Glossybox Review, April 2017

Glossybox, $21 per month for US version (has many international versions)

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Little Melba matches the Glossybox so well!

Glossybox is a beauty box that sends subscribers five to six products each month.  The samples are often full size or deluxe sample size.  You tend to get more skincare than makeup in this box, but there is always a mix.  Glossybox used to send mostly higher end brands, but their boxes for the past year have included a lot of brands I've never heard of.  Glossybox likes to include products from European brands that don't sell their products in the U.S., so, if there is a product I really like, I may not be able to buy it.  There is a lot of product variation, so some subscribers receive boxes that are worth much more than those other subscribers receive.

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Here's what was in my April Glossybox:

The value of the April Glossybox was about $61.29.  As Glossybox has not released the brand of the "Beauty Shampoo and Conditioner" yet, I had to estimate the value.  It's not the highest value Glossybox, but we did get a lot of stuff!  We got three makeup products, two hair products, a skincare product, a body product, a perfume, and a bath product, so we had a lot of variety this month.

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Swatches of ColourPop Ultra Matte Lip in Airplane Mode (left) and Thursday (right)

Swatches of ColourPop Ultra Matte Lip in Airplane Mode (left) and Thursday (right)

First up, we have the ColourPop Cosmetics Ultra Matte Lip in Thursday and Airplane Mode.  I've heard lots of great things about ColourPop's Ultra Matte Lip, but I had never tried them, so I was looking forward to getting not one, but two, in the box.  I loved the color Thursday, which ColourPop calls a "brilliant red violet." It was a very flattering color that was bold, but not too bold.  I couldn't believe how well it held up.  Its staying power isn't quite at the level of OCC Matte Lip Tar, but it's very close, and this product is less than half the price.  Sadly, Airplane Mode, which ColourPop describes as a "dirty peach," wasn't for me at all.  I hate the nude lip trend.  It looks great on some people, but it isn't for me.  I need some bright color.

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Vasanti's Brighten Up! is one of those products that you are bound to see at some point if you subscribe to beauty boxes.  It's a fantastic product, though, so I don't mind getting another sample of it.  This is an exfoliating and brightening cleanser.  It makes my skin feel soft and smooth and look radiant.  This is on the gritty side, so if you have very sensitive skin, this might not be the product for you.

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Subscribers got either a cheap Jafra perfume or this cute perfume mini of Vince Camuto's Ciao.  I was so happy I got this one.  The bottle is just adorable.  It's both fruity and floral and the perfect daytime spring and summer perfume.  It has okay staying power, but I found I had to reapply halfway through the day.  Vince Camuto describes Ciao as having top notes of Tango mandarin, Italian mandarin, pink grapefruit, wild strawberry, and blackberry, mid notes of rose, peony, muguet, Italian honeysuckle, jasmine, and passionflower, and base notes of
amber, cashmeran, amaro liquor, vanilla, sandalwood, patchouli, and sylkolide.  That's a lot of notes for one fragrance!  They all work together well, though, and make a beautiful perfume.

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I've gotten Gilchrist and Soames' BeeKind products before and thought they were okay.  The company donates part of the proceeds to a honey bee research program.  The shower gel and the body lotion both have a fresh lemon verbena scent that I love.  The lotion is on the thin side, but it's a good, lightweight lotion for the summer.  The shower gel works well. 

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I loved Doucce's Boombastic Lash Volumizer Mascara, so I had high hopes for their Maxlash Volumizer Mascara.  The formula itself is okay -- it gave me some length and a good amount of volume -- but the spoolie is big and unwieldy.  It made it really hard to apply the mascara with the brush it came with.  I'd recommend skipping this mascara and going for the Boombastic.

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Finally, we have the Beauty Shampoo and Conditioner.  Glossybox wanted subscribers to try these and review them without knowing the brand.  They will reveal the brand at the end of the month.  Glossy says it is a familiar brand with a new formula.  I'm pretty sure it is Head and Shoulders.  It has a soft, fruity scent to it that I really liked.  It did a fine job washing and conditioning my hair, but it didn't do a better job than my regular products.  

Overall, I'm happy with my April Glossybox.  It's one of the better Glossyboxes I've gotten recently.  My favorite product was the ColourPop Ultra Matte Lip in Thursday, but Vince Camuto's Ciao came in a close second.  The mascara wasn't for me, but I liked everything else.

What did you think of this month's Glossybox?  Which lip colors did you get?  I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Play! by Sephora Review, April 2017

Play! by Sephora, $10 per month (US only)

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Melba is such a natural model!  She liked that the Play! box matched her.  

Play! is Sephora's monthly beauty box.  At $10 per month, it is very affordable.  All of the products can be found at your local Sephora, so, if you really like something, it's easy to get more.  Each month, subscribers receive a makeup bag, a mix of five makeup, skincare, and hair care products, plus one perfume sample.  Sephora customizes the boxes somewhat based on profiles you fill out upon subscribing.  You also receive a card that will get you fifty extra Beauty Insider points with any purchase at a Sephora and an invitation to a Play Date, which is an event held at select Sephoras for subscribers to go and learn more about the products in that month's box.  Unfortunately, there are very few stores that have the Play Date, so you may not have one in your area.  There is a waiting list for this subscription, but they open it up every month or two.

