Bellabox Feburary 2017 – Unboxing, Review and The Straw That Broke The Camel’s Back – Unsubscribing

Bellabox. We had a fun time together. We’ve been on the rocks for a while. This box was…it was the last straw. I can’t do this anymore. I’m sorry.


I was greeted by pink powder everywhere, even before I’d taken off the tissue paper. They’d spoiler-ed the NYX blush, which I’d been slightly interested in. Not interested enough to ask for a replacement. Here’s the overall damage:


I’m sure you can guess some of my feelings here.

Eye Majic swipe on eyeshadow? I thought we gave up on this gimmick at least ten years ago. I had an old Chi Chi version of these and they didn’t work. They were a muddy mess that I got in a sale bin. The NYX blush seems like a pretty colour? I can’t really tell. It’s in the bin. I’ve received plenty of samples of the Klorane shampoo and the little tubes of Neutrogena sunscreen (it’s a nice idea, but it breaks me out).  There’s some tea, I guess. At least it’s Twinings and not some godforsaken detox weightloss tea brand. There are Avon samples, which I’ve complained about before. I salvaged the Bath and Body Works spray, because my sister likes to have something like that in her bag for school, and these are a good size. I have a Twisted Peppermint one – I’m not into Japanese Cherry Blossom, but it’s not a bad scent.

Guys, this is a mess. If I hadn’t been long disengaged with Bellabox, I’d have contacted them to try and get the blush replaced at the very least. The point where I realised I needed to unsubscribe was the point where I realised that I just didn’t care enough. I didn’t want to get involved.

I haven’t got this month’s Lust Have It bag, so I’m yet to see how that relationship will pan out. Honestly, I’m okay with ending it. Subscriptions are fun, but so is spending that money on things I’m interested in.

Bellabox January 2017 – Unboxing and Review

I feel like I start all of these reviews with disappointment. Sad trombone noises, womp womp womp, you know the drill. I thought I’d give Lust Have It the axe, especially if Bellabox had themselves together this month, but I’m thoroughly underwhelmed. Let’s discuss.


Maybe I was being too harsh in my opening statement. There’s dollops of potential here, and my sighs don’t necessarily indicate that. Sadly, potential doesn’t always equate to a good box.


BB Summer Shimmer Trio (I got the Unicorn trio, RRP $9.95) – I love highlighters, especially pastel tones, so this is a nice item in theory. I did get the shade I would prefer as opposed to the golden trio, not that the name is mentioned anywhere on the actual packaging.  Where the theory falls down is that in Bellabox’s foray into cosmetic manufacturing, they’ve entirely prioritised hitting a trend over creating a usable, quality product. They have that distinct kiddy makeup texture, really greasy with lots of glitter, not to mention the accompanying toy makeup smell. The lightest shade, a pearl, is all glitter and has no base in pigment (the other two are slightly better). They blend out to indistinct glitter and disrupt base makeup so really only work on bare skin. I wish this had been a powder formula, where even the worst are easier to repurpose, or a little more thought had been given to the actual texture and workability of the product.

Cetaphil Suntivity SPF50+ Liposomal Lotion (100mL retails for $19.05 and this is 10mL so around $1.90) – I love getting sunscreen in boxes. I like how this is packaged – it’s got a proper lid for multiple uses – and I appreciate that it’s SPF50. The only dampener on it is that I’ve actually received this sunscreen in a Bellabox before, and that one was a full size. I imagine this is a convenient size for short term travel – I might take it away with me at the end of the month – but I have a lot of sunscreen, because I live in Australia.

Skinny Tan Gradual Tanner (Full size 150mL; RRP $29.95) – This is a high value item, but I’m always automatically irritated by things that use “skinny” in their marketing. Like…this is a gradual tanner. All that’s “skinny” about it is the inclusion of guarana, so you’ve got a bit of caffeine I guess, and that a tan does help to smooth over the appearance of cellulite. As someone with plenty of cellulite, I don’t care, and I’m not won over by marketing that targets a fear of being overweight to make money (see: skinny teas) or the implications of my my body being awful and wrong. I have, however, been looking for a gradual tanner to help even out all the pigmentation on my legs, and this one smells like coconut. Hopefully it won’t work out a streaky mess on me the way the Jergens did.

Klorane Shampoo with Camomile (I am no longer placing values on these but they are 25mL and the full size is 200mL for $13.95) – You lose value with omnipresence. The more of these I acquire, the less likely I am to use them. A shampoo without a conditioner is a weird thing to send, they’re too small for travel, and they’re basically just things that overrun my drawers.

EyePro Eye Makeup Pad (a ten pack is $14.95; this is one set so around $1.50) – I’m vaguely interested in the idea of a product that gets me a straight wing without me having to hold something to my face, but also protects from fallout. Would I pay for it? Absolutely not.

