March 5, 2013

Musings of the Day: Do You Dig Beauty Boxes?

Beauty Boxes

I recently had a reader e-mail and ask me a really great question (Thanks Crotchfairy!). She wanted to know what I thought of Beauty Boxes.

You know like Birchbox, Blissmo, Glossybox, etc…

I used to be a very big fan of the Little Black Beauty Box which I’m not even sure is around anymore. It was $19.95 and available, I THINK, every three months. Don’t quote me on the price or when they released it, etc…as I can’t really remember much of the details. Seemed like ages ago.

Moral of the story is…I LOVED that box. It basically introduced you to a slew of different E-tailers. Being a HUGE E-tailer and Etsy h0r I liked getting a little box introducing me to new E-tailers I never tried before. My subscription almost always introduced me to at least three or four new shops. Each box included samples and full size items including Tarts, candles, little makeup products like lip balm, and body creams, mists, etc…I think Little Black Beauty Box is really the original beauty box and kinda what started it all. Because outside of that box I don’t recall anyone else doing something similiar. UNTIL…just recently when suddenly everyone has some sort of beauty box in the works.

Pricing varies but boxes range from $10-$30 and contain both samples and and full size makeup products.

So what exactly do I think of beauty boxes?

I don’t like them.

Don’t kill me.

As I said I really liked the E-tailer one I used to indulge in as it was genuine to me. But right now I feel like these trending beauty boxes are a launch board for brands to either re-promote products OR introduce you to new products in a sample size.


Sorry it’s boring to me. If you’re a beauty junkie chances are you’ve tried MOST of what is in these boxes. I see the Balm loves to include many of their cult favorites in these boxes and chances are you probably OWN every single Balm Blush around and you don’t need a beauty box to reintroduce you to these great blushes right? Samples..samples are everywhere at every counter…any Sephora MA will kindly hand you them in store or you have to have some great SA or MA that you love going to she’ll probably hook you up with the latest and greatest Dior Moisturizer Sample or Bobbi Brown Lipgloss, etc…samples are plentiful. Unlike the UK, we have no shortage of samples to indulge in.

Hey, sometimes you do run into a pissy MA who isn’t so generous and simply doesn’t want to hand over a sample but in most cases you have a very good shot of snagging on counter by asking nicely and expressing interest in a product.

So why pay someone $10 bucks to mail them to you?


When I get samples I tend to toss them in a corner somewhere and never use them. I’ve given my mum bags of ’em to share at her little senior group because I simply don’t find I use them.

These beauty boxes are fun for those who don’t really have a hardcore beauty addiction but those of us that do, well, chances are you’ve already tried MUCH of what is inside these boxes.

Now give me a box that’s $30-$50 and contains maybe two full size upcoming products I’ve never heard about and a few generous samples of products that are launching soon and I’d be quite tempted to indulge.

But throw me a ten dollar box with small samples and perhaps a full size I already own and I’d say keep it.


Beauty Boxes just seem like another way for brands to self promote themselves.

What do you think of beauty boxes?

Do share!

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Carrie

    Not a fan. Aside from not liking samples, it also feels like brands use these boxes to dump old product or shades that aren’t selling. I rather buy 1 product I really want than get a box of four items and maybe be able to use one!

    • the Muse

      yup LOTS of re-promotes, constantly….! It just seems a way for them to re-promote a product and garner new interest. That’s cool if you never tried the brand before but if you’re a beauty addict it is kinda boring. I’d rather take the ten to the drugstore and buy something there rather than a box of samples and maybe one generous size samples…just boring.

  • blueraccoon

    I actually really like mine. I get three–Birchbox, ipsy, and glossybox. Of the three my fave is Glossybox, because I think it has the best products, but I like ipsy’s stuff as well and ipsy uses makeup bags, not a box. (Although the Glossybox boxes are really good quality; I hang on to mine and use them for other stuff.)

    I like getting the packages; it’s like a fun treat to oepn them up and see what’s inside, and there’s usually at least one or two things per box I *love*. Lately I’m not as thrilled with Birchbox and may be canceling it, but my ipsy bag for last month was pretty good, and I just got February’s Glossybox (shipped out late) and it had some stuff in it I want to try, including a gel mask from Missha with snail slime extract in it. I think maybe I’d get better value if I just took the money I spend on the boxes and bought myself one nice item per month, or even per two or three months, but the boxes are fun and I get to try new stuff.