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Here's what I got this month:

My April Play! was worth $40.05.  That's pretty average for a Play! box.  This month's theme was Step it Up!, and it was about upgrading your everyday beauty routine.  We got two makeup products, three skincare products, and a perfume.  This was a little lighter on makeup than usual, but it's nice to have a little change.  This month's bag wasn't my favorite.  It was the white cotton again, which I hate because it's for makeup and it's going to get stained the first minute you use it, and it had a redhead on it with "The Best Things in Life Are Me!" printed below her.

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The Sephora Collection Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover is a good, basic makeup remover.  It gets all your eye makeup off without a lot of scrubbing.  Besides removing makeup, it's also supposed to strengthen your lashes and hydrate your skin.  This works well, but it's kind of boring and not what I'm really hoping to get in my Play! subscription.  I've gotten it in a box before.

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Next up, we have the Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.  I got the pore minimizing version of this primer in the July Play! and other subscribers in July got this exact primer, so I was surprised to see it again.  Besides already seeing this product in Play!, I can't count how many samples I've gotten of this primer.  I think I've gotten it in most subscription boxes at this point.  I like the pore minimizing version of this primer, but I've never liked this version.  It is silicone-based and it feels like I have a thick layer of it over my skin and that my makeup is floating above it.  It doesn't feel like it blends in at all, just that a layer of it sits there on top of my skin.  Lots of people love this primer, so you might well like it.  My skin is combination, bordering on oily, and I think people with dry skin have better luck with this primer.  

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Swatch of Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil Waterproof Eyeliner in M-10 Matte Black

Swatch of Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil Waterproof Eyeliner in M-10 Matte Black

Sephora loves to send us black eyeliner!  The Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil in M-10 Matte Black goes on smoothly, stays on, and doesn't budge.  I was surprised by how well it worked.  I loved the formula, but I wish we had gotten a different color.

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Peter Thomas Roth's Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream is a lightweight moisturizer.  It's supposed to moisturize your skin, smooth out your skin's texture, and fight signs of aging.  The cream is quite thin and absorbs quickly.  While I wouldn't use this as an overnight moisturizer in the winter, this is the perfect daytime moisturizer for the summer.

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Kate Somerville's ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliator is another product you'll see somewhat regularly in subscription boxes (although nowhere near as much as Smashbox primer).  This is a gritty green gel that looks kind of gross, but it gives you some serious exfoliation that makes your skin so soft and smooth.  This is popular for a reason and I'm always happy to get another sample as it's quite expensive.

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Marc Jacobs' Daisy Eau de Toilette is a classic perfume that I've gotten in boxes several times.  It's a fruity floral with notes of strawberry, violet leaves, jasmine, and white woods.  This is a nice perfume that lasts all day, but it's not my favorite scent.  

The April Play! was a bit of a disappointment.  I get subscription boxes to discover new products, but four of the six products were products I've tried before.  Sephora has been pretty good about putting new items in Play!, but this month and last month, they've included classic products that most of their consumers have already tried.  Play! subscribers tend to be Sephora fans who have tried a lot of different products (and Sephora is always generous with samples), so it would be smart of them to include newly released products instead of products that have been around for years.  I liked the products in the April box for the most part, but I wanted to try something new.  My favorite product this month was the MUFE eyeliner, just because I hadn't tried that before.

What did you think of the April Play! by Sephora?  

Goodbeing Review, April 2017

Goodbeing, $21.95 per month (free shipping to US; add $9 for addresses in Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand)

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Melba is a natural when it comes to modeling!  She loves Goodbeing because it is a cruelty-free box.

Goodbeing is a monthly natural beauty box.  Subscribers fill out extensive profiles upon subscribing.  Each month, you'll get four to five products.  Besides the expected makeup, hair care, and skincare products, you also sometimes get health foods and supplements.  Goodbeing recently began allowing subscribers to choose one to two products per month.  You don't have to choose any products if you don't want, but it's nice to have the option.  The one thing I find annoying about Goodbeing is that you get small product information cards for each product instead of one big card that has all the products on it.  They get lost easily.  I understand, though, that that helps make it so that Goodbeing can personalize boxes more easily, so I'm okay with it as I'd rather have a personalized box than one big card.

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Here's what I got this month:

My April Goodbeing was worth $51, which is almost 2.5 times the cost of the box.  This month, I got two dental care products, two skincare products, a nail polish, and a lip balm.  Goodbeing has been going really light on makeup lately.  I would like to see them include more makeup in the boxes again.  

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First up, we have Good Medicine's Clarity Awakening Face Cream.  I've gotten a few Good Medicine products over the last few months and I liked them for the most part.  Clarity is a thick moisturizer that has a strong but pleasant scent to it.  The moisturizer is supposed to reduce redness and inflammation, and heal, protect, hydrate, brighten, and firm the skin.  This was hydrating but non-greasy and absorbed quickly.  It wasn't my favorite moisturizer, but it's a good one.

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One of my product choices for April was Londontown Lakur Enhanced Colour in Chuffed to Bits.  They also offered the colors Camden Chic, an orange crème, and Teatime, a nude crème, as options.  Chuffed to Bits, a periwinkle crème, isn't what I would normally wear on my nails, but I didn't have any colors quite like it.  I liked the color more than I expected.  It looked pretty on my nails and it held up for a couple of days without chipping, which is good for me.

