Using the Volition Yaupon Tea Glow Awakening Moisturizer

This moisturizer was one that i started using before I left, used while I was gone and am now scraping the bottom of the jar to finish up. I intended to do a first use post but time sped a little past me. I will be finishing up the last of this Volition Yaupon Tea Glow Awakening Moisturizer this week and will cover it briefly in the weekly skincare line up on Friday but i thought it deserved it’s moment in the sun.

It is described as

…A naturally caffeinated moisturizer powered by yaupon tea, hyaluronic acid and bakuchiol that revives and visibly plumps tired-looking skin for a brighter, smoother complexion.

As I’m sure you already know, Hyaluronic acid is a favorite of mine and helps to plump the skin by locking in moisture. Bakuchiol works like a retinol but has less of a tendency to make the skin sun sensitive. I’m guessing the yaupon tea is the source of the caffeine. When I looked it up I found that the leaves for the tea come from the yaupon holly and are also supposed to reduce redness and puffiness. I also found many many sights selling the tea as a tea designed to caffeinate you without giving you the jitters.

melts with skin’s heat like a water cream

While i can’t tell you what it might do for you taken internally (as a tea designed to drink and not the moisturizer) I can tell you that I really enjoyed using it topically. Before I left my skin was stressed (along with the rest of me) and I had quite a few breakouts. I have a photo taken bare faced of me before I left and one taken this morning for comparison. A lot of my break outs were more clogged pore bumps or just rising in the photo to become breakouts shortly after.

skin before I left, more bumpy than broken but you can see a few blemishes beginning their rise of doom

it was stress worry and exhaustion. And while those things did follow me home, I was able to get my skin under control. Partially because before I left I was stressed by knowing bad things were coming and having no capacity to stop them and then once I was home I could at least do something to help even if I couldn’t stop them which let me feel as though i was doing something. Which helped with the stress. With the stress toned down my skin stopped freaking out and I worked at clearing it up.

when clearing up blemishes my skin is repaired in damaged areas but tends to dry out in others. this is mostly due to the use of salicylic acid. I am not a terribly oily person in general and so when I dry out zits the skin around them often takes a hit, so skipping moisturizers is just not a good idea. But i didn’t want a heavy moisturizer. I chose this one (testing it first on my arm to make certain nothing cause a reaction – I had never used anything with youpon before so I wanted to be certain rather than cause more problems) because it has the light consistency of a water cream. Plus my skin usually reacts well to Volition products. Their sunscreen is a staple in my routine, I adored the Snow Mushroom serum and the Celery Green Moisturizer was fantastic.

skin when I returned. Still exhausted, but fewer bumps and break outs and a definate taming of the redness

I thought it wouldn’t be too heavy on my skin and it wasn’t. The cream has a light skincare scent that smells as though there might be something lightly herbal mixed in. It is a very light scent that fades almost immediately. My godmother is extremely scent sensitive and while I was home I had her try it out and the scent didn’t bother her. As she has a reaction to a lot of products I thought this was a good sign.

The cream applied well. And provided enough moisture for my skin during the day with a small amount of product. I had intended to take a night cream that i knew would cause no problems with me, but I forgot and used this Volition moisturizer as both day and night cream. At night I applied more than I did in the day and it did a decent job. If I used this as a day and night cream in the future, I would probably add a night mask once or twice a week.

As a reference point, skin wise, my skin tends to fall into the normal/combination category. I am slightly more oily in the summer and slightly more dry in the winter. And to be fair, when I started using the Volition Moisturizer it was in a 90% humidity environment with 90+ degree heat and then fall sort of kicked summer out overnight and the humidity dropped to 20% and the temps were suddenly in the sixties.

I’m actually surprised my skin didn’t freak out and all I thought was that a few nights a week I would like to have a night mask. Which kind of makes this Yaupon Tea Glow Awakening Moisturizer pretty impressive.

It did take a little while to absorb and until it absorbed completely it felt a little stick on the skin. It was kind of interesting. I would touch my cheek a few times. Stick, then sticky, then poof petal soft with no stickiness at all. Once the moisturizer absorbed my skin was soft. The dry patches were hydrated, the breakouts weren’t irritated and as the stress and blemishes faded I really liked the look of my skin.

As a day cream this was fantastic, it just needed a little time to settle in and lose the stickiness. As a night cream it worked well but depending on your own level of oiliness I would consider rolling in a night mask a few times a week as needed. The scent is light and didn’t irritate the skin or nose of the most scent sensitive person I know. So the final question, would I purchase this Yaupon Tea Glow Awakening Moisturizer from Volition again?

the answer is yes, most definitely. I would use it more as a day cream on the next go round, but it is definitely a product I would purchase a second time.

Speaking of products I love, the MANE CLUB has a special discount code on their best sellers bundles. The One Hit Wonder is a staple for me but every item in this bundle is something I have used before and would always love to use again. Plus even without the code, these products don’t break the back even if they do feel like they are worth a million bucks. this is one of those affordable brands that has some heavy hitters. You can get a deal on their Best Sellers Bundle with the code BUNDLE15 now through November 19th, 2022. Well worth stocking up for the holiday season or for gifting to your favorite hair care fanatic.

First use of the Korres Santorini Grape Poreless Skin Cream

I couldn’t help it, but the lure was too strong. I had to open the new Korres Santorini Grape Poreless Skin Cream and start trying it out. I know looks aren’t everything, but just look at the light green of that glass jar. It just says pick me up and give me a try. So i am.

