February Empties & Throwaways

Wow, it’s the second week of March already! I was actually planning to do an empties post in January, but it’s taken me quite a while to publish this post. I get easily distracted and have a hard time sticking to the same product, so it was a while before I was able to get through a couple of products I wanted to include. Oops.

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Empties

Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser, 6 oz/177 ml

After running out of this, I’ve found that I actually miss it more than I thought I would. This is very gentle and I love using this as a second cleanse, or as my only one on mornings and days where I’m lazy and don’t have much makeup on. The rose scent is a plus for me. I also like the texture, and how the creamy gel is almost bouncy (I know not everyone is a fan of it, though). More details on this here in my huge Glossier post. I will likely repurchase this at some point.

I purchased this from Glossier for $18.

Pixi Glow Tonic, 3.4 oz/100 ml

This contains 5% glycolic acid and is a mild exfoliating toner. I got this as I’ve heard a lot of good things about it and wanted to try it for myself. I liked it enough while I was using it and it was effective, but I’m not a fan of the strong, perfume-y scent and my skin can tolerate a stronger AHA so I won’t be repurchasing this. I also feel like this is overpriced for the amount you get. I believe the 8.5 oz/250 ml size retails for $29.

I purchased this from Target for $15, but it’s available from many retailers.

Etude House Moistfull Collagen Sleeping Pack, 3.38 oz/100 ml

I’ve had this one lying around forever! I bought this a long time ago when I had no idea what sleeping packs were. I thought you had to apply a super thick layer on your face before going to bed like a regular mask, so for the longest time, sleeping packs were extremely unappealing to me (don’t ask me why I bought this). Because of that, I actually tried to use this as a regular mask to try and use it up… which didn’t do much for my face. After I figured out how sleeping packs worked and used this correctly, I found that this was actually decent! I liked the light, gel-like texture and the scent, but it was nothing exciting though, so I stopped using it again. Now I’ve finally managed to finish it by using it as a body moisturizer, where it did a surprisingly good job. I won’t be repurchasing this though.

I purchased this from Amazon for $11, but it’s available from many retailers.

BareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream, 1.18 oz/35 ml

I’m not a fan of the BareMinerals brand, nor have I ever tried out anything else from them. I don’t have anything particularly against them- it’s just not an appealing brand to me personally. However I did pick this tinted moisturizer up after hearing a lot of good reviews when it first came out, and I have to say, I agree with them! This gives light coverage and blends in very nicely, with a slightly dewy finish. I find that I prefer to set this with a tiny bit of powder as it stays a little tacky on the skin. This also has SPF 30, although I wouldn’t rely on it for actual UV protection. I may repurchase this at some point. I wear Natural 05, which is a medium-toned, neutral shade.

I purchased this from Sephora for $29.50. However I noticed recently that you can get it on Amazon for as low as $23!

Throwaways

Nature Republic Rose Real Nature Ampoule, 1 oz/30 ml

I already posted about this on Instagram here. This didn’t do much for me in terms of either hydrating or brightening, and is also sticky. I’m tired of it so I’ve decided to finally throw it out. 

I purchased this from a Nature Republic store when it was on sale for around $12. This is available on RoseRoseShop for $8.45.

The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, 1 oz/30 ml

This is the second The Ordinary product I’ve tried (first being the Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5), and unfortunately this doesn’t seem to be working out for me. This is supposed to help with blemishes/congestion and balancing sebum activity. I cannot speak to the blemishes part as I don’t get much acne, but I find that this is a bit drying on my oily skin and hasn’t provided much visible benefits in terms of reducing scarring. I still absolutely love The Ordinary’s philosophy and amazing price points though, and I’ve heard that a lot of people like this, so I would recommend trying this out for yourself!

I purchased this from The Ordinary for a whopping $5.90.

Have you tried any of these products? Let me know your thoughts!

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Review: Glossier Megapost

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So it probably seems like a strange choice to write my first review on Glossier, when I started Glow Potion to talk about Asian skincare. But I have an addiction to Glossier and I’ve tried quite a few of their products so I wanted to get this out of the way first!

First off, Glossier’s marketing team has done a pretty amazing job with their branding. The “cool girl” aesthetic, the minimalist yet trendy packaging- Glossier is all about this sort of effortless, low-maintenance beauty and using just a few simple products to achieve it. All of these are things that attract me to Glossier.  Yet for the same reasons, I also dislike the whole approach to “cool girl” beauty. Girls who put a lot of effort into their makeup and skincare are pretty awesome too, you know?

There’s something about the cult-like devotion to the brand that puts me off as well (probably hypocritical, considering I’ve bought so many products from them). I’ve personally found it very difficult to come across unbiased or in-depth Glossier reviews. Suffice to say, Glossier targets a very specific demographic and they do it extremely well.

