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Friday, August 23, 2013

First Birchbox REVIEW!

Overview of the Birchbox I got: 

Keep in mind I am reviewing this as someone with an autoimmune disease.  Though mentioned before, being hypothyroid after a total thyroidectomy is causing me to have dry skin, feelings of numbness & soft to the touch in the fingers, feelings of being clammy & being ice cold, cold sweats, hard to taste sweet (because of the prednisone), brittle & soft nails... just to name a few... again.

  • Kiss-Kiss Rendezvous lip gloss by Secret Agent Beauty.  It goes on very slippery & oily feeling.  Looking at the details & ingredients (vitamin E, aloe, oils of sunflower, almond, jojoba) it's almost expected to be that way.  Believe it or not, I like glosses that are more sticky, they just seem to last longer with me.  Some people don't like that though. It definitely nourishes the lips & lasts a good long while & has a nice, light, fruity scent.  It says it has real gold flecks in it but it really doesn't show.  I would use this more for a conditioning treatment on its own or on top of a lipstick.  I'm open to buying it in the future.
  • Fresh Feet Wipes by Jasmine SevenThese were nice!  In the summer I usually love using the Peppermint Cooling Foot Spray from The Body Shop but after using these I think I may switch!  The are ALCOHOL FREE, unlike the spray from The Body Shop (1st ingredient is Alcohol Denat).  The peppermint is not overpowering, it has moisturizing ingredients like vitamin E & aloe, & it's MUCH easier to use as a wipe also because now I can get in between my toes!  Sprays you end up using a lot to try to get them in the right spots & they can be drying, especially ones with alcohol.  I used 1 sheet on both feet in the morning before noon, I went to an appointment, wore my sandals out, it's now a bit after 5pm & my feet still smell nice & feel nice.  You buy a canister or packs with 6, 10, or 25 which would fit easily into purses!  I will be buying these in the future!
  • Thermal Spring Water spray by AvèneReading up on it it claims to have benefits of, softening skin & help with dermatitis, psoriasis, burns & there have been studies done showing mineral water can help with these things but It just didn't do much for me.  I've been using it a few times per day after cleaning or if I feel it would freshen me up.  The mineral water goes on splotchy at times instead of a consistent fine mist.  It's a nice refresher if you are out in the heat but that's about it.  You could probably buy mineral spring water & put it in a bottle, keep it in the fridge or a cooler & spray it on when you feel you need a refresher.  Otherwise because it is an aerosol, the bottle does keep the mist cool when you use it.  I can tell you, with being hypothyroid, I saw no improvement to my skin with this.  I didn't feel it gave my skin any healing benefits over the time using it & I don't feel it would over any extended period of time also.  Who knows, maybe it would but I'm not going to spend the $ to find out.  If you live where it's hot & humid & you are out & about a lot I would probably suggest it for something to carry in your purse for limited use. I wouldn't buy it.
  • Refresh mint gum by Glee Gum.  It sucked.  I don't really chew gum because I have TMJ & have screwed up my teeth pretty bad from it.  My old dentist knew it was happening & let it go now requiring me to need $15K in dental work that I can't afford.  Sore subject & another story for another time so back to the gum.  I like a harder piece or gum also because of my dental problem & this was just way too soft.  The flavor was also gone within 1-2 minutes.  I wouldn't buy it.  
  • Premium BB SPF 45+ by Dr. Jart+.  This is the first BB I have ever used.  It looked to dark when I opened it up & when I put it on there was just too much red in it.  After I put it on my face felt dewy for the rest of the day which I didn't care for & it wasn't as "correcting" for my skin as I would have liked it to be.  It may have been because of the high SPF as I tend to get that dewy feeling the higher the SPF count is in makeups & lotions.  The color made me look into my Birchbox account because when I go foundation shopping I'm kind of in between a light an medium complexion even though I avoid the sun like the plague.  I ended up changing my settings to light because I think there will just be too much variation in the medium complexions for me.  If I get anything that's too light in the future, it will still be easier to correct & use.   I'll be giving this sample away.  I personally wouldn't buy it but it may work nice for others.
This was fun!  It definitely was worth $10 & I'm excited to see what I may get in the future. 

New nail polish for the week Sephora by OPI in Havana Dreams (no longer available) with Rainbow Honey in I Miss You!  I LOVE the Rainbow Honey!  Look closely, there are hearts & butterflies in it!  I might try to keep this one on for as long as I can!  Loving the combo!  

