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PLAY! by Sephora #786 Subscription Box Review – November 2019

Play By Sephora November 2019 makeup subscription box review

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 #786. 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 box

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

group shot of all products

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

November 2019 PLAY! by Sephora #786 Review

info sheet with all products

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. 

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!


NARS Lipstick in Tolède, 0.05 oz – Estimated Value $10.83 (Buy a full-size 0.12 oz for $26.00)

I love lipstick, so this box is already off to a good start with this totally wearable NARS shade. I would describe it as a ruddy-pink that is subdued but pigmented enough to work well on loads of skin tones. I am also thrilled that it is a satin finish, which I strongly prefer over matte.

Hello, I love you.


GLAMGLOW GLOWSTARTER™ Mega Illuminating Moisturizer in ‘Nude Glow’, 15 ml – Estimated Value $14.70 (Buy a full-size 50 ml version for $49.00)

I tend to like GLAMGLOW, though their heavier masks certainly do dry me out! I was excited to see a non-mask item in this box and even more pleased when I realized it was a pretty large tube of their illuminating moisturizer. I like products like this because they serve as a nice base for the dewy natural skin makeup routine I lean towards. The subtle glow gives that lit-from-within look I feel like I am still trying to perfect. I loved the way this looked under my daily makeup because it was very soft but gave me such a healthy radiant look. It was also gorgeous on bare skin with no makeup too!


Lancôme HYPNÔSE DRAMA Instant Full Body Volume Mascara, 4 ml – Estimated Value $18.33 (Buy a full-size 6 ml for $27.50)

I am not sure how I feel about this brush. I like the overall placement of the bristles, but the wand itself is in a slightly odd wave shape that I thought was unnecessary. It was a flat black finish though, which I do prefer over the shinier mascaras and it lasted all day, giving my eyelashes length and volume. Though I wouldn’t actually purchase this one, I am more than happy to use this generous sample!


Clinique Almost Lipstick in ‘Black Honey’ – Buy a full-size 2 g version for $19.50

Another lippy! Yeah!! I have tried this line before from Clinique and I really love the Almost Lipstick formula. It is exactly what it claims to be: almost lipstick but living in that space between a balm and a full-coverage shade. This Black Honey shade is a rusty-plum on my fair skin and gives my lips just enough color to make it look like I gave my makeup a lot more thought than I actually did on those mornings when I am just rushing to get out the door.

Feeling like I hit the lipstick jackpot this month.


Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment SPF 30, 5 ml – Estimated Value $5.20 (Buy a full-size 50 ml version for $52.00)

I have a slightly tragic history with this product that I feel the need to go into. Ok, so that is a little overdramatic, but if you have ever thought you found a Holy Grail product then had to return it for a minor reason, you get me. Basically, I have super ruddy skin and though I could probably benefit from a more full coverage foundation, I love CC and BB creams as well as sheer foundations. When I first read about this product line, I immediately went out and bought a big jar of this stuff because it was said to be super anti-redness as well as being a skin tint that matches itself to your tone as you rub it in. WINNING! Well, it was love at first sight. I wore this for a day and thought it was perfect. Enough coverage, redness reduction, sunscreen! It has everything! Then I actually caught sight of myself in a mirror and realized it was legit YELLOW on my skin. I generally purchase cool or neutral undertones with my foundation, and this was just far too warm. Devastated, I did have to return this amazing product. If you have warmer skin, please give this a try. You will probably love it. I ended up passing this pot on to Marne, who was also previously obsessed with it and she was thrilled to have a smaller pot to keep on hand.

The warm shade of heartbreak.


Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Perfume, 1.2 ml – Estimated Value $1.65 (Buy a full-size 90 ml for $124.00)

I love this perfume, but I think this is a really silly way to deliver a sample. You have to crack open the top like an ampoule, meaning either use it all at once (and be significantly over-fragranced) or hope you don’t spill it. I did spill it, meaning my desk smells really great, but I am a little annoyed.

Let us focus on the scent. This one is sexy! I remember smelling it on someone while I was out and about and asking what in the world she was wearing. She was kind enough to share Black Opium with me. Sweet, spicy, warm, and addicting, it has always reminded me somehow of Thierry Mugler’s Angel, though much less polarizing. I think it is the vanilla and the heat? Hmm. Either way, aside from the dreadful packaging, this is a sample I am always happy to get!

Verdict: This month’s PLAY! by Sephora box has an estimated value of $50.71 without the Clinique Almost Lipstick, since I couldn’t figure out what size was actually sent in our box this month. I am really pleased with that value, especially since everything this month was more or less a hit. The 2 lipsticks made my day and I also loved the GLAMGLOW moisturizer. The mascara is good enough for me to use until I run out, and the perfume is a favorite, despite the weird delivery. Though the Cicapair cream went to Marne, I really love the product and would highly recommend it, so I can’t be too bummed about it making an appearance. This was a really, really great PLAY! box for me!

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, 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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Written by Megan


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.

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 | 16 comments

Comments (16)

  1. So I was not sure how to open the perfume before this posting and I asked on a Facebook post and a lady in the group I am in told me that the piece that you break off of the top you invert it and use it as a plug/stopper for the perfume. This will help so it is not open and spill for you . It worked great and it has not evaporated. I have gotten 3-4 uses already ,

    • Thank you for sharing this info! That is super helpful! I ended up trying it out and discarded the rest. I was so disappointed! Now I know what to do next time!

  2. Such a great review with all kinds of really funny juicey tidbits of your world. So much fun to read your reviews.

    • I called Sephora and they said that starting last month and going forward they are no longer offering play points in the play boxes. Very disappointing!

  3. i got the same box too…yea it all..

  4. I received same box

  5. THAT’S a great box! If I was guaranteed to get it, I would have resubscribed. I’ve tried all of it, but would love more. The Clinique is amazing.

  6. No 50 point play pass this month or last month! I wish Sephora would be straight forward and let us know if this perk no longer is being given to customers.

    • I came on here just to see if there was anything anyone heard from sephora.

      I need to call the rouge line this week about a broken item in shipment. As good as they are, I still dread calling.

      • Just reach out to them on social media. Direct message them and upload a picture if possible. They’ve always taken care of me really quickly that way when I’ve had any issues.

  7. There was no 50 point play pass in this months subscription… are they removing that perk?

    • Echoing no 50 pt play pass for last two months & I’m not happy about it. I’d like an answer on if this perk is being eliminated or not.

    • I emailed them that I did not get the pass and they added 50 points to my account 🙂

    • I called Sephora and they said that starting last month and going forward they are no longer offering play points in the play boxes. Very disappointing!

  8. It is interesting how products show on each face. I’m incredibly pale with cool undertones and the Dr. Jart works perfectly for me. I’ll be dramatically sad with you that it didn’t work for you, because it is definitely a HG product for me.

    • Love your reviews

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