Tuesday, November 17, 2015

October 2015 Allure Beauty Box - Unboxing & Review

Hello! Hope you're having a great day! For this post, I want to share with you guys an unboxing and review of my October 2015 Allure Beauty Box.
Look at all those goodies! Again, I do not have a video to embed for this unboxing and, honestly, I'm not sure when I will start making them again. It's not that I don't like making videos, but there are still a lot of changes going on in my life and it's become stressful to find the time where I can make them. Heck, it's been hard to find the time to even blog about things (...evident by the fact that it's November 17th and I am writing about an October box). But you didn't come here to read my excuses; you came here to see the October 2015 Allure Beauty Box so let's get to it!
The Allure Beauty Box is a $15 a month subscription service that sends you around five deluxe- and full-size makeup and beauty product samples. These samples are picked by the editors of Allure, the premiere beauty magazine in the U.S. It is a bit more expensive than Birchbox or Ipsy, and I am still on the fence about whether or not it is worth that extra $5. There is no rewards program and the samples themselves are starting to seem less and less better than the cheaper services (if that makes sense; the September box was amazing in value, the October box is so-so, and the November box was kind of a let down). Allure does however provide you with a lot more information about the products than either Ipsy or Birchbox, so they have that going for them at least!
In every box, you get a mini magazine that contains all the information you could want (sans ingredient lists, but those are on the samples themselves) about your products. It also has a mini "letter from the editor" discussing the theme for the month and why the products were chosen. For October, the theme was "New Habits".
There was also a card about how you could win a $1000 shopping spree but mine was misprinted and was totally blank on the back so...no $1000 shopping spree for me I guess! I could have looked it up online, but I didn't really care all that much. I think it was one of those things where you agree to sign up for an e-mail list to enter and I really don't need anymore spam.
On to the products! I know these pictures from the booklet are kind of hard to read unless you click on the images to enlarge them, but they're so super informative, I really want to include them. First up we have the Bumble and Bumble All-Style Blow Dry cream.
This is, as the name suggests, a cream styling product you use to help you achieve the perfect blow out. I know many people are fans of the Bumble and Bumble line of products, even though they are quite expensive (admittedly, I use a $20 bottle of conditioner on a regular basis so I know that sometimes the price is justified), but I have yet to really find something from them I like. I also don't heat style my hair often out of laziness and lack of skill, but I did recently purchase a new blow dryer and flat iron in an attempt to learn, so this might actually come in handy. The unfortunate thing about this sample is that it is quite small, especially if you have longer hair; what makes it even worse is that, in the information, it suggests that you need to use more than you think you need. If you have really long hair, you might only get two uses out of this sample. The full size is $30 for 5oz, making this 0.5oz sample worth $3.
Next up we have the Rituals Ginkgo's Secret Ginseng and Ginkgo Biloba hand balm. Right off the bat, the information says this hand cream is nongreasy, but I beg to differ. I used this a few times now and, while I do like it, it never sinks in all the way and I end up having to wipe my hands on a paper towel before I touch anything. I also really don't like dimethicone in my hand creams; it leaves this weird film and instead of my hands feeling soft, they feel plasticky and even worse than before I used the cream.
I was worried I wouldn't like the smell since they say it's a green scent (there are some green scents I really like and others I can't stand; it depends on what kind of "freshness" it has, if that makes sense), but I don't mind the scent of this hand cream at all. I think the shea butter scents helps at a nice richness to the fragrance. Overall, though, not that impressed with this hand cream, especially for the price. I've used less expensive products that were a lot more moisturizing and that absorbed much quicker. This is the full sized product at 2.5oz and it is worth $17.
 For this next product, you could have gotten one of two options: the Jouer Daily Repair Treatment oil (which is what I got)...
...or the Jouer Daily Clarifying Treatment oil (which I wish I had got). I'm very curious about an oil that's supposed to help treat acne and, since I suffer from adult acne, I think it would have been a better fit for me than the Daily Repair Treatment oil. I'm not sure if Allure picks things for your box randomly in cases like this, or if there's some kind of system that decides.
The oil came inside its own information booklet, which includes a special coupon code, along with the ingredients list.
