I say this about almost all of the subscription boxes I receive, but really, Glossybox is one of my favorites and I am always looking forward to it each month. I didn’t think this month’s Glossybox was the best one ever, but it definitely wasn’t bad either.
I received my Julep Maven box for November a couple of days ago and yay — I loved it. I chose three add-ons this month so I got one item for free, and then Julep threw in a surprise nail color for all Mavens, which was another freebie … so I received 8 products in total, plus a yummy caramel apple lollipop. Really good month for Julep, in my opinion.
This is only my third Beauty Box Five subscription box, and, so far, I’m really enjoying them. This beauty subscription is only $12/month so my expectations weren’t too high, but, over the last three months, I’ve been receiving a really good mix of products (both drugstore brands and more “luxury” brands), and these products have proved to be very useful. This month was no different.
Each month five different beauty products are sent out, all packed up into this cute turquoise box — which is one of my favorite colors. The products range from makeup to skin care to hair care and they come in either full sizes or deluxe sample sizes, so you really can actually sample the products. I hate it when I get a single-use sample packet in subscription boxes because I feel like I can’t even get one full use out of them, so they kind of just take up space (I complain about this all the time).
First up are these cooling body cloths that can be used any time you need a refreshing pick-me-up, perfect for after the gym, or to freshen up after work before dinner, or whatever is next on your itinerary for the day, if you don’t have time to stop home. I like how BB5 sent out three of these wipes, so, like I said before, you can actually really sample this product and see how well they really work.
Ban Total Refresh Cooling Body Cloths ($2.97 for 10 cloths; feelbanfresh.com) are described as “lightly-fragranced cloths” that cool skin on contact and wipe away sweat for “long-lasting freshness.” They are cool to the touch and have a light powder scent, and can be used on any part of your body – “around your neck, chest, or under arms” – for “cool, instant freshness.” Perfect to use after exercising, at work, before appointments, or on the road.
I usually don’t really like receiving perfume samples in my subscription boxes, just because I have SO MANY of them, and I have a lot of perfumes to begin with so I don’t really find more samples very necessary. I was actually really happy about this perfume because it smells amazing, and I might not have tried it if I didn’t receive it in my Beauty Box Five this month. I’m definitely buying the full-size bottle of this fragrance.
Harvey Prince Hello Eau de Toilette ($55 for 5.7 oz.; beautybox5shop.com) has a pretty floral scent that is the “perfect way to transition from spring to summer.” It contains “refreshing notes of mandarin, grapefruit, forsythia, and plumeria for a sunny and subtle signature.” It also features even more refreshing notes of Meyer Lemon, Wild Verbena, Tahitian Vanilla, and Sensual Musk.
I will never complain about getting a full-sized eyeliner in a subscription box because this is the type of product that I go through like bottles of water. This liner from Cattiva isn’t bad — I usually have very watery eyes, so I need super waterproof liners, and, even if the liner says it’s “waterproof”, sometimes that’s not even good enough.
This one held up pretty well (I only used it once so far), but I still had a little bit of a mess under my eyes and I’m not sure how well it holds up on my bottom waterline. I think this one will only work for me on my upper lash line. I also hate these twist-up liners that don’t come with sharpeners; I know they are meant to be smudged, but I still need a sharp line to line my eyes, so I’m going to try to sharpen it with the mini sharpener that comes with my favorite Chanel Stylo Yeux waterproof twist-up liner.
CATTIVA Precisione Eye Liner ($20 for 0.012 oz.; beautybox5shop.com) is described as a waterproof and retractable eyeliner that delivers “smooth, smudge-resistant lines.” This pencil can be used for both a minimalist or smokey look, and it’s paraben-free.
I haven’t used this product yet, but I love facial masks so I’m excited to try it out, and this one is hydrating, which is especially good for my combination-dry skin.
MaskerAide Weather Warrior Hydrating Facial Sheet Mask ($5.99 for one mask; maskeraide.com) is described as a 100% biodegradable, hydrating sheet mask that is also paraben-free and vegan-friendly. MaskerAide has a bunch of different masks, each one having its own specialty, and the “Weather Warrior” one that I received is meant to heal your skin from the damaging elements like harmful UV rays, wind, and extreme cold.
This mask contains Aloe, Green Tea, Witch Hazel, and Argan Oil to “help soothe, calm, and heal your skin, allowing it to breathe a sigh of relief.” You can increase the cooling effect of this mask by popping it in the freezer for 15 minutes before opening, and it can also be used 2-3 times per week to help prolong your tan.
