Review: Illi Total Aging Care Body Lotion, I Kinda Hate You But It's Not Your Fault

I've been putting off this review for ... months.  I actually purchased this product in the fall, yet we're heading into the final months of winter and I've yet to review it.  I knew when I purchased it that it was probably a bad idea, but I persisted anyway because this was going to be my First Real Winter In Eight Years, and I had to be prepared. #enablinglogic

I kept procrastinating, hoping as the weather worsened, I'd suddenly find myself in love with a product I didn't really like.  Worse, it's not even a problem with this specific lotion, which is actually quite nice, nice enough that I've managed to use it once or twice a month since I got it.

Illi Total Aging Care Body Lotion Review
I was so pleased when I managed to find the empty box, as I'd stashed it somewhere 'safe'.
No, the problem is not with this specific lotion, the problem is that it's a lotion.  A body lotion.  I hate body lotions.  I actually hate lotions in general- hand, foot, or body lotions.  I'm actually sort of twitching a little just writing that sentence.  Why do I have an aversion to slathering cold, slimy, oily, thick, greasy lotion all over my skin? Ah, wait, that might be it.

In this post:

  • Product details
  • Ingredients list
  • What I like about it
  • What I don't like about it

I admit that the primary motivator of doing this review now, aside from the fact that it's good to have a mix of positive and negative reviews, is once I've reviewed this I can finally destash it to a friend who loves this stuff and goes through it quickly.

I know, intellectually, that it's a good product for body lotion fans- I even suggested it as a full-size hanbang option in my post Hanbang for the Holidays Gift Guide II: Full Sized & Wallet Friendly because I knew other people love it.  But I've come to the conclusion that it just doesn't suit me, so it's time for me to review this and send it off to its new home.

Just as a quick reminder: this blog uses both affiliate and non-affiliate links, and if you choose to click the fomer before you shop, your purchase may contribute a tiny amount to the maintenance of this blog.  See full details at the end of this post! #receipts

Product details

Full product name: Illi Total Aging Care Body Lotion
Purpose: A body lotion.  I'm not sure what else to say about it.  The blurb from InsiderBeauty says:
This luxurious, restorative body lotion deeply moisturizes and restores skin to suppleness. Enriched with camelia[sic] oil, green tea extract, and ginseng extract, it provides long-lasting nourishment to the driest parts of your body and preserves your natural moisture reserves. Your body will feel velvety soft and smooth while the texture of your skin will look visibly firmer and more toned.
Is it any wonder that I was lured away from my body-lotion-hating corner, like a moth to a hanbang flame?  I should have paused at "driest parts of your body" but I was too clouded with lust over "camellia oil, green tea extract, and ginseng extract" to think straight.  Mea culpa.
Scent: Strongly floral with a hint of herbs.  It's fairly potent, so if you don't do well with fragrances, stay away.  If you enjoy having pretty-smelling limbs after a shower, this will be a plus.
Texture: A thick, emollient lotion that spreads easily and sinks in fairly well considering that it's a heavy body lotion.  Seriously, what was I thinking?  Was "aging" and "dry skin" not a clue that this was not the right product for me?  *slaps self from the past*
Quantity:  Defying the laws of physics, an endless amount that never depletes despite my efforts to use it up.  The bottle claims it's 350ml.  I am suspicious.
Rating:  On a scale of "negative 10 to tolerable", which is what body lotions are measured by, I give it a "can handle it if my skin feels like it's going to crack and fall off, but otherwise please no" which is probably the highest rating I've ever given a body lotion.  If I can stand to apply it and let it sink it, it leaves my skin softened and smoothed for a few hours, which would be find if it wasn't for that "something feels weird and different" sensation of my skin that creeps me out.
Where to get it:  I purchased mine from Insider Beauty (retail $32 + 10% off first order so it's $28-ish? With free shipping over $35) but both versions are available on Amazon for $27ish, or eBay from $21-$28, shipped from Korea.  The Fresh Moisture and Intensive Moisture come in a 100ml lotion + 500ml body wash (untried) set on Sasa for $17 before shipping.
Repurchase:  Oh snail, no.  Well, actually that's not quite true, if I had a friend or family member who had dry skin and/or liked body lotions, it would be something I'd put in their care package, but for me, nope.

Illi Total Aging Care Body Lotion review
One pump of the lotion at left, post-slather-and-rubbed-in at right.
One pump is enough for both arms, so this was redistributed everywhere other than on my right hand, so I could measure the difference over a few hours.  I am sure dry skin folks would want to use more, but I try to minimize the feeling of "ugh there is lotion all over me."

