Wednesday, July 26, 2017

July 2017 Ipsy Glam Bag Review - It's Gudetama!

What: Ipsy Glam Bag contains 5 deluxe samples and full sized beauty products in an exclusive makeup bag.
When: Glam Bags ship monthly on the 10th
Cost: $10/month (free shipping within the US)
Fun Extra: You can review your products each month to earn ipsyPoints which can be redeemed for bonus items.

You know it's going to be a fun month of Ipsy when the bubble mailer is so stuffed that there's packing tape holding it closed. In fact the bagspill photo above is even missing one of the items because I didn't notice it all scrunched up on the bottom of the mailer until later.


I'm sooo happy that Ipsy finally decided to team up with Sanrio. I'm even happier that they're featuring everyone's favorite lazy egg, Gudetama. Sanrio is one of those brands that you never grow out of because we all love cute stuff regardless of age, yes? And if anyone can make something cute, Sanrio can. I mean they somehow pulled off making a sunny side up egg look so adorable!


Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer in Park Ave Princess (0.11oz, $10) - I get that it's summer and the season's all about achieving that sunkissed glow, but right now I have bronzer coming out of my ears. However, I don't think I own one with shimmer. It's on the subtle side so you can go light or build up to an intense glow depending on the occasion.

Bella Pierre Cosmetics Banana Setting Powder - My first thought was "Omg, a powder made out of bananas?! Noms!" and then I realized how silly that sounds. No bananas here; the powder gets its name from its yellow tone, though I think it looks more peach to me. Either way, peach and yellow colors target purple shadows like those undereye circles you get when your dog keeps shoving you off the bed all night and you don't get a single wink of sleep. -_- You can use this as a powder concealer or even as an eyeshadow base.
Bella Pierre Banana Setting Powder

Pacifica Island Life Eyeshadow Palette - Ipsy first introduced me to this brand and it's grown to become one of my favorites. Their formulas are so creamy and subtle yet buildable and is exactly what I look for in an eyeshadow. And bonus: this palette is an Ipsy exclusive!

Swatches of the Pacifica Island Life palette (L-R: skinny dip, coral sand, golden, treasure, sandalwood).

Tonymoly I'm Real Lotus Sheet Mask and Green Tea Sheet Mask - One of these masks was smooshed waay down on the bottom of the bubble mailer and went unnoticed until I was just about to throw it away. *whew* good thing I did one last check. :) I love Tonymoly's cutesy product packaging and am pretty sure I act like a total kid in a candy store when I visit the Tonymoly shop in town. These sheet masks come from the I'm Real mask collection featuring all kinds of ingredients: avocado (nutrition), broccoli (vitality), lemon (brightening), tomato (radiance), and way more. The lotus variety pictured above illuminates and the green tea mask purifies skin.

Eau Thermale Avene Cleanance MAT Mattifying Toner - Yay, a toner made for oily skin! These last few months have been especially horrible to my already-oily skin and on any given day my face looks like an 8th grader just hitting puberty. This toner contains monolaurin to fight off oil-producing microbes and mattify your complexion (i.e. zaps the shine) so it's a good one to use before applying makeup. Heads up, though, it also has alcohol in it so make sure you use a moisturizer afterwards to prevent over-drying and subsequent amped-up oil production.


Also included was a mini mag announcing Ipsy's brand new Ipsy Cash program in which you earn cash back for buying your favorite cosmetics through the Ipsy website. You can opt to receive your "free" money in the form of a check or a Paypal deposit.

Verdict: Is it odd that my favorite thing in here is the makeup bag? I mean it was actually a pretty good haul this month, but I just really like Gudetama. It's not even going to be used to hold makeup; I just found a whole bunch of gel pens in my old desk drawer at my parents' house so those are going straight in the Ipsy bag. Coming in a close second is the eye shadow palette. I don't even know why I keep collecting them. I have so many even though I hardly wear makeup, but they're so pretty! And then there's the toner. I'm so ready to get rid of greasy-face Sheri. I'm also kind of interested in the Ipsy Cash program. I took a quick glance at what's available and there's a lot of stuff to choose from. The deals are pretty good, too - you get 20% cash back on most brands but it goes as high as 30%.

