July Book of the Month Review and Coupon

I've always been an avid reader and I've wanted to sign up for Book of the Month for a while, but I never did because usually I just borrow books from the library instead of purchasing them. But then BotM had a $5 promo, so I had to sign up! Plus, the selections for July were really good.

*Disclaimer: This box was purchased by See, Shop, Love! Post contains affiliate links.

Book of the Month was founded back in 1926 by Harry Scherman! I had no idea the club had been in existence for that long. The modern-day club sends you one hardcover book per month for only $16.99 with free shipping. You get to choose the book from five available selections. It's a little cheaper with three- and six-month options, too:
  • Monthly: $16.99 per month
  • Three Months: $44.97 every three months ($14.99 per book)
  • Six Months: $143.88 every six months ($11.99 per book)
You can also add an extra book to your box for only $9.99 per book and skip any month. I think $16.99 for a hardcover book is an excellent price, considering retail is usually upwards of $25 at stores like Barnes & Noble.

July selections are now closed, so if you subscribe now it'll be for August's selections. I chose Missing, Presumed by Susie Steiner. Each month, judges handpick the selections, and this one was chosen by Maud Newton. Here's what she has to say about the book:
A beautiful young Cambridge grad named Edith Hind, vanishes from her house on a snowy winter night, leaving behind her cell phone, her keys, her coat, a broken wine glass, and some drops of blood. Surely the culprit must be her handsome boyfriend? Or, her needy best friend? Or, the affable cold-blooded killer just out of prison? Or? 
One tantalizing thing about Missing, Presumed is that the mystery feels as though it should be easy to solve. It's a hard whodunnit to puzzle out. The author embeds clues in intricate psychological portraits of each of her characters. Every cast member is full of surprises. All of them have secrets and most are characters prone to telling half-truths. My suspicions kept shifting as I read.
I knew I wanted this book right away, but I did take a look at the other selections just to be sure there wasn't another I liked more. Nope. This one was it! I love crime stories and books that make you think, so this one sounded perfect for me. I'm only a few chapters in right now but I really like it so far.
Bottom Line: I'm excited about Book of the Month and I think I'll really like this service! It's convenient that you can skip a month, so I don't have to worry about getting books I won't read. I think it's an incredible deal for any book lover!

July Play! by Sephora Review

When I saw that the theme spoiler for July's Play! by Sephora box was "Effortless" I thought, well that isn't helpful. That could be anything. Turns out they included samples for an effortless summer, and the box is pretty good!

*Disclaimer: This box was purchased by See, Shop, Love!

If you haven't heard of Play!, it's a fairly new box from Sephora. Subscriptions have been on a waiting list and the waiting time has been long and frustrating for some, but I think they're opening up more and more subscriptions recently. You can check your status by entering your email address into the Play! site, and you should also get an email when a spot opens up.

Anyway, it costs $10 per month and shipping is free, but if you live in NYS like me there's sales tax, bringing the total to $10.80. That's nothing terrible, though, because I think this box is an excellent value for the price.

Each box comes with a little drawstring bag with the samples inside. I think this is a cute idea, but I don't really know what to do with the leftover bags each month. I guess I'll figure out a way to use them as storage for all the samples I have building up in my closet!

You also get a Play! pass that's good for a tutorial with a Sephora associate using the products in the box and 50 extra Beauty Insider points with any purchase.

