Tag Archives: subscription boxes

Birchbox | April 2015

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I tried to act like those four packages sitting on the porch were not for me.  But hubby is getting good.  He used to not say anything, but now he deliberately looks at our front door as I drive past it to the garage.  STOP IT WITH YOUR EYES.  I write a beauty blog for a living.  Just because no one pays me to do it doesn’t mean I don’t have business expenses.  It’s basic mathematics.  And you can’t argue with that kind of logic.

Here’s my Birchbox:

First off, this box was delayed over 10 days on it’s journey between Indiana and Missouri.  How does this even happen?  I could probably walk and get it myself in less than 10 days.  That would be a sight to see, though.  Last time I walked it was to the copy machine or mailbox.  And then I had to go sit down and rest for the next 2 hours.  I’m a little out of shape you might say.

I don’t know about you, but when I get a product that I know darn well sits in the free amenity tray of the local Hampton Inn, it somehow negates the experience of receiving said product in a beauty box I pay for.  Enter the Neil George body wash.  Nothing against it necessarily, but you get what I’m saying.  However, in fairness, I haven’t actually seen this product in a hotel but I know with 100% certainty it comes from Gilchrist & Soames who truly does put products in hotels.  So Neil George is guilty by association at the very least.

BUT.  I will use it.  It’s body wash.  The scent of it is called Grapefruit Sage but I detected no hint of citrus anything.  Definitely masculine and herby.  Two of my most unfavorite smells.  Success!  The tube is relatively small so I’ll finish the whole thing, but I’m gonna go ahead and complain about it the whole time.  K?  K.

One product I did enjoy was the Supergoop! eye cream.  It’s really nice.  It has the consistency of marshmallow cream (delicious) and a little goes a very long way.  The finish of it is less velvety than my most recent eye creams, but there is a very noticeable brightening effect to it.  It would be the perfect daytime eye cream especially due to its SPF properties (of 37, which is such an odd random number).  I used it in the evening just one time, but I’m going to put it away and save it for when I finish my current daytime product.  Which will probably take light years, cuz I’ve been working at it for 5 months now and there’s no end in sight.  My perseverance really backfires on me sometimes.

Next is the Temple Spa Peace Be Still face and body balm.  Don’t get too excited – it’s just lotion.  I’ll admit I was sucked in too.  A body balm?!  Nope, still a lotion.  That is 100% less interesting.

This is yet another product in the box that I will still use despite the fact it’s boring as hell.  One thing to note, however, is that it can be used on hands, body AND face.  I don’t know if that makes it better or worse than using three separate products – I suppose it depends on your level of lazy.  I mean, I’m terribly lazy but I also have an anal personality so I like having specific lotions for specific parts.  This is why I have a 17-step skincare regimen.  I’m not interested in your 3-in-1s, but thanks.

Aside from all that, this product is fine for what it is.  Smells like herbs once again.  I checked the website and it’s official scent is lemon, coriander and nutmeg.  Does this make you want to rub it all over your body?  If the answer is yes, you should buy this.  Also, you’re WRONG.

I was perfectly fine with getting another tube of Anastasia Beverly Hills clear brow gel because I love it so much.  If you want proof, click here and see for yourself.  I don’t know what it is about this particular gel but nothing else I’ve ever tried has stood up to it.  So stop wasting time if you’re on a mission:  your mission is over.  Time for pajamas.

Last product is the Vasanti BrightenUp! face exfoliator.  I was not too keen on this product.  An exfoliator?  Like with the beads and stuff?  Eh.  But a couple people on my Instagram told me it was one of their favorite things.  That’s two people in one day that told me – so naturally, I was intrigued.  The premise of this stuff is to exfoliate but also to instantly brighten the complexion.  Plus it helps with fine lines, wrinkles, scaring and large pores.  Well I don’t know about that last part, but I had the most radiant complexion of my life after using this one time.  That is not a typo.  I loved it.  The beads were ultra fine – finer than any scrub I’ve ever used – and they wiped away mostly clean.  You can use it 3-5 times a week, which makes me happy cuz when I love something I tend to smother it to death.  Just ask my daughter; she’ll tell you.

Hope you’ve had a great last day of April.  Thank you for hanging out as always, reading to the ends of my posts and whatnot.  If it wasn’t for you guys, I’d be sitting here talking to myself and that is A) weird and B) sad, so I appreciate your effort and loyalty.  See you in May!

Glossybox | April 2015

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I’ve been having a little bedtime issue with my very old cat.  Out of the blue, for whatever reason, she’s taken to walking around the top of my pillow (i.e., where most of my hair is), massaging it and purring for Jesus, for what seems like eons until she finally decides to lay down.  Occasionally she even likes to stand still for a second just long enough for me to look up straight into her butthole.  That is NEVER pleasant at 2 a.m.  And then when she does sit, all I can think about is that her butthole is on my pillow.  Where my head-slash-hair-slash-face goes.  Erlack!  Does your tummy hurt now, cuz mine sure does.

What that has to do with my Glossybox, I’ll never know.  But here it is anyway:

Um, cutest box EVER?!  Yes, ma’am.  Glossybox knocked it out this month.  It also came with a cute little makeup bag which I forgot to include in the picture.  And then I was too lazy to redo it.  In my defense it was Saturday, I was in pajamas and in the middle of a Netflix marathon.  But also because I didn’t want to.

First item is the Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar Stained Gloss in the shade New Wave.  I own a couple of regular Lip Tars and they are majorly pigmented, very bold and kind of scary for a work day.  But these stained glosses are great.  This neon vibrant pink is surprisingly very (universally) wearable because, while pigmented, it’s still somewhat sheer.  I like it!  I can’t speak for the other colors in the line – which aren’t very many compared to the regular Lip Tars – but I approve of this one.  Put it in your basket!

