Saturday, September 26, 2015

September Snakku Review

I love trying international foods and snacks, and subscription boxes have made it so easy to do so. Snakku is a new service that sends Japanese snacks right to your door in some of the most beautiful packaging I've seen from a subscription!

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

Snakku sends hand-picked, authentic Japanese snacks that you can only find in Japan, along with a few others that are more well-known and widely available. Here are their pricing options:
  • Monthly: $38.95/month
  • Three Months: $115.50 every three months ($38.50 per box)
  • Six Months: $225.00 every six months ($37.25 per box)
Shipping is free to U.S. addresses, and each month you'll be entered to win the $100 Deluxe Box with any subscription level!

I love Snakku's packaging! The box arrived in a USPS Priority Mail box and was beautifully wrapped in the green fabric pictured above. I ended up using it to cover a little table I have at my doorway that I set my keys on. The box itself also has a beautiful, simple design.

Each box has a theme, and the snacks for September were centered around Senbei. Senbei is a traditional Japanese rice cracker that has been a staple of the country for over 400 years. They come in all different shapes, sizes, and flavors and are traditionally eaten with green tea. I love rice crackers so I was excited to try all of the different varieties in this box!

  • Ogurasansou Senbei: The three packages in the bottom row of the above photo have mini senbei inside. There were 10 different shapes and flavors, all randomly mixed into the packages. Each senbei represents a season, region, or feeling, which I think is really interesting. Salty flavors represent the ocean, leaf shaped ones represent autumn, and spicy ones represent summer.
  • Bourbon Roanne: The yellow package in the upper right corner is one of the "popular snacks." It's a crispy light vanilla wafer sandwich and it was delicious! It was two wafer cookies with vanilla cream in the middle.
  • Glico: Another popular snack, Glico is a caramel candy that was first made by this popular brand.
  • Kyoto-style Senbei: These larger senbei are handmade and have a crispy, airy texture. Each one is grilled over charcoal and then brushed lightly with oil and soy sauce. The three flavors were shrimp, Kyoto-style salt, and sugar glazed. I liked the sugar glazed the best because I love salty/sweet combinations.

These three snacks make up the remaining popular snacks included in the box.
  • Shiawasedo Milk Cake: This is a soft cake made with local Hokkaido milk. It was a little dry for my tastes; I was hoping it would be softer and creamier, but it was still pretty good.
  • Green Tea Dorayaki: This is a baked wheat cake filled with matcha red bean paste.
  • Pejoy: Pejoy is similar to Pocky, except the cream filling is on the inside instead of the outside. This box was Green Tea Cream flavored.
Bottom Line: I think Snakku is an excellent box and I love that they send traditional Japanese snacks that aren't readily available near me. I also like that they include so much information about the history behind the snacks!

What do you think of Snakku?

Sunday, September 20, 2015

September Birchbox Review

September is Birchbox's birthday month and this year they celebrated their fifth year of business! They held a Customer Appreciation Day on the 15th and I received a phone call and 500 extra points added to my account. I have always felt that Birchbox had amazing customer service, which is why I've been a subscriber for 35 boxes (and counting)!

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

This was a pretty good box for me. It wasn't my absolute favorite, but overall I liked my sample selection.

  • PARLOUR by Jeff Chastain Moisturizing & Repairing Shampoo ($2.75 for 1 fl oz) - I don't love the scent of the PARLOUR products, but this shampoo really did make my hair feel soft and smooth.
  • PARLOUR by Jeff Chastain Moisturizing & Repairing Conditioner ($1.12 for .41 fl oz) - I also really liked how soft the conditioner made my hair feel. Both products worked really well together so I would probably purchase them despite not loving the scent.
  • ModelCo Ultra Long-Lasting Lipstick ($6.67 for .12 oz, full-sized) - The retail value for this probably isn't exact; these are sold as a trio on the Birchbox site for $20 so I just divided that by three. Anyway, I got the shade "Smitten," which is a nice dark red that's perfect for fall and winter. It felt a little dry on my lips, but it did have good staying power.

Here's a closeup of the ModelCo lipstick. It was smudged when I opened it, but I didn't really care because it wasn't totally broken or ruined.

