When I first discovered subscription boxes a few years ago, I instantly became obsessed — I had to have them all. I subscribed to as many as I could and I stayed subscribed to a bunch of them for awhile.
Then, over the last year or so, I decided that I really didn’t need all of these subscriptions anymore; I was receiving a LOT of repeat products, and I just couldn’t justify spending all this money every month for subscription boxes that I really didn’t have much use for. So I suspended or completely cancelled many of my subscriptions, but there were a few that I absolutely loved and needed to keep … Julep Maven was one of the keepers.
Julep Maven was one of the first subscription boxes I ever received, and I’ve been with the service now pretty much since it began. Julep is constantly releasing new nail colors and new beauty products, so I don’t have to worry about always getting duplicate items like I was with a lot of the other beauty boxes.
I absolutely love many of Julep’s beauty products and I’m always super excited to see the new collection revealed on the 20th of every month. I also love the fact that Julep gives you the freedom of being able to skip any month you don’t want. This weighed in heavily when I was deciding which subscription boxes to keep and which ones to get rid of.
Julep Mighty Nail and Cuticle Serum, $28 ($22.40 Maven price)
For the month of March, Julep released a new cuticle oil/serum: Julep Mighty Nail and Cuticle Serum ($28 regularly; $22.40 for Maven subscribers). I have been using regular Argan oil on my cuticles, so I was kind of in the market for a new product. My cuticles really dry out during the wintertime, and I still haven’t totally kicked my cuticle-biting habit, so I really needed a multi-tasking product specifically formulated to whip my cuticles back into shape.
Julep’s new nail and cuticle serum promises to transform dry and damaged cuticles “almost overnight” and deliver “stronger, smoother nails with fewer ridges, less splitting and brittleness in just 2-3 weeks.” I have only used this serum once since I received it last week, but I already notice a difference: my cuticles look and feel a LOT softer and smoother.
I know I’m not the only one to notice such a big difference overnight — many reviewers on Julep.com said pretty much the same thing. I am really looking forward to using this serum more over the next few weeks and hopefully seeing a big difference in the overall appearance of both my cuticles and my nails.
Julep Nail Color in “Lara” (top) and “Jyliana” (bottom)
I had enough points (Jules) saved up to receive a free Maven box this month, so I decided to go with the basic box instead of getting a bunch of add-ons, and I was really happy because I didn’t have to pay a penny. The regular boxes usually include one beauty product and two new nail colors, and then you can add-on as many products as you’d like after that for a cheaper price. If you add-on three or more items, Julep will throw in a free gift (or gifts).
Julep’s Jules rewards program is pretty awesome, and it’s extremely easy to save up points just by taking your Maven box each month. I think I skipped maybe one box over the last 12 months and I’m pretty sure that this is the second free box I received this year. I also made one or two small orders on Julep.com outside of the monthly Maven box, so that helped in accumulating Jules (rewards points), but it’s still very easy to save up points towards a free box even when you’re not placing extra orders.
Julep Nail Color in “Jyliana”, $14 ($11.20 Maven price)
Julep’s March nail collection was themed around “soft, serene shades.” I decided to go with a pretty, glossy teal hue, and a full-coverage, soft lilac shimmer.
Julep Nail Color in Jyliana ($14 regularly; $11.20 for Maven subscribers) is described as a “Smoky Jade Crème.” It is a full-coverage shade that goes on smooth and stays put, formulated with Julep’s 5-Free Oxygen technology. Julep’s nail colors also include strengthening Hexanal and antioxidant green coffee extract for healthier nails.
Julep Nail Color in “Lara” ($14 regularly, $11.20 for Maven subscribers)
Julep Nail Color in Lara ($14 regularly; $11.20 for Maven subscribers) is described as a “shell pink with gold shimmer.” I think this color is a little more on the lilac side than pink, but either way it’s really gorgeous and very unlike any color I already own. This shade looks very light and sheer-like in the bottle, so I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is, in fact, a full-coverage shade. A perfect nail color to call in the beginning of spring!
Julep Maven is a customizable nail and beauty subscription box that starts at $24.99 per month or $19.99 per month with a three-month prepaid subscription. There are options to add-on more products each month for a higher cost. To subscribe click here, or head over to Julep.com for more information.
I, like most beauty junkies out there, definitely have a huge Sephora obsession that I came to terms with long ago … Every time I see a new product I must have it, and every time I run out of a product that I use every day and go to order a new one I always end up buying a bunch of other stuff that I may or may not actually need.