Very rarely do I rave on a hair product, primarily because my hair regime is slim-to-none.  But I’m very much in a passionate love affair with this Marrakesh Endz Split End Mender.  I’ve used it a few times to wet hair (ends only) and I could really tell the difference.  Hair looked less like the dirty end of a broom and more like the hair of a maiden on a galloping horse.  Granted, I would have to use my flatiron to smooth it out completely, but I could still go out in public first.  That may not be saying much since I go to Starbucks in my pajamas, but then again if I’m putting pants on during the weekend, there’s a strong possibility that’s an imposter and I’ve been kidnapped.

I have already tried a sample of the Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting serum not too long ago, and if you’d like to read my review of it, kindly click here.  If you’d like the Cliff Notes version, then I’ll tell you that this is a nice serum.  Absorbs very fast, smells good.  Probably would correct some dark spots if I could use it longer than the week the sample yields.  If you’re interested in science, you’ll be happy to know that 77% of women noticed a significant reduction of dark spots and discoloration.  That just means only 23% of women already had nice complexions and therefore they can sit right back down.  Nobody likes a winner.

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you already know I’m not a fan of perfume.  In fact, the one and only bottle of perfume I own is still sitting in my linen closet, 10 years old, and missing maybe an inch of product.  And I even liked that one (Elizabeth Arden Green Tea).  What I’m trying to tell you is, I love the packaging on this Aerin Waterlily Sun perfume.  It’s very cheerful and springy.  I almost want to use the perfume cuz I like the box it’s in.  Is that shallow?  Probably.  I checked the notes for the perfume lovers and there’s bergamot, jasmine and waterlily in it.  It smells nice.  I’m probably going to keep it.  Maybe use it on a very rare occasion.  Or maybe it’ll just sit next to the Elizabeth Arden and keep her company.  Who’s to say?

Last product is the Julep Gel Eye Glider in Bronze Shimmer.  I didn’t need another eyeliner I’ll tell you that, but I was curious about the brand’s makeup line.  So yes, it was creamy and glide (glid? glided?) well.  Color was nice.  It wasn’t anything more interesting than any other eyeliner I’ve used.  It was pretty.  It didn’t smudge on me.  But that’s about it.  I’ll keep it, but I don’t feel like rushing out to buy twelve more.  Because I’m certainly not opposed to doing that.  I have a bag full of Urban Decay 24/7 liners to prove it.

K, folks, we’re done.  You can go back to doing whatever else you do besides read this blog (you know, the unimportant stuff).  I’ll have one more post up before April 30, I swear.  So get excited if you aren’t already.  (You are.)

Ipsy | April 2015

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I need to stop finding new hobbies.  It just makes things more difficult.  I can’t be expected to blog, watch all the YouTube videos, read three different magazines (per month, currently behind), complete a 250-page book in less than a month, and watch a full array of DVR shows if I’m gonna go ahead and fudge it all up by challenging my husband to an American Horror Story marathon on Netflix.  But I did, and now we’re properly addicted, and everything I’ve come to love and hold dear has fallen very very by the wayside and I have OCD and I’m never going to get caught up because it takes me two hours to do weekend makeup just so I can sit around in my pajamas all day and also I’m breaking out in hives.

But having said all that, American Horror Story is a very good show.  Here’s my Ipsy:

 

  

Received this cute little Pandora’s blush in the shade Pink Carnation.  Not too long ago I owned a super Barbie pink one that I passed along to my mom.  This color is less bright, but it’s pretty pigmented just the same.  It came to me in a magnetic pan that I could put into my small Z Palette, but if truth be told, Z Palette space is prime real estate and I don’t know if I love the blush enough to move it in officially.  For now, yes.  But don’t get too comfy.  As soon as I decide to order Makeup Geek’s blush in the color Smitten, consider your time as UP.  

How cute is this teeny tiny theBalm Nude Dude eyeshadow sample?  Inside is the color Fit which is a rose gold type shade.  It’s creamy, buttery goodness.  I already own the Nude ‘Tude palette and I really love it.  At this point, I have managed to not purchase this sequel palette – not because I don’t think I’ll like it, but more that I’ve been buying stupidly ridiculous expensive palettes cuz I’m having a minor issue regarding designer makeup.  Such as the need to own all of it.  Well, why be obsessed if you can’t do it properly?

Someone needs to take my internet away.

The packaging on this Mullein & Sparrow lip and cheek balm is adorable.  It’s vintage-inspired and looks like it came out of a 19th century French apothecary.  I could be deathly allergic to lip balm, but I’d risk a touch of anaphylaxis just to own this, especially if you sit it in a little display right next to the credit card swiper because that’s how I end up with the majority of my unecessary items.  However, that’s where all the cuteness and need ends cuz this product is terrible.  There is absolutely no color to this “tinted” balm whatsoever.  You put it on your lips; nothing.  You put it on your cheeks; nothing but a shiny, greasy patch.  How did this stuff even get made?  And it wasn’t even that I got a dud one.  Reviews on the Ipsy site are mostly negative.  The ones who did give it a good score, I’m pretty sure they never even tried it.  They just went by packaging alone, something that I WOULD NEVER DO.  Cuz you read this blog and know that is very very true.

The MicaBeauty eye primer is alright.  Kind of similar to the MAC Paint Pot in Painterly – it lends a nice flesh-toned color to the lid and hides those ugly red and blue veins.  But the application is quite stiff.  The product did not spread well and I felt like I was tugging on my eye trying to get it to smooth out.  However, I got no creasing and my shadow wore well all day.  If I wasn’t already using and loving the Paint Pot – and if I didn’t care much about prematurely aging my own eye with all the roughhousing – I would keep this and use it from time to time.  It worked well once you got it on.

