Brace yourselves, skincare fans: there’s a new multi-brand store in town, housing all your beauty favorites, from local brands to international labels!
The Istana is a beauty and skincare boutique that recently opened at Level 2 of Gateway Mall in Araneta Center, Cubao, Quezon City. It’s a store that caters to beauty and skincare addicts, plus more: it even has its own in-store Professional Skin Analyzer that studies your skin type, as well as other skin concerns to help you plan the best beauty regimen for your face. Customers are free to walk in and get their skin analyzed without charge!
With a bright and airy ambiance, your attention immediately draws to the shelves of products neatly arrayed: there’s a shelf dedicated to Sooper Beaute, the local brand known for its best-selling serum. Other local brands beauty fans will recognize include Snoe Beauty and Ellana Mineral Cosmetics. The boutique is also home to other cult favorites around Asia, including Some By Mi, as well as Korean brands 23 Years Old and Banobagi. In fact, The Istana is the first store in the Philippines to carry these Korean brands!
Other brands customers can get ahold of include Malaysian labels Snow Fairy and Breena Beauty, as well as 1028, a cosmetic label from Taiwan raved about by beauty junkies all over the region.
As seen by its diverse array of products, The Istana aims to cater to beauty lovers of different ages. V-Magic, The Istana’s flagship brand, offers a more premium line of skincare and beauty products infused with bio-technology that primarily targets anti-aging concerns. It’s in the corner of V-Magic where we were acquainted with the Professional Skin Analyzer, a machine that is able to identify an individual’s skin concerns, including one’s skin type — something that more people have trouble recognizing than they realize.
In my case, I was always under the impression that I had combination-type skin — dry in some areas, oily in other spots such as the T-zone. From the test, I discovered that I actually had an oily skin type, and the dry spots were because I lacked moisture in my skin; in other words, I was dehydrated.
This step was crucial in figuring out how to change my beauty regimen, including replacing my current cleanser for another product that would help me target the overproduction of sebum on my face.
After the test, I was treated to a facial by Jones Hu, The Istana’s chief aesthetician from Malaysia, who taught me how to properly apply products on my face, as well as give it a massage to activate lymphatic and toxin drainage, resulting in a more lifted appearance. According to Jones, the massage should generally start from the center of the face, working your way outwards to the sides and temples. To facilitate the massage, she used a serum infused with hyaluronic acid, to give my parched skin that much-needed boost in hydration.
“The idea behind The Istana is to make these regionally known products available here in Manila, and the analyzer is supposed to help you be more mindful and aware of your own skin. After the test, customers can browse through our shelves of products or be given recommendations on the ideal products for their own self-care”, according to Kim Tiu Selorio, Managing Director of The Istana.
In case you needed another reason for a weekend beauty haul, head on over to The Istana.