"We are the Samples, my friends!" #1

Welcome to a new skincare post! This time we're talking about sample sized and single-use products that I have tried once or used for a week and my first impressions on them. The idea for this post is inspired by Fran's series of posts "We are the Samples, my Friends" on Being Cute is Not a Crime which I find always very useful. Some of these samples are a bit older, but others I used in my trip to Italy last week and have fresh impressions to deliver.

I left for Italy with a lot of Kiehl's products to put them to the test together and since I have a huge collection to work through. The Kiehl's Tumeric & Cranberry Seed Radiance Mask was a nice 15 minute experience, especially with the added physical scrub of the seeds while rinsing it off. I wasn't wowed enough to think of buying a full size, but I liked it. A product from the brand that I really want to buy full size at some point is the Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate. It is just so luscious and leaves my skin feeling amazing the next day. The price point is almost double my usual Body Shop and Pai oils, so I haven't found a good excuse to buy it yet. It's daytime counterpart the Kiehl's Daily Reviving Concentrate is also a lovely oil but my combination oily skin isn't best served by an oil in the morning and I used it only in the weekend mornings at home. During my mini trip to Italy I recently finished a sample of the Kiehl's Powerful Stregth Line-Reducing Concentrate and absolutely loved it! I used it for four nights before my oil. I felt a warm tingly feeling the first time and then no more, but rather a tightening of the skin. I was really impressed and would consider this in a few years when signs of aging become seriously visible. As my daily moisturizer I used a sample of the Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel-Cream that lasted me 5 days! The gel texture is very light and feels like a drink of water for the skin, however I didn't find that it did much to keep my oiliness at bay during the day.

Other wonderful serum I used in Italy is the Vichy Idealia Life Serum. I used up a whole bottle of the Aqualia serum and loved it, the Idealia is a richer more nourishing version. It is a cream instead of a gel-like lotion and suited for normal and dry skin more than mine, but I still enjoyed it very much. I won't get the full size but do recommend it. I also liked the deluxe sample of the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye cream I got from Fran, but as usual I cannot tell whether an eye cream really does something for me or not, so I enjoyed it while it lasted but won't go purchase such an expensive cream that didn't wow me.

I tried some samples and mono-dose masks lately and thought to put my thoughts here quickly. The Sephora Honey Sheet Mask was a wonderful treat and a funny joke to play on my man. He was quite shocked when I walked in the living room with the cloth mask on, it was so funny! I really recommend these sheet masks from Sephora's home brand. They come in so many variations and I want to try their eye and hand masks as well. The Montagne Jeunesse Honey and Cream mask was also an incredible nourishing mask that I really enjoyed. If you stumble upon it, do try it! I purchased a pack of Pilaten Black Head Pore Strips on Ebay and opened one. It is a very runny black fluid and you have to apply a very thin layer to the face. In theory, it sticks to all the dead cells and impurities that you then peel off when the mask is dry. In reality, it sticks to your skin and peach fuzz which then pulls like hell when you remove the mask. It does a mediocre job at deep cleansing the pores and I don't think that all the pulling I feel when taking it off is actually good for my skin. I used it only in my t-zone a couple of times because the sachet allows for multiple uses, but I didn't get to like it with further use. Meh.

So here were my samples, my friends. I m really making a point of using my samples up while I'm traveling since I have accumulated a huge amount of them. You'll see more of these posts coming. Let me know if you enjoy them in the post below and go say Hi to Fran ove on Being Cute is not a Crime for me!