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Gmarket Haul number 6 ! November 30, 2010

Here’s Hope In A Blog Latest Gmarket Haul ( a small one! )

Introducing a few brands here that those of you not might not be familiar with :

a) Dr MJ – is having –70% sales for their escargot/snail skincare line right now, so it might be worth checking out. On top of that, they are also giving away FREE Escargot (their premium line) samples which are worth quite a lot!

b) CNP Lab – This is quite a reputable and serious brand in Korea. I was quite impressed with the ingredients of their Star product their B.B.B Cream ( Blemish Block and Barrier BB Cream ). Check out their products description here!

We also bought the new Laneige Multiberry Yoghurt Peeling Gel and Sleeping Pack!

And last but not least, we had to stock up on our favourite product ever, Sulwhasoo’s First Aid Serum! Smile

What have you been buying from Gmarket? Update Us!

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Bobbi Brown BB Cream Coming Soon! :) UPDATED! November 29, 2010

Filed under: BB Cream,Bobbi Brown,What's New(s) ? — Hope In A Blog @ 1:07 am
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You heard it here on Hope In A Blog first! Smile

Though nothing has been officially released, it is confirmed that Bobby Brown will be releasing their own version of the very famous BB Cream next spring. Product development is already finished. Bobbi Brown announnced this during her book tour in South Korea.

Bobbi Brown’s version of the product will come in three colors, all of which contain a touch of yellow, Brown said. That might seem strange, but Brown, a former makeup artist who has a degree in theatrical makeup, emphasizes that almost all women have a bit of yellow in their skin.

“We all have yellow tones in our skin, regardless of whether you are Asian, Caucasian or African,” she said, a discovery that has led her to design foundations containing shades of yellow to match people’s skin.



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What’s your Skincare Routine? November 28, 2010

I’ve been following this skincare routine for a long time, and my skin has never looked this good. Though the acne scars are still there, but they are much less apparent !

Step 1- Cleansing

Decleor’s Reflet de Purete + Elisha Coy’s BB Cleanser

I’ve been alternating between both products and love them both. But if i had to pick one, it would be Decleor’s Reflet de Purete.

Step 2 – Exfoliating

Charmzone’s Control Cream

Control Creams are cream exfoliants that do not use grains or acids. The action of this cream is meant to dissolve dead skin cells and basically draw out sebum and other impurities which settle into the skin.

It melts impurities from pores without scrubbing. Maintains the skin’s natural balance of oils and moisture by utilizing the cytokine ingredient which intensifies the skin’s self control function.

Ever since i was introduced to Control Cream 1 week ago- it has became a staple step in my skincare routine! Keep an eye for the review.

Step 3 – Booster-pH Balancing

Sulwhasoo’s First Aid Treatment Serum.

This is the first time i’ve seen any cosmetic brand that requires us to apply a serum before anything else! The Sulwhasoo’s First Aid Serum is a booster that prepares your skin for other products. It boosts the efficiency of the upcoming products and assures optimal results from your serum and cream. It also promotes pH balance of the skin and replenishes essential moisture and nutrients.

Step 3 – Skin Balancing

Sulwhasoo’s Balancing Water

Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this gel-textured water balances and delivers deep hydration.

Step 4 – Moisturizing

Sulwhasoo’s Balancing Emulsion

Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this moisture-rich emulsion promotes soft, smooth skin. I love how light this emulsion is – but still very moisturizing in every way! Those with drier skin would opt for the cream instead , but those with normal or oily skin would do just with the emulsion.

Step 5 – Revitalizing

Sulwhasoo’s Revitalizing Serum

Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this serum refines the skin and improves skin density.

Nourishing the skin on the surface as well as deep within, this treatment serum promotes skin renewal and diminishes uneven skin texture and roughness.

Step 6 – Eye Cream

Sulwhasoo’s Rejuvenating Eye Cream

Absolutely divine to put on!  Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this age-defying eye cream revitalizes skin around the eyes, reducing lines and wrinkles and minimizing dark circles and puffiness.

Step 7 – Moisture Locking (Night)

Sulwhasoo’s Overnight Treatment Pack

Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this overnight mask awakens a radiant looking skin with nourishing moisture and herbal extracts. – Creating an essential moisture layer on the skin, this masks assures optimum penetration of nourishing herbs while you rest.  Can’t live without this!

