Tuesday, 29 November 2011

November Monthly Subscription Boxes Comparison

Here are the criterias that I judged the boxes by with equal weighing. And the winner is...*drumroll*...Luxebox!!! With Glymmbox and Topbox almost tying at second place. I do prefer Topbox to Glymmbox and the scores will reflect that in December's box comparison if Topbox doesn't mess up their shipping again.

Luxurity - Based on the luxe factor of products received:  Luxebox scored a very high score this month because of the Benefit b.right products that I received this month.  I was very delighted to receive the Moisture Prep Toner and the Total Moisture Facial Cream together and I thought that it was very thoughtful of luxebox to put the two products from the same line together for me to try.  Topbox scored second because I received the Deborah Lippman nail polish which is more luxe than the Essie nail polish that I received from Luxebox.  Glymm comes in last in the luxurity score because most of the products that were received this month were drugstore products.  Some might argue that Lise Watier should be considered a luxury item since it is on the pricier side at Shopper Drug Mart, but hey, does Sephora carry Lise Watier?  If Sephora doesn't carry it, then it ain't considered luxurious.

Quantity: Samples Received - Based on the number of samples received: Luxebox comes in first place in this category because I received four samples, whereas, I received three samples from Glymmbox and two samples from Topbox

Quantity: Full Size Products Received - Based on the number of full size products received:  I received two full sized products in all three boxes.  The reason why Luxebox and Topbox tied at first place was due to preference to the full size products.  While I loved the Deborah Lippman nail polish that I received from Topbox, I actually prefer the ELF eyeshadow that I received from Luxebox compared to the Cake Velveteen Hand Crème that I received from Topbox.  Glymm came in last because the RGB red nail polish is such a boring red and the Annabelle eyeliner is a drugstore product.

Range of products - Based on the different products that was received: Glymm comes in first place in this category because it hits the most categories in one box (Nail, Eye Makeup, Skincare, and Hair).  Topbox comes in as a close second because it also hits four categories (Nail, Lip Makeup, Skincare, Hand), but I prefer trying out the shampoo and conditioner from Rahua than the hand crème from Cake.  Luxebox comes in last place because it hits less categories than the other boxes (Nail, Eye Makeup, Skincare)

Timeliness - Based on when box was received:  Glymm comes in first place in this category because it was the first box to arrive in my mail despite the box being sent out from Montreal.  It comes almost a week ahead from Luxebox.  The Luxebox is sent out in the middle of the month and I receive mine almost immediately since I live in the same city as head office of Loose Button.  I receive topbox at the end of the month due to a shipping issue between Topbox and Canada Post.  I would have given topbox a higher score if they had kept their promise of putting in a 5th product in my topbox since I had received my topbox late.  But because the box was not rerouted through Topbox, they never got the chance to put a 5th product in my topbox.  It comes in last because the box was almost three weeks late from Glymmbox and I never got the extra product that they promised me I will get. Albeit, one of the girls from Topbox did say that she made a note in the system and will try to get an extra product in December's Topbox.

Packaging - Based on the overall appearance of the box: Luxebox comes in first place with the sleek black box that encases the products and a personalized sticker on the wrapping paper.  Glymm and Topbox tie in second place since neither fare much better than the other.  Glymm's box is a very sturdy box made out of hard cardboard in Cotton Candy Pink.  I like that the box is very durable, but I don't like the Cotton Candy Pink.  Topbox is a tube with a design on the outside.  It is not apparent what it is unless you open it and you see the Topbox pamphlet inside.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Benefit's B. Right! Moisture Prep Toning Lotion and Total Moisture Facial Cream

I received the sample of Benefit's B. Right Moisture Prep Toning Lotion and Total Moisture Facial Cream in my November Luxe Box. I will now do a review of these two products and how they work together.

What it claims to do:
From Benefit's website, it states that the b.right! line cleanses, moisturize and specialize for a radiantly refreshed, lit from within look.

b.right! Moisture Prep Toning Lotion ($29 for 177.4ml):
Smoothing lotion to prep skin for moisturizer

b.right! Total Moisture Facial Cream ($38 for 42.8g):
Hydra-concentrated facial cream with tri-radiance complex
*tri-radiance complex: “Benefit’s exclusive tri-radiance complex includes several vegetable-based sugar and glycol derivatives plus a perfectly selected set of different sizes of hyaluronic acid, to boosts hydration in the skin as much as 73 percent within two hours after application (measured in triple performing facial emulsion SPF 15 PA++), an incredible result in an SPF 15 PA++ emulsion!” from Benefit's website Eric Perrier, Executive Vice President R & D at LVMH Parfums et Cosmetiques in Paris.

