Posts Tagged: BAREMINERALS

New Too Faced Discount Code! 20% off Sitewide (2/13 – 2/16)

With the recent introduction of the Cocoa Contour, Soul Mates blush and bronzer duos, new Melted shades, and more for their 2015 Spring collection, there’s no shortage of goodies to be had from Too Faced right now. So have them at a discount!
I absolutely adore my most recent Too Faced purchase of a Sweethearts Blush, which I previously reviewed and plan on taking advantage of this discount to get another.
Use code ONETRUELOVE 2/13 through 2/16 for 20% off sitewide (restrictions apply).

cocoacontour_composite_2

You can also get a free retractable Bronze-buki brush with the purchase of a Soul Mates bronzer – code PERFECTPAIR

SoulMates

Use ebates to get an additional 4% back!

Memebox Updates: the Long-Awaited Innisfree Box and Haul of Fame Makeup Edition by Hello Pretty Bird (also codes)

**UPDATE – Sad news in Memeland – they have had to cancel the Innisfree box, refunding everyone who purchased it and awarding some memepoints for the trouble. It seems they have had numerous issues with the supplier who, ultimately, was not able to meet their deadline… again. They advised that they have cut off this relationship, so we will see if we may be able to get Innisfree products in our boxes in the distant future, but right now it’s not looking likely **

It’s been one of the most-requested brand boxes and honestly, one of the few I have any interest in: the Innisfree box is now available from Memebox! If you’re into natural ingredients, effective skincare, and a brand that cares about their environmental impact, Innisfree is certainly worthy of your attention… and hard-earned money

Innisfree Store
an Innisfree store

Jeju Island
Jeju Island

Clean, fresh air, soft warm sunlight, fertile healthy soil… Thinking you’re in paradise? Nope, you’ve just opened your Innisfree Box.

Innisfree is Korea’s first cosmetics brand dedicated to delivering clean and pure beauty from the pristine island of Jeju Island! As the global leader in “green beauty,” Innisfree boasts all natural, and eco-friendly products to ensure 100% honest and 100% pure beauty ingredients. Praised and loved by celebs and makeup artists alike since the year 2000, Innisfree has built a respectable reputation for itself with its famous line of cosmetics and skin care!

Enjoy all of Innisfree’s cult faves with this box to enjoy immaculate beauty!

Also announced today is a Makeup Edition Haul of Fame from Hello Pretty Bird. I really adored her review and choices of products and promptly grabbed a few for my very own. They are available in the USA shop at a savings of up to 45%. HPB is also running a giveaway for these items, so be sure to enter!

October Codes

If you utilize any of the links above, you will automatically receive $5 off a purchase of $100+ or $10 off a purchase of $150+

In addition to this, you can stack another $5 discount with the following codes:A3L5 or 2MYC or…

Get $5 off on orders when you buy 3 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE3

Get $8 off on orders when you buy 4 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE4

Get free shipping on purchases over $70 on USA only Memeshop items with the code FREESHIPPING

Happy Memeboxing!

***This post contains affiliate links***

Quality Time with my Oh! My Lips Memebox: a Superbox #79 Unboxing & Review

The moment this box went on sale, I threw my money at the computer screen to the chanting of “Gimme!”. I have serious lip issues in the colder months and was desperate for some new solutions. This Memebox promised all that and more. Did it deliver? Read on to find out!

Ok, YES. I know the suspense was killing you. This box is fantastic and incredibly, still available for purchase!
I would highly recommend grabbing your own and here is why….

ohmylips

Oh my lips! The colder season is comin’ round the corner, but are your lips ready?

Cracked, blistered, and dry lips were never hot in beauty history, (and never hot in your love life!) so do you have all the lip essentials to keep your kisser nice and smooth this winter?

If taking care of your lips isn’t part of your beauty to-do list this winter, re-think your beauty priorities. Most people don’t know, but collagen loss and wrinkles around the lips add ages to your face, and with winter winds and drier climate, lips are more prone to aging and thinning. Scared yet? Don’t fret because we’re here to help you fight against lip-aging with this Oh! My Lips Box. Bursting with lip masks, lip patches, lip balm, and lip-thingamabobs, plus some holy-grail lips colors, this box is the answer to all your winter lip problems. All goodies are made with a bold blend of potent age-delaying, moisture-enhancing, volumizing, and smoothing ingredients to give you the look of beautiful, plump, and youthful lips!

vivito balm

VIVITO Painting Sweet Lip Balm – 02 Berry Farm (12g, RV $24)

This chubby jelly-textured tinted lip balm gives rich moisture and nutrition for dry lips. With a refreshing blend of blackberry, orange peel, grape, cacao seed butter, and more natural ingredients, this cute jelly balm will be the answer to winter’s lip care concerns. It also comes in a cute tin case for on-the-go care!

vivito balm

Impressions: This is a lovely balm, which also functions as a tint. I already had the Grape Farm variety from one of the Thanksgiving Memeboxes and was happy to add to the collection with Berry Farm. Just one more to go! These balms don’t feel overly sticky and add a really nice touch of color to the lips. The color is certainly subtle, but I was actually somewhat surprised at the amount of pigmentation. This does a nice job of hydrating my lips as well and I really adore the sleek packaging. I am a huge Vivito fan since discovering them through Memebox. Each item I’ve tried has been smartly packaged and excellent quality.

