The Not Repurchasing List


I am on yet another mission to finish things and in doing so, I have identified several things I don’t plan on buying again. In this post, I am going to focus on why they didn’t quite work for me. In every single case, there are other products in the ranges of these brands that I love. So, this isn’t about hating on any brand, because most of these have rave reviews, but we all have different preferences and skin type.

Glossier Priming Moisturizer (1,7 oz, 25) I purchased this after trying and really liking Glossier’s Milky Jelly Cleanser. This is a light, fluffy lotion. It is hydrating and greaseless. All things I love. The problem? It eats up my makeup. It lasts half as long if I wear this underneath.

January Labs Restorative Tonic Mist (4 oz, $24) I purchased this because of Caroline Hirons. She makes me do things. This is loaded with really nice ingredients and is clean (aloe, rose calendula). Nice right? The problem: It is stingy. I think it’s the lime oil. I love citrus scents, but I am learning that it just doesn’t work in my skincare.

Andalou Naturals Lemon Creamy Cleanser (6 oz, $12.95) Somehow I forgot that I really didn’t like the Andalou Illuminating Toner. Why? Stingy. Citrus. As as cleanser it work–gets makeup right off with a wet washcloth. But I hate the way it feels, especially around the eyes.

Sunday Riley Tidal Enzyme Water Cream (1.7 oz, $65) I purchased this to use as a light moisturizer in the summer. It is ok. That’s pretty much all I can say about it. I didn’t notice anything special in terms of plumping, hydrating or brightening. There are just too many other things I reach for. I keep forgetting to use it.

Tata Harper Concentrated Brightening Serum (1 oz, $230) I have had this for awhile. It is the most expensive of the bunch–I purchased it on sale and with a gift card to cover about half the cost and it was still pricey. That alone will keep me from repurchasing. However: this stuff works. Of all of the products in this post this one did its thing after just one application. I saw brighter skin immediately. It has a light, lotiony texture that I like a lot. It also has a strong scent like many TH products. The problem? If I use it on consecutive days, I break out. I couldn’t tell you exactly why. There are tons of ingredients in it.

Ode to Oatmeal: First Aid Beauty Serum and Tatcha Triple Recovery Soothing Cream

oatmeal First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum (1 oz, $36) satisfied a craving. What? You don’t believe in skincare cravings? They are a thing. I wanted something hydrating, light and–most importantly–calming. You see, I have been doing thorough cleansing (hello, washcloth) to remove sunscreen, makeup, and sweat. Between that and a little masking here and there, my skin became reddened and needed a little boost. This little FAB serum turned up when I put words hyaluronic acid, oatmeal and serum in a google search. I bought it. I love it. Why? Because it is just right. I have used Belief’s Aqua Bomb and tried their moisturizing bomb. I have used Hylamide and Hydralauron. I like the FAB serum better. All are hydrating, but this one is effective while being lighter and soothing. This is the perfect layer of hydration and calm that I have applying day (after Drunk Elephant C-Firma and before sunscreen) and night (after spraying myself silly with toner and before facial oils and treatments). Oh and after masks–it’s great then too. This serum boasts the HA and oatmeal I was looking for, plus aloe, peptides, and more. See end of post for full list of ingredients.

Speaking of oatmeal, I am on my second travel-size jar of Tatcha Soothing Triple Recovery Cream. This moisturizer contains three percent colloidal oatmeal–more than any other product of its type.  It has also has a seal of acceptance from the National Eczema Association. The triple soothing comes from oatmeal, indigo extract (hence the blue hue) and Sophora Japonica extract–all three comfort the skin. I tried this in travel size after reading Beauty Idealist’s very positive review. The full size costs $135, so having the $30 travel option is a great way to test this out. I went through that pot and liked the effect, but found the cream a bit thick and hard to spread. I didn’t repurchase figuring it could wait until winter when I’d need a heavier cream. Until this recent bout of redness. I repurchased another –again in travel size. Since it’s summer and I am cooling and spritzing myself between layers of skincare, I have a little dampness going when I apply. And guess what? It spreads like a dream. I know: duh! This cream is excellent and gorgeous. I thought I would use it just when I need it but find myself using it most nights (unlike another blue soothing product I own—a balm that is so heavily scented with essential oils that I can’t bring myself to use it much). It is excellent after a mask and on top of retinol products as a comforting last layer.

FAB Serum: Aqua (Water, Eau), Glycerin, Soluble Collagen, Methyl Gluceth-20, Colloidal Oatmeal, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-5, Chrysanthemum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Caprylyl Glycol, Hydroxyethyl cellulose, Allantoin, Panthenol, Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium PCA, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Maltodextrin, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Nitrate, Disodium Phosphate, Polysorbate 60, Sodium Phosphate, EDTA, Glyoxal

TATCHA Cream: Water, Squalane (Olive origin), Glycerin, Propanediol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Diisostearyl Malate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Wax, Xylitol, Behenyl Alcohol, Polygonum Tinctorium (Japanese Indigo) Leaf/stem Extract, Indigofera Tinctoria Leaf Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat Kernel) Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Sophora Japonica Flower Extract, Prunus Lannesiana Flower Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Germ Oil, Inositol (Rice Extract), Sericin (Silk Extract), Tetrasodium Tetracarboxymethyl Naringeninchalcone, Chondrus Crispus (Red Algae) Extract, Amorphophallus Konjac Root Powder, Sodium Hyaluronate, Dextrin, Sorbitan Tristearate, Trihydroxystearin, Dimethicone, Dimethicone/vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Beheneth­‐20, Bis-­Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-­2, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Dilauramidoglutamide Lysine, Disodium Edta, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Sodium Acrylate/ acryloyldimethyltaurate/ dimethylacrylamide Crosspolymer, Titanium Dioxide, Calcium Carbonate, Tin Oxide, Phenoxyethanol, Mica.

