The first part of this features recent empties while the bottom half is a salvaged post dated probably early 2015 😛
Fancl Mild Cleansing Oil (120ml) – Made in Japan
This is a special limited edition packaging I got at the beginning of the year. I mentioned somewhere before (oh it was the Empties Galore post) that they have a much longer shelf-life now than before. I think it used to be that unopened, you can keep them for 1 year after date of manufacture. Now it’s like 3 times longer. I don’t know that this all means because their slogan has always been no preservatives etc. I didn’t notice any change in the formula however, so who knows.
This is still my HG cleansing oil. But! I’ve noticed cleansing oils being rather similar and generally good performers once you’re at the mid to high range (price-wise). I’m using a sample of the Shiseido one and it’s also really good. The only thing is the relatively smaller size. You go through this a lot faster than others. I think this lasted me maybe 2.5 months.
Repurchase? I have one more backup.
Kotoshina Face Lotion Brightening – Green Tea (30ml) – Made in France
This deluxe sample came in as part of the Japan skincare/beauty set I got at Le Bon Marché end of 2014 (part of the Japan month. This year they did Brooklyn, I must say it was a disappointment). I’ve never heard of Kotoshina before (leads to official website, Japanese) but they are a Kyoto based company that specializes in green tea, and their products use the famous Uji green tea from the area. Skincare products are manufactured in France. The details of this lotion (in Japanese and 1 line of English on the right) is here. Housed in a glass bottle, this lotion is certified 100% organic (European) and smells quite strongly of green tea – ingredients are: water, aloe extract, glycerin, perfume, glyceryl caprylate, camellia sinensis leaf extract, camellia sinensis seed oil … and many more herbal/flower essential oils. This is a very watery lotion and I’ve used this with a cotton pad. I really enjoyed using this actually and find the scent soothing. It lingers a little after use. It did seem to brighten the skin after use. Obviously sensitive skin beware as it’s chocked full of essential oils and extracts. It’s 4200 JPY for 150ml on the website, which is about 30 euros? Not cheap then.
Ok I just found the leaflet that came with the beauty set and it seems this usually comes in a spray bottle, although you can use it on a cotton. It hydrates, protects brightens.
Repurchase? I wouldn’t mind at all but it seems to be only available in Japan?
Linequeen gel liner
I’m happy with this and the packaging is fun. It’s pretty much the same as all the other gel liner pencils I’ve liked in the past.
Repurchase? Why not?
Bioderma Créaline H2O Solution Micellaire (500ml) – Made in France
The famous micellar water, also known as Sensibio elsewhere, I think they are the same? They have a range for sensitive skin and I think that one is either blue or green packaging, not red. 500ml is a lot and took me ages to use up alternating at times with my oil cleanser. This is the last of my stock and I’m happy to take a break for now. I’ve always been happy with the cleansing power of this, it’s really efficient and convenient, especially when swatching 🙂 I have tried other brands (GWP samples that I take when travelling) and Bioderma is always the gold standard. Some are definitely better than others in cleaning. But I double cleanse (starting to sound like a broken record now) anyway as a habit so that had never been a problem, nor was my skin ever irritated because of this. I have read however that you should still rinse after use with all micellar waters, because they are essentially still a chemical agent (I’m being very brief here of course).
Repurchase? Not for a while. I’m enjoying cleansing oils now.
The Body Shop Spa Wisdom Africa Honey & Beeswax Hand and Foot Butter (124g) – Made in Thailand
Surprised to read it’s made in Thailand. It took me ages to finish since I had a few body creams opened. I started in winter and finished in summer. One thing I noticed is the change in consistency – it’s much more liquid in the hotter months, whereas I remember I had a hard time scooping the butter out in winter. Very decent product, my feet is too dry for this but it’s good for my hands. Not too greasy and lasts quite long. The jar is in plastic, and the packaging is a bit finicky for me. Super air-tight though. This product is perfumed, not of honey but sort of a nutty floral scent that conjures up image of pampering in a spa. Haha.
Repurchase? I’m not in love with this enough to buy it again.
Dexeryl Creme (250g) – Made in France
Reviewed here a long time ago. Lasted forever.
Here’s the ingredient list:
Repurchase? Nah … I prefer Aveeno.
makanai hand cream in Yuzu (50ml) – Made in Japan
See below. The scent fades quickly but is refreshing. It’s quite soft though so don’t expect a zingy zesty citrus freshness.
*beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep* *beep*
Reviews below are old empties from beginning of 2015. Unfortunately some are missing information.
makanai hand cream in Frankincense (50ml) – Made in Japan
Beautiful, beautiful handcream. Really lovely texture, silky and light yet really moisturizing at the same time. I don’t know how they do it but they use only all natural ingredients. I chose the scent because I wanted something different and it was just before Christmas so I suppose I was under the influence. I would buy these by the boxful if they’re readily available.
I discovered makanai at Le Bon Marché when they had the Japan month. I bought the hand cream and blotting paper (to be reviewed, I’m waiting for summer). You can learn more about the brand here.
SANA Super Quick Melty Gel Liner in brown – Made in Japan
This is probably called something like Milk Chocolate but I’ve thrown it out… See here for the most recent review (black version).
Kosé Softymo Speedy cleansing oil (230ml) – Made in Japan
This one never gave me blurry eyes and never stung. Emulsifies nicely and cleanses well. My top high-end cleansing oil pick would be fancl and this is my budget pick. This is like 5 euros, seriously.
Repurchase? I have! Two bottles.
Hydraluron by Indeed Labs.
My second (and last – for now) tube of this. In my experience one tube lasts 2 months with twice daily use.
Repurchase? Certainly a contender.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Riche – Made in France
Started using this during the warmer months last year but found it too heavy. This was perfect in winter, exactly what the skin needed. The packaging is their super anti-contamination thang: the product is in a bag housed inside the tube. I’ve used up something else before with a similar packaging from LRP sometime ago and didn’t know what that was about.
Like most La Roche-Posay stuff, this is scentless and without parabens. This moisturizer will leave a sheen on the skin, it doesn’t absorb completely matte. Nothing a dusting of powder couldn’t fix of course. Unless you have really dry skin I recommend this for use during winter only. This lasted me the whole season with once daily use (2 pumps).
Repurchase? Not really for my skin type.
Peter Thomas Roth Glycolic Acid 10% Toning Complex
Love this! This is a game changer. Really. It stings when you first start using it but gets better with continued use. I was hooked. One bottle lasts a long time. If you choose your skincare wisely you’ll really start noticing a difference to your skin texture.
Repurchase? Yes, it’s just too bad PTR is not in France and available channels are much more expensive than in the US.
POD Liquid Detox
Reviewed here. The design of the pump is such that once there are no more product inside, the pump ceases to work. It stays descended and you can’t push down anymore. Anyway, two more bottles to go! [as of now, I’m already using the last bottle]
Repurchase? Like the Bioderma, I need a break.
Benefit ‘They’re Real’ mascara
This seemed to work better than the sample but I’m still not impressed. It seemed to have performed better when it’s ‘fresh’, but that stage didn’t last long and quickly went downhill. I didn’t get much volume with this, it’s stronger in the lengthening and separating department and even then it’s very mediocre, especially considering its price point and brand positioning. I can get the same results with a drugstore mascara. I just don’t get the hype with this one?
Repurchase? Nein nein nein.