Posts

K-Beauty Review: Son & Park Beauty Water

Few K-beauty products are as hyped about as Son & Park’s Beauty Water. The clear toner in a sleek bottle has been touted as a magical toner, or cleansing water, that cleanses, soothes, and freshens the skin. The self-proclaimed “smart cleansing liquid” claims to exfoliate and moisturize skin at once, and make people “instantly feel how young and healthy your skin is.” The Son & Park Beauty Water contains extracts from orange fruit, papaya, willow bark, lavender, rose, bergamot, olive oil, and other naturally hydrating, brightening, and cleansing sources.

It’s a pretty straightforward product, as it’s essentially a really well-marketed toner with a key difference: toners typically balance pH that gets stripped from skin while cleansing while beauty water is more about refreshing the skin overall. The Son & Park Beauty Water is meant to help tidy up your face by refreshing your skin in one easy step rather than keeping around both a toner and an exfoliant. It styles itself as a primer of sorts for other products, and it does seem to help soothe the skin so that it is more absorbent.


Also on Kultscene: K-Beauty Review: Neogen Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling Wine

Pros

I really like the simplicity of it. The bottle is aesthetically pleasing, very modern looking, and clean cut. The actual solution itself is clear. It looks like water, and has a subtle, minty-citrusy scent. Pour a tiny bit onto a cotton pad, wipe it over your skin, and it actually lives up to it’s claims. Not that the Beauty Water is magical or anything, but my skin did feel smoother and more supple once I used it. I also noticed visible reduction in redness. (There was a bit of tingling the first time I tried it, but the second time I didn’t notice anything).

I decided to try it out to remove makeup, since people rave about the Beauty Water’s ability to remove grime with a single swipe. I wasn’t brave enough to try it out as a full cleanser, so put some lipstick and eyeshadows on my arm and did a quick eyeliner-mascara duo on one eye. And I was incredibly impressed. Not only did one little dab of the Beauty Water on a cotton pad clean the makeup on my arm, but it was also enough to clean my eye makeup. (Sorry– I accidentally deleted the photos!) Without any irritation or rubbing! As someone with major dry eyes, this is really important to me. I don’t think I’ve ever had a smoother all around cleanser. (That said, I’ve avoided micellar waters in the past and this has changed my mind for sure. If you have any favorites, leave a comment and I’ll check it out!)

Cons

I tend to use a witch hazel astringent as my toner, which is definitely stronger than this. The Beauty Water did exactly what it said, but I really like something that would make my face feel not only cleansed and smoothed, but also balanced. I still felt a bit greasy after I used it mid-day as a refresher, which isn’t really ideal, but that’s part of the Beauty Water’s properties, since it’s purpose is to hydrate whereas witch hazel tends to dry.

It’s important to note that the Beauty Water is particularly expensive for K-beauty, and usually is sold for anywhere between $20-35 USD. (I got it as a courtesy from Style Korean, where it’s sold for about $33.50.) That’s definitely a negative, but at the same time each use requires very little product and it almost entirely is worth the hype so I understand why people are willing to shell that out and it’s something I’m going to enjoy incorporating into my routine.


Also on Kultscene: K-Beauty Review: Heimish All Clean Balm

Overall Thoughts

It’s a simple product and does what it says. I wouldn’t necessarily suggest the Son & Park Beauty Water as a primary toner for people with incredibly oily skin, since it doesn’t seem to really help reduce oiliness. But if you’re looking for a product that will clean your skin and make it immediately feel smoother and hydrated, this is for you.

Did you try Son & Park’s Beauty Water? What did you think about it? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

The sample item was provided by Style Korean, but all reviews are based on the tester’s individual opinions. Email contact@Kultscene.com for more details relating to sponsoring products and posts.

2016 Gift Guide For Lovers of K-Pop, K-Drama, & K-Beauty

KultScene 2016 Holiday gift guide feat TWICE!It seems like the holiday season already began as far back as September, but for many of KultScene’s readers it kicks off in earnest on Thanksgiving day when the Black Friday sales jump into action in the US (and much of the rest of the world!) Every year, we’ve greeted the busiest shopping season of the year with our K-pop-oriented gift guide and once again we’ve put our heads together and come up with some great ideas.

