May & June Empties

June is far from over yet, but since I’m heading to the US very soon to stay with my lovely guyfriend, I thought I’d post them early! I’ve still been eagerly working on finishing up products rather than wasting them, just so I can tell you all about exactly how I feel about them! So let’s jump into them already..

Skincare & Makeup

1. REN Frankincense Revitalising Night Cream (£32 via Look Fantastic) – Incredibly pricey for just 50ml of product, but this seems to be the only night cream that truly nourishes all skin types (including combination & oily skin) overnight and doesn’t break me out! I apply a couple of pumps of this over my night serum and my skin always looks and feels very moisturised and soft the next day, without causing any breakouts. Also the airless pump packaging is perfect, making it so easy and hygienic to use. I just wish it didn’t cost quite so much! Repurchase? When I can next afford it!

2. Johnson’s Makeup-Be-Gone Extra Sensitive Wipes (£3.19 via Boots) – Yet more of these blasted wipes! I still feel like the texture is way too abrasive for sensitive skin, they’re too dry and don’t do a great job at removing makeup (but I’ll use them all up anyway). Even the super-cheap Boots own brand face wipes perform so much better than these. Repurchase? No.

3. Lush Rosy Cheeks Fresh Face Mask (unavailable online) – My dad was awesome enough to pick this up for me from the Oxford Street store! I’ve already raved about it before, & finally finished it up – these little tubs are enough for around 5-6 uses, but need to be kept in the fridge and used within a couple of weeks. The results were most noticeable on first use, but not so much on consequent uses, although it still calmed my skin and kept it soft quite nicely. Beautifully rose scented and a must-try for anyone with sensitive skin. Currently it is an Oxford Street and Poole Lush store exclusive, but I have a feeling it’ll be more widely available very soon! Repurchase? When possible.

4. Lush 9 to 5 Facial Cleansing Lotion [Sample] (full size from £5.10 via Lush) – I’d been curious to try one of Lush’s non-scrubby cleansers, so it was a nice surprise to find this little sample in one of my Lush Kitchen orders! This creamy floral-almond cleanser smelled so lovely, but I felt it was a little too rich for my combination skin, and would definitely work better for someone with drier skin! I’d use an oil-based cleanser to remove makeup if necessary before using this, as it wasn’t so effective at removing mascara. Repurchase? No.

5. MAC Prep + Prime Future Length Lash Serum [currently unavailable] – I purchased this in January to use as a brow serum but strangely it has completely vanished from the MAC Cosmetics website since! Just as well since I wasn’t a huge fan – I used it religiously day and night on my brows for 3 months and only saw a very minimal amount of fine baby-hair growth, nothing that anyone else would ever notice. I believe it was around £25, so definitely not worth it in my opinion! In contrast, GrandeBrow gave me great results & brand new growth after only a couple of weeks, so I’d definitely recommend investing your money elsewhere! At least I have another empty for Back to MAC.. Repurchase? No.

6. Maybelline Full ‘n’ Soft Mascara (£4.84 via Amazon UK) – The mascara I always go back to! As much as I love trying out new products, this is the trusty mascara I always end up returning to when I’ve had enough of overpriced & rubbish formulas. Everything you want in a mascara – lashes look long, luscious and defined without flaking, clumping or looking spidery in the least. Unfortunately it isn’t sold on Maybelline displays in the UK, so you have to get it online or from the US! And after trying out some pretty terrible, overpriced mascaras recently I definitely need another asap! Repurchase? Yes.

Skincare (Body)

7. Mitchum Advanced Control 48 Hour Roll-On Deodorant in Powder Fresh (£2 via Boots) – My everyday deodorant that never fails! I’ve been using the Shower Fresh scent in the new packaging recently, and I don’t know if it’s been reformulated or if my body’s not responding to it as well as usual, but the other variety hasn’t worked quite the same! The scent is light and unobtrusive, and it really does work all day, even if you feel like you sweat a ton compared to others. I just wouldn’t recommend using it for the full 48 hours! I’ve already bought another Powder Fresh, so hopefully it still works just as well as ever! Repurchase? Yes.

8. Gilette Satin Care Olay Sensitive Shave Gel [Travel Size] (£1.50 via Sainsburys) – A great mini size ideal for your next holiday or trip away! This lasted me a couple of weeks of regular shaving, and the Olay formula felt nicely luxurious and softening on my skin – expensive but I enjoyed it! Not exactly a necessity as my regular shaving gels work just fine, but this is definitely a little more softening. Repurchase? Yes.

9. Bath & Body Works PocketBac in Flip Flopped Fruit ($1.75 via Bath & Body Works) – A bit of a victory for me, since I either lose these or get fed up of the scent before finishing them! This exact scent is no longer available, but Bath & Body Works (only available within the US unfortunately) has such a variety of scents there will definitely be something for everyone. I received this in a makeup swap quite a long time ago, and this one smelled like a delicious fruity tropical cocktail – a lovely reminder of summer even when the weather is grim! I use these a whole lot when I’m up in London, they’re so useful when you’re out for the day and need your hands to feel clean and germ-free. Repurchase? When needed (as I have lots).

