activating Concentrate’ is a nice marketing term, but essentially, it’s a treatment essence. I’d take su:m37’s Secret Programming Essence over Genefique anyday. (it’s cheaper and a million times better, with much more concentrated ingredients – over 80 fermented plant extracts!)

  24. Anon
    January 17, 2011 at 4:54 pm (6 years ago)

    You’re right, its all hype! Western brands are just disappointments!~

    And to your question Joseibi (I believe you live in Toronto correct?), I have actually visited the Spa at The History of Whoo (you know the one on Finch?) and it costed me $50 dollars for a whitening facial. That was a special during the summer though of 2010 I dont know their regular prices! But for Sulwhasoo (are you talking about the one on Bloor?) it depends on the hours, for example, 2 hours equals to around $100 which isn’t bad actually haha~

    • Joseibi
      January 17, 2011 at 5:12 pm (6 years ago)

      Thanks, Anon!!

      Is it ok for you to tell me the addresses to these spas? Me and my girlfriend would love to try them together!! I got her hooked on Whoo and Sulwhasoo too! 🙂 The prices are very good compared to the very basic facials I got at Holtz spa (in the Hilton Markham). A basic facial with just Babor products at Holtz costs more than $135 – I would much rather use Sulwhasoo or Whoo products! 🙂

      Thank you in advance!

  25. Anon
    January 17, 2011 at 10:17 pm (6 years ago)

    Your welcome Joseibi 🙂 ~

    Yes of course, the spa in for Sulwhasoo is located in The Amore on Bloor (Korea Town): 685 Bloor Street West, Toronto and their number is 416-533-5211. The lady there is really nice (her English is not so great haha but you can still understand her! Btw, tip, don’t ask her age, I did and she wouldn’t tell me because she told me that she is old and I just couldn’t believe her because she had such FLAWLESS skin… like seriously!!!

    The one for The History of Whoo is in Young and Finch (there is a mini Iranian strip mall across the street and a Pizza Pizza lol): 6080 Yonge Street, North York: 416 226-3748 – called Seoul Plaza. Before you go Joseibi, call them to make sure!!! 🙂

    Oh no, really! Just for basic they charged you $135 thats ridiculous….I am not a fan of Babor skin care though!

    But I hope this helps Joseibi! Lets us know how everything works outtttttt 😀

    • Joseibi
      January 18, 2011 at 4:16 pm (6 years ago)

      Thank, Anon! I have not been to the Amore on Bloor in a very long time! I will definitely try to go there with my friend for some nice girl spa time! 🙂

      I used to live right at Yonge & Finch, it’s too bad back then there wasn’t Whoo. There was the Amore there and that’s about it! Now there are so many korean stores there. Good stuff!

      Thanks again! 🙂

  26. Kev. Jang
    January 18, 2011 at 12:29 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Joseibi and the rest,
    I am not sure why the spa for Whoo in Myeongdong charges so much for a spa session, but supposedly, I think that it could be a whole body treatment. It was a friend who forwarded the link to me(it was all in Chinese), and I have yet to look at it in full(I can read both Korean and Chinese more or less).
    As for the lady in charge at the Amore in K-Town Toronto, I remember that her husband is a professor in U of T (We talked a little bit in English when I was last in Toronto and getting stuff from the Amore….what can I do without my supply of skincare from the Amore lol?…..). They moved a long time ago from Korea to Canada, and are already citizens in Canada. But she is pretty nice and friendly, I recount. Also very knowledgeable about products.

    I got Innisfree as a gift for a good friend when I was in Korea last spring, and have not actually heard from her how the products were. She had complained to me sometime before I got her those gifts of how her BB cream from another unknown brand (made in the tropics in Malaysia) had caused her to break out on the jawline….ewww….so she was hoping that Innisfree would help solve her problems. I will keep you all informed about how Innisfree is and check with her. But Amorepacific products are really efficient here, and for example, I remember that even Happy Bath, which is a toiletries line, is actually quite moisturizing for body and face as a wash.

    • Joseibi
      January 18, 2011 at 4:22 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev,

      The spas in Korea are possibly much grander than the ones here though, maybe that’s why the price is much higher. I saw Sulwhasoo spa pictures on their website and it really blew me away! I think (guess) for the ones here, it’s just a small space they use their products on you, whereas in Korea you get the entire serene experience – in which case the price is definitely worth it! 🙂

      I wouldn’t say Innisfree is a great brand – the products are just nice and I like the packaging, but surprisingly at the time I did like it more than Laneige! 😛 I also used Mamonde at the time (I was 27 I think) – the fragrance was a bit too floral (strong) for me but the products were hydrating enough. I enjoyed Happy Bath (they still sell it here in the Amore stores) too!

      Wow, Hannule, that’s another great brand by Amore. So many hit brands from Korea. I also think a lot of the Korean celebs very beautiful!

  27. Kev. Jang
    January 18, 2011 at 2:33 am (6 years ago)

    @ Joseibi,

    as for Hannule, actually, in between occasional switches of brands and so on, I think I am on my 3rd set (skin toner, emulsion and cream, sometimes with essence or massage essence or cleansing foam thrown in) of Hannule Chae Eum. I really like the texture of the Chae Eum line in the tropics, although I suspect that in Canada, Chae Eum would be too light or just normal, and either Keukjin or Go Gyeol Jinaek might be better for drier skins. My skin is combination, so Chae Eum suits it best. If you give me a choice between Sulwhasoo and Hannule, I would still try Hannule. Hannule has been called the “young version of Sulwhasoo” partially because of its marketing image, marketed by a younger Han Ji Min who is in her 20’s, and she looks about as pretty as Song Hye Gyo who markets and models for Laneige, another Amorepacific brand!

  28. Michael
    January 18, 2011 at 6:05 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Joseibi you have a great blog here (although I am male haha).

    I have a question for Kev. Jang, I read on an earlier post which I should have written there, but you stated that you used the Ja Yang Foam Cleanser (for men)? I am wondering how it is… on the website it states that it has gold and platinum? I need a good Korean cleanser and I’ve been hearing some great things about the history of Whoo products lately. Any tips would be appreciate, THANK YOU!

    • Joseibi
      January 19, 2011 at 11:30 am (6 years ago)

      Thanks, Michael! 🙂 Kev is definitely a wealth of great info!

  29. Aiko
    January 19, 2011 at 12:34 am (6 years ago)

    i completely agree about Mediterranian food. When i lived in Greece i noticed that even very old ones have gorgeus skin notwithstanding sun, poor skin protection and smoking…one old lady [a horrible smoker btw )))] told me that she eats lots of tomato, feta cheese and tons of olive oil, besides, she uses only olive oil as a facial and body skin care and washes with olive soap ))). i use olive oil for body since pregnancy and my body is really firm )))

    • Joseibi
      January 19, 2011 at 11:41 am (6 years ago)

      Dear Aiko,

      I loved Greece!!!!!!!!!!! Went there in 2006, a year before I got pregnant. Loved all the islands. Love the food!!! When we came back to Canada, we brought back an entire suitcases full of olive oil! 😀

      The Santorini tomatoes were truly something. I totally believe you are what you eat. And I know what you mean about the sun – their climate is very dry there as well, so it must be the olive oil because the people there age fairly well despite the smoking, sun and heat! 🙂

  30. Kev. Jang
    January 19, 2011 at 12:15 pm (6 years ago)

    Joseibi, based on the pics you posted of yourself, you don’t look like a woman who has given birth! Kudos on keeping yourself that well-groomed.

    About diet, I am actually hesitant to say that all Korean food is necessarily healthy, if you remember those stores outside along the road in Seoul which sells those stuff like spicy rice cakes (tteokbokki), dwekkim (deep fried stuff which resembles Japanese tempura with all the chilli sauce drizzled in loads over it….soggy….), and sausauges stuffed with lots of glutinous rice. They are so guiltily yummy hahaha……But the thing about Korean food culture is that there is this prevalent belief in food therapy, related to the principle of “eum yang o haeng” (yin yang and 5 elements) which believes that food of different colors and origins can be mixed and matched to create a synergistic lot for aiding the body in its daily functions and repairing it. It transcends the whole need for eating herbal stuff like ginseng or angelica in fact as supplements. This principle probably is the one which prevalently influenced the idea that if you can mix and match food to heal the body, you can also do that in relation to the skin itself. In the museum of Oriental Medicine in Seoul, which I visited last winter, this belief in food therapy is manifested in the various recipes for herbal food, one of them being Kyeong Ok Go (a blend of honey, ginseng and various other herbs and then boiled and blended till it looks really black and sugary in texture). Some Korean cosmetics claim to incorporate that into their mixture, which sounds rather interesting but in fact related to this principle of synergy.

    • Joseibi
      January 19, 2011 at 12:42 pm (6 years ago)

      Thanks, Kev! 🙂

      to be honest, a lot of Asian cuisine isn’t healthy – too heavy on sodium, not enough greens. I personally do not eat soya sauce or fish sauce but it is in some of the food that I eat. I occasionally crave for those things you mentioned (the Korean supermarkets sell those here too! yum) but I don’t really eat a lot of it or on a regular basis. At home I use very little salt as well. My mother just had a bypass a few months ago, so it definitely makes you realize that we are all mortal and what we eat will inadvertently influence our health! It’s good that the Korean people know how to use food as therapy too, kind of like the French paradox, their food is too rich, fatty too, but the average French person is relatively healthy! I guess you just need everything in moderation and achieve that balance.

      Lee – my husband tried Laneige’s homme line years ago, found it too strong (he actually has dry skin, not the typical oily skin types these men’s lines aim for); tried IOPE, too cologne-y; he’s back to his own French based L’Occitane (Verdon line pour homme), it smells strong at first, but the fragrance doesn’t linger and he prefers it like that. The one he really liked is by Kiehls – forgot the whole name but it’s something like Ultimate Facial moisturizer but it wasn’t really gender specific, and is fragrance free. It was nice for me as well, and rich enough for dry skin. Fragrance is a big drawback indeed – I wish they wouldn’t add so much to the products. One big advantage of Japanese brands is that most of their skincare is fragrance free, so I go back and forth depending on how I feel about certain fragrances in the products.

  31. Lee
    January 19, 2011 at 12:18 pm (6 years ago)

    I’m intrigued by su:m37 and their approach to skin care by way of fermentation. I have combination skin so I’m not sure I could pull off wearing the Secret Programming Essence during the daytime (I read another poster who has combination skin said it left her skin feeling sticky). I do agree that what you eat reflects on the outside so eating fermented foods like kimchi and using this probably makes for a winning combination.

    @Kev.Jang: Have you tried Sulwhasoo’s Men and/or Whoo’s Gongjinhyang: Kun line? I’m intrigued by what they claim but am not sure if they have high fragrance or alcohol content. I once tried HERA men’s line but it was a mistake. There was so much fragrance and alcohol that it made my skin red. I hope it isn’t a trend that the rest of korean men’s lines follow. My main concern regarding asian skin care (or any skin care line) is the amount of alcohol some use. I know alcohol isn’t good for skin and I sometimes see it as the 2nd main ingredient. Also, some of the oils that are used such as lavender are skin irritants so I’m always looking at the ingredient list to watch out for harmful substances.

  32. Kev. Jang
    January 19, 2011 at 12:32 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Michael, let me look at the ingredients list on Ja Yang cleanser. I think that the first half of the ingredients list is mostly the chemical composition of cleansing foams such as myristic acid, glycerin and so on. However, the second half of the cleanser includes a LOT of natural ingredients. It’s all in Korean (no English translation of the ingredients…uhhhh…), but as far as I can read, the natural extracts include raw ginger, jujube, gamcho(a Korean herb), globeflower, baek-dan-hyang, cheong-gung, stem of globeflower, chim-hyang, gam-song-hyang, bae-cho-hyang, man-da-rin-ggeob-chil, bong-nyeong, baek-geum, hwi-hyang, jak-yak, tsinyin (a Chinese herb), panax ginseng, magnolia, velvet of deer’s antlers, ginseng flower extract, etc. ….way too many to translate…..I can probably take a digital photo and send a pic of the ingredients list to you
    if you like and if you can read Korean or know those herbs….they are mostly way beyond me, despite my interest in Oriental medicine. I count about 34 Oriental herbal extracts which you cannot find in Western medicine (at least as far as I am aware on my end). It’s a cleanser though, and you won’t leave the stuff on your face for more than a few minutes, so you are better off thinking about a lotion or cream to invest in for skincare alongside the cleanser.

  33. Kev. Jang
    January 19, 2011 at 12:53 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee, I hate the thing about having alcohol and fragrance in skincare, especially men’s skincare. There is this rather weird tendency of a lot of men’s skincare brands to add in these two things thinking that would make the skincare products more marketable for men
    in terms of a masculine image…..especially because men tend to have rougher and thicker skin which would hence react even more to allergenic stuff like these. It baffles me honestly, but it is a trend in most skincare for men, even asian brands. Never knew that HERA for men was like that too!

    I never got the Sulwhasoo men’s range ever precisely because I hated the men’s cologne smell that pervades in the skin toner and lotion(it actually lingers on after you put the lotion on your hands). I tested it out on my hand at a Sulwhasoo outlet in Chinatown Toronto years back, when I used to live there once, and honestly, it was not a pleasant thing to imagine that I am putting men’s cologne on my face which would react….o yes, Whoo’s Gongjinhyang: Kun line for men also has a strong fragrance which smells like cologne. I remember that whenever testing it out at the duty free section of the airport in Incheon-seoul International Airport, and getting skincare….. the cleanser is ok, but not the skin toner and lotion….they all remind me of our grandfather’s cologne and aftershave…..lots of alcohol and cologne additives which only irritates sensitive skin….

  34. Lee
    January 19, 2011 at 3:39 pm (6 years ago)

    Joseibi and Kev.Jang, you are both such a rich resource in skincare knowledge! I love coming back here to read your comments. It’s hard to find the same enthusiasm where I live, haha.

