Over the last few months, I subscribed to four different beauty boxes from four of the most popular subscription box companies – Birchbox, Love Lula, My Littlebox and Glossybox. My plan was to find one or two that’s worth subscribing to long term. Naturally, I want a box that offers good value for money, a good range of products to try on, and most importantly, products that actually fit my profile. Having compared all the four boxes, I’ve finally decided to go with Love Lula. If you’re interested to know what I think of any (or all) of the boxes, please do click on the appropriate link(s) above. Otherwise, let’s go see what’s inside my May 2015 Love Lula beauty box:
What’s in the box:
1. Ren V-Cense Youth Vitality Day Cream, 15ml
I’ve always wanted to try Ren products; I’ve only ever heard good things about them. I’m not quite sure why I haven’t actually tried them – I just kept putting off buying them for some reasons. So when I saw this in my box, I was really happy, and I’m not disappointed with the cream either. I love the fruity smell and the texture – it’s creamy yet it absorbs so quickly into the skin I can almost apply my make-up instantly. It’s also very moisturising but not at all oily; in fact, it leaves the skin feeling soft and rather silky. I can’t comment on whether it really reduces fine lines and wrinkles or not – I haven’t used it long enough to find out, but overall, I think it’s a good cream.
2. Salcura Skin Repair Moisturiser, full size, 50 ml
I’ve never heard of this product before, but it’s a moisturiser and I’m always up to give moisturiser a try. The cream is formulated specifically for people who are prone to eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, dry and itchy skin, and contains anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and itch relief properties. It’s perfect for me as I suffer from very dry and sometimes itchy skin! Again, I really like the texture – it’s fast absorbing, it’s not oily but I do find that if you applied too much, it feels rather sticky – so, a little goes along the way.
3. John Masters Exfoliating Body Bar, full size
I love natural bar soap and sometimes, I prefer it over shower gel. I don’t know, I just feel like it’s easier to wash off and it makes me feel cleaner; not to mention that bar soaps are also generally cheaper than shower gels. Anyway, this one is really nice – it’s got amazing smell, it doesn’t dry my skin out (unlike a lot of other bar soaps out there) and it’s grainy so it does have an exfoliating effect. So as you can probably tell, I’m really glad I got this.
4. Teatox Skinny Detox Morning Tea
This tea contains lemon grass, dandelion herbs, yerba mate, goji berries, sencha green tea, ginger root, birch leaves, nettle leaves, goldenrod herbs and horsetail herbs. Sounds delicious. I haven’t actually tried it but can’t wait to do so.
5. Figs & Rouge Rambling Rose Balm, full size, 17ml
Again, I’ve never heard of this product before, but I love this balm. It smells wonderful and very nourishing. It says it’s multitasking – so you can apply it on your lips, body and face, but I’m using it as a lip balm mainly and also around my cuticles sometimes.
Verdict: I love this month’s box as I love my first Love Lula box. It always contain products that I actually like and would buy again. That’s why I chose Love Lula over the others, and so far, I’m very happy with my choice, and I’m really looking forward to receiving next month’s box.
This month’s beauty box is from Glossybox – it’s my fourth box after Birchbox, Love Lula and My Little Box, and it’s probably going to be my last ‘trial’ box before deciding which one I’m going to subscribe to regularly. So, without further ado, here’s what’s inside my Glossybox:
Price: £10.00 + £3.25 P+P per month
First impression: I like the box. I think it’s really pretty. But never judge a book by its cover! Honestly, when I opened my box and saw what’s inside, I was (still am) very disappointed. Don’t get me wrong, all of the products seem to be of good value and they’re all full size products! But they’re just not for me – I don’t know why because I filled up my beauty profile before subscribing and they promised that my box will be “full of products that fit” my “desired needs and lifestyle”. Erm… not very true. Also, I guess my expectations were higher having had 3 other boxes to compare it with. As you can see, there’s nothing much inside and this is supposed to be their special love edition box! Not very amorous in my opinion. I’m not sure what they usually put inside their normal box, but I don’t think I’m going to stick around to find out.
