Tuesday, March 26, 2013

February-March 2013 Empties

Hurray for another round of beauty trash and a little update on my stash reduction! I powered through a lot of deluxe samples these past couple of weeks and (drumroll) even managed to completely finish some make-up products!
Starting with skincare: I used up my Alaffia Rooibos & Shea Antioxidant Facial Toner more info here, and honestly, that's the only product I may consider repurchasing at some point in the future; all the other bits in the photo were just not that great. The Estee Lauder Soft Clean Tender Cream Cleanser was not tender at all on my skin; it seemed so loaded with a floral fragrance that my skin would instantly turn beetroot red on contact, plus it felt heavier that my regular Clarins Cream Cleanser. From the three make-up removers pictured, NARS was the best but still not great enough to warrant a future purchase. The By Terry Creme de Rose smelt absolutely beautiful but the siliconey texture did not agree with my combination skin, and lastly the Lancome Absolue Eye Premium BX was fine (it actually has tiny light pink pearl particles to brighten) but by golly, for $95 it better make my undereye area the best I've seen... which it didn't. And I prefer a lighter, more hydrating texture.
 
Some fragrance samples: Bvlgari Mon Jasmin Noir (citruses, lily of the valley, jasmin, cedar, patchouli, musk) was umm... not dark enough for me, despite the name a bit too bright and pretty; but then, it's a younger sister to Bvlgari's Jasmin Noir. On the other hand, Thierry Mugler Alien (Indian jasmin, woods, white amber) was a lot more memorable with its strong but cheerful jasmin notes and sensual dry down, and Mr's favorite from the three perfumes. My favorite though was Kenzo Amour (white tea, rice, cherry blossom, frangipani, heliotrope, musk, vanilla, woods, incense), an oriental, warm scent with incredible sillage and lasting power; in fact, I've finished my sample about 3 weeks ago and can still smell it on some of my scarves. The beautiful, smoky, creamy sweetness of Kenzo Amout definitely captured my imagination and I think I will be going back for a full bottle as soon as I finish some of my less-loved perfumes.
Oh hello, make-up empties, how nice to see you! Finally, I'm making some progress in downsizing the make-up stash, and so 3 full size products are biting the dust: a Coastal Scents Flawless Finish Mineral Foundation in Honey Light (replaced by the Laura Mercier Mineral Powder), a Wet'n'Wild Eye Khol in Taupe, which I used for my eyebrows, and lastly Essie nail polish in Hot Coco, which mysteriously dried out on me as was beyond salvaging.
Haircare and hand creams: Alba Botanica Gardenia Hydrating Hair Conditioner, smelt nice but that's about all I can say on the subject, Loma Objective Clarifying Shampoo, sadly discontinued but replaced with MoroccanOil Clarifying Shampoo; I'm not sure yet which one I like better but I think the MoroccanOil is a deeper cleanse. For hand creams, L'Occitane Shea Butter has already been repurchased in the large tube, and Bath & Body Works Shea Cashmere Hand Cream is really nothing like it and I'm not sure who needs shimmer in their hand cream...
Lastly, three lip-themed discards: Lush Sweet Lips Lip Scrub did an okay job of exfoliating the lips but I've found that for me, a damp towel is a whole lot cheaper, faster and less messy; no sugar crystals clinging to the corners of my mouth like a five year old who just had a donut. The Lush Let Them Eat Cake is just far too old now to be safe for use, and the praline-shaped no name lip gloss, a gift from my sisters-in-law, just wasn't something I enjoyed using, even though I really appreciate the sentiment behind the present. Oh, and some things that aren't pictured: two very old Lush bath bombs, Honey Bee and Big Blue (maybe) have finally been used up as well.

