Tuesday, 26 May 2020

Shopping My Stash - Marc Jacobs Beauty La Marc Lip Cremes

Since I'm not exactly big on leaving the house at the best of times, unlike a lot of people I haven't really found the whole lockdown thing that hard. Obviously I've missed spending real time with my friends and family but thanks to chronic illness, it seems as though I've spent most of my adult life preparing for 2020.

Unfortunately I haven't been as productive over the last few months as I would have liked, I haven't learnt a new language or a new skill, and I haven't even made any banana bread, but I'm still counting it as a win, I'm still here and I have managed to sort out a bit more of my junk. I've filled charity bags, and storage bags with clothes, I've thrown the odd thing in the bin and I've also rediscovered quite a few beauty products that I'd pretty much forgotten about. If I'm honest I'm not particular proud of that, I don't think that forgetting about what were sometimes expensive things is a good thing, but every cloud as they say, and with the lack of shopping opportunities at the moment, I've been able to shop my stash, and rediscover some 'new' and some unloved products. 

Originally released as part of the 2017 Holiday Collection, I originally bought this Marc Jacobs Beauty set from John Lewis, in the after Christmas sale, where it was reduced from £37, down to £25.90. Although this set itself is now long gone, and John Lewis no longer seem to sell the full Marc Jacobs Beauty range, most of the products in this set are still available in the full size elsewhere so I think I can still justify talking about it x

I love Marc Jacobs as a brand and I'm lucky enough to own a few pieces including clothing, shoes and accessories from the Marc By Marc Jacobs line, and like so many people I'm a huge fan of both the Daisy and Lola fragrance lines, but up until late 2017 / early 2018 I'd never tried anything from the Marc Jacobs Beauty range, so where better to start than with a sale item.

The set that I bought was the Marc Jacobs Cat's Meow Five Piece Petite Le Marc Lip Creme Collection. There is no way of getting round it with this one, depending on your fashion sense, or personal taste, you will either love this packaging with passion, or you'll think it's as tacky as hell - animal print, and especially coloured animal print like this really does polarise opinions but personally I love it, bring it on!

The set came boxed and inside the box is a hard sided purse / clutch / cosmetic bag with a smooth, vinyl like feel. The purse is predominantly in a gorgeous deep, cerise pink glitter. The front of the purse features a matte black, and purple leopard print design, and there is a gold tone, metal Marc Jacobs logo in the centre of the purse. It features a zip around fastening, and the zip pull also features gold tone hardware, and a large black fabric tassel with plaited and braided detailing.

Unzip the clutch and you're greeted by 5 little lipsticks resting lovingly on a black velour covered, removable plastic tray. The clutch is lined in a black polyester fabric, and it features a small fabric 'Marc Jacobs' logo. Take out the tray and you've got plenty of room inside to use it as a clutch bag. I can easily fit my iPhone X, a lipstick, cards, and even a small coin purse inside.

As fabulous as the packaging is that wasn't the real reason that I bought this set, despite what you may be thinking, it was actually for the lipsticks inside. The set contains 5 x mini 1.7g lipsticks from the Le Marc Lip Creme range. Packaged in very similar black and silver packaging to their full size cousins, these lipsticks are cruelty free, and are also free from parabens, sulphates, and phthalates.

Designed to be pigmented, hydrating and long wearing, these lipsticks contain antioxidant rich seaberry extract, cocoa butter, jojoba, avocado, and olive oils, and shea butter.

The set contains 4 of the most popular shades in the La Marc Lip Creme range, Goddess, J'Adore, Infamous and Sonic Truth, and one exclusive shade Currant Mood. The shades range from red to plum, to pink and two different shades of nude.
From Left To Right - 202 Goddess, 272 Currant Mood, 230 J'Adore, 228 Infamous, and 244 Sonic Truth

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Creme - 202 Goddess 

Officially described as a vivid maraschino red with cool magenta undertones, Goddess is a classic cool toned red. As with all stand out, and vibrant shades, you need to be a bit careful with your application technique as there really is no room for error. Despite that the small size actually made fairly easy to apply, and it was pretty easy to stay with in the lines.

Does it stay on? Well if you kiss someone immediately after putting it on it's going to transfer, and you're going to end up with that jammy doughnut esq look. I can promise you that I haven't been kissing anyone in the pic that you can see above but it's still smudged ever so slightly. 

Whilst it does seem to transfer at least when you first apply it, once it's on by and large it stays put at least for an hour or so on me anyways, before gradually fading down to a paler stain, and resolutely clinging on to the drier parts of my lips.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Creme - 272 Currant Mood 

Next up another strong, confident colour, and as I said this shade Currant Mood was exclusive to this kit in this formulation. Whilst it is available in the Poutliner Long Wear Lip Pencil format it doesn't appear in the regular La Marc Lip Creme range.

