Posted in cosmetics, subscriptions

Sephora PLAY! – Box #4 (December)

So! I got this little tidbit in my email a couple days ago:

Exciting news: more subscriptions to PLAY! by Sephora will soon be available in your area. Give your nearby friends a chance to receive an invite to a future box – and get them in on the beauty fun. Let us know which of your pals to put at the top of the waitlist! (and the disclaimer that just because you are put on the the list, this doesn’t mean you will be invited to subscribe as spots are limited.)

All excited, thinking I can share this with you guys, I call Sephora and speak to a lady with their customer service on Thursday. Erm… I explain exactly what I need to know: what cities are currently included in the PLAY! subscription areas, as I would like to put some people on the wait list but I need to make sure they can receive it.

“Oh yes. There are plenty of Sephora stores all over the United States and Canada that you and your friends can go to.”

I thank her, and tell her I know there are stores everywhere, but I needed to know where the subscription box is currently mailed. Like I live in the Cincinnati/ Columbus area and I am a subscriber, and I know that Boston was another area, and I believed Dallas was a third where people could sign up for the box. I was just wondering if there were any other areas that had been added?

“All of the United States and all of Canada has this Sephora, ma’am. It is in Dallas, yes, and everywhere else. All cities have Sephora.”

Now, I know this is not good communication. I tell her I am not talking about the actual stores. There is a subscription box called PLAY! by Sephora that began a few months ago. It is sent out to subscribers once a month. I read the email I was sent, and then explain I have a blog, and wanted to inform my readers about the wait list, but I need to know which cities this subscription box ships to. (After that, I figured surely she would understand, or at least tell me she didn’t know.)

“Yes, ma’am. Sephora ships their box to everywhere in the United States and Canada. The boxes are for everywhere. Anyone can order.”

I sigh and thank her and hang up. I then send an email from their site asking the same question. As of this posting, I’ve not heard a thing back. Sorry! BUT! If you are in Southwestern Ohio/Northwestern Kentucky, the greater Boston area, the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area, or the greater Houston area, comment down below and I will try and get you on the waitlist. It’s only through January 24th, so hurry!

Sephora PLAY! is currently only out in Houston and Dallas, TX, Boston, MA, and the Cincinnati/Columbus area of Ohio. There might be a couple more areas now, but I’m not sure. All the items come in this nice box, great for storage, and placed prettily inside. It also has a booklet with it, and the “title” of this month’s box is: Oh What Fun!. The booklet is pretty cool, going through each of the items in the box, now giving either tips or how-to steps. In the back there are five more tips for the items, how to match them up with each other, and the Play!Pass. The Pass entitles us to one-on-one advice from someone at Sephora (which I think just comes with walking in the door, really), and if you scan the Pass when you are shopping, you are awarded a bonus 50 Beauty Insider points.

2015 09 24 Play_ box

The booklet that came with it:

2015 12 Sephora booklet


How stuff looked when I opened it – I love that it’s nicely settled in there!:

2015 12 Sephora inside box


And a better look at what’s inside!

2015 12 Sephora items


Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in Matte Black: Created for the Parisian Aquatic Ballet, this waterproof eyeliner goes on easily with a creamy texture and intense, all-day color. 

Set It Straight – 3 pro tips for a perfect line

TIP 1: Get stabilized: plant your elbow on a flat surface and rest your pinkie finger on your cheek as you apply.

TIP 2: Use a credit card or a thin brush handle like a ruler to guide the liner and keep your application crisp. (My note: Okay, I am trying to picture how one does this and still has the liner curving where it needs to curve…)

TIP 3: Eeek – mess up anyway? Apply a drop of facial oil to a cotton swab for instant removal, then dab concealer over the smudge (added bonus: this will also help the liner stay put).

What do I think about it? Nice liner. It doesn’t tug at my eyes when I use it, which is a total plus in my book. Otherwise… it’s a liner. 🙂  

Would I buy this at Sephora? It retails for $19.00. I figure if I am going to pay that much for an eyeliner, I will either get the Marc Jacobs ne that came in their first box ($25.00) or something from Dior ($29.00). 

Dr. Brandt Skincare PoreDermabrasionThis dual-effect exfoliator targets pores to refine their appearance for a smooth, even skintone.

Exfoliation 101 – There are two ways to exfoliate: with chemical formulas that are used in facial peels, or with physical particles like in scrubs. PoreDermabrasion combines both methods in one treatment!

STEP 1: After cleansing, steam or hold a warm washcloth to your face for a few minutes prior to exfoliating with PoreDermabrasion.

STEP 2: Apply a thin layer to your face and gently massage for one minute, then let it soak in for a couple more minutes. Rinse off and repeat once or twice a week.

STEP 3: Remember that freshly exfoliated skin is particularly sensitive to UV rays – always use a generous amount of sunscreen afterwards.

What do I think about it? Unfortunately, this tube was empty, just like November’s Make Up For Ever Hydrating Primer.  

