Skin & Tonics : Skincare Guides & Product Reviews

Skincare guides & product reviews for hydration lovers & the moisture barrier obsessed

Horse Oil, Skincare, & a Review of the Famous Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

The first thing you should know before I get into this Guerisson 9 Complex Cream Review is that I get more excited when hearing about a weird new skin care ingredient than I do about almost anything else. Did a food scientist suddenly discover that chocolate cake actually makes you lose weight if you just add more butter and chocolate? That’s cool, I guess. Did a chemist discover that toucan saliva may stimulate collagen synthesis?  OUTTA MY WAY! I gotta get my hands on a toucan saliva serum, RIGHT NOW!

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

It’s not that I’m on a desperate quest for eternal youth. My skincare philosophy is not about trying to find some magic potion that will make me look twenty-five forever; it’s about ensuring my skin is always in the best health it can be in for my age. My attraction to unusual ingredients actually comes from a place of wanting my skincare products to be just as fun as they are effective, and you know what? The weirdo ingredients are fun! And every once in a while, one of them works!

So, in theory, I should have been really excited about horse oil, which has soared in popularity as a skincare ingredient in Korea this year. But I wasn’t excited. I was troubled. And “troubled” is decidedly unfun. The reason I was put off is that horse oil is a byproduct of the horse meat industry, meaning it comes from slaughtered horses. I’m not a vegan, or even a vegetarian. I eat steak and I love fine leather goods, so it’s a bit hypocritical for me to feel this way. But to someone like myself, who lives in a part of the world that does not have a horse meat industry, the idea is shocking. Horses are wedged solely in the “companion animal” compartment of my brain, right alongside dogs and cats.

To be clear, I pass no judgment on the fact that horse meat is a popular dish in many countries throughout Europe and Central Asia. I hear it’s pretty delicious actually, and if, in my travels, I’m presented with the opportunity to try it, I would consider it. But rubbing horse oil on my face in the name of beauty? I feel guilty just thinking about it.

But not guilty enough to not try it, it turns out. My curiosity eventually reached a tipping point and I picked up a couple of jars of the highly acclaimed Guerisson 9 Complex Cream, which is the horse oil product that inspired the ingredient’s immense popularity.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

The Guerisson 9 Complex Cream brand also has a bit of a complicated history. It’s manufactured by a company called Claire’s, but just as its popularity began to soar due to an endorsement by actress Lee Ha-nui, another manufacturer, IM; Beauty (note: that semi-colon is not a typo, it’s just a weird company name), emerged to file its own trademark, and dispute the validity of the original Claire’s trademark application. Both Claire’s and IM; Beauty claim to have invested the research and development for the Guerisson 9 Complex Cream product. The legal battle continues between the two companies, and until it’s resolved, both companies will continue to manufacture the Guerisson 9 Complex Cream, though there are reportedly some differences between the two formulas. As for me—I decided to err on the side of Claire’s for my purchase. The Claire’s cream is the one that shot the product to fame, and they also filed the original trademark. If new information emerges that proves IM; Beauty is the rightful owner of the trademark and the formula, I’ll keep an open mind, but until that happens, I’m personally declaring Claire’s the true original.

More on the trademark dispute:
Horse Oil Trademark Dispute (Chinese)
“Who is the Real Mayu Cream” Debate (Korean)

As if that didn’t complicate my purchase decision enough, there was also the issue of counterfeit Guerisson 9 Complex Cream products to consider. Despite the genuine product’s extremely reasonable price point, the market is absolutely flooded with fake versions of this cream, which contain unknown (and potentially dangerous) ingredients. The counterfeit creams are abundant enough that there are several online resources dedicated solely to identifying counterfeit versions of the Guerisson 9 product. In some instances, the sellers carrying the fake product don’t even realize what they have isn’t real. Thankfully, Memebox carries the Guerisson 9 Complex Cream, and it is the genuine article. Memebox has the budget and staff to enforce the vetting process necessary for weeding out shady suppliers, so I trusted them as my purchasing source for this review. There are also a few long-time K-beauty sellers on eBay who I can confirm are selling the genuine Guerisson 9 Complex Cream. I am sure there are more out there, but my advice is this: check the seller reviews, do a Google search for real vs. fake Guerisson 9 Complex Cream, and be vigilant if you purchase this product.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

What is it?

