This new segment “Samples Saved Me” will give you the lowdown why I won’t be buying full-sized version of the products I’ve tried, thanks to beauty samples I received as “freebies” from my various purchases here and there. Needless to say, everything is based solely from my experience, my genetic predisposition, subjective rants, and objective facts. If the products I mentioned worked out for you, hallelujah! if not, welcome to the club. So in no random order, here they are:
1) Dr. Brandt BB Cream with Signature Flexitone (full size 1 oz, $39)
Claims: self-adjusting flawless coverage, anti-aging, brightening, broad spectrum spf 30
Why I didn’t like it: this is sunscreen disguised as BB cream. The typical sunscreen scent is more than enough to turn me off, it’s so strong and it lingers for hours (read: morning to afternoon). It oxidized on me big time and it made my skin look awfully greasy after 3 hours. This is the makeup you shouldn’t be wearing on your first date or God forbid, near someone; the scent alone is utter annoyance.
2) Josie Maran Argan Black Oil Mascara (full size 0.27 oz, $22)
Claims: Argan oil mascara that nourishes, lengthens, volumes and curls lashes for 24 hrs.
Why I didn’t like it: I’m looking past the 24 hr-claim because who wears mascara that long? The formula was initially wet then it became muddy after few uses. It smudged and budged leaving me with embarrassing black stains under my eyes. Between moisturizing my lashes with organ oil and mascara stains, I’d rather have none.
3) Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector (full size 1 oz, $49.50)
Claims: oil-free hydrating cream that visibly lightens dark undereyes
Why I didn’t like it: It’s another tinted moisturizer that does nothing beyond hydration. Just so you know, I received several deluxe-size samples of this corrector so I got to try it for a month. Unfortunately, it did nothing to correct my dark circles. Aging and genes are some of the underlying causes of dark undereyes so I’ve come to a conclusion that since I’m so stingy to pay for expensive cosmetic procedures then I’m better off using a concealer to camouflage the haggardness of it all.
4) Stila CC Cream (full size 1.3 oz, $44)
Claims: skincare meets cosmetics offering the ultimate color correction while creating a natural-looking flawless complexion.
Why I didn’t like it: I don’t have perfect skin so I’m not even looking for flawless results. The shade “medium” is gray from the tube but once blended onto the skin, it’s supposed to adjust to my real skin color. Sadly, it didn’t adapt well because I looked ashy and overall unappealing.
5) Mary Kay True Dimension Lipstick Color Me Coral (full size $18). Technically this isn’t a sample but I won it from Influenster contest and since it wasn’t a byproduct of a purchase, we’ll categorize it that way oki?
Claims: instantly drenches lips in moisture and locks it in for endless comfort
Why I didn’t like it: it feels heavy and oily on my lips, it settled into lip lines and has a very weird plastic scent.
Brand Marketing 101 disguised as moral lession. One cannot underestimate the power of fragrance in a consumer’s buying decision, whether it’s impulse or premeditated. Either you make it fragrance-free or delightful to the olfactory nerves. It’s not that hard to sniff and evaluate. Scent is relative, others like floral or citrus but I don’t know of anyone who enjoys plastic, chemical or rancid odor. Also, the role of samples is to lure you to buying full-sized products so first impression does count! Common sense, why would I insist on buying a product that I didn’t like from the start?
So there….samples saved me, my wallet thanked me, in the end I’m happy!