February Empties

This is a very Nivea-heavy post, for some reason!

Soap and Glory Scrub Your Nose in It

Soap and Glory Scrub Your Nose in It, 125ml

Soap and Glory’s Scrub Your Nose in It is a minty, bright green scrub and exfoliating mask – you can use it just as a normal scrub, or leave it on longer for a mask. This is a really nice product, and one that’s lasted me nearly a year, with a good 6 months of twice weekly scrubs and once a week full-face mask. It’s very very scrubby, so not good for those with sensitive skin, but I like a rougher scrub so that I feel like it’s cleansing! This suffered in comparison to St Ives’ Apricot Scrub, which has become my Holy Grail scrub for normal use, and so for the last few months this has been used just for masks. I’m not sure that it’s “pore-refining” or whether I’ve looked “more radiant”, but it is a nice exfoliator. I got this in the big Christmas bundle (The “Pink Big” Tote) in 2010, which I paid £25 for. A tube of this currently retails at £7.50. I probably wouldn’t buy this again, because I like St Ives much better, and it’s half the price.

Nivea Soft, 200ml

Nivea Soft, 200ml

I was given this by my mum, who was on the search for a new moisturiser, and bought this only to discover that she couldn’t stand the smell. To me, it just smells clean – there’s a slight baby powder-ish smell, but nothing too strong. This isn’t a very exciting moisturiser, but it gets things done. I liked it, but I prefer a thicker body butter (or even the original dark blue Nivea cream), while this was like a very thick body lotion in a pot. I wouldn’t buy it again, but it wasn’t bad. This is currently in Boots for £4.28.

Nivea Essential Care Lip Balm, 4.8g

Nivea Essential Care Lip Balm, 4.8g

This is one of the lip balms I got in this set in September, and I’ve just used it up today. This was my least favourite of the four, because after about three weeks of use, the texture of it changed completely, from a solid lip balm to a squidgy Vaseline-type texture, which meant that it couldn’t really be used as a stick balm, but had to be applied by dabbing. I always got too much, which I think is why I’ve used this one up first! I didn’t like this at all (and I used the last centimetre or so as heel cream!) and I wouldn’t recommend it, but no other Nivea balm I’ve ever had has done that, so it might just be a funny one. I got this as part of a 4 for £4 deal, but on its own this sells for £1.65.

Nivea Happy Time Shower Cream, 250ml

Nivea Happy Time Shower Cream, 250ml

I picked Happy Time up along with Free Time when searching for a new shower gel, and all Nivea body wash was £1 in Boots. Although I adore Orange Blossom scents, I found this one rather lacklustre, more orange squash than sunny Mediterranean landscape. I much prefer Free Time, which has a very intriguing green smell. I also think I prefer a clear shower gel to a creamy one, just for feeling cleaner (which is silly). I would happily use this again for £1, but perhaps not for £1.95, its usual price – it’s still on offer at Boots at the moment, but I’ve got plenty of shower gel at the moment!

What’s the best shower gel scent you’ve tried? I really like Lush’s Flying Fox for an evening shower, but I need something citrus or minty for the morning to wake me up!

Asha x

January Empties

I know this post is well into February, but here’s a little round-up of what I used up in January.

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Johnson’s Daily Essentials Hydrating 24hour Day Cream

This day cream is really moisturising, and it’s great value for money at around £4 for 50ml. This pot lasted me about 4 months, and I’ve moved straight onto my next pot. I like that it’s light enough not to feel sticky – you can put make-up on right away – and it contains SPF 15, which is great for giving just a little protection on a normal day. I also like the glass jar, which makes it feel a lot more expensive than it is!

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Samples of Lush Eau Roma and Ultrabland, Sample of Dove Visiblecare Renewing Creme Body Wash

These small pots from Lush are part of my long-term hunt for a good, adult cleanser after years of using harsh Clean and Clear anti-acne cleanser (despite never having any problem with spots as a teen – go on, hate me). I realised that it was far more astringent than my slightly dry skin needed, and started to look for a more comforting cleanser. I love Clarins’ Water Comfort peach cleanser, but at £19 for 200ml, I thought that was rather too much for my student budget!

