Thursday, 4 September 2014

Battle Of The Boxes | Glossybox vs Birchbox August 2014

Another month, another subscription box.

If you read my reviews of August's Birchbox and Glossybox, you'll know that I wasn't overly impressed with them upon face value. Some of my opinions have changed since trialling the products, and I initially believed these would tie for 'most terrible box'. Since then, I have tried and tested many of the products. So which box will win overall for best box this month? 

Birchbox - August 2014

As someone who adores getting makeup in my subscription boxes, I find it almost unfair for me to criticise a box (which isn't makeup based) like this. So upon first impressions, I obviously wasn't that impressed. Hair products, bath things and face scrubs… we've seen it all before. But after trying the box and experimenting with some of the products, well, I was won over. 

As many of you might know, Birchbox tend to be the more 'well rounded' of boxes, trying to include everything from skincare, to makeup to lifestyle. Augusts box went along the lines of 'going on holiday'/'going on an adventure'. This meant that the products included were meant for travelling and summer fun. What I found to be the nicest touch (and I didn't mention this in my review), was the little travel bag/makeup bag that was included. Perfectly acceptable for hand luggage, as it's a clear bag, and the design is wonderful! 

Product list:

- Wild About Beauty - Powder Eyeshadow (£13)

- Dead Sea Spa Magik - Shower Gel (£7.15)

- Sarah McNamara Miracle Skin Transformer Hydroactive Microderm (£25)

- Tommyguns Weather Protect Dew Drops Serum (£6.50)

- Resist Me - Liaison De Parfum (£105)

Lifestyle Extra:

- The Proposal by Tasmina Perry (£7.99)

Just as last month, Birchbox gave a diverse and interesting selection of products, including eyeshadow, shower gel, facial scrub, hair serum and a perfume tester. I honestly didn't know what to make of the selection upon opening the box. It seemed very anti-climatic and disappointing in comparison to the July box. That was until trialling some of the items. 

Most notably, the 'Miracle Skin Transformer Hydroactive Microderm' was by far my favourite. I don't think my skin has been this smooth in years! The scrub is very expensive, but after only one use I definitely noticed improvement. So much so that I demanded anyone around to feel how smooth my skin was… 

The only product I really, really didn't like was the perfume. I just about died when I caught a whiff of it, because to me it smelt that bad. Perhaps others enjoy that scent, but it was 100% too strong for me. Other than that, all of the products were amazing and so easy to use. The hair serum has made my hair incredibly smooth, the shower gel smells awesome, and I can never dislike a pretty eyeshadow. While I have yet to read the book that was included, I'm sure (as a massive book lover), I will enjoy reading the chapter sample. Overall, this turned out to be a wonderful box, full of surprisingly great products.

Glossybox - August 2014 
(The 3 Year Anniversary Box)

Like the Birchbox, I was disappointed with Glossybox this month. Everything included seemed so small and worthless, that it definitely didn't feel like I'd been given my moneys worth. Only two samples were full sized (as opposed to the previous month, where I'd been given a full set of full sized products). What really made it dislikable though was that the 'full sized' products were just so disappointing. A highlighter and a cheap mascara? Glossybox have definitely done better. But I felt that it would be unfair to judge this box fully without giving things a go first. So…

Product List:

- Philip Kingsley - Elasticizer (Full Size £38)

- Kryolan for Glossybox - Highlighter Cashmere (£12.95)

- Yves Rocher - Pink Nail Polish (£3.60)

- Figs & Rouge - Mini Hand Cream (£6.95)

- Essence - Crazy Volume Mascara (£2.79)

- Lalique - L'Amour (£67)

Last months Glossybox was entirely filled with amazing makeup products, so that was always going to be difficult to beat. I've raved about some of the products many times and (most) of the samples I received are now a part of my everyday makeup routine. That's some high expectations to overcome!

It goes without saying that the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer is amazing. I've been using it for a long time already, so the top-up was welcomed. While the full sized highlighter was somewhat anti-climatic, it serves its purpose well and is very creamy. One of the main things I liked about the highlighter was the sheer finish without the pink cast. I prefer for my highlighting to look as natural as possible, so this was perfect (as expected given the price tag).

The other full sized product, the mascara, was one of my bigger disappointments. While in the past I've been given high street mascaras, they have always been names like L'Oreal (a brand I love). To be given this made the box feel slightly pre-teen and I wondered whether this box was suitable for me… or for my little sister. Again, this was repeated with the nail varnish tester. The size reminded me of those little sets you get as a child full of cheap (and poor quality) nail varnishes - you know the ones I mean. This was an opinion I formulated upon opening the box, and it still hasn't changed since.

One thing I would like to note is that the perfume tester in this box was considerably better. The Birchbox fragrance was horrific, but Glossybox definitely excelled in this department. L'Amour is a lovely scent, that I've been coveting since getting the sample. 

The winner?

Birchbox did well on most counts and I cannot fault them for their collection of products this month. Glossybox by comparison was incredibly lacklustre. The box felt cheap and I couldn't quite see where I was getting my moneys worth. Birchbox didn't give a lot of full sized products, but I fell in love with many included - something that didn't happen with Glossybox this month.

What did you think of this months Glossybox/Birchbox?
Did you agree with my choice of winner? Did you like the boxes?


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