Friday, April 10, 2015

Tester Korea Mask Haul

After a successful RoseRose haul, I found myself needing more masks. . . and more varieties of them! I had a fair number of sheet masks but I wanted more options and thought another wash-off, some more sleeping packs. . . why not? After shopping around, I decided to try out Tester Korea for this haul.  They do charge for shipping as well but I find their pricing to be reasonable.  They don't seem to have the crazy deals or crazy selection that RoseRose has but they definitely stock a few things that I really wanted to try that either RoseRose didn't have or that were cheaper through TK.

Shipping:  I placed this order on February 15 and it was delivered March 13.  There was a delay in processing the order due to the Korean New Year so that accounts for some of that time. . . but really, under one month in shipping is not bad in my k-shopping experience.  Further, this was held by customs for a few days although there were no customs charges :)

Please note:  for these reviews, the pricing is in Korean Won.  For your reference 1000 won = approximately $1 US.  Tester Korea is awesome because they keep the current exchange rate at the top of their page. . . if only they also converted to Canadian dollars!

Here's a first look:

In this shot, you can see a few of the main reasons for this haul:  my Etude House Blending Sleeping Spoons (2 each in Green Tea, Seaweed and Rosehip).  I also picked up Laneige's Water Sleeping Pack since I'm suddenly into sleeping packs and a 4-pack of Honey Wash-Off Packs from Etude House.

Etude House Blending Sleeping Spoons (1050 won each at the time - 1500 won now)

I had tried the Green Tea version of this product in a Memebox and loved it.  For those who don't know, sleeping packs or sleeping masks are used over top of your nighttime skincare.  They are thicker and help to seal in moisture as well as the benefits of your skin creams, etc.  That's in addition to the benefits that they promise as well.  At first, I was concerned that a product like this would break me out like nobody's business but after that first spoon (which lasted through 3 applications - I find I can stretch them to 4 if I want since there's a surprising amount of product in them), I was convinced.  I picked up two of the Green Tea (clear and moist) spoons and they are still my faves.  I also tried two of the Seaweed (smooth and moist) and, while I like the results, wasn't as crazy about the scent.  The Rosehip (bright and moist) was probably my least favourite.  While the scent was a little perfumy, I didn't hate it. . . but I didn't find they made my skin as happy as the other two.  I've already ordered more spoons!

Laneige Water Sleeping Pack (25000 won at the time - 20000 won now)

This sleeping pack promises moisture and a soothing, relaxing scent.  They actually suggest massaging this over your skin to calm yourself before bed.  I'm not sure how much I find the scent to be soothing - this is pretty lightly scented which works for me.  I also enjoy the light texture in contrast to the creaminess of the spoons.  I don't need heavy creams often with my combo-skin so this is just right.  I wake up with fresh-looking, dewy skin and I love that :)  This wasn't a cheap purchase but a little bit of this goes a long way so it should last for a while.

Etude House Honey Wash-Off Pack (2450 won)

This is a 4-pack of wash-off masks made with honey.  I liked trying out the yogurt wash-off masks I had gotten in the Winter Masks Memebox and also have heard great things about honey products so I thought these sounded neat.  I will preface this by saying I use these in the bath. . . and wouldn't use them any other way since they are a pain to wash off! They are sticky and require some effort to rinse completely clean (I guess that's the honey).  This includes 4 different varieties:  ginseng, red ginseng, ginger and cactus.  Thus far, I have tried two:  the red ginseng had a pretty strong scent that I didn't love, and the ginger was lovely (but I love ginger!).  Again, these hold quite a bit of product and I can make each last two uses (three if I really wanted to).  My skin feels smoother after using these and a bit moisturized but I don't find that they are a miracle or anything. . . at least not enough of one to make washing them off worth it.  I probably wouldn't buy these again but I'm glad I tried them.

Clockwise from top:  Skinfood's Black Sugar Wash-Off Mask (the other main reason for this haul), Innisfree's Jeju Sudachi Soothing Mask, Etude House's Skin Note Deep Moisturizing Hydrogel Mask in Brightening Up! and Calming and Relaxing, Skinfood Peach Sake Pore Essence Mask Sheet (x2), Innisfree It's Real Squeeze Mask in Bija (x3), and Etude House I Need You Mask Sheets in Aloe (x2), Pearl (x2) and Lemon (x2)

Skinfood Black Sugar Wash-Off Mask (5390 won)

This is awesome! I had heard good reviews about this one and needed to try it out.  It's a sugar scrub mask which means that it exfoliates well.  It also smells absolutely delicious - lemony and sweet.  This gets rubbed over clean skin and then can sit on it for a while before rinsing clean.  It rinses pretty easily too and doesn't leave my skin sticky like the honey masks.  I would totally buy this again or try out some of their other flavours.  It leaves my skin smooth, soft and bright.