Last product in the bag is the Elizabeth Arden lipstick in Red Door Red.  The only thing good about getting this red lipstick is the value.  Full size is $25 which is well over the cost of the Ipsy subscription.  But because I don’t wear red lipstick, sadly I won’t be getting any value out of it whatsoever.  With the exception of putting it on granddaughter #1 right before dance recital pictures, and then granddaughter #2 putting it on when I turned my back for 2.5 seconds.  There may be snot and Cheetos crumbs on it now for all I know.  No matter – I’ll never use it.

Alright that’s all for now.  Getting ready to start Season 3 of American Horror Story, so excuse me while I ignore everyone and everything for the rest of the evening.  Night night!

Sample Society | April 2015

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If you are going to have a wedding anniversary gift delivered in a box to my front porch, a heads-up would be nice.  Because, while I wasn’t expecting a box to be delivered that day, having one delivered and me losing track of what’s coming when wouldn’t be entirely out of the question.  In other words, I almost opened my own gift until a last second reprieve when I glanced at the label and saw it was not addressed to me.  Then I almost opened it anyway cuz we are MARRIED and what’s his is mine – except for bills; those are just his.

My point is – my husband bought me a beautiful blue and white diamond ring, and for once I was okay with it not being a Sephora gift card.  So two years down, 48 to go.  Fine by me.

Here’s my Sample Society:

Ahhh, more perfume.  If you could see my face right now, you would mistake me for sleeping.  Oh how I wish I got excited over perfume – opening these dang boxes would be more fun I’ll tell you that.  But in an effort of fairness, I smelled this Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream and it’s pretty nice.  Notes are blackberry, grapefruit, pear, jasmine (et cetera).  Sephora says the style is ethereal, free-spirited and luminous, whatever that mean.  If I cared enough, I’d be spritzing this on right about now.  But since I don’t, I’ve put it aside to be regifted to a more loving mother.

And then there was a hair oil.  I get so nervous around them – they are like a two-times-in-one-day hair washing event bound to happen.  My hair is very fine and oils don’t play well.  But this Bumble and Bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil is supposed to be built for any hair type.  This did peak my interest, but I remained skeptical because bad things happen to good people.

Directions say it can be used on wet or dry hair.  I opted for the dry version because I’d really like to find something that will magically smooth the ends of my second day hair do.  I applied about a dime-sized drop to mid-shaft to ends and blended it in real good.  Then waited for disaster.  Surprisingly, it did not come.  My hair still felt very soft.  The oil literally absorbed right into my hair and didn’t leave any residue behind.  On the other side of the coin, however, it didn’t smooth my ends that much.  In fact, as the day wore on, my ends seemed to get tangly more than normal.  I’m going to finish the sample since it’s very tiny – maybe I’ll try it on wet hair next time – but most likely I will not repurchase.

Despite the fact that I love the Benefit POREfessional face primer, seeing it in my box was a non-event.  I mean, I’ve owned many tubes of this stuff in the past as well as all the rest of the universe.  So it’s nothing new.  Not a bad thing to receive for free, but I feel like its 15 minutes of fame is over.  However if you’d like to read my review on it, click here.  Spoiler alert:  it’s good stuff.

Look at this teeny tiny baby thing!  It’s the Jane Iredale Just Kissed Lip Plumper lipstick, and I’m pretty sure the scenario went something like this:

MARKETING:  Look how nicely sized our lipstick samples are!  Our customers are going to feel so special getting something of this size for FREE!  This could last them ages and will make them very happy!  We love our customers so much!

FINANCE:  Nope.

So literally SAMPLE size.  Try not to lose this in the washing machine.

Okay, the shade is Rio and it’s a very lovely sheer brown color.  They call it a lip plumper, but just because it has a peppermint tingle does not mean it will plump your lips.  Cuz it really doesn’t.  But the lipstick is still nice.  I’ll wear it.

At first I wasn’t into the Mt. Sapola body lotion because of its intense Lavender Chamomile (but mostly lavender) scent.  I mean, it’s fully concentrated lavender.  As in, if you don’t like lavender stay far far away.  However, I wanted to give it a try because I am a professional blogger and therefore have a reputation to uphold.  So before bed, I rubbed this on my neck and chest area (and hands, obviously) and I swear on all that is holy, this body lotion put me in a deep, deep sleep.  And now I feel like I want to buy the full size.  The smell is strong, but man is it relaxing.  That is the job of lavender in case you did not know.  If you suffer from sleep problems, I’m not saying this body lotion will cure you of insomnia, but it couldn’t hurt to try it.  Full size price is $24 for 7.5oz, which isn’t the worst I’ve ever seen.

Last item in the box could quietly go away and I’d never even care about it.  Got a little travel tin of the Illume Tonka Noir candle.  If this smelled like peaches or a coconut cream pie, I’d be all over it.  But it smells like tonka bean, and I’m not sure that’s a real thing.  It’s in the “wood” category on the Illume website, and there is a musky sandlewood base to the smell.  Then they try to spruce it up with mandarin oranges and black plum, but you don’t fool me!  It’s pretty strong, and it’s not horrid, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to own all the matching pieces.  I prefer my candles fruity or foodie.  If people walk into my house and think I baked a pie, then my job is done.  Cuz I’m never purposefully baking a pie.  But if I can fake it, that counts as cooking, which means my husband has to do the dishes.  Success!

All done.  More fun stuff coming.  Been sampling like a mad woman over here.  And buying an insane amount of stuff.  But it’s my job – as soon as someone starts paying me to do it, that is.  Bye!

Glossybox | March 2015

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I am in the midst of a Makeup Geek eyeshadow addiction and I can’t freaking stop.  I decided maybe a week ago I wanted to go ahead and own every eyeshadow they make – you know, a realistic and feasible goal, because it’s necessary to possess ALL 81 of them, even the ugly ones.  Well, why be obsessed if you can’t do it properly?  I’ve got like 19 left to purchase.  I’m insane.

