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Birchbox Brighten Up Discovery Beauty Kit Review + Coupon

Jessica Hapak
ByJessica HapakJun 23, 2018 | 5 comments

Birchbox Brighten Up Kit box

Birchbox
3.7 overall rating
659 Ratings | 190 Reviews

Birchbox recently added a new discovery kit to their lineup—the Birchbox Brighten Up Beauty Kit!

FYI – this box is still available for purchase!

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

Birchbox Brighten Up Kit review

About This Birchbox Kit

The Box: Birchbox Brighten Up Beauty Kit

The Cost: $28 + $5 shipping

Limited Time Deal: Now through 6/24, use coupon code LEMON25 to save 25% off products from the When Life Gives You Lemons category!
COUPON: Use code FIRST15 to save 15% off your first Birchbox purchase and get free shipping on $50+ orders! (Not valid for subscriptions).

OR

Check out the 30% off sale for everyone, too!

The Products: 

  • Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Matte Bronzer – Deluxe sample
  • Milk Makeup Sunshine Oil – Deluxe sample
  • Lipstick Queen Mornin’ Sunshine Lipstick – Travel-size
  • Wander Beauty Catch the Light Highlighter & Glowtion – Deluxe sample
  • IPKN Big Apple Sun Cream SPF 50 – Deluxe sample
  • ARROW ENDURE Water-Resistant Mascara – Deluxe sample
  • Laura Geller New York Baked Blush-n-Brighten in Pink Grapefruit – Travel-size
  • Bonus: Birchbox Kabuki Brush – 1 brush

Ships to: US, FranceSpain and the UK and Canada

Birchbox Brighten Up Discovery Beauty Kit Review

Here is the info sheet detailing the products.

Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Matte Bronzer, 0.1 oz

Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Matte Bronzer, 0.1 oz – Estimated Value $10.36 (buy the full-size version for $29)

I have used this bronzer before, and I love it. It isn’t too dark for my fair complexion, and it blends really easily. I like using this along my hairline and jawline to add some all-over warmth to my face

Milk Makeup Sunshine Oil, 0.27 oz

Milk Makeup Sunshine Oil, 0.27 oz – Estimated Value $20.27 (buy the full-size version for $38)

I was so dead set against disliking this that I already knew what I was going to complain about before I even tried it. I know, I know, that isn’t fair to the sunshine oil and I need to do better. This product goes to show that you can’t judge a book by its cover. It has been 90+ degrees here with 70%+ humidity, and the last thing on earth I wanted to do was slather oil on my oily and sweaty face. I tried it on the back of my hand first, and I thought it wasn’t working because oil wasn’t going anywhere. It turns out this oil is so lightweight that it literally absorbs instantly into your skin, leaving behind a lovely faint citrus scent. Now I have tried it on my cuticles and the sides of my cheeks where my skin will get dry, and I am loving it. This is also a super generously sized sample at more than half the full-size version. I’m sorry I doubted you, sunshine oil!

Lipstick Queen Mornin’ Sunshine Lipstick, 0.05 oz – Estimated Value $10.42 (buy the full-size version for $25)

This lipstick is so lovely! It has the hydrating consistency of a balm thanks to the shea butter, mango butter, and olive oil, and it turns a lovely coral-pink on my lips. I am going to be keeping this in my purse to always have a lovely lip tint on the go!

Here is the lipstick applied only to my bottom lip. You can also see me wearing it below.

Wander Beauty Catch the Light Highlighter & Glowtion, 0.17 oz – Estimated Value $5.30 (buy the full-size version for $34).

I love the packaging of Wander Beauty products, but this is only the second item I have tried from the brand. I love that this provides a subtle tint and shimmer, making it a universal product. I used this mixed in with my tinted moisturizer for sheer coverage and glowing skin, and this can also be blended on its own on the parts of your face where the sun hits for a natural highlighter.

IPKN Big Apple Sun Cream SPF 50, 0.24 oz

IPKN Big Apple Sun Cream SPF 50, 0.24 oz – Estimated Value $4.27 (buy the full-size version for $24)

This pleasantly smelled like apples and absorbed into my skin quickly without leaving my skin feeling greasy. I am happy that it has such a high SPF without turning my oily skin into a grease bomb.

ARROW ENDURE Water-Resistant Mascara, 0.12 oz – Estimated Value $8.31 (buy the full-size version for $18)

When I was applying this mascara I was happy with the length it gave—it made my lashes look longer and wispier, but in a natural way. I can always use a good water-resistant mascara in the summer, which was why I was disappointed to look in the mirror a few hours later and see that the mascara was giving me a slight raccoon-eye look. I wasn’t sweating or swimming during that time, so this was a letdown.

Laura Geller New York Baked Blush-n-Brighten in Pink Grapefruit, 0.04 oz

Laura Geller New York Baked Blush-n-Brighten in Pink Grapefruit, 0.04 oz – Estimated Value  $7 (buy the full-size version for $28).

Blush isn’t my favorite beauty product to receive, but this definitely was a good inclusion for a discovery kit with a theme of “brighten up.” I like the shimmer that this has, as I could use it as a light highlighter for an overall rosy glow without having to use it on the apples of my cheeks (where I have a lot of natural redness). For the sake of the review, I tried applying it to my cheeks, only to realize that the small amount of powder on my brush was still way too much! Luckily this blended out beautifully, and since a little goes such a long way this mini blush will still last a long while!

