July Empties

Do you ever have those months where you feel like you've barely used up any products, then suddenly have loads of empties at once? That's what it's been like for me this month. After a relatively quiet June, in July it's like everything decided to run out at the same time (though if I'm being honest I probably won't need to restock beyond essentials until September at least). I will admit I did cheat a bit and used up a few of my samples from various beauty boxes and magazines so that helped push up the total, but overall I think I've done quite well this month!

Revlon Nearly Naked Foundation in Shell
I wrote a full review of this product a few weeks ago, but to sum it up it's one of my favourite high street foundations. It gives light to medium coverage, has good staying power and blends in really nicely. However, it's also very much a good skin day foundation so maybe not the best if you're prone to breakouts. This shade wasn't quite the right colour for me either so, whilst I would buy it again, next time I'll go for Ivory or Vanilla.

Naked Care Sensitive Shampoo
Again I've posted about this previously but wasn't keen on it as my hair never felt properly clean no matter how much of it I used, so it was relegated to a brush cleaner. Bizarrely I found it actually worked a lot better at cleaning my brushes than it did my hair - it was really gentle on the fibres but also got rid of product build-up without too much scrubbing. I'm not sure I'd buy it again though as it's not the cheapest and compared to baby shampoo (which is what I normally clean my brushes with) it doesn't seem to make that much difference.

The Body Shop Candied Ginger Shower Gel
This is an example of how rubbish I am at using up shower gel. It's the 2011 (yes, really) version of the ginger shower gel that the Body Shop brings out every Christmas and the scent is lovely and warming, if slightly unseasonable in the warm weather we've been having. It also lathers up really nicely and isn't too drying on my skin, though I do need to use a body lotion afterwards as I'm prone to dry patches. If I didn't already have enough shower gel to wash an army this would definitely be on my repurchase list when the latest version comes out.

Lush New Shampoo Bar (not pictured)
I haven't got a photo of this as it essentially disintegrated on me (though you can see a picture on my hair routine post), but I really like this product. It has a nice invigorating smell, lathers up well and feels like it gets your hair properly clean. It's packed with ingredients to stimulate hair growth so perfect for me as I'm growing my hair for the wedding, and works really well - I went to see my hairdresser after using this for two months and she was amazed how much my hair had grown! Definitely going to repurchase this once I finally run out of shampoo.

And now for the samples...

Aromatherapy Associates Morning Revive Bath Oil sample
This was a sample in my May Birchbox and I really liked it. It had a lovely herbal scent which definitely woke me up on the morning I used it, and the oil was nicely moisturising but not overly greasy. It was a lovely sample to try, but a little bit out of my price range so probably not something I'll buy the full size of.

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation sample in Deauville
I got a sample of this in John Lewis all the way back in April and I absolutely love it. It's got enough coverage to disguise most blemishes but still allows my freckles to come through, isn't too heavy and is a great colour match for me. Plus the sample has lasted ages - I've used this most days since I got it and it is only just starting to run out, so even though it's quite pricey to buy a full bottle I'll definitely be picking one up soon!

Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre sample
This was in my June Birchbox and probably the thing I was most excited to get, as Sali Hughes (Guardian beauty editor and one of my beauty oracles) raves about it. It's essentially a multi-functional moisturiser, primer and cleanser, and whilst it wasn't great at the latter it works an absolute treat for the first two. I'm planning to pick some of this up but it probably won't be for a while as it doesn't have SPF in it and I'm always a bit cautious about SPF-free moisturiser, especially in the summer, plus I have a load of other moisturiser samples that need using up first.

Beauty Protector Protect & Shampoo sample
I got this in my May Birchbox and really, really liked it - it smells lovely, makes my hair feel really clean and soft, and has utterly gorgeous packaging. The only thing that's putting me off repurchasing is the fact it's so expensive at £14 a bottle, but if I had the cash then I'd definitely be treating myself to a full size! Maybe one to hang on to for when I have enough Birchbox points...

L'Oreal Skin Perfection Correcting Day Moisturiser sample
I must admit I haven't been wowed by this moisturiser. It has a nice fruity fragrance but I don't think it's done an enormous amount in terms of its claims to reduce pores and even skintone, so I'm not sure I'd invest in a pot in the future. That said, it's very much in the category of 'a little goes a long way' and hasn't broken me out, which are always bonuses with skincare products in my view.

So not bad going for empties in July I think! I'm still trying to use up as many of my samples as possible in August to get some quick wins, and then once the autumn starts will get on with the serious business of using up what I've got left before going to New York.

What products have you used up this month?

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