    @Joseibi – I didn’t like any of Amore’s men lines either. Laneige Homme had too much fragrance and alcohol. I remember IOPE’s was slightly better but it also had too much fragrance. The one thing that was interesting was that they had their own version of the Retionol TX. I like some of Kiehl’s products also. Currently I’m using their vitamin C serum and it’s brightening my skin without irritation. I know the face cream your husband uses but I haven’t tried it. I think it comes in a jar and that’s usually a sign of a richer cream which would break me out. I do like their face wash though. Yes, I really like that most Japanese brands are fragrance free, the only thing I don’t like is how much alcohol some of them use 🙁

    @Kev.Jang – I totally agree with you with their being too much fragrance and alcohol in men’s skincare lines. It almost seems like it’s aftershave skincare, lol (think Old Spice aftershave). Yeah, I was really dissapointed in Hera for men because I bought into their advertisements with Jang Dong Gun. Also another dissapointment was Vonin by LG. I saw that So Ji Sub is their spokesmodel and decided to give it a try. Too much fragrance again!!! I was also debating whether to try Mirepa by Amore when I saw Jo In Sung as their spokesmodel but declined because of my previous experiences.

    Thank you for letting me know about your experience with Sulwhasoo for men and Whoo’s Gongjinhyang: Kun line for men. I will definitely not be purchasing if the fragrance is so strong that it lingers for a long time afterwards.

    One of my friends came back from Seoul and gave me a cleanser as a present. It’s Skin79 Homme gentle wash. I’m a little afraid to try it since I can smell the fragrance from outside the box, haha. Have you tried any Skin79 Homme products?

    • Joseibi
      January 20, 2011 at 12:03 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Lee,

      I agree over the fragrance thing. Most Korean products are heavily fragranced! When I used to run as an online store, I had all the stock in my office and the smell was coming from all the different products, it literally gave me a headache! Alcohol is in most products actually, it’s just that in Korean products they mask it a lot better with all that added fragrance but in Japanese brands without the fragrance you smell it more. I believe one of the few brands that don’t use alcohol (or that much of it) is Sofina – it is noncomedogenic, fragrance and colorant free, and select products (the toners) are alcohol free as well. It’s one of the reasons why I love Sofina for so many years. 🙂

      I bought Mirepa for my husband once and he broke out with it. I agree with the fragrance in those men’s products, just way too heavy!

  35. hope
    January 19, 2011 at 5:31 pm (6 years ago)

    kev : are you in malaysia as well?

  36. hope
    January 19, 2011 at 6:45 pm (6 years ago)

    Kev : It says it’s a massage essence, and it doesnt say to wash it off after the massage. Is that it? Thanks

  37. Kev. jang
    January 20, 2011 at 4:40 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Hope,

    I used to live in Canada for the last few years but moved to Singapore recently.

    About the massage essence (Yun Bit Mo) from Hannule, you apply it after the skin toner and before your emulsion. It’s too bad that the directions for application as a massage essence are not as well-explained for English readers. Han Ji Min actually did a video explanation of how to use it which was posted onto youtube by someone, but it has been removed ever since. You apply it onto your palms first, rub it to activate it with heat, and then apply it onto your face, while massaging the vital acupuncture points indicated for the essence. There are two types of massage essence, one for combination to oily skin, the other for dry skin.

  38. Kev. jang
    January 20, 2011 at 4:50 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee,
    About facial washes, I think that generally, unless you leave it on for a long while, or unless your skin is really sensitive, lathering and washing with them generally won’t cause the medical condition of contact dermatitis (sensitive skin reactions caused by allergens or touch with rough or irritating surfaces). You don’t even use them for that long beyond a minute to begin with haha! I have had a sample of The Face Shop Homme Herb fresh Scrub foam, and although my skin is sensitive combination skin, it was fine. I guess it simply has to do with how long you even leave the stuff on your face. If it is to clean your face and you wash it off quickly, it should not cause that kind of problem.

    I have seen Skin79 outlets in South Korea, everytime I go there. They are one of the many mass-marketed skincare brands other than The Face Shop, It’s Skin, Nature Republic, Skinfood, Beauty Credit etc. Never used their skincare lines, but supposedly, Skin 79 is very popular with Taiwanese as a few friends used to tell me. Its BB creams are marketed on infomercial TV in South Korea, by the way.

  39. hope
    January 20, 2011 at 8:18 am (6 years ago)

    ahh thanks kev ! which is the one for oily to combination skin?

    how are u liking singapore? it has such a vibrant gay scene and i wonder how many percent of the men there are actually straight ! hehe

  40. Kev. jang
    January 20, 2011 at 8:42 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,
    I honestly did not know you even pay attention to all that about the party scene…..(no offence to anyone here, but this is not related to the whole topic, not to mention that I cannot for my life get what is so fun about this ‘gay clubbing’ thing, not to mention that you are talking to a guy here….sorry). If you are asking me as a guy what I think about SG, all I can say is, I think South korea is better, cheaper costs of living, more beautiful women, and also, a better mix of both tradition and innovation.

    But about your query, Jeong (ì •)is for normal and dry skin, while Yeon (ì—°) is for oily and combination skin. Hope that helps you. The reason why I know so much is simply because I used to work in a drugstore and know a lot about cosmeceuticals and cosmetics, which was an affiliate section of the store. Otherwise, I would not probably know any more than any one of you.

  41. hope
    January 20, 2011 at 9:53 am (6 years ago)

    i stayed both in singapore and kuala lumpur for a short time. I prefer Kuala Lumpur and i love the city very much! At some point in my life, i would probably return there to stay. Cost of living is so cheap, great food, great ambience, everything is so multi-cultural – it is kind of amazing. In one place, you see a mosque, a chinese temple, an indian temple with all sorts of languages and dialects – it really is amazing ! I am the queen.. the gays love me and wherever there is a gay club in any country- you’ll see me there! Hahaha

    Ah no wonder the Yeon is always out of stock in Gmarket !

  42. hope
    January 20, 2011 at 1:46 pm (6 years ago)

    I was so turned off by the Sofina Jenne Jelly Moisturiser Ingredients :

    Ingredient List: Water, glycerin,, PEG-32,, cetyl-PG hydroxyethyl palmitamide,, glyceryl behenate,, cetyl alcohol,, polyperfluoromethylisopropyl ether,, dimethicone,, butylene glycol,, thujopsis dolabrata extract,, eucalyptus globulus extract,, hydroxyethyl Isostearyloxy Isopropanolamine,, glutamic acid,, cholesterol (sheep derived),, polyquaternium 52,, methylparaben,, fragrance,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  43. Lee
    January 20, 2011 at 5:06 pm (6 years ago)

    @Kev.Jang – What you say about cleansers makes sense. Thank you for explaining about contact dermatitis. The only cleanser so far that I’ve had a bad reaction to was Sooryehan’s Yunha Cleasning Foam. The ginger scent was too strong for my skin which made it irritated and red. Even the SA tried to warn me that the fragrance was strong but I wanted to try Sooryehan anyway. I guess since you don’t leave cleansers that long on your face, you don’t need to spend much money on one.

    It’s reassuring to know that Skin79 is known in South Korea. I’ll try it once I use up my current face wash.

    Oh, and while on the topic, what do you think about powder cleansers? I’ve tried KOSE’s Sekkisei powder wash and like it. It makes my skin feel smoother and lathers up nicely. So far I like it better than the Shiseido Naturgo powder wash one. It doesn’t lather up as nicely and I need to use more of it. If you have any recommendations, I’ll give them a try!

    @Joseibi – I can’t believe that the smell was so strong from the different products that they gave you a headache! It’s good to know I’m not the only one who noticed, haha. I always wondered why there was so much fragrance in Korean products but it makes sense that they mask the alcohol. I’m really tempted to try Sofina Beaute but am wondering if Albion Exage is better. I’ll be going to Japan in April and I want to purchase a set but I’m not sure which one to go for.

    It’s terrible that your husband broke out with Mirepa! I definitely won’t be trying it now. Thank you for the warning!

    @hope – thank you for posting the ingredient list for Sofina Jenne. I’m actually thinking about Sofina Beaute or Albion Exage now. I already ruled out Shiseido since they use so much alcohol in their softeners.

    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 12:39 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Lee,

      Albion’s Exage is good too! I like it better than Shiseido. Sofina Beaute is great also, but for the 30+ skin types. Jenne is for the younger group (20s).

      My husband tried Shiseido Naturgo powder wash…he’s not a big fan of the Naturgo products. It dried up his skin. I used Kose’s Sekkisei powder wash and it was gentle for my sensitive dry skin as well.

      There are lots of goodies in Japan – lucky you! I hope to go back someday…but I don’t think my 3 year old will be happy on a long plane ride! 😛

  44. Michael
    January 20, 2011 at 6:39 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Kev. Jang, thank you very much for the info. I don’t think I will be purchasing the product after hearing how the line smells like cologne, thats nasty! I’d rather get the women’s line because the scent is tolerable. I already use Chanel Allure, don’t want that on my face lol

    Appreciate all your help, happy new year to all!

  45. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 12:20 am (6 years ago)

    Lee : have you heard of this Korean brand called Suiskin? Their Enzyme Powder wash is superb! Sum37 also has their own enzyme powder wash but i havent tried, and Coreana’s Biodefense has it too!

  46. Kev. jang
    January 21, 2011 at 12:26 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee,
    If I am not wrong, ginger is one of the natural ingredients in Sooryehan’s Yunha cleansing foam. My mum likes the cleanser, says that it is quite moisturizing, but perhaps your skin is sensitive to contact with ginger extract. Ginger is surprisingly one of the many Korean ‘herbs’ which they use to purify the body as well as the skin.

    I only used a powder wash once many years back. I think it was the Face Shop Green Tea Powder Wash when they still had The Face Shop in Vancouver Canada. It’s clean, washes off easily and seems to exfoliate dead skin cells, and if I am not wrong, most powder washes are suitable for combination to oily skin. I guess though it is just getting used to the idea of using powder and then wetting it with water to create a lather to wash the face.
    I recently remember seeing Su: m 37 having had a powder wash too, although I am sure the other posters here might have more to say about Su: m’s powder wash if they have tried it. I suspect that it is meant to be used in conjunction with the White Award line, but someone might correct me here.

  47. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 1:39 am (6 years ago)

    Had to share this with you kev :

    Google Translate translated

    이들 여성들은 조금 헤픈감도 있지만 미샤의 브러시 클렌저를 주로 사용하고 있다며 브러시는 피부 트러블과 민첩한 관계가 있는 만큼 깨끗해야 하기 때문에 저녁에 세수할때 항상 브러시 한 두개씩 세척하고 있다고 소개했다.


    These women are a little slut, but Mischa sensitivity used a brush cleanser and brush the skin problems, saying there is a relationship, and agile enough to clean the brush because the evening is always one or two sesuhalttae and explained that three.


    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 12:42 pm (6 years ago)

      LOL @ the slut translation! 😀

  48. kev. jang
    January 21, 2011 at 2:53 am (6 years ago)

    OMG….hahah….the weirdness of Google translators……

    By the way, hope, from the link you posted, it appears that there are actually a lot of Korean websites which sell skincare which are more online portal businesses than real retail store businesses. I have seen a number myself, and it always appears that Koreans are really good with the online business thing. A Korean-American friend of mine is doing her fitness and health supplements business in both English and Korean (online of course), and has been going on at it for a while.

  49. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 6:52 am (6 years ago)

    yes, but i really wish they respond to international customers email ! I am shock that even huge companies like LG or Amore replies to email. I have emailed Amore but with no reply. Same with LG. i went to their facebook page, left a message, and i was so happy when someone in LG replied me and gave me a personal email, but when i emailed it, no one replies and they dont reply me on facebook anymore! haha maybe i shot them with too many questions at the same time !

  50. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 7:25 am (6 years ago)

    doesn’t the Hanyul Premium Line sound amazing?

    극진라인의 특징은 3단계로 피부의 시간을 되돌린다는 것이다. 먼저 피부속의 독소를 배출하고 그 피부의 재생과정을 거쳐, 탄력까지 부여하여 얼굴 윤곽을 또렷하게 해준다.

    특히 주목받고 있는 극진 에센스는 스트레스, 자외선, 대기 중 오염물질 등이 피부에 흡수되어 만들어진 노폐물(독소)를 제거해준다. 독소는 피부저항력을 떨어뜨리고 피부 속 수분을 고갈시켜 탄력을 잃게 만드는 주범이다.

    또한 독소가 얼굴에 남아있을 경우에는 노화가 진행될 수 있는데 극진에센스는 피부에 악영향을 끼치는 독소를 제거하는 디톡스 성분(독소배출)이 포함돼있다.

    한편, 소비자들의 높은 가격이 부담스럽다는 의견에 대해 한율 측은 “한율의 가장 큰 강점은 우리 땅에서 믿을 수 있는 100% 한방원료를 사용한다는 것이다. 스킨․로션에는 금산에서 자란 6년근 인삼이 12뿌리나 들어가 있으며 에센스와 크림에는 인삼 뿐 아니라 한방 어린 송이가 원료 들어가 있다.

    이어 그는 “아무래도 믿을 수 있는 한방재품, 좋은 원료로 사용하기 때문에 가격이 비쌀 수밖에 없다”라고 설명한다.

    해당 제품은 아리따움에서 설 특집 한정으로 스킨, 로션, 크림 3종 세트를 25만원에 판매 중이다.

  51. kev. jang
    January 21, 2011 at 9:02 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope, sounds like a hefty lot to digest for text. It’s generally a trend of most South Koreans not to respond to emails, haven’t you heard before? That was what I was told by a former university lecturer of mine, although I am not sure if it is perfectly true. About the text, there are a few things which you probably just need to know, 1. that it aids in skin renewal (jaesaeng) and elasticity (talryeok), 2. highly moisturizing (soobun), made from 6 years’ cultivated Mt. Geumsan ginseng, with 12 sprigs’ essence in each essence, 3. is highly nutritious to the skin, 4. 100% natural Oriental herbal ingredients, 5. a premium line of AmorePacific cosmetics products, 6. the whole set of skin, lotion and cream costs about 2500,000won in total! That is pretty expensive for one whole set lol.

