Tuesday, 16 February 2016

GemBox review

Kia Ora!

Over the weekend I was lucky enough to attend Talk Beauty NZ, and part of the goodie bag was a Gem Box! I've been aware of Gem Box for a couple of years now, and have really liked some of the jewellery pieces that they've brought out.

Gem Box is a monthly jewellery subscription, that includes 2-4 pieces in each box and is $39 (including shipping). There are four types of boxes (and you can find out your style by taking the quiz): Vintage Glam, Urban Edge, Classic Chic, and Boho Love. Each box is different, but promises to have approximately a $75 value. Gem Box also offer a return service for any piece that you aren't happy with (for store credit).

Each Gem Box comes in this neat slide-out box, and the pieces are nestled in the black fabric. The one I grabbed was the Urban Edge variation, and I'm keen to show you what I got inside of it!

The first thing in my one is a set of three hair-ties. I've seen these kinds of hair ties around before (and they can be used as bracelets too I think), and they look comfortable as well as styly. I've been using the black one for the last few days, and it is really great at holding up a ponytail, doesn't slip out, and doesn't rip out my hair when I try to remove it. Yay!

These earrings are cute, but not my style. To be fair I picked a random box off the pile at the Talk Beauty NZ event, so it wasn't exactly tailored to my personal style. They are cute, and would be perfect for someone that loves vintage-esque pieces, but I don't tend to wear earrings very often. They are worth $29 according to the Gem Box shop, and feel like a decent quality piece though so a great addition to someone's Gem Box.

I am seriously in love with this bag! I've been looking for a cute leather bag, just big enough for my phone and a lippy, for ages. I used this one when going out for Valentine's day, and it was perfect. I love the chain, I love the closure, I wasn't too keen on the studs to start but they have grown on me. The only thing I wish was that it was silver or brass coloured metal, but the gold colour is nice too. I am so lucky to have gotten this bag, and I can't wait to use it more! It's worth $34 in the Gem Box shop, and they have a silver version available.

Overall, I'm ecstatic that I had the chance to try out this Gem Box, and I gained at least 2 items that I'm really happy with. I am seriously thinking about subscribing to this box now, and kicking myself for not doing that at this time last year! This box was great quality (and good value too), and I'm sure the service itself is just as good quality.

Until next time ...

Friday, 12 February 2016

Fortune Cookie Soap Spring Soap Box 2016

Kia Ora!

My favourite subscription box arrived! I love the scents and products that are included in the Fortune Cookie Soap subscription boxes. They are a little expensive with the exchange rate right now, but I think it's worth it!

Fortune Cookie Soap Box is a box that comes out seasonally, so every three months.  For  international it costs $34USD for each box. However you get a $10USD code with each box to use on their website, which is an awesome bonus.

I've received the Fall , Summer , and Winter boxes, and won't be stopping anytime soon.

It looks so bright! And smells amazing. I can't wait to dive in!

The card with all the specific scent information.

Guardian of the Forest Fortune Cookie Soap
I love these soaps. Confession: I haven't actually used any yet, but I love smelling them all. This one smells a little bit like lemon, but it's not my favourite scent. 

Disco Tree Whipped Cream
This product is in every box, and it's one of the best moisturisers I've ever used. It is always light, and sinks into the skin almost instantly. This one smells like berries and flowers, and is a great scent combination. I've also found that the scents in this product stick around for hours after you use it (which is awesome if you love the scent).  

Paradise Found Petal Perfume
Yumm, I can't get enough of this perfume. It's a tiny roll-on perfume, which is a wonderful way to dispense the product. It's a florally sweet perfume, and smells fantastic. I love being able to pop this on my pulse points and breathe in the scent. The petals inside the bottle are a neat touch too! 

One C Cuticle Oil
I'm not really into cuticles, or nail things. I probably should do more nail care, but I just can't find the motivation. I did try this out, and didn't like having the oil sit on my fingers for ages. It did make my cuticles softer, and my nails looked a bit healthier (as much as they can from one use). The scent is patchouli and vanilla, which is nice but not my favourite. I'm going to pass this on, but if you're into nails you might like to check it out. 

