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Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015

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Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Box

Beauty Box 5 is a monthly beauty and makeup subscription box. It’s also one of the cheapest beauty subscription boxes – only $8.25 a month with an annual subscription. They tend to feature more drugstore brands, and usually the product sizes are deluxe or full size. (Sometimes they still send out the dreaded foil packets though).

My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).

Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Items

The Subscription Box: Beauty Box 5

The Cost: $12 a month (or $10 a month with a 3-month subscription; $8.25 a month with annual subscription)

The Products: 4-5 full size and sample size beauty products.

Ships to: US and Canada

Check out all of our Beauty Box 5 Reviews and the Beauty and Makeup Subscription Box Directory!

Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Info

Each Beauty Box 5 box comes with an informational card detailing each item in your box for that month.

Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Softsoap

Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Shampoo – 1.7 oz Value $.50

Softsoap Nutri Serums Vitamin E Body Wash – 1.7 oz Value $1

Well… I am not excited about either of these items, but they will be used or donated. (It seems kind of weird to me to send basic Garnier shampoo – I would think they would at least want to send a new product from their line).

Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Nail

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Strip-Tease – FULL SIZE! Value $8.50

Coastal Scents Eye Shadow Sampler in Nude, Amber Bronze, Platinum Blue, and Opal Black – Value $2

I couldn’t find this exact nail strip pattern online for sale, so I’m not sure if it is a discontinued style.

I’ve sampled Coastal Scents eye shadows before in subscription boxes, and I like their pressed powders. This is probably my favorite mini collection of colors I’ve seen too.

Beauty Box 5 Review – January 2015 Mascara

Ultraflesh The Gold Standard Mascara in Blackout – .08 oz Value $6.25

Hm, it seems like the Ultraflesh brand is no longer in business? (I’m guessing that’s the case based on the fact that their facebook page hasn’t been updated since 2011 and the website listed on the package is no longer live. (

This mascara gets great reviews, but I’m hesitant to try it because I’m wondering how old this sample is – let me know what you think.

Verdict: This box is a bit of a mixed bag for me. I like the eye shadow sampler a lot, and I was excited to try this mascara when I read the reviews, but now I’m a little concerned about the age of this sample. UPDATE: It seems like the mascara is definitely old, and not being sold any more (besides from wholesalers who are moving old inventory).

What did you get from Beauty Box 5 this month? Do you think the mascara is safe to use?

Written by Liz Cadman

Liz Cadman

Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She’s been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!
All views in this review are the opinion of the author. My Subscription Addiction will never accept payment in exchange for a review, but will accept a box at no cost to provide honest opinions on the box. This post may contain affiliate/referral links. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.


  1. I LOVED/LOVE the mascara. I put it into my everyday makeup pouch that I keep in the bathroom separate from the rest of my makeup collection and I am super bummed that their site is no longer active. I will probably try to find it on eBay once I run out of the sample.

  2. I absolutely loved, loved, LOVED that mascara and was so very sad to not be able to find it to purchase. That’s the only thing that pisses me off. If no one wants theirs, just let me know. I bought it for $3 shipped off someone else, but I would love more!

  3. Has anyone contacted their customer service? (One to one, not Facebook?)

    • I contacted their Support, and they cancelled my subscription without my even asking–they’re obviously used to their customers leaving!

  4. I like drugstore products. I like receiving brands and products I am familiar with. I love Ipsy but most of the time I never heard of the product. It is good to try new brands but I am a fan of the drugstore so this works for me. I actually liked this month’s box. I can always use a travel shampoo for those times when I realize I ran out of shampoo. I actually got a glitter gold french tip manicure from sally hansen versus those red striped ones and I think the one I got is gorgeous. I received a eyeshadow duo from Hard Candy (Ive seen this line at Walmart) in a gold and blue color. It was pretty. I am disappointed about the mascara being old. That’s disgusting and disappointing. I can tolerate drugstore products but not old ones. Overall, I feel BB5 doesnt deserve so much bad feedback. I don’t think think they send all old products though because the Dove Bodywash that was sent a few months back is new. (I see the ads for it on tv) and a revlon mascara that was sent awhile back was fairly new. It’s just unfortunate they did that with this mascara.