Here’s my Glossybox:

 

I’m about 50/50 on this box.  Mostly usable stuff, which is good, although I didn’t love everything.  Well,  you’ll see.  Let’s review!

First thing is this Orogold 24K Multi-Vitamin Day Moisturizer.  I actually got two of them in the box.  I’m not sure if that was an accident or not but one of my other friends got two as well so maybe not.  In any case, the full size of this stuff is $178 and nothing else matters.  How shallow is that? (Very.)

So is it worth that high dollar price then?  Well, it feels nice on the skin.  Absorbs semi-quickly.  And most importantly, Demi Lovato uses it.  What more information do you need, honestly?  Seriously, does someone have a question as I believe all bases have been covered.  It’s expensive and famous people use it.  Other than that, if you need actual scientific information, you’ve stumbled upon this blog by accident.  There’s gold in it – does that help?

Next is the ModelCo More Brows brow gel.  I like and use brow gels.  No matter how perfectly coifed I think my brows are, both of them have rogue hairs in the arch that just will not behave.  And because this one is tinted, I can use it quickly without much hassle.  Similar to my love affair with Benefit’s Gimme Brow.  The part I didn’t like was that it set very quickly.  Like, while I was shaping them.  I could feel the brush kind of getting stuck in my hairs.  Not really stuck, but sticking.  This may be a benefit to some people, but not for me.  I need ample playing around time because I am anal and a perfectionist.  Some call it OCD; I call it me on a normal day.  It’s why I have to get up at the crack of dawn just to make it to work on time(ish).

Got this Bellapierre cheek and lip stain in the shade Pink.  Normally this would put me right to sleep, but I have to admit to a particular obsession for cream blushes going on about now.  I find they look more natural on cheeks riddled with cavern-like pores (like mine).  So I was actually excited for once.  This pink  shade was very much a bright, vibrant pink.  It went on naturally though, not prostitute-y at all.  It was nice.  As a lip color, though, I did not enjoy.  It looked very chalky and unflattering on me.

In the end, I kept this product in my stash for about a week then gave it away.  I knew I would never use it again.  I can’t say exactly why – there was nothing wrong with it.  Maybe I’m getting more discerning in my old age or something.  Perhaps my hoarding skills are evolving.  Either way, I passed it along to someone else who would love it and appreciate it more than me.  That’s almost 100% of me being a responsible adult.  The other 95% is me wanting to buy something else more exciting to take its place.

I was the most excited about this So Susan concealer palette.  I’ve always wanted to own something like this, even though it’s not like I couldn’t drag my ass into Target whenever I felt like it and buy one.  I mean, I don’t live in No Man’s Land or anything.  Target is literally less than a mile from my house.  I could walk there if I felt like it (but I don’t; horrible idea).  Anyway, this palette.  It’s a cutie.  And handy!  I used the medium shade to correct my dark circles and the lighter shade to brighten the under eye.  I haven’t used the white or the darkest shade cuz I’m not really sure what to do with them.  Perhaps highlight and contour?  Maybe so.

Performance-wise, this isn’t a bad concealer quad, and the coverage is about average for me.  You do need to warm up the pan with your finger before applying it, otherwise it’s too dry to smooth out properly.  I blended mine with a brush and it worked out pretty well.  I do have better concealers and correctors, but for now I’m going to continue using the quad as just another option in my ever-rotating roster of products.

Last item in the box is the Nexxus Color Assure shampoo which I promptly gave away since my hair is not colored.  I probably could’ve used it anyway – it’s not like my hair would’ve fallen out or anything (I don’t think).  But my mom has colored hair, so I knew she would get the most benefit out of it.  I was reading some reviews online in an effort to give you some information about the product (cuz PROFESSIONAL) and man oh man do people not like this shampoo!  Seriously, go look it up on Walmart.com or even the Nexxus website itself.  It’s laughable how terrible people say this is.  I almost wish I could get the shampoo back from my mom so I could find out for myself.  But then I’d probably end up having to wash my hair twice in one day, and lord knows how much that doesn’t need to happen.  I mean, if I want to accomplish anything else in my life, that is.

Welp, we’re done with March.  I’m going to do everything I possibly can to make April more better.  If I can keep my nose out of YouTube long enough that is.  You know how it is – var var busy always and forever.  Bye!

Birchbox | March 2015

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March is quickly coming to an end, which means my second wedding anniversary will be here in less than a month.  Which also means first day of pampering starts April 1 and lasts for approximately 30 days (i.e., the rest of his life).  I’m sure he had no idea being married to me was going to be so hard.  I mean, I have an extraordinary amount of pajama lounging scheduled for the next 50 years (aka var var busy), so who’s doing the dishes?  Who’s buying the Sephora gift cards?  Isn’t that why we have husbands in the first place?  Pretty sure that’s written in a rule book somewhere. 

Here’s my Birchbox:

 

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I already own a little sample of the Cover|FX BB Gel but I was alright in getting another one because of how much I like the product.  However, my previous one is in the shade N Medium (perfect) and this new one is in the shade N Light (not perfect).  So it won’t work.  Bit of a bummer really, and even worse, I don’t know anybody with lighter skin than me that can use it.  So I have this full tube of product and nowhere to go with it.  Tossing it in the trash makes my heart practically stop beating.  In other words, thank you Birchbox for putting me in the midst of this emotional conundrum.  I can literally feel the struggle in my chest.  I need a gift card for pain and suffering.  I don’t see any other way around it.
 

But back to the product.  It’s a very nice BB cream.  One of the better ones I’ve used.  Has really great coverage, nice matte finish, and it blends in very well.  I’d consider buying a full tube of it if I didn’t already have 27 other foundations to get through before they all expire.  I’ll admit I didn’t plan that out very well.  I’m debating on the scientific repercussions of using an expired foundation.  If it doesn’t stink or have mold in the lid, I think it would be safe.  I’m probably wrong and about to run head first into a face-falling-off scenario.  However, I’ll risk it because DIOR. CHANEL. GUCCI.  I’m sorry, what is your question?

