This is an interesting subscription for me. I had Birch Box for a long time and became rather disenchanted with it. I received repeats of samples and after a time, the quality started to take a dip. When I heard they were raising the price from a $10 per month subscription to a $15 per month one, I cancelled. Then I talked to a friend of mine and was told they have gotten better so I decided to give them a try again. I know their system changed in June so I’ll give them a few months and then decide if I want to cancel again or if the changes make them worth keeping. Generally I re-evaluate things in January as part of my New year and cancel things then if I don’t like them. This will give me enough months, I think, to decide.
So the details. For $15 per month (less if you agree to a longer subscription term, $14. 6 month agreement, $13 of a year). Regardless of what option you take, the subscription is billed monthly, which I kind of like as an option. You are just committed for the time you agree to maintain your subscription. There are five sample sized or deluxe sized items with the occasional full size thrown in. This month there were four options to choose from. Because I tried so many of the samples in the other boxes, I chose the one that was haircare oriented this month since I was unfamiliar with them.
Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect was the first item in my box this month. This is a leave-in conditioner that is supposed to help detangle. I like the fine mist of the spray and the scent. It was lightweight on my hair and didn’t make it feel heavy. As my hair spends the bulk of the Summer tied up, I think I would see more use for this once the weather is cool enough to wear it down more often. It did make my hair feel soft and silky through which I liked. The full sized product is $32. While I will probably use up the sample I was sent, I probably wouldn’t buy this mostly because it doesn’t work better than other products I’ve tried and tangled hair isn’t one of my biggest concerns.
Bumble and bumble. Don’t Blow It (H)air Styler – Fine was the next item I pulled out. I was skeptical as my hair is anything but fine. I have thick hair that if I swing around too much could suck up small children and house pets. However, I really hate the hairdryer in the summer. By the time my hair is actually dry, I am a sweaty mess. So I crossed my fingers for this product. I have to say I was not disappointed. Fine hair oriented or not, this worked great for me. While I can’t speak for the UV protection (which if it is there is a good thing, I just have no way to test that), the product made my air dried hair look just as good as when I used the dryer. The full bottle is $31 and I can say this will be making its way to my dressing table once the sample is gone.
ARROW BOOST Color Enhancing Lip Balm – Blush Hour is the next item I pulled out of the box and truthfully it made me sigh and shake my head. The product included was a full sized version, which is nice. It has a $15 value which covers the cost of the box. It is also a BirchBox staple and one of the items I already tried. In fact I have several of these. The product description is this:
This hydrating lip balm reacts to your body’s chemistry to transform into a unique pink shade that enhances your natural lip color.
Yeah, it always comes out far too pink for me but it is very hydrating. The one I did test on my I keep for the winter when I need extra moisture on my lips but don’t plan to leave the house where other people can see me. It is VERY pink on me. I know others love it, but I kept this tube sealed and will pass it along to someone else who will like it. If Arrow ever comes out with one of these that doesn’t change color, I would be all over it because the formula is great. But that pink man, so pink.
Next we move on to the COOLA® Dawn Patrol™ Classic Primer SPF 30. While I like their sunscreen, this isn’t a terribly good primer. It does however mix well with my actual primer. It is light weight and not greasy so that is good. I just think the 2 in one (primer and sunscreen in this case) doesn’t always work out. This is one of those times. The full size is $42. Personally I would stick with their regular sunscreen rather than this one. It has a nice clean scent though.
Clarins Wonder Perfect Mascara 4D was included in this box. I have to say, during the time I maintained a description before I never had to buy mascara. I still have a boatload of samples. I know most subscription boxes put them in and truthfully even if I don’t do full eyeshadow and make up I tend to do a lip product and mascara before I leave the house. So I do use mascara, but this box is heavy on mascara samples. That said, this was a good mascara. It worked like mascara. It was black. While it claims that it promotes thicker longer lashes even after you remove the formula, the sample size isn’t going to be large enough to actually tell. It is a nice mascara. And should I ever manage to work my way to the bottom of my samples collection and actually buy a mascara for myself I would consider buying this one. The full size is $28.
The final item in my box was the invisibobble® POWER hair tie and I have to say I was very excited about this. In fact, it was one of the main reasons I chose this box. I know strange to be so excited about a hair tie, but like I said, I wear my hair up a lot in the summer time. I am always on the lookout for a better hair tie. These have gotten a lot of hype and somehow I just couldn’t bring myself to purchase them. The product retails for $9 for a pack of three. I expected to have only one in the box but got a pack of three so it was surprisingly full sized. I have to say they don’t snag and they hold my hair in place without slipping. So fat I am liking them. This is one of those products that I will continually use and form a full opinion about after a month or so of use. For now they work well and I’ll keep using them.
So far the new improved Birchbox is definitely improved so keeping them for the next few months won’t be a hardship. I tried a couples of new things I liked and got two full sized items. Their tracking system still drives me bonkers though. Because we have a metal mailbox and the sun is very warm I like to keep an eye out for tracking so that when I know a package is coming in I can get it out of the hot sun as fast as possible. This is not possible with their system. They send a shipping confirmation e-mail and after a time they will put a date range up, but it has very little to do with the actual date you receive the box. I know it isn’t accurate, yet I still feel the need to repeatedly check it so I’m actually driving myself crazy. This month the shipping notice claimed the box would arrive between the 6th and the 8th. It arrived on the 12th. Just something to be aware of if that is an issue for you. Otherwise, this was a fairly decent box this month.
Posted below is my referral code if you are interested in checking this subscription out. I get referral points if you use it. If that bothers you, just go to birchbox.com instead.
BB referral code: https://www.birchbox.com/invite/22q4s