7 Oct 2016

The Moisturizing Power of Starfish Collagen: Sorabee Balancing Foam Cleanser, Skin, Essence and Lotion Review

I believe those of you who follow my blog knows that I am a detailed, results-oriented and honest blogger right? Testing the performance of products, especially skincare ones take time. So although I received these products from Sorabee Malaysia quite some times ago, I am only ready to talk about it now. Many apologizes for the delay.

Sorabee is a new brand from South Korea launched by KbeautyZone Sdn Bhd in 2014. The entire concept of the brand is very much similar to Laneige but different in the way that while Laneige uses better water technology, Sorabee utilizes the beauty secrets of marine ingredients such as algae and starfish collagen to achieve better skin health.

For those of you who are familiar with the ever-changing beauty trend in South Korea, you might notice that they use a lot of bold, revolutionary and novel ingredients in their skincare products. Products with animal ingredients such as Guerisson horse oil cream, It's Skin snail cream, Elizavecca pig collagen mask, Freeset donkey milk mask and so on are hot hits all around the world. People are seeing results from these products, even though they are not conventional and scientifically-backed.

But for our star products, marine collagen is indeed an ingredient with decent scientific research backing. I guess most of you are probably aware that collagen is usually not what you think it does when it comes to skincare. Topical application of collagen cannot stimulate the production of new collagen in the skin, nor will it replenish collagen loss due to aging. Collagen molecules are simply too large to penetrate the epidermis so any effect they may have are on the skin surface. But that doesn't mean that collagen is obsolete.

Collagen is a great moisture binder in skincare, especially marine derived collagen which is safer than animal collagen. It can naturally condition the skin, moisturize, smooth and improve skin texture due to better moisture retention ability of the skin. Scientific research on starfish found that starfish has melanin inhibitory effect. In other words, it can effectively reduce and prevent the formation of hyperpigmentation on your skin. Besides, since starfish is an animal with the unique ability to regenerate limbs, or regrow into a separate entity, it may signal potential skin repairing and regenerating ability of this miracle creature. Existing research also shows that starfish has profound wound-healing ability. In short, although collagen in skincare doesn't work the way it does for oral consumption, it is still a decent skin moisturizer, skin lightening and wound-healing ingredient.

Sorabee Balancing Foam Cleanser (RM 79.50/100g)

This is a whip-type foam cleanser. It comes in a creamy paste and will lather into rich, bouncy foam. Sorabee claims that this is a deep-cleansing cleanser to lift impurities and sebum but I also found this to be really gentle and moisturizing on the skin. Sort of like the Nature Republic Aloe Vera Foam Cleanser. It has a pH between 6-7, which is on the higher side but I don't find it irritating or drying.
Ingredients (CosDNA)
Water, Stearic Acid, Glycerin, Lauric Acid, Myristic Acid, Potassium Hydroxide, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Lauramide DEA, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Propylene Glycol, PEG-8, Beeswax, Panthenol, Beta-Glucan, Collagen, Luminaria Japonica Extract, Mineral Salts, Polyquaternium-7, PEG-14M, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Fragrance, Propylparaben
The cleansing agents used in this cleanser is similar to most other creamy whip-type cleansers from Nature Republic, Hada Labo, Nano White and so on. However, this cleanser contains a high number of moisturizing ingredients such as beeswax, panthenol, beta-glucan, collagen, brown algae, and so on which may explain its gentle and moisturizing cleansing experience. Also contains the preservative propylparaben but since this is a cleanser so I will give it a pass.

Sorabee Balancing Skin (RM 111.30/130ml)

In Korea, skin refers to toner hence this is a hydrating and balancing toner. Sorabee claims that this toner can calm, hydrate, strengthen the skin's moisture barrier, improve elasticity and deeply moisturize the skin. I have finished this toner and think that instead of hydrating, this feels more like a cleansing toner. In other words, this is closer to astringent than hydrating toner like Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion. You can definitely double cleanse your face with this on a cotton pad. It comes in a runny, non-viscous watery liquid with mild alcohol and strong cosmetic scent. It reminds me of my mom's anti-aging products. 
Ingredients (CosDNA)
Water, Collagen, Butylene Glycol, Alcohol, Glycerin, Mineral Salts, Porphyridium Cruentum Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Sodium Citrate, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Methylparaben, Fragrance, Ethylparaben
This balancing toner has a rather simple but effective ingredients list. The alcohol content and simpler ingredients show that this is indeed more of an astringent that regulate sebum, double cleanse and hydrate instead of nourishing and moisturizing. Nutritive ingredients include mineral salts, collagen, red algae, hyaluronic acid, biosaccharide gum-1, and licorice root extract. And all of these are moisturizers with water-binding and antioxidizing ability. Red algae is also found to promote cellular turnover while reversing UV damage and aging.

