Even though I think I have picked up quite a bit of blogging lingo over the years, some things will forever be alien to me. Like the term “branding”. Sure, I know what it means, but the first thing that comes to my mind is a cow getting marked with a red hot iron. Which maybe isn´t that far from reality, now that I think about it.
Or “Instagram theme”. Luckily that is already so 2016, with lot´s of big names telling us how liberating it is to no longer have one. Good thing I never figured out what mine would be, or I would have dozens of rainbow picture probs going to waste now.
If I look at my feed though I can´t help but notice that there is some repetition going on in my pictures. Not in terms of probs (I don´t use any) or background (most of the time it is my bathroom wall), but in terms of the things I take pictures of.
Because, believe it or not, the majority of my pictures is skincare routines. The real ones, the ones that I actually did put on my face, and as I am a huge fan of thoroughly testing a product, you will see the same pots and pumps over and over again. Boring? Maybe.
In every beauty lovers life comes the time when they really, really want to try a product, but simply can´t justify the spending. I have several pieces like that sitting on my Pinterest board, staring at me whenever I log in, reproachful, mournful, whispering antiaging promises I am not sure they are willing to keep.
And like the candle you save for a special occasion, you wait for the perfect opportunity to treat yourself. Yet that opportunity never comes, and you are left dreaming about what-ifs. What if I had started using it years ago and now looked like Giselle Bündchen, not like your average mama with too many sweets and too little sleep?
Enough of that! I thought as the offer for the Cult Beauty Spring Goodie Bag came in. I am going to buy one thing from my list. One thing that is expensive enough to single-handedly qualify me for a gift with purchase.
The first time I decided to treat myself to some special skincare was – you would not have guessed – in the Aldi checkout line. I was quite young, 21, and had a pretty basic routine mainly consisting of a foaming cleanser, an alcohol based toner and some Nivea moisturizer. While waiting in line to pay for my weekly groceries a set of anti-aging ampoules caught my eye. They were expensive (or what I considered expensive back then) and promised intense anti-aging benefits. I picked them up.
One word: Horrible. Way too rich for my skin, giving me breakouts and a day long greasy feeling. Needless to say I never touched ampoules again.
Until recently, that is. Now, 17 years later, they are back in my rotation. But before I talk about my experience with the M. Asam Dormacell Ampoule Beauty Treatment (PR-Sample) in detail, I will answer the most important question first: What is the difference between an ampoule and a serum and do I actually need them in my routine?
Well, an ampoule is basically a serum, but with a much higher concentration of the ingredients and, because they are individually packaged, less need for preservatives. Ampoules are great to use as a treatment when your skin needs a special something, whereas serums are your everyday workhorse. This is, of course, the theory, and as with anything beauty related, the label put on the bottle does not always reflect the product inside.
So how about the M. Asam Dormacell Ampoule Beauty Treatment (PR-Sample)?
Did you know that less than a third of my readers are German? The majority comes from the UK and the US. That kind of puts me in a dilemma:
I have some brand new, sparkling things from pixi to share with you in todays video. But they are only new in Germany, the UK has had them for quite a while now.
So do I title this post: pixi new releases and risk people from the UK thinking it was a click bait? Or do I title it pixi new releases Germany, risking only a third of my readers will be remotely interested?
The difficulties of “having your target audience in mind”, always among the top three of those annoying “How to succeed in blogging” posts that never really seem to help. Wonder how I know? Because I click them every time. So much for “I only blog for the fun and don´t care about numbers” *cough*
Anyway, I decided to stick with New In from pixi as title. Should work well enough.
You may have noticed that over the last few posts, I have changed my „ingredients“ setup quite a bit.
I tried typing things out in a continous text, focusing on the ingredients I thought important. Much more enjoyable to read, but too little information.
I tried listing every ingredient, sorted by “Favorable”, “Filler” and “Unfavorable”. Made the blog posts very long. Plus, I am still unsure what is supposed to be a filler ingredient?
