first thoughts & impressions: birchbox september 2017

september 2017 birchbox review

Birchbox is one of the OG subscription boxes available to the beauty community. I was a subscriber back in the day, but I wound up not using a lot of the products so I canceled after a few months. Of course, the thing that entices me back years later is an offer for half off the first box in a 3-month subscription. Why not try it briefly and see how I like it this time around?

Birchbox offers a couple of options for subscribers. The curated box is a “what you see is what you get” type deal based off your personal beauty profile. You’re able to see what’s inside your box – great if you’re interested in most or all of the products chosen for you. There’s also Sample Choice, where you pick one product out of a small selection, and the rest are a surprise depending on your profile. Or, you can do nothing and have it be a total surprise.

If you place your subscription order on the 25th or before of each month, you’ll receive that month’s box based on your profile. If you order the subscription after, you’ll receive next month’s box and be able to participate in sample choice. I didn’t know about this when I subscribed, and I would’ve waited until the 25th if I did.

I’m not really sure how I want to structure this. I was thinking of doing a first thoughts/impressions, and then seeing how I like it a few weeks later. We’ll see how this plays out! So, here’s what I got in my box this month…

Marcelle BB Cream Golden Glow | Here’s where I wish that Birchbox was a little more accommodating: I don’t use foundations or BB creams at all! It’d be nice to opt out of products we know for sure we don’t use, though it’s not an option because “we’re a full discovery service, and experimentation is part of the fun“. This is already a hard pass without trying it on.

amika Un.Done Texture Spray | I’m actually excited to use this! I already have pretty voluminous hair to begin with, but I want even more! ALL OF IT! It’s an aerosol spray product which I’m not too keen on, but I’m interested nonetheless.

Vasanti Eye Wonder 2.0 Super Powered Eye Cream with Ceramic Tip | I don’t use eye cream, like, at all. I’ve used Kiehl’s Creamy Avocado eye cream in the past, but it ended up going bad since I’m just so bad with using it! I’ve heard that eye cream is really just an overpriced moisturizer anyway, though I know some people swear by it. I’m giving this a chance, but I’m not expecting anything life-changing.

Daily Concepts Your Facial Micro Scrubber | I guess this is perfect, since I’m about to run out of my physical exfoliant! I’m pretty sure a washcloth does the same thing, but perhaps a little scrubber like this is easier to use?

Lord & Berry Glow Strobing Pencil | Something else that interests me! Cream highlighters are nowhere near as blinding as a powder highlight, but I love how easy they are to use. Just apply and tap away with your finger to blend – no brushes needed!

Do you subscribe to Birchbox, or any other subscription services?

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  • Hmm, looks like a decent box but I probably won’t get much use out of these. I used to subscribed to ipsy but this month will be my last and now I have moved on to BoxyCharm and LookFantastic. I got tired of receiving tiny weeny sample sizes which is why ipsy got the boot.

    Shireen⎜Reflection of SanityBurberry Beauty Giveaway

    • haha, I actually like the tiny sample sizes; it’s not often that I’ll finish a product anyway, especially when it comes to makeup. It’s why I like those little sephora sampler sets so much sometimes LOL although I don’t end up buying most of them because there’s just a handful of things I’m interested in using. I might hop around subscription boxes for a bit and see which one’s worth it for me!

  • I still have yet to get on the box train yet. I haven’t seen any that I’m crazy about. This one sounds like you got some decent things, but there are a lot I wouldn’t use. That’s one thing I hate about boxes! They never quite get it right. 😉


    • haha, to be honest I’m not crazy about birchbox either! It was mostly out of curiosity to see how things have changed. hoping that the next box will be catered more to my taste!

  • This does look like a decent box! That’s too bad there’s a bb and eye cream in there though since you don’t use those. I have yet to find an eye cream that does something other than Moisturizer, so yes I can agree that they are probably just an over size Moisturizer. I hope the highlight, face exfoliant and texture spray are good though!

    • I might pass it off to my mom or sister, so it’s not completely gone to waste! I’ve heard some people swearing by eye creams, though I haven’t found one that wows me yet. but since it’s skincare, maybe it’s used as a preventative method of wrinkles?

  • Sam

    although subscription boxes are intriguing and I like seeing what other people receive, it’s definitely not for me. I’m usually not interested in most of the products for myself, and I’d rather save for money for a full sized product of something I will use. that being said, there’s always the golden items – like you, the amika texture spray would be super exciting to try! I’m finally (slowly) getting on the bandwagon for hair products, since mine is so flat!

    • I used to be the same way, but I think Birchbox changed a bit! Back in their early stages, they just had a tiny selection of products that were kinda meh to me. I got my October box and I’m liking most of the things in there, though I don’t think I’ll be renewing after the next month. Birchbox is fun for just a while I think, and like you, I’d rather save the money for something else!

  • Yeah it sucks you can’t opt out of things you know you wouldn’t use! I find that with a lot of subscription boxes!

    xx Sofia | SOFIAADOT

    • Yeah, same with glossybox when I subscribed a few years ago! I’ve seen a few subscription services that let you choose your samples, but the ones I remember either had those puny packet samples or ones I’m not interested in.

  • Birchbox was the first subscription box I tried as well but like you I quit after a few months because I just wasn’t loving any of the samples, and that’s really how I feel about these beauty subscriptions in general. I think it’s because I’m super picky when it comes to products, but for people who really are trying to discover products I can definitely see the benefits of these boxes!

    Jenny // Geeky Posh

    • Same here! My routine products rarely change, so I don’t really have a need for sub boxes either. It’s something fun for once in a while, but after the next month I know I’ll be unsubbing!

  • I love the idea of minis and trying samples of products, but I found whenever I had done a subscription service in the past that I just never used half of the stuff in there. I totally agree that there should be an opt-out option because there are always products that some people aren’t going to use, or shades that you know you don’t want and would rather not receive at all.

    The way I still get my fix is buying Sephora Favourites sets when they have one that looks good to me. Because at least that way you can see exactly what you’re getting and figure out if the number of products you’re interested in is going to be worth the price you’re paying for the set. They’re definitely pricier than most subscription boxes but I prefer having that control and only paying for a box/set that I know I’m going to use most of.

    • I wonder how these subscription boxes work behind the scenes – is it that hard logistically to take the catering one step further? I’ve heard that they’re generally a rip-off (lol) since they either get the samples for free or for pretty cheap. I’ll be unsubbing at the end of my 3 month cycle though, it’s something I did for a bit of fun.

      Good tip on those Sephora sets – I’ve never gotten a set just because a lot of my base products don’t change and I don’t see the need to switch out to something new when it works just fine for me. I do have my eye on that soko beauty set though!

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