Eight Disappointing Beauty Products that I Regret Buying
Bad beauty buys; yeah, they happen to all of us. We fall for the hype, we trust reviews, we trust our own research and instincts or we make an impulse buy, thinking that we are picking up just the right thing and it backfires on us. While I don't make a lot of bad beauty buys as I am pretty familiar with what usually works well for me and I try not to buy too many items on impulse, every now and again, a product that I thought was going to be so good turns around and bites me in the ass.
In this post, I'm sharing eight beauty products that were a disappointment to me and that I regret buying. If you're curious about what beauty goodies just didn't cut it, read on.
Now, before we get started I suppose that I should do the usual disclaimers that seem to go along with features like this one. First of all, my dissatisfaction with these products is based on my personal experience with them. I am not trashing these products or the brands that produce them, that is not what I do. I'm sharing why I didn't care for them and why they didn't work for me.
Second, if any or all of these products are much loved staples in your beauty arsenal, that is wonderful! Humans are very different and while I can have one experience with a product causing me to strongly dislike it, your own experience can be very different, causing you to fall in love with it. There is no right or wrong, here so please do not feel as if I am judging you or your taste, that is not what this is about.
Okay, now on with the show.
Let's start at the top with hair care. I have read blog posts and watched YouTube videos that waxed rhapsodic about Eva New York hair care products. They are touted to be hydrating, to make hair soft, shiny, easy to comb and brush and even feel stronger and experience less breakage as well as being great for colour treated hair. These are all things that I like from my hair care so I picked up the Mane Magic 10 - in - 1 Shampoo, Mane Magic 10 - in - 1 Conditioner and the Mane Magic 10 - in - 1 Primer and got to using them, hoping for the same results my fellow beauty enthusiasts were enjoying.
Yeah, no. That isn't what happened, at all. Rather than soft, shiny, bouncy, easy to brush and comb tresses, I ended up with dull, sticky, gunked up hair that dragged in my brush and comb and looked and felt heavy, dull and dirty. Okay not good. User error? Surely I used too much product, didn't manipulate it in my hair long enough or rinse thoroughly enough, right? So I changed up the amount of product, massaged them through my hair longer, rinsed more, used less leave in. Nope. My hair was still sticky and gunked up and my scalp itched like wildfire. The gunk was so bad that there would be thick, greasy, sticky grey-ish smears of it built up on my clean hair brush and on my shed hairs in the brush; big, thick flakes of gunk stuck to the strands. It was so gross. I used the trio a few times and my hair was so weighed down with heavy buildup that I had to clarify twice with the strongest SLS shampoo that I could get my hands on to get my hair clean. I don't know what made these products and my hair react so badly to each other but whatever it is, I had to write them off long before I used them up. They went into the round file.
I was in need of a new large paddle brush for blowing my hair dry and general brushing duties and I kind of got drawn in by how pretty the Conair Impressions Paddle Brush looked as well as my past positive experience with Conair brushes. While this brush isn't horrible, it's a typical plastic pin bristle on a flexible base paddle brush that usually does a good job on my hair. I was disappointed that the pretty pattern on the brush it's self is just a wrap and the handle, at the silver band is already working very loose and I don't expect it to last for much longer.
I got what I paid for. When I replace this brush, I'll make a better choice, even if it costs me significantly more money.
Next, we have the Bath & Body Works Rose Ultra Shea Body Cream and Fine Fragrance Mist. My gripe isn't with the quality or performance of the products. I like B&BW's Ultra Shea Body Cream and Fragrance mist. The body cream sinks in easily and is very hydrating and the fragrance mist is not only lovely sprayed on my skin and clothes, it makes a nice emergency room freshener, too. My issue is the name of this scent, "Rose". The notes are described as "...notes of airy rose water blended with jasmine petals and creamy musk". The reality of the scent is not even close. This fragrance is nice and I like what it is but rose, it ain't. I also don't get much jasmine or musk, for that matter. To me, this scent is fresh, a little green and the floral is light and sunshiny like meadow wildflowers but not a rose to be found. I'm using these up because they are good products but I won't be buying this scent, again and I would urge Bath & Body Works to reevaluate this scent and rename it. Because you know that they read here, looking for suggestions. Lesson learned. Sniff in person before ordering online.
During my long, oh-so-looooong, self imposed No Buy from Hell I had to economize in the extreme on what beauty products I did buy and that meant that treating myself to my favorite Shiseido Facial Cotton was out of the question. I did a little research to find a substitute and kept reading about how the CVS Beauty 360 Ultra Premium Cotton Squares were a dupe. Nope. Not even close. The CVS cotton squares were adequate, after a fashion but they shed fibers, pill and ball up and fall apart and I don't care what anyone says, they are not as soft as the Shiseido. As disappointed as I was with them, the CVS cotton squares were about the best I could find for my face, at the drugstore and I would buy them when they were on sale and I made them work until my No Buy ended and I could stock up on my favorite, once again.
You know, if you read here with any regularity that while I like fancy, spendy skin care as much as the next person, I am not a price point snob when it comes to caring for my complexion. I have a healthy mix of products that range in price from just a few dollars to many, many dollars more because in the end, experience, performance and results are what matter to me. I have had good luck buying serums from smaller, independent companies on Amazon so when I saw a listing for Eva Naturals Facelift in a Bottle 3 - in - 1 Anti Aging Set that contained a Vitamin C, Retinol and firming eye gel for under $25.00 I thought, why not? Let's give the brand a shot and see what we see?
