YÜLI ME Skin Fuel: Pure Gold

YULI ME Skin Fuel

When it comes to oils, quality matters. What stands out about YÜLI is how fresh and high quality the ingredients are. This is because no product is made until it is ordered and YÜLI uses ingredients that they grow and harvest themselves so it’s like farm to skin fresh. This is important because plant oils are very concentrated so freshness and purity is so important for performance.

ME Skin Fuel is the versatile face oil that is recommended for most people starting out or uncertain which oil to use. I chose it because my skin was becoming very irritable and stopped getting along with everything. This was recommended to me as being great at restoring balance to my skin and strengthening it. This delicious oil is concentrated and lightweight, yet densely packed with plenty of nutrients that it has earned the nickname as a “multivitamin nutrient cocktail” for the skin.

My first impressions

My first impression is how taken I was with the freshness of this product. The color and smell are both so vibrant and blossoming. You can literally tell from the picture. The oil color is pure gold and contains many gems like Pomegranate Seed, Black Cumin Seed, Broccoli Seed, Red Raspberry Seed, Argan Oil and Prickly Pear Seed Oil. It’s cold pressed and made fresh to ensure maximum levels of bioactivity and preserve the integrity of the nutrients by removing heat and chemicals from the extraction process. This means its purity level is basically not matched.

I also love how inventive and smart YÜLI is with the ingredients, Red Raspberry Seed adds a level of environmental UV protection, Black Cumin Seed boosts cell immunity and fends off weakness, Broccoli Seed gives a very light and silky primer texture, Prickly Pear Seed is a vitamin and antioxidant powerhouse, while the Dandelion infusion has anti-irritation properties.

There is a herbal scent that is mostly Jasmine which is a very intoxicating flower that gives this some lightness and luxury. I don’t find it as heavy as Rodin’s oil, it’s much more measured and subdued which I prefer for face care products.

I apply 3-5 drops for my skin and use the press-push technique to massage the organic oils into my skin. This gives an immediate rested glow. It really feels like I’m feeding my skin the nutrients it has been craving. After about 2 weeks I noticed my skin was no longer as weak or reactive with some eczema flareups subsiding and persistent redness toned down significantly. Products that I could not use before no longer stung or burned and I think it’s because this oil has really healed and repaired my skin.

The results

There are many face oils but this doesn’t just feel like just an oil, my skin feels and looks so different after I put this on. There is a significant difference from using this and I recommend it for anyone. YÜLI is a line known for it’s scientific and advanced ingredients, so I understand some might steer toward their bio-retinol serum or liposomal Vitamin C. ME Skin Fuel is a straight forward blend of superb quality cold pressed, organic plant oils that showcase YÜLI’s high quality sourcing from their biodynamic farms rather than technological innovations like the rest of their line. This makes it the ideal repair and restore serum for sensitive or problematic skin that just needs good ingredients that work and won’t irritate skin.

In just the span of a few weeks this has quickly become a go to product for soft, silky skin. The oil really goes a long way toward feeding and improving my skin. Just a few drops day and night seems to fix all my skin issues and turns my skin into the perfect canvas.

Ingredients

simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil*, argania spinosa (argan) oil*, prunus armeniaca (apricot kernel) oil*, nigella sativa (black cumin) oil*, punica granatum (pomegranate) oil*, rubus idaeus (red raspberry) seed oil*, brassica oleracea (broccoli) seed oil*, opuntia ficus-indica (prickly pear) seed oil*, hippophae rhamnoides (sea buckthorn) oil*, taraxacum officinale (dandelion) infused in jojoba oil*, supercritical extracts of hippophae rhamnoides (sea buckthorn) seed and fruit*, helichrysum italicum (immortelle)* extract, nymphaea caerulea (blue lotus) extract^^, jasminum grandiflorum (jasmine) extract*.

*Certified Organic
^^ Wildcrafted

Verdict

There is a reason why YÜLI products are ALWAYS sold out, sometimes within hours of arriving at retailers. Their products are that good and I was particularly impressed with ME Skin Fuel, their interpretation on facial oil. $92 for 1 oz is an investment but for cold pressed, organic plant oils of the highest quality, it is a worthy price to pay. I believe there are oils that are more expensive that are not as well made as this. I fell in love with the first use and continue to lightly press this into my skin during the day and bathe my skin in this repair serum at night. It is pure liquid gold and a must have in any face oil collection.

