The Skincare Line Up: April 1st, 2022

Ah yes my darlings, another week of skincare down. And changes are a foot. Several products are on the verge of being empty and will soon be replaced. First we look at my skin as it is the ultimate response to how products are working. Personally I think my skin is looking quite nice this week. I have a few bumps around my lower orbital bone, but I think that a lot of that is more to do with where my face mask presses’ than any skincare products.

my bare skin this week

And this afternoon i will be using my Bl’eau Mask which will bring up the clogs and since I won’t be wearing makeup or facemasks this weekend then my skin will have time to clear out the issues before next week starts up. Other than that, I have no real skin issues this week. Which is always nice to say. we are on the verge of seasonal changing though so in the coming weeks there may be a bit of finding my footing as the temperatures rise. A lot of that will depend on if we have a slow spring that rolls gently into the summer or if the Summer sun shows up early and clobbers spring into submission. Last year we had a long cold spring and then almost no autumn to speak of. Si I guess we will see what we get this year. But weather (and the future) aside, let’s see how this week’s products performed. For many of them, this is tha last time in the Line up this go round although some will be returning.

The Daytime Line Up

Cleanser: Time Revolution Artemisia Pack Foam Cleanser from Missha

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: The Nue Co’s The Pill

Toner: Pixi by Petra Glow Tonic

Eye Cream: MZ Skin Sooth and Smooth eye cream

Moisturizer: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

All of these products were in use last week (and several week’s prior. Next week will see many of them go away. The Missha Cleanser is almost used up. I think the fact that I used it as a mask as well as a cleanser used up the tube far faster than anticipated. I will definitely order this again and I will use it as a cleanser. when i use it as a mask it won’t be as a traditional face mask but as a cleanser I let sit to sooth the skin. I am actually ordering a new tube soon (they have a massive sale right now 20% off with code HELLO20) just so that I can have it on hand for the summer. That Artemisia is fantastic at soothing sun irritation (as well as other irritations) and I want it on hand.

The 111Skin essence has been great and I have loved not only how it increased the efficacy of the other products I was using but also the high end spa scent it brought to my routine. It was nice and I would certainly use it again. However I think there is only enough product to get through the weekend. Soon a new essence will join the line up. I have enjoyed the 111Skin Essence though.

The Nue Co’s The Pill is one of the few products staying. It is nice. It isn’t my favorite serum. I haven’t noticed anything that makes me think Wow when I use it. I think part of that is because it is an everything serum. There is not one targeted thing that I can see it doing. I’ll keep using it because it is nice, but i am still trying to figure out how i feel about it. The Vitamin C powder from the Nue co is another story, but I’ll get to that in the night time routine.

The Pixi toner is one I like. I’ve used it before and will no doubt use it again. The sample size I have is almost out. So I will use it this week. I plan to roll in the Alpha H Liquid Gold Toner which can only be used every other day so I will probably be using those together in the coming week. This should make the small amount of toner last out the week.

The MZ eye cream has been performing well. There is some reduction in fine lines. I would have expected to see a little more of a result but we are just approaching the thirty day mark (I think, I sort of lost track with the eye cream and will have to check) so it is still a little early to expect massive results. I will keep using it and hope the results increase. I think part of my expectations is that I know how much the cream costs ($159 per jar) and the cost leads me to expect really spectacular results. Especially since I have gotten spectacular results with a $30 eye cream. But as always where skincare is concerned, only time will tell.

And this leads us to the Embryolisse. I love this moisturizer. It has been fantastic. I thought that with the changing seasons it might end up being too heavy, but it hasn’t been. However we are approaching a moment. I have used it for thirty days. Now while I would love to keep using it, I have two other creams from the Lait creme line of Embryolisse so I need to use each of them in turn and compare them. However this moment also makes me happy. I tried the Embryolisse as a pre makeup base and now I am hooked. So while I would like to keep using it as a moisturizer, I am relocating it to my makeup bag and will be using it before applying my makeup while I test out the other moisturizers in this line. For me this is a win win. Having it in my makeup bag means I won’t forget it and can use it each day with my makeup and won’t have to run back to the bathroom to fetch it. So that’s kind of a bonus win for me. I will have the thirty day final post of this up next week with a lot more detail.

But that was my Day time line up. Only three of the products will be back next week. And new ones will be gin their testing. I can’t wait. But for now it is into the night…

The Nighttime Line Up

Cleanser: Time Revolution Artemisia Pack Foam Cleanser from Missha

Makeup Remover: Sunday Riley Vitamin C Makeup Removing Oil Paired with the Makeup Cloths from The Turkish Towel Company (currently on sale on the site)

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: The Nue Co Topical C

Facial Oil: Annmarie Anti-Aging Facial Oil and Byroe Fig Recovery oil

Exfoliating Pads: The Somme Institute Transport Exfoliating pads

Eye Cream: MZ Skin Sooth and Smooth eye cream

Moisturizer: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

Lips: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in berry

Okay I won’t go into the repeat products from the morning as they worked the same in the day as they did in the night. I needed a break from the Vike spray. It works well but that scent made me feel like i was in a cloud of vaporized mothballs and I needed a break. So I went to my skincare drawer knowing I have at least two cleansing balms in there. And at the back I found this Sunday Riley Vitamin C makeup remover oil. There is only a little bit left so i decided I would go ahead and just use it up. I used it this week and think that there might be enough left to finish it out this week. It was fantastic. I am a bit fan of the entire Vitamin C line, but I couldn’t find this on their website so i think it may have been dropped. It is a really good makeup remover and I didn’t have to scrub that much a the makeup just melted away.

I am finishing up the second week of trying out the Makeup removal cloths from the Turkish Towel company and am really liking them. I know this sounds strange, but the fact that they have the word Makeup embroidered on the front has kept them from going walk about. Everyone leaves them alone and they don’t get used for other things. which means I can easily rotate through them and not wonder where they got to.

The topical C powder is fantastic in my moisturizer. It just melts in and blends beautifully. I am a huge fan. I am however not a fan of the Somme institute. I think the pads didn’t even make it into today’s photo because I just stopped using them this week. The serum is fine but those cloth pads are a pain. So I stopped using them. I know it is wasteful but i just got so annoyed that i didn’t want to bother. I’ll do a short review detailing my experience and why I’m letting them go but i am passing them on to someone who will hopefully get better use out of them.

And finally there is Laniege. I love the lip mask and will use it until it is gone. Which will take a while as there is a lot of product in the container and you don’t use that much with each application. But it is fabulous. I think that when i do repurchase, i will go with the mini set so that I can switch out scents and flavors. But it is a great product.

And so that is my skincare line up for this week. Over all things went well. there were some misses, but nothing missed badly enough that it cause a break out, so i am calling that good.

The Skincare Lineup: March 25th, 2022

Good morning my darlings. It is time for the most fabulous post of the week. Or at least the one I have the most fun with. That’s right, it’s time to talk skincare. And today I have an added bit. I decided that I am going to add in a photo of my bare skin taken first thing on Friday morning so that you can see how my skin actually looks as well as seeing the products I am using and reading my thoughts about them

Feel free to zoom in as close as you care to look, I won’t judge. I did have a bit of a break out on my chin this week. But that was due to me spending an inordinate amount of time with a face mask and of using a clay mask to draw out the buried clogged pores. This week, there were some on my chin. The mask brought them up and I am now clearing them away. So first a picture of my skin and then, we are off to the skincare races. Or at least this week’s line up.

The Daytime Line Up

Cleanser: Time Revolution Artemisia Pack Foam Cleanser from Missha

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: The Nue Co’s The Pill

Toner: Pixi by Petra Glow Tonic

Eye Cream: MZ Skin Sooth and Smooth eye cream

Moisturizer: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

The Time Revolution Cleanser has been fantastic. I am reaching the end of the thirty days, and the end of the product as well. My full review of it will be up next week and I suspect I may be able to squeak through the week with the remainder of the cleanser, but certainly by the end of next week i will need to choose a new cleanser for the line up. I really enjoyed using this cleanser. It’s mask like texture was fantastic in letting me know exactly where I had cleansed and it rinsed off clean while leaving my skin refreshed. What more could you really want in a cleanser?

I also only have about a week more of the 111Skin Essence. It too has been fantastic. It not only helped the other products work more efficiently, but it’s scent lent my skincare routine a spa like feel. Great product, great high end scent. I would certainly use this essence again.

The Pill from Nue Co is interesting. It is creamier than I am used to serums being and slightly sticky. Since I put a moisturizer over it, I am not as worried about the stickiness as I would normally be. It is early days yet with this serum so I haven’t really seen any effects, but I am hopeful. I love the shape of the bottle and the pump as they seem really well thought out. It is an easy product to pick up and use even if you have wet hands. Hopefully steady use will produce effects.

I can already see some effects with the MZ Skin eye cream. It is a thick eye cream, but I haven’t had any issues with clogging pores. And I really like the way it absorbs without leaving a greasy film.

