Beauty subscription boxes, whereby a selection of products are sent at (usually) monthly intervals to offer a ‘taste’ of different brands, have surged in popularity in the past few years, though I’ve previously only been compelled to write about this Harvey Nichols one.
The box that has prompted this post is slightly different to the usual monthly affair – called the Powder Beauty Drawer, you sign up to Powder (so you’ll receive their newsletters), make the single purchase of the £35 box, and this drawer crammed with goodies valued at around £113 lands on your doorstep a few days later. No ‘sign up for a year’ malarky.
Slightly biased though I may be given that I write for Powder on occasion, these products are seriously well-curated and comprehensive. Take the skincare element – there are two cleansers, a cult acid toner, a serum, eye cream, moisturiser and face mask; that’s a full skincare routine bar SPF. Here’s the rundown of everything in the box //
Balance Me Restore and Replenish Cream Cleanser (medium-sized) / The contents of this tube rarely irritate and will gently remove make-up and grease. I like to use this one at night, rubbing it all over my dry face before removing with a flannel soaked in warm water.
Sanctuary Spa Warming Detox Charcoal Wash (full-sized) / A great cleanser if you’re prone to blackheads or need a deep-cleansing second wash that won’t whip moisture off skin. Reviewed more fully here.
Alpha H Liquid Gold with Glycolic Acid (medium-sized) / Alpha H’s hero product, a swipe of this over cleansed skin every other night will gently exfoliate without damage and help skin to glow. Note: glycolic doesn’t get on overly well with sensitive skin so if you’re reactive, make sure you patch test this one.
Merumaya Iconic Youth Serum (medium-sized) / Omegas and hyaluronic acids are good news for dehydrated and dry skin, plumping it up and reducing tightness. This serum contains both.
Caudalie Moisturizing Sorbet (medium-sized) / This calming moisturiser is brilliant on sensitive – including acneic – skin. Use a thin layer over serum before bed or under SPF in the morning if you find your skin becomes increasingly dry over the course of the day.
Caudalie Anti-Wrinkle Eye & Lip Cream (medium-sized) / You need the tiniest dollop of this to cover eyes and the area around lips (don’t forget the latter – it needs moisture too). This works exceptionally well on these areas not only because it hydrates, but also because it contains a lot of grape-derived antioxidants that will help neutralise external aggressors.
StarSkin Brightening Bio-Cellulose Second Skin Face Mask (single sachet) / These are my favourite sheet masks at the moment – they don’t slide around too much and are a soft, silicon-y texture rather than being papery. They also make mask-ing (sorry – that clearly shouldn’t be a verb) really easy – just throw it on, wait for the allotted time and whip off.
L’Oreal Professionnel Infinium Hairspray (full-sized) / This number offers strong hold, reduces the effects of humidity AND adds shine.
L’Oreal Dual Stylers Techni-Art Bouncy & Tender Cream (full-sized) / Powder cater this one to your hair type, but for mine this gel that enhances bounce is ideal, especially as it doesn’t need any fancy drying techniques to add boing (you know how lazy I am with hair…).
TreSemme Keratin Smooth Shampoo and Conditioner (medium-sized) / I’m new to the keratin smooth range but have been reliably assured that it is a dream when trying to ward off frizz.
St Tropez Gradual In Shower Tanning Lotion (medium-sized) / If you can bring yourself to wait the necessary three minutes for this to develop and you covet a realistic, glowing tan, this may just be your new favourite thing. Full review here.
Rimmel Super Curler 24 Mascara (full-sized) / My lashes are straight as can be and this simply didn’t hold their curl. On the basis of that, I’m not a fan, though plenty are.
Benefit The Porefessional (mini-sized) / Diddy though this tube of oil-free primer may be, you only need put the thinest layer where pores appear prominent for it to reduce their appearance.