Thursday, December 15, 2011

Belated November 2011 Birchbox

 Here is my very belated post on my November 2011 Birchbox.  I'm not even sure why I took so long to write this up since I was pretty darn impressed with this box!

Here is what I got:
  • Klorane Soothing Eye Makeup Remover:  While not very exciting, this is a nice eye makeup remover and not terribly expensive for the full-size bottle.  I liked this product, and the travel-size bottle will come in handy next time I take a trip.
  • LaROCCA Skincare Champagne & Shimmer Body Polish:  I liked this sample, as well. Though the size of the jar is too small to even attempt to use all over your body.  It smells nice and is a good hand scrub.
  • Oscar Blandi Jasmine Protein Mist:  This is a leave-in hair protection and fortifying spray.  I just loved the scent of this hair mist, it made me want to keep smelling my hair all day long.
  • Zoya Nail Polish in Noel:  I was excited to see yet another Zoya polish in this month's box.  I just love getting a new nail polish.  While I haven't tried out this teal-blue shade just yet, I know it will be just as good as the rest of the Zoya polishes I have.
  • Chuao Chocolatier Firecracker Chocopod:  Now this really was a nice treat.  Every girl loves chocolate, and I am no exception!  The Chocopod is dark chocolate with chipotle and popping candies in it.  I actually ordered another bar from Birchbox because I liked this interesting treat so much!

And, I also got this cute bracelet from Bauble Bar in my box!  Nail polish, chocolate and jewelry...this month's Birchbox was the best yet!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Must Have Uber-Awesome Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette!

Lucky girl that I am, I managed to grab the coveted Urban Decay Naked 2 palette the first day it was released for sale!  I knew that this had potential to be just as good if not better than the first one, and so far, it has not disappointed.  These eyeshadows are so buttery smooth they blend beautifully.  I find the shades to be even more wearable for everyday looks than those in the first Naked palette.  The palette comes with a really nice double-ended brush that is actually usable and a cute mini Lip Junkie lip gloss in Naked.  Overall, I couldn't be more pleased with this purchase!  You simply must get this now!!!

Foxy (bisque with matte finish), Half Baked (bronze with shimmery finish), Booty Call (creamy shimmer), Chopper (copper with micro glitter)

Tease (taupey brown with matte finish), Snake Bite (dark bronze metallic), Suspect (rose gold beige with shimmery finish), Pistol (light grey with shimmery finish)

Verve (oyster with shimmery finish), YDK (bronze metallic), Busted (dark brown with shimmery finish), Blackout (black with matte finish)

Friday, October 28, 2011

October Birchbox

Well, October is nearly over and I am just now getting to this month's Birchbox review.  I think that is a pretty good indicator of how excited I was by this box...*sigh*.  I am calling this month's box the "Stinky Birchbox" because of the foul smelling products I received!

Here is what I got:
  • Ahava Mineral Foot Cream:  As I have said before, I love the feel of Ahava mineral creams, but they smell just awful!
  • Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel:  This is a good brow gel if you are a person who likes to use brow gel; it is just something that I rarely use.
  • Number 4 Hair Lumiere D'hiver Reconstructing Masque: This product is meant to hydrate and add shine to hair.  Not much to say about this one.  I don't have a problem with dry hair or breakage, but my hair did feel nice and conditioned after using it.  The scent was okay--herbal/floral.
  • Sunday Riley Modern Skincare Juno Transformative Lipid Serum:  This is a mix of 13 essential oils which are meant to replenish, firm and protect skin.  That's all well and good if you can get past the fact that is smells like garlic and olive oil!  Eeew!  This never had a chance to do anything for me, as I washed it off immediately due to the terrible smell!
  • Tea Forte Minteas: These were a nice treat, though nothing I would actually purchase.
So, final verdict on this box is two thumbs down.  I was really bored with this box, and I am tired of bad smelling creams and serums.  Here's hoping next month brings some more exciting cosmetic items my way!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Estee Lauder Dupe

