Tuesday, September 20, 2011

September Birchbox

September's Birchbox came last week so I thought I'd go over its contents with you and do a little quick first-impressions review. For those who aren’t familiar with Birchbox, here is a little explanation: It’s essentially a “makeup of the month” club where for $10 a month, you become a member and they ship you a few sample sizes (or sometimes full sizes if you’re lucky) of high-end skincare products and cosmetics. If you like them enough to re-purchase, you can buy that item on the Birchbox website and earn points which you may later use as discounts on future purchases. You also fill out a short questionnaire about what your skin and makeup concerns are so that they can tailor your box based on your needs and likes. If you are interested, I recommend visiting the website for more information, as I’m sure I’m not covering everything there is to know about being a Birchbox-er. In short: if you like samples, you’re going to enjoy this club. Keep reading for more info and photos.

The card that comes with the box explains that this month is the one year anniversary of Birchbox starting up. So they put together a special little box that is supposed to represent them: "open-minded and multi-faceted, girly one day and minimalist the next." I must admit, this also represents me. So I was excited...

Inside the box was: 

A nice sized pot of Colorescience pro SPF mineral powder. I've actually been using this brand for years after reading a random article where Cameron Diaz recommended it as a dry SPF for your face. I hate putting SPF cream on my face. It makes me itchy and I just don't like the feeling of it for some reason. I've actually worn this powder out and had my body burn and my face be completely protected, so it really does work. And this version provides some coverage like a normal mineral foundation would.

They also sent a pretty cool set of nail polish strips from a brand I haven't heard of before called Incoco. I'm a HUGE fan of the Sally Hansen Salon Effects nail polish strips and I've had great long-wearing results from those. I hope this brand works as well because the pattern they sent me is fabulous. Animal print with glitter called "All That Glitters"! Look at all the different designs they have on their website! They also have solid shades available. I'll try and do a review on these strips soon.

Next up is a teeny Jouer lip balm. Awwww, how cute. They tend to give away Jouer brand lip products pretty often. They are nice, but nothing to really write home about. I tested the lip balm on my recently chapped lips (does anybody else get chapped lips from talking too much?...no?...) and it really did do a nice job of softening them back up quickly. But at the price of $14 for a full size, I think I'll stick with my trusty drugstore Carmex lip balm which also doubles as a cure-all for pretty much any dry skin issue you might have. The Jouer had a nice, light, perfume-y smell to it, and no flavor, but a hint of color on the product itself that doesn't translate to the lips.

I also got a tube of Jurlique age-defying cream (uh...is this b/c I turned 31 this month, Birchbox?!) which I have no intention of using. I'll probably give it to my mom for her to test out. I did put a small dab on my face to see if it did any immediate "firming" which it didn't, but it did leave the area feeling highly moisturized.

There was also a sample spray of Ferragamo's perfume Attimo L'Eau Florale. They're not kidding about the Florale. At first spray, it's crazy-strong floral which I'm not usually a fan of. It's strong and very mature. But it keeps changing on the skin over the course of an hour or so and does fade to a less intense floral scent, but it's still too "sharp" for my taste. 

Lastly, they included a "treat" which is sometimes a food item and sometimes a random beauty item. I like the food ones best. ;-) This time it's a little friendship bracelet with the Birchbox signature square on it. I probably am not going to be wearing this glorified piece of string. But I might be able to use the charm for something else...maybe...

I am really excited about the nail strips and the mineral powder, but all in all this month's box was kind of "meh". But that's actually part of the excitement of getting a Birchbox every month. It's a gamble! Maybe next month there will be a full-sized Laura Geller product or a Zoya polish like in past months. :-)