Beauty Empties | 01


Do you follow Eva Chen, recently-resigned head of Lucky Magazine, on Instagram? Besides her signature #evachenpose showcasing her shoes and bag du jour, her series of #beautifulempties is one of my favorite ‘grams to see pop up in my feed.

Each month or so, Eva shares mini reviews of the skincare and makeup products she used to the last drop. Plenty of YouTubers do this, too; but instead of a 15 minute video, Eva’s version only takes a few minutes to digest.

I love these kinds of ‘real life’ reviews when I shop for beauty products, so I’m jumping on board!

Philosophy The Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash ($28 at Sephora) – My husband and I both use this gentle exfoliating scrub in the shower almost every morning; a little goes a long way and the bottle lasted several months between the two of us.  With daily use, it helped keep pesky dry patches at bay, made my skin smooth for easier makeup application, and never made my skin feel tight or dry like other exfoliators. When we ran out, I repurchased.

Philosophy When Hope is Not Enough Facial Firming Serum ($45 at SephoraI bought this in a value kit at Ulta back in January. While it seemed to keep my face smooth and healthy, and my occasional breakouts seemed to heal a little quicker, I did some research and opted for a retinol serum instead of repurchasing (more on that later).

Kari Gran Cleansing Oil ($30 at karigran.com) – Using this natural oil cleanser at the end of a long day feels like a little spa retreat at my bathroom sink. It smells so good, dissolves every speck of makeup, and leaves my cleansed skin feeling hydrated and balanced. I will restock this as soon as I use up some other cleansers in my medicine cabinet; it’s one of my all-time favorite products.

BareMinerals Complexion Rescue ($29 at Nordstrom) – I used this SPF 30 hydrating tinted moisturizing gel every day last winter. It’s quick and easy to apply, evens out my skin tone, and gives a dewy healthy glow that I really like. I used my Ulta points to repurchase, but found that doesn’t hold up very well to spring/summer heat and humidity (lots of shine and slip) so I’ll probably save it for later.

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water ($6.99 at Target) – Micellar cleansing waters are a staple in French pharmacies, and they’re gaining traction stateside. I decided to see what all the fuss was about with Simple’s new inexpensive drugstore version. I like it! It removes makeup with a quick swipe of a cotton pad, and no rinsing is required. I found it takes quite a bit of product to get the job done — up to three soaked cotton pads to remove every last bit of dirt and makeup — and I killed my first bottle in about 2-3 weeks. However, it’s been great to have on hand when I’m too tired to wash my face at night (which is most nights, let’s be honest) and it keeps my skin really balanced, so I repurchased.

About Keira Lennox

I’m a small town girl from the sunshine state with an affinity for bookstores, beauty counters and unfussy style.

I spend my days running my flower shop, and my nights blogging about what I love and what I wear.

(Or watching Netflix and drinking wine.)

48 thoughts on “Beauty Empties | 01

    1. She did!! Or they parted ways; not sure what the official terms of her leaving were. But I’m sure she’s on to bigger, better things (even though it’s sad for Lucky). Hopefully she’ll keep serving up goodness on Instagram!

    1. It’s water with ‘micelles’ suspended in it, which from what I’ve read cling to oil and makeup on your skin so you can wipe it all away. It’s excellent at removing makeup, but it’s also good for cleansing your face in the morning. I like that it doesn’t strip my skin or make it dry. Really good if you have sensitive skin!

  1. I love reading empties posts and I would like to do one someday, but I’m not good with saving my trash. lol. Really enjoyed this post! I’m happy to still hear good things about the Simple cleansing water! Definitely want to try that out and see how it compares with Bioderma.

    1. LOL!! It took effort NOT to throw these things out. I stashed them in a drawer and kept telling myself, ‘you can’t pitch these until you snap a picture.’ Although honestly, you probably don’t need photo evidence for a good empties post. ;)

      I wanted to try the Bioderma. I’ve read so many good things about it. I was actually doing the opposite — trying the Simple before I bought the Bioderma. :)

  2. I tried the Bare Minerals gel at your recommendation, and I have to say I’m still loving it! It’s one of the only foundations I can put on without lotion under, so it’s a true multi-tasker for me. (I’ve also tried Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer and find it SO THICK and ugh – not what I want in a light summer foundation.)

    I was also using the Kari Gran for awhile and loved it, but it was absolutely breaking my bank account. I went through a bottle every month or so. Now I’m using Ponds cold cream – because I’ve turned into my grandmother. #noshame

    1. You know, I never understood the hype of the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer! I tried it, and found it so thick and hard to blend, too!! I made myself finish the tube because I spent so much on it, but I never bought it again.

      And funny you mention Ponds. I just found some under my bathroom sink and started using it after my KG ran out!! My grandmother always swore by that stuff.

      1. LM tinted moisturizer was ALL the rage when I was in college. I bought it on the recommendation of a sorority sister and never trusted her makeup judgment again.

        I’ve always struggled with acne, even now that I’m in my late 20s, but since I started using Ponds, my face has cleared up and been 99% perfect. It’s my miracle product!

    1. I have super sensitive skin, and I’ve never had a problem with anything from BareMinerals, from their mineral powder makeups to the Complexion Rescue.It’s just a bit dewy if you live in a high-humidity climate, but I LOVED it before the summer weather hit.

  3. I was eyeing the microdelivery exfoliating wash from Philosophy today at Ulta while I was searching for something for my boyfriend to use! (He uses a bar of soap right now 😷) next time I’ll be sure to pick this up!

    1. Isn’t Kari Gran the best?! I also love the serum; it smells like heaven.

      If you don’t mind powder, I think a little dusting would go a long way in making the Complexion Rescue work better for summer.

    1. Yes!! I feel like I’ve tried every makeup remover wipe out there, and I’m always underwhelmed. They’re either too dry, or have too much perfume. The micellar water is an awesome alternative (and at $7 a bottle, I don’t mind restocking!).

  4. I’ve heard good things about Complexion Rescue. Good to know it’s not the best for summer though. I’ve been wearing mineral make up since it got hot because liquid make up feels too heavy.

    1. Mineral makeup is a life saver in the summer. If you don’t mind powder, the Complexion Rescue would probably hold up better (I hate wearing powder, for some reason).

  5. Love these types of reviews! Would you please let me know where your sunglasses are from in the JCrew pants post (from last week)? Thanks!

  6. I have been eyeing that cleansing water!! Good blog pic as well.. I never thought about taking my products outside in the grass..I may give that a try :)

    1. Florida heat comes with a heavy dose of humidity, which is the main culprit of this not working super well for me in the summer. I also hate wearing powder, but I’m sure it would go a long way in making the Complexion Rescue hold up better in the heat.

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