Sunday, November 24, 2013

IPSY BAG: October 2013

happy sunday! 
i finally have time to sit down and blog about this ipsy bag :) 

this weekend was quite eventful since we had the company holiday party on Friday night. it was a good time and i love dressing up for these occasions. holiday decorations and music make me so happy! the celebration was located at Spruce Meadows - i have not ventured out here before but i hear the Christmas Market is pretty fun. 

here's a picture i posted on instagram with my fellow accountants :)

and nowww the ipsy bag for October: "The Art of Beauty".

1) Bella Terra Mineral Cosmetics Mineral Shimmers in "NSH20 Emotion"
It's easy to create a variety of looks with Bella Terra Mineral Cosmetics Mineral Shimmers! As an 8-in-1 product, the Mineral Shimmers are a creamy eye shadow, matte eyeshadow, eyeliner, lip color, nail polish, mascara, body glitter, and hair color for fun hair streaks! Available for purchase in 60 luminous and luxurious shades.

this is a very shimmery purple pigment. the shimmer does not show up as much in the swatch though. i hardly reach for mineral eyeshadows but these are definitely fun for holiday parties! this was not very long lasting so i would suggest a primer, which would also help with the color intensity. 

the other option ipsy subscribers received was Navy. 
size: 2 g
retail value: $14.99 (2.5 g)
promotion: 50% off purchase and free shipping [expired Nov 15, 2013]

2) Coastal Scents Classic Medium Shadow Brush - Natural (BR-C-N02)
The Coastal Scents Shadow Brush is a medium sized brush made out of natural fibers that is wide in shape and condensed to allow an even distribution of eyeshadow on the lid. This professional cosmetic brush can be used for shading the crease and highlighting the brow bone with complete precision.

i used to contemplate about placing a Coastal Scents order for the longest time... but just never went through with it. now i get the chance to try one of their brushes! i was actually looking for this particular size of a brush. the natural hairs (there is also a synthetic version) are quite soft. i used this brush with the Bella Terra mineral shimmer - it picked up the product well and distributed the product evenly.
size: 1 brush (full size!)
retail value: $2.49
promotion: 25% off purchase [expired Nov 7, 2013]

3) Nourish Organic Deeply Nourishing Coconut & Argan Body Lotion
Nourish Organic's new Deeply Nourishing Coconut & Argan Oil collection is a new collection of ultra-moisturizing body lotions and body washes that hydrate, soften and smooth the skin. These products contain highly concentrated, precious ingredients that replenish your skin with essential nutrients and restore your skin's natural glow.

this body lotion has a whipped kind of texture and absorbs quickly... maybe too quickly - i feel that i need to use more of this lotion in order to feel that my hands are "deeply nourished". it's great if you don't like the greasy feeling afterwards (my guitar-playing boyfriend would have no complaints about that!). the scent is coconut and argan with hibiscus (i prefer just coconut but this smells alright - not too strong). according to ipsy, the hibiscus is rich in antioxidants and protects from environmental damage. other scents available are Lavender Mint and Almond Vanilla.
size: 30 mL
retail value: $9.99 (236 mL)
promotion: 20% off Nourish Organic purchase on target.com or in store [expired Nov 10, 2013 and N/A in Canada]

4) Sexy Hair Spray Clay Texturizing Spray Clay
The Sexy Hair Spray Clay Texturizing Spray Clay creates and allover textured look with a matte finish. This spray allows for a fine and even product distrbution and is great for all hair types.

this Spray Clay is used for adding texture and movement without the crunchiness.
you can use the product just like a regular hair spray (same nozzle and aerosol can).

as you can see, the cap on mine is a little bunged up but the product is okay.
size: 50 mL
retail value: $18.95 (157 mL)
promotion: $5 off $25 Sexy Hair purchase on ulta.com or in store [expired Nov 15, 2013 and N/A in Canada]

5) Zoya Nail Polish in "ZP679 Neve"
Part of the Fall 2013 CASHMERES & SATINS Collection, these shades are created to work together with this season's most stylish runway designs and luxurious fabric blends. These ultra long-wearing, glossy nail lacquers by Zoya are BIG5FREE - free of toluene, camphor, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin and dibutyl phthalate (DBP).

ipsy members either got this color Neve (sapphire blue metallic), Giovanna (emerald green metallic) or Mason (red violet metallic).
Neve is described as a sapphire blue and if you look closely, you will see fine green and red glitters. i really wish i could capture that on camera since it is really pretty. i find that my camera also captures more of the blue in the polish while it is actually slightly more purple.
 i apologize for the bad swatch! it is actually more purple than this!
i love the formula of Zoya polishes - they are 5 free and are rather easy to remove - no staining! the polish lasted me long enough before i got bored with the color. it did start chipping within 3-4 days.

size: 15 mL (full size!)
retail value: $8
promotion: buy 2 nail polishes, get 1 free and a free Zoya Remove + at zoya.com [expired Nov 10, 2013 and N/A in Canada]

- - -

so here's the entire ipsy bag! ipsy always delivers in terms of variety... which can mean value for some. personally, i still enjoy ipsy. i need to make sure that i start doing those reviews on ipsy so that the ipsymatch could be more accurate.
thanks for reading!
have you started attending holiday parties / or started holiday shopping yet?

Thursday, November 07, 2013

TOPBOX: October 2013 [regular]

LET'S GET DOWN TO BUSINESS
...
 to defeat the Huns!

actually, i determined the problem behind my inability to post anything in October.

it's because i'm lazy/busy and since i was already so behind in posting about my boxes, i was not motivated to put them up since no one was going to read them... but i will still put them up. just at a later date when i am caught up.
for now, i will post about boxes i just got - which means i will start digging through the pile of unopened boxes in the corner of my room.

yippee - blogging and not wasting products! i had almost forgotten the feeling of excitement of opening boxes and trying out new products...

here i go!

Topbox! yes, almost a month old but i am making my way through October. i can do this!

October's Topbox (regular) was the Murale (Shopppers Drug Mart) box. speaking of SDM, i misplaced my Optimum card for like 3 months and i was completely at lost without it. i felt like i was missing out on a gazillion points but i would not give up on it. i'd have terrible thoughts about some stranger finding it and using up all my points! agh!! the horror!
but the story has a happy ending! apparently i threw it in a box of receipts i was supposed to go through months ago but of course, i did not get to that.

so.... Murale! products in this box include:
1) Darphin Predermine Densifying Anti-Wrinkle (Anti-Wrinkly) Cream for Normal Skin - this is quite the fancy packaging. everything about this makes me think of something my grandma used to have on her vanity table - the lid, the other lid, the color, the scent... the texture feels light to the touch but once you smooth it on your face, it feels slightly heavier. this product comes in two forms - for normal or for dry skin.
size: 15 mL
retail value: $200 (50 mL) - ay, caramba! i will treasure this $60 sample... 

2) Erno Laszlo Transphuse Eye Refiner - this tiny sample is another anti-aging product but targeted for your eyes. this white cream smells a little funny to me... sort of like beer or something. see below 3) for a swatch of the product.
size: 2 mL
retail value: $120 (15 mL)  - looks like this box is filled with luxury items. this sample alone is worth $16

3) Rivoli Le Visage Luminous Serum - the serum is more like a very liquid-y form of a cream to me than a serum. most serums i have are clear and feels sort of thick. this one is white and runny. it has a light scent. i can't quite comment on much else since i've used it twice and the second time, i already had to squeeze the tube with my entire hand.
size: 3 mL
retail value: $220 (50 mL) - this $13 sample barely lasted me 2 uses...

4) Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Baby Doll Mascara - there are different versions of this mascara to achieve different lash looks. this Baby Doll one is particularly great for a wide-eye look with long and separate lashes. the mascara comes in 4 different colors including a black, brown, blue and purple.
size: 2 mL
retail value: $36 (5 mL) ... $14.40 sample!

so looks like the trend with this Murale box is higher-end items... probably geared towards middle-aged women with all the anti-aging items as well as the fact that they are more likely to be able to afford such price tags.
in my opinion, this box was just alright. with my current financial position, i am not looking to spend $200 on a cream just yet... but i will gladly use up my sample.
i am a tad jealous of those that got the Elizabeth Arden lipstick sample... i really need to replace my missing lip brush... and a mini one? that would come in so handy!

other Topboxes that i was debating about for the month of October included the Dermalogica box or the Cosmetics Magazine Topbox (for an additional $5) - i was tempted mainly because of the Bio Oil but really, i could actually go out and buy it... i guess.

thanks for reading!!
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