A month of Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye serum

Good morning my darlings. Can you guess what time it is? That’s right it is time to look at the Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye Serum with hyaluronic Acid and it’s effects on my skin, most notably the fine lines around my eyes, after a full thirty days of use. To give full disclosure Terravibe did gift this eye serum to me to to try out for the purpose of review. However, all of the thoughts and opinions are my own. This is my skin and my opinions of how this particular serum worked on it.

Before we get into the results and the before and after pictures, let’s talk a little bit about the serum. Age Defying is a pretty broad term. Age defying in an eye serum generally means trying to make those pesky fine lines at the edges of your eyes caused by several decades of smiling look a little less prominent. At least that is how I interpret it.

And if you are going to look at plumping up those fine lines hyaluronic acid is a great place to start. It essentially attracts moisture to the skin and locks it in, the fullness of the hydration tends to plump the skin lessening the appearance of those pesky little fine lines. If you are looking for a more detailed scientific explanation, this article will help you out with all of those details.

I personally like to think about it like a water balloon. When you have just a little water in it, the balloon is a bit saggy and droopy. If you put more water in it then the balloon gets tighter and smoother. Hyaluronic Acid is more or less the funnel by which the water gets into the balloon that is your skin.

This is also why deionized water is the first ingredient on the skincare label for the Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye Serum. If the Hyaluronic Acid is going to put water into the skin it has to take if from somewhere. So why not have it in the serum. This seems to be fairly standard in Hyaluronic acid based serums, or at least the ones I have tried.

But what about the CBD? Like the Hyaluronic Acid it is listed on the label, and indeed it is listed first on the label. I’ll admit, I know a lot more about hyaluronic acid in skin care than I know about CBD in skincare. Mostly because CBD in skincare is still being researched. Or at least that is what I could find out. Nearly every article I found about CBD use in skincare had the sentence “Research is still ongoing.” Or some form of this sentence. The word “Promising” also appeared a number of times.

What I could find points to CBD as an anti-oxidant that reduces inflammation and the damage done to skin by free-radicals. Like many others, my research is on going. This article was one of the best concise run downs of CBD benefits. Others were more technical, but this was one of the more helpful and easy to understand articles.

So given everything that I found, I was expecting to see a minimization of some of my fine lines as well as a reduction in skin damage.

All things I would like to see.

So, The serum was opened. And used. For a full month.

The serum itself is a fairly thin liquid and the directions indicate that a dime sized amount should be used once each morning on your neck face and upper chest. And so this is what I did. The thin serum absorbed quickly. I could probably have gone in almost immediately with a moisturizer after the serum but I like to give serums a little time to settle in and make themselves comfortable before applying the moisturizer. However, on the mornings when things were a bit hurried, I didn’t have to wait as long. My skin just soaked it in like a sponge and there was no greasy feeling left behind.

Because it is an eye serum, I started my application around the eyes and then worked my way out around the rest of my face and down to my neck and upper chest. I have some sun damage remaining from this summer’s heat wave despite my reliance on sunscreen, and I was hoping to give it a little boost in any way possible. Of course by the time I reached my neck most of the serum was absorbed into my face.

Now you may also see in the picture that although the bottle comes with an eye dropper, it is an eye dropper with a bit of a bend in it. I found this interesting. With the recommended dose and the recommended once daily use, the amount of product lasts about 30 days. I am at this point scraping the bottom of the bottle. This makes the eye dropper a nice addition to the packaging. For the first two weeks, the curved eye dropper worked like any other eye dropper. It picked up product, I dispensed the product into my hand and used the product.

On the third week, the dropper picked up less product and so I had to do two pumps to get my dime sized amount. Odd but not too much of a problem. Then as I entered week four, it suddenly went back to working as it had in the beginning. I think that the curve in the dropper is designed so that you can get all of the last drops of the serum from the bottle even when it is low. The curve lets it suck the product from around the edges more easily.

Admittedly it took me a few minutes to work that out and I stared stupidly at the bottle trying to figure out how more product got into the bottle. I put on my skincare while the coffee is brewing and I am not at my brightest pre-caffeinated. Once I realized the shape was working for me, I was less confused. There was just a week in the middle there where the shape made it less effective, but still easily used and not really an issue. It is just something to note if you are using the eye serum.

But now that we have chatted about it’s use, how did it perform? Well…

Before on the left and after on the right

Personally I would say it performed really well. There is a definite decrease in the lines at the side of my eye. I took the after photo on Friday, January 7th. I had a bit of a cold so there is actually more puffiness under the eyes than there has been. But the deepest line at the side of my eyes is significantly reduced. Quite honestly I was very impressed.

While the results on the lines are really good, what you might not be able to see in the photos is that the texture of my skin is quite improved as well. The CBD Age Defying Eye Serum from Terravibe was designed, as the name says, for the eyes. And that is where it showed the most results. But the serum was spread all over the face and neck and my skin did feel more hydrated, less winter dry and softer all round in texture. I did have some wind burn on my cheeks that has cleared up and my skin just simply feels good. I was very impressed with the Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye Serum and not only would I use this serum again, I want to try out more from the brand and I want to do more research on CBD products.

If there is one downfall it is that there is not a lot of information on the Terravibe site. I think their website might still be developing and I hope they do put more information up soon. Of course even if they did have the information up, you know I’d go looking for more information. You know how much I love research. Detailed website or not, this CDB Age Defying Eye Serum is certainly one to keep on the list.

Trying out the Lancome Genifique Youth Activating Eye Cream

Lancôme Advanced Genifique Yeux  Youth Activating Smoothing Eye cream

Normally with skincare a sample will only give me about two weeks’ worth of product. This is enough to let me do a first impressions post, but not get a full idea of how well a product works.  However eye creams are different. 

With an eye cream so little of the product is actually needed that my little sample of Lancôme Genifique Youth Activating Smoothing Eye cream actually lasted a full month.  The last day was sort of squeezing the last drops from the tube, but it did last a month.

This sample actually came to me in a Birchbox Advent Calendar. While the Advent calendar itself wasn’t a favorite, I was very excited to receive this sample of Lancôme Eye cream.  To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever tried any Lancôme product before.  I wracked my brain trying to come up with a product I’ve tried from them because I have been hearing of the brand Lancôme for years and it seems like I should have tried something from them, but I really don’t think I have. 

Surprisingly there a couple of brands like this.  Brands that I have heard of for a long time and think I must somehow know, but somehow never tried.  Oddly Estee Lauder is another one for me.  I don’t think I’ve ever tried anything from them either which seems almost as inconceivable to me as not trying Lancôme before now.

But now I am trying it.  So what should I expect from the Lancome Genifique eye cream?

A fresh, gel-like eye cream, powered by Advanced Genifique’s Bifidus extract, to improve dark circles, hydrate, and smooth the eye area.

Advanced Genifique’s eye cream features a new lightweight gel-like texture that blends into the eye area with a soft, velvety finish. The formula, featuring Advanced Genifique’s signature Bifidus extract, helps to strengthen and protect skin’s moisture barrier around the delicate eye area. Immediately, the eye area is softer and more hydrated. Over time, the appearance of dark circles are reduced and the eye area is smoother.

This product is safe for sensitive eyes. It is allergy tested under ophthalmological and dermatological control.


Lancome website

Don’t worry I won’t be breaking down all of the ingredients in this one.  I will say though that I like that the last ingredient listed is fragrance, which means that it is in such a low concentration that it has been dropped to the bottom. Truthfully, I didn’t gt any fragrance from the eye cream.  I tried sniffing the tube and got nothing and then I tried putting a drop on my hand to sniff and the only thing I got was my body wash (currently Olay – light scent, super foaming and super hydrating, highly recommend). So if there is a scent it is a very light one.

