Empties February 2015

There is something so incredibly satisfying about completely using up a product. Of course, sometimes it’s a little sad, but mostly, I get a deep sense of accomplishment when I finish a face cream or hit pan on a powder. I’m not going to ponder too deeply what that says about me.

empties_2_15_15

Empties posts are the only time I tend to talk about skin care (I’m a total skin care junky, I just find it difficult to give a comprehensive review of most products) so this post is about to get lengthy. Yay!

Shiseido Facial Cotton

shiseido_facial_cotton shiseido_facial_cotton_back_label

Not so exciting, but something I use most days. A package of Shiseido Facial Cotton is around $9-$10 so it’s pricey for what you’re actually purchasing. I don’t tend to go through a package very quickly though so I don’t mind the price tag. I use two of these cotton squares each day to remove my mascara. Occasionally I’ll use them to apply an essence or toner but typically I just use them for makeup removal.

Pros: SOFT SOFT SOFT. Seriously. So soft. These don’t fall apart like some facial cotton I’ve used in the past and frankly, that’s what I love the most about these.

Cons: Technically they’re over priced, but also, $10.00 isn’t a huge sum of money over all so I suppose the price justification will depend on how much you do or do not like these.

Number of times I’ve purchased: 2

Will I repurchase: I already have!

Price and Availability: Around $10.00 and I purchase this from Sephora

SK-II Facial Treatment Essence

sk_ii_facial_treatment_essence sk_ii_facial_treatment_essence_back_label

SK-II Essence makes some pretty hefty claims about preserving youthful skin. The ingredient in this product that is marketed as being a miracle worker is pitera (found in sake). This smells faintly like sake but I don’t find the scent unpleasant. Did I notice magical things in my skin? No, not really. I do notice when I use this that my skin looks and feels better in a rather undefinable way, I just can’t quite put my finger on exactly what is better, it’s just…better. I wish I could be more specific but I really can’t! The consistency of the product is similar to water.

Ingredients:

Saccharomycopsis Ferment Filtrate**, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, Aqua (Water/ Eau), Sodium Benzoate, Methylparaben, Sorbic Acid.

There isn’t really anything incredible in the ingredients list is there? And there are other yeast based essences available (Missha has one although I haven’t tried it). According to CosDNA this isn’t too bad in the irritants category. Butylene Glycol is the only ingredient that registers as an acne irritant and it only registers at a 1.

Pros: Adds an extra layer of light moisture. Absorbs quickly into the skin. Gives a marginal improvement in skin texture and moisture retention.

Cons: Holy crap is this shit expensive. For the price, I’d like to be able to really pin point thatt the product in question is doing very specific and noticeable things for my skin and I just can’t.

Number of times I’ve purchased: 1

Will I repurchase: Sadly no. While I really enjoyed this, I absolutely cannot justify the price tag.

Pricing and Availability: $105.00 for 2oz (this is available in varying quantities). I purchased mine from Neiman Marcus but it’s also now available from Sephora as well as directly from SK-II.

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair

estee_lauder_advanced_night_repair_serum

I truly enjoyed using this product. It has a faint herbal scent that I actually quite liked. This is a runny consistency that is a tad milky. I did notice that my skin was a smidgeon softer when I use this. I’m currently working through a small sample size but we’ll see if I notice a difference in my skin once I discontinue usage.

Ingredients:

Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Methyl Gluceth-20, PEG-75, Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Butylene Glycol, Propanediol, Cola Acuminata (Kola) Seed Extract, Hydrolyzed Algin, Pantethine, Caffeine, Lectithin, Tripeptide-32, Ethylhexylglycerin,Sodium RNA, Bisabolol, Glycereth-26, Squalane, Sodium Hyaluronate, Oleth-3 Phosphate, Caprylyl Glycol, Lactobacillus Ferment, Oleth-3, Oleth-5, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Yeast Extract, Choleth-24, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Ceteth-24, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Mexylene Glycol, Carbonmer, Triethanolamine, Trisodium EDTA, BHT, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Red 4, Yellow 5.

Estee Lauder doesn’t provide an ingredients list on their website so I pulled this list from Paula’s Choice.

On CosDNA this has a few ingredients that actually rate quite high on the irritant list which is unfortunate.

Pros: Pleasant to use. Added a noticeable (if slight) softness to my skin.

Cons: It would seem that there are some relatively irritating ingredients in this product. It’s quite pricey.

Number of times I’ve purchased: 1

Will I repurchase: No

Pricing and Availability: I purchased this at an Estee Lauder counter but it is also available from Sephora (I believe). $62.00 for 1oz.