10. Lush New Charity Pot Hand & Body Lotion (from £6.95 via Lush) – A lotion that is wonderful for your skin as well as the planet – 100% of the profit goes to one of Lush’s carefully selected good causes, which is a wonderful incentive to buy! This thick lotion is ideal for use in the evening, as it has a light floral scent and can be a little greasy, but is very moisturising, and works well with most shower gel scents after an evening bath or shower. It took a while to use up this little pot even with regular use, so you definitely get value for money! Repurchase? Yes.

11. The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector (from £5 via The Body Shop) – My all-time favourite hand cream! Nothing else is quite as good as this – it’s super-thick and definitely more of a nighttime cream as it is a little greasy and smelly (you either like it or hate it), but the resulting baby-smooth hands speak for themselves. I’ve gone through so many of the large tubes as I’ve been using this since I was 10! There’s always a backup in my bedside drawer, and always recommend this to anyone. Repurchase? Yes.

Haircare

12. TiGi Bed Head Queen For A Day Thickening Spray (£13.05 via Feel Unique) – A giant can that I’ve had lying around for ages! I used this before blow-drying. I have to say I didn’t notice much of a difference at all, since I use a volumising mousse as well and haven’t missed it since finishing it up – it didn’t seem to do anything noticeable. Probably just as well, since it’s fairly expensive! Repurchase? No.

13. Aussie Colour Mate Conditioner (£4.19 via Boots) – This lasted ages, and I loved the delicious peachy smell! It didn’t seem to do anything mind-blowingly spectacular, but it worked just fine as a creamy conditioner and didn’t strip the red dye from my hair. Repurchase? Maybe in the future.

14. Lush American Cream Conditioner [Sample] (full size from £4.50 via Lush) – I’ve used full sizes of this up before, and while it isn’t the most moisturising conditioner out there, it smells incredible! I have a perfume and body lotion in this scent as I can’t get enough of the delicious vanilla and sage aroma. Super-dry hair may need something more intense, but this one’s about the smell more than anything! Repurchase? Yes.

Candles & Home Scents

15. Yankee Candle French Vanilla Medium Housewarmer Candle (currently unavailable) – Sadly this candle has been discontinued in the UK! I got this as a lovely gift from someone a couple of years ago, and steadily burned my way through it. I always reached for this whenever I wanted a true, rich vanilla scent which didn’t smell at all artificial or overpowering – I really do hate vanilla scents that smell fake. I found it didn’t burn all the way to the edges, but still did quite well! I haven’t found anything quite like it since, but if I spot one I’ll be sure to pick it up! Repurchase? Yes, if possible.

16. Bath & Body Works Paris Amour 3-Wick Candle (currently unavailable) – Bath & Body Works has a full range of body products in this delightfully fruity-floral, girly scent, but I can no longer find the candle on their site. If you typically love your fruity-floral scents, this is a good one to go for! As with all B&BW candles I’ve tried, it had an excellent scent throw; but unlike most of their candles I’ve tried this didn’t burn very well! Two of the wicks kept drowning and extinguishing themselves, so I periodically had to dump some of the wax to save it, and even then it didn’t burn all the way down, so it was a relief to finish it up in a way. In the meantime I’m trying out other ones! Repurchase? Maybe in the future.

17. Ten Digit Creations Wax Melts in The Comforter and Rose Jam ($1.25 each) – Yet more of these lovely melts I’ve used up! Both fragrances are Lush dupes which smell true to their original products – The Comforter smells exactly like the blackcurrant goodness of the Comforter bubble bar, and Rose Jam smells identical to the delicious-smelling limited edition shower gel of the same name. The quality and throw was excellent – I’ll definitely be ordering more when I can; just a shame that shipping to the UK is expensive, so I had a bundle delivered to my aunt’s home in the US. Repurchase? Yes, when possible.

So that’s my empties for the last month and a bit! I left out Lush bath bits this time since I always use up SO many the list gets endless, and now I wrap my Lush bath bombs with cling film to stop them going bad, it’s hard to keep track of the little paper bags. What do you think, should I include them next time? Or include them in my blog some other way, since I’m a little obsessed? I hope you enjoyed this post – let me know what you’ve been using up lately! And I’m going to be away for a while having some much-needed catching up so there probably won’t be any posts on here in that time, but if you want to follow my adventures via Instagram my profile is @beckyalyssa – I’ll follow you back & we can be Instagram friends!

