Tatcha is a luxury skincare brand that is beloved by many for its high-quality and effective skincare products. The Essence is one of Tatcha’s most popular products and is a highly concentrated brightening essence that is formulated to make your skincare products more effective.
So, is there a Tatcha Essence dupe?
I’ve researched and tested multiple products, and due to the unique ingredients and formulation of The Essence, I haven’t been able to find an exact dupe. However, there are some alternative products that provide similar skincare benefits and will save you quite a bit of money.
Before we get into the alternatives to The Essence, let’s take a look at what makes this product so special and hard to copy.
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Tatcha The Essence
What makes Tatcha The Essence so hard to duplicate is the fact that it contains 100% Hadasei-3, Tatcha’s proprietary blend of three powerful Japanese superfoods (rice, green tea, and algae).
This blend is what gives The Essence its unique brightening and resurfacing properties that prime the skin for improved product performance.
What is An Essence?
An essence is a lightweight water-based skincare product that is applied to the skin after cleansing and toning. It preps the skin for the rest of your skincare routine by delivering active ingredients deep into the skin.
Essences typically have a slightly thicker texture than toners and are more concentrated. They also usually have a higher percentage of active ingredients than toners. Depending on the formula, they could contain beneficial ingredients like antioxidants, hydrating actives, or exfoliating acids like glycolic acid.
Tatcha The Essence Key Ingredients
Akita rice is fermented with a specific strain of yeast that produces less alcohol. This fermented duo allows nutrients to better penetrate the skin.
Uji green tea in The Essence is rich in antioxidants like Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG). This potent antioxidant contains polyphenols that can help protect the skin from damage.
The final ingredient in Hadasei-3, Okinawa Red Algae, also known as Betaphycus gelatinum, is a hydrating active that contains polysaccharides, which are known for their ability to help the skin retain moisture and support a healthy skin barrier.
The combination of these three powerful ingredients makes The Essence a very unique and effective Tatcha product.
Tatcha’s green tea undergoes a patented sonic-extraction process that yields an extract that Tatcha says is 12 times more potent than green tea extracted using conventional methods.
A double fermentation process yields beneficial ingredients like amino acids and lactic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that gently removes dead skin cells and exfoliates the skin to improve uneven texture and reduce the look of wrinkles and fine lines.
The Essence is suitable for all skin, even if you have a sensitive skin type. Fragrance-free.
Tatcha The Essence Ingredient List: Saccharomyces/Rice Ferment Filtrate, Propanediol (Solvent/Moisturizer), Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Cladosiphon Okamuranus Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin (preservative), Phenoxyethanol (preservative).
Is There A Tatcha Essence Dupe?
While I wouldn’t call these essences exact Tatcha dupes, I do think they are excellent affordable alternatives that provide similar skin benefits. They don’t contain the same exact ingredients as The Essence, but they are formulated to provide similar benefits, all without breaking the bank.
Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence
Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence is a naturally fermented essence that preps your skin for the rest of your skin care routine. It contains a 93% concentration of Neogen’s Micro Bio Ferment Complex to nourish and replenish the skin.
This Korean essence offers many of the same benefits as The Essence: it hydrates the skin, improves moisture, protects against irritants, firms the skin, and strengthens the skin barrier.
Due to the strong antioxidant and fermented ingredient concentration, I choose Neogen Dermalogy Real Ferment Micro Essence as the closest dupe for Tatcha The Essence.
The essence is formulated with fermented ingredients similar to The Essence:
- Bifida Ferment Lysate: A probiotic that helps soothe and protect the skin while boosting moisture levels. Also helps improve skin elasticity.
- Saccharomyces Ferment Filtrate: Obtained by fermenting yeast, this active ingredient contains vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that moisturize and soothe the skin and improve skin elasticity.
- Rice Ferment Filtrate (Sake): Like Tatcha, this essence contains rice ferment filtrate, which is a fermented version of rice that helps improve the skin’s moisture levels.
- Aspergillus Ferment: This fermented ingredient helps improve the skin’s overall appearance by brightening and evening skin tone and balancing oil and moisture levels.
Like Tatcha, Real Ferment Micro Essence 93% also contains Camellia sinensis leaf extract (green tea) and betaula alba juice, which are powerful antioxidants.
