Best of Birchbox Man 2015 – Hair Care

This week is the final installment of the 2015 Best of Birchbox Man series, I’ve shared my favorites in Skincare, Cologne, Lifestyle Products and now finally I’ll be sharing my favorite category, haircare.  One of the things I like most about Birchbox is that I’ve gotten to not only try new brands – but also completely new types of products! 

If you recall, I said that I’ve only actually purchased two products after trying these samples, one was an aftershave & the other is one of the favorites from this post!  If you are someone who is trying to figure out ways to change up your haircare game, Birchbox is perfect for you!  I received a haircare product almost every month!

Best Haircare products from Birchbox Man 2015


Parlor by Jeff Chastain – Moisturizing Sea Salt Spray – This is one of the two products I’ve loved enough to purchase in full size from the Birchbox shop.  I love this product because it provides a light hold, I can use this in the morning & am happy with the hold throughout the day, but am not concerned about how it’s going to react to an evening workout.  If I use traditional gels or pomades those tend get messy when I’m sweating. PLUS the scent on this product is awesome! 

Baxter of California – Grooming Lotion – Another light hold (can you sense a theme?) but the difference for this one is the way that you apply – it makes for a much more directed style.  The hold is great & it’s Baxter of California, so you know the scent is good!

Malin & Goetz – Sage Styling Crème – This because a favorite of mine as soon as I opened by box!  The scent alone is great, but the ease of use & texture that it gave my hair made it a product that I reached for constantly.  I took this on a summer trip and didn’t need anything else – it’s a great all in one way to style your hair!

Parlor by Jeff Chastain Shampoo – Another winner from this brand!  I don’t often find myself reaching for the shampoo samples, they tend to be too specific in nature, i.e. texturizing, moisturizing, oily, etc  but this one is perfect (I think for everyone.. but at least for me).  The texture of your hair once you use this product will make you a fan, it doesn’t overly strip the hair BUT also doesn’t leave any build up.  

I hope you enjoyed this Best of Birchbox 2015 series, if you need to catch up (or just want to pick up some of my favorites) here are the rest of my favorites from 2015.



Best of Birchbox Man 2015 – Cologne

This week’s installment of the Best of Birchbox Man 2015 continues with one of my favorite types of items to get, fragrance and cologne samples!  Over the course of the year I’ve received 9 samples from a number of different brands, so narrowing it down my favorites was somewhat hard, but I managed to do it!


The Best Colognes from Birchbox Man 2015

English Laundry – Royal Aqua – This is the big winner for the year – if I was wearing cologne chances were it was this!  Billed a s a drink on the water, combining the simple style of an Englishman with floral note.

Clean – Classic – A scent that would only work for those guys comfortable pushing the link between “manly” & “unisex” but for those of us who are comfortable in this area.. it’s great!  The scent manages to complement without being overpowering.

Atelier Cologne – Great scent, it has strong lemon & citrus scents & seems like one that would work with anyone who prefers less traditionally “masculine” scents.


English Laundry – Cambridge Knight – This one surprised me, when I initially tired it I wasn’t a fan, but I love it now!  It has a musky base with black currant & pepper mixed in, I’m not stypically the biggest fan of these scents but the combination works!


Best of Birchbox Man 2015 – Skincare

This week’s round up for 2015 Best of Birchbox Man is going to focus on one that tends to get sent often… skincare. I’m like most guys and could absolutely use some help in this area, so I’m happy to receive these as often as they get sent out!

This is a hard category to review because there are so many different types of products and needs but ultimately these are just my top skin care items. If you have dry or sensitive skin these might not be best for you, likewise I included two aftershave samples, so for my beard buddies.. recommend those to a friend.

Best of 2015 Birchbox Man Skincare

Harrys Aftershave – this has the honor of being onne of the few items I’ve purchased in full size. The price point on this is great, just a few dollars more than Gilette but substantially higher quality. Great aftershave without the burn or drying you might get from a drug store option.

Baxter of California After Shave – The second aftershave I opted to inclde in this Best of 2015 list is from one of my all time favorite brands.   The texture and scent on this is awesome, if you like any other Baxter of California products you will love this!

