Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Allure Sample Society (June 2015) by beautybar.com

Allure Sample Society is quickly becoming one of my favorite subscription services.  A little background:

"Allure editors don't just obsess over beauty products — they uncover the groundbreaking, game-changing formulas making waves throughout the beauty sphere, from hair and makeup to skin care and fragrance."

"They do all the legwork so that you can do the fun part: open a glossy red box filled with five hand-picked, editor-tested products every month. Bonus: Allure editor-penned mini-magazine boasting in-depth reviews of each sample."

Here's what's included:
  • Five deluxe-size beauty samples—so you can use each one more than once
  • Curated mix of skin, hair, and makeup products, as well as fragrance
  • Allure mini-mag, packed with in-depth beauty sample product reviews written by Allure editors
  • $10 BeautyBar.com gift card to redeem on any $50 Beauty Bar purchase

I really dig the mini-mag.  Very professional and so much information on the products!  Definitely the best, most descriptive tool I've seen in any box.  Each page has a "What It Is," "How It Looks/Feels," "Why We Like It" and the retail price of the full-sized item.  Some products have a "What It Does," as well as a "Key Ingredients" list.  A lot of people have allergies or find certain ingredients affect their skin in negative ways, so I think this bonus information is great.

Here's what I received:

ST. TROPEZ Self Tan Express (1.69oz, $11.10) - A fast-acting self-tanner foam for the body which allows you to customize the depth of your self-tan.  It has a light floral scent and an odor-eating formula that doesn't stink as the color develops.

COMPLETELY BARE Wax Strips for Face, Bikini & Body (QTY/VALUE, unknown) - Prewaxed hair-removal strips which remove hair when warmed by your hands.

COTZ FACE Sunscreen SPF 40 in Natural Skin Tone (0.18oz, $2.40) - A water-resistant sunscreen with a sheer tint.  Provides long-lasting, broad-spectrum sun protection while minimizing shine.  It also doesn't interfere with makeup.

I was pretty excited to try the self-tanner.  First I should remind you... I am white.  Not just Caucasian white, but like ghostly white.  So a self-tanner is my ultimate nemesis because it is going to turn me orange.  However, this one went on with a greenish tone.  I separated the part of my arm I tried it on into three sections.  I washed the first section off after one hour, the second part after two hours, and of course the third after three hours.  Supposedly there should have been a difference in darkness depending on the length of time before washing off.  I didn't see that, but I was surprised by the natural tint it left.  Sure the final result looks like I have a giant, mostly healed bruise on my arm, but I'm pleased enough that I'm going to try it on my paper white legs next weeks.  Maybe (gasp) I'll wear shorts!!!

I didn't find the wax strips to be any different than the Nair versions in stores. They'll pull the hair off, but they leave a lot of stickiness where the hair used to be.  The sunscreen felt nice, moisturizing, but the tint was a little dark for me.  That being said, I am (shock) pale.  So more than likely it'll work great for you.

E.L.F. STUDIO Small Stipple Brush (FULL SIZE, $3.00) - A synthetic makeup brush that can be used to apply creams or liquids - foundation, blush, or bronzers (not powders.  The white-tipped long and short bristles are packed in two layers.

LAUREN B. BEAUTY Nail Couture in Polo Lounge Punch (0.5oz FULL SIZE, $18.00) - A deep-pink nail polish with a wet-looking finish.  The formula is free of DBP, toluene, and formaldehyde.

This brush feels very nice.  I am only just starting to understand the intricacies of 21st century makeup application, so I always need new, quality brushes.  The polish is really pretty and only needs one coat to achieve solid color, and it's super easy to apply.  In the picture to the left, it is the deep burgundy stripes.

eSALON Perfect Ending Leave In Conditioner (1oz, $3.99) - A leave-in conditioning cream for color-treated hair.  Restores shine and moisture, makes hair smoother and, if it's knotty, easier to untangle.  The white cream has a light, clean, floral scent that disappears almost immediately.

I LOVE ESALON!!!  I recently used them for the first time and did an eSalon post devoted to it.  I haven't really had a chance to figure out how well this leave-in conditioner works, but if it's anything like their other products, I imagine I'll love it.

The thing that really bums me out is that the exclusive offer of 50% off is only available to new users.  I think if you're going to include a coupon in my box, it should be something I can use even if I've already been there, done that.  I will also say that you can find 50% off coupons for first time use of eSalon pretty much everywhere online.  All that being said, I think... yes, I'm sure... I just heard my husband saying he wants to start dying his hair the same color as mine.  Hmm... I do believe he is a first-time user!

I calculate this June box to have a value of $38.49, not including the wax strips or the 50% off coupon from eSalon.  All of the products are good sizes, and I think this is a fantastic summer box, which fits the theme, "A Day at the Beach."

Next month the box will no longer be affiliated with beautybar.com, so I'm anxious to see how Allure does with their first box.  It should be interesting.

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