Huxley Secret of Sahara Essence • Essence • Oil • Oil Essence Review & Comparison

September 4, 2019

Hi guys, today I'll be sharing my review + thoughts on all of the essences and oils in Huxley's Secret of Sahara range of products! That's right, the Huxley Essence ; Brightly Ever After, Huxley Essence ; Grab Water, Huxley Oil ; Light And More and the Huxley Oil Essence ; Essence-Like, Oil Like.


Super high key blessed to be able to try out and share all four of these with you guys! I actually already have the Oil Essence but a few months back, a company called Skinx reached out to me and asked if I would be interested in trying all variants of Huxley's Secret of Sahara essence/oil line!


So blessed T.T

Just a disclaimer, when Skinx approached me, all they asked was for an honest review + comparison of Huxley's 4 essences. They did not ask for a positive review at all. So before we get into this review, I'd like to say that although these products were sent to me for review, this post still contains my 100% honest thoughts and opinions on the product (as always).

If you would prefer a video instead of reading, I made a video as well!


Without further ado, let's get on with the review!

WHAT IS IT
So, what are these products? These 4 products are essences, oils and essence-oil hybrids that each cater to a specific need/skin concern. If you look at the product names all jumbled up together you might get a bit confused because each product has a unique name. All you have to know is that there are 2 essences, 1 oil and one essence-oil hybrid.


Huxley's Essence ; Brightly Ever After is a lightweight, milky essence that works to deliver a refined, bright and radiant look + leave the skin hydrated. It helps even skin tone and protects the skin from environmental stress such as pollution.


Huxley's Essence ; Grab Water is a watery-gel essence infused with moisture-binding Prickly Pear Seed Oil & Cactus Extract that soothes and floods skin with hydration while leaving the skin feeling soft, plump and refreshed.


Huxley's Oil ; Light And More is a facial oil that is a highly concentrated yet lightweight blend of anti-oxidant-rich Prickly Pear Seed Oil, Jojoba Oil and Sunflower Oil that melts seamlessly into the skin, providing plumping hydration and firming nutrition to the skin. It is easily absorbed into the skin and leaves a non-greasy finish!


And the most popular one out of all 4 (at least from what I've read online + my own experience with it), Huxley's Oil Essence ; Essence-Like, Oil Like is a unique, non-greasy, lightweight, oil-essence hybrid that combines Prickly Pear Seed Oil with quick-absorbing essence for hydration and nourishment.


So at first glance, here are their differences based on their descriptions:


So depending on your texture preference + concern, you can choose from any one of Huxley's 4 essences/oils. I'll talk more about the textures + how they really feel like after applying below. Read on to find out more!



WHERE TO BUY
Huxley's products are cult-faves and the brand itself has an almost celeb-like reputation in the K-beauty scene, but I think very few shops offer their complete, full range due to their slightly higher price points.

Skinx is the first in-store and online retailer for Huxley in Singapore and they offer free shipping to both Singapore and Malaysia with no minimum purchase. One of the best things about them (for me at least) is that they carry all of Huxley's products!


Their shipping time to Malaysia is:
5-9 Working Days - Free
4-5 Working Days - S$8.40
3-4 Working Days - S$12.70

To be honest I don't mind the 5-9 working day wait, so the fact that they offer free shipping with no minimum orders is amazing! Even must local stores here in Malaysia have a minimum RM99 quota before you are eligible for free shipping.

Skinx has a physical store in Singapore:


And aside from shipping to Singapore & Malaysia, they also ship to Hong Kong, Brunei, Philippines, Thailand & the United States. Free shipping rates vary, and you can check those here. They also ship to other countries, but for that you'll have to contact them at hello@skinx.store for a quote.

In line with their "Dedicated to bringing you everything skin" motto, Skinx carries a lot of highly-raved skincare brands on their site. Not just Korean but international ones like The Ordinary and Paula's Choice as well. I think the curation is quite good and all the products offered are either highly reviewed by bloggers I know or are cult faves.


Here are the prices for the essences I got:

Essence ; Grab Water  • RM177.50 
Oil ; Light And More • RM177.50 


If you're not willing to invest on a full sized bottle yet, you can also give the Essence Deluxe Complete Set a go. I think Skinx is the first retailer I've come across to carry this! I've only ever seen it on Huxley's Instagram and never on shops like Althea, Hermo or Stylekorean.



