The first item I received in November's box was the Arbonne FC5 Cooling Foot Creme. Arbonne's website is anything but a treasure trove of information and I really would have appreciated a description of some sort. The texture of the cream is dense, but pleasant on application. However, it has an extremely strong herbal scent which reminds me an awful lot of Vicks VapoRub. And the scent is not where the similarities end. On application you get a weird tingly cooling sensation that anyone who's been rubbed with Vicks as a child will recognise. However, it does not eventually warm up but it stays cooling and tingly for about an hour. It's a nice product to put on your feet after a long day (though I do recommend a foot bath beforehand, you don't want to rub anything on smelly, sweaty feet), but I don't think it's wowed me enough for me to repurchase. At £19 for a full sized tube containing 118ml it's not exactly cheap either.Dead Sea Spa Magik Dead Sea Bath Salts. The sample size was decent, as I got a good three or four (don't remember, sorry!) baths out of it, but that doesn't change the fact that they're, well... bath salts. Plain mineral bath salts at that. It didn't smell of anything, it didn't visibly do anything to the bath water and it didn't do anything to my skin either. I know that dead sea salt can be great at alleviating any kind of skin infections and also some skin conditions, but seeing as I don't have any of them, this was anything but impressive for me. The packaging also made it quite difficult to store once opened, as I has to make sure it was constantly propped against something to avoid spillages.
I was happy to find that I received a full sized product in my box, which was the Monu Skin Perfector. It's a daily moisturiser which claims to smooth out your complexion and form a protective barrier on your skin. It comes out really sticky, but once rubbed onto skin the stickiness subsides. I have two major issues with this product.
First of all, the scent. It's probably just me being a giant weirdo, but it smells very herby to me - not the kind of herbs you bathe in, but the kind of herbs you put in a pasta dish. I swear I can even make out some paprika in there. It makes me feel like I'm preparing a chicken fillet for dinner rather than pampering my skin.
Secondly (and this is probably a more important point) it does to an extent deliver on what it promises, BUT it does so by leaving quite a thick layer of product on your face. This screams blocked pores to me, but surprisingly it didn't lead to any breakouts until I tried layering it with a primer. Not a problem I thought, I'll use it instead of a primer. But here's the other problem: When used with a water-based and light foundation I did not have any trouble at all. However, when I tried to use a harder to blend foundation I bumped into trouble. As it leaves a film on your skin any sort of buffing motion will lead to the Skin Perfector just rolling off in sticky little balls and the end result is just patchy and hideous.
On its own it would be a great moisturiser, but then it doesn't have any SPF so you'd have to layer sunscreen over it, ergo blocked pores, ergo I don't like this at all.
|Sorry about the terrible quality; I had to take this picture with my phone.|
Finally, I got two perfume samples, L'Eau Serge Lutens and Vitriol d'Oeillet, both by Serge Lutens. I've already made my point clear about perfume samples in beauty boxes as have a lot of other bloggers, so I'm not going to repeat myself here. So what can I say about the fragrances? The first one (the silver one on the picture) was alright, but nothing special and I didn't like the second one (black), because it was too spicy for me.
Overall a lot of disappointing products, more like a box of "What not to buy" products apart from the nail wraps which I'm still undecided about.
Fortunately Glossybox managed to redeem themselves with the December box contents.
Some people got palettes, some people got mascaras and I was really hoping for a mascara as I'd just bought two big eyeshadow and lip palettes, so I didn't need any more. Seems like this time my prayers were heard and I got the Blink+Go Hi-Definition Mascara. Now, this mascara breaks my heart. When I first tried it I was absolutely amazed and thought I'd just found the best mascara in the world. The formula is quite wet, surprisingly so considering it's a waterproof product, but that didn't bother me at all, because it didn't smudge one bit. This little beauty managed to curl, lengthen and separate my lashes like nothing I'd ever tried. It was like a little magic wand that I only had to wave around somewhere near my eye area to make lashes magically appear.
|Eyes before mascara|
|Eyes after mascara|
The packaging is weighted, sturdy and elegant and the only downside to this mascara was that it was a bit of a pain to remove, but I was willing to look past that and spend an extra 5 minutes every night soaking my make-up off for this stunning effect. Then, after about a week, I noticed that it didn't seem to work that well anymore and it came off much easier at night. Three weeks after opening the tube it had completely dried out. Has this happened to anyone else or just me? I love this product to bits but if I'm going to repurchase it I'm going to need it to last for more than a week!
