Unboxing: Sephora Play September 2017

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monthly beauty subscription box $10

Another month, another Sephora Play! beauty subscription box to open! Was it a hit or a miss this time? Let's find out!

What is Sephora Play! ?

By now, I'm sure most of you already know. If you don't, here's the deal: Sephora Play! is a beauty subscription box that comes to members' mailboxes every month and costs $10 (+ tax), charged automatically to the credit card on file. For this price, we receive 5 samples, deluxe or travel sizes of makeup, skincare, haircare products and one fragrance sample. You cannot pick your samples - you just get what you get and there's no exchanging samples you don't like. I don't remember filling a survey asking for my preferences when I signed up, but the subscription is linked to your Sephora BI/VIB/Rouge account so you might want to complete your profile just in case. Different subscribers may receive different samples every month, so what you see in my box might not be what someone else got.

The Sephora Play! program was launched in 2015 in a bunch of test markets in the US and opened nationwide in April 2016. Subscribers are charged at the beginning of each month and the box is supposed to be shipped in the 3rd week of the month: I was charged on September 3. The box was sent on September 12 through UPS Mail Innovations as usual, which is a mix of UPS and USPS, where UPS brings the box to your city and USPS does the final delivery to your mailbox. I got it on September 18.

Let's unbox this month's goodies!

The theme for this month's box is Fall Into Beauty. You could hardly make it more vague, so I had no particular expectations for the contents. I mean, you would imagine that a fall box would include some autumnal hues like makeup in berry, plum or bordeaux shades, but we've seen in the past that Sephora doesn't really stick to the seasons or the name of the box. The bag the products come in this month is bright pink and made in a soft satin-like material. The black print on it says "a Change of Face" - already not much to do with fall but it's cute.

The little leaflet promotes the use of sephora.com Community features. It's ugly enough that I forgot to take pictures of it! Sephora was also offering reward points for completing your community profile a couple weeks ago, so I would expect the discussions and boards to have more visibility on the website in the future.

What's in the September box?

- Benefit Cosmetics Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel in 3 Medium: that's a product I've been using for years, long before the recent packaging revamp. I've used it in shade 1 and 2 and neither was a perfect match, so we'll see about 3. I have a feeling it's going to be too warm. Anyways, it's not a new product for me, but having a mini will be convenient when travelling.

- Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner in Black: I've used Stila's pencil liners, but I don't remember ever trying their liquid liners, so I'll be glad to test it. A few months ago I got the Kat Von D black liner in a Play box so I'll be able to compare them, that should be interesting.

- Laura Mercier Velour Lovers Lip Colour in Happy: Laura Mercier is not a brand I've explored much, so I'm intrigued by this lipstick. The mini packaging looks great - that's promising for the full-size product. It's the only product in this box that's somehow related to fall with a plummy color, and the metallic matte finish is also perfectly on trend for this season.

- Belif The True Cream Moisturizing Bomb: I just started using a deluxe sample of this cream, 100% identical to the one I received in this box, that I got a few weeks ago at Sephora as a gift with purchase. This is what I find so disappointing with Sephora Play, instead of offering their subscribers exclusive products, they recycle the travel-sizes you get from GWP and rewards redemption. So annoying. I happen to enjoy this moisturizer so I'll use it, but I could have picked another free sample with purchase if I had known...

- Devacurl Melt Into Moisture Matcha Butter Conditioning Mask: this is a very generous sample (I wonder if you have to use a ton to see any effect). I have wavy hair, and Sephora knows that from my profile, so this is a good pick for me. It contains green tea butter (how do you make butter from green tea, I'd like to know...), almond oil and beet root extract, which sounds like a weird combination but we'll see!

- The fragrance sample: Stella McCartney Pop. With tomato leaves, green mandarin and violet leaves as the top notes, it sounds pretty exciting. It is rather pleasant, but to me it smells a little bit too much like violet candy. Oh I wish they would have sent a sample of the new Chanel Gabrielle instead...


After a few good months we're back to a "meh" box. Nothing in here is new, some stuff was given away for free just a few weeks ago, and while only good brands are included as usual, there's just nothing in here that made me go "oooh". I'm a bit excited to try the lipstick, but that's about it.

Number of products: 6
Makeup products: 3
Products I'm really excited about: 1
Products I know I won't use: 0 
My grade: B-

Where to buy?

The subscription box featured in this review was purchased by me. I received no compensation to write this post, which only reflects my personal opinion. This post contains affiliate links. I receive a very small commission when you click on those links, and the money generated covers a small portion of my expenses to purchase products for review. Clicking on those links helps ensure that Beaumiroir continues to publish reviews of new and exciting high end French products - at no cost to you!

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