Guerisson 9-Complex Cream is a moisturizing cream that promises to rejuvenate, smooth, and soften skin while lightening hyperpigmentation and reducing the appearance of wrinkles.


Purified water, Glycerin, Shea Butter, Horse Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Butylene Glycol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Niacinamide, Cetyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Olivate, Beeswax, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Sorbitan Olivate, Cyclohexanone Siloxane, Sodium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Snail Slime Filtrate, Bixa Seed Oil, Titanium Dioxide, Peppermint Leaf Extract, Apple Mint Leaf Extract, Sage Leaf Extract, Rosemary Leaf Extract, Lavender Flower Extract, Melissa Officinalis Leaf Extract, Chamomile Extract Leaf, Monarda Didyma Leaf Extract, Betaine, Tocopheryl Acetate, Aluminum Hydroxide, Hydrated Silica, Disodium Stearyl Sulfosuccinamate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Fragrance, Centella Asiatica Extract, Green Tea Extract, Ligularia Fischeri Extract, Carbomer, Polysorbate 20, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Soybean Oil, Human Oligopeptide-1, Lecithin, Astaxanthin, Xanthan Gum, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Boswellia Serrata Resin Extract, Adenosine, Disodium EDTA, Octyldodecanol, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Ceramide 3, Phenoxyethanol

Here’s the thing about this ingredient list: it’s really beautiful, especially for someone with dry skin. Even without its horse oil headliner, the Guerisson 9-Complex Cream is like an all-star reunion cast of many of my favorite antioxidant-rich plant oils and extracts, brighteners, scar lighteners, and barrier strengtheners.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

First, let’s take a look at the star ingredient:

Horse Oil

There is a lot of chatter about the healing properties of horse oil around the internet, and though that may be true, I couldn’t find any specific studies on its wound healing abilities. The other positive horse oil attribute that often gets mentioned is its easy absorption rate due to a fatty acid structure said to be similar to that of human sebum. I decided to take a closer look at this.

Interestingly, the only information I could find on the fatty acid structure of horse oil was in one of a cluster of studies done back in the 50s comparing the structures of various animal fats, including human fat. Human sebum, by the way, is comprised of fat with a little keratin and cell debris (added for flavor!), so I figured this was about as close as I was going to get. According to those studies, horse fat does have a closer structure to human fat than that of the pig, sheep, rat, and cow. But you know what’s even closer in structure to human fat than horse fat? Dog fat. The more you know, I guess?

Now for a look at just a few of my favorite ingredients in this formula:

Ceramide 3

If you’ve ever read my article regarding the importance of pH and the skin’s moisture barrier, you’ll understand why I love seeing ceramide as an ingredient in any skincare product. Ceramides are a family of lipid molecules that occur naturally on their own in healthy skin, and in conjunction with our skin’s natural lipids and keratinocytes, they form a protective outer barrier that helps to keep bacteria out and water in. Ceramides in skincare products can help repair a weakened barrier or strengthen a healthy barrier, especially when combined with fatty acids such as those found in the many oils contained in this formula.The addition of cholesterol to this cream’s ingredient lineup would have made the ceramide content even more beneficial, but I’ll take what I can get when it comes to ceramides.


Niacinamide is a form of Vitamin B3 that works well for overall brightening, lightening hyperpigmentation, and acne. This is a well-documented skincare ingredient. One study even showed it to be effective for reducing fine lines in addition to treating redness and hyperpigmentation:

Niacinamide: A B Vitamin that Improves Aging Facial Skin Appearance
Dermatologic Surgery, 2006

Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate

This ingredient is actually a newer form of antioxidant vitamin C. It’s far more light and air stable than L-AA (the most effective form of vitamin C), though it doesn’t pack as powerful a punch. It’s significantly less likely to be irritating though, so that’s good news for those with sensitive skin. It’s been shown to exhibit anti-acne effects in concentrations of 1% and higher due to its antibacterial activity.


