Thursday, 22 January 2015

Memebox Skinfood Box Review

Skinfood is a very popular Korean brand most well known for its line of, well, food-based items. Quite popular are its sugar wash-off masks. As you can see, I received one in this Skinfood Memebox! How well do the other products stand up?

Box Overview
Box: Memebox (Referral link)
Price: Varies -- typically $20-$30 plus shipping
Ships to: United States, Canada, and several other countries -- check here
What's inside: Korean beauty products. Specifics for each box may be found on their website.
Coupon: use W9CV3Y for $3 off any $30+ order. Using my referral link, get $5 off any order of $100 or $10 off any order of $150 without a code! (Can be combined with coupon codes)

Facial Water Vita-C Cream Full size || Value: $10
Beneficial ingredients of note: acai extract , strawberry extract, raspberry extract, cranberry extract
Detrimental ingredients of note: ethanol (last ingredient)
I have moisturizers in every nook and cranny of my home. Needless to say, I haven't been able to crack this one open yet, but I hope to eventually. The ethanol isn't a huge deal to me because it's the last ingredient; I wouldn't be surprised if it was only included to help keep the ingredients together.

Tomato Whitening Toner Full size || Value: $11
Beneficial ingredients of note: tomato extract (second ingredient)
Detrimental ingredients of note: ethanol (third ingredient), fragrance (last ingredient)
Alright, here ethanol is a much bigger issue, being the third ingredient after tomato extract and water. Tomatoes are great for brightening the skin and for antioxidants, but I wouldn't put this near my face in a million years with all that ethanol. I put it up for trade. 

Black Sugar Mask Wash Off Full size || Value: $11
Beneficial ingredients of note: macademia seed oil, shea butter
Detrimental ingredients of note: fragrance (last ingredient)
This is a sugar scrub! It smells strongly of lemon and I wouldn't be surprised if the fragrance ingredient is lemon -- so be aware of that. I generally don't condone the use of sugar scrubs on the face because I'm worried about microtears of the skin. Personally I try to limit scrubs like this to once every month. Thus, I've only used this a few times. It's not bad, but it's no holy grail for me. I kind of wish I got the Strawberry mask, which apparently smells like jam! 

Egg White Pore Meringue Foam Full size || Value: $11
Beneficial ingredients of note: arginine, apple amino acids, some other amino acids
Detrimental ingredients of note: fragrance (last ingredient)
Thanks to an awesome person on Reddit, I learned that this cleanser -- which is otherwise great in terms of ingredients -- has an incredibly high pH of 8. Typically, one should keep the skin's pH below 7, around 4.5-5.5. This is especially true if you follow your cleansing routine with exfoliation by chemical means, which requires a low pH. Same for using vitamin C serums. Thus, I've since traded this item. It's huge! I'm sure they will get a lot of use out of it.

Choco Eyebrow Powder Cake Full size || Value: $6
This came in a black/brown colour and black/black colour, if I remember correctly. I got the black/black and I'm glad, since I have dark eyebrows. Brown works, but I think black works a little better now that I've tried this. I can't say it's good quality, though. The mirror is so heavy that you can't rest it on a surface without it falling over unless it's bent at less than a 90 degree angle. The brush is made almost entirely of plastic, including the bristles, which are tough and scratchy. It literally gouges holes in the powder when I attempt to use it. The powder itself is not very pigmented, as you can see in my swatch (two swipes each colour, no primer, artificial lighting). That could be a good thing, as it means the colour is buildable.

Altogether I received almost $50 of product from this box, which cost $36 after shipping. For a Memebox, this is a fairly low value, as most branded boxes are. I'm annoyed that two of the products are completely unsuitable for my skin (and I would argue most/all people), and that the eyebrow powder was very low quality -- though I'll still use it. If I had the option to go back in time, I'd tell myself not to buy this box, even though I don't think it's the worst thing ever.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Ipsy January 2015 Review

Box: Ipsy (Referral link)
Price: $10/month, $110/year; $4.95 shipping to Canada
Ships to: North America
What’s inside: Various beauty product samples and full size products, very roughly personalized

This month's bag is a tough tarp-like material, with blue on one side, white on the other, and an orange zipper. Sort of nautical -- I like it, but probably wouldn't take it out. 