Ingredients list

According to InsiderBeauty's product page, the ingredients are:
Purified water, Butylene glycol, Glycerin, Cetyl ethylhexanoate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Shea butter, Cyclohexanone siloxane, Cetearyl alcohol, Ginseng extract, Green tea extract, Camellia seed oil/hydrogenated camellia seed oil esters, Natto gum, Magnolia bark extract, Cocoa extract, Glyceryl stearate, PEG-40 stearate, Polysorbate 20, Stearic acid, Palmitic acid, PEG-100 stearate, Polyacrylate-13, Polyisobutene, Xanthan gum, Glyceryl caprylate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Adenosine, Dextrin, PEG-40/HDI Copolymer bis-decyltetradeceth-20 ether, Poloxamer 235, Epigallocatechin gallate, Ethoxydiglycol, Tocophersolan, Poloxamer 338, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance
I ran this product through Cosdna, and nothing scored above a 2, but it does contain stearic acid and palmitic acid, which are problematic for some people, although according to wikipedia, palmitic acid can also be found in soybeans and other sources-- but the most likely source is palm oil.

Illi Total Aging Care Body Lotion Review
Be warned that once you twist up/pop up the cap, it won't fit back into the original box.
While there are a lot of pretty extracts in this product, Korean ingredients list order laws aren't the same, so they are more likely to be closer to the bottom of the list if they were to be re-ordered by concentration.  This product is also chock full of silicones, moisturizers, and emollients, but the silicone-y feel is definitely noticeable for me.  Why I have such an aversion to slathering things on my body when I love to slather my face, I just don't know.

What I like about it

I like the scent, I like the star ingredients (they are hanbangin', after all) and I like that it's an intensely moisturizing product that is relatively light considering that it is a heavy moisturizing product.  As far as heavy moisturizers go, this one is pretty painless.  It has nice packaging, with a sturdy bottle that isn't top heavy.  The brand, Illi, is a Hanbang (traditional Korean herbal medicine) line/sub-brand from Amore Pacific, and has an affordable price point compared to, say, Sulwhasoo.

It's "nice for a body lotion" experience was encouraging enough for me to try to hunt down the 'Fresh' version, which fellow Snailcaster Tracy of Fanserviced-b assures me is a good option for people who don't like body lotion.  I do occasionally get a bit of dry skin after I shower, but certainly nothing like the suffering that some people deal with year-round, let alone winter.

So, I get that I can't really blame this product for not being something that I enjoy using, because it's like ordering a plate of sauteed spinach at a fine restaurant when you know you hate spinach, hoping the hands of a master chef will be able to transform it into something that you like.  Except I love spinach.  Just not body lotion.

What I don't like about it

It's a body lotion.  It's also expensive, especially if you are the sort of person who needs a large volume of product to keep your skin happy in the winter.  The fragrance may also be too much for some people, although it's not noticeable after application unless I bring my arm up to my face for a sniff.  (I do this.)

It's also hard for me to judge how moisturizing it is, because I don't suffer from noticeable skin dryness on my body.  So I decided to break out the little digital skin analyzer from Amazon I bought months ago, which measures the oil, water, and 'roughness' ratio of your skin.  Take that with a huge grain of salt.  Still, it's a fun little toy!

Digital skin analyzer
The red screen and sad face is judging me.
Results before applying lotion:
  • Oil: 14.2%
  • Water: 31.6%
  • Skin Texture: Rough

I noticed that after a few hours, the sleek texture of my skin was still present due to the silicones, but the oil/water/roughness state was nearly the same as the hand which I had not applied any product to at all.  That leads me to believe that the primary 'feeling' of hydration is actually not hydration, it's just the silicones at work, doing their surface-smoothing thing.

Digital skin analyzer
The green screen and happy face approve of this result, it seems.
Results after applying lotion:
  • Oil: 18.8%
  • Water: 41.8%
  • Skin Texture: Smooth

So there's an immediate improvement, but it's a surprisingly small amount.  Ok, well what about "long-lasting nourishment to the driest parts of your body and preserves your natural moisture reserves" then?  So, I kept testing throughout the day as I wrote this post.

About 4 hours later, my results on my left (lotioned hand) were:
  • Oil: 13.5%
  • Water: 30.2%
  • Skin Texture: Rough

Right hand, un-lotioned:
  • Oil: 13.2%
  • Water: 29.4%
  • Skin Texture: Rough

Compared to my right hand, without any lotion, there's almost no difference in how moisturized my skin is.  This might be a testament to how much I don't need lotion, maybe?  I can still feel the artificial smoothness of the silicones on my left hand though, but other than that, there's no difference.

