You may know the brand Asian Secrets by its recent commercial featuring Solenn Heussaff (a local celebrity who I greatly dislike, hehe). Their Indonesian ritual body scrubs (lulurs) first appeared in stores some two years ago— A whitening, exfoliating scrub, lightly scented with jasmine and some green tea extract, these lurlurs were originally part of the preparations for weddings. That “original” scent/variation doesn’t seem to be available anymore since they introduced three new variants plus two kinds of soap. I really liked that original product, so I’ve been waiting for it to pop up again (but it really doesn’t seem like that’s going to happen) so I’ve been without a body exfoliant for a while now. Luckily, a few weeks back I decided to enter a small raffle on a blog that I visit regularly, and this…
… is my prize! I was expecting a few samples. Maybe one of each product or even less, perhaps a scrub and several soaps. Instead, I got a ton of stuff! Yay! Click more to read a little about the products and the local beauty blog that I visit regularly. :)
I got EIGHT soaps and SIX lurlurs. Isn’t that crazy? I didn’t keep them all to myself for two reasons: (1) I would have felt slightly greedy and (2) these are whitening products, and I’m not looking for whitening products. I kept four soaps and two lurlurs. The rest went to my yayas, who already use this product.
The two soap variants: Bengkoang + Betel Extract and Bengkoang + Olive Oil
Bengkoang = Yam Bean Extract, which is the main whitening ingredient in the soap. I’ve been testing out the Olive Oil variant since I have dry skin and that’s supposed to be the moisturizing one. My first impression was that it wasn’t very moisturizing at all… you know that taut feeling you get when your skin isn’t moist enough? I felt that after using this soap. Of course that is easily remedied by applying lotion, but I’m used to my oh-so soft and moisturizing Olay soap, which is like a cream bar (the imported version only). There are good things about this soap, though. The smell is really pleasant, it comes packaged in a plastic inside the box, and it has a really cute shape. Check it out:
The shape really helps you hold on to the bar better, which I like. There are also tiny beads embedded in the soap, so it does exfoliate lightly. I give this soap a grade of C+ at best, because it’s also not exactly cheap. I remember seeing it labeled at approximately 115php? That’s steep! HOWEVER (and this is surprising to me), it may ACTUALLY be working in the WHITENING department! Which, again, is something I am not looking for, but others might find irresistible. I personally can’t forgive the drying effect, but hey, I’ve got them so I’ll use them up! :)
The three scrubs: Seaweed and Vitamin E, Licorice and Mulberry Leaf Extract, and Green Tea and Vitamin E
These, I like. I’m currently using the Seaweed and Vitamin E one, and while it’s not as good as the original (this is slightly more watery?), it does the job and it’s mild. This gets a B and I would recommend it. :) I imagine that using the soap and scrub in tandem really will help lighten skin tone over time, plus it is really healthy to exfoliate once a week.
I won these from a sponsored contest on Project Vanity, a local beauty blog run by Liz Lanuzo. It’s probably one of the best local beauty blogs and it’s a good place to go for reviews by an Asian and to find product prices in Pesos. This isn’t the first raffle/contest I’ve won on the internet… I’ve actually won a Samsung Corby and an iPad. I get my luck from my mom (as if luck is hereditary, haha), who wins things at raffles regularly. I think the biggest thing she’s won is an entire kitchen set—cabinets, fixtures, and all. She always jokes that she’s still waiting for her Mercedes Benz to come in one day. With her luck, I wouldn’t be too surprised if it actually happens. So the lesson here, if there is any at all, is to always enter raffles. If you lose, you lose. If you win, you WIN something FREE (ish) and that’s never really a bad thing. :)
*Asian Secrets products are available at Watsons, SM Beauty, and all major supermarket beauty aisles.