1. First up is the On the Body Makgeolli Soap (full size - $12). I'm not really a big soap person, at least when it comes to my face, but this one apparently contains (or is made of, or somehow related to) makgeolli, which is a sweet, alcohol drink made of rice, wheat and water that contains lactic acid, which helps smooth out the skin, amino acids which are thought (by some, at least) to help keep skin taut, and certain types of vitamin B which are good for brightening the skin. Now, whether or not this soap accomplishes any of those things is beyond me. Unfortunately, once lathered up, this soap has a pH of about 10 which will probably be fairly drying, so I won't be using it long term to test its claims (I'm not chemist so won't go into the details here, but as I understand it, in rough, layman's terms, our skin is happy and healthy at a pH of around 5.5, ish, and using cleansers with too high of a pH will break down the oils that keep our skin moist and protected to a greater extent than is necessary).
Next up is what Memebox released a spoiler about, the Cleomee Three-Layer Perfume Donkey Oil Mist (full size - $59? Hard to tell as it doesn't seem to be available elsewhere). This is a "fragrant triple layer milk and oil body mist" that hydrates your skin with donkey oil (I can't tell if this is really an ingredient, and can find much evidence of any use of donkey oil in skincare, except for a few references to Armenians using it to help wounds heal. It does have it's own facebook page though!) and donkey milk (same comment as above, although it does appear on donkeymilkbeauty.com (which may or may not be biased) that donkey milk may have good moisturizing properties). You're supposed to shake this to get the layers to mix together just before spraying. I'm not sure what the layers are made up of, but they combine into this lovely, natural looking green color. This feels like most other oil mists that I've tried, but I don't have dry skin so I'm not the best judge. I'm not sure how to describe the scent, but it's not bad. It's not something I would buy as a perfume, but it thankfully does not smell like donkey.
The third item is the Migabee Bee Venom & Honey Cream (full size - $54?). True to the brand name, this is a bee-centric moisturizer, containing bee venom, royal jelly, propolis and honey. I know honey is a super popular skin care ingredient in Korea (based on Memebox offerings - this may be true of other countries as well), and bee venom is, I suppose, the "omg" aspect of this, and the theory is that it will trick your skin into thinking it's been stung (without the pain and inflammation, I hope), so that blood flow to the area is increased, stimulating collagen and elastin production. I thankfully don't have wrinkles yet, so won't be able to test out those claims, but based on short term use, it at least seems to not make my face any oilier and it seems relatively moisturizing. That being said, is it just the way gravity took effect, or does it look like half my jar is already gone?
Anyway, the next product is the Tonymoly Delight Tint Crayon in 06 Neon Pink ($8). What's special about this? It's supposed to glow in the dark! I think what they meant though is maybe that it glows under blacklight, because it most certainly was not visible in the dark. Unfortunately, I do not own a blacklight with which to try this out... In any case, as a regular old pencil, I definitely expected this to be way too bright for me to wear, considering it's called neon pink. In reality, it is pretty bright, but it's actually more wearable than I thought, and you can apply a light layer to get a wearable (for a mildly conservative environment) but definitely noticeable color. Also, it smells deliciously fruity - just like the Tonymoly delight lip tint/stain that was in some earlier boxes.
The last thing in the box is the Tosowoong Platinum Total Solution Miracle Skin Pore Tightening Pack (full size - $19). This pack (a.k.a. mask) contains platinum gold powder (unclear what that is) and tea tree oil, and is supposed to control oil, tighten pores and remove blackheads. I'm not sure why but I was very skeptical of this. I don't know if it was the packaging, the ingredients (I don't expect much skin care benefit from so-called platinum gold powder) or the smell (the box smelled a bit... minerally/coppery when I opened it, and I assumed it was this), but for some reason I just did not expect to like this at all. But I tried it on just my nose for review purposes, and it seems ok, even worth trying again on my whole face. The mask itself is a brownish/reddish cream that looks a bit like red clay, and it's surprisingly gentle. I was expecting it to not be kind on my skin and for it to burn or at least tingle, but it felt fine the entire time, and when I washed it off, while my pores did not look noticeably tighter, my skin did feel softer, so I definitely plan on this out over my whole face to see how it performs.
Anyway, that's the whole box for you. The first two were fun, but kind of hit or miss on the "OMG" aspect of it, and I felt this one was equally tame, despite Memebox's promises that they would really bring on the weird stuff. To give credit where credit is due, I suppose each product has some element that is new for me (soap made of an alcoholic drink (though I'm not particularly eager to use alcohol on my face), donkey oil and donkey milk (assuming they are actually in the product), bee venom, blacklight lip color and some unknown powder called "platinum gold"). I think for me the problem is that I can't really discern the difference each of those ingredients actually makes. But I still enjoyed it and will continue getting these boxes, even if they're not the most shocking products ever. Would love to hear anyone else's thoughts about these!