Nina Garcia Quarterly #NGQ03 Review


Nina Garcia Quarterly
The Breakdown:
Monthly | Cost: $100/quarter
Home, beauty, fashion, and lifestyle items.
Ships via USPS | Ships to everywhere!


I only received my shipping email yesterday so I totally didn’t expect to receive my box today! I thought for sure that it would arrive on Saturday at the earliest since there’s no mail tomorrow due to July 4th.


But here it is!


First look.


Spenglish Muito Cool Baseball Cap ($???) – If you’ll remember, we also received a Spenglish item in the last box – the Muy Cool t-shirt! This was the World Cup item that she hinted toward and while I appreciate that there is a World Cup item at all, I have to say that I’m disappointed. I love football and so I was definitely hoping for an item that was more specific to the World Cup. But since her box is geared toward fashion and not football, I can understand why she included this as a sort of middle ground for her subscribers.

I don’t think I’ll wear this because I don’t support the Brazil NT (and I actually have a Germany DFB baseball cap that I’d much rather wear to represent my NT hehehe), but this is a nice momento to keep for the 2014 World Cup. (PS: Muito Cool = very cool in Portuguese, which is the official language of Brazil).


It’s green on the bottom!


Koku Pouch ($108.83) – This is made of 100% colored cotton, a raffia fringe, and a plexiglass decoration. I can’t find this exact pouch online but it was made exclusively for this box and Nina Garcia! Maybe I’m not fashion-forward enough to appreciate the raffia fringe, but it feels really cheap to me… and it reminds me of those grade school leis. Personally I think it would be better off without the fringe because the pouch itself is really well-made. But what do I know? XD

I didn’t bother taking a photo of the back of this pouch because it’s the same as the front (pictured above, just without a plexiglass decoration). There were variations in the color of the pouch and the plexiglass decoration. So far I’ve seen blue pouches and shark plexiglass decorations!

UPDATE 7/7: Thanks to Ramblings of a Surburban Mom, who found a very similar clutch here! This is… kind of crazy? Hahaha, I guess you’re paying for the brand name and the design, but wow. $108.83 and it’s on sale.


I had to get a really weird lighting for this to show up on camera, but there’s a really weird stain/marking on the plexiglass that’s very noticeable when you see it in person so I’m going to have to ask Quarterly about this because it looks damaged to me. (I tried using water to rub it off, thinking it was something sticky… but it looks like the plexiglass might have melted?)


Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration SPF 30 (6 fl oz, $8.92 at Walmart) – I have to say that I was surprised by the inclusion of this item. Not because of what it is, but because of the brand. When you buy a $100 box from someone as tasteful as Nina Garcia, you wouldn’t expect to find a drugstore brand. But… sunscreen was predictable seeing as how this box was centered around summer/Brazil/tropical themes. It’s not exciting but it will be used.


Organic Shave Gel by Surya Brasil (200 ml, $20.39) – Now this is more what I would expect from Nina Garcia! This is vegan, non-GMO, and cruelty free. It smells amazing and tropical. But the best of all? It’s HUGE. There is so much shave gel in here, it’ll last you until next summer!


Joico K-Pak Intense Hydrator (250 ml, $19.99) – Another amazingly sized product! This looks like a salon-quality product (and it actually smells like a salon, hahaha). It’s supposed to moisturize your hair to make it healthier and shinier. I suppose you could use it like a conditioner or a hair mask depending on your usual routine. No, but seriously, this is a very generous size and you can definitely get a lot of uses out of it.


Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray (75 ml, $21.50) – I’ve seen this go out in a couple other subscription boxes, but have never received it. I’m kind of on the fence about this item because I don’t really use hair styling products. However, Nina says you can use this like a dry shampoo while giving volume and texture to your hair so I’ll definitely have to give this a try. I do have to say that I love the design on the bottle. The contrast of black and gold is amazing.


Calvin Klein One Pure Color Lipstick in Dollface ($16.00) – I’m currently really getting into lipsticks so I was really excited to see this in the box! It smells like vanilla and sugar and… You know what it really smells like? It smells like the sugar stick you get in your Fun Dip. In other words, AMAZING. It’s also quite moisturizing and I really love the shade that I received. It’s subtle enough to be natural, but also add that extra hint of color. I believe there were variations in the shade you could have received for this item!




