Saturday, 14 December 2013

GlossyBox - Limited Edition Christmas Box 2013

Last month I had the opportunity to buy a limited edition GlossyBox, namely the Christmas edition. First let me clarify that this is different to, and an additional charge, to the Christmas December box for normal subscribers. Now I've been tempted by these in the past - especially the Dr. Nick Lowe one - but I have always had my reservations that I'm paying a lot more for a box (usually around £30-40) that I may not like the contents of. Don't get me wrong, you get great value for money, but I can only just about cope with the normal boxes at £12.95 a month without throwing more into the mix!

I did find this limited edition Christmas box tempting though... it was only £25 for existing subscribers (£30 if not) but I was good and I managed to hold off for most of November. And then I got an email offering 20% off and 'BAM!' Sold to the lady with the ever-loosening purse strings....

The box in question arrived last week and let's see if my moment of weakness was worth it:

Absolute! Perfume Stick in Affair 102 - full size 8.3g $14.99
I've never heard of Absolute! perfumes and I have to say that a solid perfume stick has never really appealed to me. But being a good beauty blogger, I gave this a go and I almost immediately wished I hadn't. Affair 102 is 'infused with sheer undertones of rose' - well no bloody wonder I'm not a fan! This 'delicate scent' is anything but in my opinion, so not one I'll be wearing again. And even if I liked the scent I'm not sure I'd wear a perfume that wasn't a spray, I much prefer a generous and overzealous spritzing!

Be A Bombshell Cosmetics Blush Bronzer in Tanorexic - full size 4g $16.00
I first came across Be a... bombshell in the September London Edition GlossyBox (here) and wasn't disappointed in my first experience of the brand. This time I've got a blusher/bronzer to try out in the shade Tanorexic - sounds scary but it isn't - which is a warm sunkissed bronze with a shimmer. It's a little to heavy on the brown-side of colour for me to wear as a blush, however it works great as a bronzer. If you're not a fan of shimmer bronzers though I'd stay clear. It's highly pigmented, so a little goes far and it's long lasting too which is great for my oily skin. The downside is that the brand isn't easily purchased in the UK yet.

Butter London 3 Free Nail Lacquer-Vernis in Teetotal - full size 11ml £12.00
After much dabbling in nail art, Butter London is a nail polish brand I've yet to try out. So this was a welcome product in my box. I've heard many a good thing about this brand of 3 Free polish and its abundant colour collection, and for my first try I wasn't disappointed. If I'm honest, initially I was sceptical about the colour, Teetotal is a rich, mocha brown cream colour. In the bottle it looks a little 'yucky brown' and not one I'd pick out to wear, but once swatched, it does something with my skin tone and becomes the perfect dark taupe on my nails. The brush is a teeny bit on the small side and the consistency of the lacquer is slightly wetter than I'm used to, but I really am nitpicking now. In all a very good polish that I would look to expand my collection in.

EuPhidra Pearly Lip Gloss in MP04 ruby - full size 6.5ml €14.90
I have never heard of EuPhidra before now and have struggled to find much about the company. But from what I gather they are an Italian company that specialise in products and cosmetics for sensitive skins. This pearly lip gloss for example is paraben, lanolin, fragrance and gluten free - so there should be minimal reactions for even the most sensitive of skin types! I got the shade Ruby which is a lovely shimmery pink-red shade and its glides on like a smooth balm with very little 'stickiness'. It's not a particularly gloppy style gloss which I like and the packaging is sturdy with a nice sized doe-foot applicator. Overall a lovely product in a lovely colour. It's again a pity that this brand isn't easily purchased in the UK as I'd like to see what else they have to offer.

Philip B African Shea Butter Gentle & Conditioning Shampoo - full size 60ml $8.00
I quite like trying out new shampoo/conditioner products but don't often seem to get them in GlossyBoxes, so this Shampoo from Philip B is a welcome product to trial. It is a mild and moisture-rich cleanser that is designed to protect hair colour as well as strengthen the hair against damage - perfect for me! It left my hair feeling soft and smooth but I couldn't really say much about added volume as I didn't notice any extra oomph. It's a great shampoo for daily use, suitable for all hair types and I also like that the formula is paraben & phthalate free. I'll see how this bottle goes before I decide whether to purchase the bigger size. So far so good but it will have to go above and beyond what my BedHead does for me before I consider switching up my regular haircare routine.

So Susan Cosmetics Water-based Pore Luminizer - full size 15g £25.00
And the final item is from a brand called So Susan. It comes from the founder/creator of Jelly Pong Pong, Susan Chyi, and the brand philosophy is to make your makeup work twice as hard for you. She does this by making colour meet science and offers a line of peptide-loaded colour cosmetics that regenerate your skin, solve skin dilemmas and also give great coverage and colour. Now the highlighter, or pore luminizer, is water based (a whopping 82%) and it works to provide an 'ethereal' glow and luminescence to your skin. All I can say is whoa is it shimmery - a little goes a long way with this liquid illuminator! It is loaded with micronized pearlescent pigments so you will only need to dab on a tiny amount with your ring finger and blend out with a brush. For oily skins, this is perfect for creating a gorgeous dewy glow but without overloading the skin and making it look shiny - no one likes the 'sweaty betty' look. It feels amazing on the skin and I love that it's cruelty-free as well as containing no sulphates/mineral oils/phthalates/triclosan/animal by-products. Of the entire box, this is the stand out one for me.

In all I was a little sceptical at getting my money's worth from this limited edition box, but now I can honestly say there's plenty in the box that I am going to use and I don't begrudge paying extra for it. If anything this box has introduced me to some fabulous brands and I now have a few more amazing products to add to my stash :)

If you like the idea of subscribing to the normal GlossyBox, then use this referral link to sign up today.

Disclaimer - I bought this limited edition GlossyBox out of my own choice and money after a particularly weak-willed moment reading my emails. It was my choice to review the products above and I have done so in a 100% honest manner. I am not compensated for my reviews but if you use my referral link to start a subscription to the normal box then I can get points towards a free monthly box next time... well who doesn't want free beauty stuff?!!

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