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I got the American Provenance Lip Balm in Grapefruit several months ago and liked it, so I made the lip balm in Cardamom one of my sample choices for April.  This has a spicy sweet scent to it that I really liked.  It is a little gritty for a lip balm, but it still works well. 

I wouldn't have chosen the lip balm as a sample choice, but the sample options for April weren't all that impressive.  I've found that to be the case a lot lately with Goodbeing.  They started sample choice in the late summer and, during the first few months, there were lots of fabulous options and it was hard to choose.  The past few months, though, nothing has really stood out.  In fact, for May, I made one sample choice, but I didn't choose a second product as none of the other options appealed to me.  I'll probably still get one of the products that I didn't choose.

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The Noctua-Diem Orange and Neroli Balancing Face Mist is a toner that is meant for oily and combination skin.  The neroli scent is pretty strong.  I didn't like neroli for quite a while, but the scent has been growing on me, which is good as I've gotten a lot of neroli products lately!  This toner made my skin feel tight and didn't dry my skin out.  It's great for oil control.  The only ingredients are orange essential oil, juniper berry essential oil, and neroli floral water.  If you like neroli, you'll love this toner.

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Finally, we had two packets of Masigi Pulling Oil, one in Boost and one in Fresh.  Pulling oil, if you aren't familiar, is oil you swish around in your mouth for five to thirty minutes (you are supposed to start at 5 minutes and slowly build up the amount of time you swish) and then spit it out. It is meant to clean your teeth and improve gum health.  Both of the packets contain organic virgin coconut oil.  The Boost contains grapefruit, ginger, cinnamon, and peppermint, and is supposed to stimulate your metabolism.  The Fresh contains peppermint and spearmint oils to freshen your breath. I know a lot of people love pulling oil, but it is just not for me.  I just can't swish something around in my mouth for so long.  The taste was okay, but not my favorite.

This wasn't the best Goodbeing I've gotten.  When I started subscribing to Goodbeing last June, I got some great boxes, but the past few months have been a little disappointing.  I used to think that Goodbeing paid a lot of attention to my profile that I filled out and selected appropriate products for me, but I haven't felt like that lately.  I don't hate the box, but it isn't as good as the Goodbeings I used to get.  I liked all the products except the pulling oil, but I didn't love any of them -- they were good, but not great.

What did you think of the April Goodbeing box?  Did you get similar products?  Do you feel that Goodbeing has been paying attention to your profile and choosing the perfect products for you?

Birchbox Review, April 2017

Birchbox, $10 per month (US only)

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Rosita is such a little sweetheart!  She really doesn't like to hold still to model in the boxes, though!

Birchbox is one of the most popular beauty boxes.  At $10 per month, it's also one of the most affordable.  Subscribers receive five to six products each month.  Birchbox has you fill out a profile when you subscribe, which they supposedly use to choose the products for your box.  You usually get more skincare than makeup samples and the sample sizes tend to be on the small side.  Each month, Birchbox gives subscribers the option of choosing a product for the following month's box, choosing the curated box, or leaving everything to surprise.  They offer three to five different samples to choose from and sometimes the samples are the same type of product (e.g., different types of mascara or moisturizer), sometimes they are the same product in different colors, and sometimes the products are completely unrelated.  If you choose the curated box, you know exactly what you'll be getting, so there are no surprises with that one, but, if you like everything in that box, it's worth it.  I find that the curated boxes usually ship earlier in the month and often have high values. 

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Here's what was in my April Birchbox:

My April Birchbox was worth $26.61, which isn't extraordinarily high, but it's pretty average for a Birchbox.  I got one hair care product, a bath product, two skincare products, and a makeup item, so there was a good variety of products this month.  I chose the Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Cream as my product choice for April.  This month's box had a plain outside and just said Magic Inside on the cover.  On the inside was a pretty floral print.  It was a little different.  I liked it.

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The Michael Todd Blue Green Algae Antibacterial Toner is alcohol-free and contains aloe to moisturize your skin.  Its scent is a little strange.  It didn't bother me, but I know the scent won't be for everyone.  The toner is supposed to kill bacteria, fight signs of aging, draw out impurities, help your skin heal faster, keep your oil in check without drying out your skin, and reduce inflammation.  That's a lot of stuff for one little toner to do!  I liked how it made my skin feel clean but not overly dry.  It seemed to help some with redness and it helped me take care of a mini breakout quickly.  I really liked this toner.

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Shower bombs, if you aren't familiar, are supposed to be put under the water in the shower but not right next to the drain.  The water melts the bomb, which makes your shower smell amazing.  It's quite similar to a bath bomb (and these could probably be used as bath bombs if you wanted), but they're probably not going to be as moisturizing as a bath bomb would be as they are meant for aromatherapy.  The water they dissolve in goes right down the drain, so it won't do much for your skin.  The Level Naturals Organic Menthol and Lavender Shower Bomb is supposed to clear sinuses with the menthol and relax you with the lavender.  The menthol scent was very strong and overpowered the lavender.  I liked it, but I would have liked this even more when I had a cold.  