  • Harvey Prince Sincerely ($1.62 for .05 fl oz) - I received a bigger bottle of this in a different box this month and I just don't love it. There's too much freesia and it's too floral overall.
  • Sumbody Detox Cleanser ($2.21 for .34 fl oz) - This was my favorite sample this month. It's a charcoal-infused cleanser that's perfect for my oily skin. The sample packaging is horrible (you know how you have to smack the bottom of those glass ketchup bottles to get any ketchup out? That's what you have to do with this), but I would absolutely buy a full-sized tube of this.
  • POP Beauty POP Portfolio Eyeshadow Palette - I'm not going to bother trying to get the retail value of this. The full-sized palette costs $26. I won't use any of these shades because they're too cool for my undertones, but it's a good item to post for swap.
Bottom Line: Not counting the POP palette, my box had an approximate retail value of $14.37, so I think it would probably be around $20 if I bothered to calculate the eyeshadow in. I don't really pay too much attention to retail value with Birchbox, though, because I'm usually pretty happy with the samples they send me, and this box was no different!

New Love With Food Coupon: 40% Off!

Love With Food is my all-time favorite snack subscription box, and now you can get your first Tasting Box for 40% off! Gluten-free boxes are 50% off, too!

*Disclaimer: Post contains affiliate links.

Love With Food sends all-natural and organic snacks at the following price points:
  • Monthly Tasting Box: $9.99/month
  • 3 Month Tasting Box: $8.99/month ($26.97 total)
  • 6 Month Tasting Box: $8.50/month ($51.00 total)
  • Annual Tasting Box: $7.99/month ($95.88 total)
The price changes affect the Deluxe and Gluten-Free boxes as well:
  • Monthly Deluxe Box: $19.99/month
  • 3 Month Deluxe Box: $18.99/month ($56.97 total)
  • 6 Month Deluxe Box: $17.99/month ($107.94 total)
  • Annual Deluxe Box: $16.50/month ($198.00 total)
  • Monthly Gluten-Free Box: $24.99/month
  • 3 Month Gluten-Free Box: $22.99/month ($68.97 total)
  • 6 Month Gluten-Free Box: $21.99/month ($131.94 total)
  • Annual Gluten-Free Box: $19.99/month ($239.88 total)
I think the prices are already incredibly affordable, but now you can try your first Tasting Box for 40% off by using this link! Or, get 50% off your first Gluten-Free Box!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Farmacy Beauty Hydrating Coconut Gel Mask Review

Farmacy's new Hydrating Coconut Gel masks are made with hand-picked botanicals for natural and effective hydration. I don't normally use sheet masks, but I was curious to try these because of their natural ingredients!

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

Farmacy masks are powered by Echinacea GreenEnvy, a patented variant of echinacea purpurea, which is a natural antioxidant that helps protect and firm skin by inhibiting enzymes that break down collagen. Plantsman Mark Veeder discovered Echinacea GreenEnvy and teamed up with farming expert Roberty Beyfuss to cultivate the plant. You can learn more about the process of making Echinacea GreenEnvy by watching this video.

The masks come in six different formulations:
  • Brightening (activated by antizyme-rich purple broccoli extract)
  • Deep Moisture (activated by Vitamin C-rich cucumber extract)
  • Soothing (activated by mineral-rich kale extract)
  • Firming (activated by flavinoid-rich celery extract)
  • Oil Control (activated by lycopene-rich carrot extract)
  • Anti-Wrinkle (activated by Vitamin A-rich rhubarb extract)

I received the Anti-Wrinkle mask to try. I feel that it's never too early to start using preventive skincare, so I'm always looking to try new anti-wrinkle products. Let's face it, I'm turning 27 this year so wrinkles may not be that far off for me!

The mask is a sheet mask and it has three layers. Every other sheet mask I've ever tried was just a mask inside of the package, but this one had a blue protective film and a clear film on either side. I liked that it had those protective layers because it made application a lot easier.

I left the mask on for 20 minutes and it stayed in place really well. The main reason why I don't normally use sheet masks is because I feel like they slide around too much and I'm never in the mood to just lie still for 20 minutes while I have one on. I watched TV while I had this one on and it didn't budge! It also felt nice and soothing on my skin. When I removed it I massaged the excess formula into my skin. My skin did feel a little sticky for a short while after due to the excess formula, but it was potent enough that I didn't need to apply a moisturizer after.

