Tuesday, April 24, 2012
It's Birchbox time again! This month the theme is "Natural Wonders", is stocked with products inspired by nature. So there are skincare goodies made with natural ingredients, nail polish that uses healthier alternatives, and perfume with natural and earthly notes. Perfect timing for spring, when everyone gets the urge to clean up, throw out yuckiness and charge into the season renewed and refreshed.
Let's take a peek inside...
Erno Laszlo Active pHelityl Soap - 6oz bar, $40
Don't even start, I know what you're thinking. $40 for a bar of soap, have we all gone cuckoo?! No, we have not! First off, this isn't a regular old bar of soap. This is a cleansing bar that's meant for you face, it works to balance out the pH levels of your skin. I'm not a fan of bar soap, but like I said, this isn't like a bar of soap you'd find at the drugstore. It's not going to leave your skin dry or tight, and that's thanks to the glycerin and safflower oil it contains. According to the company, it will purify your skin and stimulate cell growth - those are good things.
I tried it and found it left my skin feeling very soft, plus I loved the smell! No fussy perfumes, it just smelled like soapy and clean. There is a specific cleaning ritual the company suggests following to get the maximum benefits, don't worry, it's simple. Fill the sink basin about halfway with warm water, dunk the bar into the water and rub it all over your face, lather up and massage your face and neck, then use the Laszlo Splashing Technique to rinse. Splashing technique is as follows: splash your face 20 times with the water from the basin, then 10 times with flowing water from the tap. This is supposed to help clear out your skin and flush away dead skin cells.
Skeptical if all this effort is worth the fuss, guess who Laszlo counts among its fans? Audrey Hepburn and Madonna.
Harvey Prince Yogini - 50ml, $55 or 8.8ml, $26
The description calls this perfume, "the fragrance equivalent of a yoga class." I should tell you that yoga and I aren't currently speaking, but despite that, I found myself liking the scent. It's slightly musky, without being overwhelming and very warm - there are notes of sandlewood, Egyptian myrrh and grapefruit. I don't know if I necessarily felt calm afterwards, but I did enjoy the way I smelled! There are two sizes available, the full 50ml and the smaller 8.8ml which will easily fit into your purse in case you need a quick relaxation fragrance session.
Juice Beauty Oil Free Moisturizer - 2 fl oz, $28
My love for Juice Beauty is no secret, nor will it come as a surprise to anyone who's read any of these Birchbox reviews. The oil free moisturizer is another one of my favorites. Instead of water, there is a blend of fruit juices and botanicals to balance out and moisturize your skin without leaving it feeling greasy. It's also got aloe leaf juice and cucumber extract to fight off redness and irritation. I've already added it to my arsenal of moisturizers, and it's found a permanent home in my medicine cabinet. I've got mostly oily skin, with a few annoying patches of dryness. Juice Beauty's moisturizer works with my confused skin and keeps it balanced, not too oily and not too dry.
Zoya True Spring Collection Nail Polish - .5 fl oz, $8
I recently read an article about a study in California nail salons that found high levels of toxic substances in polishes that claimed to be "toxin free", click here to read it. The article also lists the brands of harmful products that were found in salons, so you can keep an eye out for them next time you go to get your nails done. More reasons to love Zoya, which actually is toxin free. Aside from that, it's so opaque you can get away with one coat if you're in a hurry.
They claim that it lasts 50% longer than traditional polishes, so I decided to conduct my own unscientific test. I am a nightmare on polish, I will chip it within a day - either wresting with my dog or clacking away on a keyboard all day at work. Three days in, and the only wear I can see is on my index fingers, the rest of the nails are still in perfect condition. The only time nail polish survives 3 days on my fingernails is if I've gone in for a professional manicure. Case closed in my book! Zoya wins.
Yes To Blueberries Brightening Facial Towelettes - 30 pack, $7.99
These handy little wipes will remove your make up, clean your face and moisturize your skin all at the same time! They're also oil free and hypoallergenic, and won't clog your pores. I popped my sample pack of 10 in my purse and used them to freshen up after working out. Much better than using a baby wipe, since these are specifically made for your face and baby wipes are made for wiping butts.
These wipes are available at drugstores for the same price, so you can try them without paying for shipping from Birchbox. But, if they were in your April box, you can get free shipping with the purchase of one or more additional items.
Here we are, at the end of another month of Birchbox goodness. I can't even tell you how excited I am about next month's Gossip Girl themed box! I love themes, don't you? For anyone unfamiliar with Birchbox, it's a monthly subscription for personalized beauty samples and is $10 per month. Each box is shipped free, and will come with an assortment of goodies that's determined by your answers to their beauty survey (it helps them decide which products you're most likely to be interested in and enjoy) sign up by clicking here. See you next time!