The real winner this week is the Embryolisse. Wow. It says Multi use on the label and this week I not only used it as my moisturizer but as a pre makeup base. It made such a huge difference. I was blown away. I have one more week for the full thirty day test of this moisturizer, and then I will be rolling in the next in the Lait-creme line to try out and compare with the first. My plan had been to use up this tube at night while starting to test the next one in the day time, but I think I will only do that for a few days before relocating the remainder of the tube to my makeup kit. Applying that extra hit of moisture and letting it soak in a few minutes before moving on with the rest of my makeup really made a difference. It was simply amazing and I am kind of sad that i didn’t try this multi-use function out prior to this. But I will be using it in the future. I will also be picking up a tube simply to keep with my makeup.

The Nighttime Line Up

Cleanser: Time Revolution Artemisia Pack Foam Cleanser from Missha

Makeup Remover: Vike Makeup Melt Paired with the Makeup Cloths from The Turkish Towel Company (currently on sale on the site)

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: The Nue Co Topical C

Facial Oil: Annmarie Anti-Aging Facial Oil

Exfoliating Pads: The Somme Institute Transport Exfoliating pads

Eye Cream: MZ Skin Sooth and Smooth eye cream

Moisturizer: Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

Lips: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in berry

As always some of these are repeats, so we will concentrate on the ones I didn’t use in the morning. I had planned to replace the Vike this week, but somehow never got around to it. I have a Huda Beauty cleansing Balm I want to try out so I will be bringing that out this coming week and setting the Vike to the side. It is a great product and so quick and easy to use. The issue is the scent. it is strong and I kind of need a break from it. But it is good.

I continued adding the Vitamin C powder from the Nue C to my moisturizer this week and I really enjoy it. I add it at night because in the day time Vitamin C can leave me a little sun sensitive. I really like having it in the routine though and I am happy I can add it, and add it in the amounts I want, when I choose to do so.

This week I rolled in the Annmarie Facial Oil to replace the Byroe to see how it worked and I loved it. It worked even better than the Byroe, plus it has that great Annmarie Skincare Herbal scent. I adore the skincare products from Annmarie skincare. They are just so fresh and clean. My all time favorite is their Aloe Herb Cleanser. it smells like Lemon Verbena and I always find myself wanting to pick up a bottle when spring arrives. It just seems like the perfect time for it. But alas, this tine bottle of oil is almost out. I have a couple of more days with it and then I will take out a new facial oil. this is one I will return to in a larger format at some point in the future. As I am working through a backlog of oils that i want to use up, it may take a while but this is one of the few oils that made my repurchase list.

I don’t think I will be repurchasing the Somme exfoliating pads. I do like toner and exfoliating pads and the liquid in this one is fine. It actually works well. The problem is with the pads themselves. They are a thin cotton material that because it is so saturated tend to stick together. Separating them often tears the pad and gets the serum everywhere. I often feel like I’ve exfoliated my hands more than I have my face. and it really is the material of the pads. Getting just one out of the container is difficult. I will keep using them as I like the serum, but I don’t think this is going to be a repeat purchase for me.

It was kind of the hiccup in my week of skin care. Otherwise everything went swimmingly. Next week there will be a new facial oil and new makeup remover. The cleanser and the essence may make it through the week, but I know the cleanser won’t make it beyond. Using it as a day and night time cleanser along with an occasional masking experience used up the tube fast. I don’t mind as it was a fantastic product to use, but I will soon need to find a replacement. As always I will be easing new products in one at a time instead of all at the same time. I find it the best way to keep my skin from freaking out over new products.

So that was me this week. I hope you had as much fun talking about skincare as I did.

The Skincare Line up: November 12th, 2021

Ah Friday. We have reached the end of the week and what is that? Is that the scent of skincare in the air? I believe it is. That’s right it is my favorite time of week where I get to indulge in my love of skin care and tell you all about the products I am using. So are you ready to see the list? Great. We’ll start with the day time.

The Daytime Lineup

Deodorant: Native Deodorant Cherry and Vanilla Macaroon

Cleanser: Elemis Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Moisturizer: Filorga Oxygen Glow Crème

The only truly new item on this list is the Elemis Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser. I know, I planned to try out a sample sized cleanser, but after last week’s cleansing disaster I went straight for a brand that I love and trust. while there may be a few Elemis products where I might think , that’s not my favorite scent, the scent is never off enough that I won’t use the product and at no time have i ever had any sort of reaction to any Elemis product. With One cleanser last week having a scent that I just couldn’t get past and another actually causing an allergic reaction, I’ll admit, I went the safe route.

I did justify it by thinking that some of my cleansers in the travel size could be designated for Thanksgiving travel as the Elemis Cleanser is a pump and I really don’t like traveling with pumps. No matter what I do, it somehow never ends well.

While I have used many Elemis products before, this is not a cleanser I was familiar with. I tend to go for the foaming cleansers (I actually love the Elemis Superfood Foaming Cleanser) but I have weakness for Lime Blossom. It is just a fantastic scent in general. It is lightly floral with just hint of lime zest. Thee was a lime tree in one of the backyards of a house we lived in (we moved a lot – military family) and I remember thinking that when it bloomed it was the most fabulous scent in the world.

So fabulous scent meets skincare brand I love, how could I resist? This is a cleansing milk so there is almost no foaming. It goes on as a thin cream (smelling fabulous) is massaged in and rinsed off. It was fantastically cleansing and it took off the last remnants of my makeup very well without leaving my face stripped. This week for my ‘double cleanse’ I relied upon my Makeup Eraser (currently 35% off sitewide) to remove my makeup and then washed my face. Even when I am not officially using two products for a true double cleanse, I like removing my makeup before cleansing my skin. It removes more product before the cleanser hit sand I like the thought of actually cleansing my skin instead of simply washing the makeup off.

Plus my toner pads come off cleaner when I do both so that I actually feel like my cleanser is really doing it’s job.

And my toner did work well this week as always. I don’t think I will manage to get through another week with this toner and will have to rotate a new one in for next week. Thus Murad Toner is one that I will repurchase though. My skin enjoyed it and I really felt it was worth using.

Everything else performed up to expectations and with the exception of the moisturizer will continue to chug along into next week. (some of the items I’ll break out down in the night time list as there are a lot of repeats.).

The Filorga Oxygen Glow Cream finished up this morning. If I’m honest, there was barely enough of a sample left to finish out this morning, but I used the last drop of it. I really enjoyed this moisturizer and will happily pick it up to use again. I am putting it on the list of products I would like to try out in the full sized versions. It is one that I will be picking up at some point for a lengthy trial. While two weeks isn’t long enough to see real results, in these two weeks it has been a really great light weight day cream. It didn’t provide enough moisturize to be used at night, but I don’t mind having separate moisturizers so that didn’t bother me. It is most definitely a day cream for me though. If you have really dry skin, it might not be enough for you. If you have oily skin, you may be able to use it as more than a day cream. It was lightweight and absorbed well. I look forward to arranging a longer test in the future.

And with the wrap up of the .day time moisturizer, shall we peer into the darkness of night?

The Nighttime Line up

Cleanser: Elemis Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Night Cream: One Kind Dream Cream Night Moisturizer

Lip Mask: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Berry

Okay, again the only newcomer is the Elemis Cleanser. It was fantastic and I am happy to keep it around. The 111Skin Essence is also a delightful addition to my line up. The scent brings a very spa like feel to my skincare ritual and it makes my skin feel as though it is opening up, The feeling is almost like feeling a cool breeze on your face when you weren’t really expecting it. As essences are designed to open your skin up to receive additional skincare I suppose that means it is doing it’s job. At the moment, I rather like it and am enjoying using it.

The Verso eye cream I love. I really can’t say enough good things about it. This may actually top the list of eye creams I have used this year. I know, for a while it looked like Perricone MD was going to take the prize this year, but it is now being edged out by Verso. Don’t get me wrong, Perricone MD is coming in as a close second. But the Verso just edges them out.

This week I used the One Kind Dream Cream again. I actually had two samples. they came in two separate subscription boxes actually. Upon first glance both tubes looked packed full of product, but once the seal was taken off there was barely a week’s worth of product in each tube. It was mostly air. So this was my second tube and my second week. Last night I finished the last of the night cream and will need a new product tonight.

From the to weeks I’ve used it, I think it is a good lightweight night cream. It has no real scent to it, which may be it’s strongest selling point. It isn’t a bad product. It just wasn’t really noteworthy. it worked well but I never found myself saying, wow this is a great night cream. Or looking in the mirror the next morning and thinking, that was a good product. Conversely I didn’t have any problems with it. It was just a middle of the road product. It provided moisture for the night.

