Birchbox - January 2013

I’ve been tempted by beauty boxes for ages but have always talked myself out of it, reasoning that £10 a month could be spent on a nice nail varnish or two, rather than taking a risk on samples. However, I’ve been feeling in a bit of a beauty rut lately, so am keen to find new products without having to splash out on full-size versions which may not work for my skin - Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish, I’m looking at you. I thought the rebranding of JolieBox as Birchbox was the perfect time to subscribe to one of these beauty services and see if they live up to the hype, so here goes...


KMS California ADD VOLUME Volumizing Spray, 30ml. I was intrigued to try this as I have very fine hair which tends to look lifeless and boring unless I make an actual effort with it. This is applied to towel-dried hair before blow drying, with the heat working its magic to amp up volume. I think perhaps I was expecting a little too much from this product. I can't say I noticed any real extra volume after use, no more than blow drying normally gives anyway. The full size costs £14.85.

Fresh Sugar Rosé Lip Treatment, 2.2g. I’ve heard a lot of good things about Fresh so was excited to see this included. I really like the feel of this on the lips and it does a pretty decent job of hydrating them. The colour pay-off is minimal, but pretty nonetheless. I also really like the light citrus smell of it, and the fact that it contains SPF15. Bonus. A really nice product, but pretty pricey at around £15.

WEI White Lotus Moisture Rich Eye Blend, 2ml. WEI is a new brand to me and seems pretty exclusive, available only in Space NK and now on Birchbox. This eye cream is quite thick but blends easily into the skin, leaving a slight powdery feel. It's claimed to diminish the appearance of crow's feet, lines and wrinkles, so would suit more mature skin. Full size costs £60.

Taaj Crème Mains Délhicates Hand Cream, 30ml. Hand creams are something which normally never go unused with me. However, the smell of this means that I'll be shipping it off to my mum or sister. Why anyone would want cinnamon included in a hand cream is a mystery to me. The cream itself does an ok job of hydrating dry hands, but I have found equally good creams which are less offensive on the nose, and the purse. The full size costs £10.

Teapigs, super fruit. This is included as the 'lifestyle extra' in the box. Firstly, I love that these are called 'tea temples', it really adds a sense of divinity to tea drinking. I'm a huge tea fan, but just can't get into fruit varieties. Smells delicious though. A pack of 15 'tea temples' costs £3.99.

Overall, I'm not wowed by Birchbox's January offering. The Fresh lip treatment is the highlight, while the rest of the products are a little underwhelming. Fingers crossed the February box is more appealing.

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