August 1, 2021

Empties #37 – Mateja’s Beauty Blog


One of my favourite concealers. It has a medium-high coverage, it looks good both under the eyes and on spots. I’ve used it instead of foundation too and it looks really good (better than their proper foundations I’ve tried). Since I’m pale the shade fits me well, but they only have two and both are light. 

Repurchase: Done.


I’ve gone through several tubes of this and I still like it, but I’ve since tried their mousse which is for dry skin and I feel it suits me better. This a nice medium thick gel that doesn’t leave my skin feeling dry immediately after washing, though in about 5 minutes I have to apply something moisturising. Same goes for mousse, since my skin is normal- dry.

Repurchase: I’ll switch to the mousse, but maybe I’ll buy this sometime again. 

A gentle, fluffy mousse I use as a second cleanser. 

Repurchase: Yes.

A product I use every day in my night routine. I’ve said it many times that it helped improve the texture of my skin and now I use it to maintain that condition. It’s a light serum product that absorbs quickly and feels hydrating enough that I don’t need to use extra moisturisers quickly afterwards. It contains 95% galactomyces ferment filtrate and the rest is niacinamide, panthenol, glycerine, hyaluronic acid, allantoin, adenosine and a couple other ingredients, but no fragrance.

Repurchase: Done.

This not my favourite cleansing oil because it’s thin and I need to use a lot of it, plus it’s not the best for removing eye makeup. However, it’s still the only oil I can get in shops around here that’s still reasonably priced and it doesn’t break me out. Sadly for me Balea and Nivea’s ones are out, so I’m stuck with this. 

Repurchase: Out of necessity, but I prefer Oriflame’s and Hada Labo, both are available to me online. 

My favourite cleansing oil, but I have to order it from Japan. It has a rich formula that emulsifies into a lovely thick emulsion, it doesn’t make my vision foggy, nor irritate my eyes and it doesn’t have much of a scent. It washes off completely and it’s stronger than Biobaza, as it removes all makeup even waterproof mascara and eyeliner, but if the mascara coat is thick, it struggles to get it off and I need an extra cleansing if I don’t want to use a separate remover. I need only one pump for my entire face, which is a lot less than Biobaza. 

Repurchase: Yes, I need to order a refill.

One of my favourite skin care products and just like COSRX Galactomyces Essence I use this every day. It’s a light toner-like product that’s feels hydrating and is great for layering. It contains ceramides, Job’s Tears extract, 3 types of hyaluronic acid, collagen and amino acids. Bottle has a very generous 500 ml which lasts a long time. It’s fragrance free.

Repurchase: Yes, I finally managed to order it, since shipping costs aren’t insanely expensive anymore. Hopefully it arrives with no problems. 

One of my favourite skin care products from local drugstores and by now just in general. It’s a light serum with tons of pink shimmer and this gives a very natural, subtle radiance to the skin. It has hyaluronic acid and a form of vitamin C. My skin is in great condition when I use this. It’s a part of my morning routine and I apply it every day. 

Repurchase: Done. 

A serum with 1.5% hyaluronic acid that I thought was just average. It has that obnoxious texture I’ve seen at Hoffer’s hyaluronic serum where it’s thick and leaves a film on the skin, but it’s cheap and is sold in drugstores. If you’re not on a budget, Hada Labo’s is significantly nicer on the skin, also both Cezanne and COSRX Essence have plenty of HA.  

Repurchase: No. 

I love this, but I got the last two in my local DM because they removed this from the shelves (this is still on DM’s website). It’s a medium thick cream that I use all over the face, not just on pigment marks (which I don’t have anyway) and surprisingly one lasted me quite a while, despite the tube being so small. It works really well with my skin, it keeps it looking heathy, clear and it has a glow. This has niacinamide and vitamin C.  

Repurchase: Like I said I got both I could find in my local DM. They should last me a while until I find something similar. To be fair CV’s Pink Glow serum has a very similar result on me anyway. 

My favourite moisturiser. It has plenty of niacinamide, hyaluronic acid and a bunch of other extras. Texture is a medium thick gel that I can make it work under makeup, but I preferred something lighter and this was my night-time moisturizer. 

Repurchase: Yes, but it takes so long now to order from Asia that I got Olaz and Balea instead, both with a lot of niacinamide. 

One of the nicest sheet masks that’s sold here. The sheet is so comfortable and soft, it’s just a delight to use this one, a true pampering session. In terms of results it’s pretty much just moisturizing. 

Repurchase: Yes.  

One of my favourite sheer masks. It gives a nice glow to the skin and it’s nicely moisturizing. 

