Bare Bones Skincare Routine – Did I Like It?

Some time last year I decided to strip my skincare routine to the very basics of washing, toning, moisturising, and occasional peeling and masking. It was not so much out of boredom/ for fun, as it was because I didn’t have the money to spend on anything extra. One could argue that skincare is not a necessity at all, aside from basic hygiene and sun protection. One would be right, but one would also be wrong.

So here are my basics.

Chapstick Hydration Lock Lip Balm

Over the years I’ve accumulated quite the collection of lip balms. I’ve been slowly going through them all, and this Chapstick was just next on the list. It certainly did not give enough moisture and protection during winter. Chapstick did OK in the spring time, and now that it’s summer, I don’t see much difference. The ‘day’ end has SPF, which is good. But I don’t feel like my lips are conditioned and soft unless I actually have this balm on my lips. There’s no comfort in between wears, so to say. I hear that’s an issue with nigh all Chapstick products. Once it’s gone, I will not buy it again.

Oriflame LoveNature Purifying Oily Skin Face Lotion

This is a basic oily skin moisturiser. I’ve been using it on and off for years. It’s no miracle worker, but unless your skin is especially dehydrated, it moisturises a decent amount. I like its light texture, and I really like its slightly medicinal herbal scent. I will buy this again, as it’s pretty much a staple.

Olay Regenerist Regenerating Eye Lifting Serum

This was a gift, and a next (and last!) one in my stash of eye creams. I have sensitive eyes, and Olay Regenerist Regenerating Eye Lifting Serum has some microglitter in it. I thought I would not be able to handle it (e.g. I couldn’t handle Avon’s Anew one), but it’s fine. This cream (serum?..) is lightly yellow in colour, but I noticed no colour correcting properties. I suppose it does diffuse the light just a bit and it moisturises a decent amount, but I noticed no effect on my fine lines.

Faberlic Botanica Face Tonic with Cornflower and Pomegranate

I was broke and I needed a face toner, and this one was free with my purchase of other things, so into my basket it went. I can’t claim this Faberlic Botanica Face Tonic does a whole lot, but it does something, so to say. I can’t skip the toning part more than two-three days in a row, as I begin to break out. Faberlic Botanica Face Tonic is, like the rest of my current routine, basic. I find it non-drying, but it’s not hydrating or particularly refreshing.

Avon True Nutra Effects Micellar Cleansing Water

I think this is the… fifth? Maybe sixth micellar water I’ve tried. Avon True Nutra Effects Micellar Cleansing Water is scentless, gentle, and fares up rather nicely to, say, the Garnier one, which is my favourite budget micellar water. I’m almost at the end of this bottle, and I already purchased a huge-arse 400 ml bottle as back-up. Good stuff.

Neutrogena The Transparent Facial Bar

I bought this recently as a replacement for my beloved Pears. Unfortunately, I don’t like it as much, though usually I am inclined to quite like Neutrogena. Neutrogena The Transparent Facial Bar has a strong perfume, which is also of a kind that I have come to associate with male-oriented cosmetics. I suppose these are the remnants of sexism in me, but yes, I’m a bit particular when it comes to scents. But that aside, Neutrogena Facial Bar is much more drying than the Pears soap I’ve been using prior to that. I’d buy a Pears bar in an instant, but unfortunately it’s not usually sold where I live. I snatched two bars on the grey market by pure chance. There’s a tiny bit left, but it doesn’t give me enough suds for a proper face wash.

Yellow Sponge Thingie

I’m pretty sure it’s not its proper name. 😀 This is a generic one I bought for like 60c per two. I like using it, but next time I’m going to pay a bit more and get a softer one from, say, Oriflame. This one is a little harsh on my skin, so I only tend to use it on my nose and my forehead.

The Grand Question: Do I Like This Routine?

