Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September Birchbox!

Hello again lovelies! Today I'm going to introduce you to another great beauty subscription service that gives you all the glamour without the wallet pain!

   Birchbox is a beauty subscription service that helps you feel glamorous without
breaking your pocket. You pay 10 dollars a month (free shipping) for beauty samples 
and other goodies, and earn points towards future purchases on their website through
product reviews.
   So far I really like Birchbox, and was very excited to see what I was getting
this month. For my September box I received a little bit of everything in my
opinion. I was missing something from my box, but I called customer service and
they promptly sent me a new one. Their customer service is top tier, no

   Continuing in following new fall trends, Birchbox sent along with products a
mini booklet showing upcoming styles for fall, along with beauty tips and product recommendations. Along with the booklet, I received a Color Club nail polish, a sample of Kate Spade's fragrance Twirl, a hair tie by Twistband, a Tili bag, and a sample tube of The Porefessional face primer by Benefit Cosmetics. There was also a little something extra, a $25 gift card for Madewell.com, which I was sad to see was just a mere coupon and not an actual gift card, and two mp3 downloads from singer Tristan Prettyman.

   Unfortunately, my replacement of the Nexxus Pro Mend Split End Treatment has not gotten to me yet, and I don't expect it to be here until some time in October. Maybe it'll come in next month's box.

Color Club Nail Polish in "Insta-This" ($8.00 on birchbox.com)

    Following the trend and popularity of social networking, Color Club created a
line of polishes with names referring to different social networking sites. I
got Insta-This, a really pretty blue. I really like the color, reminds me of
Facebook! It dries super fast too, I had just applied the first coat and a
minute or so later when I checked it was already finished. Definitely a great
polish, and worth checking out the other colors in the collection!

Kate Spade Twirl ($80.00 on birchbox.com)

   This fragrance is very floral. It's a little strong at first, so one spritz is more
than enough. After it lightened a little I was able to better enjoy it. I don't
know if I'd buy the full size, but I'm glad I got to try it.

Twistband Hair Tie ($18.00 for 12pk on birchbox.com)

   I thought this was cute, the hair tie I received had a purple lace design. I was
able to tie my ponytail tight enough that it stays put, but loose enough that I
don't get any headaches. I may buy more, I really like the designs. And if you don't want to put them in your hair they make great bracelets!

The Porefessional ($29.00 on birchbox.com)

   This is a face primer that is supposed to help reduce the visibility of pores, so I was excited to try this. It has a faint scent that is nice, and has a velvety texture that feels really nice on the skin. You can also put this on before or after applying makeup which I like. If I forget to do it the first time I can do it right after! I would definitely buy the full version of this!

Tili Bag ($8.49 for 12 quart size bags on birchbox.com)

   These bags are so cute! I love the design on the one I got, and when I went to the Birchbox site I saw other super cute ones! This bag is a stylish ziplock that can be used for storing cosmetics or maybe adding flare to lunch! These reusable bags are so versatile, I will definitely be getting more!

Nexxus Pro-Mend Split End Treatment

   I have used Nexxus before, and it is a good brand. One of the shampoos I tried had a kind of Vanilla Coconut scent that I liked. As I stated before my sample of this didn't come in my box, so I will have to wait a little while for it get here before trying and reviewing. But from my previous experience with Nexxus I knew I was going to like it.

   Did you like what you saw? Check out Birchbox and see what you're missing! Want to try out this awesome beauty service? Sign up for Birchbox here!

September Beauty Army Box!

   I wanted to post a review when I received last month's box, but there was an issue with my box coming to me damaged. On the plus side their customer service is great! I emailed them and they sent me a replacement for the damaged product in last month's box, so it came to me this month.
   Beauty Army is a monthly subscription service that sends you deluxe beauty
samples for 12 dollars a month plus free shipping. You complete a beauty profile and every month when your selection window opens (which depends on when you joined) you get to
select 6 samples. You have 5 days to select what you want, and you can retake your beauty profile quiz to change some of the samples you can receive!

Such lovely goodies!

   This month I was very impressed with what I received. Initially I wasn't happy
with the samples available when my window first opened, so I waited a day or so
and retook my quiz a few times to change what I could possibly get. In this
months box I received a sample of Besame Cosmetics Crimson Cream Rouge,
Youngblood Mineral Primer, Fiafani Divine Hydration Moisturizer, Juicy Jewel eau
de Parfum, Atzen Lip and Eye Emulsion, Delizioso Skincare Mangosteen and Acai
Facial Cream, and Grand Central Beauty Smart Skin Perfecting Mask.

