Glow Recipe is a Korean skincare brand founded by Sarah Lee and Christine Chang, and with its beautiful packaging, watermelon scent and innovative products, they’ve taken over the skincare universe. But are their products worth the hype? Let’s take a closer look.
How did Glow Recipe start?
Sarah Lee and Christine Chang started Glow Recipe back in 2014 after having started their careers at L’Orèal. I find them both very inspiring, and if you’re interested in learning more about them, I can highly recommend the podcast episode from Female Startup Club they starred in. You can find it here!
The brand started as an e-commerce business when the founders wanted to make Kbeauty more accessible in the US, but once they launched their own line of products, other brands were out the door.
Their vision is that skincare should be fun; with colourful packaging, unexpected textures and innovative ingredients, they definitely do this.
Glow Recipe describe their products as easy-to-use hybrids that make your skin look like it’s glowing from within. They’re most famous for their watermelon line, which consists of a moisturiser, sleeping mask, lip balm, toner, niacinamide serum and body cream.
I’ve not tried all of their products, but I will guide you through the ones I have tried and hopefully help you decide whether this is a brand you want to try.
Hype or worth it?
Whether a brand or product is worth the hype is of course very individual, but I can only share my personal experience with Glow Recipe. So lets dive in!
Papaya Sorbet Enzyme Cleansing Balm
This is one of their latest launches and is a first cleanse, or oil / balm cleanser. It’s designed to remove makeup, SPF and dirt from your skin before you follow up with a foam or gel cleanser.
The texture of this is a solid balm. I found this to smell lovely and sweet, and although it does remove the makeup, it did leave a residue on my skin and following up with a flannel was highly necessary.
Verdict: This one is unfortunately HYPE for me.
Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask
Probably the most famous Glow Recipe product! It’s a very lightweight gel cream which is supposed to be used overnight and gently exfoliate as well as hydrating your skin. It’s a lovely texture, but this caused my skin to pill which just isn’t a pleasant experience. I didn’t find it overly hydrating either.
Banana Soufflè Moisture Cream
Yes, this really does smell like banana sweets, but not in a bad way! I was really worried about this because it’s not my favourite scent, but it’s actually quite nice. It’s a very fun texture; truly like a soufflè and very lightweight on the skin. At first, I really enjoyed this, but after a while I felt like it left my skin oily throughout the day.
Verdict: I’m still in two minds about this, but will probably say HYPE.
Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Sleeping Mask
This line also has a face sleeping mask which I haven’t tried yet. The eye cream is a very thick texture and you need the tiniest amount. Despite the thickness, I didn’t find it to be particularly moisturising and I almost found it a bit drying. For it to show an improvement on fine lines, you would have to use this for a good few months, so I can’t comment on that.
Verdict: Another HYPE for me.
Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturiser
Enough negativity, right? This was the first product I enjoyed from Glow Recipe! I do adore the scent of the watermelon line, and this is a lovely gel moisturiser which is very lightweight. For oily skin, this is a beautiful moisturiser for spring and summer as it absorbs quickly, doesn’t leave you oily throughout the day and provides a good amount of hydration.
Verdict: WORTH IT!
Watermelon Glow PHA+BHA Pore Tight Toner
Another fairly new product is this lovely hydrating yet exfoliating toner. I love a product that can offer both! This is gentle enough to use daily and it truly won’t dry out your skin. The only downside of this for me is the smell. It smells like raw vegetables gone off, but if that doesn’t bother you, it’s a truly great toner.
Verdict: I can’t stand the smell, but the product itself is WORTH IT.
Watermelon Glow Ultra-Fine Mist
This is a very fine mist which smells gorgeous and is hydrating and lovely. However, that’s about it. For me, the mist is almost too fine!
Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops
My absolute favourite Glow Recipe product is the niacinamide dew drops! This is a hybrid makeup and skincare product as it can be used as either a serum or a makeup primer. I absolutely adore it as a makeup primer and it leaves my skin looking fresh and dewy. Niacinamide is one of my favourite skincare ingredients for oiliness, hydration and protection too, so this one you must try!
Verdict: WORTH IT!
I really want to love Glow Recipe, the branding speaks to me and they have some amazing formulations. However, the reality is that their products have been a hit or miss for me. Skincare is so personal, and that’s ok!
Have you tried any Glow Recipe products? Which is your favourite?