If you'd like to try Farmacy Beauty Hydrating Coconut Gel Masks, you can purchase them in stores and online at Sephora and and on the air at QVC. They retail for $24 for a set of three masks.

Bottom Line: I had a great experience with the Farmacy Beauty Hydrating Coconut Gel Mask and I would definitely buy more of them! I'm going to try the Oil Control mask next.

What do you think of Farmacy?

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

September Beauty Box 5 Review

September's Beauty Box 5 is themed "Fall: On Fleek!" and it's one of my favorite boxes yet! I loved the selection of products and I thought it was a very well-rounded box.

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

Beauty Box 5 sends five deluxe samples and full-sized products to your door for $12 per month. Shipping is free to the U.S. and $3 to Canadian addresses. The types of products can be color cosmetics, accessories, hair care, and more!

When I opened the box I was happy to see a bunch of brands that I already know and love, plus two that I hadn't heard of before. I also liked that all of the samples were pretty large this month.

  • Bellapierre Shimmer Powder in Snowflake ($19.99 for .08 oz, full-sized): This is a gorgeous white shimmer that works great as a highlighter for the brow bone and inner corners of your eyes.
  • Elizabeth Mott Tints & Sass Lip and Cheek Stain ($7.22 for .11 oz) - This stain can be used on your lips or cheeks (obviously) and is from South Korea. I haven't tried it yet, so I'm curious to see how pigmented it is.
  • Beautiful Nutrition Lemon Rinse Gentle Clarifying Treatment ($3.75 for 14 mg) - At first I thought this was a cleansing water for your face but it's actually for your hair. It's supposed to be applied root to tip and then rinsed off after you shampoo.
  • Be a Bombshell Cosmetics Eye Crayon ($14.00 for 2.5g, full-sized) - I received the shade "Angel Eyes," which is a soft white shimmer. I tried using it to line my lower waterline but it wasn't pigmented enough, but I'll use it as a highlighter shade elsewhere.
  • Harvey Prince Sincerely ($21.00 for 8.8 mL) - This has notes of cedarwood, freesia, and orange flower. I love Harvey Prince perfumes, but I have to admit that Sincerely is not one of my favorites because of the freesia notes. I've just never cared for that scent.
Bottom Line: I think this month's Beauty Box 5 was fantastic! I liked that there were three full-sized products and two new brands (Elizabeth Mott and Beautiful Nutrition) for me to try. The overall approximate retail value for the box is $65.96!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

August Dapper Box Review

Men's subscription boxes are definitely becoming more and more popular, and while I may not be the target audience for said boxes, I can certainly appreciate anything that helps men become more stylish! Dapper Box is a fantastic subscription that does just that.

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

Dapper Box sends four to five hand-selected menswear accessories worth up to $96 to your door. The pricing options are as follows:
  • Monthly: $29/month
  • 3 Months: $27/month
  • 6 Months: $25/month
  • 12 Months: $23/month
Shipping is free to U.S. addresses and international shipping incurs an extra charge.

I love when guys wear blue, especially with all black suits and shirts (I know, blue and black aren't supposed to go together but I like it!), so I really liked all of the blue in this box. Unfortunately my box didn't come with an info card or any descriptions about the items, so I have no idea the value of the items or the brand names for some of them. This is a 100% silk tie with a beautiful blue color.

I'm going to keep these socks for myself because I love long socks with bright patterns. I can't really see anyone wearing these in a professional setting, but they're fun for lounging around at home.

A Stirling Frozen Tundra Aftershave was also included in the box, and it is definitely something I will not be able to use. I suppose I could use it after I shave my legs, but I'll probably pass this off to my brother instead. It smells really good, though!

I had never realized that pocket circles existed before I received this one. I just thought pocket squares were the only option. This will be passed off to one of the men in my life, too.
Bottom Line: I can't really get a good read on the overall monetary value of this box because I didn't receive any information about the products inside, but I still think it's a great accessories box. I like that all of the items were color coordinated, and I absolutely love the color of the tie!

What do you think of Dapper Box?