Maybe I was too harsh. I feel like it was better than I made out initially. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll just cancel them both? One more month? Why am I doing this to myself?

Bellabox November/December 2016 – Unboxing and Review (The Good, the Bad and the Bellabox)

Being away, I missed my chance to post about my November subscription boxes. Because life is stressful, I hadn’t had a chance to catch up on posts about them, so instead I’ve decided to condense each box into its own post. I haven’t received my December Lust Have It, but Bellabox is here, so it’s time for post that really highlights the highs and lows of this particular subscription service.



It looks like a pretty sparsely packed box, but the contents are actually pretty objectively good. I ended up having small problems with certain things, but in general I can really appreciate this. I don’t have the products on hand, so I’m not going to calculate value.


Innisfree Super Volcanic Clay Mask – I have actually had the chance to use this twice now, and I genuinely really enjoy it. I love that it’s a clay mask that doesn’t go all out on the exfoliation, because it means it’s not too intense for my skin, and I don’t find it too cooling or drying. I do avoid the more sensitive areas of my face, and find this works best on my nose, where my pores are most visible. It leaves the area feeling matte for an extended period.

Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum – I find this a little stickier than I generally like for a serum, especially compared to something like the Baimeni Eye and Face Hyaluronic Serum. I have actually been using some more actives in my routine to really help with the smoothing that has been the one niggling issue – reintroducing BHA exfoliation and also trying for AHAs that don’t include Glycolic Acid, which seems to irritate my skin – so serum products really do become those extra steps and I really do have to love them to want to integrate them.

Innisfree Orchid Enriched Cream – I like the consistency of this cream, somewhere between light and rich, but it’s pretty heavily scented and I’m wary of using it without my skin being in prime condition. I think I’ll just leave it alone, honestly. Someone else will probably appreciate it.

Luma Cosmetics Lipgloss Wand (RRP $16.95)I wouldn’t have been as irritated by this if it hadn’t dangled the possibility of a sheer lipstick right in my face on the card. Come on guys. I don’t even like sheer lipsticks, but I’d take them in a heartbeat over a gloss. At least mine wasn’t a tube – eugh. I see that other people got other Luma products, and I would have loved to try something else from the range, but I have indicated that I’m a lip product fanatic, so…fine (my kingdom to try a highlighter or one of their eye products). Though the packaging is nice, this has zero pigment on the lips, and while I know some people are into that, it’s definitely not for me.

Tilley Australia Exfolating Soap Bar (RRP $7.95) – Another product where I wish I would have received the other option, because while I dig exfoliation,  I famously loathe coffee. I’m a poor excuse for a Sydney-sider. I do appreciate recieving soaps, because it means I don’t have to buy them, and I will put this in the shower at some point, but on initial smell this bar of soap made me feel so ill that I genuinely did throw up. Granted, I had just got off of a 10.5 hour flight where my intestines had decided to rebel and the entire thing had been spent throwing up, so it wouldn’t have taken much. I haven’t gone back and smelt it since then and I’m sure it’s absolutely fine, but I feel a little scarred.

I’d say my ranking for this box would be a 3.5/5 – some strong items, a few that are harder to come across in Australia (Innisfree is a fun inclusion that I’m lucky to have access to as someone who spends a great deal of time adjacent to some great k-beauty stockists, but not all subscribers will be in that position), a good mix of samples and full size. Just a shame that the two variable items weren’t the ones I would have picked. I guess that’s the beauty box risk!


From a totally decent box to a box full of promise but ultimately a let down. Bellabox, you’re a cruel mistress.


Filled to the brim! Full sizes!! Good sample sizes! A good mix of face and body! If you’ve read any of my reviews on boxes before, though, you might be able to spot a few key warning signs.


Gilded Cage Charisma Lip Gloss in 81 (RRP $28 for 13mL so although this is full sized, you can get absolutely fucked Gilded Cage. $28 for a lip gloss tube? To be fair, this is listed as on sale for $21 on their website, the only stockist – STILL EXPENSIVE) – I got a Gilded Cage lipstick in a Marie Claire Parcel, and I whinged about it then. Any natural forgiveness I had towards the lipstick I do NOT harbour for a lipgloss tube. Gilded Cage are a confusing online brand with hardly any presence who charge solidly mid range prices – lipsticks at a higher price than Mac or Kat Von D (although it looks like they’re currently marked down from $40AUD to $30AUD, which is STILL ridiculous). They have three kinds of products in weirdly cheap packaging and I do not understand their branding whatsoever. Subscribers did have the opportunity to choose which product they would receive, but naturally I was in America and the choice had expired by the time I woke up in the morning. It was between their cream eyeshadows and their lipgloss tubes and as soon as I saw that, I knew a lipgloss tube was coming my way. The lipgloss itself has the tiniest hint of pigment that would only show when layered and a light – pleasant – berry scent. I’m just irritated at this whole thing, and I’m irritated at the idea of paying $28 for something that feels exactly the same as 90% of the lipglosses I could get at priceline, including the goddamn one they sent me for November. This is just bitterness coming through. I’ll dial it down.