  52. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 9:17 am (6 years ago)

    ohmygosh hahah thats so expensive. everyone’s gonna end up buying the samples instead on gmarket ! hehe . we should get married if you’re not already :X hhaha

  53. kev. Jang
    January 21, 2011 at 11:05 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,

    Keukjin Cream costs around 225,000 won in Aritaum in Korea. I think the skin and lotion are cheaper each.

    Even Go Gyeol Jinaek cream costs around 100,000 won in aritaum.

    You should check out the price of Sooryehan Soo Cheon-nyeonbang which is the newest line of products by LG Sooryehan, and sold in Beautiplex in Korea(the official seller of LG cosmetics). It’s 230,000 won just for a cream! Phew….I wonder how people could bear to pay for that in retail stores…..honestly, the market of Oriental herbal skincare in South Korea is very saturated, I mean, VERY saturated, and even in normal stores and distributors off the streets in Seoul, you can see loads of other brands which claim to contain this or that Oriental herbal extract for some benefits……the prices vary from 10,000 won for something which claims to contain ginseng powder in its face wash to what we have seen in the case of 225,000 won for Keukjin cream! That is a really big range.

  54. kev. Jang
    January 21, 2011 at 11:08 am (6 years ago)

    Oops, I got the price wrong. 25 ‘man’ means 250,000. I suspect they meant the individual product.

  55. Lee
    January 21, 2011 at 12:27 pm (6 years ago)

    @hope – I haven’t heard of Suiskin but thank you for the link. I’ll be on the hunt for the powder wash and will let you know what I think when I try it. So far, I’ve only tried Sekkisei and Shiseido Naturgo powder washes. Let me know what you think of the Sum37 one when you try it 🙂 Oh, and there is a Coreana store where I live so I’ll ask if they have that line next time I’m in the area. Thanks for your helpful tips!

    @Kev. Jang – It’s interesting your mom says that the cleanser is moisturizing. My skin has a problem with products that are too moisturizing (I have oily/combination skin). I remember trying Sulwhasoo’s emulsion and breaking out because it was too rich. I felt a sudden sense of hydration and then an oily film that didn’t go away until I washed my face. I know it’s not the typical Sulwhasoo experience but I tried it during summer so maybe that had something to do with it.

    I’ll keep in mind what you said about the ginger extract. I have no problem eating ginger in foods or even drinking ginger tea (so good for your skin and I like the spiciness!) though. It’s kind of funny that what’s supposed to purify my body might cause the allergic reaction, haha.

    Thanks for your experience with face washes. There is a Face Shop where I live so I’ll see if they have any powder washes there. Since I have combination skin, I do find that powder washes help make my skin smoother. I recently changed my skincare regimen to include powder washes and got compliments from my aesthetician on how smooth my skin felt.

    Regarding Sum37’s powder wash, I think I might skip it if I have to use it in conjuction with a whitening line. I already have pale skin (no freckles, yay!) and I’m afraid of using whitening lines in general due to past experiences. A few months ago, I was given samples of Neutrogena’s Fine Fairness and Laneige’s White Renew and they didn’t agree with my skin. Fine Fairness made my skin oilier than usual and White Renew caused redness. My main focus right now is in brightening my skin so I’m using a vitamin C serum and it’s working out well. I’ve had several friends say that my face looks bright, haha.

  56. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 12:36 pm (6 years ago)

    kev : when you mention the sooryehan’s new line , are you talking about the purple packaging bottles? they are absolutely beaaaautiful. What is the new line for?

    ah, i realize that korean does sound very similar to cantonese or certain chinese dialects! like ‘man’ is also ‘man’ in cantonese.

  57. Love
    January 21, 2011 at 1:10 pm (6 years ago)

    Hello :).. My lovely Korean friend introduced me to this line and even bought me sets of each line too! Sadly, I am not a big fan of Su:m37 products, it really is, in my opinion, an OKAY line. Compared to Sulwhasoo/Whoo, the latter is 100 times better. The Centenica 1909 Cream, did not do much for my 50 year old skin, while the Hwanyugo Cream really worked wonders – people think I am 43. Su:m37 products just sat on my skin, which is why I used it at night. This is my own personal experience though, some might love the feel! 🙂

    The only great thing about this brand is it is colorant free, fragrance free and preservative free 🙂

    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 12:59 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Love,

      Thank you for posting your feedback! I love to hear it even if it’s negative!!!

      I still 2 more weeks to go on my trial (I have the 80ml version) and I will be posting my review around Valentine’s Day. You know what, you aren’t the first person to say that su:m37 products just sit on your skin. there are a couple of posters who said the exact same thing. I haven’t tried the rest of su:m37 products other than the Secret Programming Essence yet so I can’t comment on the absorption of its creams and such, so far the essence sinks in my skin quite well because it is quite liquid, but I don’t doubt what you said about the other products.

      I totally agree about the Hwanyugo. It is a luxurious cream and works great. Love it! Wish I could afford the full size!!! 🙂

  58. hope
    January 21, 2011 at 2:52 pm (6 years ago)

    also i realized that there isn’t a line for oily/acne skin for Sulwhaso/whoo/sooryehan/hannule. Whoo discontinued their line for the oily and acne skin. Why why why? Does Sooryehan or Hannule have a line for oily/acne skin?

  59. limbo
    January 21, 2011 at 3:04 pm (6 years ago)


    you can take care of your oily skin without using products recommended for oily skin. laneige could be suitable for you since some teenagers in korea tend to have oily skin and their products help with oil imbalance. but sulwhasoo, the history of whoo, etc are for older women (asian) who don’t have oily skin which is why they don’t focus on products for oily skin since it is not popular. living in korea and being a korean, most of us have dry skin, which is why our skin care products are made for dry skin people. i suggest you hydrate your skin and protect your skin from the sun, and eat healthy to help with oil imbalance 🙂

  60. Kev Jang
    January 22, 2011 at 12:43 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,
    Hannule has a line, Ga Eum, which is probably the lightest and best suited to oily/combination skin (not for acne though). On the whole, this line is not sold in the retail stores and has been phased out to be sold on home shopping channels in South Korea since summer/fall 2010.

    I think that the reason why these Oriental herbal brands do not have an oily skin range is because their target age range is people in their 30’s and beyond, especially those of a more mature age group. Mostly, by that age, the assumption is that they are more concerned with anti-aging and wrinkle care than controlling over-active sebaceous glands in the skin.

    The Cheonnyeongbang line for Sooryehan Soo is a new line, and its purple packaging looks really royal. Supposedly, it’s for anti-aging and is based on a court secret formula meant initially for royalty. I think though the texture is quite thick and buttery and might not be suitable for oily skin, unless you are living in winter right now.

  61. Kev Jang
    January 22, 2011 at 12:51 am (6 years ago)

    I might have gotten the name of the new line wrong here for Sooryehan. It’s Cheon-hae-yoon.
    Not sure whether people think the same way but I have heard that for people who have to deal with winter that Sooryehan’s creams’ textures were a little light for winter and did not moisturize enough surprisingly. Is that true? I have used the Red Ginseng Juice cream for Sooryehan before and did not find that problem myself since my skin tends to be oily in summer.

  62. hope
    January 22, 2011 at 11:35 am (6 years ago)

    i havent tested the new sooryehan line, though i have the samples! hehe

    i tested the Hannule Whitening Serum and Cream, funny that they don’t have a balancer and emulsion in that line! The serum is rather thick for a serum and is white in color! hehe. The cream is rather light too which i love. Much lighter than the Red Premium line’s cream!

  63. hope
    January 22, 2011 at 11:42 am (6 years ago)

    is the red ginseng cream the one that has that two sticks protruding out on it’s cap?

  64. Kev Jang
    January 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,

    Hong-Sam Soo Cream(Red Ginseng Juice Cream) by Sooryeohan is not as expensive as the Sunyu line(Sunyu has two sticks portruding on its cap) lol.

    Lucky you to get the Sooryeohan samples. Do tell me how they are when you have tried them. I could always get them as a gift for mum and family next time in Korea.

    The Go Gyeol Mi Baek line in Hannule is a part of the premium Go Gyeol line (is that the cream and serum you are referring to?). That cream is even more expensive than the Go Gyeol Jinaek cream, as I remember, priced at 120,000won. I am not so sure whether you meant the cheaper Myeong-Eum Jin cream though. That one is sold online mostly and is way cheaper.

  65. hope
    January 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm (6 years ago)

    this is the one im talking about :

    still find it weird that it doesnt come with the normal lotion and emulsion combo that all the soorye/han/whoo/sulwha usually has for each line !

  66. hope
    January 22, 2011 at 12:51 pm (6 years ago)

    what is the sunyu line for?

    The samples are so cheap on Gmarket ! haha i love gmarket and i am totallllly addicted to it !

  67. Gal
    January 22, 2011 at 1:47 pm (6 years ago)

    Ohhh I love sum37 products too Joseibi!!! Thanks for posting the ingredients, mine is in Korean LOL can’t read it unfortunately. Im so happy you love it Joseibi! I hope you keep us updated on this product 😀

    To Hope,

    I like your blog: Hope In A Blog, but you seem to purchase so much from Gmarket, isn’t it overwhelming, and you barely have a chance to review anything… I don’t want to intrude, but I think you should stop purchasing so much (its a total waste of your money). You already purchase great skin care, just use them until its done, and then go an purchase when its all done. Products won’t work if you keep switching between them, you need to stick to one line for your skin to adjust to see results.

    This is just a genuine concern Hope. 😛

  68. hope
    January 22, 2011 at 4:22 pm (6 years ago)

    thanks gal! hopeinablog is a group of people – though i do most of the writing, we usually switch our products after using it for a few weeks each time . so usually each of us order a line of a brand and then we would have enough the switch it around.

    we haven’t been doing much reviews lately as most of us are on holidays , and there are many preparations before writing the review – photos, tests etc – and most of us havent had the time since it’s the season of holidays and exams ! we are writing some reviews at the moment which will be published soon!

  69. Kev Jang
    January 22, 2011 at 10:34 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Hope, so you and your friends have a blog about skincare? What is the address?

  70. Kev Jang
    January 22, 2011 at 11:00 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope, it appears like the samples for whitening which you got from Hannule were Go Gyeol Mi Baek samples. Actually, if you are wondering why there are no lotions or balancers, it is not that true actually. The Go Gyeol Jinaek (purple packaging) skin toner and emulsion are meant to be used in conjunction with Go Gyeol Mi Baek cream and sun cream. That is, if your emphasis is on whitening and brightening in your personal skincare routine.

    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 1:23 pm (6 years ago)

      I read this before, thanks! My little brochure (which I posted) has some good info too. 🙂

  71. hope
    January 23, 2011 at 11:30 am (6 years ago)

    kev jang : it’s !

    You should be our guess writer from time to time !!

  72. hope
    January 23, 2011 at 11:32 am (6 years ago)

    ahhh really? i didnt know that ! The purple line also has it’s own cream no? if im not mistaken the cream was launched just this month and is the first ever korean ginseng enzyme treatment cream or something like that. i know the purple line also has a eye and lip cream.

  73. hope
    January 23, 2011 at 1:51 pm (6 years ago)

    i realize that in all the whoo products ( at least those which have ingredient list in english posted online which i’ve seen ), butylene glycol is number 2 on the list !

    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 1:28 pm (6 years ago)

      Yes, indeed, hope. Many skincare products (regardless of where they are made) contain a lot of the ‘nasties’. When it is something I like, I look the other way (some are necessary ‘evil’)! LOL

  74. kev jang
    January 23, 2011 at 11:36 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Hope,
    Go Gyeol Jinaek cream for Hannule has been around for a while, just that it was upgraded and revamped in terms of packaging and formula. Actually I won’t agree that the cream is Korea’s first ginseng enzyme cream. Danahan (from Somang) has always had its red ginseng creams for a while, including its RG-II cream(RG-II is a component of red ginseng juice which has been scientifically proven in an academic research paper to aid in skin functions and improving it against aging). Sulwhasoo also had its concentrated ginseng cream for a while.

    As for butylene glycol, I think that the scare against propylene glycol and butylene glycol is perpetuated by a bunch of vegans and organic movement activists who claim that this and that chemical can cause cancer. It’s largely based on myths and misinformation. Butylene and propylene glycol can both actually be used to bring the active ingredients of a cosmetic product deeper into the skin and both are actually more effective than the media targetted at them claims them to be. (You can check the cosmetic ingredients glossary of Paula Begoun’s “Never Go to the Cosmetic counter Without Me”)

  75. kev jang
    January 23, 2011 at 11:40 pm (6 years ago)

    O, about writing on your behalf as a guest writer, it would be nice. Contact me if you need me to write anytime.

  76. hopein
    January 24, 2011 at 12:21 am (6 years ago)

    hi kev, you can write anytime and anything u want and when you are done with an article just send it to, and we’ll publish it directly! oh btw do email us with your email so we can keep it.

    is the new sum37 time reset line for acne skin?

    from the pics, it seems so!

    and the secret programming eye cream looks divine too! 😀

  77. Elly
    January 24, 2011 at 9:08 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Joseibi, once again you’ve sparked a hefty conversation with this blog! I’m going to add su:m37 products to my ‘list of skincare to try’ since it’s already growing so long from when I first noticed your blog!

    Hope, I had a look at your website and I’m SO thankful for your gmarket tips and tutorials. I get so overwhelmed by the flashing images, I feel like I’m going to have an epileptic episode!

    Kev Jang you’re my hero. I wish I knew more guys interested in looking after their skin and appearance (my partner in particular) as I can’t even get him to use a cleanser or a moisturiser. Sigh. Keep posting your advice on male skincare whenever you can please! I just bought the Laneige Homme skincare pack for a friend but I didn’t realise the fragrance and irritation problems… I’ll definitely look into an alternative for my partner.

    Since we’re on the subject of yin&yang skincare product balancers, can we have a blog about what types of good ‘skin foods’ are out there (if you’re already consuming any) – Joseibi, Hope, Kev Jang? I’m already going to buy a large tub of kimchi tomorrow from my korean grocery. Hehe.

    Thanks so much for your advice as always.
    Elly. xo

  78. hopein
    January 24, 2011 at 1:53 pm (6 years ago)

    Elly, usually asians or chinese in particular believe in bird’s nest. they spend thousands of dollars drinking bird’s nest. also they are very particular with their soups. if you’re ever in asia/china.hongkong/taiwan/malaysia/singapore.. go to these herbal shops and buy these soups packets which you can cook yourself at home. they usually contain koji berries, dang gui, angelica roots, white fungus.

    it also depends on your type of skin – if you have acne skin, or you have pimples that pop out due to stress, lack of sleep etc , you can brew those ‘cooling’ tea to cool down the ‘over-heat’ of your body which causes these pimples to pop out.

  79. hopein
    January 24, 2011 at 3:42 pm (6 years ago)

    hi kev, you can write anytime and anything u want and when you are done with an article just send it to hopeinablog @ gmail . com, and we’ll publish it directly! oh btw do email us with your email so we can keep it.

    is the new sum37 time reset line for acne skin?

    from the pics, it seems so!

    and the secret programming eye cream looks divine too!

  80. Iffy
    January 24, 2011 at 4:04 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Joseibi! I love sum37 products!!! They work so well for me 🙂

    to hopein,

    Yes the sum37 time reset line is for acne skin, and troubled skin, works very well for clearing up acne and pimples!!! Plus, all natural 😀

    Informative blog you have Joseibi!!!

  81. Lee
    January 24, 2011 at 4:50 pm (6 years ago)

    @hope & Iffy – have you tried IOPE’s Trouble Clinic line? I used it before and it worked well on my skin. I’m wondering how it would compare to the new sum:37 time reset line.

    @hope – I checked your blog out and I love it! It’s so informative 🙂 Don’t be surprised if I post there one day, haha.

  82. Iffy
    January 24, 2011 at 9:29 pm (6 years ago)

    hi Lee,

    I have tried the IOPE Trouble Clinic Spot Shot with the patches that came with it. It was okay for me, it didn’t really clear up my acne unfortunately.

    Compared to the sum37 time reset, IOPE’s was more thicker in terms of its consistency, considering it is recommended for oily skin lol it did not really help decrease oil production nor help with blemishes. Sum37’s is moisturizing but not thick, and I saw results with it. I don’t have the ingredient list, but from what I can recall…. everything was natural from the top to bottom ingredients listed – and the creams absorb right away into the skin. I saw results within a month… I just love sum37 ^^ for being natural

    Lee, I am not sure if you know Sulwhasoo….its very popular in Korea… On the topic of acne, I tried the Sulwhasoo Herblinic Restorative Ampoules and it really restored my acne and blemish skin, this is A BOOSTER for your skin, and I recommend it to those who need help with clearing acne…I found a blog discussing it: for more information ^^

    ….have you tried any history of Whoo products? I heard they are good and effective… 🙂

  83. Kev Jang
    January 24, 2011 at 10:23 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi iffy,

    The last time though I was in South Korea, the lady at the su: m counter told me that Time Resetting is a line for moisturization and dry skin. It is probably lighter than a lot of products such as Sulwhasoo by comparison, but from the feel of the testers and all, I suspect they are more for dehydrated skin. Of course, because they are made from fermentation of natural ingredients, its acidic composition probably helps to alleviate conditions like acne too. Even from the blog entries, the ‘patient’ was noted to suffer from dry skin.

    Waterfull line is better for acne and oily skin honestly because it is lighter than Time Resetting line.

  84. Kev Jang
    January 24, 2011 at 10:30 pm (6 years ago)

    The three patients suffered from different conditions. The first one had oily skin which was acne-prone, while the 2nd one had troubled skin (this term means a lot of things and could either mean sensitivity or acne blemishes), and the 3rd one had dry skin. As for the column below, in text, the two other people had combination skin and acne-ed skin respectively.

  85. Elly
    January 25, 2011 at 1:11 am (6 years ago)


    I have seen theoe packets of herbal ingredients used in soups, teas, etc, and I’ve bought one or two types to try from my local chinese grocery. Do you add them to chicken stock soup or pork bone soup? I’m not sure how to prepare them, haha but I’ve seen bits of them used in hot pot.

    I don’t have acne but living in Australia, I break out in little bumps on my skin occassionally from the humidity. I guess the ‘cooling’ foods would counteract this somewhat?

    My background is Vietnamese and my dad has always touted about certain ‘heating’ foods being: mango, watermelon, food containing too many preservatives (e.g. packet noodles) and ‘cooling’ foods like bitter gourd, cucumber, papaya and asian greens in general.

    I’d be interested to hear if this advice is reflected in other cultures too! These tidbits always fascinate me even if they’re not backed scientifically.


  86. Kev Jang
    January 25, 2011 at 2:13 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Elly,

    Talking about humidity, it reminds me of something. A reason why some skincare products seem to actually be ‘unsuited’ to a person’s skin(that it leaves a shiny layer) is also the degree of humidity (or dryness) in the climate that he or she is living in. For example, in the tropics, where humidity is high, if I apply a buttery cream, the cream will tend to leave a rather shiny layer on my face since my skin is combination skin with dry areas, and in fact, what Joseibi and the rest said about Whoo Soo Yeon cream not being hydrating enough might not be true.

    We also have to remember that a lot of these creams, essences, lotions made in Korea are manufactured with the South Korean weather in mind. South Korea has a relatively temperate climate with 4 distinct seasons unlike other countries like Canada, Australia, or even countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, HongKong. For that very reason, something which someone claims to be too rich or nourishing in the tropics as a skincare product might be just nice in places where humidity is low such as Canada.

  87. Lee
    January 25, 2011 at 12:51 pm (6 years ago)

    Dear Joseibi,

    Thank you for your feedback! I’m so tempted to try Exage since I read somewhere that some of the royal family uses it (not sure how true this is, lol).

    I’ll keep in mind what you said about Sofina Beaute and Jenne. Oh, I saw some cm’s of Jenne and I think they are after the Suisai crowd!

    The Shiseido Naturgo powder hasn’t dried up my skin but I just don’t feel it doing much, haha. I might try HABA’s powder wash and some korean brand recommendations the kind readers here suggested.

    Yes, I’m so excited for my trip but i wonder what the SA’s will think when they see a foreigner so interested in their products, haha. If you have any other skincare product recommendations please let me know! I’m thinking of getting the CURE gel to see if it’s better than the Laneige Strawberry exfoliator.

    Oh, and if you have any Tokyo spa recommendations please let me know. So far the best place I’ve been to is in Seoul. I still have pleasant memories of the best facial ever!

    @Iffy – thanks for your feedback on IOPE Trouble Clinic. I used the toner, emulsion and serum. I used it in combination with the Retinol TX but I couldn’t tell which one was helping me out more. I stopped using it though because it wasn’t moisturizing enough. Fortunately, all my acne has gone away so now I’m just on the lookout for good moisturizers for combination skin.

    I do like the idea of sum:37 not using any fragrance or preservatives. My major issue with most skincare companies is the amount of fragrance they use. It sounds tempting to try but it’s just not easy to get here where I live. I could do the whole Gmarket thing but I usually prefer getting samples first.

    I have heard of Sulwhasoo since there is an Amore store close to where I live. I don’t know if they have the Herblinic Restorative Ampoules but I can check. Thank you for the blog link, it was a good read! It sounds like a good booster but right now I’m not battling acne anymore. My main focus now is just to brighten my skin. I don’t necessarily want to whiten but just brighten.

    I haven’t tried any Whoo products. I was going to try the men line but Kev.Jang described them as being too fragrant. The Whoo line seems designed for more mature skin so I’m afraid they would be too rich for my combination skin.

    @Kev.Jang – thank you for the info on the Waterfull line.

    @Elly –I went through an acne phase that is now fortunately gone. These are some of the fruits and vegetables that helped me get a clearer complexion: cantaloupe, tomatoes, berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, etc.), plums, sweet potatoes, broccoli, spinach and carrots.

    Also, I drink a lot of tea. Two of the ones that have helped my skin a lot are white tea and rooibos (also known as African Red Bush tea). One more thing that has helped is powdered kale. You just mix a spoonful of the powder to any drink and let it help your skin. Hope the tips help!

    • Joseibi
      January 25, 2011 at 1:40 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Lee,

      I will have to live vicariously through you for your trip to Japan! I didn’t visit spas back then (I went 8 years ago) but I went to a lot of hotsprings. Love those!!! They made my skin really soft!!

      The Japanese SAs aren’t very aggressive from what I remember. They are very pleasant even if you don’t buy anything!

      HABA’s powder wash is nice and gentle, by the way. Regarding the peeling gels, I actually like the Coreana Nokdu one more than Laneige’s – it’s more hydrating but not greasy, and your skin really feels fresh (but not dry) afterwards! It’s also cheaper than Laneige’s, if you want to give it a try. Here in Canada the Nokdu one sells for about $18 (with tax). I believe Lala used CURE before and said it was good, it’s fragrance free I think so that’s a big plus!!!

      Have a great trip!! 🙂

  88. Kev Jang
    January 26, 2011 at 1:00 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee,
    You are welcome about the opinion about Waterfull line for su:m37. I have yet to try the su: m products which I got in Korea, since I am still finishing my Hannule set.
    However, from what you have said so far about your combination skin, I assume that it tends to get dry in winter, but oily in summer? You also said something about Sulwhasoo being too shiny on your skin, in that it sits on it. Maybe you can try Hannule Chae Eum line as an alternative, if you can get any access to Gmarket Korea from your end. I normally get Hannule from Gmarket in a whole set of 3 (skin toner, lotion/emulsion and cream) from 2 sellers on Gmarket and they ship very quickly. Can point them out to you if you like. (Hannule does not have a men’s line, and plus, their products are quite good for sensitive skin)

    If your skin needs hydration, you can also try Coreana Nokdu series, and if it is brightening, Coreana Bichui GaIn BaekYoon, if there is a Coreana store in your area. It has been a really long while since I last tried Coreana(I am literally hooked onto my Amorepacific corporation-manufactured and LG-manufactured skincare products for the most part, since they work), but I remember a Coreana Nokdu Repairing Treatment Toner which worked really well during winter when I layered it with the other products like lotion and cream, in that it does moisturize the skin, and plus, it is low in alcohol and does not sting one bit.

  89. Kev Jang
    January 26, 2011 at 10:49 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Lee,
    About Whoo, actually, technically I only think that the men’s line might be the most heavily fragranced. But the rest of the products are actually quite acceptable in terms of the fragrance department. I would think that the Soo Yeon range is alright for combination skin, as compared to the dry skin issues which some other posters here have been concerned about. Soo Yeon cream and essence are relatively light as far as I recall. In Yang Balancer and Lotion also are quite ok. You might want to consider them as alternatives to the male line.

  90. hopein
    January 26, 2011 at 12:08 pm (6 years ago)

    Btw i convinced Martha to try the Sum37 Secret Programming Essence. She finally ordered it from Kgoodshop. it’s her first korean product so she’s exited. so we should be able to see her review on the sum37 essence in the coming months on truthinaging

  91. Lee
    January 26, 2011 at 1:43 pm (6 years ago)

    Dear Joseibi,

    Can’t wait for the hotsprings either! I’m glad you said the Japanese SA’s weren’t too aggressive. Last time I went to the Coreana store the only Nokdu product they had was the foaming cleanser. I think I’ll have to scour eBay for the whole set, haha.

    Thank you for your good wishes. I’ll be bringing back so many goodies, haha.

    Hi Kev Jang,

    I still can’t get over how knowledgeable you are about skin care! You described my skin perfectly, I’m really impressed! My skin does get dry in winter and oily in summer so I change products when the season changes. Hannule seems like a good brand from what you described. I don’t mind if they don’t have a men’s line as long as it works on my skin, haha. Can you please point out the 2 sellers on Gmarket that sell Hannule? I’ve never used Gmarket before and it seems a little intimidating but I saw hope posted instructions on his blog.

    Joseibi and you have both recommended the Coreana Nokdu line so I think I’ll have to hunt it down since the store in my area only carries the foaming cleanser. The Bichui GaIn BaekYoon sounds really interesting though.
    I don’t like using alcohol in my toners so I try to find those that are alcohol free (currently I’m using an Estee Lauder one) but if you recommend the Coreana one then I can try it also. Also, I don’t like using creams since they are generally too heavy for my skin. I like lotions better but sometimes it’s hard finding one that hydrates enough since a lot are designed to be layered with a cream.

    Thanks for clearing up my misunderstanding. I’m glad the whole Whoo line is not as fragrant as the men’s line. I”ll check if the LG store I go to has finally gotten the Whoo line. They are an LG store and carry Sooryehan but don’t have Whoo! I’ll check for Soo Yeon and In Yang.

    Oh, since you are in Singapore now can you recommend some sunscreen brands? (a friend who lived there said the sun is harsh). If there are any Japanese ones on your list I want to stock up for the summer. Currently, I’m using a Shiseido one. Thank you again!

  92. hopein
    January 26, 2011 at 3:43 pm (6 years ago)

    The renodigm dual care from sulwhasoo is ace, but it’s not a sunscreen! SPF 30 with anti wrinkle stuff in it but it is light and not greasy !! LOVES

  93. hopein
    January 26, 2011 at 6:55 pm (6 years ago)

    there are some super promo on sooryehan on gmarket

  94. Kev Jang
    January 26, 2011 at 11:46 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Lee,
    Search under this link,
    The seller’s name is 뷰티클릭.
    Gmarket Korea recognizes Korean search words better than English in its functions somehow. I think that since your skin is combination(like mine), you should opt for the set of 2 (skin and lotion) instead of 3(skin and lotion and cream/essence). Of course, if you are in winter now, you can always get an extra one. Where are you actually?

