My mother surprised me with a subscription to Play! by Sephora for Christmas this year, and I am so grateful. I've already been a longtime subscriber to Ipsy and Birchbox, but Sephora's popular subscription box seems so posh and exciting.
I received my first box at the end of January. I wish the boxes shipped sooner like Ipsy and Birchbox, but it at least gives me something to look forward to throughout the month. It included six skin, hair, and beauty samples, and all came in an incredibly cute drawstring bag with a "New Year, New You" type theme.
Also in the bag was a flyer describing each product and how to use it, which is pretty standard with subscription boxes. However, on the flip side of the flyer was a twelve month "challenge" calendar that gave a new idea for each month designed to improve one's beauty and spirit. January's challenge was to calculate the amount of water to drink every day, and February's challenge is to try a new, bright lip color.
I'm a beauty lover on a tight budget, so many Sephora brands are beyond my reach. What I'm looking forward to most with this subscription is being able to try more luxury brands that I wouldn't be able to otherwise.
One such brand is Make Up For Ever, where most of the brand is out of my price range. However, in the January Play!, there was a blush sample in the shade B302. This very flattering peach shade can also be used as an eyeshadow, and I love that the sample is the perfect size for travel (like most items in the bag).
GLAMGLOW is another brand that I've rarely had the pleasure of trying because of the price tag, but I received a sample of the GLAMGLOW SUPERCLEANSE Clearing Cream-To-Foam Cleanser. I always hear fantastic things about GLAMGLOW, especially its flagship SUPERMUD mask (which I'd love to try!), and I'm looking forward to testing out this cleanser. I'm always on the market for skincare items, since my skin is something that I struggle with, so this could be promising.
Another luxury brand I've enjoyed trying is Perricone MD and its Hydrating Cloud Cream. This moisturizer has a very interesting, light texture not found in other lotions, however it is a pretty typical hydrating lotion.
Clinique has been a trusted brand in my house forever, as it was my grandmother's HG brand (and she was a stylish lady). My very first makeup was the free gifts my grandmother would give to me from Macy's when she would stock up on her beloved Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+. In January's Play! box, I received Clinique's Pep Start Eye Cream which moisturizes and brightens the under-eye area. I haven't been sleeping well lately, and I'm getting older, so any sort of eye cream is a welcome addition to my routine. I love this eye cream, and I wish I had gotten a bigger tube! I may have to take a page out of my grandmother's book and start looking to Clinique for my skincare.
Smashbox has come out with so many different takes on primer, from traditional primers to waters and oils. Recently they released Primerizer which is a combination moisturizer and primer, a concept I've wondered for years why the beauty industry hadn't made! My skin has been so dry this winter, I think I'm going to like this concept very much.
The last sample was MOROCCANOIL shampoo and conditioner. I have received a sample of this brand's hand lotion in a previous subscription box and enjoyed it, so I'm looking forward to trying their shampoo and conditioner. My only complaint is the foil packet! Do foil packets annoy anyone else, or just me?!
Overall, I was impressed with the January Play! by Sephora box, and I just got my notification email that my February box has shipped! Let the anticipation begin.
What's your favorite subscription box service? Comment below, and be sure to like my page on Facebook to keep up with my shenanigans.
Sunday, February 18, 2018
Sunday, November 5, 2017
Brow game strong. Isn't that what we all want to hear? I was fortunate to resist the overplucking phase in my younger years, so I have naturally thick eyebrows, but my black brows always seem a bit ashy and shaggy after makeup application. Brows have been the "it" trend for several years now, but I've never found anything that could help my dark, bushy brows. Now I've finally found a product that not only matches my hair color, but tames and darkens them. Sheer Tint Brow Gel from e.l.f. has quickly become a necessary part of my daily makeup routine to finish off my look.
e.l.f. Beautifully Bare Sheer Tint Brow Gel comes in four colors: clear, light, medium, and dark. I love that it has a dark shade, as my eyebrows are black and it's rare to find a brow product that matches. Usually, the deepest color is still way too brown and makes me look like I have multicolored brows (not attractive!). I was a bit concerned at first that the dark would still not be dark enough, but for $5 I was happy to give it a shot. The clear option did not interest me because my experience with clear gels is that they usually end up looking too shiny.
