Well, it's 1pm on a Sunday and I'm just rolling my butt outta bed. Eating a cold, leftover BBQ Pork sandwich from Subway and I figured, why not right about beauty products? I can't tell you why I decided to subscribe to Birchbox. I'm so not the girly-girl type and I totally suck at putting on make-up. But I'm going to let you in on a little secret. As a little girl, I was over the moon whenever my mother came home with a new Avon order. She liked their jewelry as stocking stuffers. I just wanted the samples. Those miniature lipsticks were just the right size for me and I loved rubbing on perfume samples no matter how much they stank. So when I started seeing Birchbox all over the internet. I think it sent me into flashback mode and I just had to try it.
Type of box: Semi-blind
Billing date: 1st of the month
Shipping date: "shipping confirmation by the 10th"
Shipping cost: Free to the US (Birchbox also has sites set up for France, Spain and the UK)
What's the deal?
Birchbox appears to be one of the longest running subscription box services. Each month they send out a box of five sample sized beauty products, individually customized based on a profile survey filled out by the subscriber. I call Birchbox a semi-blind subscription because they've started offering their users the chance to choose one of the five items they will receive each month from a set selection. Be advised: this appears to be a very new concept for them and they haven't worked out all the bugs. The website froze up and/or crashed on me several times when I tried to make my August selection and, by the time I was able to get through, I was told that the item I preferred was no longer available. I'm hoping they get the kinks worked out on this because their subscribers definitely seem to enjoy it.
So, my first box arrived within a few days after shipping and I was a little shocked. I've seen several images online of what the Birchbox looked like, but none of them quite represented the scale. The box itself is roughly the size of a paperback book. It comes in an easily opened outer box, which made it seem, for me, that much smaller. But size isn't everything - at least in some situations. Birchbox teamed up with Women's Health Magazine for July and they actually came up with a very cute box design.
The last sample in the box was this stuff and, in case you can't tell from the pictures, it was a REALLY small sample. Turns out, that's okay. A little goes a long way - and this is going straight in the garbage. I had to look up what the hell CC cream is - "color correcting," for the other beauty oblivious out there. This product claims to have a "self-adjusting shade" but when I tried it my best friend said I looked pale as death. Um, is this mortuary makeup? Supposedly it's a sunblock type of lotion for your face but seeing how I'm inside 23 1/2 hours a day, I don't really have a need for it. Not to mention the fact that it slicked up after only a few hours and caused my naturally oily skin to go full oil slick. Sorry folks, but this one's a bust.
Well, this particular box wasn't really a win for me. I have only two products that I actually intend to use and the rest will get tossed. But, on the upside, the rebate from the magazine will cover the cost of the box, so I'm really not losing out.
Bottom line: Keep it or Trash it?
I'm going to stick with this one for now. Even though I didn't care for much of this box, I'm not going to discount Birchbox just yet. At $10 a box, they're one of the most affordable subscriptions out there. They obviously put a lot of thought and creativity into their product and the products are all new to me. Better yet, they have a great reward system that allows you to earn points for everything from signing up to reviewing their products. And you can use those points in their store to buy the full-sizes of the sample items you liked. So overall, this is a pretty cool service and I'm going to stick with it.