Mostly though, my issues with this are the same issues I have with any and all body lotions.  I hate the feeling of anything greasy or oily on my skin, I don't like slipping and sliding on my floor or furniture if I've applied it to limbs or hands, and I hate the feeling of greasy hands and fingers.  If a product absorbs in the 5 second walk from my bathroom to my living room, ok, we're on.  This product does sink in within a few minutes, but that's just a few minutes too many for me.

Are you someone who also can't stand body lotions, oils, and creams? Hit me up on Facebook or Twitter and let me know!

Have something you'd like to share with me?  Snap a pic and tag me on Instagram at @snowwhiteandtheasianpear because I'd love to see it!

All the best,

**Disclaimer: All products reviewed/mentioned in my blog, are 100% purchased with my own money, with a single exception of a press sample I reviewed in 2015 which swore me off of them forever.  This blog contains  both affiliate and non-affiliate links, and clicking the former before you shop means that this blog will receive a small commission to assist in this blog supporting itself.  Please see my Contact Info & Disclaimer policy for more information.


  1. Brilliant review as always! Try the palmers body lotion spray if you feel you need it, I keep it on the shower, towel off and spray you barely have to rub it and by the time you've stepped out to get your clothes it's absorbed, no slime no yuck - I recommended it to my niece who's on the spectrum and can't deal with the feeling usually and she's getting on with it too! Xxxx

  2. Preach it sister. I could do with using body lotion more regularly but come on. Life is too short and deserves to be lived grease-free. ;)

  3. Omg, that skin analyzer! Since I found out about your blog a month ago, I got into the Rabbit hole, and my skin couldnt be happier. Seriously, im excited every sinday and monday to see if a new blog is up :)
    Keep doing what you are doing nothing despite some negativity, you are helping a lot of people!
    (Ps, sulwhasoo foaming cleanser is da bomb diggity!!)

    Kind regards,
    From the Netherlands :)

  4. Unng, that is my HG body lotion! lol But, I buy it for about $17+shipping when I pick up other items for a small haul. Funny enough, my daughter has always had a huge aversion to lotions as well. I think I created the problem by forcing sunscreen on her all the time as a toddler :)

  5. Another lotion hater here. I will use unscented hand lotion, but just because the hand soap at work dries them out like leather. And that hand lotion has to sink in fast or it is tossed immediately. I have discovered this winter that if I use Dove Unscented bar soap that I am not as dry and flaky. Thank you Dove Unscented! You tell people you don't like putting on lotions and they look at you like you have lost your mind. Nice to see other non-lotioners!

  6. I absolutely hate body and hand lotions. You can't touch anything because you'll leave fingerprints everywhere and the clothes will stick to your skin like a magnet. It's just a really unpleasant experience but sometimes there's just no way around it. Weirdly though I have no problem with moisturizing my face.

  7. You can try tocca's "hand milk". It's a water based "moisturizer"

  8. I hear ya, Cat. Glad you wrote the review, so you can get that out of your house. I've only found a few body lotions I like, and they only get used in months where sleeves and pants are not an option. Personally, I'd rather use any leftover essence from the previous night's sheet mask than a lotion. Alas, hand cream (emphasis on cream) is a must, and the Tony Moly Panda's Dream White Hand Cream is getting that job done. Looking forward to your next post and the next Snailcast as well. On to better things, pretty lady!

  9. I hate lotions, too. Hate hate hate. I started using hazelnut oil before I go to bed and wake up with the softest legs ever. It sinks in so well. My legs have never looked better.

  10. Glad I am not the only one who suffers from this! I actually was in Nature Republic the other day (first time going into the store despite numerous purchases of their face cream...behold the power of Amazon prime...) and I picked up their Aloe gel. I've been forcing myself to use it as body lotion and it dries super fast. Like I slather it on after showering and then before I'm even dressed it's totally dry. It also doesn't leave behind the grease trail that regular lotion does. I don't actually know how hydrating it is (despite owning a skin analyzer, I've never tested it) but it does help my conscious about neglecting the rest of my body >_<. It was $6 something for 300ml and if you bought two, you got a 3rd for free. You can subscribe to it on Amazon as well, which I will totally be doing as soon as my stock runs out

    1. I used to use the Nature Republic, actually! It was one of my first ever reviews, waaaay back in the day. :)