I’ve been on a low buy but then a whoops happened

For the last couple of months, I’ve been seriously making an effort not to spend money or buy anything unless I absolutely need it. The first reason for this is because I’ve been sick and had to pay for some really expensive tests and scans. Another, I have a ganglion pressing on a nerve in my wrist and I need to get it removed but I can’t afford the surgery, so I’ve been saving up for it. And lastly, I’m paying off a car. All these costs are long-term and ongoing for now. It’s hectic.

Obviously when you’re trying not to spend money, you want to buy all the things. It always happens to me. This is part of the reason why I make lists. It reminds me of how fleeting my desires are, and also lets me know which ones are more of a constant.

So, what is on my list this month?

Urban Decay All Night Travel Duo – R350
I’ve been using the All Nighter travel spray for years. And by that, I mean the same bottle with the same liquid. I go through sprays notoriously slowly and I only ever use this stuff when I have a special event (which is not often).

What makes this set different is that it includes Vitamin B3 Quick Fix prep spray (I think that’s what it is) and I’ve been wanting to give that a go for ages but I can’t bring myself to commit to a full size, considering my lax spray use. I figured since I like All Nighter, why not?

Clarins Double Serum 30ml Set – R599
This set comes with a 30ml Double Serum and deluxe samples of the Extra-firming Day and Extra-firming Night cream (both a major favourite). I’ve been wanting to try this stuff since the re-launch, but it’s out of my price range. However, at R599… So tempted.

I’ve just finished my Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate, so maybe… just maybe… But probably not.

Stila Shimmer and Glow Liquid Eyeshadow (Grace) – R350
I bought myself Boheme (a lilac shimmer kind of colour) in may for my birthday but at the same time, I had swatched Grace and fell in love with it. I ultimately chose Boheme because not only did I love the colour, I didn’t have anything in my collection in that same colour. Since then, every time I visit Woolworths, I swatch Grace.

Lamelle Recharge CE Complex – R760
This was on my birthday wishlist and I initially told myself that if I didn’t get it from my parents, I’d buy it myself. Needless to say, I never got around to it because life happened and money needs to be saved. I think I need to finish up some more skincare and then I’ll maybe put in my first Dermastore order.

Lamelle RA Cream – R760
I really want to start including retinol (or derivative) to my routine. Apparently this is a good starting point? As far as things go, this is quite low down on the list.

Dr Dermal Texture Correction Pads – R475
The Pixi 20% glycolic pads have been on my wishlist since forever, but considering I don’t actually travel outside of SA and trying to get hold of it here is near-impossible, I’ve been hunting down local alternatives.

I have used the Nip + Fab glycolic pads (both the normal and extreme versions) but this brand isn’t stocked here anymore, and they really didn’t do much for me, so I’ve been looking for something potentially stronger. These have received some amazing reviews. I’m super keen.

Sorbet Vitamin Rescue Masque – R100
I see so many people talking about this mask and having such great experiences with it, that I couldn’t help but want to try it. I have masks to use up, so I stored it away at the back of my mind until I found out it was on sale. I rushed down to my local Clicks and even tried the one near my work, but none had stock of it. I was at the Waterfront on Saturday and saw it on a shelf going for R70. Score! When I got to the till, it was rung up as R55! Sale price on top of a sale price, score! I ended up getting 2.

iPad 9.5″ 6th Generation with Apple Pencil – R4899 + R1999
Yeah. So this is where the whoops came in. I’ve been wanting an iPad for absolute years but I couldn’t justify it. One, they seemed way more expensive all those years ago and two, I had a working laptop. I still do have a working laptop (the same one) but it’s slowly but surely giving up the ghost. It doesn’t hold a charge, I have dead pixels, my keys keep coming off, it’s slow… The list goes on and I think having something that would work going forward was a motivating point.

Anyway, back then I abandoned the idea of getting one and started looking at bottom of the range Wacom tablets because I really wanted to start drawing again. Those too, were out of my range back then so I gave up on it. Until the iPad Pros were launched.

Here we were introduced to an iPad that could be used for drawing, and at the same time, the Apple Pencil was introduced. I started doing some research and sadly found that the Pencil wasn’t compatible with the older iPad models (that incidentally started popping up more frequently in sales). Alas.

Then the iPad 9.5″ 6th Generation was announced, with Apple Pencil compatibility. Cue: angel song. This thing worked on my mind constantly. I googled it. I watched videos. All my ads on FB started showing me iPads (damn you!) and finally, I couldn’t get it out of my mind.

On the weekend, I did the worst thing. I went to go check it out in store. And oh my gosh. I got my dad to check it out. Then my mother (we were all at the mall having coffee) and then later that evening, my boyfriend.

My mom knew I was going to get it. She was like “Tarryn, just buy the damn thing cos you’re just going to go back tomorrow and get it.” Well, I got it that evening when I dragged my boyfriend to go look at it (okay, didn’t drag. He was looking at getting a cellphone on clearance).

Well. So. I bought it. And the pencil. And a screen protector and cover. Man. I put all this on my credit card and now my bank account hates me and I’m feeling guilty AF!! But. It’s beautiful. And I’m going to draw tonight.

PS: I got mine at Incredible Connection because surprisingly, it was cheaper than iStore. I bought the Pencil from iStore as Incredible had run out of stock.

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May empties… The bumper edition

Wow, did I finish a lot this month. I figure it’s probably just that time of year when you’re half way through most of the products you started at the beginning of the year. Anyway, here we go!

The Body Shop Tea Tree Cool & Creamy Wash – This was one of my favourite face washes. Like my beloved Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser, it has been discontinued. So, what did I like about this product? It had a tea tree/eucalyptus zing on the skin, which was very refreshing in the morning. Being a cream cleanser, I also felt it was gentle on my skin. I never used it to remove makeup, so I can’t say if it was effective on that side of things, but it was great as a pick-me-up morning cleanse and as a second cleanse. I mostly loved how cooling it felt both during and after using it. RIP.