I haven’t used this product yet either, but I plan on using it tonight before bed. I’m loving H2O Plus products lately, and I have a feeling I’m going to be seeing noticeable results with this gentle exfoliating cleanser.
H2O Plus Aqualibrium Marine Cleansing Gel ($18 for 4.06 oz.; h2oplus.com) is described as an “oil-free cleanser” that “foams away makeup and impurities while soothing the skin.” It is formulated with Wakame, Sea Fennel, and Sea Lettuce, which infuse the skin with vital moisture and nutrients; mineral-rich Sea Salt, which “renews and purifies for a visibly youthful glow”; and micro-encapsulated exfoliating beads that glide across skin, gently polishing away dullness and softening its texture.
I’m definitely going to be using every single product in this month’s Beauty Box Five, so, for me, it was totally worth the $12 monthly charge. Most of the items are (deluxe) sample sizes, but they are big enough to actually SAMPLE, and get multiple uses out of them. I always love getting full-sized items in beauty boxes (like the CATTIVA eyeliner this month), and I am most likely going to be buying the full-size version of the sweet-scented Harvey Prince perfume!
Beauty Box Five is a monthly beauty subscription service that costs $12 per month and sends out five full- and deluxe-sized product samples. To subscribe click here, or visit beautybox5.com for more information.
I still haven’t posted my review of the Julep Maven box from April yet, but for some reason I just can’t seem to get through the photos – I think I just don’t like how they came out — plus there’s a lot of them – so I decided to just do the Birchbox review first, and then I’m posting the Pop Sugar Must Have review for May right after this one. I might not even get around to doing the Julep review for this month (last month, really), and I honestly wasn’t too excited about the last Julep Maven box anyway.
I seriously have so many things to blog about but I always tie myself down with these long subscription box reviews (I say this all the time), so I try to get them out of the way first. I’m going to try to get these next two done quickly so I can finally get back into the swing of blogging about things that aren’t JUST subscription boxes.
SO, with that being said, I was actually quite happy with my Birchbox this month, and that’s really saying a lot because I’ve been pretty disappointed in my Birchboxes for, well, almost a year now, really. I mean, I haven’t DISLIKED every single one, but I just felt like the ones I have been receiving have had more products that I didn’t like than products that I did like and would actually use.
This month I am happy to say that I did like the majority of my products, and even though I received yet another shampoo/conditioner sample (I really don’t use anything but Wen Haircare products), these samples were okay because I got to try out the new Nexxus Color Assure products. I didn’t really like how they worked (definitely will be sticking with Wen), but it was nice to see the whole shampoo/conditioning/pre-wash primer collection all in one in the box.
This month, Birchbox also teamed up with Kate Spade’s new Kate Spade Saturday line and hooked subscribers up with a $25-off offer from the brand, and also packed up the boxes into a pretty bright yellow shipping box (doesn’t look too pretty in the pic ^^ because of “wear and tear,” but the color itself is one of my favorites).
A few times a year, Birchbox has been sending out a variety of different teas from different brands and I like the fact that when a tea is sent out, they usually include more than one flavor for you to try out. I haven’t tried out these teas yet but I definitely will over the next two days. These were a “Lifestyle Extra” item this month (Lifestyle Extras = non-beauty items that Birchbox occasionally sends out … there is an option in the Birchbox profile to receive Lifestyle Extras more often, too — I don’t have this option checked, but I still receive them from time to time, which I like).
Harney & Sons Fine Teas ($9.60 for box of 20; birchbox.com) are described as “rich and flavorful tea blends” from a family-owned craft tea brand. Harney & Sons started out with six original teas and has now grown to over 600. I received Pomegranate Oolong, a “tangy fruity brew,” and Caribe, a black and green tea blend with tropical flavors.
Okay, so I really wasn’t too thrilled about this shampoo/conditioner combo. First of all, I really thought that I would have been able to get more than one use out of the little sample packet “bottles” — I mean, I should have known that they were only single-use packets, but the little mini bottle shape kind of threw me off and made me think that they were like deluxe-sized samples for some reason. Then I opened up the package and realized that it was really just a fancy-looking sample packet.