I also wanted to mention the Bifida Ferment Lysate it is a probiotic which helps balance your skin’s ph and encourages the good bacteria needed that cleansers can actually destroy (along with the dirt and makeup residue) so probiotics are actually good for your skin. Most of the places I’ve come across it when looking this ingredient up claim it as sort of a miracle ingredient.  I think Estee Lauder uses it in their Advanced night care and claims it repairs DNA.  While studying the effects of an ingredient on my DNA is beyond my capabilities, I do know that Bifida Ferment Lysate does help hydrate and strengthen the skin barrier.  As I’m applying the eye cream on the delicate eye area, this is a good thing.  It is also the third ingredient listed on the list, which means there is a pretty high concentration of it in the product, which is also a good thing.

The cream itself is a light gel cream. And in eye creams, lightweight is key. Too heavy and it doesn’t blend in well and as eye cream sits under your moisturizer, you need to be lighter weight. Only a tiny dot of cream is needed for each eye.  I know a lot of people put large dots on the crows’ feet area and then dot underneath, in fact that is what the image on the website page for the Lancome site for this eye cream show.  Personally I have always found this to be far too much product. For me the area just under my eyes along the orbital bone, is prone to getting clogged pores. What I tend to do is put a tiny droplet on my finger, massage it into the crow’s feet area and take the remainder under the eyes.  It gives me enough to hydrate but not enough to clog pores.  With some eye creams even this low level of product application can clog pores.

I did not have that problem with the Lancome eye cream.  The gel formula was light enough that it could be gently massaged in without clogging pores.  It absorbed quickly and well and layered beautifully under my moisturizer. I was very impressed with it. This is one of those products where less is better.  I tried adding more, in imitation of the photos on the site, but it was simply too much product for me.  With me a small dose applied consistently twice a day (morning and night) worked so much better than adding more.

I apologize for the color change as the light in my bathroom changes significantly depending on the time of day. Hopefully you can still see some of the results in the lines by my eyes. despite the color difference. The image on the left is before I started with the eye cream and the image on the right is after 29 and a half days.

I have to say I really liked this eye cream and was very impressed by it’s performance.  It absorbed well without leaving my skin feeling greasy. I had no irritation or clogged pores and I did see a small improvement in the fine lines at the corner of my eyes.  I had just enough cream for a month’s worth of application but I think that with continued consistent use, this is a product that I would want to keep around in the full size.  For a while subscription boxes went a little eye cream crazy so I have several samples of eye cream to work through, but I have to say, of the ones I’ve tried in the past few months this is one that is towards the top of the list. 

At $67 per jar it is a little pricey, however the sample size is 0.10 fluid ounces and the full size jar is 0.5 fluid ounces worth of product making it literally five times the size. In theory that means the full size would last a full five months. The length of time the product would last, makes the price seem more reasonable to me. I will say that when I went looking for the eye cream I did have one concern about price. Or more accurately the different prices.

While this product is available on the Lancome website for $67 (all the links in this post go to the Lancome homesite, I have no affiliation with them and make absolutely nothing if you click on the links – but they are to the official Lancome site except the upcoming Amazon and Walmart sites.). However, if you do a general search, the same cream comes up on Amazon for $56.66 and on Walmart for $37.98. The jar is different, especially on the Walmart site.

The Lancome jar on the Lancome site is a beautiful black and shiny glass jar and the one pictured elsewhere is a matte jar that doesn’t actually look like glass. I think it might be plastic, and it certainly doesn’t look as high end as the one on the Lancome site.

That being said, I don’t know if the contents differed as I could not find a complete ingredients list on the Amazon or Walmart versions. If the jar is the only difference it would be nice. I’ll keep looking for the ingredients, but until I see a label, I am erring on the side of caution and sticking with the official version or this cream from the site. For this review, that is the one I tested. I think I may have to take the official ingredients list to the sotres with me and compare them in person before i feel confident in saying they are the same thing. They could be the same, I just don’t know.

I do know that I really liked the version that I tried.

Right now it is one of the top eye creams I’ve tried in the past few months.  I still have a few eye creams left to test out and make a determination on, but at the moment, Lancôme Genifique Youth Activating eye cream is the one to beat. And testing out the other eye creams will give me plenty of time to investigate the different jars and their contents.

Incidentally if you are interested in the Olay Body Wash I mentioned above, Olay is having a sale. You can follow the link below to rach it. I’ve actually found I need less body cream after my shower since I’ve been using the Olay moisturizing body wash.

25 percent Off Sitewide + Free Shipping!

Skipping the Needle with Goldfaden, MD Needle-less Line Smoothing Concentrate

This Goldfaden, MD Needle-less Line Smoothing Concentrate came in one of my Petit Vour Boxes and was paired with the Gel moisturizer also from Goldfaden, MD.  It was suggested that the two be used together, but alas the gel cream only had enough cream in the tube for three days of moisturizing and thus ran out well before this serum.  I wasn’t terribly sad about running out of the moisturizer as it was sticky and not a moisturizer I wanted to use long term. 

The gel and the concentrate

This serum however was one of the Goldfaden products that intrigued me most when I perused their site.. I am beginning to get some fine lines fanning out from my eyes and I feel the longer I can keep them at bay the better, so this sort of thing is right up my alley.  However, the full sized version of this product costs $110 so having a sample size to try first so that I know how it reacts to my skin before I go out and purchase it, makes me much more comfortable in spending the money.  Well, it makes me more comfortable purchasing it if I like the product.

Having the sample to try for the Goldfaden MD Needle-less Line Smoothing Concentrate is extra important for me as Goldfaden, MD products and my skin don’t always get along.  But before we go into how I felt about this sample, let’s see what I have been led to expect from the product page.

Dr. Goldfaden’s smoothing concentrate is the ultimate non-invasive solution to reduce the appearance of fine lines and deep creases.

Pure Hyaluronic Acid and advanced Hexapeptides make skin feel plump, appear firm and diminish the appearance of fine lines and deep creases. Nutrient-rich Seaweed Extract promotes a long-term, youthful-looking glow. With continued use, your skin will reap the benefits of looking younger, feeling smoother, and appearing more radiant. Ideal for all skin types.

Ingredients: Seaweed extract, Distilled Water, Hyaluronic Acid, Acetyl Hexapeptide – 3, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Red Tea Extract

Goldfaden, MD

Over all that isn’t a massive list of claims or a massive list of ingredients, so let’s break them down.

Seaweed is packed with all sorts of vitamins and minerals that skin tends to like and  is there to help soothe, soften, and reduce sensitivity, boost hydration, and can work as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Distilled water makes sense to see as if you are trying to plump skin up with moisture you need to get the moisture from somewhere. I find it nice that the concentrate provides it.

Hyaluronic Acid is quickly becoming one of my favorite skin care ingredients.  It  helps retain moisture, making it one of the most effective ingredients for hydrating skin. When applied, it creates a protective barrier, so the moisture stays locked inside the skin. In a product designed to plump the skin and fight wrinkles and fine lines this is a great ingredient to see.

The Concentrate is a thin clear liquid

As you know I am not a chemist, I had to do some looking into this one.  According to the site FutureDerm (an excellent site for looking up skin care information in basic easy to understand terms by the way) Acetyl Hexapeptide – 3 also known as argireline, is a neuropeptide which is often used as a muscle relaxer. It is a shortened peptide sequence of BotoxTM that is able to be used over-the-counter. I highly recommend reading the article linked in this paragraph if you are interested in more about this ingredient.It is fact filled, but not overly science-y.

Phenoxyethanol is a synthetic preservative that is useful for keeping all sorts of nasties from growing in your skin care and Ethylhexylglycerin is an emollient and humectant in skin care that boosts the anti-microbial performance of other ingredients to protect products from spoilage.

Finally, Red Tea extract is there as an anti-inflammatory agent that is said to fight dullness and fine lines and wrinkles.

So those are the ingredients that are in this Needle-less Line Smoothing Concentrate from Goldfaden MD.  I had a little over two weeks to try out the product. Unlike most serums you do not put this all over your face, you sort of spot treat the crow’s feet area and forehead wrinkles.  This of course uses less product so it will last longer. Normally, it takes thirty days to see real results, but I have to say I did see a small improvement after about a week of use.  Thus far it is actually the best Goldfaden MD product I have tried. 