    • the Muse

      what sort of full size products have you gotten and loved blue? curious minds ;D

      • blueraccoon

        Hmm. Glossybox has given me a full-size lipstick, a blush, an Illamasqua nail polish, an Illamasqua medium pencil, an Ellis Faas lip pen (didn’t actually like htis due to weird color, but it was full size)…I’ve also gotten full-size eyeliners, mascara, body lotion (well, a smaller tube but still something you’d buy in store), a couple hair products…I usually get at least one full size item per box regardless of which box it is. Last month my Glossybox gave me a full size Tarte cheek tint, which is a product I’ve not seen before from them, so I don’t know if that’s new or what.

          • littlestelf

            The last Ipsy bag included a full sized Mica gel eyeliner that was a great value. I joined Ipsy pretty recently and so far I’ve been happy with what they’ve sent. I may be a tiny bit biased towards them at the moment, though, since I just won a huge Coastal Scents haul through one of their “Look Challenges” 😉

  • Missy

    Meh. I have shoeboxes full of samples that I never get around to using. I admit I’m tempted sometimes when I see a particularly good box, but I’d rather save the money and buy an item I really want, rather than get a bunch more samples. Only rarely do the samples give you enough product to see if you really like it anyway… or if it will break you out.

  • Caroline

    I get two different boxes each month and really enjoy them. I’m a beauty junkie and thought I had tried everything out there, but these boxes have introduced me to some really great brands (e.g. Swagger Cosmetics, which I had never heard of before getting one of their shadows in my box). It depends on the company, but the samples are often quite large (“deluxe” samples) and I like getting to try some unique products each month. 🙂

  • SF

    I used to be subscribe to one and I canceled it. I just didn’t think it was worth. By saving those 10 dolars I could actually indulf\ge in something that I really wanted.

  • Julia A

    I’m pretty “meh” about beauty boxes too. I could be a perfect consumer for a beauty box, as someone who hasn’t tried out all the brands yet and is open to new products. Plus there could be something in the box which could be a pleasant surprise. But I’d rather invest in something I know I want to get and will use. Plus, there are a lot of brands selling “starter kits” which I would also rather invest in.

  • Angela

    I have to say I don’t really like these beauty boxes. However, I do order 2 monthly box for pets and they are really great values.

  • Janet

    Muse, I know you are too young to remember, but they actually had these back in the seventies! One was called World of Beauty–I can’t remember the name of the other one. They ran ads for them in magazines. I can remember getting Charles of the Ritz, Ultima II, Diane von Furstenburg, and Alexandra de Markoff products in mine (these were all department store lines at the time). There were also a lot of brands I’d never heard of. The products were usually full size and the boxes came every month. It was kind of fun, but I did wind up with a lot of stuff that was the wrong shade or I just didn’t have a use for.

    • the Muse

      janet I don’t remember that but totally made my day telling me now I wanna go and google and see if anyone has pics ;-D too cool!

      • Janet

        Just did a little googling–the other company was called Cosmetique Beauty Club. You can find images of their old ads. I think you got about 7 items per box.

    • Angel

      I remember these Janet!!! OMG, you just took me back. I was a kid and I remember seeing them in my mom’s magazines. My beauty obsession started early. I used to beg my mom to buy them just so I could see her play with all of it. But we were too poor back then so I never got to see one in person. This post just jarred my memory of this awful, ugly purse they used to sell on tv commercials. It had all these snap in compartments… For keys, wallet, makeup bag, it all just snapped right in and kept everything organized. It was hideously ugly but I was fascinated by it LOL! Imma have to go google pic that right now!

      • Angel

        Muse, I found it hahahahahahaha!!! It’s on YouTube, google 1978 Ambassador Handbag Commercial. You will crack up 🙂

        • the Muse

          that is fab. god damn epic Angel LOL! ALL this for $14.95! that is one ugly azz bag ;-D

          • Angel

            Hahahahahahaha!!! I knew you would love it!

          • the Muse

            that was the longest commercial in history…seriously, I WANTED to buy it after her detailed explanation even though it was hideous lol!

