Tag Archives: drugstore

Germany Drugstore Beauty Haul | Fall 2018

So, we had a short trip to Germany and if it wasn’t for the rush, it would have been perfect. Weather was wonderful and everything seemed so peaceful, I miss peaceful places and days, everything seems so crazy nowadays.

Before leaving for Germany I placed a pharmacy order with a few CeraVe products, as I’ve been really interested in trying them for a pretty long time. I just started using the Hydrating Facial Cleanser and so far, it seems really mild and gentle on the skin while removing all the impurities. I also wanted to try their Foaming Facial Cleanser and then picked up the Daily Moisturising Lotion that can be used on face and body (sadly, the eczema line was not available and I was hoping to get something for my dry legs) and the PM Facial Moisturising Lotion that also contains my favourite Niacinamide.

During the short period of time we were in Germany, I managed to enjoy visits at a couple of their drugstores and I didn’t want to leave. Everything was so interesting for me but I was mainly attracted to the colourful hair and body products. I got only one makeup item, the Catrice Slim’matic Ultra Precise Brow Pencil. I’m always on the hunt for a replacement of my Soap & Glory pencil and this one looked promising at first, I got the darkest shade available, 040 Cool Brown, a really good match for me, the pencil glides on easily and it’s indeed precise. The downside is that it’s too soft for such type of brow product and it just won’t last that long, I feel as if there’s only half left in the packaging although I’ve used it just a few times.

Sheet masks are something I’m not really using at the moment, so I picked up only 3. The Garnier SkinActive Pure Charcoal Black Tissue Mask seemed interesting because it promises pore-tightening and purifying effects. Honestly, I’m not such a fan of the brand’s sheet masks but they surely look tempting. Then I saw the adorable-looking Balea Happy Macarons Sheet Mask with Hyaluronic Acid and Blueberry Extract and the Balea Aqua Sheet Mask. I love the Aqua range, so I had to repurchase one of my favourite drugstore hyaluronic acid serums, the Balea Aqua Hydrating Serum. I’ve talked about it many times on the blog, I’ve featured it in annual favourites, as well and whenever I have the chance, I just get it.

I’ve never tried a Dontodent toothpaste (DM’s own brand) but I noticed they had a limited edition Ginger & Lemon Balm one, it looks so retro that I added it to my shopping basket.

As to hair, mini treatments are always good to have when travelling and Germany’s drugstores had quite the choice but I ended up getting the L’Oréal Elvital Anti-Breakage Treatment and the Balea Avocado Hair Mask minis.
I was so curious about the Garnier Fructis Hair Food Masks but they had just two types, so I decided to go for the Banana one. If you love banana scents, you will like this one, it’s lovely and it also nourishes my hair and makes it smoother and more shiny. I will be surely talking more about it once I’ve properly tested it out.
There were not that many shampoos that caught my eye, unfortunately. I remember that I liked the Balea Professional line before and I noticed it’s changed a bit and I don’t think I’ve seen the Clay Shampoo. It’s supposed to help with oily roots and dry ends, so I’m looking forward to trying it. The second one is a sulphate-free shampoo and I love finding new sulphate-free shampoos and cleansers and toothpastes… I hope this Nature Box Apricot Oil Shampoo will be a good one. It comes with 100% cold-pressed apricot oil, known for containing vitamins and antioxidants and is supposed to restore the shine of the hair.
Then I went to the baby section and I found one more sulphate-free shampoo. It’s from DM’s own brand Babylove and it should be quite calming and soothing. And while I was browsing the aisle, I also picked up the Cleansing Gel from the range, it’s said it can be used ”from head to toe”, so it should be another gentle product.

I’ve tried shaving foams from Balea before and now they have smaller versions of them. The Limited Edition Lovely Couple Shaving Foam has a Fig, Peony & Magnolia scent and it’s said to be good even for sensitive skin. The bottle looks really pretty and I remember they usually last quite a long time, so it’s a great budget buy.

Balea always offer colourful and fun body washes and even if they contain sulphates (I’m not saying it’s terrible, I just try to avoid sulphates because of skin issues), they smell wonderful and I can’t help myself but picking up a few. The Soft Shower Oil is something I’d like to try in the winter because it’s supposed to be purifying and hydrating at the same time. They also had a Shower Cream in a Rostock Limited Edition and the scent is of Raspberry and Lime. The traditional shower gels come in a large fruity variety and my choice ended up being the Star Fruit & Melon and the Cactus & Fig ones.
Kneipp never fail to offer fresh-scented summer body washes. Their shower foams are some of my favourites ones and I’ve had the Watermelon & Mint fragrance in a shower gel form which I loved, so now I want to try the shower foam version. I’m also looking forward to trying the Shower Tonic with Pink Grapefruit & Vetiver.
I’m familiar with CD‘s aluminum-free deodorants but I’ve never tried anything else from them. The Mint & Cucumber Morning Fresh Body Wash sounds so refreshing, perfect for the last summer mornings.
And last but not least, two of my favourite body brands. Weleda Feel Good Spicey Ginger Body Wash
and Sante Happiness Organic Orange & Mango Shower Gel are exactly what I’m looking for in a body wash, gentle formula, beautiful texture and lovely scent.

I’m looking forward to trying all these new products and I’m in particular curious about the CeraVe range. I hear so many dermatologists talk about and a lot of skincare bloggers seem to love it, as well. I’ll be also posting updates on my Instagram.

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Budget Beauty Heroes

I realised that sometimes it may seem like I don’t reach for drugstore makeup very often but that’s not true. However, the reasons why it looks like this are mainly two. First one being the fact that there aren’t many drugstore brands on the Norwegian beauty market and second, the prices of drugstore and high-end makeup in the country can be very similar. That’s why I tend to go for the high-end option most of the time but I love browsing through the drugstore aisles whenever I travel. You can find amazing jems like my favourite blush, for example, or a really good eyebrow pencil.

One of the best affordable makeup products has to be the L’Oréal Infallible 24H-Matte Foundation. It’s very difficult for me to find a base that I really like (not only at the drugstore but in general) and I’m happy this product is another budget option because I’ve been using Bourjois 123 CC Cream for years now and nothing else came close to it. They are totally different products when it comes to consistency and finish but they both earned my love. L’Oréal Infallible 24H-Matte Foundation has a great coverage and hides my redness really well, it does last very long on me although I still need to blot during the day which means it doesn’t stay totally matte. Actually, I like that it doesn’t sit too flat and heavy, it’s quite comfortable to wear, it’s easy to apply, I use a makeup sponge but on weekends I tend to mix this foundation with my moisturiser and apply it with fingers.

I’ve mentioned Max Factor Creme Puff Blush in the shade 10 Nude Mauve so many times that I even included it in my 2016 favourites. It’s the perfect blush for me, the whole range is brilliant but this shade in particular doubles up as a bronzer, gives a healthy glow thanks to the beautiful and subtle sheen (there’s no sparkle or glitter) and there is no way to overdo it even if you’re heavy-handed like me.

As you may see, I need a new pot of the Bourjois Healthy Balance Unifying Powder. I’ve been using this powder for over 3 years now and this is probably my 6th one of it, I simply love how finely-milled it is and how it keeps me shine-free for hours but gives my face radiance at the same time. Years ago it was really hard to find a good drugstore powder, there are now much more budget face powders that are pretty good but this one remains the best one for me along with Rimmel Stay Matte.

The beauty product that I almost never change is definitely my eyebrow pencil. As if I stopped looking for brow pencils after I found the Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil. It’s really precise and easy to work with, so you can form a defined brow or you can make it look natural and undone which, in my opinion, is very difficult to achieve with brow pencils.

There are a ton of amazing affordable lipsticks out there and it’s really hard for me to pick just one and say it’s the best drugstore choice. But there is one lipstick I wear so often that it somehow isn’t mentioned enough. Essence Longlasting Lipstick in the shade 05 Cool Nude (you can see a swatch in my Love for Nude Lipsticks post) may seem a bit boring in the bullet but once it’s applied on the lips it transforms into the most beautiful muted rosy shade that would suit many skin tones. It doesn’t last that long but it’s really comfortable to wear, I don’t even need a mirror to apply it, it’s not drying and the brand has such a wide range of lipstick shades and finishes that you would grab more than one.

These are some of my budget makeup stars and perhaps, it would be interesting to do a skincare version of this post. What do you think?

Drugstore Skincare Update | Autumn 2016

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When seasons change, my skin isn’t the happiest. When autumn comes, my skin is always in its most terrible condition. Not sure exactly why and how but even my trustworthy skincare products never help.
That’s why I try to switch up the items I use sometimes but step by step and not all by once because it could be even worse for the skin.

I believe that we can find really good products at the drugstore, so whenever I have access to brands I don’t see in Norway, the hunt begins. I’ve been incorporating these products one by one into my skincare routine in the past few weeks and I’m pleased to say that I’m already seeing results and my skin is getting a bit better.

When it comes to facial serums that are affordable, I’m looking for hydrating ones because let’s be honest, the ‘magical’ ingredients are a lot more expensive and they’re difficult to find on the high street. I have combination skin that is also dehydrated and all the issues get even more problematic in the autumn, the oily zones get even oilier, the lack of water shows up even more, as well.
Balea Aqua Hydrating Serum is a brilliant facial serum that contains hydrating and soothing ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin E and leaves my skin moisturised without feeling sticky or greasy. The texture of the serum is quite runny but the bottle comes with a pump that is comfortable to use and also hygienic. It takes a few seconds to fully absorb but there is no residue left and my skin feels refreshed and soothed. I also got the sheet mask from the same range and I think they’re both good for people with oily or combination skin that is also dehydrated. I don’t think it would be enough if you have really dry skin but for me, it’s working very well. I also love the fresh scent.

