I Need Your Help! Ipsy vs. Birchbox: May

Hi Beauties!

For this post I need your help!  I have decided that I want to explore more environmentally and animal friendly beauty products, and therefore I am going to sign up for a vegan beauty box.  I looked at a few, and the one I think I have decided on is Petit Vour.  BUT, I can’t really afford to have three beauty boxes every month!  Much as I would love that, it seems a bit excessive when trying to stay on a budget. SO, based on this month (and previous months), I need your help deciding which box (or boxes) to drop when a subscription to Petit Vour becomes available!  I just took quick photos of everything in each box for you to compare, but if you want to see and hear more about each item be sure to check out my video here!

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First off: Birchbox comes in its standard brown box, and Ipsy comes in a cute re-usable bag every month.

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Here are the goods!

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Birchbox – May, 2013

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Coola – Classic Sunscreen

First up is a sunscreen from Coola.  This is their classic sunscreen moisturizer with SPF 30, a cucumber scent and organic anti-aging ingredients.  The card says that it is a mineral sunblock, but the active ingredients are avobenzone (2%) and octinoxate (2.1%), which means that it is actually a chemical sunscreen.  Avobenzone is inherently unstable, and it breaks down into unknown chemicals when it absorbs UV light, this is what protects the skin.  I have a physical sunscreen from Coola that uses titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, which I love, so I do really like this brand!  They are environmentally friendly and cruelty free, so big thumbs up there!  This sample is 7mL; full size is 50mL and retails for $32.

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Beauty Protector – Protect & Detangle

Next up is a detangling leave in conditioner from Beauty Protector.  I have never heard of this brand before.  It comes in a rubbery bottle, and is a perfect size for travel, it would even be fine for a carry-on!  On the back of the bottle it says that it is a: Instant detangler, thermal protector, UV protector, that it seals cuticle, smoothes hair, locks in colour, adds shine, conditions, and is weightless, non-greasy and ideal for every day use on all hair types.  That’s a lot of claims!  I do need to use a spray in conditioner most days after the shower, as my hair gets super tangled.  I don’t often use heat, but a UV protector is nice!  I don’t have coloured hair, but I might this summer…  If it does all that it promises this will be quite the little product!  I can’t find a size on this anywhere to know how big the sample is, but full size is 8oz (maybe 4x the size of this?) and retails for $21.95.

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Joie – Folle de Joie eau de parfum

And here we have yet another perfume sample from Birchbox.  Enough already!  They all smell the same to me, floral and not my taste.  This one was one of the better ones that I  have received I do have to say though.  “For its debut scent, the chic fashion brand created this carefree mix of mandarin, rose and sandalwood”.  I probably like it better because it has some fruit but is also grounded with the sandalwood.  The small sizes are handy to carry in your purse, but I often find that without a cap these just spray whenever they want to and get all over everything…  This sample is 0.06fl oz, full size is 3.4 fl oz and retails for $98.  I’d have to REALLY love this to spend that much…

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Sumita – Colour Contrast Eyeliner

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Sumita – Colour Contrast Eyeliner

Next is an eyeliner from a brand called Sumita, another that I have never heard of…  “Inspired by traditional Indian formulas, this velvety liner glides on easily and lasts for hours”.  The colour is a really beautiful midnight blue, and the pencil did glide on really smoothly.  I often have worries about the staying power of such soft pencils on my eyelids as they get oily.  I find the UD 24/7 pencil liners go on great, but fade after a few hours.  I rubbed at this swatch after letting it dry for a few minutes, and I did see a bit of colour transfer, but I would never be rubbing my eyelids that hard!  The full size of this is a set of 4 minis (the same size) and I am assuming they                                    come in 4 different colours.  That set retails for $21.

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Pilot – Acroball Pen

Last and very least, we have a pen.  Really?  A pen?  Thanks Birchbox, but I don’t pay $10 for office supply samples.  It writes in pink ink, and came with a $1 off coupon for any 3, 4, or 5 pack.

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Ipsy Glam Bag – May, 2013

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Pacifica – Island Vanilla Perfume Roll-On

This smells so amazing!!  Like sugar cookies or vanilla icing.  Very sweet and delicious.  Not usually my type of fragrance, but I am loving this one =) “Inspired by the unique magic of Tahitian vanilla, this sensual blend sets sweet and sultry vanilla absolute, with honey-jasmine notes and a touch of fruitiness, against a deep and beautiful base of tea.”  This is 0.33 fl oz (10mL), which is full size!  And it retails for $12.  The Ipsy discount for this month is 20% off any purchase from Pacifica.  A portion of all of the sales from the Island Vanilla fragrance line goes to the Ocean Futures Society, a non-profit marine conservation organization, and it is 100% vegan.  How amazing is that!?

