Boxwalla Beauty Box ~ scented body product reviews

Boxwalla Beauty Box

If you’re as interested in cosmetics as you are in fragrance, you’ve no doubt become aware of the “subscription box” craze of the past five years or so. It usually works like this: you subscribe by filling out a questionnaire about your tastes, and for a monthly fee you’re sent a box of trial-sized products purportedly chosen to fit your profile. Everyone loves getting surprises in the mail, right? I’ve joined two or three of these subscription brands in the past, and for a while I enjoyed receiving my packages; as the months ticked by, however, I ended up owning too many items that I just never used (bright coral lipsticks! sparkly highlighting powders!) so I unsubscribed.

More recently, variations on the subscription theme have emerged — several fragrance clubs, for example, and now Boxwalla, a service that “curates” boxes in four categories: Beauty, Food, Film and Books. The Beauty box promises to offer “luxurious and effective products to nourish your skin and body,” all made in the United States with non-toxic and cruelty-free ingredients. I’ve just tried Boxwalla’s December Beauty box, which seemed to have a “winter comfort” motif, and — unlike some of the cosmetics subscription services I’ve tried —it was an all-around success for me…

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Parfums Raffy

Holiday fragrance gifts 2015, part 6

Our annual series of holiday gift posts continues with scented bath & body products. Still to come: cheap thrills, followed by luxury.

Oriza L Legrand bar soap

From Oriza L Legrand, bar soap trios (“L. Legrand soaps, enriched with organic Shea butter, won their universal reputation for their soothing qualities and absolute purity. Heralded in the first issue of Art and Fashion (circa 1890); the soaps from Oriza L. Legrand are so delicate you cannot be afraid to use them on the face.”) in two fragrances, Verveine de Vénus and Mimosa Doré. Three 125g bars for $39.50 at Twisted Lily

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L’Occitane + Pierre Herme hand creams ~ quick review

L'Occitane + Pierre Hermé hand creams

I mentioned when I reviewed the two fragrances in the new Pierre Hermé collection at L’Occitane, Jasmin Immortelle Neroli and Pamplemousse Rhubarbe, that shortly after smelling them I ordered a set of the hand creams. The trio comes with an additional fragrance, Miel Mandarine, that they didn’t produce in an Eau de Toilette form. Here are some very quick thoughts; if you’ve never used L’Occitane’s hand creams and you want some background on the formula, see my review of the Passionate Jasmine, Subtle Violet and Fleur d’Or & Acacia hand creams.

Miel Mandarine

This was the scent I was most curious about since they are not selling it in a personal fragrance, and also, orange + honey? That sounds fantastic. Unfortunately it is not my favorite L’Occitane hand cream ever…

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Senteurs d’Orient Orange Blossom Hammam Soap on a Rope ~ scented body product review

Senteurs d'Orient Hammam Soap on a Rope

This must be the first time we’ve reviewed a soap-on-a-rope here at Now Smell This. I’ve always thought of soap-on-a-rope (basically just a bar of soap with a nylon hang-cord attached) as the sort of 1970s-era item that was (is?) only purchased as a slightly depressing, last-resort Father’s Day gift or a holiday present for a male grade-school teacher. Affordable and practical, but sort of silly. You know.

Senteurs d’Orients’ Hammam Soap on a Rope is an altogether different sort of object, and you would never confuse it with a last-minute purchase from the drugstore or the Avon catalogue. These soaps are hand-crafted by local artisans in Lebanon. They’re circular and oversized, hand-molded with elegant, filigree-like patterns of leaves and floral motifs. They’re packaged in decorative, hand-folded boxes, and (most importantly) their scents were developed by the “master perfumers of Grasse…”

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Lush Don’t Rain on My Parade Shower Gel ~ scented body product review

Lush Don't Rain on My Parade Shower Gel

If you sing in the shower, and you like violet scents, you’re the perfect customer for Lush’s new Don’t Rain on My Parade Shower Gel. Its name is the title of a song from the classic musical Funny Girl, written by Bob Merrill (lyrics) and Jule Styne (music). Barbra Streisand sang “Don’t Rain on My Parade” in the original Broadway production and movie version of Funny Girl, and numerous other artists have covered this song over the past half-century. It’s a defiant hymn to self-confidence:

Don’t tell me not to live, just sit and putter / Life’s candy and the sun’s a ball of butter / Don’t bring around a cloud to rain on my parade / Don’t tell me not to fly, I’ve simply got to / If someone takes a spill, it’s me and not you / Who told you you’re allowed to rain on my parade?

I do have a shower-humming habit and a love for the Great American Songbook, not to mention an especial fondness for violets, so I couldn’t wait to sniff and try Don’t Rain on My Parade…

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