  • Kiss & Make-up

    You win some you lose some with these boxes. In Belgium you have the Deauty box. One month I’d feel like a kid on Christmas morning when I saw the contents of the box and the next I’d be like ‘meh’.

  • Michelle

    I used to love them, but I am leaning towards cancelling now as well. I am in Canada so I have Topbox, and BB5 right now. The problem is I cant really try out new skincare or face products because my skin is super sensitive and really breaks out from almost everything. Even the most natural and gentle things seem to break me out the most. I think I should stay away from beauty boxes for now, and next month is my last month with BB5. I can’t seem to walk away from Topbox just yet because they’ve given me awesome products throughout the year, but none that I have actually gone out to purchase. I could have saved hundreds or spent it on other things if I didn’t subscribe to these boxes! I agree, there are a lot of re promoted products.

  • Justine

    I’ve only ever tried Ipsy before, and I’m seriously loving it! They give a lot of full size products or large deluxe samples. No foil packets or perfume samples. Also, a lot of the brands I’ve been completely new to. Other than Ipsy, I would have never subscribed to a monthly box. Glossybox is too expensive for what you get, and Birchbox always is underwhelming to me.

  • Lulubelle

    I love the ones that I currently subscribe to: Birchbox, Eco Emi, Julep, and New Beauty Test Tube. I’ve discovered new products I would have probably not have been exposed to otherwise, such as Orofluido’s Beauty Elixir and Orange Sanguine Cologne Absolue by Atelier. I prefer to shop online, so rarely am I going to be picking up samples in store.

    New Beauty Test Tube does feature full sized products and new releases in addition to deluxe sized samples, so it’s a nice balance to the subscription services that tend to send smaller samples. I’ve also received more than one full sized product from Birchbox, which is always a nice surprise. I also feel like I’ve tried products and colors outside of my comfort zone as a result of the subscription boxes, often with good results!

  • Laura

    I used to get a Black Beauty Box ( too, monthly. But the things were so high end, I’d never repurchase.

    I am on AD for QVC Beauty Tube. Which I like and use lots of stuff or put on EvilBay.

    I like have those “deluxe” samples, not the little kind in a one use sugar packet size. Those deluxe samples are perfectfor me as I never can get through the regular size products without getting bored and wanting to purchase whatever the “new thing” out is.

  • Christy

    I’m far too picky about my makeups and already have too many drawers full of stuff I’m not totally in love with but just can’t seem to throw away. At least I know I’ve gone into buying those ones with eyes wide open…

  • kiwikiwidragon

    I love my beauty boxes. I have birchbox and beauty bar. I’ve gotten full size laura geller, kevin auocin, stila, a debrah lippman nail polish, etc. List goes on and on. Hair ties, head bands, chocolate. I have kept my mom in self tanner for months. I used my birchbox points to get a by terry rose balme, and speaking of by terry, got a fabulous moisturizer, deluxe sample size,but I use it when I really want to feel special. I also look forward to them every month. The gals at birch box are awesome. If I have an issue, they send a new box and give points towards purchase. Love it but I understand its not for everyone.

  • Cj

    The only one I’m currently subbed to is GlamBag, I used to have birchbox but after the 4th straight month of nothing but tiny samples that you get FREE at department stores, I cancelled.

  • Ruth

    I used to get the Julep nail polish box and canceled after a few months. Their products were beautiful and have great quality but I have more polish than I know what to do with. They were all cream colors and a girl (or guy) needs a bit of pizazz to their polish.

  • amy

    Besides, the pre-fabricated samples you get in these boxes is never enough to determine if the product is right for you; I feel you need to try a skincare product for a minimum of a week (preferably at least 2), and a makeup product needs at least 3 applications, as we all experience variables from day to day. Sadly, you’re lucky to get enough product for one application in those little foil packets. I’ve had no trouble getting samples at counters; if the SA gives me a hard time, I explain I’ve heard good things, and if it works, I’ll buy the full size-obviously I’m not just trying to get something for free, since I’m not going to keep coming to a counter every other day for a sample, LOL.

