Hey everyone and welcome back to my blog!
This is one of the highly anticipated reviews because it features products from two very popular Korean beauty brands.
S K I N F O O D
D E A R , K L A I R S
Skinfood is one of the first known brands by the western beauty industry that offers skincare and makeup products with an array of options and categories that you will be confused which one to choose and what to pass. They have something for every skin type, specific requirements and just about everything that a true beauty affcianado loves to experiment with. The quality and packaging of the products will please even the pickiest shoppers. From freshly squeezed tomatoes for dark spots, lettuce and cucumber for fresh hydration to black sugar for gentle exfoliation and refined skin texture and so many more, this brand is for sure on the wishlists of hundreds and thousands of beauty addicts.
Dear, Klairs is a skincare brand that is focused towards gentle effective formulas without irritating sensitive skin. Their products are well tolerated and raved about on social media as well as by regular customers. They are against animal testing and all their products are free from parabens, alcohol, artifical fragrances and dyes. One of their products other than what I will be reviewing in this post is Midnight Blue Youth Activating Drop that I am looking forward to try out.
Today’s review is focused on two very similar yet different products from Skinfood and Klairs. Skinfood Black Sugar Polish is known and raved about by millions of customers and almost everyone knows about this product. So much so they have also launched three more variants- Honey, Strawberry and Essential 2X. There is also a rice one, if you don’t know. On the other end, Klairs product is still on it’s way to becoming a Korean as well as worldwide household.
I will be comparing both the products based on many criterias;
And finally, are both the products worth their price tag?
We shall see.
Let’s begin with Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off;
This product is quite confusing in itself. It looks like a scrub but is called a mask. It is from Skinfood’s Black Sugar line which is centered around black sugar from Brazil-as per the brand. The primary ingredient being sugar(sucrose in this case), it is indicated for dull rough texture regardless of the skin type, although the brand suggests using the honey mask for drier skin types. I would say, just add some honey from your pantry, girl!
This product is quite confusing in itself. It looks like a scrub but is called a mask. It has a very dense grainy consistency and looks like very tightly packed sugar and honey(there is no honey, btw) mixture in the jar. The packaging is actually very cute and reminds me of icecream tubs. It comes only in one size of 100gms translucent plastic jar and the prices vary from one e commerce website to another but is sold for 10USD on the very popular k-beauty shopping destinations- SokoGlam and YesStyle.
The other notable ingredients in this mask are shea butter, macademia oil, lanolin(unless you find this ingredient just plain weird or you are towards vegan skincare) and meadowfoam seed oil. These provide the moisturising properties to the mask. There are other skin conditioning ingredients like glycerin, caprylic/capric triglyceride and candelilla wax- brings that soft waxy consistency.
How to use;
Scoop a small amount of the product and add few drops of water or toner to emulsify the mask, if required. I suggest doing this by people who have sensitised skin to reduce the friction. Massage for a minute or two and leave for 15-20 minites before washing it off with warm water.
How do I use it?
I take more than a dime sized amount on the back of my hand and dot the product all over my face and neck on dry skin. I add floral water or two drops of oil(during winters) to make it less abrasive and massage very gently(I mean very gently) and slowly for five minutes. Using only the pads of my fingers(the soft area at the top portion of fingers) I let the sugar dissolve converting into a dark caramel coloured mask. This aids to the physical exfoliation for your skin and while the mask is left on, the glycolic acid content in the sugar provides mild chemical exfoliation.
To remove the mask, I wet my face with warm water and take it off using circular motions and finishing with a soft flannel or micro fiber cloth.
My experience with this mask?
It is decently priced for the amount of product we get. The more you will use it, the less often you will need it afterwards. It shows significant results on dry rough texture, excess surface oil and gives a subtle even toned look from the very first use. There are some pretty good ingredients that nourish the skin while the mask is on. I find the fragrance to be very refreshing, more like sweet lemon scent. If you have used Black Sugar Scrub Foam which I really love and took with me on holidays, then you will find the scent almost identical because both the products are from the same range. The texture of this mask is quite abrasive, so if you have an inflamed skin regardless of the cause, you will need to add oils or honey which will bring a creamier consistency.
