A whole lot of empties and a few disappointing products

I’m back with a new empties post! (Read my previous one here from seven (!) months ago) After months of collecting empty bottles, I finally have enough to write a beefy post. WOO-HOO!

There are a bunch of things (14 to be exact) to talk about, so let’s dive right in.

1. Garnier micellar cleansing water

Pros: easy to use (apply on a cotton pad and swipe over face in lieu of a cleanser in the morning), feels gentle on skin (read cons below **), a bottle lasts a couple of months, and is super accessible at drugstores. 

Cons: this irritated my eyes and made my eczema flare up there which I never got before until after using this micellar water. It does nothing to get rid of dead skin/flakes, and contains a cleansing agent that is not good for the skin.

Would I repurchase? Nope. 

2. Caudalie make-up removing cleansing oil

Pros: super effective at removing waterproof mascara, lasts a while (almost four months for me), and pump bottle makes it super easy to use.

Cons: I have an inkling this was also clogging my pores…it has a whole slew of oils in it so I wouldn’t be surprised if this wasn’t helping my acne flare up. However, if you have dry skin and no acne then this might work for you.

Would I repurchase? Maybe. I will say that I recently repurchased the Clinique’s take the day off cleansing balm and I can’t remember why I stopped using it in the first place-it’s gentle and definitely feels like it gets all the oil and makeup gunk leftover from a hard day’s work.

3. Oskia renaissance cleansing gel

Pros: love the gel consistency, super gentle especially for eczema prone skin, travel-friendly, and my face always felt really soft and nourished after cleansing.

Cons: not a fan of the fact that you have to apply this cleanser on dry skin because my face is always wet from brushing my teeth or rinsing my eyes out in the morning. Also, the hefty price tag doesn’t making it wallet friendly BUT, I will say that the bottle lasted me about four months of daily use.

Would I repurchase? Probably not. For the price and the fuss of having to pat my face dry before applying this cleanser, I’d rather just go with something I could use for when my face is wet. However, if you have really sensitive, eczema prone skin and you don’t mind any of the things I mentioned, then you might want to give this cleanser a try.

4. Thayer’s witch hazel toner

*I didn’t use this on my face, I only used this to treat ingrown hair. 

Pros: great for managing ingrown hair (pour some toner on a cotton pad and swipe over ingrown/irritated parts).

Cons: a lot of product can come out if you’re not careful since the squeeze bottle can be hard to control, and didn’t last as long as I thought it would. 

Would I repurchase? No because it wasn’t super memorable and I could probably use something more effective for ingrowns (e.g. Fur ingrown concentrate).

5. Humphrey’s witch hazel toner

*I didn’t use this on my face, I only used this to treat ingrown hair. 

Pros: easy to find in drugstores and Amazon, price (~$10) is decent for the amount of product that you get in the bottle, and effective at managing ingrown hair

Cons: leaves a sticky residue behind and smell is somewhat off-putting but probably because it’s straight up witch hazel without anything else in it to create a more pleasant scent. 

Would I repurchase? No because I couldn’t wait to finish this. Similar sentiment to the Thayer’s witch hazel toner (above). Maybe witch hazel just isn’t my jam. 

6. Whamisa organic flowers deep rich toner

Pros: super hydrating, has a light scent, and a bottle lasts a good couple of months.

How I use: after washing my face and patting it dry, I pour this toner into my hands and pat it into my skin. I layer until I feel my skin is hydrated enough. I usually use 2-3 layers. Then, I apply Herbivore’s lapis oil and Make P:rem safe relief cream over that).

Cons: the price ($39) and it’s not accessible at major beauty stores like Sephora or drugstores. I got mine at Glow Recipe when I first got it but it’s also available at Credo (clean beauty store).

Would I repurchase? YES. This makes me skin feel so hydrated and soft. It’s perfect for winter and without it, my skin feels dry even with lots of moisturizer. 

7. The Ordinary glycolic acid 7% toning solution

Pros: really affordable ($8.70 for 8 ounces), effective chemical exfoliation (if your skin is not sensitive to rose water), and a single bottle lasts a good couple of months.

