Tag Archives: essence cosmetics

Empties #14


Usually this type of posts contain a lot of products but like I’ve mentioned before, I’m trying to do them more often and with less products now, so that they don’t get too long and boring. Here it is everything I’ve used up recently.

Skincare Products

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micellar Water – One of my favourite micellar waters. I like taking my makeup off with such products before cleansing my skin and this one is very gentle yet effective, a cult classic that doesn’t need too many words;
Bioderma Sensibio Mild Cleansing Foaming Gel – This is the cleanser from the same range and I love it, I already have a second bottle of it because it doesn’t really foam, it feels very soothing on the skin and leaves it soft and clean;
Balea Active Charcoal Sheet Mask – A fantastic budget sheet mask that contains Salicylic Acid and Zinc which is great if you have blemish-prone and oily skin. I use it when I feel that I need it or once a week because of my combination skin;
Sephora Algae Face Mask – This is the purifying sheet mask from Sephora and I have to say, I enjoy using almost all of their sheet masks. This one makes my skin look a bit brighter but definitely not matte. I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite one and I’m not sure if I’d repurchase but I don’t think it’s a bad sheet mask;
La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water Spray – Thermal sprays, floral mists and toners are must-haves for me all year round but especially in the summer. I love the cooling and soothing effect of this thermal water, it makes my skin soft and radiant without looking shiny;
La Roche-Posay Serozinc 
– This Zinc Sulfate solution for oily, blemish-prone skin is a huge love of mine and sadly, not available anywhere around me. I’m really sad I’ve used up another bottle of this miracle worker and I hope it will be soon easier to find;
La Roche-Posay Tolerian Ultra Fluide – A soothing lightweight cream for face and eyes that calms my skin and leaves it moisturised without making it more oily;
Balea Eye Cream with Lotus – This is probably my 5th tube of my favourite drugstore eye cream. I love the texture, it’s so light yet hydrating, the formula is fragrance-free and contains  Vitamin E, Panthenol, Almond, Jojoba, Aloe and Lotus Oils and Caffeine and Vitamin C;
KICKS Age Defence Turn Back Time Sun Protection SPF 30 – This sunscreen has a lovely apple scent and doesn’t break me out which is one of the most important things for me when it comes to SPF. It can look a bit more shiny on my combination skin but I much prefer this cream to many of the popular ones that tend to leave white cast or look too greasy or too chalky;

Makeup Products

Essence Stay Natural Concealer – One of those concealers in a pen form that has a brush on the end. I’m not sure exactly why but I really love this type of concealers. They’re somehow easy to use and as if the formula is always lightweight but with very good coverage and brightening effect;
Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil – My favourite eyebrow pencil! It’s precise, the shade is great for me, it’s not too dry or too creamy, it’s just perfect;
Essence Make Me Brow Gel – I have 5-6 of these in my beauty stash because the darker shade always seems to be out of stock and I think it’s a really nice setting gel for brows. It doesn’t make my brow hairs too crispy, it leaves them natural-looking and the tiny wand doesn’t pick up too much product;
Catrice All Matt Powder – There’s still a little bit left in the pan but it’s getting harder and harder to use the product. This is a finely-milled powder that mattifies my skin but also gives it a bit of a glow, I feel like it’s impossible to overdo it and now I really want to try more of the brand’s powders;
Catrice Beautifying Lip Smoother – This has been staying at the bottom of one of my bags for ages and I just wanted to say a few words about it because I got it thinking it might be similar to the Instant Light Lip Perfectors from Clarins. I don’t want to say it’s a horrible product but first of all, I don’t like the scent, it’s a sweet one but as if the product has expired and then it does make my lips look smooth and shiny without being too glossy but on the next day, they’re pretty dry. I used to keep it in my handbag trying to make myself use it during the day but it’s just not my favourite lip product;

Body Products

Balance Me Super Moisturising Hand Cream – Incredibly moisturising and soothing hand cream enriched with Shea Butter and Lanolin. The scent is similar to This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray;
Himalaya Herbals Baby Lotion – The best thing about this lotion is that it absorbs almost instantly without leaving any residue which makes it perfect for summer. The formula contains Almond Oil and Olive Oil and I really liked using it;
The Body Shop Mango Body Mist – Body mists are great in the summer, they don’t last that long on the skin but feel refreshing and smell sweet. Unfortunately, the top of this one broke, so it’s been really hard to use it up but the scent is very nice and not too overpowering.

