Thursday, 24 January 2013

Best Birchbox beauty products (according to me)

Hello my friends! Today I thought I'd share with you some of my favorite Birchbox products I've used over the last year of my subscription.  I've heard varying reviews of Birchbox, from people like myself who are super happy with it, and from others who were continuously disappointed by their samples. Personally, I think the trick is to have realistic expectations. You won't LOVE every single sample you get. For example, over the last 12 months and probably around 10 perfume samples, I LOVED two of them (this one and this one). But taste in perfume and most other beauty products is very subjective, and I have just been so thankful to have such a fun way to try out products I would have never discovered if it weren't for my Birchboxes arriving in the mail each month!  For me, the $10/month fee is well worth it, and I love that I can go on the website and review each product to earn points towards free stuff, too. Score!

Also, let it be known that I am something of a beauty product hoarder. In all honesty, I haven't even used many of my samples of the last year, but I keep them, ALL OF THEM, because I love the look of product packaging and design... just makes me happy. Especially the fancy French stuff. I know, I'm weird.

But I'll stop rambling now and tell you about my favorite favorite Birchbox products of the last year. These have all made it into my regular beauty routine, and some I have bought the full sized product of already. Hope maybe this helps any of you who may be in the market for some new stuff!

I have very weird skin. It can't decide if it wants to be disgustingly oily or dry and peeling. This weirdness is exacerbated in the winter and by acne treatments, to where my skin just becomes one giant clusterf***, which makes me sad. I feel like I can't use anti-aging treatments on my face because they're too oily, and products I use for acne dry me out like crazy. When I try to put on foundation, sometimes I feel like it makes my skin look worse, as it draws attention to the dry spots. What to do, what to DO? This Dr Jart "beauty balm" came as a sample in one of my Birchboxes, and I fell in love with it immediately. It's a four-in-one primer, moisturizer, sunscreen, and treatment serum, which I use as foundation. It goes on smooth like buttah, and moisturizes instead of drawing attention to my dry spots. It also has excellent coverage for such a lightweight "primer." Between this and the concealer I mention in #6, I don't feel the need for any other base makeup (except a little power, because the Dr Jart will make you look shiny.)

This is what I use each and every time I blow-dry and straighten my hair. I love the smell and feel like I'm helping to protect my hair from all the heat. It also seems to make my hair extra silky and shiny, which is muy buen. It claims to repair split ends, which I think must be true! I just checked, and I have almost no split ends - miraculous, since I haven't had a hair cut in a year. Not sure what else to say about this one... except that I wish it was cheaper?

As a human with extremely unruly, frizzy, and wavy-wannabe-curly-hair, I am always searching for the perfect product to tame the mane, so to speak. I'd say Miss Jessie's products are the closest thing I've found to something that actually works for me. It smells fun, and really does seem to help actually shape my waves into something almost curl-like and less frazzled. I also like the Pillow Soft Curls product probably just as much, and the smell a little more. Not sure exactly what the difference is, though I think the Quick Curls makes for tighter waves or curls.

This stuff does just what a dry shampoo is supposed to do: soaks up your grease and helps you go longer between washes - or at least look less dirty between washes. Smells great, works great, no residue. Need I say more?

Ok, hair "powder" is a little trickier than the aerosol type like the Oscar Blandi above, BUT I'd say this particular one is worth the potential mess.  IT SMELLS DIVINE. Like, I want to dump it all over my carpets and vacuum that ish up for a little room refresher, WHILE i'm rubbing it into my hair to soak up oil. No but really, it smells incredible. And it truly does work, though you will see more residue (especially in dark brunettes such as myself) until the powder fully absorbs the oil. Just follow the directions, though, and you'll be fine. This stuff is fabulous!

I am in love with this concealer. I have super dark circles under my eyes (it's genetic - no amount of sleep will cure them), and for years I searched for the perfect under-eye concealer... one that truly conceales. This concealer makes great claims to treat as well as cover up (diminishes fine lines, hydrates, reduces puffiness, etc), and while I don't have too many lines around my eyes yet, nor do I suffer with puffiness, I am super happy with the level of concealment and assume this is also helping me to fight aging around my eyes. And one last thing: IT LASTS FOREVER. You need such a tiny bit for each eye as it is very concentrated, and I have been using it for probably six months now and feel like it's only about half gone. Well worth the price.

*Note: this is not a sponsored post, though I do get points to be used towards products if you sign up for Birchbox through this link! Hooray!

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