Described as a deep merlot, it's a fabulously, vampy deep berry, plum shade - there is no doubt that this is a statement colour, and it definitely isn't one for shrinking violets. It another shade that you have to be careful with, again the application was super smooth but again you need perfection with colours like this especially when you have a paler skin tone like mine because you can literally see every mistake and smudge. I think that's definitely one advantage of the petite size, the smaller bullet actually makes application easier and more precise, you can take it right up to the lip line and even use it as an all be it slightly thick lip liner.

It's always more noticeable when darker or more vibrant shades start to fade, and within an hour the plummy depth had gone, and it had left a nice deep pink stain on the lips which unfortunately disappeared after eating and drinking. This definitely isn't a shade that I would normally wear but I think I can pull it off with my skin tone, for a night out, or for when I fancy making a real statement.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Creme - 230 J'Adore

This next shade kind of bridges the gap between two colour families, the vibrant more out there shades, and the neutral more every day shades. Marc Jacobs Beauty describe J'Adore as rich mocha with cool pink undertones, for me it's very much a rich, almost coffee toned nude brown. 

As much as I love a nude lipstick, being paler and having much more of a pink undertone to my skin, I tend to shy away from richer, browner nudes like this one, but despite it's obvious depth and warmth there is a bit of pink in there and that's probably why I think it works on me. Again it wore well and faded down to a paler nude stain, before disappearing completely.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Creme - 228 Infamous

The final two shades are probably the most me - they're the most neutral and the most wearable shades. Thanks to my facial paralysis my lips as you can blatantly see aren't even or symmetrical, and to be honest that's probably why I've traditionally shied away from deeper, brighter or more noticeable lip colours, I used to hate drawing attention to my imperfections but whilst I am getting braver, lip colours like Infamous will always be at the top of the pile.

When it came to my favourite colour in this set, it really was a toss up between this one, and Sonic Truth, but Infamous just shades it. Described as a soft muted, warm peony pink, Infamous is a lovey neutral pink shade. It isn't too bright, it isn't too pile, it isn't too warm and it isn't too cool, in my opinion it's just perfect. It really is one of those everyday shades, you could wear it with a pair of jeans and a t-shirt or with a pretty summer dress and sandals, it's not the most in your face shade, but it's just so wearable. Again it faded down gradually with talking, eating and drinking, leaving a slight pale pink stain on the lips.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Creme - 244 Sonic Truth

Finally a true nude, Sonic Truth - "a creamy nude that compliments fair to cool skin tones'. Sonic Truth is a lovely pink toned, pale nude. Shades like this are perfect if your hands are a bit wobbly, it's neutral enough that the odd application mistake probably won't matter that much on a lot of skin tones. I wasn't sure about it in the bullet but once it's on, again it's perfect for my cool pink toned skin. I've owned a lot of nude lipsticks that quite frankly made me look ill, but this definitely isn't one of them, although if you have a darker, or more olive complexion I do think that this could potentially look a bit ashy or corpse like.

Obviously there isn't such an issue with fading and smudging, with shades like this but it still lasted pretty well and gradually faded away to nothing.

As you can hopefully see from all of these pictures the pigmentation of all of these lipsticks is excellent. They are really easy to apply with no pulling or dragging. They don't feel drying on the lips, but whilst they do feel moisturising on the lips, they aren't the softest or creamiest lipsticks that ever used, particularly when it comes to the deeper, and more vibrant shades.

The fact that they aren't that creamy though is actually a good thing though because it really helps with the wear time. From the darkest shade to the lightest shade, all of the colours pretty much stayed put, and faded down gradually. The darker shades had a tendency to move a little bit at first, and they did have a tendency to cling on to the drier ares of my lips, but by and large once the glossy finish had faded, all of the shades left a subtle stain like finish on the lips that hung around for just a little bit longer.

These Lip Cremes allegedly have a subtle vanilla based taste and scent but to be honest I couldn't really detect anything but that could be down to the smaller size. Although I would hope that these minis are a good indicator of just how good the full sizes are, I can't really be sure without trying them. Whether they would admit it or not, some brands actually reduce the quality of the products in their holiday sets, so either way with these lipsticks I think you are on to a winner, and I'm really pleased that I bought this set when I had the chance.

Whilst the set does contain a couple of colours that I wouldn't normally wear, I was surprised at just how wearable everything was and just how well the shades worked with my skin tone. The quality was decent, the lipsticks felt nice on the lips, and whilst the wear time wasn't quite as great as Marc Jacobs Beauty promised, it was still decent, and I also ended up with a snazzy new clutch bag - All in all a good first Marc Jacobs Beauty experience, and a good sale purchase.

As I say this particular set was a limited edition, and the only way you might possibly find it now is on the secondary market. If you like the colours though, you can buy Goddess, J'Adore, Infamous, and Sonic Truth in the full 3.6g size for around £27 / $32 each, either direct from Marc Jacobs Beauty, who ship worldwide, or from Net-A-Porter, or Harvey Nichols. Have you tried anything from Marc Jacobs Beauty? Let me know your recommendations if you have any in the comments x

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

A Late Unboxing Of Glossybox UK - February 2020 Edition - Love Crosses Borders*

Apologies for the lack of posts over the last week but I took some much needed time out to celebrate my birthday on Friday. It was a little bit weird not seeing anyone bar my mam, but everyone made a real effort to make it special for my anyways, sending my messages, sending cards, and dropping off cards and pressies, and it's funny even seeing people through panes of glass and at a safe distance made me feel a little brighter. I mainly got money and vouchers, so I may be doing, and have already maybe done a little bit of online shopping, so if you want to see the results of that make sure you're following my blog and my other social media channels x 

In the meantime though let's take a trip back to February, the month of love or in my case this year the month of illness! I was so poorly throughout February and March (with what we now believe thanks to a few emergency hospital trips for Mummy Lou in the last month, was more than likely Covid 19!),  that Valentines Day was nothing more than just another day, where I couldn't breathe, and I couldn't stop coughing.  My memories of February are pretty vague but I'm sure that Newcastle United's FA Cup run and the arrival of the Valentines Day edition of Glossybox must have lifted my spirits slightly.

With a "Love Crosses Borders" theme, February's box was pink in colour, with an almost ombre variation from light pin to a deeper more coral toned pink, with the word "Love" embossed in white on the lid in several different languages, and in several different fonts.

The pink theme was followed on inside the box, with pale pink tissue paper, and red shred to protect the contents, which was secured with a pink / red ribbon with printed with hearts and the words "Love Crosses Borders" in white.

The first item in the box as per usual was the information booklet which talked about the products in the box, and explained the box theme. The "Love Crosses Borders" theme was all about sharing things that bring us to together and the universal language of love, and as a result the box contained a range of products from across the globe to create a kissable pout and soft dewy skin, perfect for Valentines Day!

Figs & Rouge Wonder Love Charm Glow Elixir - 30ml - Full Size - RRP £35

The first item in the box was the item that was teased in January's box, and it was a product a British based brand, Figs and Rouge, whose vegan and animal friendly products, and both made and formulated in the UK.

One of the most recent additions to their line this products is a brightening elixir that is designed to give the skin a healthy glow, whilst perfecting, soothing and reenergising the complexion. It contains hydrating hyaluronic acid, vitamins A, C, and E, minerals including rose quartz, and rosewater to perfect and add radiance.

Keeping in with the pink theme, this product comes in a beautiful pink box. The product itself comes in a glass bottle, with a pale pink rubber, and plastic dropper.

Squeeze out a few drops and you're met with a slightly cool feeling, pale pink shimmery liquid, which a fresh, clean almost floral scent.

On Application

Lightly Blended

Completely Blended Out 

You can use this product in a few ways, one of the ways is apply a few drops onto cleansed skin, either before or after, or even instead of moisturiser, and then blend it out, before applying foundation, or you can do what I've done below and just wear it on its own.

Bare Skin - Before

Bare Skin - Application 

Bare Skin - After

To be honest there isn't a huge amount of difference between the before and after pictures but in real life my skin definitely looked a little bit more radiant, and hydrated.

As well as using it alone or under your make up you can also use it on certain areas of the face either on it's own or as I've done here, on top of make up as a liquid highlighter / illuminator.

Applied As Highlighter On Top Of Foundation And Under Foundation 

The funny thing is if I'd reviewed this product back in February, March or even in early April, I would have been at best indifferent to it, but that extra month has made all of the difference - I get it now! 

It's subtle, it doesn't add a ton of pigment or shimmer, whether you wear on it under make up or even on it's own, it just makes you look a little bit healthier, and it takes away some of that dullness and flatness, that we're probably all suffering from at the moment. You can use it in a few ways, and I think it's all about finding out what works best for you and your skin, and what type of finish that you want to achieve.

The full size retails at £35 and despite the fact that Feel Unique seem to sell a small selection of Figs & Rouge items, the only place I can find this product is direct from Amazon via Figs & Rouge.

Starskin Dreamkiss Plumping & Hydrating Bio - Cellulose Lip Mask - 1 x 5g Mask - Est. RRP £4.25

The next product was something from face mask specialist Starskin. Launched in 2015 Starskin's range of high performance, instant results skincare, is PETA certified, and is free from parabens, phthalates, mineral oils, sulphates and synthetic dyes.

