I first discovered Missha in college. I had fallen into an Amazon black hole and tumbled headfirst into Korean skincare. This was 2012, so I was ahead of the game. In an attempt to cover rather than heal my horrendous acne, I tried their BB cream, which I still love today.
But today is about a lesser-known product, essence. Specifically, Time Revolution: The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist. An intense name for an intense product.
For those of you who don’t know, essence is a pre-moisturizer step to boost your skin’s hydration. You soak a cotton pad in it and press it into your face. Missha’s is touted as a much more affordable, and some say, more effective version of SK-II’s cult product, Facial Treatment Essence.
Missha’s essence is made with 90% fermented yeast, which ensures that your skin will retain moisture. It also contains niacinamide and Vitamin B3 for brightening, and purple barley, a moisturizing antioxidant.
In a study of 21 women, ages 20 to 55, in a comparison of both the 2nd and 3rd generations of FTE after 2 weeks of use, the results were overwhelmingly positive. Subjects saw a 142% improvement in hydration, 199% improvement in texture, and 182% improvement in tone.
At $49 for a 150ml, the bottle will last you at least a few months. I’ve seen single-use sheet masks that cost more! Missha’s products are also cruelty-free and never tested on any animals, so you can feel doubly good about giving them your business.
In the almost month I’ve been using the essence, my skin has finally overcome the dry California air, and looks brighter and healthier. I’m finally feeling confident enough to put my foundation away again, and let my skin see the light of day – with SPF, of course.