winter fabfitfun unboxing

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This was my very first ever FabFitFun box. I received the Winter box this week, after signing up in December. And I have to say: I am in LOVE! I already receive Birchbox, as you’ve probably seen in my previous unboxings, but this is very different and I think I love it more. I’m not considering unsubbing from Birchbox, because I like getting things monthly. The FabFitFun box unfortunately only comes 4x a year. So, for now, I’ll just be enjoying..both! Here’s what I got in my Winter FabFitFun box…

  • Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel Sensitive: I received a tiny jar of this in my Birchbox and used every last drop. So I was really excited to get a full size! I used it already and I love the way my skin feels after. Retail: $39
  • Half United Fighting Hunger Necklace: This necklace is super cute, it’s shaped like a bullet shell/casing/whatever (I’m uneducated in bullet terminology, sorry). Each necklace donates 7 meals to those who are fighting hunger across the world, too, so I love that! Retail: $34
  • Zumba 60 min DVD “Max” & $25 Gift Card: I’m SO excited about this DVD! I am getting really tired of running as my cardio, and so I’m pumped to have a fun cardio alternative. I burned __ calories in 60 mins! I’ve also already used my $25 gift card. You get free shipping, so I bought a $22 adorable top. Score! Retail: $55
  • Passport to Beauty Tibetan Goji Berry Intense Anti-aging Eye Serum with Retinol: This is a ginormous thing of eye cream, and I have a feeling it’s going to last me forever! I have tons to try out (way too many samples, remember?) and so it may take me some time to get around to this one.
  • Daniel Stone COCO Candle: I’m a candle FIEND. This smells AMAZING. It’s made of coconut oil or something or other but I would love it either way. It’s literally been lit the entire time since I opened this box. Retail: $42
  • yourMinerals Assorted EyeShadow Duo: These are loose powder eyeshadows, and I like the colors. They’re not my most favorite, but I think they’re nice and light and wintery, and I could get away with wearing them to work. So that’s nice! Retail: $44
  • Salted — 3 months of Free Membership: I didn’t know what Salted was before this box, but it’s essentially Netflix + Cooking for Dummies. Hello, I’m a cooking dummie! So this is going to be super helpful for me. I’ve already watched a couple of short clips, and I’ve already learned a lot. I can’t wait to keep learning and expand my skills throughout the next three months!! Retail: $29.97
  • Lather AHA Hand Creme with Evening Primrose: This is a giant. Tub. Of wonderful amazing smelling hand cream. I can’t stop using it! Can’t stop won’t stop! It’s going to last me FOREVER. Retail: $30 (they should charge more for this)
  • $30 Fashion Project Gift Card with Free Shipping: This is one of the few things I wasn’t super pumped about, mainly because when I went to the website, most everything was over $30. Retail: $18 (I don’t get the value here but alright.)
  • Organic Valley Organic Balance Milk Protein Shake: I love protein! It’s also lactose free. Retail: $2.99
  • Justin’s Classic Almond Butter: I already knew I loved this. Thanks for the to-go pack! Retail: $0.63
  • Special K Snack Bar: I love snackies! I love Special K! Retail: not included in total

This entire box, which you can get for $49, is worth a total of $383.59 — amazing! I was skeptical when I signed up, but I have to admit, I’m in love! If you’re interested in signing up, click here, and use the promo code FALL5 for $5 off and free shipping!

Are you subscribed to the FabFitFun box? What’s your favorite thing you’ve gotten?

january birchbox unboxing

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My December Birchbox was pretty epic, by my standards, and this months did not quite score as high. But it’s hard to blow me out of the water every single month.. There’s always an ebb and flow with my satisfaction. Here’s what I got..

  • Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm SPF 45+ — can I just say something? I’m a liiiiittle over BB creams. I know they’re the equivalent of sent-from-heaven makeup, but I have received what feels like 589235 samples of BB creams since they hit the shelves. My skin must be a weird color or something, because the samples never quite match me — I need foundation with a wide spectrum of options to find the perfect match. BUT any who — I haven’t tried this yet, since I’m so over BB creams. I’ll give it a go and if I change my mind will totally write a review!
  • Essential Elements Wake Up Rosemary Body Lotion — I also feel like I have tons of lotions (but who doesn’t?). This lotion does smell AMAZING! It’s very light, so would be good on not super dry skin.  I got the shower gel a few months ago, and feel like if you love that scent, this will be the perfect add on to your routine.
  • Innarah Defense Masque Oxygenating Masque — I freaking love getting face masks in my birchbox. I tried this one already. After I washed it off, I felt as if my skin was pretty dried out.. (maybe I left it on too long??) But after slathering on some extra moisturizer my skin was lookin’ gooooood! Unfortunately, the price tag reads on this $125.. So I’ll stick to my Lush face masks, thank ya!
  • Manna Kadar Lip Locked in All of Me — I am really digging colorful lips right now, and this is a color I am definitely excited to try! I’ll have to do a post later of all my current lip favs — perhaps this will make the cut!
  • Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk — Natural Tint — I was super excited to get this for multiple reasons! Firstly, my friends constantly rave about it. Secondly, I heard about the tinted version when it came out not too long ago and was VERY interested in trying — my current dry shampoo makes me look like a granny! And thirdly, it was featured in the Tone It Up Birchbox that is available to only new subscribers (boooo) so I was unable to get my paws on it. That’s okay, hopefully I can accumulate the samples they featured. I’ll let y’all know if this changes my hair-life .. I haven’t tried it yet, but I can’t wait to! At $19.50 for full-size, I’d purchase in a heartbeat if I love it.