What I saw was not much that made me happy. The Vitamin C serum was watery-thin, had pulp, kind of like orange juice in it and smelled like orange. Weird, but not off putting, really so I went for it. It sank in well and seemed to work fine but the liquid was problematic as I am a klutz and knocked the bottle over and spilled almost half of it out across my dressing table. Blech! I used it up, tho.
The Retinol serum didn't seem to be all that. While the label claims 2.5%, in reality the percentage of active Retinol is much lower and that is true in many skin care products so I had a reasonable expectation of what I was really getting. This serum was just... Okay. It applied okay but felt unusually sticky on my skin and I didn't feel anything from the Retinol in the formula. As long as I've been using that ingredient, I know what it feels like and I got nothing. I used most of this serum but when I picked up a new Retinol serum, I tossed what remained of this one in my empties bag, with it's friend, the Vitamin C bottle.
The Youth Restoring Eye Gel. It claims to wake up tired eyes, fight crows feet and reduce puffiness and dark circles. All this stuff did was terribly dehydrate the delicate skin around my eyes, leaving it looking and feeling ten years older. No way was I giving it a second chance and I rage threw this one into the trash, that night which is why you don't see it pictured here. I wasn't happy with this trio of products and I won't be going back for more from this brand.
I bought The Ordinary Niacinimide 10% + Zinc 1% Serum to help with some mild congestion in my pores in my T-Zone and to soothe the redness and light bumpiness on my upper chest. I thought that if the Vitamin B3 also helped my skin look and feel a little firmer, bonus! What I didn't count on was just how drying this serum would be. I know that Niacinimide and Zinc are good for treating acne and oiliness but I felt confident that as long as I used it with my usual hydrating products, my skin would be fine while reaping the benefits. That isn't what happened. This serum seriously dried my skin and left it tight, flaky and in need of a drastic exfoliation and remoisturization process.
The Ordinary Niacinimide and Zinc serum is not a "bad" product, it is just very, very wrong for my very, very dry skin. I'll have to find something else that can do the job and is more compatible with my skin type. If you have oily, acne prone skin, I suggest that you try this serum. It is less than six dollars for a one ounce bottle so you can't really lose, whether it works for you or not.
Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask was getting a lot of press. It was showing up on all of the who's who of blogs, in the YouTube videos of the "major" beauty influencers and the beautifully shot layouts in swanky magazines and all of that exposure as well as promises that it refreshes, rejuvenates, deeply hydrates and calms post long haul flight complexions - hence the name "Jet Lag" - and can be used as a moisturizer as well as a mask finally broke through my icy wall of resistance against it's rather formidable price point and when I made a recent Sephora order, I picked up the mini size. As you can see by the above photo, the mini is an impressive one ounce of product and was $25.00. Not too bad, especially if it lived up to all of it's high flying claims.
I'm glad that I bought the mini and didn't fork over the $48.00 for the full 2.25 oz size. Let me explain. The claims are truthful. First off, it doesn't take a lot of this product to do the job so a tube should last a good while. This mask is indeed deeply hydrating, it is gorgeously moisturizing whether it's used as a mask or as a mask/moisturizer hybrid. It is rejuvenating, comforting and refreshing. The refreshing is what turned out to be the problem, for me. This mask contains both corn mint and peppermint oils as well as lemon and lime fruit extracts which can be irritants to some skin types or, if you're like me and have extremely sensitive eyes, to your eyes.
The first time I tried this mask, I decided to use it as a mask/moisturizer and really put it through it's paces and while I loved how it makes my complexion look and feel, the "off gassing" of the minty oils are just too much for my peepers. After a while, the active irritation fades but toughing it out and leaving it on for the full 24 hour test took it's toll on my eyeballs. I will finish up this tube of product because I paid a pretty penny for it and it does work well as a mask that I brush on and cleanse away after a while but unless the formula is improved by removing the mint oils, I won't be buying it, again.
Okay, last one! I know... This has been long. Eight, yes eight reviews in one post!
I adore deeply hydrating hydro gel sheet masks. They stick to my face and drive their skin loving ingredients deep to leave my complexion feeling plumped, pampered, glowing and a little more youthful. What could be better? How about all of those benefits at a reasonable price point? Enter the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Hydro Gel Mask. The claims for this very affordable and easily accessed hydro gel mask are pretty impressive; promising to instantly quench while it deeply hydrates and leaves skin feeling supple and hydrated. Sadly, that wasn't my experience. This mask goes on dripping in what I hoped would be dry skin adoring serum. After a few minutes, it was completely dry, stuck to my face like a newly hatched alien and, contrary to the promises of quenched, plumped and hydrated skin my face felt sucked dry of it's very life force. This mask was a total fail, for me. It may be effective for younger, less dry complexions but I don't recommend it for dry skin.
I get this this was long. Really long. If this whole thing was a lot of TL/DR, these are not "bad" products but for various reasons, they did not work for me. Again, I don't hate any of the brands, I'm not telling you to not try them, as your experience may be very different. They just weren't right for me.
Have you had any major fails/beauty buy regrets? Please share in a comment, below.