Sample Sized Beauty #1

15 September 2013

Whether they're gifts with purchases, beauty box extras or testers which I've requested, so often samples end up buried at the bottom of my 'to try' box. In an attempt to shake up my makeup bag a little, I've been challenging myself to make more use of these samples. Here is the first set of miniature reviews, for miniature products.

Taaj Hand Cream
I received this hand cream in a Jolie box, and didn't really give it much thought. However, I recently ran out of my favourite L'Occitane cream, and Soap & Glory's Hand Food wasn't really cutting the mustard. I found this sample in my stock and decided to give it a go. The basis of this hand cream is that it's formulated with water from the Himalayas, which was a bit of a selling point for me. It smells of a deliciously fresh combination of cinnamon and soap, which I've had half of my team at work sniffing. As far as hand creams go, this is a nice product. My cuticles look neater, and my hands don't feel as dry. However, I don't love this as much as my L'Occitane hand cream, so although I'll happily use this up, I won't be repurchasing it.

Benefit They're Real Mascara
This mini mascara was a freebie with Elle magazine back in May, and due to the hype around it, I expected to fall in love. Sadly, I really didn't get on with They're Real. It's a super black mascara, which I like, but I feel like it's too clumpy for me. This mascara gives plenty of volume, but it's lacking in the lengthening and defining departments. It's also incredible waterproof, so stubborn to remove. I'll use up this sample, but sadly it won't be a repurchase.

Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser
I got this little sample pot in the Sephora in Vegas back at the end of May, and I absolutely love it. I'm a big fan of Nars Sheer Glow, and this is just like a lighter version. For a tinted moisturiser it still has fairly good coverage, and isn't so dewy that I feel like the product is melting off my face. The wear time of this is a good six hours, the colour range is nice, and this is great as a day to day base. I'll definitely be purchasing a full size of this eventually.

Estee Lauder Invisible Fluid Foundation
I remember reading great reviews of this when it was first launched, and people saying that this was like one of my all time favourite foundations, Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua. It's a water based foundation, so you have to give it a good shake before use, but the finish of this is lovely. It's a light, buildable coverage, with a fresh, healthy finish. It sounds like the perfect foundation for me, but sadly it caused me to break out, so I won't be repurchasing this.

Alpha H Liquid Gold Smoothing & Perfecting Mask With Lavender 
I love my skin care. One thing I really slack at though, is face masks. I'm a massive fan of Liquid Gold, and received this sample in an Alpha H try me kit. I've got in to a routine of using this once a week, which I've done so for the last month, and still have loads left! This mask has a really strong lavender scent so beware if you don't like overly fragranced products, but I love lavender so it's all good. When I went through a breakout phase post EL foundation this really helped to calm things down, and I didn't experience any redness after use. Although I'm keen to try other masks too now, this is on my to purchase list!

Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch Primer
I've saved the best of the bunch 'til last with this one. I was slightly over-excited when the assistant gave me this little sample pot, as I'd heard such great things about this primer. I will definitely be purchasing a full sized pot of this, although I think this sample will last me for ages, as you only need the tiniest amount. Although this doesn't necessarily extend the longevity of my foundation loads, it gives me the perfect, soft base. My pores all but disappear, and I've actually taken to wearing this on it's own, because it just smooths out everything and makes your skin look like it's being focused on with soft lighting. I'd definitely recommend this primer!


  1. The Clarins primer sounds amazing, have heard such good things I might just pick up one out of curiousity! xx


  2. I haven't tried any Alpha H products before, but that mask sounds lovely. Lavender is such a relaxing scent. I've been wanting to pick up the Clarins primer for a while too, though I've fallen head over heels for a NARS luminising primer x

  3. Great review I have been eager to try the liquid gold for months now as it sounds incredible thanks for sharing your thoughts x

  4. Great post! I'm thinking of buying the Nars Tinted Moisturiser too. :)

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  5. I love getting samples before buying full-size, sounds like you saved some pennies! x

  6. I love getting samples to try and these look like good sized ones. That clarins primer sounds great

  7. I have a big box of 'to try' products. I should use them but I am pretty happy with what I am using at the moment. I also didn't get on with Benefit They're Real.



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