lassie’el lipstick

Lassie’el Kiss Me! Glam Up! Lipstick (6ea, RV $6)

These are not one-time, disposable tattoos. They are real pigmented lipsticks packaged into these easy-to-carry lip cards, providing you with 6 different color options to choose from according to your mood, day, and occasion!

lassie’el lipstick

Impressions: When I initially saw this item in the box I thought to myself “ok, they sent as lipstick samples?”. I was not jazzed. Not even slightly. But having read up on these a bit more and also seen one in action, I think these have potential. The colors are all fairly neutral and wearable and I appreciate that these aren’t just one-time use as I had initially suspected. I’m still attempting to come up with the perfect occasion to utilize these, where a standard lippie isn’t preferable and am slightly stumped. But it’s certainly a fun and unique item. If I had younger, female relatives in my life, I might pass these on as I think they would make a great gift for a young girl.

sr liip scrub

SR Lip Scrub (30ml, RV $12)

Exfoliate away dead skin cells and deeply soothese and hydrate dry, chapped lips with SR’s Lip Scrub entriched with a blend of argan oil, tocopherol, vitamin E, snail filtrate, and pearl extracts. The gentle micro-beads soften and smooth out roughened lips for suppler, kissable pout!

sr lip scrub

Impressions: This item is tied for my favorite in the box because it really delivers on my closely held hopes and dreams when I was making this purchase. The micro-beads that are described are totally undetectable. So much so that when I initially slathered on this scrub without even reading the description, I had thought that it was a chemical exfoliant. So you don’t feel any granules (small or otherwise) scrubbing at your lips when you use this, but after 20-30 seconds of gently massaging this over and then rising off… wow… my lips haven’t looked or felt this good in months! As the photo above shows, there is more to this SR line and I am very eager to try the rest.

vivito remover

Vivito Dessin Solution Lip & Eye Remover (100ml, RV $32)

A double-layered Lip & Eye Remover that effectively melts away stubborn point makeup and skin impurities around sensitive eye contours and lips. Make sure to shake the upper and lower layers well together before application. Its gentle blend of lemon grass oil and rosehip oil has soothing and moisturizing effects as well.

vivito remover

Impressions: Another perfectly lovely Vivito product. It’s difficult to get too excited about a makeup remover, but this one is quite nice and effective. It doesn’t have any sort of overwhelming scent, which I always appreciate, and didn’t irritate my eyes at all when I used it, which sometimes occurs even with products intended for that area. I didn’t need to scrub at all as makeup essentially melted off at the touch my cotton bud or swab. I like anything that allows me to be gentle in and around my eye area and this didn’t dry my lips at all, which sometimes occurs when attempting to remove a stubborn lippie. The Vivito items might seem to have inflated RVs (which wouldn’t be anything new), but these are in-line with pricing for these products on sites outside of Meme as well. After using these items, I can see why they aren’t cheap.

rosemine balm

Rosemine Vitamin E Lip Balm – Mint Tea (12g, RV $7)

Scented with a refreshingly minty, herbal fragrance,the Vitamin E Lip Balm is richly formulated from a blend of vitamin E, ceramide, peppermint extracts, and 5 different kinds of moisturizing esential oils. It coats over dry, chapped lips with a moisture layer to lock in the moisture and to protect against external damage or dehydration.

rosemine balm lip6

Impressions: This is my other favorite item in the box. A lip balm. Who knew? But it’s SUCH a lovely lip balm! The scent is light and the texture is more gel-like than creamy. I’ve tried too many lip balms to even attempt at estimate and the large majority of them just sort of sit on your lips and don’t do much of anything. This one is instantly and miraculously hydrating and also leaves the pretties glossy finish on your lips. It also last forever. I’ve put it on before I go to bed at night and can still feel it on my lips in the morning. I mean. Come on! I love this stuff. Can you tell? I received the Rose Fairy variety in the My Pouch Essentials Memebox and have been very happily using one at home and the second on-the-go. I was one of those people who was miffed at Meme for including what are essentially duplicate items in boxes that were released so close together, but I take it all back! If you want to include these in more boxes, Meme, please have at it!

photo 5-2 oh my lips

Overall Impressions

This box cost $23 + shipping and contains 5 full-sized items. I can’t say I was thrilled upon first receiving it, but I can honestly say I am now. The Memevalue amounts to $81, though that means little to me – particular as some of my favorite products are the cheapest in the bunch (bodes well for backups!). This box fully delivered on my intent when ordering it, which is that it provided some serious relief to the dry/chapped lips I always get this time of year and made it possible for me to continue my lippie obsession without looking ridiculous in the darker F/W colors and my beloved mattes.
I’m really tempted to pick up another box while it’s still available.

Did you purchase this box? Did it grow on you as it did for me??

