First Impressions: Birchbox October 2013

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Yay! Finally doing the last review of my October boxes. I got in all my November boxes this week so I knew I had to get my act together. So here is my box.

The first item is the Avène Cleanance Gel Soapless Cleanser for oily/acne prone skin. I don’t know how they claim to be soapless as this foams up, which is usually because of detergent in the product. Also I do not have oily or acne prone skin so I found this soap a little drying. It does smell nice and fresh and it did a good job taking care of any makeup left on my face after using a makeup wipe.

Full size: $20

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The next item is Curly Solutions Curl Keeper. This is a water based hair serum to help curls stay frizz free. When I first used it I didn’t think it was going to work because this felt like I was pouring water into my hand. I am happy to admit I was wrong as my curls looked great every time I use this. My curls are defined and as frizz free as they could be living in the Deep South. I have gotten a bunch of compliments on my hair. I wish I didn’t just buy a big bottle Quidad Climate Control® Heat & Humidity Gel because I would definitely buy a bottle of this.

Full size: $10

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The next item is DDF Wrinkle Resist Plus Pore Minimizer Moisturizer Serum. This serum is designed to minimize pores and soften fine lines. I didn’t notice any difference when I used this and like most serums and wrinkle creams I think I need to use for an extended period before anything happens.

Full size: $85

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The next item is theBalm cosmetics Stainiac in Beauty Queen. This is a lip and cheek stain similar to Benefit’s Benetint. I’m not a fan of either product. I find they dry too quickly to spread and then I have streaks where I first put the product.

Full size: $17

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The last item is a Birchbox Find, which is Chapstick Hydration Lock in Vanilla Créme. This is nice and reminds me of the medicated Chapstick. When I first started using it I thought it was a little too waxy for me but now it is the perfect balance you would want in a lip balm, not too waxy and not too greasy.

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Not the best box but it was saved by the awesome Curl Keeper serum.

First Impressions: beautybox 5 October 2013

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So you know how I’ve been liking my beautybox 5 boxes lately. Yeah, not so much this month. Repeat brands or brands that aren’t new to the market was what greeted me this month.

The first item is Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. I have used this lotion for years because it is one of the few drugstore lotion that are perfume and scent free. It is a light lotion and absorbs quickly. I have better lotion that are more moisturizing but I still get this every once in a while. I was not excited to find this in my box, while I like it, I get subscription boxes to find new items.

Full price: $6.99 for 8oz

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The next item is Model Co Cheek and Lip Tint. Finally, a Model Co product I like! This blended nicely and looked like a natural flush. It also has a great raspberry scent. I liked it as a cheek tint and not so much as lip tint, but that is more of personal preference than product performance.

Full price: $22 for .03 oz

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The next item is Swissco Glitter Toe Separators. What can I say. These are toe separators that are sparkly. As much as I love painting my finger nails I hardly ever paint my toes especially now that colder weather is here. This would have been much better in a box 4 or 5 months ago.

Full price: $2

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The next item is La Fresh Travel Lite Facial Cleansing Wipes. Sigh. Honestly, La Fresh has more wipes then I thought possible. These are okay. Since this is a pack of eight the wipes are nicely moisturized and it does a decent job of taking off my foundation. It did not do a good job of taking off my eye makeup. I wear waterproof mascara and liner and it barely touched it.

Full price: $19.99 for 48 wipes

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The last item in box is Nubar Alter Ego Nail Lacquer in Blondie. This is a glitter top coat. When I painted the nail wheel I noticed that the polish was a thick gel texture.

Full price: $8 for .5oz

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So that’s my box.

First Impressions: Ipsy October 2013

For some reason it took me awhile to try any of the stuff in my subscription bags from October. I have finally got around using them so there is my First Impressions review of Ipsy.

First up is the bag. Not a huge fan of the bag. I looks just like the bag we got a few months ago but now with a quote.

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The first item in my bag is Zoya nail polish in Neve. Out of the three Zoya polishes in the bags this is the one that I wanted. Yay! Zoya is my favorite brand so I’m always happy to get one in my bag.
Neve is a gorgeous navy blue with purple undertones. In some lights it looks blue and in some purple.

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The next item is Bella Terra Mineral Cosmetics mineral shimmer in Emotion. This was nice, nothing special mineral eyeshadow. It is a medium purple that works as a lid color or as a crease color.

