A New Day

Taking a look at all of the things I've been missing

March Birchbox Review

on April 6, 2014

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oh dear… I’m so far behind! The March Birchbox was packed with so many products that I’m still working to sample everything. I guess I’ve had bigger problems, right?

The March theme was Spring Forward and looking how to get the most out of your products. Listen, I don’t have as much spare time these days, so I’m all over this.

Here we go:

 – Coola Tinted Matte SPF 30 for Face – “Slathering on sunscreen can seem more like a chore than a proper primping ritual, but COOLA’s standout facial tint has us (gasp) actually looking forward to applying SPF. The silky, mousse-like consistency is a far cry from the greasy lotions we’re used to, and it gives us lasting sun protection without an overpowering scent. Made with 70 percent organic ingredients—including plenty of antioxidants—the eco-friendly formula dries down to a matte finish. The subtle beige tint evens out skin tone and masks flaws. It works best for light to medium complexions.

How it Works

This is no ordinary SPF. COOLA suspended two skin-safe mineral sunblocks—titanium and zinc dioxide—in a moisturizing base to ensure a smooth, even application. Shea butter naturally softens skin. Age-reversing antioxidants like evening primrose extract and borage seed oil deflect free radicals, while naturally water-resistant plankton makes the formula extra-durable.”

Feedback: well, we haven’t had much sun… I’m going to hold off on this for a while. I will say, however, that while this sample looks quite generous, it isn’t. The plastic packaging is really thick so I busted out my handy high powered flashlight to check it out. I had heard on some of the Makeup Talk boards that the Coola samples were very short on, you know, the sample. There is probably enough for one use.

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 – DDF Ultra-Lite Oil-Free Moisturizing Dew – “In an effort to battle an abundance of unwanted shine, we sometimes err on the side of going too matte, caking on unflattering layers that make skin appear dull and dry. This lightweight oil-free moisturizer works on all skin types—yes, even acne-prone—to replenish moisture without clogging pores. A mix of aloe vera, vitamins A, C, and E, and grapeseed extract hydrate, leaving skin soft and dewy (not overly shiny and certainly not lackluster).

How it Works

A mix of aloe vera, vitamins A, C, and E, and grapeseed extract hydrate for supple, glowing skin. The fragrance-free formula absorbs quickly, so there’s no need to press pause on your a.m. routine as you wait for it to soak in.”

Feedback: since I have been testing out the Benefit products for the last couple weeks, this has been on the back burner. I have never used DDF, so I’m excited to give this a go. As I mentioned before, I try not to get too crazy with switching up my skincare routine too often, so I may give this a shot on my next trip – its very compact.

 – English Laundry No. 7 for Her – “Long known for his line of men’s scents, Christopher Wicks of English Laundry tweaked his No. 7 blend just for the ladies. Bright and fruity, the result is both flirty and fun, grounded with alluring hints of masculine musk .

How it Works

This fruity cocktail combines hints of pear, jasmine, melon, and apricot to create a fragrance fit for the warmer months (or when you’re longingly thinking about said months). Base notes of sandalwood, vanilla, and musk add warmth.”

Feedback: this scent is lovely. I get light sandalwood and vanilla, but really just a very clean, light scent. It sort of reminds me of the smell of a spring rain. I would buy this for sure.

Gilchrist and Soames London Collection Body Lotion – “Eco-friendly” and “spa-grade” don’t typically go hand-in-hand, but this luxe body lotion from Gilchrist & Soames manages to be both. A longtime supplier of some of the world’s most exclusive hotels, resorts, and spas, the London-born brand is dedicated to creating high-quality products while minimizing its environmental footprint. Infused with natural emollients like glycerin and honey, this fast-absorbing formula instantly hydrates parched skin anywhere on the body. What’s more, it’s free of potentially irritating ingredients and leaves behind a light, crisp scent.

How it Works

This natural hydrator is loaded with antioxidant-rich botanicals like red tea, soy, ginkgo biloba, grape seed, and milk thistle. Naturally derived glycerin and honey provide instant moisture, with a hydrating boost from brassica plant extract. Always cruelty-free, this formula comes to you free of parabens, phthalates, petrol-derived ingredients, mineral oil, urea, DEA, TEA, and propylene glycol.”

Feedback: I loved this scent – so clean and soft. Unfortunately it just wasn’t moisturizing enough for me. It was absorbed quickly but did not provide long lasting moisture. This was a bit of a disappointment.

Ojon – damage reverse Restorative Hair Treatment + Restorative Hair Treatment Plus – “Let’s start with a disclaimer: most hair treatments are more or less conditioners masquerading under fancy names. Not so with Ojon’s creamy balm, which goes beyond moisturizing to actually repair many types of hair damage—from split ends to uncontrollable frizz. A unique pre-shampoo treatment, it transforms into a rich oil upon contact with the heat of your palms, and it’s designed to be applied directly to dry hair. After just one use, your hair will be stronger, shinier, and softer.

How it Works

This luscious balm is overflowing with ojon oil from Central American rain forests. Rich in essential antioxidants and lipids, ojon oil (together with an infusion of Rouge Oleifera) restores the integrity of each hair shaft while sealing in shine. Over time, your hair will be less prone to breakage and heat damage. You’ll be glad to know that the filler-free formula doesn’t contain a single drop of water, and it’s also free of artificial preservatives, dyes, and heavy silicones. Plus, the invigorating scent is sure to win you over.

Feedback: As with many Ojon products, this stuff STINKS. You know what they say though about the benefit outweighing the side effects? Completely true in this case. So far I have used the Restorative Hair Treatment. Each foil packet provides 2-3 uses for long hair. It comes out of the packet thick and pasty. The idea is to warm it in your hands and then work into hair. It was hard to get past the smell and texture… once it melted down, I coated the lower 2/3 of my hair and let it sit for 20 min. I was afraid this would leave my hair heavy and greasy, but it was just the opposite. I shampooed and conditioned as normal, used a straightening balm and dried it straight. My hair was super shiny, soft and the color was much more vibrant. Even after the next wash a few days later, my hair was still very shiny and soft. This product is fantastic.

Ghirardelli Intense Dark Cherry Tango – “If milk chocolate is the confectionery equivalent of the waltz, then intense dark chocolate is most certainly the tango. Throw in some tart cherry pieces and crunchy roasted almonds, and we’re ready to put on our dancing shoes. These melt-in-your-mouth treats from Ghirardelli’s Intense Dark collection make for a deeply satisfying, yet unexpected tasting experience. We love the contrast between the velvety dark chocolate and the crunchy-tart filling. Bonus: the individually wrapped squares come in at only 50 calories apiece.”

Feedback: I don’t like dark chocolate and like it even less with cherry. Thank you for the thought, Birchbox.

Whew. I appreciate the jam packed box this month, but it was hard to keep up. This was soooo much better than February though – thank goodness!

What did you get in your Birchbox?

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