Purchased and Press Samples (Affiliate Links)
If there is one thing that I have learned about working from home, it is this: I use way more products than I do when I go to work. While I arguably work longer hours than I do when I physically go to work, I am home and that means that I can take little breaks here and there to pamper myself. Therefore, I have found that I have sought refuge in my jars, bottles and tubes of skincare products. I have been masking and peeling far more, and find that a lot of these rituals help reduce the stress associated with living in the time of the pandemic.
For the Face:
Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser ($42.00 for 1.7 oz. and $84.00 for 4.1 oz. from Tata Harper, Sephora, Nordstrom, Net-A-Porter, Cult Beauty, The Detox Market, Credo Beauty and goop): This is a truly fantastic cleanser that I have been using for quite a while now, and it remains one of my most reached-for wonder-products. I generally prefer lathering cleansers, but this one with its light creamy consistency, that is filled with gentle and refined exfoliating particles, is one of my all-time favorite cleansers. It gently exfoliates dead skin cells, unclogs congested pores and it hydrates, rather than strips and dries out the skin. Many moisturizing cleansers leave behind a greasy film, but this leaves behind no sort of unpleasant residue. Skin is left soft, smooth, supple and luminous. It has a very faint fruity aroma, presumably from the essential oils blend, but it is not in the least bit overpowering, and it does not linger. Purchase Again? Without question!
PurErb Bulgarian Rose Soothing Toner ($12.00 for 2 oz. and $32.00 for 6 oz. for $32.00 from PurErb): boasts the unique formula that blends, "uncommon ingredients such as Edelweiss stem cells, Cat’s Ear and Knotweed extracts, which provide excellent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging benefits." PurErb Bulgarian Rose Soothing Toner has the delectable aroma of Bulgarian Rose Essential Oil that immediately delights the senses while it calms the mind and moisturizes the skin. I immediately feel uplifted, and my skin is left soft, smooth, hydrated and luminous. I simply spray the toner on my face and neck after cleansing and use it to help absorb my beauty oils and serums more efficiently. It can also be used to set makeup, and should be spritzed whenever you want a little pick-me-up. Purchase Again? I love this toner, and as you can see I used up the full and travel sizes, but I need to use up a lot of facial sprays and toners before I purchase another one!Cane + Austin Miracle Pads ($44.00 for 60 peels from iHerb): These 20% Glycolic Acid pads exfoliate dead skin cells, even skin tone, and they are formulated to reduce the appearance of age spots, fine lines, wrinkles & sun damage. I only had 5 peels, which wasn't enough to see results beyond effective exfoliation, but I really liked them. Purchase Again? I have a lot of at-home peels to use before I will consider buying more, but I will definitely consider this brand.
Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength ($150.00 for a box of 60 treatments and $88.00 for 30 treatments from Sephora, Space NK, Nordstrom and Selfridges): This two part peel is a fantastic maintenance program between professional peels, but also is highly effective if you never seek out professional peels. I am very impressed by the efficacy of this product, but the Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength will not be suitable for sensitive skin. They also offer the Alpha Beta Original Formula which is a far more gentle variant. It is perfect for keeping my skin in great shape, and is an excellent product to use between professional peels and facials.Purchase Again? I still haven't finished my big box of 60, but I love this peel, and will definitely repurchase it in the future.
NuFACE PREP-N-GLOW Textured Cleansing Cloths ($10.00 for 5 cloths and $20.00 for 20 cloths from NuFace, Sephora, Dermstore, Ulta and SkinStore): I really, really enjoyed these dual-sided textured cleansing cloths! They have a textured side to facilitate exfoliation, and a smooth side. They exfoliate, clean and hydrate the skin, and they are quite effective. Purchase Again? Maybe, but I have lots of exfoliating pads to use before I purchase any others.