Other ingredients include sodium hyaluronate, a form of hyaluronic acid that is naturally occurring in our bodies. It’s what gives our skin elasticity and hydration. Niacinamide is a multi-benefit ingredient that brightens skin, improves uneven skin tone, and diminishes the appearance of pores.
This essence also contains multiple amino acids that work to repair the skin barrier by providing moisture.
The essence looks like water and feels silky but not sticky on your skin. It is fragrance-free and comes in a 5.7 oz glass bottle.
Tonymoly The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Essence
While Tatcha’s The Essence concentrates on three actives, the focus of Tonymoly The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Essence is only one: green tea extract. The essence contains 81% Korean green tea called ‘ChungTaeJeon’ that is fermented over 365 days using sunlight.
This fermented green tea contains a higher antioxidant content than fresh green tea, so it’s more effective at protecting the skin against environmental stressors that cause visible aging of the skin. It also provides moisture to replenish the skin.
The essence also contains lemon seed oil which has antifungal and antibacterial properties, and rosewood oil, which soothes and calms the skin.
The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Essence does not have the typical consistency of a watery essence. It comes with a pump and has a light lotion texture which feels like a lightweight serum when applied to the skin. Once absorbed, it feels lightweight and refreshing on the skin.
There is no added fragrance, but you may notice a light scent from the green tea and essential oils.
This essence is pricier ounce for ounce than the other Tatcha essence dupes, as it comes in a smaller 1.86 oz (55ml) plastic bottle.
Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence Rose Edition
Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence Rose Edition is formulated with 94% galactomyces ferment filtrate and rosewater to target wrinkles and fine lines and clarify your complexion.
It helps improve skin elasticity, firmness, and uneven skin texture.
Galactomyces ferment filtrate, also known as Pitera, is the star ingredient in this essence and is also found in the best-selling SK-II Facial Treatment Essence (see more on this SK-II in the note below).
Galactomyces ferment filtrate is created by fermenting yeast and is rich in vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other compounds that help to brighten the skin. It also helps to reduce skin pigmentation, hydrate, and soothe the skin while offering skin protective antioxidant benefits.
The addition of rosewater in this Korean essence nourishes the skin while also providing hydration.
Niacinamide is another key ingredient that brightens the skin, evens out skin tone, and reduces the appearance of pores. Adenosine is an anti-inflammatory that supports a healthy skin barrier and collagen production for firmer skin.
The rose version of Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence contains 94% galactomyces ferment filtrate vs 90% galactomyces ferment filtrate in the original Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence.
While it doesn’t contain Tatcha’s trio of fermented green tea, rice, and algae extracts, this essence provides a very similar benefit to Tatcha’s The Essence, thanks to fermented active galactomyces ferment filtrate.
It does a great job of hydrating the skin, making it a great choice for those with dehydrated and dry skin.
Even though there is rosewater in the formula, it doesn’t have much scent. It has a lightweight watery texture that sinks into the skin quickly without leaving it sticky or greasy. This essence comes in a 5.07 oz. glass bottle.
NOTE: SK-II Facial Treatment Essence is often discussed as an alternative to Tatcha The Essence. While it is an iconic product that improves the look of the visible signs of aging, it is even more expensive than Tatcha.
I have excluded it from this discussion of alternatives, as the focus is on affordable skincare, but if price is not an issue, it would be an excellent alternative to Tatcha.
How To Use An Essence
Apply an essence after cleansing and toning your skin in your AM and/or PM skincare routine.
After cleansing your face, dispense the essence into the palm of your hand. Gently press/pat it into the skin on your face and neck using your palm and fingertips. Alternately, you can soak a thin cotton pad and swipe it over your face and neck.
Depending on the formula, you may want to apply another layer of essence for added benefits.
Once the essence is absorbed, follow up with your favorite serums and/or treatments and moisturizer. And don’t forget to apply sunscreen in your AM skincare routine to protect your skin from the sun’s UV rays.
Related Post: Tatcha The Liquid Silk Canvas Review
Final Thoughts on Tatcha Essence Dupes
While these affordable beauty products may not be exact dupes for Tatcha The Essence, they are definitely worthy alternatives that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
All three alternatives contain fermented ingredients that offer similar skincare benefits to Tatcha The Essence. In particular, they help to hydrate and brighten the skin while also providing antioxidant benefits.
Thanks for reading!