Category Archives: Sample reviews

Sample Society November


I was really happy to have my Sample Society show up earlier in the month rather than later! There was a rumor mill churning over delay because of the Hurricane, but they pulled through! I’m a tiny bit sad to report that this is the second month in a row without a full sized cosmetic item, BUT I’ll live πŸ™‚

This month’s box was put together by Allure. I have to say that I’m happy with this month and there was one product I’ve been DYING to get my paws on- I didn’t notice anything all that special about this being an “Allure” box. That’s not to say I don’t adore Allure, but they are suppose to be “the beauty expert”. I have to say I tend to head to Beauty for my beauty expert support, but oh well πŸ˜‰

So, going in order of the card, the first thing I pulled out was this Shea Butter hand cream from L’Occitane. I have to admit I was hoping for a bigger sample based on what I got in my CEW box earlier in the year but like most hand creams you only need a little so this is plenty from a hand cream sample. I’m torn between this brand and my Deep Steep as a favorite. This .3oz sample is worth $1.62

Next was a product I have actually already tried in a previous sample box. It’s by Alterna and it’s their Kendi Oil Dry Oil Mist. As you can see from the lid this product ( and one other) leaked quite a bit. There were some pretty oily products this month and none of them stayed in their containers all that well. I didn’t loose a TON of products, but I did have to clean them all up. I like this product well enough, but I’m not a dry hair kinda girl, so I will be passing this one on πŸ™‚ This is one of the largest sample in the box at 1oz- which is huge for a hair product sample. This sample is worth $5.71

We got one cosmetic item this month and I was thrilled to see it was a lipstick.

Not so thrilling is the teeny, tiny size. Anyone ever get those mini lipsticks from Avon? Yeah, it’s that size. We got Diego dalla palma Classic Lipstick in Pink Satin. This lipstick is great, love the color and I’ll be able to apply it several times. I’m not sure what the sample value on this one is, so I’ll guess about $4. The full size of this retails for $34

As always with Sample Society, we received a perfume sample. This is the new perfume, Volutes from Dypteque. I have to say I am a fan of this sweet, lingering scent. This sample is worth $2.18 I DO wish we were getting the bigger perfume samples (like the mini bottles we got for a few months). I prefer those to these, BUT I am glad that this is a spray top.

Last was the product I’ve been really waiting to try! This is Precleanse from Dermalogica. This is an oil to use before washing your face. I’m VERY interested to try this one! Plus, it’s a bit of a two-for because they also sent a sample packet of their Special Cleansing Gel. This has a sample value of $6.86

Overall, I’m pretty “okay” with my box this month. I wish the lipstick and perfume were bigger, but I liked them quite a bit so that probably added to that feeling πŸ˜‰ My sample value was only $20.37. I started paying tax on my box this month recently so I pay $16 and some change so this was really NOT a huge gain on my end this month. I’d say out of all my boxes this month, I was most disappointed with this one and I’m not sure I’ll stay subscribed considering it’s HUGE value drop in value this month. It’s my most expensive box and so far, the lowest value :/ I’ll have to sleep on this one!


Ipsy Beauty Bag October


Formally MyGlam, if you didn’t already know πŸ˜‰ I have to say I’m over the moon with this months bag! I squealed like a small child when I got this bag! I cannot believe I got this for $10!Β  With a new name and a new website, Ipsy/MyGlam revamped themselves to be even more interactive for subscribers and they pumped up the volume and included some AMAZING products this month! This is my 6th month with them and I have to say they just keep getting better. I don’t know how they will EVER top this, but I’m sure they’ll find a way!!

So, let’s get started! Here is the ADORABLE bag! The theme this month is “Hello, Bombshell!” I would 100% identify as a bombshell. I love bold lips, winged liner and glam colors- which is EXACTLY what I got in my Ipsy Beauty Bag!!

First thing I pulled out of my bag was this Pequi Oil Treatment from Couture Colour. It helps restore softness and shine. This .5oz bottle retails for $12. Did I mention I only paid $10 for this box?! And BAM right there- not even the OH MY GOD item and your bag is paid for. Yes, I know. I’m still in shock. This oil smells amazing. I adore hair oils and with the colder winter months ahead, this will be especially useful. With a whole half ounce and only needing a dime sized amount, this will last a long time.

This wouldn’t be a Hello, Bombshell bag without Be A Bombshell Cosmetics πŸ˜‰ They included their Eyeliner in Onyx. This is a full size items and they retail for $14.

