Walmart Beauty Box: Fall 2014

So the internets were all abuzz when Walmart introduced their own seasonal beauty box. Priced at an affordable $5 a box, I couldn’t resist trying it out for you all. I received mine a little later than some folks so I was able to see a few spoilers before mine showed up.


I was disappointed when mine turned out to be different than the ones I saw. It turns out there were two versions of this box. And as the beauty and box bloggers all chatted amongst themselves, it came to light that there was: a “young” box and an “old” box. And the cut-off is pretty precise. If you are 35 or above when you signed up you get the “old box”.  If you are 34 or below when you sign up, you get a “young box.”

Thanks Walmart, because I totally needed to feel more waves of panic and nausea as my 35th birthday approaches in a mere matter of days. Since I was still clinging to 34 when I signed up I was technically young and received the “young box”.  I’m guessing next time I’ll get the “old” box and we’ll see some denture cream, Depends and support hose. (I kid, I kid).
Open Box

So let’s jump in:

DeodorantSecret Clinical Strength Completely Clean Invisible Solid Antiperspirant/Deodorant,
(1.6 oz Retail: $7.92)
Description: Secret Clinical Strength Invisible Solid Antiperspirant/Deodorant is here with a Completely Clean scent and 1.6 oz size. It is formulated to provide a shield from odor and up to 100-percent odor protection.”
Verdict: Hit!
No matter how many fancy pants deodorants I try, I always come back to Secret. I haven’t every used their clinical strength (I’m an old fashioned Spring Breeze solid kind of girl) but this is my go to brand so I’m willing to give it a try. I think I’m going to set this one aside for when I plan to workout or do something strenuous. This is the only item that was included in both “young” and “old” boxes. I guess because everybody sweats? (And now I hear that phrase over and over to the tune of “Everybody Hurts” by REM).

Assorted Samples
Nicki Minaj Pink Friday
(1 oz Retail: $29.97)
Description: Designed to embody the alluring appeal and energy of the rap star, Nicki Minaj fragrance spray is an intoxicating fragrance. It includes the enticing scent of fruit and pink flower petals with just a hint of creamy vanilla, musk and a note of the woods. This eau de parfum spray combines floral and musky elements to create a one-of-a-kind fragrance that is as stylish and sophisticated as the singer herself. In addition, it comes in an elegant and statuesque bottle. This fragrance makes an ideal gift for a birthday or other occasion for the special person in your life.”
Verdict: Miss
This is the ideal gift for the “special person in your life” if they happen to be a teenager. This scent is super sweet to me and reads really young. Not like 34 or 25 young, but like 16 years old and going to Chem class on Monday.

1 Neutrogena Long Wear Foundation (Sample Card w/ coupon)
(1 oz Retail: $13.97)
Description: “12-hour makeup instantly erases the look of skin imperfections. Clinically proven to make skin tone look more even in just four weeks, even without makeup. Lightweight, natural-looking coverage resists heat and humidity. Tone-correcting complex. Titanium dioxide sunscreen. Broad spectrum SPF 20. Helps prevent sunburn; if used as directed with other sun protection measures (see directions), decreases the risk of skin cancer and early skin aging caused by the sun.”
Verdict: Miss
Putting aside that I don’t use drugstore foundation – this is the size you get from magazine samples. In fact, I’m reasonably certain I’ve gotten this same sample of this foundation in a magazine. I expect in a box they could at least spring for an itty bitty tube or a more generous sized foil packet. For folks that do wear this type of foundation the saving grace is that it came with a coupon so that’s really where the value is in this item.