Besame Cosmetics Crimson Cream Rouge (full size $22.00)

   My go to lip color is red, so I was really excited to try this! This rouge can be used on cheeks and lips, but I don't think my cheeks need any more red in them, and I was set on this being exclusively for lips. It is creamy and rich, and the color is really nice. And used with a lip brush a little can go a long way! My sample was a small jar, but I know it'll last so long as I use a brush. I am not sure if I will buy a full size, but my mini jar will hold me off til I decide!

What a nice color, soft and playful :)

Youngblood Mineral Primer (full size $41.00)

   This primer is a gel, making it very light on the skin. Since I received a small sample I only used a bit to feel its texture, it is sleek but not oily. It felt nice on my skin. I'm not sure I will buy a full size of this but it was nice to try. 

Fiafani Divine Hydration Moisturizer (full size $38.50)

   This moisturizer is supposed to help fight aging while moisturizing skin. I just sampled it, so I cannot say for certain whether this is an effective product. It smells nice, isn't heavy, and felt nice on my skin, but I have yet to see a difference as of yet. 

Juicy Jewel eau de Parfum (full size $55.00)

   I love this perfume! I swear I was able to smell it as soon as I opened the box! (which at first I thought to be a bad thing) After realizing that the bottle didn't break, I immediately gave my wrist a spritz. I embraced the sophisticated yet light floral notes and was immediately sold on this product. I am unsure whether I wish to pay $55.00 for it for now, so I will hold on to this sample for dear life until I can either afford it or find it for a better price!

Atzen Lip and Eye Emulsion (full size $75.00)

   This is supposed to help reduce dark circles around eyes as well as signs of aging and sun damage on eyes and lips. I used a bit under my left eye to see the difference and i have to say it did help a bit. I put it on before bed, and when I woke up I was able to see a change in the dark color under my left eye compared to my right. It melted into my skin quickly which I thought was nice, it didn't stay on top of my skin like other eye creams I've tried. I will continue to use this sample to see if there is a significant difference in the darkness of the circles under my eyes!

Delizioso Skincare Mangosteen and Acai Facial Cream (full size $58.00)

   This cream is an anti-aging fighter and is loaded with antioxidants to nourish skin! This sample looked very promising so I couldn't wait to try it!

   This cream has a whipped appearance, but it's thick, like cake icing. It has little blue beads in it that burst when you put in on your face. It  smells very yummy! It melted on my face, and didn't feel oily. The price for the full sized one is a little steep, but it seems like it would last a really long time! So I may consider buying this, I enjoyed the experience!

Grand Central Beauty Smart Skin Perfecting Mask ($75.00 for 4 mask systems)

   Okay, so this was the sample that I received damaged. I was very excited to try it and review it last month, but when I saw all the powder fall out of the box I was so upset I didn't bother to review the others. Luckily The Beauty Army team has great customer service and I heard from them the very next day after letting them know what happened! 
   So this was definitely different from what I'm used to! It was kind of fun doing the prep work! Basically you have to mix everything up and generously apply it to your face. The set comes with a mixing bowl, which was the clear container this sample came in. (I almost threw it out!) The process is really simple, you take the mask powder capsule, the vial of booster serum, and a capsule of cold tap water  and mix it together in the bowl. (in that order!) When its ready for application it's going to look like this:

   It basically becomes a putty like substance. But you gotta work fast! After a little while the mix starts to harden and become almost like latex! Make sure to apply generously and keep away from hair and eyes!

I felt like I was wearing horror movie skin!
   As you can see from the picture, my mask started to chip away, maybe I didn't apply it quick enough, or maybe I didn't use enough on my face. Honestly it was a huge pain to take off, but it was kind of funny because it looked like I was peeling my skin off! (I'm a big fan of horror movies, so this made the experience more fun.) Despite the long process of removing the mask piece by piece, I have to say I liked the results! My skin looked brighter, cleaner, and felt very soft! 
   4 masks for 75 dollars might be a bit pricey, but I really liked the results! Maybe I will purchase this in the future, but I am very glad I got to treat my skin to a nice peel for way less!

   So if you're interested in treating yourself to luxury without the massive spending, you can join Beauty Army by clicking here!

