Pammy Blogs Beauty: August 2012: "Back to School" Birchbox!!! (Box Opening)

Friday, August 17, 2012

August 2012: "Back to School" Birchbox!!! (Box Opening)

It is "Back-to-School" time with Birchbox!

There is a certain thrill to this time of year. The excitement of a new beginning and a change in the mark of time. As a new stay-at-home Mom, this is a first for me: The first time NOT going back to school in decades! That is right, I went straight from high school to college, and then college to grad school, then grad school to my first job as a Speech Therapist at a School. While not personally going "back to school", I still feel that certain "excitement" for this time of year! So, I think that this "Back-to-School Birchbox" theme is cute and timely.

What is the Scoop with Birchbox?
Many of you readers know the drill with how Birchbox works. If you do, just skip over this next section. If you are not familiar with Birchbox, please read on! :) Birchbox continues to be one of my very favorite beauty subscriptions!!! You can't beat the price, and the samples are always great!
Birchbox is a monthly beauty sample subscription service. For $10 per month, you get a beautifully wrapped box full of 4-5 deluxe size (and the occasional full sized) luxury or boutique beauty products. It is a great way to discover new beauty brands and get out of a makeup/skincare/haircare rut! Plus, it feels as if you are unwrapping a little present! It is my monthly gift to myself and I just love it! I have subscribed for over a year and have just been so happy with the service and the items I have gotten in the boxes. Beyond the boxes being a great value, they are fun! I honestly have found some great new brands and some new favorite products through my Birchbox sample subscription. 

Curious what has been in some of my previous Birchboxes? Be sure to check out these posts: Birchbox Introduction PostJan 2011 BirchboxFeb 2011 BirchboxMarch 2011 BirchboxApril 2011 BirchboxMay 2011 BirchboxJune 2011 BirchboxJuly 2011 BirchboxAugust 2011 BirchboxSept 2011 Birchbox,  Oct 2011 BirchboxNov 2011 Birchbox, December 2011 Birchbox, January 2012 Birchbox, February 2012 Birchbox, and the March 2012 Teen Vogue Birchbox, April 2012 Birchbox Box Opening, May 2012 Gossip Girl Birchbox Box opening, June 2012 Birchbox, and July 2012 Birchbox. 
What is in the April 2012 Birchbox??? Keep reading to find out!

August 2012 "Back-to-School" Birchbox:
This is such a great time of year! It is late summer, the weather is beautiful, and Fall is just around the corner!

"Pencils of Promise": Shop at Birchbox and Birchbox Gives!
In honor of the August box's Beauty School theme, Birchbox has teamed up with Pencils of Promise, a non-profit dedicated to making quality education available to communities in need. This month, we’re donating 15% of the proceeds from all sales in the Birchbox Shop to the organization, with the goal of building a school in Guatemala*.

Instead of Birchbox's usual postcard, they included a "Beauty 101" folded pamphlet. It is a tips sheet with tips on beauty tools, reading product labels, getting a better shave, makeup quick fixes, and skincare. Cute! I love reading tips like these. How fun! On the back of the folded card is the "supply list" which is your list of samples.

