February Birchbox Review

by Her Happy Balance on February 13, 2013

Happy hump day! We’ve reached the coveted middle point of the week, all down hill from here on out folks! How was your Monday and Tuesday? Any healthysELF elves out there? Did you get in your leg workout on Monday? I got in a 5k run and some squats and lunges. Okay, let’s get right into it, this review is upon request for a very special lady out there, Maryana! I hope you find this helpful! πŸ˜‰

Birchbox is a monthly subscription service that will send you 4-5 beauty and lifestyle samples.

“Every month, you’ll receive a box filled with beauty, grooming, and lifestyle samples from both up-and-coming and well known brands. Each delivery will include a mix of categories, as well as lifestyle items. Samples are generously sized, with enough product to allow you to figure out if they’re right for you.” –Birchbox

The box is available for both men and woman. The women’s box is $10/month, whereas the men’s box is $20/month. To receive the women’s box, you must first sign up on a waiting list (I was on the waiting list for about 2 months). The men’s box does not currently have a waiting list. When you sign up, you are asked to answer a few questions about yourself and create a profile. Some of the things they want to know are what your hair color is, skin coloring is, and the type of beauty issues you’re concerned with. From there, the products you receive are supposed to be based off of your personal profile. I’ve been receiving these boxes since December; here’s a look at the latest shipment:

It's delivered in a bright pink packing box, it's fun to get such a brightly colored package!

It’s delivered in a bright pink packing box. It’s fun to get such a brightly colored package in the mail!

I believe the men’s box arrives at their doorstep in a more discreet box, it’s themed with blue and gray colors. Anyway, inside of the pretty pink box rested this brown box:

They really hold true to the pink theme with the tissue paper...

They really hold true to the pink theme with the tissue paper…

Each Birchbox comes with an explanatory notecard. On one side it explains the theme for that month’s box, and on the reverse side it has a breakdown of the products you receive and how much every product runs for at retail size. When I lifted away the tissue paper, this is what I saw:

For some reason, Birchbox likes to put a couple of small items into their own little gold box holders...I guess it makes it look fancier.

For some reason, Birchbox likes to put a couple of small items into their own little gold box holders…I guess it makes it look fancier. AfterΒ I ripped into the little box-within-a-box, I discovered these other items:


Here’s the breakdown of what the box included:

  • Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate and Caramel square, retail 5.32oz for $4.25
  • Color Club nail polish in Wild Cactus, retail 0.5oz for $8
  • Perfume sample from Juicy Couture in Couture La Ra, retail 1.7oz for $70
  • Dr. Jart+ Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm, retail 1.5oz for $36
  • Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle, retail 8oz for $21.95

I’m excited to use the wild cactus polish, it’s a crazy color but it would be fun for the spring and summer. I’ll definitely give the hair protector (it’s paraben and sulfate free) a try too, as it is supposed to help seal the cuticle of your hair and prevent frizz. The BB cream is SPF 25, tinted, and contains “rare caviar extract” which is supposed to promote collagen production. Β Those 3 samples will be put to good use…but the chocolate and perfume? Okay, don’t get me wrong, but the chocolate square is not what I signed up for. It’s the “lifestyle” sample. I know for some of you, your life may very well revolve around chocolate, but I am not really a huge fan. I would have rather received another beauty sample. As for the perfume, in my January box I got 2 samples that are still sitting in my bathroom. In all honestly, I will probably end up throwing them out, so getting another sample of that wasn’t exactly what I had in mind. I guess it would be a good idea for me to throw the samples into my gym bag so I can freshen up a bit after a workout. My favorite box so far was the December box, not only did it have a special fancy holiday box:

Oooo! ahhhhh! So shiny! :)

Oooo! Ahhhhh! So shiny! πŸ™‚

But I also got some great samples and ended up using every one of them (again…besides the perfume). It even had a full-size mascara that retails at about $20, that more than paid for the box!

December's loot.

December’s loot.

Overall, in hopes that I’ll get another awesome box like I did in December, I’ll probably hold out and keep the subscription going for another month. Β But Birchbox needs to step up their game a little, and for pete’s sake I don’t want any more perfume samples. I take showers! I have my own perfume that I like to use!

*I paid for the Birchbox subscription with my own money and was not given compensation for the review. All thoughts and opinions are my own*


Have you ever tried Birchbox? Did you get TONS of perfume samples too?

Do you have a favorite monthly subscription?

Comments on this entry are closed.

RachLapchak February 13, 2013 at 8:04 am

I never heard of this before but sounds like something really fun to do. It’s always nice to get little surprises in the mail. πŸ™‚

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:15 am

Yes, it definitely is great to get some mail πŸ™‚ Even if you know it’s coming, it’s still a surprise on the day it arrives!

allisonhayes91 February 13, 2013 at 9:05 am

I love birchbox! The lady I nanny for and her husband both have a subscription to it. Such a cool idea.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:11 am

I’d love to know what the guy gets in his box! From what I’ve read online, the men’s samples are slightly more substantial…they should be considering its double the price for the girl box!

quartercenturysouthernliving February 13, 2013 at 8:24 am

I have never done Birchbox, but it seems like a pretty cute and fun idea! πŸ™‚

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:13 am

Yeah, it’s a fun idea πŸ™‚ I just better no got any more perfume samples. I can only use them so fast!

pickyrunner February 13, 2013 at 8:38 am

Ummm I LOVE THAT THEY GAVE YOU CHOCOLATE. Haha as someone who doesn’t wear makeup, that was really exciting to me.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:12 am

Haha yes that makes sense to me πŸ™‚ I’m jealous that you don’t need to wear make-up! That must make your morning routine a nice quick one!

Running In Heels February 13, 2013 at 10:10 am

I have been on the waiting list for a while, and I’m so excited to try this!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:08 am

Hope you love it! πŸ™‚

Nikki February 13, 2013 at 9:32 am

This was my beef with Birchbox, the chocolate and the perfume…always, and it seemed like a waste. Like you, I had a couple of awesome boxes that contained really cool products and/or full size cosmetics that I would use…but I was finding more and more boxes to be duds. This is why I switched over to Goodebox. I’m working on a review of my first box, hopefully next week…it is really awesome. I am so glad I made the switch.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:10 am

Ooo I can’t wait to check out your Goodebox review! Ill keep an eye out it it πŸ™‚

Alex @ therunwithin February 13, 2013 at 9:54 am

very cool, I have never done birchbox before but I love the concept behind it

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:09 am

Me too! It’s great to try something before you buy the full-size product πŸ™‚

Flake And Cake February 13, 2013 at 10:17 am

I’ve never heard of Birchbox, it sounds amazing though!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:07 am

I love trying out different monthly subscription boxes, so many goodies that I never would’ve tried before!

jessiebearwhat February 13, 2013 at 10:31 am

oooh look at all those goodies!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:06 am

Fun, right? πŸ™‚ Love getting mail!

Maureen February 13, 2013 at 10:59 am

Okay, I love chocolate, but there’s something weird about receiving chocolate with all my beauty samples. But maybe that’s just me. And I’m with you on the perfume too, I have a few that I like, but I wouldn’t be interested in samples. Still, sounds like a fun thing to try for a few months!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:06 am

Yeah, it is fun! But unless they step up their game I’m going to have to end my subscription. Especially when there are so many other great monthly boxes I’d like to try!

jumpeatrun February 13, 2013 at 12:57 pm

Birchbox sounds pretty cool- I love the idea πŸ™‚

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:04 am

It’s fun to get a package in the mail full of surprises!

Maryana Jurbiy February 13, 2013 at 12:58 pm

I actually subscribed to a three month BB (this will be my last month) – and so far it was ok… nothing spectacular that I went WOW but nothing too bad either.
I actually subscribed to BeautyArmy as well (for a whole year). It is $12 a month but you get up to 6 products and you can choose what you want in your box. The samples that come out as your choices are also based on a beauty questionnaire, however, you can retake the quiz as many times as you want so you can change the profile and thus receive exactly what you want/need.
I am currently on a wait list for Ipsy, which is also $10 a month but everybody gets same stuff and it comes in a little make up bag. I did a lot of research on it, and from what I saw the samples come in pretty good sizes (unlike BB – I hate those one time use packets!!!) and they were something that I would really enjoy to try.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 9:41 am

BeautyArmy sounds fun, I’m glad you’re liking that! I guess I’m a little weird in that I don’t want to know the products I’m going to get ahead of time though, I just like surprises too much πŸ™‚ But I’ve heard good things about Ipsy! You’ll have to Instagram some photos of it so I can check it out πŸ™‚

maryana90 February 13, 2013 at 1:04 pm

Thank you for this post! I was just wondering if my disappointment was just due to a bad luck or are other people also not too happy with BB.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 9:42 am

And no problem! Yeah, I’ve been a bit disappointed too :/ I’ll give them another chance in March but if things don’t change, I think that’s it for me.

Bits of Mimi February 13, 2013 at 1:48 pm

I’ve heard about Birchbox through my friend, but I don’t want to sign up for it if they keep sending perfumes, haha.

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 7:03 am

Yeah, I think I’ll hold out one more month and see what they send me for March. If its more perfume ill have to call it quits!

Alex @ Cookie Dough Katzen February 13, 2013 at 3:29 pm

This looks like the best combo of a box to get. Chocolate and fashion things sounds great to me! I don’t have any monthly subscriptions although a magazine would be nice one day!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 9:38 am

A magazine would be nice! I’m always jealous of the people who bring SELF and other fitness mags to the gym. We’ve gotta get on this!

Jenny February 13, 2013 at 8:59 pm

I agree with the perfume thing! That seems like a waste! I have never met anyone that wears out there perfume in a month…lol hopefully your next box won’t have any!

Her Happy Balance February 14, 2013 at 9:39 am

The only way I could ever use up all of this perfume is if I started layering all the scents together…and that just would NOT smell good! I’m hoping for a better box next month too πŸ™‚

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