Julep Mystery Boxes for September: Polish Lovers and Product Lovers Box

   Julep just loooooves to tempt people with these alluring mystery boxes! I can't 
resist every time i see a new one!  Each mystery box costs 19.99, and can be 
worth anywhere from 60 to 200 dollars! This time around they put out two boxes, 
one with just nail products and the other with different Julep products. Of 
course, being unable to help myself, I got both. 

   I was a little disheartened when I saw my boxes were small, but I was very happy 

with what I received anyway. Both my boxes were worth about 60 dollars, so still 
totally worth it. 

Polish Lover Box

From left: Zoe, Alyson, Michelle, Melissa

In my polish box I received 4 nail polishes:

Melissa ($14.00)

   A pearly white. It took 2 coats to make it more noticeable. I have never had a color like this before, so I'm glad I got this. I really like the shimmer, and find this to be a very sophisticated yet playful color.

Alyson ($14.00)

   An almond brown. Initially I thought this to be a gray, but in the light you can see the difference. This is yet another color range I've never used, I always considered browns to be kind of boring. I ifnd this shade to be very classy, and the polish is very creamy. I only needed one coat! Definitely glad I got a chance to try this, it opened me to a new color possibility!

Michelle (doesn't seem to be available on website)

   A dark blue. Very classy and sophisticated.  This is also very creamy, so only one coat should be necessary. I love blue polish, but I tend to stick to lighter blues because I had never seen a dark blue I like. This is a very pretty color and I'm glad I was able to get one!

Zoe (does not seem to be available on website)

   An orange shimmer. Kind of reminds me of Halloween! And since the holiday is coming up, I may use this as my October color, along with another color I will be receiving in next month's Maven box. I have never ever considered an orange polish. It isn't that I don't like orange, it just never seemed to be my style. I like that this color isn't so loud, so I can see myself wearing this anytime! This color took me two coats to complete, but I loved the results! And with fall officially here, I think this color is perfect!

Product Lover Box

Got some nice stuff!

   In my product box, I received a bottle of Acetone-Free Conditioning Nail Polish 

Remover, Best Pedi Prep Ever Roll On, a Foot File, Essential Cuticle Oil, and a 
Vanilla Mint SPF 15 Lip Balm.

Acetone-Free Conditioning Nail Polish Remover ($14.00)

   I received a bottle of this with August's Maven box, and I loved it! It smells nice, and leaves my nails nice and clean! I love that there's a pump on it too, so no need to fight with a bottle and hope none spills on your lap! (happened to me all the time!) I'm glad I got another bottle since I'm running low on my first one. the best part about these bottles is that they're reusable! Once you finish what's in it, put another ppolish remover and never be bothered with mishaps again! 

Best Pedi Prep Ever Roll On and Foot File ($20.00)

   This was a nice combo to try. The roll on has a weird smell, but it didn't bother me. It feels kind of like a gel, but definitely works. I tried it on my heels, I tend to get dry skin there often. After letting my skin absorb the roll on for a few minutes I took the file and got to work. The file is pretty big so I had good control over smoothing my heels. The file has four parts for use, two have emery for filing and the other two I honestly have no clue what they're for or how to use them. But the file is great paired with this roll on! My heels felt so smooth, and my feet felt like they were pampered at a spa! I will continue to use these to improve my feet, I'm always running around so they definitely deserve some tlc!

Essential Cuticle Oil ($18.00)

   I liked this a lot! On the first use my cuticles looked way better! It has a soft but nice scent, and is roll on for easy application. I had never even thought to use something like this, so i'm glad I got this! 

Vanilla Mint SPF 15 Lip Balm ($6.00)

   This feels nice on my lips, but I have to say it tastes pretty bad. It has no actual flavor to be honest, although the site clearly says it is vanilla mint flavored. It definitely smells like it, but it also has somewhat of a chocolatey underlying scent to me. The scent reminds me of Christmas! When you put it on it feels tingly and my lips feel hydrated. The added bonus of it having SPF 15 in it made it even better, I get to protect my lips from dryness and sun damage!

   Some of these colors may not be available online but Sephora carries them in store so you can stop in and check them out!

   Did you like what you saw? Julep has a lot more great products so check out their site! Want to be a Julep Maven and get a bunch of perks? sign up here! And remember if you use the promo code PENNY you can get your introductory box for literally a penny! 

Later lovelies! <3

Monday, September 24, 2012

Disney Princesses And Sephora!

   Hello again! This is something I just had to let you all know about, it's one of the greatest bits of makeup news EVER!

