Simple, Ultra Black Smokey Eye & Luminous Skin (Perfect Look for Valentine’s Day!)

With Valentine’s Day this week, I wanted to share my favorite sultry makeup look!  I only wear this for special occasions/nights on the town.  Details on how I got this look below!  Also, to get soft, romantic curls I followed … Continue reading

Summer TestTube


I’m so in love with Birchbox and the idea of new beauty products and samples being shipped to your door. My friend Josephina told me about the New Beauty TestTube and was instantly sold on it. Unlike Birchbox it only comes 4 times per year, but it’s overflowing with full-sized products, generously sized samples and the New Beauty quarterly magazine (normally about $12 on it’s own) for just $29.95 per quarter! You do pay for shipping with this service so it comes out to $39.80 per quarter total.

You end up getting way more than you paid for considering some of the full-sized items in the box retail between $10 and $50! And you always get more than one full-sized item. I love love love TestTube!!! I’ll be reviewing each tube I get, providing details on the full-sized items I received and a brief description of the deluxe samples.

Here’s a peek into the summer TestTube!




Full-Sized Items Inside (Valued at a total of $54.98):

Mally High Shine Liquid Lipstick in Blossom ($20)

What it is: A sheer lipgloss in a twist tube with a brush applicator

My Thoughts: This is definitely not a lipstick like the title suggests. It’s a sheer lipgloss and it’s great. It has a very emollient texture and a sheer mauvish-pink color. The tube is also really elegant looking with gold and snake skin. It also has a lipsticky smell to it, which I like. While the gloss is great, for the $20 price tag I don’t think it rivals my favorite lip glosses enough to fork over the cash for it. But the full-sized tube came in my box so I’m not complaining!

Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Serum ($20.99)

What it is: An anti-aging serum packed with retinol and Hyaluronic Acid

My Thoughts: I’m a big fan of Neutrogena skincare so I was excited to try this serum. It’s full of skin-brightening retinol and hydrating Hyaluronic Acid to smooth skin and reduce the look of fine lines while diminishing age spots. While I don’t have a lot of these skin issues at this stage in my life, I do use anti-aging products daily and Neutrogena is known for making fantastic anti-wrinkle products. I’ve been using this daily and would definitely pay full price for this when I run out. It goes on smoothly, absorbs quickly without feeling greasy and my skin feels great after using.

Neutrogena Brightening Eye Perfector ($13.99)

What it is: A concealer, brightener, depuffer and sun protectant in one

My Thoughts: This is a neat product because it’s a concealer and eye treatment in one. While hiding under eye circles well it also brightens and depuffs with a blend of vitamins and antioxidants and protects from the sun with SPF 25! It goes on really smoothly and blends like a dream with a great applicator brush, although I use my BeautyBlender to apply it. Love this product and would definitely purchase.

Deluxe Samples Inside:

It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin (Full size cost $20)

What it is: A leave-in conditioning hair treatment

My thoughts: I am seriously loving this stuff! I received a really generous sample bottle of this treatment. I’ve been using it daily for the past week and have not quite used up half the sample yet. First, it smells AMAZING. It has a thicker substance than most leave-in conditioners I’ve tried, but it absorbs quickly and leaves no residue or weighted feeling in the hair. This awesome product defrizzes, restores protein, makes styling easier, protects against heat, etc. I’ve been using it before I put in my MoroccanOil and my hair feels amazing. I will be buying a full-sized bottle when I run out of this generous sample.

LashFood Eyelash Conditioner (Full size cost $80)

What it is: A lash treatment that thickens, darkens and lengthens with long-term use

My thoughts: I’ve only used it twice since I received it but the sample tube is a really large size so I’m hoping to see some results before I run out! It’s supposed to work within 3-6 weeks. I’m not sure I’d purchase a the product due to the hefty price tag but if it really works then it may be worth it!

Hydroxatone InstantEffect 90 Second Wrinkle Reducer (Full size cost $60)

What it is: An eye serum that provides a temporary fix for wrinkles and puffy eyes

My thoughts: I used this to depuff my eyes twice so far. The first time I must have used too much because as soon as it dried I was left with white streaks all around my eyes. I washed it off immediately. I tried it again the next day with a much smaller amount and it did tighten and depuff my eyes. I feel like a good eye cream (like this one) or a splash of cold water would do the same. Would not purchase. It may work wonders for temporarily smoothing wrinkles. I didn’t have any to test that on. 🙂

Lumene Time Freeze Firming Night Cream (Full size cost $21.99)

What it is: An anti-aging night cream

My thoughts: Like all their samples, this was a generously sized sample jar. I’ve tried a lot of night creams and am really picky. This is not nourishing and hydrating enough for my skin type so I tried it once and haven’t used it again. It may be right for someone whose skin is normal to oily. I prefer a much richer night cream.

Jane Iredale Tantasia (Full size cost $36)

What it is: A bronzer and self-tanner for face and body

My Thoughts: I have not tried this yet but may put it on my legs this weekend since I plan on wearing a lot of dresses. It’s just too hot for jeans!

Smashbox Photo Finish Oil-Free Foundation Primer (Full size cost $36)

What it is: A water-based primer that preps skin for foundation by allowing a smoother and more even application

My Thoughts: I haven’t tried this yet but I love all things Smashbox so I’m sure it’s amazing.

AHAVA Time to Hydrate Essential Day Moisturizer Normal to Dry Skin (Full size cost $39.50)

What it is: AHAVA’s products are full of minerals from the Dead Sea. This moisturizer has amino acids, Vitamin E and Aloe.

My Thoughts: This was a generous sample size and I’ve been using it every day this week. I really love it. It has a rich texture and my skin feels supple and happy after use. I would not purchase only because it doesn’t have sunscreen in it. I don’t like to have to wear both sunscreen and day cream, I only use products that have both. I would try other things from this line, though.