Wednesday 22 September 2021

A Late Unboxing Of Glossybox UK - March 2021 Edition - Pretty Pleasures*

After a little break where I posted some slightly different content, I'm back today and I'm playing catch up again!

Even though our thoughts are now heading towards Autumn and dare I say it, even Christmas, let's take a trip back to the newness, and the hope that springtime brings, as I share with you my thoughts on the March 2021 edition of Glossybox UK.

After the retro cassette tape design of February's "Sing, Dance, Love Repeat" box, March's box saw a return to the classic design and the traditional pink and black colour way.

As per usual the information leaflet gave us not only the lowdown on the products inside the box, but it also revealed the theme of March's box which was "Pretty Pleasures". The contents was specially selected to remind us of the newness and prettiness of Spring, providing us with a range of pretty pastel tones products that would look great and make us feel great.

Figs & Rouge Satin Soft Blurring Primer & Finishing Fix - 30ml - Full Size - RRP £38

I think I've mentioned this before but I can never quite decide whether primers are actually skincare products, or make up products. It's a tough one isn't it? Especially since the majority of primers now contain a whole host of skincare ingredients.

So whether it's make up or skincare, the first item in March's box was a primer and a finisher from UK based, ethical and vegan skincare brand Figs & Rouge.

Containing marshmallow root extract, arctic cloudberry, hyaluronic acid and beta hydroxy acid, this silicone free primer can be used both under and on top of make up, and is designed to blur imperfections, banish shine, minimise pores and prevent blemishes.

Packaged in a gorgeous pink and gold tube, the primer itself is pale pink in colour and it has a thin, liquid, almost serum like texture.

After cleansing and moisturising, you just pat a tiny amount of this subtly sweet smelling primer over your face, concentrating on the t-zone. It is super lightweight and absorbs into the skin almost straight away, leaving it feeling smooth and silky, without the heaviness and tackiness that you can often experience with silicone based primers.

Straight From Tube

Slightly Blended Out 

I tried and tried to capture the effect on my face but for some reason you could never quite see what I was seeing in real life. In the mirror I noticed a definite mattifying effect, and an almost blurring of my skin texture, which you can just about see in the swatch photograph below.

When Fully Absorbed

This primer just made my skin look smoother and more perfected. Since it was so lightweight it was a perfect base for foundation. I used it with a liquid foundation and there was no heaviness, stickiness or separation, just a really smooth finish.

Not only is this a primer though, it can also be used as a finisher to help set your make up, and to blot down shine. I used it on top of both a liquid foundation and a loose powder, lightly patting a tiny amount onto my t-zone. It was lightweight enough not to really disturb the make up underneath , and it didn't cause any pilling or separation, it just tamed the oiliness and helped to blur the obvious pores on my nose.

I completely understand the pull of silicone based primers, they create an almost glass like, velvety finish, they you foundation pretty much sticks to, but sometimes they can feel a bit heavy and to be honest they can sometimes make my oily bits feel even more oily, which is why, especially lately, I seem to moving more and more towards silicone free, and more lightweight primers like this one.

Not only does the more liquid texture and lack of silicone of this particular primer, feel lighter on the skin, but it also does exactly what you would want it to, pores are less obvious, oiliness is reduced, it's a great make up base, and it just makes your skin look better.

With an RRP £38 this isn't the cheapest primer on the market, but if it sounds like a texture that you might like, then it's well worth it. You can buy it exclusively from Amazon UK via Figs & Rouge.

Nails Inc Nail Polish - Palace Gardens - 10ml - Full Size - RRP £11

I love me a nail polish but whether it's down to logistical reasons, or whatever, you don't actually see that many nail colours in subscription boxes, so its always a bit of a bonus for me when you get one, even if like this one, it's a polish that you already own.

I have a lot of nail polishes and I probably own more Nails Inc polishes than any other brand, so I guess it's not real surprise that I already had this colour in my collection.

In the old style, cylindrical bottle Nails Inc Palace Gardens, is a dusky, duck egg, blue, grey colour.

Unlike the now common Nails Inc thick brush with a slightly curved edge, this brush had a slightly curvy edge but it was quite thin and a touch straggly, and as a result it wasn't that easy to control. The polish also seemed quite thick so it wasn't the easiest nail paint that I'd ever done.

Probably because of the thickness of the polish, the coverage was excellent, it was pretty self levelling, and you couldn't really see any brush strokes. I could potentially have just got away with one coat. especially since the polish was quite slow drying, but as per usual for full coverage I went for two coats, and as per usual since I was reviewing the polish - no top coat.

It had a lovely glossy finish, and I loved the colour and finish even on my relatively short nails, but to be honest this wasn't the best Nails Inc polish that I'd ever used. As I saw the brush and the formulation just weren't what I've come to expect from Nails Inc, and the wear time wasn't up to scratch either with the first chip appearing after less than 24 hours wear!

I sometimes wonder if brand like Nails Inc manufacture products like this especially for brands like Glossybox at a lower price, and they just aren't the same quality as their normal full price products. Strangely enough the other bottle of Palace Garden that I have was a magazine freebie in a similar cylindrical bottle, so who knows?

It's a real shame either way as this is such a pretty colour and Nails Inc as a brand is usually fairly reliable.  Other than the secondary market this particular polish is nearly impossible to find, although you maybe ben able to find in the new style bottle in the Nail Kale formulation.

Beautaniq Beauty Nourishing Mascara - 8ml - Full Size -RRP £15.00

Next up a make up product, and pastel theme continues, not in the Beautaniq product itself but instead in the pink and duck egg blue packaging.

