I had to make a quick mini-order at Sephora.com a few days ago to replace my much-used eyeshadow crease brush as I somehow lost mine and it’s one of those items that I use every single day — I was itching for the few days that I had to go without it. I ended up buying Hourglass’s Crease Brush and it works wonderfully. Then, of course, I added some other items that caught my eye to my online shopping cart (who can really only buy ONE thing at Sephora??), and this skincare set happened to be one of them.
I usually love the Sephora Favorites sets and I try to get them whenever a new one comes out (except for the perfumes — I have enough perfume samples from beauty boxes and through points prizes to last me well through the next 12 months, AT LEAST). I find that these kits far surpass their price as far as value goes; the products are usually great sizes (if not full-sized), and the items chosen are almost always the “best of the best” and work extremely well.
This kit is no exception and it contained a bunch of products that I have never tried before (but have been meaning to try for awhile) and it’s really a great mix of products that cater to a very broad group of different skin types. I guess a variety kit like this would be kind of pointless if people couldn’t use a lot of the products in it because of their specific skin type, so Sephora did a great job at including a range of products for everyday skin concerns (it’s a very good combination-type skin kit) with formulas gentle enough for those with sensitivity issues.
The major selling point for me, besides the fact that I could definitely put every item in this kit to use, is that each one of these items is fantastically formulated without parabens or sulfates.
The Sephora Favorites Skin Cleanse Vol. 2 Set Contains:
– Boscia Luminizing Black Mask (0.7 oz.)
– Dr. Brandt Pores No More Pore Refiner (0.25 oz.)
– Dr. Jart Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm SPF 25 (0.33 oz.)
– First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser With Red Clay (1 oz.)
– GLAMGLOW Super Mud Clearing Treatment (0.3 oz.)
– Kate Somerville Skincare ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment (0.5 oz.)
– Murad Oil-Control Mattifier SPF 15 PA++ (0.33 oz.)
– Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel (0.5 oz.)
– Peter Thomas Roth FirmX Peeling Gel (0.5 oz.)
All these items came packed into a black makeup bag that’s big and durable enough to hold a ton of full-sized products (pictured above).
I love Kate Somerville’s ExfoliKate Treatment and I actually just ran out of the tube (same size as this one — 0.5 oz.) that I received in a previous Sephora Favorites kit. This is actually a full-sized product, although it is the smallest size that you can buy it in. At $22 for 0.5 oz,, it is a bit pricey, but, if you want to try it out, then this is the size to try. If you happen to love it (and see noticeable results like I did), I would definitely splurge and go for the $85 2-oz. bottle. I personally don’t think it’s worth it to spend $175 on the even larger (5-oz.) size, especially because I wouldn’t use this product everyday, but hey, if you’re absolutely in love with it and have the extra cash to spend then you can own a whole 5-oz. tube of this stuff.
Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment (reg. $22-$175 for 0.5 oz.-5 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “dual-action exfoliation method” that works both physically and enzymatically to deliver “safe, dramatic results in one application.” This treatment is meant to combat acne and blackheads, reduce discoloration and polish skin for a smooth complexion.
I don’t really know how to describe how my skin felt/looked after using this product other than all-around healthy. It contains Salicylic Acid to hydrate (without over-drying); microbeads and fruit enzymes to clear out pores, remove dead skin cells and eliminate bacteria; Rosewood and Cinnamon extracts to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles; and Aloe Vera, honey and Vitamin E to smooth and soften skin. Kate Somerville also makes an ExfoliKate Gentle Exfoliating Treatment for more sensitive skin.
The next product is a black peel-off mask from Boscia. I own a similar mask from Julep (the Mask Noir) that I’ve hardly even tried since I got it, and I haven’t tried this Bosica mask yet either, so I have a feeling I’ll be putting one of them to use when I get home from class tonight.
