Tag Archives: garden girl

Sample Saturday – Garden Girl, a Weird Moisturizer, and Prada

Garden Girl skincare makes some of my favorite moisturizers, and my all-time favorite toner. They usually send a sample along with your order.

image

This cleanser is formulated for dry skin. It usually left my skin feeling a little tight, but it didn’t make me dry and never made me sensitive. I’m not super picky about cleansers though. I would definitely recommend this to someone with sensitive skin!

image

I used this, primarily, as a hand lotion. It has a fabulous citrus scent and was very hydrating!

image

DDF’s moisturizing dew was…weird. It had the texture of a milky gel, and was a little bit sticky. It sat okay under makeup, but Iwon’t be buying the full size.

image

There is some common ingredient in department store and high-end purfumes that end up going straight to my sinuses and makes me queasy. This one included.

Mask Monday – Glamglow

image

Oh, Glamglow. So expensive. So luxurious. But is it worth the hype?

For me, not so much.

Don’t get me wrong, these were nice masks, and neither of them irritated my skin. But I didn’t see the kinds of immediate benefits other bloggers and reviewers seem to experience.

I actually used these together – the Thirstymud on the dryer parts of my face and the Youthmud on the t-zone. The Thirstymud’s texture was smooth – somewhere between a gel cream and a primer. It left my face feeling slightly softer, but because of all of the hydrating products I layer on at night, I couldn’t really tell what it truly did. The best I can say is it couldn’t hurt, but I’m not sure it helped.

Because the Youthmud was full size, I used it much longer and in a couple of different ways. I didn’t like it as a spot treatment. It didn’t make impending or already established blemishes develop or heal any faster than nothing at all.

As an all-over mask, it sure did tingle! Not painfully so, but folks with more sensitive skin than mine might have a hard time. It dried fairly slowly. It contains…leafy bits? Some sort of plant material that’s meant to aid in exfoliation, but I didn’t notice much of a difference. I’m an avid exfoliater, though, so someone who’s a novice might.

Novices, however, might shy away from the price. I got mine at T.J. Maxx for $40.00, but Sephora sells it for almost $70.00.

If you’re looking for effectiveness over everything else, I wouldn’t shell out the money for Glamglow. I have had much better results from Boots Botanics Shine Away Ionic Clay mask, The Body Shop’s Tea Tree mask, and Garden Girl’s Cookies & Cream mask.

If you’re looking for a luxurious experience, though, Glamglow is an option. The jar is weighty, the box shiny and unusually-shaped. It calls you sexy. It has plant bits in it. The experience might be enough for some, but not for me.

Skin Care Sunday – Secret Key & Nature Republic

image

I got this toner in a Beauteque bag – which is the only non-nail polish related beauty bag I’m getting right now, which is why I keep mentioning it. It didn’t dry out my skin and was, indeed, soothing. But I don’t think I’ll seek it out on purpose. I missed my favorite from Garden Girl the whole time.

image

Keeping with the K-beauty theme, I finished an essence. I actually used this in the morning, right before moisturizer and SPF. Why not at night? I try not to use a lot of silicones overnight, and this has a moderate amount of dimethicone in it.

This was nice. It actually seemed to absorb well. And while it smelled very strongly of rose – a fragrance I do not appreciate – the scent didn’t linger all day.

De-stash & Trash – September 2015

I’ve been up to a whole bunch over the past few months! My job’s busy season, acclimating to two new bosses, helping my brother move, lots of extra traveling. Frankly, I’m a bit pooped!

I have finished up some interesting things in the meantime, though!

I finished and purged several mascaras last month.

image

Obviously, not enough to fill a whole collage.

Right-to-left, first off, there’s Mirenesse’s Secret Weapon. I enjoyed the fancy-pants packaging. It had a Christmas tree-shaped natural brush. I liked that it didn’t smudge on me, which is a problem I have with most mascaras. It gave me some good volume as well. I would definitely try this out again!

Next up is Smashbox’s Full Exposure. I got this at a CCO a year ago. It was way too wet at first, so I let it dry out a little. And then it was too dry. I think it was more my timing rather than the formula itself, but it was too wet for my taste right off.

Then there’s the trusty Clump Crusher. I was using it mostly to separate lashes after using another mascara.