December Discounts

If you utilize any of the links above, you will automatically receive $5 off a purchase of $100+ or $10 off a purchase of $150+

In addition to this, you can stack another $5 discount off purchased of $30+ with the following code: FFFH0A

Get $5 off on orders when you buy 3 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE3

Get $8 off on orders when you buy 4 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE4

Get free shipping on purchases over $30 on USA only Memeshop items: no code needed!

Happy Memeboxing!

Quality Time with my Collagen Cosmetics Memebox: a Superbox #33 Review

As mentioned in a previous post, this was the first Memebox that grabbed my attention and fostered in me a rabid desire nothing else seems to satiate. I’ve now had a couple of weeks with the Collagen box and wanted to share my impressions so far.

To start off, what peaked my interest in this particular box was the distressing knowledge that the loss and breakdown of collagen in the dermal layer of skin is partially responsible for our losing elasticity and firmness as we age; leading to thinning skin, wrinkles, and sagging. Collagen is our structural support. All I can picture are the Doozers and their sticks from Fraggle Rock – all lovingly and mindfully constructed into our perfect skin and then age comes along like an awful, heedless Fraggle and just ravishes the lot.

Dramatization.

What, you don’t think of your skincare in terms of 80s children’s tv? Moving on.

Here is how Memebox described this box:

Did you know that collagen production, the main protein responsible for keeping skin firm and supple, slows downs as soon as you hit your early 20s? DUN-DUN-DUN!

No worries because we’ve got the Collagen Box to stop sagging skin and wrinkles in its tracks! Our box is filled with collagen infused products which are clinically proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and our fast acting formulas fight the loss of resilience in skin and plumps skin by supporting collagen production.

It is safe to say that you can never do with too many collagen-enriched products; they illuminate and firm the skin, fill up any fine lines, wrinkles, and acne scars, all while helping to maintain perfect elasticity.

Here’s the thing though – collagen within a skincare product doesn’t have any affect on our collagen production. I know! I can’t believe this relationship is beginning with lies. The collagen molecule is too large to be absorbed and we must use other means if we want to naturally boost what age diminishes. However, collagen is an amazing moisturizing ingredient. It holds the skin’s natural hydration and keeps it looking soft and plump. My preference is to look plump in this context rather than others. My skin was in desperate need of some rehydration so I happily parted with my $42 (including standard shipping) – 14 days later, my goodies were in hand!

The beginning of the end.
The beginning of the end.

The first thing that struck me was the heavenly aroma wafting out of the box as I opened it. I knew this was going to be the start of something very special.

Item #1: Ramosu Carestory Collagen Extract 100, 10ml (RV $36)

From Memebox:

Infused with over 17 different amino acids, this 100% concentrated Collagen Ampoule will deliver intense hydration and facilitate cell regeneration for more supple and firmed up baby-skin. Also, it doesn’t smell or feel sticky like your average collagen products, and instead it glides onto the skin refreshingly. Experience the wonders of the real Collagen Ampoule currently being used in Korean aesthetic beauty salons.

Impressions: Amino acids! This was exciting because those are proteins that actually CAN boost collagen production. True to the description, this ampoule is neither sticky or stinky. It absorbs very quickly and without residue. Memebox instructions state to use a couple of drops, but I’ve been using at least five to get full coverage on my face.

Item #2: Dermahouse Collagen Firming Cream, 30ml (RV $29)

From Memebox:

The abundant collagen, shea butter, and mango shea butter ingredients in the Collage Firming Cream work to lock in moisture and deliver beneficial nutrients deep down into your skin. With continuous use, you’ll experience disappearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improvement in the skin texture and clarity.

Impressions: The last sentence there struck me as somewhat dubious. While incredibly moisturizing, I just don’t see which ingredients could possibly lend themselves to delivering on those claims or the “firming” reference in the name. I initially really liked the hydrating qualities of this product, but quickly realized that it was too heavy for my combination skin. Within a couple of hours of application, my forehead would be gleaming rather than glowing. I plan to either try this again in the winter or just use it on my neck and body rather than face.

Item #3: Dewytree Real Collagen Nutrition Serum, 50ml (RV $39)

From Memebox:

A deeply moisturizing and nourishing facial serum infused with high concentrates of collagen, Dewytree’s popular Real Collagen Nutrition Serum treats enlarged pores, sagging skin, and signs of aging with its highly moist and nutritious formula which instigate skin regeneration and renewal.

Impressions: Ahhh this was the source of that glorious smell. That alone made me instantly fall in love with this product. In addition to the collagen, it contains hyaluronic acid, trehalose and argan oil. Again, not 100% sold on the aforementioned claims, but this product has certainly kept my skin bright and feeling nourished. It has a beautifully light texture that absorbs well, and lovely packaging.

Item #4: 3W Clinic Collagen Make-up Base, 50ml (RV $30)

From Memebox:

This silicon type Collagen Make-up Base contains blemish-control powder components for matting out and preparing the skin condition before foundation application. The high level of adherence and long-lasting formula helps maintain your makeup silky smooth all day long.

Impressions: Very nice make-up base that aids in hydration and dries to a powder finish. I’m a big fan of the greenish tone to counteract any redness in the skin. It definitely helps to keep my makeup where it should be, but I’ve also used it on its own when I didn’t want to wear makeup, but still desired that little bit of blemish control and an even skin tone. My one complaint is that I’ve learned to be incredibly careful when dispensing this product because it really just wants to all come out to party.

