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Ulta Beauty MVP Skin Routine Limited Edition Kit Review

Jessica Hapak
ByJessica HapakDec 14, 2022 | 1 comment

Ulta Beauty will, on occasion, offer curated beauty sets. They're not as frequent as Sephora's Sephora Favorite kits, but you can expect a similar style of curation where the set will include brands sold at the store. This is a review of the MVP Skin Routine, which is still available for sale (and is currently on sale for 50% off).

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

First Impressions

 

Everything in the kit comes packaged inside of this nicely made black toiletries bag with brown trim. When you unzip the bag, the products are neatly wrapped in tissue paper waiting for you to put them to use. Seeing the dopp kit these items came packaged in was my first hint that this was a set tailored for a more masculine audience, something I wasn't aware of (in my defense, I didn't look very hard beyond the "MVP Skin Routine" name).

Ulta "MVP Skin Routine" Kit Review

Billy Jealousy Leave-in-Conditioner, 0.5 oz - Estimated Value $1.25 (buy the 8 oz version for $20)

This leave-in conditioner (for both beard and hair!) is made with aloe leaf juice, jojoba seed oil,  and hops extract. It conditions and softens hair, and it also adds a very light hold. This isn’t a good fit for my hair (or my fiancé’s), but I almost wish he had a beard because I really dig the way this smells (I believe it’s a mix of patchouli and sandalwood).

Clinique For Men Face Scrub, 0.5 oz - Estimated Value $3.53 (buy the 3.4 oz version for $24)

I like that this face scrub has menthol in it because it makes for a very zesty cleanse. The scrub particles aren’t too abrasive, and Clinique recommends using this before a shave. I thought it felt nice on my unshaven face, but I’ll pass it along to C to give it a try that way when he is able to come home for Christmas.

Jack Black Turbo Wash Energizing Cleanser, 1.0 oz - Estimated Value $2.40 (buy the 10 oz version for $24)

I gave my fiancé a Jack Black product last Christmas- if C came to me and said he wanted to get more into using his own skincare products instead of just finding a soap in the shower and applying it to his face, hair, and body, this is most likely the brand I would steer him towards (because honestly, I like using them myself). This cleanser smells awesome with notes of rosemary, eucalyptus,  juniper berry, and arnica, and this is designed to be used on both your hair and body (it’s sulfate-free). I felt like this left my skin clean, and while I know my hair would need more than this to wash it, I think C would like how refreshing this would feel on his scalp.

Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser, 1.0 oz - Estimated Value $4.60 (Buy the 5 oz version for $23)

I really like the Kiehl’s brand, and this cleanser is one of their classics. I’ve found that it’s a gentle cleanser that isn’t too harsh thanks to ingredients like squalane and avocado oil, but it’s not quite as hydrating as I need in a cleanser. I can use it a few times a week (or take a travel-sized tube on vacation with me with no issue), but if this was the only cleanser in my rotation, my skin wouldn’t be living its best life.

Mario Badescu Gentle Foaming Cleanser, 1.0 oz - Estimated Value $4 (buy the 2 oz version for $8)

Mario Badescu isn’t a brand that excites me, but this cleanser is relatively harmless. It’s made with St. John’s Wort and evening primrose oil,  but it also has some citrus extracts and parabens in it that I don’t particularly love. It did the job as a cleanser, though.

Proactiv Skin Purifying Mask, 0.33 oz - Estimated Value $4.40 (buy the 3 oz version for $40)

I usually don’t look forward to testing Proactiv products when they appear, but this mask was a little different because it uses sulfur as an active ingredient, and I’ve found sulfur to be highly effective at treating my cystic acne breakouts. This is a kaolin clay-based mask, so if you apply it all over your face your skin is going to be mighty parched. As a spot treatment when you’re dealing with breakouts, though, this is pretty effective- and that means this sample will actually last for a while, too.

StriVectin Anti-Wrinkle Intensive Eye Concentrate Plus for Winkles, 0.025 oz - Retail Value $15

This eye cream is designed to reduce the appearance of fine lines, puffiness, and dark circles. It has some fun ingredients like horse chestnut flower extract, micro algae, and arctic marine ferment, and I like how hydrating it was to the delicate skin around my eyes. On occasion I will have issues with eye creams causing my eyes to burn, but I didn’t have that problem here.

Sunday Riley U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Acne Treatment Face Oil, 0.17 oz - Estimated Value $13.60 (buy the 0.5 oz version for $40)

It’s been a while since I’ve used this oil,  but I really do quite like it and I’m happy to see this sample appear in my life again. This is a much more lightweight oil than what I typically see, and it’s made with salicylic acid, tea tree oil, licorice root, and milk thistle. I actually layer it under a heavier moisturizer when I use it at night because I want to seal in all of the goodness, and my skin always looks less red and inflamed when I wake up the next day.

Tula The Cult Classic Purifying Face Cleanser, 1.0 oz - Estimated Value $7.20 (buy the 1.7 oz version for $12)

Tula is another skincare brand I like and am pretty much always happy to see, though at this point I kind of had cleanser fatigue and found myself wishing something else from Tula’s diverse product offering was featured. As a cleanser, though, this does a good job at cleansing your skin without leaving it feeling stripped or tight, and I like that it’s made with prebiotics, probiotics, and turmeric. I’ve had to use this before when I was in a pinch to remove makeup when I was traveling, and this did a decent job and didn’t burn my eyes.

Value – Was This Box Worth It?

The Cost: $30 (currently on sale for $15!)

Value Breakdown: 

  • Billy Jealousy: $1.25
  • Clinique: $3.53
  • Jack Black: $2.40
  • Kiehl's: $4.60
  • Mario Badescu: $4
  • Proactiv: $4.40
  • StriVectin: $15
  • Sunday Riley: $13.60
  • Tula: $7.20

Ulta promised a value of $67 for this set, and my math adds up to $55.98 for everything. That's not quite what the promised value is, but it's pretty good if you manage to snag this set for $15.

Key Takeaways

When I ordered this set online I didn't realize that it was designed with men in mind. I don't really believe that skincare should be gendered (do we not all have skin?), but I do appreciate that there can be some different approaches to skincare. I was actually happy to see the Dopp kit this set came in- I've been wanting a bag like it that I can start storing samples in for C and then give it to him when it's completely full, and this one is nicely made and even has an exterior zipper pocket. My biggest complaint about this set isn't that it was short of the promised value (maybe Ulta is assigning a value to the toiletries bag), but rather that of the 9 items, four of them were a cleanser and then another one is a face scrub. If Ulta is going to curate a set designed for men, I would have liked to see something more comprehensive here. I think it's still worth checking out if you're able to grab it at the sale price (it's currently $15 online), but if I had paid full-price for this, I would not feel like I got a great deal.

Is this box still available? Yes, this is still available online and may also be available in your local Ulta store.

Check out all of our Ulta Beauty Kit reviews and the best beauty subscription boxes of 2022, as recommended by our readers!

What do you think of the MVP Skin Routine?

Jessica Hapak
Jessica Hapak
I am a staunch believer that pineapple doesn’t belong on pizza and when I’m not working as a family law attorney I enjoy hiking the Louisiana trails (alligator sightings are a favorite!) or relaxing with Duchess, my cat. I’m a sucker for anything labeled a mystery box and I’ve never met a bath bomb I didn’t like.

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1 comment

Rachel

You have the Proactive mask as being .33 oz with a value of $4.40, but the picture shows it being 1 oz. If so, it’d have a value of $13.33, bringing the kit closer to Ulta’s estimated value.

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