Available at YÜLI and Spirit Beauty Lounge

LIEBSTER AWARD AND NOMINATIONS

I’m so excited to be participating in the Liebster Awards! Jade from Nepriticus graciously nominated me along with other really wonderful beauty bloggers. If you haven’t read Jade’s post, it’s fantastic. Not only is she a true green beauty but I have learned about many lines from her as well and if you are not following her on twitter (@nephriblog) you are losing out!

The Questions

1. What is your nighttime skincare routine?Yuli May Lindstrom Clinique

Night time is my favorite time to experiment with potions. There are always things I am trying but I will stick to regulars. When I shower, I am using the Yuli Halcyon cleanser which is so light and gentle but really makes my skin feel clean and removed from the day. The gel smells refreshing and gently foams into skin leaving my skin very soothed. I have also gotten May Lindstrom’s Honey Mud and been using it kind of as a mask pre-cleansing for long days, as with all things May, it is fun to experiment with the cleanser/mask before showering because it is hard to keep water out if you bring it into shower. I’ll do a full review on these two products soon.I also have a Clarisonic that I use some days with Yuli Halcyon. I have the gentle delicate brush head because I like to have to stimulate circulation and do not use so much to exfoliate.After shower I use toner immediately. I used to not do toning because I thought it was superfluous or as some mention mostly aromatherapy. I experimented with toners from many lines and ended up addicted to the Yuli Cocoon Elixir. I remember after skiing at Lake Tahoe and my skin was red, and I sprayed this afterward and took a nap, I woke up and my skin was bright with no redness.

I do a serum (or two). Mainly antiage and pigmentation serums for me right now so I use a retinol my dermatologist prescribed, Yuli Cell Perfecto, and Clinique Dark Spot Corrector. For anyone looking for a supercharged serum to fade acne scars just try a retinol + Cell Perfecto, it is no joke.Isun Antipodes
I am currently using a face oil as moisturizer from a line called Isun. It goes on pretty thick and smells nice so I only need a little. I haven’t seen benefits that I do not get from other oils but this is still quite nice. If I need more, I use the Antipodes light facial day cream which can be used at night. It’s very light and smells like vanilla.

After I now take care of my body too because my arms and legs became dry so I used the Yuli Harmony. I know… another Yuli product, but they’re all so good and trust me, for me to spend that amount of money it has to be worth it and they are. Admittedly unlike the cleanser and toner which I have compared to other brands before purchasing full sizes, their body oil is the first body oil I have used. I just couldn’t pass up the technology they used. Normal body oils make me feel like why am I spending this much for oil for my body but I loved their herbal infusion (triple infusions!), flower complex, gemstone treatment, and a lot more, just go to their site. At $80, I just felt like it was too tempting to pass up and I’m glad I purchased it because my skin has never been smoother or softer.

2. What do you do to relax or unwind from stress?

Stress is one of those things that gives me stress because it is so intangible (?). I find it’s habits I have to commit to in order to minimize stress like turning off my computer and phone by 9 PM, forcing myself to watch mindless television shows (Hello Bravo and E!), going outside every morning to just breathe in the fresh air for 2 minutes in silence.

3. How did you get into green beauty?

I got into green beauty through food first because there are a lot of chemicals and unsavory processing in the foods we consume. I volunteered at a hospital during the weekends and I noticed a disproportionate number of regular sick patients had very similar lifestyles which included unbalanced diets, poor physical fitness and the third surprised me – cosmetics! A lot of the women I met with stage 1/2 cancer and hormonal problems had a specific fondness for their products, and it played a large part in their normal lives. Later I learned that 60%-80% of the chemicals in cosmetics were found to be linked to cancer. It traced back something my mother always said off the cuff whenever we would walk into Sephora, “Being in this environment every day can’t be good for your body” and that is when everything made sense to me regarding the switch to green beauty. Like most people, I started with the green washed stuff first like Origins and then discovered Whole Foods and Spirit Beauty Lounge which are the two main places my skincare comes from today (also love Embody Beauty and Shen Beauty).

At first it was hard to justify the price tag for many green beauty items, especially if you love Spirit Beauty like I do but the quality of the products are undeniable and I’d rather pay more for something that works really well than for something that isn’t as good and poor for my health. Now I love the luxurious green lines and have found that sticking to investing in those “must have” products rather than indulging in many products will make it more affordable and I’m able to have what I think are the best products money can buy.

4. A recent good read? If not a read, a recent good TV show or movie?

I am trying to get through the Three Kingdoms series, which is the only casual read I have time to enjoy. I really like recording TV shows and watching it all at the end, like a DVD box set. Right now I’m getting through Girls which I don’t always like but I like that it doesn’t try to make New York look like it is a party all the time. I am trying to get into Downton Abbey, but I have not been able to!