You may have already guessed the answer, but… No. There are certain things that I enjoy about the basic skincare routine. It’s short, straight-forward, economical, and more or less efficient. Also, since I haven’t been experimenting with different moisturisers and cleaners that much, I’ve been getting less breakouts.

Actually, that could be the Pears soap. If you suffer from acne, do give Pears soap a go.

But I’ve also noticed that my skin isn’t as plump, and there are many signs of dehydration beneath its usual oiliness. Also, the frown line on my forehead has become much more prominent. There are, of course, other contributing factors to less plumpness and more dehydration. Three prominent ones are stress, the office AC, and the fact that I’ve aged about a year. However, my epic multi-layer skincare routine that I’ve adhered to before helped me keep the effects of those factors on my skin at relative bay. The bare bones one I’m doing now is fine, but I want more from my skincare. Step up that retinol, mate!

I’m still at an awkward point financially, so it’ll be another several months at best until I’ll be able to go back to my multilayered long-arse day and night skincare routines. I’ll still be using the basic skincare routine described above with light variations of moisturises and lip balms and toners, and once I’ve finished the Neutrogena Bar, I’m going to switch to a different face washer. Aside from that, I’ll be relying on masking for hydration and cleansing in the interim.

Regardless, it’s good to know that I could fall onto a basic skincare routine like this one and still be more or less satisfied with the appearance of my skin.

What’s your skincare routine like?

Products I’ve Used Up – September 2017

In September I restated my empties. I’ve lost count to the amount of products I finished for my #100empties challenge, but it’s been more than one hundred, of that I am sure. Felt like a fresh start – and also felt like increasing the number to 365. So, #365empties.

Here’s what I finished in September.

body respect aloe vera cleansing gel

Body Respect Aloe Vera Cleansing Gel

(That’s a bit of tobacco stuck to the pump if you’re wondering. Eww, a smoker, etc. etc.)

I bought this because my friend bought this, and I like trying new things. The scent of this was heavenly – whenever I used it, I felt like I was just pushing my face into a huge pot of apple jelly, although I cannot 100% state that this smells anything like apples. Weird, I know, just describing the sensation here. The texture was great too – it was cooling and smooth. Didn’t find it drying, and on light make-up days it cleansed well. Had trouble with silicone in my foundation and primer, though, and didn’t do well with most mascaras.

An okay product that I’m in no rush to repurchase.

dove go fresh cucumber deodorant

Dove Go Fresh Cucumber Deodorant

I bought Dove Go Fresh Cucumber deodorant thanks to a casual recommendation from a blogger I no longer even read. Since then it has become a firm staple in my routine, and I will buy it again, and again, and again. I find it a bit on the pricey side on certain months, but whenever I can, I stock up on several to always have this Dove antiperspirant around. It’s usually on a buy one get second one for half price offer in one of the local shops, so I take advantage of that.

Dove Go Fresh Cucumber is one of the only deodorant scents that I absolutely do not mind. It also never gave me any irritation whatsoever. I could shave, depilate, epilate, and do whatever the hell else to my armpits, and then apply this straight after some rough towel drying – and Dove Go Fresh Cucumber and Green Tea will help soothe the skin. It requires no drying time, but could leave some white streaks on your clothes if you dress right after, so I usually apply it before going to bed, and find there’s no need to reapply in the morning.

I will buy it as long as it is around.

faberlic bust push-up cream

Faberlic Bust Push-Up Cream

I can’t really comment on its push-up qualities, but I’m pretty sure anyone size C and up won’t see any. However, it is a decent moisturiser. Absorbs quickly, so there’s no trouble using this cream right before I dress for the day. There is perhaps a certain improvement in the overall quality of skin, but it’s no magic. Oddly smells of lemons. I’m currently going through the second tube of this, which I bought together with this one.

