Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ipsy/ Glam Bag May 2013!

It's that time again! My favorite beauty subscription box (or bag in this case!) IPSY arrived! Much later than usual, but it's finally here! Luckily for me, everything came in one piece. I heard through the Ipsy forums that many subscribers had issues with many of their items arriving damaged, so I was happy to know that everything got here safe and sound. I have to say, this might be the BEST bag we've ever received from Ipsy. Full sized products GALORE, not to mention a value of around $50 for the whole sh-bang. Spending $10 on $50 worth of items is a steal, and I am more pleased each month with the selections I get from Ipsy. If you're not subscribed yet, you SHOULD be!! Let's get down to business and take a look at what I got this month!

Another thing to note before I review the items I received, was that for the first time in their short history, Ipsy used what they call "Ipsy Match." When you sign up for the subscription, Their website asks you a few simple questions about your beauty preferences, and May's bag was the first one to be correlated to your choices from the Ipsy survey. Some ladies were not thrilled with their choices and did not believe that it correlated to their surveys, however I feel that mine did a great job! I will say that I think When it comes to gloss/polish colors and perfume scents etc, I think those are completely random, and some ladies are assuming that they're customized down to the shades and scents. That would be amazing if that were the case, but unfortunately when you have such a large customer base it's not something they'd be able to do feasibly. I think for what they were able to do, this is much more my speed than when Birchbox claimed to do the same. I feel like Birchbox ignored everything I ever answered on my survey and just sent me whatever they felt like. But enough of the rambling, let's get to the goodies!

1. Juice Beauty Lip Gloss in "Fig"
I wanted to mention this one first, as I was disappointed upon opening the bag. There were Mirabella lipsticks that some ladies were receiving that I was much more excited to get. However I pulled out this lipgloss. The immediate pro was that it is a full size product. I wasn't too into the color, as in the tube it looks a bit like a pale orange coppery-bronze, but I thought I'd give it a shot anyway. WOW am I glad I received this! Not only does it have a light, fruity scent (think creamsicle!), but it goes on SO smoothly and isn't sticky at ALL. It glides on and makes my lips shimmer without a ton of glitter. The color is not at all what it appears to be, and it's more of a "natural" color on the lips. More like a tinted gloss that matches my natural lip color. This was the biggest surprise in my bag and I was thrilled with it. I've used it every day since!\

2. Pacifica Roll-On Perfume in "Tahitian Gardenia"
 Another one I was a bit unsure of.  This is also a full sized product, and I absolutely love this brand as everything is natural and cruelty free. Not to mention everything I have ever sampled from them smells absolutely incredible. However the options this month from Ipsy were a Vanilla scent (which I do not usually like) and this Gardenia scent, which I was even more iffy about. Gardenia tends to have a VERY strong floral scent and it's a very "love it or hate it" kind of scent. I was eager to try this one however, and I was yet again pleasantly surprised! The description of this scent says "Gardenia, Jasmine, Orange Flowers and notes of Tea Leaves" and that is EXACTLY what you smell and in that order! First you roll on the perfume and can immediately smell the Gardenia. It's a loud floral scent that immediately begins to morph into the Jasmine scent, which is a lot lighter of a floral. As it dries, it suddenly changes into a citrus tea-like scent which is absolutely delightful. I'm not big on florals but I absolutely love this scent and the orange-y dry down it has. So thrilled that I got this!

3. Zoya Polish in "Gie Gie"
If you like nail polish, I have a feeling you know and love Zoya already. This is one of the polishes from their Spring line, and it might have been the ONLY one I didn't want. I love pink, but I do not like wearing pink, especially on my nails. This color is a bit too "It's a Girl" for me. Very "baby pink" and had a bit of glitter in it as well. While I was thrilled that Ipsy included a full sized Zoya polish, I wasn't thrilled with the color I received. I did end up giving it away, but that doesn't take away from the fact that it was a great product to have in the bag. Simply the luck of the draw that gave me the wrong color.

