Sometimes, I buy a product on a whim without expecting much. Or, I get sent a product & try it without too much excitement. Most times, those products end up being “okay!” for me. I won’t complain about them, but I don’t rave about them, either. Here are some products I’ve bought/been sent lately that absolutely shook my expectations & made me want more, more, & more – even before I’m halfway done with them!
The 100% cruelty-free, pure, & vegan skin care brand OSEA (based in Malibu) sent me a few of their travel size products, including this toning mist. I loved their message right off the bat (they’re also a family-owned business!) but as always, tried to be as objective as possible. Right when I opened the box to see this product, however, I fell in love with the color – this glowing, coral-red color was extremely eye-catching & strangely soothing. This toning mist is meant for dry/sensitive skin (that’s me!) & claims to deliver instant hydration & a “radiant glow to dull, thirsty skin.” It contains organic algae & pomegranate, among other things, all of which claim to lock in moisture & reduce signs of anti-aging.
I first tried it as a toner. It was nice, but I didn’t like it as much as my Mario Badescu Facial Spray. I had an idea a few days later: on a particularly muggy, hot, sticky day, I misted this on my face after doing my morning skin care. Instant results: I looked glowy, but the extra boost of moisture also, in some magical way, managed to keep me from looking sticky & sweaty. I kept misting it on throughout the day. Amazing.
All in all, the color, the really nice spritzer that evenly disperses the mist, & the cooling, soothing effects of this spray make it a winner! I’ve tried sticking it in the fridge a few days ago on an extra hot day. Even better. This is a summer win for me! Thank you, OSEA 🌊🍉
I’m normally super wary of foaming products – in my own experience, they strip my dry skin of any moisture I might have, making my skin feel tight & uncomfortable. After having great results with CLĒ Cosmetics’ Oxygen Foam Cleanser, however, I decided to give this TCFS mask a go. TCFS is also a K-Beauty company, & since I’d had such a good experience with the Oxygen Foam Cleanser, I decided to be brave, & try this mask.
It comes in an aerosol can, which is pretty cool! It dispenses almost exactly like whipped cream. Another bonus: only $20 for about 3.4 ounces, which might not sound like a lot of product, but as you’ll see below, the amount I put on my hand was enough for my entire face – & that took about half a second to come out of the can.
TCFS calls this “a whipped foam facial mask made from egg yolk & egg white extracts that creates a smooth & radiant complexion in as little as 5 minutes.” I was pretty taken aback by the 5 minute claim, but was encouraged to see positive reviews, & TFCS’s promise that this would leave my skin silky soft & smooth. I decided to give it a go on a day when my face felt particularly dry & irritated. I know – I took a risk with this one…but it was worth it.
I left it on for about 10 minutes, rather than 5, & after rinsing off, was pleasantly surprised to see a brighter complexion, & felt a lot more moisturized immediately afterwards.
It’s also a super fun mask, I have to say. Foam is fun! I wish more foaming products were good for my skin, because I would be using them like no tomorrow. Unfortunately, most are too drying for me – but this one was a pleasant, fun surprise.
Sephora Birthday Gift: Caudalíe (!!!)
As most of you probably know, Sephora Beauty Insiders (doesn’t cost anything to sign up! Just an email address or phone number) recieve a mini set with any purchase during the month of their birthday. The gift sets change from year to year, & there’s usually two options: a mini makeup set, & a mini skin care set. I have plenty of makeup & don’t really wish to collect more at the moment, so I decided to go with skin care – especially when I saw that this year’s skin care set was by Caudalíe!
I’ve raved about their beauty elixir (which smells like champagne or white wine & is super cooling & soothing) in a few previous posts, but hadn’t tried anything else by them. I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to give it a go. The set included a mini of their Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet (described as a gel-cream meant to instantly moisturize & calm dehydrated, irritated skin), & a mini of their Vinoperfect Radiance Serum (described as a highly concentrated, oil-free serum that improves the appearance of dark spots, promotes even skin tone, & boosts radiance). Together, the set claims to instantly refresh, moisturize, & brighten skin.
Neither of these products are cheap – in fact, the Vinoperfect Serum is $80 before taxes – so I took this as an opportunity to try out more Caudalíe products without breaking the bank.
These are both minis, & don’t pretend to be anything else – both products are 0.33 fluid ounces – but if nothing else, they’re a good opportunity to try out an expensive brand, & also good for travel (collect free minis as much as possible if you travel a lot!).
