Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Check it Out: The #ReviveVoxBox

It's that time again to find out what I've received in my latest Vox Box from Influenster. All these products are meant to revive me in some way (hence the name), and they seem to be working! Here's the rundown.

Vitamin Shoppe Protein Powders


I've never seen the appeal of just mixing protein powders in water. They may taste good, but the consistency is always lacking. That's why you don't have to just put water in them. I tried them with almond milk and cashew milk which made these flavors taste really great. And you don't have to stop there--adding fruits and blending it all together makes for a great smoothie.

Brew and Renew Coffees


When K-Cup coffee brewers first came out, I really wanted one. Then I realized that I couldn't use my favorite coffee with it and didn't want to spend a bunch of money trying to find the right flavor. Years have gone by and I switched from being unsure about the cost to completely sure about not wanting to add to landfills with all the waste that K-Cup packaging makes. That's why these Brew and Renew flavors are awesome: the pods work n K-Cup brewers but are made of a compostable material that won't add to the filth we humans try to dispose of every single day. Here's a breakdown of the flavors I received:

Hills Bros.

A classic flavor that I've enjoyed for the past few years.  Hills Bros, is always my go-to brand because I know that it's going to provide the flavor I love and the caffeine I need.

Kauai Coffee Co.

If you've ever had the dream of being in Hawaii, this is the perfect pairing to sway to the tropical breeze. This is another medium roast that hits the spot: great if you like plain black coffee, but even better if you like to dress it up with milk, cream or sugar.

Chock Full o'Nuts

Funny, I was under the impression that Midtown Manhattan would taste like sweltering concrete and broken dreams. Just kidding! This variety of coffee is a smooth and flavorful, which if you close your eyes can take you from your dull surroundings to comfy seat on a fire escape overlooking Broadway, enjoying a piping hot cup o' joe. 

SheaMoisture Fruit Fusion Coconut Water Weightless Shampoo and Crème Rinse

I'm a sucker for a good shampoo and conditioner--especially one that doesn't weigh down my hair after a shower. She Moisture is a brand I've known about for a little while (and have tried their face masks, which are always fun to pamper yourself with), so I had no reservations trying out this shampoo.

Snackwell's Biscuit Thins


A few months ago I bought a box of breakfast biscuits on a whim (different brand) and thought that the product was a good idea. Crunchy, flavorful, multiple pieces so I don't feel like I'm wolfing it down in one bite. I stuck with that first brand that I bought, but this Vox box changed my mind. The Snackwell's Biscuit Thins that arrived were by far the best tasting biscuits I've tried (and it comes with four in a pack, not three like the competitor). I tried French Vanilla latte, and although it doesn't taste like my morning latte per se, it does have a rich, coffee-filled flavor. and to think, just a few years ago I avoided anything remotely flavored liked coffee! I like it so much I've already bought another box to enjoy in the mornings.

Well, that's it! Have you tried any of these products? I'd love to hear what you think!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Love Your Nails? That's #SoCutex

I don't know about you, but the one thing that I dread when I put on nail polish is having to take it off. What a hassle! You have to get out the bottle of remover, try not to spill it everywhere, and use up a ton of cotton balls to get the job done. No, thanks. But then again, who wants to have to go around with chipped nail polish until it wears off on its own? That's why I'm absolutely LOVING Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish Remover Pads.

Received this product free from Influenster for testing purposes. Thanks Influenster and Cutex!

This takes the hassle out of trying to remove your nail polish by having a pre-loaded pad with the remover already on it (which is GREAT for taking along with you on your summer travels!). A few swipes and you're done! One pad takes care of all ten fingers and all ten toes, so it makes the process really quick and convenient. The pads also contains ingredients such as Black Currant, Flaxseed, and Apricot Kernel botanical oils that help to nourish your nails and keep them healthy. 

Since it's good for my nails and quick to use, I've been changing up my look on a weekly basis. Have you tried these nail polish remover pads yet? What did you think?