I’m grouping the Human Oligopeptide-1 and Palmitoyl Oligopeptide together for this summary, even though there are differences between the two. But generally speaking, oligopeptides, often marketed as EGF (an acronym for Epidermal Growth Factor) in skincare products, are molecules that are used in medicine to help treat wounds and burns, assisting in the regrowth of skin. They work by increasing cell growth, and in addition to helping with cell and blood vessel growth, they also play a role in collagen and elastin production.

There were no major red flags to report according to COSDNA, though soybean oil did score a 3 as a potential acne trigger.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream




Guerisson 9 Complex Cream comes with cylindrical outer package that was clearly inspired by Hermés. Inside the outer package is the jar that contains the actual product. The jar itself is adorned with a label bearing the signature Guerisson 9 horse head, and a rather elaborate gold-toned lid embossed with the product name.

The cream is a very light, buttery, yellow. The texture of the cream appears firm but yielding.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream


Guerisson 9 Complex Cream smells fresh and citrusy. People have likened it to lemon zest, but I think it smells almost exactly like grapefruit. The scent of oil is also faintly detectable, but the citrus fragrance dominates.


I applied a pea- to hazelnut-sized amount of cream as the last step in my skincare routine in the evening, and second to last step of my routine in the morning. In the morning I followed up with my sunscreen, and in the evening I occasionally followed up with a sleeping pack.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream is very rich, but spreads easily and was readily absorbed by my skin. There was a very slight tackiness to the finish immediately after application. The tackiness wasn’t bothersome or noticeable unless I looked for it, and disappeared anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes after application. In the morning, I thought it might pose a problem for makeup application, but it didn’t. Once I applied my sunscreen, only the finish of the sunscreen was evident, and I was able to apply my makeup as usual.

Guerisson 9 Complex Cream


I used Guerisson 9 Complex Cream for about 2 months, and in terms of performance, I really liked it. It was richly moisturizing, made my skin look luminous, and it didn’t break me out. It also wore surprisingly well under makeup, which I did not expect given the richness of this cream. I found it especially soothing on an occasion when I went a little overboard with AHA, and in general, I found it to be very effective in terms of calming redness and irritation. My skin is already bright thanks to the many other lightening products my routine lineup (AHAs, vitamin C, retinoids, azealic acid), so I can’t really speak to this cream’s brightening abilities. Same goes for hyperpigmentation — the few tiny PIH spots I had did lighten during my usage of this product, but because I’m using so many other power lighteners, it would be silly for me to credit the Guerisson 9 with that gain.

In addition to using it on my face, I also used Guerisson 9 Complex Cream on a patch of eczema that appeared on the back of my hand. I found it to be not only soothing, but also healing—that eczema patch was gone within days.

I do think Guerisson 9 Complex Cream would be too rich for someone with oily skin, unless they wanted to use it as an occasional sleeping pack. Someone with combination skin might be able to enjoy this cream, especially if their dry patches were especially bothersome.

As well as it performed, I couldn’t bring myself to enjoy using it because I felt guilty about liking it. I was never able to get beyond my horses-as-companion-animals state of mind, and consequently, each time I used the Guerisson 9 Complex Cream, I felt a little bit like Cruella de Vil.

I find it commendable that there is a viable use for this by-product — pragmatically speaking, the fewer parts that go to waste in any farming industry, the better. I could make my peace with horse oil intellectually, but emotionally speaking, even though it performed very well, Guerisson 9 Complex Cream could never be a staple in my routine.

Who I think would benefit from this product:

• Normal, dry, and some combination skin types who would like rich, occlusive moisture in their routine
• People suffering from dehydrated skin or a damaged moisture barrier
• People who regularly deal with redness or sensitivity
• People who don’t have complicated feelings about the origin of horse oil

Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Extremely moisturizing
    Smooth, easily absorbed texture
    Wears well under makeup
    Imparts a nice "glow"
    Smells amazing
  • Could be too rich for oily skin types
    Made me feel a bit like a Disney Villain

Skin & Tonics Rating

B+ 20/20 Efficacy 11/20 Ingredients 20/20 Application 18/20 Wear 18/20 Packaging
Total: 87 Rating system details »