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No. 4 hair care products are pretty common in Birchbox.  I think this is my first time trying their Smoothing Balm.  You apply this balm to wet hair, then let it dry.  This left my hair smoother and softer, so I quite liked it.  It's supposed to be great for frizz, but my hair doesn't get frizzy, so I can't speak to that.  I was quite impressed with the results I got, though.

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I love Dr. Jart+, a Korean skincare company, but I had never tried their Cicapair Tiger Grass Cream.  I was excited when I saw it was one of the April sample choices.  This is a moisturizer that is supposed to even out complexion and fight acne.  This cream seemed to reduce redness and help my breakout heal faster.  I love that Birchbox put the Michael Todd toner in the box with this as I think they worked well together.

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Swatch of The Beauty Crop GRLPWR Liquid Lipstick in Imma Bawse

Swatch of The Beauty Crop GRLPWR Liquid Lipstick in Imma Bawse

The final product this month was The Beauty Crop's GRLPWR Lipstick in Imma Bawse.  This is a matte liquid lipstick that has amazing pigment and excellent staying power.  I was quite impressed with the formula.  It contains vitamin E and shea butter, so, unlike many matte lipsticks, it isn't drying.  The color was beautiful on me and I got a lot of compliments.  This is only the second The Beauty Crop product I've tried, but I am a fan of the brand now.  The first product I tried from them was their PBJ Smoothie Stick, which was a regular lipstick.  While I liked that product, I love this one.

I'm really happy with my April Birchbox!  I liked everything in the box.  I can't even pick a favorite.  My three favorite products were the Michael Todd toner, the Dr. Jart+ cream, and The Beauty Crop lipstick, but I quite liked the No. 4 Smoothing Balm and the Level Naturals shower bombs, too.  This is one of my favorite Birchboxes!

What did you get in your April Birchbox?  Did you like your box as much as I liked mine?

Mommy Mailbox Review, April 2017

Mommy Mailbox, $33.95 per month (free shipping to US; ships to Canada for $10.50 extra)

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Little Melba is growing up too fast!  

Mommy Mailbox is a monthly box of beauty products, home goods, and snacks.  Don't let the name scare you away -- this isn't just for moms!  I've never seen anything in the box that could be used only by mothers.  The box reminds me a little bit of PopSugar in that it's more of a lifestyle box than a beauty box.  Each month, Mommy Mailbox has a different mom blogger curate the box.  All subscribers receive the same products

Mommy Mailbox sent me this box free of charge for review.

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Here's what I got this month:

My April Mommy Mailbox was worth about $76.94.  Wellsmith isn't selling their products online currently, so I had to estimate the value of the lip balm.  That's more than double the price of the box, so I am very happy with the value.  This month's curator was Karrie Locher and the theme was Recharge. 

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First up, we have the Graphique de France Copper Marble Flat Thank You Notes.  These are just flat cards, but you could write on the front and back.  The envelopes are turquoise and white and are quite pretty.  I love the style of these cards and can't believe it's only $15 for 50 of them.  They are of great quality.

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Next up, we have the Cultivar Organic Rose and Helichrysum Toner.  I've gotten a Cultivar moisturizer and dry shampoo before, but this is my first time trying their toner.  This toner is free of alcohol and witch hazel, so it is non-drying.  It is supposed to be balancing for both oily and dry skin. The rose in it is supposed to minimize redness and the helichrysum is to speed healing and reduce scarring.  This had a floral scent to it that wasn't as rosy as I expected, but I liked it.  It helped reduce my oiliness without making my skin overly dry.  I love this toner.

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The Viter Energy Caffeine Mints are wintergreen flavored.  They taste pretty good, but energy supplements aren't really my thing.  Each mint contains about the same amount of caffeine as half a cup of coffee, so you can eat just one if you need a little extra energy, and a few if you need more.  While these aren't something I'll use, I like that each mint has a small amount of caffeine so you can take only as much as you need.

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I've seen a few Wellsmith products in boxes recently, but, sadly, they don't seem to be selling anything on their Etsy shop currently.  Perhaps they are concentrating on bulk orders.  I love their products, so I hope they start selling stuff again soon.  I got the lip balm in blackberry, but Mommy Mailbox subscribers could receive a variety of flavors.  It was more of a scent than a flavor, really.  The balm didn't have much taste to it, but it did have a lovely blackberry scent.  Blackberries are some of my favorite fruit, so I was happy I got this one!  This lip balm is very hydrating.

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The final product was the Fred and Far The Future is Bright Pin.  The pin looks like a trillion-cut diamond.  It's pretty cute.  I'm not much of a pin wearer, but I will wear this occasionally.  There aren't many pins I'll wear, but I quite like this one and will actually wear it.

This was a fun month for Mommy Mailbox!  The caffeine mints weren't for me, but I loved everything else in the box.  It's hard to choose a favorite as I liked the pin, the thank you cards, the toner, and the lip balm so much!  I don't think I can choose a favorite as they are all so fun and different.  Mommy Mailbox put together a fabulous April box!

Kloverbox Review, April 2017

Kloverbox, $25 per month (US only)

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Rosita loved the blue and green sizzle for Earth Day! 

