Did I splurge on my birthday month? I wish, but I did not.
EGO QV FACE OIL FREE MOISTURISER A gentle moisturiser that contains vitamin B3 and pro-vitamin B5. I believe this is great for day moisturiser as it claims to minimise shine. It contains Glycerin, therefore this act as a humectant. I purchased this on market place, since it’s not available locally here in Indonesia. Price IDR 280K for 75gr
LA ROCHE-POSAY TOLERIANE SENSITIVE FLUIDE Yes, another oil-free moisturiser. This one is formulated with a high concentration of prebiotic thermal spring water for a double repair action of the skin barrier. This is not cheap, but it hydrates and moisturize at the same time, because of the humectant (glycerin) and emollient (Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride) ingredients inside this tiny bottle. I also purchased this on market place, since it’s not available yet in Indonesia. Price IDR 390K for 40ml
EGO QV GENTLE WASH No pun intended, but I just realized I bought skincare products this month with Glycerin in each ingredients’ list. And the second EGO QV brand that I purchased, but this one is available in our local drugstores (tip: buy when on promo). If only they carry the 1kg ones, I’d buy it in a heartbeat, since I use this for my body. Price IDR 267,5K for 500gr
SOLELUNA is a new local skincare brand from Indonesia, just launched on 8/8/2021. Local beauty brands are so in right now (especially in market places), people here seem to put a lot more trust and confidence of using one.
Disclaimer: Yours truly is the mastermind behind the products, yes I’m their freelance product developer. But I’m totally honest about this review. Feel free to DM me on Instagram if you need more information(s).
SOLELUNA Behind The Scenes: when my two lady bosses and me discussed about this startup project, we decided to keep the prices affordable, without sacrificing the formulas for each product. And we also decided to make a no-fuss and simple skincare essentials for all.
Currently, SOLELUNA has four SKU’s: Hydrating Face Toner, Brightening Face Serum, Brightening Day Cream, and Brightening BB Cream. FYI, more products coming up before 2021 ends, so watch this space.
OK, let’s start with the review, shall we?
This is my personal favorite, first: it is fungal-acne safe, and it has minimal ingredients. It only has 8 ingredients on the list, including Zinc PCA and Glycerin. Texture as light and clear as water, I prefer to use this as a mist as I don’t use toner with cotton pad anymore. Instantly cooling, refreshing and hydrates well. Price IDR 72,6K for 100ml
For Niacinamide fans’ out there, this contains 4% of it, so rejoice. Plus Gluconolactone (it’s a PHA-new generation of AHA), and Zinc PCA, it’ll be a favorite for those who wants to brighten their skin without vitamin C. Texture like a light gel, it absorbs quickly and didn’t leave a sticky feeling. And you’d be glad to know that it layers well with the next step on your skincare routine, because it didn’t clump or got foamy. Price IDR 110K for 15ml
If you’ve been following me, you’d probably know that I apply three layers of moisturizers, first: water, then humectant and emollient. This cream contains Glycerin as humectant and Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride as emollient in one jar. Practical, so I just have to damp my skin with water and apply this, without having to layer. Even though it is called a cream, but the texture is more like a gel-cream and is easy to absorb. Price IDR 88K for 10gr
It contains Zinc Oxide, a physical sunscreen, but I still recommend you to apply sunscreen on top of this if you go out. Because it’s part skincare and part makeup, it does have Dimethicone, so you’d better cleanse them well when you take them off. Only one shade (brown) is available, but it doesn’t leave my skin look greyish. In fact, it sort of matches itself to my skin tone when applied. It was placed inside an airless pump container, so it might take a few pumps before the formula actually goes out. Price IDR99K for 15gr
This exfoliating toner had me at their Prebiotics & Probiotics claims, to support the skin microbiome. And my first ever purchase from this French made brand.
Just a glimpse of this microbiome thing, our skin is home to millions of bacteria, fungi and viruses, invisible life-forms known as the skin microbiome. In order to make our skin healthy, a balanced microbiome is crucial. We need to keep those good bacterias, and banish the unhealthy ones.
Enter Gallinée Face Vinegar. Acts like a toner, it claims to cleansed away those unhealthy bacterias and eliminates dead skin cells, allowing better absorption of good bacteria and other ingredients in the rest of our skincare routine.
Their first active ingredient is called Actibiome, a novel prebiotic that works to calm stressed skin and prevent it from further irritations alongside gentle postbiotic acids that allow the skin’s beneficial bacteria to flourish. The second actives is hibiscus-infused Apple Cider Vinegar, but no worries, it didn’t smell as sour as the real ACV.
Some said, this is a dupe for Biologique Recherche P50 Lotion. I’ve tried it before and I found Gallinée ones is more light (in terms of the formula and scent). I remember I have to dilute P50 with water so it won’t sting my skin, but I apply this face vinegar directly without no stinging at all. I do recommend this if you have sensitive skin like me.
So how do incorporate this exfo toner in my skincare routine? You’d probably know that I don’t use toner everyday since my #skinimalism journey. But I do use Adapalene on daily basis, and it doesn’t exfoliate. A lot of misconception that retinol exfoliates your skin, well….it does not. I apply this exfo toner with cotton pad twice a week (Monday and Thursday), at night time when I don’t use Adapalene. If you are using Retinol like me, I suggest you skip your retinol while using this, because Apple Cider Vinegar is actually a gentle form of AHA. Avoid applying Retinol and AHA together at the same time as it can cause serious irritation. Instead, if you are using this toner, apply hydrating serum afterwards.