I will say that when applied it also had a warming effect.  It was warm to the point where I double checked to see if it was burning my skin.  It wasn’t, there were no red spots or visible irritation, but this concentrate got uncomfortably warm on my skin.  The entire time I used this sample, I kept wondering if I was having a reaction to it. 

Now I will say that I had no actual allergic reaction.  There was no skin irritation, no inflamed patches or break outs. But every time I applied it, I felt very nervous. Even though it did plump out my fine lines, I was somewhat relieved when it ran out and my testing was through.  I think because my skin never got used to it, i.e. the burning lessening over time, I remained nervous.  Add to that the fact that I was putting it in my crow’s foot area right next to my eyes and the discomfort factor went up a couple of notches.  I am somewhat protective of my eyes.

Does it work? Yes. It worked well.

Will I by a full sized bottle? No. 

I just don’t like that burning feeling so close to my eyes.  If it went away the more I used it, this would be a different conversation, but it didn’t. My skin was uncomfortably warm and while the feeling faded after a few minutes of it on my skin I was very worried about how it would react with other products.

I think I panic researched every ingredient in every product I applied both before and after this concentrate to make sure there would be no reactions and even then, it just made me nervous to put something that burned that much so close to my eyes so often. Now in all fairness, there were no reactions.  So it could be just my paranoid nature speaking, but I also know myself.  Even though the serum did what it claims to do, I just wouldn’t use it if I purchased the bottle.  It would sit on my shelf and I would find excuses not to use it. I might dab it on once in a blue moon when I was going out and wanted to make certain my lines were as gone as possible, but I would not use it on a daily basis. So for me, this is not an item I will be purchasing. I wouldn’t chuck out a sample if it came my way again, but it would be used judiciously the week before a major event.

Three of the sites I used to provide more information regarding some of these ingredients are Simple Skin Care, Future Derm and the Paula’s Choice Skincare site.  If you are interested in learning more about skin care ingredients, you might want to check them out.  Paula’s Choice in general does a really good job of breaking down all sorts of ingredients. They also have really good products, but their articles about skincare topics are really great too.

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Is the GlamGlow Bright Eyes Eye Cream worth it?

I have always had a difficult relationship with GlamGlow products. I see them, they look interesting and I hear fantastic things about them. then I try them and am usually left feeling like I missed something. Clearly this product couldn’t be what everyone else is talik ng about can it? Its not that I find the products bad. They are decent products. But from the reactions of everyone else I always feel as though they got the super amped up version while I picked up the average one. I think this is why I keep going back to try more products from them.

This time around it is an eye cream. I believe I picked up this tiny little jar of GlamGlow Bright Eyes as an IPSY add on.  As small as it is, the little jar was packed absolutely full of product.  Since so little product actually needs to be applied, that tiny little jar will last a really long time.

What is GlamGlow Bright eyes?

An illuminating eye cream that instantly brightens dark circles and reduces the visible signs of fatigue around the entire eye area for a super well-rested, glowing look.

The description was not too over the top in terms of claims which I like. In fact it has mostly the same claims that any decent eye cream should have (otherwise what’s the point of applying the eye cream?).

The full 0.5 fl.oz. / 15ml size retails for $39.  The size I received is 0.1 oz/3 ml, if you would like the comparison. I’ve been using this product for two weeks (and yes this is the level of the product in the jar after two weeks of consistent use). I will be shocked if the 3 ml sized product lasts less than a full three months. So little product  is actually needed to put on your eyes that I can see a full sized jar lasting five to six months easily.

To apply I rubbed my clean finger along the top surface of the product. This small size is really good for that application actually. I didn’t have to dig into the product with nails or a spoon or anything, just along the top to gather product. The amount on my finger in the hoto is what was gathered for each eye using this method. So double the amount shown with each use (because I have two eyes – I know, rocket science).

There is no scent to this product other than a light scent of cream product.  So you will be spared my nose’s deliberations on the eye cream.  The only issue I had during the use of this product was that because the jar was so small I had to make certain my hands were completely dry before attempting to open it because it was hard to get a purchase on it with damp skin.

As i said before, GlamGlow products and I have a difficult past.  Some of the products I’ve tried I’ve disliked, but not hated, like the cleanser which left my skin feeling nice, but took forever to actually get rinsed off the skin, and some I liked but didn’t feel they were worth the price (various masks for the most part). I have to say, I liked this eye cream and I think it is actually worth the price. It may actually be my favorite GlamGlow product that I’ve tried. 

It went on well with a little bit of product needed.  I know it says immediate results and I did use the product for two weeks, but very few skin care products work instantaneously (and quite frankly I don’t really trust the ones that do). Generally speaking you need thirty days worth of testing on your skin to begin to see results. I can see that this is going in a positive direction though. My skin is hydrated and the fineles not as noticeable, although i don’t think they’ve actually shrunk. Most importantly it did not clog my pores while hydrating the under eye area. 

While I generally consider Glam Glow to be a kind of middle of the road brand with their products falling into my personal ranking of just okay, this is a product that actually shined. Not only will I happily continue using this eye cream, but I would consider purchasing a full sized jar.

Challans de Paris
Get rid of maskne with 50% OFF our Maskne Care Set! Hurry offer ends 10/18!

Testing the Tula Skincare’s Glow and Get it

For the last six or eight months I have heard people raving about Tula Skincare’s products. Everyone seems to love them. I received a sample of a Tula Cleanser (I believe it was in an IPSY Box) a while back and as everyone was raving about it I was super excited to try it.

I hated it.

And not just in an ‘I don’t think this cleanser is right for my skin type’ kind of way. It was intensely perfumed and did not leave my skin feeling clean. It was a hard pass for me.

And to be honest, I don’t like giving a lot of negative reviews. Most of the time the products I try are good products. If they don’t work for me I can usually see that they are either designed for a different skin type or to combat a problem i don’t have. I’ve also learned to pay more attention to ingredients lists and can avoid some products that I know are going to give me issues. After all why put my skin through the trauma I know would be coming, when I can just pass a product unopened to someone who will enjoy using it.

with the protective cap in place

When the Tula Skin Care Glow and Get It Calming and Brightening Eye Balm arrived in a subscription box I was on the fence about it. The only product I’d tried from Tula was the cleanser, but that didn’t mean I would hate the entire brand. There are many brands where I love some products and don’t like others. In fact most brands are like that. There are very few brands where every product is a hit for me. Admittedly, I get very excited when those brands do come up with something new, but that is another topic.

And I do love a good eye cream. The older I get, the more I find myself loving eye creams. Between the general aging process and my frequent bouts of insomnia, it is now a very important tool.

So I looked up what to expect from the product and decided to give it a try while keeping an open mind. According to the product page…

The game-changing, hyaluronic acid eye balm that started it all. Provides a lit-from-within glow while hydrating, cooling plus helping to reduce the look of fine lines & wrinkles around the eyes. Delivers an instant pick-me-up so you look refreshed, feel energized & can glow & get it!Deeply hydrates

  • Deeply hydrates
  • Firm & tighten the appearance of skin
  • Helps reduce the look of fine lines & wrinkles
  • Instantly brightens around & under the eyes
  • Provides immediate cooling
  • Leaves a dewy glow
  • Improve skin smoothness
  • Can help with the look of dark circles & puffiness around eyes
  • Travel-friendly
  • Use on cheekbones, cupid’s bow, nose & anywhere else you want a highlighting effect
The product

I have recently found from my trials with Timeless skincare that I really like Hyaluronic acid. I am beginning to think my forehead stress crack wrinkle has started absorbing all of it like some sort of Acid-aholic. So the fact that it was in this eye balm was encouraging. So I set my current eye cream to the side and began trying this out.

I like that it is in a stick format. Maybe it is because I like both Milk and Trestique products. However, the format made it easy and quick to apply. One swoop and the product was on my face. But you know me. The first thing I did when opening it and taking off the plastic protector cap was to sniff it. As I had many issues with the scent of the last Tula product I was hesitant.