My thoughts:

b.right! Moisture Prep Toning Lotion
My first thought when I put on the Moisture Prep Toning Lotion was how nice it smelled. It is definitely a scented product, so, for those who are sensitive to scented products, this will not be the product for you. However, it is not a heavily scented product; it has a very light fresh scent to it, which I really like.
The texture of the Moisture Prep Toning Lotion is a mix between a toner and a gel.

b.right! Total Moisture Facial Cream
I have used the Total Moisture Facial Cream a couple of times in the morning and a couple of times at night. I would say that the cream does provide a lot of moisture to the face and it prevents my skin from flaking due to dry weather conditions and heating from central air.
The cream does feel a bit heavy and I think would not recommend this for a person with oily skin as Benefit states (Benefit recommends the Triple Performing Facial Emulsion for normal to combination skin type)
When I put it on in the morning, I do find that it creates a heavy layer between my foundation and my skin. I have to put a primer on top of the product or my foundation will be slipping and sliding on my face within two hours. It is a bit annoying to have to go through an extra step of putting primer on, but for those days when the wind whips around and sucks the water out of your skin, this will be the cream to protect your face.
When I put this on at night, I don't feel that my skin looks as oily as I think the product will make it, but when I wet my face, I feel the oilyness of the moisturizer and it makes me wonder if my skin had absorbed the product at all, or whether it just sits on my skin as a protective layer.

All in all, I love the moisture prep toning lotion and I think it works well with the total moisture facial cream, but I would not use the total moisture facial cream on a daily basis due to the heaviness of the cream.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Top 10 Christmas Gifts to Beautinistas

With Christmas just around the corner, I'm sharing a list of great products in different price ranges for the beautinistas in your life. Going from everywhere from $2 to $200, I'm sure that you will find the perfect gift that will suit your budget.

1. Lush- Lush Legend - $200
This is a gift box with a good selection of Lush's best products. This gift box contains products that your loved one will enjoy from head to toe. From shampoo and conditioner, to moisturizing their skin with the body butter after a good soak with the bath bombs; the receiver of the gift will thank you for your generous gift. And what's more? Lush ripped a page of the marketing handbook from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; there are golden tickets to be found in any gift box that you purchase. Gifts range from gift cards to a tour of the Lush factory in Vancouver.

2. Sephora/skinstore.com - Clarisonic Mia - $149
The Clarisonic Mia has been out for more than a year now, and many makeup gurus around the world cannot live without their Mia. I've had the Mia now for 2 months and my skin has gotten a lot softer with the Mia. For those of you who don't know what the Mia is, it's like a supersonic toothbrush for your face that gently cleans pores. Word of advice, if you are going to buy the Mia, I would suggest that you also get the delicate brush heads. I find that the normal brush head to be too coarse for my sensitive skin.

3. Philosophy - The Care Package - $110
The care package is a holiday package that comes out during the holidays. It contains six of their most popular products, including Purity Made Simple, Microdelivery Peel Gel and Hope In A Jar. This is a great line that all women should try. The line is a very gentle on the skin and makes your skin nice and smooth.

4. Urban Decay - Naked Palette - $52
The Naked Palette is for women who likes a more neutral eye. The colours are great and the palette is definitely travel friendly. The Naked Palette has been out since 2010 Summer and it is definitely not a new product. But I noticed that Sephora started having the Naked Palette in stock at the stores again. Through out the summer, I never saw the Naked Palette at stores until recently. If the special person in your life was eyeing the palette and was waiting for Sephora to stock up on it and has given up, now is the time to show that you care and surprise her with this great palette.

5. Sephora - Deluxe Sampler for Her - $50
When you don't know what to buy for her, buy her the deluxe fragrance sampler. The kit contains 12 samples of different fragrances for her to try, after trying the fragrances, she can bring the voucher back to Sephora to redeem a fragrance of her choice.

6. Urban Decay - 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Travel Size Set of Five - $32
Urban Decay released their 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil for a while now, and everyone agrees that this eye pencil is absolutely amazing; the colour pigmentation is great, it doesn't smudge at all, and the pencil just glides on when you put it on, no tugging and pulling. A normal sized eye pencil is 0.04oz at $18 each. Each set comes with five different colours, 0.03oz each, and the set costs $32. You get 5 different colours for the price of 2. There are two sets to choose from.
This is how the Naked set looks like:

This is how the Electric set looks like:

This is how the pencils look like swatted (Top - Electric, Bottom - Naked):

7. Ebay - Skinfood - Black Sugar Scrub Foam - $13
I love the black sugar scrub foam from Skinfood. As you rub the scrub in, you can feel the scrub melt in your hands. When you rinse the scrub off, you are left with nice clear skin that feels like a baby's bottom.