Hope you’re having a great start to the new month!

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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?

October Favourites

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Not sure how in the last couple of years, the festive season begins in October but I feel like it’s almost December judging by the decorations everywhere. Luckily, we still have a lot of time to get ready for the holidays, so that we can simply enjoy autumn.

Although my skin isn’t happy about fall weather, at all, I’ve been trying to switch up a few products in my routine and hopefully soon there will be results. I’ve mentioned multiple times how much I love La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo [+] but I just realised I’ve never done a full review on it. In the past few weeks, I discovered the new La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo [+] Unifiant in the shade Light which is basically the same product but a tinted version of it. I have to say I love it because it has the same properties as my beloved Duo [+] but has a slight coverage that evens out the complexion. Also, most products from this type look quite orange or pink on me but this one is a pretty good match. I’ll be preparing a full review on this new product very soon.

Another skin saviour for me has been the REN Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist* (review here). It just keeps my skin radiant-looking, hydrated and it’s also great before applying my evening facial oil. I love how I can spritz it whenever I want throughout the day, even on top of my make-up.

I can’t believe I never included the L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche La Palette Lips in Nude*  in a monthly favourites. Perhaps, it’s because I’ve been using it all the time and just consider it as one of my daily staples without paying much attention. I mix together a few shades for a custom lip look or just apply one of the middle ones on its own, the colours are flattering on many skin tones and I’m in love with this palette. You can read more about this and the red lip palette here.

Another lipstick favourite of mine has been the Essence Matt Matt Matt Lipstick in the shade 02 Perfect Match and it shouldn’t be a secret by now that I love the brand’s lipsticks. It just doesn’t matter what kind of finish they have, they are always comfortable on the lips, there’s a really good variety of shades and they are super affordable. This particular lipstick has a gorgeous autumn colour, lasts for about 4 hours on me and doesn’t dry out my lips.

The two nail polishes I’ve been using the most (if not only) in October have been the L’Oréal Paris Color Riche à L’Huile Nail Varnishes in the shades 116 Café de Nuit and 224 Rose Ballet. If you want an opaque and shiny colour that goes on smoothly, look no further. These also have the same scent as the brand’s lipsticks and it lingers on for about a day on the nails. You can see how the nail polishes look on my nails here.

These are some of my favourite products this autumn season and it seems I’m still into my mauve shades rather than reaching for berry tones but it’s just how I feel at the moment. What have you been loving in the month of October?

*PR Samples

September Favourites

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As much as I am excited for fall, I always feel quite sad when summer’s over. Luckily, there still will be some warm and sunny days, so no need to be miserable.

One thing I’m not a fan of during September is that my skin starts acting up. It always does when seasons change but it’s too noticeable in September. My combination and dehydrated skin gets more oily around the T-zone and even more dehydrated than usual. That’s why I’m currently switching up my skincare routine a bit and I’ll be preparing a blog post on the matter soon.

A significant improvement in my skin condition can be seen thanks to the Sephora masks. Especially, their sheet masks, not only they feel relaxing and soothing but they also make my skin brighter, smoother and more hydrated. My favourite ones at the moment are the Anti-aging & Smoothing Orchid Face Mask and the Purifying & Detoxifying Algae Face Mask. As a night treatment, I’ve been loving the Sephora Lotus Sleeping Mask and the 8 ml size is enough for about 6 uses on my face and neck.

