Thursday, October 10, 2013

PopSugar Must Have Review October 2013

I can never seem to avoid spoilers for my boxes!  Try as I might, I always cave and click those spoiler links...

However, having the actual box in my hands is very different from seeing pictures online.

October 2013 Popsugar Must Have

This month, PopSugar did a Halloween/Breast Cancer Awareness theme.

First item is The Can't Cook Book: Recipes for the Aboslutely Terrified! by Jessica Seinfeld.  This is because, "the holidays are coming and you should cook for people,"... according to PS.

The Can't Cook Book

I love to cook.  I usually just wing it, but some of the things in this book look tasty.  I'm not sure if I'll keep this or not.  Nothing really compares to my kitchen bible: The New Best Recipe from America's Test Kitchen.  Now that is a cookbook.

This is my cookbook metric.
Photo from Amazon

The Can't Cook Book sells for about $17 on Amazon, but has a cover price of $27.99.

Next up, NYX Cosmetics Liquid Liner and Shadow Palette.. to look sexy this season.  Damn it, I try to look sexy every season.  Thanks, PS.

NYX Liquid Brown Eyeliner

The liner is from their "Collection Chocolat√©" and is a non-sparkly medium brown liner.  The included brush isn't bad; if you are careful you can get a very, very thin line.  Liquid liners aren't my thing, though.  I'll see if I know anyone who wants this.

NYX Smokey Palette

Also from NYX is their Smokey Shadow Palette, with 6 eyeshadows and a useless sponge applicator.

NYX Swatches, 1

I was impressed by these shadows, they have decent pigmentation even without a primer (for the most part).  I did a quick eye look with my crappy brushes (my good ones are in the car so I can do my makeup in the parking lot at work...) and it didn't turn out that bad.  I think I will definitely need to use a primer if I want it to look good and stay longer than 2 minutes.

NYX Swatches 2: Note the very sparkly shadow on the extreme left

2 minute smokey eye on my face

Liner, $6.
Palette, $7.

NYX seems to be all over my subscription boxes lately!

Gorjana Charity Bali Bead Bracelet.

TIny Gorjana Bali Bracelet

The little insert PS sends says that this color is special, for PopSugar's signature pink color, and that all proceeds from their retail site will go to a charity called Breast Cancer Connections.

Bali Bracelet next to my Alex & Ani

This is cute and dainty.  I like it, but not enough to want to pay $45 for it... even IF all of that cost will go to charity.

Bracelet, $45.

Next up is a familiar item, that was to give you a festive season-appropriate mani:
Julep 4-Free Nail Color in Coco and Freedom Polymer Top Coat.

Julep Freedom Polymer Top Coat and Julep Coco

I lucked out because I do not have this color, I like the color they sent, and I wanted to try the polymer top coat but did not want to pay what Julep charges.

Coco is an oxblood creme and goes on very smoothly in two coats.  This is an amazing fall color.  It's vampy, yet wearable, and doesn't wash me out like dark colors sometimes do.  The deep red does a great job of warming up my dead-looking hands.

Julep Coco with Freedom Polymer Top Coat over it.
I'm too lazy to clean up my nails right now.  Sorry not sorry, my couch is comfy.

The Freedom Polymer Top Coat is supposed to give a gel-like finish in 5 minutes without a UV lamp.

Coco, $14
Freedom Top Coat, $18.

If you want to sign up to be a Julep Maven ($19.99 per month, first box for free using code FREEBOX), you can do so by using my link here.  I'll get some points for referring you, and you will get Maven pricing (20% off site-wide), access to mystery boxes, and some quality polish.  You can skip a box or cancel at any time, as well as change style profiles to get whatever box you want that month.

Continuing the beauty trend (Halloween updos?), and the trend of sub boxes sending me bobby pins:

Jane Tran Thin Metallic Bobby Pins

Jane Tran Thin Metallic Bobby Pin Set.  2 sparkly green, 2 sparkly blue, and 2 sparkly gray pins (set D on their website).  These are cute, but I'm afraid they would be like all the other novelty bobby pins I've gotten recently and just rip out my hair.  These are going in the giveaway pile so one of my fine-haired friends can enjoy them.

Bobby Pins, $12.

To tie into the breast cancer awareness theme, PS sent "The Wet Brush" in a hot pink color. The company will donate 25% of its sales to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  This brush is supposed to allow you to break the cardinal rule of hair and brush it while it is wet.  The bristles do feel very thin and flexible to me.  I'll test it out after I shower tonight.

The Wet Brush

The Wet Brush, $14.  Also: Not only does this company make "the wet brush", they also sell little brushes they have deemed, "the squirts".  Yeah....

The Halloween theme continues with a more obvious item:

The Crispery Halloween Crispycake.

Giant hunk of marshmallow and crispy rice cereal.

This is a HUGE rice krispy treat with orange and black sprinkles on top. YUM.  Thanks!  I'll devour this once my nails dry.  I will share it though, because that much marshmallow would make me sick.  Also, their website tells you to share it because these things are big.  Seriously.  Diabetic comas await those who attempt to eat an entire crispycake in one sitting.

Crispycake, $3.95

Finally, PS included a $20 gift card (essentially, a waived styling fee) to Stitch Fix.

Blurry Stitch Fix Gift Card

Stitch Fix is a styling service that has you fill out a very detailed profile and sends you "fixes" of clothing and accessories that they think will fit you and that you will love.  You can let your stylist know what you liked and didn't, and what you would like to see more of.  There is a $20 styling fee per fix, that will get deducted from the price of an item if you buy something from them.  You get three days to evaluate everything before sending it back in a pre-paid bag.  If you buy everything they sent in that fix, you get 20% off of everything.

I think this is a great concept.  It's like Golden Tote, except you don't have to buy things before deciding if you like them or not!  I asked them to keep my prices low, and to send preppy casual items.  I'll be sure to put a review up when I get my items!

You can sign up using my link here, and I will get some credit to spend on their fixes.

Total Value (not counting stitch fix, and with a low book price): $136.95

Not bad.  I'll actually use some of this stuff this month!

PopSugar costs are increasing on the 4th of November to $39.95 per month. If you sign up before then, you can lock in the current pricing for 3,6, or 12 month subscriptions (about $32 per month) here.  If you use my referral link, I will earn free boxes for every so many people who join.

HOWEVER: even though they are increasing their prices, I still think that PS is a great deal.  You get full-sized (or very deluxe-sized) items each month.  The quality is almost always excellent, and the value always exceeds the amount paid for the box.  Even if you don't like something, they make great gifts.

No special consideration or compensation was received for this post and all thoughts and opinions are my own. All items mentioned within were paid for by me. This post contains referral links to Julep, Stitchfix, and Popsugar.  See above for details. 


  1. Please let me know if the Julep top coat uv without uv works! This is what I desperately need for my peeling, cracked, brittle and overall sad little nails. =( Is it like a gel substance? I had a sally hansen one that was very gel like that did a good job, but it came with a downright terrible brush! grr.

    1. I liked it way more than I expected, actually! It dried to a very hard, shiny finish in 5 minutes (as promised) and I didn't have any chipping after 3 days. The brush is nice, too. Use a different brush for the sally one?