Sunday, June 8, 2014

Sephora Favorites Summer Crushes Kit - Review!

Hello! It's all rainy and gross today, so I've been staying inside and getting a bunch of things done! I feel bad for my husband, though, since he had to go out and work today in rain (he's home now, but his socks and shoes were sopping wet). I was able to get a couple videos filmed, which means I can make a few blog posts and get my desk area nice and clean ( gets out of hand really easily). I've also noticed that I don't really use products when they're sitting around my desk and then I forget I have them and then I buy more things and end up with way too much stuff. It's a weird, first world problem...

For this post I'm going to do an in-depth review of the Sephora Favorites Summer Crushes Kit! I love the Sephora Favorites sets since I love deluxe sample/mini sizes of products and trying new things. This review took me a little while to post since I wanted to make sure I was able to at least try all of the products (though there is one I still haven't used) and have a well-informed opinion.
 Summer lovin', had me a blast...

Summer lovin', happened so fast... I've never actually seen Grease. Well, I think I saw a high school version of it once, but I've never seen the movie or anything. Weird, I know. It's one of those cultural things that I know about but never experienced.

SO, the Sephora Favorites Summer Crushes kit is a special, limited edition kit that Sephora has released for the summer (obviously). It's $45 for ten deluxe sized samples and is apparently worth $120 (I'm going to trust Sephora on this one; I don't really feel like calculating the actual value). What I really like about this kit is that it includes a lot of different products that I haven't tried before, including things from brands I've never tried anything from before! I'm such a sucker for these sets; it's the lure of trying new things and deluxe sample sizes are so much easier to use up in a timely manner!