Whilst they are probably most well known for their face and eye masks, this is actually a lip mask that aims to hydrate and plump the lips, and improve the appearance of fine lines, and wrinkles. It contains vitamin rich fermented coconut juice, sea fern collagen, hyaluronic acid, jojoba, linseed oil, sunflower seed oil, shea butter, safflower oil and honey.

The first thing you notice when you open the packet is just how much liquid there is in inside. The lip shaped patch itself has a thin gel, like appearance, and it doesn't feel that thick or substantial so it isn't that easy to peel it off the 2 sheets of clear film that cover it.

The patch itself had a pleasant fruity scent and taste and it adhered really securely to the lip area, so you can stand up and do other things, without it falling off. It feels quite cool on application but it warms up to body temperature quite quickly.

Starskin advise that you leave the mask on for around 10-15 minutes. It feels off really easily and whilst the instructions tell you to rub the excess serum into your lip are, I was actually surprised at just how dry the patch felt. My lips and skin must have sucked up every little drop of moisture that this mask had to offer.

I couldn't see any real difference in the plumpness or volume of my lips, but they definitely felt softer, and less flaky. Although I didn't experience any major miracles with this product I think it's a really nice treat for dry lips and I would definitely consider using it again.

The packet contained 1 mask, which Glossybox valued at around £4.25. The masks usually come in a pack of 2 and retail at around £8.50 from various retailers including Look Fantastic, Debenhams, and Feel Unique.

Saint Luxe Lip Liner Duo - Crush and Cupid - 2 x 1g - Full Size - RRP $40 / £23

One of the things that I love most about beauty and subscription boxes is the fact that they give you the chance to try something new. I can't find too much out about this next brand, other than the fact that they are a US based brand, that pride themselves on their sleek packaging and their luxury ingredients.

The only products that are actually on their website appear to be pencils, and the pretty pink box in February's Glossybox contained two lip pencils, that Saint Luxe claim and both creamy and long lasting.

In a true, wooden pencil format these pencil are pale pink and colour, and they come with a pink plastic lid. You get two different contrasting colours, Crush - a deep cool toned red, and Cupid - a neutral, nude pink shade.

Top - Crush - Bottom - Cupid

 Crush And Cupid 

The pigmentation is superb, but in my opinion they aren't that soft or creamy. The obvious way to use a lip pencil is to use it to line your lips, but I think that a good test of a lip pencil is to use it to fill in your lips so that's exactly what I did.


On the whole I think they did a fairly decent job, they did drag a bit on application, and they weren't that hydrating, but they lasted well, and they looked okay on. When it came to sharpening them though, it all went a bit wrong. I tried to sharpen Crush, and I found the coloured section very, very crumbly, and the wood was really brittle, so it was pretty much impossible to achieve a decent point.

Apart from the sharpening and the lack of moisture these pencils weren't actually that bad. They wore well and Cupid especially is a very Louise colour but a high end product? not in my opinion! The only retailer I've found for these pencils is direct from Saint Luxe, who ship worldwide, where the duo retails at $40! Glossybox quote a slightly less eye watering £23 but I think that even that is overpriced when brands like Revolution, Rimmel and even Primark, produce lip liners that are equally as good if not better and more purse friendly.

Floss Beauty My New Favourite Lip Gloss - Ath - 15g - Full Size - RRP $16 / £12.30

Next up another lip product, and this time something from Canadian brand Floss Beauty. I first came across Floss Beauty in the August 2019 edition of Pink Parcel, when I received a My New Favourite Lip Gloss in the shade Yul - You can read my review here

Since Yul was almost a translucent shade, I'm really pleased to have the opportunity to try a coloured gloss this time around.

Both cruelty and paraben free like Yul, the shade that I received this time around was Ath, which is also named after an airport only this time Athens.

Although it look a little bit more coral here, Ath is a lovely neutral pink shade, that works perfectly with the Cupid lip liner. Again it comes in a squeezy plastic tube with a doe foot applicator and again it has a slightly synthetic coconut / vanilla scent.

As you can see the pigmentation is excellent, it applies easily, and it feels smooth, creamy and comfortable on the lips. One of the biggest deal breakers with gloss is stickiness, and thankfully this one doesn't feel too tacky, it wears well, and even when the gloss fades it leaves a small amount of colour on the lips. 

This is a really nice wearable shade that I will definitely use. It's non drying, and perfect if you aren't a fan of of sticky or gloopy lip glosses. The only retailer that I can find for this gloss is direct from Floss Beauty where this lip gloss retails at around $16, Glossybox quote a price of around £12.30.

