Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Empties Post Volume XLVI: July & August 2016

Press Sample, Purchased & GWP (Affiliate Links)

I was so busy during the month of July that I didn't have a moment to do my empties post, and therefore I consolidated two months into a single feature. The first two pictures represent the products that I finished up in the month of July, and the third picture is all of my empties from August. There is no question that I have been making a real concerted effort to finish up partially used (or mostly used) products, but I can't believe that I finished so many products in two months! 

Perlier Honey Royal Elixir Facial Serum (Reviewed HERE): This lightweight anti-aging serum has a very creamy consistency, but it sinks into the skin quickly and definitely leaves it feeling very moisturized. It has a very light scent that seems to be a combination of the honey and the Rosa Centifolia Flower Water, yet it does seem to fade after a few minutes. What I do find surprising is the fact that Perlier opted to include a micro-shimmer in this serum-- presumably to impart a diffused radiant glow. While it has a barely-there appearance on the skin, it does indeed give the complexion a lovely ethereal glowing quality. 

B. Kamins Nia-Stem Eye Cream KX (Reviewed HERE): B. Kamins Nia-Stem Eye Cream Kx is a lovely and deeply hydrating eye cream that is as effective as it is pleasant to use. The texture is light, creamy, and emollient- and yet it absorbs into the delicate skin around the eyes quickly leaving behind soft, supple, and hydrated skin. It has a lifting and brightening effect that diminishes the appearance of fine lines, and leaves the skin silky smooth. Any under eye puffiness is radically reduced, and dark circles are considerably diminished. My bottle was quite old and was losing efficacy, but it was basically empty,

Radical Multi Brightening Serum: I need to use it longer to see any effects, but I am a huge fan of Radical's serums!

Revive Moisture Serum Extreme: While I really liked the consistency and fast absorption of this this serum– the sample was too small to either formulate an opinion, or to see any results.

Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser: This deluxe sample lived in my shower for a while, and I liked it enough to use it up, but I didn't have enough time with it to say anything more meaningful than that.

Dermalogica PreCleanse Wipes (Reviewed HERE): Unlike many of the facial wipes that I have tried, these do not feel water-based to the extent that the others do. The PreCleanse Wipes are neither dripping with fluid, nor are do they require pulling and tugging the skin in order to remove makeup. Instead, theses oil-infused wipes effortlessly lift makeup and impurities with no effort whatsoever, and they leave skin soft rather than stripped. There is no need to tug or pull, but instead the ingredients do all of the work to remove every trace of makeup– you simply wipe away the dirt and makeup. Furthermore, these wipes remove every trace of makeup, and they do not irritate my super sensitive eyes.

TOM FORD Black Orchid: I love this scent for the fall and winter, and bought a full size bottle. I will get around to reviewing it at some point, but I really do love its richness and depth.

TOM FORD Private Blend CafĂ© Rose Eau de Parfum ($220.00 for 1.7 oz., $300 for 3.4 oz. and $535.00 for 8.4 oz. from NordstromBloomingdale'sSephoraBergdorf Goodman, and Neiman Marcus): I loved this scent so much that I purchased a 3.4 oz. bottle that makes me deliriously happy. It is a warm and exotic rose that is so fetching that I basque in it every chance that I get!
HASK Kalahari Oil Color Protection Deep Conditioner (Reviewed HERE $5.99 for 6 oz. from UltaTarget and Walgreens): I really love using deep conditioning hair masks, and find them to be an essential part of caring for color-treated hair. Kalahari Melon Oil Color Protection Deep Conditioner is an ultra-nourishing deep conditioner that leaves hair soft, shiny, manageable, deeply conditioned, and it extends the life of hair color.

Beauty and the Bees Tasmanian Real Beer Conditioner Bar (Reviewed HERE): is a very concentrated 100% natural conditioner that not only does an excellent job conditioning the hair, but it also leaves it soft and incredibly shiny! My nervousness at the thought of using a bar conditioner quickly abated when I felt how moisturized and detangled it left my hair, and that is to say nothing of the fact that my hair was left unbelievably soft, conditioned, and with glossy curls. That said, this is a very concentrated formula, and it is easy to overdo it. Beauty and the Bees suggests that less is definitely more, and I completely agree. Using a small amount delivers big results-- so avoid the temptation to use a lot!

