I have to admit, I squealed a little when I opened my front door this afternoon and found my latest BeautyFIX box. I cheated a few days ago and checked out some spoilers and I was soooo excited to try my new goodies. I was especially excited that it was rumored to have TWO full-sized products. Small samples are fun and all, but I really feel like I'm getting a better value when a box has some full-sizes thrown in. Overall, I was pleased with this month's selection. Read on for all the details!!!
Full Sized Item: Nia 24 Sun Prevention 100 Percent Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 (2.5 oz)
Anyone who knows me knows I am obsessed with sun protection. It started in high school when my mom made an offhand comment about how sunscreen prevents wrinkles. Even though as a teen I really didn't ever believe I would get older, something about that stuck with me and I have cycled through countless different brands looking for my "holy grail" sunscreen. My current favorite is from Elta MD and it also contains niacinamide, a wonderful anti-aging and pigmentation-correcting ingredient. I was really excited to try this product with 5% niacin amide to see how it compares. Overall, my initial reaction was that I preferred the Elta MD sunscreen. It has a lighter texture and goes on very clear. The Nia 24, on the other hand, reminded me more of a traditional sunscreen texture, that is thick and very white. I was disappointed by the whitefish hue that is left on my skin after I had thoroughly rubbed it in BUT I noticed the hue dissipated after several minutes. Either that or I stopped noticing it. I was concerned about oiliness given the thick texture but my T-zone did not look any worse than usual after using this. In fact, I thought my skin looked pretty dang good with this on after a few more minutes of settling in!! I'm excited to keep using this, especially as I have noticed some minor sunspots on my cheeks. One more thing about this sunscreen, I was happy to see that it only uses physical UV protection (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide) instead of chemical. There has been a lot of talk lately about the health dangers of using chemical sunscreens and on top of that they seem to be harmful for the environment. The chemicals in many sunscreens have even been shown to bleach coral reefs!! See the Environmental Working Group's rundown for more details.
Full Sized Item: Colorescience Sunforgettable Brush-on Sunscreen SPF 50 - Medium (0.21 oz.)
So I have to admit that I already had a container of this languishing in my purse that I almost never use. It's not that I dislike it, it's just that I'm not generally a fan of powder as I prefer a more dewy finish on my skin. That being said, I was glad for the reminder to use this as an extra level of sun-protection now that the summer is here. I don't think I would ever use it for SPF by itself since it's really hard to tell how much you're applying. But, it's a nice thing to have with you if you are going to be outside for extended periods. I had previously been using the light shade and was afraid that the medium would be too dark for me (my skin is somewhat fair) but it turns out my fears were groundless. In fact, for research I tried both the light and the medium shades today and couldn't really tell I was wearing anything with either. This either means that the product does a great job at giving a natural look...or that the applicator doesn't dispense enough powder to provide the alleged SPF 50. Since I'm not using it as my only source of sun protection, I'll choose not to worry too much about that and will keep it handy on my summer adventures.
Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream (0.8 fl oz)
I have heard A LOT about this cream and have to say that I never really got what all the hype was about. Lotion specially for your butt? Will it make me look like a Brazilian goddess? Nonetheless, I was really happy that I'd have a chance to try it without committing to a full tub (which costs a whopping $45!!!). I liked the smell and the texture was rich while also sinking in quickly. But really, my butt still just looked like my butt afterwards which isn't surprising...it's just a lotion. Overall, I liked it but won't purchase due the price and also due to the fact that I prefer unscented lotions.
Alterna CAVIAR Anti-Frizz Blowout Butter (0.85 fl oz)
I almost never blow dry my hair because with my thick locks it takes FOREVER!!! But for the purpose review-writing, I decided to sacrifice a half hour of my day to trial this product. The texture was nice, starting out as a cream but melting into an oil texture when I rubbed it in my palms. The scent is mild, which I appreciate, but that's not to say that it's free of artificial fragrance. The real question is, though, did it prevent frizz? The answer is yes!!! I am loving the way my blow-dried hair looks and feels today and might have to consider making this a more regular part of my routine. But given my track record, it may be years before I have to decide whether I'll repurchase this item.
Shaveworks The Cool Fix (1 oz)
Smells like my dad's aftershave (strongly) and has a cooling effect on just-shaved skin. This was a strong "no" for me due to the smell. I put it on and washed it right off.
Dermalogica AGE Smart Biolumin-C Serum
I love Dermalogica and it's the inclusion of brands of this quality that makes me love BeautyFIX boxes. This product is so new you can't even buy it until June 14th!! According to Dermalogica's website, this formulation is designed to penetrate skin more deeply than comparable serums due to the inclusion of Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate, which is a stable form of vitamin C. I really liked the texture. It was moisturizing but less greasy-feeling that the cult Skinceuticals CE Ferulic. I have a feeling that I will be repurchasing this when I'm out, which will be soon given that I almost always wear a Vitamin C serum during the day.
Jane Iredale Lip Drink in Flirt
Value: Not sure as the sample size isn't listed. I'm just going to guess $3???
Jane Iredale is a highly respected natural brand that I haven't had enough of a chance to try. My esthetician swears by it and says it's the only thing she will put on her face. And her face looks amazing so I take her pronouncements seriously.I like this light pink, hydrating balm. It's just a whisper darker than my natural lip color, which allows me to feel put-together but natural at the same time. It has a unique smell, like lemongrass which I really enjoyed but the taste is 100% neutral.
Juliette Has a Gun Moscow Mule Eau de Parfum (1mL)
Perfume is so personal and individual that it's hard for me to review, especially since my sense of smell is not very keen. So all I'll say about this is that I don't like most perfumes but this was something I could see myself wearing. Win!
Total Box Value: $143.17
This is an amazing value for a $25 subscription ($35 if you are buying it without a subscription) and I'm really happy with the variety of products. I would considering purchasing at least 4 of them if and when I run out. There was only one product that I didn't think I would use at all (Shaveworks Cool Fix). One thing I noticed was that my box didn't have an insert with the usual product information and coupon code for online purchase. I hope this was just an oversight because the printed information is super-helpful when I'm sampling and reviewing products. Other than that, I have no complaints. With such a great box this week, Dermstore can count on my keeping my subscription for another month!!