Beauty Box 5 Believer

A few weeks ago, Doreen of Love Anela, blogged about receiving a complimentary beauty box from Beauty Box 5. I have written about my disappointment with beauty boxes in the past, and though I recently tried GlossyBox again, we soon parted ways. (I still subscribe to ipsy and FabFitFun.) I understand that I won’t like everything that comes in a beauty box delivery BUT I also  hope that if I fill out a profile, someone would  care to refer to it.  I received my first Beauty Box 5 on Monday. After the day my husband and I had, it was a sweet surprise. I was even happier when I opened it.

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The box was a nice bright sea-foam green. The items were tucked safely right in the box with shredded paper. Nothing came messy or broken. There were a few inserts included. The July box is themed “Defining Moments,” encouraging subscribers to “treasure accomplishments.” In all honesty, I’m not big on themes but I think it is nice that the company wants you to carry out a purpose.

Let’s get to the good stuff!

Revlon Bold Lacquer Mascara ($7.99 USD): This mascara is a newbie on the market. It should add volume and definition, with lift- no eyelash curler?  I can almost feel a panic attack. I have a bunch of mascaras to try but since Revlon wants us to #flashyourlash this will be the next on my list.

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HASK Argan Oil Intense Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment ($2.49 USD): I can find HASK products in the local beauty supply. I even have used their hair placenta spray (sounds gross and works wonders). This packet has a generous amount of product. It is a nourishing cream that should make my hair soft and shiny for up to two weeks. BB5 also mentions that the packet has two uses. I love argan oil and have high hopes for this one!

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Body Drench Candy Licious Lips ($3.99 USD): Skinny little tube promises to pack a candy flavored punch. They aren’t lying. I got Red Licorice and I swear I’m wearing a Twizzler. It also helps that the beeswax, coconut oil, and vitamin make for a smooth and soothing application.

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Anna Naturals Glowing Mama Walnut Face & Body Scrub ($10.99 USD 4 fl oz): A vegan scrub that is not formulated with parabens, chemicals, or harsh fragrances will be welcome in my cleansing routine. This sample should be good for about three uses.  We do end up putting about 500 chemicals on our bodies daily, something to lower that number is a help.

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Starlooks Lip Liner in Tickle Me Pink ($12.00 USD): Starlooks is another brand that offers a beauty box but seem to also be making their way into other beauty subscriptions. I have a few items from them and do enjoy using their products. Tickle Me Pink is a nice neutral pink that seems versatile.

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My first Beauty Box 5 was a success and gave me a chance to try their subscription without costing me a dime. At $12 USD a month, I think I may have to try them out for a bit!

Is that a Twizzler on your lips, or are you just happy to see me?

Is that a Twizzler on your lips, or are you just happy to see me?

Keep Calm & Primp On! XOXO

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I Have A Lot of Beauty Boxes to Recycle

There were more. Trust me.

There were more. Trust me.

And I only mean that after I have opened them and emptied the contents! I got FIVE beauty packages in the mail this week. In this post, we will take a gander at my GlossyBox and Birchbox deliveries. In the next post, we need to discuss the HauteLook Summer Beauty bag and a package all the way from someone Short (and Sweet) in Texas. I will give you a quick rundown of each box and then pick and choose the items I really think you need to know about in future posts.  Here we go!

First up is the July GlossyBox, le Grand Bleu, or the Big Blue, or the Grand Indigo (I made that up.) Very disappointing delivery- probably most disappointing of the lot and there was no magazine! Actually, that’s good news because that means things will be looking up from here. There were five products plus a “bonus.” At $21 a month, I deserve a bonus. Unfortunately, I will not use three of them and only one is a full size product and the cheapest in the box.

Okay, okay, give to my sister, okay, throw in travel bag, give to someone that needs it

Okay, give to Cindy, give to my sister, okay, throw in travel bag, give to someone that needs it

The Brazilian Blowout Acai Deep Conditioning Mask will be used up when I need to deep condition. (Remind me to tell you my Rio acai story sometime. I was fun in my 20s!)  Bvlgari Eau Parfumee au the Blanc Shampoo & Shower Gel is the third product from the white tea fragrance line. Though I like the scent, enough alread, my friend Cindy likes the smell and just like I passed off the soap to her, she will get the shower gel. Nails Inc. Baker Street Nail Polish may look like a regular bottle but it is small and I know because I already own it. My sister is lucky. That girl ends up with everything. Figs & Rouge Cherry Blossom Tinted Balm Tube is full size and is $9 US. I thought it was an L’Occitane hand cream. Nope. I will use it since I like the way the tube looks. My “bonus” is Nicka K New York Absolute! Make-Up Cleansing towelettes. I have said it before and I will say it again- they sell this brand at my local beauty supply and the make-up runs around $3 US on average. Lastly is the Evologie Intensive Blemish Serum. I rarely get acne and I like my good old tea tree to handle that.  I am not impressed with this month’s selections- they are way too run of the mill and small!