Albums and K-pop swag may be a lot of fun (all the lightsticks and posters!!) for the music fans, and you may be tempted to see if that drama you know they love is available on Amazon, but there’s so much more out there! Along with our recommendations, we’re offering a few discounts and giveaways throughout the next month, so make sure to check back throughout the holiday season!

Scroll below to see our rotating giveaways. Currently we’re giving away a Korea Curated Box, so scroll down to enter!

For The Masking Fiend

There’s a lot of K-beauty-oriented subscription boxes out there (and on this gift guide), but Piibu Subscription Box is the answer to every masker’s dreams. If you know someone who has ever tried the 10 masks in 10 days challenge, Piibu’s box filled with different masks is perfect for that. The monthly subscription box comes with a variety of masks from different Korean brands.

Price: $19-108, depending on the subscription plan

Piibu is offering KultScene readers a chance to win a box, so enter below (begins at midnight 11/24). However, this is only available for those in the US, sorry!

Update: Thanks to everyone who entered our Piibu giveaway! Congratulations Naomi Pangelinan for winning!

For People Who Love Wearing Their Fandom Hearts on Literal Sleeves

Everyone loves T-shirts, right? TeePublic gives artists an opportunity to sell their designs for $20, and there are some really great K-pop themed ones available through the outlet so just dig around a bit. We’re fans of designs by sittinginclover and dekoreate, but there’s a lot more K-related items on the site. The site is called TEEPublic, but you can also get the designs on a variety of items, like cell phone cases and mugs!

sittinginclover Super Junior-inspired "Oppa" Tee

Price: Tees for $20

For the K-pop Inept

Just in case someone in your life is completely lacking all knowledge of Korea’s music industry, Woosung Kang’s recently released The KPop Dictionary is probably a good place to start. Or, you know, take a look at our other fact-finding suggestions.

K-Pop Dictionary

Price: $6 for Kindle version, $13 for paperback copy


Also on KultScene: 2015 Gift Guide For Fans Of Korean Pop Culture

For The Skin Tone Perfectionist

For some people, sunscreen is all you need before leaving the house. For others, you better have your primer, foundation, powder, and setting spray. Most of us are somewhere in between. Missha makes it pretty easy, with their BB Boomer primer setting things up as a great base for whatever you’re dressing your face up with. (Plus, Alexis swears by their Time Revolution Essence!). Everything on Missha’s site is 30% OFF between Dec. 1-27 and there’s a lot of free gifts, including sheet masks and samples of some of their Time Revolution products.

Make sure to enter our Missha X KultScene giveaway! We’re giving three winners a gift set worth $90 featuring the BB Boomer, Missha’s Time Revolution Night Repair Science Activator AmpouleTime Revolution The First Treatment Essence. However, only U.S. residents can participate since the prizes must be sent to an address within the country.

misha-bb-boomer-kultscene

Price: Regular $15, but on sale for $9

Thanks to everyone who entered our Missha giveaway! The winners have been notified.

For The Lipstick Loving EXO-Ls

Apparently, Sephora has shades in their Rouge Cream Lipstick line that sound suspiciously like they were named after songs by EXO, like “Call Me Baby” and “Lucky One.” It may or may not be related, but it’s a nice little token with an inside joke for anyone who wants a piece of K-pop in their makeup bag. [Let KultScene know if you find any other K-pop connections at Sephora!]

Sephora Lucky One EXO lipstick KultScene

Lucky One

Price: $12.50 each

For The Lipstick Loving Wino

No, I don’t mean a fan of WINNER (shout out to Inner Circle!). Style Korean has a lot of really cute products, but our favorite is their Labiotte Wine Tints. Or just buy them some soju or plum wine!