I think this month the samples varied a little based on your Sephora profile. I have oily skin, so I received the box catered towards that skin type.
  • First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser with Red Clay - I actually use this cleanser currently and I really like it. It's not too expensive for a full-sized bottle and it works well to remove excess oil and balance my skin.
  • Nest Fragrances in Citrine - I've never tried a Nest perfume that I didn't like, but I wasn't sure about this one since it has notes of freesia and fresh lotus flower. I generally hate anything freesia, but this one is so nice! It's not overly-floral and the woody base balances out the floral perfectly for me.
  • OUAI Wave Spray - I used to use wave sprays all the time when my hair was longer, but for some reason they don't work so well on my short hair. It doesn't make sense to me. Anyway, this one is formulated to give extra texture, volume, and shine. It smells really nice and did give my hair added texture. I'll use this as an alternative to my styling cream.
  • Smashbox Photo Finish Pore Minimizing Primer - The last time I tried this primer it made me break out, but so far so good this time around. The texture is velvety smooth and it's especially formulated for oily/combo skin.
  • Too Faced Soleil Matte Bronzer in Chocolate - This is my favorite bronzer! It smells like chocolate and gives a great matte glow. I prefer bronzers without shimmer and this one is perfect.
  • beautyblender blotterazzi - I've really wanted to try this for a while because I love my original beautyblender, but I wasn't quite sure how effective it would be and I didn't want to waste my money on something that didn't work. I'm glad I got this in a box and didn't purchase it at retail price because it did absolutely nothing to soak up oil on my skin. If you have a regular beautyblender, just press it against your face because that's basically all this does. It didn't absorb any oil, in my opinion. Do not recommend.

Bottom Line: I loved everything in July's box, save for the blotterazzi, but I'm still glad I got to try that because it confirmed that I shouldn't buy a full-sized version!

July Chococurb Nano Review

You what I really love? Chocolate. I've been wanting to try a chocolate box for a while, but a lot of them are kind of expensive. Enter Chococurb Nano, a new subscription from Chococurb that's only $10 a month!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review.

Chococurb isn't just any chocolate box, they send treats that are fair trade certified, USDA organic, and beyond! The Nano box is a great way to sample all different types of chocolates for a really affordable price.
  • One Month: $10 per month
  • Six Months: $54 every six months ($9 per month)
  • 12 Months: $96 every 12 months ($8 per month)
Boxes ship on the 14th of every month and shipping is free to U.S. and Canadian addresses. They also ship internationally to Germany and England, and shipping to all other European countries, Australia, and New Zealand is calculated at checkout.

So, it's July. And it's hot and humid here in Rochester, and probably pretty much everywhere else. When temperatures are 70°-79°F, your box will ship with a cold pack and cool shield foil bubble wrapping. Temperatures above 80°F call for a cold pack and cool shield foil bubble wrapping inside a styrofoam container. My box arrived as the later option. Unfortunately it didn't keep the chocolate from melting, but that didn't bother me, I just let them reconstitute in the fridge for a little while, but I wanted to point that out for anyone who lives in a really hot climate.

The box featured five chocolates, and unfortunately there was no informational card included. The card in the above photo just had some general information about Chococurb on it. But here's what was inside:
  • Menakao Milk Chocolate 44% - This bar is "truly Madagascar" and is made from Madagascan vanilla with notes of caramel, and fruit, acidic notes from the Madagascan cocoa (info taken from the Menakao website). I loved how smooth this was, and the touch of acidity blended perfectly and kept the bar from being overly saccharine. The packaging features a Merina woman, which means "people of the highlands."
  • Seattle Chocolates Birthday Cake Batter Truffle - I love birthday cake flavored chocolates! I've had the Seattle Chocolates Birthday Cake Batter chocolate bar before, but this was so much better. It was smooth and rich and absolutely delicious. It has a birthday cake mix center with confetti pieces.
  • Ethereal Confections - Here is where I wish there was an info card, since I don't know anything about this other than the brand name. It was a delicious little piece of dark chocolate, though!
  • Chocolat Dolfin Noir Citron - I couldn't find this exact chocolate on the Dolfin website, but they're a Belgian brand that makes lots of interesting flavor blends. This was really interesting and had a good lemon flavor without being overpowering.
  • TCHO Mokaccino - I've also had this brand and particular flavor before and I could eat a million of them. It's just such a perfect blend of coffee and chocolate flavors!
Needless to say, these little chocolates did not last long in my house. Actually, I exhibited just the tiniest bit of self control and did manage to stretch out their existence to two days. I ate the smaller ones first and saved the Menakao bar for last.
Bottom Line: I was impressed by this Chococurb Nano box and I would definitely subscribe! Some of the pieces were small, but considering the entire box only costs $10 I don't think that's a bad deal. I am a bit ridiculous and regularly buy more expensive chocolates, and considering the brands here I think the amount of chocolate is very fair for the price of the box. Everything in July's offering was delicious and I would love to get chocolates like these every month!

