Beauty & Shopping, Skincare

MW Top 5 List: Skincare Products You’ve Probably Not Bought Yet

You’ve probably heard about them, read about them … and wondered if you should buy them. Well, as September makes its exit, we know the wet, cold and humid weather of the monsoon months would soon be upon us. Time to add a little more help to your skincare regime! We’re sure you don’t want to greet 2015 looking less than fabulous.

This month, we introduced you the game-changing prowess of Sulwhasoo Luminature Essential Finisher, explained the efficacy of Hada Labo Lotion‘s 4 interlocking hyaluronic acid, and demonstrated the anti-ageing effects Clarins Extra-Firming Eye Complete Rejuvenating Cream. Besides these, the Material World team have also tried some incredible beauty products that we simply have to share with you. So, if you’re still in two minds whether to snap up a particular skincare product, the 5 below certainly have our stamps of approval.


Skincare Products You’ve Probably Not Bought Yet 

#5 Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Lotion SPF 20 PA+++
Coming in at No. 5, we have the heavenly scented Fresh Black Tea moisturizer-sunscreen. The packaging scores points by surprising us with a little twist, literally! Twist its cap and the dispenser pump rises from the center. Clean, no-mess, so fun to use.

WE LOVE: The comforting cream disappears into nothing on your skin, great for those who think sunscreens make their skins even oilier! Combination of black tea ferment, lychee seed extract and blackberry leaf extract provides an anti-ageing boost by sweeping away free radicals and improving skin elasticity.


#4 Innisfree Soybean Energy Essence [Light] 
A 6-in-1 skin lotion, this watery product promises to be a multi-functioning skin elixir for those with oily and combination complexions. This essence contains 94 percent fermented soybean extract obtained through 300 days of natural fermentation in a volcanic claypot atop Mount Halla in Jeju Island.

WE LOVE: That it’s free of parabens, animal ingredients, minerals, colorants and artificial fragrance. The essence feels incredibly refreshing on the skin. What blew us away was the video the brand shared at its launch. To show how it strengthens the barrier function, the researchers soaked an eye yolk in the essence for 24 hours. After a day, they picked up the egg yolk and dropped it onto a plate. The yolk did not break up, proving this essence is indeed capable of strengthening your skin.


#3 Kiehl’s Dermatologist Solutions Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturizing Serum Concentrate 
As explained before, hydration is extremely important when it comes to maintaining healthy, younger-looking skin. This potent hydrating serum from Kiehl’s penetrates 10 layers of skin and awakens channels of moisture transportation that have grown weak due to age. Using a combination of plant-based glycerin and shiso leaf extract, this serum anchors water in skin to turn dry, papery-thin, ageing skin into youthful, plump skin again!

WE LOVE: That it gets absorbed by the skin so easily. Founder Debs, who is obsessed with keeping that youthful bounce in her skin, can testify to the effectiveness of this serum. Her testimonial can even be found in the September issue of Kiehl’s Times!


#2 Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate 
There’s been a lot of talk about strengthening the skin from within as a way of truly protecting it from the ravages of Time. This September, Shiseido launches a concentrate that enhances skin’s inherent defences against stress and environmental pollution. The concentrate gives skin’s immunity a boost by activating the Langerhans cells, which may have been compromised by age and stress. Backed by some 20 years’ of research, this ground-breaking product also boosts the efficacy of your other skincare products.

WE LOVE: That it made our skins softer and smoother to the touch within just one day of use. And, unlike most anti-ageing products that focus on erasing wrinkles or improving lift, Ultimune talks about strong skin being good skin. This is definitely a refreshing way to look at preserving your beauty through the years.


#1 Biotherm Blue Therapy Serum In Oil 
Ringing in at No. 1 is Biotherm’s newest Blue Therapy Serum In Oil. A micro-algae oil rich in omega-3 fatty acid is fused with a serum for a non-greasy, non-sticky anti-ageing night treatment. The Blue Therapy range is most definitely one of the brand’s more successful lines and the night serum is truly an innovative product for those who have come to believe in the efficacy of Blue Therapy.

WE LOVE: How easily absorbed this serum in oil is. It’s not even a “if you sleep in air-conditioned room” product. This serum in oil works beautifully in air-conditioned and non air-conditioned rooms. It gets first on our list this month because one night was all it took to see a significant improvement in the texture and glow of our skins. Bumps on foreheads disappeared after just one night. Definitely a gem to have if you feel your skin is in need of a good dose of ultra pampering.


Have you tried any of these products? If so, what are your thoughts about them? Share them with us in the Comments section below – we would most definitely love to hear from you, fellow beauty junkies! 


Material World was given the aforementioned products to review. All opinions are our own. These reviews were not advised nor paid for by any of the brands above.

Beauty & Shopping, Skincare

Beauty Review: Biotherm Life Plankton Essence – Deborah Tan

When it comes to essences, most people have come to trust one by a Japanese brand – even Deborah Tan. But she tries Biotherm’s new Life Plankton Essence for 8 days and now finds her loyalty wavering.

If you’ve ever used a Biotherm product, you’d know about the brand’s iconic ingredient – Life Plankton. An ingredient discovered in the thermal springs in the Pyrenees, scientists have found that Life Plankton has exceptional renewing and soothing properties. And, in the brand’s newest products, you’ll see that Life Plankton is now being used together with other marine ingredients, such as the red algae found along the coasts of Brittany, to help skin cope with a number of concerns ranging from sagging to blemishes.

This year, scientists are Biotherm have created a product with the highest concentration of Life Plankton. At 5%, the concentration of Life Plankton in a bottle of Life Plankton Essence may not sound like a lot, but according to Dr Elisa Simonpietri, Biotherm’s International Scientific Director, “Life Plankton is so powerful, that at 5%, it has been shown to soothe symptoms of the common skin disorder atopic dermatitis.”