I'll start with the one product that I did not actually use...
This is the Vita Liberata Luxury Tan pHenomenal 2-3 Week Tan Mousse. I have no idea how much of that is the actual name of this product, but it's what written on the front. I think this is a newer brand to Sephora; I've never heard of it before, but then again, I'm not really into fake baking. I was pretty excited to try this since I haven't been tan since I was little and actually enjoyed being outside but I've never ever fake tanned before and I was intimidated by how complex the instructions are. They're not ridiculous or anything, but it's definitely a process. I might be better off starting with one of those gradual tan body moisturizers that Jergens has.
Sephora also included a mini tanning mitt! Again, this was one of the things that drew me to this kit; I know it sounds weird, but I love these really "complete" feeling kits. You really need a tanning mitt when you fake bake (at least, that's what I've come to understand) and I appreciate that the creators of this box didn't assume that everyone already had one or wanted to go out and get one.
This is the Living Proof Restore Mask Treatment for dry or damaged hair. I think hair masks are going to be the "hair thing" for this summer; last year it was sea salt/beach texture sprays. I've gotten a ton of different hair masks in my subscription boxes and, to be honest, I don't really like them. My hair is dry and most likely damaged, but using hair masks generally makes it feel worse, not better. I didn't really see any improvement from this mask, and it has a sharp, almost citrusy smell that I don't really like. This is a pretty "meh" product to me and probably the one I was least excited to try in this set.
Speaking of texturizing sprays...this is the Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray! This is a very popular product from Bumble and Bumble and it's pretty nice as far as texturizing sprays go. My hair already has a lot of texture, but this spray makes it look more purposeful, if that makes sense. I do appreciate that this spray does not have a very strong scent; last year a lot of the sprays I had were heavily perfumed and it got a little overwhelming. I also like the size of this product. Since these types of sprays are more of a seasonal thing, I find that it's much easier to go through a small bottle like this during the summer and then I don't have to store it for the winter (and then I usually end up throwing it out anyways since the next season always bigger and better things).
I was really excited to give this product a try! This is a good sized bottle of Divine Oil by Caudalie. I love beauty oils (like maracuja; I would probably like argan oil if I wasn't allergic to it...) since they're multi-use and they tend to work well with my sensitive skin. You can use this in your hair, on your face, for your nails, on your body...anywhere you already use a beauty oil. I also really like how this oil smells; it's very faint, but it has a nice, warm, greenish scent, kind of how I imagine sunny meadow air smells. A little bit goes a long way and my only complaint about this product is that there's no applicator or dropper or pump or anything; it's just a screw-top bottle so it can be difficult to dispense the amount you want and not waste any.
This is another product that really intrigued me! This is the Shrinking Beauty firming, sculpting, and toning lotion by DermaDoctor. I'm pretty sure I've never used anything by DermaDoctor before, and this lotion apparently uses lobster-inspired technology (there's not any actual lobster in this product). Which is weird and awesome. You rub this on your stomach, butt, and/or thighs and it's supposed to tighten and firm your jiggly parts. I used this a few times and didn't notice any real results. The full size of this product is pretty expensive and the reviews are all over the place. Some people love this lotion and can't live without it, others felt like it did nothing and that they wasted their money. This is a product I would recommend trying a sample of first to see if it even works for you before you invest in the full size.
Technically, I didn't use this specific item, but I have a bunch of Jack Black lip balms laying around and I've tried this flavor before. This is a mini size of the Shea butter and vitamin E Jack Black lip balm! I really like these lip balms. They're very moisturizing, they last a long time on my lips, and they provide good sun protection. It's important to make sure you put sunscreen on all parts of your face; a lot of cancerous lesions are found around the mouth and along the hairline since that's where people tend to neglect putting on sunscreen. I'm glad Sephora chose to include the Shea butter and vitamin E flavor; it's very neutral and there really isn't any taste/smell to speak of (maybe a little Shea butter, but it's subtle and pleasant). Even though this is a mini, this will last me a while and it's a good way to give this product a try before you drop the $7.50 on a full sized tube (which is totally worth it, but it is a little expensive for a lip balm).
This is a sample size vial of the Lavanila Vanilla Coconut fragrance (I have no clue if this is an EdP or an EdT or what). I love vanilla scents since it can be complex and simple at the same time, and I really like perfumes that are one or two notes (any more and it gets muddled and you end up with Fancy Perfume smell). I was a little worried the coconut would make this smell too much like suntan lotion, but the vanilla is the main player here, while the coconut is more like a back-up dancer. You can smell that there's something besides the vanilla, but it's hard to tell what it is at first. This scent is very warm and inviting without being heavy and overwhelming. It's very natural and youthful and it makes me think of sitting on the beach eating ice cream. Also this product is "healthy" (no petrochemicals, phthalates, propylene glycol, mineral oils, silicone, synthetic dyes, sulfates, or parabens. Yay!), 100% recyclable, and not tested on animals! Awesome.
This is another great product that I'm glad Sephora chose to include in this set! This is the Murad Essential-C Sun Balm stick. I love Murad products and I find that their Essential-C line leaves my skin feeling and looking radiant, so I'm more than happy to give another product from that line a try. Basically, this is a solid sunscreen you can apply like a deodorant. It's great to throw in a purse or beach bag since it won't leak and get everything gloopy, and it makes getting sunscreen on more difficult and often overlooked areas much easier (such as your hair part or the tops of your ears). If you apply sunscreen religiously, this probably won't last too long, but if you end up liking it you could always get the full size and keep this around for emergency touch ups!
I was also really intrigued by this product! This is the Cool Fix Targeted Gel Lotion by Shaveworks. This is another product and brand I've never tried before. It was really smart of Sephora to include this product in a summer essentials kit since a lot of shaving goes on during the summer! Shaving can be very irritating (there's a statistic I saw in a Dove ad; it was like, 67% of what your razor removes is hair, the other 33% is skin. Which is disgusting and sounds awful) and I end up with bumps and irritating on my legs if I do it too often. A little of this goes a long way and it has a pleasant cooling sensation. It also has a subtle, unisex fragrance so you don't have to worry about smelling fruity or flowery or that it will compete with your perfume/body lotion/other means of artificially making yourself smell different. Really happy to be able to give this a try!
Finally, this is the Supergoop! City Sunscreen Serum. Sorry to end on kind of a dull note, but this is a good, essential product and I'm glad Sephora included a couple sunscreen-type products in this kit. I've used Supergoop! products before and have generally been pleased, and this one is no different. I do like that it has a lighter texture, especially for a sunscreen, so it makes my face feel less gloopy in the morning.

Overall, I'm pleased with this kit. It is a little on the pricey side at $45 dollars, and it is kind of lame that none of the products are full sized (they really couldn't include a full size Jack Black lip balm? Would it really have made that much difference cost-wise?). If you are debating between this kit and the Sun Safety Kit, I would almost say go for the Sun Safety Kit. You get a lot of good products for less and part of the proceeds go to the skin cancer foundation, but if you're less interested in sun protection and more interested in trying a variety of products (like I am! I didn't get the Sun Safety Kit this year since it was pretty much the same as last year. I've tried pretty much everything in it and I have a bunch of sunscreens from subscription boxes and whatnot) this is definitely the bag for you! If you're more interested in color cosmetics, I'd check out the Summer Stash kit, but the one from the Sephoras in JCPenney. I'm glad I got this kit and was able to try all these products; there are some definite standouts and  my top two are the Caudalie Divine Oil and the Lavanila Vanilla Coconut perfume!

Thanks for reading! <3

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