Fresh Face

Let's be honest here: we all judge a book by it's cover. It comes in many forms: from eating macarons for their cute colors to swiping right to that guy on Tinder purely because of his sexy ab shots (guilty!). The truth is that many of our decisions in life are undeniably based on appearance. That holds particularly true for the act of cosmetics shopping. I can't tell you how many times I've stared lustily at the gorgeously packaged (yet extortionately priced) face products at Aesop, or envied the women who came out of Chanel Beauty carrying a bottle of signature perfume, whether it be No. 5 or Noir.

With my obsession with minimal packaging, I initially found it difficult to purchase simply packaged cosmetics in Hong Kong, with its taste tending towards girly Japanese/Korean makeup. It seems like the inverse law is at work in the beauty world - the lesser the embellishments, the steeper the price. However, I got lucky with the Japanese brand Muji, famous for their simple homeware and gel pens that Asian teenagers fawn over. Muji also produces great makeup and skincare line. With a price point comparable to drugstore products, it surprised me with its quality (and beautiful packaging of course). That their products are relatively fragrance-free is also a plus.

Of all the products I purchased in my skincare shopping binge, the best was the face soap, which generated a rich lather, and the toning water, which did a great job of removing excess dirt from the skin. Whilst the moisturizing cream was a little too thick, the face scrub could have had a denser and rougher consistency with greater exfoliating power. All in all, they were decent products worth the affordable price. I'm hoping that they'll be successful in alleviating my teenage breakouts that have persisted way too late into my teenage years for my taste, despite many different products over the years. Maybe less really is more.

Available at Muji stores or online