  • Kimmwc03

    I have tried out a few of these and haven’t really liked them. I am subscribed to Birchbox but no longer care for it. I’m planning to cancel my subscription soon. I’d rather just get the free samples I ask for at Sephora. The best thing I ever got from Brichbox was a full-sized Laura Geller baked blush. I haven’t gotten anything else that awesome in about a year. I tried ipsay when it was Myglam bag; even though they’ve improved I do not think it is worth it. I’m too much of a Beauty Junkie.

  • Danielle

    I’m subscribed to Birchbox, but it’s been sort of meh lately. (I wish they would include more samples! I want a box full of samples!) The full-sized Laura Geller baked blushes were the only cool thing, I agree. Also the Jouer eyeshadows are fun. There are also other beauty boxes like “New Beauty Test tube” and Loose Button’s “Luxe Box” but I haven’t tried them yet.

  • Diane Krny

    Hey! I’m old enough to remember those beauty clubs from the seventies and 80s. unfortunately. I used to get World of Beauty and the other one was Cosmetique! And guess what? that one is still around apparently! Still $20 a pop. Found their website here:

    I belonged for about 3 years back in the early 80s…but I didn’t use much makeup then and never used much of what I got…but I had fun picking through it. Now..I’m too busy ordering off QVC and Sephora and reading blogs like this and racing to my drugstore or Ulta’s to buy the latest thing Muse reviews! LOL

  • Denise

    I love these boxes! Right now I get 3—GlossyBox, PopSugar and New Beauty’s Beauty Tube. All three have both full size items and samples. The PopSugar box also has some non-beauty items which, so far, have been great!

  • Kate

    Argh, I have a love heate relationship with Birchbox (the one beauty box I knew about). I signed up for the samples–I just don’t shop online at Sephora enough to get samples and it seems like right now all they have to offer are perfume samples I don’t need. But then, I received three boxes and hated them! I used maybe one sample from each one–ironically the perfume sample that I stashed at my boyfriends place, and the rest are sitting in a drawer.

    But then I have a compulsion to sign up again because 1) I love mail and 2) I might get a sample I would like. Ugh I should just give up and stick to drug store beauty stuff.

  • Alanna

    I tried birchbox for about 6 months- I got some okay stuff from them, but they also seemed to completely disregard my preferences in terms of sample selection. I also got sick of paying $10 for 5 TINY samples and like a gross health bar. I’d rather just hustle up the SA at my sephora and save my money for asian beauty samples on ebay.

      • Alanna

        I don’t KNOW!! It’s like if I wanna try one I’ll pay $1 at the grocery you know?

  • Shelby

    I subscribed to topbox (Canada) and my sister is subbed to Ipsy, I get to try out whatever she gets.

    I used to have glossybox (canada) but they are REALLY terrible compared to other countries versions, 90% of the stuff we got was from the drugstore and the rest was usually from the same companies all the time, no variety.

    I like topbox because they’re more high end, last month we got a Benefit box, all Benefit stuff which was pretty great. I’m pretty satisfied with my collection as it is so I don’t buy a ton of stuff anymore, so with that one beauty box I get to control my spending and just try out a few new things every month.

  • JoElla

    I haven’t signed up for any beauty boxes, but I am quite curious about GlossyBox and Ipsy (I think that is the name). Birchbox has always seem to be hit or miss. And if I went the test tube route, I would opt for the New Beauty Test Tube and not QVC’s version.

  • Tammie

    I’m doing ipsy right now because they do more cosmetics…so far nothing has wowed me but I figure it’s a little surprise treat every month. If I don’t like it after a few months I’ll cancel though.

  • MeggieBeth

    My sister got me a six month subscription to Birchbox for my birthday this year. It’s fun to get them (especially since I’m not paying) and see what I got, but I can already tell about a third are things I won’t be too interested in. So far I’ve fallen in love with a detangling spray for my very long curly hair that actually fits into my criteria of sulfate, paraben, and silicone-free. That was a lovely surprise. Perfumes I could take or leave and they usually sit in a box on my dresser, though it’s fun to have a variety I don’t often buy full size perfumes, and like others, I’m acne prone so skin care I will be very wary of. Otherwise I’ll stay hopeful, but probably won’t continue to pay once the six months are up.

  • Sara

    I’ve been getting the Ipsy Glambag for the last 2 months and I’m a fan. I really love the Mica Beauty full size black gel eyeliner I got last month and the deluxe sample of the Pixi Flawless and Poreless primer. I looked into Birchbox and it didn’t seem to impress me. For $10, I like trying new types of products. I had never used gel eyeliner or primer before my Ipsy bag and now I’m a huge fan of both!

  • Audrey C.

    I totes agree! The only box I’ve indulged in so far is the Julep Maven box and that’s only because I KNOW what I’ll be getting (nail polish or hand and nail treatments). The price is right, too, at $20 for three full size products and a “surprise” (which has been a lip balm for me both times so far, but hey, always need lip balm!).
    Signed up for the ipsy waitlist but I’m not holding my breath!

  • Montree

    I think beauty boxes are a waste of money. Basically the companies are charging customers for samples or products that are near expiring. I’d rather save my money and buy a full size product that I can return if not satisfied.

  • Nat

    (I’m in Canada, BTW)

    Glymm – quit membership; the products were from companies I had never heard of, could not buy locally, and were very expensive online

    Topbox – quit membership; the amount of product vs cost was not good enough, and I already owned most things they sent me

    Glossybox – monthly, still get and love!

    Luxebox/Loose Button – quarterly, still get and love!

    Even though I sometimes only want half of what is in the box, I love sharing the rest with my best friend and with my mother-in-law, and they like getting the free goodies once a month, lol. I also love getting a neat little package in the mail full of surprises, makes me feel like a little girl! 😀

  • Devin

    I generally agree with all of you that the boxes are mostly you paying for things that *should* be free. I think the one thing worth mentioning is that Birchbox gives you points back so you can purchase full-size items. So you end up paying something around $3.50 per monthly box of samples which is really not bad considering it’s much less than Sephora’s shipping price for items/samples.

    I think Muse is just super awesome so the Sephora ladies are nice and generous with you, but I’ve had a lot of bad experiences and seen the same kind of reviews on MUA. No matter what I buy (super expensive or not) I get the same cold looks and “oh we don’t have any samples right now” kind of lines.

  • Phyrra

    We’re in agreement. Most of the beauty boxes I’ve received have been disappointing.

  • Mahsa

    I only get the uk Birchbox which I’m probably cancelling in April – but I actually use my samples more than my full size products because I just love seeing how different products are xxxx

  • Katie T.

    I have been an Ipsy subscriber for 2 months, and I love it. It’s only $10 a month, and such a great value for stuff I love trying. I wanted to get Birchbox, but I’ve been reading increasingly negative reviews. Even if I don’t l ike anything in my Ipsy box, it’s only $10, which is barely the price of a drugstore item these days, so I don’t feel guilty especially when I get to try out 3-4 items. And last month’s box came with Josie Mara Argan Oil. ARGAN OIL!!!!!

  • Eli

    The first Bulgariant box is alreday shipped – Prettybox 🙂 I haven’t tried others but I’m sooo curious to see what’s inside 🙂 But you’re right in saying that an “insider’s peek” approach to beauty boxes is best – I don’t want to have duplicates of things I already own in my box 🙂

  • JennyWhiskey

    Hey there! I’m a long time lurker finally deciding to chime in….

    I Subscribe to Glossybox, Birchbox, Ipsy,Julep Maven and just signed up for Lipstick Factory Inc. I consider myself a crazy makeup/beauty bag lady with all the product hoarding i do!

    Thus far, I’m really happy with what i’ve gotten. There’s always a few duds, but I’m the type of person who doesn’t mind sharing or repurposing items so they work for me. I got the Small sized Josie Maran Argan Oil in January in my Ipsy bag and oh my god I am addicted. I love the full sized Vincent longo lipstick from Glossybox January, and i love Julep Nailpolishes so so much. I’ve never been disappointed with any of their products (including the body/hand/foot stuff) I’m considering canceling Julep ONLY because i have a ton of Polish now. I just got my first Birchbox last month and was meh about it. I Got a Balm highlighter which i LOVE and never tried before, but everything else was just ok. I’m giving it 2 more months to see what i think.

    Here’s what i Think overall….

    It’s fun to try them out for a while and get a pretty package in the mail full of surprises(i admit Ive got a fetish for getting things in the mail). But after a few months, You start to accumulate a lot of stuff you may already have (hello mini tubes of black mascara) and decide it’s time to cancel some.

