Wednesday, January 23, 2013

January 2013 Must Have Popsugar Box Review!

Hey everyone! 

Happy new year! 

Hope everyone's resolutions are going well. I decided that mine would be not to bring home any snacks or desserts from grocery shopping, but still allow myself to indulge in a dessert if I go out to eat. I tend to do a lot of stress eating at home, so instead of grabbing a bag of chips or some ice cream out of the freezer, I'll have to turn to real food if I'm hungry. Hopefully this will help me shed some pounds this year.

Anyway, speaking of resolutions, that was kind of what the theme of the Must Have Popsugar Box was geared around this month! I just got mine in today, which I was really excited about.

Quick rundown of the things you should know about the Must Have Popsugar Box:
- $35 a month (It used to be $30, but I guess they've bumped it up this year)
- Lifestyle box for women

- Guarantees at least $100 worth of items every month
- Shipped by FedEx, then tendered to USPS at final destination
- Referral program (Get 2 friends to join, get one month free. Then, get 3 more friends to join and get 3 months free)

January Must Have Popsugar Box Unboxing!

Cute wrapping paper with an "Enjoy!" sticker on it.

Foldable catalog that highlights each product:
They don't include the retail prices of everything though.

A $15 off purchase voucher code for Casetagram (Voucher Code: PSNWJ6HF), which is a website that you can use to customize your own cell phone case or tablet case. I won't be using my code, so whoever would like to use it, can! Unfortunately, it says it only works for Must-Have subscribers only, although I'm not sure how they would keep track of that sort of thing. The cases are $34.95 at retail price, so you'd still have to pony up about $20 (plus shipping, maybe) to redeem one. I also got a coupon for $1.00 off two Think Thin Bars, which I might use if I end up liking the bars.

What was in this month's box?

This month's items:

Popbar Hot Chocolate On a Stick in Milk and Dark Chocolate Flavor ($2.99/each):
I'm excited to try these, although I'm a little disappointed in the fact that it's just solid pieces of chocolate that you melt in hot milk. It's a novel concept, but not that innovative, in my opinion. I wish we had been able to try a flavor that was fun and funky at least, especially at 230 calories a bar (not even counting the milk or little marshmallow bits I plan to put in it)! It's definitely not good for my diet, but hopefully it'll be good for my soul. I do love the chocolate. I'll update once I decide to try it.

Think Thin Divine Bar in Dark Chocolate Coconut ($2.00/bar):

Think Thin Bar in Creamy Peanut Butter ($2.00/bar):

Think Thin Crunch Bar in Caramel Chocolate Dipped Mixed Nuts ($2.00/bar):
This one was the first one I tried and it was really delicious. Not overly sweet, but just enough to satisfy you if you are looking for something sweet. I enjoyed the crunch of the nuts and whole almonds. There was a layer of chocolate on the bottom of the bar, which also added to its tastiness. I'm not sure where it would stand in my daily food log though... I had it for lunch, although I think it tastes more like a dessert.

.:I will definitely update when I try these, which should be soon. I've heard that Think Thin bars are good, so I'm going in with high expectations.:.

Jet-Puffed Vanilla Mallow Bits ($6.50/3 oz):
These are cute and taste just like the marshmallows in Lucky Charm Cereal. I might actually sneak these into my Nutrisystem cereal more than anything else, although there is a delicious sounding recipe for hot cocoa cookies on the back, which I might try one day. Maybe. I definitely plan on using them with my Popbar Hot Chocolate that came in the box.

Epicuren Discovery Lip Balm in Tea Tree Oil ($9.50/0.25 oz):
I am a fan of lip balms. Living in Arizona, you always need lip balm all year round. This one has an SPF 15, which is nice, and also contains tea tree oil and aloe vera. Mine was a little leaky when I opened it, like the tea tree oil was running out. It might have been from sitting in my hot mailbox. I don't like that it came in a pot, since I hate having to wash my hands first before I use it every time, but once I opened it, I realized why it has to come in that form. It has a very ointment-like texture to it, almost like petroleum jelly (although it contains none of that). I rather like how smooth it goes on because of this, but I prefer a stick form of lip balm only because it's so much more convenient. Tea tree oil has a very distinct smell, which might not be for everyone. I know I didn't like the smell at first, but I've grown to like it now. Henry likes to use it in his shampoos, but I'm not sure if he'd be willing to kiss me if I had this on. I like that they make my lips feel tingly though, as if you're putting on peppermint. In terms of how well it prevents and soothes chapped lips, I will have to update to let you know.

The Remix Timebomb Watch in Black ($44.95):
So I was disappointed to see a watch in the box, only because I'm not a watch kind of girl. Most everyone uses their cell phones nowadays to look at the time anyway, even the people who wear watches! It is an accessory though, and I'm not the best person to be a judge of this since I don't accessorize very often. My first impressions of the watch was that I thought it seemed pretty cheap, like something I could buy in Chinatown (but never would). The very first thing I saw was that it lit up with different color LED lights (see video below), so that was a little cool. It also has a distinct ticking sound, which would drive me nuts if I was trying to have some quiet study time. The silicone band, which is interchangeable, also seemed to catch a lot of dust and lint (not attractive). Also, the watch is HUGE on me. It's definitely not low key, but some people might like that about it. I think I will probably end up letting Henry have it, if he wants. Some other things about the watch... the battery can be changed if you unscrew the back, and it is a "splash-proof" watch, which basically means that you can maybe get some water on it while washing your hands, but anything more than that could mean damaging the watch. It also has a 90 day limited warranty, but it only covers if it was a manufacturer defect. There are a lot of great watches out there if someone wanted to pay for one which look way better, do more things, and are water-resistant. I wish they had spent this $45 on a better item, instead of giving us a mediocre one.