L: Estee Lauder Pure Color Crystal Lipstick in Crystal Pink; R: NYC lipstick in Violet Shine

I stumbled upon a really good dupe for Estee Lauder lipstick the other day.  I happened to grab an NYC lipstick on sale for a whopping $.24 in the shade Violet Shine.  When I applied the lipstick the light raspberry scent and creamy texture reminded me of the one and only Estee Lauder lipstick I own which happens to be the Pure Color Crystal Lipstick in the shade Crystal Pink.  As you can see below, these two lipsticks are nearly identical in color, and I can say that they smell exactly the same.  The only difference I noticed was that the Estee Lauder lipstick was a little more moisturizing.  The price difference is a completely different story...the Estee Lauder lipstick costs $24 while the NYC lipstick costs $1.

L: Estee Lauder Pure Color Crystal Lipstick in Crystal Pink; R: NYC lipstick in Violet Shine

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Allure Freebies!

Whoo hoo!  I actually won a couple of the Allure Magazine summer giveaways!  Lucky girl that I am, I won a bottle of Marc Jacobs Oh, Lola! perfume.  This fragrance retails for $88!  It is a lovely floral/fruity scent; I don't think it is a particularly unique scent.  However, the bottle is simply gorgeous and looks fab sitting on my dresser.

And, I won a Maybelline Color Sensational lipstick in the shade Pink Freeze.  I hadn't tried this line of lipstick before and was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this lipstick.  Pink Freeze is a bright but wearable pink shade.  So, thanks Allure!!!  I am loving my free products!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

September Birchbox

September 2011 Birchbox
Another month...another Birchbox!  This month's box celebrates Birchbox's 1-year anniversary.  My celebratory box was filled with a couple hits and misses.

Here is what I got in my box:

Incoco Nail Polish Applique: Although the pattern I got is a little tacky, these nail polish strips were so fun and easy to use.  The staying power wasn't great, but for a special occasion, these would be worth purchasing to create a high-end manicure look.  I will definitely be trying out some more of these! 

Jouer Lip Enhancer: This product is supposed to hydrate, plump, and condition lips.  Well, I just loved it!  My lips felt great, and the product seemed to be long-lasting on my lips.  I found the balm to be similar in texture to the Mary Kay Satin Lips balm.

Jurlique Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer: As far as hand sanitizers go, this is a pretty darn good one.  It has an herbal scent and does seem to provide a bit of moisture.  My hands felt clean and smooth after using this.

Truth Art Beauty Face Nourish:  I was not excited to see this in my box, as I don't like putting oil products on my face.  I just find the greasy feeling kind of gross.  So, needless to say, I haven't even tried this out yet:(

Birchbox Friendship Bracelet: This was a cute touch and something I might actually wear since I love pink!

 Incoco Nail Polish Applique

Friday, September 9, 2011

Anniversary Haul!

Tarte Radiant & Rested: Volume II kit
My wonderful husband of two years surprised me with a gorgeous Coach purse filled with goodies from Sephora for our anniversary.  He did so well, I just had to share with you what he got me!

I think my favorite so far is the Tarte Radiant & Rested: Volume II kit.  The kit features the Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum, Bright Side Double-Ended Eye Brightener, LipSurgence Natural Lip Tint in "Sweet", Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in "Glisten", and Provocateur Amazonian Clay Shimmering Powder in "Champagne".  I am really loving the blush, shimmering powder (great for highlighting), and the eye brightener.  I love how easy the eye brightener is to use; it has an end labeled "day" and one labeled "night".  You simply pull out the end you want to reveal a pointed sponge tip applicator that fits nicely into the inner corner of the eye.  Very quick and easy!

I also got the Fresh Sugar Honey Tinted Lip Treatment, Urban Decay All Nighter makeup setting spray, and the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencil in "Midnight Cowboy".  I haven't gotten to test out the setting spray to see if it really helps my makeup to last better throughout the day, but I like the way it softly mists your face and drys quickly.  The 24/7 shadow is seriously budge-proof; once applied, it is not going anywhere until you wash it off!  I think I will be grabbing a few more of these.  And lastly, the Fresh lip tint is just as wonderful as the rest of the Fresh lip treatments; I was really happy to get this pretty, neutral shade.

