Kings Road Apothecary Herbal Subscription Unboxing & Review-October, 2015

Kings Road Apothecary Indie Herbal Subscription Unboxing & Review October 2015 Crunchy Parent

King’s Road Apothecary is a company owned by herbalist Rebecca Altman. In addition to selling handcrafted seasonal herbal products through her site, Rebecca offers a monthly indie subscription service. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing is $54.00 plus shipping each month when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The October theme was “Into the Dreaming.” As of this writing, the October box is still available for purchase. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

I was kindly sent this box for review purposes. I received no additional compensation for my review. All opinions are my own.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video. If you want to better acquaint yourself with some of the herbalism terms that I use throughout the video you can do that through the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs. If you just want to see closeup photos of what was in the box, scroll on down.

The idea behind the KRA Surprise Boxes is that each month Rebecca picks the theme for the box, gathers plant material local to her that fits with the theme, and takes the month to reflect on the plants and experiment with new recipes for products. Her four favorites end up in the box. This month’s theme was less focused on local, wildcrafted herbs and was inspired by kava kava, cacao, and palo santo, and their capacities to evoke relaxed, dreamy states.

The box came with the entire contents wrapped in a piece of muslin, hand dyed in beautiful shades of mossy green. All items were carefully protected with bubble wrap, individually wrapped in coordinated tissue paper, and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a watercolor painting of beautiful green leaves created by Rebecca exclusively for this box. On the back of the drawing were recipes for palo santo ice cream with honey and dates and for a palo santo and cacao tincture. In addition to the above, the box included a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents.

Kings Road Apothecary Kava kava hot chocolate and Kava & Palo Santo massage oil crunchy parent

The first item that I pulled from the box was a bag of Kava Kava hot chocolate. (Approximate weight 2 oz., ARV: $4.50) The blend mixes kava kava along with cacao, Dutch cocoa, coconut, cinnamon, and vanilla. I was a bit surprised at first with the earthinesss of the flavor profile influenced by the kava and cacao, but then I realized that this was not a packet of instant cocoa; it was a blend of herbs and spices. I added some coconut milk and honey to my cup and enjoyed the sophisticated, rich, flavor and the slightly numbing quality on my tongue. With the relaxing properties of the kava, this would make a nice beverage to wind down with at the end of a day.

Next in the box was a glass bottle of Kava Kava and Palo Santo Massage Oil (1 oz., value: $12.00). The massage oil is a blend of several different moisturizing oils that have been infused with palo santo and kava kava and then scented with essential oils of coconut, cacao, vanilla, palo santo, and sandalwood. The oil was easy to work with for massage; providing moisture and glide without being absorbed too quickly. The addition of the kava kava should help support muscle relaxation, another great quality for a massage product. The fragrance was absolutely delicious. I found that the palo santo and cacao were the most pronounced notes to me. I absolutely love the scent, as evidenced by my initial reaction to it in the video.

Kings Road Apothecary October unboxing review kava bath decoction spiced kava elixir

The next product discovery was a jar of Kava and Coconut Bath Decoction. (4 oz., value: $8.00). The instructions were to boil the contents in a big stock pot for 20 minutes and then strain into the tub. I was a bit dubious about my ability to strain a big boiling pot of water into the tub without making a grand mess of it all, so I placed the bath decoction into some t-sacs, stapled them shut, and tossed them in the pot to boil. After 20 minutes, I poured the whole pot directly into a warm bath. The fragrant soak was heady with the scent of the coconut and cacao. After a long bath I felt the salts and kava kava had worked together to ease my muscles. My legs definitely felt wobblier than is typical for me when I exited the tub, and I was not at all upset that my bed was close by so I could cozy up and enjoy feeling warm and relaxed.

The final item in the box was a bottle of Spiced Kava Kava & Cacao Elixir (1 oz, ARV: $15.00). This elixir was exclusive to the box, but the KRA site has this similar kava kava elixir available for purchase. The description indicated that it would numb the mouth slightly, which I did experience when tasting it in the video. When I tried it again another day, I did not feel mouth numbing and neither did Rich when he tried it, so this may vary with use or user. The elixir is suggested to induce feelings of dreaminess. I am not sure that this was the case for me, but I did take it prior to going to bed so the dreaminess may have manifested in slumber for me. I will continue to experiment with the elixir, and would love to hear your reactions if you have tried it, or if you have used kava kava in the past to promote relaxation or dreaminess.

kings road apothecary indie herbal subscription October-into the dreaming

I really enjoyed this box. The focus and intention to promote relaxation and dreaminess seems so appropriate for the time of year when we tend to begin to focus on holidays and over-scheduling ourselves. I appreciated the reminder to slow down, relax, and tune into my creative spirit. I think that Kings Road Apothecary is such a unique subscription box offering. As I’ve said before, it feels a bit to me like being an artist’s benefactor. I love the idea that the cost of the subscription supports hands-on wildcrafting and creating unique, small-batch products that are so closely tied to nature.

As mentioned above, the October box is still available for purchase as are a few of the September boxes (you can see the September review here). The November box is also available for preorder. Its theme is Reishi and Hawthorn with the intention of grounding, centering, and calming amidst the mounting holiday excitement. Among the four herbal products included in the box may be any of the following, or other inspired creations: reishi, hawthorn and cacao bitters; reishi and wild mushroom salts; reishi and hawthorn spirit elixir; reishi and chaga body butter; wild reishi double strength elixir; deep forest tea: reishi, hawthorn, douglas fir, aralia californica; black reishi cocoa; reishi and hawthorn drizzling syrup; reishi, hawthorn, and cacao tea; reishi, Douglas fir, and hawthorn flower atmospheric mist; reishi and douglas fir foot bath/ bath soak.

As a reminder the KRA boxes are made using wild crafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only a limited number of boxes are available each month, so if a particular theme speaks to you, you may not wish to wait. Are you starting to feel the pull of the holiday energy as fall rolls along? What herbs do you turn to during times of stress?

If you would like to see my most recent comprehensive listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Herbal Subscription Unboxing & Review-September 2015 (Pinon & Sagebrush)

Crunchy Parent KRA September 2015 unboxing review picture

King’s Road Apothecary is a company owned by herbalist Rebecca Altman. In addition to selling handcrafted seasonal herbal products through her site, Rebecca offers a monthly indie subscription service. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing is $53.50 plus shipping each month when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The September theme was “Pinon and Sagebrush.” As of this writing, the September box is still available for purchase. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

I purchased this box and received no compensation for my review. All opinions are my own.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video. If you want to better acquaint yourself with some of the herbalism terms that I use throughout the video you can do that through the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs. If you just want to see closeup photos of what was in the box, scroll on down.