I know, that’s it’s job. And perhaps if I did use it for longer then I might have seen some skin benefits that elevated it from just something that provided moisture. It is not a terribly expensive night cream and even though it wasn’t a spectacular product, I might go ahead and pick up a full size to try out and see if it is better. It is a $38 moisturizer making it the same price as the Olay Moisture Rich Moisturizer (usually $38 it is currently on sale for $28.99). If asked to choose between the two I would go in for the Olay every time. Even though the Olay isn’t a night cream, it provides just as much moisture as the night cream and to be honest when using that sample for two weeks I did wake up thinking, wow, my skin looks nice this morning. I’d still like to give the One Kind a try, but a full size is rather low on the list of purchase items. And before bed, the empty tube will be replaces with something new. I have no idea what that is yet, but I’ll find out before bed time.

As for now, this is the end of the skin care line up for this week. I know, with everything behaving properly it isn’t as dramatic. But quite honestly, sometimes, you don’t really want dramatic in your skin care. well dramatically reducing fine lines is nice. Perhaps I mean trauma rather than drama. After the itching eyelids from last week’s cleanser, I’m happy with the nice and easy week my skincare line up gave me this week.

Alyaka Beauty Advent Calendar Luxe 2020

The Skincare Lineup: November 5th, 2021

Ah November has arrived and with it a drasti temperature drop. This is the time of year where my moisturizers change over as my skin freaks out over the dry air pumping through the ventilation system. This week, the temps dropped ten degrees overnight twice taking us from the afternoon temps of mid sixties down to the low forties. It should be in the forties at this time of year. It was just so shocking to the system to have it all plunge down in one fell swoop.

Well, technically two fell swoops.

Oddly enough it wasn’t my moisturizers that gave me trouble this week. But let’s get into the skin care and we’ll se what we see.

The Daytime Lineup

Deodorant: Native Deodorant Cherry and Vanilla Macaroon

Cleanser: Neogen Dermalogy Foaming Cleanser

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Moisturizer: Filorga Oxygen Glow Crème

Okay, We have all heard the phrase the squeaky wheel gets the grease? Well this week the one change in the line up was the cleanser and it was definitely the squeaky wheel in my routine. To sum up the rest of the line up, everything worked well. I enjoyed all of the other products. And my skin likes them.

The Neogen cleanse is another story. It comes out as a white cream. You put it on your face, add water and there is a minor foaming that sort of occurs as the cream dissolves. It cleans the skin fairly well. I tried to use to to wash makeup off later in the day and it wasn’t very good with mascara or dark lipstick, but it did fairly well with face products.

The thing is, I can’t take the smell. It smells like lemon scented toilet bowl cleaner. Not an industrial one, but more like the one with the gooseneck and the scrubbing bubbles on it. It is the not quite bleach background note that is covered up with faux lemon scent. I tried using it, I really did. At first I tried rolling in a different cleanser at night to limit the use of this cleanser to once a day. But it didn’t help. I have a friend who loves the brand and she just finished a cleanser. While I have enjoyed other products from the brand (and am currently enjoying their peeling mask) I cannot take this cleanser. So while I have only used it a few times, I am passing it on to someone else who will hopefully love it. I just can’t get past the scent of it to use t long enough to find out if my skin likes it. In general I like the brand, but this was just not a win for me. And as Cleanser is one of the most important elements of my routine, it is best if I just let this one go.

The Nighttime Line up

Cleanser: Mario Badescu Cleansing Oil

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Night Cream: One Kind Dream Cream Night Moisturizer

Lip Mask: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Berry

This week there were two real changes to the nightly line up. This week I opened a sample of the One Kind Night cream. The sample tube had less than a week’s worth of product in it. Luckily my October Glossy Box came in late and it had a second sample in it, so i am going to roll that in as a replacement now that the first tube is empty. Hopefully it will have enough to get me through this upcoming week. The cream has no scent to it and it is quite moisturizing. It takes a while for it to fully absorb though so for about ten minutes after i apply it, I feel like my face is a little on the greasy side. After those ten minutes though it feels fine. Thus far i haven’t felt the need for a heavier cream, so it is moisturizing well. I have no problem using the second tube for a second week’s worth of product testing. I just don’t like that there was so little product in the tube to begin with. Other than that it seems okay.

As with the day time line up, I had issues with the cleanser. The Mario Badescu oil had no real scent to it, which I appreciated. It took off my makeup really well and rinsed off cleanly. I actually had no problems with the way it worked. However after two days I noticed my eyelids felt a little itchy after I washed my face. I didn’t think much of it, but then the next day it was worse. So I stopped using it and my eyelids stopped being itchy. As well as it cleaned, I think I might be allergic to one of the ingredients in the oil. It didn’t affect the rest of my face, at least in the length of time that I used it, but it made my eyelids unbearably itchy and I was starting to get red splotches. So I thought it best to discontinue use and just use my Makeup Eraser and water the remove my makeup for a while. It worked quite well, as always. I am going to have to take a long, hard look at the Mario Badescu label though in an effort to find out what it is that my eyelids just didn’t like. Whatever it is, I want to stay far away from it in the future.

This week, the focus was pulled from the skincare that worked well with no major issues to the problem children in the line up. With the cleansers acting up there was little attention paid to anything else. The other products worked well and I liked them. I will happily continue using them and next week, maybe I can focus on the effects of the good products rather than the effects of the not so fabulous for me ones. But for this week, that was my focus and this was my skincare line up.

Makeup Eraser

The Skincare Line up: October 29th, 2021

Once again Friday has arrived. And once again we look at the items currently in rotation in the Skincare line up. Interestingly enough as we go into December, I am also looking back over this years’ worth of products. There were quite a few samples I liked and wanted to try as full sized items to see if I liked them more long term or if it was just a temporary love affair. I am starting to look over the list I made so that when the Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sales hit, I can take advantage of them and pick up items I truly want to try. And of course I now want to try out some of the samples I have in my collection to see if they need to go on that list or if they just need to be cleared out to make space. It’s why this week I chose to rotate a sample moisturizer into the mix. But we’ll get to that soon enough. Are you ready to look at the line up? Good, then let’s get started

The Daytime Lineup

Deodorant: Native Deodorant Cherry and Vanilla Macaroon

Cleanser: Ren Perfect Canvas Clean Jelly Oil Cleanser

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Moisturizer: Filorga Oxygen Glow Crème

Okay, let’s go through the list. First you may notice the deodorant is the same brand but a different scent. I used up the current stick I was using and picked up a new one. I hoped that the Peppermint would be available (both in the deodorant and the Native Body Wash) but it was not in the store when I went. The cherry and vanilla macaron scent is stronger than any other scent I’ve tried from Native and it is oddly lasting. To me it smells like Cherry pie. And I repeatedly found myself turning and thinking ‘cherry pie’ for the first few days it was startling. Now I’m kind of used to it. However this scent is much stronger than the others and doesn’t fade away quite the same which is something to keep in mind.

The Ren Cleanser. It is a good cleanser but for some reason it doesn’t like coming out of the tube. As the level of product has dropped, this has become more and more frustrating. To be honest this might be the deciding factor in whether or not I would repurchase. It is a small thing but getting the product out when my hands are damp is a twice daily frustration that I am not really fond of. It is a great cleanser. If it came out of the tube with less effort I would happily put it on a repurchase list. As it is, I’d have to think about it. While there is some product left, I think I will end up running out before the end of next week and have to rotate something else in. Honestly, I’m not too sad about that.

Crest is a brand of dental care I trust and honestly I love the gum detoxify toothpaste. It makes my mouth feel extra clean. It is from the Pro Health line and my mouth feels healthy. I will probably say this repeatedly, especially as I have no plans to replace this toothpaste with anything other than a new tube of the same product when it runs out, but I really like this toothpaste. It honestly does make a difference in the feel of my mouth.

The Murad Hydrating toner is a good one for me. In general the Hydration line usually works well for my skin. It is their Acne fighting line that I have to use with caution. It takes down the blemishes but it dries out the skin. There is no problem with it here and it backs up my cleanser well, taking off the last of anything remaining on my face from my night creams so I have a fresh face to work with as I lean into my morning skin care routine.

I am still feeling my way around the 111Skin Essence. I think because the Missha Essence was so good at taking down redness and sun damage as an extra benefit, I am having to readjust my thinking with the essence. Thus far I love the scent. It is lightly floral but feels like a high end spa. I’ll admit, it makes me feel fancy to use. There is also the feeling of my pores opening up when I use it (kind of the same feeling when you stand in a really hot shower where the steam is so thick everything is sort of obscured and you can feel your skin opening up. It’s a similar sensation.) which is good since essences are designed to open your sin in preparation for the other skincare. I’m still thinking about this essence, but thus far, I kind of like it.

I still have no idea why this vitabrid C Serum is called Dual drop. From what I can tell it is a Vitamin C serum. Which is fins, I like vitamin c serums. The name just confuses me. I like that it is a thick serum as I like the feel of it. I also like that despite its thickness, it absorbs quickly without leaving extra product on the skin to make it feel greasy. At the moment I am enjoying it. I just need to delve deeper to find out about the Dual drop name.

