Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Glamour Doll Eyes OTM January 2015 Review and Unboxing

Glamour Doll Eyes was my first indie brand and is still, a few years later, one of my very favorites! I have so many of her beautiful shadows (and a few blushes) and I always want more.

GDE offers a monthly sub called the OTM, or "Of the Month". It includes at least one exclusive shadow each month, but also usually contains other products or samples, some from GDE and some from other indies. I've discovered some of my other favorite indies after sampling them thanks to OTM!

I wasn't able to get a subscription for most of last year (the time it went up for sale was a time I was busy at work) so I missed out on most of last year's OTMs...but this year, I was lucky enough to have a nice friend snag a sub for me!

January's OTM showed up today and I was so excited to see it and get a sample of what was in store for this year!

This month's theme was "Be My Anchor", and we received a shadow, a cream shadow, a tinted lip balm, and a shadow sample, as well as a few candies (there were three...but, um...I kind of ate one already.) and a cute little anchor charm.

This month's goodies came in a cute gold satin bag, with an adorable info card and sticker! I love chevron and anything nautical, so this is a really fun theme for me. I'm excited to find a chain for the anchor charm.  The full sized products are:

Be My Anchor (shadow) - A sheer flash of sparkling blue with a dusty golden base. This is so pretty! It is sparkly and almost neutral, but the perfect blue flash makes it so interesting. I can't wait to wear this one!

Sailing Away (cream shadow) - a deep royal blue base with a soft coral reef blue overlay, finished with anchor golden shimmer sheen. This is the first cream shadow I've seen from GDE and it is really beautiful! It has a nice texture and the perfect amount of shimmer. I love the shade of blue - not too dark, not too light. 

Atomic Astrid (Aqua Bomb) - This is a coral colored balm with a blackberry pomegranate flavor. This smells nice and is a gorgeous color! Unfortunately, my tube seems to be broken and will not twist up. I tried it with a brush, and it felt really nice on the lips and had a pretty color to it!

Rose City (sample baggie shadow) - This is a beautiful violet toned bright magenta with a magical green sparkle overload. It was actually designed by my friend Meagan! I haven't swatched this yet, but I am so excited to try it.

Here are the two shadows, opened. Be My Anchor is sheer, but buildable, and is gorgeous over primer. Sailing Away is a great creamy texture and I think it will be perfect worn alone or as a base!

Be My Anchor swatched on bare skin (top) and on primer (bottom). Sailing Away on bare skin.

Closeup of Be My Anchor. Look at the watery blue!!

Closeup of Sailing gorgeous.

Here is the balm applied lightly with a brush on bare lips. It has a nice tint to it and feels good on the lips! I wish my tube weren't broken, I would probably use it often!

Overall, I am super happy with this month's OTM. As always, the colors are gorgeous and the formulas are good. I already can't wait to see what February will bring...and here's a hint...the theme will be "Any excuse for chocolate". YES PLEASE!

Have you tried anything but GDE yet? What's your favorite indie sub?

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Solstice Scents - indie perfume oil review

Indie perfume oils are my current obsession. I can't get enough of them! They're so unique and interesting and I want to order ALL THE SAMPLES.

After looking through some of Solstice Scents' catalogue, I couldn't resist ordering a ton of samples. So many, I'm going to have to break them into a few posts! Solstice Scents offers whipped soaps, burnishing glace, body cream, and other items as well as perfume oils! I have only tried the perfumes so far (but I really want to try more, now.)

Today, I have a few samples each from the Manor and Foxcroft collections! I wish now that I'd gotten the entire collections, but I'm going to have to go back and get the rest of them.

All of the fragrances I ordered were sample vials, so they are all in the same packaging. I've included all but one of them in the photo (Maplewood Inn was in my bag), but all vials have a label with the name of the fragrance written on them.

First, I have 3 scents from the Manor Collection. The Manor Collection was created as an addition to the 2012 autumn collection, and is now part of the permanent line.  It's a series of scents inspired by a big, old manor. There are three more scents in this collection I need to try!

Cellar - This is described as "Damp Earth and Stone, Wooden Casks, Cool Fall Air, Crisp Apple, Pear and Broom Corn". I ordered this one out of sheer curiosity. I wasn't sure how I'd feel about smelling like a cellar, and I was a little wary of the damp earth and stone notes. However, this ended up being my favorite scent of the bunch! It is seriously amazing. On first sniff, it is all cold wet earth, stone, and very fresh, real red apples. It is a true, realistic apple scent, and not at all that synthetic and overly sweet type of apple scent that I avoid. It smells exactly like walking into the giant storage room at my local orchard! After it's been on for a while, the hay and wood notes come out a bit. This is a perfect fall scent if you don't want to smell like pumpkin spice. I am in love with this scent and intend to get a larger bottle of it when it is available. I'd also really like to try this one as a whipped soap.

Kitchen - This is described as "Pumpkin, Sugar Cookies, Peach Preserves, Spice Breads, Danishes, Caramel, Vanilla & Sweet Wood Smoke." I drooled over this one for quite a while before I finally went for it. And I'm not disappointed! When first applied, it reminds me of warm pumpkin snickerdoodles, with a bit of caramel. It is sweet and warm and delicious! As it wears, the spice breads peak out, and the wood smoke appears at the end. It is a sweet, subtle smoke and it doesn't overpower. I have to be careful with scents that have spice notes - my body chemistry loves to amp up those notes until they overtake all of the other notes. This one stays balanced, even on my skin. I want my kitchen to smell like this, and this is another I want a larger size of.

Library - This is described as "Leather Bound Books, A Carved Rosewood Mantle, Dying Fireplace Embers, Wood Wainscoting, Cedar Shelving and Aged Paper." Honestly, this is the scent that got me to try Solstice Scents. I LOVE LIBRARIES. I love books and everything about them, and there is nothing I can think of that sounds nicer than smelling like a library. And somehow, they managed to make that a reality! This scent is amazing - it's rich, dark, woodsy, smells just like a room full of old, dusty, leatherbound books. It's a bit mysterious and masculine and evocative, in a really nice way.  This is something I want to wear when I'm spending a gloomy day at home, reading. I'm impressed with it!

Next, I have four from the Foxcroft Collection. Foxcroft is a fictional town created by Solstice Scents. The collection is intended to evoke the atmosphere of the quaint little town. So neat! I need to grab the other two in this collection, as well. 

Maplewood Inn - This is described as "Maple, Woods, Amber, Benzoin, A Roaring Fire & A Hot Cup of Frothy Vanilla Chai".  It is a warm and smoky scent! It starts out with the sweet and spicy vanilla chai and woods with a swirl of smoke, and slowly dries down to more subtle woods and maple. It is a very autumnal scent and very different from my usual type of scents. It is a very well done smoky fragrance and it reminds me of a cool morning in a cabin in the woods. 

Blackburn's Parlor - This is described as "Vanilla Waffle Bowl, Vanilla & Chocolate Ice Creams, Sliced Bananas Smothered In Caramel Sauce & Topped With Whipped Cream." This scent is AMAZING! It smells, to me, exactly like a banana split. It starts out with the ice creams (you really can smell both vanilla and chocolate) and sliced bananas (the bananas do somehow smell SLICED). As the banana fades a bit, the caramel comes out. The scent dries down to the vanilla waffle bowl. It is a very well done sweet, foody scent. I definitely need a larger bottle of this.

Maine Moon - This is described as "Crisp Fall Air, Wood Smoke, Leather Seats & Concessions of Root Beer, Popcorn & Chocolate Covered Caramels." This is a very unique scent, reminiscent of a date to a drive-in movie!  It starts out with a burst of root beer and popcorn, which is admittedly a strange combination.  After a few moments, a really nice milk chocolate scent comes through with a bit of smoke. As it dries down, the leather note appears and it ends in leather and smoke. It's a super evocative scent, and probably not one I need a full size of, but wearing it is a fun experience.

Sycamore Sugarworks - This is described as "Caramelized Pear Tarts, Banana Apple Muffins, Spice Cakes With Rum Glaze, Cream Puffs & Maple Walnut Pastries." This is a pure, sweet bakery smell. On me, it is primarily banana apple muffins and spice cakes. The banana note is very much a banana bread smell, rather than the fresh banana of Blackburn's Parlor. This one stays sweet and muffinlike on me throughout wear. Hints of things like the rum glaze and maple walnut peek out at various points during wear, but the muffins never really fade. This is a super sweet, but really delicious scent. I would like to try this in a body cream!

Overall, I am really pleased and excited by my first experience with Solstice Scents. The fragrances are really unique, and I love that wearing them is an experience in and of itself. I have more samples to share in the near future, and I'm just as happy with those. I definitely recommend trying them if you're into unique scents - they do gourmands especially well.

Have you tried Solstice Scents? What fragrances have you been wearing lately?

I purchased these products with my own money and was not compensated for this review.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Birchbox - January 2015 - Unboxing


I am excited about this weather for one reason only - school was cancelled today, and thus, no work for me. So, not only am I having a lazy pampering day in my pajamas...but my Birchbox showed up, too!

This month, I chose one of the curated boxes - the Relax & Recharge box. It's supposed to be products to help you relax and take time for yourself, which I think is really important, post holidays.

I kind of forgot what the contents were by the time that it arrived, so it was pretty much a surprise anyway!
But here's what was inside.

Briogeo Don't Despair! Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask - This is a hydrating mask for the hair. I've sampled this before and I liked it! My hair gets so dry in winter, this is very welcome. The pot is big enough for 2-3 uses for me.

Manna Kadar Lip Locked in All of Me-  This is a all-in-one lip primer, stain, and gloss. I got this in the shade Lucky last month, and I reall y liked's a good light texture. This one is a bit of a darker shade, a mauvey color, and it's super pretty.

Perlier Intensive Nurturing Body Balm in Shea Lavender -  This is a thick cream to smooth and soften. I don't love the scent (I'm picky about lavender) BUT it will be really great for my hands, feet, and elbows.