Swatches L to R: Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencil in "Midnight Cowboy; Fresh Sugar Honey Tinted Lip Treatment; LipSurgence Natural Lip Tint in "Sweet"; Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in "Glisten"; Provocateur Amazonian Clay Shimmering Powder in "Champagne.

Friday, August 19, 2011

August Birchbox

It's August Birchbox time!  Yay!!!  As always, I was super excited for my birchbox this month.  This month's Birchbox theme was beauty innovations.  Unfortunately, this box was rather underwhelming for me.  Everything was just...okay.  

Anyway, here's what came in my box:
  • Atelier Cologne Orange Sanguine Cologne Absolue:  This is a very orangey scent that at first smelled a bit like soap to me.  I grew to like the scent more as I wore it.  I don't think I am likely to spend $145 to own it though!
  • blinc Mascara: This is a "tube" mascara that coats your entire lash in a "tube".  I don't like this product because it does not give my lashes any volume.  However, it is great for length and definition; someone with naturally full lashes might really like this mascara.  Also, when you remove this product it tends to come off in stringy pieces that get all over your face.
  • Caudalie Premier Cru The Eye Cream:  I liked this eye cream because it went on light and smooth and sank right into my skin.  I am not a fan of thick, greasy eye creams.  However, the $95 dollar price tag on this cream will definitely prohibit me from buying the full-size product.  I'll stick with my much more affordable the beloved Clinique All About Eyes!
  • Fix Malibu Wish Wash Exfoliating Powder Wash: This is a power, similar looking to baby powder, that turns into and exfoliating face wash when you add water.  To me, a powder face wash seems like a step backward rather than an innovation!  I can imagine women in the 1800s using powdered facial cleansers.  This product was messy and kind of inconvenient to use.  All that being said, it did clean my face well and leave it feeling soft and smooth.  I wouldn't purchase the full-size product though.
  • Twistband Hair Tie: This is a simple piece of soft black elastic to tie your hair back with.  It is supposed to be fashionable on your wrist, as well as in your hair.  I have to admit that it looks far better on my wrist than my plain hair ties.  Since I have not been able to break myself of the habit of always having a hair tie on my wrist, this is an awesome hair tie innovation for me!  I just ordered a set of several more colors of these.  Get yours on the Twistband website and use the coupon code LUCKY2 to save 40% on your order!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Wet n'Wild Walking on Eggshells Trio

Wet n'Wild Walking on Eggshells Trio
When I first saw this eyeshadow trio in the store, I thought it was nothing special. Then, I kept seeing reviews and swatches for it everywhere. Finally, I saw Emily from the Beauty Broadcast mention this trio in a MAC dupes video which totally sold me on it (the shades in the trio are dupes for three MAC shades!). So, I gave in and bought this little gem for a whole whopping $2.99. And, let me tell you it is worth every penny and then some! I could wear these three shades everyday...I practically did this week! This trio is perfect for everyday wear, especially in the Summer. I just can't get over how pigmented and beautiful the colors are. I have a few of the other Wet n' Wild trios, but this one is definitely a stand out for me. So, if you find yourself thinking that these trios are nothing special, think again and try one for yourself.

Do you have a favorite Wet n' Wild eyeshadow trio or palette?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Glamour Me -- True Blood Inspired Makeup!

Tarte for True Blood Gamour Me palette

For all of you diehard True Blood fans out there, Tarte Cosmetics has just come out with the ultimate palette for you. Whether you are a vampy vixen or a luminous fairy, you will love this palette! First off, this palette is soooo cute; check out that lacing detail. I just had to grab this limited edition palette for the packaging alone. But, the eyeshadows are really great quality, too. Most of the shades are shimmer/frost; there are only four matte shades in the palette. I prefer shimmery shades; so, that was no problem for me. The shadows blend wonderfully, and you have shades to create natural everyday looks, as well as sultry nighttime looks.