The coupon code is valid through December 31, 2015, so please feel free to use it. I am tempted to use it to purchase the clarifying treatment oil; I am that curious about it.
The Daily Repair Treatment is made up of a lot of different oils, including jojo and meadowfoam seed oil, and a bioretinol complex, so it seems like it will quite good for the skin (which is kind of the point). The full size is $48 for 1oz, so this 0.1oz sample is worth about $4.50.
Next up is the Red Flower Lymphatic Phytopower Sea Cleanser and Masque. I love it when they spell "masque" like that; it just seems so fancy!
This, as the info magazine says, is a cream cleanser and moisturizing mask in one. I like these types of products since they seem to be much more effective at removing make-up than more traditional foaming cleansers. There are a lot of interesting ingredients,including mushrooms for antioxidants and using citric acid as an exfoliant. I really like the suggestion that you can apply this cleanser in the shower, let it sit as you do your normal shower routine, and then rinse it off right before you get out so you get both the benefits of it as a cleanser and a mask without any extra work! The full size is $42 for 8.8oz, making this 1.1oz sample worth about $5.25.
Another "get one of x options" products, but this time it's an eyeshadow. A Cargo eye shadow to be exact! Everyone got a full sized eye shadow in one of four colors: Flint ("matte greyish brown"), Pasadena ("potent pink"), Oz ("yellow gold"), or Greenbay ("gold-flecked green"). I ended up with Greenbay, and I am very happy I did!
Oddly enough, on the box they make Green Bay two words, but in the information booklet, it's always written as one...
I've gotten a few Cargo products before in other subscription boxes, but I've never purchased anything from them myself. I know you can find products easily online, and Kohl's currently carries the brand (Ulta used to), so it's not like it's very difficult for me to get my hands on things, but I don't find Cargo as brand very appealing. The products I've used have been fine; nothing to complain about, but they also haven't been amazing enough for me to want to try more.
I will say that Cargo does have some unique packaging, though! Their single shadows, along with a lot of their cheek products, come in these neat little tins. They can be a little frustrating to open, especially if you have foundation or something on your fingers, but it does add a bit of luxe over regular plastic compacts.
 The color itself is gorgeous and very multi-dimensional. I took a couple of swatch pictures in different light to try and show how it changes, but I'm not sure how well they turned out. Green Bay is not a very strong color, but I think that works to its advantage, especially in its wear-ability. In some lighting, you can see more of the green...
...but in others you see more gold. I think this would be a great all over color just for a hint of something different, or you could use it to layer over other colors to add even more dimension. Regardless, this is probably my favorite product in this box! This is a full sized product and it is worth $16.
The last product in this box is also probably the most controversial. On the website for this Allure Beauty Box, you are promised at least five deluxe sized samples a month. In September we got a couple more (I think we got seven), but this month we got exactly five. This sample however, does not seem like a deluxe-size; it seems more like a sample that Sephora gives you when you order online.
This is a blister-card sample of three colors of Kryolan Lipstick Matt; Aurora, Eos, and Nike. I've never used a Kryolan lipstick before, so I am interested in trying these, but the packaging and sample size feels very cheap. No matter how much product you get in these blister packs, I feel like you only get one, maybe two uses before you have to throw it away. I would have much rather have gotten one of these colors in a deluxe-sized lipstick tube than three of them on this card.
We are treated with another discount code, again good through December 31, 2015, but I really can't get over how cheap this sample feels. I did not swatch any of the colors since I didn't want to open them and waste them and I haven't tried them yet since you can't really take this card around with you if you need touch ups. Overall and intriguing product, but a bad sample. I also decided to not calculate the value of this sample; it does have value, but it didn't seem like it was worth it to go through all the hassle to figure it out.

Overall in my October 2015 Allure Beauty Box I got two full size products, two deluxe size samples, and one sample that was essentially a foil packet. The value of my box, minus the Kryolan lipsticks, was $46.05, so I definitely got my moneys worth (actually, I got my moneys worth in just the Cargo eye shadow), but I can't help but feel a little underwhelmed by this box, especially compared to Septembers. I'm going to stay subscribed for now, but stay tuned since I did get my November box already and let's just say I'm not too pleased with it.

Thanks for reading! <3

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