Sign up here to get started with Ipsy for just $10 per month. You'll get five items inside a fun makeup bag along with access to tons of online coupons for more goodies from the month's featured brands right from your account. And don't forget access to Ipsy Cash as well! 

Note: This post contains referral links. All opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Summer 2017 Walmart Beauty Box Review

    What: Walmart Beauty Box contains samples of beauty products from major drugstore brands. Multiple versions are available for different age groups - this review is for the Trendsetter box.
When: Ships once a season (March, June, September, and December)
Cost: The box itself is free, but there is a $5 flat shipping fee

Is it just me or is the year really flying by? It feels like only a few weeks ago that I received my spring Me Moment box in the mail. To be honest, I still haven't touched anything in that box because I'm still making my way through everything else I've accumulated over the months years. And then all of a sudden summer's box shows up! I should note that I do like these reusable boxes that Walmart has been sending lately. Their shipping boxes have always been on the sturdier side, but this is an actual box with a cover and minimal design so I can use it to neatly stash all my extras (*ahem* the tons of shampoos and lotion samples I've been getting) without it being an eyesore.

Speaking of shampoos...


Pantene Pro-V Daily Moisture Renewal Dream Care Shampoo & Conditioner - Pantene was the first shampoo/conditioner I picked out for myself growing up (I felt so independent and adult-like!) and I stuck with it all the way until I graduated from high school. I haven't used it since and it'll be nice to take a stroll down memory lane after all these years. This duo smells sooo good (but I find myself saying that for almost every shampoo and conditioner I come across). It's formulated to strengthen hair and lock in moisture to provide intense hydration to every strand.

Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes - You can never have too many wipes! I keep a pack in my purse, one at work, and I even stash one in my truck for dog park days and use them to wipe my dogs' feet before they jump inside. They're gentle enough so they don't irritate Macho's paw pads (or my face) yet effective in getting off the dirt. 

Schwarzkopf Got2b Ultra Glued Invincible Styling Gel - I don't really know much about anything when it comes to hair gel except that it's goopy and sticky based on the last time I tried using one over 20 years ago. I'm sure gels have come a long way since then, and apparently they're no longer sticky or flaky, as this one claims. Oh, I have much to learn.

imPress Press-On One-Step Gel Manicure in Climb Higher - I can't find this nautical design on Walmart's website, but there are similar ones on there that I want to get my hands on, like now. These are adhesive press-on nails that can fool people into thinking you just spent $50 on a pretty gel mani. They're also supposedly waterproof so you shouldn't be losing nails one by one each time you take a shower. I'm kind of curious to test this claim because the last time I used press-on nails (with a glue) they started falling off after three days and I'm pretty sure my husband was traumatized when he glanced at my hand and saw some fingernails missing :O

Ecotools Mask Remover Sponges - Am I so far removed from the beauty scene that I didn't know people use sponges to remove masks? All this time I've just been splashing water on my face to wash it off. These reusable sponges are made with wood pulp to cleanly remove facial masks while exfoliating your skin.

And finally, the obligatory foil samples. I was actually curious to try out the makeup brush cleaner to see how it compares to soap and water. Annnd I'd still choose soap and water. The whole mixing gel and water for each brush thing was just too labor intensive and I didn't think it cleaned my brushes as well as soap and water does anyway.

Verdict: If it weren't for the adhesive nails then this box would be a bust value-wise. Aside from the shampoo/conditioner and facial wipes, I won't be getting much use out of anything in here, but I will be heading to Walmart to see what other mani designs they have so I guess I could count that as a win. It wasn't nearly as impressive as the Me Moment box, though. I guess I'll wait and see what fall will bring!

You can subscribe to Walmart Beauty Box by clicking here. The fall boxes start shipping in September, so sign up soon to get your name in on time!

