Sephora 2019 Birthday Gift Review, Drunk Elephant – Is It Worth the Hype?

The 2019 Sephora Birthday gifts have left some Beauty Insider members feeling less than thrilled. I’ve tested the Drunk Elephant products in the boxed birthday set and am ready to offer my review. Why did I start with Drunk Elephant? Of all four gifts available this year, I was most interested in this one. It also has the highest value. See my Sephora 2019 Birthday Gifts article for an overview of all items and all values. Everyone with a Beauty Insider account gets a birthday gift offer, so sign up if you have not already. There is no purchase required to pick up a gift in store, but you must make a purchase to redeem it online. I was able to trade products with a friend who has a January birthday to bring you this review. See my 2019 Sephora Birthday Gift Reviews for Kat Von DMilk Makeup, and Jo Malone

Stop by my Birthday Beauty Deals page (if you have a birthday coming soon), because other retailers have offers as well. I also reviewed the Sephora 2019 Birthday gift from Kat Von D. My next review on Milk Makeup (the next one that interests me) will come in March around my birthday. If people have interest in the Kat Von D gift, I can review the items separately (because I already own them). Otherwise, I will have to wait until my son’s birthday in December or to arrange a trade with someone for the official Kat Von D Sephora birthday gift. Something tells me that birthday present will not get much interest this year.

2019 Sephora Event Calendar

I have one timeline where I list all major: Promotions, Sales, Deals, GWP, Promo Codes, and Events. Those who want to see an overall idea of what to expect this year should stop by. See where this Sephora Birthday Gift lines up with others on the calendar. You can also visit my Sephora retailer page to see active and upcoming offers of all types.

2019 Sephora Birthday Gift from Drunk Elephant

The Drunk Elephant gift set includes 2 pieces.

  • 0.5 oz Protini™ Polypeptide Cream ($20.12)
  • 1 oz Beste™ No.9 Jelly Cleanser ($6.80)

The sample sizes are generous, so it is no surprise that the gift has a $26.92 value. As I mention above, this is the most valuable gift Sephora is offering for 2019.

Value is not the only reason I wanted this one first. Drunk Elephant is an incredibly hyped brand. Though I have tried some products, I have not found any deserving of the hype yet. With two new items in this birthday set, I have two more opportunities to see if these products are as good as their reputation.

For those thinking I already received this moisturizer in my Sephora Play Box, believe me, I am with you. The one I received in my July 2018 Play Box was 0.17oz. At 0.5oz, this is 3x the size. That size difference and knowing the cleanser did not exist in my collection is the reason I wanted this gift so much. A 0.17oz moisturizer will typically only give me 4-5 uses. It lets me “play,” but I sometimes need more product to make a purchase decision. I wish the Play Box gave bigger samples, but that is a complaint for another day.

The packaging is sleek, but it hardly screams luxury. That’s because Drunk Elephant invests more money into ingredients than packaging leaving the consumer with more quality products. I really love the plain packaging with the twist up top on the cleanser, because I know it will not leak or have water enter around the cap.

The Protini Cream is not as rich as the Lala Retro Whipped Cream, which I will touch upon again in the review below. I expected the jelly cleanser to have a jelly texture. It has a gel texture, so it is not what I expected at all.

Sephora Birthday Gift Drunk Elephant Review

The DRUNK ELEPHANT Beste™ No. 9 Jelly Cleanser claims it is an innovative jelly cleanser that removes all traces of makeup, excess oil, pollution, and any other grime from the day. It is free of SLS, fragrance, and essential oils, which makes it non-irritating, non-sensitizing, and appropriate for all skin. My skin does not react to it, and I enjoy the fresh gentle scent. Fragrance is so heavy in products these days that you almost forget what clean scents smell like. If that is what you are searching for, this is it.

It has a nice lather (as long as I use a lot of product), because the lather is weak when I use the amount I was using with the face wash in my shower. That helps my face feel really clean, but it never feels stripped. You will not experience the squeaky clean feeling with this, but does it really clean? When I use my trusted micellar water after using this (to test its effectiveness), I can confirm this removes most of the grime from the day, as promised. This does not remove all of my makeup, but I have never tried a cleanser that does. If I use this after my usual first step, I get very little residual makeup on my cotton round when I do my micellar water test. When I only used this to wash my face, I had a lot of makeup on my cotton round during the test.

The verdict on this cleanser is it is good, but I am unsure it is worth of its $32 price tag. My skin is dry, so I prefer richer cleansers. Then again, I also like a cleanser that leaves me with squeaky clean skin despite knowing they strip the oils from my skin. When it comes to cleanser, I am an enigma.

The Drunk Elephant Protini™ Polypeptide Cream claims it is a protein moisturizer that combines an unprecedented array and concentration of actives for improvement in the appearance of skin’s tone, texture, and firmness. I have not been using this long, but I have not noticed any difference in the way my skin looks. If it looks any better by the time I finish the sample, I will come back and edit this. Until then, I can only tell whatever effects this has, if any, are long-term. It is a nice moisturizer for the day, but I prefer something more rich at night.

I really wish the cream we got for the birthday gift was the Lala Retro™ Whipped Cream instead. It was in my December 2018 foil challenge, and I loved it. A single foil cannot get me to run out and spend $60, but it was enough for me to know I prefer that to this. Despite only using that once and using the one in this birthday gift many times, I have a better opinion on that one.

The verdict on this moisturizer is it is okay, but I think it is not worth $68. That could change as I use it more and see if it has any long-term effects. My skin prefers richer moisturizers, but this one does keep its moisture from one wash to the next.

Overall, my opinion on the brand remains unchanged. I have yet to sample anything that makes me think Drunk Elephant is worth the hype. Though I have enjoyed tiny samples of the Lala Retro™ Whipped Cream and the Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum, I have not been compelled to purchase them at their outrageous prices. Maybe, the C Firma Serum, which is the one everyone talks about will finally reel me in. That is next on my list of products to try.

Sephora.com, Inc.

What are your thoughts on this Sephora Drunk Elephant Birthday Gift? Let me know below. Sephora does not inform any Beauty Insider of all promotions. It does list a great deal of them on its Beauty Offers page, but I list some it does not on my Sephora Deals Page. Between the ones it lists and the ones I list, you can catch most of them. Subscribe to emails to get targeted offers. If you’re spending over $25 online, there is always a promo code that you can apply. Most major events run on a set schedule, which is why I track them. See all Sephora articles. Read Tips For Getting the Best Deal When Shopping Sephora. View my main page for the guide map to the site and deeper deal exploration.

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