Monday 7 January 2019

Trimming My Stash - December 2018 Edition - Empties, Mini Reviews, A 2018 Round Up And A Life Update

Since this is my first post of 2019, I'd like to start it off by wishing you all a very Happy New Year x I had originally intended to keep on posting right through the Christmas and New Year holiday, but I changed my plans slightly and decided to take a bit of extra time out, for me and mine, and do you know what? I'm glad I did! Coping with chronic illness at the best of times is a struggle, but at Christmas time, that struggle seems to be amped right up, and even though I didn't do a lot of extra work or socialising by some peoples standards, by Boxing Day all I wanted was my bed, so I took a few unplanned days off to recharge my batteries enough to enjoy a bit of extra rest and a bit of extra family time.

I'm not a fan of going out on New Years Eve, it's hard when you can't drink much, and you don't have the energy to stand or dance all night, so I saw 2019 in, in front of the TV, in my PJ's with Mummy Lou, some fizz and some nibbles - simple pleasures! Despite the usual optimism at midnight, 2019 hasn't actually started off that well if I'm being honest - case in point, 2 days into the new year, and thanks to a jar of marmalade I managed to shatter my iPhone screen in several dozen pieces! My poor phone didn't look pretty at all and within a couple of seconds it became pretty much useless. The obvious option was to get it fixed but after being blessed with some Christmas money, and being able to upgrade my mobile phone contract, I took the plunge and got myself a shiny new iPhone X. It has a few quirks that I'm not quite used to yet but I'm getting there and I'm slowly falling in love with an inanimate object! Is that wrong? LOL probably but the battery lasts longer, everything seems quicker, and the camera is well on point, oh and I even managed to sell on my poor little 6S, so bar my bank balance being a little depleted, and a couple of stressful moments, I dealt with it and moved on.

I wish I could say the same thing about my poor little tooth though - For a change I had a really productive day on Friday I took some photos, did some editing, and sorted out the music on my new phone, by the time it got to 4pm though I was a bit tired so in true spoonie style I went for a quick Nana nap, or should that be a spoonie siesta? You know the story though my hours rest turned into a six and a half hour, full on sleep, I woke up about quarter to 12 at night, and I was hungry. I'd missed dinner, no problem though, we have still have plenty of food leftover from the holidays so I made myself a cheese sandwich and had a few posh crisps on the side. All good, good sandwich, good crisps, but then suddenly it all went wrong! I put a couple of crisps in my mouth and crunch I bit down on something hard, it felt like cat litter, it gets everywhere, but how did it get in my crisps? - I'll spare you the graphic details but it wasn't actually cat litter it was much worse than that, I'd taken a chunk out of one of my bottom teeth - sob - I care for my teeth, I do everything I'm supposed to, and then this happens - one of the perils of taking medication that leaves your eyes and mouth as dry as the Sahara Desert, can be dental problems - woohoo! Thankfully at the moment it doesn't really hurt bar a bit of irritation where the jagged edge is scraping my cheek and tongue, but obviously I'm going to have to be really careful about what I eat until I can see my dentist on Wednesday, so no nuts or toffees for me, and lots of gentle brushing, water flossing, and antibacterial mouthwash - oh the joys! -

So there we go, two things that have gone wrong already in 2019; They say that things come in 3's so can the third thing, if and when it comes, be equally minor and relatively easy to deal with, and then please can the year get better from then? I certainly hope so! 2018 wasn't the best of years for me for a lot of reasons but I came out of it a stronger, and hopefully a better person, and hopefully that will put me in good stead for whatever 2019 has to offer. I'm not big on resolutions, maybe because I'm not big on failing, but probably more so, I don't always feel that you should change who you are. Like my new diary suggest I don't really want to change the essence of who I am because the date on a calendar changes, I just want to be the best person that I can and do things for me and not for anyone else. What does that mean? well it basically means that you aren't going to get any life changing or world changing new years resolutions from me in 2019, I'm just going to try and make a few small changes to make my life easier, and hopefully even better. I am going to talk about a few changes that I'm going to make that may impact the blog in my next post, but other than that it's just the usual aims, and goals - to try and concentrate on the important things and the important people, try to save a bit of money and think about what I buy a bit more, and of course to try and be a bit more organised.

