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July 27, 2015

Indie Weekends: AFK Cosmetics Christmas in July Advent Calendar Review

AFK Cosmetics announced they would be doing another Advent Calendar this summer for Christmas in July, and that all of the products would be exclusive to the box. And there would be a sample size and a full size option. Once I saw that the full size was only $60 ($5 per item!), I knew I had to grab it! You may remember my review of last year's Christmas 12 Days of IMAM Advent Calendar, I wasn't thrilled with it only because I had quite a few of the items already. But this year everything was exclusive, and the theme was Summer Lovin' inspired by beach days of the 1950's.

AboutAFK Cosmetics is an indie cosmetics company specializing in eyeshadow and lip products that are mostly video game themed! Dena is the owner, and she is based in Washington. She recently introduced a few other kinds of products, including mascara and face primer.

Note: Just pretend like I actually posted this on the weekend! I got busy and didn't get my weekend reviews done like I had hoped.

Shipping - I don't think we ever got a set date of when these were supposed to ship, other than sometime in July. Mine shipped on July 18th, and arrived 2 days later via USPS from Washington to California.

Product Size - I purchased the full size calendar, so everything was either full size or a mini. I think the only minis we got for the full size box were the Femme Fatale shadow and the Haus of Gloi Refresher Spray.

Free Samples - Dena said that our calendars had a bit of a delay because of an item held in customs, so she included a bonus lip tint sample with every calendar.

All eyeshadow swatches are done over Too Faced Shadow Insurance primer. Blush swatch is done over bare skin and blended out.

AFK Cosmetics Beautiful Blonde Pineapple - (Value: $6)

I wasn't sure how I would like this shade just from how it looked in the jar, but after I swatched it I'm really excited to use it. It's a perfect subtle shimmery nude shade with a bit of a sheen. I think it will be a perfect shade for my lids because it's really close to my skin tone. I can use it by itself for a subtle look, or bring in other brighter colors to pair with it.

Blackbird Cosmetics Beauty School Dropout - (Value: $6.50)

This is a very slightly pink toned matte beige shadow. Like Beautiful Blonde Pineapple, it's similar to my skin tone, so I think it will work well in various applications. I just need to use my matte shadows more now!

Hello Waffle Flamingo Lip Gloss - (Value: ~$8.25)

Since Hello Waffle's products are sold in Canadian Dollar amounts, I converted the value of this item to USD at the current exchange rate. This lip gloss is pressure sensitive, and explains on the label that you can apply it lightly for a peachy shade, or rub in with your fingers for more of a cherry shade. I couldn't quite mimic the effect on my lips using the doe foot applicator or my fingers, so I swatched it on my hand to see if I could get it to show. It looks like more of a coral shade when you rub it in, which is a really fun concept. It also has a coconut flavor to the gloss.

Sixteen92 Boardwalk - (Value: $13) "Coconut pulp, coconut milk, Coppertone, sand, sea breeze, driftwood, melted vanilla ice cream cone, sticky cotton candy."

I originally tried this perfume on right when I received it, without knowing the notes and thought it smelled really sweet, but also a bit beachy. There was something that was making it smell kind of strange, so I wanted to let it sit before really testing it out, just in case the trek here wasn't kind to the scent. In the bottle, it smells like the boardwalk, sticky sweet, with a bit of suntan lotion and ocean spray. On the skin, I get the vanilla ice cream and waffle cone sort of scent, mixed with some coconut, and a bit of freshness from the ocean scents. It's really quite wonderful, perfect for anyone who likes gourmands or beach scents. I'm thinking the "strange" smell must have been the cotton candy, which kind of comes through more after dry down. I wish this was a bit more beach scent than sweet food scent, but I think it's a great rendition of the boardwalk.

Baroque Cosmetics Mind If I Stand On Your Towel? - (Value: $8)

This blush from Baroque is kind of a peachy coral shade with a bit of a shimmery sheen. It is pretty easy to only apply a little for a bit of color, or apply more heavily for a more dramatic blush. It blends out easily, and I wore this the other day and it looked very flattering on my skin tone. It gave me just a bit of color to my cheeks.

Shiro Cosmetics Destiny Islands - (Value: $5)

Shiro makes a few tinted balms, but hasn't come out with a new one in a while. So I was surprised to see this included in the calendar, but tinted balms are so perfect for a quick summer lip look. This shade is kind of a light red shade, that gives just a bit of color to your lips with a quick swipe or two, but can also be built up for a darker shade. The one thing I don't like about tinted lip balms is that rubbing your lips together gathers the products at your lip lines, so I try to just press my lips together to blend it better.

