Affiliate Links Press Sample
You know what I like? Surprises. So when Rakuten Affiliate Network e-mailed me last month and asked if I would like to review their latest Bonus Box, I was pretty excited! (And I may or may not have stalked Instagram for sneak peeks until the box arrived.) I've had a bit of time to test most of the things in the box by now so I thought I'd share my thoughts today... who knows what surprises lie in store? EEP!
So, some of you might be wondering... what is the Rakuten Affiliate Network Bonus Box and how do I sign up for it?
The #RANBonusBox is not a subscription box, rather it's a box sent to a handful of fashion and beauty publishers—i.e. bloggers that are members of Rakuten's affiliate network. The purpose is to introduce said publishers to new brands and products... cool! I always like trying and reviewing new stuff. If you're also a member of Rakuten Affiliate Network, you can learn more about the bonus box here. On a related note, if you're not a member of RAN and are interested in monetizing your blog I recommend joining up—a lot of great brands administer their affiliate programs through them. (Birchbox, Memebox and Paula's Choice, just to name a few of my favorite examples!)
Anyway. Let's see what was in it and get some mini-reviewing action going on in here!
Lacoste L!VE Eau de Toilette Spray Samples (Regular price: $43/1.3oz):
I',m sure most of you are familiar with Lacoste's iconic shirts—tiny alligators, anyone? Their LIVE range (stylized as L!VE) is a "contemporary design line" consisting of garments for both men and women and accessories. The L!VE fragrance has notes of gaiacwood, sandalwood & bittersweet warmth of licorice and is advertised as a men's scent, though I think it could almost pass as unisex. To me it smells mostly fresh and woody without being overly potent—kind of a casual fragrance, the sort of thing I'd wear during the daytime if I was a dude who wore cologne during the daytime. Since I'm not this isn't really my style, but it's pleasant enough—and the full-sized bottle is cool! Big old glass cube.
Laura Geller GlamLASH Dramatic Volumizing Mascara ($24/8g):Is it just me or has Laura Geller been popping up in beauty boxes a lot lately? In any case, I ended up really liking this mascara—it claims to volumize and I think that's true, plus it doesn't clump on me, which is nice. On a related note, I also tried a highlighter from Laura Geller recently that I liked... guess it's a brand to watch?
LookHuman "My Warrior Name is Beyonce Pad Thai" Tee ($28):
Look Human is well-known for their huge variety of funny printed tees and accessories—I actually already owned a couple before receiving this box (this one and this one, if anyone cares). The slogan on this shirt is apparently a reference to The Mindy Project—which I learned from Google, because I am wonderfully out of touch. (And then I watched several episodes of it on Hulu to make up for it. Advertising at work?) Anyway, the tee I received was pretty large, so I ended up giving it to Stan. Watch him model it for you:
Fits him like a glove. (The sassy phrase, I mean.) I like LookHuman's tees because they tend to be super-duper soft... I don't buy a ton of shirts with sayings on them, but I will likely look to Look Human for my next one if I do. (The "Show Me Your Kitties" shirt is high up on my wishlist.)
New York Times Keychain With Charms ($12):
Thanks to the RAN Bonus Box, I learned that the NY Times has an online store selling all sorts of tchotchkes. This keychain consists of several heavy-duty metal charms representing various iconic New York things. Since I live in New York City, I decided to put it on my extra set of keys... best to make my out-of-town guests feel as much like tourists as possible while they're here.
DHC Deep Cleansing Oil Mini (Full size: $28/6.7oz):Back before there were a gazillion cleansing oils available to the US market, there was DHC (and not a lot else). DHC's formula is well-known for being made with a large percentage of olive oil, making it ideal for dry skin. This isn't my favorite cleansing oil of all time, but I do like it—and DHC sells mini 1oz bottles like the one pictured for $5.50, which are perfect for air travel.
Nourish Organic Skin Solve ($19.99/3oz):
Nourish Organic is another one of those brands I keep seeing pop up in beauty boxes, but don't have much personal experience with. Skin Solve is an interesting product—it comes out of the tube as a creamy gel, but once it gets warmed up by your body heat, it melts into a oil. I've been using it on my legs post-shave and it's actually wonderful for that purpose—for whatever reason my legs get drier than the rest of my body, and this stuff definitely keeps the flakies at bay. I would be hesitant to use it under clothing because the oil does take a bit of time to sink in, but as a post shave/shower treatment, hell yeah! The scent is also pleasant... kind of orange-y.
Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Mist Mini ($15/12ml):
Tatcha is one of those brands I have sort of mixed feelings about. On one hand their products look absolutely beauty, but on the other, they're kind of expensive and to be honest, I find the whole geisha mythology behind the brand to be sort of distasteful. Setting all that aside, I do think this is a nice mist... it's hydrating without being greasy and smells lightly of lavender. Is it worth the exorbitant price though? Only if you really love the bottle, I think.
Ole Henriksen 2 Little Wonders Mini Collection ($24.50):
This little set contains minis of three Ole Henriksen products: truth
serum® collagen booster (0.33 oz), Sheer Transformation® Brightening
Moisturizer (0.25 oz), and Invigorating Night Gel™ (0.25 oz ). This is
the only item from the RAN box I haven't tried yet—so many skincare
products, only one face. Ounce-per-ounce it's a good value though,
assuming you're interested in trying all three of these products. The
kit is also available at Sephora, FYI.
that's all, folks! My favorite items from this box were the Laura
Geller mascara and Look Human tee (on Stan's behalf, anyway). Thanks to
Rakuten Affiliate Network for giving me the chance to try them!
What do you think of the contents of this #RANBonusBox? Which of these items would you have been most excited to try?
PS Do you like surprises too? Then here, enjoy this totally unrelated and insane-looking picture of me:
Who knows why I never published that one before. Whoooooo knows.
Disclosure: The products featured in this post were provided to me by Rakuten Affiliate Network, however any opinions expressed above are honest and my own. Some or all of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means I will earn a commission if you make a purchase after clicking on them. For more information, check out my full disclosure policy.