The idea behind the KRA Surprise Boxes is that each month Rebecca picks the theme for the box, gathers plant material local to her that fits with the theme, and takes the month to reflect on the plants and experiment with new recipes for products. Her four favorites end up in the box. I was very excited for this month’s box as I absolutely adore the rich scent of piñon pines and find the varieties of sage native to the Southwest to smell rich and fabulous. I was looking forward to seeing what Rebecca would create this month and to receiving the goodies.

Kings Road Apothecary September unboxing review-pinon sagebrush inserts painting

The box came with the entire contents wrapped in a piece of muslin, hand dyed in beautiful shades of green. All items were carefully protected with bubble wrap, individually wrapped in coordinated tissue paper, and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a watercolor painting of spring of sage and pine as well as pine and piñon cones penned by Rebecca exclusively for this box. On the back of the drawing were recipes for pine nut roca and for pine infused sugar. I love the flavor of flowers, herbs, and other botanicals in edibles, so I am happy to have these recipes to try. The roca calls for butter, but I think that I can make it with a simple substitution of either coconut oil or palm oil shortening. i think that pine infused sugar would be amazing with baked goods in fall and winter and I also think that it would make a unique holiday or hostess gift. In addition to the above, the box included a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents.

Kings Road apothecary indie herbal subscription september unboxing review pinon sagebrush tea and foot balm

The first item that I pulled from the box was a bag of Pinon Nut and Vanilla Black Tea, which is the same as the Pinon Toffee Black Tea listed on the KRA site, now sold out (approximately 1.5 oz oz.). The blend mixes black tea, oolong tea and puerh tea, along with with cacao, cardamom, vanilla, piñon cone, and roasted wild pine nuts, and then studs the whole mix with chunks of piñon toffee. The toffee in the tea is the same as the roca recipe included although the rock also adds chocolate. I am a big tea drinker, although I generally stick to herbal and other non-caffeinated teas. Receiving the KRA blends has nudged me to try some different teas and so far I have not responded with jitters or sleep disruption at all, so I’m happy. I made the tea with a bit of honey and a dollop of coconut milk cream. I was warming and gently spiced, and as I got closer to the bottom of the cup, I found myself getting a bit sad that I had drank it up so quickly. Fortunately there will be several more cups in my future with what was provided in the box. The tea gave me a very “autumn” feeling. I can see craving a cup of it after tromping around outside in the crisp air and fallen leaves.

Next in the box was a 2 oz. glass jar of Pinon and Juniper Foot Balm, which was available exclusively through the subscription box. The balm infuses piñon needles and resin, juniper berries and branches, and sagebrush leaves into a blend of organic sunflower, jojoba, coconut, and avocado oils. This mixture is enhanced with a mix of essential oils and stabilized with organic beeswax to produce the lightweight balm. The instructions suggest applying the balm to clean feet before bed and then wearing socks while you sleep to help the balm infuse into, and soften your skin. The balm does feel exceptionally light and softening. When I applied the balm to my skin, it felt silkier and softer almost instantly. The foot balm is also one of the best things that I have ever smelled. The fragrance is intense and very natural all at the same time, due no doubt to the layering of the infusion of fresh berries, branches, needles, and resin as well as essential oils into the blend. Closing my eyes and smelling the balm immediately transported me to a pine forest.

Kings Road Apothecary Herb Indie Subscription Box Unboxing Review October Pinon Sagebrush room spray and elixir

The next product discovery was a 1 oz. bottle of Pinon and Juniper Sagebrush Room Spray (value $10.00). This spray is a mix of pine and juniper hydrosols with pine resin and essential oils of pine, juniper, and sage. Rebecca created this blend to evoke the scent of the Pinon flats; the mix of plants and trees, fresh air, and sunshine. The spray has a “greener” scent than the foot balm, reminding me more of green pine needles and less of the earthier barks and resins brought through in the balm. Rebecca suggests using the spray to freshen a room, especially if someone is sick, as it can be helpful in killing airborne microbes.

The final item was a 1 oz. bottle of Pinon Flat Elixir, exclusive to the box. The multi-purpose elixir can be used medicinally to help with lung congestion or tightness or in smaller amounts as digestive bitters or to flavor cocktails. The blend of pine cones, needles, resin, and nuts along with sage, yarrow, mullein, and aralia (spikenard) tasted fresh, earthy, and very pleasant to me. I found it to be grounding, but others may experience it differently.

Kings Road Apothecary herbalist subscription box September 2015 Pinon Sagebrush box complete unboxing review

I greatly enjoy my Kings Road Apothecary boxes. They are a splurge relative to the typical monthly subscription box, but they are in a class of their own in terms of the freshness, seasonal appropriateness and relationship to herbal plant ingredients. I appreciate that someone across the country is out gathering plants that are not available in my region, and is working with them as I would to create incredible products far beyond what I have the knowledge or experience to create on my own. The products and recipes inspire me to work more directly with plants when I can get ahold of fresh plant materials, and to seek opportunities to learn more about medicinal plants and their many uses. It is difficult for me to assign values to the individual items in the boxes because they are often unique items that are exclusive to the box or the size of the product sold on the site is not listed so I cannot estimate the value of the sizes received. Nevertheless, this box feels very luxurious to me; handcrafted products that are created exclusively for a small group of subscribers with wildcrafted ingredients at their peak. I don’t think that I could want for better.

As mentioned above, this box is currently available for purchase if you want to capture this celebration of Pinon and Sagebrush before it is gone. The October box will focus on four plants, palo santo, cacao, hawthorn, and kava kava. It is designed especially, “the dream weavers, the witches, the makers, the edgewalkers,” and sounds rather magical to me. I notice that the October single box price is listed at $54.00, which is a 50 cent increase over the September box. Among the four herbal products included in the box may be any of the following, or other inspired creations: palo santo, sandalwood and kava infused cocoa body butter; smoked kava hot chocolate; cacao and hawthorn spiced syrup; kava, hawthorn and palo santo between the worlds elixir; kava, cacao and palo santo massage oil; palo santo and cacao ritual incense; smoked kava kava and palo santo ritual bath; hawthorn and cacao bitters; palo santo and cacao shimmering body oil (a deep bronze shimmer that looks like autumn leaves).

