Tuesday, January 21, 2014

January 2014 Blush.Com Mystery Beauty Box - Unboxing and Review

Hello! I hope you're all doing well and having a great start to the New Year! I'm going to jump right on in to the post since I want to get this up and ready to go as quickly as I can (since it's be sitting around for a while and I am slightly embarrassed by my level of procrastination).

This post is going to be all about my January 2014 Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box! The Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box is a box that you can either buy one time (for $34.95) or subscribe to (for $24.95 a month). I prefer subscribing since it saves $10, but if you're cautious and just want to get one box, you'd still be getting a great deal since you're guaranteed over $100 worth of product (also you can wait to see what's in the box so you'll know if you'll even like it or not). Shipping is included, though you may have to pay tax on it (I do, now. I didn't before, but then Target apparently bought blush.com, hairenvy.com, and dermstore.com in October so now I do). You also get two free sample with your order (like you would with any other order from blush.com).

This months box was...interesting. It was a little dull and I was initially kind of "meh" about it, but it's grown on me and, after using some of the products, I'm pretty content with it. I didn't get a "box shot", so I don't have one for my opening picture, so I'll use the info card instead!
This shows the featured product for the month of January 2014, the Le Edge exfoliator!
Every month, Blush.com will reveal one of the items included in that months box as its Featured Item. They post it on the front page of the website (they have a little mosaic thing over it, so if you don't want to see what it is you don't have to, though it's kind of hard to miss) and they make a video talking about it with the person who selected it.The Le Edge was selected as this months Featured Item by a cosmetic surgeon named Dr. Michelle Spring.

The Le Edge is an...interesting kind of body exfoliator. You use it kind of like a razor, except it won't cut your skin or hair. It has a stainless steel blade that you drag across your skin to remove debris and dead skin cells. The product description talks about using it as an exfoliant before shaving or tanning, and I would agree that's the best way to use it. I tried it as an all-over body exfoliant and I didn't think it did a good job compared with my scrub mitt from Sephora, but I do think it really helped exfoliate my legs to prepare them for shaving (kind of gross and maybe a little TMI, but most of us do it).
It's also apparently an "As Seen On Tv" product, but I get the feeling it might be more well-known in different countries since I have never seen it or even heard of it before (also there's a lot of French on the box and it was designed in Australia). It comes in two different colors, pink and blue, but I don't know if people got different colors (the one they showed in the example video was pink and so is mine. I haven't watched any unboxing videos so I can't say for sure). This is a full sized product and retails for $26.

I'm going a little out of order since it made sense to jump in with the Le Edge, but, as I said before, you also get two samples with every blush.com order, including with your Mystery Beauty Box (it's actually in a black fabric bag. The fabric changes every so often so I think they buy remnant fabric from manufactures at deeply discounted prices and make them from that). This months samples kind of set the initial mood of disappointment for me.
So this is what I got for my two samples. I would personally only count this as one sample since they're connected and meant to be used together. I also wasn't too excited about trying something from Cetaphil. Admittedly, I don't think I've ever used anything by them, so it will be a new experience, but it's not a very exciting brand, if you know what I mean. Also the cleanser has a ton of parabens and sodium lauryl sulfate, which is kind of lame.

Going back to the normal order of things, here's the back on the info card, which shows the other items included in January's box.
This card is actually misleading. It looks like you're supposed to get six other products in your box (which brings the total to seven, which I think it average for this box). But no, you're only getting one of the Klorane products. I wish they wouldn't have presented the items in this manner; it only leads to disappointment when you go through the box, think you're missing an item, then read the fine print and realize you weren't supposed to get it in the first place. They should have made the pictures of the Klorane products smaller and bunched them in a way to visually represent that it was one or the other. Or something like that. Once again, this "second disappointment" set the mood for the box (though, like I said, I feel much better about it now that I've had time to sit and think and use the products).

Going in order on the card, I'll start with the Just Kissed Lip Plumper by Jane Iredale. Everyone got the color Tokyo, which is a "strawberry red shade".
Also, it is incredibly tiny. This is like the Anastasia Beverly Hills gloss all over again. Not sure how well the picture shows the scale, but it you watch my video you'll see just how little this is.
That being said, it's actually a pretty color. It's also quite sheer, so it's very wearable. I never go through full-sized lip products anyways (or even deluxe sample sizes for that matter), but I just felt like it should have been a little bigger. I seems even smaller than the 100-point samples you can get from Sephora. It has "time-release peptides" to hydrate, essential oils of lemon and tangerine to exfoliate, and it uses ginger root extract to increase circulation to plump. I don't think it really did anything for my lips plumping wise, but it didn't sting like some plumpers do. A full size is $25 for .08oz. There's no weight/volume measurement on the sample, but I'm assuming it's about a fifth of a full size, so I'd say it was worth $4-$5 (except I would pay $4-$5 for something small, unless it was like a Dior or Chanel lip product).

