If you’re familiar with The Minimalists, you’ll know they’re all about keeping hold of what ‘adds value’ to your life and letting go of the rest.
But if you have a pile of unopened cosmetics, how do you know what will add value and what won’t?
I’ve been turning that question into a bit of a game for the past few months, by testing out what really works for me and what is a waste of space, literally. In the name of scientific rigour, I’ve been applying products to one side of my face or body, and seeing whether my wife, Ruth, can guess which is which.
The results of round three are in:
Product: Neal’s Yard Geranium and Orange Hand Cream
First impressions: Putting hand cream on one hand but not the other is harder than it sounds. In case you’re wondering, I have had to get my feet involved. The cream itself was really thick and smelled great.
Results: You know what, I’m actually pretty convinced this has done something. The hand getting treatment looks smoother than the other, with fewer fine lines on the back.
Did Ruth guess right?: She did indeed, as did my unsuspecting sister when I quizzed her.
The winner: High-maintenance. I might even go so far as to say this may be the best product I’ve reviewed to date.
Product: Ragdale Hall body scrub
First impressions: Fancy, fancy, fancy. This is from a fancy spa that some of my family have visited before, and it’s now getting its products onto the high street. The packaging was fancy-pants and the scrub even contained mother-of-pearl. See, told you it was fancy.
Results: It smelled good. The moisturising effect was quite noticeable, but the exfoliating effect was less so. I’ve found exfoliating mitts and loofahs to be more effective. I’m not sure if it’s a coincidence, but the plughole in the shower seemed to drain slower when I’d been using this.
Did Ruth guess right?: Sadly, no. She had no idea.
The winner: Low-maintenance. It’s all used up now, which is kind of a shame because it lent our bathroom a distinct air of fanciness.
Product: Radial Super Acids X-treme Acid Rush Peel
First impressions: Hmm, I really wasn’t sure about this. The bottle is lime green and has words like ‘acid’, and ‘X-treme’ on it. I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to slather my face with anything that spelled ‘extreme’ like that.
Results: To my relief, this did not make my flesh melt off like that fella in Indiana Jones who drinks from the wrong Holy Grail. It smelled fruity and looked like a pretty innocuous, even watery, see-through liquid. However, I’m not sure it’s done much, to be honest.
Did Ruth guess right: She had no clue.
The winner: Low-maintenance.
Product: Korres Guava Lip Butter
First impressions: Nice, pared-down packaging suggests it does what it says on the tin.
Results: I dismissed the idea of testing it on either the top or bottom lip (I literally wouldn’t be able to shut my cake-hole if I’d gone down this route) and instead went for applying it to the right side of both my top and bottom lip. Once the product was applied, my lips remained well lubricated (stop giggling in the back) until about lunchtime.
Did Ruth guess right?: Nope, but then she said I should be testing out lip balm in winter, really, which was a fair point.
The winner: A draw. Maybe a test to come back to.
Overall winner: Neal’s Yard Geranium and Orange Hand Cream
Round four coming soon!
If you like what you read, subscribe to Want Less via the arrow at the top of the page, follow Claire on social media using the buttons under the title or leave a comment below. Also, feel free to check out Claire’s other site, Simplicity Voices.