Monthly Archives: May 2013

BirchBox Man June 2013

BirchBox Man June 2013 Review

The Birchbox Man’s June 2013 theme is Off Duty with the flavor text of the provided cue card being:

Gentlemen,

     Harry Houdini, Steve McQueen, Andy Dufresne, Ferris Bueller. These legendary escape artists all knew how to make a quick, well-timed exit, and they always covered their tracks. Now it’s time for you to plan your own summer escape — whether that means a leisurely workday lunch or a full-fledged sabbatical. This box is filled with products to keep you looking and feeling great, even when you’re off duty, including some vacation-ready picks from our friends at DETAILS magazine.

Cheers,
Birchbox Man

To keep the process relatively simple, I’ll list the contents and then go over them in detail. So without further ado, my June 2013 BirchBox Man box contained the following:

  • 2 Pairs of Socks from Richer Poorer
  • A 0.35 Oz Sample of Proraso Shaving Cream
  • A 0.5 Oz Sample of Towel Dry All-in-One Thickening Shampoo
  • 2 Samples of Niche Male Deodorizing Wipes
  • 1 Old Spice Pure Sport Bar Soap

Birchbox Man Picks

Richer Poorer Socks

Richer Poorer Socks

My large items for the month of June were 2 pairs of executive style socks from Richer Poorer that retail for $12 each. I received a pair of Veteran – Green/Navy and a pair of Horn Blower – Blue. These particular socks are meant to be a bold fashion statement by pairing them with your cuffed up jeans or khakis. As far as my personal preference, I like the Veteran – Green/Navy, while the Horn Blower – Blue may be a little too expressive for me. The socks are made of 68% Combed Cotton, 16% Polyester, 13% Nylon, and 3% Spandex so they feel light and stretchy. I’ll definitely add this to my rotation of dress socks as they add a little spark to my work khakis.

Poraso Shaving Cream

Poraso Shaving Cream

The second notable item in my BirchBox Man was a sample of Proraso Shaving Cream – Refreshing and Toning Formula. This particular product is made in Italy and contains Eucalyptus Oil and Menthol to provide a nice refreshing fragrance and cooling sensation for your shave. This particular sample is 0.35 OZ compared to a full product which is 5.2 OZ and sells currently for $10 retail. I usually do not have to shave often since my typical shave routine only requires me to shave every 2-3 days, but I went ahead and let my facial hair grow out for 2 weeks to really put this product to the test. UPDATE: I went ahead and gave this product a test run. It worked really well and left my skin fairly soft. The menthol was slightly underwhelming for me in particular. The one thing I noticed was that after I shaved off my primary stubble, my skin felt really firm and tight.  When I was trying to touch up some of the smaller trouble areas around the corners of my mouth,  I noticed that the razor head started to stick to my face. Also after I finished rinsing and wiped my face clean I noticed that a very thin layer of my skin may have buffed off. To combat this, just rinse and make sure you pat your face dry.

Details Magazine Picks

In this particular month, Birchbox had some assistance from the people at Details Magazine to help them pick out some great items to put in the Birchbox Man Box. The following 2 items were their picks for my particular box.

TowelDry All-In-One Thickening Shampoo

TowelDry All-In-One Thickening Shampoo

The Towel Dry creates professional hair care products for men. This particular product is a All-In-One Thickening Shampoo for men with Fine or Thinning Hair. It contains pro-vitamin B5 to help add thickness, body and shine to your hair as well as natural amino acids, creatine and keratin to help strengthen and repair your hair. This sample came in a 0.5 FL OZ sample while a 12 OZ retail bottle will cost you $16 retail. I particularly do not need this product as my hair type is fairly thick and full, so I’ll probably pass this item on to someone who can fully review and appreciate this product. I’ll go ahead and contact support to ask them why they didn’t provide me with the Conditioning or Hydradting version, but it’s possible that Details Magazine only recommended the Thickening Shampoo version.

Niche For Men Male Deodorizing Wipes

Niche For Men Male Deodorizing Wipes

The final item from the BirchBox Man Guide was 2 samples of Niche For Men Male Deodorizing Wipes. I was actually looking forward to trying this product and came really close to purchasing it from the website before trying the trial. These Deodorizing Wipes are oversized wet naps for adult men and contain aloe and ginseng to purify and soothe skin on the go. They are meant to help you refresh your body when you don’t have time for a full shower but may need to freshen up post-work, gym, or maybe after being stuck in a hot subway car. I actually could have put this to use today as I was working on some dance choreography for a talent show at work, but I did not have time to squeeze in a shower. I received 2 samples while Five 2-packs will run you $15 retail.

Birchbox Man Score

Old Spice Pure Sport Soap Bar

Old Spice Pure Sport Soap Bar

Bonus Item Time. As a bonus, it looks like I was given a sample of the newly launched Old Spice Pure Sport Bar Soap. It has a pretty good fragrance and I currently use Old Spice as my body wash. My wife loves the fragrance. Personally, I don’t prefer Bar Soap because I find that stray shower water tends to make it stick or wash away. I’ll go ahead and give it a try though.

I hope you enjoyed this review of the contents of my June 2013 Birchbox Man box. If you are interested in subscribing, please use my subscription link, so that I get credit for helping launch another Birchbox Man. http://birch.ly/12Q6KQs

 

 

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Birchbox Man Review

Following the footsteps of the original Birchbox, Birchbox Man is a discovery commerce platform for men.  Subscribers of Birchbox Man are sent products once a month that contain samples of various different products. The main benefit to the consumer is that they will get to try new products that they may not normally purchase as well as receive products at a price much less than would be found at retail.  In particular, Birchbox Man allows one to fill out a profile which allows them to slightly tailor their boxes to the recipient on top of their traditional monthly theme.

Currently a subscription for Birchbox Man costs $20 a month compared to the women’s $10 a month but the difference is that it appears that the Birchbox Man contains lifestyle and fashion items. Past large items have included a large item such as Skull Candy headphones, Triple C greenBoom portable speakers, pairs of socks, sunglasses, and whiskey stones. At this time there is a 2 week wait-list to purchase the Birchbox Man subscription, but the time goes fast, and the Birchman Box ships on the 25th of the month, so the June 2013 Birchbox Man will ship on May 25th.

To learn more information or subscribe to Birchbox Man, you can subscribe at http://birch.ly/146xlbk

Barkbox

Barkbox May 2013 Review

I received my first Barkbox (Large) for the month of May 2013 and was fairly impressed. Shipping was fairly fast for me and the BarkBox’s are shipped out on every 15th of the month. Using their basic shipping method, it took roughly one week for my BarkBox to arrive. I purchased the 3-month subscription as a birthday present for my Golden Retriever/German Shepherd Mix, Troy (2 years old) and decided to go with a multi-month subscription to save $10 a month. In addition to Troy, we also have two other dogs, a thirteen year old mixed Terrier, Faith, and a 8 month Austrailian Shepherd/Cockerspaniel Mix, Barkley.

BarkBox May 2013 Large Box Contents

BarkBox May 2013 Large Box Contents

I know some people prefer to just learn the contents, so I’ll just list what I got below and then go into greater detail with each product in the BarkBox. I’ll list the full retail price, but you may be able to find the product cheaper on other websites or through Amazon.

  • 1 – Bionic Bone Large Chew Toy ($19.99 retail)
  • 1 – Barkworthies Smoked Pork Femur Bone ($4.20 retail)
  • 1 – Loving Pets Grill-icious All-natural Beef Treats – 4 Oz ($7.99 retail)
  • 1 – Bocce’s Bakery Green Juice Dog Biscuits – 4 Oz ($9.50 retail for 5 Oz)

Bionic Bone Large Chew Toy

Bionic Bone Large Chew Toy

Bionic Bone Large Chew Toy

The Bionic Bone Large Chew Toy was impressive. This particular toy is recommended for dogs between 30-60 lbs. which fit my 2 larger dogs perfectly. They really enjoy chewing on this bone and so far there hasn’t been any noticeable damage. Usually we give them Durachew toys which they can chew through pretty rapidly and the plus side to this particular chew toy is that I don’t have to worry about being scratched up by the little stray plastic edges from the Durachew toys. I would probably mostly compare these to the Kong toys as far as durability, except this specific toy can float compared to the floatable Kong toys that require a floater insert. I can happily toss this toy into the water and let my dog retrieve it.

The only slight downside is that I tried stuffing a few dog biscuits into it, but for the most part they popped out easily.  I don’t typically stuff my dog toys with treats as they are usually happy with just chewing them. At a later point, I’ll try putting in some peanut butter, but I’m afraid that they will probably go wild and fight over it. All in all, I really recommend this product and I wouldn’t hesitate in purchasing another product from Bionic Pet Toys. The official Bionic Pet Toy Website is bionicplay.com Some of the Bionic Toys can be found for up to 50% off on Amazon, which can be found    at the following link: Bionic Pet Toys

Barkworthies Smoked Pork Femur Bone

Barkworthies Smoked Pork Bone

Barkworthies Smoked Pork Bone

The dogs were really excited for this product to the point that I haven’t actually given it to them. I’m worried that they will fight over it and just the aroma of the bone has driven them a little wild. I just haven’t had time to separate my larger dog so that he can enjoy the bone by himself. I usually don’t give my dogs bones out of concern of bone shards, but I will make an exception and just make sure I monitor them when they enjoy this treat.

