Those of you who read this blog likely no I’m no big hanbang fan. I’m open to trying it, but so far of the ones I have tried the only thing I truly enjoyed was Sulwhasoo’s Snowise Cleansing Foam, which smells a lot like wandering into a pine grove and is delightfully low pH.
I had figured traditional Korean medicinal scents were not for me, but I stopped by The Face Shop last night to pick up one thing and had a delightful chat with the woman running the shop, who told me that my Korean pronunciation was “perfect.” Me, literally, ever since:
Accurate. So since we chatted and had fun, she plied me with samples of a newish line that The Face Shop introduced to compete with hanbang lines like Sulwhasoo. Called 에화담 (Yehwadam), it’s more affordable than Sulwhasoo, but still designed for aging/mature skin. I was excited to try it out, so I went home and broke one of the cardinal rules of good skincare. I patch tested nothing and swapped the serum, eye cream, and moisturizer steps of the routine out for the shiny new samples. See, I’m not always a model of good skincare.
There are a few different lines under the 에화담 label. These samples are from the Heaven Grade Ginseng line, which certainly appealed to me with its terminology. As soon as I had it in my hands I liked it. The products feel rich (which one would expect of a mature skin product), but I also noticed the smell, which is a gentle ginseng fragrance that is really appealing to me. Since this is new stuff, the ingredient list is not on CosDNA, and I’m too lazy to type it all out. I will tell you that while Ginseng is indeed in this product, it’s joined by a variety of other traditional medicine such as Japonica seed extract, algae extract, asparagus cochinchinesis extract, and a lot of other herbal medicines you will struggle to pronounce.
I’ve had this love affair going with Banila’s Miss Flower and Mr. Honey cream lately, and since it’s my favorite moisturizer, I was pretty hard to shake when it came to the idea of replacing that. However, I’m not so into the Mizon serum I’m currently using, and as soon as I got the Heaven Grade Ginseng serum in my hands, I knew I was going to buy it. I like creamy, thick serums, and this one fit the bill instantly.
I was also thrilled to see that, unlike Sulwhasoo, the product is affordable. A 45ml bottle is $45.90 at Amazon, which is certainly higher end than most serums I use, but way more affordable than the Sulwhasoo First Care Activating Serum, for instance ($88.35 on Amazon). Sorry Sulwhasoo, but I’m not an old rich lady (yet).
Since the Regenerating Cream is $47.99 at Amazon and the Eye Cream is $38.50, a first investment into the line would run me roughly $150. There is a toner too, which I didn’t get a sample of. Overall, it’s not a bad price, but it would definitely hurt the wallet if I ran out of everything at the same time. Still, I’m impressed enough with the results to consider adding at least one of these items to my routine for a while, if only for the luxurious consistency. Here’s the no-makeup results (it’s worth mentioning that I’ve also been on Curology for two weeks).
Cool, right? I’ll report back when I actually purchase the serum. I’m usually sort of middling about The Face Shop’s products, but this line nails it. I’m newly impressed with them!
[Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.]