   L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Texture Perfector Pore Vanisher Cream
(1.4 oz Retail: $17.97)
Scientifically developed for all skin tones, L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Texture Perfector Pore Vanisher helps to improve overall skin quality instantly and over time. Reveal your most ideal skin now. Virtually Poreless Smooth Results Instantly: Pores appear virtually vanished. Excess oil is absorbed for an all-day, shine-free matte finish. Skin feels freshly hydrated. In One Day: Skin’s texture is visibly transformed for a refined, smooth look. In One Month: Actual pore size decreases as pores begin to snap back into shape. Overall skin quality is improved. Unique Texture: This lightweight, oil-free cream absorbs quickly with no residue or greasy feel leaving skin feeling freshly moisturized with a silky smooth matte finish.”
Verdict: Like the product, dislike the size
This sounds like a really intriguing product, especially to those of us with giant pores, but this size is useless. This is the type of product that you need to use a few times in order to determine if it’s working for you. A regular travel size rather than a packet would have been a much better option.


Dove Shampoo & Conditioner
Dove Oxygen Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner (Trial Size)
(12 oz Retail: $4.79/$4.98)
Description: Dove Advanced Hair Series Oxygen Moisture Conditioner provides your hair with moisture and 95% more volume. This gentle shampoo is made with Dove’s Oxyfusion technology, a new generation of moisture. With lightweight, oxygen-fused conditioning ingredients, it cleanses hair while adding natural-looking volume and gives your hair bounce. For best results, experience the Oxyfusion technology with the full line of Dove Oxygen Moisture products.”
Verdict: Meh
I’m just not feeling the travel size. I know this is a cheap box, but I expected to see larger sizes of products they want us to try out and not quite so many sample sizes. This is at least way more generous than the foil packets. I prefer more specialized shampoos (like the one I buy specifically for redheads) so I’m just going to put these aside for when I need to travel.

Hair Oil
Dove Pure Care Dry Oil Restorative Hair Treatment
(Travel Size)
(3.38 fl oz Retail: $11.95)
Description: “Extraordinary weightless nourishment in every drop–the lightweight, luxurious formula of Dove Pure Care Dry Oil Restorative Hair Treatment is infused with pure drops of precious oils. Upon use, hair is nourished and revitalized with added silkiness, softness, and shine. Hair is manageable and protected from the stresses induced by blow-drying and styling. It also smoothes dry ends. Unique Dry Oil Technology offers rapid absorption into hair. Hair will not be weighed down or feel greasy.”
Verdict: Like
This is another travel size, but I mind it a lot less with styling products. This makes them “purse” size and not just stingy (If that makes sense). I’ve been trying a lot of hair oils from my various boxes so I’m willing to give the Dove version a shot.

COVERGIRL Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Glossy Days Glosstinis Nail Gloss, 0.11 fl oz in After Dark

(Full size: $2.97)
Description: COVERGIRL Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Glosstinis Nail Gloss offer bright trendy colors for day. Plus, light up the night with colors that glow under black light.”
Verdict: Like but in a different season/Gift
I didn’t realize that these lit up in black light until I searched for them at Walmart. Damn this box really wants us to feel the “young” part. In any case, I do like the color, but it doesn’t feel right for fall. I think other folks got a different shade so there’s might be more fitting. Because Walmart is specifically calling this a Fall box, I think the beauty products should utilize Fall colors.

Lip Balm
L’Oreal Paris Colour Riche Glossy Lip Balm in Baby Berry
(Full size: $6.97)
Description: Ultra-glossy color for a flirty, playful pout. Glossy color lasts for hours. Crayon point tip glides over lips. Never needs sharpening–simply twist to advance.”
Verdict: Gift
This wasn’t a bad color or product but I have so much lip stuff that I gave this to a friend. I think the berry shade was nice for fall and it was a good addition to this box.


Full Box

At only $5 for the box, this paid for itself with just the deodorant.  Just tallying up the full sizes alone, we got to $17.86.

My big reservation is in the division of young/old boxes. I’m not convinced that was a smart strategy for customers. I’m interested to see if that same logic holds up for future boxes.

Did you order one of these boxes? If so, were you “young” or “old”?


Walmart subscriptions cost $5 per quarter and you receive a box seasonally (four times a year.)