Does It Deliver On Its Claims?
Life Plankton Essence claims to deliver 8 skin benefits in 8 days. In just slightly over a week, you’ll notice improvements in the following areas:

– Skin becomes more radiant
– Fine lines become more faded
– Skin looks more even
– Skin feels smoother
– Skin is more hydrated
– There is greater resilience and elasticity
– Skin feels soothed
– Skin feels softer

The texture of this essence is slightly thicker than your usual essence. Apply to freshly cleansed skin by gently patting the essence into your skin at your face and neck area. You can use it with other Biotherm products or with your usual skincare products.

To demonstrate the essence’s youth-renewing efficacy, Biotherm Laboratories developed The Hand Test, where 28 women were asked to treat one of their hands with the essence in the morning and at night for 8 days. Judges were then blindfolded, asked to feel these hands and answer the question: According to you, what age do you associate with this skin? The treated hands were perceived to be 2.7 years younger on the average, with the best being 12.8 years.

In another self-assessment by 53 women, 100% of them reported less visible lines, brighter-looking skin and more even skin tones.

The results are definitely encouraging and I put it to the test:

Before (left) and After (right). Pictures taken with iPhone 4S and have not been digitally altered.

Before (left) and After (right). Pictures taken with iPhone 4S and have not been digitally altered.

I decided to test it WITH MAKEUP, to see if the improvements are visible even under makeup. As you can see my skin tone is more even and my complexion definitely looks more radiant. These results in just 8 days!

When I first learnt that Life Plankton Essence contains just 5% of its active ingredient, I was skeptical about whether it would really work. Since other essences in the market contains up to 99% of active ingredients, 5% seems like a pathetic number. However, as the essence has proven, 5% is enough to make a dramatic difference to the skin.

I really like the texture of the essence too. It hydrates the skin so well, on some days, I felt as if I didn’t even need a moisturizer.

I strongly recommend this to anyone who needs to boost the condition of their skin in a short period of time.

8 skincare benefits in 8 days - Biotherm Life Plankton Essence

8 skincare benefits in 8 days – Biotherm Life Plankton Essence

This post was neither paid for nor advised by Biotherm. All opinions are the author’s own.

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.

Beauty & Shopping, Skincare

Beauty Review: Biotherm Liquid White Spot Focus – Deborah Tan

Biotherm’s White D-tox range gets a new update in the form of Liquid White. Deborah Tan tries Liquid White Spot Focus Ever-Clear Dark Spot Corrector for 2 weeks to see if it delivers on its promises.

Although not obvious, there is a line of spots and acne scar pits running from my temples to just below my cheekbones. The region is also slightly darker than the rest of my face. It looks like a U. This is fine – it gives the impression of a slightly sculpted face. But I’ve wondered if it would be possible to even out the skin tone there.

Biotherm’s new Liquid White Spot Focus Ever-Clear Dark Spot Corrector claims to address the “butterfly mask” some of us have in the form of freckles and pigmentation. I decided to use it to see if it would lighten my “U” shaped pigmented area.


For 2 weeks, I applied a spot of the serum, post-cleansing, along the stretch on the left side of my face. My right was testing another product. Every day, twice a day, I would apply this serum before my moisturizer.

The serum has a water-like texture and is easily absorbed by the skin. After two weeks, my result below:

Before (left) and After (right). Pictures taken without makeup and under the same lighting. Photos have not been airbrushed or digitally altered in any way.

Before (left) and After (right). Pictures taken without makeup and under the same lighting. Photos have not been airbrushed or digitally altered in any way.

The area has lightened significantly, and my skin texture has also become much finer. The pores and the pits are also not as deep as they used to be.

Besides Biotherm’s iconic Pure Thermal Plankton, Liquid White Spot Focus also combines Red Algae (that helps fight dullness and limiting melanin’s flow up to skin’s surface) and White Lotus Extract (that helps fight oxidative damages, dehydration and pigmentation) to help “depollute” the skin of toxins that mar its radiance and translucency. In 4 weeks, users can expect a brighter complexion, and in 8 weeks, fewer and smaller dark spots.

While there are no lack of choices when it comes to spot correcting serums, I think this new offering by Biotherm is one of the gentlest and most hydrating I’ve tried. My test period was during the time when Singapore was suffering a mini drought of sorts and my skin often felt scorched and parched at the end of the day. The serum was a joy to use, its watery texture felt like a real treat for the skin.

If you have been trying to lighten your acne scars with little success, I think you can give this a shot. In fact, you can go online here and request for a free sample. Like I always say, try before you buy.

Biotherm Liquid White Spot Focus Ever-Clear Dark Spot Corrector was given to Material World for review purposes. The opinions are the author’s own. This review was not paid for nor advised by Biotherm. You may read our advertising policy here.


Got 5 Minutes?


About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. The beauty addict admits to applying up to 2 serums every morning and every night. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.

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Beauty & Shopping, Skincare

Beauty Review: Biotherm Body Sculpter – Vanessa Tai

As much as we know the only way to lose weight is through a sensible diet and exercise, we also secretly wish we could speed up the process with slimming products. But do these products work?

As an empowered woman of the 21st century, I wholly embrace body love and all that jazz. However there are days where I do grapple with body insecurities. After all, as Denise argued in her article on body image, it’s okay if we don’t love our bodies ALL THE TIME. It’s far more important that we view these negative thoughts with a rational eye, and evaluate why is it we’re feeling this way. For me, I tend to feel blobby and unattractive whenever I haven’t exercised for a while. After about three or four days of zero physical activity, my energy levels take a major dip and I would feel fat in whatever outfit I pick out. It’s not a good place to be in, trust me.

This is why I’ve recently made a commitment to run at least three times a week, for 30 minutes each time. This is on top of hour-long boot camp sessions once a week. However, I still find it hard to rein in my diet. My biggest weakness? Beer. After a long day of work, nothing hits the spot quite like a cold, frothy mug of beer, and let’s face it, I rarely ever stop at one. While it’s been proven that beer belly is NOT a result of beer, it’s still an undeniable fact that beer contains plenty of calories, and excessive drinking can lead to you putting on weight.

This is why, as much as I try keep active, my soft spot for beer has led to other “soft spots” on my body, namely my belly. It looks and feels like a stress ball – round and squishy – and is truly a source of stress in my life. When Deborah passed me the Biotherm Body Sculpter to try, I was sceptical but hopeful.