    I’m at the point where i will probably get a month or two more of them and call it quits. But i really enjoyed them!

  • Trish

    I used to subscribe to Birchbox, but when the year’s subscription was up that was it! It seemed like every month I always got the “worst” box. One month people were getting beauty blenders and I ended up with little foil packs. My biggest complaint was that not all the boxes were of the same value. Also, some of the samples were just outrageous. One month I got stick on lipstick…wtf.

    I’m currently doing Julep Maven..sort of . I signed up for the first box which wasn’t my favorite because the colors weren’t flattering for my skin tone. I figured it would be ok since for the rest of the months I could choose. So far I’ve just been skipping the boxes since they’ve been for colors I’m not very interested in.

    Meh. Boxes are overrated. I’d rather order something online and have it delivered. I just think Birchbox is kind of a scam. They always treated me poorly with missing products and no customer service skills at all.

  • Winni

    I get Birchbox, ipsy and Popsugar. My Fav is popsugar since it is a variety of full sized items, only one of which is beauty. Last month I got a thing and a super soft shower coverup towel thingy, among other things. I’m not too impressed w Birchbox lately-gonna give them one more month to wow me. But I’m cutting expenses and will probably cut B and ipsy and keep popsugar. We will see. I also didn’t get my ipsy bag last month (shipping issue) and still haven’t been refunded my $10 yet.

  • Rebecca

    i get the Julep maven box. What I like about it is I can skip a month anytime, and i can see what I’m getting first before deciding. Plus, I get points for every box, and I can use the points for polishes or beauty items

  • Majick

    I used to get the New Beauty Tube from QVC but it had the same products and brands every freaking month. Cancelled.

    I don’t have experience with any others (my friend gets Glossy BOx and likes it but gave me some stuff because she got duplicates) but I tend to agree that the companies are putting older product in them.

    I’m trying to get better about not taking something just because it’s free. I have such an overabundance of stuff from freebies.

    I’ve never even heard of some of these companies. LOL

  • Laura S.

    I have been subscribed to Birchbox for about 18mos. and I love it. I feel like I always get a good mix of beauty, skin, & hair products & the value always exceeds $10 (best box had 3 full size products w/ value of $35). At least for me, the products are mostly geared towards my preferences in the beauty quiz, as far as skin tone, hair texture, & interests. Though I have received some products that I had no use for, tanners/bronzers & products w/ aloe vera (allergy), they have been a small percentage (less than 10%), and I save those to add to gifts for my sisters/nieces. I have receieved several full size or purchasable travel size products, including Essie, Color Club, & Zoya polishes, Tarte Lip Surgence, ModelCo lip gloss, Ojon Thickening spray, Laura Gellar Spackle, Oscar Blandi Jasmine Protein Mist, Stila Smudge Stick, Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant, Beauty Blender, Stila One Step Bronze, Eyeko Liquid Liner, Twistbands, Boscia Cleansing Gel, Stila Liquid Luminizer, etc. as well as some of the usual one-use foil packs and deluxe samples similar to Sephora’s 100 pt items.

  • Laura S.

    I have been subscribed to Birchbox for about 18mos. and I love it. I feel like I always get a good mix of beauty, skin, & hair products & the value always exceeds $10 (best box had 3 full size products w/ value of $35). At least for me, the products are mostly geared towards my preferences in the beauty quiz, as far as skin tone, hair texture, & interests. Though I have received some products that I had no use for, tanners/bronzers & products w/ aloe vera (allergy), they have been a small percentage (less than 10%), and I save those to add to gifts for my sisters/nieces. I have receieved several full size or purchasable travel size products, including Essie, Color Club, & Zoya polishes, Tarte Lip Surgence, ModelCo lip gloss, Ojon Thickening spray, Laura Gellar Spackle, Oscar Blandi Jasmine Protein Mist, Stila Smudge Stick, Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant, Beauty Blender, Stila One Step Bronze, Eyeko Liquid Liner, Twistbands, Boscia Cleansing Gel, Stila Liquid Luminizer, etc. as well as some of the usual one-use foil packs and deluxe samples similar to Sephora’s 100 pt items. Also, due to getting points for feedback, I’ve also gotten about $100 worth of products from their shop.

