Saturday, October 15, 2016

September 2016 Birchbox - Go Forth And Multitask - Unboxing & Review!

For some reason, it seems like September was the 'multi-tasking' month for subscription boxes. Granted, 'multi-tasking' is a pretty easy theme for a makeup/beauty box, and lots of boxes share similar themes during holidays and certain times of the year, but I don't really see the connection between the month of September and multi-tasking products. Very intriguing!
Almost all the products this month are relevant to me and something I'm interesting in trying (I'm not going to be able to try the conditioner and styling cream because they have argan oil; if they didn't I would totally try them out), but this box really fell flat value-wise. Hmm.

Birchbox is a $10 a month beauty/makeup subscription service that includes five deluxe/full size products. You're not supposed to get foil packet samples, but Birchbox went through some changes recently, and I've gotten packet (and close-to-packet) size samples. Birchbox still has a rewards program, but it's been significantly downsized and now you can no longer review your samples for points (you can still review them, though) and you only earn points for purchases or referrals.
The box this month is kind of...blah. It has a confetti-esque design on the lid and the box itself is black with random white lettering. I feel like I've seen this box before and it honestly feels more like a New Year's box.
One of the more subtle changes to the Birchbox subscription service is the new type of info card; they're bigger (about the size of the box itself) but a lot flimsier; not sure if this was design choice, a way to save money, or a change in printers/manufacturers. Not a big deal, but the flimsier paper does make it feel a little less professional.
The back side of the info card lists all the products with the price of the full size item and a small informative blurb. Even though the cards are bigger, you get the same amount of information, and Birchbox fills the extra space with an advertisement or special promotion.
The first sample this month is a product I'm quite excited to try, but also one of the most disappointing due to it's size and amount of uses; it's barely more than a foil packet. This is the Bioderma Sebium H2O, a micellar water cleanser specifically formulated for oily/acne-prone skin. Bioderma is basically the brand that started the whole micellar water trend and it used to be pretty annoying to get your hands on in the US (now it's readily available, along with all the other micellar waters on the market). I've never tried Bioderma, but I love micellar waters and I've always intended to try the 'original'. You get very little product to try in this sample, but the worst part is that it's not resealable. I can probably get a few uses out of it, but I'm going to have to be careful with how and where I store it to make sure it doesn't spill or get contaminated. This product isn't even that expensive, so I don't know why Birchbox couldn't come up with a sample that was in an actual bottle. The full size of this product is 500mL for $16.90, making this 10mL sample worth about $0.34.
Next up I got a sample of the Coola Classic Face Sport SPF 50 White Tea. This is a pretty standard sunscreen (though it is mostly organic and it includes some skincare ingredients), but I like Coola's products (except the cucumber stuff, but that's because I hate the scent of cucumber) and I'm almost always happy to get more. I also like that Birchbox included a sunscreen in a fall season box because, while many people associate sunscreen with the summertime, sun protection is an all-year concern. The full size is 1.7 oz for $32, making this 0.17 oz sample worth about $3.20.
This is the Milk Makeup Lip + Cheek in Perk, and it was my sample choice this month. If memory serves, all three sample choice products were from Milk makeup. I went with this product since I thought I'd get the most use out of it (the other two were a mascara and bronzer stick), but I really wish that they had sampled the holographic highlighter stick.
This is a fairly standard lip and cheek stick, but it does apply well and the color is nice. Birchbox sells three colors, Perk, Rally, and Swish (Sephora sells one more called Quickie), and Perk is a coral with a hint of shimmer.
I've tried a few lip and cheek tints and more often than not, texture- and pigment-wise they're better for one type of application over the other, but the balmy texture and sheer pigmentation of this one look equally good on cheeks and lips. The full size is $24 for 1 oz, making this 0.1 oz sample worth about $2.40.
Out of all the samples in this box, this is the one that intrigued me the most. This is the R+Co Analog Cleansing Foam Conditioner. I'm kind of upset this has argan oil since I'm really, really curious about this product. At first, I thought this was like a dry conditioner, which is something I've used before, but it's actually like a 2-in-1 shampoo conditioner that's foamy; you apply it to damp hair just like regular shampoo and conditioner and rinse it out. I haven't tried, nor seen, anything like this before (I've seen cleansing conditioners, but nothing that foams), and again, I'm pretty sad I can't try it out. The full size is 6 oz for #29, making this 1.5 oz sample worth about $7.25.

Lastly, I got a sample of the Rene Furterer Karinga Hydrating Styling Cream. This is another product that I am unable to try since it has argan oil and, like the cleansing conditioner, I wish that I could. I'm always looking for a good styling cream, and I'm especially interesting in finding ones without silicone. This product has a lot of hydrating ingredients, including coconut oil and shea butter, and I'm sure it would have worked well with my dry, frizzy hairs. Sigh. The full size is 150mL for $28, making this 15mL sample worth about $2.80.

Overall, I got four deluxe samples and one sample that was basically a foil packet with a total value of about $15.99, which is incredibly low for this type of subscription. I'm not really sure how I feel about this box: I think the products that were sampled are interesting and mostly relevant to me, but I can't use two of them at all because they have an ingredient I'm allergic to (if I wasn't, I would happily use all five products in this box, which doesn't happen all that often). I've gotten boxes that were technically worth more, but included products that weren't relevant to me and that I likely wouldn't use. So where does the value of a box really come from: the monetary value of the products, or the personal value? I would never want to pay more money than the monetary value of the products, but it's an interesting question of value that I'm not sure I have an answer for yet. Hmm...

Thanks for reading! <3

No comments:

Post a Comment