Tuesday, October 29, 2013

September and October 2013 SeasonsBox - Unboxing and Review

My annual SeasonsBox subscription has become a roller coaster ride in terms of consistency of product, packaging, and service. Ever since SeasonsBox changed ownership and started shipping out of the U.S., there has been a decline in both quality and customer service. In this blog post, I review the September and October boxes. I was actually ok about the September box (except for the packaging), but the October box was shockingly bad... and I didn't feel I could review the two separately as the October box has completely tainted my view of this subscription service. I'm no longer excited about receiving this box - instead, I just want my annual subscription to run its course (if the company even lasts that long). The next time I want to prepay annually for a box, please slap me silly. This review is going to be brief - I don't feel this subscription service is worth the time and effort it takes to individually photograph and review each product.

The September box was lackluster, but what really stood out (and not in a good way) was the packaging. The contents of the September box was haphazardly thrown together with only one crumpled up sheet of craft paper. What happened to the beautiful presentation?

To be clear, I don't have an issue with the individual brands included in the SeasonsBox. I will still keep an open mind about the quality of the products, and I will review each one on its own merits.

1. Made From Earth Vitamin Enhanced Moisturizer
2 oz // $74.99
I have no idea why this cream retails for such a high price. The scent is strong and is quite medicinal in nature. I've only used this product once and the scent really bothers me; however, it does fade to a bit of a nutty scent. Similar to the Aloe Vera Skin Treatment from my July SeasonsBox, this product leaves my skin feeling greasy. It's not a big deal because I apply it just before I go to bed, but it's still not the most comfortable.

2. Raaka Virgin Chocolate in Vanilla Rooibos
1.2 oz // $4.95
I just started a mild cleanse (no caffeine, alcohol, chocolate/candy, chips, etc.), so I have not tasted this myself. My hubby tried it and said it tastes funky... he normally does not complain about food unless it's really bad.

3. Deep Steep Body Butter in Brown Sugar & Vanilla
6 oz // $10.95
I liked the Deep Steep product I received in my May SeasonsBox, so this was my favourite product in this month's box. This body butter is very creamy and soft. It is not fast absorbing, but thankfully it is not greasy in the slightest. The scent is stronger than I normally like but it is not unpleasant.

Now let's move on to the disastrous October box. I have not recorded my YouTube review yet, but I will post the video here once it is ready.

While the September box was not too exciting, at least the products were full size and worth the value of the box. The October box was not, and this really irks me for 2 reasons:

A) The October box only included 2 full size products. The other 2 were samples. SeasonsBox promises 3-5 full size products each month.
B) The October box had a value of $18 total. Not only that, but SeasonsBox has increased the prices for Canadian subscribers to $44.90 per month or $49.95 for a one-time purchase. This is the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. I can tolerate late shipping, shoddy packaging, and lackluster products, but I question the ethics of selling a box with <$20 value for nearly $50.

I've e-mailed SeasonsBox about both these issues, but I have not heard back. I will follow up, but I'm not sure I'll receive a response. [Edited to add: SeasonsBox has since provided a response - the e-mails are included in the description box of my YouTube video.] SeasonsBox has been doing a major cleanup of its Facebook page, removing the ability to post and deleting all "negative" comments.

Let's move on to the actual products:

1. Tea Forte Luci Loose Leaf Tea Infuser in Spring Grass
1 Infuser // $12
I was actually very excited about this product, and I do like it for the most part. The build quality is not great, but it does the job. I read reviews that the infuser does not screw tightly enough to the ceramic cone piece so tea leaves come out when steeping. I've used this infuser twice - the first time, it worked perfectly, but I did have some leaves escape into my tea the second time.

2. Dryad Tea in Fall Court
0.3 oz sample // $2
I love tea so I was excited to try one scented with pumpkin, but I could not believe the size of this product! I haven't brewed this tea yet, but I took a whiff of it and there is not much of a scent.

3. Somerville Soap Works Cider Spice Soap
1 oz sample // $1
This soap was not even in its paper wrapper when I opened up the box. I guess it had fallen out in transit. This soap is teeny tiny... and it doesn't smell like much. There's a faint spice scent, but it also smells a little stale.

4. Molly Rose Vegan Pumpkin Cider Lip Balm
4.25 g // $3
This is my favourite item in the October SeasonsBox! I am really enjoying this lip balm - it goes on buttery smooth, and I love the oval shape (it reminds me of my Crawford Street Skin Care and Filthy Farmgirl lip balms). It smells incredible and has no flavour.

Note: I purchased a one year subscription to SeasonsBox with my own money.

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