I love seeing other peoples empties! So I decided to make a board where people could post pictures of their empties, or just tell us about them! I'd also be interested in knowing whether you're repurchasing anything or not.
Re: Empties[ Edited ]
July 2016 Empties
I tried to finish as many products as I could in July, since I finished my semester abroad and I'm
already back home. I'm happy that I have my stash in front of me now though, and that I have more products that I can work on !
Bath & Body Works Sweet Pea Gentle Foaming Hand Soap : While not my favorite smell from the body line, I really enjoyed Sweet Pea as a hand soap scent. It was light and pleasant. The foaming soaps are not drying on my skin and they are doing a super great job at cleaning. I also enjoy the fact that you can reach the bottom of the bottle with no problem. * Would repurchase the Sweet Pea smell again. I still have a bunch of hand soaps to go through first though.
Shiseido Pureness Balancing Softener Alcohol-Free : Holy grail toner ! It works so well for my combination skin. I notice a big improvement in my skin when using this product daily. It definitely prevent my skin from getting super oily and makes it softer. It does not irritate my skin and is not overly perfumed. * Already repurchased it.
Bath & Body Works Pink Chiffon Anti-Bacterial Hand Gel : I looooove the Pink Chiffon smell. The pocketbac’s smell is a bit overwhelming however, so you should only use a small amount. It has glitters in it, but it goes away quite fast. Doesn’t leave my hands sticky and is great at cleaning. * Have a few backups of this particular smell. I have a large stash of other scents to use up too but would repurchase in the future.
The Face Shop Real Nature Mask Rice : As usual it did help with dark circles and the results were long lasting on my skin. I always have it in my empties, to give you an idea of how much I like it. * Have some backups left and will totally repurchase again in the future.
The Face Shop MasCream Sheet Brightening : Absolutely love the cream sheet masks from The Face Shop. It was super moisturising and the cream did absorb very well into my skin. It didn’t leave my skin feeling greasy afterward and had a great brightening effect. It definitely made my skin looks good. * Have 2 backups left. Will repurchase it later.
John Frieda Full Repair Strenghten + Restore Conditioner : A really nice conditioner to use when using heating tools on your hair. It limited the apparition of split ends and helped with existing ones as well. It also worked great for detangling my hair. The scent was light and pleasant. * Will repurchase it.
Maybelline The Falsies Big Eyes Volum’Express Mascara : I’m not a big fan of the top lashes formula since it’s a bit too wet to my liking. However, the bottom lashes mascara is amazing !! The brush is the perfect size and the product isn’t overly wet. It also dries up super fast, so it won’t create a mess. * Already repurchased a backup and will rebuy in the future.
Ebelin 140 Wattepads : Very nice cotton pads, especially for the price tag (0.85 euro cents). It didn’t leave a plush residue on my face and it was thick enough. Quite soft too, but they were a bit small, so I did need more than one to remove makeup. * Repurchased a smaller pack (70).
Balea Abenteurlust Duschgel : This was a super nice light smell and I really enjoyed the price tag on this product (0.55 euro) as well ! It didn’t dry out my skin and was very foamy. However, I found the product to be a bit too liquid and the smell not very long lasting on my skin. I ended up using it as a hand soap and it was very great for that. * Won’t be repurchasing this smell. I wouldn’t mind buying another smell from that line however if it was available locally.
Sephora Relaxing & Refreshing Green Tea Eye Mask : Gave great results, but not as much as the rose one. It felt relaxing on my tired skin and it did brighten my undereyes. My undereyes also looked less tired. Results lasted about 1 day and an half. * Would repurchase when it’s on sale.
The Face Shop Real Nature Pomegranate Face Mask : This mask does not exactly target my skin type, however I got free ones during a promotion at my local store. It did leave my skin feeling and looking good. I would have to use it more often to notice if it has any anti-aging properties as it claims. * Will probably buy it again in the future.
Crest Sensi-Relief Dentifrice (Sample) : Used this toothpaste after I had some sensibility problems with my teeth and it solved it after only a few uses. It is also whitening, but the sample size wasn’t enough for me to see a real result. The minty taste wasn’t too strong and was very pleasant. * Would repurchase it when I find it on sale.