So gorgeous.


Formula X Nail Lacquer for Sephora in Push The Limits (12 ml, $10.50) – Nail polish, we meet again. This wasn’t really a surprise to me as Nina has sent out a nail polish in all of her boxes so far. Unfortunately for me, it means that there will always be an item for me to trade. But I’m sure most of her subscribers are really happy to try out a new nail polish every quarter!


Push The Limits.


Palm Tree Print Clutch by Print All Over Me ($???) – I was really surprised to see not one, but TWO clutches in one box. I mean, I’ll never say no to a clutch or make-up bag but I definitely didn’t expect to receive two. It’s a really beautiful print and it’s made from canvas. I think this one is definitely better than the Koku pouch and is reminiscent of the clutch that Popsugar sent out in their Limited Edition Summer box. But I’m pretty sure this one is much smaller in comparison.

I’m guessing this was also made just for Nina’s box because while there are items with this exact print on the Print All Over Me website, there aren’t any clutches available for sale.

I also didn’t bother taking a photo of the back of this clutch because the print is the exact same on both sides!


The inside.


Red Flower Italian Blood Orange Refreshing Hand & Face Towelette ($5) – I had no idea that one of these towelettes retailed for $5. I thought for sure that these weren’t that expensive (which was why I thought there would be two or three in the box for us to use), but I should have known better! I bet it smells amazing (I mean, how can you go wrong with something that is Italian Blood Orange scented?) and I’m going to put this in my bag.


Otterbox Gift Card ($49.95) – This is a gift card to the Otterbox website redeemable for a FREE Symmetry case in the Brazilian Pop! design, which was inspired by Nina Garcia! You can get a case for your iPhone 5/5S or your Samsung Galaxy S5.


I have heard a lot of fantastic reviews for Otterbox cases and how protective they are, but I have never bought one because I didn’t want to spend upwards of $50 for a case. XD But now that I can… I’m definitely going for it! I currently have an iPhone 5S and I really prefer subtle cases (my case right now is just a pure black case), but I really love this design and the colors. Plus, with a case as bright as this I’ll find my phone in no time when it’s in my bag.

And I think right now Otterbox is running a promotion that allows you to get a free dry box with any purchase, so I’m going to see if it will work with this gift card!

*UPDATE: You cannot get the free dry box with this coupon code. 😦 Make sure to add the dashes to the code when you’re entering it in or else it won’t be accepted! Shipping is free so you don’t have to worry about that. 🙂 Also, the code expires on 8/31/2014, so be sure to use it by then.

*UPDATE #2: Apparently you CAN get the free dry box??? I can’t confirm it, but other people have reported that it will be added to your cart. Also, you can apparently use it on ANY Symmetry case, so you can actually get a different color as long as it’s the same style. I also can’t personally confirm this, but it’s worth a try!


Desk Ornament by Melissa ($???) – Okay, so. This… this is not… anything I expected. This is literally just a plastic shoe. A plastic shoe. I mean, this feels like I’m Cinderella and instead of getting a glass shoe from my fairy godmother, her wand broke and I ended up with a plastic doll shoe. XD


In her letter it says that this is a desk ornament from the Brazilian shoe designer Melissa, who has worked with designers such as Vivienne Westwood and architect Zaha Hadid. But I’m having a hard time picturing anyone who would put this on their desk. I mean, it’s one thing to buy mini model cars of the sports car or race car you love, but to put a plastic shoe on your desk? Nah.

There were also variations for this particular item.

Maybe I’m not savvy enough when it comes to fashion to appreciate this, but if you’re receiving this box/if you have received your box, please sound off below in the comments below and let me know what you think of this because I’m honestly having a hard time thinking of how anyone would enjoy this. (SORRY NINA, I SWEAR I LOVE YOUR QUARTERLY BOXES! AND YOUR PASSION FOR FOOTBALL AND STAR WARS.)


OKAY SO… here’s more information about the plastic shoes, courtesy of IffB on MUT!

Melissa is a big shoe brand in Brazil, like Havaianas. I remember it back in the 70’s with a early version of plastic slip ons like the gold minis, that were super popular with the kids. Melissa apparently continues to be very popular in a niche market, kind if like Crocs, and thought out the years, they have colaborated with different designers and architects on the design of their shoes. 

