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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Subscription Box Face Off: Birchbox vs. Ipsy

I've been a Birchbox subscriber for a loooong time (ok, over a year for anything is long in my world) and I have accumulated more beauty samples than I could use in a year. Erase fine lines! Moisturize! Super shiny hair!

I have found a few must-have products, but lately....eh. They just keep sending me anti-aging stuff and shampoo. (PLEASE don't say they are trying to tell me something...). I crave more makeup, nail polish, ya know- stuff that actually makes an impact immediately, not potions and lotions that may or may not work 50 years down the road but I will never know because I received a pea-sized sample.

I decided to do a beauty subscription box face off between the original subscription box, Birchbox and a newer one, Ipsy Glam Bag. Both cost $10 including shipping. Here's what I received in my April boxes:

Birchbox- April


Items included:
Keims Cleanshine Energizing Shampoo
Skin&Co Roma TRUFFLE THERAPY Anti-Aging Serum
Supergoop! CC Cream
Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eye Pencil
KIND Bar


Ipsy Glam Box- April


Items included:
St. Tropez Gradual Tan
Cailyn Tinted Lip Balm
Urban Decay 24/7 Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil
White Gold Shadow & Highlighting Mousse
So Seductive Lashes
Makeup Bag

Lip Balm (and yes, that is Charlotte my 4 month old wanting to participate)
White Gold Shadow and Black Liner
Here is some info about the boxes:

Cost-
BOTH are $10 per month, shipping included

Packaging- 
  • Ipsy products always come in a re-usable makeup bag
  • Birchbox always comes in a brown paper box
Personalization-
  • Ipsy guides you through a quiz with questions such as "Describe your personal style," as well as "How comfortable/adventurous are you with makeup?" and allows you to select which brands you love. You can re-take the quiz at any time.
  • Birchbox has a profile you can edit with questions such as "What type of hair do you have?" and "I can never have to many_________"
Point Systems-
  •  Ipsy allows you to earn points by reviewing products, reviewing that month's bag, referring friends, sharing the Glam Bag and Question of the Month on Facebook as well as initially for joining. Points are used to get a bonus in your next month's Glam Bag.
  • Birchbox allows you to earn points by completing reviews of that month's products, spending money in the store and referring friends. $1 spent = 1 point, 1 review = 10 points, and 100 points - $10 credit in the store.
All in all? I am leaning towards Ipsy for sure. Birchbox does throw in some cute things from time to time (ombre bobby pins, lip gloss carrier key chain) but the past few months, no so hot. I might still keep the subscription because once in a while they hit a home run, and ten bucks is like two coffees. I also love getting stuff in the mail, plain and simple!

If you want to subscribe to either, use my link please! Yes, I do get some points, so thank you- it allows me to review extra products for y'all!

Ipsy: http://www.ipsy.com/r/9edq
Birchbox: https://www.birchbox.com/invite/zt98l

What are your thoughts? Do you have a favorite subscription box?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Spring Fashion Snapshot

Trends.
I don't necessarily agree with trends. If I like something that happens to be in style, lovely, but I am not rushing out to snap up a pair of Tevas because they are on the trend list (YES. TEVAS. THE SHOES YOU GO WHITE WATER RAFTING IN. The ones you wore circa 1990 if you lived in my home town. The ones I got chastised for in the 6th grade for wearing a generic *shudder*).

Just wanted to put together a list to showcase what was out there for Spring 2014. Whether you choose to accept the challenge is your prerogative!

Nails: Peach
Essie in Resort Fling

Hair: Roots and "sombré" (softer ombré)

Color: Mint
Image courtesy of elegantweddinginvites.com

Skirt Hem Length: Midi
Image courtesy of stylite.com
 Shoes: Mule
Zara Mules

Print: Floral, Paint Brush Strokes
 
Rashida Jones @ Tory Burch Spring 2014

Lipstick: Orange

MAC All About Orange Lipsticks from the left: Razzledazzler, Sweet & Sour, Tangerine Dream, Flamingo, Sushi Kiss, Tart & Trendy, Neon Orange

Sunglasses: Rounded Retro
Tory Burch Panama

Texture: Laser Cut, Fringe
Valentino #SS14
Form: Knife Pleats

Tsumori Chisato Pleated Striped Skirt

Metal: All/Liquid
Image courtesy of Harpers Bazaar

Look: Athletic
Jewelry: Chunky Chains
Lanvin

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Attention Red Wine and Coffee Drinkers- Smile Pretty!

I went to an even a few weeks ago and just checked out the photos from the evening. They served red wine during dinner, and um...well...my teeth looked ridiculous. Anyone have this issue? And while I'm at it, I also gulp coffee like it is going out of style (although, let's be honest, coffee will always be in vogue. ALWAYS).  Here's the thing- yes, my teeth aren't that brilliantly blinding shade of white that Hollywood loves. And ya know what? I'm cool with that. I think it looks totally unnatural. You know who has had a super duper whitening treatment- they look a little day-glo-ish. Like Ross on that Friends episode:


I have tried a few at home whitening treatments- mainly those strips. After 15 minutes, I had to spit them out. They literally made me sick to my stomach and I wasn't a fan of being reduced to a chatterless drooler for an hour. I recently had the opportunity to try out the Colgate Optic White Toothbrush + Built-In Whitening Pen. I'm a fan. There is literally no wait time. You just brush your teeth like normal with the toothbrush, slide the whitening pen out from the handle, click and paint the gel on your teeth and that's it.


Did it give me noticeably whiter teeth? Yep, but not in that crazy bleached way. It lifted some of the damage I have done with my fondness for teeth-staining beverages, particularly along the gumline.



Give it a try- I think the cheapest place to get it is at Target for $12.99 and I happen to have five $3 off coupons if anyone wants them. I'll even spring to mail them to you if you e-mail/message me your mailing address ;)

Disclosure: I received the Colgate Optic White Pen set for the purposes of review. I am not compensated for this post and as always, all opinions are honest and my own.