The kit also includes a full size EmphasEYES Aqua-Gel eyeliner in black; a Lights, Camera, Lashes! natural mascara; and a Lifted natural eye primer. I was pretty happy with these products, as well.

Just look at all those beautiful colors! I can't wait to experiment more with this palette! To get your hands on this little beauty, hurry up and visit Sephora or Tarte online!

Loving My Blasted Nails!

The picture just does not do these nails justice! The effect of the Sephora by OPI Blasted Nail Polish in Blasted Silver layed over Revlon's Grape Icy scented polish creates an edgy, fun look. I am really loving the crackle or "blasted" polishes right now; they make it super easy to create and interesting and expensive looking manicure at home. The Sephora by OPI Blasted polishes work really well, as do the China Glaze Crackle polishes.

Just to note, the Revlon scented polish really does smell nice when dried. Unfortunately, since I layered other polish on top, the scent was covered up. I think that scented polish is a fun idea and very worthwhile if you are not a person who likes to use a top coat over your nail polish.

Sephora by OPI Blasted Nail Polish in Blasted Silver and Revlon Scented nail polish in Grape Icy

Friday, July 29, 2011

L'Oreal Colour Riche Le Gloss

L'Oreal Colour Riche Le Gloss in shade Saucy Mauve

L'Oreal's new Le Gloss lip gloss is fabulous! I purchased this gloss in the shade Saucy Mauve, which is a universally flattering pink color. I love the light vanilla scent and taste of this gloss, as well as the not too sticky, not too greasy feel of it on my lips. The gloss has fairly good staying power, too. I have been finding it hard to resist buying several more shades!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer Favorites

Covergirl Intense Shadow Blast, Aveeno Positively Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, Tarte Smooth Operator Illuminating Serum, Tarte Natural Cheek Stain
I think everyone has a hard time finding products that work for them as the seasons change.  I have been experimenting a lot to find the right combination of products to keep me looking my best in the Summer heat and humidity. This post is devoted to sharing some of my favorite Summer products.  Personally, I like to wear lighter makeup in the Summer months, and I try to look for products that will stand up to both heat and water.

Base: I have been loving how Aveeno Positively Radiant Tinted Moisturizer (shade light to fair) mixed with a little of the Tarte Smooth Operator Illuminating Serum gives me a nice dewy look with a little coverage, as well.  These two products do a lot; I am getting moisture, SPF, coverage, and illumination all in one step.  I also add a light dusting of Laura Geller Balance N' Brighten Foundation to my T-zone to eliminate any shine.  If you haven't tried Balance N' Brighten Foundation, you are missing out; it feels super light your skin and really covers well.

Laura Mercier Pink Mosaic Shimmer Bloc, Tarte Park Ave Princess Mineral Bronzer, Laura Geller Balance N' Brighten Foundation in Fair

Bronzer: I contour my face with the Tarte Park Ave Princess Mineral Bronzer.  I really like this bronzer because it isn't too dark for my fair skin and it blends well. 

Laura Mercier Pink Mosaic Shimmer Bloc, Tarte Park Ave Princess Mineral Bronzer, Laura Geller Balance N' Brighten Foundation in Fair
Blush: For a day at the beach, I use Tarte Natural Cheek Stain in Glisten to give my cheeks just a hint of lasting color.  I have also been enjoying my Laura Mercier Pink Mosaic Shimmer Bloc for everyday because when the light catches the shimmer it looks so pretty.

Eyes: Covergirl Intense Shadow Blast Primer + Rich Shadow is perfect for Summer.  The Beige Blast and Forever Pink shades are pretty by themselves or used as primer for eyeshadow.  These do not crease and really seem to hold up well in the heat.  I just smooth some on with my finger, add a swipe of mascara and my eyes done!

