POPSUGAR Must Have Box Review: December 2017

Good Morning, everyone! I hope you’re all surviving your week and are hanging in there until this coming weekend arrives. Today marks the first day of my pre-Christmas Vacation-Vacation, so I’ll be out and about running errands and finishing up the last of my holiday shopping and gift-wrapping today. I’m pretty excited to get it done!

Before I head off, though- I wanted to share what was in my recently received POPSUGAR “Must Have” Box- which is actually going to be my last box from the company for a while. That’s not to say I don’t simply adore POPSUGAR or enjoy everything they send me- but in an effort to save some money and make more room around my place for things as part of a resolution I’ve developed for 2018- I am briefly halting my subscription following this month’s assortment of items.

Since this month’s box marked the final one not only for myself, but for 2017- I know POPSUGAR were going to go all out to make sure it was memorable.

This month’s themes/inspirations tied into the holiday season/New Year celebration, and included: COZY, GIVING, SPARKLING, TRADITIONS, WARMTH and CELEBRATE.

Alright- let’s see what I got!

Winter is the time of year where I have to show my skin a little extra TLC to keep it from getting dried out when the temperatures drop- and part of that process is making sure I exfoliate regularly. That being said, when I saw this pretty big container of body scrub by LALICIOUS in this month’s “Must Have” Box- I was ecstatic.

Not only is this stuff not harsh at all against my skin (it’s pretty gentle- but effective!)— but it makes me smell like a freshly baked sugar cookie and I am ALL about that this time of year!

I’m kind of a Pier 1 junkie- and most of my home decor is proof of that- but even I was unaware that the company made cocktail-inspired candles. It’s a pretty pleasant surprise- especially since the Moscow Mule one I received in this month’s collection of items is both eerily spot-on in terms of fragrance (and mouthwatering!) but is also super long-lasting and pretty potent.

Now to collect them all…

Out of all the items I received from POPSUGAR this month, this gorgeous gold and crystal bar necklace from Chloe + Isabel might be my favorite. It’s so sparkly, elegant, eye-catching and fun to wear- and it ties together even the most simple or subtle of ensembles.

I have a feeling I’m going to be getting a lot of wear out of this during the coming holiday parties and New Year’s Eve!

No POPSUGAR box is complete without something I can gift to others- and in this month’s “Must Have” Box- I knew my cousin (who just moved into her very first apartment) would get a kick out of this set of four sparkly acrylic coasters from BaubleBar– which resemble a party dress I wore to New York City a few years ago- as well as about several nail polish shades I still actively wear today.

I digress- these are cute and fun and I know she’s going to make good use of them when she has her friends from her sorority over!

I just need to start this off by saying that this thin, sparkly scarf by TILO is priced at $98. Yes, you read that right. $98. I was almost worried to wear it at first for fear it would get snagged on something or have something spilled on it- but once I put it on I couldn’t take it off because it looked and felt so lovely.

I think one of my favorite things about this scarf, apart from the subtle little rhinestones sewn in throughout it- is that the colors match nearly everything in my wardrobe. I can wear this around my neck with any outfit and it will still look chic and festive. I’m in love!

How cute is this set of “FOR YOU” universal gift tags from ASHKAHN? This year I’m really trying to be unique and special with my gift-wrapping instead of just using the same patterned paper and ribbons/bows for everyone- and I thought these tags would be a nice touch to really help my packages stand out when I make the rounds on Christmas Eve to drop off presents for my family and friends!

Snack time! I split this sugar-cookie flavored chocolate bar from Wild Ophelia right away after I’d spotted it- and it was 100% worth the indulgence. Made with natural ingredients, these gluten-free treats taste as good as the packaging looks- and the company who manufactures them focus their profits on providing grants for girls/women with entrepreneurial aspirations.

Delicious chocolate AND they help women excel? I think I’ve found a new favorite candy company.

And finally- some digital loot (and I’ve blocked out the code on one of them!) The first, a $10 off of any purchase from Pier 1 in-store/online voucher, and the second- a 20% voucher for LALICIOUS.

I have a feeling I’ll be stocking up on body scrub and candles over the next few days!

This was another hit from POPSUGAR, and probably one of the best boxes I’ve seen since I first subscribed to the service a few years ago to perfectly close out the year. I’m going to miss POPSUGAR’s monthly surprises- and I hope to re-subscribe someday soon- but I had a great run and I highly recommend it to anyone who can fit it into their budget!

And with that all being shared- I’m off to buy Christmas presents! Have a great day, everyone!


– Ashley –

POPSUGAR Must Have Box Review: November 2017

Good Evening, everyone! I hope you all made it through your Mondays unscathed. It feels a bit odd to be updating my blog at night as opposed to first thing in the morning, but I experienced a bit of technical difficulty this past weekend when my laptop- the one I’ve had and have been using since I started college (I’m a firm believer in “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”)– finally died out on me for good.

After my initial freak-out, followed by a proper burial and a stunning rendition of “Taps” on trumpet (just kidding- I just packaged it up to have it taken apart by the manufacturer)– I had to make the switch over to my trusty little tablet for all my e-mail and blogging purposes. Of course, transferring all of my stuff took a little bit of time- hence this semi-late night post!

To start off this week of scheduled posts, I wanted to share what I received in this month’s POPSUGAR “Must Have” Box- which arrived at my doorstep late last week and prior to the aforementioned laptop implosion. It was another good one, which should come as a surprise to no one who has been actively reading my reviews of the service.

But let’s take a look inside!

This month’s theme/inspirations go hand-in-hand with the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday: SWEET, GATHER, GRATEFUL, FAMILY and HOST. I only knew one spoiler for this month’s box thanks to POPSUGAR’s e-mail list- so I’ll go ahead and share that, first!

I don’t typically get invested in celebrity couples and never understood the media’s obsession with them- but I fully admit I thought Anna Faris and Chris Pratt were adorable- if only because they’re both so incredibly likable individually, as well. I was thrilled when I found out I’d be receiving a hardcover copy of Anna’s new book, “Unqualified”, where she offers up relationship advice based on her own awkward encounters and hilarious history over the years.

The foreword, penned by Pratt- is sweet and equally funny in it’s own way. I’m really looking forward to sitting down with this during the coming weekend to read it cover to cover!

One of my favorite items in this month’s “Must Have” box is this simple, chic and sturdy rose gold metal headband by Chloe + Isabel (in partnership with celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin). Forgive how messy my hair looks in the above-photo. I’d been out in that oh-so-wonderful Massachusetts rain/fog right before I’d taken it- but the headband still looks lovely, doesn’t it? It’s very comfortable and classes up even the messiest of ponytails!

I love, love LOVE Tarte products- so receiving their ‘PRO Glow To Go Highlight Contour Palette’ was like having Christmas come early this year! I’m a big fan of natural, subtle shimmer lately- and the shades in this palette are so pretty and complimentary against my skin tone. They’re easy to blend and create both bold and everyday looks with ease.

But wait- there’s more!

Time for a snack break! It’s that time of year when peppermint reigns supreme- so I’m really looking forward to munching on these dark chocolate and peppermint covered pretzel rods from Fatty Sundays at work this week when I take a much-needed break in the afternoons. I’m already confident they taste amazing- but it needs to be mentioned that they also look so pretty, too! Talk about Instagram-worthy.

Anytime I get gift wrap around the holidays is a time when I’m thankful indeed- especially when it’s a unique and interesting print that sets my presents for my friends and loved ones apart. Case in point- this newspaper gift wrap (where the pattern sort of reminds me of a rock climbing wall for some reason!) from Knot & Bow which I’ll be using for some of my upcoming Christmas shopping now that I’m getting more and more into the holiday spirit!

Finally, one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen in a POPSUGAR “Must Have” Box (and are sure to be a hit at Thanksgiving!) are these chalkboard style paper placemat setting pieces from Hester & Cook– with the appropriate pencils to allow for freestyle doodling. My niece- who often sets the table at my family’s get togethers- is going to LOVE these. Designing the seating for some of the guests at Thanksgiving this year is going to be a dream come true for her considering how artistic she is.

I’m so excited to see the look on her face when she realizes what these are!

Now, I never really have problems with POPSUGAR because they almost always hit it out of the park with their “Must Have” boxes, but unfortunately- there was one hiccup with November’s assortment of items- and that was that something was missing. Apparently, I was supposed to receive a $25 voucher to BloomThat– but it was nowhere to be found- even after I turned the box upside down looking for it.

The voucher must have slipped through the cracks. It’s not the end of the world, of course- but it is a little disappointing since it would have been useful to pick up a lovely bouquet to set at my mother’s table for Thanksgiving.

Oh well.

Apart from that teeny, tiny setback- I loved November’s “Must Have” Box. It was fun, festive, and full of lovely surprises. Next month will be the annual Christmas box- and I can’t wait!

Enjoy the rest of your night, everyone! My posting schedule will be back to normal on Wednesday morning!


– Ashley-

POPSUGAR Must Have Box Review: October 2017

Happy Almost Friday, everyone! I had wanted to publish this post yesterday to stay on my blogging schedule- but no sooner had I sat down on my bed after a very long day at work on Tuesday when I pretty much just fell asleep right then and there and didn’t wake up until it was time to head back to my office again yesterday morning! Gotta’ love those curveballs being sleepy can throw you sometimes.

I digress. I’m excited to share what I received in this month’s POPSUGAR “Must Have” Box. I’ve stated in the past that the Fall boxes are some of my favorites to receive- so when I saw a couple of spoilers for October’s- it couldn’t arrive at my doorstep fast enough!

Funnily enough given Tuesday afternoon/night’s impromptu coma I slipped into- October’s themes/inspirations were pretty fitting: DREAMY, SLUMBER, SLEEP, DE-STRESS, COZY and BEDTIME were the words/ideas this month’s box were shaped around- so consider me ready to dive right into it!

I’ve actually been in need of a new sleep mask since the elastic on my most recent one broke, so this cotton, light-blocking one from Perpetual Shade came just in time. I love how soft and lightweight the fabric is, because it makes it so much more comfortable to sleep in- and the “Dream On” writing across the front is really cute.

I’m sure I’ll snap a selfie with this on soon (of course)!

Keeping up with the eye pampering, I really love under-eye patches- especially when I travel or after a long, exhausting day- so I was thrilled to get a set of 5 overnight gel patches from Patchology in this month’s “Must Have” Box. These patches in particular are supposed to soften, hydrate, smooth and brighten the eye area, which raises the question- can I have one big patch to just cover my entire face in right now?

I love Jack + Lucy products, even though they apparently don’t have an official website which would make it so much more convenient to buy their stuff- but I digress- this black and white striped pillow and blanket duo gives me serious Beetlejuice vibes while keeping me warm and cozy at night. They’re really cute.

I’ve been curling up with these while I binge-watch “The Walking Dead” episodes for the 2,000th time leading up to this weekend’s premiere!

I’ll never say no to a lovely-scented body wash- so this white tea and honeysuckle one from Lollia Life is a welcomed treat in my shower! Loaded with shea butter and avocado oil- this wash not only gets your skin squeaky clean- but it deeply hydrates and leaves a long-lasting and refreshing fragrance, too!

Time for the snacks! POPSUGAR actually included a couple of bonus items in this month’s box, as well- but these double chocolate brownies from Nature’s Bakery were part of the planned collection of items- and they are delicious! Sweetened with natural ingredients, like dates instead of a ton of sugar- these are a guilt-free treat I can enjoy at work or on-the-go!

So the first bonus item in this month’s “Must Have” box was this container of toasted coconut and almond overnight oats from Quaker. I’ve been getting really into the overnight oats thing- especially because a lot of mornings can be rushed and hectic- but with these, you just pour milk in them before you tuck yourself in for the evening, store them in your fridge overnight- and then enjoy them in the a.m.! How simple (and tasty) is that?

The second bonus item was this 6-pack of Donut Shop K-Cups! I have a Keurig (and it’s a lifesaver)– so free coffee is always appreciated. Although Donut Shop can taste a little bland in my opinion, I usually spice it up with a some flavored creamer or a pinch of cinnamon- so I can work with this for sure!

The third bonus item is this mini, spray-on version of Aquaphor’s new aerosol moisturizer. With Winter comes colder temperatures here in New England, and with colder temperatures comes dry skin- so I have a feeling I’ll be getting plenty of use out of this in the coming weeks now that Fall’s briskness is starting to feel a little more, well, brisk.

For digital goodies this month- POPSUGAR included two vouchers, one for 50% off of any Keurig Coffee Maker, and another for $10 off of any order of $50 or more at Lollia Life. I’m going to replacing my coffee maker soon since I have an older model that’s starting to give out on me- so both of these will find use very, very shortly!

And finally, POPSUGAR included a $30 gift card to Framebridge- which I’m especially excited about because it’s going to come in handy for the Christmas present I have planned for my mom this year! The frames offered by the company are customized- which makes framing your photos and artwork super convenient.

Another home run from POPSUGAR this month! I really enjoyed each of the products and- as usual- they fit the theme/inspirations really, really well. I’ll be using everything I received- if I haven’t done so already!

Enjoy the rest of your week and your weekend, everyone! I’ll be back to posting regularly next Monday!


– Ashley –

POPSUGAR Must Have Box Review: September 2017

Good Morning, Monday. We meet again- and after the crazy weekend I had these past couple of days- a long, cozy nap seems much more preferable than diving headfirst into work. Unfortunately, I think sleeping under my desk would be frowned upon- so I’ve got to power through my e-mails, voicemails, and tasks for this morning and hope the rest of the day takes it easy on me!

Over the weekend, however- I received the September installment of my POPSUGAR “Must Have” Box. Since Fall is undoubtedly my favorite season, I almost always really enjoy the curated collections I get from POPSUGAR from now through November- and I was excited to see how they were going to kick things off.

The themes/inspirations for September’s “Must Have” Box didn’t sound too Autumn-esque at first glance, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect- especially with anything ‘Floral’- which I associate more with Spring/Summer than anything else. The complete theme/inspirations were TRENDSETTING, PERSONALIZE, STYLE, FLORAL and ILLUMINATING.

Let’s take a look inside!

To address my prior concerns with the ‘Floral’ inspiration- I was pleasantly surprised to find this eye-caching and versatile black flower pin from Hat Attack inside September’s “Must Have” Box. Fitting it on my Fall blazers, hats, bracelets, or handbags- this is a cute and seasonally appropriate accessory that spices up basic Autumn wardrobe staples with essentially no effort at all.

Consider me relieved of my worry that this box would be filled with more Summer stuff!

I’ve been sporting knee-high boots lately, and I really love wearing my socks a little bit higher to give me some extra layers on my legs to play around with when putting together an outfit for the day- so these black and grey striped, knee-high wool socks from Richer Poorer are perfect!

Not only do they keep my legs nice and warm on the chillier days that have been rolling in as of late- but they match pretty much everything, too!

I just want to personally thank POPSUGAR from saving me from a trip to Sephora this week to pick up more makeup primer. This new brightening/illuminating gel-primer (packed with vitamins!) from Figs & Rouge is going to work just fine. With an oil-free formula and lightweight texture- this product keeps my makeup in place while giving me a natural glow without clogging my pores or making me look overly shiny. I’m obsessed. Where has this been all my life?

I own a couple of accessories in one of this season’s hottest hues- Millennial Pink- and now I can add convenient clutch to my collection, too. This faux-snakeskin wallet & smartphone holder from Hudson + Bleecker is the perfect size to store the necessities when I go out, and has proven to be a lifesaver for more formal Fall events when I can’t carry around my usual brown saddlebag with me. I love this!

I think my favorite, and probably one of the most unique items in September’s “Must Have” Box is this color-changing and universally flattering cream blush from Lipstick Queen– which goes on black and transforms into a beautiful berry shade once it makes contact with the skin. How cool is that?! I’ve been using the Black Lace Rabbit Blush for a few days now and it always looks subtle and natural on my complexion- and it changes for everyone depending on your skin tone. Here’s a photo of me with it dabbed on:

As you can see, my cheeks have a slight flush of color in them- but it isn’t obvious the way some powder blushes look and it doesn’t interfere with my foundation or finishing powder by making me look blotchy or uneven. It’s such a simple and effective product that kind of blows my mind every time I use it!

And of course, POPSUGAR comes through with the snacks! This is Pipcorn– miniature popcorn that comes in big flavors and isn’t loaded down with gross ingredients or a ton of salt and oil. Kettle corn is actually one of my favorite types of popcorn- so I’ll be bringing this with me to the office tomorrow to store at my desk and munch on during the week for a guilt-free treat!

Finally, POPSUGAR included a bonus item this month- a $30 gift card to HelloFresh (it’s enough to cover the first box and shipping!) My cousin has been subscribed to HelloFresh for a short while now, and she recently told me how much fun her and her boyfriend are having trying the recipes so far. Not only is everything pretty easy to make- but it tastes good, too- so I’ll be using this one for sure!

