Birchbox x Boden Review | April 2017

Friday 21 April 2017

After a run of really good boxes over the past few months, I had high hopes for the April Birchbox.

These boxes always seem to go in cycles in terms of how good the contents are, and it has usually happened that there will be a couple that I don’t like, then I’ll decide to cancel my subscription, only to see something unmissable that lures me back in.

So I go back and forth with what I subscribe to. But would the April offering from Birchbox have me celebrating or hating? Take a peek…

The April Birchbox is a collaboration with yummy mummy brand Boden. Now, I don’t know what the average profile of a Birchbox subscriber is, but I found this collab a little surprising.

After all, I’m 31 and a mum and even I consider Boden a little bit mumsy for me – if very tasteful with it. But just lately I have actually seen some really nice Boden shoes, so either I’m getting older or they’re getting trendier – possibly both?

The box arrived in a floral riot of colour, immediately putting a smile on my face.There’s a loose them at play of being ‘bold and beautiful’ which I quite liked. I could definitely stand to be a little bolder in my choices sometimes, as I’m one of those people who really only wears monochrome!

There is also a £10 off voucher to try Boden out so perhaps I might be tempted!

First up inside the box was the Manna Kadar Cosmetics Radiance Split Pan Bronzer and Highlighter Duo.

Its been a while since I’ve received anything like this or even tried anything new when it comes to bronzer, so this caught my fancy straight away. The main thing I liked was the fact the whole thing is so compact, which makes it ultra-portable.

On the downside, it has quite hard to get your average bronzer brush into the pan of colour as its so small. These powders are versatile enough to make up for that though.

Initially, I thought I might dislike the bronzer, as it was shimmery and quite copper in tone, whereas I’m more of a matte taupe girl when it comes to products like that.

However, once on the skin, I was pleasantly surprised that if you use a light hand, the overall effect is subtle and flattering – not too sparkly! If you add more layers though, you get a pretty bronze that works well as an eye colour.

The highlighter is a pretty peachy-gold that I liked straight off the bat. It works equally well catching the light on the tops of cheekbones or as a soft wash of colour over the lid. Manna Kadar is not a brand I’ve ever heard of, but the powders are velvety soft and easy to blend.

In all, this is the ideal compact, all in one product to travel with or pop into the tiniest clutch for an evening out. I always have love for products that are multi-tasking, so this is a winner for me.

Second out of the box, it’s the Nip + Fab Colour Correcting Concealer, one of the brand’s first forays from skincare into cosmetics.

I have long been a fan of their lotions and potions – especially the Glycolic Fix pads, which are an essential for me – so I was quite excited to see these.

If you’ve missed them popping up everywhere lately, colour correctors are designed to sit under your foundation and use opposite colours to correct skin problems. So, green neutralises redness, yellow adds radiance, lilac cancels down dull and sallow tones, and orange gets rid of dark shadows. I use an orange colour corrector myself every day to try and hide my purple under-eyes.

I’d be interested in trying their orange offering, although I received the yellow one in the box, but that’s also useful. I wouldn’t have much use for the green one as I don’t have any redness. I think this might be a nice way of adding some subtle contouring and illumination to skin.

The correctors come in a slim squeeze tube with a built in applicator brush, which makes them super easy to use.  I’m really looking forward to trying this out and have high hopes for it.

Next, I pulled out the Polaar Ice Pure Gentle scrub with Arctic Cotton. A few boxes ago, I received a hand cream from the same brand that I really liked, so I’m hoping this will be of a similar quality.

I’m a big believer in regular, gentle facial exfoliation to banish dullness and clogged pores, strip away pollution and dirt, increase cell turnover and help creams absorb better.

Arctic cotton is apparently a super-moisturising ingredient that smooths and replenishes the skin,  working in tandem with the exfoliating properties to leave you silky soft. This is the ideal thing for taking away with you, and a lovely little treat for the skin.

I was so happy when I saw a little can of Oribe Dry Texturising Spray peeking out at me, I may have done a little dance. I’ve wanted to try this product for ages now – ever since that not-quite-wavy, tousled, s-bend hair began taking over Instagram.

I must have watched countless tutorials on how to get this look and a lot of them pointed to this particular product as being a key ingredient. But at £22 a pop for the full-sizevcan, I wanted to know if it was really worth it before buying.

A few boxes ago, a lot of other people seemed to receive this, and I was quite disappointed that I didn’t. So now I’ve finally got my hands on it. This is supposed to be like the love child of a hairspray and a dry shampoo, and I’m hoping it will give my lob the cool-girl factor. Can’t wait to test it out.

Last but not least Baija Paris Crème Moana in Fleur de Tiare. The beautiful floral packaging on this cream really drew me in. I’m getting serious holiday vibes just from looking at it, and the scent is gorgeous.

With a blend of shea and cupuacu butters (try saying that when you’re three pina coladas down!), as well as coconut oils, and jojoba wax, this will tackle even the driest of skin and leave it baby soft. Aloha!

So there you have it -  a beautiful, bold box full of holiday essentials. Well done Birchbox for this month – summer essentials and some exciting new brands. Long may it continue. 


  1. I've always been hesitant to try a skincare or beauty box because I'm not particularly adventurous in either category. I've heard a lot about Birchbox, and it looks quite nice, though I'm still not sure if I would ever get one! A stationery box, however, is right up my street, and I've gotten a few of those before!!


  2. Wow, Birchbox really give a great selection of products! I'd be willing to give them a try but they don't commit to all cruelty free products do they?

    Rebecca, xo