First things first, yes that's technically a photo of my garbage. I tend to think that empties videos on YouTube work a bit better than a blog post but since I don't make YouTube videos, this is what we're working with. The best part about empties is seeing what products people have finished til the end, what they thought of them after using them for a while and most importantly, whether or not they'd spend the money on them again. Finishing makeup is extremely rare for me so this is mostly skincare but hopefully you like these mini reviews and find them helpful.
Cleansers & Eye Makeup Removers
L'Oreal Gentle Eye Makeup Remover - I feel like this had a moment back in the day when it was a lot harder to get your hands on Biodema and everyone said it was a much cheaper alternative. Not sure about the pricing in other countries but you only get 125ml of product for $13.99 and if you buy Bioderma at Priceline (which is by no means the cheapest way) it's $29.99 for 250ml so considering you're paying about the same I'd much rather go for Bioderma. I also found that because this formula contains oil some of it often rolled off my cotton pad as I was pouring it on instead of it all absorbing in and that's a hassle I'd rather do without. I wouldn't buy this again.
Vichy Micellar Solution - this is a nice micellar water, nothing above and beyond but certainly within the realm of Bioderma. I wouldn't necessarily go out of my way for it but I'd happily use it again.
The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Oil - this is an awesome, affordable cleansing oil and I loved using it. My only issue is that you need to hold the bottle in one hand and pump it into the other because if you think you can just pump one handed it'll fly everywhere and show you who's boss. But I can live with that and I'll almost definitely pick it up again one day.
Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm (mini) - this is a beautiful smelling, thick, luxurious cleansing balm with a price tag to match. I'd happily use it again but since I like trying out different cleansers at that price point I'm more likely to pick up something new.
REN Clearcalm Clay Cleanser - a clay based cleanser isn't particularly common so curiosity was a large part of my reason for buying it. It's a nice cleanser though, good for in the mornings or as a second cleanse in the evening. I didn't love the smell and it didn't wow me enough to race out and buy it again but I did enjoy it and would recommend it if you're curious like I was.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane - this is a basic, unscented, no-frills moisturiser that I feel like I can count on if I'm trying out new skincare and want to make sure everything else is as gentle as possible and won't break me out. Next time Priceline has one of their 40% off skincare sales I'll definitely be buying it again.
La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo+ - this is my third tube and I'm halfway through my fourth already and have another waiting to go in my drawer. I love this as a moisturiser or as a treatment under my moisturiser if I feel like I need more hydration on top. I really feel like this makes a difference in terms of unclogging and evening out the texture of my skin, particularly around my chin. If I stop using this after a few days I notice the difference so I really wouldn't be without it.
Grown Hydra-Repair Day Cream with Camelia & Geranium Blossom - this is actually a really lovely moisturiser. It's a huge tube and despite the fact that it contains lots of different plant oils it never broke me out or made me excessively oily. Because it's such a big tube and it lasted so long I feel like I'm ready to try something new but I probably would pick this up again one day.
Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair - a quick google will turn up about a million in-depth reviews of this product so I won't go into too much detail. I did really enjoy it and I would probably buy it again one day but for now I'm more curious about some other serums so I can hold off for a while.
Indeed Labs Hydraluron - I think this is great for what it is - a hydrating serum to be used under moisturiser or (as I preferred) over the top of another serum. Ultimately if you don't have (or want to spend) $150 for a high end serum or if you're young enough to feel like you don't need one yet then this is a great option. The reason high end serums are so expensive is because of the ingredients they use and/or because they can tackle several issues at once. This is $34.99 and it won't fade pigmentation or obliterate wrinkles, but as promised, it will hydrate and plump up your skin. So if you're dry or dehydration prone this is very functional and affordable. I don't have dry skin and these days I'm more likely to buy something around the $150 mark but I'd have no hesitation recommending this if it suits your needs.
First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads - I picked up a half size of these in the States and I actually liked them a lot more than I thought I would. I don't like that with 60 pads in the full size if you were to use them every day that's still only two months worth (or one month if you use them morning & night) but I found them to be really effective and I do plan on buying them again soon.
Mecca Cosmetica To Save Face SPF30 (mini) - I really like this for my daily SPF and I'm already using my second mini tube. It is a chemical SPF and not physical so keep that in mind if that means anything to you, and I do keep a higher SPF on hand for days when I'm actually doing something outdoors instead of just going to work, but it's a really lovely consistency and I enjoy this product a lot.
Jurlique Rose Hand Cream - I adore this and I've already got another one. It's my favourite hand cream ever!
La Roche-Posay Micellar Solution (mini) - this is another decent micellar water like the Vichy one but it's no cheaper (ml for ml) than Bioderma. I'd use it again or maybe buy it if I found it on sale but wouldn't go out of my way for it.
Nuxe Micellar Water (mini) - now this micellar water is different from the rest and not in a good way. It's soft pink in colour and it smells like roses but it also smears eyeliner all around my eyes instead of removing it properly so I definitely wouldn't recommend this and I absolutely wouldn't buy it again.
Clarins One-Step Facial Cleanser (mini) - this was a bi-phase eye makeup remover but I don't think it performed particularly well and I wouldn't buy it again.
Soap & Glory Hand Food (mini) - a nice little hand cream with the classic soap & glory scent - can't complain!
Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm - I think I've talked about this enough times by now, I've already got another one I'm using and I'll probably always have a pot of it around.
Sunday Riley Good Genes (sample) - I got about 5 uses out of this little guy which is more than I thought I would. Unfortunately it didn't change my life in that short window of time, but I won't hold that against it. I'm really curious about Sunday Riley's skincare and I think once I'm in need of a new serum/oil it'll be one from her line.
Clinique Clinical Solutions Acne Clearing Gel (sample) - this lil baby tube actually lasted me months. It's a basic salicylic acid spot treatment that worked very well for me. Unfortunately Clinique is one of the biggest offenders of price discrimination in the Australian market so while I would use this again I may also look around for something cheaper.
Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder - I love this powder, it's really lightweight, not at all cakey, super slim packaging and it helps control my oily skin. I'm on my second one already.
Jordana Best Lash Extreme Volume Mascara - this one got a lot of hype on YouTube a while back and it's only a few dollars so I picked it up in the States but I found that it transferred to my under-eye area throughout the day (probably that oily skin) so I wouldn't pick this up again.
Maybelline the Falsies Mascara - this one transferred on me too and I'm not a huge fan of the wand either. I prefer plastic over bristle wands as they tend to separate my eyelashes better so unfortunately this was a bit of a miss for me too.