Kloverbox is a monthly beauty and lifestyle box that focuses on natural products made by small companies.  Each month, Kloverbox has a loose theme and sends subscribers a mix of four to six beauty products, home goods, cleaning products, and/or pieces of jewelry.  This is a great way to discover small businesses that you probably wouldn't encounter on your own.  All subscribers get the same products with occasional color and/or scent variations. 

Kloverbox sent me this box free of charge for review.  The link above is my affiliate link.

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Here's what came in my April Kloverbox:

My April Kloverbox was worth $52.94, which isn't bad for a $25 natural lifestyle box.  This month's theme was Happy Earth Day!  We had two beauty products (one for hair, one for skin), a bracelet, and a kitchen item, so it was a good mix for the month.  

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First up, we have the Elements of Aliel No. 2 Peace Cleanser.  I wasn't familiar with Elements of Aliel, so I was looking forward to trying their product.  The No. 2 Peace Cleanser is made with African black soap, glycerine, chamomile, dandelion, and yarrow.  It's supposed to remove your makeup, cleanse your skin without drying it out, and fight inflammation so you can have beautiful, clear skin.  The earthy scent wasn't my favorite, but my skin felt clean and looked great after using this.  It helped me clear up a breakout quickly.  

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I've gotten MudLOVE's products in boxes before and I'm a fan!  For each bracelet bought, MudLOVE donates money for a week's worth of clean water for someone in the Central African Republic.  The bracelets are made of clay and have messages stamped into them.  They are strung on an elastic band.  We got the Be the Change bracelet.  It's not really my style, but it's well-made and for a great cause, so I will give it to someone who would love it.

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The AvoSeedo allows you to grow an avocado plant without piercing the seed with toothpicks.  The seed has a better chance of growing into a strong, healthy plant when it hasn't been stabbed.  This floats in water with the seed in the middle. We put an avocado seed in a few days ago, but haven't seen any sprouts quite yet.  It's a cute idea.  

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Zabana Essentials Dry Glow Shampoo in Shimmery is my favorite dry shampoo, so I was happy to get their dry shampoo in Lavender Citrus Mint.  While I like the subtle shimmeriness I get from the other Zabana Essentials dry shampoo, the Lavender Citrus Mint smells better.  The combination of lavender, citrus, and mint makes a surprisingly nice scent.  This dry shampoo works really well.  It sopped up the excess oil from my hair and didn't leave a white cast after I brushed it out.  This was definitely my favorite product this month!

The April Kloverbox was fabulous and perfect for Earth Day!  I liked everything in the box!  The Zabana Essentials Dry Shampoo was my favorite product, but the Elements of Aliel No. 2 Peace Cleanser came in a close second.  I'm not a big avocado person, but the AvoSeedo is a fun idea.  The MudLOVE bracelet isn't my style, but it's cute and of excellent quality.  This is one of the best Kloverboxes I've gotten.

What did you think of the April Kloverbox?

Petit Vour Review, April 2017

Petit Vour, $15 per month for US orders, $23 per month for Canadian orders, $25 per month for other international orders

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Melba is such a fabulous little model!  She wishes the Petit Vour box still had the bunnies on it, though.

Petit Vour is a vegan, cruelty-free beauty box.  Each month, subscribers get four sample size products.  They are often heavier on skincare than makeup, but there is always a mix.  Oftentimes, subscribers get the same products with some scent or color variation, but Petit Vour has had some box variations recently.  You can e-mail them to get a profile to fill out if you subscribe so that they can better customize your boxes. 

Petit Vour sent me this box free of charge for review.  The link above is my affiliate link.

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Here's what came in my April Petit Vour:

My April Petit Vour box was worth $38.62.  That's not bad for a $15 vegan beauty box!  We got a nail product, a skincare product, a makeup item, and a body product, so we had a great mix of stuff this month.  One product was full size and two were deluxe sample sizes!  

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I've tried a few French Girl Organics products in the past and liked them, so I was happy to see another on in my Petit Vour box.  You apply this cuticle oil to your cuticles and nail beds and it is supposed to make your nails healthier.  This comes in a cute, teeny rollerball, which makes it easy to apply.  This worked well, but the scent wasn't for me.  Petit Vour describes it as having a citrus-rose scent, so I thought I would love it, but I don't detect any citrus or rose in the scent.  It has more of an earthy scent to it.  The scent isn't horrible, but it's not great.  I will still use this, though -- the scent doesn't last all that long and I liked how it made my nails and cuticles look and feel.

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Swatch of Suntegrity 5-in-1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen in Fair

Swatch of Suntegrity 5-in-1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen in Fair

I've tried Suntegrity's 5-in-1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen before, but I had been sent a darker color.  I'm glad I was sent Fair this time, as it works much better for me.  This matched my skin well and gave me light, even coverage.  If you don't need full coverage foundation but just want your skin tone evened out a bit, this might work for that purpose.  I used it in the sun and didn't end up sunburned, so it worked well as a sunscreen, plus it was moisturizing.  I really liked this product! 

