When I was in Japan this past winter, I specifically wanted to find some complexion products with high SPF. The year prior, I had tried a little complexion set from Naturaglacé with sample sizes in it, and I’d found that the products seemed really solid. So when I found this year that the brand had a whole new display at Tokyu Hands with an expanded product range (at least compared to what I’d previously seen) and completely new packaging design, I spent some time with the testers and purchased the Moist BB Cream with SPF 43/PA+++ (¥2800 or about $25 for 30g) and Emollient Cream Foundation with SPF 39/PA+++ (¥4800 or about $43 for 27g).
I like to find good, gentle cleansers that leave skin feeling clean, soft, and hydrated, and I recently decided to try the Superfood Antioxidant Cleanser from the Bay Area’s Youth to the People, a relatively new offering at Sephora. On one hand, I think that plastering “youth” and “kale” on a product reflects a California trendiness that’s a little difficult for me to take seriously. On the other hand, I think the pared down product line and founders’ philosophy as it’s communicated in the marketing language seems pretty trustworthy. The two founders say that they aimed to create a “modern, straightforward, vegan skincare line good for all skin types and everyday use. Basically, something we’d want to use ourselves.”
I’m glad more people on the internet have started to talk about the fact that 15% off at Sephora really doesn’t go that far. However, I still partake and enjoy. I try not to go crazy, but I’m definitely kind of hooked on the twice-yearly sale endorphins. During the sales, I typically buy just a little more than the normal routine stuff and take the chance to try new products. This time around I came away with makeup and skincare from Fenty Beauty, DR. JART+, Becca, Laura Mercier, Farmacy, Herbivore, and Sephora Collection.
When it comes to DECIEM skincare, I’ve explored a lot of the affordable options from The Ordinary but it took me a while to try out any of their other product lines. To get started, I jumped on one of the Black Friday bundles that they offered, which was this four-piece hydration skincare set from NIOD. It included the Hydration Vaccine, Fractionated Eye Contour Concentrate, Survival 0, and Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex. Later on, I added a couple more things from DECIEM to my collection, including the Hylamide Hydra-Density Mist, and I thought it’d make sense to talk about all five of those products at one time.
I first learned about the DR. JART+ Ceramidin Cream ($48 for 50 ml/1.7 oz.) from Caroline Hirons, and more recently have seen lots of other people on the internet enjoying DR. JART+ products. The Shake and Shot Rubber Masks have been getting a lot of attention and look really fun, although they are fairly expensive for single-use products. Anyway, the Ceramidin product line looks like it’s made to be kind to sensitive, red, and imbalanced or dry skin, and this cream has a lot of interesting and attractive ingredients in it. Plus, it comes with a cool metal tool right in the box to help you squeeze every bit of the cream of it out of the tube.
Malaya Organics is a brand I first encountered in the holiday market at Grand Central Station in November when I was shopping for gifts, and I had the privilege of speaking with the brand’s founder at that time. I believe Malaya is based in Brooklyn but their collection is available online, and they offer a fairly small and carefully considered collection of products for the face, hair, and body. I purchased travel sized versions of the Moisturizing Body Oil in the Woods scent and the Rejuvenating Face Serum to give them a try.
The Ordinary Alpha Lipoic Acid 5%, Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane, Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, and Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3%By Erin on February 24, 2018
I have thoroughly tried four more serums from The Ordinary, and these are all under the $10 mark. Two are definite favorites from The Ordinary line, and two were somewhat disappointing. I love the low price point, which allows me to try lots of new active ingredients for the first time and see how they work for my skin, and I also really enjoy that the Ordinary’s products often have very no-nonsense ingredients. This time around I will be reviewing the Alpha Lipoic Acid 5%, Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane, Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, and Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3%.
I treated myself to a couple of Clarins products for normal-to-dry skin during the last Sephora sale, including the Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs and this moisturizer called the Hydra-Essentiel Silky Cream. It’s one of the heavier options from the Clarins library of creams, and I could swear I’ve tried a sample packet of it before, though quite a lot of time has passed since. I enjoy the look and feel of Clarins, and while not every product I try is a slam dunk I’m generally drawn to brand when I feel like buying something a little fancy.
I haven’t meant to be silent on the blog for so long, but I recently had surgery and took for granted how unproductive I’d be while recovering at home. I thought I’d get back into it with an easygoing empties review. I go through a lot of skincare products on an ongoing basis, and I have a box full of stuff that I’ve used up over the past few months. Particularly because it’s a cold time of year, I have a lot of products for dry skin, and I’ve really had a good experience with most of them.
I have the privilege to be able to travel to Asia on a fairly regular basis since my husband’s family lives in Taiwan. For the past few years we have visited them around the holidays, and this was our third year where we decided to stop in Tokyo for a few days before returning home to New York. It’s taken me about that long to get really comfortable with shopping in Tokyo in terms of finding shopping areas I enjoy, trying brands I’m curious about, and identifying products that spark my curiosity. It’s not so much that I had a set shopping list, but that I’ve gotten better at maximizing feelings of fun and success and minimizing feelings of aimlessness and confusion while shopping.