Introducing ORLY Breathable Treatment + Color!

ORLY just launched a brand new nail treatment called Breathable Treatment + Color and I have an exclusive first look review for you! I'm obsessed with nail polish -- I have two huge boxes full of polishes under my bed -- so I'm always looking for new colors and products to try. The new Breathable line is really unique and I think you'll love it!

*Disclaimer: This product was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review.

If you're familiar with nail care at all, you'll know that it's generally accepted that you shouldn't wear polish all the time because your nails need some time to breathe. But, if you're like me, then going a day without any color on your nails just isn't going to happen! Enter the Breathable Treatment + Color polishes: they allow oxygen and hydration to pass through to your nails while still keeping them vibrant and beautifully colored!

The Advanced Oxygen Technology allows air and hydration to penetrate the nail, and they also contain argan oil and vitamins B5 and C to help promote hydration, heal damaged nails, and stimulate nail growth. That's a lot of bang for your buck!

ORLY kindly sent me two colors to try: a gorgeous coral/red and soft light pink creme. I couldn't find any names on the bottles for the colors, which is why I'm just describing them instead of providing names. I absolutely adore the coral, since that's probably my favorite color to wear on my nails and is perfect for summer. The light pink is really pretty and understated.

These don't require a base or top coat because they're an all-in-one formula. I applied two coats of the coral shade last night (per the directions on the bottle) and it went on very smoothly and dried fairly quickly. The brush is wide and easy to control. I was pleased with how evenly the color applied.

I didn't swatch the light pink shade, but here's what two coats of the coral looks like! So pretty! I'm very excited to keep using these to see how well they work for my nails. So far, so good though!

You can purchase the new ORLY Breathable Treatment + Color now online at ORLY's website. They'll be available in stores (ULTA, JC Penney, and salons nationwide) in August. Each bottle is only $8.99.

Bottom Line: I love these polishes! I think the idea is so unique and really innovative, and I'm definitely going to be purchasing more shades!

July Beauty Box 5 Review

The theme for July's Beauty Box 5 is "Road Trip Ready," and it has five great products to keep you looking great wherever you're going!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review.

Beauty Box 5 sends deluxe samples and full-sized items each month for only $12. Shipping is free to U.S. addresses and $3 to Canada. Like the name suggests, each box will have five products ranging from color cosmetics to skincare, and more!

This month's box had all full-sized items! I think that's the first time I've gotten one like that in the two or so years I've been receiving their boxes. They always send a good amount of full-sized items, but it was really nice to have all five of them be so this month.

  • Skinny Tan Mini Mitt ($4,95) - This is a "mitt-lette" for applying streak-free self-tanner without staining your fingers. I don't use self-tanners so I will probably pass this off to a friend who does, but it's unique and a great idea,
  • Hikari Cosmetics Eye Shadow ($13) - I received the shade "Moonlit," which is perfect for me (more photos and swatches below). It's a dark brown shimmer that will go great with my everyday neutral eye look.
  • Sweep Rose Gold Tweezers and Mirror ($14) - These tweezers are really pretty; I love rose gold. I just used them tonight and they grabbed every little hair from my eyebrows that I wanted to remove. I hate when you get tweezers and they aren't sharp enough or strong enough to get those hard-to-pluck hairs, but these were perfect! The little mirror is really cute, too (at least, I think it's a mirror--the other side is reflective).
  • Beauty Box 5 Round Blending Brush ($10) - This is a really nice brush with soft bristles. I have another BB5 blending brush from a previous box, but this one is fluffier and will provide a softer blend than the other one.
  • Chella Tantalizing Taupe Eyebrow Color Pencil ($18) - I like Chella's products a lot and this eyebrow pencil is perfect for me. It's a dark-ish brown, but it blends perfectly with my dark brown/black eyebrows. I like that the tip is super fine, too, which makes it easy to fill in my brows without looking too heavy.
Hikari Cosmetics Eye Shadow in Moonlit

Swatches of the Hikari Eye Shadow (left) and Chella brow pencil (right)

Bottom Line: July's box had a total retail value of $59.95! That's such a great deal for a box that only costs $12, especially since all of the products were full-sized. I'll use the tweezers and the Chella pencil the most, and I really like the Hikari Cosmetics eyeshadow.

