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Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review – August 2013

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Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

So, let me start this review by saying that the original Total Beauty Mystery Collection was a mixed bag for me. While I liked a lot of the items, and I thought the value was good, I was disappointed in the fact they included a wine coupon/gift card as a part of the value of the box. This irked me especially because I live in PA, and I can’t even ship wine to my house if I wanted to use the gift card.

Anyway, in the description of their new Mystery Box they stated:

β€œWorried about doubling up on items from your last mystery collection purchase? Don’t worry, this collection has a whole new range of full size and deluxe sample items valued at over $75 for just $26. All products, no gift cards.”

That made me super excited because it sounded like they really listened to the feedback on the first box! Unfortunately, while this box didn’t have a wine card, it still ended up being a mixed bag for me.

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

The Box: Total Beauty Collection Mystery Box

The Cost: $22.10 with coupon code MYSTERY1 plus free shipping

The Products: 7+ full size products from past collections, plus 3 samples with a value of over $75

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

Revlon ColorStay Nail Polishes in Trade Winds, Sunburst, Jungle, and Seashell – Value $8 Each

I actually really like all these colors. I know they are from the Spring/Summer season, but they look like good fall colors to me.

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Pink Lemonade and Sorbet – Value $7.50 each

Revlon ColorStay 16 Hour Eye Shadow in Sea Mist – Value $7.50

I actually already received each of these products in the Revlon Total Beauty Collection from a few months ago. I ended up really liking the lip butters, so these will go to use, but I was a little bummed to see that this box wasn’t so much a mix of products from various collections, but more of a Revlon mystery box.

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

Natural Olive Cream Light Formula – .35 oz

Chella Exfoliating Cleanser – 2 ml

I love the Chella highlighter pencil I received in my June Ipsy bag, so I have high-hopes for this cleanser!

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

NYX Roll On Shimmer – Value $3

NYX Color Lip Balm -Value $3

Honest Co Lip Calm – Value $4

(The NYX products were the bonus products they added to this box). The Honest Company is seriously one of my favorite brands ever, and I use their lip balm every day. I also seem to lose lip balm nearly everyday, so this will go to use very soon!

Total Beauty Mystery Collection Review - August 2013

Ferro Cosmetics Samples in Terra Cotta and Suzie’s Glow – Value $4

I have nearly mastered opening up these Ferro cosmetic sample containers! I really like that the Ferro brand is all-natural mineral makeup, and both of these colors have a nice shimmer to them. I will definitely use these bronzers!

Verdict: Like I said in the beginning of this review, this box is a mixed bag for me – I think in part because I was so excited for it and I feel a little let down. I guess I expected the 7 full-size products to not all be Revlon products. It also seems like all the mystery boxes are exactly the same, which isn’t my expectation for a “mystery box.” Β At the same time, I’ll use most of the items in this box, and the items are worth more to me than what I paid ($22.10).

So to keep this review more constructive than negative, here’ is my advice for a better mystery box from Total Beauty Collection in the future:

1) Box variation! Part of the fun of mystery boxes is that you may get an incredible value box, but at the very least you know you are getting a $75 box. Having different values and items in each box makes it more interesting and truly a mystery!

2) One awesome spoiler – It would be great if they had a new full-size item that would be guaranteed in each box. Ideally this product would be close to (or more than!) the value of the box, so it’s easy to justify buying the mystery box!

3) Product variation – Lots of different products from many different brands means that even if I don’t like one brand, I won’t be disappointed in the box.

What did you think of the Total Beauty Mystery Collection this time? Any other advice you would give Total Beauty to make their mystery boxes better? (Or if you were totally happy with this box – that’s great too!). I plan on reaching out to Total Beauty with this feedback, so I’ll make sure to include your thoughts as well!

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. If you buy something, MSA may earn an affiliate commission. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.


  1. I totally agree with your recommendations. And if I want Revlon, I’ll go to the drugstore (with coupons!) and get it for cheap. When I order a beauty box of any kind, I’m not hoping for drugstore brands. I don’t think I’ll be spending money on Total Beauty Mystery Boxes unless something changes.

  2. I got this same box as you – down to the colors. I was really disappointed. All the Revlon and so much nail polish (I actually don’t even use nail polish).

    This is the 3rd Total Beauty box that I’ve gotten in a row that has been disappointing. The worst part – the Ferro products. I’ve had 3 TBC boxes in a row with this same powder and it has been exploded all over the box all three times. All of my products covered in it. I haven’t even tried to open the containers because of the mess in the plastic bag and all over my boxes. I am tempted to just trash those Ferros because they are such a mess.

