Tag Archives: whitening

Naruko Beauty Supplements!

More Naruko goodness!

If you’ve been following for awhile, you’ll have heard all about my love for Naruko Skincare. Otherwise, you can see an overview of the brand here and some reviews on their products here and here!

So yesterday, and you’ll know already if you’re following me on Instagram, I was at an actual Naruko Boutique in Rowland Heights, California, picking up night jellies and I stumbled across these skin supplement drinks they’ve come out with!  One is meant to be taken during the day while the other is meant to be taken at night before bed.

Of course I had to try them!

They are both skin supplement drinks that focus on repairing the skin and encouraging collagen production, but the daytime version focuses on brightening the skin while the nighttime version works to firm the skin while you catch some beauty sleep.  The day one is the Berry Brightening Collagen Drink – Day and the night one is the Lychee Firming Collagen Drink – Night.

I tried the night one last night because, like an overexcited 5 year old, I just couldn’t wait and then I tried the day one this morning.

Firstly, I have to say that the sales rep completely lied on these or she has heinously bad taste. When I asked her what they taste like, she just told me they taste great. Mind you, I’d try them anyway with hopes of boosting collagen, glow and firming my skin up, but these taste like crap. I mean, it may just be personal preference because these remind me of what energy drinks taste like except much more potent and I hate the taste of energy drinks. The taste makes me feel like I’m drinking healthy gasoline because the taste seriously smacks you in the face. It is NOT subtle!

That being said, I think I may invest in a few of these.

I know, I sound kind of like a masochist given I’ve just compared the taste to drinking gasoline, but the vitamins in these are beneficial to skin health and overall bodily health actually.

The day version includes a variety of vitamins, minerals, fruit extracts and brightening plant extracts while the night version includes a similar variety of vitamins, minerals, and berries along with CoQ10 and other plant extracts known to firm and tone the skin.

No real effects seem to be showing up just yet as I’ve only tried them in the past 24 hours, but I do sense a glow in my skin, though that may be due to the 100+ F degree weather we’ve been suffering through here in Cali.

All in all, I still think I’ll try these again as I’m a fan of natural supplements, especially where vanity and skin health is concerned (yeah, I’m shallow like that, problem?). Plus, in the end, I think I’m just like most everyone else when it comes to these miracle drinks – easily pulled in by the promise of eternal youth in a bottle. Then again, maybe I’m alone in this, but at $5 a bottle, it’s not hugely expensive to try a week’s supply and see if I feel, or look, any different. That being said, I think these must be very new because I cannot find them on the Naruko USA website. They only seem to be available in Asia at the moment so I don’t know how they were available at the Naruko Boutique, but if you’d like to try them, you can find a pack of this day + night supplement combo here!

What do you think of beauty supplements?

Are they too gimmicky or have you seen any effects from taking supplements like this?

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way. I purchased these products with my own money and of my own free will! My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

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HABA Samples Giveaway Winner Announcement!

So awhile back, I did this post on HABA Skincare and then announced a giveaway.

Without any more delay, the winner is F00dVentures!

Congrats!

Please email me at storybookapothecary@gmail.com to claim your mini samples!

Get Luminescent Skin with HABA Skincare Products + Samples Giveaway!

I am super familiar with HABA Skincare as I’d tried their products several years ago and I recently had the pleasure of being sent some samples to test out and review for you all.

If you’re unfamiliar, HABA is a luxury Japanese skincare company that utilizes natural ingredients in order to give you the brightest, clearest and most beautiful complexion imaginable.

HABA stands for Health Aid, Beauty Aid, so their goal is ultimately to aid your beauty and your health by using natural ingredients in their products.

Firmly in the luxury skincare category, their products can be very pricey, but a few of them just might be worth the hefty price tag!

Fair Lady Vitamin C Serum

I have tried this before and loved it and the same holds true this time!

This serum feels as light as water, but as moisturizing as any cream without the heaviness on your skin.

It sinks right in an leaves no residue behind.

This serum is meant to brighten the skin, combat skin discoloration and give you the brightest complexion possible.

I really feel it does all this and more!

Given that it is a vitamin C serum, it’s no surprise then that I found it also helped to clear up my breakouts, improves discolorations and dullness, and clear my pores.

It definitely fits the bill and delivers in the whitening skincare category, so if you’re into whitening serums, this is a great one to try that is certainly worth the money to me!

Although it will cost you $68 USD, I really feel it is worth the investment given that a little bit goes a LONG way (I’ve been testing around 2 weeks now and still have more than 3/4 of the serum left in the bottle).

Check it out – here!

G Lotion Toner

I used this toner in routine with the Fair Lady Serum and found it to be just okay.

One great thing about this toner is that it “contains no parabens, flavors, mineral oils, synthesized tar colorings or petrochemical surfactants that can irritate the skin” so it’s certainly a more skin friendly formula and it was quite hydrating to the skin so if you battle dryness, you will probably enjoy this toner.

It feels light, similar to the vitamin C serum, but instead is a bit lighter than the serum and even more water as it’s a toner.