What’s in the box:
1. Wilkinson Sword Hydro Silk, full size, £9.99
A shaver… oh well… why not… at least it’s useful. I’ve tested it out actually and it’s pretty good – it glides easily on the skin and does give a close shave, and although I’m not too sure about the hydrating effect it claims to give, I honestly think that it’s a good shaver and I’d happily buy it again.
2. Marsk Mineral Eyeshadow – Fifty Shades, full size, £14.49
Fifty Shades eyeshadow! Fitting, considering that the movie will be released on Valentine’s Day. Unfortunately, I have very sensitive eyes that get red and irritated really easily so I tend to avoid eye make-up. So no, I wasn’t very excited to receive this eyeshadow. But I do like the fact that it’s 100% natural, so I will give it a try if only to see how it’ll fare with my eyes.
3. Royal Apothic Tinties, full size, $14
It’s a lip tint and I think it’s okay. It’s a bit too sticky for me and it doesn’t seem to be very hydrating. I’m also not too sure about the colour – the one I got is really orangey and it really doesn’t match my skin tone. I think they should have given something more neutral. At least then I would actually use it and who knows, I might change my mind after a while. But sadly, this one is just going to sit on my dresser.
4. So Susan Rose Quartet Lip & Cheek Palette, full size, £8
I would have loved this lip and cheek cream if not for its colour (again!). It’s too pink for my liking. I’m starting to think why did I bother filling up my ‘beauty profile’ if I wasn’t going to receive products that actually fit my profile? Anyway…
5. B. Cosmetics Mascara, full size, £9.99
Yes, every woman needs the perfect mascara in her life. And most companies promise that their mascaras would give you longer, fuller, more luscious, etc etc lashes. But unless you’re one of the blessed ones who already has that kind of lashes to start with, chances are, you’d be disappointed. This mascara promises the same thing, and guess what… just like any other mascaras out there, it doesn’t really deliver. But hey, that doesn’t mean that it’s not useful. Mascaras are always useful, aren’t they? So I’m glad I got this. Would I buy it again in the future? Perhaps. But I’m just not sure that I’d pick this one on purpose instead of any of its competitions.
So, my search for that perfect beauty box continues… If you’ve been following my blog, you’d know that so far, I’ve received one from Birchbox and one from Love Lula, and so far, I’m quite happy with Love Lula. But I thought I’d give a few more a try before deciding on which one to stick to. Yesterday, My Little Box arrived from Paris. It’s a January box – I know it’s a bit late, but hey, better late than never. Let’s go see what’s inside:
Price: £11.00 + £3.95 P+P per month
Got my January box for: £11.00 (using the code: MYFIRSTBOX)
First impression: I like the presentation – the box, the ribbon, the bag, etc. I think it’s chic (as you can see). But that’s not the most important thing – it’s what’s inside that counts, right? So, first impression when I opened the box was… that’s it? 3 samples, 1 bag, 1 calendar and a small magazine? Although, to be fair, the samples are of a much bigger size than those I received from Birchbox and Love Lula. I suppose, at the end of the day, it’s down to preference – do you prefer to receive fewer but almost full-size products, or more but true sample-size products? I would prefer a mix of both (obviously), but if I had to choose, I think I’d choose the latter. I mean, the idea of a subscription box is so that you can try as many products as you can before deciding whether to buy the full size version or not. Anyway, I’m not entirely disappointed because I kind of like my box. I also like the fact that you can ‘tailor’ what you’ll receive in your box by completing your ‘beauty profile’ online (just like Birchbox).
What’s in the box:
1. 2015 Calendar, £10
The calendar is nice, but does it really worth £10? I don’t know. Of course, it’s a neat idea to include a calendar – this being a January box and all; some people might like it, some people might not… I’m quite indifference really.
