Angel Beauty Box – The beauty subscription box for brown girls!

I’ve reviewed a tooooon of beauty subscription boxes. These things are so popular these days and it doesn’t look like the trend is ending any time soon. There are a ton of boxes for EVERY interest. I received the Angel Beauty Box for review and I am pleasantly surprised and for several reasons. For one…it is a box catered to brown girls. And unlike many beauty subscription boxes, it has a nice little system that guarantees you get products that you will actually use. Let’s take a peek…

Angel Box

Yes, I kissed the box. Y’all know I’m silly. :cool: Like most boxes, this one came with a good amount of single-use samples. I got several from Mizani.

Mizani Hair Care

Mizani True Textures

I’m familiar with Mizani but haven’t used their products since I’ve been natural. It’s been forever since they’ve been on my radar but I’m actually looking forward to trying out that hair oil. Especially since it’s silicone-free.

Skincare wise, I got two 8 oz bottles of lotion from a brand named Ziaja.

Ziaja Lotion

I’ve never tried their products before and I found both bottles of lotion to be a bit strong in fragrance but I was still surprised to see such large “samples”. This never happens in beauty subscription boxes!

Also in the skincare department, I got 2 small samples of a Biao creme.

Biao samples

That makes TWO skincare brands that I haven’t heard of. I tend to get excited when I am introduced to brands that I haven’t heard of. At the same time, I like seeing familiar brands in my box too. A nice mix of the two makes me happy.

This unidentified tub of pink stuff landed in my box as well.

Homemade lip balm

I’m not sure what it is as there wasn’t a label or anything on it. I’ve got far too many allergies to play Russian roulette so I left that baby alone. I’m pretty sure it’s a lip balm.

I got a nail polish from the brand RGB!

HIP RBG nail polish

I’m not sure I how I feel about brown polishes on me but I love the concept behind the brand RGB. And I’ve played around a bit with this polish and I love how creamy it is.

And lastly I got 2 custom made all natural goodies!

Angel Beauty Box

Angel Beauty Box scrub

What a nice treat! Unfortunately, I didn’t get an ingredients list with these so I didn’t want to use them. I have to look at the ingredients of products that I put on my skin before I use them. It’s a shame because both the scrub and lavender lotion appeared to be free from synethetic fragrances (that’s just me guessing) but I didn’t want to chance it.

OVERALL: For $20, this appears to be one of the better beauty subscription boxes that I’ve come across. I like how you get so many different products ranging from hair care, skincare and cosmetics. I really enjoyed taking the survey online at that Angel Beauty Box website. The press sample of my box didn’t come with a list of the products (boo…) but subscriptions can expect a magazine listing the featured products.

Have you tried this beauty box? Or are you sick of ‘em?

Mascara Monday: Milani Grandissimo Lashes mascara

Milani Grandissimo Incredible Volume mascara

Ya’ll know I love Milani. Like adore. A lot. Their mascaras have always just been okay though. Not good but not terrible either. I’ve been eyeing this one for a while so when it landed in my mailbox I got excited and wished for the best. Let’s see how we did…

Milani Grandissimo Lashes mascara

Price: $5.49 at drugstores and at Milani.com.
Packaging (brush wand): 3 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “Bigger is better! The mega volume brush creates a false lash effect. Dramatically enhances and thickens even the littlest lashes. Long-lasting, smear-proof, and non-clumping formula. Paraben-free. ” (source)

The Truth: Wowsers…this is definitely one of their better mascaras!

What I Loved About It: It’s got nice volume.

What I Didn’t Like: It has a large wand and may clump on you…

Overall: I first saw the wand on this mascara and just knew that she would be able to work some magic. And she didn’t let me down. Look at this baby…

Milani Grandissimo Lashes mascara wand

Not too shabby, uh? When you see a wand like this, you should realize 2 things. (1) A good amount of volume is coming your way and (2) so are clumps. It is almost inevitable. You just can’t avoid the clumps when you’ve got wands like these. To minimize them you can only apply one coat of mascara but if your goal is crazy awesome lashes, you’ll want to apply more mascara. That said, I REALLY dug this mascara. It’s average as far its appearance and she doesn’t tote any ah-mazing claims but it’s a fantastic mascara nonetheless. The wand is large but if you’ve got patience, you’ll find that it’s easy to breeze through the lashes.

