Birchbox Man Unboxing: Optimized

Last month’s Birchbox Man was focused primarily on getting the year started off on the right foot. Happy and healthy is (most) everyone’s goal and this was a nice accompaniment for attaining it. On a personal level I’ve been keeping at it; running three days a week, boxing three days a week, and cooking now 6-7 nights per week usually healthy fare, often paleo-inspired. I’ve lost almost 8 pounds and I’ve dropped another belt notch (that’s a total of three since last year’s “reboot”!).

Despite it being a successful year so far and being mostly satisfied with last month’s Birchbox, it pains me to say nothing from last month’s box was impressive enough for me to consider either of them a “favorite”. I’m always excited about a good face scrub but the scrub provided by Do The Right Thing was nostalgic in a bad way by having a scent that reminded me of the cheap hairspray that formed a cloud in the beauty shop my grandmother visited every Friday morning. And despite being so excited about the headphones from Icon Q I was disappointed with them this morning after they fell out of my ears just as often, if not more frequently, than standard Apple earbuds while running – and they’re even designed to stay in there!

C’est la vie, I suppose. On to this month’s goodies!

February is a short month, here and gone before you know it. As people leading busy lives in an even busier world it’s important to stay on your feet, keep up to speed and remain ahead of the game all the while looking amazing while doing it. Birchbox Man has provided a nice little kit to help us get there in style with this month’s box, Optimized

From left to right:

Resurrecting Rinse and Resurrecting Wash by Dear Clark

1989 by Histoires de Parfums

Contort by Quirky

Plug Power by Quirky

Yes, February may be short, but that’s no reason to be a slouch. Most people’s New Year’s resolutions have likely already fallen through but if you decided to take better care of yourself this year, Birchbox Man pretty much gives you no choice. May your February be as optimized as mine will be.

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Birchbox Man Favorites + Let’s Do This Thing Unboxing

When I ran the New Year’s Day 5k I was sort-of ridiculed about how matchy I was. Gray shoes with highlighter yellow laces and highlights, black tights and shorts, black tee with highlighter yellow design and a highlighter yellow long-sleeved technical shirt under it. My sunglasses were black with yellow/green sides and I even had clips on my earbuds that converted them to over-the-ear fit that were also that awful yellow color. When asked why I didn’t have a toboggan on my response was my running toboggan didn’t match so I didn’t wear it. The rule is, always has been and always will be: Looking good is more important than feeling good.

Now I’ve got the clothes under control and Birchbox Man is there to take care of my face, skin and hair. Thank GOD. Last month’s Birchbox Man was a pretty good one, though inferior to the month before. Either way, my favorite items from last month were:

  • Fantastic Face Wash by Ursa Major.

    I’ve fallen in love with Ursa Major. When I got the face balm in my first box I could tell they were all about quality and last month’s face wash met that standard, too. I depend on a good face wash throughout the week to keep me scrubbed up but not dry afterward and this face wash by Ursa Major did just that and smelled lovely, too.

    Buy It Here

  • 3oz Flask by Izola

    I’m not going to say that this flask was a life saver or anything but it came in handy while visiting family over the Christmas break. I’ve never owned a flask before so this was sort-of exciting from the get-go. I topped it off with some Jim Beam and found that it fit perfectly in the skinny pocket of my camera bag. It also helped keep me in a good mood despite the typical stresses the holidays bring. Maybe that was the JB but we’re just going to say it was the flask so thanks Birchbox Man and thanks Izola!