Cons: the rose water in it irritated my skin and wasn’t gentle enough for my eczema prone skin, and it can be hard to find in stores. And who knows what will happen to the brand next after their strange and controversial year

Would I repurchase? No. 

8. Indie Lee CoQ-10 toner

Pros: feels nice and refreshing to use post-face wash and is gentle on my eczema/acne-prone skin.

Cons: the spray nozzle makes it hard to get the right amount of product out. I feel like I have to spray about 10 times into a cotton pad before it feels saturated enough (TL;DR: this product doesn’t last very long). That considered, $32 for a toner that will run out quite quickly isn’t the best value for what you get.

Would I repurchase? No, unless maybe they changed their packaging to make it easier to get the toner out. Still searching for the perfect post cleanse toner…

9. Make P:rem uv defense blue ray sun gel

Pros: high spf (50), feels moisturizing on the skin, doesn’t leave a white cast, doesn’t break me out, travel-friendly, and a bottle will probably last all summer.

Cons: this made my oily skin feel a little tacky afterwards but honestly, most spfs do that; I don’t like that the pump makes it hard to get all the product out so you’re basically left with a decent amount that you can’t get out unless you cut it open.

Would I repurchase? Probably not because I really like the eltaMD one that I am using right now that’s meant for sensitive and acne prone skin.

10. Glossier invisible shield

Pros: cute packaging, travel-friendly, feels hydrating yet lightweight, doesn’t leave a white cast, and it’s perfect for humid summer days mostly spent away from the sun.

Cons: SPF is not high enough for strong UV ray days or beach days, a bottle doesn’t last very long, and there are just better sunscreens on the market for the price range.

Would I repurchase? No, because I really like my eltaMD one.

11. Supergoop! unseen sunscreen

Pros: absorbs really quickly into the skin, doesn’t leave skin feeling tacky-it actually left my skin feeling matte (which I later realized wasn’t necessarily a good thing), travel-friendly, and doesn’t leave a white cast.

Cons: I think this mattifying effect might have been trapping my oils in my pores…I’m no scientist but I’ve used “mattifying” products before and they always seem to break me out. This time, I definitely know better. Why do cosmetic brands insist that mattifying is a good thing when the consequence is clogged pores??

Would I repurchase? No, no, no.

12. Differin acne gel

Pros: Honestly, I can’t even remember. This seemed to dry out my pimples but then I would wake up, wash my face, and things just looked the same. So actually, there are no pros-except for the fact that this is available at drugstores.

Cons: made my entire face including my lips super dry. I don’t think this is meant for someone who has acne via clogged pores. I think this is meant for more severe acne. Either way, I believe there are probably better retinol products out there that won’t strip all the moisture out of your pores like this one did for me.

Would I repurchase? No.

13. Fur oil

Pros: Super hydrating, dropper makes it super easy to use and control the amount of product that you want, and I honestly feel like it softened the hair on my body.

Cons: can be messy since it’s an oil, can be hard to get all the product out towards the end, and a single bottle goes rather quickly especially if you use it on your legs, and for the price-I have to wonder, if I could just apply some body oil and it will have the same effect.

Would I repurchase? Maybe, if I feel like splurging. Or, if they lower the price for a bottle.

14. Mermaid dry shampoo

Pros: doesn’t make hair feel chalky or dry after using it.

Cons: needs a decent amount of work to get it to blend into dark hair, the opening for it was incredibly difficult to get open (jammed a spoon handle to poke through the opening) and I’m not sure I even got it right since product falls out even when its “closed” (TL;DR: not great for dark hair, messy, and hard to open).

the top of the dry-shampoo shampoo container which is very hard to open when you first get it

Would I repurchase? No, mostly because it’s messy and it doesn’t do much for my oily hair. Still searching for the perfect dry shampoo…

That’s everything for now. It will probably be a few months before I do another one of these posts but I hope this was helpful. Now, it’s time to finally recycle and toss out these empties.

Thanks for stopping by.

See you in my next post!

Sophie 🙂



Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. This is not an ad. All opinions are my own.