Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Topbox October 2012....where are the "real" deluxe samples???

I was so unenthusiastic about the October 2012 Tobox that I put it off until the very end of the month to bother writing about the contents.
My first thoughts on opening the Topbox were where are the deluxe samples, well more like there was 2 deluxe samples and two samples I can get for free at the store.

October 2012 Topbox contents!

Topbox description card

*Aveda Invati shampoo and conditioner (sample size 10ml tube each, value $2.70/ full size 200ml, $27)
One of the so-called deluxe samples was the Aveda Invati shampoo and conditioner- each sample is a cute little tube.......and only 10ml??
Aveda is known for being very environmental- yet these tiny samples are over-packaged in a cardboard box with a long flap that folds out and more written papers inside. I guess I can recycle the cardboard, but the shampoo and conditioner sample- what is supposed to be a deluxe size is just 10ml and I have gotten so many free hair product packets that size and bigger for free.
I have not yet gotten around to trying these hair samples, but will do so today and update later!

This afternoon I did get around to trying the Aveda Invati shampoo and conditioner.
The shampoo smelled nice, but really dried out my hair. There is one more use left in the small tube. The shampoo was also quite liquid compared to what I usually use.
The conditioner was thicker and did moisturize well. But there was almost not enough conditioner to do my whole hair. My hair was untangled and the scent of the conditioner did last a few hours.
I would consider buying the conditioner, but really did not like the shampoo.

*MaskerAide: hydrating facial sheet mask (full size, one mask/ value, $4.99)
These kind of sheet masks are very popular in places like Korea and many Asian countries.
My sister has actually brought me a few of these sheet masks over the years from China,Japan,Korea.
I also see these masks at the Korean grocery that I go to, but never think to pick one up.
This kind of mask is like a sheet with the cut outs for your eyes and mouth that you leave on as a concentrated spa treatment.
The mask from MaskerAide that I received was "All Nighter: Awaken,Replenish &Refresh".
I have not yet used this,but will get around to using this week.

*Stila eyeshadow palette: In the Garden (size: ?a paper palette with 10 one or two use samples, value: ?maybe $2.00 at most).
This was a neat sample to receive but,I do not consider this a deluxe sample when I can go to the store and get this for free. I might have been more ok with this is they sent more than one kind of Stila palette to try- like blush,concealer or whatever else they had.
Still this is a cool idea for sampling and a very sanitary way of trying samples. It would be nice if more stores had this for testing cosmetics as I never use the testers in the stores on my face (who knows what germs are there....).
I should be able to get two uses out of each eyeshadow colour if I use a makeup brush to apply.
Unfortunately I can not use any eye makeup right now for a few more weeks,so this will have to wait.

*Stila: Prime Pot in Taffy. (sample size 2ml, value $15.00/ full size 3.3ml, $26).
The Stila Prime Pot can be worn like an eyeshadow or as a primer/base for other eye colours.
I received a light beige shade that looks like it could be used by quite a few people.
Normally I prefer a eye base that is clear and do have a brand I usually use (Mavala eye base).
I'm not able to test out this product at the moment as I can not use any eye products for a little while.

The verdict:

Overall I was pleased with the value of this topbox, but still disappointed that two of the samples you can get for free.
The value of the topbox was around $25- considering I paid $10 that is still a good deal.
I am still going to stick with Topbox for now as I did enjoy all my earlier boxes.
If the price is raised I'll have to reconsider.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

L'Oreal owns what???!!!

This isn't really a review post, but more in response to some comments I read online.
A few people on some social sites were saying  they do not use certain brands because of what company owns them.
That got me to look up some info online and I found this very informative!
I had no idea that L'Oreal owned so many different brands. But I did know that most of the large cosmetic brands are owned by only a couple of the large companies.

Here is the list of what L'Oreal owns:


We want people everywhere to have easy access to our products through a presence in outlets that match their individual lifestyles.

L'Oréal Paris
Maybelline New York
CCB Paris 

L'Oréal Professionnel
Shu Uemura Art of Hair
Keraskin Esthetics

Helena Rubinstein
Shu Uemura 
Giorgio Armani 
Ralph Lauren
Viktor & Rolf
YSL Beauté
Maison Martin Margiela
Stella McCartney

La Roche Posay


Hopefully you have found this list informative!
I will try and find out about who owns other brands and add to this list soon.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Glymm October 2012 box with Bonus Nail Polish!

I just received my Glymm box earlier this week!
In September (and now again) Glymm has a promotion where if you sign up for the year at $10.00 per month and use a special code they will add a full size nail polish to each monthly box.
Now I thought this was a neat idea and my next thought was "I hope they do not send Ocean brand nail polish".
Previously I had received on of the Ocean brand polishes and could not find any info at all on this company or brand. I am fine with receiving products I have never heard of as long as they have a website where you can get more info and order the product.

