Sunday, 28 April 2013

Review: Mizon Sakura Whitening Dual Mini Kit - Mela Defense White Capsule Essence & Cream

Today I have a really exciting review that I can't find anywhere else on the Internet (or maybe I'm not looking hard enough XD) - it's a sample kit I got from my first Koreadepart order that I have used now I've ran out of my Garnier moisturiser. The kit is called Sakura Whitening Dual Mini Kit and is part of the Sakura Whitening line/program. All the items are called 'Mela Defense...'. This is exciting to me as I've never tried skincare solely dedicated to whitening of the skin tone, only products that say it's part of their benefits but never really deliver.

Whitening products don't contain harmful ingredients like bleach or lead, they instead contain natural ingredients designed to brighten your skin tone, especially particularly dark spots in your skin so your skin looks whiter because it's more glowy and bright, not because it's actually bleaching away your skin colour! /sweat Worryingly, it does say that it prevents your skin from producing melatonin though, which your body makes to combat sun damage and protect skin.

Brand: Mizon
Names: Mela Defense White Capsule Essence & Mela Defense White Capsule Cream
Price: $71.50 for the full 4pc set; toner, ampoule/serum x 2, essence & cream, usually $130 plus a free gift of Egg White Bubble Cleanser (full size). $45 on Mizon's official eBay for just the toner, essence and cream.
Where to buy: Koreadepart, eBay (Mizoncorp)

The essence says it is 'intensive care for dark spots', brightens the complexion, 'stabilized capsule prevents the production of melatonin', helps skin circulation to get blood flowing and brighten up the skin tone and forms a moisturising layer for long lasting effects.

The cream 'keeps the face transparent, enhancing the water retaining power' and keeps the face brightened and vibrant by protecting it from outside stress'.

All the items have varied benefits, suggesting they were all made to fit together nicely and enhance the whole whitening experience. I think if you're serious about whitening skincare, it's best to use the items from this line together rather than lots of different products from different brands.

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Both items come in a pretty little box and all the packaging is very lovely. It's cute but in a more grown-up way as Mizon is mid to high end and for maturer women.

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Here's the cream and essence, left to right respectively. I love the dainty pink and white packaging with the white cherry blossom silhouette on it. Absolutely beautiful! You get about 10ml of both essence and cream and I got a weeks worth out of using both together.

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Here's the essence on my hand. You can see it's a thin, clear gel with white capsules in it - neat! I use this sized amount for my whole face but it looks a little more because it slid down my hand. :P You can feel the capsules when you first apply the essence ever so slightly but they disappear almost immediately.

The essence feels watery as you apply it and is quickly absorbed. I pat half of the amount on one cheek, then the rest on the other and rub in. Halfway through, I rub my hands together to get all the essence on it and rub it all over my face.

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Here's the cream. It's a gel-type cream and looks clear in the pot but compared to white paper, is a very pale pink actually.

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It has a mottled, white substance running throughout the cream, similar to the capsules in the essence but in more volume. They don't feel like anything whilst applying.

The gel-like cream is very light whilst being applied but more moisturising than the essence. I put on a bit more cream than essence to make sure my face is as hydrated as possible. I was worried these gel-like products wouldn't be enough for my dry skin and my skin would quickly revert back to dry, flaky patches and tightness but it seems okay. My skin doesn't feel super hydrated and plump, it feels matte and silky and there aren't any dry patches. I feel like I'm teetering on the border of 'just barely hydrated' and 'not hydrated enough'.  
Both the essence and cream smell lovely - they have a cherry blossom scent, fittingly but the essence smells nicer than the cream. It smells a bit lighter and more natural whilst the cream smells a bit artificial and overpowering. You can't smell it whilst applying though.
I guess durability here means the long term effects and whether it actually whitens skin or not! :P

I took a before and after picture, which I don't usually do with skincare as you can't see the difference but I was hoping you could with this product.

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Before                                                                                After

I have a bit of red mottling without make-up on and after only a week's use of these products, I'm quite surprised! It's not a million times better but you can definitely see improvement. It's even better in real life too. The mottling is improved and my skin tone is more even, even without make-up on and is has even brightened up my under-eye circles. I have this weird little red blemish on my nose that I was hoping these products would improve but there's no change on that, sadly.

The matte, silky feel of these products has stuck with prolonged use of the essence and cream. My skin doesn't feel particularly dry but very silky throughout the day. No dry patches show up when I wear make-up either. I could do with a bit more hydration but it's not the worst for my skin. I've actually been using Be The Skin Power Nutrition toner with royal jelly in it whilst I've been using these products, hoping it will give my skin a bit more hydration alongside the essence and cream. I've also taken to spraying Holika Holika's Aqua Petit Jelly Make-up Fixer after my skincare routine now too, hoping it will lock in moisture and I don't seem to be having problems yet using either of those additional problems.

Also - look at my weird attached earlobe! LOOK AT IT. That side is worse than my right side too, worryingly. ^^; I also got rid of my weird babyfluff almost-sideburns too during the week. I do it every so often but the hair removal blade I use (it's one of those 'eyebrow trimmers' you can get from places like The Saem and Missha but can use on your arms, face, etc.) kind of pulls the hair unpleasantly and it kind of hurts. :(
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As a standard essence and moisturiser, they aren't too bad in terms of hydration, feel, long term effects, etc., even for my dry skin. I'd still prefer something with a bit more hydration, just to be on the safe side but this would be excellent for normal, combination and oily skin types.

For whitening, I was actually mildly impressed at the noticeable brightening the products gave my skin in just a week. I can imagine if you used this all the time it would have even better effects. It has made my skin look brighter and more even as well as having a lovely, silky feel to it. If this was more moisturising, I would definitely purchase the full sized items. Maybe I will try Vitamin C items next? They are supposedly good for brightening skin too, as well as plumping and nourishment. I give these products 4/5 stars!

Have you tried any whitening products? Any recommendations?


  1. Oh wow, there's definitely an improvement in the redness! Very cool, thanks for the review! C:

    1. Thank you, glad others can notice too! I really like it but will try other products before sticking to it. <3

  2. Wow, it looks both cool and cute, though a bit over the budget I usually spend for skincare... Yeah, I believe most whitening products target tyrosinase, which is one of the key enzymes responsible for melanin production. On the other hand, one wears 50+ sunscreen on the face anyway, so I suppose that putting some whitener on the face and neck shouldn't cause much damage... I heard that some brands use pretty nasty stuff for their whitening products though, so it's cool that this set it pretty mild and still gets some results.

    1. That's really interesting to know, thank you! I'm not too up on the science/terminology side of cosmetics but I think I'm slowly learning, just through sheer volume! XD Yeah, I heard some can contain stuff like bleach but all the ones I've seen so far seem really nice and mild, containing stuff like blue flower extracts, etc.

      And yeah, I guess using whitening products whilst the 50SPF sunscreen is blocking the sun anyway wouldn't be so bad! :)

  3. Thanks for the great review! I'm opting to try another whitening product and settling down on this 2. Yours is the only review that i can find ;) Thanks a lot :D

    1. I'm glad you like, you're very welcome! Thank you for commenting! Yeah, I made this review as I couldn't find any others so I thought it might help people! ^^