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The next item is Style Sexy Hair Spray Clay. This a hair spray and I don’t have a need for hair spray. If you have curly hair and use hair spray let me know. Maybe I’m missing something but I just don’t see a need for hair spray with curly hair.

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The next item is Coastal Scents medium shadow brush BR-C-N02. This was a good brush with a good balance between firmness and softness. It picked up the eyeshadow really well. The only bad thing I would say is that this brush is a little too big for my eyelid so I think I would only use this for my brow highlight.

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The last item is the Nourish Organic Deeply Nourishing Coconut & Argan body lotion. This is sold exclusively at Target so if you are interested in this you can find it there. I didn’t find anything special about this lotion. It is a light lotion and absorbs quickly. My hands are always dry, one of the downsides to working in a library, and I like heavy duty lotions. This one doesn’t seem to make much difference after using it. This smell is a little weird, not quite coconut and also a weird floral scent.

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So that was my October Ipsy bag.

First Impressions: beautybox 5 and Birchbox September 2013

Hi, reader! Looks like time got away from me again this month. I realized that today was the last day of the month and I still haven’t done my beautybox 5 and Birchbox review. I also have my POPSUGAR Must Have box to post too. Boy time goes by so quickly when you have things to do.

First up is my beautybox 5 box.

As you might notice beautybox 5 info card has a new look. Their info card looks more like Birchbox’s info card. And they now have a monthly theme. This month’s theme is “on the go” with products to help with the woman on the go.

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The first product is the Bella Pierre Cosmetics Shimmer Powder in Celebration. As the info card says this can be used anywhere you need sparkle. I think this has too much color, at least for my pale skin, to use as all over shimmer powder. I used this as an eyeshadow and it worked nicely. The only downside is I have a ton of eyeshadows this color. I guess it is a good thing I love gold eye shadows.

Full size: .08 oz for $15

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The next item is the Body Drench Lip Drench lip balm in Grapefruit. This is nice, not too greasy and too oily. And the best part is that it smells like yummy grapefruit! After the first use I threw it my purse and I think think I might like this more than my EOS lip balm.

Full size: .15 oz for $4.99

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The next item is Fine Featherheads Fly Ties. Hair ties! I love hair ties and I can always use more. I really like the colors too. If you want to get your own set of Fly Ties hair ties click here to visit there website. Don’t worry the link isn’t a referral or affiliate link.

Full size: 4 pack for $7.95

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The next item is Skiin Shop Instant Skin Tightener & Line Filler. The info card says this is “plastic surgery in a bottle” and it lifts, tightens and rehydrates your skin. I used this a few times and didn’t notice any miracles. This might be a product that needs to be used a while to notice any results.

Full size: .5 oz for $39.95

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The last item is Every Beauty Makeup Remover Pads with Argan Oil. After the hair ties I was probably the most excited for this product. These are dry makeup wipes that you add to activate and I could finally get a face wipe that wouldn’t be too dry. Well, this is the product. After using it I wasn’t that impressed. I don’t think that it did that good of a job taking off my makeup and it barely touched my waterproof liner and mascara. Definitely needed to follow up with a separate cleanser.

Full size: 50 count for $6.99

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Now on to my Birchbox.

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As you can see from the picture above the theme this month was Heritage, which celebrates Birchbox 3rd anniversary.

The first item in the box is Benefit Cosmetics Sugarbomb Ultra Plush lip gloss. Definitely my favorite item in this box. Adds just enough color to my lips and is a great color, a great neutral pink that isn’t too cool or too warm. But the best thing about this lip gloss is that this isn’t sticky at all, of course that means it doesn’t have any staying power but I’m okay with that. Another downside is that it has a strong tropical fruit scent.

Full size: $16

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The next item is the COOLA Matte SPF 30 Face. This is a mineral based sunscreen, which means no yucky sunscreen smell!, and has a slight yellow tint that helps neutralize redness. This feels like a face primer and it worked great under my foundation. I really liked this and if it was a little cheaper I would totally buy this right now.

Full price: $36

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The next item is the Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel Sensitve. This is a facial peel for sensitive skin. I have tried this yet as I’m a little afraid about what will happen. I know it is designed for sensitive skin but yeah. I’m a scaredy cat. It does smell like green apples.

