Huygens Singapore: A French Apothecary In The Lion City | Clozette


Once upon a time, the French woman’s go-to shopping destination was her local apothecary. Whether it was a balm for headaches or a special draft to help her sleep better, the apothecary was a one-stop shop for cures designed to address every concern. These days, women turn to the pharmacy for pre-formulated solutions to our problems. Still, the old-world charm of the apothecary with its offering of personalised blends remains attractive. Such is the appeal of Huygens, a French beauty apothecary that launched recently at Isetan Scotts in Singapore.




Founded in 2013 by Daan Sins and Sebastian Guerra, Huygens is an up-and-coming French brand committed to creating the next generation of organic cosmetics that are 100% clean and cruelty-free. Their line-up of beauty products encompasses a wide range, covering fragrance, skincare, home aromatherapy, and even bespoke hair and body care formulas for that extra-special touch.


Clean beauty at Huygens Singapore


Clean beauty aficionados will be delighted by Huygens’s skincare products that are formulated without parabens, pegs, endocrine disruptors, mineral oil, silicones, Phenoxyethanol, and nanoparticles. Their fragrances, meanwhile, are created with flower water, organic alcohol, and natural ingredients. Their home aromatherapy range boasts of 15 high-quality essential oil blends, all of which are created under the direction of a perfumer and an aromatherapist for maximum effect.



Last but definitely not least are the bespoke hair and body care products, which are formulated with essential oil blends. You can personalise them according to your personal preference and the benefits you desire. The process is fairly simple: first, choose a scent among 15 essential oils, then select the base according to the product you need. Options for bases include oils, shampoo and conditioner, washes, lotions, and scrubs.


Huygens Body Lotion


When you’re ready, the Huygens Singapore staff will prepare your special blend for you. Pictured above is a custom-made Huygens body lotion with a Rosier scent consisting of Damask Rose, Rose Geranium, and Lavender. Whatever your preference, you’ll be spoiled for choice finding your perfect blend at Huygens Singapore. Now you can bask in a luxurious and guilt-free experience when you take home one of these products.


(Cover photo from: @huygensparis)


Visit the Huygens Boutique at Isetan Scotts Level 1.

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Almost every aspect of mainstream media today talks about inclusivity and diversity. Even the beauty industry, which previously thrived in having one ideal standard, learned to adjust and cater to a wider and more 'realistic' set of audiences. Here in the East, however, it seems like there is still a struggle in overcoming unrealistic beauty standards.


Just a couple of months ago, we reported on South Korean women destroying their makeup in protest against their society's prejudicial expectations on beauty. Then, just last month in the Philippines, two ads for whitening brands were slammed for the messaging that naturally tanned skin is much more inferior to lighter skin. This makes us wonder: is it now time for us to finally discuss skin brightening versus bleaching and its bigger implications on the Asian perception of beauty?


Skin Brightening Versus Bleaching:  Pros and cons


Now, in all honesty, we believe that your beauty choices belong to you. If you love brightening products or take treatments to achieve your dream skin, you do you. If you've journeyed far (literally or emotionally) on accepting your own raw and natural beauty, you do you. After all, beauty should be empowering. However, it is also worth noting that there is a difference between wanting to be your best 'you' and actually endangering yourself in an unending pursuit to getting 'the perfect look'. 


Beauty as a status symbol


In a YouTube documentary done by Refinery29, countries in Asia are the biggest markets when it comes to skin whitening products. The Philippines, specifically, holds the majority of the record when it comes to sales. World-renowned cosmetic dermatologist and beauty personality Dr. Vicky Belo said that this is because having lighter skin is comparable to "owning a Hermes bag." It's a status symbol that can change the game for an individual. This is why procedures — including famous glutathione treatments — have grown in demand since 2016. 


Skin Brightening Versus Bleaching:  Status symbol


Skin brightening versus bleaching: what's the difference?


Speaking of glutathione treatments, they can refer to a procedure done by injecting the antioxidant glutathione along with Vitamin C directly to the patient via an IV drip. This is done to facilitate brightening effects from within the body. It was explained that while, at the moment, only glutathione capsules are FDA-approved (not the injectables), it's said to still be a lot safer than relying on products and procedures without any medical supervision or recommendation. 


This is because glutathione is already an antioxidant found in our cells, composed of various amino acids. Some of its advantages include assisting in regenerating vitamins C and E, helping the liver and gallbladder break down fats, deal with free radicals, and many more. And getting a boost of it through medically issued treatments or certified capsules bought over-the-counter is quite comparable to how and why we take vitamin pills daily — just with a heftier price tag considering its high demand. On a larger scale, brightening is just a side effect of its natural functions within the body. It's neither forced nor is made for the sole purpose of just lightening the skin. 


Skin Brightening Versus Bleaching: Facts and dangers


The same principles apply to beauty products that are backed by medical research and are approved for distribution after undergoing certain safety standards. These products talk more about cell regeneration, rejuvenation, and repair than just 'getting whiter in x number of days'. Usually, it also discusses its ingredients in detail and how that can result in possible skin brightening effects. Vitamin C, kojic acid, and glycolic acid are just some of the ingredients familiar to us. Again, similar to the glutathione scenario, brightening is merely a side-effect.



On the other hand, skin bleaching products are a lot sketchier. Aside from skin whitening being its only known feature, it's also usually sold outside of beauty counters or drugstores and typically come with a very cheap price tag. This is because aside from lacking the proper lab testings and medical approvals, it also uses a more inexpensive yet deadly ingredient to deliver skin lightening: mercury. This chemical has been proven to be lethal in the smallest dosage and can cause skin cancer, blood poisoning, and even cause danger to your future pregnancies. 