This does not smell like perfume.

It does smell kind of like you put almond oil in an all natural kitchen cleaning spray. There is something antiseptic almost about the smell. It isn’t sweet, but nutty in an almond kind of way and antiseptic. It isn’t my favorite scent but the scent does fade.

So to the swoop around the eyes. On first application, it is silvery blue, and looks a bit like a cream highlighter. As you can see it better on my hand, I took the pictures there so it is more evident and there are fewer facial shadows. Clearly I wasn’t going around with this ringing around my eyes so I rubbed it in. And then it just looked greasy. I thought it might absorb, but it didn’t. Since I put the eye balm under makeup I didn’t worry too much, figuring powder would soon cover it up if nothing else.

product on hand as applied with the stick (two swipes)

But something interesting happened. If you read the description, you see that it is supposed to have a cooling effect. And it did. I felt a cooling sensation under my eyes and I did feel more awake because of it. As I often use a refrigerated stone roller under my eyes when I am tired in the afternoons, it isn’t surprising. So I put powder over the greasy looking spots and went about my day.

The powder stuck to the spots where the eye balm was placed like cotton batting velcro. It wasn’t going anywhere and as a consequence, the under eye area did look brighter.

However with each application, the cooling sensation faded so that by the fifth day of use there was no noticeable cooling effect from the eye balm. So that benefit was gone. I don’t know if my skin just got used to it and stopped reacting or what, but it was no longer there, and I kind of missed it.

product massaged in. the greasy look never went away

Now those of you who frequently read my posts you know that under my eyes I am prone to getting clogged pores. They are often the bane of my skincare. The masks weren’t helping, but I found some masks that were cut just slightly lower so they land slightly below my trouble spots but still protect my mouth and nose. with that and my current skin care regimen, my clogged pores have been greatly reduced.

After about a week of using this product, they began to multiply again. I tried varying placement of the product but given the size of the stick and the amount it had to be rubbed in to make it no ,onger look like highlighter, avoiding the area completely was impossible. I started applying it with a cotton swab (as in rubbing the cotton swab on the stick and then applying the swab to my skin. It sort of defeated the purpose of the stick, but it let me avoid the problem areas.

The issue is that there weren’t really any benefits. The cooling sensation faded, my skin felt greasy, my pores were clogged and I really didn’t see a difference in the fine lines around my eyes. Put quite simply, I’ve had way better results with other products that didn’t cause me issues.

Now I’m not saying the entire brand is bad, mostly because I haven’t tried the entire brand and can’t judge a product until I try it. But I can honestly say that this product is not for me. I like the idea of it, but it just didn’t work. I won’t be buying this again and I won’t be picking it up to add to any skin care themed family member’s baskets for my upcoming christmas and birthday gift buying extravaganza either.

Alyaka Beauty Advent Calendar Luxe 2020

Reviewing the GlossyBox Skincare Eye Boost Cream

While many of you may have heard of the Glossy Box Beauty Subscription, in August the brand launched their very own skincare line.  They took the feedback from subscribers regarding what they liked and didn’t like about the current skin care options and came up with a range of products.  August was their Birthday month and in that month’s Glossy Box a full sized tube of the GlossyBox Skincare Eye Boost cream was inside.

So what is this eye boost cream?

Tired eyes? This fragrance free Eye Boost Cream is a super lightweight, fast-absorbing formula that reduces the appearance of dark circles and depuffs your under-eye area, leaving skin looking bright and fresh. ​ ​Elderflower extract reduces the appearance of dark circles​. Eyebright plant extract works to refresh tired, puffy eyes. Red seaweed creates a protective barrier that locks in moisture around the delicate eye area​

Following a two-week trial with 110 panellists between August and December 2019:​
86% of women agreed that the Eye Boost Cream left their eye area looking instantly brighter.
86% of women agreed that the Eye Boost Cream instantly boosted tired-looking eyes​

While in general I don’t have terribly dark circles under my eyes, they so tend to get puffy and kind of tired looking.  My biggest focus with eye cream is to get the moisture in without clogging pores.  Along the top line of my lower orbital bone is where I am prone to the raised bumps produced by clogged pores. 

While I want the under eye area moisturized and I am working on delaying the advancement of fine lines, a lot of eye creams tend to cause issue with my problem area for clogged pores.  It doesn’t really help that that line is currently where my face masks press when I leave the house. So it is just a fun situation all around.

Oddly enough that line of clogged pores has been reduced as of late.  It is much less clogged.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not crediting the Glossybox eye boost cream with that.  I’ve been working with other products that have really done well at dealing with the ongoing issues. But the eye cream hasn’t undone their work.  This cream hasn’t added more blocked pores to the area.  And sometimes not adding to the problem is a big benefit.

the cream is thicker than I expected

I’ll be honest though I was a bit concerned when I first tried it out.  I thought it might add to the issues because of its texture.  While it is completely fragrance free (the only thing I smell when I sniff the tube is the plastic of the tube, likewise I smell my skin more than the cream when it is dispensed), it is somewhat thicker than I am used to eye creams being.

This made me suspicious.

I know, I was expecting the worst.

But it didn’t happen.  The cream absorbed really well and left the skin feeling a little plumper, making me look a little more bright eyed. Typically I use eye cream two times a day, morning and night.  While I use it under my eyes, you may notice in the picture that there are little white dots of cream waiting to be massaged into the skin placed in my lip area. 

Face dots of eye cream

This is a trick I learned from my grandmother. The skin of the upper lip where you tend to get more fine lines as you age has a similar skin texture to the under eye area.  So she always advocated using a little eye cream around the mouth to plump up those little lines as well. 

It is advice I have always followed and I really like the little bit of plumping I see to the skin there as well. I tend to put a little cream on my finder and then dot it on my face where it is needed, then rub it into the skin, in case you didn’t get that from the picture. What I have found with this cream is that I can do a quick application just before a video conference call. 

It really helps especially if I have been starting at the computer all morning typing before an afternoon call.  I just put a very tiny amount under the eyes, rub it in slightly and then dust off the shine with powder.  It tends to make me look a little bit more awake.  While it has a slight cooling effect to it, on days when I need a little extra kick for a meeting, I put it in the fridge for ten minutes, and then apply it.

As it is currently ragweed season where I live and puffy eyes and sniffles abound, especially in my house. I’ve been keeping the eye cream in the fridge and then in the afternoon before a meeting using both the cream and one of the stone rollers just under my eyes to de puff.  Because ragweed is too much for any eye cream to tackle alone. It has worked really well.

Over all I am rather fond of this eye cream.  I thought it would be too thick at first, but it proved me wrong.  I thought it might clog my pores and it did not.  I was skeptical of its depuffing abilities and it really did help with the depuffing. I can’t speak to the dark circles, but I really liked using this eye cream this month.  It makes me very eager to test out some of the other products in their newly released line.  And as the line was designed to be affordable, testing them out won’t break the bank. 

There is also an added bonus for all Glossy Box subscribers.  Glossies get a 20% discount on the Glossy Box Skincare line.  So this Eye Boost cream, which is $23 for the general public is only $18.   At the moment they have several different cleansers I am looking at and trying to figure out which I want to try first. I am currently oscillating between the Purifying Charcoal Cleanser and the Deep Cleansing Cream.  I strongly suspect I am going to end up with both.  But there are worse things in life than having too many cleansers. 

For those who aren’t Glossy Box subscribers the cost of the Glossy Box Skin Care line is slightly more expensive (20% more to be exact) but still a really good value and well worth the full price.  Or at least the eye cream is. I would certainly pay full price for it. After a month of use it feels like I haven’t used very much at all. 

I have only a thumb’s width of empty space at the top of the tube and about four and a half thumb’s worth of product left.  I know that is not a very scientific measurement, but the truth is you really need very little of the cream so it will last about four months. It will probably last a little longer once ragweed season ends. So good product, great value.

Especially for members.  If you aren’t a member and want to look into it, you can actually get your first box at a discount with code GLOSSYSPA16 from now until September 30th and if you are interested in what the September box looks like, you can use the link to read my September review of the Spa Edit box.

