Makeup,  Skincare

The Used Up 2021:1

Time to go through all of the makeup and skincare items that were used up by me during the first half of 2021, January-June. A total of 22 items, whereas five of them are makeup items. I do not include body care, haircare or any SPF in this roundup post, since I do not care to have a follow up for those categories.

Some notes about my skin – I have dehydrated combination skin. I am noticing my skin changing a lot because of ageing (I’m 39) so I am slowly adjusting my routine to its evolving needs. I still get the occasional breakout and can get quite shiny during the day. My skin rarely reacts badly to products and I have no allergies.


I managed to use up a total of five cleansing products during this period and one is a mini. The Rose Cream Cleanser by Pixi (135 ml, 279 SEK) has been a steady part of mosts instalments of The Used Up and I used it as my only cleanser in the morning and as my second cleanser in the evening. I still think it is a lovely product – I love the texture, the scent and the effect. But I have noticed previously, as mentioned in earlier posts, that one tube does not last me as long as I want it to and I wish to find a replacement that lasts longer for the price.

The Olive Cleansing cleanser by Maria Åkerberg is such a replacement purchase. I used up a mini, that I bought as part of a spa kit, and enjoyed the texture and the smell enough to buy the large bottle (250 ml, 229 SEK). However after a while I noticed that the smell started to bother me so I think I might refrain from buying it again. For now at least.

The Rehydrating Rosepetal Cleanser by Elemis (200 ml, 365 SEK) was also purchased as an effort to replace the one from Pixi. The pump dispenser worked well and on a normal day I would use 2-3 pumps for my entire face. The rose smell was a bit too much for my taste but it is i no way off-putting. It is an ok product but I do not feel enticed enough to repurchase.

Nourishing Omega-Rich Cleansing Oil by Elemis (195 ml, 465 SEK) is a product that I used up back in 2019 and decided to try again. It is lovely and smooth oil that effectively removes makeup. I could use it on my eyes without any big problems. The big plus with this product is that it lasts for a long time, more than six months, which would warrant the price. I’ve not experimented with many cleansing oils previously, since I used to prefer balms, but I will try and see if I can find another oil that is a little less expensive or one from a brand that I have more feelings for, you know.

Toner & mists

One type of mist that I use quite seldom is a more hydrating and nourishing mist, like the Glow Mist (80 ml, 249 SEK) by Pixi. It contains oils and this I would use during the day when I want some hydration on top of makeup or in the evening as a last skincare step. I do not use this as a “glow getter” since I have combination skin and my natural glow, or shine if you will, will come naturally anyway. I use it more like a comforting and calming hug for the face when it feels in need. I have repurchased this specific product but in the Rose version.

I continue to mist my face after cleansing before I apply serums etc, both in the morning and evening. I have enjoyed the Nordic Hydra Facial Mist (50 ml, 99 SEK) from Lumene just fine. It is hydrating, has a nice scent and the mister works well. This and the Vitamin-C version have been in my previous iterations of The Used Up numerous times. However I am a bit out of love with Lumene as a brand and will phase out all of my recurring favourites from them. When I finished this last bottle I switched back to the Hydrating Accelerator from Josh Rosebrook again. I found it in the larger bottle (120 ml) and I currently enjoy using it a lot more than I did the first time around.

Essence & serums

A recurring product is the Nordic-C Glow Boost Essence by Lumene (30 ml, 289 SEK). I go through these quite quickly and have another bottle in use right now. But after that I will break the habit and find other hydrators.

The theme continues – two tubes of the Rose Caviar Essence by Pixi (45 ml, 399 SEK) emptied in six months yet again. I have continued to use this product twice daily to layer hydration but I’m not really comfortable with the fact that I go through four tubes in a year. That is a bit much since I combine it with the Lumene essence and those seem to go in a similar rate. That is a lot of money for my hydrating sandwich. I will probably buy the Caviar Essence again in the future but for now I’m going to try some other serums and see if I can get my hydration boost for a little less money.

Niacimide 10% + Zinc 1% by the Ordinary (30 ml, 69 SEK) is what I use whenever my skin is prone to breakouts and I usually apply it over the affected area or the t-zone. I have another bottle in use right now. It feels like it calms everything down a bit.

Moisturisers & oils

This is my second jar of Hydration Recharge Overnight Cream (50 ml, 209 SEK) by Lumene from their Nordic Hydra series. I used it as a night cream on top of serums and/or oils. I’m not repurchasing because – Lumene.

I purchased the 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil (30 ml, 134 SEK) by The Ordinary primarily to use when doing face massage on myself (I have a tendency to tense my jaw and a massage really helps). Then I also started to use it in the evenings whenever I felt like my skin needed a “blanket”. I rarely use oils but this one works very well with my combination skin. It smells a bit interesting, like hay or something, but I’ve grown so accustomed to the smell that now I find it comforting. It did start to go off when I was a the end of the bottle so the shelf-life of 12 months after opening is about right. I have repurchased this product and I find it to be very useful.


The Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Overnight Hydrating Masque (125 ml, 330 SEK) was a spontaneous purchase when I still lived in Gothenburg and had a Kiehl’s counter readily available. On paper it looked like a great product for me since I really enjoy moisturising overnight masks and it was a huge jar for a reasonable price. I’ve had previous positive encounters with the Ultra Facial series as well. But this product is really not for me. It’s a clear jelly-like product that smells very little but still has a slight chemical scent that is hard to describe. It does not sink into the skin at all but rather leaves a thick sticky surface that gets everywhere including my pillow. I hate sleeping in it and that totally defeats the purpose. I’ve been doing masks really infrequently since I dislike this one so much and that is a shame. I’m so glad it is finally empty so that I could purchase a replacement for that category. I have done that and it’s by M Picaut.

I used the Blue Herbal Spot Treatment (15 ml, 200 SEK) by Kiehl’s on any blemishes to stop them in their track. It worked just fine but when dried down it did leave a film on the skin. Even if that was just a small area it did have a tendency to pill whenever I touched the skin. This tiny tube lasted me a very long time since a little goes a long way and that is a pro for sure but I do not feel inclined to buy it again. I would prefer something that does not form such a prominent film. I’ve purchased a replacement from Pixi.

I really hated the Lumene Deeply Purifying Birch Charcoal Mask (75 ml, 129 SEK) from day one. The consistency felt like applying liquid plastic on my face and the mask did nothing for my skin. The scent did nothing for me either, it was a pain to remove and every time I used it felt like a chore. But I did it, I finished the damned thing! And I will never ever consider buying this product again. I am yet to find/buy a replacement for its position.

Base makeup

My last pressed powder by Soap and Glory, One Heck of a Blot Mattifying Powder (9 g, £12), is now used up. I stocked up on this lovely product when I was in London many years ago and now I have used all of them up. I can highly recommend it if you like a translucent pressed setting powder and can get your hands on it.

Following with two Lumene base items, one being the Under Eye Concealer (5 ml, 149 SEK). This exact packaging does not seem to be available anymore but they have a similar product in their line. It worked well for me but it is not available in any other shades. It’s an apricot corrector type shade but I have a hard time thinking this would work for everyone. I will not repurchase.

The Blur Foundation (30 ml, 199 SEK) in “0 Light Ivory” has been repurchased over the years but Lumene has changed the shades, the formula and even the artwork for this product so many times over the past years that I have lost count. Every time I repurchase there seems to be a new version of the same product/shade. This version of Light Ivory was way too pink for me and I have another one in rotation and surprise surprise, it’s different. I currently have both “0” and “00” and this time around the formula seems to be thicker. The shade match is better now but neither of them are the perfect match. I am a bit over trusting Lumene with this foundation since it is so inconsistent in shade and formulation. I will use up the two tubes that I have and that’s it.

Mascara & brows

After trying to find an option for the Lash Power mascara by Clinique I found out that Surratt made tubing mascaras and wanted to try them out for myself. First i bought the Pointilliste Mascara (2 g, 300 SEK) by mistake, not realising it was such a small tube and therefore also a small amount. It is aimed to be used for the lower lashes and has a tiny brush, but I could use on the top lashes as well. But the price point is ridiculous for such a tiny amount of product. When the Relevée Mascara (6 g, 320 SEK) cam in stock I bought it and used them both simultaneously. Now that I have finished both I will only repurchase the Relevée but I will clean and save the brush for Pointilliste. As with most tubing mascaras the result is quite basic but I do find that Relevée is buildable if I wait a little bit before applying more. Not too long so that the mascara dries, but just going back and forth between both eyes a bit allows it to build somewhat. Not a fat lash by any means, but thicker and a bit more definition. I did suffer a tiny bit of fallout “smudge” on some days but nothing that bothers me at this point. I enjoy this product and as mentioned I have repurchased. The packaging is sleek and the brush is nice and slim, just how I like it. The big draw-back is the price tag. I am not too happy with 320 SEK for a consumable like this but it will do for now.

That was it, six months of used up products. I’m currently very uninspired by skincare and there are few brands that pique my interest nowadays. I’m looking to try some more items from Josh Rosebrook, M Picaut and Pixi. I’m also looking at Swedish brand Acasia since I’ve not tried any of their products but heard good things about them. But what I really long for is to not have to experiment and try new skincare products a lot, but rather to find my core basics from brands that I like. And with a little luck those products will last me a long time so that I do not have to repurchase all the frakking time. Until then..

Thanks for reading!

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