Every year, the Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW) have the Insiders’ Beauty Awards. Birchbox curated two boxes of winners. They were recently on sale- $26 for both. I thought that was pretty good and had some points left, so I managed to score both for $23.31. I’ll start with the Prestige Headliners – Birchbox for CEW. Originally priced at $18 US, this little box had the stuff you could buy at Sephora or a department store.

Birchbox Presige Box

Birchbox Prestige Headliners

Since there are so many, I’ll list:

-IT Cosmetics Brow Power Universal Brow Pencil (might be a full size- Sam over at Samandro22 got me into filling in my brows!)

-Living Proof Prime Style Extender (Decent sized tube. Eh.)

-Julep Nail Color in Teri (It’s a full bottle!)

-Julep Essential Cuticle Oil (Another biggie! For my dry cuticles, I need a miracle.)

-Elizabeth Arden Prevage Anti-Aging Triple Defense Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 50 (“Deluxe”Sample)

-La Fresh Eco-Beauty Oil-Free Face Cleanser, Scented (2 wipes. I’m cool with that.)

Next is the Birchbox for CEW Mass Market Finalists. This box is a treasure trove of drugstore finds and I have only tried two out of the six! Five of the products are full size, making for a great value.

On the cheap.

On the cheap.

-Olay Pro-X Spot Fading Treatment (Sample tube but it should last a bit because you only use a few drops at a time.)

-Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Honey (Love these!)

-L’Oreal Paris Infallible Eye Shadow in #557 Glistening Garnet (I hope it is way better than the Armani Eyes to Kill one I bought.)

-Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream (Full size tube- since I finished my most recent favorite, I will try this next.)

-Nivea A Kiss of Olive OIl & Lemon Moisture Rich Lip Care (Finally! My favorite balm is LaBello- it is Nivea in the States and this flavor is more European!)

-Simple Revitalizing Eye Roll-On (I love eye rolls…)

What do you think? I have a lot of work ahead of me, huh?

Keep Calm & Primp On! XOXO

Friday Night Beauty

Welcome to the weekend!  After writing about my husband’s shaving habits yesterday with #hydformen and knowing I have a pretty jammed packed Saturday and a probably busy enough Sunday, I figured tonight I would take care of some grooming. I started off with my eyebrows. I do them myself- I hate getting them waxed and I prefer to pluck and trim them on my own. I start by combing them up so the longs ones stand out and then I trim with an eyebrow scissor by Sally Hansen. Once I am trimmed on top, I pluck the ends with my beloved Tweezerman. My eyebrows have a decent shape so a good clean up every week or so is all I need. I don’t have a uni-brow so I don’t have to deal with it. I might test out some eyebrow powder tomorrow to fill in the sparse spots which I think are more evident in photos or it could just be the fact that I just ignore them.

Giving myself a haircut.

Giving myself a haircut.

Once I was done plucking, I washed my face with my favorite Moody Sisters Foaming Wash and then applied NUXE Paris Masque Creme Fraiche de Beaute. (That is missing all sorts of accent marks. Just saying.) It is a 24 hour soothing mask that hydrates skin. Truth is I was afraid to try it. I will now have to buy it. I applied it and left it on for about 40 minutes (The website says ten minutes. Like I ever pay attention. My little sample tube had no instructions.) It smells like oolong tea and jasmine. As it penetrated my face, it got a bit oily so I got a wash cloth and gently removed it. My skin is so soft right now that I might actually have to buy this.

You do want to touch my face. It's a little scary.

You do want to touch my face. It’s a little scary.

