[REVIEW] LANEIGE Water Bank Essence Ex

Every time I use this essence, I remind myself that I need to review this soon, I need to review this soon, I need to review this soon… But I forget. So on this glorious day, thankfully my brain has bestowed upon me the memory of needing to review this essence. During my time in Hong Kong, when I bought my two tone lipsticks from Laneige, I received a bunch of their Water Bank line samples, and the product in question – Laneige Water Bank Essence_EX. If you’re from NA, and you’re reading this, you might be thinking BUT WAIT. What do you mean Water Bank Essence_EX?? Why EX?Good question. I don’t know either (like actually as I’m writing this, I just thought of that question and realised I can’t answer), and you’re about to find out what it is with me!

Disclaimer: I do not consider myself as a beauty guru/expert, and all sorts that fall under that category. This product was purchased with my own money and I am not being paid to write this. My review, photos, impressions and thoughts are all my own, unless stated otherwise. While this product may or may not have worked for my skin, it may or may not work for yours – remember, your mileage may vary (YMMV)! 
Links: Affiliate links will be marked with an **. I currently do not have any affiliate accounts anywhere yet. 
Total rating out of 5: 4.3

~$150HKD from BONJOUR HK, I remember I bought this when they were having a promotion on their product. that would convert to around $30CAD.

Retails for $310HKD in LANEIGE stores in Hong Kong. yikes.

The Good
  • Highly moisturising, texture is really water-y like – finish is not heavy at all
  • Skin feels soft, right after use
  • If used everyday, skin stays well hydrated, moisturised and smooth – ie. effects are not long-lasting unless you keep using it consistently
The Bad
  • Expensive
  • Only helps with keeping the skin hydrated, and moisturised – no other “additional” properties besides helping with skin’s H2O – hard to justify the price for the benefits you get
Will I buy this again

Probaaably, but I can’t buy it in Canada since its not available yet so I should probably keep my eye out for other essences instead. And it’s also kinda expensive… Ya dig??


About the Laneige Water Bank Essence_EX

Known as one of Laneige’s signature essence‘, the Laneige Water Bank Essence_EX is an essence that ‘awakens natural moisturizing agents in the skin for 24-hour moisturized skin and smoother skin texture.’ (from Laneige.com(SG) region, because that’s the only site from Laneige that I could find that had info on this product)

So..what the heck does the “EX” of the Essence_EX mean?

Well, since they have a Water Bank Line and then a few Water Bank/Other products from other lines that end with _EX, I’m going to guess that its an updated or new and improved version of the old version. Or at least, that’s what I think.. ha ha.. ha. I also read wantasticbeauty to get a little bit of insight about the product and what “EX” meant.

On with the review…

This is the first essence that I have ever tried (literally), so I am no expert at essences or anything in general. I’m simply sharing my thoughts on what I think about this product and how well it does when targeting a specific skin concern (Water Bank = Hydration??).


The essence comes in a GLASS container, with a pump. I was pretty surprised that it was glass?? It’s kinda nice actually, makes it feel like it’s actually good haha. The pump itself is made out of plastic surrounded by this metal-type of lid. You can twist the cap/lid where the pump is on and open the product (which is awesome, because when you can no longer pump out the product, you can scoop it out). ALSO – for me, one pump is enough to cover my entire face.


I love pumps, because they keep your product nice and sanitary (yas, cleanliness)! And the packaging protects the product from getting any external dirties, and germies in it. Also, I only have one bottle of essence.. I wish I had more than one because I’m running out. If you thought I have two, then I tricked you, hehehe..


Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Glycereth-26, Cyclopentasiloxane, Hydrogenated Poly(C6-14 Olefin), Dimethicone, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Tribehenin, Cyclohexasiloxane, Chenopodium Quinoa Seed Extract, Magnesium Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Calcium Chloride, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Tillandsia Usneoides Extract, Ceratonia Siliqua (Carob) Fruit Extract, Dimethiconol, Betaine, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Ethylhexylglycerin, Isopropyl Palmitate, Carrageenan, Phenyl Trimethicone, Propylene Glycol, PCA Dimethicone, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance

From Laneige.com

As always, I ran the above babies through CosDNA, to see what kind of ingredients are there. I typically look at mainly the ones who score high in CosDNA, but let’s also note some GOOD ingredients in here yea??