Revlon Professional Uniq One Hair Treatment (RRP $29.95 for 150mL) – I don’t really use spray in treatments like this, particularly when they smell so strongly like salon – it evokes bad memories of my first job as a general workhorse at a salon as a twelve year old – so I guess this will get offered to my sister.

Sunsense Daily Face SPF50+ Invisible Tint Finish (Full size retails for $26.95 for 200mL; this is 10g – sunscreen and water don’t weigh the same, but let’s call it $1.30 value) – I love getting sunscreen, but I have received this in full size before and sadly know that it breaks me out. Otherwise this would be a great, usable item in the box for me! I’d still be kind of annoyed at the lack of resealable bottle – come on, you don’t use this much on your face in one go, and then it’s just messy – but a tinted 50+ sunscreen is a great summer inclusion.

Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil-Control Foam Wash (Full  size is a weird 236mL for $15.99, and this is 50mL so my bad maths works it out as about $3.40) – While I’m wary of foam washes in general, because my skin dries out really easily from anything too stripping, I’m always keen to try something new as a second step cleanser? It’s also a great size, so if it doesn’t mess my skin up, it would be great for travel.

Pure Paw Paw Ointment in Passionfruit (RRP $4.95 for 25g) – At least I guess I’ll use this? It smells really lovely – I like the scent of passionfruit, though not really the fruit itself. I’ve never really been a fan of the texture of paw paw ointment, but I can always use a new addition to the lip balm bed time line up.

Palmer’s Coconut Oil Formula Body Lotion (Bonus Item – sachet) – I just got a little bottle of this in my Marie Claire Parcel, so I guess I’ll try the sachet and see if I like the product enough to take the bottle away on a cruise with me as my sole body moisturiser?

Body Boss Training Booklet (Bonus item) – Go fuck yourself. Here’s an extract from the first page of this bullshit booklet: “No time to work out? Too broke? Too cold outside? Sorry babe, we don’t want your lame excuses. Give us 100% and we’ll give you an awesome body.” Literally get bent. Negative value. I’m back to Gilded Cage levels of seething. More. It’s insubstantial and insulting and I shouldn’t have to receive this shit if I don’t actively want it. Also their whole trial program is just basic circuit stuff peppered with cutesy name calling. I’m not really understanding the innovation here.

Avon Life for Her EDP sample (Bonus item) – I think I’ve gone off about Avon enough for everyone to be aware of my feelings, but let’s just say that they aren’t super positive and also this perfume smells incredibly generic and I don’t have the energy for it.

I’d generously give this box a 1.5/5. I’ll use the paw paw ointment eventually and I like that it’s passionfruit scented instead of smelling like petrol, and I might end up liking the face wash – who knows? If I didn’t know that the sunscreen was a disaster on my skin, that might be nice too. Everything else was not great.

Ups and downs. It’s how subscription boxes work.

I’m definitely thinking about cutting back one box, either Lust Have It or Bellabox – having already nixed Fortune Cookie Soap – but the choice is pretty tough. While Lust Have It have more of a makeup emphasis and can occasionally product bigger hits (Paula’s Choice BHA! Great blush!), they also tend to send out things that haven’t been in circulation for forever, which makes me pretty uncomfortable. On the flipside, Bellabox have professionalism on their side, and get bigger names involved with better consistency, but they’re so hit and miss. They’re both on probation. I’m figuring it out.


October Bellabox 2016: Unboxing and Review

Receiving a subscription box on the 4th of the next month is not ideal. I’m not sure whether everyone got it late or whether I was one of the few, because by the time it got to me, all of the contents had been well and truly spoiled on the Bellabox instagram.

It was a case of being spoiled by the spoilers, I suspect. We knew we were all receiving a lip product and there were three possibilities: the Laqa & Co chubby pencil, which I’ve received in a box before; the UB Cosmetics tint stick or a Shanghai Suzy lipstick (!!!). Did I allow myself to hope for the Shanghai Suzy offering? Perhaps.

Let’s unpack.


