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Archive for the ‘face’ Category

May to August 2016 Empties

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Ah yes, it’s been a long time. Life and family took over most of my time this summer and it was great enjoying it all. I did keep a rather large stash of empties in my room (to which my husband always asked when I was going to throw them all out, haha). I amassed quite a bit this time so let’s get to it.

May to August 2016 Empties 1/3
Larger bottles first

The Body Shop Almond Conditioning Hand Wash

I always default to this hand wash whenever my hands are running amuck with dry, itchy, flaky skin from washing them so much at work. It’s gentle, moisturizing, and has a light fragrance. Best to get when The Body Shop has their buy 3 get 2 free sales.

St. Ives Refresh & Revive Pear Nectar & Soy Body Lotion

Currently on my second bottle. This is a great moisturizer that works without breaking the bank. I use it mainly for daily maintenance, since I save a richer moisturizer for when my skin gets too dry. It absorbs quickly and leaves no greasy residue.

Aveeno Baby Daily Lotion

Bought the smaller size squeeze bottle to try it out with my baby’s skin. Being as sensitive as they are in their early months (and it seems like no ever works to get rid of that dry skin), it wasn’t until this year that I seriously tried using it again. I think it’s a combination of his skin being more resistant now as well as the humidity, but this is a great daily lotion that keeps the dryness at bay. It definitely works for my baby so I’m more likely to purchase the larger pump bottle next time (more volume per dollar).

I love… Strawberries & Cream bubble bath and shower crème

I’ve got a review for this that’s coming up soon.

Marcelle Gentle Make-Up Remover for Sensitive Eyes

Review coming soon!

Lancôme Tonique Radiance

Full review here.

 

May to August 2016 Empties 2/3
Samples next

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid

Hard to say if this works or not as I’m not major acne sufferer. I get the occasional one here and there, but nothing that I need to use specialized creams or treatments for it. It has a very strong smell, too strong for me.

Vasanti BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator

I tried using this scrub twice a week just to exfoliate. There’s tons of micro-crystals in here so a little bit goes a long way. Also, take care in how hard you scrub. The first time I used it I didn’t think about that and felt like I had tiny scratches all over my face. Use a light hand and you’ll be fine.

Lancôme Advanced Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Full review here. I’ve been trying to get through my sample stash lately.

Tarte Pure Maracuja Oil

I’m not a huge fan of facial oils because I can’t get over the psychological components of slathering oil all over my face. It is moisturizing, however, it does take some time for it to absorb fully. As moisturizing as it is, I get that greasy feeling that just won’t go away. Likely won’t get this or any other facial oils.

Laneige Light Balancing Emulsion

Full review here.

Lancôme Visionnaire Advanced Skin Corrector

Another Lancôme sample to try out. I don’t have wrinkles (yet), problematic pores (yet), or unevenness (yet), so I can’t comment on the efficacy of this. The fragrance is half and half – it’s pleasant yet it’s not. I can’t put my finger on it. For now, I like Advanced Génefique and it works, so I’ll stick with it.

 

May to August 2016 Empties 3/3
And miscellaneous

Ole Henriksen The Clean Truth Cleansing Cloths – Brightening

Whoa oranges!! The first thing I noticed was the smell – a very strong orange smell. Though not a super sweet smell, it’s quite nice. These cleansing cloths are great for taking off the day’s sweat and grime, but leave a bit of a residue afterwards. I still like using good old water and a face cloth afterwards just for that clean feeling.

L’Occitane 20% Shea Dry Skin Hand Cream

This stuff is amazing! I may need to pick up a tube or two or three…

Soft lips Lip Moisturizer SPF20 Watermelon

Really need to write a full review for this. One of my favourite lip balms that I keep buying over and over.

Written by Jessica

September 8th, 2016 at 12:12 pm

March and April 2016 Empties

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Yes, blog posts are slow coming out. Hard to find time between work, baby, life, and me time. Some more posts are being cooked (slow-cooked?) up so stay tuned!

