Posted by on in Beauty Subscription Boxes, sample society, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Women | 11 comments

Sample Society Beauty Box Review – December 2013

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Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

Sample Society is a monthly beauty subscription box from and Allure magazine. If you’re looking to try out high-end skin care brands and also get some makeup and haircare products too, this is a great box. (They also typically include deluxe size or full size items!)

Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

The Subscription Box: Sample Society

The Cost: $15 a month

The Products: Deluxe and full-size beauty and makeup samples. (Each month you also get a $15 off $50 to use on any order containing a product from any of the brands in your box).

Check out all of my Sample Society reviews and the Beauty Subscription Box Directory!

Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

Each box comes with a card detailing the products included and their full-size prices.

Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

Philosophy Hope in a Jar Night Moisturizer – .4 oz Value $9.60

Alterna Caviar Anti-Aging Dry Shampoo – 3 g Value $1

I know this Alterna sample is super tiny, but it’s one of my favorite items in the box! I’ve sampled it before thanks to subscription boxes, and I love how well it works without any harmful ingredients. I think it’s time for me to buy the full size version!

Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

Ouidad Ultra Nourishing Cleansing Oil – 2.5 oz Value $7.35

REN Hydra Calm Global Protection Day Cream – .5 oz Value $13.20

I’m not sure about this cleansing oil “shampoo” but, but I’ll give it a try!

I also just got this REN day cream in my December Blush Mystery Beauty Box, so at least now I’ll have plenty of product to see if there are any measurable results with daily use!

Sample Society Beauty Box Review - December 2013

Rossorossetto Lipstick in 102 – Value $5?

This lipstick is paraben-free and fragrance-free, but the color might be a little too bold for me! It’s going in the beauty sample gift pile!

Verdict: I paid $15 plus tax for this box and received over $35 worth of beauty products. That’s a good value for most beauty boxes, but I’m used to really really good values from Sample Society! I think this was a good box, and I’ll use just about everything, but nothing has me excited yet. (I think a full sized makeup item would have made me like this box more!)

What did you think of the December Sample Society box?

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 was not a fan of this one and the one before. I have been with them for almost a year now. I decided to cancel right after they shipped the Feb. box to me. I am glad I waited because I LOVED Feb. box. I think maybe in a few months I will give them a try again. I have loved every box… But the 2 boxes I got from them I didn’t like were back to back and so decided to try something else.

  2. This was also my first SS and I was not happy when I opened it, my samples were TINY 🙁 I think the only thing I really liked was the Dry Shampoo but the size does not cut it. Like someone else said “I paid $15 for this?” That’s how I felt, I’m going to give them one more month and then I will cancel if I get another box like December’s.

  3. Well, just got my SS box and this is the first time I have been disappointed in this box. You usually get deluxe sizes in products, but two to these are pretty small. Also, I don’t wear perfume, so the little sample is not my favorite. First “Must Have,” and now SS have let me down this month!

  4. I actually loved this box, the samples were a bit small but they are all something I will use. I got the exact same things listed here and I have to say the lipstick has an AMAZING formula. I’m quite happy with this box.

  5. I shot some sample size comparisons with my iPhone right quick because I guess I’m still more than a little ticked off at what I received.

    The image on top shows the items in my December box as previously mentioned – from left to right in the top image: dermalogica Daily Microfoliant, Alterna Caviar Dry Shampoo, philosophy Hope in a Jar Night Moisturizer, IPKN New York IPKN Moist & Firm BB SPF 02 Light, and Jane Iredale Lash Conditioner

    They are all shown in the size comparisons along with the following samples I had on hand: Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray (1.7 oz), Julep Nail Polish (regular size .27 fl oz), Bobbi Brown BB Cream (.5 fl oz), Lancome Cils Booster XL sample (0.07 fl oz), MAC regular size lipstick tube, and Versace Bright Crystal perfume sampler (0.03 oz)

    The Sample Society products for December have a pink check-mark next to them in the size comparisons. Other than the MAC lipstick, the comparison products were all free GWP. The Jane lash sample still has me shaking my head…

  6. This was my first Sample Society box – and I’m fairly new to boxes and kits. I’ve been with Julep for 3 boxes, Kate Somerville Complexion Perfection for the intro-sample kit and the first 3-month kit, Glossybox for 2 boxes, I just got my first Wantable (holiday) box over the weekend, and my first Ipsy bag is on the way. I basically read a lot of your reviews (and a few others) and joined what I thought would fit me best – kind of a “toss it at the wall and see what sticks”.

