More empties people. Love it. Let’s sift through my trash!


HAIR STUFF. What? No Batiste. Nope, not this time around. I did finish up two cans of VO5 Plump It Up Dry Shampoo. It’s effective; it’s cheaper than Batiste, so what’s not to love?

I finally made my way through a bottle of Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Leave-In Conditioner. The scent of this product is really lovely. But…it’s quite costly (I think it was around NZ$30.00) and I didn’t notice it doing anything amazing for my hair. So won’t repurchase.

Klorane Conditioning Balm with Mango Butter. When I was living in Australia, I would always buy a Klorane shampoo and conditioner. I’ve not seen the brand in New Zealand and this conditioner I bought overseas. Loved the delicate mango aroma. The conditioner is quite thick and did a great job giving my hair some shine. Will see if I can purchase it on the internet.

SOAPS. Another bottle of my favourite brand, Dr Bronner’s Pure Castille Liquid Soap, this time the rose scent. I always have a bottle of Dr Bronner’s in the house.

Sabun Olive Oil Soap. This is handmade in Syria and was the rose variety. I’ve used these soaps for years, but will now give them a rest. The bar is just too large to handle and I’m a bit over them.

Himalaya Herbals Almond & Rose Soap. This is a brand I discovered when working in Bhutan back in 2013. An Indian market in Christchurch carries some of the range. Really liked this soap – very creamy and silky. Would repurchase.

A lavender soap from Portugal that my mother-in-law gave me. I think the brand is Caricia. Super-creamy and just a lovely soap to enjoy.

An organic soap I bought in Bali a couple of years ago and finally got around to using. Quite lovely actually – a delicate papaya orange scent by a brand called Aura.

SHOWER STUFF. I went through a bottle of body wash from NZ brand, Only Good. Their products are made in New Zealand, 100% natural, palm free, no petrochemicals, and are not tested on animals. I tried the Awaken body wash, which is scented with orange, lemongrass and ginger. Really liked it and now have the Vitality body wash lined up and ready to go.

The Body Shop drench sponge, which is a synthetic, latex-free sponge I use in the shower. Had it for ages and it was still going strong, but thought I should replace it.

The Body Shop body butter in Peach. At least I think it’s peach; it was a gift with purchase and is a small tub. I LOVE the body butters from TBS but this one I wasn’t a great fan of – don’t fancy smelling like a fruit bowl.

CLEANSERS. Powered my way through another Bioderma cleanser. I bought it in Rome and decided it had to be finished off. From the sensitive range, it’s the Sensibio Lait or cleansing milk for sensitive skin. I actually preferred this to the Sensibio H20 I finished up recently. A lovely silky milk that wiped off makeup easily and left my skin feeling soft. Would repurchase.

I also knocked off a cleansing oil I picked up in Malaysia. Can’t remember the name of it, but it’s very popular in Asia. Liked it but wouldn’t rave about it. I prefer The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Oil.

Weleda One Step Cleanser & Toner. I’m a great fan of Weleda. I use their almond moisturizer, but this cleanser was just awful. It was the smell – a strong herbal whiff – and I don’t think it was a very effective cleanser. I tossed it when I was half-way through the bottle.

Nivea Gentle Facial Cleansing Wipes. I always have a packet of cleansing wipes on hand. I like the Nivea brand as the wipes remain moist and are gentle on the skin.

Earth Science Chamomile & Green Tea Eye Makeup Remover. Love anything by Earth Science. This product was very gentle, didn’t sting my eyes and was very effective. Would certainly buy again.

SKIN STUFF. Quite a bit finished up.

Another bottle of Evolu Eye & Lip Serum. This is a New Zealand brand I’ve used for years and the serum is great. Lightweight, absorbs easily but has enough power to combat the signs of ageing. All sorts of goodies in this serum: tigernut extract; marine wakame algae; and shea butter. I’m currently trialing two new eye creams – one is the Azulene eye treatment cream from Earth Science; the other is the Reviva Labs Eye Complex Firming Cream. Both are lovely but I will pick up another Evolu serum down the track.