Moving on to Dear, Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Polish;
Now, this product is named exactly the way it works and is supposed to be used. The formulation is based on Klairs concept of offering result driven products for sensitive skin types. Instead of sugar, Klairs have used black strap powder which is rich in minerals and also used for edible purposes. The name is defined by it’s rich dark colour that gives this deep caramel hue to this facial scrub.
Sensitive skin can be both dry and oily because it is a condition which is mistakenly known as a skin type. So, if you have sensitive skin it will be wiser to understand your actual skin type and requirement based on your skin’s intolerance level.
The packaging of Klairs Black Sugar Polish is quite chic and old fashioned at the same time- I love it by the way! It is a dark amber coloured tub which can easily be mistaken for a glass, but it is a very good quality thick plastic packaging. It is now sold in a 110gms quantity as opposed to previous 50gms. The prices again differ with every seller but is usually between 20-25 USD which is double of Skinfood’s version.
Here is the link: Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Polish
Klairs have kept their ingredients list interesting. The most recent one has been reformulated in 2017 which is suitable for vegan friendly consumers. It doesn’t include beeswax which was a part of previous product. The texture of this polish is grainy but is not as dense like Skinfood’s and has a creamier consistency. That is brought by petrolatum(mineral oil) which is one of the most controversial ingredient- but I am not against it entirely, shea butter, cranberry seed oil and not very popularly known carapa guaianensis seed oil- from amazonian forests known to be a skin softener and effective against inflammation. It also contains licorice root powder an antioxidant, anti inflammatory and mostly renowned for it’s skin lightening properties.
How to use;
You can use this product exactly the same way as Skinfood Black Sugar Mask but Klairs recommed using it with their Cleansing Oil, which will provide a 2 in 1 action.
How do I use it?
I am not against Klairs but I will most definitely be using another cleanser after an oil. And, if I have used a scrubbing agent in my first cleanse, then using a foaming wash would be very stripping.
I will recommend using this polish with few drops of oil or just as it is after cleansing or if you wish to add this to your cleansing oil like the brand suggests then try to remove most of your makeup with a bi phased water and skip a second cleanse altogether.
My experience with this mask;
This is a good product, but for the price, I think Klairs could have added bit more of exciting ingredients that would work for all skin types. It costs more than twice of what Skinfood offers and the formulation is not extraordinary. I certainly did not notice much of a difference whenever I used this scrub even though I used it exactly like the one from Skinfood. It is way too gentle to be considered as a polishing product and doesn’t have any moisturising qualities even though it is indicated for smoothening dry rough texture. Since it is claimed to be fragrance free, it smells synthetic to me but I don’t give primary importance to scents anyway.
Who can use Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off?
Everyone except those who have a very intolerant skin(consistent irritation and inflammation) and multiple active acne spots.
You can add olive oil, avocado oil or Sea Buckthorn Oil (which I am loving currently) to make it less abrasive and get polished yet supple glow. This oil has many properties like Rosehip oil and many others, plus it is more moisturising. People who can get easily clogged pores from use of natural oils should test this one before applying all over the face.
Who can use Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Polish?
Someone who has a very irritated skin and just needs an extra helping hand without looking to achieve visible results. The gentle friction will however slightly improve the texture of the skin.
As it may be easily presumed, Skinfood Black Sugar Mask Wash Off will be my choice as it is very inexpensive, does its job very well and can easily be customised. I am looking forward to trying out the other variants. I wish they made all their products Paraben and Cruelty Free.
I hope this post was helpful and hopefully made it easier for you to decide purchasing your next korean beauty product.
Thank you so much for reading.