    As for the other products, I love the idea of giving them to a shelter. But, first, I have to give some to my 9-year old niece. She has seen my boxes and asked me if I had any make up/beauty/bath products I can give her for fun. So, I think the Revlon products are something fun a 9-year old would appreciate for dress up.

    Those darn Ferros are just a huge turn off to me though and really have ruined Total Beauty for me. Such a mess!

  3. I expressed my displeasure with this box on the announcement post for the boxes. I likened them to discount bin products at the local drugstore. I didn’t understand when purchasing that the two boxes contained the same exact products (I confuse easily, lol!) and was even more bummed that I bought two boxes that I disliked. I contacted Total Beauty after I received the boxes and expressed my disappointment in the boxes. I suggested what I wanted to see happen and they replied swiftly and cordially. They refunded the amount of the small box (my suggestion) and then went a step further and refunded a small amount of the larger box. I am extremely satisfied with their customer service policies and representative. I wish the situation had not of occurred that lead me to contact them, of course, but pleased with the outcome. I wanted to share this follow up with everyone to be fair to Total Beauty. I am unsure if I will tempt fate and try again but I no longer consider it to be on the absolutely never again list.

  4. I just got mine today and the Ferro powder somehow got EVERYWHERE! Ugh πŸ™

  5. So relieved I didn’t buy this box – the eye shadows, lip butters and one of the nail polishes are all the exact same — right down to the colors — as the ones I got in a previous Revlon beauty box.

    I’ll still keep an eye on Revlon Total Beauty Boxes, though – when they’re good, they’re really good, but when they’re bad, they’re ugh. I have faith that they’ll still have some decent ones in the future.

  6. It’s funny to see the comments of all the “I’m bummed that I bought the box” and I, myself…am actually “bummed that I missed the box”! All of the Revlon doesn’t bother me, perhaps, it’s because as another post above about just starting a makeup collection. After almost 20 years of not being able to buy products like these, my recent stash has come from 2 months of trying box subs & mystery subs so my first thought when I saw this was, “oh wow, look at all the goodies!” Of course, it’s sold out now! I would like to shout out a huge “kudos” to the poster above who is donating their unused items to a women’s shelter. I for one, can vouch how appreciated those ladies will be since most of them are faced without having such luxuries and having to start their lives over!

  7. I wasn’t that happy with the box either. A lot of nail polish and lipstick. I would have liked a better variety. I do like the lip butters but I already had two of them. πŸ™ I get the Glossybox and I love it. I use to get the Birchbox but it started getting less and less each month so I cancelled it.

  8. I know right? I got the exact same box as you right down to the colors; and I really thought this was a mixed product bag. Plus I kind of thought it would be awesome because of all the complaints last time. And it says nothing in the description about “drugstore” products. I usually don’t buy them at the drugstore and I definitely wouldn’t pay for them in a mystery box!
    Looking at the past collections it looks like a little bit of everything. But everything minus bonuses was Revlon. So I don’t feel like that gives me an adequate chance to try a variety of products for a discounted price. To me, that’s the meaning of a beauty sub box. I’ll probably go to customer service but has anyone said if they’re any good? Can’t stand dealing with horrible CS… Sigh, at least it’s not monthly so I don’t have to bother canceling it.

  9. This box is a complete disappointment. I purchased because they said there were no duplicates and no gift cards. I’m sure this is my last purchase from them. Two bad boxes in a row and its time to move on. I went and subed at Glossybox with the discount codes and e-bates for a year of great boxes. A much better deal and a better surprise in each box. I am donating this box and any extra unwanted items from all my subs to a domestic violence or women’s homeless shelters. They are always thrilled with my donations.

    • That’s really great. I wish more people did that. People post things like “I hated this product and it’s going straight in the garbage.” all the time. But that’s a great way to get rid of unwanted items since just because you don’t want them, doesn’t mean someone else wouldn’t love them! I need to also look into doing that. Honestly it hadn’t even occurred to me, but I’m really passionate about being active in charities. Thanks for your kindness and new idea πŸ™‚

  10. I’m new to the whole subscription box thing and this was the first one that I received. I love it! Granted, I was just looking at nail polishes and I am in dire need of updating all my makeup so I’m not very picky about brands. I’m just happy to get a new look. Love this blog BTW.

  11. Man now I’m sad I bought this box… =(

  12. Ugh now I regret buying this box. I already have all of the Revlon products they included. I wished for another small bottle of thst hair oil they had in the last box.

