Thursday, March 20, 2014

Julep April window is OPEN

Click HERE to see the box selection for this month with swatches.

This month features 2 blushes, 2 bronzers and brushes, along with some vivid polish colours. This collection is right up my alley so if I actually wore nail polish often, I'd probably do the full upgrade!

I'm either going to be very reasonable and use my Jules for the Modern Beauty box (blush and bronzer) or the Bombshell box because I love Kayla, the purple polish so much:

OR, be a little less reasonable and have some add-ones. I'm actually interested in the bronzer so I feel like getting Modern Beauty with Kayla as an add-on... And I love brushes too much and have honestly not found "the" bronzer brush so I feel like adding that one, or even both brushes... With the free basic box, I could be looking at 35$US (maybe 40$CAN) for the blush, bronzer, 2 brushes and Kayla polish. Doesn't feel like a bad deal, but free would be better. I've got 3 more days to reconsider!

What do y ou think of this month's box? Anyone upgrading, adding on, etc? Or skipping perhaps?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A bit of CUTE at the Office (non-makeup)

I like cuteness A LOT. I bring a bit of it to the office with me to personalize my work area :) 

There's my baby platypus plush that I keep on my computer tower (and binder and kleenex)

There's my characters from My Little Pony, the best cartoon show ever!!!! :D I currently only have Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie because my 6 year old daughter asked me to bring back Rainbow Dash (the blue one). Only reason that she didn't ask me to bring back the other two is because I bought them for myself and she also has them at home, hehe. We're both fans of the show but honestly and weirdly enough, I'm a bigger fan than she is. They are on my computer screen stand. 

This is the next thing I'm working on; cutie pie sleeping puppies! I was going to put them on my filing cabinets but since I'm changing offices in the next few weeks, I'm going to keep them aside for personalizing my new space. 

Along with this, I have photos of my children of course, and I post some inspirational phrases or ideas once in a while. Right now I only have a Buddhist reminder of the 8-fold path:

1. Right View
2. Right Intention
3. Right Speech
4. Right Action
5. Right Livelihood
6. Right Effort
7. Right Mindfulness
8. Right Concentration

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Julep Bare Face Cleansing Oil + Konjac Cleansing Sponge - Impressions Review

I ordered these two products from Julep recently (it was actually an option for the February monthly box) and wanted to give a quick review after trying them for a couple weeks! 

I'm a big fan of Julep's products, from their body frosting, hand cream, pedi crème, argan oil, mascara, etc. Overall, I've been pleased with the vast majority so I had high expectations - let's see if the products are living up to these expectations!

Thoughts - Bare Face Cleansing Oil by Julep

First, the Bare Face Cleansing Oil seen below. This is 104ml of product and sells for 28$US (22.40$ for Mavens). I have to start by saying that this is the first cleansing oil I've tried, after longing to try the higher end ones by Shu Uemura. I have no frame of reference when it comes to cleansing oils. 

I like the pump, it doesn't dispense too much product, so I've been using 3-4 pumps - no wasting. It works as a cleansing oil should, being oily when massaged on the face, then emulsifying when we add some water and continue to massage the skin, clearing impurities. I've used it with my hands/fingers as well as with the sponge (review below) and found it to be nice, light and leaving my skin soft to the touch, without being greasy. 
I don't wear a lot of makeup but I normally have foundation or BB cream on, which it removed well. 

There's a pleasant lemony scent to this oil that I enjoy and find fresh and clean. 

I very much enjoy this cleansing oil. Like most Julep products, in my opinion, it's worth purchasing through Maven secret or seasonal sales, as part of a monthly box OR possibly with the Maven discount, but I'm not ready to say I'd pay the full 28$, especially since that's nearly the price of a well-known and established high end brand like Shu Uemura (though I never tried that one and can't compare)!

Now onto the Konjac Cleansing Sponge (seen below)

The Julep Konjac Cleansing sponge is sold for 12.00$ (9.60$ for Mavens). The konjac sponge is made from the konjac plant, and that's really the only material used! Kind of like how a real loofah is made from the loofah plant... The Julep version has enriched it with charcoal which is supposed to help clear the skin.

This sponge came pre-moist in a plastic bag. I found it weird that it was already moist in the package... but then I understood. The sponge dries to a rock-like hardness. It goes right back to a spongy texture when wet, but I imagine it would put off customers to receive a weird rock to wash their face with!

You can use the sponge with water only to exfoliate, with lathering cleanser, or with the cleansing oil to wash. I enjoyed it with a regular lathering cleanser, felt like it got right in there and really cleared everything, more than washing with my fingers only and the lather was much better.

The sponge is INCREDIBLY SOFT. I couldn't imagine it would be so freakin' soft! It's a perfect daily exfoliator because of how gentle it is; I don't think this would irritate even the most sensitive skin. This sponge would be good to use daily, with a "harsher", different, exfoliation once a week and this is what I've been doing.

Concluding Thoughts

I have to say, I'm enjoying both of these products a whole lot, and I would recommend them to anyone who is thinking of revamping their cleansing routine. Especially if the monthly box opens up again in the future with these two products for 20$, go for it! The sponge in particular is really a no-loss product as far as I'm concerned. With cleansers, it's tough to know how skin will react and a lot of times it takes adjustment even if the product is high quality, but I don't believe you should have any problems with the sponge, it's just an effective way of cleansing your face with your existing cleanser.

Thanks for reading!