Here’s a funny thing. Bio-Essence is a brand from Singapore available locally in most pharmacies and has been available for years and years. I’d actually watched the brand launch from Day 1 (almost) and truth be told, knowing their origins, I was never very sold on their products or claims so I’ve never tried their products.
Yet, when I saw that this very same product was being sold at almost TRIPLE its price online in the UK, and been given cult status by “gurus” no less, I had to see what the fuss was about! Tsk. The power of suggestion eh?
This, which to give it its full title, is the very wordy Bio-essence Hydra Tri-Action Aqua Droplet Sleeping Beauty Mask *takes deep breath* and the cult status product in question. This is sold at £29 online here which at today’s exchange rate is about RM172. It retails at local pharmacies at RM70 (£11) or so and it could even be much less when it goes on sale, which is often. I purchased this at about RM55 (£9) or thereabouts!
I basically stood in the aisle at Watson’s pharmacy giggling dementedly to myself when I saw the price. I think the sales person left me alone because I looked off my rocker LOL! 😀 This must be what people must feel like when they go to Europe/France and see how cheap French pharmacy skincare is, and how much more expensive they are in other parts of the world or online.
But the big question isn’t about the price, it’s about whether I feel this deserves its raves as a cult product.
My answer is no, it doesn’t.
But it is a pretty interesting product that does a RM55/£9 job. I wouldn’t pay the online asking price so if you have friends in South East Asia, ask them to pick you up a tub.
What makes it interesting? The Aqua Droplets thing. Let me show you how it works.
On left, I’ve shown you a dollop of the product scooped out of the tub. It’s an opaque white and it feels very very silicone-y. A word of warning. You mustn’t be squeamish about silicone in your skincare products if you want to try this because it almost feels like you’re slathering silicone on your skin.
But rub at it and spread it out, and it almost magically creates water droplets on your skin, as you see in the picture on the right. This bit is rather fun. Most of the thick silicone-waxy feel is significantly reduced, but it is still there. It does not absorb fully into my skin, although the water droplets will.
This Bio-essence Tri-Action Sleeping Beauty Mask is first and foremost, marketed as a sleeping mask. So, like all sleeping masks, what you do is, at the end of the day, after cleansing and toning, apply a fairly thick layer of product to your skin, rub it so it turns into water droplets, pat it into your skin and go to sleep. It’s supposed to hydrate and rebalance your skin.
Personally speaking, I find that it gives a bit of an instant boost of hydration to the skin when the water droplets are absorbed, but it doesn’t last. I also won’t use this in the day although they say you can, by using a thin layer of product instead. The reason I say so is because the thick silicone feel puts me off, and it never really absorbs, sitting on the top of my skin like a layer of grime.
The other reason I’m not enamoured with this, is the scent. Not many people mention this, and perhaps some people might even like the scent, but I find it too strong and too floral. It’s not unpleasant, but it’s there and I don’t like it.
If I were going to use a sleeping mask, I’d still pick the Laneige Sleeping Mask for hydration and the Sulwhasoo Overnight Revitalizing Mask for an instant overnight pick-me-up. I’d even pick the sleeping mask from The Body Shop despite it’s strange texture over this, for efficacy; but I now have this, I’ll use it. But it’s not a repurchase, that’s for sure.
At Phil’s suggestion, I sometimes apply a thinnish layer of this mask, get the water droplet action going, then slap a sheet mask on top. It feels much better that way. On its own, I don’t think it deserves the hype nor its cult status. Perhaps it’s the price (relatively speaking) that has people excited about this? Or perhaps the raves by beauty gurus. All I’d say is, it’s an ok product. Not one I’d be shouting from the rooftops about, and definitely not one I’m paying more than its real price for 🙂
IN A NUTSHELL
The Bio-essence Hydra Tri-Action Aqua Droplet Sleeping Beauty Mask is a highly raved product that has been given cult status, but one which I feel falls far short of being a cult product. It is a sleeping mask with a bit of difference, in that when you rub at it, water droplets will appear and sink into the skin. However, it is packed chock-full of silicones that leaves a layer on the skin no matter how much or little you apply. I’d use this only for they say this is – a sleeping mask that you’d use 1-2 times a week. Don’t use it daily because I think there are far better products you can use as a daily hydration serum or cream.
PROS: Affordable, Interesting to activate the water droplets that absorb into the skin for an instant hydration boost
CONS: High content of silicone that leaves a layer of residue on the skin, Highly priced at online stores, Effects are not long lasting, Strongly scented
WHO WILL LIKE THIS: Anyone who doesn’t mind silicone in their products, Anyone who wants to try a fairly inexpensive sleeping mask
Here is the ingredient list of the product for those interested.
Have you tried this Bio-Essence sleeping mask? Do you think it’s worth the cult status it’s been given?
Personally, I feel this product has been hyped beyond its true efficacy. I personally find it just average in performance. As I’ve said above, if you want to try it, buy it during one of the sales at the local pharmacies. If you’re living overseas and really REALLY want to try this, see if you have friends in Malaysia/Singapore or maybe even Hong Kong or China (I’m not sure of the prices in those 2 places) who can help you. But I suppose if all else fails, there’s always Cult Beauty even if it is very much overpriced there! 😀
Bio-essence Hydra Tri-action Aqua Droplet Sleeping Beauty Mask Price: RM70+ | £29 | S$33.90 for 80g Availability: Major pharmacies in Malaysia and Singapore or online at Cult Beauty