However, despite everything, there’s something about the brand that keeps me coming back. (I just counted and I currently have nine Glossier pink pouches. Oops.) I’ve found that I’ll keep buying new products, but I actually haven’t repurchased anything yet.

In any case, keep on reading below to see what my thoughts are on all of the Glossier products I’ve tried out!  I’ve also linked the products in case you’d like to take a look at their full ingredient lists on the Glossier website. 

Moisturizing Moon Mask, 3 oz, $22

This was the very first product I bought from Glossier, probably because something about the name just makes the product so appealing to me. The Moon Mask is supposed to be a calming, brightening, and “intensely hydrating” treatment.

I really liked the texture of this mask, which is a semi-opaque white, almost bouncy gel. It was fun to use and easy to apply on my face, but gave me mediocre results with regards to brightening and hydration. I definitely would not consider it an intense treatment, and my skin is on the oily side.

Rating: 3/5 – I liked this enough. Would consider repurchasing only because of the bouncy texture, which I really enjoyed.

 

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Milky Jelly Cleanser, 6 oz, $18

This is my favorite Glossier product that I’ve tried! I actually got two bottles of this despite only purchasing one due to a shipping error, and I am about to finish my second. (FYI, based on my personal experience, Glossier’s customer service is pretty great.) This is a gentle cleanser with a fantastic creamy gel texture. It leaves my skin feeling soft after rinsing and I really enjoy the rose scent. I don’t find the fragrance too strong personally, but then again I absolutely love roses, so it may be strong for others with sensitive skin.

Despite Glossier’s claims, I don’t find that this cleanser removes makeup very well. As such I like to use this in the mornings, or in the evenings as a second cleanse after removing my makeup.

Rating: 4/5 – I docked a point because this doesn’t remove makeup well, but I really like this otherwise. Would repurchase.

Balm Dotcom, 0.5 oz, $12

I got these in Coconut and Rose and seriously loved the scents of both of them. They are subtle but smell amazing. I also liked the texture, which was like a fancier version of Vaseline. The Rose Balm Dotcom has a very light pink tint, which can give your lips a nice rosy glow as long as they are not pigmented like mine. The Coconut Balm Dotcom has no color.

Unfortunately, the Balm Dotcom was not hydrating at all for me. I have very dry lips so I always wear some kind of lip treatment overnight, but this didn’t do much. I’ll be sticking to my boring but reliable Carmex/Vaseline. As a daytime lip balm I also found that the Balm Dotcom just kind of sat on top of my lips. I also tried it on other areas such as my cuticles, but it wasn’t great for that purpose either.

Rating: 2/5 – These didn’t do much for me. Would not repurchase.

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Boy Brow, 0.11 oz, $16

My brows aren’t perfect and honestly a little sparse, but I am pretty low maintenance (i.e., lazy) when it comes to them. I generally like to just use a tinted brow gel, so Boy Brow seemed right up my alley.

I got this in Brown, and it had a nice amount of pigment while being very natural. It also leaves your brows soft and flexible, but still has decent hold. However, I found that the brush picked up a little too much product for my taste. I also prefer a larger brush. I think Boy Brow works best for those who already have nice, full brows and just need a little bit of additional grooming.

Rating: 3/5 – I liked this enough. Would not repurchase due to the price point.

Stretch Concealer, 0.17 oz, $18

Luckily, I don’t usually have acne or a lot of blemishes/scarring I need to cover on my face (thank you birth control, you are a miracle worker), so I was okay with the fact that the Stretch Concealer isn’t very heavy duty and gives buildable, but medium coverage at best. That being said, it is much too emollient for me. According to Glossier, this gives “dewy, glowing coverage,” but I also find that it never fully sets and remains very tacky on my face unless I use a finishing powder, which defeats the point of its dewy finish.

Due to its lack of coverage, the Stretch Concealer is more suited for things like undereye circles, rather than acne. I also find that it will sadly accentuate any dry skin on my face.

Rating: 2/5 – I wasn’t too fond of this. Would not repurchase.

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Perfecting Skin Tint, 1 oz, $26

On days I wake up with great skin, I love using the Perfecting Skin Tint. It is a really nice product to use when my face isn’t dealing with any issues. I typically won’t wear powder on top as the soft finish gives a subtle brightening effect. However, be warned- this tint has practically no coverage. I also find that this applies best when my moisturizer has not yet fully dried, and if my face isn’t perfectly hydrated, this will not look good on dry spots and drags on the skin.

Surprisingly, the simple and almost childish packaging of the Perfecting Skin Tint works really well. It dispenses perfectly without any mess,  which is a relief because it is a very runny liquid. I typically use 5 to 7 drops.

