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Birchbox Curated Box Review + Coupon – March 2017

Liz Cadman
ByLiz CadmanMar 11, 2017 | 41 comments


3.7 overall rating
659 Ratings | 190 Reviews

Every month, Birchbox lets subscribers pick between a curated box (all samples revealed) or a single sample choice and be surprised by the rest of the items. This review is of the curated box. (Birchbox subscribers can currently buy this box for $10 in the Birchbox shop!)


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


The Subscription Box: Birchbox

The Cost: $10 a month (get one month free and $10 to spend in the shop with an annual subscription!)

FLASH DEALWhile supplies last, use coupon code TWOFORONE to get a FREE extra Birchbox with your first month of a Birchbox subscription! The box design—and the goodies inside—will be a surprise.

The Products: Beauty and lifestyle samples selected by the Birchbox team.

Ships to: US, FranceSpain and the UK

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


Each box comes with a card detailing the items included and some tips on how to use them.



Now onto the items!


R+Co Dallas Thickening Spray – 50 ml Value $5.80

I’ve loved the other R+Co products I’ve sampled from Birchbox (fab scents), so I was excited to try this. Plus, I will always say yes to more hair volume!

This isn’t a life-changing volumizer, but it still is pretty impresive. It smells lovely, it didn’t weigh down my hair at all, and it added texture, but didn’t make my hair feel sticky. (I could still run my fingers through my hair easily.)


Clarins Hydra-Essentiel – 5 ml Value $2.80

This cream is designed to hydrate skin, and it does a great job of providing moisture while absorbing quickly. The only negative for me is the scent – it’s a pretty heavily fragranced cream.


Arrow Boost Color Enhancing Lip Balm – FULL SIZE! Value $14


I’ve sampled this lip balm before and it is great. (It’s from Birchbox’s own ARROW line – multi-tasking products that are vegan, paraben-free, cruelty-free, and gluten-free.)

The formula goes on clear, but it gives you a pink tint color once it is on. The formula is moisturizing and gives your lips a healthy looking shine, too!


Benefit The Porefessional – 3 ml Value $5

This primer is a classic I’ve sampled many times before. The formula feels super smooth on my skin and does a great job of temporarily filling in pores so that they look invisible.


Davines OI All in One Milk – 50 ml Value $11.85

This is a post-shower leave-in treatment. (Birchbox actually recommends stepping out of the shower between shampoo and conditioner to apply this, but I did it post conditioner and still loved the results.) It left my hair soft and non-greasy at all!

And it came with a matching set of shampoo and conditioner:


Davines OI Conditioner – 12 ml Value $1.70

Davines OI Shampoo – 12 ml Value $1.25

Normally I’m not a big fan of foil packets in subscription boxes, but these are a bonus in the curated box that I wasn’t expecting, and I appreciate that Birchbox included both the shampoo and conditioner.

Their formulas are also paraben and sulfate free, too!

Verdict: This box has a value of about $42 – that’s great for a $10 beauty box. In most cases, the curated box has a good value, so I recommend always picking it if that’s a priority for you. The only item that wasn’t a great fit for me was the Clarins, so I’m really happy with this box!

What do you think of the March Birchbox? Did you pick a curated box or a sample?

Birchbox ($15 per month) was one of the very first beauty subscription boxes—we’ve been reviewing it since 2012! Each month, subscribers get a new mix of 5 beauty samples, such as makeup, skincare, haircare, and fragrance items. Birchbox lets you choose whether you’d like a box of items picked just... read more.
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!

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!
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mine was pretty good. This is the first box tha i received in my life and it is pretty awsome. I really love Davines, so for me the sample of Shampoo and conditioner+ milk was amazing. My hair was shiny and soft, the scent is really good. The other thing that I received with this box was a Tocca parfum (citric one love it!), a nude sparkling eyshadow. A moisturizing cream of Khiels and Real Chemistry peeling. The peeling was MARVELOUS! I am very happy with my box, and still waiting for my Ipsy one, tho


I got a non curated box and got a good box. I got the Arrow eyeliner which was my sample choice,Dr Jart micelluar cleanser,Evo dry shampoo,Kiehls serum and Oribe styling cream. I love the eyeliner as it really does brighten. I love everything by Dr Jart and Oribe and so far the serum seems pretty decent. Dry shampoo while not super exciting is something I use all the time so I always appreciate getting more.


I bought this for $10 on top of my normal Birchbox (I picked one thing for sample choice on that one, the eyeliner). I thought this was a good curated box.