Universal Beauty Cosmetics Tint Stick (RRP $19.99) – So of course, I got the tint stick. This is probably a more “universally” appealing product. I enjoy Shanghai Suzy lipsticks because of the intensity of pigment, whereas this one is all about delivering a pop of colour through that marker application that goes on thin and without being too much. It’s nice, but it’s not me at all. I also hate the marker style lip tints, which are notoriously fast in drying out and messy on application, but I do commend this for the flexibility of the tip and for actually transferring colour to the lip without being a thick, glossy product. I don’t know how often I would use this, but I did swatch it on my otherwise bare face:


Pretty, but for my longwear colour, I prefer a little bit more of a high impact than this subtle stuff. I can definitely see the appeal.

Skin Republic Brightening Vitamin C Mask (RRP $7.99 – 1 mask) – I’m not hugely into sheet masks and I am perpetually wary of products boasting Vitamin C as their main claim, because I tend to be pretty easily reactive. I have had success with low concentrations, and I’m certain that  this falls into that category, but I also very rarely can be bothered with sheet masks apart from after hospitalisations or plane rides.

Neon & Co Leave In Ampoule Shot (RRP $10.00; full size)- I’ve never used an ampoule for hair, so I’m keen to try this. It smells beautiful, and I still have the tiny bottle of hair oil from this brand I got in an earlier box that at the time, I wasn’t into, but have since become a bit of a fan of.

Cetaphil Daily Advance Ultra Hydrating Lotion (Full size RRP is $9.95; this is 10mL so worth a little more than $1) – I appreciate that this lotion is fragrance free (thanks for acknowledging my gross sensitive skin) but it’s so boring that I might change my skin type on my profile so I stop endlessly receiving cetaphil and physiogel over and over. Just for some variation (and to see if it actually changes anything). It says non-greasy, but it’s that weird light texture that feels oddly slick on the skin like the Avene, that I hate.

Batiste Dry Shampoo (50mL RRP $4.95) – I received my least favourite Batiste scent – Cherry – but this is my favourite dry shampoo because I am bad at hair it’s great to keep it presentable in between washes. It’s the best I’ve found for actually managing oil (vs. ones like the Klorane), regardless of white cast, which I find easy to work through. It’s a great size for travel.

Dermal Therapy Heel Balm – This is on the card as a bonus, but it’s nearly a 30g sample tube and I’m always here for a good size foot cream sample because my feet are always gross. I’m going to Hawaii later in the month, so I need to get them looking good.

The card also mentions the Virgin Wine Club discount card, which I rolled my eyes at several times. I’m happy with cheap moscato that tastes like juice, thank you.

Not a bad box, despite my initial disappointment over the lack of Shanghai Suzy lipstick. Weirdly, I’m most happy with the hair product and the foot cream, which were not the big draw cards of the box. The lip tint might come in handy for low maintenance days like today,  and I’ll probably end up taking the dry shampoo on overnighters. Not so keen on the Cetaphil or the Vitamin C mask, but no box hits all the targets.

I will say, the sneak peaks I’ve seen for the next box – that I saw before this one arrived – actually seem pretty good. It looks like a few Innisfree products, which I’m keen to have a play with, and then one from a selection of Luma cosmetics products. Knowing my luck, it might be a lip gloss, but it’s always nice to have a nice broad spoiler category like that. I’d give this box a solid 3.75/5. Yeah, we’re rating in quarters now. It’s happening.

September Bellabox 2016: Unboxing/Review

Today’s warm up for doing my assignments was going to be a wrap up review post on my most recent lipstick purchases (Mac, Urban Decay, Pretty Zombie Cosmetics), but both of my monthly subscription boxes arrived yesterday so in order for me to hashtag stay relevant, you’re stuck with this trash.

And when I say “stuck with this trash”, I’m talking trash. Bellabox, guys, what is going on? It’s more of a letdown after my disappointment with the usually phenomenal Marie Claire parcel, and I’ll give you a bit of a spoiler in saying that this month’s Lust Have It was…not stellar. September’s been a bad month for my life and also for subscription boxes, it seems.

I usually try to focus on the positive (NOTE: whether you interpret this as sarcasm or not depends on what extent of my writing you have read), but with the way September has metaphorically taken to repeatedly slapping me in the face, there may be some traces of what the kids are calling “saltiness”.


Hey, Bellabox! Don’t get me all excited with a theme like “Kiss Me” if you’re going to include one measly lip product. That’s unfair to people like me who like their lip products and kissing abundant. More kissing, more lipstick. It’s practically my life motto.

