April Birchbox

It’s that time of the month again (so to speak)! This month’s theme (and I apologize for not noticing there was one last month – must’ve been the excitement of the first time!) is “natural wonders.” This means “bringing things back down to earth with fresh products that take inspiration from the world around us.” Whatever you say, dear.

First up is my old pal Taylor Swift and her Wonderstruck perfume:
I’ve said everything I needed to about her before; I’ll only add here that I see no nexis whatsoever to the month’s purported theme!
Next, we have the Alima Pure Organic Nourishing Lipbalm [sic]:
That’s fine as brand names go; nothing exciting or novel here. Still, I can always use a new lip balm. My husband and daughters steal mine frequently, and it’s the number one item that survives the washing machine. We do have the cleanest lip balm in town, I always say!
J.R. Watkins Hand and Cuticle Salve is next. 
I love a good clumsy French translation, as you well know. Translating into French from English isn’t a matter of one-to-one equivalences. French simply requires more wording in order to convey a flavor or scent name. So where we say “Aloe and green tea,” in French we probably need to say “aux aloès et au thé vert” – that is, “with green tea and aloe.” Meanwhile, the French on the label rings a bit discordant alongside the J.R. Watkins brand, which sounds more like something ranch hands would use after a day of herding cattle. But since I keep harping on how dry the climate is here, you know I’ll use this.
Next up, Jurlique Moisture Replenishing Day Cream:

I’m not wild about the phonetics of “Jurlique.” The “jurl-” part reminds me unpleasantly of the slang written and spoken “gurrl,”and the “-ique” suffix alongside it just creates a mark that sounds very 60s and not in a good, Mad Men way. I got some background on the brand from my favorite resource – Beautypedia – and it seems that the M.O. of this Australian company is to capture the “life-force” of the plants that are used in the products. Beautypedia isn’t impressed with those claims, and deems this particular product merely average. What shocks me is that a day cream from Australia contains no sunscreen; any sampling I’ll do of this will only be for nighttime use.
Finally, there’s the “Lifestyle Extra” in the package – dropps laundry detergent:
The package claims because these “pacs” (nice generic term to add to your genericize-able trademark; good work!) are concentrated to contain six times less detergent than the amount normally used, energy use is correspondingly reduced. Neat idea, though the eco-friendliness comes at a price – these retail for $6 for a pack of 20. My only beef is with some of the package copy: “designed to make laundry laundr-easy” makes Jess a little queasy!