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Allure Beauty Box — 2020 In Review

Megan K.
ByMegan K.Dec 25, 2020 | 15 comments
Allure Beauty Box — 2020 In Review

My Year with Allure Beauty Box

Some of my favorite products, the best brands I saw inside, and my hopes for Allure Beauty Box in 2021.

The Allure Beauty Box is a subscription I always look forward to because the whole thing just feels a little more editorial than some other boxes out there. This is probably because Allure is a legitimate magazine with a whole team of beauty experts who weigh in on the products contained inside this little box! This is a subscription that is a little more like a discovery service than an always full-size experience (kind of like Birchbox) and each month includes a mini booklet with extra details and quotes from the Allure beauty team. To me, this box has always been a little more skincare than makeup focused, but there are often fun makeup surprises as well as items like hair and nail care. It is a nice mix of familiar brands and emerging products from newer names in the beauty sphere. Unlike BoxyCharm and IPSY Glam Bag Plus, not all the items in each box is full size, though there are usually at least a few. This is also a box with a few major changes worth noting in 2020.

Gallery: My 2020 Allure Beauty Box Deliveries

About Allure Beauty Box

The Subscription Box: Allure Beauty Box

The Cost: $23 a month + free shipping. Save with a yearly subscription.

The Products: Deluxe and full-size beauty and makeup samples. Ordering through Allure also means you receive a newsletter with tips, tricks & exclusive promotions like limited-edition boxes, access to members-only virtual events, promo codes, and more!

Ships to: The U.S. and Puerto Rico for free

What Allure Beauty Box Got Right in 2020


Allure Beauty Box is more skincare focused, there was still a wide variety of product types in 2020*. Here is a breakdown:

  • Makeup (including primers and setting sprays): 18
  • Skincare: 48
  • Haircare: 4
  • Tools: 1
  • Nails: 2

*I noticed when I was writing this post that I never received or wrote up the September box. So the totals above are for 11 months of 2020.


The values of my Allure Beauty Boxes were a little harder to quantify here since they had a price change near the end of the year. From January-September, when the box was $15, the value averaged $87.28 per box over those 8 months with a range of $51.29 (low because I couldn't assign value to one lipstick!) to $108.24.

The value for October, November, and December averaged $138.03 with a total of $414.10. The range for these three months was $117.60-$170.95. Again, I did not review September, so a month is missing here!

With the price increase in October came a promise of a more valuable box ($125+) which Allure seems to be delivering on (though December was lean).

Either way, there is certainly value here at the older $15 price point and the new $23/month cost.

What I Would Like to See in 2021

As you can see above, the Allure Beauty Box price increase did come with a value increase. I don't know if it FEELS like a value increase for every subscriber though, just yet. And that is a huge opportunity for Allure in 2021. More full-size options, more creative additions (I love the nail products!!), and even more higher-end brands will certainly take this box there. In terms of price point, this box is just a few bucks cheaper than IPSY Plus and BoxyCharm, and if you just compare these against each other only in the scope of full-size products, Allure comes out at a disadvantage. However, if Allure can continue to send us higher-end and cutting edge products from the best brands, and with all the helpful info behind them, the size differences will matter a whole lot less. I also hope to see more special edition boxes because Allure does an LE box extremely well and the discount you get on these boxes for being a member is substantial.

My Favorite Brands and Products from Allure Beauty Box in 2020

Allure Beauty Box has had a bunch of great brands this year: Dr. Jart+, Kate Somerville, tarte, Ciaté London, Caudalie, and more!

Here are a few of the ones that have stuck with me and that I still use/have repurchased:

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Treatment, 0.25 oz – Estimated Value $10.63 (Buy a full-size 2 oz for $85.00)

From my January Review:

I love this stuff. LOVE. I was gifted an entire tube last year and it quickly became one of my favorite exfoliators. I usually try to avoid super grainy exfoliation products because they drag and scratch my skin, but this silica formula feels more like a super fine grit that doesn’t irritate my skin like so many others out there. It also has lactic acid, which is another exfoliator, though it doesn’t have a texture. Oh! And fruit enzymes! I like to apply it in the shower, coating my face with a thin layer and rubbing in circles for about 30 seconds. You can then wash it off or leave it on for an additional 2 minutes. It is important to not leave this stuff on too long, because it is potent. Expect to see smoother, radiant skin that feels like velvet after that final rinse and be sure to follow up with your favorite moisturizer.