I am absolutely in love with the Verso eye cream. It may be the best eye cream I have tried all year. And I’ve tried some good ones this year too. This beats them all. It isn’t greasy, it absorbs well with only a tiny drop of product needed and as it is a full sized 20 ml tube it will last a really long time. Oh yeah and it takes down a larger number of the fine lines at the side of my eyes than I thought possible. I kind of want to send a thank you note to Stockholm. I’m sure companies have received stranger things in the mail, but really. I’m kind of in love with this cream.

And so we reach the moisturizer. This is a sample size that I pulled from the skincare drawer. I am only about half way through the tube so it will have a second week. The cream has a slightly floral scent but it is a light, clean skincare floral scent, if that makes sense. And while you can smell it when you dispense it out of the tube, the scent very quickly dissipates and is pretty much a non-issue. It absorbs well and isn’t greasy. I think though that it would be best described as a day cream. I might be able to get away with it as a day and night cream in the head of the summer, but now, not so much. It wouldn’t provide enough moisture for me at night in the cooler months. This week I have really enjoyed using it as a day cream and look forward to using it another week.

And so ends the day, shall we take a peek into the night?

The Nighttime Line up

Cleanser: Ren Perfect Canvas Clean Jelly Oil Cleanser

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

Toner: Neutralyze Exfoliating Pads

Essence: 111Skin Antioxidant Energizing Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye cream: Verso Super Eye Serum with Retinol 8

Night Cream: Elemis Peptide 4 Plumping Pillow Facial

Lip Mask: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Berry

Clearly there is a lot of overlap in product usage. And really the products didn’t change much from day to night (except for the moisturizer which I swapped out for the night). So we will look at the three night time players.

The first is the Neutralyze. I like the exfoliating pads. They give a nice light exfoliation to the skin and while the blemish fighting treatment is great on the blemishes, it doesn’t dry out the rest of my skin. The serum in it is a little on the sticky side. What I like to do is use the toner pads and then give it a few minutes to settle in and work it’s magic. Then I return to the bathroom and continue with the serum. The serum knocks out all of the stickiness. I actually like the toner pads more than I like the regular serum. Don’t get me wrong I liked the serum as well and when I had break outs, it actually worked better. It was just a lot stickier and required at least an hour to settle before I could lay down to sleep. I will say that at the moment I have fewer blemishes and clogged pores than I have had in a while. While I generally only get hormonal break outs (and currently have one on my chin, just for fun) I am more prone to clogged pores that just give me strange areas so rough texture that kind of drive me nuts. At the moment I have significantly less of them. I think part of that is the daily mask from Healing Bark, but I think part of it may be down to the neutralize clearing out some of the clogged pores. As we enter the season of richer food, I think I will keep these pads on hand to help my skin out as needed. I don’t think they will remain a consistent part of my regime as I simply don’t get consistent break outs, but I will be keeping them on hand for when I do.

Elemis, oh Elemis. This is one of those brands where the products never cause me issues. Sometimes a few of their products are a bit strong in scent, but they work so well I am willing to ignore that. This plumping pillow facial has a lightly floral scent that smells more clean and fresh than cloying. It kind of reminds me of the lavender sachets my grandmother used to put under the pillows and in the chest of drawers. Only fresher and with a creamy feel to the scent.

This is technically speaking a night mask. However I have had a run of moisturizers that while they work as day cream, just don’t cut it at night. If using it as a mask, this cream is one I would use only a couple of times a week. I have been using it nightly in place of night cream. I have found I need significantly less. Which is fine with me. I am more than happy to stretch the use of an expensive product I like using over a longer length of time. However that time is coming to an end. I may be able to use the rest of this jar over the weekend but by Monday I will need to find a new product to use. I honestly did love this and would repurchase it in a heartbeat, either to use as a nightly skin treat or as a night mask a couple of times a week. It was a light weight moisturizer that didn’t clog my pores and didn’t weigh down the skin. It was quite honestly fabulous and I am sad to see it go. But rest assured, it will return.

Last week I forgot my lip mask and my lip balm from my desk went MIA. This week, I rolled located one of my Jersey Shore Cosmetics Lip balms and placed it on the desk and at night I used the Laneige lip mask every night. No more dry chapped lips. I know there will come a point mid-winter where the chapped lips are unavoidable, but I figure if I can hit the inevitable chapping spot with my lips in as good a condition as I can manage then there will be less pain and the chapping will be less. I like the mask. It is the second Laneige lip mask I’ve had. Oddly enough the other one was also Berry. While the berry is nice, I would like to try out different scents. It will be a while before I get there though as this jar of mask will last the better part of a year. I’m okay with that as it is value for my money and it is a lip mask that works amazingly well. I just wouldn’t mind trying a new scent the next time I pick up a lip mask.

And that my darlings is this week’s skincare line up. It was, for the most part positive. There will be a few changes next week and starting next week, as November gets rolling I will be looking back at some of my favorites throughout the year in an attempt to square away my own thoughts as to upcoming Black Friday Purchases. I know, more excuses to talk about skin care. I can hardly wait.

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The Skincare Line Up: October 22nd, 2021

Good morning my darlings and welcome to the weekly skincare line up. Here I get to chat briefly each week about the products I’m using and how I feel about them. For me this helps me actually figure out what is working, what I like and what is really just not good for my skin. I hope you find it helpful, or at least entertaining as well. So let’s dive in and see what we have this week.

The Daytime Line Up

Deodorant: Native Blackberry and Green Tea Deodorant

Cleanser: Ren Clean Skincare Perfect Canvas Clean Jelly Oil Cleanser

Toner: Murad Hydrating Toner

Essence: Time Revolution Artemisia Treatment Essence from Missha and 111SkinAntioxident Energising Essence

Serum: Vitabrid C12 Dual Drop Serum

Moisturizer: Seed Phytonutrients Light Weight Facial Lotion

Eye cream: Verso Super eye Serum with retinol 8

Sunscreen: Shiseido Ultimate Sun protector Lotion SPF 50

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Toothpaste

Okay this week I am still using the Native deodorant and it is still working well. Admittedly now that the temperatures have lowered, it doesn’t have to work quite as hard as it did before. I am almost at the tail end of the product so I will be picking up a new deodorant this week. I’m kind of hoping that they have the holiday scents out already. Last year I tried two, Peppermint, which loved and hope to buy again and Sugar Cookie which was interesting to try, but will not be making a repeat appearance. There was something off about the sugar cookie scent in a deodorant. At least for me.

The Ren cleanser is proving interesting. It cleans the skin really well and actually it is pretty good at removing makeup as well. But the clear gel formula is surprisingly difficult to get out of the bottle. You can’t squeeze the tube in the middle, you have to squeeze at the top and push the product down to the exit. I know that sounds really picky, but generally i wet my face then reach for the cleanser so I almost always have wet hands, and it is a slick tube. To use this I wet my face, then dry my hands, then reach for the cleanser. I like the product, but honestly, I don’t like how it dispenses, which honestly could prevent me from buying it again.

This week I finished the last of my Time Revolution Essence from Missha. I loved it, I used it, I reordered it and put it in the medicine cabinet where my babydoll will hopefully reach for it when he needs it. If I call it skincare, he won’t touch it. If I say it is designed to calm redness and put it in the medicine cabinet, he will reach for it. Sometimes perception is all.

So with the bottle in my skincare line up now empty, I rolled in the 111Skin Essence. I love the scent. It is refreshing and spa like. As my baby would say, ‘It smells fancy.’ And honestly I feel fancy using it. I’ve only used it for a couple of days but thus far it seems to be working well as a pore opening essence, which is sort of the point of an essence. I am happy to continue using it.

This week I am happy to say that I have finished the Seed Phytoneutriants lotion. I may have used the last little bit of moisturizer on my arms and hands as body lotion just so I could finish it up and not have to use it anymore this week. It is a good lightweight moisturizer. With the weather changing it is actually becoming a little too light weight for me. I have to admit that wasn’t why I used it up as boy lotion though. That was because I really wanted to just be done with it. While it is a good product it smells like damp hemp rope that has been molding in the back of the shed. At least that is the scent I get. I generally don’t mind the scent of hemp or CBD but for some reason this just got to me. I used it, I liked it and I am happy to let it go. I will not be repurchasing it.

I also won’t be repurchasing the Shiseido Sunscreen. As a brand I like Shiesido. In fact I have one of their moisturizers on my repurchase list. It is one I look for when the black Friday sales hit. But this sunscreen had too heavy a perfume for me. And it was a perfume scent that lingered. I used the last of the sample bottle this week, but I am very happy it is now empty. It is a great product and absorbs well, but for me the scent killed it.

