Thursday, 29 March 2012

Naruko Taiwan Magnolia Brightening and Firming Serum

Here we are, the next Naruko facial serum!  

The Taiwan Magnolia line is originally the highest line in Naruko offerings, before they bring out the Lupin Anti-Aging.  It aims to reduce dullness/yellow-ness and discolouration while firming more mature skin.  I got a set of this line in Hong Kong Colourmix store.  It is a tad more expensive than the other lines, which I can understand after using this serum and loving the other (the night cream).

Please jump to the end to read some little sharing about Naruko!

Quote from US Site:

Product Detail:  Naruko Magnolia Brightening And Firming Serum is specially designed for sallow and dull skin. Using the excellent plantain extract, together with Phytoferulin®, the patened complex, form a perfect chain of youth protection, protect your skin away from dullness, pigment and aging. Also, combine with a variety of whitening, firming, moisturizing and anti-aging ingredients, all these could improve the problem of muddy skin and provide you a bright and transparent skin.

Best For:  All skin types.

Ingredients:  Purified Water (Aqua), Taiwan Magnolia Grandiflora (Michelia Alba) Flower Water, Magnolia Grandiflora Bark Extract, Plantago Major Seed Extract, Tranexamic Acid, Phytoferulin® Extract [Kalanchoe Spathulata Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Alpine Skullcap (Scutellaria Alpina) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Masterwort (Peucedanum Ostruthium) Leaf Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Alps Wormwood (Artemisia Umbelliformis) Extract, Leontopodium Alpinum Extract, Alpine Willowherb (Epilobium Fleischeri) Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Chamolmilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract], Snow Fungus (Tremella Fuciformis) Extract, Palmitoyl Tripeptide 3, Baicalin, Alpha-Arbutin, Glycoprotein, Sodium Hyaluronate, Lecithin, Crambe Abyssinica Seed Oil, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Glycerine, Propanediol, Sclerotium Gum, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate VP Copolymer, Sodium Citrate, D-Glucono-1, 5-Lactone, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Methylisothiazolinone, Essential Oil of Lemon (Citrus Limonum)

This gentle, ecofriendly product is made without parabens, preservatives, artificial ingredients or coloring.  The product is cruelty free and is not tested on animals.

1 pump // 2 pumps // 3 pumps

My Verdict:

PRICE: 3/5 - not cheap in Naruko standard.

The first remark to give has to be its aroma.  It smells of fresh and natural flowers, maybe Magnolia(?).  Also has a slight citrus scent, probably also notes of the flowers.

Texture is light, fast-absorbing and instantly make skin feel and look better.  Very good for layering and no issue at all when used in conjunction with other things I use.  Good under make up.

Does this make my skin bright and transparent?  I'd say yes.  My skin looks soft and bright with consecutive use of this serum.  However, the other 'firming' claim doesn't perform on me.  Perhaps I don't have very sallow or loose skin to begin with.

Minor drawback:

Aside from i) the slightly higher price tag, ii) no firming effect on me, there's a no.3 drawback.  This serum texture, despite its creamier appearance, is rather light and thin, even thinner than the other liquidy serums (e.g. Rose Aqua Cubic).  Hence a 3-pump is needed at LEAST for my whole face.  That means this 30ml will be done very shortly.  I'm not even using this to do 'facial massage', as suggested on their websites!

Overall Rating: 21/25
Recommend?  Yes for those who need some brightening, has normal to oily skin, like fresh floral scents~
Repurchase?  Don't think so. Because of the price, the speed I go through this, and the fact that I have so many more new things to try!

Little Sharing:

I have an unhealthy obsession with Naruko skin care.  And I keep browsing their website, non-stop.  Naruko is a healthy growing company and they constantly bring out new products, which is fantastic!  However, the moment I'm typing this, I realise they are, yet, discontinuing more!  I don't mind if they stop making things I have never tried or don't like, but they also stop making things that sell well and I love, WHY!?!?

New things, I want to get hold of:  Rose Aqua Cubic Sheet Masks, Taiwan Magnolia Cleansing Oil, Taiwan Magnolia Cleansing Foam

Old things, sadly they got rid of:  Taiwan Magnolia Serum (it's alright), Taiwan Magnolia Night Cream (gosh I love this! review coming soon), Narcissus Fundamental Serum (love this too)

Next up from Naruko I may review their Narcissus Night Serum (which I love too), the Narcissus Day Toner (which I transferred to the Cle de Peau bottle), or the Taiwan Magnolia Cream.

Narcissus Day Toner transferred to pump bottle!

Read More:

My Review: Naruko Rose Serum
My Review: Naruko Narcissus Fundamental Serum
My Review: Naruko Raw Job's Tears Serum

USA website

Cheers :D


  1. I always been curious about naruko skincare but the botique in ny has prices inflated almost threefold! I much rather wait till my next trip to pick up some. Thanks for the review!

    1. yes yes. they're real good but still not worth the insane mark up! that's y I make sure I stock up whenever I have friends who travel to Taiwan! :P

  2. I have the Magnolia brightening night cream and while I love the smell its not hydrating enough for me. I do love Naruko skincare though!
    I am very sad they are discontinuing the narcissus fundamental serum. I will have to buy some more back ups!!!

    1. I see. So your weather/condition needs something even more hydrating. I'm so mad they are discontinuing my favs (fundamental serum and magnolia night cream)... Do stock up while it lasts! ><

  3. I came to your site cuz I was searching for review on naruko products. Never tried them before but am interested. Your site is great! I'll bookmark and come again! I just started blogging. Please come by and give me your thoughts! Thx

    1. Thanks for coming, mimika! Most Naruko stuff I tried are great - a few are not impressive though. But overall I highly recommend! Thanks for commenting and bookmarking! I'm visiting your site now :)

  4. Naruko have actually repackaged the new Magnolia line.. The serum is back and still smell the same and with bonus, they added new extra advance ingredient inside. Search for new Naruko Magnolia EX on google. Im so happy they're back :)

    1. Yea I know I know thanks for the heads up! I saw it on the Naruko TW website and local Colourmix stores too... I need to use up a few serum bits in my Naruko stash, and then I will head out and purchase the new one! :D

      ((side note: that serum no longer comes in the pump bottle.. a bit sceptical about the new design...))



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