Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Subscription Haul and Review: July Beauty Box 5

I've mentioned in a post before that out of all my subscription boxes, Beauty Box 5 is my least favorite. I feel like the past few months, they were sending very similar products in the boxes. They were mostly small sample sizes too. I find that I end up enjoying very few of the products coming from there. Additionally, the subscription is $12/month while Ipsy(subscription that it's most comparable to), is only $10. I feel like it wasn't worth it. I was gonna cancel my membership but when I went to the website, the server was down and they were asking me to call customer service if I needed to do anything. And of course, I was checking very late at night and so I decided I'd call the next day. Well, I forgot and so I got billed again. Well played, people. Well played.

Anyway, I wasn't expecting much from this particular one. I was actually annoyed when it didn't come mid month like it usually does. It came towards the end of July. When I finally got my package, I was pleasantly surprised that this month's products were a little bit different and I found myself actually looking forward to using them. Nothing special, just basic products but I feel like these are products that I would actually use.

The product I'm probably most excited about is this EVERY BEAUTY FOOT SMOOTHER. My feet need to be pampered very badly. Haha! (Retail: $4.99)

Then there's LA FRESH TRAVEL LITE ANTIBACTERIAL WIPES (8 WIPES). See what I mean when I said they're products that I would need? (Retail: $1.99)

There's a couple of JEAN PIERRE NAIL POLISH REMOVER WIPES (2 WIPES)  Again, one of those basic things that everybody needs. (Retail: $3.99/10 pieces)

Also, a teeny tiny sample of H2O PLUS FACE OASIS HYDRATING TREATMENT (8ML) (Retail: $36/50ml)

Lastly, there's a BE A BOMBSHELL LIP GLOSS IN SUMMER LOVIN' (FULL SIZE) - I think this is my 3rd lip gloss from this brand. I think they're alright. Super glossy. This one is a really pretty orange-y coral color. It's sheer and sparkly. (Retail: $14)

There you go.  Again, I was pretty pleased with the July box mostly because I wasn't really expecting anymore. The items are pretty basic, nothing mind blowingly good  but I think I'll give Beauty Box 5 another chance and see what they send me next month. Anything in particular you liked?

Til my next post,

Monday, July 22, 2013

June 2013 Summer Favorites

Hey Beauties!

I know it's kind of late into the new month but I still wanted to share with you my favorites from June. I only have a few but these are things that I really, really enjoyed. 

First of is The Balm's Balm Shelter tinted moisturizer in medium (cheaper on Amazon*). I got a few The Balm products from Hautelook and I've got to say, they're sooo good!  I can't stand wearing anything heavy on my face for everyday. I usually stick to BB creams but for days when I need something even simpler, I turn to this. I just use my fingers to apply quickly and I'm good to go.  It's really moisturizing, light weight, has sun protection, and gives just the right amount of light coverage for a more even skin tone. 

Next is this Milani Illuminating Powder in 03 - Beauty's Touch. Along with the Balm Shelter, this has been my saving grace for real quick everyday looks. It's a multipurpose powder that you can use for highlighter, bronzer and blush. I don't get a lot of use off it as bronzer but it's definitely a great highlighter and blush in one. After applying the tinted moisturizer, I just use a powder brush to sweep this all over my face and then I use a blush brush and sweep on the pinks on the pan and apply on my cheeks. It gives a smooth, radiant glow that's perfect for the summer. The color is not too overwhelming and not too made up. It just gives a natural, healthy look.

Next is this old favorite, the Maybelline Great Lash Water Proof Mascara in Very Black (cheaper on Amazon*). This is one of the first mascaras I've ever used and even when I steer away, I always find myself coming back to it. It's perfect for these hot summer days because it really is waterproof. It stays on all day and I don't have to worry about having raccoon eyes midday. This is not a volumizing mascara so if you're going for that heavy fake lashes look then this is not for you. It's very natural looking and opens up my eyes for a more awake, brighter face look. I love that it's true to color. It is very black which is what I want in my mascara. It doesn't clump my eyelashes but separates them really nicely to really open my peepers.

