Unboxing: Sephora Play! box January 2018

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You probably noticed that I haven't posted about my Sephora Play beauty subscription boxes on the blog for a few months. They just didn't feel eventful enough to justify the effort, and I started making videos of the unboxing in my Instagram Stories. This month though I felt compelled to come here and rant because the box was a complete fail for me. Keep reading to find out why!

Sephora ended 2017 with a pretty good box for December with lots of makeup and new products, so I was excited to discover the contents of my first box of the new year. Unfortunately it was a complete let down...

For details about what the Sephora Play box is and how it works, take a look at any of my past unboxing posts. Just as a reminder, this monthly subscription box costs $10 + tax.

The theme this month is as vague as it gets: "Happy You Year". The back of the leaflet shows a list of monthly "challenges" that you should take throughout the year, with deep thoughts such as "drink more water" and "do more yoga". Thanks Sephora, I had never thought about it myself. On the other side, we get a clue as to what this box is about: "Kick off 2018 with a new beauty routine that puts hydration first". Okay, that doesn't sound half bad. And the box does, indeed, contain products to cover the main steps of a skincare routine. Too bad they're all products I couldn't care less about...

skincare makeup smashbox glamglow briogeo anastasia beverly hills clinique

Here's what I got in my box:

- Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Gloss in Kristen. Are you kidding me Sephora? I already got an ABH lip gloss in my box LAST MONTH! Are you gonna start sending one in each and every box now? Are you expecting me to thank you for at least sending me a different shade? The one thing that would make me drop my subscription is to receive the same things over and over again. And now I get the same product two months in a row?? Is this a joke? I feel personally offended. Like they thought "oh, we still have too many of these mini glosses, let's just send her two in the next two months, she won't even notice". F* yeah I notice. You couldn't even replace it with another lip product from ABH, like a liquid lipstick, a mini classic lipstick, or whatever else??? This is leaving a rancid gloss taste in my mouth, I feel like Sephora really doesn't give a sh*t about me as a subscriber. They're not even trying.

anastasia beverly hills lip gloss vintage vs kristen
Left: the ABH lip gloss from my December 2017 box (shade Vintage)
Right: the ABH lip gloss from my January 2018 box (shade Kristen)

- GlamGlow Supercleanse Clearing Cream-to-Foam Cleanser: if you want to help me find a routine that "puts hydration first" don't send me a cleanser that contains charcoal. Charcoal is drying as hell, even with my combo skin I have to avoid it if I don't want dry patches to appear on my face.

- Smashbox Photo Finish Primerizer: this "primerizer" should win an award for the most absurd new product of 2017. So it's a moisturizer and a primer in one - a hydrating primer of course. Oh wait, so it's a moisturizer. There's nothing in there that will smooth out your skin or help your makeup stay any more than a good moisturizer. It doesn't even have SPF, which means I do need an extra step before putting on my foundation. Whoever came up with the concept and name should do more yoga and drink more water.

- Clinique Pep-Start Eye Cream: oh cool, an old product I've already tried about 2 years ago. I'm not completely sure where I got my sample last time, it could have been a reward for points I got with an order, or part of a sample bag. What's funny is that Clinique keeps adding to their Pep-Start line and there's a ton of new skincare products they've launched in the past few months. In fact, I received the newer HydroBlur moisturizer in my February 2017 box. But this time I get the old eye cream that didn't work at all for me because it's absolutely not moisturizing enough.

- Fresh Rose Floral Toner: I got excited when I saw this one because I thought it was the cool-looking toner with rose petals floating in the bottle, the one who got the Allure award and all the Instagram buzz. Nope. It's just a plain old toner. I'll probably use it. I wouldn't care much if my cat ate it.

- Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair Mask: I've received so much Briogeo in my past Play boxes that I started looking back at my old posts and bingo, just as I thought I did receive this mask before, in my May 2016 box. Except it was a deluxe size in a tube then, and not a packet sample. I even got a full-size jar of this mask in another subscription box very recently. Look, I think Briogeo does good things, but based on my Play boxes you'd think it's one of two brands available at Sephora, the other one being Ouai. When products or brands are shoved down my throat all the time I start to get annoyed. I'm getting annoyed at Briogeo. Take a step back from the subscription boxes guys. Especially if it's to promote the same mask over and over again - incidentally they JUST released a leave-in mask in a spray bottle, which would have been a lot more exciting to try.

fresh rose toner clinique pep start glamglow supercleanse smashbox primerizer


I think you noticed that finding the same lip gloss in my box two months in a row angered me a little, and it may have spoiled the entire experience this time. Still, none of the products in this month's box pique my interest. There's nothing new, nothing trending, and I just kept rolling my eyes as I pulled them out of the bag. By the way, you can watch my video in my Instagram highlighted story if you're curious about my reactions. On a more positive note, there was no fragrance sample in my box. Yay, no little vial that will spend its life unopened, gathering dust.

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


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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