Biotherm Body Sculpter, $65

Biotherm Body Sculpter, $65

The claim:

Biotherm Body Sculpter is formulated with 5 percent pure caffeine to simultaneously achieve two slimming results – reducing the appearance of extra curves, and firming up your skin. As you may know, caffeine has a dehydrating effect so it pulls fluid from your skin, reducing the appearance of cellulite. Caffeine is also able to stimulate lipolysis, the process of the breakdown of stored fat and lipids by a chemical reaction with water. According to in-vitro tests performed by Biotherm researchers, the Body Sculpter is able to boost the fat burning process by up to 87 percent.

My thoughts: 

I faithfully used the Body Sculpter on my belly and back of thighs every evening for two weeks. The lightweight emulsion gel is not as sticky as other body contouring creams that I’ve tried, and it leaves your skin feeling cool and tingly to the touch. The best way I can describe it is, it’s similar to that coolness you feel on your skin after being swabbed with an alcohol swab.

I don’t know if it’s because I’ve been drinking more beer than usual, but I didn’t notice any visible reduction of tummy fat. I measured myself before and after the two weeks, and I’m still the same size! However, I did notice that my skin tone appeared firmer and not as flabby. Another thing I noticed is how the cellulite on the back of my thighs seemed to have dissipated. Previously, I used to notice my skin dimpling whenever I squeezed the fat on the back of my thighs, but that “orange-peel” effect has now lessened considerably.

Of course, at the end of the day, nothing beats the bulge better than good ol’fashioned exercise and diet (for me, that means no more chugging down beer every other day!). But if you’ll like to complement your weight loss regime, a body contouring product like Biotherm Body Sculpter – which comes chockfull of caffeine – is a good bet.

This post is in no way paid for or advised by Biotherm. The writer was given a tube of the Biotherm Body Sculpter for review purposes. You may read our advertising policy here. Biotherm Body Sculpter is available for $65 at the following Biotherm outlets

About The Author: Vanessa Tai is a founder of Material World who has previously worked on magazines Simply Her and Cosmopolitan Singapore. Now a freelance writer and a full-time contributor to this website, the 26-year-old dreams of attending every single major music festival before she turns 30. Follow her on Twitter @VannTaiTweets.

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Beauty & Shopping, Health & Fitness

26 Things To Put On Your March Watchlist

The first quarter of 2014 is almost completed and what exciting things have you done or checked out? This list of 26 things should inspire you to get out and get exploring!

A is for AntiGravity Fitness

Anyone game to hang out?

Anyone game to hang out?

Challenge yourself to a whole new type of workout experience this March at Breathe Pilates! Introducing AntiGravity Fitness, a revolutionary form of exercise to help you build a stronger core, improve joint flexibility and cardiovascular stamina. Using a hammock, participants hang vertically inverted to help realign the spine. AntiGravity Fitness is available at Breathe Pilates’ East Coast studio, for more information, visit now!

B is for Bright Eyes

Wake up to brighter-looking eyes this March!

Wake up to brighter-looking eyes this March!

Show your eyes who’s the boss with Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega-Bright Eye Illuminating Cream. With ingredients such as ume, molasses and centella asiatica, this eye cream promises to brighten the eye area and improve skin density in just 4 weeks.

Origins can be found at Isetan Scotts, Metro Paragon and Robinsons Orchard.  

C is for Clearly Corrective White

This masque is perfect for quenching thirsty skins too!

This masque is perfect for quenching thirsty skins too!

March is a BIG month for one of our all-time favourite brands, Kiehl’s! This month, fans of Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective White can look forward to the return of the Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution in a JUMBO size. Also, be prepared for FASTER results as the brand welcomes the arrival of Kiehl’s first-ever sheet mask, Clearly Corrective White Hydrating & Clarifying Treatment Masque. Each masque is the equivalent of 3 weeks’ use of the Dark Spot Solution and together, the duo can give you a significant boost in clarity and radiance in 3 weeks.

Kiehl’s Dermatologist Solutions Clearly Corrective White series is available at all Kiehl’s stores islandwide now!

D is for Denise

She doesn't just deliver punchy copy. Denise delivers a mean punch too!

She doesn’t just deliver punchy copy. Material World’s Denise (far right) delivers a mean punch too!

Material World’s Denise will be taking part in her first boxing competition at Executive Knockout, an event organised by Impakt Gym. Some of the proceeds from ticket sales will go towards ONE(SINGAPORE), so if you want to show her your support and do your part for a good cause, get your tickets at this link today!

E is for Earth Hour
Saving the environment just got a whole lot sexier. World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Singapore just announced that the cast of the upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Jamie Foxx – will be in Singapore on 29 March to commemorate Earth Hour. The stars would be helping turn off the lights across the Marina Bay area at precisely 8.30pm.

F is for Fossil

Don't you just love the super-cute icons on the watch face?

Don’t you just love the super-cute icons on the watch face?

Fossil celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, and it has launched a series of limited edition watches to mark the occasion. We’re dying to get our hands on the Townsman Watch. Only 984 pieces are available worldwide, and it features vintage Fossil motifs – such as an old-school telephone and robot – as indexes. Definitely one for the collectors among you!

G is for Ghibli
Studio Ghibli, that is! This is the internationally acclaimed animation studio that brought you classics such as “My Friend Totoro”, “Grave of the Fireflies”, and “Spirited Away”. Sadly, founder and director Hayao Miyazaki has announced that the upcoming “The Wind Rises” would be his last film. In celebration of his illustrious career, Golden Village is holding a special screening of several of his most popular films. Click here for details.

H is for Hotel Clover The Arts
Awkward name aside, we have to applaud the people behind this new boutique hotel for being so supportive of the local art scene. Each and every one of its rooms has a mural designed by students from the various art and design schools, or an independent professional artist. Definitely Instagram-worthy!

Hotel Clover The Arts is located at 58 South Bridge Road. Tel: 6439 7089

I is for iTunes Gift Cards

A quickie gift idea many will appreciate.

A quickie gift idea many will appreciate.

