13 Sept 2017

beauty empties: may, june, july and august & mini reviews!

For January to April's empties, please click here.


Murad Time Release Blemish Cleanser
A friend introduced me to this cleanser and it helped clear up my skin. It has an extremely faint fragrance, so perfect for those who don't like strong smells. One bottle also lasted me two years, even with daily use. It is on the pricier end so for that reason, I give it 8/10. Otherwise, it would be my perfect cleanser. I'm now using something much cheaper with no adverse symptoms (touch wood!).

Papa Bombee Whitening Honey Mask Pack
My sister bought me a few of these from her trip to Korea and I only just got round to using one here.  I did get instant brightening effects but this mask had a strong smell of honey. When that smell is right next to your nose for nigh on half an hour, it can get a bit sickly! I don't mind it but others might. I really like this mask. 7.5/10 as it does feel like there's something missing with it.

Ren Flash Hydro Boost (sample)
This sample was one I really wanted to dislike as Ren products are great but very pricey! It turned out that this was actually an amazing product. It left my skin feeling plump and healthy the next morning (I used it as an overnight mask). The fragrance was a bit too strong and I wasn't a big fan of it but the effects were worth it. I've opted not to purchase it as I'm sure there are products out there with the same active ingredients for a fraction of the price. 8.5/10 (points deducted for price and smell).

Estee Lauder Nutritious Vitality8 Night cream (samples (six of them!))
This was an average cream - no visible effect. I used the samples up for the sake of it really. The samples were also very stingy with not much in there! The Ren one before had enough for a week's use! 1/10 for this cream - pleasant to apply but did nothing.

& Herbal Essences shampoo and an Oral-B toothpaste!


VDL Lumilayer Primer (sample)
I really liked this primer! I don't use highlighter but this primer gave me a glow on my cheekbones and brow areas, even after applying foundation. 8/10

Darphin Melaperfect Skin Tone Brightening Moisture (sample)
This is a sample I absolutely detested and ceased using after one trial. Super greasy, smelt weird and the texture was thick and hard to spread. 0/10

Holy Snails El Dorado (sample)
This is a vitamin C serum and I got it as part of the sampler set. Didn't notice a difference. 1/10

Murad Oil Control Mattifier Moisturiser sample
I got this as part of a set. It is quite thick and hard to spread so I always found myself using more when compared to other creams. It's ok but I won't be re-purchasing as it isn't worth the price for me. 5/10

Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum
My sister bought me this from her trip to Korea late last year and I'm not quite sure if it even made a little bit of difference. I haven't replaced it after it ran out and my skin still seems the same. However, it was the summer and my skin doesn't usually need as much moisture... We'll have to wait until the colder months to see if this is worth a re-purchase. 6/10

Vichy Normaderm Night Detox
The thing about this cream is that it goes on easily, absorbs really quickly and seems to make my skin feel less greasy in the morning. Already re-purchased! 8/10

Revlon 3D Extreme Mascara
Smudged within an hour of application! I've yet to find a drugstore mascara that doesn't smudge on my oily under-eye area... 1/10

The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector
Despite its overwhelming medicinal smell, this is actually a really good moisturiser for very dry skin. My hands can get really dry with excessive hand washing on the wards and this cream has been good at preventing my skin from cracking and drying out. 7/10

Alpha H Absolute Eye Complex With Cucumber and Vitamin B5 (Sample x2)
These samples were HUGE. They lasted forever and I ended up using it all over my face instead. Annoyingly, I definitely noticed a difference with this. I would use it as part of my evening routine and the next day, my skin had more of a glow and was a bit brighter. Won't be purchasing as I have many products to get through before even contemplating adding to my collection. 8/10

Banila Co White Wedding Dream Cream (sample x2)
Nothing special... Didn't notice a difference with these samples. 1/10

Skin Food Fresh Apple Cream
Over-powering smell of apple and only enough in the sample for two applications. Therefore, hard to tell if it had any effect. 1/10

Skin Food Fresh Apple Essence
Again, an overwhelming smell of apple and not enough in the sample to tell if it had any positive or negative effect. 1/10

Origins VitaZing Energy Boosting Moisturiser with Mangosteen SPF15
Weird, thick, greasy cream that left a bizarre white sheen to my face. Not a fan unfortunately. 0/10

& (not pictured) Garnier Ultimate Blends shampoo and an Oral-B toothpaste.