Be Good. Good Day. Day Moisturizer 15g/0.5oz || Value: $11.75
Beneficial ingredients of note: aloe juice (second ingredient), cucumber fruit extract, sodium hyaluronate
Detrimental ingredients of note: some extracts which may be beneficial but may alternatively cause irritation -- maqui berry, licorice root, ginko leaf, grape seed, hickory bark
I haven't used this yet, since I have tons of moisturizer to attend to. The ingredients list looks good, though -- I love me some sodium hyaluronate, and aloe works very well with my skin. The bag design is a nice way to save on packaging materials, sort of combining the best of sample pouch (small size, ability to squeeze all contents out) with a normal container (sealable). 

MALIN + GOETZ Mojito Lip Balm 5.66g/0.20oz || Value: $6.85
Beneficial ingredients of note: several fatty acid polymers designed to condition the skin
Detrimental ingredients of note: fragrance (near end of list)
I'm not a huge fan of lip balms, and I've said it before -- despite now having plenty to choose from every day. It used to be that I hated the feeling of product on my lips, but now it's that nothing is able to keep my obnoxiously dry lips in check! I was about to throw this in the trading heap before taking a look at the ingredients list, which is strangely scarce of the usual coconut oil, vitamin E, and so on. The idea of a balm entirely made of lab-derived skin conditioners intrigued me, so I tried it out for a few days. This balm is a completely clear gel which is a bit more greasy than sticky. It goes on like a thick lip gloss with tons of sheen, with a very faint smell of lime. It feels pretty heavy on the lips for a while; after about half an hour it sinks in a touch but the lips are still slippery.

That said: it works. I would rate it as good as my beloved Epic Blend lip balms in terms of ability to keep my lips unchapped. Unfortunately, the lack of wearability really makes this difficult to recommend to anyone as a daytime balm. If you hate the stickiness of Vaseline, but need an intensive lip balm overnight, I could recommend this.

Hikari Cosmetics Mechanical Eye Liner in Storm (Slate Grey) Full size? || Value: $13?
I was excited when I saw this in my Glam Room (the online product information card, which can be accessed before receiving one's bag). I think a grey eyeliner would be super neat. But when it was in my hands, it immediately broke! What? The very top part, about 2cm long, just popped off completely -- I figure it must have been used in constructing the liner or something. It wasn't difficult to pop it back on, but not a good first impression. The entire liner is made of flimsy plastic which feels insubstantial in the hand -- very light. The black paint is also chipping off slightly. I thought from my arm swatch (see below) that the quality would make up for it... but let me tell you. This did not work on the eyes at all. For some reason there was zero pigmentation when I tried it out on my eyelid, and it dragged quite a bit. Super disappointed, would not recommend.

Manna Kadar Cosmetics Sheer Glo 7.65g/0.27oz || Value: $7.83
Beneficial ingredients of note: none
Detrimental ingredients of note: parfum (last ingredient)
I think this is supposed to be some sort of all over luminizer. Yellow-toned friends, run away. This is super pink. The formula itself is very lightweight (prone to flying out of the bottle with a single squeeze) and moisturizer-like in texture; it appears as a pinky brown colour with slight shimmer. I've actually found use for this as a blush, surprisingly enough. Underneath some light foundation it gives just enough rosiness on days I don't want to look like I'm wearing blush, you know?

Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow in Treasure 0.08oz || Estimated value: $3.50

A lot of people seemed to hate the Pacifica shadow duo from last May due to it's formula. Having compared it to some better quality shadows, I can see why they would think that (though I've gotten quite a bit of use from it on my natural makeup days). Luckily, this shadow has a much improved formula, perhaps benefiting from the coconut oil in the ingredients list. It's a nice bronzey, coppery colour which a lot of people have been calling gold -- but I disagree. What I do agree with is people saying it's too similar to the Be a Bombshell cream shadow we've gotten a few months ago. I'm not a huge fan of the BaB brand so I'm happy to have something else to use, instead. This shadow absolutely requires primer to be at it's... prime. (Sorry.)

Top to bottom: eyeshadow (left primer, right bare skin), Sheer Glo, eyeliner
Sorry about the blown out picture, y'all! The shadow appears more or less true to life. It has a nice pearly finish in the light. The swatch is one swipe with a finger. The Sheer Glo is somewhat rubbed into the skin as you would do on your face; you can see how pink it is on my skin. The eyeliner looks pigmented on the arm but as stated does not work on the lid due to how much it drags. It also appears more of a light-gray in real life.