Inside the Box:
  • Juicy Couture | Viva la Juicy La Fleur ($70.00 for 2.5 oz, sample size: mini vial with spray): OMG, I have sooooo many sample perfume vials on hand from my various beauty sample subscriptions. I honestly do not need any more of these! However, I really adore this scent and I am obsessed with perfume in general lately. So, I am happy to have it! I just wish that the sample was a bit larger. I really, really like this scent! The scent has the fruity top notes (mandarin and berries) of the origional Viva la Juicy combined with honeysuckle, gardenia, and jasmine. Mmm!!!  
  • Stila | stay all day 10-in-1 HD beauty balm, foundation, and concealer ($38-$44.00 for 1 oz full size, sample size: foil packet on a card): I am really surprised that this foil packet/card is considered one of 4-5 "deluxe sized" samples? I think this would be better suited as an extra. Birchbox is normally really very generous with their samples. So, I am a bit surprised. I would have loved a larger sample. Oh well! These multi-tasking favorites are your cheat sheet to flawless skin. 
  • whish | Shave Cream ($20.00 for full sized, sample size: I don't see it listed...but am guessing 1 oz?): Oh goody! I have always wanted to try something from this brand. This is a very generous sized sample. This product smells so good: like apples! It is nice and creamy. It will be a treat to use! The organic shea butter in this foam-free shaving cream softens your skin as you shave. 
  • Yu-Be | Moisturizing Skin Cream ($16.00 for full sized, sample size .1 oz): I love this stuff. I actually have a full-sized tube already and am planning on reviewing it soon! It is my newest go-to treatment for softening my feet (love using it overnight with cotton socks...but with this summer heat, it is too hot for socks at night, lol!). I recommend it to anyone with dry/calloused feet! It is a super rich balm-like cream. I am happy to have a sample size of this for travel. This will go right in my travel product kit for my next weekend getaway! This best selling Japanese cream hydrates chapped lips, rough heels, and cracked hands.
  • Birchbox "Finds": Schick Hydro Silk Razor (Full size!!! Price $9.99): This Birchbox "finds" category is new! It looks as if the Birchbox finds are value products that Birchbox recommends. Personally, I love both drugstore and high-end products. So, I like that they are including drugstore finds. I am a huge fan of Schick Razors! I love the Hydro Silk!!! Actually, I was just about out of refills for the one I already have it my shower. So, good timing! Clearly the $9.99 value of this full-sized product pays for the Birchbox itself. This razor contains a long-lasting moisturizing serum in the water-activated strip around the blades. It makes for a very smooth shave!
So that is it! I like that this month had some "coordinating" products: the razor and the shave cream. The "Back-to-School" theme was cute too. Be sure to check out Birchbox's online magazine too! The August issue is great with articles, videos, how-tos, and of course the Birchbox blog! No, this was not my favorite Birchbox ever; but, I am still happy with Birchbox as a whole. While I would prefer that the samples be more "luxury" than say...a razor, I am still happy because it is an item that I needed and will use. I am very surprised that the Stila foundation card counted as a "deluxe sample"...but, that is the first time that Birchbox has done that in one of my boxes. As with all beauty subscriptions, I look at the quality of boxes over time. Birchbox has been consistently good. So, while this particular box is not one of my faves, I am still pleased with my subscription.

As a former educator, I am thrilled that Birchbox is donating proceeds from this month's sales to "Pencils of Promise"! Donating towards a child's education is a a gift that truly keeps giving (for a lifetime!).

I pay for my Birchbox
subscription. I can earn 
points towards discounts 
with referral link (all links
in this post are referral links)


Phyrra said...

I have to admit, I think it's incredibly lame when a beauty box puts shaving cream and razors into them.

saraleh82 said...

Your August Birchbox was so much better than mine. I received stuff that I have no use for. The only thing I would use was the lip/cheek tint that I received.

MarciaF said...

My box is terrible. I can't believe the difference in our boxes. I got the razor and other than that terrible small samples, nothing I'd use. It's disappointing to see nicer boxes and get one that has nothing I'd even consider using.

Unknown said...

@Phyrra-Good point! The box loses a bit of its luxury flair when it includes a razor. I guess that is why they listed it as an "extra" or "Birchbox find" I think the main reason that I liked the inclusion of the razor is that I was able to cross "razor" off my grocery list for this week. But, otherwise, yes, I totally see your point. I did tell them in the feedback that I preferred luxury items over drugstore stuff.

@Saraleh82-That is frustrating to see other boxes that are "better". For what it is worth, while I am satisfied...this is not my fav Birchbox ever.

@Marcia-Oh, that stinks! I hope next month's box is better for you. It goes in phases. :)

Suselew said...

My son and his fiancé bought me a 6 month subscription to it for my birthday and I knew from reading reviews how lame it would be. Of course, I didn't let on. As expected, it was pathetic. It was like getting 5 Sephora free samples of crap I would never pick up. What a rip off! I feel badly they spent their hard-earned money on it. When my son saw the contents he said, "That's it?",made a face and walked out disappointed.

Unknown said...

@Suselew-Wow, sorry you are so dissapointed. Sounds like you should probably cancel.

Meagan said...

I am definitely glad I don't get birchbox anymore. I hated getting stuff in the box that you can otherwise get for free.

Brook said...

I got exactly the same box as you and it is what made me cancel. I thought it was an incredibly lame box (the Stila card sent me over the edge) but I'm glad you liked your box.

Unknown said...

@Meagan-I do like seeing deluxe sized samples better. Some samples in this box were quite small (stila card!). But, what keeps me coming back is looking at the boxes over time and realizing I have been pleased on a whole. Also, love the packaging presentation of the box like a "gift".

@Brooke-I hear ya, sounds like it was time for you to cancel then. This is the first time that I had a sample like the Stila card in my box. If this happens consistently, then I will not be pleased. But, this was the first time I got such a small sample in my box. Month-to-month, my boxes have been very good. So, while this box was not my favorite ever, I am still happy with Birchbox as a whole.

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