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PLAY! By Sephora

When I was a little girl, my favorite thing to do besides swim or teach my stuffed animals how to read, was to play with make-up.  My Mom’s make-up to be exact.  She has been a makeup artist since before I was born and she also sells make-up.  Needless to say, growing up I had access to make-up and beauty products galore.3f27a077323ef3e5a7e3e7701b1edfd6

Now that I’m in my 40’s, make-up is still fun but it has more of a practical use at this point in life.  While I enjoy experimenting with different kinds of make-up, brands, colors and types, this hobby can get expensive.  I’m just not into spending money on products I don’t know if I’m going to like or not.  Sure, I can order online, but living an hour away from the closest Sephora doesn’t make it easy to return things and I’m not comfortable ordering products that I’ve never tried.  You-Tube and blog reviews are super helpful but everyone has different opinions, and not every product works for every individual.


Here is where the Play! by Sephora subscription box comes in!  I like it because it’s easy to subscribe and you receive a new box once a month with 5 sample beauty products as well as a bonus sample fragrance.  These samples are generous in size and they come in a cute box as well as a new cosmetic bag every month. 


When I initially signed up on the Sephora website, I answered a few questions regarding my preferences and what I was looking for in make-up, skin and hair care. Sephora then customizes the products in your specific box according to your answers.

This month the samples came in a cute drawstring cloth bag that would be useful to keep your purse make-up organized in or to give someone a gift in.  I received the box on the 18th, which was earlier than I had expected because the website states that it ships on the 3rd week of the month.  I appreciated that Sephora sent me an email when the package shipped and that I could track my package along the way.  This was my first box so I was anxious to get it and see what was inside.


Just like the website advertised when I initially signed up, inside were five generous samples and a fragrance.  Let’s break them down one by one.


NEST Fragrances – CITRINE

While I enjoy the smell of citrus, I don’t like it on my skin.  I think if you like a citrus smell on your skin, you will really like this.  It smells clean and fresh and I would enjoy smelling it on somebody else’s skin.  It’s an Eau De Parfum which I appreciate in a sample product because a little goes a long way.

1. Too Faced – Medium/Deep Matte Bronzer

            This stuff is incredible.  I’ve been a Hoola, by Benefit bronzer fan for a few years and although I’ve tried other bronzers, nothing has ever compared to Hoola.  This one does.  Not only is it a creamy, blendable perfect bronzing color (not too orange, not too red), it smells like chocolate!   This is a generous sample.  It will last a long time.


2. First Aide Beauty – Skin Rescue/Deep Cleanser

with Red Clay

A cleanser that claims to remove excess oils, unclog pores & purify your skin.  I was expecting this to be the consistency of a clay, however it’s a gel.  It has a pink tint and smells like eucalyptus and something else I can’t describe.  I like the way it makes my skin feel after I use it, soft and super clean.


3. Smashbox – Pore Minimizing-Photo Finish

Foundation Primer – Oil Free

This reminds me of the Benefit PoreFessional primer but it doesn’t sit on top of the skin like the that one does. It’s kind of like a gel and a cream melted togther.  The product is easily blendable and it seems to even out my skin tone when I apply it.  I don’t notice that it minimizes any of my pores but I will say it has some color correcting benefit.   This is the 3rd Smashbox product I’ve tried and I’ve been impressed with every single one of them.


4. Blotterazzi by Beauty Blender

A blotting cushion that claims to be a “game changer” in blotting products.  It’s a washable, reusable alternative to blotting papers and it’s made of the original pink Beauty Blender material (soft and spongy).  Although I don’t use or need blotting papers for my skin type, I think this would be beneficial for setting foundation with a powder or even removing excess powder once applied (because sometimes I go a little crazy with the powder).  

This sample also came with a sample size “blendercleanser” for washing the blotter which I think is genius.  I use this cleanser to clean my Beauty Blender and make-up brushes and it’s a great product.

On a side note, if you’ve never tried or heard of a Beauty Blender, I recommend that you do.  It’s the best tool that I’ve found for applying foundation and concealer.


5. OUAI – Haircare – Wave Spray

A spray for your hair which claims to be a “weightless texture mist for effortlessly chic, undone hair.”  This product is sodium free and has a faint but pleasant smell which goes away after it dries.  I’ve only tried it once so I can’t comment on how well it works but I don’t dislike it.  In the summer months I refrain from styling my hair other than putting it in a braid once in a while so I think I’m going to get some use out of this product.  The sample is 1.7 fluid oz so it gives you enough product to decide of you like it.  

I’m pretty sure that by now you’re wondering how much this subscription costs.  The best part of this whole thing it that it only costs $10/month.  That’s it, and you can cancel at any time.  No extra tax or shipping fee because it’s all included with the $10 monthly charge.

I’m not getting paid to promote this subscription box in any way and Sephora has no idea who I am. I’m posting this for you because I think it’s a great idea and an awesome bargain for the price.

Maybe you’re wondering what you’re going to do with the samples that you don’t enjoy.  Throw them away?  Seems like a waste.  I give mine away to my friends or family.  

If you are interested in signing up for this fun monthly box of samples, here is the link to learn more:

Play! by Sephora

There is usually a waiting list to actually sign up, but I got the invite only about a week after I joined the waiting list.  If you join the waiting list and then later decide you don’t want to enroll after all, just don’t respond when they send you an email notifying you that you can now subscribe.  If you still want to sign up after they send you the invitation email, I recommend getting started right away because they will fill up again quickly and you’ll have to wait all over again.  Overall, I think it’s worth the wait and the price.  

Published inMAKE-UP & BEAUTY


  1. Lois Schaefer Lois Schaefer

    This is an awesome bargain, considering the cost of cosmetics. Thank you for the info.

  2. Michele Nilsen Michele Nilsen

    Thanks for the tip! I am shocked I hadn’t heard of this before considering how much I love Sephora!

    • Tawny Tawny

      I know right? It’s an amazing deal.

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