Wednesday, October 16, 2013

October 2013 Birchbox

I'm so excited about my October Box. I got some really awesome products that I can't wait to tell you all about. This month's theme is Beauty Buzz. Birchbox wanted to share some of it's most celebrated, talked about and loved products with its subscribers.
Birchbox is a beauty sample subscription service that for $10 a month will send you a customized box of 4-5 beauty and lifestyle products to try. I have discovered so many wonderful products through Birchbox and I honestly can't believe I didn't subscribe sooner. If you're interested in joining Birchbox, click here to sign up!

This month I got four fabulous samples, as well as a special Birchbox extra that was given to all subscribers. I received a nice balance of products, including haircare, skincare, and makeup - all of which are right up my alley.

New to the Beauty Protector family, this sulfate-free formula adds shine and volume.
Love Protect & Detangle? Use this nourishing conditioner with shea butter before spritzing.
Sample Value - $2.75 each, $21.95 each Full-Sized

I was SO thrilled to get this shampoo and conditioner duo. I am absolutely in love with my Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle Spray (I believe it was in my very first Birchbox), so I had high hopes for the rest of the line. The signature Beauty Protector scent is to die for (sort of sweet and creamy, with a hint of musk) and the smell was wafting from my Birchbox before I even took the lid off. There's a whole laundry list of happy-hair benefits from these powerhouses, but the one that particularly stands out to me is their Sulfate & Paraben free formulation. Many shampoos are full of harsh chemicals that strip your hair of its natural protective oils, so I am always on a hunt for those that opt for gentler alternatives. I also find it difficult to find a conditioner that strikes a perfect balance between being nourishing and being overly heavy or greasy. Beauty Protector wins in both of these regards. Since I've been using these two products my hair has been extra soft and silky, and has tons of shine.

Moisturizer that protects skin and balances oil levels with a patent-pending YS3 COMPLEX.

Sample Value - $20.67, $62 Full-Sized


After looking at the sneak peeks for October I had a strong suspicion that I'd be getting this sample. As someone who has angry skin I know that I'm a prime contender to try out acne products. I've had so many disappointments in the world of blemish fighting skincare that I don't have the highest of expectations anymore, but I have to say that this definitely surprised me for the better. This moisturizer has a super rich, creamy, luxurious feel on application, but finishes soft and matte. It's also one of the best oil controlling products I think I've ever tried. Normally my face is a strange combination of greasy and flaky, but after a few days of religious use I've developed super soft, happy skin. And that is exactly what Evologie has set out to do. Stay Clear cream is meant to break that terrible cycle of overly drying your skin while attempting to clear up acne, that in turn causes it to produce even more oil and clog your pores further. The price tag is a bit hefty, but for something that does what so few other moisturizers out there on the market can do, it's totally worth it. The ONLY thing I'd recommend being careful about is adding SPF in the morning, because this product does not offer any sun protection (and many acne treatments make your skin more sun sensitive!).

Bestselling stain that gives cheeks and lips a sheer, rosy tint.
Sample Value - $2.27, $17 Full-size

I'm a huge fan of cheek stains and tints. I think they provide such a beautiful, natural looking flush that looks good on just about anyone. I've tried quite a few different formulas from different brands, and I have to say that this might be one of my new favorites! Texture-wise, the Stainiac is more of a gel (compared to, say, Benetint, which is much more liquid like) that I find makes it very easy to apply and blend seamlessly. The color is a beautiful sheer rose, and it will keep your cheeks perfectly stained all day long. For proof, here's a picture that I took about 12 hours (8 of which involved work and all the craziness that goes along with it) after I applied the Staniac this morning.

Compared to other stains I also find that while it's a little less drying on the lips, I still prefer to use it on my cheeks. Will I purchase this? Maybe. Since I switch up my blush so often it takes me a long time to go through anything, so I have a feeling I'll have this sample for a while before I need to make a purchase decision.

Birchbox Extra: ChapStick Hydration Lock
$3.29 value

ChapStick is the mother of all lip balms. Although most of us immediately think of the traditional ChapStick (or for Katy Perry perhaps the cherry version), the brand does have a lot more to offer. This appears to be one of their newest formulations, that claims to provide 8 hours of moisturization. Birchbox recommends using it as a primer underneath lipstick and stains to keep your lips from drying out and your color lasting longer. Unfortunately for me (or maybe fortunately) I have at least 3 or 4 other ChapStick-esque products in use at the current moment, so I haven't been able to experiment with this too much. At the very least, my first impression is that it does have a nice feel to it, and I like the vanilla creme scent.

The Final Verdict
I love my box! I would definitely consider buying just about everything. At the moment I have so many full-sized products of similar types that I can't quite justify the purchase at this point, but I will definitely add the Stay Clear Cream and Beauty Protector Shampoo & Conditioner to my wish list.

Total Value: $31.73