I’ve tried a few different beauty subscription boxes over the years and after several less than impressive experiences, decided that they weren’t for me. I won’t mention names but you can probably google them based on the experiences I describe below. So this time I decided to try something slightly different and I was very pleasantly surprised when my Editor’s Box arrived from FabFitFun. Now to be fair, this is much more than a beauty box – it’s a lifestyle box but much to my delight, it did come with several full sized beauty products!
Let’s go back to the beginning though, when the whole concept of subscription boxes had just started. There were literally only two beauty subscription services available in Canada at the time. The first one I signed up for started out ok but I think they were having a difficult time sourcing product so it evolved into samples. Every month a beautifully packaged box would show up with a few “deluxe” samples. Like the free ones you can get at Sephora but not quite the name brands you would find there. Eventually that subscription service switched to once every few months as opposed to every month. I respect that the company was able to recognize that they were having a problem filling monthly boxes and shifted their business to provide customers with a better product fewer times per year. However I decided to move on and find another option as this was when beauty subscriptions started to take off and more companies were starting to provide this service.
The next one I tried taught me a valuable lesson – you should never pay in advance for a full year! You may get a discounted rate each month but you never know when the business will fold completely….and that’s exactly what happened. Two or three months into the year’s subscription, the company went out of business. The worst part was the way it was handled because they didn’t communicate this to any of their customers and went completely silent. There were no responses to emails, phone calls and nothing changed on their website. Customers had no idea what was happening for weeks on end. Then randomly one day, the website was updated to say that they had gone out of business.
After those two experiences I didn’t bother with another beauty subscription for a few years. During this time, many more options became available in Canada and these were large reputable companies from the UK and US so I decided to give one of the well established ones a try. I picked one started by a hugely successful YouTube beauty guru as it was getting a lot of great reviews. The first couple of bags contained decent brands but quite often the colours would be less popular ones or not suited to my taste or skin tone. Then it seemed like in the months that followed, I would get 1-2 deluxe samples of a desirable brand and the other 3-4 products would be from brands that I had never heard of. I’m all for discovering new brands but some of the ingredients listed in these items were rather toxic or they were made in countries with less stringent FDA regulations so I wasn’t super comfortable using them. At the end of the day, I just didn’t feel like the bag was worth the cost so I cancelled that subscription and decided that my beauty box subscription days were over.
Which brings us to FabFitFun (seasonal – issued 4 times per year, $49.99 each box). This is the only subscription box that I know of that is a lifestyle one, so you get a little bit of everything – some beauty, fitness, food, fashion, jewellery and more. This piqued my curiosity so I signed up to see what you get. The first box that arrived was the Editor’s Box which contains all of the most popular products from the last year or so. I have to say that I was really happy with what I received and the overall value of everything. Here’s what was included:
Modcloth Loch and Key Scarf ($34.99 value) – This large blanket scarf comes in different colour options which you unfortunately can’t pick but I was very happy with the black & white! It’s light weight but warm, cozy and super soft.
The Created Co Coffee Mug ($19 value) and Jook & Nona Tag Necklace ($65 value) – Inspirational messaging isn’t really my thing but coffee certainly is so I’ll definitely get a lot of use out of this travel mug. The tag necklace is 18k gold plated and quite nice quality. They come with different inspirational words like Love, Happy, Inspire or Dream. Again, I would have liked this better without the words but the design is otherwise simple and cute.
Pure Cosmetics Nude Collection Palette ($50 value), Zoya Nail Polish ($10 value) and Manna Kadar Liplocked Priming Gloss Stain ($24 value) – the makeup products are all great wearable colours that I would use. The eyeshadow palette looks very much like the Urban Decay Naked 2 palette. The packaging isn’t as sturdy as the UD one but I’m looking forward to seeing how the eye shadows compare. I’m already a fan of Zoya nail polish as they are 5 free (free of the 5 main toxins in many nail products) and this colour is totally my colour. I’m not sure about the lip product as the main ingredients are not something I generally like to use. The colour is a very pretty neutral though.
O.R.G. Skincare Mineral Peel Face ($44 value) and Marrakesh Argan & Hemp Hair Oil ($22.99 value) – the face peel is an enzyme exfoliant spray. I’ve used something similar to this once before and it worked well so very interested in seeing how this one performs. The hair oil adds a nice shine to your hair and smells so good!
There was also a colouring book and some coloured pencils and those were valued at $14. Overall the box had a total retail value of $283.98. Now do I think each item was worth the full retail value? Probably not but many were and overall the Editor’s Box is well worth the $49.99 cost. This is definitely the best value of any subscription box I’ve received and all items are full sized so you don’t need to worry about measly samples. You also have to take into account though that this particular box is the best of the best so there may be some fluffy filler in the regular seasonal boxes. I’m looking forward to seeing what comes in the Spring edition and will keep you updated.
FabFitFun is a US based subscription service which ships to Canada, please note that there is an additional shipping charge of around $8. For more information or if you are interested in trying it out, here’s a code for $10 off your first box!