Item # 5: The Skin House Wrinkle Collagen Free Spot, 30ml (RV $28)

From Memebox:

This wrinkle-care product is packed with collagen and adenosine components for delivering deep, intense nourishment to the skin and nullify the signs of aging by filling in between fine lines and wrinkles. This is not an eye-only cream; it can be applied anywhere else on your skin with visible lines and wrinkles.

Impressions: Adenosine! Another exciting ingredient. I’ve recently read an overview of a study expounding on the benefits of adenosine in the diminishment of wrinkles. While I have essentially no wrinkles to speak of, I do believe in taking preventative measures! So I can’t speak too much as to the effectiveness of this product, but no wrinkles have developed since I began using it It has a wonderfully rich consistency and I really like that it’s not just an eye cream, but can be used on any problem areas.

Item $6: abelle So Hot-Burning Concentrate Ampoule, 20ml (RV $24)

From Memebox:

A unique hair ampoule that warms up all by itself and absorbs deeply into your hair, this highly concentrated ampoule is made from E.G.F, hydrolyzed keratin, hydrolyzed collagen, and hydrolyzed silk which all work to strengthen the hair cuticle and make your hair shine with a natural glow.

Impressions: I am very intrigued by this product, as it seems an excellent deep-conditioning treatment. However, the logistics of shampooing and rinsing my hair, then applying this along with a shower cap and “resting” for 15 minutes just escape me. Do I get out of the shower? Do I just make myself comfortable? This probably shouldn’t be that complicated and I do plan to try this product once I figure it out and have time for an extended shower sesh.

Overall Impressions

The full retail value of this box – as told by Memebox – is $186. Even leaving room for inflation, this box is an excellent value. I have been using almost all the products in it and will continue to do so. While I wasn’t thrilled that Memebox was somewhat perpetuating the myth that collagen products might restore or bolster the production of our own, naturally-occurring collagen, they included products with some other ingredients that may actually aid in this regard. Overall, I’m quite happy with my first box and look forward to the many I have in queue!

Go on, give it a go!

September Discount Codes

Use 41P2 with my link for $5 off any order

AFFILIATE-9345-SP9Q3-LHJQ for $5 off an order of $100 or more

AFFILIATE-7082-UMNFY-QUJO for $10 off an order of $150 or more

I Feel Fancy: a Royal Nectar Original Face Mask & Moisturizing Face Lift with Bee Venom Review

I purchased the Royal Nectar Original Face Mask & Moisturizing Face Lift after doing some extensive reading on the fascinating topic of bee venom utilized in cosmetics. Seemingly overnight, it was being touted as the natural alternative to Botox, with Royals and celebs singing its praises.
As far as Bostox – I have no issue with people choosing to partake in elective procedures and may find myself doing the same at some point down the line (a little light dabbling at most, I’m sure), but as it stands I would much prefer to go the natural route on my way to what I hope will be aging gracefully. I’m of the mindset that youth doesn’t make one beautiful, but we can certainly be our best at any age. Being in my early thirties, I think I’m already slightly late for the prevention train, but you know what they say… you better hurry and catch up!
That slight urgency is partly what led me to what can be considered a somewhat high-end product with prices of each of these items averaging at about $65. This purchase pre-dated my Korean cosmetics obsession and I realize that there are a great many, effective skincare items out there that contain bee venom and are a fraction of this price tag. However, one of these items remains a HG for me and one I will continue to repurchase.

bees-venom

First, a bit about bee venom in cosmetics. I noted in a prior post that the cosmetic benefits of bee venom are derived from its tricking the skin into believing it has been lightly stung. This causes our body to direct blood towards that area, stimulating the production of collagen and elastin, which promote skin repair. The venom also acts to remove excess keratin and sebum, eliminate acne inducing bacteria, and block inflammatory agents within skin pores to heal acne lesions. So this reaction promotes cell regeneration and has tremendous healing properties, which of course lead to the much-touted, anti-aging benefits..

bee venom honey

Chemical-Composition-of-Insect-Venoms

Royal Nectar’s Face Mask & Face Lift are made with New Zealand Manuka honey, bee venom and a soothing blend of waxes and oils. Manuka honey is quite an impressive ingredient in its own right. Clinical studies have shown it to have anti-bacterial properties, targeting one bacteria in particular – Streptococcus pyogenes – which is associated with wounds.
Real Manuka honey comes only from New Zealand because ithe Manuka tree that provides the pollen for Manuka honey is native to New Zealand.
Here are the full ingredient lists, which are wonderfully brief and fairly comprehensible. The only item that some may find unrecognizable is ‘ticaxan’, which is another name for xanthum gum and used as a viscosity agent in cosmetics. The rest is a lovely melange of bee venom, Manuka honey, and waxes/oils – as advertised.

