Dia & Co – April 2018

Another box, another new stylist!  Here’s the note from Cami,

Hi Melissa, I hope you are doing wonderful today!  I’m so sorry that the last box wasn’t all you hoped for.  Thanks for your feedback and Pinterest board.  They help tremendously!  Ok so don’t poison me for sending you the same intercoastal print as what you got in your last box!  🙂  I just know you liked the print, just not in bell sleeve form so I had to have you try it in skirt form!  Pair this skirt with the button down peplum top, tights and tall boots for a chic kinda casual/dressy look.  You can also wear this skirt with the twist top for a chic feel.  Both of these tops will pair perfectly with the camo jeans for a trendy but lightly edgy outfit.  You can also add this vest for an added touch of flair and warmth.  I can’t wait to hear what you think!  With Joy, Cami.

Well, it’s another mostly miss of a box, unfortunately.  I did have a lot of fun digging through my closet to pair with the items in the box, but ultimately, this is again too far over the line into business casual or workplace wear.  I work at home in my yoga pants and hoodies most of the time – I need less business casual and more “things I can throw on when going to the grocery store so it’s not always jeans and a t-shirt.”  At this point, I’m not sure if any of these subscription services are at all geared towards delivering what I’m looking for since I keep getting miss after miss.  Anyway, on to the contents of the box this month!

Item: Ryan Wythe Lenora 3/4 Sleeve Button Down Peplum Shirt
Cost: 
$55
Item: Marybelle Intracoastal Skirt
Cost: 
$65
Paired With: Boots, skinny jeans, crop jacket (all mine)
So, Cami suggested that I pair the skirt and peplum top together which.. Oof, that’s a big old nope on my shape.  I think the peplum top is too big to begin with (even though I changed my top size down one size after last month), and since my waistline is so high, the peplum covers nearly half the skirt.  So, on to photo 2, I paired the top with a red belt to bring in my waistline, and added skinny jeans with the  boots.  It’s a little better, but the peplum cut just does my hips (already the widest part of my body) no favors.  If I had a larger bust to balance out the peplum, I think it would work better, but.. Yeah, that’s not in the cards for me.  It’s also white, which, I mean, this is me, we’re just asking for a pasta sauce spill or something incredibly awful to ruin that shirt forever after the first time I wear it.  As for the skirt, it looked way better paired with a crop jacket to show off my waistline, and the cut is actually super cute, but.. it’s pink.  *sigh*  I have my profile set to avoid pink, yet there it is.  The colors on the checkout sheet say, “Red and White,” but I’ll be damned if that isn’t fuchsia with pink stars.  It’s also, again, too dressy, so even if I did get it in black instead, I probably still wouldn’t have kept it.  Both of these go back.

Item: Morgan & Walker Gowanus Camo Print Jeans with Double Zipper Detail
Cost: 
$75
Paired With: Jacket, t-shirt, boots (all mine)
I know I went over my dislike of camo with Stitch Fix before.  I just.. It’s not me.  It’s not something I feel comfortable wearing.  I’m not a hunter and I’m not in the military, and.. EHH.  The fit was really odd, and you can’t tell it from the photo, but the ankles were REALLY loose – like, suddenly bootcut loose which was weird since they’re skinny jeans.  The waistband was also really loose and had a bad gap in the back.  So, between the print and fit, the jeans go back.

Item: Ralph Lauren Winnipeg Quilted Vest with Faux Leather Accent
Cost: 
$129
Paired With: Jeans, shoes, top (all mine)
Eeechhh no.  I think the look on my face says it all.  It was too big around the middle and even too big across my hips (again, despite adjusting my size down a notch in my profile), and WAYY too long.  It’s also more preppy soccer mom than hippy grungeling, and was just such a huge stylistic miss here.  I also need to confess that I never saw the point of puffer vests like this – they keep the warmest parts of your body warm, but it’s my arms and hands that end up cold, so I basically need the reverse of this?  They just never made sense to me.