L to R: Aveeno Positively Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, Tarte Smooth Operator Illuminating Serum, Tarte Natural Cheek Stain in Glisten, Covergirl Intense Shadow Blast in Forever Pink and Beige Blast
I hope you are all having a great Summer and enjoying some fun in the sun.  I'd love to know what your favorite Summer products are!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

July Birchbox


Just got my Cynthia Rowley inspired July Birchbox.  And, I have to say I am pretty pleased once again this month!

Here is what came in my box:
  • Ahava Mineral Hand Cream:  This hand cream is very similar to the one I got in a previous box, and once again, it is a wonderfully silky cream...but it smells horrible!  It has a very strong baby powder scent that is overwhelming.  It's too bad because I would likely purchase the full-sized product if it smelled better.
  • Philosophy Purity Made Simple One-Step Facial Cleanser:  This is actually a favorite cleanser of mine; so, I was happy to get a travel size bottle of it.  Check out my full review
  • Redken Shine Flash:  This is a weightless shine spray for hair.  I haven't really experimented much with this.  I have naturally shiny hair; so, I don't know if I will need to use this.  I can say that it did feel weightless in my hair and wasn't sticky.  Also, this is just a shine spray not a hair spray.
  • Zoya Touch Collection Nail Polish in Shay:  Zoya nail polishes are pretty great; they dry nicely, have good pigmentation, and don't chip easily.  Shay is a nice pearly, pink shade.  While it is not a very unique color, I was pleased to see it in my box.
  • Kind Almond & Apricot bar:  This is an all natural fruit and nut bar.  It was pretty tasty.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

New HG Brush!

Sigma E25 Blending Brush
A few months back, I bought the Sigma E25 blending brush while looking for a good eyeshadow blending brush.  And, since then it has become my HG (holy grail) blending brush!  This brush is small enough to work well as a crease brush and works wonders at blending out eyeshadow for a really seamless eye look.  Sigma brushes are really great quality brushes.  I only have a couple Sigma brushes, but I can't wait to add more to my collection!

What are your favorite makeup brushes?  Please comment below.

New Must Have Eyeliner

Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum

I have been trying out the Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum in the shade Deep Brown for the last couple months.  Prior to purchasing this eyeliner, my go-to liner was Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eye Pen; however, I had purchased a couple duds that just seemed to dry up within a couple weeks.  So, sorry Revlon, you have been replaced!  This Physicians Formula liner is awesome!  

The Physicians Formula website claims this about the liner: "High-tech formula enhances the appearance of lashes while providing the instant definition of a liquid eyeliner, in one easy step! Lash Boosting complex targets the base of lashes where it is most effective."  Essentially, the claim is that it will help your lashes grow longer over time.  I don't buy into that claim nor did I purchase the product for that reason.  But, I just love the way this liner glides smoothly and precisely onto my lids.  It has great staying power and is nicely pigmented.  This is yet another product that anyone can use; it makes applying liquid liner effortless!  This will definitely be a must have item for me for a long time to come.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Got Dark Circles? Try This!

Bare Minerals Multi-Tasking Face Concealer in shade Bisque
While I am not a huge fan of Bare Minerals products, they do have a few shining stars in their collection.  The Multi-Tasking Face Concealer being one of them.  Since Summer began, I have been using this concealer everyday as an alternative to my heavier liquid and cream concealers.  I am just amazed at the amount of coverage this powder provides while not looking heavy or settling into creases.  It feels feather light on my skin and seems to have just enough shimmer to illuminate the eye area without being sparkly.  The shade bisque works really well with my uber fair skin.  This is also a great product to top off your regular liquid and cream concealers with.  And, you can use it all over you face; I just find it works best as an under eye concealer.  To apply, I use my soft Coastal Scents Synthetic Foundation brush, but any soft bristled brush will work, just be sure to apply this product lightly and build coverage as needed.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

China Glaze Crackle Polish Rocks!