5. You can only eat one thing for the rest of your life. What is it?

Sushi! This is a cheat answer because there are so many options for rolls that you can have everything! My roommates used to vote for where we should have dinner and they never needed my vote but I always wanted to go to one of the sushi places near us, even if we just went  few days ago, that is how much I like it!

6. What is your favorite face oil?
Yuli Modern Alchemist

This is the toughest question on here! How do you pick just one especially when part of the beauty of face oils is that there are so many and they’re all so unique and interesting? I think the one ‘gem’ I’ve discovered is Yuli Modern Alchemist. It isn’t a pure face oil made from plant oils because they also put other ingredients in there like Coq10 and Tamarind seed extract. The reason I like it is because the smell and texture reminds me of May Lindstrom’s beautiful Youth Dew but there are a lot more ingredients like a essential fatty acid complex and anti aging retinols and the price tag is actually less than the Youth Dew. Another thing I like about this serum and the brand is that they exclude a lot of ingredients that cause issues even if they are natural – WINNING! My skin is really really taken care of with this serum, I am smitten with the results.

7. All-time green beauty favorites?

Yuli Pure Mask

Yuli Pure Mask is exceptional. It’s just amazing. I love that it is very cooling and soothing but also very purifying which is suitable for my skin when it acts up. It really does everything from clearing pores, zapping acne, lightening complexion to feeding skin. The small size makes it perfect to take on travel, and you only need a little of the powder so it lasts quite long.

8. Your skin is freaking out. What do you do?

The Pure Mask is amazing for any freak out (my review). Other than that I am very good about ‘putting the bottle down and stepping away’. I think doing a lot will make it freak out even more. Maybe I drink more water and sleep.

9. What is something new (product, brand, experience, anything) you want to try soon?

May Lindstrom Aurelia Antipodes

I have been meaning to take the plunge into green perfumery. I keep my eye on some things from Tsi La and Strange Invisibles but I am afraid of being disappointed because the natural perfumes I have tried at Whole Foods have all been disappointing (Vanilla + Alcohol) and do not last long. I really want something that will stay for a few hours so it can be worth the very very high price tag.

This year I am on a mission to try more high end green brands. I currently have 3 of May Lindstrom’s products (Problem solver, Clean Dirty, Honey Mud), just purchased Aurelia Miracle cleanser and De Mamiel cleansing balm. I’m quite enthused by the amount of fantastic green products out there.

10. Something(s) (product, experience, anything) essential to you for every day?

Not related to beauty, but I always speak to my parents on the phone every day usually after dinner even when I have exams and papers. I go over my day and calling after dinner lets me be able to tell them “Yes I ate” which if anyone else has Asian parents, knows is very important to them! I feel like this really helps take my away from my personal stresses at school and gives me perspective.

 

Sunday Ritual

Sunday

 

I woke up this morning in a positive adventurous mood. The Oscars are in town tonight and I have finished schoolwork so that means a fun evening is waiting. After a light breakfast of wheat bread toast with avocado and honey plus a banana, I decided to indulge myself in some beauty.

I began with a dry face then rubbed May Lindstrom’s Honey Mud as a mask to my skin. As the clays, chocolate, and honey went to work on my skin I checked e-mails and flipped through my favorite beauty magazines while drinking my favorite Chrysanthemum tea. It is like a chocolate pudding treat in the morning which is perfect for  Sunday.

After 15 minutes, I rinsed off the Honey Mud then followed with a gentle but thorough cleansing courtesy of my new favorite cleanser from Yuli, Halcyon. With 2 pumps of the gel (shown on the brush head), I gently exfoliated and cleansed my skin at the same time, which allows the gel nutrients to penetrate farther and bring out the bad stuff to the surface. The scent is so refreshing and spa quality that I can’t help but smile and unwind.

Next I applied the Modern Alchemist serum from Yuli, which is really a gem I’ve discovered in green beauty. There are so many wonderful plant oils like argan, rosehip, avocado, baobab, prickly pear, and rose and great ingredients like CoQ10 and omega-lipids. I have not found a serum with better ingredients, period. This is in the stratosphere of premium serums like May Lindstrom Youth Dew and Mun Aknari Night Serum with the attention to detail and the beautiful texture and fragrance (like a honey rose) but is more forgiving at $125 for 30ml (versus $95 for 15ml of Mun and $120 for 20ml of Youth Dew) so it is my secret weapon.

