I’m a terrible person to buy presents for. Trust me, my family HATES my birthday and Christmas because my response is “Uhm…I don’t know.” I’m the type of person that if photography I want something I will buy it for myself. That means that most of the gifts within reason aren’t options. My mom thought outside of the box, to a different type of box and surprised me with the perfect gift this holiday season! On Christmas Eve the postman dropped my first ever Birchbox subscription package off. Through the last few months I had commented on how many bloggers use Birchbox and pondered if I should sign up myself, but never quite did. My mom did the jump for me and bought me a year of Birchbox. She thought it would be a wonderful opportunity for me to try new products – as that had become a recent hobby of mine, and put the monthly subscription to use on my blog.
I’m excited about this adventure because I’m a fairly recent convert to the world of beauty products. It wasn’t until 2014 I owned my first lipstick (scandalous I know) and having an assortment of products sent to me will increase my knowledge and willingness to try things.
My first thought was that the box cute. It’s a pretty blue hue with gold embossed details. I’ll probably use it to store something in as I’m huge on random storage containers of the odd variety.
I did feel pretty proud when the Birchbox account liked on Instagram.
December 2014 Birchbox Review
Catherine Malandrino Style de Paris (1oz Size.00) – Perfumes are not normally my thing. I think I own two and one is a cheapie I’ve had for years from Victoria’s Secret and the other is a One Direction perfume (shut it, it smells good) At first I thought I wouldn’t like this because I am so picky. That, and the packaging gave off a bit of “older lady” vibes. I’m no cougar. I enjoyed that the sample came in a tiny spritzer bottle instead of dab-on. I’ll admit I was wrong from first judgements and I really liked the scent. The perfume is a bit muskier than my usual tastes, but it still has a classic and feminine scent with overall sweet tones. I’d be careful with how much you put on as it can quickly become too much and a little bit did last fairly long. Style de Paris is a perfume with vibes that is perfect for summer nights. 3/5
The Balm Staniac Tint of Hint in Beauty Queen Red (.3oz ) – I’m someone who is big into convenience with makeup and this multi-use and easy application product was a quick fave. Staniac can be used on both your lips and cheeks for a touch of color. It’s texture is the close relative to a lip gloss, but maybe a little less sticky. I was happy with how long it lasted – I didn’t find myself touching up my lips as much as I would with lipstick or gloss. It’s a very subtle change in color, I’d say only a level or so up. In the December Birchbox I received Beauty Queen Red. It turned my lips the grown up version of cherry popsicle lips. It wasn’t the most moisturizing on my lips so I did add a chapstick layer every time it dried so my lips wouldn’t chap out. I was wary of putting the stain on my cheeks because I was afraid of looking like a possessed doll, but it’s the same as with the lips with a barely there color. The packaging and typography is fun, but gives a bit of a 90s retro vibe. As much as I loved the product I don’t know if I’d own more than one of these, but I would use it from time to time. Staniac Tint of Hint is perfect for those casual carefree days when you just want to give you face a quick hint of life. 3.5/5
Sumita Eyeshadow Pencil in Jaipur Gold (.06oz ) – The first thing I found out about the Sumita tumblr makeup photography lips brand is that it’s a Bollywood/Indian inspired line which I think is really neat and makes the product more unique. I loved this pencil! LOVED! It was SO SOFT! After mentally thinking back I don’t think I’ve ever experienced an eye pencil this soft. I was a bit worried about breakage due to the texture, but that proved to be aimless. The eye pencil glides on super easy. After a day of wear the color was still there. It didn’t smudge or crack or disappear. Those are rare qualities my friend. The best part though to me? The color was vibrant and noticeably gold but not overwhelming on the eyes. This is the middle ground that I have finally been looking for because so many others were on one of the two ends of the spectrum. I will definitely be trying out more colors from this line in the future! I had been searching for quality gold eye pencils since I read The Hunger Games. The Sumita Jaipur Gold Eyeshadow Pencil is a gold eye pencil that even Cinna would be proud of. 4.5/5
Vasanti BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator (4.23oz ) – The main ingredients in this were papaya enzymes, aloe vera, and coconut which created a very heavenly light scent. Made me almost feel like I was at the beach. Almost. Since receiving the December 2014 Birchbox I have used the Vasanti BrightenUp! around 2-3 times a week and wow, I notice the difference. It feels like I’ve been splurging and getting weekly facials when all I’ve been doing is adding this to my nightly fash wash. The rejuvenator does exactly as it promises and leaves my face feeling fresh and renewed. There was an instant noticeable uptick in face liveliness. My biggest faults aren’t ones I have personally, but this product may not be for everybody. The cleansing beads are noticeable on your face – it gives off a sandy feel which won’t go over well with people that may have texture issues. I also wouldn’t use it regularly if I had super sensitive skin as it could almost make things more rough. With Vasanti BrightenUp! a little bit goes a long way to va-va-voom! 4/5
Whish Shave Cream in Acai Grapefruit (1.5ml ) – A Birchbox exclusive, the smell of Whish Shaving cream is it’s best feature. The acai grapefruit was the right amount of fruity to enjoy without being overpowering. I’d love to try some of the other available options such as pomegranate, almond, or lemongrass. Whish is also full of eco-friendly ingredients which is another massive plus. During application the cream felt very soft to the touch and less heavy than other shaving creams I’ve encountered. That’s about where the positives ended. I didn’t notice much of a difference on either closeness of shave or smoothness of skin after use. It also seemed like my razor got clogged up faster than usual and it wasn’t cause my hair was any longer. That was a major pain in the arse. While I loved the smell of this and would love my shave cream to always smell that way there weren’t any wow factors. For dollars a pop Whish Shave Cream is too lackluster for me to want to splurge on it, I’ll stick to the drug store brands. 2.5/5
Overall December 2014 Birchbox Review: 3.5/5
I’ve read through plenty of Birchbox reviews from other blogs and know that months can be very hit or miss. I would say the Decmber 2014 Birchbox was well worth the in my mind. I found two lovely products that I will be 100% buying again in the future and some I wouldn’t mind having in my occasional collection. Even my lowest rated item, wasn’t bad per say – just not worth the value. I’m not a person who would normally buy a dollar face scrub just to try, because what if it’s horrible? I don’t want to waste a huge chunk of change unless I know I love it. With Birchbox I get to push those boundaries and try different brands (often expensive brands) before taking the leap. I’m excited to see what my Birchbox subscription will bring!
I think no matter how each month’s box turns out, with Birchbox it’s best feature is the money you earn back by reviewing products each month. That way you can treat yourself by spending those points on the products you did find and love. Win, win.
If you’re interested in trying out Birchbox for yourself, click through my referral link here.
If you received the December 2014 Birchbox as well, what were your hits and misses? Would you guys like pictures of each individual product in use? What would YOU like to see from my Birchbox reviews in the next 11 months?
P.S. – Read and see the first step I had on this beauty journey.
Until next time,
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