Ursa Major Face Wash – I love this face wash for those days when you just feel really dirty! I can’t use it everyday, much too intense for that… but as a deep cleaner this is great! The scent is great & the fact that it’s all natural is a great bonus!

Coola After Sun -While this product hasn’t got much use recently it stands out as a favorite from the warmer months! I actually got this one during the Birchbox Live event after talking to some women who had it in their box previously. The scent is great, the cooling without being aloe, and fact that it immediately absorbs into the skin makes it the perfect post sun lotion!

DTRT Dear Matt – The final item to make this list is a recent sample, which took a few uses for me to fully understand and appreciate. The DRTR Dear Matt lotion is a matifying product, so if you have oily skin this is perfect for you! The texture is similar to other matifiers, has a great scent, & actually does what it claims. I find the matifying effect to hold for at least the work day without the need to reapply.  ‎

Birchbox 2015 – Best Lifestyle Products

Welcome to the Best in Birchbox Man 2015! Over the past year I’ve received products from probably at least 20 to 30 different brands. In this mix have been some great ones as well as a few duds, so I wanted to end this year of Birchbox Man by recapping the best products of 2015.

This week I want to focus on those products which in theory should still be getting used.. a LOT.. the Lifestyle product.

If you are subscriber to the Women’s Birchbox you might be wondering what this item is.. I know they don’t get this item typically, but our boxes cost $20 instead of $10… so we need a little something extra.

The Lifestyle products are typically ones that you get choose each month so I might have decided on these instead of others.. but that doesn’t mean that all of them have been winners.. in fact I could only come up with 5 that I’d recommend to others.


The List:

Cory Vines – The Path Shirt
This was one of my first Lifestyle products of 2015.. and its still my favorite.  This is a from a fitness focused brand, but can easily be worn  outside the gym without looking odd.  The fabric is incredibly soft, warm, & absorbent if you are using it for a workout.

This is Ground – Cordie Taco
When I first got the Cordie Tacos I was obsessed & wondering why I didn’t think of these my self.. they are so simple.. but so smart.  Over the year I’d found them very helpful during travel.

Sailor Made – Charger Bracelet
Is this a product that’s enriching my lifestyle in anyway… nope, but it is cute!  I love anything nautical so this item perfectly fits into my imaginary boat life.

CoalaTree – Nomad Backpack
This backpack is starting to show some wear and tear, so I can’t say that it’ll be sticking around for ever.. but it’s held up much longer than most things you buy for less than 20 bucks!

LSTN Headphones – Bowery Earbuds
I love these headphones for two reasons.. first they cord is soooo long!  If you constantly feel like you are pulling on your cords check this brand out!  The second reason is the volume, I’m not sure if I’ve always just had cheap ear buds before…. but this set really rocks!



World AIDS Day

Today is December 1st.  This date means lots of things to lots of people, but for me it’s World AIDS day.

World AIDS day is…

a day to remember

a day to fight

a day to live

a day to do something.

I was born in the 80’s not too many years after this virus started spreading around the US.  I grew up in Southeastern Ohio, so you can imagine that sexual education in the 90’s wasn’t the most comprehensive program, I learned about HIV/AIDS from television & movies… and as a little gay boy I was terrified.  I saw the fight that Pedro Zamora put up on the Real World:San Francisco, the weight that HIV could put on a realtionship in the movie Jeffery (also Patrick Stewart is fabulous in this), & finally people living with HIV on Queer as Folk.

Suffice to say…. I was scared to death of HIV/AIDS… and rightfully so!  The issue was that while I knew what it was, & how to avoid it.. I didn’t know what else I could do, sure I’d buy some of the Product (RED) stuff at Gap, donate a dollar or two, but there had to be more right?

It took a few years… but I eventually learned there was & is!  The fight against HIV/AIDS isn’t over yet, here are some ways that you can get involved:

  • Donate – not just to the big national organizations, but local organizations need your support too!
  • Volunteer – there are plenty of organizations that would love to have you volunteer with them!
  • Ride – Yes all you fitness folks.. You can participate in one of many rides around the country.
  • Be a Guinea Pig – ok sort of… getting involved in Clinical Research can make a HUGE difference on the medical front.
  • Talk about it – I think that one of the biggest things we can do is just be willing to talk about HIV/AIDS.  We have to fight the stigma!