Sunday, August 16, 2015

Mishibox: August 2015 Review and Unboxing

Ahh Korean Beauty Subscriptions. I remember just a couple of years ago the only way to get your kbeauty fix was to buy direct from Korea, pay a bunch for shipping, and then wait impatiently for a month for your haul to arrive. Then of course, the ever-famous Memebox came along and changed the game forever. Kbeauty blew up in the blogging world, and also became popular with subscription box addicts, even though Memebox wasn't exactly a subscription. Shortly afterwards, Beauteque launched their site and began curating monthly bags and eventually turning it into a regular subscription. Following close behind was 3b and now, Mishibox. There were of course, a few in between that didn't make it very far or don't meet the criteria of a subscription box, but it's amazing how quickly the kbeauty subscription idea took off. Mishibox is a little different from the other subscriptions in that Beauteque has a storefront and is first and foremost an online retailer, and 3b is in a less expensive price bracket. This is only their 3rd box as they only recently launched, and so far my thoughts have been pretty split. I wanted to get at least one more month to make my final decision on Mishibox- and here it is: the August box!
The Details
Mishibox is a beauty Korean Beauty Subscription service that sends subscribers 4-6 items each month- which can be a mixture of deluxe samples and full size products. A subscription to Mishibox costs $19.95 per month, shipping included. Mishibox currently only ships to the United States, but if you're an international customer and want in on the fun, you can join their International Waitlist.
Update!
Mishibox is now delivering to Canada! They are charging a shipping rate of $8.95, but if you must have this subscription, you can sign up on their site! 
Each month, Mishibox will have the ingredients for every product they included translated on their website!  Since English translations for Korean ingredient lists are not always readily available, I think this is already a step above and beyond on their part.
 The info card also includes a small color photo of each item, it clearly states which products are full size, what they are, how to use them as well as the retail price. 
 The Face Shop: Rice Ceramide Moisture Emulsion ($12)
I received the toner from this line not too long ago in a Beauteque bag, although I haven't tried it yet as I believe it's best geared towards dry skin, which I don't have. I like to keep these things for the colder months though, as my skin tends to dry out a lot more. This is a quick-absorbing emulsion (a thinner-consistency cream) that uses rice extracts to minimize dark spots, freckles, and hyper pigmentation. It also uses ceramides to moisturize the skin. I don't really have any dark spots/freckles etc on my face, so this is probably better suited for someone that needs some evening to their skin tone. It's a nice, full size product to have included, though!

YADAH: Anti-T Toner and Emulsion ($1)
I have to admit, because I'm kind of a whiner when it comes to "curation" in subscription boxes- I was a little confused as to why they would include this duo since it includes yet another emulsion. 2 emulsions in one box seems like overkill, even if one is a sample size. Regardless, I am only vaguely familiar with the YADAH brand, so I'm happy to see a familiar, yet still relatively unknown company being featured. This duo contains the emulsion and toner which are both made for controlling acne and excess sebum while soothing troubled skin. They actually seem perfectly up my alley in terms of skin type, so I'm pretty interested in testing these out! Mishibox did not provide a suggested retail value for these since they are samples, although I regularly see these mini "duos" for around $1.

Tonymoly: Panda's Dream White Hand Cream ($12)
 Ahh a classic line from Tonymoly: the Panda's Dream products! I of course, love anything in adorable packaging, so I am already quite familiar with these little pandas. Interestingly enough, I don't already have the hand cream, so this was a new product for me personally! This hand cream contains manuka honey to hydrate and nourish the skin, while bamboo sap helps moisturize without greasiness.
The hand cream itself is actually pretty thick in comparison to a regular hand lotion. It has a light fresh floral scent, but nothing too overpowering. I do think that this did a nice job of moisturizing my hands without much of a greasy residue, so I think this little guy has found a new home on my bedside table!

YADAH: Mask Pack (Snail) ($3.50)
Next up we have another YADAH product, this time in the form of a sheet mask. I love the little grumpy girl that YADAH uses on their packaging- I totally feel her on a spiritual level. I think that subscribers received varying masks as the info card doesn't specifically state "snail mask" however it seems like that's the one I received. These masks are free of artificial colorants, parabens, ethanol and fragrances, which is nice. Although I haven't looked into the ingredients yet to see what we're dealing with. Since Mishibox says this mask retails at $3.50, that's about $2.50 more than I am usually willing to spend on a sheet mask unless it's really, really good. I'm interested to test this one out soon and see if it differs from my less expensive masks.

Tonymoly: Delight Tony Tint ($6)
Ah, yet another Tonymoly tint. It's not Mishibox's fault at all, however 3b also sent a sample sized version of this tint in their August box- so 2 in one month is pretty crazy, especially since I think this product is a kbeauty staple. I feel that if you've been into Korean beauty products for longer than a few months, you probably already own this product in more than one shade. I have multiple already, so I'll be keeping this one sealed and possibly adding it to a future giveaway. This really is a fantastic lip tint- considered one of the best especially for it's affordable price. The shades are very buildable, and the color lasts a really long time. If you're hunting for a good tint that won't break the bank, this is definitely the one.
Overall Thoughts
Mishibox costs $19.95 per month, and the August box has an estimated value of about $34. I say estimated because there is such a wide price variety out there for Korean beauty products. You can get these items much cheaper direct from Korean websites, however you also spend quite a bit of money on shipping charges. You can also occasionally find the for low prices on ebay and Amazon. Having said that, there are a lot of US-based websites that sell these items at their top retail value- so it's hard to officially judge here. I would say the average value of this box would probably be around $28. I don't think that value is mind-blowing, and unfortunately it seems to be a trend with Mishibox. They are a small company, so I also have to take into account the cost of packaging, shipping, curating etc.
I think that the August box is 100 times better than last month. While the July box seemed filled with inexpensive products from mostly unknown/uninteresting brands, this month features some well-known favorites and some interesting items from a familiar, yet relatively unknown brand. I think the curation is also much better this month, although the double emulsions was kind of odd. Overall, I was pleased with the products I received, and I think that objectively looking at this box from a kbeauty newbies perspective, it's all around pretty nice!

Having said that, my 3 month "trial period" is now over for Mishibox. After 3 months of subscribing to a service, I usually decide whether or not I want to continue to do so. While I think only one of the boxes out of the 3 was a dud, I still decided to cancel. Let me be clear that this is not because I have any major issues with Mishibox, but more so because I'm not seeing anything new or interesting here for me, personally. Since this subscription costs $20, I feel that money would be better spent on a newly released product that I can test and review for you guys rather than a box of things I don't really need.

Mishibox is a great service for those of you who are interested in kbeauty, but feel overwhelmed with all the brands and the 10+ step skincare routine. Like I always say with kbeauty subscriptions, they're excellent for helping you build your skincare collection and allowing you to test things out rather than taking a chance on buying full size items and finding out they don't work for you. I do still recommend Mishibox to anyone who fits the bill of "kbeauty curious" as I think their informative info cards and english-translated ingredients on their website each month make it even easier to start familiarizing yourself with kbeauty!
If you like what you see and are interested in subscribing to Mishibox, you can do so HERE.
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All thoughts and opinions in this blog post are genuine and belong to Harlot Beauty. No monetary compensation was received, although goods and/or services may have been provided and accepted for purpose of review. Post may contain affiliate or referral links.

2 comments:

  1. I don't think I've heard of Yadah - always interesting to try a new brand. I think Mishibox seems good for people who haven't sampled many K-beauty products before, but the current fans all probably have a TonyMoly lip tint and hand cream (or five) in their stash already, haha!

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    1. I think I got a couple of creams from Yadah toward the end of the old school Memeboxes and I thought they were an interesting brand, but we didn't get much more from them after that. I agree though- unless people just like getting a kbeauty present in the mail each month, if they already have a lot of stuff in their stash this subscription just seems repetitive. However while I wasn't a fan of last month's box, I think this one is really great for people who are new to korean beauty for sure!

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