Laura Mercier

My Little Parisienne Box

I went a little crazy with beauty boxes after arriving in the UK last year.  Beauty subscription boxes were never available in Australia before, so I made the most of being London based and signed myself up to both Glossybox and Birchbox, (I reviewed both here). After about 6 months I ended up with an overload of samples I would never use and a very well stocked travel beauty bag. I decided there were only so many sample sized products one woman could ever need and so I cancelled my subscriptions.

This year whilst browsing Instagram, a beauty box that Ruth Crilly from A Model Recommends posted caught my eye. It was gorgeous. It was Parisian. It needed to be mine. My Little Box started in France only and browsing their website (which was only in French .. a language I do not speak), was both fascinating and frustrating. Here was a company that had taken beauty boxes to the next level. The samples were from amazing brands and they also included divine little lifestyle products of their own gorgeous design.

When I heard they were expanding to deliver to the UK I couldn't sign up fast enough. Having just received my first box last week, I am thrilled. Here is what was inside:


Each box is centred around a theme, and this months theme is Paris. Once the ribbon was unwrapped the first little treat was this gorgeous notebook which included a few pages of the My Little Box's background story, beautifully illustrated of course. Oh and look at the stickers too. 


Next up was a really lovely neoprene laptop cover. Love love love this! But I wish my i-pod fitted inside as I don't own a laptop. Boo. 


And then we move on to the beauty portion of the box, which included three very good and well sized products. Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse is a product that needs no introduction, it is a cult Parisian pharmacy staple, a dry oil which you can use on the face, body or in your hair.  Laura Mercier foundation primer is always in my makeup kit, so this was another welcome inclusion. The final product was a My Little Beauty's own brand, the Stylo Lumiere which is a highlighting pen along the lines of YSL's Le Touche Eclat. I'm really pleased as I know I will get use out of all of these products.


I'm already looking forward to next month's box. You can sign up to My Little Box here if you like in the UK and would like a monthly fix to satisfy your inner Francophile.

Oh and I will leave you on this note - this sticker was on the inside of the box and it speaks to me loud and clear!


Sephora and UK Shipping

When I found out the Sephora USA site was now shipping to the UK I literally ran to my computer to see what I could buy. You think i'm joking but I assure you I am not. On my last trip to New York, over the course of 4 days I made about 6 trips to Sephora and came away with multiple items on each visit - such is my love for the place, and for the US prices.


Sadly as I clicked away on the site, my excitement slowly dissipated. There are a lot of brands that do not ship to the UK, including Hourglass, Laura Mercier, Kate Somerville, NARS and any nail polishes. The other annoying thing is it doesn't alert you to the fact that it can't be shipped to your location until you hit the check-out screen. On the plus side Clinique does ship as does Marc Jacobs Beauty. I wanted to pop a few Clinique products in my bag to see how the prices compare once you add in the taxes.

I have been lusting over the All About Shadow palette by Clinique. It retails for £32 here and the online Sephora price is £22.82. I also did a price comparison on the Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey which retails for £17 in the UK, the online Sephora price being £9.51.

Marc Jacobs Beauty is still not available to purchase in the UK, so buying this online is obviously a big bonus.

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Sephora are charging a £10 flat rate shipping fee if you spend over £75. The important thing to note is that they still apply duty and tax to your order at the check-out. I was charged an additional £20.97 for my order on top of the shipping fee, making it an additional £30.97 all in (ouch). You can see the breakdown below.


It's a shame but not a surprise that this was too good to be true. I am still really excited to receive my order but I won't be placing future orders unless it is for something truly exceptional that you can't buy in the UK.

Battle of the Beauty Boxes - Birchbox and Glossybox Reveals

I subscribe to both Birchbox and Glossybox here in London and often post pictures of the boxes on Instagram. Lately I have realised that a lot of my readers in Australia don't actually know what they are. So for those who haven't heard of them, they are boxes of beauty samples which get sent to you each month.

They usually contain 5 sample sized products however sometimes you get a full sized product and sometimes you get little extras thrown in. I subscribe on a month to month basis and the cost is £10 a month plus postage (total cost £12.95). When you sign up you fill out a profile about your preferences on skin type, makeup etc. then each month you get sent a lovely box of goodies. There are quite a few companies doing them now but Birchbox and Glossybox seem to be the biggest and the originals.

The boxes as they arrive in the post

The boxes as they arrive in the post

I have been subscribing for about 5 months now and find them to be really hit and miss. I do love being sent them but I do often end up with products that i'm not going to use. I think Birchbox comes out in front for me for having brands I have actually heard of in their boxes, however Glossybox definitely win on the presentation and reliability fronts. I have done a little comparison of the two boxes I have been sent in November for you to see. 

The Glossybox revealed inside ....

The Glossybox revealed inside ....

The Birchbox revealed ....

The Birchbox revealed ....

Sometimes they do themed boxes (eg. London Fashion Week, Summer etc). Glossybox do amazing packaging on their themed boxes. November however was a standard month so these both have the standard packaging.

Glossybox ... always amazing presentation

Glossybox ... always amazing presentation

Birchboxes have an inner draw-string bag which holds the goodies

Birchboxes have an inner draw-string bag which holds the goodies


The November Glossybox contained - Vichy Idealia Life Serum, Emite Makeup Eyeshadow in Dams, Yves Rocher France Hand Cream, Elegant Touch Rapid Dry for Nails and Complete Long-lasting Nail Polish in Moleskin.

Glossybox contents

Glossybox contents

I am actually quite pleased with what is in this box. I have been looking for a nail drying spray so i'm happy I don't have to go out and buy one. Hand cream always gets used in this climate, so that is a good inclusion. The nail polish colour is ok. I don't love it but will give it a try to see what it looks like on. The Vichy skincare will go straight into my makeup kit to use on jobs as I tend not to dabble too much with new skin products. The eye shadow is a good neutral colour that i'm sure I will use.

The November Birchbox contained - Laura Mercier Body Butter in Vanilla, Weleda Replenishing Oat Shampoo, Chella Highlighting Pencil, Spa Find Bust Serum, English Laundry perfume sample, 3 x Pukka Herbs tea-bags and a Birchbox Pencil Sharpener.

Birchbox contents

Birchbox contents

Again, I am pleasantly surprised by this month's box. I love Laura Mercier so i'm sure i'm going to enjoy using this moisturiser. Weleda is another great brand that I know and love and I always use mini shampoos when I travel. The highlighting pencil will go into my makeup kit. The bust serum is a little strange but I will give it a go. I don't love getting perfume samples and don't really use them so it's a no on that. The pencil sharpener is handy and I will pop the tea-bags in the cupboard as i'm not a tea drinker.

Both Glossybox and Birchbox have shop sections on their website where you can buyt the full-sized products of what you have been sent. I must admit, I am yet to purchase any of the products I have tried. 

Some beauty boxes have just launched in Australia offering a similar service. Bella Box  looks quite good, and costs $15 a month with free shipping. I was impressed by the listing of brands they include. There is also Violet Box  which is priced a fair bit higher at $22.95 with free shipping, and it also looks to have good brands included. I would love to hear from anyone who subscribes to either of these, so please comment below if you do.