My last step was painting my nails. I did go for a manicure and pedicure this week but the polish started to chip and look blah so I took it all off. At least my cuticles look good and my nails kept their shape. I painted on a coat of NailTek Foundation II and then two coats of Revlon Color Stay Longwear Nail Enamel in Trade Winds. On my ring finger, I applied two coats of P2 Sand Style Polish in Strict. (Thanks to Girl in the Glasses!) I love this sand polish because it had a shiny application and I don’t mind it shiny. Then I used Nails Inc. Nail Caviar Topcooat (dries polish in 45 seconds!)  Here is what I got!

Conservative with a little edge.

Conservative with a little edge.

My hubs put on “Battleship.” I figured out the entire plot in the first five minutes (maybe less) and then the whole reason why I would even watch the movie got killed off. Right now, I see water and smoke on my TV screen. And a pretty blonde.

What did you do tonight? I hope you were out and carousing!

Keep Calm & Primp On! XOXO

Gucci Goes West

Post #125 already? I can’t believe that I have managed to write 125 posts, 99% about cosmetics. I guess I need to get a hobby… Anyhow, I’ve been getting a lot of make-up mail lately- a free deluxe sample of Bobbi Brown mascara, three Catrice eyeshadows from the lovely Sonia at Sweet MakeUp Tempations, an ipsy bag, and two deliveries from BirchBox. Today, I received the Revlon Edition from totalbeauty collection. It was $15.00 US and in it are four full size Revlon products from the Pacific Coast Collection by Gucci Westman. Considering most Revlon products run anywhere from $7.49 US- $14.00 US, this seemed to be a good deal. My sister, that lucky girl, is getting one, too.

The dress is a little Rainbow Brite, no?

The dress is a little Rainbow Brite, no?

I’ll keep the post brief, as I am half watching “Hannibal” and half pretending to be an FBI agent typing some top secret documents. (I’m fortunate to have a fabulous imagination. Who needs Calgon?)

FBI agent in 1939

FBI agent in 1939 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I love Emma Stone and am happy that she is the spokeswoman. Something about her just seems, I don’t know, familiar? She is attractive but I really don’t feel she follows the Hollywood standard of beauty. She could be my friend.

She looks snazzier than usual here.

She looks snazzier than usual here.

The pamphlet has instructions for four looks. I photographed two. I rarely ever use these but I think I should try one. We’ll see how inspired I feel this week.

I always wanted to look like a surfer girl.

I have always wanted to look like a surfer girl.

The Revlon Colorstay palette in #585 Sea Mist has four shades: a light shimmery peach, dark amethyst, a blue shimmer shadow that errs on gray, and the green, a sparkling emerald.

The polish is Revlon Colorstay Longwear Nail Enamel in #320 Trade Winds. I happen to like this polish, as it does last. I just threw out the base coat, too, because it was old. Le sigh.

I will be beach ready. Not that I wear make-up to the beach.

I will be beach ready. Not that I wear make-up to the beach.

I also received two Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters in #047 Pink Lemonade, a light pink and #053 in Sorbet, a bright pink. People love the Lip Butters, as do I, and the colors are sheer yet can be layered for more pigmented glossy goodness.

Like Lip Buttah!

Like Lip Buttah!

That’s all I got for now. Keep an eye out in the coming weeks for my ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY as the PRODUCT HOOCHIE.

Keep Calm & Primp On! XOXO

Poring over Products- This is a LOT of Stuff

Last time I updated was Saturday. My apologies for not coming by sooner but this week and next are going to be so busy that I’m not sure when I will be able to fit in some time to write. I got a number of products last week and I have tried out quite a few of the items I received so I will give you a bit of a head’s up as to what I like and what I find to be eh.

First up, my package from Beauty.com. I never really purchased anything from Beauty.com but my friend, Michelle, gave me a gift card for my birthday. I was excited to use it, as Beauty.com carries some excellent products. I did not really like the layout of the website but I managed. Luckily for me, if I spent $100, I would get a really cool looking make-up bag filled with deluxe samples. I ordered:

Purchased!

Purchased!

DermaDoctor Total Nonscents, Ultra-Gentle Antiperspirant ($20 US): More than I would normally spend on antiperspirant but I really suffer from itchy pits (sorry). They get very dry and the skin is very sensitive. I actually really like this antiperspirant. I don’t smell like fake flowers- in fact, I stay dry and don’t smell at all! I think this may have to become my regular antiperspirant.

Vapour Organic Beauty Mesmerize Eye Color Shimmer in Sugar ($18 US): I like that this is a stick eye shadow. It makes throwing it into my bag nice and easy. Sugar is very sheer and it brings pretty light to the eye area. I am curious as to how the other colors are.

