May & June 2016’s Subscription Boxes: First Impressions

I’m not happy that I’m waiting so long to share the subscription boxes I get. I want to get my first impressions out there faster. So instead of waiting for a sneak peak right before I start posting that month’s reviews, I’ve decided to do a first impressions post when all my subscription services for that month come in.

That being said, I’ll need to do some catching up and post first impressions on May and June’s boxes! Let’s take a look at May.

Birchbox brings on another winner.

This year, Birchbox has been stellar. With just one fluke in February, they’ve been hitting it out of the park ever since. May’s box was no exception. I opted for the pre-curated box because they’ve just been so great lately.

May’s Birchbox was well rounded with products in every category: makeup, hair, skincare, and fragrance. I’m not the biggest fan of perfume samples, but I can tell you this one wasn’t bad. Plus, do you see that deluxe size Benefit Hoola bronzer sample? That alone is what sold me. I’ve reviewed the shampoo in the past back when I was blogging on Tumblr, but I think I’ll do a summary review of it over here.

Ipsy comes in at a close second.

In the battle between the $10 subscriptions, Birchbox definitely won in May. Ipsy’s wasn’t bad, but it definitely wasn’t my favorite.

I’ve reached that point in the year where I’m over mascara samples. I just accumulate too many and since I do try them for reviews, I end up having multiples open at a time. This drives my anal retentive self insane. The polish color is traffic cone orange, which isn’t my cup of tea upon first impression. However, I don’t mind leaving my comfort zone when it comes to polish. That lipstick though? Just you wait till I get to talk about it.

Boxycharm winning the game again.

And then there’s Boxycharm, which continued its winning streak with this box. While still not quite as stellar as the March box that set the bar, it was still super impressive.

First, we have two well known brands in the box: MakeupGeek and PUR. I’m a huge fan of both brands and was stoked to see full sized products (one of them brand new to the market) in the box. Please, Boxycharm, keep this up! That clear brow gel was also an impressive product and I do like seeing pretty polish colors in the box. The only downside upon first impression was that Catherine Malandrino perfume. I’ve already reviewed the Romance de Provence scent. I can safely say I’d rather not see anymore perfumes from this brand in any of my future boxes.

Overall, May was a pretty great month. Now, let’s look at June!

Birchbox was a good contender.

Yet again, I decided to go with the pre-curated box. This one was not bad at all! They killed it by giving a good variety: hair, skincare, and makeup. I love that we got both an eyeshadow stick (hiding at the very bottom of the box) and a lip crayon. Sadly, as you’ll see when I review, this shade definitely didn’t work for my complexion. That’s one thing that Birchbox needs to get better at in the pre-curated boxes. They should have a variety of lip shades that suite different complexions. But other than that, I was satisfied with my haul.

Ipsy also pulled through with a good bag.

Ipsy’s bag choice was interesting in theory. I love graffiti art, but I’m not really feeling this bag design so much. Well, we’re not really here for the outer bag, but this one I found a bit ugly.

The products inside the bag were good. We got the tiniest Urban Decay eyeshadow pan sample, but honestly it’s a duchrome shade that will take me forever to get through anyway. One thing to note: mine arrived completely broken. I contacted Ipsy’s customer service and they got back to me incredibly quickly. The next day, I got a shipment notification order for my replacement and it arrive two days later. Props for awesome customer service.

Other than the broken shadow (which I managed to salvage as a loose pigment), the rest of the items were nice. I’ve tried that ClariSea scrub/mask before and liked it, so I was glad to have another one in my stash. Not so exciting was the black eyeliner. I just have so much black eyeliner, I’d rather receive different shades. Still, this one is suppose to be designed for the waterline, so that’ll be an interesting aspect to test.

Mixed emotions about June’s box.

I really can’t decide just how I feel about June’s Boxycharm. It isn’t bad, by any means. However, it’s nowhere near as good (on first impression) as March and May’s boxes.Now, we did get a good variety of makeup: an eyeliner from Girlactik, shine control powder from OFRA, and highlight from Cougar. Maybe it’s the black liner (again, I have so many), but I felt a little uninspired by the box.


I did like that we got a three pack of sheet masks to try. This really lets me see if they’re doing what they claim to do. The nail polish is a pretty color, but nail polish isn’t my favorite item to get in boxes. I don’t mind them, but after getting one or two I’m kind of done with them for the rest of the year.

I’ve already gotten all my subscription boxes for July, but I want to hold off for a few days on giving you my first impressions on those. But for now, I can’t wait to post more in-depth about some of the stellar products that I got to try through subscription services.


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