the Body Shop

Monthly Empties: October 2018

Monthly Empties: October 2018 | Writing Between Pauses

I always feel like I need to give my series of my monthly empties a clever name—but I can’t really think of anything particularly catchy. Plus, isn’t it just better sometimes to call a spade a spade? Here’s everything I used this month—no song and dance, just the basics.

October felt like a very long month. While I had fun doing Blogtober, it took a lot out of me and I felt very burnt out by the last day. In fact, I never wrote the post for Halloween; I figured I’d done 30 days, what was missing one? I was tired.

I’m even more tired now. I hate Daylight Savings anyway, but this past weekend, we fell back—usually, that’s an easier one to manage, but this past week has been pretty awful. Forrest has woken up every day around 3 or 4am, I’ve had stressful days at work, and I feel like I’ve fallen behind just about every single task in my life. (I have at least 5 loads of laundry I need to do.) But, I did also buy a couch over the weekend (which is big for us!) and I’ve been able to kind of turn my week around thankfully in a few small ways.

That’s just a very long-winded way to say: November has been a month so far, I’m excited for Forrest to start sleeping well again, and I really needed to put my Christmas stuff up this week so at least I had one good thing.

Now, here are my empties for this month:

1. The Body Shop Tea Tree Facial Wash

This is one of my favorite cleansers; I got this big bottle at Marshall’s for $9 (it’s normally around $17, I think). I also reviewed the matching mask here. This bottle lasted about 6 months, which is really good!

2. L’Oreal Pure-Clay Cleanser (sample)

I was surprised by how much I loved this cleanser. I actually bought a full size bottle this past weekend to replace this little sample. It’s absolutely a dream face wash: very cleansing, but not too drying; no overpowering scent. I highly recommend.

3. SOO AE Donkey Milk Overnight Masks

If you read my Ipsy review, you know that I liked these masks, but was disappointed that they are cheap, $1 masks you can get at Wal-Mart. I did like them, but they aren’t anything to write home about, really.

4. Sephora Green Tea Overnight Mask

I finally finished up this overnight face mask and goodness, I really loved it! I need to get to Sephora and buy some replacements. One mask lasted me about 9 nights, which is really good for $4.

5. Tarte Shape Tape

Tarte Shape Tape is one of those very divisive things in the beauty world: some people love it and some people hate it. I feel somewhere in the middle; it is a solid ok. Nothing to write home about, but it does in a pinch. I finally finished up the tube I bought in February or March, and I probably won’t repurchase.

6. Makeup Revolution Conceal & Define Concealer

This is another hyped up product that I feel very “meh” on. It’s not a horrible concealer, it’s not the best, it’s just… a concealer. I feel like all of MR’s colors are grey-tinted (or green-tinted) and they don’t look very flattering on my skin, at least. I used this tube very fast as well—maybe 2 months worth of use?

Beauty Review: The Body Shop Mint Mattifying Face Mist

Beauty Review: The Body Shop Mint Mattifying Mist | Writing Between Pauses

In my on-going struggle of having oily skin, which gets dehydrated and yet, somehow even more oily in extreme heat, I have a new product The Body Shop's Mint Mattifying Face Mist. I feel like I've written this in every review recently, but I impulse bought this face mist a few weeks ago because I had seen it in a few Instagram videos and wanted to try it. It's only $10 for a bottle which has so far lasted quite a long time--which isn't too bad, especially for a product from the Body Shop. 

So what does this face mist do? Let's check what they promise: 

This mist leaves skin looking mattified and shine-free and helps reduce the appearance of excess oil. Infused with a winning combination of mint from Nicaragua, seaweed extract from Ireland and kaolin clay from the UK. Leaves skin feeling hydrated and instantly refreshed.

It is also 100% vegan and can be used both over and under makeup. That's great! I'm very into that. 


This face mist smells amazing. It smells like Lifesaver Wint-o-Green mints, which is a plus. I love those mints. I usually use this after moisturizer and applying my first layer of powder, to really get my base matte before adding foundation or concealer (depending on what method I'm following). I then usually apply again after foundation, but before doing my blush and eye makeup. 

The reason for that is that I found this makes my eye makeup run really badly if it even gets anywhere near mascara. That's not a huge issue, but just something to consider before spraying this on!