    • It’s not that EVERYTHING they send is old… The problem is, the newer things they send are offered elsewhere as free samples. They are charging $12 a month to send old, discontinued and free (or very close to free) items. For $12 you can go to a dollar store and get way more for your money and it’ll be close to the same quality.

      • But the box is supposed to be beauty samples. That’s what it says in the description. Everyone claims we could get the shampoo and bodywash for free but to me, those are items that I would see in a travel section of a store. The free stuff is the foil packets.

      • I’m with you on that Kimberly. People get the same size coastalscents sampler free with purchase off their website. So that’s a freebie. You’ve got a discontinued mascara and then the travel size products are less than a dollar. BB5 customers are basically paying the full $10 for a Sally Hansen product and the other $2 covers the travel sizes and freebies. Hardly made back in value what was paid. You can get better bang for the buck at the Dollar Store or even just by getting a Walmart or Target Beauty box for MUCH cheaper than BB5.

  5. I too am locked in with BB5 for a few more months. I also got the annual sub for the sale price of $6 per box. I regret this decision and it is so disappointing that they would send out expired product. Every month this sub just gets worse and worse. I tossed the mascara. This month was a complete waste for me. Not one item this box that I like. I have received about 5 of these little Coastal Scents eyeshadows in the last several months so I am stocked up on these for a long time!

  6. I got the same box as Liz, except my eye shadow palette is Set 43, with the super-bright ORANGE & golden yellow colors: Mimosa, Deep Cantaloupe, Bright Tangerine & Volcanic Blast. I generally love Coastal Scents palettes, but these are just too over the top for a middle aged woman. This was my 11th BB5 box of my second one-year subscription, and I’ve officially called it quits with them. When I received that empty plastic bottle from BB5 2 months back, I knew the love affair was on rocky ground. BB5 used to be so much fun to receive, but the last couple of boxes have been super-disappointing. I’m so glad I read all the posts about the old mascara – I’m chucking mine out right now, and I was planning to try it tomorrow morning, too. Saved by the blog! The Softsoap body wash bottle is made of such hard plastic that it was impossible to dispense it with one hand in the shower. I hade to S-Q-U-E-E-Z-E it with both hands to get the product out. The hideous black and red striped Salon Effects nail strips are too gruesome to comment rationally on, the less said about them, the better. The Garnier Fructis travel-size shampoo for normal hair did a number on my color-treated hair, leaving it clumpy and stuck-together. There was nothing good about this box at all, except that it made up my mind not to renew my subscription, so it actually saved me money!

  7. A huge warning about using expired mascara – I thought it was safe to use an older one, only about 18 months old, that was still sealed. I wound up with a horrible bacterial infection AND a scratched cornea. It took 3 months, a ton of antibiotics/drops and 8 ophthalmologist visits before I was healed. Just. Don’t. Do. It. The fact BB5 is sending long ago discontinued makeup (it’s likely 3 years old, at least), drug store freebies, and other lower end samples should be all that’s needed to stop folks from subbing. For another $1 (ipsy or BB) you get products that are safe, often full size, and not consistently drug store cheapies. I can’t believe they thought no one would notice the mascara’s age or the fact the manufacturer hasn’t been in business for YEARS. That to me means they’re buying from a third party wholesaler of discontinued (and likely expired) cosmetics. While safe to shop for discontinued items, it’s never a good idea to buy expired ones, or even those that are questionable. When it comes to your vision, it’s not worth the risk.

  8. I tried BB5 for one month (twice). Both times I was so unimpressed (and kind of ticked) that I vowed never again. Every month when I see the reviews it re-affirms my decision.

    Actually, I am so glad that there is a box I do not want.