Next is probably one of the oddest things I've gotten in a subscription box. This is Osmosis Skincare Harmonized Water for Digestive Health.
This is distilled water that has been exposed to specific kinds of vibrations. You take 2ml twice daily with 2oz+ plus of water to help "normalizes bowel function and minimizes bloating to alleviate discomfort and improve health". ...I have heard of water's vibrational memory before (there was a study with snowflakes. There were snowflakes that were complimented and snowflakes that were yelled at and things like that. The snowflakes that were treated kindly were symmetrical and beautiful while the snowflakes treated poorly were ugly and jagged) and I've also heard of homeopathic remedies based on waters "memory"(the water would be exposed to some herb or chemical, then diluted to the point where there were no traces of said additive left, but the water was supposed to "remember" and function the same way as if it had the additive in it. I'm pretty sure it was proven that that was false).

To be honest, I'm not sure how I feel about this product. When I first pulled it out of the box I was confused and not very pleased. Also, the bottle I received was broken; there's a glass dropper inside you use for dosing out the product and mine had arrived snapped. I e-mailed blush.com and they immediately got back to me, letting me know they were sending out a replacement right away. A few days later I got my replacement in the mail; it even came with two samples!
I really appreciate how quickly and efficiently blush.com took care of my issue; it's one of the things that made me feel better about this months box. I know it sounds weird, but knowing that there is a good customer service team behind a subscription service can be very comforting.

I haven't tried this product yet, though I have been having some issues with my stomach, so I might give it a go. I don't think it will hurt me (though you aren't supposed to drink distilled water since it has no minerals in it and will thus eventually kill you. But you have to actually drink it instead of normal water so I don't think 2ml is really going to do any damage), but I don't have a lot of hope that it will help. This is a full sized product at 100ml (so 50 doses, or 25 days if you use it the recommended twice daily) and retails for $30. Which is kind of ridiculous.

Moving on, this next product is one I've been really liking. This is the Goldfaden MD Wake Up Call facial cream.
Sorry about this picture; I've been struggling to take good photos since, with our Christmas tree up (it's not anymore, but it was when I got this box...), I have a very narrow window of natural light to use for photographs. I really need to either invest in a lightbox or make my own...

This is a cream for dry/aging skin that you use at night (on face, neck, and French fancy word for "chest") as a super-hydrating treatment. It has Co-Enzyme Q10, hyaluronic acid, and avocado oil. I've been using this every night instead of my normal serum and moisturizer and I've been waking up with soft, moisturized-feel skin! I really do think this is helping the texture and feel of my skin. I haven't been using this long so I can't speak for any long term benefits, but I am going to be very sad when this runs out. The full size is 1.7oz and retails for $80 (so...out of my price range), making this .16oz sample worth $7.53.

Next is the product you got one or the other of. Both are from the brand Klorane, both are hair products, and both use desert dates. One is a leave-in conditioning cream and one is a hair mask. I got the leave-in cream, and I am very happy I did (I don't like hair masks; I think they leave my hair feeling worse than before using them)!
This is a leave-in conditioner for dry, damaged hair (...I don't think they make leave-in conditioners specifically for healthy, moisturized hair) and it has desert date extract and vitamin E to help hydrate and nourish your hair. I love leave-in conditioners since I find they're really the only way my hair will feel soft and healthy (I have very dry, fine, curly hair). The instructions on the back say you only need 1-2 drops, but I use a bit more. I've been using this almost every day since I got it and I don't find that it leaves my hair greasy or oily feeling if I use more. It's kind of a weird brownish color (compared with the white colored leave-ins that I'm used to) and it has a spicy kind of scent that fades quickly. Overall I'm pretty happy with it; I think it's comparable to my Ouidad leave-in condition, though I do think my Ouidad is a little bit more moisturizing. This is a full sized product and it worth $16.

Finally, I got a tube of Gytone Hydrating Eye Cream.
Not the most exciting product ever, but it's one that I needed, so I was very happy to get it (I'm almost out of my current eye cream and instead of buying a new one, I wanted to wait and see if I got one in a subscription box and I did!). This eye cream has hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and dimethicone. This is apparently a medical grade product and there's even a little "exclusive to physicians" phrase printed on the packaging. Not sure what that's going to mean for its effectiveness, but, like I said, I needed a new eye cream and I'm always happy to try new things. This is a full sized tube and is worth $38.

In total, I got six products in my January 2014 box. Four were full sized, two were deluxe/sample sized. After adding everything together, my total box value is $122.53, so well over the promised $100 value. Overall, I'm pretty content with this box. I got some new, crazy things to try, some products that I will likely use daily, and then the itty bittiest little lipstick sample. For $24.95, I could definitely do worse!

Thanks for reading! <3

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