It worked well with this serum and the White Knight Oil Control so I really have no complaints.

I think it has some whitening qualities, though, so I think if you’re into that, you will like this toner as an addition to your whitening or brightening skin regimen.

Check it out – here!

Also, I used to love this toner much more when I had oilier skin a few years ago so if you’re interested in reading that review, check it out on my old blog – here!

White Knight Oil Control Lotion

 This is the last product I tried from HABA, the White Knight Oil Control Lotion.

This really does help to control oiliness in the T zone, calm and hydrate the skin and even works well as a primer for makeup.

It does feel as though it might have some silicone in the formula, but it’s dimethicone, which is said to be a moisturizing ingredient and is considered good to some, bad to others. It really depends on who you speak to. I don’t mind it as long as it doesn’t break me out, which this doesn’t. They also include tea tree oil in the formula so that’s great and the formula is so light so if you have super oily skin, this is a nice moisturizer to use that will not make you look oily or shiny and will help keep your makeup in place while clearing breakouts.

I think that since I am more in the combination skin area now, I get less from this one.

I LOVED this when I first tried it a few years ago back when I was still in the more oily adolescent skin type area, battling oiliness and breakouts, but I really have a more normal to combination type now so I see less results with this one.

Check out my old blog review on it – here!

If you have oily skin and breakouts with lots of oiliness, I think this will definitely be good to invest in!

Check it out – here!

Other products I have tried and loved from HABA include the Micro Cleansing, Deep Moisture Lotion, VC Toner Lotion and the Squa Powder Wash Cleanser (Read review for this on my old blog – here! ).

All in all, I really love HABA’s products. They include a lot of natural ingredients in their formulas and offer products that show results. Over the few weeks I used these products, I did see a difference in the tone of my skin, experienced less breakouts, and overall a smoother complexion. My only real qualm with this company is that the squalane they use is from shark liver, not vegetable, so it’s really an ethical issue at this point of not being cruelty free. If you’re not someone who is bothered by this or to whom it matters much, then power on and try these items because I really enjoyed them and they worked well.

 I think that some of these products may be better served on oilier skin types than mine or someone who is interested in whitening type skin care regimens, but the products still work well for someone trying to brighten skin discolorations, combat T zone oiliness or simply use a gentler skincare line.

Check out their site- here!

And onto the good stuff!

They sent me so many lovely and super generous skincare samples and, while I would love to hoard them all to myself, I definitely think they would be better served if shared with you all!

That being said, it’s mini giveaway time again!

One lucky winner will be given the chance to win some HABA Skincare samples!

Yay!

Check out the Goods!

2 Deluxe Sized Samples Each of the Deep Moisture Lotion and the Micro Force Cleanser!

 Loads of Foil Samples of all the HABA Products including some of the products I reviewed!

PLEASE NOTE: This giveaway is open to any of my subscribers anywhere in the world. Although I received these samples free from HABA Skincare, I will be shipping them out at my own expense so please sign up! I am not rich, but I want to show my appreciation for your support and readership, and I promise you will enjoy these samples!

To Enter: 

  • Must be subscribed to this blog
  • Must be following me on Twitter @SApothecary and Storybook Apothecary on Facebook
  • Must be following @HABA_US on Twitter and HABA USA on Facebook
  • Must Comment Below the product they are most excited to try!
 One Lucky Winner will be Announced Here on 6/28/12!

Have you ever used HABA Skincare before?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the free samples that were sent to me from HABA Skincare to review. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

Naruko Minis Giveaway Winners + A Surprise!

So, my apologies for this rather late announcement.

You see, I had planned to announce the winners at midnight, but then I fell asleep and yeah.

Then today I spent all day at a local lake with friends, got sunburned and yep.

So, I am making up for this!

Without further delay, Here are the Naruko Minis Giveaway Winners:

HealthyFrenchie

Wendy Kroy

AJ’s Mom 

To make up for the late announcement and the fact that I’m feeling quite generous lately, plus the fact that everyone is so keen on trying a night jelly, as a happy surprise, please email me @ StorybookApothecary@gmail.com with a mailing address to claim your mini Naruko samples and let me know which night jelly you most want to try from Naruko.

I know some of you don’t get it in your country so I am going to go to the local shop and get you each a full size night jelly of your choice. Please let me know which one you want to try when you email me your mailing information!

So congrats to the winners of this mini giveaway and stay tuned for the winner of the Rainwater Botanicals giveaway!

If you haven’t signed up for that one yet, you can do so – here!

Night All, I’ll be nursing a sunburn now!

AMPM Wakeup Skin Smooth Washing Powder Review

So if you’re read my recent posts, you know I have been testing out Naruko’s Apple Seed and Tranexamic Acid Collection

Check out the collection review – here.

This is the cleanser I used during the testing of that collection and it is no less impressive!

AMPM Wakeup Skin Smooth Washing Powder

This cleanser is unlike many other typical face cleansers because it comes in powder form.

When mixed with water, it quickly turns into a foaming wash and easily cleanses the skin.