Estee Lauder Day Wear Matte (foil sample) – I received this with the eyeshadow I bought from the Estee Lauder website when they were having a sale (I bought Magnetic Rose, in case you’re wondering!) and I used this sample I think two times. This was not enough for me to make any sort of decision about the product, but I also have an aversion to pot moisturisers to be honest (I made an exception for the Clarins Extra-Firming Day Cream… luxury!)

The Body Shop Fuji Green Tea Body Scrub – Didn’t like this. It isn’t scrubby in the least bit. It’s mostly a gel with little beads suspended in it. I ended up using it as a body wash. The scent was… green and clean, but not my favourite.

Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Cleansing Conditioner – I really liked this range in general. I think this was supposed to be minty but there was only a hint of it. It was pleasant enough. I’d probably get it again.

Clarins Extra-Firming Day Cream – Pure luxury. I loved every moment of this, even though I hate pot moisturisers. It was thick, but not too thick for my combo skin, it was nourishing, it absorbed well, makeup went over the top of it with ease… I’d so get this again BUT only if it’s on 50% sale again. I just can’t justify its normal retail price.

Clarins Instant Concealer (Shade 01) – You will not believe how long I’ve been using this for. I’d say over a year. You need the tiniest amount. Towards the end of it, I hated this product. I felt like it needed to be set very well on my face otherwise I’d get mascara transferring onto my eyebags (great stuff) and the shades are in no way inclusive. I used 01, but I reckon if you were any lighter than me, this would not work for you. I’m about an NW20 in Mac. I think there are only 3 or 4 shades in this concealer as well, so I am guessing this doesn’t go very dark either. I won’t be repurchasing this. I’m currently finishing up a NYX concealer (which I’m also not a fan of).

Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster – I finished this up AGES ago but while I was cleaning out, I realised I hadn’t thrown it out. I received this last year May I think. I liked it when I used it. I’m not sure if I would repurchase though. I’d definitely add it to a birthday list though!

Joico K-Pak Deep Penetrating Reconstructor for Damaged Hair (50ml) – Not sure if this was a deluxe sample size or the full size – I got it a couple of years ago in a Retailbox Secret Box. This stuff smelt a bit like bananas (which I didn’t hate) and left my hair SO SOFT after using it, but I wasn’t too sure how or where to include this in my routine, as it isn’t “rich” enough to be a conditioner but it’s NOT a shampoo.

Kerastase Nutritive Bain Satin 2 Exceptional Nutrition Shampoo (30ml) – This was definitely a sample. Also something I must have received in a Retailbox Secret Box or something similar. This was alright. It was just a basic shampoo in my opinion. Wouldn’t buy this!

Benefit Dream Screen SPF 45 for Face (6ml) – This came in a Benefit tester set I bought. This sunscreen was always touted as one of the best in the beauty blogging world… at least a few years ago. I wasn’t massively impressed with it. It was a lot thicker than I thought it would be and definitely left a white cast on my face BUT it did absorb pretty well. Wouldn’t buy the full size.

Essence Happy Girls are Pretty Contour Set (I only used the contour) – Wow, this took for freaking ever to finish. Over a year, I reckon. Maybe almost 2 years. The highlight in this duo was absolutely rubbish, so I didn’t even bother trying to use it. The contour, however… I loved. I don’t think I’d call it a contour though, as it was quite red toned (completely matte though) on my skin. I used it as a bronzer. I’m now using Soap & Glory’s Solar Powder.

The Victorian Garden English Lavender Foaming Gel Face Cleanser (30ml) – My mom got this sample in one of her Faithful to Nature orders. I tried it on my face but found that it was just way too drying so I used it as a body wash. Heavy lavender scent, as expected from its name. Definitely a foaming formula! So many bubbles.

Clarins Extra-Firming Night Cream (15ml) – I received this deluxe sample with the day moisturiser. Again, I really enjoyed this product. What is up with this line? I really like the deluxe samples because everything comes in tubes. If only they put the damn full sizes in tubes too! Wouldn’t buy the full size due to its price, but I’d aim to pick up the kit that includes the full size day cream with this as an extra.

Sh’Zen Chocolate Body Scrub – I got this last year as a birthday gift. I’ve been using it sparingly throughout the year because I loved the scent and never wanted it to end. In terms of a scrub, this was crap. It was a thick cream that smelt like the most delicious warm dark chocolate, with little granules in it. The granules were too widely dispersed for it to be effective, but wow. Nourishing and lovely. I’d get this again purely for the scent but I’m pretty certain it was limited edition.

Soap & Glory Hand Food – Yum! I got this in a Soap & Glory bath set last year (I think). I liked this “pink” scent (smelt like pink to me!) and I’d use it again. Currently I’m using the Hand Chemistry hand cream.

It’s that wonderful time of the year…

Well, for me at least. May is my birthday month. I love birthdays. Not for the presents, but for the people, the food, the celebrating. It’s just really nice to be able to sit down with the people you care about, share a meal or a chat, and just have a good time. Sometimes this isn’t always easy to accomplish other days of the year cos, life.

I put wishlists together because it’s one way to document to myself what I’m wanting, and if people want to get me something, this gives them a clear idea. I love receiving other people’s wishlists – it makes life so much easier! (I love gift giving!)

So here is my little list. I only wish I didn’t have such expensive taste!

Lamelle Recharge CE Complex – R760
Leigh from Lipgloss is my life gave this a rave review and I trust her opinion big time. Have you seen her skin? When I saw her blog post, I knew I needed this!

Smashbox Always On eyeliner (colour: Fishnet) – R275
The girls from All Dolled Up always talk about this! To this day I have not found an eyeliner that stays on my water line. I hope this does. A wonderful friend bought me this and so far… I’m so impressed!

La Source Exfoliating Body Scrub – R400
La Source is one of my favourite “rich-girl” scents, and scrubs are my favourite body product. Put two together? Oh yes! To be honest, anything from this range would be super dreamy!

