Befine Gentle Cleanser – This was a nice sized little sample, so I was pretty excited to try it knowing I could get several uses from it. Also, since it was labeled as gentle I thought I might be able to use it with my Clarisonic. (Gritty, exfoliating cleansers are not recommended for that- for obvious reasons. And if the reason isn’t obvious to you, just imagine little exfoliating beads or shells or nuts or whatever being sonically ground into your skin. Probably not the best idea, eh?) I expected this cleanser to have a nice consistency similar to a light lotion, and boy was I wrong. This is by far the most watery cleanser I have ever tried. It basically does look like plain water. I think that considering this, different packaging should have been chosen for this one, luckily mine did not leak. It’s supposed to foam, but I had to lather it up in my hands before using it, and even then there was barely any foam at all. Either the bottle or the card should have said ‘lightly foaming cleanser’, or maybe it did and I just overlooked it. It’s a nice enough cleanser.. gentle and paraben free. I would probably enjoy this more if it was in a little pump of some kind. Every time I open it I feel like I’m going to spill half of it down the sink. If you’re looking for something gentle, this is a nice choice. I will continue to use my sample occasionally, but was not impressed with it enough to purchase a full size.
Eboost Orange Natural Energy Booster – I’ll be honest here, I was not at all happy about this product. I appreciate the fact that Birchbox wants to cover a broad range of products, I am just not loving the way they have been doing it. Maybe I’m too much of a germaphobe, or maybe just incredibly picky about my food and drinks, but either way I was not interested in trying this stuff. I understand the concept of adding an energy powder in with the samples around the time that people were so busy with the holidays, but it just wasn’t my thing. I have not tried it, and I don’t really plan to. I’ll probably give it away if anyone I know wants it. Also, the full size is $28 for a 20 packets, so that’s $1.40 per packet which is something to keep in mind.
Harvey Prince Yogini – Generally I am really unimpressed with getting perfume samples in my Birchbox. I will say that this one gets bonus points for being a bit larger than the usual vials, and also having a spray top rather than a stopper. The scent doesn’t really suit me, though. It’s not bad, and not really overwhelming. There’s something a bit warm about it, so I would say it kind of fits the season. It’s described as having a clean scent, but I don’t find that to be very accurate. It’s almost a little spicy, but not in an overpowering way. It includes notes of sandalwood, grapefruit, Egyptian myrrh, golden amber, incense, and star jasmine. It’s a decent fragrance that I will probably wear from time to time, even if it isn’t really my ideal. I think the name is pretty strange too, if we’re being blunt. 😉
Jouer Moisturizing Lip Gloss – I’m pretty sure everyone got this, in “Birchbox Pink”. The sample is really tiny, but it’s cute and would work out well if you had a particularly small evening bag and needed to bring a gloss along. The color looks pretty from the outside, and also pretty intimidating. I didn’t expect this to be wearable at all, especially with my somewhat Casper-like winter complexion. Happily, it’s not as scary as it looks. You can build up the coverage, and a light coat works out pretty nicely without being shocking. I don’t find this gloss to be sticky at all, it lasts a good while, and my lips feel great after wearing it. If I were to buy the full size I might try another shade, but this pink would be particularly nice for spring. (Not that I am implying this tiny sample will last you that long though). The main drawback on this is that according to the website, this does contain parabens, which I checked on because the last Jouer lip product did, so keep that in mind.
L’Oreal Professionnel Mythic Oil – (Fancier because it’s in French, ya’ll. Or one word of it is. What’s that about?) I’ve been holding out hope for a while now that I would get the Orofluido hair oil in a Birchbox, because it’s said to be very nice and smell amazing. So, I was a little disappointed that when I did get a hair oil, it was from L’Oreal. Nevertheless, Mythic is fun to say and it’s still a hair oil, so I had high hopes for it. The packaging is like a perfume sample, a little card with a vial inside, and the vial has a little plastic stopper. It’s a small sample, but since you only need a few drops at a time it should last for many uses. This stuff has an odd smell. It’s not unpleasant, but it’s not fantastic either… it’s just odd. It’s not terribly strong though and it starts to fade rather quickly, so it’s not a deal breaker. I like this oil, but I would not say that it’s super effective. It’s nice to tame a few flyaways and help relieve the haystack-like dryness that hair sometimes takes on in the winter, but I didn’t see a huge improvement in my hair compared to a hair product I could get at the drugstore. Also, even when using this sparingly, it’s very easy to get too much and make your just-washed hair look greasy. Maybe that’s the chance you always take with hair oil, but if you have very fine or oily hair, this might not be the right product for you.
Showstoppers Designer Fashion Tape – This is definitely the kind of extras that I prefer to get in the box. It’s still beauty related, it’s useful, and it goes well with the theme since many women would be attending holiday parties that required a little dressing up. I’ll admit I have not used these yet, there are only two in the package and I haven’t had a need for them. I didn’t want to waste them just to be able to say, “why yes, it’s dress tape… it’s sticky.” I wish there had been a few more in the sample. If two strips is a deluxe sample, would a non deluxe sample just be one? Anyway, it was a cool little item that I will be throwing into my purse as one of those little ‘be prepared’ items like bobby pins and safety pins. $10 for a 24 pack isn’t terrible.. unless you think too much about paying $10 for tape. This might be a good little extra to spend some Birchbox points on. I hope we get more items like this, or more things from Showstoppers.
This wasn’t a bad box at all – it had shimmery white tissue paper (pretty!), the card was folded to resemble a holiday card, and they included a code for $20 off a purchase of $75. Overall though, I was expecting a little more from the December box since it was the last box of the year, and the holiday box. Perhaps if I hadn’t been so far along in my shopping and actually used the coupon code, I would’ve felt more satisfied with the December box. That was a great offer, there’s no doubt about that – I was just hoping for something like a full sized item to be included in the box. Anyway, that’s all for this review. Check back soon for the review of my January Birchbox!