    Buy It Here


Unfortunately these Birchbox Man boxes can’t last forever but thankfully they send me one every month :-)

This month’s theme is Let’s Do This Thing and is looking to assist us in making our new year happier and healthier. And here’s how they intend to do it:

From left to right

Fuzzy Logic Hair Strengthening Shampoo by Billy Jealousy

Classic Eau de Toilette for Men by CLEAN

First Thing First Scrub by Do The Right Thing (DTRT)

Charcoal Bar Soap by Mt. Sapola

Altos Headphones with Mic by Icon Q

Another favorite from a couple of months ago was the beard wash provided by Billy Jealousy so I’m anxious to try this shampoo by them. I’m also interested to see what these headphones are all about since I’ve been wanting to try some new ones and these were offered as a special addition to my box that I gladly accepted. I’m not familiar with the brand but I’m hoping it’s only because they’re just getting started or something. More to come on that (I hope) as I learn.

Stay clean and remember: looking good is more important than feeling good :-)

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Birchbox Man Favorites + The Stuff Of Legends Unboxing

A while back I unboxed my very first Birchbox Man box, The League that came with some moisturizer, cologne, exfoliate, face balm, shot glasses, mason stones, shampoo and conditioner. I said I was going to review those items. I never did.

Last month I received my second Birchbox Man box, The Right Scruff, that included beard wash, beard oil, solid cologne, facial hair scissors and a beard brush. I didn’t even bother posting the unboxing of it.

So to meet in the middle, and before posting the unboxing of this month’s box, I just want to cover some of my favorite items from these previous boxes.

  • Rescue Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser by Suki Skincare.
    October box, The League
    This was an awesome scrub. The sample was enough to last about a week of daily usage so mine lasted just less than two weeks. The scrub felt great on all portions of my face from forehead to my chin under my beard, scrubbing off dead skin and other nastiness, leaving my skin feeling smooth and smelling like lovely (but manly, obviously) citrus.
    Buy it Here
  • Facelifting Face Balm by Ursa Major.
    October box, The League
    This was probably my favorite product in the October box. While it seemed a little “greasy” at first, this face balm was just perfect for my sometimes-dry, sometimes-oily skin, leaving my face feeling fresh and properly moisturized. Also, just like the scrub, the aroma from this item was a 10 out of 10, though I cannot accurately describe it.
    Buy it Here
  • Beard Wash by Billy Jealousy.
    November box, The Right Scruff
    Something I’ve learned since growing a beard is that merely shampooing with the same “stuff” you shampoo your head with doesn’t always work out great. Your beard can often easily dry out and you’ll smell that shampoo under your nose all day. The formula created by Billy Jealousy is perfect for keeping your beard hydrated, smooth and smelling fantastic.
    Buy it Here
  • Beard Oil by Blackbird.
    November box, The Right Scruff
    I’ve been wanting to experiment with beard oil for some time now and just didn’t know where to start. What Blackbird has done here scares me into thinking that I’ve started out with the best, though. This oil smells great and with just a few droplets into the palm, my beard stays smelling great, looks healthy and stays hydrated all day.
    Buy it Here

And now on to more current things!

This month’s Birchbox Man’s theme is The Stuff of Legends and is meant to make you reminisce on holidays past, the traditions you enjoyed then and the traditions you’ll be beginning anew. A favorite old tradition of mine is the simple Christmas dinner we share with my folks. A favorite newer tradition is our family “ussie” we’ve had for the last decade or so. And my favorite brand new tradition is the annual Christmas party we have with our friends that includes fellowship, food and a silent auction that benefits a local charity. Will this box play a role in any of this year’s traditions?

From left to right:

Beard Oil by Beard Buddy
Awake & Exfoliate Body Bar by Ernest Supplies
Modify Pomade by Hanz de Fuko
Fantastic Face Wash by Ursa Major
3oz Flask by Izola

Right away I’m very excited about the Fantastic Face Wash by Ursa Major since I was such a big fan of their product in the October box. I’m also excited that I received the Hair of the Dog Flask by Izola because I sat around and didn’t respond to the survey on which box “extra” I wanted and all choices were taken up by the time I got around to it – this was the one I wanted anyway!

So, here’s to another month of grooming, holidays, friends, family, food, Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, parties and, of course, the Family Force 5 Christmas album and all-around manliness.