UNBOXING: Glossybox July 2013 – Seaside Splash

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We got this box free with our gorgeous September 2014 Karen Millen Glossybox. Using the code LUCKYDIP, Glossybox were offering a free past box with minimum 3 month subscriptions.

This is a sun/holiday themed box.  Upon opening, we were pretty excited as this box is stunning. With the matching tissue and ribbon, Glossybox really excel with their presentation.

This is an unboxing, we’ll list the items and come back and review them later 🙂

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INECTO: Pure Coconut Refreshing Dry Shampoo, 150ml
Value: £2.49
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“Looking for a quick pick-me-up on your way from the beach to the bar? Inecto’s Coconut Dry Shampoo instantly refreshes hair between washes, adding body and texture and – most importantly – leaving your hair smelling irresistably fresh and exotic”

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS: Blah. The inevitable dry shampoo that comes with summer-themed boxes. Whilst this will be used, this is terribly un-exciting. The irony is that a sample-size would be more useful than the full-size product.


ALTERNA HAIRCARE: Bamboo Style Boho Waves Tousled Texture Mist, 25ml
Value: £4.60
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“Your perfect “Seaside Splash” summer companion! FOrget perfectly primed hair, and instead opt for effortlessly tousled, “just-back-from-the-beach” waves with this weightless mist. Adds texture, volume and healthy shine to all hair types.

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS: We look forward to trying this as we love beach and salt sprays, and this is a handy purse size – will be interesting to see how this performs for the money.


CIATÉ: Paint Pot, 13.5ml
Value: £9.50 (full size product)
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“We’re excited to feature one of our all-time favourite nail brands, Ciaté. WIth a range of on-trend summer shades, you’ll be hitting the beach in style. Ciaté‘s wide range of amazingly pigmented and long=lasting shades guarantees a flawless, even finish every tme. The cherry on top? We can’t get enough of the iconic satin bow gracing each beautifully designed bottle.”

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS: Wut? Who wrote this copy? Glossybox cannot get enough of the ribbon on the bottle?!! Well we do actually love Ciaté, but this metallic orange-red-coral colour is pretty hideous.


COOLA ORGANIC: Mineral Face SPF20 Unscented, 7ml
Value: £0.92
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“We love this tough but gentle multi-tasker. Coola Organic’s Suncare Collection is hypoallergenic, free of parabens and packed with antioxidants. It provides complete UVA/UVB protection and fights free radicals, while soothing, toning and minimizing pores. Organic Acai Oil delivers powerful anti-ageing benefits, while organice Evening Primrose And Linseed Oils reduce inflammation and balance moisture. We’ve truly fallen for this suncare hero.”

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS:  Hard to get excited about this one – this sample is too small to really test a sunscreen. A waste of space, even if the product might be good.


ILA SPA: Face Oil for Glowing Radiance, 1.75ml
Value: £1.50

“Winner of Harper’s Bazaar Hot 100, ila’s Face Oil for Glowing Radiance has become a cult product worldwide and has been named ‘a little miracle’ by celebrity make-up artists. It’s easy to see why!” Argan oil and rosehip seed oil are high in anti-oxidants, repairing skin cells while combatting premature ageing. You will soon notice a healthy glow to your face with visibly improved texture and radiance.”

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS: This is a product we’re pretty happy to try to see how it compares to Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery and the like. However, the sample is very tiny!


 

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OVERALL VERDICT: Whilst we absolutely LOVE the design of this box, we would have been sorely disappointed if we had paid any money for it. Whilst the selection of the products is pretty good, the two premium products being absolutely tiny samples (one being useless) really makes the box redundant. We were unlucky with the nailpolish colour, but this is a prime example of why we left Glossybox in the first place. We got this free with the Sept 2014 Karen Millen box – which is a million times better, hopefully a sign of good things yet to come.

Box price: Free with the Luckydip promotion (usually £9.50 on a 3-month subscription + £3.75 shipping)
Total value: £17.97

Note: We received this Glossybox free as part of a promotion

Interested in trying out Glossybox UK? Click this link or the banner below.

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UNBOXING: Birchbox August 2014 – Away We Go!…the one with a mini-book

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This month’s theme was Away We Go!…we tend to find summer-themed boxes an excuse to skimp on luxe products and this Birchbox was sadly no exception. A slim offering from Birchbox…

Instead of the usual drawstring liner, this month’s offering came in a handy zip lock pouch.

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NUMBER 4: Super Comb & Protect, 30ml
Value: £3.00

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“A leave-in conditioning spray to detangle and protect against heat and sun damage.”

BT INITIAL OPINION: Useful purse-sized spray. That’s about all we can say about this. Not particularly exciting.


VASANTI: Brightenup! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator, 20ml (it says grams, but I think this is a typo)
Value: £4.34

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“A multi-action exfoliator to ensure a renewed, refreshed complexion.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – Also a useful but not particularly exciting item.


 

NUDE: Progenius Omega Treatment Oil, 5ml
Value: £9.66

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“This nourishing oil is rich in omegas 3, 6, 7 and 9 for hydrated, smooth skin.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – The one item that piques our interest in this box. For a luxe product, the sample packaging feels very cheap, but we look forward to giving this a try and seeing how it performs against other recovering/miracle oil treatments.


SUPERGOOP! Daily Correct SPF35 CC Cream, 3ml x 2
Value: £4.09

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“A natural shade-adjusting CC cream with SPF to smooth fine lines and even out skin tones.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – These samples are so tiny, they had to include two! We like BB/CC creams, so don’t mind trying more out, but even with two tubes, it’s a small sample.


CHELLA: Highlighter Pencil
Value: £15.95

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“Highlight the brow bone, cheekbones and inner corners of eye with this chunky pencil.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – We’ve already given this one a quick whirl. We’ll trial it more extensively and report back, but initial try was very disappointing.  We like the idea of this product, but its performance was poor akin to a product from the 80s.


LIFESTYLE EXTRA:
“Chapter One of this spellbinding and romantic novel, which spans 1950s London and present day NYC.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – we don’t mind this being included in the box, but it shouldn’t be in the place of a lifestyle extra as in effect, it is just advertising. If it were a complete short story or novella, then this could be considered an extra…


 

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OVERALL VERDICT:

This is the worst box we’ve ever had from Birchbox! A combination of a poor selection of products, tiny samples and a poor lifestyle item makes for a disappointing box. They did at least source unusual brands. We have serious reservations about the value of the Chella pencil being £15.95 – we wouldn’t even shell out £2.00 for it. Without this, the box seems pretty poor value.  The inclusion of a book sample as the lifestyle sample in addition to such a poor offering added insult to injury. No advertising dressed up as free gifts please Birchbox!

Box price: £10.00 plus £2.95 shipping (rolling month by month subscription) – although we got this on a discount offer
Total value: £37.04

Note: We paid for this Birchbox with our own hard-earnt pennies

Like the look of Birchbox? Subscribe at www.birchbox.co.uk and you’ll get £5 worth of points! You’re welcome 😉

UNBOXING: You Beauty Discovery August 2014 – Summer Essentials

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The theme of this box was Summer Essentials.

The selection varied wildly in value this month. We were lucky enough to get the premium products we wanted which was lucky as they were the only two we would have been really happy with. Hopefully YBD will improve the options in future.

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EUCERIN: Sun Mattifying Face Fluid SPF50, 50ml
Value: £15.00 (full size product)
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“A sun fluid for the face that has a three-dimensional protection system: It provides high UVA protection, UVB protection and biological cell protection which strengthens skin’s own cell protection and DNA repair mechanisms. The light fluid is suitable for combination to oily skin, and provides a non-shiny and non-sticky feeling, leaving a mattifying effect on the skin. Also suitable for sun sensitive skin.”

BT INITIAL THOUGHTS: We’re interested to see how this performs and how it looks/feels on the skin. We’re not entirely sure why you would want this above any other skincare product with high SPF or a normal sunscreen.

THE BEAUTIFUL TRUTH (review): This seems both a good product undergoing identity crisis…after using it during a period of 3 weeks alongside a normal sunscreen on our bodies and with and without makeup, we are not really sold on it. Mainly because we are not sure when/why to use it or therefore why anyone would buy it. Maybe we are missing something?. It is not without its merits – it is not oily and feels great on the skin (compared to an ordinary sunscreen). You can apply makeup pretty well on top of it, but it does feel heavier than a lotion with SPF and with continued use, made our combination skin slightly more oily. If it were waterproof, then we’d totally understand the benefit as it would be perfect for the beach, but as it is, we’re not sure why you’d use it in place of a high SPF BB cream or moisturiser, especially at the price. £15 for a relatively small bottle (which is plenty enough for a 2 week holiday)? we’d rather buy some Clarins 🙂

Score: 3/5…mainly because we can’t figure out why you’d buy it


 

GAZELLI: Triple Youth with White Oil Duo, 10ml (5ml x 2)
Value: £16.00
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“Gazelli’s Luxury Discovery Set is the perfect one-week introduction to the Triple Youth Range, and includes an Ultimate Firming Serum and Intensive Age-Repair Cream to give your skin the ultimate rejuvenation.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – This has to be our first beauty product made in Azerbaijan! Just on this basis and the product’s luxe feel, we are excited to try this 🙂


 

EXTRA TREATS:

JIMMY CHOO: Eau de parfum and MAN Eau de toilette (2ml x 2)
Value: £3.59 (£1.92 + £1.67)
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“Luxury in a bottle.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – We’re always happy to receive mini-sprays as these are useful when travelling and much better than tiny one-use samples. We like the inclusion of both the men and women’s variants. Nice touch 🙂


 

4-way Nail Buffer
Value: Unknown, £2 estimate
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“On-the-go nail perfection.”

BT INITIAL OPINION – Some people got a lipstick instead of the nail buffer. As it’s just an added extra, we’re pretty happy with this nail buffer as it will get used, even if it is a bit bulky.


 

FACED 3-LURONICS: Instant Effect Cream Serum, 2ml
Value: £1.66
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“Visibly reduced wrinkles and expression lines”

BT INITIAL OPINION – What a crazy named company! This product might be good, but doubt we’ll be wowed by this little sachet. Still, a nice extra.


 

OTHER OPTIONS:
Peggy Sage: Nail Polish (Summer & Nude Collections)
Rose & Co: Cherry Kiss Lip Balm
Daniel Sandler: Long Lasting Waterproof Eye Liner (Aqua)
Marsk: Gold Eyeshadow “Rich List”
Louise Galvin: Sacred Locks Treatment Masque
Justbe: Hydrating Serum

OVERALL VERDICT:

We think if we hadn’t got the items we’d really wanted, we would have been slightly disappointed with YBD this month. Not because it doesn’t deliver value for money, it always does – but because we’ve been so spoilt in previous months that we’re used to having a hard time making a decision between lots of fabulous products. As we managed to get the Eucerin and Gazelli, our luck was in this week…together with the 4 extras! The summer theme was tenuous, but we loved our box regardless. We would never have tried products like the mattifying sunscreen or potions from Azerbaijan without this service and YBD remains our favourite subscription beauty box.

Box price: £6.95 inc shipping
Total value: £38.25

Note: We paid for this You Beauty Discovery Box with our own hard-earnt pennies

Like the look of You Beauty Discovery? Sign up here http://www.youbeautydiscovery.co.uk