My Empties

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Ever since I started focusing on my skincare routine, I've been trying to hone in on products that I love, use over and over again, and produce tangible results. But it's a lot of trial and error to get to that point. This month was a combination of products that will consistently become part of my routine and a few that won't make it into the rotation.

Don't forget about Nordstrom's Beautycycle program. Nordstrom now accepts a variety of empty beauty containers that are often difficult or impossible to recycle through your local municipal recycling program. Look for containers in Nordstrom stores, and simply drop your empties in the boxes. Nordstrom works with a third-party vendor who cleans and recycles the containers, turning them into park benches, watering cans, and more.

So, now let's see what I used and loved (or didn't!) recently.

As soon as I learned that you should apply hyaluronic acid to damp skin, I bought this water for spritzing my face prior to applying my hyaluronic acid. While you can use plain, old tap water to dampen your skin, this water had a fine mist that evenly coated my entire face and felt very refreshing. At less than $11 per bottle, it's a very reasonably priced indulgence that I will definitely purchase again.

Speaking of hyaluronic acid, I gave this one from The Inkey List a try, mostly because of its price point. At $9.99 for a 1.0 fl. oz. bottle, it's hard to beat. It wasn't bad, but it was slightly sticky, and I prefer a hyaluronic acid that's a bit thicker than this one. And I didn't love that it doesn't dispense via a dropper. It's a flip cap that pours into your palm. I prefer a dropper so that I can apply the product directly to my face and then spread it around. I'm most likely not going to purchase this again unless I'm in a pinch.

As far as a moisturizer, I loved this nutrient-rich cream. It left my skin completely hydrated without feeling heavy. As for its anti-aging properties, I can't say that I saw any significant reduction in my wrinkles and fine lines. I would definitely purchase this cream again for use as a nighttime moisturizer, but I know not to expect much in terms of anti-aging.

I am a devotee of Clinique's Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm, but when this cleansing balm from Elemis was half-priced at Ulta, I jumped at the chance to try it at that price point. I was disappointed. Elemis has such a great reputation, and I have friends and family who swear by their products. But this cleansing balm just didn't knock my socks off. I didn't like the thick and gooey consistency, and the scent wasn't strong, but it wasn't entirely nonexistent either. I'll be sticking with my tried and true favorite from Clinique.

This makeup remover has long been a part of my nightly skincare routine. I use it to mainly remove eye makeup. With just a few swipes of a cotton ball, this remover takes off stubborn mascara, eye shadow, and eye liner. Many eye makeup removers tend to be oil-based, it is what makes them effective. But this one doesn't leave an oily residue behind. It would take a really stellar remover to make me switch this one out of my routine.

Shop "My Empties" here:


What To Wear To a Winery

Saturday, May 20, 2023


dress (similar) or this one  | tassel necklace (similar) | thong sandal | straw tote | fedora (similar) | sunglasses

It's wine season here in New Jersey. Local vineyards are gearing up for summer events including wine tastings, vineyard tours, and outdoor concerts. If you are unsure what to wear on a warm summer afternoon or evening while sipping tasty local wines, read on.

Slipdress - You want to be casual, comfortable, and stylish for a wine tasting. An easy slipdress is perfect for the occasion. This one is another inexpensive but cute option.

Tassel Necklace - Kick the dress up a notch by adding a fabulous necklace.

Straw Fedora - Hats are stylish and functional. Protect your skin and look good in the process with a straw fedora.

Sandals - Chances are you'll be doing some walking at a vineyard. If you're planning to tour the grounds, a flat sandal is your best choice.

Straw Tote - A wine tote is a must-have accessory. With room for a bottle of wine, acrylic glasses, a wine openera wine stopper, and more, this chic tote will hold all of your essentials.

Sunglasses - Vineyards aren't known for their shade, so be sure to bring your sunnies with you.

If you plan on staying in to the evening, grab a blazer or a denim jacket for later.

The key is to be comfortable while still maintaining your style. Simplicity is the focus of this outfit. Wine is easy. Your outfit should be as well.