My Current Skin Care Line Up

I know I talk a lot about different products, but I thought you might find it interesting to see the full regime as it stands now.  First off, I ought to say that I have a staggered rotation system for skin care. I like to have an older product I’ve been using for a while roll into my trial for a new product so that I’m not changing out every item at the same time. 

For example I am currently testing three Timeless Skin products (gifted to me by Timeless Skin for testing and review purposes for which I am extremely grateful).  The Hyaluronic Acid Serum I have been using for two weeks now (Labor day started week three so I will be reviewing it on the 21st after 30 days of use), while the while the Squalane Oil from Timeless skin is just starting its second week of use and the HA Spray is on its first full week of use.

The same can also be said for my Purlisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Cleansing Milk.  I used it for a month but will use it a little bit longer since I just started with the HA spray. I’ll use the same cleanser while I figure out how everything reacts and then I’ll start a new cleanser trial.  I generally find that staggering new products keeps my skin from freaking out with the new so I get a more accurate opinion about how things work.

Now I do have one disclaimer, my skin care routine is slightly jumbled a bit because I am trying to get in several workouts  and don’t want to just sweat off my products, so I’ll try to put those in here as well.

current cleanser

In the mornings, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, I am trying to get in about twenty minutes of strength and flexibility training.  This is mostly with youtube videos, wii fit and yoga.  It is done in doors and because I have the tendency to talk myself out of it, I find it is easier to start with the workout before I’m fully awake.  So on those mornings I splash water on my face to rinse off the remnants of my night cream, towel off and after dressing, do my planned work out.

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After I turn on the coffee pot and cool down a bit, I start in on my morning skin care. I start by washing my face, currently with the Purlisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Cleansing milk. 


I then use a toner.  I just finished the Akar Balancing Toning Mist and am now trying the Pixi Skin Treats Clarity Tonic.  Typically with Pixi I tend to go for their exfoliating toners so this was a new one for me.  While early in my use thus far I have been liking it.


After toning I use a serum on my face, neck and decollete.  Currently, the serum I am trying out is the Timeless Hyaluronic Acid Serum.  And I did remember to take before pictures this time so I will have before and after photos from 30 days of use. 

I’ve actually noticed a positive change actually, but I will get into details with the full review.  At the moment I can say that I really like this serum and am turning into a pretty big fan of Hyaluronic Acid in skincare.

After I apply the serum, I brush my teeth while it takes it’s time settling in.  While this serum sinks in fast, I really like to give it a little extra time to settle in before I move on. You can probably see it in the background of the above photo but I am a big fan of the Aquafresh Extreme Clean toothpaste.  It has been my go-to for years.  I like the taste better than I like the regular aqua fresh.  Although sometimes the foaming can be a bit much.  But it is a good toothpaste.


Then once I have wiped up all of the toothpaste fall out, I apply my eye cream.  Currently I am using the Glossy box Skin Care Eye Boost Cream (I’ve almost finished my month of use so a review will be coming soon).  With eye cream I not only use it around my eyes, but on the fine lines around my lips. 

The same formulation that helps eye cream work on the delicate tissue around the eyes also helps it on the fine lines around the lips. It was one of my grandmother’s favorite tricks and one I use increasingly as I get older.  In its own way that skin is just as delicate as the eyes and a little extra help in fighting those lines doesn’t hurt.

Squalane Oil

After the eye cream I use the oil.  At the moment I am using the Timeless 100% Squalane oil.  Oddly enough, I am finding that I can use it both morning and night unlike many other oils which I have only been able to use at night.  I think it’s because squalane’s main purpose is to simply lock in moisture and it really is just one type of oil (it’s also a really affordable oil as these things go). I’ve just started using it so I’ll have to see how it works moving forward.  Right now I am really enjoying it.  I use three drops and apply it to my skin and then follow with my moisturizer. I like applying the oil first rather than blending it in with the moisturizer. No real reason, it is just what I prefer.


The moisturizer I am currently using is the Dior Dream Skin Capture Totale. It was sent to me by Influenster and comes in a refillable container.  I can already tell you I am going to want to get a refill.

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At the moment it is running about even in my moisturizer preferences with the Peter Thomas Roth Hungarian Thermal Water Mineral Rich Moisturizer and the Volition Celery Green Cream. 

Those three may be my top three moisturizers of 2020 at this point.  Still the year is not over.


Speaking of Volition, after I apply the moisturizer I top it off with my Volition Prismatic Luminizing shield with SPF 50. I keep trying other sunscreens and I keep going back to this one.

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You will notice there is a second sunscreen in the picture however.  This is the Polaar Fluide Solaire also with SPF 50. While it is a good sunscreen, I don’t like it on my face.  It feels just a little too heavy.  It is perfect for my neck and upper chest where v-neck t-shirts expose the skin and I have really been enjoying using it there to give my skin some extra protection. 

lip masks, the maple day cream is in the tube and the night mask is in the jar.

I then add my Bite Beauty Agave Lip mask in the scent Maple to my lips.  It really does smell like maple syrup.  And it tasks kind of like it too.  I generally find that not only does it keep my lips wonderfully soft but the scent makes me feel like I’ve already indulged in some delectable treat and thus makes it less likely that I will feel like snacking.  I sort of feel Like I’ve already snacked.

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And skin care done I sit at my desk and get a few hours of work done.  I don’t put makeup on at this point as my meetings tend to be in the afternoon and I still have my daily walk to get through.  All my skin care has a couple of hours to soak in though. 

Then I take my walk.  Before I leave the house I spray myself all over with a spray sunblock.  I’m partial to one from Neutrogena. Even with the sunblock underneath, I like to be extra careful, especially after my bad burn earlier in the spring.

In general I sweat profusely during my walks.  Which is fine.  I like to think of the seat as encouraging my weight loss.  However I am a mess when I return.  While I often employ the Busy Beauty Showerless wipes to get me through until I can take my evening shower, and have various ways of dealing with my hair, my face is a different matter. 

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If I don’t wash my face after my walk I am just going to feel gross the rest of the day.  But I don’t want to strip my skin.  So I tend to use a gentle cleanser that will just wash away the sweat (and sometimes pollen) residue from my walk in the park/walking trail. 

Post work out cleanser

The cleanser I have consistently used for a while has been the Olay Cleanse Gentle Foaming Cleanser.  It is an excellent oil free, no frills cleanser that just makes my skin feel less gunky after a good sweat. 

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To be honest I have been using this as my post workout cleanser since I started my weight loss journey.  I have lost track of how many times I have used up and replaced this bottle. It is also the cleanser I grab when another cleanser is giving me problems because I know it is effective and reliable. So I use it after my walks.

post workout serum

Something new I am trying, because it came to me in an IPSY box, is the 111Skin Cryo ATP Sports Booster.  It is a serum you are supposed to use after a workout.  So because I wanted to see how it worked, I have started adding it to my skin after my quick wash with the Olay.  Previously I just did the quick wash and then moved into my makeup.

After the 111Skin has had a few minutes to settle in, I apply my makeup for the day.  While I usually end with a setting spray, the HA Spray with Matrixyl 3000 sent to me by Timeless claims to be able to be used as a setting spray as well as being skin care, so this week I started using it to set my makeup.  There will be more on that later this week.  But I will tell you now that is it wonderfully refreshing and smells like cucumbers.

skin care based setting spray

And then I go about my day.

At the end of the day I use a cleansing balm or oil to remove my makeup and then I use a cleanser like the Purlisse.  I just finished the Province Apothecary Moisturizing Cleansing oil and tonight I will start using the Kahina Giving Beauty Oil Cleanser.  It too came in a Petit Vour Box and I am looking forward to testing it out. 

upcoming cleansing oil/makeup remover

Often times I will remove my makeup after dinner and then use a mask of some sort while reading or watching television or you tube.  With my mask I will apply the Bite Beauty Agave Nighttime lip therapy mask to my lips.  It is more intense than the maple one I use in the mornings, although with less of a scent. 