 

Price: $9 each

For The K-pop Fan Always Losing Their Headphones

Psy apparently tested these adorable brightly colored earbuds from Soul Electronics. So if that celebrity endorsement matters to you, here you go! They come in a variety of different neon hues so can suit just about anyone’s taste. (And maybe buy an album or two with them?)

kpop_product_shot_pink

Price: $50

For The K-Beauty Confused

What the heck is the 10 step solution? If your giftee, or yourself, are befuddled by the nuances of K-beauty skincare, the BomiBox is the perfect place to begin. Each box comes with eight full or deluxe sized Korean beauty products, ensuring that you’ll have a diverse range of items to peruse as you dig further into K-beauty.

Bomibox KultScene

Price: $37, but if you use the code KULTSCENE you get $2 off each order you make. For life!

Thank you everyone for entering and congratulations, Briana Fortunato!


Also on KultScene: 2014 K-Pop Inspired Gift-Giving Guide

For The Cuddle Buddy

Zombie Mamma makes some adorable K-pop plushies, specialized upon request. So if you know someone who wants to be able to brag about sharing a bed with their favorite Korean star… Here’s your chance! Contact Zombie Mamma through her Facebook page.

Zombie Mamma K-pop plushies

Price: Prices range from $50-$60, depending on how elaborate you want to get with the hair, outfit, etc.

For The Burgeoning Anthropologist

K-beauty and K-pop is good and all, but is that really what Korea’s all about? Definitely not! Korea Curated and Inspire Me Korea are two different subscription boxes that bring a little bit of Korean culture straight to your front door.

Korea Curated offers subscription boxes featuring Korean items that aren’t typically sold outside of Korea. Each month’s box can feature anything and everything, filled with things such as Korean snacks, toys, artwork, socks, craft projects, and more. (Plus it’s run out of Korea by a married couple, Cory and Marie, which you know it’s filled with love!) If you use the code KULTSCENE, you’ll get 20% off your first order.

Korea Curated boxes KultScene gift guide

Price: $43-75, depending on the size of the box.

Inspire Me Korea, on the other hand, offers the most diverse Korean subscription boxes around with their monthly culture boxes geared to both men and women, plus they also feature a beauty box. It’s UK based, but don’t worry, they ship their boxes around the world. If you use the code KULTSCENE you can get 10% off your first order.

Inspire Me Korea Box KultScene Gift Guide

Price: £13.99-40 (about $18-100 USD), depending on the subscription

a Rafflecopter giveaway

For The Foodie

Watched Let’s Eat or Drinking Alone? There’s so much food, how can you not want to try some Korean food firsthand? We spoke to the women who started Crazy Korean Cooking years ago, but they have these DIY kits that we think would be a great addition to any kitchen pantry.

They also have a great option to get meals shipped directly to your door , and if you use the code KULTSCENE you can get 25% off your first order. Or, if you’re looking for something more stocking-sized, there’s also the A Very Crazy Korean Christmas Gift set filled with some fun items, ranging from food to kitchen gloves. (Literally!) If you’re interested in that, use the code KULTCRAZY to get 10% off. Both codes expire Dec. 18, so decide which delicious looking foodstuff you want soon!

DIY Crazy Korean Cooking

Price: $19-85

What’s your ideal holiday gift, either for yourself or for others? Share your thoughts (and pictures of your holiday shopping!) about this article in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

K-Beauty review: Caolion Premium Hot & Cool Pore Pack Duo

Caolion Premium Hot & Cool Pore Pack Duo

There I was, strolling around Sephora while picking up my long-awaited birthday present (the Marc Jacobs eyeliner is a game changer!) when I happened to notice the Caolion Premium Hot & Cool Pore Pack Duo. With pretty large pores on my nose, which was once dubbed a “strawberry nose” by a blunt facialist, I’m always looking for new, size-reducing items. I usually doubt their efficiency but I can’t help but be drawn in by their promises of blackhead-clearing perfection. I chose to try this one out since it gave me a two-in-one chance to try products I’ve heard good things about, and it was only $30.

