EMPTIES | Skincare, June 2018

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I’m a little overwhelmed, tbh

Given that it’s been a good six months since my last empties post, I have accumulated a ton of empties to share with y’all. Although I’ve been slacking in posting regularly, I managed to lug my empties with me from my previous apartment when I moved in March! I was committed to saving my trash and posting a really satisfying empties.

I was so committed, in fact, that I have too many empties to talk about and will have to split this post in two. This first one will be on my skincare empties, and the next one will be on everything else!

Also, as I mentioned in the first post of my cruelty-free journey series, I’m trying to use up my non-cruelty-free products, so you’ll see a lot of those here. Since I am moving towards a cruelty-free lifestyle, I will not be including any of the usual product information that I include (links, price, size) with the non-cruelty-free products.

Skincare

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Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial (1.35 oz, $48): This was a pretty decent daily nighttime moisturizer, but, to be honest, I’m not sure I experienced any brightening or evening of skin tone. To be fair, I only had a sample of this, so it probably wasn’t enough time to really notice any effects. The scent was a little too strong for my tastes, but I just saw that they’ve reformulated it with a lighter scent, so I may revisit this in the future when I’ve used up more of my current skincare stash.

Murad Hydro-Dynamic® Ultimate Moisture (1.7 oz, $75): I didn’t particularly enjoy this, but that was because this was way too thick for my skin type. I imagine that someone with dry and/or dehydrated skin would love this. It’s supposed to be anti-aging as well.

Biossance Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil (1 oz, $72) and the 100% Squalane Oil (3.4 oz, $58): I got these two samples via Biossance’s site, where you can choose one of three sample sets to try. I talk more about the brand and my impression of these in my Biossance brand overview post.

Origins Plantscription™ Anti-Aging Eye Treatment: This was a solid eye cream, but not my favorite. It doesn’t beat Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye, which was my holy grail nighttime eye cream until I recently decided to go cruelty-free.

Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream: This was my holy grail daytime eye cream until I discovered the Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Crème (0.5 oz, $38), review here. I’m glad I discovered the Ole Henriksen one, especially because Ole Henriksen is cruelty-free while Origins is not.

Mario Badescu Herbal Hydrating Serum (1 oz, $30): The packaging of this sample was one of the worst I’ve ever seen. It’s a mini plastic bottle from which you can squeeze out product, but the plastic was so stiff I maybe got three uses out of it before I couldn’t squeeze anything out anymore. I considered cutting the little bottle to get as much of the product as I could, but the plastic was so thick and the bottle so small that I didn’t really want to risk cutting myself by accident. From the very limited experience I had with the product itself, I’m not really sure whether I liked it or not. Hopefully, the packaging of the full-size product is a lot easier to use.

Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash: This always makes it back into my skincare rotation because (1) my mom gets samples of this from her work, and (2) I’ve been a longtime fan. I’ve found out it’s not cruelty-free though, so after I use up the one I opened a couple of months ago, I’ll be phasing this face wash (and other Cetaphil products) out of my life.

Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser (7 oz, $30): I bought this so long ago that it’s since been repackaged and renamed as The Clean Truth™ Foaming Cleanser. This isn’t really similar to the Cetaphil other than the fact that it’s also a foaming cleanser, but I enjoyed this as much as I enjoyed the Cetaphil cleanser and would go back to it again in the future.

Glossier Priming Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $22): I did not enjoy this as a primer, but it was pretty great (and relatively affordable!) for a morning daily moisturizer. I may pick this up again in the future.

Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins™ Mineral-Enriched Renewal Cream

The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG, Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, and “Buffet”: To be honest, none of these really impressed me. I had really wanted to love them, given the affordable price points, but I just rushed myself through these because I wanted to finish them and move on to other products. Anyways, I don’t want to support Deciem (The Ordinary’s parent company) anymore, so I will not be buying anymore of The Ordinary products after I use up what I have.

belif Hungarian Water Essence: belif is another brand that I really loved, until I found out it was possibly being sold in China. I’ve gone few quite a few of these essences, and I love them, but it’s time to let it go… I really want to try the Tatcha essence, though it’s so expensive…

Origins Original Skin Retexturizing Mask with Rose Clay: This was a longtime favorite, but I will not be revisiting it until Origins becomes truly cruelty-free.

