Saturday, 6 October 2018

Mid to Late Summer 2018 Empties

Here we are, another empties post. I have so many things that I am scraping the bottom of that I hope the next empties installment will be quite something. I have 3 other non-empties posts that I hope to do soon too. 

Without further ado.....

Seventh Generation Hibiscus and Cardamom Natural Hand Wash - Ok, ok I know I am beating the hand wash thing to death but I thought this one might be worth mentioning. I thought this was going to smell terrible but it smelt really good and not overpowering. My only complaint about these Seventh Generation ones is that you go through them so fast!

Bumble and Bumble Bb Thickening Full Form Mousse - This is one of the best mousses I have ever used. I'm still looking for that holy grail, but this one should be tried. I bought it at an Estee Lauder/MAC sale for a fraction of the retail price which is good because it is very pricey. I think I have another one kicking around here. Just have to find it....

Klorane Floral Water Make-Up Remover - Love it. Take your Bioderma and just pitch it out now.....countless bottles purchased and finished. (review here)

The Green Beaver Company Foaming Hand Soap in Fresh Mint - I am going to keep this very real right now. This stuff was terrible! It's clear in the bottle but it turns green when it dries out of the bottle. It's a sappy, sticky mess that oozes out of whatever container you have it in. A total nightmare to clean. Hated it. Oh it's green alright! Gremlin sludge! Smelt too much like toothpaste as well.  Never foamed once. WTF??? Yuck! Never again. 

MAC Jest Eyeshadow - I think this may be the first pot of Jest that I ever owned. I think I have 2 more Jest eyeshadows in pro refill format. I finally finished it. This is by far one of my favourite MAC eyeshadow colours ever. Let another round of Back to MAC begin! 

Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask - Love this...I've gone through countless tubes of these. Already repurchased two more. It's this or bust for me when winter hits. Holy Grail product for sure. (review here

Shiseido Facial Cotton - It's expensive for what it is, but worth every penny. Best facial cotton ever. Can't go back to drug store cotton rounds ever again. 

Estee Lauder Advanced Time Zone - Not a bad moisturizer at all. Not my fave but hey it came with a gwp so I'll use it when I want a change. 

Estee Lauder DayWear - Also not a bad moisturizer. Works well for the summer. It was with a gwp also. (review here)

Aveeno Intense Relief Hand Cream - One of my new favourites. I keep one of these on my desk at work. Already repurchased. By far, one of the best Aveeno products. 

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Conditioner - This was a small travel sized sample - good for travel. I was ok but the 5-in-1 styling treatment Living Proof has is still the best. 

Origins Plantscription - Countless tubes I have had....more will be purchased. 

Moroccanoil Extra Volume Shampoo - I had this bottle forever! Decided it was time to finish it. It was decent shampoo but I wasn't over the moon about it and I didn't overly love the smell. 

That's it for now. Lots of makeup items coming in next empties post! 

Sunday, 26 August 2018

Estee Lauder Double Wear Nude Water Fresh Makeup in 2C3 Fresco - Review

Okay so as some of you may know, Estee Lauder discontinued their Double Wear Light foundation a number of months ago. I snatched up what I could find on the market. I still have a few drops left in one tube. This has been my go-to foundation for several years and I was not very happy about it. I wore shade 2.0. Estee Lauder is scheduled to come out with a new version of Double Wear Light any minute now. I believe Ulta in the U.S. is already carrying it. Friends, I am nervous. There are very mixed reviews on the new version and some are very disheartening. All agree, it ain't the same stuff.

So while I suffer waiting to see if the new version is any good at all, an Estee Lauder rep recommended I try this - Estee Lauder Double Wear Nude Water Fresh Makeup. Right away I knew I was going to be disappointed because as soon as I hear the word "nude" I think coverage will be crap, but what is a girl to do? First things first. The shades do not match the regular Double Wear foundation even though the shade names are the same. Say what??? That's right. I wear 2N1 Desert Beige in the regular Double Wear line and in this line, the "Nude" line, it's way lighter. So I had to settle for 2C3 Fresco which is a tad too pink for my taste but the colour will match my skin well enough in a pinch. Disappointment #1.

The Estee Lauder rep warned me that this product is very watery, runny. Oh brother, here we go I thought. She didn't lie. Better apply it fast because it will make it's way down you face in a hurry otherwise. For whatever it is worth, the reviews online are not good and people seem to take particular exception to the wateriness of this product saying it's a hot mess to even keep the bottle clean whether they have a pump or not. However, I have had no issues keeping my bottle clean and I am not using a pump yet. Of course, I have been super careful with this bottle knowing the warnings. Disappointment #2.

