The Happenings: December 2015

How are you all doing?  This year has been non-stop runaway crazy busy for me and I’m ready for a vacation!  Haha, who am I kidding, it’s only February.  *sigh* I still have to catch up with all the stuff from December–I’m falling behind, as you can clearly see.

I can’t lie and say it hasn’t all been fun.  Let’s focus on the fun stuff!  First off, I went to Korea for the first time.  It was also the first time I experienced being ‘chilled to the bone.’  The funny but actually kind of sad story is that another team went out before us (to the same place) and they emailed back and said, ‘Hey!  The weather is perfect!  You don’t need your thermals, just light layering pieces will do.”  So that’s what we packed!  The first day it was exactly as described, the second day was pretty chilly…and on the third day, it snowed.  The fourth day, I had to buy a fur-lined hooded snowboarding jacket, and the fifth day, I…was done so we went home.  Being cold in Korea has it’s perks though–you can eat their extremely spicy (yet also extremely flavorful) all day long and your body will thank you for it!  Everything was red and delicious, I loved it.

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February 2016 Birchbox: What’s the Occasion?

Birchbox Themes have been getting longer and longer over the years!  I remember when they were one worders.  Like…Idk.  ‘Glamour’ or something like that.  (Not that I’m complaining–this is fun!)

February’s sample choice pick for me was a mask from REN: the Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask.  I’ve gotten a few REN products from BB and they are amazing–I absolutely love them.  I’m kind of regretting my choice because I just got another Glycol related item from BeautyDNA (A face peel).

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But anyway, this month I got:

  • L’Oreal Professional Mythic Oil Nourishing Masque
  • Oscar de la Renta Flor Eau de Parfum
  • Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask
  • POP Beauty Matte Velvet Lipstix
  • Marcelle New Age 8-in-1 Power Serum

Interesting!  Lots of mask types of products this month, and a serum too.  My box seems like it’s centered mostly towards a ‘beauty prep’ kind of thing vs. makeup techniques, as the only item of makeup that I received was the POP Beauty Lipstix.  (This description is probably more applicable to the curated box)  Of those 3 shades, I don’t think I have a preference for the one that BB sends me!  I’d be extremely happy with either of them.  If you can’t tell from the itty bitty screenshot, the colors are Cozy Crimson (a deep magenta), Satin Rose (a ballet-slipper nude), and Parisian Pink (a classic bubblegum pink).  Maybe I’d go for Parisian Pink because gut instinct would be to go for Satin Rose.  Which is hilarious to me!  I just read an article about how the average woman has like 10-12 sticks/shades of lipstick in her collection but ALWAYS reaches for the pinky-beige shade.  Which is exactly described as ‘ballet-slipper nude.’

What’d you guys get this month?  I’m pleased!  I’m hoping the BB box itself has the pattern that’s on the product reveal page–I think it’s so cute.  Maybe I’ll reuse the box and put a little Valentine’s gift in it.  For B or for Zuko, who knows?  ;]

 

Target Beauty Box: Renewal, January 2016

To celebrate the New Year (Happy 2016 YAY!), Target released 2 Beauty Boxes for January: Renewal and Refresh.  I couldn’t help it, I ordered both and so far, I’ve only received Renewal.  This box cost $7 with 5% off and free shipping if you’re a Target Red Card member.  I wish this box was a monthly subscription but it seems to be one-time purchases…AND lately, they’ve been offering one (sometimes two of we’re lucky) beauty box every month so… c’mon Target, help a girl out!

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Here’s what’s in the box:

  • Attitude 2-in-1 Shampoo/Body Wash – Sample packet.  Attitude sounds like a very conscious brand!
  • Attitude Volume and Shine Shampoo – Sample packet.  Carcinogen-free and hypoallergenic.  Both Attitude products are vegan and not tested on animals.
  • Caress Love Forever Body Wash – Features fragrance release pearls.  Everytime you touch your skin, a burst of perfume will be released, all day long.
  • Laneige BB Cushion Sampler – Comes with a puff and 3 shades to swatch.  I’m impressed!!!  If you look closely at the packet, it seems like Laneige is part of the AmorePacific brand.
  • Degree Women Fresh Energy Dry Spray – FULL SIZE.  I’m not a big fan of using this product by itself but I do like to spray this over regular stick deodorant if I’m moving a lot.  Especially great for yoga!
  • Scrunchi No Slip Grip Braided Headwrap – Mine came in a magenta color. The fit was a bit too loose but it was still comfortable.  I’ll also use this for yoga.
  • Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer – I’m torn on these!  They REALLY moisturize your skin but for me (and my climate), it’s kind of thick and heavy.  If I put it on sparingly, it’ll be okay for Hawaii Winter/Spring but definitely not for Summer and Fall.  I do like the scent though.
  • Revlon Ultimate All-in-One Mascara – FULL SIZE.  This mascara promises it all!  I don’t recall the last time I used a Revlon mascara (I typically reach for Maybelline) so I’m really interested to try this out. I feel like most Target beauty boxes include at least 1 full-size mascara so I always feel like I get my money’s worth!
  • Hado Labo Tokyo Anti-Aging Facial Mask – FULL SIZE (1 mask).  This product is described as a bottle of serum in a mask form–I’m really excited!  This is another brand that I didn’t know that Target carries.  (I wonder now, is this an online exclusive?)  This is a bit heavier but it moisturizes like nobody’s business.  For warmer climates, this is a GREAT product to use after a day at the beach.  The serum is heavenly.

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My favorite item in this box is definitely the Laneige BB Cushion.  I tend to shy away from BB Cushions because I normally only see them with Korean brands such as FaceShop, Nature Republic, and Etude House and the skin shades are really really light.  I’m so glad the Laneige product comes in darker colors!  I’ve never seen it in my local Target–I wonder if it’s in the same section as their Boots No.7 products, or perhaps in the more natural section near the Pacifica and Burts Bee stuff.  I’ll have to take a better look.

What do you guys think?  I’m even more excited to get the next Beauty Box in the mail!

Rachel Zoe, Box of Style: Winter 2015

Just now, I realized that I didn’t do reviews of my Summer or Fall Rachel Zoe boxes.  I don’t know why–Summer was AMAZING (Hero item: White Cambridge Leather Bag) and Fall was so fun (Hero item: Cluse watch with interchangeable leather wristbands).

Let’s begin with the surprise!  I didn’t know this would be included in the Winter box–it was sent out to annual subscribers (it’s actually the best deal, you save a little).  This origami style pouch is so cute and it holds a LOT of stuff.  It’s perfect for when I travel–I’ve already stuffed all of my skincare related travel items in it and it fits!  My skin gets so dry when I fly, I have to moisturize constantly or I’ll get flaky skin.

On to the hero item!  I see Alexis Bittar pieces everywhere but I don’t own any of his pieces, this is a first for me.  I was a bit worried it would be a little too bulky but this ring is REALLY comfortable.  I was able to adjust the ring so that it fits great (the back is open and you can gently bend the sides to get the size that’s best for your fingers)

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Bespoke Box Review: The Weekender

Bespoke Box is a Men’s Lifestyle monthly subscription that sends out all sorts of neat things–organized into really cool collections.  Every month, there’s a new set of about 3 collections (which may or may not include a rerelease from a previous month).  This review is for their most popular collection, the Weekender.

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After confirming my color pick (I was torn between a gray and an olive but ultimately, I ended up going with the gray.  Slight regret *sigh*), my box arrived pretty quickly.  I was surprised because it was HEAVY.

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Box extras!  A playing card deck from Miller Lite, a sample pack of these Hydration Vitamins from a brand called Brode, and a few towelettes for guys.  I liked that all of the extras were travel related and I’m really curious about the Brode pills.  I absolutely hate that sickly, dried out feeling of being on a plane for too long–I should give it a try on my next work trip.

Onto the bag itself–it’s beautiful!

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The body of the bag is made of a thick, heavy duty canvas.  The bag is secured by two leather straps with buckles and it’s got a leather strap and a longer, nylon one to sling it over your shoulder.

The reason why this bag is so HEAVY is because of this metal framing at the very top.  Imagine that it opens like a doctor’s bag.  This helps the bag keep it’s structure nicely but it’s a bit cumbersome (I’ve already banged myself in the knee and shin with this) and I’m not sure it’s worth the extra weight.  It also makes the bag hard to compress or travel with if you have to squish it into a tight space.  For my personal usage, this bag is best suited for small getaways (yay for staycations) and perhaps interisland travel.  I’m also in love with the fact that it’s so versatile–both myself and B could easily use this and we’d both be happy (or perhaps I’d be happy for both of us).

Overall, I’m pretty pleased with this box!  The quality is amazing and I love the customization that Bespoke Box offers.  If you’re interested in subscribing, I’d wait until Groupon is offering a sale.  I think after the discount and the coupon, I got this box for under $20!  Woohoo, deals!