    I think that the Korean skincare brands in Singapore are actually not as varied as in the USA or South Korea. For one thing, the heavy import taxes means that merchants mark up prices a lot(by at least 3 to 4 times their original Korean prices!!!!). I normally purchase stuff from Gmarket or ebay as a result. Sooryehan’s sunscreens and O’hui’s sunscreens are not that bad, and I got both a Sooryehan Go (for men) sunscreen and O’Hui sunscreen when in Korea a few weeks ago. They are way cheaper than a lot of sunscreens too, about 25000 won or so! O yes, if you are looking for a great line for combination skin, from Sooryehan, you should also look at Cheongyun line from Sooryehan(in light blue packaging). It’s quite suited to combination skin with its light texture as far as I recall.

    About Coreana, actually they have a really big range of stuff. I saw the whole range of stuff sold in E-Mart(in Korea) and also distributors when in Seoul during Christmas. I think that Bichui GaIn has about 3 different ranges, BaekYoon (for whitening), DaYoon (for highly moisturizing), Cheon Bi Bang (for anti-aging). But supposedly, in the airport in Seoul-Incheon, they also sell Coreana, and the line of Zain, an Oriental herbal line of Coreana, which happens to be a more updated and upgraded version and better than Bichui GaIn, is being sold there. The salespeople told me that Zain has longan fruit and panax ginseng extracts unlike Bichui GaIn which has different plant extracts (it’s supposedly a compound of 7 flower extracts, along with a plant called cheon-sang-cho, which is mainly in Korea).

    Hope that you get a great haul either way.

  95. hopein
    January 27, 2011 at 6:34 am (6 years ago)

    the only thing i have from Koreana is their BB Creams! haha. Would like to try their Biodefense line for oily skin but it seems the line was discontinued like the Whoo’s Chung line for oily skin! haha

    OMG joseibi , u have got to try the SUm37 Secret Programming Eye cream. it is amazinggggggggg!!! i love sulwhasoo’s extra refining eye cream but this LOVE for sum37’s is another whole new level !!!

    I found this really awesome deal for the Sooryehan ET-looking range :

    • Joseibi
      January 31, 2011 at 12:41 pm (6 years ago)

      Not yet, hope, but I am currently starting Su:m37 White Award and I already love it so I probably will get the secret programming eye cream!! 🙂

  96. Kev Jang
    January 27, 2011 at 8:30 am (6 years ago)


    The weblink you pointed us to is actually for the samples of Sunyu Soo under Sooryehan. It has been around as a range for some time.
    The latest range under Sooryehan Soo actually has sanghwang mushroom(tawny mulberry mushroom) as one of its extracts inside the formulation. It’s more expensive too.

  97. Kev Jang
    January 27, 2011 at 10:28 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Hope,
    The lady at su: m in Lotte Department Store Myeongdong did tell me that Face Lining was a line of products targetted at deep wrinkles lol. I doubt that it is meant for younger skins or even people in 30’s.

    Sunyu seems to be a luxury line. I might be wrong here. But you don’t see a lot of them carried around except in Beautiplexes compared to other Sooryehan products in Korea.

  98. hopein
    January 27, 2011 at 10:09 am (6 years ago)

    thanks kev! what is the sunyu soo range for?

    do u have any idea what the Sum37 face lining treatment for?

  99. Kev Jang
    January 28, 2011 at 10:53 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope,

    This is just my opinion, and I am only giving my 2 cents’ worth. In all Korean cosmetic stores (I mean the real retail stores instead of online retail), samples are reserved exclusively for giving out as free gifts for people who purchase products, or people who have an interest in knowing more about the product.

    Samples might be priced and valued, but that practice is only practised by some Gmarket sellers who are doing something different from other retail stores. You have to be aware that your contacting of people from Bergsdorf (did I spell that correctly?) does not necessarily reflect the sales or customer service practice of any South Korean or Korean American per se who works in a cosmetic store. I think you should ask those who are involved in the sales business instead of someone outside of it because it might not be accurate as a remark. To begin with, those retailers do not appear to be actually South Koreans, are they? I don’t exactly get the point of conflict.

    Maybe you can ask Joseibi and the rest what they think, since they have more knowledge of the retail business in cosmetics.

  100. Kev Jang
    January 28, 2011 at 10:59 am (6 years ago)

    I am going to sound somewhat biased, but actually, the practice of selling samples is not often respected in real retail in cosmetics in South Korea honestly. No retail stores in South Korea or Koreatowns in the USA or Canada (which I have visited) that I know of actually sells samples, although these samples are priced. In most cases, it might be that the sales of samples is placed at a lower rank of business integrity than the real sales of the products in their proper sizes. But of course, distributors reserve the right to decide whether they want to sell the samples online for people who are interested in the products but do not know if they are good for them. Note, there is a difference between online sales practice and retail practice. But you have to distinguish between these two. And also, don’t quote me on this! I would appreciate it because I do not want to be quoted as an authority. Thanks. It could get me into trouble.

  101. hopein
    January 28, 2011 at 11:17 am (6 years ago)

    so sites such as etc are selling it illegally? Why doesnt Amore or LG does anything about it if they have problems with it? Or do they sell these samples too?

  102. Kev Jang
    January 28, 2011 at 11:30 am (6 years ago)

    I am not talking about illegal sales. I do not know the laws about cosmetics sales (you have to ask someone who knows the laws, not me). But I do not think any self-respecting ‘hwa jang poom ga gye” (cosmetics store) will sell samples as their mainstay. You might probably be doing something which is not a Korean norm to sell samples and make it the mainstay of your business. Again, I am not the best person to advise you on this. But you honestly would be better suited to selling real-size products as your mainstay if your business is in cosmetics. To begin with, I never heard of a business selling samples only.

  103. Kev Jang
    January 28, 2011 at 11:35 am (6 years ago)

    I think as long as you have distributor rights or an agreement as a dealer or retailer, you can basically sell any product. Other than that, anything else is really informal and not etched in law, so well, that has to be checked with someone else informed on the legal end. But well, check with others more aware of the situation. Joseibi probably has something to say about this more than me as a former retailer online.

  104. hopein
    January 28, 2011 at 11:38 am (6 years ago)

    Nah, our blog isn’t dabbling in the business section of it too. It is just that the representative kind of shot us down when all we did was to try promote the brand. We only write, promote, review and update.

    I do know some Gmarket sellers purchase these sample travel starters kit in bulk, then they sell the samples separately and also in a set – which is how a lot of samples come from. Yes, they are not selling it in a kit which is suppose to be sold, but they paid Amore for the kits – and for the representative to be saying that these sellers are selling it illegally is kinnda ….

    and if amore doesn’t give these sellers samples – there is no way these sellers can be selling massive stocks of these samples.

  105. Kev Jang
    January 28, 2011 at 11:45 am (6 years ago)

    He probably meant the distributor rights and assumed that you were trying to sell something. If you are just trying to review products, you probably would not need to technically buy samples in bulk since those are mostly bought by people (authorized dealers) trying to make business off them as samples to give along with their sales. For once, I had the idea that you were trying to sell stuff too from the sound of it.

  106. hopein
    January 28, 2011 at 12:19 pm (6 years ago)

    no, we don’t sell anything from our blog, we just provide readers the links where they can try these products.

    we buy them in bulk because there are a number of us here, so each of us only practically get one sample each and sometimes there isnt even enough to be equally shared!

    our blog doesn’t get any income from ANYONE – those stuff that we give out every 2-3 weeks are paid by us with our own pocket money and readers don’t even pay for shipping!

    • Joseibi
      January 31, 2011 at 12:37 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear hope and Kev,

      I posted a comment on hope’s blog – I completely understand selling the samples (the samples themselves had ‘Not For Sale’ printed on them) – but I think the Bergdorf Goodman rep chastised hope for promoting buying samples. Any company can come after you for not having authorized dealership to sell their products (heck, DHC came after me even though I was an authorized dealer…I digressed), but these days, it’s hard to crackdown because of all these ebay sellers. They really aren’t supposed to sell the samples, I completely understand that, but I think what the rep accused hope of was a little too much. I think she should have gone after those who are actually selling the samples.

      I am conflicted by this too. I have recommended people try the samples first because these products are pricey. Most of the people who read my blog have gone onto purchasing full size versions – Tuyet, Smiles, Kman and myself, just to name a few, Lala too, so the samples are not having the adverse effect that the company or this rep from BG were afraid of. Actually, we liked the products enough to buy the full size. That said, the samples weren’t supposed to be sold either, so it’s a real dilemma for us, esp. when some people don’t have access to these stores in person and ebay could be the only place they can get samples to try. It’s a tough call. If anything the companies should restrict samples from being sold, because I think that is the root of the problem.

  107. Lee
    January 28, 2011 at 5:03 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Hopein – thank you for the product recommendation.

    Hi Kev.Jang – thank you for the link. It’s good to know someone else who knows a lot about skincare and is combination skin! Oh, I live in Chicago. I like living here as it combines the best of small town charm and big city convenience. What makes winters here brutal are the strong winds that come off of Lake Michigan. In fact, there are days we have wind storms, haha.

    Thank you for the recommendation on sunscreens. Gmarket seems to sell everything! I actually saw Sooryehan’s Cheongyun line and was wondering about it. I think it definitely would be better suited to my skin because its light texture.

    I was in Seoul a year ago and passed by Incheon airport without knowing they had a Coreana section! I wish I had filled my suitcase with all the products you mentioned! I didn’t know much about asian skincare then so I didn’t take advantage of all the stores there. I recall seeing so many skincare stores and wondering how good they were. There are so many in Myeongdong and COEX. To think I was at the Lotte department store and didn’t buy any Whoo products!

    Thanks for your well wishes. I’m already planning to go to some department stores in Tokyo and getting Albion, Sofina, FANCL, Haba and whatever else catches my attention, haha.

    Oh, and I read your comment about how some Korean corporations don’t respond to e-mails. I went to Albion’s English site and submitted a question about where to purchase their products in Tokyo. They responded the next day with a list and offered more help if I could tell them where exactly I would be. Nice customer service!

    One more thing, do you use facial masks? If you do can you recommend some?

  108. hopein
    January 28, 2011 at 5:09 pm (6 years ago)

    Lee = The Suiskin dual masks were really good for us – we really did see a huge improvement on our skin texture, pore size etc. It is a 5 week treatment peeling mask and each treatment contains 2 masks.

    I’ve just ordered the new Whoo Gongjinghyang masks, and will see how that goes. and Joseibi and us loves the SKII masks too.

  109. Kev Jang
    January 29, 2011 at 12:33 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee,

    Do you mean sheet masks or facial masks which you apply onto the face as a kind of cream or pack before washing off after a while? If you mean the latter, I cannot really say that there are a lot of good ones out there. There are some which I like the texture of, and find that they help in alleviating dry/dehydrated skin, or when winter hits. Danahan’s Boyun Pack (sells for 20,000 won in retail stores and probably cheaper) comes in the form of a cream-based mask which has some elements of bean extracts, leaves a sheen on the skin and when washed off, feels clean and soft on skin. Sooryehan has a Red Ginseng peel-off pack which I like and have been using for a long while. I find that the pores look smaller every time after I use it, but it might be a short term effect. It’s a best seller though in Korea.

    I imagine that there is Skinfood in Chicago as I heard? So you might want to consider the new range of masks they have brought in. They supposedly have an Olive mask, which contains real olive oil, and again, it leaves a sheen on your skin at first. You scrub the skin with that once a week and it washes off easily. Either way, you probably do a mask once or twice a week at most so getting a good mask for skincare is optional, but it might actually be good as a boost. Also, if you mean Whoo masks, Whoo has the Nok Yong pack. It’s their bestseller too.

  110. Kev Jang
    January 29, 2011 at 2:24 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee, I remember you asked about sunscreens. Since you are in wintry Chicago, right now, you probably do not intend to make sunscreens the staple of any skincare per se. But since suncare is supposed to be part of every skincare routine, perhaps you can check out Charmzone Albatross Powder Sun SPF 41/PA++. I got a sample once last year from a friend, and it felt quite matte. Absorbs quickly and did not feel greasy at all.

  111. MILK*
    January 29, 2011 at 7:55 am (6 years ago)

    May I ask how you use this product? Do you use it after a toner or does this product completely replace a toner? I tried a trial size of the SKII FTE before and the texture was so light that I had to use quite a lot of it for each application and I finished it rather quickly. Since this is not a cheap product I want to know how you use it and approximately how long one bottle (80ml) will last me.


  112. Kev Jang
    January 31, 2011 at 11:40 am (6 years ago)

    Hi Milk*
    I found out for you the order of use. You use this after the toner of your choice in the range, before the emulsion. It does not replace the toner, and is a separate item. Think of it as a booster to the toner.

  113. Kman
    January 31, 2011 at 6:19 pm (6 years ago)

    Dont forget tell how you like white award? How is THE secret programming essence for so far?

    • Joseibi
      February 1, 2011 at 11:15 am (6 years ago)

      So far so good, kman! There are pros and cons about it compared to SKII FTE, which I will note in my detailed review.

      I am using the White Award line, very nice as well, more hydrating than Whoo’s Seol line, much like what Smiles had said before, but she and I have drier skin and that’s one of the things about su:m37, probably better for dry or dehydrated skin than oily/combo skin.

  114. epiphany
    January 31, 2011 at 7:00 pm (6 years ago)

    This is a tad off-topic, but regarding your really dry/dehydrated skin; one thing I have found to really help is a Ceramide supplement. The place I get all my supplements from sends magazines monthly with articles on clinical studies done on various things. The study on taking ceramides orally was really quite eye-opening. Here is a little excerpt:

    “Ceramides have been available to Japanese women as a functional food since 2000.7 The hydrating action of Lipowheatâ„¢ ceramides have proven highly effective in clinical trials. To take one example, after just three months use of Lipowheatâ„¢, a group of people suffering from dry, flaking skin reported dramatic improvement in the look and feel of their skin. These results were verified by electrochemical analysis showing that 95% of participants exhibited improved skin hydration. Even better, all subjects who experienced chronic itching at the onset of the study reported sharply decreased itching or complete elimination of the problem by the study’s conclusion!”