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Pacifica – Coconut Crushed Pearl luminizing body butter

Next is another product from Pacifica, the luminizing body butter.  This smells so delicious.  I am not usually a fan of fake coconut smell, but this one is actually really good.  It gives just a slight glow to the skin, so it would be really nice on your legs or just on your décolletage for a night out.  It is cruelty free and contains coconut oil, pearls and sea minerals.  “Shimmer and glow from the inside out with luminescent crushed pearls and ultra-nourishing tropical phytonutrients”.  This is a 2oz tube, which is their mini size, and retails for $7.  The full size is 8oz and retails for $24.  Again, the Ipsy discount is 20% off.

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Juice Beauty – Reflecting Gloss in “Fig”

This product is an exclusive pre-launch through Ipsy!  It is an organic lip gloss that smells delicious.  Fruity and sweet!  It has great pigmentation, as you can tell from the swatch, and has a doe-foot applicator.  It is made with acai and goji berries for antioxidants, as well as minerals and agave nectar (that’s what the smell is!).  I haven’t used this on my lips yet, but I’m sure I will love it!  I have loved everything else I’ve gotten from Juice Beauty so far =)  This is a full size sample, and it retails for $15.

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Juice Beauty – Reflecting Gloss in “Fig”

The discount is also 20% for Juice Beauty.

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Yaby – Concealer in “Buff”

The yaby concealer is actually not too bad of a match for my skin tone, kind of crazy for a beauty box sample!  I haven’t tried it on my face yet, but it seems to be quite thick and high coverage, so for me it would be a blemish and redness concealer, not for under my eyes.  I will have to let you know!  It is a full size refill, which has a value of $5.06.  The discount code for this is actually for camerareadycosmetics.com, and it is 20% off.

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Zoya – Nail Polish in “Neely”

The final product is a full size Zoya nail polish!  It is a really pretty colour called “Neely”.  To me this is more of a true minty green than Essie’s “Mint Candy Apple”.  I actually used it in the manicure that I put on yesterday, so keep an eye out for an Instagram photo!  The first coat goes on streaky, but the second really packs on the colour.  I love my Zoya polishes, so I am really excited to get a new one!  It looks like this could have come in any 1 of 6 pastel colours.  I’m happy with mine =).  The discount code for this is buy two get one free, plus a free 1oz Remove+ (their polish remover) and $5 shipping, pretty good deal!  Zoya polishes retail for $8 on their website.

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Zoya – Nail Polish in “Neely”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to let me know in the comments below which bag is your favourite and which one you think I should drop!  I can’t wait to show you the goodies I will be getting in my new boxes =)

xoxo

Recent Nail Polish Purchases

Hey Beauties!

Here is a quick recap of a few of my recent nail polish acquisitions =)

First off, I took advantage of the promotion that Zoya ran a couple of months ago, where you could buy three of their polishes, and only pay $10 shipping.  Of course I couldn’t resist!  I had never tried any Zoya polishes before this, so I figured it was the perfect time to try them out.  And I picked up an extra as well of course =)

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This is the extra polish that I bought that wasn’t included in the promo because it is one of their new “Pixie Dust” polishes called “Vespa”.  It is a mossy green kind of colour with a hint of grey to it, but the really unique bit is the texture.  These are the new textured polishes that everyone is coming out with this spring.  They are gritty, matte and sparkly all at once.  They do have a nice matte finish, and the glitter is really pretty, but boy the texture is weird!  It took me a full day to get even a little bit used to having it on my fingers.  I kept getting shivers down my spine whenever they would brush against anything.  (I’m getting them now thinking about my nails brushing against my wool peacoat!).  I did like it though, and I think next time I’m going to try it with my OCC Flatline matte topcoat to smooth it out a little bit.  Here is a swatch.

What about you guys, have you tried the textured trend?  What do you think?

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“Meadow” is actually what I have on my nails right now.  I’ll link my NOTD post here.  I bought this one because it is so different from anything else that I have in my collection.  It looks pale pink with beautiful golden shimmer running through it.  I thought it would be perfect for a light spring look.  It seems to apply a bit darker on the nail, but when I hold them up to the bottle it looks the same, so I don’t know what the trick is!  It comes off as a bit more of a dusty rose colour, but the shimmer really glows.  It is a beautiful polish that I think will be more versatile now and be wearable all through the year!

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This one I obviously had to get.  It’s my namesake polish! DSC07795 For those who don’t know, Zoya has a lot of polishes that are girls’ names, and it’s really fun to find the one that has your name.  I was really happy to find my polish is this gorgeous sparkly red =D.  In the bottle it is a rich red base with golden-orange chunkier shimmer (almost glitter, but not), running through it.  On the nail the golden-orange doesn’t show very strongly.  It comes off as a multi-dimensional red, and I am in love =D.  You can see it on my nails here in my Valentines Day NOTD.

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The last Zoya polish that I picked up was “Kimber”.  My camera had trouble handling this one because it is so bright!  It is a really vibrant pink, again with the nice gold shimmer running through it.  This is what I could consider “Barbie Pink”.  It is so amazing!  I haven’t worn it yet, but I have a feeling it will be on my nails a lot this summer =)

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Here are the polishes that I picked up at Sally’s and Walgreens:

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First is Orly “Rage”.  I can’t believe how long it took me to get this polish!  It has been EVERYWHERE in the beauty world for probably the past year.  I finally wound up getting it because they changed their packaging (boo!  the new stuff looks cheap) and so Sally’s was having a promo where if you spent $3 you got an Orly polish in the old packaging for free!  I rooted around in the basket until I found this one, and I was so happy it was there =)  It is beautiful!  A true rose gold metallic polish.  You can see it on my nails here.

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Here is the polish that I bought to get the Orly for free.  It is China Glaze “Graffiti Glitter” from the Bitz ‘N Pieces collection.  It drew me in with the rich green and black glitter.  I have to say I was disappointed when I swatched it on my nail wheel to think of St. Patrick’s Day Ideas.  I thought it was a black base packed with glitter, but it turns out it is a clear base with sparse green hexagonal glitter, smaller black hexagonal glitter, and black bar glitter.  I’m sure I’ll find something that will make this great, but I’m not inspired as of yet.

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This is another polish that I had been wanting, but not for quite as long.  This is Essie’s “Beyond Cozy” from their latest holiday collection.  I made myself be good and resisted buying it when it first came out, and then I regretted that as soon as it was sold out!  So when I found it in my local Walgreens I wasn’t about to let it get away again!  I can’t wait to try this one =)

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Finally; here is a nail art kit that I bought from Nasty Nails.  You can see the look I did with it here, as well as a review of the kit and the website!

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What are your recent purchases?  Have you been weak like me?  haha.

xoxo

Free Zoya Nail Polish Anyone?

Hey Beauties!

This is just a quick post to let you know about an amazing deal on Zoya nail polish that started this morning!  If you go to their website and enter the code “ZOYA2013” you get 3 polishes for free!  You do have to pay $10s/h, but that is standard on all Zoya orders anyways (unless you purchase 3 additional polishes, then shipping is free!).

I personally have never tried any Zoya polishes, so you can bet that I didn’t miss out on this chance to get my hands on a few!  I ordered 4.  The three I got for free were “Sarah” (after all, isn’t the Zoya rule that you have to have the one that is your own name?), “Kimber” and “Meadow“.  They are all in the reds/pinks colour family, as I don’t really have that much variety in my collection in that area.  I can’t wait to try them out!  The fourth polish that I got wasn’t in the promo because it is from their new “Pixie Dust” collection.  The colour I chose is “Vespa“, a light minty-green.  The special thing about this collection is that the polishes are packed with glitter, but dry with a matte, textured finish.  Something that will be totally unique in my collection!  This collection isn’t released yet, so technically it is a pre-order, and it will ship Feb 1 when they become available.  I will have swatches and reviews on my first impressions of Zoya when they all arrive!

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Zoya – “Kimber”

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Zoya – “Meadow”

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Zoya – “Sarah” (My namesake polish!)

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Zoya – “Vespa”

 

In the mean time, make sure you don’t miss this deal!

Click here: https://www.artofbeauty.com/rd/01682D10

Using any link in this post uses my “Share The Love” code.  If you sign up and order something, I will get points, and you will get a credit for a free nail polish!  You can then create your own code and share with family and friends and get the same deals =).

Let me know which polishes you order!

xoxo