Sunday, November 24, 2013

Birchbox: Novemer 2013

Sweet Photo-skills of Jzim
The good, the bad, the Birchbox: This month was all over the place for me; having received 2 incomplete boxes to make up 1 full-box of samples was kind of an experience. The picture above is that of my 2 boxes combined to fix the initial error of sending me my original box with only 2 samples. Through this bizarre month, I have been able to capture Birchbox's customer service in full.

For each product you will see my own opinion and underneath that you will see "Reasons to Bitch." Reasons to Bitch is all inspired and generated from what others are bitching about on message boards.

Theme: More Good (The theme never correlates to the products received and it's more like 'what we should be focusing on for the month', itself. People like to cause a fuss about this...but uh, they need something to bitch about when waiting for their clothes to dry at the laundry mat. Zzing.

Aloxxi: Weightless Styling Gelee- High-priced hair products aren't always worth the cost, and this is one of them. This gelee has an incredible unisex scent, but it's pretty lackluster in every other area. The consistency is thin and stringy and the benefits aren't really impressive.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I don't use fancy hair products and refuse to ever even try."
  • "This costs too much for my penny-pinching ways."

Color Club: On the Rocks- This polish is the perfect holiday color for all of the upcoming parties. Color Club does a remarkable job with their formula and applicator brush. Having several Color Club polishes already, I am once again, impressed.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "We get sent Color Club polish in every other box and I'm over that."
  • "Once again, I got a sassy, fun color and I simply won't wear that to the office."

Laura Mercier: Lip Glace in Quartz- This gloss is so incredible, that I just might just need to re-evaluate everything I know about lip products. Laura Mercier Lip Glace is very similar to Bare Escentuals Marvelous Moxie gloss, minus the tingling sensation. The color, intensity, scent, texture, finish and design is amazing. Santa, be warned....I expect this in my stocking.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "Quartz, who wears a brown lip gloss?"
  • "24 dollars for a lip product? What is the made out of, gold?"

Eyeko: Black Magic Mascara- Simple curved, classic black mascara. I don't think this will replace any of my lash favorites, but I'm happy to stick the adorable tube in my purse for those quick "I always look this good," moments.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "Another black mascara...need I say more?"
  • "I have such sensitive little eyes and I can't use this!"

Fatty Sundays: Chocolate Covered Pretzel- I received the chocolate mint and nut pretzel and although I enjoy all of those flavors, combining them together doesn't exactly cause a party in my mouth. Once you accept the fact that you're eating something with the word "Fatty" in it, you are then saddened by the weird combination flavor.

Reasons to Bitch
  • 'Fatty Sunday' has unfortunately ruined my love with all things chocolate and pretzel.
  • "This wasn't a beauty sample and I'm one of those classless scum-bags that blast mean things to the company about a small pretzel sample."

Overall, with all the mishaps I endured this month, I'm still pleased. Birchbox has the most incredible customer service and I don't know who "Sara" is, but she is phenomenal. Mistakes happen (quite frequently with Birchbox) but they will overcome that and with the customer service they have intact, I'm inclined to work with them.

