Armani

January Empties

Argh am so late with this but work’s been busy and I haven’t had time to take the necessary photos ūüė¶

I’m trying to empty my drawers so you’ll start seeing a lot of sample-sized products. Little bottles I saved and intended to use on short trips and holidays, but I finally admit that I just don’t travel often enough to use them all up in a reasonable amount of time.

thisworks-hair

this works revitalizing shampoo & conditioner (30ml)Made in China
General observation: product in little bottles appears to be a lot thicker than in regular packaging (for all beauty brands).

“Infused with essential oils to restore silky texture and shine”
This shampoo cleans very well, every time I rinse it off, I hear my hair squeak. The conditioner doesn’t add a lot of moisture/nourishment considering how well the shampoo works. Thus I conclude that this is a shampoo more suitable for oilier hair. I wash my hair daily and this shampoo can sometimes feel a little stripping when used over a longer period of time. It has a herbal smell. Stings the eyes terribly if the product does get into them (both me and the Man can attest to this). Like really sharp pain.
Repurchase? Nah this is not for me.

shower gels

L’Occitane Verbena Shower Gel (30ml) – Made in France
This shower gel didn’t feel any special. The smell is very fresh, I mean it’s verbena. Otherwise not much to write home about. It’s not thickened up though comes out of the bottle easily.
Repurchase? I don’t know how much this is but I don’t think it’s worth splurging for. The scent bored me quickly. (more…)

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November Empties

It’s almost Christmas so it’s about time I post the November empties before it gets embarrassingly late *ahem*. Days are dark and bleak and I’ve given up waiting for the sun for the photos.

novempties

Kiehl’s Creme de Corps (500ml) – Made in USA
This is the Kenny Scharf edition which came out in 2012 (!). Took me a almost year to use this up but then I wasn’t using this much in summer. The Creme de Corps is something I can always count on. I sway between this and Alveeno usually. CdC is richer but I like that they are both unscented.
I’m not going to buy anymore LE packaging for these kind of products (face/body care), Much as I want to it’s silly to keep this empty bottle around.
Repurchase? Yes.

Clinique Airbrush concealer – 04 Neutral Fair
This little twist-pen lasted me a looonnng time, even with daily use. I bought a new concealor as a replacement but ran back to this when I just couldn’t get it to work on me. It comes in 3 shades. Clarins’ version (the pen, not the tube which is a lot thicker in texture) is quite close and also comes in 3 shades only but is worth a look to see which is the best for you.
Repurchase? Yes, HG material!

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Soothing Protective Skincare (40m) – Made in France
Yup another tube of this.
Repurchase? Probably, when I’ve got nothing else at home or need something that I’m sure won’t irritate my skin.

La Roche-Posay Serozinc (150ml) – Made in France
Gave this product a second chance (this is a repurchase) and can confirm now that it does absolutely nothing for me.
Repurchase? No.

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Mascara (sample) – Made in France
Always a pleasure to use.
Repurchase? Yes.

POD Liquid Detox (150ml) – Made in Australia
First reported here. Not sure what’s the status with POD. I thought they are gone but somehow you can still get their products – just recently I received an email that gives 20% off here (not affiliated). The official POD website says ‘coming soon’. So who knows.

Reading what I wrote in that link I haven’t experienced any stinging this time around at all. Perhaps my skin has adapted? Has it lost its potency? I’m still not sure exactly how effective it is in delivering its promises. I still get blemishes (they are hormonal) and the ‘hormonal bumps’ while reduced, is probably due to the topical medication I’ve been using and not this cleanser. I don’t think it has ‘dramatically’ reduced those imperfections. I don’t want to write it off completely and since I have two more of these to go through I’ll keep reporting.
Repurchase? We’ll see.

Project 2 x 5 Pan Update #4

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I’ve finally hit pan!! Yes!! I accomplished this back in July actually, just before going away on a weekend. I know documented this with glee when it happened but I couldn’t for the life of me find that first picture. Anyway, the product I’ve finally hit pan on is the Sofina powder foundation, which was reviewed in depth/death here. It’s a good foundation that performs particularly well in summer. I’m still hoping I can hit pan on one of the blushes by the end of the year (it will be either the NARS or the Chanel) but they are just so resistant. Here are the most used products from where I left off last, meaning you get July to September! I’ll do October and November together.