I decided to try it out later that night. Upon first glance, I was a bit disappointed that that the step one pack (aka Blackhead Steam Pore Pack to clarify pores and refine complexion) seemed to be a grainy exfoliating mask, which was supposed to be rubbed around first and then left to sit. Since I like to keep my beauty steps separate (I tend to find two-in-one items usually don’t do either of the things the promise…), I was a bit wary but the overall feel of it wasn’t as weird as I thought. The second, considerably thinner, pack (aka Pore Original Pack with calming and cooling effects) was more like a typical clay mask but once I put it on it seemed to disappear from my face after about 15 minutes, as if my skin was absorbing its moisture.

 


Also on KultScene: Introduction To Korean Masks: 10 Masks In 10 Days

Pros

I really did feel that my pores looked visibly smaller immediately after, plus my face actually looked cleaner, likely because I had just scoured off a layer or three of my skin.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Cons

BEWARE. The burning sensation was a bit much and I got pretty red immediately after using it. I made the error of thinking that if it says “pack,” it’s a mask for my whole face. Apparently that was silly on my part, since the Hot Pack seemed to literally set my face on fire. According to our resident makeup crazed lady, Tammie, that’s precisely how it was supposed to feel but even so… I had actual tears running down my face since it was so intense. It felt like I had just rubbed hot peppers all over my skin. That said, the product overall seemed to work as promised and the cooling sensation of the second step, after burning also a bit, did make my skin feel and look great. So… Yea. Be wary, but the results are worth it.

Also, step two smelled a lot like my niece’s playdoh.


Also on KultScene: Cosmetic Hallyu: Glow Recipe Helps Understand Korean Skin Care

Overall

I definitely am still going to look for a new clay mask with a focus on tightening my overall face, since that was what I was kind of hoping this would be, but I’m definitely going to add the Caolion Pack Duo into my regular skincare routine, particular for my problem eras. My skin looked nearly flawless the next day! I spent a lot of time outside in the heat and humidity of New York City the next day so my pores appear to have gotten a bit larger, but I’m intrigued to see how this product does in the winter. While it did it’s job, the fiery sensation was off-putting. Here’s to finding something that does the job without making me cry!

Have you tried the Caolion Pore Pack Duo? What other K-beauty products would you like us to review? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

This review was not sponsored by Caolion or Sephora but KultScene is always looking for affiliate and sponsors, particularly for product reviews. Email contact@Kultscene.com for more details 

Celebrate KultScene’s 2nd Anniversary With This K-Beauty Giveaway

Untitled design (10)In 2014, a few friends put their heads together and thought up what we now know as KultScene. To celebrate our second anniversary on May 19, we’ve put together a celebratory slew of giveaways to thank our readers for sticking with us. And by slew, we mean seven giveaways; one per day leading up to our anniversary! We launched our four giveaways earlier this week, so now it’s time for one featuring the biggest trend coming out of Korea today, K-Beauty. (And if you haven’t heard, we’re giving away a SnackFever box, a copy of BTS’s latest album, a few cute t-shirts from KORE Limited, a pair of adorable bracelets from BE.ARUM, turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree.)

Tonight, we’re offering you the chance to improve your already beautiful looks! (If that’s possible. The latest anniversary giveaway is sponsored by the beauty brand Glow Recipe! All of Glow Recipe’s products are curated with care from South Korea to make sure that you’re not putting anything harmful on your skin. We have a set that includes Yuripibu Artichoke Power Essence and Lindsay COOL (tea-tree) Modeling Mask) for your winning pleasure.

To enter, just follow KultScene on our social media accounts using the plugin below. However, because of shipping concerns, this giveaway is only open to readers in the United States and its territories. The winner will be chosen randomly and will be announced on May 20 at midnight EST through our Facebook and Twitter, so make sure to check back.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
We want to thank Glow Recipe for sponsoring the giveaway, so check out their site, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see all of the fun things they’re picking with love for the site.

Also be sure to tell us what your favorite Korean beauty products are, subscribe to the site, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter,Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

K-Beauty Review: The Snow Queen Enzyme Powder Wash & Wash Up Deep Clean Pore Glacial Pack

korean beauty review glow recipe

I don’t know about you, but I personally have two different skin care regimes for the calendar year: one for the brutal and dry winters and one for the intense humidity in late spring and summer here in the Northeast region of America. Since lady spring has finally decided to bless us with her presence, it meant that it was time to switch my skincare routine. I didn’t put much of an effort into taking care of my skin when I was younger but I’ve reached a pivotal point in my life where I’ve realize that there’s really no such thing as it being too early to take care of problems such as potential acne and its after effects, fine lines and wrinkles and something which is the core of it all, your skin type.