The formula is great too. I didn’t find it to be too thick and it applied nicely to the lashes. I only applied 2 coats to my lashes and got a good amount of length and volume. It’s dark mascara so it’s perfect for a dramatic look. It does well with holding up throughout the day and I only found clumping to be a problem when trying to apply more than 2 coats. Way to go, Milani!  

Bare Lashes



DSC_2773

 

Lashes after 2 coats

 

Milani Grandissimo Lashes mascara on lashes

Do I recommend it?: Sure! It’s cheap and it works well.

 

Ooooh Milani lovers, have you tried this one?

The Lipstick League: Weekly Links, Volume 90

Zoya Yana

Yay for another post from the The Lipstick League! We are a group of beauty bloggers, bound together by the desire to save the world with beauty, one post at a time!

We’d also like to take a moment to congratulate our very own Phyrra for five years of beauty blogging! To commemorate the event, she’s hosting a mega-givewaway here that you don’t want to miss.

 My Beauty Bunny – has a fabulous guest post from the Lipstick League’s Clumps of Mascara sharing the 5 Best Cruelty-Free Beauty Brands for Women of Color. Trust us, ladies of every complexion will love these colorful choices!

Nouveau Cheap – the best multi-tasker to come out this year is also limited edition. Here’s why you need the new Milani Shadow Eyez in Almond Cream (but hurry before it’s gone).

Prime Beauty – takes a look at the Lancôme Summer 2013 Color Design Eye Show Palette. The colors are so summery you’ll want to dive right in, PLUS she has a Lancôme giveaway to give your skin a luminous summer glow!

Phyrra – shows off the new Makeup Geek Pigments! Which shade will you fall for?

we heart this – presents a drugstore eyelid primer that’s WAY better than pulling a rabbit out of hat! It’s L’Oreal Magic De-Crease.

Beauty Junkies Unite – Take off for your summer vacation early with the review & swatches for the brand new Essie Resort Collection for 2013. These new nail hues are bright & fun!

Clumps of Mascara – adores the brand Simple and their awesome skincare products. Got sensitive skin? You HAVE to try this drugstore brand out.

EauMG – Here’s a video review of one of Victoria’s favorite classic perfumes for spring/summer, Chanel Cristalle.

Gouldylox Reviews – Did a temporary color stain your hair? If you aren’t up for the pastel trend, here’s how to remove the unwanted color.

Guest Post of the Week, as chosen by My Beauty Bunny – Did your spring cleaning include a thorough washing of your makeup tools? If not, Kristie of Blushing Basics has the details on tackling this important task: How To Clean & Sanitize your Makeup & Makeup Brushes.

Guest Post of the Week, as chosen by Lipglossiping – The lovely Meg from Lips So Facto shares her top tips on how to DIY your own relaxing bath soak, a must-read for stressed-out sisters everywhere!

Question of the Week:

Before we officially head into Summer 2013, tell us:
What was your favorite new beauty product of Spring 2013, and why?

B says, “Hmmm…I can’t even say. Nothing really WOW’d me this season.”

What about you? Were there any products that you just looooved this season?

 

 

 

Josie Maran Adds Shimmer!

Welllll, we all know how much I love Josie Maran. Yes, I’m still on her adoring bandwagon. I recently got some new products of hers to review and while I’ve featured them before, these are different because Josie has added some shimmer to her products!

Josie Maran Radiance

Now I’m not gonna lie…I’m no fan of sparklin’. Especially when said sparkle is overwhelming. But the added shimmer in these JM products are subtle. Yay! I knew Josie would get it right. I’m still a fan of her original products because they are fragrance free but these are fun if you’re looking to try something different.

The Body Butter has a nice “natural” fragrance to it…

Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter with Radiance

And it is just beauuuuutiful to look at.

Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter with Radiance jar

I find that the shimmer is very apparent on my skin so I’m not a fan of wearing it daily. It really POPS.

Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter with Radiance on skin

The hair serum smells as good as the original hair serum and the shimmer isn’t as proponent.

Josie Maran Argan Oil Hair Serum with Radiance

And if you haven’t tried JM’s Hair Serum, hop to it because it smells divine and is great at keeping the hair slicked down. Of couse everyone’s hair type is different but I like how it worked on my afro.

The Argan Oil is different than the original because it contains honey lavender and chamomile.

