Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Texas Empties

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I've probably mentioned this a bunch of times already, so forgive me for repeating myself. In September, I moved from the midwest to Texas for a new job. Then at the beginning of September, I moved from Texas to L.A. (for the same job). My husband and I drove across country, and since it's only a year-long gig, we just took with us what we could fit in our car. I ended up finishing a lot of products while I was in Texas, which was great, because every little square inch of space counted on the next leg of our move. You know how things never seem to take up the same amount of space when you pack them a second time?

So here's an empties post, without the most inspiring photography, I'm afraid. But there are thematic stars for Texas! At first I divided my garbage into makeup, skincare, and haircare, but then I finished more shit in the last couple of days before the move, so that organization didn't hold up. I didn't save foils, bath/body products, or shampoos and conditioners, though I actually used up a number of those as well.

Starting with the photo above, beginning from the top left:

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting PowderReviewed here. I do like this powder a lot, but it's quite expensive, so I'm not sure I'd buy it again. This mini jar was actually a gift. I think it lasted the better part of a year.

Urban Decay Optical Illusion Primer (deluxe sample): I like this primer quite a bit--enough to crack it open and scrape out the inside. It does blur and reflect light and all that. The texture is a bit heavy and slick feeling, though. I have another sample I'm working on, and then I might buy a tube. (I've mentioned before that this has been the weird year of Urban Decay for me, and this is another of their products that I got into.) Interestingly enough, the mini size is actually a better value!

Maybelline The Colossal Cat Eyes Mascara: I bought a handful of Maybelline mascaras last year, because Amazon had them for less than $3 a piece. Maybelline mascaras always flake on me. This was no exception. Otherwise it was a decent mascara, but the flaking drove me crazy, and I tossed it before it was even close to finished.

Buxom Lash Mascara (mini): This mascara came from one of those Sephora Favorites sets. It was great, except it has one of those fucking enormous brushes that it seems like every new mascara has, and I have small eyes, so I have a hard time getting at the small lashes in the corners. I also tend to stab myself with big mascara brushes. Don't forget about us beady-eyed folks, makeup gods!

IT Cosmetics Superhero Mascara (mini): From the same Sephora kit. I don't have any particular memories of this mascara, which I will interpret to mean it was unremarkable and not that I am losing my mind.

Shiseido eyebrow pencil sample: I don't remember the shade name, but I got the sample from Choix before they imploded. It was fine, but the plastic thing on the end prevented further sharpening, even though there was SO MUCH LEFT. (Yes, I tried to pry it off. Of course I did!)

Again, from the top left corner above (i.e. a shitload of Paula's Choice):

Paula's Choice 2% BHA: Briefly reviewed here. Maybe I should write a dedicated post about this stuff some day, since I've been using it for over a decade. Or have you heard all you care to about it? I immediately opened another bottle, and I have another backup waiting.

Paula's Choice Omega+ Complex: I loved this. It calmed the redness in my skin like nothing else and functioned as a light moisturizer in the Texas humidity. Now that I'm not riding the Paula's Choice referral credits gravy train anymore, though, I'm balking at the price. Maybe I'll replace it once I've finished every other hydrating serum I have.

Paula's Choice Calm Redness Relief Serum: It's ok. It's hydrating and kind of soothing. It doesn't work for me the way the Omega+ serum did. I'm actually working on a second bottle of it right now, though, because I panicked when my Paula's Choice credits were about to expire and ordered another one.

Paula's Choice Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum: I almost finished this tube, but not quite, and decided to just chuck it before the move. I didn't notice any results from it, and it had that thick, greasy silicone texture (not the matte, powdery silicone texture) that I don't like. Maybe the antioxidants prevented bad things from happening to my face that would have happened otherwise. Who knows.

L'Oréal Revitalift Triple Power Moisturizer: I got this stuff for free from Influenster (who haven't sent me anything since last July--I wonder if it's because I didn't positively review the last few thigns they sent?). I didn't like it at all. It was too heavy for my skin and very obnoxiously fragranced. I ended up using it up as a hand cream.

Paula's Choice 10% Niacinamide Booster: Mentioned here. It's great, and I'm using another bottle now, but I might get my niacinamide from a less expensive source when I finish that one.

The Ordinary Buffet: I still plan to review this, even though I finished it a while ago. I should get on that. I'll just say that it was good, but I wouldn't buy it again. I've used moisturizing serums that I liked better, and it didn't get along with my silicone-based sunscreen.

Paula's Choice Moisture Gel: Reviewed briefly here. This is another product that has been one of my favorites for at least a decade, but now (say it with me) is too much for my budget, so I haven't replaced it.

I'm not really a hair person, so I'll do something different here (and let me know if you have any questions).

LOVED: Batiste dry shampoos (reviewed here).

LIKED A LOT: L'Oréal Extraordinary Oil Serum (reviewed here).

LIKED A BIT: Klorane dry shampoo and No. 4 detangling spray.

HATED: OUAI dry shampoo foam.

And here are the miscellaneous other things I finished after taking the photos above, but before actually moving.

The John Frieda Frizz Ease serum is a bit of a cheat, because I mixed the little bit I had left with another hair serum. The Expert Finish formula was too heavy for me--better suited to thicker hair, I think.

The Paula's Choice Resist Clear Skin Hydrator was a barely moisturizing moisturizer for people who barely need moisturizing, I guess.

The Origins GinZing scrub was another freebie from Influenster, and it was ok. My husband actually used most of it, because he likes a scrub more than I do, but I'm still taking credit for it here, apparently.

Oh look, I did include a body product in here! That's because I had this Suave lotion for at least a couple of years, so it was a real triumph to finally finish it. One of the reasons it took so long to get through is that I'd made it into a sort of moisturizing swamp water. Any time I had a sample or small container of a moisturizer or serum, etc., that I didn't like to use on my face, I emptied it into this bottle. The fragrance of the Suave lotion overpowered everything else, and I got some use out of crap I didn't want that way. Anyone else do something like that?

The Paula's Choice eye cream seemed pointless to me, so I used that little sample as a hand cream.

I got this Lancôme Creme Douceur cleanser as compensation for doing a consumer study. It was a little drying, so I didn't use it more than once a week. It lasted forever.

On to California! Palm tree emoji!

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