POPSUGAR Must Have August 2017 Box Review

The August box from POPSUGAR is always a highly anticipated one because it’s their anniversary box. This year is their 5th year anniversary so I knew they would be curating a very special box. I was totally checking the tracking compulsively like a crazy person. And I’m happy to say that I was not disappointed. It’s a great box!

POPSUGAR Must Have is a subscription service that sends a variety of items for women that are curated by the POPSUGAR editors. Items typically include food, beauty, home, among other miscellaneous things. Each month is $39.99/month, but you can use the code REFER5 to get $5 off your first month. It’s consistently one of my favorite subscriptions ever! I have been subscribed for over 3 years now!

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2017 Box Review

First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Bouncy Mask | $38.00
If you haven’t used this brand before, I highly recommend trying their products! It’s especially great for those with sensitive skin, since a lot of their products are fragrance free. In the winter I swear by their Ultra Repair Cream. This “bouncy” mask is a new product and it’s really mild and hydrating. It only takes 10 minutes but adds a lot of moisture to your skin. My face felt super soft after I was done and I didn’t have any irritation or discomfort. It was very soothing when it was on (definitely doesn’t feel like the mud type of mask) and has a cooling effect. It’s so refreshing in the summer heat!

IMG_1637

The container is smaller than I expected but a little goes a long way. The first time I used a thick layer, and the second time I did a very thin layer and the results were the same. It has a very light fragrance that I barely noticed when the mask was on, so if you’re sensitive to perfumed masks this could be a good one to try.

IMG_1638

Meri Meri Gold Glitter Candles | $7.50
These are cute and practical–my favorite combination. They’re longer than your typical birthday candles (about 6 inches long) and look very elegant. I love that it comes with little candle holders to stick into the cake! My coworkers and I always buy a cake for my boss for her birthday at the end of August so I’ll have a chance to use these pretty candles! I would love to see more Meri Meri products from POPSUGAR!

IMG_1636

Dogeared Friendship Bracelet | $34.00
Yay, more Dogeared jewelry! I am such a huge fan of Dogeared and their minimalistic dainty jewelry, so it’s always a good box when they feature the brand. While I love the bracelet, I think it would be an awesome stocking stuffer gift for my cousin-in-law when Christmas rolls around! (Don’t judge me y’all, planning early is how I sane when the holidays hit!) I know she will enjoy this bracelet and the message is perfect.

IMG_1640

Goodie Girl Cookies in Chocolate Chunk | $2.95
I’ll never complain about getting chocolate chip cookies in a subscription box! These are gluten free and peanut free, and taste totally amazing. My only complaint is that the package is very small. I could have eaten a huge bag of these! Though it’s probably for the better that POPSUGAR sent a portion controlled size…

IMG_1643

Cheers Lacquered Tray by Fringe Studio | $28.00
I love this tray so much! It’s so cute and festive and I adore the touch of gold. It’s approximately 12″ x 8.5″ and the sides go up 1.5″. It’s made of wood but the finish is waterproof. I really like how versatile a tray like this is. I’m currently using it to organize all my random clutter on my desk, but I think once it cools down around here I’ll use it as a cute tray to serve drinks. It would also be so pretty on our coffee table to store the ridiculous number of remotes we have and drink coasters.

IMG_1647

I can’t get over how much I love this tray! Imagine how pretty it would be to serve champagne on this tray for a New Year’s Eve party!

IMG_1649

Fringe Studio Free Spirit Journal | $16.00
This is a sponsored item from Jeep, but the journal itself doesn’t have any Jeep or POPSUGAR branding on it.

IMG_1644

The journal cover is a metallic rose gold and the “free spirit” text is embossed in white. Attached to the spine of the journal is a ribbon that functions as a bookmark. The quality of the journal feels very good, I’m trying to decide what to use it for. Maybe a travel journal?

IMG_1645

The interior is lined and has “Follow Your True North” on the bottom of each page.

IMG_1646

Shoptiques.com $25 Gift Card | $25.00
And last but certainly not least, a gift card! It’s considered an extra but since it functions as an actual gift card (not a coupon, where you have to spend more money to get something) I’m counting it as the full $25 value. It’s so generous for them to include a $25 gift card in a box that only costs $40.

IMG_1641

The box that the gift card comes in is so well designed that I’m torn about what to do with it. On one hand, I love Shoptiques and the brands they carry. On the other hand, since the box is so cute I think it would be an amazing gift!

