The Body Shop Moisture White Shiso line review

Just J: The Body Shop Moisture White Shiso line review

This post is going to be a long one folks because I've got all the deets on the ENTIRE Body Shop Moisture White Shiso line. Launched recently by The Body Shop, the Moisture Shiso line aims to give you luminous, clear and glowing skin with the power of shiso.

You may recognize shiso if you've ever gone to a Japanese restaurant as it's a popular herb used in sushi preparation and condiments. For your skin however, it acts as a prevention aid that blocks the production of melanin, that nasty culprit that both protects your skin and gives you freckles and age spots.

TBS has harnessed the power of this common herb and incorporated it into a moisturizer, cleanser, serum, BB cream and spot treatment. Whitening products are huge in Asia and becoming more popular in the west, but finding ones that work are pretty tricky. I had big hopes for this line as it's affordable and TBS is known for their use of natural and ethically sourced ingredients.

Without further ado then, let's get right to it!

Product 1: Moisture White Shiso Foaming Facial Wash
The Moisture White Shiso Foaming Facial Wash is a foam cleanser that removes dead skin cells, impurities and makeup. Basically, it's your daily gunk remover.

The guts:
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine - surfactant (cleansing agent). Can be irritating for sensitive skin.
  • PEG-40 Hydrogenated castor oil - emulsifier (helps keep the product together)
  • Polysorbate 20 - surfactant
  • Glycerin - moisturizer
Price & Packaging - $15 for a 150 mL bottle which is a pretty fair value. The packaging is an opaque white bottle with a pump.

Effectiveness - I have to say, I really liked this cleanser! Never having used a foam cleanser before, I wasn't sure what to expect. Unlike a foaming cleanser, a foam cleanser is just made of foam - literally, that's all it is. I was pretty skeptical that mere bubbles could clean my dirty face, but I was pleasantly surprised by how well this worked! It didn't dry out my skin and it cleaned away all traces of leftover makeup and impurities. It's even gentle enough to use both day and night.

Verdict: Buy

Product 2: Moisture White Shiso Cleansing Oil
The Moisture White Shiso Cleansing Oil is a precleansing oil designed for use before cleansing and helps to clean off your makeup and loosen up dirt so it's more easily washed away.

The guts:
  • Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride - an emollient (helps lock in moisture)
  • PEG-20 Glyceryl Triisotearate - moisturizing ingredient
  • Isohexadecane - an emollient
  • Soybean oil - another emollient
Price & Packaging - $16 for a 125 mL flip-top bottle. 

Effectivess - Again, I have to say I was surprised by this product. It emulsified quite nicely and a quarter sized amount worked well enough to wash away most of my makeup. It didn't feel overly oily or thick and rinsed away cleanly. A great cheap alternative to my beloved Dermalogica Precleanse!

Verdict: Buy

Product 3: Moisture White Shiso Concentrated Target Perfector
Now here is the supposed star of the show: the Moisture White Shiso Concentrated Target Perfector. Containing shiso and vitamin C, this treatment is meant to be applied post-cleansing both day and night directly to any dark spots or hyperpigmentation.

The guts:
  • Glycerin - moisturizer
  • Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate - basically vitamin C. Contains antioxidants.
  • Sodium citrate - helps adjust a product's pH. Contains antioxidants.
  • Butylene glycol - moisturizer
Sadly, shiso is actually the LAST ingredient in this product.

Price & Packaging - $24 for a 10 mL rollerball. 

Effectiveness - I used this faithfully day and night for a month, ensuring I applied it first thing after cleansing and giving it time to absorb before applying any other layers of products. Now, do I think it helped my dark spots? Nope nope nope! The product dispenses nicely with the rollerball and it also feels nice when massaging it into your skin, but it does nothing to lessen spots.

Verdict: Ditch

Product 4: Moisture White Shiso Brightening Serum

The Moisture White Shiso Brightening Serum is a brightening and moisturizing serum designed to give you a youthful glow.

The guts:
  • Glycerin - moisturizer
  • Cyclopentasiloxane - an emollient. Some studies have indicated that this ingredient can accumulate in the body over time and may contribute to reproductive cancers (in animals).
  • Squalane - an emollient
  • Butylene glycol - moisturizer
Again, shiso is listed as the last ingredient.