Dewberry Lotion for Hands, Face and Body (Reviewed HERE from Dewberry): Dewberry Lotion is a gluten free hand, face and body lotion that contains Rose Oil, Beta Glucan and Hyaluronic Acid to offer skin fantastic hydration. Dewberry Lotion is a 100% certified gluten-free, paraben-free and hypoallergenic safe alternative for those who need to be mindful of the ingredients that they use.  Dewberry states that their lotion was "developed and manufactured using the latest skin care technology and natural ingredients including Beta Glucan, Rose Oil and Hyaluronic Acid."

Zero Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner packets: There wasn't enough product for me to be able to determine whether they worked well for me.

Everyday Shea Hand Soap in Lemon Verbena (Reviewed HERE): This is one of those hand soaps that I will repurchase as long as Everyday Shea makes it! It has the delectable scent of Lemon Verbena, and it leaves hands soft and hydrated.

Surya Brasil Sapien Women Shave Gel (Reviewed HERE $20.39 for 6.76 oz. from Surya Brasil) This remains my holy grail shaving gel because it is ultra hydrating, it has a delectable tropical scent, and it gives me the closest shave imaginable. It is gentle and nourishing, and such an amazing addition to my shower product line-up. In fact, this is such a great shave gel that my husband uses it for shaving every single day.

Rituals Fortune Oil Sweet Orange & Cedar Wood Caring Shower Oil (Reviewed HERE $15.00 for 6.7 oz. from RITUALS and Amazon): RITUALS Fortune Oil Sweet Orange & Cedar Wood from the Laughing Buddha Collection is a wonderfully moisturizing shower oil for the body that functions in precisely the same way as the many facial cleansing oils that have recently flooded the market. This particular scent seems to be rather hard to come by, but I have used several of their shower oils and they are all stupendous. I thought that I had another bottle somewhere, but can't seem to find it.

Cocoa Brown Tough Stuff Body Scrub: I really liked this scrub a lot. It really left my skin loft and smooth without stripping it.

Swipe Single Use Deodorant Wipes (Reviewed HERE $8.00 for 10 from Swipe and Urbanoutfitters): These are handy, ultra-portable, single-use disposable deodorant wipes. They are made with tea tree extract to deodorize. Each pre-moistened wipe is individually wrapped, and can stow away in your pocket. While this is not the type of thing that I would use on a regular basis, it is perfect for super hot days when you are out and about.
Sienna Naturals Bath & Body Shampoo: The deluxe sample didn't give me enough time with the product to formulate a real opinion.

OGX Healing + Vitamin E Shampoo (Reviewed HERE $7.99 for 13 oz. from Drugstore.comTarget and Walgreens): is non-stripping and SLS-free, and leaves my hair feeling hydrated. I really likes this shampoo and it's conditioner a lot. I would definitely use them again.

Nature's Gate Vegan Conditioner Moisturizing Aloe and Macadamia Oil (Reviewed HERE $6.99-$7.99 for 18 oz. from WalgreensDrugstore.comAmazon): If you seek a moisturizing conditioner that nourishes and hydrates without weighing down your hair, then this is a great choice. It has a light fresh scent that is uplifting and pleasant, but it does fade away. I thought that it might not provide enough moisture for my dry hair, but was pleasantly surprised that it left my hair soft, manageable, frizz-free and perfectly hydrated.

Key West Aloe Aloethera Body Wash (Reviewed HERE $16.00 for 8 oz. from Key West Aloe and Birchbox): This is one of my favorite shower gels because it smells fresh and clean, has a nice lather, and it leaves my skin luxuriously soft, smooth and hydrated. I love using it with a loofa to exfoliate and stimulate my skin, and the result is always velvety soft skin. It is very gentle on the skin, and is free of synthetic dyes. When I need another shower gel, this will definitely be on my list.