So anyway, my latest Sephora haul is actually two purchases that I made back to back on Sephora.com over the last week. I decided to put everything into one post to make it easier … also one of the orders didn’t exactly look like a “haul” since it was only a few products, so I added them together to make it look like more of a “haul.” I’m going to review most of these products in individual posts but here is a little overview of the items I picked up … !
I picked up this new shadow palette by Smashbox a couple of months ago and I am (finally!) getting around to reviewing it now. I really have soooo many posts to write up, piles of makeup sitting on my floor and lots of other photos and goodies to blog about — I have lots and lots of free time over the next few days (YAY!), so I’m going to try to catch up on blogging as much as I can!
I’ve been meaning to do the second post in my Sephora Summer Haul series for a few weeks, but I’ve been pretty busy so I’m just getting around to it now. I did the Sephora Summer Haul #1 post a little over a month ago, and then I went back to the store and bought even more stuff.
I pretty much did an OVERhaul of my beauty collection this summer, mostly because my skin is a lot different than it used to be, and I really did need a whole new routine and new products that are better suited for my skin, which has changed over the last year to a more dry and sensitive type.
Of course I can never just buy the items that I need and everytime I go into Sephora or even shop online at Sephora.com I end up with a crapload of stuff. So, besides just the new skincare products, I also bought a bunch of summer-y items, from makeup in bright colors to products that will help me keep my makeup on and looking fresh even in this hot, and often humid, New York weather. I’m not going to go too in-depth with the products because I’ll review most of them in posts of their own.
Josie Maran Argan High Gloss Lip Quench
It seems as though this lip gloss from Josie Maran is no longer available at Sephora.com for some reason. I tried to look online to see if it’s being discontinued or if there’s going to be a new product to take its place but I couldn’t find any information. However, it IS still available on the Josie Maran website.
I have super chapped lips because I bite them way too much (so attractive, I know), so I decided to try this one out since it’s infused with Josie’s signature Argan Oil blend and it got pretty good reviews on the Sephora website (when it was still available). This isn’t exactly for healing lips, but I did notice some good results in the overall appearance of my lips and they were a lot smoother. This one is a little sticky at first, but the stickiness doesn’t really last that long.
Josie Maran Argan High Gloss Lip Quench ($16 for 0.3 oz.; josiemarancosmetics.com) is described as a “deeply penetrating” moisture gloss that “primes lips for a feather-free, even application of lipstick, liner or stain.” You can wear it alone, under or over lip color (I usually just wear it alone) and it is infused with 100% Pure Argan Oil, as well as jojoba oil and oleic-acid-rich buriti oil for “deep skin renewal and conditioning.”
HUM Nutrition Runway Ready
I am definitely going to be reviewing these vitamin packs from HUM in a separate product review post because they really have been doing a lot as far as strengthening my hair and nails goes. My skin has even been clearing up, my nails are definitely stronger and my hair even looks a lot better and healthier (although I am in desperate need of a trim). You have to use these vitamins consistently for at least a couple of weeks before you see real results and I’m just about ready for Month 2 of my Runway Ready regimen (I have a new box sitting in my cabinet). I have no doubt that everything is going to start looking even better once I start the second month.
DISCLAIMER: I don’t really believe in multivitamins and most regular vitamin supplements (except for some circumstances and some formulas). I really think that getting all the right vitamins I need comes from good food and good eating habits, so I don’t necessarily buy into the whole vitamin craze. THESE vitamins, however, contain a 100% vegetarian formula and great ingredients (that are regularly found in foods) to insure that you get a super awesome dose of the vitamins necessary for strong nails, healthy hair and clear, vibrant skin.
HUM Nutrition Runway Ready ($35 for 30 daily packs; sephora.com) is a month-long supply of HUM’s Red Carpet and Killer Nails formulas. The vegetarian Red Carpet formula includes the “perfect balance” of GLA, ALA and Vitamin E. It is made from bio-available nutrients from black currant and sunflower seeds with healthy essential fats that support “fuller, shinier hair and glowing skin.”
The key ingredient in Killer Nails is biotin, a water-soluble B-complex vitamin necessary for cell growth and the production and metabolism of fat into amino acids. Killer Nails is a high potency vegan formula that contains 5000 mcg of Biotin, which is “widely used for strong nails and hair.”
