Monday 10 October 2016

Used, loved, repurchased

Products with partly faded packaging and a lipstick that has seen better days can only mean one thing ... this is a product empties post!

I have to admit, it's always a little strange when Youtubers and bloggers hold onto bags of empty products. From empty cans of dry shampoo to packets of make-up remover wipes, it's all essentially trash, right? However, I can see the appeal of it. An empty product generally provides for a true "tried and tested" review of the product and whether a product is worth repurchasing.

I recently found myself finishing a few beauty favourites and I am so excited to share these with you, especially considering that three of these products are key staples in my collection.

By way of disclaimer, all products featured in this post have been purchased by me. My loyalty is with the readers of this blog and so I aim to offer honest opinions at all times.

With that said, shall we get started?

BareMinerals Matte Foundation with SPF 15

Let's start with foundation.

I was introduced to BareMinerals by my good friend, Lisa, who so happens to be a brilliant make-up artist. Lisa recommended the BareMinerals foundation as a product that provides excellent coverage with a natural finish.

Although I initially purchased the BareMinerals Original formula, I found that the matte version worked a lot better on my combination skin. BareMinerals offers a diverse range of shades, which is always refreshing to see from companies as it can be difficult finding a shade to match your skin tone. I'm an NC30 in MAC foundations and the shade 'Medium Beige' from BareMinerals was a close match.

As anticipated, the foundation is great for everyday wear. It's a very light formula yet it provides enough coverage to even out your skin tone without feeling like you are caked in make-up. I wish BareMinerals was available when I first started wearing make-up, as I think beginners would really appreciate its soft air-brush finish.

I found this to be the perfect foundation for work or functions during the day. I even found myself reaching for this product on days that I worked out and preferred some coverage while still looking natural. The loose mineral powder means it does not block your pores like conventional foundations, allowing your skin to breathe without having to worry about any breakouts.

An obvious downside to mineral powders is that they can be a little messy to use. Although BareMinerals foundations include a sifter to control the amount of product you use, it's not really a product that I would travel with and I found myself having to regularly wipe down the packaging and my vanity due to fallout. Having said that, I am a little sad to say goodbye to this product. It works really well and the only thing stopping me from repurchasing this particular foundation is that I have other foundations to get through before I should even consider making a repurchase.

I suppose it makes sense to move onto concealer.

Maybelline Dream Lumi Concealer

So you know a product is much loved when the writing has completely faded off the packaging!

The Dream Lumi concealer became a quick favourite soon after I first purchased it and received compliments on my make-up. I would describe the product as a light to medium coverage concealer that is great for covering any dark circles or pigmentation. I particularly love using this concealer for brightening my under eyes and highlighting the high points of my face. It leaves your skin looking naturally bright and does not crease or wear off during the day.

I purchased the shade 'Nude' and I believe there are two other shades available in the range.

As you can see, the Dream Lumi concealer is in the form of a pen and its thin, sleek packaging makes it perfect for traveling. Earlier this year, I took a few long haul flights and this concealer was all I really needed to look refreshed upon arrival.

The Dream Lumi concealer is the first of three staple products in my make-up collection and one that I will be repurchasing for on the go.

Fun fact - prior to using the Dream Lumi concealer, I was using the Maybelline SuperStay 24HR concealer. I am currently using the last of my Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser concealer and I have the Maybelline Fit Me concealer ready for use once I finish that product. Can you tell I am a fan of Maybelline concealers?

Moving onto another staple product ...

Max Factor 2000 Calorie Mascara - Volume and Curl

I have lost track of how many tubes of the Max Factor 2000 Calories mascara I have gone through over the years. Whilst I enjoy trying out different mascaras, I find myself returning to the Max Factor 2000 Calories mascara each and every time. Even now that I've used up this tube, I still keep reaching for whatever is left of the product.

When it comes to mascara, I look for volume and pigmentation as I have naturally long, dark lashes. I prefer the look of full lashes and this mascara does an excellent job of fanning out your lashes to create that false lash effect. I love that the wand does not have a plastic brush applicator as I feel like plastic applicators simply glide over the lashes. With this wand, however, I find that the lashes get coated evenly with mascara and there is minimal, if any, clumping.

An added bonus to this product is the packaging. It feels ... expensive, if you know what I mean. The tube is sleek, sturdy and slightly heavy. It does not feel flimsy like most drugstore packaging. Instead, it reminds me of something from YSL or Dior. Impressive, no? :)

The next image kinda speaks for itself ...

Rimmel - Kate Moss Matte Finish Lipstick, '107'

What can I say? Where do I start?

I've already rushed out and repurchased another one of these lipsticks. If that's not a sign that this lipstick is a staple product, then I don't know what is!

I absolutely adore Rimmel's Kate Moss range of lipsticks and I can't recommend them enough. I own a few different shades but my favourite shade would have to be '107', a deep, dark berry red.

I would have to say this is probably my most worn lipstick and my signature red.

The formula is fantastic - really pigmented yet lightweight on the lips. Despite its matte finish, it is comfortable to wear and I did not find it particularly drying like most matte lipsticks.

The best part? I find that it doesn't budge; once it's on the lips, it's on the lips. Not on your chin, not on your teeth. Even after a three course meal. Trust me, I've been there.

Some people have hard and fast rules when it comes to red lipstick - that it's too bold for the day, it's too daring, it's a colour that should be saved for formal occasions etc. Personally, that all sounds silly and it's never stopped me from wearing this shade during the day or night, whether I am at work or not.

And just an FYI, I can't bring myself to throw out the old tube just yet. I am currently using a lip brush to use what's left of the product ... :)

Final product empty is a perfume and one that I have mixed feelings about.

Elizabeth and James - Nirvana White

I confess, I can't leave the house without perfume. Even on days that I'm rushing out the door and pressed for time, I don't skip on perfume. I like to touch up during the day and I am always looking for new scents to try.

I came across the Elizabeth and James Nirvana White perfume while waiting in the checkout line at Sephora. Does anyone else get enticed by the products placed near the checkout? It gets me every time.

For those unfamiliar, Elizabeth and James is a brand founded by Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. The Sephora website describes Nirvana White as:
... a captivating blend of delicate peony, chic muguet, and tender musk for a feminine scent with dark sophistication.

I'm not quite sure what that really means, but I can tell you that the scent is not overly floral and it has a distinct musk undertone, which I like. I particularly love that for such a delicate scent, it has a certain spice to it reminiscent of Jo Malone perfumes.

As someone that likes to touch up on perfume throughout the day, I like the travel-size rollerball version as it means you can apply the perfume subtly without bothering those around you. It's also the perfect size to throw in your handbag for reapplication during the day.

Unfortunately, I don't think this is a perfume that I will be repurchasing anytime soon. The scent just did not last on my skin. As it has a rollerball applicator, I had to apply the product directly onto my skin. I have quite sensitive skin as it is and direct application meant that it left my skin irritated and red. By the time the redness disappeared, so too did the scent. Boo. Perhaps I would have had a different result had I used a regular spray bottle.

That's it for my product empties! If you have made it this far, thank you for reading.

Let me know if you've tried any of the products mentioned above or if you've used up any products recently. I look forward to hearing from you.

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