Birchbox: August 2013

Birchbox: August 2013

Since it’s already August, I figured I’d finally now bring you a my Birchbox for August 2013. So the thing is, I bought a yearly subscription to Birchbox last December… and then I stopped writing reviews. Oops! The fact that I kept moving around probably didn’t help, but I have a lot of backlogged samples. At some point I’ll try to gather them all up and collect what was in my boxes to do a review, but in the mean time, have a review of my August 2013 box 54!

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Birchbox August 2013 box 54

The number of box variations are really getting up there now! So this month I receive five different product samples in my Birchbox.

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Birchbox August 2013 theme “Finishing School”

This month’s theme is “Finishing School” which I really have no clue what it means. But it featured a collaboration with Ann Taylor and gave us Ann Taylor coupons. I don’t know if they’re one-time use and if they’re stackable, but I’d like to get something. Ann Taylor clothes don’t always fit me super well since I’m a little, um, “petite” for them. I went in there once to shop but I just remember all the stuff being too big. But it’s still a nice idea to browse. I could always use more professional-type clothes.

Also, one day I will most definitely learn how to get my camera to focus on everything I want. Until then, you get magically artistic blurs.

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Caldrea Body Lotion in Tea Olive Lime

Caldrea Body Lotion in Tea Olive Lime: I’m not really sure what “tea olive lime” is supposed to smell like. I like two of those things and ambivalent on one, but overall the scent worked out well together. It smells fine, it works fine. It’s a lotion. It’s not sticky or too oily. I’m not sure I would pay this much for it, but it’s a good sample to have for a vacation or something.

Regular: $22 for 8fl oz (236mL)
Sample Value: $1.38 for 7.39mL x2 packets

APPLICATION EFFECTIVENESS SCENT TEXTURE VALUE
RECOMMENDATION:  | WOULD REPURCHASE: Maybe when I’m out of lotion in 5 years

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Captain Blankenship Mermaid Mane Sea Salt Spray and Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso

Captain Blankenship Mermaid Mane Sea Salt Spray: A lot of subs have been sending out Sea Salt Sprays lately in their boxes, and I have been wanting to try one but none every opportunely came my way. I was very much looking forward to trying and after a lot of trial and trial I can report…

Don’t do it.

It does absolute nothing for my hair. It does not give me waves, wet, damp or dry. It does not make waves I already put into my hair through braids wavier or actually help them stay. It does not even reduce frizz.

The only good things I have to say about this product are 1) it smells kind of good and 2) it doesn’t make your hair any worse. my hair has no additional texture from this product. Like none. Which also means at least it’s not sticky and hard. I thought possibly it was just my hair because my hair is both very thick and heavy, but a lot of other reviewers report the same thing. Product fail.

Regular: $22 for 4fl oz
Sample Value: $5.50 for ~1fl oz

APPLICATION EFFECTIVENESS SCENT TEXTURE VALUE
RECOMMENDATION:  | WOULD REPURCHASE: No

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Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso swatch

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso: I’ll admit, this product I was both most excited and most hesitant to try. Let’s just say I got burned by the Revlon liquid lipstick a couple months ago, and I was afraid this would be bad too. (Actually, I figured out how to make the Revlon lipstick less awful, but that’s for another post).

Stila in Beso is a bright, bright red. It’s very much a true red and pretty flattering for any skintone, as long as you like red. And I like red lipstick. I was most afraid that it was going to dry out my lips and that the texture would be horrible which is what happened with the Revlon. I tend to lick my lips a lot — unconsciously an mostly against my will. Basically I like lipstick and am simultaneously the worst at wearing it.

The lipstick’s texture is fine. It stays pretty well; I put it to the ultimate test and had lunch in it and it was mostly in tact after. The application is a bit of a nightmare for a first time try though. Basically, it’s best to use a Q-Tip since you don’t actually need much of the product to get good coverage… but any applicator that needs a Q-Tip to help the application probably needs adjustment.

Regular: $22 for 3mL
Sample Value: $7.33 for 1mL

APPLICATION LONGEVITY PIGMENT TEXTURE VALUE
RECOMMENDATION: | WOULD REPURCHASE: Possibly

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Coastal Scents quad in Pale Nude, Gypsy Blue, Chocolatier, Dark Chocolate and Birchbox Bobby Pins in white

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Coastal Scents quad in Pale Nude, Gypsy Blue, Chocolatier, Dark Chocolate: So I’ve previously reviewed Coastal Scents for my ipsy October 2012 bag, and it’s a fine product. They’re not the best, most pigmented eyeshadows ever but they’re not terrible. For the price, they’re excellent, but I would just not choose them in the first place despite the price. I was fine using up the one I was already sent since I liked that colour set, but this one I’m really not feeling.

You’ll have to excuse me for not swatching — I’ll probably put these up for trade. Mostly I’m disappointed to receive a product I’ve already tried… especially one that I’d consider a little beneath Birchbox (forgive me for being a snob). BB put these up on their site as $10-15 more than what the Coastal Scents website sells them for too, if that’s any indicator. There are plenty of eyeshadows I’ve woul’dve liked to try more than this.

Also, I’m not entirely sure how I feel being sent a product using “gypsy” to describe a colour…

Regular: $1.95 for 0.05oz singles (less expensive in sets)
Sample Value: $2.73 for 0.07oz

APPLICATION LONGEVITY PIGMENT TEXTURE VALUE
RECOMMENDATION: | WOULD REPURCHASE: No

Terrible webcam shot of me wearing the Birchbox pins \o\

Birchbox Bobby Pins in white: Sorry for the webcam pic — I tried to take a picture with my camera and gave up. Also my skin is really awful right now. Only my webcam’s crappy quality is hiding it.

So I really wanted these last month when they came out, and I had one of the few boxes that they were not in. I heard through the grapevine that the store ran out of the pins and weren’t going to carry more so I sadly thought I wouldn’t have the chance to get any but looks like CS was wrong! \o/

These are a little more expensive than I’d normally pay for bobby pins, but they’re also very fashionable and cute pins. And if you can see, they’re also very large. Like super super huge. I actually kind of dislike how large they are because they’re just so… obstructive. Also their size prevents them from crossing which would be the cutest.

I really wanted the green ones because green is my favourite colour, but the white ones are cute too. These are definitely better suited for decoration than actual pinning up though.

Regular: $5 for 6 bobby pins
Sample Value: $1.67 for 2 bobby pins

RECOMMENDATION: | WOULD REPURCHASE: As a cart stuffer, possibly

This box contained approximately $18.61 worth of samples, plus $5 in points towards the Birchbox store. I paid $110 for a year’s of boxes, but they’re usually $10/month. While the value isn’t as high as it could be, I enjoyed this box more than I have for higher valued boxes in the past since I was interested in more of the products — and I genuinely mean that. I think I had about $26 worth of product last month and I hated the box because my profile got switched around accidentally by the system so I pretty much got zero products I wanted.

SAMPLE SIZE DIVERSITY QUALITY QUANTITY VALUE
OVERALL IMPRESSION:

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