KultScene interviewed Glow Recipe, which is an online store based in the US that distributes Korean brands that are shipped to them from South Korea, a few months ago, so when I was looking for products I decided to go back to them. These brands and products are made accessible and readily available to be shipped out to not only those who live in the States, but also those abroad, such as in Belgium, Iceland, New Zealand, Hong Kong, and many other countries.

Skin 411

Just to give you a brief history, I’m oily 95 percent of the year, especially in my T-zone and cheeks. That other 5 percent is when I’m in the middle of a blizzard and it’s minus 25 degrees out. Luckily, as oily as I am, I’m not acne prone; I’ll get random breakouts every now and then, but they usually disappear within a few days, and if they’re really stubborn, than a week max. However, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve begun to notice I’ve developed larger pores, especially on my nose and cheeks. I’ve tried a number of different exfoliators, masks, cleansers, and toners, but due to the chemicals that are in the particular mainstream products that I was using, my skin would act up due and get red due to the irritation.


Also on KultScene: Best Music Video Fashion: April 2015 Releases”

glow recipe, korean beauty, korean skincare

The Journey Begins

Because my skin has been showing signs of sensitivity in the recent months, I decided to search the market for new products. Some important factors for me going into this search was that these products have to be lightweight, odorless and paraben free, paraben is a compound formed from acid and alcohol of p-hydroxybenzoic acid which helps extend the products shelf life; skincare products that contain paraben can be unhealthy for your skin. There are a ton of skincare products on the market that claim to be lightweight and free of harsh chemicals, a lot of them are American and European based companies. But this time around, I decided to go in a new direction and follow what’s been the rave lately and opted to try out Korean skincare products.

Cosmetic Hallyu

One might ask, why choose Korean skincare? What’s the difference, and why is everyone raving about it? As Glow Recipe explains on their website, in Korea, beauty equals healthy, youthful skin, therefore a lot of Korean women will try whatever it may take to keep their skin looking youthful and iridescent. Innovations such as BB creams, which stemmed from Korea, have now become a global staple. Many American and European brands have tried to make their own versions of BB cream but it’s really not the same:

The use of natural beauty ingredients in Korea dates back to ancient palace literature and many brands reflect this holistic approach to beauty. Rice water, kelp, honey, red bean…the list is infinite.

The Products

After much debate and trying to narrow it down from the large selection of serums, creams, masks, and cleansers, I was able to choose two products in which I felt fit my needs the best. The two items that caught my eye are the Dr. Oracle The Snow Queen Enzyme Powder Wash, retails for $25, which was recommended to me, and the Goodal Wash Up Deep Clean Pore Glacial Clay, also $25.

Powder face washes are up-and-coming with a few brands out there with a similar concept like the Enzyme Powder Wash, one being AMOREPACIFIC, retails for $60, which is also a Korean brand. I’m used to using powder to set my foundation and concealer, not on it’s own, so I was a bit hesitant with the thought of it being used as a cleanser. Although I had read and seen the 15 second clip about it on the website, I was thrown in for a surprise when I added the water to the powder and saw it dissolve from a grainy substance into a foaming cleanser. When mixed in your palm, the powder turns into a rich foamy texture but once applied to your face, the foams deflates and you’re left with a light coating of smaller bubbles. From afar, one would think your face was sparkling, but it’s just the residue from the cleanser.

For experimental purposes, I left the cleanser on for a minute, just to see if it would dry out on it’s own or stay semi-wet on my face. Surprisingly, even after a minute, the bubbles from the foaming earlier, was still on my face, and although it wasn’t 100 percent dry all the way, there was some tightening in my cheeks and forehead. I’m usually very sensitive to products that are scented, whether it be naturally or chemically done, especially when that product is going directly on my face. However, the smell was almost nonexistent, even though the powder is of pineapple and papaya enzyme.

