Fermented skincare based on sake? | Neogen Dermatology Real Ferment Micro Essence Review

Sunday 3 November 2019

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

A year ago I wrote a post about Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum. I told you back then that to get better effects - use it with today's main star - Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence. It's been a year and the fermentation process in skincare is still famous. How does Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro duo work? Are they better together or alone? Are ferments good for your skin?

About Neogen

I did this so many times, but it's a tradition for me to introduce you to every brand. Neogen is a brand which you can often see on Kherblog. It was one of the first K-beauty brands I've tried. I'm sorry to my ex-boss if she reads this, but I used to take a more extended break and go shopping for Neogen instead of eating dinner. Nothing has changed - I still skip dinner breaks to perform the treatment and go home earlier. My history with Neogen started three years ago, but this brand is not that young. Neogen is a brand that mix technology and nature to create products. It's sister-brand RE:P is probably the first K-beauty Vegan brand with Leaping Bunny Certificate - if you search for a certificate, you'll find that actually Neogen's and RE:P's mother-company - Outin Futures - got certificated. Neogen has its youtube channel with useful skincare tips called NEOGEN DermaTV. In 2018 Neogen released new moisturizer in collaboration with Joan Kim (fun fact: you can find the photo I took in Joan's video). I think that before 2019 Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence was only available at Sokoglam as an exclusive, but right now you can find it at The Meekah too.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

What's an essence

I've read thousands of essence definitions, but the one I feel is the most accurate is describing essence as a lightweight but a well-concentrated liquid solution. Essences are preparing the skin for upcoming steps in the routine, but they also add hydration. They are somewhere between toner and serum. Previously toner was used to balance pH of the skin after the cleansing, but nowadays it's not necessary since we've got cleansers with pH = 5,5. Some people use only essences, but I can't imagine giving up on toner.

What's a fermentation process

To understand the product better we need to learn more about fermentation. If you've Slavic or Asian, I guess you know this process well - we make alcohol and lots of dishes based on this process. Fermentation is a method of food preservation with lots of benefits to your guts and health like improves digestion and support gut flora even if some fermented food isn't that lightweight. In skincare, fermentation is a process that should break down the ingredient to make it easier to absorb by the skin. You can think about skin like a club bodyguard who won't let people inside if they didn't care about the dress code. In this case, it's more like "your size is too big to fit in". That's why collagen in skincare only makes a film on the surface of the skin. According to Neogen, Real Ferment Micro Essence is made with over 93% of micro bio fermented complex. It's made out of five ingredients such as Bifida Ferment Lysate, Saccharomyces Ferment Filtrate, Betula Alba Juice, Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake) and Aspergillus Ferment.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence


Neogen Dermalogy Real Micro Ferment line is the most beautiful line designed by Neogen. Same as with serum, it's a glass container with an opalescent coat that makes the product 'instagramable'. It's aesthetically pleasing. The product came in a paper box and you have 12 months to use it. I have a problem with a cap if I won't open it before I start my skincare since my hands aren't dry but the application is very easy and you shouldn't be scared of applying too much because of the texture. The packaging is gorgeous - similar to a serum, it has a holographic effect on the bottle.

Texture & Scent

I usually hate the smell of every fermented product. Neogen essence is a surprise because I can't smell fermentation at all. The texture is just a transparent liquid.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence - Ingredients

What's inside Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence? How different is essence than a serum?

Bifida Ferment Lysate, Saccharomyces Ferment Filtrate, Betula Alba Juice, Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake), Aspergillus Ferment, Glycerin, Dipropylene Glycol, Methyl Gluceth-20, Water, Betaine, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Trehalose, Lactobacillus, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Caprylyl Glycol, Trideceth-10, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Tromethamine, 1,2-Hexanediol, Tropolone, Allantoin, Butylene Glycol, Coptis Japonica Extract, Arginine, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Calcium, Carbonate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Adenosine, Niacinamide, Dextrin, Glycine, Serine, Glutamic Acid, Aspartic Acid, Leucine, Alanine, Lysine, Tyrosine, Phenylalanine, Proline, Threonine, Valine, Isoleucine, Phenoxyethanol, Histidine, Methionine, Cysteine

I'm going to start with micro bio ferment complex. Bifida Ferment Lysate is a probiotic that is told to be effective in protecting the skin from UV damage and it can make sensitive skin less sensitive. It can be helpful with the moisture of the skin and you can find this product in both - Asian and Western skincare products. Next ingredient on the list is Saccharomyces Ferment Filtrate. This fermented ingredient is a moisturizer which is considered to be great for sensitive skin. Betula Alba Juice is an antiseptic ingredient, it can be really good for acne-prone and oily skin. Why there's Sake in a skincare product? Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake) is a byproduct of the rice fermentation. If you think that sake is bad for your skin because it's alcohol, you shouldn't be scared. Rice Ferment Filtrate is a moisturizing ingredient, but it can help with skin brightening. Last but not least, Aspergillus Ferment. This ingredient brightens the skin and helps with pigmentation.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

Neogen essence isn't based on five different ingredients. There's more! Glycerin is the best moisturizer available for the skin. Betaine is another moisturizer derived from sweet beetroots. Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract is an antioxidant, lots of products contain this ingredient because this ingredient can help with damage caused by UV to your skin - it won't be a spectacular effect but it's still here to help your skin. Lactobacillus is a probiotic. Allantoin reminds me a lot of the time when I was a child since Allantoin treatments were popular back in the days. The popularity of it wasn't an accident, Allantoin is a soothing ingredient, ideal for sensitive skin. It boosts the wound healing process. Coptis Japonica Extract is an antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory ingredient. Sodium Hyaluronate is a moisturizer and Adenosine speeds up the wound healing process. Niacinamide is one of the most wonderful ingredients. It's also called Vitamin B3. It's an anti-ageing ingredient, but why I use Niacinamide in my routine is the fact that it helps with pigmentation. Glutamic Acid and Aspartic Acid are amino acids, so they won't exfoliate your skin, but they hydrate the skin. Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence is a moisturizing bomb.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