royal nectar

manuka bee

This range of apitherapy products is produced in New Zealand by Nelson Apiaries. Formed in 1973, Nelson Apiaries Ltd is a family owned business operated by Philip and Evelyn Cropp. Philip’s grandfather started producing honey from hives in the Nelson area on a part time basis over 100 years ago. Over the past 25 years the company has grown substantially and has diversified into the natural health market., specializing now in the increasingly popular Manuka honey, bee venom and other apitherapy products. Based in the upper Motupiko Valley, Nelson Apiaries, in conjunction with it’s sister company Rainbow, now has approximately 4,000 hives sited throughout the Nelson and West Coast areas of the South Island of New Zealand. Placed in the pristine bush and forests of this beautiful part of New Zealand, the hives produce a variety of natural honeys free from insecticide or other agricultural sprays. [source]
I really love that this little gem is made by a family business and the pride they have in their product is evident in the quality of what they produce.

royal nectar

I’ve used a great many skincare items throughout my life that make a great many claims and promises. It’s rare that any of these are delivered upon, and if you are so fortunate as to find something that truly works, it typically takes a considerable amount of time and continued effort on your part to ensure this happens. I was sincerely taken aback by the essentially overnight results I saw with this mask.
It can be utilized in two ways – either as a wash off mask that you leave on for 20 minutes or so and then remove or in a thin layer as an overnight mask. I thought I would get more traction with the latter option so I opted to use this as my evening moisturizer. I’m not exaggerating when I say that my reflection greeted me with an audible, “Oh, wow” when I faced the mirror the following morning. What acne scarring I had was significantly reduced and my complexion had an overall brighter/refreshed tone. Since I began to use this under a Korean-made sleeping pack (Elizavecca Green piggy Collagen Jella Pack) I found the efficacy to be even further improved. This may be due to prolonged use, but I also believe the sleeping pack helps the product to absorb better.

My Experience – Royal Nectar Moisturizing Face Lift

royal nectar

As you can see from the above ingredient labels, the two products are essentially identical, with the main differentiation being that the Face Mask contains a greater concentration of the two main compounds. Can I pin-point the ingredient on which I can hang this ‘lifting’ clam? Not really. Do I think it’s necessary to utilize both the Mask and Face Lift in tandem? I wouldn’t say so. Though I voice this with the caveat that I am still fairly young. If my skin were more mature, I might see more benefit in utilizing these creams both day and night. As it stands, this is a perfectly lovely moisturizer and still packing those power-house ingredients, so I certainly wouldn’t poo-poo it if you’re considering purchasing one or the other. However, to me, the Mask is really the star of the show.

royal nectar royal nectar

Both products are a lovely, light cream consistency with a slight yellowish hue. They place nice with my combination skin and I think they would be appropriate for someone with dry or oily skin as well (and normal, of course). The consistency really seems quite universally-appealing. They don’t have a strong scent (which I really appreciate), though the aroma is slightly floral and sweet.

I do plan to test out some Korean products with similar compounds in order to compare and contrast, though I must admit I am partial to the fact that these particular items are manufactured at the source. I am eager to see what my findings will show and will certainly update this post accordingly.
In the interim though, I would highly recommend trying the Royal Nectar Original Face Mask. You can purchase samples direct from Nelson Honey here, which would be a nice way to dip your toe in. I would love to hear of your experience if you decide to do so!

All Up In My Face: a Too Faced Sweethearts Perfect Flush Blush Review

I have a blush problem. Well, I don’t see it as a problem, and therein lies the rub. I have many and am easily enchanted by any sweet, new thing that comes along. When you’re talking $30 blush though, enchantment only takes you so far. Lovely as this looked, I wasn’t running out to purchase it.
However, I happen to belong to a number of Makeup Sale and Swap groups on FB and I couldn’t let a good deal go by. I ended up picking this up along with the Lorac Pro 2 (both new) for a very deep discount. Getting a bargain really makes hoarding makeup that much sweeter I feel like I should add a caveat here that you really need to do your homework and ensure what you’re purchasing is authentic and also not a dumpster dive find (ew). Ask questions, ALWAYS get invoiced through PayPal so that you have recourse if something goes awry, and scan UPCs upon receipt. I’ve only had excellent experiences, to date, but there are certainly instances of things going wrong so, caveat emptor! (buyer beware)
Ok, now on to the main attraction

too faced sweethearts blush

This lovely comes in three varieties: Candy Glow, Peach Beach, and Something About Berry. They are a baked, tri-toned blush, packaged inside a cardboard heart. I mean, adorable. I went for the Candy Glow flavor because I loved the look of the peachy, pinky tones and I had a feeling this would suit my fair complexion.

too faced sweethearts blush

Here it is, looking all seductive in candlelight.

Looking at this blush inside the packaging, it certainly has a luster to it. So much so that I had a feeling this would only be suitable for the Spring and Summer months because there’s something about wearing sparkly pink in the Winter that just doesn’t feel right. Oh, but how wrong I was.

photo 3

These colors swatched so sweet and tenderly, I had to have a moment. There was none of the heavy sparkle you might have expected after viewing the product inside the packaging. When you swish through all the colors with your brush and apply, you are left with a glowing, buildable flush to your cheeks that looks incredibly natural. This blush is also roomy enough that you can pick and choose colors, if you so desire, using them as either a blush or highlight.

photo 4
WARNING: this photo contains little other makeup beyond the blush. Ok, it’s more of a humblebrag because I look goooood Jokes!

