A First Run With FabFitFun

Spring FabFitFun 2018

If you’re a regular in the YouTube beauty community, you’re probably no stranger to FabFitFun unboxings. Over the past couple of years I’ve religiously watched them on my favorite channels, because your girl is nosey and I’m always curious to see what people are receiving. FabFitFun is a seasonal subscription box that contains beauty, lifestyle, fashion, fitness and wellness items. Each box costs $50, however you’re guaranteed to receive over $200 worth of product.

While it’s always sounded like a great value,  I’ve been subscribed to so many other boxes throughout the years that it never felt like the right time for FabFitFun. Obviously no one ever needs a subscription box. They’re all about the anticipation and the surprise, and giving yourself something fun to look forward to. Now, I’m all about that #treatyoself mentality, but I still have a budget and try to make my purchases within reason. So I just went on my merry way, with the knowledge that maybe someday I’d give FabFitFun a try.

And then the Spring 2018 box happened.

There were quite a few things inside that piqued my interest, and for the first time I felt like I had serious FabFitFun FOMO. So I went ahead and pushed that subscribe button, purchased the box, and am finally here to let you guys know whether or not FabFitFun is actually deserving of the hype.

While the majority of the subscription services I’ve tried have centered around beauty, FabFitFun definitely has a lot more variety to offer. You can expect to receive a few beauty items in each seasonal box, but you’ll also get jewelry and other fashion items, home goods, fitness gear and more. If you appreciate beauty and personal care products, but don’t need a new box full of makeup every month, FabFitFun may be way more up your alley.

Now, I can imagine that one of the big deterrents for people with FabFitFun is the price. Each seasonal box is $49.99, which is no insignificant amount of money to shell out at once. This breaks down to $16.66 a month, which is more than you’d be paying for Ipsy or Birchbox. That being said, your $50 is going towards full-sized products with a much higher value than you’d expect from a $10 monthly subscription. As I mentioned before, each seasonal box is guaranteed to contain over $200 worth of goodies. I will put it out there that the listed retail value of some of these items is probably inflated for what they are (we’ll get more into that soon), but in general the extra $20 you’re spending over the course of three months pays out in the long run.

Also unlike some subscriptions where samples vary from person to person, everyone receives the same FabFitFun box each season with just a few variations (typically of color or style of particular item). They have also introduced choice items, so you can customize your box a little more to your personal taste. In this Spring box we had a choice of a beauty item as well as a jewelry item, which I actually was very thankful for. I had a strong preference in both categories, and knowing that I got exactly what I wanted made me happier with the box overall.

Speaking of which, let’s chat a little more about what this box actually contained. The first thing (pictured above) is the Physique 57 Massage Roller ($20). Oddly enough I think this was the thing I was most excited about. I suffer from tension headaches and my back is frequently knotted up. My husband is not the most confident massage giver, so I feel like this will make both of us happy. Not to mention the fact that it will probably feel amazing on my sore post-yoga legs.

Then we have the first choice item. We were given two beauty options to pick from, the KORRES Guava Body Butter ($24) or a pack of 5 KNC Beauty All Natural Collagen Infused Lip Masks ($24.99). I had actually just received the very same lip masks in a recent Boxycharm and wasn’t a huge fan of them, so picking the body butter was a very easy choice. I haven’t taken the seal off of this yet because I have a ton of other body lotion to use up first, but word on the street is that this stuff smells pretty incredible. I also generally enjoy KORRES products and appreciate that they use higher quality ingredients in their formulas. I have a feeling I’ll be ready to crack into this come late spring/early summer when my legs will really appreciate it.
Then there’s the Dermelect Cosmeceuticals Makeover Concealing Ridge Filler ($18). This nail treatment can be worn alone or under polish and is infused with peptides and strengthening ingredients to improve and restore weak, damaged nails. It’s a nice “your nails but better” shade with a slight shimmer to it that would probably be perfect to make your nails look healthier in between manicures. Having not had a chance to put this to the test the verdict is still out on whether or not it actually works, but as a person that enjoys doing their nails I was happy to see this in the box.
We also received a sample of Dove’s new Exfoliating Body Polish. This is listed as a bonus sponsored item, so it doesn’t count towards the total box value. I don’t ever mind getting extra freebies if they aren’t in place of a normal product, so I was fine with the fact that this was just a single use sample. I also have generally had good experiences with Dove’s body products, so I’m looking forward to giving this a try.

