fivezero's Topbox, November 2017

Topbox — November 2017

Well, I’m still subscribed to Canadian subscription box Topbox (referral link)! I didn’t expect to be, but they stepped up their game a bit over the last two months, which justified the low CA$12 shipped price for me.

Here’s my November 2017 box, which I’m late in posting. I have a couple of Topbox special collection boxes to post, as well as my December 2017 box, as well.

What I Received in My Topbox (November 2017)

  • China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Dope Taupe (0.5 oz) [CA$8]
  • Elizabeth Arden Lasting Impression Mascara in Lasting Black (2.5 mL sample) [CA$32 / US$24 for 8.5 mL, value: CA$9.41]
  • Laritzy Silicone Makeup Blender [US$14]
  • Sebastian Professional Shaper Plus+ Extra Hold Hairspray (38.5 g sample) [CA$19 for 300 g, value: CA$2.44]

Also, because I submitted a mild complaint the previous month (about getting disappointing, itty bitty samples two months running), they sent me a bonus this month:

  • BeneFit Dandelion Shy Beam (4 mL sample) [CA$35 for 10 mL, value: CA$14]

Box Cost = CA$12 + 1.56 tax, free shipping

Total Box Value = CA$8 + CA$9.41 + US$14 + CA$2.44 ≈ CA$37.55

Unfortunately, I already own China Glaze Dope Taupe, but it’s still nice that they sent a polish. It’s just a shame it isn’t from a more recent collection, so I’d have been less likely to own it.

Detailed pics follow:

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fivezero's beautyBOUTIQUE haulage, Shoppers Optimum Points redemption (September 2017) Chanel, Dior, Estée Lauder

Haulage × 2! beautyBOUTIQUE (July & September 2017)

This post covers two Optimum Points redemption orders I placed in July and September 2017.

I’ve been racking up the points via the Shoppers app, and redeemed 95k points for $170 worth of product (all prices in CA$) in both July and September during two PLUS Bonus Events. Here’s July’s order:

  • ARTDECO Art Couture Nail Lacquer in Silver Willow (978)
  • Elizabeth Arden Advanced Ceramide Capsules (60 Capsules)
  • Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in 1N2 Ecru
  • Soap & Glory Flake Away Spa Body Polish

Free samples (I forgot to take pics of these):

  • Elie Saab Le Parfum EDT (sample)
  • Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Overnight Firming Mask (sample)
  • Vasanti Brighten Up! New Skin Amplifying Moisturizer (sample)

beautyBOUTIQUE actually made the first ever mistake I’ve ever had with them: they sent me the wrong shade of ARTDECO Nail Lacquer.

  • ARTDECO Art Couture Nail Lacquer in Rose Peony (953)

ARTDECO Nail Lacquer in Rose Peony 953

They only asked me to send a picture, which I did, and then they sent out Silver Willow right away. I got to keep Rose Peony, as well. I was really pleased with their excellent handling of an error. Plus, when they sent me the correct nail polish, they also included three free samples!

  • Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel (sample)
  • PRADA Candy EDP (sample)
  • Sekkisei Clear Brightening Mask (sample)

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Haulage! fivezero's beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart Spend Your Points Plus Event Optimum redemption (June 2017)

Haulage! beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mart (June 2017)

During last weekend’s Shoppers Drug Mart Spend Your Points Plus Event, I hopped onto their luxury beauty website, beautyBOUTIQUE, and redeemed 95,000 Optimum Points for $170 (plus $30 worth of Bonus Points to be added to my account later this month):

  • Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Coralium (562) [$32]
  • Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Sargasso (558) [$32]
  • Clarins 4-Colour Eye Palette (LE) from Sunkissed Summer 2017 [$45]
  • Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract (867) [$72]

These were my 3 free samples:

  • Elizabeth Arden SUPERSTART Skin Renewal Booster (free sample)
  • Elizabeth Arden White Tea EDT (free sample)
  • Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel (free sample)

My total was CA$181, so $170 was subtracted from my points redemption. You still have to pay tax (13% HST in Ontario) on the full amount, however.

The savings is like paying $1.94 for each Chanel polish, $2.74 for the Clarins palette, and $4.38 for the Dior palette!

$181 subtotal – $170 redemption + $23.53 HST = $34.53 Total

Plus the $30 worth of bonus points to come later, too.

As usual, my beautyBOUTIQUE order arrived very promptly and perfectly packaged.

Here are more detailed product photos:

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colours in Coralium and Sargasso

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colours in Coralium and Sargasso (which doesn’t look this shimmery in real life, it’s the famed Chanel “invisible shimmer” type)

Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract

Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in Attract

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Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum

Throwback Thursday! Elizabeth Arden — Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum Review

I received this 7-use sample of Elizabeth Arden’s iconic facial serum back in 2015 in a subscription box, and promptly totally forgot about it. I think I’d gotten a few samples back in my younger days (early 20s) when I got some Elizabeth Arden GWPs, and I never used them, thinking they were not meant for the young. Ah, I was silly in my youth.