So, I guess more important than the packaging, is that the shampoo totally dried my hair out (even though it’s sulfate-free), and the conditioner wasn’t conditioning enough to make up for the dryness of the shampoo. I’m not sure what I think/how I feel about this whole “pre-wash primer” deal — With this one, you can definitely get more than one use out of, and I only used about 1/4 of the sample packet so far. I think I put too much on though, because my hair was all greasy feeling, but that instantly went away when I shampooed.
I seriously feel like my hair was completely stripped of all of its nourishing nutrients. That might not be entirely fair, because maybe I’m just too used to the Wen line that I use (I have SEVERELY dry hair), but I will definitely not be using this stuff again.
Nexxus Color Assure Pre-Wash Primer, Shampoo & Conditioner ($11.99-17.99; birchbox.com) is described as an “oil-infused trio” that helps keep color vibrant for up to twice as long. The system is sulfate-free and it is supposed to provide extra nourishment and moisture that color-treated hair usually needs. Again, it didn’t work for me, but I have hair that’s drier than most, and shampoos in general tend to make my hair feel extra dry and stripped.
I was fidgeting with this photo for what seemed like hours and I just couldn’t get it to come out the way I wanted it to, and then I messed up a little bit on the editing part. So just excuse the photo quality and read on to the descriptions!
First, I wasn’t too thrilled to see yet another Coola product in a Birchbox (I have received at least four so far over the last year, year-and-a-half), and they have all been moisturizers or sunscreens that I really had no use for, and ended up either giving them away or throwing them out. So, when I read a little further about the actual product I realized that it wasn’t just another SPF sunscreen/lotion, and it is actually an after-sun lotion, a product that I will most certainly be needing over the next few months as the weather gets hotter and hotter.
Coola Environmental Repair Plus Radical Recovery After-Sun Lotion ($32 for 6 oz.; birchbox.com) is described as a “soothing lotion” that uses agave to “moisturize, protect and calm any post-sun woes.” Unlike other after-sun gel lotions, this one is lightweight and has a silky, smooth texture that “sinks into skin immediately.” The agave takes the sting out of sunburns, moisturizes the skin and “promotes collagen synthesis to help repair your skin and reverse sun damage.” Seventy percent of the ingredients in this lotion are harvested from organic farms, so there’s a sweet, all-natural bonus.
The next product, a serum from Marcelle, is a Birchbox exclusive. I was really excited as soon as I read about this product because I have been looking for a serum that would hydrate and plump my skin, the way this promises to do. I have only tried it out a couple of times so far, and it says that you will see results after one week of use, so I’m not sure how well it works yet, but I will definitely be using it over the next five days so I can find out, and if I like it I’m going to buy the full-size version (only available at Birchbox.com).
Marcelle New-Age 8 in 1 Power Serum ($34 for 1 oz.; birchbox.com) is described as a lightweight formula that “boasts five peptides, the amino acids that amp up collagen production and improve elasticity, plus xylitol, a natural sugar alcohol that helps retain moisture.” These potent ingredients work to smooth and fill fine lines and visibly reduce wrinkles. They also firm, lift, strengthen, boost radiance and “improve the texture of your complexion.” This serum is formulated without parabens or fragrance.
I’m really not sure how I feel about Pixi beauty products. I feel like I haven’t tried out enough of them to fully judge how well they work, but I do think a lot of the packaging is cute (like this lip balm). It’s obviously not super luxurious or anything like that, but it’s cute. I really like the colors. This balm has a great color payoff — it’s not too reddish (as I thought it might be), it’s a pretty true coral shade. I’m not sure about how well it moisturizes because my lips are still chapped from the winter (and biting them too much), so I used it over a moisturizing balm and I liked how that came out. I’m not sure about how long it stays on, either, but I plan to test it out more over the next few days.
Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm ($8 for 0.141 oz.; birchbox.com) is described as a “dual-purpose balm that hydrates with shea butter while giving lips a pretty wash of color.” It comes in five different shades that can be worn alone or layered under or over lipstick (or gloss). These balms contain shea butter AND vitamin E to “soothe parched lips and prevent future dryness” and Birchbox sent out a full-size version of these balms, so that is always a plus.
I was a lot happier with this box than I have been with most of my recent Birchboxes. I know that Birchbox is one of the cheapest subscription boxes (at only $10/month), but I have been receiving so many products that I would either A). never use; or B). small sample packets that I could hardly even get one full use out of, so those just seemed like a waste.
I’m happy with all of the products this month, except for the Nexxus shampoo and conditioner (especially since the packaging is a little misleading and I hardly even got one full shampoo out of it) — but I think that people who don’t have super dry hair like me might find the Nexxus products useful. Overall, I really liked May’s Birchbox, especially when compared to other recent Birchboxes.