RODIAL Dragon's Blood Eye Masks ($39.00-$49.00 from Rodial, Dermstore, Amazon and Bloomingdale's): These are super hydrating treatment masks saturated with Rodial's iconic Dragon's Blood Complex. 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! It softens the appearance of fine lines an my skin is left lusciously hydrated and luminous. Furthermore, my fine lines were plumped, my skin appeared lifted and toned, and when I had under-eye puffiness it was radically diminished. Rodial Dragon's Blood Eye Masks are also very refreshing and cooling, and feel so good against the skin. Purchase Again? Once I finish up my current eye masks, I will definitely consider repurchasing these!
Vitabrid Dual Mask ($35.00 for 5 masks. Currently on sale for $17.50 from Vitabrid): Vitabrid is very generous with the amount of serum that they use to saturate their masks, and one must not forget to use all of the serum that pools at the bottom of the package. In fact, there is enough excess serum that one can slather it just about everywhere on their face, neck, décolleté, arms and hands. The anti-aging mask is formulated to effectively deliver active Vitamin C and peptides to the skin that brightens, softens and smoothes it. It plumps the appearance of fine lines, brightens the appearance of discoloration and leaves the skin deeply moisturized. After about 20 minutes skin has a pronounced clarity and a dewy luminosity. The effects are immediate and obvious. Purchase Again? I have a full box that I will start using soon!
MegRhythm Gentle Steam Eye Mask ($10.99-$17.77 for 7 masks from Yes Style Global and Amazon): If you are looking for serious stress relief, MegRhythm Steam Eye Masks, which stay at a comfortable temperature for 10 minutes, bathe "eyes and the delicate eye area in warm steam." This steam bath for the eyes helps release the tensions of the day. This is the perfect before bedtime treat! Purchase Again? I will definitely repurchase more since these were my last four!
For the Body:
African Botanics Marula Plantes d'Afrique Shower Cream ($60.00 for 6.7 oz. from African Botanics, Net-A-Porter and Cult Beauty £36.00): The first thing that one is struck by is the divine aroma that might be described as a gorgeous commingling of the Green Rooibos Tea and Honeybush Leaf Extracts, the Cape Rose Geranium and the Lemongrass. The scent is warm and comforting and it immediately soothes the spirit and calms the mind.
The non-foaming cream cleanser is a sublime velvety cream that feels indescribably silky and luxurious against the skin. The moment that the rich cream comes in contact with water, it transforms into an ultra emollient emulsion. It is infused with small, and gentle, exfoliating particles, that are comprised of crushed Baobab fruit and ancient volcanic lava minerals, that efficiently and effectively remove dead skin cells without ever damaging or irritating the skin.
The formula is exceptionally moisturizing, and leaves skin silky soft, supple, hydrated, soothed, calmed, luminous, and thoroughly cleansed and exfoliated. There is also a discernible lifting and toning sensation that one notes after use, and skin looks and feels absolutely renewed and refreshed. Purchase Again? YES!
SENTEURS D'ORIENT Hammam Soap in Oriental Gardenia ($36.00 for 7.2 oz. from Senteurs D'Orient and Net-A-Porter): This is the most beautiful soap imaginable. From the gorgeous design of the soap itself to the otherworldly aroma of the gardenia used to make this ultra-luxe bar– this is the most delectable soap in which to luxuriate. The rich and creamy lather gently cleanses the skin without stripping it, while the beautiful aroma delights the senses. I love that this soap is on a rope– since hanging it allows it to dry out between uses. It smells like the embodiment of gardenia in a warm summer breeze, and I have used it nearly every single day since opening it. If you love the smell of gardenia, you will become as obsessed with this soap as I have! Purchase Again? I already opened a new one!
Spongellé Ginger Bergamot Body Wash Infused Buffer ($9.00 from Spongellé): is dual-sided body wash-infused sponge with the delightful scent that is best described as a warm citrus. It offers enough friction to exfoliate dead skin cells effectively without being too abrasive. Purchase Again? I have several others, but I will definitely purchase more once I finish up what I have!