Price & Packaging - $36 for a 30 mL bottle. Despite being only 30 mL, this bottle appears quite large and contains plenty of product. 

Effectiveness - despite the questionable ingredient list, I actually liked this serum. It had a light, gel-like texture that absorbed quickly and left no tacky residue. This would be a perfect daytime serum and was pretty decent at night as well during the summer months. I loved the cooling feeling I felt after applying this serum, but I am really disappointed in its whitening properties. Considering a serum sits on your skin all day, this is one of the products where TBS should really have amped up the shiso power. Having shiso as the last ingredient here really just sucks! 

Verdict: Ditch 

Product 5: Moisture White Shiso Moisture Cream
The second step in the two step moisturizing process, is the Moisture White Shiso Moisture Cream. This oil-free moisturizer is designed I believe for both day and night use and of course is meant to help reveal more luminous skin.

The guts:
  • Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate - aka Octinoxate, a common UV protecting ingredient. Not sure why this is in here since this cream doesn't come with SPF. There are studies that show this ingredient to accumulate in your body and could be carcinogenic at certain levels. 
  • Ethylhexyl Salicylate - usually used to stabilize sun-blocking agents and to add fragrance.
  • Octocrylene - another sun-blocking ingredient. Can irritate sensitive skin and some studies have indicated that it can accumulate in the body.
  • Isododecane - an emollient
Shiso appears midway through this ingredient list.

Price & Packaging - A 50 mL tube will cost you $30, again not a bad value as you need to use very little of this product at a time.

Effectiveness - now that I'm looking at this product's ingredients list, it all makes sense to me. I did not like this moisturizer at all because it felt just like a sunscreen. Despite being primarily made of sun-blockers though, this moisturizer doesn't state any SPF! Kinda strange me thinks. I didn't really feel like my skin was any softer or whiter with this cream. It just felt kinda greasy and sticky. I tossed this one after 3 weeks as I suspected it was making my skin break out.

Verdict: Ditch

Product 6: Moisture White Shiso BB Serum Inside
The Moisture White Shiso BB Serum Inside (I don't know what's up with the weird name) is TBS's version of a whitening BB cream. This cream provides coverage, moisture and soft-focus powders that deliver an air-brushing effect that hides flaws. 

The guts:
  • C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate - emollient
  • Dimethicone - an emollient. Since it's silicone-based, it does create a layer over your skin that both protects and prevents anything from entering in, including moisture. If you're concerned about that sort of thing, then I'd recommend avoiding this ingredient.
  • Butylene glycol - moisturizer
  • Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate - aka Octinoxate, a common UV protecting ingredient. Not sure why this is in here since this cream doesn't come with SPF. There are studies that show this ingredient to accumulate in your body and could be carcinogenic at certain levels. 
Shiso appears in the last 1/3 of the ingredients list.

Price & Packaging - $25 for a 30 mL bottle. This product comes in a pump bottle similar to the serum.

Effectiveness - out of all the products in this line, I liked the BB cream the least. Nay, I HATED this BB cream. The texture was similar to other BB creams I have tried, but more so than other BB creams, it had a distinct tackiness unique to sunscreens that I didn't like. It also was super duper white on my skin. In fact, I looked like a ghost and had to wash it off right away. Second and third attempts were better as I just used a lot less, but it still really washed me out. Seeing as this BB only comes in one shade, that's not a good thing.

Verdict: Ditch

Overall impressions
I think it's really great for The Body Shop to have come out with Moisture White and to debut it as a fully fleshed out line with products for all your skincare needs. Upon closer examination though, I'm kinda disappointed with the ingredients. A lot of the ingredients in these products are kinda questionable and the star of the show, shiso, often is barely existent. As a consumer, I'm paying for TBS' reputation as a proponent for natural solutions and based upon this, I cannot tell if that natural solution, shiso, actually works or not.

Just J: The Body Shop Moisture White Shiso line review
The after: a tad bit brighter, but spots show no lightening effect

Out of 6 products, I would only repurchase 2: the cleansing oil and the facial wash. Both were effective, affordable products that while not whitening, were great at cleansing and refreshing my skin.

Have you tried this line? What were your impressions?

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