As a reminder the KRA boxes are made using wild crafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only a limited number of boxes are available each month. Are you going to snap up one of the remaining September boxes? I’m tempted just to have another jar of the incredible foot balm. Is the October box calling to you?

If you would like to see my most recent comprehensive listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Herbal Subscription Box Unboxing and Review-August 2015 (Cactus and Cool)

King’s Road Apothecary is a company owned by California herbalist Rebecca Altman. In addition to selling handcrafted seasonal herbal products through her site, Rebecca offers a monthly indie subscription service. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing is $53.50 plus shipping each month when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The August theme was “Cactus and Cool.” The August box is sold out, but as of this writing there are still a handful of September Surprise boxes available for purchase (more on those in a bit). To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video, during which you may feel compelled to toss slippery elm lozenges or bags of tea at the screen as you listen to me cough my way through the unboxing with a bothersome cold that still lingers. Sorry about that. If you want to better acquaint yourself with some of the herbalism terms that I use throughout the video you can do that through the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs. If you just want to see closeup photos of what was in the box, scroll on down.

The idea behind the KRA Surprise Box is that each month Rebecca picks the theme for the box, gathers plant material local to her that fits with the theme, and takes the month to reflect on the plants and experiment with new recipes for products. Her four favorites end up in the box. I was very excited for this month’s box as I have been really drawn to prickly pear cactus and its remarkable medicinal and skincare uses over the past several months. I am not sure if it is gaining a stronger foothold in our collective consciousness and consequently being used more, or if I am just so taken by it that I have had my eyes out for it everywhere that I go so I’m noting it more often. In any case, I was looking forward to seeing what Rebecca would create this month and to receiving the goodies.

King's Road Apothecary Subscription Box Unboxing Review August 2015 Cactus and Cool

The box came with the entire contents wrapped in a piece of muslin, hand dyed in beautiful shades of purple, berries, and wine. All items were carefully protected with bubble wrap, individually wrapped in coordinated tissue paper, and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a watercolor painting of a prickly pear cactus with beautiful bright pink blooms that was penned by Rebecca exclusively for this box. On the back of the drawing was a recipe for prickly pear fruit syrup and a prickly pear margarita. As luck would have it, a local market was having a sale on prickly pear fruit this week, so I have a bag of them ripening up in my kitchen waiting for their big moment to shine in these recipes. I love when my subscription boxes inspire me to try new things and discover new favorites. In addition to the above, the box included a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents, and an invitation to post box images on instagram to enter to win a little gift.

Kings Road Apothecary August Subscription box-cactus & cool

The first item that I pulled from the box was a bag of Prickly Pear and Hibiscus white tea (approximately 1 oz., maybe 2 oz.? I drank several cups before I could weigh it and also made the bag messy before the photo-op. Forgive me). The KRA site indicates that both prickly pear pads and hibiscus are good for soothing and moistening. At the time that I filmed the video I had an irritated, dry throat and nagging cough. Immediately after finishing the video I brewed myself some of this tea and continued to drink it in the days that followed because it helped my throat feel so much better (hence the reason why the bag looked far more full in the video than when I got around to taking the photo-oops).I do not generally drink caffeinated teas because I am often sensitive to caffeine, but I had no problems with this. Likewise, I am not much of a hibiscus fan, but I found the flavor enjoyable and appreciated the medicinal properties of the plant; accepting what it had to offer me with gratitude.

Next in the box was a 1 oz. bottle of Prickly Pear and Rose After Sun Potion. The lightweight gel combines prickly pear with aloe vera, rose, and calendula to provide quick soothing and cooling relief to skin that has been upset by too much sun. Although I have not spent too much time in the sun since receiving the box, I can say that in testing the product, it smells really good. There is a distinct rose presence but also something astringent and not quite citrusy that I cannot put my finger on. Maybe it’s what the inside of a prickly pear pad smells like. I don’t really know (if you do, please tell me because I’m terribly curious. I’m holding myself back from going downstairs to cut open and sniff a prickly pear paddle right now). The product was exclusive to this box and is not available for purchase through the KRA site.

KRA herbal subscription box cactus and cool-prickly pear summer heat relief elixir & prickly pear and sage wound powder

The next product discovery was a 1 oz. bottle of Prickly Pear and Rose Summer Heat Relief formula. Unfortunately the instructions on this bottle were accidentally mislabeled and the ingredients were incomplete (sometimes small-batch products made by human hands will come with the occasional human error; a small price to pay if you ask me). When I reached out the Rebecca, she offered apologies and clarified that the elixir is to be taken at a dose of “3-30 drops, 3 times a day or whenever you’re feeling extra aggravated.” I may have suggested that as a mom of three young kids/tweens I have occasion to feel extra aggravated that is not even related to the summer heat, but I am sure that it is excellent for heat relief too. I can say that the elixir is delicious. I don’t think that I’ll ever get enough of how wonderful rose tastes in anything and everything. I wish that the elixir had arrived a couple of weeks sooner. We spent a sweltering day at a local Renaissance Faire recently, and by the day’s end all of the children were hot, aggravated, and looking like this.

Hot & sweaty day at the Renaissance Faire. Some Summer Heat Relief elixir would have hit the spot I am sure

Hot & sweaty day at the Renaissance Faire. Some Summer Heat Relief elixir would have hit the spot I am sure.

Bet that potion sure would have come in handy, and I would have felt all Renaissance-y talking about getting my herbal elixir from the apothecary to treat our ailments. I know that I will get good use out of this potion on hot days or whenever that hot aggravated feeling sweeps over us. This product was another box exclusive.

The final item was a 1 oz. bottle of Prickly Pear and White Sage Wound Powder. I have been very intrigued by wound powders. I have just recently become aware of them and they are quite unlike anything that I grew up using to treat cuts, scrapes, or burns. I guess that I was more accustomed to using a salve, cream or ointment to treat wounds, so I am finding herbal powders very novel and fascinating. This wound powder blends prickly pear with yarrow, white sage, rose, plantain, and calendula to help fight potential infection and promote healing. I greatly appreciate being able to build an herbal first aid kit and will be happy to grab this the next time that one of us gets a bit banged up. The powder smells fantastic, but I may be biased because I could sit and sniff white sage happily all day long (more on that in a moment too). This item was yet another box exclusive and is not offered for sale at this time.

