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Bless Box | December 2018 | Unboxing & Honest Review

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Bless Box is a monthly subscription service for women curated by lifestyle blogger Sazan Hendrix: “your digital bestie as your own personal stylist.” Each box includes an amazing assortment of beauty, skincare, fashion, lifestyle, health, and home products that Sazan herself would use, with a promised retail value of around $150 or more. This is a review and unboxing of the December 2018 “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” Edition of Bless Box.

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The Haul

Bless Box December 2018: Haul

I was so excited to open the December 2018 “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” Box, my very first Bless Box! It contained 14 items, each with its own themed label, like “Something Active” and “Something Delish.”

It also contained a 17-page glossy color informational pamphlet containing photos, information and tips about the products included in the box, as well as 3 mini beauty articles featuring items not contained in the box and other seasonal topics of interest.

Bless Box December 2018: brochure table of contents

I loved the “Saz Tips”! Many beauty products claim multi-purpose applications, so it is nice to see how Sazan herself recommends using the items that she has chosen to include.

The brochure is magazine-quality and very thorough. Although one of the bonus articles was heavy on product promotion, it included a bunch of useful tips and tricks. I am planning to keep this brochure as a resource and reference.

Bless Box December 2018: brochure mini articles

Without further ado, here are the items that I received in my December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year”:

  • 1. Something Lovely: Love Beauty & Planet, Delicious Glow Body Butter in Murumuru Butter and Rose (9.17 oz)
  • 2. Something Glittering: Oh K! Skincare, Gold Dust Hydrogel Mask (25 g)
  • 3. Something Soothing: Love Beauty & Planet, Shea Velvet Hand Cream in Shea Butter & Sandalwood (1 oz)
  • 4. Something Nourishing: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum (5.3 ml)
  • 5. Something Sensational: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Washable Mascara in Blackest Black (0.32 fl oz)
  • 6. Something Sustainable: Bambu, Ivory Bamboo Toothbrush
  • 7. Something Super Clean: Steripod, Classic Single Toothbrush Protector in Pink
  • 8. Something Delish: This Bar Saves Lives, Maple Pecan Bar (1.4 oz)
  • 9. Something Protecting: Steripod, Single Razor Protector in Black
  • 10. Something Healthy: Swisse, Ultiboost High Strength Cranberry 25,000 mg Dietary Supplement (100 capsules)
  • 11. Something Sparkling Clean: Soapiary, Citrus Coriander Cleanse Soap (5 oz)
  • 12. Something Healing: Green Goo, First Aid Travel Tin (1.82 oz)
  • 13. Something Cleansing: Puracy, Natural Body Wash in Citrus & Sea Salt (4 fl oz)
  • 14. Something Active: Manduka, Yogitoes Headbands (12-pack, Maui Collection)

1. Something Lovely: Love Beauty & Planet, Delicious Glow Body Butter in Murumuru Butter and Rose (9.17 oz)

The first item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is “Something Lovely”: a full-sized canister of Love Beauty & Planet’s Delicious Glow Body Butter in Murumuru Butter and Rose.

About

This body butter is a vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, dye-free, 24-hour moisturizer. The murumuru butter is extracted from the nuts of the Amazonian murumuru palm tree and contains lauric, myristic, and oleic acids. Murumuru butter is odorless, so Love Beauty & Planet infused this body butter with a delicate rose petal scent to provide a spa-like experience.

My Thoughts

Even though I moisturize multiple times a day, the dry Tokyo winter is really getting to my skin. So I was excited to try this new body butter!

The scent is definitely rosey, but it smells fresh and young compared to the typical “old lady” perfume that I was expecting. My husband doesn’t usually like floral scents, but he thinks this stuff smells great. And isn’t that the most important question of all?

The body butter really softens my hands without leaving them greasy or sticky — exactly what I look for in a heavy-duty winter moisturizer. The consistency is richer and stiffer than my normal body butters (probably due to the shea butter content), but not quite as solid as my pure/nearly pure shea butters.

Not only is this body butter effective, but it’s easy to feel good about supporting Love Beauty & Planet. Ethical sourcing, cruelty-free products, and a mission of creating 100% recyclable packaging are just some of the reasons to love this brand.

This product is a big win for me!

Ingredients

Other than the murumuru butter, this product also contains shea butter, carnauba wax, sunflower seed oil, and a number of other ingredients.

If you have allergies or sensitivities, you should check the full ingredient list before using.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of Love Beauty & Planet’s Delicious Glow Body Butter in Murumuru Butter and Rose is $11.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase a jar from Amazon.

2. Something Glittering: Oh K! Skincare, Gold Dust Hydrogel Mask (25 g)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is this Gold Dust Sheet Hydrogel Mask from Oh K! Skincare.

About

This mask was the Gold Winner in the “Best New Sheet Mask” category of the 2017 Pure Beauty Awards. It contains gold dust, Vitamin B3, and green tea antioxidants to purify and brighten the skin.

I love sheet masks because they force me to slow down and rest. What’s more, the winter in Japan can really dehydrate my skin and make me look ten years older. So I can’t wait to try this mask!

Time required: 30 minutes

Expiration Date: May 12, 2019

My Thoughts

I adore sheet masks and have been wanting to try this one! I’m not sure I’m convinced that gold dust will do anything for the skin, but it’s a little bit silly and fun to sparkle while you are relaxing with a mask on your face.

Knowing me and my busy life, I would have like to receive a mask with more than a few months of shelf life remaining, but that’s really just a nit-pick.

Another winning item in my book!

Ingredients

This mask includes gold, mica, iron oxides, sea buckthorn berry extract, swiftlet nest extract, and oolong tea leaf extract. Yes, you read correctly: bird’s nest! If you’re so inclined, you can read about this Korean beauty ingredient here.

If you have allergies or sensitivities, you should check the full ingredient list before using.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this sheet mask is $8. So if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase it from Amazon.

3. Something Soothing: Love Beauty & Planet, Shea Velvet Hand Cream in Shea Butter & Sandalwood (1 oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a 1 oz tube of Love Beauty & Planet’s Shea Velvet Hand Cream in Shea Butter & Sandalwood.

About

Like the murumuru body butter, this hand cream is a vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, dye-free moisturizer. The shea butter is the hydrating star here, and the sandalwood fragrance provides an indulgent richness to the formula.

The sandalwood

My Thoughts

Hooray for another Love Beauty & Planet product in this box!

This hand cream smells light and rich at the same time. And despite the high shea butter content, it soaks right into my skin without any greasiness left behind.

This product is also a win for me.

Ingredients

This hand cream contains shea butter, carnauba wax, sandalwood oil, and a number of other ingredients.

If you have allergies or sensitivities, you should check the full ingredient list before using.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this hand cream is $5.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase it from Target.

4. Something Nourishing: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum (5.3 ml)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a full-sized tube of Maybelline’s Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum.

About

This serum promises to condition your lashes so that they look fuller and thicker within 4 weeks. You are supposed to apply twice a day, and you can wear it under mascara.

My Thoughts

I’ve never used an eyelash serum, which makes it hard to justify dropping money on a tube. But maybe this will be the push I need to add this to my make-up regimen. I’m really big on mascara, because my eyelids are too big for my short, stubby eyelashes, so I’m excited to see if this product makes a difference. Yay!

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this eyelash serum is $11.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase it from Lookfantasticfrom Amazon, or from Target.

5. Something Sensational: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Washable Mascara in Blackest Black (0.32 fl oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a full-sized tube of Maybelline’s Lash Sensational Washable Mascara in Blackest Black.

Retail Value

About

This super black mascara separates and fans each layer of lashes, for a fuller and thicker look.

My Thoughts

This mascara was my go-to for the longest time. I’m a fan of waterproof mascara, but you can never have too many mascaras lying around. This stuff is really bold and natural, which is just what I like.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this mascara is $5. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase it from Amazon or from Target. You can also shop more mascaras from Maybelline on Lookfantastic. And if you loved the eyelash serum as well, you can purchase a mascara+serum kit from Amazon.

6. Something Sustainable: Bambu, Ivory Bamboo Toothbrush

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is an ivory bamboo toothbrush from Bambu.

Bambu Ivory Bamboo Toothbrush

About

This soft-bristle toothbrush is made of sustainably harvested bamboo.

My Thoughts

I love the idea of a sustainable, biodegradable toothbrush! I’ll be interested to see how long it lasts, and how it feels to brush my teeth with wood in my mouth.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this toothbrush is $5. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase a 4-pack directly from Bambu. (Hurry! It looks like they are running a sale!)

7. Something Super Clean: Steripod, Classic Single Toothbrush Protector in Pink

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a Steripod Classic Single Toothbrush Protect0r in Pink.

About

The Steripod is a BPA-free toothbrush cover and protector for travel, and it comes in a few fun colors. Unlike most toothbrush covers, the Steripod freshens up your toothbrush. And best of all, it uses thymol, derived from thyme, to create an antibacterial effect.

My Thoughts

Sazan must be reading my mind! Toothbrushes are the bane of a traveler’s life, as you expat mamas know. I have a few cheap toothbrush covers that are better than nothing, but I have always wondered about them from a sanitary perspective.

This Steripod “expires” 3 months after you start using it, so I can see this product getting expensive over time. But chronic illness warriors can be prone to infections, and this pod may help us enjoy traveling without falling ill and ruining our long-awaited trip.

This is definitely going in my suitcase for my next vacation!

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this toothbrush protector is $3.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box, you did not receive this item in your box, or you just want to stock up on pods for the whole family, you can purchase a family value 8-pack from Amazon.

8. Something Delish: This Bar Saves Lives, Maple Pecan Bar (1.4 oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a Maple Pecan Bar from This Bar Saves Lives.

About

This bar is all-natural, non-GMO, gluten-free, and kosher. And for every bar purchased, This Bar Saves Lives pledges to donate food to a child in need.

My Thoughts

This bar was absolutely delicious. I gobbled it up as I was browsing through the pamphlet for this box! I can’t wait to try the other This Bar Saves Lives flavors. Healthy and delicious…how can you go wrong?

Allergies

The oats in this bar are certified gluten-free, so our celiac and gluten intolerant friends can rejoice!

Naturally, if you have a nut allergy, you may want to steer clear of this product. Even if you aren’t allergic to the variety of nut that is contained within a particular bar, This Bar Saves Lives processes a ton of peanut, pistachio, almond, and pecan products, and possibly other nuts as well. But I’m sure you knew that already!

Disability Issues

I have myasthenia gravis, which makes it difficult for me to chew granola and other tough foods. Pigs will fly before any subscription box will work around my very particular needs, but I must say that I struggled to finish this bar.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this bar is $1.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase 12-packs of many yummy This Bar Saves Lives flavors on Amazon, or a variety pack if you’re like me and can’t choose:

9. Something Protecting: Steripod, Single Razor Protect0r in Black

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a Steripod Razor Protect0r in Black.

Steripod Razor Protector

About

The Steripod is a BPA-free, zinc-powered clip-on razor protector that keeps your razor sharp and rust-free during travel. And it protects you from those dreaded cuts!

My Thoughts

I never knew I needed this, and now I am not going to be able to do without it! I usually wrap the head of my razor in tissues. Yes, I know, sticky and gross. I can’t wait to upgrade my travel game with my two new Steripods.

This is definitely going in my suitcase for my next vacation!

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this razor protector is $4.99. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box, you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase one from Amazon or from Target. You can also stock up with a Steripod kit that includes 4 toothbrush protectors, 2 razor protectors, and 2 tongue cleaners in a cute assortment of colors.

10. Something Healthy: Swisse, Ultiboost High Strength Cranberry 25,000 mg Dietary Supplement (100 capsules)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a 100-capsule canister of the Swisse Ultiboost High Strength Cranberry 25,000 mg Dietary Supplement.

About

This supplement supports urinary tract health. It also contains a mega-dose of antioxidants.

My Thoughts

I have multiple chronic illnesses and take a bunch of meds, so I’m always careful with supplements. This one looks benign enough, but I’m going to clear it with my doctors before using it. But I don’t drink juice because of my type 1 diabetes, so it would be great to get the benefits of cranberry juice without all the sugar.

(The goop on the bottle in the picture is from the Puracy body wash, which exploded in transit.)

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this supplement is $20. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase it from Amazon.

11. Something Sparkling Clean: Soapiary, Citrus Coriander Cleanse Soap (5 oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is this Citrus Coriander Cleanse Soap from Soapiary.

About

This luxury soap is vegan, gluten-free, paraben-free, phthalate-free, and sulfate-free, and it is not tested on animals. The bar has been triple-milled to generate an impossibly smooth texture and a rich lather. As a bonus, it should last longer than a traditional bar of soap.

The soap contains shea butter, as well as sustainably harvested palm oil.

My Thoughts

I actually love using bar soap to wash my body, so I am thrilled to have discovered a new brand to play around with. Through the packaging, this soap smells amazing and spa-fresh. I am dying for my current bar to run out so that I can replace it with this one!

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this soap is $4. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box, you did not receive this item in your box, or you just want to stock up, you can purchase 6-packs of any of the following scents from Amazon:

12. Something Healing: Green Goo, First Aid Travel Tin (1.82 oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is the First Aid travel tin from Green Goo.

About

My Thoughts

I love this stuff! It’s an all-purpose balm that soothes unhappy skin. My kids get tons of rashes from dry skin, and they don’t like to use lotion. This balm will help bridge that gap and give them a bit of pain relief to boot.

Ingredients

I love the ingredient list for this balm: olive oil, sunflower oil, plantain, chickweed, yarrow, sage, calendula, St. John’s wort, comfrey leaf, gum benzoin, myrrh, chaparral, Vitamin E oil, and beeswax. It also contains essential oils of lavender and rosemary.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this balm is $8.95. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, you can purchase a value 4-pack of the First Aid travel tins or, better yet, a value 4-pack of the First Aid large tins on Amazon.

13. Something Cleansing: Puracy, Natural Body Wash in Citrus & Sea Salt (4 fl oz)

The next item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a 4-fl-oz bottle of Puracy’s Natural Body Wash in Citrus & Sea Salt.

About

This body wash is a natural, coconut-based cleanser. The aroma is amazing, perhaps a little strong, but very, undeniably fresh.

Puracy claims that the body wash contains no harsh chemicals, and it is vegan, gluten-free, sulfate-free, hypoallergenic, non-toxic, cruelty-free, biodegradable. It is also free of a whole laundry list of other nasties.

My Thoughts

Other than the fact that the bottle leaked all over my box in transit, I love it and can’t wait to try it! It’s supposed to be super concentrated, so this small bottle should last me awhile. And I’m always on the lookout for non-toxic body washes that I can use on my kids.

Ingredients

This body wash contains a number of coconut- and plant-derived cleansers and preservatives, as well as Himalayan pink sea salt, pink grapefruit essential oil.

If you have allergies or sensitivities, be sure to check the full ingredient list before using.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this body wash is $8.95. And if you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you’d like a refill of your body wash, you can purchase a full-sized bottle (16 fl oz) on Amazon.

14. Something Active: Manduka, Yogitoes Headbands (12-pack, Maui Collection)

The final (yes! final!) item in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” is a 12-pack of Yogitoes headbands from Manduka, in colors from the Maui Collection.