Now on to the rest of my box and what I was sent for October 2012:

Glymm Oct 2012

*Miss Jessies: Baby Buttercreme (received 60ml jar, "full size"/value $9.00)

On the Glymm website this product is written up as "ULTRA HYDRATING HAIRDRESS FOR DRY PARCHED KINKS AND CURLS."
It also seems to be aimed more for people with ethnic hair, cornrows and "natural hair". Usually that means it is for African-American people. In the US I always see this brand sold with the hair relaxers and "ethnic" hair products. This is why I am quite surprised that Glymm even sent this out.
Usually I do use some hair products for African-American people as I have very dry hair, but have never put this down in any profile.
I have always been curious to try this line out, but when I went to Target I always end up getting the Curls brand line as that is my favorite and silicone and mineral oil free.
Looking at the Miss Jessies Baby Buttercream the first ingredients are Water, Petrolatum, Mineral Oil!
I am still going to try the product out this week.

So far I just tried a bit on my hand and it is quite moisturizing and has a very light vanilla powdery kind of scent. The scent is not very strong, which is good as I do not like overly scented hair.
I will update once I try this hair cream for a few days.....

*Cyber Derm: Every Morning Sun Whip SPF 25 (sample 10ml tube, value $9.00/ full size 50ml, $38.00)
Cyber Derm again?? At least it is not the same item as before and this packaging is more useful.
I like the Cyber Derm products, so do not mind getting their samples!
Last time I received two Cyber Derm samples in some cool looking lab syringes. Not as useful for travel,but it was a neat presenation (I had gotten night cream and the H20 cream).
So far I have only tried the Sun Whip on my hand and it is very light. I am going to use it today and this weekend and report back on that.
Usually I use mineral sunscreen and this one is supposed to be a mix of mineral and "regular" sunscreen ingredients with a mat finish (  15% Zinc Oxide (ZinClearTM), 7.5% Octinoxate (Encapsulated)).
Another plus is that this is a Canadian company!!

*Cyber Derm: H20 Hydration (sample 10ml tube, value $12.00/ full size 50ml, $60.00).

This is a sample I already got from Glymm earlier.
I did really like it and found it very moisturizing, but did not use the product long enough to see any of the extra benefits. My skin is quite sensitive and I had no issues with the Cyber Derm products and will buy some in the future!

*Femme Couture Lightning Lash mascara (full size 11.3g, value $8.99 US).
I have never heard of this brand before and see it being sold at Sally Beauty supply online.is
The mascara claims to make extreme, non-clumping lashes.
I can not test out any eye products for a few weeks, so this will have to wait.

*Lash Card (sample 2 cards, value $1.50/ full size 10 cards, $6.99).
This is a neat idea, but am not sure I really "need" this.
The product is a card shaped like your eye and each card is individually wrapped in plastic.
I am not sure they really need to be wrapped with so much plastic.
I'm sure this product works quite well, but again...not using eye makeup right now so this has to wait!


*Johnson's baby oil (travel size 88ml, value?? $2.00)

Glymm sent a travel bottle of Johnson's Baby oil to promote their new subscription service GLYMM MAMA!!! coming soon......
Seems most people missed reading the sticker on the bottle and wondered why?? they were sent baby oil.

That is just too funny.

*Sari by Ocean nail polish (full size 15ml, value?? $8.00)
Glymm recently had an offer where if you signed up for the year at $10.00 per month and used a special signup code they would send you a full size nail polish in each box/bag. This is addition to the 4 or 5 samples you get each month.
I was already paying $10 a month and liked most of my boxes, so this was a pretty easy decision to make!
My second thought before signing up was "I hope I do not get an of those % %%^^**** Ocean nail polish".
Well, of course what was I sent.......Ocean nail polish.
My issues with this company are that they claim to be a premium salon brand, yet there is no info online about them and no colour charts to be found anywhere.
The only place to buy a couple of the colours is on the Glymm website.
How can this company claim to have at least 80 different  shades when there is no info about them online??

The only contact info I can find is:


On top of this "they" can not spell Montreal properly. Their listing spells it as " Montyreal".
Well, at least Canada is spelled properly.

Now a bit more about the quality of the polish I was sent.
The colour is called "872 WITH ABANDON".
There is no ingredient listing or contact info on the bottle, yet the company claims this polish is "does not contain harmful chemicals"?
The polish is also quite thin and it took me 3 coats to get a decent look where you could not see my nails underneath.
In the bottle the polish looked very nice-at first it looked like a dark brown with copper shimmer. But once applied the colour was more a dull black with copper shimmer. It was also hard to see the shimmer on my fingers and it looked more like black polish.

Sari by Ocean polish 872 WITH ABANDON

with better lighting,under a lamp.

It really is quite disappointing when this nail polish looks nothing like in the bottle.
Also, before I forget- I was sent a Ocean brand nail polish (same company) in my Glymm box this spring. The cap on the polish looked like it was old, discolored and sitting out in the sun.
The nail polish was a metalic red that looked ok in the bottle,but did not go on nicely at all.
I will try to dig up a photo or my post about that soon.
Receiving this polish has annoyed me enough that it deserves its own post and I will compare the polish against my other black ones.
Hopefully I will not be getting any more of this brand in my Glymm boxes!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Glossybox Canada September 2012 Review!

I received this Glossybox a little while ago and just did not get around to posting my review, with fall being here there are a lot of things to do and updating my blog was put aside for a bit!
But now here is the September 2012 Glossybox!
This month's box was a nice surprise and had two full size items.

Contents of the September 2012 Glossybox:

The theme for this box was the red carpet, fashion week(s) and movie festivals.
What was sent in the box does a pretty good job of achieving this, mostly because there was a makeup palette that is based on the movie The Dark Shadows.

The Theme Description!

September 2012 Canada Glossybox items!

*Wella Professionals Mirror Polish Shine Serum (full size item 40ml, value $16.99).
This is a full size item! I have used a lot of the Wella line in the past- from styling products to their professional hair colour (Colour Charm) and really like the quality of everything I've used.
Due to my having tons of hair products, I have not yet had the time to try this shine serum.
The packaging says you apply this to dry hair and that it gives a precious shine with the hold being "level 1".
The presentation for the hair serum is very nice and it comes in a glass bottle- the only downside to that is it might be a bit heavy for your gym bag and you might be afraid if you drop this somewhere.

*B Kamins Lip Balm SPF 20 (sample tube 4ml, value $5.25/ full size 15ml, $21).
I have gotten a sample of this product before (last year from a cosmetics website) and did find it nice!
I was expecting the balm to have a maple scent or taste and the balm does not have a taste or scent.
The lip balm did moisturize well and the packaging is good for keeping in your pocket or small bag.
What confuses me the most is the sample does not say SPF 20 on it, even though the full size product does have that printed on the tube.

*B Kamins Maple Body Lotion (sample tube 12ml, value $2.73/ full size 180ml, $41)
My first impression of this sample is how small the tube is 12ml is not really much for a body product.
I also expected the lotion to have some kind of maple scent or maybe vanilla or unscented- but the lotion has this kind of floral powdery scent I am not a fan of.
The lotion is also much thinner than I expected,but it did absorb quickly into my hands and that would be good for daytime.
Now my hands are extremely dry and I can still see a lot of dry spots on my fingers. I need a product that is a bit richer for my hands. This lotion would be good for spring and summer.
I do like the Glossybox mentioned that this company is a Canadian brand!

*NYX Cosmetics: The Crimson Amulet makeup palette inspired by the movie Dark Shadows!
This is one of my favorite items in the Glossybox! A full sized NYX makeup palette with a value of $25!

I really like the presentation for the makeup case, it looks just like a DVD cover.
My mother saw this product and actually thought that I had received a movie in the mail!.
I have not been able to use any eye makeup, but the eyeshadows are quite pigmented (tried on my hand).
Another plus is that there are many neutral colours, so this could be used every day.
In the palette there is 24 eye shadows- one section is more shimmery and the other more matte.There is also 5 blushes, a highliter, 4 lip gloss, a black liquid eye liner and a small HD shadow base.
The blushes are quite pigmented, my only issue is there is no small brush in the kit to apply blush or highlighter with and I have to carry something separately. Same for the lip glosses.
I did try the liquid liner on my hand and it dries quite quickly with a strong black line and did not smudge.
The only issues I have with this palette is no small brush for the blush and that the outside packaging had a nice chart with what all the products are and it would have been nice to have that on the back of the palette.
(my solution will be to cut the packaging and tape the image from there to the back of my palette).

Back of Packaging for NYX Palette

*Bonus item: Dove Cleartone antiperspirant: (travel size 17g, value $2/full size 45g, $4.99).
I have not had the chance to test this out, but the antiperspirant sounds interesting.
It is supposed to make the skin of your underarms look renewed.
I don't have any underarm skin issues and was only going to test this out at my dance classes next week.
There is no scent written on the packaging, but the product does have a clean soapy smell.There is also calendula and sunflower seed extracts, so this sounds like it would be good for you.

*There was also an invitation for an event in Toronto that was called The Art of Fashion,but that is kind of far for me to travel. There was info about their Facebook group and the Glossybox info card states that it is a non-profit organization that supports up-and-coming Canadian fashion.

My thoughts on the September 2012 Canada Glossybox:

Overall I am quite pleased with the assortment of items that was included in my Glossybox.

The only issue I have is that the way the info card is printed it is not clear if you should get 2 hair products or only one. Other beauty subscriptions usually have a small note stating you only receive one of the products.
From Facebook and online comments many people seemed very confused about this and contacted Glossybox through their Facebook site.
The value of the products was also great considering I paid $15 for this box!
The contents are worth: $51.97!!

Did you or anyone you know receive this box? What did you think?
Also what kinds of looks did you create with the NYX makeup?
Comments are welcome!