Glossier Solution (4.4 oz, $24): I’ve done a review on this before, and I actually never used it up – it’s still half full. I tried to see if any of my friends and family wanted to try it out, but no takers as of now. I don’t really want to toss it yet since there’s still so much product left, but I may end up doing so in the end, unfortunately.

Glossier Soothing Face Mist (4 oz, $18): I enjoyed this for the most part, but probably won’t be repurchasing. It’s affordable and does feel nice on the skin, but I’ve sprayed it into my eyes by accident a few times before, and it burned like no other, which is odd, considering it doesn’t seem to have any irritating ingredients. The Botanics Organic Toning Spritz (5 oz, $9.99) with rosewater is at a much better price point and doesn’t irritate my eyes.

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel: This wasn’t really life changing or anything, but it did the job. It was a great base moisturizer to mix with oils, and this size was an amazing value. It took me a year of using it twice daily to finish it up.

Julep Boost Your Radiance Reparative Rosehip Seed Facial Oil (0.85 oz, $36): This was my holy grail for the longest time, and I purchased a backup the moment I saw Julep was having a sale. I’ve since fallen in love with other oils, but this will always have a special place in my heart.

BYBI Beauty Prime Time Priming Facial Polish (1.01 oz, $18): I have a review on this product from when BYBI Beauty was still in its early stages, when it was still difficult to get BYBI Beauty products in the states. Now, you can buy from Urban Outfitters or ASOS! It’s amazing how far this green beauty company has come. Unfortunately, the product went bad (I kept this in my shower and the tub grew mold) before I could use it all up, but I may repurchase in the future.

Kiehl’s Blue Herbal Gel Cleanser: This had been my holy grail cleanser when my skin was still more acne prone, but I’ve since grown out of it.

Stay tuned for the rest of my empties next week!

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AT A GLANCE | Biossance

Biossance is a skincare company based in the Bay Area (yay!) that has its focus on effective, safe skincare that also does not harm the environment or animals. One of the core ingredients in the majority of their products is squalane, something that your skin naturally has, but which your body makes less of over the years, and Biossance harvests this squalane from a sustainable source, sugarcane.

I’ve long heard many good things about Biossance products, specifically their bestselling Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil (1 oz, $72), and the company’s focus on clean beauty only furthered my interest in what it had to offer. A couple of months ago, I finally decided to give some Biossance products a try.

Products in My Collection

Out of the five products pictures, I’ve tried three. I’ve included my thoughts on the ones I’ve tried below:

  1. Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil (deluxe sample pictured here – full size is 1 oz, $72): I really enjoyed this, though honestly, I’m not sure if I would commit to a full-size product, as it’s quite pricey, and I have lower-priced oils that work just as well, if not better. I love the sample system that Biossance has on its site (more about this below) and will likely get a sample of this again in the future. I kept this in my travel pouch, and it got quite a few uses before I ran out.
  2. 100% Squalane Oil (deluxe sample pictured here – full size is 3.4 oz, $58): I probably enjoyed this even more than the Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil, because this one is multi-use. I particularly enjoyed using it on my hair. I will be repurchasing this in the future.
  3. Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel (0.5 oz, $54): I haven’t used this yet, but it’s next in line after I use up my current nighttime eye cream.
  4. Squalane + Probiotic Gel Moisturizer (1.6 oz, $52): I’ve been using this for a couple of weeks now as my daytime moisturizer, and I really enjoy it. My skin definitely feels more radiant since I started using this. The packaging is also great – it’s a pretty hefty feeling tub that feels like it could double as a weapon. I love trying new moisturizers so it’s difficult to say whether I’ll come back to it, but it’s definitely on the top of my list of repurchases if I don’t discover something new I’ll want to try.
  5. Squalane + Antioxidant Cleansing Cloths (25 cloths for $18): I received one cloth as a sample when I purchased the eye gel and moisturizer. I’ve yet to try this, but I’m keeping it in my beauty bag in my purse right now, on hand in case I ever need a makeup wipe. To be honest, I’m not sure I’ll ever purchase the full box, since I much prefer just getting drugstore wipes.

Biossance’s “Free” Sample Offering

As their products are pretty pricey, I really appreciate that they offer “free” samples to try via their site. For just a $5 shipping fee, you can choose from three different sets of deluxe samples.

