I can’t figure out why this photo looks blurry… someone please halp.

This product was sent to me by StyleKorean for review purposes. I was not paid for this post but please note that affiliate links are used on my blog. These go towards supporting Oh My Stellar and future content.

When it comes to skincare products, I like to take my time with writing the review. After all, you can never knew the effects of something after only a few uses and it’s good to try things in different conditions too. The weather has been getting really cold in Sydney lately and, because of it, I am in at middle period where I am deciding the best way to change up my skincare routine. My skin has been fairly uneven, with some very dry areas and my T-zone still becoming oily by late midday, so I did change up my routine a few times while trying out this product.

This is a cult beauty item from MISSHA, Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence. My aunt actually uses bottles of this almost religiously and I know a lot of beauty bloggers swear by it as a much more affordable dupe of SKII, which effects that as just as good – so I’ve been looking to trying this out for a long time. This product is used at the beginning of your skincare routine – it helps to cleanse, hydrate and prep your skin for the absorption of other products, so you can see why it is such an important step. It claims to also restore, rejuvenate and give you a glowing complexion.

As it is similar to a toner, I was actually very confused about this at first but I have since learned (I think) that the FTE is to be used after a toner, and is actually a different product. It is a unique step in the Asian skincare routine and is usually fermented with an active yeast ferment ingredient (read from here). Some people do use a FTE instead of a toner though and, for this, I recommend to trust your own judgement and how your skin feels after cleansing.

I got this product sent to me by StyleKorean for review purposes. You can get yours on their website for USD$36.03, a discounted price from USD$42.39, and a significantly lower price than the SKII essence that this is the dupe for. The Intensive Moist version of this, which is the one I am reviewing, is also the new, upgraded version of this product for enhanced hydration purposes.

Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review

So this product comes in a silver box that looks pretty luxe (and, unfortunately, is a breeding ground for finger prints like you can see below). Overall, it looks expensive but it isn’t anything very special. The back of the box has some information about the product – this product aims to repair wrinkles and to whiten (which, in this case, usually means the fading of dark spots and melanin reduction, not bleaching). The FTE – which is one of StyleKorean’s best sellers – contains 80% Fermented Yeast Concentrate and Himalayan Purple Barley. It has also been dermatologist tested for safety (as you can see on the box).

Personally, I think the packaging is decent but it isn’t the best that I have seen. It doesn’t look cheap but, unfortunately, seems to be lacking a sort of classiness that I like to see in packaging design – especially since this is a mid-range skincare product. Hopefully, with the next upgrade, MISSHA can look into improving this too.

Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review

The bottle comes with a pretty frosted design and I actually like this one a lot more than the box – it looks classier but, once again, is also prone to finger prints if you have oily fingers. Luckily, it’s not that difficult to clean with a make up wipe and I find myself doing that a lot since I’m fairly pedantic. This comes in a 150mL size, which is pretty large, but the water essence formula means that you do use it up quite easily. The bottle has a plastic cap that you remove to use – you can either pour this product onto your hands to apply (which is what I do when I’m lazy or in a rush) or soak a cotton pad. The latter uses up more product, but helps to clean your face as well; I find that I can remove any left over make up like this.

There is a faint yeast scent from the product, but it’s quite light and I can only smell it from the bottle. Once I apply it, it feels really refreshing with a light, water-like formula that absorbs quickly and provided immediate hydration as well. I’m  pretty happy to use this product under my make up for this reason.

After applying this product, I would follow it up with the rest of my skincare, whether it is my serum, retinol etc – from lightest to thickest formula.

Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review Missha The First Treatment Essence Intensive Moist StyleKorean Review

I tried to get a better photo of the product on my hand but it is so watery! As soon as I applied it and went to take a photo, the product would have already dripped down my hand – it took a while attempts just to get that effect.

Anyway, so I tried out the product for a couple of weeks and it is definitely good and has been the most effective compared to my other toners in terms of hydration, refining my skin texture and even enhancing the use of my other skin products. However, the whitening and anti-wrinkle effects of this are quite subtle. I have some pigmentation on my skin that has been bothering me lately and this wasn’t able to completely get rid of it, though my skin does look brighter when I use this product. It has helped my skin to better retain it’s moisture and on days that I don’t use it (like two days ago), I feel that my skin is definitely drier.

I have used up a small part of the bottle after a few days, so the water formula does use up quicker (especially since I apply it quite liberally) but it isn’t too bad. The product isn’t cheap, but it’s a lot more affordable than the SKII it is a dupe for.

I can see why it is a staple of so many peoples skincare routines because it really is good for what it is. However, I don’t think that I will be completely settling on this product yet – as I think that there will be potential for better products to win in the market. For now though, I will be continuing to use this.

Here’s the verdict!

I’m going to start using a new review system and, hopefully, this will make things easier for people.


A light, water-like FTE with hydration properties – similar to a toner


  • Affordable dupe for SKII
  • Lightweight and easy to absorb formula
  • Good for retaining hydration
  • Evens out and refines skin tone
  • Enhances the use of other skincare products
  • Can be used like a toner


  • Average packaging – nothing too special
  • Anti-wrinkle and whitening products are subtle and not very visible


  • PACKAGING | 3/5
  • PRICE POINT | 4/5
  • HYDRATION | 5/5
  • ANTI-WRINKLE | 2/5
  • WHITENING | 3/5



Although this product lacks in anti-wrinkle properties like it promises, and the whitening properties are also average (with visible brightening but minimal improvement of dark spots), it definitely wins in terms of hydration and improving my skin texture. It is the first FTE that I’ve used (only having used toners in the past) but I’m definitely converted and I can see that this is an essential step in my skincare routine.

I’ll be on the look out for any product that might be even better than the MISSHA FTE but, in the mean time, I would definitely recommend trying this one out.


The Time Revolution First Treatment Essence is available at StyleKorean for USD$36.03. Click their name to go to their homepage or, alternatively, click the below banner to go to the product page:

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