Guest Post – Marcia’s Take on Subscription Beauty Boxes

If you keep up with beauty trends online then you’ve surely read about all of the beauty subscription boxes. There are more and more coming out. These subscription boxes are different than buying from Coterie or Hautelook because you don’t know what you are getting when you receive the box. I like to compare them to a Surprise Party that you’ve made for yourself. The opinions of these boxes are as varied as the variety of them.

I’ve got two to share with you today – Birchbox and Allure’s Sample Society which is also known as Beauty Bar. Birchbox is $10 while Allure’s is $15. Whenever you read an article about these boxes it’s too late to get that box so basically this article and ones I feature on Beauty Info Zone are just to give you an idea of what you’ll get each month. Sometimes you’ll be thrilled, sometimes you’ll be totally bummed out and sometimes you’ll think that the box is okay with a “but” in your voice.

Sample Society’s October box (Beauty contains 6 sample size items. The first two times I got Sample Society it contained 1 full size item but not this month. Here’s the goodies with a quick opinion of each one:

1.     –  Oscar Blandi Pronto Wet Instant Volumizing Conditioner; opinion- Oscar Blandi has a well deserved reputation for hair care and this is a nice size sample but I prefer to use a matching shampoo and conditioner.

2.     –  Kate Somervile ExfoliKate; opinion – this is a larger size sample than you’d usually get and Kate Somerville is known for this exfoliating treatment. I’d guess you could get 3 – 4 uses out of this. It’s not unusual to find this in gwp or subscription boxes though.

3.   –    Jane Iredale Tantasia; opinion – this is a self tanner sample. It’s enough for your face but not enough for more than that.

4.    –   Herban Essentials Lavender Towelette; opinion – personally I hate lavender but if it was a different scent it would be fine to throw in a makeup bag for an emergency. But it’s just one towelette.

5.    –   Erno Laszlo Phormula 3-9 Repair Balm; opinion – a tiny sample that might be fine for travel but I’m not sure I’ll ever use it.

6.    –   Aromachology Clean & Fresh Eau de Parfum – opinion – a small sample of one of those laundry soap type fragrances. Points for it being a mini spray but points removed for the scent.

Sample Society always includes a little Allure booklet talking about the products in the box and it’s written like mini articles. There’s also a $15 gift code if you wanted to buy a full size of any of these items.

BIRCHBOX GOOP BOX: Several times a year Birchbox will offer you the choice of getting a special box. One time they did Teen Vogue and I skipped it thinking I’m not a teen. But when I saw what people got I was kicking myself. Therefore I decided to get the Goop Box. Goop is the website curated by Gwynth Paltrow and since we are practically twins I went for it.

1.    –   per-fect beauty lip perfection gel; opinion – this tiny, one use sample is overshadowed by the cute flower packaging. A very messy way to try a lip color once. Fail.

2.    –   Eve Lom Cleanser and Muslin Cloth; opinion – Eve Lom cleanser has a great reputation and I love the Muslin Cloths. I’ve gotten this before in other ways and I like it for home use or to put in an overnight bag. I’m a big fan of muslin cloths anyway so having a fresh one to use is a plus for me.

3.    –   DDF Wrinkle Resist Plur Pore Minimizer; opinion – this is a small moisturizing serum. DDF works well for me and I’m willing to try this but it will probably be a year until I do considering how many skincare samples these boxes send.

4.    –   Chantecaille Faux Cils Mascara; opinion – before you get excited you need to know that this is a sample size. I’m still happy though because I have read raves about this mascara and I almost always get a month’s wear out of these sample sizes.

5.    –   The Lifestyle Extra: Luna Lemon Zest bar; opinion – some of Birchbox’s lifestyle extras have been total bombs (ugly paper coasters anyone??). At least this one is edible and a flavor I like.

What do you think of October’s boxes? Is there one you’d want? Are you willing to put out $10 or $15 for either of these? I have a feeling you know which one I prefer and which one I’m giving one last chance.

From our partners


  1. I got the Birch Box this month. Except for the lipgloss, I got totally different stuff from you. I agree the lip gloss was just, meh. I’ve tried it for a couple of months, but I think I’m going to probably cancel it.

    • Sometimes I think I would rather save the $10 month until I have enough for something I really want instead of samples I don’t want or use.

  2. Birchbox never seems to impress me, but Beauty Bar is OK and I like Glossy Box and Beauty Box Five OK.

  3. Birchbox is the one that’s the most consistent for me. I need to start saving this money though for something important like an Anastasia palette!

  4. I ordered the special “goop” box. Have to say I am not super excited to get it, having seen what was inside. 🙁


  1. […] I thought of Jordana Best Lash Extreme Mascara, was it a love or hate? Also check out some of the Subscription boxes I’ve received and what I think. Jordana […]