  1. Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil and the 100% Squalane Oil
  2. Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel and 100% Squalane Oil
  3. Squalane + Probiotic Gel Moisturizer and Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil

All but the Squalane + Probiotic Gel Moisturizer sample are 4 ml (or approximately 0.14 oz). The gel moisturizer sample is 3 ml. When I got the samples, only option 1 was available, and personally, I think it’s where you’ll get the most bang for your buck. Oils only require a few drops per use, whereas a moisturizer or eye cream would require more.

 

Overall, I’m impressed, but not mindblown, by their products. They’ve released new products since I did this mini-haul though, and I’m definitely interested in giving those a try.

Have you tried Biossance products before?

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REVIEW | Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Crème

I’m a big fan of the Ole Henriksen brand, so I had been looking forward to trying the Banana Bright Eye Crème (0.5 oz, $38) since the announcement of its release. Needless to say, I was extremely excited when I received this complimentary from Influenster for review. I’ve talked about Influenster and products I’ve received from them before, and I highly recommend you check them out if you like getting free stuff to review 🙂

I had a good feeling that I would enjoy this eye cream, since I’m a big sucker for vitamin C in my morning eye creams, and the collagen also seemed like a big plus, with its anti-aging and elasticity-improving benefits.

I’ve been trying it for a few weeks now, and I am not disappointed at all. The eye cream really does visibly brighten my under eye area, and while it’s a thicker consistency than I’m used to for the morning, it does a great job of moisturizing my eye area and prepping my under eye area for concealer. I’ve also noticed that when I use this eye cream, I don’t even need to use concealer if I’m not wearing much makeup – the banana powder effect to the eye cream means it can function as a light coverage concealer 🙂

With its multitasking abilities, this eye cream is definitely worth the money to me. I will likely be purchasing this with my own money after I run out.

Have you gotten to try the Banana Bright Eye Crème?

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REVIEW | SKINFOOD Intensive Shea Butter Cream in Shower

Today, I’ll be reviewing my first body skincare product, SKINFOOD’s Intensive Shea Butter Cream in Shower (11.33 oz, $19 on SokoGlam).

Despite being so good with my facial skincare routine, I, more often than not, neglect the rest of my body when it comes to skincare. I get too lazy to put on moisturizer after I shower, and it doesn’t help that, a lot of times, the moisturizer leaves my hands greasy. However, with winter coming up, I figured I should really get on it, especially because the skin on my legs can get kind of scaly with the winter dryness.

When I saw Weylie on Youtube talk about this recently, I decided it was the perfect product for someone lazy like me, and purchased it when SokoGlam just happened to be having a SKINFOOD sale.

After a couple of weeks of use, I’ve found that it’s not that effective for me as an actual in shower moisturizer. When I put it on wet skin, the product seems to wash off without really imparting any moisture to my skin. Instead, it works best when I’ve just finished my shower and patted myself dry with a towel, so my skin is still damp, but no longer wet. It absorbs quickly and leaves my skin feeling smooth and smelling faintly of shea butter.

Would I repurchase this again? Maybe, but I’m not in a rush to do so. Honestly, just the fact that I now keep a body moisturizer in my shower is more of a motivation for me to moisturize regularly than using an in-shower moisturizer. That being said, I do want to explore other in shower moisturizers, and Glossier’s new Body Hero Daily Perfecting Cream (8.4 fl oz, $22) has really caught my interest as well.

Have you tried in-shower moisturizers before? Which is your favorite?

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REVIEW | Origins GinZing SPF 40 Energy-Boosting Tinted Moisturizer

I was so excited when Origins released their SPF 40 Energy-Boosting Tinted Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $38) – I have been looking for a good SPF for a while, and I’m a big fan of Origins’ GinZing line, especially the Energy-Boosting Gel Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $28.50) and the Refreshing Eye Cream to Brighten and Depuff (0.5 fl oz, $31). Origins just happened to be having their Friends and Family sale, so I purchased this without much hesitation.

The products in the GinZing line from Origins all contain coffee bean, which helps wake up and restore radiance tired skin, and panax ginseng, an anti-aging ingredient that helps tone and brighten skin. They also tend to have citrus scents, and this tinted moisturizer is no different.