I seem to say the same thing pretty much every year but I'm hoping that 2019 will be the year that I wear more, and use more, and buy less. I'm already planning a huge clothing and accessory purge, and I am of course going to keep on tackling a significantly reduced beauty mountain. I didn't make a what I got for Christmas video this year but I was really blessed and received some lovely things (check out my Instagram if you want to see some of the things that I got x). Compared to previous years though I didn't get that many beauty products, I got quite a few nail polishes, and a few make up kits, but I didn't get a lot of skin care or body care bits, and since I've avoided the sales, I haven't added to my stash too much over the festive period, and since I'm only going to try and buy what I need in 2019, I don't intend to add too much more to it over the next 12 months or so. It therefore goes without saying that Trimming My Stash will be an ongoing thing in 2019, but before we get started and focus on the here and now, lets take a little look back and see what I managed to finish in December 2018..

Lush Snow Fairy Body Conditioner - 100g
Skin Republic X Olivia Buckland Prep + Glow Face Mask Sheet - 25ml - 1 x Sheet Mask
Superdrug Nourishing Nail Polish Remover - 250ml
The Body 
Shop Merry Cranberry Bath & Shower Gel - 250ml
NIVEA Caring Shower Gel Love Sunshine - 250ml
Primark PS Cuticle Oil
Primark PS... Micellar Facial Cleansing Wipes x 25 Wipes

Total - 7 Items 

Well I ended the year by finishing a pretty solid 7 items, which seems to be a little bit better than my average monthly performance. I finished a nice assortment of items including lots of body care, products and a few skincare items, a couple of new things, and a couple of old favourites. In fact the only thing that would have made it better would have been to finish a make up item or two - pretty much the story of my year - I've managed to finish loads of everything else but hardly any make up, so that's definitely an area I need to focus on in 2019.

1. Lush Snow Fairy Body Conditioner - 100g

Ah Snow Fairy, would Christmas really be Christmas without that sweet bubblegum, candy floss like scent - I don't think so. Now you're probably familiar with the original Snow Fairy shower cream but have you tried this? Originally released in 2016, Snow Fairy Body Conditioner almost resembles pink blancmange, it's has a creamy buttery texture, and it contains organic cocoa, mango and avocado butters, and almond and jojoba oils as well as a smattering of iridescent shimmer.

Now despite the suggestion that this is a body moisturiser, Lush actually promote this as a shower product and they advise that you smooth a layer of the cream all over your body before rinsing it off in the bath or shower. As well as cleansing the skin it gives it a much bigger moisture boost than just using a conventional shower product, and because it's so creamy it's also brilliant to shave with. It is a really indulgent shower product but it does seem a bit of a waste to just wash it off, so what I and a lot of other Lushies tend to do it to use a small amount either as a body moisturiser, or to add a bit of shimmer to the skin. It takes a little while to absorb but it leaves the skin feel really smooth and deliciously scented.

I think that this is a lovely product but I think you have a tendency to overuse it so it doesn't seem to last that long. That said if you love Snow Fairy and you want a really indulgent and pampering product, and you want to fully immerse yourself in that sugary sweet scent then this is the product for you. Alas I did manage to get any more of this, this Christmas but I do have a large bottle of Snow Fairy to indulge all of my pick 'n' mix and candy floss fantasies in 2019 without all of the calories and the sugar.

2. Skin Republic X Olivia Buckland Prep + Glow Face Mask Sheet - 25ml - 1 x Sheet Mask

Now when I received this in November's Pink Parcel I openly admitted that I had no idea who Olivia Buckland is - what can I say I'm not a fan of Love Island or reality TV in general, and whilst I still don't know much about her what I can say is that this is without a doubt one of the nicest sheet masks that I've ever used!

High praise from moi! but just why did I like this so much well, for a start it did exactly what it promised - it promised me bright, hydrated and flawless skin and that's exactly what I got! This spun lace / paper feel mask contains plumping collagen, pomegranate extract and hydrating hyaluronic acid.

The first thing I noticed when I took the mask out of the packet was just how wet it was, it wasn't watery wet though, it felt thicker then that and almost slightly gel like. After doing my best Phantom Of The Opera impression for around 15 minute I removed the mask to find a layer of almost serum like liquid on my face. It was pretty easy to massage into the skin though and it didn't take too long to absorb. In fact there was so much extra liquid left over both on the mask itself and in the packet that I massaged the excess over my neck, decolletage, and even on my hands. Once it had absorbed my skin looked brighter, and felt smoother, plumper, and crammed full of moisture without feeling oily. I've tried quite a few sheet masks now and this is before the best I've tried in terms of feel and in terms of noticeable results. It may be a coincidence but in the days after I'd used it a few people commented on just how clear my skin looked, and how well rested I looked, despite the fact that I certainly didn't feel it! It's not the cheapest mask at £5.49 for one application but I was so pleased with the results that I'm definitely considering buying this one again, if you fancy giving it ago yourself, you can get it in Superdrug.