Lancome Monsieur Big Mascara – R360
Allana Davison has *THE most* amazing eyelashes and she loves this stuff. I’m all about the voluminous lashes, so sign me up! Also received this as a gift. I haven’t cracked it open yet!

Physicians Formula Eye Booster Eyeliner (colour: Ultra black) – R200
Can be found at Dischem. It has a brush nib. What more could you want?

Eyeshadow base – depends on the brand
So many brands do this. Wet n Wild (R129) has one, as does Smashbox (R292) and Urban Decay (R330). I’ve recently hit the end of the one I’ve been using.

Lush It’s Raining Men Shower Gel – R175/R295
I put this on my list every year because it is my absolute favourite. Dirty Springwash is another option (it’s minty). I got Springwash and It’s Raining Men! So spoilt!

Urban Decay Essential Eye Tool – R260
Seriously random as well, but this is like the only brand that I can find that has the comb AND spooley. I found tons with one or the other. I was using one by Beautique but I haven’t been able to repurchase because it’s never available at Edgars. Maybe discontinued? I use this every day.

The empties so far

April already… What a mind job! Since we’re into the fourth month of the year, I’ve obviously finished some stuff, so I thought I’d weigh in on what I thought was good and what wasn’t.

January

  • Benefit Total Moisture Facial Cream (8.9g) – I bought myself a sample kit a long time ago and this was one of the products. I found this entire line was very heavily scented – not something I appreciate in skincare. I don’t feel like my skin benefited from this moisturiser at all, and it’s definitely not something I’d buy again.
  • Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel – At the point that I finished this, I can’t remember if it was my first purchase or a repurchase, but either way, I love this stuff. I hate the idea of skincare in pots (can we just have everything packaged in an airtight pump thing?) but this stuff is magic. At least for me. It hydrates my skin, but feels lightweight and my skin felt relatively balanced when I used this. I still got oily – don’t get me wrong – but I didn’t get more oily (which is a good thing in my books!) Would definitely get this again.
  • Nip + Fab Exfoliate Glycolic Fix Serum – Like the Neutrogena, I’m not sure if this was my first or second bottle of this. Obviously, repurchasing does say that you like it, but I have some thoughts after finishing up my second bottle. First bottle… It was magic on my skin. It felt and looked clearer. Second bottle felt tackier on my skin, so I used it less. I also didn’t feel like it made such a big difference to my skin second time around. Maybe this is because I used it less often due to the stickiness OR because my skin had got used to that level of glycolic acid. Who knows. I haven’t bought this again (I got this from Superdrug, so it’s a lus to buy in South Africa).
  • The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Shower Gel – I bought 3 of these. I think this is my first complete bottle (I’m rationing myself). This is my favourite Christmas-themed scent. The other one I like is the Vanilla (but not the Vanilla Chai) but that wasn’t available this year. I bought 3 so basically, this is heaven. Felt creamy, lathered up alright and left a delicious scent on my body, that did eventually wear off (if you’re worried about that).
  • Theravine Hair Protein Cream Mask – I received this as a gift and I have to say, I really, really, REALLY liked this. I have thick curly, frizzy hair and I feel like whenever I used this, my hair felt nice and it dried really well. Would consider getting this again!
  • Benefit It’s Potent Eye Cream (3g) – Did. Not. Like. It burned my undereye area and if I got it too close to a tear duct, it would burn like hell on earth. NOPE.
  • Balm Balm Frankincense Deep Cleansing Balm – Another gift! I loved this and used it sparingly. You don’t need to use a lot (thankfully! Because the container is TINY!!!) and I would use it when I was stressed out due to its calming scent. I’d apply to dry, clean skin (too nice to waste it on removing makeup) and give myself a bit of a facial massage and then remove it with a warm washcloth.
  • Head and Shoulders Menthol Refresh – Boring, but necessary. I am on a no sulfates kick, but when money is tight, I go back to the cheapies (this being one of them), which usually means sulfates. Also, the water is so rubbish at the moment, I find that I need something hardcore to help my scalp (it gets very dry and irritated at the moment.)
  • The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask – Really liked this! It tingles and has bits of seaweed (I think?) in it. I did find that I would have to remove this before it completely dried, as it would dry my skin out a lot if I left it on too long. I have quite a few masks to get through right now, so I probably wouldn’t repurchase despite enjoying it.
  • Tresemme Instant Refresh Radiance Dry Shampoo – I’ve had this since the beginning of time. I don’t use dry shampoo very often (only when I straighten my hair or if I’m seriously desperate) so this lasted for. freaking. ever. It was okay. I liked the scent, but I feel like it wasn’t heavy duty and sometimes you just need something that gets the job done really quickly. This wasn’t it. I replaced it with Batiste. Sorry, Tresemme!

February

  • The Body Shop Tea Tree Cool & Creamy Wash – I’m gutted this has been discontinued. This is hands down my favourite morning cleanse (next to the Neutrogena one that was also discontinued. Sigh.)
  • The Body Shop Vanilla Chai Shower Gel – I got this as a Christmas gift. Not my favourite of their vanilla Christmas scents. I wouldn’t buy this next year. Bring back your original vanilla, TBS!
  • Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Night Pads Extreme – These are a repurchase BUT the last time I got this, I had the normal/non-extreme version. Honestly, I didn’t see a difference between the two, even though there is supposed to be quite a bit more glycolic in this version. Maybe my face is just too accustomed? This left a tacky layer on my skin, so I’d always have to follow up with a moisturiser to try get rid of that feeling. Won’t be getting these again. I think I may try the Loreal ones (but they’re like R400 sob.)
  • The Body Shop All-in-One Instablur Eye – No. Don’t get this.

