September’s Sephora Play! is here! The theme this month was, “The Unbasic Basics,” which is a little nebulous of a theme, so I had no idea what they were going to include or what one would even consider an unbasic basic. Clear brow gel is pretty basic, black eyeliner is pretty basic.. I don’t know. Still, it’s fun to get this box, and it’s a great value for the price point.
- Kat Von D Tattoo Liner – .7 mL / $20 – (Product is .2 mL, value of $5.71) Okay, so I’ve heard great things about Kat Von D cosmetics and I’ve been itching to try this liner for a while. The color I received is “Trooper,” a satin black. The formula goes on smooth with a very fine point and dries nearly instantly – doesn’t transfer and really seems to stay put for a long time. I’m SO clumsy and shaky-handed when it comes to liner, but this just goes on so easily, it’s like I can’t mess it up. I just may have to spring for the full size eventually, I like it that much. It’s vegan and cruelty free, but it does contain parabens unfortunately.
- Anastasia Brow Gel – 8.5 mL / $22 – (Product is 2.5 mL, value of $6.47) I use a tinted brow product that adds fullness to eyebrows since I have super thin brows and prefer that over a pencil and brow gel combo. I really need the product that has little fibers in it that stick to your hairs and create fullness since I really don’t like the look of pencilled in brows. I’ve used samples of this before, and it’s okay, but I probably would’ve preferred the tinted version since it saves time, and I only need one product instead of two.
- Living Proof Night Cap – 4 oz / $28 – (Product is 1 oz, value of $7) This is the only product I have absolutely no interest in. I have curly hair and do a low to no shampoo routine. The product sheet advertises that this is effective for up to 5 shampoos, even if you use a clarifying shampoo which means it builds up in your hair deliberately. This is really bad for a no/low shampoo regimen since you’ll probably never be able to get it out of your hair without using harsh, sulfated shampoos (a no-no for dry, curly hair). The ingredient list shows an acrylate at ingredient # 2, two sulfates, and a bunch of petroleum-based ingredients. Basically, this is a HARD PASS for me and my curly hair.
- Dr. Jart Water Drop Moisturizer – 3.3 oz / $36 – (Product is 1 oz, value of $10.91) I had to try this right away since any product meant to hydrate dry skin is exactly what I’m interested in! The formula is really unique – it squeezes out like a matte silicone-based makeup primer, but the second you start rubbing it into your skin, it changes texture and turns into a liquid. It’s really interesting! Not what I expected at all. Immediately after application, it feels a little sticky but then dries and nearly disappears, leaving behind no discernible residue or oil, and there’s no scent to it either. This would probably be great for under makeup since it feels a lot like a makeup primer. My face did feel a little dry/tight after using it, but not as bad as just doing soap/water and not putting on a moisturizer. I’d probably still have to follow up with an overnight heavy-duty face serum to keep my skin hydrated enough, but honestly, this is a great product to put under makeup since it finishes so nice and matte.
- Sephora Rouge Shine Lipstick – .13 oz / $12.50 – (Product is .035 oz, value of $3.37) I received the color, “Love Spell,” which is a pale warm pink. There’s a whopping 5/8ths of an inch of product in there which, okay Sephora, I know this is a sample box, but this is your own store-brand line and we couldn’t get a full-sized lipstick here? The color goes on rather sheer which is actually alright considering how pale of a shade this is – it’s far too light for my skin tone (pale on pale is just SO attractively corpse-like) – so it ends up that a sheer pinky nude isn’t that terrible since my natural lip color comes out more than the lipstick color. The formula is also pretty glossy and shiny for a lipstick, and it almost feels more gloss-like than lipstick-like, but wants to clump up on any dry spots and just stick in patches where it feels like it. Fun to try, and at the end of the day, I’m almost glad this was a teensy little sample because I’m just not that wowed by it.
- Tory Burch Jolie Fleur Verte Eau de Parfum – 1.7 oz / $95 – (Product is .05 oz, value of $2.79) The card backing for the sample says this is, “A Tomboy and Easygoing Mix.” No. Just no. The first scents that come to your brain when you think tomboy aren’t going to be Jasmine or Lily of the Valley. This smells more like a flower shop exploded than like a tomboy who’s been playing football, rock climbing, or having whisky and a cigar with the guys. It’s just not evocative at all of anything tomboyish – it’s really rather girly and light. I absolutely loathe jasmine and floral scents in general so this really doesn’t do it for me. The citrus twist is refreshing, but the overpowering note is the lily of the valley, and it’s just too much for me. Yet again though, I like getting these samples even if they’ve all been misses because they’re fun to try, and maybe one of them will eventually be one I like!
Overall the value comes to $36.25, and for a box that costs $10.60 per month (including tax), that’s a really good cost to value ratio! The only thing I won’t be using at all is the Living Proof product, but everything else is alright. My stand-out product is definitely the Kat Von D liner and I’m SO glad I got to try that, and between the liner and the moisturizer, my box value is well covered. Looking forward to next month!