Ohh it's been a while since I've actually been able to do a proper haul - yay employment and feeding into the behemoth that is consumerism! I'm so happy to be back in close enough proximity to buy some of my favourite brands without having to worry about slightly extortionate shipping fees, marking up prices, and no free samples when you pass a certain payment point.
I was pretty damned careful with my money last month, trying to work out what you're general expenses are when you also still have startup costs to worry about it hard, but I ended up spending way less than I thought! So, that means you can treat yo' self, right?
This wasn't all bought in one day (I think I'd cry), it's a collection of some of the bits and pieces I've picked up over the last month - and includes a new brand I've yet to try~
I'll start with an old faithful: etude house. As I've said in posts before, Etude House is a bit of a 'gateway' brand into the world of Korean beauty. It's one of the most accessible brands to purchase, is easily affordable, and is pretty decent quality for the price. It hooks a lot of its fanbase in by being incredibly cutesy in its packaging: princess themed, with lines for older audience being very slick yet still girly. There's a lot of pink, white, and pastel.
Earlier in March I picked up the precious mineral bb cream in matte as I was desperate for a new base product that wasn't going to give me weird tidemarks (I know the struggle isn't half as real as the struggle for cosmetics for women of colour, but a cool toned pale base product seems to be non-existent D:) or a darker face than my neck. I was excited to try this as they've changed the formula since I last purchase this, but I kind of wish I'd picked it up in 'moist' (or whatever the other option is) because ho boy this is drying. It's a decent enough colour match though, I just can't wear it daily. I also received samples of their violet primer. [review: soon.]
The second round at Etude saw me leave with probably a little more than I was planning to spend. I was suckered in by the door girl with free sheetmasks and, well, I ended up with a free gift. WhOOps. The damage wasn't all that horrific, and it was a 'treat yo' self' day, plus the worth of the gift pretty much evens out the expense, so it's swings and roundabouts really.
The items that I actually went in for were the Face Conditioning Cream and the Collagen Eye Patch(es). I've talked about how much I like the Collagen Eye Patches that Etude do before, so it was only a matter of time before I picked some up. They're ₩10000 for 10 (around £7), so ₩1000 each (about 70p), handily packaged. The Face Conditioning Cream is something that I use to lighten base products rather than use it to actually condition my face - it's basically the whitest thing I know doesn't break me out. This is the light version, so it's more like an actual moisturiser, the one that I had in the UK is a much thicker consistency (the blue version). It's SPF25/PA++ so handy to have mixed with a base product that has no SPF. The only problem is it's a whitening product (damn. you. Korea.), so I totally understand if you'd want to skip this. [review: soon]
I also came out with two eyeliners. I love Etude House's eyeliners - especially the 'oh my eye line' liquid liners. They're ₩4000 each (£2.85 ish), so incredibly decently priced, and they do not budge on your face. I've been using up the Rimmel felt tip liners I brought to Korea with me for ease, but I'm still definitely not a fan of felt tip eyeliner. I got the standard black, and also sparkly black, because I'm living life on the beauty edge. [review: soon. thoroughly recommend though.]
The last things are the freebies! Most beauty stores here will draw you in with a free sheetmask in the bottom of your basket - they're usually the cheapest things the stores do, so it makes sense - and sometimes they'll actually coerce you into the store. When you spend over a certain price point (depending on the shop) you get free gifts! Samples usually depend on how much you spend, but can also depend on how nice your cashier is feeling, or which lines you've bought from. My free sheetmask was blueberry, which I'm super happy about, I do love a good berry mask, and my free gift for spending money was the Soon Jung sample set, with some Precious Mineral BB cream sachets. The Soon Jung line seems to be fairly affordable for the full sized products (though there are a lot of them...) so if I like these samples I might actually end up with some regular versions! [review: soon]
Another brand that I'm really growing to love is A'pieu. It's the younger sister brand of Missha, and has a real focus towards skincare. Almost all of the makeup products include some form of extract to help manage, or reduce some skin ailment or other. I've also been really inspired by Jasmine over at Kkochsongi to try more A'pieu products, so here we are!
All of these are pretty new to me, I was actually looking for their air fit cushion compact that I reviewed a while ago now, but they didn't have it in my shade and I needed to get back home for work rather than have a lovely shop assistant scour the rest of the A'peiu's for me. So instead I decided to try something different.
I picked up the A'pieu dark circle brightener, which is a little correcting concealer type pen in a peachy tone. It has a cushion applicator, and so far I'm really enjoying using it. I've had so many problems with Western versions of the clicky-type concealers, you know the ones where you either push the end opposite to the applicator up, or twist it, they never work for me, but no issue with Korean ones! There are a few other correcting colours in this A'pieu line, so I might pick up some others. [review: soon]
The second item I got was the A'pieu bad eye eye cream, and first up I love the packaging design for this! It's so cute. I'm excited to try it. [review: soon]
I also noticed that A'pieu does two types of makeup brush cleansers now too! They have a balm/soap type in a tin, and this mist. I've been looking for something to clean my brushes with, and since makeup tools like brushes are now way more popular in Korea, it's nice to see some really affordable products to use. I picked it up to test and so far it does a great job of cleaning up my brushes. [review: soon.]
I actually managed to swatch a lot of the base and concealer shades this time, and... welp, looks like I probably won't be getting any of them any time soon. So I decided to try something from their new spring line: 3ce studio blur filter powder in pale. It's a duo toned powder, and the shades in the pale version are mint green and lavender. The peachy version has warmer tones. I'm excited to give this a whirl and see if it does have a 'blur filter' effect! [review: soon]
I'm really happy that I decided to pop in though - it looks like they might actually carry a base product that is pale enough for me! Which I will probably be trying out in due course once I've worked my way through everything else, I decided to pick up the peach effect cover, which has PINK UNDERTONES. PRAISE THE LORD FOR COOL TONED PRODUCTS. I was also given fab purchase gifts, two sheetmasks and a cute tote bag!
From skinfood I picked up my favourite (and only brand of) makeup wipes that I buy - these are the honey flour moist version in the smallest pack they do, and are so handy to have on the go. They're not drying, and they don't break me out.
The Face Shop Rice Water Cleansing Milk:
My current cleansing oil is on its way out, so I decided to pick this up in The Face Shops' sale in anticipation of panic buying when I needed. I haven't tried a cleansing milk before, so I thought it'd be interesting to give it a go. [review: soon]