I expected the products to have a powerful scent, given that the beauty elixer does, but neither of them have much of a scent. I wouldn’t call them fragrance-free, but they just have a slight, fresh scent to them. Both products sink instantly into the skin! I really, really like the Vinoperfect Radiance Serum (& hate myself for liking it so much since it’s so expensive) & I also really, really like the Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet (I hate myself less for liking this one, since it’s $40 instead of a whopping $80). The sorbet sinks into my skin really well, leaves it super moisturized, but not at all sticky. I’d call it a really good daytime moisturizer. It could almost be a primer for dry skinned people, since it leaves your skin moisturized but has just a tiny bit of “tack” (I don’t mean this in a bad way at all) to it.
Caudalíe, I love you, I hate you. I see myself buying at least one of these in the future. They really are…so good….& let’s not forget about their whimsical yet elegant packaging.
I purchased this body lotion on the same day that I got my Caudalíe minis. I’d been looking for a body cream for some time, but was leaning more towards a body butter, since my skin all over my body is pretty dry. I was considering the Brazilian Bum Bum Cream, which everyone & their mother raves about, but the $45 price tag really had me questioning it. I didn’t love the smell all that much, & the texture was okay…but it didn’t have me sold.
I wandered over to the Fresh products, & saw this body lotion almost immediately. I was shocked by the price – $23 for 10 fluid ounces is super cheap for a Fresh product – so I tried some out on my hand. I first tried the Sugar Lemon scent, but slightly recoiled. The texture was nice – really nice – but I find citrus scents a bit too powerful for body lotions or creams, especially if I’m planning on wearing a fragrance. I saw the Lychee scent, saw that it was based off their best-selling Sugar Lychee fragrance, & gave that one a sniff. Much better. It had a much more subtle scent, was a bit sweeter – yet not sickly – & still had a slight whiff of citrus to it, which I actually really liked. I tried it on my hand, & quickly saw that my skin appeared firmer, more radiant, & felt much more moisturized. If it worked this well on the tougher skin of my hand, I thought, it would be amazing for my body. I went with it!
Fresh describes the lotion as leaving the skin “feeling dewy and soft, thanks to the therapeutic qualities of real brown sugar. The light, supple texture of this superb body moisturizer makes it easy to use any time of the day, in any climate.” It’s described as “a sparkling with delicate grapefruit, lemon, lime, juicy lychee, & mango.” I love the slight citrus-y scent of this lotion, which slightly cuts the sweetness of the lychee & mango – basically, it’s a perfect balance between sweet & citrus. Plus: the bottle’s classically beautiful, simple packaging (that Fresh is famous for) looks beautiful on my windowsill, & the generous amount of product will definitely last me all through the summer, possibly even longer. Lightweight, not greasy, but super moisturizing & dewy. So much bang for your buck!
A relatively new brand to Sephora! Biossance is a skin care brand that mainly utilizes squalane oil (a natural 30-carbon organic compound) for skin, body, & hair products. I was sent their 100% Squalane oil, a fragrance-free product that claims to be multi-purpose, hydrating from head to toe, & locks in moisture. Biossance also says it’s a solution for dullness, dryness, & rough/uneven texture. As much as I love multi-use products, I was a bit hesitant on this one. Since I have sensitive skin, I’m always a bit scared to put multi-use products on my face (if they’re powerful enough for the rest of my body, I’m a bit frightened that they’ll react badly on my face). So, I decided to give the Squalane oil a go on my hair first. I’m a big fan of using oil on my hair (I’m super low-maintenaince with my hair: I let it air dry, & usually smooth some argan oil in it when it’s damp), so I decided to replace my usual argan oil with this one for a few days to see results.
The morning after applying the oil on my damp hair, I woke up, looked in the mirror, & saw bouncier, shinier, healthier-looking hair. I already have super-thick, pretty healthy, virgin hair (I’ve bleached in the past, but shaved it off…another story…) but this was on another level. I was truly blown away! I raved about it on Instagram, & tried it on my body. Again – amazing body moisturizer, especially right after showering. I have yet to use it on my face (since I already have so many good oils for my face, & I LOVE! this for my hair especially!) but I will give it a try soon. I haven’t been this blown away by a hair product in…probably forever, since I spend so little time on my hair. But for those who don’t like to do much with their hair: this is probably the thing for you! Your hair will look & feel better. I promise. Biossance, I love you with all my heart!
So…those are the products I’ve tried the past few weeks without the highest of expectations…& ended up being absolutely, 100% wrong. OSEA, Too Cool For School, Caudalíe, Fresh, Biossance…I love you! Thank you for switching up my skin & hair routine(s) in the best way possible.