This post is SUPER late and I am so happy that I’m finally getting it up! I received my April Glossybox over two weeks ago and I have been soooo busy with schoolwork and regular work that I just decided to take a mini-hiatus for the last couple of weeks. I hate making sporadic blog posts, so I am just glad that now I can give my blog the 100% I have been meaning to give it since I re-launched it months and months ago.
I gotta start with these subscription box reviews first; I know that a wave of boxes for May is about to hit my doorstep and I just want to get the two that I have left over for April up before I start posting everything else. But after these are done, I have so many product reviews, shopping, outfits, DIY projects, and a bunch of other ideas to blog about. So I’m excited to finally get this going.
Right now I am also in the process of updating both of my Facebook and Twitter pages for my blog so that they look a lot nicer and less empty, and I’m just excited to start really blogging about everything I love (all the pretty material stuff) that I see and am influenced by every single day.
So enough of my babbling and onto the review. I’m sure that anyone who is into subscription box reviews has already seen the Glossybox for April, but I like going a little in-depth to do mini-reviews of each of the products. As usual, I really enjoyed my Glossybox this month. I always say that Glossybox is one of the more “luxurious” beauty subscriptions, and that goes right down to the pretty pink box that all of the products arrive in each month.
I’ve been saving every single Glossybox I receive for at least a year now, and I literally have three huge piles of them quickly stacking up on my floor. I’m also in the process of doing a re-organization of my room, so I figured I would set the boxes aside for storage and I hate to even think of throwing them out because they’re so cute (and way more durable than the other beauty subscription boxes), so it’s a win-win for me.
I’ve been seeing Caldrea products pop up here and there in recent subscription boxes that I’ve been receiving (the hand soap in last month’s Pop Sugar Must Have box smelled absolutely amazing), and I really have no complaints. In fact, I would like to see even more Caldrea products. I only used this body wash once so far, but, like all of Caldrea’s products, it has a delightful aromatherapeutic scent and I definitely enjoyed it.
Caldrea Body Wash ($18 for 11.5 oz.; caldrea.com) is described as a body wash that is infused with brightening, free-radical fighting Angelica Root and Linden Flower extracts to reveal smooth, radiant and renewed skin.
The next product was another one with an amazing aromatherapeutic scent. I know that a lot of people aren’t too crazy about the scent of lavender, but I love it and I’m loving this body cream — although I’ve mostly been using it as a hand cream since the tube is the perfect size to throw in my handbag for the day, and it moisturizes my hands perfectly.
Aqua Spa Relax Body Creme Lavender + Chamomile ($10 for 9 oz.; aquaspabath.com) is described as an “ultra-rich conditioning body lotion that banishes dry skin while diminishing the signs of aging.” This body cream, along with all other Aqua Spa products, contains Marine Youth Complex, which is made up of anti-aging, skin-restoring sea minerals, and an “aromatic blend” of lavender and chamomile for “calming relief.” This product is paraben-free.
I haven’t used this lipgloss on my lips just yet, but when I quickly swatched it on my hand to test it out I realized that the color, which is beautiful and totally awesome, definitely differs a little bit from what it looks like in the tube (which is fine with me). I’m excited to try this one out because it sounds very promising.
Bellapierre Cosmetics Super Gloss in Vanilla Pink ($24.50 for .32 oz.; bellapierre.com) is made with natural ingredients and enriched with vitamin E, jojoba, avocado and sunflower waxes. This gloss is also infused with a natural plumper, which helps minimize fine lines on and around the lips to make lips appear “smoother and more healthy-looking.”
Okay so this next product was the first product I used as soon as I received my Glossybox and I just grabbed it out of the box without reading the description or directions and assumed that it was a regular eyeshadow base, maybe one that would work similarly to my favorite liquid sealer/base from Make Up For Ever. I was wrong, and this product is actually specifically for glitter and shimmer shadows. Of course I used it with my regular matte shadow that day and it made the shadow absolutely impossible to blend. Oops.
LASplash Cosmetics Eyeshadow Sealer/Base ($9 for 0.3 oz.; lasplashcosmetics.com) is described as a product that “intensifies color and provides extra protection against smears and smudges for flawless 12-hour wear.” To use, apply a very light coat across the entire eyelid and up to the brow bone (or wherever you plan on applying the shadow). Also, another thing that I should have read before trying this one out, is that you’re supposed to use a very, very thin layer of this stuff, only what is on the wand (don’t dip back into the tube to get more), otherwise your eyeshadow will become a creasey mess.