I honestly thought that I'd tried more from this brand, but I can only find one other review from them, and it was for a pair of beautiful angel wing under eye patches, that I received in the June 2020 edition of Glossybox UK.

If you haven't heard of them Beautaniq are a cruelty free, plant based, earth loving, sustainable, UK manufactured, make up and skincare brand.

The product that I received in March's box was the Beautaniq Beauty Nourishing Mascara. Containing nourishing ingredients such as camellia oil, and almond oil, which are both rich in vitamin E and Oleic acid, this mascara claims to add volume, thicken, lengthen, and curl the lashes, as well as separating, defining and evenly coating every single lash

Beautifully boxed, this mascara is packaged in a squeezy tube. Although in my experience they do dry out a little bit more quickly than conventional mascaras, I am actually a fan of squeezy tube mascaras because you do same to waste less product, and from the start to the finish it's really easy to get the product onto the brush.

The consistency of the mascara was good, it wasn't too wet and it wasn't too dry. The mascara comes with a nice, traditional, full bristle spoolie. It was really easy to apply, the coverage was good, and the spoolie did a really good job of separating the lashes.

I'm wearing two coats in both of the after pictures - 1 coat gave a really, really natural separated look, where as two gave a more noticeable separated, fuller, longer, darker, lash look, so it's definitely a mascara that you can layer up for more of an impact. I haven't used a lash comb in these pictures and as you can see there is virtually no clumping or blobbing.



There was a tiny bit of transfer at first but bar a tiny bit of under eye smudging towards the end, I got a good 5 hours plus of wear out of this mascara on a pretty warm day. By and large it stayed put and it felt comfortable on my lashes and it didn't made them feel dry, stiff or heavy.



Although it's fairly buildable, this isn't the most dramatic mascara that you'll ever see but it is a great everyday mascara that again does what it says it does. I was particularly impressed with the separating aspect and the fact that it doesn't clump or dry out the lashes.

Glossybox put a price of £15.50 on this product, and whilst it was £15 as of September 2022 it's actually now £19 on the Beautaniq website, all be it though in a different outer box. 

So Eco Complexion Sponge - Full Size - RRP £6

From a make up item to a make up applicator, and this time, in keeping with the pastel theme it's a another make up sponge.

I've had a few make up sponges from Glossybox now but this one is a just a little bit different - So Eco are a UK based make up brush, and beauty tool and accessory brand, which produce a wide range of products that are approved by PETA, and as well as being cruelty free, their products are also made to the highest ethical and sustainable standards, and their packaging it also made from ethically sourced, compostable, recyclable, and biodegradable materials. They also support the charity Tree Nation, planting one tree for every 100 products that they sale, so this is probably the most ethical sponge in my collection!

Their complexion sponge is in the traditional, almost pointed egg like design with a large rounded end, and a pointed tip. It felt nice and dense, whilst at the same time super soft, and lightweight.

The larger rounded end is great for applying foundation, and as I often use it for, loose powder, to larger areas, where as the slightly pointed tip is great for smaller areas such as around the eyes and nose.

This sponge washes incredibly well, and whilst there is a little bit of staining, which is probably down to the pale colour of the sponge, it's still going strong after around 3 months of use without cracking or splitting.

There are loads of sponges like this on the market at all different price points, but if you want to go for a more ethical option from a company that gives back, this one could be worth trying. It retails at £6 and is available from a variety of retailers including Beauty Bay, Look Fantastic, Holland and Barrett, HQ Hair and Tesco.

Lord & Berry Line / Shade Eye Pencil - #221 Travel Black (Dark Black) 0.7g - Deluxe Mini - Est. RRP £10

Ah my nemesis, eyeliner! To be fair though after creams and gels, for me at least pencils are probably the next easiest to use - although you probably can't tell that based on my pictures ;)

From affordable artistry brand Lord & Berry, this is a deluxe size of one of the many different type of eyeliner that they sell.

In the shade Travel Black, or Dark Black as it also seems to be known, for me it has quite an ashy black finish compared to a lot of the more glossy black that you seem to see out there.

Containing 63% natural origin waxes, it's very soft and very creamy, good in the respects that you don't need to press too hard to get some colour pay off, and it doesn't pull or drag on the eyes, but not so good in others.

It was so soft and smudgy that I really struggles (even more than usual) to get a precise line, but I hope you can see at least what I was trying to do.

On Application

Alas though i had the same issues that I often have with liners, it just wouldn't stay put, in fact it didn't even last long enough to take all of the photos, and you can already see some transfer in the picture below.

With 5 minutes it had smudged all over my upper lid, so instead of taking it off, I roughly blended it out for a very rough and ready, impromptu smokey eye, which lasted roughly an hour before disappearing completely.

Roughly Blended Out

I'm in no doubt that the softness and creaminess of this pencil lead to not only the poor wear time, but also the snapping issue that I had, and also the fact that it was so hard to sharpen it properly.

If you like creamy pencils and a super smudgy look then by all means give this a try, just don't expect it to last very long especially if you have oilier eyelids.

Glossybox place a price of £10 on this deluxe mini / travel size which is available direct from Lord & Berry from where you can also get the full size pencil which retails at £13.

So several months later than anticipated that was my review of the products in the March edition of Glossybox UK. Although I didn't really get on with a couple of the products in the box (and what does a black eyeliner have to do with spring and pastel colours?) I was still pretty pleased with the other 3 items in the box, and as per usual the box was well worth the money x Don't forget to use my link to find out more about Glossybox, and you can also use it to find out a little bit more about this years Glossybox advent calendar. Thanks for reading and I will see you later this week with another post x 

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