Koh Gen Do is a Japanese luxury makeup brand that I’ve been wanting to try for a few years. I finally got the chance when they introduced a Holiday Gift Set at a great price!
Koh Gen Do focuses on natural, mineral makeup and skincare, at similar prices to Nars Cosmetics. The brand was founded in 1986 by a Japanese actress (Ai Saotome) who wanted cosmetics for sensitive skin; that could also last all day under filming conditions. They use Oriental medicine and homeopathy as the basis for the products, and never use artificial fragrances or colours which can harm skin.
The products have been featured in a lot of fashion magazines lately, because the brand is loved by so many celebrities (Alexa Chung, Kylie and Kendall Jenner, Adele, Blake Lively, Julianne Moore…) Koh Gen Do has also been used in over 200 films and TV shows; Mad Men, The Bling Ring, Still Alice, The Blind Side and more…
The foundations claim to be very gentle to skin, and can be worn all day without drying out. The foundations are all meant to have a medium coverage which glows from the inside out, to appear like your own skin.
- 3 foundations – Aqua foundation (liquid), Moisture foundation (cream) and Powder foundation
- Mineral eyeshadow palette – uses only natural pigments so the colours can’t be very bright or pigmented
- Spa Cleansing Water – made from thermal water sourced from hot springs in Izumo, Japan
- Lipsticks and glosses
- Blushes and illuminators
- Makeup remover, spa sheet masks, eye creams
The Holiday Gift Set – My Review:
I found out about the gift set on the Koh Gen Do website while I was looking at the foundations. I really wanted to try the Aqua Foundation to see if it could be a replacement for my Nars Sheer Glow. I love my Sheer Glow but I also like the sound of natural Japanese ingredients.
The foundations are all 5000 yen each (around US $41, NZD $60), and I noticed the Gift Set was on sale for 10800 yen (around US $90, NZD $130). I had to get the set because it’s such a good deal!
The set comes with:
- a full-size foundation of your choice in any colour (5000 yen)
- the new mineral eyeshadow palette (7600 yen)
- trial sizes of lipgloss, aqua foundation illuminator and makeup color base
- a pretty black and red makeup case
So that’s 12600 yen worth of full-size product, with four free products!
This foundation is a little more matte than my current HG; Nars Sheer Glow. At the moment I’m mixing it with my Sheer Glow to make it half a shade darker. It definitely delivers on the “looks like real skin” promise. It feels completely weightless on my face and lasts all day. I’ll have to see how it handles summer later. I got the lightest shade (012) and I really love the colour. It’s the first foundation that’s matched my slightly pink skin tone so I’m happy!
Maifanshi Eyeshadow Palette:
I looove the natural colours of this palette, leaning towards pink tones. These are the perfect colours for my super pale skin. I also love that they’re all shimmery/satin because matte can look really dry on my skin. The colours aren’t very pigmented (except for the darkest two) because they have a mineral base, instead of a tar base (according to Koh Gen Do). This palette is perfect for a natural everyday look, or a subtle smokey eye. I wouldn’t recommend it for bold or dramatic looks.
I love this illuminator! I think I’ll invest in the full size. It reminds me of my Mac Strobe Cream, but slightly more watery. I also like that it has a hint of pink. It can be used under or over foundation for a pretty, natural highlight.
This primer sample is white, but it also comes in 3 other shades for skin correcting. I don’t think the base is necessary, but I’m sure I’ll use it more in summer. It feels light and moisturising and doesn’t have that horrible silicone chemical smell like some primers.
I’m not a big gloss fan, but this gloss is nicer than most. It’s glossy without being super sticky and goopy, and it seems to last a long time. The colour has only a slight red tint with some shimmer so it’s pretty subtle.
Where to buy Koh Gen Do:
Let me know what you think about this review, in the comments below 🙂