If you're interested in trying any one of the Huxley products I'm talking about today, you can use the code FISHMEATDIE at checkout on https://skinx.store to get 50% off your second Huxley item! 🎊 The code is valid from now till next Friday, September 13 and can be used for all countries that Skinx shops to  🗺

Did I mention that there's free tracked shipping to SG and MY for all orders as well? 😘

PACKAGING
The essences only took 3 business days to reach me and came nicely packaged in lots of bubble wrap:


The essences + oil themselves come in individual boxes:


If you're familiar with Huxley's products, you'll know that they have a desert theme going on. Similar to their masks/scrubs, the essences + oil come in aesthetic boxes that each have a different image of the desert:


On the back there are English + Korean descriptions:


And each bottle comes with 30ml worth of product.


The bottles themselves come in aesthetic glass bottles that vary in colour and texture. I love how clean and minimalist everything feels.


When you first get the products, it comes with a sticker seal:



INGREDIENTS
After analyzing all 4 products' ingredients, I found that they all contain mostly EWG green-level ingredients with 2-3 yellow ones, meaning these products are highly unlikely to irritate the skin. I think it will be quite long if I attach screenshots of the ingredient analysis in this post, so I'll link to them instead!

One thing I'd like to highlight is that aside from the oil, both essences + the oil essence use Opuntia Ficus-indica Stem Extract (Prickly Pear Seed Extract) as the first ingredient, not water. Ingredients are listed in order of predominance, with the ingredients used in the greatest amount first, followed in descending order by those in smaller amounts.

Prickly Pear Seed Extract has lots of vitamins and antioxidants including:

1. Linoleic acid (a fatty acid that is essential in stimulating healthy cell production and turnover)
2. Vitamin E (which provides protection and helps skin retain moisture)
3. Flavonoids (which are anti-inflammatory)

Prickly Pear Seed Extract is light and provides a huge kick of moisture to skin cells. It's also moisturizing and provides great anti-ageing effects to the skin.


Essence ; Brightly Ever After • Ingredient analysis

This essence is paraben-free, sulfate-free and alcohol-free. It contains brightening ingredients (Glutathione, Niacinamide, Morus Nigra Fruit Extract & Alpha-Bisabolol), anti-ageing ingredients (Niacinamide, Citric Acid & Vitamin E) as well as ingredients that promote wound healing (Alpha-Bisabolol). It also contains Butylene Glycol + Glycerin which help hydrate the skin.



Essence ; Grab Water Ingredient analysis

This essence is paraben-free, sulfate-free and EU allergen-free. It contains anti-ageing ingredients (Ceramide 3) and ingredients that promote wound healing (Sodium Hyaluronate). It also contains ingredients that are great for hydrating dry skin (Butylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate & Glycerin), but it does contain alcohol which may be irritating to those with sensitive skin.



Oil ; Light And More Ingredient analysis

This oil is paraben-free, sulfate-free, alcohol-free, silicone-free, EU allergen-free and has minimal ingredients! It contains Vitamin E for anti-ageing, Sunflower Seed Oil + Jojoba Oil (which act as emollients) and of course, Prickly Pear Seed Oil which acts as an anti-oxidant.



Oil Essence ; Essence-Like, Oil LikeIngredient analysis

This oil essence is paraben-free, sulfate-free, EU allergen-free and fungal acne safe. The main ingredients are Yerba Mate Leaf, Acai Berry, Camu Camu and Quinoa which all act as anti-oxidants. It contains Butylene Glycol and Glycerin as well to hydrate the skin.


TEXTURE & FRAGRANCE
All 4 products each have a different texture, and I think the variation of textures and finishes is great for those looking for products to use during the day/night/etc.


The Essence ; Brightly Ever After is white in colour and has a milky texture. After applying it it leaves a natural shine (not too greasy but not matte as well). You can feel a thin layer on the skin like how lotion feels on your arms/legs after applying, but the finish is not sticky at all and feels lightweight on the skin. You can smell Huxley's signature scent but it barely there and I could barely detect it.