Step 7 – BB Cream (Day)

SunnySide VIP’s BB Cream

I think i found the holygrail of all BB Creams! Smile

Step 8 – Clarifying

Sulwhasoo’s Clarifying Mask (Once a week)

Formulated with Korean Medicinal Herbs, this peel-off mask purifies and clarifies dull, devitalized and problem skin. A cream/emulsion is advised before applying this clarifying mask. It really brightens the skin !!!

Step 9 –Neck Cream

Sulwhasoo’s Restoring Neck Cream

Formulated with Korean Medicianl Herbs, this neck cream improves firmness for younger-looking skin.
– Phyllanthus urinaria and Sulwhasoo Lipo-Filling Capsule promotes firmness and volume; reviving age-damaged slackenned skin.
– Absorbing quickly, this treatment cream, gently supports the skin of the neck and reduces the appearance of deep wrinkles and sagging skin. A neautral colored formulation ssures cream will not stain clothes or linens.
* Sulwhasoo Lipo-Filling Capsule: A synergy of 7 Korean medicinal ingredients to build volume and restore firmness

Now What’s YOUR Skincare routine? Share it here below in the comments!

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HADA LABO Tamagohada AHA/BHA Exfoliating Face Wash November 27, 2010









A little introduction on the brand. Hada Labo SkinCare line under the joint development of USA’s Mentholatum Company and Japan’s Rohto Pharmaceuticals Co.

Using the technology developed through the production of OTC Drugs, Haba Labo skincare line is produced in a Pharmaceutical manufacturing environment, under strict GMP guidelines to ensure Quality, Reliability and Effectiveness in their products.

Hada Labo was launched in Japan in 2004 and received massive support in a short span of time. It’s Star Product – the Super Hyaluronic Moisturizing Lotion is the No.1 Face Lotion in Japan with one sold every 4 seconds!

The AHA/BHA Cleansing was inspired by the smoothness and delicateness of an unshelled egg, – hence the name tamago(egg)hada(skin) AHA-BHA Cleanser –  this ‘eggquisite’ cleanser contains AHA and BHA (alpha and beta hydroxy acids) to give clarity , brightness, and promote skin cell renewal by preventing dead skin cell buildup. This gentle cleanser lathers into a fine, velvety foam to prevent blemishes and polishes away dullness for a renewed skin everyday.






Note that since this product has different factories, the packaging will differ. The South East Asia Hadalabo products are manufactured in China while the ones in Japan/Korea/Hong Kong are the ones manufactured in Japan. I had a problem with the essence i bought, the product was missing it’s pump, but that’s what you get when your products are made in China! However the company was very efficient and DHL-ed a new bottle with the pump all the way to Paris.

The cleanser comes without a box and comes in a blue greenish tube and is sold in various sizes.

Note that there is also a FOAM version of this cleanser and it is not yet available in the South East Asian market.











One thing i applaud HadaLabo is that the controversial foaming agent sodium laureth sulfate isn’t used here ( See Elisha Coy BB Cleanser Review regarding this ingredient.) However…..

Let’s go through the list quickly :


1) Butylene Glycol – This chemical is a preservative used to keep skincare and beauty products from spoiling. Butylene Glycol (BG) is also a humectant, a chemical that helps your skin (or other substances) retain moisture. It is also a solubilizer, which means it makes other substances (such as fat) more soluble in water. It also has a fair share of its controversies – depression, vomiting, drowsiness, coma and respiratory failure are one of its side effects. Restrictions have been placed on how much of this chemical can be used in skincare products and cosmetics. According to some experts, it’s not enough. Many mainstream brands at Macy’s, Bloomies, Neiman’s etc., have even found ways to circumvent the restrictions; using just enough of this chemical to be sold legally. And on the Cosmetic Database, it has shown strong evidence on human irritant. It has also shown effects on organs, reproductive system, the brain, the nervous system, the endocrine system. Sounds like this might be worse than parabens or Sodium Laureth Sulfate itself eh? PEG-20M is also used here.  PEG is an abbreviation for polyethylene glycol. The number in the name is the average number of units, or monomers, of ethylene glycol. Just great !

