Blackbox by Cult Cosmetics Unboxing and Review: June 2013

I recently discovered a new nail polish subscription service – Blackbox by Cult Cosmetics. At first I thought it was a subscription ran by Cult Nail Polish but apparently they are not the same thing. So I checked out the website to read more about these “imposters”, and found out that they are a great company with big ideas to deliver runway nail and makeup looks to the public while making them affordable.

“Cult Cosmetics was created with a rebellious spirit and a big idea: take the hottest looks in nail art and makeup and make them accessible enough for everyday wear, at an everyday price. It’s working. We host the Facebook’s largest Nail Art community and were recognized by Fast Company as among the top-10 most innovative companies in style.”

– from

About Blackbox:
For $19.99 + $5.00 S&H you’ll receive seasonal colors and looks along with tips, tools and occasional bonuses every month. Each box contains 3 or more nail polishes and 2 professional tools, all full-sized. The polishes are DBP, Formaldehyde and Toluene free, and not tested on animals.
Click here to subscribe.

Special offer: Currently all new subscribers receive 50% off their first month, no special code needed.

So here are the products I received:

I like Essie polishes, and I didn’t mind that they were from past collections, but Tart Deco was surprisingly goopy. I immediately thought about Julep’s cremes, which also have awful streaky formulas. So to hide the streaks I decided to play around with the nail art tools a little bit.

 On one hand I drew random lines and dots with the Color Club nail art pen, and on the other hand I tried to make something resembling a wild pattern, which ended up looking like black worms with random polish splatters. I don’t have a steady hand so the end result was quite silly, but it was so much fun trying these new things!

The verdict: Just as promised, all products were full-sized, no complaints there. I canceled my subscription for the time being because I wanted to only buy one box to review, but I really like the idea of getting a complete nail art kit every month. I think I got my money’s worth for $15, but I’m not sure if I would pay $25 every month for past season polishes that I can find on sale at drugstores. To each their own, of course, and I’m sure some of you will disagree with me here.

What do you think about this new subscription? Are you going to try it out?

Product Retail value
Essie Funny Face $6.99
Essie Tart Deco $8.00
Color Club Almost Famous $2.67
Mash Nail Art Pen $5.99
Silver Glitter ???
Color Club Nail Striper $4.00
Box Retail Value $27.65

  • Hi,

    I would pass on this subscription. Sending out color collections from past seasons isn’t “Cutting edge from the runway”. Plus, they kinda lifted their name from another nail collection. Everything about this subscription program screams “second rate” yet they charge premium prices. Uh, no thanks.

    • I agree. I did like the products that I got, but the fact that they’re from years ago was off-putting.

  • Love that yellow! so vibrant. I have yet to find a yellow nail polish that is easy to apply.

    • I’ll try to make a couple good swatches and see if it’s any good 😉

    • Kleancolor on ebay or amazon has some good yellows

  • I’m so glad that I found your blog! I love seeing what other people got in their subscription boxes 🙂 I do subscription box reviews on my blog too and I started following you on Bloglovin. I just ordered this box and I was really curious to see a review on it. If I get the same thing as you got then I may cancel my subscription as well. They claim on their site that all polishes are current-season but if they’re not, then that’s worth it.

    • Hi, Erica!

      I followed you back, because I also love peeking in other people’s boxes 😉 I know that not everyone gets past season polishes, the girl who got me to subscribe received a polish from 2013 collection. I hope you have more luck than I did.

      Looking forward to reading your review!

  • Great review! I am very interested in this box but was waiting for some reviews to come in and I’m glad I did. Not blown away by this box though I saw another one that seemed to be better. The promo code supposedly still works though it’s not showing up for me. If I can get it to work I would probably give it a try for one month anyway. I do love subscription boxes and I adore nail polish! Great blog 🙂

    • Thanks Zoe! I also saw another review where the girl actually got a nail polish from a 2013 collection, but most of them are really outdated. Let’s just say that I like the selection but don’t like the value, and I probably won’t subscribe to this box again.

    • I see the promotion is still on, not supposed to be buying polishes in July but $15 for maybe 3 Essies is a great deal… in Canada they cost $11 plus tax each, even if it is a dated collection (just pretty sure I wouldn’t spend $25 a month for that!)

    • I got my box! 2 from 2013 collections and one from a 2012, so maybe I got lucky, plus 2 nail art pens and sequins, VERY happy with my box! I’ll be posting about it this week 🙂

  • I think I will maybe get one box for fun but yeah, $25, not worth it. Thanks so much for the review!!!

    • You’re welcome! I’m glad I was helpful 🙂 Hopefully you will get some nice polishes in yours.

  • This is a great box !
    but the price is so out of the budget

    • The concept is good, but you could get these polishes individually for a lot less. Not a great deal, after all 🙁

  • Thank you for the review! I am also going to pass, given the fact that they claim their polishes are not tested on animals. This is completely false. Essie is owned by L’oreal which DOES test. Fail. Big fail.

    • Thank you for bringing up the animal testing issue. I didn’t see them claim that their polishes are cruelty-free, but if they did, it’s definitely beyond shady.

  • Great review and I liked your nail art! The company sounds a bit shady to me as the claimed to be on the cutting edge, yet gave you old polishes. They also say all polishes are cruelty free, while most anyone in the nail world knows that Essie is not cruelty free. I will pass on this.

    • Thank you for the comment, Michelle. I agree, the colors may be all “summery” and whatnot, but it doesn’t change the fact that they’re not even close to being from current collections. And the cruelty-free issue really shocked me, it’s super lame that they lie to their customers like that.

    • i read another blogger who was going to post her review later, but she did say she got all essie polish…if they’re from past seasons, they probably get them for real cheap and then send them out in these packages…

  • i’m glad i found this review bc i was just about to order it…it’s in the cart on the site now! lol…

  • I don’t see what’s the difference price-wise. You payed $25 to purchase the box and for delivery, and the total retail price is $27.65…Pretty much the same…