Summer beauty boxes can be a little hit or miss, usually because they contain seasonal items such as self-tan, which can be useful if you use it but not so much for those who don’t. I decided to take a chance and see what curation I would get as there were some interesting items such as the new Nuxe masks, Polaar cream and a couple of brushes that were amongst the offerings.
Birchbox is a monthly beauty subscription box that costs £10 per month plus £2.95 shipping. There are pre-paid options available, or you can have the rolling monthly subscription where you can cancel by the last day of the month. You get at least 5 sample/travel or full sized items and each month there are several curations available, but you don’t get to pick! My friend had already received hers and she was disappointed, however, mine was only marginally better with items that I could use or could regift easily.
I have to say Birchbox have been struggling with their customer service and also their website control panels recently. There was no option to remove click and collect unless it is at the payment stage, and as my location had recently closed I couldn’t alter the option afterwards so my parcel was returned before it was sent! I had to pretend to make an order to create the option to remove click and collect. Last month, my July box still hadn’t arrived by the last week of July, so they cancelled it for me despite having paid on the first of the month, yet many others had received their boxes already.
Rating and verdict
The design of the drawer box this month is beautiful, and I thought even if the contents aren’t great, then the box is useful and pretty. It was hard to rate the box because even though the box claimed to have three full sized items, two were full sized travel items valued at £4 in total. Here are the content of my box:
- Love Beauty and Planet Coconut Shower Gel ~ 100ml full sized (travel size) @ £2.50
- Anatomicals Strawberry Scrub ~ 50ml full sized (travel size) @ £1.50
- Sand & Sky Pink Clay Mask ~ 13g tube/sample size @£8 approximately
- Balance Me Hyaluronic Pumping Mist ~ 5 ml sample size @ £3
- LOC Liquid Shimmer Eyeshadow in Moonlight ~ Full sized @£8
Perceived retail value £23
I can’t say I was jumping with joy when I opened the box, but I have had worse. The value of the box seems quite poor, and having seen other curations this month, there are much better value ones than the one I received. As usual, a box is only good value if you will use the items and I will use the scrub and I already use a similar pink clay mask. The shower gel will be useful for a stocking filler, however I don’t use shimmery eyeshadow so that isn’t useful, and the pumping mist to be honest hardly seems worth it for a 5 ml spray.
The problem is that not all Birchbox curations are of equal value or have the same variation either, and the sizes of the samples seem to be getting smaller. Being frank, the scrub will last about 2-3 uses, as will the clay mask (and that’s if you skimp), and the facial spray, and so for half the products that will last you a few days doesn’t seem great value at all.
I think Birchbox will need to up their game to remain competitive and to retain loyalty. That said, some of their limited edition sets can be better value, and I bought a couple of those which I am much happier with than the monthly subscription box.