Sunday, June 10, 2012

June 2012 Birchbox - A Review

I was so excited last night when Ron brought in the mail.  My June Birchbox arrived earlier than I expected!!  Score one for Birchbox.

It's a little like Christmas morning for me when I receive my Birchbox.  I always get the camera ready to take pictures as I peel back the layers to expose the contents of the box.

The card was laid atop the bright pink tissue paper, the words "Jet Set" catching my attention.  Curious as to what this could be, I dug further into the package.

The contents of the box were nestled together below the tissue paper, with one little mystery still awaiting discovery in the gray tissue.  The first thing I noticed was the item marked "For a Birchbox Man".  Now, Birchbox has recently begun monthly subscriptions for men, so I assume this is their attempt at gaining exposure for that line.

 I opened the contents of the little gray package and then took a picture to reveal the entire contents of my June Birchbox.

Sigh.  $10 spent, but I have to say that this ranks the lowest out of the three boxes I have received to date.  Seriously??  Band Aids??  Oh, and the "Apothederm" item...yeah, that's stretch mark cream.  And hand wipes??  Really, Birchbox??

The reverse side of that little post card gives a description of all of the items in the box.  For the first time, there was a familiar brand - Band Aid.  The rest was all new to me.  For the past two months, I've been doing one post a month to "introduce" my Birchbox and then will follow up with a second post as a review of the items.  Frankly, this box doesn't deserve two posts.  It barely deserves one.  So, here's ,my intro and review all rolled up into one post.

I actually did try the Apothederm Stretch Mark Cream this morning.  It says that it "fades stretch marks within weeks."  This sample obviously is not large enough to last "weeks", and I am totally unwilling to front the $89.95 cost of a full-size product in order to find out.  So, as to whether or not Apothoderm can make good on its lofty claim, I have no idea.  It shall remain a mystery to me.  As to how the lotion felt - it was nice as far as a lotion goes.

Rating: C {can't possibly determine effectiveness of product and definitely not buying}
Full Price: $89.95

The CleanWell Hand Sanitizing Wipes come in a 10 ct package or a 40 wipe canister.  They're hand wipes.  Enough said.

Rating: C+ {I'm sure the product is fine but definitely not buying}
Full Price: $3.98 (10 ct) or $5.98 (40 ct)

I did try the Scalisi Skincare Anti-Aging Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30.  The full price of this product falls into the "are you KIDDING ME???" category.  The moisturizer was nice - it was light and felt nice going on.  As the day wears on, my skin doesn't feel greasy or anything.  But that price tag....not sure if it has flecks of gold in it or what, but no way in this lifetime would I ever pay that amount for a moisturizer.  I don't care how good it is!

Rating: A {would buy it if it weren't so expensive}
Full Price: $110

Next up, I tried theBalm cosmetics Stainiac in Beauty Queen {theoretically a magenta-toned pink}.  I put this on this morning and looked in the mirror waiting for something magical to happen.  What's supposed to happen??  It's a lip and cheek stain.  I highly doubt I'd be putting this on my cheeks.  It did nothing.  I won't be bothering with a full-sized full-priced version.

Rating: C- {didn't like it and definitely not buying}
Full Price: $17

The last two items on the card are the "Extras".

I received a "Lifestyle Extra" in the form of Band Aid brand Cynthia Rowley Dress Up Band Aids.  This  was one of the "Seriously, Birchbox???" items in the box.  Band Aids.  Ok, so eventually I'm gonna need a Band Aid and there they will be - 20 "fashion" Band Aids to choose from.  I never knew there was a designer line of Band Aids.  Now that I know, I really don't care.  I'll take the good old fashioned adhesive strips I grew up with, thank you very much.  Is this the adult answer to Looney Toons or Sponge Bob Band Aids??  I really don't think I need to coordinate my first aid kit with my wardrobe.

Rating: C+ {I'm sure the product is fine but definitely not buying}
Full Price: $15 (20 ct)

I also received a "Birchbox Man Extra".  No, I didn't get an extra man in the box.  I received a John Varvatos Star USA cologne.  Obviously this is for Ron, not me.  I opened it up to give it a sniff.  I have to say I did like this.  That said, I think I could only handle it in small doses.  Scented things have a way of sending me to the bathroom.  That isn't real conducive to having a romantic moment, now is it??  It was nice though, so perhaps in low doses we'd be just fine.  We don't really have a line item for perfumes and colognes in the budget, so for now, it's out of our price range no matter what the cost.

Rating: A {would buy it if it weren't so expensive}
Full Price: $55-70

As I said already, of the three boxes I have received {April, May and June}, this ranks the lowest in my opinion.  I saw the Band Aids and stretch mark cream and that pretty much sealed my opinion on the box for this month.  That said, the Band Aids ARE usable {I just wouldn't spent money to buy them for real}.  So are the hand wipes {they'll be handy to throw in my purse, but I'm not going to buy them!}.  If there was a line item in my budget for colognes, I would consider buying the cologne for Ron - but, alas, there is not.

Ok, so this review is pretty negative, but as said, I'd still use the items.  It's $10 spent and that's ok.  We'll see what July brings.

If you are interested in Birchbox, it's $10 a month for the subscription.  You earn 10 points for every $10 spent.  When you've spent $100, you earn $10 to use in their shop!  You can earn points shopping in their shop as well.  Also, you can earn points by referring friends!  I had already accumulated 320 points in the three months I've been part of this program {without even having purchased a full-sized product!}, so that meant I had $30 waiting for me!  I decided to use my points towards a free product this month.  I decided to go with Ahava Mineral Body Lotion.  This item hasn't been in a Birchbox I've received yet.  Rather, it is an item I actually have a full-sized version of.  It's an amazing lotion using minerals from the Dead Sea.  My mom had received it from my aunt when she had traveled to Israel.  I wound up with it.  I love it and am running low.  I checked to see if this was something Birchbox carried, and it was.  It was $24 for the full-sized item, a price I'd be hesitant to pay without a store credit or gift card of some kind.  It was $5 for shipping.  I had a $30 credit in my account and it went towards the $29.  I did not get the $1 back - you use the $10 credits in your account in increments of $10.  I don't care about the $1.  What I love is that I have spent $30 on 3 months of the Birchbox subscription and have now ordered a full-sized product for $29 FREE.  Despite the fact that the June box is a bit of a dud, the whole program has been worth it to me!!  Dud or not, it's still new items to try this month, right??

If you are interested in subscribing for yourself, click HERE to receive more information!

If you already subscribe to Birchbox, what was in your box this month??

{note: the opinions in this post are strictly my own and i have in no way been compensated for this review}

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