Grade: E for effort

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Glossybox: November 2013

Sweet Photo-skills of Jzim
Glossybox is like the "sleeper" out of all of the beauty subscriptions. There isn't really ever any buzz about it and the product spoilers never really jazz anyone. It isn't until you actually open the box and try the products, that you realize that you have dramatically upgraded your makeup collection.
Theme: Holiday Romance (I don't have a clue how they came up with this theme. Nothing correlates and there is no red lip, glitter, shimmer or shine, included in the box. A better theme would have been "Refined Classic, but they didn't ask me."
For each product you will see my own opinion and underneath that you will see "Reasons to Bitch." Reasons to Bitch is all inspired and generated from what others are bitching about on message boards.
Emite Makeup: Micronized Eye Shadow in Dams- The queen of all black shadows has officially been discovered. I am so impressed with the texture, color and blending quality of this product. Most black shadows are overbearing and not very user-friendly. This shadow is buildable and leaves a flawless finish. A+
Reasons to Bitch
  • "I am way too pale to use the timeless black shadow and I'm scared of even trying it."
  • "Halloween is black shadow, neat not apply."
Masty: Color Protection Color Protecting Leave-in Oil Treatment- $25 for 2oz is a bit pricey for hair oil. I'm currently obsessed with another oil, so I'm not overly excited to try this. The scent was nothing spectacular. Hair oils should be included in everyone's routine, so overall, this will be useful.
Reasons to Bitch
  • "Er, doesn't hair oil do the same thing as conditioner?" (Be ashamed if you thought this.)
  • "Who adds oil to their hair? I don't see the point."
Nicka K: New York Professional Eyeshadow Brush- This brush is made with 'pony hair,' and that creeps me out. As far as brushes go, this is average. There is no overwhelming technology that astounds me or improves my look. It's what it is...a brush...made with horse hair. No winners here.
Reasons to Bitch
  • "I never use shadow and can't possibly find another use for this brush."
  • "I don't use any animal related product, and this includes pony hair."
The Aloe Source: Jojoba Radiance Cleansing Polish- Neat. Another facial cleanser. The scent is plain and the cleansing effect is average. There is nothing exciting about this. Even the packaging is boring.
Reasons to Bitch
  • "I only use that scary high-powered skin product that increases suicide ideation."
  • "I'm a bar soap and wash cloth kind of gal. I don't need all them fancy products."
Vincent Longo: Duo Eye Pencil- Incredible, multi-look pencil in 'complimentary shades.' This pencil is perfect for creating a multitude of stunning looks. I am absolutely pleased with this product and hope to see more of Mr. V. Longo in the upcoming months.
Reasons to Bitch
  • "I got the super cool and trendy green combo pencil and I just want to bitch about that."
  • "I don't use a double-headed anything, and that includes eyeliner."
Overall, this box was a stalemate. I'm certainly not disappointed, but I'm not in-love either. The theme makes no sense and any kind of 'Holiday Romance,' that comes my way over the next month better not include any pony-hair. That my friend, is a deal-breaker.

Grade: B, thanks to the shadows and liner, mind you.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Ipsy: November 2013

Sweet Photo skills of Jzim

If I were publicly posting "things I'm thankful for" on social media for this month, I would be thankful for Ipsy. This month was by far the absolute greatest; but yes it's still your $10 and you can bitch if you want to. I'm aware. We're all aware. Onto the review:

 For each product you will see my own opinion and underneath that you will see "Reasons to Bitch." Reasons to Bitch is all inspired and generated from what others are bitching about on message boards.

Em Michelle Phan: Pillow Plush Cushiony Lip Balm: Berries- Amazing. Achieving the perfect "wine-stained" lip without looking like a lame attempt at the gothic lifestyle is not an easy task. Michelle Phan finally put out the perfect balm in the greatest of all colors.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I didn't get the color I wanted! WAH!"
  • "I don't like how I have to get my whittle finger all messy to apply this."
Be a Bombshell: Lip Crayon: Hot Damn- Who doesn't love a bright red lipstick? I'll tell you who: Twats. Twats don't love bright red lipsticks, but whores do. I can't get enough of this. I kind of wish I still was into the party scene because this Lip Crayon is killer.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "RED! I'm not a harlot! Why do you keep sending me this timeless, classic color?"
  • "I don't wear lipstick and I'm too greedy to give this or trade it away."
Nailtini: Straight Up Color Nail Laquer: Champagne- Ipsy loves Nailtini. We get it every other month. Luckily, this month we were sent a classy, low-key color. The consistency and overall application is pretty high. I might just look forward to our next Nailtini in 'January.'

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I have yet to learn my fine motor skills and apply polish like a toddler."
  • "I don't classify polish as 'makeup' and I except more for my $10."
TRESemme TRES Two Extra Hold Hairspray- I changed up my profile specifically to get the hairspray. If this were the 80s, I'd have the huge can in my fanny-pack. Although this isn't a lux product, it's still a great spray and an affordable one at that.  

Reasons to Bitch
  • "Oh Em Gee. I got this and I'm an irate 'Ipster.' I'll just spam the Ipsy FB page to let the community know of my distaste...repeatedly."
  • "I would never use a drug store hair product, because I'm a snooty cow-bag."
Pixie Beauty: Bronzer: Subtly Suntouched- Pixie is a top-runner in my cosmetic line of favorites. Unfortunately, this bronzer is only on the average side. It's fair, but the pigmentation is only so-so.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "Why were we sent a bronzer in November? My small brain doesn't comprehend-o."
  • "I already have a 'healthy glow' of radiation from the tanning salon. No thank you, Pixie."
Starlooks Gem Eye Pencil: Topaz- Metallic eye-liners need to make a serious comeback, because this color is insane. I love it, but it's not a "quick trip to Wal-Mart color." As far as pigmentation and application, this pencil doesn't disappoint.