This Thing? OCD Hand Sanitizer
I'm obsessed with the hand sanitizer's from FCS. I have one in my bag, one on my desk at work, one on my desk at home ... You get the point. I love that these clean my hands and leave them smelling great! This one smells like vanilla and fresh flowers, and I love it! 

Oh Hair Shampoo Bar
I don't tend to use solid shampoo, and I have a huge backlog to use, but I want to use this one now! It's the best scent in the box (to me) and I seriously can't get enough of it. Peach, grapefruit, and thyme is the scent description on the card; for me it's very nearly the perfect scent! 

 In-Organic Shower Steamer
I had one of these in the first FCS box I got, but I thought it was a bath bomb and gave it away. I'm really happy to see another one so I can actually try it out this time. Keep an eye on my Instagram, as I'm loving posting things there.

Unless ... Pedi-Bomb
Hmmm, something new and different for me. I haven't really gotten into foot spas, but I have a bucket that I can use and will give this a go. It won't be fancy, but I'll have fun trying it (although maybe not while this heat is going on in Auckland). This was a bit munched in the packet, but that won't matter if I'm going to dissolve it anyway.

And that's the box. I love 5-6 out of the 8 products, and don't hate anything. That's always a win with a subscription box. I can't wait to use some of the products, and the perfume is already a daily staple.

What do you think of the box? Which product do you want to try out?

Until next time ... 

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

January Empties

Kia Ora!

Last week was a little quiet because I was busy organising my engagement party! Unfortunately it meant that the blog suffered a little, for which I'm really sorry. I have been trying to keep up with social media and am posting on my Instagram daily, so follow me there for updates.

I love reading empties blog posts, and I managed to finish so many things in January! It must have been a bit of a fluke, but most things were awesome so how can I not talk about them all?

Nivea In-Shower Smooth Lotion
I got this over a year ago in a Beauty Review box, and it has been sitting in the bottom of my shower for the last 6 months. It was a reasonable lotion, I quite liked the novelty of putting it on while I was in the shower. Where this product turned bad was the packaging. By the time I was 2/3 of the way through, it was very difficult to squeeze out. The plastic is almost too hard to squeeze at the bottom, and so I had to have my fiance help me get it out of the bottle. Not ideal!

BeeKind Body Lotion
This was a sample in a Bonjour Jolie box, and I love it. The packaging is cute, and you just rip the top off to open it. It smells divine, and is a thin lotion that sinks in really quickly. Love it!

Beekman Fresh Air Lotion
I used the shower gel companion of this lotion during December, and wasn't too fussed with it. However the lotion is awesome, sinks in and moisturises really well. It smells nicer in lotion form too, with a light fresh scent. Yum!

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Butter
I'm so excited to have used this up. I've never finished a full-size body butter before, because those suckers are huge! This is one of my favourite scents (and I bought the body spray when it was stocked last year). The formula of the body butters is awesome, really thick and perfect for dry skin. I also used this to give my fiance a massage one time, and it worked alright - not as good as oils or massage bars from Lush, but enough to help his sore leg muscles. I have about 50 million more body butters from The Body Shop to work through, but I love them so it's rather exciting. Keep an eye out for other flavours in future empties.

Butterfly Party Soap Bath and Shower Whip - CandyLand
I love the formula of these shower whips. They are easy to scoop, lather up well, leave you sparkling clean, and the scent lingers for a few hours. It's great! This scent was very sweet, and isn't my absolute favourite but it is nice. It reminded me a bit of Snow Fairy from Lush.

The Body Shop Mango Shower Gel
Another great product. These are a bit more expensive than supermarket shower gels, but they are great. The scents are wonderful (and I did enjoy the Mango one), this bottle lasted a couple of months, it lathers up well and cleans you perfectly, and it even leaves your skin feeling moisturised. I also have a few more of these to work through, but I would repurchase in the future.

Tosowoong Body Scrub Wash
I got this in a Memebox in 2014 I think. It's a reasonable product. It has small scrubby particles, so it doesn't give a deep scrub, but it also lathers well. It smells nice, but the scent doesn't linger. Basically, it's decent but nothing special.