2) Lauramidopropyl BetaineA synthetic compound obtained by the extensive chemical modification of lauric acid, a natural fatty acid. Function : Antistatic agent / Surfactant / Cleansing / Foam Boosting

3) Stearic Acid – Esters of stearic acid with ethylene glycol (PEG) , glycol stearate and glycol distearate, are used to produce a pearly effect in shampoos, soaps, and other cosmetic products. They are added to the product in molten form and allowed to crystallize under controlled conditions. So, this is the ingredient that gives the pearly color effect of the Hadalabo cleanser!

4) Glycolic Acid – Glycolic acid (or hydroxyacetic acid) is the smallest α-hydroxy acid(AHA). Due to its excellent capability to penetrate skin, glycolic acid finds applications in skin care products, most often as a chemical peel. Glycolic acid is used to improve the skin’s appearance and texture. It may reduce wrinkles, acne scarring, hyperpigmentation and improve many other skin conditions, including actinic keratosis,hyperkeratosis, and seborrheic keratosis. Once applied, glycolic acid reacts with the upper layer of the epidermis, weakening the binding properties of the lipids that hold the dead skin cells together. This allows the stratum corneumto be exfoliated, exposing live skin cells.

6) Potassium Hydroxide (KOH) – Potassium Hydroxide is used in the cosmetic and skin care industry as a pH adjuster or bufferer in a wide variety of formulas. It has a unique ability to attract water molecules from its environment, and ultimately dissolve into the water that it had originally absorbed, balancing the formula without creating excess weight or changing the composition. Read more : here

7)  Lauric Acid – Lauric Acid is the main fatty acid in coconut oil as well as palm kernel oil; it is also found in human milk, cow’s milk, and goat’s milk. It is used in beauty products and skin care because of its moisturizing abilities, and is also recognized as an acne-fighter thanks to its anti-microbial properties.

8) Sorbitol – Sorbitol is a sugar alcohol, C6H14O6 found in nature as the sweet constituent of many berries and fruits best known from Sorbus aucuparia (Rowan or European Rowan). Sorbitol retains moisture on the skin and leaves it feeling soft.

9) Salicylic Acid – is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA).salicylic acid is a key ingredient in many skin-care products for the treatment of acne, psoriasis, calluses, corns, keratosis pilaris, and warts. It works as both a keratolytic and comedolytic agent by causing the cells of the epidermis to shed more readily, opening clogged pores and neutralizing bacteria within, preventing pores from clogging up again by constricting pore diameter, and allowing room for new cell growth.


Texture & Scent




This cleanser is rather thick and dense in texture. It also has a pearly effect on it!  It smells a little like aspirin but doesn’t cause any discomfort.

Water definitely needs to be applied with the cleanser before spreading it on the face as its texture is rather dense and thick to be spread across the face.

Once water is applied, mix it together and lather it until foam is formed and now you are ready to clean your face! As not much foaming agents were used here, there isn’t much foam. However it doesnt cause any problems as it doesn’t affect its cleansing power.

Cleansing Power


Cleansing power is rather good!

However, my skin felt dry after cleansing, and i don’t quite like the feeling after cleansing. Perhaps it’s because of Winter, but i doubt so. I’m sure this cleanser wouldn’t be a problem if you’re staying in a tropical country where it’s sunny all year long, but for those of us who go though winter, this cleanser might be drying and for those with dry skin, you might as well look for another cleanser!

Before Cleansing :



After cleansing ( Moisture level dropped ! )





Other than the ingredient butylene/ethylene glycol that is present here, i find this cleanser quite a good value for money. It is rather cheap in South East Asia and it delivers what is promises.

My skin does feel smooth after cleansing and brightens the skin too – though  it feels dry. On top of that, this cleanser is free of fragrance, mineral oil, alcohol (it claims to be but Butylene Glycol is an alcohol btw..) and colorant.

AHAs and BHAs helps in exfoliating the skin, but i am rather sceptical here that a few minutes of application would do anything to the skin, and it is washed off after that. You would be better off investing in an AHA BHA based cream. However that said, the AHA/BHA cleanser is less of an irritant than a physical exfoliant as it is a chemical exfoliant. Compared to physical exfoliants, it is more gentle to the skin too.

Repurchase? Most probably not. I would consider using this during summer or during my holidays in Malaysia. If you’re looking for a simple cleanser with a rather cheap price and with oily skin, go ahead and try this.  If you have dry skin, try another cleanser, this isn’t for you.

For more reviews :


Plus Size Kitten










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How to evade/reduce taxes on gmarket orders!



