Birchbox Unboxing! May 2014

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This is my second month subscribed to Birchbox so I thought I would do an unboxing post for the May box!

1. The first item is from Cynthia Rowley Beauty and it is a silver eyeliner described as “A luxe, creamy liner from the NYC-based designer for smudge-proof, all-day wear.”

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It is a very pretty and pigmented silver eyeliner that glided on smoothly when testing on my hand.

2. The second item is from Gilchrist and Soames and it is their Spa Therapy Body Lotion. Described as “Rich in marine extracts, this paraben-free moisturizer leaves skin smooth, soft, and calm.”

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It has a nice fresh scent and after testing it on my hand, it absorbed into my skin well and was not sticky.

3. Item #3 is from Marcelle and is their BB Cream Golden Glow described as “A multitasker from the Chicago-founded brand rich in antioxidants and hydrating aloe.” It also says that it is suitable for all skin types.

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When I opened the cap on this I was  nervous about the color as it appeared quite dark, but after trying it out and blending the product out the color wasn’t an issue and it disappeared into my skin. When looking closely the product also contains some shimmer.

4. The 4th item is from Number 4 High Performance Hair Care and is their Volumizing Shampoo. As a bonus birch box also added in a sample of their volumizing condition (not a typo, it actually says it is called “volumizing condition” on the packaging). This item is described as a “sulfate-free, botanical-rich cleanser [that] creates bouncy, bodacious hair.”

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I like to save shampoo and conditioner samples for when I travel, so I will probably wait until the next time I’m traveling to try these out. I’m always looking for volumizing hair products though, so I am excited to try them!

5. The “Lifestyle extra” in this month’s box is from SmartyPants and is their All-in-One Gummy Vitamins for Adults. Birchbox says “These delicious gummies provide essential nutrients without artificial flavors.” The normal daily dose is six tummies. This package contains two gummies. vitamins.jpg

I tried these already and they tasted good – a bit tart but also sweet. I always forget to take my vitamins so this could be a good alternative that I would actually look forward to every day. But at $29.95 for a month’s supply it is an expensive option compared to “regular” vitamins which I normally buy in bulk from Costco.

Overall, I’m pretty happy with this month’s Birchbox. I do wish the eyeliner had come in a more wearable color. There was also an eyeliner in my Birchbox last month and a cc cream, so I would prefer a bit more variety in the products provided from month to month.

Are you interested in signing up for Birchbox? You can sign up here!

Have you tried Birchbox before or another subscription beauty box? Let me know in the comments!

My favorite Scrub! Goldfaden MD Doctor’s Scrub – Ruby Crystal Microderm Exfoliator- Review

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My favorite facial scrub at the moment is Doctor’s Scrub from Goldfaden MD. I had never heard of this brand or this scrub until I received a sample in the mail with some other products I ordered online. I think this is the first product I’ve ever been convinced to buy from one of those free samples. I tried it once and was blown away.

The description reads “Dr. Goldfaden’s coveted exfoliator contains powerful Ruby Crystals that provide immediate cell renewal by polishing away dead surface cells, leaving skin brighter, clearer and younger-looking. Formulated with line-filling Hyaluronic Acid, this product delivers long-lasting hydration while nourishing Seaweed and Organic Red Tea Extracts provide antioxidant protection. Daily use improves the appearance of fine lines, reduces pore size, and leaves behind healthy, radiant skin.”

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It’s a very fine scrub, so if you have very sensitive skin it may not be right for you, but if you don’t mind that type of scrub then I would definitely recommend it. I find with scrubs that just have a few beads or larger pieces that they don’t do much. I tend to get dry skin on my nose, as I use more drying products on my nose. Scrubs that aren’t as fine don’t seem to do anything to help remove dry/dead skin in that area, but this scrub does a great job at exfoliating. It leaves my skin feeling very soft and all of the dead skin is gone. I use it about 2 times a week depending on how my skin is doing. If you have dry or flaky skin that doesn’t seem to be helped by most exfoliators, I would definitely give this product a try.

