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Thursday, 28 February 2019

[THE YOPPPA GARDEN] - Stem Cell Pure Blood EX

A few months ago, I had the pleasure of meeting the co-owner of a local K-Beauty shop! The shop is called Goryeo Beauty and it is run by Marina and her partner. I really enjoyed talking with her, as I can see how passionate she is about Korean skincare and wants to share the different brands with everyone. She carries some of the bigger brands, but also some indie and upcoming brands. One of such brands is the Yoppa Garden. Marina kindly provided me with their Stem Cell Pure Blood EX essence to test out. So let's move forward with the review

While I received this essence complimentary from Goryeo Beauty, all opinion stated is my honest opinion.

COMPANY BACKGROUND

I tried to look up the brand, The Yoppa Garden, but unfortunately cannot find anything about it.

FUNCTION

There wasn't much description available on the packaging but I found some online. So it is marketed as a restorative essence, having multiple functions besides hydration. It includes brightening and reducing the appearances of dark spots. As well as soften and aid the regeneration of the skin.

PACKAGING 

The Stem Cell Pure Blood EX essence comes in a nice medicinal looking bottle that houses 100ml of the product. It also comes in a refill pouch that looks like a blood pack! 😆 It's quite cute! Kind of fits with the product's name.

The essence is a biphased product, with the water based solution coloured red to represent the blood cells, and the oil layer to represent the blood plasma. They are really playing into the whole blood theme eh? The water based solution to hydrate the skin while the oil layer is to lock in that hydration.

INGREDIENTS 

Rosa Damascena FLower Water, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Niacinamide, 1,2-Hexanediol, Methylpropanediol, Sodium Chloride, Human Stem Cell Conditioned Media (500ppm), Acetyle Hexapeptide-8, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (licorice) Root Extract, Zingiber Officianle (Ginger) Root Extract, Schisandra Chinensis Fruit Extract, Coptis Chinensis Root Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Asiaticoside, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Caprylyl Glycol, Propolis Wax, Panthenol, Adenosine, CI 17200, CI 19140, CI 15510, CI 42090

CosDNA

The analysis of the ingredients list is actually clean, the last few ingredients, which are the pigments for the water phase, has a slightly higher safety listing but it's nothing to worry about. I am actually pretty surprised by that. This should be mild for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

The craziest ingredient in there, which freaked me out, and I am sure others will too. It is the Human Stem Cell Conditioned Media. There's absolutely no information on it online besides studies about how the usage of it helps with microneedling. Thankfully, KindofStephen is really nice and explained to me that it does not contain human stem cells at all. It is in fact the solution that they grow in. So think of it as the media that cells grow in a petri dish. Phew.. It's not scary at all! It is there to be a moisturizer and also provides the shock value.

SCENT

Marina knows how much I love roses, seriously, I declare my undying love for roses quite often, it's hard to miss. That's why she decided to give me the essence to test out. So when I saw that rose water is the first ingredients, I was excited! Roses! Rose water! It must smell like roses right?!

But sadly, it doesn't. It barely smells. I thought it was perhaps the oil layer blocking the scent but no. The water phase does not smell like roses at all. That makes me so sad. But it's not a deal breaker.

PERFORMANCE

I decided to test on only half of my face so I can tell the difference. I used it on the right side of my face, where it is more dry due to me sleeping on that side. I decided to use the right side, as I feel that if I use it on the left side, I will always get a false positive. The left side is already much dewier and softer than the right side, putting on any product will make it feel more dewy and softer. It just won't provide a good indicator of how well a product works. By using the right side, the results will be more prominent.

I used the Stem Cell Pure Blood EX essence on the right side of the face, and the Benton Cacao Moist & Mild Serum on the left. This is to ensure there are the same amount of layers on both sides, so it's not going to give me a false positive due to having different layers of products on each side.

I have been testing it for a month and I have to say. I love it! I noticed a difference within two weeks but continued to test it to be sure.

I noticed that the right side have felt at par or even more hydrated and plumper than the left side. The addition of the oil phase to the essence definitely locked in the moisture and helps retain it. I was quite surprised by how it increased the hydration on the right side. The few times I didn't use it, I missed it. I really wanted to slap on that extra layer to ensure my skin feel dewy.

I only noticed the hydration and nourishing feature, and not so much on the brightening. But that's only because I usually can't tell anything related to brightening. Plus, those would require a longer testing period. I wasn't looking for those results and I am not going to mark it against the product if I don't see any brightening effect.

Adding an addendum because I found something else after I finished the write up of this post!

I had a whole bunch of breakouts on my forehead, chin and cheeks. I popped them because that's my biggest skincare sin. To heal it, I used all my normal routine, including this essence, along with a pore refining mask. The popped pimples reduced dramatically in size the following morning. They are basically gone by the second day. I didn't think much of it until I was chatting with Marina from Goryeo.

That's when I realized! I only used the mask on the day I popped them and nothing else after that. The products I use are primarily targeted towards hydration and not toward hyper-pigmentation. So it is very likely that this essence, which is targeted towards brightening and skin regeneration, had something to do with it.

The breakouts on my forehead has completely gone back to normal by day 3. I can't even tell I had breakout on there 3 days ago. The ones on my chin and cheeks are still visible, but only because I drew blood and it scabbed a little. But the redness from the post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) is gone. Usually those stick around for a week before they go away.

I had to add this to the review as I don't normally get breakouts so it is just sheer luck that I had a lot of breakouts just before I decided to post the review. I can't 100% say the shorter healing time and PIH reduction time is related to the essence, but I am like 90% sure!


OVERALL THOUGHTS

I liked this essence quite a bit. The price is quite high, but when it comes with a full sized refill, it's actually not bad. I do think it uses certain ingredients like Human Stem Cell Conditioned Media, its packaging and colouring of the water phase to create shock value. To make it look like it is blood instead of just a normal biphased product. Which is neat but also kind of turns people away a little bit. I have multiple people say how it kind of creeps them out. I have to say I did too until I found out what the Human Stem Cell Conditioned Media is. So it may actually backfire on them a little bit.

Aside from that, the actual essence is nice. It's fun to shake the bottle to mix the two layers and ensure proper mix of oil and water is being poured out. It sinks in beautifully and hydrates my skin well. I love how it makes my drier side feel much more hydrated and plump. It is definitely good to be used as the last layer of essences.

While the price is a bit high, but I honestly don't think it's too bad if you get a refill with it, which is 200ml of products. I probably would repurchase it when mine runs out and I have no more essences.

Lastly, I just want to thank Marina for introducing me to this great product!

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