Empties: December 2014

Even though I did a late November empties, I still managed to gather up a nice amount of products in time for my final empties post of the year for the month of December. There's a few things here I've been working on for a while, a few regulars and another couple of makeup items I decided to finally get rid of and not "take with me" into the new year. I also switched to a new empties bag on January 1st so no cheating - these are all from the last part of December.

Biotherm Gentle Exfoliating Milk 75ml ( here )
I've been through quite a few of this, both samples and full-size. This is a decent body scrub that isn't too expensive and really does last a long time. I've still got a few deluxe size samples of this, but when those are finished I'm very ready to try something else. I'll probably buy this again at some point down the line though.

Biotherm Anti-Drying Body Milk 125ml ( here )
Similarly to the body exfoliator, this is another Biotherm product I return to again and again. I don't have a full-size of this at the moment, but I will. This is a very nice light, but moisturising body lotion that absorbs well and has a nice faint smell of citrus.

La Prairie Cellular Mineral Body Exfoliator store-made sample ( here )
This is amazing. I always ask for a sample of this when I'm making a purchase at the La Prairie counter as it's amazing, but I just don't see myself paying a whopping $125 for a body exfoliator. That being said, it's really good stuff, you don't need much and if you struggle with getting your self-tan to apply evenly - this just might be your new best friend.

Dior - J'Adore Beautifying Body Creme 200ml ( here )
I've used my fair share of perfume specific body lotions, and this is probably the best one. While these products are usually pretty average in terms of product, and the smell is the big selling point, with Dior's J'Adore Body Creme you get a really nice product as well. If they sold this unscented I'd consider getting one to use all year round. This moisturises so incredibly well, and leaves skin smooth like silk. I've still got about half left of my J'Adore perfume bottle, so I just might get another tub of this.

Lush - Massage Bar ( here )
I don't remember what the massage bar I bought along with this tin was called, and I don't see it on their website either so I guess it doesn't matter. I will say though, that I really enjoyed using this as a moisturising treatment after showering in the evening. Leaving it to absorb over night, I would have really smooth and moisturised skin by morning. I'm of course keeping the tin, don't worry, and will probably buy another massage bar as well. I'll probably have to buy another tin though as they've changed the massage bar shapes to oval, how typical.

Redken Hair Cleansing Cream Shampoo 300ml ( here )
This was my first try at a clarifying shampoo and it was alright. It's hard for me to say for sure as it's the only one I've used meaning I've got nothing to compare it to. I will say that it did definitely clarify the scalp, but was also incredibly drying. I would always use this in conjunction with a hair mask right after. I will say this did smell deliciously of cirtus!

Kerastase Resistance Masque Force Architecte 200ml ( here )
This is a very nice mask, especially if you've got very distressed and damaged hair. My hair is mostly just dry at the moment as I've left it alone meaning no coloring and minimal styling for a while, but this was still a very nice treat. It didn't weigh hair down, but just improved on the overall texture and feel. Not a product I'd be hard pressed to try again.

Jason Antioxidant Cranberry Pure Natural Hand Soap 473ml ( here )
Not much more to say about these hand washes as I've featured one (or more) in every empties post for a while, but; still love them, use them and purchase them.

Jason Power Smile Brightening Peppermint Mouthwash 473ml ( here )
Another staple. I really love switching over to the more natural stuff, especially dental care as this really gets into your body. My teeth have also felt better since making the switch, so if you are considering making the switch as well, but feel unsure if the natural products are up to the task; I think they are!

Clarins Extra-Comfort Anti-Pollution Cleansing Cream 200ml ( review - here )
This stuff lasted for ever. It was a very nice gentle morning cleanse that I really enjoyed and I kinda want to buy this again once I go through some more cleansers. Really good stuff.

HealGel Face 50ml ( review coming - here )
This is a lovely soothing moisturiser that is really light, but still moisturises really well and really makes skin both look and feel healthy.

Supergoop Skin Soothing Mineral Sunscreen with Olive Polyphenols Broad Spectrum SPF 40review coming - here )
My first venture into the Supergoop face sunscreens. I played it safe going for the "soothing" version for sensitive skin types and the two of us got on really well. It's a bit runny, but if you store it upside down there's no problem.

Caudalie Vinosource S.O.S Thirst Quenching Serum 30ml ( review - here )
This has been a long-time favourite and one I've returned to again and again. For some reason unbeknown to me, it didn't wow me as much as usual this time around. I've re-purchased another moisturising serum to replace this for now, but I think I'll give this another shot down the line.

Bioderma Make-up Removing Micelle Solution 500ml ( here )
The best makeup remover. I drench a large square cotton pad in this and it gently and efficiently removes every kind of makeup. This is also the only thing I can use on even my waterline. If you've got sensitive eyes that can't handle almost anything, this just might be your saviour.

