Unboxing May 2016 Sephora Play!

Looks like a lot of people are now off the wait list for Sephora’s Play! subscription box so I think some of the changes this month was due to a greater number of subscribers.  This month’s Sephora Play! theme is “The Forces of Nature“, focusing on products that are natural, organic and/or antioxidant rich  ~ beauty products that are good for your skin and hair!

What is Sephora Play!?  Play! is a monthly subscription box that is $10.00 a month + any taxes and it looks like your subscription will be counted towards your Beauty Insider points as well

What will be in Play!  A monthly box of deluxe samples, along with an exclusive PLAY! BOOK — packed with helpful advice — and a PLAY! PASS to redeem in store for a free one-on-one learning session with a beauty expert. The six product samples in your PLAY! by SEPHORA box are from the same prestige brands we carry in store and online, and they are sized to use multiple times.  For a limited time, show your current PLAY! PASS when purchasing items in store to receive 50 bonus points each month.

Click here to sign up now

09 May 2016: The Forces of Nature

A few changes with the packaging this month ~ the outer box is much more sturdier than before ~ the previous boxes had a thinner outer box as there was another box inside that one.  

There is no inner box ~ but a really cute cotton printed drawstring pouch!   And the 50-page (okay, I am exaggerating, but man, it was a pain to take photos, edit and crop all of those pages) brochure has been replaced with a flyer that is folded up.  You still get the Sephora Play! card, redeemable for 50 Beauty Insider points at your local Sephora.  I will say I like the packaging changes ~ it is less wasteful ~ the box within a box and the crinkles were just tossed in the recycle bin and so was that huge honking pamphlet that was also stapled! So I am glad that Sephora is going the more eco-friendly route here, and the pouch is adorable! I love these pouches as I do store odds and ends in them.

Box Revealed!

Informational Card


tarte Tarteist Lip Crayon in Latergram  The official description is calling this a mauve shade, but I find it to be more of nice neutral shade ~ reminds me a lot of Mac Spice lip liner, a dark coral.  This is a mini and I wish it was full size because I love the color!  This sample is soft and dry ~  the sample is so skinny that if I press too hard, it will break under pressure. They should have made the sample thick and squat, not tall and skinny.  I do love how you get a satisfying “click” when you twist the base to get more product ~ BUT word of warning ~ you can only go up, you cannot go twist down!! So don’t click it too far up as it will be stuck there.  I managed to use this on my lips by twisting up a small amount of product and then keeping the pencil on a sharp diagonal, I “feather” touched it into my lips ~ but it was time consuming  and when I have a lip pencil, I should be able to swipe it across my lips and be done with it!  I love the shade, however and will check it out at Sephora, but the packaging on this is a Tarte fail.  They need to rethink it.  BTW ~ If you want to pair this with the matching Matte Lip Paint, select shade Tbt. Sample Size .001 oz  RV $1.80

Description:   A two-in-one lip liner that helps prime and line lips for a perfectly-contoured look. Line on unique lip looks with tarte’s twist-up, precise, tarteist™ Lip Crayon. This versatile lip crayon helps you to easily get vibrant lips with its creamy, easy-glide formula that imparts rich, hydrating pigment in just one swipe. Featuring an automatic twist-up tool, its crisp, tapered tip to help contour and accentuate your natural lip line, leaving you primed and coated with lip-loving™ ingredients while preventing feathering. Finish off with an expertly-coordinating shade of the tarteist lip paint (sold separately) to complete the look.  Made without parabens and phthalates.  Vitamin E: Acts as an emollient and antioxidant.  Mineral Pigments: Soothe and soften skin.

Ingredients: C11-12 Isoparaffin, Isododecane, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Polyethylene, Polyglyceryl-3 Stearate, Phenyl Trimethicone, Beheneth-5, Microcrystalline Wax/Cera Microcrstallina/Cire Microcrystalline, Paraffin, Mica, Lecithin, Polyglyceryl-3 Palmitate, Tocopherol, Silica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, 77499), Red 7 Lake (CI 15850), Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163).