“Jelly Lipstick” (“RRP $14.95”) – I cannot refer to any of that without direct quotations, but feel free to also imagine me doing over-emphatic air quotes. Where is this lipstick from? What is the brand? If it’s a no-brand dollar store lip balm (it is), that’s fine, but then don’t try to tell me it’s $14.95. Lipstick Queen can charge my mother $30 for that Frog Prince lipstick but I’ll be damned if I’m paying more than $2 for something that does nothing to my lips and has no value other than, I guess, looking slightly cool and transparent. It is referred to as “the internet’s latest sensation”, although I think it’s missing a tiny flower inside to actually be what they think it is. Also, the gaudy orange tube – and I have no problem with gaudy tubes, believe me, I bought one of the Mac Trolls lipsticks – is emblazoned with the phrase “Sexy Love”. Aside from being a weird Ne-Yo song from 2006, a fact that I embarrassingly did not have to google,  it’s probably not the phrase I want across my lipsticks. Sorry, “lipsticks”. This may be the most I have ever used quotation marks in a review.

Natural Instinct Eye Creme (25mL RRP $19.95) – This is an eye cream. It is fine, I’m sure. Will I one day regret not using eye cream in my twenties, despite working in a skin care retailer? Possibly. But right now, it’s an extra step I am entirely too lazy for despite spending nearly an hour on the rest of my routine. I don’t know. My eyes are fine. I won’t ding them for this, because it is a fine product, and my disillusion with eye creams stems from the disproportionate amount of time I have spent over the last seven years talking about eye creams.

Palmolive Oil Infusions Body Moisturiser (Free extra, 12mL) – Mine is “Citrus with Jojoba oil”. We have the handwash from this range in our bathroom and it’s fine, so I’m sure this – ahem – sachet will be fine. My main issue with this is nitpicky, but if you’re reading this review, you’re prepared for that. Palmolive want us to “join the conversation”, and hashtag #moisturisermoment and something else as well (I do not remember because I immediately threw the cardboard bit out in disgust). Palmolive. You make moisturiser. Are you offering me a prize? You don’t mention a prize. Unless you’re going to give me a prize, I have no motivation to tag a moisturiser company. Do you really want to facilitate a conversation about…moisturiser?

Cocofixation 100% Coconut Facial Wipes (a 25 pack is $12; this is a 5 pack so $2.40) – At the very least, I use face wipes. Coconut is a nice ingredient. Good things. Smiles. Deep breathing.

Avon Skin Goodness CC Cream SPF30+ (25g is $16.99, this is 5g so about $3.40) – I have said all I can say about not really caring for Avon products generally, but I am always happy to be wrong. I doubt this product will do that. There does not appear to be a colour range, and this is on the medium-tan end of the spectrum, but it does of course sheer out to boring nothing. Blahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I like the size?

Sebamed Skincare Derma-Soft Wash Emulsion (200mL is $19.95; this is 20mL so it is under $2) – This is fine and I will use it when I am next in hospital or away for the weekend or crashing at someone’s house. I have only used sebamed  body products, and they were good for my patches of dermatitis. I am sure this will be fine?

And of course, there is a HelloFresh “voucher”, to which I loudly exclaimed “Go fuck yourself”, and threw in the bin.

Honestly, the box is objectively not the most terrible thing in the world, but there are items that make me so irrationally angry that it outweighs everything. That jelly lipstick fills me with seething rage. I will not swatch it for you, because it just looks like a lip balm.

Angry face/5. -300/5. I’m just not in the mood to give a rational rating.

August Bellabox 2016: Unboxing/Review

I am in hospital! It is shit, but at least finally my whopping eight day migraine has settled to the point where I can sort of compose sentences and look at lights and slowly type messages. My Bellabox came in the mail and my sister brought it in, so let’s have an extremely low quality look through this month’s goodies.


Being in hospital has the pleasant side effect of making ordinarily boring things much more desirable, so there’s a few things here that made me happier than they usually would.


Em Cosmetics The Great Cover Up Concealer (Full size 9mL $17.00USD; we got a choice of shades if we responded to an email so I believe I got the light neutral option) – Makeup is always my favourite thing to receive, and I’m always on the hunt for good concealers. Em Cosmetics is a bizarre brand to me in the same way I am fascinated by Michelle Pham and her whole deal. On first impression, I actually really like this concealer on first play – haven’t tried it on my face, obviously, due to being in hospital and all – it’s creamy and blends nicely but doesn’t seem to overly sink into the lines on my hand. Will  definitely give this a go. You also get $10 off when you buy Em cosmetics in the Bellabox store, which is nice.

Avene Tolerance Extreme Cream and Cleansing Lotion (full sizes are 50mL for $58.95, whoa nelly – these are worth about $6? And they aren’t resealable?) – these two little guys are undeniably  very boring, but Avene is lovely for sensitive skin and my skin turns to crap the moment I get sick. I was using a little Origins travel size cleanser that’s been drying my skin, so these are welcome.

Nivea Creme Fairytales Edition (Full size 150mL RRP $7.88) – I remember little tins of this stuff appearing as freebies throughout my life as a young’un. I don’t think I’ve ever bought it. It’s a very boring, traditional, simple, rich cream, and I am so grateful for it right now because my arms are so dry that they’re flaking all over the place.

