MSA is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read the full disclosure.

Play! by Sephora Review – August 2017 – Box #205

Play! by Sephora is a monthly beauty and makeup subscription. Each month they send you six samples, a PLAY! BOOK of tips and tricks, and a PLAY! PASS for in-store learning.

My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

Every month they ship all of the samples a drawstring bag with a different design. 

FYI – There are variations of this box. This review is for the box # ending in 205.

To find out which box you’re receiving at the beginning of each month, follow these instructions:

If you log in through a browser, not the app, and go to my account > account details > online orders and open the play! Order Details (it was dated 11/1 for me), you can see the “item number” next to the image.

The Subscription Box: Play! by Sephora

The Cost: $10

The Products: Five deluxe samples plus a fragrance sample, a PLAY! BOOK of tips and tricks, and a PLAY! PASS for in-store learning.

Ships to: US

Check out all of our Play! by Sephora reviews and all of our reviews of Cheap Subscription Boxes for other similarly priced boxes!

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

Each box comes with a Play! Pass, which is a card you can use at Sephora (in-store) to get 50 extra rewards points, and you can also get one-on-one tutorials and tips of products from a Sephora consultant.

This month’s theme is “Elements of Beauty.” Now, on to the items!

Clinique Dual-Ended High Impact Mascara & Primer Duo – Travel Size? Value $8

This primer and mascara duo is perfect for a compact makeup bag!

The primer formula is moisturizing, and I felt it gave my lashes a very lush look with the mascara. The combined formulas gave me excellent lash definition, and I could apply multiple layers to get good volume and length.

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Dry Shampoo – 1.8 oz Value $12

I think this is my all time favorite dry shampoo. First, I LOVE all things from Living Proof (their formulas are free of any ingredients you may want to avoid and everything smells amazing.) Second, this spray does a great job of absorbing excess oil and making hair look fresh and clean.

(One word of caution, though: this spray is white and not clear, so if you overdo it on dark hair, you’ll have to brush it out a bit!)

Lancer The Method: Polish – .5 oz Value $8.90

Lancer is a very pricey, high-end skincare brand, so this is a fab sample to get in a box! The formula is a super fine scrub, so it’s a gentle exfoliator, and you can use it every day. It left my skin super clean, smooth, and not dried out at all!

Hourglass Varnish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick in Beige – .04 oz Value $7.35

If you are looking for a full-coverage foundation, this is a good one. It’s a creamy formula, and it blends really well. And my favorite part – it is super easy and quick to apply. Just dot your face with it, then blend with a brush. I’d recommend starting with a small amount, and building up if you need more coverage, since a little goes a long way with this foundation.

Here it is swatched:

The color is a bit too dark for me, but this sample was a great way to try out the formula. Since I’ve found my holy grail foundation (thanks to the Sisley subscription box), this one fell a bit short, but I’d still give it a B+. (Since it’s a creamy, heavier foundation, some of it settled in my pores and lines on my face.)

beautyblender® – Value $9

This beauty blender is SO tiny! It’s great for precision in applying foundation around the eye area and around nostrils.


If you aren’t familiar with how to use this makeup sponge, first you wet it, squeeze it out, then bounce it across your skin to help blend in/apply foundation. The finish is as close to airbrush as I think you can get!

DOLCE & GABBANA Light Blue – Sample

(All Sephora boxes include 5 beauty products plus an extra perfume sample.)

Nostalgia! I don’t really wear perfume these days, but this scent was my jam in high school/college! (I alternated between this and Calvin Klein Euphoria.)

It has notes of Sicilian Citron, Bluebell, Granny Smith Apple, Jasmine Sambac, Bamboo, White Rose, Cedarwood, Amber, and Musk.

Verdict: This box has a value of about $45. I think that’s great for a $10 beauty box, especially since the box will always include high-end brands. And the Living Proof, Clinique, and Lancer samples are all great sizes!

What do you think about the August Play! by Sephora box? What variation did you get?

Play! by Sephora

How do subscribers rate Play! by Sephora?

Customer service
Retail value
Quality of products
Ease of canceling

per month
Created with Sketch.

