Before I dive into my review of January 2016's Birchbox, I have some sad news for the subscription beauty box's Canadian devotees. Birchbox has decided to put a hold on its Canadian operations due to the terrible exchange rate. Here's the official message.
We are so sad to let you know that we have made the difficult decision to put our Canada operations on hold. We love our Canadian customers, but with the current exchange rate and high shipping costs, we can't create the Birchbox experience at a price that is fair to you. We will do what we can to make that a possibility; until then, please know that we sincerely appreciate your support and enthusiasm for Birchbox, and we plan to take good care of our Canadian subscribers as we wind down in this market.
- For all Birchbox subscribers, March 2016 will be your last shipment.
- If you have a monthly subscription, you will no longer be billed after March. If you have an annual subscription, you will be credited the remaining value of your subscription in Birchbox Points.
- You have until April 30, 2016 to spend all your Birchbox Points (including your current points and those credited from your subscription).
All things considered then, my subsequent reviews are really for American readers. Canadian readers, we'll just have to wait for the day when the exchange rate favours cross-border shopping and Birchbox deliveries once again. Sigh.
One thing I've always loved about the Birchbox experience is that it's an experience right down to the box's design. January's Birchbox seems to be all about getting subscribers pumped for 2016. Use the sheet of inspirational word stickers to decorate the front and set your intentions for the year; you'll have to check my Instagram later today to see the word(s) I chose!
The product selection seems to be inspired by the new year too, from goodies that can be used post-workout to a hydrating sheet mask for winter-parched skin, and a bold red lip tint to channel your inner siren. Shall we take a closer look?
I raved about the Juara coconut-scented hand and nail balm in last month's Birchbox, so I was pleased to see a sample of Juara Candlenut Body Creme (full size $49) in this one. I like the non-greasy, quick-absorbing texture and the lingering tropical fruit-like scent (such a lovely reprieve from a grey winter!), and the trial size is small enough to fit in any gym tote for post-shower use.
As far as my winter-parched complexion is concerned, there's no such thing as too many hydrating sheet masks. I'm looking forward to trying out the BioRepublic Cucumber Breeze Soothing Fiber Mask (full size $21) tonight.
Meanwhile, dry and damaged locks will appreciate a few spritzes of Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect, a leave-in conditioner spray that's supposed to strengthen, repair, and detangle while providing UV protection for colour-treated hair.
Fave4 Texture Takeover Oomph Enhancing Hairspray (full size $20) reminds me of Oribe's Dry Texturizing Spray. It's somewhere between dry shampoo and a texturizing spray, and meant to add texture, revive limp locks, and accentuate beachy waves—all with a refreshing scent. For best results, pull sections of hair away from your head so the roots are lifted, spray 8"-10" away from your head, and tousle as you go. Very handy if you're getting ready to go out right after a sweat session at the gym.
K-beauty comes to Birchbox! TONYMOLY Delight Tony Tint (full size $6) is so lightweight it feels like water on the lips, but it dries into a red lip stain that literally doesn't budge all day. You'll definitely need the heavy-duty makeup remover for this one.