 

March/April 2016 empties 1/3

Delectable Ultra Nourishing Hand Cream

This stuff works well, but smells really really sweet. Think cotton candy. I like that it helps out my dry hands but the smell is really overbearing. Probably won’t buy this again.

DERMAdoctor KP duty lotion

Ah this stuff reminds me of Glysomed! It goes on thick and almost creates a super thin layer to keep moisture in. It doesn’t work all that well during the day when you need to wash your hands frequently, but it works really well just before bed.

The Face Shop Herb Day Cleansing Foam Mousse – lemon

I wanted to like this but I find it dries out my skin. Perhaps it’s because of the lemon (and the brightening properties it has or so the sales lady tells me) but it leaves me with that super squeaky feeling after rinsing it off. I think this would work on those with oily skin, but for normal/combination, be wary that it may dry you out more.

Pür-lisse Gentle Soy Milk Cleanser

This was my first time using a milk-type cleanser and I’m not a huge fan of it. I almost feel like my face is a little greasy afterwards.

NeoStrata Glycolic Renewal Smoothing Cream

The chemical smell is strong in this one!! Supposedly it helps cell renewal with its 5% glycolic acid content. With such a small sample, I can’t really speak for any of those claims. The smell is enough to keep me away though.

Soft lips Lip Hydration and Protection

I think they’ve revamped their look recently so they don’t look like this anymore. Still love this stuff for every day lip hydration. For severely cracked lips, it doesn’t help much, but for daily conditioning, it works.

 

March/April 2016 empties 2/3

Lancôme Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Full review here. Love this stuff!

The Body Shop Drops of Youth Youth Concentrate and Youth Cream

Full review here. A great alternative to the pricier option above!

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream

Full review here. Really good stuff for the summer months!

 

March/April 2016 empties 3/3

I love… Raspberry & Blackberry nourishing body butter

Full review coming soon!

Iope Air Cushion XP

Full review coming soon!

Written by Jessica

May 13th, 2016 at 11:37 am

The Body Shop Drops of Youth – Youth Concentrate and Youth Cream

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I had won a raffle on Beautezine’s webpage to partake in The Body Shop’s Drops of Youth 28 day challenge. The idea is simple – use the products for 28 days and you’ll find that your pores look tightened, skin that feels bouncier, and fine lines appear smoothed. I currently like my current skin care routine but I’m game to try something new and see if it a) works just as well, b) is better, or c) is worse.

 

The Packaging

The Body Shop Drops of Youth - outer packaging
Cardboard boxes

Each product was housed in a thin cardboard box.

 

The Body Shop Drops of Youth - glass containers
Glass containers

The glass is a semi-opaque green colour with black tops and a silvery label. The Youth Concentrate is a dropper style bottle, so the dropped screws on tightly to the bottle. It contains 50ml worth of product. The Youth Cream is a jar with a screw top lid. It also contains 50ml of product.

 

The Body Shop Drops of Youth - Youth Cream inner lid
Inner lid for Youth Cream

I love inner lids because it prevents product from getting all over the lid and into the creases.

 

The Product

The Body Shop Drops of Youth - Youth Concentrate
Drops of Youth Concentrate

Quite literally “drops” of youth.

The Youth Concentrate is semi-opaque and very viscous. It’s a little more viscous than honey. Three drops was all I needed for my face and neck. I used four drops if my hands were more dry that day (and thus soaked up more product).

 

The Body Shop Drops of Youth - Youth Cream
Youth Cream with inner lid removed

The Youth Cream is slightly thinner than what you’d expect from a night cream. It’s a creamy white and very soft in texture.

 

The Verdict

I’m going to start off by saying that for this challenge, I didn’t change anything in my daily routine, only that the products that I normally used for serum and moisturizing were swapped out for these two. Originally, my skincare routine was to wash with Neutrogena’s Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser, tone with Lancôme’s Tonique Radiance, followed by Lancôme’s Advanced Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate, and Laneige’s Water Bank Gel Cream. So I swapped out Advanced Génifique for Drops of Youth Concentrate and Water Bank Gel Cream for Drops of Youth Cream.