Josie Maran Pure Argan Oil with Radiance

Pure Argan Oil with Radiance

Josie Maran Pure Argan Oil with Radiance on skin

I really do like the original better. I just find it to be, I don’t know…pure. But these limited edition products are great for shimmer lovin’ guys and gals.

Beauty Stats:

Prices:
Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter with Radiance – $65 on Ebay.
Argan Oil Hair Serum with Radiance – $30 at Sephora.com.
Pure Argan Oil with Radiance – $48 at Sephora.com.

Steep prices? Well, yeah…but that’s typical for Josie Maran’s products. I’m excited to see her stepping outside of the box a bit with these but I think I’m a sucker for her simple products more. Whatcha think? Shimmer or no shimmer?

Hair Talk: Win A DermOrganic Gift Card!

Did I tell y’all that I cut my hurr? Like…off?

Short fade #naturalhair

Yeah. No, I’m not going through any breakdowns. I’m just sick of dealing with hair. It keeps falling out thanks to postpartum-ness and so I was like, “Screw it…” and I went to the barber and shaved it all off. I am in loooove. I’ll be maintaining this for quite some time. Hair this short eliminates the need for a ton of products but I’ll definitely be keeping my DermOrganic Daily Conditioning Shampoo in heavy rotation. I only like to use sulfate-free products on my color treated hair and THIS stuff is the best.

Not familiar with DermOrganic? It’s a fantastic natural brand of hair care products for guys and gals of all hair types. I am currently co-hosting a giveaway on the DermOrganic Facebook page. You can enter daily to win a $10 gift card. It really is THAT simple. Enter here.

Clumps-of-Mascara-Instant-Win

Good luuuuck!

A Bead-y Bead-y Radiant Glow Face Powder!

Some products are just too pretty to touch. They have no business being in the hands of clumsy folx like me. Take this Too Faced Sweetheart Beads Radiant Glow Face Powder for example. I got it for review some time ago.

Too Faced Sweetheart Beads Radiant Glow Face Powder up close

Pretty, huh? These aren’t innovative. They’ve been around for quite some time but this is my first time owning and using a bead-y powder type deal. Can I be honest? I think I enjoy looking at these more than I like using them. Craziness, I know. These little bits of magic bring me so much joy just by looking at them.

Too Faced Sweetheart Beads Radiant Glow Face Powder in hand

I really don’t even need to apply them to my face to be happy. And you’re probably like, “What the heck is this for anyway, B?”. Welp. Good question… Think of it as an add-on AFTER you’ve applied your makeup. If your foundation is set, blush is in place and the lips are all glossed up, this baby will take your cheeks to the next level. Of course it’s not necessary but a little extra glow ain’t never hurt nobody.

Too Faced Sweetheart Beads Radiant Glow Face Powder macro

Nope. I found the glow to be far too fair for my complexion. Instead of a glow, I got a bit of an ashy wash of color. Oh boo. Can’t win ‘em all, B. Can’t win ‘em all. I know. All cosmetics aren’t made for all complexions and so I don’t think this one suits me best. I don’t care though. I still love looking in the tin and rolling it around my hand. I’m weird like that. Don’t judge me. I dare you to NOT stare at these beads.

Too Faced Sweetheart Beads Radiant Glow Face Powder packaging

Beauty Stats

Price: $32
Where To Buy: TooFaced.com
Is it worth it?: It definitely isn’t an necessity in your daily makeup routine. Is it fun to have? Sure! My darker sisters may struggle with getting glow though.

Soooo is anyone else a sucker for packaging?

Beauty in Mommyhood – Elle is 4 Months Old!

Elle is 4 months old

Dear Elle,

Hey there, big girl! Technically you’re 20 weeks old which means you are almost 5 months old. I was all late with getting your doctor’s appointment squared away so you won’t be getting your 4 month checkup until like uh…this week. I am SO excited (and nervous) to see how much you weigh. I’m hoping that you’re at least 14 lbs or so. I see you getting bigger and you are officially in 6-9 months clothing but I always wonder if my breastmilk is enough for you. People keep telling me how small you are and it bugs me.

They don’t know how far you’ve come. Every baby isn’t super chubby and it’s a bit insensitive to say things like, “Wow…she’s so small.” to parents of preemies and small babies. But whatever. I’m learning how to let it go. We don’t plan on introducing food for awhile so you’ve still got some months being exclusively breastfed. You do have your own little raspberry shop though.

