Tag Archives: birchbox

Ooh La, Rue La!

26 Jun

Ah the subscription model of shopping. I am a sucker, and I LOOOOVE getting packages. Plus it’s a great way to try out new products without having to invest in full sizes.

So far, I am a member both of  BeautyBar Sample Society and Birchbox. And then, cause you know, I like to share the wealth, I also signed up for BarkBox. FOR MY DOG.

sample society

If you decide to sign up for BeautyBar Sample Society after seeing this, please consider using my referral code – kate78 – so I can get credit!

birchboxbarkbox

Then my friend Cait mentioned Glossybox to me. I have been meaning to look into it but not had a chance yet.

WELL.

Today, Rue La La is offering a DEAL on Glossybox – $40 for a $100 membership. WHAT! So yeah. I signed up. And maybe, if you’re anything like me, you should too.

rue la la glossybox

If you’re a member of a similar program, please share the details and your referral code below, or tweet it to me @kate78, #lipglosslife!

Naked Princess/theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer/October’s Birchbox

19 Nov

I kinda love Birchbox. And by that I mean I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with them. I am always excited to get my surprise box of samples in the mail. I am always excited to open it. But I am only sometimes excited by the samples inside. I have to stay faithful to them, because they did introduce me to my favorite hair product ever, Orofluido. And I have NEVER been faithful to a hair product as long as I have to Orofluido. It’s truly the best. But sometimes their boxes are just meh. However, they can’t have a home run every month, I guess, so I try to be patient.

Well last month’s box was not just a home run, but a straight up grand slam. TWO products I love AND a product so ridiculous that it’s blog worthy. How much more can a girl ask for?!?

First the good – theBalm cosmetics Mary-Lou Manizer. Super cute “luminizer” you’re meant to be able to use all over your face. I have mentioned before that I am not a fan of anything that makes my face look shiny – it’s not a good look on me. Or, I think, on most women who are not either at a photo shoot or on a runway. But that’s just personal opinion, so take it with a grain of salt. That said, I DID use it as an eyeshadow and it is DARLING! A lovely, shiny gold color, just enough to be noticeable without being overbearing or too fancy. A perfect every day shadow. My main issue with this one is the cartoon woman on the front of the packaging, who looks just like this girl I used to know and hate. I might scribble her face out or something to make it easier for me to use it. Otherwise, a great product.

Next, the even better – Naked Princess Naked Shine Lip Gloss. Okay, again, main issue is very superficial – the name. “Naked Princess?” Are you effing serious? What…. I don’t… Okay moving on. The color I received was called Barely Nude and it is SO fabulous! It really is very nude, but shiny shiny, soft, not sticky, and smells like white chocolate! I can’t say enough good things about this gloss. If you’re looking for a sweet, pretty, simple, every day gloss, you found it. I went on Amazon and bought several more in different colors and I don’t regret a one. I am, however, embarrassed to tell people the name. Naked Princess… Jesus.

And finally, the most hilarious – tili Bags Small. Ahhahahaha, ahhhhahahahahaha, hahahaha, haha, ha – you’re kidding, right? Because I see you calling it a “Lifestyle extra” and a “stylish reusable bag” but it’s actually a crappy Ziploc, not even as heavyweight as the Hefty Zip bags I use, and it’s kinda ugly, and you’re trying to sell me 12 of them for $8.50, when I can get 22 heavier weight and more see-through Hefty quart-size bags for $2.68. (Let me break that down for you – that’s 12¢ for a Hefty bag, or 71¢ for a “tili” fashion bag. Made of plastic. Exactly like the Hefty bag. But not as heavyweight.) I just couldn’t let this one go, Birchbox. Super silly. Nice try, though.

Anyhow, all that said, last month was a real coup for the Birchbox! Two awesome items, one HEElarious item, and one happy shopper. Well done!

 

Borghese Bagno Di Vita Body Soak

19 Jul

 

First let me tell you I traditionally HATE baths, for multiple reasons. One, I don’t like how fast the water cools down. Two, I don’t like the idea of sitting in a stew of my own dirt. And three, and this is the most important reason and may actually even be the parent reason that the other reasons just branch off of, I am bigger than normal bathtubs and it’s both uncomfortable and disheartening for me to try to sit in one. Enter our new, custom-designed bathroom WITH Victorian-style slipper tub, and cue the Hallelujah chorus. FINALLY a bathtub that I feel normal in. Between the fact that I have a gorgeous bathtub that fits my gorgeous body, and the fact that I am now subjected to all sorts of pregnancy aches and pains, I have actually been on the lookout for bath products that a) don’t contain sulfates, and b) don’t make me feel all dry. Enter Borghese Bagno Di Vita Body Soak.

