Birchbox, $10 per month (US only)
Little Miss Apple isn't so sure about modeling. She doesn't really like to hold still. Fortunately, she was nice enough to hold still for half a second so I could get this picture of her in this month's Birchbox! Check out last month's Birchbox review to see how much this little girl has grown!
Birchbox is one of the most popular beauty boxes. At $10 per month, it's also one of the most affordable. Subscribers receive five to six products each month. Birchbox has you fill out a profile when you subscribe, which they supposedly use to choose the products for your box. You usually get more skincare than makeup samples and the sample sizes tend to be on the small side. Each month, Birchbox gives subscribers the option of choosing a product for the following month's box, choosing the curated box, or leaving everything to surprise. They offer three to five different samples to choose from and sometimes the samples are the same type of product (e.g., different types of mascara or moisturizer), sometimes they are the same product in different colors, and sometimes the products are completely unrelated. If you choose the curated box, you know exactly what you'll be getting, so there are no surprises with that one, but, if you like everything in that box, it's worth it. I find that the curated boxes usually ship earlier in the month and often have high values.
Here's what I got this month:
- Beauty Protector Protect and Volume (small sample, worth ~$2.94; full size costs $23.50)
- ARROW ENHANCE Waterproof Eyeliner and Brightener (full size(?), worth $16)
- Bioderma Hydrabio H2O (teeny sample, worth $0.68; full size costs $16.90)
- Obliphica Professional Seaberry Serum -- Medium to Coarse (deluxe sample, worth $8.78; full size costs $38)
- Cargo Cosmetics Swimmables Resistant Bronzer in Medium (deluxe sample, worth $6.44; full size costs $29)
My March Birchbox was worth about $34.84. The size of the Beauty Protector product wasn't listed on the bottle, so I had to guess on the value of that. Also, the ARROW brightener normally comes as a pencil that has a brightener on one end and black eyeliner on the other end. The sample I received had only the eye brightener, but the size listed for my sample, 0.28 oz, is bigger than the total size listed for the eyeliner/brightener, 0.2 oz., so I wasn't really sure if the listing was incorrect for the full size product. I had no interest in the curated box this month, so I chose the ARROW ENHANCE Waterproof Eyeliner and Brightener as my sample. I got two hair products, two makeup products, and one skincare product this month, so the mix was a little unusual for Birchbox as they tend to be heavier on skincare and I don't often see more than one hair product in a box.
Volumizer, as you know if you've read my past reviews, is the last thing my hair needs. Getting products like this is what makes me think that Birchbox pays no attention whatsoever to profiles. Like all Beauty Protector products, this smells really good, so it has that going for it. I tried this out just to review it and I saw some added volume, but not tons, so I didn't mind it. Besides volume, this also provides your hair with protection from heat styling. If you want a little extra volume and some great smelling hair, I recommend giving this a try.
The ARROW ENHANCE Waterproof Eyeliner and Brightener was my product choice for March. ARROW is Birchbox's new house brand and I like their mascara a lot, so I was excited to try another product from them. The full size version of this is double ended and has a black liner on one end and the brightener on the other, but the sample included only the brightener. This is very pink and I wish it was slightly more neutral. I liked how this looked when I applied it to the inner corners of my eyes. I used this on my waterline and found it didn't go on quite as smoothly there. You could see teeny "crumbs" that it left behind. Also, it was difficult to get it just right -- it was easy to go too light and not see any difference or go too hard and have it look very weird and fake. After a little practice, I was able to get it down and have it look natural. This is a good product, but not amazing.
I love micellar water, so I was happy to see Bioderma's Hydrabio H2O in my box. This is a moisturizing no-rinse makeup remover that you apply to your face with a cotton pad. This might get light makeup off, but, if you have a full face on, I'd recommend using something a little stronger first, then using this as backup. I also recommend washing your face after removing your makeup. If you are tired and don't have the energy to wash your face, this is better than nothing. It was quite moisturizing and had that nice, soft feel micellar water has. Given that I use a stronger makeup remover before this and wash my face after using this, I don't think I'll be using this regularly. It just adds an unnecessary step to my already long skincare routine.
I love the Obliphica Professional Seaberry Hair Serum in Fine to Medium, so I was excited to try the serum in Medium to Coarse. My hair is neither fine nor coarse, so I figured they would work equally well for me. The two products contain the exact same ingredients. The only difference is that the Medium to Coarse contains a colorant. Both formulas gave me softer and smoother hair, so I was happy with the results. These are definitely some of my favorite hair products ever. Has anyone noticed a difference between the two formulas? The worked exactly the same for me, but that might be because my hair is medium.
Finally, we have the Cargo Cosmetics Swimmables Resistant Bronzer in Medium. Cargo doesn't seem to make any other colors of the bronzer, so I'm not sure why it is called Medium. This is quite buildable, so you can use a light touch for a subtle look or put more on to get something a little more dramatic. This lasted all day and will even hold up in water. Bronzer isn't my favorite product in the world -- it's more of a special occasion thing that an everyday product for me -- but I liked how this worked and will use it in the future.
March was a pretty good month for Birchbox. The only miss for me was the Beauty Protector Protect and Volume. The Bioderma Hyrabio H2O was okay, but it is not something I will use often. I liked the ARROW brightener, the Cargo bronzer, and the Obliphica serum. The Obliphica serum is probably my favorite product of the month, but the ARROW brightener came in a close second.
What did you think of the March Birchbox? Did you have any favorite products?