My routine with Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

I love essences. It's hard to find a good essence in Europe - especially when lots of local brands started to release their essences that are nothing in comparison to Asian essences. I didn't try SK-II which is a Japanese brand that released the most known fermented essence aka Pitera Essence so I can't say what's the difference between Japanese and Korean essences, but there are huge differences between Asian and Western brands if it comes to the texture of the essence. The essence has a light texture with a delicate fermentation scent. Small amounts are enough to hydrate the entire skin. I like to rub the essence in my hands and then pat it onto my skin. Sad information - if you have fungal acne then neither Essence nor Serum is recommended for your skin since fermented ingredients can trigger the growth of fungal acne. According to Neogen, this serum should help your skin with moisture, uneven skin tone and skin elasticity. It'll strengthen your skin due to the high content of probiotics. It's hard to say if my skin is stronger than before, but it's a serum which I love to mix with Vitamin C. Ferments + Vitamin C duo is ideal to fight uneven skin tone. Sadly, in my case, if I don't stick to a healthy diet my skin doesn't save the effects of clear face for so long, but since I started to use Neogen Essence my skin is brighter. I've got sensitive skin and it goes so well with this essence. If you see tiny bits in the essence - don't be scared, sometimes you need to shake the essence before you use it. It's a good essence, but I won't tell it's the best essence I've ever tried because I believe that there are more products to try to give a final verdict.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum

A year ago I tested Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum which since then I barely used because I was hoping to test it with Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence. It's a gel-like, cream-like formula with a strong scent typical for fermented ingredients - it reminds me of wine.

Bifida Ferment Lysate, Saccharomyces Ferment Filtrate, Betula Alba Juice, Butylene Glycol, Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake), Glycerin, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Aspergillus Ferment, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Niacinamide, Cyclohexasiloxane, Polyacrylate-13, Water, Panthenol, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Polyisobutene, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Cetearyl Olivate, Sorbitan Olivate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polysorbate 20, Sorbitan Isostearate, Lactobacillus, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Polyacrylate, Caprylyl Glycol, Adenosine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tropolone, Centella Asiatica Extract, Pichia/Resveratrol Ferment Extract, 1,2-Hexanediol, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Glutathione, Ascorbic Acid, Ubiquinone, Thioctic Acid, Tocopherol, Phenoxyethanol, Disodium EDTA

According to the brand, this product is made out of fermented ingredients in 61%. Ingredients used in this serum are very similar to ingredients found in Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Essence. There are some different ingredients like Panthenol - also called Pro-Vitamin B5 - a humectant. Or Ubiquinone, which you probably know as Coenzyme Q10, an antioxidant used in skincare because it can help with wrinkles.


Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence and Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum

How do Serum and essence work together

I thought that mixing Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence with Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum will blow my mind. I was wrong, it didn't blow my mind. My skin prefers them both separately. When I add essence and serum to my routine, my skin starts to feel a bit upset - to the points of breaking out. It's way better for me to use essence in the morning and serum during the evening routine. Maybe you'll love this combination more than I do.

Neogen Real Vita C Powder Lemon

Mixing Neogen Essence with Vitamin C Powder

Instead of a Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Serum, my skin loves the mixture of Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence and one tiny spoon of Neogen Essence with Vitamin C Powder.

Lactose, Ascorbic Acid(17%), Allantoin, Trehalose, Ribose, Betaine, Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Water, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract(0.1ppm), 1,2-Hexanediol

Ascorbic Acid is an antioxidant that promotes collagen production and pigmentation fading. It has a positive meaning to our skin even if this form of Vitamin C is not so stable. Vitamin C in skincare comes in many different forms and Ascorbic Acid is one of them. I made a post before on the Powder + Serum duo. Both products are effective. A couple of months ago I used to add Neogen Essence with Vitamin C Powder to my moisturizer but essence seems to be more effective when you mix them with Ascorbic Acid Powder. The spoon of powder is very tiny, it has 1g max or even less.

The full review of Neogen Real Vitamin C Powder is available here.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

How to use an essence

There are some ways in which you can use essence.
1. As an additional moisturizing step - just normally add essence between toner and ampoule or serum.
2. DIY mask - for this step I encourage you to buy thin pads like Pyunkang Yul 1/3 Cotton Pads or any other rayon pads. They don't need lots of product but a small bit of essence mixed with rayon pads will be ideal for a 5-minute moisturizing mask.
3. You can mix the essence with powder treatments like Vitamin C powder - just make sure that the powder you want to use should be mixed with water-based substances.
4. 7-step toner technique - no one is talking about 7-step toner anymore, but if your skin feels dehydrated then layering the essence might be also helpful. Mix it with clay - instead of pure water, mix clay with the essence.
5. Instead of a toner.
Do you use your essence in any other way? Let me know in the comment section.

Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence

Where to buy Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence and how much does it cost?

The 100ml bottle of Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence costs €34.90 on The Meekah. I made two posts about The Meekah before, it's a new store located in Germany but they ship to other European countries. Overall, it's an interesting essence which I recommend to try - especially if you want to try fermented products.

Have you ever tried Neogen before?


*** This post was made in collaboration with The Meekaheven though it still shows my personal opinion on the topic and product**

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