The Night time line Up

Makeup Remover: Makeup Eraser Cloth

Cleanser: Ren Clean Skincare Perfect Canvas Clean Jelly Oil Cleanser

Toner: Neutralyze exfoliation Toner Pads

Essence: Time Revolution Artemisia Treatment Essence from Missha (Gifted by brand)

Serum: Vitabrid C 12 Dual Drop Serum

Eye Cream: Verso Super Eye Serum

Lips: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Berry

Night Mask: Elemis Peptide 4 Plumping Pillow Facial

Toothpaste: Crest Gum Detoxify Deep Clean

This week my body sort of purged all of the excess grease and sugar that I consumed last weekend while we had company visiting, so my skin wasn’t looking it’s best. I will say that once the blemishes started to rise, the Neutralyze toner pads really came in hand. I focused on the areas where problems usually arise, however I did use them all over my face. I was very pleased that while it helped me tame the blemishes, it also didn’t dry out my skin in the places where I wasn’t breaking out. I was very impressed by that.

This week i also got a lesson in taking care of my lips. This week the Laneige Sleeping mask ended up placed behind other products and I forgot to use it. The wind has been blowing the air is dryer and my lips are actually starting to chap. I forgot completely about the sleep mask until I took the pictures for this post. So this week, I am going to see if a week of use can banish the chapping from the week of not using the mask. It didn’t help that the lip balm on my desk was swiped so i didn’t have it to hand. I keep it on my desk because if i see it, I will fiddle with it and apply it. It stops chap from happening. With the lip balm MIA I forgot about it. I also think the plumping gloss I used this week didn’t really help. I’m not sure, but I suspect.

Everything else in my list is either chugging along nicely or hasn’t been used long enough for me to get too much of an idea of whether it is effective of not. All of it feels good and this week I will be rolling in a new moisturizer. I’m not certain if i will roll in a full size or see about using up some of the samples. I’ll have to see what I feel like when I go to the skincare drawer tonight to set the line up for the morning. For now, these are the active products on my list.


The Empties of May

The empties of May

Hello my darlings and welcome to a brand new month.  I hope you had a fabulous Memorial Day weekend.  May was an interesting month for Empties actually.  A lot of them were sample sizes, but there were a few full sizes.

I’m actually going to start the empties with a full sized product that I am very disappointed to run out of.  It is the Color Wow Dream Cocktail Coconut infused Hair Serum.  I absolutely loved this and have already ordered a replacement.  It was initially sent to me by Color Wow to try out and I have to say I am hooked.  You put the serum in your wet hair and then when you blow dry it , the heat activates the product.  It made my hair so soft and silky and gave me fewer fly aways.  Like I said I have already reordered this and will be keeping a bottle in my standard products retinue. 

In the bath I used the Andalou Naturals Citrus Sunflower Shower Gel .  This travel size lasted quite a while as you only need a little dollop to get a lot of suds.  It has a scent that smells like the shells of sunflower seeds mixed in with a light citrus scent.  I know that sounds a little strange but that is my best description.  It is a nice and very light scent.  The shower gel worked well and the scent dissipated quickly.  My skin felt clean and hydrated.  I would definitely consider purchasing this in the full size.

This month I tried a sample size of the La Roche Posay Anthelios Sunscreen SPF 50.  It is a mineral  sunscreen so there is a little bit of a white cast until you rub it in.  It does feel a little waxy.  I really liked this on my neck and upper chest, but I wasn’t a huge fan of it on my face.  I will actually be picking it up in a full size though as I really like it for everywhere except my face. 

There is one empty facial oil this month and it is the Earth Harbor Marina Biome Brightening Ampule.  To be honest I didn’t really notice any brightening from the product and  while it was an okay product, it isn’t one that I would repurchase.  It was just okay and I have tried several products that are better than just okay that I would repurchase first.

There were two serums in this month’s bin, one is a sample and one is a full size.  The sample size is the Loum Pure Serenity Golden C Serum.  To be honest it worked really well.  My skin looked and felt fantastic while I used the sample.  It is however highly fragranced.  It smelled like a very floral perfume. 

Not a skincare floral, a perfume floral.  While I was okay using the small sample I am not entirely certain I could use this on a daily basis with a full sized bottle.  It is a product I am on the fence with though.  I really liked the way it worked.  The scent is the only thing that gives me pause.  If it weren’t such an expensive serum, I might try a full bottle and if I couldn’t get through it just pass it on.  However it is quite pricey so I would have to really think about it before committing.

The second serum was sent by Influenster and it is the L’Oreal Midnight Serum.  This serum started off strong.  The first day was fabulous.  After two weeks of trying it, I absolutely adored it.  After about a month though I wasn’t seeing the effects as much as I did in the first two weeks.  And byt the end of the second month when the bottle was empty, I was ready to see it go.  The only thing I can think of is that my skin was lacking something that the serum provided and then once my skin stocked up on what was missing the serum became irrelevant.  I can find no other explanation.  In those first two weeks it was fantastic.  However after using the endite bottle, I don’t think I would purchase another one.

I finally managed to work my way through the Yensa CBD Superfood Dual Cleansing oil.  It was an interesting product.  It works really well but smells intensely of CBD oil.  After a while I stopped minding the scent so much and just concentrated on how fabulous it worked.  Because it really did work well.  It is one of those products that I wouldn’t mind using again if it happened to come my way, but it isn’t something that I would intentionally seek out.  I am glad I used it and I really like how it works. It is just the scent that keeps me from automatically repurchasing.

Oddly enough I loved the scent of the Akar Skin Balance Toning mist.   I also loved the orange glass bottle.  It worked well enough as a toner, but the product wasn’t my favorite.  It had the tendency to make my face feel a little sticky. It was a decent product and I wouldn’t mind using it again, but it isn’t something I am going to seek out as a must have. It is more of an if it is there I’ll use it kind of product.

There was one eye cream in the batch and it was the Perricone MD Soothing and Hydrating Eye Cream.  I really liked this eye cream and would not hesitate to repurchase it.  Interestingly enough I think I might like the sample size better than the full sized version.  One of the things I really liked was that the eye cream came in a tube with a very small hole to let product out. 

Since so little eye cream is actually needed, this was perfect.  I could dispense just a little bit of product and so this tine tube lasted a really long time. I know the full sized version comes in a jar. I’m sure the product works just as well, but I really like the smaller tube for eye creams.  But I would still purchase the jar.

Finally, we come to the moisturizers.  There are three, two sample sizes and one full size.  The first Sample sized moisturizer is the Neogen Dermalogy Probiotic Youth Repair Cream.  I really enjoyed this moisturizer.  It is very light weight and smells vaguely like candy.  It was very moisturizing and very well suited to the warmer months when you want a lighter moisturizer.

The second sample was the Arrow Radiant Skin Moisturizer.  I know Arrow is a brand that is owned by Birchbox and this sample did come to me in their subscription box.  It was okay.  To be honest that is all I have to say about it.  It was okay.  It wasn’t bad.  It wasn’t good.  It was just okay.  Fine to use in a pinch but utterly forgettable. I’d use it if there was nothing else around, but it isn’t something I’d order a full sized version of.

The last item in this month’s Empties bin is the full sized moisturizer the 111Skin Y Theorem Day Cream NACy2. I really enjoyed this cream.  It was very well suited to the day time.  It certainly wasn’t heavy enough to use at night.  It did exactly what it said it was going to do and it was a very nice moisturizer.  Because of some of the ingredients, it is a moisturizer that is more suitable for cooler temps than warmer temperatures so I wouldn’t use it in the summer time.  However I would definitely reorder it and use it in the winter time.

And that my darlings are the products I managed to use up in the month of May. There weren’t as many as there have been in past months, so this wasn’t a huge post. I actually like doing these every month, even when there aren’t a whole lot of products. It is nice to actually look at the products as they leave the house or get repurposed into something else and to actually take a moment to think about how I feel now that they are in fact leaving my skin care arena. I find it especially helpful to look at the sample sizes again and decide if I really want to try the full size. To be honest I completely forgot about the Neogen until I saw the tube and went ‘Oh yeah, I really liked that one.’ Hopefully you found it useful, or at least somewhat informative as well.


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The Skin Care Line Up: April 23rd, 2021

This week saw the passing of the thirty day mark for many skin care items in my line up and I will begin breaking those items down in full reviews next week to let you know my thoughts on them. There were a few items that rotated out and a couple that rotated in. It wasn’t a major shake up but there were some changes.

Daytime Skin Care

Deodorant: Native Powder and Cotton Deodorant

Cleanser: La Roche Posay Toleriane Purifying Foam Cleanser (end of week 5)

Toning Essence: Byroe Bitter Greens Toning Essence (end of week 4)

Serum: Loreal Midnight Serum (end of week 5)

Eye Cream: Perricone MD Smoothing and Hydrating Eye Cream (end of week 5)

Moisturizer: 111Skin Y Theorem Day Cream (end of week 5)

Sunscreen: Volition Prismatic Luminizing Shield in SPF 50

Over all there isn’t much change to report in about the skincare line up. While I loved the Loreal Midnight serum in the first two weeks of use, I’m not entirely certain I felt much improvement after the initial burst of delight. I’m looking into the ingredients but I am not entirely certain it is worth a repurchase.

The Byroe Bitter Greens essence is now one of my all time favorite morning products. I love the scent of the product and the way it seems to wake up my skin and helps it absorb more of my other products. I am really becoming a big fan of this.