I thought September’s “Must Have” Box- while not typically like Fall boxes I’ve received in the past- was still great and included a lot of unexpected and unique items to get the season started. I loved the cream blush and the socks the most, I think- but the pin and the wallet were great additions, too!

I can’t wait for October’s box! I hope they add some spooky stuff in there!


– Ashley –

POPSUGAR Must Have Box Review: August 2017

Good Morning and Happy Friday, everyone! I’ve got a busy day at work ahead of me and an even busier weekend coming up- but it’s that magical time of the month where my POPSUGAR “Must Have” box arrives at my door and I get to share all of the fun things I found inside!

What made August’s PSMH Box so special was that it marked the company’s 5th year anniversary of curating their monthly assortment of awesome items to send subscribers. I’ve been a devoted member for a couple of years now, and I don’t plan on cancelling my account anytime soon. The things I receive are always so fabulous- and it’s truly like treating myself every few weeks when I go through it and marvel at what’s inside.

The theme/inspirations for August’s “Must Have” box were pretty self-explanatory given the aforementioned milestone- CELEBRATE, GRATITUDE, LOYALTY, SMILE and FRIENDSHIP were the words used to select this month’s items- and with this being the last box before Fall rolls around- I was really excited to see what the company had chosen to wrap up this season.

First up were these really cute white (and gold speckled!) 24-count tall birthday candles from Meri Meri. I know so many people with birthdays sprinkled throughout late August and September- and for some reason I’m almost always the one responsible for getting the cake in order for their parties (it must be my sharp eye for details)– so it’s going to be nice to have these lovely candles on hand to add to the fun when it’s time for my friends and family to close their eyes and make their birthday wishes!

I’ll never say no to trying a great face mask, and I’ve been hearing a lot of really good things about this “Bouncy Mask” from First Aid Beauty. Said to calm irritated skin, firm, hydrate and refine your complexion in just ten minutes- it sounded too good to be true! I haven’t had a chance to give this a try yet, but I plan on taking some time out during my upcoming busy weekend to see if the mask is really worth all the hype.

Who knows? It might very well make my upcoming Favorites List for the month!

I am in love with this cute, simple, friendship bracelet by Dogeared, Inc. With blue silk thread and a sterling silver heart-shaped clasp- this one takes me back to middle school when my girlfriends and I would exchange handmade friendship bracelets on an almost weekly basis. Granted, this one is a little fancier than the yarn or beaded ones we used to make when I was a kid- but the nostalgia is still there- and I’ve been wearing this a lot over the past few days!

I think my favorite item in August’s “Must Have” box was this rose gold “Free Spirit” journal from Fringe Studio. I’m always appreciative of a lovely, simple and well-made notebook to take with me on-the-go- and this one may be one of my favorites. With it’s durable and protective covers to the sweet design on the front- this has been in my bag with an assortment of pens for when an idea springs up unexpectedly or I need to take down some important information.

I’d love to have a 2018 planner with this design, too!

POPSUGAR kept up with their tradition of sending the BEST snacks this month! From Goodie Girl Cookies comes these gluten-free, low-fat chocolate chunk treats that were gone nearly minutes after I spotted them in this month’s “Must Have” box (and yes, I shared a couple- although I was reluctant about it!)

I’m already preparing to order a couple more boxes online to keep around the kitchen for the next time I have a craving but don’t want to regret cheating with something sweet now and then. These are so, so good!

The older I get- the more I can appreciate a quality gift card- so to receive a $25 card to Shoptiques was pretty cool. The website has all sorts of stuff- from dresses to handbags to shoes and home decor- so I know I’m going to have to take some serious time to do extensive browsing to determine what I want to treat myself to! Yes, some of their things are on the pricier side- but they do have a really nice SALE section I’ve been eyeing.

And also? Look how cute the card came packaged!

Finally, POPSUGAR sent me something I can gift to my mother since I know for a fact she has a set of plates that match this polka doted serving tray- also by Fringe Studio- perfectly. I know she’s going to love it, since we have similar taste in decor and I thought this was such a fun, colorful and perfect for any occasion tray that she could keep on hand whenever she has people over for company or just wants to liven up her dining room table.

POPSUGAR has done it again. I loved this month’s box- and every item fit in perfectly with their theme/inspirations and birthday celebration! This collection, as I’d mentioned earlier- serves as their lost assortment of items for the Summer- which means the Fall boxes are going to start rolling out soon. I can’t wait!


– Ashley –