Their felt tip eyeliner is HUGE and that’s in a pretty neat way. I have to admit that my favorite liner of ALL TIME is my Starlook’s Precision Eye Pen and it has the world’s tiniest tip. So, I’m willing to get this GIANT sized liner a try πŸ™‚

I did a few swatches and it seems like this is a pretty versatile liner πŸ™‚

Next was a 4-piece shadow collection from Coastal Scents. I have to tell you (though I don’t want to sounds like a complainer) that this is, in face- the world’s smallest eye shadow quad…EVER. Hands down, no doubt about it. But, it’s rare to get an eyeshadow in other subscription boxes, let alone 4 different colors for you to try out!

There is not a bad color in the bunch. On top is Vibrant Red, Frosty Taupe, Vanilla Sky and Raisin Berry. Based on the price of a single eye shadow from coastal scents, I’d say these are each about a half size making this mini quad worth about $4. I secretly love tiny things like this (as long as you will still get uses out of something like this) so I’m excited to put this into my Stick With It Palette πŸ™‚

Next was a mascara by The Balm. They used to be one of my favorite brands, but that is a long story. I have two of their other mascaras so I’m excited to try The Body Builder πŸ™‚ This 3.5ml sample is worth $5.54

Last was the most amazing product I’ve ever gotten in a monthly sample box. This is by Mirenesss and it is “Lip Bomb”. This beauty retails for $35.10. Yes, you read that correctly. It was not a type-0. Not only that but this is a combination lip stain and gloss. It offers amazing, long lasting colors but as a long time user of stain, I expected it to be drying like te rest but it is SO moisturizing.

This picture is silly, I know, but this is what the color looks like πŸ˜‰ It’s a pink toned down red. I LOVE it. I was really hoping for the #2 that a friend got but when I saw this one, my jaw dropped!

Overall, the total sample value (can we even call it that with 3/5 full size items?!) was $70.64! I am blow away by this month’s bag, but I always like MyGlam/Ipsy πŸ™‚ I plan on staying with this company (no matter what they want to call themselves) for a very, VERY long time!


Book Lover’s Cravebox


So, confession, I’m not 100% sure I’d call myself a “book lover” BUT I’ve been caught up in some good reads lately so I decided to go for it. I figured if I didn’t love the book, I know plenty of readers who I could pass it along to.

So, I got my Cravebox. Standard cardboard box and a stick on it πŸ™‚

As always, festive crinkle paper πŸ™‚

There was a card telling you what was inside and a little bit about each product and about the book.

The first thing I pulled out was a full size, 8oz bag of Natural Vines Strawberry Licorice…um, YUMMY! These retail for $3.99 and are available at Whole Foods.

Next was a snack I’m actually pretty familiar with. This is Crum Creek Soy Nut Mix. This sample is worth $.55

We also got this bracelet from Alexa’s Angels. I like the idea, but out of all the bracelets on their website, this is probably the last one I would have picked. This retails for $10

And of course, the book! It’s called How I Came To Sparkle Again. I haven’t read any of it yet, but I like to title and it’s certainly a book I’ll read.

We got this book just a little before everyone else, so I thought that was pretty neat! I’m a sucker for exclusives.

Overall my box was worth a touch more than double the $11 I paid, so I’m really happy with it!

Opalima “Unboxing”


I don’t usually just do blog posts of “look what I just got in the mail?!” I reserve my personal Facebook for those. Haha, BUT Opalima sent me the most amazing box of goodies to play with and I WILL be doing looks with them very soon so I wanted to share some exciting new eyeshadows I got along with some new products I’ve never tried before πŸ™‚

First of all, everything was neatly wrapped in tissue paper with a white ribbon on it. It was hard for me to not just rip this thing open to get to the good part! But I told myself, I should show you all the presentation so I calmly photographed it πŸ˜‰

Here’s all the pretties! This is the bottom/label of most of these πŸ™‚ I got 2 blushes, 8 eyeshadows (ahhh!!) an Oil Control Primer and one of Opalima’s new Lip Cremes!

Opalima Mineral Eyeshadows come in twist-on lidded jars with three hole sifters inside. They all come sealed with a paper inside the lid.

The paper tells you the product information like the ingredients πŸ™‚

On the bottom, is the color number and which collection the color comes from.

My first three shadows are from three different Collections. One top, I have #2 from the Night & Day Collection and on bottom I have #2 from the In The Pink Collection & #5 from the Violet Eyes Collection.

