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PLAY! by Sephora #692 Subscription Box Review – October 2019

Megan K.
ByMegan K.Nov 4, 2019 | 11 comments

Play by Sephora October 2019 beauty box subscription review

Play! by Sephora
3.8 overall rating
564 Ratings | 55 Reviews

PLAY! by Sephora is a monthly beauty and makeup subscription box. Each month, Sephora sends you a mix of six samples (including cosmetics, haircare, skincare, fragrances, and other beauty products) personalized to match your preferences, a PLAY! BOOK of tips and tricks, and a PLAY! PASS to redeem in-store or online for 50 Beauty Insider points for just $10 + FREE shipping.

Sephora curates several variations of their PLAY! boxes each month and matches you with the version that best fits the preferences you set in your profile. (You'll fill out your profile when signing up—you can also update your profile at any time). The variation I received this month is the box ending in #692. 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, you can see the “item number” next to the image.

open black and white striped box

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

box and all contents group shot

About PLAY! by Sephora

The Subscription Box: PLAY! by Sephora

The Cost: $10 + FREE shipping

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: The US

October 2019 PLAY! by Sephora #692 Review

info card product list in back of fold out card

Each PLAY! box comes with an info sheet that provides the theme of the box and detailed product info. It also includes your PLAY! PASS, which gives you 50 extra reward points if you use it in-store or online. You can also bring your PLAY! PASS to any store and redeem it for tutorials and tips from a Sephora consultant. 

cobalt and clear plastic bag

Each month, your samples are tucked inside a recyclable pouch. This one is incredible for travel—it's so much more chic than a kitchen zipper bag!


tarte SEA Quench Hydrating Primer, 3 ml - Estimated Value $3.20 (Buy a full-size 30 ml for $32.00)

I received this primer back in June, and still feel pretty much the same about it. It feels great on my skin and adds a ton of moisture, but I didn't notice a major difference in makeup smoothness or longevity when compared to any of my other pre-makeup moisturizers. It does have a tropical scent, which you will love if you enjoy tropical scents!


Shiseido WASO: Clear Mega-Hydrating Moisturizer, 5 ml - Estimated Value $3.80 (Buy a full-size 50 ml version for $38.00)

Ooooh! The allure of crystal clear "cream" moisturizers is never lost on me. Such magic! But, as someone with dry skin, they often leave me wanting for actual hydration. This is the first one that actually acts like some sort of super cream and is a total hydration bomb to my skin! The texture is, frankly, way weird. A super dense and slightly cloudy gel, it takes very little of this stuff to cover your face. Unlike other gel moisturizers it doesn't quickly absorb, and it leaves behind a distinctly lotion-esque finish. I am kind of obsessed with it. I haven't been this excited about a moisturizer in a long while. It is just so delightfully odd and effective. The price is also reasonable enough for me to consider buying a full size, and the bougie scent is the icing on the cake.


Dr. Andrew Weil For Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion, 30 ml  - Estimated Value $5.25 (Buy a full-size 200 ml for $35.00)

This was the other sample I was truly pumped to try this month. I really like Origins' product line and I had heard good things about this lotion in terms of redness reduction. This is a liquid lotion you apply with a cotton round or something of the like to clean skin after your fave cleanser but before serums and moisturizer. You can also put it into a mister and mist on. It is super light and feels similar to water in terms of texture. I noticed redness reduction after 2 days and I am hooked! I am a fan of liquid lotions already, but this just knocked my fave out for the count. Looks like another item goes into my shopping cart!


Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil, 4.5 ml - Estimated Value $4.41 (Buy a full-size 50 ml version for $49.00)

I like getting this product because there is no way I would ever actually buy it, though it is great for skin. It doesn't have enough going on by itself for me to justify the $49 price tag, but add in a few drops of lavender oil and WOW my legs love it. I like this little dropper bottle because I can toss it into my purse without fear of leaking, and just add the lavender directly into it. And maybe a drop of sweet orange... and one of petitgrain!


Cover FX High Performance Setting Spray, 10 ml - Estimated Value $2.58 (Buy a full-size 120 ml version for $31.00)

I have a pretty good opinion of Cover FX and I was excited to try out this setting spray. After a rainy test day, I can tell you that this stuff is no joke. My makeup looked really, really great after a long stressful day of running around and misty gross rain. I don't think I would use this daily as my makeup routine is lighter most days, but for special occasions? Check.


Living proof. No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream, 10 ml - Estimated Value $1.52 (Buy a full-size 250 ml for $38.00)

If I have one complaint about this sample, it is that it is in a foil. There is actually a ton of product here, especially if you use just a small amount on dry hair like I did. I generally prefer these sorts of creams on my dry hair because I air dry my hair AKA sleep on it wet. I don't even love the idea of all of these creams sticking to my face or pillow all night long. Luckily, this stuff is a dream on my dry hair. It smooths it without making it shiny, calms static and flyaways, and smells great! Though my heart still belongs to OUAI for my hair care needs (click here for my rec for a smoothing cream!), I can confidently say that if I woke up tomorrow and OUAI no longer existed, this would be my second choice for a styling cream. Which is high praise, I swear!