    Although it takes about 3months to notice the full effect since it has to work its way up internally to the top layer of your skin, I have already noticed a dramatic difference in the 1 month I have been using it. I have really noticed it so far in the skin around my eyes. Typically before after I washed my face, if I didn’t moisturize fairly quickly I would notice it right away. The skin would feel tight and uncomfortable; however, now I have found myself almost forgetting to put on my eyecream because the skin already feels hydrated.
    If you google you can find many brands, but the one I am using is from Life Extension (I really love their products). I plan to continue to use this indefinitely and I can’t wait to see what the results will be in 2 more months 🙂 If you do happen to try it out, I’d love to see if it helps you as well.

    • Joseibi
      February 1, 2011 at 11:22 am (6 years ago)

      Thanks, epiphany. I used to drink the collagen drinks from Fancl and Menard respectively (and they aren’t cheap), for months and months at a time but didn’t see any visible results…many people swear by them and those drinks are very popular, but somehow they don’t work for me.

      My dehydration is environment-based. When I was in Florida, with the exact same products I am using, my skin was moist, unlined and plump. I live in Toronto, it’s -19 with windchill today, and that’s the average temperature in winter. with the indoor heat and even with central humidity (you can’t crank it up too high in the house or you get major condensation on walls, windows, etc. because the outside temperature is too low compared to your indoor temperature) my skin just gets horribly dry in the winter. I have pretty much accepted it – Canadian winters aren’t skin friendly so I just had to load up my moisturizers everyday just to survive! 🙂

  115. Kev Jang
    January 31, 2011 at 10:47 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Joseibi,

    You put it very nicely, coming from someone who used to be in the business of selling cosmetics online! I think that the problem with these cosmetics companies wanting to “clamp down” on ebay sellers is that ebay is simply an informal avenue for people to sell stuff. Often a lot of the sellers need not be real authorized dealers to sell something there, and it could be just anybody off the streets so to say.

    ah, your remarks about su: m 37 White Award piqued my curiosity about the products. I still have not tried the Skin Resetting line which I bought (skin, lotion, cream), as well as the samples they gave me as gifts (yes, the wonderful thing about samples in South Korean stores is that they give you lots and lots of them, and some can actually last you for weeks and even months) which were in real gift boxes. Generally, do you find that the Secret Programming Essence is a good booster to your current skincare routine?

    • Joseibi
      February 1, 2011 at 11:56 am (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev.,

      I love buying in person for that reason too, the Korean sales people are super generous! I still have tonnes of samples I haven’t opened yet. Most of them are in miniature jars and deluxe size too! Makes me giddy everytime I shop! 🙂

      I find that su:m37 White Award moisturizes better than Whoo’s Seol line. I wake up to glowing skin – whereas Seol products left my skin very matte. I remember Smiles, the poster who introduced us to su:m37, said the same thing. I haven’t used White Award long enough to compare against Seol for whitening effects yet, but so far, I really like it! It’s hydrating enough for my dry skin, at least for my age and this part of the world.

      As for Secret Programming Essence, it is a good booster, but I think it’s not as universally applicable to all skin types as SKII’s FTE – my skin loves the SPE, but for oilier skin, probably too sticky. For mine it’s good though! so far, I am loving it, though SKII’s FTE is still my fav. 🙂

  116. Kev Jang
    February 1, 2011 at 12:53 pm (6 years ago)

    This is the awesome thing about buying skincare moisturizers and other products at a Korean store. Their service is really very good and they make an effort to give you samples so that you can try out the products and know for yourself whether they really work or not. I liked shopping at Aritaum and Beautiplex all the time when in Seoul. Like what you said, Joseibi, by their giving us samples, we do eventually want to get the real products ourselves because we realize that the products are really quite good. I find that this is a better practice compared to what happens when people just simply do not give samples, and plus, try really hard to do that aggressive hard-selling and sometimes even shadowing and badgering the customer to buy something else, when he or she has already bought something, even if that additional item is something he or she won’t end up using! In fact, I was kind of surprised at what hope was saying once about selling samples at a store, because I assumed that it was not common but I saw it a few years back in 2009 in a Korean cosmetics store in Singapore, and they were selling samples at $2 each sample!!! (I digress here, but well….that’s for another separate story….)….

    Yes, environment seems to play a role in dehydration. A good friend of mine developed dryness of skin when she moved to Vancouver in her teens. Supposedly, as she told me, even stuff like Cetaphil does not seem to help despite dermatologists’ advice and recommendation. She told me that loading up on good moisturizers really help a lot in this case.

    The real good thing about all these samples, even if you don’t use them immediately, is that you can bring them along when you travel, and they can be disposed of easily. This makes them so much more amenable for packing. Once you finish using one small vial of 5ml or so, you throw it away, and then open another vial. It’s that simple and plus, I think that it is a good way to expend such stuff. Sometimes, I give them away to friends and family as a haul and ask them for opinions on what they think of the products after using. 🙂

    • Joseibi
      February 1, 2011 at 5:14 pm (6 years ago)

      I totally agree, Kev! I love those samples for so many reasons!! I prefer trying the sample versus someone hard selling me something. 🙂

  117. Lee
    February 1, 2011 at 1:22 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi Hope – You are always so helpful, thanks for recommending Suiskin. I checked your blog and found that you really like their products. I’ll try to find the dual masks but so far I haven’t seen them on

    Let me know how the Whoo Gongjinghyang masks work out. I hear so many good things about Whoo! I haven’t tried the SKII masks but I’ve read good things about them on this blog.

    Hi Kev Jang – When I was asking about face masks, I meant sheet masks. Sorry for the confusion. I’ve never heard of Danahan but the Boyun Pack sounds good for use in winter. Currently, I’m using the Laneige Water Sleeping Pack once a week to try and get some extra moisture. The wind in Chicago is harsh on my skin!

    I actually went to H-Mart over the weekend which is a big Korean supermarket. They have an Amore, LG/Chramzone and The Face Shop store inside. I remembered some of the recommendations you and hope made and found some of them. I was actually interested in the Red Ginseng peel-off pack and found it there. I bought it and I love it! I feel like it does shrink my pores and leaves my skin soft. I can’t wait to see what it does after using it for a month. The SA was also nice and gave me some Sooryehan Younha and Charmzone samples.

    I also went to Amore and the SA there is so nice. She always gives me samples even if I don’t buy anything. This time she asked me to try Sulhwasoo again since my skin may like it better in the winter time and gave me some different samples from that line.

    Unfortunately, I didn’t find the enzyme powder wash that hope had recommended at The Face Shop. Instead, I bought a delicious smelling Avocado body butter crème, haha.

    I am interested in Skinfood but haven’t seen a shop in Chicago. It may be in another part of Korea town though. The areas I’ve been to are mostly Amore dominated. The Olive mask does sound interesting since I also like olive based DHC products. I read your other comments on Whoo’s Nok Yong pack but I think it might be too rich for my skin if it leaves Joseibi’s skin feeling sticky.

    Even though it’s winter I still put sunscreen on (it’s become a habit, haha). I tried looking for Charmzone’s Albatross Powder Sun SPF 41/PA++ but didn’t find it at the store. I think they might have put it away since its winter or don’t carry it.

    This post keeps getting longer but I haven’t been able to check in for a while, haha. I saw Joseibi’s pic and she has such good skin at 35! Having good skin really does make a difference. I can tell from your posts that you take good care of your skin so I imagine you, like Joseibi, look younger than your actual age! The actor I admire for having good skin is Song Joong Ki. I know there are usually lots of comments from netizens about his skin. Is he famous in Singapore? I know he promotes Tony Moly products but I don’t know if they are any good.

    Last thing, I bought a Japanese men’s magazine called Popeye and there was a section inside about places to visit in Seoul. There were some spa and skincare product recommendations. I don’t want to flood the blog here with those products so is there a way to contact you?

  118. hopein
    February 1, 2011 at 2:43 pm (6 years ago)

    Lee – the enzyme powder face wash i was talking about is from Suiskin ! Coreana also has their own.

    Have a question regarding the White Award and Brightune. What is the difference? Why isn’t bright tune on the sum37 website?

    I purchase a White Award cream on Gmarket, and the seller sent me the Brighttune. I emailed Gmarket and the seller responded that they are actually both the same thing?

  119. kman
    February 1, 2011 at 4:40 pm (6 years ago)

    hii hope,

    The white award line is a little more moisturizing than the bright tune line. Other than that, it is basically the same. If we can be of any further assistant, don’t hesitate to ask.
    Best Regards,
    Royal Beauty Cosmetics

    this is what they say


  120. kman
    February 1, 2011 at 4:46 pm (6 years ago)


    do you think korean skincare is also good for western skin? or is it just made for our asian skin?

    • Joseibi
      February 4, 2011 at 11:26 am (6 years ago)

      It’s hard to say because these things can’t be proven, but I personally prefer Korean and Japanese skincare because they absorb better and have better ingredients than a lot of the Western ones. They work better for my skin – esp. hydration wise. A lot of the western products seem to only sit on the surface (epidermis) of the skin and not go very deep.

      My husband is white and he uses Sulwhasoo and thinks it’s the greatest thing! 😛

  121. kman
    February 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm (6 years ago)

    hi joseibi,

    what is the difference between fermented technology and nano technology?
    why they said there is a sence of fermented aroma put in it?

    still dont understand

  122. Kev Jang
    February 1, 2011 at 10:44 pm (6 years ago)

    Hey Lee,

    You can contact me at kevin.t.cho[at] (*edited by admin to protect you from spam). Yes, it is a strange thing with putting sunblocks away during winter, but I notice that drug stores in canada do that too haha….I mean, don’t we all need it even when we travel elsewhere during winter to a sunnier place??? That’s so weird haha….

    Hannule has a sheet mask, although I think you have to get it online via Gmarket…..more navigating to do! I find that the thing about sheet masks is that they really do not stick onto the skin well. A friend gave me Ossion Aqua Time Masks by Hankook Cosmetics (I know what people will think…that tire company, but no, there is also strangely a cosmetics and skincare company known for its nanotechnology in producing ginseng-based cosmetics, the brand Sansim, called Hankook Cosmetics) and I found that it clung onto the skin pretty well. The only catch was that I had to put it on for a really long time for the whole sheet mask’s essence to be absorbed. The essence is really gel-ly, and takes a longer while to get into the skin and vanish(unlike the 10 minutes recommended in the directions….). Joseibi’s review of Su: m37 mask sheets is reminding me of Ossion Aqua Time masks lol……I am not exactly a big user of mask sheets for the reason they take some effort to put onto the skin and some might not adhere well, but my sisters love them. They both swear by Etude House’s Moistfull Collagen mask sheets which I have to get for them whenever I am in Seoul!

    I think Sung Joong Ki is only emerging as a new actor in Asia of the hallyu. Kim Hyun Joong of The Face Shop and Lee Minho of Etude House (both mass market brands) are actually more popular.

  123. Kev Jang
    February 1, 2011 at 10:45 pm (6 years ago)

    @Kman I do think that Korean brands can be used even on western skin, and even African American skins. The last time I got something made by Hanskin, a night cream called Magic Night BB cream, for an African American friend (a girl in her 30s), she absolutely loved the product and told me that she found it moisturized the skin without leaving any greasy film. Korean BB creams though might not suit Asians of a darker skin tone such as South Indians, or African Americans whose skin tone tend towards dark cocoa tone.

    Nanotechnology and fermentation technology are 2 different things. Nanotechnology is used in most circles of science now, including pharmaceuticals, and even military and defence science. It is the belief that when you compress the molecule of a substance into smaller particles, that molecule enters more effectively and is able to achieve what it is meant to do. Hence, things like nano-tech produced cosmetics are often cosmetics which compress the molecules of the active ingredients such as the plant extracts for greater penetration into the skin.

    Biofermentation on the other hand though is similar to something like extracting the juice out of something fermented, like say, kimchi. Kimchi was actually surprisingly the first test case in Korea of fermented cosmetics! This is because the extract juice of kimchi which comes out everytime when kimchi is left to ferment is rich in lactic acid (this exfoliates dead skin cells), has rich probiotic cultures and hence is anti-microbial/anti-bacterial in a good way, and also rich in antioxidants. I cannot imagine any cosmetics actually using kimchi juice as an extract though! That would be really weird on my skin.

    Ah, it’s the eve of Lunar New Year here in Asia (celebrated by most East Asians including Koreans, Chinese and Vietnamese). Happy New Year to all!

    • Joseibi
      February 4, 2011 at 11:27 am (6 years ago)

      Thanks, Kev!!!!!!! You are a GREAT source of info on all things skincare! Happy New Year to you too!

  124. kman
    February 2, 2011 at 1:16 pm (6 years ago)

    Happy new year!!

    Thanks kev. For helping me with this information, actually i wonder if someone from indonesie
    She has a quite dark chocolate skin with dark spots, and she has some acne scars,do you think the whoo seol will helped her skin?
    Ok so its not possible my skin dont like fermented products? If skin react its more from a ingrredient then of the technologie the product is made??


  125. Lee
    February 2, 2011 at 9:03 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi hope – thanks for clearing it up. I think i had so many brands in mind that i got mixed up. That explains why the SA didn’t know what I was talking about, haha.

    Hi Kev – thanks for your contact information!

    Sheet masks actually work well on my skin. I’ve tried a few brands so far like My Beauty Diary (I think there is too much fragrance!), JuJu Cosmetics Aquamoist HA face mask (it leaves my face soft but a little too moisturized, better for drier skin), Neutrogena Fine Fairness (thick cloth but the essence kind of tingles the skin at first). Currently, I like the one I am using which is SANA’s Isofrabon soy milk face mask. It doesn’t have any fragrance and is a nice balance of moisture.

