Birchbox February 2012 Belated Review

Birchbox Review for February 2012

[A little late, but I just got it!]

I have a confession to make: I am addicted to entering sweepstakes. Discussing my sweepstakes issue likely would be an entire blog post itself! One of my last wins was a year subscription to Birchbox (thanks Café Escapes!). In case you aren’t familiar with Birchbox, I’ll give you a little rundown. Each month a package arrives at your door. It contains about 4-5 samples of deluxe beauty products (skin care and make up) and a little something extra. The samples are usually generous and last for a few applications. If you love an item you can get onto Birchbox’s website and buy it. Each item you buy earns you some points, similar to how the Sephora rewards card works, and you can use them toward later purchases. I love samples, especially of beauty products that are on the pricier side, so if you do actually purchase something you have a good idea of whether or not you will be happy with it. Birchbox costs $10 a month or you can subscribe for the year for $110.

This month I received my first Birchbox in the mail and my oh my is it adorable. I got home after a long, long day of work and school to see a little 1 lb. pink box sitting in my doorway. Really having no idea what to expect, I was impressed with just how cute the packaging was and how everything was neatly put together inside the box. The products were wrapped in colored tissue paper with ribbons tied around them and there were two Café Escapes K-cups (although I do not have a Keurig brewer, oh well).  There were also three pink and white notecards—one welcoming me to Birchbox, one listing the products included in my box, and the last one had information about ordering the full-size products.

So what did I get?

AHAVA Mineral Foot Cream

Full size price: $19

Birchbox says: After all those ouchy hours in high heels, our feet deserve a treat—like this hydrating cream, which has natural avocado and jojoba oils to soften and sooth.

My thoughts: I have this weird OCD ritual where every night I put moisturizer on my feet. I really don’t like feet, but I really don’t like when the skin on mine are dry. Clearly, I was pretty excited about this AHAVA foot cream. And it didn’t disappoint me. It was rich and creamy and left my toes feeling happy. It might be time to upgrade from my Jergens.

Rating: A

Korres Guava Body Butter

Full size price: $29

Birchbox says: Rich shea butter and healing quince extract team up to keep skin soft all day. Warning: the refreshing tropical scent will inspire cubicle daydreams.

My thoughts: I don’t get too excited over body creams (feet are an exception). I am not that great at remembering to use them until my skin gets too dry and itchy and I am miserable. Now, this cream did smell tropical. After I opened it up I immediately thought ‘hmm, Folly Beach.’ My boyfriend told me that I thought it smelled like the beach because it smelled like sunscreen. Whatever, I slathered it on. It felt nice when I was putting it on my skin, but after about fifteen minutes I got up and rubbed Jergens all over my body because it just didn’t feel like it penetrated my skin. Since its winter and my skin is dry anyway, I’ll let it slide a little bit, but I was expecting better results.

Rating: B-

Number 4 Hair Care Lumiere D’hiver Reconstructing Masque

Full size price: $58

Birchbox says: This luxe hair mask overhauls dry strands with fortifying soy proteins, while light-reflecting polymers add major gloss.

My thoughts: Deep conditioners are both good and evil. I love the way they make my hair look, especially when I get into the habit of applying them on a regular basis, but I hate waiting that 2-5 minutes to rinse them out. I’m a weirdo who needs to be entertained every second, so typically my showers are pretty quick. If I do the deep condition thing outside of the shower, I end up having it in my hair for 2 hours because I forget to wash it out. Anyway! All that aside–this is a very nice product. Its nice and thick. The smell is a little weird; I still can’t pinpoint what exactly it is, something cocoa buttery but not. It made my hair really smooth, silky and shiny. If it didn’t retail for almost $60 I’d go out and buy the full size right now.

Rating: A

 

Orofluido Beauty Elixir

Full size price: $29.99

Birchbox says: We don’t know what we love more—this hair serum’s trio of nourishing essential oils or its intoxicating amber scent.

My thoughts: Since my hair is on the thicker side and somewhere between curly and straight, I really love using serums on my hair. I almost always use an oil on my hair everyday, just a little bit for that extra shine and control. This Orofluido hair serum is really nice and is a mixture of a few different oils (Lindseed, Cyperus, and Argan). It smells really nice and makes my split ends look not so much like I haven’t gotten a hair cut since August. The only downside is that I have gotten just the same results from oils that are a 1/3 of the price, so I’m not really convinced it is worth spending more money on this product when you can get the same results elsewhere. Price aside, I love it.

Rating: A

 

Stila Forever Your Curl Mascara

Full size price: $22

Birchbox says: Finish your look with a coat (or three) of this genius mascara, which is formulated to curl lashes as it lengthens.

My thoughts: Mascaras and I have historically been at odds. I have always had long eyelashes. As a child swimmer I couldn’t wear goggles for awhile because they were too long for me to blink with the goggles on…it was ridiculous. I didn’t even start wearing mascara until college when I finally got into using it and realized its potential. Since I have long lashes, I tend to buy mascaras that promise lash thickness and/or definition. I’ve been wearing this Stila mascara for the past few days and I am still undecided on how I feel about it. Basically, I am coming to the conclusion that while this is a good day-wear mascara, it doesn’t offer a lot of va-va-voom for nighttime. Eyes are my favorite thing to play up for going out, so I would likely not choose this for those occasions. However, for a day to day look, this mascara works.

Rating: B

All in all, the March box cannot come soon enough. It’s such a fun concept and a nice little surprise to look forward to. I am excited to see what my mysterious Birchbox will hold next month…and of course you can expect an update from me. Since the short time crunch of wanting to get this review out before the March box arrived, I didn’t get to take my own pictures, and lifted them from the Birchbox website. Next month I’ll be prepared to take photos of the “unboxing” so you all can see how adorable the thing is. Stay tuned!

Want your own Birchbox? Go to http://www.birchbox.com?raf=s6h6z to sign up!

Note: I do not work for Birchbox or am affiliated with them in any way. My thoughts are entirely my own and do not necessarily reflect those of Birchbox.

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2 thoughts on “Birchbox February 2012 Belated Review

  1. The samples were roughly the size of the sample products you would get as a ‘gift with purchase’ at the make up counter. I’ll have to check later to see if it lists the volume on the sample products, but I believe I’ve read elsewhere that the APR of an average box is about $20. Plus, if you take into account that these are likely samples that would be difficult to get otherwise, I think its a good deal. The nice thing is that you don’t have to commit to a year membership, so if its not for you you’re not totally screwed. I’d recommend giving it a try!

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