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I only have two complaints about this scrub. One is the packaging. It’s a screw off cap and the product is in a tub. I don’t really mind the tub, although a squeeze tube would have been easier, but a screw off cap for this type of product is terrible. The jar can be difficult to open. Also, some of the scrub has ended up on the sides of the cap, which has made it even more difficult to open and close.

The other issue is the price. It is expensive at $75, a lot more money then I normally like to pay for this type of product. But, I have been using it for a while and a little product goes a long way. The jar isn’t huge, but I think you could make it last for quite a long time, especially if only using it 1-2 times a week in small amounts.

Also, you can definitely find a discount on this product! I picked this up from SkinStore.com. If you search around online you can almost always find a good coupon for this website. When I purchased this I had a 20% off coupon, and they actually have a 20% off coupon right now, S8U88LE8Y, which is good until 10/31. I found this code by searching on RetailMeNot.com. Retail Me Not also has an app, I’ve started getting into the habit of checking it before I buy anything and I’ve found some great coupons on there! SkinStore.com also has a high cash back percentage from Ebates, right now they have 12% cash back! So if you plan to buy anything from that site definitely make sure you use Ebates!

Overall, even though there are some issues with the packaging and it is quite expensive, I definitely think the product is worth it, especially if you can manage to find a coupon or discount.

 

How often do you exfoliate? What’s your favorite scrub (face, body, or both!)? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish of the Week #8 – Topshop Tidal – Swatches and Review

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This week’s nail polish is Topshop’s Tidal.

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It is a very light blue that leans a bit gray. I don’t have any other nail polish that is similar to Tidal. When I picked this color up I thought it might be too white or too light, but on the nails I am absolutely loving it and it is very wearable.

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It is a bit of a thicker consistency, but it applied well and was opaque in two coats. I would definitely recommend this color!

What nail polish have you been wearing this week? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish No Buy Update – one week!

Nail Polish of the Week #7 – Topshop Eclipse – Swatches and Review

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This week’s nail polish is Topshop’s Eclipse.

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It’s a green blue metallic duochrome polish. It is gorgeous, I am obsessed with this color!

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It applied well and dried quickly. It was also opaque after two coats!

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So pretty!

What nail polish have you been wearing this week? What is your favorite kind of duochrome? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish No Buy Update – I broke my no buy! I might do a haul post with the nail polish I picked up though.

Nail Polish of the Week #6 – Topshop Moonshine

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This week’s nail polish is Topshop’s Moonshine. It’s a rose gold metallic polish. It’s a beautiful color and I really don’t have anything else in my nail polish collection that is very similar to it.

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Moonshine applied well. It was opaque after one coat, but I did two thin coats to make it look a bit more even. It is a metallic polish so it does have somewhat visible brushstrokes, but I find that happens with every metallic polish I try.

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What nail polish have you been wearing this week? Do you like metallic polishes? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish No Buy Update – 3 weeks since I last bought nail polish!

Glossybox Best of Britain Unboxing

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I’ve never ordered anything from Glossybox, or any of the subscription beauty box companies, but when I got an email about this Limited Edition Best of Britain box, I couldn’t resist! I was really missing London (I studied abroad in London for a semester this past year).

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I’m really happy with and excited to try all of the products that came in the box.

1. Nails Inc. – Kensington Caviar Top Coat – .33 fl. oz / $18.20

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I’m very excited to try this. I have a set of Nails Inc. Polish that I got at Sephora a while ago, and I’m really happy with it, so it is a brand that I like. I’ve been wanting to try out a new top coat too, and this one claims to dry in 45 seconds!

2. Nailgirls London – White #1 – .33 fl. oz / $12.90

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I don’t own any white nail polish. I’m not sure how often I would actually wear white nail polish, and I kind of wish this was a different color, but I’ll try it out. I’m sure this would be good to have for layering with other polishes too. I’ll find a use for it! Maybe OPI’s Polka.com glitter polish from the Euro Centrale collection will look good over a white base.