Mirai Clinical Body Wash (Reviewed HERE $29.00 for 10.5 oz. from Mirai Clinical Formula and Joyus): I have never tried a purifying and deodorizing body wash before, but what a brilliant concept for the long days of summer fun in the sun! This is especially great for washing feet, and if you wear your tennis shoes without socks during the warm months you will really notice a difference. It has a very light grapefruit scent that is barely detectable.

Savannah Bee Body Wash (Reviewed HERE): Savannah Bee Body Wash is gentle on the skin and it exfoliates dead skin cells without irritation, and it leaves the skin silky smooth. I also like to use it for shaving! I would definitely like a full size bottle!

Lifetherapy Escape Hand & Body Wash (Reviewed HERE $24.00 for 12 oz. from Lifetherapy and Open Sky): This non-stripping hand and body wash leaves skin moisturized, soft, and supple. The fragrance fills the shower and thankfully lingers in the air for a while so that the enjoyment doesn't end when you finish showering. This also works beautifully for shaving legs and underarms!

Mio Double Buff Dual Action Enzyme Exfoliator: I absolutely love this scrub! In fact, I need a full size tube since this deluxe sample was not enough!

Le Couvent des Minimes Exfoliating Shower Pulp (Reviewed HERE $12.00 for 6.7 oz. from Le Couvent des MinimesUlta, b-glowing and Beauty.com): If you love the delectable scent of Orange Blossoms, then Le Couvent des Minimes Exfoliating Shower Pulp is an absolute must-have. Skin is left silky soft, supple and very hydrated! I need to buy another tube!

Suave Professionals Moroccan Infusion Dry Body Oil Spray (Reviewed HERE): Moroccan Infusion Dry Body Oil Spray has a non-greasy formula that absorbs instantly leaving skin moisturized and soft and silky. It is non-greasy and it gives skin long lasting moisture and radiance.

Kiss My Face Cucumber Green Tea Active Life Deodorant (Reviewed HERE): I absolutely love this deodorant, and have repurchased it more times than I could even begin to count. I have run out, and it is at the top of my grocery list!

RADICAL Skincare Youth Infusion Serum (Reviewed HERE $170.00 for 1 oz. from Radical SkincareBarneys New YorkSpace NKBloomingdale's, Saks Fifth AvenueDermstoreHarrodsQVCBeauty Expert (UK) and Look Fantastic): This is, without question, one of my most reached for serums because it delivers noticeable results. Conceived to rejuvenate aging skin, this serum, which features plant based stem cells, promotes skin cell turnover without drying the skin, and it simultaneously reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Additionally, Algae extract, which boosts collagen production, helps to tighten and lift that has started to become slack. Hyaluronic Acid hydrates the skin and plumps fine lines, while Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice soothes irritated and inflamed skin. The result is ultra-hydrated skin with vastly improved moisture retention, with overall improved skin tone, noticeably lifted skin, and the diminishment in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Furthermore, I noted that my skin was far more radiant, soft and supple.

Arbonne RE9 Advanced Regenerating Toner (Reviewed HERE): If you have been seeking to add a toner into your skincare routine, that is gentle enough to be used daily, then Arbonne RE9 Advanced Regenerating Toner is worth your consideration. I don't use toners all of the time, but when I do I tend to gravitate to the alcohol-free variety and I use them less after cleansing, and more to refresh my skin or remove grime toward the end of the day. I also periodically use a gentle toner to remove my makeup (not my eye makeup) when I am too tired to wash my face.

This particular toner feels far from ordinary as it boasts an antioxidant rich formula that is pH-balanced and comes in a convenient spray bottle. The mist-stream isn't fine enough to lightly mist the whole face, but instead is more effective when spritzed into a cotton ball or pad.  It leaves skin feeling refreshed, cleansed, lightly hydrated and lifted. It has a very mild scent that seems to evaporate immediately.