Gifting is now made even easier! iTunes Gift Cards are now available in Singapore in denominations of $30, $50, $100 and $150. You can get them at selected resellers such as Challenger, Courts, istudio, epiCentre and InFinite.

J is for Jewellery

Who doesn't love a beautiful bling? Find yours now at TANGS Orchard, Level 1.

Who doesn’t love a beautiful bling? Find yours now at TANGS Orchard, Level 1.

Those with a weakness for pretty shiny things should definitely pop by multi-label concept boutique bycanary at TANGS Orchard, Level 1. Specially curated by former actress/style icon Lum May Yee, bycanary features a selection of exquisite jewellery and designer pieces discovered through her travels and friends. If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind gift for a friend, or even for yourself, this is the place to go.

K is for Kimrobinson accessories
Apart from offering premium hairstyling services, Kimrobinson also carries their own line of designer hair accessories. This season’s collection draws its inspiration from the freedom, florals, and bright hues of Spring/Summer, so you can expect chiffon-floral headbands encrusted with Swarovski crystals, playful crepe de Chine scrunchies, and girly duppioni-silk-ribbon.

Kimrobinson accessories are available at #02-12, Ngee Ann City. 

L is for Ladies’ Watches
The world’s first Casio G-Factory ladies concept store has opened at 313@Somerset, housing the latest models from the Baby-G, Sheen and G-Shock collections. From now till March 31, 2014, you stand a chance to win a getaway for two to Bali with any purchase of a Baby-G or Sheen timepiece.

The Casio G-Factory ladies concept store is located at B1-19 313@Somerset.

M is for is Micellar Solution
A good makeup remover is perhaps the most important thing you’ll need in your skincare regime to ensure your skin stays clear, bright, and healthy. Micellar solution is the Next Big Thing in skincare; it basically acts as a “purifying magnet” to attract oil and impurities, removing them from the surface of your skin with just one swipe. Formulated for dry and sensitive skin, L’Oreal Paris Skin Perfection 3-in-1 Purifying Micellar Solution can be used on your lips and eyes, and also doubles up as a toner and skin soothing lotion. When it comes to having clear, healthy skin, there’s no such thing as magic … but we think micellar solution comes pretty close!

L’Oreal Paris Skin Perfection 3-in-1 Purifying Micellar Solution is available at Watsons, Guardian pharmacies, and Sa Sa.

N is for New Music
As music lovers, we are constantly looking to discover new artistes who cater to our preferred music genres. While Spotify still appears to be king in music streaming services, European-based Deezer is definitely one to watch. With unlimited access to over 30 million licensed tracks from artistes from all around the world, Deezer lets you discover new music, share your favourites with your friends, check out editorial recommendations, and more. The coolest part about Deezer is its Offline Mode feature, which allows you to listen to your pre-selected tracks offline – perfect for our oft-unreliable 3G network. Click here to start your Deezer experience.

O is for Optimal Efficacy Against Dark Spots

Radiance in a bottle!

Radiance in a bottle!

In order to escape this heatwave unscathed, we need to stay smart. Apart from ensuring you have adequate sun protection, you’ll also want to ensure any existing dark spots don’t get darker. Biotherm’s Liquid White Spot Focus Dark Spot Corrector is formulated with red algae extract and white lotus extract, and features a new anti-dark spots technology to fight both the signs and origins of hyper-pigmentation.

For a full listing of Biotherm stores, click here.

P is for Pasarbella & Friends Go To Town

Looking forward to lots of yummy food!

Looking forward to lots of yummy food!

As part of i Light 2014, Pasarbella will be setting up an outdoor market called “Pasarbella & Friends Go To Town”. Featuring traders and purveyors offering a smorgasbord of gastronomic treats, foodies will be in for a treat. This market is open from 7 – 30 March 2014 at Event Plaza @ Marina Bay Sands. Opening hours are 4.30pm – 10pm (Mon – Fri) and 10am – 10pm (Sat & Sun). Admission is free!

Q is for Quirky
Our favourite way of giving our look instant oomph is with a pair of statement sunnies. That’s why we can’t wait to get our hands on a pair of shades from the Craig & Karl and Le Specs collaboration. Aussie pop culture creatives Craig Redman and Karl Maier have had their work displayed at the Louvre, and have done work for the likes of LVMH, Nike and Apple. Now, they’ve put their unique, one-of-a-kind spin on this collection of sunnies and we’re in love.

The Craig & Karl X Le Specs collection is available at Playlab (TANGS Orchard), ASH and Define Happiness (69 Haji Lane).

R is for Ride in Singapore Cable Car
Singapore Cable Car turns 40 this year! Remember those good ol’ days where you and your family piled into a cable car to get into Sentosa? Now you can relive those memories with a Cable Car joyride! From 1 March to 4 May 2014, all DBS/POSB, NTUC cardholders, and SingTel customers get a special 40 percent “Thank You” discount. Click here for details.

S is for Smith Street Taps
Daniel Goh of The Good Beer Company, and Meng Chao of Brewer’s Craft, are well-known in the local craft beer industry. These two industry pioneers have banded together to bring you Smith Street Taps, which brings you a wide range of artisan draft beers. Located at Chinatown Complex (just a few stalls down from The Good Beer Company), you can look forward to an international selection of beers, from Norway to New Zealand. Hic!

Smith Street Taps is located at #02-62 Chinatown Complex

T is for Tea at Axis Bar and Lounge

Scrumptious eats at Axis Bar and Lounge

Scrumptious eats at Axis Bar and Lounge

This March, Mandarin Oriental Singapore caters to the health-conscious with its Wholesome Afternoon Tea, $42++ per guest, $80++ for two. The menu features healthier alternatives such as organic ingredients, whole grains and seeds, but that doesn’t mean blah-tasting food. You’ll still be treated to yummy treats like salmon & petit pois pie, carrot and pumpkin seed cake, and organic maple syrup and pecan tart.