Repurchase: I have a pack, but yes

NEUTROGENA Cellular Boost 100% Hydrogel Eye Mask

These eye patches have niacinamide (4th), adenosine (5th) and bit of Ascorbyl Glucoside (a form of vitamin C) on the ingredients list. They don’t stand out from other patches from for example Yeauty or Oriflame, which means they are another really nice ones. Lovely to use when your eyes are tired because they are nicely cooling. They are nicely moisturising and a tiny bit plumping, just enough to hide the smallest lines for a while. I’d consider buying these again, though they are so expensive, especially compared to Yeauty, which are the same thing, just with no niacinamide.  

Repurchase : Yes.

DRUNK ELEPHANT Protini Polypeptide Cream

 I liked this, a lot. Damn it. This costs 65 €, which is an absolutely insane amount of money for a face cream. It’s filled to the brim with peptides, so ingredients-wise this is impressive and texture is delightful – light, yet rich enough and feels great to apply. But that much money for a skin care item is simply insulting.

Purchase: No, unless I get a windfall.

A’PIEU Madecassoside Cream

I’ve been eyeing this line for a while because based on my experience with sheet masks, my skin really likes products with madecassoside. But this felt too annoying for a face cream. It’s thick, but not like a balm, more like how Bepanthen feels. It just didn’t want to absorb for forever and I could feel it on my face. 

Purchase: No, but I’d like to try other products from this line.

VERSO Super Facial Serum with Retinol 8

This costs 120 € full size (30 ml ) – I swear some beauty companies have lost touch with reality. But at least this sample lasted me a good week. It has 0.1% concentrated dose of Retinol 8 Complex, which they say is equivalent to 0.8% of normal retinol. Reviews of people who have used this a long longer than me are glowing, but I can’t say much about it after a week and I didn’t notice anything except that it didn’t break me out. It’s very thick, like a balm and I experienced no retinol connected issues such as excessive dryness, sensitivity or peeling. Based on the texture alone, I wasn’t a fan because it’s so thick, but ingredients are nice. 

Purchase: No.


Great texture for dry skin, very similar to L’Occitane’s almond oil, meaning thick and it forms a rich emulsion, but I couldn’t get past the scent. This TBS herbal hemp scent is just not for me, which I not happy about because stuff in this collection is so good, especially the hand cream. 

Repurchase: No. I hope they make another scent with this texture. 

THE BODY SHOP Zesty Lemon Shower Gel

This was a summer LE, so I don’t know if it’s still sold or if leftovers are still available. It smells like hard lemon candy straight from the bottle, but under a shower it develops into a proper, freshly squeezed lemon. Formula is unexpectedly thin for TBS, but not annoyingly so that it would be too runny and it foams ok. 

Repurchase: No.

A scent where I expected coconut, but got just tiare flower, though this one is much better made than the YR one because it just smells more rich. Texture was thick and it didn’t foam a lot, but it was ok. 

Repurchase: No

BATH & BODY WORKS Bubble Bath Champagne Apple & Honey

One of my favourite scents ever. I’ve had this for so long because I was saving it, since it’s a LE and BBW stuff in very hard to get. Formula was nicely thick and foamed ok. I never used as a bath, but as a shower gel. This has the best apple scent with some warm, sweet honey notes. I have a mini body mist with this scent. 

Repurchase: I can’t, but yes.

This has about the same scent as the fragrance from this line, which has a strong scent of tiare flower. It’s a bit less sharp, but no coconut like you’d expect from a beachy collection. Formula is thin and I used up a lot of it at once because it foams poorly, however, it’s SLS/SLES free which is nice to see and due to it I forgive the foaming part. It can be used as a shampoo as well and like I said is sulphate-free plus it’s silicone-free, but I haven’t tried it for that. 

Repurchase: No.

FA Magic Oil Indulgingly caring Shower gel

I’ve gone through several bottles of this. The texture is nicely thick, it foams well and it smells lovely, aquatic floral. 

Repurchase: Yes.

BALEA Duschschaum 

Pure Energy 

I’ve had Balea’s shower mousses before and they were amazing. This is not as rich and firm as I remember, or maybe I’m mixing it up with the Dove one which is just fabulous, but argan version I had smells terrible. Still it’s a nicely fluffy foam that’s nice to use. The scent is more lime than mint and not as intensely citrusy as I expected, it’s kind of subdued for such a scent.

Repurchase: No. 

BATH & BODY WORKS Ultra Shea Body Cream Country Apple

This is one of my absolute favourite moisturiser formulas (aside from Nivea Souffle and The Body Shop butters). It’s thick lotion, like a body butter in a tube and it’s fantastic for dry skin. It comes in a ton of great scents, I have Twilight Woods still on my stash. I got Country Apple because I couldn’t get Champagne Apple & Honey and I thought it’s going to be the same, but this was not as nice of an apple scent. It lacked warmth that made CAH so amazing, so next time I’m getting something new.