Rodial Pink Diamond Lifting Face Mask (Reviewed HERE $90.00 for 8 masks from Space NK): is an intensely hydrating sheet mask that is formulated to tone, tighten, lift and moisturize the skin.  You simply separate the protective fabric sheet from the bio-cellulose mask and apply the latter to a freshly cleansed face. Rodial generously drenches each mask with an abundance of serum, and there is enough left at the bottom of the packet after I mask that I like to use what remains as a traditional serum for several days following my mask treatment.

Rodial Dragon's Blood Eye Masks (Reviewed HERE): This eye treatment mask formula is a life-saver if you have chronically dry or dehydrated skin under your eyes, or are prone to under-eye puffiness. While my skin isn't dry, I have seen the wondrous benefits of using these eye masks. After as little as 20-30 minutes of use, I immediately noted that my skin was dewy, luminous and unmistakably hydrated. Furthermore, the Arnica Extract works wonders on under-eye puffiness– which I was able to put to the test when I was sleep deprived during Maximus's post-surgical recovery– and I noted a radical reduction in the unsightly puffiness after a single 30 minute masking session!

Colbert MD Tone Control Facial Disks (Reviewed HERE): While I thought that I had achieved exfoliating pad nirvana with the Colbert MD Intensify Facial Disks, I discovered that Colbert MD Tone Control Facial Disks are a whole different level of paradigm shifting exfoliating pads. Not only do these pre-moistened disks provide effective, and gentle, microdermabrasion from the surface texture of the pad, but they also encourage cell turnover that aids in the promotion of collagen production. Skin, unobstructed by a proliferation of dead skin cells, is then able to effortlessly and effectively absorb skincare products. The end result is unbelievably silky soft, smooth, supple and luminous skin. Additionally, Colbert MD Tone Control Facial Disks are saturated with ingredients that even out skin tone, lighten dark spots (hyperpigmentation), soothe redness and brighten the complexion.

Superfine Jojoba packet: Not enough product to be able to review.

There you have it! What did you finish, give away return or toss out in July and August? Any real winners or duds to report?

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7 comments:

  1. For some reason, I am too interested in the empties posts! I guess it is because of a weather differential...but you finish a LOT more body washes than I ever could. And I am envious that you always have so many of those deluxe Radical samples. I love them for traveling and can never have enough.

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    1. I love empties posts as well. This one was a bit scary since I was too busy at work in July to do one, but I thought I should get it done before September! The Radical deluxe sized serums are fantastic for traveling. I don't think that I have that many of them left though. I also have stopped traveling with full size products– so if they aren't small they stay at home.

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    2. Part of the reason that I seem to go through so many body washes is that I tend to use them in favor of bar soaps in the shower and I often use them to shave my legs. Also if I have them at eye level, then my husband helps himself so they tend to get used that much faster.

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    3. I'm with you on traveling with full sizes---I don't ever do that. I really prefer a self-contained deluxe size over decanting something myself, though. For trips of a few days, the little packets are great, too. But I tend to travel for two to three weeks at a time making those little Radical pumps perfect!

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    4. Exactly, if it isn't TSA compliant I basically leave it at home. I have been compiling the products that I plan to feature in the travel post that you asked for, and deluxe samples definitely play a part! I agree, that very short trips definitely invite the use of those pesky packets– provided that the whole packets can get used because I hate traveling with them if they are already open– the whole sandwich bag filled with exploded already open packets is not for me! Decanting can be an avoidable added step if you have plenty of deluxe samples, but if you are simply refilling TATCHA travel sizes, then it really is no bother. The Radical deluxe samples are definitely great travel-mates!

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  2. You use up so much more than I do. I finished my IT Cosmetics CC+ Cream and am working on finishing up a different one. Also finished a Pixi eyebrow pencil, a few sheet masks, Mary Kay eye makeup remover.

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    1. I have really been making a concerted effort to finish up all of the half-used products that I have sitting around because it starts to feel like clutter when there is too much of it. Things like body washes, shampoos and conditioners are pretty easy for me to use up, but I have also noticed that I have lots of half-used serums and lotions that I need to finish before they turn bad. I'm impressed that you have finished up that much makeup– I never seem to finish up makeup these days!

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