Eve Lom  TLC Cream 15ml ( here )
I finished this a long time ago, but left it my parents house and only came across this at christmas. This was a very nice thick cream, perfect if your skin is in dire need of a lot of moisture. I combined this with a light layer of the HealGel Face last winter and it was almost a bit of a La Mer dupe. Though not as good and the two products are both not cheap either so it's no money-saving trick. I'll be sticking to my La Mer for now, but if you don't like or want to try La Mer, but are still looking for a really thick moisturiser, this could be a really good option.

La Prairie Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Dry Oil 3ml ( here )
This continues to underwhelm me - especially with that price tag. Arguments are to be made that I'm still fairly young (coming up on 26 on my birthday on 31 January), so this isn't really targeted for me. Still, it's toted as a healing product, which should be good for almost all skin types, and the main gripe I have with this is it leaves my skin feeling dry by the early afternoon. I'll still go through all my samples, still waiting for that wow moment everyone else seems to have had with this. I don't mind not being tempted to shell out $300 for this though.

Caudalie Polyphenol C15 Overnight Detox Oil 1ml x 2 ( here )
This however, at "only" $52 by comparison, has been a much better match with my particular skin. I've got too many night oils and serums going at the moment, but this is on my to-buy list and has been for a while. I don't know about detoxing, but I will say that by morning my skin is more calm and moisturised than it was when I went to bed. My skin tends to get more "angry" during the winter months as it gets really cold in Norway, so anything that can re-balance and soothe is a godsend. I'm happy I've still got a few more samples of this.

Lancome Hydra Zen SPF15 15ml ( review - here )
This is a nice enough moisturiser. I use this for my early evening skincare routine - when taking off my makeup when I get home, but not quite the time to slap on the night treatments yet. This does indeed have a nice soohing effect on the skin, which is perfect when you've just come back home and taken your makeup of. I really enjoyed this for the purpose I used it for, but I won't buy the full-size for that alone. I will say though, that I used to use Lancome's Hydra Zen moisturisers exclusively for years in my late teens/early twenties and my skin was pretty much in perfect condition - so the point is I do recommend the line.

Kanebo Sensai Silky Purifying Cleansing Balm 30ml ( here )
I think they've gone ahead and changed this, if only the packaging. I will say that this is a very nice balm. It has a lighter texture than many others, so if you don't like the feel of a thick balm then this could be a very nice option whilst still getting that coveted deep cleanse.

Declaré StressBalance Anti-Irritation Serum 5ml
I used this up during my exam periods in December, which if there was any time to put an anti-stress serum to the test - that would be it. I will say I did feel like it did calm my skin down and I had less problems than I usually have during those stressful weeks. I wasn't blown away by this, but I just might buy a full-size when I'm getting to the last few weeks before handing in my Bachelor Thesis in June.

Vichy Id√©alia Life Serum 3ml x 2 ( here )
I used this over the holidays and I will say I quite liked it. I don't know if it had any amazing skincare benefits, but my skin did feel more balanced after using this. What I particularly liked was the glow it gave. It's similar to the effect Estee Lauder's Idealist Serum gives, which I used to use for those of you that's been with the blog for a long time might remember. The glow was my favourite part of Idealist, but this gives the same effect for less than half the price. I just might try a full size of this.

Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment Cream 100ml ( here )
I've been through so many full size and deluxe samples of this I don't think anyones in any doubt anymore; I really like this. It's a lovely hand cream to use during the day, and whilst I still enjoy using it I'm going to be trying a few other hand creams for a while.

Muji Peelable Cotton 60 Pieces ( here )
As much as I love the Shiseido Cottons the 60 pack I can buy here is just way too expensive to use on cotton pads monthly. Therefore I decided to try these 100% Cotton cotton pads by Muji and have to say I really really like them. There's 60 pieces, but I peel them in two so really there's 120. Absolutely recommend these.

Hourglass No. 28 Lip Treatment Oil 7.5ml ( here )
I remember all the hype that surrounded the release of this, and it's definitely nice, but nothing unbelievably amazing. It's the kind of product I'm happy I tried, I enjoyed using it and I just might buy it again, but I don't feel like a part of me is missing if I don't.

Make Up For Ever Lip Palettediscontinued? )
This was a fun palette that I loved to use to mix the exact colour I wanted. However, as you can tell, I didn't end up using it much - it was just too much hassle to bother when I have perfectly fine, ready-to-go lipsticks that are also to-go. This is old, so I'm tossing the pans of lipstick, but keeping the compact.

Chanel Glossimer in 169 'Jalousie' 5.5g ( review - here )
This is an incredible lip gloss. It's really pigmented, is super glossy and a bright fun gorgeous pink. I used up most of it, but it's old so I'm throwing the tiny bit that's left as I'm uncomfortable with using it. When I've pared down my relatively not-that-large lipgloss "collection" I really would like to buy this again.

Revlon Matte Lipstick in 006 'Really Red'here )
This is a fantastic red lipstick and if you are just venturing into the land of red lipsticks this could be a fabulous first. It's super pigmented, long-lasting with a matte finish that isn't at all drying. I've loved using this with a clear gloss on top - it looks amazing. I've had this for a few years now and so decided it was time to get rid of it - especially as I have a few other reds by for example Guerlain that I would prefer to focus on as they are more expensive.