Salt by Hendrix Luxe Oil + Salt Scrub Sweet Orange + Ylang Ylang (This version no longer appears on their website, but there are many others from which to choose from Salt by Hendrix): This is an incredibly luxurious oil and salt body scrub that leaves skin soft, smooth, supple and incredibly hydrated. The aroma, which is informed by the the Sweet Orange and Ylang Ylang, is delectable, soothing and beautiful. Purchase Again? I have two more of their body scrubs left, and I will try more once I finish my last jar!
LAVANILA Vanilla Bean Creamy Body Oil ($39.00 for 3.4 oz. from Sephora): This lightweight, super-hydrating creamy oil smells divine, and it delivers instant hydration without leaving behind a greasy residue. It leaves skin soft, smooth and supple and lightly fragranced. The consistency is thin, it melts into the skin immediately, and leaves behind an ethereal glow. The warm veil of vanilla bean aroma is comforting and rich, and it lingers for quite a while. Purchase Again? I already opened another bottle!
For the Hair:
Eleni & Chris Keratin Strengthening Leave-In Treatment Cream for Dry and Damaged Hair ($29.00 for 5.1 oz. from Eleni & Chris): I always use a leave-in conditioner after I wash and condition my hair. This is a non-negotiable step for me because it is difficult to get a comb or brush though my curly tresses when I do skin leave-ins. I use a small amount and work it from roots to ends, and it not only provides vital moisture, but it reduces frizz, adds shine, and allows me to comb and brush without any tugging. It has a delectable warm and creamy aroma that is a treat to the senses, however, it does fade quickly. Purchase Again? YES!
Eleni & Chris Chromin Colorpro Shampoo for Normal to Dry Hair ($26.00 for 10.1 oz. from Eleni & Chris): That I have dry and curly hair is no secret, but add to that the fact that I color treat it– which means that I have to be especially careful about the shampoos that I use. It thoroughly cleanses the hair without ever stripping it, it helps reduce fading color-treatments and it leaves hair soft and moisturized. Furthermore, it works wonders combating frizz and fly-aways, and it has a delectable semi-floral aroma. Purchase Again? I definitely would once I have finished up a few more of my bottles of shampoo.
Unwash Bio-Cleansing Conditioner ($10.00 for 2.5 oz. and $29.00 for 13.5 oz. from Amazon): I love the concept of non-lathering cleansing conditioner because naturally dry and curly hair can really take a beating from so many of the lathering shampoos on the market. This doesn't leave a residue and rinses clean. I really liked it a lot. Purchase Again? Maybe one day, but not in the near future.
Unwash Hydrating Masque ($10.00 for 2.5 oz. and $29.00 for 13.5 oz. from Amazon): This is a very hydrating hair masque that deeply hydrates dry hair and gives it more volume, manageability and it leaves it shinier. Purchase Again? At some point when I run low on conditioner.
Miriam Quevedo Glacial White Caviar Hydra Pure Rescue Masque ($70.00 for 8.5 oz. from Nordstrom, Space NK, Bloomingdale's, Olivela and Revolve): This is such a luxurious hair care brand, and this masque is lightweight, very moisturizing and filled with antioxidants. It left my hair deeply conditioned and very manageable. Purchase Again? Maybe, but again it will be quite a while before I need to buy shampoos, conditioners or hair masques.
Miriam Quevedo Extreme Caviar Intensive Anti-Aging Luxe Masque ($50.00 for 8.46 oz. from Nordstrom, Space NK, Dermstore, Olivela and Revolve): This is described as an "ultra-hydrating hair care formula helps restore the natural oils in your hair, leaving it smoother and healthier. The conditioning mask also repairs dry, damaged strands for shinier, more voluminous and naturally beautiful hair." I found that it was very moisturizing and that it made my hair smooth and manageable. It feels very luxurious, and it is very high quality. Purchase Again? Probably at some point, but I think that I may have another sample to use!