Anyway, I finally got around to trying out this facial serum earlier this year, so I hope it was still good!

Ceramide Capsules were first launched in 1990. The current product sold by Elizabeth Arden has the word “Advanced” tacked onto the front: Advanced Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum. The classic capsules have been revamped for 2017:

Janet Curmi, vice president of Elizabeth Arden global education and development tells Allure. “In the new formula, we fine-tuned the combination of these lipids with new and elevated levels of skin-identical ceramides, higher levels of fatty acids, and a new ingredient, cholesterol, to further help support the [the outer layer of the skin],” says Curmi.

So, bear in mind that the formula has changed from the sample I got, though Elizabeth Arden do not mention how the technology is now advanced.

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum, label
Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum, label

This is the new full-sized packaging (60-capsule version):

Elizabeth Arden Advanced Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum
Elizabeth Arden Advanced Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum

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My Top 10 Blind (Unsniffed) Perfume Buys

A few people commented on Tuesday’s post about my penchant for buying fragrances unsniffed, so I thought I’d do a roundup of the successes and failures of this habit of mine. Now, while I do tend to buy unsniffed, I do not tend to buy unresearched, so my hit-to-miss ratio is actually pretty good.

Also, I tend not to buy unsniffed if I can sample the fragrance in person, or, failing that, obtain a sample online (Lucky Scent and The Perfumed Court were my go-tos when I was doing more sample-buying). Some perfume houses also do their own samples, and I’ve gotten some that way (Ava Luxe—or at least she used to, Czech & Speake, Grossmith, Les Parfums des Rosine).

Without further ado, here are my 10 favorite fragrances that I have ever bought unsniffed:


Badgley Mischka edp
Badgley Mischka — Badgley Mischka. This is an intense, jammy fruit blend—really gourmand and rich. It almost reaches the point where the fruit starts to seem overripe and on the verge of fermenting. I’ve smelled some similar fragrances and hated them, but this one just works for me. It’s not for everyone, but I love it on a cold winter day. The bottle is very luxe in heavy, faceted glass. I found it a few winters back at Winners.Read More »


Throwback Thursday! Elizabeth Arden — Fleet St. Plum (Nail Lacquer) Swatch & Review

Brand: Elizabeth Arden

It may surprise some of you to know that Elizabeth Arden once carried an excellent line of nail polish! I can’t say for sure when it was launched, but around perhaps 2007, I found them being clearanced at a local beauty supply and bought up a metric buttload. I may have purchased some additional ones online, as well.

I can only assume that the line was produced for their Red Door beauty salons, because I never saw them at Elizabeth Arden cosmetic counters in department stores.

The bottle’s label doesn’t actually have a product name on it, so I’m just calling it “Nail Lacquer”, since whenever Elizabeth Arden releases a couple of random nail polishes (I have a super old GWP bottle and also found that they released two polishes last year, for some reason), that’s what they’re called.

The first one I’m swatching for this blog under Throwback Thursday is Fleet St. Plum (5600-54). Elizabeth Arden’s polishes from this product line all seemed to be named after streets or cities. I initially thought that they were named for New York City streets, since that’s the city in which the company was based, but they also have some polishes called La Jolla Cream and Verona True Love, so who knows. I’m not familiar enough with NYC to know whether La Jolla and Verona happen to be places there.

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Topbox August 2015

Topbox (Canada) — August 2015

My August Topbox arrived on Monday, and while it’s a little bit more underwhelming than the last one, it’s still got a few things that I’ll end up using, so I am reasonably pleased with it.

You’re only supposed to receive four items in each Topbox, but every month they seem to send an extra sample or coupon, and this month I got a TRESemmé sample in addition to my actual Topbox.

What I Received

Topbox Canada

Regular Topbox

  • DERMAdoctor KP Duty Lotion Dermatologist AHA Moisturizing Therapy for Dry Skin (30 mL sample) [MSRP CA$49.20 for 118 mL]
  • Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Capsules Daily Youth Restoring Serum (sample) [MSRP CA$72 for 30 mL]
  • Marc Anthony Oil of Morocco Argan Oil Hairspray (53 mL, sample) [MSRP CA$9.46 for 300 mL]
  • ModelCo SHINE Ultra Lip Gloss in Striptease (4 mL, full-sized) [MSRP US$20]


  • TRESemmé Perfectly (un)Done Sea Salt Spray (45 mL, sample) [MSRP CA$5.99 for 200 mL]

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