The Influenster VowVoxBox

Influenster VowVoxBox

Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. I’m not being compensated for this post. The opinions expressed in this post are my own. I will always honestly review products I receive complimentary from Influenster.

A couple of months ago I decided to sign up for Influenster, an “exclusive community for trendsetters to share news, products, and reviews with the opportunity to be rewarded by brands.” Every once in while Influenster will send out a selection of products to some of their members for them to review. I was lucky enough to be chosen to receive their recent VowVoxBox with products for “brides, bridesmaids, mothers-of-the-bride, wedding guests, and wedding crashers.”

Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in 360 Barracuda (0.5 fl oz, $7.99)

“Skip the salon, get the results. Don’t settle for just color when you can get a base coat, strengthener, growth treatment, salon-inspired color, top coat, chip-resistance and a gel finish all in 1 bottle. Featuring the unique precision brush for a flawless finish and patented Vita Care technology for advanced 10 day wear, more shine and nourishing care.”

As you all know, I usually stick to traditional and neutral colors when it comes to my manicure. It certainly never occurred to me to wear the ‘something blue’ on my nails. That being said, I think that this is a really pretty color. Barracuda is a sky blue with a slight mint tint. I think it works especially well now that I got a bit of a tan.

I really like the brush on this nail polish. It’s quite a bit bigger than standard nail polish brushes and the tip is curved. This makes it really easy to draw a perfect line around the cuticles. Since this is a very light color I needed three coats for full coverage. The first coats were a bit streaky and there was some dragging and balding but by the third coat everything evened out nicely.

I was hoping to take a picture of the finished manicure but unfortunately this polish chipped within the first few hours after application. It only got worse from there with several additional chips appearing the next day. I did use a base and top coat with this nail polish, even though it’s advertised to not need them and I wouldn’t expect that to have an adverse effect on the lasting power of this polish. Overall, I’m not impressed with this nail polish especially at this price point. I can get an OPI polish for almost the same price.

Olay Regenerist Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream (1.7 oz, $30.99)

“Fade the look of dark spots in 8 weeks with Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream. Its Brightening Complex delivers tone ingredients 10 layers deep into the skin’s surface to help reveal pearlescent skin that glows.”

I’m pretty happy with my current moisturizer but I’m always up for trying new skin care. This moisturizer has a consistency that’s a bit lighter than your average cream. I think it would be great to use at night during the summer when my skin doesn’t need that extra dose of nourishment. The smell is really pleasant as well.

Pure Silk Moisturizing Shave Cream in Raspberry Mist (5 oz, $1.49)

“A sweet, fruity fragrance that will remind you of summertime and all the reasons you need super-silky legs: swimsuits, shorts, sun dresses. Pure Silk’s special combination of ingredients creates a luxuriously rich lather that protects against nicks and cuts, leaving your skin as smooth as silk and ready for maximum exposure.”

I usually don’t use a shaving cream because my razor blades have a shaving cream bar built in. However, this one is raspberry scented and the foam has a really nice, creamy consistency so it will definitely get used.

EcoTools Pure Complexion Facial Sponge ($5.99)

“The new unique Pure Complexion Facial Sponge is handmade with 100 percent natural ingredients, including Konjac vegetable fiber, for a better clean that reveals smooth, refreshed skin. It is dermatologist tested for use both morning and night to wash away dirt, oil and makeup, leaving skin glowing without over-drying or causing redness.”

This facial sponge is pretty neat. It softens up when wet and is gentle enough for sensitive skin. I usually stick to chemical exfoliants but this sponge will be nice when my skin is a bit more congested than usual.

Tide to go Instant Stain Remover (0.338 fl oz, $2.94)

“Tide to Go is the #1 instant stain remover and helps remove some of your toughest fresh food and drink stains.”

I haven’t used this stain remover pen before but the very best boyfriend swears by it. Another item that will get used.

Overall, this wasn’t the most exciting VoxBox for me. The Pure Silk shaving cream and EcoTools facial sponge aren’t things I would usually use in my beauty routine but I’m excited to give them a try anyway. The Olay moisturizer and Tide stain remover pen will get used but aren’t the most thrilling products to receive. And while the Sally Hansen nail polish is a cute color the lasting power (or total lack thereof) makes this one a definite fail. I’m still very happy to have received these products and plan on posting more detailed reviews once I’ve had a chance to test them thoroughly.