Rating: 4/5 – I really like this, but only on “perfect” skin days. I have mixed feelings as to whether I would repurchase this.

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Priming Moisturizer, 1.7 oz, $25

This is not an amazing moisturizer, but its biggest strength in my opinion is that it creates a great base for makeup. This works well with the Perfecting Skin Tint and is an opaque white, thin lotion, similar to that of an emulsion.

Unfortunately, the Priming Moisturizer is not very hydrating, so you will most likely need an additional moisturizer in your routine unless you have very oily skin. It also doesn’t really help me with redness, as it is supposed to do. Additionally, like everyone else, I wish this had SPF.

Rating: 4/5 – I liked it a lot as a makeup base. On the fence as to whether I would repurchase this though.

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Haloscope, 0.19 oz, $22

I am obsessed with stick highlighters and have Haloscope in both Quartz and Topaz. Unfortunately I missed out on Moonstone, which was limited edition, but oh well… I really didn’t need three of these. According to Glossier, this is the “galaxy’s first dew effect highlighter.” Cute.

The Haloscope has a core of coconut oil (which could be problematic for those prone to acne) and both Quartz and Topaz give a beautiful glow, but for me personally it never fully sets on the face. I find that it stays a little tacky on my skin, which I dislike. It is not as tacky as the Stretch Concealer though, at least.

Rating: 4/5 – These were nice. Would not repurchase though.

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Priming Moisturizer Rich, 1.7 oz, $35

Finally, my most recent Glossier purchase is the (kind of) newly released Priming Moisturizer Rich. I had high hopes for this as I liked the original Priming Moisturizer enough as a base for makeup but wished it was more hydrating. The packaging also looked beautiful, even though I’m not too fond of jars. Unfortunately, the new Rich version did not live up to my expectations. Immediately with dismay, I noticed that it has a very strong lavender scent. (I read on ITG that it had a subtle lavender fragrance, but this was way beyond subtle.)

The texture is as Glossier claims- it is very creamy and luxurious. However I do find it can be a little bit greasy, even though it is not supposed to be. And oddly enough, despite how dense it is, I didn’t find it was very hydrating for me as a night cream. The Priming Moisturizer Rich still creates a good base for makeup just like the original, but it is a little too heavy for me to wear in the daytime given I have oily skin.

Lastly, a minor pet peeve: I personally don’t consider $35 cheap for a face cream, and it irks me that ITG is calling this “affordable.” I mean, I guess it is if you’re comparing it to a ridiculously priced $250 cream. I suppose I’ve just been spoiled by how affordable Asian skincare is…

Rating: 2/5 – I wasn’t too fond of this. Would not repurchase.


Whew, that was a lot of words. I tried to keep my reviews very short due to the number of products I covered here, but it still ended up being a monster of a post!

tl;dr- I love Glossier’s branding but have mixed feelings about their products. Among all of the things I’ve tried, there are only two or three products I would actually repurchase. However, I’ll probably continue to get sucked in by the marketing and packaging. (I was sooo close to buying the Supers…) If you want to try one thing from Glossier, I would recommend the Milky Jelly Cleanser!

Welcome! + My Skincare Routine

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Hi all, and welcome to Glow Potion!

I thought I would kick things off by starting with my current skincare routine. I’ve used most of the products below for some time, although not all of them are staples or favorites. I generally rotate through a few depending on what I feel like, so I definitely don’t use all of the products listed below at the same time. I do plan to review most of these in the future, but feel free to ask any questions you’d like! 🙂

Without further ado:


AM Routine

  • Cleanse:
    • Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser
  • Tone:
    • Neogen Real Flower Cleansing Water, Rose
    • Erborian Yuza Double Lotion
    • Muji Light Toning Water, High Moisture
  • Moisturize:
    • Etude House Moistfull Collagen Emulsion
    • CosRX Oil-Free Ultra-Moisturizing Lotion
    • Glossier Priming Moisturizer
    • Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich
  • Protect:
    • Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel
    • Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence

PM Routine

  • Cleanse:
    • Bioderma Hydrabio H2O
    • Banila Co. Clean It Zero
    • Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser
  • Tone:
    • Son & Park Beauty Water
    • Neogen Real Flower Cleansing Water, Rose
    • Muji Light Toning Water, High Moisture
  • Treat:
    • Pixi Glow Tonic
    • CosRX BHA Blackhead Power Liquid
    • Neogen Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling, Wine
    • The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
    • Scinic Honey All In One Ampoule
  • Moisturize:
    • CosRX Blackhead Power Cream
    • CosRX Hyaluronic Acid Intensive Cream
    • Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream