NewBeauty Test Tube Showdown

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I'm not sure exactly how/why, but did you know there are TWO versions of the NewBeauty Test Tube? NewBeauty magazine's original tube is sold on their site and a QVC version is sold on their's. There is some product/brand overlap between the two, but they are NOT the same. If someone can explain to me how/why that came about, I'd love to know. In the meantime, though, I sampled both spring tubes to see which I would prefer:

The NewBeauty tube I received was very similar to the last one I got. Very similar as in a lot of the products were from the very same companies.

newbeautytube.jpg

The tube contained:
-copy of NewBeauty magazine (which I am not impressed with)
-gift cards for $50 off a $200 order, $25 off a $125 order, and $10 off a $60 order at SpaLook
-Olay® Regenerist Wrinkle Revolution Complex (.23 fl oz, estimated value $3.79)
-Memoire Liquide Soliel Liquide Fragrance and Fleur Liquid Body Cream (body cream was full-sized, estimated value $48, two perfumes were sample sized, estimated value $3.52)
-Perlier & Elariia Body Cream (full sized, estimated value $24.50)
-Moroccanoil Frizz Control (full sized, estimated value $32)
-Mally® Evercolor Shadow Stick in Platinum (full-sized, estimated value $25)
-SkinCeuticals Inside Out C E Ferulic and Sheer Physical Defense SPF 50 (small samples not labeled with weight, estimated value $15)
-ybf Plum Eye Liner (full-sized, estimated value $14.50)
-NeoStrata Skin Active Cellular Restoration (estimated value $22.57)
-Dr.Brandt Pore No More Vacuum Cleaner Blackhead Extractor (substitution for dr. brandt® signature BB Cream with Flexitone, estimated value $18)

Total estimated value: $206.88

Clearly, I can't complain about the value of these products. Nor can I complain about breadth--twp body creams, two cosmetics, a perfume, four skin care products, and a hair care product. I also loved the number of full-sized products included. My complaint is that the brands repeat those I've received from NewBeauty Test Tube in the past. My Spring 2011 tube contained two dr. brandt products. Summer 2011 included the very same dr. brandt product as this tube, as well as a lip liner from YBF and an eyeliner from Mally. Fall 2011 had yet another dr. brandt product, as well as a product from Moroccanoil. Given that the Test Tube only comes out four times a year, I'm surprised they can't find more companies to work with.

The QVC tube comes packaged exactly the same way as the NewBeauty tube. In it, I found:
-Peter Thomas Roth Laser Free Moisturizing Gel (.5 oz sample, estimated value $34)
-StiVectin-SD Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks & Wrinkles (.5 oz sample, estimated value $13.50)
-St. Tropez Everyday Gradual Tan for Body (2.5 oz, estimated value $11.19)
-WEN by Chaz Dean Sweet Almond Mint Cleansing Conditioner (6 oz, estimated value $10.88)
-bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash (2 oz, estimated value $4.39)
-Philosophy Amazing Grace Shampoo (2 oz, estimated value $2.15)
-Mally Beauty Evercolor Long Wearing Shadow Stick in Twilight (full-sized, value $25)
-tarte LipSurgence Lip Luster in Fever (full-sized, value $21.84)

Total estimated value: $122.95

So, the value of the QVC tube was quite a lot lower, mostly because of the smaller, sample-sized products it included rather than full-sized ones. However, the brands were, to my taste, better--certainly newer! With the exception of the duplicate Mally eye shadow stick (which was fine by me, because I absolutely LOVE the product), there was nothing included that I'd already seen in a NewBeauty tube. The breadth was also good--two cosmetics, two hair products, three face products, and a body product. And the products that were sample sized were all big enough to get some actual use from.

Were I recommending one of these tubes to someone totally new to them, I think I'd have to slightly favor the NewBeauty tube, just for value's sake. However, for myself, the QVC tube is a better deal, and it's the subscription I'll be keeping. If I get a couple more of them and see that they use the same brands over and over again, I may switch back, or cancel all together. For me, novelty is a really important factor in curated subscription programs being worthwhile. I like to get things I have never seen before and am excited to try, like the WEN cleansing conditioner I am itching to break out. I love old favorites too, of course (I'm never sad to see bliss, for example), but introductions to new products are absolutely key.

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