Never miss a post: get email alerts about Play! by Sephora!

Enable notifications () to get the latest Play! by Sephora spoilers, reviews, deals, and news delivered to your inbox.

Written by Liz Cadman

Liz Cadman

Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She’s been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!

Posted in Beauty Subscription Boxes, Cheap Subscription Boxes, Makeup Subscription Boxes, Play! By Sephora Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Women| Tags: play by sephora | 38 comments

Comments (38)

  1. This was my first month receiving the Play box. I have also been subscribed to Ipsy for years and it’s never gone wrong.

    I received foundation and concealer, both were for very dark complexions. I checked my profile to make sure it wasn’t my error and sure enough, “fair” was marked. So I have no use for my samples this month. I was very disappointed. When I called to make them aware of the mistake, the only thing they could offer me was to reimburse me for that month.

    Not looking good, Sephora.

  2. Does anyone know how to find out which box you will get? Is it the last 3 number of your item # in the order confirmation??


  3. This is the first month since I cancelled and I looking at the boxes in the variations I’m very satisfied with that decision. FYI the July box is available through the website as a 500 point option for VIBs.

  4. This August box was very disappointing I was not excited about any of the products. I don’t really wear mascara, the anti aging mist is something I didn’t really need, glam glow moisturizer might be ok, and don’t even get me started on this perfume saint/sinner! I don’t know who is picking out these perfume samples but this stuff smells horrible! It smells like something my grandmother would wear. The perfume sample that was sent in last month’s box smelled the same way. Although I didn’t like the products, I do like the bag but other than that this box was a total waste.

  5. I was very happy with this box as I had never tried the Lancer or a beauty blender. Lancer was a huge hit for me. The beauty blender was meh, but I’ve used airbrush makeup for the past 4 years and nothing I’ve tried has ever come close no matter what tool or foundation I use.

    D&G light blue has been a favorite perfume of mine for about 10 years now, have the full size, so was slightly sad I didn’t get to try something new, but at least I can actually use the sample. It was weird seeing a perfume that’s been around forever in a box!

    As long as Sephora keeps introducing me to products that other boxes don’t have, I will stick with it.

  6. I switched from ipsy to Sephora play this month and I am a bit disappointed in my Sephora box that came today. I definitely felt like I got an exciting present every month with my ipsy box vs today feeling like I just “bought a box of samples.”

    • Me too I didn’t get a mask or a big sample this month. I got the tinest Erborian Glow Crème Illuminating Face Cream sad

  7. I got the wee baby beauty blender and immediately used it (so it didn’t go in my photo slide on instagram – oops!!)

    I used it to sort of bounce blend my eyeshadow, but just at the outer corners – it worked beautifully!

  8. Disappointed in my August Play box, no. 197. I don’t think Sephora went by my profile at all. Received the dry shampoo, and my hair is dry and curly. I can go long in between washings because I have very little oil. I never use dry shampoo, and I’ve received two of them in Play boxes. Also, while the Kopari mini melt is nice, it is just coconut oil which you can purchase very inexpensively and it behaves the exact same way and has the same uses. The Too Faced products are great products, but I think this mascara melt off is just one more step that I don’t need to add to my routine. I already use a cleansing oil in my 2 step cleansing process, so I don’t think I’ll be purchasing this product.

  9. This was my box, and I love it. LP is my favorite dry shampoo and I can never get enough dry shampoos in sub boxes! The little BB is so cute, I am excited to try it around my eyes as my regular sized one is too big for fine details in that area.

  10. I have 155. Apparently it’s one of the last ones to ship out 🙁

    • Me too! I’m anxiously refreshing for the spoilers, mine shipped yesterday

    • Found a picture of #155 on Reddit

      Beauty blender micro mini, Clinique dual ended High Impact mascara and lash primer, Hourglass foundation stick in Shell, Erborian Glow Creme illuminating face cream, Alterna Haircare Caviar anti aging volume mist, Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue.