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

It's Time to #WearWhatYouWant

Ladies, you know what I'm talking about. It's ninety degrees outside, the sun is shining, you've got your perfect pair of shades on, a fitted tank and your favorite white shorts. Yep, I said white shorts. That's when you lean over and whisper, "I can't. It's that time of the month." And then you realize that you CAN wear those white shorts--as long as you have Always Radiant Infinity to keep you protected.

I was able to try Always Radiant with FlexFoam complimentary from Influenster. And I can tell you, these are some of the best period protection products out there. The foam core of the pad absorbs 10 times its weight which gives you the ultimate protect for up to eight hours. These pads are also thin and flexible, giving you the feeling that you're wearing nothing at all. And let's be honest--packaging usually doesn't mean anything when you are talking about a great product, but with something like pads and tampons that you have to carry around with you, cute packaging is just the icing on your metaphorical cake. And this packaging takes the cake.

So come on, Ladies. With Always at your side, there's no reason you can't wear what you want, all day, every day. With all that confidence, what will YOU be wearing?

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Getting a Better Night's Sleep

Looking good, feeling good and doing your best at work each day--we all know that story. And we all know that having all three of those things coincide is practically a miracle! One of the ways that feeling your best is accomplished is by getting the right amount of sleep each night. For most adults, that's six to eight hours. How many of you are getting that kind of sleep? I know that I'm not (especially during Camp NaNoWriMo!).

This ZzzQuil sample was provided by Influenster free for testing purposes.

So what can you do if you aren't able to get to sleep when you need to? A sleep aid can be just what you need for those occasions where sleep just won't come. And I know what you're thinking--I don't want to take sleeping pills. Those could be dangerous! Well, we're not talking about the prescriptions that come from a doctor. What we're talking about here is a product like ZzzQuil--a safe, over-the-counter, non-habit forming product that can be used for occasional sleeplessness.

I've taken it on one or two of those restless evenings, and I can tell you that it works just like it's supposed to. It lets you get to sleep without any of the groggy side effects the next morning. So you'll be ready to go and accomplish life like a boss--or at least get your morning coffee order right. :-)

Monday, May 30, 2016

Exploring the #BloomVoxBox from Influenster

It's tie to explore another great VoxBox I received free from Influenster (for testing purposes). This one is the bloom VoxBox and in contained a whole lot of fun for spring. Check it out:

Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish Remover Pads
I will admit that I'm not really one for removing nail polish. It flakes off in a week (on my hands, at least) so I never get around to cleaning it off with any type of remover. However, these nail polish remove pads are super easy to to use and the best part--totally portable. I could see me taking these on a road trip this summer.

Sinful Colors Nail Polish

Oh, I've had a love affair with many a nail polish in the past, but this one by far works the best (if combined with the Sinful Colors top coat). Not only does it last, but the scent of the wet polish goes away very quickly. I received a bottle in the color VIP (basically bubblegum pink). Not really my color, but the product itself works great. 

Not Your Mother's Plump for Joy
I've heard nothing but good things about this brand, but this was my first chance to try it. With summer and humidity just around the corner, this is the solution I need when my hair looks limp and flat. Just a quick application and you can give your hair a little oomph.

NUXE Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Purpose Dry Oil

Long name, but a good product. This dry oil can be used for your skin and hair, so it's pretty much a go-to product for staying soft and glossy. Although the product works really well, I am not a huge fan of the scent. I would still use it though because it does a great job.

Secret Outlast Xtend Invisible Solid
I change deodorants as often as I change my mind, so trying another new product from Secret was bound to happen. I've noticed that Secret is the most prominent brand in my rotation because they had subtle scents and keep sweat at bay. This one works for 48 hours and keeps you dry and doesn't get all over your clothes.

Sunbelt Bakery Granola Bars

You don't have to sell me on these, Influenster--I've been in love with Sunbelt Bakery granola bars for a few years now. The honey and oats is a perfect addition to my morning coffee or a great afternoon snack. I haven't tried all of the flavors yet, but I know I will. I'm just that adventurous. ;-)

Have you tried any of these products yet? Let me know by leaving a comment!

