Quality Time with my Anti-Aging 3 Memebox: a Superbox #50 Unboxing & Review

I write this from my sickbed where this lovely box was just hand-delivered to me by my even lovelier husband who picked it up from the post office for me. Of course, it made me feel instantly better. Must have been the Tibetan Mushroom. It just sounds like it should have magical properties.

This was one of the first Memeboxes I had purchased, as anti-aging was a top priority when I determined to focus on myself and my skincare. I was not disappointed!

Yes, I'm opening and trying all this in bed.

Yes, I’m opening and trying all this in bed.

 The box contains six full-sized products. Let’s take a look at each one, shall we?


Pro You S Wrinkle SC Renewal Cream 

(100g, RV $96 – in the Memeshop currently for $56)

The regenerative power of EGF, peptides, and adenosine support natural cell renewal to improve skin structure and enhance the overall look of skin. Peptides nourish the skin and reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles as firmness and elasticity are restored. Free of paraben, imidazolidinyl urea, triethanolamide, alcohol, and artificial coloring. Skin is left renewed, smoother, and more radiant. Contains adenosine, EGF, amino peptides, kerasgen.

Impressions: I very much like this cream’s texture. It’s well… creamy, without being heavy like the Dermahouse Collagen Firming Cream. The scent is a barely-there, fresh fragrance and it absorbs very well and quickly with a clean finish. I mentioned in my review of the Collagen Cosmetics Box that adenosine was my new jam. I’ve now very excited to see that listed as an ingredient in any of my products. This one also contains EGF – epidermal growth factor – which is said to stimulate cell growth. Peptides are the building blocks of proteins and one important protein that begins to break down as we age is collagen. Peptides can signal our body to begin producing collagen again. Yes, please! Kerasgen I’ve largely only seen used in Asian skincare and it’s supposed to help the skin restore it’s natural defenses and keep it looking supple. This truly reads like a powerhouse of ingredients and I’m very excited to begin using this cream regularly.


Pro You Lip & Eye Wrinkle Spot Cream

(15g, RV $30 – in the Memeshop currently for $18)

This product features a blend of powerful anti-aging ingredients created especially for the eye and lip areas. It helps to reduce the appearance of deep and fine eye wrinkles from the first application and diminishes the appearance of lines, crow’s feet, and other skin creases around the eyes and lips. Advanced technology leaves the delicate eye-area and lip-area looking firmer, softer, smoother, and years younger. Reduces the appearance of fines lines and wrinkles around the eye and lip areas. Contains adenosine, actiflow, and peptides.

Impressions: This item has a very unique applicator, so you squeeze out some product and then use the little pad to massage into the offending area. For me, this will fall into the preventative measures category. I’m quite eager to begin using it, even though I don’t yet have wrinkles or sagging (knock on wood). I do hope to keep it that way for a while and this should certainly help. We covered most of these ingredients above, but Actiflow was new to me. Apparently it’s rich in oligosaccharides purified from yeast and remodels the capillary network by stimulating the neovascularization and by increasing the capillary resistance. In plain English terms, I believe this is actually supposed to reduce the pooling that can lead to puffiness and bags. After researching this a bit, I will definitely be applying this to my under-eye area and seeing what happens. Stay tuned!


Pro You Multi White & Wrinkle Ampoule Dual Set

(2ml x 8ea, RV $48 – in Memeshop currently for $28)

This potent whitening and anti-wrinkle formula helps to restore the skin’s radiance and delivers a firmer, tighter, and more toned appearance. It also strengthens even the most fragile skin textures, softens facial contours, visibly minimizes fine lines and deep wrinkles, and unveils skin’s youthful radiance. This is a day & night ampoule set made for addressing different skincare issues – controlling sebum and enlarged pores during the day, and maintaining skin elasticity overnight. Both ampoules work to fight signs of aging with their adenosine-based formula for treating fine lines and wrinkles and offering a lifting effect to the skin.