Last step is the Antipodes Rejoice Light Day Cream which is quite medium-thick texture compared to normal moisturizers which is perfect step in the routine to keep my skin moisturized. The vanilla scent seems to blend very well with the other products and I love the ingredients (manuka, avocado, lavender, macadamia, jojoba).

This simple yet very luxurious green beauty ritual beyond indulges my skin and I am sitting here with perfectly soft and plumped skin planning what to wear tonight!

Wishlist

wishlist

 

Kahina Fez Body Serum | Tata Harper Rejuvenating Serum | Dr.Alkaitis Trial Kit | May Lindstrom Problem Solver | YULI Liquid Courage

Kahina Fez Body Serum: Never been a body oil user, but I am so intrigued by the Moroccan flavor of Kahina’s Fez Body Serum with cumin, clove from spice markets in Fez, Morocco and patchouli, sandalwood, ylang ylang scents from antiquity.  I wonder how the warm, calming aromatherapy will work the Kahina famous argan oil to moisturize and smooth dry skin. Some of my favorite fragrances of neroli and rose are also in this oil so I am sure I will love it come winter!

Tata Harper Rejuvenating Serum: I discovered a sample of this and finished using it in 2 days because it was so good! There are 29 active natural ingredients in this anti-aging treatment. It is pricey but you need less than one pump of cream to use on entire face! Although I am not getting wrinkles or fine lines, I want to prevent my skin from developing them and using this makes me feel my skin drinking the anti-aging brew. It smells like the most luxurious and light cream I’ve ever used, kind of what I think concentrated jasmine and green tea smell like. The extracts slow aging, build collagen which slows starting in our 20s (OH NO!), and gives skin back its glow!

Dr.Alkaitis Trial Kit: I have been interested in this line for a while but after a not so impressive experience with the Cellular Repair Mask, I think I will buy the kit to try everything at once to see if this is a good line for me. I am most interested in the Soothing Gel, Nourishing Oil, and Toner but I have seen good reviews on the moisturizers too. The Soothing Gel seems great as a moisturizing gel that also kills acne. The nourishing oil is a steal and has a lot of beneficial medicinal herbs. I think the price is a great deal for trying a good size of almost the entire line for a few weeks. The mini dark green plastic 1oz bottles are also very cute!

May Lindstrom Problem Solver: Every time there is a 20% off sale, I rush to try and get this (and fail :-(). I have used a sample before but maybe I did not do it right because it was clumpy and burned around my nose and cheeks. I see those pictures posted online of people with their May masks on and it just looks like so much fun! Maybe it is the jet black color, the beautiful instruction from May which instructs the wearer to claim their time, or the delicious cacao scent but I cannot get the Problem Solver out of my mind. The fusion of bamboo charcoal, cacao, and warming spices are one of the most active I think I have seen and I can’t wait to get my hands around this number that May calls a “hero” and a “superstar”.  

YULI Liquid Courage: I’ve been a fan of everything from them and I love antioxidant skincare so Liquid Courage seems like a total stunner. The 1st ingredient is a seed complex, which contains the densest concentration of antioxidants without irritating skin. There is also an unheard of Black Garlic Bio-ferment which is said to contain 6 times the antioxidant and protective properties of regular Garlic. The superb ingredients also include a natural CE Ferulic Acid treatment with Ferulic Acid from Acai Berries and Argan, a chiral form of Vitamin E that makes it stable and highly absorptive, and a form of Vitamin C that is called ‘the most advanced form of lipid-soluble’ Vitamin C which penetrates deeper into skin and remains stable from oxidative and sun exposure, it is also 5 times more potent than the leading form of Vitamin C. Every ingredient is like.. the newest greatest, this is a dream team that shows off the power of YULI’s innovative green technology prowess.

Luxury Mask Reviews

When it comes to beauty, I learned most of my tricks from my mom who taught me the secret to bright, glowing Asian skin at an early age- masks! I started young with Origins Clear Improvement Mask when I was a teenager and haven’t looked back since. Masks are a tool that should be in everyones skincare regimen as a weekly or bi-weekly treatment to deep clean and replenish the skin. Skin that does not receive regular cleaning tends to age  faster as the organ will not run effectively, so think of masks as that perfect detox to really shake out everything weighing down skin that you’ve accumulated: toxins, debris, grime, sweat, oils, etc. At the same time, a good mask can also infuse your skin with a dose of nutrients and provide anti-aging effects that will repair your skin. I’ve ventured out to explore mask offerings from a few of my favorite brands and here is how they stack up:

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Amorepacific Enzyme Peel Mask ($60)

What it is: “A highly-effective, botanical based brightening exfoliator made without harsh chemicals”
Who it is for: Not the most sensitive skin as this is an enzyme peel, but suitable for dry and oily skin that feels a chemical peel without harsh abrasiveness

Info: Natural papaya enzymes are the primary ingredient in this mask that exfoliates and removes dull skin cells and toxins to help other treatments penetrate skin more effectively. You simply add water to the yellow powder that smells fragrant like all high-end Asian skincare products (SKII, Shiseido, Sulwahsoo, etc.). The powder forms into a gentle almost foamy fluid to massage over skin and leave for 10-15 minutes.

