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.

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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.

POPSUGAR Must Have box: September and October 2013 boxes

Hi, reader! Today is your lucky day as you get two for the price of one today. Yep two Popsugar boxes in one post. See how generous I am and my generosity has nothing to do with the fact I forgot to write up a blog post last month on the September box. Nope.

So on to the September box.

The first item is the Barr-Co. Original Scent Reed Diffuser. This was my favorite thing in this box. This a great scent, like a cross between oatmeal cookies and Shea butter. This also does a great job of making the whole house smell great!

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The next item is the book P.S. You’re Invited by Erica Domesek. This book shows you a bunch of crafts and embellishments you can do. This is not really my thing but my mom likes to craft so she was the recipient of the book.

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The next item is the Rifle Paper Co. Coaster Set. While these have a pretty floral design, these are a thick paper so I don’t think these would last too long.

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The next item is Kitsch Headbands. These are the same material as hair ties. Unfortunately headbands that go around the whole head give me a headache and these are no exception. I might give these to my 11 year old cousin or use them when washing my face.

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The next item is a $25 gift card to Shoptiques.com. Shoptiques is an online market place for shops across the world. I haven’t used it yet but there is some cute jewelry I have my eye on.

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The last items in the box are two food items, That’s It. Bar and Sharkies. My dogs somehow got into my box and eat these. The dog I suspect was the culprit is a real Houdini when comes to getting food that she shouldn’t be able to reach. So I have no idea how these taste. They also ate them before I could even take a picture of the snacks. I got my box before leaving for work and when I got home the snacks were gone.

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Now on the October box.

The first thing is the The Can’t Cook Book: Recipes for the Absolutely Terrified! by Jessica Seinfeld. The book contains simple recipes for the person that is scared of the kitchen. As the person that cooks dinner for the family most nights I wasn’t impressed with the book. There wasn’t anything I really wanted to cook in it and I thought the language was a little condescending. Though with cook books I would always recommend going to your public library and checking out the book before buying as a cookbook that doesn’t appeal to me might be perfect for someone else.

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The next thing is the NYX Cosmetics liquid liner and Smokey Shadow palette. I didn’t try the liner (or it seems even took a pic, sorry!) because it is a black liner and I was hoping to trade it for a brown liner. Side note but I am so sick of getting black liners in my boxes. Would a brown or a color liner that is not a pencil too much to ask for?!? The Smokey palette was nice but nothing special. Only the brown shadow has decent pigmentation but I guess if the other shadows were nicely pigmented then it wouldn’t be wearable.

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The next item is the Gorjana Charity Bali Bead Bracelet. 100% of the proceeds of this bracelet will go to the charity Breast Cancer Connections. I do think this bracelet looks a little craft project-y but I have been wearing it since I got it in honor of my aunt, who is in remission from her breast cancer. Go, aunt!!

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The next item is the Julep for Popsugar Duo. The duo comes with a Freedom Polymer top coat and Char nail polish. I already have Char so it was a little disappointing that I didn’t get a new color. Click here to look at a swatch of Char. I already have a Freedom Polymer topcoat. It works like the Seche Vite top coat but not as thick or shiny. It does shrink your polish so the longer you wait to apply after the last coat of nail polish the better. It is nice to have a backup of the topcoat since I am constantly losing the one I already have.

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The next item is the Jane Tran bobby pins. Once these are in these stay put and whatever hair in the pins is trapped! The downside is that there are little hard to put in and it pulls hairs and breaks a few strands when taking them out. I like these better then those solid Jane Tran bobby pins as they are a little easier to open and get in our hair.

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The next item is The Wet Brush. This is by far my favorite thing in the box and maybe anything that I have ever gotten in a box. I know, big claim to make. This brush is designed to eliminate “tugging, pulling, and ripping.” I was little dubious of the claim but it works! Having curly hair I can only brush when it is wet and I always have knots. This goes through my hair so easily, without any pain or pulling. Seriously love this brush.

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The next thing is The Crispery Halloween Crispycake. This is a huge rice crispy treat. These were pretty good, very marshmallowy and much better then the repackaged ones you can get at the grocery store.

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The last item in the box is a $20 credit to Stitch Fix Click on the link to get more info (don’t worry that isn’t a referral link). Now if you want one let me know ;). This alway looked like a cool service, a Stitch Fix stylist sends you a box of clothes and accessories for you to try out. If you like something or all the pieces you can buy them at a discount and send the rest back. The major downside to this service is that if you are plus size you can’t use this service, not even for an all accessory box. Being plus size I lied about what size I wear so I can see what the service was like. This site is so busy that I won’t get my box until March!

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So that is what I got in my Popsugar boxes the last two months. Popsugar will be raising their prices with the November box by $5, $35 to $40 a month. So I got an year subscription to lock in the current prices. I think if you get a prepaid subscription by the end of the month you will be able to get the lower price. If you want to help me out by using my referral link click here.

Julep Maven October 2013 box

Hi, reader! Long time no blog! I’m back with my latest Julep Maven box. I had a hard time picking a box this month. I didn’t like the polishes in my normal It Girl box but I wasn’t thrilled with the product featured in the other boxes, though it was interested in trying the face mask in the Modern Beauty box. After much personal debating I went with the Bombshell box. So without further adieu here’s my Maven box.

The quote of the month.

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The extra this month is candy corn. I love candy corn so I was happy to see these. No one in my house likes these so I don’t buy them because eating a whole bag of candy corn would be bad. Pretty sure that would put a person into a diabetic coma.

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The product this month is a double ended Kajal Eye Glider liner and sharpener. The brown side applied nicely but the black side was dry with an uneven application. Also after five minutes I swiped my hand, the brown smeared but the black stayed still. This also isn’t waterproof.

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Now on to the polishes. Cleopatra is described as a latex polish, it is called latex because of how it looks not because latex is in it.

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Of course I had to get add ons and I got three polishes. Casper is glow in the dark and Ciara is probably the most unique polish in my collection. I hope it looks just as good on my nails as it does on the swatch nail.

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So that is my box. The two polishes I’m most excited about are Valerie and Ciara. They are both gorgeous and can’t wait to wear them.

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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