Betty Barclay Tender Blossom Eau de Toilette : A nice light and fresh scent to use in the spring/summer. It wasn’t very long lasting, but for the price it was not bad at all. I really enjoyed the litchi and melon top notes in it. * Wouldn’t repurchase since (to my knowledge) it’s not available in Canada (and I have plenty of fragrances to use already).
Bebe Young Care Granatapfel Smoothie Duschgel : Very great shower gel, even though it was a bit more liquid than what I usually like for shower gels’ formulas. I wish it was a bit thicker, since I went through the bottle faster than I wished. The smell was wonderful and it lingered on the skin for a long time. Price tag was low for the quality of the product. * Would buy again if it was available in Canada.
Colgate Total Whitening Toothpaste : This did really help with withening my teeth and I enjoyed that it was not overly minty. However, it did make my teeth feel really sensible towards the end of the tube and it stopped when I switched to a new toothpaste. * Have one backup of it left. Will use it and see if it causes sensibility again.
Nivea Gentle Toner : I was bummed out by how perfumed this toner was. I didn’t enjoy the smell of it either and it was very overpowering. It was great for when my skin was dry and was soothing, but it didn’t control breakouts as well as other toners I have tried. Price tag was good however. * Wouldn’t repurchase it.
Garnier Skin Naturals Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Combination & Sensitive Skin : As much as I like the formula for sensible skin (the one with the red cap), I didn’t enjoy this one. It made my eyes burn if I tried to remove my eye makeup with it. I used it for my face instead, which was great, but I didn’t see a difference with my combination skin however. I will stick to the one with a red cap. * Wouldn’t repurchase if it became available in North America.
Balea Vitalizing Shampoo Lemongras & Grüne Minze : This dried up my scalp pretty badly towards the end of the bottle. I never had dry scalp problems until now. It felt itchy and uncomfortable. The shampoo smells nice but it is way too strong, it was probably my worst experience ever with a shampoo. * Would never repurchase it.
It's good stuff but I think it's best to use in combination with another serum since it will help it work better. I didnt care too much for it if used alone.
I am currently trialing the UFO oil so won't be repurchasing GG for now
Gold Bond Ultimate Healing Aloe Lotion- Moisturizing for a medium density formula. The more I use this, the less greasy I think it feels. PINCHme originally introduced me to a sample of this product, but I love it more each time I purchase it.
Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist- I won this from Allure Free Stuff. This is a very affordable deep conditioner that does a wonderful job. My hair does look less frizzy and feel softer when I use this, so I believe it is a wonderful drugstore product. Sam's Club had a great deal on a 3-pack of these recently, so I will not need any more for a while.
Ole Henriksen Power Bright- I received this from Sephora and Ole Henriksen in exchange for my honest review. It is a 3-step system that includes: Truth Sugar Glow Polishing Mask, Truth 25% Vitamin C Concentrate, and Pure Truth™ Melting Cleanser. The steps work to bring smooth, bright skin. After some user error with the first application, I had a beautiful result on the second. This is a great product and the Melting Cleanser is a product I would purchase separately.
h2o+ Sea Salt Skin Smoother- This is incredible. It scrubs without being too gentle or too rough. There is oil in it that leaves my skin feeling soft. I do not even add a separate body cream on days I use this all over, and my skin still feels hydrated.
Incoco Coconut Nail Art Nail Polish Strips- These were relatively easy to apply and lasted on my fingers an impressive nine days. They looked incredible for the first four days, started peeling a bit around day 5, and really moved from the base by day seven. The tips did not budge until the 9th day though, so it just looked like grow-out until that point. Cleanup was very sticky, and it took a long time to get all the stickiness off my hands. The tradeoff is worth it considering these are the best nail stickers I've tried.
Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser- This is everything I want in a cleanser. It foams incredibly well, cleanses deeply, and rinses squeaky clean. My skin does not feel tight or dry, because it does not strip the moisture out of my skin. I love the way it smells, too.