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It also keeps me from snacking while watching television.  I know it is technically supposed to be left on over night, and sometimes I will re apply it just before I lay down but I find when I am watching movies or television with my babydoll in the evenings I am tempted to snack.  This really keeps me from snacking, even after the face mask is removed.

Eventually, I will migrate to the bedroom.  I do my night time skin care before I start to read in bed.  Once or twice a week I will use an exfoliator.  At the moment I am using the Avant Gentle Rose Beautifying Face Exfoliant.  It is an extremely gentle physical exfoliate but I don’t like to use them too often lest it damage the skin. 


After the exfoliate is rinsed off (on the nights I use it) I go back in with my toner, followed by serum, teeth brushing, eye cream, oil and moisturizer. Depending on the moisturizer I am using I will either use the same one I use during the day or a night cream.  The Dior is good for both day and night, but on a few days where I have been outside a bit longer, I replace my moisturizer with a night cream.  Currently I am trying out the Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Sleeping mask.  I only use it a couple of times a week.

Then I read in bed for an hour or two and go to sleep.

night cream

I know, that’s a lot of different steps to my skin care.  Personally, I enjoy the ritual of it and I really like taking the time to work on my skin.  At the moment, my skin is doing really well.  Most of my acne has faded. I still have a few clogged pores where my mask presses into my face, but really that is a combination of mask and sweat.  Some combination of elements in the last week has really been doing my skin well. 

This is another reason I like rotating products.  I can check in with my skin and see what I was using when things start to get better and I can monitor it as I stop using certain products and see where things change.  I helps me to figure out what is actually working and what is not.  It is also why I am not opposed to taking extra time in my routine.  To be honest, written out it looks like it takes a lot longer than it actually does.  It only really takes me about twenty minutes in the morning and then another twenty at night (not counting the mask) so it isn’t really as onerous as it looks on paper.

But there you have it.  Even though some of the products rotate out, the sequence and system remains more or less the same.  There are always changes based on products though.  Sometimes the oil I’m testing is one I only want to wear at night and so I skip it in the morning.  Sometimes I will try two different serums, one at night and one in the day because one reacts poorly to the sun. Sometimes my skin needs more or less exfoliation.  But in general, this is my daily skin care regime.

So, Is Algenist a Genius? Testing two products from their Genius line

The Algenist Ultimate Anti Aging Eye Cream and Liquid Collagen lip from the Genius line

Recently I ended up with two Algenist products in my testing line up, both from different sources, but both part of the Algernist Genius line.  The first was the Algenist Genius Ultimate Anti-aging eye cream (retail $74, although I got it on sale.).  The reason I ended up purchasing it was a friendly recommendation given to me by a stranger when I was out shopping for eye cream. I was having trouble deciding on a product and the helpful stranger suggested this one.  I took the recommendation and after a trip to the cashier I took it home.

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The second product came to me via Scentbird and no, it isn’t a perfume.  Scentbird also offers various skincare and makeup items that you can add to your queue in lieu of a perfume that month.  In March, I decided to forgo my monthly perfume trial and try the option and from their line up I chose the Algenist Genius Liquid Collagen lip to try out. It looked interesting and we all know I am totally down for anything designed to make my lipstick look better. So I received this product instead of perfume from Scentbird this month. I didn’t review the Scentbird subscription box right away as I wanted to have time to try the products.

So with two separate products from the same line ready for testing, I decided I needed to find out what made them genius.

Or at least why they thought of themselves as such.

So to the product page my darlings!

As far as I can tell it is called the genius line because it is born from biotechnology using super fantastic algae and is safe and clean, hypoallergenic and formulated for all skin types. It is also free of a whole bunch of not so good for you things including coal tar, mineral oil and petroleums.  There is actually a long list of what they don’t use, which made me quite happy to see. As far as I can tell though those guidelines apply to all of their products and not just the genius line.

So we look at the products.  Unfortunately, all things are not equal.  I liked the eye cream and did not like the lip treatment.  Let’s go with the best first though and start with the eye cream.

According to its product page, the Algenist Ultimate Anti-Aging Eye cream…

This vegan eye cream delivers unparalleled benefits through a combination of naturally sourced and sustainably produced Alguronic Acid and Microalgae Oil. Alguronic Acid helps increase skin’s smoothness, and Microalgae Oil works to replenish the eye contour moisture while improving the skin’s luminosity. The formula also includes a plant-based collagen and a Persian silk tree extract to visibly firm and lift the upper eyelid, nourish and smooth skin around the delicate eye area. 

I have to say, I am a big fan of this eye cream. It is a plain, white cream with almost no scent other then ‘I’m a cream’ scent. It is thicker than I expected and I worried that it might clog my pores as some of the thicker eye creams have been known to do.  However, it did not.  I’ve been using this product for a month now and I have had no problems with clogged pores.  The eye cream does make the skin feel super soft and hydrated.  I think this is partially because of the shea butter included rather high up on the ingredients list. I like that it is thick enough that I can put it on my eyelids as directed without worrying about it traveling down and stinging my eyes. 

There was no eye stinging with this product. 

Where this product really shines though, is during allergy season.  As the pollen count rises, the puffiness of my under eyes increases.  The trees began their annual pollen parade shortly before I started using this eye cream and they were a bit on the puffy side when I started.  I noticed a reduction in the puffiness after a few days of use even though the pollen count was steadily on the rise.

My only issue with this product is that it is in a small jar and it is a thick cream.  I know I also like that it is a thick cream, but here’s the deal. It is thick enough that if you rub your finger across the top to collect some product to use, you get only a little on your finger as it just presses down. You have to sort of scoop a little bit up with your nail.in order to use it. Personally I don’t like sticking my fingers into face creams for fear of accidentally contaminating the entire thing.

I ended up putting one of the scoops from an old mask to use with this product as I was getting product under my nails with it and it was going to waste.  This is not a product I want to waste.  Also it is a small jar and my little plastic scoop was a little too big for it so I had to be careful not to scoop out too much.  A tiny little scoop/spoon included with this product would make it just about perfect.

On the other hand, the Liquid Collagen lip is far from perfect. First, let’s see what it is supposed to do.


A vegan lip treatment to help deliver fuller, smoother-looking lips in 10 days*. This unique dual phase lip treatment suspends botanical lip enhancers and hundreds of beads of Microalgae Oil in collagen water. The unique formula visibly smooth lips and improve lip definition for a more youthful appearance. Formulated with plant collagen, and Algenist’s naturally sourced and sustainably produced Alguronic Acid. Apply with soothing and cooling ceramic tip applicator.


Okay, the packaging is nice and really well thought out.  The plastic applicator is shaped perfectly and when you twist the top to dispense the product, the absolute perfect amount of product comes out.  Seriously it is just enough to coat the lips and no more. The packaging is perfectly well thought out.

And it looks pretty.

It is comprised of golden drops of oil suspended in a gel.  You hold it up to the light and it almost glows.

But as we all know, looks aren’t everything.

So I applied the product to my lips.  It has no scent and it glides on like a lip gloss. As it was on my lips, I did taste the product. It is a very bizarre taste.  I am going to describe this to the best of my ability, but I am not sure how good that is.  So, the taste. 

Okay imagine you go to the dentist and have a lot of Novocain as they are working on your mouth.  They finish, wipe off your lips and send you home.  Eventually the drugs wear off and you can take out the pads they shoved in your mouth to make you look like a chipmunk (and not bite your cheek without realizing it). Now think of the first time you lick your lips after that. You know that post Novocain taste your lips have? The slight non-taste that is still a taste?

That’s what this tastes like.

And yes I had to think about that for a while and it is still the best description I could come up with. Now you know why I don’t write poetry.

Okay so moving past the taste.  At first, my lips just felt wet.  After a couple of minutes it started to absorb and my lips felt warm. Really warm. Not run for the wash cloth warm, more like you put a few too many sliced jalapenos in your sandwich warm.

And yes, I put jalapenos in my grilled cheese. They are yummy.