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Kimchi  Sephora describes this as “Shocking Pink” and yeah, they got that RIGHT.  WOW. This is a bright bright neon shade of pink in a matte formula. I love Amuse Bouche lipsticks and own several already, but this is not a color I would have picked for me.  I did try it on my lips, but I looked like a clown ~ it might work for many people, but I didn’t care for it at all.  I was so disgusted, I used my fingers to swipe the lipstick off and discovered something…  This is very pigmented, very long wearing and it stains my fingers… in a beautiful pink shade.

I looked at my lips and the bright clown shade was now muted to this still bright pink, but much more wearable color.   I then dabbed a bit on my cheeks and blended it out ~ wow ~ an instant face brightener!!  So, I have found that if I apply the lipstick and then blot most of it away, I get a lovely pink stain on my lips.  I can use this as a blush too.  If this shade is too much for you, try it this way!  I was pleasantly surprised how wearable this shade is once it is muted down to a stain.   It is a very creamy and easy to apply lipstick, very moisturizing with its slew of oils and butters ~ shea butter, castor, jojoba, sesame, sunflower, argan, grapeseed, olive, coconut, sweet almond, apricot, avocado and  pomegranate oils.  Amuse Bouche lipsticks also have a sweet citrus taste to them.  It contains 5mg resveratrol, which is made from grapes and is an antioxidant, so this lippie will help protect your lips with a great anti-aging ingredient.  Mini Size . 05 oz  RV $8.67

Description:   With its sole focus on lips, Bite Beauty proves you don’t have to sacrifice performance for a product made from nature. Their lip products are created with natural and food-grade ingredients for beauty that’s better for you. They do not contain petrochemicals, parabens, sulfates and are certified gluten-free.   Swipe on bold, creamy lip color with Bite Beauty’s Amuse Bouche. Created and crafted by hand, Bite’s small batch, low-heat process preserves a balanced blend of lip-quenching nutrients, vitamins, and omega oils that are essential for achieving healthy-looking lips. Made with 12 edible oils and triple milled pigments, this lipstick provides saturated lip color with weightless coverage and a citrus flavor made from fresh pressed fruit. 

Ingredients: Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil**, Glyceryl Rosinate*, Cera Alba (Beeswax)**, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil**, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter**, Triisostearyl Citrate*, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil**, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax*, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil*, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil**, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax**, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Cera (Wax)*, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Hydrogenated Castor Oil*, Flavor (Aroma), Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Wax*, Acacia Decurrens Flower Wax*, Polyglyceryin-3*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil**, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract**, Silk Powder*, Pearl Powder*, Glyceryl Oleate*, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables*, Trans-Resveratrol*, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil**, Almond (Prunus Dulcis) Oil**, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil**, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil**, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil**, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil**, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil**, Siraitia Grosvenorii (Monk Fruit) Extract*. +/- May Contain: Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891)*, Iron Oxides (Ci 77491, Ci 77492, Ci 77499)*, Carmine (Ci 75470)*, Blue 1 Lake (Ci 42090), Yellow 5 Lake (Ci 19140), Yellow 6 Lake (Ci 15985), Red 40 Lake (Ci 16035), Red 6 Lake (Ci 15850), Red 7 Lake (Ci 15850), Red 27 Lake (Ci 45410), Red 28 Lake (Ci 45410), Red 30 Lake (Ci 73360), Red 33 Lake (Ci 17200), Manganese Violet (Ci 77742)*.



Atelier Cologne Orange Sanguine  I own this scent already ~ for a couple of years now ~ and I love it!  This is a spicy, yet sharp, zesty orange scented perfume ~ it is not sweet or cloying but more on the  bitter side, just like fresh orange peel.   I like to layer it with  Atelier’s Vanille Insensée Cologne and it becomes like a nice orange creamsicle.  This is also a great unisex perfume as well.  I know that Atelier’s French-made perfumes are expensive, but they sell their collections in deluxe spray sizes in tins ~ of which I own a couple ~ as well as the Orange & Vanilla layering duo in a deluxe perfume size at Sephora.  Since a little of this perfume goes a long way, these will last a long time ~ these scents are more on the sharp side, but there is something so damn addicting to them.  On a side note, I love getting this mini samples sizes from Atelier as they always come with a beautifully photographed postcard with the description of the perfume on the back.   Sample Size .04 oz (??) RV $2.80

Description: Orange Sanguine, a zesty and energizing burst of crushed ripe fruit, plays off sweet blood orange juice against bitter orange peel and sensual notes of geranium. Complete with a handcrafted leather cap and a removable pump that allows for splash or spray use, this cologne brings to mind relaxed mornings, sunrises, and soft sea breezes.  “It was the kind of moment you would want to revisit. Everyone was here, gathered on the terrace for breakfast, and the scent of fresh oranges was diffusing in the yellow heat. A symphony of their laughter and waves hitting the cliffs played in the air.”

Notes: Blood Orange, Bitter Orange, Jasmine, Geranium, Amber Woods, Tonka Beans, Sandalwood.   Style: Zesty. Energizing. Playful.


Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask   Haha ~ I just got a sample of this in my May Birchbox!!  It is fine, as I like this mask ~ but I will repeat my original mini review here (as I am lazy!!)  I do color my hair quite often, whether it is a full all over head of hair or just root touch-ups, and I find these deep conditioning masks to be very helpful.  I normally dislike getting one as a sample, but I have used Briogeo’s Deep Conditioning Mask before and I love the scent ~ it reminds me of New Hampshire, because it smells similar to maple syrup!   This mask works to help soften and condition my hair after I use dyes and I do need to leave it on for more than 5 minutes.  Prepare to keep it on for 20 minutes and for extra care, put on a plastic cap over your hair during these 20 minutes.  This one ounce sample is good for a couple of treatments ~ I have slightly longer than chin length hair.  If you have really dry or coarse hair ~ for the record, my hair is fine and oily ~ this might not be moisturizing enough for you.  For my hair type, it works quite well.   Deluxe Size 1 0z RV $4.25

Description:  An intensive weekly treatment to restore essential hydration and enhance hair’s resilience to protect against future damage. This Deep Conditioning Mask works in minutes to restore essential hydration and natural vibrancy to dry, brittle, over-processed, and otherwise lackluster hair. Formulated with Briogeo’s unique NOVA Complex, this mask delivers an optimal blend of transformative nutrients from B-vitamins, rosehip and argan oils, algae, and biotin to replenish damaged hair to a shiny, healthy-looking, and lustrous state. This formula is made without parabens, silicones, or phthalates.  The formula is free of silicones, DEA, and artificial dyes. It is also cruelty-free and is color-safe and safe for use on chemically-treated, relaxed, and keratin-treated hair.

  • Rosehip Oil: Provides essential fatty acids which are crucial in maintaining hair hydration and controlling frizz.
  • Algae Extract: Provides minerals, amino acids, antioxidants, and vitamins to nourish and strengthen hair and protect the scalp from free radical damage.
  • B-vitamins: Improve the texture of the hair and add body and sheen. Also restores nourishment to hair damaged by heat or chemical treatments.
  • Almond Oil: Enhances the shine and luster of dry or weak hair and smooths the cuticle to prevent frizz and lock in moisture.

Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Stearyl Alcohol*, Cetyl Alcohol*, Brassicyl Isoleucinate Esylate*, Propanediol*, Brassica Alcohol*, Isopropyl Myristate*, Panthenol, Biotin, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Algae Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice*, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Laurus Nobilis Leaf Extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Cetrimonium Chloride*, Cetyl Esters*, Glycerin*, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Oil, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Peel Oil, Citrus Tangerina (Tangerine) Peel Oil, Santalum Album (Sandalwood) Oil, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Isododecane, Fragrance (Parfum)**, Benzyl Alcohol, Dehydroacetic Acid    Coconut, vegetable, or plant derived ** Derived from natural essential oils and made without petrochemical or inorganic material   cosDNA.com analysis


Origins Maskimizer Skin-Optimizing Mask Primer So, there is actually 3 samples here, but the focus is on the mask primer, which looks to be a brand new item from Origins.  The idea is to spritz this on your clean face before applying a wash off mask product.  It is supposed to act as a primer and will help prep your skin to better apply the mask on your face (smoother application) and also help get the maximum benefits of the mask.  huh.  Not sure I buy all of this, but they do have several ingredients that they call “Marine Algae Complex” and I do know that seaweed is full of antioxidants and is very  hydrating.  The worst thing that can happen that this spray just hydrates my skin, right?  I will give a try.  They also included 2 foil packets of their most popular wash off masks, which I think is really thoughtful and a great promotion ~ I mean, you have a mask primer, you need masks, right?  The two included are Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask To Clear Pores and Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask.  I’ve tried the Clear Improvement one in the past and I do like it ~ I have not tried their sleeping mask yet and I guess I won’t be as it contains rose water!   Sample Sizes:  Mask Primer .05 oz RV 34 cents  ~ Clear Improvement Mask .1 oz RV $1.20  ~ Drink Up Mask .1 oz RV $1.20