March

  • Environ Gentle Cream Cleanser – I was looking for something new, and specially a new cream cleanser. Those are my favourite kinds. They’re usually really gentle on the skin and good for a second/morning cleanse (which is what I use them for, obviously). I walked into Wellness Warehouse and saw the Environ stand. They were having a sale on Environ products and I ummed and ahhed before walking out without buying a thing. Then I remembered a family friend is an Environ reseller, so I got hold of her, and I got it really discounted so I bought two, as you do. The only con I have with this stuff is that I go through it SO quickly. No idea why! It’s not smaller than most cream cleansers, and I don’t use more than I normally did. Very odd!
  • Lush Catastrophe Cosmetic Fresh Face Mask – I kept this for WAY longer than the date on the tub. I really really liked this. It made my skin look so much less red when I used it. I’d definitely try this again. The only thing I’m not keen on is that it needs to be kept in the fridge (and it’s limited best before date). While the fridge makes it very cooling on the skin, I share a fridge and I worry that people are fiddling with it. Sometimes I’d find it in the oddest places in the fridge, too. People!
  • Sorbet Salon Skin 3-in-1 Micellar Cleansing Water – I bought this one specifically because it had a salon pump top. I have a lot of thoughts on this product. The micellar solution itself – can’t stand it. It leaves my skin sticky and is heavily fragranced. I also found that if I didn’t have my cotton round securely pressed over the pump, the liquid would squirt in all directions. I got the hang of it, but it just means you have to be very specific about how you use the pump/cotton pad. I am considering refilling this container with something else.

That’s it for now!

December done and dusted

2018. Can you believe it? 2017 went by in a flash and was fraught with medical drama. I’m glad to see the back of it, to be honest. Things haven’t exactly started very smoothly, though. Despite everything, I am going to make my very best effort to turn this year into one of growth, persistent and consistent happiness, and a time that I can look back on and smile.

My very last empties for 2017 was hardly much to discuss, but I thought I’d include it for completeness sake. I’m not sure if I’ll be doing empties this year, but let’s see.

Noughty To the Rescue Moisture Boost Conditioner
Unlike the shampoo, I really liked this. I felt like I used quite a bit due to its consistency, but it always left my hair feeling soft and bouncy. I haven’t repurchased. I swapped over to the Theravine Hair Protein Cream Mask (now finished, sadly! This stuff was really amazing!) and now I’m using Not Your Mother’s)

Aussie Miracle Moist Shampoo
I bought this when the Noughty shampoo wasn’t working for me (I gave the Noughty to my mom, who enjoyed it). This is an old favourite. I’m now using Head and Shoulders (which is almost done. I’ll use Not Your Mother’s next).

Clarins Daily Energiser Cleansing Gel (deluxe sample/mini)
I used this when I wasn’t staying at home. I think I’ve used one of these before back when my mom was still buying Clarins moisturisers regularly. It’s nice enough but not something I’d purchase myself.

Lux Soft Caress Softening Body Wash (750ml)
This was a huge bottle! I decanted it every now and then into a more manageable sized bottle. I’d probably repurchase, but I have a lot of body washes at the moment (thanks, Christmas!) and I want to try the Lush naked range, as I would ideally like to cut down my plastic usage this year.

Not Your Mother’s Intensive Hair Unit Renewal Treatment (sachet)
This was a really nice single-use hair mask. I’d definitely consider buying more… but I feel like it doesn’t fit with my plastic goals. Maybe in emergencies only?

Clarins Supra Volume Mascara
I loved this stuff SO much (great volume, super black) BUT… big but… It smudged on me. Smudged a lot. If you ever saw me with epic panda eyes last year, you can thank this mascara. It’d be fine for a good number of hours, and then wham, suddenly I’d look like I was wearing face paint. Not a cute look. I haven’t repurchased and I probably never will (sob). I want to try Lancome’s Monsieur Big, but that’s R350 (eep).

Loreal Super Liner So Couture Eyeliner
Brush nib eyeliners are the best, and this is no different. I tend to go through these every few months and I can’t bring myself to buy the Physicians Formula version due to the price tag (over R200 I think!) but I really want to try NYX’s Epic Liner next (about R199 if you can find it, and it also has a brush nib).

 

Done in November

November. November was very long, very busy and very stressful. It’s just that time of year, I suppose. I can’t wait until I have time to just breathe, but work being work, I have no idea when that will be. Now it makes sense why I keep having work anxiety dreams – I just want a damn holiday!

As with every month, I’ve been trying to save money and not buy anything. I think I was relatively successful in November. Here’s to hoping December is just as frugal, cos damn, this is an expensive time of year!

Indola Innova Hydrate Lightweight Treatment
I got this in a Retailbox secret box. It sounded like it could have been a Moroccan Oil box (which is why I bought the secret box in the first place) but alas, it wasn’t! I was NOT a fan of this stuff. Yes, it made my hair feel moisturised but it was so thin. It came in a tub and when I scooped it out, it just fell everywhere because it was only just slightly thicker than shampoo. Actually no, it was maybe thinner now that I think about it. I had to use a shit ton of this stuff too. Nope. Wouldn’t get this again.

Softi Premium Cotton Pads
Did. Not. Like. Not as soft as the Woolworths cotton pads. The edges felt rough. If I saturated the pads too much, they didn’t hold their shape. This is a definite no.

Benefit Boi-ing Industrial Strength Concealer (shade 01)
You don’t even want to know how old this stuff is. Okay fine, it’s about 4+ years. Not even kidding. I finished every scrap of this. I really didn’t like it towards the end, probably because the consistency had changed. Otherwise, this stuff is heavy duty like the name implies. NOT to be used under the eyes – blemishes only!

Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Oil-free Toner (3ml sachet and 40ml mini)
Not the biggest fan of this. It left a tacky layer on my face, so I was forced to put moisturiser on top, and even then, sometimes that wouldn’t work. I don’t feel like it made much difference to my skin either.

Catrice Made to Stay Inside Eye Highlighter Pen
Essentially, a pinky-cream coloured eyeliner. This dried up so quickly. I used this maybe 4 or 5 times and then a few months later tried to use it again and it was rock solid. I broke off the tip hoping that it was only the exposed bit that was hard. Nope. Scribbled it for ages and freaking nothing happened. Waste of money if you don’t use something like this regularly. Bye.

