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MISSHA was amongst the first brands to hit U.S. shores: In 2014, it was named a Soko Glam Best of K-Beauty Award winner. And for the past three years or so, its popularity hasn’t slowed down. With an unprecedented 80% Fermented Yeast Concentrate (Saccharomyces ferment filtrate), and a high concentration (I estimate 3-4%) of niacinamide, this essence promises to improve skin elasticity, enhance skin barrier function, and revive skin tone and texture for an overall bright and clear tone.
Here are my honest thoughts:
First Off, What is a Skin Care Essence?
A skin care essence is a hydrating pre-serum for the skin. Generally containing mild to moderate concentrations of exfoliants like alpha hydroxy acids, a skin care essence is designed to prime and exfoliate the skin. This means other skin care ingredients can penetrate the skin more deeply. In general, a skin care essence feels like water. I like to think of a skin care essence like a new age toner: Meant to stay on the skin for longer-lasting benefits, and infused with more beneficial, modern ingredients like AHAs, sodium hyaluronate, and probiotics.
Next: Probiotics are Best for those with Dry or Irritated Skin
With probiotic skin care, scientists have identified a few strains of bacteria (including Saccharomyces) that are able to improve the appearance of the skin by essentially strengthening it, a term in dermatology known as “improved barrier function” (Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 2011). Unfortunately, this technology is rather new, so the number of independent, peer-reviewed studies not affiliated with any company are still limited. But the technology is promising for those with certain skin conditions associated with lessened barrier function.
Probiotic skin care is most likely best for those with very dry or irritated skin. I personally would recommend probiotic skin care to those with very dry skin, and/or eczema/atopic dermatitis who have tried many treatment options on the market without success previously. There is a study, though just one at this time, that suggests probiotic strains used in probiotic skin care improves barrier functions and symptoms of atopic dermatitis (Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 2011).
Further, eczema is well-documented to be an autoimmune condition (Journal of Immunology, 2007). This essentially means that the skin is attacking itself for some unknown reason, resulting in the severe dryness and red patches associated with eczema. I believe it is possible that the immune system can be bolstered not only with vitamin and mineral supplementation, but perhaps also by reintroducing controlled strains of “good,” healthy bacteria back into the skin. If this is true, then probiotic skin care may be a godsend for those with eczema, as well as other autoimmune conditions.
Niacinamide Brightens, Softens Skin, Reduces the Appearance of Wrinkles
Niacinamide is an amazing ingredient. Niacinamide has been shown in studies to be a superior hydrator (with results similar to hyaluronic acid) and hyperpigmentation treatment (with results similar to 2% hydroquinone). It is also a fair treatment for acne and fine lines and wrinkles, although I say “fair” because the results are not, say, 10% salicylic acid + 2% benzoyl peroxide, or 0.1% retinol, respectively.
A published study in the International Journal of Dermatology found that 2% niacinamide was more effective than petrolatum (Vaseline, or a purified mixture of hydrocarbons from petroleum/crude oil) in reducing water loss from skin and increasing its moisture levels. This is extremely telling, as Dr. Leslie Baumann, director of Cosmetic Dermatology at the University of Miami, states in her textbook Cosmetic Dermatology that “petrolatum is one of the most occlusive moisturizing ingredients known…it is often the gold standard to which other occlusive ingredients are compared.” Due to the non-comedogenic nature of petrolatum, it has been popular in skincare formulations since 1872. Yet niacinamide is also non-comedogenic, and it does not have the greasy texture of petrolatum, making MISSHA Time Revolution First Treatment Essence even better for those with dry or irritated skin.
If you have dry, easily irritated skin, then MISSHA Time Revolution First Treatment Essence is a great product for you. With two hard-to-find technologies — over 80% probiotics plus about 3-4% niacinamide — this is a tremendous product for dry skin sufferers who have tried just about everything else. That said, I would avoid if you have oily skin.
Ingredients in MISSHA Time Revolution First Treatment Essence
Saccharomyces ferment Filtrate, Bigida Ferment Lysate, Propanediol, Niacinamide, Polyquaternium -51, Ulmus Davidiana Root Extract, Betaine, Amaranthus Caudatus Seed Extract, Pirper Methysticum Leaf/Root/Stem Extract, Beta vulgaris (Beet) Root extract, Phellodendron Amurense Bark Extract, Cassia Alata Leaf Extract, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Pentylene Glycol, Water, Trehalose, Disodium EDTA, Hydrolyzed Corn Starch, Adenosine, Ethylhexylglycerin, Butylene Glycol, Clycerin, Raffinose, Tromethamine, Acetic Acid, Lactic Acid, 1, 2 – Hexanediol, Caprytyl Glycol, Hexapeptide – 9 Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate.