1 Year of LookFantastic Beauty Boxes: Worth it or Wasteful?

This March I received my 12th LookFantastic beauty box. Since this beauty box has a subscription plan that goes up to 12 months, I wanted to make a retrospective analysis of what I have received over the past year, so in case anyone is considering that subscription they might more or less know what to expect.

Did I find any new holy grails? Was there a lot of brand repetition? How’s the proportion of skin care vs makeup? How many products were just crap? How many full sizes?

Look no further, here are the stats:

So over the past year of Look Fantastic beauty boxes I’ve gotten a total of 73 products:

  • Tools: 11
  • Skincare: 29
  • Body care: 11
  • Haircare: 7
  • Makeup: 14
  • Nails: 1
Bet you didn’t expect to see a pie chart on a beauty post, did you? Hi, I’m a nerd.

Like many people say, this is a skincare heavy subscription box – the proof is in the pudding pie chart. Of the 29 skincare products there were multiple moisturizers (8), serums (4), masks (5 – of which 3 were sheet masks), and lip balms (3) – but there was also a micellar water, a hydrating essence, sunscreen, eye creams, etc.

When it came to makeup, I was glad no skintone specific products were sent out – there were primers(2), liquid lipsticks(2), eyeshadows(3 – including one quad), eyeliners (2), mascara, blush, even brow gel! There is indeed a lot of diversity in the offering. There were also 4 different makeup brushes and a complexion sponge (but I included those in the “tools” section).

The 73 products were from a total of 51 different brands, so obviously some brands were repeated throughout the duration of the subscription, although no brand was repeated more than three times. The brands ranged from drugstore to premium, and overall I think it was a balanced assortment. The most common were:

  • With 3 products each: Balance Me, Polaar, StarSkin, Eyeko, BrushWorks
  • With 2 products each: Ahava, Avant, Bellápierre, Bubble T, Glov, Illamasqua, Mádara, Magnitone, Percy & Reed, So Eco, Sleek, ThisWorks.

When it came to repetition, I didn’t really mind it – I really like some of the brands that appeared more often (Eyeko, Illamasqua, StartSkin), and they were always different products apart from Sleek. With Sleek they really risked getting some unsatisfied subscribers because in less than 6 months they sent out two liquid matte lipsticks, and if you were unlucky enough you could even have gotten the same shade! I’ve gotten two different shades and I actually like the formula, so personally, I’m not mad about it.

A big selling point of beauty subscription boxes is the value. This subscription is only £13 per month if you subscribe to a 12 month plan, and supposedly the box value is always a minimum of £50. Full size products, that are not tools nor sheet masks, were a total of 17, so on average more that 1 per box. Not bad at all.

So, did I discover any new holy grails? Yes, yes I did. I have not been able to try every single product; so far, I’ve tested out 40 products, and used up a total of 14. But of the ones I’ve tried, I can say I’m happy this subscription allowed me to try Eyeko products, a brand I’ve always been curious about but never really risked getting because there aren’t many reviews out there. Their brow gel has become my new favourite brow product, and their Galactic Lid Glosses are fantastic!

I also really, really love the Ameliorate Transforming Body Lotion – no other body cream has been able to make my skin so velvety soft. I’ll be getting a full size of that one. I was also made aware of StarSkin, a brand I wouldn’t have looked at twice and yet, came to find out, it’s the best I’ve tried when it comes to sheet masks.

I’ve also gotten to try the Ecooking Overnight Foot Cream – something that I would have totally overlooked otherwise and yet, I’ve loved it so much that I’m going to repurchase it too (I’ve run out of it two weeks ago and really miss it).

Some of the great finds.

Were there some absolute duds? Absolutely. The worst offender is probably the tweezer that came in my first box, from The Vintage Cosmetic Company. Terrible. Cuts the hairs instead of pulling them. The Aroma Blend Calming Mask that came in the June box was also pretty bad – too much lavender oil. Lavender may be calming for the senses (of some people) but it’s an irritant for the skin. The Mádara Deep Moisture Regenerating Night Cream was also something that was so off putting that it turned me off the brand completely – one of the first ingredients is denatured alcohol. For dry skin?? Ridiculous. And the Lord and Berry Line/Shade Glam Smooth eyeliner pencil in Gold is stiffer than a 19th century catholic school. But the good certainly outranks the bad, and a few duds here and there are to be expected.

In my opinion, I think it’s worth it. I have a massive skincare and makeup stash, and yet I’m discovering new things that I love with this subscription. I can see how it could become a source of clutter, specially if I’m not able to try the products at the same pace that they’re coming in, but so far, I’ve been enjoying the process. So it would make sense that I’d be renewing the subscription, right?

Well. I’d love to. BUT. I may be a very unlucky subscriber, but lately, my boxes have come without the booklet (it’s like a mini magazine, an edit produced by LookFantastic). I didn’t receive one in January or March, neither in paper nor in digital form, and it’s becoming really annoying. I actually enjoy reading the edit, and having a blog an’ all, it comes in handy because there’s always at least an interview with a brand owner and news of limited edition boxes to come. I’ve already complained, and the response I’ve gotten is that they’ll look into it (yet I’m still without the January or March edit), but it’ll all depend on the next box. If it comes without the booklet again, I won’t be renewing the subscription. Regardless of how worth it I think it is, the thing I value the most is good customer service. So we shall see.

5 thoughts on “1 Year of LookFantastic Beauty Boxes: Worth it or Wasteful?

  1. As much as I love skincare and makeup, I have never subscribed to any beauty box. After reading your post, maybe I should reconsider. This subscription from Look Fantastic looks like a really good value for money.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I love both skincare and makeup. I try to buy more sensibly than I used to, specially with skincare, buy whenever I finish a product. I think twice before buying anything (do I really need this now?) That’s why I never subscribed to any beauty boxes, I realky don’t need any more than what already have. But who knows, maybe in the future because they are a great way to discover new beauty products at an affordable price.

        Liked by 1 person

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