January 4, 2014

Empty Empty Empty: November & December

Here are my product empties for the last two months of 2013!  (AKA, my trash I've been saving in an ever-growing pile just to show you...)

One 'N Only Argan Oil Moisture Repair Shampoo
I thought I would like this based on Amazon reviews.  I was wrong.  It just didn't clean my hair thoroughly.  It was nice to my scalp but left my hair feeling waxy, tangled, and unclean.  I'm not sure who this works for, but every time I used it I had to embark on major conditioning/ detangling odysseys directly after, and I have really fine hair...so, strange.

Triple Lanolin Aloe Vera Hand and Body Lotion
This was my main hand lotion used sporadically throughout the day in November and December. I love it! It's a lotion, but is incredibly hydrating due to the properties of lanolin- and I'm sure the aloe and mineral oil don't hurt.

If you don't know, most products containing lanolin (a wax derived from sheep's wool) have a very pungent, unique smell, which for many is unpleasant. Once you get used to it, it's not so bad, and the benefits of this lotion certainly outweigh the smell for me! Did I mention that it only retails for around 3 dollars for 6 ounces?  Cheap too!

Soap & Glory Hand Food
Here's a hand cream that's not so cheap. I kind of hate the packaging.  The look is totally cute and draws me in- don't get me wrong.  It's the stiffness of the plastic.  It makes it really difficult to squeeze product out once you get to the final 1/3 remaining. It's one of those situations where I'll be cutting apart the tube and depotting the rest of the cream.  Annoying. (But a pretty nice, rich hand cream that smells good.)

I probably won't buy again due to the price, but I had wanted to see what the hype was about.  It met my expectations without exceeding them...

Nivea Extended Moisture Daily Lotion
A tiny, tiny bottle, but the formula is actually quite nice for a lotion.  It feels very rich and kind of oily, but then it absorbs very quickly so is convenient to use throughout the day.  This might be a good option for full-size repurchase.

Aquaphor Healing Ointment Advanced Therapy
I've been using this on my cuticles at night, and I have to say I'm majorly impressed. It's mostly petrolatum-based, but also contains lanolin, and whatever it is, it's completely helped me stave off the Winter cuticle dryness I normally experience! I've already bought four little back-up tubes. Aquaphor is my new boyfriend!

Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Creme
This is the larger .60 oz tin, and it's taken me a few years to use...well, mostly because I keep losing it and re-finding it, to be honest! I've been using this one at work for about 6 months now.  It's decent, smells very nice, and does the job.  The formula can be a little stiff if the climate is cooler, so is hard to distribute at first (mostly affects me during the Winter).

Pretty Nails Instant Polish Remover Regular Conditioning Formula
Again, has good review on Amazon, but I felt kinda 'meh' about it.  I wanted to try a jar-style nail polish remover, but next time I'll go for one with the bristles instead of a sponge inside.  The sponge in this one just slides around and you can't really get any traction for that reason. I wasn't even trying to take off glitters with it- just mostly normal shimmer finishes.  The actual formula seems OK though. (The little sponge on a stick is for removing toenail polish.)

Revlon Quick-Dry Top Coat
Yep. Another bottle! It's my favorite topcoat.  It dries as fast as Seche Vite for me, and is almost as glossy without the shrinkage issues.  My one complaint is that the final 1/4 of the bottle is way too stringy and gloopy to use, and thinner doesn't seem to help, although this issue affects many quick-dry topcoats.

Befine Lip Serum with Chamomile & Beets
I received this in a Birchbox a couple of years ago...back when I still ordered Birchbox.  I'm not a fan!  It's very oily, and feels healthy and moisturizing for that reason, but leaves my lips drier than before I'd used it! Additionally, it seems to have gone off?  Granted, my tube is old, but I'm throwing this away without using the final 1/3 because it just tastes rancid. Disgusting!

EOS Smooth Sphere Lip Balm in Strawberry Sorbet
This may be my favorite EOS yet.  The taste/smell is very yummy: strawberry-esque without being too sweet.

Paula's Choice Skin Balancing Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 30
I liked this, and I think my next sunscreen purchase will be from Paula's Choice, if not this exact product.  I'm currently using up a Missha sunscreen, though.  This product seemed to absorb into the skin nicely, which is a major requirement for facial suncreens for me.

Clinique Moisture Surge Intense Skin Fortifying Hydrator
Okay, I'm super sad to see this deluxe sample all gone.  I love this moisturizer, and I know I'm not alone!  It is very, very rich, and may not be appropriate in the Summer, but I do love it at night in the Fall and Winter. My skin looks very nice in the morning after using this the previous night.

Clinique High Impact Mascara
Look I finished a mascara! Granted, it's a sample size, but still. I loved it, and would probably repurchase if I didn't already have like 9 other mascaras currently in progress or waiting in the wings.  As it dries out, it just gets better...I'm becoming a bigger and bigger fan of Clinique products.

This mascara gives me great length and definition with moderate volume, and, most importantly, doesn't flake by the end of the day.  People who like very voluminous lashes might not love this, or might want to layer it with something else.

NYX Eyebrow Cake Powder in Auburn/Red
I use this religiously, every day- but just the one darker red shade, as you can see. I apologize for how messy it looks, but that's daily use I guess! (I use my own angled brush and spoolie, not the ones in this set.)

I was about to give this such a great review, but I just repurchased it, and the new one seems of lesser quality.  I'm not sure if it's all in my had, but the new one is more chalky and has more fallout for me to deal with. Hmmm.  This change (if it is one) is concurrent with Nyx's wide debut in Targets and drugstores, so I have my suspicions.  It's a shame, because I did love this so much, and that dark brown-red powder is perfect for people with dark red/ burgundy hair.


That's all, folks!


  1. We use the same brow powder, although I think mine is the darkest shade. That's a bummer about the possible new formula. :( Do you use the aquaphor with cotton gloves or just slather it on before bed?

    1. Haha, cool. Yea, I'm not totally sure if I am imagining it or not, but the new one seems more powdery and less pigmented. :(. I usually just slather but have done the gloves once or twice if I'm trying to repair damage.

  2. I love the burts bees cuticle cream and I was also wondering about the soap and glory products but they were a bit too pricey for me to just try. Plus they're so overly girly that I feel like not buying them, just because :)

    1. I actually really loved the Soap and Glory body butter in a tub. I think I reviewed it in a previous Empties. It's true, though, they are overly girly.