The warmth died down faster than jalapeno juice though, so I was relieved.  Also about the time my lips stopped feeling hot, when I touched them they felt dry to the touch even though I still thought they were wet. I will say they looked a little smoother and I was able to easily apply lipstick over them.  I used a lipstick that was almost at the end of its life in case it contaminated it, but I still applied lipstick over it with no problems.  In fact it looked really good.

I know you’re thinking, Mimsy, you said you didn’t like it, what’s the deal?

Okay here’s the deal.  The one time use was fine.  It worked exactly as it was supposed to. But it is a product that is supposed to work over time.  According to the application directions you are supposed to apply it once in the am and once in the pm and you should see results in ten days. That is the recommended usage.

So I used as directed. 

I applied it both am and pm. The heat I felt that first day did not occur with repeat applications. I don’t know if my lips adjusted or what, but there was no further heat.  There was chapping.  By day three the corners of my lips were red and raw and I had to discontinue use.  If I realized it was the lip product causing the chapping I would have discontinued use earlier.  I thought it was just the wind so I applied more Chapstick.

It was not the wind and I apologize for blaming it.  I also apologize for telling the Chapstick it was not doing its job.  It was, I was just torpedoing it without realizing it. Please don’t hold it against me dear Chapstick, as I will need you in both the upcoming summer sun and the cold winter to follow. I’m sorry I was so rude.

So there you have it. It’s a Genius family where one child seems to have sucked all the brains out of the other one. The liquid collagen is still pretty and perhaps I had some sort of reaction to one of the ingredients (a case I will be investigating), and someone else would have better luck with it than me. I can however say, it is definitely not a repurchase for me. I might try using it again on a one time basis if I need to look good going out (although heaven only knows when I will next leave my house). But I will not use it routinely and I won’t repurchase. 

The Ultimate Anti-aging eye cream however is fantastic and definitely something I will be repurchasing. For now I am less than halfway through the jar and still have at least one other eye cream in the line up to test. But it still goes on the list.

I also am going to sit down with as complete an ingredients list as I can to see if I just had an allergic reaction and if I did, what I had the reaction to. I find this very important as I saw many crossovers from the eye cream and lip treatment when I looked through them. I find this important generally because I like to know if I am allergic to something, but also because I had so much success with the eye cream that I want to try out other cream products in this line to see if they are comparable. To be honest, after I make my comparison ingredients list, this may be a case where I get samples of other products in the line to try before committing to a full sized version, just in case. every product line has some flaws and I’m hoping that for me the lip treatment was it. So not only will I be repurchasing the eye cream but I will more than likely be trying out more products from the Genius line and hoping it is a family of virtuosos, with just one errant child.


Reviewing the Blue Lotus Line

The Blue Lotus Line from Pur-lisse (well most of it anyway)

Around the time the weather finally decided that summer was more than likely over (it seemed very lothe to commit to such a sentiment this year) and it would start shifting between warmer and cooler temperatures, more or less indiscriminately, I tried the Ble Lotus Balancing moisturizer from Pur-lisse. The moisturizer really impressed me with the way it worked during those transitional temperatures and I wanted to give it a try when the fluctuations were a little less severe.

Since I already reviewed the moisturizer I was just going to test it on my own and then add my findings to a second chances posting at a later date. Sometimes I find that first impressions aren’t always accurate and I like to give products a second chance before I make my final decision on them. However I decided that if I was going to be retesting the moisturizer I might as well look at the other products in the Blue Lotus line.

Deciding this I added the Blue Lotus Seed Mud mask and exfoliator, the Balancing Serum and the Blue Lotus 4 in 1 Eye-Adore serum to my trial, thus making it more of a test of the line rather than just a test of the moisturizer. While they are all part of a Korean multi-step skin care program, I will admit, I have never officially tried the ten step skin care regime.

My personal regime (currently) has several steps in it and I tend to vary them based on what I actually feel I need at the moment. I might try something more directly in line with the ten steps at a later date, especially as I keep finding really nice products that are more or less designed to fit into that system. The working theory is that if I like the products I might like the system. But that is something for another time.

As I was trying the line, I went with deluxe sample sizes for these products rather than purchasing the full sized versions. I figure if I liked the products, I could always pick up the full sized versions later. This being said, while I used the products for two weeks, I didn’t do the weigh in at the beginning to see if I could plan out how long they would last.

Now on to the products.

I will start with the Blue Lotus Seed Mud Mask and Exfoliator (full size retails for $48). Mostly I am starting with this because it comes earlier in my routine than the others. The claims for this product according to the website:

Just a thin layer is needed.

Improve texture and tightness of your skin in just 10 minutes! Blue Lotus extract is a powerful antioxidant known for it’s anti-inflammatory benefits. White Clay tightens skin & purifies pores, Bamboo improves skin texture, Ginger detoxifies, Mushroom extract helps to brightening skin tone, White Tea soothes skin, amd Rice Bran Water improves skin texture.

Now that I knew what to expect I tried it on. I applied a thin layer to the skin, massaging it a little to get the exfoliating benefits. The mask itself has very little scent, it just smells clean if that makes any sense. In fact none of these products has much of a scent to them. Clean and like cream are all of the scent descriptions I have for any of the products in this line. While the mask felt a little bumpy when applied to the skin so that I knew it wasn’t just a straightforward mud mask, the exfoliation granules (which I’m guessing are the seeds) was very gentle. So gentle in fact I at first doubted they would do much. But After massaging, I let the layer sit on the skin for the recommended ten minutes.

As it sat the product made my skin feel cool, but not tingly. This is something I tend to feel with almost all clay based masks so I was sort of expecting it. At the end of ten minutes, the mask felt like it tightened as well as dried, but not overly so. I returned to the bathroom, and more importantly the sink, to wash it off. Given that it had clay in it, I suspected I would have to use a brush to loosen it before it would be removed as it did dry to a thin but solid layer over my skin. Such things were not needed as a simple splash of water, rehydrated it enough to simply loosen and wash off. I have never had a clay based mask wash off so easily before.

For a moment I thought I did something wrong.

And yes I reread the back of the bottle, I didn’t do anything wrong as it turns out. It just washes off easily. I dried my face and looked at my skin. It was soft and smooth, but not overly dried. As gentle as the exfoliant was in this product, I could really feel the difference after using it.

Feeling pleased with this step, I moved on to the Brightening serum (full sized retails for $65). According to the website:

Blue Lotus extract is a powerhouse antioxidant with anti-inflammatory benefits known to combat against free radical damage. Lupine Peptides promote a luminous complexion. Vitamin C & Alpha Arbutin brightens & evens skin tone. Neem and Prune extracts fades away hyper~pigmentation & sun damage. Avocado Oil & natural Squalene nurtures sensitive skin.

Okay I’ll admit, while I really like all of the other ingredients, I had to look up Neem. Apparently Neem extract is made from Neem leaves (I know you are in awe of my investigative skills, no?). Neem is also another term for Indian Lilac. That at least I had heard of. When looking further I found the plant is used medicinally to treat all sorts of disorders from stomach ulcers to leprosy. It can also be used to soften skin, which is I’m guessing the effect here.

Mostly because I don’t have leprosy.

And my skin felt soft.

Moving on, the serum surprised me when I put some in my hand as I expected it to be like most serums with a somewhat loose almost gel like consistency. This is white and has a cream like consistency. In fact i thought I picked up the cream by mistake and reread the bottle to be certain. Nope, it was the serum.

It applied well and only a little dab (about pea sized) was needed for the face and neck (I am still looking for the perfect neck cream but for now I am just trying to remember to apply products down the neck. With each few pounds lost, my neck skin sags and then firms back up so I like to encourage it to firm up quickly, things no one tells you about weight loss right?) If you don’t extend your serum down the neck then just use a little less.

I found the serum absorbed well and was the perfect post mask treatment for my skin. I know I shouldn’t find it surprising that two products from the same line work well together, but they do. It was soothing and smooth and as I continued to use the product over the course of my trial I did notice a bit of brightening to the skin. My skin tends to react really well to Vitamin C so I’m guessing that was part of it.