Lookie, it’s our good friend Harvey Prince with yet ANOTHER perfume sample for me, this time called Sincerely.  No disrespect to Harvey Prince by any means, but can you kindly quit sending your sample perfumes to every beauty box I subscribe to?  How many does this make now, 18, 19?  That’s not even a typo.  I think they’ve sent me all of them.  Even the people I give them to are getting tired.  They’re like, Harvey Prince, again?  We share a nice, communal eye roll moment, so if anything, HP brings people together.  But other than that, unless I’m going for a world record or something, I’m pretty much done with the perfume.

But for those who need to know, here are the notes:  Indian tuberose, Turkish cyclamen (otherwise knows as that’s not a thing), and Spanish mandarin.  Sounds pretty exotic, a little spicy, a bit sweet.  If that’s your thing, maybe you should give this a try.  Mom used it and she said it did not smell that great on first spritz, but after the dry-down, it was nice.  I agreed.  It didn’t stink.  That’s my formal review for you: it didn’t stink.

Best thing in the box is this Mirenesse Glossy Kiss lipstick in Cheeky Kiss.  What a pretty pink nude.  Super creamy, good color payoff.  Wasn’t particularly long lasting, nor was it overwhelmingly glossy, but it was not drying at all.  I liked it so much, I tossed it in my already overflowing lipstick bag I carry in my purse cuz it’s a color that will go with just about everything.  Now, they say this doubles as a cheek stain as well.  I’m not really interested in going that route with it I don’t think.  But it’s an option for you if you are so inclined.

I’m not gonna lie: kind of scared of the Amika Bombshell Blowout Spray.  Anytime I get a volumizing hair product, I cringe.  My hair is fine with grease-prone roots.  I need to be spraying shit in there like I need someone to take away my Visa card (i.e., I DON’T).  So obviously I haven’t used this yet.  But I intend to.  I’m going to give it a try this week actually, bite the bullet, take a risk.  I’ve been reading the reviews and some people say it makes their hair sleek, shiny and smooth and others say specifically not to put it on your roots even though the directions tell you to.  Other things I read that perked my interest: cuts drying time down (Cuz who has 15 years handy to stand around blow drying hair? Not me.  See first paragraph where I mention all the pajama lounging I have scheduled.  It’s lots.), non-greasy (we’ll see about that), and lightweight.  Things that scared the bejeebus out of me:  sticky and greasy (But what about the non-greasy claim?  See why I’m pertrified?!), and they couldn’t tell a difference (then what is the point?).  In general though, people seem really pleased with it.  So I’m gonna give it a go for my people.  Cuz PROFESSIONAL.  Also CRAZY.

A couple of boring items finish out the box. It’s the Number 4 Clarifying shampoo and Reconstructing Masque.  I say boring cuz it’s just shampoo and a hair mask.  I’m not against them or anything – I mean, I use shampoo (and sometimes masks), primarily cuz society says it’s required. And the HR Department.  But it’s never anything that exciting.  Unless it’s something that can cut out blow drying and styling completely, these are just basic necessities for me.

Having said that, though, the shampoo is the clarifying kind which is meant to use weekly to remove all the build up from the hair.  Because I don’t use much by way of styling products, I assume there isn’t much build up anyway, but it really does make my hair feel very clean.  There’s just something about putting clear shampoo into your hair that makes you feel like you’ve done something good for the environment.  That makes absolutely no sense.  Shut up, Brain.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is I’m not opposed to buying a full size of this although I could probably find a drugstore equivalent that doesn’t cost me $32.

As for the mask, it was okay.  Nice and thick, which I prefer because I’ve had the other kind and it felt like it disappeared right into my hair.  There was nothing spectacular or game-changing about it though, not even the smell left much of an impression, so I’m glad (for once) I got a single-use packet instead of something bigger.

We’ve reached the end and now it’s nap time.  Thanks for stopping by today.  I have one last review left for March, and then I’m going to stop being so darn boring.  I keep finding new things to entertain me (new YouTubers, mainly) and it’s encroaching on proper blog time.  I promise to do better.  If anyone wants to send gift cards for good wishes, just let me know.  Bye!

Ipsy | March 2015

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I’ve successfully sent a slew of packages to my house to make up for the fact that all my beauty boxes were sent to me on the same day.  Well, you know how it is.  Getting mail is exciting.  But when the only guaranteed fun parts arrive on the same day, what is left for the rest of the month?  So I talked to my friends at Sephora, Macy’s, Makeup Geek and Amazon and we collectively came up with a solution.

Someone needs to take away my internet.

Here’s my Ipsy:

 

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This bag is not so much.  Let me explain:

If I see another pur~lisse product in one more box, I might have to karate chop somebody in the throat.  How many times has this happened in the past year?  Like 18 times now or something?  On the plus side, I didn’t get another moisturizer or sunscreen, but the pur~lisse pur~delicate soy milk cleanser.  And I needed a new cleansing milk so I suppose it all worked out in the end.  But prior to that, it was a serious non-event.

I’ve been using this the past few days and it’s alright I guess.  Nothing overwhelming.  I don’t think it’s an actual cleansing milk that is used to remove makeup before you clean your face.  It’s intended to be your cleanser.  But I’ve chosen to use it the wrong way since its lotion-type consistency doesn’t make me feel cleansed, but more “pre-cleansed” instead.  I’m sure I’m overreacting because of my disdain for receiving yet another pur~lisse product in my box.  Had this tube sported a Dior sticker on it or something, I probably would like it more.  I admit that’s shallow and very, very wrong.  Well, I’ve never claimed otherwise.  I own a foundation that cost me $78 for no other reason.  I am ridiculous and I know it.  Not. Ashamed. (Well, maybe a little.)

