Saturday, October 12, 2013

Birchbox October 2013 Review

If Birchbox didn't have such a great point system, I'd have dropped it a long time ago.  However, there is something to be said for $10 per month for samples and getting back about $5 per month in store credit for reviewing the products.

October 2013

I peeked at my box when they were posted yesterday, and I was even more underwhelmed when it finally showed up.

Birchbox October 2013: Beauty Buzz

First up, this box's only really excellent item: Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant.

Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfolient

This is supposed to be gentle enough for even sensitive skin, and it smells like lemonade.  Winning! I have no complaints about this, I use a facial exfoliator once or twice per week and am glad to have a new one to try.  I just hope I don't fall in love with this, the price is pretty steep!

Full size is $78 for 2 oz of product, making the 0.25 oz sample worth $9.75.

Next is yet ANOTHER giant foil packet from Miss Jessie's.  This time they sent me Pillow Soft Curls, which is described as a lotion, not a gel or creme.  Previously, I have tried Jelly Soft Curls (gel: NASTY) and the Stretch Curl Creme (creme: INEFFECTIVE), and I am hopefully through most of this product line.  I don't want any more samples from them.  (Hint, hint, Birchbox.)

Miss Jessie's Pillow Soft Curls

The reviews say this smells like fabric softener, and based upon the other MJ products I've tried, I assume it will be absolutely overpowering and will not fade all day.

Full size is $22 for 8.5 fl.oz.  This 1 oz sample is worth $2.59.

The "Birchbox Find" this month is a ChapStick Hydration Lock in Vanilla Creme.  Birchbox Finds are items that you can pick up for cheap somewhere like CVS or Target.  I don't really have a problem getting them in BB, especially since they are things I'd normally drop a couple bucks on.  This just saves me a trip!

ChapStick Hydration Lock

I'm not going to open this right away, since I have 4 kajillion open lip balms, but I'll use it when I run out of my Noya balm from my August Ipsy bag.  That one really ended up growing on me and I keep it next to my bed for night-time and first-thing-in-the-morning.  Hopefully I like this Chapstick just as much, because they don't have to be ordered online.

This is full-sized and sells for about $2.99 at drugstores.  I'm sure you can find sales or coupons, though.

I then went to open the little cardboard package that contained the rest of my items, and pulled out my lip gloss... and a hand full of eyeshadow.

Oh look, my lip gloss has a brown shimmery disease

Yeah.  I wiped off the outside of the gloss and soldiered on, all in the name of blog reviews.  You're welcome!

Pop Beauty Aqua Lacquer in Flowering Fuchsia. 

Pop Beauty Aqua Lacquer in Flowering Fuchsia

This gloss looks brighter in the tube than it does on my lips, but it is decent.  

Me wearing Flowering Fuchsia Aqua Lacquer
It's not really this bright, that's the lighting

It's not sticky at all, and the mint gives a little bit of tingle.  The applicator, though, is weird.  The company describes it as "spatuala-like" and I think that is appropriate.  It is like the doe-foot applicator, just without the fuzzy part, just the plastic underneath.  It makes for a strange application of the gloss.  Also, the flowers on the tube and the packaging in general make it seem like it's mostly marketed towards 15 year old girls.  It seems a little young, is all.

Weird Applicator
This is full-sized, 10 mL, and sells for $14 on Birchbox.

Last, but not least, is the offending eyeshadow quad from Coastal Scents.  

Coastal Scents Eyeshadow Sample Quad in set #34
Clockwise, from top left: Boca Mocha, Golden Sienna, Pinehurst, Burnished Brunette.

Upon extracting it from the powder in the bottom of the cardboard package, I found that two out of the four colors were smashed into powder.  Of course, they were the two colors I'd actually use in this sample, that's just my luck.  I emailed BB about this, asking them if they could at least send me a new one, but I don't expect to hear back until after the holiday weekend. 

:( Poor eyeshadow!

Left to right: Golden Sienna, Pinehurst, Burnished Brunette, Boca Mocha
One swipe with my finger, no primer
There is 2g worth of eyeshadow in here, and on the Coastal Scents site they sell 1.5g individual shadows for $1.95, giving this quad a value of $2.60.

Total Value: $31.93

All together, I'm not very excited about this box.  The microdermabrasion scrub will definitely get used after I run out of my Michael Todd Jojoba and Charcoal scrub (again, from the August Ipsy!), and I'll get around to using the chapstick at some point.  I am not sure if I am willing to try out the curl lotion- I've hated every Miss Jessie's product I've tried and I don't want to inflict another bad hair day upon myself.  The smashed eyeshadows and teenage girl lip gloss didn't help matters.  At least I got 50 points ($5) for reviews!

Birchbox costs $10 per month and they send you between 4 and 6 sample (and rarely, full-sized) items.  You can review each item for 10 points, and every 100 points gives you $10 credit to use in their online store.  If you want to sign up, you can use my link here.  This will give me 50 points and endless joy.

No special consideration or compensation was received for this post and all thoughts and opinions are my own. All items mentioned within were paid for by me.


  1. I think if I had to sum this month's box up, I'd choose: juvenile. As soon as I saw that chapstick, hair gunk, and hot pink flowered lip gloss (along with the cheapy broken GLITTER packed shadow quad) I couldn't stop thinking "that looks like something I would have loved in 9th grade!"
    Says the girl who just bought a wet 'n' wild lipstick yesterday. haha. They have some nice matte colors - I swear!

    1. Hahaha I totally agree! I ended up trying the scrub and Chapstick, and I like them both enough to not really care about the other duds.

      No shame... Wet n wild makes some great things! Their eyeshadow trios are actually very nice, especially for the price! :) I have one that I've almost used up, while my expensive shadows gather dust.

  2. I got the POP lip gloss too. I'm not a fan; it felt sticky to me, but the applicator is really cool. Actually, I was kinda disappointed in my box this month too. :( I hope they'll fix your eyeshadow problem!

    1. Either way, $14 for that lip gloss is NOT worth it!
      :( sorry your box was also underwhelming!