Might buy again when on offer, with its moisturising properties in mind.

faberlic raspberry and white chocolate body scrub

Faberlic Raspberry and White Cocolate Body Scrub

A gentle scrub with a delicious scent. This looks just like a raspberry jam would, so it’s no wonder the packaging actually has ‘inedible’ written all over it. The white chocolate scent is also present, although it’s quite high on the artificial side. Because of the jelly consistency, sometimes I found it hard to spread and massage evenly over the skin. The exfoliation is fine, but sometimes I felt like a certain area with rougher skin needed more work. Works great on the decolletage, though.

Will buy again when on offer.

not your mother's nym purifying shampoo

NYM Not Your Mother’s ‘Clean Freak’ Purifying Shampoo

NYM Not Your Mother’s products have been such a hit and miss for me! There’s no official representative here, so all I tried, I got from the grey market. So far I’ve tried two types of shampoos, a conditioner, and a UV protector. This shampoo is okay, but I wouldn’t go as far as calling it purifying – though perhaps there’s a certain meaning that I put into this word that doesn’t quite align with the brand’s philosophy of not using harsh cleaners in their products. Plus I’m very fussy when it comes to shampoos. Very fussy.

When I did not wash my hair for three days, I certainly needed a stronger product, as I could still find oily patches in my hair after washing the shampoo off. Was easy to work into hair and easy to wash off. Nice scent.

Might buy again.

beyu concealer

BeYu Light Reflecting Concealer in shade 5

The product looks full, but rest assured there’s nothing left there. I’ve used up all I could, and what remains has become dry, oxidised, and flaky. This is a good, rather heavy-duty concealer, although I found that come end of the workweek I needed two layers of BeYu Light Reflecting Concealer, especially in the inner corners of my undereye area, where it gets especially dark. Sometimes it would also accentuate all the existent and nonexistent fine lines, even if I would set it with my ever-wonderful Elf undereye setting powder.

Shade 5 is the lightest available on the local market – I honestly don’t know if BeYu makes lighter shades than that. It might as well, because 5 is rather yellow and dark for me in autumn and winter. I can work with it, but I’d rather it were lighter. While I use BeYu Light Reflecting Concealer mostly under my eyes, I found that it works fine to hide an occasional spot as well. It also works great to even out pores around my nose (though not on it, mind).

The lady at the shop touted it as a dupe for a Clarins concealer.Having never tried any Clarins products, I cannot comment. Will I buy again? I’m currently using up a hand-me-down from a friend – hers did not suit her at all. After that, I might repurchase this, because the price and the shade and the texture are one of the best I’ve encountered locally.

We’ll see.

faberlic express volume mascara

Faberlic Express Volume Mascara

Dude. I bought this at complete random, because it was on some epic offer. When I opened it, I was disappointed by the shape of the brush (tiny), and the formula felt runny and sticky. I used it once, and then forgot about it for two weeks or so. And when I tried it again, it was suddenly one of the best mascaras I’ve ever used. It doesn’t quite catch up to my (discontinued) favourite from Giordani Gold (scroll way down) or Misslyn Sexy Lashes, but two coats would give me lots of volume and drama – and even a bit of a curl! Nothing gives my lashes a curl.

I gave a tube of this to my BFF, however her review isn’t as glorious – she still finds it runny and rather useless. I then sold a tube of this to a colleague, so I’m going to ask her opinion as well.

Me, I’ll be getting another tube of this once I’m done with some other mascaras in my stash.

faberlic express volume mascara wand and brush

October is over already, and I’ve got quite a few finished products in my empties bag. I’ll put up a post about them in the next two weeks, God willing.

Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream

Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream

To be honest, until recently I’ve been fully prepared to give this Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream if not a fully negative, then a lacklustre review at best. Yeah, an eye cream. Sure, better than nothing. Meh, comes in glass, good.

But then one day I’ve been awake for more hours than it’s decent to be awake for, and my eyes were burning and feeling very heavy inside my skull. I took out my contacts, washed my face, half-arsedly applied some moisturiser, and then decided that I need to go in with an eye cream as well.