Where to Buy

Store Price Offers
Memebox Dedicated to bringing you the latest in Korean beauty trends and product $20 ($17 w/ coupon) Use code MAKEUPLOVE at checkout for 15% off your order! buy
eBay Cosmetic.Love $10 Ships free from Korea. buy

This post contains affiliate links. Shopping these links helps support this site. For detailed information about what this means, see my full disclosure. »


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70 comments onHorse Oil, Skincare, & a Review of the Famous Guerisson 9 Complex Cream

  1. KP

    Thanks for the review! I’ve had a morbid curiosity about this cream for a while, but know I could never get over rubbing the oil of any critter on my skin (no judgement, honestly). I’m curious if you would recommend any moisturizer that contains the other ingredients of interested you listed sans animal based fats? Thanks so much!

    • I don’t know of any yet, KP, but I’m on the hunt! I would also love to find a similar formula!

      • Angel

        Well there’s this:

        “The toucan tongue is long, almost the full stretch of their roughly 7 inch long beak. The main length of the tongue is thin, grey-white in color, and frayed along the edges, almost having the appearance of a feathered fishing line (I do realize that feathered fishing line does not exist, but if it did – this is exactly what it would look like!). The base of their tongue resembles more of a traditional tongue – thicker, pink, and moist with saliva. And the icing on this stunning cake? The back of their throat is blue.”

        I think you’re on to something Kerry. I bet there’s a magical peptide which makes the toucan’s throat blue. It probably clears acne, regenerates cells and diminishes wrinkles overnight. Let me know when you get your hands on it 😀

  2. I come from a culture that used to eat horse meat. I live in a country where horse meat sashimi (yep, raw) is considered a delicacy.
    I have a pack of horse oil sheet masks and… Just. Can’t. Bring. Myself. To. Use. Them.
    I don’t think I’ll be getting this cream any time soon.
    But yep, it seems that horse is the new snail.

    • I’ll take snails over horses any day! 😀

      • But harvesting slime on industrial scale is brutal as hell. Poor snails 🙁
        At least those horses were already dead.
        Decisions decisions…

        • That’s depressing! Do you happen know of any good sources I can read about the slime harvesting process? Everything I’ve ever been able to find on the subject has always neglected to go into any detail about it.

          • Sadly, not in English. There are some materials published in Japanese and targeted at snail farmers. According to them, abrasive surfaces and low level electric shocks are used to stimulate slime production.

        • cheese4lyf

          They do not harm horses, they just take the fat and it doesn’t harm the horses.

  3. I dont think I have the conscious of buying this cream..forget about putting it on my face..even if I get it for free. My conscious will probably get better off me..having said industry is evolving at a pace I certainly cannot keep up with! I just bought the missha cell renew snail sleeping mask and have tried once and actually quite liked it…i think ill stick with snails as of now

  4. Nicole

    Am I the only person who is now wondering if toucan saliva serum is a new thing? 😀
    Thanks for the awesome review, so happy you are blogging again! (And totes pre-ordering the book you and Coco wrote!)

    • LOL, thanks Nicole! It’s funny you should mention that. As I was writing that part I legitimately thought to myself, “Maybe there really IS something in toucan saliva! Wait. Do toucans even have saliva?”

  5. My favourite part of that cream is when we first cracked it open and put it on and you said “Oh no! Oh god, no, I think I really like this!” because we felt guilty it was made of horses lol.

  6. Samrin

    I just discovered your blog when I was researching Korean skincare and love all the reviews and great information. I also plan to incorporate a lot of products that go into your morning and evening routine. However I’m 50 with mature and dry skin and my skincare concerns are different than yours. I’d love to also find a blog devoted to Korean and Japanese skincare curated by a blogger with similar skin issues. I would be very grateful if you could point me in that direction. Thanks so much!

    • Hi Samrin! Unfortunately, most of the skincare bloggers I know are either in their late 30s like myself, or in their mid 20s to early 30s. If you do happen to find blogger that has concerns that more closely match your own, please let me know! I’m always looking for more resources to share. 🙂

    • FD

      I would strongly recommend Also on YouTube,Instagram and Twitter etc. she is in the same age group as yourself and does great reviews. She also has a great personality! She’s connected to many in the beauty industry so you’ll find yourself going off in tangents reading and watching other people.
      But I do think this is a great blog,and many of the products can be used for most age groups. I’ve purchased several things based on Kerry’s reviews. The Sum: rose cleansing stick is delicious and doesn’t dry the skin. I would just add the Caroline Hirons recommends using a washcloth for the second cleanse and I’ve found this makes such a positive difference.