PS: You know you could have a chance to get awesome products like these to try for yourself. Just go and sign up at Influenster today!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Exploring April's @PinchMe Box

If you're into trying out new products as much as I am, then you probably already know about the site PinchMe. If You don't, it's not quite like other free product sites. This site gives away a variety of free samples once a month to those who show up promptly at noon on the specified day to claim them. After a six month slump with my demographic not fitting the sample offerings, I've been having a lot of luck lately getting some good samples. Here is what I received in my April PinchMe box:

Garnier Clearly Brighter Brightening & Smoothing Daily Moisturizer
Yep, I've already tried this product out through another website's sampling and I know that I love it.  You can read more about my experience in taking the Clearly Brighter Challenge (Post #1 and Post #2).

Garnier Whole Blends Honey Treasures Shampoo and Conditioner

Again, this is a product I'm already familiar with, though this is my first time writing about it on the blog. The Whole Blends line uses natural ingredients (with a very low level of sulfates compared to other shampoo brands) to help quench, smooth and restore your hair. The Honey Treasures variety works specifically to strengthen and heal damaged hair. Plus, it smells awesome. I can also recommend the Coconut Oil and Cocoa Butter and Coconut Water and Vanilla Milk varieties too. Garnier also has three other varieties that I have yet to try, but with cranberry, avocado, apple and green tea in the names, I pretty sure those are going to smell awesome and work hard to restore your hair as well.

ZzzQuil Sleep Aid
I received this sample last month two months ago as well. I haven't used this one yet, but I did use the first one when I thought I would need it. I was worried about using this type of product at first until I realized the active ingredient was the same thing as you get in antihistamine products like Benadryl--and in the same dose. And who hasn't enjoyed a comfortable Benadryl nap before? Works well as long as you have about 20 minutes to wind down first.

Skinny Pop Jalepeno Popcorn

Bagged popcorn can be hit and miss sometimes. Skinny Pop apparently knows how to do it right. It tasted fresh and the jalepeno flavor wasn't super spicy (if you already like spicy flavors). I would definitely look for this in stores--along with the dusted chocolate, which I did not get a sample of, but have her from other Pinchers that it's a good one too.

Sunology Natural Sunscreen

I like the idea of a natural sunscreen, so this seems to be the perfect product for me. I put it on when the last sunny day came around and it protected my skin well (at 50 SPF). I think it would do fine on a bright, sunny day when I'm outside for a few hours.

Eucerin In-Shower Moisturizer

I've heard about these in-shower products for months now, but this is my first time using one. I like how clear the directions were (there are steps to the process) and that it did a good job moisturizing my skin. It did seem to add a few minutes to my morning routine, however, I'm not a person who usually needs to get going in a hurry to get to a 9-to-5. So, I think I would look into using this product again when I need it. 

Shea Moisture Sensitive Skin Mud Mask

I think that this mask is going to be great for my skin. I can't tell you how well though because it's on my face right now. Check my Instagram account in the next day or two for an update!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Clearly Brighter Challenge: The Results

As I told you last week, I took Garnier's Clearly Bright Challenge to see if their Clearly Brighter Brightening & Smoothing Daily Moisturizer would show results in just one week. And you know what? It did!

At first I wasn't thinking this was anything other than a regular moisturizer, but I do have to say that the tone and brightness of my skin did look better after just one week. It's not a huge change, but with only a week, it is significant enough to know that I'll continue to use this product.

Did you take the Clearly Bright Challenge? What were your results?

Monday, April 4, 2016

My Sample Mission: Garnier Clearly Brighter Brightening & Smoothing Daily Moisturizer

What does your daily face care routine look like? Does it include a moisturizer? I only started using facial moisturizer within the past year, but I know how big a difference it makes in the look and feel of my skin. And if you want to keep your face soft, smooth and bright, you may want to check out a new product from Garnier: Garnier Clearly Brighter Brightening & Smoothing Daily Moisturizer.

I was able to try this through a free sampling from Crowdtap. I can tell you that I loved it right from the start. First, it has a broad spectrum SPF 15 that provides you with protection from the sun. It also includes those skin-loving ingredients such as vitamin C and LHA. It is also an oil-free product, which mean those with oily or combination skin can use this without worry.

