Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Ipsy April 2014

Ipsy April 2014

Ipsy survived the monsoon and my mailman was able to deliver it without needing to canoe through the streets. I was really, really looking forward to this month after seeing my updated Glam Room!

The bag itself
This bag is a lot bigger than normal! It is taller, which is nice if I want to carry around long brushes. They will fit diagonally in this without getting the bristles smushed. 

Demeter Jasmine Roll On Perfume Oil

I've really been getting into indie perfumes lately, and was not as bummed as I normally would be to see this in my bag. Demeter roll ons are not that potent, and don't last that long, so wearing this isn't an all day commitment. This smells like jasmine, which is warm and floral, and faintly tropical. It is perfect for warm summer nights! The single note can also be used to layer with other fragrances, to create something new.  

Old bottle, left.  New bottle, right.

I got a different roll-on from Demeter in a previous Ipsy bag, and the bottles have changed! They both are 0.29 fl.oz., but the new round bottle looks a lot bigger. 

Blurry, sorry :( 

I guess it makes you think you are getting more product for your money?

$10 for 0.29 fl.oz. 

Midnight Fountain polish by Rainbow Honey

This nailpolish by rainbow honey is one of the items I was really looking forward to! I have lusted over their polishes for so long! They have amazing glitter combos, like this one, midnight fountain.

Glitters! So many glitters!
This is a bright blue jelly packed with glitter! There are large iridescent and dark blue hexagons, medium iridescent squares, small iridescent hexagons, and lots of shimmers! 

2 coats of Midnight Fountain

It is pretty grainy on, and will need a thick layer of top coat if uneven nail surfaces bother you. 

This polish is exactly what I hoped it would be! It dried fast and takes all the work out of putting together a perfect jelly sandwich. 

Rainbow Honey polishes are 15 mL for $10, making the 5 mL sample worth $3.33.

I've gotten this same product in Birchbox before. I actually really like it! It is a scrub with very fine particles, that noticeably exfoliate your face. It is too harsh to use every day, but I have been doing it once a week and am happy with the results... as long as I scrub gently. Plus, it smells like lemons!

Full size is $78 for 2 oz., making the 0.25 oz sample worth $9.75

Mary Kay At Play Jelly Gloss in Berry Me

Mary Kay At Play jelly gloss in Berry Me isn't something I would have picked for myself, and all I can see when I look at the logo is AOL! Didn't they have the @ sign with a triangle?

I tried to spread it into a heart shape... somewhat successfully? It was too sticky to really have any kind of precision.

After this swatch, I was really afraid the gloss would be super sticky on my lips, because it was super sticky on my hand. It was.  This is like trying to spread half-melted taffy around!

Rainy days suck.  Rainy day hair sucks. This lipgloss also kinda sucks.

It is nice and sheer, and also unflavored and unscented. It goes on wicked sticky, and isn't slick, so it lasts longer than slippery glosses do.  I am a fan of the color, and how long it lasts, but I am not a fan of the texture.

9.5 mL sells for $10

Urban Decay 24/7 Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil

Here it is! The reason I was the most excited for this month's Ipsy! A brand new UD 24/7 liner in black velvet. This was touted as a super intense matte black. 

Black Velvet, if you please!

If you like ultra black eyeliners, this is for you! I compared it to all my other black 24/7 liners as seen below:

What? You don't have 5 slightly different black eyeliners from the same brand?
Don't judge me.

Perversion, the top line, was my deepest matte black up until now. Check out black velvet! It is black like my soul! This is the inkiest epitome of black I have ever seen in an eyeliner. It is UNREAL. 

It has a slightly different texture than my other 24/7 liners, though.  It is a little harder and not as smooth during application as the other blacks in my collection.  The difference isn't anything drastic, but I use these eyeliners every day (I don't ever wear any other liners BUT 24/7!), so it was something I picked up on.  If you aren't as obsessed with this product as I am, you probably won't tell.

This is travel-sized, 0.03 oz, and the full-size (0.04 oz) is $20, making the sample worth $15.

April 2014 Ipsy

Total value: $58.08

All together, I think this was a great month of Ipsy. The UD and Rainbow Honey, plus a spare of the microdermabrasion scrub? Awesome. The perfume was better than expected and overall I am happy. I'll ignore the gloss.  For only $10, I got a great deal this month!

$10 per month will get you 5-6 samples from Ipsy, and they are usually full or deluxe sample sizes.  You fill out a profile and Ipsy tries their best to match you with the products that you would like the best.  It's hit or miss, but the value of the bag is always way higher than the price you pay!

If you want to try it out, please use my signup link here.  I'll get some bonus Ipsy points for each referral.