And the last one for makeup favorites is this Mirabella Eyes and Face Primer that I got from one of my My Glam/ Ipsy bags. Like everybody else, I was at first skeptical about what primers can do. I have received different brands from my subscription boxes and also a lot of random samples and this is my favorite. It's clear out of the tube and is denser as opposed to very creamy primers. When you put it on, you can immediately tell that its's prepping your face for makeup real good. It feels very matifying and leaves your skin with a just powdered feel. It makes my makeup stay on for so much longer and my skin feeling matte throughout the day.

And then on to skin care favorites, first is my Suki Face Exfoliating Foaming cleanser (smaller quantity available on Amazon*). I got this from a New Beauty Test Tube and I absolutely love it! this is probably my most favorite thing from this month. I LOVE exfoliating my face. My skin is not very sensitive so I can take a little bit more aggressive scrubbing and I've been a long time fan of St. Ive's Apricot scrub. I don't do it everyday (and you shouldn't either!) but I really enjoy that fresh face feeling that you can only get from exfoliating.  I try to exfoliate about twice a week and I have so fallen in love with this Suki cleanser that I haven't used my St. Ives ever since I got this! After wetting my face, I use two fingers to scoop up a little bit from the jar. I rub my fingers together to activate the product and I then proceed to scrub my face. From a brown sugar like texture, it melts into a pretty smooth foam cleanser. I love, love, love the smell of it too! It has a fresh lemony scent which adds to feeling that my skin is really fresh and clean!

And lastly, I've been loving this Vaseline Spray and Go Moisturizer* in Aloe Fresh. Ever since I saw this featured in a magazine, I've been wanting to get it. Putting on lotion is probably my least favorite thing to do and I skip it most of the time. I can usually get away with it but my legs have been so dry that I can't ignore it any longer. Now, before you get too excited and if you're like me who took the "Spray and Go" label too seriously, it's not like the commercial! Haha I was kind of disappointed about that but it definitely is a lot easier than having to put on lotion the regular way. It's just like applying spray on sunscreen. You spray it on and then you have to rub it into your skin for a little bit. Good news though is that it absorbs super quickly so you don't feel greasy for very long. Spraying is so much more convenient too. It's not messy and is very moisturizing. There are other varieties available but I picked this one because of aloe's cooling properties. I figured that this is what's best for summer.

That's it for my June favorites! I can't believe that it's gonna be time to do July favorites pretty soon. I always feel like summers go by super quick but this one has been especially fast, I can't even process it! How's your summer going?

Did any of these products stand out to you? Have you tried any of them? What products have you been enjoying lately?

Talk to you later!

PS. Follow me on Instagram for more updates!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Beach Babe (My Glam by Ipsy July 2013) + A Special Package

Hey fellow Beauty fans!

I received my July Ipsy bag today and I'm sharing it with you guys! I have to say, I'm a little bit disappointed this month not because I didn't like the products but because I was expecting something else. In my post about my last Ipsy bag, I mentioned that I heard that there was gonna be Benetint and a lip crayon in this months bag. Well, both products were featured BUT I don't know why I didn't realize that there was a possibility that I would get just one of the two "featured" products. See, sometimes, they give out different products in each bag. Not all the products are different but just maybe one or two. I got really, really excited about the Benetint. Lots of people have been raving about it and I wanted to try it out for myself. But of course, life had different plans. Lol I got the Pop crayon instead. Not a big deal but... ya know. I got my hopes up.

Anywayyyy, I think my favorite part of the whole thing is this month's bag. It's a transparent, neon pink, rounded purse. I think it's my new favorite one from Ipsy. Well, no. Maybe it's a tie between this and the chevron one I got last year!

If you're new around here and have never heard of Ipsy, it's a subscription service that send you about 5 beauty products a month for only $10. It's a great way to try out new products before purchasing them full size and to find out about products you wouldn't normally pick up.

