Thursday, August 30, 2018

recent beauty empties

Over the past few months, I've used up quite a few products, and wanted to share  my thoughts on them! I firmly believe that initial impressions aren't sharing the full story, but continued use lets me give a more thorough and honest review of the product. There were several items, including my beloved eyeliner and mascara primer, that I've already reviewed so many times that it wasn't worth mentioning again, but there are quite a few new products I've used up and wanted to share my thoughts! I also wanted to mention that Sephora's semi-annual VIB sale is coming up, so I shared my purchased at the bottom of the post!

Moroccainoil Hair Mask // I feel I am always looking for the new best hair mask to convert my thinner frizzier, bleached hair into a thick luxurious head of hair. I have yet to find a mask that I absolutely love and buy again and again. The reviews for this argon oil-infused mask are extremely positive, so I was very excited to give it a try. The thing to note about this product is that it's intended to me a mask that requires you to use a conditioner after - usually I just use a heavy duty conditioner as a type of mask, so I'm not really sure what differs in this mask, but I did notice that I did need a conditioner after using the mask as my hair wasn't detangled enough after using just the mask. I just didn't notice that much of a difference! Maybe my expectations are too high, but I did not see a difference between this $40+ mask and the deep conditioners I buy in the cheaper aisle at Target. So for me, it isn't something that I'm going to repurchase. It smells nice, my hair may have been a bit softer, but I just don't think I noticed so much of a difference that I'd buy it again.

Drunk Elephant Marula Oil // Last fall I received the most amazing PR package from Drunk Elephant that included all of their products. It was amazing! I exclusively used their products for a good six months until I started to run out of their products. One of the first items that I used up is their Marula oil. I've been getting more and more into facial oils over the past few years, and have transitioned from argon ails to rosehip oils to now marula oil. The marula oil has been my favorite as it's extremely hydrating without feeling as slippery as the other oils did. My skin has had no flaking or issues with dry patches since I started using this oil! I use it at night, after a night time serum but before a moisturizer. I've tried a few more inexpensive versions, but truly think that the Drunk Elephant version is the best I've used - it's just a bit thicker, and feels better on my skin. For those of you trying to use more clean make-up, this virgin Marula oil is 100% marula oil without added ingredients, so it's especially great for those of us with more sensitive skin. If you have drier skin, this oil has made such a difference for me that I can't even imagine not using it. I've repurchased this with my own money and very much believe in this product. 

L'Oreal Ever Pure Balm (and shampoo) // I'm a big big fan of the Ever Pure line from L'Oreal. I've been using this line for at least four years now, as the sulfate-free products are inexpensive and work super well. Their marula oil frizz fighting conditioner is currently my go-to, and I recently tried out the above repair balm. For $8 (compared to the $40 above), this product worked actually pretty well at making my hair softer and helping with the frizziness I have around my crown. Who can actually say if it's repairing my hair (after all, hair's dead sooooo how much you're going to repair that is really hard to say), but it made it feel soft, and that's worth something.

 Fresh - Sugar Face Exfoliator
Fresh Sugar Face Polish // Just like the perfect deep conditioner, I feel I've been looking for the perfect face scrub for my entire life. You know, what that makes my skin feel perfectly smooth, non-irritated, and brand new. Maybe my expectations of topical products is just too high! ;) This scrub is nice, but not life changing. It smells amazing - if you are a fan of the fresh chapsticks, then you will love the scent of this scrub. But I didn't feel it really that much, I just enjoyed using it because it smelled nice and my skin felt a bit softer after. For $20 you can buy the mini size like I did if you want to give a try because it is a nice feeling mask, I just won't be repurchasing it. 

 drunk elephant babyfacial review
Drunk Elephant Babyfacial // A week before I received above mentioned package, I actually purchased the Drunk Elephant Babyfacial. You guys know I'm all about the at home facials, and try to do at least one a week. I've had several friends rave about it, so I was excited to give it a try as the first step in my little facial routine. Call me converted, because I really like this product. First of all, even though the container doesn't seem that big, it lasts quite a long time - I think I did at least 15 facials with this. It stings slightly when it's first applied, but that doesn't last long. I kept it on for about 15-20 minutes, but definitely could have stayed on longer since after the first few minutes it didn't bother me at all. After use, my skin felt softer, and the blemishes I had always seemed smaller and less angry. I think sometimes it's hard to review how well skin care products work, because it's hard to quantify how something make your skin feel, but I do think this product is worth it, and I would definitely purchase it again with my own money. 

Bobbi Brown's Lip Tint // I've used a ton of those "uses the pH of your lips to make the perfect lip product" balms and glosses, and I never really loved them. I always felt they made your lips just a bit too bright pink. All I ever want is a "my lips but better" balm that gives my lips a bit of color, feels good, and moisturizing...and that's exactly what Bobbi Brown's lip tint is. This is actually a fake empty because I thought I lost it at work, and immediately repurchased it....and then the following week I found it under our bed at work! So while technically not an empty, I liked it so much I repurchased it. It is definitely pricy, but I only use it once or twice a day, and it's been holding up well as you don't need much to get the effect. Love love love this product! 

Paula's Choice SPF // I'm ashamed to admit that until a few years ago, I did not regularly wear sunscreen. It wasn't until I was reading an article about the best anti-aging products out there that it clicked that the best anti-aging product is sunscreen...DUH. Since then I've been religiously using sunscreen. The issues I had with sunscreens in the past is that they all felt slimy and cakey on. I don't remember how I even found this sunscreen but I absolutely love it - this is my second bottle! I have a bottle of The Treatment's SPF that I'm going to use up next, but I will definitely repurchase the Paula's Choice in the future. Anti-aging, anti-skin cancer, and it feels nice on the skin and under makeup? win win win. 

Dior BB Cream // One of my really good girlfriends started using this Dior BB cream towards the end of medical school, and her skin always look so smooth and even but natural and not cakey. She finally spilled the beans on her secret, and it was this Dior BB cream. I immediately order the above container, and have used it since then....which if you are counting, is over 14 months ago! This small tube lasted me so so fact, I probably still have a few days left in the one above! Pros for this are the even light coverage, built in SPF,  hydration, and durability. Definite cons are the huge lack of colors - it only comes in three colors! I wear luminous beige, and it works well for my pale skin, but it definitely could stand to come in more colors. I actually repurchased this already during the last VIB sale, and I still haven't had to open it since this lasts so so long. Very happy with how well it works for me!

 oribe texturizing spray
Oribe Texturizing Spray // One of my all time favorite products! I have quite thin hair follicles, just a lot of them, so my hair can appear thicker with help, but without any product or teasing, my hair is straight, frizzy on the ends, and limp. This texturizing spray helps build that volume that I want without teasing it to the high heavens. I've tried a few different texturizing sprays over the years, and this one is by far my favorite. It doesn't make my hair feel super sticky or heavy, it just blows a little life into it. It's pricy, so I only use a bit on my crown, but that's enough to get my hair to look a bit thicker. I've repurchased this several times, and have already started using the bottle I bought during the recent Nordstrom sale. If you too have thinner, flat hair, this bottle will become your hair best friend!

This week, Sephora's having their Beauty Insider sale, where VIBs and insiders can take 20% off their purchase! This sale only happens a few times a year, and I always take advantage of them by stocking up on my favorites. This time around I got my favorite Stila eyeliner, my holy grail powder,  and the best dry shampoo (and I've tried just about all of them). I'm trying out Kiehl's Vitamin C serum (Grace raves about it!), a new primer, and a new mascara (always hunting for the new best thing!). Do you have your eye on anything? Would love to hear your recommendations!