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Swatch of MarieNatie LoveMarie Lip Gloss in Tickled

Swatch of MarieNatie LoveMarie Lip Gloss in Tickled

Lip gloss is just something I've never liked and probably will never like.  The MarieNatie LoveMarie Lip Gloss had the sticky feeling I hate, so I ended up taking it off after a few minutes. It's quite sheer, but it did make my lips a shade pinker and gave me lots of shine.  The color is quite pretty.  If you like lip gloss, then you'll probably like this product.

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The final product this month was the Nubian Heritage Patchouli and Buriti Body Lotion.  I was worried as soon as I saw patchouli as I am not a patchouli fan.  Fortunately, this doesn't smell all that much like patchouli.  It must get most of its scent from the buriti.  I loved the scent of this, but it was way too strong!  This was much more strongly scented than most lotions and the scent lasted a very long time.  I wish they had toned down the scent a bit.  This was moisturizing and non-greasy, so I liked the results, but I think the scent will be too much for a lot of people.

The April Petit Vour box was okay.  It wasn't my favorite month from Petit Vour.  My favorite product this month was the Suntegrity sunscreen.  I liked the Nubian Heritage lotion and the French Girl Organics Cuticle Oil, but the scents of the two products were a little too much.  The MarieNatie lip gloss just wasn't for me.  I've never liked lip gloss because of the sticky feeling most glosses have, so it wasn't an issue with the MarieNatie lip gloss in particular, but rather lip gloss in general.  

What did you think of this month's Petit Vour box?  What did you think of the lotion and cuticle oil scents?

Terra Bella Box Review, April 2017

Terra Bella Box, $32.95 per month (free shipping for US addresses; see website for international shipping rates)

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Melba is such a photogenic little bun!  

Terra Bella Box is a monthly natural, cruelty-free beauty box that features products made by small businesses.  Subscribers receive three to four skincare, hair care, and/or bath products per month.  Terra Bella has started a second box, The Makeup Edit, so if you prefer makeup products to skincare, that might be the box for you.  Subscribers are able to switch back and forth between The Makeup Edit and Terra Bella subscriptions if they want.  The Makeup Edit is $29.95 per month, so it's a little cheaper than Terra Bella.  

Terra Bella Box sent me this box free of charge for review.

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Here's what I got in the April Terra Bella Box:

My April Terra Bella Box was worth $46.  That's not bad for a natural beauty box.  We got a hair product, a dental care product, a bath product, and a perfume, so we had a good mix of stuff this month.  

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First up, we had the Red Bird Natural Soap Sunkissed Shampoo Bar.  This bar has a blend of tea tree, rosemary, and lavender essential oils.  You wet your hair, then rub this on your hair, lather it up and rinse.  It doesn't take much -- I put way too much on at first because I didn't think much would get on my head by just rubbing it on there.  It didn't feel like it was completely out of my hair after rinsing it, but my hair was fine after conditioning and rinsing.  This was my first time using a shampoo bar, so I was a little nervous because it feels so weird to put what looks like a regular bar of soap in my hair.  It smells great and got my hair clean, though.  I would probably recommend this if you have dry or normal hair.  It might be a little too oily for greasier hair.  I was impressed with how this made my hair look.  I liked it a lot more than I thought I would.

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I'm familiar with Meraki Botanicals and have liked the products of theirs that I've tried, so I was looking forward to trying their Mint Clove Toothpaste.  This wasn't what I expected!  I thought it would have a paste-like consistency, but this is dry and hard.  I had to scrape it out with my finger and apply it to my toothbrush.  Most of it fell off the toothbrush at first because it is quite crumbly, but I got better at getting it on there after a few times.  It tastes mostly like baking soda.  The mint and clove flavors are there, but they are on the subtle side.  I like this, but I prefer the convenience of toothpaste in a tube.

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This is my first time trying a product from EcoSkin Naturals.  The Post Shave Gel is 90% aloe; the remaining 10% is a mix of peppermint, jojoba, and tea tree oils.  This is a very moisturizing oil that absorbed quickly and made my skin feel extra soft after shaving. I was worried that it would make my clothes greasy but it absorbed fast enough that that wasn't an issue.  I loved the fresh, minty scent.

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The Abbey Lane Farm Solid Perfume is a mix of bergamot, clary sage, neroli, ylang ylang and cedarwood.  I wasn't sure what I was going to think of this, but I ended up loving the scent.  It was perfect for spring.  I expected it to be a little more floral with a name like Spring Blossom, but the scent was still beautiful.  My only complaint is that this perfume doesn't have much in the way of staying power.  You'll have to reapply this a few times throughout the day.  I've always found that to be the case with solid perfumes, though, so I wasn't surprised by that.

April was an excellent month for Terra Bella Box.  My favorite product was the shampoo bar, but I liked the solid perfume and the post shave gel a lot, too.  The toothpaste wasn't really for me, but it wasn't bad.  All of the products were new to me and three of the four brands were new to me.  Terra Bella Box always puts together such fun boxes.  They're always a treat to get in the mail! 

ipsy Review, April 2017

ipsy, $10 per month (add $4.95 for Canadian orders)

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Rosita is just the cutest with one paw resting on the top of the bag and the other hanging down a bit.  Her ears are starting to go down.  My baby bun is growing up too fast!

ipsy is a monthly beauty subscription that costs only $10 per month.  Subscribers receive five items each month plus a cute makeup bag.  ipsy customizes the products based on subscriber profiles, but they tend to be heavier on makeup than skincare.  You'll get a mix of both drugstore and higher end brands in an ipsy bag.  Most items are deluxe sample size and occasionally even full size. 

