iUnik | Natural & Unique Korean Skincare*
Except for my oil cleanser from The Face Shop (review) and my dabble into Dr. Jart+ and Erborian (review), I haven’t really gotten around to try out more K-Beauty stuff. One of the reasons is that I find most of the Korean skincare to use a lot of fragrant oils, perfume, and extracts that might not be the best suited for sensitive skin (or any skin!), even though they claim to be. While I love that most K-Beauty products use a lot of natural ingredients, it’s still hard to find products that tick all of my boxes.
So when I was approached by the Korean skincare brand iUnik, to pick out two products to try out for the blog, I got a bit hesitant at first. But after having a look at their products I quickly turned excited!
iUnik is a relatively new brand on the market, came about 2016. They strive to deliver products at reasonable prices with made with natural and mild ingredients with a low EWG score. Now, I personally don’t think EWG is a 100% reliable source, a good guideline at best… But in this case, I think iUnik assembled some really good formulas that are worth a mention on this blog and that I think you guys would find interesting!
I had a hard time choosing between the nine products they offer at the moment, but I went with the Tea Tree Relief Serum as my skin was breaking out badly at the time. The formula really spoke to me as it also contains Centella Asiatica water and extract, which I’ve heard many great things about. For my second pick, I went with the Vitamin Hyaluronic Acid Vitalizing Toner to help combat any dehydration my skin was suffering from.
iUNIK | Tea Tree Relief Serum*
This tea tree serum contains 67% tea tree water and 19.5% Centella Asiatica (also known as Gotu Kola) leaf water, and a concoction of green superfoods – which reminded me much of the Sukin Chia Seed Oil (review). So I knew my skin would feel familiar with some of the ingredients.
Despite it being mostly made up of tea tree water, it does not have much of a fragrance. It says on the website that it has “soft natural perfume”, but in fact, this serum (and the toner) is completely scentless. It baffles me, as even fragrance-free products tend to have some smell about them? Not complaining, I seriously think it’s great!
Can be used both morning and evening.
The texture is slightly gel-like and feels very soothing and hydrating. Unless I’m using something even thinner, like a vitamin C serum, I usually go with this as my first step after cleansing and toning. I apply it straight to my face and then pat it in. Generally, use about 5-6 drops for my whole face and neck. It sinks nicely into the skin and doesn’t leave a sticky surface.
The tea tree serum can be layered with other serums/essence/toners without a problem.
It won’t give any instant effect after the first use, but within a few weeks, you may find your skin feeling soothed, calmer and experience fewer breakouts. At least, that’s what I noticed with my skin ever since I added this serum to my routine!
It didn’t cure my breakouts completely, but I consider this serum to have been a milestone in calming down the inflammation that was happening under my jawline at the time.
Other than the soothing effects, I’ve been really enjoying this serum for its hydration. Nowadays I reach for it when I feel like my skin needs something calming, hydrating and balancing. It’s similar to my ACO Protect & Restore serum that has now been discontinued, but with an all natural ingredient list and a liquid consistency. But either way, you get quite a generous amount of 50ml for the price, and the bottle is beautifully minimalistic.
Generally speaking, though it says it’s for oily to sensitive skin, I personally think this serum suits all skin types who suffer from mild acne or sensitive skin. It’s light enough for oily skin but has a hydrating punch to accommodate drier skin types. And it’s the only serum from iUnik that offer such a high content of Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola), both leaf water and the extract. Give this a try if you are interested in this ingredient and are looking for a soothing serum!
iUnik offers a trial sample set on three of their other serums which you can try before you buy the full size. I believe it’s free shipping on them too! I got one of each, and one little sample is about 1-2 uses. In the trial set you get 10, which will last you about a week, which is fair enough.
Here is my initial thought when trying them:
Rose Galactomyces Synergy Serum: Had the lightest texture, closer to water. Felt hydrating and sunk right in. Smelled faintly of rose. Suits all skin types, but may be best suited for normal to oily. Formulated with 10% rose water and 50% galactomyses – a kind of yeast from rice wine ferment, which helps with oil control and skin firming.