Manduka Yogitoes Heaband 12-pack in Maui Collection

About

These organic cotton and lycra headbands are designed to wick sweat during yoga and hold hair out of your eyes.

My Thoughts

I’ve been looking for some good all-purpose head wraps to make me feel pretty when I’m too exhausted to shower, and to hold my hair back when I’m doing a face mask. I love the eye-popping colors, and the wide bands will contain my crazy voluminous hair without squeezing my head too tight light some headbands.

Retail Value

Bless Box claims that the MSRP of this supplement is $20. If you missed the December 2018 Bless Box or you did not receive this item in your box, it looks like it is not available for sale online. But you can purchase an 18-pack in a different color palette directly from Manduka. (Hurry! It looks like they are running a sale!)

Delivery Time

My December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” was delivered to me in Tokyo, Japan, on January 15, 2019. I subscribed in late December, so this may have caused a bit of a delay. If anything, it is impressive that they got me on the list in time to receive this December box!

Value & Verdict

My total monthly cost for this subscription is $41.66.

The total retail value of the items that I received in the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” was as follows:

  • 1. Something Lovely: Love Beauty & Planet, Delicious Glow Body Butter in Murumuru Butter and Rose (9.17 oz) ($11.99)
  • 2. Something Glittering: Oh K! Skincare, Gold Dust Hydrogel Mask (25 g) ($8)
  • 3. Something Soothing: Love Beauty & Planet, Shea Velvet Hand Cream in Shea Butter & Sandalwood (1 oz) ($5.99)
  • 4. Something Nourishing: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Boosting Eyelash Serum (5.3 ml) ($11.99)
  • 5. Something Sensational: Maybelline, Lash Sensational Washable Mascara in Blackest Black (0.32 fl oz) ($5)
  • 6. Something Sustainable: Bambu, Ivory Bamboo Toothbrush ($5)
  • 7. Something Super Clean: Steripod, Classic Single Toothbrush Protect0r in Pink ($3.99)
  • 8. Something Delish: This Bar Saves Lives, Maple Pecan Bar (1.4 oz) ($1.99)
  • 9. Something Protecting: Steripod, Single Razor Protector in Black ($4.99)
  • 10. Something Healthy: Swisse, Ultiboost High Strength Cranberry 25,000 mg Dietary Supplement (100 capsules) ($20)
  • 11. Something Sparkling Clean: Soapiary, Citrus Coriander Cleanse Soap (5 oz) ($4)
  • 12. Something Healing: Green Goo, First Aid Travel Tin (1.82 oz) ($8.95)
  • 13. Something Cleansing: Puracy, Natural Body Wash in Citrus & Sea Salt (4 fl oz) ($5.99)
  • 14. Something Active: Manduka, Yogitoes Headbands (12-pack, Maui Collection) ($48)

In sum, here’s how the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” measures up:

  • Total retail value: $145.88
  • Total savings over retail: $1o4.22
  • Average price per item: $3.00

Overall, I think that I got absolutely incredible value with my haul from the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” Bless Box did not quite meet its target value of $150 per box, but they got pretty darn close. And in any event, the target is not described as a guarantee, so I do not feel cheated by the tiny gap. Because shipping to Japan is only $15, this is one of the only boxes that still delivers supercharged retail value even when you subscribe from abroad.

In addition to the retail savings, I was very satisfied with the haul itself from my December 2018 Bless Box. I received a bunch of new body care items that I am psyched to try, as well as a few travel and health goods that will be lifesavers for me.

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General Information

For general information about Bless Box, including subscription options, cost, shipping, tracking, packaging, charitable giving, and customer experience, see the Bless Box Overview post.

Also, don’t forget to check out the rest of our monthly Bless Box reviews.

And if you are in the market for a fabulous subscription or gift box for women that offers global shipping, check out our round-up of the top 10 subscriptions for women who live abroad!

Give a Shout!

Let us know what you think of the December 2018 Bless Box: “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” in the comments below. As always, we love hearing from you.

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