Like many of the beauty and skin care obsessed, I have been bitten by the Korean skin care bug, I cannot seem to stop buying and investigating Korean products. While my bank account isn’t very happy with my recent spending habits, my skin is taking to these new products extremely well. There were a few initial things that attracted me towards the Korean skin care trend, The Little Book of Skin Care definitely kicked things off, which slowly lead me towards websites like Peach & Lilly and Soko Glam and products such as sheet masks, essences, eye patches, etc. Essence seems to be one of the least understood products in the glamorous 10-step Korean skin care plan (along with ampoules). Even without real knowledge of what I was ordering I purchased a bottle of essence for myself and immediately started using it on my skin. I read the claims, ingredients and figured out where it belonged in my skin care routine, but still am not very sure what it does. So, in natural Cosmetic Composition fashion, I set out to do some research and teach myself and you about this emerging skin care product!
what is essence?
In simplest terms, essence is a pre-serum treatment used to help promote cell turnover, provide anti-aging measurements and most of all help hydrate the skin. The consistency of essence was originally very water-like but can now also be found in light gel consistencies, and even in gel-stick form. Essence should be used after cleansing and toning your skin and before applying serum and moisturizer. Depending on the product’s consistency the essence can be applied with your fingers or a soaked cotton ball.
which kind of ingredients are found in essences?
Due to the wide variety of treatment options that essence can provide the ingredients vary for each product. There is no general formula used to create these products, each is fairly unique. The main thing to keep in mind with essence is that they are created to be mild to moderate concentrations of serums. So even if an essence contains a lot of AHA’s or anti-aging ingredients they will be in very low concentrations, so it should not make your skin very sensitive towards them. The remaining portion of the formula will be full of hydrating ingredients.
my essence review: Benton Snail Bee High Content Essence
Immediately upon receiving my essence in the mail and looking over the box I realized that this is definitely not the essence for me. As a 21-year-old I’m fortunate enough to not need a heavy dose of AHA’s during the week or anti-aging ingredients. The Benton product that I purchased quote “helps in skin whitening and wrinkle improvement”. I was clearly so excited about purchasing an essence I didn’t put much thought into what I bought. However, after about 2 months of use I’m pleasantly surprised with how this product has been treating my skin. I’ve noticed that my skin has a nice overall glow and has become smoother since the start of summer.
The active ingredient, glycerin (2.83%), is a humectant which makes this product great for keeping my skin hydrated after applying my toner. Snail secretion, bee venom, and azelaic acid are just a few of the other key ingredients that provide the brightening and anti-wrinkle benefits previously mentioned.
Snail Secretion Filtrate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Pentylene Glycol, Arbutin, Zenthoxylum Peperitum Fruit Extract, Uanea Barbata (Lichen) Extract, Pulsatilla Koreana Extract, Bee Venom, Diospyros Kaki Leaf Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Plantago Asiatica Extract, Laminaria Digitata Extract, Ulmus Campestris (Elm) Extract, Althaea rosea flower extract, Aloe barbadensis leaf extract, Bacillus Ferment, Azelaic Acid, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Beta-Glucan, Adenosine, Betaine, Butylene Glycol, Human Oligopeptide-1, Allantoin, Arginine, Panethnol
where to find essence products
The Korean skin care trend is in full force currently, but it’s hard to find many Korean skin care products in stores here in the US. So websites like Soko Glam and Peach & Lily make the hunt easier. Below are some helpful links that I found:
- Soko Glam essences
- Peach & Lily essences
- Find the Best Korean Essence for You
- 3 Holy Grail Essences
- Which Skin Care Essence is Right for You?
Have you ever tried an essence? Have any more questions? I’d love to hear below!