      • I’m disappointed the mascara was the only thing I wanted and the coconut melt off mask I didn’t get 🙁

  11. I got box 189, which has the Saint AND Sinner perfumes in it (!!) but the Sinner bottle was totally smashed to smithereens and there were tiny pieces of glass everywhere. I took everything else out but had to throw the bag itself away. I emailed customer service and have had pretty good luck with them so far so hopefully they can do something to fix it.

  12. Liz,
    (Sorry if this posts twice) This is one of my most favorite reviews you’ve ever done. I absolutely LOVED it. It made me smile.😊

  13. The scrub is amazing! The BB is ridiculously small, I can’t even hold onto it. This box number seem to be for Olive profiles skin tones and matches perfectly but I’m not impressed with the product, I just like full coverage. I liked the mascara but the L’Oréal Voluminous primer is waaayyy better. An de I’m tired of dry shampoo but this is one of the best I’ve used.

  14. how many variations are there?! still haven’t seen mine. whyyyyyyy

    • I am waiting on 155. I haven’t heard many people ask about that one:( hope I’m not the only one! Patiently waiting lol

      • I’m waiting for it too!

      • 291 for me – don’t think i’ve seen that yet?

      • I have 155. Apparently it’s one of the last ones to ship out 🙁

  15. If the foundation is too dark, since it is in stick form and so think, it can also be used for cream contour or bronzer.

    • They shipped the foundation stick in different shades – I received Shell, a light neutral shade. It turns out to be a pretty good match for me – rare for subscription boxes!

  16. This is my box and I love it. The foundation is a near-perfect match for my skin. The beauty blender will be great for eyeshadows. The Living Proof is my fave dry shampoo. And I can’t wait to try the Lancer product.

  17. I resubscribed hoping to get this month’s box and that adorable tiny beauty blender.
    Looks like sisley is the next box to add to my addiction.

  18. I’m getting the hourglass vanish foundation stick in box #130. I love this foundation and was really excited about getting a travel size to keep in my purse. I’ll be super disappointed if they give me that color though! BEIGE (medium,warm undertone) will be WAY too dark for me since the NUDE (light medium, neutral undertone) color is good when I’m tan but I normally use SHELL (light, neutral undertone). I have light selected in my profile….please don’t mess this up Sephora! Pretty please 😇

    • I am also a ghost in skin tone. Maybe all #130 boxes were sorted by skin tone. Shell sounds like my jam. Still sad no bum bum cream for this pale girl though.

      • I’m super pale as well, but I’ll be excited to get it in any case, even if it’s too dark. I want to see how the formula works for me. I used to use a stick foundation all the time and frankly thought nobody was making them anymore, but they seem to be making a comeback. So I really want to try some of these new ones out and see how I like them.

    • Box 130 contains the “shell” shade. I feel like it’s a good shade, but a little warm for my skin tone. But it’s lighter than beige for sure.

    • I got Shell in box 130!

    • I got my box today #130. The shade in the foundation is shell.

  19. I really hope that hourglass foundation is a different shade in box 130. Otherwise it’ll join the alterna on the swap site. I’ve had a problem with my foundation settling in the pores on my nose and I’m hoping the mini beauty blender will help me be able to use less foundation in that area while still providing enough coverage.

    • Same, I’m getting 130 and I’m the same coloring as you. Fingers crossed!

    • I have light selected and received box 30 today, the hourglass is in the shade Shell. Yay!

    • I received mine today and it Hourglass is in Shell! 😀 I sub to two boxes, both were 130 this month, and they’re both in Shell! This is by far my favorite Play Box ever!

  20. Still don’t get why they can’t open this up to Canadians when we have so many Sephora’s here=(

  21. When I discovered that microbeads were (a) a thing, (b) utterly horrible for the environment, and (c) in my favorite scrub (Laura Mercier face polish), I set about finding a new facial scrub. I went through a LOT of products, never being satisfied with any of them.

    Until I found that Lancer polish. It’s super effective and gentle and the scrub aspect is smooth enough that you don’t have to worry about microtears like you do with a lot of the others (especially nut shell scrubs and things like that.) Love!!

Please do not enter your email address in the Name field or in the comment content!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Remember to post with kindness and respect. Comments with offensive language, cruelness to others, etc will not be approved. See our full comment policy here.