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January Wish List

January Beauty Wish List v3

1. Estée Lauder Double Wear Foundation Kit in Level 1 – $42.50

I absolutely love the Jouer Matte Moisture Tint but I’m always on the lookout for other foundations that provide just as much coverage (or more) but have a little less of a matte finish. I’ve heard so many good things about the Double Wear Light foundation from Estée Lauder. It’s supposed to provide medium coverage while being very light weight – just what I’m looking for. This set includes a full size of the foundation plus a trial size of their primer, concealer, and a foundation brush for only $5.50 more, so it’s a really good deal. Intensity 1.0 is the lightest shade they offer so I hope that it will match my skin tone.

2. Real Techniques Core Brush Set – $17.99

  • Detailer brush: precision cut to effortlessly conceal problem areas; or, use with lipstick for long-lasting shape and definition
  • Pointed foundation brush: use with liquid foundation to build custom coverage
  • Buffing brush: ideal for full coverage application of powder and mineral foundation
  • Contour brush: delicately applies highlighter to contour or create sheer, soft-focus finish
  • Panoramic brush case is a 2-in-1 case + stand

Real Techniques brushes have gotten rave reviews in the beauty blogger world. I usually apply my foundation with my fingers but I’ve recently started to use a kabuki brush to buff it in at the end. This achieves a more even, less caky finish which provides a much better canvas for powder and blush while improving the overall wear time. While the kabuki brush works fairly well it does take off some product, reducing the coverage of my foundation. I hope that the buffing brush in this set will work better in that regard. I also need a new blush brush and the detailer brush is supposed to work really well for that. Lastly, you just can’t beat the price. $17.99 for four brushes and a case? Sign me up.

3. NARS Final Cut Limited Edition Collection

NARS is set to release the Final Cut collection in addition to their Spring collection later this month. The Final Cut collection consists of four blushes (0.16 oz, $29 each), four satin lip pencils (0.07 oz, $25 each), and one illuminator (1.1 oz, $30) in gorgeous shades of pink. I personally have my eyes on the blushes. I really like the shade Love, a tea rose, and I’m also going back and forth between New Attitude, a cherry blossom pink, and Sex Fantasy, a pale lavender pink. So far I’m leaning toward New Attitude but swatches are hard to find and vary widely so I might end up ordering all three and returning the one(s) that I like least. It states at the above links that this collection is a Nordstrom exclusive. I don’t believe this to be true, however, it seems to be the only place that takes preorders at the moment.

4. Olay Fresh Effects {Out Of This Swirled} Deep Pore Clean Plus Exfoliating Scrub – 5 fl oz, $6.99

I went to Target the other day and saw this exfoliating cleanser. It seems to be a new release for 2014. Look at how pretty it is! It has swirls! Best of all, it comes in three delicious scents: White Grapefruit And Green Tea, Green Apple And Jasmine Tea, and Honeysuckle And White Tea. I have quite a few cleansers that need to be used up first and since I’m trying to stick to my New Year’s resolution I passed this cleanser up for now. However, I will be sure to pick one up as soon as my stash has been reduced a bit.

5. tarte Lights, Camera, Flashes Statement Mascara – 0.31 fl oz, $23

Right now I only own a sample of this mascara but I’m loving it. However, I have a ton of other mascara to use up first, 14 to be precise. Again, since one of my resolutions was to reduce my makeup stash I’m planning on using up a good chunk of them first. Once I have reduced the stash to a reasonable amount (I’m thinking 5) I would like to purchase the full size of this mascara.

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Birchbox – Limited Edition Boxes: Mass Appeal – Birchbox for CEW

To find out more about what Birchbox is click here.

Birchbox has teamed up with Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW) for two limited edition boxes that highlight finalists and winners of the 2013 CEW Beauty Awards. This box, titled “Mass Appeal”, contained six drugstore products while the other box “Prestige Headliners” contained department store brands. The Birchbox pages for the two boxes are here and here, respectively. Unfortunately, they are both sold out. Here is what the Mass Appeal box looked like:

Birchbox - Limited Edition CEW Mass Appeal - box - mine

The box contained the following products:

Birchbox - Limited Edition CEW Mass Appeal - products - mine

  1. Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream

    Sample size: 50g, $7.22 value
    Full size: 90g/3.2oz, $13

    “Defy dry hands with this exceptional hand cream that features Baobab Oil to help moisturize, Watermelon Seed Oil to nourish and natural Fruit Acid Complex to gently exfoliate. So the only thing you’re left with are amazingly soft, absolutely smooth hands.”