Oils were something I never thought I’d use on a daily basis and now I just can’t go a day without applying facial oil to my skin. I learned about the Alverde Wild Rose Facial Oil from my mum who loves it and I got a bottle of it back in June but never used it. I left it in Norway, so when my skin started feeling really thirsty, I ran and got a second bottle to finally try it. I was a bit worried because it’s designed for dry skin and some of the oils in it aren’t particularly good on my skin but I’ve been loving it, so far. It didn’t break me out and I love the subtle rose scent and the texture of the oil. It’s vegan and contains ingredients from certified organic agriculture like Jojoba Oil, Almond Oil, Peach Kernel Oil and Apple Seed Extract. The brand is also known for the fact that their products are free from silicones, mineral oils, synthetic fragrances and dyes.

Last but not least, I picked up a new moisturiser. About a year ago, I tried a few products from the French pharmacy brand Mixa and their Anti-Imperfection series that I really liked. So, when I saw that they have a new moisturiser from the same range, I had to have it. Mixa 2 in 1 Anti-Imperfection Moisturising Cream with Mattifying Silicate S and Purifying Zinc is suitable for sensitive and blemish-prone skin. It’s supposed to moisturise the skin while reducing spots and tightening the pores. The formula is paraben-free, non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic. The cream feels light but still nourishing and I haven’t used it for that long to say more about the effect on pores and pigmentation but it makes my skin soft and somehow smoother. It doesn’t keep it mattified for more than a couple of hours but no moisturiser does it for me anyway. The cream is great under make-up and I don’t even need a primer after applying it.

I recently added one more skincare item to my autumn routine but I’ll be preparing a separate post on it, as I’m really falling in love with it although it’s a bit too early to form an opinion.

Do you switch up your skincare regimen when seasons change and what’s your favourite product this autumn?

Superdrug Simply Pure Hydrating Serum

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This product got really popular, thanks to Sali Hughes and her love for it and years later, it’s still sold out most of the time. It’s a bit of a unicorn, actually, plus it always sits on the bottom shelf in Superdrug. Back in April, when me and my boyfriend were in London, I managed to get 5 bottles of the Superdrug Simply Pure Hydrating Serum and I’ve been using it ever since. The expectations were really high, so I wanted to wait at least 3 months to form an opinion.

This serum is from Superdrug‘s own brand and honestly, I’m not the biggest fan of the ingredients lists of their products. However, this one has an amazing blend of soothing, anti-inflammatory and moisturising ingredients for less than £3! I really don’t know how they’ve done this. Simply Pure Hydrating Serum is designed to replenish and nourish sensitive skin, to improve skin’s natural elasticity and to make the complexion smoother and more radiant.

The texture is more of a lotion rather than a serum which actually turns it into the perfect summer moisturiser for oily/combination skin. I have combination skin with oily T-zone but it’s also dehydrated which means my skin produces excess oil but lacks water. In the autumn/winter, I like to layer the serum with my creams and oils and the combination provides a great base for make-up. It sinks into the skin really well without leaving a sticky residue and feels very calming. The Simply Pure Hydrating Serum makes my skin soft, nourished, glowing and plump, it’s a real gem and I hope they never discontinue it.

Another great thing about it is that it comes with a pump and the formula is fragrance-free which is always a plus. I’m happy this serum doesn’t break me out. I use it day and night, applying it all over my face and neck and I’m surprised how long one bottle lasts.

Many of my friends and family are now using the Simply Pure Hydrating Serum, as well, we all have different skin types and we all love it.
I’m glad I have a backup of this product, as it’s a great basic face serum. Of course, there are no anti-ageing ingredients in it for this price but if your skin is a bit lackluster or dehydrated, I’d recommend getting a bottle or two from your local Superdrug or in case you’re travelling to the UK.

Two Affordable Body Lotions to Try

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When I was browsing through the body moisturiser aisle at the drugstore some days ago, I was pleasantly surprised by how many of the affordable brands are having body lotions with pumps. For me, it’s the most comfortable way to dispense the product and to control the amount of it, so I picked out two body lotions and decided to share my first impressions with you.

I keep the Ziaja Goat’s Milk Body Lotion (400 ml) by the sink because I really like using it as a hand moisturiser after washing my hands. It just absorbs so quickly although it has pretty thick texture and leaves my skin incredibly soft and smooth. It has a delicate scent that would be appropriate for men, too and this random purchase became one of my favourites. I even got their Orange Butter Body Lotion the other day and can’t wait to smell it.

If you’re looking for a sweet-smelling body moisturiser, I’d recommend checking out the Cottage Caramel Body Lotion. I almost feel like I could eat it, it smells sweet and warm at the same time and the aroma lasts pretty long time on the skin. The bottle is very slim, so it’s actually travel-friendly even if it’s 250 ml. The texture is lighter than the Ziaja one but it needs a bit more time to absorb. However, it still doesn’t leave any greasy feel to the skin and just makes it soft and nourished while you can continue with your work.

I’m really impressed by these affordable body lotions and I hope this post was helpful now that the weather is getting colder and colder.