Axis Bar and Lounge is located at Level 4 Mandarin Oriental Singapore, Tel: 6885 3500

U is for UV Rays
Lately, we’ve been getting more than our usual dosage of harmful UV rays thanks to this relentless heatwave! In addition to using sunscreen lately, try incorporating some whitening products into your regime to stave off dark spots. Za True White EX has a truly comprehensive regime, but if you buy just one product, make sure it’s the True White EX Essence Lotion. Doubling up as a toner and a moisturiser, we love its cooling texture, and how smooth and moisturised our faces felt applying it.

Za is available at Watsons and Guardian pharmacies.

V is for Hair Vinegar

Sells out the moment it reaches Singapore so you'd better grab a bottle asap!

Sells out the moment it reaches Singapore so you’d better grab a bottle asap!

Don’t let the word “vinegar” scare you off! Yves Rocher Rinsing Vinegar is based on a traditional botanical remedy that is used to enhance the shine of your hair. Used regularly, it also helps keep your hair radiant. Best of all, it has a delicious raspberry scent that leaves your hair smelling fresh. The store consistently sells out the Rinsing Vinegar so be sure to grab a bottle as soon as you can.

Yves Rocher is located at #02-16 Westgate.

W is for Wednesdays at Bochinche

Cheese and wine = best way to end a Wednesday!

Cheese and wine = best way to end a Wednesday!

Looking to jazz up your midweek with some great music, cheese and wine? Check out Bochinche’s Beat Packing District, which runs every Wednesday night from 7pm to 11pm. At $39, you get to enjoy a carafe of house wine (red/white) and the Argentinian restaurant’s signature Provoleta (melted cheese served with warm homemade bread). Plus, chill out to groovy live house music by DJ Anderpants, and enjoy 20% off the bar menu all night.

Bochinche is located at #02-01 22 Martin Road, Tel: 6235 4990

X is for An XXX Weekend
After undergoing an extensive renovation for nearly five months, Singapore’s first luxury boutique hotel The Scarlet is now open for business again. Swankier and bolder, the guestrooms and suites in particular now boast more personalised design concepts so you can be assured your stay will be nothing short of memorable.

The Scarlet is located at 33 Erskine Road, Tel: 6511 3333

Y is for YSL CC Cream

Can't wait to try this new CC cream by YSL.

Can’t wait to try this new CC cream by YSL.

The brand already has a legion of fans for its awesome Touche Eclat Radiant Touch, and now, it is set to corner the radiant-complexion market with the launch of its CC creams. Expanding on its Forever Light Creator range, YSL will be bringing in CC creams that claim to have skincare benefits on top of cosmetic ones. Most famously, these CC creams tap into the brand’s expertise in glycanbiology to smooth skin texture and lighten dark pigment spots.

YSL can be found at TANGS Orchard.

Z is for Zits

Cleansing is the most important step and here's one that'll help you keep the zits at bay.

Cleansing is the most important step and here’s one that’ll help you keep the zits at bay.

In hot and humid urban Singapore, it’s no wonder that many of us suffer from acne even as adults. Laneige Trouble Relief Line is a skincare line specially formulated for acne-prone skin. The star ingredient here is the Hinoki Cypress Polysaccharide extract to help reduce the growth of the bacteria responsible for causing acne. Our favourite product is the Cleansing Tissue. Use with a little water to create lather before using it on your skin. For an acne product, we loved how soft, clear, and moisturised it left our skin after use.

For a full listing of Laneige stores in Singapore, clink on this link.

Beauty & Shopping, Skincare, Spa Treats

The Beauty Junkie’s Christmas Wishlist – Deborah Tan

Call me a sucker for packaging but I really love it when brands make an effort to decorate their Christmas sets with delightful art. Looking into the shops and seeing all these colours and festive motifs really drives up the desire to blow some serious cash on shopping. Gift sets are also convenient options for those who are a bit clumsy with wrapping paper and ribbons (yep, that’s me you’re looking at). Having received loads of Christmas press releases over the last two months, I am going to do a Show & Tell here on the most attractive beauty gift sets to buy!

1. Kiehl’s

Kiehl's x Haze Every year, Kiehl’s would collaborate with a celebrated artist to design its holiday packaging and limited edition products. This year, the brand enlists the help of Eric Haze, whose works have been seen on the album covers of The Beastie Boys and L.L Cool J. The Kiehl’s X Haze designs can be seen on the Ultra Facial Cream and the Calendula Toner, and the gift boxes you can fill with other Kiehl’s products.

2. Biotherm

Screen shot 2013-11-29 at PM 09.55.02
Another collaboration with an artist. This time, Biotherm with Stockholm-based illustrator Kari Moden. Three of the brand’s best loved classics receive the festive holiday look along with pouches and gift boxes. Part of the proceeds from this limited edition collection will go towards Mission Blue to fund research on ocean acidification.

3. The Body Shop

The Gingerbread School HouseI cannot say enough how important it is to buy a present that also gives back to the community. The Body Shop makes it so simple to do something good while buying something beautiful. Part of the proceeds from the sale of its Christmas sets will go towards The Gingerbread School House Project. Personal favourite: The Ginger Sparkle range is so addictive.

4. Origins

As its way of encouraging customers to recycle their gift boxes, Origins is making the extra effort this year to design packaging so pretty, you can transform them into cards or Christmas tree decorations. The Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega Relief is an especially meaningful buy since Dr. Weil donates all his after-tax profits to integrative medicine research.

5. Bliss

Stocking stuffers are usually a bit meh. But with a little bit of shopping, you can find great small gifts that are guaranteed crowd-pleasers. Bliss has three of these that anyone would love to receive: Mistletoe Must-Haves, Winter Wonder-Hands, Merry Kiss-Mas, and each is under $20.

So there you have it – my Top 5 beautiful Christmas beauty gift sets that will surely bring a joy to the heart of whoever receives them. My friends, you know what you’ll be getting this Christmas!!! :))

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. She is trying to convince her fiance to buy her this face-slimming gadget she saw at Sephora’s 5th anniversary party for Christmas. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweet.

Beauty & Shopping, Fragrances, Makeup, Malls & Boutiques, Skincare

[Shopping Alert] Beauty Treasures Around The World – Deborah Tan

If you’ve got nothing planned for the weekend, be sure to make your way to TANGS Orchard for “Beauty Treasures Around The World” by L’Oreal Luxury Brands.