After these 28 days, the biggest difference I noticed was in the physical feel of my skin. When I touch my face, it genuinely felt softer to touch, like it was better moisturized than before. In terms of my pores, they remained the same. I also did not see any fine lines (which is also the same before I started this challenge).

It’s now past 28 days and I’ve only used about half of each. That means I still have another month’s worth of product to use.

The Body Shop’s Drops of Youth challenge has me coming to the conclusion that it works just as well as Lancôme’s Advanced Génifique but at half the price point. That in itself is a winner in my book. The fact that it made my skin feel more soft gives it an upper edge. So I can say it definitely has improved my skin!! Would I purchase this? Absolutely. Should you? YES!

Thanks again to Beautezine for the chance to try this out!

 

Where to Buy

Written by Jessica

March 10th, 2016 at 10:29 pm

Posted in Beauty,face,skincare

February 2016 Empties

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February 2016 empties
Excuse the background – my kid’s taken over my house

Naisture Mask Pack – White Rose

I’m finding the Naisture mask packs to have a very strong smell to them. It could be that I’ve had them for a long time and that’s why it’s smelling so much. For some reason, this mask pack stung a little bit and I didn’t leave it on my face for the full 15 minutes.

Matrix Biolage Exquisite Oil Micro-Oil Shampoo and Oil Crème Conditioner

I bought a ton of these last year and have finally gotten through a pair of them. This is my current favourite shampoo and conditioner combination and I still have another backup in addition to the ones I have open now.

Garnier Body Intensive 7 Days Repairing Lotion

Full review here. Love this stuff but I get the feeling that it’s been discontinued. I’m having a hard time finding it for sale these days.

Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser – foaming formula

Full review here. Love love love this stuff. Still using it. Haven’t found anything else I like better.

Soft lips Lip Moisturizer SPF 20 – Watermelon

This is still my favourite lip balm that hydrates my lips and keeps the skin soft. I have one on my nightstand as well as one in my diaper bag/purse. It has to be with me!

Written by Jessica

March 3rd, 2016 at 7:24 pm

December 2015 and January 2016 Empties

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Lots of samples in these two months’ empties. Lots of samples used because I brought a ton of them with me during winter vacation. We all spent baby’s first Christmas in Vancouver!

Dec 2015 - Jan 2016 empties - part 1

Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Shampoo and Conditioner

I think this came from an old Luxe Box but I’ve finally dug it out to use. I like that it has a pleasant mild fragrance as opposed to some hair products whose smell just hits you in the face. It doesn’t give you a crazy lather when wet, but just enough for you to think “it’s working”. I used this twice a week because I felt it gave my hair a better clean than my current shampoo and conditioner combo. I like this, but can’t bring myself to spend so much on shampoo and conditioner.

Lancôme Bienfait Multi-Vital SPF 30 High Potency Daily Moisturizing Lotion

Full review of the cream version here. The lotion is lighter and is a great daily moisturizer. Bonus points for not smelling like sunscreen and no greasy feeling either.

Shiseido Ibuki Softening Concentrate and Refining Moisturizer

Full review of both here. These little deluxe samples are awesome for traveling. They also last a long time too! I love the Ibuki line.

Laneige Light Power Essential Skin Refiner

Full review here.

Lancôme Génifique and Advanced Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate

Full review here. There’s a difference between Génifique and Advanced Génifique which I explained in the review, and I used to prefer the former over the latter. Now, I like the Advanced Génifique and continue to use it to this day. Faithful user since 2011!

Benefit Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer

Full review here. I’ve had this sitting in my makeup bin forever and had completely forgotten it. I’m pretty sure I finished it before I gave birth so… this empty has been sitting around for a year. Oops.