That was a very wise decision, because my eye area felt instant relief. It was a very cooling, refreshing, ever so lightly tingling (in a good, absolutely non-burning way) sensation. For a while there it didn’t hurt to blink.

Now, I can’t tell you how long the effect of Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream lasted, because I went to bed and promptly fell asleep for once.

Other things I’d like to tell you about Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream:

The packaging is cute, and the colour is nice, and I love the fact that it’s glass – but mate, it’s not convenient. I have no problems with creams in jars. Unlike many, I do not feel squeamish about possible contamination or something. It’s just that the jar of Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream is pretty small, and the glass is slippery, and it requires certain finger dexterity to maneuver the product around, especially as you reach the last few uses.

The jar will last you a long while.

Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream often appears in Oriflame catalogues with a good discount. I recommend that you wait for the discount, because the product is not worth its full price.

In short: Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream is great at cooling and moisturising the eye area. It will help fight puffiness, and I am inclined to agree with its claims to brighten the eye area, if only a little. It will not do much else, however. If fine lines are your problem, you need a heavier artillery.

That said, I’m on my second (maybe third) jar of Oriflame Optimals Seeing is Believing Eye Cream, and I plan to repurchase.

Two Bourjois Skincare Disappointments

bourjois paris cleanser and makeup remover

Spoiler alert. 😛

Some months ago a local make-up shop was running an additional discount. Hence why I ended up hastily buying three products – all of which ended up not to my liking. Granted, I read reviews and looked up swatches, but… meh.

So what is it about Bourjois facewash and Bourjois makeup remover that I did not like?

Let’s start with the facewash.

Bourjois Fresh Cleansing Gel

The scent of Bourjois Fresh Cleansing Gel is a rather typical Bourjois fare, which I really hope they will eventually update. Did you know that I gave up on their blush after three uses for the sole reason of this scent? I hear it dissipates with time – I certainly didn’t catch it in the shop on tester products, but sweet Jesus mother of GOD, do you have to use such a scent? A lot of people complain about the ‘dated’ scent of L’Oreal lipsticks. Well, Bourjois blush arguably has it much worse.

But back to the Bourjois Fresh Cleansing Gel. The scent in Bourjois cleanser is less pronounced than in the powder products. The cleanser itself is a blueish transparent gel. You don’t need a lot to cover your face. Leaves skin feeling fresh, but freshness quickly migrates into tightness. After a few uses I felt like it just zaps moisture from my face. It also left me quite red-faced. And by red-faced I don’t mean some redness around the nose after being too active with a washcloth around there or something. By red-faced, I mean genuine beetroot red, forehead, cheeks, chin, everything. It would give a very slight burning sensation as well. Both the redness and the feeling would go away quickly, but I really wasn’t in the mood to use this product any longer after that. Currently I use it to wash my hands. I tried to wash my make-up brushes with it, but it’s not suitable.

A note on the packaging: The lid on the Bourjois Fresh Cleansing Gel tube is simultaneously difficult to open (save yer nails) and hard to keep closed. Something about the plastic being easily disturbed, I gather.

Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover

I have used Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover on my entire face. It’s a bi-phase liquid that you need to shake before using. I’ve always loved these types of products, because for some three weeks in primary school I was a chemistry nerd, and some things stuck. Watching liquids separate and then mix and then separate again has a calming effect on me.

Whatever.

So yes, Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover is a transparent blueish bi-phase liquid. Though it is a non-oil, it does leave just a bit of a filmy residue in its wake. Of course, it easily goes away after all the other cleansing steps. It is okay at removing makeup. Just okay. Which is why I would really like to dispute its waterproof make-up remover claims. None of the products I currently use are waterproof, yet Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover, stated as an ideal cleanser for waterproof makeup, still has trouble with some of them.