Boscia Luminizing Black Mask (reg. $34 for 2.8 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “groundbreaking, mineral-rich mask that peels off to deliver powerful detoxifying, purifying and brightening effects.” This mask is made with a “premier-quality clay,” with deep-cleansing properties that draw out dirt and oil. It is also formulated with other natural ingredients to exfoliate skin and refine pores, as well as powerful antioxidants that shrink pores, firm skin and reduce inflammation. You apply the mask to clean, dry skin in an even layer and leave it on for about 15-20 minutes until it’s completely dry. Once it’s dry, you peel the mask off, along with “dead skin, impurities and excess oil.”
I love the way this eye gel looks and it definitely feels as good as it looks. Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel (reg. $38 for 1 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “dual-action cooling gel to visibly firm and de-puff fatigued eyes while you sleep.” I love Ole Henriksen products and I find that they work very well and feel great on my skin, plus the blue gel of this product looks (and feels) super cool.
This “unique gel-mask” contains calming calendula and cucumber that wraps the eye area, while a “gravity-defying complex of peptides infused with arginine visibly lifts and contours.” It is supposed to reduce the appearance of fine lines while revitalizing and brightening the eye area. I have only used this gel once so far, but it definitely felt wonderful on my skin.
The main reason I bought this Sephora Favorites kit was really for the GLAMGLOW Clearing Treatment. Of course I wanted to try out the other products that were new to me, plus there were some old favorites of mine mixed in there, but, more than any other product in here, I have been meaning to try a GLAMGLOW treatment for awhile now, and I have read such great things about them across the whole beauty review spectrum.
I saw instant results with this product — and that’s saying a lot because I hardly ever see instant results with skincare products. I have my tried-and-true staple skincare products that I buy over and over again, and then dozens upon dozens of samples that I receive, and out of these samples that I try it’s honestly very rare that I find one that I absolutely love like this GLAMGLOW treatment. To me, this product is well worth the full-size price of $69 (I would even pay way more than that) and I will be buying it as soon as this sample (which you can get a bunch of uses out of) runs out.
GLAMGLOW Super Mud Clearing Treatment (reg. $69 for 1.2 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “scientifically advanced SUPER-MUD clearing treatment to target, prevent and heal problem skin.” This formula was clinically developed by GLAMGLOW dermatological chemists to “help fight all common skin concerns including breakouts, discoloration, black and white heads, razor bumps and in-grown hair.”
You can actually see this stuff work in action: Dirt and congestion is drawn out by powerful, skin-clearing mud, and you will literally see GLAMGLOW’s “Pore Matrix” at work as it reveals dots of vacuum extractions. It is formulated with a “proprietary six-acid blend” to brighten and soften the skin, while “Activated-X Charcoal” magnetically draws out dirt and clears up pores. I have never seen such a noticeable difference in the look and feel of my skin so quickly after just one use of a product.
With all that being said, I guess the next product is a bit more boring (for lack of a better word?) in comparison to the GLAMGLOW treatment.
Murad Oil-Control Mattifier SPF 15 PA++ (reg. $39.50 for 1.7 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “shine-reducing moisturizer that controls oil for up to eight hours, decreases breakouts and protects skin.” My skin is a LOT more dry in the winter than it is during the rest of the year, and this cream felt almost more like a pore refiner than a moisturizer on my face, so I’m probably just going to leave this one in the bag until this dry-skin season is over (although my skin is never really “oily”). For those of you who do have more oily skin, this Murad moisturizer has been clinically proven to control oil for up to eight hours while effectively reducing breakouts, and it also regulates oil throughout the day.
I wish there was at least one more daily cleanser in this kit, but this one from First Aid Beauty is pretty good and it comes in a great size (a 1-oz. tube) for lots of uses. I never used this cleanser before buying the Sephora Favorites Skin Cleanse set, and I’m always happy to try out new products. I can’t really say that I have seen crazy noticeable results, but I only used this cleanser twice so far and both times I was just in too much of a rush (as per usual) to really take in the results.