Reviews for this have been pretty mixed, as it seems that the tint, which is supposed to adapt to your skin tone, has been unflattering for many. For me, that concern was put to rest pretty quickly, as my friend had just tried this product without many issues. And, I figured if the color didn’t turn out too well on me, I could use it purely as a sunscreen underneath other face makeup.

Thankfully for me, the tint matched my skin perfectly – it doesn’t really have any coverage at all, but it does even out skin tone and give a nice, healthy glow to the skin. It felt and smelled like a moisturizer, with barely any sunscreen smell at all.

This product is perfect for lazy, no-makeup days, since you can easily use your fingers to apply this. I’ve only used this without any other makeup, as I don’t wear makeup on a typical day, but I can see myself using this on makeup days when I’m going for the no-makeup look.

I’m not sure if I would repurchase this since I do think it’s kind of pricey for how much you get and what it is, but if I don’t find anything I like more I will definitely come back to it.

Have you tried this tinted moisturizer before?

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FAVORITES | August 2017

In the blink of an eye, it’s already September, and we’re heading into Labor Day weekend and the end of summer. With that in mind, I thought it’d be nice to start a favorites series before summer comes to a complete end.

These posts will primarily be on beauty favorites, but if I have any fashion or other lifestyle favorites, I will include those as well. For this month, I have a fashion love that isn’t included in the post image – continue reading to see what it is! 🙂

  1. LANEIGE Water Sleeping Mask (2.3 oz, $25): My friend recommended this to me, and I am so glad I picked it up. It’s lightweight, fast-absorbing, and very easy to use. I usually put this on in place of my nighttime moisturizer, and when I do, I wake up the next morning with soft, dewy skin. It’s also pretty good value for the price – you get a hefty jar of it, and the packaging neither looks nor feels cheap. There’s also a spatula that you can use to scoop out the product.
  2. Sonia Kashuk Limited Edition Face Palette Pretty Cheeky (0.38 oz, $19.99 – currently $16.98): As soon as I saw KathleenLights recommend this on Youtube, I went ahead and purchased it. Despite being a drugstore product, the quality of the packaging is good, and the design on the compact is very cute. The formulas for the bronzer, blush, and highlighter are all amazing – if you swatch any of them with your finger, you’ll find that they’re almost creamy in texture. They’re also super pigmented, so make sure you go in with a light hand, especially if you’re more fair-skinned, since these colors are definitely more targeted for medium skin tones. There is quite a bit of fall out when you dip your brush in, but that’s not too much of an issue for me because they apply so nicely to my face.
  3. Kevin Aucoin The Eyelash Curler ($21): My previous eyelash curler from Trish McEvoy was great, but it was old and no longer curling my lashes. I decided I wanted to try a new one, and this one had decent reviews on Sephora. It definitely didn’t disappoint – it curls my lashes nicely and fits the shape of my eye well.
  4. Kiehl’s Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturizing Serum ($58 for 1.7 fl oz, or $77 for 2.5 fl oz): I have a whole review of this here. I love how this makes my skin feel and plan to purchase a full-size version when I have used up more of my current skincare inventory.
  5. Glossier Milk Jelly Cleanser (6 fl oz, $18): I’ve had this for a while and had been using it solely as a makeup remover. It did the job, but I never particularly enjoyed using it. Recently, I decided to try using it as a face wash instead, and I love using it as a face wash so much more than I ever did using it as a makeup remover. I use it as a morning cleanser now, and it leaves my skin clean and refreshed without stripping it of moisture. Unfortunately, I’m almost near the end of my bottle, so I won’t be getting back to it for a while.
  6. Glossier Priming Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $22): I bought this a while ago when Glossier was first getting big, and I have to say I didn’t think it was anything extraordinary as a primer, which was how I used it. In hindsight, it’s probably because my skin is normal/combination/oily, so additional moisture isn’t really what I need in a primer. In a recent effort to finish products before they expire, I started using this as a moisturizer in the morning, and it’s amazing. It gives just the right amount of moisture and dewiness to my face. With the rediscovery and newfound love for this and the Milk Jelly Cleanser, I’m excited to get my hands on more Glossier products.
  7. The Body Shop Pink Grapefruit Shower Gel (25.3 fl oz, $20): I love The Body Shop’s shower gels, and they’re pretty affordable since there are sales so often. I got this particular one when Amazon had a deal on these for around $11, but The Body Shop often has “buy x amount, get x amount free” deals where you can get them for even less. I had to give a shout out to the Pink Grapefruit in this post because this scent is stronger than any of the other scents I’ve used, so every time I shower, my whole bathroom smells nice and fresh.
  8. The Gemma Mule in Leather in English Saddle ($98): I love these. I purchased them last month as a birthday present to myself when Madewell offered me $25 off my purchase. I hate wearing socks, so I’ve been trying to find a good pair of work shoes that don’t require socks. These are extremely comfortable, and I can walk a long time in them. The leather started off a bit stiffer and rubbed at certain parts of my foot the wrong way, but as I wear them more that’s become less of an issue.

What were your favorites this past month? Let me know in the comments section below!

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HAUL | Sephora Birthday Gift + Minis

As I’m sure most of you know, Sephora offers a free birthday gift every year to its Beauty Insiders. It’s a pretty generous gift, given that you don’t have to redeem it with a purchase, and it’s usually a couple of deluxe sample sizes in a little birthday gift set. This year, there is the choice of a Caudalie skincare set, a Tarte makeup set, or a Jack Black moisturizing and cleansing duo.

When I was redeeming my birthday gift, I realized that I hadn’t redeemed any of my points in a good while. Then, I got sucked in by the face masks, and ended up picking up some of those as well. Consequently, I ended up with a little haul… and well, I guess at least I can share with you all what I got!

  1. Caudalie Moisturizer and Serum Set (0.33 oz each): I am currently using the Vinosource S.O.S Thirst Quenching Serum (1 oz, $49) and loving it, so I figured this birthday gift would be a good opportunity to try other products in the line. The set includes the Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet (1.3 oz, $39) and the Vinoperfect Radiance Serum (1 oz, $79).
  2. SEPHORA Collection Sleeping Masks ($4 each): I got three of these, in green tea, pomegranate, and rose. I love these because they’re such easy masks to use – usually, I put this on as the last step of my nighttime skincare routine, in place of my usual moisturizer. A little goes a long way, so you can use each packet a handful of times before it’s gone. They’re good for travel too, since they take up so little space. Honestly though, from the times I’ve used these masks, I haven’t seen much difference between the different masks. Regardless, I would recommend them because they’re affordable, and every time I use one, I wake up with moisturized, dewy skin.
  3. Tatcha’s The Water Cream (0.17 oz, 100 points): I’ve been wanting to try this since my friend recommended it to me, and when I saw this available in the Rewards Boutique, I added it to my cart without a second thought. Also, considering how the full-size of this product (1.7 oz) is a hefty $68, redeeming this reward was such a steal.
  4. SUNDAY RILEY U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Face Oil (0.17 oz, 100 points): Another steal, considering the largest size of this product (1.18 oz) is $80. I’ve never tried any Sunday Riley products, and this product is supposed to help smooth skin.
  5. MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua XL Color Paint Shadow in Iridescent Warm Beige: (0.05 oz, 100 points): I’ve been hearing quite a few beauty vloggers rave about this, so I got curious. The full size (0.16 oz) retails at $25.

I’m going to be traveling for ten days next month, so I’ll be trying all of these little minis then. I’ll make sure to update you guys on my thoughts after I try them!

If you’ve already had your birthday this year, which gift did you get, and did you like it? If you haven’t, which gift do you want? Let me know in the comments!

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AT A GLANCE | The Ordinary

The Ordinary has been all over the internet, but for those of you who don’t know, it’s an affordable, cruelty-free skincare line under the Canadian company Deciem, which is “an umbrella of brands focused on advanced functional beauty”.

My brother had been pushing me to try The Ordinary products for a while, but I never really kept his recommendation in mind. Then, a couple months ago I went to visit him for his graduation, I got to see and hear about the products in person. They finally caught my attention, and when I came back from my trip, I took the plunge and bought quite a handful of their products to try.

Despite the minimal, expensive looking packaging, the brand is very affordable – I got everything pictured here for around $60 total, with no products exceeding $15. And not only does the packaging look expensive, it actually feels expensive too – if the products work as they claim to, then I will be a convert for life.

I haven’t tried most of these yet, but I wanted to share with you what I got and my thoughts on the products I’ve tried already. In a few months, I’ll come back with an updated post to share my thoughts on everything else.

The Ordinary’s website is very informative, so I highly recommend doing some research on the site before you make any purchase, since the product names don’t really tell you much about what they do. In the states, The Ordinary can be purchased at its own website (free shipping with $25+ order), Beautylish (free shipping with $30+ order), or ASOS (free shipping with $40+) order. I wouldn’t recommend ordering from ASOS, however, since there’s a bit of a markup on the site. Prices that I have listed below are from The Ordinary site.

  1. High-Spreadability Fluid Primer (30 ml, $7.90): I’m almost running out of primer, so I figured it was a great opportunity for me to stock up and try something new. My brother recommended the other primer they have, the mattifying High-Adherence Silicone Primer (30 ml, $4.90), but since my skin isn’t as oily as it was before, I decided to go with this one instead, which is supposed to help even out makeup application and give your face a natural, dewy finish.
  2. Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG (30 ml, $6.70): This one is an eye serum that claims to help reduce puffiness and dark circles in the eye contour. I’ve been using this on and off for two months now, and I do think that it has helped with depuffing my eyes. It hasn’t done much for my dark circles yet, but I’m not too surprised because I have yet to find anything for my intense dark circles.
  3. Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution (240 ml, $8.70): I bought this one to try because I just finished using up my Pixi Glow Tonic (3.4 fl oz/100 ml, $15), which contains 5% glycolic acid.
  4. Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate 10% (30 ml, $9.60): The Ordinary has plenty of Vitamin C products, and I wanted to compare theirs with other brands’ Vitamin C products. Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, a stable derivative of Vitamin C, seemed like a good choice to me due to its lower potency and skin brightening benefits.
  5. Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% (30 ml, $5.90): My brother recommended this one to me. It’s a vitamin (Niacinamide is Vitamin B3) and mineral (Zinc) serum that is supposed to reduce the appearance of blemishes and congestion on the skin. I have yet to try this, but it’s one of my brother’s favorites.
  6. “Buffet” (30 ml, $14.80): Another recommendation from my brother – this one is a multi-technology peptide serum that is supposed to target multiple signs of aging at once.
  7. Serum Foundation in 2.1 Y (30 ml, $6.70): Since all of the skincare products looked so promising, I wondered what their foundation would be like, especially at such an affordable price point. I’ve used this a few times already, and I’m not sure how I feel about it yet. It is indeed very serum like as the name suggests and very lightweight on the skin, but for medium coverage, it is extremely pigmented. The high saturation, low viscosity formulation really throws me off. I’ll have to try it more before giving a final verdict.

Have you tried anything from The Ordinary? What were your thoughts on what you tried?

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HAUL | Beauty Gems at Marshalls

Last week, I went to Marshalls to pick up a few home and kitchen items I needed. As always, I got distracted by the rest of the items available at the store, and, this time, ended up sucked into the beauty section. They’ve always had some pretty good stuff there at discounted prices, like Crabtree & Evelyn or The Body Shop, but in just a couple months since I last went, Marshalls went and became a treasure trove for discounted, higher-end beauty items!

Click through to see what I got and a price comparison chart for the products 🙂

Continue reading “HAUL | Beauty Gems at Marshalls”

REVIEW | Posh VoxBox

I was fortunate enough to receive the generous Posh VoxBox from Influenster a couple of weeks ago, and thought it’d be great to include reviews of those products here.

For those of you who don’t know what Influenster is, it’s an online/app community where you can post reviews or read other people’s reviews, and receive free products in VoxBoxes to test based on social media influence and completion of certain campaigns available to participate in on the site. Influenster predominantly features beauty products, but there are also food, health, pet products, and more. It’s easy to sign up, too – just link your social media accounts, answer some snaps to determine your interests, and you’re ready to go. If you’re interested, check it out here (x).