King's Road Apothecary Herbal Subscription Box Unboxing & Review August 2015 Cactus & Cool

I always look forward to my Kings Road Apothecary boxes. I find Rebecca’s creativity to be inspiring and she shares so much of her process and research through her email newsletter as well (signup for the free newsletter here). I love seeing and using her formulas and find them to be delicious, effective, and they all smell wonderful. As I have been subscribing over several months I see how her products have woven their way into my life from my kitchen to my shower, to my first aid kit. I don’t think that there is any other subscription box out there currently that offers a comparable herbal experience month to month. I really enjoy supporting a small business and feel connected to the process by what Rebecca shares with her subscribers as she works on the items throughout the month. This box feels very luxurious to me; handcrafted products that are created exclusively for a small group of subscribers with wildcrafted ingredients at their peak. I don’t think that I could want for better.

I am anxiously anticipating the arrival of the September box, which focuses on what may be two of my very favorite herbal ingredients, at least based on olfactory delight alone. The September box theme is “Pinion and Sagebrush” and is inspired by the plants one would find walking the pinion flats of southern California in the fall. The box is designed to be a sensory experience, with products intended to delight at least four of the five senses. Among the four herbal products included in the box may be any of the following: pinon, white sage, and sagebrush room and body spray; white sage, juniper, and sagebrush smudge sticks; juniper and sagebrush foot cream; juniper, sage, and pinon digestive bitters; pinon and juniper scented candle (with a hint of white sage); wild pinon pine nut liqueur; pinon flat elixir (for lung health); pinon resin infused body oil; pinon and pinon nut caramel black tea; or pinon oxymel.

As a reminder, the KRA boxes are made using wild crafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only a limited number of boxes are available each month. Are you going to grab a September box before they sell out? I can only imagine how the whole room will smell when I open that box. I can hardly wait!

If you would like to see my most recent comprehensive listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Herbal Subscription Box Unboxing and Review-July 2015 (Lime and Coconut)

I took advantage of the Spring Solstice sale at Kings Road Apothecary in March and signed up for a multi-month subscription to the “Surprise Box,” which brought the individual box price down to $47.38 each including shipping. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing recently increased to $53.50 plus shipping when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The July theme was “Lime and Coconut.” As of this writing the July box is still available for purchase as is the August box. More details about the August box below. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video, with my oldest child Eva as the special guest star. If you prefer to skip right to the photos and the nitty gritty, keep scrolling down. Also, if you are newer to herbalism and herbal-based products, I have explained many frequently-used herbalism terms in the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs.

Kings Road Aothecary July 2015 Subscription Box Enclosures

The box came with the entire contents wrapped in a hand-dyed piece of seafoam green cotton muslin and tied with kitchen twine. All items were carefully protected with bubble wrap, individually wrapped in green-themed coordinated tissue paper, and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a beautiful drawing of a beachy palm tree scene penned by Rebecca exclusively for this box. On the back of the drawing was a recipe for the spiced hibiscus syrup and for a hibiscus mojito. In addition, there was a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents, and an invitation to post box images on instagram to enter to win a little gift.

Kings Road Apothecary July 2015 Subscription Box-Lime and Coconut

As I’ve mentioned before, each month Rebecca picks the theme for the box, gathers plant material and takes the month to reflect on the plants and experiment with new recipes for products. Her four favorites end up in the box. This month’s winners started with a small (2 oz.?) bottle of spiced hibiscus syrup. This is the same syrup that was included as a recipe on the back of the drawing. I am delighted that Rebecca shared the recipe because this syrup is beautiful and delicious. I can see it making its way into a lot of summer drink recipes, including the Hibiscus Mojito recipe, also included on the back of the enclosed drawing. Unfortunately, the syrup was also leaky. It tended to cling to the threads on the screw top so that when the cap was removed, the syrup ran down the bottle. This was managed (and enjoyed) via licking fingers as shown in the video, but was a bit sticky. This syrup is unique and exclusive to the box so the value is unknown.

Next in the box was a dropper bottle of Lime and Bay Leaf Bitters. This blend of vodka, lime, star anise, gentian root, and two varieties of bay will help to stimulate and aid in digestion, or can be used to flavor cocktails. I enjoyed the sour lime flavor, grounded by the bay and other herbs and spices. This exact variety of bitters was exclusive to the box, but similar ones can be found at Kings Road Apothecary here (1 oz. retail value $15.00).

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box July 2015 lime and coconut

The other two items included a deluxe sample size of Summer Glow: Lime and Coconut Body Oil (1 oz. retail value $13.00). The oil is light and super-moisturizing, with gold micro shimmer for a summer glow. It contains coconut Co2, which was an ingredient that I had not heard of before. After putting my finely-tuned Googling skills to work, I learned that coconut CO2 is the product of extracting coconut oil from coconut pulp with carbon dioxide. The resulting coconut CO2 preserves the luscious coconut aroma, allowing for a natural coconut scent to be added to body care products. All I can say is that the body oil smells really yummy. It reminds me of key lime shortbread cookies, although Eva thought that it smelled like pumpkin and cardamom (she must be missing fall). In any case, I think that the oil is glowy, moisturizing, and deliciously scented; making it perfect for using after a relaxing day at the beach.

The final item was a deluxe sample size of Coconut and Vanilla Sugar Scrub (4 oz., value $12.50). Rebecca had mentioned on Facebook that during the experimental process in preparing for the box, she had initially added more essential oils to this sugar scrub. In making the batch for the boxes, she was so struck by the delicious scent of the sugar, coconut, and vanilla that she decided to stop there. I think that was an excellent choice because this smells just. so. good. I made everyone who I could find take a sniff. We had differing opinions as to whether it smelled like macaroons, cookie dough, frosting, etc. We agreed that it smelled like something that you’d want to eat with a spoon. I fully intend to squirrel this away until we move next month and I luxuriate in the master bathroom (and bathtub) that I have pined for. I’m not going to leave it until I am all pruney and smell exactly like this sugar scrub. As of this writing, this scrub is not available for purchase, but you can find similar products on the KRA site here.