It’s the sort of healthy, bright, youthful look that you can most definitely sport year-round.
Can you even tell I’m wearing blush? You may be hard-pressed! And that’s kind of the point. While I chose this variety based on my skin tone, I truly feel that the dimensional affect you get from combining the different tones creates a color that’s basically universal and suitable for a variety of complexions.

Candy Glow was my gateway drug and I now find myself in need of the other varieties, Peach Beach in particular. Can you imagine the gorgeousness over a bit of (fake) color in the Summer? [I only do fake when it comes to tanning and mah face]

When you consider that this is a blush you can wear daily and likely never run out of, the $30 price tag doesn’t seem so far-fetched. Or I may just be preemptively justifying my imminent purchase

Where have you been all my life? A Secret Key Lemon D-Toc Peeling Gel Review

I’m going to begin this review with what some may consider a bold statement, but I truly feel it down to my core – this may just be the best skincare product I have ever used.

Soon after embarking on my voyage of beauty discovery, I realized I needed a peeling cream in my life. These creams exfoliate the skin, removing dead cells, revealing a smoother, brighter skin beneath, and evening out skin tone. Most of my previous exfoliation experience has been with abrasive cleansers. St. Ives Apricot Scrub, anyone? While I can’t dog what has been a cult favorite, I realized that a chemical exfoliant may be kinder to my skin. I’ve spent the majority of my life being pretty rough with it; my worst offense happening on those many days and nights that I didn’t pay it any mind at all. Looking back on that, I feel my skin truly deserves the daily pampering it’s now getting. Ah, the folly of youth.

My search for a peeling cream began a couple of months ago and I quickly stumbled onto what is an adorable and popular option – the TonyMoly Appletox Peeling Cream.

Appletox
The green is Appletox Peeling Cream & the red is Appletox Honey Cream

The cutest, right? The cream also smells strongly of, as you might guess, apples. While I was waiting for this little gem to ship, I stumbled onto an Instagram post from the lovely Kelsey of All These Lotions and Potions (yes, more blogger PDA may be forthcoming. I can’t help myself!). She had just hauled the Secret Key Lemon D-Toc Peeling Gel and was singing its praises. Soon after, Christine of MMnoob joined the conversation and my resistance faltered. So before I even had the Appletox in my possession, I had the D-Toc on order. I knew these beauty gurus couldn’t steer me wrong and I was not disappointed!

The Appletox arrived shortly after and it was… fine. The packaging was to-die-for, the scent was lovely, and the peeling efficacy was acceptable. Had this been all I knew of peeling creams, I may have lived out the rest of my life in blissful ignorance. But then D-Toc came into my life, and nothing was ever the same. I had high hopes, but certainly not expectations, so when my skin began peeling before I had even finished applying the product, an audible “wow” had escaped my lips. This product took off in seconds what seemed to me like a lifetime of skin gone by. I’m just going to get gross for a moment here, so fair warning – I literally had to stand over my sink when I did this because dead skin was just falling off my face in clumps. It sounds pretty hardcore, but it felt like nothing! This is one of the most gentle products I have ever used, and I would even venture to say, more so than the Appletox. The latter came with a very slight stinging sensation for maybe a fifth of the payoff. The D-Toc was SHOCKINGLY effective. I’ve just never had a skincare product deliver to this degree and so immediately. And then came the afterglow. It’s like I had a brand new face. My skin was smooth, radiant, and even-toned. Blemish scars and discoloration that I’ve accepted to be a permanent fixture were visibly reduced. I LOVE THIS GEL!! I want to shout it from the rooftops. Nothing has made such a difference in my skin as this unassuming little tube.

I promptly ran to tell my husband that despite his continued refusal to try any of the Korean beauty products I try to spritz in his direction, this… THIS he needed to experience. About a week later, he actually came asking for it and I was legitimately giddy. Why is it so exciting to indoctrinate people into this addiction? I wanted to record this moment for posterity! That, he refused, but he obligingly applied the D-Toc and soon after began a repetitive dialogue, alternating between of “gross” and “this is awesome”. When he was done and I got in my “I told you!” he noted that he will now “have the skin of a beautiful, k-pop girl” haha. The amazingly unfair thing is, I think he’s more apt to get there than I am! The man is blessed with gorgeous skin he doesn’t have to put any work into. I told him not to get any ideas about moving in on my dressing area inner sanctum, but I quite enjoyed sharing

Please do yourselves (and maybe your loved ones) a favor and try this product that has garnered instant holy grail status in my regimen and in my heart.

Currently, it can be found for $12.48 on Amazon with Prime shipping (!) and $9.99 on eBay, both with free shipping from very reputable and trustworthy sellers in SK.

Please also head over to read Kelsey’s fantastic review of the D-Toc!

LEMONDTOCPEELINGGEL

Memebox x Vagabond Youth Collab Now Available for Purchase!! (also discount codes and tutorial from Vagabond Youth)

The box contents have been revealed and seem to be a great mix of makeup and K-beauty faves. It comes with a pricetag of $23 + shipping and is ready to ship now!