Rahua Omega 9 Hair Mask ($58.00 for 7 oz. from Rahua, Space NK, Sephora, Bloomingdale's, Dermstore, goop and Cult Beauty): This is a nourishing and moisturizing mask that deeply conditions hair and scalp. It is mid-weight and very emollient- yet it neither weighs hair down, nor does it leave behind a greasy film. Instead, it rinses clean while perfectly conditioning the hair and scalp. Simply comb it through wet, freshly shampooed, hair– working it though from roots to ends, and lightly massaging the scalp. You can leave it on your hair for 10-15 minutes, as suggested, but I periodically wait about 30 minutes before rinsing my hair. It leaves hair remarkably soft, smooth, hydrated, frizz-free and with a gorgeous glossy shine. It has a lovely lavender aroma that is calming and soothing, but it is neither in the least bit pungent, nor overpowering. Purchase Again? I already have a full size bottle!
Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo ($22.00 for 8.5 oz. from Ouidad): This effective shampoo thoroughly cleanses the hair without stripping it in the least bit. The sulfate-free formula is gentle, and does not rob hair of vital moisture. Additionally, it nourishes the hair, fights frizz and leaves hair silky smooth. This is a wonderful shampoo if you have wavy or curly hair that is prone to frizz and fly-aways! Purchase Again? Just as soon as I finish a few more shampoos. This is such an amazing shampoo for my curly hair!
Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Conditioner ($24.00 for 8.5 oz. from Ouidad): This is an ultra-emollient and moisturizing conditioner that hydrates dry hair, combats frizz and fly-aways, detangles and leaves curls soft, smooth and shiny! It has a wonderful light fragrance, but it does fade quickly. Purchase Again? Just as soon as I finish a few more conditioners.
For the Hands:South of France Foaming Hand Soaps ($7.71 for 8 oz. from South of France Natural Body Care and Amazon): are made with organic Agave Nectar because of its ability to hydrate and nourish the skin. In fact, their, "richly foaming Hand Wash" is enriched with a proprietary blend of natural vegetable glycerin and Coconut Oil that gently clean the skin while leaving it soft and moisturized. Purchase Again? I definitely will.
Dove White Beauty Bar ($2.99-$12.99 for 2-14 bar packs from Target and Walgreens): This gentle, creamy cleansing bar contains ¼ moisturizing cream that leaves skin soft smooth and very clean. We use a lot of these bars and really love them! Purchase Again? I just opened another one!
Kneipp Bath Bar Soft Skin Almond Blossom (Was $5.00 from Kneipp. Appears to have been discontinued): This wonderfully aromatic bath bar is ultra gentle, non-stripping and it never dries out the skin. The nourishing plant-based formula and almond oil is emollient enough that I have shaved my underarms and legs with great results! Purchase Again? I would if they still had this wonderful bar! I just opened their lavender bar, and love it!
Farmhouse Fresh Honey Lavender Whole Milk Soap ($12.50 for 4.5 oz. from Farmhouse Fresh): Farmhouse Fresh Honey Lavender Whole Milk Soap features Texas honey, whole milk from the Midwest, and Washington Lavender. This rich and creamy soap is ultra-emollient, nourishing and unbelievably hydrating. Enriched with whole milk, buttery fats, vitamins A and B12, coconut, rice bran and olive oil, it forms a creamy lush lather that thoroughly cleans without ever stripping the skin. The aroma, which is a wonderfully soothing blend of honey and lavender, is a calming treat to the senses. Purchase Again? Definitely! I have a few of their other Whole Milk Soaps, but love them enough to repurchase!
Purell Advanced Hand Sanitizer ($3.79 for 8 oz. from Target): This is my favorite mainstream hand sanitizer, and one of its great strengths is that it doesn't become sticky when it dries. Purchase Again? Definitely!