Let's talk about the coverage. I knew immediately before I even put it on my face that I was not going to be happy with the coverage given the name and how watery it is. I would say this is a hair better than light coverage maybe even I could say light to medium coverage. For my taste, and given my botchy skin, this coverage isn't going to cut it. To my mind, Double Wear Light was medium coverage and that stuff stayed on all day! I will say that I made this stuff work as I took it on vacation to the Caribbean and man is it hot there in July. It did move around my face but if I wore a primer under it, that seemed to help immensely. That also helped with the coverage issue. I don't want to have to fuss so much though with my foundation to "make it work". At least it blends easily but it doesn't "stick" to the skin as much as I would like. It kind of floats on it. Disappointment #3.

This product has SPF 30. Was this good to have on vacation? Yes. Is it good for pictures? Hell no. Do I want SPF in my daily foundation? No. I am not an outdoorsy gal so sorry I don't need SPF in my daily skincare regime. Disappointment #4.

When I touch my face while wearing it, it comes off on my hand. Doesn't matter how many hours I've had it on. I hate that. I have to keep my hands from my face while I have this on. Disappointment #5.

Will I finish this bottle? Yes, because it cost a good chunk of change and I can use it here and there. It was $48 Canadian or it's $42 U.S. As a side note, I have gone and bought the regular Double Wear formula to use in the meantime until Double Wear Light resurfaces. The regular Double Wear is a bit too heavy and full coverage for my daily needs but I think if I mix it with some Estee Lauder BB cream, we may be ok.

In summary, Estee Lauder Double Wear Nude Water Fresh Makeup isn't as terrible as some people make it seem, you can make it work. I can understand the hate though. I will definitely not be repurchasing. I am a little mystified why Estee Lauder even has this on the market. There are so many boxes it doesn't tick. But hey, at least it's in glass. Estee Lauder normally make such solid products. This one is a bit of a dud.

Packaging: 10/10  (it's glass)  
Pigmentation: 6.5/10 
Easy to Work With: 5/10 
Longevity: 4/10 
Texture: 5/10 (watery) 
Price: 5/10 for what it is
Ingredients: 8/10 
Travel Worthy: 8.5/10 
Attractiveness of Product: 6/10
Would I buy this again? NO
Overall Rating: 6/10

Monday, 6 August 2018

Late Spring/Early Summer Empties 2018

Hello! My empties are piling up again so it's that time to do an empties post. I already have a few items set aside for my "Summer Empties" post so stay tuned for that. I have to do a review in the next day or two about a new Estee Lauder foundation and I have a lot to say about it, so that is up next.. Let's dive in.

A La Maison de Provence Citrus Blossom and Sweet Almond Liquid Soap - I've said it before and I will say it again, I don't tend to post about my hand soap or bar soap empties. I go through a lot of soap and it's just not really an interesting topic I find in terms of makeup and beauty empties. I really like this brand though and I plowed through two bottles over the last little while. I bought these at Marshalls/Winners for $7.99 Canadian. They smell nice (natural) and do a good job. I would definitely repurchase.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Sheer Hydration Lotion - I have really started getting into Aveeno and I have a review and an interesting story to share with you very soon about one of their lotions. This is not the particular lotion that I speak of. Anyway, I find that I am loving some Aveeno lotions but others are meh. This was a meh. I found it did not absorb well, was not very hydrating, and was very light, too light of a moisturizer for me. I would not repurchase this particular Aveeno product.

Seventh Generation Mandarin Orange & Grapefruit Natural Hand Wash - Are we sick of talking about hand wash yet? Haha. This is another of my favourite hand soaps. My only complain at these Seventh Generation ones is that you go through them so fast! If you get a deal though you can buy them for like $3.50 Canadian so it pays to shop around or wait for a sale. I believe Amazon sells these as an add on item for chump change sometimes. Anyway, already repurchased 3!

Nutrafix Hair Reconstructor Giovanni Eco Chic Hair Care - I bought this at Winners on a whim. I've never seen this brand before and I've never seen it since. It worked well! I would consider buying it again. Very moisturizing!

L'Occitane en Provence Dry Skin Foot Cream - I have gone through countless tubes of these. One of the best foot creams on the market, hands down. Already repurchased. If you haven't tried this, you need to get on that already.

