My No-Buy January + Empties

Hello, 2018! I’m not really one to keep resolutions, so I decided to reformat mine as challenges instead. Along with trying to bring my lunch most days each week, I challenged myself to a January no-buy and, alongside, to really focus on using up products I already had.

My friend Stella does a monthly empties and I’ve always found that so inspiring. And, unsurprisingly, when you’re focused on using up what you have, you’re less likely to run out and buy yet another lipstick. A win for both my bank account and my husband’s desire to have a home where every surface isn’t covered in makeup.

This is everything I finished in January 2018:


Dermalogica Antioxidant Hydramist 

An old favourite from my pre-wedding days, I snapped up this mist in lieu of another pricey bottle of my go-to Tata Harper spritz. I didn’t see a major difference when I used this and found my serum and moisturizer didn’t go on as nicely as when I was using the Tata Harper. That said, if you’re looking to add a spritz to your routine, this is worth a shot. It served me well for many years, especially paired with other Dermalogica products. Buy it now.

Pai Camellia and Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser

This cleanser made my 2017 Favourites and it looks like that won’t be changing in 2018. I tried to move on to other cleansers I had in the house when I ran out, but decided to reorder after a couple weeks of sad skin. If you’re looking for an emollient, nourishing cream cleanser, this is it. It’s perfect for a second cleanse (or morning cleanse) and I love the routine of using a flannel or muslin to remove it. Plus, the light camellia and rose scent is so luxe. Buy it now.

Glossier Priming Moisturizer

I wrote this moisturizer off pretty quickly after receiving it over the summer, but in the spirit of using up my product, recently reached for it again in December. If I’m being honest, Caroline Hirons uses and loves it so I decided to give it a fair trial. Layered over mist and serum, this moisturizer leaves my skin feeling hydrated and like all the layers I added before are safely ensconced beneath it.  It leaves my skin feeling dewy and happy and, most importantly, doesn’t cause my makeup to pill overtop. We’re back on the right track in our relationship and I re-upped in my next Glossier order. Buy it now.

Tata Harper Purifying Cleanser

The Tata Harper love is strong around here, in case you can’t tell. I finally used up this deluxe sample of the clay- and plant-based cleanser after reading about it on, yes, Caroline Hirons’ blog and it’s on my repurchase list. If you’re looking for your skin to feel really clean, this cleanser will certainly do the trick. I use it as a second cleanse or as a morning cleanse and find the scent to be really invigorating. It leaves my skin smooth, completely devoid of oil but also not tight at all. I did notice some purging while I used it but my skin wasn’t angry. Buy it now. (psst – if you want to experience her products in person, my go-to spot is Murale at Shops at Don Mills! Plus you can use your PC Optimum points to buy it. #protip) 

Clinique Moisture Surge Face Spray

Can you tell my product du jour is spritzes? I can’t get enough of sprays, especially now that I’ve realized how magical they are when you apply a serum right afterwards. Everything sinks right in so well and they add an extra layer of moisture. So important in a Canadian winter! This spray is very refreshing and perfect to keep at your desk. A word to the wise: it packs serious moisture and so I find it sits on top of my makeup a bit. But that doesn’t mean I spritz any less. I’m not rushing to repurchase it (eye on the Tata Harper prize!), but I’d consider rebuying. Buy it now.


MAC Fix Prep + Prime Fix+ Rose

If you thought you loved Fix+ before, the rose scent takes it up another level. This spray is perfect for priming your skin for makeup and, once you’ve got a full face on, for ‘melting’ the different layers together. I can’t describe it any other way – it just makes everything look like it’s part of your face. Spritzing your brush with Fix+ is also one of my favourite ways to amp up the shine and opacity of just about any shadow, too. The Coconut, Lavender and Rose scents are now permanent (!!!), meaning you won’t have to fight the masses for them anymore during a limited edition release. Buy it now.

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer

No explanation required here, other than this is still my HG concealer years in. I’m never without at least one tube started and at least one stashed away as backup. If you’re looking for the ultimate brightening concealer, this is the one. No holds barred. Buy it now. (and again, and again…)

NARS Pro-Prime Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base

Using a shadow base completely changed my eyeshadow game. Suddenly all those YouTube tutorials make sense because the colours pop and stay in place as you blend and smudge your way to gorgeous. Now, this primer definitely does the trick. But I’m not convinced enough to say it’s better than anything else I’ve tried. I’m still on the hunt for my HG primer, so let me know in the comments if you’ve found yours. Buy it now.


Living Proof Restore Instant Repair Lotion

This is my third bottle of this hair-taming lotion. I use it before blowdrying or styling to protect my hair and keep it free from frizz. There’s not much else to say outside of I’ve already purchased my next bottle (quite honestly, I’m never without it). Buy it now.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream

You know that feeling when you’re the last person on the planet to try something? No? Well that’s how I felt finally trying Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream. Less of a cream than a thick, emollient gel, the Eight Hour Cream was the answer to the driest of skin and roughest of patches. My work wife and I burned through the tube at rapid pace and both mourned the loss when we couldn’t squeeze out another drop. If you have dry skin or cuticles or just want to finally try this cult classic fix for pretty much any beauty woe, pick up a tube! You wont’ be sorry. And I need to repurchase. Buy it now.

Fresh Honeysuckle Moisturizing Hand Cream 

Tis the season of excessive lotioning. I loved this lotion for the gorgeous honeysuckle scent, pretty packaging and the fact that it sinks right in to the hands without any greasiness. I wouldn’t say I’m loyal to it, but I definitely couldn’t say no if I came across it while making my next beauty order. If you’re looking for a new luxe lotion, definitely give this one a try. Buy it now.

Chloe Roses De Chloe 

The original Chloe scent is one of my signatures, so it’s not a shock that I loved every drop of the Roses de Chloe formulation. A graceful, sophisticated fragrance, it’s fresh with notes of Damascena rose essence and magnolia accord. It dries down to Chloe’s signature white musk and amber. I likely won’t repurchase right away – another bottle of Coco Chanel Mademoiselle is in my future! – but it’ll definitely be on fragrance rotation soon. Buy it now. 

Lush Bath Oils + Bath Bombs

A bathroom without a secret stash of Lush bath bombs is a sad place – at least for me! Buying bath bombs wasn’t a priority in the last little bit, but nothing shakes off the dregs of winter quite like a luxurious bath (bombs + glossy mags required). I used two each of Lush’s new bath oils and bath bombs in January and can’t share the love enough. The new bath oils are excessively luxuriant, melting down into the most fragrant, softening bath. I tried Flower’s Barrow and Happy Thoughts. As for bath bombs, I picked up two previous favourites – Avobath + Twilight. Recommend!

Diptyque Roses Candle

My first Diptyque candle purchase was enough to make me a brand advocate for life. Listen, there are two kinds of people: those who crave and can justify a ridiculous candle purchase and those who could never. I’m solidly in the first camp (ever since my first Jo Malone) and will never go back. Yes, even if I used to tell my friend Rema she was nuts for purchasing them when we used to pop into Holts on our lunch break (I take it all back, Rema!). If you want to experience Diptyque, I recommend the mini trio that I picked up (Baies, Figuier + Roses). They’re even cute once they’re all used up for burnt matches, cotton pads, trinkets… Buy it now.

Whew, that was a lot of empties! Would you like to see more posts like this? Let me know in the comments below!