And now, doing my very best venturing out into unknown html territory, trying to write out all the ingredients, but hiding them behind a click. That way the post looks less intimidating, but the information is still there for you if you want it.
So there you go: Instytutum Resurfacing Glow Toner (PR-Sample) – the third design attempt. And, funnily enough, my third daily glycolic acid to review on the blog (See number one here and number two here). If that isn´t coincidence!
Do you know what “bias” means? If you have worked in a scientific setting before, chances are you do.
But did you know that as bloggers we are bound to fall for it? I for one am guilty as charged.
Wait. Let me quickly rephrase that: “Guilty” is too harsh a word, and opposed to medical research a blog post is not likely to have a lasting impact on people’s health and well-being.
But despite all our “neutral and independent” claims, we might be falling for one bias or the other.
The “publication bias” is the one that I feel is the most common: You only publish what excites you or gives positive results. Because no one wants to read about a product that was straight boring and we want our blogs to be a happy place. Is that dangerous? Not really. But it prevents us from sharing helpful experiences that could someone else stop from buying.
And then the one that I did struggle with when reviewing the pixi Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse: The social bias. You see, I have been reading Caroline Hirons blog for ages. And after watching her vlogs (that never fail to make me laugh), she grew on me as a person. I enjoyed spending virtual time with her. She became a (very unilateral) online friend. So when she released a cleanser, I knew I had to buy it. And I was prepared to love it.
What I was not prepared for, what I simply did not WANT to happen, was that the pixi Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse would just be okay for me.
They say with little kids at home you are constantly sick. Now I am happy to report that this is absolutely not true for me, I rarely catch the kids bugs.
But in early March I came down with a cold, and it honestly was the worst cold I had in years. Coughing, sneezing and constantly blowing my nose. Pretty soon the skin around it was sore, red and full of dry patches.
I knew I had to exfoliate, but as someone who’s stash mainly consist of strong AHAs that sounded painful. The acid burn is real, people, especially if your skin is sore already.
Now thankfully I have everything and the kitchen sink in my beauty drawer, and a quick rummage brought the Aurelia Refine & Polish Miracle Balm to surface. Honestly the most gentle exfoliator I have used in years, getting rid of my dry patches in a heartbeat while soothing my sore skin!
For someone that went through adolescence before googling personal traits became the norm, trying to find a name or label for what you are could be a challenge. You see, these days I open my browser, type a few keyword and can take a test to tell me if I am intro-, extro- or ambivert.
My 14 year old self had to figure that out all alone. Is being around people invigorating or draining? Would I prefer to stay in or go out? You had to find out on your own.
Which wasn´t a problem. You didn´t really need to have a label anyway, you simply did what felt right.
I kind of picked up on the whole topic again when I read the Instytutum Cleansing Milk (*PR-Sample) press release, as they are quite specific to who this product is designed for: “For those who cherish the tranquility of single footprints in the sand, who revel in the serenity of a glittering lake high in the mountains and who find peace amidst the energy of a bustling city.”
I admit, after a busy day at work and the afternoon spend with two lively (let´s keep things positive here) children that was exactly what I was craving.
Do you remember me gushing about how I wished I lived in a country where winter meant real snow? Like Switzerland?
To be honest, I have rarely been in Switzerland in the winter, but I have been there quite a lot in the summer. It is a great place for hiking, and the green grass, the mountains and the abundance of crystal clear water running down the cracks are a refreshing sight.
This crystal clear water is what plays an important role in the products of the Swiss skin care brand Instytutum. Not water taken directly form a mountain stream though, but water they filter five times to achieve the purest version possible. On top of that they do support a charity (Waves for Water) that provides water filters for communities without access to clean water.
Quite frankly, I am not sure if I personally need the water used in my skincare to be filtered five times, but I love companies that try to give back to those in need and I was excited to have the opportunity to test a few products from their range.
Now you have already seen the Instytutum Anti-Wrinkle Brightening Serum * mentioned in my February favorites, but today you are going to get the full information about ingredients, effects and my final verdict.