Presented to you by brands such as Lancome, Kiehl’s, Biotherm, YSL, Shu Uemura, Giorgio Armani Fragrances, and Clarisonic, this one-of-a-kind beauty event promises to take you on a journey around the world to experience the iconic products of each of the brands mentioned above.

To participate, get your hands on a Boarding Pass.


The super whimsical boarding pass!


Upon presentation of this boarding pass, you will be given a Beauty Passport.

The cover of the Beauty Passport

The cover of the Beauty Passport


Now, your job is to “travel” to the different “destinations” and collect “passport stamps”. To get a passport stamp from a brand, all you have to do is sign up for the experience at its counter. What are the experiences?

Lancome: A 2-minute Aura Service where you’ll be taught how to bring out the glow in your skin

Clarisonic: Get a free hand demonstration using the No. 1 cleansing device recommended by US dermatologists

Kiehl’s: A 5-minute personalised consultation where you’ll also receive 5 complimentary samples!

Shu Uemura: A skincare consultation and a complimentary Eye Or Lash Makeover

Biotherm: A mini eye and hand massage for you. And, for your guy, he’s get a 1-minute power cleansing using Clarisonic and Biotherm Aquapower

Yves Saint Laurent: A signature Ritual Lumiere and your sample of the awesome foundation Le Teint Touche Eclat.

Giorgio Armani Fragrance: A 5-minute scent discovery journey into the world of Armani Prive and a travel fragrance vial upon the completion of this journey

See the super cute Biotherm "passport stamp"?

See the super cute Biotherm “passport stamp”?

And the best part for all beauty junkies out there who refuse to travel out of the country without a decent stash of products for your skin, hair and body, once you get 4 stamps in your Passport, you get to buy a Beauty Box filled to the brim with goodies from the 7 brands for just $20!!!!!!

The stuff every jetsetting beauty junkie needs for just $20!

The stuff every jetsetting beauty junkie needs for just $20!

For just today, October 26: 
These 7 brands will be extending a 10% discount off all their products at TANGS Orchard and Vivocity! Start your Christmas shopping now so you can enjoy insane savings WHILE making sure your loved ones get the best presents money can afford.

There are more great prizes and gifts awaiting you at TANGS Orchard so be sure you get ready for the beauty journey of a lifetime today. This event ends October 31, 2013, so don’t miss it!

Fun trivia! The writers behind the Beauty Passport are none other than Material World’s founders Deborah and Denise. This passport also contains cool ideas on what to do and where to go if you should ever travel to the brand’s city of origins. So be sure you don’t leave TANGS Orchard without grabbing a copy of the Beauty Passport! 

Denise and I wrote the copy for this passport!

Denise and I wrote the copy for this passport!

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, Suits and needs the new grey Clarisonic Mia2 for Christmas. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.


Beauty & Shopping, Branded Content, Infographics, Skincare

[Infographic] The Great Eye Experiment Results – Deborah Tan

Almost a month ago, Material World invited you – our readers – to participate in a survey about your eyes. We were interested in finding out what you thought about your eyes and how you think their appearance affect the way people perceive your age. The response was fantastic and we thank you all for taking part.

Over two weeks, a total of 74 people completed the survey, giving us a glimpse into just how much they know about taking care of their peepers. Many believed that a lack of sleep and staring too long into their computers and smartphones are responsible for their tired, “old-looking” eyes. The truth is something else all together.

The infographic below shows the results of the survey. The survey was done with the support of Biotherm, in conjunction with the launch of their new eye cream. Our respondents did not know they (1) were doing a survey sponsored by Biotherm and (2) were going to be rewarded with a sample of their new eye cream until the second-last question. Of the 74 respondents, 7 of them declined to receive the sample – which is fine. Their answers were still taken into consideration.

So have a look at this infographic and see if you fall in with the majority.


The survey “Great Eye Experiment” and the infographic were done with the support of Biotherm to help raise awareness for their new product Blue Therapy Eye. All opinions expressed by the survey’s respondents are INDEPENDENT of Biotherm and were not vetted by the client. All product information offered are for the purposes of education and awareness.

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweet.

[If you like this story, you’ll love]

1. [Infographic] Get To Know Biotherm’s New Power Serum

2. [Material World x Biotherm] Who Wants Younger Eyes?

3. The 5 Things You Need For Beautiful Eyes

Beauty & Shopping, Branded Content, Contests, Skincare

[Material World x Biotherm] Who Wants Younger Eyes? – Deborah Tan

I’ve always been complacent about my eyes. I have perfect eyesight and, no matter how hard I work, I don’t ever get dark circles. Eyebags? What are they?

When I started lining my eyes regularly, people everywhere complimented me on how much nicer my eyes looked. I thought it would stay that way forever. Obviously, I was being too optimistic. After several years of getting my liquid eyeliner to flick up effortlessly, I started one morning having one of the biggest shocks of my life.

My eyeliner got caught in a sagging right eyelid. It was a sobering moment. My eyes, the crowning glory of my face, were beginning to age.

And so began the daily habit of pulling my right eyelid taut every time I line it. For more than three years now, I have been doing this and have come to accept that my eyes are just on a natural downward spiral. I am growing old, better just accept it.

When Biotherm gave me a “sample” of their new eye cream to try, my first thought was, “Yeah … ok. Maybe it would brighten the area and make my eyes feel less puffy but, let’s not get our hopes first.”

One week later, this was what I saw:

(Left: BEFORE Blue Therapy Eye. Right: AFTER Blue Therapy Eye) Pictures have not been digitally altered.

(Left: BEFORE Blue Therapy Eye. Right: AFTER Blue Therapy Eye) Pictures have not been digitally altered.

1. In the Before picture (left), you can see that my eyelid was sagging down a little. In the After picture (right), the eyelid was “lifted” up and it “lifted” so well, my double eyelid is now more evident. I no longer have to pull my eyelid taut to draw my eyes.

2. The deep crow’s feet at the corner of my right eye has almost disappeared.

[The difference in skin tone is due to changing daylight. Unfortunately, I was unable to replicate the exact lighting when I took the second shot. I used Mother Nature’s light, not a photographer’s]

This eye cream also contains an ingredient that would break up the blood pigment residues responsible for dark eye circles. I do not have obvious dark shadows around my eyes so I cannot say for certain if this cream would help improve that. However, with the awesome results I have seen in the lifting and wrinkle-reducing departments, I am positive this cream will deliver on that too.

What is this eye cream, you ask?

Biotherm Blue Therapy Eye, out today at all Biotherm counters.

Biotherm Blue Therapy Eye, out today at all Biotherm counters.

It’s Biotherm Blue Therapy Eye.

And it hits their counters TODAY.

Like the Blue Therapy Serum, this eye cream contains the three power ingredients that will help restructure and strengthen the skin. In addition to these ingredients, it contains a blend of flavanoid, amino acid and two peptides to help reduce dark circles. Texture-wise, this eye cream is light and is easily absorbed by the skin. It is fragrance-free too, which is important since it will be going near your eyes – you don’t want any irritation.

But like I always say, you’ve got to try it for yourself. Hop down to any Biotherm counter from today to ask for a sample. I promise you won’t regret it.

Biotherm worked with Material World for this post to promote the launch of its new eye cream Blue Therapy Eye. All opinions are the author’s own and have not been vetted by the client. Read our advertising policy here.

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.


We have THREE Biotherm Blue Therapy Eye to give away to you. To enter the draw,
simply follow the instructions below:

1. In the Comments section, complete this sentence: “I hope Biotherm Blue Therapy Eye will be able to _______.”

2. Then click on the Facebook button below and SHARE this review with your friends on Facebook. Tag “Material World” and make sure your post is on Public setting so we can verify you have completed this step.

3. PM us your details (name, age, email, and occupation). State “Blue Therapy Eye” in your message.

Contest ends Friday, 23 August 2013 and is open to all Material World Facebook fans.

[If you like this story, you’ll love]

1. [Infographic] Get To Know Biotherm’s New Power Serum

2. [Material World X Biotherm] Get Skin You’ll Love

3. Beauty Review: Biotherm White D-Tox CC Glow

Beauty & Shopping, Makeup

Beauty Review: Biotherm White D-Tox CC Glow – Deborah Tan

Have you ever heard of the Chinese phrase, “Huang lian po”? Literally, the phrase translates to “Yellow-faced wife” and it refers to women who have aged, and have become “unattractive” to their husbands. Now, there is a scientific explanation for this phenomenon – it’s not just an old wives’ tale.

As we age, our complexions – particularly those of Asians’ – do become yellow. This is a process known as glycation, where the sugar we eat attaches to proteins to form molecules called Advanced Glycation End products (known as AGEs – how appropriate). These AGEs attach themselves to our collagen and elastin fibres, turning them dry and brittle. When the collagen and elastin fibres break, our skin loses its “support structure” and sagging happens. Glycation also turns our collagen fibres yellow, thus along with the lost of firmness, we find ourselves having to endure the fact that our ageing skins are losing the pinkish glow of youth.


Biotherm White D-Tox CC Glow, $62

Another reason why skin turns yellow over time is sun exposure. Ever left a piece of white paper out in the sun for a long time? Well, try it and you’ll see how it turns the paper yellow. As a beauty person, I cannot emphasize enough how important sun protection is to everyone (not just women). And, take it from me, don’t just protect your face. Your neck, your arms, your hands … they need to be protected from the sun too!

BB creams were all the rage at one point in time. They provide not just foundation-like coverage, a lot of them come packed with added benefits like suncare, hydration, whitening, oil-control, etc. The only problem most (I’m not saying all) of them seemed to have was that some people found that BB creams gave their skins a greyish tinge. Enter CC creams – a new generation of multi-tasking base makeup products that – as its name suggests – corrects colour.

[For a good BB cream, you can read my review of one here.]

I was recently given a Biotherm CC cream. Quite interestingly, the brand claims that it does more than “correct colour”. Biotherm’s “CC” means “colour and care”. On top of correcting the colour of your skin tone, the CC cream also hydrates, smoothes, protects and illuminates your skin.

While most CC creams in the market come in various shades of beige, Biotherm’s collection (there are 5 in total) comes in pink, purple, blue, green, and white.

Pink – for glow and radiance
Purple – to even out skin tone and give clarity
Blue – to reduce sallowness
Green – to reduce redness
White – to eliminate dullness and brighten the skin

The CC cream I tried for this review is the pink one – CC Glow.

For those of you with a slight tan (like me), you’ll like it for the following reasons:

1. It does not give you a freakishly white face
2. It gives your skin a healthy pink glow
3. It holds your makeup for longer and has SPF 50+/PA++

What you might not like: the sparkles. I tend to get a bit conscious of anything with sparkles in them so whenever I’m wearing this CC cream, I would dust on a layer of two-way cake so I don’t get mistaken for a member of the Cullen family.

Well, a picture paints a thousand words so here is the Before/After picture:


As you can see, the CC cream corrected the distinct yellow-tone I’m already sporting on my skin. And if you need further proof how I look overall, here is the full-face shot … though please pardon my messy hair and lack of other makeup.This is before any preening and dressing up could be done.


Overall, Biotherm White D-Tox CC Glow has a great texture that makes it comfortable for all-day wear and provides a wonderful base for your makeup.

Biotherm White D-Tox CC creams are now available at all Biotherm counters at $62 each. This CC cream was given to Material World for review purposes, all opinions are the author’s own. You may read our advertising policy here.

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, and Suits. She cringes every time she is shown slides of the glycation process. Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.


Tweet us a picture of you with your favourite beauty product and stand to win a $150 beauty prize! Click on the picture to get to our Twitter account!

Beauty & Shopping, Branded Content, Contests, Skincare

[Material World X Biotherm] Get Skin You’ll Love – Deborah Tan

During my uni days, my group friends and I used to make an annual “pilgrimage” to Tioman during the term break. One year, my sister was dating a guy who was – to put it mildy – obsessed with tanning. He had a really golden, healthy tan, and when you are in your 20s, you think, “Yah, I wanna look like I am sporty, I wanna look like a beach goddess. So … TO HELL WITH THE SUNBLOCK!” Following his lead, we skipped the sunblock that year and used suntan oil with the SPF of a staggering total of 4.

