Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Walmart Beauty Box (Winter 2014)

This box is one big crap-fest is what I would say if I had paid anymore than the five dollar shipping fee.

On the other hand, I have SO many samples from various subscription services that this is just more to add to the sad pile.  I should've held onto my five dollars and applied it towards a Memebox, a Korean beauty company.  But this is Walmart.

I received my box WAY late in December.  I almost thought they'd forgotten about me.  Or that I only THOUGHT I'd ordered it.  Anyway, it was five dollars so I wasn't concerned enough to check.

Wow... my enthusiasm is just palpable, isn't it?

I read several other bloggers' reviews, and the products they received were a bit better (and earlier), so I suppose I got the runt of the litter.  More on that later.

The products I received were:

Loreal Paris Color Vibrancy Nourishing Shampoo & Conditioner, and Instant Shock Treatment

Each foil packet is 0.34oz.  I've had these before.  I don't believe I DISLIKED them, but there's so little product I have to mix it with my standard Biolage hair products to fully coat my long hair.

John Freida Luxurious Volume Touchably Full Shampoo and Conditioner (plus $2 off coupon)

These foil packets are even smaller with only 0.28oz in each one.  This is a slightly higher end brand, but mixing it with my Biolage isn't going to give me an accurate feel for it.

Loreal Paris Age Perfect Cell Renewal Day Cream and Golden Serum

There's no mention of the size of these packets, but they're probably an ounce each.  I have so much Korean face creams and serums that are better quality and chemical free that I probably won't try this at all.

Nivea Cocoa Butter Body Lotion (plus $1 off coupon)

This package is 0.34oz, so probably one use on the hands.  Nivea's a good brand though, so, well, okay... just used it.  Nice stuff.
Pond's Wet Cleansing Towelettes

There are five of these and although I don't use this kind of product on my face, they're always good for a dirty tushie.

Pond's Rejuveness Anti-Wrinkle Cream

This 1.75oz deluxe sample (regular size is 7oz) is a good amount to try.  But I don't care for the chemicals in the ingredients list.  Think I'll pass this on.

Olay Tone Protecting Cream

How adorable is this teeny, tiny 0.24oz tube?  Again, too many chemicals in comparison to my beloved K-beauty products.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion

There's a full ounce to this lotion.  Like Nivea, Aveeno is a good product.  This size will be nice to throw in my purse on a dry day.

Some of the items other bloggers reviewed from the same season's box include: Maybelline Dream Wonder Powder card, Olay Fresh Effects Everything Off Makeup Removal Wet Cloths (7 count), Loreal Oleo Therapy Oil Infused Shampoo & Conditioner (2oz each), Jergens BB Body Perfecting Skin Cream (1oz), Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick (full-sized).

I might've preferred the 2oz Loreal Oleo shampoo and conditioner, but most of the other bloggers got the lipstick in a yucky brownish bronze called "Maple Kiss" and they weren't terribly fond of it.  I believe the Fall box I received was much better.  I don't think I'll be trying another seasonal Walmart box.  Most of the samples were stuff you can send off for by visiting the companies' websites for no shipping costs anyway.

Memebox: Special #48 Rose Edition

This is my ninth Memebox, I have four more sitting here and two ordered.  I'm OBSESSED with Memebox.  They are not a subscription service; instead they allow you to only buy the boxes you're interested in, although most are mysteries.  I would be stoked if they did have a subscription service though.  

A little background:  "Memebox curates only the most trusted, best-loved Korean beauty products at everyday prices. An extremely competitive industry, Korean cosmetics are renowned for their unprecedented quality developed through cutting-edge technology."

I was disappointed to miss out on the Scentbox #1 Rose, which had some wonderful looking products in it including a foam cleanser and plumpy lip tint by Rosemine, a body wash by Happy Bath, and a skin primer by Hope Girl.  So I was all over this one!

This box cost $23 (plus $6.99 S+H), but by buying it when it first went on sale to VIPS, I saved $3, paying $26.99, and there was a total value of $120.

"Enhance your mood, enhance your beauty, and bask in rose-y goodness!  Roses, associated with beauty and romance across cultures, has been the root of beauty rituals for centuries.  Historically romantic and brimming with beauty benefits, roses are packed with nutrients that naturally soothe and revive the skin, body, and soul!"

"Everything from classic rose-scented treats to rose-infused beauty delights, this Memebox Rose Edition lets you experience all the beauty benefits that this miracle flower has to offer."

Included in this kit were five full-sized items and one deluxe sample, fully-detailed with a great informational card with directions for use, which is extremely helpful since the directions on the packaging is almost all in Korean.

