Subscription: Essence BeautyBox
Referral Code: 3657-F658-7DCD
What to Expect: “Each month, our team of beauty experts will carefully select the products to send, and you’ll receive your beautiful box with 5 products to discover and enjoy. We strive to feature a product from a Black-owned business in each box.”
I got this box at a discount, 6 months for $60, and I’m calling it my Blacklady Birchbox. Or Women of Color Birchbox… whichever makes you smile =)
While Birchbox calls me gorgeous lady or whatever, Essence makes it clear they don’t care that you paid for this box and it went to the wrong address because the “CURRENT RESIDENT” gets to keep your package! Grrrrr.
I suppose I can’t complain about this every month if I never email them to ask why they do this!
I was inspired by Mailbox Junkie’s bright, tropical pictures, so I took advantage of the sun one day and ran outside with my favorite serving tray.
The Box: Transform Her Every Day
I like this card with why items were chosen and by whom. When you sign up you take a little beauty quiz. It’s quite short [6 questions], and right now it’s irrelevant, but I think they’re planning to do variations at some point. Which is good because, as you’ve probably noticed, there are lots of different hairstyles WOC choose to go for. I’m natural / naturally curly.
La Belle Femme Pomegranate Body Butter: $25 for full size. “Handcrafted from natural moisturizers and skin protectants, combined with the highest quality essential and fragrance oils.”
I thought this was a body scrub for some reason, then I opened it and it’s a “body butter” that really just looks and smells like coconut oil with essential oil in it. It’s way too strong for me, but I used a little bit of it and feel bad throwing it away. Sigh…
Also, there are no ingredients on the product or the Etsy page or a size on this sample or on the website, so I have no idea what size this mystery product is.
Also, I had no idea pomegranates had a smell… I’ll have to pay more attention next Christmas whilst I splatter red everywhere and eschew the bowl of water technique.
Bite Beauty Opal Lipgloss: $22 for full size [on Sephora]. This isn’t full size, but a good sized sample.
Not a fan. I opened this to see, but it’s not really for me. I didn’t swatch it because I may or may not have used it after an afternoon of buffet and bottomless drinks…
Perfect Edges from Creme of Nature: $4.69 for 2.25oz [from Sally Beauty]. “Holds down edges, while moisturizing and adding Exotic Shine.”
I don’t know why I opened this either. My hair is pretty wispy, and when I applied a tiny bit my hair just looked like it had a clump of gel. Know anyone who’d want this?? It’s a substantial amount!!
I wonder what other sort of edges it will perfect and add exotic shine to? My desk is a bit lackluster…
Curly Magic Curl Stimulator from Uncle Funky’s Daughter: 2oz sample, $16 for 12oz with a pump [from Target].
I’ve never heard of this brand and I just found my new favorite product!!! My curls looked bangin’ after I put this in! My sister said she’d heard of it and also really wanted to try it. Amazon has an 18oz bottle for $25 plus $7 shipping, so I’ll definitely be grabbing some of this from Target!
The Revitalizer from Biossance: $6 for 0.05 fl oz sample, $58 for the full size 1.7 fl oz bottle. “A weightless universal moisturizer that can be used from head to toe on a daily basis.”
Another new favorite! I’ve already got enough face stuff, so I’ve been applying this to my throat and decolletage, and it makes my skin so velvety and succulent. I need more… darn Essence for putting in such a spendy product! But I saw this was also in Glossybox, so I might be able to snag some from swaps!
Seriously I was just stroking my throat and upper chest one night because my skin felt SOOO amazing!
February update: I wore my false lashes while I was in Vegas, and I liked them! They were pretty easy to apply, though there was some operator error and I accidentally left a huge gap between my real lashes and the falsies. However, drunk guys don’t notice that stuff in dark clubs. If they did, I would’ve demanded a round of shots!
sidenote: These lashes also make a wonderful Charlie Chaplin-esque mustasche…
Verdict: This box was half great for me. I gave the Bite gloss to my friend, the body butter to my boyfriend [who will never use it], and I’m not sure what to do with the edge cream. But I found some HG [holy grail] worthy items in the Uncle Funky’s curl product and the Biossance oil.
I think this box will be better once they send out boxes for curlies, relaxed, weave’d, and etc. hair styles. Also, their referral program is silly and I hope they take a peep at that too. One thing I do really appreciate is that Essence tries to send out products from black business owners. It might seem odd to others, but it is nice having products made by people who share your hair and skin views/woes. Like buying other feminine products from female owned businesses… just makes more sense, right?
Disclosure: This box was purchased by me at a discount. There is a referral code.