      • Zoya Blake

        I’m in my mid fifties and this product is great for my dry skin. I also use l’occitane with Shea butter on my neck to stop it going crêpe-y. Thanks for your review! I read it before I bought the cream.

  7. Diane

    I purchased a jar to try when in Seoul, because when in Rome and all that. I didn’t really know what to expect and was pretty surprised at how much I liked using this cream. I loved the buttery feel and how it just melted right into my skin. I found it very moisturizing and that it worked extremely well under my makeup. I didn’t experience that middle of the day tightness that would sometimes happen with other products I have tried. And as a bonus, I had no breakouts.

    All that being said, I really dislike the fragrance of this cream. To me it smells like a toned down version of Lemon Scented Easy Off Oven Cleaner. And I just can’t get past this.(Sigh) It’s really too bad too, because I so enjoyed using it.

  8. Maggi

    I think if people were really concerned about horses or animals that they would do better to look at their sheet mask consumption rate. All those layers of packaging and plastic are far more detrimental to the environment and ultimately impact the lives of animals far more than the use of horse oil in cosmetics. If anything the usage of horse oil in cosmetics is environmentally friendly as it uses the whole of the animal from nose to tail. Far better than to just let it go to waste.

    I know that skinandtonics is actually not all that crazy about sheet masks and only uses them occasionally but when I think of all the 1mask/1day goals that people are setting I cringe at the thought of all the landfill waste being generated.

    • That’s interesting, Maggi! I must admit, I hadn’t given that aspect of sheet masks a lot of thought before, but your comment makes me wonder how to paper/fiber for those types of sheet masks are sourced. I’ve noticed a recently emergence of more sheet masks made from alternative materials that are 100% biodegradable such as the kelp masks and some hydro gels made from plant cellulose. I’m guessing that some mask manufacturers have heard some of the concerns you just expressed. One hydro gel mask I recently tried is made from a plant cellulose that actually melts in hot water. That would be in interesting direction for sheet masks to take, assuming the plants themselves are growing at a sustainable rate.

      • Maggi

        It first struck me the first time I undid a hydrogel mask and there was separate plastic backing for each piece inside of the plastic envelope it was contained in. Then I tried another mask that actually had two pieces of plastic backing, one in the back and a thinner sheet in the front. I thought, ‘this is ridiculous!!!!’. Not only was it a pain to try to figure out how to get it on my face but it all seemed totally unnecessary.

        So, yes, it great that they are making the masks themselves out of more sustainable material but I’m actually more concerned with the millions of pieces of plastic packaging the mask. Like I said in my original comment, this is far more worrying than using a by-product of the meat industry. I love animals and I get that people are sentimental about them but PETA style animal rights doesn’t always serve the bigger picture.

        • Khaosbutterfly

          Yes, I always appreciate masks that don’t include backing for this exact reason. I wish more mask companies would do away with the backing, because even though it’s convenient, it’s not necessary and will even cut down on their manufacturing costs. Even though I love masks and use them frequently, I always feel a bit guilty when I go to take my garbage out and it is full of sheet mask packaging.

          The bulk bagged masks are a good idea in theory, but they dry out at the end because you have to keep opening and closing the package. They also aren’t as potent as many individually wrapped masks…they really are only good for general hydration, so if you’re accustomed to using the individual ones, it’s tough to transition to the more low-yield daily masks.

    • Maggi, that is one of the reasons why most companies in Japan package their masks into resealable bags, 10 or 15 or 30 masks to a bag. To cut down on hard to recycle plastic waste.

      • Maggi

        Yes! I think those bulk mask packs are a great idea. I haven’t personally tried them but I have heard that the masks tend to be thinner and have less essence therefore ideally suiting a 1mask/day habit whereas the thicker traditional sheet masks are suited for a weekly treat.

