Sephora Holiday Shopping Event Haul 2016 | The Skincare, Home, Bath and Body

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This year I notice my skin is getting more dry than usual, so I decided to explore and experiment with body creams out there. I’m actually very very excited about all the skincare and bath products I got, which I usually am not. Below I’m gonna go through all the items I purchased, some I have not had the time to fully try them out yet, so like the makeup haul, I will pop in some first impression of them!

  1. Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil 7 Piece Body Butter Collection
    Anything in a jar usually turns me off, for sanitary reason and my own laziness. But I really wanted something thick and heavy as a winter moisturizer so I decided to give this set a try. You get 7 different scents to try which is a great way to explore a brand that’s new to you. So far I really like the body butter from how it applies to how it leaves my skin. I apply it on my body (specifically legs which gets the most dry) after I shower and it keeps my skin very hydrated and moisturized throughout the night. It is very smooth and not tacky when applying, which was my biggest fear when it comes to heavy moisturizers.
  2. Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Body Boom
    The Bum Bum Cream has been all over the internet, I’m curious about the hype and want to know if it’ll actually tighten up my skin. During my quest of searching for some moisturizer to test out I saw the set which is only 10 dollars more than the full size Bum Bum Cream and comes with a full size body wash, so I got suckered into getting the set. I have yet to try out the moisturizer yet because I wanted to give the Josie Maran Body Butter a fair try before switching, so TBD on how it works (the packaging though is so so adorable).
  3. Ouai Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner
    Reading the review online for Ouai I was really skeptical on the smell, because a lot of people said it smells like old lady (but what does that even mean?). I decided to give it a try anyway because there are also a lot of great review and I have yet to find a shampoo and conditioner set that I really love. Upon first try I actually really like the smell, it’s very subtle but comforting, it doesn’t make me nauseous or overwhelm me. I went with the Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner combination because I really want something that will give my scalp a good clean, but also want to avoid having it strip away all the shine or dry out my hair. So far I would say I enjoy using them, will need a longer testing period to see if it’s a repurchase worthy product.
  4. Moroccanoil Fleur de Rose Shampoo and Conditioner
    I had a sample of this shampoo and conditioner and liked it upon initial use, but after a while, the scent got a little overwhelming. I got them during the sale because I wanted to give it another try, but when I opened the packaging without ripping off the seal of the shampoo, I knew the smell would be too much for me. It’s a beautiful rose scent, which might be beautiful for a candle, but as a shampoo and conditioner it was just a little too much. They went back to the store the next day…
  5. Nest Holiday Ornament Scented Candle
    If you want your home to smell like Christmas, these are not only delicious smelling but the packaging is also very festive. They would be great for decorating your home for the holiday or as gifts to loved ones.
  6. Belif Don’t Be Flaky Gift Set
    I’m a big fan of the Belif True Cream Moisturizing Bomb and have been wanting to try their Moisturizing & Firming Eye Cream because HeyClaire raves about it all the time. I’ve been hesitant to purchase the full size eye cream because I’m pretty forgetful when it comes to applying it… So this set was perfect for me! I have yet to open the Hungarian Water Essence and I honestly have no idea what it really is, so will have to give that a test run before I report back.
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Sephora Holiday Shopping Event Haul 2016 | The Skincare, Home, Bath and Body

Glossier phase2 and more

As you can see, I finally gave in and placed an order for some Glossier products and I regret nothing. I’ve been looking for a lighter base for my face and a nice concealer that’s not too heavy, so when I saw Phase 2 came out I had to give it a try.

Per usual Glossier products came in their cute custom shipping box that’s always a pleasure to open. The Phase 2 set came in a beautiful white box that has magnetic closure, it is the standard high quality minimalist design you can expect Glossier. In my mind I already thought of a million ways to use it, now I just have to pick one.

There are 3 items included in the Phase 2 box, two new and one everyone is all too familiar with. I don’t think I need to say much about the Boy Brow, as all the reviews out there have been nothing but good. I have it in brown already, but was glad to see them restock the black (finally) which was the color I wanted originally but have been out of stock for months!

