Birchbox/Benefit Review November 2019

This month I traded in the box of samples for a full sized product.

Birchbox is a monthly beauty subscription with a base cost of $15 per box. With a subscription of six months or a year the cost goes down.  Regardless of what subscription you choose, you are billed monthly. I was on a six month subscription and November was the last month of this plan.  I haven’t decided whether or not to renew yet.  It is a subscription box that features samples with the occasional full sized item, like lip balm. Some of the samples are deluxe sized and some are ridiculously tiny. I’ve actually gotten a few things that looked as though they belonged in a doll house. While I understand that some of the smaller items were for really expensive products, the tiny size means that I am not able to accurately gauge my opinion on the product before it runs out. Since the point of the subscription is to more or less try before you invest in the purchase of a full sized product, I am not entirely convinced that those samples are worth it. 

I will of course decide for certain before December.

One thing I do like about the subscription is that they offer different boxes.  You can generally choose between three or four different options of boxes , or choose a full sized product offered in exchange for one of your boxes or (a new option) if nothing appeals to you, then you can change your box to points and use the points to purchase something on the site. I am a little on the fence about points actually.  While their on-line store does have a pretty good selection, unless it is a sale, there doesn’t seem to be much of a discount for members.  That makes the points for boxes seem more like a very limited savings plan. 

“Oh I like that $38 product, I’ll skip this month’s box, but give them fifteen dollars to keep and save it towards the full price purchase later.”

It’s not a bad thing and it may work for many people, but since there aren’t a lot of discounts or many exclusive products only for sale on Birchbox, I’d rather keep the fifteen dollars in my bank and then shop around when I am ready to buy.

The mirror and brush included with the product

In the past few months by the time I was able to pick my selection, many of the options were sold out.  This month when I checked in all of the options were still available to choose from. I don’t know if they increased the number of available boxes or if a lot of people opted out of the boxes and went for the credit option.  I do know that none of the boxes really appealed to me so I chose to swap my box with the one offered full sized item.

I was surprised to find that the item was not shipped in regular packaging but shipped in a regular box. I’m guessing because it fit in the regular box. Some of the products that were offered in previous months (and sold out) were hair care items and the full size looked bigger than the box. I don’t know if that means they skipped the box with those or if the product was actually scaled down to fit the box instead of being regular full sized (or my estimation of the size could be off, I am not trying to cast aspersions, I just really don’t know.) No one I’ve talked to picked up the full sized items, so if anyone knows, please add a comment below, because I really am curious.

The blush itself. The texture makes it look creepily like wrinkled skin but I’m hoping it wears away quickly.

So my full sized item this month was the Benefit Gold Rush Warm Golden-Nectar Blush.  It was full sized and the full size normally retails for $30 so I feel better about my $15 box than I have in a while. The product description for this blush is:

A rush of this golden blush will instantly awaken the look of your complexion with its versatile peachy shade featuring gold flecks. Not just pretty on your cheekbones but also in its compact—which includes a brush and handy mirror—it has a pretty overspray design that gradually lifts away to reveal the golden nectar color underneath. It’s even infused with a lovely scent containing notes of citrus, vanilla, and sandalwood, so every time you dust it on, it livens up more than just your makeup. Besides imparting color, it also leaves a subtle sheen for a multidimensional look.

I have to say, I like the blush.  It is light and buildable, so you don’t start off looking like you applied clown make-up. Sometimes I go a little crazy with the blush and have to try and back track. Its only blush I do this with actually.  Maybe because of the darker tones of the bronzers I am more wary, but me and blush have a history of abuse that stretches back to middle school. I am trying to break the cycle, but light and buildable is my friend.  It is a nice peachy shade that blends well into the skin.

unblended blush swatch on the skin. You can see some of the gold flakes but it isn’t overkill. It blends into the skin giving you a light peachy glow

I was a little worried about the gold flecks, but they are not as glitterific as I feared.  It is a blush that can be worn to work without looking like you are planning a lunch time dance party. It is pretty and it does smell nice.  I have to admit I can’t pick out the individual tones they name but it smells generically nice.

The brush is cute and I was excited to have an included brush.  And it is a nice brush, but because of the packaging, it is easier to use a brush with a longer handle.  The box is nice and pretty but the sides are high and with the small brush the box is a bit annoying. The mirror is small and relatively pointless.  It is good for checking your lipstick, but not much else. I know it’s supposed to be good for on the go applications, but the package is kind of bulky and not really something I’d drop in my purse to use when out and I’m not really sure I’d travel with it to be honest. The square box just takes up too much space.

I will use the product though because I like it, but I will be using it at home, where there is a large mirror. So product gets a nine out of ten, while the packaging gets a five out of ten and let’s face it most of those five points are for looks. Because it is pretty, it just has some flaws in the design. The big question is though, would I buy this product again?

At the moment I would have to say yes.  The Benefit Gold Rush Warm Golden-Nectar Blush is a good blush and I would consider purchasing it again.  I will just be using it at home.

Over all I am really pleased with my product this month.  Which sort of puts me in a quandary.  I was pretty sure I would automatically cancel when my subscription was up. One of my biggest issues was that things were sold out before I went to make my selection, often leaving me with only one available option. This month that was corrected and I managed to get a good product for a great value.  I was hoping writing this review would help me decide and I find I am still on the fence.  Luckily it is only mid-month so I still have time to decide. It was my first beauty subscription box so thee is some sentimentality to it, however at the moment, I feel I may have outgrown it. Does anyone else out there have any thoughts on Birchbox they’d like to share? I’d love to hear them.

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