Item: Kiyonna Knit Jersey Twist Top
Cost: 
$58
Paired With: Jeans, Shoes (all mine)
I’d always wanted to try this exact top from Kiyonna without commitment, so I was actually sort of pleased to see this show up in the box this month.  Again, it’s probably over the line into business casual or “date night” instead of plain old casual.  But, it fits nice and looks great on – I just worry that the cut is a little too “maternity” and that instead of making me look thin by disguising my middle, the extra fabric below the waistline makes me look like I have more bulk in the middle than I do.  I’m still on the fence about this, but if I do keep anything, this will be the only item.  I really hate the idea of wasting my $20 styling fee.  *sigh*

The box merchandise total came to $382.  Unfortunately, the only thing I’m thinking about keeping is the Kiyonna top, and after deducting the prepaid styling fee, it would only cost me an additional $38 to keep that top.  It *is* a nice piece to add to my wardrobe, but something that nice, I might get to wear maybe 10 times a year at most, and I just don’t have a need for dressy stuff like that.  I sort of wanted more casual, fun printed tops (nicer than a t-shirt, but not as nice as something you’d wear to an office job).  Jeans are great, and colored denim would be fun!  Crops, capris, destructed denim, etc.  Maxi dresses, cotton blend dresses I can throw a jacket or cardigan over.  I mean, I feel like there are options here, and all these boxes keep missing the target.  I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong or if I’m not setting my profile up the right way.. Well, one more box until I give up on these altogether.  Maybe it’s just not going to work for me at all anymore which is a bummer because I love the idea of someone else picking out clothes for me, but I can’t seem to land a stylist that gets me, and getting assigned a new one after a bad box means that no one has a chance to learn and adapt to make it work.

In case you’re thinking about signing up and want to use my referral link, here it is!

Espionage Cosmetics Nexus March 2018

March’s Espionage Cosmetics Nexus has arrived earlier than expected, so that’s pretty awesome!  As usual, both the regular Nexus and Literary Nexus are going up in this post, and the theme for March was, “Hidden Treasures.”  Up first, standard Nexus!

  • Veiled Paradise – A beautiful palette of blues and greens shimmer in what looks like some kind of underground paradise.  The colors are SO stunning on this glossy nail wrap.
  • Egg-citing Manicure – Glossy dragon scales and eggs are accented with silver foil and glitter.  The pastel colors are just right for Spring and arrived just in time for Easter weekend!

The Nexus Literary shipment is also on the same “Hidden Treasures” theme and produced two nail wraps that are wildly different from each other, but still perfectly on point.  As usual, a themed bookmark is also included.

  • The Hidden Garden – Definitely a nod to The Secret Garden, this glossy nail wrap features blue glitter on a field of flowers with purple foil accents on the text wraps.  It’s a GORGEOUS wrap and I love how the flowers frame the tops of the text wraps as well.
  • The King’s Roar – This glossy and glow-in-the-dark nail wrap references The Chronicles of Narnia with gold foil accents.  This design is just too pretty with the greens and gold against each other.

Every month, subscribers are allowed to vote on each set of designs, and the winner is sent on to regular sale on the Espionage Cosmetics website.  The loser remains an exclusive wrap just for subscribers.  Each shipment costs $15 per month on a month-to-month basis, plus shipping, and since the wraps each cost $10-12 online, the value of the shipment definitely exceeds the cost.  Plus, there’s the fact that you get exclusive access to new nail wraps each month.  In case you’re thinking about subscribing, check out the link below!

Espionage Cosmetics Nexus February 2018

Another round of Espionage Cosmetics Nexus is here!  This month’s theme for both the standard and Literary Nexus was, “Voyages,” and having a husband who is a mariner, this was absolutely on point for me!  Above is the standard Nexus shipment which featured two nail wraps, both perfectly on theme.