Results: This mask cleans well and washed off easily. Skin is left smooth and not irritated. I would like it to be more exfoliating or do a little more as this felt sort of like a cleanser rather than a peel. I feel like the overall experience was luxurious – the scent was overflowing and the powder melted with the water but I don’t really think this is a performance product. I think a really good mask should do more than feel like a leave on cleanser so I’m not that impressed by the performance of this mask.

Caudalie Vinoperfect Enzymatic Peel Mask ($40)

What it is: “A ten minute mask that offers an immediate radiance boost and a new skin effect”
Who it is for: Not sensitive skin. A little stronger than Amorepacific with some essential oils and fragrances that might irritate.

Info: A light mousse cream mask that also works similarly to Amorepacific to exfoliate skin and renew skin in 10 minutes. Unlike Amorepacific, this ready-made cream does not need any special assembly, however its smaller size means you get less of it (I used up this one the fastest of the masks of this list). Scent, per usual Caudalie standards, is a perfect grape fragrance. Actives in here include Vinifrene which according to Caudalie is 62 times more potent than Vitamin C. This is extracted from the sap of grape vines and is said to lighten, brighten, and even complexion.

Results: Stronger than Amorepacific but did cause slight redness. I don’t think this is attributed to the strength of the exfoliants but rather questionable ingredients like silicones, fragrances, and unpronounceable chemicals. I think it is a good exfoliant but skin might be red/ irritated afterwards. I don’t think I will repurchase because it kind of sat on skin and coated it while also irritating it. Also, it is said to clear breakouts but from my experience it didn’t really make a difference. I didn’t really see the Vinifrene spring into action – considering that it is more potent than Vitamin C but 62 times, I really hoped to see the skin brightening effects after repeated use. Unfortunately I did not. I read some reviews that said this really works on acne scars and sun spots but I didn’t see any change.

Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask ($55)

What it is: “A potent bioactive complex that reduces fine lines and dramatically improves tone, firmness, and radiance.”
Who is it for: Congested and Mature skin – those with post-acne scarring, blemishes, blackheads, and sun-damaged skin.
Info: Reviewed in some detail here, I wasn’t sure how I initially felt about this orange sticky lumpy gel mask. The texture and scent definitely remind me of Orange jam. I’m not a big fan of the stickiness and I find it a little hard to rub through my skin. But once applied, it feels like a true chemical peel – more so than the aforementioned products, thanks to the 4 acid complex (lactic, glycolic, tartaric, and citric). Also uses papaya enzyme to exfoliate. Overall this feels like a more active mask than the previous two and at $55 for a tube, I think it is a better deal than the Caudalie which doesn’t give you a lot. Each pump dispenses just enough for one application though sometimes I did two pumps just to be sure there was enough.

Results: This really makes my skin feel sticky and weird when it is on but after I wash it off my skin seems to feel lighter and glowing. If you have not exfoliated or used this mask in a while, you might feel a tiny stinging sensation when you first apply – I felt that around my cheeks and smile lines the first few times. However, now it plays nicely with my skin and I no longer get that stinging sensation though I can still feel it kind of work. I’ve found that I use this as a quick pick me up mid week when my skin just feels congested and in need of an exfoliation. I would definitely consider repurchasing this mask because it is relatively powerful and travels nicely.

YULI Pure Mask ($52)

What it is: ” The creamy clay mask will purify skin while also delivering antioxidants, minerals, phyto-nutrients that restore optimal skin health leaving skin calm, glowing, and renewed.”
Who is it for: “Those with normal-combination skin types. Mature & Dry skin types will also benefit from using this non-stripping mask for the bioactive anti-aging nutrients, such as Antioxidant: EGCG , Polyphenols, & Resveratrol; wrinkle softening Vitamin E; and key skin food minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and zinc.”