Of the whole Phase 2 set, I was most excited about the Stretch Concealer because I haven’t found one that I love yet. I’ve been having issues with my concealer looking cake-y so I’m so glad Glossier came out with a concealer! The Glossier Stretch Concealer to me is the perfect combination of coverage and dewy-ness, it is easy to apply and looks so natural on the skin.

The one product I didn’t expect to like as much as I do is Generation G, a matte (but sheer) lipstick with incredible consistency. I got the color Cake which looks like a beautiful taupe-y nude in the tube, it is just tinted enough to show up on my lips, and it works like a color corrector for my lip color, giving my lips a healthy glow with just one layer of application. Even though it’s a matte lip tint, it’s not drying at all and almost feels like a balm when applying. Now I wish I got all the other shades as well so I can try them out!

On top of getting the Phase 2 set, I also got the Perfecting Skin Tint to help give my face a little more glow. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve been paying more attention to makeup tutorials and noticing how big of a difference a nice light weight base can make even if you have great skin, or my skin is simply getting to the point that it really needs some extra oomph, but I’ve been noticing my skin has been looking a little lackluster lately and I desperately want to get my glow back. The Perfect Skin Tint is exactly what I needed – a light weight base that doesn’t overwhelm your skin but gives it a little hint of color to make everything look balanced.

Interested in trying out Glossier? Get 20% off your first order by using this link! 

Glossier phase2 and more

Skin care update: mom knows best

When it comes to skin care, my mom is my go-to person. She’s a believer in anything Sisley (and Estee Lauder) when it comes to skin care, and I’m glad she introduced the brands to me. I’ve been branching out and experimenting with new skin care items recently, but nothing is comparable.

During my trip home she helped me restocked my skincare stash, and now I have a full set of skin care items in my collection! These are some of my favorite items from the stash, I love the consistency of them and how they make my skin feel moisturized but not greasy. Skin care is definitely something very personal, and what works for you might not work for others. I’m glad I was exposed to good skin care routine early on, and hope to keep exploring as I go.

Skin care update: mom knows best

Learning to love everyday skin care

My almost always clear skin definitely have my mom to thank for, ever since I was little she made sure I put everything on my face – serum, moisturizer, extra moisturizer for the winter, face masks, you name it. But when I was younger, I hated it because I really dislike the feeling of having something wet and sticky on my face, face masks and eye cream were especially terrible in my 14 year old mind. I laugh at it now because as I’m getting older and getting more and more into skincare and makeup, I realize how important they are and am thankful everyday that she was willing to spend all the money and time to make sure I get the best skincare from the start.

Though I still hate the feeling of having sticky things on my face, I never skip my 3 step routine (toner, serum, moisturizer) anymore, and have been trying and forcing myself to do more masks and apply eye cream every night. I’m still not 100% sure what I actually need or what works best for my skin, but I’m slowly exploring different options with samples or just purchases out of curiosity, hopefully one day I’ll find my go-to brand. But in the meantime, any suggestions on what other brands I should try?

Learning to love everyday skin care

Serum favorites 

I like to change things up depend on my mood when it comes to my skin care, especially the serum part. I like to have multiple bottles with different purpose so I can target my skin problem depending on the day. Here are the 3 I’m currently loving for different purposes!

First the Origins Original Skin Renewal Serum with Willowherb is great for when you’re having a good skin day but wants a little oomph. I usually use this in the morning as it is pretty light weight and refreshing, the formula is just enough to keep my skin dewy and hydrated without making it oily. The Estee Lauder Perfectionist Wrinkle Lifting Firming Serum gives my face a really smooth texture, it also helps me absorbs my moisturizer better as mentioned here. I use this when I feel my skin needs some extra attention or after a very stressful day, I usually use it at night so I can sleep on it and let the wrinkle lifting do its work without moving too much face muscles. The Origins Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega Bright Skin Tone Correcting Serum is the bottle I reach for when I feel like my skin needs a little extra attention especially on the color correcting front. I find it extremely effective on helping to even out my skin tone and brightening it up, there were noticeable improvements after a few days of use when my skin was recovering from UV damage.

They each have a different purpose for me and targets different problems. Of course there are days when I just feel like using one over the other for no reason, but I just follow my guts because I’m sure subconsciously my brain knows what skin is craving even when I’m not thinking about it.

What’s your favorite serum(s) to use?

Serum favorites 

Skincare 1.2.3.

It’s been a while since I talked about my skincare in this little corner, so today I’m going to briefly run through what I’m currently using as my 3 step skincare!

After cleansing, I pop a little Sisley Toning Lotion all over my face to freshen it up and prep it for the next steps. I find that this step is particular important to help the serum and moisturizer absorb. For serum I’m current loving the Origins Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega Bright Skin Ton Correcting Serum (well that’s a mouth full) since I’ve been out and about a lot of the weekends recently. I wanted something that is light weight, comfortable on the face and will even out the tan and take care of the UV damage all my activities has caused me. I find this extremely helpful and shows visible difference after a few use, I also love the scent and the texture it left my skin after using. Last but not least is my beloved Sisley Ecological Compound, this is my favorite moisturizer and I’m extremely sad to see it running so low… This bottle is incredibly moisturizing but doesn’t leave your skin feeling icky or sticky. I really can’t stress enough on how amazing the quality Sisley products have, though it’s on the (really) expensive side, it’s THE brand I would recommend if you want to invest in high end skincare.

Skincare 1.2.3.

Skincare on my own

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Fun fact: I’ve never purchased skincare product on my own.  I always rely on my mom when it comes to skincare, whatever she gets is what I’ll use, no questions asked.  But since I live so far away from her and doesn’t get to visit home as often as I used to in my college days, I don’t get to restock my skincare item via mom anymore and I’m seriously devastated, she’s my skincare idol.

I’m super excited we’re transitioning into Spring, but seasonal change usually make my skin freak out. When this happens my “need to update my skincare routine” mentality goes into full swing, and usually I would just go find an item my mom had stored away for me and everything will be okay, but since I don’t have that option this time around, I started looking diligently through all the beauty blogs and YouTube videos trying to find something that I think will help my skin problems – small breakouts which used to never happened when I was younger, more visible pores, oily or dry skin type.  Self help at it’s finest.

My 3 step skincare consist of toner, serum and moisturizer.  I’ve been getting by with just toner and moisturizer for the past few months because I ran out of the serum I have and didn’t really see the need to replace it especially when the bottle cost more than 2 student loan payment…  But recently my skin started to get dry quicker, I can feel that it’s not absorbing the moisturizer as well as it used to and I know it’s time to get some serum action back in my skincare routine.

I’m really picky when it comes to the texture of serum and lotion I put on my face, I like it light, creamy, and not sticky.  I’ve tried some brands before that as soon as I put on my face, I want to wash it off because it felt so thick and suffocating, or that even though it was a face cream it left my skin extremely dry, so I was having a really hard time deciding what brand to even look deeper into.  After doing some research and talking to my mom, I decided to go with the Estee Lauder Perfectionist CP+R Wrinkle Lifting/Firming Serum as it’s a brand she used before and really liked.

So far I’ve noticed that my skin definitely absorb the lotion a lot better, it doesn’t feel dry after a few hours and the consistency of the serum is exactly what I like.  But since I just started using it I haven’t really noticed the “wrinkle lifting” effect, and granted I don’t have any super noticeable wrinkles and have never paid that close of an attention to the wrinkles on my face, so even if it’s already improved I wouldn’t really know.  I will definitely keep an eye on this serum and it’s effect on my skin in the long run, and I’m also thinking about trying some more affordable brands in the near future when I need to replace my moisturizer.  I already have a brand in mind so stay tune for another skincare post in the near future!

Skincare on my own