Tuesday, April 8, 2014

March 2014 Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box - Unboxing and Review!

Hello! I'm still trying to get all these posts up before I get overwhelmed again! I'm surprised at how long this is taking me; usually I'm not such a procrastinator (except that's a lie and I totally am. I'm just really embarrassed about it...). With the weather getting nicer and the sun staying out longer, I think I'm starting to feel re-energized so perhaps I'll get back into the habit of keeping my blog (relatively) up-to-date!

This post, as the title suggests, is going to be an unboxing and review of my March 2014 Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box! I really love this subscription box; it's always worth the $25 I spend and you get so many different and interesting things.
A box of mystery!
 I like to start with the samples; with every order you make from Blush.com/Dermstore.com/Hairenvy.com, you get at least two free samples. I say "at least" since you're promised two, but I've occasionally gotten three!
Unfortunately, this month's samples are pretty boring. I got a foil packet of FAB's Face Cleanser (which I already use daily in the shower) and a foil packet of Amlactin's moisturizing body lotion. It did come with a $3 off coupon, which is nice, and I do like both of these brands, but I wish I would have gotten something I've never tried before. Now on to the box itself!

As always, I'm going to try and go in the order of the info card, which means I'll start with March's featured product: Skinceuticles Hydrating B5 Gel!
This is the front of the info card which talks all about the featured product and why it was chosen by this month's special curator, Dr. David Rahimi. At the start of every month, Blush.com releases a short preview video that talks about the featured item and how you can use it. I think it's pretty neat and I always get excited to see what the featured product will be.
This is the gel itself. It comes in a small, glass vial with a dropper (sorry it's kind of hard to see against my carpet...). This is an anti-aging gel that has hyaluronic acid to boost hydration. It's suggested to use this product in conjunction with Vitamin C treatments to increase their effectiveness. I like to put 1-2 drops on after my toner but before my nighttime moisturizer to help my skin stay fresh and hydrated. A full size is 1fl oz for $74, though I can't tel you how much this sample is worth since it didn't have any weight/volume measurements on it!

This month, we ended up getting eight different products, which I think is the most we've ever gotten!
On the back of the card it shows the other seven, along with a little info blurb. If it has five stars next to, that means the product has a five star rating on the website.

First up, we have the Suki 100% Organic Washcloth.
And...that's all it is, really. A 100% organic cotton washcloth. But it was still really nice to get! I don't actually own any washcloths and I like the fact that this is 100% organic cotton. I couldn't find this product on Blush.com (or Dermstore.com), but on the Suki website, this washcloth retails for $10.95.

Next is the seemingly randomly named Miracle Skin Transformer Hydroactive Microderm!
This is an exfoliator with somewhat confusing directions; it says it's safe to use every other day, but you're supposed to skip one week to let your skin rejuvenate. Does that mean use it for a week and then skip a week? I'm a big fan of exfoliators, especially during this transitional period between winter and summer (in Minnesota, we don't really have spring) when my skin isn't sure what it wants to do. This product has magnesium micro-crystals to exfoliate, vitamins C & E, licorice, and bearberry. A full size is 1.7fl oz for $34, making this 0.5fl oz sample worth $10.

Perhaps my favorite item in this month's box, next is the Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid.
This is a liquid/chemical exfoliant (as opposed to the previous one which is more of a manual exfoliant due to the beads) that uses beta-hydroxy acids to clear pores and kill acne causing bacteria. It also has green tea extract, which I assume helps the rejuvenation of your skin after the exfoliation. Paula's Choice is a skincare brand that Allura Beauty, a Youtuber that I follow, constantly praises due to the fact that it doesn't generally contain any "bad for your skin" ingredients like fragrances, alcohols, and certain oils. I've been using this almost daily since I got this box and I really like! I think it's definitely helping clear my skin up (after an initial purging stage that was horrible...). This is a product I would consider buying the full size of once I run out of this sample. A full size is 4fl oz and sells for $23, so this 1fl oz sample is worth $5.75.