Each Runway Ready pack contains two Red Carpet pills and one Killer Nails pill.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lotion
A brand-new moisturizer was one of the most important elements to my new skincare routine and this amazing moisturizer right here immediately made a huge difference in hydrating my dry skin. I had originally sampled the Ultra Repair Cream by First Aid Beauty and I loved it so I meant to pick that one up, but I put the Ultra Repair Lotion in my online shopping cart instead. It is essentially the same formula, just with a lighter consistency. I like the Cream a bit better so I’m going to make sure I pick that one up when I run out of this one.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lotion ($28 for 8 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “refreshingly lightweight moisturizer for silky smooth skin.” It is clinically proven to deliver 24 hours of continuous hydration, eliminate flakiness and condition the skin, leaving it “silky, supple and smooth.” It also treats itching and irritation caused by eczema, bug bites and rashes, so it can be used all over your body — not just the face!
Fresh Soy Face Cleanser
Another super awesome product that I’m surprised I just started using now is this best-selling cleanser from Fresh. My face is soooo CLEAN after I use it — it removes pretty much every last trace of makeup (even mascara) and my skin feels and looks so much better now that I’ve been using it religiously for about a month. I bought this smaller tube first to really try it out and then I ran out of it pretty quickly so I recently bought the larger, 5.1-oz. tube. The larger tube is part of the third Sephora haul in my summer haul series 🙂
Fresh Soy Face Cleanser ($15 for 1.7 oz. [pictured] or $38 for 5.1 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “multitasking gel that gently removes impurities and makeup.” It instantly whisks away everyday impurities and makeup — even mascara — without stripping the skin of essential moisture, and it is rich in amino acids and soy proteins to support moisture retention. It also contains rosewater to balance and tone skin, as well as cucumber extract and nourishing borage seed oil.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in “Captivating” (warm peach)
I have this blush in a few other colors, but the peach looked so pretty and exactly what I was looking for so I had to pick it up. I want to do a full review on this product because the packaging is so pretty and I got a bunch of great photos; this haul post was already really photo-heavy so I only used one photo of the blush.
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush ($26 for 0.2 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “long-wearing, solar-baked blush” that lasts up to 12 hours. This blush is infused with natural clay “harvested from the banks of the Amazon River and naturally baked by the sun” and it is rich in nutrients that benefit all skin types for a “fade-free flawless finish.” I chose the “Captivating” shade, which is described as a warm peach.
Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk Intensive Hydrating Treatment
This was another skincare product that I recently added to my daily routine that has helped my skin get back to a more normal state. I put this treatment on every night (usually during the daytime, too) and it has done wonders for my dry skin, making it feel and look so much more hydrated, soft and smooth. Over the last couple of days I started using Josie’s Argan Oil Light over this treatment at night instead of my moisturizer and I’m loving the results. During the day I apply my First Aid Beauty moisturizer over the Argan Milk.
Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk Intensive Hydrating Treatment ($56 for 1 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “100 percent natural, emulsifier-free, hydrating treatment serum” that features powerful anti-aging benefits. Microdroplets of 100% Pure Argan Oil are suspended in purified water (which gives it the “milky” look), allowing the “skin-saving benefits of Argan Oil” to deeply nourish the skin.
Korres Greek Yoghurt Nourishing Primer
I have tried out at least 20 different foundation primers over the last couple of months and I think I have finally found the perfect one for me — it’s not this one from Korres, though. Again, my skin has changed so much over the last year that a brand-new primer was just another skincare item that I needed for my new dry/sort of sensitive skin type.
I’m going to do a post on foundation primers soon because I have bought and sampled soooo many recently and I ended up returning about half of the ones I bought. I think I finally settled on a primer from NARS and/or a primer from Laura Mercier (I use Laura Mercier foundation so I think that’s why the primer worked so great). But anyway, this primer from Korres really wasn’t bad. It felt amazing on my skin and I really love that “Greek Yoghurt” scent (I know some people don’t really like it). This one just didn’t make my foundation last for as long as I would have liked.
Korres Greek Yoghurt Nourishing Primer ($30 for 1.01 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “skin-perfecting and silicone-free face primer” that is enriched with ultra-nourishing Greek yogurt for “the smoothest makeup application and long-lasting wear.” This primer has a gel texture that glides onto skin, leaving a dewy finish.
