This month's sample choice was all about the mascaras! I don't think Birchbox has done a single-category sample choice before. At first I didn't think that seemed all that exciting because I'm fairly set in my ways about which mascaras I use. However, when I thought about it, it's actually a pretty good deal. I just went with my usual Benefit They're Real because I love it...and actually a sample this size has some pretty significant value! I would say at least $10, which is the cost of the whole box. Check out my reviews below to see what I thought of the rest of my "Positive Force" box this month.
My box contained: Avene Thermal Spring Water (Full-size, $12.50-$18), Benefit Cosmetics They're Real! Mascara (Full-size, $24), BioRepublic Green Tea Detox Purifying Sheet Mask (Full-size, $14.50 for 3), Harvey Prince Hello Body Creme (Full-size, $22), Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray (Full-size, $22-42)
Benefit Cosmetics They're Real! Mascara
As I'm sure I've mentioned before, I just adore this mascara! It gives you that really voluminous "faux lashes" look without all the glue and fuss. It manages to create that right mix of glamorous but natural, that is still appropriate for everyday wear.
I think the most frequent problem other ladies have experienced with this mascara is that they have a lot of difficulty taking it off. In case you have that problem too and don't want to spend the big bucks on Benefit's makeup remover, I'll let you in on a little secret. I've used all of these makeup removing wipes with this mascara and they all quickly and thoroughly remove it: Ponds Fresh Wet Cleansing Towlettes, Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes, and Skyn Iceland Glacial Cleansing Cloths.
I received so many samples of Harvey Prince product last year in my Birchboxes: Hello Fragrance (February 2014 & August 2014), Ageless Liquid Loofah in September 2014, and Petaly Noir Fragrance in October 2014. Honestly, I wasn't wild about any except the Hello fragrance, and I expressed that in all my Birchbox.com product reviews. So, I was kind of hoping I wouldn't see another Harvey Prince product for a while...well, I guess it has been exactly a year!
I'm a bit surprised they call this a "body creme" because that makes me think of something with a thick, even pasty consistency that deeply moisturizes your whole body. Instead, I this has the same consistency of an average hand lotion; it's a bit thin and soaks into your skin very quickly. I like the "Hello" fragrance quite a bit, but I don't think this creme smells much like it. The base notes are similar but the overwhelming scent is a pretty artificial orange and lemon combination that reminds me of some dish soaps. It's a shame it doesn't live up to the original fragrance.
I just got the Oribe Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray in my July 2015 Birchbox. I know I received the Dry Texturizing Spray before but maybe it wasn't part of a regular Birchbox. Maybe I received it in a Birchbox at an event or at the Build Your Own Birchbox station, because I can't seem to find the previous review. What I remember from before is that it was a pretty average "dry shampoo" and that there wasn't much product in the aerosol can, so it only lasted 2 or 3 uses if that. It also left my hair feeling a bit like straw. I'm never a big fan of texturizing sprays because I prefer a sleek, polished look. If you're aiming to create a slightly messy, beachy look, this product is perfect for you!
I was intrigued by the Avene Thermal Spring Water because it seemed to me to be very similar to the Evian Spray I reviewed earlier this year. I was excited to see that Avene is also from France. I love getting French products in my Birchboxes! This is a nice hydrating mist that really helps with my dry to very dry skin type. I think this spray comes out a bit thicker than other ones that I've tried, which actually left my skin feeling moisturized a bit longer.
A lot of people like to use this type of product in the summer time but I actually love to use it right around now - at the end of fall and beginning of winter - because the air is starting to get crisp and colder which can be pretty harsh on your skin.
The BioRepublic Green Tea Mask smells like chamomile and honey to me, which in my opinion is lovely and very relaxing. It's a bit of an investment because you have to leave it on for 15-20 minutes. The quality of the mask itself, how it is packaged, and how it sets on your face is very similar to Korean sheet masks like the Dr. Jart ones.
This one does leave a lot of product on your face when you remove it that isn't very easy to rub into your skin. So, I think it is best to let it sit on your skin and absorb for a few minutes afterward. My skin felt tighter (and a little sticky) after using the mask. It definitely felt like it helped open up my pores a little bit, but did nothing to hydrate my very dry skin which is usually my primary skincare concern.
The full-size price immediately threw me off, but it's actually for three masks not just one - which is a great deal compared to similar products! It is currently out of stock on the Birchbox website, but should hopefully be back soon.