These miniatures were just launched as a collectors item this month honoring these colaborations. They will be selling for about $30 each, and, according to the Facebook posts I see, they are either hated or loved… Just like this box!

I think if this information was included in the letter, more people would have been placated with the plastic shoe in their box. And to be honest, the more I look at mine, the more it grows on me. XD I guess you have to give it time! But regardless, it’s a cool collaboration between Melissa and well-known designers! PS: smell your shoe! No I’m not joking, hahaha. It’s actually scented!


Okay, now let’s end this review on two positive notes!


FRENDS Ella Gold-Tone Earphones ($100) – This was the $100 Net-A-Porter item she hinted at in her first spoiler! These are absolutely gorgeous and these alone cover the entire cost of the box. It looks like the earphones get pretty good reviews so I’m excited about them. But because I just opened a brand new pair of Skullcandy Bombshell earphones (that I received in my last Birchbox order), I will have to hold off on opening these for the time being.


Just beautiful packaging.




So pretty. *___*


NEST Fragrances Grapefruit Votive Candle (2 oz/57 g, $14) – This smells absolutely divine. It smells so good that I want to eat it. I’m not a candle person by any means and I always hear people talking about how amazing Nest candles are… and now I know why. I can’t stop smelling it because it just captures the scent of grapefruit so beautifully. And grapefruit is one of my favorite scents. I don’t know if I even want to burn this because I just want to keep it at my desk and keep smelling it. XD

There was also variation in the scent you could have received! I believe you could have received Sicilian Tangerine or Bamboo.


“Pink pomelo grapefruit and watery green nuances blend with lily of the valley and coriander blossom.”



Overall value: $375.12 (not including the values for the palm tree clutch, the plastic shoe, or the baseball cap)

Overall enjoyment: The only low point was the plastic shoe, but everything else (yes even the spray on sunscreen) is awesome! I’m not a summer person by any means, but I think this is a fantastic box and that Nina Garcia has done it again. The value of this box is covered by one item and everything else can be considered extra. Also… the value calculated above doesn’t even include all the items and it’s already 3.75x the cost of the box! I will say that I am sad that there wasn’t a jewelry item in this box, but that’s just because I’m greedy, hehehe. 🙂

I am so looking forward to her fall box because fall is inarguably my favorite season, thus I have high hopes!

In my opinion, Nina Garcia’s box always beats Popsugar’s Limited Edition boxes, despite the two boxes having the same price point at $100. I also find that it’s really easy to trade for or buy the items from the Popsugar box, whereas it’s harder to find items from Nina Garcia’s box.

PS: If you’d like, you can read my review of NGQ02 here!



      1. haha yeah. like if you accidentally threw them in the washer… “fuck.”
        $100 down the drain, so to speak.

  1. That fish bag makes me go really? WT?
    The shoe thing – dust collector really I can’t wear heels so I don’t know – oh yeah Swap!
    I think the bag looks almost as big as the popsugar bag – if so I’m a gonna be happy!

    1. Haha, the fish bag is definitely an interesting item. XD I think the bag might be smaller, but I don’t know – hopefully it’s closer to the size of the Popsugar clutch. 🙂

  2. This was my first Nina Garcia box and I’m really disappointed. I don’t wear baseball hats, I don’t need anymore makeup bags, the plastic shoe is weird, and my phone is an HTC One…so the Otterbox giftcard is useless. Plus, I feel like lipstick and nailpolish should be left to my Glossybox and Ipsy bag. I’m really trying to find the good points in this box and be positive, but I feel let down since I spent $100 and all the big items are not my thing. Maybe the expensive boxes are not for me, because I got the Popsugar Luxary Resort Box and felt the same way. =(

    1. Aw, I’m sorry to hear that you were disappointed. 😦 This box is definitely going to get a lot of mixed reviews, but if you don’t like the majority of the items, you should totally try to eBay the whole thing and try to recoup the cost of your box! I’m sure there are people who missed signing up for this box that would love to have a second chance to buy it. 🙂

      Personally I think the Popsugar Luxury Resort box wasn’t all that great, even though I did end up trading for a few of the items. :p The best $100 box I’ve seen was the Popsugar Holiday Limited Edition box in 2013.

