Materni-Tote

jess9

 

So we all know that you can get some pretty cute (and crazy, in a good way) clothes and accessories on loan from Le Tote, right? Right.

But did you know you can also get cute (and probably also crazy, in possibly less good ways) MATERNITY clothes on loan from Le Tote? WELL YOU CAN.

I tested this out for myself back in August (aka back when I clearly didn’t NEED them yet, as I was solidly in the who-keeps-feeding-that-girl-burritos phase), and I really liked it! Here’s my bullet pointed take on the situation:

PROS:

  • I loved all of the items I received in my tote (well, with the exception of a scarf – it was beautiful, but hopelessly static’d to itself).
  • The clothes were RIDICULOUSLY comfortable – especially a pair of harem-style lounge pants that I wore literally every single day the tote was in my possession (just not in public. You’re welcome, believe me).
  • You had the option to select non-maternity completer items, like this pink suede jacket, which is excellent because things like maternity jean jackets and cardigans are a freaking joke – who is buttoning those things anyway? And why exactly do I want to stretch something over my belly, button it, and run the risk of breathing just a little too heavily and shooting buttons at unsuspecting coworkers when everything inevitable goes to hell?
  • There’s a pretty interesting and fashion-forward selection of items to choose for your tote.
  • Not having to wash/clean/otherwise care for your items (just throw them in the bag dirty and ship it off!) is preeeeeetty sweet.
  • You have the option to keep any item in the tote if you just can’t be parted from it (though, of course, you have to pay for it).
  • For maternity wear (aka stuff you’re not wearing forever), it’s nice to be able to add flavor to your potentially limited wardrobe without having to buy a billion new pieces.

CONS:

  • Let’s be real, the price: about $55 per month. For many people I’m sure it’s totally worth it, but I found it hard to justify that cost along with the price of items I desperately needed (like jeans, and everyday work clothes, and PJs, etc).
  • Again with the price: I fell IN LOVE with the lounge pants they sent me, but I balked at paying over $80 for fancy sweatpants. The other clothing items were similarly priced… or more. Maybe I would spend that on normal clothing, but DEFINITELY not maternity gear.
  • It’s possible that the selection of clothing was a little TOO fashion forward – I would have appreciated more options for work (like dresses or skirts) and a few more special occasion outfits that didn’t feel too revealing (hint: I do not want cutouts when I identify so strongly with this majestic creature).

So my verdict? It’s a pretty cool service, and one that I might use if I ever decide to have another kid to keep my closet fresh…. but for right now, I want to focus my finances on building a basic maternity wardrobe I feel good about. So I packed my tote back up, and said goodbye for now.

(Except to the earrings. I kept those. $16 well spent).
jess7 jess5 jess4

Dress: Le Tote 

Jacket: Le Tote

Earrings: Le Tote

Shoes: Target (similar)

jess2

Sephora Play! Review

Lift up the product guide, and you see the main packaging - a cute drawstring bag

Quick show of hands, who here has tried some sort of beauty subscription box? Now who here has WANTED to try one, but never pulled the trigger? I fell into the later category for… well… years, actually. I had a lot of hesitations – I didn’t want to fall in love with products that would have to be purchased online, I was worried that I wouldn’t use most of the samples. If I’m being totally honest, I was worried I wouldn’t even know HOW to use some of the samples they would send (makeup pro, I am not).

Enter: the Sephora Play Box. I’m an accidental Sephora junkie (I was sthocked when I hit VIB status in December – I blame my fierce Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment habit), so when they announced they were doing a beauty box, I decided it was finally time to try it out. I’m on my second box so far – before I dive into the pros and cons of this service, let’s take a look at what I got in my May box:

Jess21
The shipping boxes are a distinctive (and adorable!) black and white stripe), and the first thing you see inside is a product guide.

Jess18

Jess13
Item #1: Bite Amuse Bouche Lipstick
Jess6
Guys, I can’t even begin to tell you how creamy and delicious-smelling this lipstick is

Bite Lipstick

Jess14
Item #1: Korres Wild Rose Night Facial

Jess5

Korres Wild Rose Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial

Jess11
Item #3: Perfume sample! A very pretty musky orange scent…
Jess3
…that weirdly comes with a gorgeous post card?

Atelier Cologne Orange Sanguine

Jess12
Item #4: Briogeo Deep Conditioning Hair Mask

Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair! Hair Mask

Jess15
Item #5: The tiniest lip crayon sample you ever did see

Tarteist Lip Crayon

Jess16
Item #6: Origins Maskimizer, which came with TWO sample masks for you to try it with

Origins Maskimizer

So all told, that’s 6 (or 8, depending on how you’re counting) samples.

Let’s start with the cons:

  • The samples are small. They’re similar to a regular or deluxe sample you’d get with a standard online Sephora order.
  • This service is fairly new, and I think they’re still trying to find their groove – last month’s box was in a cute box (this month was a bag), and had fewer samples. So, there may be some inconsistency while they work stuff out.
  • There’s a wait list to join.

And now, the pros:

  • The price is on par with other boxes ($10/month).
  • The samples are of products I can buy in store – which means that I can head into a store and try other colors of that awesome Bite lipstick I got to sample.
  • The samples (at least in this box) are almost all thing I actually WANT to use.
  • The product guide is very thorough – this box had three themes (lips, skin, and hair), and explained how to use the products.
  • And just in case THAT wasn’t enough, see that card on the front of the product guide? That is a Play Pass, which is good for one “FREE one-on-one tutorial” for “advice that’s all about you”. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet (since I literally just got the box on Monday), but that definitely gives me zero excuses for not using the products due to my own lack of knowledge.

So overall, I would DEFINITELY recommend this box – at least for a month or two. It’s cheap, the products included are great, and come on – who doesn’t love Sephora? I say hop on the wait list (boo…) and give it a try!

It’s Kitten tested, and Dog approved!

Jess8