Again, this is a month from Ipsy where I can't say I'm in love, but can't say I hate it to the point of unsubscribing. I'm hypothetically able and would like to use all five of these products, but the eyeliner was such terrible quality that I don't think it will ever be picked up again. I did enjoy the shadow and balm, and the Sheer Glo will be just fine the way I've repurposed it. The moisturizer will also be used if patch testing goes well. Another month, another Ipsy, another "eh, decent enough" reaction.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Memebox Jewel Tones Colorbox Review

Box Overview
Box: Memebox (Referral link)
Price: Varies -- typically $20-$30 plus shipping
Ships to: United States, Canada, and several other countries -- check here
What's inside: Korean beauty products. Specifics for each box may be found on their website.
Coupon: use W9CV3Y for $3 off any $30+ order. Using my referral link, get $5 off any order of $100 or $10 off any order of $150 without a code! (Can be combined with coupon codes)

Colorboxes are $15 Memeboxes with 3-4 full sized makeup items based around a certain colour theme. In this case, the Jewel Tones box should be full of jewel tones. As you can see, Memebox provided four items in this box. One notable thing about this is that they are all from the same brand, "Color World". I cannot find this brand for the life of me online, and therefore cannot check if the values Memebox has given me are correct -- though I highly doubt they are, as you soon will see. 

Star Powder in 05 Violet Full size || Value: $14 (according to card)
Um... alright, well when you tell me "violet" in a "jewel tone" box, I'd expect the color of an actual jewel, like amethyst (one reason I bought this box, as it's my birthstone). This is... barely passing the definition of violet. Better than the other options, though, which were white (acceptable) and white-green (name me a white-green jewel)! This was, despite being a loose powder, not pigmented at all in my opinion. The swatch below could just barely be regarded as a lavender, and that was after several swipes -- granted, this was not over primer. Still, compared to a full size indie eyeshadow I could get for half the stated price? Please. It's usable, especially as a neutral, but not what I was expecting from a $14 eyeshadow that's supposed to be jewel toned.

Jewelish Stick Shadow in 09 Crystal Silver Full size || Value: $13 (according to card)
Okay, Memebox. Silver is a metal, not a jewel. I'm beginning to see that something is very wrong here. But alright, the name of the stick is "Jewelish", I'll give you that. And I really, really love metallics. This shadow was also not super pigmented on first try but very easily builds up, unlike the loose powder. I've never used a stick shadow before so I'm not sure if this is the case for all of them. It doesn't drag on the skin and there's no fallout. I enjoy this and will be happy to use this, especially on lazy days!

Multi Lovely Finger Mousse Lip in 704 So Hot Pink Full size || Value: $20 (according to card)
This is that super hot pink lippie in the bottom left. It's the middle of winter and all I want to do is be as dreary as the weather, so I've yet to actually wear this. On my arm swatch, it's very creamy feeling and very pigmented. It also leaves a stain which I believe will last quite a bit on the lips, as it took me some scrubbing to get off even when I had it on for only a few minutes. But... hot pink is not a jewel tone. Not in the least. I can't tell if I'll get use from this, since I have plenty of pinks in my collection already.

Kiss the Beads Lip Gloss in 02 Red Gemstone? Full size || Value: $18
"Red Gemstone"... close enough. I couldn't figure out which colour this was of the two options, both which were named "Red Gemstone" but with different numbers. This is a sheer gloss which is buildable in colour and contains some gold-ish microglitter. It smells. Very noticeably. I can't quite put my finger on the scent -- fruity, maybe strawberry-like? I think it would put off anyone who can't handle strong scents, as I could smell it on my arm swatch as I was taking photos -- much less on my lips. I'm not a fan of glosses so I doubt I'll use this up. Not Memebox's fault, though!

Top to bottom: powder, stick shadow, mousse lip, lip gloss.
I have no doubt in my mind that the values stated my Memebox are not the true worth of the products -- either in real retail prices or in terms of quality. The items (with the exception of the shadow, which I think is poor) are of decent to good quality and the colours are technically fine -- but they do not at all align with what I think "jewel" is. I was expecting at least one sapphire, ruby, emerald, amethyst, opal, or even citrine coloured item. Instead I got a lavender, silver, hot pink, and sheer rosy pink with gold. I also wish there weren't two lip products -- a blush or eyeliner would have been welcome to round out the product types. I also don't like that this box only contained items from one brand.

As it turns out, the other Colorboxes released on the same date also contain items from one brand each (Revecen and Vivito). Why didn't they mix them up a bit? I wonder what kind of contract Memebox made with these companies to curate their products in such a way.

I paid a little less than $22 for this box after shipping and coupons, but I could have done without. At the very least the items are usable, but I found myself incredibly disappointed this time. 

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Change to Future Blog Posts

Hello everyone!

To make posting more efficient and rapid, I have decided to no longer add beneficial and detrimental ingredients of note to most make up products unless the products make claims to be beneficial or have particularly detrimental ingredients.

Items this change will affect are: all eye products, all loose and pressed powders, most cream pigments, and most lip products. I will continue to provide information about foundations whenever possible.

The reason for this change is that many make up items are simply pigment and binder. It is my opinion that trace amounts of coconut oil or vitamin E will not truly be beneficial to one's face or eyelashes, or that ingredients that are usually detrimental like alcohol would harm anyone when used as a drying agent in a mascara. To put them on the same playing field as alcohol being the second ingredient in a toner (which is meant to be something to help your skin) is silly at best, and misleading at worst.

Additionally, it takes quite a bit of time to look up ingredient lists! For English products, it may only take 2-5 minutes, though the time adds up over dozens of items. For Korean products, it may take 5-10 minutes to do some thorough searching -- and that may not result in any results. I find the costs in time to look up ingredients for makeup items is not worth the benefit considering how often these ingredient searches end up in me writing "None" for both beneficial and detrimental ingredients.

I would like to use the extra time to speed up posting for myself, as I know I am not the fastest blogger in the world (thus all my Retro Reviews). I hope that by doing this I will be able to find a balance between providing important ingredient information while remaining topical. As well, once posting becomes more efficient, I can use any extra time left to translate ingredient lists by hand! I have begun to do this somewhat for a few Memebox items in future reviews and I feel that it will be helpful for anyone who cannot translate them on their own.

If you have any feedback about this change, feel free to leave a comment! I would love to hear your suggestions.


Saturday, 10 January 2015

Retro Memebox Review: Hair and Body 1

Ah, the good old days. When I got so many Memeboxes I couldn't blog about them fast enough and resigned myself to doing "retro" reviews. Complete with grainy photos and all. Here we go! The Hair and Body Memebox promised a range of... hair and body products. The first edition was, in my opinion, the best of the line -- but others weren't bad either (see those reviews later!)

Box Overview
Box: Memebox (Referral link)
Price: Varies -- typically $20-$30 plus shipping
Ships to: United States, Canada, and several other countries -- check here
What's inside: Korean beauty products. Specifics for each box may be found on their website.

Golden Glove Exfoliating Gloves Full size || Value: $16 (according to card)
I love me a good exfoliating glove. This is much better than the one I got in a very old Beauty Box 5 (my first one, in fact!), but I don't like it as much as the ones they sell at Shoppers Drug Mart. It does not exfoliate as well as those, though from the textile I believe they are made very well. I still use them, unlike my BB5 ones which I threw out. They would be good for anyone who finds other exfoliating gloves too harsh, as they do scrub but very lightly. I wouldn't ever pay $16 for them, though!

EVAS RoseMine Perfume Touch Full size || Value: $17 (according to card)
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
This is a gel-type perfume that smelled of roses/flowers. The packaging is super cute, but I don't care for rose scents. I've since traded this. One plus: because it's a gel, I could ship it freely! Yay!

Rosapacific 19 Real Neck PT Full size || Value: $3.50
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
This is a neck hydrogel mask. It looks a bit like a cartoon dog bone, but fatter. I didn't really find anything special about this mask. It held on well for the first little bit but I remember it being a pain to keep on after maybe ten minutes. It was comfortable enough, but I wouldn't pay $3.50 for this.

Annagaspi Brilliant Body Design Patch Full size || Value: $17 (according to card)
Beneficial ingredients of note: caffeine, green tea extract
Detrimental ingredients of note: menthol, hot pepper extract, orange peel
This is a set of body patches (8 total) that is supposed to "reshape and firm" the legs and feet. From what I understand, the caffeine is the main firming ingredient. It constricts the blood vessels, causing the appearance of firmness. This effect is, of course, temporary. Also, because of the menthol and hot pepper extract, there is a sensation of both extreme burning and/or extreme cooling, depending on the person. Some people may not think this is painful at all. I would compare these to sore muscle patches that heat up the skin. I have not used these because I don't see the point in them.

Zivon Plu Scrub Oriental Jin+ 1.76mL/50g || Value: $25 (according to card)
Beneficial ingredients of note: red ginseng, olive oil, macadamia oil, argan oil
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
This scrub works very well and leaves me feeling smooth and not dry at all, thanks to the oils. The scrub itself is fine grained, though I don't know what material it is made out of. I really enjoy this and have been saving it for days I really want to pamper myself.

Kocostar Nail Therapy Full size x2 || Value: $7.60
Beneficial ingredients of note: shea butter, aloe juice
Detrimental ingredients of note: lemon oil, lime, grapefruit oil (last ingredients)
This is actually a set of masks for the fingertips! In each packet are two rows of paper sheaths that slide over the fingertips. The insides are covered in essence to nourish the nails and cuticles. The sheaths are vaguely sized differently for each finger (the thumb mask is wider than the others, for example). The essence itself is creamier than an average sheet mask. I've used several of these from Memebox, and while they don't make a huge difference, they do moisturize and it's a nice way to pamper myself -- even though it can be frustrating to do things without the use of your fingertips!

SD Hair Steam Hair Pack Full size || Value: $6.90
Beneficial ingredients of note: argan oil, royal jelly
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
This is a hair pack that comes in the form of a hair wrap coated in essence. You wrap the pack around your hair and massage it to coat your hair with the essence. I've actually yet to try this, because I was waiting for a (much needed) haircut -- I didn't want to waste it on gross, dry strands. I finally got one -- so I can't wait to try this, even though I now have much less hair to use it on!

1004 Laboratory Kiss the Perfume Brilliant Hair Treatment Full size || Value: $49 (according to card)
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
I'm just finishing this up. This wash-off conditioner smells strongly of cherry blossom but the smell fades quickly. It works as well as any mid-end hair conditioner, and I quite like it! I wouldn't pay almost $50 for it, though. I love the packaging. It feels very solid in the hand and the pump works well.

I supposedly got $140 worth of product from this box, though I highly doubt it's that high -- Memebox loves to inflate prices, but when it's difficult to find the items on legitimate websites, I can't help but go with the price on the card. I would more than likely value this at around $100, which is still a very amazing value. I wish all boxes were this great. I feel that Memebox's value has declined significantly (as you will see as reviews continue). I still think it's a nice place for beginners to go if they feel overwhelmed by the plethora of items offered by sites like Tester Korea or RoseRoseShop. I know I did when I first started. Now I feel much more confident in my taste for K-beauty products, thanks to Memebox. 

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Memebox Cafe Box Review

Another day, another Memebox to review. My backlog of reviews never seems to end. So here I present to you the Cafe Memebox. I got this in a restock maybe a week after the initial Cafe Memebox was released, before I knew what was inside. Did it fit the theme? Let's find out.

Box Overview
Box: Memebox (Referral link)
Price: Varies -- typically $23 plus shipping
Ships to: United States, Canada, and several other countries -- check here
What's inside: Korean beauty products. Specifics for each box may be found on their website.

Binu Cook Ice Cream Scoop Cacao Body Soap Full Size || Value: $3 (according to card)
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
I looked up and down for ingredients for this adorable molded soap, but couldn't find any. The company makes all sorts of soaps in different scents and shapes, and appears to be very naturalistic -- they also sell things like pure carrier oils. Memebox tells me this can be used on the face, but I'm not willing to test that out. I've used it on the body and the very strong cacao scent fades very quickly as soon as I rinse myself off. It doesn't seem to dry out my body skin at all. It also doesn't lather much, which adds to my hunch that this soap is very "natural".

Pure Smile [Original] Mask Sheet in Green Tea Full Size || Value: $1
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
I miss the days of Memebox where they would add in more than just one mask as a single item! Pure Smile masks are nice, but I'd rather get something else. I've yet to use this, as it's been added to my ever-growing hoard of sheet masks.

Holika Holika Dessert Time Lip Balm in Peach Cupcake Full Size || Value: $6
Beneficial ingredients of note: unavailable
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
What a cute cupcake! This balm is scented like peach and is tinted a very peachy pink. I don't notice the colour when it's on my lips, though the smell lingers for maybe ten minutes. It is moisturizing initially but I don't find that this is enough for my constantly chapped lips -- if I were to use this daily, I'd be reapplying every half hour, probably.

Cleomee Anti-Wrinkle Donkey Lotion Full Size || Value: $62.00
Beneficial ingredients of note: donkey milk (first ingredient), donkey oil (fourth ingredient), sodium hyaluronate, jojoba oil
Detrimental ingredients of note: "herbs", whatever that means (last ingredient)
Wow, $62! I'd balk at the price but I've been using this every other day for my entire body since I got it and I'm almost done. I can't say I'd pay $62 for this, but I can certainly see why one would want to. The advertised ingredient is the first ingredient in this lotion, as weird as using donkey milk might be (P.S. donkey milk is A-OK for those who are lactose intolerant). The bottle and pump are high quality and the lotion moisturizes wonderfully while not leaving me greasy for a long time (maybe 5 minutes). Some may be put off because there is a slight smell to it, and if you rub too vigorously the lotion leaves white streaks. I really enjoyed this, though I can't say I noticed any "anti-wrinkle" effects.

Vella Fresh Creamy Soap Full Size || Value: $12
Beneficial ingredients of note: in no particular order -- donkey milk, aloe extract, witch hazel, propolis, royal jelly, honey
Detrimental ingredients of note: unavailable
This soap comes in a container similar to ice-cream. I know ice-cream is big in Asian cafes, but two items is pushing it, I think. This soap has a lot of nice ingredients but I'm not a huge fan of anything labelled "soap" for my face. I don't know the pH of this so it'll either be used for my body or put in trades.

Tony Moly Latte Art Cappuccino Cream-In Scrub Full Size || Value: $9.25
Beneficial ingredients of note: milk protein extract, coffee seed extract, cocoa seed extract, honey extract
Detrimental ingredients of note: some plant extracts which may be irritating to some
Now this is more like it! This scrub's strong coffee smell permeated the entire box. The lip balm still smells like it a few months later. This product is housed in an adorable cup-shaped container, with a spoon inside the top of the lid. A+ packaging. The scrub itself is a sugar scrub, which I am hesitant about because it is somewhat rough on the skin. The scrub starts off brown and as you massage it lightly into the skin, turns white to signal when to rinse, which is ingenious. I love the smell and I'm quite happy with this, even though I limit my use of scrubs to once a week maximum.

Overall, this Memebox cost me about $30 and I received over three times the value, though most of that comes from the donkey milk lotion. I've been using every item but one (the ice cream bucket soap), which is a great hit-miss ratio for me. I very much enjoyed the lotion, the high ticket item in this box -- though I can't quite say donkey milk is cafe themed. Regardless of how well this Memebox hit the theme, I was very glad I got this box overall.

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Haus of Gloi Review

Haus of Gloi is a perfumerie and bath&body product indie company that carries perfume oils along with scented emulsions, pumpkin butters, scrubs, bath bombs, and more. I ordered from them on November 26th and my items were shipped on December 6th. I got one lip balm ($3.50), five perfume oil samples ($2.50-$3.00 each), and an emulsion mini jar ($3.50). Two of the samples are from their seasonal Yule collection. I did not get a free sample, but they did throw in a small hard candy of Asian origin. I wasn't a fan of the taste! It tasted familiar, but a bit tart.

Candy Corn Lip Balm 
Beneficial ingredients of note: virgin coconut oil (first ingredient), shea butter (second ingredient)
Detrimental ingredients of note: none
I'm one of those weirdos who likes candy corn. Most people I know don't, which explains why this autumn lip balm was still in stock all the way through November and to my knowledge only sold out halfway through December. This balm truly smells like candy corn: sickeningly sweet and almost artificial. There is no added sugar, so this balm is pretty tasteless -- maybe a bit waxy. Unfortunately, it doesn't do much for my constantly chapped lips. I think it would be fine for someone who only needs some regular Chapstick branded balm once in a while, but it's not for someone like me who carries around a container of Vaseline 24/7.

