October and November Birchboxes

This is a Birchbox review two-for.  The last two months have been pretty epic and I've had my attentions focused elsewhere.  Life is settling into a bit of a routine, and I've actually had a chance to finally use all the products in October's and November's Birchbox so I can get to the reviews!

October's Box

September's box took forever to arrive; I barely had time to sample all the products and get a review written before the end of the month.  I figured October's box would take just as long to arrive, especially since I got an email from Birchbox, the day after the box was supposed to ship, telling me there was a problem with shipping and my box would be delayed (they did give me 100 extra points for the inconvenience at least).  Surprisingly, the box arrived three days later!  October's theme was transformation; I guess since people transform themselves for Halloween.  I think the theme was a bit of a stretch, but I liked everything I got this go round.

  • beautyblender double:  That's the pink egg shaped thingy in the above picture.  It's for applying and blending concealer and base makeup.  I don't normally wear concealer or base, but could definitely see using this to soften and blend blush.  I did happen to use it in October to apply the moisture tint that was in September's box.  The beautyblender double is great for makeup application!  You get it wet before applying foundation so none of your foundation gets absorbed into the blender.  I really like the shape and texture of this makeup sponge and will definitely be using it again.  The pointy end was great for getting into small areas and the round end was great for blending.
  • theBalm cosmetics Mary-Lou Manizer:  I love this stuff!!!  A neutral shimmer powder that can be used as an eye shadow or as a highlighter; I wanted to powder down my entire body!  But then I would've ended up looking like a sparkly vampire and that's no good.  Seriously though, this highlighter is amaze-balls.  A+
  • LUNA Fiber Chocolate Raspberry Bar:  This bar was way better than I expected a fiber energy bar to be.  It was really moist and had a brownie like texture instead of being a dry unflavorful piece of cardboard.  It especially came in handy when I was staying in the NICU with Jack.  De-lish!
  • Supergoop! City Sunscreen Serum SPF 30:  I haven't tried this yet.  I'm super fair skinned and burn just thinking about going out in the sun.  This serum will probably be good for daily use for me when I'm not usually outside much, but at only SPF 30 I wouldn't dream of using it if I was going to be outside for more than 20 minutes or so.  I need SPF 100 if I'm going to spend any time outside; make this product that strong, and you've got me interested.
  • Lucy B. Cosmetics Roll On Perfume Oil Duo in Pink Frangipani and and Wild Australian Jasmine:  OMG! I have to turn on caps lock for this--I LOVE THIS!  LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS!!!  I'm not normally into perfumes, but I'm saving up to buy these in full size.  They can be worn alone or layered and they smell perfect to my nose.  Very light and floral.  They have my heart.

November's Box

November's box arrived during the blur of the first few days that Jack was home, but in the last couple of days I've actually managed to use all the samples, except for the hair stuff.  I've had no time, interest, or need to do my hair.  According to Birchbox, "This month's theme is Give and we've filled your Birchboxes with products from brands that give back and essentials that we are thankful for."  It's nice to know they picked brands that give back.

  • Oscar Blandi Pronto Texture & Volume Spray:  I haven't used this yet.  Perhaps around Christmas I'll give it a whirl.  It's supposed to create big bedroom hair.  I've never been good at styling my hair, so we'll see how this works out.  I also don't like my hair to be too big; I have a lot of hair and a small head, so if my hair gets too big, I'm nothing but a walking hairstyle and no head.
  • Archipelago Pomegranate Body Soap:  This soap smells great!  I'll probably put it in my gym bag when I start working out again or maybe put it in my guest bathroom.  It's nice to have a quality soap for anyone who stays over.
  • Marula - The Leakey Collection Omega Rich Facial Oil:  Marula oil is the new argan oil.  I've used argan oil in my hair with great results, but the marula oil is intended for use on the skin.  I was a bit skeptical about putting oil in my face, but the marula oil is really light and absorbed into my skin as fast as lotion.  The oil contains more antioxidants and omega fatty acids than other oils on the market, so it's great for anti-aging.  The sample is tiny, but just a bit of this oil goes a long way.  My only complaint is the pump of the container doesn't pump the oil very well and I really have to fight with it to get any out.  I haven't used it long enough to see any results, but I hope it lives up to all the hype.  If it does, I may very well shell out money for a full size bottle.
  • ModelCo FIBRE LASHXTEND Lengthening Mascara:  Full size sample, and just in the nick of time. I was getting eyelash extensions for months, but being on unpaid maternity leave, some luxuries have had to go, and I was really missing my mile long lashes.  That being said, it's been so long since I've used a mascara, and I've been so used to the extreme length and thickness of lash extensions, I'm not sure how well this mascara actually worked.  I don't think the mascara made my lashes as long as it should have, or at least as long as I remember some of my drugstore brand mascaras making my lashes.  I love that the mascara tube has a mirror on the side for on the go application.  I'll keep trying this to see if I like it better, but won't be buying it.
  • John Varvatos Artisan:  This is a men's cologne, and I'm not sure I'm sold on it.  When I smelled it I thought it was a woman's perfume.  Maybe if Dennis puts it on it'll smell more manly, but even if it ends up smelling manlier, I doubt I'll like this scent.
Overall, both boxes get a thumbs up from me.  I'm still relieved there hasn't been another crappy box like August's.  These two have been much more like July's.  Keep it up, Birchbox!

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P.S.  I get referral points if you sign up through me. <3

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