Here's the July 2013 bag -

COOLA MINERAL FACIAL SUNSCREEN (.23 fl. oz.) - Happy about this. I need a new travel sunscreen for my purse for days that I need to reapply or when I'm rushing and forget to put sunscreen on. Additional details FYI: mineral, unscented and organic. (Retail: $36 for 1.7 fl. oz)

BIG SEXY HAIR WEATHER PROOF SPRAY (1.4 oz) - I'm not a big hair person but this is handy to have around. I've used Sexy Hair products before and they seem to do their job. This spray is supposed to fight humidity and frizz. Hmmm, interesting. (Retail: $18.95 for 3.4 oz)

POP BEAUTY POUTY POP CRAYON in CORAL CRUSH (Full Size) - Aaaah, this just reminds me of the product I couldn't have. Oh, Benetint, when will you come my way? Haha Anyhoo, I've been hoarding more lip products lately. I'm a fan of CoverGirl chubby sticks and find that lip crayons are so much easier to use and they're not too overwhelming like lipsticks sometimes are. They're sheer but still give your lips a nice hint of color. This one by Pop is a really pretty coral color on the stick but I find that it's a lot more pink when I applied it. I wished it was the same color as on the stick but oh well, it's still nice and you can't really have enough lip colors, can you? (Retail: $25 for a set of 6 crayons)

DERMA E MICRODERMABRASION SCRUB (1 oz) - This is probably the one I'm most excited about from this month's bag. I love facial scrubs! I try to exfoliate my face 1-2 times a week to get rid of dead skin cells. I am deeply in love with my Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser so this one by Derma E has some pretty big shoes to fill. It's a white cream in the jar with very fine crystals that kind of remind me of the texture of white sugar. I think I'm gonna use this tonight.  Additional details FYI: gluten free and vegan (Retail: $26.99 for 2 oz)

BH COSMETICS CALIFORNIA COLLECTION EYESHADOW PALETTE SAMPLE (3 pans) - Honestly, this was such a let down for me. I've been eyeing the California palettes at the BH Cosmetics website for the longest time and I was quite disappointed to find that they have very poor color pay off. When I first tried to swatch them with my finger, they didn't show up at all. I could only see sparkle on the back of my hand. I tried 2 different brushes on my hand and even tried it on my eyes but again, it didn't show up as pigmented as they were in the palette. I know a lot of people who use BH cosmetic palettes and are quite happy with the products so I'm hoping that this palette is just a bad egg. (Retail: $9.95 for each palette)

The last photo is the product card that came with my bag this month. 

There you go, my 5 products for this month. Have you tried any of them before? Are you an Ipsy subscriber? If so, what product are you most excited about? Did you get the Benetint?!

Let me know!!

And if you want to join Ipsy, click here.

OOOOH. And PS. I posted this photo on my Instagram today!
I'm se excited to share that I'm one of Influenster's recipients of the new Ponds Luminous Finish BB Cream. There's a special project coming up so stay tuned! I'm trying this out tomorrow and hopefully film a video on it. Yay!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

My Favorite Beauty Subscription: New Beauty TestTube July 2013

In my previous post, I shared what I got in my last Ipsy/ My Glam bag. I also took pictures for both my Beauty Box 5 and my previous TestTube(May 2013) but I got the latest TestTube on Monday so I decided to share that first.

Basically, New Beauty TestTube is a subscription box that comes 6 times a year (every 2 months). It used to be every season (4 times a year) but they recently changed it. It costs $29.99 a box plus shipping and handling so it costs me $39.99 every time. Yes, it is a lot more expensive than the other subscription boxes but it's really, really worth it. You get higher end products and for the most part, bigger samples and more full sized products. Some of my favorite brands that I got from previous boxes include Tarte, Bare Minerals, Simple, and NeoStrata.

I have been subscribed for a year now and so far, I have loved all my TestTubes. I have been highly satisfied with most of the products and I feel like I'm definitely getting more than my money's worth. AND, they always have bonus products! If you want to sign up for only one subscription box, this is definitely the way to go.