The deodorant is still Native Brand as I want to go a full year with the brand before my final thoughts on it. I did finish the Water Lily and orchid deodorant yesterday so this morning I opened the Powder and cotton scented one I picked up to replace it. The scent is clean and fresh and actually smells like a newly washed shirt straight from the dryer. Minus the heat of course. It is a less perfume like scent than the Water lily and orchid and I think I am going to like it a lot more. The other one was just a little too floral for me. This seems like something I could live with for a long time.

But of course only time will tell.

My eye cream is running low so I am not certain how long before a replacement needs to be rolled in. I am actually liking the Perricone MD soothing and Hydrating cream. It hasn’t caused any clogged pores around my orbital bone and I think it is really helping to reduce the appearance of the fine lines around my eyes. I’ll have to do a photo comparison to see, but on a day to day basis I am liking it and kind of down about how empty the tube now feels. Still it is eye cream so a partially empty tube can still last a while. We’ll see how long this one lasts.

Night time Skincare

Makeup Remover:  CBD Superfood Dual Cleansing Oil from Yensa

Cleanser: La Roche Posay Toleriane Purifying Foam Cleanser

( I didn’t wear waterproof eye makeup this week so I didn’t need the separate eye makeup remover from Klorane)

Toner Akar Skin Balance Toning Mist (end of week 3)

Serum: Loreal Midnight Serum

Eye Cream: Perricone MD Smoothing and Hydrating Eye Cream

Moisturizer: All in one Egg Mellow Cream from Too Cool For School

Vitamin C Powder: The Nue Co Topical C (end of week 1)

Neck serum: Dermelect Self Esteem Beauty Sleep Serum

Lips: Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask (in Maple) – this week I didn’t use a lip scrub.

Wednesday night the SYS Superfood for Your Skin Moisturizing Cream in Prickly Pear cream ran out. It was just shy of the thirty day mark so I won’t be breaking it out in a full review. However I also don’t think I will be picking it up in a full size either. It was a nice cream and I think it would have been a lot more suitable in the warmer months given it’s consistency, however I just can’t get past the scent of it. The prickly pear scent just reminds me of cocktails and made me feel like I was sticky (even though I wasn’t) It was purely a scent thing. Which is a shame because it was a nice cream. The scent just wasn’t for me.

In it’s place I added the All in one Egg Mellow Cream from Too Cool For school. I’ve seen this brand and moisturizer around but never tried anything from the, before. I’m thrilled to get to try it out. I used it for the first time last night. It has a light scent I can’t quite identify yet and I was surprised at how thick it felt in comparison to the SYS formula. It absorbed well but aside from that it is too early to tell whether I will really like it or not. I’ll have more to report on that next week.

Other than that the night time routine is plodding along with no major issues to report. Everything is working fine.

And now for the not so everyday products in the line up

In other Skincare…

Versed Press Restart Gentle Retinol Serum

Earth Harbor Marina Biome Brightening Ampule

Good Genes from Sunday Riley

While I put the Good Genes from Sunday Riley in the line up, this week I used the last of it. I have yet to find a replacement. The Good Genes really is a very nice product and I very much enjoyed using it. I was actually a little bit sad when I had to place the bottle in the empties bin. Despite smelling vaguely of lemon scented cleaner, it made my skin feel and look amazing. It may be gone now but it is definitely on the to be repurchased list.

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The Marina from Earth harbor provides an extra burst of hydration to the skin after the retinol of the Versed Press Restart. I am still using those two times a week. I might shift to three times a week next week but i don’t think I’ll go any higher than that as my skin doesn’t need that much chemical exfoliation. Whole I like retinoids and exfoliators in general it is very easy to overdo them. Sometimes less is more. It is a very gentle product though and even though i am spending more time in the sun I have not had any sun sensitivity. I also put on extra sunscreen the morning after I’ve used the Bersed Press restart so I think that helps. The Volition Prismatic Luminizing shield is still my go-to as far as daily sunscreen goes. As always it gets two thumbs way up.

and that y darlings is a quick review of this week’s skin care line up. As many products have passed the 30 day mark I will start rolling them into full individual reviews starting next week. That’s where we get to peer at the labels and poke around at the listed ingredients. I also get to look at claims and pass judgement on if the product actually met the claims listed and if I think I would repurchase it in the future. Fun stuff. well I think its fun. That’s of course one of the reasons I do it. I’ll see you back here later this afternoon for the Friday Face mask. As for me, it is is time to change clothes and head off to the gym and the start of my new fitness program. Wish me luck!

And that is the weekly Skin care update.  Some of the products are edging towards the recycling bin while others are about to face the spotlight of a deep dive into their ingredients list. At the moment I am pretty happy with my skin.  I have a few blemishes that I am clearing away, but other wise, I don’t think it is looking too shabby.

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The Skin Care Line up: March 26th, 2021

The Line up: March 26th, 2021

Let’s talk skin care. We all know by now it is a topic I can talk about for hours as I find the ingredients endlessly fascinating. While the products each have their own dedicated post discussing the ingredients and details (once they’ve gone through the full trial), this is more of a general feel for the products I am using as they are being used.

The products:

Make Up Remover: Clean it Zero Cleansing Balm from Banila Co with Klorane Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover

Cleanser: La Roche Posay Toleriane Purifying Foam Cleanser

The cleansers

Exfoliator: Didn’t use a physical exfoliator this week

Toner: Akar Skin Balancing Toning Mist

Essence: Finished the Neogen Real Ferment Micro Essence and will start the Byroe Bitter Greens Toning Essence

Akar Toner, 111Skin Moisturizer and Perricone MD eye cream

Serum: (can’t talk about until March 31st)

Retinol: Versed Press Restart Gentle Retinol Serum (Tuesday and Thursday nights)

Oil: Earth Harbor Marina Biome Brightening Ampule (after retinol)

AHA: Good Genes Sunday Riley (on the mornings after using retinol)

Retinol and friends: Versed Retinol followed with the earth Harbor oil and then the next day the AHAs of Good Genes are deployed

Eye Cream: Perricone MD Soothing Hydrating Eye Cream

Moisturizer: 111 Skin Y Theorem Day Cream

Night Cream/Mask: Pearl Brightening mask from Lapcos

The lips: Hanalei scrub and Bite Beauty

Lip Scrub and Mask: Hanalei Sugar lip scrub and Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask

Neck: Dermelect Self-Esteem Beauty Sleep Serum

Deodorant: Native Water Lily and Orchid Natural Deodorant.

While the Klorane eye makeup remover is usually something I hold on to for removing difficult makeup, I found myself using it a lot more this week as the Clean it Zero cleansing balm sort of stings my eyes a bit.  What I found myself doing was using the cleansing balm on the lower half of my face and then finishing it off and using the Klorane to get all eye makeup off so that my eyes wouldn’t sting.  Then I would go in with the wet Makeup Eraser to get anything that was missed before washing my face. (By the way currently Makeup Eraser sends 10% of it’s proceeds to clean water initiatives. You can click on the link to go and look at more details if you are interested.)

my favorite neck serum

I really like the La Roche Posay Purifying Foam Cleanser, which really shouldn’t be a surprise as any time I run out of the cleanser I’m using and I haven’t thought to order another one or have none in my skin care drawer I tend to pick the La Roche Posay up at Target. 

It is a really good cleanser.  I damp my skin and rub it on in its cream like form.  I like to make sure everything is covered and this is how I do it.  Then it foams up when you add more water during rinsing.  It is a very gentle cleanser and I can also use it post gym work out to remove sweat and have no worries of over drying my skin.  I am a big fan.

bare skin facing front

I also wanted a cleanser I could trust as I start to go back to the gym.  I’m working out with a mask on and I can see several breakouts thinking about rising from the increased masking time.  Thus far I’ve been able to deal with them without a major outbreak, but it made the cleanser a really important element (not that it isn’t always) in my routine.  I have several cleansers I need to try out, so I may have to pause my use of this bottle at some point to try something new, but I wanted something I knew my skin liked.  Sometimes tried and true does beat new.

and to the side so you see all the lines

The toner I am using from Akar is working well.  I tried the sample size of this a while ago and liked it.  I’ll have to do a full review on this when I’m done but I’m kind of on the fence about the product. There are some things I’ve noticed using it for a longer period that didn’t really show up in the trial size. I do however like the fact that it is a spray toner.  I am finding that with the reusable rounds replacing my disposable cotton rounds, the reusable ones soak up a lot more product, so you have to use more to get the same results.  With a spray it is less of an issue as I spray my face and then go in with the cotton round. It is a bit of an adjustment, but I like using the reusable rounds so I am okay with adjusting.

And to the other side so you see them too: and in case you are wondering about the look on my face in this one as I was taking the picture there was a strange sound outside the bathroom door just as I pressed the button. I just didn’t manage to get back and retake the photo.