Julep kind of got on my shit list over the past few days.  After my last post I got an e-mail from them advising in order to cancel my Maven account to call them.  So, it HAD been activated.  Or so I thought?  Yet it STILL wasn't showing I had an active Maven account on their site.  So I call & wait a bit, get a sweet girl on the phone who confirms that it's not activated (POINTLESS PHONE CALL), though the e-mail advises it was.  So I have to ask her like 2 times to be sure that it isn't.  Apparently, if you had an account then deactivated it, you cannot re-activate the Maven account online & have to call or do it through e-mail, but I'd call to be safe.  After that I would have been fine but another day later I get ANOTHER e-mail from them & I just got pissed:

Aug 22 10:54 am (PDT) 
Hi Amanda,

Thank you for reaching out to us. We sincerely apologize for the confusion. Looking at your account it looks like you used to have an active Maven subscription but it is currently inactive. If you would like, we would be more than happy to reinstate your subscription and have your account reactivated, unfortunately you are unable to create a new account with the same email address.

In regards to Free shipping, The Maven Introductory boxes are exempt from free shipping charges because free shipping and 20% off are the major benefits of joining the Maven program. We offer all of our Mavens free shipping and 20% once they become a Julep Maven, and customers are not recognized as Maven customers until they have received their Introductory Maven box. If you have any other questions arise or you have any other concerns we would be more than happy to help you. Until then, have a great day!

Maven Customer Service Team
Wow you guys are a mess.  I thought I was done with the e-mails between your company & then I get this one.  I called the other day because I got an e-mail reply saying I HAD to call because the account was activated & they could only deactivate it over the phone.  Then when I called they said it wasn’t activated!  Your online says maven accounts ship free but I can’t find anywhere once you sign up that the 1st box DOESN’T ship free.  Only: Enjoy 20% off all products plus free shipping.  Once you are a Maven, just choose shipping option “Free 5-10 business days” at checkout to ensure you get your orders shipped free of charge. All free shipping orders are shipped DHL.  To be technical, as you do not have a disclaimer for it, signing up AS a Maven would constitute for having the free shipping option as your customer would then be a Maven at the point of sale.  I can’t be the only one who has questioned this.

I DO NOT want the account reinstated.  I got an e-mail with a link to reactivate my account & had a HELL of a time trying to do so, but on the phone I was told I would have to call or e-mail to activate.  Another thing not specified on your site.  I’m not creating a new account.  I was logged into my account & it told me I could not create a new account.  It makes no sense.  This is also an inconvenience if I ever do want to sign back up because I have no other e-mails I use.

There are just too many problems & I keep getting different stories & information from everyone.  Nothing personal to the person that gets this but this company really needs to get their shit together.  You guys REALLY need to clarify this information online also.  Can you imagine a class action lawsuit for what your site says & all the people you would have to send refunds to just because of a 1st “Maven” shipment?  This stuff needs to be disclosed CLEARLY on your site.  I’m not going to be the asshole that would peruse this, but I’ll definitely write about it & get the word out.

I’m not going to be shopping with you again.  If anything, I want my e-mail & information out of your system completely.

I really DON'T think they are trying to "pull" anything but anyone who knows me knows how technical & analytical I can get about things.  Really, until I can get back on my feet again I have nothing better to do.  Even after this, I was trying to justify their company.  Yes, they have a good product.  They also promote this "Powered By Girlfriends" & state on their site, "We are proud to donate a percentage of proceeds from the sale of every Julep Nail Color to organizations that empower women. We also encourage all of you in our Julep community to like us on Facebook so you can keep posted on opportunities to help us support specific charities throughout the year."  Of course I looked into it & I found only 3 things.  2 on Facebook.  September 2009 which looked like a fundraiser they were having for, I believe, Susan G. Komen & another in September 2012.  Then another in January 2013 where 100% of proceeds for certain polishes went to anti-trafficing causes and I had to dig to find out who specifically.  I'm sure there's more.  It makes me feel better about the company but I really do wish they would be more pro-active promotion of this, who, when & what they are donating to or updates as to how much they raised for these groups or even how people can donate on their own.  That's what Julep is about... right?  The majority of searches just comes up with their mission statement about their donations that I posted in this paragraph.  Again, this is solely my experience with them.  I'm also probably extra moody because of my condition & medication I'm on but, I'm done with Julep.

So tonight I had a simple warming bath:
I'm exhausted now.

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