Estee Lauder Advanced Time Zone Eye Cream

estee_lauder_advanced_time_zone_eye_cream

This came as part of a gift with purchase when I bought the Night Repair serum. I quite liked this for a daytime eye cream. It was decently moisturizing, and almost seemed to give a brightening effect over time.

Ingredients:

Water\Aqua\Eau, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Polyethylene, Cetyl Esters, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Cetearyl Alcohol, Isostearyl Neopentanoate, Sucrose, Propanediol, Butylene Glycol, Tamarindus Indica Seed Extract, Polygonum Cuspidatum Root Extract, Hydrolyzed Rice Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, Selaginella Tamariscina (Spike Moss) Extract, Humulus Lupulus (Hops) Extract, Citrus Reticulata (Tangerine) Peel Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Fruit Juice, Limonium Vulgare Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Yeast Extract\Faex\Extrait De Levure, Tocopheryl Acetate, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Lens Esculenta (Lentil) Fruit Extract, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Phytantriol, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Trehalose, Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Acetyl Glucosamine, Cetearyl Glucoside, Citrullus Vulgaris (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Cetyl Alcohol, Centarium Erythraea (Centaury) Extract, Glycerin, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium PCA, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Caffeine, Aminomethyl Propanol, Sigesbeckia Orientalis (St. Paul’s Wort) Extract, Polybutene, Sodium Hyaluronate, Dimethicone, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Lauryl PCA, Hexylene Glycol, Whey Protein, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Cholesterol, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Lactate, PEG-100 Stearate, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Phospholipids, Salicornia Herbacea Extract, Cucumis Melo (Melon) Fruit Extract, Linoleic Acid, Phytosteryl Canola Glycerides, Decarboxy Carnosine HCL, Oleic Acid, Palmitic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Carbomer, Stearic Acid, Nordihydroguaiaretic Acid, Phytosphingosine, Tiolein, Cyclodextrin, Potassium Sulfate, Linolenic Acid, Ethylbisiminomethylguaiacol Magnesium Chloride, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, Mica, Titanium Dioxide

Holy guacamole, that’s a serious ingredients list! There are definitely some nice ingredients in this eye cream and for the most part, none of them are high on the irritants scale with the exception of BHT which is a preservative.

Pros: Nicely moisturizing, not overly greasy.

Cons: There is some added fragrance (which isn’t noticeable). Jar packaging. Again, a bit pricey and for something at this price point, I’d like to see more noticeable results.

Number of times I’ve purchased: Just the one gift with purchase sample size.

Will I repurchase: No

Pricing and Availability: Available anywhere that Estee Lauder is sold. $58.00 for .5oz

L’Oreal Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition Gold Balm

loreal_age_perfect_hydra_nutrition_golden_balm

I actually feel like this moisturizer does a nice job of making my skin feel more comfortably hydrated. It is however, VERY rich and even though I have dry skin, this was a bit too rich for me and I can only use it every other night or I start experiencing clogged pores. It has a very thick texture, almost like a balm (no way!) rather than a cream.

Ingredients:

AQUA / WATER • GLYCERIN • PARAFFINUM LIQUIDUM / MINERAL OIL • ISOCETYL STEARATE • HYDROGENATED POLYISOBUTENE • DIMETHICONE • BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII BUTTER / SHEA BUTTER • CERA ALBA / BEESWAX • CETYL ALCOHOL • GLYCERYL STEARATE • PEG-100 STEARATE • CAMELINA SATIVA OIL / CAMELINA SATIVA SEED OIL • HYDROXYETHYLPIPERAZINE ETHANE SULFONIC ACID • ROSA CANINA FRUIT OIL • ORIGANUM MAJORANA LEAF OIL • ANTHEMIS NOBILIS FLOWER OIL • PRUNUS ARMENIACA KERNEL OIL / APRICOT KERNEL OIL • CITRUS AURANTIUM AMARA FLOWER OIL / BITTER ORANGE FLOWER OIL • CITRUS AURANTIUM DULCIS PEEL OIL / ORANGE PEEL OIL • ZEA MAYS OIL / CORN OIL • CERA MICROCRISTALLINA / MICROCRYSTALLINE WAX • PARAFFIN • ROYAL JELLY EXTRACT • SORBITAN TRISTEARATE • CALCIUM PANTETHEINE SULFONATE • COPERNICIA CERIFERA CERA / CARNAUBA WAX • ISOHEXADECANE • ASCORBYL GLUCOSIDE • DISODIUM EDTA • PROPYLENE GLYCOL • HYDROXYAPATITE • CAPRYLYL GLYCOL • PASSIFLORA EDULIS OIL / PASSIFLORA EDULIS SEED OIL • XANTHAN GUM • POLYSORBATE 80 • ACRYLAMIDE/SODIUM ACRYLOYLDIMETHYLTAURATE COPOLYMER • ACRYLATES COPOLYMER • ORYZA SATIVA BRAN OIL / RICE BRAN OIL • PENTAERYTHRITYL TETRA-DI-T-BUTYL HYDROXYHYDROCINNAMATE • CI 15985 / YELLOW 6 • CI 47005 / YELLOW 10 • GERANIOL • EUGENOL • COUMARIN • LIMONENE • CITRAL • CITRONELLOL • PARFUM / FRAGRANCE
Again, quite a long ingredients list! Some of these ingredients are really nice…some…not so much. There are several that rate quite high on the irritants list and it also has a high amount of fragrance (including limonene, and orange peel oil)
Pros: Very moisturizing, smells nice, easily accessible.
Cons: Smells nice… O_o has some pretty hefty acne triggers.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 2
Will I repurchase: Probably not.
Pricing and Availability: $20.00 for 1.7oz. Available at most drugstores.
Kiehl’s Creme D’Elegance
kiehls_creme_de_elegance
I purchased this last winter when I thought my face was actually going to flake off entirely. Gross right? Totally. Unfortunately, this puppy seriously broke me out so I used this as a hand cream at night before bed.
Ingredients:
Again, Kiehl’s doesn’t actually provide a complete list of ingredients on their website (if your eyesight is awesome you can get most of them from the picture above), but just lists cocoa butter and sesame oil.
Water, Squalane, Propylene Glycol, PEG-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, Cetyl Acetate, Myristyl Alcohol, Ozekerite, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Isopropyl Lanolate, Stearyl Alcohol, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Dimethicone, Isopropyl Palmitate, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Petrolatum, Lanolin Liquida (Lanolin) Oil, Lithium Magnesium Sodium Silicate, Lanolin, Allantoin, Methylparaben, Acetylated Lanolin Alcohol, PPG-5-Ceteth-20, Cholesterol, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flower, Propylparaben, Lanolin Alcohol, Tocopherol, Olea Europaea (Olive Fruit) Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Prunus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Retinyl Palmitate, Panthenol, Silk Amino Acids, Calendula Officinalis Flower Oil, Lecithin, Butylparaben, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, TBHQ, Zea Mays (Corn) Oil, Beta-Carotene
This has some fragrance and some of the heavier butters (cocoa butter, lanolin alcohol) are definitely triggers for acne.
Pros: Very emollient.
Cons: Has some irritants in the ingredients. Jar packaging.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 1
Will I repurchase: No
Pricing and Availability: $29.00 for 2oz. Available at Kiehl’s counters or from the Kiehl’s website.
L’Occitane Lavande Hand Cream
l_occitane_lavande l_occitane_lavande_ingredients
This was a lovely gift in my stocking this year and was my first time using anything from L’Occitane.
Ingredients: Weirdly unavailable on the web. If you’re really curious, you can zoom in on the picture above. The L’Occitane website only lists Lavender and Shea Butter. What’s up with that?
Pros: Thicker consistency that feels quite nourishing initially. Sinks in relatively quickly so it’s easy to use even during the day.
Cons: This won’t be a con for everyone, but this smells strongly of lavender (obviously) to the point that it will scent your whole office. Personally, lavender is a bit irritating on my skin and if I use it regularly, it starts to make my skin a tad itchy.
Number of times I’ve purchased: Just the one gift!
Will I repurchase: No (but I do have a set of three other L’Occitane hand creams in different scents)
Pricing and Availability:  $12.00 for 1oz. Available from L’Occitane and Sephora
Covergirl Clump Crushers Mascara
covergirl_clump_crusher_mascara
This is a nice separating mascara. It doesn’t add length or volume but I liked it as a “primer” so to speak and I used it under more clumpy mascara.
Pros: Not a clump in sight! Worked well when paired with other mascara.
Cons: I didn’t love this on it’s own because it didn’t really volumize or lengthen.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 1
Will I repurchase: Maybe
Pricing and Availability: $5-$7 and available at most drugstores.
L’Oreal Miss Manga Mascara
loreal_miss_manga_mascara
This has a quite unique brush and a wet formula. The shape of the brush really does give the Manga kind of effect which is really cool.
Pros: Great brush. Adds length and some volume.
Cons: Can get real clumpy real fast. This really flaked all over my face after the tube had been open for about a week.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 1
