Now, without further ado, let's get stuck into some samples I've been collecting lately again.
1) Dr Schrammek Perfect Beauty Fluid (for normal and dry skin)
Full size: £50 for 40ml
Unless you've been living under a rock for the past year or so, BB creams won't be anything new to you. While the massive hype started in the Far East, the cream was actually invented in Germany, as a post-surgery treatment to make women look and feel fabulous without irritating their skin. The name behind this genius invention is none other than Dr. Schrammek, whose daughter has now adapted the original (and fairly thick and pasty) formula to the demands of the modern woman in bringing out the "Perfect Beauty Fluid".
I was very excited to try out this "mother of all BB creams" and I got two sets of samples, one for dry to normal skin and one for oily and combination skin. I started out with this one as my skin was behaving fairly well, so didn't feel like I needed much coverage.
Most of the time when selecting beauty products for my face I go straight to the palest shade and upon swatching it did seem like "Ivory" would be a fairly good fit. Unfortunately it made my skin look grey, dull and to be frank, fairly ghastly, but I'd already thrown away the other shades, so I had to blush and bronze a little bit of life back into my complexion.
The cream applied quite thick as you'd expect from a BB cream, but dried into a heavenly smooth and velvety finish which lasted all day long (not 8 hour working day, but really ALL DAY). The formula is really impressive, but having to buy two shades to blend them together makes it a bit of a no-go for me.
2) L'Oreal Revitalift Total Repair BB Cream
Full size: £14.99 for 50ml
When I was in my teens I felt like 23 was ancient; that kind of age where you have to be grown up and have a job, a house and the first out of two and a half children. Now that I'm 23 I sometimes still feel like a kid. Despite that, I'm getting more and more interested in anti-ageing skincare, as I am a firm believer that prevention is better than cure.
Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to comment on anti-ageing properties of products such as this BB cream (yes, another one of those), not only because it's a tiny sachet which only provided enough cream for one application.
What I can tell you was that I was pleasantly surprised by L'Oreals "other" BB cream offering (let's not even get started on Nude Magique and how appalled I am by it). I was expecting a thick, greasy paste that would sit on my skin and make it sweat underneath. Instead, this BB cream was surprisingly light-weight, with just the right amount of coverage to even out my skin while preserving a natural look. Despite the fact that the shade was a smidgen too dark in the swatch, it blended out very easily on my face and literally melted into my skin. I'm very pleased with this and would consider repurchasing the full size.
3) Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist 24 Intensive Eye Contour Cream
Full size: £52 for 15ml
Some people feel that it is a completely unnecessary step in a skin care routine, but I am a firm believer in eye cream. The right one can make you instantly feel refreshed, awake and alert and hide a multitude of sins (we're only human after all).
With this one, I should have heard the alarm bells ring when I saw "intensive" on the packaging. Now, intensive is often a good thing, but in the case of this eye cream it brings it down ever so slightly.
In this case, "intensive" translates into "really rather greasy" on my skin. The cream already feels quite waxy in the pot, which can make it difficult to get the right amount out of the pot. For a night treatment it feels lovely and very nourishing, but in the mornings you have to give it a lot of time to sink in before applying make-up, or otherwise your eyeshadow or eye liner will slip. Once it's sunk in it's absolutely fine and has no impact on make-up whatsoever, but if you're time strapped in the mornings you may want to give this one a miss.
4) Alessandro Pedix Feet Heel Rescue Balm
Full size: €14,95 for 100ml
This one's a relic from my last German Glossybox which I received in July. I wasn't overly happy to see another Alessandro product, as my experience with the brand so far hadn't been overly positive. I also don't really believe in creams that claim to soften your feet - in the end, only a good and thorough scrubbing will do the job properly.
This cream has changed my mind a little, though. The smell is exactly what you'd expect from a foot cream: Herby, minty and lemony - I'm not entirely sure why this seems to have become a convention among foot creams, but I shall get back to the topic. The balm sinks in fairly well and - the thing that surprised me the most - it really does make your heels a little softer. Now, with my new job I'm constantly on my feet, so they get battered during the day, but this really helped to revive them a little bit. I'm still not necessarily going to run to an Alessandro counter first thing when I next go to Germany, but it's been a pleasant surprise nonetheless.