Since the journey with Decorté, I’ve started to dabble into other luxury skincare and one of them is The History of WHOO. It’s highly recommended by my friend so I wanted to try it out myself too.
Being a skincare junkie myself, aside from the importance and benefit of skincare, I’m also a victim of beautiful and limited edition packaging. You can see from my previous post where I’ve started my journey with The History of WHOO by getting their cosmetic products first only slowly transition into their skincare.
So one must start to try WHOO’s most iconic range BICHUP that’s famously known for its anti-aging benefit and properties. In this line, they have 3 main products Bichup First Care Moisture Anti-Aging Essence, Bichup Self Generating Anti-Aging Essence, and Bichup Ja Yoon Cream, or what they called as Bichup 3-Step Range but I prefer to name them as the Holy Trinity.
Since I’ve started to review the product in more in-depth, I’ve decided to write on their first care first.
Coming back to this essence it’s similar to pre-serum/first care especially my highly acclaimed holy grail, Decorté Moisture Liposome. Although they’re quite similar in terms of the application what they deliver is different. What WHOO claimed that the main function of this first care is to improve skin metabolism and blood circulation. Upon hearing this. I’m intrigued by how skincare able to do such a thing which usually we get from our diet or supplement intake.
✵✵ Product ✵✵
The product comes in 85ml but annually they launched a limited edition 130ml that comes in a royal white porcelain bottle. What I’ve gotten mine is their 2019 Royal Edition that consist of the following products:-
- Bichup First Care Moisture Anti-Aging Essence 130ml
- Gongjinhyang Soo Soo Yeon Balancer 20ml
- Gongjinhyang Soo Soo Yeon Lotion 20ml
- Gongjinhyang Soo Soo Yeon Hydrating Overnight Mask 13ml
- Gongjinhyang Mi Liquid Lip Rouge Mini #12 Pink 3g
You can see how not to fall in love with their packaging. Especially this year it’s in colorful pastel with embossed peony, chrysanthemum, lotus, and butterfly. All these symbolized wealth, luxe, purity, and noble beauty which in line with their status as luxury skincare. Bottle design inspired by a Korean national treasure gourd-shaped bottle. They started launching limited edition for First Care in 2014 until the recent 2020 which was all in monotone or few-tone except 2019 was all colorful.
But do expect the limited edition to be quite heavy thus not travel-friendly due to the porcelain material but surely you won’t mind it as it feels so luxe by just having this on your vanity table.
The texture is lightweight and it’s in translucent golden copper color there are white micro-capsules in the essence itself. The scent is surprisingly nice despite being medicinally focused skincare, the herbal scent is soothing for me.
Similar to Sulwhasoo where you need to activate the heat on both palms by rubbing then applied it by pressing onto your skin for seamless and immediate absorption.
✵✵ Notable Ingredients ✵✵
Including their most iconic secret formula known as Gongjinbidan that was used across their skincare range. It’s mainly made from Deer Antlers, Angelica Root, Japanese Cornelian Cherries, and Wild Thyme. You may refer to this post for further detail on Gongjinbidan.
Combining Haeulhwan another secret formulation that consists of Chinese Magnolia, Pine Trees, Ginger, and Wolfberry. These key ingredients are encapsulated in micro-beads and can penetrate deeply into our skin thus able to soothe and improve the qi (blood circulation) for skin detoxification, while reducing water retention (face swelling) at the same time, enhancing skin’s radiance.
Schizandra Chinensis Fruit Extract AKA Chinese Magnolia is one of the best antioxidants. Similarly well-know antioxidant bearer Lycium Chinense Fruit Extract AKA Goji Berries/Wolfberry also has anti-inflammatory function while Zingiber Officinale Root Extract AKA Ginger has additional skin-soothing properties.
Pinus Densiflora Leaf Extract AKA Pine Needle is a good antimicrobial agent as well as an antioxidant too.
2. MEDICINAL HERB EXTRACT AND GINSENG
Angelica Gigas Root Extract AKA Korean Angelica is a great skin-conditioning
Poria Cocos Extract is from a type of mushroom that has antioxidant and skin-soothing properties.
Populus Nigra Bark/Bud/Leaf/Twig Extract AKA Black Poplar a type of tree has anti-aging properties as well as antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
Rhus Semialata Gall Extract AKA Nutgall Tree is an anti-aging agent that helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles and also has skin conditioning ability
Salvia Miltiorrhiza Root Extract AKA Red Sage. This ingredient is meant to provide relief to reactive, sensitive skin. It can aid in limiting hyper-reactivity of the skin’s sensory nerve, restoring skin barrier; and controlling inflammation.
Arbutin is a Glycoside extracted from the Bearberry plant that is a very effective antioxidant and skin-brightening by inhibiting tyrosinase thus prevents the formation of melanin that causes pigmentation that leads to dark spot emergence.
3. AMINO ACIDS AND VITAMIN B
Finally, with a very long list of different types of essential Amino Acids (> 10 types) that are responsible for enhancing skin texture, strength, and resilience as well as to maintain skin’s hydration providing an overall supple, healthy appearance.
And a handful types of Vitamin B (< 10 types). Vitamin B is an antioxidant that helps to treat signs of aging and alleviate sensitive skin.
I’m not sure why they put Chromium Hydroxide Green which is a colorant but to serve what purpose? And this has been critically claimed to be toxic but not harmful enough to us depending on the usage amount.
✵✵ Result ✵✵
I’ve been replacing this first essence since I stop using Decorté Moisture Liposome in late Feb/Mar up till now. Some of you might get shocked why I stopped using Decorté since it’s my holy grail. You need to wait for my Skincare Regime Series 3 to know why.
So for me, this has been my staple first care. The result is quite amazing too as it was able to soothe my skin especially when I’m having a breakout. (I’ve started a series of a breakout after stopped using Decorté as my main skincare regime). It was able to reduce my skin inflammation by improving the blood circulation on my skin and also provide a sheen of radiance.
The only difference this and Decorté Moisture Liposome is it doesn’t retain moisture as good as Decorté but I like how it can reduce skin inflammatory cause by a breakout.
Another thing I did notice that although it’s in anti-aging range and it has only a handful of ingredients specially targeted at anti-aging but the anti-aging function is not significant as mostly the key ingredients targeted at skin conditioning, soothing and anti-inflammatory. Even though it has numerous antioxidant ingredients, and depending on the types of antioxidants, merely relying on antioxidants is not enough for the anti-aging regime.
I believe you need to use their complete range or up till their Bichup Self Generating Anti-Aging Essence, their signature serum to feel the anti-aging benefit. This serum is the main highlight in fighting anti-aging which I will cover on the future post.
✵✵ Overall Rating ✵✵
Overall I enjoyed using this product as these medicinal ingredients extracted able to improve skin metabolism and blood circulation while also retaining moisture.
So will I continue to purchase it, YES for the time being as it does and deliver what it says. I did saw some review mentioned that this first care doesn’t help in anti-aging but again based on what they advocate is not really on anti-aging. This is just the first step to prepare you for the anti-aging process reap from using Bichup Self Generating Anti-Aging Essence.
Another reason would be pricing, it’s cheaper as compared with 1 bottle 85ml limited edition Moisture Liposome can get you 2 bottles of WHOO 85ml equivalent to 170ml.
*I’m an Asian guy with an oily combination skin condition in my early 30s and living a tropical climate with hot and humid weather.
**Reviews are based on my own experience usage, research online and knowledge shared between beauty advisors.
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