Murad Hydrating Toner
I actually had to return this product after a few uses because it made me break out. I started using so many different products at once but for some reason I just knew this was the culprit for my breakouts. I have sensitive-ish skin, but I’m not sensitive to products, per se. I can usually use any product on my face and not have to worry about breakouts (I honestly think the bulk of my breakouts come from my new puppy because I am always rubbing my face on his cute little face), but I checked online and I found that a few people did break out from this toner. The majority of people seemed to love it, though, and I don’t think that breaking out from this product is very common.
Murad Hydrating Toner ($27 for 6 oz.; sephora.com) is an alcohol-free toner that “replenishes lost moisture to refresh skin and prepare it for treatment.” It is described as a “lightweight mist” that rehydrates and refreshes skin while restoring skin’s natural pH balance and it also neutralizes surface impurities. It contains Sodium PCA to improve hydration, chamomile and cucumber extracts to soothe and minimize irritation, and vitamins C and E to provide “powerful antioxidant protection.”
Formula X “X ♥ Rouge” Nail Polish
These next three items were just freebies/point perks that I added to my online order. I received this nail polish as a VIB Rouge renewal gift and I wasn’t too crazy about the color (I’m really not a red girl) so I gave it to my friend Nicole because she looks great in any kind of red makeup or nail polish!
FORMULA X “X ♥ Rouge” Nail Polish (reg. $10.50, VIB Rouge exclusive; sephora.com) is described as a “striking nail lacquer in a classic candy apple red,” available exclusively for VIB Rouge re-qualifying members.
Sephora Beauty Insider 100-Point Perks: Dr. Brandt Skincare Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant and Tarte Cheek Stain in
And the very last products in my second Sephora summer haul were these two Beauty Insider 100-point perks. I said in my last post (the VIB Rouge Summer Surge event) that I keep getting the 100-point Dr. Brandt exfoliator samples and I have so many of them that I don’t have to buy the full-sized tube anytime soon. This is my favorite exfoliator and really the only one I have ever used that gives me such noticeable results.
Dr. Brandt Skincare Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant (reg. $78 for 2 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “powerful at-home alternative to in-office skin exfoliation procedures.” It contains pharmaceutical-grade crystals, lactic acid and soothing botanicals to polish away dead skin cells, leaving your skin looking and feeling radiant, healthy and smooth. It also diminishes the appearance of fine lines, acne marks and skin discolorations.
Tarte Cheek Stain (reg. $30 for 0.5 oz.; sephora.com) is a natural-looking and award-winning cheek stain that “imparts a just-pinched look.” It delivers a radiant, natural-looking flush as well as anti-aging and skin-restorative benefits.
Okay so that was a pretty long and photo-heavy post. I think the post for my third haul will be a bit shorter (this one took me awhile). All products are available in Sephora stores and on Sephora.com, as well as directly from the individual brand websites. Other beauty retailers also carry many of these items, including Macy’s and ULTA.
Sephora’s “Summer Surge” kicked off on Sunday with an exclusive shopping event for VIB Rouge members (the top Beauty Insider rewards program tier) and I actually woke up extra early on a Sunday to head to my favorite Sephora store just so I could score the exclusive goodies. This cute shopper (above), plus a “limited edition” cosmetic bag filled with samples were available during the event (from 9-11 AM) with a $35 purchase.
I actually got there after 11 AM, but I called first to make sure I would still be able to get the free stuff if I came late, and the sales associate told me that the shopper and cosmetic bags would still be available until they ran out of them. So, if you missed the event, you might still be able to get the freebies if your Sephora store didn’t run out of them yet!
Sephora Summer Surge VIB Rouge Sample Bag
These were the freebies in the “exclusive” makeup bag. The bag itself was just a plain black case — they made it sound a little nicer, but it’s whatever. I have so many makeup bags at this point that I don’t even know what to do with them, and a solid black one always comes in handy. I think the products in the sample bag differed a bit from person to person, I guess it depended on whatever the store had available. The bag I received included the following eight samples:
DR. JART+ Water Fuse Beauty Balm SPF 25 Mini Sample (0.2 oz.) — Also a good size, especially for trying out the product over a few days (I think I can get at least a week out of this tube, maybe more).
Algenist Complete Eye Renewal Balm Mini Sample (0.23 oz.) — Another great size. I had this same exact sample before and you get a LOT of use out of this little jar. I would say almost a month since you use so little of the product around the eyes.
