Sephora PLAY! February 2017 Subscription Box Review

Hi, friends! Happy Monday to you!

Today I wanted to share with you a review of my most recent Sephora PLAY! box. Sephora PLAY! is a monthly subscription box that is similar to Birchbox. Each month you receive 6 beauty samples based on a profile that you setup on Your profile tells them your hair and skin type and specific concerns (dry skin/hair or anti-aging, for example).

Sephora PLAY! February Subscription Box

I’ve had a subscription since last July after spending several months on the wait list, and trying out Birchbox in the meantime. Other than one perfume, I wasn’t super impressed with the samples I received in Birchbox. However, I have really loved PLAY! since switching. Sephora sends you samples that you can literally pick up in person in their stores — something I really like.

In 2016, my New Year’s resolution was to learn more about makeup – which is why I decided to signup for subscription boxes. So far, I have learned so much! My beauty routine is pretty low-key, and was before 2016, but I’ve started using a few new products in the past year that I think make a big difference.

This month’s PLAY! box was titled “The Soft Side: Make a Radiant Understatement”. Coming in a gorgeous silk bag (though I still haven’t figured out a use for these bags), I was excited about this box as soon as I saw the theme… this is exactly my beauty style!

Muted, mellow shades and skin-perfecting formulas are a never-fail way to show off your natural beauty. From a romantic lip color to a radiance-boosting eye cream, add definition and just a hint of drama with this month’s subtle-yet-stunning lineup of makeup and skincare.

Sephora PLAY! February Subscription Box

Upon opening the box, I was pumped. Everything in it was exactly me. I usually like at least a couple of items, but I thought I might end up liking everything in this box.

The goods and my first impressions:

  • Clinique Pep-Start Hydroblur MoisturizerA lightweight, oil-free moisturizer-meets-primer instantly blurs imperfections while providing all-day hydration for a silky, soft-focus finish. I had super high hopes for this box. I’m still debating purchasing a full size primer I received in a previous box, but this being a moisturizer + primer in one seemed perfect. Unfortunately, my first use didn’t really give me the “blur” as promised. I’m going to continue using this, but as of right now I don’t plan on buying the full size.
  • NARS Velvet Lip Glide in Bound: A nude-pink, stay-all-day liquid lipstick that applies easily and leaves a semi-matte finish with a silky feel. Nude-pink? Stay-all-day? Semi-matte? SIGN ME UP! I’ve gotten a few glosses before, but none have been ideal colors for wearing to work (none of my colleagues wear lipstick to work, so I’ve wanted something subtle that doesn’t look like I’m trying to hard). Even better, NARS is a great brand! I’m a big fan of my NARS blush, so I know the quality of their products. Anyway, yes I love this!! I can see myself buying the full size version in the future. It’s the perfect nude color with just a hint of shine and color – perfect for work! Also, it felt moisturizing which is good for my super chapped lips that crack easily.
  • Sephora Lashcraft Length & Volume MascaraA jet-black volumizing mascara with an innovative flat paddle-shaped wand to lengthen and lift lashes. So far I like this mascara. I’m a Diorshow lover (waterproof specifically!), but since that waterproof mascara doesn’t come off easily at night I’ve been considering something non-waterproof. It lengthens and plumps, but I need to keep testing it out because I think it might be clumping pretty easily… so stay tuned!
  • Too Faced Lip Injection Glossy in MilkshakeSheer tinted gloss uses a botanical-infused formula to visibly plump lips instantly while also hydrating and softening overtime. Everything about this gloss sounds really cool. As the directions stated, it definitely made my lips tingle for the first few minutes… so possibly plumping? I have pretty full lips regardless, but the softening aspect and small plumping ability sounded intriguing. I don’t love the color – it’s a little too “white shimmery” – but I can see myself laying the NARS lipstick on top of it. Another stay tuned based on if I see any improvements after a few days of usage!
  • Origins GinZing Refreshing Eye CreamA luminous eye cream infused with coffee beans, ginseng, and magnolia extract to visibly brighten and depuff the undereye area. Okay, so I have to admit I’ve never had any issues with undereye puffing – but I do have chronic dark circle that I’ve covered with concealer for years (!!). It promises anti-aging benefits (which I’m trying to be proactive about) and the brightening sounded super intriguing. I definitely think it brightens a bit. I’d like to see if I can tell the difference in the mirror at work (I don’t really assess my appearance on the weekend!) before deciding to purchase a full size of this.
  • Marc Jacobs Divine Decadence: This perfume has floral perfume smells good, but not good enough to purchase a full size bottle of. Receiving perfume samples is the least exciting part of any PLAY! box, but I thought it was fun to try the perfume of a nice brand like Marc Jacobs!

I’ll let you guys know if I end up buying the full size of any of these! Super excited to play with these this work week. 🙂

xo Nadine

Fun Facts Friday {2.24.17}

Happy FriYAY! Welcome to a permanent weekly series here on the blog that is a rotation of ‘Friday Favorites’ and ‘Fun Facts Friday’ posts. This is a weekly space where I share my favorite reads and finds of the week, or fun facts to share from recent life! Feel free to join in and share your favorites of the week in the comments!

Well, that was an unintentional hiatus from the blog. Having plans for one single night last weekend + resuming my normal early morning workouts left me BEYOND exhausted each night after work. In fact, tonight (I’m typing this up on Thursday) I fell asleep during the news! For me, falling asleep in the evening hours before a normal bedtime = I’m super exhausted. With that said… here’s this week’s Fun Facts Friday so you can learn why I’m so tired this week! TGIF!


1. This gorgeous weather has been amazing!!!! But such a tease…. today I was so excited for spring to come which means so many fun things to do in Boston, but then I remembered that it’s only February… womp womp.


2. My 2 week trial to expired yesterday, so I’ve been trying to get as much information as possible out of it before it ended (my second reason for not having time to blog this week!). I got a TON of information, and did pretty well on my tree, but there is SO much more to do and I didn’t have time to do it. So now I’ll turn to free resources to both complete the tree (as far as I wish to extend it) + begin discovering more little specifics about people (like what their careers were, military service, etc). I’m really enjoying the research… people that know me well know that I’m a really good internet “stalker”/Google searcher, so it’s fun putting my research skills to use! Possible future career opportunity?


3. On Tuesday night, I went to Harpoon Brewery’s X-Night at their Seaport location. Once a month (every third Tuesday), Harpoon has a special 2 hour event from 7:30-9:30 where they serve a beer that they’re considering introducing, or simply is a creative experiment. This month fell in the “creative experiment” category and was a California ale-type beer with smoky malt added to it, so it was a smooth ale with a smoke (almost bacon) flavor. I don’t normally like smoky, but I enjoyed the beer – however my comrades did not.

Harpoon X- Night Beer
In addition to the beer, you also receive a Harpoon pretzel as part of your $20 registration fee. This was my first time going to Harpoon (after attempting 3 times previously), but I had heard SO MUCH about their pretzels. They did not disappoint! They serve a choice of a regular salted (with choice of two dipping sauces: IPA Cheese (YUM!), Ale Mustard (YUM), Bacon Ranch, Buffalo Blue Cheese, and Spring Veggie Dip), a cinnamon sugar (with chocolate mousse and caramel sauce), or a Parmesan (with marinara) pretzel. During X-Night they only serve the regular salted, but I’m excited to try the rest. The pretzel was big and warm and super soft and like the best dinner roll ever. Yessssss

Overall it was a fun event! It started a little later than I’d prefer (we got dinner first at Tony C’s! I got the cheeseburger. Yum! #foodoverload), but since the brewery closes to the public at 7 then that’s what they have to do. They also do raffles if you post on social media, and my friend won a free ticket for next month’s event… so back we go!


4. Last Saturday I traveled to Connecticut to surprise one of my college girlfriends for her 30th birthday. We had it at Brewport Brewing Co in Bridgeport where we rented a private room for 3 hours. Brewport was SO BUSY! We got there around 5:30 and the place was packed! They had a huge parking lot and three parking lot attendants, so you got a space but I imagine they fill up very frequently. Brewport itself is also HUGE. There’s a giant bar area and then a ton of tables for eating/drinking. While large, it’s also super packed… even at 5:30.

They had great beer (mix of stuff they brew themselves plus, surprisingly, beers from other breweries), but the real highlight was the pizza. Holy yum the pizza!! I don’t see it listed on their website, but our collective favorite was the mashed potato pizza. I’ve had it a couple of times before, and it was definitely just as amazing (though the second time I had it I didn’t like it as much, so this was just as good – or better – as the first). If you’ve never had mashed potato pizza then it’s basically crust (in the New Haven area it’s thin crust – not my favorite, but I’ll still eat it!), mashed potatoes (some garlic in there), and a little Parmesan cheese. Every time they brought out a new pie, people jumped on it and ate the entire (huge) thing in about 1 minute flat. The other types were really good too, but God what I wouldn’t give for another pie (for myself!). Don’t knock it ’til you try it. 🙂

Anyway, my friend was super surprised – literally no idea this was happening – and it was a great night. Totally wiped me out for the rest of the weekend (and week!).


5. I had a three day weekend, so after getting brunch and hanging out for a few hours on Sunday with my friends, I drove north to my parent’s to spend the rest of the day/night with them. I watched Victoria with my mom and then got an amazing night’s sleep before going to visit my grandmother the next day on my way home. Gotta check everyone off the visit list. 😉

She’s my biggest reason to find an excuse to visit my parents. 😉


6. Because of the previously mentioned amazing Boston weather, today some of my colleagues and I walked to get lobster rolls for lunch at The Barking Crab. It was a little pricier lunch than we meant to have, but holy amazing. For $27 we got a great big lobster roll with lots of meat, a pickle (my fav!), fries, and coleslaw. Reasons why I love working in Boston…. so much super accessible fresh seafood! My version of heaven.

Lobster roll from The Barking Crab
7. My February Sephora Play! box arrived this week and I finally opened it tonight (I like to procrastinate opening it because it’s like getting a present!). I’m so excited to try out EVERYTHING in this month’s box. So much stuff that’s totally my style! I’m hoping to share a review of the box next week after I get a chance to try everything in the next couple of days.


8. I think I’ve been battling some sort of bug this week that my coworker had first. I have on and off nausea and my stomach has been acting upset – which also might be why I’m so fatigued. Not fun, but at least I’m not actually getting sick to my stomach. Glass half full!


9. Since I was feeling sick, today I decided to pull out one of my Stew Leonard’s bagels that I had buried in the freezer. It was a french toast one and it was delicious with some butter spread on top. I don’t normally like to eat carbs first thing in the morning during the week, but I’m trying to avoid much else beyond carbs at the moment…


10. I’ve been trying to get to 10 facts and here ya go. I meant to go to bed earlier since I have an early morning spin class planned for the morning (I usually take a rest day on Fridays in lieu of sleeping in…) since my normal Monday night class was cancelled… and then I’m doing another on Saturday, but since my regular class has a sub anyway, I’ve decided to sleep in and do the 9:45 class instead! Small wins. 😉

xo Nadine