2x5-07

Foundation
Sofina Primavista – PAN!!

Primer
Sofina Primavista Multicover Base
This really helps on those hot summer days.

Highlighter
Clarins Instant Light Complexion Perfector
Also used in June.

Clinique AIrbrush Concealer in 04 Neutral Fair
This was something I bought just before the ‘no buy’ (ha-ha) that I finally opened and used when I binned the Cargo. I thought it has visible shimmer but it actually doesn’t, and just brightens the undereye area. I really like this product.

KIKO Perfect Eyes Duo Highlighter Pencil
Great nifty product – on one end a matte beige shade to highlight just underneath the arch of the brows and the other, a shimmery champagne to highlight the inner corners of the eyes. I know I’m on no-buy but this is a really good idea and it’s cheap and I can’t resist.

Eyeliner
SANA Superquick Gel Pencilliner in EX Real Black
This is when I opened my backup and pretty much started using it every single day.

Clinique Cream Shaper in Egyptian
Still going strong.

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Project 2 x 5 Pan – Update #3

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The post you’re about to read was written 3 months (!!) ago. Somehow it was never published and was sitting there all this time. Between then and now, I’ve got a Nintendo 3DSXL (damn you Animal Crossing and Luigi) and have been kept very busy. Now that the weather is getting cooler, I’ve also started knitting again. I’ve just completed a scarf for the Man in fact! All this to say really, that I’m bummed to have neglected this blog for so long. I’ll quickly publish this old post nonetheless and write some new ones to compensate my absence.

Beginning of my intended post for June:

I’d like to address the lack of empties post for June – simply put, there were none. I thought I would have a few but they’re all going to be in the July post. I did use up (yet another) Yves Rocher shower gel. This one was the witch hazel, the Hamamelis whose delicate scent I really enjoyed. It was also very creamy and nourishing. I don’t have a photo of it because the bottle was thrown out before I had a chance to take a snap. Anyway, moving on.

Project 10 pan is still going even though (once again) I have indulged in more LE items. They were Chanel Taboo & Pygmalion Coco shine. Can you blame me?

Honestly this must be the most lenient pan project ever documented … Here are the most used products during the last 2 months:

2x5-05Foundation
Lunasol Skin Fusing Powder Foundation & RMK powder foundation
The Lunasol is the one on the left. I don’t have the name for the RMK one unfortunately. They are both ancient to be honest, purchased when my complexion was much paler. My neck is still much paler than my face and these lighter shades helped with unifying.

Once again I’m reminded of how amazing the foundations from these two companies are. Especially Lunasol – this is their first generation of their Skin Fusing powder foundation and it still blows me away. The shade I have above is OC03, and 103L for RMK. It may look like it in the picture but there is no red in the RMK, it’s just darker than the Lunasol. I’ve been carrying the RMK one in case I needed to touch up during the day.

The dip in the Lunasol happened this month. (more…)

Project 2 x 5 Pan – Update #2

First up: No pans.

Second: I should admit upfront that I’m hopeless at this and confess that I have made purchases doing the project, which defeats the purpose doesn’t it?

Having said that I must also point out that had it not been my commitment to this project and the self-imposed ‘ban’ (albeit broken) I would have caused much greater damage to my wallet with ‘unnecessary’ purchases. Because of the project, I at least kept my promise to not buy any more eyeshadows. You will not believe how many times I’ve been tempted to buy another quad or palette. The new Birds of Paradise Dior quint for example (I like the green one more) is sooo beautiful; And I almost¬†bought the smashbox photo op eye palette on Sephora because I know I like the formula and it’s a good deal.

I’ve become an expert at the pretend-shopping-cart game: Whenever a sale of 20% comes up (= tax free on the inflated prices here in France) I go on the site and fill my basket up with everything my heart desires, look at the final price, apply the coupon code, and proceed to eliminate items until I’m left with the ‘minimum’. And then further consider whether it’s worth it and if I don’t already have something similar at home. Most of the time I end up closing the window and breathing a sigh of relief, having conquered the shopping demons. I am also thankful that the Sephora website doesn’t stock everything they have in store, and Sephora itself doesn’t get every single makeup releases. The Lancome ‘In Love’ ones with Emma Watson are only available in Lancome counters, for instance.

