Monday, 31 March 2014

Mia2 and The Orange Experiment

Today, seeing I finally have an orange at home, I decided to try out the 'Orange Experiment' with my Clarisonic Mia2 to show how well it cleanses.

The things I used for this experiment:
One orange
CC Cream by Chanel
Clarisonic Mia2

The orange is used to represent our skin, the holes being our pores.

First, I spread some CC Cream onto the orange. Imagine this is yourself applying the foundation onto your skin.

Without using any cleanser, I tried to wash the CC Cream off with my bare hands. I massaged the orange for one minute under running water.

It felt very greasy and gross to wash it off with my bare hands. Even after one minute of washing the orange with water, the CC Cream had not come out of the orange skin, and even worse, the CC Cream had sunk into the holes. Imagine the orange being your skin, and the more you massage with your bare fingers, you are actually pushing the dirt back into your pores!

Moreover, my hands became very greasy, and some of the orange remains stained my hand!

Now, let's compare this with cleansing with the Clarisonic Mia2:

So again, I spread some of my CC Cream onto the orange.

Then, I wet the Clarisonic Mia2 with some water, and massaged it against the orange for one minute.

As I did not use any cleanser, there is a little bit of the CC Cream left on the orange, but it did not feel sticky or greasy. None of the CC Cream had sunk into the holes, and the holes were very clean. Imagine this being your skin, and your pores are clean after every wash! The brush, however, had absorbed all of the foundation.

The results are very obvious after the experiment! The Clarisonic Mia2 cleans much better than using bare hands, and it cleans deep into the pores, but does not damage the skin. On the other hand, by using bare hands to cleanse your face, can actually push the dirt back into your skin, hence enlarging your pores, and creating blackheads.

I have been using my Clarisonic Mia2 everyday, for two weeks now, and I absolutely love it! Hubby has been using it on random occasions too, though he uses it on High Speed as he has thicker skin. I have realised that my pores look smaller now, and I'm very satisfied with my purchase! :)

Fore more information on the Clarisonic Mia2, please check out my previous post on The Skincare Gadget Craze.

Thanks for reading, and have a nice day! :)

Friday, 28 March 2014

Feminine Hygiene

Feminine hygiene is an essential element of importance in the well being of a woman, because in addition to preventing odours, itching, and discomfort, practicing feminine hygiene can also prevent bacterial infections from occurring. This is particularly important to pregnant women, as pregnant women cannot take over-the-counter medications, as well as not being able to take many of the medications prescribed for vaginal infections, and it can be a recurring problem if not treated properly.

Okay, so what exactly is "Vaginal Thrush" or "Vaginal Infection"?

Vaginal thrush, also known as candidiasis, is a yeast infection and is very common. They can develop in the warm, moist parts of your body, such as the vagina, mouth, and skin. Common symptoms include pain, itching, and vaginal discharge. They get so annoying because it's so embarrassing to itch that area in public. Sometimes they can get so itchy that they wake you up in the middle of the night too! The treatments for vaginal thrush include:

  • an anti-thrush pessary (inserted like a tampon to treat Candida in the vagina)
  • an anti-thrush cream (a cream to treat Candida on the skin around the entrance to the vagina)
  • anti-thrush tablets (oral treatments, but with many side-effects, and not suitable for pregnant women)

There are many products on the market that claim to maintain your natural vagina pH, as well as support treatment for vaginal infections. I'm sure many of you have heard of the brand "Lactacyd", and that seems to be the more popular brand out there, but have you considered something more organic?

I never used to use any of these feminine hygiene cleansers until my first pregnancy in 2011, where I started using the Feminine Hygiene Wash by Lactacyd. The lady at the shop recommended it to me (amongst all other brands of similar products in the shop), and seeing how popular the brand was, I bought it.

The Feminine Hygiene Wash by Lactacyd is quite watery and has a soapy scent. This is suitable for pregnant women as well as times when you have a period. Since using the Feminine Hygiene wash by Lactacyd, I didn't feel any itchiness "down there" and I didn't have any infections.

After giving birth, I switched to using the Cleansing Daily Protection Extra Moisturising by Lactacyd.

This Feminine Daily Wash by Lactacyd is thicker in texture and has a fresh flower scent, and is suitable for daily use. After giving birth, my body changed as well as my hormones - I never used to have eczema but I started having them; and I started becoming more prone to vaginal infections. Most of the time, using this Daily Wash was fine and it didn't make me itch, but I did have vaginal thrush now and then.

