May 2015 Birchbox Review

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My May 2015 Birchbox was a so-so mix. The box was pretty (though not as lovely as April’s!), but the products left much to be desired.

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Not a Perfume by Juliette Has a Gun. The base of this scent, according to the BB website, is “Cetalox,” which is a synthetic substitute used for grey amber, often found in other perfume mixes. While the site says it’s “elegant, pure, spicy, and completely allergen-free,” all I thought was “musty old lady.” I spritzed it on my wrists and chest and within two minutes, tried washing it off. While I diminished it significantly, I tried layering Tokyomilk’s Arsenic over it to mask it somehow. Five hours after first applying, it finally hit the “eh, all right” stage.

Evercolor Automatic Liner in Black Cherry by Mally Beauty. I’ll call myself out: I have super oily eyelids — strange, right? I often avoid pencil liners because they’re moot — they rub off after two hours. While I layered this liner on top of some eyeshadow (the black cherry looks great with pinks and plums, btw!), it started to fade as I hit the afternoon.

Sea Salt Texturizing Spray by Harvey Prince. As always, smells lovely, like the perfume Hello from the same brand. My hair is always wavy, so, while this enhanced it slightly without being sticky or stiff, I don’t want to create false hopes that this is the end-all-be-all of sea salt sprays. Sorry, straight-haired ladies!

Stem Cellular CC Cream in Desert Glow by Juice Beauty. Birchbox likes to send my endless BB and CC creams, which never provide enough coverage and make my skin slick and break-out. I like Juice Beauty for it’s natural ingredients and dedication to being green — things I, hopefully, endeavor to be someday — but the color was a touch off and, as you’ll see for the hydrating gel review below, I can’t use moisturizing products during the humid springs and summers.

Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel by Marcelle. To go with my oily eyelids, I also have (drumroll…) very oily skin. While I would have appreciated this sample a couple of months ago, when my skin was dry and flaky due to the cold, I can’t really use this now that the weather has turned in New England. Last week’s average temperature was about 80 degrees: I’m looking for ways to cut out excess moisture, not inspire more.

I’m on the fence about staying with Birchbox. I’ve been subscribing since July 2013, so almost two full years. Every so often, I get something that entirely justifies my loyalty, products I now adore: amika dry shampoo; Ruffian nail polishes; Liz Earle face wash; Benefit mascaras; Davines anything. But then I also get a month or two (or three) in a row, when I get all duds, tiny tubes that I end up tossing because I can’t stand the clutter on my bathroom shelves. Maybe I’ll give Birchbox until July 2015 to redeem themselves…

Do you subscribe to Birchbox? Or another monthly beauty box subscription? What do you love? Hate? What other subscriptions do you recommend?

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