The packaging is a plastic bottle with the classic Bourjois topper. I’ve always found these things very cute and wanted to own a bottle for the sake of that top alone. Well, it’s got both form and function – I’d wager it would be very hard to open the bottle if the ball wasn’t there. However, the plastic is still rather flimsy, and one of the links holding the topper to the rest of the packaging broke after about two weeks. I could still close the bottle, so the product wasn’t exposed.

Of the definite good things about Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover I would like to point out that it never irritated my eyes one bit. After one stares at the monitor for 16 hours whilst wearing contacts and full-face makeup, one’s eyes are bound to be just a touch sensitive, you know. However, Bourjois Express Eye Make-up Remover doesn’t add insult to injury. No pain, no tingling, no burning. For that alone I am considering repurchase. That, and the price is kind. It’s a big bottle, and it doesn’t cost a fortune, even considering the local economy. I guess I would just have to keep in mind that it might not do well with actual waterproof mascaras and eyeliners.

Any make-up removers and cleansers you swear by? Do share in the comments.

Outgoing! November 2016

Welcome! to the first ever Outgoing! post on Armour and Warpaint. It’s just an empties post, nothing revolutionary, but from now on I’ll try to keep up and do these at the end of each month. I go through so many products, it’s ridiculous. There’s really no need for me to keep a mountain of empty bottles and tubes in the living room. Especially these days.

avon-planet-spa-chest-and-neck-serums

Two AVON Planet Spa Neck and Chest Serums

AVON Planet Spa Dramatically (?) Firming Neck and Chest Serum with Colombian Coffee Extract and AVON Planet Spa Heavenly Hydration Uplifting Neck and Chest Serum with Mediterranean Olive Oil

These two are virtually the same from where I stand – there is a difference in the scent and in packaging, but here the distinguishing characteristics end for me.

Both serums are a transparent liquid. The consistency is runny, so the pump in the packaging is very handy. I needed at least two pumps to cover my neck, decolletage, and chest. Both AVON Planet Spa Neck and Chest serums spread well and absorb really quickly, leaving no sticky residue in their wake. Although I can say that they provided additional hydration and made skin very smooth to the touch, I noticed no firming and definitely no ‘uplifting’ properties whatsoever. So if you want an additional boost of hydration for your decolletage, this might be the product for you. Everything else – look elsewhere.

I believe these particular AVON Planet Spa products have been discontinued, but I’ve seen the Colombian Coffee Extract Neck and Chest serum crop up recently, so maybe there’s still some stock left.

bourjois-so-laque-11-rouge-diva

Bourjois So Laque! in Rouge Diva 11

This is a terrible horrible abominable nail polish, and you must never ever buy it. It is a complete waste of money, especially considering all the other amazing cheaper alternatives on the market. Even though it’s not a jelly, it kinda behaves like one. To get it fully opaque you’d need three coats. Three amazingly long-drying coats. Not to ruin this one until it dries fully is almost impossible – it seriously takes ages to dry. And once it’s dry, it will chip in about, I don’t know – twelve hours? I don’t know if this is the entire range or this shade in particular, but I don’t want to pay another fortune to find out.

(Though admittedly this Chanel dupe looks very attractive.)

bourjois-so-laque-rouge-diva

I have to say that I have what looks like an old range of So Laque!, so maybe with the release of the new one they updated the formula. There are many complimentary reviews out there, but for me Bourjois So Laque! behaved badly from the start.

bourjois-so-laque-rouge-diva

I painted my nails in the morning. Here it is in the afternoon.