I am now pregnant with my second child, and I continued to buy the Feminine Hygiene Wash by Lactacyd, but it made me itch like mad - when I was infection-free, it would make me itchy down there, and when I did have a vaginal infection, it didn't help relieve the symptoms at all!

Since then, I have used my normal Physiogel Shower Cream (fragrant free) to clean my intimate areas as well as the rest of my body. The Physiogel Shower Cream was the ONLY product that would not make me itchy, but the only problem was that it did not help prevent vaginal infections.

One day, while I was shopping for Jasper's things at Citistore Tsuen Wan, I came across this...Intimate Cleanser by Helan - Made in Italy! The Linea Mamma line is especially made for pregnant women! The box has Italian written all over it, but I was lucky enough to find English written inside the box!

I had never heard of this brand before, but I was so desperate for solutions to help prevent anymore itchiness! The lady recommended this, and explained to me that it did not contain as many chemicals as other brands out there, and that it contains natural and organic ingredients. I paid around HK$120, and it is quite pricey for a 200mL bottle (the Lactacyd comes in 250mL bottles and is much cheaper), but I purchased it with a 20% discount, so it wasn't too bad for something natural & organic.

There is a ugly flower scent that I don't love, but at least I know it's natural and not fragranced. It gets quite foamy when added with water, but it's free of SLS and SLES, preservatives and synthetic colourants, and it contains organic Tea Tree oil and organic Marigold. More importantly, you don't need to use a lot each time to get the best results! I have used this for over one week now, and I feel much better, although sometimes, I still feel a little itchy, especially after my shower, but it's nothing serious and definitely nothing like what I had before!

These are the things that I now do in order to help prevent vaginal infections:
  • Use a natural & organic intimate cleanser
  • Wash my panties with hubby's Dettol Shower Gel instead of allowing the maids to wash them
  • Use my own personal towel (made of pure cotton) to dry my body after taking showers
  • Wear a fragrant-free pantyliner, and change it regularly
  • Use panties made from bamboo charcoal. I used to use cotton panties, but these ones dry much faster and do not feel tight around my thighs, and what I love about them most is that they are "one size fits all" as they can expand to quite big in size but aren't baggy like grandma's panties - perfect for pregnancy! They're usually on sale at Citistore, so that makes them around HK$50 for a pair, and I usually buy them in grey, as that's the natural colour of bamboo charcoal fibre!

This topic feels so weird to talk about in public, but indeed it is very important for women to be aware of such infections, so that we can all find ways to prevent them from occurring! Of course, there are way more brands out there than just Lactacyd and Helan, but it's all just about finding the right one for you! I did also try the Intimate Cleanser by Sebamed, but I'm not a fan of Sebamed (I was disappointed at how fragranced their products were for babies and adults with sensitive skin), but just in case you're interested:

It did used to be fragranced, but now that I've left it there for so long, the fragranced scent has gone, just leaving the bad chemical smell. I received this sample in the bag that the hospital gave me after I had given birth to my first child - nothing special, and I didn't continue buying it.

I hope I have been helpful, and if you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below! Thanks :)

For more information on some of the products, please visit the links below:

Helan (only in Chinese):

Sunna Character Bamboo Charcoal Panties:

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

The Skincare Gadget Craze

Perhaps it's the right age, or the ads I see on TV, or friends who have also purchased and recommended it...but it's finally my turn; I have finally invested in an electronic face cleansing brush!

There are many types of these products on the market now, but the main ones I was looking at, was the electronic face cleansing brush, as well as the facial massager.

Sonic Cleansing Brush or Ionic Gadget for Cleansing & Moisturising?

I was slightly worried as there were many mixed comments on the suitability of these products for sensitive skin, but my friend who has really sensitive skin, has had no problems with the Clarisonic Mia2, so I purchased it too. I also felt that I would have no use for the Hada Crie, because I believe that if I cleanse well enough, my skincare products would absorb better into my skin anyway and leave me with hydrated skin. The Hada Crie has the cleansing function as well as a moisturising function, but I thought that I wouldn't need the extras at such a high price. You are also not advised to use it if you are pregnant or having your period. I will still be talking about the Hada Crie in this post, but the review is based on my sister-in-law's use of the product.