Reasons to Bitch
  • I'm a sassy, outspoken curmudgeon and will neverrrrr wear this color to the office."
  • "I only use mechanical liners and cannot be bothered with the 2-second sharpening process."
Overall, Ipsy killed it. However, they kind of set themselves up for December, because everyone has unrealistically high expectations. This now will become the "month to beat," and I'll be impressed if they can.

Grade: A+

Friday, November 15, 2013

Pop Sugar Must Have: November 2013

Sweet Photo-skills of Jzim

Pop Sugar certainly gave a lot to be thankful for, with this months box. With mostly high-marks from the critical cynics, Pop Sugar saved themselves a headache, after recently increasing their prices. Onto the review:

For each product you will see my own opinion and underneath that you will see "Reasons to Bitch." Reasons to Bitch is all inspired and generated from what others are bitching about on message boards.

Michael Stars Wrap- This wrap alone makes the whole box worth it. I'm not a typical scarf kind of gal, but I can't wait to wear this as much and as often as I can. The pattern is so gorgeous and it is super soft. Long story short: I look phenomenal in this. Win. Win & win.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I'm stylistically-challenged and I don't know how to wear scarves."
  • "I don't like the pattern and now want to write Pop Sugar mean letters expressing this."

Illume Candle: Naughty- "Spicy wooded scent" makes up this naughty candle that lasts a grand total of 35 hours. I am in love with this candle and couldn't be happier with the masculine scent.  

Reasons to Bitch
  • "Candles emit such harmful toxins and smog into the environment and I'm one of those really weird people that complain about things like this."
  • "I have such a sensitive little nose and this makes me all stuffy and sad."

Lands' End Single Canvas Wine Tote- I strictly like to drink out of a paper bag, but I wouldn't mind the upgrade. I'm just joking...I still like the paper bag. This tote is so well made and can be embroidered. Perhaps you know somebody that strangely loves monograms...and drinking.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I have no idea how to or what to use this for."
  • "I'm a former alcoholic. Thanks for the reminder, Pop Sugar."

Maison De Monaco: Strawberry & Blackcurrant Cream Preserves- I have never in my life put anything better than this in my mouth. There has been some steep competition, but Masison De Monaco prevails. The scent, flavor and consistency all work in an incredibly delicious way. Yum.  

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I strictly buy preserve-free jellies and this is useless to me."
  • "This is made with alcohol and that completely compromises my morale's."

The Soap & Paper Factory: Roland Pine Shea Butter Soap- Scented bar soap is more of a novelty than anything, simply because you can't really use it anywhere other than your hands. I, however, enjoy the pine scent so perhaps I'll stop resenting hand-washing...for at least a little while.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I washed my lady parts with this soap and now I need to make a trip to my gyno."
  • "I still can't forgive the 'Paper Factory' for sending out those hideous paper coasters, (which I use each and every day since receiving them.)"

Absolute! Nail Polish Remover Pads: Peach- The good: These are the tiniest, cutest and perfectly purse-sized nail polish pads. The bad: They smell like peach-booze. They are horribly oily and they only clean about 2 nails per pad. I appreciate the concept, but there is a reason that they retail for $2 per pack. 
Reasons to Bitch
  • "They removed all of my polish, and then stained my fingers."
  • "The oil from the pads stained my clothes AND broke my heart."  

Canvaspop Gift Card: $30- With the exclusion of having to pay for shipping & handling, this gift card is pretty fantastic. Once I find a canvas-worthy photo, I'll gladly pay for shipping. An 8x10, unframed canvas is a flat $30. Very cool.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I refuse to pay for shipping and I'm angry that Pop Sugar put me in this situation."
  • "Photography has met the digital age and nobody prints out pictures anymore."

Barefruit Crunchy Sea Salt Caramel Apple Chips- How delicious does this sound? Not only is the packaging attractive, but these are super low in calorie. What's not to love, right? These are hideous. They do not taste like apples, or caramel, or chips, or even salt. 100% natural, 100% nasty.

