Tuesday, November 18, 2014

November Birchbox Unboxing and Review

Hello there,

I continue to be absolutely swamped at work, with barely any time to sleep, much less time to blog.  But I thought I'd take a break and put together a quick one about my November Birchbox just because I loved it and want to share (even though I'm about 100 posts behind...) So you'll have to excuse the lack of good pictures, which tends to delay my reviews because I never have time to set up the whole thing.  So without further ado, here's my November box:
Birchbox November 2014 Review Unboxing

For those of you who aren't aware, Birchbox is an awesome service that costs $10 a month, and you get a fun monthly box of beauty products to sample delivered to your door.  If you review each of the things you get to try (usually 4-5), you get $1 in credit for each review to use in their store, making the net cost of the box about $5-6.  You can check it out here if you're interested (if you sign up through the link, we each get an extra 50 points, or $5).

Birchbox November 2014 Review Unboxing amika Nourishing Hair Mask 20 ml sampleAnyway, the first product in the box is the amika Nourishing Mask (20 ml, $4 value).  This is a paraben-free treatment that conditions and repairs hair with superfruit sea buckthorn berry.  I'll be honest, I have no idea what sea buckthorn berry does, but I actually already have and use this regularly, and I can say that I'm a fan because it smells nice and makes my hair soft.  Although the directions on the card say to use this once a week and to leave it on for 5-10 minutes, you can (and I do) use this more regularly, and I don't have any issues with build up.  Anyway, glad to have a convenient travel size!

The second product is the derma e Evenly Radiant Brightening Cleanser (1 oz, approximately $2.60 value).  This face wash contains green tea and vitamins B3 and C, among other things, and is supposed to help brighten skin.  It's also pH balanced so it shouldn't dry out your skin, leaving it in worse shape long term than it started. I was just running out of my cleanser, and am always looking for products to brighten my complexion, so I'm excited to try this out.
Birchbox November 2014 Review Unboxing derma e dermae Evenly Radiant Brightening Cleanser 1 oz sample
The next sample is of Harvey Prince's Petaly Noir, a new "lush floral scent that evokes a midnight stroll among blossoming orchids."  According to Birchbox, this has notes of jasmine, orchid, lily of the valley and vanilla.  I love Harvey Prince (my go-to perfumes are by HP) despite a somewhat strange interaction with the president/CEO (I can't remember which), so I was excited to try this.  Unfortunately this is just way too heavy and musky for me, as I prefer light, sweet scents (admittedly, I am ok with smelling like a 15 year old girl.)

The next item is the Royal Apothic Cuppa Cuppa Firming Tea Treatment Mask (.33 oz, $9 value - full size is made up of 6 of these tubes).  This was the sample I picked out this month (Birchbox lets you choose one of your samples out of a selection. The other choices this month were a body wash, a facial peel that I've already tried, and the amika mask, which I incidentally got anyway).  Being that I love masks, and I love tea (especially as a cosmetic ingredient - how could tea ever be bad for my skin?), I couldn't say no to this, so I'm super excited to try it!  This is made with anti-oxidant rich tea and is supposed to firm and brighten skin.  I don't need any firming yet, but I'll take all the brightening I can get.

The next product is the theBalm cosmetics Cindy-Lou Manizer (.57 grams, $1.6 but honestly a fantastic sample size - this will literally last me months, at the very least).  I love theBalm products so was thrilled to get this one to try.  Their packaging is always super cute and their products (so far) are reliable and good quality.  I haven't really figured out how to use highlighter yet, but this is a pretty pink or peach/gold highlighter that I am more than happy to experiment with, and after brushing some on my cheekbones, I can at least say it's not too shimmery or sparkly that I have to be careful about application.  It would probably show up better on someone with slightly darker skin than me, but I thought it did give a nice glow!

Birchbox November 2014 Review Unboxing theBalm Cosmetics Cindy-Lou Manizer Sample
The final item in the box is a bonus and not a beauty sample, but I am certainly not complaining.  It's a piece of Vosges' Pink Himalayan Crystal Salt Caramel 70% cacao dark chocolate ($20 for a box of 12 chocolates, with three delicious sounding flavors of caramel).  Not much to say here - I know some people don't like getting food in their boxes, but feel free to throw chocolate my way any day.  Throw in some burnt sugar caramel and sea salt?  YES PLEASE (speaking of which, I just got a copy of Amy Poehler's Yes Please, courtesy of Birchbloggers and the Birchbox book of the month club, which I am super excited to read!)
Birchbox November 2014 Review Unboxing Vosges Pink Himalayan Crystal Salt Caramel

Anyway, that's my November Birchbox for you - overall I thought it was a very successful month.  Hope everyone else enjoyed their boxes as much as I did!

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