4. Macadamia Hair Oil
This is a product I have used many times before and can truly not say enough wonderful things about. This stuff works 100 times better than Moroccan Oil and is half the price!! This is a full-sized bottle, however they do offer larger sizes. This small bottle will last at lest 3-4 months of daily use. Best way to use it in my opinion is to run it through towel-dried hair, focusing on the ends. It really does smooth the hair and any frizz and/or split ends you might have disappear. The smell is addicting and I was thrilled to receive it in my Ipsy bag!

5. Yaby Concealer
This, believe it or not, is a full-sized product. It was the one I was probably the least excited about. I was happy with Ipsy for including it, as it's something you don't get too often from a beauty subscription, and I was also lucky enough to receive a color that matches my skin tone nicely. It's a small concealer that is supposed to go into a magnetic palette. (Ipsy sent us a small Glam RX palette a couple months ago) I used it the day after I received the bag and while I think it's a creamy, well-covering concealer, I don't think it's anything too special. It's also surprisingly tiny for a full-sized product. It's about the size of a nickel. Overall it was the least thrilling item in the bag.

I'd say that Ipsy hit this month out of the park. I am REALLY excited to see what they have in store of June. It looks like a June sneak peek already popped up on their facebook page and it appears to be NYX blushes! Already kicking off June with a bang! If you're interested in a Beauty Subscription you truly cannot beat the value of Ipsy. At $10 a month, you always get excellent samples AND an adorable cosmetic bag. Ipsy definitely cannot be beat at their price point.

If you're interested in signing up for Ipsy, please consider using my referral link here: Sign Up for Ipsy!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Vitacost Be Well Box May 2013

A new month means new sample boxes, and like last month, vitacost sent me some goodies!

I had never really heard of vitacost before until a friend told me about their Be Boxes. As I said last month, I really love the fact that they have lots of different choices to fit your style. Since vitacost IS a vitamin/healthy/organic food etc type website, you will be receiving those kinds of items in your boxes. The great thing is there is a box for everyone. They are $13.99 with free shipping, and they are most certainly worth it! If you'd like to see what was in their past Be Boxes, and also see the variety of boxes they have, Click Here!

Now for the box I received!
I recently made an order from VitaCost which had 6-7 supplements and vitamins, as I am getting really into them lately! I had never taken them before, and I feel so much better since I started! I have to say as a side note, I checked walmart, ebay, name it. VitaCost had the lowest prices on the vitamins and supplements I needed. Glad to know that, and glad to have found their site!

Anyway, I received the box and I assumed it was my vitamin/supplements order, but when I opened up the box, to my surprise it was my Be Well box! Let's take a look at what was inside, shall we?

Pictured here is the Be Well box I received, as well as the Protein shake sample. Also another tip for all of you: If you're shopping the Vitacost website, be sure to search 'samples' and add two to your cart. You will not be charged for them and it's a great way to try a few new things with each order!

1. Nautral Calm Magnesium Drink Powder Full Size $25 
 Not a whole lot to say about this, other than it smells like delicious cherries, and it's a supplement that is known to make you more...ahem..."regular." It is also anti-stress, which is nice.

2. FoodScience of Vermont Immuno-DMG Chewable Tablets Full Size $32
These big ol' tablets are chewable and taste like a creamsicle-flavored sweet tart!Yum! They are simply a supplement that is specifically created to support immune system function. Probably a great product to have around the winter time when you're battling the cold and flu.

3. Vitacost Calcium Soft Chews Full Size $8
These are the Vitacost brand version of a chocolate calcium soft-chew. They are delicious, of course. If you don't like taking tons of vitamins and supplements every day then these are a great option for you. They're also a great thing for everyone over the age of 40 to be taking because calcium is very important as we age!

4. Raw Revolution Organic Live Food Bar Full Size 12-pack $15
This was a chocolate coconut flavor and there wasn't much information on the product packaging as to why I should be eating it. After looking at a few of the other flavors online, I'm assuming it's yet another weird way to get people to eat their supplements and vitamins. I don't really like gimmicky things like this, as I prefer to take my V's and S's in pill form. My roommate ate this one and said it was very bland-tasting and tossed it out. Not sure I can recommend it but glad that it was included so I could at least give it a try!