The Essence ; Grab Water is transparent in colour and has a runny, almost watery texture. It absorbs very quickly into the skin and leaves the skin with a surprisingly soft and matte finish. Although it's matte, it doesn't feel dry at all! My skin actually feels very hydrated and plump but it leaves no shine at all. It also feels quite cooling and refreshing while you apply it (though that sensation fades once it's fully absorbed). It has very little to no scent.


The Oil ; Light And More smells the most like Huxley's signature scent. It's not a heavy scent that lingers: it fades away once it's absorbed. Compared to the others, however, it has the most powerful scent. It is transparent in colour and feels hydrating to the touch. Once patted in, it leaves the skin feeling soft. It's quite lightweight on the skin, and if not overdone, leaves an almost matte finish with just the slightest hint of a glow once absorbed.


The Oil Essence ; Essence-Like, Oil Like is milky white in colour and is more viscous than the Water Grab essence but slightly lighter than the Brightly Ever After essence. The scent smells is slightly lighter than usual Huxley scent and disappears after absorbed. It feels quite plumping and leaves a natural dewy finish.


All 4 products feel quite lightweight, but if you compare them to each other, you can feel the differences in terms of finish and texture. If you have oily skin like me, all 4 products feel like they provide ampoule/more than enough moisture. If you are someone with a drier skin type, I think you might prefer something heavier/top this up with a heavier cream.


Here's my simple ranking of the textures from most to least:

Moisture:
Brightly Ever After - Essence-like Oil-like/Grab Water - Light and More 
(Essence-like Oil-like/Grab Water is tied but provide different finish)

Scent:
Light and More - Essence-like Oil-like - Brightly Ever After - Water Grab

Thickness:
Brightly Ever After - Essence-like Oil-like - Water Grab - Light and More
(but all of them are quite lightweight and feel lightweight)

Shine:
Brightly Ever After/Essence-like Oil-like (natural glow) - Light and More (little glow) - Water Grab (matte)


HOW TO USE
For the essences + oil essence, I actually use them like how I would my serums. After toning, I drop 2-3 drops of the product on the back of my hand and distribute it on my cheeks, forehead, nose and chin. I then spread it onto my face and pat it in till it's fully absorbed. As with all skincare, you can use this before your makeup base/foundation as a prep, but I especially think Essence-like Oil-like and Brightly Ever After would make a great makeup base.

For the oil, I use it like how I use my L'Occitane Divine Youth Oil. I warm 2-3 drops of the oil on my palms + pat it gently into my skin. I learned that this is the correct way to apply it compared to directly dropping it onto your face and rubbing it in. You can mix it in with your moisturizer for added anti-oxidant benefits or even apply it on your lips before applying lipstick.


MY REVIEW & VERDICT
I quite like using all of these products and I interchange them based on my mood/skin condition. Off the bat I want to say that they're not the most affordable essences/oil/serums in the market, but I would say they're quite worth it. For the price, you get a hypoallergenic & dermatologically tested product with clean ingredients that are very unlikely to cause any irritation. I did not get any irritation/breakouts while using these products as well. I wouldn't categorize Huxley as a luxury brand, but I would that it falls under the prestige category. The packaging and branding that comes with the product is amazing as well.


With all that said, what do I think about each individual product? Are they all worth it?


Like it promises, Huxley's Essence ; Brightly Ever After is super lightweight despite its milky texture. Compared to other emulsions/milky products I tried out, this ranks number 1 because of its comfortable, non-sticky finish and moisturizing properties.

Unlike Huxley's Glow and Brightness sheet mask, this did not give any immediate brightening effects. However, I did realize that my skin tone looked quite even and smooth. I did not see any change in my skin tone not do I feel like I looked brighter, but I did find that my skin tone looked quite even and that my skin overall looked very healthy.

 In terms of moisture, I found it to be the most moisturizing out of all 4 and I loved how moisturized my skin felt after using it. I would say it's a pretty good product that I would not mind using regularly, both day and night.


The watery-gel texture of Huxley's Essence ; Grab Water is great for days when you want to feel cool or if the weather is hot. Its like a drink of water for your skin, leaving it soft, plump and refreshed. Although I found it hydrating + absorbs quickly into the skin, I find that its a tad less moisturizing and hydrating than the Brightly Ever After. I found this quite weird because this is supposed to be the one that focuses on moisture. Don't get me wrong, it is moisturizing, but I just feel like the Brightly Ever After is ever more so.