 

Dec 2015 - Jan 2016 empties - part 2

Shiseido Facial Cotton

This stuff is like angel fluff on your face. Which is probably why I’m so stingy when it comes to using it. I actually save it to use with Shiseido softening products. Everything else (especially nail polish remover!), I use regular cotton pads. I don’t buy these often, but it’s more of a treat once in a while.

Naisture 15minutes: Mask Pack – Sweet Honey and Fresh Aloe

I’ve been trying to get through these face masks for the last few months when baby’s sleeping, but I keep getting side tracked with other things! These masks are pretty good, and make my face feel fresh and nicely hydrated. It won’t make your super dry skin suddenly supple and soft, but it does give your skin a nice dose of hydration.

Neutrogena Make-Up Removing Cleansing Wipes

These are a must for traveling. Everything comes off. Even waterproof eyeliner.

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof in Ébène

Full review here. This took me so long to finish because I kept on saving it for special occasions. It was my first Chanel purchase and I wanted to make sure I wasn’t going to go through it too quickly. Also, it helped that black eyeliner is not my everyday colour. I wanted to love it, but it doesn’t stay put on my eyelids, even if I used an eyelid primer. Probably will not repurchase this.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Demolition

This was my every day liner for work. Not too bold, but just enough for definition. Have a few more 24/7 pencils to get through. There’s a little bit of transfer to upper eyelids but they don’t come down and give me racoon eyes. +1 for me.

 

Dec 2015 - Jan 2016 empties - part 3

Lancôme Visionnaire Advanced Skin Corrector and Advanced Multi-Correcting Cream

These samples were so small that I can’t really form a full opinion on it. Fragrance is pleasant but as for its claims to battle wrinkles, pores, and evenness, I couldn’t see any effect. The samples lasted me 2 days.

Shiseido Ibuki Softening Concentrate and Refining Moisturizer

See above review.

Lancôme DreamTone Ultimate Dark Spot Corrector in 1 – Fair Skin Tone

This is obviously the wrong skin tone for me (fair? Hah!) but it was a sample from Sephora that was randomly added in so I figured I would try it. Again, sample was too small for me to see any effect. The floral fragrance was nice and not too heavy. For the price point, I would need a lot of people vouching for it before I could bring myself to purchase it.

 

**On a side note, one of my New Year’s resolutions is to work through my stash rather than buy new things to try. This will likely translate into more empties. Wish me luck!

Written by Jessica

February 2nd, 2016 at 11:13 am

October and November 2015 Empties

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Whoops! The pictures I originally took got erased by accident (Mr reformatted the memory card without making sure everything was offloaded) so this post will be text heavy. I will indicate what was full size and what was sample size.

[Edit: Jan 9th, 2016 – Pictures have been found!! Post updated to include pictures and remove sample count in text.]

 

Oct - Nov 2016 Empties part 1

 

Laneige Water Sleeping Pack EX

Full review here. I love this stuff. I use this mini jar for traveling hence why it took so long to get through. Still going through the regular size jar, plus I now have 2 more mini jars thanks to my good friend G!

Evolvh UltraShine Moisture Shampoo

I got this in a Luxebox and was immediately disappointed it didn’t come with the accompanying conditioner. The shampoo itself was pretty good – I felt it really washed all the grease and grime away leaving me with squeaky clean hair. I used it twice a week just to make sure my hair was super clean. Would I purchase a full size? Probably not as I don’t usually indulge in hair treatments. I’m a shampoo and conditioner only kind of gal.

Lancôme Tonique Radiance

Full review here. Still have two more backups (or was that three?).

 

Oct - Nov 2016 Empties part 2

 

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream for normal to dry skin

The best part of getting multiple samples is the chance to really use a product. This sample was only 0.18oz, which is barely enough to moisturize my arms. Since I had 5 of them, I had no problem moisturizing my entire body (arms, torso, legs). There is an ever so slightly sticky feeling immediately after applying, however it goes away fairly quickly. Skin is left smooth and soft. Very little scent, if any. Great for those who want a great budget moisturizer with sensitivities to fragrances.