In general I really like the Korres brand. I find their products to be both fairly priced and effective. The Pomegranate line has found a permanent love in my heart, despite the fact that they seem to have let it go (sniff, sniff, so sad). I like the rose but not as much as the pomegranate, and since I have an allergy to pine I have to avoid that line, but the yogurt face masks are always in rotation in my mask collection. the Golden Krocus is high on my list to try.

inner lid with tab

I have not tried anything from the Santorini Grape line so I was over the moon when it was a choice Item in my Boxycharm for June. It has been on my must try list since it’s release and when I saw it I pounced. I’m sure there were other options, but I didn’t really bother looking.

And I did order the Santorini Grape Velvet Skin Drink Serum this morning as well because i couldn’t resist giving it a try. But it’s first use will come, for now it is time for the moisturizer.

According to the product page…

For: Oily, Combination + Sensitive, A lightweight gel moisturizer that blurs pores, controls shine, and hydrates skin all-day using a powerful blend of Hyaluronic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Willowherb Extract, and the antioxidant-rich, Santorini Grape.

Key Benefits:  Poreless complexion,  Balanced all-day hydration,  Smooth skin canvas


At this time of year I am at my oiliest although I suspect i fall into the combination category. So this is about perfect and it is about the perfect time of year for me to try this moisturizer. As I mentioned above it is in a beautiful green glass jar. I know looks aren’t everything but I do like looking at a pleasing array of skincare on my shelf. It is okay to like pretty things, they just have to be pretty things that also pull their weight in the skincare department.

Opening the jar there is a stout plastic lid as a barrier to air, which I really like. It has a little pull tab to lift it off the top of the jar. It is wide and round and fairly easy to grab and lift. The inner plastic lid fits securely but it isn’t extremely tight so you don’t have to struggle with it if you don’t have a lot of hand strength. You just have to be able to grip the tab. Barring that slipping a thumbnail under the edge can flip it up for those with issues making pinching motions.

I find the scent of this moisturizer interesting. It does smell of grapes which I expected, but it is a grape that has had the sugars removed and smells almost like it is blended with plain yogurt. I didn’t see any yogurt on the list of ingredients so perhaps this is just a face mask hold over. The moisturizer has the same color as the mask, so perhaps that leans into it.

The Santorini Grape Poreless Skin Cream is a thicker sort of cream. It has the consistency of Greek Yogurt actually. It is the kind of cream that I scoop out a little and either dot it lightly on my face and then rub in or rub my hands together and then apply to my face. The second method will cause it to absorb faster on the skin and is fantastic when you are running late in the morning. Even if you choose the first method of dotting it on the skin before massaging it in, it won’t take long to absorb, just start with little dollops as a little goes a long way with this moisturizer.

The scent of the moisturizer fades as you apply it and once it dries down your face is not sticky at all. As a first use, it was a positive experience and I am happy that I will get to use it for the next month. July here promises to be incredibly hot and insanely humid, which is when my skin not only feels oily, but because I sweat so much I end up getting oddly dry patches from salty sweat running over the skin. I am hoping that this combination skin oriented Santorini Grape Poreless Skin cream from Korres will be just the thing to get me through with healthy skin. But only time will tell.

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Korres Greek Natural Beauty

One month of the Embryolisse Lait Creme Sensitive

Embryolisse has been around for a long time. Their iconic multi-use moisturizer has been around since the 1940s and growing up I remember both my grandmother and mother using it. So when Embryolisse sent three moisturizers from the Lait Creme line for me to try out and review I was thrilled. I was familiar with only the original Lait creme Concentre so I started with that and am now working my way through the other two and comparing them to the original.

The second Embryoliss moisturizer I have been testing out has been the Lait Creme Sensitive. According to the product page…

The Lait Crème Sensitive is ideal for the sensitive and reactive skin of adults, children and babies alike. It was specifically formulated to soothe, nourish and moisturize easily damaged skin which reacts to the tiniest trigger, and needs the most tender care. This type of fragile skin is steadily increasing in all industrialized countries. The creamy milk texture leaves a comfortable, non-greasy, silky veil over the face and body.

The Lait Crème Sensitive has a creamy formula that moisturizes, nourishes and protects even the most reactive skin. The cream shares the very same properties as the Embryolisse cult favorite Lait Crème Concentré, in a new hypoallergenic formula developed for sensitive skin! The multi-function skincare is suitable for all the family and gathers all the benefits of the Lait Crème Concentré in a formula that is: Fragrance-free*, Sulfate-free, Phthalate-free


While using it I found this cream to preform as a moisturizer in almost exactly the same way as the lait creme concentre. It moisturized well, absorbed well and was an all round good moisturizer. There were however a few differences between it and the concentre.

no white caste even when freshly applied

If I had to choose a word to describe the Lait-creme sensitive from Embryolisse it would be light. There is a slight scent to the cream that is reminiscent of the concentre, but it is significantly lighter. The creme looks exactly the same in the palm of the hand, but again when applied it feels a little bit lighter. In fact in every aspect you can say it is is like the Lait creme concentre but lighter.

Which is not a bad thing. It is the sensitive version so lighter scent and a hypoallergenic formula are very good things. It has the same moisturizing properties and it works well as a pre makeup base, but again the byword is lighter.

In this it is also not a bad thing. My skin is what tends to be classified as ‘normal’ which I always find amusing. In reality what that means is that while my skin isn’t technically overly dry or oily, its needs are very seasonally based. In the winter when i spend time indoors with the indoor heating on, my skin dries out more so that it is normal to dry. In the summer when the weather heats up I shift to normal to oily.

In the winter the Lait Creme Concentre was perfect. However now that spring has sprung, the concentre is a bit too much for my skin. Which made spring the perfect time for the Lait-creme Sensitive. As I mentioned before it was in all ways a lighter moisturizer. In the winter I think I might have to roll in a night mask once or twice a week if I used it when my skin is the driest, however at this time of year, this moisturizer was the perfect weight.