Sampar Velvet Cleansing Milk
Bought this on sale at RunwaySale. I have a few opinions about Runway… But that aside, this product was nice enough. I think it smelled like roses? Not my favourite scent. I used this in the morning. Not something I’d buy again, to be honest, unless it’s going for realllllly cheap. I’m currently using an ancient back up of The Body Shop Cool and Creamy face wash (now discontinued I think *sob*).

Lush Ultrabland (45g)
I’ve used this before. Loved it then, loved it now. This needs to be removed with a face cloth because it leaves a layer on your face if you just wash off with water. I find my skin reacts nicely to this. I would use it in the evening to wash my face after removing makeup with micellar water.

Woolworths Cosmetic Cotton Rounds
Best. Will always repurchase if I can/remember. Sadly, expensive for what it is (but worth it if your skin is sensitive).

Clinique Deep Comfort Hand and Cuticle Cream
Intensely hydrating. I used this in the evenings before bed because it definitely leaves your hands greasy. I probably wouldn’t repurchase because I am a floozy (I really want to try L’occitane’s Shea range) but I wouldn’t say no to it as a gift!

Garnier Skinactive Micellar Oil-infused Cleansing Water
This stuff… I have a story about this. So, when I bought this once upon a time (about 1 or 2 bottle ago), I had just finished using the pink bottle. I liked the pink bottle but wanted to try this one because of the oil (it’s supposed to be more hydrating). So, the first bottle of this version, I liked. I loved it enough to buy it again. Then something weird started happening. It made my eyes sting, and in the morning, my eyelids would be crusty/covered in dry skin. It’s definitely this stuff because when I took a break, I had no problem. Have they changed the formula?? Either way, I can’t stand it. I finished the bottle and didn’t get another one. I ended up getting Sorbet’s version (in the pump bottle) but I intensely hate that one too. Ugh.

Here’s to hoping I have the willpower not to buy a damned thing this December. Over and out.

More things I’ve thrown out

After a pretty shit August, September wasn’t very much better when it came to finishing things up, but I think I made up for it in October. Speaking of, can you freaking believe that we are in November already? Christmas is quite literally just around the corner… Which both scares the crap out of me and makes me feel very excited.

September

  • Theravine Ultimate Eye Make-up Remover – I am actually not sure when I finished this… Was it August? Was it September? Either way, it’s gone now. I received this as a birthday gift. I liked it… but also didn’t. I found that it was very oily (obviously, as it is an oil cleanser) but not in that nice-oil kinda way and it left a film over my eyes after removing makeup. It has a spray nozzle rather than a pump, which seems handy/less messy, but the spray is quite an excitable one and I found that I got oil mist everywhere. Won’t purchase it myself but if I got it as a gift again, I’d use it, because it did the job.
  • Good Stuff Nourish & Flourish Shea Butter & Vanilla Orchid Body Wash (700ml) – Yep, this was a ginormous bottle. I decanted it every now and then into a much more manageable bottle that I used in the shower. It smelt great! When I went to repurchase, the Clicks/Dischem I went to didn’t have this line, so I ended up replacing it with another brand.
  • Dove cotton rounds – Still not my favourite. I hold a torch for the Woolworths cotton rounds but I buy these sometimes because they’re cheaper, and out of convenience (when I’m not near a Woolworths but need to restock).
  • Lush Scrubee – I went into Lush JUST TO LOOK and came out with this and Ultrabland (a repurchase). I really loved Scrubee. It’s in my favourite scent (Honey I Washed the Kids and It’s Raining Men) and it felt really moisturising and really scrubby… But didn’t last all that long. Maybe a month of every day use? I’d get this again, definitely!

October

  • Loreal Ultra Riche Intense Nourishing Mask – I love the scent, but I don’t think it was any more remarkable than other masks I have used in the past.
  • Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder (shade 52) – I liked this. It didn’t blow my socks off, but it was nice to use and lasted for freaking ever (as in the compact, not the powder on my skin. On my skin, I still got oily around the six hour mark). I have a feeling this lasted so long because it was quite densely packed. It picks up easily on a brush, though. I’m currently using a powder from The Balm.
  • The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% – If I wasn’t so broke, I’d repurchase this! I really liked it. I mostly used it at night because I found that it was quite tacky on the skin (goes away once you put a moisturiser over top). I found my skin was less blotchy (I get a lot of redness. It didn’t zap the redness, it just made the red look more even…ha) and I didn’t get very many breakouts when using this.
  • Olaplex Hair Protector No. 3 (100ml) – If only this stuff didn’t come in such a small container… and didn’t cost so much. I found that when I did use it, my hair felt smoother for longer (I get very frizzy, thanks curly hair!) People are talking about No. 2 at the moment… I need to read up and see what that’s all about. I’d also like to point out that I never got the Olaplex treatment done. I ONLY bought No. 3. I’m assuming the effects of No. 3 are better when they complement the treatment.
  • Indola Innova Hydrate Shampoo – I got this in a Retailbox secret box once upon a time. I hadn’t used it because I was on a sulfate-free kick (I kinda still am) but in an effort to use up stuff, I cracked it open. Not my favourite shampoo ever, but it was okay. It did it’s job. It’s a very no-frills-attached formula.
  • Carmex Classic Moisturising Lip Balm – The best lip balm there is. Works so well… When I remember to use it. I have really, really dry lips that are almost always chapped. This is the only stuff that helps BUT I need to use it regularly.
  • Balm Balm Rosehip Serum (30ml) – This took an age to finish! It also started smelling rancid towards the end, and honestly, that says something, cos rosehip oil doesn’t smell great to begin with. My skin loved this though. I’d definitely consider picking up the oil again, but I’ll try another brand.
  • Environ Original A Pre-cleanser – I like using an oil or makeup remover to get rid of most of my makeup before going in with another balm/oil/cream cleanser. This did the job. I don’t think the dispensing method is the best. It has one of those drip top things. Is this making sense? The oil comes out a tiny opening. To increase the flow you either have to squeeze the bottle (not always easy) or shake it while pouring (but that isn’t a good idea!) Currently, I’m finishing off a Garnier Oil-infused Micellar Water, which I used to love, but don’t love anymore.
  • Loreal Super Liner So Couture eyeliner – I think this is one of two brush nib eyeliners available at “the drugstore” in South Africa. I love this because of the brush nib. It gives me the perfect flick every time (minus human error) and it’s pretty black. I wish it was more matte, but ah well. I have a backup but I’m currently using the L.O.V Cosmetics Royaliner eyeliner (also brush nib) but I don’t like it as much.
  • Hey Gorgeous Spicy Chai and Vanilla Body Scrub Bliss – It was a friend’s birthday recently and I kinda had a “one for you and one for me” moment. I got her the Sugar Cookie scrub and I got this one. I loved it. It doesn’t beat my Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub love, but it’s good and definitely something I’d buy again (probably in a different scent though because they have such great scents!)
  • Garnier Skinactive Moisture Bomb Super-hydrating Re-balancing tissue mask – The hype hit and I had to try this. It’s just like any other sheet mask I’ve tried, but I think the fit was mostly better (except for the tiny eye holes). I have another one waiting for me.
  • Lush Christingle Body Conditioner (100g) – I finished this just in time to restock for Christmas 😉 This stuff is great if you like that minty, eucalyptus feeling on your skin. It’s so tingly! I’m adding this to my Christmas list.
  • Loreal Voluminous Carbon Black mascara – Damn, I loved this so much but you can’t buy it here and I have heard whisperings that it’s been discontinued overseas. This stuff was really black, had a sort of dry-ish formula (which I like) and really plumped up the lashes.
  • Bobbi Brown No Smudge mascara – This definitely didn’t smudge, but it wasn’t water resistant. I liked it. It provided a more natural look than what I prefer.

