PRODUCT EMPTIES REVIEW: Skincare, Hair Essentials

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I’ve been posting lots of beauty products on my Instagram in the past year, but never fully reviewed them in depth because my opinions often change from when I start using a product to when I finish. After about six months to a year, I finally finished the 11 products shown above and now I’m excited to share what I thought of each. Disclaimer: nine of the products above were received as gifts for testing purposes, but the opinions below are unbiased and my own.

(1) Cetaphil Cleanser
$9.49 (4/5 stars)

This cleanser is *such* a classic (along with the lotion). This is the cleanser that is recommended by dermatologists for people with sensitive skin (i.e. eczema). It is very light and does a great job getting rid of slight dirt on the face. I use it in the mornings to remove overnight oils and leftover lotion on my face and find it to be so refreshing. I would not recommend this for makeup removal because it does not give your face a deep cleanse.

(2) COOLA Classic Face Sport SPF 50 - White Tea
$32 (3.5/5 stars):

This quickly became my daily daytime moisturizer because of its SPF coverage.  Sunscreen is so important because it both prevents skin cancer and wrinkles! This lotion has a medium thickness and smells oh so good. During the days that I was especially oily, I felt like this lotion caused me to break out slightly. Otherwise, I liked it very much and wish I had more!

(3) Origins A Perfect World(TM) Creamy Body Cleanser with White Tea
$32 (4/5 stars):

This body wash seriously smells so good and feels luxurious to use. I also felt extremely pampered every time I used it because it comes in a squeeze bottle similar to a facial cleanser. The consistency resembles a facial cleanser and I felt like I was getting a real deep clean every time I used it. I used the body wash with a loufa and a tiny bit of soap foamed up nicely. This lasted me a long time and I miss having such a fresh smelling body wash.

(4) Quip Toothbrush/Toothpaste
~ $10 (3/5 stars):

I used up the Quip toothpaste, but also wanted to comment on the Quip toothbrush that is now out of batteries (so technically used up also?). The Quip toothpaste comes with directions on how much to squeeze. With a pea size, a good amount of toothpaste foams up in the mouth. It is minty and fresh. However, the toothpaste does not indicate any whitening or enamel protection and I am not sure how great it is for my teeth. I would still choose another toothpaste over the Quip one. As for the toothbrush, I rather like the subtle vibration and its rubber bristles. It does not rotate nearly as much as an electronic toothbrush and I am honestly not sure how well it works. It is aesthetically pleasing and comes with a nice holder. I have nothing against it, and will continue to use it.

(5) Carbon Coco Toothbrush/Toothpaste
$45 for the kit (2/5 stars):

This brand makes its products using activated charcoal, which is all the rage these days. I received the toothbrush, toothpaste, and whitening charcoal (not pictured). The toothbrush is nice and soft and I use it as my travel toothbrush. It has black bristles to match the activated charcoal. The toothpaste is also black and it has a sweet taste to it. Again, it does not indicate any teeth enamel protection and I was not convinced it was better than the standard toothpaste brands (Crest, Sensodyne, etc.). As for the whitening paste, it honestly scared me. The minute you put it on, your entire teeth turns black. It is rather hard to wash off and the charcoal gets stuck between my teeth. I did not see a sudden improvement of whitening and I did not use it enough to report back on how well it works. I still prefer the unnatural way of whitening – Crest whitening strips (not sponsored). Overall, it was very fun to try but not sure if I would purchase.

(6) Aveda pramasana(TM) Purifying Scalp Cleanser
$35 (3.5/5):

I didn’t realize I had a “dirty” scalp until I went into Aveda for a scalp check-up. They used a camera that zoomed deep into my scalp and printed some photos. Based on the images, I had hair product residue stuck on my scalp and spotty dandruff covering it. Luckily, this hair treatment deep cleanses the scalp. You put it on your scalp before shampooing and scrub your scalp gently. I didn’t check my scalp after using it (I need to go soon), but I did feel like, regardless of whether or not it worked, that it made me pay more attention to my hair washing technique. It became a habit to massage my scalp every time I washed my hair and I do feel like there was less oil at the roots and I could go an extra day without washing my hair. The in-shower treatment also came with a post-shower treatment. I used it together (again not sure how well it actually works). 

(7) Moroccanoil Hair Treatment Oil
$15 - 44 (3/5 stars):

I already wrote a blog post about this product a year ago (read here), but wanted to update my opinion about this product after using it completely. I feel like the Moroccanoil line works best when you use it along with the other products (i.e. shampoo, conditioner, etc.). Towards the second half of the bottle when I swapped my shampoo and conditioner for non-Moroccanoil products,  I did not feel like the oil improved the softness of my hair. It kept my hair moisturized, but a little stiff. 

(8) Pur-lisse Blue Lotus Seed Mud Mask
$48
(4/5 stars)

This face masks really gives you a deep clean! This is one of those – leave on for ten mins and wash off masks. The minute I put this mask on my face, I feel a sharp tingliness in my “problem” areas. The tingliness does hurt at times and it is the only reason for docking off a star) It is also used with all natural material and I felt safe using it. The mask also contains little grain pieces that exfoliate your skin. I loved using this after I came home from traveling because it does such a deep cleanse of your face. I wish I had more of this product!

(9)  Sisley Paris Botanical Floral Toning Lotion
$103 (4.5/5 stars)

This toner is on the pricier side, but I had the chance to try out the sample version (which honestly lasted me a good few months). Not sure if this was the intended use – but it did such a good job removing remaining makeup after my initial cleanse. Every time I used a cotton pad with toner on it, my cotton pad would come back tan from the foundation. When I tried using a cotton pad the second time (I tried both the toner and other makeup removers), it returned almost white. This is definitely a luxurious product with a steep price tag, but I definitely enjoyed using it and wish I had more.

(10)(11) Ole Hendrickson Pure Truth(TM) Youth Activating Oil/Truth Serum
$45/$48 (4.5/5 stars):

I first heard about the Ole Hendrickson Oil/Truth Serum Duo when SongOfStyle’s Aimee Song was raving about them on her YouTube channel. When I had the opportunity to try them out, I knew I had to jump on the boat. I loved the products together, but not so much separately. When used together, I felt like I woke up in the morning with fresh skin. I also used it on my boyfriend’s skin (which has spots of eczema) and he did not have any reactions. Rather, his skin looked almost normal in the morning. However, the oil can be very thick when used separately and does not combine well with other products. Likewise, I do not see the Truth Serum results as nicely in the morning when I combine it with other lotions. Overall, I would recommend it even though it is on the pricier side.  

I hope you found this review helpful! I had a lot of fun writing it. There are still a lot more products I am trying out at the moment so expect another empties post in about six months. Comment down below if there are any products you want me to try and write about!

xx Alice