This past June, a newly refined formula of Mun Skin No.1 Aknari* was launched. As a fan of the serum, the launch left me doubly excited because first, the formula was upgraded from being partly organic to becoming 100% Ecocert Certified, and second, the size was upgraded without a price increase.
In case you missed my previous review of the product, No. 1 Aknari is a three-ingredient face serum. While the formula is extremely simple and contains a blend of only three (but mighty) plant oils, it has been one of the most effective, beautifying serums for my skin among the ones that I have tried. In addition to my #1 favorite plant oil, Argan, which I love for its balancing, sebum-regulatory properties and the moisturizing, fine-lines smoothing benefits, No. 1 Aknari contains an even more precious plant oil called Pricky Pear Seed Oil (also known as Barbary Fig Oil). Prickly Pear Seed Oil is packed with essential fatty acids. Studies have shown that essential fatty acids effectively improve the skin’s elasticity when applied topically. In particular, this plant oil contains high levels of linoleic acid, an unsaturated fatty acid that has shown to have a whitening effect on hyperpigmented skin. Prickly Pear Seed Oil is one of the most expensive plant oils in the world, as its production requires intensive manual labor. The third ingredient, Rose Oil is known to have antioxidant properties, and also gives an intoxicating, soothing scent to the serum that I personally love.
The texture of the serum does not feel overly rich on the skin, (Prickly Pear Seed Oil and Argan Oil both have a medium viscosity), and it absorbs well into the skin. As with any other face oils/serums I like to apply No. 1 Aknari after cleansing and toning, while my skin is still damp from using my toner. I only warm up a few drops of the serum into my hands and then I press it into my skin until all my face has received some product. It leaves the skin looking dewy, healthy and feeling silky to the touch. I also like to use it around my eyes, gently patting it on my under-eye area, as it seems to keep the fine lines around my eyes smooth and more fresh-looking.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, two weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting Munemi Imai, founder of Mun Skin, at A Night For Green Beauty in Los Angeles, where she introduced me to her MUN toner (launching soon!!). Munemi applied the toner to my skin with a cotton round and then massaged one drop of serum into it. Let me tell you, the feel and scent are amazing. The toner is meant to be not only hydrating, but also a gentle exfoliating product that refines the texture of the skin, preparing it for the serum. It will be available in a few months, so keep your eyes peeled. If you are already a No. 1 Aknari lover, you will definitely appreciate how the two products work together.
Personally, I consider No. 1 Aknari my “upgrade” from Argan Oil. Pure Argan Oil has been working great for my skin, but the two additional ingredients contained in the Mun serum inevitably add extra benefits, such as the Prickly Pear Seed Oil’s brightening properties. As someone who suffers from dark spots, I have tried a few products to lighten them, but have not had impressive results. While No. 1 Aknari is not labeled as a lightening product, it is probably the only one I have tried that seems to have slightly helped my skin with looking overall brighter. I think that constant use (probably a few months), could give more noticeable results, especially if used in combination with products that gently exfoliate. That is why I am so excited about the toner, as it is going to be a gentle exfoliating/refining product.
Because the oils included in the blend are so expensive, this serum is not cheap, ($ 95 from Mun Skin or Spirit Beauty Lounge). If it fits your budget, it’s worth trying. If not, you could order a sample and see why you should save up for it. Although I was gifted with a sample of the serum with the new formula, I have happily spent the money on this product in the past because I truly love it. I also think that most skin types would benefit from it in the same way that my skin has, because it is non-greasy, but very moisturizing.