We’re at the end of the first month of this new, shiny 2015. For me, it didn’t feel like it went too slow or too bad. It’s been a bit cold, and we’ve had a few bad weather days here and there, but we’re nearly at February, and February’s lovely looking Valentine’s GlossyBox – so I thought it was definitely time to do my in-depth review of January’s box.
The first box of 2015 was all full sized, more ‘value’ items – hence it having a lower total value than previous box’s – but that by no means makes this a bad box. There are five products to get through, and I’ll just go in the same order as the card in my box.
First off is the MeMeMe Cosmetics Eye Line Pencil in the shade ‘Clay’. MeMeMe Cosmetics is a brand I’ve heard of before – they notably do some very good Benefit dupes – and are available through their own online store only as far as I can tell. This full sized, regular format eye pencil is a nice basic brown, with a very soft formula that does apply smooth. It isn’t fantastic for smudging in my opinion, as the colour thins out quite a lot with just a little smudging, but layering would fix this. It’s smells like a regular pencil, has clearly listed ingredients, and even a use by date printed on the side. I really like it when makeup has this – who really remembers when they bought each individual piece of makeup? The pencil costs £4, which isn’t the cheapest you could get an eyeliner (MUA’s eye pencils are very nice for all of £1), but it’s nice enough.
Next is the Nicka K New York Colorluxe (or Colourluxe – it’s hard to resist adding the u) Powder Blush. This is an interesting item which I think is supposed to be sold as an ‘on the go, throw in the bag’ style item – the product, applicator, and mirror all in a single item. The blush itself is a nice pale pink – the shade listed is Romantic – with no sparkle or shine and suits my paler complexion quite well. However, it smells awful – an unpleasant sour/off smell that was worse inside the actual container, but as I’ve used it more and more you can clearly smell it on the puff. Now, I do get that it’s not like people will smell it, and you can’t smell it yourself when it’s on, but it’s so strange to have a weird smelling make up item. The puff part is good for applying the blush itself, I will give it that – giving a very light coating which you can layer, but go even a little over and you’ll have to find a brush to blend it out anyway – making it not so all in one. Added to this the obvious problem of hygiene – I’m not confident it’s supposed to be removed and washed. Other than that it’s nice and soft. The mirror is a nice touch, though a little on the small side. Overall I think it’s an interesting idea, but not really practical. It’s full sized at 5g of powder inside the applicator, and costs £6.97 (converted from Euros.)
Full sized item number three is from Jelly Pong Pong (apparently part of So Susan Cosmetics, we’ve had nice things from them in the past) and it’s their All Over Glow. The bottle describes it as an ‘illuminating gel’ – usable as a highlighter, or all over. As a highlighter it’s very nice – glowy without seeming greasy. As an all over type product, either used sparingly on it’s own or in a moisturiser to make it easier it reminds me of Boots Seventeen’s Skin Wow Primer – which gives a similar glowly-ness (though the Skin Wow has more obvious glitter pieces in it as well). The gel is in an easy to use tube, which you squeeze out to reveal the quite dark, brown/bronze gel. On first look I was worried it would be too dark for me, but actually it blends out much lighter, and silvery. The only real downside I’ve found so far is it does leave a fair amount of residue on your finders, which dries fairly quickly, meaning I suppose that you’ve lost a little product – but then this drying quality is probably what makes it look and feel non-greasy. It’s full sized at 15 g of product (actually pretty generous) for £10. This makes it the most expensive individual item in the box, but it does feel worth it.
Kueshi’s Natural & Pleasant (or Pure & Clean as the bottle says) Revitalizing Face Toner is another great item this month. I’m not sure how popular toners are anymore, but I use them. I’ve read a lot of people saying they do nothing but this isn’t the case for me. A good toner should do what all those fancy Micellar Cleansing Waters claim to do – clean and soothe the skin without leaving it feeling dry, usually with some added skin boosting ingredients. Kueshi isn’t a brand I’ve heard of before (I use the Simple Toner – the one with Camomile and Witch Hazel) so I didn’t have any expectations with this one. But it’s a lovely toner – it’s very nice on, and while it has a very strong smell (kind of a sweet, generic bath item smell) it’s actually pretty pleasant. The little push top lid and opening works well, a few big drops is all you really need, it dries nicely and doesn’t feel residue-y. I do also like that it’s pink to be honest, it’s cute. It’s ‘good for your skin’ ingredients are listed as Aloe Vera, Camomile, and Calendula. The first two are obvious skin soothers, but I’d never heard of Calendula – and that’s because it’s an alternative name for Marigold. According to Wikipedia (as I still had no clue what use Marigold has) it’s a natural anti inflammatory, and antiseptic. This toner is probably better for my skin than my current one, but it is more than twice the price at £8.34 (converted from Euros) for 200ml. It’s really very nice – but might not be worth the price tag in the end.
The final item is a nice little lip balm from Naked Lips – their Organic SuperFruits Lip Balm to be specific. It’s a very nice idea – a very basic, fuss free packaging, and no colour formula, but full of things that will actually be good for you, right? The ingredients list also takes care to list all the easy to read names of its ingredients, so we can see it’s made with lots of moisturising oils and fruit oils. The brand also makes a point of mentioning how non-waxy their formula is. It’s not wax free (it contains beeswax), but it does sit more on the ‘oily’ side rather than the ‘waxy’ side of how it feels on the lips. This always seems to be the awkward thing about lip balms, because they need to provide moisture, as well as create some sort of barrier to hold that moisture in – so lip balms pretty much always contain oils and wax, which isn’t always pleasant. This one is nice enough to wear, and isn’t the oiliest I’ve ever owned (I mean oily in a bad way, and I’m referring to a Palmers lip balm, which felt awful to wear) – it smells delicious, though doesn’t taste as strong as it smells. One of the problems I have with this type of product is I’m always reminded of that funny dairy advert that talks about milk and yoghurt and stuff being good for your skin with pretty women pouring dairy products all over themselves…but then it says really it would be better if you ate the real thing. It’s a nice enough lip balm, but it isn’t life changing. Full sized it’s 4.25 g, which is about average for a lip balm, and costs £3.89 (again converted from Euros.)
So that’s the last item from the box, and the total value was £33.20 for five full sized items – the cheapest being the lip balm, and the most expensive being the illuminizer. This is the second lowest value box I’ve gotten so far from GlossyBox, my lowest being August 2014‘s at £29.33, which is only £4 or so different, but this January box I can say is easily better. It’s a good example I think of a more ‘value’ box (basically full of bigger, more affordable items) – I really like the toner and the Illuminizer, the eye pencil and lip balm is nice enough, and the only not 100% sure of item is the blush. After having done eight months so far of GlossyBox there always seems to be something worth having each time. I can’t wait to see what’s in the Valentine’s Box. Until then.