Deluxe sample-sized (0.12 oz.) Blinc Mascara Amplified in Black — This is a completely new product for me so I’m excited to try it out.
Benefit Watt’s Up! Highlighter Mini Sample (0.08 oz.) — I have so many of these already that I haven’t even had to buy the full-sized product yet. Love this one and the sample size lasts forever because I use so little of the product, it’s great!
Laura Mercier Foundation Primer – Protect Deluxe Sample (0.5 oz.) — Awesome size, great primer. I have actually been mixing this with my other Laura Mercier primer (the radiance one) and I’m loving the result.
My purchases (4x points)
And, of course, I had to buy something. In order to get the freebies you had to spend at least $35, which is never a problem for me when it comes to ANY kind of shopping, not just makeup! I actually placed an online order on Sephora.com a couple days before the “Summer Surge” on Sunday, so I really didn’t NEED anything.
Alterna Bamboo Smooth Anti-Humidity Hair Spray ($18 for 7.5 oz.; sephora.com): I got this because I so desperately needed a new, GOOD hair spray. My hair gets super frizzy and poofy during the summer, and I have been on the hunt for a good anti-humidity hair spray for … years, really. I love Alterna’s Bamboo Smooth line so I decided to try this one out, and I’m definitely liking it a lot so far! I’ll really put it to the test the next time it rains — which will probably be in a day or two thanks to this super stormy New York summer.
Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner in Violet ($20 for 0.01 oz.; sephora.com): I don’t really use Stila’s Smudge Sticks in natural colors for everyday wear, but I do love the ones that come in bright colors and I decided to start a mini collection. It seems like some of the bright colors are only available in stores (like the turquoise shade), but this beautiful violet is definitely available in stores and online. I’m going to do a colorful summer eyeliner post this week and include this one from Stila 🙂
Make Up For Ever Mist & Fix ($12 for 1.01 oz.; sephora.com): I’ve been using the Urban Decay All Nighter makeup setting spray for a couple of years now, but I have been meaning to try out this one from MUFE since the product description makes it sound so wonderful. I only used this once so far (I’ve been doing lazy, half-assed makeup the last few days), but I think I like it better than the UD spray! I bought the smaller bottle so I could try it out; the full-size bottle costs $29.
Sephora Beauty Insider 100-point samples
And the very last things I got during the Sephora Summer Surge shopping event were these two Beauty Insider 100-point samples. I have so many points and I keep saving them up for an awesome 500-point set, and there are some great 500-point rewards right now but it’s all stuff I either already have, or stuff I don’t really have a use for. So I just pick up the 100-point samples whenever I see something I like. I actually have so many of the 100-point Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Exfoliant (my favorite exfoliator) right now that I don’t even have to buy the full-size tube anytime soon 🙂
The Sephora Summer Surge is going on until August 10 and it’s a chance for Sephora Beauty Insiders on all tiers of the program to earn extra points on all purchases, in-store and online. Beauty Insiders (the first tier) get 2x points, VIBS (the second tier) get 3x points, and VIB Rouge (the third tier) get 4x points.
They say the free goodies are just for VIB Rouge, but if it’s not a busy store and they have extra freebies they might be able to give them to any Beauty Insider member. Always ask for free samples no matter what! You’d be surprised by what they have behind the counter — like how I had no idea they had this freebie from BUXOM on my last trip. Happy summer makeup shopping!
Every time I get new LUSH products I usually can’t wait to use them so I either A). forego taking the photos and writing up a review post, or B). I actually take the pictures but I wait way too long to get the review up and the products are no longer available. A lot of LUSH’s gift sets are seasonal so that’s exactly what happened over the holidays this year — I ended up taking photos of a bunch of different products and then never got around to writing the review.
I haven’t really gotten anything new from LUSH since the holidays, and then this little box of happiness showed up in my house a couple of weeks ago as a gift to my mom. I took the liberty of opening it up and taking photos and then testing everything out since it all looks super cute and cool 🙂
LUSH Ray of Sunshine ($28.95 for four items – detailed below; lushusa.com) is described as a “shower box of warmth, comfort and Mediterranean citrus jubilation” that includes four citrus products for refreshing showers. LUSH describes this set as their “brightest, cheeriest collection,” and it includes a miniature Sugar Scrub, Each Peach massage bar, The Olive Branch shower gel and a wedge of Sexy Peel soap. This set is offered year-round.