  13. This is my first total beauty mystery collection and I was really happy, 13 items for $22! I got the same exact box you did. I’m keeping the Chella cleanser and olive skin cream (which is awesome!) for myself and giving the box to my teenage daughter as one of her birthday gifts, I think she will really enjoy it. Nail polish and lip butters are her favorites, and she loves all NYX as well. The colors were all interesting and newish, no weird unwearable stuff. I’m hoping she doesnt want the honest lip balm and gives it to me but that wont happen LOL.
    BTW, if you got the Naked Wines gift card (I got in my Goodies box several months ago)and you live in a state that doesn’t allow it, you can still buy it as a gift and send it out of state. I used it as a houseguest gift, got six bottles for $20 including shipping.

  14. Whoops! I accidentally hit send before I finished or edited my mistakes. Anyway was just going to add except for the Olive day cream & Chella cleanser ( I got the goats milk cream and a Chella mask ) our products were the same ( oh & my nyx rollerball was silver but that’s good bc I have the pink/mauve. My honest co lip balm was in lavender mint. Now THAT was an awesome product! It might even semi-convert me from my Korres lip butter obsession) So yeah, nail polish & more of those #%*^ ferro powders in the same 2 shades ( I like them but 2 shades over & over? Really?)aside I liked the other stuff. It was a meh box for me and I too think they should have added the new shampoo & conditioner and more Pacifica! Since you will be passing along your feelings to them and adding ours I wanted to give you a detailed breakdown of why I wasn’t happy. I’d be very appreciative of you adding my thoughts in your communication.
    Thanks & sorry this was all so long!

  15. Oh disappointment how do I count the way? First of all, even though I am “relatively” young, 43 I had a stroke 2 years ago. I’m much better, you’d never know just looking at me. I do have brain deficits ( like repeating myself w/out knowing & rambling like I’m doing now πŸ™‚ ) Anyway, I brought that up because while I can use my left hand for a lot of things putting on nail polish isn’t one of them. The small grip & controlled movements I just can’t do even though my O.T. worked hard on that with me because I have naturally strong nails & LOVED keeping them always pretty, polished & shaped. Wow! Way off track! Ok so this box was a huge disappointment because of all the polishes. Plus, I admit a bit of an Ouch for what I’ve lost. Granted TBC had no way of knowing that but it made the box a bust for me and I can’t be the only one. While they couldn’t anticipate my difficulties many can’t wear polish to work or just don’t wear any. I feel like making a mystery box that heavy in one type of product without at least a hint is already setting a large group of customers up for disappointment AND setting up not very great goodwill or word of mouth for TBC themselves. After the last mystery box they needed to hit this one out of the park. They didn’t. Overall I am ok with the other items. Instead of the

  16. I am so glad I didn’t purchase this box. I noticed in their description that they said not to worry about doubling up on products from their last Mystery Box and I see 3 items that came in Liz’s box that were in my last Mystery Box…so, I’m sure I would have doubled up for sure.
    In my opinion they should have included Pacifica products and generous sample sizes of that new shampoo and conditioner that they are selling in their other boxes.
    There is no way I’ll purchase anything else from them not knowing what I’m getting right off the bat.

  17. This box was horrible, honestly. Almost everything in it I could have bought at my local drugstore. That’s not what I was expecting at all and I don’t think I’ll grab any more of these boxes in the future.

  18. I posted my review in the comments of the announcement blog post, not here. So I will just say I do agree with your reviews and suggestions. I was very disappointed in the box.

  19. Ugh. I’m disappointed that this is what’s coming. I wouldn’t have bought a box of Revlon, even for a “bargain” $22, if I’d have known that’s what it was. I won’t be purchasing again unless there’s a spoiler that looks like something exciting/I might actually want.

  20. I am actually very bummed to get this box now. I feel that for a mystery box I would rather have a selection of products. I personally do not care for revlon products, and I could just go to any drug store and purchase them, so to get a box full of one brand is very disappointing.

  21. I also am so disappointed in this box. I can get Revlon products at any drugstore so not very mysterious. I don’t think I will purchase from them again.

  22. Thank you so much for posting your thoughts and pictures of this mystery box!
    I was really afraid when I purchased this box because this was my first time buying anything from any subscription program and I saw how a lot of people disliked the last mystery box but when I saw that they said this beauty box will not contain the gift card and won’t be replicas of the previous box. I purchased it and I am a bit disappointed because the full size products are all Revlon but happy because when the Revlon Collection came out, I didn’t get a chance to purchase it!
    Thank you so much and I’m looking forward to receiving my box!

    • Yay – glad you will be getting to try the Revlon Collection! πŸ™‚

      • Thank you and I’m excited! I’m a giant fan of the lip butters! πŸ™‚

  23. I am so disappointed in my box-I got basically the same thing as you did. I won’t purchase from them again.

  24. Glad I didn’t get it. Definitely seems like a Revlon box! Don’t need anymore Ferro messy powder. Thanks for the review. I like your suggestions.

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