Birchbox: October 2016

Each month, Birchbox has a featured box you are able to choose instead of the usual monthly samples. October’s featured box looked appealing to me, so I chose to receive it instead.

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Starting from the left is a sample from Oribe. It is their new gold lust dry shampoo. As always, it smelled amazing like all of the other Oribe products I have tried. I didn’t think it is the greatest dry shampoo, but it was a nice scent refresher. Next, is the Avene hydrance optimale hydrating cream. This was a nice facial moisturizer and was super rich. My skin has been getting more dry and it was a nice sample. Below that is a silk cream lipstick from Make. The color is magnolia and isn’t my favorite. It’s a nice mauve pink, but not totally me.  The green tube is Glamglow’s powermud dualcleanse treatment. Glamglow products are ridiculously expensive, so I like getting samples of their products. This was a nice white clay mask. Finally, the sample from This Works is a deep pillow spray. I think this smells gross – not super calming when you don’t like the smell.

The highlight of October’s box was definitely the Oribe sample. I absolutely LOVE how Oribe products smell. The great smell alone makes up for the fact that the dry shampoo wasn’t the best I’ve tried.

Overall, October’s box was good. I hadn’t received any of these samples before which is good. I’ve been a Birchbox subscriber for over three years, so I’m bound to get repeat samples. Any box where there are no repeats is good in my book.

If you haven’t already subscribed to Birchbox and are interested check it out here with a refer a friend link.

Sephora Play: August & September

Again, I am playing catch up for August and September. If you remember, I began subscribing to Sephora’s Play box a couple months ago. It is similar to Birchbox as you get six deluxe samples in a box in the mail for $10 a month.

Let’s take a peek at August’s Play box.

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August’s theme was eyes. Beginning on the top left, was a sample of Urban Decay’s perversion mascara. Below that is the Sephora Collection contour eye pencil 12 hour wear waterproof eyeliner in the color love affair. Next, is a Make Up Forever’s artist eye shadow in the shade I-544. There was a perfume sample from Clean in reserve warm cotton. On the top right is from Lancome and it is their energie de vie smoothing and glowing liquid care moisturizer. Not pictured is an eye renewal balm from Algenist. My favorite sample was the eye balm from Algenist as it is not pictured and in my bathroom because I use it twice a day and I pat it around my eyes.

I think August’s box was really good. I like getting mascara samples because I think they are great to take with when traveling. The same goes for the eyeliner and eye shadow. The smaller sample size is good for a makeup bag on the go.

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Moving on to September I was equally impressed. The top postcard looking thing is a perfume sample from Atelier Cologne in the scent sud magnolia. On the bottom left, is the sheer transformation moisturizer from Ole Henriksen. This moisturizer is so nice. The Living Proof sample is the perfect hair day night cap overnight protector. I’ve received this sample before in a Birchbox and really like it. It’s an overnight hair mask. On the right, the top silver tube is from Anastasia Beverly Hills and is the clear brow gel. Below that is Kat Von D’s tattoo liner. Finally, there is a rouge shine lipstick in the color love spell from Sephora Collection.

I have two favorites from September’s box. The clear brow gel and tattoo liner are some of my favorites. That liner is my go to black liner. I have the full size so this will be nice once that one is empty and dried out. All in all, I think September’s box was great. I got an email yesterday October’s box shipped and I look forward to what is in it.

Between Birchbox and Sephora Play, I think I tend to enjoy Sephora’s box better. I like being able to go to a Sephora and get these products if I wanted to. With Birchbox, I have to order online and wait for it to arrive. If I were to recommend one, Sephora Play would be the one.

Do you get any monthly subscription boxes? I want to know what you subscribe to!

 

Birchbox: August & September 2016

It has been far too long since I’ve written anything here. I’m sorry for that and I need to get better. Let’s catch up on a few things, like Birchbox.

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Above is the box I received for my August box. August’s theme was hair. I received (left to right) Bumble and bumble’s hairdresser’s invisible oil primer, Oribe apres beach wave and shine spray, Aven cleanance cleansing gel, Manna Kadar Cosmetics eye shadow, and Ren flash hydro-boost instant plumping emulsion. Whew, that was a lot. My favorite product was definitely the Oribe wave spray. I have loved every Oribe product I have sampled, mostly because of the smell. I liked this wave spray because it gave my hair texture, but didn’t provide a ton of grit and product residue in my hair. I haven’t touched the eye shadow yet. Eye shadow is my least favorite sample to receive in my box. I’m not sure why, I just don’t really like getting them. I would rather get some other makeup product or a skin care or hair care sample.

Let’s move on to September.

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In September’s box I hit the sample jackpot. The box was so full! Let’s go left to right again. In the brownish foil packets are Oribe replenishing body wash and restorative body creme. In front of that is Aromachology totally edible perfume. There is a microdermabrasion scrub by Derma E. The shampoo and conditioner is by Davines and it is their MOMO line for dry and dehydrated hair. Lastly, the little green bottle is nutriganics drops of youth by The Body Shop. So far, my favorite sample has been the drops of youth. I like how it feels on freshly washed face. I haven’t yet used the Oribe samples this month. I hope it smells just like their hair products, so we will see.

I think both August and September boxes were good! I definitely liked the amount of products in September’s box. I tend to use my Birchbox samples when I travel. I haven’t gone anywhere recently so I have a good pile of samples that I have used some of and not finished.

Speaking of this that I have finished, in the next couple weeks I’m going to have a post about empty products I have used up. I have an overflowing basket of empty product containers I have been collecting since July. Stay tuned for that!

How were your boxes from Birchbox?