Unlike some of the exfo toners that I’ve tried before, this is the only one that didn’t make my skin looks red afterwards. However, don’t expect this toner to act as water (even with the watery texture), it didn’t absorb as fast and it did left a bit tackiness on skin. But, still on comfortable level, and I found that my hydrating serum and moisturizer sit very well after using this toner.
Due to my skinimalism routine, I do skip toner step these days. So I go straight to actives after face cleanser. But, I do love to mist my face (especially during hot and sweaty days) and if my skin got very irritated due to sunburn or retinoid’s usage, I do CSM with hydrating toner.
This is one of those hydrating toner for such purposes, as I don’t apply toner with cotton pads anymore. The texture looks like water but doesn’t feel like one, once applied. It’s slightly thicker (not viscous though), there’s a slippery feel and it gives a slightly dewy look on skin. As I do have sensitive and easily irritated skin, I do find this toner comfortable and cooling, just like the name stated.
It has 85% bamboo water which is known for skin calming purpose, Low & High Molecular Hyaluronic Acid for hydrating effect and Polyglutamic Acid for absorption and moisture. It’s a slightly acidic toner of pH 5,5 which calms, hydrates and moisturizes at the same time.
If you are experiencing heatwave weather, or all year round summer (like me here in Indonesia), put this inside a spritz bottle, let it cool down inside the fridge (not freezer) and spray it on your face. You can definitely get extra freshness and hydration boost easily, anytime of the day.
Since I already bought this on sale, IDR 112K for 160ml (it’s already available officially in Indonesia), I will finish this one bottle, but I don’t think I’ll repurchase. I don’t enjoy its’ after feel, as I prefer hydrating toner with thin like water consistency. I prefer water mist like Avène, a very straightforward soothing mist with no after feel.
Whatever you’ve experienced during Adapalene’s treatment: DON’T QUIT & NEVER STOP.
Scrolling through my posts in this blog, I realized I missed to update my Adapalene Journey. So I thought, I just compile them plus giving you an update on my skin condition these days. If you haven’t read about my first encounter with Adapalene, read here.
My last update in this blog was on week 8, which looked pretty good already. But I did update on my Instagram Stories, so you might want to check the highlights here.
So they said that Retinol Uglies aka purging due to Retinol will last for approximately 6 weeks, but I saw improvement on week 8. I guess my skin had a lot of closed comedones aka clogged pores, that’s why I presumed it took longer for my skin. Sharing you weeks after week 8, so you might have a greater glimpse of the purging situation.
Then one day, on June 2021 I stopped using Adapalene, because I had botox treatment (click here). Yes, after Botox you have to stop any exfoliation for 14 days. That was the beginning of another acne hell.
Obviously, I didn’t last for 14 days exfo fasting, on day 10 I decided to start using Adapalene again. After some research, I found out that we shouldn’t stop using Adapalene even though our skin got clearer. IT IS A FOREVER THING! Thankfully, it’s safe to use for a long run.
Lessons learned: DON’T STOP using Adapalene even though you already satisfied on the result. And please note that I also have other products in my skincare routine to help achieve my latest skin condition.
If you’ve been following my hauls recently, you’d notice that I purchased more cleansing products than treatment. That’s because I finished them quite fast, since I washed my face three times a day.
Yes, you heard me right. Three times:
in the morning straight after waking up (because I apply retinol at night and it made my skin feel burned somehow after I turned off my Air Conditioner).
later after I exercise under the sun (sweats mixed with bacterias, so better wash off).
and in the evening before sleeping time.
So, it is obvious that I aim for gentler face cleanser. I love my Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser, but I do like to try others. And I stumbled upon this.
This specific SKU is not available yet in Indonesia’s drugstores, therefore I purchased it on marketplace (IDR290K for 150ml). When I searched for information for this in their UK and US website, they don’t seem to carry this product. They only have CLEANSING FOAM sans the GENTLE. So I guess Avène only marketed this Gentle Cleansing Foam in Asia, but still it was made in France.
Disclaimer: on daily basis, I rarely wear makeup anymore since pandemic strikes, so I don’t use this as makeup remover, even though they claim it can also remove makeup. I do appreciate that they formulated this for Asian sensitive skin with only 10 ingredients on the list.
It is foamy, but it’s soap free, colorant free and fragrance free as well. And of course, it is rich in Avène Thermal Spring Water which clinically proven to be soothing and anti-irritating. I do recommend this if you have sensitive skin that’s easily irritated. It is really that good and gentle.
I love the soft cloud-like texture, it feels so luxurious when it glides evenly on skin. It’s also great if you like to dry cleanse: apply on dry skin and massage for about 30 seconds, then add a bit water for another 30 seconds, then rinse them off. Anyway, that’s how I cleanse my face with this wonderful cleansing foam.
It cleanse my non-makeup face really well and it didn’t leave any slippery feel. Don’t worry of this cleansing foam is going to make your skin tight and dry. It won’t. And as it was developed for sensitive and irritated skin in mine, my skin is loving it so far without any bad reactions. I’d totally purchase it again.
Ingredients (copied from Avene’s Singapore website): AVENE THERMAL SPRING WATER (AVENE AQUA), WATER (AQUA), SODIUM COCOAMPHOACETATE, SODIUM COCOYL GLUTAMATE, CITRIC ACID, DISODIUM EDTA, LACTIC ACID, PROPYLENE GLYCOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, SODIUM CHLORIDE