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Birchbox January 2015 Geared Up for Winter

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You all know I love Birchbox. It is my favorite subscription, because at $10 a month for 5 samples, they’re only $2 each. Of the $2 per item boxes, this is the best I’ve tried. Most months, I get at least three samples I am excited to try. This month, I have my usual three and one that surprised me a bit.

Every month, Birchbox allows you to pick one sample from a choice of 3-4, pick an entire box where you know what all five will be from a 1-2 custom curated boxes or be surprised by all 5. I have yet to pick the custom curated box, because none have appealed to me yet. That could change in a few days. Birchbox sends an email to peek in on the upcoming items via a video they’ve put together. Every time I watch a video, I am in awe by how much fun they look like they’re having. It must be a really fun place to work. Being able to choose a sample is my favorite aspect of Birchbox, which is the best addition to the subscription.

Birchbox January 2015

The problem for me is I always want more than one of the sample items, so I have a hard time choosing. This month was no different. I love moisturizers, so I was amped that we got to choose one for our sample. Most boxes give you facial moisturizers, so I have way too many.  My body on the other hand is a lot bigger than my face.  I can never have too many of those. Plus, my skin is very dry. Although body moisturizers are a lot cheaper meaning lower value than facial moisturizers, I tend to use those samples more giving me better value on the item. I’ve joked about slathering my body in facial moisturizers to use them before they expire, but I never actually would. I’d gift them before “wasting” them.

Birchbox January 2015

The body moisturizer that appealed to me most is the Essential Elements Wake up Rosemary. At 1.5 ounces, this adorable bottle is worth $3.56. It smells like the kind of aromatherapy lotion that will clear your sinuses. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but the smell does last a while. I find the lotion itself a little thin, so I will not use it for winter. The irony of having to put it away for winter is that my sinuses need more assistance in the winter than they do in the summer. My dry skin wins this battle though, so away it goes. If anyone wants to know more about it, ask me in July.

The cutest little bar of soap I’ve ever seen that was not carved into some special shape is next. It is Sumbody Soap in Tuscan Orange. I am obsessed with anything having an orange scent, so it came as no surprise that I love the scent. This is a natural handmade soap designed to clean without stripping the body of natural oils. This is the point where I will remind everyone that Birchbox is the best subscription box at listening to profiles. They hear me when I say I have dry skin. This slice of heaven in rectangular form is worth $1.98. It is not likely I will get to sample it, because my husband who has been complaining about his soap is eyeballing it. He pays for all of my pretties, so I will not fight him if he wants it. I love him so much that I offered it willingly.

The third item that excites me is the Manna Kadar Lip Locked in the shade All of You. My lips are cracked right now, thanks Winter. This matte, lip stain with the gorgeous color is designed to keep lips smooth. That is something I plan on testing when my lips mend. The sample is worth $1.99, but it is something I plan on using if it works, which equals great value to me.

Manna Liplocked

The next sample actually bummed me out a little. It is Curl Keeper Ultimate Hold with Frizz Control. Why do sample curl products frequently come in one ounce foils or cardboards? I have received numerous samples like this and have yet to finish one before the product dries out. For one, I do not have curly hair. It is slightly curly on the underside and wavy at best on top. No amount of product can help me fake a natural looking curl. After trying to fake curls, it takes me a while to work up the desire to try it again. Also, I am not a giant. Despite having long hair, I cannot even come close to using one of these in a single use. Foils and cardboards should be single use, right? For those thinking, why doesn’t she put the unused product in a Ziploc? I do, but sadly even Ziplocs cannot help the poor design of these packages keep the product fresh.

The other thing that bummed me out was it is the second time in six months I got a one ounce curly hair foil/cardboard from Birchbox. I started doubting if my profile was being read after all, because I certainly never told Birchbox that I have curly hair. People tend to blow dry more often in winter, so this product made sense in that way. Someone reminded me that I do have frizzy hair and frizz is listed right in the product title. Mystery solved. Birchbox is off the hook, but I feel it needs to be mentioned that not all frizzy haired people have curly hair. Anyway, this sample comes in at $2.19. It was hard not to deduct value for cheap packaging, but I didn’t.

My final sample, the one I was the least excited about, is Miracle Skin Transformer Treat and Conceal. I am never excited to see items like this, because it is rarely a color match. Thus, it is a wasted sample on me making it a zero value item. Knowing the rest of the items would have low value, that put the idea of this box falling below $10 very possible. When I opened it and saw that it was medium, I was even more sure it would be a disaster. Usually, I would just set it aside for someone else. I prefer to give people new samples rather than used ones. However, I remember the face sample in medium while not the perfect match, thus nothing I would ever consider buying, was not hideous. As such, I swatched it. The verdict is it is a close match. Now, I just have to see if it works well to conceal. With my added winter redness, this fits right in with the winter theme of the whole box.  The value on this is $11.52

Miracle Skin Transformer Medium Concealer

The overall value of my winterized Birchbox is $21.24. Without the Miracle Skin Transformer, the value is $9.72, so I am glad I can use it. While this is one of my lower valued Birchboxes, I am happy with it. The item I was most worried about surprised me, so I will be happy if the Curl Keeper surprises me as well. If it does not, my value will still be $19.05. I will add this box to the victory column. As I’ve never had a defeat, it will join my other 11 boxes there.

My favorite thing about this membership is the site gives you 10 points for each review. With 5-7 samples a month, you can earn up to 70 points. At 100 points, you can cash them in and spend $10 on anything you want in the Birchbox shop. Even if you have 2 months in a row with only five items, you should be earning $10 every 2 months just for reviews. You get 1 point for every $1 you spend in the shop as well, so it is very easy to earn points.

Birchbox Women

If you want to subscribe, remember to look at start-up offers and all available offers. When you’re ready to spend your rewards points, remember to add your free two piece sample pack when spending $35 from the Bonus Shop. See other Birchbox Subscription articles. View my main page for the guide map to the site and deeper deal exploration.

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I'm Kimberly. Shopping is always more fun when I've found the best deal available, so I am always on the hunt. My father instilled that in me, and I love that I carry a piece of him. Sometimes, my husband and sons (12 and 7) let me shop for them, too. They do not use as many beauty products as I do. We can all benefit from nice products, even though their routine ends with moisturizer. That is when I can convince my 12-year-old to apply it.

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