Here’s to a wonderful November!

All the trash. All the time.

IT HAS BEEN FOREVER. Really. Sorry about that. Life happened, but I think that may be another blog post for another time…

Predictably, a lot has ended up in the bin over the last few months. Some of it has been really good, some absolutely dreadful. So let’s get into it!

April

  • L’Oreal Professional Expert Series Delicate Colour Sulfate-free Protecting Shampoo (Sample) – I have no idea. Moving on.
  • L’Oreal Professional Expert Series Vitamino Colour Protecting Gel Masque (Sample) – Again, I can’t remember.
  • Cettua Half Moon Firming Eye Patch (1 pair) – Loved these. They’re really cooling. That reminds me, I need to try them again.
  • Kiehl’s Cilantro and Orange Pollutant Defending Masque (Sample) – Love this stuff. I really want to get a jar!
  • Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser – One of my favourite morning cleansers, which appears to have been discontinued. Sad, sad days.
  • Esse Deep Moisturiser (Sample) – I think this was a bit too rich for my skin?
  • Soap & Glory Clean on Me Shower Gel – I love this brand, and this was a great scent for the summer as it’s really fresh.
  • Marrakesh Oil Argan and Hemp Oil Therapy Hair Styling Elixir Original Scent (Sample) – Seriously loved this stuff. I got it in a Hairwarehouse order and I’m seriously considering buying this. Currently using a Hask hair oil.
  • Skin79 Super BB Cream VIP Gold (Sample x 2) – I loved this so much, I ordered a sample kit off Lookfantastic. Basically, you get 3 mini tubes (a lot more than what is in the foil sample by a long shot!) to try. It comes with the Gold, Orange and Pink versions. I’m still making up my mind which one I like more
  • Max Factor Creme Puff Blush (Nude Mauve) – Loved this. I can’t believe I finished an entire blush! I haven’t repurchased. Currently using Rimmel’s Santa Rose.
  • Freeman’s Charcoal and Black Sugar Polishing Mask (Sachet) – This was a serious winner. I was going through a really flaky skin stage and this was the only thing that worked. I ended up buying like 4 tubes of this stuff.
  • Cettua Hydrating Facial Mask – I used this after the Polishing Mask (above) and it was good. I think I still have one or two lying about.
  • Sorbet Hydrating Face Mask – This was pretty good too. These sorts of things usually form part of my self-care routine, rather than skincare routine.
  • The Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder (shade 01) – Another finished makeup product! Crazy days! This was great! I didn’t repurchase, as I’m using up an Essence “contour” powder at the moment.
  • Soap & Glory Smoothie Star Breakfast Scrub – My all-time favourite product ever. Love love love.

May

  • The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Shower Cream – I got this as a birthday present. I like it. Sometimes it seems too sweet, and other times, it seems okay. I think I finished another one of these later in the year.
  • L’Oreal Pure Riche Replenishing and Taming Conditioner – I really like this range!
  • L’Oreal Pure Riche Nourishing and Taming Shampoo – Again, I really like this stuff. It smells good and feels really moisturising.
  • Sampar H2O Emergency Sheet Mask – I really liked this. I used it during the flaky stage.
  • Caudalie Vinosource Moisturising Mattifying Fluid – I’m not sure I loved this as much as the normal Moisturing Sorbet, which is really weird as this version is more geared to my skin type than the Sorbet. I have one more tube squirreled away.
  • Lush Rub Rub Rub (330g pot) – This was great. I was gifted another big pot for my birthday.
  • Sampar Lap of Luxury Sea Salt Scrub – Not my favourite scent and it was a chore to finish. The consistency is thick, but not the good thick, and it’s gritty, but not gritty under running water.
  • Marrakesh Miracle Masque Argan and Hemp Oil Therapy Deep Conditioning Hair Cocktail Masque (Sample) – Again, I loved the scent. This product range smells heavenly. I must admit, my hair felt great after this.
  • Beauty Formulas Soothing and Nourishing Hand Mask – I get super dry hands, so this was actually really effective.

