January 2017 empties #2

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Welcome to my next empties post for the month! I'd really hoped to sneak in three empties posts for January because the empties box is so overloaded, but looks like I won't have time so we'll have to be happy with two unless something changes.

Good news is, it's indeed been a great month for empties and I've finished a truckload of stuff, including many full-sized items that I've had open for ages. That means I've been able to get stuck into new products throughout January, which is always a good thing : )

Let's have a look.


La Mer samples

I'll keep things brief because I plan to do a separate post with more detailed reviews of the minis I've gone through recently, but just for completeness:
  • The Cleansing Gel: This was a nice product that got even better once I started using it in the shower and not just over the bathroom sink. You only need the tiniest bit because it foams unbelievably and the foam is so rich and velvety - it was just a pleasure to use because it felt so nice on the skin. 
  • The Regenerative Serum: This was my favourite of the La Mer samples I tried because it was the only one that I felt might be doing something good for my skin each time I used it. It absorbed beautifully and left my skin looking plumper and brighter, and a little went a long way so it would be better value on a price-per-use basis than the creams below.
  • Crème de la Mer (The Moisturising Cream): I didn't like this at all unfortunately - or perhaps fortunately because the stuff is so damn expensive. It's so thick and white that it feels like you're putting barrier cream on your face (like Sudocrem for nappy rash) and for this reason it didn't feel like it absorbed and it somehow left my skin feeling dry but coated at the same time. It might work as an overnight mask to seal in other products, but I personally wouldn't use it as my moisturiser because it doesn't sink into the skin like I need it to.
  • The Moisturising Soft Cream: This was better in texture than the cream above but I still had the same issues: it didn't feel like it absorbed so it left me feeling dry but with a film on my face, and it also performed better as an overnight product for the same reasons.

Would I buy any of these? No. Thank golly - my wallet couldn't handle it!


Sierra Bees Organic Lip Balms in Creme Brulee and Unflavoured

I've reviewed these here. What I liked about these products was that they're not waxy like some balms can be so they felt comfortable to wear and I wasn't aware of them once they were on. 

They kept my lips feeling moisturised (although I did need to keep applying them) and they worked better for me than many other balms I've tried of late. Plus they come in some fun flavours and, best of all, they cost 50 cents a pop! Purchase? Maybe.


Lanolips Lovely Lanolin Antibacterial Hand Cream

This came in a sub box and it's one of those products that ended up being more useful than I first thought it would be. I've reviewed it here.

If you've had kids you'll know that you're forever applying sanitiser before handling them in the first few weeks of their lives, and sanitiser can be so drying that it really changes the skin of your hands and makes it constantly thirsty for moisture. That's where this product came in: it wasn't the nicest hand cream I've used but it did save me a number of sanitiser applications and my hands thanked me for it. Purchase? Maybe.

Malin + Goetz Clarifying Clay Mask

Full review here. This came in a Mecca Beauty Loop box and I ended up quite liking it. Not only did it work well as a clarifying mask, but it also contains very fine grains that you can choose to rub gently (or roughly!) over your skin when it comes to washing the stuff off, so it doubles as an effective exfoliant. 

I don't need any more masks in my life right now but this was definitely a good one and it's extra good if you're time-poor because it does two steps in one. Worth trying. Purchase? Maybe.


Natura Siberica Softening Cream Soap

This was one of those items I bought from the chemist because it was on sale and we needed a hand wash for the bathroom, and both my husband and I ended up being quite pleased with it. I've reviewed it here.

It's nothing fancy but it lasted almost 18 months of frequent use, but it cleans well without stripping the skin because it's quite creamy and gentle, and it has a light floral scent that I liked and that wasn't overpowering. Definitely one to consider if you need a cheap hand wash and don't care if it's not special - this one's a workhorse. Repurchase? Yes, but I'd like to try something else first.

Nivea Sensitive Caring Micellar Water

Full review here. This came in a sub box and while I wasn't thrilled to see it because micellar waters have been done to death, I was ok with it because makeup remover is something I use on a daily basis so in theory this saved me a purchase.

However I reckon this might be the worst micellar water I've tried and it was only when I stopped using it and switched to something else that I realised just how bad it was. It didn't remove makeup well at all (I may as well have been wetting the cotton pad with normal water) and it didn't feel refreshing or cleansing in the slightest. Purchase? No.



Alpha-H Micro Cleanse with Glycolic Acid and Rice Bran

Full review here. If you read this blog, you'll know how much I love Alpha'H products - but unfortunately this is one of the few that doesn't wow me.

The grains aren't fine enough to really polish the skin so I don't think it's effective as an exfoliant, and on top of that I find it a bit harsh for my face so I often used it mainly on my neck and dec since those areas can tolerate a rougher scrub better than my face can. There's also something minty and irritating in it that doesn't agree with me, so it's not something I would use again. Repurchase? No.

Urban Decay All-nighter Makeup Setting Spray

This is one of those products that's been hyped up for good reason. While it's not the most effective spray when it comes to hydrating the skin (so if you're dry like me then you might need to use something hydrating underneath it), it absolutely does make your makeup last a lot longer than any other spray I've tried to date. 

While I don't need my makeup to last forever at the moment because I'm not in an office all day or going out all night, it's one to keep in mind if you find that your makeup isn't lasting as long as you'd like. Purchase? Probably, but in the future.

In sum

Well this wasn't a great bunch of empties, was it?! I didn't realise until writing this post that this just wasn't a good lot so I'm obviously glad to say goodbye to many of these products and I hope the next post contains more of the good stuff.

Do let me know if you've finished anything amazing recently - I'd love to hear.


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