While I do not live a vegan lifestyle, I do try to make a conscious effort to pick beauty products that are cruelty-free and made from vegan ingredients. I’ve tried Birchbox in the past, and while I’m not entirely sold on their subscription boxes yet, their limited edition collections can sometimes be great deals. Their latest edit, The Natural Edit, is definitely an incredible deal.
While none of the products are ones that I would normally choose to use, I decided to give the collection a go as it seemed such a bargain. The collection cost £32 and included £163 worth of products – individually some products cost more than the collection itself! Plus, as all of the products in this edition are full-sized versions, it is definitely worth it. Because of this, I decided to give it a go, as ordinarily I wouldn’t be able to buy all of these products individually and I wanted to give new things a try!
SKINIRVANA Pure Bliss Delicate Beauty Oil
A luxurious moisturising oil, containing all natural ingredients with vitamin E and notes of lavender and geranium. Ordinarily costing £45, I’ve never tried anything like this product before because I can’t currently afford to spend that much on one product (and probably never will!) Having tried this beauty oil; however, I might have to go over my finances again because I feel like I can’t live without it.
Initially, I was apprehensive as I have relatively oily skin to start with, and the thought of directly applying oils to my skin sounded like a terrible idea. But the oil smoothes into the skin so easily, leaving my face incredibly soft. It is also the longest lasting moisturiser I have ever used, as my skin was still moisturised in the morning after my evening application. Would I buy it again: if I had the money, then absolutely!
Aveda Thickening Tonic
A natural tonic for the hair, this botanical-based spray is said to thicken the hair without leaving a residue. The tonic definitely gave my hair a bit of a boost, and I think it also smoothed my hair a little at the ends. It also didn’t leave a sticky residue or any crispy bits of hair like many other spray products for hair. However, I do not usually like the smell of products from Aveda, and this one is no different. Being made of natural ingredients doesn’t mean that something needs to smell bad without the need of added scents, yet, to me, there’s something a little unpleasant about the smell of this tonic. At full price, this tonic would be £9 for a 30ml bottle, which is alright for many quality hair care products, but a little steep for me.
Soaper Duper Fruity Green Tuberose Body Lotion
An everyday moisturising lotion, the main plus of this product for me is the pineapple scents, which may be a little overwhelming for some, but I quite liked. I also really liked the packaging of this one, as it seemed quite exciting and fun – plus, it’s made from recycled plastics! It’s pretty light as a moisturiser, but I guess that is fairly standard for a lotion. For me, it isn’t quite heavy duty enough for making my skin feel less dry, and it is also a little too sticky as it dries, although I will use it as a general post-shower moisturiser for my body until it runs out!
Malavara Ultra Luxuriant Hair Elixir
A pre-shampoo oil treatment for the roots and scalp, I was again sceptical about adding extra oil to my hair as it is naturally already quite greasy. Instead, my hair seemed pretty soft after I washed out the oil, and it appeared less frizzy, even after it was blow dried. The oil is meant to be left on your hair for at least 20 minutes and can stay on overnight, which is what I did the first time I used it.
As I’ve never used anything like this product before it would have been good if there were more instructions, as I found it a little difficult to drop the oil directly onto my hair and ended up just applying it with my hands instead. I was also unaware of how much I should be using, so who knows if I used too much or too little! This product was a new thing for me, but at £29 full price, it is unlikely I would ordinarily buy it.
Inika Organic Long Lash Vegan Mascara
If you’re looking for an all natural, plant-based mascara, then the Inika Organic is pretty good for a conditioning and lengthening mascara. My favourite thing about this mascara is that it feels light and less clumpy than many mascaras, making it a great day-to-day ‘natural’ look option. However, because of this, the mascara probably isn’t something I’d use on a night out or to an event, as I’d want something a little more intense.
It is quite a nourishing mascara though, with vitamin E, which is certainly good for improving the health of my eyelashes after I have used a stronger mascara. While it is great though, it is £23, and they recommend getting a new one every three months or so as it is all natural ingredients. So, if you’re just interested in a vegan or cruelty-free brand, then I think there are definitely some better options out there in the mascara world (like my ultimate fave Thick and Fast HD Mascara by Soap & Glory), as the brush is definitely better and it is more than half the price.
Beauty Papier Daisy Toner
This product is quite possibly the coolest beauty product I’ve ever seen. The thick toner is packed full of real chrysanthemum flowers that float around in the bottle and have infused it with an incredible scent! It’s the sort of thing that you don’t want to use because you want it to look cool like that forever. I wish there were more instructions for using it though, as using a cotton pad like with other toners just simply doesn’t feel fancy enough for the daisy toner.
My favourite thing about this toner though is that my skin feels normal after using it and it dries pretty fast. My day-to-day toner before I got this one included tea tree oil and charcoal, so it dried my skin out pretty fast, but that doesn’t seem to be a problem with this one. It leaves my skin feeling refreshed, smooth and with a healthy glow.
Yes To Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal 2-in-1 Scrub and Cleanser Stick
I am obsessed! This is without a doubt my favourite product in the set and the one that I will definitely be buying again. This was a little surprising to be honest, as I’ve always thought of the Yes To range as being one of the cheaper skincare brands, so to have this as the standout product for me in a box full of luxury skincare goodies made me see the brand in a whole new light.
After the first use of this, there was a massive difference in how my face felt and looked, as my skin was so completely smooth and blemish free; which is a pretty difficult task considering how I almost constantly have terrible milia. I was convinced I was going to give myself spots from using it as I kept on touching my face to feel how ridiculously soft and smooth it felt! This is one of the few cleansing scrubs I have used that really does the job without leaving you feeling like you’ve been rubbing your face on sandpaper. I am impressed!
Human + Kind Shower Mousse Coconut Dream
A creamy coconut-scented shower mousse that whips up into a pretty thick foam. As well as using ethically-sourced, vegan ingredients, the dream mousse is lightweight, and a little can go a long way. The foaminess of this product is really nice and moisturises the skin a lot more than a standard shower gel. My only qualm with this mousse though is that I’m not a massive fan of coconut smell in general, although this one certainly isn’t unpleasant. I have had a look into the brand, and they do sell the shower mousse in other scents, so I may well be giving some a go once I’ve finished with this one!
Natura Turmeric Sheet Mask
I genuinely cannot say what face masks actually do for my skin, but I will continue to use them in the name of self-care regardless. This mask was fairly standard as a sheet mask and was well moisturised. From the packaging, I was actually expecting a red or orange mask, but it was just plain white, and I’m not entirely sure where the turmeric came into play with this.
A downside for this mask was that it was quite difficult to open up and get on. A lot of sheet masks I’ve used in the past will place the mask onto a foil sheet or similar so that the mask can be easily unfolded and put on the right way round. For this one, the mask was just folded on itself, so opening it up was a bit difficult, especially considering how moist it was! I can’t say it really did all that much for my skin, but I’m a sucker for these things so it’s more than likely I’d use another one someday!
A little detail that I loved about the edit was the accompanying note. With each Birchbox order, you will typically receive a leaflet with details of each of the products and how they are used. With the Natural Edit, the note is made of recycled paper and contains flower seeds, so that if the paper is planted and watered flowers will grow from it, which I thought was a really cute idea!
Are you thinking of getting this collection or do you already own any of these products? Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below or getting in touch via Twitter!
Image Credit: birchboxuk