October Empties

There were no empties in September hence no post. October (and November) are the big months!


Nuxe lip balm (15g) – Made in France
This pot lasted me a year even with nightly use, so it’s a bargain. Comes in a heavy glass pot so not that great for travel. Texture-wise, some reported granular (and consequently doubles as an exfoliator) but my pot was never gritty, the balm was always smooth to the eyes and to the touch. I read on a French community review site that it becomes gritty with time – the honey hardens and the grittiness goes away with the heat generated as you apply. So nothing to worry about really. But if you’re concerned, go to a place where there’s high volume turnover (like Citypharma haha). Or get this year’s limited edition ones to be sure.
This is a cult product everyone raves about but honestly I didn’t have any miracle ‘it happened overnight’ episode when using it. It really wasn’t as magical as everyone claims it to be. Maybe my expectations were too high after all the raves but I can’t deny that it’s a nice, solid lip balm.
Before Nuxe I was using Kiehl’s, which was decent and not half bad. I then tried Jack Black towards the end of the Nuxe pot and thought that was quite wonderful. (My ranking of these would be Jack Black, Nuxe and Kiehl’s). I wasn’t going to repurchase Nuxe with so many other balms at home BUT:
– they came out with new packaging, limited edition colours …
– since not using it I find myself missing it at times
– the matte finish is actually quite nice
I guess the bottom line is I am quite fond of it. I use this pretty much exclusively before bed and I always work whatever amount I apply into the lips. If you don’t it just sits on top and stays there til you remove it. Which some people like I guess?

Oh and this exists in stick format but in my experience, whenever there’s an option, the pot ones always perform better. Same thing for the Dr. Hauschka lip balm, which is a similar product and also gives a matte-ish finish as far as I remember.
Repurchase? Yes, even if it’s a bit over hyped.

LIERAC Sensory Exfoliant with 3 White Flowers (175ml) – Made in France
Reviewed here.
Might be a bit heavy for summer but it’s amazing during the winter months. Some particles trail behind in the shower during use, I kinda wish it would all dissolve completely.
Repurchase? Not in the near future. I still got 2 other scrubs to go through. Plus it’s quite spendy.

Origins Zero Oil (150ml) – Made in USA
Full name is Zero Oil Pore purifying toner with Saw Palmetto and Mint. It has a variety of essential oils contains denatured alcohol (third ingredient), which together with the mint gives you that slightly astringent feeling. This is actually my second bottle (you can read my thoughts on the first empty here) – my friend bought me two when I only wanted to try one. It claims to ‘reduce shine and remove excess oil’. I used this mainly in the summer, when I felt spots coming. Can’t say if it’s effective, I feel a bit meh about this even if my skin didn’t react badly to it. There are a lot of better toners out there so unless you like that tightening feeling, perhaps you should look elsewhere. Spelling it out: sensitive skin stay away.
Repurchase? Nah.

SANA Super Quick Melty Gel Liner EX in 01 Black – Made in Japan
The ‘melty’ is a newer version of the quick gel liner and I prefer the older one actually. I no longer have the original to compare the ingredient lists but the melty contains shea butter and I do feel that it is softer than the older one. Unfortunately this change in texture also means that it smudges easier on my hooded lids.
Repurchase? I bought a few at the same time so I will go through those but I’ll go back to the ‘original’ or switch to KATE if I couldn’t get my hands on those.

Heroine Volume & Curl Mascara in 01 Black (6g) – Made in Japan
You read this often here: Only Japanese mascara keeps the curl of my straight lashes.
Some western brands hold the curl, but never as well as a Japanese mascara. My lashes continue to look like they’ve just been curled even at the end of a long day. They are also harder to get off comparatively.
As for the Heroine mascara, curl-holding aside (10/10) it’s actually a rather average mascara. It doesn’t give dramatic volume and was kind of clumpy. I didn’t like the shape of the brush.
Repurchase? No.

Clarins Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner (125ml) – Made in France
This is a mild toner with AHA and has a slight floral scent. I’ve never used an AHA toner before and it pricked the skin slightly in the beginning but before long I didn’t feel anything with continued use. I used this only in the evenings.
Not sure about this one. I thought I saw a difference in the beginning but then my skin condition changed when I started Adapalene so it’s really hard to say how effective this was. I can only say that it didn’t do anything bad to my skin. IMO it’s worth looking at for someone with sensitive skin, and it will make a nice introduction to the world of AHA toners for others who want to try one without jumping straight to something like Alpha H.
Repurchase? Maybe.

Bifesta Cleansing Express Eye Makeup Remover (145ml) – Made in Japan
Bifesta is a range by Mandom Corp that focuses on cleansing and makeup removal. This eye makeup remover was voted best in the cleansing category by the Japanese cosme website in 2012.
I really enjoyed using this. It’s gentle, scentless and effortlessly takes everything off. Never stung my eyes nor gave me a bad reaction. At 6 euros a bottle this is amazing. Makes me feel stupid paying top dollar for other eye makeup removers where this one does just as good a job for a fraction of the price.
Repurchase? A big yes.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane cleanser (200ml) – Made in France
Another recurring product. This is the last bottle for a while until I finish up my POD cleansers.
Repurchase? Next year perhaps.