Info: Review in depth, here . This is really a triple phase product: powder – clay mask – milk cleanser. There are four types of clays which contain antioxidants and remineralize the skin as they remove the gunk inside pores, remove toxins, and refresh the complexion. This also uses botanical enzymes (though I’m not sure which) as a gentle and natural chemical exfoliation to get rid of dead skin cells and detoxify. The key though is how much other good stuff is in here such as the Biophotonic Matcha powder, traditional botanicals, etc. that all work to support skin, preventing and neutralizing breakouts (new breakouts die down within the night), while providing an anti aging boost. Beginners might take caution though with the powder as the consistency of the mask can change based on how much powder/water ratio you put in – so start slow like you’re mixing wasabi. Of all the masks, this lasted the longest due to the fact that it is so concentrated so you only need a little for it to be activated by water so the value is there.

Results: One of my favorite masks, compare the ingredients list – this is choke full of good stuff that effectively cleans and renews the skin while injecting it with a healthy kick of nutrients to leave skin glowing. My skin seems to respond best to this without any irritation (no fragrances added – just a subtle rose & green tea scent from the actives), and is clarified, bright, and ridiculously smooth.

YULI Pure Mask Review: One Mask to do it All

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This holiday, I purchased and received so many new products! As a fan of YULI’s Modern Alchemist Anti-Aging Serum, I was excited when I received their Pure Mask. Pure Mask’s ingredient list is just beautiful and luxurious:  traditional Asian botanicals, 4 types of mineral-rich clays filled with antioxidants that repair skin as it draws out toxins, and something special they developed called biophotonically charged matcha which produces high levels of amino acids and antioxidants in this green tea derivative. As you can tell from this brief synopsis of the formula, Pure like most of YULI’s line, is a multitasker that combines high-end natural ingredients with advanced green technology. Little did I know it would become my new favorite product to would both neutralize breakouts and calm inflammation while  making my skin pampered, glowing, and soft!

What it is:  Pure, as the name suggests, is a multitasking mask from YULI that clarifies, detoxifies, refreshes, and recharges skin. It improves the appearance of skin by:  removing impurities and imparting anti-inflammatories and damage fighting antioxidants which neutralize damage to reveal luminous, soft, perfected skin. It purifies the skin through clearing out the pores, detoxifying skin, exfoliating dead skin cells & surface grime, decongesting break out prone areas, and actively fighting breakouts. And the creamy paste nourishes the skin with anti-aging phyto-nutrients and minerals from a loaded bioactive ingredient profile that helps to stimulate collagen production, repair damage, prevent premature aging, brighten complexion, and restore luster.

Who is it for: All skin types will benefit from this. According to their website: Those with normal-combination skin types will get preventive care from the nutrients while powerful actives decongest, calm inflammation, balance skin, and neutralize blemishes. Mature & Dry skin types will also benefit from using this non-stripping and gentle mask for the bioactive anti-aging nutrients, such as Antioxidant: EGCG , Polyphenols, & Resveratrol; wrinkle softening Vitamin E; and key skin food minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and zinc.” So this is particularly good for someone like me who has kind of combination skin with dry patches and areas of large pores/congestion and still gets some stress/diet induced breakouts now and then but needs some anti-aging benefits. This pretty much has all the essential nutrients to improve all skin types.

My Thoughts:

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The raw powder before activation

The mask itself is quite special, YULI is steadfast in making products that focus on performance and function and this is a true marker. The mask comes in a powder form so that filler ingredients that can compromise efficacy and integrity such as preservatives and alcohol are not needed. The ingredients are water-activate, which is cool because they “come alive” with water. This way, the mask doesn’t lose it’s potency sitting in your beauty cabinet which is important since masks are supposed to be stored for a while since they are not used daily. The mask is therefore always at its most potent with all ingredients charged and “alive” right before you apply it.

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The activated mask – so velvety and silky

The mask is very buttery and velvety with no grainy or gritty texture, and I found application of this silky mask extremely smooth and fluid. It feels like a luxury product with the faintest rose and green tea scent and you can tell they truly developed this product without cutting any corners, one can’t help but appreciate a well made mask! I noticed that the mask went to work very soon after I applied it and started to purge my pores. I could literally feel the firming effect and felt my pores detoxify. As there are active enzymes, I spritzed with a few sprays of YULI’s Metamorphic Elixir to keep the enzymes “alive” and prolong wear.  After 15 minutes, I washed the mask off and was pleasantly surprised to find that the mask transformed into a cream cleanser which rinsed off easily! I did not have to follow up with anything and my skin was glowing and primed for slathering on a solid facial oil before bed!