Now, for some more stash-reducing magic: I did another big clearout of my make-up drawers with specific recipients in mind; what I mean is that I divided my rarely used items into a couple piles and then packaged them nicely in little pouches and make-up bags, ready to be given to (mostly work) friends. Not to get into too much detail, I approximately gave away 20 various full size make-up products, 7 make-up brushes and 5 deluxe make-up samples.
Now, as for my monthly 2 items allowance: depending on the counting method, I'm either over or short or just right. For some replacements, I got Essie Chinchilly to replace Hot Coco, especially that Chinchilly has just been discontinued and I'd had my eye on it for a long time. For bath treats, I got three bubble thingies from Lush since I'd diligently used up everything in my stash. In terms of new purchases, I got a new high-end lipstick, review coming soon, and a lash serum, something I'd never tried before. So, to make things fair and square, I shall now specify that my allowance is two new items excluding replacements, and still, back-ups can only be bought once the product in question is nearly/completely used up or otherwise disposed of. I think I didn't do too terribly this month; I already have one order planned for April, which I'm going to count as one purchase, and I'm not sure what the second new item will be.

February-March Empties Total: 23 items, including:
9 full size products
8 deluxe size samples
3 one-time use samples/ perfume vials
3 products tossed
32  products given away
Year To Date Amount: 52 full sizes, 21 deluxe samples, 9 one-time use samples.

Overall, I feel a lot happier about the size of my collection now and I'm looking forward to freeing up even more space in the upcoming months. One thing I've observed though is that the entire stash-reducing process is making me a lot more careful and discerning shopper and that not so many items manage to catch my attention. How are you doing on your minimalist resolutions? Have you discovered any new ways to reduce your existing stash as well as new make-up lemmings?

17 comments:

  1. You'd devoted to using up things completely, judging by the number of used things.
    Feels so good finishing up a product, doesn't it?

    I don't have any tips, i'm broke so minimalistic living is a breeze. :D haha

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  2. Hi, what are your thoughts on the Reviva Labs Vitamin E Stick? Thanks!

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    1. Hi Hannah! The Reviva Labs Vitamin E stick felt very old-school to me but more importantly, on my lips (which is what I mostly used it for) it was not enough moisturizing... it felt great at first but would be completely absorbed within an hour. I hope that helps!

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  3. OMG I can't follow, how on earth are you finishing so much stuff??

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    1. Most of the empties I've had recently were deluxe samples, they're much faster to get through than full sizes! :)

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  4. woooo good work! I can't believe you used up so much!!

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  5. Wow, congrats on all the empties! 2013 has been a product purging year for me as well...I haven't kept track well enough with school/work these days, however I've finished a few mediocre drugstore products since January which feels great! I don't have the heart to just throw things out if they don't irritate my skin! Giving away makeup is easy too when you live in a college apartment with 3 other girls...haha x

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    1. Yay, good job! Going through mediocre products is a bit of a pain but sooo satisfying once you use them up! And I like giving things away to friends... it's like finding new homes for my pretties :)

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  6. I'm going through some stuff too, without replacing, and it's making everything seem much more manageable!

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  7. I laughed at your description of lip scrubs "like a kid who just ate a donut". You're right, it's just like that!

    You've gotten so many products down! Well done! I'm curious about the MoroccanOil shampoo you're using now - review?

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    1. I'm still planning to write a post about my haircare routine, I'll definitely review it then!

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  8. very well done!!!
    love your empties~
    cheers,
    jacq

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  9. Good work! Strange how the Essie polish just dried up. I always take a gander at the Alba range but end up passing. Glad to here it isn't much...

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  10. So inspiring, Monika! You make me want to get rid of everything and spring clean with a mad frenzy!

    And I do not understand how even your empties photos manage to look so pretty. @__@

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  11. I adore your photos; even the empties and discards look ridiculously tempting.

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    1. Awww, Kate, that's high praise coming from you! <3

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  12. Great job Rocaille! I love reading empties post and going through empties - the process felt so accomplished :) going through empties bit by bit also made me more cautious of the things I purchase, I have to constantly remind myself i'm to downsize, not to enlarge the numbers.

    i have to say though, the photos you taken are extremely pretty even they are just emptied products!!!!!!!

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