Next is the Murad Skin Perfecting Lotion ($40). It’s been a long time since I’ve owned a Murad product, but I’ve generally had favorable experiences with the brand in the past. This is a lightweight, oil-free moisturizer that sounds ideal for oily and blemish prone skin (which is exactly what I have). Having tested this out a few times it does feel very silky on the skin and doesn’t leave behind any greasy residue. Knowing that the warm weather is right around the corner and that my skin is about to ramp up the oil factor, this kind of product is actually coming to me at the perfect time. I’m looking forward to trying it out more fully and seeing how it works under makeup.

I am a total candle junkie, so this was another one of the big draws for me to purchase this box. We got one of three different fragrances from the Anderson Lilley Sunset Collection ($45), and all of them sounded pretty incredible. The one I received is called Manhattan Beach and has a very fresh, “windows open on a summer day” kind of scent that I really enjoy. I also love the copper vessel that it comes in (which I will totally repurpose once the candle itself has been burned through). While I appreciate that luxury candles give a clean burn and throw off more scent, $45 is really up there in price. One of my favorite luxury candle brands, Bijou Candles, sells their 10.3 oz vessels for $29, so I can’t imagine ever needing or wanting to spend more than that.

Now, as a makeup junkie you would probably expect me to be excited to see this ISH Lip Statement Palette ($42) in the box, but I honestly could probably take or leave it. I’ve never been drawn towards lip palettes, mostly because I find the idea of throwing one in your purse to touch up on-the-go to be a bit cumbersome. I could see them being fantastic for a makeup artist kit, but not as practical for my personal collection.
That being said, sometimes its nice to receive a product you would never go out and purchase with your own money from a subscription box. I wouldn’t want to risk spending over $40 on a lip palette knowing that I might not get a lot of use out of it. But now that I have one I’m inclined to at least experiment and see what I think. ISH is not a brand that I know a lot about, so I’ve got no real bias one way or the other as to how good their products actually are. From what I can tell the quality of the packaging of the palette itself feels like something worth $40. The plastic is really sturdy, and you get a big, beautiful mirror to work with.
As for the lipsticks themselves, they do seem very pigmented and smooth, but are also a little oily. While I feel like I can get a precise line with the included lip brush, I also feel like this is the kind of product that will wander or bleed very easily outside the lip line. I’ll have to play around with it more, but I think this is the kind of product that would play best with a lip liner.
Then we’ve got our second choice item. We had the pick of a pair of tassel earrings, or this Maya Brenner Designs LOVE Bracelet ($65). Tassels aren’t really my personal taste, so again this was a pretty easy choice for me. We also got to select the metal tone (gold, silver, or rose gold), which I really appreciated since I have a strong preference for gold or rose gold over silver.
This is a really cute and dainty bracelet that I think I’ll be more inclined to rock as the weather warms up and my wardrobe becomes a little more flowy and lightweight. That being said, I think the price on this bracelet is outrageous. If this was actual gold or even gold plated I would maybe be able to understand it more. But $65 for something that is essentially stainless steel seems ridiculous to me. I feel like my Lauren Conrad jewelry from Kohls is very comparable for a fraction of the price. Heck, even my Givenchy wedding jewelry was less expensive than this.
Long story short, will I wear this? Of course. But I could never imagine going out and buying this kind of jewelry full price.
Next up is an unexpected favorite item from the box. I already own a few sleep masks and don’t use them with any kind of regularity, so at first this Free People x Understated Leather Starry Eyed Travel Eye Mask ($40) seemed like kind of a waste. But then I had a genius revelation. This vegan leather eye mask has a removable gel insert that you can pop into the fridge. Knowing my history of headaches, I realized that this will probably be a migrane lifesaver. Normally I get really bad light and sound sensitivity with my headaches, and end up locking myself in a dark room with an ice pack whenever I’m feeling one coming on. This would not only help me with my light sensitivity no matter where I’m at or what time of day it is, but it would also provide that extra cooling relief. Quality-wise it does feel incredibly well made and is undeniably adorable. I don’t think I would pay $40 to buy this from Free People, but I’m excited to own it nevertheless.