Impressions: Unfortunately ingredient information for this item is lacking beyond the fact that the ampoules are adenosine-based, though that’s essentially good enough for me. Ampoules typically have very few ingredients in very concentrated quantities and, as a reminder from my Collagen Cosmetics post, adenosine is a molecule that naturally exists in skin’s DNA and is essential to proper cell function. It has anti-inflammatory properties and stimulates protein synthesis. I love the packaging for this one as well (not shown are the tiny, glass bottles within). I am most looking forward to seeing what the day ampoule can do for me as I have a recurring problem with sebum in my T-zone.


Tosowoong Super BB Cream (50ml, RV $12)

Tosowoong’s Super BB Cream contains a UV protection level of SPF 15 and glides onto skin nice and smoothly for a perfect no makeup look. It works to cover up skin imperfections and enhance skin firmness all at once.

Impressions: When I initially saw this box, I was perplexed by the exclusion of sunblock. Most experts will tell you that sun protection is the absolute best way to guard yourself against the signs of aging. Now, I’m not displeased in the slightest that I was sent a BB cream, but I would have thought that this theme warranted one with a higher SPF. However, taking the season into account (we’re just embarking on Fall) it may be that SPF 15 will do the trick. Either way, I do really like the look of this BB cream. It’s a darker shade than the Missha I use currently, glides on smoothly, blends well with my skin, and leaves a nice, even coverage. The scent right out of the bottle struck me as slightly unpleasant (a little “chemically”), but I noticed that once I rubbed a test dollop on my hand, it dissipated to a nice subtle scent. I prefer this packaging to the Missha BB because, although this looks cheaper, the pump on the Missha can be cumbersome whereas this tube allows you to easily dispense as needed.


Simply When Present Perfect Mask (20g x 3ea, RV $11)

     Simply When Present Perfect Masks are just the thing you need when your skin feels dry, rough, and aging! It’ll deliver intense skin revitalization and firmness in one easy go. Contains adenosine, mango extract, and green tea extract.

Impressions: Apparently I can never have too many sheet masks because the sheer volume I’ve collected over the past couple of weeks assures me that I will never have to go without. You can find my reviews of some of them here. These particular masks should help with firmness and hydrations, which is sure to be necessary and lovely as we get into the colder months and my skin goes from combination to desert wasteland. I really appreciate that Memebox included three of the same mask in this box, as this will really allow me to properly gauge their effectiveness.


  

Seatree Tibet Mushroom Neck Cream (45ml, RV $12)

Infuse young vitality and suppleness to your sagging neck area with this adenosine-rich neck cream containing various organic ferments such as Tibet mushroom (kefir), pharbitis, paeonia japonica, and lactic acids. Firm up those lines and wrinkles by delivering deep nutrition and brightening up dull, roughened skin.

Impressions: When I first began seeing information about this box crop up online, THIS was the item that got me probably overly excited. While I like to incessantly remind my readers that I don’t yet have any wrinkles (I’m going to milk this one dry!), my neck is a bit of a different story. It’s common knowledge that this is one of the areas that shows the earliest signs of aging, so I am really eager to get a jump on the wrinkling I’m beginning to see there… and beat it into submission. This product is quite lovely, from the pink packaging to the light cream that’s almost a serum consistency. However, it’s not so liquid that it doesn’t provide nice, even coverage when applied. The fragrance is light and floral. This stuff makes me happy.


Overall Impressions

I am incredibly pleased with this box. I paid $46 (including shipping) and purchased it as part of a referral deal, so I received 3 memepoints back as well. The value, according to Memebox is $209. But by my calculations, it’s likely closer to $130, based on current pricing. That doesn’t phase me in the slightest as I will happily be keeping and using every single item in this box.

September Discount Codes

Use 41P2 with my link for $5 off any order

AFFILIATE-9345-SP9Q3-LHJQ for $5 off an order of $100 or more

AFFILIATE-7082-UMNFY-QUJO for $10 off an order of $150 or more

All Up In My Face: A Dewytree Black Sheet Mask Review

Until a few of weeks ago, the term “sheet mask” was not in my vocabulary. But as with any good relationship, Memebox brought new and wondrous things into my life. While I have tried other brands of sheet masks, I wanted to focus this entry on my first purchase from the Memeshop: a variety of Dewytree Black Sheet Masks. These masks were a winner of Marie Claire Korea’s Smart Beauty Award in 2013. How can I resist that kind of resounding recommendation? I’m also intrigued by all things Dewytree having loved their serum from my Collagen Cosmetics Memebox. My parcel arrived quite quickly – a total of 4 weekdays from purchase – and the package was adorable.

Exhibit A.

Exhibit A.

I love the hot pink MEMEBOX tape, pink packing peanuts (I don’t know why this pleases me, but it does), and sample goodies! In addition to my masks, I received three packets of Missha BB Cream, a postcard, and sticker. I’m pretty tempted to actually put the latter on my car, so that my fellow Memebox addicts and I can spot each other in the wild.

Ok, on to the masks! I picked up two of each variety: Honey Moist, Deep Detox, Ginseng Nutritious, and Premium Syn-ake.


Honey Moist Black Mask (30g, RV $3)
Can be purchased on Amazon

A soft, ultra-moisturizing black facial mask containing Brassica campestris honey from Jeju Island. Ideal for dry skin. Immediately moisturizes skin with honey ingredient, removes impurities and dead cells

Thoughts: I had recently purchased Lanocreme Manuka Honey Face Masks from New Zealand and am very eager to see how these compare. This seems like a mask that will address a number of my skin issues, particularly as it gets colder and drier here.

Experience: I had very high hopes – particularly considering how much people seem to love these masks – and maybe this will be blasphemy to some of them, but I just did not love this one. It may have been my experience with the Lanocreme mask that spoiled me because I couldn’t help but to compare the two since they both listed honey as the “main” ingredient (more on that later) and aimed at hydration. Upon opening the package, the stark differences hit you. Whereas the Lanocreme sheet is saturated in a sumptuous white cream that stays put throughout face time, the serum on the Honey Moist Mask was much more liquid – almost ampoule-like – which initially gave me some hope even though it was kind of messy. But then I reviewed the ingredients :/ The first four are Water, Glycerin, Butelene Glycol, and ALCOHOL. Anything honey-related doesn’t come along until ingredient #11. My hope was quickly waning (alcohol in a hydrating product??), but I persevered. I left the mask on for about 30 minutes and certainly wouldn’t say that the results were awful, but meh might be appropriate. The Lanocreme Manuka Honey Mask left my face feeling amazingly soft and hydrated, and my pores tight. The whole experience felt luxurious. In comparison, the Dewytree Honey Moist Black Mask reminded me of the typically American product fair – I guess I look more… moist now? I will be following up with a more extensive review of what is obviously the better product, but here is a photo, for reference:

My one and only.

My one and only ❤


Deep Detox Black Mask (30g, RV $3)
Can be purchased on Amazon

Digs deep into pores and absorbs impurities, removes dead skin cells, controls excess sebum, improves skin elasticity. Contains JEJU Volanic Ash Clay, Charcoal powder, Papaya extract, Grapefruit extract, Walnut shell powder, Centella Asiatica Extract

Thoughts: Again, this mask is hitting some of my trouble spots, so I am excited to see what it can do. I’m also eager to compare this one to another Volcanic Ash Mask that I’ve really grown to love: the Spa Life Hydrating Facial Mask with Volcanic Ash + CoQ10. I have now tried this mask and am happy to report the experience was much more pleasurable than with the Honey Moist variety. After removal, it was evident that it had cleared out some impurities and it also left my face glowing. The serum absorbed well and fairly quickly, so my face wasn’t totally saturated after the 30 minutes or so that I left it on. I did keep myself busy while the remainder of the serum absorbed and then went on with my nightly routine. In comparison to the Spa Life Volcanic Ash mask, I must admit that I still prefer the Spa Life a bit more, but would happily purchase this one again.


Ginseng Nutritious Black Mask (30g, RV $3)
Can be purchased on Amazon

 Nourishes skin with ingredients for resilience and vitality, soothes and brightens skin, removes impurities and dead cells, strengthens skin elasticity. Contains Ginseng root extract, Ginkgo Bioba Leaf extract, Betaine, Trehalose, Hydrolyzed Collagen

Thoughts: I have a point of reference for this one as well, having tried the Naisture Ginseng Mask. I wouldn’t say that I adored that one as much as the others mentioned above, so I was very curious to see how this one stacked up. Unfortunately, this contest was too close to call. This mask was quite nice and left my skin hydrated, though I would be hard-pressed to see evidence of the brightening and skin-clearing properties the mask lauded. I did enjoy the mask overall and was reminded again as to how much I like the fit of these. The Detox variety remains my favorite and, in my opinion, the stand-out of the line. 