Full size: $39

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The next item is the Racinne Ultimate Youth Power Eye Serum. This serum is to help with fine lines and dark circles. Like the Skiin Shop line filler I got in my beautybox 5 box, I didn’t notice any immediate results and this is probably something that needs to be used for a while. Also this weirdly smells like hairspray, thankfully it doesn’t last long. This isn’t moisturizing at all so I have to add a moisturizer over it.

Full size: $36

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The last item in the box is the RUFFIAN nail lacquer in Delirium. I haven’t used this yet but it is a pretty shiny purple. Sorry I forgot to take a swatch picture but it looks just like the bottle color.

Full size: $10

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So that was my two boxes. I am happy with both boxes and surprisingly I think the beautybox 5 box was my favorite beauty box this month. They have really stepped up their boxes.

First Impressions: Ipsy bag September 2013

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Hi, reader! Before I get into the review I just have to say that I’m not liking the update to the WordPress iPad app. I wrote the whole review and when I went to upload it the entire post I wrote disappeared! Sigh! So now I have to write the whole thing all over again.

To continue with the whining tread I wasn’t that happy with my Ipsy bag this month. Nothing impressed me and except for one item I don’t see me using anything I got.

First up here is the bag. While I like the blue color I don’t like the pattern at all. It looks like a makeup bag you would pick up from the dollar store. Saying that I watched a few YouTube unboxing videos and they thought this bag was cute so maybe I’m just picky.

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The first item is the It’s So B!G volumizing mascara by Elizabeth Mott. My first impression was this mascara was misnamed as it was NOT volumizing. The only thing this mascara did was make my lashes black.

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The next item is the Starlooks Kohl eye pencil in Obsidian. Honestly! I cancelled my subscription to the Starlooks Starbox for a reason. I know I say this all the time but I hate pencil liners. While this one is okay in the application the pigmentation was not great. Comes off as more dark grey than black.

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The next item is the Victoria Jackson Taupe eyebrow pencil. I got an eyebrow pencil last month from Ipsy and while this one is better in terms of color match this is not something I would use. I have thick brows so I don’t need a pencil to fill in my brows. I also wish the point was a little thinner. My mom will be getting this.

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The next item is the Cailyn tinted lip balm in Big Apple. Another item that is misnamed. This acts and feels more like a lipstick. For a lip balm this not moisturizing at all. Also the color when applied is a little matte. I do like it as a lip color and will use it. I do dislike this packaging though. I like that the lip brush is built in but I think the packaging is bulky and doesn’t make it easy to throw in your purse.

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The last item in the bag is the NYX eyeshadow in Velvet Suede. In the pot this is a silvery blue with purple and blue sparkle. Applied it only looks silver and the pigmentation is not that great. I was able to make the blue show up when I used a white eyeshadow base.

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Here is a picture using everything in my bag. I also used my Urban Decay Naked 1 palette for the eyeshadow Gunmetal as the crease color.

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Here is an eye look using the NYX Velvet Suede eyeshadow over the NYX jumbo eyeshadow pencil in Milk. I also used the purple shadows I used in the Purple Autumn eye look.

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So that’s my bag. If you got a September Ipsy bag hopefully you like your bag more than I liked mine.

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First Impressions: beautybox 5 August 2013

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I got my August beautybox 5 box and I wasn’t disappointed! Yay! There was new brands and no La Fresh wipes in sight!

So let’s get into the box.

The first item is the Be a Bombshell eyeshadow in Mardi Gras. I’ve liked other things from Be a Bombshell that I received in other boxes but this shadow was a dud. I love the color but as you can see from the swatch it goes on patchy.

Full size: $14 (This is full size.)
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Here is an eye look. Mardi Gras in on the lid and like usual not sure what else I used.
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The next item is the H2O Plus Aquafirm + Micro-Collagen Moisturizer. This moisturizer is supposed to promote collagen productions and help reduce fine lines. This is a product that probably needs to be used for a while to notice results and I only used it a few times and didn’t notice anything. I have combo skin and felt that this wasn’t moisturizing enough and I wasn’t a fan of the smell. It smells like a generic hotel soap.

Full size: $50 for 1.7oz
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The next item is the Bask Heavenly Silk Daily Skin lotion. This lotion has a bunch of good things in it, or so the card description says, that helps with moisturizing and skin firming. I haven’t noticed any firming effects but this is a great moisturizer. I have been using this as a hand lotion and my hands still feel moisturized even after washing them. The downside is the smell, like generic lotion and baby powder. This works so great that I guess I’ll have to put up with the smell.