.: Update - Success! After showing Henry the watch, he said he would wear it, and got even more excited when I showed him that it lit up. He's not a picky guy, so I'm lucky in that sense. Now the watch won't go to waste. :) :.

Merrithew Stability Ball 65" in Green ($38.99):
It was really odd for me to see this in our box because I feel like a stability ball isn't a one-size fit all item. There are different size balls you should get depending on your height (read more here), as a wrong size reduces the benefits of the ball and can actually increase your risk for injury. I, being 5'1-1/2", have to use a 45" diameter ball. Luckily, I have one already at home, which is in my size. I feel like a good majority of females own a stability ball, which also puzzled me as to why they would choose this as an item in our box. The thought of trying to make exercising easy at home is nice, but you actually need a fair amount of room to use one, which not a lot of people have. They also included a card with some basic exercises to give a person who's never worked with one some direction. They also suggest swapping it out for your regular desk chair to improve posture, which does work, but I know that my old company wouldn't let me swap it out at work as they didn't want to be responsible for any injuries. I'm not sure how lenient other companies are with this rule, but I feel like if you can't sit on it where you spend the most time sitting on it, it's not very useful in that way. I will probably save this to give away for a white elephant gift next Christmas or something. Just disappointed because they definitely could have given us something better in place of this.

Total Value:
($126.94 w/ voucher code)

Overall, I was a little disappointed in this month's box... but maybe that's just because I would really only have one practical item to put to use, and that would be the lip balm. The stability ball was an odd choice for them to pick, in my opinion, since people of different heights would require different sizes. The watch I wouldn't wear, only because it's just so... big, and bulky. But maybe Henry will wear it sometime. I guess I lucked out getting a black color since that's unisex. I would never purchase that particular watch for myself or Henry in real life though, especially for it's steep price tag and cheap feeling quality. I did like that they put some of the Think Thin Bars in our box so I would be able to try different flavors, but I get a lot of these types of bars in my Conscious Box, so I was hoping for more practical items like in December's Must Have box. The marshmallow bits and hot chocolate bars are an interesting concept, but I would have rather had something else in its place, since it doesn't help me much with my no snacks or dessert at home resolution. Hopefully next month's will be better, although I'm a little sad since I was hoping this month would have some Valentine's Day stuff in it since we will be getting our boxes late next month after Valentine's Day.

I will still continue my subscription to Popsugar though, since I feel like the value of the box definitely outweighs the cost. They guarantee that the items are worth up to $100, so I do like that aspect of it. Although I was overall disappointed with the box, I'm sure there are others who loved it. It just didn't hit my demographic this time. I would still highly recommend getting a Popsugar Must Have box as a subscription, since there are boxes that I saw reviews on where I would have absolutely loved getting one. I thought December's was great!

If you'd like to sign up for a Popsugar Must Have Box, click here, and use code "REFERFRIENDS" to get $5 off your first box! Using my link helps me earn free months, which is nice, because I love doing reviews for you guys and eventually Henry will make me cut down on some... which means I won't be able to do any more reviews on Popsugar's box. Sad face. So please use it! It'd be mighty appreciated. ^_^

As always, thanks for reading!



  1. After seeing all the different Must Have Popsugar boxes and finally subscribing to my first one, I was pretty disappointed too. I'm not much of an fitness person so the stability ball wasn't my taste. The watch was just like you said--too big and too bulky. I would even say too ugly. I can't imagine many women liking the watch but what do I know? I like dark chocolate so I enjoyed those selections but that was pretty much it.

    Oh well. No worries. I'll just try again. I think I'll try for 2 more months...which brings up a good question for you. How many months would you stay unsatisfied with a subscription box before you decide to cancel it?

    Love your reviews Nina! Keep 'em coming!

    1. Thanks for the support, Hillary!! That's a good question. I have to say if there are more months that I've been dissatisfied with it than satisfied out of all the months I've had total, than I would consider cancelling it. If it's a subscription that I've just signed up for, and received 3 months in a row that I haven't been super excited about, then I would cancel. I cancelled Pawbox for that reason, and I think what will be next is Loot Crate. I was really excited about it in the beginning but now the crates are just not up to par for what I expect out of a box that costs $20 a month. I will probably be cancelling Henry's after next month since we are on a 3-month plan, our last month till the next renewal is February, and then I'll probably cancel. I'll be sad if a pokemon theme comes out, but really, I could purchase anything that Loot Crate puts in their boxes myself if I wanted at about the same price. What makes a subscription box special is that you get to try hard to find samples or that you get to try things at a big discount, in my opinion. Even though Birchbox's value isn't always as high as Ipsy's, I usually like their choice of samples that they choose to send to me, which is why I haven't cancelled yet. I'm hoping Popsugar doesn't disappoint next month!

  2. The January box was my 2nd Popsugar Must Have box so far and I was also kind of disappointed! I can't believe they would choose to have the most expensive item in the box (the watch) to be something that would look terrible on people w/smaller wrists, which I imagine would be quite a few of their subscribers. I quite liked the stability ball, however. Hopefully next month will be better though! Keep the reviews coming :)

    1. Thanks Liz! I'm glad you liked the stability ball! I totally agree with you about the watch... It's not very attractive, and didn't seem very well built to me either. I really wish they had given us something else in place of it. I'll definitely keep reviewing for as long as I possibly can! :)