Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Holiday 2015 : Limited-Edition Birchbox Exclusive "Luxe List"

I don’t find much appeal in beauty subscription boxes and I have already talked about it before. If I am spending any amount of money on anything, I want to be in control of what I buy. That is why I have never given any sincere thought on subscribing to Ipsy, Birchbox or any other subscription boxes. Anyway, Birchbox is a beauty subscription service that starts at 10$ per month. They have a whole lot of products in their website which you can directly buy. They also have an online store and physical stores in New York and Atlanta.

Today, I am sharing my quick thought on “Limited Edition: Luxe List”; it is one of their exclusive limited-edition gift boxes and is currently available on their website. 

This Black Friday and during Cyber Monday, I might have been possessed by some shopping demon. I was that crazy shopaholic girl with a laptop on Thanksgiving so that I can continue online shopping. Over the last few years that I have been here in the USA, I have never actively participated in Black Friday shopping, and it looks like this year I compensated for all of those missing years! Birchbox had 25% off coupon and with that discount, investing in this box seemed profitable. Laura Mercier, Tata Harper, Ilia Beauty, Oribe, Rituals – all these are very luxurious brands and I know for sure that they are a bit pricey for me to buy at a regular price. This was really appealing to me :-) This was my first Birchbox purchase and overall I am quite happy with it. It was fast, free shipping and they were very responsive to some of the questions I had. Like I said, it is still available here if you want to check it out. Before discussing the products, let’s first take a detailed look at the price.


Amount in Kit

in Full-Size
Full-Size Price (USD)
Value in Set (USD)
0.5 oz/15 ml
5 ml
Candlefish Travel Candle
3.5 oz
3.5 oz. 
Cynthia Rowley Beauty Makeup Bag
Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Colour
0.5 oz./1.64 g
0.5 oz.
Ilia Beauty Tinted Lip Conditioner
0.14oz / 4g
0.14 oz.
5 fl oz.
1.7 oz. 
Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer
0.5 fl oz./14 ml
0.5 fl oz. 
1.6 oz.
2.5 fl oz./75 ml
2.5 fl oz.
1.7 fl oz./50 ml.
10 ml.


The price for this box is $65 and it is a one-time purchase only. With these highly coveted brands in full-size and generously sized samples already makes the cost of this box quite reasonable. But with my 25% off it cost me $48.75; I think I scored quite a good deal here.

Ilia Tinted Lip Conditioner in “Bang Bang”: Let’s start with something that has been on my wish list for quite a while. Ever since I opened Beautylish account, I have been browsing their shop section from time to time and I have been mesmerized by these incredibly suave and royal looking products from Ilia Beauty. It’s also a natural brand. I am very much interested in their lipsticks but their steep price has always prevented me from biting the bullet! The product looks as gorgeous as I hoped. The lipstick bullet overall is sturdy but the cap could have been better! Being a luxury splurge-y item, I expected a bit higher quality. It is a lip conditioner; it is not meant to be super opaque pigmented. This has decent pigmentation and like mentioned in their website, you can build up the intensity gradually. “Bang Bang” is a sheer red that pulls of a more orangey tone on my skin. I have been using it since last week and I am amazed to see how long it can keep my lips protected from the drying and flaking up. I will admit that I don’t achieve the prettiest looking lips; it cannot hide the fine lines on my lips nor is it ultra-moisturizing. It’s very light weight and I actually don’t feel anything on my lips. On an average, I reapply my lip balm around 3-4 pm. But with this I don’t feel any need to do so! I think that’s incredible! While I don’t love sheer lipstick enough to go out and buy a full-size regular product, I am quite sure this is going to be a staple in my collection.

Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Colour in “Gilded Gold: The name of the product itself sounds so lavish! Ever since I started exploring this wonderful world of beauty products, I have heard everyone love and applaud these pencils. This is another quite expensive product, though. I don’t know why Laura Mercier as a brand has never intrigued me! But I got their baked highlighter in 2015 Sephora Favorites Superstars set and I love it. So I am very ecstatic to get this. I have worn it twice and the staying power is phenomenal. It applied so smooth and quite easy to blend. I am very happy with this by far. And as the name suggests it is striking gold and will be flattering on a variety of skin tone.

Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in “Dark Like Me”: What a beautiful shade! It’s a luxury nail polish brand and it’s definitely a very luxe looking bottle. It feels quite heavy too. This is a vampy, seductive deep berry shade in cream formula. I have similar shades from different brands, but when I wear this, it looks so beautiful and feels so sensual; I love it. It does need 2 or 3 coats; also it needs a bit of work to get an even layer. It does not stay as long as I would have liked. But I do love the look. I appreciate it being in here because I would otherwise never buy it on my own.

Cynthia Rowley Beauty Makeup Bag: I have accumulated countless number of little makeup bags, thanks to my rather unhealthy obsession with value kits. But they are not of the greatest quality. I currently use a flat cube-type bag I got from Ebags for travelling and I love it. But this bag is excellently made. It’s big enough to contain products for a 3-4 day trip. It also has a side pocket which can be quite convenient. I think this might be the new travel makeup bag for me.

R+Co DEATH VALLEY Dry Shampoo: I tried dry shampoo for the first time earlier this year. I don’t have much of a problem of oily scalp, but now that I know what dry shampoo I have suddenly have lot of respect for the product. I was not aware of this brand so I don’t have a lot of expectation. It smells awesome and that’s such a good thing. But I am not wowed by it. It’s not any better than the Batiste that I use which is just $3.99 for the travel size. I will keep on using it and will report back.

Oribe Supershine Moisturizing Cream: I am not big into trying hair products. But I have heard many good things about Oribe. I have used it twice and I am really liking it so far. First of all, the smell is wonderful and it immediately brings a lot of shine to my hair. It keeps it healthier and smoother till my next wash. I am really loving it. It is not full-size but will definitely last me at least for few weeks.

Rituals Ginkgo’s Secret Hand Balm: Another brand that I have been intrigued by for a long time. But I never really researched about it. I believe this brand is more readily available in Europe. It’s a nice hand balm with a very invigorating smell that lingers for a long time. It’s not oily and absorbs quickly. Also, that tube is so handsome :-)

Candlefish Travel Candle: It is in the number 082. Very spiritual, simple and refreshing smell. I have never heard about this brand but who would not appreciate a nice smelling candle? :-) It’s not super strong and it will burn out quite quickly but I do love it in this box.

Umbra Magnolia Jewelry Dish: Such a cute little piece of accessory. It is a jewelry dish, it will definitely hold some dainty pieces of jewelry, but I love it. It is so elegant looking :-) I have already used it my blog photography and I am 100% sure that it is going to be reoccurring quite often. I love this!

The next two products are skincare products!  Tata Harper Repairative Moisturizer for face and 111 Skin Space Defence Bright Eye Lift Gel NAC Y2 for eyes. These are also two smallest sizes in this box. And the price for a regular size is just insane. I have just tried them once or twice just to get a feel. So I am not quite comfortable about forming my final opinion as skincare products need some time to show their affect. And given the price, I really need to put good time in reviewing them. But they have not broken me out yet and I will report back once I am done with them :-) 

So, holidays are just right around the corner! If you are looking for a special substantial/hefty gift to someone and yet you are unsure and don’t want to stick to one big product, this could be a great gift! These products in here definitely will prove useful for almost every skin tone! “Bang Bang” is a very subtle red that can be built up to look flattering on a lot of skin tones, “Gilded Gold” is going to look flattering on almost everyone, the jewelry dish is just too cute. Also makeup bag is very well built. The dry shampoo, hand cream, hair cream and nail polish and the candle are all something that is definitely going to get used, no matter who end up getting this gift :-) The more I used them, the more I fell in love and wondered how good this box is! I am definitely going to get very good use out of everything in here. I highly recommend this!

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