One thing I can say I like about this is the ultra-lightness of the texture/finish and the matte finish! Its great for the day time and I would highly recommend it to someone who has an oily skin type who does not want to use anything even remotely heavy. It feels super airy and is perfect for hot countries like Malaysia


The only other face oil I've used is L'Occitane's Divine Youth Oil, and compared to that, Huxley's Oil ; Light And More is not as heavy. Huxley's Oil ; Light does melt seamlessly into the skin, plumping it and leaving it hydrated. I wouldn't say that my skin felt any firmer than usual, but it did feel super soft and smooth.

The non-greasy and minimal shine finish is quite good, and I find that it does help products sink in better into my skin like the L'Occitane oil too. The only real difference I can tell from both is that the feeling of nourished skin last longer with L'Occitane and L'Occitane's scent is thicker to the touch. Both feel lightweight but I think I prefer L'Occitane for the night and Huxley for the day. In terms of price, you get twice the amount for way less with Huxley compared to L'Occiatane, so I think this is a good/more affordable dupe for me when I run out of it.


Last but not least, Huxley's Oil Essence ; Essence-Like. The unique texture is really nice and I love how super moisturized and nourished my skin feels like after using it. It does a great job of making my skin look alive despite my late nights and makes my skin look so much finer and smoother to the touch. For what it does I would expect it to be either sticky or shiny like my other anti-ageing/anti-oxidizing serums, but it's actually very lightweight and offers very minimal glow. The shine is there but it's not like other serums where it's a full brown shine. It's a non-sticky glow that looks natural and feels super comfortable.

I've been using this the longest and I can tell you right now that it's a great investment. It's not going to visible help with acne or black/whiteheads, but it does really help in the moisturizing department. I feel like its also great at anti-ageing as it gives your skin a lot of good/clean ingredients. To be honest the only bad thing I can say about this product is that it tends to sell out in most stores and it's quite hard to get a hold of haha.


WILL I REPURCHASE?
The ranking of how I like these products are Oil Essence ; Essence-Like > Brightly Ever After  > Oil ; Light And More > Grab Water.

I would say that I would repurchase all of of these products except for the Grab Water. I was just a bit underwhelmed by it. It's a great product that moisturizes and leaves a matte finish, but I don't see myself investing in it. You can get other more moisturizing products if you're looking for a product that is supposed to be highly moisturizing for a similar/lower price.


For the Oil Essence ; Essence-Like, I already have backups hahaha. I was already using one + had a backup in my skincare stash when Skinx sent me this set, so now I have 3 bottles haha. I really like it and I think I'll continue to buy it. If you're looking for a product that will help maintain your skin and give you some anti-ageing benefits, I would go for this one.

For the Brightly Ever After, I would not mind repurchasing it again! I feel like the moisturizing properties are quite good and it's good at evening out my skin tone as well. If you're looking for something that will help with your overall skin tone + give your skin that healthy look, I recommend going for this.

For the Light and More, I think I'll repurchase it. It's a cheaper alternative to my L'Occitane oil that does a similar if not identical job. If I'm being really nitpicky I still like the L'Occitane more compared to Light and More because it feels better, but Light and More is quite good as well. I would recommend this if you're looking for a good face oil that gives your skin anti-ageing benefits, helps other products sink into the skin and feels lightweight on the face.



And that's it for my review and comparison of all of Huxley's essences/oils/oil essences! I hope my post helped show you guys the main differences of each product + helped you decide which one you want to try ^^

All these products are available on Skinx, and you can click here to check them out.

Essence ; Grab Water  • RM177.50 
Oil ; Light And More • RM177.50 


If you're interested in trying any one of the Huxley products I mentioned (or even the Deluxe set!), you can use the code FISHMEATDIE at checkout on https://skinx.store to get 50% off your second Huxley item! 🎊 The code is valid from now till next Friday, September 13 and can be used for all countries that Skinx shops to  🗺 There's also free tracked shipping to SG and MY for all orders as well!


Thanks for dropping by my blog, see you in my next post!

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