Saturday, March 8, 2014

February 2014 Blush Mystery Beauty Box - Unboxing and Review!

Hello! We're getting so close to spring now I can almost taste it! Things are warming up and it looks like we've finally reached the tipping point where it stops being winter (this can get muddled; I think last year we had snow in April). The only downside to spring is that, with warmth, comes the melting of the ridiculous amounts of snow we have piled everywhere (seriously, it's kind of scary in some places). It sounds like it's going to be a very wet spring, which is terribly annoying, but honestly, anything is better than more bitter cold and snow.

I'm falling behind again on getting these posts up, but this time I have the excuse that I had to go on a business trip to Jersey and that work has been kind of crazy. With the warmer temps, people are finally able to leave their houses so we've had an influx of things to do. My biggest goal is to get these posts up before I get the box for the next month; the March 2014 Blush Mystery Beauty Box has already shipped, so I have precious little time to get this up (which is my own fault, really...). I also like to wait until I've been able to try most, if not all, of the products I get in these subscription boxes, but I haven't found myself really reaching for anything in my box this month (which is not to say that I don't like these things; I just have so much stuff to use that I kind of forgot it was sitting there...).
Yay, overexposed picture of my bag!
Like usual, I'll start with the samples I got with this month's box (bag):
Normally, you only get two samples, but this month I got three! I got a sample of REN's Hydra-Calm Global Protection Day Cream, which I love, a sample of AFA Amino Acid Skin Care (sounds fancy!) Cream Cleanser with Dead Sea Minerals, which I am excited to try, and a not-quite-a-sample of Vichy Laboratories Spa Water facial mist. I say it's a "not-quite-a-sample" since you can buy this size of this product from blush.com (actually I think it's technically from dermstore.com but it's all the same) and I generally like to define something as sample-sized when you can't normally buy that size of a product (uh, if that makes sense). This size of Vichy's Spa Water retails for $9.50, which is pretty awesome considering I got this for absolutely free. Not sure if this was one of blush.com's specials or what (you can get free/discounted items with orders of a certain amount), nor do I know if other people got it as well. It's basically just a water spray for your face, but it feels nice and I'm not going to complain about free things.

Now onto what came in my bag this month! Once again, sticking with tradition, I'll start with this month's featured product:
Bioxidea's Miracle 48 Excellence Gold Face and Body Treatment. You could have gotten one of two different masks in your box; the Mircale 48 Excellence Gold or the Miracle 48 Excellence Diamond.

The gold mask is for acne-prone skin and the diamond is for sensitive skin, so I was happy with either one. What's really cool about this mask is that, after you use it on your face, you can melt it in warm water and add it to a bath! I did not do this since I don't like to take baths in my gross bathtub, but I like the idea. I really, really like this mask; it made my skin feel and look great and I just really dig the novelty of it. The Gold mask was actually gold! It even had little glitter particles in it! This is a sheet mask (as you can see in the picture on the card) that comes in two parts. The pouch had a good amount of extra serum in it, so I rubbed it into my hands (which made them also look and feel great!) and the mask itself was a lot more sturdy than I thought it would be (especially for something that is meant to dissolve). If this mask wasn't so expensive, I would totally buy it again and use it every week! A set of three of these masks retails for $74 (the diamond sells for a little more), making this single mask worth $24.67 (which is basically the entire price of my box!).

Continuing on in the order of my info card...
Next is the NYX Are You DeprEYEved Of...Mascara Serum in Jet Black.
Basically, this is a black mascara that's intended to make your lashes look thicker and fuller using peptides, lavender oil, arginine, biotin, soy proteins, and ginkgo biloba (which I wasn't expecting as an ingredient). I've never heard of this specific product before, but I am pretty familiar with NYX so I assume it will be, if nothing else, a pretty good mascara. I'm not really confident in its ability to make my lashes look any better (at least, while I'm not wearing it) and I am a little disappointed to get yet another lash enhancing product in a Blush Mystery Beauty Box (I believe this is the third one now). This product is the full size and it's worth $13.

This next product is one I'm pretty excited for:
NCLA Nail Wraps in Pizzo! I've never tried nail wraps before, and I've heard good things about the brand NCLA (which I've also never tried before) so I'm glad I got a set, even if the design isn't something I would have picked out myself (I do like it, I just probably would have went for something more colorful. Black and white isn't really my style). This pack has enough decals for two applications (there are 26 in total) and it comes with a nail file.
It's pink!
Here's the back of the package with the directions for application. I'm glad there's enough for two applications along with extras since I know I am going to mess this up the first (and probably second and third) times I try. I couldn't find this pattern on Blush.com so I don't know if it's old or what, but it was on the NCLA website. This is a full sized product and is worth $16.