I got two little packets of Borghese Bagno Di Vita Body Soak (in French underneath that says Oil for the Bath, which is kind of a lie, because it’s not an oil at all but a powder/salt, but I digress) in my Birchbox last month. I love that they sent me two packets because sometimes it’s hard to tell if you really like something after only one shot. This is a direct quote from their packaging – you can’t make this stuff up:

Receive the luxurious skin treatment of hydrotherapy – a therapeutic soak in mineral waters – in the comfort of your own home. Mineral infused crystals transform your bath into an oasis of calm, blue waters while the uplifting scent of botanical oils soothes tense, tired muscles.

Okay, I guess SOMEBODY made that stuff up, but still. An oasis? Really?

In spite of the silly description, I have to say, I fully endorse this product! I dumped the packet into my bath and it turned it a pretty blue color. No bubbles, but that’s usually what sulfates do, so that was okay. Additionally, even though it’s a powder, it really did feel like an oil! I left the bath feeling soft, silky, and refreshed – NOT like I’d just been soaking in my own filth for half an hour. The smell is pleasant, herbal, and spa-y, and I actually didn’t even need to use the second packet to know I wanted more – I just went ahead and bought some. I used it again a couple nights ago with an equally pleasant result.

Nicely done, Borghese! Now work on that copy.

 

 

Birchbox

26 Jun

What do I love as much as product? Getting things in the mail. So when I heard about Birchbox, a subscription service where for $10 a month you get a box of product samples shipped to you, I yelled, “ALL IN!” I did not research. I did not waffle. I did not ask around. I SIGNED THE HECK UP.

I have been a Birchbox member now for six months. Some months have been unimpressive. Some months have been pretty cool. One month I even got a free, special bonus box (in addition to my regular monthly box), full of Vichy products. Quelle belle surprise! Until this month, only one product had hooked me, and it’s actually one I have since blogged about – Orofluido’s hair oil. I got a nice little tester of it that lasted me for a good week, really enjoyed it, and ended up buying stock in the company. Okay, not really, but I should, because I have bought it for myself twice since and recommended it both personally and in my blog. I also got another product I blogged about, the Miracle Skin Transformer, which I did REALLY like but found to be a little too expensive for the size you get.

Anyhow, I have gotten some other great stuff, but nothing to write home about, until June’s box. June’s box has not just an eyeliner, not just a lip stain, not just a Borghese bath soak… BUT ALL THREE! And some other crap too! Not just one packet of the Borghese bath soak, either, but TWO packets of it, so you can really decide if you like it before ordering.

Damn, Birchbox. You got me. I am hooked. And I can now endorse you fully, far and wide. If you can cut out two Starbucks lattes a month, you can afford a Birchbox subscription. And if you love product even half as much as I do, you can’t really afford not to.

Sarah McNamara Miracle Skin Transformer Body SPF 20

19 May

Those of you who know me know I am not a small person. I never have been. I was born weighing in at over 10 pounds, and I’m now 6′ tall with Amazonian hips and bountiful bosoms. I’m not fat, per se, but I am certainly “womanly,” “voluptuous,” and “curvy,” and even when I am as thin as I can get without looking sick, I’m not blowing over in a strong wind.

I recently read an article about shoes (another love of mine) and how plus size women love shoes because shoes don’t discriminate. It doesn’t matter if you’re 5’10” and 110 pounds or 5’2″ and 180, if you’re a size 8, you’re a size 8, and you can walk into any department store or shoe store in the world, pick out a pair in your size, and know they’re going to look fabulous. Those of us who wear larger-sized clothes (again, even at my thinnest, I am squeezing if I wear a 12) will never know the pleasure of buying off the rack. I don’t even bother with vintage clothing stores, much as I love the styles of the 40s and 50s, because they NEVER have anything in my size. To make matters worse, I am ALSO screwed in the shoe department – at a size 11, sometimes 11.5, I can’t usually buy off the rack for shoes, either. 9 times out of 1o – nay, 99 times out of 100, I will fall in love with a pair of shoes only to find out the largest they come in is a 10. And usually they don’t even have those in stock. And vintage shoes? Pahahahaha, right. Apparently women in those days maxed out at an 8, or they wore the boxes.