Black Snail Restore Serum: Felt very hydrating but uncomfortable sticky on my skin. No scent. It says all skin types, but I can see this best suited for dry skin. Or alternatively only used at nighttime. Contains black snail secretion, centella asiatica leaf water, ferment extracts, and a mix of black superfoods. Used for anti-aging and skin firmness.
Propolis Vitamin Synergy Serum: Thickest viscosity of all the serums, but doesn’t feel as sticky after massaging it in as the black snail serum. Leaves your face looking bright and dewy and feeling very soft. Smells of something, but very faint. Suited for normal to dry skin types. Has a unique ratio of 70% Propolis and 12% Seabuckthorn fruit extract, formulated with pomegranate, mulberry, fig and ginkgo extract. Does, however, contain Bergamot fruit oil.
iUnik has a fifth serum that I didn’t get to try, which consists of just 100% pure Beta Glucan. From the description, Beta Glucan is really good for anyone who has very dry or dehydrated skin with compromised skin barrier. It’s said to have 20% better moisture storage than hyaluronic acid. And according to Paula’s Choice, it is considered an excellent ingredient for improving the look of redness and other signs of sensitive skin. You’ll find this ingredient in iUnik’s Tea Tree Relief Serum and Beta Glucan Daily Moisture Cream. One of my friends recently tried something like this hemp face and neck serum, and would recommend more like this if you wanted to try other natural skincare products!
iUnik offers two toners, a rosewater toner for oilier skin types and this hyaluronic acid toner for drier skin.
I went with the hyaluronic acid vitalizing toner because my skin does have a tendency for dehydration, and from experience, hyaluronic acid has been really good at balancing my skin; from what I’ve learned with my skin, hydration = less inflammation and breakouts. The rose toner contains rose essential oil which is on my avoid-list, but I’m not afraid to make exceptions.
Half of this toner is made up of an impressive 45% small molecular sodium hyaluronate and 5% Seabuckthorn fruit extract, to really hydrate, nourish and help even out the skin tone. It also contains niacinamide, rooibos and licorice extract.
Used both morning and evening.
The hyaluronic vitalizing toner has a gel-like texture and feels very hydrating without feeling sticky on the skin once it’s sunken in. Applied either patted in with your hands or used with a cotton pad.
There’s really nothing bad to say about this toner, it all comes down to personal preference of consistency. While I found the toner to be hydrating and soothing without making my skin feel sticky, I never really grew to like the gel-like texture. I personally just prefer my toners to be as liquid as possible to avoid the feeling of too much layering. Fortunately, my skin never seemed to breakout or get clogged, even though it sometimes felt like that was too much moisture.
I’ve tried milkier types of toners in the past, like the PC’s Resist Replenishing Toner, which I did like but almost felt like it was replacing my moisturizer. I will perhaps make more use of this toner now during winter, but right now I can’t help to regret that I didn’t go with the Rose toner! haha
Nevertheless, it’s a great toner for anyone who deals with dry and rough skin. It’s almost more like a light serum than a toner. I can definitely see this being used as a boost of moisture and nourishment for dry and sensitive skin and worth taking a look at!
Together, the serum and toner give you a hydrated, soft and plump skin. I’ve been enjoying the serum the most and would definitely repurchase. You get such a great value for your money, as 50ml does last you a long time!
After trying all the serums I think I picked the best one for my skin. But I would like to have more time with the rose serum, as I’m interested to see the benefits of the galactomyces ferment. So I might place an order for some more samples.
Otherwise, the propolis serum was the most impressive one. I liked the instant visual effect it gave without feeling sticky, it felt more like an illuminating primer and held my skin super soft throughout the day. I just had such a good feeling with that one that I put it straight on my wishlist! Just need to make more space in my beauty cabinet first.
Whether you already are skin deep into the K-Beauty rabbit hole or just starting to look into it, I think iUnik, with their reasonably priced and effective products, is worth checking out! At the official iUnik website you can find 1+1 deals and they also offer free shipping option!
Where To Buy
Unique4You (Official) | Haru Haru | Koja Beauty
Have you heard of iUnik?
What’s your favorite K-Beauty product?
Share in the comments below!
*Items were kindly gifted. My opinion remains my own.