Kings Road Apothecary July 2015

I always enjoy receiving my Kings Road Apothecary boxes. Compared to other boxes they may seem like a bit of a splurge because there is not a dramatic item value relative to the price paid as is typical of more mainstream beauty boxes. That said, they are so beautifully curated and crafted. I find the contents so inspiring for my own herbal creations, and I discover new products and ingredients to incorporate into the things that I make (going to get my hands onto some of that coconut CO2). I also appreciate receiving Rebecca’s email newsletter that talks about the theme of the month while she works on creating the recipes for the boxes. I feel like I learn so much about plants and their uses, and I get better acquainted with plants that are not native to my region (signup for the newsletter here; no purchase necessary). Additionally, I think that there is something special about discovering and receiving indie subscription boxes in the mix of crunchy-friendly subscription boxes that I receive. Not only are you supporting a small business, generally run by one person or family, but you are also discovering products and companies that will only be found there, not across other subscription box services. Something about that feels exclusive and precious.

At this moment, the July Kings Road Apothecary box is still available on the KRA site. The August box with a Cactus and Cool theme is currently available for preorder and is scheduled to ship for arrival around August 24th. The box will include four herbal items for home, health, or body. The four items in the box may be chosen from among the following list of brainstormed items (or may be some related spontaneous brilliant idea): Shimmering coconut + cactus facial serum, Nopal and hibiscus white tea, a summer cold infusion blend, Cactus and coconut after-sun potion, a calming summer heat elixir, Cactus fruit liqueur, Prickly pear + cucumber facial mist, Cactus + rose burn and wound powder (great for sunburn, or as an addition to your first aid kit), Cactus flower gut healing tea, Prickly pear + hibiscus flower face cream, or Rose + cactus flower elixir.

As a reminder the KRA boxes are made using wild crafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only a limited number of boxes are available each month. Are you going to grab a July box before they are gone? Does Cactus and Cool sound like it will hit the spot for August?

If you would like to see my most recent comprehensive listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box Unboxing and Review-June 2015 (White Sage and Clarity)

I took advantage of the Spring Solstice sale at Kings Road Apothecary in March and signed up for a multi-month subscription to the “Surprise Box,” which brought the individual box price down to $47.38 each including shipping. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing recently increased to $53.50 plus shipping when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The June theme was “White Sage and Clarity.” As of this writing the June box is sold out, but the July box is available for purchase. More details about the July box below. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video. If you prefer to skip right to the photos and the nitty gritty, keep scrolling down. Also, if you are newer to herbalism and herbal-based products, I have explained many frequently-used herbalism terms in the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs.

KRA June 2015 box inserts

The box came with the entire contents wrapped in a hand-dyed piece of sage green cotton muslin and tied with more green kitchen twine and a small bell. All items were individually wrapped in green-themed coordinated tissue paper and tied with green kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a beautiful drawing of sage leaves penned by Rebecca exclusively for this box, the back of which included some of Rebecca’s thoughts on the topic of clarity. In addition, there was a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents.

KRA June 2015 box scrub and elixir

As I’ve mentioned before, each month Rebecca picks the theme for the box, gathers plant material and takes the month to reflect on the plants and experiment with new recipes for products. Her four favorites end up in the box. This month’s winners started with a White Sage and Clarity cleansing body scrub (4 oz. retail value: $12.50). The scrub is a blend of herbs, including various sages and mints as well as basil and coriander in a base of oils and dead sea salt. I love the smell of this scrub. The sage gives it an earthy base, which is brightened by the mint. The whole thing smells like a really good cup of tea. The salt granules are just the right size to provide some real scrubbing action without being too harsh. The oil provides excellent moisture to newly exfoliated skin. This exact scrub is not available for purchase, but there are other similar scrubs currently featured on the KRA site here.

Next in the box was a dropper bottle of White Sage and Clarity Elixir (1 oz. retail value $15.00) Described as a calming, grounding, clarity-inducing elixir the blend includes sages, monkeyflower, blue curls, and vervain. In addition to helping to break through mental stagnation this herbal mix should also help to address intestinal gas and bloating. I was surprised by the pleasant flavor of this elixir, which to me had a hint of citrus up against the sage. This one-of-a-kind elixir is exclusive to this box and no longer available for purchase.

KRA June 2015 salve and candle

The other two items included a White Sage and Pinon salve (1 oz. retail value $8.00). If you are not familiar with piñon it is a type of pine tree native to the southwest, and is where pine nuts come from. It has a very distinctive, fresh scent that I cannot get enough of. It’s like a pine tree ate some citrus fruits. It’s fantastic. In this salve, white sage pairs with piñon to make a healing, antimicrobial salve for cuts, scratches, and other skin irritations. Also exclusive to this box and not available for purchase, but similar salves are shown on the KRA site here.

The final item was a White Sage and Basil Solstice Candle (value $14.00). The soy wax candle is scented with essential oils of mints, sages, and basil and comes in a tin, perfect for travel or for burning at home. Rebecca’s instructions suggest that you reflect on the summer solstice time and set a strong intention to carry you through the rest of the year, then light the candle, focusing your intention. Burn it for at least an hour on the first day, then after that every time you want to reaffirm your intention. Currently there are still some candles available for purchase so be sure to scoop one up before they are all gone too.

Kings Road Apothecary June 2015 indie subscription box

I really enjoy receiving my Kings Road Apothecary boxes. Compared to other boxes they may seem like a bit of a splurge because there is not a dramatic item value relative to the price paid as is typical of more mainstream beauty boxes. That said, they are so beautifully curated and crafted. Every item is created with the best of ingredients and aimed at supporting health and well-being. I also find the contents so inspiring for my own herbal creations, and really appreciate receiving Rebecca’s email newsletter that talks about the theme of the month while she works on creating the recipes for the boxes. I feel like I learn so much about plants and their uses, and I get better acquainted with plants that are not native to my region (signup for the newsletter here; no purchase necessary). I also have found that after receiving subscription boxes from many larger companies over the past year, there is something special about discovering and receiving indie subscription boxes in the mix. Not only are you supporting a small business, generally run by one person or family, but you are also discovering products and companies that will only be found there, not across other subscription box services. Something about that feels exclusive and precious.

Although the June Kings Road Apothecary box is sold out, the July box with a Lime and Coconut theme is available for purchase and is scheduled to ship for arrival around July 20th. In addition to the four herbal items for home, health, or body, the box will also come with artwork and recipes and a few California bay leaves. All of this will come wrapped in a coconut-dyed piece of fabric (either natural cotton, linen or silk). The four items in the box may be chosen from among the following list of brainstormed items (or may be some related spontaneous brilliant idea): Coconut + lime + bay leaf sugar scrub, Coconut milk bath, Lime and bay leaf bitters, Coconut + bay + lime shimmering body oil, Coconut + rose facial glow serum, Lime + California bay leaf room spritz, Coconut + rose skin treatment (for after sun), Coconut-lime-bay-rum liqueur, Lime leaf and cactus white tea, Preserved limes, Sweet lime and coconut syrup, Lime and coconut candle, Coconut + rose facial mist, Rose + coconut water hydrating elixir, Coconut + lime deodorant.

As a reminder the KRA boxes are made using wild crafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only a limited number of boxes are available each month. As of this writing there are about 10 July boxes remaining. Are you going to grab a July box?

If you would like to see my most recent comprehensive listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Barganic Alert: Kings Road Apothecary 3-day Fall Sale

Crunchy Parent Barganic Alert: Kings Road Apothecary 3-day fall sale

As seen in the Crunchy Parent Ultimate Guide to Crunchy-Friendly Subscription Boxes, King’s Road Apothecary is a indie herbal company owned by herbalist Rebecca Altman. KRA offers a subscription service of wildcrafted and handmade products through their monthly surprise boxes. The Kings Road Apothecary site also sells other handcrafted seasonal herbal products to support a healthier, happier body inside and out with items such as teas, elixirs, and salves; candles, oils, and serums.

In celebration of her upcoming birthday, Rebecca is offering 15% off all orders now through Monday night. Just enter the code HAPPYBIRTHDAY at checkout. Subscription boxes qualify for this promotion, and I noticed the September, October, and November boxes were all still available as of this writing, as are a handful of six-month subscription shares. In addition to the subscription boxes, services such as a private consultation with a custom made elixir; best-selling products like the Busted Joint Ointment; and subscription box favorites such as Coconut & Vanilla Sugar Scrub and Kava Kava & Palo Santo Massage Oil are all available to purchase.

To get a sense of what to expect from the Kings Road Apothecary Surprise Boxes, you can see my unboxing and reviews from prior months here. I will be reviewing the October box in the days ahead, but spoiler: it smelled wonderful and was a box filled with relaxation.

Are you going to take advantage of this sale? what are some of your favorite KRA products or healing and nourishing herbs?

**Barganic Alerts are an effort to spread awareness about affordable crunchy goods and services (and here’s why). They are not endorsements, nor am I compensated in any way. They tend to be time-limited, and often go quickly. To make sure that you are always in the know, subscribe to CrunchyParent.com to receive emails of all Barganic Alerts as soon as they are posted**

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

The Cosmic Box Subscription Box Unboxing and Review-July 2015 (relaxation)

The Cosmic Box July 2015 Box

The Cosmic Box is a recently launched indie subscription service aimed at sending you a cosmically amazing care package for the soul. This lifestyle box is curated by a holistic nurse, and is designed for the free-spirited and eco-conscious. Each box includes a mix of 3-6 trial and full size products, or 1-2 luxury full size items. Every box is hand packed and sent with heaps of love. You will find items ranging from toxin free skin care, organic/gmo free artisan edibles, unique home goods, gems and more. A portion of the sale from every box goes to support a charity, which varies from month-to-month. The July box sales supported the charity Wild Aid, whose mission is to end illegal wildlife trading.

Boxes cost $29 per month, which includes shipping, and are less with multi-month subscriptions. Right now, first time subscribers can use the code FIRSTBOX to receive 20% off of their first month’s subscription.

I purchased this box and was not compensated in any way for this review. All opinions are my own.

If you would like to see the live-action unboxing which features my sweet middle child this month, please enjoy the video unboxing below. If you prefer to skip right to the product close-ups and details, scroll down past the video.

The box came well-packaged in a small box, distinguished by a cute owl “The Cosmic Box” sticker. Everything arrived to me safe and intact. The July box featured a relaxation theme.
As you can see in the video, one of the first things that I noticed upon opening the box was how wonderful it all smelled. I am very sensitive and responsive to scents. I love subscribing to crunchy-friendly subscription boxes, knowing that the great smells will be all-natural and not headache-inducing for me. I always enjoy taking that first sniff of every box. This one was really fantastic, and did trigger a relaxed and happy vibe. The box smelled like sassafras, lemon grass, and other such deliciousness.
The Cosmic Box July 2015 Free GWP

I had only recently discovered The Cosmic Box, but when I stumbled across them they were advertising a promotion for a free pair of handcrafted earrings with a new subscription. I could not pass it up, and was thrilled when I opened the box and found these beautiful copper lotus petal earrings from Bright Star & Buffalo (value $25.00). They are delicate, nature-themed, and completely my style. This promotion is no longer available and this free gift with purchase was not included in all of the July boxes. What was included in all of the July boxes was an information card describing the box contents and letting you know where you can follow The Cosmic Box on social media.

The Cosmic Box July 2015 sweetgrass and tea

Among the first items that I saw in the box was a long braid of what appeared to be dried grass, but smelled far better than any grass I’ve even encountered. It turns out that it was a 12” braid of Washington grown sweetgrass, something that I had never seen before. According to The Cosmic Box’s website, sweetgrass has been enjoyed historically for it’s calming, clearing and spiritual properties. They describe the scent as sweet, warm, and vanilla-like, although I personally thought that it smelled sweet and mildly woodsy with a hint of licorice. The Cosmic Box recommend using the sweetgrass for smudging, or for just resting in a bowl. I did try lighting the sweetgrass, but did not find the smoke to be as fragrant or pleasant as the dried grass itself. That said, after seeing this Organic Authority article that The Cosmic Box mentioned on their site, I realize that I did not follow the proper sweetgrass smudging instructions. I may have burned a part of the braid that was too dry to provide a fragrant smoke. I will need to try again. I do not know the exact value of the sweetgrass included in the box, but I found this source, suggesting an approximate retail value of $1.30 for a single braid.

Also discovered in the box was a deluxe sample size tin of six pyramid-shaped, compostable tea bags by indie brand Flying Bird Botanicals. The Peaceful Spirit tea is mixed by hand; blending organic and wild crafted herbs such as lemon balm, rosemary, and gotu kola, which is then packaged in a recyclable tin (value, $9.00) The Cosmic Box also included a code for 10% off purchases at Flying Bird Botanicals.