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Here's what came in my April Glam Bag:

My April ipsy was worth $34.06.  This is definitely on the lower end of ipsy values, but it's still not bad for a $10 subscription.  The full size OFRA blush sells for $15, but their full size godet refills retail for $12.  They don't currently sell the godet version of the Peach pressed blush, but they have other colors of the pressed blush available for $12, so that is the value I used.  I got three full size items and two small samples.  Three of the products were makeup, one was skincare, and one was a beauty tool.  ipsy has a theme each month and this month's theme was Sideshow.  The theme applies more to the bag design than the products.  This month's bag is shaped like a ticket.  It's pretty cute.  All the pictures of it make it look bright red, but it is more of a reddish-orange that is somewhat muted.  I like how the ticket number is April 1, 2017 backwards.

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Swatch of OFRA Cosmetics Pressed Blush in Peach

Swatch of OFRA Cosmetics Pressed Blush in Peach

First up is the OFRA Cosmetics Pressed Plush in Peach.  It's the godet (or pan) only, not in the little plastic container, so you will have to stick it in a Z-palette.  I like this color a lot more than I expected.  It is a pale peach with tons of shimmer and it looked great on me.  This could be used as a highlighter if it is too pale for you to use as a blush.  It went on smoothly and was quite buildable so I could get a little extra color.  It held up all day.  OFRA usually isn't my favorite cosmetics company, but I really liked this blush.

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Touch in Sol is a Korean beauty company that I wasn't familiar with.  The No Poreblem! Primer is silicone-based, but it's creamier than most silicone-based primers.  A lot of silicone primers (e.g., Smashbox Photo Finish) feel like they are floating on my skin, so I try to avoid them.  While I wouldn't go out and buy this primer, No Poreblem! didn't make me feel like I had a layer of grease coating my face.  It does have a flattering blurring effect and my makeup stayed on all day over this primer.

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Glamour Dolls is putting out a Lisa Frank collection!  It's available for pre-order now, but it will be a few months before the products start shipping.  ipsy subscribers are some of the first people to get this brush!  The brush is soft and did a pretty good job applying my blush.  It's a $5 brush, so it's not the highest quality, but it gets the job done.  I love the unicorn and butterfly design.  If you're looking for a high quality makeup brush, this won't be for you, but if you want something cute and fun that reminds you of your fourth grade Trapper Keeper, be sure to pre-order some of the products from this collection.

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I love Skin & Co. Roma's Truffle Therapy line, so I am always happy to get another one of their products!  This is my first time trying the toner. Skin & Co. says this toner is supposed to cleanse and purify, plus prevent breakouts by removing dead skin and bacteria.  I love the scent of the Truffle Therapy line.  At $27, this isn't a cheap toner, but I think it might be worth it.  It's definitely one of my favorite toners.

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The TONYMOLY Lip Tone Lip Care Stick is a tinted balm that comes in Honey Moisture, Rose Blossom, and Mint Light.  The color subscribers received varied.  I got Rose Blossom, which is supposed to give your lips some intense hydration with shea butter, Bulgarian rose, camellia oil, and rosehip oil.  The rose scent is a little strong for my liking, but it's okay.  I like rose scents, but I don't really want them on my face.  It was moisturizing, but I didn't notice any color.  I tried to swatch this, but it wasn't visible on my skin.  If you're looking for actual tint, this won't be the balm for you.

Overall, this wasn't a bad month for ipsy.  I loved the toner and the Lisa Frank brush.  The OFRA blush was also quite nice.  The TONYMOLY lip balm and the Touch in Sole primer were just okay.  Three out of five products isn't bad for ipsy.  If I had to choose a favorite item this month, it would be the toner.

What did you think of the April ipsy?  What did you get in your bag?

DermStore BeautyFix Review, April 2017

DermStore BeautyFix, $24.95 per month (US only)

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Sweet little Rosita was very disappointed to learn that she wasn't modeling for BunnyFix.  She is a month-old Holland Lop and is the cutest little thing.

DermStore BeautyFix is a subscription box that sends subscribers $100+ worth of products each month.  All subscribers receive the same products with occasional scent or color variation.  Most months, you'll get multiple skincare products, a makeup product, a beauty tool, and sometimes a hair or nail product.  You'll get at least six products, sometimes as many as eleven.  BeautyFix is very heavy on skincare and is great for women who are 30+ and interested in fighting signs of aging.  April has a  "Down to Earth" theme with natural beauty products because Earth Day is this month.

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Here's what I got this month:

My April BeautyFix box was worth $167.39.  You always get your money's worth with BeautyFix!   April has a  "Down to Earth" theme with natural beauty products because Earth Day is this month.  BeautyFix generally has a beauty tool each month, but they went a couple of months without having one, then included one in the March box, and now they skipped the beauty tool again this month.  Maybe they are moving away from that, which is a little disappointing.  We got seven skincare products, a makeup item, and a hair product this month.  Three of the products were full size!  BeautyFix always has at least one full size product and often two, but three is a special treat.

