Choosing Quality Over Quantity
It's been a long time since the contents of my beauty collection changed in any significant way. Generally I'm very pleased with the small selection of products that I now own, reaching for the same things every day and relying on them to do just the job I need them to. I still get take just as much interest in the industry as I ever did, yet my desire to own more has shrunk as I've got older. Where I was once proud to own hoards of products, my collection is more streamlined now that perhaps it's ever been. One foundation, one tinted moisturiser, one mascara. Over 10 concealers and countless lip products, but you can't have everything.
Cutting down my collection has forced me to focus more on the quality of the products than the quantity. It might sound obvious, but you're far less likely to spend out on products with very little background research when you don't already have a myriad of options to back them up with. Each and every purchase I make now is carefully considered. Where my bathroom shelves were once brimming with products that may or may not work for me, my aim now is to source things that really deliver on results - reducing the need for me to buy in excess.
It's one of a few reasons that things have been particularly quiet on my blog lately. For me, the blogging industry actively promotes excess, which becomes less and less appealing as time goes on. In the same way that I'm passionate about fashion but don't own a wardrobe full of designer pieces, I'm fascinated by the beauty industry but no longer feel the need to own a substantial amount of products in order to prove it. It's partly due to necessity - I've reached an age where I can think of a thousand better, albeit more boring, things to spend my money on. But it's also a matter of preference, a mindset that the blogging industry doesn't often recognise.
That said, I wanted to run through a few of the products that have made a real impression on me recently.
Davines are a brand that I still don't think get the praise they deserve, at least not in the UK. Their products are stocked by a growing number of retailers - my hair salon included - and for good reason. They're great. I'm a long time fan of their Your Hair Assistant range, which gives the hair a good clean without sacrificing any of the texture that I so painstakingly work to achieve. The VOLU shampoo is another fuss-free product that does exactly what it promises, giving my naturally limp hair a bit of lift straight from the shower. I avoid using heat wherever possible, so achieving any kind of volume needs to start as early on as washing - hence why I'm such a big fan of this.
If I could only choose one brand for fragrance and body care it would have to be Kiehl's. I've never been disappointed in a product of theirs, their perfumes in particular. I was gutted to hear that the brand were discontinuing their Aromatic Blends Fragrances, although I believe there are still a few lurking in stores (pick up Nashi Blossom & Pink Grapefruit in particular if you have a chance!). Their Original Musk range is still going strong though and is the perfect spicy unisex scent.
Although the whole premise of this post is about placing the quality of the product above all else, a lot can still be said for some appealing packaging. NIOD have the minimal aesthetic down - but not at the expense of what's inside. While the name is still a puzzle to me, Sanskrit Saponins is one of those rare skincare products that doesn't seem to bring any adverse effects. Having blemish-prone skin means that any change in my routine is taken with caution and finding something that I feel comfortable using day after day is rare. I still swear by the Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser, but adding this to my routine has allowed me to put more harsh exfoliators like the Kiehl's option on rotation. Sanskrit Saponins is a little more gentle and hydrating on the skin and, despite the horrible smell, seems to be doing just the job at the moment.