China Glaze Crackle Glaze in shade Lightening Bolt
I finally got my hands on a bottle of the oh so popular China Glaze crackle finish nail polish at Sally Beauty, and I am totally loving it!  The crackle effect looks so cool, and the polish is super easy to use.  All you need to do is apply a shade of polish as a base for the crackle polish.  Once the base polish is completely dry (I can't stress that enough!), you apply a thin coat of the crackle polish on top.  The polish will instantly crackle creating the effect seen above.  After the crackle coat is dry, apply a clear top coat.  I think this polish is great for creating a salon look quickly and easily at home.

Piggy Polish Review

Piggy Polish in All That Glitters

I picked up this nail polish because it was so darn cute!  As you can see, it comes with a tiny flower toe ring.  The idea behind Piggy Polish is that it "goes on toes" according to the label.  When I opened the polish and started applying it, I immediately noticed that it had a very strong, toxic odor.  I mean I felt like I was in a auto body paint shop!  All nail polish smells bad, but I've never had one with such a potent scent.  The polish itself went on rather streaky and took FOREVER to dry!  The lesson: A cute concept does not a good polish make.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

June Birchbox

My much anticipated June Birchbox arrived a couple days ago.  I was excited about this box because I had seen that other Birchbox subscribers had gotten full-sized Laura Geller Blush N' Brightens in their boxes.  However, I was hoping to get a blush color rather than the shade I received, which is more of a bronzer.  But $10 for a $30 product plus additional samples is still hard to beat!

Here is what came in my box:
  • Amika Obliphica Oil Treatment:  This is a blend of argan and jojoba oils that you apply to wet hair for hydration and sun protection.  I think it smells really nice but cannot say that is makes my hair feel or look different, though I do not have frizzy or sun damaged hair in the first place.
  • Kate Spade Twirl:  This perfume is okay but rather strong.  It reminds me of SJP NYC, which I prefer as it is a lighter scent.
  • Laura Geller Baked Blush N' Brighten in Honey Dipped:  This product is more of a bronzer than a blush to me with my fair skin, and a little goes a long way.
  • Pangea Organics Toner:  This toner is supposed to be an on-the-go refresher for your face.  I can't imagine spraying this on over my makeup, but it has a nice herbal scent and felt nice on my freshly washed skin.
  • Dr. Dennis Gross Powerful Sun Protection SPF 30 Towelettes:  I am anxious to try these out at the beach this summer; I like the clean and compact concept of sunscreen in a wipe.
Laura Geller Baked Blush N' Brighten in Honey Dipped

Saturday, June 11, 2011

e.l.f. Haul

e.l.f. High Definition Powder, mineral eyeshadows in Trendy and Sweet, Studio Eyeshadow "C" Brush and the Studio Small Smudge Brush
I finally broke down and ordered a few things from e.l.f..  I was hoping that Target would expand their e.l.f. selection but no such luck.  At least, I was able to save 50% on my order with a coupon code to offset the shipping costs; e.l.f. seems to have some sort of coupon deal going on all of the time.  Anyway, on to my reviews!

First, I have the e.l.f. High Definition Powder.  This is a great setting powder, comparable to CoverFX and Make Up Forever setting powders.  At $6 this is a steal; I totally recommend grabbing this over the high-end brands!

I also decided to try a couple of the mineral eyeshadows.  While I am not a huge fan of messy mineral eyeshadows, the color swatches I saw online made me want to try them out.  I adore the shade Sweet; it is a super shimmery pink, which is great for the summer.  The other shade I purchased is Trendy; I was not as thrilled with this shade.  This shadow looks paler when applied and had a lot of glittery fallout.  For $3 apiece, I think these shadows are worth a shot, especially if you like mineral eyeshadows.

e.l.f. Mineral Eyeshadow in Trendy (right) and Sweet
I purchased a couple more brushes from e.l.f.'s Studio line, the Studio Eyeshadow "C" Brush and the Studio Small Smudge Brush.  I tried using the "C" Brush to apply the mineral eyeshadows and was not very impressed; I will have to experiment a bit more with this one.  And, I have not tried the smudge brush.  Overall, I think e.l.f. makes pretty good brushes for a very low price.  My all-time favorite eyeshadow brush is their $1 Essential Eyeshadow Brush!