5. MegaFood "Blood Builder" Full Size $14 
This was the first thing in my box that I was SUPER excited for. I love new supplements and this one is something I don't have and I haven't seen before. These boast that they are completely vegan, natural, GMO free, you name it. They claim that the body cannot tell that this supplement isn't actual food, therefore it absorbs into your body the same way vitamins would when eating. While I don't know if this is true, I still enjoy the idea of these supplements which help to maintain healthy iron levels in the blood. Many women lose iron when they have their menstrual cycles, so this is a great supplement to make sure you replenish!
6. AdvaCal Calcium and Vitamin D3 Full Size $28
This was the most valuable item in the box, and another one I was excited about trying. This is a full size bottle of your basic calcium supplement, with included Vitamin D so you can get both in one shot. These are smaller-sized pills which are good for those who have a hard time swallowing larger capsules. A great value!
7. Emergen-C Vitamin C Fizzy Drink Mix Full Size $9
This brand seems to sneak it's way into almost every single sample or subscription box I have ever received. Not to mention I am also trying them/reviewing them for the website Smiley360, so I should expect another big envelope full of these foil packets. All in all, they tasted alright. Nothing special and a little bit alka-seltzer-y, but if you need a quick dose of Vitamin C or something to boost your immune system and you feel like you need to drink it...then I suppose this is a good choice for you, lol. I'd rather just eat an orange, personally!
All in all, the value of this box was about $48 for the sizes that I received. Paying $13.99 for these boxes is very much worth it. Many people will tell you that their boxes are a $70 value. But be careful to note that they are UP TO a $70 value. Still, paying $14 for $50 worth of new health items is definitely worth it if you're pretty new to the vitamin and supplement world. Not into V's and S's? Check out their diet box or their beauty box (which sells out SUPER fast so keep checking back with them)

Very happy to have a great relationship with Vitacost and have been thrilled with their customer service, shipping times, and products overall!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ivory 2-IN-1 Hair and Body Wash

Influenster finally decided I was worthy enough to be a part of a new campaign for Ivory!
If you don't know what Influenster is, a very quick rundown: You join the site, write reviews and unlock badges that are relevant to your life, and they choose you to test and review new products!

I was a very active member in the community for a solid year, and then out of nowhere...NOTHING. I was very disheartened but continued to be a member, and they surprised me with an opportunity to try a new product from Ivory soap.

This particular product is a 2-IN-1. Most of us know these kinds of a products as a shampoo/conditioner duo, but in this case, it's almost a 3-IN-1, as it's used not only as a shampoo, but as a conditioner AND a body wash. This seems a bit gimmicky, but I'm always game for trying new bath products!

I received my package and pulled out a HUGE (24oz) bottle of the product. It also told me I was supposed to receive coupons to give out to friends and family, although unfortunately I didn't receive any.

The scent of the product is very basic, but nice. It's a "shower fresh" kind of scent. Very light and clean, and could definitely be used by anyone. There's no masculine scent or floral-y feminine scent to it, which is nice. I really like that it comes in such a large bottle, which it should, considering you're supposed to use it for 3 different things.

Using the product was pretty simple. I shampooed my hair with it first and it suds up well and seems to clean quite nicely. I added a bit more into my hands and left it in as a sort of conditioner to see how well it would work. While I let that sit, I used the product as a body wash, which left my body feeling quite clean! After rinsing my hair and body and getting out of the shower, I attempted to brush my hair a bit.

While I know it's bad to brush my hair wet, I HAVE to do it, or I'll end up with a knotted mess. I can say that this product did NOTHING to help in that department. My hair felt cleaned, but didn't feel conditioned at all.

I was impressed at how well it cleaned my hair and my body and didn't make me break out or leave a squeaky residue, which was very nice. Overall this product does an amazing job of shampooing/body washing and I would definitely repurchase it for my fiance. He's a "get in, get out" kind of guy in the shower, and a product like this is absolutely perfect for him.

I would recommend this product to people who are traveling or on vacation, and just want one product to take with them, or anyone who just likes something quick to use when you're in a rush. If your hair doesn't need much conditioning, this is the perfect choice. Even if you want to consolidate your shampoo and body wash, this is a great option to have along with a conditioner.

All in all, it's a quality product that does what it says for the most part. It smells lovely, has a lot of product for a small price, and is the perfect match for a "quick shower."