to pamper / beauty box review (allure, birchbox, sephora play)

If you’re interested in a beauty box, the Allure Beauty Box has been impressive. I subscribed in December 2017 when I heard of the January spoilers (a full size $85 Sunday Riley serum). They have a good balance of prestige and non-prestige brands. Value-wise, it is easy to pick 1-2 products in the box that exceed the $15/monthly fee*. The box contains a booklet that explains each product and discounts for the full size. You can go month to month, which is what I do.

A sample of what’s been in my boxes:

  • October 2018: 7 products. Sunday Riley x 2, Caudalie, Hourglass mascara, YSL lipgloss, etc. Valued at $86.

  • September 2018: 5 products, 2 were full size. Drunk Elephant Babyfacial, full size MAC lipstick, Tarte x 2, IGK, etc. Valued at $66.

  • August 2018: 6 products, 2 were full size. Laneige, Caudalie, Eyeko, etc. Valued at $69.
  • July 2018: 8 products, 1 was full size. Olay, Ouai, Sunday Riley, etc. Valued at $110.
  • June 2018: 5 products, 3 were full size. Kat Von D and Ole Henricksen. Valued at $69.

I prefer skincare and I like when the products are prestige brands or interesting products from the smaller/mass brands. I don’t wear makeup often but the offered brands tend to be prestige (like Make Up For Ever, MAC) and/or a product that I would actually use (like highlighter or lip product). Hair products are not in every box. No perfume samples to date!

Perhaps a part of their success is not customizing their boxes like their competitors below (excluding color variations for makeup). Spoilers are usually available, e.g., here is November’s. I like the spoilers – no surprise needed here.

Signup link through Allure (they have gift subscriptions)
My referral link
* – first box is $10, subsequent boxes are $15 each. One year is $150. I tried cancelling after 2 months and they offered me 4 boxes for $10.

Signup through Amazon (While you may get an older box as first box and don’t get a $5 discount on your first box, you don’t have to deal with Allure’s customer service. Not that I had issues with them when trying to cancel via e-mail. Recommended if you have issues with getting mail as you’ll be dealing with Amazon and it also sounds like they ship faster.)

Alternatives

  • Birchbox:$10/month. I did Birchbox for a bit, stopped, restarted, and then stopped again after they devalued their program. Birchbox is still quite good for shopping, especially during November sales, for discovery kits and value sets. I like higher end brands and while Birchbox sells them, their customized boxes don’t consistently have them. Is the box worth the $10? Not to me. The brands also tend to repeat, which is not a good thing when it is not an appealing brand. I also think there is room to improve the website, which in my opinion, is hard to shop and lacks filtering/sorting functions that are common in most other sites.
  • Sephora Play: $10/month. This was super exciting when it initially launched and registration was limited but it fizzed out for me and I cancelled after 10 months. It had too much makeup/perfume, some skincare that wasn’t appealing, Sephora Collection products, or it started repeating. This is great for someone who isn’t picky. I ended up selling most of what I got. A non-committal alternative is buying the Play boxes that aren’t monthly or past monthly boxes when Sephora clears them out.

All images from Allure.com

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to pamper / {july 2012} allure beauty box

I have posted about Allure’s beauty box two times. It’s hard to stay on top of these things because they don’t announce it far in advance and when the deal goes live, it goes fast! I get an email alert when a thread I follow is updated and the ladies over there are usually good about letting others in on the news. My lucky girlfriends got a personalized email from me persuading them to spend money :) The total haul:

Continue reading “to pamper / {july 2012} allure beauty box”

to pamper / {november 2011} allure beauty box

I posted about Allure’s beauty box a few months ago. I wasn’t expecting to see another one so soon, but time has been flying. This beauty box is cheaper than last time’s — $29.99 + $10 for shipping (reportedly) worth $250. Overall, this box is always a steal if you can use most of it. Typically all products are full size unless otherwise indicated. If you’re a brunette with processed hair, you should definitely consider.

Continue reading “to pamper / {november 2011} allure beauty box”

to pamper / allure beauty box

Every spring, Allure magazine comes out with a Beauty Box. It is usually a box chock full of low and high-end beauty-related, full-sized(!) products for a very reasonable price. The prices have gone up over the years and the box has expanded. It’s only a great deal if you actually have a need for the products. The Allure website always posts the product line-up so you can do your own analysis before it goes on sale.

According to chat logs, it’s been 3 years since I’ve bought one. This year’s looked exceptionally good – $39.99 + $14.31 (shipping and tax) for $350 worth of products – and this was determined just by glancing at the high ticket items. One can never have too much eye cream or anti-aging products! The BB is also a great way to get introduced to a brand/product. So far, I am a fan of the Oscar Blandi Volumizing Dry Shampoo Spray. I also loved the Colorescience Mineral Powder SPF Brush and Olay SPF facial moisturizer from years back.

If you’re reading this now, it’s too late to order. It sells out within hours! For this reason, I have an alert set up to notify me when the deal rolls around every year. I blasted a quick email to a few girlfriends and am glad that most of them got in on the deal and are pleased with their purchase. I am not responsible for making sure you use the products :).


Image from Allure.com

A quick shot of my own box.  There were approximately 23 items:

1) Aveeno Positively Nourishing Body Wash $6
2) Aveeno Smart Essentials Pore Purifying Facial Wash $7
3) Benefit the POREfessional PRO Balm Pore Minimizer $28
4) Biore Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser $8
5) Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Polish in Debbie $18
6) Clean & Clear Advantage Popped Pimple Relief drying paste $11
7) Clean & Clear Morning Burst Boost body wash $6
8) Clean & Clear Morning Burst Surge power cleanser $11
9) Colorescience Pro Pressed Eyeshadow Palette $35
10) Garnier Fructis Pre Clean Styling Gel $5
11) John Frieda Frizz-Ease 3-Day Straight Semi-Permanent Styling Spray $10
12) John Frieda Full Repair Touch-Up Flyaway Tamer $9
13) John Frieda Sheer Blonde Go Blonder Controlled Lightening Spray $10
14) Joico K-PAK Color Therapy Restorative Styling Oil $13
15) Joico K-PAK Moisture Intense Hydrator Treatment $10
16) Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Night Moisturizer $20
17) Nyx Soft Matte Lip Cream $6
18) Orly Coquette Cutie $5
19) Oscar Blandi Pronto Invisible VOLUMIZING DRY SHAMPOO SPRAY $23
20) RoC BRILLIANCE Anti-Aging Face Primer $28
21) RoC RETINOL CORREXION Deep Wrinkle Night Cream $20
22) Spornette Little Wonder Brush $4
23) Suki Eye Lift Cellular Renewal Cream $55

Don’t use something? Give it away. I am still looking for a candidate for the blonde spray. Let me know if you want it. I think my blonde girlfriends here have color jobs that are far too costly to dabble with lightening spray.