  9. I received the same as pictured except the eyeshadows I received are bright and scream primary school art project or hooker. How is a 44 year old woman supposed to wear school bus yellow, dark purple, royal blue and grass green eyeshadow and not look like a hooker? WTH, BB5? Add the red and black striped nail strips and I’m sure I’d spend time locked up for prostitution in the county jail. No disrespect meant to anyone who can carry the look. I’m just not someone who can. But there are some brave souls out there along with some excellent makeup artists who know how to blend, blend, blend and create amazing looks. I’m kind of basic and go with classic styles. Hmm, I wonder if the yellow could be blended to cover my dark circles? I saw an article about using yellow or even red to even out skin color under the eyes. It’s a thought.

    I thought the shampoo and body wash were going to be larger than they were so it’s disappointing but they will be used.

    The mascara isn’t dried out but it is a thin amount. I’m not even sure it would cover my lashes. But I do like the brush so I’ll hang on to that to use with other mascaras whose brushes I don’t like as much.

    Here’s a little makeup tip, reuse your mascara brushes (after washing with soap and water, soaking in alcohol and allowing them to dry) to separate your lashes after putting on a different mascara. It works so much better than those little eyelash/eyebrow combs we’ve used for years.

  10. I am so glad I saw this review before trying the mascara.I don’t like the idea of using a product that old – even if it was sealed, but if I had really like the mascara and wasn’t able to find it in a store? Well, I’d have been pretty upset.

    I had already canceled my subscription to BB5, but if I hadn’t, I probably would have canceled receiving this box. Overall it has been very disappointing. This isn’t the first time I’ve received products that seemed suspiciously old, and I have only subscribed for about 6 months.

  11. I am so glad last month was my last box. What garbage for a box that is higher priced than Ipsy or Birchbox

    • I agree! Don’t understand how they’re in business or can justify sending free samples for $12 a month. Most of the times the boxes don’t even break even with the price anymore.

  12. I’ve been so disappointed with BB5. I foolishly signed up for the annual sub back when they seemed to be sending out more interesting stuff, and then within a few months, the quality declined so noticeably. When I wrote in to complain that my box contained an empty package for one of the items (and that generally I was dissatisfied with the increasingly drugstore selections), the Customer Service Rep just said, “Oh, we’re sorry you’re not happy with the boxes. I’ve gone ahead and set your subscription not to renew at the end of the year, so August will be your last box.” Sounds like they’re used to bad feedback and don’t care much anymore!

  13. The shampoo and body wash were hella disappointing, but they’ll get used on vacation. I got a hard candy eyeshadow duo which I really like, the mascara which I love (I prefer old mascara actually. Brand new stuff is too liquidy and burns my eyes) and I got the nail polish strips in gold cabaret. Not a great box, but everything will get used, so…

    • There are mascaras with wetter formulas than others. Do some of the new but drier mascara formulas still not work to your preference?

  14. I’ve only been a subscriber for a few months but I’m confused. I thought all boxes sent out were identical. My January box had a few of the items in this review but I also had a couple different. Can someone clarify?

  15. I’ve used plenty of older mascara without problems. As long as it hasn’t been opened of course. I get so many in subs and other package gifts etc. that I always seem to have a ton. However sending out some that’s already old is not acceptable. I have been considering getting rid of BB5 but I need a good replacement. Sample Society and I had issues but it looks like that’s imporved this year. Birchbox and I went our seperate ways last year as well. Sigh. Any other suggestions??

    • Melanie, I’ve been happy with Blush Mystery Beauty Box from, Wantable Beauty Box and Glossybox. They’re pricier than BB5, Birchbox and Sample Society but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for.

    • Blush has been sending a lot of repeat items lately, I still love them and subscribe, but not fond of the repeats. Boxycharm is only $21 and seems to do pretty amazing every month. Glossybox is ok, but I can’t stand the late shipping. I just got my 2nd month of Wantable and it’s expensive, but pretty awesome.