The good babies that help our skin, and is the reason why we see the effects that we do

The ones that we all need to watch out for… :(

  • Carrageenan, Isopropyl Palmitate -> These are two that scored a 4&5 respectively in Acne, and MAY cause breakouts for your skin, can also cause irritation to skin

Unfortunately, for my sensitive skin friends out there, if you cannot do products with fragrance – this is one of those products. While the scent does smell really nice! Somewhat floral-y, and sweet, it is quite a moderate smell, not mild enough for me to not notice it, but not strong to the point that its overpowering, and overbearing.

How I apply this essence is:
  1. Gently apply with my fingers by spreading it on my face, in a circular motion OR by swiping it from the inside of my face towards my hairline/ears/chin.
  2. Pat skin lightly afterwards
When I apply this essence:

Since my routine is literally max 5 steps on a good day, not including sheet masks, I apply this essence right after I use my toner. That is..assuming that I used a cleanser before my toner of course :)!


At first glance, the essence itself looks a bit creamy, but when you spread it out it actually turns into a super water-like texture.


See, it looks creamy now doesn’t it.. Just take a look at the next photo and be mind-blown by how water-y it becomes. It’s water-y to the point that you can see the texture that you normally see when you put your hand under water.


So that’s why even though I only use one pump, I can manage to spread it all over my face because as you apply and rub into your face it gets more and more watery.


Gifs are such a pain in the butt, but I made one to show y’all just how watery the texture is.. Watch it drip..drip….drip….hehe. So satisfying.


Honestly, I had a little bit of difficulty thinking of how to demonstrate a “before-and-after” photo to show what this essence does, because the results work almost immediately, and only lasts as long as well your next routine. What I mean is that, if you stop using it for one day, your skin will kind of miss it?? and absorb it super fast. BUT what this also means is that the effects aren’t long-lasting and that you need to use this product everyday, and keep up with it, in order to “see” the effects.


The finish is quite nice though, it’s light and not oily at all! Which is what you should expect in a product that promotes moisture and hydration. But sometimes even gels can feel heavy on my face, so its nice that this one is actually quite water-y. BUT I can say that, if you are planning to use this as moisturiser, it is definitely not enough.


Nonetheless, I hope this comparison photo of my hands will suffice. One hand is the one where I applied the essence all over, and the other has nothing on it whatsoever – I did notice that my skin (although my hands) absorbed this essence fairly quickly (thirsty!). And less scaly (gross) and kind of smoother??

In Summary

While this is expensive for an essence, (at least to me – because you’re paying ~$30 for 60mL), it does deliver its promises on hydrating, moisturising and creating a smooth texture for the skin. The one thing that bums me out is the fact that you have to constantly use it in order to keep the results that you have – which means, you have to keep repurchasing it, which means me = no more money :(. Besides that, I really like how it has a light, matte-like finish and doesn’t feel to heavy even after I apply multiple things on top of it. Whatever they added to this “EX” version, must’ve been amazing?? Although I’ve never tried the old one! Oh! The smell is also quite lovely, but…it’s just sooo expensive.

Thanks for reading!

2 thoughts on “[REVIEW] LANEIGE Water Bank Essence Ex

  1. Great post, as always! LANEIGE HMM such prohibitive prices but so good in the outcome! I have a few samples but not if this EX one. I think EX means extra as extra hydrating. I found the meaning through Mizon products, at least this is what I got from two formulas, one (EX) richer than the other one. 😘😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for reading and your kind words! <3 Ahh, maybe ! it's pretty interesting how some have EX and some don't. My only wish is that their products are not so expensive :'( because it's so pricey to have to keep repurchasing the ones i like

      Liked by 1 person

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