Head over to Memebox for a look and check below for discount codes!

We teamed up with YouTube fashion and beauty mentor Vagabond Youth to curate an epic autumn makeover box, with its sole mission in helping you master your fall beauty routine! Whether you’re a makeup whiz, or just need a few beauty pointers, look no further than our collaboration with this chic Los Angeles chick for best-selling makeup and K-Beauty faves, as well as dazzling tutorials for beautiful everyday looks!

Look out for Vagabond Youth’s unboxing later this week to master the art of K-Beauty!

1. SHARA SHARA Color Control Cream SPF50+ PA+++ No.2 Natural Beige 40ml ($24)
Balance out uneven skin tone and add extra radiance to your complexion with Shara Shara’s CC Cream! Despite the fact that it comes in No.2 Natural Beige, this CC Cream will only color control and work to bring out the most naturally glowing complexion, and thus can be used universally by all skin colors.

HOW TO USE
Apply an adequate amount of the CC cream evenly over your face and pat it in for full adherence. Mix it in with a booster or a moisturizer like the Madeca Cream to create that supple, dewy complexion.

2. GOOD’P Madeca Cream 20ml ($24)
Ready your skin to its perfect, silky condition before dolling up with the Madeca Cream, and you’ll be able to experience how important pre-makeup skincare is! Containing loads of natural ceramide ferments and titrated extracts from centella asiatica plus utilizing good’p’s unique pre-lipid technology, the Madeca Cream absorbs fast and deep into the skin, and works to smooth out fine wrinkles as well as brighten up the overall complexion.

HOW TO USE
Evenly apply the cream over your face and let it absorb. Mix it in with a BB cream or a CC cream to add extra moisture to your base makeup.

3. COLOR WORLD Matte Eye Shadow Palette 8g ($36)
A day-to-night palette with three neutral yet glamorous shades that blend beautifully and mimic the shimmering texture of sandy beaches. Color World is a high-end brand sold only in department stores and this specific palette was designed as a special limited F/W collection for our newly launching collaboration box.

HOW TO USE
Apply directly to eyelids and blend it in for a desired intensity.

4. LIVECOWE Plenty Volume Mascara 10ml ($15)
Available at Memeshop
Creating instant oversized volume and curl, this revolutionary formula nourishes your lashes with a unique formula that strengthens and smoothes for long-lasting volume.

HOW TO USE
Curl lashes using an eyelash curler. Brush mascara brush from root to tip. Apply multiple coasts for ultra volumized lashes.

5. IDEEB Sweet Gelish Eyeliner 03 Gold Brown 3g ($9)
Available at Memeshop
Create countless looks with gel pencil formulas for precise pigmented application, inner rim lining, long-wear, contouring, and subtle to smoky looks.

HOW TO USE
Glide on gel pencil eyeliner along the lower lash line, upper lash line, and corners for the look you desire.

6. ETUDE HOUSE Tear Drop Liner 8g ($7)
Randomly selected from #1, #3, #4
Add extra sparkling glitters just under your eyes (which we call ‘tear line’ in Korea) to create a sophisticated yet dewy eye makeup. Etude House’s Tear Drop Liner comes in three different shades of glitters – white silver, pearl silver, and bronze gold.

HOW TO USE
Draw in along your ‘tear line’ (where your lower eyelashes are) to finish off eye makeup.

7. ETUDE HOUSE Proof 10 Eye Primer 8g ($7)
A creamy-textured primer to be applied before eye makeup application to increase pigment adherence and lasting power, and to mattify and smooth out skin texture. Suitable for all skin types especially for sensitive skin.

HOW TO USE
Gently dab over your lids and blend it in.

8. MISS AGE Essential Lip Rouge 01 Pure Red 8.5ml ($17)
Available at Memeshop
A rich, full-color lip rouge with long lasting colors and shine.

HOW TO USE
For a perfect lip shape: start in the middle of the lips, smoothing out to the corners of the mouth. For a glossy effect, apply a touch of clear gloss over your lipstick.

9. DEARBERRY Toc Toc Blusher 5g ($9)
Randomly selected from 01 Moonshine, 03 Peach Sorbet
Available at Memeshop
This easy to use blusher creates a subdued color finish that creates a more 3 dimensional face shape for the look of a sharper jaw line and smaller-sized face. Sebum-controlling powder absorbs sweat and oil for the look of a radiant glow.

HOW TO USE
Apply it to the skin with a gentle light touch, using the built-in puff attached to the case.

October Codes

If you utilize any of the links above, you will automatically receive $5 off a purchase of $100+ or $10 off a purchase of $150+

In addition to this, you can stack another $5 discount with the following codes:A3L5 or 2MYC or…

Get $5 off on orders when you buy 3 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE3

Get $8 off on orders when you buy 4 or more Memeboxes using the code MEMEBUNDLE4

Get free shipping on purchases over $70 on USA only Memeshop items with the code FREESHIPPING

***New code!! $7 off shipping when purchasing two or more single boxes LE2V (this codes has limited uses, so make sure you snag one of them and please use my links when purchasing)

Happy Memeboxing!