Ulta’s Raincoat is a topper that makes regular mascaras waterproof. I can’t speak to the true waterproofiness (which is totally a word!) but it keeps some of my favorites from smudging under my eyes.

I loved Eyeko’s Sport waterproof. Until I tried to remove it. This stuff is bulletproof! It also has fibers, however, which are not so bulletproof. After wearing it the first few times, those fibers dusted off into and under my eyes causing a fair bit of discomfort. Not for contact lens wearers!

I used up a sample tube of my current fave, Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Lashes. It makes my lashes thick and fluttery. It transfers like a mother, though, so I always use it with the Raincoat.

And, finally, I tried out Julep’s volumizing mascara. I’m a Maven, so I do get discounts on their stuff from time to time. I haven’t had much luck with their makeup so far. This was thick and wet simultaneously. It just didn’t work for me.

image

I finished up a sample of the Marc Jacobs gel eye crayon in Blacquer. I liked this so much that I sprung for the holiday collection. It’s a dry formula, but once I got it on my watery allergy eyes, it went nowhere. I can even tightline with it.

image

I used up some peripheral makeup stuff. I use a disinfecting wipe on my brushes and to clean up my hands, etc afterward. The brand really doesn’t matter much.

I bought the Smashbox primer water right after it came out. And promptly regretted it. My skin didn’t like it as a primer. There wasn’t enough moisture involved. I used it, primarily, as a setting spray but I found that it smelled exactly like a hospital hallway. I didn’t appreciate that at all.

I used up a pack of Simple wipes and a couple of bottles of the micellar water, both of which I love and hoard.

image

I finished up a few serums. I tend to layer them, thinnest to thickest. There’s usually a vitamin c serum, a hydrating serum, and I rotate out the third depending on need. Garden Girl’s Superhero Serum is one of the latter. It is jam packed full of good stuff and my skin seems to like it. It smells a little bit like Flonase, though, as Janie-cat can attest to!

I also used a sample of the SKII essence cream. It’s not watery like the essence itself and it contains silicone which I try to avoid in my night products. So I used it as a primer and enjoyed it that way.

Mad Hippie has been my vitamin c serum of choice lately. Over time, my skin has been getting used to the serums I had been using, and this one is just the right strength. It gives me the slight flush of a product that’s doing something without burning the crap out of my skin. (Avalon Organics, I’m looking at your toner.)

The last serum I finished was the Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion. It had a slightly oily consistency, but absorbed right away. I had some flaking for a week at first, but that eventually stopped.

image

I finished off a sleeping mask. This saved my skin last winter, and I found that it’s light enough to use in the summer as well. It’s rather expensive, but it lasted almost 9 months.

image

I was really sad about this one because I love Garden Girl products. I bought it back in the spring and noticed a difference in my undereyes right away. That never happens. As the summer progressed, I began having trouble with puffiness, itchiness, and dryness. I narrowed it down to to the eye cream. I think the reaction seemed to happen when I was in the sun more than usual. (Yes, I was SPFing.)

image

I finished up some nail and hand care stuff, too. First off, is my most-used, most-loved stamping polish. I have never found a white to work as well as Konad’s. I cracked into my backup and will be stalking the site for a sale to replenish.

I used the last of Zoya’s Remove +. It’s expensive. I know. I don’t use it for anything other than to remove glitter polish. I don’t know what it is about the formula, but it works better than straight-up acetone for glitter for me.

I used the last of a Tony Moly peach hand cream that I got in a Beauteque bag. It smelled divine, but it felt a bit sticky.

I let go of a pump dispenser that stopped working, as well as a bottle of scented top coat that I had been using to swatch with.

image

And finally, I’ve decided to let go of a couple of shampoo/conditioner sets. I have thigh-length wavy, fine, dry, easily tangled hair. I also avoid silicones. The Andalou Naturals smelled lovely, but didn’t provide enough hydration.

On the other hands, I loved what the Shea Moisture did for my hair, but it smelled so strongly and the scent was so pervasive, it lasted through several washings with other shampoos.

That’s it for September! I’m excited I used up so much, but it’s a bit overwhelming all in one post. I may have to split it up next time!