It is worth noting that on my toes it behaved exactly the same. I found two huge chips the next day. On feet, people. Where polish goes to survive the nuclear war.

oriflame-love-nature-aloe-face-scrub

Oriflame Love Nature Hydrating Face Scrub with Aloe Vera

While it didn’t do damage to my skin, it did feel rather harsh, no matter how gently I’d press when massaging my face. In terms of exfoliation I also can’t praise it. Not the worst, but overall quite mediocre.

delia-soothing-face-toner

Delia Cosmetics Dermo System Soothing Face Toner for All Skin Types

My first skincare product from Delia. This is an okay toner. I can’t vouch for ‘soothing’, but certainly not irritating. A tiny bit on the drying side. I would be inclined to buy it again, but unfortunately its scent is too harsh for me.

gojo-shower-gel

Gojo Showerfresh Refresh! Hair and Body Gel

My father picked this up from Lord knows where. The skin on my body is very thin and sensitive, so I decided to use this as a hand soap instead. In that quality it performs well. A pleasant scent, not overly drying.

dr-sante-cucumber-series-face-cream

Dr Sante Cucumber Balance Control Face Cream

I will be writing a detailed post on Dr Sante Cucumber series eventually, so just a short note here: While this is not a bad cream by any means and I might purchase it again, it simply did not provide enough hydration for me. I am the proud owner of oily but sensitive and constantly dehydrated skin. If you’re just oily and just sensitive, then you will like this product a lot. If you need additional hydration, then this alone will not be enough.

Another thing: When in the jar, it has a pretty recognisable ‘cucumber’ scent. However, when you apply it on your face, it smells like if you’d push your face in a bag of freshly dug out beets. I have no idea why it does that. The sensation doesn’t stick, though. It’s only during the application.

viorica-cosmeplant-shampoo-for-oily-hair

Viorica Cosmeplant Anti-Dandruff Shampoo

Viorica product reviews in English will have a very small audience, but I don’t give two shits and this shampoo is getting its own post later on, because it saved my life. Rather a dramatic statement, but I’ve been going through this phase of terrible scalp irritation. It would react to everything, so in a fit of despair I just started buying every shampoo available on the local market. This one was the second or the third one I bought, and after first use the irritation was gone. Since it’s very cheap, and the list of ingredients* is very generic, I thought it was a fluke, and after a use or two decided to try another shampoo. BAM – itchy scalp again. So for a while there I could only use this to wash my hair. Gradually I was able to switch to other products, and currently use one that is less harsh on the hair shaft, but I try to keep this one in my bathroom at all times and use it a) if I feel my scalp acting up again; b) as a clarifying shampoo. I will buy it again and again, and I hope they never change the formulation. Wouldn’t mind it being a touch less aggressive, but don’t want them to fix what’s not broke. I love it so much, I’d add it to soup.

* Worth noting that it contains no colorants, parabens, silicons, and paraffin.

oriflame-nature-secrets-shower-gel

Oriflame Nature Secrets Exfoliating Shower Gel with Energising Mint and Raspberry

First things first, this stuff smells amazing. It also has some exfoliating particles, so it’s a bit of a gel-scrub. Nothing too serious, though; do not expect mega-scrubbing action. I enjoyed using it, but as I mentioned before, the skin on my body is very thin and very sensitive, and this shower gel dried it out a lot. It is a common problem for me, however, so I wouldn’t blame it on the product.

I believe Oriflame has slowly been discontinuing their Nature Secrets line, but if you love fresh scents and don’t have problem skin on your body, then go for this one. It’s very refreshing.

sto-retseptov-krasoty-hair-balm

Sto Retseptov Krasoty Hair Balm with Sea Buckthorn for Dry and Damaged Hair

‘Smoothing and regeneration’ are two of this hair conditioner’s promises. Overall a pretty generic hair conditioner, that does not however fail at its job. You just need to keep it on your hair longer – washed off immediately it doesn’t do much.

I bought it because I needed a hair conditioner and had very little money – and Sto Retseptov Krasoty is a very budget-friendly skin and hair care line. I also really liked its scent. I have this really odd relationship with sea buckthorn-scented products. I love them, but sometimes there’s the undercurrent of something sickeningly sweet.

I’m a master of recs, aren’t I?