  3. I was mixed about this box as well…feels like the taste level is declining since Nina’s first box last winter, which had fewer items but everything was tasteful and exclusive. This felt like more of a hodgepodge of stuff. I’ll stick it out until the September box and then decide whether to continue my subscription.

    1. Her first box was definitely high-end luxury as you would expect from someone as amazing as Nina! Her second box was fantastic for the sheer volume of items that had fantastic value. This third box really does pale in comparison to her first two, but I do believe it is better than other $100 boxes out there. XD

      I’m definitely going to stay subscribed for another box and see what kind of hints she’ll give us. Hopefully it’ll be great and not worse than this one. XD

  4. If anyone has a friend who missed out on either #NGQO2 or the most recent #NGQO3, I’ve just listed an assortment of items from those boxes on eBay. Good stuff, just won’t get used, so hopefully someone else can enjoy!

  5. Thanks for your post! This is my first box from Nina Garcia and I definitely have mixed feelings about it. I got the same white shoe thingie that you did. Mine was bent in funny way so it doesn’t even stand up on its own. I’d rather it had not been added at all because it isn’t like anyone would really miss it, but having it in somehow cheapens the box. (KWIM?) I didn’t love the hat because it isn’t something that I’d feel comfortable walking around wearing- would have preferred a shirt. The clutch with the shark on it just made me feel like I am clearly not that fashionable because I can’t think of a reason I’d ever use it. And why the second clutch??Im still trying to figure that out. (I have so many summer clutches from Popsugar, etc. that I don’t know what to do with them all!) The hair products look nice and I’m excited to try them or share with my family. The sunblock wasn’t very exciting but it will definitely get used and always good to have on hand. I was upset that the lipstick I received was a bright red color. I am not a lipstick person (glosses only) and I’m never ever going to use such a bright color. The polish looks like it would be good for a pedicure. I am most excited about the earbuds as I’ve heard good things about them. Plus I like that I can use them in the car since they have the microphone feature. The candle is lovely smelling- can’t wait to use it! Overall I can’t say I’m upset because there were some nice items, and the things I liked definitely were more than the $100 I paid. But the box just didn’t wow me. I had heard so much hype about the NG boxes but this didn’t seem to live up to that at all. I’ll continue to subscribe through the Fall box though and hopefully the next one will really stand out as something special.

    1. Thank you for dropping by! 🙂

      Aw, it sucks that this was your first Nina Garcia box. I hope that the next one in fall definitely makes it up to you since I feel like her third box was the weakest of the three so far.

      I’m kind of on a clutch/makeup bag overload too thanks to trades, FFF, and now NGQ03. But it’s okay, hopefully this means that all the subscriptions will stop sending them!

      And LOL yes, I totally understand what you mean about not including the plastic shoe. It’s like the sponsored items in the FFF box. They just kind of cheapen the whole experience even though they were added in “for free” since they paid FFF to be in the box.

      1. I did forget to mention that I went on to Otterbox right away and ordered my phone case. I don’t have a 5s (4s here) but I’ll either keep it until I upgrade or give it to my daughter, who has a 5s and has been asking for an Otterbox. I thought that was a nice addition to the box, assuming you had an iPhone or a Galaxy. 🙂

      2. Yay, I’m glad that one was a hit! 😀 I think your daughter is going to love it because it’s a really fun pattern and super colorful.

        I was super excited about the Otterbox code because I’ve never had one and so I definitely had to go order one right away. Actually just received a shipping notification from them!

  6. Oh dear! Going by Nina’s first two fabulous boxes I ordered my first box, the most I’ve ever spent on a box, thinking that ngqo3 would be equally brilliant. I’m so disappointed by the plastic shoe, drugstore sunscreen and code for an Otterbox that won’t fit my new iPhone 5C. I really can’t decide whether it’s worth risking another month. : (

    1. Aw, I’m sorry this was your first experience with Nina Garcia’s Quarterly box. 😦

      This third box (though still pretty awesome) was nowhere near the level of the first two (unfortunately), and I think most people would agree based on what I’ve seen thus far.

