Review: SKII Facial Treatment Essence

(Check out my updated review 5 years later, by clicking here!)

Howdy folks!

I’m here to write my long-due post on SKII’s Facial Treatment essence. I first raved about it here on my July Monthly Favorites, but haven’t gotten time to do it till now!

I hope you guys forgive me, and I’ll start this review without further ado!

P/S: I’m not the first person to rave about this amazing product, I’m sure you’ll find many others online, but I still have to HAVE to add to the list of gleaming testimonials.

Background Info

Containing more than 90% Pitera, this much loved miracle water is a must have for healthy, radiant skin. It helps maintain the skin’s natural renewal cycle to its optimum condition to allow skin nourishment. It also works to balance the skin’s PH and sebum secretion, so oily and dry areas are properly moisturized.

Credits to: SKII Official Website

My Story with SKII’s FTE

Henceforth, for the rest of this post, the Facial Treatment Essence will be referred to as FTE for convenience.

I first purchased the FTE in 2010 when I was facing extremely dry skin from my horrendous laser experience and needed something that would save me. Everything I was putting on my face hurt, besides FANCL. Masks, lotions, what have you, would all either break me out or turn my face redder than the sun. I was depressed.

However, looking back, I figure I should NOT have bought some tester bottle from one of those dodgy parallel import shops in Ang Mo Kio because it could have been 1) fake or 2) expired. Anyway, I wasn’t really earning money at that time so I went with the risk. It cost me $25 by the way, for the same amount I would’ve gotten FREE if I just worked up the nerve to approach SKII and asked for samples.

Anyway, long story short(er), my face BURNED upon usage and broke out horrendously. I passed it on to my friend who had the same results. I was determined I was one of those people who wasn’t fated to use this, so I passed it.

Hit forward 3 years later to now, and I was curious again. Lucky for me this time, I had the sense to ask for a sample from the SKII counter in Raffles City and OH MY GOODNESS I fell in love with it straightaway. Forget any redness or bumps, everything was good. So I conclude that it was either too rich for me when I first started or the product was just a plain ol’ fake/spoilt.


I love and hate the packaging. I love it because it looks so classy. The metal cover atop a frosted glass base. It just deserves to be on tumblr for even looking this good. I know I know. But there are flaws mind you, there are flaws.

For one, I’m always so deathly afraid of dropping the bottle and having it break so all my precious precious (and expensive) serum is all over the floor. I always envision myself lying amongst the scattered glass and letting my tears mingle with the Facial Treatment Essence, lol. I’m such a drama queen.

No but really, it really does seem breakable (as to whether it is, I wouldn’t know, I haven’t tried breaking it). It worries me to take it on trips because you know that people who handle luggages aren’t the most delicate or careful in the world. I see myself wrapping it in a towel or something so my heart can rest in peace. Plus the fact that it is “glass” and somewhat transparent means you have to keep it somewhere away from the sun so it does not oxidize as quickly.

What I do like is how the “spout” of the bottle because it ensures a good amount of product comes out. I hate it sometimes with pump bottles (though they are more hygienic) when there’s obviously a good amount of product left but it just cannot be reached! That infuriates meeeeeee. But yes that’s one thing good about this! I always always get to finish and savor my FTE to the last drop! ^^


Right, the main ingredient in SKII’s FTE is… *cue music*… Pitera! It’s apparently the magic of rice in maintaining radiance and youth! It’s so magical that the FTE claims to have a 90% concentration of it. I am a LITTLE skeptical about that but, oh well, what can I do aye?

Pitera aside, there are other ingredients such as water, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Benzoate, Sorbic Acid, so on.. but what really gets me is the presence of Methylparaben.

I am not a big fan of parabens, especially as someone with sensitive skin. As someone who has been a long time user of organic products so this was a little bit of a rude shock to me. However, as it turned out, my skin did not react to it (besides one week “adjusting”) so it was all good.

Part of me still doesn’t like it and it irks me a little bit every time I buy a new bottle but.. it’s too good to say no to! Haha


People have suggested two popular methods. One is to pour it into a cotton pad and wipe/dab it all over your face and neck, two is to pour it into your hands and pat it into your face.