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair - Another free sample done. I will purchase the full sized version one of these days but I keep getting them in my gift with purchase. 

Estee Lauder Double Wear Light Foundation - Used dozens, my go-to and discontinued for now...ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. We will discuss this week for sure my friends. 

Murad Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 30 - I got this in a set. Might have been a Sephora rewards set. Super handy for travel. It has SPF and it was moisturizing with it being anti-acne at the same time. I don't feel that I got a true sense of what it could do for me based on such a small tube but while I used it, I would say it was decent. May repurchase but I have a bunch of other moisturizers to give a try to first I think. 

Estee Lauder Double Wear Zero-Smudge Lengthening Mascara - The one and only smudge proof mascara. This is my "work" mascara as it does the job and lasts all day but it's not lashes galore. Already repurchased. Wish it wasn't so pricey though. 

Neutrogena All-in-One Make-Up Removing Wipes - I don't understand why this is a cult favourite. It can burn a bit around the eyes and it does not remove all of my makeup. I always have tons more coming off when I wash my face right after. I am not crazy about the smell either. I don't plan on repurchasing. I used them for travel. 

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Flawless Wear Concealer - Love this. My shade is 2C Light Medium. I use it all the time. Blends perfectly with my foundation. Already repurchased. 

Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Cream - I have gone through numerous tubes of this. I will definitely repurchase. I am trying something else right now which I will report on soon. Felt like a change.

Estee Lauder Perfectly Clean Multi-Action Foam Cleanser/Purifying Mask - I finished a tube of this while I was travelling and I didn't want to drag it back home. So I took a picture before I chucked it. Pic is below. I really like this stuff. I have bought the full sized version before and I will likely do so again. Your skin feels really clean afterwards. Highly recommend this. 

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector - Review

This product comes highly recommended by a lot of bloggers and critics so I bought it. I haven't been taking my facial sunscreen seriously enough and I'm getting older so it's high time I did. I have to say I'm really happy with my purchase. What I like the most about it is that it absorbs quickly and it's easy to work with. Not all facial sunscreens are. It looks great under my makeup. It doesn't have much of a smell which is a good thing. I don't feel like I added another layer to my face - another plus.

The bottle is small, convenient and damn cute. Also the product is water resistant up to 40 minutes. This sunscreen is a definite keeper. My only complaint is that it's pricey at $40 Canadian for 30 ml. It's worth it though considering it's not a product I need every day as I'm not the outdoorsy type. Perfect for taking on vacation.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask - Review

The ends of my hair have been looking fried lately and I am not due to go to my hair dresser for another week. I had a few samples of this product lying around so I thought what the hell, I'll give this a shot. My mind was actually blown by how bad this product was for me. I think perhaps if you have poker straight hair and you are looking for some volume and softness you might really like this product. If you have curly, frizzy, unmanageable hair, please pass and move on.

The only pro that I found for myself personally was that my hair was left feeling super soft. Very silken. Did it look that way? Uh no. My hair seriously looked like I stuck my finger in a light socket. I let my hair air dry and pinned it up. When it was dry I combed it out and it was frizzy like I have never seen before. Totally bananas. I proceeded to attack my hair with product and a curling iron. I got my hair under control or so I thought. My hair was like a big swirling mess of electrified cotton candy after about an hour. I attacked it later with a straightening iron. It was better but man when I brushed my hair it looked completely fried - insane. Hair still felt soft though!

After using this my hair looked 100 times worse than it did before I used it. Brutal. I will not be purchasing that is for sure and now I have all of these spare samples lying around. As a side note, I once tried a sample of a hair gel that Briogeo makes and my hair was also a huge frizz bomb after using it. I just don't think their products are meant for people that have anything other than straight hair. Not sure how this product is an award winner.

Packaging: 8/10
Easy to Work With: 8/10 (at application sure) after the fact 0/10
Longevity: not sure what to say softness remained and frizz had major longevity  
Texture: 0/10 (my hair that is) 
Price: 0/10 
Ingredients: 8/10 
Comfort: 0/10 fried cotton candy is not comfortable on one's head 
Attractiveness of Product: 0/10 
Would I buy this again? Didn't the first time and sure won't in the future 
Overall Rating: 0/10 for me anyway 

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

March/April Empties 2018

Okay, where to start? I have a few hair care products this month and you may have noticed I haven't had much in the way of hair care product empties lately. I stopped using Wen several months ago after the scandal and I was also sick of it. So I have been dusting off some older bottles of stuff and trying a few new ones. Let's get to it.