    I really did think of tires when you mentioned that Ossion Aqua Time Masks were made by Hankook (that’s what they are most famous for in the united states)! Thanks for your review. I think I’ll skip them but I might try the Etude House Moistfull Collagen ones. There were Etude House’s in so many places I went to in Seoul.

    Ah, I see Sung Joong Ki is an up and coming actor. I found out about him when I watched Sungkyunkwan Scandal. I thought his skin looked really nice in the drama and then found out from articles that other people noticed the same thing!

    I don’t know much about the lunar new year except that red envelopes make kids happy 🙂 Enjoy!!

  126. Lee
    February 2, 2011 at 9:05 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi, it’s Lee. I submitted the above post but forgot to write my name. Sorry!

    • Joseibi
      February 4, 2011 at 12:36 pm (6 years ago)

      Hi Lee,

      I just edited so your name appears on your last comment now! 🙂

  127. Kev Jang
    February 4, 2011 at 1:23 pm (6 years ago)

    Honestly, it’s quite true that a lot of these things about Korean and Japanese skincare brands being effective for all skin types, even non-Asian skin, are not proven medically. However, human skin is structurally the same regardless of skin color for the most part, and it might explain why most Korean brands and Japanese brands can be used on Caucasian or African skin as well as Asian skin. There is also very little research on the effectiveness of a lot of Asian herbs too in western science, such as the effectiveness of deer antlers, ginseng, and angelica sinensis etcetera, not only because of the lack of ready availability of these Asian herbs in the western world, and also the rareness of western medical information on them, but they have been used for centuries since ancient China, Japan and Korea were powerful kingdoms in Asia in medical practice. It might also account for the different methods in western and eastern science practices in medical practice and cosmetics production too.

    • Joseibi
      February 4, 2011 at 3:29 pm (6 years ago)

      I used to have this customer, a chemist, who told me that the emulsification process used in Korean and Japanese skincare is so much more advanced, it doesn’t only absorb better, it also preserves the integrity of the products better. I had this happened to me with western products (different brands!) – a lotion starts to separate itself, part water, part oil, after just a couple of months. When you open the cap the water comes out and the emulsion still sits inside the tube. It’s so weird but it happens a lot. It never happened with any of my Korean or Japanese skincare, honest!

      I agree with what you said regarding the herbs too. There is synergy which many of those label-reading critics fail to understand (it was one of those major counter arguments against Paula Begoun at the time). I don’t know if the west had ever invested in studying the synergy of the herbs or even most of the herbs themselves – they can categorically badmouth the effectiveness of the products based on the little they know about the oriental herbs, but many people (and we aren’t stupid) do see visible results with these products so ultimately, I believe in what I see and I see results with what I use! 🙂

  128. Kev Jang
    February 4, 2011 at 1:33 pm (6 years ago)

    I think I can add a good African-American friend of mine to the list of people from non-Asian ethnic backgrounds who actually think Korean skincare and fashion are awesome. She used to tell me how she adores their dress sense in their movies, and she gave me rave reviews of the Korean skincare I gave her, Hanskin included!

  129. kman
    February 4, 2011 at 6:29 pm (6 years ago)

    hee joseibi,

    just visit the blog! wonderfull, another satisfied whoo user, this is really a proof that the whoo is really works for almost everybody!!

    when will you give a full review of your sum37 white award??? can not waitxxxxkman

    • Joseibi
      February 4, 2011 at 9:37 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear kman,

      I will review white award in a couple of weeks, but so far, the biggest difference between whoo’s seol and sum37 white award is the moisture, sum37 is much more hydrating. white award is better at brightening the skin tone (great if you have dull skin esp from dehydration or dryness), while seol, less hydrating, is better at whitening, meaning the freckles and overall shade of the skin. That’s the difference I feel so far, but I haven’t used sum37 white award as long as Seol yet so I need to invest a little more time on the line to see how it compares. so far, my skin is loving it! <3

  130. Kev Jang
    February 5, 2011 at 12:46 am (6 years ago)

    Yes, Joseibi, although I guess that Paula Begoun starts out with some good intentions in her books on skincare, a large part of her information is based on bias too. She seems to actually tilt the knowledge against the whole Asian cosmetics market (she does not deal with any Korean products, and all the Japanese products she covers are BADLY criticized to the point that you feel like you are discouraged from buying). Begoun is not a chemist per se, and so in many ways, her reviews are based largely on a very cursory glance at ingredients followed by critiques of the Ph value. She forgets to mention that natural fragrances are largely harmless to people unlike artificial fragrances, because these natural fragrances are mainly byproducts of the adding of various herbs together. Not to mention, I still cannot get over why she seems so antagonistic to using herbs and plant extracts in cosmetics and even claims that mineral oil and petrolatum are about as good, which is only partially true.

    An American friend saw my pics a few years ago and noted in fact that my skin was very good for a guy, and I simply said, “In short, use Korean face care products!” It was amusing to him somewhat, but actually, I do agree with you that emulsification processes for Korean cosmetics are very different from that of Western products. I cannot get over the fact that when I use a lot of western brand facial cleansers, even if these are purportedly gentle, my skin still feels taut and dry, while using Korean cleansers might not always do that. The separation of ingredients in Korean skincare products is also somewhat different in that I think I can still see the integrity of the ingredients one year from opening (although I rarely do that thing!), and they keep longer without any bad smell. Fragrance is just fragrance added in, and honestly, if anything separates, you can still smell something going bad no matter what. A lot of western brands seem to actually require you to start using consistently for a few months(2 to 3 or so), and about 6 months or so after using, you might actually need to throw them away.

    • Joseibi
      February 7, 2011 at 12:37 am (6 years ago)

      I completely agree with you, Kev! Paula Begoun served her purpose by getting people to read the list of ingredients, but she is no chemist or dermatologist. The fact that she also has her own line of skincare while bashing all the other big brands makes her a lot less credible. I remember some of the big cosmetic companies responded to her back then, the comments were not complimentary.

      The long list of ingredients in korean products – my skin is sensitive, but I almost never reacted to most of the Korean products I have tried! Also, regarding nanotech, most of the Japanese products I used weren’t nanosized either but they manage to stay well. Most liquids and creams have a limited shelf life of 6 months or less once you open them, which is a reasonable amount of time, but the western products go bad way before then. I had a Clarins cream in a tube that started to go watery on me after just 2 months! That never happened with my J- or K-brands. The Korean and Japanese are so much more advanced with their skin care (and among many other things), the western stuff has a lot to catch up on. Just look at all the copycats in the west – Japan had those ionic blowdryers years before T3 surfaced here. same with Clarsonic – Panasonic and National had those gadgets long ago too! Everything from Japan is being copied here as if they were original here. but, again, I digressed! 🙂

      There is no doubt that Korean skincare is superb, my skin never got this good until I was introduced to Korean products! 🙂

  131. Kev Jang
    February 5, 2011 at 1:05 am (6 years ago)

    One other issue of difference in terms of being a label-reading critic in terms of the Western and Asian skincare approaches is that in most western skincare brands, dermatologists would advise you to make sure that the list of ingredients are relatively short(so as to ensure that the chemicals, binders, fillers and preservatives etcetera) inside the product are as few as possible. In the case of Asian brands, such as Korean brands, there is conversely a strong emphasis on the ingredients list where they boast a really LONG list of natural ingredients. In fact, among most of the stuff that my family and I use for the Korean brands, I cannot recall a brand where the ingredients list does not really take up at least half of the back of the product. What happens when the product’s ingredients list is really short is simply that the product is a very very minimalist one with some chemical binders, fillers and one or two plant extracts which might be really cheap in a whole pack of 3 or 4 (like 20 something thousand won or so), but I think these Korean products are more the exception than the norm and the bestselling products among various brands in fact boast a long list.

  132. hopein
    February 5, 2011 at 11:16 am (6 years ago)

    haha seeing the sum37 essence ingredient list makes u spin already!

    i havent been happy with the hannule/whoo cleansers. they give the skin such a squeaky skin feeling.

    anyone having the same experience?

  133. hopein
    February 5, 2011 at 1:54 pm (6 years ago)

    also has anyone here tried OHUI? i was given so much samples from every seller ( it seems that they give out HERA and OHUI samples like crazY cos everytime i get truckloads of HERA and OHUI samples) and i tried the hydra moist line which i loved and also i tried the The First and Age Recovery which was very nice too.

    • Joseibi
      February 7, 2011 at 12:24 pm (6 years ago)

      I got a few miniature jars of OHUI The First and Age Recover creams too! Haven’t gotten around to trying them yet, but I plan to.

  134. Versace
    February 5, 2011 at 2:01 pm (6 years ago)

    Hello Joseibi, I am happy to have dropped by your blog. I am also using Sum37 products and loving them. It is great for my dehydrated skin too, best skin saver and all natural thank God!

    I have tried The History of Whoo, and I love this brand as well, especially the Jinyulgo line, which is very moisturizing. A comment to Western medicine, they could care less about herbal medicine… seriously its ridiculous. Sometimes I feel we are so behind in everything, it is really sad actually. Being to Europe and Asia, I learned that they are progressing and advancing more than us! Gosh, I would just go and live in Europe or Korea haha

    But anywho, to hopein, I tried Whoo’s cleansers before, all three foams not the cream ones, and it left my skin very moist, I only got a squeaky feeling from the whitening cleanser. Some people don’t like squeaky clean feelings haha… the jinyul foam leaves a squeaky feel, but the gonjinhyang one is very hydrating. I like the feeling though because it felt like my skin was very clean and all my products absorbed better. You should have the cream cleansers a go, I heard they are great for dry skin.

    I love your blog, and I saw your pictures, you are GORGEOUS!


    • Joseibi
      February 7, 2011 at 12:28 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Versace,

      Isn’t it great to use great skincare products without smelling like you put half a bottle of cologne on yourself?! 🙂 I love su:m37 for that too!

      And thank you for your kind words! You made my day! 😀

  135. hopein
    February 5, 2011 at 6:52 pm (6 years ago)

    yeah, i don’t like that squeaky feeling and so far the jinyul and the gongjinhyang line gave me that feeling. even the hanyul foam cleanser gave that squeaky feeling!

  136. Kev Jang
    February 6, 2011 at 12:48 am (6 years ago)

    Hopein, it might also be because your skin is combination or dry skin(since it is a bunch of individuals reviewing the products on your end, you probably have an assortment of different skin types among yourself). A lot of different skin types react to the same cleanser (even if it is meant for all skin types) differently. Hence the need to review them according to their effects.

    Hera and O’hui are not mass market or medium-end brands in Korea. You pay a lot in the department stores for them, and that is also why they have duty-free sections for these brands in Lotte and the airports in Korea. For students like you, I think that these brands are likely to break your wallet since the whole set of cleanser, toner, essence, emulsion, cream and eye cream, and sunblock costs a lot. The sellers on ebay or gmarket gave them to you as samples probably in hoping that you would try and eventually want to buy the full size products.

  137. Kev Jang
    February 8, 2011 at 11:53 am (6 years ago)

    Talking about fragrance, Joseibi, I think I have something more substantial to say about the samples of the Dear Homme line of Su: m 37 which I was given by the lady at the counter in Lotte, when I purchased the Skin Resetting set of 3, now that I tried one packet of each (the serum, the toner and the lotion).

    I generally turn red when I use most skincare lines made by Korean brands which have a heavy cologne smell, Laneige included, and for some reason, I noticed a smell that was actually rather like men’s fragrance inside the Dear Homme samples I used for a time. It did not cause any redness or stinging sensation for the most part to my sensitive skin, so it is probably safe to use (my skin is sensitive in most cases). The good thing was that the samples did not feel heavy on the skin. But for samples, I cannot say immediately whether they were actually going to deliver those one-use results (which I doubt any cosmetic or skincare product will anyway, to be honest on my own end, and to be realistic). There is definitely a scent inside the line, and it smells strangely and distinctively masculine in a sense, although it does not feel like the other male-based lines which are like cologne.

    • Joseibi
      February 14, 2011 at 1:06 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev,

      Is it possible the aroma is a natural fragrance oil blend or do you suspect it is an actual artificial fragrance? I wonder if they add the fragrance just for the men’s lines? What a shame if that’s the case ( I hope not), I am quite enjoying the scent free su:m37 products!

  138. hopein
    February 8, 2011 at 3:23 pm (6 years ago)

    Chinese medicine has nothing to prove! It’s on a class of it’s own in comparison to those active ingredients of the west.

    it’s been used and tested for centuries!

  139. hopein
    February 10, 2011 at 10:43 am (6 years ago)

    hi beauties,

    those of you who are eager to try the sum37 white award line, there is an extra good deal at gmarket

    the white award cream 30ml at only 14,000 won
    and the 50ml toner at 10,000 won

    they arent full size products but they arent samples too! they are the mini version, and they come in the original packaging but smaller 🙂

    enjoy girls!

  140. Kev Jang
    February 10, 2011 at 11:26 am (6 years ago)

    Hey Hopein,
    You asked about Super Vital Extra Moist Cream by IOPE. It is a new product of IOPE(Amorepacific) and retails at 160,000won for the full size. Continuing the previous research focus on plant stem cells within IOPE, this product is also another extension of the emphasis on the anti-aging purposes of plant stem cells. The pitching of IOPE is also towards the branding of itself as a cosmeceutical (merging the words “cosmetics” and “pharmaceutical”) brand.

  141. Kev Jang
    February 10, 2011 at 12:11 pm (6 years ago)

    Mini size creams are always very good ideas, as opposed to samples. The cream in 30ml will last around 2 months, which is a good chance for a person to know whether it works or not. That is where it triumphs over the use of samples, whatever the company’s claim of seeing an immediate result after the use of the sample.

  142. hopein
    February 10, 2011 at 5:11 pm (6 years ago)

    thanks kev!

    did u know that hannule has just released their whitening line? before they didnt have the emulsion and balancer. now the line is complete ! 😀 writing the article for the blog now

  143. Kev Jang
    February 10, 2011 at 11:18 pm (6 years ago)

    Yes, they have a new skin toner, emulsion and essence for Go Gyeol Mi Baek line in Hannule. The packaging has changed slightly for the cream too, and that also implies a change in pricing. I don’t ever use whitening products since my skin does not have pigmentation problems for now though, so the Chae Eum and Go Gyeol Jinaek lines are good enough for me!