The Haus 'nog! Cream, sugar and a shot of dark rum topped with fresh grated nutmeg.
Initial reaction: Smells like eggnog. Yup. Creamy and sweet. Not getting much rum or nutmeg, though.
Wet: Less eggnog, more vanilla.
Dry: So much vanilla. For a little bit it almost borders along offensively vanilla (a la Bath and Body Works), but dies down to a nicer, mature vanilla scent.
Overall impression: On me, this lasts over five hours, even after a shower. The throw isn't great after an hour; I have to put my wrist right next to my face to smell this. It's pleasant, and I'll wear it, but not something I think I will repurchase.

Sweet Potato Treat
For me, this is the epitome of holiday comfort food: Sweet potatoes with mild spices, butter and brown sugar baked off with marshmallows.
Initial reaction: Sweet potatoes and marshmallows and cinnamon and sugar oh my goodness.
Wet: See above. I am falling in love.
Dry: For the first 10-15 minutes, my skin amps up the cinnamon to level 10. It's almost overwhelming, but I love cinnamon. After that, the cinnamon dies down to let the other scents mingle. It smells very much like it does in the vial for several hours until dying down to a creamy marshmallow scent.
Overall impression: I've already ordered a full size of this perfume along with a mini jar of it in pumpkin butter format. I love it. The staying power on me is amazing, lasting over 12 hours on my skin and over 24 hours on the piece of clothing I was wearing at the time. The throw is good too -- I could smell it on my wrist when walking with my arms down.

Litchi Milk Tea
Tart lychee fruit and black tea met with a splash of coconut milk.
Initial reaction: Hmm. Sort of a light scent. I definitely can see where litchi would come in, but I'm not getting a ton of tea or coconut milk. I suppose all of those are lighter scents to start with, though.
Wet: The tartness of the litchi comes out more, but not offensively so. Very poor throw on me.
Dry: Same as in the vial but very faint.
Overall impression: This is one of the most highly recommended scents for HoG, but it just didn't last on me. It was virtually unnoticeable by two hours, and even in the first half hour only I could smell it when I placed my wrist in front of my face. Just didn't work out, unfortunately.

Mango Sticky Rice
Sweet mango, coconut infused rice and toasted sesame.
Initial reaction: Definitely smells like sticky rice. Not getting a lot of mango.
Wet: Same as in vial. Still only a tiny bit of mango.
Dry: A little sweeter, but not really mango-y, still.
Overall impression: Throw was medium-low and it lasted about five hours. I really wish the mango was a bit more prominent, even though I like the smell of sticky rice. This is something I might purchase once in a blue moon in sample form to keep around. It's a nice scent that doesn't scream "I'm wearing a gourmand perfume".

A bewitching blend of clove, nutmeg and coconut, on a bed of rich golden amber, sandalwood and spilled wine.
Initial reaction: Wow, the wine really comes out in this. I barely get anything else except a hint of amber and coconut.
Wet: More wine, still no clove.
Dry: First some more sandalwood comes out. Then about 45 minutes in it turns into dryer sheets. I know I had this happen with a Possets perfume a few weeks ago, but I tried it on someone else too and the same thing happened!
Overall impression: Really disappointed. Absolutely no clove or nutmeg in this for me; the wine and sandalwood took over entirely.

Satyr Body Emulsion 60mL/2oz
Beneficial ingredients of note: cocoa seed butter (third ingredient), shea butter (fourth ingredient), jojoba oil
Detrimental ingredients of note: none
Italian blood orange drizzled with a blackened vanilla.
The smell of this is much more apparent on the skin than in the jar. On me, it starts off as a sour citrus scent which was described to me by others as "citrus soap gone bad" -- not great. After about an hour, the citrus fades and I'm left with a creamier vanilla scent with just a hint of orange. Still, not a scent I'd like to try again in this product. The emulsion itself is a bit springy to the touch but is easy to spread. It soaks in easily, leaving a film for only about a minute before being basically unnoticeable. It did moisturize quite well. I wouldn't say the formula is the best I've ever tried, but I appreciate a short ingredients list and the large selection of scents. The scent lingers for quite a bit though the throw is reduced significantly over time.

Overall, I'm glad I ordered from Haus of Gloi and I have already ordered again. I'm excited to see their other seasonal collections when the time comes. I've also heard great things about their hair oils in particular, which look to have great ingredients. I'm still researching the ingredients used in their scrubs, soaps, and bath bombs, and I'm unsure if they will work with my skin so far. Regardless, HoG has another devoted customer.