We’ve said this again and again — lots of beauty items come through our office, and we’re always excited (and deeply grateful) to be able to try them all. And to tell you about it, of course. We know, the current climate of COVID-19 fears doesn’t exactly inspire us to shop to our hearts’ content, but if you’ve been in a restless (read: bored) #WFH situation that doesn’t seem to see an end, maybe take the time to properly care for your skin, or even experiment with new makeup items for when you do get out of the house. Weekends exist, right? From skincare to makeup, here’s everything we tried and loved this month:
ESSENCE — Lancôme Clarifique Dual Essence
“I’m always fond of wearing makeup everyday so keeping my skincare game on point, especially at night, is my only bet at maintaining my clear skin. Recently, I came across Lancôme’s Clarifique Dual Essence and I thought that it was just like any other product that came in the office — but that’s where I was wrong. In fact, I’ve been using the toner everyday for the past 2 weeks and I loved how it helped rid my skin of impurities even after cleansing my face — you’d notice some residue on the cotton pad after a few swipes. Also, it didn’t feel oily or heavy on my skin and I found that my skin was a little more soft and supple after each use! The other unique feature about this product is also its design-patented whisk. Found inside of the bottle, the whisk works to blend the French Beech Bud extract and Grapeseed oil, which then generates fresh micro-bubbles for the perfect sensorial experience. Though it may be somewhat similar to SK-II’s Facial Treatment Essence, this essence actually feels more exfoliating and gives a more hydrating, dewy finish as compared to the former. Either way, the both essences are still different and have equally good qualities of their own.” — Shazrina, Writer
$140, available at Lancôme.
SERUM — YSL Pure Shots Night Reboot Serum
“We’ve talked about the Pure Shots range here, but since that initial review, I’ve gone on to use the Night Reboot Serum a little longer — to my skin’s great benefit! I’ve earlier mentioned the product’s standouts: first, the bi-phase formula of glycolic acid with moisturising oils and moonlight cactus flower, and then, its light, watery texture, which does take some getting used to. Still, what really sealed the deal over time was the gentle exfoliating properties of the glycolic acid. This ingredient helps to gently lift away dead skin cells and impurities from my skin’s surface, but what’s especially great is that the overall formula didn’t cause any redness or skin irritation, so you really needn’t be afraid of it. Over time, I noticed clearer skin that’s much more balanced, less prone to breakouts, and a brighter complexion.” — Amelia, Deputy Editor
$139, available at TANGS.
FACE MASK — Sand & Sky Australian Emu Apple Super Bounce Mask
“This came to my desk as part of Sephora’s Spring launches, which we’ll talk about in an upcoming article, but I like this so much I had to include it here. Most people recognise Sand & Sky for their pink clay mask, but this Super Bounce Mask fares really well if you’re looking for, well, bouncy and well-hydrated skin. Its jelly-like texture surprised me at first, and I’d say it felt weird to slather the goopy formula on my face. It felt like slime, the kind that “kids these days” like to play with. However, that helpful silicone paddle brush it comes with keeps things tame and hygienic; you leave it on for about 15 minutes for your skin to slurp up the goodness, then wash it off. The biggest difference comes after. Not kidding when I say that there was an immediate plumping effect — no tightness, just like my skin’s very hydrated. What’s even better was that the firmness lasted till morning, and the entire day after, which I found was rare for a wash-off formula. Get. It.” — Amelia, Deputy Editor
$90, available at Sephora.
SHEET MASK — MediHeal TeaTree Care Solution Essential Mask
“Swayed by the brand ambassadors (BTS) of MediHeal, I decided to try their TeaTree Care Solution Essential Mask which is formulated with tea tree leaf oil, pine needle and portulaca oleracea extracts. I am not normally a facial mask sort of person but after two tries, I was sold. Being a person with combination type skin, the mask actually helped to control sebum secretion especially in my oily T-zone area. My nose area no longer feels as oily as it did before! Plus, I like that it also leaves my skin feeling clean and refreshed after use.” — Jasmine Ng, Writer
$3.90, available at Watsons.
EYE PALETTE — innisfree Cherry Blossom Eyeshadow Palette
“When I first saw this palette, I immediately knew I had to have it. With a good mix of matte and shimmery shades, they all blend well and are buildable, and with 9 shades reminiscent of a cherry blossom tree, it’s hard to find a reason NOT to use it. I’m using it today, and it hasn’t creased so far! The pigment’s pretty good when applied with your finger, though definitely more sheer when with a brush, with some understandable fallout. A good day-to-night palette in my opinion, since you can go from a more natural, sheer pink day look to a smokier, shimmery brown look — all in one compact palette.” — Natalie, Writer
$39, available at innisfree stores from March.
BROWS — Benefit Cosmetics 24-Hr Brow Setter Invisible Brow Gel
“I’m usually extremely low-maintenance when it comes to my brows, i.e., I do absolutely nothing. The absolute most I tend to use is brow gel, but I’ve found that most clear brow gels never really do much for me. Benefit’s 24-Hour Brow Setter, on the other hand, actually lasts literally all day and gives volume and a refreshing neatness to my brows. The gel is thin enough to not feel sticky upon application, and dries fairly quickly. It doesn’t leave any shine and helps my brows look naturally fluffy.” — Natalie, Writer
$44, available at Sephora.
HIGHLIGHTER — Cle Cosmetics Essence Moonlighter Cushion in Copper Rose
“For someone who’s very particular when it comes to highlighters, this newcomer surprisingly pulled all the stops for me. In general, there are two types of highlighters that exist: the one that strobes across your cheekbone, blinding anyone and everyone in sight, and those that are more alluring and subtle. Obviously, I prefer the latter and a good example would be Cle Cosmetics’ Essence Moonlighter Cushion — and mind you, I rarely use highlighting cushions. Copper Rose, at first, looked a little too dark, but upon application, the highlighter came with a beautiful pearlescent finish that gave a nice, iridescent sheen. It’s also really lightweight and buildable so you can apply as much as your heart desires without looking like the Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz.” — Shaz
USD30, available at clecosmetics.com.
LIPSTICK — YSL Rouge Volupte Rock’N Shine in 2 Cacao Bounce
“I truly didn’t mean to tout two YSL items in the same article, but I found their latest Rouge Volupte Rock’N Shine being my go-to lipstick this month. Granted, I’m constantly rotating between the many lip products we receive, but this formula stands out for its shiny finish and sheer but pigmented-enough formula, while still supplying my dry lips with enough hydration to last the day. I don’t need to prep my lips with lip balm, and yet the shade looks perfectly filled in! Also, shade No.2 in Cacao Bounce is a beautiful lustrous chocolate brown that’s in between minimalist nude and edgy. I can keep the rest of my face completely neutral but look like I put in all the effort!” — Amelia, Deputy Editor
LIP GLOSS — Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer in Hot Chocolit
“Am I a little obsessed with brown this season? Maybe… As far as Fenty’s Gloss Bombs go, you can’t really go wrong. While heavier than most glosses, I’d say it makes up for it with a truly natural yet flattering lip-plumping effect. You know, that gorgeous pout that IG filters try to mimic? That can happen IRL too in a warm sheer brown shade (with the tiniest specks of glitter) that’s truly my new favourite shade in the range, even surpassing the original peachy glow. Other than the lasting glossy sheen, you’ll also have the yummiest tropical scent lingering on your lips.” — Amelia, Deputy Editor
$32, available at Sephora.