December’s Birchbox theme was “Decked Out”, which makes sense given that it’s the holiday season. This month, I was pretty excited to see what was included in my Birchbox, and I thought that everything looked really awesome!
As I may have mentioned in the past, I love The Body Shop. I especially love it when they have sales, because it means that I can buy more amazing things for the same amount of money. In fact, I love their sales so much that I only ever buy from TBS during their sales 😉
In any case, they were having a 40% off sale at the end of November, and I jumped on it, buying 6 products. “But Abigail, there are 7 products in your picture!” you might say. That’s because TBS added a free gift if you spent over $50. The best part is, you were able to select your gift from several options! I chose the Shea Body Butter, which normally costs $20.
For those of you not familiar with sample choice, it’s a program that began last August where Birchbox subscribers have the option to select a sample to be included in next month’s box. Each month 3-4 samples are revealed and the sample you pick will replace one of your traditional 5 samples. This month, Birchbox subscribers have the chance to choose from 3 samples, or select a box curated by a guest editor. This is a comparison of those options based on research I’ve done using other blogs and my own calculations. This month I’ve taken all of my images as screenshots from the official Birchbox video.
First, the three sample options. This year Birchbox seems to be revealing their sample choices along a theme, and this month that theme is hair products.
The first sample comes from one of Birchbox’s favorite brands, Beauty Protector. It’s their Protect & Oil. I’ve received this before, and though it was a perfectly adequate hair oil, the sample vial was a bit unwieldy when it came to dispensing product.
The next sample is Amika’s Bombshell Blowout Spray. In the video, Birchbox curator Rachel says she swears by this product, and it’s got a solid 4 stars on Birchbox.com.
The final option is the It’s A 10 Miracle Leave-in Product. I’ve heard great things about the It’s A 10 brand, and I’m excited to try something from them. This particular product supposedly acts as a defrizzer, shine enhancer, heat protector, and styling creme, and it’s got 4.5 stars and rave reviews on Birchbox.com.
The final option is the Guest Editor box. This month, it’s curated by Beauty Solutions.
The products in this box:
derma e Evenly Radiant Brightening Day Creme SPF 15
Laura Geller Blush ‘n’ Brighten
Dear Clark Volumizing Hair Tonic
Supergoop! Eye Cream
Whish Three Wishes Body Butter – Almond
I haven’t tried any of the products in this box before, but it is quite attractive. In particular, the blush is very tempting! Vicky at Caught in a Daze has a review of the Laura Geller blush here. If any of the other products in this box also call your name, I would definitely go for it!
Bonus: this month, the boxes are supposed to be covered in a variety of snazzy, spring-like patterns!
Look at how excited Rachel is about these boxes!
Although the curated box looks pretty awesome, I currently don’t need any more day cream, eye cream, or body lotion, so I can’t justify it. Instead, I’m going to be choosing the It’s A 10 Miracle Leave-in Product this month, which I’m excited to try!
Which sample(s) are you considering?
If you’re planning on purchasing a Birchbox subscription, please consider using my referral link: https://www.birchbox.com/invite/justabirchbox
This Saturday is Valentine’s Day, which is traditionally a day spent with your partner. However, there are plenty of other great ways to spend it — with friends, on a first date, curled up reading a good book, at a party… My goal today is to bring you looks suitable for any of these situations.
My first look is for attending a party with friends — I focused it around a short lacy dress and bright red accents. The second look is meant as something you could wear to a fancy dinner with someone you’ve been going out with a while — a stunning long dress and classic makeup. Next up, an outfit for a stroll through the woods or hanging out in the park; this outfit is a basic sweater and jeans, with red-tinted lip balm as the makeup focal point. My final outfit is for a more casual dinner with your date (this is closest to my own Valentine’s Day plans!).
Regardless of what your Valentine’s Day looks like, you can never go wrong with a great scent. From romping through a field to going ice skating to a fancy dinner, perfume is something that is appropriate for every situation. My current favorite, and one especially suited for Valentine’s Day, is Chloé Love Story. Another current floral and feminine favorite is Yves Rocher Comme Une Evidence.
What are your plans for Valentine’s Day?
By “interlude” I mean that, instead of sharing an update, I’m actually going to do something with my nails!
A while ago I shared a mini drugstore haul, which included three nail polishes: a mauve frost, a glitter topcoat, and a quick-dry topcoat. Today, I’m going to share the look I did using all three.
This week, I have five stories from my everyday life for you.
- Last weekend I watched The Theory of Everything. I thought it was really good! I was really impressed by the acting and the cinematography. However, another wonderful aspect was Jane’s costumes. My favorite was Jane’s dress in the opening party scene (the four images at far right), but I also loved her everyday outfits, especially her turtleneck sweater/skirt combinations.
- On Tuesday I picked up my beloved Kat Von D Tattoo Liner (beloved because of its uniqueness in my collection and its cost, not because of how often I actually use it) and tried to use it. Nothing came out. I admit to freaking out a little bit — how did something I opened so rarely dry out? Was this an acceptable reason to return it to Sephora? Did eyeliners have a “dry-out” expiration date that I somehow missed? Then I realized I’d been storing it with the tip up, and after letting it sit for a bit with the tip facing down, it was as good as new.
- This week I performed the monologue that I had selected last week. I was surprised by how much fun I had while performing it! It felt powerful, somehow. And my acting teacher complimented me on it, which also felt really good.
- On my nails this week, I’ve been keeping it plain. After last week’s glitterbombs, I decided to tone it down this week by going nude. I used a coat of Sally Hansen Maximum Growth, then 1-2 coats of Revlon Sheer Pink, and completed it with a Sally Hansen quick-dry topcoat. Because I do love glitter, I kept Zoya Trixie topped with Wet n Wild Hallucinate from my previous manicure as an accent nail (which is why it’s starting to look a little ragged). I love how natural and well-kept this Revlon polish makes my nails look.
- I attended a local fashion show last night, and it was a lot of fun! The friends I was going with, however, didn’t tell me they were dressing up, so I only dressed up a little bit. I wish they had told me, because I get so few opportunities to wear a bold lip, and smoky eye makeup, and heels.
Do you have any stories from this past week?
I first fell in love with Yves Rocher about a year ago, and since then I’ve gotten a couple of different hauls from them. However, I think this is my single best one, with the products I’m most excited about trying out. 1/3 of this haul are products I know I like and wanted backups of, 1/3 are new skincare products, and 1/3 are miniature fragrances. I got each of these products anywhere from 50% to 70% off.