May Empties


*sigh* Bit late as usual. I hesitated including the stuff from this month (June) into the post and decided to do a separate one, just to see if I’ll manage to add anything with two more weeks to go. Lots of duds in May.

Kose softymo Speedy Cleansing Oil Foam (200ml) – Made in Japan
Previously reviewed here. I wanted to get this one actually:


Read a lot of good reviews on that but didn’t find it in any shops so I bought the foam one to try.
This lasted around 3-4 months, I felt like I’ve used this one up faster than the others even though it has the same amount of product in the bottle.
I didn’t really enjoy using this one because of how it stings the eyes. And just to be clear I didn’t apply it on the eye area when it’s a foam, but waited til it’s turned to an oil before doing so. I had to use a separate eye makeup remover with this product and this defeats the purpose of using an oil cleanser for me.
Repurchase? No.

Lierac Anti-Blemish Mattifying Fluid (50ml) – Made in France
On the label, my notes taken from the leaflet in brackets:
[8.5%] patent-pending SKRL3 (this re-balance, protect and moisturize)
acnacidol BG+systenol A + HA (sebum regulating and limit release of key inflammation mediators)
grafted azelaic acid + zinc (clarifying and limit release of key inflammation mediators)
with marine spring water, for blemish-prone skin, adults.
It’s hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic. Instructions are to apply morning and/or night. Promises to ‘rapidly diminish appearance of blemishes and help reduce sebum. Skin is lastingly mattified and ideally moisturized’. (more…)

April Empties

Look what I found in my drafts… I thought this has been posted. Guess not.aprempt

Sorry pics are a little dark. These are my empties for April and a glimpse into what was my skincare routine. Well as far as cleansers were concerned anyway. I’m back to using La Roche-Posay Toleriane as my cleanser and my skin seems to like it better. I should do a skin care post one of these days …

POD Liquid Detox (150ml) – Made in Australia
From the POD website:

Uses a breakthrough triple enzyme derived from papaya
Gently breaks down dead skin cells without interfering with live skin cells
Accelerates skin renewal for a younger looking complexion
Helps dramatically reduce blackheads, blemishes, hormonal bumps, and sun-damage
No sulfates means this foaming cleanser won’t dry and strip the skin or leave a greasy residue
Gentle enough to use daily

From the box:

A 3-in-1 treatment that cleanses, tones and exfoliates the skin. Dramatically reduces blackheads, blemishes and sun damage, achieving an even skin tone.

First of all, POD has folded and no longer exists. I happened to read about this product on a blog, popped over to the website to have a look-see and saw they’re closing down and was selling everything at crazy low prices. This had a RRP of AUD$60. I think I paid like AUD$7.5 per bottle *ahem* I bought 4 bottles. Crazy when you consider that I never tried it before but my reasoning was my no-frills cleanser costs the same if not more so I really have nothing to lose. So what do I think? (more…)

Lierac Sensory Exfoliant with 3 White Flowers


The Gommage Sensoriel aux 3 Fleurs Blanches is an exfoliant with 27% of sugar crystals, vanilla particles and peach kernels. On the website I found the following additional information:

A delicious gel-oil texture that transforms into a milk upon contact with damp skin for delicious, skin-smoothing and invigorating.Three white flower extracts and four precious botanical oils regenerate and soften the skin.

The active ingredients are:

Gardenia: Soothes

Jasmine: Antioxidant, Anti-inflammatory with relaxing properties

Camellia: Protects, nourishes, softens

Argan Oil: Antioxidant that protects, soothes, and softens

Hazelnut Oil: Nourishes, soothes, softens

Sweet Almond Oil: Nourishes, soothes, hydrates

Grapeseed Oil: Antioxidant that regenerates and re-texturizes


I have started using this ever since my Weleda body scrub ran out. With 175ml of product, it is slightly bigger than Weleda (150ml).

The Lierac has a floral perfume smell. I’m sure there’s a perfume out there that smells like this. I’m not thrilled with this particular scent but it’s not a deal-breaker. The first difference I notice with this body scrub is the exfoliating particles feel ‘harsher’ than the Weleda. By harsher I mean you feel the scrubbing action. The Weleda one had bigger particles and was gentler, like a massage. These particles in the Lierac are finer and they also dissolve quicker. The more you rub the faster it melts and emulsifies.

The second thing I noticed is it’s a lot more nourishing and really leaves the body feeling moisturised long after rinsing. The oils really protect and envelope the skin and I didn’t feel like I needed a body moisturiser after shower.

This product really reminded me of the times I indugled in a spa from beginng to end. It is a year-round product but I think it will really shine in the cooler months. I think everyone will enjoy this (unless you’re looking to use this in the middle of summer and you live in a humid country), it feels so luxurious. I wish there’s a scoop or something included, it’s the only beef I have if I must pick something. I’m not too familiar with the brand Lierac but will keep an eye out for other interesting products in their range to try in the future.