You guys have no idea how long I’ve been wanting to make this post. I piled my beauty empties up into a box for months (note for future reference: choose a box with a lid because everything *will* get dusty). I organized these by type, and included whether I repurchased them or tried something different/replaced it with something else.
(Another note for future reference: write these individually as soon as you use them up – doing this in one sitting with affiliate links and all takes AGES.)
I raved about this (more than) once and I’ll rave about it again – I don’t think words can express just how darn much I love this cleanser! It doesn’t foam up, but it cleanses without stripping my skin as much as other cleansers do. It’s great as a gentle everyday cleanser and will take off light makeup when I’m being lazy, though I usually take off my everyday, no-makeup makeup with micellar water first. I’ve already repurchased this – in fact, I’m on my third bottle!
Bioderma – $6.90 for mini, $14.90 for full size
Most of you guys probably already know how I feel about Bioderma since I’m not new to it, and gave it a second chance not too long ago. My feelings are the same: it’s good, but the one that Garnier makes is better simply for the price.
I’ve been using this for a few years, and recently replaced it with the waterproof version. Still at the same great price, just takes off more stubborn eye makeup with less effort. It’s a close dupe to Bioderma – though I wouldn’t call it an exact dupe, because Bioderma does a slightly better job at removing mascara. Still, for about half the price, I’d rather go for Garnier instead.
Nudu Reviving Toner (c/o Nudu) – $32 for mini, $96 for full size
Let’s just start off by saying that a 1.7oz bottle retails for $32, while a 5oz bottle retails for… $96. I won’t lie, I loved this toner. It was super hydrating and it really did make a difference in my skin, but it’s not worth the price point. I bought the Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Toner during the last Sephora VIB sale; it does about the same thing, and I think it’s better for the price.
Fresh Rose Face Mask – $30 for mini, $62 for full size
I’m not sure this actually… does anything for my skin? It’s nice and I feel slightly more hydrated, but there are products that cost less and do more for me. Either way, it feels ultra luxurious and it’s definitely one of those feel-good masks. While I’m still pining over this, I ended up getting the Kiehls Calendula and Aloe Mask. It’s less expensive and has a similar texture, but does more for me on the hydration side of things.
For a dry girl like me, hyaluronic acid is a staple in my routine. The price can’t be beat at a little less than $7, and it actually makes a difference in my skin. I think I’ve gone through 4-5 bottles of this. I already have another one on backup!
The Ordinary “Buffet” – $14.80
Funnily enough, I don’t think Buffet did as much for me as their hyaluronic acid did. Buffet is supposed to have a bunch of anti-aging benefits rolled into one – hence the name, “Buffet.” Still, I think it’s more of a preventative method rather than a “I have to feel like my face is plump and glowy .2 seconds after rubbing this in” kind of thing. Right now I’m trying out the Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Serum that I won from Jenny’s recent giveaway and it’s HUGE, so I probably won’t be repurchasing anytime soon.
Here’s a fun fact: rosehip seed oil is supposed to smell nutty and not at all like rosehips! Who knew, eh? It reduced my redness a bit, which is nice. I more or less get the same result from most oils though, so I switched to their Argan Oil out of curiosity since it’s less expensive (it smells like manure and I bought two of these, so…), but I also want to try the Woolzies rosehip seed oil since one of my friends recommended it to me.
The reviews on Beautylish say it’s like Botox in a tube, so of course I scrambled to get it. However, I’m… in my mid-twenties, and well, I don’t have wrinkles yet so it obviously didn’t do anything for me. I wouldn’t repurchase it right now, but maybe when I’m older and *actually* have fine lines.
I do a lot of lip art on Instagram, and my favorite lip gloss to use by far is Glossier’s. It’s not sticky, suspends pigments and glitters really well, and it’s not too thick or too runny. I have a few more lip glosses to go through first, but I’m going back to this as soon as I’m almost done all of them.
Another one of those Glossier products that I thought was overhyped. I think it says a lot that I’ve already gone through three (!!!) of these. They’re great for everyday no-makeup makeup when my brows need a little something to perk them up. When it comes to the full Instagram brow, it sets my brow hairs nicely and it actually stays in place. It also gives my brows that little bit of definition to make them look more dimensional. I bought extras during their Black Friday sale, and I hope it’s enough to last me until the next one.
Duo Eyelash Adhesive – $9
This smells like rotten fish. Everyone says this smells like rotten fish. But, I think it’s the most user-friendly lash glue out there, so I repurchased it. Most lash glues come in a tube and a lot of the product gets clumpy around the opening. This one is the easiest to use in my opinion, especially since I can squeeze some out whenever I’m gluing flowers and rhinestones onto my face.
Body & Hair
I’ve been using Hand Food as long as I can remember, and it’s one of my favorite hand creams. It absorbs quickly, doesn’t feel too greasy, and the scent is subtly fruity and fresh. I like trying new ones from time to time (I’m using the Tatcha Indigo Soothing Silk hand cream right now!), but I always find myself going back to Hand Food at one point or another.
Soap & Glory Heel Genius – $10
Talking about a foot cream/feet in general is probably the least glamorous thing. My feet are pretty dry and scaly (ew, but also it’s reality), so regular lotions will kind of moisturize them, but the white, dry skin is still there. Heel Genius takes care of everything – I think it’s all the fruit acids in it, because my feet become baby soft without that weird layer of white/dead skin within a few days.
I’m still going through the other shampoos in my rotation, though I do like the Living Proof one a lot. It cleanses my hair thoroughly while still keeping it soft and shiny. I’m mentioned debating on trying the VERB Ghost Shampoo, but I think I might just skip it altogether and go back to this one.
Shiseido Facial Cotton – $10
I bought these out of curiosity since all the reviews were raving about these. And they’re right – these Shiseido cottons are soft and feel super luxe, and they don’t fall apart. They are expensive though, and I’ve found a much better alternative in the Skinfood White Emboss Cottons (which is conveniently below!).
Skinfood White Emboss Cotton – $4.50
Here’s the much better alternative to the Shiseido Facial Cottons! It’s by no means a complete dupe, but it’s similar in that they don’t fall apart or leave little fuzzies behind. They also have a nice thick and weighty feel to it – at least, as weighty as a cotton pad can get. The best part is that they’re quite inexpensive, even compared to the crappy ones from the drugstore. They’re less than $2 at RoseRoseShop, but be aware that the shipping costs make up for it since it’s coming in from overseas if you’re based in the US or Canada.
What are some of your recent beauty empties?