Marie Claire's The Parcel, Spring 2016 Edit - unboxing and first impressions

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It's been a rough couple of weeks. Being a primary carer is never easy, but it's even harder when you're at the end of your third trimester to boot. Your energy levels are nil and your body feels destined for the scrapheap, and sleep is scarce when you can't get comfortable and your belly is having parties overnight.

I won't rabbit on any more about that because so many people go through it, but my point here is: these are the times when I'm glad I'm subscribed to beauty boxes. Honestly, knowing that this box was going to arrive this week has helped keep me going, and while I can't rustle up much excitement for anything at the moment, I was still excited to get this and to see what it contained - so the box was worth it for me before I even opened it : )


But enough of all that. Looks like a good box, yes? I'm pleased about this because the last box was the most disappointing one (for me) that we'd received from The Parcel to date, and I was worried that I'd made the wrong decision to resubscribe because overall I prefer the Ageless Parcel and Maslow & Co.

While that's still true, this edit of The Parcel has held its own and I hope Marie Claire can sustain this level for those of us on annual subscriptions: there's nothing worse than being locked in to something that's no longer delivering the way it was before.


Look at all that stuff! A few things I've already tried but I'll use just about everything in here and that's always a good sign. 

I'm also pleased to see a more balanced box and one that isn't filled with things we've seen before: if this had contained yet another day cream or nail polish, I'd have been annoyed ; )

Plus I've hit the jackpot because I was considering buying that exact coffee scrub, so this box has saved me a purchase. Woot woot!

Anyhoo. Let's have a quick look at each item in turn.


C-Lab & Co Coffee Scrub with Coconut (RRP $9.95 AUD for 100g; received full size)

This is apparently a 100 per cent natural formula that targets stretchmarks and skin imperfections. You're meant to take two handfuls of the stuff and rub it in a circular motion, concentrating on problem areas (eg thighs and hips). 

It also says to leave this on for five minutes to let the natural oils absorb - I'm not sure I'll be doing that because it will involve turning the water off and standing there shivering! - but I'm really looking forward to trying this so I'll likely open it soon.


Essano Argan Oil of Morocco Duo-pack (RRP $15.99 AUD for 2 x 50ml; received full size)

According to the card, this little set is perfect for travel and should help beat dry, damaged hair on the go. The set includes a deep-cleansing shampoo and a nourishing conditioner that are sulphate-free and gentle enough for colour-treated hair.

I'm pleased with this inclusion: I can always use decent-sized travel haircare like this, plus it's designed for my dry hair so that's good too. It may take me a while to get to it because I don't finish hair products quickly, but I'm looking forward to testing it soon enough.


St Tropez Self Tan Classic Bronzing Mousse (RRP $59.99 AUD for 240ml; received 50ml sample) and Applicator Mitt (RRP $11.99 AUD)

Apparently one of these is sold every minute. Who knew! I personally prefer tanning creams because I find those easier and less hassle, but looks like I'm in the minority there if this is so popular.

The new formula should make this easy to apply, offer a streak-free finish and have a fresh new scent. It also claims to dry quickly and last for up to ten days.

While I do use self-tanners and love St Tropez products, I've somehow wound up with three tanning mousses in the last few months and I'm going to struggle to get through them! At least this is a smaller size that still contains enough to get a good feel for the product.


Nude by Nature Natural Mineral Cover (RRP $39.95 AUD for 15g; received 2g sample)

This is apparently an award-winning mineral loose powder foundation that offers buildable sheer to medium coverage and SPF15 protection. It contains jojoba esters and kaolin clay, and adapts naturally to your skintone to cover redness and pigmentation, conceal enlarged pores and even out your complexion.

Although I've heard mixed reports on this product, I've always wanted to try it and have almost bought mini packs before - glad I didn't now! I don't use much powder foundation (many dry-skinned lasses will say the same) but it's handy to have one in the handbag for touch-ups, especially in summer when frequent sunscreen application can disturb your morning makeup. Super pleased to test this, and glad I received the right shade (medium).


Maybelline New York The Nudes Palette (RRP $25.95 AUD for 9.6g; received full size)

This was the sneak peek item and I've heard quite a few beauty-lovers say they now wish they hadn't bought it at one of Chemist Warehouse's 50 per cent off sales - understandable!

This is another one I've heard mixed reports on, and I'm not sure yet whether I'll keep mine: not because I don't want to try it (I do), but because I already own dupes for most of the shades in my collection (and my collection isn't that big - it's just that they're pretty standard shades), so I don't really want to add yet another bunch of eyeshadows to my pile that mightn't get much use.

I do want to review it though so I might do that before passing it on. We'll see.


MOR Mon Amie Adele Luminous Body Milk (RRP $16.95 AUD for 80ml; received full size)

MOR is one of my favourite bath and body brands of all time, so I'm always pleased to see something from these guys wind up in sub boxes. Even better, this is a range I haven't seen before so I can't wait to give it a go.

Apparently the product uses shea butter, jojoba and sweet almond oil to leave your skin soft and your limbs set for spring. Might have to open this tonight - I'm in need of a pick-up : )


The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask (RRP $44.95 AUD for 75ml; received 5ml sachet)

Few people love receiving sachets in sub boxes but I don't mind the occasional one, so long as it contains enough to actually get a good feel for the product. Fingers crossed there's enough in here to be useful.

According to the card, this mud-textured exfoliating mask works to deeply cleanse and detoxify the skin. It contains Himalayan charcoal and green tea leaves, and helps purify the complexion.

That all sounds good. Not sure how much we'll see from this little sample but I'll certainly use it.

Sunsense Sensitive Invisible SPF 50+ (RRP $10.95 AUD for 75g; received 10g sample)

I'm always up for purse-sized sunscreens, but I'm not sure you can safely re-seal this little container: if not, that's super annoying so I hope I'm wrong.

Apparently it's a new sunscreen that's scientifically formulated for sensitive skin. Eh, it'll get used.


Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multipurpose Dry Oil for Face, Body & Hair (RRP $26.99 for 50ml; received 10ml sample)

If there's one product I've received umpteen times in sub boxes, it's this one. Thankfully I absolutely love the stuff, so no complaints there!

If you haven't used this, I urge you to test it - it's just beautiful and smells amazing. I've reviewed it here. This is going straight into my hospital toiletries bag - it'll be great for the belly after delivery and will hopefully help make me feel a little more human at the same time ; )

Narcisco Rodriguez For Her EDT (RRP $125 AUD for 50ml; received 4ml sample)

I'm always up for perfume samples - particularly when they're decent sizes like this. While we've received a Narcisco Rodriguez fragrance from Marie Claire before (it was in an Ageless Parcel), it wasn't this one so I'm happy to try something else.

I popped it on this morning and it smells nice, fresh and inoffensive - the notes are apparently musk, floral and amber - but the lasting power is pretty rubbish, and from memory the other fragrance had the same issue. Still, I'll use this too.

In sum

Not a bad little box, yes? The RRP value of the contents is over the $100 mark, so the value is there if you're going to use most things, as I will.

I'm really happy with this box, I must say - it beats the last edit of The Parcel by a long shot. While this mightn't be my favourite of the three boxes I'm currently subscribed to, I still feel that my yearly subscriptions have been worth the outlay overall. So long as that continues, I'll stay subscribed.

Did you receive this box? Let me know your thoughts if so : )


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