I finally finished up the last of my Neogen Real Ferment Micro Essence.  The link will take you to the full review of it.  I am now rotating in the Byroe Bitter Greens toning essence.  You will notice that it is not full once I show the initial picture next week. (I didn’t put it in the line up pics because I haven’t officially rolled it into the line up yet.) 

I tried this as a toner a while back and wasn’t sure I liked it as a toner (technically it is a toner and essence in one).  As I needed to think about it a bit, I set it to the side.  I am going to try it as an essence and see how it works with using the Akar as the toner.  I might have to play around with the two to see what I prefer, but I will start roll the Byroe into my line up this evening.

Everything else is chugging along and working fairly well.  I suspect the Pearl Night mask won’t last the weekend so I will have to decide what to replace it with.  I’m not entirely certain I like the Pearl Night Mask.  It is one of those products that has it’s pros and cons.  The final review of it will go out next week as I rotate in a new, as yet to be determined product.  I am thinking of raiding my samples and seeing what night masks lurk.  Because I am using a day cream as my moisturizer I will certainly have to have a different product to use at night.  The Y Theorem day Cream by 111 Skin is definitely a day cream.

My deodorant is still holding up well. when I switched to the Native in the summer I was concerned about the wet armpits, however after a few weeks of use the sweat became less as my body adjusted. It hasn’t been an issue at all lately. Part of that is of course the cooler temps of autumn and winter. I think some of the sweat was the summer sun and some of it was my body adjusting. As the temps heat back up (admittedly in fits and spurts right now) I’ll be keeping a close eye on it. The scent of this Water Lily and Orchid is fine. I like the scent, but I think I might try a different scent when this one runs out. As they generally have several to choose from, I’m sure I’ll find another one to try. I suspect I will end up eventually going back to the Cucumber and Mint, but I want to try out some of the others first.

Over all everything seems to be working well.  I have a few more potential break outs from wearing my mask more but thus far they are under control.  I will be using the Herbal Dynamics Beauty Chamomile and Cacao Clearing mask this afternoon in an attempt to take care of them further, but none of the products is causing me any major issues. At the moment, I think my skin isn’t looking too bad.

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The Empties: November and December 2020

Last month I completely spaced on doing a review of the empties in my bin so there is a lot to go through this month.  Most of these items had full posts listed on my site so if you want more fulsome details I hope you check them out.  This is just a rundown of the products I used up, along with a few notes about what I think of them now that they are gone.

The products all laid out

Item number one is the Marc Jacobs Youthquake.  I had high hopes for this one.  It smelled nice and in general I like Marc Jacobs’ products.  This however felt very heavy on the skin and was far too moisturizing for me to take. 

I could use it as a night cream but not during the day.  To use it up I ended up using it at night (and to be honest, also on my elbows which tend to get really dry in the winter).  It was fine at night (and my elbows loved it) but it was too heavy during the day.  I will not be repurchasing it. I will be reusing the very pretty jar somewhere though.

The PureHeals Pore Clear Black Charcoal peel off mask is also not going to make it to my repurchase list.  While I like the mud masks that PureHeals makes (and will order those repeatedly) this mask was not for me.  It never did anything for my skin that I could tell and it hurt to peel it off.  If a peel off mask is going to hurt then I want to see some results.  After all the Hey Honey Take off The Drama mask hurt like the dickens but my skin was fabulous afterwards.  This just hurt and offered no return.  I kept trying and it never got better.  So it is good by to the empty and I will not be picking it up again.

the A+ high dose retinoid (L) and ICE Moisturizer (R)

Next up there is a trial size of the Sunday Riley A+  High Dose Retnoid Serum.  I enjoyed using this very much and will be picking up a full sized bottle sometime in the near future to try out in my retinol trials. It was very nice and gone far too soon.

I will not miss the Marcelle CC Cream.  I finished this small tube up last week and happily added it to the empties bin.  While it is a wonderful color corrector, over the course of the day it seeped into the fine lines around my eyes and made me look super tired. 

Marcelle Golden Glow CC Cream and Tarte Shape Tape Concealer

Plus, it lives up to the name Golden Glow and made my face very glowy, which is not my thing.  And so this too will sadly not be repurchased.  I was disappointed as every other Marcelle product I’ve tried has been top notch.

Also disappointing was the Dove Nutritive Solutions for Volume and fullness.  While I love Dove products in general and usually have no problems with them, this shampoo and conditioner set just didn’t work for me. 

While I don’t normally have a problem with tangles, while using this shampoo and conditioner, I ended up having more tangle problems than usual.  I also felt like my hair was slightly dull and getting some build up.

The first few washes were fantastic.  But then it just went downhill fast. While I love the brand Dove and will continue to buy other products, this shampoo and conditioner set won’t be one I will repurchase.

I have to say, I am slightly on the fence about the feel renewed Pumpkin Walnut facial cleanser. I never actually thought I’d say that. Because this is not my first tube. It is the scent that always gets me, and if I’m honest, it is the reason I purchase it.  I adore the scent and it was a good clean, but it was a rather rough exfoliate when it comes down to it.  I believe I used it early in November, maybe even late October.  The scent was suitable for the time frame and utterly delicious. 

I have tried a couple of other exfoliating scrubs that perform better, even if they don’t smell as yummy.  The Olay Regenerist scrub in particular smelled nice and clean and was a much gentler product on the skin. I think this may fall into the category of I’d use it if it ended up coming into my possession but I wouldn’t seek it out. It is a good exfoliator for once or twice a week, I just don’t think I would want to keep it stocked. I just need to find something better with the same scent.

I will be stocking the pixi skintreats Clarity Tonic though.  It was a fantastic toner and I had wonderfully clear skin while using it.  While I like other pixi toners, I have to say this one thus far is at the top of the list.  This doesn’t mean I won’t try other Pixi products, but this one is a definite repurchase.

I cannot say the same thing for the Whish Botanical Primer, the Derma E radiance toner or the Balance me Bakuchiol soothing Serum.  Although I do think I will be looking into bakuchiol more closely as an ingredient.

The Balance me and the Derma E products both worked well, enough but the scent of them both was not one I appreciated nor wanted to face every day. I find it kind of a shame as they were good products. However I know myself and the scents just meant that if I repurchased them in a full size I would slowly stop using them because I couldn’t take the scent.

The Derma E was floral and somewhat cloying while the Balance me smelled a bit like floor cleaner.  I just know the product would go to waste if I purchased them. The Whish primer, however, was something altogether different. 

Derma E toner and Georgette Klinger Collagen and Elastin Mask

The Whish botanical Primer was a failure as a primer. An Absolute Failure. It did nothing a primer really should be expected to do. It was however pretty good skin care.  While this primer won’t be returning any time soon, it worked well enough as skin care that I am going to be looking into the other products from this Whish line that are specifically designed for skin care use.  I will not use this as a primer. So it will not be returning, but some of its brand compatriots will.  I can’t be upset about trying it though as it did bring Whish to my attention.

Sulwhasoo serum, Whsh Botanical Primer and Goldfaden Needleless Serum

The Tatcha Deep Cleanse will hopefully soon make a return in a full size.  I really enjoyed this cleanser.  It was one of the few exfoliating cleansers that I have tried that I found I could use on a daily basis with no skin damage. 

My skin looked and felt wonderful while using it and I really enjoyed the scent of the cleanser as well.  It is lightly floral but with enough of a fruit back note to keep it from being cloying.  I was somewhat surprised as I didn’t particularly care for Tatcha’s moisturizers when I tried them.  However I can see why this cleanser is one of the brand’s best sellers. It is definitely something I want to repurchase.

Elemis Pro-collagen marine Cream and Tatcha Deep Cleanse

There were four sample sized moisturizers in my bin this time around and I have to say all five of them made my list of products that I would want to reorder in a full sized version.

The Sunday Riley Ice moisturizer is not the most appealingly scented cream. It smells vaguely medicinal.  However, it is a thick cream that disappears into the skin and hydrates well.  I think as a night cream it would work well for me.  It is also one of those products where the product worked well enough that I found I could live with the scent.  As I am very scent oriented (in case you hadn’t guessed), that is saying something.

The second sample was the Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine cream.  It shouldn’t come as a surprise that I enjoyed it as there are very few products from Elemis that I don’t enjoy.  This sample came to me through a Look Fantastic Box and I was happy to get the chance to try it before adding a full size to my try out list.

The third sample was from Skin Ceuticals and it it is the Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 moisturizer.  The sample worked well as both a day and a night cream and It is one I would certainly want to try out for longer.

Surprisingly the fourth is the 111Skin Y Theorem Day Cream.   With 111 Skin I am sometimes on the fence with them  I like a lot of their products but there are few I fall in love with.  Especially after seeing the price.  They usually strike me as good, but not quite good enough to justify the price.  I don’t mind paying more for a product I think is worth the price. Especially where skincare is concerned.

This is one moisturizer I could easily see myself falling in love with. It claims to be a day cream and that is exactly what it is.  I really like a product that stakes a claim on one thing and does it well.  I liked it enough that when I looked at the price of the full size I actually found myself thinking it sounded like it was priced correctly. 