There is of course a third cream in the Lait-creme line to try and that is the Lait Creme Fluid. I have yet to open it and give it a try but soon I will shift the Sensitive to the makeup drawer to take the place of the almost empty Lait creme concentre as my pre makeup base and I will begin testing the third in the lait Creme line. It comes in a pump bottle and I am hoping it will be the perfect summer weight moisturizer. However that I will only learn in time.

As for the Lait Creme Sensitive. I really enjoyed the hypo-allergenic formula and the ease with which it absorbed into the skin. It worked well for me and it is a moisturizer I would certainly use again.

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First use of the Embryolisse Lait Creme Sensitive

Recently Embryolisse sent to me three of the moisturizers from their Lait Creme Line. As I was familiar with the Concentre (and knew it was the most deeply moisturizing of the line) I tried it first. Not only was it a fantastic moisturizer but it has become a standard in my makeup line up as a pre makeup base.

When I moved it to my makeup drawer I rolled in this Lait Creme Sensitive into my skincare line up to try it out. (In time I will try it out as a pre makeup base as well, but for now I am sticking with using it as a moisturizer.) The tube looks nearly identical to the original Lait-creme Concentre. It has the same style of tube, the same inner seal that requires the pointy side of the cap to break through. However once you open it, you are aware that it is indeed a different cream.

The word for this Lait Creme Sensitive, is light. Especially in comparison to the original. The scent is nearly identical to the first, but much lighter and dissipates more quickly. while the white blob of cream in my hand looks the same as the white blob of cream from the original, it looks and feels just a little bit lighter as well.

When the original was dispensed and applied, it left white streaks on the skin until the cream warmed up and then melted in beautifully. This Sensitive version, does not need to warm up time. It absorbed into the skin without any white streaks whatsoever. It was highly moisturizing, but absorbed a little faster. It is also a slightly lighter moisturizer as well. For me that is a really good thing. The Original was perfect at night and great as my skin was winter dry. As the temperatures and humidity levels rise where I am, the lighter cream is a very good thing.

It isn’t all that much lighter, but just enough that it seems quite perfect for early spring time use. I suspect it will work well as a pre makeup base as well, but I haven’t tried it out yet. The key thing is that this is just like the original only lighter all around (scent, moisturizing, etc).

no white streaks

The application is the same. I find that I am using twice as much at night as I do in the day time, which isn’t unusual for me where moisturizers are concerned. I like letting the moisture sink in overnight so I often look a little like a glazed doughnut before bedtime. Over all if you like the original, but are just a little more sensitive to scents or want a slightly lower level of moisture, this is a great alternative to the original. I will be using the Lait Creme Sensitive from Embryolisse as my sole moisturizer for the next thirty days and I have high hopes that it will perform just as well as the original.

Lait-Crème Concentré

Thirty Days of Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre

It has been thirty days since I opened this Embryloisse Lait-Creme Concentre. Embryolisse was kind enough to send not only this cream to test out and review but two other creames from the Lait- Creme Line. (The other two were the Sensitive and the Fluid) I started with the Lait-Creme Concentre because it was the standard and I have used it before.

It has been around since 1950 and even though I have not been around nearly that long it was something I grew up with my mother and Grandmother both using and it was the first moisturizer i ever tried out. It had been quite some time since I tried it so I began my test of the Lair Creme line with the one I had tried before. It has been a very interesting thirty days.

I know it is a multi tasker, but we will start with the product being used as a moisturizer. A little about my skin. I have skin that falls into the moisture level of ‘normal’. I have friends with oily skin and friends with dry skin, both of whom think I am lucky. I might be but when choosing products it can be difficult. There are normal to oily products that lean heavy towards helping out those who are oily and there are normal to dry products that lean into helping out those with drier skin. They may or may not be good for me.

It actually depends on the year. My skin is very seasonal. The more time I spend inside, especially in the winter, the more I lean towards products favored by the dry skin folks. When the humidity and heat rise, I lean into the oily skin products. There are some products that I can only use at certain times of the year. In the three Products sent to me by the brand I thought this would be the most hydrating and so I chose to test it out when my skin was at it’s driest. I like to give product’s their best chance. I never actively want a product to perform badly so I do my best with timing.

So we have been in the driest section of time for my skin. I was concerned that if the weather turned it might become a bit too heavy and I would have to use it only a a night cream, but that never happened. Even though the temperatures and humidity are on the rise, I have not had an issue with this moisturizer. During the day I use half of the amount I use at night. At night it is the last thing I applied to my skin. I know it seems more logical to cover the day first but as that is where the multi tasking comes in, I am going to start at night.

So after I have finished with my cleansing and serum-ing, I apply the moisturizer. It is a white cream that is slightly thicker than a water or gel cream but not by much. It is not a cream that you dispense and say ‘Wow that is a thick cream’. It is one that needs to warm up before it absorbs in. Personally I found it easiest to just dispense it into my hand and rub my hands together to warm the cream up and then apply it to my skin. It cut down on the white cast of the cream.

The cream only leaves a white cast until it warms and then it absorbs. For a few minutes after you will have a bit of a shiny glazed look to your skin but after five minutes you can lay down without risking the moisturizer sticking your pillow case to your face like velcro. Just give it five minutes to settle in and you are good. Fresh hydrated skin in the morning.

And if you warm it in your hands there is less rubbing, plus your hands get really soft.