A bunch of different nail polishes from Ciate were one of the spoiler items for April that Glossybox gave a sneak peek for a few weeks before the boxes were shipped out. Glossybox subscribers received one of 13 warm-toned nail polish shades. I love Ciate polishes (especially the cute bottles), but I’m not exactly loving this color. It’s okay — I feel like it would have fared a lot better as an autumn shade instead of an April spring color. It seems a bit Halloween-y to me.
Ciate London Paint Pots ($15 for 0.46 oz.; ciatelondon.com) come in a wonderful range of 88 different hues and the formula itself is great. Like I said before, I really wasn’t crazy about the color I received, but I have used Ciate polishes in the past and they apply very well and the formula is definitely durable. Ciate’s “beautiful and sophisticated packaging encourages an incredibly artistic and effortless nail painting experience” thanks to the long-handled, dense, 250 bristle flat brush and the “amazingly pigmented”, long-lasting polish formula, which work together to give you a flawless finish.
Overall, I definitely enjoyed my April Glossybox … I always enjoy the Glossyboxes I receive and I love the fact that I get to try out and sample a lot more British and other European beauty brands (Glossybox originated in the UK). I am subscribed to so many beauty boxes, and I find that Glossybox is really the only one that constantly sends out new and exciting “luxurious” products, plus products that I find work VERY well.
Glossybox is a monthly beauty subscription service that costs $21 per month. You receive five full- and deluxe-sized beauty samples each month from more high-end, luxury brands. To subscribe using my referral code, click here to send me your e-mail address! For more information, visit Glossybox.com.
I got my Ipsy Glam Bag over a week ago, so I’m prettyyy late with this post … thanks to Easter/my birthday weekend. I try to get subscription box reviews up as soon as possible, especially since they get kinda old and boring after, like, a week, especially since there are so many subscriptions now, and as soon as you receive one the next one arrives … but I wanted to get the post up anyway … better late than never, of course. And with this post I am all caught up with my subscription boxes for the month, until my Glossybox arrives (hopefully in the next few days!).
I really love my Ipsy Glam Bag every month because you are always guaranteed at least one full-sized item (usually more than one), and the other items are always a great deluxe sample size, plus you get a little mini makeup bag each month so, all in all, I really think that the whole package is extremely worth it, especially since it only costs $10/month.
Ipsy features both high-end brands and more inexpensive, drugstore brands, and I’m not always thrilled with each product, but I usually love the majority of the items in my bag each month. The only complaint I have really is that I have seen the same brands appear in Glam Bags a lot, over the last six months or so, so I would definitely like to see a little more variety.
Like almost all of the other subscription boxes Ipsy has a “theme” each month and this month’s theme was “Beauty Rocks” I don’t really see how all of these products were very rock-n-roll, but the black Urban Decay eyeliner would certainly fit into this category, along with the shimmery white gold shadow/highlight mousse by City Color (which was a really fun product that was also new to me, and I love finding new products through subscriptions like this). Ipsy also includes a mini makeup case every month to hold all of your goodies.
I loves me some edgy makeup and rock music, but the cosmetics bag this month was kinda ehhh … I think they could have embodied “Beauty Rocks!” a lot better than this. Again, at just $10 per month, I really never expect the makeup bag to blow me away, and even if I don’t like the actual design or print that’s on the bag, the bags are usually the perfect size to carry whatever makeup you need for the day and then throw it in your purse. The bag this month was slightly larger than it has been in previous months and, again, I wasn’t a huge fan of the design, but it’s great for travel and on-the-go makeup carrying, so I’ll probably use it anyway.
I was super excited to see a (rather large) travel-sized version of Urban Decay’s new Velvet eyeliner formula in my April Glam Bag. This pencil is a new, “ultra velvety, plush version” of UD’s original creamy, waterproof 24/7 liner formula. As excited as I was to receive it, I honestly haven’t even tried it out yet. I just got another UD double-ended liner as a free sample so I’ve been using that, and I’ve been going more for a natural look the last couple of weeks since I’ve been lazy and haven’t really had the time to do my makeup.