June Blog Hop: Beach & Pool Bag Essentials

So May has flown by and it’s suddenly June 1st, which means it’s time again for a blog hop. I’m part of a fabulous facebook group of beauty bloggers and each month (on the 1st) we all post about the same theme. For June we’re focusing on Beach/Pool Bag Essentials.

Now as I’ve mentioned in some other posts, I’m a Ginger so I prepare for days in the sun like I’m going to war. I’m going to give you my  picks  and we’ll get ready for battle.

Now first, let’s start with the bag itself. I adore tote bags and have way too many of them and they tend to be the go to style for beach bags. But this time I decided to think outside the tote. The open top design tends to make it that much easier for sand to collect and for stuff to fall out or blow away. Instead, how about a duffle design like this fabulous Baggu Bag:

Baggu Duffle
Baggu® Sailor Stripe Duffel Bag (Retail: $82.00; Picture from
I love the nautical vibe on this and the duffle design makes it great for all kinds of uses, from the beach to the gym to a weekend travel bag. I know it’s pricey, but it’s on Birchbox so you can hoard your Birchbox points and apply them to bring the price down.

Now we need to fill this bag up.

If you picked up the Popsugar Special Edition Resort box you’ll have received this great Cuyana Turkish Towel (Estimated Retail: $55.00). It’s the classiest and comfiest beach towel I’ve ever received.

Now a makeup bag or pouch is a must have. I’m giving you a sneak peak at an item I just received from the May Jennifer Love Hewitt box (which I’ll be posting a review of soon). It’s absolutely perfect for the beach.
Mesh Bag
Mesh-Bottom Clutch (Retail: $30.00)
Description: “Shake clutch is designed to keep your items in and the sand far away. The bags feature a reversible flap pinned to either side, allowing you to reveal or conceal the netting at will. When sand begins to intrude, just flip the flap and shake, shake, shake.”

Trade in your normal wallet for something small that you can tuck into your clutch. I have this Key-Per Zip Coin from Fossil (Retail: $30.00; picture from in the whale print. It’s big enough for your ID, a credit/debit card, and money.


One of the areas that we tend to forget about sun-proofing is our hair. RickyCare SUN Grooming Comb (Retail: $2.99; picture from is a great inexpensive way to help keep our hair healthy throughout the summer.

Description: “Rickycare’s SUN comb line eliminates color fading and dried out summer texture by planting sunscreen and nutritional oils directly into your hair.This baked-in substance is gradually released from the plastic to coat hair, helping it to reflect harsh sunlight and harmful UV rays. Keep your hair looking great all summer long by simply combing with the SUN line before stepping out on the beach or by the poolside.”

As I mentioned earlier, sun protection is serious business for me so I use a variety of products to make touch-ups throughout the day that much easier. First thing to remember is that you need to apply your sunblock 30 minutes before you go outside. Then reapply frequently.

Josie Maran
Now for my face I like to use Josie Maran’s Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47 (Retail: $32.00;picture from Some face products with sunblock can sting or dry out your skin and this does a great job of keeping my skin safe from the sun but looking and feeling healthy.

Mineral Sunblock
For easy touchups, I like Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral Powder SPF 45 (Retail: $40.00; picture from This mineral sunblock helps keep away shine and is super easy to reapply.

For the lips, Dior Addict Lip Glow (Retail:$32.00;picture from is a sheer balm that adjusts color based on the wearer. It has an spf 10 and does a wonderful job of hydrating the lips.

Now for the body, I use two products, both from Neutrogena.

Sunscreen 100 spf
Before I leave the house I slather on Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Sunscreen in 100 SPF (Retail: $10.39; picture from They have other options in SPF so if you aren’t an albino like me, you can opt for a different level.

Sunscreen spray
I find there is nothing more annoying that trying to touch up your sunblock while on the sand. You inevitably get sand stuck all over you. So to combat that I use Neutrogena Fresh Cooling Body Mist Sunblock, SPF 70, 5 Ounce (Retail: $9.99; picture from  You don’t have to rub it in so you’re not rubbing sand on yourself and the cooling mist is refreshing.