Degustabox Welcome Box Review and Coupon

Me gusta Degustabox! This food subscription is available in five European countries (more on that later) and just launched in the U.S. When they asked me if I would be interested in reviewing a box I said yes right away because I love me some good snacks!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review. Post contains affiliate links.

Degustabox sends 10-15 full-sized surprise snacks and food items, and this box is huge. It's available in the U.S., Spain, France, Italy, Germany, and the U.K. Boxes cost only $19.99 per month and shipping is free! I can't get over that price. I think you'll understand more once you see how much stuff is in this box!

I took a picture of the box with an old Birchbox on top for scale. I 100% did not expect the box to be this big! It's also about 10 inches or so tall (that's my estimate, could be more or less, but the general idea is that this is a huge box for only $19.99).

Everything is carefully packaged, and I loved the sticker on top of the paper wrapping!

Some of the lighter items were at the top of the box, with the bottles and heavier items wrapped in bubble wrap towards the bottom. It's obvious that everything was packaged with care.

Before I show you all of the products inside, let me backtrack a little and tell you more about the service itself. The boxes ship on the 19th of each month and will have at least 10 full-sized products for less than what you would pay in stores and from a variety of brands. Once you try everything, review the products on the Degustabox site for five points per survey. Once you amass 100 points you can get a free box! You can also earn points by referring friends (50 points per referral) and purchasing gift subscriptions (25 for one month, 50 for three months, 75 for six months).

I wish I had filmed my reaction from start to finish as I unboxed this Degustabox! The first thing I said when I saw it on my doorstep was something along the lines of "holy sh*t," and the excitement grew from there. Every item I pulled out was a winner! Here's what was inside:
  • Honees Cough Drops - I had a nasty sinus infection with post-nasal drip when I got this box, so these cough drops could not have come at a better time. They are filled with pure liquid honey and cool the nasal passages with essential oils of eucalyptus, peppermint, and lemon. They were so soothing and just what I needed.
  • Haribo Sour Gold Bears - I LOVE Haribo gummy bears! I also love sour candies and I didn't even know these came in a sour variety. I have this bag on my desk at work and I love eating a few here and there as a treat to help me get through the work day. They're quite sour, but they have great flavors. My favorite is the pineapple one.
  • Wise Popcorn - This came in two flavors: Sea Salt and Cinnabon. Yes, Cinnabon. I really liked the Sea Salt because it was light and airy, but the Cinnabon flavor is just out of this world. These are a great snack alternative to heavier things like chips.
  • Vita Coco Coconut Oil - This 100% organic, virgin coconut oil is cold pressed and can be used in a variety of ways. I've never actually cooked with coconut oil, but I love using it on my skin (especially my cuticles) and hair as a deep moisturizer.
  • Orchard Valley Cashews and Cranberry Almond Cashew Trail Mix - I have to admit that I passed these off to my dad and brother because I'm not the biggest fan of cashews and almonds, but they said they were delicious! Both snacks are verified non-GMO by the Non-GMO Project and are free from artificial colors, artificial flavors, and preservatives.
  • Elmhurst Harvest Real Walnut Milk - I've never had walnut milk before, but this sounds interesting. I don't like drinking non-bovine milks by themselves, but I will definitely use this to mix into smoothies. It's made with real walnuts (hence the name) and has equivalent calcium to traditional 2% milk.
  • Briannas Italian Vinaigrette - I love vinaigrettes and I think this one will be perfect to use in a pasta salad. It's made with vinegar, choped olives, romano cheese, rosemary, and basil. 
  • Topo Chico Flavored Sparkling Water and Mineral Water - These are the featured products of the month and are from Mexico. Topo Chico waters have been bottled at the source since 1895, which was a favorite of an Aztec princess, according to legend. I haven't tried the mineral water, but the sparkling water had a light lime flavor and was incredibly refreshing.
  • Soy Vay Veri Veri Teriyaki - This has no preservatives or additives and is great for grilling, baking, or stir-frying. I'm going to use this as a chicken marinade for sure!
  • Jif Cinnamon Peanut Butter - You guys, CINNAMON PEANUT BUTTER! Can you tell that I love cinnamon? I had no idea this existed and I'm so glad it was in the box! It's delicious and I absolutely love it. It has seven grams of protein, too.
Can you believe this box only costs $19.99? I still can't. There are so many full-sized products! This is such a great deal.
Bottom Line: If you're looking for a fun way to try full-sized versions of new foods then Degustabox is the perfect box for you! Between their huge boxes, review rewards program, and free shipping, I can't get over what an amazing value it is!

