Play! by Sephora: March Review

Monthly subscription boxes are the hottest new trend to treat yo’ self. In addition to just the pure excitement of receiving mail, there’s also the aspect of literally opening a package of surprises catered to your tastes. The idea of sending deluxe beauty/cosmetic samples for a low monthly fee, first came from Birchbox in 2010 and was later revolutionized by ipsy. Sephora hopped on this train at the end of 2015 and was apparently so well received that they have a wait list at times to subscribe to the box. Being thrifty, I’ve always been skeptical that the samples you receive in these monthly boxes will actually be valued for the $10 price, or that the samples will simply be disappointing. However, I felt compelled to try Play! by Sephora since I regularly shop at Sephora and am a fan of their brands which are more high-end than drugstore names, like Kat Von D Cosmetics, tarte, Make Up Forever, Anastasia Beverly Hills and so on.  

I received my first box the other day, so let’s take a look at what’s inside!


March’s box focused on all things glowing, gleaming, and bright. Having glimmering cheeks like the sparkling light blue waters of a tropical beach is the latest trend. Everyone on Instagram has been sporting shimmering highlighted faces in the sun.

The samples were neatly packed in cute ribbon tie pouch that reads, “Glow Your Own Way”.

The items are:

  • A card for 50 bonus Beauty Insider points with purchase (this is standard with every box)
  • GlamGlow- Glowstarter Mega Illuminating Moisturizer in Nude Glow- This is a two in one moisturizer that doubles as a highlighter. It’s creamy, sparkly, and smells super sweet like a dessert yogurt drink!
  • Benefit Cosmetic- Watt’s Up!– This is a highlighter stick that glides on smoothly and provides a more natural shine. Benefit Cosmetic’s products are of really good quality, but I’ve personally received the same Watt’s Up sample so many times I couldn’t be excited for it. Despite all the times I had it, I’ve actually only gotten close to buying the full size. Still didn’t do it though. I think for me, the pigment isn’t dramatic enough for the price.
  • Algenist- REVEAL Concentrated Luminizing Drops in Pearl- This sample was the one I was most excited for! They are pure concentrated liquid drops of a creamy white pearl highlighter. You squeeze them out in a eyedropper bottle and it looks like a tiny gleaming pearl falls onto your skin. This color is more of a brighter white-cream shade than the other samples, but is so vibrant and pigmented.
  • Make Up Forever- Artist Shadow in I-544– I wasn’t excited when I saw this but it grew on me. It’s an eyeshadow that looks like a very dark bronze to the eye, but when applied it actually has very subtle whispers of pink. They call it a “pink granite” color but to me it’s more of a bronze gold dust with very slight hints of pink which results in a dusty purple. I have applied it in the picture below. 
  • Living Proof- Full Dry Volume Blast– Travel sized spray can to provide hair some life with volume and texture! I haven’t tried this yet but I’ve heard great things about Living Proof.
  • Atelier Cologne- Clementine California– There’s a post card and tiny cologne sample that’s more for smelling than actual use. It’s a very heavy citrus aroma with floral tones. I think they were going for a sunny Californian day, which I can totally imagine. It reminds me of a countryside highway besides an orange farm and a field of poppies!

I’m wearing the Make Up Forever & Algenist samples!

My verdict? The box was definitely worth $10 and the products were carefully and thoughtfully  picked! I’m excited to receive April’s box which I hope is a beautiful Spring themed box.

Here’s What Happened at a VIB Rouge Event


Today I was lucky enough to attend a VIB Rouge event! For those of you unfamiliar with the term, it’s the top tier of Sephora’s rewards program. Admittedly, I spend way too much of my paychecks on beauty products and believe me, everyone loves teasing me about it. I’ve never had perfect skin. I’m very sensitive and prone to breakouts. I have adult acne and cystic acne every so often, (and I thought I could say goodbye to pimples when I tossed my fingerless gloves away years ago) so I end up having to buy pricier skincare regimens.

I had never been to an exclusive VIB Rouge event before. It was a before store hours private shopping session / new fall line preview and I wasn’t really expecting much. If anything, I was going to get a free makeup bag for attending, so why not?

Here’s what normally happens at Sephora:

  • It’s PACKED.
  • All the beauty advisors are so busy they zip past you. Unless you open their drawers– then they get pissed and finally ask you if you need help. (This happens to me a lot.)
  • The checkout line is modeled after Disneyland rides.


Here’s what happened at the Rouge event (Note: I had no makeup on and was wearing my gym clothes):

  • Since it was an RSVP event and before store hours… it was EMPTY! There was more employees than customers. No waiting for anyone to finish swatching so you could move in.
  • A million employees complimented me and asked me if I needed help or wanted to try anything.
  • They also kept offering me free food!! A beauty specialist even poured me coffee and put cream and sugar in it for me.
  • Essentially, rock star treatment.

Yay for free stuff!

In conclusion, I got a major ego boost and a beauty advisor helped me find a new moisturizer!