Hi, I'm an intern at Dr. Althea's Seoul branch. I started as a skin-care amateur - until I started to work for Dr.Althea. Well, I'm still not exactly a professional in skincare, I barely know how to take care of my skin. And I have trouble with finding makeup that I like and know how to use (properly). My skin is sensitive/combination, and I get the occasional breakout - hormonal or normal. I have some pink/brown acne scars, freckles, and blackheads/whiteheads. Before moving to Seoul, I rarely wore foundation - I found a lot of the ones that claimed to be dewy would NOT be dewy, looked cakey, or broke me out. I wanted to find a foundation that made me feel like it was still my skin but just a bit better and I couldn’t. Well, I also just didn’t try that hard because I have quite the lazy girl approach to beauty. I was using NARS sheer glow foundation then Shiseido’s Synchro Skin Glow Luminizing Fluid Foundation - both very solid foundations but they weren’t quite right for my sensitive skin. They broke me out a little bit and looked a bit dry and cakey at the end of the day.
When I came to Seoul and finally ran out of the foundation, I decided I’d try cushions for the first time, I tried MISSHA’s signature cover cushion, then Dr.Jart’s BB cream - also not bad but I found the shade to be too pink for my neutral skin tone. The foundation also started to separate near the end of the day making it obvious I was wearing makeup. As I slowly ran out of my Korean foundations, Dr.Althea’s Double Serum Balm Foundation came out, and I got to try one. I use the shade 23 - a neutral beige, comparable to NARS Santa Fe shade. I was a bit skeptical about Korean cushions at this point - but upon applying my first thought was “wow this is cold.”
I liked it, it has a cooling effect, it’s lightweight, and sheer. It was moisturizing as it promised and brightening. After applying the first layer I was impressed by how natural it looked. But, what mattered to me is that it could cover my scars naturally. It promised to be buildable so I patted on some more - it didn’t completely cover the scars but it had almost blurred it so it wasn’t noticeable at all. My skin looked like there was no makeup on it, it was like my skin was naturally bright and radiant. Furthermore, my skin still looked great even after a long day. After that, there was no going back. I’ve been using it for two months now, I just switched my finished foundation to the refill it came with and I’m certain I will be repurchasing this.
The number one reason I love it is that it doesn’t feel like I’m wearing any makeup at all, it’s exactly what I look for in a foundation. I’ve received so many compliments on my skin - my friends from home think it’s because of the food in Korea or a phone filter. But it’s none of that - it’s this foundation.
The best thing about this foundation is that I’ve noticed my skin looks healthier. I had relatively flaky skin in certain areas of my face. After a month of using this dry skin, flakes disappeared. Even on the days where I might be too lazy to do my full skincare routine - cover your eyes as I am about to tell you what those days look like …. micellar water, maybe moisturizer or sometimes just the toner… Sorry for the skincare junkies out there. Luckily when I skip moisturizer (the balm foundation is moisturizing to help my skin out on those days).
Furthermore, my skin doesn’t seem as reactive as it once was when I pulled days like those. The serum in the double balm foundation is formulated to strengthen sensitive skin, especially the ones with weakened skin barriers. I must say I’ve been converted and has been my makeup/ skincare secret for the past two months. It gives me this honey skin effect, I top it off with a highlighter (vaseline lip balm) for a ‘glass’ skin look. I’ve yet to put powder over it but it lasts pretty much all day for me (8 - 10 hours). If it’s hot and humid out (as it can be in Seoul during the summertime) I may have to reapply where I was sweating. I still break out and I can happily say I don't mind applying the balm foundation over breakouts (when I have to) - I find it doesn’t do much visible damage and often helps the healing process. Although I wouldn’t say it is more helpful than just going barefaced.
I can confidently say that this is the hidden gem balm foundation that you’re looking for. It’s incredible - and it’s the reason my skin is glowing with or without it.
It’s currently only available on this side of the world - but word on the street is it’ll be available on our site and Amazon soon as well. Lazy girls on the other side of the world rejoice!