Birchbox UK – April 2018

April is the first full month of spring and conjures up images of blooming flowers with clear blue skies. But at least we have a heat wave of sorts on the horizon (BBQ anyone?). Oh look, I’ve started a Birchbox post describing the weather again. (Sadly last month it was the beast from the east that introduced my post!)

My point is… Birchbox UK April 2018 have all the springtime feels wrapped up in its box this month. With a totally appropriate brand as the bow on top, too.

Unboxing: Birchbox UK April 2018

Officially, this month’s theme is ‘Brighten Up Your Day’. But the bigger deal is that Birchbox UK have collaborated with Cath Kidston to celebrate their 25th birthday! Spring time, flowers and blue skies? Cath Kidston’s prints are ALL about that. It’s no wonder the brand were born in this month.

Samples

In their promises to deliver ‘a little sunshine to your month’, Birchbox UK April 2018 have delivered us 5 unique beauty treats…

  • Cath Kidston Hand Cream
    Well I wasn’t expecting this! Although I’m fully aware of Cath Kidston, I’m not a regular customer to their brand (no diss, that’s just the way it is) so I had no idea they made hand cream! This smells lovely, with a fragrance of with jasmine and orange flower, which is a Birchbox exclusive too.
  • ModelCo Baked Highlighter
    Now this sample I was expecting, as Birchbox subscribers were given the choice of two colours before receiving the box. I went for Moonshine, which gives a subtle rose pink glow.
  • Lumene Overnight Bright Sleeping Cream
    Since receiving the Thermaliv Night Cream in January’s box, I’ve grown accustomed to night creams. This sounds just as dreamy too with Cloudberry seed extract, vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. (Hmm I feel sleepy all ready…)
  • Hask Coconut Oil Deep Conditioner
    Just what my hair needs right now; a ultra-restorative, revitalising, re-hydrating deep conditioner! (My weekend pamper session is sorted.)
  • Beautaniq Beauty Fill + Tame Brow Gel (FULL SIZE!)
    And to top it off… a full-size product worth £8.60, just short of the total price of my box. What’s great about these brow gels is that they keet your brows neat and tidy, whilst the colour adds structure to your face too.

Birchbox UK April 2018 samples

Added little extra: As is the usual protocol when Birchbox collaborate with brands, we’ve been treated to 15% discount at Cath Kidston! In-store and online, with plenty of time to peruse any treats. (until 31st May).

Box round up

Birchbox UK April 2018 has continued to add a little sunshine to our month… but I knew last month’s box was going to be hard to beat. (Still the best box this year so far, IMHO.) I think they’ve really delivered on the brand collaboration front though, and there’s the right balance between beauty, hair and skincare.

SPOILER FOR NEXT MONTH: Our May sneak peak printed on the back of the accompanying leaflet see’s the return of New York brand Doucce. We received their punk mascara (way back in May 2017), which delivered on lashes with VOLUME. This time we’ll be given a choice of two different coloured lip stains. Let’s hope they can deliver on lip colour too…

Not a subscriber? Get 50% off your first box here.

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I have not been paid by, sponsored by or asked by Birchbox to make this blog post or video in any way – I just do it for the love!

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New Purchases Show & Tell – March 2018

New Purchases Show & Tell March 2018 Emma Rose Daniels

March has been a whirlwind month, right?! The Beast from the East introduced the month and sadly the weather hasn’t warmed up since. I also had my car’s MOT (groan) and I’ve been working overtime (which meant scoffing my face with Easter chocolate had to be delayed). But, spending on a few little rewards makes these gripes of mine a little more bearable.

My New Purchases Show & Tell March 2018 is still a bit random, much like last month’s. Since I’ve been doing this series for over a year now too, I can’t help but reflect back on what I was buying this time a year ago. Remarkably, there’s one big similarity which I shall divulge in a moment…

New Purchases Show & Tell March 2018 video

No worries if you can’t watch my video right now, I also give a quick little paragraph on each of my New Purchases below:

Bioderma Hydrabio serum – 26 seconds in
Surprisingly, my go-to serum has never made it into my New Purchases Show & Tell list (neither has my moisturiser, but more on that in a moment). If you have dry and dehydrated skin, like me, I’d recommend giving this a go. It’s the best serum I’ve tried so far for my skin type, and I haven’t stopped repurchasing it since. (Throwback: I first gave this a go after receiving it in my Birchbox UK September 2016!)

Nuxe Crème Prodigieuse Enriche – 1:30 minutes in
There’s a few daily moisturisers I’ve had that have helped my dry skin (this sounds like a blog post I should write), but recently I’ve become attached to Nuxe’s Crème Prodigieuse Enriche. This was another discovery via Birchbox and has stayed with me ever since. (BOTH of these items layer well too.)

New Purchases Show & Tell March 2018 skincare

Acuvue 1-day Moist Contact Lenses – 2:30 minutes in
I’m still *sort of* new to contact lenses. Having tried them for the first time in the last few years and having only tried one brand/type of them, it was time for a check up. As expected, my prescription had changed slightly but when I mentioned that my eyes can get dry wearing the brand of contacts I had the optician suggested I’d try Acuvue’s 1 Day Moist lenses. So far, so good – and they also block UV!

Tickets to The Rolling Stones! – 3:57 minutes in
At this time last year, I’d bought tickets to see the Gorillaz at Dreamland Margate, which turned out to be one of my favourite gigs of the year! This year, I’ve bought tickets to see The Rolling Stones in Stratford and I can’t blooming wait. Yes I know they’re quite old now, but until I have a time machine to transport myself back to any of their concert in the 60s or 70s, I’m quite content seeing them as they are. Thank you.

Acuvue 1 day moist contact lens

Next month…

As I mentioned in the video, I’ve felt my last few New Purchases Show & Tell’s haven’t been as exciting and interesting as they used to be. I hope you’ve still enjoyed watching/reading them all the same, but next month will mark a return of varied purchases that are not boring I promise you! This is mostly because I have a BIG holiday in May that I’m preparing for – more details will come soon.

I do hope this series hasn’t gone sour or has bored you, though. I’m not a ‘monthly favourites’ type girl and enjoy the currentness (is that a word?) of my New Purchases Show & Tell series. So for now, I will soldier on and I can’t wait to show you the things I’ve already been buying in April!

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I have not been asked, sponsored or paid to review any of these products. I just like to shop!

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Taking to the skies with Polar Helicopters

Polar Helicopters Flying Lessons

With all this talk about turning 30, I’ve forgotten to mention and write about the big 30th birthday present I bought for David. For such a big milestone (although that makes it sound scary), I wanted to get a present that was a kind of a big deal.

When I had the eureka moment – a helicopter lesson! – the deal was pretty much sealed. I shopped around before settling on Polar Helicopters (who are also local to us!). So I thought I’d share with you our experience, as guys can be pretty tough to buy presents for, especially special, milestone, hey-you’re-30! type of presents. Here’s some pictures from the day, with a few good-to-knows before you or a loved one take to the skies too!

My first helicopter ride as a passenger
Preparing for take off

Before taking flight

I did a lot of sneaking around before David’s birthday (like compiling his life photos) and soon I discovered that I needed his exact height (easy enough) and weight (not so easy…) too. At 6ft 4, he can make a number of things look small – myself included! – and combined with his weight (which I can’t recall now) a 2 seated helicopter began to sound a rather tight fit.

Having a maximum height and weight for a helicopter scarily brings things into prospective doesn’t it? The only mode of air transport I’ve travelled with is of course a passenger airline carrier. I might fret about how much I can squash and squeeze into my hand luggage, but I’ve never stopped to think about why there is a weight limit.

A 4 person helicopter it had to be… but this also had its perks.

Polar helicopters flying lesson

Learning to Fly

A 20 minute flight lesson in a 4 seated helicopter (a Robinson R44) set me back £195 at the time. A bigger helicopter did mean a bigger price, but on the plus side I was allowed to jump in the passengers seat and go along for the ride too!

As this was David’s first ever helicopter lesson, the co-pilot performed take off and landing, but handed over the controls for basic manoeuvring. Despite helicopter controls being extremely sensitive, David seemed to pick these up quickly and soon even making some turns. (Imagine that, flying a helicopter for real! I don’t bat an eyelid when making a 3-point turn in my car…)

Helicopter passenger window view

Passing with flying colours

I didn’t realise this little gift voucher for a 20 minute flight would count towards the 45 hours of lessons you must take to become a pilot too. Polar Helicopters kindly provided a certificate and the time he spent flying in a logbook, if David should decided to continue lessons (for which we’d need to win the lottery first).

The experience was just as thrilling from the passenger’s seat too. I had a great flight with Polar Helicopters, the patchwork of the Kent countryside and coastline beneath me provided some stunning views, which I enjoyed all the more from not driving!

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This post is not sponsored in any way. I bought David a gift voucher from my own hard earned cash and just thought to share the experience…

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My (rather practical) 30 before 30 list

30 before 30 list ideas

Well well well… it’s a weird thing turning 30 isn’t it? Not that I’ve turned 30 yet. It’s weird because I’m often told how young I look, to then see shocked faces when I reveal my age. And if we’re talking about what age I feel? I still don’t feel a day over 22. (No, not like that Taylor Swift song…)

But regardless of feeling my age or not, I turned 29 in January and decided sometime before it to set out a 30 before 30 list. Yes, it might be late, but I’m glad I’ve left it until now. I’ve watched/read other 30 before 30 lists to get me inspired and I’ve realised if I wrote it any earlier then I might have put down some unachieveable goals.

I’m talking about goals like; getting married, being successful in my career and starting a family, which are all great goals, don’t get me wrong. But I’ve never wanted to put an age on those type of goals, and I’m glad I didn’t. (Although I did tick off traveling, which would have definitely been on there…)

So my list might be a little different from the typically aspirational list. Instead, my 30 before 30 is more like a 30 things to do before 30. It’s more focused on practical goals and things I can do (and afford), which is critical as I only have just under a year to complete it…

30 before 30 list UK

My 30 before 30 list

  1. Go to a new country.
  2. Run 10km in under 1 hour.
  3. Learn new recipes (try 1 new recipe a week).
  4. Go on a boat tour of Canterbury.
  5. Learn how to make sushi.
  6. Make a new friend.
  7. Get better at French (and look into getting a qualification?).
  8. Read 30 books.
  9. See a London Theatre show.
  10. Hike a local area.
  11. Drive abroad again, at least once.
  12. Cycle to Margate (& back).
  13. Visit and explore Ramsgate Tunnels.
  14. Visit the Shell Grotto in Margate too.
  15. Go on a spa day.
  16. Go glamping.
  17. Eat at a fancy restaurant I’ve never been to.
  18. Visit London Zoo.
  19. Get another tattoo?
  20. Attend a secret cinema event or movie drive-in.
  21. Go meat-free for a week.
  22. Spend a weekend in Brighton.
  23. Treat myself to 1 beauty product a month.
  24. Meet my uni friend’s daughter.
  25. Plan my own 30th birthday party.
  26. Write a reflective blog post on my 20’s.
  27. Host a BBQ/party at our house.
  28.  ? ? ?
  29.  ? ? ?
  30.  ? ? ?

30 before 30 uk

Finishing my list

Clearly I haven’t finished my list yet. (Maybe one of my 30 things to do before 30 should be to actually finish my 30 before 30 list!) The real reason I’ve left 3 spaces is because I couldn’t think of any more. Although, there’s another benefit too.

As I begin to tick off my 30 before 30 list I’m bound to think of other things I wish I’d added to the list. So these last three points are reserved for any last-minute bursts of inspiration. (But I’m open to any suggestions too.)

And so it’s starting to feel real now. Filming my video (where I’ve added more detail on why I’ve picked my choices) and publishing this post; now it’s the time that I need to make a start on ticking these goals off! Wish me luck, I will be reporting back (in the form of vlogs and blogs).

Don’t be a stranger; if you’ve written or completed a 30 before 30 list don’t leave before leaving some of your ideas, thoughts and advice below!

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Birchbox UK – March 2018

Birchbox UK March 2018 unboxing

I have no complaints with Birchbox UK March 2018 telling me to sit back and relax.  We started this month with SNOWMAGEDDON (or ‘the beast from the east’ vs storm Emma). If you, like me, were one of the unlucky souls who tried to drive in this insane weather, then you’ll know the beauty of just sitting back and relaxing at home.  (Thank god for working at home, hallelujah technology!)

Of course Birchbox have a slightly different slant which is behind this month’s theme.  Instead of looking back (like last month’s 70s, 80s, 90s theme), this month is all about looking within.  A bit hippie-ish yes, but this box seriously has you sorted for a proper pamper sesh.

Birchbox UK March 2018 unboxing

I’ve already spoken a bit about the theme behind Birchbox UK March 2018, but officially it’s named; Be Present, Not Perfect.  Basically this is telling us the importance of ‘me time’ and being more mindful.

I can’t find any important dates in the month of March that can explain Birchbox’s move on this.  (Maybe International Woman’s Day, at a push?)  But who cares, obviously caring and looking after yourself should be a priority all year round.

Birchbox UK March 2018 samples

Samples

So how does being more mindful relate to beauty products?  Birchbox lays down the first step which is to sit back and relax with the following five beauty treats:

    • Benefit BADgal BANG! Mascara
      Birchbox and Benefit have a good thing going on – meaning they basically treat Birchbox subscribers to a sample of their latest product!  Benefit mascaras are considered the best (they’re certainly a strong contender).  I liked this mascara, but I wouldn’t agree that it was volumising though.  Regardless, this still gives a big impact to lashes.
    • BLAQ Peel Off Mask
      We were given a choice this month between two Blaq products; a peel off mask or an eye mask.  The peel off mask was a winner for me because logically I’ll get more uses out of it (over the eye mask) and oh my god these charcoal masks look just so satisfying to peel off.
    • GLAMGLOW SUPERMUD Clearing Mask Treatment
      Another OH MY GOD moment.  I noticed Glamglow sliding into the Birchbox shop, but I didn’t expect to receive a sample in my box!  I am so stoked to receive this, honestly.  If you’ve not heard of Glamglow then you’ve missed out on one of the biggest cult beauty products in the last year.  I can’t wait to try this!  (This might even deserve its own separate review on here.)
    • Nuxe Reve de Miel Body Scrub
      Every Nuxe item I’ve received has been a banger.  Since receiving the Nuxe Crème Prodigieuse Enrichie (moisturiser) in my Birchbox in November 2016 (whoa, that was ages ago), it’s become one of my skincare staples.  So I have high hopes for this scrub!
    • Oribe Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray
      Did you see the result this left my hair in the video?  Need I say more…

I was also lucky to have received the Smith & Cult Lip Lacquer.  Although this wasn’t explained anywhere in the box, I think I’ve received this as an extra because someone couldn’t resist signing up to Birchbox through my referral link (which I will leave at the end of this post, if you’re interested).

Smith & Cult Lip Lacquer Hi-Speed Sonnet

Box round up

WELL, Birchbox UK March 2018 has been the BEST Birchbox of the year so far, imho.  No seriously, every product here has been so strong in terms of branding and type of product.  I’ve been so excited about receiving these products I’ve written this post without even trying some of them yet – just because I wanted to get this out to you asap!

SPOILER ALERT!  We’ve already received an April sneak peak at the back of our leaflet this month, which reveals the choice of a ModelCo Baked Highlighter.  Spring is definitely on its way in our April box judging by our two choices (between Frose or Moonshine).  Can it beat this month’s box, though?

Here’s my Birchbox referral link, where you can get 50% off your first box!

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I have not been paid by, sponsored by or asked by Birchbox to make this blog post or video in any way – I just do it for the love!

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