Whew! Still have a lot more to go! Next up is a single pair of Talika Eye Therapy Patches.
The pouch is very shiny, so it my camera had a difficult time photographing it.

 Ugh, I'm sorry this ended up so blurry. You can get the gist of how to use these eye patches from the little pictures on the bottom. These are under-eye patches with ceramides, avocado oil, and essential oils that you leave on for about 30 minutes to help refresh and rejuvenate your eyes. You can use one pair up to three times, so this is a pretty good sized sample (at least, it's better than a one-time use sample!). I'm excited to give these a try since I've been interested in mask and mask-like products for use in the eye area (I feel like my eye area is one of less-than-perfect areas). A full size (which is technically a refill pack since I think there's a kit or something you buy that has these in it) has six pairs for $58, so this single pair is worth about $9.70.

Next is another product I'm pretty excited about: StriVectin-SD Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks and Wrinkles.
I'm a big fan of StriVectin products; the handful I've used in the past I've enjoyed and I feel like they really do what they say they do (if that makes sense...). Granted, they are a little on the pricey side, but I really think that a lot of their products are worth it! I'd much rather pay $80 for something that works well than $30 for something that works poorly. This is a cream that can be used on the face and body. It rebuilds collagen and it says you'll see an initial improvement in 2-8 weeks. This is a pretty hefty sized sample, and if you only used it on your face, I could see getting up to 8 weeks of use out of it, maybe more. A full size of this product is $139 for 5fl oz (see what I mean about expensive?), so this 0.75fl oz sample is worth $20.80!

Almost there! This next product is the only one I'm pretty sure I won't ever use (I actually already gave it away to my mom!).
This is the DCL Dermatologic Cosmetic Laboratories Ultra Light Hydrator. You could have got one of two different facial moisturizers; this one, which is intended for oily and acne-prone skin or the Facial Hydrating Cream which is for dry or mature skin. Since I have acne-prone skin (as it says in my beauty profile on Blush.com), I was sent the one for oily/acney skin. I haven't tried anything by this brand before, though we did get a cleansing oil from them in last month's box (at least, I think it was last month...). This product is oil-free and fragrance-free, which is great for sensitive skin like mine, but it has parabens in it which is why I decided to give it away. If I didn't have soooooo many other facial moisturizes to use right now I probably would have kept it, but I feel like I need to be a little bit more picky so I don't start hording them. This is a full sized product and it's worth $27.60 (so there's the box paid for right there!).

And finally, I got a Laura Geller Beauty Spackle Under Make-Up Primer.
I've heard a lot about this product before, though nothing too recently. I think I heard about it more when I was living at home since my mom would watch QVC and HSN all the time and, if I remember correctly, this brand was featured on there a lot. Actually, I don't think any of the people I watch on Youtube (not that Youtube is the be-all-end-all of make-up information, but it's a good place to start) have ever talked about this brand, much less this product before! This is a make-up primer (like the name suggests) that has skin conditioning ingredients like aloe, marigold, chamomile, mallow, and white tea. My skin tends to get irritated by primers (especially the Smashbox ones; I think I might be sensitive to a type of silicone) so I'm a little wary about trying this out, but I am curious to see if it lives up to the hype (real or imagined!). A full size is $30 for 2oz, so this 0.5oz sample is worth $7.50.

And that's everything! A good haul if you ask me! Overall, I got eight products. Out of those eight, two were full sized (the washcloth and the Ultra Light Hydrator) and six were deluxe sample sized. The total value of March 2014's Mystery Box, minus the B5 gel since I don't know how much it's worth, was $92.30. After adding in whatever value the B5 gel has (which I'm sure is somewhere around $10), I got the promised $100+ worth of products! The Blush.com Mystery Beauty Box is a great mid-range subscription box, especially if you're interested in beauty products that go beyond color cosmetics. I highly recommend it!

Thanks for reading! <3

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