Review: Innisfree's Green Tea Pure skincare line | Hello Pretty Bird! - A beauty and not-so-glamorous lifestyle blog

22 August, 2013

Review: Innisfree's Green Tea Pure skincare line

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Time for more reviews of items from the haul vaults!

Today I'll be writing about some items from Innisfree's Green Tea skincare line. I purchased a sample kit from TesterKorea last month, so I've had a few weeks to size up several of their products and see how well they work in conjunction with each other. Curious? Keep reading!

Innisfree Pure The Green Tea Seed Serum Pure Skin Pure Lotio Pure Cream Pure Sleeping pack

Contents of the Innisfree Green Tea Pure deluxe sample kit:
  • Innisfree The Green Tea Seed Serum (6 pcs)
  • Innisfree Green Tea Pure Skin (15ml)
  • Innisfree Green Tea Pure Lotion (15ml)
  • Innisfree Green Tea Pure Cream (5ml)
  • Innisfree Green Tea Pure Sleeping Pack (10ml)

In case you've never heard of it before, Innisfree is a Korean brand specializing in makeup and skincare with "natural" extracts. I'd like to say a few words about Korean skincare systems in general before I get into the review just to avoid confusion - they generally involve different (and more) components than most Western brands. Here in the USA most of us just use one moisturizer after cleansing our face, with maybe a serum or eye cream added in there if we have specific skin concerns. Some Asian (particularly Korean and Japanese) brands add in a few steps to the whole moisturizing process, the idea being that you build up several light layers of moisture rather than just just slapping on one cream.

I recommend reading this excellent post at Skin & Tonics if you want more detailed information, but generally speaking the order the products are applied in goes lightest to heaviest, even if there are a million of them. Just to point out a couple other key differences between Asian and Western skincare systems: Here, "toner" usually refers to a liquid product that cleanses your face (think witch hazel). In most Korean brands, toner is actually a very light moisturizing step, or a thin layer designed to help aid the absorption of other products. Just to make things more confusing, certain Korean brands call the toner "skin" or "balancing water", and to make things really REALLY confusing some Japanese brands call toner "lotion" (whereas the "lotion" in Korean brands is usually a light creamy moisturizer, sometimes called an emulsion). WHUTTTT. "Cream" is just what it sounds like (face cream, usually applied near the end of the routine), and "sleeping packs" are a nighttime treatment meant to be used after the cream for extra hydration, sort of like leave-in conditioner for your face. I'm not sure if this explanation has made things more or less confusing, but in any case, maybe now you have an idea what each of these products is for.

Now for some details about the individual components...

Innisfree The Green Tea Seed Serum:

The consistency of this serum is light and runny. It absorbs into the skin pretty quickly and doesn't get sticky, which is very nice! I feel like this serum adds a good bit of moisture without feeling heavy on the face.

Innisfree Green Tea Pure Skin & Lotion:

Close-up of the skin (toner).

Close-up of the lotion.

Both of these are sort of runny. The skin is sort of like a watery gel, while the lotion is creamy but thin. Neither of these are especially heavy, but I feel like they do take a few minutes to really soak into the skin. Give them time to absorb, because applying these too quickly will make your face feel sticky!

Innisfree Pure Green Tea Cream & Green Tea Pure Sleeping Pack:

Close-up of the cream.
Close-up of the sleeping pack. Looks like snot!

The cream has a firm but gel-like consistency and sinks very easily into the skin. As someone with combination skin I would say this is suitable for daytime use, but I might need something more hydrating for the nighttime and in the winter. Innisfree does make a "deep" green tea cream, which I believe is more creamy and probably better suited for nighttime use or dry skin!

The sleeping pack has a thick, snot-like consistency, which sounds gross but is fairly typical of sleeping packs. Once you rub this in it doesn't absorb right away, but the point of sleeping packs is for them to slowly settle into your skin overnight for deep hydration. Honestly, I feel like this sleeping pack did nothing for me except make my skin feel heavier - total bummer. I wish they had included a sample of eye cream or the deep cream instead. Update: I did a more in-depth review of the sleeping pack here.

Overall impressions of this range:

The first thing I noticed about this skincare kit was how heavily scented everything was - like, whoa. The smell doesn't dissipate quickly either. It's a pleasant scent (sort of like green tea with an assertive note of fruitiness), but if you're at all sensitive to fragrance then this is absolutely not for you.

I think this set is well-suited to combination skin, and might even be suitable for oily skin if you skip over the lotion or the cream. I don't think this is hydrating enough for extremely dry skin, though with the inclusion of the Deep Cream (which I haven't tried) it might be.

Some of the items from this kit were better than others. I found the sleeping pack to be utterly useless, and the skin/lotion were OK but nothing special. I thought the serum and cream were actually quite good for the price, and I'm debating whether I can tolerate the perfuminess because if it weren't for that I would absolutely consider buying them in full-size. As an overall set I feel like the items work together well, but one could probably replace the skin/lotion with something else and not suffer any ill effects.

Bottom line: Innisfree's Green Tea Pure set is a good entry-level Korean skincare line (assuming you can tolerate strong fragrances). If you're buying items individually, I would skip the sleeping pack because there are better ones out there in the same price range. Update: There is a more detailed review of the sleeping pack here.

