Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Birchbox December 2012 Review

I have also been sitting on my Birchbox since I received it last week. I just managed to try all of the products, though, so I can tell you something coherent and meaningful about them!

What Birchbox thinks my box looked like.

In the December box, I got:

Thymes Body Lotion in Naia (1.5 oz), approximate retail value $4.05

Thymes Body Lotion

If a flower was pretending to be a grapefruit, it would smell a little bit like this lotion. Unfortunately, it is a super mild scent that fades almost immediately. I love getting big fatty samples, but this is really the most "blah" lotion I have ever tried. I will stick to the 400 lotions I already have, thanks.

Thymes Body Lotion in Lotus Santal (no size listed, about 0.15oz), approximate retail value $0.41

Thymes Body Lotion 2.0

This lotion is much more attractive-smelling than the "Naia" scent, with a great sort of woody, spice-laden aroma. If I gotten this scent in the larger size, I would be thrilled with this sample. Although some people have tut-tutted a bit about having two of the same sample in one box, I did appreciate getting this because I think the scent is fabulous and there is some chance I might buy this if I am ever in urgent need of lotion. (That being said, I wish I had a fifth product to try this month!)

Keratase Nutritive Nectar Thermique (0.68 oz), approximate retail value $5.60

Keratase Nutritive Nectar Thermique. (I got two of these.)

I'm still a little confused about what this product even is or why I have it. According to the package, this is "nourishing care with heat-protective agent for dry to very dry hair". I don't have dry hair, but I am assuming that I got this because I have said 'damage' is one of my concerns?

I have long hair so I don't heat style my hair because I don't want to fry it. I also shower at night so it's not even really practical for me to heat-style. However, for you, dear readers, I made an attempt. I got my hair wet in the morning, put in this product, and then blow dried it. The Birchbox website says to use "a dime-sized amount", but since I have buttloads of hair I used a considerable amount more than that (maybe a third of the packet).

Hey you! Look at my pretty hair!

Basically, to the best of my knowledge there was no effect. Damage-prevention is a long-term goal, and I don't think there is any way to measure efficacy using foil samples (even huge foil samples like these!). And because they are foil, this product will probably dry up before I get a chance to use it again.

For those of you who, like me, don't heat style your hair, just go ahead and use this as a leave in conditioner after you shower. Who knows... maybe your hair will be healthier as a result.

ModelCo Shine Ultra Lip Gloss in Berry Pink, retail value $16.00

ModelCo Shine Ultra Lip Gloss

Remember the Naked Princess gloss I received in October that smelled like cotton candy? This is even more sickly sweet smelling than that was. If you want your face to smell like watermelon Jolly Ranchers, this is the lip gloss for you. This product could easily be packaged in Lisa Frank drawings and sold to 5th graders. It has virtually no pigment, which could be seen as a good thing or a bad thing. In this case, I am actually okay with it since it fits in with a more natural, dewy look (unlike the Be a Bombshell lipgloss from the December Ipsy which looked like it ought to be pigmented but failed at it). It's also not sticky, which is nice. I do love the packaging and think it is brilliant to put a mirror on the side of a lip gloss. Overall, it would be a great product if it didn't smell so horrible!

Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream in Natural Glow (0.17 oz), approximate retail value $3.90

I don't have a picture of this item, so have a unicorn instead.

I left this at home, so it is not available to be photographed until I get back from vacation in January. However, I did try it. I really can't say anything nice about it except that I love the smell (tea tree oil is one of my favorite things) and the color matched my face pretty well. Unfortunately, it has pretty inadequate coverage given the magnitude of my skin problems. If I had perfect skin, this would be a much better product for me.

As a side note, I am becoming increasingly discomforted by the lack of BB and CC creams that provide options for women of color. There are two colors for this CC cream: "warm glow" and "natural glow". In other words, "white" and "whiter". I understand why this would be the case for Asian companies, but Juice Beauty operates out of California. I am almost 100% certain that there are non-white people in California, and I am not sure why they are being so blatantly excluded from makeup lines.

One other thing worth noting, since, like, science and stuff... "Fruit Stem Cells"?! Really?! REALLY?! That's not how science works. This company is capitalizing on its customers being science-illiterate. Don't fall for it.

Total box value: $26.23


  1. I am curious, have you always gotten so much product in your Birchbox? Mine seems to have gotten less and less in it. My December one had a single sample size bottle of clarifying shampoo. The rest of the box was made up of two perfume samples, one each for male and female, a stick on eye gel sample, a matchbook size blush sample and one packet of foot cream. And I wouldn't want to forget the $50. Coupon for a upscale gown rental company. I don't know about you,but I have no use for most of these products. Do you have to write a blog about them to receive decent product? Love your blog.

    1. Annie- I started Birchbox in September, so I only have a few months of reference, but they are cataloged here:

      I seriously doubt Birchbox knows I am blogging about them, though, especially since this is a super new blog.

  2. LMFAO! Yeah. I think you're right, last time I was in CA (2005) I'm pretty sure I saw at least one non-white person while I was there! Great review! I like the box you got only slightly better than the box I got

  3. Good comment on the obvious discrimination I know they are making to upper middle class white tree hugging women but jeez could you be a little more obvious? dummies.

  4. Having been born and raised (and still a resident) in California, I can assure everyone that there are are definitely non-white people here. 100% for sure! your reviews, keep it up!

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