Curated subscription review: The Look Bag

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Beauty curated subscription service The Look Bag follows the model set up by Birchbox. For $10/month, members are sent 5 "luxury beauty samples." The products are tailored to match your "personal beauty profile" by "Celebrity Beauty Therapist and Eyebrow King" Damone Roberts. Bags should arrive within the first two weeks of every month.

My first Look Bag experience didn't *quite* meet expectations. I signed up for the service on March 19, at which time I received an email stating that "within the first two weeks of every month, you will receive an assortment of 5 different high-end beauty samples in a luxurious bag." On April 16 (not within the first two weeks of April), I received this, packed in a padded mailing envelope:

look bag 1.jpg

To my mind, the pink organza bag the products were packed is not a "luxurious" bag. The mailing envelope shoved in my mailbox was certainly not luxury packaging. On the website, the models are shown holding substantial sized boxes with Look Bag logos on them--more like what Birchbox does--and that is what I was expecting. So the packaging, and the time of shipping, were both slightly disappointing.

But what about the products themselves? I received:

look bag 2.jpg

-Pur-lisse Pur~Protect SPF 30, .5 oz sample (estimated value $12.94): I was excited about this, as I think Pur-lisse is a good brand and I am excited to try any moisturizer with a high SPF, in the hopes of finding something that works like sunscreen without feeling or smelling like sunscreen.

-CoCo Cosmetics Jovie Jubilee Body Lotion, 2 oz sample (estimated value $4): Not so jazzed about this one, as it's a lower end lotion and the smell doesn't do anything for me. Probably going into the giveaway box.

-Laura Mercier Perfecting Water Rich, .34 oz sample (estimated value $1.93): This is an interesting sample--it's a water you put on before moisturizer/mixed with moisturizer to make it more moisturizing. It's a smallish sample, so not a huge value, but something I'll be interested to try, and I like Laura Mercier a lot as a brand.

-Orofluido Beauty Elixer, .17 oz sample (estimated value $1.31): I have a sample of this hair oil from a Birchbox a few months ago, and I like and use it, so I was happy to see this. The sample seems small at less than 1/2 oz, but a little of this stuff goes a long, long way, so it's good for quite a few uses. I'm finding hair oils to be a lifesaver for my pregnancy/humidity frizz issues.

-Virga BotanicalsWater Garden perfume sample: I don't like perfume samples. This one is made by an indie business, which is cool, but it's a heavy floral, which I wouldn't be into even if I did like perfume samples. It's also just a little umarked vial, which seems like an afterthought and not very professional from a packaging standpoint.

All in all, I feel really mixed about this bag. I was unimpressed by the packaging and shipping, and found two of the five samples to be fairly worthless. The other three samples, however, were all things I'll be interested to use, in quantities that are useful. The total value is approximately $20, which is reasonable, though not as high as I'd like (and low compared to other subscription services like Birchbox). I did find the products to be more similar than I'd like--no makeup, three skin care products, one hair care product, and a perfume--but that may change over time. I'll be keeping an open mind on this one and seeing what the next few installments bring before I make a decision as to whether to keep or cancel it.

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