Granted, this was only my first time using it, but I did notice a subtle difference soon after washing the cleanser off and drying my face. The redness that surrounded my nose and cheeks had lightened up and wasn’t as prominent. Not only can you mix this powder into a thicker consistency, but if added with a smaller ratio of water than powder, it will also work as an exfoliator; it’s like getting a two in one deal!

glow recipe, enzyme powder wash, korean beauty, korean skincare

After applying the cleanser on

In the past, I’ve tried a number of clay masks, but this was the first time I’ve seen a mask as light, in color, as the Deep Clean Pore Glacial Clay wash-off pack. Clays can be hit or miss for some people. The one’s that seem to work are occasionally drenched in chemicals, which you can smell once you open the jar or tube that it’s in, while the ones that have minimal smell, don’t have much of an after effect. Due to my past negative experiences and reading up on other people’s stories, I was nervous yet excited to try something new.

glow recipe, deep clean pore glacial clay, korean beauty, korean skincare

The clay had a smooth and velvety texture.


Also on KultScene: Music Video Fashion: Red Velvet’s “Automatic”

What drew me in and sealed the deal with the glacial clay mask was the fact that it has green tea extract. Although I knew there was a chance it might’ve been fragranced, I also knew green tea is suppose to be good for you, whether it’s being used externally or being consumed internally. The mask comes with mini spatula meant for you to scoop the product out, but because it’s a clay mask and bound to get messy anyway, I scooped the product out with my fingers since I’ll be using them to spread out the product on my face later anyway. The texture is very velvety and smooth, like a clay mask should be. There’s very little fragrance, if any at all, which makes me wonder if all the other products on Glow Recipe’s website are fragrance free or if I’ve just been lucky and purchased an odorless batch.

glow recipe, deep clean pore glacial clay, korean beauty, korean skincare

I allowed the mask 10 minutes to dry.

I purchased the clay mask in hopes of minimizing and purifying my pores, and because my more problematic areas are on my nose and cheeks, I focused more of the product on those areas, whilst I spread a thinner layer on the rest of my face. It could’ve been that I added an extra layer to my nose because that part of my face took the longest to dry. The instructions said to leave the mask on for anywhere between 5-10 minutes, or until dry, but I’ve read somewhere that it’s not good to leave a mask on for more than the allotted time, since that may cause premature wrinkles, and as if I don’t have enough problems going on as it is on my face, I definitely don’t need lady lines visiting me anytime soon.

Like the cleanser, as the clay dried, my cheeks and forehead tightened. The clay itself felt very light and gentle on the skin. In the past, if a clay mask was infused with a number of ingredients, my face would get a tingling sensation and I’d also get a slight burning sensation. But because the glacial clay isn’t loaded with as many chemicals and ingredients, my face felt fine. Once I washed it off, I noticed the pores on my cheeks and forehead had visibly gotten smaller, my skin was brighter and my complexion was more even than before when I had used just the cleanser. My face had a nice elastic bounce to it and felt very refreshed.

glow recipe, deep clean pore glacial clay, enzyme powder wash, korean beauty, korean skincare

How my skin looks after using the cleanser and clay mask.

Overall Thoughts

Glow Recipe offers free shipping on purchases over $50, which can be easily spent, especially when the website has such a wide selection of great products. I placed my order on a Sunday night and received the package that very Tuesday. Because they’re shipping from the US, you can rest assure that you’ll be receiving your order relatively quick. If you’re an avid online shopper, you know that great feeling of getting a package fast, right? Not only was I impressed with the speedy delivery, but along with the items that I purchased, Glow Recipe also threw in a few samples! Everyone loves samples! What’s great about them being a US company is if you were to have any questions or concerns, you could just reach out to them through email and expect an email back in English. Communication is key, especially if you need assistance and input with something that’s eventually going on your face! I was hoping to get more use out of these two products before I gave you my two cents, but I wanted to share these great finds with our readers at KultScene ASAP! I’ll be doing updates in the following weeks, so make sure to stay tuned!

Interested in the products that I mentioned? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.