Mia 2 by Clarisonic (from HK$1000~1500)

Key Features:
  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Comes with a Brush Head for Sensitive Skin
  • Can be used to cleanse out makeup residue
  • Bristles are easy to dry
  • Uses sonic motion (like the Sonicare electric toothbrush)
  • Two power levels selection
  • Rechargeable: can be used when travelling
  • T-timer prompts
  • Many good reviews on the Internet

The Clarisonic Mia2 comes in a box measuring 19cm(L) x 14cm(W) x 10cm(D).

Inside the box:

Travel Case
White Mia2 with plastic cap
Sample Size Cleanser 30mL
pLink Charger
Sensitive Brush Head
User Manual

The charger attaches to the device magnetically. When attached, the device will vibrate once, and the light will start flashing, and when the Mia2 is fully charged, the light will stop flashing. When you unplug the device from the charger, the device will vibrate twice.

Before using the Mia2 for the first time, it is recommended that you charge the Mia2 for 24 hours prior to using. Like other new toothbrushes that I use, I will soak the brush in warm water prior to use, so that the bristles will become softer when I use them, and will therefore not irritate my skin.

How To Use:

1. Before first use, charge the device for 24 hours.
2. Remove eye makeup by hand
3. Apply cleanser directly to moistened skin or to a damp brush head
4. Push the on/off button to turn on your sonic cleansing system
5. Select desired speed
6. Follow T-TIMER prompts while gently moving brush head in small circular motions: 20 seconds on your forehead; 20 seconds on your nose and chin; 10 seconds on each cheek
7. The Clarisonic will automatically shut off after the cleansing cycle
8. Rinse skin thoroughly to remove excess cleanser
9. For a finer brush to clean the nose, you can remove the inner brush from the brush, and attach to the device.
10. To remove the brush head from the device, just simply put the cap on, then twist counter-clockwise.

Personal Experience:

I purchased my Mia2 from my friend's sister-in-law, who sold it to me for HK$1000, which is considered cheap, as I saw others selling it for up to HK$1500 at other places. Be careful in buying any fakes who sell them for less than HK$1000 though!

For information on how to spot a fake Clarisonic, see here:

I was very excited when I received my device, but since it had to be charged for 24 hours first, I waited patiently for it to finish charging first.

The products that I use with the Mia2 have not changed - cleanser, toner, essence, eye cream, and day/night cream.

Day 1:

I wetted my face as well as the brush head, then applied my usual face cleanser onto the brush head and massaged my face with the device; however, my foaming cleanser became surprisingly foamy and the foam ended up in my nostrils - disastrous! I was too into the foam issue that I wasn't paying much attention to the timer, and when the device suddenly switched off, I was very surprised to see that one minute had gone by way too quickly! I turned the device back on to finish the rest of my face, as well as using it on my neck for a few seconds. I only used Low Speed, and I realised the brush was not as harsh as others claimed it to be, but then again, I did soak the brush in some warm water before using it, so perhaps that made the difference! I did feel some prickly feeling when using the device on my face, but it wasn't too hard to bear, and it did leave my face a little dry and tingly afterwards, but the problem was easily resolved when I applied my skincare products onto my face afterwards.

Day 2:

I realised that I had a small pimple on my forehead, probably because the device cleanses deep down into the skin. I improved the method of how I used the device - I would wet the brush as well as my face, and then squeeze the cleanser onto my palms and create foam with my hands before applying it onto my face. Then, I would use the device and massage it on my face as usual. This new method was much easier as I could control how much foam the cleanser created. I also took out the inner brush from the brush to clean the finer areas around my nose.

Day 3:

I continued using my improved method, but I accidentally pressed High Speed - it felt like a big scrub on my face, and it did leave my face slightly painful and red afterwards. My face also felt very dry afterwards, but also very soft and smooth.

The Mia2 is waterproof, so I usually use it in the shower, and then I wash the brush head with some soap before rinsing it out with warm water. I run my fingers between the bristles to get the water out before capping on the lid. I also press the brush against my towel a few times to get rid of any excess water. I leave my device overnight to dry, and sometimes I will plug it back into the charger so that it dries faster. Note that although the Mia2 is waterproof, the charger is not, so you must dry your device completely before charging it.

It is recommended to change the brush head every 3 months for hygienic reasons. My friend, who has the Clarisonic Mia, explained to me that the brush head does become yellow afterwards, and if you really bother to scrape the bristles, you'll see some pink remains - is that our dead skin?