Akar Pure Lip Restoration, 7 ml – FULL SIZE! Retail Value $30.00

From my January Review:

I am always on the lookout for great lip treatments in the winter, and this is a new one to me! Plus, it’s multipurpose? I am in! It has a heavier balmy texture, but it wasn’t what I would consider to be hard, meaning you won’t have to dig into your pot to get enough to be useful! It feels great on the lips, adding much-needed hydration and smoothness. The main power players in the ingredient list are almond and castor seed oil, with a nice touch of beeswax. I found that it also worked wonders for dry patches on my face (when used sparingly!), dry knees, and dry elbows. The cheerful red tin also looks super cute in my purse.

NYX Pro Powder Brush – Retail Value $17.00

From my February review:

I am completely aware of the fact that I am now a brush hoarder. I am not quite at 100 brushes, but I am embarrassingly close. Am I sick of brushes? Nope. I freaking love them. I think this is because I also have a painting background, so I have always collected brushes for that purpose and this feels like an extension of that sort of collecting, but for my face instead of a canvas. Even with all of my brushes, this is my first NYX brush and I am very impressed. I love the solid plastic handle and matte black ferrule. The bristles are synthetic and feel so soft and wonderful against my skin. They also grab up the right amount of product and diffuse powders across my skin beautifully. Did you know if you buy these brushes from the NYX site you can have them custom engraved for a $2 upcharge? I love that! Not that I need more brushes, but… I kind of need an ‘MSA Megan’ brush, right? Or three?

Mamonde Rose Water Toner, 0.84 fl oz – Estimated Value $2.29 (Buy a full-size 8.45 fl oz for $23.00)

From my March review:

I love anything from this brand, but I do wish this sample had been bigger! The actual full size is more than affordable though, which is some consolation. I like to pour a little bit of this rose-scented liquid into my hands (before my day cream or night cream) and pat it into my face. It is a refreshing moisture boost to any routine and I always find it especially calming.

VDL Lumilayer Primer, 0.16 fl oz – Estimated Value $5.07 (Buy a full-size 1.01 fl oz version for $32.00)

From my May review:

Again, totally not wearing a ton of makeup these days. Why do I still love this primer? Because it has this gorgeous shine inside that totally diffuses light on my face to create a soft blue effect. It reminds me a lot of MAC’s Strobe Cream, but somehow more radiant. This is a fresh-faced dream. That is not to say the radiance wouldn’t also benefit your full face look! It is the perfect first step for a glassy skin look.

STARSKIN 100% Camellia Nourishing & Brightening 2-Step Oil Sheet Mask – Retail Value $11.37

From my June review:

This is one of my favorite sheet masks so I am thrilled to see it inside this month’s Allure box. This was actually the mask that changed the way I use sheet masks. Let me explain: this was the first mask where the first step was to apply 100% camellia oil to your face before applying the mask itself. Genius! Basically, oils alone have trouble penetrating drier skin. Add in something with water? They work together to give your products deeper skin penetration! So the combo of an oil and a sheet mask with water is a dream team! I basically apply some sort of oil under most masks I use now, unless I am trying them out for a review and want to see how they perform alone. This is a great before bed mask because it does feel a little heavy, but dang my skin glows in the morning!