Perhaps the worst sample in the box is this Gilchrist & Soames body lotion.  Seriously, if I had a bout of insomnia, this lotion would cure that right up.  I mean, look at it.  Did someone steal this from a hotel amenities tray?  Probably.  We may wanna call the Hyatt to see if they’ve been missing about 400,000 bottles of lotion, suspiciously.  You know, just in case there is a monetary reward at stake.  I didn’t even smell this lotion.  I just quietly tossed it in my regift pile and moved on to the next, less tragic, thing.

At first glance, I wasn’t even sure what this Evelyn Iona product was.  Ipsy doesn’t include informational cards like all my other boxes do, one of the things I’d mention on a survey if Ipsy ever sent out surveys.  No, I had to do my own research where I discovered it was a concealer.  They sent me the shade Flawless (medium ivory), which is nice because it was actually a good color for me.  However, it’s a pretty basic concealer.  Nothing mindblowing, but I don’t hate it.  I’ve used it several times and it has decent coverage for me.  Good texture.  Doesn’t crease, but of course I set it with powder, so that helps.  I’ll hold onto it for a little while, rotate it amongst my other concealers until I get bored with it.  I mean, at this point this is the best thing in the box, so better enjoy it as best I can.

As you can see, the little Vintage Cosmetics Illuminating Face Highlighter thing came to me broken.  Like broken beyond repair, or at least beyond the amount of effort I’d want to put into repairing it.  Contacted Ipsy and they sent out a fresh one, and I must say it’s a very beautiful little highlighter.  It’s a brilliant pink, angelic and lovely.  It’s pretty shimmery though, so if you’re old like me, it may be too much for the face.  Aside from highlighting, suggested uses are as a blush or a blush topper.  Even an eyeshadow, which is most likely how I’ll wear it.  I like to play it safe sometimes.  Other times I like to wear full glam face and pajamas to Starbucks.  But mostly I’m appropriate.  Mostly.

Last product in the box is the NYX Cosmetics Butter lipstick in the shade Pops, a nice mauve nude.  This is a really pretty color and the formula of this lipstick is to die for.  Butter is the perfect word to describe it – it’s so smooth and soft and feels light and soothing on the lips.  I own one of these lipsticks already, and I was all prepared to own another one.  But then naturally, obviously, and of course-ly, out of the 27 different shade selections, I get sent the one and only one shade I already own.  Is that even a mathematical probability?  Will I get struck by lightning next?  Should I just roll around in a cocoon made of bubble wrap for the rest of my life?  Because I’m pretty sure luck like that isn’t supposed to happen.  Someone did some voodoo on me, I just know it.  Other than that, I highly recommend these lipsticks.  They’re lovely.  

Thanks for hanging out today and for reading this post all the way to the end.  Internet hugs for you.  I’ll be back again tomorrow with more fun stuff.  You can’t wait! (Seriously, you can’t.)

Sample Society | March 2015

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Naturally after I get completely caught up with all my delayed February posts, every single March beauty box subscription I own gets delivered to me on the same day.  Of course!  So now I’m officially behind again.  Whhhyyyyyyeee?!?!  Not only that, but now I won’t be getting any more packages in the mail, which means there’s nothing to look forward to when I get home from work aside from TV, couch and pajamas.  Guess I’m gonna have to online shop.  What choice do I have?  (Zero.)

Here’s my Sample Society:   image

Number one product to give away is the Oscar Blandi Pronto Texture & Volume Spray.  There isn’t anything wrong with it; I’m sure it’s lovely.  I just don’t want it.  My hair routine is virtually non-existent.  Unless you count combing and leave-in conditioner as a routine.  That’s all I have patience for.  Everything else just scares me.  I’ve tried too many of those volumizer products, only to be left with a sticky-up hair nightmare and the need to shampoo twice.  I did read about the product though so I can at least provide something useful to you.  Here’s what I found out:

It’s a dry texturizing spray to make sexy, tousled undone hair.  Like bed head, but on purpose.  Now, if I had a hipper, flashier hairstyle – besides this plain, straight one I’ve been sporting for the past 9 years – a product like this might interest me.  But until someone invents a 10 a.m. start to the work day, I’m gonna have to pass.  I don’t have time to do makeup AND hair.

Number two product to give away is the Juice Beauty Green Apple Age Defy Moisturizer.  Well, maybe give away.  I received a tube of this in a previous box which I haven’t used yet.  If it amazes me, I might keep this second tube.  It’s a brightening moisturizer suitable for dark spots, hyperpigmentation, and uneven skin tone and texture.  I have all those things.  So technically, this is my most ideal moisturizer.  I was reading the review on the Allure website, and it says it creates a pretty glow on the face.  My cat ears definitely perked up at that because who doesn’t love a glowy face?  But then it said it’s best kept in the refrigerator because of the vitamin C in it.  Excuse me, whaaa … ?  I have to store my moisturizer in the fridge now?  I’ll tell you right now, I’m not doing that.  I don’t have time to fix my hair in the morning (as we’ve just discussed) much less walk myself to the refrigerator every morning.  Seriously, I’ll just take my chances.

Next item is a very pretty red-orange Cargo Essential Lipgloss in the shade Rio.  It’s a really great color for summer, especially against tan skin.  It’s a pretty sheer formula, but the color shows up well.  How they managed that is pure hocus pocus.  Or at least in the experiences I’ve had.  I didn’t get super sticky lips, which is a plus, and it’s nice and glossy.  What else can I say about a lipgloss other than that?  Turns out, not much so we’re moving on.

This would be my second tube of the Malin + Goetz Mojito Lip Balm and I’m pretty alright with that.  I love this lip balm.  It’s one of the best ones I’ve used for my chronic straggly lip skin.  I did a previous review on it, so click here if you’d like to read it. (You do.)  Everything I said still stands.  And I will use this new tube with the same level of enthusiasm as the first – perhaps with more so, since now I know exactly how much I love it.

