Fermented Skincare: A Review of Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner
I want you to know that I’m cracking my knuckles right now, in preparation for typing up this review. It’s a long one, but it’s good, and I’ve been looking forward to writing about this product for a while! If you’re into skincare that is both glamorous and highly functional, get ready to be excited, because today I’m talking about Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner.
I’ve enjoyed Korean and Japanese hydrating toners for a long time now, but I haven’t historically had a lot of favorites in this category. I’m choosy about skincare in general, but I’m particularly choosy when it comes to hydrating toners. I expect a lot out of them! In the past, I’ve definitely had hydrating toners that I liked — maybe even a lot — but that I also found a little boring. Hada-Labo Gokujyun Super Hyaluronic Acid Lotion, for example, is a product I love but find a bit unglamorous. And there were other toners I cherished, but wished they could be just a touch more hydrating. I consider most first essence treatments to be a part of that group.
I was actually in a bit of a toner rut for months. Sad piano music played when I got to the toning step of my skincare routine. My bathroom turned black & white, a-la the “before” clip in any infomercial. But then this Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner came into my life and swept me right off my feet, and all of a sudden my bathroom was full-color again, and my face looked and felt amazing. I’d finally found my toner soulmate!
What is it?
Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is a hydrating toner that also has the properties of an antioxidant-rich essence. It promises to hydrate and improve skin texture.
For anyone unfamiliar with the brand, Whamisa is a Korean brand found in higher-end department stores. The brand places an emphasis on organic, fermented ingredients and produces products that utilize an interesting range of botanical extracts. I’m not one to specifically seek out organic skincare, but say the word “fermented” and I’ll probably take off my top.
*Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract , *Chrysanthemum Morifolium Flower Extract, *Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, *Lactobacillus/Chrysanthemum Sinense Flower Ferment Filtrate, *Lactobacillus/Nelumbo Nucifera Flower Ferment Filtrate, *Lactobacillus/Teraxacum Officinale (Dandelion) Rhizome/Root Ferment Filtrate, Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate, *Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, *Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil, *Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, *Helichrysum Arenarium Flower Extract, *Brassica Oleracea Italica (Broccoli) Extract, *Glycerin, ☆Propanediol, **Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, **Paeonia Suffruticosa Root Extract, **Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract, Lithospermum Erythrorhizon Root Extract, Xanthan Gum, Aniba Rosaeodora (Rosewood) Wood Oil, *Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Oil, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Oil, ***Fragrance
*Certified Organically Grown **Natural Preservative ***Natural Origin ☆Ecocert
The most immediately visible quality of this ingredient list is the number of fermented items it contains. There are a lot, and this is really good news! Here’s why:
What are fermented skincare ingredients?
Fermented skincare ingredients are those that have been through a lacto-fermentation process. Lacto-fermentation is an anaerobic (free of oxygen) process that uses a probiotic called lactobacillus to break down the sugars and proteins in organic matter over a period of time, converting those sugars and proteins into lactic acid. As the fermentation environment acidifies, bacteria and harmful microbes die off, and the ingredients break down into smaller, nutrient-dense constituents, which also allows desirable by-products such as amino acids and peptides to emerge. The end result is a preserved, concentrated, more nourishing version of the original ingredient, which can now be better utilized by the skin.
What makes them special?
There are a couple of reasons why I’ve been welcoming so many fermented skincare products into my life:
1. Fermented ingredients have a higher concentration of antioxidants and nutrients than non-fermented versions of the same ingredients. The fermentation process itself also produces additional skin-beneficial ingredients, such as amino acids and peptides. Additionally, fermentation helps break down the ingredients into more readily absorbed constituents, so the positive effects the ingredients have to offer are experienced more fully.
2. There’s also early but promising scientific evidence that some lactobacillus ferments help treat and prevent acne and rosacea. The mechanism by which this is achieved is still being explored, but the speculation is that this effect is due to a combination of the protective, “shielding” effect lactobacillus provides for skin cells, the antibacterial effect of bacteriocin produced by lactobacillus, and the anti-inflammatory effect of lactobacillus.
Further reading on lactobacillus:
Could probiotics be the next big thing in acne and rosacea treatments?
American Academy of Dermatology, 2014
Lactobacillus reuteri Protects Epidermal Keratinocytes from Staphylococcus aureus-Induced Cell Death by Competitive Exclusion
Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 2012
Additional Ingredient Standouts:
Aloe Barbadensis (Leaf Extract and Juice)
Aloe is a classic skincare ingredient for very good reason. It contains antioxidant properties with vitamins A, C, and E, fatty acids, as well as anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It also provides humectant moisture. It’s fantastic for soothing inflamed acne, alleviating redness, and countering dryness and dehydration.
Possesses antibacterial, antifungal, and significant anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Contains a number of skin-beneficial nutrients, including ascorbic acid (vitamin C), and beta carotene (a precursor for vitamin A).
Lactobacillus/Nelumbo Nucifera Flower Ferment Filtrate
This is a fermented version of Nelumbo Nucifera, which is better known as the lotus. Lotus has antibacterial, antifungal, and significant anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It also contains naturally occurring alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) which, in a formula with the right pH, provides exfoliation benefits. Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner has a pH of 4.5, which is low enough for an AHA to function as a mild exfoliator. Lotus extract also has astringent properties, which has the positive effect of making pore size appear smaller.