This brow gel features a long, thin brush with fine bristles. It can sometimes be a little too long to get the outer edges of the brows with precision, but with a light hand it is manageable. It promises a "soft hold for perfect everyday wear," and in general it fulfills that promise. If you put too much on, it can feel a bit crunchy, but I love how easy it is to apply, and create a defined and natural look without much effort. The gel lasts all day and does not flake off (I'm a photographer, so a camera is against my face for most of the day and it has yet to wear off or transfer).
Most importantly, it does exactly what I've been searching for a brow product to do: darken my eyebrows after makeup application, and even them out without adding bulk to my already thick brows. Most brow products on the market are meant to add volume to thin brows or fill in sparse spots, but I definitely don't need that. After applying my foundation and powders, my eyebrows pick up a lot of product and they look ashy and gray. Spoolies don't really get the excess product off, and I don't want to use makeup remover because that may ruin the makeup around my eyebrows. Enter the Sheer Tint Brow Gel! A couple swipes through each brow and each guy looks fresh, clean, and defined. The gel dries quickly, keeps my dark hair dark, and tames these wild beasties of eyebrows.
For $5, e.l.f. Beautifully Bare Sheer Tint Brow Gel is worth its weight in gold. Nothing frames a face quite like well-done eyebrows, and this brow gel helps to finish off my makeup like the period to this sentence. What is your favorite brow product? Comment below!
Wednesday, August 30, 2017
If you saw my previous post (here), you know I had the awesome opportunity to get a sneak peak of IT Cosmetics' fall line at their ExhibIT Beauty launch party. Already available on their website, and starting to be seen on Ulta's website, this line is full of exciting new products, and a few revolutionary ones! I fell in love with the Bye Bye Breakout Concealer, which I got to try out at the launch party and ordered on the spot. I've been trying it out for a couple weeks, so read on for my full review!
Tuesday, August 1, 2017
This past week, I had the amazing opportunity to go to my very first launch party! IT Cosmetics, a brand I love and trust, held an interactive "ExhibIT" to announce and demonstrate their new items coming out this fall, and trust me there is some good stuff coming! These are some of my favorites from the night, and I've bolded the names of the new products so you can spot them within this long post.
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Money may be tight sometimes, we've all been there. But if you're like me (aka obsessed with makeup), being broke doesn't mean you can't have a blast with beauty. It just takes some creativity, some cleverness, and some luck. Here are my top tricks and lessons learned on how to be a Budget Beauty.
Tuesday, November 29, 2016
With the holidays quickly approaching, and my bank account just as quickly shrinking, I love when I can find an affordable yet quality gift. My savvy shopper radar is always on the hunt for great gifts at fantastic prices. I want to use my powers for good and show you my Top 10 choices for great gifts under $10! Many of these are great to go along with larger gifts, or for those folks you're just not sure what to get (teachers, coworkers, neighbors, etc). All of the Top 10 are of my own opinion (and gift giving), I have not been sponsored to include anything. If you're friends with me in "real-life" stop reading, no spoilers!
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
The air is getting crisper, the leaves have turned golden, and it's time to break out all that makeup that wasn't "summer friendly." That's right, get your liquid foundations, your darkest lippies, and your boldest eyeliner out, because it's time to play. Fall is one of my most favorite times of year, primarily because I'm no longer sweating the second I step outside, but also because I get to use all my favorite makeup without fear of it melting off my face. Out of everything the fall brings, however, my favorite fall makeup trend has to be deeper eye looks. While summer is all about light and natural, anything goes in the fall!