February Empties.. The Moisturizing Month

February Empties

Not only is February the shortest month of the year, but it's usually the coldest here as well. Because of that, the only products I managed to get through were ones that I thought would provide me with some heavy duty moisture.

Kiehl's Superbly Smoothing Argan Hair Pak: Winter plus heat styling have turned my hair into a hot, brittle mess this year. I went on a hunt for the perfect hair mask to combat whatever the heck is happening up there. Unfortunately, most of my hair 'miracle' workers from Memebox turned out to be duds, aside from the ones I went through last month. I was so desperate that I went to Kiehl's and paid the $35 for an 8oz. jar of this stuff. I blame all the positive reviewers at MakeupAlley. Aside from all of the raves on performance, the one downside everyone listed, and I will confirm, is that it stinks. It's not going to make your hair smell nice and pretty like a lot of other argan/coconut based oil treatments. To be honest, I used to wash my hair with apple cider vinegar and condition it with olive oil so, to me, anything beats coming out of the shower smelling like a salad.

enesti Apple & Honey Shea Butter Hand Cream: Memebox Special #53: My Honey Box had some real gems; however, this hand cream wasn't one of them. So what if it smelled spectacular and I wanted to eat my hands every time I put it on? It didn't really do anything else for me. After the smell wore off, it appeared as if the moisturizing effects did as well. To be honest, I considered tossing this hand cream a few times before I had finished it, but the scent kept sucking me back in. Perhaps Julep has spoiled me for all other hand care, because I probably would have loved this had I not tried my Maven products first. I mean, it didn't feel greasy, but it didn't automatically give my hands a healthy look or make them baby soft as soon as it absorbed either. Often Korean drugstore and low-end skincare outperform their much higher priced Western competitors, but in this case, the $5 value given by Memebox for the cream seems pretty accurate.

The Face Shop Lovely Me:Ex BeBe Lip Essence: As I've mentioned before in my November Empties post, this is my holy grail lip product. The only reason I haven't used more of them this winter is because I've been trying to use up the million or so other balms, treatments, glosses, and butters that came in some of my monthly subscriptions. So far, this one has them all beat. I can't get through more than half of something else before returning to my Bebe Lip Essence. If The Face Shop ever discontinued it, I'm convinced my lips would just shrivel up and die.

insobeau Super Yellow Intense Renew Essence: Now that I'm a bit more familiar with the Korean skincare regime, I can confidently say, this product is not an essence in the traditional sense. Most of the essences I've tried have been much thinner. The consistency of the insobeau product is more like a lotion or an emulsion. I'm not complaining. I've never had dry skin, but for some reason, my face decided this winter it would throw me a curve ball. I had to cut out a lot of products, like most of my toners and serums since they dried me out. If I didn't have this 'essence' on hand I would have had to go out and emergency buy even more Western skincare than I did. It still functioned well amid my Bioderma cleansers and toners, while providing sufficient moisture to the greasier parts of my face. While using it I was able to only spot treat my dry patches, so I wouldn't break out the areas that were retaining their moisture. I wish I had a backup because I'm really going to miss it. I can't find it anywhere online. I'm hoping someone is hoarding it and will put it up for trade soon so I can make it through the rest of the season!

Julep Hand and Cuticle Stick: I have a confession to make. I bite my nails. That's not the horrid part. You know that skin around your nails that usually gets dry and hard during the frigid winters because you refuse to wear gloves? I used to bite that too. Notice I said 'used to'. I consider Julep's Hand and Cuticle Stick my little saviour. Not only is it super moisturizing without being greasy, so the skin stays soft and supple, but in the event it does get a little chapped, the balm tastes NASTY. That's incentive not to bite right there. It also makes my hands look less shriveled and worked in after a long day of steering wheel gripping, snow shoveling, and driveway salting (all done without gloves). Thank you, Julep, for you peptide, shea butter, and vitamin infused wonder! Even after all the praise though, I would never pay the $22USD that Julep 'charges' for the product. I've always waited until they put one of their hand care kits on sale to get more bang for my buck. I usually pay about $20 for 5 products versus full price for 1. In desperate times I've also been known to check out every coupon site on the web (retailmenot.com is my fave!), since Julep always seems to have a few out at a time.

Disclaimer: My camera is still on the fritz, so I had to use stock images from manufacturer and retailer websites. Also, some of the links are affiliate links.

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