It feels very toning, hydrating and cleansing and leaves the skin clean without drying the skin out.

It smells pretty much like rice, but it’s such a subtle scent that most will not even notice it.

It worked very well with the apple seed and tranexamic acid collection.

It comes out like a grainy powder and then mixes with water into a slightly foaming cleanser.

Although the powder is really grainy in its dry form, it is not abrasive or scratchy at all when you actually mix it with water and apply to your face.

There are not too many foam suds, it is a mixture between a foamy sud and milky type cleanser.

When first purchasing, be sure to remove the little plastic piece under the cap!

You have to remove the lid and pull out the plastic piece to use.

I think they include this for when you want to travel to prevent any powder from leaking out of the container as the pop top is not the most secure, but given that it’s dry powder, even if it did leak a little, it would not do much harm.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, I really like this cleanser.

As far as powder cleansers go, this is among one of my favorites that I have tried.

It feels very much like a hydrating cleanser, but it gives you the clean feeling without drying or making the skin feel tight.

It just feels very hydrating, cleansing and balancing.

I would recommend this to all skin types except super dry types.

Dry skin types may need something more nourishing than this.

Acne prone types will definitely benefit from this cleanser because it is so balancing and it does not dry the skin out.

At $20, this is so affordable.

A little powder goes a long way so the value for the money is great as it will last you a long time.

Check out this cleanser on Naruko’s site – here.

Have you tried any of the AMPM products from Naruko?

Sign up for the mini Naruko giveaway – here!

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the free samples that were sent to me from Naruko Skincare to review. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

Get Glowing Tan Ready Skin for Summer! DIY Brightening Face & Body Scrub

Brown sugar scrubs are super easy to make.

The one that I made today is a bit more complicated, but it’s simply to show how diverse and creative you can get when you make your own body scrub at home.

The First thing you need is, of course, brown sugar.

I used normal kitchen type brown sugar because that’s what I had on hand, but you can use the more crystallized granular raw cane brown sugar if you want. It just depends on the type of consistency that you like.

1/2 – 1 Cup of Brown Sugar

The amount of brown sugar that you use depends on your taste.

If you like a scrub that is more liquidy, I recommend you use 1/2 cup, but if you prefer yours to be more on the dry end then use 1 cup or even 1 1/2 cups.

I recommend you just play around with the amount as you go to get your desired consistency.

1 Tablespoon – Sake / Rice Wine

Many people are not familiar with the incredible brightening powers of rice wine AKA Sake. A very popular ingredient in Asian countries, rice wine and water have been used for centuries to achieve beautifully youthful white skin.

Apparently, it began when women who made sake in old times were discovered to have beautiful bright glowing skin on their hands.

Sake is great for its skin softening properties as well.

If you don’t have sake on hand, you can also use rice water. Simply soak a bowl of rice in water for up to 1 hour, sift out the rice and use the water. This will have similar effects, though no as potent as sake.

If you don’t have any rice or sake on hand at all, vodka may be a good substitute.

Natural Tinctures / Extracts

Natural plant and fruit extracts are also great for brightening the skin.

Just the same as they are used in facial beauty products, so too can they be utilized in your body scrubs.

I chose to use a few drops of the orange peel, papaya and licorice root extracts as all 3 are known for their natural brightening abilities.

If you don’t have any tincture / extracts on hand, feel free to substitute them for lemon, orange, lime or grapefruit juice for similar brightening effects.

1 Tablespoon Each – Natural Fruit Powders

I love using natural fruit and plant powders with my scrubs. They exfoliate gently without being too abrasive and a lot of them also have brightening powers. Raspberry and rose hips powders are both really great choices for brightening scrubs because they are high in vitamin C and other nutrients to help your skin look healthy and glowing. Other great choices include natural willow bark powder (for a more herbal scent!), alfalfa root powder, or rose flower powder.

1/4 – 1/3 Cup Olive Oil

After mixing all of the above ingredients together first, you will want to then add some kind of oil to the mix.

Olive oil is great for its moisturizing properties.

High in EFA’s, or essential fatty acids, olive oil helps to rebuild the skin and protect it from free radicals.

This will leave your skin feeling very moisturized and soft.

If you don’t like olive oil or don’t have it on hand, other choices include grape seed oil, rose hip oil, apricot kernel oil or rice bran oil.

Once you add your oil to the mix, you’re all done!

Be sure to keep this in an airtight container.

Small plastic or glass containers work well or otherwise recycling your old store bought scrub jars is a good idea as well.

This scrub works really well and is gentle enough for both face and body.

Just make sure you apply in gentle, circular motions and don’t press down as this can be too abrasive on the skin.

 

I hope you try and make your own body scrub!

They are surprisingly easy to make and fun to do with friends!

Have you ever made your own scrubs?

Did you find they work as well as store bought ones?

Let me know in the comments!

Be sure to follow my blog for more DIY recipes!

Happy Memorial Day! 

Stay Beautiful

&

I’ll Talk To You Soon : ]