Wednesday, January 16, 2013

January 2013 Birchbox Review

Birchbox made me laugh with their choices for me this month, as there was a clear theme.  Let's see if you guess it before I tell you.

Date of arrival: January 14, 2013

Packaging: The usual.  But I think the outside box was more of a barbie pink than the usual signature BB pink.  Probably just a weird batch.  The spillable stuff was in a little cardboard box instead of just being wrapped in tissue paper, which takes away from the presentation but is definitely an improvement.  

Theme: Best year ever!  Not the most original January theme, but unlike last month, I felt like BB actually put some thought into the theme.  There was a giant fold out thingie with beauty related resolutions on one side and Best Year Ever product picks on the other side.  You get 25 bonus points when you shop these products by going here, spending $25, and using the code BestYearEver at checkout.  If I were participating, I would pick the Eyeko liner and the benefit skincare stuff - $27 for both, and they are amazing products.

Contents / mini reviews: Anti-aging hand cream, Ageless perfume, leave-in hair cream, the world's tiniest mascara, and a mattifying moisturizer in an anti-aging formula.  No extra this month, which is kind of weird.  First time ever, I think.  

Yay for natural lighting, the clouds actually lifted for half a day!
Did you catch the REAL theme of this month's box?  I feel like BB is screaming at me "HEY, LAURA - WE THINK YOU ARE OLD!!!"  I mean, seriously.  I know I'm no spring chicken at 33, but I don't really think that warrants 3 out of 5 anti-aging products, especially since my profile says I don't want anti-aging stuff.  Give me a freaking break!

So far I have tried out the hand cream and the perfume. 

BB has yet again given us an outdated product with the alessandro International HAND!SPA Age Complex Cream Rich hand cream.  If you go to their website, it's now being marketed as HANDS!UP instead.  It's not that I am against beauty subscriptions pawning old crap on us per se (as long as it's not expired), I just wish they would be up front about it.  Put it in fine print that it's older packaging and include the date this batch was made or something.  Just tell us the truth.  

The hand cream itself is okay.  It's lightly scented...I can't really make out what the scent is but it's  neither offensive nor particularly nice.  Maybe the slightest whiff of bananas?  It's just a standard white lotion, it's not super creamy and thick in texture.  It is comprised of pearl protein extract and hyaluronic acid...I'd have to use over time to see if I prefer these ingredients over the "rare African plant extracts" in my current hand cream (Julep's Age Defying Hand Brightener).  After just one use, I'd give it a C+

The Harvey Prince Ageless perfume is right up my alley.  I am a citrus fan and the main note is pink grapefruit.  I can also smell the mango, but it's harder to pick out the pomegranate and jasmine.  It's supposed to make me feel "young, happy, slim, and beautiful".  Great, BB doesn't just think I'm old, I'm also sad, fat, and ugly.  I shouldn't make too much fun, it's kind of sweet that two sons crafted this scent for their mother.  The sample packaging is great - it's a large enough size to not make me rage and it has a spray pump.  More perfume samples like this, BB!  I'm not madly in love with it in an "Oh I need to buy this right now" sort of way, but I'll use up the sample and enjoy it.  B+

Value.  Totally SWAGged it (Scientific Wild-Ass Guess), as there was no size listed for the perfume or mascara.  Based on my estimates, the value of this box was $30.15.  B--

Click to enlarge
Overall impression of the box: You can see all of the boxes here.  I got box 32 but with different Kerastase stuff.  There are a ton of repeats this month from last month, so if BB makes any kid of effort to not repeat, it really limited my options.  I would have LOVED box 4 or 5 to try out more Oscar Blandi and to get a backup Eyeko liner (I just bought one with my points and I love it).  Box 24 is pretty sweet too; I love my amika hair oil so would be interested in trying out the shampoo.  After looking at all of the other options, I definitely think this was the punishment many people got the Eyeko liner, Oscar Blandi, and Embryolisse moisturizer (which I have been dying to try).   I feel a bit miffed at getting the old lady box, think the teeny mascara is kind of pointless, and am annoyed at the foil packets.  This wasn't HORRIBLE, just not as good as most others.  C-

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

Which box did you get?  Love it or hate it?  Discuss :)

Like what you see?  If you plan to sign up, I would love it if you use my referral link!  Birchbox gives 50 points for each referral.  


Katie Wilkes said...

Your box is completely different than mine! I got #4 clarifying shampoo, Embryolisse moisturizer, tiny aerie shimmer fragrance sample, the balm hot mama blush, and one the stripper to go nail polish remover packet. The Embryolisse is amazing. The small tube is only $16, so I think I'm going to buy it.

Not Insane...Promise! said...

Cancelled my BB after Brian got me Ipsy, and after seeing this I'm kind of glad I did. I don't necessarily hate this box, but I don't really want to try anything that's in it, either, except maybe the HAND!SPA, but I have too much of that kind of thing already. Hopefuly Ipsy will sarisfy my need to get endless crap that I don't really And you're not old, Birchbox is just an idiot and I kind of suspect they may have a problem getting products these days and are throwing in whatever they get.

Almost There said...

I love that you share these. It lets me slightly live through you. I don't feel like I miss BB yet, nothing has jumped out at me.

Leigh said...

I actually liked my box this month... I got #22 (Skinny Chic perfume, Hot Mama Blush, Pur-lisse moisturizer, Rahua shampoo/conditioner, and Eyeko liner in Black.) I got a crappy box last month, and I changed my beauty profile so now I'm an adventurous, rich 18-year old and voila! Awesome box. I hope your next month is better!

Suzanne said...

I got box 19 and it's my favorite one so far. The shampoo is kind of insane (like rubbing honey into my head because it's SO concentrated) but the perfume and the eye cream are FANTASTIC.

I didn't even know there was a beauty profile, but I'm totally changing mine to send me ALL the anti aging stuff beacause SRSLY where did these wrinkles come from?