The Competition Box's Box Competition

 A few days ago I fell out of love with both Topbox and Ipsy. My November bags from each service were less than stellar. Because of this, I decided to take a long, hard look at my monthly subscriptions and see if there were other places that gave me more value for my money. It was time for a beauty box showdown! It's just like shopping around to find the bank with the offering the best interest rate. Even if subs are luxuries and not serious financial investments, they still have to feel worth it.

The Cost Breakdown:
Ipsy: $10 USD + $4.95 S&H = $14.95 USD total (or $17.19 CAD with the exchange rate)
Top Box: $12 CAD + HST = $13.56 CAD total

What I received in each box: 

ClariSEA Sea Salt Solutions Instant Glow Powder Exfoliant
Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant
FULL SIZE Elizabeth Mott You're So FINE Eyeliner
Marc Anthony Oil of Morocco Argan Oil Volume Shine Hairspray
FULL SIZE Nicole by OPI Nail Polish in Guys & Galaxies

Out of this bag, I tossed the ClariSEA since it needed to be mixed with my own cleanser (which already has an exfoliant) and most of the ingredients I could combine in my own pantry if I wished to do so (I don't). I also got rid of the Elizabeth Arden cream because I'm not a fan of the brand and the sample sent was too tiny to trade. I'm saving the eyeliner for the Holiday Party Season, where I'm sure to get use out of it. Even though I didn't care for them, my mother found use for the hairspray, and my little girl fell in love with the polish. If these two items weren't confiscated, I could have have at least traded them for something I really wanted.

Usefulness: 3/5
Full Size Products: 2/5
Total Value: $27.99 CAD (I only count the value of the full size products since all of the other ones are basically 'free samples')

Eyeko Black Magic Mascara
Elizabeth Arden Flawless Future Powered by Ceramide Caplet Serum
UniqOne All in One Hair Treatment
Benefit stay flawless 15-hour primer

I was so disappointed when I opened the bag, mostly because I was expecting five products, not the usual four. Topbox sent out an email claiming that Benefit would be throwing in an extra sample into this month's bag if they received 17,000 followers on Instagram. They met their goal, but instead of receiving the primer as a bonus item, it was included as one of the guaranteed four. I really did not appreciate this. First off, I basically had to 'work' for the sample, even though I was legitimately paying for it, and secondly, it made me assume that they had always planned on including this product in the bag, whether Benefit met their goal or not. The upset kept on coming though, because all of the samples this month were tiny, except for the mascara, and the hair treatment was actually labelled "free sample". I gave the mascara to the DD for when she plays makeup, tossed the primer in with my multitude of Benefit samples (all from Topbox), and trashed the other two items.

Usefulness: 1/4
Full Size Products: 0/4
Total Value: A whopping $0 CAD

In the end, I decided to cancel my Topbox subscription and give Ipsy one more chance to impress me. I also subscribed to Birchbox Canada. I took a look at the boxes sent out in the previous months and felt confident in spending the $14.95 ($10 + $4.95 S&H) to test out their December offerings. Another plus that I noticed after signing up? Birchbox was charging in Canadian funds. No fluctuating exchange rate to worry about! Glossybox was also an option I was looking in to, but for $26 USD per month with shipping, I couldn't bring myself to pull the trigger. I usually pay about the same for my Memeboxes, and they are at least guaranteed to include 6 full size items.

Note: This post contains some affiliate links.


  1. Thanks! I'm in Canada too. Was totally unimpressed with my first Ipsy bag. I'll consider Birchbox now that they are here, and based on your viewpoint. Cheers!

    1. If Ipsy charged Canadian funds, I would be much happier with it. It's the exchange that always hurts our poor, Canadian wallets

  2. Wow $14 for small samples that you could get for free? That's a shame! I haven't tried either but I read on another girl's blog that she has been hating her Ipsy bag but others totally love it... guess it just depends on the person. But that topbox is just bad... i can't believe that bottle actually said FREE SAMPLE on it!



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