Premium Syn-ake Black Mask (30g, RV $3)
Can be purchased on Amazon

Smooth out wrinkles, restores fullness to aging skin, removes impurities and dead cells, brightens skin tone. Contains Syn-Ake (peptide found in the venom of snake), Caviar, Centella Asiatica Extract, Adenosine 

Thoughts: Anti-aging cosmetics are often hard to gauge. So much of their efficacy is dependent on their being a preventative measure, so it’s not as though you a mask such as this could provide any sort of visible results unless you choose to use one daily. I’m all for preventative measures though, so I happily slapped this baby on. I use a Syn-ake serum nightly and was pleased for this additional, concentrated dose of the stuff. Is it doing anything for me? I honestly have no idea. I don’t have visible wrinkles I can monitor. But it was a nice enough mask that left my face feeling hydrated looking slightly brighter.


Summary

There are a few things I like about this line and those are the fun/black sheet color, the excellent fit, and the Detox mask. Since only 1 out of 3 has anything to do with the efficacy of the masks, I think the bottom line here is grab the Detox or skip it entirely. I have tried other masks (some of which are noted above and others I will be reviewing in the near future) that are more worthwhile of your time and money.

Quality Time with my Collagen Cosmetics Memebox: a Superbox #33 Review

As mentioned in a previous post, this was the first Memebox that grabbed my attention and fostered in me a rabid desire nothing else seems to satiate. I’ve now had a couple of weeks with the Collagen box and wanted to share my impressions so far.

To start off, what peaked my interest in this particular box was the distressing knowledge that the loss and breakdown of collagen in the dermal layer of skin is partially responsible for our losing elasticity and firmness as we age; leading to thinning skin, wrinkles, and sagging. Collagen is our structural support. All I can picture are the Doozers and their sticks from Fraggle Rock – all lovingly and mindfully constructed into our perfect skin and then age comes along like an awful, heedless Fraggle and just ravishes the lot.

Dramatization.

What, you don’t think of your skincare in terms of 80s children’s tv? Moving on.

Here is how Memebox described this box:

Did you know that collagen production, the main protein responsible for keeping skin firm and supple, slows downs as soon as you hit your early 20s? DUN-DUN-DUN!

No worries because we’ve got the Collagen Box to stop sagging skin and wrinkles in its tracks! Our box is filled with collagen infused products which are clinically proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and our fast acting formulas fight the loss of resilience in skin and plumps skin by supporting collagen production.

It is safe to say that you can never do with too many collagen-enriched products; they illuminate and firm the skin, fill up any fine lines, wrinkles, and acne scars, all while helping to maintain perfect elasticity.

Here’s the thing though – collagen within a skincare product doesn’t have any affect on our collagen production. I know! I can’t believe this relationship is beginning with lies. The collagen molecule is too large to be absorbed and we must use other means if we want to naturally boost what age diminishes. However, collagen is an amazing moisturizing ingredient. It holds the skin’s natural hydration and keeps it looking soft and plump. My preference is to look plump in this context rather than others. My skin was in desperate need of some rehydration so I happily parted with my $42 (including standard shipping) – 14 days later, my goodies were in hand!

The beginning of the end.

The beginning of the end.

The first thing that struck me was the heavenly aroma wafting out of the box as I opened it. I knew this was going to be the start of something very special.


Item #1: Ramosu Carestory Collagen Extract 100, 10ml (RV $36)

From Memebox:

Infused with over 17 different amino acids, this 100% concentrated Collagen Ampoule will deliver intense hydration and facilitate cell regeneration for more supple and firmed up baby-skin. Also, it doesn’t smell or feel sticky like your average collagen products, and instead it glides onto the skin refreshingly. Experience the wonders of the real Collagen Ampoule currently being used in Korean aesthetic beauty salons.