Eye patches have always been something that mostly makes me feel more relaxed rather than actually making a difference but the Purederm Collagen Eye Zone Mask changed my mind. First of all, these patches really stay in place under the eyes and feel comfortable and cooling. The eye mask is enriched with Collagen, Vitamin E and Green Tea Extract and brightens the area under my eyes although it doesn’t erase my dark cirlces because there is simply nothing that can do that. The eye patches don’t leave any sticky residue, the product gets absorbed quickly and makes the skin smooth and nourished. I like that the product comes in a resealable zipper pouch, so that the 30 patches don’t dry out. The brand is Korean but it can be found in some drugstores around Europe. I’ll be getting at least one more of these because it’s perfect for travelling.

During the month of September, my lips, elbows and knuckles have been pretty dry. That’s why I love having a multi-purpose moisturiser with me and the biggest help this month came from Elizabeth Arden and their Fragrance Free Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant. I prefer to use it as an overnight treatment because it can feel a bit heavy but I have to say, it’s a true skin saviour and a must-have for my entire family.

I haven’t tried that many new make-up products in the past few weeks, so there’s just one favourite this time but it’s already a big love. Essence blushes are some of the best ones not only at the drugstore but in general, they are super pigmented, finely-milled and they come in a variety of shades. I adore this Satin Touch Blush in the shade 20 Satin Love because it’s in the most beautiful rosewood shade that is perfect for autumn. There’s a slight sheen to it but it’s not glittery, so don’t be put off by that.

These products are the ones I’ve been reaching for the most and even needing them, considering the changes in my skin condition. What saves your skin during the summer to fall transition time?

Get Glossy!

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I never thought I would wear lip gloss on a regular basis but something changed a couple of years ago. For me, glosses have always been a bit too sticky, never moisturising and way too glittery, so even if there were new launches, I just didn’t even want to hear about them.

However, make-up nowadays gets better and better and I realised there are actually brilliant lip glosses out there. I wasn’t sure whether to mention my favourite Lancôme Juicy Shakers here but for me, they are more of a lip oil rather than a gloss, so I’ll stick to the proper lip glosses.

The product that converted me to a lip gloss fan was Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector and I always have one in my handbag since I discovered them. My favourite shades are 06 Rosewood Shimmer (browny nude), 07 Toffee Pink Shimmer (dusky rose) and 08 Plum Shimmer (muted berry). These glosses are moisturising, thanks to the Shea Butter, Vitamin E and A added, they don’t feel sticky and they are candy-flavoured.

KICKS Lip Fusion in the shade Delicious* has a similar idea but it’s half the price and the difference comes from the fact that it’s much less pigmented and there are only two shades for now. The formula is still quite nourishing, as it contains Jojoba Oil and Vitamin E, it’s a handbag-friendly product and I really like it.

My most recent discovery and love must be Dior Addict Milky Tint in the shade 286 Milky Plum (you can see swatches of all 6 shades here). It’s really different from the others because it has a milky finish, it’s not a typical lip gloss, it’s incredibly moisturising and gives a smooth and plump look to the lips. Also, this shade is a beautiful lilac one that looks quite fresh but it’s not necessarily a spring/summer colour.

More budget-friendly options are the lip glosses from Essence and Golden Rose. Essence have some of my favourite glosses and they were the first drugstore ones to catch my eye in a long time. I’ve used up a few of them and then a dear friend of mine sent to me this trio of minis that I always travel with. Along with Golden Rose Colour Sensation LipGloss in the shade 103, these are just lovely, sweet-smelling but not too overpowering, non-sticky glosses that I enjoy just as much as my high-end ones.

Now I know that comfortable and beautiful lip glosses exist and these are some of my absolute favourite ones. Do you have any other recommendations for me? I’d love to try more, considering I’m not so sceptical when it comes to glosses anymore.

*PR Sample