As I’ve mentioned before, I have a total thing for sample boxes. If you saw my sample stash, you would probs send in an application for me to appear on Hoarders. I would say it’s an addiction – and I have no plans to stop. The excitement I feel when I open up my mailbox and see a sample box or even just a single sample is incredible. I’m ridiculous, I know.
But ANYWAY, I was pretty excited when I found an offer for a $5 sample box from Walmart. These boxes come seasonally, and they are usually packed to the brim. The products are all things you can find at Walmart (hah, obviously… what would you do if they included things you couldn’t get at Walmart…) so that means more drugstore brands than my usual subscription boxes, but it also means I get a little more bang for my (five) buck(s) – aka more products and bigger sizes.
I received the winter box this January, and it did not disappoint. My favorite part of the packaging was the snowflake-printed paper wrapped around the products inside – it served as the perfect backdrop for this photoshoot. By the way… you should have seen my dad’s face when I was taking these photos on his porch. I’m pretty sure when he got me a Canon DSLR camera for Christmas, he didn’t expect me to be using it primarily for pics of beauty products *insert crying laughing face.*
The first product I tried was the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Haircare Smooth Intense Ultimate Straight line. I received a one-use pack of straightening shampoo, straight boosting pre-conditioner, and straightening conditioner. Let me first of all point out that I pretty much can’t stand one-use packs of shampoo and conditioner. Unless you have a pixie cut, THIS IS NOT ENOUGH PRODUCT TO REALLY TRY SOMETHING OUT. But, that being said, I tried it anyway… cause that’s what sample addicts do. The shampoo and conditioner uses were uneventful. I had never used a pre-conditioner before, and if this one is any indication, I probably won’t use one again – pretty sure it didn’t do a thing. When my hair dried, it was definitely not any straighter than usual. I guess that was expected though, because this product claims to work its best with heat-straightened hair. When I actually straightened my hair the next morning, I will say it was a bit smoother than usual, but nothing extravagant. Overall, a decent product for the drugstore price (the shampoo and conditioner are $3.00 and the treatment is $8.28 on Walmart’s website), but I would probably have a better view of this product if it was called “smoothing” instead of “straightening.”
At the end of my (supposedly) hair-straightening shower, I tried out the Curél Hydra Therapy Wet Skin Moisturizer. I felt like I had a good idea what to expect with this product because I’ve been using the Nivea In-Shower Body Lotion for a while now. With the Nivea product, you apply the lotion all over your body during your shower and then rinse it off, but with this Curél one, you apply it onto your wet body (what an image) once the water is off, and then you towel dry like normal. I’ve been using the Nivea In-Shower Body Lotion as an extra moisturizer during the winter months and have been putting (out-of-shower) body lotion on after my shower like normal, but with this Curél Wet Skin Moisturizer, the layer of body lotion after is totally unnecessary. It is so moisturizing and soaks in super quickly, even on dripping-wet skin. The only criticism I have is the scent – it’s not bad, but it’s not exciting. I also received a $4.00-off coupon for this product, and that is a huge bonus since the full-size bottle rings in at only $10.94 on Walmart’s website.
I’ve really gotten into baths this winter. Though my bathtub is mini and an unfortunate amount of my body sticks out of the water (again, what an image!!), they are so relaxing and warming on a chilly night. This Village Naturals Therapy Aches + Pains Muscle Relief Concentrated Mineral Bath Soak totally upped my bath vibes. The eucalyptus, spearmint and menthol smelled amazing. I can’t totally vouch for the “Aches + Muscle Relief” because I’ve been pretty much sedentary for the past few days aka no aching muscles, but to be honest, I’m just in it for the scent. This little packet was only 2 oz. so it got pretty diluted in my bath and I probably would have used a lot more if I could’ve, but coming in at $4.97 for a large bottle means I wouldn’t feel bad about dumping cups of this into the water during my next soak.
There were two very basic products in this box, and though they are not unappreciated, I don’t have a ton to say. I think it would be hard to find someone who hasn’t tried these classics: Dove Deep Moisture Body Wash and Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. They are great, simple products, and if I’m looking for basic skincare at a low price ($5.47 for the Dove and $7.97 for the Aveeno) or am having some sort of skin issue that requires products without a lot of fragrance or add-ins, these are great go-tos. The only new comment I have is that the sample-sized bottles of Dove body wash have this bizarre oval-shaped lid that is IMPOSSIBLE to remove in the shower while your hands are wet. I hate it… I’ll always hate it.
The last product was easily the most exciting. I never really expected to get makeup products in these Walmart boxes, but I’m not sure why because I’ve legit bought makeup at Walmart before, so why not? Anyway, I received a Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick in the shade 110 Almond Nude. The formula is smooth and moisturizing, as the name suggests, and the shade goes on more opaque than I expected. In the tube, the formula looks pretty dark, and the swatch looks slightly pinky, but once applied to lips, it appears more taupey/nudey than pinky – you can see for yourself below. For only $7.97, I am definitely interested in trying out some other shades. One suggestion I have if you’re going to use this lip color is to exfoliate your lips first – it really holds on to any little chunks of dry skin.
I love that the Walmart Trendsetter box is heavy on the wellness-inspired skincare. It is a refreshing change from the beauty-heavy Birchbox and Sephora Play, so it is a perfect addition to my sample hoards. I can’t wait for the spring trendsetter box!