I feel that I am okay with using the Mia2 everyday at Low Speed, but as for High Speed, as it is more of a scrub, I guess I could use it only once a week or even less. If my skin feels too dry during the winter, I may consider using the Mia2 less frequently, but it's not a problem now.

Since using the Clarisonic Mia2, I have realised that my skincare products absorb more quickly into my skin, and that my skin feels smoother and softer. With cleaner skin, my pores also look smaller too!

Hada Crie CM-N8800BF by Hitachi (around HK$2000)

My sister-in-law (Grace) purchased this recently and has been using it for a few weeks already. As I am pregnant, I am unable to use this product, so I will be posting based on her review. Please note that this model is equivalent to CM-N820, but the plug is a HK plug instead of the two-legged Japanese plug.

Key Features:
  • Made in Japan
  • Pore Cleansing & Moisturising
  • 3 Operating Modes: Cleansing, Moisturise, and Mask
  • Titanium Head: Prevent allergy
  • Dimple design which let you use thicker toner
  • Can use your regular toner, lotion, and mask
  • AC/Rechargeable: can be used when travelling
  • 3 power levels selection
  • Auto-stop Function

Inside the box:

White Hada Crie unit (I have already capped on the cotton pad)
Hada Crie holder
2 cotton rings to keep the cotton pad in place (one is already placed on the device)
Summary Card (in Japanese)
User Manual

How To Use:

1. Before first use, charge the device for at least 8 hours.
2. You must remove all makeup before using this device.
3. There is a contact plate (for ion induction) at the back of the device, and you need to wrap your hand around to device to "complete the circuit" in order for your device to work.
4. Push the on/off button to turn on your device.
5. Push "MODE" to select what you want to do: Cleansing, Moisturise, Mask.
The default setting is at Cleansing.
6. Push "LEVEL" to select speed. For first time users, it is advised to use the lowest speed. The default level is at Low.
7. If you are on the Cleansing Mode, place a cotton pad on the titanium plate and snap the cotton ring over it. Slowly soak the cotton pad with your toner, and massage onto your face.
8. If you are on the Moisturise or Mask Mode, there is no need to use a cotton pad, in which case, you just add the products directly onto your face, and massage with the device.
The way to massage is to either glide the Hada Crie onto your face, or by making circular movements on your face.
The way to glide the Hada Crie onto your face.
9. Place the device on your face and it will start vibrating.
10. The device will turn off automatically after 5 minutes.
11. Do NOT wash the device with water as it is not waterproof!

As I was unable to test it on my own face, Grace turned the device on and asked me to hear the vibrating sound it created when she placed the device on her face - yes, it does vibrate!

Her Personal Experience:

Grace Cheung, the winner of the Miss Asia Pageant 2007, now works as an artist/actress at Asia Television Limited. She travels quite a lot, and skincare therefore plays a very important part to her - she applies heavy makeup nearly everyday, and she must make sure that she cleanses her face very well as well as keeping it completely hydrated. She has very dry and sensitive skin.

Grace purchased the Hada Crie from Broadway Electronics for HK$2000, and she uses it every evening before going to bed. She has tried all the modes and levels of the device, but says that she uses all the modes in order most of the time, but sometimes without the mask function.

Cleanse: Cotton pad is required to clean with a toner.
Moisturise: Can use the device directly with essence or moisturiser.
Mask: Can use the device directly with a paper mask or gel mask.

You may need to experiment with the types of cotton pads to use. The below photo is of a thinner type of cotton pad, which ripped quite easily. You should look for a silkier type of cotton pad for better results.

A used cotton pad after the Cleansing Mode.

Each mode completes its course in 5 minutes, and the device will automatically stop when the time is up. Grace finds that five minutes is too long for cleansing, as she usually only takes three minutes, but she usually needs six to seven minutes for the essence to absorb completely.

Unlike the Clarisonic Mia2, the Hada Crie is not waterproof, so you cannot wash the device with water, but instead, Grace wipes it with alcohol after every use.

After using the device, she has felt that her face feels more clean, moisturised, and soft.

These products are both very popular on the market recently, especially the newest version of the Hada Crie which has the warm and cooling functions. If you really care about your skin, and is willing to invest in products like these, I can assure you that they are really worth the price! If you do a Google search, you'll see all the other great reviews on these products too! I hope you enjoyed reading, and if you have any questions, please feel free to comment below!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Shampooing AFTER You Condition?