In hindsight, it's clear why skin bleaching, in contrast to brightening, draws in many people. Brightening procedures and products can be quite the investment and the accessibility and affordability of skin bleaching products have become its leverage. But vanity aside, there's also one more thing to consider about why skin bleaching is such an appealing option.


Skin Brightening Versus Bleaching: Products and treatments


Historically, Asian countries have favoured those with lighter skin, especially since the hue of the complexion used to define societal hierarchy. In fact, this still translates today. Whether in mainstream media, pop culture or just in daily life, skin colour is a factor in setting first impressions. This makes a quick and more affordable approach to lightening one's skin — despite its dangers — look like a clear escape route to make the odds work for one's favour. And for something that has been embedded in our cultures for hundreds of years, it is clear why it's still difficult to shift perceptions on the matter even when the other side of the world is already particularly vocal about it.


Asia's slow but steady approach to shifting beauty perceptions


There's no denying that there is still a lot to be challenged when it comes to Eastern beauty standards. Still, it's interesting to see that some brands and personalities are finally taking the lead in changing this landscape. In the past year, there has been a notable shift on how Asian ads have been geared towards promoting self-confidence and taking charge of your own definition of beauty rather than the simple message of deep versus light skin. There are still blunders along the way, but hey, that's a vital step in learning. 


Skin Brightening Versus Bleaching: Changing the narrative


People are also becoming more cautious of beauty ingredients and terminologies. This results in skin brightening being treated more like a potential side-effect than an end goal. What's good about this is that we are learning not to antagonise brightening while still not being dismissive of our own natural beauty. Of course, the lows on societal perception of beauty is still yet to be overturned on a large scale. But if each of us learns to accept our beauty as our own and to prioritise our health should, then we are definitely on the right path to fixing this narrative. 


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One of the first parts to show signs of ageing is the delicate eye area. The thin skin around the eyes makes it more susceptible to damage causing problems such as puffiness, dark circles, fine lines, and wrinkles. Fine lines are no strangers to our Digital Media Manager, Vicky Wong. who was invited to try out the  After trying various eye creams and lifting serums in the market, she was still hard-pressed to find the one which would effectively reduce them. So she was open to experiencing Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift and to test the Wide Focus Eye Cream. Hearing that the treatment suggested a lifting effect on the eye area, it inevitably caught her interest. How is it different from other treatments in the market? Let's find out. 


Browhaus SG


Unlike most professional eye lift treatments, the Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift is a non-invasive procedure that doesn’t require any downtime. It uses a plasma jet to treat the eye area in three ways. First, ionised gas particles from plasma purify and sterilise the skin. Next, it primes the skin for better absorption. Finally, it stimulates collagen and elastin-production resulting in a visibly lifted, firm, and smooth eye area. Moreover, the treatment also improves circulation and strengthens the skin’s defence against signs of ageing.


Meanwhile, the Browhaus Wide Focus Eye Cream is a multi-purpose eye and lip treatment product. Created with Nanomax® technology, the cream contains a powerful antioxidant blend of Coenzyme Q10 and vitamins C and E to nourish cells and protect the skin. In addition, it features active ingredients Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract, Liposome Soy Isoflavones, and Olive Squalane to strengthen, brighten, and moisturise skin respectively. If this all seems promising, read on to learn what Vicky has to say about the experience.


First Impressions on the Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift and Pre-Procedure Prep


Browhaus Counter


Vicky came to the session without any former experience with other treatments. The reason for this, she shares, was that she was initially sceptical about beauty treatments because of their consequences and downtime. Nevertheless, she received a hospitable welcome at Browhaus.


Browhaus Eye Lift Machine


Prior to the procedure, the therapist also showed Vicky the device she’ll be using and explained that the procedure will take around 20 minutes for each side of the eye.




The Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift Procedure and Thoughts on the Wide Focus Eye Cream


Browhaus’s Plasma Eye Lift Procedure was refreshingly simple. Vicky explains, “For the first step, the therapist used a jet applicator to purify and sterilise the skin area around my eyes before she proceeded to the second step where she used the spot applicator for lifting and reducing wrinkles and fine lines.” Was there any discomfort involved? Vicky says, “My therapist pre-empted me that I would experience slight heat when the spot applicator was used, and I did feel it but it didn't cause any discomfort for me. The pulsations were quite tiny and the overall process was a pleasant one.”


Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift


For an experience that was both quick and painless, the results were actually quite surprising. Vicky shares, “The therapist showed me the photos taken before and after treatment, and I was pretty impressed that a single treatment actually brightened my eyes with a visible firming effect in my eye area.”



Browhaus Eye Lift


To optimise the results of the procedure, Vicky was also asked to try out Browhaus’s eye cream. After trying dozens of high-end and drugstore options, what can she say about the Wide Focus Eye Cream? “The packaging is really colourful and cute, which totally brightens up my mood like how the treatment brightens up my eyes. Using the round spatula to apply the cream around my eye zone, it also helps to massage the cream onto my skin and increase blood circulation. The cream is quite nourishing and I even applied it on my chapped lips as lip treatment.”


Overall Thoughts


All in all, the experience was very pleasant. “Although the price is slightly on the high side, I don’t mind trying it again since the outcome is so convincing.” Those who struggle with stubborn fine lines and wrinkles might consider the Browhaus Plasma Eye Lift as an alternative option to more intensive, surgical procedures. At SGD600 per session, it’s quite pricey though considerably cheaper than going under the knife. Still, it’s a good choice for a quick and pain-free treatment with fast results. For those who are looking for a serious eye cream that’ll maintain the health of their eye area, the Wide Focus Cream at SGD158 is a good option.


Find out more about Browhaus treatments here.

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