That was how much I enjoyed the sample.  I was very sad when the sample ran out and you can bet that anytime I see a sample of this up for grabs I will be snapping it up. This is one of the few things from 111 Skin that I believe actually earns its price tag.

Another product that earns it’s price, although it is substantially lower in price is the Timeless SkinCare Hyaluronic Acid Serum.  I believe a full sized bottle is around $9.95, but trust me, this serum is something I would actually pay twice that for, maybe even three times.  During my use of it, I actually saw a reduction in the Great Stress Crack of Mimsy, which is what I call the ever deepening line across my forehead.

While using this, it not only didn’t deepen, but it appeared to be getting shallower.  I was sad when it ran out. I have two hyaluronic acid serums to test out from other brands and now that I’ve had a few weeks without this serum, I am going to start a trial of the next sot see how it performs.  But right now, Timeless SkinCare has set the standard and it is a pretty high mark to reach.  Regardless of future trials, this was an excellent serum offered at an excellent price and it is one that I foresee making several repeated trips to my skin care shelf.

A few products that won’t return?  The Sulwhasoo first care Activating serum.  Its herbal scent I could get used to if it was an amazing product, but it left my skin sticky and not feeling improved.  The Goldfaden, MD Needle-less line corrector will not be returning either.  It felt like it was stinging, but beyond the stinging it didn’t do much.  In general Goldfaden, MD and I have not had the best history.  I have a serum to try from the brand, but thus far everything I have used from the brand has left me saying ‘Thanks, but no thanks. ‘

Sadly the Pa’akai cleansing cream also falls into that category.  It cleanses well enough, but the scent is just far too perfume-y for me to take on a twice daily basis.  Incidentally, I did use the product up, but there was just enough remaining to coat the back of the bottle where it lay in the empties bin so it looks full. It fooled me too but I opened it and looked inside thinking I might not have finished it out. But oh yeah, it is empty and the perfume scented remains remind me why I am not using it.

I found myself trying to avoid washing my face while using it, and that is not a good thing.  There are many steps I could probably skip in a skin care routine should I want to pair it down.  Washing my face isn’t one of them.  So, it is a good cleanser, but sadly the scent just made it not for me.

Also not for me is the Tarte Shape tape Concealer.  It works well as a spot concealer, blending beautifully into my skin and hiding red spots and blemishes.  But it settled into the fine lines under my eyes and just made me look haggard.  Which is not what I want in a concealer.  So I used the last of this little sample size up as a spot corrector. And now it is empty and will not be repurchased. Sadly I used to love the Shape Tape Concealer.  I think that as I get a little older, my skin’s needs just change.  I have changed not the product. If fine lines aren’t a problem for you then you will still love it. (if you like it now). This was an excellent concealer for me once upon a time, but no more. 

Benefit They’re Real Mascara, Wander Beauty Mile High Mascara, Maybelline Color Strike Shadow, wet ‘n wild liquid liner and Revolution’s Fast Base Concealer.

I do have a second concealer in my empties bin this go around and it is the Fast Base Concealer from Revolution.  I love this concealer, never had any problems with it settling in my fine lines and will be repurchasing it very soon. 

The fact that is it a $3 concealer, if I remember correctly, doesn’t hurt the wallet either. I don’t mind paying a lot for products that work, but good products come in all sorts of price ranges, and this one certainly proves it.  The Fast Base will be repurchased.

There are two empty mascaras in my empties bin.  One is the Mile High Lashes from Wander Beauty and the other is a sample sized tube of They’re Real from Benefit Cosmetics.  While each performed well, to be honest, neither are the products I prefer from the brands.  With Wander Beauty I would purchase the Unlashed Volume and Curl Mascara before I would purchase the Mile High Club mascara.  With Benefit, I would purchase Bad Gal Bang before I would pick up They’re Real.  That isn’t to say that they are not both quality products, but I doubt I would purchase either of them specifically.  If going onto their brand pages, other products would draw my attention.  So I did like them, and wouldn’t mind using them again, I just know that if shopping, they aren’t the ones I would repurchase.

Also not making my repurchase list was the First Aid Beauty Primer.  It is a mattifying yet hydrating primer but my skin isn’t dry enough for the product.  If I had skin that was a great deal drier, this would be a different conversation.  But alas I don’t.  So the First Aid Beauty primer I would not repurchase.  If you have really dry skin and are looking for a mattifying primer, you might have better luck than I did with this product.

One primer I will consistently repurchase is the Yensa tone up primer.  This is either the second or third tube of this that I have gone through and I absolutely adore it.  It mattifies and fills pores really well and my skin reacts really well to it.  It makes my top ten favorites list. In fact everything I’ve tried form the Super 8 line from Yensa has been really good in general. I’m actually finishing out a BB cream sample size from the brand this week that I know I am going to have to order in a full size once I’ve whittled down my foundation products.

L to R: Hey Honey Gold Mask, Yensa Primer, Hey Honey CC Cream

The Hey Honey Trick and Treat CC cream is also on my reorder list.  It fairly melted into the skin and left me with a beautiful no makeup look that worked really well for daily wear.  I adored the formula and will be purchasing a full size in the future.

As far as Hey Honey goes I will also be reordering the Show Your Glow Colloidal Gold and Honey Beauty Mask.  I really like how soft and lovely it made my skin feel.  The fact that I wandered around the house for fifteen minutes looking like I’d been gilded by a wandering art restorer was kind of fun as well.  But the mask was fabulous.

I also want to order a full sized version of the Georgette Klinger Collagen and Elastin Mask (pictured above with Derma E).  The sample I tried worked really well on my skin and it is one I would not mind keeping a full size of around. It plumped up my skin and diminished my fine lines after one use.  The tube had enough for three uses and I was happy to use it for an entire week of masking.  I was however very sad when it was empty. So to the repurchase in a full size list the product goes.

As much as I like Native Deodorant, I have to say the sample size of the holiday scent Sugar Cookie was enough for me.  The sample size lasted a little over a month and quite frankly as much as I liked it, I was happy to end the trial. I am still using my Native Deodorant, but it is the Cucumber and Mint. 

Like the holidays, it was nice while it lasted, but I was happy to resume the standard once it was done. I could not have taken a full size of this.  I am still upset I didn’t pick up the fill size of the Candy Cane Scent, but they didn’t have it at Target (apparently it sold out extremely fast) and I didn’t get around to ordering it in time.  That one I probably could have used longer than the Sugar Cookie. Mostly because I adore peppermint.

I still don’t know why spearmint (an inferior to peppermint in my opinion) gets to live on throughout the year, but peppermint, fabulous peppermint is banished to the holidays. Because of this I stock pile products and end up using products decorated for Christmas in June. It isn’t right. Do you know how many bars of Dr. Squatch’s Peppermint soap I have squirrelled away in my linen closet? I don’t either and I’m not counting because it would make me feel bad, but I do now have an absolutely deliciously scented linen closet. But that isn’t the point so I will end my pro-peppermint rant and get back to the empties.

I know this is a behemoth of a post, but there are only two more items and then, my darlings, we are through.  The Color Strike Shadow from Maybelline was  really hard to work with and had the added effect of not staying long on the lid once I got it to work.  While I generally like Maybelline Products, this was not my favorite.  I am getting rid of it because trying to make it work nearly drove me bonkers. I’m sure there is product remaining in the tube, but it was so hard to ge out onto the little brush that I couldn’t prove it. It will not be repurchased.  I’ll still use Maybelline products, just not this particular product.

And to end on a good note.  The wet ‘n wild liquid megaliner eyeliner. It reminded me of how much I really liked liquid eyeliners. It performed magnificently and I was so sad when the product reached the end of its productive life.  It went on smoothly and after letting it dry a moment, it stayed put all day without fading.  (If you don’t give it a moment to dry it will transfer when you blink because it is a wet liquid. So just give it a second and you are good).

I will repurchase this product and I will continue repurchasing this product.  I will also be picking up more liquid eyeliners from different brands in the future. As a side note, the wet ‘n wild liquid eyeliner was the very first eyeliner I learned to apply way back in Junior High. I loved it then and I find it amusing all these years later to find that it is still a great product. So many of the products i used to absolutely adore when I I was first introduced to makeup have either sadly gone away or are kind of amusing to look back on. I find it fun to find one product that still works as good as I thought it did when I first started with makeup.

And with that my darlings we are finally through with two months’ worth of empties.  If nothing else this reminds me that I need to remember to do these once a month or suffer the wrath of an overflowing bin and an extraordinarily long post.  I nearly forgot about some of the items towards the bottom.

If you stuck with me, thanks for making it to the very end. If you didn’t’, don’t worry, it was a really long haul and I almost gave up midway through myself. I will see you at the end of January with next month’s empties in a much more manageable sized post. I have put it on my nice new calendar so that I will not forget it. I will also be back this afternoon with a perfume review as well, but I am definitely remembering the empties bin each month instead of letting it carry over.