I do find it helps smooth out my skin and powder before foundation. It doesn't make my foundation separate or go white or milky like some finishing sprays do, especially when applied after setting everything. I really love how it feels on my skin. However, I haven't found that it really mattifies in the way it says it does; I think it does help make a stickier base for foundation, but I don't find it really mattifying. 

I also don't feel like it necessarily increases the longevity of my makeup. I find I do still get quite oily after a few hours, regardless of whether I use this face mist or not; it does help set my foundation as a first step, but in terms of being long-wearing, it's not there. 

Final Thoughts

Is this product worth the $10 it costs? Probably not. It's quite nice for setting your base, but it doesn't help with the longevity of your makeup; it also doesn't appear to mattify in the way it claims (at least from my perspective). However, it is really refreshing and smells amazing, so it might be better suited to an on-the-go spray if you find yourself oily. I haven't tested it for that, but it would be worth a shot! (Just remember what I said about the mascara.)

Have you tried this face mist? What did you think?

Beauty Review: The Body Shop Tea Tree Mask

Beauty Review: The Body Shop Tea Tree Mask | Writing Between Pauses

If you've been reading my blog for any period of time, you know that I struggle with oily, acne-prone skin. I've found a routine that is relatively beneficial for my skin (it involves a lot of jojoba oil and a recent addition of rosehips oil). One of my favorite products is the Body Shop Tea Tree Face Wash

A few weeks ago, I had a 20% off coupon at Ulta. I was in one of those moods where I didn't really feel like buying makeup. I have my routine; I have the things I use; I didn't want new eyeshadows or anything. (This may be shocking, but I believe in not buying everything out there, you know!) I was wandering through the skincare aisle, spotted the Body Shop section, and thought, "Should I buy some more face wash?" Then my eyes fell on this mask. 

It was meant to be. 

At $17, the Body Shop Tea Tree Clay Mask is one of the most expensive masks I've ever bought. But at a total of 3.85 oz, it's not a use-once-and-toss mask; this little tub will last a pretty long while!

Here's what this mask promises: 

Cool and deeply cleanse your skin with our Tea Tree infused clay mask. Perfect for blemished complexions, the instantly cooling sensation refreshes skin, without over drying. This mask will help to clear impurities while absorbing excess sebum, leaving skin feeling smoother and clearer looking.

Like most clay masks, it promises to clean out your pores and tighten up your skin, which is always a plus. This mask contains menthol to cool down your skin (great if your skin is feeling particularly red and inflamed) and tea tree to heal blemishes.

(As a note, tea tree oil is best used in something, not plain, as it can burn your skin; a clay mask is perfect. But just a warning to never, ever put undiluted tea tree oil on your face!) 

How I Use It

The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Mask

I try to keep clay masks to a minimum as they can be quite drying. Naturally, my skin is dehydrated, which is why it gets so oily. I don't want to dry it out even more! I've been struggling lately with hormonal outbreaks, as I've fallen a bit off the bandwagon when it comes to dairy (did I not learn my lesson the first time!?). 

I usually apply this mask to my t-zone (forehead, nose, and chin), then on my cheeks. Sometimes, I pull it onto my neck and underneath my jaw, as I can get quite congested skin there. I use it twice a week, maximum, but usually just on Sunday evenings when I have the spare time and need it. 

My Results

This mask feels so cooling when it goes on--that's the menthol--and smells amazing from the tea tree oil. It can definitely feel a bit tightening when you first put it on, but as it dries, it feels quite good. More soothing than anything else. Afterwards, my skin always feels very smooth and clear and my pores look quite good. 

This mask is definitely best for helping heal active acne and preventing breakouts. It doesn't do much for older breakouts (like those awful cysts that in the process of healing), but it does help sooth that wrecked feeling skin. If you have inflammation, it can be helpful with that too; I always see a reduced amount of redness in the days after I use this mask and as I use it more frequently, those days last a bit longer each time. I can get quite red when my skin is dry or struggling, so that's a huge help! 

If you're in the market for a more high-quality mask, this is a great middle price option. As well, if you struggle with breaking out, inflamed or aggravated skin, or hormonal breakouts, this is a great mask to have in your arsenal to use!