The scent is what I love the most. It is not strong and it is not coconut (which I really get tired of in the summer). The best way I can describe it is that it smells like face wash products that I have used in the past.

It supposed to help the tone and texture of my skin--who wouldn't want that? That is why I've taken on the Clearly Brighter Challenge. I'm going to use it for one week and I'll be posting next week with the results. Are you ready to take the Clearly Brighter Challenge?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

My January Look: Showered in Comfort

January in the Midwest is cold. And snowy. Add a few gusts of wind, and you've got a miserable combination of weather. But that doesn't mean you have to put on stretched out, bulky sweaters and ratty socks to stay warm (although, if this is your favorite lounge wear, go for it!). Here are some of the things that I'm going to be wearing and using during January to keep my spirits up, even in the face of an unrelenting winter.

January Style

A Comfy Shirt
I received this exact Old Navy shirt for Christmas. This is one of the most comfortable shirts I've owned in a long time. I like that it is made from soft materials and the quilting adds a little bit of wintery accent to it. 

Sturdy Jeans
If you're like me and don't park your car in a garage, you need a good, sturdy pair of jeans to wear while cleaning off all the snow and ice before you leave for the day. And as all the fashion experts will tell you, dark washes make you look like your best self.

Bold Lips
For my makeup, I tend to go darker and bolder in the winter months. This Rimmel lipstick is my go-to when I want to make a statement. I'm also dying to check out darker colors like maroons and dark berries.

Great Boots
Boots are a must in the colder months, but as many of you in snowy areas know, great fashion boots don't always make great snow boots. So these are for walking around the inside, paired with leggings and a long sweater.

Statement Bag
Winter white and furry? Yes please! This bag looks amazing. I'm going to need to find one of these to go with my winter style.

Yes. Notebooks are a MUST for a writer. I don't leave home without a working pen (don't you hate it when you find out that the ink is all dry?!) and some type of notebook to jot down all of my inspirations.

What does you January style look like?

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Oh Sugar! Let's Explore the #COVERGIRL VoxBox

It's that time again -- another VoxBox arrived in my mailbox just before Christmas. And what a gift it was! I am a total CoverGirl fan--about 85% of the makeup in my life is CoverGirl, so getting this box was really a dream come true! I was able to try two new CoverGirl products for 2016:

Let's take a closer look:

*Received these products free from Influenster for testing.*

Plumpify Mascara by blastPRO

My daily go-to mascara is CoverGirl's Lash Blast Length (for those who know just how many CG mascaras are out there but don't know the specific names, it's the yellow tube). So when I was picked to try CoverGirl's new Plumpify by blastPro, I was looking to see if this would replace my current daily mascara, or whether it would be better for specific situations.

The wand is spiky (both fins and cones) and twisted, so I wasn't sure how it would work at first. Once I got some product on it, I saw that it combed through my lashes with ease. It covers fully, and with a little wiggle, you can get a thick coat on every lash. This has a little more of a dramatic effect than my go-to mascara, so I would use this mascara when I really want to accentuate my eyes.

Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Vitamin Infused Lip Balm


I also received in my box the CoverGirl's Oh Sugar! Vitamin Infused Lip Balm. This is a tinted balm that goes on smoothly and comes in a variety of sweet-themed colors such as Caramel, Soda, Sprinkles and more. I received the Caramel color. At first I thought it might not work well since it is more brown than pink or red in tint, but once I put it on, it looked great. Just enough color to brighten my lips without having a bold look.

While it might be too sheer for some, this is the perfect intensity for me when I want to have a very natural daily look. Often I only want to use a bold lip on special occasions, so Oh Sugar! is great for daily use. It also has a sweet scent, kind of like sugary lip gloss flavors, so I love it even more (because the chemical scent of bold lipstick pigments are not my favorite thing).

truNAKED Eyeshadow Palette

CoverGirl has a third new product for 2016 which is the truNAKED Eyeshadow Palette. Although I didn't receive this product in my box, I've only heard great things about it from my fellow Influenster members. 

Overall, this box was a total success for me. I'm quickly becoming much more of a makeup connoisseur than I ever was, so I hope Influenster keeps me in mind for future boxes filled with beauty products!