Next was one of Opalima’s brand new Lip Cremes. This is in the color #3, red Raspberry. I adore this color! I can’t wait to get some curls going and go all out with this beautiful red lip. There is a slight orange undertone to this color that really makes it pop- on any skin tone. They currently have 13 colors including a clear lip conditioner.

Next was two shadows from the Green with Envy Collection, #15 & #17. I especially love #15 (bottom) with the blue undertones. I’m often scared of blues, but this one is just green enough to rock as a smoky eye.

I also got three colors from my favorite Opalima Collection- House of Browns. I feel like there was some mind reading going on here because these three colors are my all time GO TO shadow shades. This is #11, #8 (I wear shades just like this for a perfect day time smoky look almost every day!) and #10- the perfect gold for any blue eyed girl.

I also got two of their blushes from their cleverly named Made You Blush Collection. On top is #6 and on bottom- #3.

Last was the Bamboo Silk/Clay Oil Control Primer. They call this a primer, but you can use it anytime to remove excess oil. I am forever talking about my oily skin so I CANNOT wait to try this product out! Because it’s going to dry you out, they don’t recommend this for dry skin or sensitive skin- neither of which I have!

I also got a sample of the Oil Control Primer #2. This one is ideal for my in the winter months when I will likely be a bit drier in some areas of my face πŸ™‚ There are 3 different powders like this that Opalima has is their “Face Section” of their website πŸ™‚

I’m SO excited to do some tutorials and more for you guys so let me know if there is anything specific you would like to see. Below are some swatches of the items I plan to use this evening πŸ˜‰

Left to right: Lip Creme #3, House of Browns # 10, Made you Blush #6!! LOVE LOVE!!


Bluum September


I got my Bluum box a few days ago and this is my second month with them πŸ™‚ I hoped for a few more “mommy” items this month, but I am still very happy with this box especially with it’s $11 price tag πŸ™‚ So, let’s dive right in!

The ever Fab, rustic looking box with it’s adorable logo πŸ™‚

This month’s theme was Milestones. I have to take a second to tell you guys, I didn’t really get it. I just didn’t get that theme reference from any of the items this month :/ Not to say they aren’t great items! I just don’t know what this was suppose to mean…sorry.

And the items this month! Check out that big ‘ol full size item right on top!

First on the list- Wexy bags. We use these. Love these. This sample included 4 bags, one of each monster. This sample has a value of $.57

Next was Belly Bar. I reviewed the chocolate prenatal vitamins from this same company a while back and they, just like this bar, tasted great! These are ideal for new mommies or pregnant women πŸ™‚ This sample is worth $2.49

Next was a full size item, Triple Wash. We received the cream last month. This is a body wash & shampoo meant to calm and soothe irritated skin. This retails for $11.45

Next was Spiffies Tooth Wipes. While both my boys attempt to brush their teeth, my youngest often fights me on it so I’ll be excited to try these as he chews on his blankie and I think he would like this sensation. We used a washcloth when mine were tiny so this is an exciting thing to see come on the market. We got 4 making this a sample value of $1.20

& lastly, was a hand lotion sample from The Good Home Co. I love hand cream & I love Lavender but I’m disappointed that this is one time use. I’d call this about .25 oz so it’s worth $.28

Overall, the value of my Bluum box this month was $15.99- which is almost half of the value of the one I got last month. I’m not in LOVE with this one, but I’m not too upset either. I’m excited about the kids items I got more than anything and that is WHY I signed up for Bluum πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to share next month’s Bluum with you guys!

Beauty Army September


Alright, I’ve got another month of Beauty Army to share! If you don’t already know what Beauty Army is, it’s a monthly service that is $12 a month and you get to pick 6 samples. It’s different than other services in that way and you also know how big each sample is when you choose- which is my favorite part of this one!

So, it came in this standard black box that it always does πŸ™‚ these are super re-useable. The possibilities are endless.

All my samples are neatly wrapped in pink tissue paper with a card on top. Because you choose your own samples, there is no product information, but you can get that on their website πŸ™‚

The first thing I pulled out was by Skyn Iceland and it is their Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels. I got one pair. I tried these and honestly, felt nothing and saw no results. I’m wondering if this is something you would have to use more than once. This sample is worth $3.75

Next was Suntegrity 5-in-1, this is basically a BB Cream & I can’t wait to try it. This .25oz sample is worth $6.62- this stuff is not cheap!

I also chose this 5gram jar of Lipsi’s Aphrodite Powder. This powder is designed to absorb excess oil on the skin & I have to say I really like this powder! I think I’ll be purchasing more of this here soon. I just put this on top of my liquid foundation (before a setting powder or spray) and it really helps keep my oily-ness at bay. (which is saying a lot for me!) This sample is worth $5.