Also, it seems that UD’s new Velvet formula is only available in this one shade (Black Velvet) right now, which I find a little strange. I haven’t really done any reading up on this liner formula yet, so I’m a little out of the loop, but just based off of what I see on UD’s website I don’t really get why they would come out with a new eyeliner formula and only have one color. I’m hoping they at least release a few more smoky-color options in this Velvet formula soon (as long as it’s a good formula, of course. Haven’t tried it yet).
Urban Decay 24/7 Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil ($20 for 0.04 oz.; urbandecay.com) is described as an “ultra-velvety, plus version” of UD’s “legendary” 24/7 Eye Pencil. The Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil is the “ultimate tool for smudging” and it has the same long-lasting benefits as the regular 24/7 pencils. The Velvet pencil is more powdery than the original liners, it blends easier “to create soft, smoky edges,” it contains moisturizing jojoba oils and it’s paraben-free.
I love receiving new eyeshadows in my subscription boxes that are different than your average eyeshadow and this one is definitely one of them, especially because it doubles as a highlighter. I’m not sure exactly how long this shadow formula lasts, or how it applies on the eyelids, for that matter (I just tried it out as a swatch on my hand so far), but I loved the smooth, mousse-y consistency and I LOVE the color. It’s a pretty shimmery white with hints of light gold.
City Color White Gold Shadow & Highlighter ($3.99 for 0.092 oz.; citycolorcosmetics.com) is a smooth and creamy multi-tasker used to brighten eyes and cheekbones, “enriched with luminosity, providing a beautiful gold sheen finish.” This product can be used as an eyeshadow base (or alone as a shadow), as well as a highlighter. I can’t wait to try this out as a base tomorrow!
I love Dr. Brandt products and I am loving this gentle microdermabrasion exfoliator; I’m surprised I have never used this one before. The weather is finally getting nicer and my skin is finally clearing up and balancing out (after the super dry winter), and, after just using this twice so far, I swear the product has made a difference in my skin. I love it when I see noticeable results, too, because I feel like that rarely happens in most skincare products I ever try (well, the ones that do have noticeable results are the ones that I buy and use).
Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant ($78 for 2 oz.; drbrandtskincare.com) is described as a “revolutionary formula designed to mimic the transformative brightening, smoothing effects of the popular in-office microdermabrasion treatment at home.” This skin exfoliant is formulated with pharmaceutical-grade crystals to gently polish away dead skin cells, leaving skin smooth and radiant-looking. It is an at-home alternative to professional treatments that helps diminish the appearance of fine lines, acne marks and skin discolorations and it received the 2012 Allure Best of Beauty Award for Best Scrub. Love this stuff. LOVE Dr. Brandt.
I’m really not a fan of Mary Kay’s business practices or products, so I wasn’t too excited about this lipgloss appearing in my Glam Bag. I think that the company exploits and manipulates women into becoming “businesswomen” when, in reality, these women are recruited just to become customers and buy the products. But, I digress. This post is about the beauty products, not a shady pyramid scheme.
I usually love trying out new lipgloss but this one just plain sucked. It’s going in the garbage. I won’t even pass it along to a friend because it’s super sticky and nearly impossible to work with and it felt so strange (for lack of a better word) on my lips. I guess that’s not entirely fair because I’m sure there are some girls out there who might like it, but I really think the product is crap and I’m not a fan of the business, either. Fellow Ipsters over at this product’s review page on Ipsy.com tend to agree.
Mary Kay At Play Jelly Lipgloss ($10 for 0.32 oz.; marykay.com) is described as a “comfortable-wearing formula that delivers a sheer wash of color with a brilliant, intense shine.” It’s supposed to give off a “wet” look and leave lips feeling “soft, smooth and quenched with moisture.” Again, this is the stickiest lipgloss I have ever used. I couldn’t even tell how smooth or moisturized my lips would feel because all I felt was this weird ultra-stickiness. It was so sticky and weird-feeling that it was uncomfortable. I can’t even explain it properly.
A few minutes after applying this stuff it was STILL sticky and it was just irritating me so I took it off less than five minutes after applying it. And then I tried it AGAIN just to see if maybe it would feel better with my regular lip balm underneath it and it didn’t. So, yeah. Just not my kind of product I guess.
I love Demeter fragrances and I haven’t used any in a few years now, so I was really excited to see one in my April Glam Bag. This Jasmine-scented roll-on perfume smells wonderful and it’s perfect to carry along with you throughout the day or wherever your travels may take you.