Go Smile Double Action Whitening System- This is the only whitener I've used that actually works on tooth colored fillings, that is relatively pain-free. It does not hurt my gums or my overly sensitive teeth. The actual whitening is mild, but noticeable.
Jack Black Industrial Strength Hand Healer- It moisturizes without a greasy feeling. The smell is not as manly as I feared. I would not buy it, but I will use it when my husband gets it.
Oral B Pro Glide Floss- Like the name indicates, it glides through teeth. It has never gotten stuck in my teeth like cheaper glosses do. Some glosses taste like you’re feasting on a candle or a bad mint candy. This one has almost no taste at all.
Number 4™ Clarifying Shampoo- This smells nice (not the best but good for a clarifying shampoo). It lathers well and rinses extremely clean. I notice it clears build up without stripping my natural hair oil or causing overly frizzy hair. If the clarifying shampoos I purchased recently do not work out, this is the one I will purchase.
By Terry Baume de Rose- It's not a surprise that this will be a FabuFind, because I dedicated an entire article to how much I love this product. This is my favorite lip balm of all time (which I will compare to a lot of other lip balms in an article publishing next month). There is nothing I do not love about this product. The packaging is beautiful, and I like that it is in a jar. It helps me get every last drop out (which I appreciate on a product this expensive). When applying a lip balm from a jar, it is also easy to remember to put excess product on my cuticles. This works better on my cuticles than most products designed to help them. I love the beautiful pale pink sheen this creates. It is not as matte as a regular balm or as shiny as a gloss. This is beautifully dewy. The formula is comfortable, moisturizing, does not taste bad on my lips, and I love that it has SPF. It smells like faint roses, so the scent is not overpowering.
Rituals Ginkgo’s Secret Hand Balm- I have yet to smell anything from this line that did not remind me a being in an ethereal garden. Everything smells heavenly and so different. This is no different. It is a really rich formula, so I loved using this in winter. After thinking I lost it sometime back in March or April, I discovered it again in July and finished it up. Things can run but they cannot hide forever (unless they are a sunscreen spray I have not seen in almost a year that will probably expire before I find it). If this was not $17 for 2.5oz, I would certainly buy it. That's a little extreme for a hand cream, even though I now want to run through a Ginkgo Garden for some great smelling, deeply moisturizing treatments.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar- My son wanted to buy this on a trip to Target when his CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser was not in stock. Thinking this would be like every other bar soap that leaves a film on my skin, I refused to buy it. I told him I would order his liquid cleanser online when we got home. Then, my husband received it in a Target Beauty Box. After using a different bar soap on half my body and this on the other half, I noticed this is better. I liked it so much that I showered again using only this. There is no doubt in my mind that this bar soap does not leave a film on my skin. Both times I moisturized right after, so I cannot say if this is more moisturizing than another soap. That is a determination for someone who does not slather in lotion afterward, but I hate skipping even for the sake of reviews. Sorry! This is still a bar soap, so I will not buy it for myself (I just prefer liquids). When I buy this for my son, I was occasionally use it though.
Advil Rapid Release Formula- This is not a beauty product, and I take over the counter pills often for frequent headaches. I am only sharing this one, because I received it as a free sample from Target. It deserves a review. The gels work a little faster than the other products from this brand, so they are the ones I purchase. If I have a headache, I typically prefer Excedrin. These are nice to have on hand for muscle aches and other pains.
Ulta Moisture Cleanse Hand Soap Sparkling Lemon- I love these hand soaps, and can equate them to my current Pokémon craze. It would be nice to "catch" them all. This scent is not a strong and a little more pleasant than the Eucalyptus Mint from last month. This leaves my skin feeling extremely clean, and I love the lather. There were two times while using this where I did not immediately moisturize, and I could tolerate it. Most washes make me want to climb the wall when I cannot moisturize upon drying.
Julep It's Fun to Exfoliate- It helps with lather, so I use less soap. Between uses, it dries out. To let it completely dry out, I’ve been alternating liquid and bar soaps. By the second day, it is completely dry. This perfect sponge was already labeled a FabuFind.
