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Deal Divas

Stephanie Hayes, Katie Sanders, Kameel Stanley, & Keyonna Summers

The web is alive with beauty samples



Who doesn't like samples?

Whether it's Chick-fil-A bites on a toothpick at the mall's food court or the sample bottle of lotion you find at the drug store when you realize your knuckles are dusty, there's nothing better than getting a taste of something before you dive right in.

And it looks like the beauty industry gets it! A number of new companies are sprouting up offering samples of pricey beauty products. The idea is "try before you buy."

Among the newest is Best In Beauty, the brainchild of Tara Runkle, a Tampa resident and former TV director. Runkle got the idea for BIB during her eight years at HSN, where beauty products bring in big bucks.

"They spent too much money on products before they knew if it really worked," said Runkle, 36, about the women she encountered.

Runkle's idea isn't new, but what makes it different is that it's free. At the website, you give up your name, digits and some other vitals. Print a coupon and go to one of the BIB's participating salons.

The Deal Divas and friends decided to test out a few of BIB's products. Because frankly, what's the point if the stuff isn't even worth the gas money to go pick it up?

I'm told the products change from time to time, but my little pink BIB bag came with 3 samples:


1. Self-Tanning Towlette by Comodynes Cosmetics, 41.50 for a set of 30 at

the rundown: It doesn't stink like other self-tanners, but does have a bit of a chemically smell. It's easy to use like a baby wipe. one towel was enough for face, chest and arms -- mostly dried out before reaching the legs. Color was subtle. Samplelicous!

2. HD (High Definition) Hair Care Serum, $56.00 at

the rundown: This sample came in a tiny tube smaller than a travel-size bottle of hand-sanitizer.The liquid serum is clear and light. In fact it was so watery, it's hard to tell which part of your hair got some serum and which didn't. On a positive note, after a blow dry the serum gave the hair a lot of body. Sample at your own risk!

Antiaging 3. Goddessy RX Rich Anti-Aging Defense, $69 for 1 oz. jar.

the rundown: The cream is light, not too oily. There's not much of a smell, which is great. There's nothing worse than an anti-aging cream that smells, well, aged. After a couple days of trying the stuff, I noticed a bit of a glow and so do others. What I really wanted was for my puffy eyes to take a few days off, but I can live with the glow. Samplelicious!

In all the BIB beauty bag is probably worth the drive to one of their participating spas. Whether or not you'll decide to buy a full size of their samples is up to you.

Here are a few other companies getting their sample on.

New Beauty Test Tube -- For $29.95 you'll get a sampling of a wide variety of beauty products in a nifty test tube. Products are top of the line and include Estee Lauder and Lancome. You can sign up for the service monthly.

Beauty Habit -- For $15.00 Beauty Habit will send you a random sample of the many lines and products they carry. Products range from bath and body, to candles to men's skin care lines. If you like the products they're easy to order from BH's website.

~Deal Diva Nicole

(photos, and

[Last modified: Thursday, May 20, 2010 5:09pm]


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