Glossybox Slanted Lip Brush - Full Size - Est. RRP £5.10

The final official item in February's box was a Glossybox branded lip brush. With a pale pink handle with the Glossybox logo printed on the side, this brush has rose gold tone ferrule, and a slanted brush head, with soft but densely packed hairs.

The pointed end is perfect for outlining the lips and defining the lip line, and the large, flat side is perfect for filling in the lips.

This is a nice quality brush, that doesn't just have to be for lips, you could also use it as an eye brush or even as a brow brush. This brush is Glossybox branded and is exclusive to this box, and it has a recommended retail price of £5.10.

Now as well as the usual 5 items some subscribers also received a 6th item, and do you know what that means - controversy! Not everyone received this extra item and to say that some people weren't happy was an understatement! I was apparently one of the lucky ones and I did receive an extra 'treat'.

Glossier You Eau De Parfum - 1.5ml 

Yes, after all of that it was a fragrance sample from one of the brands of the moment, Glossier. As I've said before the inclusion of fragrances in a subscription boxes is always a bit of a funny one, so I'm not quite sure why so many people seemed so desperate to get their hands on this one, especially after smelling it!

Based on a lot of online reviews Glossier You appears to be a pretty popular scent but personally I'm not a fan. It contains warm and creamy base notes of amberette, ambrox and musk, and top notes of earthy green iris root, and pink pepper.

To me it smells very musky and dare I say it old fashioned, if you like this I'm sorry to say this but it reminds me of perfume mixed with stale cigarette smoke! The only positive thing that I can possible say about it is that it wears incredibly well, and that unlike a lot of fragrances, the smell stays pretty much the same as it does when you first spray it.

I've worn it a few times now, and it hasn't grown on me at all, it's a world away from the sweet floral tones that I normally wear, and there is something about it that I just don't like!

The full 50ml size of Glossier You retails at £45 and is available direct from Glossier. The box also included a coupon for 10% off your first order from Glossier but guess what? I forgot about it and it expired on the 5th May - wahhhhh!

Although the February 2020 edition of Glossybox ended on a bit of a damp squib, overall I was pretty pleased with February's offering. It was pretty make up heavy but it contained some nice wearable products. There were no real standouts but everything was decent even I wouldn't necessarily pay full price for the lip pencils

Let me know your thoughts in the comments, and if you fancy subscribing to Glossybox, you can find out more via this link x Thanks for reading as per usual and I'll see you soon with a quick make up review before resuming my Glossybox catch ups x 

*The Post Contains Both Affiliate And Non Affiliate Links

Monday, 4 May 2020

Trimming My Stash - January, February, And March 2020 Edition - Empties And Mini Reviews*

Right, I said that this was going to be an epic post, and after spending the last week or so working on it, it's certainly that. Since I'm now so far behind on my empties posts, I've decided to do a 3 in 1 post to try and get myself up to date again. so this long and rambling post will cover all of my beauty empties from January, February, and March, and April's will hopefully follow in the next week or so. First up January, and a pretty mediocre start to 2020.

Derma V10 Deep Moisturising Hand Pack Argan Oil - 1 x Treatment
Bio Miracle Stardust Unicorn Bubble Mask - 1 x 20g Bubble Sheet Mask
Soap & Glory Thick & Fast Super Volume Mascara - Black - 10ml
The Body Shop Juicy Pear Exfoliating Sugar Body Scrub - 300g

Total - 4 Items

1. Derma V10 Deep Moisturising Hand Pack Argan Oil - 1 x Treatment

I think 2020 is going to be remembered for lots of reasons, most of which are fairly obvious but one of the reasons that I think I'll be remembering it for is it being the year that my hands and nails finally gave up hope!

My hands were already dry thanks to the central heating and the cold and windy winter weather, but thanks to  all of the extra hand washing and sanitising that going at the moment, my hands, and nails aren't looking their best.As you should know from the amount that I finish, I'm a regular user of both hand creams and cuticle oils, but over the last few months in a desperate bid to repair my hands and nails, I've been trying some more intensive treatments, including this hand mask that I picked up in Poundland, from UK based company, Derma V10.

Suitable for vegans, the pack contains two plastic gloves, with a paper / fibre like lining. Each glove contains a lot of milky, white liquid that contains Moroccan argan oil, shea butter and vitamin E.

All you do is pop the gloves onto clean, dry hands, and then just relax as best you can for around 20 minutes, whilst trying to ignore the cold, squelchy feeling that currently enveloping your hands.

After taking the gloves off, as you can see my hands were still very wet, and they were covered in a milky substance that smelled a bit like minty, plastic, and my fingertips were also really wrinkled as if I'd had had a nice long bath - hmm.

The instructions said to massage any excess liquid into your hands, but there was so much of it, it took a good 10-15 minutes for it all to soak in and even then my hands still felt really sticky.

