In the latest installation of my Minimalizm series, I uncover six products that I’ve loved enough to use to the last drop. We so often buy full-sized versions of the new ‘holy grail’ product, only to sample it for a month then shove it deep inside our makeup drawers to make way for the new ‘it’ bottle/palette/cream of the next season. Keep scrolling to find out why empties are a great sign that life is getting cheaper, simpler, and hopefully better looking?
If you’re like me, you take YouTube gurus and sponsored makeup blogs with a biiig pink Himalayan grain of salt. Maybe it’s our skepticism of paid content, a scientific mind, or trust issues from childhood; in any case, we’re see-it-to-believe-it kinda girls* and already-flawless gurus slinging expensive products online doesn’t cut it for us.
*When I refer to you, my heaven-sent blog reader, as a “girl,” I don’t mean it in the conventional definition, so you don’t have to get your briefs in a bunch. When I say “girl,” I mean an intelligent, strong, free, beautiful, dry, compassionate, quick-as-a-whip, creative lover/warrior. No need to be humble. You’re totally a girl.
Things I’m throwing away (because I love them and used them up!):
- Kristin Ess Cleansing Conditioner: The first 2-in-1 with a real commitment to conditioning. This one-step product is applied to your roots for cleansing, then runs through ends upon rinsing for just enough exposure to detangle, but not over-dry.
- Olay Age Defying Body Wash: I got the sudden urge one day to compare all of the labels of body washes at Target. I found that Olay’s line for older ladies has the highest concentration of emollients in its formula to soften skin and that I have an absurd amount of free time.
- Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence: This SPF 50 essence is an Asian cult-classic and the only product that I would wait four weeks to receive from eBay. My girlfriends and I all use this purely for the sun protection–we still apply a regular moisturizer and makeup on top. This is possible because the essence is highly solvent due to a safe amount of alcohol in the formula. Note that this is a chemical sunscreen and *should* be reapplied every two hours. I am personally holed up inside of a building after my first two hours of the day, so that is–unfortunately–not a problem for me.
- Simple Micellar Cleansing Water: We can debate high-end creams and cosmetics, but I will lose my shit if I find out you spend actual Hamiltons on toner. This is great for makeup bits, clearing sebum, and reducing redness.
- Ama Sea Beauty Sealution Serum: This is a tightening serum (post-toner, pre-moisturizer) with more than 60% actual, natural algae that hosts great antioxidant power. The small-necked bottle (that keeps the product from oxidizing) and high concentration garner my endorsement and if you are to spend on the warranted, but also optional, algae craze, you’re much better off going with a family farm company like Ama Sea Beauty rather than La Mer. Use code SEABEAUTY for 50% off!
- Anastasia Brow Wiz: For days when I know my photo is getting taken or I’m reminded to constantly “date” my boyfriend, I fill in my brows with the Medium Brown pencil. Taupe also works when I’m feelin’ a lighter aesthetic. I recommend these two colors in particular because they are cool-toned and regardless of your hair color, I’d recommend cool over warm tones (unless you like your brows to shine red in the sunlight). This product is actually a cult-classic, but yeah, yeah, it deserves it. Thin and dry for shaping, yet totes down to be the face color pencil you need for the rest.
It’s personally intriguing to see what really gets used and to find that so many products are drugstore brands. You bet I have drawers full of beautifully-packaged palettes and expensive creams, but this is a practical and genuine look at what works. I hope everyone can take pride in emptying their products and assessing the real and not marketed or perceived effectiveness before taking home new ones.
My skin is brought to you by Target and it’s completely fine.
Minimalizm isn’t just about consuming less, but appreciating more.
Look into your drawers and commit to finishing products before they go bad. Use drugstore brands and really ask yourself if you can see or feel the difference before spending more money and time researching a fancy alternative. Fill your social media feed with examples of simple and effortless beauty. Lean in to a realer aesthetic and I think you’ll find that your best hair, skin, and face don’t require too much.
The reality is that we already have everything we need.
Filled with joy,