Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Walmart Beauty Box Subscription Spring 2015 Review, FREE + $5 S&H!!

If all the beauty subscription boxes were ranked in terms of quality, Walmart's would come in dead last by a mile.  That sounds like the prelude to a terrible review but it really isn't. Walmart's quarterly beauty box is intended to showcase samples from a few of their vendors who choose to participate. For the most part, these are small and regular sized samples (not the luxury sizes normally featured in beauty boxes) from drugstore brands.  Since the samples are donated, the price you pay ($5) basically just covers the shipping cost. 

Walmart's Spring Beauty Box is just now arriving in mailboxes.  Their box is good sized and brightly colored.  It looks like a lot more than a $5 box!

This box is packed with samples and coupons.  Many of these could be obtained for free by hanging around the beauty section of a drug store long enough.  You could also pull some of them right out of a beauty magazine.  The value is not much and the products, although useful, are not exciting.  But you get what you pay for and there is a small fun factor in receiving a box full of beauty samples from well known brands.

For the Spring box, L'Oreal has gifted us with samples of their Total Repair 5 Restoring Shampoo and Conditioner for damaged and overworked hair.  At 1.7 oz. each, these are the most generous samples in the box.  Interesting how they've designed the shampoo to sit upright and the conditioner to sit upside down on its cap.  Wonder why?

"Real" beauty boxes generally avoid foil pack samples (subscribers squawk loudly when they get them) but they are pretty much a given in a $5 box. This is a sample of Nivea's In-Shower Body Lotion.  The idea here is to apply this to wet skin, then quickly rinse it off. Interesting idea if it works..

This is a half ounce sample of Dial's 7 Day Moisturizing Lotion.  I could not find this product at all on Walmart's website so I guess you have to go elsewhere if you want to buy it.  I'm sure other retailers will appreciate the free boost from Walmart!

Here are several more coupons and promotional flyers.  There's a $5 discount for women's Rogaine Foam and a $2 discount on any L'Oreal cosmetic product.  The Maybelline card doesn't contain any discount for its "Dare to Go Nude" Eyeshadow Palette.  Great nude palettes are always in high demand so I'm sure a low cost one will fly off the shelves.  I suspect this one will generate a lot of YouTube video reviews.  The orange and white card is Walmart's standard "Welcome" and plea for social media sharing card.

There is a little spray sample of Lady Gaga Fame "Black Fluid" Eau de Parfum.  The card says it's "black like the soul of fame"....ha!  Not sure how to describe this scent; it's a floral with a hint of apricot to it.  Just a tiny bit went a long way on my skin and I really like it so far.  And yes, of course, you could probably get this for free at any perfume counter.

There is a very small foil pack sample of Olay Regenerist Luminous, a moisturizing cream and another sample of Renewal Intensive Firming Serum from Burt's Bees. The sample pack for this one includes a $3.00 discount coupon.  Facial serums are seriously in vogue right now for their anti-aging properties.  Again, I could not find this on Walmart's website but as Burt's Bees has an astonishing array of products, it's possible I overlooked it.

I had to get out my jeweler's loupe to figure out what this sample from Caress contains.  It's obviously a cream.  The front says "Adore Forever" and describes the product as "a long lasting irresistible fragrance released on touch".  In tiny letters at the very bottom, it says "body wash".  It's almost like they are trying to hide what the product actually is!  I don't know why because it does smell good and I look forward to trying it out.

Last and maybe least are these two very small foil pack samples attached to cards. The first one is Age Perfect Glow Renewal, a facial oil from L'Oreal and the other one is Ultra-Lift Miracle Sleeping Cream, an anti-age and anti-fatigue night cream that comes with a $2 discount card.  Both seem like good products to try but there's just not enough here to conduct any real test. 

There isn't much of substance in this box unless you make the effort to get into the store and use the coupons.  You can't complain about the value because it costs so little.  You can't complain about the curation because the intent of this box is pure advertising.  They aren't trying to charm us.

Oh Walmart, what are we going to do with you?  As with all things Walmart, this box begs a love/hate relationship.  It has been estimated that the economies of scale made possible by Walmart reduce the cost of living for every person in this country by approximately $3,000 per year.  (Whether you shop there or not, their negotiating strength puts downward pressure on prices for all retailers.)  That is an undeniable benefit as are the tax revenues and employment provided by Walmart. On the other hand, many people think the ubiquitous nature of their stores and their predatory business practices contribute to a cultural wasteland.  Love it or hate it, I doubt Walmart is going anywhere any time soon.

If you want to try out a few of the newer products offered by mainstream brands and if you actually go in the store often enough to make use of the fairly generous coupons, get a cheap thrill and check out Walmart's Beauty Box!

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Disclosure:  Views and opinions expressed in this blog are strictly my own.  Product discussed in this post was purchased by Lone Star Shopper. Post does not contain referral or affiliate links.  

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