Demeter Jasmine Roll On Perfume Oil ($10 for 0.29 oz.; demeterfragrance.com) is described as “an exotic, sweet, warm floral bouquet” that is also “captivating and seductive.” Jasmine is one of the flowers “most valued by perfumers” and it has a “mood-inducing scent.” The Demeter Fragrance Library consists of “more than 250 different fragrances inspired by everyday objects and experiences” and 95% of Demeter’s ingredients are derived from natural or renewable resources.
To sum up, I really loved four out of five items this month … well, I haven’t really tried out the UD liner or the white gold shadow “mousse” to their full potential just yet, but I can’t wait to try them out tomorrow. The Dr. Brandt microdermabrasion is A+++, and I fell in love with Demeter fragrances all over again. I could have gone without the Mary Kay lipgloss, but with four awesome products and one not-so-great product this was definitely one of the better Glam Bags I have received recently, and I usually really like my Glam Bags a lot, too, so this one was extra awesome for me.
Ipsy Glam Bag is a monthly beauty subscription service that sends out 4-5 deluxe- and full-sized beauty products every month. It costs $10 per month, with a small tax to New York and I think to California as well (the tax is, like, less than $2). To subscribe click here or visit Ipsy.com for more information.
I’ve been so busy working and running around that I totally slacked off on posting this week, then this weekend I celebrated my birthday and Easter and I had zero time to do anything, so my review for this month’s Birchbox is a littleeee late (I actually received the box last week).
I was actually going through kind of a slump with my Birchbox boxes over the last, I would say, six months or so. I didn’t want to unsubscribe because it’s only $10/month and I do like surprises, but I felt like I was getting complete junk for a few months there — single-use samples, shampoos I will never use (one of these showed up again this month, but I’m just shrugging it off), and I just felt like I was getting the crappiest boxes, especially when I compared them to what other Birchbox subscribers were receiving each month.
With that being said, the last two months have been a bit of an improvement and I like the products I received these last two months way better than what I was getting. The only thing that annoys me is that I keep getting shampoos like every single month, and I definitely unchecked whatever hair product options there are in the Birchbox profile survey thing (which is what you fill out in order for Birchbox to personalize your monthly boxes as much as possible).
I don’t think I’ve used any of the shampoos that Birchbox has sent me. I might have tried them and then decided that they dried out my hair too much so I kicked myself for even trying (like I did with this one — read below). I a). cannot use shampoos with sulfates in them (although this one is sulfate-free); and b). I use Wen Cleansing Conditioner, which works amazing in my dry, damaged hair. So I really, really have no use for shampoos and for some reason Birchbox keeps sending them to me nearly every month.
So, that’s my little rant. Like I said, I really don’t have much room to complain since the subscription is only $10/month (and a flat fee at that — the 10 bucks includes shipping and tax fees), but there are other subscription boxes that cost the same or around the same for a much better selection of items each month.
Every month Birchbox sends out items based on a theme and this month’s theme was “Rainy Days.” The “crop of new and exciting products” featured this month are supposed to help you embrace the “rainy day mentality” and Birchbox also sent out cards with different “tips” on them that included “bright ideas for how to spend the next rainy day.”
I didn’t take a photo of the “tip” I got (there were a bunch of different ones sent out) because the one I got was pretty stupid, for lack of a better word. Or, well, maybe I should clarify — it was stupid for someone like ME because it was a “tip” on how to brew fresh coffee (I don’t know if that’s what it was exactly – I honestly just glanced at it quickly) — something I know very well, being a caffeine addict and all. I just think that little piece of cardboard could have been used better. I was expecting to see some fun or interesting arts and crafts/DIY tip or something. But I digress …
The aforementioned shampoo that I wasn’t too thrilled about came with a bonus packet of a conditioning reconstructing masque. I haven’t used the masque yet, but I usually like products like this, so I’ll definitely be using it.
Number 4 Hair Care Reconstructing Masque ($58 for 5.1 oz.; birchbox.com) is described as a “super-hydrating leave-in treatment,” infused with soy protein that works to reconstruct and strengthen hair, while natural conditioners like shea butter, jojoba seed oil, and sunflower oil work to nourish and moisturize strands. It also contains silicone polymer to smooth and detangle.
