Monday, October 17, 2011

October Birchbox

Birchbox, in case you aren't familiar with it, is a subscription cosmetics service that sends you a box of samples for $10/month.  The samples are chosen by Birchbox, and every month has some hits and misses, but overall I've been fairly pleased with my subscription.  At the very least, it's introduced me to brands and products I'd never heard of before (for better or for worse).  I've read reviews of October's box on a few other sites already, but none have included all of the products I received, and I'd like to give a few of them a shoutout since so far I've been more pleased than disappointed with them.

Laura Geller Spackle Tinted Primer in Bronze:  This received a WTF face from me right out of the box because anything labeled "bronze" probably isn't right for my face.  I am white, white, white.  Pasty white.  Never-go-tanning white.  I don't even wear bronzer because it looks really unnatural on my face.  Still, I'd read a few reviews that suggested this primer went on very sheer, so I gave it a try today.

Verdict: Eh.  It's okay.  I do like that it isn't silicon-based since I'm becoming less and less enamored of my Smashbox primer (which is mostly silicon) as time goes by.  As a primer it's solid--my makeup still looks just as fresh 8 hours after application as it would if I'd used Smashbox.  The "bronze" part is throwing me, though.  More than anything else it reminds me of NARS illuminator (see earlier entry on products I regret purchasing), which is to say that while the color is lovely in its bottle, it's all but colorless on your skin.  I'll definitely keep using the sample, but probably won't buy more when it runs out.

Juno Sunday Riley Enhancing Oil: OMG, I just noticed the pricetag for this on Birchbox's website--$125!  To say I wouldn't pay even 1/10th of that would be an understatement.  I was of Juno's Sunday Riley, and actually threw the bottle away after one use because I disliked it so much.  Imagine how you'd smell after rolling around in a pile of wood chips and mulch--that's how Sunday Riley smells.  It's a nice oil, but the smell is so unpleasant that when I walked out of the bathroom my husband did a double take from 10 feet away and asked me what I'd put on myself.  So no, not on my "to buy" list.

Ahava Mineral Hand Cream:  LOVE.  Love, love, love.  This is a thick, moisture-rich lotion that doesn't leave sticky or greasy residue behind.  The fact that it only has a very light, fresh scent is a real selling point for me too.  I'll definitely be purchasing this the next time I'm in need of moisturizer.

Ouidad Moisture Lock Leave-In Conditioner:  LOVE.  The only leave-in conditioner I'd used until now was Bumble & Bumble's (not to be confused with their Shine On conditioner, which I didn't like and reviewed last week), which works great but is also $25 per bottle.  Ouidad is $16 for 6 oz, and works at least as well as B&B.  Just a small dollop worked through my hair (which is short, thick, and color treated) after my shower resulted in noticeable softness and gave me less frizz than I'm used to with the wash-out Aveda conditioner I've used for the last few months.  I used it yesterday morning, and even after not washing my hair this morning I'm not noticing any heaviness or residue from the conditioner.  My hair was also much easier to style both yesterday and today than usual, and I doubt it's a fluke.  This is another must-buy for me.

Ahava Dermud Enriched Foot Cream: The foot and hand cream are both fabulous products.  Ahava is the only brand from this box I'd heard of before receiving it, and its reputation for quality isn't at all undeserved. 

Verdict:  3.5 stars out of 5.  I'm still unsure about the primer--a few more days of wear may change my mind, but I doubt it'll ever wind up on my must-purchase list.  The Ahava products alone made this a good box for me, and the conditioner just sealed the deal.

So what did you get in your Birchbox?

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