The Cosmic Box July 2015 serum and candle

The next item in the box was Blissoma’s Stress Relief Serum (full size, value $10.99). Packaged in a glass roll-on vial, this blend is perfect to pop in my purse to have on-hand when I need a bit of calm. According to Blissoma, the serum blends three forms of chamomile with peppermint, lavender, and ginger to help cool and calm. It is recommended to ease muscle tension and headaches. I grabbed for it when I was feeling a headache coming on the other day and applied it to my temples and at the base of my head. After rubbing it in a bit, I found the cooling sensation and the uplifting fragrance helpful. As an aside, one of the three forms of chamomile used in the serum is chamomile CO2. If you watched my recent Kings Road Apothecary unboxing, you know that I spied coconut CO2 in the ingredients there. According to the Blissoma site, the CO2 extract is the most true, concentrated, and clean essence of a plant. It seems to be the latest, greatest plant ingredient that is just popping up everywhere.

The final treasure that I again smelled before I saw, was a small tea light candle (approx. .5 oz.; value $2.50) by indie brand House of Good Juju. Handcrafted during the New Moon, the Aura Cleansing candle blends soy wax with dried herbs, crystals, and essential oils. It is designed to help balance and cleanse your aura to allow for better flow of positive energy. This candle was beautiful and smelled divine. I personally recognized the lemongrass scent as a standout as it is one of my favorite scents. I said in the video that I was going to wait to burn the candle until after our move next month but I just couldn’t. I lit the candle while writing this review and enjoyed the scent greatly. I will look forward to using this in our new home when I feel a need for balancing or to prepare for yoga or meditation. Interestingly, this same Aura Cleansing tea light from House of Good Juju was also included as a bonus item in the current BuddhiBox Jewelry subscription box. It is unusual for two identical items to overlap in subscription boxes at the same time, so I thought that was noteworthy, although certainly not a big deal. The Cosmic Box also included a code for 10% off purchases at House of Good Juju.

The Cosmic Box appears to be another option among the growing trend of subscription boxes focused on positive energy, natural healing, and zen. I thought that the box was well curated and represented the relaxation theme, in addition to The Cosmic Box’s overall mission. I like that The Cosmic Box gives a portion of the sale of each box to charity, and would love to see a little information about the chosen charity included in the box. I think that it can be easy to forget the charity piece when unboxing if it is not mentioned, and it is such a nice part of the box’s concept.

The overall value of this month’s box, excluding my free promotional gift was approximately $23.79, which is lower than I’d like to see for the $29.00 purchase price. The free gift promotion more than doubled the value of the box, however so I do feel like I got very good value in that respect. Despite the less-than-impressive dollar value, I really liked everything included in the box and thought that it was a good fit for my lifestyle. I have already put many of the items to use and discovered new brands that I probably would not have found otherwise. Not only is The Cosmic Box an indie subscription box option, but they appear to go out of their way to promote other indie businesses. As with making conscious choices to support small business, indie subscription boxes mean that you are often supporting an individual or family-owned business. The Cosmic Box seems to strive to go a step beyond by paying the small business concept forward to other indie brands and to promote charities as well. I think that this adds “cosmic” value to the purchase. I am curious to learn more about this box in the months ahead. What did you think about the July Cosmic Box?

If you would like to see the most recent Crunchy Parent List of Crunchy-Friendly Subscription Boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos or reviews, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

**Note, item value for the House of Good Juju candle was provided to CrunchyParent.com by Kat, founder of The Cosmic Box, for the purpose of reporting in this review**

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box Unboxing-May 2015 (Ocotillo and Wild Rose)

Kings Road Apothecary is a small, herbal apothecary business, owned and run by a woman named Rebecca. KRA features small batch, handmade herbal products for body, home, and health, with an emphasis on seasonally wildcrafted and organic ingredients. They offer a monthly “Surprise Box” indie subscription service. Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. Box pricing recently increased starting with this month’s box to $53.50 plus shipping when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions include shipping. The May theme was “Ocotillo and Wild Rose.” Unfortunately, the May box is no longer available but there are still a handful of June boxes available for purchase. More details about the June box below. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

Please enjoy the complete unboxing video. If you prefer to skip right to the photos and the nitty gritty, keep scrolling down. Also, as I mention in the video, sometimes it is challenging to keep all of the herbalism terms straight. If you find it confusing to distinguish a salve, ointment, and cream or an oxymel, shrub, and cordial, I have explained them all in the Crunchy Parent Herbal 101: Glossary of Common and Unusual Herbalism Terms and 50+ Great Ideas for Using Herbs.

Kings Road Apothecary May 2015 enclosures

The box came with all items individually wrapped in coordinated tissue paper and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the four herbal items, the box also came with a copy of a beautiful drawing of ocotillo blossoms and wild roses penned by Rebecca exclusively for this box. On the back of the drawing was a recipe for Rose Gulkland, which was described as an ayurvedic rose petal paste. The box also included a letter from Rebecca describing the box contents and a small, hand stamped, muslin, drawstring bag that contained a small piece of rose quartz crystal. Rebecca suggested that the rose quartz be carried as a talisman or to be dropped into water and allowed to sit overnight to charge the water with creative energy.

Kings Road Apothecary May 2015 tea and oxymel

The first item that I unwrapped was a bag of Hawthorn and Rose Creativity Blend Tea, approximately 1 oz. by weight (estimated retail value: $5.00). Blending herbs and flowers, the tea is described as being a calming, relaxing, creativity-enhancing decaffeinated tea blend. This tea blend appears to have been made exclusively for this box. Other Kings Road Apothecary teas can be found for purchase here.

Discovered next was a 2 oz. glass dropper bottle of Strawberry and Wild Rose Oxymel. The oxymel blends roses and strawberries with other other flowers, berries, organic apple cider vinegar, and raw honey to make a concentrate that can either be dosed by drops or more commonly added to sparkling water over ice to make a refreshing drink. This item was another box exclusive. I saw no other oxymels available for purchase on the KRA site, or really anywhere in my Google adventures. Therefore, I have to consider the value of this little gem to be priceless.

Kings Road Apothecary May 2015 oil and elixir

The other two items included a 1 oz. glass bottle of Wild Rose and Santal Body Oil. This oil smelled of roses, and was a smooth, silky blend of rose, sandalwood, and ocotillo blossoms in a base of many nourishing and moisturizing fruit, seed, and nut oils. This would make a beautiful body oil for use after shower or bath, or as a massage oil. Although the online descriptions and bottles do not specify, I believe the bottle sold online to be a 2 oz. size, based upon the size and pricing of this similar oil, therefore I am estimating the value on the 1 oz. bottle included in the box at $13.00.