Impressions: Amino acids! This was exciting because those are proteins that actually CAN boost collagen production. True to the description, this ampoule is neither sticky or stinky. It absorbs very quickly and without residue. Memebox instructions state to use a couple of drops, but I’ve been using at least five to get full coverage on my face.


Item #2: Dermahouse Collagen Firming Cream, 30ml (RV $29)

From Memebox:

The abundant collagen, shea butter, and mango shea butter ingredients in the Collage Firming Cream work to lock in moisture and deliver beneficial nutrients deep down into your skin. With continuous use, you’ll experience disappearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improvement in the skin texture and clarity.

Impressions: The last sentence there struck me as somewhat dubious. While incredibly moisturizing, I just don’t see which ingredients could possibly lend themselves to delivering on those claims or the “firming” reference in the name. I initially really liked the hydrating qualities of this product, but quickly realized that it was too heavy for my combination skin. Within a couple of hours of application, my forehead would be gleaming rather than glowing. I plan to either try this again in the winter or just use it on my neck and body rather than face.


Item #3: Dewytree Real Collagen Nutrition Serum, 50ml (RV $39)

From Memebox:

A deeply moisturizing and nourishing facial serum infused with high concentrates of collagen, Dewytree’s popular Real Collagen Nutrition Serum treats enlarged pores, sagging skin, and signs of aging with its highly moist and nutritious formula which instigate skin regeneration and renewal.

Impressions: Ahhh this was the source of that glorious smell. That alone made me instantly fall in love with this product. In addition to the collagen, it contains hyaluronic acid, trehalose and argan oil. Again, not 100% sold on the aforementioned claims, but this product has certainly kept my skin bright and feeling nourished. It has a beautifully light texture that absorbs well, and lovely packaging.


Item #4: 3W Clinic Collagen Make-up Base, 50ml (RV $30)

From Memebox:

This silicon type Collagen Make-up Base contains blemish-control powder components for matting out and preparing the skin condition before foundation application. The high level of adherence and long-lasting formula helps maintain your makeup silky smooth all day long.

Impressions: Very nice make-up base that aids in hydration and dries to a powder finish. I’m a big fan of the greenish tone to counteract any redness in the skin. It definitely helps to keep my makeup where it should be, but I’ve also used it on its own when I didn’t want to wear makeup, but still desired that little bit of blemish control and an even skin tone. My one complaint is that I’ve learned to be incredibly careful when dispensing this product because it really just wants to all come out to party.


Item # 5: The Skin House Wrinkle Collagen Free Spot, 30ml (RV $28)

From Memebox:

This wrinkle-care product is packed with collagen and adenosine components for delivering deep, intense nourishment to the skin and nullify the signs of aging by filling in between fine lines and wrinkles. This is not an eye-only cream; it can be applied anywhere else on your skin with visible lines and wrinkles.

Impressions: Adenosine! Another exciting ingredient. I’ve recently read an overview of a study expounding on the benefits of adenosine in the diminishment of wrinkles. While I have essentially no wrinkles to speak of, I do believe in taking preventative measures! So I can’t speak too much as to the effectiveness of this product, but no wrinkles have developed since I began using it 😉 It has a wonderfully rich consistency and I really like that it’s not just an eye cream, but can be used on any problem areas.


Item $6: abelle So Hot-Burning Concentrate Ampoule, 20ml (RV $24)

From Memebox:

A unique hair ampoule that warms up all by itself and absorbs deeply into your hair, this highly concentrated ampoule is made from E.G.F, hydrolyzed keratin, hydrolyzed collagen, and hydrolyzed silk which all work to strengthen the hair cuticle and make your hair shine with a natural glow.

Impressions: I am very intrigued by this product, as it seems an excellent deep-conditioning treatment. However, the logistics of shampooing and rinsing my hair, then applying this along with a shower cap and “resting” for 15 minutes just escape me. Do I get out of the shower? Do I just make myself comfortable? This probably shouldn’t be that complicated and I do plan to try this product once I figure it out and have time for an extended shower sesh.


Overall Impressions

The full retail value of this box – as told by Memebox – is $186. Even leaving room for inflation, this box is an excellent value. I have been using almost all the products in it and will continue to do so. While I wasn’t thrilled that Memebox was somewhat perpetuating the myth that collagen products might restore or bolster the production of our own, naturally-occurring collagen, they included products with some other ingredients that may actually aid in this regard. Overall, I’m quite happy with my first box and look forward to the many I have in queue!

Go on, give it a go!

September Discount Codes

Use 41P2 with my link for $5 off any order

AFFILIATE-9345-SP9Q3-LHJQ for $5 off an order of $100 or more

AFFILIATE-7082-UMNFY-QUJO for $10 off an order of $150 or more

“Very deep. You should send that in to the Reader’s Digest. They’ve got a page for people like you.”

One of the most fulfilling realizations I’ve come to as I began this journey is that I was doing it for me, and me alone. I didn’t panic at the thought of getting older or evidence of that creeping into what I saw in the mirror. I chose, instead, to congratulate myself with the gift of love and attention.

It’s unfortunate that we don’t do that nearly as often as we should. Focusing on one’s appearance comes with so many negative connotations in this day and age; most entirely justified. From the time we are small, women especially, are bombarded with conceptions of an unattainable standard. We grow up obsessed with body image and how others see us; distracted from nurturing the beauty within. By the time we are old enough to know better, a focus on appearance is oftentimes viewed simply as vain and shallow… frivolous.

Well, it has taken me some time, but I see the immense sensibility in focus on self; the joy in something as simple as trying a new lipstick – fire engine red, of course 🙂


“If you can think of times in your life that you’ve treated people with extraordinary decency and love, and pure uninterested concern, just because they were valuable as human beings. The ability to do that with ourselves. To treat ourselves the way we would treat a really good, precious friend. Or a tiny child of ours that we absolutely loved more than life itself. And I think it’s probably possible to achieve that. I think part of the job we’re here for is to learn how to do it.”

David Foster Wallace

Descent into the K-Hole: My Hard and Fast Love-affair with a Korean Beauty Box

It all happened so fast.

The buzz in the world of beauty lately has been all about subscription boxes. Ipsy, Birchbox, Glossybox, Beauty Fix… the possibilities are endless. Never being one to act impulsively with so much qualitative data at my disposal, I took my time to ensure I chose the perfect one for me. And then… into my life came, Memebox.

My first taste of Korea’s number-one, online beauty retailer came while exploring another blog: A Year of Boxes’ “Memebox SuperBox #33 Collagen” review. My excitement as I read this review was palatable and only grew as I went on the Memebox site and found this Collage box to still be available (alas, it is now sold out). Of course, I snagged it on the spot… in addition to two others: Anti-Aging 3 and Global #17. Since then six… SIX more boxes have been purchased and are being eagerly anticipated. Do I have a problem? More than likely. But how can something so right ever be wrong?

The beauty (pun intended) of this service is multi-faceted:

  • you don’t have to sign on for a monthly subscription. Boxes are released continuously and you can purchase as many or as few as appeal to you, at any time (though many sell out fast!)
  • unlike other subscriptions, you aren’t entirely blind as to what you might receive in each box. Memeboxes have themes, though the overall content is typically a surprise (which I think is wonderful – who doesn’t love presents?! Even if you did buy them yourself. Let me be the first to say – you deserve it!) So, to a degree, you can still personalize your purchase based on interests and needs.
  • Asian cosmetics are seemingly much more effective than American brands. Just a basic review of ingredients in their products demonstrates this, but I’ve already found it to be the case in my own, brief experience.
  • also unlike most other subscriptions, with Memebox, you receive mostly FULL-SIZED products. This was the thing that really pulled me in. The value you receive for your investment is just incredible – even if Memebox inflates RTV.

In future posts, I am very excited to bring you unboxings and reviews of these products. I encourage you to check out Memebox for yourself and let me know your thoughts… or prior experience, since I know many of you would likely consider me late to the party 😉

And off we go…

Coming into my early 30s, the realization dawned on me that all those things that used to come very easily – glowing complexion, smooth skin, a steady metabolism, etc.., – were now going to be harder to come by. This blog was created so that others might share in my journey of discovering what beauty means at this stage of life… and those to come. 

Welcome! I so much look forward to hearing from others; your input and what I’m sure will be invaluable advice.