Would I repurchases: Maybe. I didn’t care for the flaking, but I loved the effect otherwise.
Pricing and Availability: $6-$9 and available at most drugstores.
Wet n’ Wild Single Eyeshadow in Brulee
wnw_creme_brule
This made it into my 2014 favorites so I’m not going to say much other than that I love it. This particular pan has broken and been repaired twice and there isn’t really enough product left to be able to revive it again.
Pros: Super affordable. Super accessible. Great matte highlight/base shade for fair/light skinned folks. Soft, pigmented, good quality eyeshadow.
Cons: Can get a little dusty. Because it is so soft it does break easily.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 2
Would I repurchase: I already have!
Pricing and availability: A whopping $.99! Available at most drugstores and a fair number of grocery stores.
EOS Smooth Sphere Lipbalm in Medicated Tangerine
eos_tangerine_lip_balm
I love the packaging of EOS lipbalms but I don’t find them particularly moisturizing. In fact, this one is a little drying and actually made my lips feel itchy and irritated when I used it over time (Hello scary active ingredients!).
Ingredients:
Active ingredients: Phenol 0.5%. Inactive ingredients: Beeswax/Cera Alba (Cire d’abeille), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Camellia Oleifera (Tea) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin) Seed Oil, Flavor (Aroma), Stevia Rebaudiana Leaf/Stem Extract, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Extract, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Benzyl Benzoate*, Citral*, Limonene*, Linalool*. *Component of Natural Flavor.
Ok, so I don’t ACTUALLY know how scary the active ingredients are, but my preliminary googling doesn’t look good. This rates as a very high irritant and not particularly safe on CosDNA.
Pros: Handy packaging.
Cons: I found this drying and irritating.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 1
Would I repurchase: No
Pricing and availability: Around $4.00 at most drugstores and grocers.
We’re getting close to the end, I promise!
Hugo Boss Deep Red
hugo_boss_deep_red
I mentioned this in my one solitary perfume post as being my first signature scent. I started wearing this in college and it holds a really strong olfactory nostalgia for me. It has a fruity (citrus mostly) opening and settles into a sandalwood, vanilla musk that is lovely. The sillage is fairly soft so this is a nice go-to for me when I don’t actually feel like knocking people out with my perfume. This perfume was released in the early 2000’s and I’m not sure that it’s still being mass produced any more.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 3-4
Would I repurchase: I already have 🙂
Pricing and Availability: $30-$40. Available on eBay, Walmart website, Target website and various online retailers. I purchased my most recent bottle from the pushy sales people at the perfume kiosk at the mall. Next time I think I’ll order online.
We are officially in the home stretch!
Physicians Formula Argan Wear BB Cream
physicians_formula_argan_bb_cream physicians_formula_argan_bb_cream_back_label physicians_formula_argan_bb_cream_back_packaging physicians_formula_argan_bb_cream_front_packaging physicians_formula_argan_bb_cream_packaging_ingredients
Like a fool, I got all excited to find a BB cream with only physical barrier sunscreen and I didn’t read the ingredients to the end to note that this does contain fragrance. And boy does this contain fragrance. It smells like a combination of incense, old perfume that has gone off and maybe an old folks home with a dash of baby powder. I smelled this on my face ALL DAY LONG. I also had to re-wash my face brushes because any brush that touched my face after this was applied smelled super strong even 2 and 3 days later. This had a dewy finish but when I applied a light layer of powder over it, it separated a bit on my cheeks.
Ingredients:
  • Titanium Dioxide, Zinc Oxide, Inactive Ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Bis-PEG/PPG-14/14 Dimethicone, C30-45 Alkyl Cetearyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, Mica, Sodium Chloride, Glycerin, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Polysorbate 60, Castor Oil Phosphate, Disodium EDTA, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Laureth-12, Neopentyl Glycol Diheptanoate, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Polysilicone-11, Propylene Carbonate, Sodium Hydroxide, Tin Oxide, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Xanthan Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hexylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance, May Contain: Iron Oxides, Titanium Dioxide
 Pros: A good amount of physical sunscreen.
Cons: Seriously overpowering fragrance. Contains a few irritants. Only available in Light and Light/Medium. Pricey for a drugstore BB cream.
Number of times I’ve purchased: 1
Would I repurchase: No. I only used this one time and I’m throwing the rest of it away.
Pricing and availability: $15.00. Available at Walmart and CVS (I’m sure it’s available elsewhere but those are the only places in my area that carry Physicians Formula.
Here are a few rather startling pictures of ma face with this product:
pf_argan_bb_cream_review_bare_face
#IWokeUpLikeThis seriously though.

pf_argan_bb_cream_review_just_bb_cream pf_argan_bb_cream_review_full_face

pf_argan_bb_cream_review_after_8_hours_super_scary_close_up
This may have actually been my longest post yet. Obviously I had lots of thoughts today!
Have you tried any of these products? Did you have completely different opinions? Do share!
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