ZenPop Japanese Beauty Pack is a monthly subscription from Zenmarket that sends Japanese drugstore skincare products, popular cosmetics, and a few accessories.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
The Subscription Box: ZenPop Japanese Beauty Pack
The Cost: $29.50 a box + free worldwide shipping. Save with longer commitments.
The Products: Japanese drugstore skincare products, popular cosmetics, and accessories
Ships to: Worldwide
ZenPop Japanese Beauty Pack April 2018 Review
I am relatively new to reviewing this subscription and was excited to see what they had in store:
This full-color information booklet was included. I appreciate the details since some of the packaging didn’t have a lot of English text!
Also, the inside of the box was cute, but you don’t see a picture, because this was so well-taped that I had to rip the cardboard to get the top open. (I guess that means it is secure during shipping!)
Hello Kitty Lip Balm – Listed Value 400 Yen (about $3.67 USD)
This is an officially-licensed item from Sanrio and I did find it on the Sanrio site, where it said “unavailable for purchase.” So, I’ve just used the value from the information card. (In general, the information card values for this subscription are pretty close to the actual selling prices when I can find the items, so I tend to trust them.) This is just a plain lip balm without a noticeable flavor or scent. It’s a little bit hard but I think it will be fine during the hot summertime, when it’ll warm up in the packaging a bit.
Koji Spring Heart Liquid Eyeliner in Black – Retail Value $4.75
This is a marker-type eyeliner (kind of like those Eyeko ones that show up in subscription boxes every now and then) and it is a dark, dark black. It definitely has staying power, too. Truthfully, I am a little intimidated by the color (I usually wear more muted colors) but, on the other hand, it is a good match for my hair color and for the mascara I am currently using. I played with this a little over the weekend and found it did not irritate my eyes, which is always a plus. (I have sensitive eyes.)
Here is a swatch of the eyeliner. This stayed on my arm through a long workout and most of a shower.
Cat Eyeliner Template by Ishihara Shoten – Listed Value 280 yen (about $2.57 USD)
This is only available on eBay and from third-party sellers on Amazon so I used the value from the information card. There are instructions on the back for using the template to get a perfect cat eye look. They’re not in English, but Japanese instructions always include a lot of pictures so I was able to figure it out. This definitely helped me feel better about using the black eyeliner because sometimes I have shaky hands.
Shiny Cat Nail Buffer – Retail Value $3.75
Four designs were possible. The back side is a little rougher (neither side is very rough, though) than the front. My nails are in terrible shape right now so I used this on one of the worst ones to sort of smooth the tip out and I definitely think it helped. I hate the thought of messing up the cute kitty face, though.
Hello Kitty Cherry Blossom Essence Sheet Mask (7 count) – Estimated Value $3.40 (buy 5 packs of 7 masks for $16.99)
I often say that I wish I had more masks of one type to really see the skincare effects of using them consistently. Well, here you get 7! They come all together in a resealable package (probably the one time ever I’ll say the packaging for a sheet mask was good for the environment since you only get one instead of 7 envelopes). These didn’t have a strong scent (to me, anyway) and the serum level was on the low side so they’re great for mornings before makeup because you don’t have to wait forever for the serum to dry. These apparently also have antioxidants, which is something I happen to like to see in my skincare (and they’re super affordable).
Hello Kitty Memo Pad and Pen – Listed Value 500 yen (about $4.58 USD)
I started looking for this online and do you have any idea how many Hello Kitty notepads are out there? Anyway, this is a cute little pad that I can use to make to-do lists at work or shopping lists or whatever. (This was a bonus item for subscribers.)
Black Cat Scrunchie from Maggio – Listed Value 1098 yen (about $10.07 USD)
I found these on a wholesale site but not retail. Anyway, I use scrunchies a lot because I think they pull out less hair than rubber bands. This is actually now my favorite scrunchie. It looks way nicer than any of the ones I have, and it also holds my hair a lot better. I am kind of sad I couldn’t find these for sale elsewhere because I would’ve bought a few more.
Verdict: I calculated a total value of $32.79 for the April 2018 Zenpop Beauty Pack. I think that is a pretty good deal, especially considering free international shipping is offered (and that’s not cheap!). I did have to rely on a lot of the values from the information card (which were given in yen) but when I could find the items for sale, the information card values were close or even a little low, which makes me think the other values are reliable as well. There were a lot of inexpensive items this month, but what’s nice about that is even if one item doesn’t work for you, you are still getting a pretty good deal. (Also it helps that I loved the scrunchie, which was close to 1/3 of the value.) Anyway, I found this fun to unbox and of course, the cat theme was perfect for me.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, the current pack available is June's.
Value Breakdown: At $29.50 for this subscription, you’re paying approximately the following per item:
- Lip balm $3.30
- Eyeliner $4.28
- Stencil $2.31
- Nail buffer $3.37
- Masks $3.06
- Note pad and pen $4.12
- Scrunchie $9.06
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