Was I going to love this lip gloss by Cargo? It looked so pretty, but also very pricey... Was this supposedly life-changing mascara going to last all night and still look amazing in the morning after crashing on a friend's couch? idk!!!! The crisis!!! The indecision! There was no way I could invest in that 1 quality, go-to piece if I didn't know what it was going to be like!!!
SOLUTION? At first I subscribed to both Ipsy and Birchbox... and found Ipsy to be more of the drugstore branded type of product with a free cosmetic bag (which I ended up with so many of that I gave a bunch of them away at Christmas) and Ipsy points for free items were hard to get AND they could only be used on specific items that were often not available as the supply had run out.
Birchbox on the other hand, includes brands like the afore mentioned Benefit, Smashbox, Mirenesse (whose curling mascara is now my ONE AND ONLY;) the Balm, Coola, Atlier scents (pricey, but they have a great deal on a two pack and I love love love both and never would have known had it not been in my box!) Cargo, Lord and Berry, Model, as well as a ton of other amazing brands! Eyeko is now my FAVORITE AND ONLY liquid liner and I've purchased it multiple times already with my points!
These pics don't do the boxes justice as these are items I haven't yet explored... they do stack up over the months and honestly, I give a few away if I can't use them. I have dreads, so I give away hair styling products (except for the shampoos and the occasional conditioner for my ends.) I think I've found a couple of scents that my mother absconded with, but my sample pockets in my organizer are FULL of scents that I love!
(I have rosacea, so anything skincare has to be spread out over time... I can't sample back to back or my face my freak out.)
The Dr. Jart is actually a mask I've had before and I'm just saving it for a luxury night where I have 20 minutes all to myself after a long bath to put on some headphones and zone out and then 'wake' up to beautiful skin!
Some favorites I've gotten (most not pictured,) are a couple of the Balm eyeshadows from new color palettes, Hoola bronzing from Benefit (LOVE THIS! and it's big enough for all summer and probably all spring,) the Fat Electrician scent is so different but exciting and invigorating that I get a TON of compliments and people smelling me every chance they get... it's on my purchase list! Brow Pow by Benefit is amazing and that's just the little folder it came in... also on my purchase list.
These are the ones I've stacked up and haven't been immediately used after six months. The Hoola I pulled out of my collection just for the pic. :) It's going back... lol! As is a few others.
So there is great quality in these samples and I've even given a few as little gift extras if it's a product I've already purchased, owned, or a color that just isn't me.
(And just so you know, my friend LOVED her new Cargo lip gloss. I hate it because for me, it's too sticky, but somehow, she makes it work.)
THE POINTS: Basically, you can get 50 points per box (every month!) just by going in and saying whether you liked/hated 5 of your samples via multiple choice questions and such.
These stack up fast and count as cash in the store so you can get freebies/use codes and coupons/promos AND use your points to pay for product and shipping.
100 points='s $10 and like I said, they stack up FAST. And if you buy anything without using points, you get 1 point per $ (I think I may have purchased about $50 without points so far...tax returns...lol)
When I did the math, you basically get 1/2 the cost of your box back in store credit toward full-size products, which is awesome because you will find things you love:)
A week ago, I used 200 points to pay for a couple of Tony Moly Korean make-up pcs which I am loving and aren't they SO FREAKING CUTE?
The panda is a cool under-eye stick which helps moisturize dry under-eye areas which helps tighten and smooth wrinkles and the various ingredients help with under eye circles and bagginess!
The little pink bunny is the BEST chapstick/lip gloss (that really isn't shiny, sticky or that tinted) in strawberry scent. I love them both and they sit on my counter looking all pretty and cute! And Korean make-up is all the rage right now for a reason. It works and is presented in amazing packaging (obviously!) I can think of a million people who would love these as gifts and they aren't too pricey... unfortunately, I'll be keeping them for myself;) (Unfortunately for everyone else;) LOL!
You also get points for referring friends... so please use my link and help me out? Karma comes back around! :) And feel free to message me if there's something that I can help you out with on referrals!
So yeah! If you've been wondering about this whole Birchbox thing, there it is!