Dashing Diva Gloss Ultra Shine Gel Palette – Retail Value $8.00

From my June review:

My nails are just terrible. Professional gel polish doesn’t even stick to them for more than a week and though an acrylic overlay did manage to add length without peeling, it is just too much $$$ and work for me right now. I usually just end up repolishing every 3 or 4 days with normal polish. These stickers were intriguing because they are like a gel polish sticker, and application was easy! First, wipe your nails down with alcohol or acetone. Then, simply pick out the correct size for your nail (in my case I used all the small ones pretty fast), apply, then buff the excess off with the included file. My nails are so small and short I can easily get double the use here if I cut the individual nail covers in half! These did end up lasting longer than regular nail polish normally would and the nail art aspect was adorable, so I enjoyed these a lot.

Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Calming Gel Cream, 5 mL – Estimated Value $4.80 (Buy a full-size 50 mL for $48.00)

From my July review:

I am obsessed with the Dr. Jart+ Cica line. It does wonders for my red face and dry skin! I tend to prefer the cream version of this product, but this gel is perfect for summertime and/or oilier skin. There is so much goodness inside this tube and this formula is a great balance between acne control, calming, hydrating, and anti-redness/soothing. The star for me is the Tiger Grass because it is a botanical that has been used in folk medicine for years to help with skin abrasions, burns, and other minor wounds. It is also great for eczema! As expected, it applies like a dream with a light and cooling sensation that absorbs fast. If you haven’t ever tried any Cica products, I am so excited for you!

Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum, 40 mL – Full Size! Retail Value $39.00

From my July review:

I really love this serum for a few different reasons. The biggest is that it contains ingredients that help with many of my own facial concerns: large pores, uneven texture, and dryness. Those ingredients include niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, adenosine, beta-glucans, and more! This formula is also alcohol- and fragrance-free, making it a great option for more sensitive skin. The texture is a medium weight clear gel that readily absorbs into skin without leaving a film or residue behind and layers really well with my favorite moisturizers. I somehow used half a bottle of this last year (which is impressive since I use so many things) and it totally made a difference in my skin in terms of texture and pore size.

Static Nails Liquid Glass Lacquer in ‘Irene’, 12 mL – Retail Value $16.00

From my October review:

I have been wanting to try out Static Nails polish for months now, and ‘Irene’ was one of the colors I was choosing from. (The other was ‘Mocha‘. I swoon.) I have nails that polish just doesn’t like to stick to. Even a salon gel polish lasts maybe a week without starting to peel up! It is really frustrating. While this still didn’t last that long, it did last 3 days without any chipping or peeling, which is basically a lifetime on my nails. Add in that the formula stays super glossy? Winning! This color required 2 coats but it was worth it. The nude pink shade is pretty darn close to my actual skin tone but the effect is chic, especially since my nails are stubby. I think I will be adding ‘Mocha’ to my cart. I am pretty impressed!

Changes to Allure Beauty Box in 2020

Allure Beauty Box had a pretty significant price increase in October 2020. It increased from $15 monthly to $23 a month. With this increase came new features:

  • 6 or more products in every box, valued at $100+ (previously 5 or more products valued at $70+)
  • At least 3 full-size products in every box (previously 2)
  • Exclusive limited-time members-only discounts
  • Member discounts on limited-edition boxes.
  • Exclusive access to Allure events

More details? We have you covered here.

Who do I recommend Allure Beauty Box for?

Allure Beauty Box is for anyone who already knows and loves the Allure brand and even those who are new to it! This is a box that is a great choice for most any skincare addict who wants to try out the latest and greatest, with a few surprises thrown in. This is also a box that is going to be a better fit for a subscriber who doesn't expect all full-size items.

What were your fave Allure Beauty Box products this year? Let me know in the comments!

Did you have a favorite box this year? Show it some love by casting a vote in The 2021 Subscription Box Awards!

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Megan K.
Megan K.
I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.

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I am loving these year in review posts! Would you please review Chic beauty box? I love them and wish they had more coverage. I got YSL and NARS from them. They do a high low thing.