I saw Nailtiques and I couldn’t resist!! I absolutely LOVE their Formula 2 nail protein and now I have this adorable mini to keep in my purse. I can’t get enough of this has a sample value of $8.75

Bath & Body Works in a new addition to Beauty Army and even though it’s not super expensive or “high end”, it’s definitely quality. I’ve never had a B&BW product I didn’t love. This smells divine. These retail for $3.50

This Vita-K sample jumped out at me because I got my VERY first spider vein recently and I pretty much wanted to die. Haha. No, it’s not THAT bad, but I had never heard of a lotion designed to help them so I really wanted to give it a whirl. I haven’t done that yet, but soon. This is a full size and sells for $14.99 (Um, wow!)

Overall, my Beauty Army value was $42.61- which is out of this world! More than anything, it’s a value in things that I will actually use! I’ve realized recently that while some of my boxes have a huge value, sometimes that big ticked item has NO value to me- like Brown lip color in Glossybox! I hate that! & when that happens to you over and over again you get wise and cancel. I’m happy to be back with Beauty Army after having come to my senses about that!

I look forward to many more months with Beauty Army πŸ™‚

Starlooks Starbox September


If you have not gone over to & signed up for Starbox- stop what you’re doing and go! I’ve always been very impressed with my Starbox’s but this month…I’m OVER THE MOON. They’ve continued to delivered amazing, quality products but this month? We got 6 of them. Not to mention a brand new, never released item and well…I’d just rather show you πŸ™‚

Why am I having to use my finger to hold up my Starbox you ask? Oh, no reason. Just because it’s WAY too heavy to stand on it’s own πŸ˜‰

Here was everything inside! At the very bottom, you’ll notice a post card. That has a special offer on it and if you refer just one friend, next month you will get a special Starlooks makeup bag! I can’t that bag pretty bad! So if you do sign up, please let them know The Rosy Snail sent you!

The first item I pulled out was this amazing iPrimer eyeshadow base. I’ve been hearing about this for what seems like forever & I can’t wait to test this for wear time. The only other primer I’m very familiar with is Urban Decay, but right off the bat, I notice that Starlook’s formula is smoother and takes less “working in” on my eye lid. Being that I’m paranoid about wrinkles, etc, I’m loving that! Also, the finish is silky and attracts the shadow, rather than being “sticky” and “holding” the shadow. Man, I hope that makes sense πŸ˜‰ I’ll be updating you all on how it lasts/creasing or not, etc VERY soon….maybe tonight!!

Next was something all girls love…diamonds. Okay, they’re body jewels! But I admit, I have the though “Oooh shiny….” I received about 15 pieces in two different colors. They are both so wonderful for Fall. One is an Amber color and the other is a opalescent white. These came in a cute little plastic vial.

And Lastly, the thing that just tipped me over the edge- a 5 piece palette. Yes, you read that right, 5 full shadows in a monthly subscription box. Have you ever even hear of that in your whole life? These are all somewhat sheer, monographic shades. The possibilities are endless with these! They will make amazing eyeshadows of course, as well as highlighters, eye lines…and the way you apply them had endless possibilities too!

Here are some swatches, these do not do these ANY justice! They are amazing and each one shimmers 2-3 different colors and no two shades are the same. I think I will enjoy layering these are some brown smoky shadows this fall for just a hint of twinkle, but come winter, I’m going full out Ice Queen with these!!

Be sure to check out Starlooks on Facebook for special news, promotions and specials.
The value of this month’s box was well over double the cost ($15). The 5 shadow palette is $30 on it’s own. I’m yet to hear what the iPrimer will retail for, but I’m assuming around $12-$15 bases on quality and the price range for most Starlooks products. I’m VERY impressed with Starbox and I’m excited to use these products (and share pictures!!).

Did you get Starbox this month?! What was your favorite product?

Rockin’ Green Laundry Detergent- Giveaway


I’ve been trying several different detergents lately trying to find what is a good fit for my family. Rockin’ Green, like many of the ones I’m drawn to is eco-friendly but what Rockin’ Green offers that I haven’t seen before is amazing scents AND products to suite hard, normal or soft water.

I have average water so I chose “Classic Rock” from the Rockin’ Green line. I also got to try 3 different scents/flavors: Smashing Watermelons, Rage Against the Raspberry & Motley Clean (80’s-90’s rock anyone?!)