And without further ado, let’s get onto the product reviews:

  1. AQUIS Lisse Luxe Hair Turban ($30): I LOVE this. I have a lot of hair, and it always feels like such a hassle to deal with the mop my hair becomes after I wash it. I don’t like wrapping it with my body towel, because it’s too heavy on my head, but the smaller sized towels I have don’t fit all of my hair. This is perfect, because its design allows me to wrap all my hair up and have it comfortably sit on top of my head. Honestly though, seeing the price tag for this made me do a double take – it’s a pretty hefty price for a hair towel. I did a quick search and found similar products across the internet, for a fraction of the price, like this one from Walmart for $4.98. If anyone’s tried any affordable hair towels before, let me know how it went!
  2. Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo (8.5 fl oz, $22) and Conditioner (8.5 fl oz, $24): This is a great line of hair products, from what I can see from these two. The shampoo cleans my hair without stripping it of moisture, and the conditioner leaves my hair feeling soft. These products also do what they say, keeping hair defrizzed, and while my hair isn’t curly, I can visibly see more wave definition in my hair after I use them. The product is also sulfate free and has a light, pleasant scent. The only complaint I have is that the bottles are hard to squeeze – hopefully, this is only an issue with the sample bottles.
  3. LASHFOOD BROWFOOD Aqua Brow Powder + Pencil Duo (powder 0.04 oz, pencil 0.01 oz, $25): This is a great brow product. I don’t usually use brow powders or brow pencils because I don’t like doing too much to my brows, but this product definitely changed my mind. The pencil applied smoothly and had great pigmentation, and I’d definitely say it’s the winner out of the two parts of this product. The powder is great too and applies well to the brows, but has a little too much kick up of powder and can become a bit messy. I plan on passing this on to my sister, who will love it and get much more use out of it.
  4. Julep Boost Your Radiance Reparative Rosehip Seed Facial Oil (0.85 fl oz, $36): Despite all the hype and benefits facial oils seem to have, I’ve never been a fan due to bad experiences with a few that left my skin greasy yet not very moisturized. I had been prepared to pass on this because I broke out the first 2 days I used it, but I decided to give it another chance, and have continued to use it for the past 2 weeks, both night and day, as part of my daily skincare routine. I’m glad I did, because this is great. It gives me a great amount of moisture without leaving my skin feeling greasy at all, and it feels more like a serum than an oil. Next, I want to try mixing it in with my foundation and see how that goes.
  5. Dermalogica Stress Positive Eye Lift (0.85 fl oz, $65): This is an amazing product. The directions say you can use it either as an occasional treatment or daily to treat chronic eye fatigue, and I use it daily in the morning because I have fatigued looking eyes, dark circles, and puffiness. I’ve been using it for two weeks, and it’s been great. The applicator helps with cooling and depuffing, and the formula is light and absorbs well into the skin. I can’t say yet whether using this product has visibly decreased the fatigue or diminished my dark circles, but it definitely feels like it has. I’m going to continue using this and see whether it’ll do so in the future, but regardless, I definitely recommend this for anyone with puffiness, fatigue, or dark circles.
  6. Sigma Beauty Aura Powder in Nymphaea (0.3 oz, $19): This is a very pretty blush. You can’t really tell from the picture I have here, but the blush is actually very pink, despite it saying on the site that it’s a coral shade. Pink isn’t a blush color I usually reach for, so I was a bit disappointed to see it in the pan when I first opened it. But this shade was surprisingly flattering on me, and gave me a nice, healthy flush perfect for the summer. I need to build it up for it to show on my face, but I’m not sure whether it’s due to a lack of pigmentation or due to my skin tone being too dark for this blush. Overall, it’s a decent product, but probably not something I’ll reach for constantly.
  7. Sigma Beauty F40 Large Angled Contour Brush ($23): This isn’t the usual type of brush I use for blush, but it worked surprisingly well with the Sigma blush. Rather than circular motions, I swiped the product from the apple of my cheek back towards my hair line, and it applied the blush pretty evenly. On the other hand, this brush fails as a contour/bronzer brush. The brush hairs are way too long to get a nice chiseled look with contour and way too flimsy for precise application of bronzer. Overall, the brush is very well made and has definitely piqued my interested in Sigma brushes.

Overall, the value of this Posh VoxBox is $211.54 (price of sample size Ouidad shampoo and conditioner calculated from full size prices), which is amazing, and one of the reasons I will continue to be an Influenster user. You don’t need to be a famous influencer to try awesome products for free 🙂 (This isn’t sponsored. I just think Influenster is great.)