June and July

  • Bobbi Brown Instant Long-Wear Makeup Remover – I got this as a gift for Christmas and I really, really liked it. I used it sparingly because ahem, I can’t afford to buy this stuff!
  • Good Stuff Exxtra Care & Repair Cream Cleanser Pro Elastin, Vitamin E and Avocado Butter – I actually really liked this and would repurchase. I’m currently using a Sampar cream cleanser.
  • Freeman Beauty Honeydew and Chamomile Sleeping Mask (Sachet) – One of these masks seriously made my eyes burn. I think this one was okay. Maybe. Maybe it was the Lemon one… Hmm.
  • Moroccan Oil Treatment (25ml) – I really liked this but I don’t think I’d buy it for myself. This was actually a gift from a few years ago. I’m using a Hask hair oil at the moment.
  • Sorbet Hydrating Sheet Mask – Same as above
  • Skin Republic Nail + Cuticle Repair 20-minute Treatment – Liked this. It was really hydrating.
  • The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Body Wash – Yup, see, it came up again.
  • Mark Anthony Repairing Macadamia Oil Sulfate-free Deep Rescue Conditioning Treatment – I didn’t repurchase so I don’t think this was a good one for me.
  • Essence Sunkissed Bronzer Powder (shade 01) – This was nice! Really shimmery though, if that isn’t your thing. A very soft powder, nice tone.
  • Caudalie Makeup Remover Cleansing Water (30ml) – I got this in a gift set I bought years ago and finally used it up. It was actually quite effective.
  • The Body Shop Spa of the World Polynesian Monoi Radiance Oil (170ml) – This just kept on giving. Wow. I thought it would never end. Loved the scent, but it felt too oily. I’m a dry oil sorta gal.
  • Carmex Lip Balm – The one and only.
  • Cettua Half Moon Firming Eye Patch (1 pair) – It came up again!
  • Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Extra Strength Peel (5 treatments) – SO. IN LOVE. I just wish a pack of 30 wasn’t so damn expensive!

August

  • Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate (2ml) – I liked this. I used it in the morning when I was feeling really dry.
  • Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream – I have a love-hate relationship with this. I liked how light it was but it didn’t always mesh very well with my skin.

Apparently I was either lazy, or didn’t finish much in August. Whoops.

So there we go. A shit ton of products. I hope some of this was useful! Over and out.

A birthday wishlist 2017

I find birthday wishlists helpful – it gives me a real idea of what the person would like, and it gives some suggestions. A friend asked if I was posting one this year, so I thought “why not?” Some of the things on this list are like ultimate wants and aren’t available in South Africa, but hey!

Charlotte Tilbury Instant Look in a Palette Beauty Glow or Natural Beauty – 49 GBP/R840
I would do bad things for this. I’ve been eyeing the Natural Beauty one for ages but then they launched Beauty Glow and my heart (the part where the beauty obsession exists) stopped for a moment. It was love at first sight. Sjoe. Anyway, they’re both beautiful. They do have a third (Seductive Beauty) but that one isn’t for me. If I was going to order this myself, I’d probably use Aramex Global Shopper (cos I’m not sure if the Tilbs delivers to SA or not). I got Natural Beauty from a few of my friends. And oh my gosh, is it beautiful!

Foreo Luna Play Plus – R620
Ultimately, I would love a Luna Mini 2, but that’s like R2500! The Play Plus is much nicer than the Play because you can replace the battery! The Play only has like 100 uses and then you chuck it, so this is a much better bet. It is also a much cheaper way of finding out if you like the device or not. Another potential love is the Luna Go (combination skin), but again, that’s R1750. So, Play Plus it is! In the colour purple, of course!

Lush It’s Raining Men Shower Gel – R175/R295
Every year I put this on my list – and for good reason. It is seriously one of my all time favourite shower gels. I don’t buy it for myself because a medium size is R175 and a large is R295 and that really is a bit silly to spend on a shower gel – except when it’s a gift 😉 I got this from the same bunch of friends who got me the CT palette. Love this stuff!

Kiehl’s
There are so many things that I want from this brand that I thought I’d just include it all under one heading. I currently use the Midnight Recovery Concentrate and I love it. Since my skin has been going insane (so dry and flaky lately), I thought maybe the morning oil would be a good addition – Daily Reviving Concentrate (R815). I’ve also got my eye on the Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate, but that’s a bit spendy at R895. The Nightly Refining Micro-Peel Concentrate (R750) also looks good. And lastly, I have 2 masks on the list – the Cilantro & Orange Extract Pollutant Defending Masque R485) and Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque (R485).

Rose Gold Coat Hangers – R250 for 5
I know. Coat hangers. Like, what am I, a fashion blogger? But seriously though, I need new hangers, and these are adorable.

Smashbox Always On Gel Eyeliner in Fishnet – R250 (Red Square, Woolworths, Truworths Elements)
I’ve seen a few beauty bloggers talking about this black eyeliner. Apparently, you can use it on your waterline and it will not budge. I’m sad to say I’ve had a few horrible/cringy experiences where I have worn an eyeliner in my top waterline, believing the promise that it will not move… and it did… leaving me looking like a panda with a hangover. Ugh, just the thought makes me shiver.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream All Over Miracle Oil – R395 (Red Square, Woolworths, Stuttafords, Truworths Elements)
Apparently, this smells nothing like the original Eight Hour Cream… Thank god for that… Anyway, I’m running low on a body moisturiser and this is said to be the bees knees! Also got this from that same group of friends. Damn they spoiled the crap out of me!!

I have some other random ideas… Tom Ford Eye Defining Pen (probably costs the earth, so nevermind), Tom Ford Cocoa Mirage Eyeshadow Palette (well, if the eyeliner is bad, this’ll be worse), sheet masks (I love these and I’m really not picky!), Filorga Meso-Mask, Woodwick candles (they crackle!), Clarins Extra-Firming Day Cream (I’ve been through so many samples!), body scrubs (scrubbier the better!), mascara (I’m always looking for something that gives me uber volume)

I do have other ideas but yeah, maybe this will be some help, maybe it won’t. 24 days and counting 😛 Though, I’ll probably only celebrate in June with friends cos life.