Where to buy: I got my kit from TesterKorea. Rubyruby76 (aka "RubyRubyShop") also has this kit for sale in their eBay shop with free shipping. If you're looking for full-size items from this range you can find them both on TesterKorea and eBay, just make sure to check seller feedback carefully if you do the latter!

Have you tried any of the items from Innisfree's Green Tea line? What did you think?

This post contains affiliate links. Check out my disclosure policy for more info!


  1. I loooveee the sleeping pack!
    This is kind of embarrassing (according to the korean beauty-standards so to speak) but I actually don't own any lotion or cream or something moisturising except this sleeping pack... It works so freaking well on my dry skin and acne!
    I have written a review of it at my blog; feel free to check it out if you want to! ^_^

    1. Haha, glad it works for you! Everybody's skin type is so different that one man's trash can be another man's treasure, as they say. :)

  2. I, too, agree that the Green Tea Sleeping Pack is wonderful. I used to have normal to oily skin until my late 40's. Now at 50, I have dry, sensitive skin thanks to perimenopause and this has been the first product that has taken care of the dehydration that my skin experiences in the morning upon awakening. I'm also sensitive to fragrance yet the Green Tea set doesn't bother me, incredibly enough. I find that the layering of the products has helped my skin tremendously to maintain sustained hydration and smoothness. I've also added the Green Tea oil from that line and mix it with both the serum as a first step and sometimes with the emulsion. Just a couple of drops of that Green Tea Oil or any organic Camellia Oil (Green Tea Oil) added to the serum, for example, seems to boost hydration and counteract the alcohol contained in both the serum and Skin (toner). I'm not thrilled about alcohol being present in either the serum or the Skin (toner) as it can be irritating. So far, I haven't had any allergic reactions. I'm looking forward to trying their other lines for dry skin, too.

    1. Awesome, glad to hear you've had good experiences with it! Have you tried Innisfree's "Olive" line? I haven't, but I think it's meant for dry skin. I agree that layering products really helps... my skin is a lot better since I started using multi-step skincare.

    2. It so happens that I am waiting to receive the Olive line of Innisfree products. I found out about those after I had ordered the Green Tea line. Green Tea is an anti-inflammatory and is great for diminishing redness so I figured that it would be good for my skin overall. I had already been using organic green tea oil as part of my skin regimen with good success. Definitely, the multi-layering approach has really helped my skin with only a week of use. I already see better even toned skin and improved hydration. I'm looking forward to the Olive line to see if I can get even better hydration results. I'll let you know!

  3. I got this green tea kit as a free sample abnd I agree that it doesn't work well enough for dry skin. As my skin is abit to dry type, i feel this range doesn't provide my skin with enough hydration!

  4. Glad to hear someone else feels the same way! Have you found any other skincare lines that work better for you?

  5. I've been using Clarins for past few years, and I think they're not bad. But i always keep looking for something better for my dry skin :) how about you?

  6. I really liked Sulwhasoo's basic skincare line, but sadly it is too expensive for me at the moment. So the search continues!

  7. have you tried any snail products. it's winter here and my skin is getting drier. they work really well for me :)
    Sulwhasoo products is really expensive but you can buy them in mini sizes equally same content amount to the full size but much cheaper :)

  8. Thanks for the suggestion! I actually have picked up Sulwhasoo in mini sizes and they aren't *too* expensive... I just use up those little jars/tubes so quickly, haha!

  9. I have the Green Tea Pure Cream, and also share your thoughts :) In this dry winter it doesn't quite do it for me, and I've been slathering on shea butter and the like (yum!) instead. But when I was fortunate enough to have a break from my life and go to Perth for a few days (in the middle of winter this was heaven) it was perfect in the hot weather. Not too greasy, but the perfect amount of moisture and also sort of cooling after being in the sun. I also agree with you on the scent! I like it, but it sure is strong. I haven't really bought too much from Innisfree but I would be keen to try more. Maybe even re-purchase this one in summer.

    Anyway this comment has turned into an essay, just wanted to give you a thumbs up for this great review, and also let you know that I love your reviews and pictures! ^^

  10. Haha thanks! Funny you should comment on this, because I recently bought a larger size of one of the products and was going to do a more detailed review of it in the next couple of days. What could it be? Oooh, the suspense...

  11. Haha I only saw this now! I actually saw that post today and thought 'quelle coincidence' (in French, of course)... Prophetic much?! ;) I read your review while at work and loved it (as I LOVE all of your blog) and am going to make my way back and comment on it too :) yay!

  12. hi! i just bought a similar package as yours in Korea. just wondering, do you apply them one after another immediately after the previous one has dried up? or is there a particular time (lol) to use each product?

  13. Hi! I usually wait a minute or two between "layers" to let the products absorb. I don't think you need to let them dry completely, but I find that if I don't let them sink in for a moment they can get kind of sticky or goopy on my face...

  14. It's a pity they don't inclucde samples for the Green Tea Seed Oil :) That one is great too! An oil that is not oily ^^

  15. I would love to try the oil at some point! It sounds awesome. :)

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