Verdict: This month's PLAY! by Sephora box has an estimated value of $20.76, which was actually pretty low for this sub. I don't really care though, because it had two products that were new to me that I will be buying ASAP. I tend to view smaller sample subscriptions like this as "testers" rather than expecting some massive retail value. I more than broke even this month and I am really, really excited about two new additions to my routine. The argan oil is another product I enjoy, and I loved the frizz cream. The only real miss for me was the tarte primer, and that was barely a miss. All in all, this was a standout PLAY! box for me, even with the lower estimated value.

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, you will receive next month's samples, curated based on your PLAY! PROFILE. Get email alerts for monthly spoilers!

Value Breakdown: At $10 for this box, here’s what you are paying approximately per item:

  • tarte Primer $1.54
  • Shiseido WASO Moisturizer $1.83
  • Origins Treatment Lotion $2.53
  • Josie Maran Agran Oil $2.12
  • Cover FX Setting Spray $1.24
  • Living Proof Cream $0.73

Alternatively, each of the 6 samples has an average cost of $1.67.

Check out all of our PLAY! by Sephora reviews, our best beauty boxes, 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!

What do you think about my PLAY! by Sephora box? Which variation did you get?

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PLAY! by Sephora is a monthly beauty and makeup subscription box. Each month, Sephora sends you a mix of six samples (including cosmetics, haircare, skincare, fragrances, and other beauty products) personalized to match your preferences and a PLAY! BOOK of tips and tricks.
Megan K.
Megan K.
I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.

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I actually stopped reading spoilers and only read reviews of the boxes I get after I’ve opened mine. So imagine my surprise when I got a box full of foundations and they were all a decent match for my medium/tan skin tone! At first, I didn’t understand when I pulled two out but then I realized it was a foundation sampler. Loved it! I would love if they would do this like once a year. And they weren’t foil packets, but samples I could actually try over several days or more. Only the Beauty Blender product was in a packet, but even that had a plastic cap so I could seal it and use it again. I was very happy.

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I got the foundations and have light marked on my quiz and hot medium to tan sample shades. Literally not one worked for me. I cancelled. Resubbed to boxy

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I’m so sorry that happened!! Sephora CS is AMAZING so I bet they’d send you a better color match if you told them. I’m cancelling my boxy bc the CS there is awful and I feel like they really trick you with the variations they promote and what you actually end up getting. I’d love to know how your experience goes with them.

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I love your idea of putting a couple drops of essential oil directly into the Josie Maran sample bottle. I may try that!

I’d love to try that Waso moisturizer. 😍

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Megan K.

The WASO is a dreeeeeeam! You should at least try it at Sephora in person if you get a chance Marion. 🙂

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Jean Pheasant

I was hoping to get the foundations (my daughter got them all in her box-she was happy)! I have mature skin so trying different foundations would have been nice. I didn’t receive one, but that’s the gamble we take with beauty boxes. I too was pleasantly surprised with the Waso, I’m thinking yes to a full size purchase. I haven’t tried the other products but after reading your raves on the Origins Mushroom, now I’m wondering why haven’t I? lol. I’ve only been signed up with the Sephora for a few months so for me it’s exciting to try new products. I’ve gotten rather burnt out on some of my other box subs. I was very happy in the long run of what I received.

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Megan K.

That WASO is one of my fave new discoveries in a long time. I hope you love the Origins stuff too! Luna always has the best tips about shopping for some of my fave brands and I am stoked she gave us both a heads up about the T J Maxx and Marshalls possibilities.

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If you’re interested in trying out the Origins treatment lotion, you might want to check out Marshall’s or TJ Maxx because they seem to always have the lotion that was included in this box there. I can’t recall the price though, but I know it was less than $20. 🙂

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If I had gotten this one maybe I would have stayed. I do not wear foundation and received a primer for before foundation, three foundation samples and a setting spray for after foundation. And don’t forget the foundation 20% off. That was the last drop (of foundation). I’m out.

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I didn’t receive any of these things. Bunch of foundations. I don’t wear foundation.

Points card was for just for purchasing a foundation.

Huge dud for me.

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According to the email they sent me that says “see what you got” or something similar, this is the box I should have received. It unfortunately was not and I got a bunch of foundation that doesn’t match my skin tone. I get those emails every time and they are wrong, but I still get my hopes up sometimes. I changed my play profile at one point because my skin concerns changed (I stopped getting breakouts and was no longer concerned about large pores), and I still receive products related for that. In my pamphlet it says “chosen for your skin type” which was from my old profile. I have dry skin but because of this I keep receiving drying products. It’s like they pulled the info from my first play profile and never updated it. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I receive awesome boxes so maybe it works out in my favor occasionally. Anyone else have a similar experience?

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