As far as a company goes, Barkworthies provides healthy 100% natural eco-friendly chews and treats. Most of their products are produced in the USA with the exception of their Cattle Chews which are sourced from Brazilian cattle. Like most other chew companies, they offer a variety of chews made from different animals, but they pride themselves on making sure that their products come from social and ecological aware sources, such as free-range, grass-fed cattle or naturally-shed elk antler chews from wild Rocky Mountain Elk. They offer bully sticks, elk antlers, pork chews, cattle chews, and various dog treats. You can purchase their products directly from their company website in bulk at barkworthies.com. Their current promotion is 10% off your order if you like their page on Facebook. Also you can find their products on Amazon with Free Shipping with Amazon Prime. You can try out their items by purchasing them individually as opposed to buying their items in bulk directly from their website. Barkworthies Individual Item Purchase Link

Loving Pets Grill-icious Beef Treats

Loving Pets Grill-icious Beef Treats

Loving Pets Grill-icious Beef Treats

If my BarkBox had an award that went to the item most likely for my dogs to swallow whole, this would be the item. The dogs loved these beef treats and could easily sniff them out if I hid them, and I think if I ever wanted their attention, I could just walk around the room with a bag of these. These fun dog treats are shaped like little round steaks with a slight grill pattern in some of them. These treats are 100% all-natural beef with sweet potato. With the issues lately with dog treats made from meat in other countries, you’ll be glad to know that these are made from 100% USA ingredients. They are also gluten free, no by-products, and no preservatives.

Loving Pets does not directly sell to consumers but you can find them at stores. Their company website can be found at lovingpetsproducts.com. If you do not want to purchase them in person, you can find them at “discount” on Amazon. As usual I have attached a link to where you can take a look at the products. They are currently on sale and are valid for free shipping with Amazon Prime. Loving Pets Grill-icious Amazon Link 

Bocce’s Bakery Green Juice

Bocce's Bakery Green Juice Biscuits

Bocce’s Bakery Green Juice Biscuits

I appreciate the fact that BarkBox included this product. It is probably an item I would never purchase on my own at my local pet store, but it gave me a chance to try the product. To be truthful, my larger dog, Troy, who is a very picky eater when it comes to treats decided that he did not like it and wasn’t ready to embrace the vegan lifestyle. To be fair, we bought him healthy rolled oat Milkbone dog treats and he basically told us that the other dogs can have them, but he’ll take the bacon flavored Milkbones. Also unlike your other typical dogs, he will actually sit and nibble on his treats and actually enjoy the flavor. The other dogs appeared to enjoy them, but they also eat their treats in one or two bites.

The Green Juice Dog Biscuits were made from organic oat flour, spinach, kale, apples, spirulina, flax seeds, and mint. Bocce’s bakery also offers a variety of other gourmet flavors, such as Beef Bourguignon, Truffle Mac & Cheese, Chicken Cordon Bleu, and PBNJ. A 5 Oz bag can be found on their website for $9.50. boccesbakery.com Currently I could not find this product at a discount on Amazon, but for your reference I included a link. Amazon Bocce’s Bakery Products.

Final Thoughts

I was actually very pleased with my BarkBox for May 2013. I actually feel bad that I only have a single BarkBox to spread between my 3 dogs, but it’ll just have to work out for now. For around $20/month, I was able to get $40 worth of products shipped to my home. If you find yourself spending $20/month or purchasing a toy for your dog and a couple bags of dog treats for your dogs, this may be a great alternative to get some dog products at a discount. Also it is great knowing that the majority of the products in their BarkBox are made in the USA and are all-natural. As an additional bonus, especially since we rescued 2 dogs, 10% of their proceeds will go to help support local dog shelters.

If you would like to try the BarkBox, you can use my referral link to get $5 off your first subscription. $5 Off Your First BarkBox Link

Barkbox

Barkbox Review

 

Barkbox

Barkbox

Barkbox is a monthly subscription gift service for dogs. Once a month, subscribers will receive a box tailored for their dog that will contain all-natural treats and other dog products that you may not find in a typical big-box pet store. Currently Barkbox offers subscription services for 3 different sizes of dogs: Small & Cute (0-20 lbs.), Just Right (20-50 lbs.), and Big & Bold (50+ lbs.). Plans start at $29/month + a $5/month shipping fee if done monthly. A discount is offered if you purchase months in bulk. A 3 month subscription will lower the monthly rate to $19/month with an additional $5/month shipping and if a 6 month plan is purchased they will waive the shipping making the final total $19/month.

From my experience, Barkbox is a good option if you already purchase a toy and several treats for your dog in a month. I have some voracious chewers and I easily spend $10-20 a month on chew toys alone, especially since larger breed chew toys can be as expensive as $30 each. After adding in additional dog treats, especially the healthier alternatives, it can add up to a significant sum.

If you are interested in trying out Barkbox or learning more, I have listed a link to get $5 off your first subscription. https://barkbox.com/r/I1Q2xPmAMS/