Reasons to Bitch
  • "I took these to work for a healthy snack alternative and I about died from the awfulness."
  • "I can buy these at the gas station and that to me...just isn't luxury."

Overall, this month was incredible. Hopefully this becomes a trend, but alas...we all know that this is never the case.

Grade: A+

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Blush Mystery Beauty Box- November 2013

Sweet Photo-skills of Jzim

November, the month where we all pretend that we're happy and "thankful" for all of the "blessings" in our lives. Well, this is only relevant if you're publicly bragging on Facebook to make yourself look a little less like a wanker. However, in the world of beauty subs, a word you'll never hear. Onto the review:

For each product you will see my own opinion and underneath that you will see "Reasons to Bitch." Reasons to Bitch is all inspired and generated from what others are bitching about on message boards.

Cargo High Pigment Pencil: Brown- This is the perfect pencil for achieving a professional look without looking overly made-up. Application is fairly decent, but nothing to really rave about. I'll use this pencil when I have to look alert for those horrible 6am work shifts.
Reasons to Bitch:

         - "This isn't a mechanical liner and I actually have to sharpen this pencil."
         - "Brown is such a boring, poop color and my peepers deserve the best."

Nick Chavez Horsetail Root Lifting Spray- Horsetail Root Extract is a large plant with hollow stems, primarily used for medicinal purposes. I was hoping that this was the case and it wasn't from an actual horse's tail. This spray smells so much like alcohol and would be the worst to use after a drinking binge. Overall, this product is alright. It kind of seems like it was a lame attempt at a lifting spray.   

Reasons to Bitch:

        - "My hair is already full, thick and gorgeous."
        - "I'm still concerned that this is from an actual horse's tail and that is not okay with me."

Pur-Lisse Pur Perfect Essential Daily Moisturizer- Oh, how I enjoy moisturizers. Psyche, no I don't. What I do find exciting about this is that it's a 30spf sunscreen as well. At least that one day of the year when I go outside, I'll be covered.

Reasons to Bitch:

        - "I already have too many tubes of this from other beauty subs."
        - "I never use sun-screen, because a tan is worth the health risk."

Anstastia Mini Hydrafull Gloss: Sorbet- How I would have loved for this to be full-sized...even trial-sized would have been nice. This gloss is half of the size of my pointer finger. No exaggeration. The color is phenomenal, but the applicator tip is a plastic paddle. I hope this isn't the new trend for lip applicators, as I am seeing it pop up everywhere. This gloss is great...just a mini-baby gloss.

Reasons to Bitch:

         - "This is such a bright neon color and I would never wear this shade for the Fall season."
         - "This is so small; it got lost in my pocket."

Smart FX Smartlash Enhancer- My lackluster, short lashes has officially given me a complex. I begged my eye doctor for lash help and he just laughed at me. I told him that I was losing friends because of my short-lashes. He did not believe me. After several weeks of usage, I'll be able to give more than a past life-memory for a review.  

Reasons to Bitch:

         - "I already have gorgeous Disney Princess lashes."
         - "What if I love this and have to repurchase it at the retail price?!"

--> While searching for Smartlash Enhancer reviews, it seems like all  of the fantastic reviews on certain websites may be part of a consumer scam. Not saying that the product is harmful, but more of a false advertisement. That's the general buzz on the inter-web, but relying on another persons opinion isn't exactly how you should live your life, but that's just my opinion.  

Paula’s Choice RESIST Ultra-Light Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum- Another, "You're getting old" serum. I don't have wrinkles. Perhaps it's because I'm still in my 20s or the fact that I keep using all of these bizarre serums sent my way.

Reasons to Bitch:
          - "How many more skin care items are there in this world?"
          - "I have super-sensitive skin, but I'll use this and complain anyways!"

Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Color Maximum Volume Mascara: Black- As far as mascaras go, this one is pretty average. The brush is average, the application is average and the color is...what was it? Oh, average. Mascara has come a long way, but I guess we were sent one that was created in the 80s.

Reasons to Bitch:

          - "The tube has a sticker on it saying, "Gift-not for resale," and that's tacky."
          -  "I needed another black mascara like another hole in my head."

Overall, I'm not exactly high-fiving everyone around me, but I'm not immensely disappointed either.
Grade C: Needs improvement.