Allure Beauty Box is a $23 monthly beauty subscription from Allure Magazine. Each month they send out a mix of deluxe and full-size samples from mostly high-end brands. (It was named one of the best beauty subscription boxes by MSA readers in the 2021 Subscription Box Awards.)
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
As always, the box arrives beautifully packaged. I always look forward to the full sizes inside and this month isn't going to disappoint by the looks of it!
There was also the helpful mini-magazine with more info on the products.
Now, on to the items!
Sunday Riley Light-Hearted Sunscreen SPF 30, 1.5 fl oz - Retail Value $35.00 (Full Size!)
SPF is a must for any solid skincare routine and should be a daily element of your routine. Arguably not as glamourous as many serums, creams, and toners out there, SPF is still the best weapon for keeping your skin healthy and youthful. Understandably, loads of people also hate using it because at worst it is chalky, heavy, greasy, and just unpleasant. The trick is to find one that works for you, and though I already have my HG SPF (SuperGoop Glow Screen!) this is an excellent alternative. What makes this formula really interesting is that it is a combination of physical and chemical sunscreen ingredients (octisalate 5%, octocrylene 3.5%, and zinc oxide 16.32%) so you get the benefits of both types. If you want to do a deep dive into the difference, this is a great starting point. While this formula does have a little bit of that chalky cast when it is first applied, It found that it disappears quite quickly, which should make this a sort of sunscreen suitable for anyone. I wouldn't say this formula is totally weightless but it certainly isn't heavy, and it absorbs nicely. The ingredient list is pretty great too, with blue-light-blocking lutein and antioxidant-rich turmeric. There is also a healthy amount of alcohol denat in here which I don't love because I have found it drying to my skin, personally. All in all, though, I liked this formula and if it makes wearing SPF a daily habit for Allure subscribers, I am all for it!
Alpha H Liquid Gold Exfoliating Treatment, 3.38 fl oz - Retail Value $54.00 (Full Size!)
I love liquid exfoliants because they are such an easy way to help your skin turn over dead skin with minimal effort. Literally, soak a cotton round and apply. Done. I found that it is especially helpful whenever I have maskne or jawline acne, as well as for those larger pores on the nose. That being said, I recommend exfoliating only where you need to and limiting it to 2-4 times a week for most people. Because this formula is pretty alcohol denat heavy, it might be a better choice for someone with oilier skin as opposed to dry. Again, alcohol denat is one of those ingredients that sparks loads of opinions, and I am just coming from a place of having drier skin that doesn't like the stuff. I am not saying you won't love it!
The powerhouse inside this bottle is that 5% glycolic acid. It is a great AHA that is geared a little more towards anti-aging than BHA salicylic acid, but I use both and love them. Glycolic has a smaller molecule size and penetrates into the skin deeper, which is why it is usually a little more dramatic. In stronger concentrations (25-70%) it is often used as a pretty aggressive sort of peel, but this gentle formula won't have most folks peeling or even getting irritated. How does this AHA work? It dissolves the bonds between layers of skin cells (specifically dead skin cells)and allows them to detach (or peel) away from the rest.
If you are looking for an exfoliant with a little more strength (7%), zero alcohol, and a price tag of under $10, I recommend this one.
Acure Radically Rejuvenating Dual Phase Bakuchiol Serum, 10 mL - Estimated Value $10.00 (buy a full size 20 mL for $19.99)
Ok, so this stuff might not be for everyone, but I really love it. Bakuchiol is pretty buzzy right now because it is a plant-based alternative to retinol. While it isn't going to be as potent or active as an Rx level retinol, it is a great option for someone who might not have significant signs of aging yet but wants to be proactive. It is also great for anyone who might be too sensitive to use a retinol. Both boost collagen production which is why we love them so much, right? This formula also has a little bit of a fun factor because you have to shake it before you use it. The blue and yellow layers form a light green when it is blended. I would not consider this a light serum. In fact, it feels a little oily on my skin and leaves behind a noticeable finish, but since I used it before bed it didn't bother me in the least. It also gave me such a nice velvet finish in the morning, even without a moisturizer on top and the slippy formula makes it easy to apply under my eyes without any drag. In addition to the bakuchiol, it has antioxidant-rich delights like eggplant, turmeric, and basil. Like most Acure products, the price is great too, making this another product I might just buy more of if I ever get to the bottom of this bottle - a little goes a long way!
Kneipp Relaxing Lavender Mineral Bath Salt, 2.1 oz - Retail Value $4.00
The last time I tried bath salts from this brand it left my tub a delightful (though completely unexpected) shade of blue. I was kind of waiting for these to do the same, but my bath water was essentially colorless. The scent is a true lavender with a backbone of camphor which was more relaxing than medicinal. It was a great way to end a particularly exhausting evening, kept company in the bath with a thriller audiobook.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick in 'Trust Issues', 3.2 g - Retail Value $20.00 (Full Size!)
New members will receive this item. Renewing members may receive Oryza Opus Velvet Ribbon Lipstick. Members will not receive the same product twice.
This lipstick is giving me trust issues because I thought it would be a stunning fall berry shade on me but it looks more like a cold, dark eggplant that really isn't doing me a ton of favors. I am pretty fair, and shades like this can be tricky, so I suspect many subscribers might have fared better. As far as the formula, if you love a matte with very minimal transfer once it dries, this is a great choice. Pigment level is over the top too! As someone who likes her liquid formulas to stay a little flexible, this wasn't my favorite.
I just thought it would be pinker?
Eh, not my best look.
Belif The True Cream Moisturizing Bomb , 10 mL - Estimated Value $7.60 (buy 50 mL for $38.00)
New members will receive this item. Renewing members may receive this or Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb. Members will not receive the same product twice.
My final item was a cute little pot of moisturizing cream. I tend to like Belif products (though I never really ever buy them for some reason?) and this one is geared towards moisture, something my skin seems to always be lacking. Inside is a blend of panthenol (helps skin retain moisture), macadamia seed oil, calming oat extract, and super moisturizing comfrey. It has a medium weight and absorbs well, leaving behind a soft clean scent.
This Allure box has a total value of around $130.60 which is a nice deal for $23. I was super excited to try that Sunday Riley SPF which alone has a value of $35, already more than the box. So, I thought this curation was pretty exciting. It didn't come without misses: the exfoliant isn't ideal for my dry skin and the lipstick was, well, about as unflattering on me as it gets. But both of these issues fall into that "personal preference" territory and I bet there are many subscribers who love them. I also really enjoyed the Acure Bakuchiol serum and the bath salts. The Belif cream was also welcome!
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
To Wrap Up:
Cost Breakdown: At $23 for this box, here is what you are paying approximately per item:
- Sunday Riley Sunscreen $6.16
- Alpha H Exfoliating Treatment $9.51
- Acure Serum $1.76
- Kneipp Mineral Bath Salt $0.70
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick $3.52
- Belif Aqua Bomb $1.34
Alternatively, each of the 6 products has an average cost of $3.29.
What do you think of the September Allure Beauty Box? What was your favorite product in the box?