Repurchase: Definitely in other scents. 

NIVEA Body Soufflé Coconut & Monoi Oil

I got this for the scent, which again no coconut, just tiare with vanilla, so it left me disappointed, but I loved the texture. This is a seriously good body moisturiser. Not a souffle, but a proper cream, medium thick and very good at properly moisturising, including long term results. Once my stash diminishes a bit I’ll get the cherry blossom version or one of the other two in the same pot which I hope have the regular Nivea scent. 

Repurchase: Yes.

XEN-TAN Premium Sunless Tan

I got this so many years ago I don’t even remember when, but while I was in the middle of this bottle I simply stopped with the self tanning because I just stopped caring. I found this in the back of my cupboard and I’m tossing it because it’s ancient, but it was my favourite and I’ve gone through a couple of bottles even though this is quite expensive. This and St. Tropez mousse where my favourite, but with this one I got a deeper tan faster. St. Tropez was a more pleasant one to use because it dried fast, but the tan lasted longer at this one. 

Repurchase: I’d pick St. Tropez instead if I were still doing this. 

BALEA Handcreme Urea

One of the best hand creams I’ve ever found (the other two are the more expensive L’Occitane Shea Butter 20% and The Body Shop Hemp Cream). It’s great for dry skin, it absorbs quickly and leaves the skin softer than other hand creams. 

Repurchase: Done.

BALEA Fusscreme Urea

One of better foot creams I’ve tried, but not quite enough for me. I prefer this one to the 25% urea version, which was like a balm. This one has a  medium thick texture that feels like a good body moisturizer and it’s similar to their 5% hand cream, just without the silky feeling. It absorbs relatively quickly for a foot cream. It’s got a classic Balea Urea sweet creamy scent. 

Repurchase: Maybe. It’s so far the best I’ve tried, but like I said it’s not enough.

DOVE Nourishing Secrets Restoring Ritual 48h Anti-Pespirant

My standard deodorant. It does the job and that’s what matters. I find stick deodorants are the most reliable on me, but all leave white marks, which I can deal with. 

Repurchase: Done.

BALEA Parfum Deodorant Pure Blossom

This smells very similar to La Vie est Belle by Lancome, so a praline-vanilla-patchouli scent and a very strong one. It holds on better than other deodorants, but it is just that and not an anti-pespirant. I actually used this a lot more as a room spray because this really stays in the air for a while, better than most room sprays with the exception of Bath & Body Works’.

Repurchase: I got the purple Golden Moon version which smells like Alien. 

BALEA Fuss Hornhaut Entferner Socken Feel Well

This was the second time I used this and I’ve noticed they changed the material the socks are made of. The used to made of a cellophane-like clear plastic, but now they are opaque white from a softer plastic. They completely fell apart after 45 minutes. Again I got the same result which is only where the skin is thin it peeled off. It started after 7 days and lasted about 2 weeks. Where my skin is thickest and I’m struggling to get to remover even with an electric file, this did absolutely nothing. But it’s a way to remove skin from the instep and on the top of the feet. 

Repurchase: I don’t know. It’s 4 € for a half-assed result. Maybe.

BARFUSS Hornhaut Entferner Socken

I gave these to mom who used them on the same day as I did Balea. These have “cellophane-like” socks and need to be worn for 90 minutes, so 30 more than Balea. She got zero peeling, absolutely nothing happened. So this was a total waste.

Repurchase: No. 


LE PETITE MARSEILLIAIS Huile Elixir Karité & Argan

This was one of my favourite hair products for very dry hair. It was more efficient than coconut oil and it really could revive very dry hair when used as a pre-wash treatment. For use on dry hair, this was way too thick and greasy, which is precisely what made it a great oil to apply before washing the hair. I usually left it on for a day before washing my hair (I really drenched it usually on a Saturday, left it overnight, applied some more on Sunday morning when my ends absorbed most, then washed my hair in the evening). It has shea oil, which on me works better than coconut oil, but it’s heavy stuff. Sadly, I can’t find it in the shops anymore. I used to buy it in Leclec, but it’s been gone for quite a while. I need to find a replacement, but for now I’m stuck with coconut oil.

Repurchase: Yes if I could

My favourite shampoo for my dry hair that I talk about all the time. It leaves my hair silky and not tangled. 

Repurchase: Done

An excellent, strong purple shampoo that successfully tones yellow. I use it at every wash, either alone (2nd wash) or mixed with a bit of Extraordinary Oil one because thought it’s not drying, it’s doesn’t leave the same silky feeling, so basically it’s just a classic shampoo with a strong tint. 