Pantene Daily Moisture Renewal Complete Therapy Conditioner - this bottle was ancient! Decided I wanted to finish it. It's the old packing too and I think they have changed the name and the smell etc. For drug store conditioner, this is probably as good as it gets. Not my fave, but it will do in a pinch! I have repurchased other Pantene conditioners to try in its place.

Aveda Invati Exfoliating Shampoo - Bought this on a whim. Man I used to love Aveda and I think I may return to it. I am not losing hair but it is overall thinner than it used to be. The reviews were good so I thought, "what the heck". It does make a difference, even my hairdresser noticed. This stuff is expensive though! Ouch. I have tried the conditioner that goes with it and I don't find it does much for me except tangle my hair. If I use the shampoo alone, my hair is easier to comb out. Go figure. I have repurchased and I am currently using it. Just trying to figure out what is the best conditioner to use with it.

Aveda Invati Thickening Conditioner - Please see comment above. Meh. Will not repurchase, however, I have a few travel samples and such to use up in my stash of this.

Alterna Bamboo Smooth Anti-Breakage Thermal Protectant Spray - I think I need to give Alterna products some more attention. This was a great product with the exception of the packaging. The spray went everywhere when I could get it out of the nozzle. The product is thick and I found it easier to spray into my hand and then apply it. Seriously. I had this bottle forever. Got my money's worth. May repurchase, have not decided yet. (review here)

Nivea Express Hydration Body Lotion - As good as the drug store gets. Would and have repurchased.

Klorane Floral Water Make-Up Remover - Love it. You can keep your Bioderma. Countless bottles purchased and finished. (review here)

Estee Lauder Nightwear Plus - It was ok. Got it in a gwp. Would not repurchase. Not Estee Lauder's finest.

Origins Eye Doctor - I can't find anything else that compares. So another one done. I just wish it did more for dark circles.

Tarte Park Ave Princess Bronzer - This is hands down my favourite bronzer. This was a smaller version or travel size I think. It lasted forever and has been around the world with me. I have several replacements including stand alone versions and some within palettes.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Light Foundation - Used dozens, my go-to.

Clarins Instant Concealer 02 - This lasted me longer than I care to say and I used it a lot. I mostly used it under the eyes if I am wearing glasses but it is not enough on its own if I am not wearing glasses. There is something unique about it. I would consider repurchasing. I imagine for many people this might be all you need in a concealer.

Amore Pacific Future Response Age Defense Serum - I feel like I used this up ages ago and forgot to put it in my empties bin. It was just a trial size. It didn't wow me. I reminded me of the poorer cousin to Clinique's Smart Custom-Repair Serum.

So that's it! I have some makeup remover products and hair products coming up soon for review.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Sephora Lashcraft Big Volume Mascara - Review

I bought this last Fall during the Sephora sale I believe. The regular price is $18 Canadian or $14 U.S. The tube is huge! Ridiculous actually. It reminds me of Benefit's BADgal lash mascara in terms of size. The mascara wand itself is an interesting shape - hourglass (see picture below). The wand is also a bit big for my taste and my smallish eyes. 

When you first apply the product is goes on smoothly and with a little effort you get good results - decent volume and decent length. Better than most drug store mascaras! I haven't noticed any flaking and minimal smudging with this mascara. My only real complaint about the product other than the massive size of the tube is that I find it constricts or shrinks if you will my lashes after the product has dried and the issue seems to get worse as the day or night, as the case may be, progresses. It's like it shrinks but curls your lashes. Weird. This is a deal breaker for me I am afraid. I won't be repurchasing as a result. 

Believe it or not, even with the "shrinkage" issue it's still a better mascara than most that are on the market in my opinion! Maybe if you already have long lashes you won't notice this issue as much as I do. It is a nice black colour - I have 01 noir. Not jet black but not dull either. A nice rich black. 

Packaging: 4/10
Pigmentation: 10/10
Easy to Work With: 8/10 (at application but wand is big) 
Longevity: 2/10 due to serious shrinkage of lashes! 
Texture: 9/10 
Price: 6.5/10 
Ingredients: ? threw out clear wrapper that I couldn't read 
Comfort: 8/10 lightweight 
Travel Worthy: 2/10 big
Smudge Proof: 8/10
Flake and Clump Proof: 9/10
Attractiveness of Product: 4/10 after a few hours of wear and tear 
Would I buy this again? NO 
Overall Rating: 6.5/10