So… to reiterate, the tally for makeup pans since January, still at 0.

However, I have the 5 skincare pans to do as well. This is good news because I have finished 3 products in March. Which means that I have only 2 products to go before my skincare pans are done. Have I bought skincare products during the project? But of course, I bought two creams (on sale). This means I’ve only got 1 pan, doesn’t it?

*sigh* ……

Despite my failures, I’m not giving up. I guess this means the project will continue indefinitely until the end of the year, and will primarily act as a reminder to restrain myself more than anything.

Lets look at the most reached for makeup products in March:

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Excess Mascara

I love the Eyes to Kill mascaras. I have finished two tubes of the original and one of the waterproof version. Just to recap, I like the regular version better. I talked about that briefly here. Naturally I’m curious about the Excess version and well, here we are!

Unfortunately I don’t have a regular version on hand to compare with at the moment but from what I remember the Excess version has a similar looking brush to the original. It’s a hair fluffier perhaps, less dense, I think? The waterproof version however has a completely different shaped brush that looks like a ‘s’ if you look at it from the tip.

So what are the differences between the Excess and the regular version?

Well one of the first things that I can think of is it’s harder for me to grab hold of my lashes with the Excess brush.¬†The brush seems just a little too big for my lashes, and when the brush is fully loaded with product, the hair just doesn’t ‘grab’ the lashes easily. I don’t¬†remember having this problem with the regular one, and it was even easier with the waterproof brush because it was shaped differently and smaller.

With the Excess brush I feel a little clumsy using the wand fresh out of the tube, hoping I won’t smear my lids with the wet formula (which I end up doing anyway, to different degrees, invariably). I am however, writing as someone with short, straight, wimpy and sparse lashes.

Results-wise though, the Excess does live up to its me for me, giving a lot more volume and thus a falsies type of look. The glossy wet black dries to a very rich, deep black.¬†Know that my lashes droop slightly with just about all mascaras (except the Bi*Ta*Ba), the Excess holds the curl well and doesn’t weigh my lashes down more than any other mascaras. It wears very well too and doesn’t flake.

I didn’t encounter any difficulty when it comes to removing this. As to the scent, I never noticed any perfume in particular except I thought it smelled something of honey. But apparently others have noticed a faint rose scent? Either way it’s nothing to be concerned about.

If you want more drama and tend to opt for volume rather than length, the Excess is an excellent mascara choice. It really darkens and thickens the lashes to the point where they look unreal.
I find both versions worth splurging for, but I have a soft spot for the regular and will probably return to that when I’m done with all the unopened mascaras I have in waiting. It’s just more goof-proof personally (eye shape, wimpy lashes and all that) and the results I get from the regular one in terms of lengthening and volumising is impressive enough for my needs.

Winter Cleaning – Winnowed products in January

I’ve been using my Armani Eyes to Kill waterproof mascara for a while now and I know it’s finally time to say goodbye even if it’s not completely empty. Such is the pain that you need to accept if you choose a high-end mascara … Anyway this brought me to consult my inventory spreadsheet and I’ve winnowed some more products out that have past their prime in terms of their shelf-life. I’m fairly lenient on expiry dates, I keep track but might not necessarily follow it to the ‘T’ (especially regarding powder products). The ones to keep an eye on are of course mascara, then cream/liquid products, particularly ones that go on and near the eyes. I don’t use much lipgloss but I would probably put those close behind, especially if it has an applicator where you go back and forth from tube to lips instead of having a squeeze tube.

Some products here are really old … I’ve put them at the bottom of the post. I haven’t been using them, just never gotten round to dumping them. Now they can all go at the same time, with dignity and remembered by this winnowing post, ha.


Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow in Shore (#35)
For about a year I was using this religiously everyday on my eyelids as a base and to even out the skin tone on my lids. It’s started to dry out and I’ve actually stopped using it for a couple of months now. There are still a lot of product left as you can see but the texture is not the same. I thought the smell has gone a bit off as well but when compared to the two other shadows I bought around the same time, they actually share the same smell. The only difference is since I rarely use those two they are still very creamy.

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