    And I have to say, Sample Society is not going to stick.

    My box included samples of Alterna Caviar Dry Shampoo, dermalogica Daily Microfoliant, Jane Iredale Lash Conditioner, Philosophy Hope in a Jar Night Moisturizer, and IPKN New YorkIPKN Moist & Firm BB SPF 02 Light.

    I haven’t had enough kits from any of the companies to say, “Oh my April 2013 box was so much better and had exactly what I wanted…” I have very few examples to go by other than photos / reviews online. But I opened this one and immediately said, “Fifteen bucks for this? They have GOT to be kidding!” Especially for a holiday-season box.

    I’ve had better / larger (and MORE!) samples tossed in my bag at Saks and Nordstrom (for free) than I got in this box. Very disappointing! How can someone possibly use a brand / product long enough with these tiny samples to know if they will work? As mentioned above, I know “Sample” is in the name – but the “deluxe” size of the Caviar Dry Shampoo was laughable at best. And the Jane Iredale Lash Conditioner was in a smaller tube than some of my toddler niece’s play cosmetics sets.

    Your review was spot-on, and the photos are fantastic. However, I do echo the suggestion for showing the scale for some of the products. I just held the Caviar Dry Shampoo bottle up next to a regular-sized Julep polish – and they’re the same in width, the Julep is just a hair taller in height, and the neck of the shampoo is about 1/8″ lower than the neck of the polish – the long pointed lid on the Alterna gives it an optical illusion in size. Unbelievable!

  7. Liz,
    I think you’re doing a fab job of promoting these boxes. I have really enjoyed Sample Beauty for the last year, however, that being said. I have noticed a real decline in the quality and size of their samples. There is virtually no customer service in comparison to other subscription services. I have dry, dry skin it’s as clear as day on my profile. If I receive another sample for combo skin, I will cancel. I have spoken to customer service who as helpful and friendly as they are are simply not well equipped to handle feedback or to make exchanges.

    I subscribe to boxes in order to try the product, before I buy. It is in their best interest to get me the proper product. I hope they are just having a bad couple of boxes–because they used to rock!

  8. This box was horrible. I actually called and canceled yesterday after I received it. I’m all for truth in advertising (they are, after all, SAMPLE society), but you cannot assign values to these tiny bits of product if there’s not enough product in the container to really determine if something will work. The November skin brightener? Awesome. Everything from December? Awful.

    I’m sorry I disagree with your assessment of this box. The pictures you’ve taken are also a bit misleading. I ink it would be helpful, in the true sample boxes, to take a picture of a quarter or a dollar bill with the items to give your readership a realistic idea of what to expect. Although I didn’t get your exact box, I got enough overlap to get an idea of what size the rest of your samples are and they truly are teeny.

    • Thanks for the feedback. I always include the amount of product included when it’s listed (.5 oz, etc), but I’ll try to do a better job at showing scale!

      • I think you do a great job and I hope I didn’t come off terribly. You do post sizes and it’s appreciated. I’m just saying that, had I not received some of these products myself, I wouldn’t have expected to see something so tiny when I got my box.

        It’s not your fault, I felt this box was lacking and I’m just having a hard time finding $15 in value within it. 🙁

        • You didn’t come off terribly at all! Since I have the products in front of me when I’m writing a review, I never really think about how pictures might look if you don’t have the samples in front of you. Remembering scale in future reviews is great feedback. Thank you! 🙂

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