8. Essie - Nail Polish - Lady Like - $10
I saw this nail polish everywhere a couple of months ago and all the girls had this nail polish on. This is a very nice pink with a bit of lavender in it.

9. ELF - Glossy Gloss - Sweet Salmon - $3
ELF's glossy gloss is a gloss that delivers shine without glitter at $3. The gloss is very pigmented and the gloss is not sticky at all. There is a wide range of colours that will suit many skin tones.

10. ELF - Nail Polish - Champagne - $2
ELF's nail polish is chip resistant at $2 and there is a great variety of colour. When she puts on the nail polish, other people would not even know that it only costs $2. The packaging also looks very sleek, she wouldn't even know that it costs $2.

November Luxebox

My November Luxebox finally came in the mail. I'm so excited to share what I got this month with you!

Here is what I received this month:

Benefit Cosmetics - B. Right! Total Moisture Facial Cream
ELF - Essential Brightening Eye Colour in Day 2 Night
Benefit Cosmetics - B. Right! Moisture Prep Toning Lotion
Olay Regenerist - Wrinkle Revolution Complex
Essie - Nail Polish in Carry On
Teaopia - Cactus Fig Tea with paper filter

This is how the box looks like

This is how the box looks like when you open the box

I love how the box addresses me personally by name!

Here is a picture of all the goodies that I got this month <3

Close-Up Picture of Essie's Carry On

Close-Up Picture of Elf's Day 2 Night

Swatch of Elf's Day 2 Night. I was so excited about the eyeshadow because the colours look so gorgeous in the packaging, but the colour payoff for this palette sucks! I can barely see the colours when swatched. I guess it works if you're going for a subtle look.

Close-Up Picture of Benefit's Moisture Prep Toner

Close-Up Picture of Benefit's Facial Cream

I am disappointed in the ELF eyeshadow that I received in this month's box. However, I do not blame this on Luxe Box, I blame this on ELF. I have tried many ELF products and I do enjoy most of them. I also think that it is great that Luxe Box introduced the Canadian market to ELF's essentials line. Most Canadians know of ELF's studio line through Winners and their essential beauty books from Zellers, but most Canadians do not know that ELF sells their eyeshadow quad for $1. I think that Luxe Box completed their mission of introducing their customers to makeup products that they would otherwise would not try this month (who would want to try eyeshadow that cost $1?) That being said, the people who want to buy more ELF eyeshadow quads would have to make their way to the states or buy them online.

All in all, I love this month's Luxe Box. I can't believe that I got this many products for only $10! I can't wait to try Benefit's B Right Toner and Moisturizing Cream, I hope that it is strong enough for Canadian weather. I am also very happy to receive the Essie nail polish in Carry On. I have seen this colour in advertisement and have seen the nail polish on youtube, and I was gonna go out and buy it! (It's almost as if Luxe Box read my mind).

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

November Glymm Box

I am so excited to see that my Glymm Box finally arrived in my mail today. I kinda spoiled the surprise for myself because I googled what other people have received. But it's still nice to have the products in your hand and there is still an element of surprise in terms of the colours that you will receive.

What I received this month:
Lise Watier - Flash Lift Radiance Vial
Rahua - Luxury Shampoo & Conditioner
Orlane Paris - Light Smoothing Cream
RGB - Designer Nail Lacquer
Annabelle - Smudge Paint
Jelly beans - coffee and raspberry flavour

This is how the box looks like

Close-Up photos of the beauty products
I received the nail polish in Red, the colour is a classic red
The colour that I received is Muddy

I am a little put off by the name and I think someone from Annabelle should lose their job for naming this beautiful bronze colour muddy. The colour is a metallic bronze that has gold micro glitter in it when swatched. It's a very pretty colour, and it dries very quickly and will not smudge no matter how hard you rub at the colour. The brush that comes off the cap is not the best brush in the world; I still prefer my $3 Elf Small Angled Brush. I would get frustrated very quickly if I had to take the brush apart and put it back together on a daily basis, but this would be a good product to take if you are a traveller looking to travel light.

I hope that my Luxe Box comes soon. I still have not received my email confirmation from Canada Post yet, but I read on Luxe Box's twitter that they have started sending out the boxes yesterday and will be done by Thursday. Hopefully, I get the box in a couple of days, which should be the case, since I live in Toronto. Also waiting for Top Box to come in as well, there was a shipping mishap but Top Box promised to make it right by putting an extra beauty product in the box as compensation which I must applaud their customer service for (in fact, I thought that I was lucky that I was one of the ones that had a shipping mishap :P) Will report back on both Luxe Box and Top Box when I get it, and will do a review on all three beauty subscription boxes to see which one I like the most.