Lush No Drought Dry Shampoo (RRP $13.95) – while I’m glad to see Lush sticking their beaks into the subscription box game, I’m kind of disappointed that this was the outcome for me knowing the products other people got. One of my absolute favourite Youtubers got a lime green eyeliner so dry shampoo lacks pizazz for me, but I’m sure most people would feel the opposite way. I’ve tried this product before – I find the method of dispensing to be a pain in the ass and far too concentrated in one area, or if you dispense into your hands first it’s just a downright mess. It’s not the most effective dry shampoo or the most volumising, but it does smell nice, so it’s okay for a pick me up when you don’t need anything heavy duty.

Alpha Keri Bust Lift and Firm Cream and Heat Activated Body Slimming and Firming Serum (AKA the free bonus bullshit item) – I’m not as angry at this as I was at the ridiculous tea from a couple of months back, especially because this isn’t assigned any value, but I think we can all agree that this stuff is bullshit, right? Get fucked, Alpha Keri, and take your $10 voucher with you. I’m sure you’ve got other good products, but I have trouble abiding by this level of pseudo-science prey-on-internalised-misogyny rubbish.

Overall, I’d give this box a 2.5/5. Solidly functional, occasional spots of interest, and one kind of bullshit bonus item that I’ve come to expect.




July Bellabox 2016 – Unboxing/Review

Now, these pictures are terrible. These are some of the worst photos that have ever graced my blog. My plan was to retake them in the morning before posting this, but one of the items in the box has already been ripped from me and taken to the depths of my sister’s room, never to be returned. This box answered her prayers. It’s not my favourite box, but she’s over the moon about it. Let’s investigate the contents!

Of course, not including the bits of rubbish that I’m ignoring the HelloFresh “voucher” because as I’ve explained before, they make me angry and Bellabox have given up on even including them on the card. Beyond that, there’s also a $30USD voucher for Sweet & Spark, which is a vintage costume jewellery website. That’s fine, but it’s not a cheap, and I couldn’t really give a toss about costume jewellery. If you’re into that stuff, though, I’m sure you’ll find something nice (and the code is BELLABOX16).

Then there is the actual, usable stuff.


And the card, with all the info (and the theme, which is apparently “Back to basics” – although how a purple eyeshadow fits that, I’m not sure).


Klorane Shampoo and Conditioner with Quinine and B Vitamins (Both retail in full size for $13.95, the shampoo is in a little bottle with two uses but the conditioner is a foil sachet; I gave the shampoo about $1.30 value in my Marie Claire but honestly I’ve had so many of these recently I’m going to cap the combined value at $1, because when you’ve received something for free four times in three months, it starts to lose its perceived value) – I’ve got all these samples building up and I never use them because I’m busy using stuff for my very very coloured hair, or stuff that comes in bottles with more than two uses. My time is worth more than that. I’m sure this stuff is fine? I’ll use it eventually I guess.

Physiogel Daily Moisture Therapy Intensive Cream (100mL full size, RRP for $13.99) – This stuff, which I have used before, is great for easily irritated skin. My sister loves it, and has stolen all of my past tubes of it, and since it stopped being available at Priceline (there’s no Amcal locally) she has been stealing all of my other moisturises. I figured that since this was probably going to end up stolen anyway, I may as well pass it straight over to her, and no sooner was the offer extended she had snatched it up and taken it away. It’s nice to get a full size, and of a product that is basic, but good.

Gosh Mono Eyeshadow (Mine is in Aubergine, RRP is $24.95) – As of right now, Gosh Cosmetics aren’t available in Australia, so I appreciate that this is a little preview of sorts while they secure a stockist. The RRP seems a little high – I’ve tried Gosh while in the UK, and it’s very much a drugstore brand, so singles for $25? If the quality is up there with the Prestige Cosmetics singles, maybe. The colour I got is, obviously, an eggplant purple with a satiny shimmer. It could have swatched smoother, and I wish the purple was a little richer and less brown, but I can see it being quite nice. I can definitely report back on blendability and versatility. Here’s a swatch:


It does actually go on the lids quite nicely, albeit a little muddy when you work with it.

Revo Lip Balms (Mine is Melon Mint, these retail for $4.99) – I like the smell of this, but I’ve had bad experiences with EOS balms and their ilk. This will probably get given to my mum or sister – I prefer more emollient balms, when I do use lip balms – I want things that can really get in there and hydrate overnight or at the beginning of my morning so that when I remove excess product, my lips are totally dry but kept soft. Not my thing.