Elle Em

I forgot to make my sample choice (so annoyed with myself), and I ended up with a really disappointing box. 🙁

I received a reject leftover Beauty Crop PBJ Smoothie Stick (didn’t everyone get one of those last month?) and the product was completely loose and falling out of the stick. I am debating if it’s even worth it to report to BB or if I should just toss it.

I also received:

– Number 4™ Super Comb Prep & Protect conditioning mist (I am drowning in hair products!)
– COOLA® Classic Face SPF 30 Cucumber Moisturizer
– Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate (I am actually excited to try this because it has great reviews and it’s such a high-end brand, though I might actually give it to my mom to try.)
– Coastal Scents® Revealed Smoky Palette sample

Am I the only one who gets irrationally angry at the miniscule samples by Coastal Scents? Ugh. You can barely even fit a fingertip in those samples (and I have small fingers)!


I also got the Coastal Scents Smokey Palette sample. I’m new to birchbox and didn’t know their box reveals are of the full size items and not the actual sizes you’ll be receiving, and was over the moon when I thought I was getting a full size palette lol.

For those interested in example non-curated boxes:

– Real Chemistry Fresh-Start Foaming Cleanser
– Coastal Scents Revealed Smoky Palette sample
– amika Silken Up Dry Conditioner – 5.1 oz.
– Davines OI All in One Milk
– COOLA® Mineral Face SPF 30 Unscented Matte Tint


when do we get to mae the choice between boxes? and where will it be on the site or app to do it? i keep looking for april but havent seen it yet


It’s usually pretty close to the end of the month (27th?). They email you that you can now make your choice, with a link directly to the right page. They let their Aces members go first, then the rest of us. Only once, when I got to make my choice, 2 out of 3 of the options were sold out (to Aces members), so I got to choose one or the curated box.

If you want to check the site to see if choices are available, I think you just click your boxes.


You know what makes me upset and discouraged from continuing with my Birchbox signature, other than the size of the samples is the fact that I indicated more than 20 people to sign the box at Birchbox, and what did I get when I turned ACE? A very small sample. Another thing that bothers me is to receive an email saying that I earned 100 points for a friend’s referral and when I look at the account I received 50 points, this makes people confused, or it’s 50 or it’s 100, the site can not say a thing And the email show another.


I liked the Pore professional, even though the sample was really small. I also like the hair volumizer. As for the mint Arrow lip balm, I wasn’t impressed. I didn’t really notice enhanced color in my lips. It was basically chapstick with mint on me.
I just wish they included more facial products with their samples and not so many hair products.


I restrained for this box. Loved everything! Already finished the face cream.


According to the Davines website (as well as at Barneys) the All in One Milk ACTUALLY sells $17.00 for the 50ML bottle!!! So you’re getting an even higher value w/this box!!! WOW w/ the fully lippy. Has anyone tried yet? I won’t for quite a while (or even try–have to keep things fresh for when I actually do use 🙂


I requested the curated box and received completely different items. I emailed the customer support and they confirmed the wrong box was sent to me. Fortunately, they are sending me the correct box, which shows that at least they do try to correct their mistakes, I guess.


I requested the curated box and received completely different items too! I didn’t realize it until this morning when I saw the curated box review. . . I hope I can still get the curated box. I’m currently getting the message that they are looking into it and will get back to me due to a large number of inquiries. I guess I’m not alone. . .


My box was not what was stated. Did not choose sample choice


Liz, you are so cute! I don’t think the directions for the milk hair spray meant
after shampoo get out of the shower, apply, and get back in the shower to condition your hair. I think they are just saying after you shampoo and get out of the shower apply the spray instead of conditioner. 😀


That’s good. I actually came to the comments section because I can’t imagine people wanting to get out of the shower and then get back in.


I;ve been sub’d to BirchBox since last summer. They’ve always revealed what I will receive until this month. They say that my box has been shipped, but when I go to my page it says they’re still working on my box.

Is anyone else having this problem?


Same thing! I thought it was just me. It’s still not showing what I’m getting. I’m cancelling BB after this month, anyway. Other than Ipsy, I’ve decided that I’d rather spend a little bit more and get better subs like BoxyCharm and BeautyFix, anyway.


yes, i had this problem too. I even contacted them because usually BB was first to receive out of my 14 boxes (shame shame). I logged in today and it is finally showed what I am getting. I wish I did not see it 🙁


Excellent curated box this month. It was great to try some well known brands. My hair looks great after using my samples, I just don’t care for the scent. I love the lip balm and the face cream was hydrating, just what I needed!


