Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence (Rose Edition) Review

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The Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence is only $16 but shares very similar ingredients to the famous SK-II Essence. Could this be the dupe we’ve been searching for?

What is itBoosting essence that is used at the first stage of skin care. Provides a plentiful nutrition, and treats a various skin concerns intensively.

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How I use itImmediately after cleansing, twice a day. If I’m using a chemical exfoliant (eg. AHA or BHA), I will use that first and then the essence after. I pour a generous amount in my palms và pat gently into my skin until absorbed, or occasionally I’ll soak cốt tông pads with this for a quick masking session.

Best suited forAll skin types except those with fungal acne as Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate is a potential trigger.

Things khổng lồ noteOther than the possible fungal acne trigger above, the ingredient danh sách is pretty simple with no major irritants.

PackagingA frosted glass jar with a rose gold lid. Feels and looks as luxe as more expensive essences.

ScentNo noticeable scent despite this being the rose edition.

TextureExactly lượt thích water.

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FinishA natural finish. Seriously just imagine splashing your face with water.

Where lớn buy$16/150ml on YesStyle (get 5% off with code, $21 on Amazon, $28 on StyleKorean

Ingredients Highlight

Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate,Dipropylene Glycol,Niacinamide,Glycerin,Grapefruit Seed Extract,Acorus Gramineus Root/​Stem Extract,Perilla Ocymoides Leaf Extract,Rosa Centifolia Flower Water,Adenosine

Key ingredient Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate is the same yeast derived ingredient that’s featured in SK-II’s products, which makes this a possible SK-II Essence dupe at a much lower price! I’ve discussed fermented skincare previously & the idea is that:

Fermentation breaks down actives into smaller molecules & releases components like amino acids và antioxidants that the skin can easily absorb.

In addition we’re seeing glycerin for hydration & the superstar niacinamide, making this a seemingly better ingredient các mục on paper compared lớn the SK-II FTE.

Personally I love that Secret Key just included a few additional beneficial ingredients, và not a whole smorgasborg of dubious extracts.

Is it an SK-II Essence Dupe?

I’ve been testing this for 3+ weeks now and I’ll just say it up front: it’s not going an exact SK-II Essence dupe, but at the price you honestly shouldn’t expect it to.


What I really liked about the Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence is the value for the price. It’s one of the most affordable essences I’ve tried, yet it delivers brightening & hydrating results comparable to lớn more expensive brands.

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The only thing the SK-II does better is its ability to refine the skin & minimize the appearance of pores, which for me is a big deal. I’ve yet khổng lồ find a product that does this as well as the SK-II.

How does this Secret Key Essence compare to lớn other brands? I tested different 16 facial essences, and here are the best ones