My husband and I just came back from our second trip to Tokyo, where we spent New Year’s in the middle of visiting both of our families for the holidays. Having gained some level of familiarity with Japanese cosmetics brands since our first visit last year, and having restrained my cosmetic purchases fairly well over the past year, I basically went in feeling ready to buy some stuff. The added bonus was learning about and having my first experience with fukubukuro, or “lucky bags” of products that lots of Japanese retailers put out for New Year’s sales.
Over 2016 I generally reduced the amount of cosmetics that I purchased and really scrutinized new releases, which means that a Beauty Loon year-end wrap up can be quite succinct and focused. There were a few specific brands that became new loves for me, so you’ll see some brands repeat in my product picks, and I’ve gone ahead and broken down the favorites into 10 product categories. Ok, let’s go!
After trying and enjoying the toner and serum from Andalou Naturals’ relatively new coconut-themed Quenching skincare line, I returned to Whole Foods to take a look the moisturizers. The moisturizing products I’ve previously tried from the brand’s rose line hadn’t been quite heavy enough for my skin, so I decided to go for the coconut night cream. Officially called the Coconut Milk Youth Firm Night Cream, this one includes coconut milk amino and essential fatty acids to hydrate skin and improve the appearance of skin tone and texture.
I’ve really been exploring a lot of skincare from Kiehl’s over the past several months, evidenced by posts here and here. While I fortunately can’t say any of the products have been complete misses for me, I definitely have some favorites that I’m very excited about. I’m even at a point where I can chat about 5 of my favorite products covering 5 different product categories, so it seems like a great time to talk about the stuff I’m really enjoying.
I’ve been going through a phase of spending over the past few weeks and have a good amount of skincare, makeup, and body care that’s recently come into my life. Most of it is new to me and I think a lot of it is really fun. I have products from Kiehl’s, Club Clio, and Muji that I’m particularly excited about.
This past spring when I ran out of night cream, I ended up taking advantage of one of The Body Shop’s many sales to purchase two products from their Nutriganics range: the Smoothing Night Cream and the Smoothing Eye Cream. I’ve never tried the Nutriganics products before but have enjoyed The Body Shop’s moisturizers in the past, and was excited to try some of the brand’s fancier products. They’re both under $30 so even though they’re more expensive than other TBS skincare, they’re definitely still within reach for me, and they’re an even better deal on sale.
It looks like Derma MD has been at work formulating new products and updating their website. I’ve previously tried a pretty large collection of of their skincare products, which you can read about here, and I recently received a couple of their new releases: the Sensitive Pearl Cleanser for hydrating skin and reducing redness, and the charcoal mud T.H.E. Purifying Mask, which features a handful of different alpha hydroxy acids, charcoal, and licorice root to reduce oil and minimize pores, fine lines, and darkened pigmentation.
This is a fun review for me, because I always get excited about nice, affordable, naturally-oriented skincare products. OZ Naturals is a brand that’s new to me, and I’ve had the chance to try out their Hyaluronic Acid Serum, which is formulated to hydrate skin and diminish fine lines.
I have three thick, multi-purpose skin balms that I think make for interesting points of comparison. It all started with Egyptian Magic, which I’ve previously praised on the blog, and I later branched out to trying other less expensive but similarly conceived products from Alaffia and The Honest Company to see if I could save some money while treating my skin. These are all natural products with simple formulations that nourish the skin, including face, lips, and body. I ended up with distinct thoughts about all three of them, so I wanted to lay them all out.
It probably shouldn’t have taken me this long to try some Kiehl’s products, but now that I’m in New York City I’ve passed through their flagship store in the East Village at a couple of times and have started to explore product range. Their flagship store is actually their original location that dates back to 1851 (a date that’s proudly proclaimed on all of their product packaging) when it was a pharmacy, and is a really cool place to visit.