Three Cleansers Reviewed


I recently finished 3 cleansers and it felt so GREAT. Is that weird? Skincare hoarders–you know what I mean.  The “I’ve gotta finish these before I get anything new” feeling transitions that miraculous moment when the pump sputters and you know it is time to shop! I even like the feeling of dropping empties into the recycling bin. All of it is so damn satisfying. I am not repurchasing any of the cleaners that I am writing about today–at least not at the moment–so if you have suggestions for new things to try, let me know! Here’s what I thought about each:

First Aid Beauty Milk Oil Conditioning Cleanser is a good buy at $26 for 5 ounces. It has a light, lotion consistency and not much of a scent. Coupled with a washcloth for removal, it really does get make up off–including mascara. It worked well as a first cleanse in the evening. It also lasted even though I pumped a ridiculous number of times (like 15) with each application. I want to say it’s mild–it really doesn’t irritate. However, something in it feels slightly cooling on my eye area–like in an alcohol or menthol way. Like I said, it doesn’t irritate, but I don’t like the way it feels around my eyes. Of the 3 it was the least hydrating.  Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Polyglyceryl-6 Distearate, Jojoba Esters, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Chrysanthemum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, Cetyl Alcohol, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax, Tetrasodium EDTA, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Phenoxyethanol, EDTA

MV Organics Gentle Cream Cleanser was a splurge at $58 for 2.8 ounces. (Thank goodness for sweethearts and giftcards.) This stuff is lovely and gentle. This has simple organic ingredients and a faint mandarin scent. I will say it took me a bit of time to come around to liking it because it is a dryer, thicker cream. It doesn’t spread easily. Once I started applying, then wetting my hands to work it in, it started making sense. This is a “hot cloth” cleanser and I found that putting the hot, wet washcloth over it and removing it took off makeup and resulted in my skin looking really good/refined and feeling soft after cleansing. I mostly used this as a first cleanse. I know some people will think it’s nuts to use something so luxe for the gunky makeup obliterating first cleanse as opposed to a second messaging cleanse, but I like light gels for the second cleanse. (Hello, Yuli Halcyon!) I might splurge on this again someday, but for now I want to try new things and maybe spend less money removing makeup.  Ingredients: Water Camellia (Camellia Oleifera) Oil* Cetearyl Glucoside Vegetable Glycerin* Olive (Olea Europaea) Fruit Oil* Coconut (Cocos Nucifera) Oil* Glyceryl Stearate Vitamin E non GM (Tocopherol) Xanthan Gum Honeysuckle (Lonicera Caprifolium & Lonicera Japonica) Extract With essential oils of: Rose, Chamomile and Mandarin * Potassium Sorbate

Blissoma Mild Rice Cleanser
 was a Kimberly Loc made me do it. I keep this one in the shower for morning cleansing. (I don’t recommend washing your face in the shower if you take hot showers–I take cool to luke warm showers depending on the weather.)  This is moisturizing and has some crushed rice in it for exfoliating, but the grains to cleanser ratio is not high so it is really, really gentle. In fact, I wouldn’t even call it an exfoliating experience, so you can absolutely use it daily. This one is $39 for 4 ounces and I think it lasts quite a while as a morning cleanse. I only wish this one rinsed a little cleaner (see below for the ingredients, it does contain oils). I didn’t remove it with a cloth the way I did the others because it seemed like it might be harsh to take something slightly grainy off with a cloth. This is a really nice cleanser and it has really lovely ingredients and a very mild scent.  Ingredients: Infusion of Althea officinalis* (marshmallow), Stellaria media* (chickweed), Plantago major* (plantain), Rosa damascena*, Arthemis nobilis* (chamomile), Glycerin*, Helianthus annuus (sunflower) Oil*, Oryza sativa* (brown rice), Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Cocos nucifera (coconut) Oil*, Prunus armeniaca (apricot) kernal Oil*, Glyceryl Stearate, Salix alba* (willowbark) extract, Cannabis sativa (hemp) Oil*, Cetearyl Alcohol, Gluconolactone, Echinacea purpurea Extract*, Populus tremuloides (aspen) bark extract, Essential Oils of Lavandula angustifolia, Litsea Cubeba, Cymbopogon martini (palmarosa), Canarium luzonicum (elemi), Boswellia carterii (frankincense), Vetiveria zizandoides (vetiver), Xanthan Gum, Rosemary Oleoresin Extract, Grain Alcohol*+
essential oils in this product contain: linalool**, geraniol**, limonene**, citral**