Sign up for Birchbox here!

“sample”y crazy?!

Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 11.53.11 AMI can’t be the only one completely overwhelmed by samples — can I? Between Birchbox and free samples with every Sephora purchase (not to mention the makeup bags full of samples they do sometimes .. I sure am a sucker for those), I have a BAJILLION samples of products. I need to start finding a way to integrate them into my skin care routine! Perhaps some OCD organization is in order. Right now, they are all just randomly shuffled together, and just continue to pile up.

As a random resolution (I missed New Years with this one) I’d like to make it a point to organize all my samples and begin incorporating them into my skincare routine on a more regular basis. By doing this, I aspire to be able to write more reviews on products! (I’m still moisturizer searching, don’t worry — all y’all’s help has not gone un-noticed!)

How do you incorporate samples into your skincare routine?? Does your skin ever give you trouble because of them? I wanna hear in the comments below!

quest: the perfect moisturizer

Screen Shot 2015-01-13 at 1.56.06 PMOkay y’all — first and foremost… Sorry for slight absence the rest of the week! I’m wrapping up a rotation right now. But I’ve been reading blogs and trying to keep active on my fitness instagram.. Follow that here!

 

But I am now asking for y’all’s help… I am on a quest for the PERFECT facial moisturizer! The main rule is that it won’t break the bank. I have oily skin that can break out in times of stress, etc.

So I’m asking y’all — what’s your favorite facial moisturizer? Do you use it in conjunction with the brands face wash & toner as well? If you have a beauty blog especially, I’m interested in any skincare routine posts you may have. Just link below. If I fall in love, I will most definitely do a review of the ones I try and link out credit, of course! ❤

Thanks in advance for all y’all’s help!

review: red flower face serum

redflower_illuminatingrosecollagenrenewalfaceserum_900x900I know my posts have been beauty/review heavy recently — forgive me. I haven’t been up to a whole lot these past few weeks. I’ll spice things up again soon, I promise!

I received the Red Flower Illuminating Rose Collagen Renewal Face Serum in my November Birchbox. I have been spreading out the samples ever since! First off, the smell had me hooked instantly. Secondly, the (for lack of a better term) oiliness of this is also amazing. As a person with acne-prone skin, I am often hesitant to slather oil all over my face. But in the winter, my skin dries up a little bit, and this is the PERFECT amount of hydration for it. I’m in love!

Unfortunately, 1 fl oz is $86! While this would be a lot of uses (a little goes a long way), as a student paying hefty tuition twice a year, I have a hard time justifying spending that much on skincare at this point in my life.

 

Have you tried this serum? What did you think? What are your favorite face serums?

review: mirenesse mascara

mirenesse_icurl_secret_weapon_24hr_mascara_-_curl_power_900x900This month in my December Birchbox I received the Mirenesse iCurl Secret Weapon 24 hour Mascara. (This name feels too long for a mascara. But that’s neither here nor there.) It took me almost three weeks to get around to trying it simply because I’m currently using my most favorite mascara ever, L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes, and I’m hesitant to stray from something that works so amazingly. Anyway, finally gave it a whirl today…

To be honest, I wasn’t super impressed. True to its name, the mascara was very curling; however, it did not add enough volume or length for my taste. For a little background, I love love love mascaras. I’ve tried a lot. And especially with drug store brands, I’ll switch often. I don’t always love the mascara every one else does — I sometimes think I have weirdo eyelashes or something.

But this mascara just didn’t have the oomph I need, even with three coats. My lashes are naturally long but very fine, so I need something that is very volumizing and less so curling, which is why I don’t think this particular formula was my favorite. And at $29 a tube, I don’t believe I will be purchasing.

What are some of your favorite mascaras? Have you tried this one? What did you think?

review: davines hair care

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I received these three samples in my December Birchbox — Davines Replumping Shampoo, Replumping Conditioner, and Replumping Superactive spray. I was SUPER excited because receiving basically a haircare “routine” in a box doesn’t happen every month, and it caters to my OCD-ness and need for a routine. This is also perfect for me, since I have such fine hair that really lacks volume.

I’ll be honest though.. I was very disappointed. I used this routine several times before giving it the boot. It left my hair looking greasy and piecey.. Not at all voluminous! It was either the conditioner, or the spray, because it was concentrated around the bottom of my hair where I applied those products most. I haven’t taken the time to figure out which was the definite culprit because I usually don’t want to risk my hair looking like that again haha.

Have you had similar results with these products, or did you feel differently entirely? What are your favorite volumizing products?

gingerbread scrub

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If you are scrambling for a last minute gift idea, here one is! I made this gingerbread scrub using a recipe from MommyMusings with a few alterations.

Instead of almond oil, I just used the equivalent amount of coconut oil. Additionally, I did not have allspice on hand unfortunately, but I found a great substitute online. Instead of 1 tsp of allspice, you can use 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, and a pinch of ground nutmeg.

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This was SUPER easy to make (~15 minutes in all?) and smells DIVINE. I used a little on my hands when I was done — very smooth for a scrub, and the coconut oil leaves your skin feeling super soft!

Let me know if you try it, and if you enjoy! What are some of your favorite other DIY gifts?