In the bin this February and March

We’re almost halfway through the year. Let that sink in. It’s crazy, isn’t it? In some respects, the last two months have been l-o-n-g. I’ve spent most of my time trying to get myself into a more emotionally stable place, and that shit requires time and effort (basically, it’s hard work!) Depressing crap aside, here are some great memories:

  • My friend’s 30th birthday party (11 Feb) – That was great! She got cake pop type things from Sweet Lionheart and oh my word. I was in heaven.
  • Movies with the Jess! (21 Feb) – We went to see the new 50 Shades movie (no shame) and it was actually better than the first one. Less cringey. Yay for get-togethers 🙂
  • Dinner with ex-colleagues (8 Mar) – I love catch-ups and this was much needed. We went for sushi at Salushi’s. It was my first time there and wow, was it good. A bit pricey, though.
  • Jess’ 30th! We went to this wonderful place called Kloof Street House and then went for drinks afterwards. It was great.
  • Went to Peregrine Farm Stall with the mister for our 4 year anniversary on 21 March. God, was it hot. So hot. Like 40-something. I felt like I was dying. He felt like he was dying. But the food was yummy.
  • Catch-up dinner with friends (25 Mar) at IYO Burgers. Yoh. The food was good. The company was better. So need to do this socialising thing more often!

Now, onto the stuff I’ve finished…

February

  • Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Oil-free Cleanser (2 samples) – This smelled weird. I won’t be buying the full size.
  • Lush Mask of Magnaminty Self-Preserving (125g) – I really, really liked this. It’s minty as the name suggests (which I really like… It makes my skin tingle) and has bits in it that exfoliate the skin. I’m just a little sad that towards the end (maybe the last centimetre of product), it got pretty hard and unusable. I’d buy this again! I really want to get Cup O Coffee too, but first, I need to finish up a few things.
  • Theravine Crushed Pinotage Honey and Lime Buff (50ml) – This smelled like sweeties and was super scrubby. The jar is a bit shit as it is quite small and narrows at the neck, which makes digging out the product a lot harder than it should be. I can’t find this product on the Theravine website except for in a kit (which was sold out) so I probably can’t repurchase this, alas.
  • Tony Moly I’m Real Avocado Nutrition Sheet Mask – This was pretty moisturising but like most of the Tony Moly sheet masks, it leaves my skin feeling sticky afterwards. I normally suck it up and put some moisturiser over top (which helps) because my skin always feels nice the next morning.
  • Loreal Miss Hippie Mascara – I loved this from beginning to end. I didn’t repurchase it, though. I got the Clarins Supra mascara instead (which is AMAZING… but it does flake sometimes).
  • BeautyBlender – RIP. I was washing it gently and it just…ripped. What. I got this last year April (I think) so it wasn’t even that old. I have some serious opinions about this sponge. Maybe I’ll write about it some time. I didn’t get another one.
  • BeautyBlender Solid – I got this along with the BeautyBlender. It did the job. Previously I was using baby shampoo but I’ve realised that a solid soap is muchhhh easier to work with. I used this to clean my BeautyBlender (when it tore, I can confidently say the inside was clean!), my Real Techniques sponge and my brushes. I replaced this with a Lottie London solid brush soap (which is fantastic, and cheaper).
  • MAC Paint Pot in Painterly – I have been using this solidly for like 2+ years and I finally scraped the last itty bit out of it in February. Proud moment. I switched to using Groundwork, but I did repurchase Painterly in April.

March

  • Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer Light – I really liked this stuff BUT I don’t think it helped my makeup stay in place for longer and it didn’t really mattify my skin. It did make the product go on better, though, so there’s that. I haven’t repurchased because I have a Body Shop primer I want to use up (but I really don’t like it and feel too bad about chucking it).
  • Kiehl’s Turmeric and Cranberry Seeds Energising Masque (sample) – I really liked this!
  • Cettua Halfmoon Firming Eye Patch (1 pair) – This was really cooling. I still have a bunch left before I consider repurchasing. I may try another brand. I don’t feel too loyal about this sort of stuff.
  • Garnier Micellar Oil-Infused Cleansing Water – Instant repurchase. I love this. I use it everyday to remove my makeup before I go in with an oil cleanser.
  • Crabtree & Evelyn Avocado, Olive and Basil Hand Cream (25g) – I really didn’t like the scent of this cream (reminded me of salad) but it was moisturising.
  • Loreal Super Liner So Couture – My favourite liner because it has a BRUSH tip, not a felt tip. Brush tips are just so much easier to use. I repurchased BUT I also bought L.O.V’s Royal Liner (also a brush tip), which is equally good and I think it’s cheaper than Loreal.
  • Theravine Ultravine Advance Ros Night Cream (3ml sample) – I had no feelings about this stuff. I feel like I’ve used more moisturising options.
  • Theravine Anti-Wrinkle Night Cream (3ml sample) – Same as above.
  • Tony Moly Aloe Moisturising Sheet Mask – I really liked this. I get the same sticky feeling after I’ve used it, but I just ignore that.
  • Soap & Glory The Scrub of your Life – Loveddddddd this. S&G really need to come to South Africa. I think they would do SO well here and I’d be the happiest person ever.
  • Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge – This was great. It didn’t break, but it was getting really tatty, so I got a new one. I used my Clicks points, so I ended up only paying about R50 for this. The new one is COMPLETELY different, so if you didn’t like the original sponge, give the repackaged one a go. I must say, I like the new version a lot better.

Wow, did I finish A LOT of stuff. This always makes me happy but it also reminds me that I have so much shit (and I really shouldn’t have this much!) so here’s to more using up and less buying.

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