In the day time I generally wake up, use the facilities, put on the coffee pot and while the coffee is brewing I attend to my skincare. By the time my skincare is complete I have a pot of coffee and can begin my morning. There is generally an hour or two between the first cup of coffee and my makeup application. No one wants to see me apply makeup before the caffeine hits my system. (Or maybe they do in a train wreck sort of way.) Hence the time difference.

after first application 30 days ago

So in my morning moisture application I went through the same application process as I used at night, was less glazed looking and only used about half of the amount of moisturizer I used at night. It worked fabulously well and despite the fluctuating temperatures and humidity levels (seriously this past month started with 78 degrees, rolled into four inches of snow and then came out with tornados and wildfires). I never felt like it was too much moisture for my skin’s needs.

However Then I saw the multi tasking on the label. And recalled seeing that while the Embryolisse was created by dermatologists it was recommended by makeup artists. so I did some reading and found it used as a pre makeup base.

You know I had to try it.

now in the makeup drawer

I started out with about half of the moisturizer that I use in the morning (so a quarter of what I use at night). I applied it ten (or so) minutes before I applied my makeup (essentially, I wet my makeup sponge, applied the Lait- Creme Concentre and then gathered the rest of the makeup. If I was testing a specific eyeshadow palette I would debate my color choices, if not then I would go through the shadow selection process. Depending on the day it would either be ten to twenty minutes before i sat down to apply the makeup. (Some days picking colors takes longer and requires a scheduled meetings check).

For most days the amount used was correct. If it was humid and I was not using a usually drying foundation, then I used a little less of the Embryolisse, but not much less. (As I am now moving the tube into my makeup drawer it will be interesting to see how that progresses over the summer. I’ll have to do an end of summer update on this actually. But for right now the amount differences were negligible.)

After thirty days of use

I adore this as a makeup base. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed using it as a moisturizer and it works really well. But I ADORE it as a pre makeup base. Especially with a foundation that can be a little but drying and tended to flake a bit towards the end of the day. the added moisture underneath kept the drying foundation from drying out and flaking off. I did make sure to concentrate my application of the Embryolisse in the areas where they foundation tended to kind of dry out and flake away.

It was fantastic. It was not only great for my skin but it took a lot of howevers out of my makeup products. You know the howevers…”I love this shade, however it looks a little powdery come mid afternoon. “I love the look of this foundation, however by three o’clock in the afternoon it is flaking a little around my nose.

Using this as a pre makeup base took a lot of those howevers away. It simply provided moisture that the products could use when they thought about drying up. Like a moisture reserve for times of drought.

Like I said, I did enjoy it as a moisturizer and would happily just use it as a moisturizer, but i was surprisingly impressed with it’s use as a makeup base. After thirty days there is plenty of product left in this tube. Normally I would switch it to night time use as I opened up the Sensitive version and began trying it out and comparing it to the original. And while i will do that on the first couple of days, if nothing goes amiss, I will speedily locate this Lait Creme concentre to my makeup collection and use the rest of the tube there, ceding the moisturizer field to the next product to be testing. (Since it too is a multi tasker it will get a trial run with the pre makeup application test and I am hoping it works just as well).

After thirty days of use, I love the way my skin looks. I love the hydration level it provided. It was perfect to ride out this tumultuous weather system we have been having. It was a rockstar in the makeup bag and that is where it will live, the remaining product being used before may makeup is applied. I may have to make an effort not to use it on days I am testing out first time product uses so it isn’t giving them a helping hand, bit otherwise it is a standard for daily wear and a product I will be replacing as soon as it is empty. I am starting the trial of the Sensitive version from the Lait-creme line and I have high hopes that it will perform up to the high level this Lait Creme Concentre has set for the brand. I will also do a recap at the end of the summer to let you know how this Embryolisse performed as a makeup base through the hot, sweaty summer months. But only time will tell us that. For now, let the thirty days of Sensitive Lait-Creme commence!

Lait-Crème Concentré

Reviewing the 111Skin Y Theorem Day Cream

Anyone who has read my posts for any length of time knows that I love trying new skincare.  Because of this I often try samples to see how they perform.  I find this saves both on money and waste.  After all regardless of the price there is no point in purchasing something that you won’t use.  While samples can’t tell you the whole story, they can give you an idea of how the product will work.  They can let you know if you like the feel of it, or if you are going to have any reactions to it. 

Somewhere along the way I managed to test a sample size of the 111Skin Y Theorem Day Cream NacY2.  I’m guessing it was a subscription box, but I have no idea which one or when it arrived. I tend to put my samples in a plastic container and just reach in when I want to try something new or set up a travel bag. But one morning I did pull the sample from the container and tried it until it was gone. If memory serves it lasted a little over a week. During that week, I liked it enough that I put it on my ‘to test in a full sized version’ list. For the past six weeks or so I have actually been using the full sized version of this day cream. And I am now ready to give my thoughts on it. 

First let’s look at the official description.

The vitamin, antioxidant, and Hyaluronic Acid-infused formula plumps and revitalizes the complexion while keeping the skin feeling hydrated and nourished. This rich Day Cream works to infuse the skin with anti-ageing active ingredients whilst providing a protective barrier to shield the skin from harmful aggressors. Ideal for people who work in polluted or urban surroundings, the Y Theorem Day Cream NAC Y2 is formulated to reduce the effects of environmental aggressors.

NAC Y2: A fusion of three ingredients that all improve antioxidant levels, providing the optimum environment for collagen and elastin production and reducing the effects of environmental damage. HYALURONIC ACID: A humectant naturally occurring in our bodies that captures and retains moisture in the skin, improving hydration and causing a plumping effect. VITAMIN COMPLEX: A potent combination of Vitamin A, C, E, F and H to help repair damaged skin and protect against environmental pollution.




