BEAUTY EMPTIES: BACK TO SCHOOL EDITION

The beauty empties series continues, this time with a selection of skincare, body care and perfume products, from new discoveries I’ve made part of my everyday routine (hello shampoo bar) to over promising products I’ll be waving goodbye to.

Herbal Essentials Radiance miracle cleanser

I really enjoyed using the gentle-enough-to-use-daily scrub from this range, however it took me a little longer to get through this cleanser. By the end of the tube I still hadn’t figured out what was so ‘miraculous’ about it. Did it do the job of cleansing skin? Yes I think so. And thanks to the Himayalan Spring Water in the formula it did so gently and without any feeling of tightness. It works but wouldn’t rank in my top five cleansers. 100ml RRP £18.00

beauty empties

Murad Time Release Blemish Cleanser

This cleanser however would make it to the top 5 list, or at the very least the top 10. A cream texture that sort of feels like a gel, gentle yet also tackles blemishes without drying skin (thanks to salicylic acid), it’s the answer to adult acne. The therapist who sold me this cleanser wasn’t exaggerating when he estimated the 200ml tube would last me a good 6 months. You don’t need to use much product to work up a decent lather and with all the chopping and changing I do between different skincare regimes it took me over a year to finish it. 200ml RRP £30.00

Elemis White brightening even tone Lotion

Ten years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed of applying a whitening product to my face. Why would I want to look paler than I already do? But the appearance of hyperpigmentation has changed all that. I’m a sucker for anything that promises a brighter even complexion, targeting dull and pigmented skin. I diligently pat the thin fluid into cleansed skin every evening, and every evening inspect my dark spots for any signs of lightening. Unfortunately I can’t say that I’ve seen any change. Brightening products typically take a few months of consistent use to produce visible results, so maybe this travel size bottle wasn’t enough, but I’m not convinced enough to invest in the full-size version. 150ml RRP £43.00 Product photographed is a travel size.

La Roche Posay Pigmentclar eye care

With the aim of keeping my skincare routine to a manageable 3 to 5 products, eye creams rarely make it in the line-up. Although I appreciate the delicate eye area deserves a gentle approach, I often end up just sweeping my moisturiser or facial oil around the eye socket. But every now and then an eye product reminds me why that type of product exists (The Ordinary’s Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG a case in point), and La Roche-Posay Pigmentclar Eye Care certainly did that. Gentle, smoothing and hydrating, I feel like I’ve given my eyes the attention they need. 15ml RRP £25.50

I Love Skin face oil

I love skin Face Oil+

It took me a little while to get into this 100% natural facial oil, and I can’t pinpoint why. I kept using it sporadically, then in earnest a few months in, with nightly applications, and finally felt a little sad when the bottle was empty. Initially this oil felt a little heavier and greasier than what I would typically go for, with nourishing oils such as rosehip, poppy, kiwi and pomegranate, but actually it left my skin feeling really soft. Definitely a product that grew on me. 20ml RRP £21.60

Earth Kind shampoo bar citrus leaf

After attending a Soil Association-organised panel discussion during Organic Beauty Week last year, I vowed to give shampoo bars a go. From a sustainability point of view they sound so virtuous: long-lasting, preservative-free, light on packaging and carbon footprint-friendly. If my entire beauty routine consisted of solid soaps my empties photos would consist of bathroom shots devoid of products. Zero waste. No trace left behind. How satisfying. I’ll admit the idea of rubbing a hard bar into my scalp didn’t initially appeal, but I can easily work up a velvety lather from this shampoo bar to effectively cleanse my hair with no feeling of dryness. My scalp is decidedly less irritated than when I use standard drugstore shampoos, and I don’t need to wash my hair any more frequently than usual. I’m converted, my next shampoo bar awaits. 50g RRP £6.95

Earth Kind shampoo bar

Nourish bergamot & cardamom shower cream

British organic skincare brand Nourish sent me this shower cream as a Christmas gift, and with the strong scent of Bergamot Essential Oil and warming Cardamom Seed Oil it suited the winter season pretty well. Certified vegan and cruelty-free, the scent is an acquired taste but it certainly provides a morning wake up. A decent seasonal product but I wouldn’t rush to buy a replacement. 300ml RRP £16.00

Caudalie Vinosculpt lift & firm body cream

While I’m careful not to use heavy creams on my blemish-prone face, for my body I’m in ‘the thicker the better’ camp. Body butters are where I’m happiest. This body cream is supposed to, as the name suggests, firm and smooth wobbly areas. I’d rather rely on regular sessions in the gym rather than a cream to deliver a firmer body, so I’ve just been enjoying this rich whipped cream as a fantastic moisturiser. And as the thick texture forces me to spend time smoothing it on, it offers my skin not only hydration but also some firm massage action. 250ml RRP £27.00

Caudalie Vinosculpt pot of cream

The Merchant of Venice Suave Petals

When it comes to fragrance, I resent smelling like everyone else. And after spending my teens and early twenties jumping from one mass market perfume to another (Ralph Lauren Romance, Flower by Kenzo amongst others, both pleasant but lacking character), I now actively avoid going for the ultimate classics or bestsellers of the moment. I currently have a mini fragrance wardrobe in the guise of The Merchant of Venice’s Murano Collection set, which features six mini sprays of widely varying and distinctive scents. Suave Petal is floral but not cloyingly or run of the mill: the combination of white rose with fruity top notes provides a welcome refreshing take on floral. 6x 5ml RRP £30.00

What beauty products have you recently finished? Please leave a comment below to let me know.

Features gifted products.

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