Last and number three product to give away is the Benefit Roller Lash mascara.  This is the newest mascara offered by Benefit, and I really really like it.  I’m giving it away because this is my second sample, plus I already bought the full size.  My mascara drawer is prime real estate, so it’s best to save those slots for non-repeats.  Anyway, Sephora sent me a sample of this a couple weeks before the mascara officially launched (VIP, yo).  I went into it with high expectations cuz everything I had read told me to.  It was supposed to curl your lashes and make them stay curled without the need for an eyelash curler.  Seeing that I don’t even use an eyelash curler, this part made me giddy.  Cuz again, I don’t have time in the mornings to fiddle with my hair, grab moisturizer out of the refrigerator OR curl my eyelashes before I put on mascara.  Unless I get up a 4 a.m., and if I’m doing that, there better be a plane I’m catching to the Caribbean or something.

The brush is pretty cool.  It’s called the Hook ‘n’ Roll, and it’s designed to catch and lift your lashes, even the tiny, straight ones.  And if you want my honest opinion (and you do, otherwise, you might’ve stumbled upon this blog by accident), it does a pretty good job.  Mind you, it’s not a miracle mascara.  Like, I can achieve a lifted up, wide-eyed look with other mascaras, but because the Roller Lash says it specifically does it, and then follows through like a proper lady, I went ahead and bought the full size.  But I don’t want 17 tubes of it, so this sample is going to my mom.

Alright, one down three to go.  Plus I have a Buying Stuff I’d like to squish in as well.  I may be having a slight panicky moment over here.  Blogging overwhelms me sometimes because no one is paying me to do it, and let’s face it, money fuels most of the activity that keeps me from pajamas.  You want me to work?  Cut me a paycheck.  Want me to take you to get a haircut?   Then I’m going to Sephora across the street (and you’ll have to walk over when you’re done).  Want me to exercise and drink more water?  Looks like I need some new yoga pants.  I’m sorry, it’s the truth.  It’s basic mathematics.

Bye y’all!

Glossybox | February 2015

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Well lookie there.  Time got away from me again.  I feel like at this point no one really cares what I got in my February Glossybox because it’s freaking March now and we’ve all moved on.  I’m blaming this sheer lack of organization on the fact that I was forced to go to Disneyland for work.  And Daylight Savings Time stole an hour from me.  That’s where my blogging time went.  On Sunday morning about 2 a.m. when the clocks changed.

Regardless, here’s my Glossybox anyway:

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First item in the box is this ginormous bottle of Rituals Yogi Flow shower gel.  This stuff is exactly like shaving cream, but it’s body wash instead.  Of course, you could use it to shave your legs if you want to – there are no rules with shaving cream, ya know.  Otherwise, I’d have a stack of lonely conditioner samples collecting dust underneath my bathroom counter.  But as a body wash, it’s pretty nice.  Rich, thick, smells good.  Ummm, what else?  Rinses clean.  Full size costs $15, and it’ll last you a good while since you need just half a dollop to get a good lather going.  Not sure if I’d buy it on my own, but that’s only cuz I don’t have a thing for shower gels like I do for mascara or blush.  Shower gel is a necessity in life, not a luxury.  So unless you come in a wicker basket with matching lotion, spritzer, and a loofah, then chances are I’ll use you then forget about you.  (I know.  I’m a horrible girlfriend.)

Got this Unwash Cleansing Conditioner, and it peaked my interest for about 2.5 seconds.  Then I realized it’s one of those shampoos that isn’t real shampoo, just a conditioner that claims to clean your hair “just like” a shampoo but in reality ends up frustrating me because it won’t lather and my brain doesn’t understand why.  You know the kind.  I can’t do these, y’all.  My hair is too fine for a conditioner to go all over my head and in my roots.  And not only that, I have no control over how much I use.  If you don’t lather up, how will I know when I’m done?  (Answer:  I don’t.)  I keep going and going until half the tube is gone, and my hair has this horrible dirty film in it for three days because I refuse to wash it more than twice a week.  It’s an exhausting ordeal for an already exhausting ordeal.  In other words: NO. THANK YOU.

This post is spiraling all to hell.  Cuz next is the Julep nail polish in Hartleigh, and I’ve already given it away.  It’s such a cutesy little thing though, what with all it’s glitter and hearts and sparkles and such.  But if I can’t tolerate polishing my nails with a normal nail polish, why would I dive right in with a polish with chunky bits in it that threatens my OCD with every swipe?  Cuz if you’ve ever used polish with bits in it, you know those bits don’t lay down and behave themselves.  They go wherever they want to, and sometimes they want to lay ON TOP of other bits and leave naked spots with no bits, and if you suffer with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, you’ve got the hives right now like nobody’s business.  Breathe.

But having said all that, if you adore polishes like this, I’m sure you’ll love Hartleigh.  It really is a pretty “color” and would make a lovely topcoat for someone with more patience and less mental illness than me.

Let’s try to stay positive, shall we?  This Teadora Rainforest at Dawn exfoliating bar soap seems promising.  Yes, it falls under the “necessities” category, but I’ve already decided I’m not going to use it as a body wash.  It’s my new foot wash.  Spring is coming and then there’s summer, so I need my heels to be soft like baby skin.  Also the pinky toe that pokes out the side of my strappy shoes because it’s too itty bitty to stay put inside – it needs a little TLC too.  Not only that, but my big toe dries out easily in the summer because it’s the one sitting in the peep toe for all the world to see.  I’m thinking this soap, because it exfoliates with its clay ingredients and acai seeds, should do me some good.  In preparation for my first use, I have purchased a turquoise peacock soap dish home for it.  Hopefully I love it cuz that dish cost me $12.  Don’t worry; I’ll let you know.

