ME lately

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I don’t know man, but you know I’m kind of at a loss these days. I research products before I buy. I read some blogs, and also look at website reviews of products before I buy anything. Sometimes, I’ll buy a product because it’s a brand I like and have products that work for me already.

But this summer, I bought a few things that were highly rated and had good reviews, and in the end, they just didn’t work for me at all.

1.Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Cleanser


This has an almost 5 star rating on Sephora, so you’d think I love it. Nope. It breaks me out like crazy and dries my skin out. It’s just way too harsh for my skin type. I passed it on to my hubby who has oily skin, so at least it wasn’t a total loss. He likes it fine, but it’s not life-changing as many of the reviewers say it is. Lesson learned: Cream Cleansers are what work for my skin like the Avène one, and also oil cleaners like the Tatcha Cleansing Oil I use to remove sunscreen. No more foamy cleansers for me.

The next two products are from Algenist. I love the brand and trust it, as I have used a few products that worked so well for me. But these two next products were huge fails for me.

2. Algenist Reveal Concentrated Color Correcting Drops


I bought this when the whole colour-correcting phase was hyped up a few months ago. It’s not a bad product, but it’s so full of silicones. I hate silicones as you know. What happens is that sure, this helps with my redness but it accentuates any dry spots on my face. That and I can’t stand the silicone feeling on my face. It makes me feel like my skin can’t breathe. So, this went back to the store. And in case you’re wondering if I bought another colour-correcting product the answer is NOPE. After this encounter I kind of realized how DUMB the whole crazed up hype was and why would I want to add another step to putting on makeup? Like no thanks man. I’ll just use my foundation only, thanks.

3. Algenist Power Advanced Wrinkle Fighter Serum


Yup, another Algenist product. To be honest it’s not the product I have a problem with it’s THE STUPID PACKAGING. WHY do companies insist on using a freakin’ dropper as a way to dispense a product that isn’t liquid enough? This serum is thicker-like a lotion, so the dropper doesn’t work AT ALL. I had to dig a q-tip in to get some out and WHY. After a week of that nonsense, back it went as well. So I’ll never know if it is a good wrinkle fighter or not. And come to think of it, this is the 3rd product from Algenist I’ve had issues with. Three strikes means:  yer’OUT Algenist. You are off my list of trusted brands now.

HYPE. BAD PACKAGING. Fake reviews making me believe products are good? Maybe? Here’s why I’m thinking that last one is plausible: I was contacted by a company-can’t remember who, but it was for a skincare item to review. Well, in exchange for the product, they didn’t want a blog post. They wanted me to go to Amazon and write a positive REVIEW. And once I posted that review, they’d also pay me $20. UMMMMM…..NOPE. I don’t do that shady shit. But I’m thinking a LOT of people do.

I think I’m just going to have to be even smarter before I purchase products. What I’m trying to say is this: remember your skin type before buying something someone else likes. KNOW what ingredients don’t work for you, and those that do. I can’t stress these two points enough. If you remember them, you’ll honestly save yourself a lot of grief AND not fall for hype…as much…haha. Oh, and shop at a place that has a good return policy! This is one reason why I don’t shop for skincare(unless it’s something I already use like Avene or Vichy or La Roche Posay) at Shoppers Drug Mart. I’d much rather shop there don’t get me wrong, as I’d love to get Optimum Points instead of silly Sephora Perks. But, at least Sephora will take back my failed purchases. Nordstrom Canada does as well, so that’s a good place to shop if you have the option. I’d wish The Bay would adopt Nordstrom’s return policy because wow, have you checked all the brands they’ve been adding online, like Erborian? So cool! I do not know about Holt Renfrew’s return policy as it’s just not an easy place for me to shop at, so if you know, let us know!

As for hype? Yeah, well that’s a hard one. What helps me avoid hype is again knowing what I like and don’t like. For example, I just don’t do eyeshadows anymore. I don’t bother anymore with them, and now that I’ve accepted that fact, I’m pretty immune to any new makeup releases that involve shadows. Any palettes with them, I don’t care about AT all. Lipsticks on the other hand? GIMME. Also, I don’t follow the big blogs that showcase all the new products. Most of the time I have no idea about new products, until I get an email from a website, or if a trusted friend reviews it. Being oblivious really helps with avoiding hype  😛

Do you rely too much on good reviews as well when purchasing a product? I hope I haven’t steered anyone wrong … and if I did I hope you returned the failed product I liked! 

So, I’m thinking most of the Holiday Makeup Palettes are kind of a pass this year from what I’ve been seeing. I mean there’s a few that look good, but I think my money will be going towards more skin care this year. And a lipstick or too! 😉

I do think Sephora has some pretty awesome skincare sets that are worth looking into. Most of the major skincare players have something in a value set this year, and one brand that I really think is awesome is Algenist. The story of how Algenist came to be is pretty neat actually. Biotech scientists from San Francisco were trying to develop a renewable energy solution using micro algae. But they discovered that a compound surrounding the micro algae had the ability to regenerate and protect living cells. They tested it and tested it, calling it Alguronic Acid. And then created a line of antiaging products that contain this powerful ingredient.

Before my skin went nuts, I was using the Algenist Genius Cream and LOVING it. I had samples that lasted me pretty much the whole California Road trip, and I bought a full size of it as soon as I got back home. I plan to go back to using it as I was seeing some great results with it, even though I was only using it once a day. I’ve never actually seen seen such a difference in my skin’s firmness before I started using that cream. And it didn’t irritate my skin or break me out. I really do think that if you’re pretty serious about anti-aging skincare, these two sets from Algenist should be on your Sephora VIB Sale Shopping List.

Algenist The Anti Wrinkle Collection ($52)

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Algenist The Anti-Wrinkle Collection

Algenist The Anti Wrinkle Collection is a great little starter set to see what the line is really all about. You get a full size of the Gentle Rejuvenating Cleanser, a one ounce size of the Regenerative Anti-Aging Moisturizer, and a nice deluxe mini of the  Complete Eye Renewal Balm.

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Algenist The Anti-Wrinkle Collection

The cleanser is really gentle and doesn’t strip your skin at all. I promise you’ll see results from the Regenerative Anti-Aging Moisturizer and the eye cream too!

Algenist The Firming Collection ($98)

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Alienist The Firming Collection

Algenist The Firming Collection is a bit more money, but SO worth it. You get a deluxe mini of the Gentle Rejuvenating Cleanser, a full size of the Retinol Firming & Lifting Serum, and a deluxe mini of the Firming & Lifting Cream.

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Algenist The Firming Collection

This set will really reduce lines and wrinkles and lift and tone the skin since it contains a retinol product. It’s a really great value too, and I’ve heard amazing things about that retinol serum and can hardly wait to be able to start to use it.

I haven’t been able to test these products yet, but I do plan on using them soon! But I really wanted to tell you about them as I think they’re amazing value. If you’re looking for some new skincare, these sets at Sephora would be perfect!

Are you planning on getting some new skincare at the Sephora VIB Sale? Have you tried anything from Algenist? It’s a brand that I can say I’ve actually seen visible results from and is worth the money. 

*products sent by PR for review, thoughts are mine as always! And CRIPES writing this post was ridiculous. My MAC kept autocorrecting ALGENIST to ALIENIST. I swear autocorrect was created by Satan himself…. 😛