I popped into Lush, where the very helpful assistant offered me samples of a few things to see what I liked, and wow, am I glad that she did. Many people had recommended Ultrabland to me, so I got a sample of that…

I hated it! It was so greasy and horrible, like rubbing butter into my skin. The consistency really made me squirm, and even after very very liberal application of toner to remove it, I still had to actually wash my face with soap to get rid of the feeling (which is really not the point of cleanser). I used the rest of this sample up as a shaving cream. I can’t say I’d recommend it!

The top pot contained cotton pads soaked with Eau Roma toner water, which I love, and have repurchased a big bottle of (£7.25 for 250ml). It’s really refreshing and soothing at the same time, even though I’m not the most enormous fan of lavender, and Boyfriend always says I smell nice when I’ve used it. I also got a sample of the 9 to 5 cleanser, which I love and have repurchased (£9.25 for 240ml). Post about that coming soon!

The little bottle I can only assume I got free as a sample from Dove at some point – I discovered it while I was having a clear out in my room. For that reason, my review might be slightly un-useful, since I disliked the consistency of this product also (but it might have been past its use-by date). I found this far too thick for a shower gel, and while it was very very moisturising, its lack of foam meant I didn’t feel like it really made me clean! Very nice for shaving with, though.

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Alberto Balsam Raspberry Conditioner, L’Oreal Elvive Nutri-Gloss Shine Conditioner

Is it just me, or does everyone go through conditioner about three times as fast as shampoo? Maybe I just really use a lot…? Anyway, here are two conditioners I got through while using my Aussie Miracle Moist shampoo (still going!). The Alberto Balsam is fairly basic, and while it does the job, I’ve used far better conditioners that make me think it’s worth spending £3 rather than the £1 this costs. The L’Oreal Elvive conditioner, though, I loved, and would definitely repurchase if it were on offer. I think its regular price of £4.50 is a little steep – I don’t mind spending a lot on shampoo, since it lasts me ages, but when I go through a bottle of conditioner every two weeks, it needs to be a bit more economical.

What have you enjoyed using in the cold weather? Have you got any recommendations of cleansers for 20-something, slightly dry skin?

Asha x

Product review: N-Spa Body Butters

Nirvana Spa has recently overhauled its N-Spa range of bath and body products, which has both good and bad points.

The products themselves seem nicer, and I like the introduction of more citrus-y flavours, but I’m sad they’ve got rid of my favourite (Blueberry) and the chocolate-y, sweet-y flavours. The range is also much more limited, going from 7 or 8 fruit and 5 or 6 chocolate flavours, to just 5 or 6 fruit flavours – and not every product is in every flavour! I would happy buy lots of grapefruit or passionfruit body butter, but they just decided not to do a body butter for these, just body lotion. I hate body lotion with a passion.

Anyway, I happen to have one of both the new and old style body butters to compare today. Here they are:

The old style on the left, and the new on the right.

You can see the new style, which I much prefer to the older one, though I will miss the strange ‘The wise man says…’ on the bottles.* It’s also obvious from just looking at them that the new formulation is much more like a body butter than a lotion, whereas the old one is very wet. What’s very strange is that I had two sets of old-style body butter minis for Christmas, and they were perfect, thick and buttery and really nice. I don’t understand why the larger tubs are so wet!

I’m currently really struggling to finish the blueberry butter before I can move on to the mango one. They both smell divine, but when it comes down to it, the old formulation just doesn’t do it for me. It leaves me feeling sticky and I don’t think it ever really sinks in, since it never leaves my skin as soft as others. The new formulation is comparable to the Body Shop’s butters, which is great, since it sells for £3, less than a quarter of the price! The only downside, as far as I can see, is the very limited range of scents it comes in (mango, raspberry, coconut, and shea butter). Luckily, I love the first two, but I’m not the hugest fan of coconut or shea butter…

Tempted? I can definitely recommend the new style butter! My arms now smell like mangoes and this makes me very happy 🙂

 

 

 

 

*”Inspiration”, said the wise man “springs from blue skies and a purple patch. Sitting under the stars at midnight you might see the indigo light and discover the answer in velvet smooth exterior. And perhaps… when daylight comes we shall taste vitality in a delicious burst of superberry inside.” I mean, what?