Last item in the box is the most adorable little thing.  It’s a Royal Apothic Tinties lip butter in the shade Pink, and it comes in this precious tiny pot that I’d swear was pulled from the pocket of some mystical Indian princess. It’s lovely. As for the lip balm, welllll, it’s lip balm. Nothing wrong with it, but it’s pretty basic. This is one of those cases where you’re judging a book by it’s cover. You own it cuz it’s pretty, not because the lip balm has magical transforming powers. Or at least on my lips, it doesn’t. I’m still glad I own it though. Because packaging will suck me in, even if I know there’s a dog turd inside. Cuz I need that beribboned box with Eiffel Towers stamped all over it, dontcha know?

Okay, gang, that’s it. I just opened my mailbox and my March Glossybox has already arrived. So, what perfect timing. I’m going to make a better effort this month with my blogging, I promise. Next up: an Empties post. Just giving you heads-up in case you need to cancel some plans.

Birchbox | February 2015

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I’m stressed.  After my trip to LA and a very disastrous weekend drive to St. Louis (in snow, 5 hours, with a 4 year old), my husband and I have approximately 57 hours of TV shows stored on the DVR that need to GO AWAY.  Does anyone else feel claustrophobic when this happens?  Does anyone else get a perverse sense of accomplishment when the DVR is clean and tidy?  No, just me?  Figures.

What I’m trying to say is, while I had every intention of putting up my final two February box reviews prior to the end of February (as expected), you can blame this scheduling fiasco on DirecTV and the fact a DVR actually exists.  Dang you, Technology!  What happened to the good old days when I tried to tape a week’s worth of All My Children and Regis & Kelly on two rotating VHS tapes, get them all confused on which tape has which newest episode, and then finally say FECK IT and stop watching television altogether because my OCD had hit its breaking point?

Did you get the hives just now, cuz I sure did.  Here’s my Birchbox:

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Got this Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Cleanser, which lately I’ve been needing.  My face was looking pretty good about a week ago, until my left cheek started a riot right in the middle of Disneyland.  Like literally I had zero zits walking in and one zit walking out.  Whyyyyyeeeee?  Where is your loyalty?!  I wash you, moisturize you, pamper the ever-lovin’ shit out of you, and this is how I am repaid.  Left Cheek:  we are no longer friends.

Anyway, it’s clearing up pretty good now, but it’s the second time in that exact same spot within the past month that I got a pimple.  What are the odds of that?  There may be a scientific mathematical ratio equation in there somewhere, considering how much face I have.  So as soon as I finish up my current cleanser, I’ll go ahead and give this one a go.  See if it helps me not break out.  Cuz if there’s one thing that ruins a flawless, supermodel-type complexion, it’s a dadgum zit.  I’m 40.  It’s time to stop it.

Then there is the Gilchrist & Soames Spa Therapy Sea Wrack body wash.  First of all, to get the obvious question out of the way, what is Sea Wrack?  I looked it up for the sake of this blog, and sometimes I think I should just be less professional.  Cuz sea wrack is detached seaweed that is thrown up by the sea, and which is often used to make manure, or in this case, a soap that you rub all over your body.  There are two terrible things in that sentence; if you have to guess what they are, well I admire your knack for ignoring unpleasantries.  I, on the other hand, am on the verge of a panic attack.

But despite all that and strangely enough, this body wash smells so wonderful.  It reminds me of a chlorine swimming pool, but in more of a beachy way.  And it suds up like a champ.  I liked it a lot and quite possibly want a full size of it.  We just won’t mention that poop thing ever never again.

Next is a theBalm Read My Lips lip gloss in the color Bam!  There isn’t a whole lot I can say here other than it’s a typical lip gloss.  Pretty nude pink shade.  Not sticky.  Doesn’t stink.  It’s not a holy grail product, though.  If I lost it in an airport, I wouldn’t cause a TSA nightmare-inducing scenario.  (Unlike my near-miss with the Marc Jacobs one I left on the conveyor belt in Las Vegas and realized at the very last minute, right before some stranger almost put it in their pocket – I’ll karate chop you in throat over that; I highly DO. NOT. RECOMMEND.)

Totally in love with the BeautyBlender I got as I have been meaning to get myself a backup.  I love using a BeautyBlender to apply foundation.  I don’t use it all the time because I feel it needs to be cleaned like almost constantly, but it does give a nice effect on the skin.  Airbrushed and flawless, or as flawless as I can get with a giant red angry zit on my left cheek.  But in any case, if you’ve never tried a BeautyBlender before, I approve so go ahead and put it in your basket.  I am the boss of you.  We’ve been over this.

It did come with a little disc of cleanser, which I have not used yet.  Just looks like a bar of soap or something.  A little messy as it does not come with a covered soap dish, which I don’t understand.  Who uses bar soap all willy nilly like that?  (Crazy people.)  But it’s specially made to be used with the BeautyBlender so I imagine it should spiff it up rather nicely.  We’ll see.  I’ll use it even if I have to wrap it up in Saran Wrap afterwards like a damn hobo.

Last but not least is this packet of BeeKind conditioner.  What is missing, you ask? Why, its shampoo packet buddy of course!  What is the point of sending just the conditioner?  Seriously, who does this benefit?  Certainly not my hair since I’ll never even use it up there.  Looks like Birchbox sent me shaving cream then, cuz that’s all lonely conditioner packets are good for – shaving my legs.  It’s actually a pretty good deal.  At this point, I rarely buy real shaving cream cuz of all the conditioner leftovers I own.  That’s called SAVING MONEY, and anytime saving money is involved, there’s a Sephora haul not too far away.

So here we are at the end of yet another post.  Thank you so much for putting up with me and making it all the way to the bottom like a true friend.  Y’all are the best, I swear.  Have a great rest of your day and I’ll be back again (hopefully) tomorrow with my last February review – in March, but until there’s a Blog Police, I do what I want.  Toodles!