LUSH The Olive Branch Shower Gel
LUSH The Olive Branch Shower Gel ($9.95 for 3.3 oz.; lushusa.com) contains skin softening organic olive oil, vital antioxidants, an “infusion” of vine leaves, sea salt and fresh mandarin juice. It smells like sunshine and citrus (if “sunshine” was a smell), and LUSH says that mandarin juice has been used for years to “lighten the mood and freshen up dull skin.”
This was definitely one of the most moisturizing shower gels I have ever used and I wish I had a bigger bottle of it because the 3.3-oz. size got used up way too quickly. I’m pretty sure anyone who’s ever used this shower gel has loved it, so if you want to try it out I would definitely recommend a larger bottle!
LUSH Each Peach Happy Face Massage Bar
LUSH Each Peach Massage Bar (reg. $10.95 for 1 oz.; lushusa.com) is a moisturizing bar infused with fruity avocado and mango kernel butters mixed with a cocoa butter and shea butter base for ultimate skin softening and nourishment. This bar is super emollient and moisturizing for the skin and it also “gives a good glide” when it is being massaged into the body. It includes lime, mandarin and orange essential oils which are “uplifting mood boosters” and go along perfectly with the rest of the Ray of Sunshine set.
The smiley face bar seems to be exclusive to Lush’s Ray of Sunshine set but it has all the same properties as the regular Each Peach bars. It looks like the regular bars are sold out right now on Lush’s website, but they are probably still available in stores and this particular extra happy bar is definitely still available in the Ray of Sunshine set (in stores and online).
This product is awesomely moisturizing and it’s such a cool, unique product — I’m not surprised at all that people gave it such great reviews on Lush’s website. I actually thought this was a bar of soap at first, then I read the product description and found out that it’s a silky moisturizer in bar form that’s made with natural butters and oils. It’s also super cute, so that’s an extra plus 🙂
LUSH Sugar Scrub
LUSH Sugar Scrub ($6.25 for 3.5 oz.; lushusa.com) is described as a “stimulating” sugar scrub that contains Fair Trade sugar to exfoliate and fennel and ginger to stimulate circulation and warm the skin. It is also formulated with “calming” lavender to balance out the rough exfoliants and encourage healthier skin.
I haven’t tried this product out just yet, but I plan on using it today or tomorrow. It is designed to buff away dead skin and leave your skin glowing, and many reviewers said that it definitely does what it’s supposed to do, although the scrub itself gets a little messy and crumbles when it comes in contact with water. A lot of reviewers said that they either break off a small piece and take it in the shower (leaving the rest of the product in a dry place), or they break down the whole thing into a small bowl to cut down on the messiness.
The general consensus was that it does indeed work, and it also has a great smell. I’m just going to have to use it with caution because I have a history of easily destroying products like this!
LUSH Sexy Peel Soap
LUSH Sexy Peel Soap ($6.40 for 3.5 oz.; lushusa.com) is made with the peel from organic oranges, limes and lemons to give the soap the “exfoliating texture of fresh marmalade.” It is a “scrubby soap” that contains citrus peels to exfoliate and tone the skin, revitalizing citrus juice and oils, and it’s rich in vitamin C. The acidity of the orange juice helps keep skin clear and all of these yummy ingredients rolled into one bar will get your senses going and help wake you up in the morning.
I lovedddd this soap bar — it felt so awesome on my skin and it has a pretty, citrus-y scent that lasted for hours after my shower. This one also got really high marks on Lush’s website and a lot of reviewers said that the zingy citrus actually did help them wake up in the morning. The only problem I had, and a bunch of reviewers said this too, was that it didn’t last very long and I was barely able to get a full week’s use out of it.
For “optimal longevity,” Lush suggests to keep this soap in a well-drained soap dish and away from water in-between uses. I think it would have lasted longer for me if I read this suggestion before using it. Either way, I’m really not all that bothered by the fact that this soap doesn’t last too long because it costs less than seven bucks, and the low price combined with all the great (and natural) ingredients make this product more than worth it (in my opinion). I will definitely be buying a replacement next time I’m in the vicinity of a Lush store.
All four products in this giftset were great with amazing, nourishing ingredients that actually work. I think it’s definitely worth the ~$30 price tag, but I don’t think I would buy it again because the products just didn’t last long enough. There are other Lush shower gels that I like better (even though I did really, really like this one) so I’d rather pick those up, and I’m definitely going to be buying the Sexy Peel soap again since it’s so cheap (and I’m going to follow the instructions this time so it can last longer). So all in all, this is a great set for a great price and perfect for someone who wants to try out four of Lush’s wonderful bath products.