Immediately After Removal

I took a few before and after pictures but to be honest I don't think that you can really see too much difference between the two pictures. In real life though my hands strangely did feel more hydrated, and the problem areas around my cuticles definitely didn't feel as hard or as dry, bit they did feel pretty tacky, and I did feel as though I needed to wash my hands, which to be honest outweighs any real benefit. I actually bought a few different hand masks to try out so I'll try and keep an open mind when I use them, but I can't help but think that that a pair of cotton gloves, and some hand cream, might be a better and more eco friendly option.



I picked these up in Poundland, but Derma V10 as a brand is also available in various other bargain type, and chemist stores such as Savers, B&M and Bodycare for around a £1, and you can also find them on ebay.

2. Bio Miracle Stardust Unicorn Bubble Mask - 1 x 20g Bubble Sheet Mask

Next up a face mask, and one that I received in my last Pink Parcel box that I received way back in November! The least said about the shambolic end of Pink Parcel the better, I kept the faith with them for way longer than I should have, and I like so many others paid the price, literally! Anyways I didn't post an official unboxing but this was one of the items that I received and it combined two of my favourite skin care products, bubble masks and sheet masks.

Bio Miracle is a US brand that is popular in both the US and in Asia. Animal friendly, this mask is also paraben free, it contains green tea, anise, grape, papaya, and apple extracts and it's designed to promote cleaner, clearer skin, by eliminating impurities and increasing hydration.

Immediately on opening the sachet you're greeted with a mass of purple liquid, almost suspended in the liquid is a nice quality paper / fibre mask that is printed with a unicorn design that is barely visible due to the inky purple liquid. The scent is slight fruity but at the same time quite astringent.

Because it's so wet, it's quite difficult to open the mask up, but it's decent quality so I personally didn't experience any tearing. All you do is apply the mask to clean dry skin and then you wait for the magic to happen. The instructions say for best result to rub the mask to encourage the bubbles to form, but in my experience they didn't really need a lot of encouragement!

On Application 

After 1 - 2 Minutes 

After 20 Minutes

The mask felt slightly tingly on the skin, and it was almost quite ticklish with the bubbling sensation, and that only increased as more bubbles formed. it wasn't uncomfortable and like most bubble masks it makes you feel as though it's doing something.

Immediately After Removal 

After removing the mask there was a lot of purple liquid and bubbles left on the skin, so I rinsed the excess off with warm water. After rinsing my skin looked clean and clear, and it felt smooth with no redness or tightness.

After Rinsing 

I'm not going to lie this mask was messy as hell, with purple drips running down my face, and rogue bubbles escaping into my hair. I was actually pretty worried that it would stain and that I'd end up looking like Violet Beauregarde but I just looked like someone with slightly better skin!

Despite the mess and the almost horror movie esq visuals I really liked this mask and I would definitely consider repurchasing it. The only place that I can find this mask online in the UK is from a company called Beauty Bargains UK where it retails at £3.

3. Soap & Glory Thick & Fast Super Volume Mascara - Black - 10ml

The next item is a bit of a rarity for me when it comes to empties posts because it's a make up item. As much as I love make up because I have so much of it, I'm always switching it up and using different things so it's very rare that I ever finish anything. Obviously I should use up more mascaras but who isn't guilty of using one for longer than 3 months - I can't help it i feel guilty for throwing things out that aren't empty - what can I say?

Although 2019 was an exception, just about every Christmas I get some form of gift set from Soap & Glory filled with bath and body goodies, and sometimes skincare and make up. I've had a few of these mascaras now and I think it's a decent everyday mascara.

Featuring Soap & Glory's unique Superfill - false lash effect fillers, Shine Amplifiers, and no flake, 24 hour technology, Soap & Glory claim that this mascara has a no clump formulation, that add super volume, and length to lashes.

On me it adds a little bit of lift to my lashes, they look a little bit fuller, and a tiny touch longer, but they give a more natural look rather than a true false lash effect. It also wears well, with very little smudging or flaking. it's a good workhorse mascara that you could easily wear for any occasion. If you want to know what it looks like on, then it's the mascara that I'm wearing in my December Glossybox unboxing post, and in both parts of my 2019 Glossybox advent calendar unboxing, which you read here and here. This mascara retails at £10 and is available from both Boots and direct from Soap & Glory.

4. The Body Shop Juicy Pear Exfoliating Sugar Body Scrub - 300g

The final item from January sums up 2 of my favourite things, body scrubs, and festive scents from The Body Shop. From Christmas 2019's Juicy Pear range, this is a gorgeous sugar based body scrub that contains community trade, organic sugar from Paraguay, and pear extract from Italy.