2. Sports bag, £20
Again, the bag is nice. It might or might not worth £20. The material is a bit thin, so I’m not sure if I’d use it as a sports bag. But I like the design and the size, so why not.
3. Nailsinc Nail Polish, full size, £11
I don’t really varnish my nails, only once in a while, but I’m quite happy that I got this, just because I’ve heard of the brand for quite sometime now but I haven’t got the chance to try it yet. So, yeah, happy.
4. My Little Beauty Energising Mist, full size, £7.5
I’ve always liked mist… facial mist, body mist, room mist, you name it. So I’m glad I got this. It’s a face and body mist combined and it smells really nice. One thing is sure: it’s definitely going into my ‘hospital bag’ – I think it’ll come in handy during my labour, which is not in a long time now!
5. Talika Photo-Hydra Day, 30ml
This product is expensive! But it claims to be “much more than a moisturiser“; “it’s the first cream to use energy from natural light to delve deep into skin and moisturise it.” Whatever that means… doesn’t matter… it’s a moisturiser (or much more), and it’s an expensive one, so I can’t wait to give it a try.
As I mentioned last month, I’m currently shopping around for that perfect subscription box that I think is worth… well… subscribing to. I said that I’m going to try a few over the next few months or so and I’ve promised to keep you in the loop. Last month, I subscribed to Birchbox – it was okay, I liked my box, but I wasn’t overly impressed. You can read my review here. This month, I subscribed to Love Lula and here’s what I think of my box:
First impression: I really like it. Okay, so the samples came in a normal box, so in terms of the box itself, there’s really nothing to shout about (and I complaint about Birchbox’s box design last month!). But I think the products that I got are better than the one I received from Birchbox. I like the fact that Love Lula specialises in natural and organic products and I’m actually looking forward to try out all the samples I received. The only downside with Love Lula’s subscription is that everyone receives the same items – unlike with Birchbox, you can’t customise your ‘beauty profile’, so you won’t receive a box that’s tailored for you. Despite that though, I still think that the items I received from Love Lula fit my profile better than Birchbox. I’m tempted to continue with my subscription… really tempted… but I’m going to give My Little Box (yeap, the one from Paris) a try next. Love Lula is definitely in my shortlist of beauty box to subscribe.
What’s in the box:
1. Yes to Cucumbers Facial Wipes, 10 wipes
I bought these wipes before from Waitrose and I really like them. They’re 95% natural, they smell really nice, they don’t leave my skin feeling dry and they’re quite effective in removing make-up as well. I’m glad I got this and the size is perfect for my purse.
2. Nourish Kale Enzymatic Exfoliating Cleanser, sample size
I’ve never heard of this product before, but I like the fact that it’s a multi-tasking cleanser and mask, and that it’s made with pomegranate and organic kale. The sample’s really small though, but I can’t wait to try it out.
3. Funny Bee BB Cream, sample size
I’ve never been a fan of BB creams; I don’t think they like me either. I find them really oily, heavyweight and I just can’t stand the smell. This one is made in France and it’s 99% natural. I’ve tried it out and I must say that it’s not oily and it doesn’t have that weird BB cream smell that I dislike. It’s also not as heavyweight as the other BB creams, but for me, it’s still a bit too much – it’s not very easy to blend and the colour doesn’t really match my skin. I actually looked like I had foundation on. So, I’m still saying no to BB cream.
4. Ecotools Mini Brushes
I love Ecotools brushes. They’re just so soft and give a natural finish. I have one that I use everytime I apply my MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus foundation. These ones from Love Lula are really small… I’m not sure they’ll be of much use to me really. I suppose they’d be more useful for people who have never tried Ecotools brushes before.
5. Vinali Body Lotion, 25 ml + Day Cream, sample size
Again, I’ve never heard of this brand before, and again, it’s made in France. Not much I can say about body lotion and day cream except that I use them everyday. So I’m happy that I got these and I’ll definitely give it a try.
