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What is an essence and why do I need it? It depends on who you ask. The description I like most is: a lighter, more watery serum. Adding this step is a great idea for anyone, but it is especially wonderful for someone with dry skin. Products absorb better when moisture is present in the skin. An essence not only adds nutrients to the skin, but the watery consistency assists in letting all the products applied after penetrate more deeply. A moisturizing toner also assists in providing that moisture base to help other products absorb, but it lacks the powerful ingredients available in most essences.
Dry, aging skin is a constant battle. I added an essence into my skincare routine December of 2015 after discussing them with Megan at Essentielle Beauty. Since my skincare routine changed, I want to go over it. After cleansing, I apply a hydrating toner. Applying everything else to slightly damp skin helps to lock moisture into my skin. An AHA or BHA liquid comes next. Keeping my skin flake free and unclogged helps my products penetrate my skin. Then, I apply my essence. In December of 2017, I added a moisture boost serum after my essence. That gets followed by a Vitamin C serum, an eye serum, a dark spot serum (only where needed), an eye cream, a face cream, and an oil (when needed).
Even with 10 or 11 steps in my routine, it never feels like too much. For some, this may seem extremely excessive. Play around with products until you find the right formula for your skin. As long as you are applying everything from thinnest to thickest consistency, everything should get absorbed. If your skin feels too heavy, cut steps or change products. Should your skin feel too dry, considering adding some of the steps I mentioned above.
I started this series with four essences I wanted to test out: SKII Facial Treatment Essence, the Iope Bio Essence Intensive Conditioning, this one, and the Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence. The SKII is one I love, the Iope is one I disliked, and I will review the Secret Key next. Since I started this series, I’ve collected more essences. It is possible I may extend the series to go over each one. An Essence really is a great step to add into a skincare routine so I can see dedicating an article to each one I try.
The Original Raw Chan-mool Patting Essence retails for $24.99. It is a patting essence, but it has an absolutely beautiful mist. Until the bottle struggles to spray, it will mist the perfect amount of product on your face. I never patted it in (as an essence) until the end. Since I’ve used it as a spray and with patting, I can say without a doubt, I prefer misting to patting. It helps my skin feel more hydrated and the other products that follow this feel like they penetrate deeper. This worked so wonderfully that I am thinking of putting all future essences into mist bottles.
That revelation helped me realize this would be an excellent face mist. I do believe in patting in face mists, because they can dry out the skin if you leave your skin wet with nothing on top to lock the moisture down. Should you put something on top without washing your face again, you would be locking in dirt and germs, too. So, make sure you pat it in if you use this as a face mist. While I do not face mist often, it is particularly wonderful on a hot sweaty day or after a sunburn. The price makes this a mist I can get behind, too.
This is a gel, but it is very lightweight and feels like thick water. With the mist, it feels thinner than my serums so I have no problem applying this before them. My skin always feels soft and moisturized. This should improve elasticity in the skin over time, but after using an entire 3.4oz bottle, I am not sure I noticed a change. Considering the mist helps a little of this product go a long way, a bottle this size lasts for a while.
The SKII promises huge anti-aging results over time and leaves my skin with the same soft smooth feeling, but this one costs a lot less. Those on a budget can try this and see if they love it as much as I do. Since they both leave my skin feeling soft and moisturized, I am going to give the edge to the one with the anti-aging claims. Thus, SKII is still winning in the battle of the essences.