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 a referral link.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Birchbox April 2014

Birchbox April 2014

Birchbox's theme this month was "Rainy Days", and it took extra long to get to me! I normally have my box before the site updates, so it is usually a surprise.  Not this month! I got my box later than usual, so I knew what to expect.

First Look
So, I'm having camera issues with my iPhone :( Sorry!

My idea card was to "try new things like contouring or curling your hair".
I do both of those already, try again.

Shea Terra Organics Rose Hips Black Soap Deep Pore Facial Cleanser

Shea Terra Organics Rose Hips Black Soap

This soap is supposed to fight blemishes and signs of aging.  You apply it, let it sit for a few minutes, and then rinse it off.  I have used it twice so far, and it makes my skin feel very, very clean.  Squeaky clean! But, not tight or dry.  I find that really unusual; most of the extra-clean-feeling soaps leave me tight and dry, but this one leaves my skin soft and smooth.  I like it!  Plus, black soap is different from the soaps we are all familiar with. It is the ash of various plants (cocoa pods, etc) mixed with Shea butter and left to saponify in the sun. There aren't any unnatural ingredients in this.

Full size is $16 for 4 fl.oz., the 1 fl.oz. sample is worth $4.

Fekkai Technician Color Care Shampoo

Fekkai Color Care Shampoo

I have not tried this.  I probably won't.  Why? Because it is sulfate-based.  I find it highly discouraging that a shampoo designed for colored hair would contain SLS!  Yeah, yeah, it smells great and leaves your hair soft (according to the reviews)... but seriously?  Sulfates? I don't care how lathery my shampoo gets, I don't want to strip all the oils and color!  Fekkai Fail.

$20 for 8 fl.oz., making the 2 fl.oz. sample worth $5.

Color Club Gala's Gem Collection in Gold Struck

Color Club in Gold Struck

This is a very light pink, with a gold undertone.  It's not very gold in and of itself, so I don't know why they named this "gold struck." The finish is pearly and reflective, bordering on metallic.  I love the color and the idea of the finish... but it is a streaky, globby mess and I hate CC's formula to begin with.  This polish is just terrible!  I couldn't stand to wear it for more than a few hours.

Gross and streaky.  Even the top coat didn't help much.

$13 for the set of 4 colors from BB, making 1 polish (all minis, 0.25 fl.oz.) worth $3.25.

theBalm Cosmetics How 'Bout Them Apples? in Pie

How 'Bout Them Apples?

This is a new product from theBalm, and it is cream-based lip and cheek stain.  The full-sized kit comes with six colors, all with apple-themed names, in a palette.  

Oh, hello.

I got the color "pie" which is a bright pink, that blends out to a natural looking flush.  It's not that bad.  It is on the thinner, greasy side of things, but it isn't super drying like a lot of 2-in-1 products.  

Pie on my lips...
...and contouring. See, BB? I'm way ahead of you.

I like the convenience of this, and the little magnetic case it came in, so it will be good to keep in my purse for touch-ups.  Not my favorite product, but it doesn't suck either.

Pie on my cheeks, too!
I'm wearing the Porridge Duck-backed t-shirt from March Golden Tote :)

The full size looks to be $32 for 20g (3 1/3 g per color), and the sample is not labelled with a mass.  Judging from the size of the pans in the full palette, and the size of the sample, I would estimate 1g of product in the version BB sent, making it worth $1.60.

Kind Healthy Grain Bar in Maple Pumpkin Seeds with Sea Salt

Kind bar

Oh, Birchbox.  I would so much rather get a foil-packet-product than receive another granola/power/meal replacement bar.  Kind is a good brand, and I will definitely eat this for breakfast at some point this week, but I don't subscribe to BB to try food. This is something I would normally pick up at the supermarket to try.  What I like about BB is that they send new products from familiar brands, or small versions of expensive products that I normally wouldn't buy.  This is not in line with their usual standard, and I get disappointed every time it happens.

This is worth about $0.79

Birchbox April 2014
All Together

Total Value $14.64.  After reviews, I got another $5 worth of point to spend in the BB shop.  This isn't a very high value overall, but it is still worth more than the $10 I paid for it.  I will eat the Kind bar, and I will use up the face soap.  The theBalm product is ok, and I will keep it around.  That's about it.

This was just a mediocre month for me.  I've had worse, but there wasn't anything amazing in this batch of samples.

If you want to try out Birchbox, please use my link here.  It costs $10 per month and your samples are personalized based on a quiz you fill out when you sign up.  You will get 4-6 deluxe, and sometimes full-sized, items from skincare to hair products to makeup.  Each item you receive, you can review for 10 BB points.  Every 100 points gets you $10 to spend in the online BB shop! You also get 50 points for each referral.

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.