The final item was a 1 oz. glass dropper bottle of Ocotillo and Rose Heart Center Elixir (value $15.00). This calming and uplifting heart-centered elixir is designed to connect you to the core of who you are. This was another box-exclusive item, highlighting roses and ocotillo in addition to other natural and organic ingredients. Other KRA elixirs can be explored here.

Kings Road Apothecary May 2015 subscription box

Overall, I continue to be happy with this subscription. The value is not as high as with many other more mainstream subscription boxes, but I think of myself as less of a consumer and more of a supporter when I purchase this indie subscription. I like that I am supporting a small woman-owned business as well as the craft of herbalism. I love the curation of the box and the care that goes into the packaging and to each overall theme. I see added value from the KRA newsletter which discusses the box theme throughout the month and links to additional resources and recipes. I also find that the box items inspire me to learn new things about herbalism and expand my own herbal crafting. Lastly, because the items are made seasonally and in small batches, sometimes the items included are entirely exclusive to the box recipients, and many of the ingredients used are fairly esoteric and not often seen in mainstream products (e.g., ocotillo).

The theme for the June box is White Sage + Clarity and will start shipping on June 18th. The box items will come wrapped in a sage-dyed piece of natural fabric (cotton, silk or linen), with a printed drawing and recipe tucked inside, and a few sage leaves for burning and purifying your space. The four items in the box will be chosen from among white sage, black sage, wild rose and monkey flower smudge stick; white and black sage body scrub; coastal sage and blue curls healing salve; white sage and blue curls infused facial serum; white sage clarity elixir; hummingbird sage infused honey; white sage and wild mint body oil; white and black sage room-clearing mist; sage cleansing bath salts; chaparral fragrant mist (distilled from a variety of coastal chaparral plants); California cooking spice blend; white and hummingbird sage body wash; white sage and wild mint solstice candle, or white sage, wild mint and hummingbird sage digestive elixir.

As a reminder the KRA boxes are made using wildcrafted ingredients. In an effort to support plant sustainability in harvesting, only limited number of boxes are available each month. As of this writing, a handful of June boxes remain available for purchase, so take advantage of the opportunity if the June box appeals to you.

If you would like to see my most recent listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box Unboxing – April 2015

I took advantage of the Spring Solstice sale at Kings Road Apothecary last month and signed up for a multi-month subscription to the “Surprise Box.” Each monthly box features four herbally-based, small-batch, handcrafted items that center around a theme. The April theme was “Citrus and Blossoms.” As of this writing there are a handful of this month’s boxes still available for purchase. Box pricing increases starting with the May box to $53.50 plus shipping when ordered individually, but multi-month subscriptions will still include shipping. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

I have a complete unboxing video here, but if you want to skip right to the photos and the nitty gritty, keep scrolling down.

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box April 2015 "Citrus and Blossoms"

The box came with all items individually wrapped in coordinated tissue paper and tied with kitchen twine. In addition to the individual items, the box also came with a cheery citrus and blossoms artistic rendering, a recipe for an orange blossom syrup, and a letter describing the box contents.

KRA Subscription box April 2015-bitters and tea

The four items included a 1 oz. dropper bottle of citrus and orange blossom bitters ($15.00) and a 1 oz. bag of orange blossom and oolong chai loose tea (value estimated at $5.00). The bitters had a fresh and sour citrus flavor, like a fresh grapefruit and are designed to get the digestive juices flowing before a meal to aid in digestion. They can also be used to make cocktails that call for using bitters.

KRA subscription box April 2015-bath fizz and body oil

The other two items included a 4 oz. jar of orange blossom and grapefruit bath fizz (value $10.00) and a 1 oz. bottle of orange blossom and elderflower body oil (value $13.00). I have yet to try the bath fizz, but the body oil had a wonderful silky feel on the skin and a very delicate floral scent that definitely evoked orange blossoms.

Overall, I am happy with this box. By using the spring solstice coupon, my individual box price was brought down to $47.38 each including shipping. The value is not as high as with many other more mainstream beauty boxes, but I think of myself as less of a consumer and more of a supporter when I purchase these boxes. I like that I am supporting a small, woman-owned business as well as the craft of herbalism. I love the curation of the box and the care that goes into the packaging and to each overall theme. I see added value from the KRA newsletter which discusses the box theme throughout the month and links to additional resources and recipes. Lastly, because the items are made seasonally and in small batches, sometimes the items included are entirely exclusive to the box recipients, and many of the ingredients used are fairly esoteric and not often seen in mainstream products (e.g., ocotillo).

The theme for the May box is “Ocotillo and Wild Rose” and will include four items. The current brainstorm list for products to feature includes ocotillo blossom and wild rose body cream; rose and hawthorn bath bomb; ocotillo blossom, wild rose and cardamom body oil; ocotillo, hawthorn and wild rose incense; wild rose, rose quartz and ocotillo blossom heart elixir; ocotillo, wild rose and devil’s club deep roots elixir; rose facial elixir; rose petal shimmering body dust; and rose, ocotillo blossom and hawthorn berry shrub.

If you would like to see my most recent listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Kings Road Apothecary Subscription Box Unboxing – February 2015

Well, it only took me seven years to do it but I have added another video to the CrunchyParent YouTube channel. I have been so excited to see that there have been over 325,000 combined viewings of my three other videos on wet felting with wool to date (if you haven’t seen them yet, go check them out!). I look forward to adding more crafting videos in the future, but right now the majority of my craft supplies are in storage as we are between houses, staying with family while we look for our next home. Until I am reunited with my wool, yarn, and other crafty goodies, I hope that you will enjoy this and other video demonstrations, tutorials, and reviews that I hope to feature very soon.

I mentioned the amazing lymphatic massage oil that I received in the Kings Road Apothecary February Surprise Box (with a lymphatic theme) in my last post, so I thought that you might enjoy seeing what else came with it. This box is currently sold out, but the March (Salt and Water) and April (Citrus and Blossom) boxes are still available here. I purchased the February box and was not compensated in any way for my review. All opinions are my own. To see my other Kings Road Apothecary unboxing and reviews from prior months, look here.

If you would like to see my most recent listing of “crunchy-friendly” subscription boxes, you can find that here. To see other crunchy subscription box video unboxings, look here on the Crunchy Parent You Tube channel. If you have any suggestions or requests for future videos, please let me know in the comments, and be sure to subscribe!

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
1 2