Blue Stop Max Massage Gel for Body Aches- This thin, blue gel worked about as well as my Elemis gel, which is a lot more expensive. I will probably buy a full size and alternate this with the Elemis to see which one works better. It is a topical analgesic that soothes and penetrates deeply. The formula has a special mixture of Cetylated Fatty Acids, Emu Oil, MSM, Glucosamine, Aloe Vera, and Menthol. It is safe for daily use for rapid relief of muscle and joint soreness, and it delivers fast and effective relief for overall body aches. I really appreciate it after a tough workout.
Willing to Try Again
Asprey London Purple Water Conditioner- I like the smell. My hair looks decent post use. It is a little on the thin side, and I do not feel it conditions as well as a thicker conditioner does. Although I do not feel the need to buy it, I will gladly use samples when we stay at the Ritz Carlton again.
Sunday Riley Good Genes- This is a well-reviewed serum, but it did not live up to my expectations. The smell is awful, and it takes forever to fade. Imagine walking into a healthy foods juice bar and smelling all the vegetables blending together, and that is close to what this smells like. I did notice a slight improvement in moisture, so I would not completely write this off. If this anti-aging serum works, it takes longer than this 0.25oz sample to see the results. Although I do not expect serums to work overnight, I expect to see something by the end of a deluxe sample.
benefit Bad Gal Mascara- After hating They're Real (the most popular mascara on the planet), a benefit rep explained that wet formulas are not great for hooded eyes. She suggested this and said I would love it. I did not. It was not terrible, because it does stay on my lashes for the most part, unlike They're Real which always transferred to my face. The problem is it did not do much in the way of defining or volumizing, although it does better than the Neutrogena one I tried recently.
Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Fresh Cut Split End Mender- This is technically a decent sized sample. I need so little for the ends of my hair that 0.33oz lasted over a month. The problem is it takes longer than a month to notice if a split end mender is actually working. It is possible this works and it is possible it doesn't. Unless I get a bigger sample, I will never know. This smells great and has a thick creamy feel, so I want to believe it is working.
Mario Badescu Hyaluronic Eye Cream- In Get Free Samples Volume One, I mention how I received this freebie. Although your freebies would be based on your skin concerns, this option is still available to anyone who has not redeemed it. That said, I am not certain this is the perfect eye cream for someone with really dry under eye skin. When I used this, my skin still felt a little tight. This feels almost like glycerin and takes a while to seep into the skin. It should lock in skin's own moisture, but my skin does not have a lot of moisture. At the 10x points event for Ulta last year, I picked up a second sample of this. I may keep it to use as a serum under a thicker cream or give it away. There is still time to decide.
Sephora Collection Pomegranate Face Mask- This mask is for anti fatigue and energizing and while I doubt it literally means it does either of those things, it does what I want a mask to do, moisturize. Masks are so relaxing and unless I have a bad reaction or they do not give the moisture I want, there will probably almost always fall in my love category. Some people do bubble baths to relax, and I put on a sheet mask. If I try this again and notice any fatigue reduction or energizing, I will bump this up to a FabuFind.
Institute Swiss Omni Resorts Chamomile Shampoo- The shampoo did not lather as well as I would have liked or rinsed as clean as I would have hoped. It did not seem to add or take away frizz, so I will use this during and after stays at the Omni. I would not seek this product out.
Institute Swiss Omni Resorts Aloe and Honey Conditioner- The conditioner is on the thin side, and I typically like a thicker conditioner to coat my hair. It did not seem to add or take away frizz, so I will use this during and after stays at the Omni. I would not seek this product out.
Not For Me
DERMAdoctor Brazilian Bombshell- I love Shrinking Beauty from this brand, so I high expectations for this product. Not only did this sunscreen seem to do nothing to smooth skin, but it did not even protect my skin from the sun. My skin burned! This does not smell good either, so my husband thought it went bad. The expiration date was June 2016, and I finished this within the first few days of July. Unless it went bad way before its expiration date, there is no excuse for it smelling bad and not protecting me from the sun, even if I can forgive it not smoothing my skin.
