The Do-Not-Buy List Vol. 2

The Do-Not-Buy 2

Here we go again! I’ve thought long and hard and come up with a few more products that I just cannot recommend. This time, it’s super focused on body and skin care. This is because I tend to research makeup products heavily before I purchase them, so I tend to like them.

The first product I really did not like was Bioré Pore Strips, particularly for the nose. I get clogged pores on my nose, and when I was younger, I bought these all the time, desperate to get rid of them. I would get pretty good results with this; my nose would be clog-free for a few days. However, my nose would always get super itchy afterwards, but I thought this was normal. I was using them with a friend once and she didn’t get the itchy nose. It was then that I realized I was probably having a minor allergic reaction to the glue in them, so I stopped using them. I’d recommend making your own natural ‘paint on’ pore strips with gelatin and milk, or using Origins’ Clear Improvement Mask. Much gentler on the skin!

Next up is the first cleanser I purchased while trying to get into higher quality skin products: Ole Henriksen’s On The Go Cleanser. I bought this on the recommendation of a Sephora employee. It smells absolutely amazing, like freshly cut oranges. However, it’s a gel cleanser, which I now know tends to be too stripping for my skin. After using it for a few months, my skin would burn when I went to tone and apply moisturizer. If you have oily skin this might work for you, and I would recommend giving it a good long test if you decide to try it (try to get a few samples!).

I was so disappointed in Vaseline Spray & Go. The premise is that it’s Vaseline body lotion that you can spray on, rub in real quick, and it absorbs virtually instantly. I’ve tried so hard to make this work for me, but it just doesn’t do anything for my skin. I’ll admit that my skin tends to be very dry during the winter. However, when I put this on, it’s like I didn’t put any lotion on at all. It absorbs quickly alright, but a few hours later my legs look and feel super dry. I’m going to give this another try in the summer when my skin isn’t in such desperate need of hydration!

Similarly, this Bath and Body Works body lotion is an inadequate moisturizer. I bought a mini of it just before Christmas because I absolutely love the Twisted Peppermint scent. I only went with a mini because I figured I’d only really want to use it two months out of the year, if that. It smells lovely and the scent lingers after application; I just wish the moisture did, too!

When it comes to mascara, I acknowledge that there may not be one out there that does everything (length, volume, separation) perfectly well; however, Maybelline Volum’Express Cat Eyes didn’t do anything. My lashes still looked thin, short, and stumpy, but with added clumps. No thank you! (I guess that’s what I get when I buy a mascara based exclusively on its name and my love of cats.)

Finally, my biggest disappointment is Ipsy and Ipsy-like services. For those of you who don’t know, Ipsy is a curated beauty box service, and it’s one of many on the market. You pay $15-ish per month and you get 5 or so “deluxe samples” chosen specifically for you and sent to your door. I was so excited to try these services! I started out with Glymm, which has since gone out of business. I didn’t actually like a single one of the products they sent me. I stuck with it for three months or so before writing in to complain. They offered to send me an extra treat in my next box to try to keep me as a customer. The extra treat was a drugstore lip balm. I cancelled that subscription.

Next I tried Ipsy because it seemed to get a lot of positive reviews online. It’s represented (or run?) by Michelle Phan, Promise Tamang and other popular YouTubers, so I hoped it would be better than Glymm. Nope. I ended up with a lot of very cheap samples that I had no interest in, which makes sense in a way. If they’re going to turn a profit while only getting $15 from each member per month, they have to assemble the beauty box at as little cost to them as possible. Nonetheless, they advertised deluxe samples, but I ended up with a whole lot of Yaby, Be a Bombshell, Sation, and brands I had never even heard of but were similarly cheap. It felt like they were just filling the bags with random stuff (which they probably were).

In the end, I decided that beauty boxes just aren’t worth the risk, and I’d rather save my $15 per month to get a full sized product of something I really want.



  1. Too bad about the curated beauty boxes 😦
    But good to know!!

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