Concealer Routine

I was chatting with a friend a month or so ago about concealer and how I put on concealer. I thought I would go through it and discuss it here too.

First, let’s start with my current favorite concealer – Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer.

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I use the color light neutral. I’m on my third or fourth tube of this concealer. It’s so good! There is a large color range and the consistency of it is fantastic.

Let’s get on with my how to. Warning, no makeup photo ahead.

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I have quite a bit of redness on my nose, forehead, cheeks, and chin that I prefer to conceal.

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First, I use a foundation. Today, I used It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+. I don’t know if it comes through, but I still have some redness around my nose. Let’s conceal.

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I like to place concealer under my eyes, down the side of my nose and cheeks, on the center on the top of my nose, corners of my nose, chin, and forehead. I apply some to any blemishes as well. Yes, I know this is a lot of concealer. I use a makeup sponge and blend it all out.

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Post blending, less redness and more even. I then set it all with some powder which keeps the concealer from creasing. We’re almost there.

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Makeup is done. Learning how to best cover up any redness and dark circles under my eyes has taken quite a bit of trial and error. I’m happy to have figured out a process that works for me. Hopefully you can try it out and it will work for you too.

How do you apply concealer? What is your favorite concealer?

Sephora Play – July 2015

A few months ago, I had signed up for the wait list for Sephora’s Play. Play is a monthly sample subscription service, similar to Birchbox. It’s $10 a month and sent out the third week of the month. July was my first month and I have to say, I am pleased.

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It comes in a striped box, which is similar to their paper bags. You open it up and first, there is the information card.

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The info card has a how to instructions and additional information about each product. The samples come in a fabric bag that you could re-use later.

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I received the following:

  • Blotterazzi by Beauty Blender
  • Too Faced Chocolate Soleil bronzer
  • Ouai Wave Spray
  • Nest Fragrances in Citrine
  • Smashbox Photo Finish Pore Minimizing Primer
  • First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser

What I like more about the Play box versus Birchbox is that I’ve heard of all of these products. I haven’t tried any of them, so am happy to test them out. My favorite out of the bunch of the Ouai Wave Spray. It smells nice and I’ve spraying it on last to my hair when I let it air dry. I don’t have central air in my house, so it’s way too hot t spend time blow drying my hair. The Ouai spray smells amazing and adds more texture to my hair.

Overall, I am really impressed with my first Play box! I am excited for August’s box to come in the mail and see what is in there. If you’re interested in signing up for Play, go here and sign up for the wait list. I will keep reviewing each month’s box in the future.

Happy Sunday!

Birchbox: July 2016

I received my July Birchbox a couple weeks back. Let’s jump into this.

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Birchbox has monthly themed boxes. Usually, I do not go for the themed box because they seem hit or miss. This one seemed really good. The theme was ideal mornings and your morning routine.

Let’s start with the shampoo and conditioner packets in the back. I love trying new shampoos and conditioners in these little packets. Also great for traveling. I haven’t found a Living Proof product I don’t like. I can’t say for certain the Living Proof No Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner cut down on frizz, since this is only a one use packet, but it was a nice sample to receive.

Next, is the blue packet which is the Klorane Smoothing and Relaxing Patches. It is an under eye mask patch you leave on for 20 minutes and then peel off. I used them when my eyes felt tired and puffy. It was very soothing and relaxing.

I received a Milk Makeup Sunshine Oil sample. I still don’t fully understand what I’m supposed to do with this. The info card that came with the box said it is a rollerball that brightens, deeply hydrates, and gives skin a dewy glow. Am I supposed to role it on my face?! I don’t need a “dewy glow” during the summer. I have no dryness issues in the summer. Also, the smell isn’t my favorite.

My favorite sample is the Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream. I have sampled this before and I love it. I love the smell and I usually apply it to damp hair to cut down on frizz. My hair gets real frizzy during the summer so anything that will cut down on that is great.

The Dr. Brandt PoreDermabrasion is a gentle exfoliator. I have received this sample before and don’t mind getting more of them. My sensitive skin doesn’t react to it and it is a nice little scrub for my face.

Finally, the last sample I received it the Elizabeth Mott It’s So Big Volumizing Mascara. This mascara is great for separating my eyelashes. I have found I like to put a layer of this on before applying my current in use mascara, Stila’s Huge Lash. The Stila mascara has an almost fluffy brush that isn’t great at separating my lashes. This sample has been a nice first coat to initially coat my lashes.

Overall, this month was pretty good. I received a good mix of products and am happy with the products I received. Except for that weird rollerball face oil…

I have another subscription service review coming up and it’s an exciting one! Stay tuned!

Review: L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation

L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation has been out on the market for a couple years. I had read many reviews prior to taking the plunge. I finally got on the bandwagon and purchased it. I am so happy I did.

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It has a demi-matte finish, so it’s isn’t completely flat. The formula is great and feels light while still providing a medium to full coverage. I have more oily skin than dry skin, so I would rather go with a product that is more on the matte side.

This foundation has been a lifesaver this summer. I don’t have air conditioning in my house, so I feel my face can become an oil slick if it is hot in my house.

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It is up to 24 hour wear. I haven’t tested the 24 hour wear, but it does last all day without getting weird and separating. I began with the shade 102, but realized it was a bit too dark. I picked up a tube of shade 101 and have found mixing the two makes the perfect color for my skin tone. Since purchasing the Pro-Matte foundation about a month ago, I have not used anything else since.

If you are someone who has drier skin, L’Oreal has recently released their Pro Glow foundation. I have not tried it as my skin is too oily, but have heard great things about it.

If you’re in the market for a new foundation, take a look at L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte. It is really good. Have you tried it?