Softlips Lip Moisturizer SPF 20 in Watermelon

This is my absolute favourite lip moisturizer. I don’t know why I never did a full review on the blog about this. Watermelon is one of my favourite scents for this. The small and thin size make it perfect to toss into any bag (or pocket!) and it works so well when my lips are dry and chapped. I’ve got 2 more backups.

Live Clean (Baby) moisturizing baby lotion

I know, it’s supposed to be for baby but I used it on myself instead. Although it moisturized well, the smell was atrocious. I can’t imagine using this on my baby. Never. Ever. Not until they get rid of that horrible smell.

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Massage Lotion for Stretch Marks

Only one little sample so can’t say much about how it did for stretch marks. It did, however, smell too strongly of cocoa and the smell lingered too long for my liking. Will not be purchasing this.

Caudalie Premier Cru The Eye Cream

I’m trying to remember if I got this in a beauty box or a Sephora order. Regardless, it is the best damn sample I have ever received. This eye cream is amazingly and I love it. The fact that it’s a 7ml sample that lasted me over 2 months of use (usually at night) was already a winner.  Add in the fact that when looking at how much it costs in regular size, this little deluxe sample is actually worth $50!

Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate

Full review here. Again, I love sample sizes specifically for travel.

Written by Jessica

December 17th, 2015 at 9:46 am

September 2015 Empties

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September 2015 Empties
Just a couple of things this time

Garnier Body Hydra Express 24H Hydrating Gel-Cream

Finally, I’ve finished off the last of the bottles of gel-cream formulation! As expressed in my previous empties post, I am not a fan of the gel-cream and am quite excited to be finally done with them. Am definitely not repurchasing this version.

Pur-Lisse Pur-Moist Hydra-Balance Moisturizer

A sample I received in a Luxebox, this moisturizer was ok. Though it was hydrating, it did have a bit of a greasy feeling afterwards. Will not be purchasing this.

Written by Jessica

October 10th, 2015 at 8:55 am

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream

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** This post was updated on Oct 1, 2015 since Laneige is now available in Canada. I bought the asian version but for the Canadian version, I received it complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.**

 

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream - packaging
Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream – asian version

I’ve been a fan of Laneige products ever since I was introduced to it a couple years ago. A Korean brand under the Amore umbrella, this line is now available at Target and Sephora stores in the US. For us Canadians, it’s now available at Sephora! Woo hoo!

The Water Bank line is ideal for hydration, something my dry, parched skin craved during our cold, Canadian winter. The gel cream is good for those with normal and combination skin, which is great for my oily t-zone and dry cheeks. It’s also light which is perfect for the summer months.

Laneige is known for using Himalayan snow water as one of its ingredients. It also contains 6 minerals: magnesium, manganese, zinc, calcium, potassium, and sodium. When I was first introduced to Laneige, I was told it is targeted for those in their 20s and early 30s.

 

The Packaging

As you can see in the top picture, there is an illustration on the box. This is to indicate the collection is part of the 2013 Waterful Sharing Campaign. Laneige had partnered up with Save the Children where part of the proceeds from the sales of the Water Bank line are donated to them. This is true for sales that occur in Korea, but I’m not sure if that is the case for sales outside of that country. There is no difference to the product itself, except for a cute little water pump illustration on the cap or pot.

There is also a small white paddle that is included so that you can scrape every last bit out of the pot. Sanitary point!

 

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream (CND ver) - box and jar
Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream – North American version

The North American version has a slightly different jar design, but it also comes with a little paddle (this one is clear).

 

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream - inner lid
Inner seal – asian version

Another bonus sanitary point is for the inner seal. After unscrewing the cap, you see an inner lid with a tab, but that tab is sealed tight to the pot. This ensures that the product has not been tampered with after production.

 

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream (CND ver) - inner seal
Inner seal –  North American version

The North American version is exactly the same as its asian counterpart.