  16. my box was different and i loved it!! i got the nail stuff, but mine was different. i got the body wash and mascara. i didnt realize it was old, but it worked great. i also got a hard candy eyeliner and hard candy eye shadow duo. i wouldve been mad if i got your box.

  17. BB5 is really hit and miss these days. I am shocked they’d include such old stock mascara. The oils in the formula will go rancid even unopened after a year or so. As soon as my box arrives, that mascara is going in the trash.

    Another poster above asked about their Lilee box. Well, I wasn’t floored by mine at all. The Jessie & Co “Curated” necklace is cute, but too short for me to wear. (Plus it arrived a tangled mess that took me 20 minutes to sort out.) Also included was ANOTHER Pur-Lisse moisturizer. It was full size, but this brand was EVERYWHERE in 2014. They also weren’t specific about when the free jewelry item I was supposed to receive would arrive. I assumed it was supposed to be in the box, but it wasn’t. Just as I was about to email them about it, they contacted me saying it was shipping separate. I imagine they got an earful about that. That’s the bad (and the ugly).

    The good was the packaging is quite nice, complete with a Lilee box wax seal atop the ribbon. They included ADORABLE rubber mana-“tea” infuser and a package of loose tea from a specialty company to use in it. The Cult nail polish is nice, a pretty light lavender color, and a quality “You’re a Gem” stationary card. So overall, it was a mixed bag. I am willing to give them a few more months to improve their curation.

  18. I got a year subscription last February when they had that crazy deal so I’m only paying about $6 a box and I still don’t feel this subscription is worth it. I have already canceled it so next month is my last. It wasn’t that bad at first (at least worth the $6) and now it’s just pointless. The eye shadow I got was set 39 which are super bright primary colors and everything else are essentially free samples.

  19. My mascara was pretty dry when I attempted to use it the old stock age might be the reason it was like that. It went on eventually and gave me no issues but I dont have sensitive eyes like some people have. I am probably going to toss it now that I heard they arent around.

  20. This is my third and final box with Beauty Box 5. This box was the last straw. Among the items I received was a glitter pink eyeliner and a pink and blue “baked” eye shadow. When I signed up I used a coupon code for October’s box free. I still haven’t received it….

  21. If a mascara has never been used but is old and dried out, you can add several drops of visine to moisten it enough for use. I’ve heard of people using water (or spit, yuck!) but visine is safest for your eyes. Coconut oil would also moisten but would probably cause raccoon eyes within a few minutes of wear.

    Have you tried any of the mascara topcoats that turn any mascara into a waterproof mascara? I saw one on and thought about getting it but haven’t yet. It’s definitely something I want to try.

    I like coastal scents eyeshadows. I received the full palette of nudes (value $39.99) in my Boxycharm box this month, which was pretty cool. I really like them. I received a sample quad from Birchbox last year like the one you received in your BB5 box this month only mine was called Ballet. It was pretty nudes and pinks. I love the size of it since I can easily slip it into my purse or pocket to use on the go if I was running late and didn’t have time to put my makeup on at home.

    I haven’t received my BB5 box yet this month. How long ago did you receive yours? I recently moved and hope that they got my change of address request. They customer service isn’t as speedy or communicative as I’d like.

    I generally like BeautyBox5. Not everything is a winner but sometimes there are real treats and treasures in the box. It might not be something I’d ever think of buying but once I receive it, I find use for it.

    • Anastasia’s waterproof topcoat is awesome! It really works. Put it on lightly, though, or it will cause your lashes to clump. And you will definitely need waterproof makeup remover to remove it. 🙂

  22. Lip Monthly had an Ultraflesh mascara in one of its early boxes too. Much discussion at that time about it being discontinued.

    And if you read the 2nd review on Amazon (the link BB5 gave) it states that they found the mascara right when it got discontinued and they were so happy to find it on Amazon. That was in 2013. Just because the company is still offloading old stock doesn’t mean it is still being “sold” (as in bring currently manufactured). Boo BB5.