Femme Fatale Bonfires On The Beach - (Value: ~$2.80)

This shadow is one of the mini products we got in the full size calendar. It's a royal purple with lots of gold glitter and a bit of a red sheen. It's pretty, but not as nice as some of my other Femme Fatale shadows. It applied kind of patchy and I was hoping we'd get an amazing duochrome, since Femme Fatale does those so well.

Innocent+Twisted Alchemy Mojito Madness - (Value: $6)

This shadow is a light forest green with a golden sheen and baby blue sparkles. It was a bit patchy for me, but I think this will look phenomenal foiled or applied over Pixie Epoxy.

Preen Cosmetics Galah Cockatoo - (Value: $7.50)

I was super excited to see we got a lipstick shade from Preen Cosmetics. It's a fairly new company, and I've tried one of their products before and really enjoyed it. I found that first lipstick of theirs I tried to be really creamy, which can make it hard to apply and to not get all over. But this one had a slightly less creamy formula, which was much more like how I typically think of lipsticks to be. It was really easy to apply, and not get all over the place! I absolutely love the shade too, it's a bright coral shade which I know I will be wearing all the time.

Haus of Gloi Peachy Refresher Spray - (Value: ~$4) "Peach juice, Hawaiian white ginger flower, smooth Hawaiian sandalwood, a touch of yuzu and vanilla."

I recently reviewed the Refresher Sprays from Haus of Gloi, and they are basically body/linen sprays. It's too bad this scent wasn't made available for everyone on their site because I think it would have sold really well. But I am glad I managed to get this one, because it smells amazing. Just to note, this one is a 2 oz and not a 4 oz like the ones sold on the site. That makes this a mini, and not a full size.

Tilt/Shift Cosmetics Twinkies & Wine - (Value: $6.50)

Tilt/Shift Cosmetics has closed for the time being, possibly permanently while the owner decides if she wants to continue her pursuit of making eyeshadow. We received this full size eyeshadow that's a baby blue with a bit of a green sheen. It's quite pretty, but the jar was so full and had no sifter. If you haven't opened this jar yet, be careful, as I wasn't expecting it to be so full and without a sifter.

AFK Cosmetics Too Pure To Be Pink - (Value: $6)

This was the last item of the advent calendar, a peachy shadow from AFK Cosmetics. It's quite lovely, and I think will work well with the other AFK shadow from the calendar. I am so glad everything in this box was so wearable, and all the kinds of shades I like for summer, and even year round.

AFK Cosmetics In The Lurch - (Value: $2.25)

Dena threw in this bonus mini lip tint balm with all of the calendars as an apology for them shipping later than she had anticipated. I never would have known it was shipping late, since I never saw a date that these were supposed to ship. So it was really nice of her to include this. It's an orange-y red tint that can be built up or applied really lightly.

Everything in the full size calendar all together! I can't believe we got all of these amazing products!

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the Christmas in July Advent Calendar, and it had a total value of $79.55 not including the bonus lip tint, and $81.80 including the lip tint! I only paid $60 (plus $3 shipping) for this full size calendar, and I think it was absolutely worth it. I received more value than I paid, and got some great exclusive indie products that I will totally use. I don't think I could possibly pick only one favorite, so out of the twelve products we received, I love the two AFK Cosmetics shadows, the Preen Cosmetics lipstick, the Baroque Cosmetics blush, and the Haus of Gloi Refresher Spray. The perfume is lovely too. I can't wait to see if Dena decides to do another Christmas advent, because I can see it being just as amazing as this summer calendar was!

Customer Service - I contacted Dena via Facebook message because my tracking number still hadn't updated even though she posted that all of them were moving finally through USPS. She got back to me really quickly and figured out I just had the wrong tracking number. She provided me with the correct one, and it was actually out for delivery that day! I usually don't like to message owners via Facebook as I get worried it gets lost and many are never seen, but she replied really quickly and helped me out with my issue.

Availability - This box and it's products are no longer available, and were exclusive to the calendar. However, you can purchase a mystery grab bag item from the calendar here. There are options for a sample product, or a full size product.

Overall Satisfaction - My favorites were Beautiful Blonde Pineapple, Boardwalk, Mind If I Stand On Your Towel?, Galah Cockatoo, Peachy, and Too Pure To Be Pink. My only hope for possible future advent calendars is maybe one more perfume/bath and body/lip/face product, and one less eyeshadow.

What did you think of the AFK Cosmetics Christmas in July Advent Calendar? Let me know in the comments!

For all other AFK Cosmetics reviews, click here

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