Top 10 Birthday Beauty Freebies

A new year is almost upon us and I thought it pertinent to compile a list of free birthday beauty gifts offered by various stores and brands.
This is one of the aspects of my birthday that I look forward to the most and, in case you’re of the same mindset, here’s a handy reference to ensure you don’t miss out!

I’ll start off with the freebie most of you are likely already familiar with. It’s an oldie and a goodie; something I have been enjoying for years and which also introduced me to some of my favorite brands and products.
Sephora’s Beauty Insider program offers a number of benefits, among these being a free gift during your birthday month. No purchase is necessary if you’d like to just stop by a store to grab it, but I believe you do need to purchase something in order to add this at checkout online. The gift changes each year and in 2015 we will be receiving two deluxe-sized (1.7g ea) NARS lippies in Rikugien Satin and Cruella Velvet Matte

A different gift is available for those gentlemen that frequent Sephora and may not appreciate the lippies. The 2014 gift for men was a Jack Black Turbo Wash. Though one can obviously choose any gift they like, regardless of gender.

Ulta’s ULTAmate Rewards program is fairly new, though it’s very similar to Sephora’s. You earn points with purchases, though rather than deluxe samples or special sets, these transition to money toward future purchases. During your birthday month, you earn double reward points and Platinum members also receive a $10 off any purchase coupon.
2014 was the first year a birthday freebie was offered to subscribers and this was a full-sized CK One Mascara, which was only available in-store.

It’s to soon to tell whether 2015 will bring the same, though I hope they again follow suit with Sephora and offer a new annual alternative. Though I certainly appreciate that they’ve strayed from their counterpart in offering a full-sized item.

Smashbox’s Pretty Points Rewards program offers extensive freebie opportunities and not just during your birthday month. You receive an additional deluxe sample with each order, weekly gifts every Tuesday and Thursday, and of course the birthday goodies. The only caveat here is that each of these requires your making a $35 minimum purchase. I personally find no issue waiting until my birthday month to purchase a Smashbox item or two that I may have been coveting or need to replace.

Above is an example of a past birthday gift – the Cream Liner Palette in Vixen – so I certainly think it’s worthwhile, as this exceeds the value of any of the gifts discussed so far.

By simply registering at Aveda.com you become eligible for a special offer on your birthday. This ranges from an experience at one of their salons to free products to certificates toward a future purchase.
A separate offer is available through their Invati line, if you sign up for their Invati Birthday Program. Invati is a line of products that addresses hair loss, however the gift is a seemingly unrelated Personal Blends, Pure-Fume™ Spirit or body care product ($25 value) custom blended with the aroma of your choice.

Lovely! I’m really looking forward to this one.

The Body Shop offers the Love Your Body Program. This is a rewards card that costs $10 to sign up, but saves you 10% on each purchase, provides access to special events, and various other benefit tiers when you accumulate a certain number of points. On your birthday, you receive a gift of $10 off your purchase. With just that perk, the card pays for itself, and if you are a fan of The Body Shop, seems like a no-brainer.

They certainly have a massive variety of items to make it worth your while. I’m a fan of the almond hand cream in particular.

Tarte’s Pretty Perks Program offers great benefits throughout the year. On your birthday, you receive a 20% off code that’s valid for 30 days. If you make a purchase during that period, you also receive a special deluxe sample when utilizing that code.

While World Market (Cost Plus) isn’t strictly a beauty brand or retailer, the site offers some lovely beauty items for purchase. I would recommend the artisinal, specialty soaps in particular.
Their World Explorer program offers fantastic benefits and a surprise on your birthday. In previous years, the surprise has been $10 off a purchase, though it’s possible they may deviate from this.

Bare Escentuals’ Friends and Benefits (FAB) program offers benefits such as being able to select your own personal sale day and receive 15% off. On your birthday, you are sent a voucher for a free product! Past options have ranged from eyeshadow to lip gloss. This can be picked up at a boutique or outlet or added to an online order placed during the qualifying period.

The Fresh Family Rewards program offers the typical sort of perks and, you guessed it, a birthday gift! The gift is valued at $25 and can be picked up at any Fresh boutique location. If you’re unable to visit a store or don’t have one near you, you can still receive your gift online, but this will require a $25 minimum purchase.

These rewards are fresh ta death (I apologize)

When you register with Ojon, they send you a gift for your birthday. While they don’t specify what this will be, in prior years it was a very nice three-piece set, which Included small bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and a treatment.

Their products are really lovely, so this really feels like you’re getting a special treat.

Bonus Freebie #11!!
I may have saved the best for last.

When you register to be a YSL Blackbook member, you receive fantastic perks such as free shipping, two deluxe samples with each order, and a personalized birthday gift of a full-sized product. Yaaas.

This offer previously stated ‘sample’ and now definitely denotes ‘full-sized’, so I am very eager to see what this year will bring.

That’s all I’ve got for you, lovelies. I hope you all have beautiful birthdays! I’m not sure it’s possible to have a bad birthday when you’re assured to get some beauty goodies.
Do you know of any other beauty birthday freebies that should be included in this list?