  23. This box is my last box of a 3 month Sub to bb5. I didn’t like any of the boxes, they all had cheap products in them. Very dissappointed

  24. Wow… I keep thinking BB5 will get their act together, but it seems that they just don’t care. I’ve never encountered a subscription service as bad as BB5! Every single month they send cheap, discontinued and boring products.

  25. Ultraflesh went out of business several years ago. I was able to get some of their products when sephora was clearing them out for super cheap. But that had to have been atleast three years ago. I wouldn’t use the mascara, as I’m sure it’s well past its expiration.

  26. This box seems disappointing! I was very close to subscribing to this box last month and I’m thankful I didn’t. I’m all for drug store brands but that mascara is questionable!

  27. I’m shocked you’re still subscribing to this sub after the last 3 months. I canceled, December was my last one and this one makes me glad I did. Garnier and the Softsoap you can get as free samples, what’s with BB5 and free samples yet charging $12 for their box? I think it’s weird the coastal scents didn’t come in a box either, I haven’t seen it out of the box like that. The Sally Hansen nail strips are nice though and I do like them. But you can often find them on clearance for a $1. I’ve never heard of the mascara but wouldn’t use it anyone I don’t like get mascaras in sub boxes. I’m dying to know how their Lilee box is going to pan out.

    • I signed up for an annual subscription a while ago, so that’s why I’m still subscribed. Based on the last couple boxes I will not be renewing unless they get their act together. 🙁

  28. This is what BB5 said to a customer on Wed on their FB page comment.

    ” This month’s UltraFlesh Gold Standard mascara by Fusion Beauty was removed from some store shelves but is still retailed by the brand on Amazon here: We unfortunately aren’t selling it in our shop this month, but we also love many of their other mascara formulas online at!”

    • Thanks for sharing that. I am really disappointed in their explanation/response. I do not trust Amazon as a source for confirming makeup is new. I’ve seen plenty of sketchy looking beauty listings from third party vendors. And it isn’t actually being retailed by Fusion Beauty on Amazon – it is being retailed by “beautyseller”

      All in all – something seems wrong about the item being included and how they are handling it. I just emailed them to cancel my subscription.

      • I’m definitely not resubscribing when my year is up. This is too much.

      • I review makeup on Amazon all the time. But I don’t buy it there (I stick with sub boxes, Ulta, sometimes Sephora). I see all kinds of listings for suspected counterfeit items (new boxes of perfumes that were discontinued 10 years ago for reasonable prices, for example — although perfume lasts that long, if it’s really that rare, it will not be at a low price). I rarely buy anything from third party sellers, either. I see a lot of discontinued items. (On the other hand, back when Julep’s India polish was unavailable, you could get it from resellers there…)

        I love Amazon and spend a lot of money there, but you have to know how to read between the lines when it comes to product listings. BB5 either doesn’t understand that or is trying to pull something over on their subscribers. Glad I quit when I did.

    • their exuse is total BS! UltraFlesh was never made by Fusion Beauty. Nor is it being sold by fusion beauty on Amazon. The seller simply names “beautyseller” merely put the name fusion beauty in the title. I would contact the real FusionBeauty and see if they really want BB5 saying they are selling a Sephora exclusive lined product that is 3 years old.

  29. That mascara really makes me wonder about how they acquire their products. I think they are buying close-out lots.

  30. No way would I use that mascara!!! It’s probably so old, they should seriously be ashamed of themselves sending discontinued products. I’m so happy I canceled my bb5 a while ago. Definitely the worst of all the subs

  31. You are right those Sally Hansen strips are discontinued. .. I bought them last year at Ocean State Job Lot a discount store for overstock and discontinued items. Glad I ended my subscription after my year was up, just not inpressed.

  32. I like the Salon Effects Nail Polish Strips, but they are just SO difficult to get off. I would be wary of the mascara, too…

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