Now I have managed to amass quite the shoe collection in spite of (or maybe because of?) this disadvantage. I have found brands – Naturalizer, Aerosoles, Nine West – that make a large variety of shoes in my size. And I buy them with gusto and the satisfaction that I DESERVE these shoes because I am not like other women – I have to take them when and where I can find them! Still, it’s not always easy, and I can’t usually see a pair of shoes on a friend and ask where she got them, feeling I could go pick myself up a pair. Because they more than likely don’t even make them in my size.

What does that leave me with? PRODUCT. Product really and truly does not discriminate. One size blush fits all. A tube of mascara, used normally, lasts every woman the same amount of time. Lipgloss is lipgloss is lipgloss. You can have fat lips or thin lips and that lipgloss looks the same.

Okay okay okay. So getting to the point, which I am sure by now you thought I’d never do. I present you with Sarah McNamara Miracle Skin Transformer Body SPF 20 in Glow (ain’t that a mouthful).

I love me some lotion, and I moisturize every day after showering. I got a generous sample size of this with my May Birchbox, and was stoked to try it. It’s a tinted, slightly sparkly moisturizer WITH SPF – what a great idea. So basically, it evens your body skin tone, protects from the sun, and gives you a nice, summery sheen. Love it! The sample was 0.5 fl. oz., and it took the entire thing to cover my body. It didn’t seem to come off on my clothes, gave me a really nice glow, and seemed to moisturize well. You may consider this a plus or a minus, depending on your proclivities, but it hasn’t much of a smell. I personally prefer lotions with a yummy, gourmet smell, but I don’t really like lotions that are too perfumey, so having no smell at all is really probably okay.

I liked this moisturizer/bronzer/suntan lotion SO much that I promptly bought a full-size bottle of it from Amazon. If you click above, you will note that it does not clearly say the size of the bottle, but since the sample size was half an ounce, I figured the full size would be quite large, especially for $34. I received the lotion yesterday and was surprised and more than a little disappointed to discover the full-sized product is – get ready – 3.38 oz. REALLY? I used half an ounce in ONE application! Please tell me if I am being crazy here, but that means there aren’t even seven full uses in this full-sized bottle! Not even a week’s worth of applications for THIRTY-FOUR DOLLARS? I mean, okay, yes, I am impressed by this lotion – its multi-functionality is unique and awesome. But $10 and ounce??? IS IT MADE OF LIQUID GOLD????

This brings me around to my opening. If you are short and thin, hey, this may last you a month. But if you’re 6′ tall and of ample body, it may be a waste of money. I’m so disappointed – even the product sphere has found a way to make me feel awkwardly large. Thanks, Sarah McNamara. Thanks a lot. :/

Orofluido Beauty Elixir

12 Mar

Even my puppy wants me to blog today – she’s taking a nap and not getting into trouble for once!

Love it!

Got a sample of Orofluido Beauty Elixir with my Birchbox monthly subscription a few months ago. Originally I would have said I’d NEVER switch away from Alterna’s hair smoother again, and I stand by my review of it as one of the most fantastic hair smoothers I have ever come across. Orofluido, however, is tied for first! Not only does it work just as well – light, soft, detangles and shines without weighing down – but it also smells like a delicious vanilla cookie! If you have been reading my blog entries, you know I cannot resist a beauty product that smells edible. I’d like to mix this stuff with some vodka and make a delicious cocktail. I won’t. But I’d like to.

My only gripe is the glass bottle. Although it’s very pretty and the heft feels good in my hand, I have a glass tile floor in my bathroom and it has been the end of many a glass-bottled beauty product due to my butter finger nature.

Nonetheless – RECOMMEND! And the set you can get through Amazon (linked above) even comes with three little tiny bottles, perfect to pack for a weekend away.

Gel manicures: Cause for concern?

9 Mar

A blog from our friends over at Birchbox:

Could Your Gel Manicure Give You Skin Cancer?