IMG_1642

Overall I thought this was an amazing box! I love the curation so much, and each item is a hit. I’m blown away that they were able to deliver a $151.45 value box that includes an actual $25 gift card! I wish I had purchased several of these August boxes. All the items would make wonderful gifts, if only I didn’t want to keep everything for myself! I am so excited to see what fall will bring for POPSUGAR, since fall is my favorite season and usually comes with my favorite box curations as well.

Advertisements

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

Back from a little unplanned blogging break! I sort of hit a mental roadblock last month when I got the controversial Peaches and Petal box, and I didn’t really know how to review it in the most fair and honest way. After thinking about it for a long time, here’s the review! Thank you to all my readers for your support! Y’all are the best 🙂

Peaches and Petals is a monthly subscription service that sends out vintage-modern items and beauty goods. For $19.99 a month (includes shipping), you’ll receive a mix of jewelry, fashion accessories, lifestyle goods, and beauty samples.

The theme for August was “Thank You For Being A Friend”. It included a cute little inspirational sticker, which I put on a plain notebook. The pink watercolor background is pretty and very on-trend right now!

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

Golden Girls Notecards Pack of 5 | $2.00 (?)
I usually adore stationery in boxes and would love to get a set of thank you cards. I go through thank you cards really quickly and am always looking for new cute designs. Unfortunately, I don’t really care for Golden Girls and don’t have any friends who are fans either. The print quality is also pretty low.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

Funkytech Kitty Kat Two-Port Splitter | $7.25 
I would have loved this a few years ago, but my boyfriend and I are upgrading to the new iPhone 7 soon, which doesn’t have a port for headphones. But on the bright side I’m going on a long international flight with my mom next year, so I might be able to put this to use during the flight! She also really likes cats so I’ll probably just give it to her. Some subscribers received the splitter in a fox shape, which was also super cute.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

Manna Kadar Split Pan Bronzer and Highlighter and Duo | $21.00
As you can see, this item arrived completely smashed. I don’t fault Peaches and Petals, because Birchbox recently sent the exact same item out and most of them arrived damaged as well. I think there was also another box that sent them out last month with the same problem. It’s clearly a manufacturing problem. Unfortunately due to the mixing of the bronzer and highlighter, the broken powder can’t actually be used for either. It’s too pale and sparkly as a bronzer but definitely not a highlighter. I think the best bet would be as an eyeshadow.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

Friendship Surprise (Picture Frame) | $14.99
I don’t get very many picture frames in subscription boxes, so I appreciate a more unique item. The style isn’t really for me, but I’m sure I can find a friend who would like it. Since the frame is made of wood, it’s also an easy DIY to paint over the current design and do something else with it. Some subscribers received a trinket box instead of the picture frame.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

The frame is a pretty big size. Here it is with the cards and the bronzer/highlighter for size reference. It fits a 4×6 photo.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

And here’s the controversial item that I really struggled with:

2

Anchor Necklace | $1.02
The anchor necklace that they sent out came on these “Friendship” cards. Once I saw it, I instantly knew it was a counterfeit Dogeared product. The one I received from Peaches and Petals is on the left, and on the right is the authentic product from the Dogeared website. I’ve removed the logos on the packaging I received at the request of Peaches and Petals. 

1

Notice how the text is in Comic Sans? Yikes.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

The corners are also sloppily cut, probably by someone at home with a simple paper cutter and scissors.

Peaches and Petals August 2016 Review

I emailed customer service about the issue and was eventually given the following response:

“The anchor necklace that was sent out was sent to us in incorrect packaging and it was NOT what we had been shown or ordered. The item we specifically purchased had no mention of a brand. Unfortunately, our first round of boxes were shipped with the incorrect packaging as our shipping team did not catch the error. The necklaces included in our August box are in no way branded or associated to the brand, and as so we did not mention any branding on our item list postcard. Also, please note that the retail value of the item is no more than $9.99.”

I was still hesitant about what to post in my review, since I wanted to address my issues with the box without putting all the blame on Peaches and Petals (because I do genuinely believe they are not 100% at fault here). I was able to receive a little more insight about the process, shown in the email I received:

“We’re fine with you being honest, but we do ask that the brand not be shown in the review. This is because we never once stated subscribers would get a branded item, nor mentioned it on the post card. The product we purchased had pictures that did not have any brand on it what so ever. It was just the plain phrase with the necklace, which is also sold on ebay and many other sites at this time. 

