Hi Everyone! Happy Friday! It took me a long time to finally sit down to write this post. I’ve been making a huge effort to go through all my beauty products before purchasing any new ones. Quite a challenge for a beauty blogger. One of the reasons this is an on-going process is due to all the deluxe samples I get from my Sephora Play Subscription Box (I reviewed the subscription here) or through Sephora Promo Codes. So, today I’ll break down five little beauty product empties. “Little” just seemed like a better word than “Deluxe Sample Sizes”
Ouai Treatment Mask – $14-$32
This mini is basically a restorative hair mask. I’ve seen conflicting instructions on how to apply this product. The Sephora Play box booklet says to apply to dry hair, leave in for 15-60 minutes and then rinse off. The actual packaging says to apply for 10-15 min after shampoo. I went with the packaging instructions since the Sephora ones didn’t seem to involve shampoo (wtf). The formula is surprisingly liquid which isn’t great if you aren’t careful in the shower. It also isn’t creamy and doesn’t feel as… slippery as other hair masks I’ve tried. I can’t even recall the smell which leads me to believe it was not distinct.
My hair was in fact soft and smooth after using this. And, the deluxe sample lasted for 3 uses.
Will purchase full size? Sadly no. Although my hair felt nice after using this, it didn’t feel $32 nicer. I can achieve the same results with this $3 product. Plus, I don’t like hanging out in the shower 10-15 min waiting for a mask to work.
This product is a dual face exfoliator – little beads physically exfoliate the skin while enzymes chemically remove dead cells and polish the skin. It claims to effectively combat acne, reduce discoloration, and polish skin for a smooth complexion. Tall claims for just an exfoliator.
What I like about this product is how little you need for your entire face. The beads in it are really small so it’s not as abrasive as other exfoliators I’ve tried. However, you can easily overdue it with this product. If I’m not careful, my skin will be pretty irritated after using it.
Will purchase full size? No. The plastic beads (polyethylene beads) in Exfolikate are pretty controversial right now. Although they are safe for human use, they are one of the major pollutants for marine life. And yes, I know so many other things are pollutants, but there are other exfoliators out there with less controversial ingredients for me to use.
Caudalie Vinosource & Vinoperfect Serum & Moisturizer – $79 & $39
I’m lumping these two empties together since they came in the same set. Not exactly sure if these were Sephora Playbox items or part of a promo code with purchase. I know they weren’t purchases because I’ve gotten the Vinoperfect serum in other promotions and I’ve never liked it enough to purchase a full size.
The Vinoperfect serum claims to improve the appearance of dark spots, promote even skin tone, and boost radiance. The Vinosource moisturizer claims to calm & soothe sensitive skin.
All I can say about this, is that I can’t confirm or deny these claims. I imagine that to see any improvement to dark spots you’d have to use a product longer than two weeks (which is around how long these lasted). What troubles me most is that the ingredient the brand claims to have all these benefits: viniferine hasn’t been extensively researched like other ingredients to help with hyper-pigmentation. For something that runs at $79 I’d rather go with something with more research behind it.
Will purchase full size? Definitely not. Again, I didn’t see any visible improvement to my skin while I used it. Plus, these didn’t feel particularly nice or moisturizing on my skin to entice me to give the full size a chance. I’m also not the biggest fan of the smell. It’s not overpowering, but I personally didn’t like it.
Side note: This is starting to feel like a beauty product fails post.
Sunday Riley Tidal Enzyme Water Cream – $22-65
I have a love-hate relationship with Sunday Riley products. I’ve discussed the Good Genes and Cleansing Balm on the blog before. Everything is just so freaking expensive. And there is a part of me that really wonders whether I’m actually paying for quality ingredients or I’m paying for the brand.
The Tidal Enzyme Water Cream is the smallest of all the sample sizes so I only got to use it 5-6 times before it ran out. As the name implies, the consistency is very watery. However, it is very moisturizing. In fact, it reminds me a bit of the Belif Aqua Bomb.
Looking at the ingredients, this has two types of hyaluronic acid which explains the plumping and moisturizing effect. It also has alpha-arbutin which is known to help hyper-pigmentation and several other brightening enzymes. As always, the problem with products like this is the jar packaging. Once a jar is opened, all the ingredients are exposed to air which often destabilizes them. Further, the risk of contaminating the product with your hands is pretty high.
Will purchase full size? I’m not sure yet. I just purchased another moisturizer that I have to get through before I decide.
Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream – $60
This is probably one of the products I’ve been most excited about in the Sephora Playbox. I’ve been eyeing this moisturizer for quite some time since it has great reviews and is an Allure Best of Beauty Winner. However, I held off since Drunk Elephant announced at some point last year that they were repacking the jar to come with a pump. We all know how I feel about jar packing at this point right? I highly dislike it.
The Lala Retro Whipped Cream is basically a whipped moisturizer. The formula is pretty thick but it somehow blends and is absorbed really quickly. It has 6 types of oils, plantain extract and antioxidants. Miraculously this did not break me out and it kept my skin moisturized.
As with all Drunk Elephant products, this is paraben, sulfate, phalate, fragrance and gluten free. It is not tested on animals and a portion of the proceeds go to the International Elephant Foundation. Generally, Drunk Elephant is known for the things they DON’T put in their products such as colorants, perfumes or fragrant essential oils.
Will purchase full size? I already did. What a surprise right? I’m a big fan of Drunk Elephants. It’s just one of those brands I can really get behind. The full size Lala Cream comes in a jar, but the top has a pump so you essentially push down the top and the product comes out.
Alright guys, that’s it for my five little beauty product empties. Have any of you tried these products? Should I give the ones I didn’t purchase a full size version another chance?
Have a great weeked!
*the individual product images above are via Shopstyle Collective. They are linked within the product name.