Blowing raspberries

You love blowing spit bubbles. It cracks your Grandma Clumps up. Speaking of her…she adores you. So so much. You’re so incredibly loved by so many people. Everyone is in love with your eyes. “They are so alert!” they say.

Pretty eyed girl

And it’s true. I’m not sure where you got your eyes from but I love looking in them. I’ll never forget the night I finished giving you a bottle and you stared right into my eyes. We looked eyes for a good 30 seconds and then you gave me the biggest smile ever. I love moments like that.

Traveling baby

Last night I asked your Daddy what if he thought you cried a lot. On a scale from 1-10 with 10 being A LOT, we both gave you a 3. You hardly ever cry. Your sitter says the same thing. I am so grateful we ended up with a cool and calm little girl. Your personality is so here and when you don’t have a constant smile on your face we know you’re sleepy or need some downtime. Your demeanor is so pleasant that this month we pushed it to the limits a bit by having adventures waaaay past your bedtime (success!) and taking a 4.5 hour road trip one day and returning the next (tragedy!). We’re trying to learn you and for the most part I think your Daddy and I  are becoming amazing parents. I’m so proud of your Daddy. He works a lot, yes, but when he’s here he wants a ton of Elle and Daddy time. He snuggles you and has you giggling up a storm when he kisses your tummy.

Baby and Daddy

You love when he does that. We both sing to you and we’re amazed at how you watch TV like a big girl. Doc McStuffins in your favorite. Every time you hear the theme song your face lights up. And when you’re fussy and nothing is helping soothe you, if I bust out in “Doe A Deer” from The Sound of Music, you calm down.

Baby and mommy

Cheesy, but it works. You’re a music lovin’ baby and we want nothing more than to keep you surrounded by tunes. We took our first family road trip this month and it was challenging but you were so sweet around dozens of new people. You flashed smiles and definitely played the part. And you are a drool machine. It’s hilarious. Looks like we’ll be seeing some teeth soon! Your ezcema is still around and mama is trying a new concoction every month. Nothing seems to work. While I have eliminated most dairy products I still eat a few items with milk in them and so maybe that’s the cause. I don’t know. I’m always blaming myself for something when it comes to you. I want you to have a perfect life. I want the best for you.

Happy baby

Because you deserve it. Don’t tell your Daddy but you’re my best friend. Yep, my almost 5 month old baby is my BFF.

I enjoy every moment with you. Even the 2am bottle feedings. I love our weekend cuddles and Saturday adventures. I love taking you out on walks and watching your face light up when you hear a dog bark. The world amazes you. I no longer feel Working Mommy Guilt. Our time apart isn’t horrible because it allows you to learn in a different environment with a qualified caretaker and it allows mommy to continually work on her craft. I never wanted to loose myself in Mommyhood and guess what? I haven’t! You are #1 in my life but I still have a social life and passions. I am in a great place. In the next month or so we’ll be moving and you’ll be getting your own room…officially. I don’t know though…I still think I want you sleeping in our room. I’m not ready to be so far away from you yet.

Yep, I’m an attached mama. But you…and this face…

Baby with thumb in mouth

It lights up my world.

Keep shinin’, baby. I love you,
Mommy

Join me for a Eucerin Twitter Party. Prizes included!

Eucerin_No-Fry-Friday-Badge

Hey girl hey! Gonna be online sometime during tomorrow? Crazy question, right? I mean if you’re reading this chances are you are somewhat of a techie and love reading about beauty happenings. Tomorrow I’m going to be one of the co-hosts of Eucerin’s #NoFryFriday Twitter chat. It’s going to be a day long Twitter chat with hour-long chats with different hosts. Yours truly will be hosting the 1pm-2pm EST hour and I’d love for you to join in.

Eucerin_No-Fry-Friday_Schedule_Macro

So WHY is the brand doing this? According to Eucerin, “Memorial Day is widely considered to be the unofficial start to the summer. Many people flock to the beaches but may not practice safe sun exposure. The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention declared that the Friday before Memorial Day be called ‘Don’t Fry Day’. Its goal: promote sun safety awareness and encourage people to practice safe sun while outdoors.”

Makes sense to me. Especially since I’m a beach babe! The party will be be funnnnn. Each hour Eucerin will be giving away one Sun-Safe grand prize pack each hour, filled with a wide brimmed hat, water bottle, Sunglass Hut gift card, Eucerin products and more. *squeals* Tweet me and let me know if you plan on making it. See you then!