3. Superdrug Nourishing Nail Polish Remover - 250ml

Now nail polish remover isn't the most exciting of beauty products, but if you love your nail polish as much as I do it's an essential x It's acetone free, it's not drying on the nails, it doesn't smell horrible, it's cheap and it works, in fact I love it so much that I actually class it as one of my holy grail products - you can find out exactly why I love it so much in this post from 2011! The product is still exactly the same and it's still just £1.39 for 250ml - what is not to love?
4. The Body Shop Merry Cranberry Bath & Shower Gel - 250ml

Right I have no idea how old this product is but I'm sad to have finished - Every year I look forward to the Christmas collections from The Body Shop, and every year I pray that there will be something apple scented and something cranberry scented - in 2018 none of the scents made an appearance so for the first time in many, many years I didn't buy anything festive from The Body Shop. To be fair I didn't need anything but still it was a slightly strange feeling. Merry Cranberry was one of my favourite festive scents in recent (or maybe not so recent) years, the sweet, tart fruity scent was a delight to the senses and this was a shower gel that I really enjoyed using - Something makes me thing I have a few more cranberry inspired bottles tucked away so I'm going to dig those out and enjoy using them, and again I live in hope that 2019 will see the return of some of my favourite festive scents from The Body Shop 

5. NIVEA Caring Shower Gel Love Sunshine - 250ml*

From something old to something a lot more recent, and this summer scented shower gel from NIVEA. I was sent this product last summer to try and it really was summer in a bottle x You can read my full review here

6. Primark PS Cuticle Oil - 10ml

Yawn, you're probably sick of hearing about this stuff - I seem to have talked about in pretty much every other Trimming My Stash post in 2017 and 2018. Briefly it's cheap, and it works wonders, for just £1 a bottle it's a skin and nail saviour at this time of year buy it you will not be disappointed!!

7. Primark PS... Micellar Facial Cleansing Wipes x 25 Wipes

Since I bought these Primark's face wipe range has been completely overhauled and repackaged so I honestly don't know if these wipes are still in existence. I think I picked these up once when I couldn't get the tea tree ones, and I have to say they weren't half bad - Yes I know cleansing wipes aren't good for you but in an emergency, be that a real one or laziness these were decent, they weren't quite wet enough for me but they removed make up, and grime without leaving the skin red or dry or irritated - you can't ask for anymore than that.
So all in all, not too bad an end to 2018, but how did I do over the course of the whole year? and just how many beauty products did I manage to finish? Well let's see...

January - 4 Items
February - 6 Items
March - 6 Items
April - 5 Items
May - 11 Items
June - 4 Items
July - 3 Items
August - 6 Items
September - 7 Items
October - 10 Items
November - 3 Items
December - 7 Items

Total - 72 Items 

Over the course of 2018, I managed to finish 72 beauty products, which isn't too bad. Although I'm a long way off matching 2016's total of 91, I managed to finish 2 items more than I did in 2017, so any improvement has to be seen as a win. I'm not resting on my laurels though, this is an ongoing thing, and like everything else I'm learning a few lessons on the way. The first one of course being, why on earth did I buy so much stuff in the first place!!! Whether I was trying to keeping up with Jones's or other bloggers, or I thought that I was getting a bargain, or was it because I needed a little treat to cheer myself up? Who knows? It's taken a while but I've definitely realised that I either need to be a little bit more selective in my shopping, or I need to cut down on the shopping thing altogether - hmmm a tough one that but as needs and bathroom cupboards must I guess - so for 2019 my mantra is buy less, and wear and use more x Again I'll be documenting all my trimming my stash ups and downs for you right here on my blog and if you're doing something similar I'd love to hear why, what your motivations are ? and any hints, tips or suggestions that you have for making 2019 the best year yet. I'd also love to hear from you if you're are doing Project 10 Pan this year, I've been debating for quite some time over whether or not to do it again, and I'm starting to think that this that it may be time x Let me know your thoughts, and I will see you soon with a video and a little announcement,  and a very late post sharing days 13 - 25 of the Glossybox All I Want Advent Calendar x 

*Press Sample

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