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I opted into the annual membership when they announced the price increase. That came out to about $13 and change for each box for the year. While the Allure beauty box has made me more aware of taking care of my skin, i truly wish there were more different make up items (i have so many primers and highlighters, its not funny). Additionally, when i signed up for the annual subscription, i received a separate beauty box as a gift that was PACKED with makeup and skin products. At first, i was so excited for them but a lot of the eye makeup items in the gift box caused a lot of irritation issues. So, for me, this box each month is hit or miss. Yeah, there were products from Kate Somerville, Peach and Lily, a number of others i’ve been eyeballing for a while. But the downside is a lot of products that dont fit my needs (i can honestly expect a sheet mask in every single box that i can find at walmart) i most likely will not be renewing my subscription when it ends (unless it turns amazing)

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Amanda Jackson

I agree absolutely that the box used to be good and at a $15 price point I rarely put much thought into it. At the $23, though I do. And … I’m not impressed,!

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USPS rates have increased and will be increasing more. I understand when a subscription needs to raise their rates. I put together a small monthly subscription package of shipping supplies for online resellers. I have just 100ish subscribers and this past year has taught me so much.
My fav product sent from Allure was the sample of Bausch+Lomb Lumify. I adore that it whitens the eyes and have been buying it for months. My second favorite was just sent as a bonus and is the AmorePacific Time Response for eyes. It’s amazing and I just bought more.
Allure has allowed me to stop buying most of my skincare and makeup. I can use up the smaller products they send and only buy those that wow me. I locked in at the lower price for 2021.

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I absolutely love allure and will keep my subscription. Don’t think people understand that the UPS shipping has gone way up. Which causes the box to increase in price.

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I really like this feature! With so many products out there (so so many,) it’s great to see a whittled down list of favorites.

Despite the justified criticism of the price increase and lack of deliverance on a new, better box, Allure spoilers are the first I look for. Ipsy and Boxycharm seem to play up the same products each and every month and are way too make up heavy for me.

I don’t know this for certain, but if you have an annual subscription and skip a month, you might want to make sure your subscription is “reinstated” for the month you want to begin again. A bizarre conversation I had with an Allure customer service rep made me believe this might be true. I guess I will see in February!

Megan, not that you need more things to do, but I would love to see a round up of your personal skincare faves. I’ve learned so much from all of your reviews and really trust your judgement with ingredients and products alike ☺️

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Megan K.

Haha there is always more to do Snow! I can see if I can get this added to our content plans. I def have opinions! I appreciate and value your trust! <3

Good looking out with those Allure tips. I know they will help other readers.

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Sharon in SE TX

I started using Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm (September) and I don’t get pimples and blackheads anymore. I also liked the AHC Essential Real Eye Cream For Face (May) and Eva NYC Man Magic 10-in-1 Primer (April).

I canceled when the price increased. I don’t feel comfortable paying for beauty boxes in advance and now I’m glad I didn’t because the products don’t interest me as much.

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I was so thankful to get the Eva 10-1in a box because it was on my list to try. I almost bought it at Costco, but I glad I didn’t because I hated it🤣. This is one time that a product was a fail for me but Allure allowed me to try it in a much smaller size!

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Sharon in SE TX

SBR, I felt the same about the Erno Laszlo Soap. I had been wanting to try it for a long time and when I finally did, the scent gave me a headache. Someone suggested using it as a spot treatment, but after holding on to the bar for a few months, I threw it away.

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Yes. January will be my last Allure box…forever.

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Anyone else wish they returned to their old model of fewer products at a cheaper price point?

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Yes, I wish they would do just that. I actually cancelled. December was my last box. I am not impressed in the least bit and do not wish to spend $23.00 for the same sort of selection of items, as they curated at the $15.00 price point. It’s a shame… I was with them for four years.

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Yes, most definitely. I have not seen the value of the products since the price hike come even close to reaching the price point of the $23 increase. I’ve been sorely disappointed. I opted out of one month when I saw the items in the box. I’m not going to pay for junk, especially small samples. Please!
I’ve talked to a lot of people who’ve already canceled because they don’t see the value anymore. Maybe Allure will listen to their customers ~ maybe not?

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Yeah, unfortunately it’s not happening

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