  • Tiffany Martin

    I LOVE EM.

    I live in a state with NO SEPHORA, NO ULTA, no nothing.

    Getting samples is impossible! So for me, it’s way easier than throwing down money only to get burned. I am subscriber to Beauty Army and Julep, and the main reason is they allow you to SKIP your boxes, and you get to see UPFRONT what you’re getting. Seems more fair to me that way.

    • Maggie

      I’m kind of in the same boat as you–I also live in a remote area nowhere near any department stores, sephora, ulta, etc. (it’s gorgeous here though with decent temperatures year-round so no complaints really). I like the idea of beauty boxes especially if they let you see what’s in them upfront but not something like birchbox. I’ve got enough untouched samples from sephora and all the ordering I do as it is.

      • Tiffany Martin

        Yeah I’m hearing that (: I like knowing what I’m getting upfront too. Both services I use let me choose to some degree, which helps as well!

  • Irene

    I’ve always felt these boxes are kind of a waste of money, but then again I have a super small budget for make-up purchases. I’ve sadly never been offered any samples in NYC yet, in fact I once asked for one (knowing that they did have samples of the product) and they refused! Reading what you say, I’ve probably just been unlucky 🙁

  • AmandaM

    I get 4 Beauty Boxes now: BirchBox, GlossyBox, ipsy (all of these are monthly) & the QVC Test Tube (quarterly). Out of the 4 my favorite, and in my opinion the best bang for your buck, is the QVC Test Tube. I am planning on letting my subscriptions to Birchbox and Glossybox expire, but I’m going to give ipsy a bit more time.

  • Bethany

    I have been getting an Ipsy bag for over a year. I almost cancelled last summer, but they have gotten much better. I live almost an hour away from the nearest mall/ Ulta/ Sephora and I have a small beauty budget. (I am a school teacher). I spend a lot of time researching my purchases. The bag gives me a chance to sample products that I wouldn’t spend money for a full-size product just to try. I have been introduced to smaller companies that I would have never tried and found some products that I ended up very surprised that I liked. I also love the surprise each month. It is like getting a present to myself in the mail each month.

  • Heather

    Inm in Australia, I’ve signed up to two monthly boxes for $14.95 each. I often get more than one full size product in each box. I like to trial products before I buy full size and this is a cheap way to do it rather than splurge on a full sized product and dislike it. The last box I got had 4 full sized products so it’s a good deal. 🙂

  • Heather

    I hate sachet samples though and don’t use them much. I prefer deluxe sized samples.

  • Fantastic

    I agree. I could never understand paying for samples..
    I used to order a box years ago–Yellow Box Beauty. They were maybe $30ish/mo, and had amazing boxes. They’d feature a box full of one lesser known line per month..some months it was a whole brush set, the next it would be something like Aussie brand Lucy B..I know their site is still ump but I don’t believe they’re still doing business.

  • Jacks

    I think these boxes are a fun little treat. Makeup is such fun anyway, and it is a blast getting new products to try each month. I’ve discovered many new faves and some of the samples are just so darn cute!

  • Tammy

    Lottery (hope to get a deluxe/actual size) + Surprise (random new things) + Pretty Boxes or Bags that housed the samples + Branding (how cute the beauty box name/theme).

    Will this trend fade?

  • Wndblws

    I’m not quite a hard core about collecting beauty products although my family has threatened to call hoarders on my make up collection. Seriously though, I do get a lot of full sized products from ipsy and also many products that I wouldn’t have bought for myself that I ended up loving. I let my Birchbox subscription lapse because I received such small samples (would like to be able to use product at least twice) and seemed to get shampoo and face wash every month after a year there was no more anticipation knowing I would get the same type of products every month.mSo I guess subscription boxes can be good if they suit the subscriber.

  • Jeanine McAuliffe

    I’m uber excited for this..I can never get to sephora! I was really big into sub boxes for awhile which lead to being big into the online trading community but a year and a half in I realized I was spending more money shipping and I could take that money and just buy the one or two products I really wanted. I still take much pleasure in making up makeup boxes and packages and sending to ladies in the trading group community but I don’t do it near as much as I used to. #BrokeGirlProblems