And then finally, we received one of three different Rachel Pally Reversible Clutches ($60). I actually probably would have preferred the orange one (as red-orange is one of my favorite lipstick shades to rock), but the one I got is probably more versatile. The reversible design is handy, as it gives you a lot more flexibility with outfit pairing, and the floral motif is right up my alley. Quality-wise the actual construction of the bag feels great. The plain side is a very soft faux leather, and the printed side is a coated canvas material. The zipper doesn’t tug or get stuck (a personal pet peeve of mine), and you have a nice pocket on the inside to keep things a little more organized. It also comes with a dust jacket, which is SO handy to keep it looking its best in between uses. But again, $60 seems like a lot for what this is. I feel like I could find something very similar from Target for a fraction of the price.

With all that being said, there’s one question left to be answered. Is FabFitFun actually worth the money? My friend Steffanie from Brighter Darling does something genius with her Boxycharm reviews that I think would be super helpful in this instance. In addition to looking at the actual retail price of each item, she also includes the “Steffanie Price” or what she would actually value each product in the box at. So Steffanie, this idea is entirely credited to you.

Rachel Pally Reversible Clutch 
Retail Value: $60 – What I Would Pay: $25
While this clutch is cute and doesn’t feel cheap, I could imagine finding something of similar quality at Kohls or Target for a fraction of the price.

Physique 57 Massage Roller
Retail Value: $20 – What I Would Pay: $15
I think this is actually one of the more reasonably priced items in the box. It’s not insanely high quality, but it does the job its designed to do.

Murad Skin Perfecting Lotion
Retail Value: $40 – What I Would Pay: $24
While this is a really nice lotion, I think Murad and many other high end brands are generally overpriced. I’m sure I could find something of similar quality for under $30.

Anderson Lilley Sunset Collection Candle
Retail Value: $45 – What I Would Pay: $27
There is no way I would pay over $40 for this candle. It doesn’t have the name recognition of Diptique, so why would I pay Diptique prices?

ISH Lip Statement Palette
Retail Value: $42 – What I Would Pay: $25
The overall quality of this palette is decent, but it isn’t anything revolutionary or mind blowing. I see this more fairly priced around the $25 mark.

Dermelect Cosmeceuticals Makeover Concealing Ridge Filler
Retail Value: $18 – What I Would Pay: $9
Even if it’s decent, so are a lot of drugstore nail products. At best I would price this around your typical Essie polish or nail treatment.

Free People x Understated Leather Starry Eyed Travel Eye Mask
Retail Value: $40 – What I Would Pay: $18
Yes this is super cute, and maybe a step up in quality from any other eye mask I’ve seen. But I feel like even slashing the price in half is still pretty generous.

KORRES Guava Body Butter
Retail Value: $24 – What I Would Pay: $15
This one is closer to the mark than many of the other items in this box. But it’s still just a body lotion. I don’t think it’s worth more than $20.

Maya Brenner Designs LOVE Bracelet
Retail Value: $65 – What I Would Pay: $12
It’s dainty and adorable, and the quality is decent, however it’s so easily dupable that I wouldn’t pay more than $15 for this.

Total Retail Value: $354
My Total: $170

So even though I would say this box is worth less than half of what it claims to be worth, was it at least worth $50? The cost per item breaks down to about $5.50, and its hard for me to say that I wouldn’t be willing to spend that much on any of these things. Overall I would just take the whole claim of getting over $300 worth of product with a grain of salt. A lot of these items are specially manufactured for FabFitFun and it’s questionable whether or not the same standards of quality are upheld from these high-end brands. Ultimately I would say, don’t let the names and the labels suck you in. Think about how useful or enjoyable the actual products you’d be receiving are and whether or not you actually want to spend your money on them.

All in all I’m pleased with my decision to finally give FabFitFun a try. I’m not going to cancel my subscription before the summer box arrives, although if I feel completely underwhelmed by what I inevitably see in people’s unboxings I may choose to skip out. I suppose that is the nice thing about the format they’ve created. Since you know exactly what you’re going to get you don’t have to worry as much about your money being wasted. Also, if you’re a brand new subscriber to FabFitFun you can save $10 on your first box if you sign up using my referral link! If you really love this Spring Box it may still be available for you to purchase at the discounted price. If not, you can always wait for Summer and see whether or not it suits your fancy.

If you’ve also tried FabFitFun I’d love to hear your thoughts! Have you been generally happy with what you’ve received? Do you think it’s worth the money? Let us know in the comments below!

Which product from this box would you be most excited for?