Okay so now that we’ve gotten through the boring SPF stuff, let’s get on to the fun things like a little makeup and fashion.


I find it’s best to go minimalist with makeup for the beach and pool. I just go with a mascara and a lip product.

The best waterproof mascara I’ve found is CoverGirl LashBlast Waterproof Mascara in Brown (Retail: $5.29; picture from Unless you have black or really dark brown hair, I suggest brown mascara for beach days. It looks more natural and goes better with a sun-kissed glow.

Now we already have the Dior lip product above but if I’m lounging around by the pool I like to add just a little touch of sparkle. I find it really gives you that golden summer glow. I adore Yves Saint Laurent Gloss Volupté in Gold (Retail: $32.00 ;picture from Sephora).
Gold Gloss
I can count the amount of lip products I’ve finished using on one hand and this is one of them. If you wear it alone, it just makes your natural lip color vibrant and sparkling. If you wear it layered over another color it gives it a golden sheen. If you pick this up, I guarantee you’ll be using it all the time. It’s a splurge, but absolutely worth it.


Sunglasses are both fashionable and suncare, but I put them here because I find them more fun than discussing SPF. My favorite pair of sunglasses are these Hepcat Shades from Madewell (Retail: $55.00). I own these in mint and despite my huge supply of shades from subscription boxes, these are the ones I grab the most. I’m partial to the Tropical Color color.
Because of my aversion to sun, I’ve built up a collection of sunhats. They are a great way to look chic and protect your skin at the same time. This Mariner Floppy Hat from Anthropologie (Retail: 32.00; picture from gives a laidback nautical vibe and gives oodles of sun protection.

I always throw a scarf in my beachbag, so if I want I can drape it over my shoulders or even turn it into a sarong. I am obsessed with this Sea Ranch Scarf from Anthropologie (Retail: $38.00 ;picture from

So of course we need a swimsuit and one pieces are making a huge comeback. The trick to not looking frumpy is to go with a retro silhouette. They look fun and flirty and they give great coverage if you are on the more modest side. Modcloth is my go to place for swimsuits and they have an amazing selection of fun summer fashion in a huge assortment of sizes.

I own Bathing Beauty One-Piece Swimsuit in Cherry Pie (Retail: $89.99; picture from and adore it. I love gingham and the shape on this is so flattering.

For a coverup, I love the flowy feel of a maxi dress and it gives me the bonus of not having to worry about reapplying sunblock to my legs every five minutes.   This Summer Night Stroll Dress from Modcloth (Retail: $44.99; picture from is perfect for being casual at the beach or heading out to a café right after.
Maxi Dress

And of course no beach look would be complete with a sandal. I love these Moxxie sandals by Pink and Pepper at Piperlime (Retail: $49.00 ;picture from They’re fun and versatile and the taupe shade will go with everything in your wardrobe.
sandals 2

So you need some tunes for ipod and a book for kindle.

CD Cover
Joe Purdy’s Julie Blue always makes me think of water and waves. It’s perfect for sitting by the beach. (Retail: $8.99;picture from

For me, romance novels are a requirement for beach and summer reading. One of my favorite ever is Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux (Retail: $7.99; picture from It’s got time travel and intriguing characters and everyone I know who’s read it, adores it. If you enjoy the romance genre and have never read this, it’s a must.

Don’t forget to throw in some of the hair ties and water bottles you’ve gotten from all those subscription boxes. Now you’re ready to go!

So what are the must haves in your beach bag?

If you enjoyed this post, please stop by and visit some of my other blog-hoppers and read their take on beach and pool bag must haves.


Michelle at Pretty in the East

Sammi at College Beauty Buff

Anna at The Anna Belle Blog 

Brittany at Lipstick and Yarn

Michelle at Beautiful Goodies

Karen at Unpack the Box

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