      You should totally see if you can trade away the otterbox code! A couple of people have expressed interest in it because it’s a limited edition design. 🙂

  7. Glad to know that Otterbox ships quickly! My daughter is away at camp returning this Friday. It would be terrific if it arrived by then. 🙂

    1. It ships via Fedex Smartpost so it might take awhile. (at least it usually takes a long time for me) XD The information hasn’t updated on my tracking so I have no idea when it’ll arrive exactly/how far away the starting city is from me.

  8. So interesting to see the mixed feedback on the latest box and I agree 100%. Somehow, it doesn’t feel as thoughtfully curated as the first two boxes, especially the first box which was extraordinary in its quality. Personally, I’d rather have fewer, higher quality items from boutique brands that are a new discovery for me, than drugstore sun screen, Calvin Klein lipstick, etc.

    1. I think everyone can agree that the value was there for this box, but not necessarily the quality due to the inclusion of a few items. :p But hopefully people will be happy (for the most part) since $100 is quite a bit to shell out, even if it’s only every three months.

  9. Totally agree that the value was there. 🙂 I also agree that the overall “feel” of the box is what seems to be lacking. It’s like that special something (namely Nina’s style) that would set this box apart from all the others just isn’t there. I think that is what is disappointing.

    1. Hmmm… yes I definitely agree. Some of the items didn’t seem up to her (usual) standards and I was really, really hoping that there would be something amazing related to the World Cup because she is passionate about football. Sadly, it turned out to be just a baseball cap. 😦

  10. This is the first box Ive gotten from Nina Garcia. While there are some things Im not sure Ill use (like the hat or shoe) most of it I will so Im happy with what was sent. Living in the south like I do you can always use the sunscreen. The earbuds are pretty, the candle smells amazing, and the otter box was great because its something I can really use. I have a friend who’s favorite thing about summer is shark week on tv so the clutch will probably be going to her and Ill keep the other one. I think this box was more impressive than others I had seen for the same price. Ill keep this sub for the fall too. Id rather pay $100 for a box full of different goodies than $50 for fabfitfun or social bliss and get half the items and a lot less bang for my buck. Nina is my splurge box 😉

    1. Yay! I’m glad that you liked the majority of the box. 🙂 I think it’s hard to be happy with every single item in a box like this (or really, any box). But it’s awesome when you can say that most of the items!

      SHARK WEEK. Haha, what an awesome idea for people who receive the shark clutch! 😀

      LOL yes, I would always choose this box over FFF or Social Bliss. The value for those boxes aren’t there if you compare it to Nina’s! It’s definitely the best splurge box out there right now.

      1. Hello, I know this is a old post but can I please ask a question? In this Box did everyone recieve the white & gold earbuds or did they come in different Colors? Thanks so much in Advance.

  11. Yikes, I’m relieved that I cancelled this subscription. I can’t believe there is no jewelry and 2 clutches. I have the POPSugar clutch so wouldn’t need another. I have freakishly small ears so the earbuds would have been not so useful for me LOL! I hope you do enjoy your items but I see a lot of people cancelling their subscription to this one after this box. It’s too bad because I think Nina is amazing – maybe sub boxes are just not her thing 😦

    1. Yay for saving $100! It’s always nice to see your decision to cancel justified after the spoilers are released. 🙂 But haha yeah I was definitely thinking of the people who ordered the Popsugar Limited Edition Resort AND Summer boxes, then this box and FabFitFun because they would be overloaded with clutches!

      I am definitely enjoying this box! I think I like the items more each day – I just used the Joico last night and my hair is amazing today. 😀 Hopefully Nina can revamp her box for fall so that it’ll be better received by everyone, but I’m happy with this box despite my initial reservations.

      1. Haha, omg that’s awesome! XD I’ve always wanted to try a Popsugar LE box, but they always come out around the same time as Nina’s and… well, Nina’s box always wins out for me.

  12. Dear @boxesfordays i am really disappointed that you didnt like our clutch. Just for your reference this clutch does not retail and if we would retail the price would not be 100 dollars. It has nothing to do with the clutch you saw on our site.Different construction, different materials, no lining.
    It was made specifically for a subscription box and not to retail on our eshop. Best regards Ilena Koku

    1. Ahh, thank you for the clarification on the price as well as the construction of the pouch itself! Maybe I’ll fall in love with one of your other products later down the road. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s