Bare Minerals Remix Collection Loud & Clear Lip Sheer in Amped Pink ($15 US): Haven’t tried this yet but the tube is blue and the pink is bright. I’m thinking it will be sheer with better color pay out.

Smashbox Megatint Long Wear Lip Color in Whirl: Another one I need to get on my lips, Whirl is a pretty, natural looking pink. Megatint is supposed to fall somewhere between a lipstick and a stain and I am intrigued. I will let you know!

Yu-Be Lip Therapy ($5 US): A Japanese staple, Yu-Be makes lotion, cream, and lip balm. I love the camphor smell!

Lucy B!

Lucy B!

Lucy B Perfume Roll-On Oil, Royal Egyptian Amber & Honeysuckle ($24 US): Wasn’t too sure what to expect. I like amber. I like honeysuckle. I opened the roll-on and it smelled very similar to Hanae Morae.

Finally, my free gift. A great cosmetics bag with samples from Caudalie, Stila, Murad, Peter Thomas Roth, etc, tucked inside.

Free!

Free!

Onto Ulta…

I miss being near an Ulta. When I was in college, I would take a weekly trip and browse the aisles. That was about 10 years ago and now, Ulta has upped their game. The sell a nice mix of drugstore and higher end brands in one place. (FYI: Prices listed are from Ulta.com and are per piece.)

Color Sensational Color Whisper Lipcolor  by Maybelline Whow Red Red-er ($7.49 US) : I have not tried this color but have tried another Color Whisper. I think there are better sheer lipsticks but this one is lovely and not waxy.

Volum’Express The Rocket Waterproof Mascara by Maybelline in Very Black ($7.99 US): Lindz, over at Girl in the Glasses, loves this mascara, so I had to order it at her recommendation. I have to finish my current tube and a mini and I will go onto this.

Color Stay Ultimate Suede Lipstick by Revlon in Supermodel & Trendsetter($9.99 US): I tried Supermodel, a really sweet plum. And suede was this lipstick! It went on smoothly and lasted for about 3 hours without a touch-up. (It would have lasted longer if I didn’t drink that small glass of wine.)

Treat & Boost by Revlon ($7.99 US): Another nail treatment-I am really just hoping for a miracle here.

Butter Gloss  by NYX Cosmetics in Merengue & Strawberry Parfait ($4.99 US): I read about these glosses on a few blogs and was going crazy that I could not find them in my local beauty supply store. I also was under the assumption that they were lipstick bullets, not wand glosses. Duh- I was wrong. Merengue is a pale lilac pink and I was surprised how nice it looked on me. I always find that color to look chalky and I do not like the corpse-lip look. This gloss had enough shine to make the color pretty and wearable. Strawberry Parfait is now permanently in my bag and I use it often. It is way brighter in the gloss tube but when applied, is a natural pink. Both glosses are very soft, smooth, and go on like a dream. Well done, NYX!

Ulta Haul!

Ulta Haul!

XXXL Shine Lipgloss  by Essence in Big Night Out 07 ($2.49 US): I find Essence to be the underdog! I think some of their products are terrific. I didn’t like the last Essence gloss I bought so I ordered this one. I didn’t realize how shimmery it would be- I guess that is part of the lip plumping factor. It is a pretty pink gold but  I think I will stick to Essence eye products from this point on. The lip products aren’t my cup of tea.

French Manicure Tip Guides by Essence (.99 US): Since I am getting more adventurous with my nails I ordered these. I’m not sure how well they work, but for under a buck, I can deal.

Cleansing Hair-To-Toe Baby Wash by Philosophy ($10 US): Remember my itchy pits? I bought this because it is for babies. I currently use Aveeno’s baby wash for super dry skin and I thought I would give Philosophy a turn in my tub.

All in all, I spent too much money but I had plenty of fun doing it!

I have issues.

I have issues.

Keep Calm & Primp On! XOXO

Seeing Red

I’ve been wearing vibrant lipsticks for the past year or so after a long relationship with lip gloss. Don’t get me wrong- I love lip gloss but there comes a time when that shiny gooey-ness just does not cut it. At first, people would look at me funny. A few commented positively and I was a little self-conscious but there was no turning back.

My Red Lippy Compact!