3. MeMeMe Cosmetics – Beat the Blues Skin Illuminator – .41 fl. oz/ $8.30

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I can’t wait to try this one out. I haven’t opened it yet, but the way it looks in the bottle is reminding me of Benefit High Beam, which is a product I love. (Also Sephora has 8% cash back right now from Ebates!)

4. Mitchell and Peach – Luxury Hand Cream – 2.1 fl oz/ $26

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With Fall and Winter approaching it will be nice to have an extra handcream lying around. I usually go for Hand Food from Soap and Glory, also a British brand! I went a bit Soap and Glory crazy when I was in London, while they sell some of the products in the US at Sephora, such as Hand Food, there are a lot more products available in the UK…and I took full advantage of that!

5. Steamcream – All-In-One Natural Moisturizer for Face, Body, & Hands – 2.65 oz/ $19.50

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The description says this cream can be used on the face, hands, and body. The tin is a good size, but I think it’s too small to use as a body cream. I plan on using it on face at night for now, and maybe on my hands if I don’t like it for my face I really love the packaging. I checked out the company’s website and you the tins come in all these different designs! Also, when I selected shipping to the US, the site said they have free worldwide delivery! If I like this I would definitely consider picking up one of these fun tins!

6. HD Brows – Grow Baby Grow – $46.50

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This was the product I was most excited to see in the box. I’ve had a long struggle with my eyebrows. The ends of my eyebrows, farthest from my nose, are almost nonexistent due to some over plucking, and now they just don’t want to grow back and the few hairs that do grow look odd. I’m really hoping this helps, I would love to have fuller brows.

7. Helen É Cosmetics – Lasting Lip Colour in Raspberry- .12 oz/ $12.20

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I’m not sure about this product, it is quite a dark color. I don’t own any lipsticks this dark, I’ll have to think of a look to wear with it. It will be a nice color for fall and winter though.

8. Batiste Dry Shampoo – Batiste Dry Shampoo Blush – 1.6 fl. oz/ $2.30

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This is the best dry shampoo I have ever tried in my life, and I’ve tried quite a few. I have blond hair that gets very greasy very fast at the roots, and this product fixes it instantly. It adds volume and makes my hair feel fresh again if it’s been a day since I washed it. I like to lift up my bangs and spray a bit under them, and then spray a bit on my scalp at my part and my hair looks great again. I know this product is available in the US, but I didn’t know about it or use it until I was studying abroad in London. I loved it so much, and it was so reasonably priced that I ended up buying a second bottle, one in this scent blush, and one in the original. I’m going to save this travel size for the next time I go on vacation. I would like to mention that the blush scent, while nice, is quite strong, so just be aware of that if you decide to pick up one of the scented versions.

There was also a bonus item! A small makeup case!

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I’m really happy with this box overall. The real test will be when I actually try out all of the products, but in general I’m really impressed. The packaging was amazing. From the insert that explained all of the product information, to the tissue paper, to the box that contained the products. Even the shipping box was cute!

I am definitely going to consider subscribing to Glossybox, or at least get a limited edition or normal monthly box every once in a while. The limited edition box cost $40 and I think it was a great value for the money. The normal monthly boxes cost $21, and is less per month if you subscribe for more months. Ebates also has a cash back deal available right now, you can get $2.75 back if you order from Glossybox and use Ebates!

Have you ever tried Glossybox or other similar subscription makeup boxes? What do you think about them, are they worth it? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish of the Week #5 – Topshop Flamingo Coral

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This week’s nail polish is Topshop’s Flamingo Coral. It’s a bright coral, more on the pink side. The formulation is okay, but not great. It applied almost opaque in one coat, but did not apply evenly so multiple coats were needed. It’s just a little too thick, which makes it a difficult to apply.

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The color is gorgeous though, it makes the difficulty in application worth it.

This will probably be the last time I wear coral nail polish this summer. While I love corlas, I like the darker colors I usually wear in the Fall and Winter even more. I can’t wait to start wearing them again!

What nail polish have you been wearing this week? Do you prefer darker fall colors, or bright spring and summer colors when it comes to nail polish? Let me know in the comments!

Nail Polish No Buy Update – 2 weeks since I last bought nail polish!