 

The Product

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream - product
Gel cream – asian version

My pot contained 50ml of product. The cream itself has a gel-like consistency, with an opaque whiteness to it. It’s cool and refreshing, and absorbs easily. It’s difficult to discern the fragrance, but it is light and very pleasant with some floral notes.

 

Laneige Water Bank Gel Cream (CND ver) - product
Gel cream – North American version

Yup, still the same.

 

The Verdict

I absolutely love this gel cream and would definitely purchase it again. I have used two jars of the asian version, and now have a jar of the North American version (courtesy of Influenster for testing purposes). My skin is well hydrated and I haven’t seen any dry skin ever since I started using the line. I highly recommend it!

 

Where to Buy – $42 CAD

Written by Jessica

October 1st, 2015 at 4:41 pm

Laneige Light Balancing Emulsion

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Laneige Balancing Emulsion in Light - bottle

Bottle

I love love love Laneige products. The sales lady had told me the Light line is best for summer time when skin tends to be more oily because of the humidity. When I peeked at the official website, it states it’s made for those with oily/combination skin. This is known as Balancing Emulsion in both Asia and in North America. The one I’m reviewing is from Asia.

 

The Packaging

Laneige Balancing Emulsion in Light - lid and pump
Nozzle

The bottle and cap is made of sturdy plastic, and fits nicely in your hand.

 

Laneige Balancing Emulsion in Light - pump
Pump mechanism

The pump mechanism consists of a push top with a small white tube which the product is dispensed from. I find 2 pumps is enough for my whole face and neck.

 

The Product

Laneige Balancing Emulsion in Light - swatch
Swatch

Like with all Laneige products, the scent is nice and not too heavy.  I adore the smell of Laneige products, but those with very sensitive noses may not like it. The emulsion is lighter than a lotion, but it means that it spreads very easily and absorbs readily. Unfortunately for me, these winter months have caused my skin to dry considerably, so the emulsion is not enough for my skin. I’ve been pairing it with Laneige Water Sleeping Pack EX, and it’s giving me great hydration overnight.

 

The Verdict

I feel this would be great to use during the summer months, but it doesn’t offer enough hydration for me for winter. Those with oily skin may benefit from this though. I’m likely going to squirrel this away until it gets warmer, and switch to something more hydrating for these cold months.

 

Where to Buy

Written by Jessica

September 20th, 2015 at 10:43 am

Posted in Beauty,face,skincare

Laneige Light Power Essential Skin Refiner

with one comment

Laneige Power Essential Skin Refiner in Light - bottle
Pretty bottle

I’ve been a fan of Laneige products for a long time and snagged the Light line as part of a set a couple summers ago. It’s part of their oily-combination skin line, which is perfect for me during the summer months. This is the Power Essential Skin Refiner (known as Power Essential Skin Toner in North America). The one I’m reviewing is from Asia.

 

The Packaging

The bottle is made of sturdy plastic, is clear with a bluish tint to it. The cap is the twist kind.

Laneige Power Essential Skin Refiner in Light - inner seal
Silver foil covering the opening

Removing the cap, you can see a small silver foil sealing the opening to the bottle. Bonus points to Laneige for sanitary packaging.

 

Laneige Power Essential Skin Refiner in Light - nozzle
Foil removed, small opening

After taking the foil off, it reveals a small opening. I prefer these small openings as it allows me to control the amount of product that comes out instead of accidentally pouring too much out.

 

The Product

I use this as a toner after cleansing my face. It has a light, pleasant scent to it and isn’t overbearing at all. There is no sensation using it per say (as in there is no cooling or tingling sensation) and I find that it doesn’t irritate my skin. My serums and moisturizers soak in quite well afterwards.

 

The Verdict

Using this in combination with the Light Balancing Emulsion made for a great combination over the summer. It won’t be enough moisturizing for those with dry skin or for the winter months, but summer use is great.

 

Where to Buy

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Written by Jessica

September 18th, 2015 at 9:40 pm

Posted in Beauty,face,skincare