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BeautyFix has been including tons of full size Juice Beauty products this past year!  Since April of last year, we've gotten five full size Juice Beauty products.  In fact, last April, we got the same Juice Beauty product we got this month, the Green Apple Age Defy Moisturizer.  They've changed the packaging in the past year, I noticed.  Last year's jar was clear glass, and this year's is an opaque, shimmery white.  Besides two of this moisturizer, we've also gotten a Juice Beauty primer, cleanser, and peel in the past year.  If you love Juice Beauty, then you'll love BeautyFix, but it's a bit off-putting for those of us who aren't the biggest fans of the company.  I liked the primer, cleanser, and peel, but I've tried this moisturizer a million different times as it always shows up in boxes and it just isn't for me.  I hate the strong, sour green apple scent.  It works fine as a moisturizer, but I'd rather use a moisturizer with a scent that is more to my liking.  My mom loves this moisturizer, so she is in luck!

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I think this is my first time trying an Honest Beauty product!  Magic Balm is a product that has a lot of uses.  It's primarily a lightweight moisturizer, I believe, but it can also be used on cuticles or used as a highlighter or lip balm.  It is made of a mix of plant oils, butters, and beeswax.  While it looks peach in the container, it goes on clear.  I might end up using this as a lip balm, but that's probably about it.  I prefer a heavier, creamier moisturizer and I like more shimmer in my highlighter.  This was a miss for me.

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Swatch of 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Pomegranate Oil Anti-Aging Lipstick in Poppy

Swatch of 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Pomegranate Oil Anti-Aging Lipstick in Poppy

This month's makeup item was the 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Pomegranate Oil Anti-Aging Lipstick in Poppy.  I believe all subscribers received the same color.  This is a bright, beautiful, neutral red.  It was very flattering on me and I believe it would look good on most people.  It had excellent staying power.  The pigment is fruit-based and the lipstick actually smells like pomegranate.  It contains shea butter and pomegranate oil to keep your lips looking youthful.  I'm quite picky about my lipstick, but I ended up loving this one! 

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Luzern Laboratories is a company you will see pretty often in BeautyFix.  They have a new line of products coming out called La Défense Urban Protect, which is supposed to protect your skin from pollutants.  The mask is clay-based.  You apply it to your face, let it set for about fifteen minutes, then rinse.  The moisturizer is a yellow cream with a light, fruity scent that I really liked.  Besides protecting your skin from environmental pollutants, it is also very hydrating and will help even out your skin tone.  Luzern generally has outrageously expensive skincare products, but the moisturizer is about half the price of some of their other moisturizers.  It's still $80, so it's not cheap, but some of their other moisturizers are $165-$175.

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The VENeffect Anti-Aging Lip Treatment is a hydrating cream that is supposed to prevent the formation of vertical lines on lips.  It has a light cucumber scent to it and tastes a teeny bit sweet.  It's very moisturizing, but I haven't used it long enough to see anti-aging effects.  At $85 for a third of an ounce, it is an extraordinarily expensive lip treatment!  I'll use up my sample, but I can't see myself buying this product.

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The skyn ICELAND Hydro Cool Firming Face Gels for Smile Lines is a mask that contains two pieces, one for each side of your mouth.  You apply the mask after cleansing your face and allow to set for ten minutes.  It's supposed to be firming, smoothing, and brightening.  You can't buy just the smile line mask -- skyn ICELAND sells the smile line gels in a box with forehead gels.  I find a lot of gel masks don't stick very well, but these stayed on my skin the whole ten minutes without constantly having to readjust them.  I wouldn't recommend talking or eating with these on, but, if you're just sitting there reading or watching TV, you'll be fine.  They did have a cooling feel to them.  I found that they were a little too big for my face, but I was able to place them in a way that worked for me.  They weren''t very liquid-y at all.  You're not going to see anti-aging effects with just one use of these, but I liked the results I did see and would love to use these again.

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Alterna's Caviar CC Cream 10-in-1 Complete Correction Leave-in Hair Perfector is one of my Holy Grail hair products.  They call it 10-in-1 because, according to Alterna, it "increase[s] smoothness, shine, strength and manageability while preventing UV damage, breakage, dryness and frizz."  To use this, you apply it to damp hair.  It leaves my hair so soft and shiny.  I was so happy to get another sample of this product!

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The final product was the Dermalogica Stress Positive Eye Lift.  This was missing from my BeautyFix box this month, so I contacted DermStore and they quickly sent it to me.  DermStore has fabulous customer service and is always quick to correct errors.  This was the third time they've left a product out of my BeautyFix box.  This is a moisturizing eye treatment that is supposed to minimize dark circles and reduce puffiness.  I've only used this a few times and would probably have to use it an extended period of time to see real effects, but it did seem to help some with puffiness.  

I'm happy with my April BeautyFix box!  Two of the three full size products were misses for me, but I loved everything else in the box!  The Juice Beauty moisturizer and the Honest Beauty Magic Balm were the only two products that I didn't love.  My favorite products were definitely the 100% Pure lipstick and the Alterna Caviar CC Cream.  This is one of the better BeautyFix boxes I've gotten.

What did you think of this month's BeautyFix?  Did you have any favorite products?