So let’s look at that a little deeper at a few of the top listed ingredients.  Water, I think we are all familiar with and know it needs to be in any skincare that seeks to plump the skin.  After all it is hydration that helps with the plumping and the water has to come from somewhere. It is much better coming from the cream than deeper in your skin. ISOPROPYL MYRISTATE is an emollient and it helps the skin retain moisture.

PEG-40 HYDROGENATED CASTOR OIL I actually find kind of interesting.  I’ll admit I went a little science crazy in the deep dive of this ingredient but don’t worry I’ll keep it short (and provide a link or two for those interested.  Put simply it is too large a molecule to be absorbed into the skin and so it stays on top and stops moisture from leaving.  I found that really interesting.  I’m used to sing ingredients that help lock moisture into the skin as they absorb but I never really thought about having something that doesn’t penetrate the skin preventing moisture from leaving. 

It makes sense and I am certain other moisturizers use it, I just never thought about it and I don’t think it has been a part of any other moisturizers I have broken down before.  So I found it a bit fascinating.  This is one of the best articles I found to most concisely explain it if you want more information.

CAPRYLIC / CAPRIC TRIGLYCERIDE is coconut oil mixed with a glycerin and it helps both to smooth skin and soften it. In fact most of the ingredients on this list are used to both smooth and soften skin as well as work as antioxidants.

To be honest I really like this moisturizer for a couple of different reasons.  The first is that it is a day cream.  I know this sounds a little strange, but walk with me on this one for a minute.  I know that the thought of having one cream that you can use for both day and night time use is a good plan. However I am noticing that my skin needs different things in the day time and night time.  During the day I need a moisturizer that absorbs well, doesn’t clog pores and doesn’t make me feel greasy when I work out.  So during the day I need something on the lighter end of the spectrum. 

At night, especially in the winter when we have the heater running and the air in the house becomes drier, I need a heavier cream to get me through the night. I am not opposed to putting a sleeping mask over my moisturizer, but I would really rather have a good night cream and just occasionally add a sleeping mask to my routine.

This 111Skin Y Theorem Day cream worked really well in that aspect.  It is too light for me to use during the night but was perfect for me to use during the day.  It absorbed well and I quite frankly had no real problems during my trial of the cream.  It has a light clean fragrance that fades into the background and becomes a ‘skincare’ scent rather than something you can identify by scent profile (ie. cucumber, rose and so on). So there were no scent issues.  The moisturizer absorbed well and fairly quickly.  I have been using it for the past six weeks and we have been having an unusually cold spring.

In the past week warmth has returned.  This past weekend I actually got some of my seedlings finally transferred out of the greenhouse and into the garden. As a reference point usually that is something I do the weekend after Easter where I live. As it is warming up, I find I am having more problems with the cream absorbing.  I have been having a little bit of a greasy feel to my skin which is not something that happened at all in cooler temperatures.  I have a week or two left of the 111Skin Y Theorem moisturizer left in the jar and I suspect as the temperatures increase I will find it a little more greasy.  This cream seems to be a very good moisturizer when the weather is cool, not so much when the weather turns warm. 

I could be wrong (lord knows I have been wrong many, many times before) but I suspect it has something to do with the PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor oil. According to all of the information I found, it is designed to sit on top of the skin.  In cooler weather this isn’t an issue, as the temperatures rise you can feel something sitting on the skin and for me it feels a little greasy.  Don’t get me wrong, it is not a major grease bomb, but it is noticeable to me.  I’ve had to pat my t zone with powder mid afternoon just a little bit more now that the central heating is not running.

You will notice that there are no before and after pictures with my skin and this cream. Part of that is because I accidentally deleted the photos in my grand spring purge. (I was so excited to make space on my hard drive that I simply didn’t think about what I needed to keep.) The other reason is that while this moisturizer did moisturize, any real work done on reducing fine lines I am pretty sure was done by other products. The hyaluronic acid in this moisturizer may have contributed, but serums and eye creams did the heavy lifting. This is a moisturizer and an environmental defense shield, it is not amazing at dealing with fine lines.

Over all, I do like this Day cream and I am very glad that I did try it in the full size.  I think that if I were to purchase this 111Skin Y Theorem Day cream again, I would do so knowing that it would be a moisturizer I would use in the cooler months and that I would need to pair it with some heavy duty anti-aging serums. Everything else has its season, why shouldn’t moisturizer. So in conclusion, yes I would repurchase this moisturizer, but I would be strategic as to when in the year I used it and what products I used it with so as to use it to its best advantage.

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First Impressions: A trio of Moisturizers

First impressions of Kiehl’s Calendula serum infused water cream, Shiseido Essential Energy Gel Cream and IT cosmetics Confidence in a Gel Lotion

Because it takes at least thirty days to actually see any visible effects of skin care on the skin, I’ve decided to break down sample sizes into a first impressions sort of post. While these sample sized moisturizers didn’t last long enough to show results, they did last long enough to let me know if I wanted to give the full sized version a full trial.

Today we have three moisturizers: Kiehl’s Calendula Serum Infused Water Cream, It Cosmetics Confidence in a Gel Lotion, and Shiseido Essential Energy Moisturizing Gel Cream

Let’s start with IT Cosmetics Confidence in a Gel Cream. This was the shortest of my trials as the product only lasted a little over a week.  As the name suggested it is a gel cream.  It has a light fresh scent and it absorbed well into the skin in a reasonable amount of time. During my week using this gel cream it felt like a gel cream. 