I love anything apple or pear scented so this collection was right up my street. Unlike a lot of festive scents it wasn't spicy, there was no cinnamon or ginger just the subtle sweet, tart scent of ripe pears. The Body Shop sugar scrub is already one of my favourite scrub formulations, and when you combine it with such a yummy scent even more so.

This particular scent was obviously a limited edition for Christmas 2019, so it will probably be pretty difficult to find now, which is a shame because I think this scent actually has an all year round appeal. This size of scrub though has a retail price of around £16. Thankfully I managed to get my hands on a few Juicy Pear items in the after Christmas sales so I'll be able to enjoy this lovely fragrance for little bit longer.

Next up February's empties - To be honest I don't remember an awful lot about February or early March but what I do remember is that any attempt at beauty routine went straight out of the window because I barely made it out of bed for more than a few hours a day - damn you stupid virus - So understandably February's empties total, like Januarys, and as you will see March's, was less than impressive.

Baylis & Harding Skin Spa Rosemary, Eucalyptus & White Tea Luxury Cream Wash - 500ml
Beauty Pro Eye Therapy Under Eye Mask With Collagen And Green Tea - 1 x Pair - 3.5g
Primark PS...It's All Good Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes x 25 Wipes

Total - 3 Items

1. Baylis & Harding Skin Spa Rosemary, Eucalyptus & White Tea Luxury Cream Wash - 500ml

When you've got a cold, a chest infection, or if you're feeling a little bit bunged up, you will do anything to help yourself breathe a little bit easier, and whilst I really struggled a couple of thing that I relied on a lot were steam inhalations and hot showers. Thankfully we are lucky enough to have a wet room and a shower chair so I was still able to have nice warm, steamy showers.

I really found that the steam and the hot water helped no matter what shower product I used but this product in particular seemed to give me a bit of an extra boost.

From British based toiletry brand, Baylis & Harding, this vegan friendly and paraben free shower cream contains extracts of white tea, rosemary and eucalyptus. I've used a few eucalyptus based shower products over the years, and whilst you could definitely smell the slightly antiseptic notes of the eucalyptus and rosemary, the inclusion of the white tea seemed to tone it down slightly and give more of a green, woody scent.

As you can probably guess from the inclusion of the polar bear on the packaging this was also a limited edition Christmas item. I've had a little look online and the only places that I can now find this range online is on Amazon or ebay. 

2. Beauty Pro Eye Therapy Under Eye Mask With Collagen And Green Tea - 1 x Pair - 3.5g

Next up another subscription box item, and something from the August 2019 edition of Glossybox.

From mask specialist, Beauty Pro this is a pair of hydro gel under eye patched. Paraben, lanolin, mineral oil, and petroleum free, these patches are dermatologically tested, and aren't tested on animals. They contains collagen, green tea, aloe vera, and vitamins A and E. Designed to relaxing and cooling, they claim to relieve the effects of tired, swollen and puffy eyes, as well as minimising  dark circles, and improving the appearance of fine lines and dryness on the under eye area.

Each patch was stuck to a sheet of clear plastic film. One side of the patch had a paper / fabric fibre feel, and the other side was covered in a pale green semi solid gel, which smelled a little bit like Elizabeth Arden's Green Tea fragrance.

The shape of the patch fits the under eye perfectly. All you do is apply the patch gel side down, to clean dry skin. On application the patch felt quite cool but it wasn't quite as cool as I'd expected. The patch felt slightly tight on the skin, and once it was applied it didn't move. After 20 minutes it was fairly easy to peel the patch off, and unlike a lot of hydro gel based products there was no stickiness and virtually no moisture remaining.



As you can probably see there is no real visual difference between the before and after pictures, but in real life my skin did feel a bit more refreshed and a little bit more hydrated.

I have to say that I actually prefer a pure hydro gel patches with no fabric side because I find them a little bit more cooling and hydrating but these one are way less messy to use. There is no excess liquid, or stickiness and you can even wear your glasses whilst you're doing the treatment.

These patches come in a pack of 3 pairs for around £4.95 from various retailers including Beauty Pro, Look Fantastic, Amazon, Feel Unique and Fragrance Direct.

3. Primark PS...It's All Good Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes x 25 Wipes

I can usually say that I've been using these wipes for swatch clean up, and for general hygiene reasons but I'm not going to lie - I probably used most of this packet on my face!

When you're not feeling well and you're all gross and sweaty, rubbing a cool, tea tree based wipe over your face makes you feel clean and fresh again, even it's just for a few minutes. Under normal circumstances using wipes on your face is a bit of a no no, so I hope that the skin care purists amongst you will forgive me.

I haven't been into Primark since before Christmas so I have no idea if they even still sell these but I have one packet left and I can assure that I have no plans to use them on my face, they will be used for swatches and swatches alone.