Sorabee Balancing Lotion

This is a milky emulsion/lotion to balance, smoothen and moisturize the skin. Consistency-wise, I would say that this is slightly lighter than Innisfree Jeju Sparkling Lotion and Hada Labo Hydrating Milk. It still can be fairly absorbed but I personally detest anything milky so this is not my cup of tea.
Ingredients (CosDNA)
Water, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Collagen, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Cyclohexasiloxane, Sodium Hyaluronate, Mineral Salts, Porphyridium Cruentum Extract, Ceramide 3, C8-12 Acid Triglyceride, Ethylhexyl Stearate, Cholesterol, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Phytosphingosine, Stearic Acid, Oleic Acid, Lactic Acid, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Cetearyl Olivate, Sorbitan Olivate, Glyceryl Stearate, Tocopheryl Acetate, PEG-100 Stearate, Dimethicone, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Laureth-23, Fragrance, Triethanolamine, Butylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Carbomer
Despite my personal distaste of Milky Lotion, this Sorabee Balancing Lotion actually contains a good load of quality moisturizers. It has collagen, macadamia oil, white meadowfoam oil, hyaluronic acid, red algae, ceramide, lecithin, phytosphingosine, shea butter and so on. Macadamia oil is an excellent anti-oxidizing and nourishing emollient without the stickiness of silicone. White meadowfoam, on the other hand, has additional anti-aging, wrinkles-care benefits in addition to moisturizing. Phyotosphingosine is derived from ceramide and is a good anti-bacterial, anti-acne and skin replenishing ingredient. Of course, this lotion also contains a few questionable preservatives such as butylparaben and propylparaben which is up to your own discreet whether or not you want to use this since these paraben concentration is probably pretty low.

Sorabee Balancing Essence

Here comes our star product today – the Sorabee Balancing Essence. Actually, I was pretty turned off by the scent when I first used it. It smells like my mom’s anti-aging cosmetic products. It is of course very subjective but sometimes when the scent of a product turns you off, it is hard for you to finish it. But, as I keep using it, I am kinda impressed by its performance.

As you can see, the texture is pretty light-weighted, sort of like the consistency of the Laneige White Plus Renew Original Essence. It has excellent spreadability, leaving skin silky soft and visibly plumper. And with continued to use, I do notice beautiful “gwang” on my face. I am not sure is it because of better hydration, or the ingredients that have done the magic. But I am really impressed that this hydrating essence manages to give me that "gwang" that only a selected few manages to give.
Ingredients (CosDNA)
Water, Collagen, Diglycerin, Alcohol, Glycerin, Niacinamide, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Phenyl Trimethicone, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Phellinus Linteus Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, PEG-15 Glyceryl Isosterate, Butylene Glycol, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Methylparaben, Fragrance, SD Alcohol 39-C, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Leaf Extract, Squalane, Octyldodecanol, Ethylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Allantoin, Turnera Diffusa Leaf Extract, Porphyridium Cruentum Extract, Mineral Salts
As discussed previously, marine collagen is proven effective as a skin lightening and wound-healing ingredients. It is also a great moisturizer and water-binder. In addition, this essence is stuffed with some really delicious ingredients like niacinamide, biosaccharide gum, green purslane extract, hyaluronic acid, witch hazel extract, squalene, allantoin, red algae and mineral salts. Niacinamide has proven to be one of those ingredients that have made a difference on my freckles and sun spots, which I will write a separate post on later. It is also a powerful antioxidant, skin soothing and moisturizing ingredient. Green purslane extract is an anti-inflammatory, skin lightening, and wrinkles improving miraculous herb. Witch hazel is an astringent normally used to regulate sebum production and kill acne-causing bacteria. It can also reduce flakiness. As for mineral salts, it is found to improve cellular metabolism and blood circulation to the skin. It is also an essential ingredient to restart the signaling process that slow down with age. Salts also allow moisturizers to absorb moisture and bind moisture to the skin more effectively.


In short, the Sorabee Balancing line is an premium skincare range targeting younger women in their 20s and even 30s. It is most suitable for individuals looking for decent marine-derived, anti-oxidizing, moisturizing and soothing skincare. Most skin type will adore this. Oily and acne-prone is advised to patch test or check out the trial kit before using the Balancing Lotion. Dry skin might find the Balancing Toner and Essence too light-weighted and not powerful enough for their skin type.

Are you ready for starfish yet? Check out their counters and website below:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sorabeemalaysia
Official website: http://www.kbeautyzone.com.my/
[Disclaimer] Products are sponsored by Sorabee Malaysia. However, all reviews and opinion are honest and my own. All copy right of contents and images in this article is strictly mine.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...