Repurchase: Done. I have this one always in stock.

It’s a Pantene mask, so obviously it was great. But equally great as the Repair conditioner, which is cheaper. 

Repurchase: Only if Repair conditioner is out of stock, which won’t happen

Just read the text above, these two mask are exactly the same. 

Repurchase: Only if Repair conditioner is out of stock, which won’t happen. 

My favourite hydrating hair treatment. It makes my hair feel silky and soft unlike other treatments and it saved my hair a couple of year ago when nothing was working. This has argan oil high on the list.

Repurchase: Done.

SCHWARZKOPF GLISS Hair Repair Fiber Therapy Bonding Seal Mask 

Despite the thick texture, which usually indicates the formula will be rich enough for thick, dry hair, this wasn’t amazing. It ok for a drugstore product, but nothing exceptional and not as good as Pantene Repair conditioner, which is cheaper. The only extra benefit compared to other masks is that this claims to have a bonding effect, so something along the lines like Olaplex, but there’s only one Olaplex and I’m not sure what Schwarzkopf used here for “bonding” in this one because they are super vague about it. I didn’t notice any result it terms of less breakage or it making the hair stronger, and as you know my hair is bleached, so it should benefit most from such bonding products. Olaplex and Matrix Re-Bond are much better. 

Repurchase: No.

I liked this one a lot. It was nourishing enough for my hair and left it in nice condition, its only fault is that the effects lasted two days max.

Repurchase: Possibly, it’s as good as Pantene. 

A fantastic hair mask for very dry hair. It’s super thick, basically a balm, so it’s hard to spread on the hair, but I managed it with one satchel of 25 ml. Ingredients of this one are great. 

Repurchase: Yes. I want the pot, but it’s not sold in my local Müller. 

A well-established favourite for my very dry hair. Apart from Cantu, the best conditioner I’ve found in my local drugstores.

Repurchase: Done.

One of best drugstore hair treatments, similar to Pantene in terms of effect on my dry hair, though not quite as good and it’s more expensive.

Repurchase: Maybe especially since I’ve seen some new versions, but like I said Pantene is cheaper. 

Surprisingly this has no silicones, which is not common for Pantene and it has panthenol high on the list, which is a good moisturiser. The effect is pretty bland. It’s moisturising, but there are better products that do a bit more (Cantu leave-in cream), still for not so dry hair, this is the leave-in formula I’d give a try because of ingredients and it’s light formula. It needs to be shaken a lot during between spraying because it separates fast. 

Repurchase: Probably not.

L’OREAL Elvital Planta Clear Anti-Schuppen 7 Tage Kophait Lotion

I got tired of looking at this on my shelves, so I’m tossing it. I got it to treat my dandruff and itch, but it’s only partly effective when it comes to itching and useless when it comes to dandruff. I haven’t even seen this in the shops, so it might be discontinued. I hate that every damn anti-dandruff lotion stinks like herbal snaps and then I don’t want to use them because I don’t want to smell like a raging alcoholic with a Jagermaister problem. 

Repurchase: No

This was fantastic, a silicone oil in spray that was great for my dry hair. Unfortunately it’s discontinued. I found a replacement at La Croa and Macadamia Natural Oil. 

Repurchase: It’s discontinued

An absolutely brilliant hair product. Best detangler, it nourishes and adds shine. 

Repurchase: I have two backups because I can’t be without it.  

A standard and good silicone oil. A bit light for my hair as it couldn’t keep my frizz down for long, but for an average user these are nice and the size is good for a bag. It’s also the only size that exists. 

Repurchase: Maybe the keratin one, but these 18 ml bottle mean a few uses for me.  

L’OREAL Casting Crème Gloss 

1010 Marzipan

Hair colour from hell. Ok, I’m exaggerating, but it didn’t cover well and it left my hair feeling like straw. I had to re-colour my hair the next day. I’m sticking to Excellence, I don’t even care it’s a permanent colour and this a demi-permanent, so it’s better for the hair, but Excellence leaves the hair is so much better condition.  

Repurchase: I still have 801, but now I don’t want to use it. 

I’m a bit disappointed how quickly this washed off (to be fair it’s likely my fault because I left Olaplex n.0 + n.3 on the hair overnight, which took a lot of the colour off), but I’m still like the formula. It’s ammonia-free, so it was kind to my scalp and the colour was beautiful. I liked that the formula was so liquid because it was easier to apply than others and it wasn’t messy. This left my hair soft and in nice condition. The size of the conditioner is a travesty though, 12 ml isn’t enough for my ends, let alone my whole hair. 

Repurchase: Yes.

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