De-stash & Trash – May 2015

May was so busy! We spent a lot of time traveling or preparing to travel and then I hurtled directly into our busy season at work. I guess, I can rest when I’m dead, right?

image

First off, my Real Techniques sponge/Beauty Blender experiment has a definitive result. I’ve spent the past six months alternating between the two sponges. Using them with the same foundations, cleaning them with the same soaps the same way. While I felt performance was comparable, I went through four Real Techniques sponges before my Beauty Blender started to wear out. Which means, I spent $4.00 more during that time on the inexpensive sponges than I did the high end.

When I first started using the Real Techniques sponges, they would last a good three months with daily use. Now I’m lucky to get six weeks with every-other-day use before they start to disintegrate. I hate to throw down $20 just for a sponge, but with the decline in Real Techniques’ quality, the Beauty Blender is actually the most economical choice.

image

I did a lot of traveling this month! I picked up a couple packs of these to use so I wouldn’t have to take a whole bottle of micellar water with me. They actually did a pretty good job removing face makeup and didn’t hurt my skin like most wipes do.

image

I also grabbed samples and things that were almost used used up to take with me on my travels. I got this gel moisturizer in a beauty box. It was very blue. It did moisturize, but I’m starting to learn that I don’t like gels very much for my own skin. It didn’t sit under makeup well, and it wasn’t moisturizing enough for nighttime.

image

Finished off a Jordana 24hr Made to Last eye pencil. It looks like there’s a lot left, but it wouldn’t sharpen anymore. I really, really like this pencil! It’s one of the few I’ve tried that doesn’t transfer on my watery allergy eyes when I tightline. It’s easy to use, inexpensive, and removes fairly easily.

image

I finally finished this concealer! I ended up cutting the tube open and scraping out the remainer once it got hard to squeeze out. I started to miss it after a couple of weeks and ended up getting another tube.

image

I actually finished off a couple of these this last month. I have them in a few spots in the house. Vanity, bedside table, living room, bathroom. My daily routine isn’t always routine. I love this stuff and how gentle and effective it is!

image

This was okay. I love me some serums and this one was as effective as anything else I use. But while most other serums take me 2-3 months to use up, this one only lasted about three weeks. And it was spendy, even at TJ Maxx prices.

image

This was last year’s sunscreen. Time to replace it!

image

Good old Coty Airspun unscented. This did the job, but I found an Indie powder foundation that I like for that purpose as well as for setting. So I probably won’t repurchase.

image

So, I my skin pretty much burns right through SPF no matter how much I apply. I got some sun while I was out of town and ended up dark enough to wear this and give it a good test. I was surprised at how oily my t-zone was after wearing this for a while! It might be a good full-coverage option for winter for me.

image

Got through a bottle of Rainbow Honey cuticle oil in the Frozen Flame scent. I really enjoyed it!

image

Finished off a couple of toners. The first was nice! It felt refreshing, tingly, and hydrating at the same time. It had a natural herbal scent to it. I’ve always had good luck with Andalou Naturals.

image

Garden Girl’s Soothing Harmony is my favorite toner so far. I like to try other things, but I keep coming back to this one.

image

I switched out my Clarisonic head this month. This was the radience one. I definitely didn’t like it as much as the sensitive. The bristles are longer and softer and they bunched together. I had to do some scrubbing to feel like it was effective.

image

I de-stashed some skin products. The Andalou Naturals BB Cream is pretty much done. L’oreal Visible Lift had a gritty texture I didn’t care much for. The sunscreen is expired in that tinted moisturizer. I never did get the Konad CC cream to work for me. It just made me look orange. And the Manic Panic white foundation was a good idea, but my skin reacted badly to it. I’ve since found other white foundations I like for mixing that don’t burn.

Mask Roundup – March 2015

Had a rigorous masking month!

image

I didn’t finish this, but I felt it was noteworthy. It’s my first sleeping mask, which has now pushed me down the slippery slope of layering and multi-step skincare regimes.