6. Madara Detox Mud Mask, 12.5ml
I was actually looking to buy a mud mask since I saw an advert for Glam Glow on board British Airways on my recent flights to and from Tenerife. Love Lula read my mind!
7. Balance Me Rose Otto Hand Cream, 30ml
I love Balance Me Cleanse and Smooth Face Balm. I use it at night to clean my face when I’m wearing make-up or when my skin feels like it needs a bit of ‘aromatherapy exfoliating’ treatment. So I’m really glad that I get to try their hand cream. I love the smell. My husband said it’s a bit too strong, but I love it, I’m obsessed with aromatherapy. I also like the texture – it’s not sticky, it’s not oily and it gets absorbed really quickly. I’ll probably buy it again when it’s finished.
2 days until Christmas! How exciting! My husband is from Paris, so we’re driving down there tomorrow to spend Christmas with his family. I like travelling by car – I like the fact that we don’t have to rush and that we don’t have to worry about baggage allowance. Don’t get me wrong, I like travelling light, but let’s be honest, it’s not really possible to do that at this time of the year – what with all the gifts, etc. We have a large box dedicated just for them! Moreover, I’m pregnant! So, it’s probably better to just take the car. Personally, I’m still travelling light though – here’s what I’ll be carrying and wearing everyday: my new Burberry bag (Christmas gift from my husband), my trusted Ugg boots to keep me warm, a snood or a scarf (both from New Look), and a pair of legging (from Littlewoods) or bamboo tights (I love bamboo tights – they’re so soft and so lightweight; they keep you cool when it’s warm and keep you warm when it’s cold) from Boots.
And here’s what I’ll be wearing them with: my favourite Sweaty Betty jumper over a tank top, which I’ll wear with the legging (I think it’s perfect for car travel – really comfy), Mango jersey dresses (which I’ll wear with the bamboo tights), a Zara top and a cardigan from Asos (which I’ll again wear with the legging). I’m in my third trimester now and I’m still really tiny, so I haven’t bought any maternity wear yet. I hope I don’t have to. So far, these styles work for me, and they’re all in my normal size 8. I suppose, dress smart (read: ditch the jeans, skirts, and anything tight for a while) and you don’t have to spend money on something that you’ll only wear for a few months or so.
Oh, and the parka, of course. I bought this last year from Tesco F&F. It looks really good and is of surprisingly good quality for Tesco. In fact, it’s as good as the more expensive ones. I wear it all the time and with literally anything. Definitely my favourite winter coat!
Anyway, enough with fashion. Moving on to beauty stuff now. I mean, it’s Christmas, and that means Christmas eve dinner and Christmas day brunch, and spending Christmas in Paris means… well, taking a romantic walk in the city and do what Parisians do (whatever that is). My point is, I need to look good, and so, it’s obviously important to pack the right beauty products and make-up. I’m sure you’ll agree. Here’s what I’ve decided to bring with me:
1. Jean Paul Gaultier Perfume; 2. Waitrose Cucumber Facial Wipes; 3. MAC Lipstick; 5. Benefit Beautiful Eyes, High Beam and Ultra Plush Lip Gloss; 6. Bare Minerals Foundation, Warmth, Mineral Veil and Primer; 7. Lancome Mascara; 8. Eyeko Fat Eye Stick (sample from Birchbox); 9. Max Factor Eyebrow Pencil and Eye Liner
I did mention that I’m travelling light, right? Well, it’s true. It looks like I’m bringing a lot of stuff, but honestly, they all fit in my Cath Kidston ‘weekend bag’ – see:
Finally, as you know, we’re travelling by car. That means, we have to cross the English Channel with a ferry, which takes around 1 and 1/2 hour; and it also means spending hours and hours on the road. Obviously, I need to keep myself entertained and what better way to do that than with the latest edition of Vogue and food, which go into what I called my ‘food bag’ from Cath Kidston:
That’s it! I better go catch some beauty sleep and I’ll tweet from Paris tomorrow! xx
Disclosure: this is a non-sponsored post; it does, however, contain affiliate links.