Bumble and Bumble Thickening Shampoo and Conditioner (samples)
Not enough in the sample and just didn't do anything. 1/10

Cosrx Honey Ceramide Full Moisture Cream 
With no fragrance to this cream and the promise of ceramides, this cream was promising. And it certainly delivered. Left my skin feeling hydrated and plump without a film of grease. Very impressed - just wish it was a little bit cheaper! 8/10

Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream (sample)
Again, one of those samples where there isn't enough to fully evaluate if it had a positive or a negative effect. 1/10

Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum
This is my all time favourite perfume - it is floral and feminine but without being overbearing. It also doesn't fade towards the end of the day. Already repurchased when I passed through Duty Free earlier this year! 9.5/10

Alpha H Liquid Gold
I reviewed this in this blog post. 8.5/10

& Other Stories Body Moisturisers: Mediterranean, Fig Fiction and Moroccan Tea (samples)
My favourite out of these? The Moroccan Tea one. It smelt heavenly: floral, but not overwhelmingly so, and it just smelt like a holiday. It's a perfect lightweight moisturiser for the summer but I wouldn't recommend it for drier weather. 8/10

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Cream (sample)
This was a really thick cream which went on easily. The sample was huge and lasted forever and eventually, seeing no results on my under-eye areas, I just slathered it all over my face. The effect? Much brighter, glowing skin! This sample had a positive effect but its price just puts me right off. 5/10

NYX Matte Finishing Spray
Considering this comes in at about £5 a bottle, it is well worth the money. This one lasted me about six months of near daily use and seems to keep my make-up from fading. Already re-purchased (though currently trailing the Urban Decay All Nighter). 7.5/10

Bumble and Bumble Surf Shampoo and Conditioner (samples)
Having yet to find a Bumble and Bumble product that impresses me, this one was the same. Left my hair feeling unclean and there wasn't enough in it for my hair (which is medium in length!). 1/10

Guerlain Le Petite Robe Noire (two samples)
A feminine perfume which lasts for about half a day. Still on the lookout for the perfume that can defeat my current holy grail of Viktor and Rolf's Flowerbomb. 5/10

Papa Honey Bombee Whitening Sheet Mask (x2)
See the review in May (scroll up)!

Holiday Candy Sheet Mask
This mask had an overwhelming smell of cotton candy and didn't seem to have much effect if I'm honest. 2/10

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence
I bought this as I'm a huge fan of snail products. On Reddit, several users claimed that it helped shrink those massive red cystic spots and it genuinely did do this for me - and overnight too! Also really good for healing open sores (like those pesky paper cuts). 9.5/10

Laneige Water Bank Sleeping Mask (sample)
I took this with me on my trip to Canada and used it as the last step of my night time routine. I really liked it - my skin felt more hydrated in the morning, it had no overwhelming fragrance and a little goes a long way. Full size purchased! 8/10

Avene Cleanance K Sample

I actually have this in the full size and decided to take this travel sized bottle with me to Canada in an effort to travel light. I don't think it does anything special to my skin but it doesn't seem to harm it either. It might be one of those products where you don't notice the difference until you stop using it so only time will tell... 5/10


The Body Shop Hemp Foot Protector
They do a hand cream version of this too and if I'm honest, I can't see any difference between them. I ended up using this all over my body whenever my skin feels dry and it does a good job of adding moisture. The smell reminds me of my childhood for some reason but this won't be a cream I'll be repurchasing as it didn't seem like it did a better job than other cheaper moisturisers. 7/10

Papa Recipe Bombee Whitening Honey Mask Pack
Reviewed further up in the month of May (please scroll up!).

Boots Botanics All Bright Hydrating Day Cream SPF 15
This cream smelt lovely but it had a watery texture and a pink hue to it. Although it was watery in texture, it seemed to leave a thin film of oil on my face which wasn't particularly pleasant. 0/10

Benton Cacao Moist and Mild Cream
Reviewed here.

Nuxe RĂªve de Miel Lip Balm
Possibly the best pot lip balm I've ever used! Perfect for dry, chapped lips. I put this on before bed and I wake up with lips which are moisturised and no longer chapped. It has a slightly grainy, thick texture which I didn't mind. Already repurchased.  9.5/10

Vichy Normaderm Beautifying Anti-Blemish Care 24h Hydration (sample)
I'm not quite if this cream did anything for me if I'm honest! No obvious effect (positive or negative) so not something I'd want to repurchase at this moment in time. 3/10

Origins Renewal Serum (sample)
Again, a sample which didn't have enough in it for me to make a proper assessment. 1/10

& Oral B 3D White Pearl Glow Toothpaste

* * *

So that's it for another four months! Four more months of this challenge to go and it's quite nice to see how much I actually go through. The aim of this challenge is to prevent impulse purchases and hoarding and so far so good!

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