Finally it's time to look back at March's empties, and as I said like January and February before it, it was another mehhh month.

Primark PS... Nourishing Cuticle Revive Nourishing Cuticle Oil - 1.5ml
Sunday Rain Scrub Away Exfoliating Cubes Charcoal - 150g
Aldi Lacura Healthy Glow Exfoliating Toner 5% Glycolic Acid, Aloe Vera & Ginseng - 250ml
AVON Senses Festive Wishes Winter Apple Cheer Daily Hand Wash - 250ml
Total - 4 Items

1. Primark PS... Nourishing Cuticle Revive Nourishing Cuticle Oil - 1.5ml

Talking about Primark this next item was actually one of the last things that I bought there, way back in December. You can read a full review of it here. I haven't really got a great deal to add to my original review other than to add that I like, it's convenient and it works, it just doesn't last that long, and if you look really closely at the picture above, there is a tiny bit of product still left in the tube that I just can't get it out - hmm still it was only £1 so I can't really complain.
ETA - I eventually realised that it was was possible to twist and pull the brush end out to access the remaining oil - so no waste after all and so it was definitely worth £1.

2. Sunday Rain Scrub Away Exfoliating Cubes Charcoal - 150g

Next up another body exfoliator, and this time it's something from much hyped, vegan brand, Sunday Rain.

From their charcoal range, the tub contained 8 exfoliating cubes each containing shea butter to heal and moisturise, sugar to smooth, and to help retain moisture, as well as naturally derived wood charcoal, which is slightly gritty, to exfoliate, purify and refresh the skin.

The cubes themselves are like pumped up, dark grey sugar cubes. They are a bit softer than sugar cubes though and they have a nice, subtle fresh scent. I found the best way to use them was to slightly crumble the cube, and massage it into damp skin. The were nice and gritty and any excess rinsed away easily with warm water, leaving the skin super soft.

They are a touch messier than a normal tub of body scrub, but because of the sugar base any dark residue dissolves and rinses clean away.

I'm not sure whether these cubes are as economical as a normal body scrub but I do like them, and I really want to try the watermelon version as well.

These retail at around £6 - £7 for a variety of retailers including ASOS, Boohoo, Debenhams, and Amazon.

3. Aldi Lacura Healthy Glow Exfoliating Toner 5% Glycolic Acid, Aloe Vera & Ginseng - 250ml

Okay, lets cut straight to the chase with this one, this particular product has pretty much borrowed its entire being from PIXI Glow Tonic, it isn't really a dupe, it's much more of an out and out copy.The packaging is pretty much identical and the ingredients list is pretty similar too, all be it with Aldi version apparently containing less Aloe Vera extract.

Having used both products I don't think that there is too much difference between the two. The Aldi version smells a touch more astringent, and I did find that it tingled a little bit more, but I experienced pretty much the same results with both products. My skin was more balanced, blemishes dried up more quickly, and any rough patches didn't feel quite as rough.

To be honest I would repurchase both this and the PIXI product - I like them both, and in my experience the results were pretty similar, the only real difference is the price, a 250ml bottle of PIXI Glow Tonic retails at around £18, where as a 250ml bottle of Aldi Lacura Healthy Glow Exfoliating Toner, retails at around £3.99.

I can understand people hating on brands for such blatant dupes (although Aldi have now changed their packaging) but ultimately it's the consumer that benefits. If you can afford to spend £18 on just 1 skincare product that's fine but if you can't then there are cheaper alternatives out there. You pays your money and takes your choice I guess x 

4. AVON Senses Festive Wishes Winter Apple Cheer Daily Hand Wash - 250ml

The final product that I'm going to talk about in this post is a hand wash, and honestly who hasn't used one of these up in the past month or so?

Although I'm not 100% sure about this one's antibacterial properties, this was a lovely hand wash, in one of AVON's festive scents. It had a very similar smell to The Body Shop's Spiced Apple scent from a few years ago - sweet yet tart apple, combined with warming festive spices. It smelled lovely and it didn't feel drying on the skin.

Since this was a limited edition product it's not that easy to get hold of now. I spotted it in a recent sale supplement and tried to order some but unsurprisingly it was sold out, thankfully I have a unopened bottle of the accompanying shower gel, so at least I can enjoy the fragrance for a little bit longer.

So they were my January, February, and March empties, if you have any questions or comments on any of the items in this post then please let me know x I haven't had the best start of the year empties wise but hopefully things will get better from here on it. My April empties post should be up in a couple of weeks or so, and since I managed to get my new fibre broadband sorted I should be able to post a little bit more regularly x Thanks for reading and I will see you soon with a late unboxing and review of the February edition of Glossybox

*This Post Contains Both Affiliate And Non Affiliate Links