January Beauty Round-up

Happy 2020! Glad to be back after a bit of a break with more beauty reviews and other fun content. I took some time off to make a big change in my professional life, leaving my longtime job as a project manager to pursue some new creative projects.

I also wanted to think more about what I want this blog to be. Last year, I really just focused on beauty, but the idea behind it was always to showcase more experiences, places, things and people worth a second look. I’ve missed writing on a more regular basis, so that’s what I plan on doing this year.

Yes, there will be plenty of beauty content — I haven’t stopped spending all of my spare money on skincare yet — but I look forward to using this space as an outlet for more aspects of life in NYC and beyond. I hope you’ll stay tuned.

To kick things off, I thought it would be better to round up all of the beauty products I’ve used up each month to share what I loved and what didn’t quite work for me. Let’s get into it.


ARCONA Brightening Gommage — I first heard about this product from Into the Gloss, right around the time I was looking for a new scrub. I really liked the texture of it, which was just abrasive enough because come on, a scrub has to be, but it didn’t feel like it was damaging my skin. I would massage it on and then hop in the shower to let it do it’s magic for a few minutes before rinsing it off and found it really did give me a nice glow for the day.

Collosol Eau de Lait — This is hands down my new favorite eye makeup remover. I have typically stayed away from them because the usual oily mix of ingredients always gave me those white bumps around my eyes. But this one, which was also a favorite of the late, more-than-great Karl Lagerfeld, removes all my makeup without leaving any pre-clogging residue behind. One con is that it will sting if you get it into your eyes so keep those babies closed.

Botaniko Skin Papaya Enzyme Mask — Similar in application to the ARCONA gommage, this mask-scrub hybrid was my go-to Saturday pick-me-up. It has a more abrasive texture so don’t go too nuts with it, but your face will be so soft afterward. It didn’t dry mine out either. Fair warning, it will make your sink look like a gardening catastrophe so I also recommend using it in the shower once a week.

Pixi Beauty Glycolic Body Wash — Obviously, this brand first caught my eye at Target because of the name. I mean, come on. But what I was really looking for was a less expensive dupe for this body wash from Dr. Lancer. Now, it’s my preferred post-workout cleanser to get rid of sweat and give my skin some gentle exfoliation. It’s very sudsy so it definitely lasts longer than the Dr. Lancer body wash, which is a bonus. Get out that Red Card and get your 5%!


iS Clinical Copper Firming Mist — I’m a sucker for a celebrity recommendation, if you haven’t figured that out by now. This one was showcased by none other than Rachel Berry herself, Lea Michele, whose skin is UNREAL. Ugh, to have her budget. Anyway, this spray is a lovely mist to use throughout the day on your face, neck and chest, but I can’t say I saw any longterm changes to make it worth spending the money on again.

Shani Darden Texture Reform — I’m not putting this serum in the pass pile because I didn’t like it, I’m just ready to graduate to the stronger stuff. I first got this product in my Box of Style and it took me a while to get into it. I’ve been using stronger retinols for a while but thought something gentler would be better for winter. I used it 6 days a week for over a month without any major changes and then all of a sudden, the glow hit. My forehead looks smoother and my skin is so dewy in the morning. Definitely try it if you’re new to retinoids and retinol.

Biologique Recherche Serum Dermopore — This serum was recommended to me as the next step after Serum Complexe Iribiol, but I wasn’t very impressed. I didn’t have an adverse reaction to it, but it didn’t help with oiliness much. I also become more convinced each day that “reducing pore size” is just not a thing. A rare BR miss.

See what else I’ve used up here.

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