Rockin’ Green made my clothes feel and smell great! I’m not usually a powder laundry soap kinda girl, but I’ve got no complaints here! The price is also great, you can get 45 standard/90 HE loads for only $14.99 OR

You can click on the image below to enter to win any Rockin’ Green Detergent of your choice πŸ™‚

BeautyFix Fall 2012!!


I can’t tell you ENOUGH how much I LOVE BeautyFix! It’s a little pricy at $49.99 a quarter, but you are literally getting 10x the value as the cheaper monthly boxes! You get to select 8 products (many of the options are full size, high end products) and a cosmetic bag. My Beautyfix kit this Quarter DID have a few tiny hang ups, but I’ll get to those πŸ™‚

So, hang up #1, not a huge deal, actually kind of funny, but my bag was embroidered all wonky! I selected this same bag for the very first Beautyfix kit and it should be in the bottom left corner, obviously turned back around so it can be read. This retails for $15.

First thing I chose was an absolute no brainer for me. I love my nails and my nails love Nailtiques. This kit has a little bit of everything in it- 1oz of Nail Moisturizer (retails for $13.99) & a “Formula 2 Kit” that has a .25oz each of the Cuticle & Skin Gel, Formula 2 & oil therapy that retails as a set for $17.50… I get this EVERY quarter & I love it, but this time around I will actually be doing a giveaway for my girls in a Facebook group I love called Show Me Your Top Coats πŸ™‚ These products are amazing and I know those girls can appreciate pampered fingers and toes!

Next was another must have for me. Skindinavia’s Makeup Finishing Spray. I never leave the house without a few good spritz of this miracle stuff! Unfortunately, hang up #2– my bottle looked like it had seriously been through the ringer! It was dirty & beat up! I’m not sure why & it’s obvious this happened before shipping because everything else in my box is nice and clean 😦 This 4oz bottle retails for $29.99

From the new selections this month, I chose this NeoStrata Intensive Eye Therapy. You might be thinking to yourself, Alison you don’t have wrinklesΒ  & you’re right. I don’t- not yet. But I’m a firm believer that you should take care of your skin BEFORE it gets to the “point of no return” and I don’t believe you can really “reverse” wrinkles. This is meant to lift and firm, smooth lines and boost collagen. This .5ozΒ  cream retails for $75- I can’t wait to try it!

Hang up #3, this is my Snowberry Smoothing Eye Serum, I’m on an eye treatment kick lately and I was really looking forward to this product. This should have been a FULL SIZE .5oz product worth $53 (see my packing slip below! & check online at but instead I received a .24oz sample from their “Snowberry The Sample Collection”…worth $7.67 (based on the price of that set)…so do I feel like I was cheated out of a $45.33 value?! Yes, as a matter of fact I do. I’d like my full sized Snowberry, please…

My packing slip, mostly to prove I’m not some crazy complainer!

Next was a samples from Guinot. I had never heard of them before but put “peel” and “radiance” on a bottle and you’re darn skippy that I will want to try it! Why does the bottle look so weird and misshapen?! Because I squeezed out some product as soon as it arrived and it’s like heaven on my skin! It starts as luminescent gel and dissolves. It is the coolest thing ever! Then you just rinse it away for beautiful, glowing skin! This .49 sample would be worth $10.95 based on the full size but you can purchase this sample size for $7

Another new selection this quarter was a mascara, I couldn’t resist! I have to be honest and say I have not opened this to look at the brush. I have way too many mascaras open right now, but I can’t wait to get to this one! This retails for $24 and one word- BLING!!

Next was another new item from Eminence. I tried their body lotion last time and really liked it. This is their Cinnamon Kiss Lip Plumper. It smells like a sweet cinnamon candy. It makes my lips tingle, but not in a burning sort of way. It a way I can’t really describe. I’ll have to do some before and after picture on this one because I think it really works- this stuff also tastes like straight up Big Red gum- a personal favorite of mine. This is full size and retails for $26

My last product was also new this quarter and it combined two things I can never have too much of: Nick Chavez & Volume! I won’t be trying this out for a while because my hair is freshly died and I’ve got some amazing Kenra products I’m using, but I’ll hit this up soon enough!Β  This is Nick Chavez’s Advanced Volume Shampoo and it’s a whopping 80z! This retails for $22.

So, aside from my series of unfortunate events, my Beautyfix was pretty freaking awesome, like always! My value was $238.15 (would have been $283.28 if my Snowberry sample was correct :/ ) I’ll be contacting them about these issues and keeping you all up to date. For a $50 subscription, I’m hoping they will do something to keep my trust.

Have you tried BeautyFix yet?!