When our shipment arrived our warehouse counted the amount, and we began preparing boxes. It’s 100% our fault for not looking at the product we received, as we would have stopped them from shipping with the logo. The majority of the first round of boxes left the warehouse (which included our bloggers) with the incorrect packaging, and the rest were fixed. We advised all bloggers to not over value the product (many had put the high retail value of the branded item), and that the item was worth no more than $9.99.

Many other bloggers have said the packaging on many of the first round boxes was incorrect and showed branding, and that we did state to them that we are NOT claiming this to be name brand nor does it have the value.”

My main problem is this: While I understand that Peaches and Petals did not advertise this as a Dogeared product, they still ended up sending it out. And as such, they should be taking full responsibility for it and reaching out to customers. Not all subscribers who received the first wave of boxes were contacted about this problem. I know that for sure, because I have friends who were not aware of the problem until others started posting about it. I’m sure there are others who don’t even know they got a counterfeit item!

But I’m also sympathetic to Peaches and Petals if they really did not know they were buying a knock-off product. Sourcing is a difficult job, and it is very possible that the extra packaging was just overlooked at the warehouse.

I’ve been a loyal Dogeared customer for many years now and I was horrified to see this. They’re a company that makes high quality handmade jewelry in the USA, and started from very humble beginnings. It’s sickening that people out there are ripping off their designs and giving their brand a bad name by putting out bad quality counterfeit products. Sourcing is hard and labor intensive, but it’s a job that should not be taken lightly. Whomever is in charge of sourcing at Peaches and Petals really needs to do more research and be more diligent at his or her job. Purchasing counterfeit products is incredibly harmful (it can literally end up funding terrorism!) and should be taken extremely seriously.

Verdict: I’m sorely disappointed with this box. For $19.99, the value is only $46.26 with almost half the value coming from a broken product. I also found the age demographic of this box to be strange. I was always under the impression that I (working professional in my mid-20’s) was in their target demographic. But this box felt like it was for an older audience due to the Golden Girls cards and the outdated headphone splitter. This is without a doubt my least favorite box so far. Even without the necklace problem, I would have been unhappy with this box.

Oh and one last thing: if you like the look of dainty charm necklaces, I would highly recommend checking out Dogeared! They make beautiful pieces and their customer service is top notch. I promise you that the authentic pieces are wonderful quality and will last you much longer than the cheap imitations.

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

Happy first day of September! Hard to believe how fast this Summer has flown by. But I also can’t tell you how excited I am for boots and sweater weather, pumpkin spice everything, and cooler weather!

I’ve always heard great things about Beauty DNA and read wonderful reviews about them on various blogs, so I finally caved and signed up for a subscription of my own. This is the August shipment that I received about a week ago; I’m just really behind on reviews.

Beauty DNA is a monthly subscription service that sends you one full sized beauty item based on your profile. When you first sign up, you fill out a pretty detailed profile on your preferences, and the experts at Beauty DNA will match you with a product that they think works best for you. For $25/month, you’ll receive an item from one of three categories: skincare, hair products, and body. Usually they alternate what category you receive between months, so you won’t end up getting a bunch of hair products consecutively.

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

I love that the folded card is so personalized. It’s printed for each person and you definitely get the sense that this is a shipment that is unique to you and created just for you.

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

Inside the card is a detailed explanation for why this particular product was chosen for you based on the questionnaire/profile. I’m impressed with how much they took my preferences into consideration! I was picturing a more general “match” process, but reading this I can see that there are so many factors. I am particularly grateful that they paid so much attention to the fragrance aspect. I’m very picky about fragrance in my skincare!

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

I was matched to 3Lab Hydrating-Vita Cream, which I had seen online at Nordstrom but never actually purchased. It has great reviews so I am really excited. This card also lists on the left side how to use the product, what the benefits are, and where to buy more when you run out. I’m honestly blown away by how comprehensive the card is!

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

3Lab Hydrating-Vita Cream | $140.00
And without further ado, the actual product! It’s very lightweight but moisturizing without that greasy feeling. I use it day and night and my skin feels really soft when I wake up, which I love. The citrus scent that was mentioned on the card is even less pronounced than I expected, which is another plus for me. I’m a huge fan of this so far (only used it for 3 days so far) and will probably repurchase when I run out. At $140 it’s a little on the pricey side, but the 2 oz size is generous and a little goes a long way. Also can we just stop and appreciate the fact that I got this $140 cream for just $25???