Bonus: Birchbox Kabuki Brush

This bonus brush from Birchbox isn’t of awesome quality, but it definitely still gets the job done. I used this to buff out the Hoola bronzer on my hairline, and it really helped to diffuse the color for the natural warmth I was going for. This is a great size for throwing in your makeup bag for trips or quick touch-ups, too!

Here are the swatches. From top to bottom we have the Laura Geller blush, Hoola bronzer, Wander Beauty glowtion (blended out a bit), and the Lipstick Queen lipstick.

Here is the look I did using this kit! I started with a base of the IPKN sunscreen before mixing the Wander Beauty glowtion with my tinted moisturizer and applying with it with a beauty blender. Next, I used my Luxie 516 powder brush from the June Boxycharm to apply the Hoola bronzer in basically a halo around my face (my hairline at my forehead, my jawline, and the side of my cheeks). I then went in with the kabuki brush to blend it out and diffuse the color. I took my Luxie 522 brush (also from the June Boxycharm) with the Laura Geller brush and added it to the apples of my cheeks before grabbing the kabuki blush again to blend, blend, blend. I took a small drop of the glowtion and dabbed it right into the highest point of my cheekbones to add a little more glow before finishing with the Arrow mascara and Lipstick Queen lipstick. I loved the end result—I felt very fresh-faced and natural.

The Verdict: I think this discovery kit from Birchbox is another winner! You really get everything you need to make a cohesive look, and while none of the items are full-size most of the sample sizes are very generous. Most of these items were also new to me, which is one of the fun things about the discovery kits! Value-wise, Birchbox promises a $79 value and my math indicates the total value is about $65.93 (not including the bonus brush). That is a pretty big difference, and it is something that isn’t uncommon with the Discovery kits. That being said, I still definitely feel like I got my money’s worth from this—the value of the Milk sunshine oil and the Lipstick Queen is worth more than the cost of the kit, and those two items are some of my favorite new discoveries.

The Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if I sign up today? Yes, as of publication, this box is still available!

Coupon – Check out all the free gift with purchase coupons, and don’t forget to add your free sample pack with any $35 purchase.

Value Breakdown: This kit cost $33 ($28 + $5 shipping—don’t forget free shipping for Aces members or with a $50 purchase!) and I calculated a value of $65.93. That means you are paying approximately the following per item.

  • Hoola: $5.18
  • Sunshine Oil: $10.14
  • Lipstick Queen: $5.21
  • Wander Beauty: $2.65
  • IPKN: $2.14
  • Arrow: $4.15
  • Laura Geller: $3.50

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

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add Birchbox to your subscription list or wishlist!

Are you grabbing The Brighten Up Beauty Kit? What is your favorite item out of the box?

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.
Jessica Hapak
Jessica Hapak
I am a staunch believer that pineapple doesn’t belong on pizza and when I’m not working as a family law attorney I enjoy hiking the Louisiana trails (alligator sightings are a favorite!) or relaxing with Duchess, my cat. I’m a sucker for anything labeled a mystery box and I’ve never met a bath bomb I didn’t like.

Jessica Hapak
Jessica Hapak
I am a staunch believer that pineapple doesn’t belong on pizza and when I’m not working as a family law attorney I enjoy hiking the Louisiana trails (alligator sightings are a favorite!) or relaxing with Duchess, my cat. I’m a sucker for anything labeled a mystery box and I’ve never met a bath bomb I didn’t like.
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5 comments

Pink5

I have most of the Lipstick Queen color changers and frankly, they are a disappointment.

They supposedly react with your skin to provide your perfect version of whatever color class they are supposed to be and I get little to no reaction.

It’s a fun idea, but delivery could be better.

PAULA

I got this a couple of weeks ago using a discount code.   I mainly got it for the Benefit and Milk products.  The blush came smashed – and I didn’t bother contacting them since I’ve had horror story experiences with their customer service in the past. Not worth the aggrevation for something I’d probably never use it anyway.

The real downer for this order was the $35+ mystery gift I got with my purchase.  It turned out to be a giant jar of Olay overnight mask.  I was sooo excited because I love Olay products.  But when I opened it, the contents was watery and smelled funky.  Then I looked up the lot number: manufactured 4 years ago! Well, no wonder it smelled and looked funny.  Not much I can do about a looong -expired product that was free…so it just went into the garbage.

Needless to say I’m done with Birchbox. I’ve been disappointed with them before, and this was the nail in the coffin for them…

Michelle

I wouldn’t think the wander beauty product would give any coverage since its a highlighter but I think it does look great the way you applied it! I prefer sheer coverage to full so this is making me consider other products that could give me a similar look.

Nikkim

First thing I thought of with it being called brighten up is of course the vasanti exfoliator lol it’s a cute box though!

Paula

I got this a couple of weeks ago using a discount code. I mainly got it for the Benefit and Milk products. The blush came smashed – and I didn’t bother contacting them since I’ve had horror story experiences with their customer service in the past. Not worth the aggrevation for something I’d probably never use it anyway.

The real downer for this order was the $35+ mystery gift I got with my purchase. It turned out to be a giant jar of Olay overnight mask. I was sooo excited because I love Olay products. But when I opened it, the contents was watery and smelled funky. Then I looked up the lot number: manufactured 4 years ago! Well, no wonder it smelled and looked funny. Not much I can do about a looong -expired product that was free…so it just went into the garbage.

Needless to say I’m done with Birchbox. I’ve been disappointed with them before, and this was the nail in the coffin for them.

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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.