Personally, as someone who has tried both, I prefer the latter. It lessens waste (it always killed me to throw the pad away when it was still slightly damp) and I use less each time. I know some say you get a more even spreading of the product by using a cotton pad but I just find it so economically unfriendly. So yes, that’s that.

Before And After

As you can see, my skin is less oily, has less blemishes, looks healthier and has that “glow” to it. I have to say, even I am very impressed because photos can only catch that much. And I swear upon my life I did not use any Photoshop to enhance any effects besides evening out the colors for the photos side-by-side.

Since I’ve been using SKII, my skin problems have lessened: less pimples, lightening dark spots, lesser issues with dry skin, it’s all in a bundle. This has been my lifesaver in so many ways, truly.

This is how I look now with and without makeup. I look fairer with because of my sunblock and powder naturally, but I still love how they’re radiant either way. I feel fairer and I feel my skin looks more translucent and healthy!

Pros and Cons

I’m sure many of you have heard AMAZING things and also HORRIBLE things about this Miracle Water. None of those things are wrong per se because they are all based on opinions and different products work differently on different people (woo! that’s a lot of the word ‘different’ in one go).

However, I’ll state the Pros and Cons for myself, and you guys decide if the pros outweight the cons, or the other way around.


  • Makes skin radiant and glowing
  • Skin is moisturized and soft
  • Pores are smaller
  • Face feels firmer
  • Dark spots are lightened


  • It’s expensive, no doubt
  • There are parabens inside
  • Slight ‘breaking out” during the adjustment period
  • The bottle isn’t too travel-friendly
  • Your skin goes back/worsens when you stop

I haven’t actually “stopped” using it before, I’ve kept on since my first use. But Ashley reported to me that upon stopping the use of the FTE, her skin looked “bleh” (her words not mine) and lost its glow…. It could be our overactive imagination, but it seems 1000000 other people have reported the same thing so… yes.

When Can I Start?

Anytime after 15. That’s what the Sales Assistant told me anyways. To play safe though, I don’t think you should be using such potent products at such a young age. I think 18 is an okay age. From 15 onwards, just make sure you slather on good sunblock (DON’T EVEN THINK OF USING BANANA BOAT) and use respectable skincare brands.

When I was 14, I was using Neutrogena and that was fine enough for my skin. I started getting very bad skin at about 17 and that’s when I had to resort to greater methods. Obviously I did not start then, because I did not have the financial means to.

Overall Thoughts

I L.O.V.E this Facial Treatment Essence. Nothing could tear me away from it. Besides the fact that I may not be able to afford it if I ever lose my job *touch wood* and if the effects start wearing off/causing problems.

My boyfriend normally doesn’t react much to my skin, his answer being, “Same” everytime I ask, “Does my skin look different today????” With this though, he does kind of have that ‘enlightening’ moment where he goes, “Ohhhh yeah!! You look so glowy now!”

When Ash first came back from Hong Kong, she thought I was using some highlighter/illuminator on my face! I was so proud to say that it was just SKII, and that now I’ve converted her to the bright side.. heh heh heh.

If you haven’t tried this out, just ask for a sample from the SKII counter. At the same time, you could ask for a skin consultation! They’d even help you take a photo of your skin now (complete with skin analysis) and you could come back 1-2 months later after using their products to compare if it really works! I think that’s an absolutely amazing system to have, so you should go check it out.

If this FTE hasn’t worked out for you, I’m truly sorry about it. Speaking as someone who loves and lives it, I wish it worked the wonders on you that it did for me. If you had a terrible experience as I did before, why not give it one more try? It could be due to age or skin factors before that may not affect you anymore! 🙂

Do you guys love this too? Give us a shout out and let us know!

PS: Once again, for those who are curious, you can read about my updated SK-II Review Here!

Overall Rating: 9.5/10

Stockists: any SKII Counters, DFS, Robinsons, TANGS, Metro

Yay to SKII!!!


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