Since having my hair dyed and bleached a few months ago, I've always had very dry, tangly, and frizzy hair. Due to pregnancy discomforts, I refuse to wash my hair as often, as staying in the shower for too long, makes me nauseas. I also dislike drying my hair, as it usually takes forever to dry (even with a hairdryer), and I don't like that greasy feeling on my hands when touching my hair - I don't even get why my hands get greasy because I washed my hair already!

Recently, I read an article on the Daily Mail that caught my attention - Does shampooing AFTER you condition make your hair shinier? New trend for washing 'in reverse' takes hold on the new trend.

"The technique is particularly effective for people with finer hair, says the costume designer from Austin, Texas, since it leaves your hair shiny and voluminous."

The new way is to do it "backwards":
1) If your hair is tangly, put a little oil on your hands and then comb it through before washing
2) Wet your hair and put conditioner in
3) Leave the conditioner in your hair for a few minutes, while in the meantime, you can wash the rest of your body
4) Rinse out the conditioner and shampoo lightly

According to, this reverse hair-washing method only works on certain types of hair; if your hair is thicker or more dry, the website says that conditioning post-shampoo is best.

Genie's Review:

Before starting this new backwards hair-washing regime...

  • My scalp would feel greasy and itchy around 2-3 days after washing it, but the ends would still be dry
  • I prefer to wash my hair around 6 o'clock in the afternoon, so that my hair could take the entire evening to dry before I take out the hairdryer
  • Even letting my hair air dry for the entire evening, it still takes me 15 minutes to dry my hair with a hairdryer, and it still feels slightly damp

When I first tried it, I felt slightly uneasy...afterall, I had been using shampoo before conditioner for the past 20+ years!

Since starting this new backwards hair-washing regime...

  • I still wash my hair at the same time, and I still let my hair to air dry, but it takes me less than 5 minutes to dry my hair completely with a hairdryer
  • My hands do not feel greasy when drying my hair anymore
  • My hair feels soft and smooth after washing (I can't help touching my hair every now and then haha)
  • My hair looks shinier and healthier
  • My hair is not as tangly
  • My scalp does not start getting greasy until ONE WEEK after washing my hair!!
  • My scalp is not itchy anymore, although it has been itchy for the past 26 years, and I have tried so many things to relieve it!!
I have also tried applying oil to my hair a few minutes before washing, and results were even more obvious then! The oil I applied is the Elvive Extraordinary Oil for Coloured Hair by L'Oreal, which can be used before shampoo, before drying, or on dry hair as a finishing touch.

I have had amazing results after using this new regime, and I will continue using it; however, I read that it is really not for everybody! I guess the type of products you use is also a big factor, as well as the type of hair you have, but it's worth a try, isn't it?

For more information, please visit:

Saturday, 15 March 2014

The HUMID Months of the Year...

Spring has arrived, and if you're still using your winter skincare products, it's about time to start changing your products to summer skincare products. For me, I'm still finishing off some products that I used in the winter, but I have already changed my cleanser and serum, as the ones I used in the winter were too oily for me to use in this humid season.

Some people say that you should change your products every now and then, because if you keep using the same product, your skin will get used to it, and the product won't be effective on your skin anymore.

If you have really sensitive skin, I would recommend you to stick to the good brands you are using, but do change your products every now and then - at least have a set of winter products as well as a set of products to use for the summer, so that you can switch between them during the seasons.

In this post, I will be sharing with you the products hubby and I are currently using, and whether I would continue to repurchase them or not.

I have been told that I have combination skin, dry skin, and sensitive skin. I guess my skin changes from time to time. My nose tends to go oily quite easily, the rest of my face is quite dry, and my skin is quite thin - you can see the little veins near my cheekbones! Fortunately, I seldom have any pimples, except for the occasional one or two that I get from pregnancy or from using the wrong skincare products.

Hubby on the other hand, has very sensitive yet oily skin and he gets pimples very easily! I don't dare to change his products, as new products often cause him breakouts. His skin quality has definitely improved since using the skincare products I have bought for him though!

Step One: Remove Makeup

Cleansing Milk Makeup Remover
Pros: Not drying to the skin; can remove eye makeup too
Cons: Cannot remove heavy makeup; feels sticky and greasy if unwashed with water; does not completely remove all makeup; usually fragranced
Brands Used: Orlane
Repurchase? No

Oil Based Makeup Remover
Pros: Convenient (no need to use a separate eye makeup remover); usually fragrance-free; can remove heavy makeup
Cons: Made my eyes go blurry if it accidentally went into eyes; don't like it when it drips down my elbows; too drying; sometimes causes breakouts; don't like the feeling of washing oil off my face; leaves an oily feeling afterwards
Brands Used: Clinique, DHC, Fancl, and Shu Uemura
Repurchase? No

Oil Based Gel or Cream Makeup Remover
Pros: Convenient; not runny and easy to handle; not drying to the skin; can remove heavy makeup
Cons: Requires time to rub it in, then wiping face with tissue before washing it off with water (as advised by staff)
Brands Used: Chanel, Clinique, Kosé and Missha
Repurchase? Yes, still using it to remove heavy makeup

Water Based Makeup Remover
Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin; hassle-free; satisfaction when seeing all the makeup being wiped off; can do it on-the-go
Cons: Need to use a lot of cotton pads to remove makeup; cannot remove heavy makeup
Brands Used: Innisfree and Vichy
Repurchase? Yes, still using it to remove light daily makeup

Eye Makeup Remover
Brands Used: Chanel, M.A.C., and Vichy. Chanel is my top pick!

Step Two: Face Cleansing

Foam Cleanser Moisture by Laneige (180mL)

Pros: Mild (does not irritate pimples); cleanses very well; noticed minimised and cleaner pores; creates foam easily; not drying to the skin; face feels refreshed and moisturised after use; a little goes a long way
Cons: The smell is bearable but I don't love it
Repurchase? Yes

Gentle Skin Cleanser by Cetaphil (473mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin and acne prone skin, cheap price
Cons: Does not clean very well; only suitable for normal to oily skin
Repurchase? Yes (only because hubby refuses to change to other products). 
Hubby has also tried the cleansers from Physiogel and Kiehl's which also did not cause him breakouts, but then again, Cetaphil is much cheaper to buy and he refuses to change - that's okay as long as he wipes his face with a good toner to get rid of the dirt afterwards.

Step Three: Apply Toner

For me, I use a few different toners depending on my skin condition that day.

White Plus HP Gentle Renewing Brightening Peel by Clarins (125mL)
The name of this product can be quite confusing, but it is actually a peeling/exfoliating product in liquid gel form, and can be used as a toner, or before your normal toner. I use this only when I have pimples on my face, and it helps clear the pimples faster. This cannot replace your weekly scrub, but it helps maintain the quality of your skin. The way to apply it is to soak a cotton pad in the lotion and apply to the face and neck, avoiding the eye contour.

Pros: Gentle enough to be used everyday; helps clear pimples faster; skin absorbs products better after using this; minimises pores; a simple way to exfoliate skin; lotion only comes out when you squeeze the bottle so it doesn't all pour out
Cons: None that I can think of
Repurchase? Yes, I just went to buy myself another one!

Rosewater Balancing Mist Intense (Deluxe Edition) by Jurlique (200mL)

Pros: Nice scent of rose; can be lightly misted directly onto face or misted into hands and gently pressed onto skin; uses natural ingredients; alcohol-free, hydrating; nice design of the bottle
Cons: Not advised to apply using a cotton pad so that cannot wipe off any dirt or residue as you normally would with a toner; if misted onto face directly, need to use hands to press gently too; cannot be used as a before and after makeup mist as the water particles are too big to absorb by itself; quite expensive
Repurchase? No, since it's not fascinating, and I'd like to try other things.

Bee Care Calendula Toner by Holika Holika (140mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin including acne prone skin; contains propolis extract and calendula extract; can see the calendula flowers inside the glass bottle; alcohol-free; hydrating; has a nice scent; much cheaper than the Calendula Toner from Kiehl's
Cons: Formula not as effective as the Calendula Toner from Kiehl's; not suitable if you are allergic to bee products
Repurchase? No

Calendula Herbal-Extract Toner by Kiehl's (500mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin including acne prone skin; alcohol-free; soothes and improves problem areas (acne and acne scars); nice & relaxing flower scent; can see the calendula flowers inside the plastic bottle; comes in two sizes - 250mL and 500mL
Cons: More suited for normal-to-oily skin types so it may not hydrating enough for those with dry and sensitive skin (but problem can be resolved by using moisturising serums or creams after the application of toner); quite expensive
Repurchase? Yes, this is our third bottle already!

Clarifying Lotion Twice a Day Exfoliator 3 by Clinique (200mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin and acne prone skin; a simple way to exfoliate skin
Cons: Must use cotton balls instead of cotton pads to apply toner otherwise ineffective; has an overwhelming smell of alcohol; quite drying for the face
Repurchase? No. I originally purchased this for myself, but it was too drying for my face so I gave it to hubby, and I refuse to use so much alcohol on my face.

Step Four: Apply Serum

Water Bank Essence by Laneige (60mL)

Pros: Absorbs very quickly and does not feel sticky at all; leaves my skin feeling silky soft and smooth even just after one use; very hydrating; has a very faint scent; comes in a nice blue glass bottle
Cons: Slightly pricey
Repurchase? Yes

Drops of Youth by The Body Shop (30mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin and acne prone skin; absorbs very quickly; made skin smoother as it was originally very bumpy from the acne scars; one bottle lasts quite long as only one drop is used every time; comes in a small glass bottle with a pasteur pipette/dropper
Cons: Absorbs too quickly and one drop does not seem to be enough if you do not apply it wisely; very expensive for just 30mL
Repurchase? Yes, this is our fourth bottle already! I usually stock up on them when they're on sale or during any special offers!

Aquamarinal 1032 Serum by Leader Clinic (45mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin and acne prone skin; pigment free; artificial fragrance free; no scent; very moisturising
Cons: Always sold out at the website
Repurchase? Yes, this is our fourth bottle already! I usually stock up on them just in case they're out of stock at the shop!

Step Five: Apply Eye Cream

Advanced Extra-Firming Eye Contour Cream by Clarins (20mL)

Pros: Moisturising yet not greasy; does not cause milia; suitable for applying under makeup; my fine lines have not worsened although not completely gone; hygienic bottle with a pump dispenser
Cons: Did not help with dark eye circles
Repurchase? Maybe

Midnight Recovery Eye by Kiehl's (15mL)

Pros: Light and not greasy; hygienic tube; helps lighten dark eye circles; does not cause milia; contains no parabens/fragrance/mineral oil/silicones
Cons: Not moisturising enough if ladies have to apply it under makeup
Repurchase? No, because hubby doesn't use eye cream anymore, and because it didn't work for me (Genie).

Step Six: Apply Day Cream or Night Cream

Multi-Active Day Early Wrinkle Correction Cream-Gel by Clarins (50mL)

Pros: Very moisturising but not greasy; has a nice scent though may be too strong for some; absorbs quite quickly so does not leave a sticky feeling to the face; suitable for normal to combination skin
Cons: Quite expensive
Repurchase? Maybe, but only for use in the winter.

Multi-Active Night Youth Recovery Cream by Clarins (50mL)

Pros: Very moisturising but not greasy; has a scent but not as strong as the day cream; absorbs quite quickly; suitable for normal to combination skin
Cons: Quite expensive
Repurchase? Maybe, but only for use in the winter.

Biopure Reoxygen Intense Cream by Ericson Laboratoire

Pros: Suitable for normal, dry, and sensitive skin; smells fruity; not too thick so can be used as both day and night cream; hydrating; non-greasy; does not leave a sticky feeling after application; absorbs very quickly; leaves skin radiant and moisturised
Cons: Very expensive
Repurchase? No, it is too expensive

Le Weekend de Chanel by Chanel (50mL)
This product is part of the skincare trilogy by Chanel - the other products are Le Jour de Chanel and La Nuit de Chanel. The Le Weekend de Chanel enhances renewal and replenishes hydration to give skin a much-needed weekend break. Combined with relaxing Rose Water, a gentle Glycolic Acid Complex is gradually released for ideal exfoliation and lasting moisture. Skin is softer and more luminous for the week ahead. During the weekend, apply morning and evening to the entire face and neck, avoiding the eye area. Use in place of your usual serum and moisturiser, and always follow with sun protection in the daytime. Apply two days in a row to intensify the benefits.

Pros: Won't feel guilty for being lazy in the weekends; absorbs very quickly; surprisingly hydrating although it feels quite light; not greasy or sticky; has a nice flower scent; leaves skin feeling soft; nice design
Cons: Quite expensive
Repurchase? Maybe

Aquamarinal 1032 Lotion by Leader Clinic (150mL)

Pros: Suitable for sensitive skin and acne prone skin; pigment free; artificial fragrance free; no scent; very light yet hydrates very well; helps balance skin's equilibrium; one bottle lasts very long; very cheap for such a big bottle (HK$165 original price; HK$119 on sale price)
Cons: Always sold out at the website
Repurchase? Yes, this is our second bottle already! A bottle goes a long way, so we haven't had to repurchase very often.

Products used in a home facial...

Peeling or Exfoliator

Multiberry Yogurt Peeling Gel by Laneige (120mL)

Pros: Suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin; very gentle on the skin; skin feels smoother and softer after use; can use it as a peeling mask if you have oily and acne prone skin; nice strawberry scent
Cons: More of a gentle exfoliator rather than a peeling
Repurchase? Yes. I used to use the Strawberry Yogurt Peeling Gel but that has been discontinued and has been replaced with the Multiberry one, which I find to be gentler than its predecessor.

Maximum Radiance Exfoliating Gel by Chanel (75mL)

Pros: Granules are very fine; not abrasive to the skin; leaves skin very soft and smooth; does not cause breakouts; has a nice scent
Cons: Slightly hard to wash off; quite pricey
Repurchase? Yes

Pore Cleansing Mask

Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque by Kiehl's (142g)

Pros: Effectively "brings out" blackheads, excess oils, and dirt to the top layer of the skin so that you can easily remove them; some people use it as a spot treatment for acne 
Cons: Slightly drying to the skin but can be easily resolved by using moisturising products after application; has a tingling sensation when applied to the skin
Repurchase? Yes. I have tried other pore cleansing masks from other brands, but none were as effective as this one.

Pore Extractor

Nose Pore Pack by Bioré (10 strips)

Pros: Satisfaction when seeing the pores being extracted from the nose (works better on hubby's nose); convenient and easy to use
Cons: Damages the skin; enlarges the pores; not the entire blackhead is extracted; can be quite painful when peeling the strip off the nose
Repurchase? Yes, but we don't use them very often.

Face Mask

Firming Sleeping Pack by Laneige (50mL)

After you mix the gel, it will go back to its normal shape after a few seconds ~ miraculous!

Pros: Suitable for all skin types; a leave-on mask and does not require washing off until morning; convenient; skin is very hydrated and radiant in the morning; comes with a spatula for hygiene purposes; has a slight scent; very easy to apply
Cons: Suggested to apply 30 minutes before bedtime; if apply too much, will feel sticky; absorbs more slowly than the Water Sleeping Pack
Repurchase? Maybe

Other products:

Face Mist

Reskin Solution Mist by Reskin (60mL)

Pros: Suitable for all skin types; particles are very small so can be misted onto face before and after makeup; absorbs into skin instantly; fragrance-free
Cons: Not moisturising enough
Repurchase? No

Snail Repair Hydro Mist by Mizon (120mL)

Pros: Suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin; very moisturising; can be used as a toner as well as a mist; can be used under or on top of makeup; has a nice scent
Cons: Always out of stock at the website
Repurchase? Yes, this is my third bottle already!


Mien Aqua UV Protection SPF50 by YANYIM (50mL)

Pros: Suitable for all types of skin, but it is especially made for sensitive skin; milky in colour but the texture is like water; absorbs instantly; does not feel sticky or greasy unlike other sunscreens; skin feels very smooth after application; not drying for the skin; does not leave any white residue unlike other sunscreens; can apply under makeup
Cons: Has the typical sunscreen scent
Repurchase? Yes

Lip Balm

Lip Care Balm by Jurlique (15mL)

Pros: Conditions and softens the lips; helps get rid of flaky and chapped lips; faint scent of beeswax; can be used as a lip mask
Cons: No applicator on the tube; quite difficult to squeeze the balm out of the hard metal tube; quite expensive
Repurchase? Yes, I already bought a new one just in case they run out of stock again!
Fore more information on this product, please check out my The Dry Months of the Year... post.

Hydrating Conditioning Lip Balm by Chanel (3mL)

Pros: Not sticky; moisturising; slight flower scent; posh packaging; does not irritate or worsen flaky and chapped lips
Cons: Quite expensive; may need to apply a few layers
Repurchase? Yes, this is my second one already!

These are the products that hubby and I are both currently using. I hope these suggestions will help you in finding the right products for you. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below!

Hope you enjoyed reading, and have a nice day!