When I woke up, I was covered in skin flakes. My face, my pillowcase, the t-shirt I slept in. It was kind of icky. Once I washed my face, though, my skin looked bright and clear. I’m not sure if it was supposed to exfoliate quite like that. I’ve used it several times since and the results have not been as dramatic. But I do think it has done lovely things for my skin when used a couple times a week.

image

These were nice, but I have resigned myself to the fact that I shouldn’t use eye patches. They’re very effective on my undereyes. But I have small eyes, and the patches are usually large enough to cover the tops of my cheeks where I am most sensitive. Every single patch I have ever used has caused some irritation there. There were some metal-infused ones that lasted precisely 23 seconds before I had to fling them off and rinse my face.

image

I’m familiar with the My Beauty Diary Natto masks. They’re very saturated and drippy. I have started saving the leftover essences from the pouches in little plastic condiment containers for an extra boost at the beginning of my skincare regime. I don’t know if it does any good, but it can’t hurt!

image

This was nice. The beads weren’t sharp or uncomfortable, and the mask itself seemed moisturizing enough.

image

I regret that this went bad. Note to self: natural products are to be used first!

image

I got some of these in a Korean beauty box a couple of months ago. The top two are sheet masks, which turned out to be very nice. The bottom two were hydrogel masks, which I felt kind of dubious about at first since the only one I have ever used was a Dr. Jart one that I didn’t particularly like. These carried a lot more solution in them, and have changed my mind about hydrogels in general.

image

More of my favorite cheap and cheerful staple masks!

image

Can we just take a minute to appreciate the adorableness of this Go! Pinkgo Girl packaging? The masks themselves are very thin but manage to carry a lot of essence. They adhere well to the face, too, which I enjoy because I like the freedom of being able to walk around and do other things while I’m masking.

image

And I tried out a couple of Sephora’s masks. By-and-large I feel most sheet masks Sephora carries are overpriced. But I liked these. They were big enough to cover the periphery of my face, which is a rare thing.

That’s it for March!

De-stash & Trash – March 2015

So, there are just a few things that I moved out of the stash last month.

image

The first was a hyaluronic serum from a brand I can’t identify since I’ve long discarded the outside package. (Bad blogger!) It was a random TJ Maxx find, anyway. It didn’t blow me away with its sheer awesomeness, but it did provide a bit of a hydration boost over the winter. It had a dropper, and the serum had an almost jelly-like consistency, so it was difficult to get all the product out. Even with a spatula. I don’t think I would recommend it simply because of the waste involved. Unless you’re willing to take a saw to the bottle to get it open. Which I was not.

image

This was a sample had lying around. I tried it tentatively (because rose and I typically don’t get along) but it didn’t irritate me at all. I used it mostly to wet eyeshadows and as a finishing spray to keep things from caking. I don’t think I would actually pay for it, but it was nice while I had it.

image

This cream cleanser was in my project product, but I didn’t finish it. The last day I used it, I noticed some residue under the lid of the cap. I opened up the bottle and discovered mold. Way before the expiration date. Now, I know Burt’s a natural brand and he doesn’t have a lot of the preservatives other things do. But neither does Garden Girl, Nature’s Gate, or Andalou Naturals which are brands I regularly use. And I did keep this in my bathroom, where there’s more moisture. Right alongside my Garden Girl, Nature’s Gate, and Andalou Naturals products, which haven’t grown mold. I checked. Then I checked other Burt’s products I had and found mold in a shampoo and a moisturizer, the latter of which was not kept in a bathroom. Burt and I may have to part ways.

image

I finished my favorite holy-grail-for-now shampoo, and along with it, almost four bottles of conditioner. It makes my hair feel clean, soft, and shiny. No matter what I experiment with, I go back to this every time.

image

My Real Techniques complexion sponge began to disintegrate and leave tiny orange pieces of sponge behind when I used it. It seems like this is happening earlier and earlier – this one kicked it after only a month of every-other-day use. I’ve got another one that I’m rotating between a beauty blender. I’m very interested to see how they eventually measure up.

image

I reached the end of a sample tube of this. It does amazing things for my lashes, but isn’t very practical unless I top it with something waterproof or I’m only wearing it for a couple of hours. It smudges on me like crazy!

image

Had to throw out the Julep lip gloss I’d been working through because the container broke. It just snapped while it was in my jeans pocket. I’d gotten about halfway through and was really enjoying it!

image

Finished up a 500ml bottle of Bioderma.

image

Yes, that is the remnants of the a word on my hand. I can't remember what. Penguin, maybe? But we have to remember a lot of random things in a library!

And, finally, I used up a sample tube of Cargo’s Better Than Waterproof mascara. I liked this, for the most part. It’s a tubing mascara, which I’ve been seeking out more and more. It made my eyes a little sensitive when I removed it once in a while, but it volumized better than NYX’s Doll Eyes Waterproof