  144. hopein
    February 11, 2011 at 3:44 pm (6 years ago)

    btw i convinced martha to try the secret programming essence. she bought it from wayne@kgoodshop!

  145. Kev Jang
    February 12, 2011 at 2:18 am (6 years ago)

    Looks like the Secret Programming Essence really works as an essence for skin renewal functions. Or else, you would not recommend to others to try. 🙂

  146. hopein
    February 12, 2011 at 12:23 pm (6 years ago)

    oops i forgot to add martha @

    it is going to be her first korean product and shes excited

  147. hopein
    February 12, 2011 at 12:25 pm (6 years ago)

    hey kev, one of us just started the sum37 372 line. but we dont have any idea what it’s for. according to the very short description – the 372 is for clear translucent skin.. but hmmm. doesnt give much information

  148. Kev Jang
    February 12, 2011 at 12:36 pm (6 years ago)

    I checked the website in Korean, and it appears that the 372 line is for vitality of skin, and hence, other than the moisturizing qualities it claims to have, it also supports the skin’s vitality. It’s the basic line in Su: m 37. The extract of chima mushroom is also one of the active plant extracts inside the cream. Were you using samples or the full size? I find it hard to see the full size for the 372 range unlike the rest. Also, what product in the line did you use?

  149. Kev Jang
    February 12, 2011 at 12:43 pm (6 years ago)

    What I mean is also that it prevents dullness of the skin, and also, is meant for normal to combination skin.

  150. hopein
    February 12, 2011 at 2:56 pm (6 years ago)

    we bought the full size items on gmarket !

    we bought the emulsion and lotion and eye cream.

    it’s true that it’s for normal to combi because the texture are all very light ! reminds me of the whoo chung yeo line

    dont like the eye cream at all though!

  151. Kev Jang
    February 13, 2011 at 12:34 am (6 years ago)

    You could probably use the cream, but it might be lighter than the others in the brand. But I would not recommend 1102 Extreme Time Control line for people in their 20’s. It’s generally recommended for mature skin, people in their 30’s and 40’s. It is also meant for anti-aging purposes, and hence the inclusion of a sleeping pack in the range which is creamy.

  152. Kev Jang
    February 13, 2011 at 12:57 am (6 years ago)

    As for the eye cream, always use it till it is finished, or else you might find it a waste. Su: m 37 is so expensive even on Gmarket, and I don’t think it is worth it if you just throw it away because you did not like the first time use of it. It might bring some surprises in effects, later on, as long as you do not have a sensitive skin reaction!

  153. hopein
    February 13, 2011 at 12:54 pm (6 years ago)

    yes we probably need the cream because just the toner and emulsion is light and not moisturizing enough for winter. at the moment she is using IOPE Extra Vital as the cream.

    what special stuff is in the 1102 line? it is just the 372 line but for older skin ?

  154. Kev Jang
    February 14, 2011 at 5:43 am (6 years ago)

    The 1102 line is the Extreme Time Control line. It’s heavier though as a whole, as far as I recall from that counter testing experience. The counter at Myeongdong was promoting Skin Resetting and that was what I got off the counter though. They have a sleeping pack from the 1102 line which is very creamy.

  155. Kev Jang
    February 14, 2011 at 11:26 pm (6 years ago)

    The strange thing is, it did not smell that much like some fragrance oil blend for the small 5ml bottles which I got as samples then. In the larger full size bottles which I tested and decided against buying then, the smell was the same and in fact perceivably masculine in some ways. I need to see the ingredients list to be able to make that judgement though.

    • Joseibi
      February 16, 2011 at 12:03 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev,

      I don’t know if this is proven to be true but one of the bloggers did tell me that the samples are weaker in concentration than the full size versions. Can anyone verify that? If it’s true then it can explain why you experienced this particular problem.

  156. Kev Jang
    February 15, 2011 at 4:20 am (6 years ago)

    The thing about a lot of LG brands for the men’s line is that they actually smell like some form of perfume even if the scent is not as heavy. For example, O’hui men’s skincare also smells like that too, which was a reason deterring me from getting it at the counters.

    • Joseibi
      February 16, 2011 at 12:11 pm (6 years ago)

      I agree, even Enprani’s Magic Vita Solution is very cologney! it’s a turn off. OHUI is quite heavily scented too. Some scents I can tolerate – I like Sulwhasoo’s scent or The History of Whoo’s Hwa Hyun scent, but some just give me a headache (e.g. Iope, Charmzone, etc.). I wish they were a little more subtle – some Japanese brands are scented but so mildly that I actually prefer the scented versions.

  157. kev jang
    February 16, 2011 at 12:49 pm (6 years ago)

    Yes, I do agree that the fragrance is one issue about Korean skincare. Enprani is not a bad brand. I think some of their products are highly hydrating such as their newly revamped Super Aqua 2X line which is a newly revamped version of their former Super Aqua line, or their Go Yoon (Oriental herbal skincare) line. But the one thing to get past is the fragrance, because they tend to actually have floral scents in the products which make one wonder if those are natural byproducts of the flowers they include as extracts or additional floral scents. Lg’s cosmetics are definitely heavily scented. Sooryehan, and Isa Knox are quite distinctively fragranced, and even Laneige too, although Laneige and other Amorepacific brands tend to be a little more subtle about that. I love the smell of Hannule and Sulwhasoo which smell like I am using Korean and Chinese herbs on my skin, and at least they are more ‘natural-smelling’. Compared to the men’s skincare lines, that’s better by leagues.

    • Joseibi
      February 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev,

      I remember talking to the Amore staff at the Amore Canada office regarding fragrance, they said that fragrance is associated with higher class so they tend to use fragrance in their products. I think times have changed though, with more people having allergies nowadays it is actually preferable not to have added fragrance! Amore fragrances I don’t mind (with the exception of IOPE…it always gives me a headache because the scent lingers on and has a major hang time!) but some of the brands, however good their products are, are just so pungent it’s hard to get past the smell.

      I have always loved Enprani – the quality is much better than say, Laneige, but unfortunately when I sold Enprani it was not performing too well, mostly because people know laneige, but they don’t know Enprani. Like you said, Amore and LG are the main brands that are internationally known, it’s unfortunate that the lesser known brands don’t have that recognition to have a following like Amore or LG. I used Super Aqua and some of the base makeup from Enprani when I was selling them, they were better than Laneige (I was in my 20s back then), but they almost always had to be on sale for people to buy them, which was discouraging. Even my Korean wholesaler told me Enprani is much better than Laneige, but it’s just not well known overseas! Too bad.

      I love that herbal smell from Sulwhasoo and even some of the History of Whoo lines. It reminds me of my childhood when my grandmother boiled the Chinese herbs, some were very bitter smelling but the Sulwhasoo scent is sweet so it’s a nice touch.

      I just tried Sooryehan’s Hyo fermented cream and it smelled like the bitter kind of oriental herb! It wasn’t a pleasant smell, I am afraid. The product itself is very rich and emollient, just what my dry skin needed, but I just cannot get past the smell! Another example of why they should lighten up their fragrances. (Still, more pleasant than the men’s lines, I am sure, my husband couldn’t get past that cologney smell to use them either)

  158. kev jang
    February 16, 2011 at 11:05 pm (6 years ago)

    Yes, Joseibi, Enprani is actually surprisingly quite good for a medium-range cosmetic and skincare brand! I think the Super Aqua 2X line (the newly revamped one) is supposedly better than the Super Aqua line and more hydrating, and so is the Go Yoon line which has a host of fermented Oriental herbs as ingredients inside. In South Korea, Enprani still does have some degree of star power endorsement with the likes of former Miss Korea 2000 Park Si Yeon, singer Son Dam Bi and actress Shin Ae, or even Han Hyo Joo endorsing for a while, but of course, they are not as famous as Song Hye Gyo. And marketing ploys including the reputation of the actress or actor is nearly everything now.

    Still remember Sanghwang’s HyangYoon Go cream which I told you about before? For some reason, I found it much more emollient than stuff from Coreana Nokdu or Laneige in winter in Canada, and I could not get past the fact that nobody knew about such an awesome cream then! It was also retailing at a price of Canadian$65 with a sample of eye cream and ampoule serum(starter serum) included which seemed to last nearly forever, close to the original Korean price of 65,000won! Despite the lesser reputation of some of these Korean brands, some of these skincare actually work as well as their Amorepacific or LG competitors.

    • Joseibi
      February 18, 2011 at 11:40 am (6 years ago)

      Dear Kev,

      So true, Amore and LG always got the most popular and internationally known celebs! I was quite surprised by the quality of some of the lesser known products too. Nobody knew what POINT was when I was selling it but it was just such a nice cleanser line. The marketing of Amore was so successful that most of the time I got women in their late thirties buying Laneige, because of the way it was marketed in the rest of Asia. They failed to even realize that Laneige is far too young for their mature skin. But that’s the magic of marketing using a beautiful actress like Song Hye Kyo!

      Yes, I remember the Sanghwang Hyang Yoon Go Cream too, $65 is a steal for the properties you mentioned! I forgot to say too, I love how those Korean brands give you deluxe samples within a gift set for the same price of one product alone. I think it’s a very smart strategy. The customer gets to try the other products, gets that sense of a bargain (one full size product plus freebies!) and the overall experience is great. This is even better than Japanese brands. 🙂

  159. Kev Jang
    February 18, 2011 at 1:09 pm (6 years ago)

    Yes, Joseibi, that sense of a steal(full size item or items with a few smaller samples of other items in a big box set) seems to be very specifically Korean as a cosmetic sales practice. It actually goes beyond the mere practice of giving out samples along with the purchase, and has a certain touch of luxury cosmetics attached to it too! For the Oriental herbal Korean brands I have tested out and tried before, including Hannule, Danahan, and Sanghwang, I find that they virtually do that all the time.
    Yes, getting beautiful actresses or handsome actors to market the products seem to be what Korean cosmetics do very well at. Sometimes, for a product which claims to market something like anti-wrinkle properties along with skin cell renewal, such as Danahan’s RG-II Premium Ex Cream(it retails at around 230,000 won which is like 220US dollars or so!!! Expensive!!!!), its success other than the ingredient of RG-II is the model Lee Da Hae who has very very good skin which actually has a pinkish glow even though it is fair.

  160. Kev Jang
    February 18, 2011 at 1:14 pm (6 years ago)

    Even here in Singapore and in Canada, as far as I remember, I do remember from many that brands like The Face Shop, Beauty Credit and Laneige are very popular even with women (and sometimes guys too) in their 30’s, because of the marketing niche they obtained with their young actors and actresses endorsing them. For example, a friend of mine who is in her 40’s actually told me that thanks to Jeon Ji Hyeon who endorsed the face Shop for a while, she got TFS products in Korea when there. The question of their effectiveness for her mature skin was another issue, but marketing is actually something that Korean cosmetic companies appear to do very well at. For example, for a new emerging brand like The Saem which came up in 2010, they used singer Lee seung Gi as a guest model for their product of the Diamond V 10C Lifting Serum, and that product became the bestselling product of their store for the year 2010!

  161. Kev Jang
    February 18, 2011 at 1:19 pm (6 years ago)

    A good example of a brand that is too young for people beyond their mid-20’s is Etude House, but you know, even my sisters who are in their late 20’s love it! Their friends too are rave about it. I guess using some celebrity like Lee Min Ho who is very popular in Korea also has an effect. A Taiwanese friend of mine told me that she always gets Tony Moly and Etude House stuff for her mother when in Korea, and I was a tad surprised especially because Etude and Tony Moly were both marketed at people in their 20’s, but for people in their 40’s and 50’s??? Some products might still work for them, but that she bought those stuff for her mother does point a lot to star appeal here too other than product efficacy.

    • Joseibi
      February 18, 2011 at 3:28 pm (6 years ago)

      LOL Etude House for 40+ year old?!! But I believe it! The drawback is, some of these older women used the wrong brands intended for someone 10-20 years their junior and then they think the products are bad. It happened to me when I was selling Laneige – so many times I would counselled older women to use more age appropriate skincare, but because of what they saw in magazines, they really wanted to try the young brands. Usually a spokesperson is chosen not only because of her good looks but she also represents the age group the brand targets – this holds true in Japanese brands so when you see a too-young girl advertising for a product you can tell it’s for that age group, not for more mature skin. This marketing works very well for sure, I think domestically people generally know what brand is designed for what age group, but when it is marketed internationally, I have seen Laneige promoted in Hong Kong even in magazines meant for more mature women too, which isn’t accurate. The only saving grace is that a country like Hong Kong is humid most days and some of the older ladies may get away with using Laneige, but if you have dry or wrinkled skin, it will be very inadequate.

      I must admit I do fall into that trap of my favorite or a very pretty celeb being the spokesperson of a certain brand. Misaki Ito was the one that prompted me to start using PN, which is now Maquillage! Pretty women sell products. The only brand I have never had any interest in, despite using my favorite actress Catherine Zeta Jones as a spokesperson, is Elizabeth Arden. For some reason there is nothing appealing whatsoever about their products! 😛

  162. Mehuli
    May 21, 2015 at 1:34 am (2 years ago)

    I will be trying this out pretty soon! Can’t wait. I am hearing really good things about it. Was good to hear about how you liked this product. Have you tried any other Su:m37 products?

    • Joseibi
      June 4, 2015 at 9:03 am (2 years ago)

      Hi Mehuli
      I have tried some of the other Su:m37 products (the waterful series, it might have been renamed now), I actually really liked them. They don’t have fragrance like most of the Korean skincare does, and I find they absorb very well and keep my skin moisturized for a long time even in the harsh Canadian winter, without being oily or sticky. But I do have drier skin so it may be different from being in a humid environment.


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