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A close-up of the mask, you can see there is no grainy scrub texture, it applies very creamy

Throughout application to removal, I was completely enamored by this product. It is so effective and does everything it says, but what really pushes it to the next level is the amount of polish and attention to details. They got the consistency just right, the creaminess is delicious and then turns into a milk cleanser upon rinsing! Such solid touches! And the exfoliating enzymes worked like a charm and left my skin feeling so refreshed without any harsh abrasiveness (in fact this creamy concoction has no ‘roughness’ or scrub texture to it whatsoever which is a relief since so many natural brands rely on irritating physical exfoliators to get the job done). The skin food minerals, rose, green tea, and traditional botanical mix really provide your skin with everything it needs for any job and I could feel it calming all inflammation and breakouts usually withered down by the morning. Blemishes are handled with ease and without any of the harshness. The firming effects of the mask are lasting and make my skin seem very taut and youthful, and I notice  brightening and softening which makes my skin look much younger. Skin truly does look glowing and fresh. I didn’t notice any irritation which I was worried about because my skin is extremely delicate but this mask seemed so nourishing and just made my skin feel ‘alive’. Each time I use it, I stare at my face in the mirror for longer than I care to admit just observing how wonderful and healthy it looks. This truly is a recharger and will become your skins best friend! This has become a weekly go-to and a definite top-favorite. 

Where to buy: YULI Skincare -$52 . It retails for $52 for 30ml, which is a great deal now that I’ve used it because you only need so little powder for each application as you can see from the above pictures. Therefore, it is more economical than most masks that come ready. You essentially don’t pay for the water, which is the top ingredient in most masks, so this concentrated mask is a very worthwhile investment that has the bonus of being travel friendly. I can imagine this bottle lasting me at least half a year with regular weekly use.

The Best Facial Oils

What better way to begin this than to cover the world of Facial Oils? Facial Oils are the newest must-have “it” item for most beauty enthusiasts. If used correctly they moisturize, correct, prevent, and treat all skin types! As someone who has oily skin, I was initially reluctant to try these beautiful oils but I’ve found that my skin absolutely loves the stuff and drinks the precious drops with abandon. Below, I’m compiled a list of what I consider to the best and most interesting facial oils on the market today:

RODIN Olio Lusso Facial Oil ($150/1oz)

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A top favorite on most beauty editor’s lists, this oil is a blend of 11 essential oils. Those who love Jasmine will be especially delighted with the scent! This luxurious blend is all about the experience of treating ones skin right. I noticed skin was left wonderfully hydrated and non-irritated. As the first facial oil I tried, this opened up my eyes and let me take the plunge with experimenting with facial oils. This celebrity favorite brand is used by Chanel Iman, Gwen Paltrow, and nearly all the Victoria’s Secret Angels.

Stylist Linda Rodin the creator, just wanted to create a very simple line of pure products and started when she tried to create her own custom blend of oils for her face. Through a year of trial and error, she concocted this blend which is now one of the most in demand high end beauty products. Just a few drops of this product morning and evening yields skin that is indulged and pampered. I also put this in my hair to catch a whiff of the beautiful heady jasmine throughout the day.

Who it’s for: Those who want the Creme de la Mer of Facial Oils, particularly with older more mature skin. Think Oscar de la Renta and Donna Karan crowd for the established money set.

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Sunday Riley Juno Transformative Lipid Serum ($125/1oz)

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Sunday Riley is a professional who has worked in the marketing side of the beauty industry. Sunday Riley Modern Skincare is one of the fastest emerging brands and is a media darling, with the founder Sunday Riley being hailed by some as the next Bobbi Brown. To know her line is to see the rise of the next great beauty brand.

Another beauty editor darling, Sunday Riley Modern Skincare is a line of products that uses botanicals and advanced chemistry. Juno is known as their “do-it-all” oil and it is composed of 12 oils ranging from Watermelon Seed Oil to Blueberry Seed Oil. This oil is the star of her skincare line, used in many routines as a base, primer, moisturizer – all showing the awesome power of a good facial oil. This fruity concoction is a lighter texture than Rodin and also does not have any distinguishing scent – it smells like what you would expect oil to smell like. Juno’s high lipid content helps to really protect and sooth skin which is perfect for most skin types. After using this, I noticed my skin had that glow that most people who use this talk about. Perhaps more than any other oil because of it’s lack of scent, I find myself blending this with more things including moisturizers and foundations. This is truly a very versatile oil that will add a boost to anything.