Baimeni Hydrating Eye and Face Serum with Hyaluronic Acid (Full size is 30mL for $25.00; this lil baby is 3mL so $2.50) – Now this is my kind of thing. Looking at the ingredients list for this is actually really exciting for me – hyaluronic acid is the next ingredient after purified water, and I’ve been wanting to try something rich in HA but not heavy in too much else (though I’m not mad at the inclusions of glycerin, aloe vera, lactic acid, that sort of thing – the ingredients list is pretty nice), and my skin is pretty dry in this miserable weather. I tried it out amongst my nighttime routine, and it’s quite lovely – lightweight, but hydrating. 3mL should give me quite a few uses, especially as the packaging is not a shitty foil sachet.

Palmers Ultra Gentle Facial Cleansing Oil (Listed as a bonus item so ostensibly no value, but I’m pretty happy with the inclusion despite booo foil sachet; full size is 192mL for $14.99) – Sure, it’s a tiny boring sachet, but Palmers products smell nice and I like cleansing oils. This one is nice enough, though a little thicker and, um, oilier than than my favourite cleansing oil options, but it smells nice and it does the job. I can’t use it directly in the eye area, but that’s me with most options. Thankfully this foil sachet is more than one use.


So overall value wise, this rounds out at about $47.50 (not including the voucher-esque content, or the palmers sample), but the content was okay. That’s really what it comes down to. I’m really happy to try out the Baimeni serum, something I wouldn’t have otherwise found, and the Gosh shadow and Physiogel cream are both nice inclusions (though the latter doesn’t end up in my hands). The rest is kind of give or take. It’s, maybe, a 2.5/5 box? I’ve had worse, definitely.

Oh Bellabox. Our relationship is hanging on by a thread. I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I’m hanging in there.

June Bellabox 2016 – an irritated unboxing/review

Is it possible? Is this Bellabox worse than that time the only thing  I was excited about was a tiny spray can of deodorant? Usually I try to keep you on your toes as to whether my thoughts on the box of the month are negative or positive, but as soon as I saw the first preview for this box, I knew this was going to be bad.

Like, this photo isn’t even in focus. I’m the worst and my maths will be every bit as bad as it was in my Marie Claire unboxing. Delete my blog.

Can you not just predict exactly what I’m going to say?

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleansing Wipes (25 wipes for $7.50; full size) – I mean, they’re basic makeup removal wipes. I haven’t had good experiences with the brand. They’ll be fine for removing swatches, if necessary. That’s nearly as positive as this review is going to get.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel (50g costs $24.99; this is a 5g tube so it’s worth about $2.50) – I was into this sample! That is, when I received it in my first ever Bellabox. I know I’m bound to get repeats across different boxes, but the exact same product in the same box? Come on, guys. If you’re curious as to my opinion, I ended up hating it – it felt sticky, and way too light, and like it didn’t actually give me any hydration. This will go into The Box.

Dermal Therapy Lip Balm (10g for $4.95; full size) – This is the item I’m the most pleased with, and it’s a standard petroleum based lip balm (my favourites tend to be lanolin based). It doesn’t feel too sticky, and it has a very lightly minty smell, so I’ll probably use it overnight.It doesn’t make me angry.

Colgate Optic White High Impact White Toothpaste (This is advertised as a bonus item not counting to value but the full size is 85g for $9.99 so this 21g tube adds about $2.50) – Double standards here, because I was happy with this when I got it in my Marie Claire Parcel. That’s because 1) I was in hospital and it was incredibly helpful and 2) the rest of the box was awesome. This tube has the problem of being the second I’ve received, so I know that I’m not a fan of the taste, and I don’t really have any use for it. Sad trombones.

Mizon Soothing Mask (single masks are $4.00) – It’s a sheet mask. I’m not really a sheet mask person. I’m also not a lavender person, which this contains, so I’m wary. But it’s usable, and I haven’t received it before.

Your Tea Skin Magic Tea (60 pack is $35; this is a 9 pack worth by my shitty calculations about $5.25) – This was the spoiler I saw that set the whole box as a failure for me. I’m adamantly against “slimming” teas and the promotion thereof to susceptible audiences  and detox teas are also definitely not my jam (WHAT TOXINS? THAT’S WHAT YOUR ORGANS ARE DOING), so at least they picked a “complexion” tea. I don’t have a problem with concepts of chinese medicine and the application thereof in teas, but I do have a problem with supporting companies who sell weightloss and “liver cleanse” teas and eugh. Especially not if they’re advertised as the big ticket item of the box. I’d accept it, maybe, as a “bonus” item – in place of the toothpaste, perhaps – but…come on. Nope.

Gelogic Gel Nail Polish in Champagne (18mL $9.95; full size) – Not only do I not wear nail polish, but I received the ugliest beige colour in the world.