Lush’s Ray of Sunshine gift set costs $28.95 for four popular bath products and it is available in Lush stores and online at Lushusa.com.
BUXOM Haute Pink Lips Sephora VIB Set: 3 Brand-New Lip Shades. From left to right: Mini Full-On Lip Polish in Nicole; Mini Full-Bodied Lip Gloss in Sweet Thing; and Mini Full-Bodied Lipstick in Mistress
I received these three BUXOM lipgloss and lipstick shades in a Sephora VIB gift a few weeks ago — it was available in stores, but I never saw a code for it online. I’m not sure if this set is still available, but the full-size versions definitely are and they are all new BUXOM colors. I wanted to do a post because each formula is amazing (all three are different), and the colors are beautiful and perfect for the summer. That, and the photos I took actually came out okay (you can actually notice the difference between the three colors), even though I took the pictures at night.
So before I go into each lip product individually, I just wanted to show the swatch photo I took – I just took one swatch photo of all three shades side by side instead of three individual pictures; this way you can see the contrast between the colors a lot better. On the left is the lipstick, which does come out a bit creamier-looking when applied to the lips (you can see that in the photo below); then the full-bodied gloss (my favorite one); and then the sheer lipgloss.
(Mini) BUXOM Full-Bodied Lipstick in “Mistress”
The first product was a mini version of Buxom’s Full-Bodied Lipstick. This shade wasn’t exactly HOT pink, but it was very pink nonetheless. I love Buxom products, especially their lip products (their lip liner is the only liner I use), and this lipstick was no different. I loved the creamy consistency and the color payoff was amazing. I’m really trying to branch out and wear different, brighter colors on my lips, and even though this one is really almost like a nude baby pink, it is still very noticeable and it looks great with a light/natural makeup look for the day.
BUXOM Full-Bodied Lipstick in “Mistress”
Buxom Full-Bodied Lipstick ($21 for 0.13 oz.; sephora.com) is a “full-coverage lip color” that has a “gentle plumping effect.” It really made my lips look pretty and full (without the plumping tingle). I’m more of a lipgloss girl than a lipstick girl, but this is one of my favorite lipsticks, especially since it doesn’t come out cakey and it has a satin finish. It is described as a “smooth, creamy, ultra-hydrating lipstick” that contains encapsulated hyaluronic spheres to help promote hydration and fullness, as well as shea butter, coconut oil, chamomile flower wax, and vitamins C and E to help moisturize, soothe and protect.
(Mini) BUXOM Full-On Lip Polish in Nicole
The next product was a much brighter pink, described as a “shimmering strawberry,” in Buxom’s Full-On Lip Polish formula. This is Buxom’s sheer lipgloss formula and, even though it is considered “sheer,” the color is definitely very, very noticeable. It’s not sticky and it also has a plumping technology to make your lips look full and prettier.
BUXOM Mini Full-On Lip Polish in Nicole
Buxom Full-On Lip Polish ($19 for 0.15 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “sheer, high-shine lip polish” that creates the look of “fuller, more voluptuous lips.” It has a “gentle plumping effect” that comes along WITH the tingle (unlike the lipstick and the other gloss, below), and it contains vitamins A and E, which help to keep lips soft, supple and protected.
(Mini) BUXOM Full-Bodied Lip Gloss in “Sweet Thing”
The last lip product is my favorite one. This is Buxom’s “Full-Bodied” Lipgloss, and it totally lives up to its name — the color came out beautifully and it was definitely way more “full-bodied” than the sheer Lip Polish (above). This gloss is also very moisturizing and feels super nourishing on my lips (which are usually pretty dry), and it also plumps the lips, but without leaving the tingle effect.
BUXOM Full-Bodied Lip Gloss in “Sweet Thing”
Buxom Full-Bodied Lip Gloss ($19 for 0.15 oz.; sephora.com) is described as a “shimmering, hydrating gloss with a no-tingle plumping effect.” It is an “ultra-hydrating” gloss that contains encapsulated hyaluronic spheres that help promote hydration and fullness, as well as jojoba oil and vitamin E to help moisturize and protect lips.
All three of these BUXOM shades are available exclusively in Sephora stores and online at Sephora.com!