While I couldn’t find the full sized version listed, the travel sized contains a lot of product and will last quite a while.

Next in line was the Blue Lotus 4 in 1 Eye Adore serum. I chose this because I was looking for a really good eye cream and have yet to find one I am truly satisfied with. Like I mentioned above, I am testing the travel sized or deluxe sample sized version of these products. when I wwent to look up this cream on the main site, I found the full sized version missing. The travel size is listed however (retail $33) and the only information listed on the page is ‘ Transform your under eye for a smoother look‘. There are reviews posted, but not much else listed for the product. I’m not entirely certain why, but I will keep looking, mainly because I really liked this product.

One of the issues I have with a lot of eye creams is that they tend to clog my pores and give me a small row of sub-surface acne around the eye area. As I’m already fighting time to slow down the appearance of wrinkles I don’t need to add fighting acne to the list of concerns for that delicate skin. Maybe because it is a serum instead of an eye cream it did not cause any problems for me. It does have a cream like consistency to it rather than a serum one though. Like the other products in this line, it has virtually no scent to it and only a small amount of the product is needed. I will certainly be using up ever drop of this serum and more than any other in this line, I will be repurchasing it. Even if I can’t find a full sized version, I am okay with the travel size. It has a thin nozzle that dispenses a small amount of product and keeps the rest secure from the air. while I’d like to find a full sized, mostly to cut down on packaging waste, it is good enough I will cut down waste elsewhere to justify the travel size.

Finally we return to where we started, with the Blue Lotus Balancing Moisturizer (retail $45). Like the rest of the line it has a clean almost non existent scent and very little of the product is actually needed. To use in the day time, I use just a little bit less and to use at night, I used just a little bit more, but the difference was really the difference between an early snow pea and a full sized garden one. On the website the product claims:

Blue Lotus extract is a powerhouse antioxidant with anti-inflammatory benefits known to combat against free radical damage.White Tea offers anti-bacterial and skin soothing abilities. Vitamin E prevents premature aging and improves skin texture. French Marine Plants help retain moisture and promote skin radiance.

Over all not that different from the rest of the line in claims really. While I have no way of testing the protection against free radicals, I can say that my skin felt smooth and hydrated through out the trial and at no point felt greasy. I had no break outs from these products and while I don’t have a big sensitivity to scent, I appreciate that no scent was actually added to the products and I think that a person who is sensitive to added scents would find this relatively easy to use.

I am pleased with how the moisturizer performed when the temperatures aren’t yo-yoing all over the place. While the Blue Lotus Balancing Moisturizer was at the top of my list for transition moths, it has now joined my top five moisturizers and it is one I will repurchase. I also found that I really liked the rest of the line as well. The brightening serum makes the top five list as well, while the eye serum, despite my difficulty in locating a full sized version actually is at the top of my eye products list. The mud mask and exfoliator is also in my top fives. During this trial I used it twice a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays and I will continue doing so until this product is gone. It is a great mask and an excellent, but gentle exfoliator.

Over all I found myself really impressed with this product line and while some of the products do lean on the more expensive side, the cost is not outrageously expensive and is a very good value for the money. while I tested travel sized versions rather than the full sized ones, very little product is actually needed from each of them. At the end of the trial and two weeks of continuous use, I still have plenty of product left.I think the full sized versions would last long enough to justify their price. Way to go Purlisse.

While I did purchase these products on my own, I do have some affiliate codes you can use to access posted below. I do receive a small compensation if you use the codes towards purchasing, but even if you don’t use the codes, I’d recommend checking them out as the products are really good. I think the Milk sale posted below where you get a free Blue Lotus Product with purchase runs through January 11th.

Save on the original pur~lisse collection, check out our last chance sale at purlisse.com

Get Free Shipping on purchases of $50 or more ($75 in Canada) at purlisse.com

Milk Day 2020

QMS Medicosmetics Review

Both of my QMS Medicosmetics products came to me via Boxy Charm, albeit in two separate months.  The Intensive Eye Care Day and Night Cream (retail $140) came in November and the Lip Line Corrector Lip Serum (retail $200) came in the December BoxyCharm. Because I knew the lip serum was coming, I put the eye cream to the side until it arrived so I could test both of them at the same time.

Prior to their arrival I had never tried anything from the brand. It is apparently a British Brand that is branching out into the US Market from what I’ve gathered.

I have to say that given the price point of the products, the packaging wasn’t what I expected. Both come in plastic containers.  While the eye cream is in a pretty blue color with a silver lid and feels quite sturdy, the lip serum container feels a little thin. Admittedly that may simply be the top dispenser.  It is a twist up dispenser that you pump the serum from. 

While I like that it keeps the product away from the air, don’t actually like the pump.  There is no adjusting the pump to dispense smaller amounts of product.  You can’t pump it halfway down, it is one pump and that is it.  For me this was a problem as I only need about half of the product that came out of the pump each time I used it. I ended up using the excess serum on my neck but I still felt as though I was wasting it by dispensing more than I needed.

But as we all know, packaging is one thing, product is another. Since I’ve already started with the lip line corrector, I’ll continue and then move on to the eye cream. So on the QMS website the product is described as:

Formulated exclusively for the upper lip area, Lip Line Corrector targets fine line and wrinkles. This high-performance lightweight serum is specifically designed to hydrate and plump lips for a smoother, youthful appearance.

I will say that the serum is very light weight.  It is a very liquid formula and it takes a while to absorb into the skin.  I found myself adjusting my skin care routine to apply it as early as possible to give it time to absorb before moving on. Truth be told in the three weeks I used the product, I didn’t see any real difference in the lip area. 

I will however say that I did see significant improvement on the skin of my neck and décolletage where I applied the excess serum. There it smoothed and plumped skin and I saw a noticeable difference. Which I have to say that as I only put it on my neck because the pump dispensed too much serum for my lip and I didn’t want to just wash it down the drain, I find darkly humorous.

While I will continue to use this on my neck and upper chest, I probably won’t use it on my lip any more.  I have not tried a product specifically designed for my lip area before, but prior to this I used eye cream on my lip area and that has worked much better. So I think moving forward I will not be purchasing a separate lip serum, but returning to use what I know works.  I would be up for trying a different brand should one come my way but once this product is gone I will not be repurchasing it.

The eye cream was an interesting product. According to the website:

With its multi-action formulation featuring natural firming extracts and intensely moisturizing ingredients, Intensive Eye Care provides targeted treatment to the delicate skin of the eye zone. Its rich, nurturing texture is both gentle and highly effective in helping to reduce fine lines, dark lines and puffiness.

It came in a regular jar with no pump and where the lip serum was thin and fluid, the eye cream was thick, very thick.  A very little dab was all that was needed to cover my under eye and the fine lines in the ‘crows foot’ area. Even with using very little product, this cream needed a bit of massaging to get it to absorb into the skin. Its thick nature made it want to sit on top of the skin. It has a very old fashioned cold cream sort of texture (and scent actually).

I’m not certain if it is the scent or the texture of the cream, but I could see it more as a night cream than a day cream. Unfortunately for me, it made my skin break out so I had to discontinue use. I ended up with a sort of crescent shaped section of skin around the orbital bone breaking out in a very distinct row of pimples.  As it was in exactly the spot where I put the cream, I figured it was the culprit.  The suspicion was confirmed when I stopped using it and the break outs went away.

It did actually work well on the fine lines around my eyes before it broke me out and it was excellent at reducing puffiness which is among its claims. The fact that it was actually an effective product made the break outs more annoying. I don’t know if it was clogged pores or an allergy, but unfortunately this is not the eye cream for me.

Unfortunately for me neither QMS products will be making it into my must have’s list. Perhaps because of the price point, I expected more. As I have used many less expensive products that worked much better, I was quite disappointed. The lip line corrector makes a wonderful serum for the neck and chest, but did nothing for the fine lines around my lips and the eye cream gave me two lines of crescent shaped breakouts. Clearly, this is not the brand for me.