Moving along, we have the Klorane Dry Shampoo With Nettle.
I've been able to try a few Klorane products now thanks to my Blush Mystery boxes and overall I really like the brand (especially my Desert Date Leave-In Cream). This is a dry shampoo that's sulfate-free (aren't they all? I thought sulfates were only in "regular" shampoo, the kind that needs water and lathers) and is intended for oily hair. I do not have oily hair; in fact, I have ridiculously dry hair and I try desperately to keep it hydrated. I ended up giving this to one of my co-workers who does have oily hair (by her own admission) and, while it wasn't something I could use, I wasn't disappointed in receiving it. This is one of those things that is probably very good, it's just not right for me. This is a full sized product and it's worth $19.50.

We're at the halfway mark! Well, I guess technically over the halfway mark since there are seven products in my bag and this is the fifth one...
This is DHC Deep Cleansing Oil. And...that's really all there is to say about it! This is a very simple product, but in no way is that a bad thing. This is an oil facial cleanser that's made in Japan and it has olive oil and vitamin E. I really like oil cleansers, especially at night. They're very good at cleaning my face but leaving it feeling hydrated, not tight. I have a lot of cleanser right now that I'm trying to go through, (...which is my own fault for buying both of the skin care sampler sets from Sephora but I can't resist the siren song of sample kits!) including my oil cleanser from Julep, so I haven't been able to give this a go yet, but I'm very happy to have gotten it. This is a full sized product (once again going by the definition of "can you buy it on it's own?") valued at $5.50. You can also buy a 6.7fl oz bottle for $28.

This next product is the most disappointing from this months box (that always sounds so sad, but it doesn't mean this is a terrible product; it just means, out of this collection of seven things, it was the one I liked the least).
This is a deluxe-sized sample of Elizabeth Arden's Untold Eau de Parfum. I will say I do appreciate this sample being a tiny version of the full-size; these little perfume bottles are cute and I like collecting them and I think they are a much more elegant way to sample a fragrance. The little glass vials are nice and all, but I feel like fragrances are complete packages; the shape and feel of the bottle can really change your perception (imagine if Chanel No. 5 was in a plastic body mist bottle. Not very classy, huh?). I haven't actually smelled this yet since I'm afraid of pulling out the stopper and getting it all over me and not liking the smell. I get the feeling this is going to be one of those generic "fancy perfumes" where there's so much going on that it just kind of smells like everything else. The top notes are black currant, bergamot, pink pepper, and pear; the middle notes are gardenia, peony, and jasmine; the bottom notes are sandalwood, patchouli, musk, and amber  (as you can see, it sounds pretty generic). In finding a value of this product, I calculated it purely on value per mL, which makes this 5mL sample worth about $3.95, but since it comes in a tiny bottle and box like the full sized, I'd say it would be worth even more (I know Victoria's Secret will sell little bottles of perfume about this size for $10).

Finally, I got a sample of VBeaute Rub Off Gentle Facial Exfoliator.
I'm big into exfoliation right now, especially before using facial masks, so I was pretty excited to get this. This is supposed to be a three-in-one; it cleanses, tones, and exfoliates. It has a cleansing agent derived from coconut (which I've been seeing a lot of lately), rosemary extracts, and exfoliation beads. I had a little difficulty in determining the value of this product; according to Blush.com, this is a full-sized product at 0.5fl oz (once again, by the definition that you could buy this size on its own) and is worth $18. You can also apparently buy a 3.4fl oz tube for $24 which...doesn't make a whole lot of sense, even taking into account that you usually pay more per ounce when you buy smaller sizes. Going by price per oz, this sample size is only worth $3.53.

And that was my February 2014 Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box! I got seven different products, four or five full sized (I don't know if I should count the VBeaute exfoliator as a full size or not), one deluxe fragrance sample, and a mask that is supposed to come in a set of three. Every Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box is guaranteed to be worth $100+ and this month the value of my box was $100.62. I really love this box because I feel like you're getting the biggest bang for your buck, especially compared to similar subscription services. This box is $24.95 a month (though you can buy individual boxes for $34.95; I would really recommend just subscribing. You can cancel at anytime (I think, I've never tried) and I don't think it's worth paying the $10 extra just so you don't have to subscribe), generally has 6-7 different products, and is backed by the trifecta of blush.com, dermstore.com, and hairenvy.com.

Thanks for reading! <3

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