Birchbox is still one the most straightforward of the beauty subscription boxes around; it’s simple in that you can cancel by the last day of the preceding month, and it’s £10 a month plus £2.95 shipping. There are options to pay for longer subscriptions (3, 6 or 12 months) and save money, but ever since the points system ended, it’s never been quite the same.
Last month’s box sold out due to Black Friday, and since then Birchbox have had a backlog of customer queries, and I’m still waiting to hear back on a missing item from a set I ordered and duplicated items from over two weeks ago. Both the boxes and customer services can be hit or miss, and I have to admit my December box is very pretty, but the contents didn’t make me jump for joy even though there are seven items in the box this month.
Rating and verdict
The December box is rather festive with a glittery blue top and rose gold stars, and inside are seven items. Now, the boxes do vary according to your profile and also wheat boxes are in stock at the time. Everyone got the comb, chocolates, and a full sized Laritzy Liquid Lipstick this month, and here is what I got in my box:
- Birchbox Hair Comb ~ Full size @£5
- Hotel Chocolat duo ~ Two chocolates
- Oh K! Bubble Sheet Mask ~ Full size @£7.50
- Spacemask ~ Full size @£3.50
- Laritzy Cosmetics Liquid Lipstick in Tidal or Power ( I got Tidal)~ Full size @£20
- Balance Me Micellar Water ~ Travel size 30ml @£6
- Percy and Reed Totally Hydrating Mask ~ Sachet 25 ml @£3.25
Total retail value about £45
On paper the box looks excellent value, but the products just aren’t that useful to me, but are handy as gifts. I rarely use a comb, so although pretty the chances of using it are remote, I’m not a fan of sheet masks because I don’t sit still and find they get in the way of me doing other things, the Spacemask is an item I have had in several boxes and I now have a stash, I don’t use micellar water as I don’t find it that effective and when I travel I take wipes which won’t leak and are much lighter to carry, and I don’t use conditioning masks on my hair except when my hair feels damaged, and as for liquid lipsticks, I like them but the shade isn’t one for me.
The idea of subscription boxes is to try new items, but several have been in previous boxes already on more than one occasion. Sadly, there are no new finds, and there is nothing I would buy from the box (except the chocolates), and so for the final box of the year, it’s a bit underwhelming. I think Birchbox need a revamp and while I love the drawer boxes, the contents have become too repetitive. This month there were too many items that had a single use, and I usually need to try things a few times before I am convinced of how good they are. The box as I said is however beautiful, and for some this collection would be well received (someone new to beauty boxes and products) but not for someone looking for something new.