When Travelmate Sheet Mask -  This is a soothing, nourishing mask meant to give a healthy glow. I really love sheet masks! However, these When masks are terribly overpriced (the set equals out to $14 a piece) so unless it works major wonders, I won't be buying any. But I'm excited to try it out!

Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream -  This is a multi-tasking eye cream that battles wrinkles and dark circles. This is probably why I chose the box. I LOVE EYE CREAMS. It's a good size, too. happy to be trying this!

Tea Pigs tea temples - I love tea. It's one of my favorite extras. Birchbox, please send me tea ALWAYS.

I'm pretty happy with this box! I will use's good sizes, and great for post-holiday rejuvenating.

If you haven't tried Birchbox yet and want to, feel free to sign up using my referral link!

What was in your box this month?

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Aromaleigh Ephemera - January 2014 Review and Unboxing

Lately, I've been really excited about indie subscription services - and in fact, indie makeup in general. I started thinking about how much money I was spending on beauty products put out by big corporations, and how much better I'd feel about supporting small businesses run by people doing what they love. Luckily, there are more and more companies making this transition possible!

Aromaleigh has been around for 16 years now. They are a small company out of South Carolina making vegan, cruelty free cosmetics. They make beautiful collections inspired by history, mythology, feminism, literature, science, classical music, astronomy, botany...basically, all of the things I care about! They also support Autism Acceptance organizations, having an owner with autism, and that is a very important cause for me. They are truly a great company!

January marks a new chapter for them - their first subscription box! I scrambled to sign up when they were made available, and I received it yesterday.  The box is $17.99 including shipping, and will be monthly. I am really impressed with the quality and thought that went into this box!

The shipping was super fast - she mailed it out on Friday, and I received it on Monday! It was packed in a bubble mailer, and it arrived in perfect condition.

I was really excited to open the mailer and find this adorable little box! The pretty sticker and ribbon make it feel like opening a present! I love that the box itself is marked with the month - it will make organization easy.

Opening it, I found the prettiest info sheet I've ever seen in a sub. It explains the theme, which is based on The White Witch from "The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe" in a really beautiful way. It also describes the items themselves. I really, really love the way she did the info sheet...reading it was a really nice part of the experience and felt more special than a simple list of items.

Underneath the sheet, you find all of the goodies. As you can see, she packed a lot into this little box! The turkish taffy was a really nice touch, and I kind of ate them while unboxing everything. In the box, she included two face products, two shadows (in adorable mini sizes), a sample of an upcoming blush, and samples from two other companies. 

Locusta is a blush sample from an upcoming expansion to the Ignis Antiquita collection.  It's a pretty coral color and I'll definitely have to check out the rest of the existing collection, as well as the upcoming expansion. I haven't tried this on my face yet, but will report back when I do!

We got two samples from other indie brands. 

The first is a lip product from Dreamworld Hermetica. They are a new company for me and I was pretty happy to see something from them in here! This product is called "Ectoplasmic Lips" in the shade "Wytch's Heart", and it is not listed on their website (which is currently closed to orders as they add new products) so I think this is one of their new products. It's really interesting - the texture is somewhere between a lipstick and a gloss. It goes on shiny and shimmery and a bit sheer. It looks kind of scary bronze in the tub, but looks really gorgeous on the lips. I've included it in the look I did at the end of this post.

The second is a perfume sample from Ten Three Labs. This is a company I've been wanting to try, and indie perfumes are my current new passion! This sample is "Superstition's Willing Victim" and it is described as bay rum, peppermint, tea, lime, coconut, and sugarcane. I really like this! When I opened it to sniff it, I thought that it smelled a bit like a rum and coke with peppermint, and when I read the notes, I was surprised how spot on my first impression was! It's a really unique scent, and not one I probably would have chosen on my own, but am so glad that I got to try it. I am definitely interested in trying more scents from this company.

And now, the main products. As I mentioned we got two face products and two shadows. I really love the labels and the fact that the name of each product is on the top! I always find it hard to photograph products in sifter jars, so I've posted the descriptions of each product and some swatches of each!

I find the descriptions of each to be spot on...and yes, they are as beautiful as they sound!

Here is each product swatched in order, on bare skin, in artificial light in my bedroom. As with all products like this, the shimmer doesn't show in photos as much as you'd like, but it's all sparkly and gorgeous. 

And here are the products in natural light. They are nicely pigmented and have a great texture. The gold sheen in the White Witch is truly gorgeous and I wish photographs picked it up better!

Here's a quick look I did using all of the products except for the blush sample. Everything was really easy to work with and wears absolutely beautifully!

Overall, I am loving this box. The products are so beautiful and well thought out and the quality is amazing. I'm so glad I signed up for Ephemera, and I think this has the potential to become my favorite sub!

Have you tried any indie subs yet? Would you?

I purchased all items mentioned myself and was not compensated for this review.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Blog name change!

Years overdue, the blog is finally getting a new name! "I Sold The World" will now be called "Clumsy Chromaticity"!

I'm excited for more changes coming up!