Josie Maran Argan Lip Treatment in Heaven- I've tried a lot of lip balms (and actually am writing a comparison series I will publish sometime next month), and this is one of the worst ever. Its only saving grace keeping it from the very bottom is it does not taste bad. There is nothing worse than a bad tasting lip balm, because it is impossible to keep lip products away from your taste buds. This has a very faint pale pink color that looks like a nude lip balm on my lips. The first time I used this in June 2014, it did not do much. My lips did not feel moisturized, and the formula faded quickly. While this was still somewhat fresh, my bottom lip cracked, an actual crack with blood and everything. That's never happened while I had a lip balm on before. After a month, I worked up the courage to try it again. No joke, my bottom lip cracked again.
That use was in July of 2014, and I have not been brave enough to try it a third time. So, I tossed a lip balm only used twice. It may not have been a bad product, but the bad luck I experienced with it means it is not for me. Unless I have an allergic reaction or REALLY hate something, I try to finish it. Not finishing something speaks volumes on just how much I hate it. Josie Maran does not even make this anymore, so I wonder if anyone else hated it as badly as I did.
Lush Ultra Bland Facial Cleanser- This makeup remover is a thick emollient that always left my skin feeling soft no matter which cleanser I used with this. I love a squeaky clean feeling, so I always used this as step one of a double cleanse. Even though my skin felt soft and moisturized, I seemed to get new acne almost every time I used this. Something in it clogs my pores. Although I forced myself to finish this, I would not use it again.
The dermadoctor doesn't really smell good even when it's new. I do like how moisturizing it us though.
And ouch! It sounds as though you may have an allergy to something in that lip balm. That happened when I used the Tarte lipsurgence pencils. I'm not sure which ingredient it is, but maybe I will investigate further cause I'll be getting one in my August ipsy bag.
Could you describe your experience (smell, effectiveness) of the Dermadoctor shrinking beauty, please.
When you're talking about the Sunday Riley Good Genes, do you mean it smells like veggies?
I've been interested in both of those products, and I like your thorough reviews
Copying and pasting the review for that below, but I did not mention scent in the review so I will add that here. It did not have much of a scent that I can recall. I never applied it anywhere remotely near my nose though, so it could have one. I only used it on my thighs and bottom.
DERMADoctor Shrinking Beauty– I never would have purchased this, because I’ve read cellulite is fat underneath the skin. The fat looks bumpy because it pushes against connective tissue. Creams cannot target cellulite. This sample came inside the Sephora Summer Crushes kit I bought to try other products. Although I thought this would be a total waste, I decided to try it. It seems crazy, but it worked every time. My skin looked less dimpled when I used it. It was a magical cream that I did not understand or even believe. How does it work? Is it a trick?
Since I cannot seem to get rid of my dimples naturally and am not yet willing to try surgery, I will gladly use this in the future. The effects do wash away as the product wears off, so it sadly will not work for improving cellulite appearance when you’re swimming. Yes, I tried. The pool water washed away the effects of my magic cream. I am still on the lookout for something strong enough to hide it for swimsuits and will let you know if I find it. Unfortunately, I have cellulite no matter how fit I am, so losing weight will not help.
The Sunday Riley does not just smell like veggies. It smells like a juice bar that serves greens. Like Wheatgrass in a blender. It is not a pleasant smell, so I have a hard time drinking my greens. I can eat them in the Greens Plus Bars at Whole Foods, but I prefer the ones coated in dark chocolate.
Re: Empties[ Edited ]
Thank you for the heads up on the smell of the Sunday Riley. I will probably only try it if I come across a sample packet. It's supposed to be gluten free and it seems like it gets a lot of hype, so I feel like I need to check it out.
I had thought about trying the Dermadoctor shrinking beauty for body skin that maybe could be tightened with the cream, but this doesn't really seem like the answer for that. Your review seems pretty spot on with the other reviews I've seen for it.
Thank you for responding!
edit: I didn't think to mention before, I think I've seen where a combination of heat and massaging areas with cellulite is supposed to help. I saw something on tv years ago about it. I could be wrong though.