Full size: $19.98 for 22oz

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The next item is the Nubar nail lacquer in Nubar Red. This is a thick polish, almost gel like. I wasn’t thrilled to get another red polish but I was lucky enough to find someone to trade my polish for theirs. Yay for online trading!

Full size: $8 for .5oz

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The last item is the Swissco nail file. My first thought was, “oh glitter!” I’m like a magpie and love sparkly and shiny things so I think this nail file is too cute. Haven’t used it yet so don’t know how well it works.

Full size: $1.50 (This is full size.)

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Here is a picture of everything in the box. Looking at everything in the box I noticed I got a a lot of red things this month.

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So another box that wasn’t too bad. Keep up the good work beautybox 5!

Birchbox and Ipsy August 2013

Hi everyone. So I’m late again with my Birchbox and Ipsy posts so I am combining them again this month.

Since I have a lot to share let’s just get started.

The theme for Birchbox this month was Finishing School, with the boxes this month giving you items to help you finish a look.

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The first item is the Dr. Jart+ Premium BB Cream SPF 45+. Like all BB creams this is supposed to help even out your skintone, protect against the sun, and do other helpful skin beneficial things. First off this does not have that icky sunscreen smell! but this one size fits all color is a little too dark for my skin. It does blend out nicely and doesn’t look really obvious that I’m wearing something too dark for my skin tone. This does a decent job of evening out my skin tone but I still put my regular foundation on over it. I don’t think I would buy the full size but I will finish up the sample.

Full size: $39

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As you can see, this is a little too dark for me. The pale pasty hand on the left is without the BB cream and the hand on the right has it on.

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The next item is the Jasmine Seven Fresh Feet Wipes. These wipes are for quickly refreshing your feet. These smelled nice and pepperminty. I am a morning shower person so I think these are a great idea to use so I won’t but dirty feet in my bed.

Full size: $25.95

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The next item is the ModelCo party Proof lipstick in Kitty. This is a semi-matte lipstick that is hydrating and long lasting. While I do agree that this is hydrating, I don’t think it is any longer lasting than other lipsticks. This has a nice fruity scent and goes on smoothly. Kitty is a great nude color for me. It gives a little bit of color and doesn’t wash out my lips.

Full size: set of three for $24

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The next item is the Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect spray. This is a leave in conditioner that protects your hair from heat style and uv rays, and detangles. I was not that impressed with this. While it did a decent job detangling, it is not a good leave in conditioner.

Full size: $32

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The last item in the box is the Miss Jessie’s Original Super Slip Sudsy Shampoo. This product is to help conquer tangles, dryness, and frizz. This shampoo has a really weird texture. One time I had a craft at work to make slime and that is what this shampoo feels like. This shampoo also does not get foamy or bubbly. Though it did get my hair clean. I like the fruity smell.

Full size: $14

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Everything I got in my box.

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On to Ipsy. Their theme for this month was Glamour Academy. Obviously school was on Birchbox and Ipsy’s brain for this month.

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The bag for this month.

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The first item in the bag was MICAbeauty Cosmetics Shimmer Powder in Bronze. I looked on MICAbeauty’s website to see what a shimmer powder is and this is listed under the eyeshadow, which is a good thing because that is how I was using it. This is mineral eyeshadow that is a pretty golden peach shadow. It went on very smoothly and stayed on until I washed it off.

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Here is an eye look I did using the Shimmer Powder. It is on the lid, not sure what else I used. I should really make this post when I take these pictures or at least make notes somewhere.

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The next item is the Pixi Lash Booster mascara in black. This is an okay mascara, nothing special about it.

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The next item is the Chella Dazzling Dark brown eyebrow color. I prefer powder to fill in my brows so I wasn’t that thrilled to get the pencil. Also this is a little too dark and red toned for my brows. I can get it to work but I rather use something else that I don’t have to make work.

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The next item is the Michael Todd Jojoba Charcoal facial scrub. This was my favorite thing in the bag. I have sensitive skin that becomes irritated with any scrub but this is gentle enough that I didn’t have any problems with it. The scrub bits are kinda spongey so while they scrub they are not too harsh. One suggestion I would make it to use this in your shower. The black charcoal part is kinda messy when removing it.

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The last item is the Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Anarchy. This is super pigmented and long lasting.

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Here is everything I got in my Ipsy bag.

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So that is what I got in my boxes this month.