As I mentioned, I only got this 2 days ago so I haven't tried them out yet but if you're interested in finding more about a certain product, definitely let me know and I can do a demo/ review.

Anyhoo, on to the things I got:

MOROCCAN OIL BODY BUTTER (1.7 fl. oz) - I've been having a lot of dry patches on my legs lately so I'm very excited to try this out! It is not as scented as The Body Shop butters which is nice because sometimes, those scents can be too overwhelming. (Retail: $52 for 6.4 fl. oz.)

IT'S A 10 MIRACLE LEAVE-IN LITE (2 fl. oz) - I like how this is in a lite formula. Hopefully, that means that it doesn't feel heavy. I have very fine hair and I find that most products tend to weigh my hair down and leave my roots greasy. (Retail: $18 for 4 fl. oz)

PERLAGE ILLUMINATING PRIMER (.017 oz.)- I've never heard of this product or brand before but this is supposed to have light-diffusing particles to illuminate the face. It also has botanical extracts, vitamins and antioxidants so it works to help the skin deeper as well. (Retail: $19 for 2.0 fl.oz.)

ORLY NAIL LACQUER (0.6 fl. oz - full size) - This is the first polish product from TestTube. They've never included nail products in previous boxes but I think they're expanding the product range. I kind of wish I got a different color just because most of my nail polishes are red. 

PANTENE EXPERT COLLECTION SHAMPOO (3.9 fl. oz.) AND CONDITIONER (2.5 fl. oz) - I've never tried the expert collection line before but I've always been a fan of Pantene. Their products are not harsh, they smell good, doesn't break the bank and the formulations are pretty consistent. (Retail: Shampoo - $7.99 for 10.1 fl. oz; Conditioner - $7.99 for 8.4 fl. oz)

YBF (Your Best Friend) EYEBROW PENCIL IN UNIVERSAL TAUPE (FULL SIZE) - I only noticed after taking pictures that there is a spoolie brush on the other end of the pencil. I'm in the process of learning to do my eyebrows better so this is perfect! The color doesn't seem too harsh but gives just enough color pay off. (Retail: $12)

TARTE PURE MARACUJA OIL ROLLERBALL (0.6 fl. oz - FULL SIZE) - Oils have been all the rage lately and Marajuca oil is just one of the many kinds out in the market today. I've never tried it before but I find that oils are very hydrating without being heavy and sticky. This particular product is packaged in a small bottle with a rollerball so you can use it on your face to hydrate your skin, brighten dark eye circles and even fade out scars and discoloration. I've never tried to use straight up oil on my face before so this should be interesting. (Retail: $17)

LUMENE VITAMIN C + PURE RADIANCE NIGHT CREAM (0.5 fl. oz.) - I've been using the Lumene day cream for a few weeks now. I haven't noticed a big difference but I find that it's a good substitute for moisturizer + sunscreen now that it's summer time. I'm curious to see how the night cream will work out. (Retail: $19.99 for 1.7 fl. oz) Note: I got my Lumene Day Cream in this same sample size from CVS for under $5 but I'm not sure if the night cream is available too)

PHILOSOPHY PURITY MADE SIMPLE FACIAL CLEANSER (1 fl. oz) - Most people rave about Philosophy so I wanted to love previous products I've tried before but for some reason, they're just so-so to me. I'll try this one and see if that changes things. (Retail: $32 for 16 fl. oz.)


Here are all the products all together:

Isn't it awesome? I can't wait to try out my new products! 

Also, when you sign up, you get a catalog of all the products including brand information, product ingredients and directions on how to use them; As well as a subscription to the New Beauty Magazine which is full of news and reviews and everything related to the latest and best beauty products. Bonus feature: You can view your magazine digitally on your tablet too!

What do you think? You can sign up for the TestTube here if you'd like. Sign up soon so you can get the next one! :)

PS. If you are interested in signing up, I have referral links to get you $5 off your first TestTube. Leave your email below if you'd like me to send you the link!