Number 4 Hair Care Clarifying Shampoo ($32 for 8.5 oz.; birchbox.com) is “subtly scented” with white freesia, golden amber, and warm musk to “gently cleanse without stripping moisture or color.” This shampoo is “rich in vitamins and antioxidants” to restore health and shine to overworked tresses. It contains black currant and soy to “restore vibrancy;” acai berry and vitamin C to “deliver youth-boosting antioxidants;” oolong tea and irish moss to “defend against environmental damage;” and lemongrass and oatmeal to gently cleanse and purify. It is vegan friendly and sulfate-, sodium chloride-, and paraben-free.
This shampoo sounds great in print and the ingredients sound amazing, but it really didn’t preserve the moisture in my hair at all and my hair felt like a big, dry desert mess even while I was still in the shower and my hair was still wet. I used my Wen Cleansing Conditioner and then some deep conditioner I had on top of that to balance everything out. My hair is definitely dryer than the average person’s hair so I’m not saying that this is how the shampoo will work for everyone, but if you opt for cleansing conditioner over regular shampoo and you have hair as dry as mine I would probably stay away from this product.
I haven’t used this serum yet and I honestly thought it was a face serum since the bottle is so small, but apparently it is a full-body serum and the full-sized version of this product is a whopping 10 oz., so that makes a lot more sense.
BijaBody Daily Body Serum ($34 for 10 oz.; birchbox.com) is a spray-on body serum that shields skin from the damaging elements, and moisturizes and enhances radiance while leaving behind a “lovely” scent. This serum contains “a host of protective and enriching ingredients” that includes antioxidant lycopene and rice bran oil to provide sun protection, white and green tea extracts to diminish the effects of sun exposure, a “highly absorbable” form of vitamin C that promotes cell growth and brightens skin tone, and organic honey to combat inflammation and bacteria as it hydrates. This serum can be layered under other SPF-containing products for the ultimate defense.
The next item was a nail art pen from Color Club (above). Pretty cool product as I have never really used anything like this before.
Color Club Art Duo Pen ($4 for 0.35 oz. or $10 for full-size; birchbox.com) is a dual-ended nail pen used to create intricate art. There are two tips you can use for different-sized designs, including stripes, swoops, chevrons, dots, flowers, animal prints, and more. This tool can be considered both a “palette and paintbrush” as it contains both high-quality lacquer and two ways to “put polish precisely where you want it.” The slender brus is for swiping on stripes and lines of color, while the pen-point tip is “ideal for dotting on more precise details.”
It’s always great to find a product that I use all the time in a subscription box, so I was definitely happy to see a mini clear brow gel from Anastasia in my April Birchbox.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel ($22 for 0.28 oz.; birchbox.com) is described as a “miracle-in-a-tube” that is fortified with botanical conditioners and oils to keep brows looking polished, without leaving behind any flaky, sticky residue. This brow gel can be used over an eyebrow pencil or alone for a more natural look, and it contains plant-based ingredients like chamomile extract to soothe skin, while essential oils prevents brows from flaking and a film-forming polymer helps keep them in place without looking stiff.
And the last product in the April Birchbox was a “Lifestyle Extra” – a crunchy/chewy grains bar from KIND Snacks. I thought this bar was definitely tasty (I love the whole sweet and salty thing), but the crunchy/chewy texture combined kind of made it almost seem like it had a stale consistency. I think it should have been either crunchy or chewy, but I’m no expert on healthy snack bars, and that is just my opinion 🙂
KIND Snacks Healthy Grains Bars ($11.88 for a pack of 15; birchbox.com) are wholesome, nonGMO and gluten-free snack bars made with five super grains “for maximum nutritional and taste bud benefits.” These bars are available in packs of 15 on Birchbox’s website in the following flavors: Maple Pumpkin Seeds with Sea Salt (the one I received), Dark Chocolate Chunk, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate, or a variety pack of the three.
This month’s Birchbox was okay, but, again, at just $10/month I really can’t complain. I haven’t tried out the nail art polish just yet, but I have a feeling that will be fun; the shampoo wasn’t right for me, but the little conditioning masque packet will probably work well; the body oil is something I wouldn’t normally buy for myself so it’s always great to receive those types of products; the snack bar was yummy (although the texture was kind of meh …); and the Anastasia brow gel is one of my favorite products so I am more than happy to add a travel-sized version to my collection.
Birchbox is a monthly beauty and lifestyle subscription service that costs $10 per month (flat fee). Every month Birchbox features a few dozen products that make up a bunch of different box combinations and the box you receive is customized to contain what they think will suit you the best based off of the beauty profile you fill out when first subscribing (you can update this profile at any time). To subscribe click here, or head over to Birchbox.com for more information.