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

Keratherapy Keratin Infused Rapid Rescue | $24.00
I also received this haircare product in my box. It’s missing the cap for some reason but that doesn’t bother me since I end up losing them anyways. This spray is recommended for use on wet hair to protect it while blowdrying, or can be used to add shine and control frizz on dry hair. I’ve only used it on wet hair so far and like that it helps me style and keeps my hair soft and less frizzy. I’ve noticed that my hair feels a lot more glossy and sleek after using this, and this one bottle will last a very long time.

Beauty DNA August 2015 Box Review

My first month was amazing and I’m still in disbelief that I got $164.00 worth of product for only $25.00! Of course, I know that this kind of value can’t be expected for every box, and I’ll probably get a body item next month or something that will be lower in value, but the fact that I got such a pricey face cream even once is incredible! I definitely think the match process is helpful and carefully thought out: I can definitely see myself finding some holy grail matches through this subscription. I’m so pleased with my first box and can’t wait to see what I’ll be receiving next!

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Rounding up the end of the month is BarkBox, which ships a bit later on the calendar than a lot of other boxes. It’s always a pleasant surprise to see it on my doorstep, since my dog goes nuts when she sees it and “helps me” go through everything…by which I really mean attempt to grab the toys before I can take any photos. I’m pretty convinced she recognizes the Barkbox logo at this point.

BarkBox is $29/month if you do the month-to-month plan, but it goes down to only $18/month if you sign up for the whole year! We sprung for the whole year since it was such a great deal. Before getting BarkBox we were probably dropping between $30 to $50 a month at pet stores, and now one box usually lasts us through the month. You can use my link for 10% off any subscription. And if you use my link, they’ll donate a free box to the Bark-N-Rest Retirement Center! It’s a great cause and I’m pleased that BarkBox gives back to the doggie community!

You can choose different sizes when you order, and we get the Large box (for dogs over 50 lbs). Even though Maddie is about 46 lbs, she has the energy and strength of a much larger dog so we always size up for toys. BarkBox always has a theme for each month, and August’s is “BBQ Block Party”.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Delca Corporation Watermelon | $11.00
Cutest toy ever! How perfectly Summer is this? I’m really glad we got the larger version of this toy, and it’s the perfect size for Maddie. There’s a large disc squeaker inside that is more durable than the little bulb ones, and she completely adores running around with it in her mouth squeaking all over the place. I’m definitely buying another one when this one (inevitably) gets shredded by her!

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Healthy Dogma Bacon Barkers | $8.00
We’ve received treats from Healthy Dogma in the past and Maddie has always loved them. As with most of the treats we get from Barkbox, these are made in USA (the only exception from Barkbox has been products from Canada, which I have no objection with), contain no corn, and are made with all natural high quality ingredients.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Ingredients list: Barley, Bacon, Oats, Peas, Tomato Pomace, Canola Oil, Cranberry, Carrot, Sweet Potato, Celery, Beets, Parsley, Lettuce, and Watercress. No preservatives, additives, or artificial fillers!

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

True Dogs LLC Coke Can | $11.00
I always get excited to see a rubber toy in the box, since Maddie is so destructive and really needs chew-friendly toys. This large size is perfect and the toy is definitely ideal for dogs who love to play rough. I also think this soda can toy is so great with the theme!

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

There are openings on both ends to hold treats, which Maddie goes nuts for. She has learned to bring the toys over to me when she wants a refill; so smart and spoiled.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Throughly enjoying her newest addition to the toy collection.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

Bocce’s Bakery Chicken Treats | $10.00
Bocce’s Bakery is a brand we’ve discovered through Barkbox, and probably one of my favorite finds. They always use locally sourced, all natural, high quality ingredients and are made in the USA. All of their treats are free of any artificial preservatives, and the ingredients list is so simple: oat flour, chicken, pumpkin, and rosemary. How beautiful is that? Also note the adorable heart shapes of the treats.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off CodeButcher’s Block Steer Stick | $2.00
Every box usually contains at least 1 chew, so we’ve learned to expect that. I usually save these for when I’m clipping Maddie’s nails or something else she hates, and they’re always a godsend. Butcher’s Block is the most common brand we get, and they only use USDA approved meat sourced from the USA.

Barkbox August 2015 Review plus 10% Off Code

My box for this month comes to a total of $42.00, which I’m very satisfied with. We got a toy that will last for a long time (the soda can), and Maddie really enjoyed everything else as well. I don’t think I’ve ever had a month of Barkbox that I was dissatisfied with, since even when I’ve had an issue with a toy their customer service has been nothing short of amazing. Can’t wait to see what fun Fall themes they’ll have!

