Birchbox unboxing July 2014

Birchbox unboxing July 2014

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 1Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner – cones rule this one out for me personally. Actually what’s odd is that some of the colors of this eyeliner use cones and some don’t so I had a 50/50 chance of being able to use this. They sent me the black which gets a healthy 1 with the cosmetics database. Which means it sucks that I react to cones by breaking out badly.

RUFFIAN Nail Lacquer – Ambrosia – This shade is a metalic orchid / purple shade. I don’t think it’s a good summer color but I do think I will wear it come fall and winter.

RUFFIAN Nail Lacquer swatch Ambrosia
ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 4RUFFIAN Dressing Room Nail Lacquer Remover Towelettes – while not horrible (no nail polish remover will rank a zero and this isn’t bad at a 4 with the cosmetics database) the added fragrance AND no added healthy oils means I will likely stick with the LA FRESH® Eco Beauty Acetone-Free Nail Polish Removers. They are also a 4 but they have aloe, rosemary extract, vitamin E and a few other things that I’ve liked.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 4Naobay Body Radiance Lotion – no cones, no parabens, and many of the ingredients are organic. I’m excited to try this one. One caveate … fragrance (parfum) is hidden in there and I don’t know if it’s from essential oils or not. The description says no synthetic dyes but it doesn’t say no synthetic fragrances. If they want to be truly natural, that needs to be clarified. In the meantime, “Fragrance” gets them some point docked both by myself as well as on the cosmetics database report making this a 4. Still not bad but it would be SO much better if fragrance were from essential oils. And it might be which would mean this would rank better than a 4 if that were the case. It’s just not clear from anything on the Birchbox OR the company website whether or not the fragrance is synthetic or from natural ingredients.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 2Real Chemistry Luminous 3-Minute Peel – no cones, no fragrances, no parabens… but I don’t expect this to rank well simply because almost no face peels rank well. So keeping that in mind… wow this actually ranked low! It’s a surprising 2 with the cosmetics database! I love peels and exfoliators so I will likely try this.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 2100% Pure Gingerade Shower Gel (Honey Cream Wash) – no cones, excellent ingredient list and is a 2 with the cosmetics database. I’m excited to try this one though I hate little packages like this for the shower. I have to remember to cut them open before I get in the shower because they are nearly impossible to open otherwise particularly after you get your hands wet.

There’s also a magazine subscription bonus in here. A year’s subscription to Women’s Health and it doesn’t look like there’s any strings attached! (I’ll have to read the fine print in a bit.)

 Still not signed up for Birchbox? :D

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Birchbox unboxing June 2014

Birchbox unboxing June 2014 • via

Benefit They're Real! Mascara wandewg skindeep cosmetics database score 4Benefit Cosmetics – Benefit They’re Real! Mascara: no cones but not waterproof and I’m not a huge fan of the brush type. I can’t ever seem to get the spiky ones to work as well as the brush type wands. It ranks a 4 with the cosmetics database which is ok though.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 2Cynthia Rowley Beauty Creamy Lip Stain in Valentine: cones rule this out for me which is too bad because it’s a cute shade AND it’s a healthy 2 with the skin deep cosmetics database. So healthy and cute but I can’t use it personally.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 7English Laundry Signature for Her: no no no. Not only is it a synthetic fragrance but it has even more unhealthy ingredients beyond that. On the plus side though this one came in a sealed pouch so it didn’t kill me when I opened the box so that part’s good. It ranks an unhealthy 7.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 3Evologie Stay Clear Cleanser: looks good. It’s ok. I’ve used it for about three days now. Not a miracle worker but seems pretty good. Not too harsh which is one of the problems with many of the acne focused cleansers. It has not caused any problems and I do wonder if it would have better results over time because it’s not harsh. If you want a soap style cleanser this seems like a good choice.  It’s going to be tough for anything to beat the Liz Earle hot wash cleanser though. This ranks a decently healthy 3 with the skin deep cosmetics database.

ewg skindeep cosmetics database score 3Number 4™ Super Comb Prep & Protect cones rules this out for me. If they hadn’t added fragrance though it would be pretty healthy too – it ranks a 3 as well.


 Still not signed up for Birchbox? :D

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Some TJ Maxx shopping / Cynthia Rowley Haul {May 10, 2014}

Navy and white striped linen blend Ellen Tracy sweater with 3/4 length sleeves. Great for layering over tanks.
Navy and white striped linen blend Ellen Tracy sweater with 3/4 length sleeves. Great for layering over tanks.

So I went shopping at TJ Maxx Saturday looking for some simple business casual pieces that would work well in the hot summer heat and with my existing wardrobe. I was mostly looking for light layering pieces like short sleeved breezy cardigans and super light light sweaters that would work well over tank tops.

Let’s start with the items I passed on:
(and then we’ll get to the good stuff)

NOW on to the good stuff:
(I went in thinking I might find one good piece but instead found a bit more!)

I ALMOST passed on the silk tank top because of the price. It’s been awhile since I spent $30 on a single shirt. But it’s a good business meeting piece and comfortable so it came home with me. Really cute button top in the back that I didn’t take a better photo of too.

As for buying TWO short sleeve linen blend cardigans – I already own some long sleeve linen blend cardigans [seen here and here] and LOVE them which is part of the reason I just bought both short sleeve linen blend cardigans. I also have the same long sleeve jacket in black as well as the neutral shade.

I probably could wear the long sleeve cardigans in the summer they are so light but they look warmer than they are. They are also warm enough though to cut the chill on a cool evening.

A surprising amount of what I bought was Cynthia Rowley. I did not plan it this way as I tend to shop by look and feel of the fabric quality when shopping in a store like TJ Maxx (I also do this when thrift shopping.) I’m clearly attracted to rayon, linen and silk though….

Anyway – WAY more items than I expected to find shopping on Saturday but they were all such good wardrobe building basic that I didn’t want to pass any up!

Birchbox June 2012 Unboxing

 What was inside:

  • Borchese “Botanico Eye Compress” (EWG 5 out of 10 – 1 being the best for healthy)
  • Jouer “Luminizing Moisture Tint” (dimethicon breaks me out)
  • Scalisi Skincare “Anti-aging Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30” (can’t find ingredient list)
  • theBalm Cosmetics “Stainiac” in color: Beauty Queen (EWG 5 out of 10 –  1 being the best for healthy)
  • Band-Aid “Cynthia Rowley Dress Up BandAid

Unboxing video:

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wearing: Express thrifted blouse and Chico’s hot pink tank