  • Seashells & Starfish – It’s a pretty blue gradient background with pearlescent seashells and starfish printed on top.  It’s a really pretty design and will  be great for a vacation manicure.
  • That’s Nautical – A glossy nail wrap with ropes, anchors, and ships’ wheels, this features a pretty silver foil accent in the design.  Again, I think this one is going to be brought along on vacation this summer!

Nexus Literary this month on the same “Voyages” theme, featured two nail wraps that may be in my top 10 of all time.  I love that they include a bookmark every month with the Literary subscription too.  I’ve really been loving the Literary subscription – it’s such a great book nerdy addition to the Nexus lineup!

  • Odysseus’ Journey – Well I think it’s obvious this refers to the Odyssey by Home, the classic Greek epic poem.  I’m so in love with the color palette on this between the silver accented words and the wave design.
  • Voyages Extraordinaires – Another great fit to the theme, this design is based on the book of the same name by Jules Verne.  Tentacles frame the top of a few wraps with bronze accents on some of the words, and the accent wraps are blue waves with glitter.

Each shipment costs $15 per month on a month-to-month basis, plus shipping.  An online vote goes on to pick the winner of each shipment which then goes on to fame and glory for regular sale on the Espionage Cosmetics website.  The wraps individually cost $10-12 online, so the value of the shipment absolutely exceeds the cost, plus the ‘loser’ after voting each month is an exclusive that won’t be available to the general public.  There’s also a chance to add on a booster pack exclusive nail wrap that goes along with that month’s theme which I didn’t do this month (because I forgot, oops!).
In case you’re thinking about subscribing, check out the link below!

Benevolent Beauty Box March 2018

March’s Benevolent Beauty Box is here!  It’s another great box with a wide variety of products and I’m eager to try everything as usual.

  • Terre Mere Charcoal Blenders – 1 set / $44 – (Product is full size)  Probably one of the most high value products I’ve seen in the box yet, the set of two charcoal blenders in different sizes is pretty neat.  I’ll admit that I don’t use foundation ever really, but it looks like these also work well for primer and powders, so I’ll have to give them a try.  That little one looks like it might work really well for concealing my perpetually-exhausted under-eye circles.
  • Zuii Certified Organic Flora Lipstick – 4 g / $27.50 – (Product is full size)  I received the color “Charm” which is a really hard color to describe – almost a pinkish brick red?  The color is buildable, so it goes on sheer at first and works into a more opaque color with each extra coat.  The verdict is out on the color for me so far.. I think it might work better once my skin has had a little exposure to the spring and summer sun.  But, I do like the rich and moisturizing formula!
  • Luminate Vitamin C Serum – 30 mL / $19 – (Product is full size)  This is a super thick serum with hyaluronic acid, vitamin c, and jojoba oil which my dry skin loves!  For being such a thick, gel-like consistency out of the bottle, it disappears into my skin nearly instantly, leaving behind no oily residue.
  • LippyGirl Pipod Pressed Mineral Blush – 3 g / $25 – (Product is full size)  I received the color “Tangy” which is a really orange tone for a blush, so I doubt I’ll be able to use it as a blush.  But hey, any pressed powder also doubles as an eye shadow, and I really do like the color on my lids since the peachy tone brings up the greens in my hazel eyes.  It’s got a golden shimmer to it as well which will make it perfect for summer eye makeup.
  • Body Stuff Face Mask – 12 g / $7 – (Product is test-tube size)  This mask is packaged in a neat little test tube and arrives dry so you can add your favorite liquid to it (honey or yogurt for a real treat, or plain old tap water works fine too).  I haven’t tried this yet, so I can’t report about how it works, but I love the unique packaging and of course, a mud mask is something I’m always happy to see in boxes!

The total value of the box comes to $122.50 which is a great value for the cost of $29.99 on a month-to-month basis.  Even if the blush color doesn’t really work as a blush for me, it makes for a really great eye shadow color, so there’s really nothing in this box that I won’t use (one way or another).  I think the big winner for me is the serum because my skin is just perpetually a desert, and I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly it sunk into my skin for being such a thick gel.  As always, looking forward to the next month!