    I don’t use hand lotion that much. Maybe my hands are just naturally smooth but I usually get by with just needing to use some hand lotion every once in a while during the winter months. But I figured that it doesn’t hurt much so I’ve started to use this cream pretty regularly in conjunction with the Julep cuticle oil I received in the Prestige Headliners box. This lotion does a good job. You don’t need much at all and it smells really good. My only complaint is that I wish it would absorb into my skin faster.

  2. NIVEA A Kiss of Olive Oil & Lemon Moisture Rich Lip Care

    Size: 0.17oz, $2.99

    I’ve bought a few lip balms by this company before and I’ve really liked them. This one is no different. It does just what a lip balm is supposed to do – nothing more to say.

  3. L’Oréal Infallible Eyeshadow

    Shade: Midnight Blue
    Size: 0.12oz, $7.95

    When I ordered this box I had hoped for a different color than the one pictured in the promotion but I got the Midnight Blue anyway. I don’t use eyeshadow very often and when I do I stick to neutrals. I’ve been experimenting with my Naked2 pallet from Urban Decay and although I’ve really enjoyed doing that I’m just not bold enough to go for a dark or colorful eyeshadow. Not sure what to do with it but I think I’ll hold onto it for now in case I feel capricious one day. Or did someone receive a more neutral shade and wants to swap?

  4. Simple Revitalizing Eye Roll-On

    Size: 0.5oz, $10.99

    “For those mornings when eight hours of sleep just didn’t happen (heck, you didn’t even make it to six), your eyes are the first to give you away. Fortunately, puffy eyes and dark circles are no match for this cooling roll-on, which quickly reduces puffiness and rejuvenates the delicate eye area. This refreshing formula is free of dyes, perfumes, and other harsh irritants, making it perfect for those with sensitive skin.”

    I’ve received quite a few eye cream samples lately and I decided that I want to use one after the other to be better able to judge the claimed long-term-effects. However, I’m looking forward to trying this out since it is supposed to help with dark circles which I’m struggling with.

  5. Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain

    Shade: Romantic
    Size: 2.7g/0.095oz, $8.99

    “It’s a pampering balm fused with a lightweight lipstain in an adorable chubby crayon. Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain gives softer, smoother lips with a perfect flush of color that lasts hour after hour. The gel formula comes in 12 vibrant shades that match any look or mood.”

    This what the product I was looking forward to the most with this box. I’ve been wanting to try a lip stain for a while and I was very happy with the way this product applies and how the color turns out. I had been hoping for a color in the pink to purple range but the shade I received, Romantic, is a true red. I’m usually not a huge fan of reds because I feel that it doesn’t go well with my fair skin and blonde hair. The nice things about this lip stain is that you can really vary your look by how much you apply — one swipe for a more natural look that enhances your natural lip color or a few swipes for a deep red lip. I usually stick to just one swipe and I’ve been really liking that look — especially in conjunction with my new favorite blush, the InStain blush from theBalm in Swiss Dot. I’ve been using this lip balm stain almost everyday for the last week. I think I will purchase some more shades soon and make sure to review them on this blog as well.
  6. Olay Pro-X Spot Fading Treatment

    Sample size: 7ml/0.23oz, $14 value
    Full size: 15ml/0.5oz, $29.99

    “The gentle yet powerful Pro-X Spot Fading Treatment reduces the look of dark spots and discolorations caused by years of sun damage, while hydrating skin for a brighter, more even tone.”

    I’ve been using Murad’s Post-Acne Spot Lightening Gel for the last 4 weeks to get rid of my acne scars and I think that I’ve been seeing some improvements. Considering that the Olay product is just as expensive (the Murad treatment is $60 for 1oz) I don’t have much incentive to switching but I will give it a try once I’ve used up my current product.

All in all this was a pretty good box. Not quite as exciting as the Prestige Headliners sister box but it still contained some neat products. The total value came in at just over $50. I paid $12 for the box so that is a really good value. What did you think of this box?