Very sad to finish up an eye cream from La Prairie – the Cellular Radiance eye cream. I bought this in South Africa and I think it cost a hefty NZ$210.00!! But worth every cent. Rich, creamy and a little goes a long way. A dream of a cream.

Royal Nectar Moisturizing Facelift Cream by New Zealand brand, Nelson Honey. I’ve used some of their products before and I really liked this cream. It contains bee venom (all the rage) and I did think it tightened up the skin a bit. Would definitely repurchase.

Simple Protecting Light Moisturizer with SPF 15. My first go at the Simple brand. I liked it a lot. No fuss moisturiser that was light-weight on my oily combo skin. I will look into more products from this range.

Dr Hauschka Regenerating Serum. Fantastic product. Free from mineral oils, parabens and silicone; and contains quince seed. I used this serum under their Rose Day cream. I am very partial to anything from this brand as it’s a quality brand.

Maria Åkerberg is a brand I found whilst in Sweden. I use their rose facial oil and their bronzer has made my top list of bronzers many times. It’s an organic range of products featuring organic vegetable oils. I finished up their Serum Antirouge, designed to calm down and treat skin that might be inflamed from rosacea. Contains a combination of horse chestnut, poria, common reed, cypress, and neroli. It certainly helped my skin a lot. I will have to order from Sweden I think because I haven’t seen Maria Åkerberg products available on any of the usual international skin or makeup websitea. I certainly want to continue using the brand and would love to try some of the cleansers.

Nellie Tier Frankincense & Rose facial oil. Oh my. Where to begin. This is a New Zealand brand and the facial oil is possibly the best I’ve ever used. It has a beautiful scent to it; not strong despite the frankincense. A bottle of this liquid gold costs around NZ$42.00 but lasts well over a year. Sad to finish it. I will repurchase once I’ve made my way through my current facial oil (which is the Maria Åkerberg rose facial oil).

MAKEUP. Not a lot finished up because I have eyeshadows and mascaras on heavy rotation. VERY sad to finish up my last tube of the Helena Rubenstein Lash Queen mascara in Chinchilla Blue. This blue-coloured mascara was discontinued years ago. I bought a stash of it in Hong Kong in 2010 I think and this is the last tube. We are not talking the electric blue mascara of the 1980s. We’re talking a light navy that gave the lashes just a hint of colour, and is more forgiving than black mascara. I might have to go back to the Aubergine mascara of Dr Hauschka, which I really like or their navy one.

Innoxa Perfect Lash mascara. Another brand I’m partial to and have used on and off for years. I think this is my fifth tube of this mascara. Doesn’t clump and glides easily onto the lashes. A good old standby.

ELF High Definition Undereye Setting Powder. A little pot that goes a long way. I wasn’t that fussed about it but….since I’ve run out, I’ve come to realise that it’s very very good, so will need to repurchase. It certainly lightens and brightens the undereye area.

Bare Minerals Well Rested Eye Brightener. This is a cult product that’s been around for years. I liked the silky powder but I think it’s too yellow for my NC15 porcelain skin. I prefer the ELF version.

My favourite go-to-lipstick of the moment – Essence Long Lasting Lipstick #7 Natural Beauty. Creamy, stays on through thick and thin. It’s a beautiful colour if you’re looking for “my lips but better”. I have another two lined up ready to go.

PERFUMES. Two finished up. The first one is an old favourite – by the American designer, Jessica McClintock – and is called Jessica McClintock for Women. First released in 1988. It’s a floral fragrance, which I’m usually not a fan of (preferring a heavier Oriental), but I think it’s the blackcurrent in this that I really like. I have a second bottle in my stash.

Karma by LUSH. Who would have thought that LUSH could make a good perfume (I didn’t). I love Karma soap and the Karma Kream, so why not the perfume with its orange, lavender and lemongrass top notes?! I’m into my second bottle already and it’s very easy to travel with Karma.

TOOTHPASTE. Two more tubes of my favourite Red Seal toothpaste – Natural and Baking Soda. A great New Zealand brand and the Natural toothpaste is SLS-free.

Finally….another packet of The Body Shop Organic Cotton Rounds. Can’t go wrong with these.