Who it’s for: the Barneys girl who can afford the best and has a place for the beautiful bottle. The Vogue beauty editor, and women who want to smile just seeing the beautifully made, expensive to touch bottle. Think Jason Wu, Derek Lam, and Stella McCartney crowd for the youthful sophisticated girl on her way to big things.

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Sjal Sapphir Concentrate Anti-Aging Facial Oil ($175/1oz)

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Sjal is comprised of a mother and daughter team who merge their interest in Eastern holistic medicine with Western science. Their spa is New York is one of my favorite in the world, so tranquil and calm. Sjal products are very expensive but also do not cause me irritation. Their products are known to use natural ingredients mixed with something insanely expensive, like a moisturizer made of shea butter but infused with diamonds.

So it should be no surprise that Sjal’s entry into the facial oil market sets it apart from other brands in that it uses actual Sapphire gemstones in the treatment process. Base oils are marinated with the Sapphires for months before they are put into the product which Sjal believes helps to transfer the energy into the oil. The oil itself is special for its pure Chamomile, and high citrus content not found in other oils. The scent is a refreshing blend of the bitter orange peel, rosemary, and lavender oils. I have only used a sample of this and found the oil to be light but very potent! I do get some initial redness but it fades very fast and my skin is happy for the rest of the time.

Who it’s for:  Bohemian downtown girls with a trust fund, New Age health enthusiasts. The girl with enough jewelry that she’s now looking for some bling for her face.  Think Carvan, Etro, Kenzo crowd for refinement with exoticism.

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May Lindstrom The Youth Dew ($120/.68oz)

A new natural beauty brand created by celebrity make-up artist May Lindstrom, and with a following that includes natural beauty guru, Spirit Demerson, the owner of spiritbeautylounge, and beauty editors from Harpers Bazaar, and People Magazine. May Lindstrom’s line of just 4 products are designed to deliver a precise treatment plan of all natural ingredients.  Her products are pretty unique in that they have many functions, a cleanser that is actually a mask, a mask you apply with a foundation brush, a body oil with mica powder to even skin tone, and finally their facial oil which is blended to deeply hydrate even the most parched skin.

The Youth Dew is a silky hydrating oil that is a blend of 20 essential oils. Made for dry/mature skin types, this is perfect for keep skin dewy in the cold winter. There is also time-stopping COQ10 infused into the oils. The rose and lemon scent is intoxicating, and the fragrance is perhaps the strongest of all the oils on this list but your skin will drink every drop of this incredibly nourishing oil. I personally felt this oil was very silky and rich- with Avocado oil, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, and Jojoba Oil. Standouts are definitely kukui nut oil and rose absolute which gives this product its rose scent. I found that this soothed dry patches around my cheeks and absorbed easily.

Who it’s for: The green beauty who prefers the apothecary to Barneys. The effortlessly cool LA girl. Spirit Beauty Loungers. Think DVF and Missoni crowd – chic, luxurious, refined but down to earth girl with a earthy palette.

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YULI Modern Alchemist ($125/1 oz)

YULI is the epitome of a cult line. They rely solely on word of mouth, preferring to let results speak rather than advertising. And how results have spoken, YULI’s devoted following is well deserved with a diverse clientele ranging from David Furnish and Elton John, to fashion designers such as recent Project Runway favorite Melissa Fleis and emerging designer Alexander Lewis, to the Silicon Valley and Wall Street jetset crowd. YULI is special in that it doesn’t rest on being a green line that uses natural ingredients, true to her chemist background, Yun and her team incorporate each product with the latest in skin technology that rivals the big Swiss brands.

Modern Alchemist is the perfect example. The base is an exquisite facial oil using a blend of rare skin nourishing botanical oils such as Argan, Baobab, Borage, Indian Fig, and Cloudberry. The green technology driven company then infuses the already power-packed potion with a Bio-retinol complex, an Omega-Lipid complex, COQ10, Hyaluronic Acid, and Plant Sterols. This isn’t just a simple facial oil, the luxurious serum is deeply penetrating and instantly uplifts tired dull skin, making it gorgeous and was positively glowing. The glorious golden fluid smells faintly of rose flower petals, made my skin feel like velvet, softened wrinkles, faded fine lines, and gives the wearer the enviable baby-soft skin like no other. This liquid gold is a testament to the power of science + nature.

Who it’s for: Professionals – Silicon Valley, Wall Street types who demand performance over hype; well read beauty junkies who want the most well curated ingredients list. Think The Row, Altuzzara, Alexander Wang crowd of cutting edge, sleek sophistication, infused with modernity.

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