IT Cosmetics product

There was nothing wrong with it, but it didn’t wow me. There was really nothing that made it stand out over other gel creams. It was also only of use to me as a day cream.  It simply wasn’t moisturizing enough for night time use. 

This isn’t an automatic deal breaker for me as I don’t mind a separate night cream, but it is something to keep in mind. Using this, you may need to get a second night cream. Would I mind using it again? No, I wouldn’t mind at all.  Would I go out of my way to pick up a full size of the product for a full trial? No.  It was good, but not a stand out.

Next up we have the Kiehl’s Calendula Serum Infused Water Cream.  I recently tried a mask from Kiehl’s Calendula line and really enjoyed using it (the link will take you to the full review), so I had high hopes for this moisturizer.  When you open the jar, you can tell it is a water cream.  It is a much thinner consistency than the gel creams.  I don’t mind the consistency, as long as it absorbs well in a reasonable amount of time.  This water cream has a somewhat floral, yet oddly lemony scent to it. 

I rather enjoyed the scent to be honest.  In fact, it was my favorite part of the cream. While I like that this cream only needs a little to work, it does take a while to absorb into the skin. If you are in a rush in the mornings, this probably isn’t for you. It is the sort of moisturizer you put on and then leave the bathroom to attend to other things before coming back and applying your makeup.

Also despite the time it takes to absorb, on me it was only a day cream.  It wasn’t moisturizing enough to let me set aside my night creams. While I did like the scent, I think for me this was a pass.  I will certainly be returning to the Calendula Petal Infused mask, but I will not be purchasing the water cream.

And this leaves us with the Shiseido Essential energy Moisturizing Gel Cream. I have to say this is not my first time with a sample from Shiseido.  I generally like their products, but with Shiseido it always comes down to scent.  Everything I have ever tried from Shiseido is highly fragranced.

This cream is as well.  It is a lightly sweet floral scent.  While the scent is not cloyingly floral and has an almost fruity scent mixed in, it is very much present.  I happen to like the scent, but if you are thinking about picking this moisturizer up, you really need to take into account your own sensitivity to scent.  Because it is such a strong and present scent, I would recommend trying a sample before purchasing.  The floral notes are not rose based, or at least they don’t seem so to me.  They seem more in the lily family to me, with maybe a hint of plum. 

Shiseido Cream

The cream itself is a typical gel cream consistency.  The scent that is so strong in the jar fades almost immediately upon contact and the cream absorbs well and quickly into the skin.  Only a very little of the cream is needed and in fact this sample size lasted a hair over three weeks. 

I really enjoyed it on my skin.  In addition, I found that when using it I didn’t need a separate night cream every night.  I found I could use a night cream or sleeping mask twice a week and this cream the rest of the time and be perfectly hydrated.  This is a cream I am adding to my list of products to try in the full size.  I very much enjoyed my short time using it and look forwards to doing a more extensive trial with it in the future.

For now, all three containers are empty and are making their way to the empties bin. The Shiseido will definitely return, the Kiehl’s definitely won’t and the It Cosmetics is a maybe. 


Trying out the Kopari Coconut Face Cream

I started using the Kopari Coconut Face Cream back in December and I have to say this is one of the hardest reviews I’ve had to write.  I used the product for a month and then sat down to write the review. 

My mind was a blank.

I set it to the side and tried out other sample sized moisturizers while I tried to figure out what to say about it. Then I came back to it, used it a few days and sat down to write up my review, again.

But before I get into that, let’s see what it has to say for itself…

A rich facial moisturizer packed with fatty acids to help nourish, hydrate, and strengthen the skin’s protective barrier for a more youthful appearance

Locks in moisture, soothes inflammation, and protects skin from environmental stressors

Helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines, promote collagen production, and restores elasticity

Lives up to Kopari standards: Dermatologist-Tested. Non-Irritating. Non-Allergenic. Cruelty-free. Phthalate-free. Sulfate-free. Paraben-free. Safe for Sensitive Skin. Non-Comedogenic.

Water (Aqua), Cocos Nucifera (ORGANIC Coconut) Oil, Helianthus Annuus (ORGANIC Sunflower) Seed Oil, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Glycerin, Propanediol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polyglyceryl-6 Distearate, Jojoba Esters, Phenoxyethanol, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax, Behenyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Sodium Carbomer, Tocopherol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Hydrolyzed Soybean Fiber, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Extract, Chamomilla Recutita Flower/Leaf (ORGANIC Chamomile) Extract, Camellia Sinensis (ORGANIC Green Tea) Extract, Argania Spinosa Kernel (ORGANIC) Argan Oil, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Coffea Arabica (Coffee) Leaf/Seed Extract, Butter Extract, Santalum Album (Sandalwood/Iliahi) Wood Extract, Musa Sapientum (Banana) Fruit Extract, Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry) Fruit Extract, Cucumis Melo Cantalupensis (Melon) Fruit Extract, Vanilla Planifolia (Vanilla Bean) Fruit Extract, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (ORGANIC) Aloe Vera Leaf Juice

Kopari Website

Now if you look at that long list of ingredients there are quite a few good ones listed on there.  Coconut, Camomile, Green Tea and Argan oil are all quite familiar in skin care products and all quite nice to see.  I tend to prefer argan oil in my hair products than in my face products, but I don’t mind it in a moisturizer. I was somewhat excited to see the list when I first started testing out the face cream.

Then I tried it.

The Kopari Coconut Face cream isn’t bad.  If it were bad it wouldn’t be hard to talk about at all.  I’d feel bad for breaking it down, but I would be able to do it. 

the cream on the hand

Likewise if it was a good product I would be able to extol its virtues and obsess about its ingredients.

