I’ve been a Birchbox subscriber since February of 2014 and over 4 and a half years later, I am still happy. There have been a lot of changes over the years, but I continue to receive new things to try. Some of my favorite beauty products, which I’ve touched upon many times, are things I found in my Birchboxes that I probably never would have purchased otherwise. My September Box, from the original subscription box celebrating eight years, is another hit. All five items are new to me, and four of the five are products I am happy to try. As I’ve said many times over the years, even the ones that do not excite you upon arrival can surprise you once you try them. Thus, I would rather have a box of new items, which bring new possibilities than a box of products I’ve tried before and find okay. Granted, I always like getting duplicates of products I love, and I try to grab Real Chemistry Peels from Birchbox as often as possible. I love when it is a sample choice, because I can always use more.
Birchbox gives at least 5 deluxe beauty samples each month for $10. Some boxes have more than 5, but anything over 5 is usually a foil. Boxes get customized to your beauty profile, and you can opt out of one type of sample per box during sample choice. All boxes are a mixture of haircare, makeup, and skincare. There are times when body care items pop up, and you can select an option to receive no more than 6 fragrance vials a year in your profile. You could get a box with 2 haircare items, 2 makeup items, and 1 skincare item or any similar variety, but you will rarely see more than 2 items from any category unless the third is a foil. If you are looking for a box that is mostly makeup or mostly skincare, this is not it. Those looking for a well-rounded sample box may enjoy this subscription.
The $10 charge processes immediately for new subscribers and on the 1st in succeeding months. Boxes usually ship from the 8th through the 12th. At the end of every month (actual date varies), Birchbox will email an option to select a sample (from a choice of 3-5 items), or the featured box where you know all samples up front. Those who respond to that email can also opt out of one type of sample. If you want a sample choice and the featured box, read this article. Subscribers can review 5 samples for 10 points each once during the lifetime of the account. Those who pay full-price for their subscriptions up front get points to use toward shop purchases. People who use a discount code on up front subscriptions will not get points. No one on a month-to-month plan gets points for the subscription either. The amount spent for the subscription goes toward the $300 annual minimum to achieve Aces status.
Birchbox makes a custom box design for each month.
The first thing you normally see when you open a Birchbox is a product card. It lists the items in the box and the price to purchase the full-size.
The back of the card goes over the theme, we’re celebrating you, in honor of 8 years of Birchboxes.
Contents are loose inside the box with a single piece of black foam at the bottom. As you can imagine, fragile samples move around too much inside the box and are subject to breaking.
The three items to choose from were: the ARROW Boost Color Enhancing Lip Balm, the Avène Cleanance EXPERT Lotion, or the Oribe Mystify Restyling Spray. This was an easy decision for me, because I already own the lip balm. I selected the Oribe, but I also received the Avène. That means I got 2 of the three sample choices, which is not unusual. Those who selected the featured box got all six of these samples: thisworks® deep sleep™ pillow spray, Sunday Riley Good Genes All-in-One Lactic Acid Treatment, R+Co PARK AVE Blow Out Balm, Stila Cosmetics Stay All Day® Liquid Lipstick in Patina Shimmer, Touch in Sol No Poreblem Primer, and HUM Nutrition Hair Sweet Hair Gummies. I may end up ordering this box, because it has two things I already know I love and others I want to try. Subscribers can always purchase this curated box separately for $10 if they want that and a sample choice. Everyone else can purchase a featured box for $15.
The Box I ended up with is 58697434. It has one hair product, one skincare item, one makeup product, one makeup remover, and one perfume.
The 0.16oz Avène Cleanance EXPERT Lotion is worth $3.20. This promises to hydrate and mattify. My skin is dry, and anything that mattifies it usually dries it out. It also claims it treats acne, which I still get despite my dry, aging skin. I have never tried this before, so I will keep this. While it could surprise me, my expectations for this one are not high.
The 1.4oz Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Botanical Cleansing Oil is worth $7.59. Other than the taste of the lip balm (a massive lip balm article is also coming in a few months), I have never disliked a Kiehl’s product. I also love trying new cleansing oils, because I have not found my holy grail one yet. Cleansing oils are a great way to break up sunscreen or makeup and better for the environment than makeup wipes (which I am trying not to purchase anymore; but I do have a massive stockpile).
The 0.05oz Mellow Cosmetics Matte Liquid Lip Paint in Ibiza is worth $8. Birchbox has the full-size listed as 0.01oz. As the sample is 0.05oz, I have to assume the full-size of this is actually 0.1oz. I am not a huge liquid lipstick fan, because my lips are so dry. Despite that, I have purchased liquid lipsticks to find the one that could work for me (massive review article coming but I need a few months to test everything). Every time I receive a sample, it is one more I can test without paying full price. That makes me happy. It claims it is lightweight and comfortable, so it sounds promising.
Ibiza is a cool-toned nude. Warm tones usually work better with my skin, but I liked the way this looked in the swatch. Once I wear this, I will edit in a picture and a review.
The Oribe Mystify Restyling Spray is worth $5. I will almost always select anything from Oribe when it is a sample choice. There is nothing from the brand I dislike (so far), and all the products are so expensive. Getting to try new ones without investing in the full-size is awesome. This one is new to my collection. My hair gets really oily at the roots but is dry everywhere else. Having a product like this can allow me to only apply dry shampoo to the roots and this from the middle to the ends to revive my hair on the second day. If it works, I will enjoy putting less dry shampoo where I do not really like it as much.
The 0.04oz Proenza Schouler Arizona Eau de Parfum is worth $1.73. When it comes to perfumes, I am very picky. Most perfumes make me light-headed and my sense of smell is strong. This means I prefer to go without perfume most of the time. As such, very few of my beauty dollars get invested into perfume. For the times I do want perfume, I like reaching for samples like this or bigger bottles I receive as a GWP or in kits. Spending money on perfume is very rare, although I have done it. When this box arrived last night, I sprayed this perfume on. It was immediate delight despite an obvious floral scent, which I usually dislike. That sent me to the website to see the notes, which are white cactus flower balanced by musk. Who would have thought I would love a floral scent as much as I love this! If I work my way through this sample (that rarely happens even with ones I love), I could see myself buying this one.
This box has a $25.52 value. That brings the value of the average box for 2018 to $30.13. My personal value is also $25.52, because I will probably keep everything in it. When the box comes with new products, you never know when looking at it how it will go. It is even better when they are new things that you probably never would have tried without receiving them in your box. Whether you end up loving or hating them, the subscription gave you the discovery opportunity, and that is a beautiful thing. They are all new to my collection, and I really want to try everything but the moisturizer. Well, I’ve already tried the perfume and know I am keeping that. I have a great feeling about the cleansing oil and the hair product. The liquid lipstick is giving me good feelings, but even if it does not pan out, it is another one I got to try in my goal to find one that works well for me.
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. Tips For Getting the Best Deal lays out all the ways I know to save money at Birchbox. Product reviews do not always make it into the haul article, but you can always type the product into the search bar to see if I’ve mentioned it or reviewed it elsewhere. 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.