I’d probably purchase this one again if I had little money and needed a hair balm.

oriflame-activelle-cotton-dry-antiperspirant

Oriflame Activelle Cotton-Dry Antiperspirant

I’ve written a full review of this line in a separate post, which you can read here. This is yet another finished product from the line. As mentioned in the original post, I would be buying this again when on offer.

oriflame-optimals-body-firming-lotion

Oriflame Optimals Body Firming Lotion

I will be reviewing the Oriflame Optimals Body line in a separate post, but for now I can say this: When I used this lotion on my less problematic areas (arms and legs, for example) – I felt the firming effect quite extensively. Used on the rest of my body, the effect is minimal. So if you don’t need extensive action in skin firming department, then this product will do you good. Any other case – skip.

oriflame-and-avon-mascaras

Three Mascaras – Two Oriflame, One AVON

giordani-gold-mascara-brush

Giordani Gold Luscious Volume Mascara

My favourite of the three, I am very sad that this mascara was discontinued. It gave black, long, voluminous lashes, all in one coat. When I applied two coats, it was all drama, all the time. Very sad to see it go.

oriflame-the-one-lash-resistance-brush

The One Lash Resistance Mascara

Another discontinued product I believe, but here I can certainly see why. The brush is weird, it gave little volume, it wasn’t fully black, and it would run in about… two hours? And what didn’t run, would crumble in another three. Despite these two points, The One Lash Resistance mascara was very hard to remove. Resistance indeed. However, there were two positive things about this Oriflame mascara – it separated the lashes beautifully, and it also gave great length. I’ve been complimented on the length of my lashes nearly every time I’ve used this product.

avon-big-and-false-lash-brush

AVON Big & False Lash Volume Mascara in Blackest Black

My least favourite of the three. I used it for about a week, and then let it go. If anything, it made my lashes look worse. They kept sticking out in all weird directions. Brushing through was difficult, because the formula would freeze your lashes and make them very hard to brush through. As you can deduce from that, applying more than one coat was nigh impossible. Though it’s not grey, it is certainly not ‘blackest black’. Also, it gave no volume what so ever.

I always like to give some benefit of the doubt – so perhaps my tube was faulty? Have you ever used this product? How did you like it?

shea-moisture-african-black-soap-shave-butter-creme

Shea Moisture SHAVE African Black Soap Shave Butter Creme

Unfortunately I cannot comment on the product’s scent, because the jar I had was very old and smelt a bit on the rancid side. However, it did not diminish the qualities of this product. Very similar in consistency to a body butter, it spread well and made shaving very smooth and quick. Plenty of hydrating properties here – if you are so inclined, you can easily use this as an in-shower body moisturiser. Shea Moisture is only available on the grey market here, so I don’t know if I ever encounter this product again. If I do, however, I will repurchase. Highly recommended*.

* It bears noting that I have only used this to shave various parts of my body. I have never tried using it on my face, as I have no need for that.

starlooks-lip-sugar

Starlooks Lip Sugar

Received in one of the Lip Monthly bags back when I was still subscribed. Felt pretty much like brown sugar suspended in oil, but the list of ingredients is a little more complicated than that. Overall a good non-drying lip scrub that I have at times found a bit too soft. You can definitely use this generously.

oriflame-le-hand-creams

Three Oriflame Handcreams

I’m writing a huge overview post of all the Oriflame hand creams I’ve used so far, so keep your eyes open for that. 😉 The three above are either limited edition or discontinued. P.S. I Love You was a Valentine’s Day special release, and remains my absolute favourite, especially in terms of scent. Eco Beauty came a close second – and I’d say it was more nourishing.

oriflame-nail-file

Oriflame Nail File

Perhaps an odd thing to include in an empties post, but Oriflame nail file is one of my favourites. It doesn’t damage the nail no matter what direction you file. Very gentle on the nails. However, it does a good job on gel nails as well. Keep in mind that it wouldn’t last as long – perhaps three-four uses only.