May Favourites

I know everyone is saying how fast the month has gone, but since it’s just turned my birthday today, and I’m also  going away in just over 2 weeks the time couldn’t have gone more slowly for me! I won’t be back until the end of next month (that’s a lot of makeup & beauty packing!) so I won’t be able to post a Favourites until the end of July / beginning of August unfortunately! But here are my favourites for this month, and you can probably tell I’m a big fan of one brand in particular (try to guess which one)…

1. Lush Don’t Rain On My Parade Shower Gel (from £4.75, only available from Lush Oxford Street) – As you probably know, there were few things more exciting to me than the incredible new Lush store on Oxford Street in London: three floors of exclusive, beautiful-smelling products to sample and enjoy! What more could you ask for, really? The exclusive shower gels are absolute must-haves, and this is one of my favourites – a beautiful turquoise blue shower gel scented with sweet violet and vanilla (and blueberry too, apparently). I’ve been pairing this with Lush’s Violet Nights bath oil and Ultraviolet bubble bar for the loveliest floral baths! I adore all of the new shower gels, but this is the one I’ve been reaching for most of all – I can’t get enough of it.

2. Lush Dark Angels Face & Body Cleanser (from £6.75 via Lush) – Definitely not the prettiest-looking cleanser to use, or the tidiest, but after trying a sample of this and seeing what an amazing difference it made to my skin, I had to get hold of the full size. Simply pinch a tiny piece of this black squishy cleanser, mix with water and gently rub all over the face and neck (and body, if you suffer from body blemishes). And try not to laugh at yourself in the mirror. Suitable for even sensitive skin (just don’t scrub hard), it has made my face incredibly smooth, clear and kept even the hormonal blemishes away. Yes, it’s a messy one, but worth the wiping up afterwards! I use every couple of days and my skin texture has never been better. I’m just going to have to apologise to my guyfriend for the black stuff all over his bathroom when I take this away with me..

3. Lush Rosy Cheeks Face Mask (£5.95, only available from Lush Oxford Street) – Another exclusive – I had to ask my dad to pick this up for me since I couldn’t find it on my trip there! And I’m so glad he did. My skin can be super-sensitive and therefore prone to redness, so I’m thrilled Lush finally has a mask specifically designed to soothe sensitive skin. It immediately relieves any soreness as it’s both cold from the fridge and filled with calamine (ultra-soothing), not to mention the true rose scent is gorgeous. I noticed the biggest difference after my first use, and when used every few days my skin looked and felt much more calm. I hope this becomes permanent asap – I’m not so keen on the other masks but this one is excellent!

4. Lush [New] Charity Pot (£6.95 via Lush) – My current go-to lotion! The light floral/cocoa scent seems to go with most scents, so this is what I’ve been reaching for after an evening bath. Not to mention it’s wonderfully moisturising and leaves skin feeling baby soft the next day – it can feel a little greasy if you use too much, so best to use before going to bed. On top of being a great product in itself, the whole cost of the pot (minus VAT) goes to wonderful charitable causes, meaning it does good for others as well as being great for your skin!

5. Escada Born in Paradise Eau de Toilette (£25 via Debenhams) – I did buy this last year, but unlike many other fragrance purchases I’m still enjoying it! I feel like Escada fragrances are targeted at a younger audience and therefore underrated by most, but this is really just like summer in a bottle, and I feel instantly uplifted and ready for sunshine whenever I wear it! Consisting of pineapple, watermelon, guava and coconut, this is like an irresistable tropical cocktail in spray form, and I love it! Now we just need the tropical weather to go with it..

6. MAC Lipstick in Patisserie (£15.50 via MAC Cosmetics) – This has been my go-to the last couple of months, especially since recolouring my hair a touch too red meant my beloved MAC Creme Cup isn’t quite as flattering as usual. I used to dismiss Patisserie as a ‘boring’ shade, but it’s actually the ideal suit-all casual nude which looks especially good with red hair and dramatic eyes. One of those shades you don’t need a mirror to apply, but effortlessly disguises bare lips with the prettiest pinky-nude hue to pull a look together. I’ve yet to finish up a lipstick, but with the amount I’ve been wearing this lately this could be the one!

7. NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Sex Machine (£19 via Space NK) – A product my mum actually gave to me after disliking it on her own lips is an all-time favourite of mine – so glad it made its way to me! NARS definitely like their risque names, so this one is a little awkward to ask for in store! The prettiest matte dusty pink-rose shade in a soft, easy-to-apply chunky pencil – easy to pair with just about any look, and looks especially pretty on fair skin tones. As you can see this has been well-loved – shows how much I use it!

8. Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Airbrush Foundation in Fair Honey ($36 via Sephora US) – My go-to lazy day foundation! I have to say this really isn’t ‘full coverage’ to me, more of a light to medium. I love that it’s super-easy to apply with a fat fluffy kabuki brush (the recommended Tarte brush is a bit too stiff & dense for my liking) and take seconds to apply, rather than spending ages blending liquid foundation with my fingers and washing messy hands afterwards. This is ideal for covering most of my redness when I have to leave the house in a rush – it feels so lightweight and fuss-free, and the Fair Honey shade is ideal for my light cool-toned skin. I think I’ve almost finished this one, so guess what I’ll be repurchasing when I’m away later this month!

I hope you love my Favourites for May! Have you tried any of these products? What are you loving this month? Let me know below, & if you’ve written a Favourites post too I’d love to read it!