Would I buy this at Sephora? Mmmm, nah. Not only have I not been able to test it out, but I’ve seen some reviews about ow it feels like sandpaper, stings the skin, leaves red blotches – so no. Especially not for $58.00 for only 2 ounces.   

Smashbox Full Exposure Eye Shadow DuoEnhance your eyes with this intensely pigmented pair of eye shadows formulated to last all day and blend beautifully. 

Step By Step – Master shadow magic

STEP 1: Use a flat brush to swipe the shimmer shade across your eyelid for a perfectly even base.

STEP 2: Work the matte shade from the outer corner into your crease with an angled brush, creating depth and dimension.

STEP 3: Dab the shimmer shade to the inner corner of the eye to brighten and make eyes appear larger.

STEP 4: Blend, blend, blend! With eye shadow, sometimes a little blurry is better.

What do I think about it? Love, love, love! I am wearing these tonight on “date night”, as a matter of fact! I think I will work in the eye shadow and liner I just got in my January Ipsy Glam Bag, too. The shadows are nicely pigmented and go on so smoothly – love them!

Would I buy this at Sephora? I know I wouldn’t spend $58.00 on the Dr. Brandt exfoliator, but I would definitely spend $52.00 on the complete Full Exposure palette that these two shades are taken from.  

Fresh Seaberry Moisturizing Face OilLock in moisture and protect your skin with this lightweight formula that blends nurturing sea buckthorn with other luxurious oils. 


The Key Ingredient

Sea buckthorn oil provides 10 times more vitamin C than oranges, so step aside OJ. It’s also high in omega fatty acids and antioxidants. The benefits include:

  • Protecting skin’s natural barrier
  • Calming and soothing
  • Smoothing and softening skin

USE IT RIGHT! Oils should be one of the last steps in your skincare routine since they can penetrate creams and serums, but not vice versa. Plus they also help to seal in moisture for all-day hydration.

What do I think about it? So far I have been liking this stuff. It doesn’t just sit on my skin like a layer of… well, oil. It does sink in and penetrate, and does so pretty fast. I haven’t noticed a huge difference in the softness of my skin or anything yet – but then look at all the other things I use as well. 

Would I buy this at Sephora? I am liking Fresh products so far. I’d probably buy the small bottle (when they are back in stock!) when I need more face oil. 

NUDE Skincare Advanced Renewal Serum: Enjoy seven daily doses of this lightweight treatment serum, packed with potent natural ingredients to visibly firm, renew, and protect skin while helping prevent visible signs of aging. 

Meet The Ingredients

NUDE Skincare is known for crafting potent formulas from naturally derived, high-performing ingredients – uncover the key elements that make up your serum:

OMEGA 9 FATTY ACIDS: Hydrate and protect against environmental stress

JAPANESE SEA KELP: Nurtures with antioxidants, firms, and improves elasticity

POLYPEPTIDE REPAIR COMPLEX: Renews, smooths, and prevents signs of aging

What do I think about it? I’ll admit – I haven’t tried this yet. By the time I finally took the photos for this post, I had a couple breakouts on my face, and wanted to try this on a zit-free complexion! But probably starting in a couple days I will give these a go, and see what I think about it then. I will say I’ve heard good things about it!

Would I buy this at Sephora? Probably, even with its hefty pricetag. That’s not really THAT much when you think that it’s a serum and won’t be used up within a couple weeks. Unless you’re using it all over your body…       

Viktor & Rolf FlowerbombAwaken your senses with profuse layers of floral fragrances followed by base notes of patchouli and vanilla.

DID YOU KNOW? Flowerbomb is haute: the cult favorite was the debut fragrance from Viktor & Rolf, an avant-garde fashion house based in Amsterdam that is known for its creative style.

FUN FACT! Flowerbomb incorporates four floral notes: sambac jasmine, centifolia rose, cattleya orchid, and ballerina freesia.

What do I think about it? I like it. Not as much as I like Stella from the November box! But I do like it. It’s light, a but powdery to me, and brightens and calms at the same time. The only issue I take with this is that after a couple minutes, it seems to change scents on me, probably after combining with my body chemistry. It begins smelling like cheap drugstore perfume, like the aluminum spray cans of body mist we were always using in high school. 

Would I buy this at Sephora? I might, but probably not. It wouldn’t be at the top of my list, though – it’s not the best at showing off my personality. Plus, again with the scent changing on me… 


Even though I didn’t get to sample something (again) since the tube was empty of all but air and a chemical smell, I liked this month’s box. Again, I am so glad they have ventured into the subscription box arena!    




Syd is a Midwestern girl who doesn’t think the term “girl” is sexist in the least – especially after she left her 20s. She holds a huge love for history (from WWI through the end of WWII, Victorian, Regency, and Elizabethan eras), some science fiction, and likes to pass the time reading, working with photography and needlework, and writing things. Lots of things. Syd likes to dance, too, but she looks like an utter goob doing so!

3 thoughts on “Sephora PLAY! – Box #4 (December)

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