The problem is that it is neither good nor bad.  It is so very middle of the road that it is kind of hard to talk about.  It is like the skin care equivalent of a Playmobile vegetable.  You look at them and you know what it is because it looks like a three dimensional illustration of a vegetable, but it is neither good nor bad, just representational of what you could expect a vegetable to look like in real life.

That’s what this cream is.  It smells kind of like vanilla infused playdoh to be honest. But while it isn’t a scent that attracts me, it isn’t a scent I find repellant. It is a lightweight texture that is slightly thicker than a gel moisturizer, but not quite a thick cream moisturizer. It absorbs relatively quickly into the skin and it moisturizes without being greasy as long as you apply it in moderation. Too much and it just sits on the skin. I did like that it came in a tube so that I could squeeze out as much product as I needed without contaminating the rest of the product. when traveling I do prefer the moisturizer in tubes as I don’t worry about them shattering so if I were traveling that would be a plus.

massaged into the hand

I can’t tell if it protects from environmental stressors, but when I did have inflammation on my skin, it didn’t really do any soothing. My red spots stayed red.  It didn’t irritate them though.  It didn’t do any noticeable plumping to create a youthful looking texture.  It did work well as a hydrating day cream.  It wasn’t substantial enough for me to use as a night cream, but in the day it was fine.

And in the end that is all you can say about it.  It was fine. It is a moisturizer that moisturized.  It caused no damage to my skin, but it also had no real noticeable benefits beyond moisturizing.

Would I get this moisturizer again? 

No.  While it was fine, I have come to expect more from my moisturizers.  I have tried so many that have been better than this moisturizer. In all fairness I have tried many that have been much worse as well. And while I didn’t find the playdoh like scent of the product too objectionable to use, it isn’t one that I would seek out in my skincare.

Do the final review is that the Kopari Coconut Face Cream was fine, but not for me.

Trying out Skinceuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2

I know I have been hitting the sample moisturizers pretty hard lately, but once I finished this Skinceuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 Moisturizer, I shifted into opening a full sized face cream (the Marc Jacob’s Youthquake to be exact) so more full sized moisturizer reviews will be coming shortly. Plus my skin really needs to settle in with a longer moisturizer trial so I can change out some of the other products and have it remain stable.

Incidentally Lovely Skin has SkinCeuticals products on sale during the Singles Sales. In fact most products on their site (including the one I’m currently reviewing) are 22% off. It is a really good place to stock up on a variety of skin care as they offer a boat load of brands and products to choose from so you can pick up a lot of different items and just get them shipped together. I’m finding these days bundling items so that I am waiting on fewer packages is the way to go. Plus they have free 2-3 day shipping on most orders. I am a sucker for free shipping. And despite all the post office mehem, everything I have ordered from them this year has come arrived in a timely manner. Which at this point is kind of a minor miracle.

But moving on to today’s review.

This sample sized tube of the Skinceuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 Moisturizer had a little over a week’s worth of product inside. According to the website…

Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 is an anti-aging cream that contains the optimal and patented lipid ratio of 2% pure ceramides 1 and 3, 4% natural cholesterol, and 2% fatty acids, which is proven to nourish skin and correct signs of aging. This unique lipid correction cream contains the first 2:4:2 cholesterol-dominant ratio to help restore skin’s external barrier and support natural self-repair, while potently nourishing aging skin for improvement in the visible appearance of skin smoothness, laxity, pores, and overall radiance.

  • Restores essential skin lipids: ceramides, natural cholesterol, and fatty acids
  • Improves the look of skin fullness, texture, and pore appearance
  • Improves the appearance of skin evenness and overall radiance
  • Unique lipid stabilization system in a lightweight and fast-absorbing texture
  • Shortens the adjustment period to retinoids up to 1 week while reducing dryness (see Science & Proof below)
  • Paraben-, and dye-free
  • Ideal for aging, normal, and dry skin types

Ingredients: aqua/water/eau, dimethicone, hydrogenated polyisobutene, glycerin, cholesterol, c12-15 alkyl benzoate, ceramide 3, helianthus annuus seed oil unsaponifiables/sunflower seed oil unsaponifiables, bis-peg-18 methyl ether dimethyl silane, sodium polyacrylate, peg-10 dimethicone, nylon-12, lauryl peg-9 polydimethylsiloxyethyl dimethicone, dimethicone/peg-10/15 crosspolymer, phenoxyethanol, disteardimonium hectorite, hydroxyethylpiperazine ethane sulfonic acid, ammonium polyacryloyldimethyl taurate, chlorphenesin, caprylyl glycol, peg/ppg-18/18 dimethicone, propylene carbonate, disodium edta, acrylonitrile/methyl methacrylate/vinylidene chloride copolymer, adenosine, dipropylene glycol, lavandula angustifolia oil/lavender oil, rosmarinus officinalis leaf oil/rosemary leaf oil, t-butyl alcohol, mentha piperita oil/peppermint oil, sodium citrate, linalool, isobutane, ceramide eop, bht, tocopherol, limonene, d182888/1


Now I will have to say, I have no idea why cholesterol is good for your skin.  It does amuse me that it is considered good for your skin as so many people have demonized it because of heart health care.  And I can see why, I am not making fun of needing to cut down on cholesterol.  My baby doll in particular has to watch his cholesterol.  What I find amusing that what is bad for your heart is good for your skin.

I will say that I did try the moisturizer before I read through the ingredients list.  The first thing I was struck by was the scent.  I know when am I not interested in the scent?  Still, I sniffed and smelled peppermint. It isn’t like a toothpaste peppermint, it is a light peppermint scent.  It smells like I stored the cream in a bag with my mouthwash and the lids were a slight bit loose.  Dental care adjacent maybe would be the correct term for the strength of the peppermint. 