Bossy Cosmetics Tutti Fruiti Emulsified Scrub
I got this recently in my Bossy Cosmetics haul, and absolutely adore it (clearly since I used it up so fast). The combination of oils and larger sugar scrub particles is wonderful, leaving you with very soft and smooth skin. I loved the scent too, it was sweet and fruity. The chia seeds on top didn't do a lot but are a novel touch. I can't wait to buy some more of this (once I've used up all my other Bossy scrubs). I highly recommend this one, and if you want to buy some yourself head over to the website!

Etude House My Beauty Tool
I've mentioned before how much I love these cotton pads. To recap, soft, sturdy, wonderful. I'm in the process of getting some more as this was my last packet.

Swisspers Cucumber Facial Cleansing Wipes
I love these face wipes. I use them when I'm too lazy to use a proper cleanser (which is more often than I'd like to admit). These ones smell fresh and cucumber-y. They are soft and wonderful. I didn't use them to take off makeup so I can't comment on that but I loved using them for cleansing. I have another packet in stock, but I can highly recommend them and will repurchase later in the year.

Fortune Cookie Soap OCD Hand Sanitzer - Glitz and Glamour
This is from one of my Fortune Cookie Soap boxes (which are expensive but amazing). I love the OCD hand sanitzers from FCS, as they smell amazing, clean your hands, and moisturise them. This one smelt delicious, all warm notes with a hint of spice and musk - I know I'm terrible at scent descriptions but this was truly delicious.

Milky Dress Pink Lovely Fast Shampoo
What a name. This is a Korean shampoo that I got from one Memebox or another. It was a pink liquid inside, and you didn't need much to get a good lather going. This was a pretty decent shampoo, although I did find I needed to use a lot of conditioner afterwards. It left my hair shiny and smooth, and lasted for ages too! I don't think I'll repurchase as I have about 6 shampoo/conditioner sets stocked up, but I did enjoy it and would recommend.

Appelles Tamanu Conditioner
Oh look, some conditioner without the matching shampoo (which is still in my shower). These were awesome. I got them from Violet Box, and have been trying to use up some of my samples. These smelled herbal, and were great for conditioning. I did like them, but only got 1.5 uses from each bottle. It was enough to realise I like this brand though so that was good.

Nimue Purifier
This was a spot treatment, and I found it worked a treat. It lasted for over a year as you only needed a tiny bit each time you used it. I liked that it seemed to immediately help with any trouble spots on my face. I haven't found anything to replace this yet, and would welcome recommendations!

Jeju Hallabong Peeling Toner
This was a neat toner, although it didn't seem to have any particularly special effects. It did fade red spots a little faster, and smelt like citrus. Otherwise, a bit meh.

Benton Snail Bee High Content Essence
I've been through several bottles of this in the last 18 months. I love it to bits. It helps smooth out my skintone, fading spots, and being a generally great product to use. Some people have had problems with Benton products, particularly as they don't use chemicals to prolong their life, but I've never had any problems. I keep this in the fridge to help with that, and it makes it awesome to put on on hot days too. I've talked about it before here and here if you want to know more.

Claypatra Mineral Salt Clay Mask
This was just a sample size, but it was perfect for 1-2 masks. I think I left it too long though and it had gone off by the time I used it. It didn't give bad results, just didn't work properly. I won't say anything else because of that, and otherwise it would be an unfair review because of user error.

Bossy Cosmetics Clay Cleanser
Another Bossy product, and this one just as good. This was a solid clay cleanser, and it was awesome! It lasted for months and months (I honestly thought it would never end), and was wonderful. It was easy to use, left my face soft, clean, and feeling moisturised. It was easy to put on (just rub the bar all over your face), and to wash off. It doubles as a mask if you leave it on a bit longer. I honestly had great results with this product, and can't wait to buy some more.

Nivea Men Clear Effect Volcanic Mud Foam Face Wash
Review from my fiance: It smelled nice, went on easily and wasn't too gritty. Some products feel like they tear up your face, but this one was nice to use. It didn't dry out my skin too much, but worked well with a moisturiser afterwards. It cleans well. Would buy again!

Well, there you have it. A super long post for January. Lots of great products though, and I'm sad to see most of them go. Keep an eye out next week for a 'Products I want to use up in 2016' post (very late of course), and February empties isn't too far away either. 

Did you use up anything interesting in January? 

Until next time ...