KSKIN Bulgarian Rose UV Whitening Cream SPF50+PA+++ (50ml FULL-SIZE) - Enriched with Bulgarian rose oil, green tea extracts, hydrolyzed collagen, arbutin, and adenosine, this tone-balancing and brightening facial cream protects skin with a high UVA/UVB level all season long and also works to bring back the healthy glow to dulled complexion.

ROSERY Premium Feminine Secret Cleanser (50ml Deluxe Sample) - The Rosery Premium Feminine Secret Cleanser is infused with Bulgarian rose oil and rose petal extracts for a lingering romantic rose fragrance in the most secretive and sensitive part of feminine body.  Its soft and gentle foam bubbles  will cleanse away any foul odor or impurities and create a protective barrier for maintaining refreshed, clean body.

The first selfie is of my expression when I read the instructions for the feminine cleanser and saw the word 'pudenda' to describe the female anatomy.  The second selfie is of my expression when I realized that I had a nice, less offensive new word to describe the female anatomy.

The whitening cream was a bit of a shock when I applied it because, well... it actually whitened my face.  Most Korean beauty products that are labeled as 'whitening' are actually more like moisturizers to get rid of dark spots on the skin.  This was really a primer.  I tried using it in the middle of my nighttime beauty routine and had to clean off and start over.  It didn't really smell like roses to me; just slightly floral.  Had I known, I would've saved it for the swap pile.  But I may try it the next time I wear makeup as a base.  The feminine cleanser smelled wonderful, and although I used it this time as described (for science), I think I'll just use it as a body cleanser from now on.

LANGSRE Rose Berry 700 Sleeping Pack (50ml FULL-SIZED) A deeply hydrating sleeping pack formulated with rose water and real rose petals.  It'll revive the dewy, brightened complexion within you overnight by delivering rich nutrients and moisture deep down into the skin.

ASTON NATURE Organic Rose Hip Oil (30ml FULL-SIZED) - A 100% organic rose hip oil which deeply nourishes, softens, and protects the skin, for a heather, silky smooth complexion.

The sleeping pack had only a faint rose smell.  The texture was like jelly and pleased me in appearance.  It made my face super soft.  The rose hip oil didn't have a rosy scent.  I believe it's more about the ingredient than the smell.  I found it left my skin slightly greasy though despite its high retail value, so it will not be a regular part of my routine.

MILKY DRESS Blooming Rose Skin Toner (130ml FULL-SIZED) - This gentle rose floral water hydrates the skin for a plump and toned complexion.  The natural aromatic experience also adds a mood-enhancing effect and it is recommended to use it for revitalizing the skin throughout the day, setting makeup, and soothing skin irritations.

ETUDE HOUSE My Castle Hand Cream Forever Rose (130ml FULL-SIZED) - Made from a blend of shea butter and 6 kinds of organic herbs - centella asiatica, aloe, lavender, lemon verbena, marshmallow roots, and chamomile - the My Castle Hand Cream is extremely hydrating and scented with a lovely golden rose fragrance for a long-lasting pleasance.

In addition to having lovely rose petals floating about the bottle, the skin toner was amazing.  It had the most intoxicating fresh rose scent, and made my skin feel really nice as the first step of my beauty routine.  The hand cream went on easy and did not leave a greasy residue.  The initial smell was a bit off-putting, but got better as it absorbed into my skin.

THE VERDICT:  Just opening this box was amazing.  The whole room smelled like fresh roses as soon as I took it out of the package.  Minus the whitening cream, everything in this box was a winner.  Another great Memebox!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Memebox: Luckybox #10 + Muddy Girl Face Mask Set

This is my seventh Memebox, and upon its review, I will officially be caught up after having to skip around to review some other boxes.  I am OBSESSED with Memebox.  They are not a subscription service; instead they allow you to only buy the boxes you're interested in, although most are mysteries.  I would be stoked if they did have a subscription service though. 

A little background:  "Memebox curates only the most trusted, best-loved Korean beauty products at everyday prices. An extremely competitive industry, Korean cosmetics are renowned for their unprecedented quality developed through cutting-edge technology."

I was so impressed with the first Luckybox I bought (#9) that I had to order this one when it came out.  Luckybox #9 came with a high-quality pore control powder serum, a powder wash face cleanser that I can no longer live without, and a very refreshing essence water, among other items.

This box was $23 for the kit (plus $6.99 S+H), and using a $5 off coupon code, "C3BL" and 5 Meme points, I paid $19.99.  With a $146 value, I can tell I received another great deal.

"In this Luckybox #10, you'll find all your favorite beauty goodies featured in previous Memeboxes."  Since I only discovered Memebox in August, I missed a lot.  So I imagine this stuff will all be new to me.

Included in this kit were SIX full-sized items and a box of samples, fully-detailed with a great informational card with directions for use, which was extremely helpful since the directions on the packaging is almost all in Korean.

DR. MJ Bee Tox Control Cream (55ml FULL-SIZE) - Repair and renew with Dr. MJ's Bee Tox Control Cream rich in skin-repairing agents - bee venom, propolis extracts, tea tree leaf water, rosemary extracts, and calendula extracts.  It'll soothe, nourish, and rejuvenate the skin damaged or stimulated from external environment by creating a protective moisture barrier over and retaining moisture and nutrition within the skin.

MSTAR Malus Intensive Hair Treatment (30g FULL-SIZED) - Consisting 70% of apple water and made from 40 different kinds of naturally-derived extracts, the Malus Intensive Hair Treatment works to replenish protein and mineral nutrients to dry, damaged hair ends for strengthening and firming up the hair with continuous use.
I really enjoyed the face cream.  I used it with the water mist and snail bee essence for an all-encompassing skin care process.  The cream was very light and made my skin so soft.  The hair treatment was nice and conditioning but honestly not anything super special.  The scent is heavenly.

THE SKIN HOUSE Aloe Water Mist (80ml FULL-SIZED) A finely spraying facial mist, the Skin House's popular Aloe Water Mist is packed with aloe moisture for delivering instant replenishment to dry or irritated skin.  A gentle, hydrating mist is definitely a beauty essential for every girl all season long!

BENTON Snail Bee High Content Essence (60ml FULL-SIZED) - Instead of water, this facial essence uses snail secretion filtrate, bee venom and EGF to cleanse your rough, damaged skin from external stresses and pollution.  In addition to the skin-trouble care, moisture supply, and skin tone improvement functions, it also helps brighten up your complexion and remove signs of aging.

The water mist I used like a toner and it was refreshing.  I really liked it.  The essence, now I can't be certain just from a few uses, I can't tell if what changes it's made, but it does feel nice.

E CHOICE Snow Brightening Body Cream (100g FULL-SIZED) - Rich in mineral and herbal complex, the Snow Brightening Body Cream is an instant skin brightener which offers a long-lasting tone-up effect as well as a deep hydration and nourishment.  It's especially recommended for those troubling over darkened spots, uneven skin tones, or pigmentation.

BEAUTY PEOPLE Miss 100 Auto Gel Pencil Liner in Glimmer Coral (0.5g FULL-SIZED) - Feature a sophisticated point eye makeup with Beauty People's gel liner pencils that can be used as both a liner and a shadow.  They're auto-type liners that easily glide onto your eyelids, making them easy to use for even makeup beginners.  Plus, there's an eye liner sharpener attached on the other end for convenience.

BLITHE Patting Water Pack (6 pouch samples, 5ml each) - No need to stick on a sheet mask every night with Blithe's all-new Patting Water Pack!  Simply through patting on the water pack onto your skin, it'll remove dead skin cells, deliver moisture and nutrition, and renew the skin balance for maintaining soft, moist skin condition.  The Energy Yellow Citrus & Honey revitalizes and brightens up the skin and the Soothing & Healing Green Tea is for oil and pore control, while the Rejuvenating Purple Berry works to improve skin elasticity and firmness.

I'm not going to use these last three items for various reasons, and instead give them a good home with someone else.  The snow brightening body cream won't be in my collection because I have so many other really high quality lotions and creams.  The gel liner would've been great in a different color, but I really need a black, charcoal or purple for my green eyes to pop.  And the patting water packs just seem like too much work.  I bet they're fantastic but I like to keep my beauty routine a little more simplified.

THE VERDICT:  Despite not choosing to use the last three products, I was supremely happy with this box.  The mist, face cream and essence are going to be a part of my skin care regimen for a long time, and I'm happy with how my face feels from using them for the past few days.


PURESMILE Muddy Girl 5-piece set (10g x 5) - This wash off type mud pack made from natural derived ingredients - clay, mud, and charcoal - works to soothe purify, moisturize the skin, prevent dehydration and resurface the skin's texture.

Includes: Charcoal, Mud, Kaolin, Pearl and Red Clay.

I ended up getting these for free.  Normally they'd cost $5 plus $6.99 S&H, but I had 5 Meme points to use, and once I applied them and had a zero dollar total, I guess website just didn't calculate shipping.

I was skeptical about this product because I used the jelly packs by the same company, but despite my dislike for those, I really liked these.  The mud goes on thick and gooey, and dries after about fifteen minutes.  Then you wash off with water.  I used a rag to assist and it came off pretty easy.  My face felt clean and fresh afterwards.  I don't know which type I used because there was no way to tell from the packaging, but the one I used smelled like roses.  I'm excited that I still have four more.