Riley's Hand Sanitizer (from Riley's and at assorted grocery stores): This is a case of a brewery rising to the occasion and using their facilities to help out during the Covid pandemic, and I am so happy to see this happening! I am not sure how much this cost, but my husband picked it up and the grocery store. I simply pour it into one of my small spray bottles and it works perfectly. It is non-sticky and doesn't have a strong smell. Purchase Again? Definitely, and in fact we already have.
MasqueBAR Hand Treat Moisture & Nourishing Hand Mask ($9.99 for 2 pair of gloves from Masque Bar): If ever there was a time for hand masking, it is now. My poor hands get washed so much these days, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, that I have to moisturize them a lot. Therefore, adding a hand mask to my routine is a nice way to deliver serious moisture to my hands whenever they need that pick-me-up. These effective masks banish dry skin and leave hands and cuticles, soft, supply and very hydrated skin. Purchase Again? Without question. These helped my poor over-washed hands so much!
For the Feet:Dr. Suzanne Levine's Foot Facial Glycolic 10% Foot Pads ($40.00 from Dr. Suzanne Levine and Amazon): Dr. Suzanne Levine, who is a New York City podiatrist, created a wonderful line of products to pamper your feet. Dr. Levine's wonderful Foot and Hand Cream and highly effective Glycolic 10% Pads work in tandem to exfoliate dead skin cells and then offer rich moisture– the end result is baby's bottom soft feet that are smooth and moisturized. Purchase Again? These are great, and I will definitely consider purchasing them once I finish up a few more of my foot care products.
VILACT 24/7 Foot Cream with Lactoactive ($29.99 for 3.38 FL.OZ from VILACT): I absolutely love this foot cream! It is a lightweight, non-greasy and fast absorbing cream, and it has a lovely light fragrance. I use it nightly before I go to bed, and I can't believe how soft, smooth, supple and moisturized it leaves my feet. Purchase Again? I still have other foot creams to use first, but this stuff is great!
From My Travel Bag:Fresh Soy Face Cleanser ($15.00 for 1.7 oz. and $38.00 for 5 oz. from Sephora, Nordstrom, Bluemercury and Cult Beauty): Described as a "three-in-one face wash that gently melts away makeup and mascara (without the sting!), removes impurities, and tones for clean, balanced skin. I likes it and found that it thoroughly cleaned my skin without stripping it. Purchase Again? Probably not because I have lots and lots of cleansers to use before I will need to purchase another.
Miriam Quevedo Sublime Gold Shampoo ($45.00 for 8.5 oz. from Space NK, Dermstore, Nordstrom, Bloomingdale's and Olivela): Miriam Quevedo describes this shampoo as, "Enriched with caviar, imperial orchid and bio-argan oil, this formula nourishes and regenerates the heart of the hair shaft and scalp, enhancing the vitality of your hair. Shine-enhancing agents bring added silkiness while micronized golden powders add sublime, golden highlights. It's super-conditioning but gentle on the scalp." This shampoo is ultra-luxe and such a joy to use. It is rich, hydrating and really decadent. Purchase Again? Maybe at some point, but I have a lot of shampoos to use before I need to purchase another one!
Rahua Founder's Blend Hair & Scalp Treatment ($40.00 value for 1.3 oz. from Rahua, The Detox Market, Petit Vour and Nordstrom): Wow, just wow!! This is a miraculous product that has done more for my naturally dry and curly hair than any other haircare product in recent memory, seriously! The Founder's Blend can either be used as a deep treatment mask or as a leave-in treatment to deeply nourish and hydrate hair, but it is also ultra-effective in its ability to tame frizz and flyaways, and leave hair soft, supple, shiny and manageable. These attributes are so hard to come by for dry, curly, color-processed hair. The warm and nutty aroma is utterly delectable. Purchase Again? Oh, yes!