Description Maskimizer Skin-Optimizing Mask Primer:  preps, primes, and optimizes skin for mask to follow. It improves spreadability and rinseability of masks while hydrating, soothing, and boosting skin’s radiance immediately. Great for use with every type of mask except peel-off, it softens skin and boosts hydration levels. Made without parabens, sulfates and phthalates

Ingredients Maskimize Skin-Optimizing Mask Primer: water, butylene glycol, glycerin, ectoin, gelidiela acerosa (algae) extract, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, chamomilla recutita (maticaria) extract, hypnea musciformis (algae) extract,  chamomilla recutita (maticaria) flower essential oil, scucumis sativus (cucumber) fruit extract, caffeine, trehalose, sodium PCA, urea, tocopheryl acetate, panthenol, sodium hyaluronate, PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil,PPG-26-buteth-26, caprylyl glycol, polyquaternium05, hexylene glycol, disodium EDTA, phenoxyethanol cosDNA.com analysis

Description Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask:  A charcoal mask that draws out deep-dwelling pore-cloggers. Nature’s complexion clean-up crew clears the way for skin to act its best. Bamboo Charcoal acts like a magnet to draw out pore-cloggers, white China clay absorbs environmental toxins, and lecithin dissolves impurities. It helps flush out environmental toxins, dirt, and debris that can clog pores and cause skin to look overcast—leaving the complexion clarified and refreshed.  Active Charcoal: Absorbs 100- to 200-times its weight in impurities.  White China Clay: One of the gentlest and most effective clays, it draws out impurities and toxins while clearing the skin of excess oil, dirt, pollutants, and other waste materials. Made without parabens, sulfates and phthalates

Ingredients Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask: water, myrtus communis (myrtle) leaf water, kaolin, bentonite, butylene glycol, montmorillonite, polysorbate 20, PEG-100 stearate,  charcoal powder, xanthan gum, lecithin, PEG-150 distearate, propylene glycol stearate, sorbitan laurate, glycerin, propylene glycol laurate, simethicone, caprylyl glycol, ethylhexylglycerin,  hexylene glycol, trisodium EDTA, dehyroacetic acid, phenoxyethanol   cosDNA.com analysis

Description Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask:  A luxurious nighttime mask to quench skin’s thirst.  Skin depends on water for its youthful functioning. But all day long, skin loses vital moisture and the busier you are, the more it loses. This intense moisture replacement mask with avocado and apricot kernel oil deeply and instantly quenches compromised moisture reserves and builds a reservoir for tomorrow. Best for dry skin types, Japanese seaweed repairs skin’s barrier to prevent future dehydration and signs of premature aging. Made without parabens, sulfates and phthalates

Ingredients Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask: Water, Rosa Damascena (Rose) Flower Water, Myrtus Communis (Myrtle) Leaf Water, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Bitter Orange) Flower Water, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile) Flower Water, Glycerin, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Dimethicone, PEG-75, PEG-8, Glycereth-26, Sorbitan Stearate, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Bitter Orange) Flower Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Amara (Bitter Almond) Kernel Oil, Rosa Damascena (Rose) Flower Oil, Cinnamomum Camphora (Shiu/Camphore Leaf) Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Sweet Orange) Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Osmanthus Fragrans (Osmantus Absolute) Flower Extract, Ribes Nigrum (Blackcurrant) Seed Extract, Linalool, Limonene, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Cladosiphon Okamuranus Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat Bran) Extract, PEG-100 Stearate, Sucrose, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Wax, Panthenol, Pantethine, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Butylene Glycol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Sterols, Tocopheryl Acetate, Oryzanol, Bisabolol, Caprylyl Glycol, Caffeine, Hexylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Dextrin, Potassium Carbomer, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Phenoxyethanol cosDNA.com analysis


Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial  I actually do not have issues with rosehip oil or dog rose extracts, but based on the reviews, it sounds like this does have a STRONG scent of rose, so I will not use it (allergies).   My rose issues stem mainly from Rosa Damascena and also rose scents.  I wish they would have included their new Golden Krocus Saffron serum ~ that would have been fantastic!  Maybe in a future box.  Since I cannot use this, I will just say that I have used Korres products before and this is a really nice brand to try  ~ “With roots in the oldest homeopathic pharmacy in Athens, Greece, Korres is committed to developing natural skincare, color, and body products that provide maximum results. Their formulations are among the most environmentally friendly and skin compatible available today, utilizing active natural extracts with antioxidant and skin-transforming benefits for clinically proven results”    Sample Size  .34 oz   RV $12.67

Description: This overnight Wild Rose facial-in-a-jar is a breakthrough in beauty sleep. More than a mask, more than a night cream, it contains a generous dose of wild rose oil, boosted with super C for powerful brightening and anti aging. At the same time, imperata cylindrica extract time releases moisture throughout the night for continuous hydration. This product’s weightless, whipped texture melts instantly into skin and works while you sleep to re-texturize and address visible signs of premature aging. Day after day, week after week, uneven tone and dark spots will continuously improve. In as little as 14 days you’ll see skin that’s brighter, more even-toned, and exceptionally radiant.

  • Wild Rose Oil: Evens skintone and repairs fine lines; moisturizes, heals, and softens skin while forming a protective layer to improve its texture.
  • Super C: A stabilized fat soluble vitamin C with 10 times higher vitamin C absorption for powerful brightening, natural collagen synthesis, and antioxidant protection.
  • Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract: Provides continuous moisturization by regulating the moistureequilibrium of the skin.
  • Rose Water 15%: Provides weightless hydration.

Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Alcohol Denat., Triheptanoin, Behenyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Isodecyl Neopentanoate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Cera Alba/Beeswax/Cire D’abeille, Lecithin, Imperata Cylindrica Root Extract, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower Seed Wax/Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate, Benzyl Alcohol, Benzyl Benzoate, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Caprylyl Glycol, Carbomer, Cetearyl Alcohol, Citronellol, Distarch Phosphate, Eugenol, Fragrance, Galactoarabinan, Geraniol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols, Hexyl Cinnamal, Hydrolyzed Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Phenoxyethanol, Rosa Canina Fruit Extract, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Rosa Rubiginosa Seed Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Sodium Gluceptate, Sodium Hydroxide, Tetrahydrodiferuloylmethane, Tocopheryl Acetate, Xanthan Gum cosDNA.com analysis


This month was not that great for me ~ last month was a winner and this month, meh.  I did enjoy the lip products even with the shocking neon Kimchi pink and the dismal tarte packaging problem.  Two repeat favorites with the perfume and hair mask, the Origins sampler is okay and I cannot use the Korres product, which was the most expensive item in the bunch.  I hope that next month is better ~ I mean, these are all solid products but I wasn’t wow’d by this month, unlike last month.  I do like the packaging changes overall with their boxes and replacing the box with the pouch and a smaller pamphlet ~ hopefully, they will continue this.   I paid $10.00 + sales tax (so it was still under $10.50 or something like that) and I received a RV of almost $33.00.  These boxes do contribute to Sephora’s points system, so every month, an additional 10 points, plus there is always a 50 point card in each box ~ just go down to a Sephora store and redeem.   I am going to try the Tarte lipliner in the store to see if it performs better than the sample, as the color is so pretty.

Did you get this month’s Sephora Play! Box?  What did you think of it and what was your favorite item?

 [ descriptions in italics from sephora’s product page ]

[ this blog post contains affiliate links ]

2 thoughts on “Unboxing May 2016 Sephora Play!

  1. This month’s was my first Play! box. I like the color of the Amuse Bouche lipstick after I blot it a little bit. I also have to leave the hair mask on for 15-20 minutes to see results. I can’t try the Korres product for the same reason. I haven’t tried out the remaining products yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anna, Try it the bite beauty as a blush too ~ it really is nice blended out. The tarte is a beautiful color, but that sample packaging & texture ~ it is awful. I need to get down to my local sephora and try it out in person with the full sized item and see if it performs better.


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