Birchbox Unboxing and Review: December 2013

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The Holiday-themed December Birchbox is all about celebrating the end of the year, and putting an end to that age-old debate: sparkle or shine? Seems like all subscribers will get something shiny, glittery, or something that enhances their natural sparkle.

Birchbox is a subscription service that delivers a box of luxury samples to your doorstep every month. Each box is customized to match your beauty profile to ensure you get the samples you want. You will usually get 4-6 samples and sometimes even full-sized products! The samples vary from make-up and skincare, to food and beauty accessories, and each box is carefully hand-wrapped. At $10/month Birchbox is one of the cheapest monthly beauty subscriptions out there, the value of each box usually ranges from at least $15 and can be as high as $60. They also have a nice rewards program, where for each product survey you complete you get 10 points, every 100 points earns you $10 in Birchbox credits which you can redeem in their online store for full-sized products. 
If you would like to use my referral link then click here to join Birchbox. Thank you!

Number 4 Non-Aerosol Hairspray – I don’t use hairspray very often, but if I did I would always buy non-aerosol ones, like this sample I got, because they’re better for the environment and because I don’t have to inhale that gas in addition to already not-so-healthy hairspray solution. This is a pretty generous travel size that I can put in my makeup bag for on the go fixes.

Camille Beckman Glycerine Hand Therapy in Midnight Monarch – The first thing I noticed about this hand cream is the fragrance – very deep, complex, dark and spicy. I don’t want to label it as an “old lady” scent because that would be rude, but it has some maturity to it, and those kinds of fragrances just don’t suit my carefree nature. As a hand cream it was somewhat above average, it was definitely more moisturizing than some of the cheaper brands I tried, but it was nowhere close to being as good as my current favorites from L’Occitane and Caudalie. Btw, I love that butterfly on the package, I think it’s so pretty!

Jouer Moisturizing Lip Gloss in Pink Glace – Jouer products were a hit and a miss for me, same with this lip gloss. It’s non-sticky and has some nice sparkle to it, which will look very pretty when layered over a lipstick. Other than that, it’s a fairly average lip gloss, and I can find this same quality at any price range. I would probably be raving about it if I didn’t already try so many glosses with much better formulas.

Eslor Skincare System – I was a bit bummed to receive foil samples, but when I tried them all, I really wished I had more. The cleanser is very concentrated, and a little goes a loooong way. The scrub smells absolutely heavenly – like ripe almonds. Even though the product description says that the scrub is non-abrasive, that isn’t true: it has pretty big exfoliating chunks that can scratch the skin if you’re not careful. The mask was absolutely divine, it calmed my skin pretty much instantly, and all I could feel during and after was comfort. And the moisturizer is another great addition to the routine, it’s very soothing and rich, but not too greasy. Overall, I’m very impressed with Eslor, and I would buy all of these products, except for the scrub.

Fatty Sundays Gourmet Chocolate Covered Pretzels – This was a tiny little sample of gourmet chocolate-dipped pretzels, and considering how cheap they are, Birchbox could have thrown in a few more. I got to try the Toffee Crunch variety, and it was pretty good.

[Extra] Birchbox Cellphone Wipe – A random bonus promoting the Birchbox iPhone app. I switched to Android last month, but I’ll still use the wipe, because it’s small and convenient 🙂

This box has some items I loved and others that I did not care about. I was mostly happy to be introduced to Eslor, and that mask is probably my favorite product from the sample kit, so I guess I know what I will be saving up my Birchbox points for.

What came in your box this month? Have you tried any of the products I got?

Product Retail value
Number 4 Non-Aerosol Hairspray $4.50
Camille Beckman Glycerine Hand Therapy $1.16
Jouer Moisturizing Lip Gloss $9.41
Eslor Skincare System $15.43
Fatty Sundays Gourmet Chocolate Covered Pretzels $0.55
Box Retail Value $31.05