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 Review

Finally got around to photographing and reviewing my August POPSUGAR Must Have box, which got here about a week ago. It’s so hard to believe how quickly this month flew by! Please forgive my procrastination, things have just been so hectic lately.

POPSUGAR Must Have is a monthly lifestyle subscription box for women. Each month includes a variety of items, usually from categories like food, beauty, home, and fitness.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewRoyal Apothic Tea Balm Firming Eye Treatment $36.00
Love this eye cream! It’s a brand new product from Royal Apothic and is very moisturizing and absorbs quickly. It has no added fragrance, which for an eye cream is really important. I can’t tell you how many times a heavily perfumed eye cream has irritated my eyes. The packaging is also lovely, which is to be expected from Royal Apothic. Their Cuppa Cuppa Tea Mask packaging is simply to die for!

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewShortstacks Birthday Cake Pancake and Waffle Mix | $8.00
Yum! Usually I find birthday cake flavored things to be very hit or miss, and this is a definite hit. It’s not overly sweet or cloying and the pancakes were light and fluffy. Out of the past several boxes, this is hands down my favorite food item. It also fits nicely with the theme of back to school and morning routines.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewHappy Jackson YAYLUNCH Lunch Box | $10.00
I’m not the greatest at packing my own lunch, so hopefully having this box will get me slightly more motivated. The striped elastic belly band that holds the box together is really adorable, but I wish the box could stay closed without the band. I feel like it’s something I could easily lose and then the box would look kind of weird (there’s grooves for where the elastic goes) and be less functional.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 Review

Since there are no compartments and the box is not leak-proof, I imagine this being ideal for a sandwich. I wish it were more versatile, but I am still happy to try it out. Could be cute for packing dry snacks too.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 Review

American Colors Clothing Plaid Scarf | $79.00
I wish there were more color options, since I love the red scarves so much more on their website. I’m generally really happy with the scarves that I receive from POPSUGAR, but this one doesn’t go very well with anything in my wardrobe. Since this color scheme isn’t really for me, I’m going to pass it along to a friend of mine who can pull it off. That’s kind of the great part about being a subscription box junkie: I always have gifts for my friends!

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewBest Day Ever Mug | $12.00
I don’t know who did the original art for this, but it seems like a lot of different brands have this same phrase, typography, and layout. I’ve seen a slightly cheaper gold version of this same mug made by a different company on Nordstrom that I like more, and wish we had gotten that one instead. Does POPSUGAR just have an obsession with cobalt blue? I feel like everything they send us is this same color. Don’t get me wrong, I like cobalt blue…but after the first handful of blue items (crossbody, umbrella, stationery, clutch, the list could go on) a girl starts craving different colors!

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewMeri Meri Toot Sweet Pink Stripe Napkins| $6.00
Never thought I would be excited to get napkins, but these are really pretty and unique! I can’t imagine when I’ll use them (maybe a nice brunch or girls night?) but I’m looking forward to it. If fancy paper napkins aren’t for you, there are a lot of DIY ideas on Pinterest for what you can do with them. I’m especially digging the idea of turning them into little banner garlands.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewMy Yoga Works 3 Month Trial | $45.00
I’ve been so lazy lately and skipping a lot of my yoga and barre classes, so perhaps this will help kick me back onto the routine. I imagine this service is perfect for someone with a busy schedule or who likes to workout at night (I’m definitely guilty of this), since you can access the classes 24/7. All my classes are early in the morning before work, which is part of the reason why I’ve been skipping so often. Sleeping in is just too tempting! Can’t wait to try out some online yoga.

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 ReviewFolgers Iced Cafe Caramel Macchiato Flavored Coffee Drink Concentrate | $5.00
This is listed as an extra, and even though it’s not terribly exciting, I think it’s a good choice for a back to school themed box. The bottle is much smaller than I imagined it would be: this thing could easily fit in your pocket. I’m thinking back to college days and secretly glad we didn’t have these around. I probably would have been hooked on this stuff…

POPSUGAR Must Have August 2015 Review

The total value for this box is $201.00, which is high even for POPSUGAR standards. However, it’s not one of my favorites. Guess it’s just even more proof that high value doesn’t always mean customer satisfaction! Some of my favorite boxes have actually been the low value ones. Interesting how that works out, right?

While I definitely found some useful stuff and think the items match well with the theme, I didn’t love every item and especially wasn’t a huge fan of the big ticket item. Nonetheless I think it’s a solid curation and it sounds like lots of people really liked this month, so I’m happy for them and excited for September!