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FAB FIVE - From Deluxe size to Full Size - Vol. 1

I am a self proclaimed deluxe size/mini size/sample junkie! I am one of those people who will place an order because the deluxe samples offered were amazing!  Sephora Favorites (curated set of trial size products) are probably my favorite kind of sets offered at Sephora. The deluxe samples are generous enough to give a good idea about the texture and scent of the products before committing to a full size one. Not all products will give complete idea about the performance or results on skin but it does gives an idea if any ingredient is causing reaction or the scent is not acceptable and so on.

I have found some amazing holy grail skincare products of mine using one of these samples. Here's the list of Fabulous Five Products that I purchased in full size after trying their Deluxe samples.

I had a mini of this for the longest time and it lay there sitting somewhere in one of the boxes, before I actually started using it. I regret not using it earlier. This stuff is fantastic. It is a water activated cleanser/exfoliator. It instantly brightens the face, giving it a very visible radiance and glow. It evens the skin tone beautifully. Does not stings or irritates. This is one of the most user friendly enzyme peels out there. Has a perfume scent to it that does not bothers me at all. 

It contains:
Papain, a papaya-based enzyme that works to exfoliate the skin without causing irritation.
Allantoin that Calms and soothes the skin
Green Tea Leaf Extract, an antioxidant that protects the skin from free radical damage. (source).
It is so gentle that I use it everyday. Good stuff. 

Let us just start by saying that this is 'comfort food for my skin'
It is one of those soothing, repairing kind of creams in my skincare collection that I come back to whenever I have a bad skin day. It all started during one weekend road trip where I had a tiny sample of this cream and it made my rough, dry, bumpy and tired skin super soft, smooth and almost free of any bumps and flakiness. It repairs even the microscopic tear that I have on the skin, making it so much more plump and even textured. As a blogger, I tend to try many new products on my face and sometimes things just don't work. This soothing cream always helps to repair the mess made on my skin every single time. Love it!!

It contains:
Ceramide NP that provides time-release moisture.
Licorice Root Extract that Soothes and provides anti-redness properties.
Portulaca Oleracea and Aloe Vera that Calms irritated skin and hydrates.
Panthenol that alleviates signs of sensitivity and softens skin. (source)
Celebrity makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury can sell anything to me with her product names. Often over used words like Flawless, Glow, Magic, Goddess etc messes up with my brain and  just sucks me into believing that I can get that same glow if I use those products. Apparently, Magic cream was one such product that was the most mysterious in her line. I was so intrigued by it that I really wanted to try it out myself and see what magic does this secret blend does. I placed a big order just to get a deluxe size cream jar and I am so happy to report that it did not disappoint. It is a thick cream, that moisturizes, hydrates and plumps the skin, creating a flawless base for makeup application. It literally fixes any dry patches on my skin and I can easily skip the primer. The foundation goes on smoothly. It has a SPF 15, very perfect for day time. 

It contains:
Hyaluronic Acid: Plumps the skin with moisture.
Rosehip Oil, Camellia Oil, and Antioxidant Vitamin E: Hydrate and promote youthful-looking skin.
BioNymph Peptide Complex: Multitasking anti-aging ingredient.
Damask Rose Water and Organic Aloe Vera: Regenerate skin (Source)

As far as the texture is concerned, this is not a very unique one. It is on thicker side. It contains a bunch of good oils. I think it is the Hyaluronic Acid that does the trick. I love how it plumps my skin and makes it appear very healthy, glowy and even in texture. Needless to say, the brand got my $100 and I got their big jar of cream.

I have had my fair share of failures with acids and actives. The thing with products that contain acids are either they work excellent or they just ruin the skin. There is no in-between (at least in my case)
So if you see tons of negative review for any active or acids, just ask for sample and give it try before completely dropping the idea.
I picked a small trial pack of this product and luckily the whole composition and combination worked for me. It contains 15% L-ascorbic acid plus Ferulic acid and 1% vitamin E along with Pumpkin Ferment and Pomegranate Extract. 
It did not dry out my skin nor I had any breakouts. The face appears bright and glowing and with regular usage, the hyper pigmented marks on my face have considerably reduced. I use it as a part of my night time skincare routine thrice a week (early days) and currently twice a week.

Also contains:
Chronocyclin: Optimizes skin for a more youthful-looking complexion.
Pumpkin Ferment and Pomegranate Extract: Work together to enzymatically dissolve dead surface skin cells, minimizing the appearance of pores
Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer: Is able to penetrate skin deeply to deliver excellent hydration, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, while promoting firmness.(Source)

I know physical exfoliators are not good and they harm the skin etc etc. but I am pretty old school and my face loves an occasional good scrub! Laura Mercier Flawless Skin face polish is a fine scrub with very tiny granules, that are not too abrasive, yet exfoliates gently by removing all the dead cells. I use this once or twice a week and make sure to be very gentle with it. It leaves the face visible smooth and soft. I find scrubs to be particularly useful when I am on road trips. Not only does it cleans the pores well, but makes my skin smooth and soft. Also, I don't have to worry about photo sensitivity on the go, like I do when I use chemical exfoliators. Do remember to close the eyes snap shut till every bit of the scrub is rinsed off the face, because if it gets into the eyes, the gritty feeling it leaves behind is just nightmare! Of all the ones I have tried, this is the best! All thanks to tiny sample! 

There are more such products that have attained their place in my vanity all thanks to tiny deluxe samples and I will share them in coming months. I think the companies need to be generous with their trial samples and offer deluxe sizes instead of foil samples. 

Have you discovered any gems after using tiny samples? Have they attained Holy Grail status yet?

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