August Birchbox!

I was again lucky enough to get a late-shipping box, and it didn’t actually arrive until last Friday, when I was away on vacation. So I had a nice surprise waiting for me when I got home!
This is a great month to buy from Birchbox if you’ve had your eye on something. They’ve partnered up with Pencils of Promise, to donate 15% of their shop proceeds to build a school in Central America. So go ahead and pamper yourself!
I’m not particularly in love with anything in this month’s box – none of it was bad, but none of it was particularly great either. Let’s get to the goods! (Mediocres?)

This month’s theme was “Beauty School” and included this nice fold out booklet with lots of nifty beauty tips. It details types of makeup brushes, how to read a product label, tips for shaving, quick fixes for makeup mistakes, and a 3-minute plan for morning skin care.

This month’s perfume is Viva La Juicy ‘s La Fleur. It smells nice, very floral obviously. I like it and I’ll probably use it, but I have to be honest – it just smells… typical. Nothing really to distinguish it from any other floral perfume.

This is a teeny tiny sample of Jouer Moisturizing Lip Gloss in “Birchbox Pink.” It feels very soft and … moisturizing … on my lips. Haha. 🙂 I am not a fan of this kind of lippy container (it’s got the fluffy applicator on the end of a stick attached to the lid) because there is SO MUCH wasted in the bottle. This tiny bottle makes it even harder to get any use out of it.

The bonus extra this month is this Schick Hydro Silk 5 blade razor. I haven’t tried it yet because I just shaved the other day and my hair grows really slowly. I’m sure it’s good though. The part I like about it is that it has a coupon on the back for 4$ off a refill pack, and 55c off Skintimate Shave Gel. I love coupons. Unless this razor completely stinks, I’ll be using that coupon, not gonna lie. Razors are expensive.

This is Apothederm’s stretch mark cream. I have a ton of “tiger stripes” on my tummy from pregnancy and I’ve tried several other things. None of them did a damn thing. I’ll be honest again – not expecting anything from this one, and I don’t really even mind. I earned those stripes, dammit. This was different from other stretch mark things I’ve tried, though – this was a cream, while others tend to be oils or gels. It had the old-lady smell though, and not in a good way.

The final items in this month’s box (it’s two items but it was packaged as one which totally feels like a ripoff) are these Shu Uemura Full Shimmer products for color-treated hair. The shampoo was much more liquid-y than most shampoos, but it smelled *excellent.* The “treatment,” which I basically used as conditioner, also smelled good. It wasn’t the texture that I generally need conditioner to be (I have very thick hair and this stuff just didn’t spread well). I don’t really notice any magical difference in my hair, but I did love the smell. I’m not paying what they want for it though, omg. I also want to register my dislike of the packaging. Aside from the 2-for-1 switcheroo, there were no instructions on the packaging! It’s obvious how to use shampoo, but I didn’t know what to do with the “treatment” and had to look it up on Birchbox’s site. Most uncool. (/Sweet Clyde)

So that’s it for this month!

If you don’t know about Birchbox, you may not know that they have a cool points program. I earned a bunch of points for my one-year subscription, and earn 10 points for each item that I leave feedback for each month. (If anybody signs up from this referral link, I get 50 points.) These points can be redeemed in the Birchbox shop – you get 10$ for every 100 points. I’ve been hoarding points and soon I’ll cash them in. What do you think I should cash in for?

Target Summer Beauty Bag

I’m a delinquent. Haha. I received this wayyy back in the beginning of June and am just now getting around to posting it. I’ve been entering lots of sample giveaways lately so if you readers are interested I can try to blog them more.

Apparently this is a regular thing they do over at the Target Style facebook page. My bestie got a spring bag, and we both got a summer bag! I definitely recommend that you “like” them and keep your eyes peeled if you want to score one!

This is the bag that came with it. It’s just my style. I switched it out almost immediately to carry in my purse. It’s a little padded to protect the contents, and a good size – not too big and not too small.

Let me start with my *favorite* part of the bag – a pair of Tresemme Split Remedy samples (shampoo and conditioner). I *really* loved the shampoo – it was nice and thick and foamy and luxurious, just like the kind they use at the salon. I can’t attest to whether it healed my split ends, but I did LOVE this stuff. I already bought a full-size!

Here’s the other shampoo/conditioner – Garnier Fructis Color Shield. I’ve tried and liked Garnier in the past, but I haven’t actually tried this sample yet – I’m waiting until next month when I dye my hair. 🙂

I’ve had this stuff in my shower for weeks but I feel like I’m still unfamiliar with it. This Aveeno Smart Balance scrub smells nice but … I guess it just doesn’t stand out? I can’t really think of anything else to say about it.

On the other hand, this Neutrogena sunscreen, I have a lot to say about it! I kept it in my crafting box for a week for outdoor crafting excursions. It was smooth and easy to apply and very effective. No burns here! I actually used all of it and threw the bottle out and now I can’t recall the full name of it! (Stupid too-bright photo…)

The last product I got was this sample of Revlon ColorBurt lip gloss. This specific color wasn’t exactly my style (it was a bit too pink for me), but I liked the texture, smell, and even taste of it (it wasn’t waxy like some others). There was about 2 applications in here.

And the best part? COUPONS. Excellent coupons, including this one for 3$ off a Revlon product. They don’t expire until the end of August, and they’re all pretty high value. There were a lot in there, one for each of the products in the bag and several others as well. And best of ALL – Target’s coupon policy lets you pair up one Target coupon and one manufacturer’s coupon on any item you buy. There is one in here for 3$ off 2 Cover Girl products, which I am pairing next time I go shopping with a 2$ off 2 Cover Girl products coupon from the manufacturer (obtained from the P&G BrandSaver) to score a whopping 5$ off.

I’m not being compensated in any way for this post. I’m just sharing my thoughts. Hope you enjoyed them!

Do you like free samples? Do you use coupons? Let’s talk about freebies!