African Botanics Pure Marula Oil ($100.00 for 1 oz. from African Botanics, Dermstore, Credo Beauty, Revolve, Cult Beauty and Bluemercury): This is a velvety smooth, fast absorbing lightweight oil that melts into the skin quickly and effortlessly, and it leaves behind no greasy residue. It has a light, warm, sweet scent that is utterly intoxicating. This antioxidant rich formula is not only a highly effective anti-aging serum, but also a great vitamin and amino acid rich formula that promotes healing and calming of the skin. It is a luxurious moisturizer that immediately plumps, hydrates and balances the skin. Skin is rendered velvety soft, supple, smooth, lifted and hydrated. Furthermore, skin is left with the highly sought after radiance that beauty oil enthusiasts seek out with such vigor! Purchase Again? I have a full bottle!
TATCHA Indigo Soothing Triple Recovery Cream ($85.00 for 1.7 oz. and $20.00 for 0.34 oz. from TATCHA, Sephora and QVC): If you have ultra sensitive skin, Eczema, or Rosacea, and you seek a highly effective anti-aging cream that will soothe, rather than further irritate your skin, then TATCHA has created the perfect cream to calm, heal and lift your skin. TATCHA Indigo Soothing Triple Recovery Cream is a miraculous healing cream made with Japanese Indigo and 3% Colloidal Oatmeal– both of which are highly effective ingredients that soothe, calm and comfort irritated and volatile skin. Furthermore, the ingredients chosen are highly effective for nourishing and moisturizing while simultaneously lifting and firming the skin. I love to use it whenever my skin is irritated, or after I exfoliate of have a peel. Purchase Again? I have a full jar open! This is amazing cream!
Fragrances:L'Occitane Peony Eau de Toilette ($59.00 for 2.5 oz. from L'OCCITANE): This is a light and airy fresh floral that sits close to the skin, and is neither overwhelming nor in the least bit cloying. Instead, the sweetness is tempered by a fresh green aroma that smells delectable. Purchase Again? Probably not. While I like it a lot, I have way too many perfumes right now.
Diptyque Eau de Parfum (from Diptyque, Nordstrom, Space NK, Bloomingdale's and Net-A-Porter): I love their fragrances, but I can't remember which scents these were! They lived in my travel bag, and I used them when I was out of town. When I took this picture I didn't notice that I didn't capture the name of each fragrance until I had already tossed the empty vials. Purchase Again? I like many of their fragrances, and once I am in the market for new perfumes I will take a look at a few of their scents.
Aftelier Perfumes (from Aftelier Perfumes): Mandy Aftel makes the most incredible natural perfumes, and they are definitely worth trying. Among my favorites are Cuir de Gardenia, Palimpsest, Wild Roses, Fig and Honey Blossom. Purchase Again? YES!
Essential Oils:Gurunanda Lavender Essential Oil $5.94-$7.99 each and Sets for $29.99+ from Gurunanda and Amazon): Gurunanda has a wide assortment of essentials oils and essential oil blends, and I use them all of the time. They pair beautifully will their oil diffusers, and their oil blends address a variety of concerns from sleeplessness to congestion, and there are even formulation for relaxation, tranquility and harmony. Their Lavender Essential Oil is one of my favorites, and this is the second bottle that I have gone through in the last couple of months, but only because I had two open largely empty bottles in rotation! Purchase Again? I already opened a fresh bottle!
Artnaturals Lemongrass Essential Oil ($8.98 from Amazon): This is such an uplifting and lovely essential oil, and I love to use it in one of my many diffusers. If you love lemongrass, then this is a must-have! Purchase Again? I just opened another bottle!
Gurunanda Calming Rose Kiss Essential Oil ($12.00 from Amazon): This calming roll-on scent is perfect if you love the scent of roses. I wore it on my wrists and it made me very happy! Purchase Again? Yes, I will most definitely purchase another bottle!
Artnaturals Frankincense Essential Oil ($6.98 and $19.95 from Amazon): Frankincense is among the essential oils that I use a lot since it is safe for felines, therefore I diffuse it very often. Purchase Again? I already opened a new bottle!
What did you use up, toss out, give away or return in August? Any really winners or duds to report? Do tell!
Purchased and Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own (Affiliate Links).
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