Since a year has gone by since I started receiving Birchboxes, I thought I'd compile a list of mentionable products and a few duds, like this Nail Rock (below) in "Velvet Navy" that I recieved in my last box. For those of you not familiar with Birchbox, it's like a beauty product enthusiast's dream. For $10 each month you get a handcrafted box of beauty supplies sent to your door and wrapped up in a pretty package. Most items are high-end and the trendiest supplies on the market, albeit only sample sizes for the most part.
I've gotten a few hits and misses with my boxes, and my last one was no exception. Nail Rock is a neat and unique product where you apply a coat of the included polish and quickly dip your nail in a little glass jar of velvet. You brush away the excess and voila - you've got an eye-catching but also very flimsy nail design! Unfortunately, this may have been the NAIL in the coffin (har, har) for my membership, as I plan on signing up for a year of Ipsy's Glam Bag instead. What really draws me to Ipsy is their drive to find products tailored to your skin/hair/eye color. There are so many companies to choose from that feature this concept, so if you're interested in being on the cutting edge of cosmetology, check 'em out. Everyone has their favorite, so just pick one and have fun!
Birchbox: Year in Review
1. Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser: Whoa! This product, which arrived with a handy little reusable muslin cloth, has a way of getting into the nooks and crannies of your pores without being too harsh. I felt like I was at a spa! Once I run out of my sample, I'm buying more with my handy review points.
2. Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk: I had always heard, generally, about the mysterious substance that buys your hair some time until your next shower. This product changed my life! Not only does it freshen hair and leave a great scent, it also conditions! Since the wool was pulled from my eyes, I've since found a budget-friendly and insanely comparable version of this product: Suave Dry Shampoo, and have since recommended it to every. single. friend. I have.
3. theBalm® cosmetics InStain® Long-Wearing Powder Staining Blush: I always found that blushes were too severe and never seemed to stay on all day anyway. This blush changed the game for me. Be weary though, as it really does stain your cheeks like it says! To make things easier on yourself, apply it gradually until you've achieved the desired rosy-cheeked look.
4. Sumita Color Contrast Eyeliner: Is this some weird concoction of butter and ink? No, it's just an amazing eyeliner that seems to melt right onto your skin and stay on like a tattoo. I shy away from pencil liners and go for the new marker-style variety, but this is a sheer win for lash lines everywhere. The creamy texture means easier application. Down with eyeball poking and scraping your delicate lashes! Tip: the dark blue looks great with brown eyes!
5. Lancôme LA BASE PRO: This is a clear primer that turns your face into a canvas. It quickly fills in pores and seems to vanish, leaving you with lightweight velvety skin and no residue. It's magical!
6. amika Obliphica Nourishing Mask: I'm in love with all masks; hair, skin, even the Mardi Gras variety! This amika mask hydrated my hair and made my split ends less noticeable. A++
7. Folle de Joie eau de parfum: After a quick look of the full-size price tag, included in each box, I thought they were out of their minds to assume I would like any perfume stuck-up enough to cost nearly $100. I was wrong. This perfume came down from heaven, riding on the wings of angel! I'm hoping to either get it as a birthday present or perhaps pool my money with 15 other friends to afford it.
8. Benefit Benetint: I saw this in Sephora but wasn't gutsy enough to splurge on a liquid blush. It seems like a really strange way to apply blush, but it looks just as natural as if you spent the day at the beach. Paint it on like nail polish and prepare for a day of natural-looking beauty.
9. Mighty Leaf Tea - Tea Pouches: What?! Birchbox also includes snacks and other yummy stuff? Yes, it's true. I've gotten chocolates, gourmet fortune cookies and the list goes on. This one gets an honorable mention because Mighty Leaf has really got it together! If you're trying to kick coffee, I recommend their delicious Vanilla Bean Black Tea that tastes like dessert. I also got a kick out of their teabag, which seems like mesh stitched together by hand into a pyramid of luscious leaves.
10. Vasanti BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator: My face has never felt cleaner and more luminous thanks to this product. I will definitely be purchasing this with my points!
It's been real, Birchbox! It's a great company if you're looking for make-up application tips, reviews from millions of fans, and a fantastic ten-point-per-review system that has left me with $50 to spend on anything I so choose. After a year and over sixty product samples, these are the ten that blew me away. Onward, to the next beauty adventure!
If you've got a favorite product that made your year-end list or is an all-time fave, let me know in the comments below. I'm always interested in trying new things. Thanks for reading! :)