This is extremely important for those of you are are in Europe or America where the tax officers are very strict.


We learnt the hard way of learning how to evade being taxed, and only mastered the art of it after a few shipments, so here we are sharing with all of you, so make sure (and hopefully!) you read this before you go on with your orders.


Rule #1

Always split your shipments in two.



When shopping on Gmarket, make sure you separate your orders in two orders.


The FIRST ORDER is the most important one, and the order which Gmarket will take when declaring taxes. Therefore, split your orders into two and put all the cheap stuff on your first order. To be sure, put items below 20,000 Korean Wons on your first order, and make sure it has at LEAST 4 items.


Rule #2



Place items which are more expensive on a second order. To be extra safe, put only 3 of these very expensive items in one order.  Unfortunately, you would have to pay for shipping twice, but it doesn’t matter as Gmarket will weigh both of your orders and ship it in one shipment, and the balance will be debited to you in your Gbalance account



After placing both orders, go to your Gmarket Shopping List. Click on Overseas Order.





Then tick on both orders that was placed, and at the bottom of the page, click on ‘REQUEST COMBINED SHIPMENT’.


If you don’t want the hassle of doing combining two orders, just put everything in one order – and Gmarket will only pick 4 items to be declared. If they pick the expensive ones – then you’re unlucky.



If ever your shipment is retained by the customs, don’t be stupid enough to send them the whole bill/paypal receipt. Gmarket picked only 4 items to be declared, therefore if you send the tax officers your paypal/gmarket/credit card recipt, you will end up paying taxes for the whole order.



What to do in this case? Simply e-mail Gmarket and ask them to scan your EMS label. Once you receive your EMS label, you will know how much to declare in your letter/or ‘letter proforma’ in french, and you will end up paying taxes for those 4 items!


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Innisfree Windy Lip Balm November 24, 2010


Inisfree, a naturalistic brand that uses 99% natural  ingredients and under the Amore Pacific Corporation ( Laneige, IOPE, Sulwhasoo etc..)  has released three new lip balm from their Jeju Island line (the other being the Jeju Island Volcanic Pore Mud Mask).

5% of the sales from this item will be donated to the Jeju Island committee to preserve the island.  Ingredients include sunflower oil, palm seed butter, babassu oil/cusi oil – a clear light yellow vegetable oil extracted from the seeds of babassu palm and has similar properties to coconut oil,  and other naturally derived ingredients which makes up of 99% of the composition.

The lip balm is available in 3 flavours – Green Tea (White tube), Camellia ( light red tube), and Tangerine (Orange tube).

Retailed for 8000 won (15ml).

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New : SkinFood’s Omega Inca line & Cosmetic launch


Skinfood – ‘good cosmetics nade with delicious food’ – has released it’s new line – called the Omega Inca  line.

So what exactly is the INCA Omega Oil ?

This vegetable oil is extracted from the seeds of the Sacha Inchi plant, a small plant that produces mall hermaphrodite flowers producing small pods which has usually 6 lobes. This plant is cultivated mainly in Peru at the heart of the Inca culture. Inca Omega Oil contains one of the highest amounts of polyunsaturated fatty acids among all oily seeds used for human consumption. It reaches an average of 48% content of alfa-linolenic acid (omega 3) and an average of 37% content of linolelic acid (Omega 6). Additionally it also contains 8% of Oleic Acid (Omega 9).

Not only that, it is also very high in Tocopherol ( Vitamin E) concentration.

Abilities of Inca Omega Oil includes :

– Reduction of Trans-Epidermal Water Loss

– Improvement of Skin Barrier function

– Reduces hyper-sensitivity

– Improves microcirculation

– PUFA (Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids) protect the cell’s membrane and prevent the destruction of DNA.

Products in the INCA Line will include :

1) Essence 140ml – 9,900 won

2) Emulsion 140ml – 9,900 won

3) Cream 50ml – 10,900 won

4) Eye cream 25ml – 9,900 won


Also, Skinfood will also be launching it’s first cosmetics make up line at the end of the year.  Pearl with be the highlight of the line.

The makeup line will include

1) Cake Party All Over Powder – 13,900 won – consists of 4 eye shadow colors (can be used as highlighter, blush or powder too).

2) Partty Pearl Lip Gloss – 5,900 won

3) Pearl Party –2,900 won – nail polish with shimmering silver glitter.

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