        I know people love their masks but I think the waste generated bears some thinking about and I hope these bulk mask packs become more popular amongst those who want to mask daily.

  9. Diane

    It is available in most health and beauty stores in Seoul. Olive Young, Watson and Boons all carry it. There are a few othe stores in Myeongdong that carry this cream as well. I do believe that the parent company, Claire’s, has also opened up their own store right in Myeongdong too. It’s not a hard product to find.

  10. Ashley

    I saw this when looking around on Amazon at my recommendations but I actually raise horses so and can just imagine the accusing stares if they smelled this on me . I hate horse slaughter but if they are going to do it then using the entire horse is best.

    • Oh man! The guilt I would feel wearing this cream around live horses would be insane! And I agree with you 100%- if they’re going to do it anyway, then less waste is good.

  11. Rosie

    Hi Kerry,

    Have you ever tried the products from Tatcha and Wawaza (both Japanese brands)?

    • Tatcha is actually an American brand, it’s not even sold in Japan! It’s manufactured (at least some of their products) and mostly formulated in Japan, it’s primary market is anywhere but Japan.
      Probably because women here would just roll their eyes at the PR tales of geisha beauty secrets that Tatcha is using to push their products.

  12. Jennifer

    Like you, I would have a problem using the product without feeling guilty, though I certainly don’t condemn others for using it, since the oil would just be wasted anyway. I eat meat (though my brain more and more wants to be a vegetarian I think), but I can’t bring myself to eat certain animals, and I would feel like I was somehow supporting the horse meat industry by using this cream. I can’t use the starfish cream for the same reason, even though a starfish is a far cry from a horse. (Don’t want dead starfish on my face! Bad karma!) But these “interesting” ingredients in skincare products remind me of the Hong Kong film, Dumplings, directed by Fruit Chan. In the film, a woman who’s an OB-GYN who makes special dumplings that keep people’s skin looking young. The secret ingredient (don’t read if you’re faint of heart) is aborted fetuses she collects from China. Yup, a totally disturbing film, but it makes for an interesting social commentary, and sometimes I think this kind of disturbing ingredient isn’t that unlikely (and some would say it’s just using a byproduct of the abortion industry), especially when I see placenta products. I guess what it comes down to is, what line won’t we cross? It’s a slippery slope.

    • That movie sounds interesting! I’ll have to see if I can track it down. Do you know if any of the streaming services have it?

      Also, regarding the starfish – I’ve heard from others that the species of starfish used in that cream is a “pest” species. If that’s true (and I truly have no idea if it is), then theoretically it would be similar to the horse oil, where the starfish would be dying anyway, and the cream is getting some use out of a by-product that would otherwise be thrown away.

  13. Khaosbutterfly

    Aw, I’m sorry that you couldn’t fully enjoy the product.
    I feel the same about pig collagen…normally, I’m not too squeamish about animal by-product and I adore meat, but if you’ve ever looked a pig in the eye or watched it cutely gambol through the mud with its other piggy friends, it’s hard to want to smear it on your face. They’re just so intelligent and cute. I still want to eat them because they also happen to be delicious and my greed is stronger than my sense of compassion (sad by true), but rubbing them on my face is just a bit gratuitous for me.
    Oddly, it’s the opposite for me when it comes to horses….I definitely don’t want to eat them but wouldn’t mind rubbing them on my face.

    Sadly, the ingredient list would be disastrous for me so I can’t partake of this product, but it really does sound lovely.

    Thanks for the awesome review, as always!

    • I can totally see that re: pigs. In general, the animal ingredients can get really upsetting really quickly, even if they are made from leftovers from another industry. It definitely makes me evaluate my own personal boundaries, which I suppose is a good thing!

  14. Samrin

    Thanks 2cats. Have already checked out your blog!

  15. Sanae Robinson

    OMG, Kerry you’re back! I literally *squealed* when I realized you were back almost a week ago (I’m actually still squealing as I’m writing this… Haha)!! Much has happened since reading the above post, or rather …a lot of money has departed my wallet and has been added to the ‘prevent the ‘alligator-saggy-wrinkly- must keep my glow on- skin’ cause. So far I have a very good feeling about it. I started with the pre-order of your upcoming book, so excited for this and so well deserved! Your writing style and knowledge about all things skin related is captivating and I can’t wait to have this baby in my hands in a few months. Yay! 🙂
    After amazon I stopped by club Clio’s website and bought your summer curated box. I was amazed at how fast I received my products, by excited about this one. I have so far only been able to try both the sunscreens and I have to say I love them! Apart from Shiseido, I have never had the pleasure of trying out Asian sunscreens and I have to say it was such a pleasant surprise! I love how they melted into my skin, didn’t leave a white cast and worked so well under my makeup, two thumbs up for that! Other then that I haven’t tried any of the other goodies included in the box. I was surprised that the box didn’t exactly contain all the products you hand selected and approved. The waterest vital sleeping pack was left out and substituted by the moisture barrier cream. Don’t know if I should be happy about this substitution? Have you ever tried? Any thoughts? I tend to love sleeping mask products so I was actually really looking forward to this one 🙁
    Then I visited the Glow Recipe website and purchased Whamisa Organic Flowers Deep Rich Essence Toner, one of the hydrogels and the organics flower cream ( added those last two per your praise in one of the comments you made to one of your subbies). Received these products earlier this week as well but haven’t tried. And then (yes, I’m getting a little ashamed at this point) I went and purchased the Guerisson 9 Complex Cream (which I also received this week) because I don’t really have a problem with the use of horse oil having lived pretty much my whole life (up to 5 years ago when I moved to Florida) in The Netherlands where the consumption of horsemeat is very common. Is that unethical? I don’t know. Then again I love my leather goods and enjoy eating meat at times as well so there’s that. Those poor animals don’t stand a chance with us humans. We don’t eat them, we wear them on our bodies and now we smear them all over our bodies. OK long rant over 🙂
    Just wanted to say that I love that you’re back blogging and sharing again. Did I express how much I love you again, I really do! 🙂 xo Sanae

    • Thank so much Sanae!! <3

      That's odd about the Clio substitution, but it's definitely a good thing! I LOVE that Moisture Barrier Cream (and will be doing a review of it in the next month or so). I almost put it in this box, but since it's so rich, I decided to wait and include it in a different box that will be coming out this Fall. And it's a more expensive product than the Vita Sleeping Pack, so it's a good score! 😀

      I can't wait to hear what you think of the Whamisa Toner and the Guerisson 9 cream!

  16. Laura Inger Margrethe Andersen

    It’s actually pretty logical that the cream worked well under makeup, since it has a very high amount of silicone in it. Most western primers are silicone based, since silicone is really good at hiding pores and control sebum. It also makes makeup glide smoothly over the skin 🙂

  17. I was in Tokyo last Friday and saw it at most stores in K-town for about the equivalent of 30 dollars. Ouch!

  18. […] became dry and irritated from some purging last month, I decided to pick up a jar after reading Skin & Tonics’ review. And WOW! The ceramides, niacinamide, and oligopeptides all helped hydrate and heal my skin, vastly […]

  19. Melissa

    Thanks for another review, Kerry. 🙂 Question…in your Mizon gel review you suspected that cyclopentasiloxane was a trigger for your skin. I’m interested in knowing if you’ve noticed this cream giving you any trouble? Thanks!

  20. Jennifer

    I love your site and your reviews. I have changed my entire beauty routine based on your suggestions. My skin looks better than ever!

    This is the first post/review that I have not liked. I actually felt sad when I saw it.
    How awful to take the product of a slaughtered horse and market it with a drawing of a beautiful, alert-looking bridled horse!! I mean awful!!

    I think whenever we “feel guilty” about something, or hesitant to buy it for moral reasons, I think we should listen to that instinct. Better to err on the safe side. It does not make you a hypocrite. Maybe you can’t understand why one thing makes you feel guilty and another thing does not. But at least trust the things you are sensitive about. As Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart once said with respect to hard core porn “I know it when I see it.” He could not define it, but he knew what it was from a deeper instinct.

    Likewise, while maybe you cannot define why this product makes you feel bad, the fact is it does which is enough to inform your decision making.