Innisfree Jeju Sudachi Soothing Mask (7000 won at the time - 8000 won now)

So I got into Jeju products after researching and trying out the products in my From Jeju Memebox Value Set.  Check out that review if you like - or just google Jeju Island.  Can I go there? So pretty! Anyway, I liked the idea of a soothing mask to cool and calm fatigued skin.  That's the kind of mask I can really get behind.  This one smells so good - citrusy and lovely.  It also has a texture a bit like runny jell-o and really does feel soothing and cooling on my face.

Etude House Skin Note Deep Moisturizing Hydrogel Mask (1750 won each at the time - 2500 won now)

I had never tried a hydrogel mask before so thought I'd give these a shot as they're pretty reasonable for this type of mask.  So far I have used the "Calming and Relaxing" version which is made with aloe and glacier water.  The hydrogel is definitely an odd texture to get used to - kind of like plastering thicker jell-o on your face - but it did soothe and calm my skin.  It felt fresh and cool.  That said, the hydrogel mask itself is in two pieces and I had to keep adjusting them as they slid around on my face a little.  I'm saving the other one for a special pampering session :)

Skinfood Peach Sake Pore Essence Sheet (1400 won each at the time - 2000 won now)

Skinfood's Peach Sake products are recommended for oily and acne-prone skin (which I sometimes have) so I picked these up to have an alternative to my Benton Snail-Bee Masks.  OMG these smell so good.  Like so much better than the snail bee ones! I'm not sure they're quite as fantastic as the Bentons in terms of effect but I do like them and want to try more from this line.

Innisfree It's Real Squeeze Mask in Bija (665 won each at the time - 950 won now)

On the other hand, the It's Real Squeeze mask in "Bija" is also supposed to be great for acne-prone skin.  While it also smells pleasant and is generally moisturizing and fine, I didn't see a whole lot of results in comparison to either the Benton Snail-Bee mask or the Skinfood Peach Sake version.  It's a fine mask with lots of essence but I'm not sure this particular version lives up to its promises.  There are a lot of other flavours to try though, promising a variety of other effects.

Etude House I Need You, Mask Sheets (700 won each at the time - 1000 won now)

I keep thinking I really like Etude House masks and then not being as impressed by them as I want to be.  They are, again, a fine mask with a suitable amount of essence and available in a variety of types but I always find them somewhat underwhelming.  Maybe I hype them up too much in my mind, thinking that they're the best, before I use them? I do like the variety and the price is good so I will keep purchasing them, I'm sure.   I should just try to remember that they're a regular mask - not an HG product for me.  Anyway, I picked up two of the Aloe masks for Soothing Relief and liked them - but I always like a good Aloe mask.  I also got two Pearl masks for Bright Complexion and they were okay but I'm not sure that they brightened much.  After quite liking the lemon brightening mask from Velieve, I picked up two of these Lemon masks for Tone Brightening. . . and they were also okay.  In short, meh. . . but nice enough.

Tester Korea also sent me a bunch of samples:  Holika Holika Skin and Good Cera Cream, Nature Republic Super Origin Waterproof BB Cream, Nature Republic Snail Solution Foam Cleanser, Holika Holika Make-up Starter, Nature Republic Super Aqua Max Combination Watery Cream, and Skinfood Watery Berry Serum (clockwise from left)

I won't review these in detail but here are some general thoughts:
  • The Skin and Good Cera Cream has the strangest name! It was also a little thick for me but someone with dryer skin (or combo-dry) might like it more.
  • The Nature Republic BB Cream was a nice surprise and a decent colour for me.
  • I also really liked their Snail Foam Cleanser and have ordered some :)
  • The Make-up Starter was. . . um. . . strange? I don't really get why I need a special pad to smooth over my face prior to make-up when I have enough products to prep my skin.  It felt wasteful.
  • The Watery Cream was my least fave Nature Republic product out of these samples but it was still pretty nice.  I should try more of their products.
  • The Watery Berry Serum was disappointing.  It smelled nice and I usually like Skinfood but it was wholly inappropriate for my skin type and gave me a little break out (thankfully I had some sheet masks for troubled skin to solve the problem!).
Overall, I was really happy with most of my purchases from TK and had a great first shopping experience with them.  I've already placed a second order :)

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