This Cargo Classic Lipgloss in Serengeti (a shade, which, according to their website, doesn't exist) turned out to be my least favourite product from this box. It looked like a lovely shade in the tube, a warm peachy coral, which is right up my alley, but on lips it just turned out to be so, so sheer.
My lips are naturally quite pink, so all you're seeing there is my normal lip colour with a bit of shine. I know it's only a gloss, but seriously, I've had body lotions with more pigment than this. The formula was sticky as you'd expect from a gloss, but it was on the tolerable side. The size of the sample wasn't great either - I got about 20 applications out of it and then the tube was empty. I definitely won't be rushing to buy a full size of this.
The next item (or two) was this Deborah Lippmann nail polish in Razzle Dazzle and a Stripper to Go sachet. I cannot find this shade online, so I consider myself very, very lucky to have got this, as it is just stunning. That's me talking about glitter nail polish when I don't even like glitter nails.
The finger mitt that came with it I didn't get on with at all, unfortunately. It didn't come with any instructions, so I just figured that you put your finger in, wait for a little bit so it can soak through and the pull it out. That worked fine on two fingers, but then the mitt dried out, so I had to resort to the tin foil trick which was a lot more effective as I could do all of my nails at once rather than soaking them one by one. I'd also like to mention that it smells so strongly it feels like you're inhaling poison.
But on to more positive things: the nail polish!
Apart from the rather obvious fact that the shade is absolutely gorgeous the formula of this polish is also fantastic. I achieved the above finish with just two coats which lasted for 4 days without the tiniest chip - and that's without topcoat. It felt quite gritty, but not so much that it would get stuck on my clothes and it's certainly something that could have been remedied by applying a top coat if only I hadn't been too lazy for that! Absolutely everybody has been commenting on my nails when I wore this and it has single-handedly turned me into a glitter nail convert.
Next up is the MeMeMe Seventh Heaven, a moisturising face base, or primer to you and me. I adore the fruity citrus smell of this product, as well as the light creamy texture. Everything about this primer is just refreshing and it doesn't sit on my skin at all which makes it a pleasure to use. You're supposed to leave this on for 2 to 3 minutes before applying foundation, but I've noticed that my skin drinks it up a lot quicker than that.
Unfortunately its lightness compromises its functionality quite a lot. In other words, it doesn't really work. I can notice barely any difference in how long my make-up lasts with or without this. Such a shame!
It's been quite an emotional roller coaster with me and the Rituals Foaming Shower Gel. First I saw the huge tube in my Glossybox and got all excited. Then I noticed it was shower gel and got disappointed. I always get a bit annoyed when I get shower gel as a present, because it's... well, just shower gel. The most it's ever going to do is get you clean and smell nice, and a lot of supermarket shower gels do that just fine. Not even the concept of foam is particularly new. It smells great, a lot more of mandarin than of mint which is a bonus for me, but I just couldn't get excited about this anymore.
Then I tried it in the shower. The mechanism on the bottle is not ideal, as it's hard to push only a little bit out rather than half a hand full. It comes out as a gel but then quickly grows into foam. Soft foam. I didn't think I'd ever say it, but this is just velvety soft foam. It feels luxurious and nourishing on my skin and feels like a little treat every time I shower. Finally, I realised that they don't sell this product online, but only in shops. Will I venture out to repurchase this? No, but I'll make sure I make this one last as long as I can and enjoy myself while I'm at it.
Have you tried any of these products? What were your experiences?