   I am a huge Disney fan! And I love all the princesses! So when I got the email that Sephora was doing a collaboration with Disney I was overjoyed! And the first princess to debut in October, Cinderella!

   When I was 11, my aunt gave me a beautiful Cinderella perfume as a thank you for being in her wedding. It was so pretty, it even had the glass slipper on top! I used that bottle to the very last drop, and tried my hardest to preserve the bottle just because it was so pretty. Over time I lost the bottle, and was really disheartened because that was a memory that was very dear to me. But now with this new line by Sephora coming out, I can make a new memory while keeping the old one in mind. <3

Absolutely gorgeous!
   The Cinderella Collection is the first one hopefully of many princess collections to be released! The collection includes a fragrance aptly named "So This is Love", a gorgeous compact mirror modeled after the iconic clock of the movie, a 20 piece eyeshadow palette with colors based on the original pantones of the characters and scenes, a smaller palette with colors you can use to recreate the iconic look, a set of gorgeous lipsticks (which I already bought!) featuring shades based on Cinderella's various looks throughout the movie, and a glamorous 6 piece set of nail polishes by OPI that mirror the enchantment that spellbound us all! 

   I am a Sephora Beauty Insider, so as such I got a first look and buy before it hits stores in early October! So for all of you just as eager to see what's coming your way, here's a sneak peek!



   Oh! And for those of you looking for the wow factor in the collection, if everything else didn't get ya here is the icing on the gorgeous princess cake!

  That there is the special edition bottle of "This is Love" adorned with Swarovski crystals! The perfect item to make any girl feel like a princess! 

   So check out Sephora in early October to snag this beautiful collection! If you would like to be a Beauty Insider sign up at Sephora's website or any store! And if you already happen to be a Sephora Beauty Insider, get your piece of princess glam now before it hits stores!

Julep Maven September Box!

   So I have been meaning to post up a Julep review for a while now, but things 
have been so hectic! But now that I have some free time I'm going for it! 

   Julep is a company that specializes in nail beauty, they have salons as well. 
The Julep Maven program is a monthly subscription where they send you full sized 
nail polish and products for only 20 dollars a month plus free shipping. In stores their polishes go for about 14 dollars each, and their other products can be a bit pricey. But 
being a maven gets you more for less! You get colors before they hit stores, and 
discounts on their website through the maven boutique, plus free shipping all 
the time! When you sign up you complete a beauty profile so they can match you 
to one of 5 styles: Boho Glam, American Beauty, Classic with a Twist, Bombshell, 
and It Girl. The cool thing is that if you don't like the box for your profile one month you can 
look at other boxes and pick one of those instead!

   September is all about fashion, what's hot this season and what will be the 
biggest trends all across the world of style! So Julep took a page from Fashion 
Week and created this month's box based on the fashion of designer Trina Turk. 
In this month's box I received two nail polishes inspired by Trina Turk's 
Maverick Collection, and Julep's American Beauty Volumizing Mascara.

My September Box! It's so pretty!

   My profile is Clasic with a Twist, so I was super excited when I got the email showing what I'd be getting!  I received two nail polishes inspired by the Trina Turk collection,  Sophie and Brandt, and Julep's American Beauty Volumizing Mascara in Jet Black.

Sophie (unavailable on Julep.com)

   A dark mushroom like grey. Very creamy, opaque and classy! I only needed one coat for full coverage! Fall calls for warm colors, and this color is perfect to tying together a fashionable winter ensemble!

Brandt ($14.00)

   An off-black. Also very creamy and applies nicely. I love black polish, so when I saw this in the box i was really excited! At first I thought it looked almost navy, but when I applied it I saw the difference. I'm glad I got this color, black polish is nice but I find it to be a generic look sometimes. With this off-black it's more classy and less gothic. (not that I have anything against goth, I have my moments!) With this color you can show your dark side and feminine side at the same time!

American Beauty Volumizing Mascara - Jet Black ($24.00)

How does it look? :)
   I love this mascara! It's not heavy, and thick enough that it applies evenly. My lashes look nice and long too! It isn't difficult to take off, I used Lancome's Bifacil (GREAT STUFF!) to remove it from my eyes. Only thing I have to say as a con is that it smudges easy, but maybe a makeup setting mist might help. Either way if you have any anti smudging secrets I'd love to know! And if you can make this smudge free this is definitely a great mascara!

   So would you like to enjoy all the perks of becoming a Julep Maven? You can sign up here! And if you use the promo code PENNY you can get your first box for just that!