Yep. SPF 4. Our skin peeled away in palm-sized pieces for a good three weeks after.

Now, don’t turn your nose up at this. More than 10 years down the road, I’m paying my skincare debt for this. If you’re sitting less than a feet away from me, you will see my acne scars and the pits left behind by the fiercest of pimples. My skin is easily inflamed. A lot of work is required to keep it “reasonably healthy”.

So I was in Bali last week where I spent a day out at the beach. While everyone was taking in the sun, there I was hiding under a huge beach umbrella, frantically coating myself with sunscreen. I did not get burnt – thank god! – but I still got darker. It’s in my genes. I get a mild sunburn driving from my place to Orchard Road. No kidding!

Biotherm-Aquasource-Deep-Serum-1_highHelp Is Here!
On Tuesday this week, Evelyn from Biotherm introduced the newest baby of the brand’s iconic franchise Aquasource to Material World.

Meet Aquasource Deep Serum.

The serum contains 3 times the concentrations in Life Plankton and Mannose (a naturally-occurring sugar that helps trees store water) compared to Aquasource Gel.

Now, first of all, why use a serum?

You probably know that serum penetrates the skin better and deeper than moisturizer due in part to the fact that its texture is usually lighter. Serums tend to contain more concentrated levels of active ingredients so they are used to amplify the effects of a skincare range. Once the serum is applied, you put on the moisturizer to lock in the goodness.

The same with Aquasource Deep Serum. If you are already a fan of Aquasource moisturizers, you’ll love how the powers of your favourite moisturizer are now more potent and evident with the accompaniment of Aquasource Deep Serum. In fact, in a test of 41 women, 80% of them felt the results of Aquasource were more evident with the use of the serum.

If, like me, you are not a regular Aquasource moisturizer user, you can still reap the benefits of Aquasource Deep Serum. How?

Tuesday To Thursday
For this review I tried the Deep Serum for 3 days.

I stuck with my normal skincare regime, I did not use any mask or go for any facials, and I continued wearing my usual sunscreen.

The picture below shows what a difference 3 days on this serum have made to my skin.

Pictures have not been digitally altered

Pictures have not been digitally altered

The ‘Before’ picture shows my skin as inflamed, slightly red from my week in Bali and a bit dull and dehydrated. And, if you look closer, you can see tiny bumps appearing on the skin as if they are about to erupt into a mini-breakout.

The ‘After’ picture shows how the redness has gone down, and, most importantly, how my acne pits have appeared shallower and less obvious. The ‘After’ picture was also shot at a closer distance, and cropped much tighter. Yet, you can see the texture of the skin has improved dramatically.

The Science Explained
biothermdeepserumSo what happened?

Aquasource Deep Serum has another benefit:

It enhances the efficacy of your existing skincare regime.

Most skincare regimes would follow these steps: Cleanser, Toner, Essence, Serum, Treatment, and Moisturizer. Since Aquasource Deep Serum is supposed to amplify the effects of the products that come after it, I improvised a bit and applied the serum after Toner. The essence I’m using is affectionately known to its fans as “miracle water” because of its skin-regenerative powers. I’ve been using this essence for 5 years so you need to know that it is already part and parcel of what you see in the ‘Before’ picture.

To see if I can give my usual essence a boost, I applied it after the serum for these 3 days, hoping this would help my essence to “penetrate” better and breathe a new lease of life into the way it works for my skin. The experiment (as you can see from above) worked.

What Else? 
In my 3 days of trying this serum, I have found that my skin remains matte and soft even after a day out running errands and going for my meetings. I was at a Volkswagen event on Wednesday where I was at a race track (hot and sunny) for a good half of the day. And still, my skin did not get red and stayed comfortably hydrated and soft.

Paraben- and mineral-oil free, this serum is great for those who want more intensely hydrated skin but worry if a serum is going to make their skins even oilier and shinier. It is also wonderful for those who want their existing skincare to work harder for them.

Biotherm Aquasource Deep Serum is now selling at all Biotherm counters at $85.

Material World worked with Biotherm to review the Deep Serum. All opinions are the author’s own and were not vetted by the client. You may read our advertising policy here

About The Author: Deborah Tan is a founder of Material World. After 10 years of working in magazines Cleo and Cosmopolitan Singapore, she is now a freelance writer/editor who works on this website full-time. She likes liquid eyeliners, bright red lipsticks, tattoos, rock & roll, Mad Men, Suits, and loves it when a new skincare product surprises her … Follow her on Twitter @DebTanTweets.



To win one, simply follow the steps below:
1. In the Comment section, answer this question: “What is Mannose and what does it do in nature?”

2. Share this review on Facebook with your friends. Remember to tag Material World’s Facebook on your post. Make sure your post is set at Public so we can verify that you have completed this step.

3. Remember to Like our Facebook Page. Only Material World’s followers qualify for this contest.

4. Private message us your details – name, age, gender, NRIC, and email address. Remember to state “Biotherm Deep Serum” in your message so we know which contest you’re entering.

Contest ends July 23, Tuesday, 2013.

You can also score a 3-day sample of Biotherm Aquasource Deep Serum! Simply flash this picture at the Biotherm counters at TANGS Orchard and Takashimaya this coming Saturday and Sunday (20 – 21 July, 2013).


Beauty & Shopping, Skincare

Beauty Confidential With The Material World Founders

Between the four of them, they’ve probably tried hundreds of products and received countless pieces of beauty advice. So, which piece of advice really stuck with our founders?

Today, Material World wants to know what is the one skincare step they never ever skip. So who swears by the cleansing oil of Za? Who has thinks Kose Sekkisei‘s sunscreen is da bomb? And who refuses to let go of her Biotherm serum? The answers, below:

Note: The opinions expressed are the founders’ own. The quotes are not an endorsement for any of the products recommended in the story. This story is not in any way paid for by any of the brands mentioned.