Thursday, 6 August 2015

Review: Blossom Jeju 100% Camellia Seed Oil & Pink Camellia Soombi Blooming Flower Toner

The world of K-Beauty has introduced me to some interesting ingredients: propolis, birds nests, galactomyces, snails, starfish, fermented soybeans, fermented everything, and most recently: camellia oil. Ok it doesn't sound as jazzy as the others but it's one I've heard good things about (the wisdom of of ahjumeonis and obasamas). It seems to be a well-known but fairly uncommon ingredient - except in Tatcha products which cost serious $$. Like $28 for a sheet mask D: Enter Blossom Jeju!

100% Camellia Seed Oil

Packaging & Texture
The Oil comes in a glass amber dropper bottle which protects it from degradation in sunlight. (This is what that Klairs serum should have been packaged in -.-)

I use the Oil as the last step in my night routine. It absorbs well but not fully so I wouldn't use it during the day unless you can really rock that oily sheen.

100% cold pressed camellia seed oil

Camellia seed oil is a powerful antioxidant rich in Omegas 3, 6 and 9; fatty acids, which help improve skin elasticity; Vitamin E and polyphenols, which protect the skin from free radical damage.

By comparison, the Camellia Soombi Essence Oil contains 73.09% Camellia japonica seed oil and the Pink Camellia Soombi Essence Serum contains 62.40% Camellia japonica flower extract. The mixture of oils would probably be more effective than using camellia seed oil alone, but neither are suitable for me because they both contain olive oil - one of my acne triggers :(

Antioxidant serums are kinda hard to review because they’re one of those things that work without necessarily showing visible results. My skin hasn't dramatically transformed in the few weeks I’ve been using the Oil, but it does leave my skin feeling soft and supple after use and healthy and glowy looking in the morning. WIN.

Pink Camellia Soombi Blooming Flower Toner

I think I'm in the minority when I say the lotion/essence step is my favourite part of my skincare routine. I like watery textures and layering different products to get the benefit of different ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, CoQ10, galactomyces, green tea, rose water, grape water ... Yep. I do love my lotions.

Packaging & Texture
Look at that beautiful bottle! ᕙ( * •̀ ᗜ •́ * )ᕗ The lotion is dispensed via a small hole in the top and it's easy to control how much comes out. The texture is slightly more viscous than water (similar to the Gokujyun lotion) and absorbs easily. 

(Nado smeelllll~) Whereas the Oil is almost odourless, the Toner is VERY strongly scented. It's a bit too perfumey for my liking but it's not the smell itself that concerns me - more the thought that I'm diligently patting a crapload of perfume into my skin. I can't figure out why the smell is so strong when 'fragrance' is right at the end of the list. You'd think the answer was staring me in the face with 82.82% camellia flowers, but camellias don't smell, so... does that apply to skincare? IDK ._.

Camellia Japonica Flower Extract (82.82%), Pentylene Glycol, Glycerin, Propanediol, Niacinamide, Water, Akebia Quinata Extract (Chocolate Vine), Panthenol, Polyglyceryl-10 Laurate, Caprylyl Glycol, Polyglyceryl-10 Myristate, Xanthan Gum, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Betaine, Sorbitol, Adenosine, Sorbitan Caprylate, Arginine, Opuntia Ficus-Indica Fruit Extract [Sicilian Prickly Pear], Centella Asiatica Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract [Green Tea], Polygonum Cuspidatum Root Extract [Japanese Knotweed], Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Trehalose, Hyaluronic Acid, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Levulinic Acid, Bioflavonoids, Brassica Oleracea Italica (Broccoli) Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Leaf Extract, Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract [Satsuma], Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Skin Extract, Hizikia Fusiforme Extract [Hiziki], Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Silybum Marianum Extract [Milk Thistle], Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Yeast Beta-Glucan, Fragrance

Camellia Japonica Flower Extract
One of the reasons I chose the Pink Toner over the Camellia Soombi Toner from the Hydration & Nutrition range (yellow bottle) was for the high percentage of Camellia japonica flower extract (82.82%) compared to 76.36% Camellia japonica flower water in the yellow toner.

If my two line analysis of the antioxidant properties of Camellia seed oil didn't impress you, I found a paper on the antioxidant effect, here. Yeah science!

Lightens hyperpigmentation and brightens skintone. The Camellia Soombi Toner doesn't contain niacinamide which was another reason to chose the Pink Soombi Toner. I have a few products with niacinamide (Missha FTE, Black Snails, Placenta 45) and they seem to be working well so I'm always happy to add more niacinamide to my routine! :)

Akebia Quinata Extract (Chocolate Vine)
Provides an an anti-ageing effect through anti-glycation (stops the breakdown of collagen).  

Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract
Known for it's anti-inflammatory and brightening effect.

Promotes the production of collagen.

This Toner is packed FULL of anti-oxidant plant extracts. I ran them through Beautypedia because I don't speak plant and was impressed to find they all had a 'best' or 'good' rating - except for your 'average' rosemary and satsuma.

Hydrating Ingredients  
[Listed in blue:] Glycerin, panthenol, sorbitol, hyaluronic acid (humectants), trehalose and Aloe barbadensis leaf extract (water-binding ingredients). Humectants draw water to the skin to give effective surface hydration.

I don't give ratings to products, but this one deserves the first 10/10 for its ingredients!

The Toner leaves my skin feeling hydrated and luminous but as a standalone product I don't think it's made a noticeable difference in lightening my PIH.

Overall Impressions
All in all I'm very happy with these products. When you wake up, wash your face and look like you've applied make-up, you know something is working right! 

Where to Buy
I bought my goodies directly from Blossom Jeju, linked below:

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