Saturday, September 5, 2015

September Scent Trunk Review

I tried my first Scent Trunk box last month (review here) and I really loved it, but I was unable to stay subscribed because I've moved into a new apartment and had to cut back on my subscriptions. So when Scent Trunk asked me if I'd like to review a box I was incredibly thankful and, of course, excited to try another box!

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

Scent Trunk sends three 6 mL perfumes that are hand-selected for you based on your scent profile. You'll fill out a quiz when you first join that will match you up to specific notes and scent types (e.g. woody, floral, etc.). You can change your profile at any time to get different scents, too. The box costs $18 per month and ships to the U.S. and Canada. They have a men's option and a women's option. This review is for the women's box.

I kept my scent profile the same as it was for my last box because I was very happy with the scents I received. Spicy and woody scent notes are my absolute favorites, especially now that colder weather is just around the corner!

Red Cattleya by Olympic Orchids is my favorite perfume from the box. It has citrus and peach top notes, apricot and melon middle notes, and lilac and vanilla base notes. It's a great mix of fruit and warmth and it's perfectly tailored to my tastes.

I also received Coconut Sugar by Note Fragrances, which is a repeat from my last box. The top notes are kiwi and peach, middles are coconut milk and freesia, and the base notes are vanilla and musk. On paper this seems perfect for me, but I think the freesia in it throws me off. It's just a little bit too floral for me.

Last up is Pavane No. 1 by Gwendolyn Marie. I also received this in my last box. It's a beautiful perfume with top notes of orange blossom, middles of fresh grass, and a base of fig and litchi. The top note is kind of floral for me, but the middle and base notes mix really well with my skin's chemistry and I just love how it smells!

I'm a little disappointed that I received two repeat perfumes this month, but I think it might be because I paid for my first box and then received this box as a press review sample? I used the same account, though, so my perfume history should have been available. Either way, had this been my first box I would have been very pleased with the perfume selection!

Bottom Line: I love Scent Trunk and I think they do a great job of selecting perfumes based on the customizable scent profile. I also like that you can change it at any time to get a good variety of scents. Oh and I think their packaging is beautiful, too!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Good Earth Beauty Pumpkin Brulee Whipped Body Cream Review and Giveaway!

I'm a huge fan of pumpkin things, both scented and flavored. I also love vegan, cruelty-free skincare. The Good Earth Beauty Spiced Pumpkin Brulee Whipped Body Cream satisfies all of those things!

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

All of Good Earth Beauty's products are made with natural and/or organic ingredients and without animal testing. Good Earth Beauty's founder, Karen, created the line to make natural beauty and skincare accessible to all. Her daughter, Madi, has sensitive skin and eczema, and when they realized how much better natural products were for her skin, Karen was inspired to create her own company.

I absolutely love the Spiced Pumpkin Brulee Whipped Body Cream! Not only does it smell divine, but it's incredibly effective. I use it after my nightly showers to moisturize all over, but also because I'm obsessed with the way it smells. It's a little bit more "spiced" than "pumpkin" in my opinion, but I still think it smells great and just like fall.

The texture is light and airy, hence the "whipped" in the name, and the cream absorbs quickly into the skin. The scent lingers just enough but isn't overpowering. Even better, the cream is free from parabens, pesticides, petroleum, propylene glycol, phthalates, sulfates, and artificial colors. It's also handmade in the U.S.!

Here's a full list of the ingredients:
Purified Water, Organic Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe), Sunflower Oil, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Shea Butter, Jojoba Oil, Tamanu Oil, Organic Borage Oil, Flax Seed Oil, Organic, Evening Primrose Oil, Emulsifying Wax, Rose Hip Oil, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Wildcrafted Arnica Montana, Chamomile, Grapeseed Oil, Macadamia Nut Oil, Radish Root Ferment (Natural Preservative), proprietary blend of natural fragrance oils
Bottom Line: Good Earth Beauty has a fantastic line of skincare and beauty products for the conscious consumer. I highly recommend the Spiced Pumpkin Brulee Whipped Body Cream to anyone who's ready for fall and the dry skin the cooler weather brings. It's effective and also smells amazing!

If you'd like to win a jar of the Spiced Pumpkin Brulee Whipped Body Cream, use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. The sweepstakes is open to U.S. residents aged 18+. Please see the Rafflecopter form for full terms and conditions.

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