    I am disappointed to see Skin and Tonics give this product free advertising.

    “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”

    ― Martin Luther King Jr.

  21. Milly

    Amazing review as always! I love reading your reviews as they are always so thorough and informative! This may be a bit off topic, but I recently saw this cleanser on Get It Beauty by Song Jieun – it is the May Coop Cleansing Mousse. I was wondering if you had heard of it or tried it? Ahaha anyway, as I have oily skin I don’t think I’ll try this cream. Thank you! 🙂

  22. Pegs

    Hi, I came across your site while searching for reviews of this product. I bought it for myself, out of curiosity. I’ve read and heard that it helps a lot of people with eczema. My 8mo son has eczema. I’m tempted to apply it on his skin but I don’t know if the ingredients are safe for infant that age. What do you think?

  23. Caye

    Thank you so much for all your posts!!!! Have you ever ordered from
    i just found it and not sure if it is safe to use. Again – THANK you 🙂

  24. sally

    New here,

    I love your writing style, it’s so easy to read. Great job!

    Will keep myself updated 🙂

    Thanks, Sally

  25. Kat

    It’s quite amusing, your reaction to using something with horse oil. I admit that I was also surprised when I heard that horse oil is one of the new ‘it’ skin care ingredients, and your post is one of the first I’d read on the subject, but my surprise and apprehension is from the perspective of someone who’s been brought up eating horse meat. I’d love to learn and ride and even own a horse and that might be a bit disturbing considering I eat horse meat, but my grandmother’s sister sells horse meat at the market and she had explained that the meat usually comes from old horses. In the old times, it was horses injured during war; now, it’s old racehorses. So I guess it’s just like how farmers, who take care of their pet carabaos (water buffalos) and use them for their livelihoods, find it normal to eat carabao beef. But I guess your feeling is that of someone eating dog meat (of which I can relate, ’cause we have dogs at home). Just saying. :-j

  26. ana

    Hi! Do you use this in your morning or night routine? Can you use this together with your retinoid and glycolic acids??????? Thanks.

  27. joanna

    hi! have you tried the other products too? guerisson skin toner, lotion & essence?
    thank you ^^

  28. Carolyn

    I found numerous sources saying the same thing: that the horses are not killed for the oil that would make these products a LOT more expensive), but rather the oil is a by product of the day that is salvaged when these animals are slaughtered for meat. That is strange to us, but I’m okay with that (perhaps influenced by having lived many years in Japan as a kid). It seems better that this animal product is not wasted, anyway…

  29. sera

    I have oily skin so I actually agree at your point stated that it could be too rich to sit on oily skin. BUT!

    I almost finish this product because it did improves my skin texture and overall it smells good. Even my acne scars faded faster than before.

    I might or not repurchase this again because of – horse. Yeah, but it did save my skin’s texture.

  30. thank you for this informative post 🙂 I have one question though, you said that the ingredient list is really beautiful and then rated it 11/20. why? (I’m just curious)

    My Korea Obsession | Korean beauty products’ reviews, beauty tips and DIYs

  31. Asen

    Is it good for stretch marks?

  32. carlos

    I bought horse oil for my shoes and it seemed so soothing that ive been wondering about a cosmetic use…I see I wasnt IM going ot try it.
    All that people crying over horses…cmon….have you top to think vegetables and trees are living matter too? Just because they dont make noise and have hair and eyes like you doesnt mean a thing.
    I think you are streching it a bit by feeling sorry for using any animla fat,since ancient times humans have used animal fat from many different sources for cooking protect their skin and many more uses.
    Crying over a horse is absurd,like I said,you wopuld have to eat stones if you go that route.

  33. Aline

    I used an It’s skin horse fat sheet mask and found it incredibly rich. too rich in fact for my skin. have you tried it?

  34. Shelley

    I know this was written a few years back but it seems the horse oil skincare industry is still going. I appreciate it writing this and I myself could it use it because I have a love for horses and have friends d family that do have companion horses just like I have dogs and I could never use or eat a dogs meat or by products. It bothers me and can’t get past my love of horses to use it for skincare and it will effect my job but I’m ok with the consequences of not being open minded. Thanks for ur article, I needed to read it today.

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