Wednesday, December 19, 2012

December 2012 Birchbox Review

My hilarious friend / fellow beauty nerd Carla (@charliesue) asked me what I thought about this month's birchbox, and I totally ignored her so now she gets all of my thoughts here.  This is why I will never be good at Twitter - not enough characters!

But I can sum it up in 11 characters before I ramble in greater length:

It was meh.

So Ipsy for the win in December.  But we knew that already, right?

Date of arrival: I can't remember exactly, maybe the 12th?

Packaging: BB had a fancy new box for the holidays, which apparently is the first time they ever changed the little brown box itself.  Cute.  They also included a gift tag.  Why do you keep insisting I give away all of my goodies, Birchbox???

Theme: This month's theme is "All Wrapped Up", which I get from the packaging, but not so much the samples.  The samples this month are supposed to "help you look and feel your best", as does the Rent the Runway promo (code BRCHBX50 gets you $50 off a $125 rental).  I feel like they kind of phoned in the theme.  

Contents / mini reviews: Eye gels, chocolate, shampoo, hand salve, blush.  I was so underwhelmed I have yet to try out most of the products.  

I am, however, fairly excited to try out the frownies eye gels.  I am envisioning a luxurious bath with these on my eyes and earplugs in my ears, perhaps while eating the chocolate.  

I have some other Nick Chavez stuff from my BeautyFix days (I really miss that sub, cancelled only due to $$ and sample overflow), but I haven't tried any of it out.  I feel kind of meh about getting shampoo samples; I never rush to try them out, I just use them up one at a time for travel and in my gym bag.   

My cuticles are always crazy dry in the winter, so I did try out the J.R. Watkins hand salve.  I prefer the Lush lemony flutter cuticle butter, Burt's Bees Lemon cuticle balm, and Julep cuticle oil, and pretty much any other cuticle product I own over this.  It was really wet and took forever to sink in.  Would definitely not repurchase.  F

I didn't try out theBalm's Hot Mama blush yet, as I have apparently lost all of my brushes (and because Captain RosaceaFace is still scared of blush).  I am always excited to get theBalm in my box - they have quality stuff and the packaging is just so darn cute! 
Value:  Birchbox really cheaped out on this one - $17.62.  D

Click to enlarge
Overall impression of the box:  I got Box 7, you can see all of the boxes here.  I think my dream box for the month is Box 23 - totally would love the atomizer + theBalm + benefit, and would prefer a dry shampoo over the regular kind.  Box 7 didn't offend me - I was excited about two products, hated one, and didn't care about two.  I really, really, really wish they would stop giving us chocolate.  I know it's an extra, but I really don't want food.  And this was a cheapo box, so I'd give it a C-.  

Overall impression of the service:  No change since November, B+.

Which box did you get?  Love or love to hate Birchbox?  Any of these products intrigue you?   

Don't forget to enter the Julep contest for $432 worth of polish and products here (be sure to mention the Diniwilks!!!!), and to stop on over to my contest afterwards.  Ends 12/31.


Suzanne said...

I got box 20 and it was meh. I haven't tried any of the stuff yet, although I do like cuticle cream. Someone gave me a subscription as a gift and although I really like GETTING the box each month I don't think I would subscribe on my own. But I'm not a make-up/product junkie like you are :)

Ginger said...

I got box 3 and I really liked everything in it (except the "extra" lotion I got, but that was only because the smell gave me a headache). At first I felt like it was pretty chintzy (only 4 products?), but I've liked everything in it, so better to have 4 things I like than 1 I like and 5 I don't?

You DID convince me to get the ipsy bag, and I'm torn. It basically gets the win for me for the eyeliner, eyeshadow, and bag alone, but the lipgloss is such a terrible color on me as to be laughable, and the serum made me break out. I didn't get the naked skin stuff (you really ARE an influencer!). But I will say, I'm a big fan of the service--DARN YOU for getting me addicted to another monthly makeup thing!

Shannon said...

I got box #3. It was ok. I wasn't overly excited about it, but I can't say I hated it either. I did like the lipgloss a ton. I also got Ipsy and I agree with lipgloss in there being a bit...too much. Also, can I just ask why EVERY sub box wants to send me lipgloss? I love them, but dang. In 3 months I've gotten 5-6 new lipglosses. Also, Ipsy, I love you, but you got to stop sending me eyeliner! That's three months in a row. I need an eyeliner break.

andreaunplugged said...

I thought both last month and this months boxes were pretty meh. I can't even remember what all I got in this months box, but it's all still sitting in the box. I know I got the Mary-lou-minizer and the shampoo. I think if January doesn't wow me, I'm gonna cancel and maybe subscribe to one of your other recommendations.

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

I didn't realize sample subscriptions are the new hot deals website (as in, lots of people are offering it, lots of people are doing it). I'd be a really bad subscriber, though, because I sort of loathe sample-sized anything. Either it sucks (and I feel bad for getting rid of unused product, so I hold onto it forever) or it's so good and there's not nearly enough of it!!

Not Insane...Promise! said...

I got Box 20 and I didn't LOVE it, like I have my past boxes, but I didn't hate it, either. The ShowStoppers are unlikely to ever be used, but I didn't mind everything else. I also got an extra Benta Berry, probably accidentally-one was wrapped up with my Watkins-but considering how small it is, I'm glad I got two because the first is barely enough for me to use it, let alone figure out whether I like it. I shouldn't have previously said I was thrilled with my Birchboxes-I jinxed myself!!

Jessica said...

It's definitely time for me to cancel my Birchbox, since it arrived a few weeks ago and is still sitting on my counter unopened.

Glam Wife said...


I like how you have done this review. I am new to this blogging business! How did you find all the boxes being sent out for that month? I'm not sure whether I should look or not because I no doubt would always want the other boxes!

If you would like to see my first BirchBox review it is here

xo Glam Wife

Laura Diniwilk said...

Hi, Emma! Every month, Zadidoll posts the Birchbox spoilers in a separate thread over at makeuptalk (right here: