Birchbox September 2016 Review

It’s a weird month when Birchbox shows up after Ipsy.

Here’s what I received:

Yes to Grapefruit CC cream in Light and Light Medium (estimated 0.1oz), estimated retail value $0.94

I’m not really the right target audience for CC creams, since I want my foundations to have the coverage of house paint. Like the last CC cream I tried (the Juice Beauty one that inspired by Beauty Bullshit series!), this feels like placebo makeup. I can see that I am putting something on my face, so I feel like it must look a LITTLE better… right? Right?

If you already have perfect skin, but you like the idea of wearing face makeup, you may enjoy this product. The “light” color was actually a pretty nice shade for me. It just happens to perform none of the functions that I want from my makeup… It does smell like grapefruit, though.

Swatches of the Yes to Grapefruit CC cream in light on the left and light medium on the right.

I wish that there was some way to let Birchbox know that there is pretty much a zero percent chance that they’ll sell me a sheer foundation product. Sorry, guys. Try someone whose acne doesn’t look like an unfinished pointillism portrait all over their face.

VOESH New York Collagen Gloves – Premium Manicure Hand Mask (1 set of gloves), approximate retail value $6.67
This is some weirdass shit, here. If you’ve ever worn latex gloves and thought, “I wish that these were gooey on the inside”, VOESH has your solution.

The idea behind these is that you put them on their hands, and they marinate in a solution of collagen and vitamin E. I guess they also protect from UV light? Because you’re wearing them in the sun? Really, they’re just gloves full of lotion.

You can rip off the tips of the gloves if you want to paint your nails AND look like a dork at the same time.

The glove itself is two layers: an outer layer that is a traditional glove material and an inner layer that feels like dryer sheets. I did use these gloves while painting my nails and, unfortunately, the stringiness of the dryer sheet material seriously interfered with my manicuring. It really wasn’t a functional product.

I see literally no benefit to this product for anyone who owns any form of lotion. Lotion can give you hundreds of uses; a $20 packet of these gives you three AND you look absurd AND they don’t work, both in design (because of the awkward inner layer) or scientifically (because soaking your hands in collagen obviously doesn’t restore collagen in your hands).

Yes to Blueberries Age Refresh Cleansing Facial Towelettes (8 wipes), retail value $2.99
I love these products so much that I already use them every day. I actually have a full review here! It’s not necessarily super exciting to get a product you already own, but hey. I know I’ll definitely use these guys.

Ruffian Nail Lacquer in Hedge Fund (full size at 0.17oz), retail value $10Ruffian, the fashion brand, just released their first nail polish. The colors are pretty, the packaging is lovely, but DAMN is this pricey when you factor in its tiny size. $10 for 0.17oz is $58.82 per ounce. That’s almost four times more expensive per ounce than, say, OPI ($8 for 0.5oz is $16 per ounce).

Hedge fund is a mossy green that my boyfriend says reminds him of Naked Juice’s Green Machine smoothies.

Coastal Scents Eyeshadow Sample in Set 34 Thrill Ride (0.07oz), approximate retail value $3.06 
I am the first to admit that I have had some trouble with Coastal Scents’ eyeshadow quality. These four colors in particular, though, are really lovely and buttery and pigmented. I was bummed initially to have gotten these, but I was quite happy once I swatched them.

Pinehurst is a satin forest green.
Burnished Brunette is, contrary to its name, a satin dark gray.
Golden Sienna is a shimmery, foiled-looking bronzey gold.
Boca Mocha is shimmery medium brown with an almost pink-y sheen.

All four colors are really lovely.

Total Box Value: $23.66

I’m definitely content with this box, though I’m not ecstatic. Some products weren’t for me, but I enjoyed trying them. I was pleasantly surprised by the eyeshadow and I was very happy with the nail polish. I think the box would have been less underwhelming if I had never tried the Yes To Blueberries wipes since those are genuinely one of my favorite products in the whole wide world, but it’s not Birchbox’s fault that I already own those. When you add in the value of the Birchbox points system (which I LOVE), I become much more pleased. In fact, if you’ll excuse me, I have a shitload of points that I’ve racked up in the Birchbox store… Time for some free blush.

If you suddenly realized that a Birchbox subscription would fill your heart with joy, you are, as always, welcome to use my referral link here.

1. That CC cream was so awful. I don’t know if you put it on your face, but I think mine interacted badly with the moisturizer I put on my face and it ended up flaking off all over the place. It looked awful. Even if it didn’t flake off, it barely “color corrected” or hid anything. Say no, people!

I wish I would’ve gotten those eyeshadows. I’ve tried modifying my profile many times, but they insist on sending me a lot of hair sprays, like heat protectant, volumizers, etc. I have so many now.

2. I did put it on my face. No flaking or anything, but I had to put real makeup on over it!

3. Speaking of full-coverage foundation: I had some time to kill and was in Sephora last sunday, and they did their color match thing and came up with Cover FX, and slapped it all over my face, and I said I guess it looks OK, it certainly is a good match, and then I went to take it off and I was ASTOUNDED at how high-coverage it was. I had been thinking “huh I must be having a good skin day” and. . . nope. I have very pale skin — the foundation I’ve been using is Hello Flawless in “I’m Pure for Sure” ivory — and I am using the SECOND lightest shade of the Cover FX. I got a sample and wore it out today and it has held without running or creasing. Anyway you might check it out, sadly it’s spendy as hell.

4. I got almost a completely different box:

a) Dr. Lipp Nipple Balm for Lips: It feels like a nice thick moisturizer but leaves a slight yellow tinge and would be much more impressive if I didn’t have a dry patch on my upper lip for three days while using it.

b) Grand Central Beauty S.M.A.R.T. Skin Perfecting Polisher: Supposedly a moisturizer/toner/exfoliator, I’ve noticed no effect except a filmy feeling on my skin and lots of little clear beads that don’t go away unless you rinse it off.

c) Keratherapy Keratin Infused Deep Conditioning Masque: A pretty intense conditioner. This, I liked.

d) Serge Normant Meta Luxe Hair Spray: I don’t really use hair spray, so I haven’t tried this.

e) Same nail polish in Delirium (purple): I love the color, but the brush was so soft I had trouble using it and the formula is, hands down, the worst I’ve ever tried (and I’m super-cheap). After one day, there was extensive wear on the tips and after two it’s starting to look chipped. I can easily dent the surface with my very soft nails.

Overall, this box was super disappointing.