First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser With Red Clay (reg. $24 for 4.7 oz.; sephora.com) is a gel facial cleanser meant to “detox, cleanse and unclog pores.” This foaming cleanser is formulated with a “powerful combination of red clay, rosemary leaf oil and botanical antioxidants” to remove excess oils, unclog pores and purify the skin.
This product is also formulated with clay, which is the magic ingredient that draws out toxins on the skin, while controlling outbreaks and even reducing the size of pores. This product is “perfect for anyone with problem-prone, combination, or oily skin or as a deep treatment cleanse for normal skin.” It really is an all-star cleanser for every skin type and it also does a good job at removing makeup.
The next product is Dr. Jart’s famous BB Cream. I have heard wonderful things about this BB Cream, but, like many of the other BB Creams on the market, this one just isn’t for me. This product is a true BB Cream, made in Korea, and it is way more in tune with the original Asian BB Creams than it is with some of their newer American counterparts. Personally, I love Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm because of its moisturizing and “glowing” properties (and the fact that it comes in a range of shades); the original BB Creams, on the other hand, are more like what you would see in Dr. Jart’s formula.
Dr. Jart Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm (reg. $36 for 1.5 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “purifying face cream that provides age defense, and hides uneven skintone and blemishes.” This “botanical formula” is formulated to “purify and calm blemish-prone or sensitive skin while also combating dark spots and pollutants for an enhanced radiance.” It comes in one universal shade and features SPF 25 sun protection.
As I said before, this is more of an “original” Beauty Balm, and actually made in Korea where the Beauty Balm craze originated (along with Japan), and pretty different than some of the American BB Creams that have been recently over-saturating the beauty market. I found this cream to have a matte-like feeling/texture, and while it is great for those with blemish-prone, oily skin, it might not be as great for people like me who have drier skin, especially in the winter time. Either way, this product has received rave reviews across the board, and if you want to try out a *REAL* BB Cream, I would definitely check this one out.
I kinda dropped the ball on the photo for these two — it was sooo late (3am maybe??) and I just wanted to get all the photos done so I could get this post up. Please, please excuse the poor photo quality!
To round up the Sephora Favorites Skin Cleanse Vol. 2 set, Sephora included a pore refiner with serious results, and a firming, peeling gel to unveil a fresher, smoother complexion.
Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Pore Refiner (reg. $45 for 1 oz.; sephora.com) is described as an “instantly effective, mattifying pore refiner” that “smooths and evens the skin’s texture, providing a matte finish with or without makeup.” It is formulated with infusions of microspheres and flaxseed to “effectively shrink pores, absorb oil and keep shine at bay.” I only tried this out once so far and I used it on my nose where my pores tend to be more visible, and it worked very well — I loved the silky feeling of this product.
What’s so great about it is that you can re-apply it throughout the day “as necessary” over makeup for a quick touch-up (although I wouldn’t necessarily re-apply it over the entire face, as that will probably mess up any blush/bronzer/highlighter application you got going on). This pore refiner can also be used as an “excellent makeup primer,” and I’m going to try it out as a primer today, especially after already witnessing how silky this stuff feels, and how it really did smooth out the skin around my nose area (where I tested it out).
The last product in this set is the Peter Thomas Roth FirmX Peeling Gel (reg. $48 for 3.4 oz.; sephora.com). I haven’t used this gel yet, but I find that Peter Thomas Roth skincare products always work very well, and this specific product received a nearly 5-star review on Sephora.com. It is described as a “peeling gel that visibly rolls, lifts and sweeps away dead skin cells when massaged onto skin.”
This peeling gel is formulated with multi-action enzymes (pineapple, pomegranate and keratinase) and cellulose, to “effectively peel and help uncover a smooth, fresh, new complexion without drying, irritating or causing undue stress to skin.” This product will also remove impurities and unclog pores for a “youthful, radiant look.”
The Sephora Favorites Skin Cleanse Vol. 2 skincare set is available in Sephora stores and online at Sephora.com for a limited time. The set costs $45 (and is valued at $112).