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The 'B' List. A look at the beautiful things in life. This blog is devoted to that list. Join me on the journey, why don't you?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Julep St. Patrick's Mystery Box

I am late to the St. Paddy's Day party. My Julep mystery box FINALLY arrived so now I'll just have to get in the spirit of it all again.

The chocolate coins
The surprise!
I'll go through each of the items...

Nail file
First, Julep sent a glass nail file. These are my favorite - I only have one so another is welcome (probably will take it on the go or leave it at my desk).

Then, the hand treatments...

Hand Cream
I received a 30 ml size Glow on Age Defying Hand Brightener - it has a nice, fresh smell and silky feel.

The cream
It goes hand in hand (pardon the pun) with Julep's Facial for Hands Glycolic Hand Scrub, which I got a 30 ml sample as well.

The scrub

As you can see on my hand, it has little exfoliation beads. It came out quite watery at first, so I had to shake it up but it still has a watery consistency.

Next up are the polishes....

Base Coat
I received Julep's basecoat (I already had their topcoat from the intro box so I'm glad I got the basecoat instead).

L to R: Emma, Sofia, Glenn
The colours I got were Emma (a shimmery sheer oyster pink); Sofia (a grass green glitter) and Glenn (a dramatic red). I swatched them so you can take a look.

From L to R: Emma; Emma with Luxe and Lush (China Glaze Hunger Games Collection); Sofia; Sofia with Leah as a basecoat; Glenn.

Emma (on pinky); Emma with Luxe and Lush overlay (on ring finger)
Another angle
As soon as I put on Emma, it was sheer enough that I thought it would look really good with Luxe and Lush. And I like it even better when that's used as a topcoat!

Sofia (on middle finger); Leah with Sofia overlay (on pointer finger).
Another angle
I found Sofia on its own to be too sheer, almost a watery green. But when swatched over Leah, it adds a bit of sparkle and shine. (Sorry the edges of this swatch aren't so neat!)

Another angle
Glenn is just a really lush, highly pigmented red that looks great on its own.

Overall, this mystery box was certainly good value for the money; I paid only $20 for $80 worth of product. And, there were no dupes; nothing I received I already owned so all the items from Julep were new to me. However, I don't know if I would have chosen these specific polish colours as they are not colours I tend to pick out on my own. I think I like getting surprises a bit better in my beauty boxes, whereas with Julep I like to know what's coming each month, as I am more picky with polish than with beauty products. But this mystery box was still fun to at least try out.

Did you get a Julep St. Patrick's Day mystery box? What did you get? What did you think of it?

If you would like to join me on my beauty box journey, you can sign up for Julep Maven here. First box promo is 1 penny; just type in any of the following codes at checkout: PENNY, COLOR2012, SHAREONMARCH.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

China Glaze Hunger Games Polish

So far I've ordered 3 polishes from the 12-polish China Glaze Hunger Games polish collection. If these 3 are any indication of the rest of the line, it's going to sell out very quickly!

From left to right: Dress Me Up, Electrify, Luxe and Lush

I swatched each and they turned out beautifully - Dress Me Up is sort of a dusky rose cream and it applies wonderfully; I only used one coat in the swatch and it gave full opaque coverage. Electrify is a gorgeous gold and red glitter; only two coats to achieve full coverage over the nail bed. And Luxe and Lush is an amazing flaky; silvery, prismatic slivers in a clear base; it took three coats to get it evenly over my nail. (Picture update below!)

Left to right: Dress Me Up, Electrify, Luxe and Lush

Below are a few clearer images that I was able to take today.

Pretty cool, no? Regardless if you've never heard of the books or are a huge fan, you'll probably love at least a few colours in this collection. To see the full collection swatched in incredibly amazing detail (and a killer tribute design to the movie) check out ommorphia beauty bar's post.

Do you have any of the China Glaze Hunger Games collection? Which one(s)? What do you think?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Julep Jodie polish with Gosh Matt Effect Top Coat

I tried out the Jodie polish that came in my Julep Maven March box.

The polish (on it's own)

It's a lovely deep rose with shimmer. Great on it's own, but the perfect colour for trying out my new GOSH Matt Effect Top Coat.

With Matt Effect applied

A couple of different angles

I used two coats of Jodie and afterwards put one coat of GOSH Matt Effects on. I love how it has a muted, metallic look after the top coat is applied. I couldn't put on regular top coat afterwards, as that would only make it shiny again.

This mani lasted me 5 days, which is great; I think the lasting power of Julep polishes directly relates to the top coat you use - I find Julep's quick dry top coat only to be good at the quick dry part, not the long-lasting part - so use your favorite top coat brand instead and you should be good to go.

What do you think of the new matte look for nails? Have you tried it out?

If you want to join me on my beauty box journey, you can sign up to be a Julep Maven here. First box is a penny, just use any of the following codes at checkout: COLOR2012, SHAREONMARCH or PENNY.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

March Loose Button Luxe Box review

It's time for Loose Button's March Luxe Box! I actually got the package before I got the tracking number, so that was a surprise.

The shipping container
Black box this time
The Luxe Box
Opening it...
I do love the personalization
Inside my box
The product card (I'll copy when I go through each item)
The anniversary 'seed' card
For the life of me, I couldn't get the seed card to photograph clearly (I think it is because of the bumps and ridges that it's printed on) so I will copy the text here.

"It's our one year anniversary! It was only a year ago when we shipped out a Luxe Box to our first member in Toronto! Time sure does fly by, and now Luxe Boxes arrive in the hands of beauty enthusiasts across the country every month. We have grown incredibly fast and we couldn't have done it without you. As a token of our appreciation, we would like to present you with a special gift. Providing an exceptional service starts with building a relationship that is nurtured over time. Just like how you've helped us to grow, Loose Button would like to invite you to nurture this plant to beautify your home. The card you are holding contains seeds of a plant which you can grow in your own home. Vist our blog at http://blog.loosebutton.com to learn more about this special seeded card and share your progress with us on Facebook and Twitter! We hope you enjoy our gift! Thank you once again for being a member. The Loose Button Team".

This card is pretty neat - I haven't seen anything like it before. However, I hope I can actually get it to work. I am the complete opposite of a green thumb and think I have killed most plants I've aquired. Not intentionally, of course, I just suck at it. I will try it out, but no promises that it will grow!

Let's get to the products...

The first things I noticed were the fragances -

For him and her
The cards explain the My Scent Program and why I got a men's fragrance in my box.

My Scent: "We created MyScent to celebrate your uniqueness as an individual, giving you the ability to try out a larger selection of fragrances at once to see which one matches your style the best. In this month's one-of-a-kind kit, our beauty editors have curated their favorite scents from the list of nominees for the Cosmetics Magazine's Consumers Choice Fragrance of the Year, giving you the opportunity to pick your favorite scent. Not only that, but you can also have your voice heard by voting for your top fragrance of the year!" (bit.ly/CCFYVote is the link to cast votes).

I received CK One Shock for Her, Vera Wang Lovestruck and Marc Jacob Oh, Lola. I am actually quite happy with all of these; I was super excited to receive a sample of CK Shock as everyone who got it in last month's box as a rollerball was raving about it. Each sample is 1.2 ml; full size of CK (50ml) is $45; full size of Vera (50ml) is $79; full size of Marc (50ml) is $79.

However, I also saw this mammoth bottle of CK Shock for Him.

Geez that's a big sample
Loose Button sent along a 15 ml spray bottle sample along with a card that reads:

"We wanted to give you an exclusive opportunity this month to share the Luxe Box love with someone special. Spread the joy of discovering new products and brands by sharing your bonus ck one shock for him deluxe sample with an important guy in your life. Whether it's someone in your family, one of your colleagues or your significant other, this is grear chance to share the Luxe Box experience with someone new!"

Well, my husband will be happy as now he has a little gift. But I was really hoping that the Shock for Her would be this size instead! It's my box, after all :)

Moving on, we come to Kerastase Masque Age Recharge...

The masque

From the card: "Fine, brittle hair is repaired, transformed and protected. Each strand is smoother, shinier and more substantial. Towel-dry hair after wash and apply a quarter-sized amount onto hair in sections. Wrap in hot towel. Leave on for 5 minutes. Emulsify with warm water; then rinse with cold water."

The sample in the box is 30 ml and a full size 200 ml is $60. I like using hair masks on occasion, and I don't currently have any, so I will give it a try. The only thing I don't like about hair masks in general is how gucky the towel gets after you take your hair out :( Cling film might solve this but getting that to stay is messy as well.

Next we have DDF Advanced Firming Cream.

The cream
The card reads: "Advanced formula contains the breakthrough Tumeric Complex, with glycerin, zinc and copper, that hydrates to firm and tighten, provides antioxidant protection for the moisture barrier, and promotes rapid surface cell turnover to help reverse the appearance of again for younger looking skin".

In the box I received a 14 g sample; full size is 48 g for $140. Like I've said in previous posts, I love trying out new face and body lotions, and I don't really care if it is anti-aging or not, just that it moisurizes well and isn't too smelly or greasy. I will give this a go and see. The full size is pricey though.

Last is the item I reserved from "First in Line" - the Cargo Glitter Top Coat.

The liner
The card states: "Let your eyes steal the spotlight! The ultimate transformer, CARGO's glitter top coat takes your daytime eye makeup straight into the evening with one sweep of the brush. Infused with coloured iridescent glitter in a transparent base, it can be worn alone or on top of any waterproof eyeliner or eye shadow. The super long-wear formula is both waterproof and smudge-proof, and the magic tip applicator allows for perfect results!"

It is 2.8 ml; which I believe is full size ($18 value). I was intrigued by this concept and excited to receive this item. Sometimes I do makeup for the daytime but can't change it when I am going out that evening. If I put this in my purse, it would add a little something for my nighttime makeup look.

The applicator
In the picture above you can see how the applicator is a liner tip; I actually have the product on my hand running down in a thin line (you can see a bit of the sparkles) but the following pictures show it much better.

In all three pictures, on the left is Cargo's black eyeliner, untouched. On the right is the glitter top coat. In the middle is the glitter top coat over the black liner. As you can see, depending on angle and light there is either a bit of glitter, or a flash. I think it looks quite fun, actually!

Overall, I like my box this month, but I think I liked last month's better. I really like the glitter top coat and the fragrances, but am sort of bummed that my husband will be getting the biggest sample this month, and he doesn't even subscribe! Also, some other bloggers got some neat stuff I would have LOVED to try - this blogger received an OPI top coat and this blogger got a Katy Perry Purr perfume sample and a face cream that is for dry skin, organic and great for travel. *Sigh* I can't have everything, I know.

What did you receive in your Luxe Box? What do you think of this month overall?

If you'd like to join me on my beauty box journey, you can sign up for Luxe Box here. Currently there is a waitlist so put your name on if you want to be added. $12/month + taxes.