Dior Addict Gloss in 643 'Diablotine' 1ml ( here )
This is a really nice gloss. It's super sparkly and comfortable on the lips. Dior's glosses are famed for being non-sticky and even this updated version of the Addict Lipgloss has the same star quality. I've always been keen on buying Diablotine, and this little sample hasn't made me want the full-size any less. Perhaps this summer?

MAC Mineralize Eye Shadow in Summer Haze 2.2g ( limited edition )
I bought this as I had seen swatches of it online being a beautiful champagne colour. Mine though, had almost all gold in it and turns out a very orange sparkly shade. With my pale skin it looks absolutely horrifying - it just might be the most unflattering colour of eyeshadow I've ever used. I've wanted to find ways to get it to work, but decided finally to just give up. I'll see if any family/friends would like it, if not I'll back to Mac it.

Givenchy Eye Liner Pencil 0,37g ( review - here )
This was horrible and I have no idea why it's "stuck around" for so long. I guess it managed to hide away between the other eyeliners as it's so small, but I spotted it when going through them this time around and into the bin it goes.

Yves Saint Laurent Babydoll Mascara 2ml ( here )
I've used quite a few samples of this and I still really like it. Plastic bristles aren't usually my cup of tea, and I still prefer natural, but this mascara is really really good if you want a more dramatic lash.

Bare Minerals Lash Domination Mascara 5,5ml ( here )
This grew on me. Initially I hated it. It has plastic bristles with a wet formula. The biggest no-no was that it would really hurt if the bristles poked at my lash line. I managed to avoid this, for the most part, as I got used to using it, but while it's nice it still wasn't amazing, and I'd rather have 0 days of eye stabbing. Controversial as that may sound.

No7 Sheer Temptation Lipstick in 30 Smoulder 2,5g ( here )
This was really nice initially. With one swipe you get a really sheer red tint to the lips, but with a really glossy finish. This is really buildable though, so you can start out with a slight tint in the earlier hours of the day, and build this up to a bright glossy red lip. I'm getting rid of this as it's gone off and smells of cardboard, but I wouldn't mind owning this again. It's a good product.

Normal: 14
Deluxe Sample: 4
Sample: 5
Makeup Item: 9
Deluxe Sample/Mini Size Makeup Item: 3
Sample Makeup Item: 1
Nail polish: 0
Mini nail polish: 0
Jumbo Size: 0

2014 TOTAL:
Normal: 164
Deluxe Sample: 97
Sample: 106
Makeup Item: 130
Deluxe Sample/Mini Size Makeup Item: 26
Sample Makeup Item: 6
Nail polish: 12
Mini nail polish: 18
Jumbo Size: 7

So there you have it - the total of products I either finished or threw away in the whole year of 2014! 164 normal sized body and skincare items and a whopping 130 makeup items. Obviously most of those have been downsized, but either way - that's a lot of makeup products less to store! Add to that 97 deluxe size samples in the skincare section again and another 106 samples!

I don't have as much per category going into 2015, which was the goal, so I might end up finishing less in total - but I'll still aim for going through as much as I can in any category I feel do need downsizing. For the next year that will definitely be shampoo, and hair styling products. Body care I've gotten under control, including shower gels, which is great. I've accumulated a lot of skincare lately, but I do go through those so as long as I hold off on purchasing for a while, there shouldn't really be a problem. Then there's the makeup.

While I'll definitely be wanting to go through a few makeup products (I'm doing pan that palette and also continuing with my use-it-up project, post coming shortly), and will probably keep doing regular downsizing of stuff I don't really like, my main focus this year will be to rotate through everything I have and make sure I get around to using everything. This way should I find something I don't really like, I'll get rid of it, or I'll just re-discover a lot of old favourites. Either way I'm really excited to see such big numbers for last year, which makes the amount I have now seem a whole lot less overwhelming.

For everyone else trying to downsize, going on low-buys, project panning, palette panning, you name it - a big massive good luck! Let me know what your plans are for your "collection" the coming year and if you are doing any particular projects on your blog and/or youtube channel, I'd love it if you'd leave a link in the comments section as I would love to check it out!

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  1. AMAZING job with the products! I definitely need to continue to use things up in the new year, I did some more downsizing yesterday and I always feel good after that. I am giving a bunch of makeup to family members, but I definitely still have a ways to go...

  2. Thank you! Downsizing feels amazing! I don't think I've ever ended up regretting a single thing I've gotten rid of either, so that's even more motivating. Good luck with paring down your collection this year! Are you doing any specific projects or low-buys?

  3. nice job as usual! I was kinda meh about hourglass lip oil too

  4. Yeah the applicator felt really nice, and the consistency felt good on application, but it never did too much else.. :/
    And Thank You! :) xx


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