Birchbox January 2015

by - Monday, January 12, 2015

Gosh, I still can't believe it's 2015! 

The year for me started with the best of company around, wine and a lovely orange and walnut cake. Unfortunately that wasn't the only sweet thing I had during the holidays though. With three biscuit tins, a Celebration box and all sorts of other sweets in the house, I couldn't resist myself from snacking. Luckily I only put on a kilo compared to other people who put on way more, but that didn't stop me from wanting to kickstart my body this year and get a bit healthier and slimmer. New Year's Resolution? Maybe. One thing is for sure, January's Birchbox is here to the rescue, as this month it has collaborated with Women's Health magazine.

First thing I noticed when I opened the box was a small booklet with the title "Hit Refresh", 12 bite-sized challenges. There are some great ideas in it, like keeping a diary log, take a cold shower here and there, spend at least 10 mins outdoors every day and eat more veggies for breakfast (spinach, courgettes and asparagus omelette anyone?), which had me browsing fitness equipment I can use at home, but we'll come back to that later. There is also an offer for 10 issues of Women's Health magazine.

The box contains five beauty items, only one of which is a make up one, and two lifestyle. I guess the motto behind it is "Mens sana in corpore sano", which roughly translates to "A healthy mind in a healthy body".

  • Philip Kingsley Body Building Conditioner: Taking it from the top, after a good fitness set and lots of sweat shedding, your body needs a shower to rejuvenate and re-hydrate. Not only your body, but also your scalp, unless you come from a planet where the physical response to activity of this level is shown through excessive batting of the eyelashes. I know my scalp does sweat. I also know my hair gets drier during the winter months, so there is no chance I won't be using a conditioner. This one has wheat proteins in it and such a relaxing, enjoyable smell. I seriously caught myself smelling my hair when I got into bed prior to sleep. My sample is 20ml, which was enough for a couple of uses. Full size is 250ml and retails for £19.

  • REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask: Finished with your shower but have some extra minutes to spare? Best be using a face mask then and take care of your skin. This one is fast working and exfoliates softly without irritating your face. I usually have problems with masks as the area around my nose and cheeks feels like burning, but I had no problem with this one. Quite a generous amount for a sample as well (10ml) since the full size is 50ml. It retails for £30.

  • HealGel Intensive: Of course now that you're finished with the mask you need to moisturize and if your skin is anything like mine, then you need something cooling, fast absorbing and lightweight. Look no further I tell you. Used either as a rescue gel or a primer, HealGel will do the trick. I believe the secondary aspect I love the most is the ever so light scent it has. I would have liked a slightly bigger sample though, as the one sent to me was only 5ml but I understand, as the full size product is 30ml. Its retail cost is £37.50.

  • Activbod Cooling Finish Lotion: What is it we've left that we haven't covered so far? Our body of course, therefore a good lotion can fill that gap. This one has cooling menthol and vitamin E that promises to refresh and moisturize as well as offer some comfort to burning muscles. Hopefully I will be putting it to the test soon, because I bet a trillion I will be hurting the first week I start exercising, no matter how much stretching I do before and after! 20ml of a sample is quite the satisfactory amount, full size is 100ml and costs £12.

  • Stila Lip Glaze: I don't know about you, but I can't imagine putting any make-up on after an exercise regime and a relaxing shower. My cheeks would still be rosy, my face nice and glowy, my body refreshed (if not sore). There is only one thing I could see me use and that is some subtle colour to my lips to match the blushed cheekbones. I would preferably go for a tinted balm but Birchbox is introducing us to Stila's lip glaze, a sheer, long lasting gloss. I personally don't like glosses, I think I've mentioned that before, so I can't really appreciate this product as much as I do its brand (Stila has been a teenage love of mine). With 2,4ml being the full size, I'm happily surprised of the 1,5ml I received as a sample. Retails for £15.

As you must have already noticed from the photos, the two lifestyle items is a sachet of green tea and a pilates band. 

  • Embrace Matcha Green Tea: I get it, green tea is a great antioxidant and helps detox the body, but I'm a sucker for a hot cup of coffee. This one in particular is considered a superfood because it has 10 times the antioxidants of regular tea, but still it doesn't sound particularly tantalising, at least to me. Still, I will give it a go, but I can tell you already that I won't be purchasing, as I find it ridiculous to pay £24.99 for 30 sachets of tea.

  • Birchbox Pilates Band: I can't think of a most appropriate lifestyle item to fit the whole theme than this. OK, maybe a skipping rope would be fine as well, but it'd be too bulky to fit in the box. The band helps improve muscle endurance even when you're sitting in front of a computer (like myself now), by putting it around your ankles and stretch. As simple as that! Of course there are other exercises you can do too and it's so easy to store practically anywhere, even take with you to the office! Of course it's a Birchbox exclusive that you buy from the site for £7.99.

I will try to keep true to my New Year's resolution and have a healthier lifestyle this year starting today, by having a workout calendar on my wall and drinking more glasses of water. I will have to set my mind on it, but if you people have been through this before and you have any tricks up your sleeve, please do let me know! It will do me the world of good, especially if my breathing improves. 

Until next time, 


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