Monday, February 2, 2015

January 2015 Birchbox

Holy snow, Batman! Here in the Northeast we just can't seem to catch a break with the weather. Since I'm home from work a little early and stuck inside for the rest of the night I figured it was a perfect time to catch up on blogging. I was all about playing catch up last month after having taken a break for some me-time back in December, and I'm still a little behind on my subscription box reviews. I will say, though, that the delay in writing is in no way a sign that I was disappointed with what I've gotten. My January Birchbox was a pretty solid one, and I can't wait to show you what's inside!

The theme for January was "Let's Do This!", encouraging subscribers to get motivated, get active, and to hit the ground running in 2015. Our boxes were also extra cheery and dressed for the occasion with a bright pink lid and confetti patterned base. The products I received were all sort of your basic staples that would be perfect post gym. Here's a quick breakdown of what I got:

Sweetly spicy scent with Indonesian clove bud, Indian tuberose, and Japanese orange flower.

Full Size: 50 ml ($55)
Sample Size: 1.5 ml ($1.65)

There's no doubt that this is a pretty high quality fragrance with plenty of lasting power. That being said, I just wish the scent itself was something I enjoyed smelling a bit more considering how prominent it was. Sincerely is a spicy, sultry fragrance that makes me feel like I'm being transported to Morocco or India or another far-off exotic locale. I can appreciate that it's a pretty scent that some people may totally love, but it's just a bit too heavy for my personal taste.

Earth-friendly, botanical-rich spray that gives you flexible hold and nourishes strands.

Full Size: 200 ml ($30)
Sample Size: 30 ml ($4.50)

The only other non-aerosol hairspray I've ever tried is Bumble and Bumble's Thickening Hairspray, which I actually use to add volume to my hair prior to blow drying. I haven't had a chance to experiment with this much yet, and I'm wondering if it could be used to a similar effect. I'm afraid that this might be a little too wet to use on my dry hair, which is only usually acquainted with a little finishing spray to tame flyaways. Any suggestions for how to best use this hairspray would be appreciated!

Mineral-based tinted moisturizer that softens, evens skin tone, and has a matte finish.

Full Size: 1.7 oz ($36)
Sample Size: 0.17 oz ($3.60)

This is actually the second time I've received this product in a Birchbox (and I was even credited with 100 points as an apology before I even got the box!), and I suppose if I was going to accidentally receive a repeat, this is one I don't mind having a second tube of. This mineral sunscreen is somewhere between a BB Cream and a primer. The coverage is really light, and yet the texture is so smooth and mousse like that it does an amazing job of blurring imperfections in the skin. I also love that it's all natural and has SPF 30. At this time of year I think I'd be more likely to use this as a base under my foundation, but in the summer I'm happy to wear it all by itself!

Lightweight hydrator that heals dry skin and energizes with invigorating rosemary and mint.

Full Size: 8.0 oz ($19)
Sample Size: 1.5 oz ($3.56)

You can never have too much body lotion in the winter. This formula is hydrating while also being light. The fragrance is very woodsy and herbaceous, which may not appeal to most. I don't hate it, and I'll certainly make use of this sample, but I don't love the scent enough to purchase the full size.

All-in-one primer, stain, and gloss that's loaded with vitamins and berry extracts.

Full Size: 0.12 oz ($24)
Sample Size: 0.01 oz ($2.00)

While this sample may be itty bitty, it certainly is cute (just look at the little gemstone detail on the cap!). The formula of this gloss was really interesting. It feels like an ultra lightweight mousse and is not at all all that a traditional gloopy, shiny, sticky kind of gloss. All of You is a soft pinky nude shade, and as the pigment fades it leaves behind a really pretty pink stain on the lips. My only gripe is that it stays wet feeling on the lips and therefore transfers to EVERYTHING. As a morning coffee drinker I've either got to wait to apply this until after I've finished my cup of Joe or accept that most of it will be sitting on the rim of my cup instead of on my lips.

While this certainly wasn't my most valuable box (with a total value of $15.31) it was by no means disappointing. I was surprisingly pleased with the Manna Kadar lip gloss, and I will totally use up another tube of Coola Sunscreen any day. The fragrances of the lotion and perfume weren't exactly my jam, but I can appreciate that the quality of the products themselves is still quite good. The only thing I've yet to utilize is the hairspray, mostly because I'm not sure how to incorporate it into my normal hairstyling routine.

Thinking about becoming a Birchbox subscriber? Use my referral link to let them know I sent you their way! You can also check out reviews of all my previous Birchboxes here.