Unboxing April 2015 BirchBox

After last month’s horrible Birchbox, I decided to get the curated box for April.  I just didn’t want to be disappointed with BB two months in a row, and besides ~ the curated box was a Mad Men inspired box, partnered with AMC, and you could pick New York or Los Angeles!  As much as I love the City of Angels, I went with the City that Never Sleeps, because I liked the items better in that box.   I also did the special Birchbox Plus this month, as I knew I was missing out on the pretty Rifle Paper non-curated box, and I love Rifle Paper’s designs.

My Box Revealed!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel,  Beauty Protector Protect & Oil, Cargo Blush in Los Cabos, Liz Earle Eyebright, Whish Shave Cream in Blueberry

Isn’t that box so pretty?  I love the abstract flowers ~ very 1960’s!

Informational Card


Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel  A few years ago, I received this in another subscription and I gave it away ~ stupid me!  I have, over the last few years, tried a lot of brow products, from pencils to elaborate systems that use powder and wax.   And you know what I discovered? I am already blessed with dark, shapely eyebrows.   Sure, there might be times where I might want to “fill” in my brows but that isn’t an everyday occurrence, or even a quarterly occurrence, if I am being honest here.  I don’t like the really heavy dramatic and drawn-in brow look ~ and knowing me, I would probably rub my eyes and forehead and then there would be this dark streak of eyebrow color across my face!  haha.   What I DO need is a clear gel.  Years ago, before there was such a thing on the market, I used an eyebrow brush and some hairspray ~ I would spritz the hairspray on the brush and then quickly brush my brows in place ~ hey, it worked!   Then, when companies came out with clear mascara, I used that.   It is time that I use a product specifically meant to keep my stray eyebrow hair in place while conditioning with natural botanicals.  I am pretty happy with the sample size too!   This can be used by itself or if I have used a brow pencil, use it over that.  Deluxe Size 2.5 mL Value $6.68

Description: Thanks to Anastasia’s brilliant brow gel, our mission to achieve Brooke Shields-worthy eyebrows isn’t as impossible as we thought. This miracle-in-a-tube is fortified with botanical conditioners and oils to keep brows looking polished without any flaky, sticky stuff. Use it over an eyebrow pencil for a touch of drama or solo for a more natural look. The formula is free of harsh chemicals and contains plant-based ingredients like chamomile extract to soothe skin. Essential oils prevent brows from flaking and a film-forming polymer helps keep them in place without looking stiff

How To Use: After shampooing, coat strands starting a few inches away from roots all the way to ends. Leave on for 7 minutes or so, then rinse with cool water and style as usual. Use weekly for best results.



Beauty Protector Protect & Oil  I knew I was getting this oil in my box, so while I will not use it ~ I love Ojon’s Rare Blend Oil Rejuvenating Therapy, as it is for fine, limp and oily hair like mine ~ it is okay, as it was not a surprise.  I do not like Beauty Protector products as I feel that they are totally inappropriate for my hair type, but if you have dry, damaged, coarse or curly hair, this might be for you!  Deluxe Size ?? 5 mL ??  Value $1.10

Description:  Suitable for all hair types, this uniquely lightweight hair oil protects against UV rays and heat damage like no other elixir we’ve tried. Furthermore, our hair never feels heavy or stiff after using it. This nourishing formula uses star ingredient argan oil to protect, strengthen, and add a pretty gloss to strands—all without heaviness. Armed with UV and heat protection, it stands up to two of our favorite past times: heat styling and spending hours in the sun. The paraben-free formula is also cruelty-free

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethiconol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Argania Spinosa Kernal Oil, Fragrance/Perfume, Red 17/C1 26100, Yellow 11/C1 47000, Limonene, Linalool,
Eugenol, Geraniol, Amyl Cinnamal, Hexyl Cinnamal, Citral cosDNA.com analysis

Cargo Swimmable Water Resistant Blush in Los Cabos   This was another reason why I wanted this box.  I didn’t get the Cargo blush in March and I wanted to try this color ~ The name alone makes me smile (I love vacation getaways!)  This is a very pigmented matte tangerine shade and it is so pretty for spring/summer!   It blends out naturally, so don’t worry that you think you are going around with streaks of orange on your cheeks!   I know ~ orange, right?  I only dislike bright or pale orange lipcolors ~ I am actually fine with coral and peach blushes and I do love a peach-brown lipcolor.   In fact, I have the perfect lip color to go with this blush ~  Nars Matte Lip Pencil in  Walkyrie ~ which is a warm coral/pink/brown shade (I am posting a swatch of that color as well)   This blush is in a very cute tin that makes it easy to toss into a small purse or pouch!  Deluxe Sample .11 oz  Value $7.73

1. Los Cabos – Sheered Out 2.  Los Cabos – heavily swatched

1. Nars Matte Lip Pencil in Walkyrie

Description: his long-lasting formula is sweat-, heat-, and tear-proof. Plus, it’s packed with subtle light-diffusing minerals that give skin an effortless glow. L-lysine, an amino acid naturally found in your skin, ups the blush’s staying power. Three shades—Ibiza, a shimmery bubblegum pink that goes on surprisingly sheer, Bali, a medium rose, and Los Cabos, a soft tangerine—flatter a range of skin tones.

Ingredients: Talc, Octyldodecyl Stearate, Lauroyl Lysine, Dimethicone, Zinc Stearate, Methicone, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Benzethonium Chloride, Tocopheryl Acetate. May Contain: (+/-): Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163), Ultramarines (CI 77007), Manganese Violet (CI 77742), Red 7 Lake (CI 15850:1), Red 30 Lake (CI 73360), Red 27 Lake (CI 45410), Yellow 5 Lake (CI 19140)  cosDNA.com analysis


Liz Earle Eyebright Soothing Eye Lotion  Another item that I was really interested in.  I had no idea what this was but it is a cooling lotion for your eyes!  You put some of this watery lotion on a cotton pad and sweep it over your (closed) eyes and it will soothe, refresh and depuff tired eyes.  I can tell you, as someone who stares at a computer screen all day long ~ I am a computer programmer in RL (haha) ~ at the end of the day, my eyes are tired, itchy, scratchy.  I can’t wait to try this out ~ I wasn’t a fan of Liz Earle’s skin cleanser, but if this works, she might have a new fan!   I found out that you can also soak a couple of cotton pads and then apply to your eyes for 10 minutes, as a mini-spa.  Deluxe  Size 50mL Value $8.33

Description: Waking up is hard to do—especially when streaky leftover mascara and puffy eyes are involved. This cooling lotion is here to change all that, with a blend of ultracalming and depuffing ingredients (think: witch hazel, cornflower, and aloe vera) that instantly refresh tired eyes while sweeping away any makeup residue. The nongreasy formula is perfect for irritated eyes and contact lens wearers alike.

Ingredients: Aqua (water), Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel) water, PEG-60 almond glycerides, Glycerin, Decyl glucoside, Aloe barbadensis (aloe vera) leaf juice, Euphrasia officinalis (eyebright) extract, Centaurea cyanus (cornflower) flower extract, Panthenol, Phenoxyethanol, Benzoic acid, Dehydroacetic acid, Potassium sorbate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium methylparaben, Polyaminopropyl biguanide, Sodium propylparaben, Citric acid.  cosDNA.com analysis



Whish Crave Shaving Cream in Blueberry I’ve had grapefruit, pomegrante and lavender before, and now I have blueberry.  This is an okay product.  It does clog the shit out of my razor ~ so I do have to rinse it very well, but it does work, smells nice ~ like blueberry pop-tarts ~ and it will last for one use on my legs. This is not a product I would purchase and I prefer shaving foam, which is why I use a cheapo-Number-1-selling men’s shaving cream (Barbasol) as women’s shaving creams are hard to find and uber expensive.  I just don’t like gels or creams as I find they clog my razor up too much.    The formula moisturizes, due to the squalane (omaga-3) and organic shea butter; soothes with green tea and coconut oil and nourishes your skin with jojoba oil.   Whish is paraben free, sulfate free, DEA and TEA free and petrochemical free and they use naturally sourced and organic ingredients.   That all said, I find that their logo is very retro ~ it does remind me of designs from the 1960’s with that tall, narrow cursive lettering   Sample Size 22mL Value $2.93

Description: This decadent shave cream from Whish one-ups its competitors. Made in the U.S. with eco-friendly ingredients, the non-drying formula gives you a mighty close shave without leaving legs devoid of moisture. And, unlike its distant peers, it’s designed not to foam up: instead, the rich lotion is chock full of organic and natural botanicals that soften skin over time—and even help prevent ingrown hairs and razor bumps.  Apply a thin layer to your legs, armpits, or bikini line before you shave. This rich formula doesn’t foam up: It smooths on like a lotion instead. After shaving, rinse away with warm water.

Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Stearic Acid, Myristic Acid, Squalane, Glycerin, Potassium Hydroxide, Glycol Distearate, Cocos Nucifera (Organic Coconut) Oil,  Vaccinium Angustifolium (blueberry) Fruit Extract, Simmondsia Chinensis (Organic Jojoba) Seed Oil,  Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Oil, Camellia Sinensis (Organic Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Butyrospermum Parkii (Organic Shea Butter), Tocopherol (Antioxidant), Tetrahydroxypropyl Ethylenediamine, Ethylhexyl (Octyl) Palmitate, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin,Hexyl Cinnamyl, fragrance, Linalool  cosDNA.com analysis


My April Birchbox Plus


I picked the Rifle Cold Drink Tumbler in and the gold foil notepads for $20.00.  The notepads can be purchased separately for $10.00 and they are really nice ~ one in cream and the other in black, with gold foiled botanical prints.  The black notepad is more ornate with its designs, with flowers, leaves, buds and berries, whereas the cream one reminds me of a pussywillows.  These are the perfect size to carry on you ~ 4.25 in. x 5.5 in ~ to quickly jot down notes, thoughts, shopping lists, whatever!   The cold drink tumbler is in a pretty pink floral and it is a tall plastic tumbler, with a lid and a plastic straw.   They do not sell this set anymore nor the tumbler by itself, but based on the current prices for BB’s tumblers, this was valued at $15.00.  Birchbox also had a Rifle Tote bag that is in the same pattern as the tumbler but I felt that was too much flowers for me!

I really liked this month’s box, even with the hair oil product that I won’t use.  The highlight is the blush, which is such a cheerful coral and perfect for spring/summer and the Liz Earle Eyebright really intrigues me!  I hope it works the way they describe it ~ as I really could use something like this for my tired eyes.   I couldn’t be more pleased with my add-on this month as well ~ the tumbler is so pretty and the notepads are really a surprise hit!   Just beautiful in their design and I am going to have to check out the other notepad designs, because I have found my new addiction.   I paid $10.00 for my box and received a value of $26.77.  I also paid an extra $20.00 for my BB Plus and that was worth $25.00

Do you subscribe to Birchbox?  What did you get this month and what was your favorite item?

If you want to subscribe to Birchbox, I would love it if you used my referral link   https://www.birchbox.com/invite/biancardi

[ descriptions in italics from birchbox.com and product websites ]

[ this blog post contains referral and affiliate links ]

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