More on properties of the lotus:
The Sacred Lotus (Nelumbo Nucifera)- Phytochemical and Therapeutic Profile
Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, 2009
Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil & Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil
Both of these oils provide moisture barrier-strengthening essential fatty acids, as well as a number of antioxidants. They also have emollient properties, which help smooth skin and prevent water loss. The amount of oil in the Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is very light, so this toner isn’t heavy or remotely greasy. There is just enough oil in this formula to help seal in the moisture provided by the formula’s other hydrating ingredients.
Essential oils have a lot to offer skincare formulations when used conservatively, as they have been in this formula. Aniba Rosaeodora (Rosewood) Wood Oil and Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Oil both have antibacterial and antiseptic properties. Cymbopogon Schoenanthus (Lemongrass) Oil is antifungal, antibacterial, and antiseptic.
There are no major potential acne or irritation triggers in this formula according to CosDNA.
Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is packed in a frosted glass bottle with a beautiful overlay of pink flowers. The flower artwork nicely compliments the look of the liquid behind the frosted glass. It’s a fun, modern, but sophisticated presentation. The dispenser for the product is of the standard flat-top-with-a-tiny-hole-in-the-middle variety, making it easy to dispense the right amount of product without spilling it onto your countertop.
The product itself has a texture that is thicker than water. It’s slightly more viscous than what I typically think of as toner consistency, but it’s still very light and fluid.
Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner smells intensely like flowers, with a hint of citrus. It’s a strong but pleasant scent, which dissipates within a few minutes of application. The fragrance is said to be naturally sourced, so if you are sensitive to synthetic fragrance, you may still be able to tolerate the fragrance in this toner.
The pH for the Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is 4.5. This toner does contain a small amount of AHA constituents, which function optimally as exfoliants between pH 3.0 and 3.9, and modestly at pH 4.0- 4.9. This toner has some very mild exfoliating benefits, and can also act as a pH adjuster for skin after cleansing if desired.
Although Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner could theoretically be used as a pH-adjuster immediately after cleansing, I actually prefer to use it later in my routine, for my hydrating toner step. As soon as I’ve completed my 15-20 minute wait time after applying actives (such as BHA and AHA), I shake a few drops into my hand – about the size of an almond, sometimes a little less. I then pat the toner over my face, and immediately begin layering my additional serums and ampoules over it.
Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is heaven. My first impressions of it were that it was wonderfully light but still deeply hydrating. It also felt extremely soothing and cool upon application.
I’ve been using it for nearly two months now, and I’ve noticed a number of positive changes in my skin. One observation is that my skin actually stays completely hydrated throughout the day, even if I’ve spent a lot of time in a dry, air-conditioned environment.
Any redness I experience is now easily handled. I don’t have big redness issues in general, but sometimes when I go a little hard with my AHA serum, I get redness in my cheeks from the irritation. I try to avoid it as much as possible, but my routine contains a lot of actives, and though they work wonders for my skin, it’s easy to accidentally cross a line. But now I just pat a little Deep Rich Essence Toner on my red areas, and the redness subsides within a couple of minutes.
I’ve also noticed a significant decrease in breakouts. My acne has been under control for a long time now, thankfully, but I’m still prone to small, manageable breakouts around certain times in my cycle. But I haven’t really seen any since I’ve incorporated this toner into my routine, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence.
Overall, my skin looks and feels hydrated, smooth, clear, and luminous. There are a lot of products to thank for my skin’s current condition – it wasn’t always like this – but Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner definitely helped me take to the next level.
It had been a long time since I truly loved a toner, but I’m happy to report that the magic is back! Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner is an amazing addition to my skincare routine, and I’m glad that I welcomed its seductive, flowery, fermented goodness into my life.
Who I think would benefit from this product:
• Normal, dry, and combination skin types who would like light but rich hydration in their skincare routine.
• Anyone suffering from dehydrated skin or a damaged moisture barrier.
• Anyone who would like the moisturizing benefits of a hydrating toner combined with the skin-beneficial ingredient concentration of an essence.
• People who want to use organic skincare products. The ingredients for Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner are 97.13% organically grown.
• Anyone who is seeking to avoid alcohol in their skincare.
• People who regularly deal with redness or sensitivity (with the exception of those who are very sensitive to essential oils)
Skin & Tonics Rating
|A+||20/20 Efficacy||19/20 Ingredients||20/20 Application||20/20 Wear||20/20 Packaging|
|Total: 99||Rating system details »|
Where to Buy
If you'd like to pick up the WhamisaOrganic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner, you can find it on Glow recipe. You can get a $5 coupon toward your first Glow Recipe Purchase with my affiliate link: http://go.referralcandy.com/share/DKWDT7V
If you follow me on Instagram (I'm skinandtonics ), you'll also have a chance to win a bottle of Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner! I'm hosting an Instagram-only giveaway for this product, courtesy of Glow Recipe. Keep an eye on your IG feed for details.
|Glow Recipe Natural Korean beauty products shipped from the U.S.||$40||Get a $5 coupon toward your first Glow Recipe Purchase with my affiliate link: http://go.referralcandy.com/share/DKWDT7V Glow Recipe ships from the U.S. International shipping also available for Australia, Belgium, Canada, Costa Rica, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Sweden, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, UAE, Vietnam and UK .||buy|
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