e.l.f. is a great brand for all you bargain lovers out there and for makeup newbies, too!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Laura Mercier Shimmer Bloc

Laura Mercier Shimmer Bloc in Pink Mosiac
I was drawn to this shimmery blush as soon as I saw it in Sephora.  And, once I swatched it, I just had to have it!  The Laura Mercier Shimmer Bloc in Pink Mosaic is a lovely, natural pink shade with a ton of shimmer in it.  Anyone who loves shimmery blushes will love these Shimmer Blocs.  You can use the colors individually or swirl them all together.  And, the lightest shade works great as a highlighter.  I recently took this compact on vacation because I could use it as both a blush and a highlighter which saved a bit of space in my makeup bag.  At $38 apiece, the Shimmer Blocs are rather expensive, but I have yet to find anything at the drugstore that compares.

Friday, May 13, 2011

May Birchbox

I received my Mother's Day inspired May Birchbox last night and tore right into it as soon as I got home!  I was pleasantly surprised to find within my box a full-sized Stila eyeshadow.  These retail for $18 each which alone makes my $10 Birchbox subscription well worth the price this month!

Here's a full list of what came in my box, as well as my initial thoughts on the products:

  • Stila eyeshadow refill pan in Starlight - This is a shimmery champagne shade that is velvety smooth and great for all over the lid or as a highlight.  If you love Stila Kitten eyeshadow, you will like this for a less sparkly alternative.  I know I will be getting a lot of use out of this lovely shade.
  • Bvlgari Mon Jasmine Noir perfume sample in spray tube - A jasmine based scent that smells divine!  I think I may have hit on a new favorite fragrance...if only I could afford $80 perfume!
  • Archipelago Pomegranate Soap - Fancy little bar of soap that smells delish!  I don't use bar soap, but can use it to keep my dresser drawers smelling fresh.
  • Ahava Dead Sea Water Mineral Hand Cream - I absolutely love the way the cream felt on my hands; I mean they were seriously silky smooth.  But, the scent is just awful; it smells like dead flowers and baby powder.  I really wish this had a different scent.
  • Birchbox treat: Tiny Prints card - Cute note card that can be customized on the Tiny Prints website
I was really pleased with my box this month!  Thanks, Birchbox!!!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Fox In a Box

Hard Candy Fox In a Box in Smooth Talker (left) and Truth Or Dare (right)

Hard Candy Fox In a Box in Smooth Talker (left) and Truth Or Dare (right)
Being a huge fan of Benefit Cosmetics boxes of powder, I just had to try these Hard Candy Fox In a Box blushes.  Foremost, the packaging is so cute and very much like Benefit's packaging.  I actually like that the Hard Candy boxes have a magnetic closure; the Benefit boxes have lids that must be removed.  As far as the actual product goes, I don't think that the colors or pigmentation are stellar with either of the blushes I sampled, but they are decent.  The blush and bronzer combo would be a good purchase for someone who is just starting to build a makeup collection or for those looking for a two-in-one product.  I'll stick with my Benefit boxes of powder for their overall better quality, but Fox In a Box is a cheap alternative.

At face value, Benefit Sugarbomb and Hard Candy Smooth Talker look pretty much the same, but they are definitely different.  You can see in my swatches below that Sugarbomb is more of a shimmery pink, while Smooth Talker is less shimmery and more of a peach shade.  Smooth Talker is also less densely packed and more powdery than Sugarbomb.  I think that Smooth Talker is an okay product, but I would not repurchase it.  I was hoping that at $8 the Hard Candy Fox In a Box would be a dupe for my beloved Benefit Sugarbomb which retails for $28.  But, no such luck!

Left to right: Hard Candy Truth Or Dare, Benefit Sugarbomb, Hard Candy Smooth Talker

Have you tried a Fox In a Box?  What are your thoughts on these blushes?