New Scarf Subscription: Scarftique!

I haven't written about accessories lately, but if you've been reading my blog a while you'll know that I love scarves. They're my favorite way to jazz up an outfit, so Scarftique is a new subscription that's perfectly suited for me!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review.

Scarftique has a passion for quality scarves and they'll send them to your door each month for an affordable price. They ship out of Brooklyn and have the following pricing options:
  • Monthly: $12 per month
  • Three Months: $35 every three months
  • Six Months: $60 every six months
When you pick your subscription option you can also choose to add on another scarf for $6, accessories for $4, and/or two surprise gifts for $5! You'll also fill out a short profile where you can select the style of scarf you want (traditional, infinity, or a combination of the two), what patterns and colors you like, and your overall fashion style.

I love the beautiful gold paper that my scarf came wrapped in! This was shipped in a padded envelope with the gold package inside. I did not choose to add any extra items or accessories, so this is a review of the scarf only.

I was just thinking that I didn't have as many lightweight scarves for summer, so this one is perfect! It's a nice infinity scarf made of breezy material. I wrote in my style profile that I liked infinity scarves, had no pattern preference, and preferred blue, black, and purple for colors. I also stated that yellow and orange were my least favorite colors, and even though they are both present in this scarf I didn't mind because they went well overall with the other colors.

Sorry for the bad phone photo, but here's the scarf on! I can't take selfies with my DSLR, but this gives you an idea of how it looks. I much prefer infinity scarves because, I don't know, I think they just look better than traditional ones. I love the colors in this and how lightweight the material is!
Bottom Line: Scarftique is a really fun subscription for anyone who's obsessed with scarves like I am! I think the $12 price is really fair considering that's about what I pay when I go buy them at brick-and-mortar stores. You can also add on other accessories and surprise items for really cheap, which is a great idea, too!

New School Supplies Subscription: KidPackz!

When I was a kid, one of my favorite times of the year was going back to school shopping with my mom at the end of summer. Going back to school was never that exciting in itself, but I loved buying new crayons, folders, and everything else I'd need for the upcoming year. KidPackz is a new subscription service that delivers all of that goodness right to your door!

*Disclaimer: This box was sent to See, Shop, Love! in exchange for an honest review.

KidPackz has everything your child will need to start the school year off right. It isn't just for back-to-school, though -- I think this box is great for year-round fun! Here are their pricing options:
  • Monthly: $15 per month
  • Three Months: $42 every three months
  • Six Months: $156 every six months
KidPackz is customized based on grade level, and the boxes are currently best suited for elementary school-aged kids (grades 1-5). In the near future they are looking to reach students in both younger and older age brackets.

I would have loved to receive a box like this when I was a kid! I think parents will love it, too, since it allows them to stock up on school supplies without ever having to leave the house. Like I said previously, even when school's not in session, I still think it would be a fun delivery. This box contained:
  • 10 Colored Pencils
  • Calculator
  • 300 Piece Cupcakes Puzzle
  • 10 Colored Markers
  • Little Dolphin pencil pouch (with goodies inside)
  • Four pencils
My favorite item is the Little Dolphin pouch! It's so cute and I actually needed a pencil pouch to take to work. The puzzle is a fun addition, too. The markers, crayons, pencils, and calculator are something every kid will need for school.

Inside the Little Dolphin pouch was more pens, pencils, and crayons.
  • Visit KidPackz to learn more and subscribe!
    • Use coupon code LAUNCH for 10% off at checkout
  • Connect with them on Facebook and Instagram
Bottom Line: If your child likes getting packages in the mail I think KidPackz is an excellent subscription for them! I would have really enjoyed getting this box as a kid, and I think it's a great value for parents.
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