I received my curator box today and was very happy to say the least. This is my 2nb box and it was a drastic improvement over the disappointing first box that I received several weeks ago. I will have to remember Liz’s trick about selecting the curator over the sample box.


I LOVED this curated box. I purchased it as a separate box and am getting a mystery box for my subscription. The hair products in this box were complete hits and really on point. So happy with this curated set. Completely makes up for the blah-ness of the February box!


I also ordered the mystery box for my subscription. I received the

Davines All in one Milk – tried yesterday and fell in love! Hair is glossy and soft, large sample bottle.

(bonus foils of the matching Davines shampoo and conditioner) one time use, but I really liked them

Coola BB cream – this felt and smelled like Dr. Brandt primer so with the tiny amount of product in the larger tube, I will use up day 2 as a primer.

Amika dry conditioner – small can that will go in my travel bag

Coastal Scents duo eye shadow sample from the revealed smoky eye quad. Both colours are shimmer, but wearable light highlight tones. Tiny sample though, comparable to those The Balm sends!

And finally, last sample was Real Chemistry’s Fresh-Start Foaming Cleanser. Used this in the shower, works great at leaving my face squeaky clean. Nothing stand out, however.

All in all, happy with the mystery…tried some products I would never have thought to look for — Coola BB cream and Real chemistry were a meh for me, the Davines was a huge win.


I got the same box, except I only received one coastal scents eye shadow sample instead of the duo! Is this what I should expect of a typical box? I chose curated because that’s what everyone usually suggests. This is my second box and it kind of made me sad opening it. I understand that sample sizes are supposed to be small because well they’re samples, but opening my box felt super discouraging.


This is my second month of BB and the first time I was able to pick my choice. I picked this box and I love it!!

I wanted another lip balm so I decided it was cheaper to order another of these boxes and I did.

gretchen talton

I’m new to all of this…. I just subscribed to Ipsy Birch Walmart and Monthly. I haven’t received any of them yet but I wanted to ask…. what is curator boxes? The box that shows on my account has: Kiehls cream, Real Chemistry peel, Davines milk, Davines shampoo, Davines conditioner, Coastal Scents palette, AND TOCCA parfum 50ml.

Nowhwere have I seen anyone mention some of these products for this box. Is everyones different?


Subscribe to Birchbox on You-tube because every month they put out a short video explaining the choices you have for the next month’s box.


The first box in your subscription will be filled with completely random products Birchbox picks for you. It’s not until your 2nd box that you have the option to either choose a sample, pick the curated box, or do nothing at all and let Birchbox pick the whole box for you (like they did for your 1st box).


When it comes to Birchbox, curated boxes contain a specific set of products and everyone gets the same. If you choose the alternative, you get a choice for one product (this month it was kiehl cream, arrow eyeliner and some cream, and looks like you chose the kiehl one), and rest are mystery items chosen according to your profile. I got the body peel and coastal palette in my February and January boxes respectively.


I don’t even remember having a choice in anything…. where is that part AND when do you choose for April? Also is it normal to get fragrance? not that I mind… I kinda like getting makeup from ipsy and hair/skin from here…


I bought this separately and used everything except the thickening spray, which I successfully swapped right away. I hated my other box and cancelled after – 4/5 products were totally wrong skin tone, skin type or hair texture. The only hit was the item I picked myself, so disappointing.


So why was my box so crappy? This box looks great but mine was mininsample sized. This box looks great. Inconsistency is why I cancelled!!!


Mine was pretty bad as well. I don’t know why they’re giving out the Benefits primer. It’s tiny tiny and who hasn’t already gotten it for free thousands of times? I’m this close to canceling BB too. I’ll wait to see what April preview and decide then.


$14 LIP BALM?!??!! Hah!! Let’s get real!

Melissa W.

I got the curated box as my choice and I love everything in it! Very happy with BB this month!

gretchen talton

what is a curated box?


When you subscribed to Birchbox they give you an option to pick a curated box, which reveals all samples inside and everyone gets the same thing, or pick one sample and be surprise with the rest of the box. Hope it helps!


I bought this box for $10 and for my regular sub I choose Kiehl cream, but rest of the items I was not happy about – another mascara and dry shampoo. I think I just stick with curator box for now on.

Liz Cadman

Sorry about your other box! 🙁 The curated boxes have almost always been good for me. I definitely recommend the curated box strategy!


I agree. For the past two months I got curator boxes and was very happy. It is just this month I could not resist Kiehl product, but lesson learned. Good thing, I still end up with curator box.

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Our reviewers research, test, and recommend the best subscriptions and products independently; click to learn more about our editorial guidelines. We may receive commissions on purchases made through links on our site.