I love red lipstick. I love, love, love it. Red lipstick is classic and bold. It says “Look at me” without being trashy. It is delicious. Today, I wore red lipstick to work.  I have several shades and consistencies. I have reds when I am feeling especially brave, reds for fun, and reds for the weekend. Sounds silly, I know, but red lipsticks are like pairs of shoes- you need a kick a$$ pair, a knocking around pair, and a pair for work.

I decided to sample seven (yes, seven) reds. The price range starts at $2.99 (NYX) and ends at $12 (Sephora brand). I didn’t choose MAC or Lipstick Queen lipsticks. I know MAC has very popular reds but figured a bunch of people probably have swatched them.

Seven Reds!

I honestly did not use any lip liner when trying out the reds. I can’t find this ELF pencil anymore, which is clear and creates a barrier between your lip and the rest of your face. Red lipstick is a creeper and this cuts it off at the pass. Let’s begin!

NYX Lip Smacking Colors in Fire LSS 599 is a smooth lipstick. It has a very light vanilla scent. So light in fact, it is hardly noticeable. When applied, it gives good coverage and a nice shine. It isn’t sticky or too thick but surprisingly long-lasting for a lipstick with such sheen. For $2.99 it is a good deal.

It’s more of a pinky red but totally work appropriate.

Brucci Lipstick might be an exclusively New York brand. I honestly do not know but have not seen it anywhere else. I’ve been wearing this brand forever and I mean this. I got my first Brucci lipstick when I was 5. It was a deep shimmering purple. Moving on… Brucci Lipstick in Marette’s Red #106 goes on smooth. This is another lipstick with a light, though slightly perfumy scent. Marette’s Red seems like another slightly pink but deeper red. It will be $3.49 well spent.

Brucci also makes the best nail polish. THE BEST.

Now, onto a more sheer shade. I have been a fan of Revlon‘s Lip Butters since they were released. I like their buildable color and if you wear a lip liner, the color becomes more opaque. I happen to like Cherry Tart #070. It is very moisturizing and shiny. It gives the lips a sweet glow. The only downside is that it needs to be reapplied pretty often. That’s okay because I like it so much. It is around $7.99 at most mass retailers.

Sheer lips… perfect for downtime.

One of my favorite colors of all time is L’Oreal‘s British Red #350. The gold tube is always classy and one swipe of this color means business. This is a true, Union Jack red! The lipstick smells strongly of violets but that is fine with me. I have to say that this has very good staying power and good coverage. It is not for the faint of heart.

I applied with a light touch. A little bit of a heavy hand and you are ready for anything.

The last three lipsticks are all Sephora Rouge Cream Lipstick.  I have to admit, I am a little partial. For $12.00, Sephora provides a high quality lipstick with good pigmentation. The scent of the lipstick is kind of sweet, like grapes or moscato if you’re feeling fancy.

First up is Rouge Cream R05 aka Hot Tango. When my sister and I found this color last fall it was like “AHHHH” (sing that in an angelic voice.) It is a bright pink red and it will turn heads. Trust me. It has a nice satin finish and good lasting power.

Hot Tango on my lips. SYTYCD in a tube.

It Girl R06 is described as a “muted coral tangerine.” That is way too complicated for me and when I wear it, it looks like an orange based red. My sister bought me this after we read a review about the color. I was a little scared that an orangey red would look terrible and that she wasted $12, but alas, I get the most wear out of this one. My sister, who is paler than me, actually wore it as Envy Adams fairly recently. She was afraid that she would have the same issue but with her blond wig, it looked good.

I’m puckering up like a fish.

Finally, we get to the last red lipstick… Valentine R09… it is magenta! Blue based since magenta is purple-y, Valentine is a color that I adore. It’s a little more fun. It is my “Who do you think you’re talking to?” color.

Huh?

A few things… a clear liner works wonders. It helps keep the color in place. You can fill your lip in, too, and the color will not be altered.

-Finding a perfect red may take a few tries. MAC’s Ruby Woo is touted as a universal red. I have it and it is great! Check it out.

-Stains are a good way to try reds. I happen to like Revlon’s Just Bitten Lipstain in Flame.

-Red is a high maintenance color. Don’t be shy to reapply! (Thanks CD!) In fact, you will have to a few times to maintain the look.

-Be not afraid. Try it. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to wear it again BUT I’m pretty sure you will.

Primp On! XOXO