Friday, August 8, 2014

Birchbox: July 2014 Review

Hi, friends! There was some problem with the shipping of my Birchbox last month, so I wound up not getting it until last week. I'm pretty sure it's my fault, since I'm in the process of moving, I might have gotten the zip codes messed up. Granted, people who work at the post office should know which town is what zip code, but apparently Quality Control and that sort of thing was nixed with budget cuts from the government, so I guess no one checks for that anymore. The people at Birchbox customer service were kind enough to send me a replacement box, and it was filled with the same products I was supposed to get in my original box! I'm very pleased that my box made it to me, because I'm really excited about this month's!

Birchbox? What's that? - Birchbox is a monthly beauty and lifestyle subscription service. It sends 4-5 deluxe samples that are curated to your beauty profile. It is $10 a month, and has a wonderful rewards program, in which you can earn points for reviewing products and making purchases in the Birchbox Shop. You can then redeem those points for full-sized products in the Birchbox Shop! It's probably the best rewards program out there, in my opinion, which was one of the big draws in me signing up. If you're interested in subscribing to Birchbox, I would love it if you used my referral link.  Thank you!

The shipping box this month is blue instead of pink. It does look more fresh and summery, doesn't it?

This month's theme was Power Play, and they did a good job of incorporating it into the box this month! Not only did it come with a little booklet on how to "Power Up" (ex. include veggies in your breakfast, write things down, etc), but for the first time, Birchbox allowed us to pick one of our samples! That's right: for the first time ever, we were given a choice in our surprise boxes. We got to pick from one of two Cynthia Rowley Lip Stains or one of three Ruffian polishes. I already received a Cynthia Rowley Lip Stain in last month's box, so I went with the Ruffian. I really liked the formulation of the Ruffian polish I got back in September from Birchbox so I was excited to get another one. 

We also got a free year subscription to Women's Health Magazine with this month's Birchbox. There was an option to send in the card to redeem $10 back instead, which is what I did since I know won't read them. So basically, my box this month was free! 

Behold, the wonderfully useful information card. It lists the products in your box, the price for the full-sizes, and a description of the products and how to use them. 

But enough about that--let's get into the good stuff~

(Full-size [.10oz]: $18 ) (Sample size [.5g]: $1.80)

I was a little surprised by how little the sample was, considering I received at least double the amount of the Benefit Fake Up back in October. Still, I'm really excited to have received this product! Benefit's lip stains are pretty well-known, so it was about time they released a tinted lip balm version of them. This is based on their PosieTint, but instead it's a sheerer version, and a lip balm (genius, I know). This is almost a clear lip balm, but it gives the slightest tint of color and shine. I was pleasantly surprised by how moisturizing it was, since tinted lip balms aren't always the most hydrating, but this made my lips soft and smooth. I know when I go back to school in two weeks, this is going to be one of my go-to lip products. 

(Full-size [12oz]: $22 ) (Sample size [15ml]: $1.85)

I received the perfume in last month's Birchbox, so I'm excited to have the matching lotion now! I don't know who decided this was a "body cream," because it's actually the lightest lotion I've ever used, but scented lotions aren't exactly made for their moisturizing properties anyway. Hello is definitely a spring/summer fragrance for me, so now I can layer the perfume and lotion samples I have for double the fragrance and double the fun.

(FULL-SIZE [5ml]: $11)

This is apparently from "The Rapture Collection," which the info card says $10 but on the website is listed as $11 (weird). I'm just really amazed that this is the full-size, since brands like Essie and OPI go for about $8 for .5oz, but this is $11 and just barely a third of that size. Madness, I tell you! If the formula is anything like the Ruffian polish I got in my September box, I'll be pleased. The formula is really nice, and for someone like me who's never used up a whole bottle of nail polish (only top/base coat), it will last me awhile. Still, come on man!

RUFFIAN Dressing Room Nail Lacquer Remover Towelette
(Full-size [10 towelettes]: $12) (Sample size [1 towelette]: $1.20)

Anyone who received a Ruffian polish this month also got one of Ruffian's nail polish removing towelettes a bonus. I love free bonuses! Technically, I was also able to review this for points on the Birchbox website, which makes me happy (10 extra points!). I'll probably use this eventually, so I'll let you know when I do.

(Full-size [4.23oz]: $34 ) (Sample size [20g]: $5.95)

I'm always happy to test out a new scrub! Apparently Birchbox has been giving out this sample since 2012, so some subscribers are like "Really? You're still on this product?" I haven't received it yet, so I was fine with it, but it's just something to mention. This is a micro-fine scrub, and though I don't find it to be mind blowing, I do like it. My face feels nice and smooth after I use it, as it should after any exfoliator. I've only used it a few times so far, so I'll keep you updated!

(Full-size [2oz]: $24) (Sample size [4ml]: $1.20)

This was my "Extra" for the month, so I'm not allowed to complain about how tiny it is. This won't last me more than a few uses, since my hair is quite long (down to my belly button). I'm still working on my Beauty Protector Oil from my February Birchbox, but once I finish that I'll be sure to test this out! I've heard good things about this Agave Oil, so I expect greatness!

The Stats:
  • Benefit Posiebalm: $1.80
  • Harvey Prince Hello Creme That's Really a Lotion: $1.85
  • Ruffian Rosary, AKA the Smallest Full-Size Bottle of Nail Polish to Ever Exist: $11
  • Ruffian Nail Polish Remover Wipe: $1.20
  • Vasanti Scrub That Everyone and Their Mom Has Gotten: $5.95
  • Agave Argan Oil Sample Packet: $1.20
  • Total Box Value: $23
The Best: I'm really psyched about the Benefit Posiebalm. I don't even know why. I just love tinted lip balm, no matter how much or little it's pigmented. I just gotta catch 'em all! 

The Worst: I'll use all of these items, but it's kind of lame that they've been giving out the same Vasanti sample since 2012. I haven't ever received it before this, though, so I guess it's not so bad. Also that Harvey Prince body lotion is definitely not a cream, I don't care what anyone says. 

The Verdict: The box value was kind of a bummer since last month my box was worth nearly $40. However, I didn't get any duds in this box, and I know I'll use everything, so there are no complaints to be had. I'm really excited for August's box, since I picked the Laura Geller Cream Eyeshadow as my choice product this month, and you guys know how I feel about cream eyeshadow.

What did you get in your July Birchbox?

Disclaimer: I am not sponsored nor affiliated with Birchbox or any mentioned brands. I paid for this Birchbox myself, as I always do, because I am an independent woman. BAM. 

Let's be friends!