And then there’s that bullshit “get $100 off when you spend $100 on a box of wine which is actually only worth $100 in the first place so there’s no discount”, which…stop it, Bellabox.

This is the closest I’ve come to unsubscribing. I’m extremely unimpressed with the tea. One of the items is a repeat from this box, and one I’ve got in another box. Two items I flat out won’t use (nail polish and tea), leaving me with…face wipes in a brand that has irritated my skin in the past, a sheet mask with an ingredient that tends to irritate me, and a lip balm I’ll use. Okay, it’s not quite as bad as that goddawful box from all those months ago, but it’s not good. The value is not atrocious, at about $36.65, but the perceived value is…not that.

0.5/5. I suppose.

Get it together, Bellabox. I think it’s autorolled over to next month, so I’d hope they pick themselves up.

Bellabox May 2016 – Unboxing/Review

I have written before about my love/hate relationship with Bellabox. As it stands, my archives are accessible here, and I’ve been receiving it since around November 2015. The past two months have left me cautiously optimistic – last month, the addition of a great mascara and a generous size of a lovely face mask had me with two thumbs up.

Let’s examine the goods, and see if that good streak continues.

Look at my tiny hands! I may be a large lady, but according to my grandmother I have the hands of a butcher.

Very rarely do I start to develop my opinion on a box based on the theme, but Eco Conscious is…not my bag. I am all for looking after our planet, and do what I can personally, but I am not hugely into the commodification of “green”ness and I have a lot of issues with marketing within the field. I deal with it a lot in my day to day life, so I’m not so keen on dealing with it here (the lack of restrictions on what can be called “natural”, the charging more for products with green marketing, etc).

On to the contents!


Jurlique Moisturising Hand Santiser (this is 50mL; 175mL retails for $20) – This is a nice enough hand sanitiser that works the same as every other nice hand sanitiser and smells strongly of lavender. It’s not drying, but that’s that. It’s a hand sanitiser and I’ll use it before I use the hand sanitiser from the most recent Fortune Cookie Soap Box.

Cocoswish Oil Pulling (Single pack; 12pack retails for $44) – I’ll try almost anything, but I’ll admit: I’m kind of too scared to try this. I’ll get around to it, but the whole idea of oil pulling kind of weirds me out. Swishing lemon flavoured gunk around my mouth for 5-15 minutes? Yikes.

Aroma Magic Almond Moisturising Lotion (10mL; 100mL retails for $14) – This is “magic” lotion? It’s lotion, basically. It just feels like lotion and smells like generic herbal stuff (vaguely lavendery). It doesn’t feel particularly ultra-moisturising, and thankfully has no actual lavender oil in it, because I am notoriously sensitive to lavender on my chest. It’s lotion. It’s hard to get excited about lotion.

Karen Murrell Lipstick ($30) – Not a fan of Karen Murrell’s “nothing nasty touches my lips” motto, but I’m always happy to see a lipstick in a box. I got the colour 06, Carnation Mist, which is a very boring rosy pink with a STRONG cinnamon smell – if your lips are sensitive at all, despite the no nasty stuff idea, I would definitely stay clear. It took a couple of swipes for opacity, but it has a nice enough satin-matte finish. I’ll probably pass this on to someone who’ll get more use from it.

Rubbish lighting, boring lipstick, but probably something the average consumer would get a lot of wear from.

Derma E Purifying 2-in-1 Charcoal Mask (14g; 48g retail for $34.95) – I do love a good mask, so I’m happy with this inclusion – I haven’t used a charcoal mask on my face before, and I know they’re all the rage at the moment. I am quite sensitive, so I’ll definitely be patch testing, but it seems like it could be good for my congested areas. Who knows? There is also a bonus voucher included for $5 off a Derma E  purchase at Priceline in May/June, so if you end up curious about the range, you can go get a discount. I’m unlikely to use it, but I appreciate the gesture.

Avon Nutra Effects Radiance Day Cream SPF15 and Renewing Night Cream (shitty foil sachets; 50mL each for $15) – I don’t like Avon, I don’t like pyramid schemes, I don’t care about products being paraben free because honestly the studies for and against parabens haven’t really swayed me, and foil sachets are the devil’s work. Nah.

Damn, Bellabox. It’s harder to impress me than I thought. Last month all it took was a well placed mascara. I think, if the lipstick had been a gorgeous red or something, I might have been pulled over to being okay with this box. As it stands, eh. I’m keen to give the mask a go, the hand sanitiser will eventually get used, and I like that Bellabox put a damn lipstick in the box, but otherwise…flop. Not my theme, not my month, not for me. Hopefully Lust Have It will step it up this month, or the soon-to-come Marie Claire the parcel will blow me away, because I’m getting disillusioned and I want to go home.

Oh, Bellabox. 1/5.