And as my moisturizer generally sits on the side of the sink next to my toothpaste, I’ll admit,I did check the cap. No leakage.  Then I checked the ingredients and found waaaaay down on the list, peppermint oil was mentioned. And the mystery was solved.  No cross contamination at all.

It is seriously a light scent though and once I knew why it was there, it was quite pleasant. It is a white cream, but there was no white cast left on the skin.  The texture is thin enough that it absorbs really quickly. It didn’t leave a greasy film on my skin and it didn’t clog my pores.  Now a week of use isn’t enough to provide any real skin care results, but I really did like the way my skin felt when using this moisturizer.  My skin was hydrated without being greasy and the peppermint scent dissipated almost instantly.

I was actually sad when this sample size ran out.  My only draw back was at night I think I would want a little bit more moisture for my skin. Not much more though.  I was only reaching for my night cream every couple of days rather than every night.  I think if you lean more towards the oily side, you could use this and not need a separate night cream, if you were more on the dry side of skin care, you might want to just use this as a day cream.

Like I said, I didn’t use it long enough to actually see any results, but I did like this cream enough that I am willing to put it on my list of products I’ve sampled that I do want to try out in a full size. This has definitely made my list for a future full size review.


Trying out Korres Nourishing Probiotic Gel Cream

As we move closer and closer to the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, I am concentrating on the sample sized products in my collection.  Not only does it clear out a lot of the sample sizes from my skin care drawer before they expire, but it lets me know which products I want to actually try a full sized version of in upcoming skin care trials.

And so I pulled the Korres Nourishing Probiotic Gel-Cream from my skin care drawer and decided to give it a shot.  According to the product page…

The ultimate hydrating, gel-cream moisturizer with protein-boosting Greek yoghurt for a plumped, healthy looking bounce to your skin that lasts all day.

The unique whipped texture of this nourishing moisturizer immediately melts into skin and unlocks time-released hydration for 48 hours without clogging pores. While clinically-proven microbiome-friendly technology provides a skin veil for your ultimate healthy glow.

Ingredients: aqua/water/eau, propanediol, glycerin, sodium acrylates copolymer, c13-15 alkane, caprylic/capric/myristic/stearic triglyceride, coco caprylate,hexyldecyl stearate, passiflora incarnata seed oil, aloe barbadensis leaf juice powder, algin,alpha-glucan oligosaccharide, ascorbic acid, behenyl alcohol, bisabolol, caprylyl glycol,cellulose gum, cetearyl alcohol, chlorella vulgaris extract, disodium phosphate, glyceryl caprylate, glyceryl polyacrylate, glyceryl stearate citrate, hydrogenated ethylhexyl olivate, hydrogenated olive oil unsaponifiables, hydrolyzed sodium hyaluronate, lactic acid,lactobacillus, laminaria digitata extract, lecithin, lonicera caprifolium (honeysuckle)flower extract, lonicera japonica (honeysuckle) flower extract, maltodextrin, maris aqua/sea water/eau de mer, menthyl lactate, microcrystalline cellulose, panthenol,pentylene glycol, phenethyl alcohol, polyacrylate crosspolymer-6, polyglyceryl-3 diisostearate, polymnia sonchifolia root juice, potassium phosphate, pullulan, saccharide isomerate, salvia hispanica seed oil, serine, sodium carboxymethyl beta-glucan, sodium hyaluronate, tetrasodium glutamate diacetate, tocopheryl acetate, trehalose, tridecane,undecane, urea, xanthan gum, yogurt, yogurt powder, zingiber officinale (ginger) root extract, benzyl alcohol, phenoxyethanol, salicylic acid, sorbic acid, parfum/fragrance.

I have been a big fan of Korres for years.  I adore their pomegranate moisturizer and have purchased it multiple times in the past. I have tried and enjoyed many of their masks including the mask from this probiotic line.  That one I actually keep refrigerated and enjoy cold on the skin. So I anticipated really enjoying this sample and adding it to the list of products I wanted to test in their full sized versions.

Alas, it is not to be.

the gel cream

While the cream is nourishing and very light weight against the skin, I think it is designed for someone with much dryer skin than I have.  While the gel cream is a light weight texture and does absorb well, I found myself reducing the amount I put on my skin with each use so that I didn’t feel greasy.  I think if you had very dry skin, this would be an excellent product.  I do not have skin that dry. It didn’t break me out or clog my pores, it was simply too hydrating.

In addition, there is the scent.  The Probiotic line is yogurt based.  Which oddly enough I like in the mask, but did not like in the moisturizer.  They smell very similar, but I think because I keep the mask cold, the scent didn’t bother me.  With the moisturizer, the scent kept making me think that milk had spoiled.  I will say that when I put the moisturizer in the fridge and then tried it, I was fine. Still overly hydrating for my skin type, but my nose didn’t pick up as much scent. I think the scent of the yogurt just made me think it was bad if it wasn’t cold. Also, while I like the mask from the probiotic line, I only use that specific mask when I know my skin needs extra moisture.  Like the Gel-cream it is very moisturizing and something that I don’t use a lot. I will use it more in the winter than I did in the summer. It is excellent on dry skin or sun damaged skin, but too moisturizing to be used routinely for me. 

The gel-cream has the same issue.

So although I love the brand and will continue to purchase other products from them (specifically everything in the Pomegranate line), the Nourishing Probiotic Gel cream is not for me.  The scent and my skin type make it one that I will pass on instead of picking up a full sized version.  It is one I will still recommend that those with dry skin check out. You might have better luck with it than I did.

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