Note: All opinions contained within this post are my own. Post does not contain any referral links.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

July 2017 Stickii Club Cute Sticker Pack Review

 
 What: Stickii Club is a sticker subscription that sends an envelope full of Cute, Retro or Pop themed stickers every month (you choose which category when you sign up). This review is for the Cute pack.
When: Ships on the 11th or 22nd of each month depending on your signup date
Cost: $10 per month (free shipping to US; $1.25 to Canada, $2.00 to anywhere else)

It's July and that means BBQs and potlucks galore! Whoever said not to play with your food had no idea about kawaii food, which happens to be this month's Stickii Club theme for the cute sticker packs. In case you didn't know, kawaii literally translates to "cute" in Japanese. If you stick a face on pretty much any inanimate object you instantly make it kawaii, so it makes sense that Stickii sends kawaii stickers practically every month in their cute packs. This is definitely not the first time they've sent kawaii food stickers which could only mean that people love 'em (I know I do). 

First up are two sticker sheets that appear to be from the same artist. I don't know about you, but I love musubis and I'm going to have a hard time eating them without picturing a tiny little face on them every time I take a bite from now on...

Now these are classic kawaii food stickers over on the left. They've got the sparkly eyes and everything. Seriously, how can you look at that peach and frown? On the right side are Rilakkuma stickers. I'm not sure what they're doing in a food pack but he's grown on me over the past few months and will make a nice complement to my growing Rilakkuma washi tape collection.


It's nighttime now, but if you showed mose the watercolor popsicle stickers five hours ago when it was super sunny and hot outside, I probably would have tried eating them. No joke. And then there's those doughnuts. I just ate a birthday cake one he other day (it was DELICIOUS) so these puffy doughnut stickers are making my mouth water right now. Add that to my giggles from seeing the doggy stuck in one and I'm a drooling hot mess at the moment.

If you were to take a peek inside my Stickii Club sticker collection you would see that I organize them by category (because yes, I've accumulated quite the bunch since subscribing), and Food is by far the largest one. There's something about kawaii and food that go perfectly well together. Perfect example: Shopkins. The kids love them and parents have to secretly admit that they're kind of adorable.

If you like the cuteness but not the fact that Shopkins takes up so much precious space, click here to sign up for Stickii (which can be conveniently stored in a binder!) in time for next month's sticker pack. Choose from Cute, Retro or Pop packs, each for $10/month.


Note: No referral links were used in this post. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

June 2017 Ipsy Glam Bag Review

What: Ipsy Glam Bag contains 5 deluxe samples and full sized beauty products in an exclusive makeup bag.
When: Glam Bags ship monthly on the 10th
Cost: $10/month (free shipping within the US)
Fun Extra: You can review your products each month to earn ipsyPoints which can be redeemed for bonus items.


After May's spectacular glam bag, I had high expectations for June. Summer's in full swing and that means anything bright and bold is in, evidenced by June's "Volume Up" theme. That's a good thing because I've been (sort of) trying to get out of my comfort zone when it comes to clothes and makeup. Time to see what June's got in store!

Trust Fund Beauty Nail Polish in Game Changer (full size, 17ml, $15) - Talk about getting out of my comfort zone! This is a fluorescent coral that will surely catch the eye of any passersby. And that's perfect because my skin has been hating me lately and I've had nothing but breakout after breakout. I could definitely use something to distract from people staring at my blemish-y face. The photo doesn't do it justice - it dulls the color considerably. Do you remember those fluorescent crayons that we were crazy about in elementary school? Do you remember ultra orange? That's what it looks like.

theBalm Cosmetics Balm Springs Blush (0.8g, $3) - theBalm makes such pretty makeup and I'm almost never disappointed in how they look on my skin, but the samples are so tiny my brush can barely pick anything up. Size gripes aside, this is a lovely rose shade that will complement any skin tone. I usually have an issue with blushes being too pink, but this one's got some peach tones in there so it will do just fine with my warm skin tone.

Luna by Luna Eye Shadow in Jace (full size, 1.5g, $15) - If you want something to match the rose blush above, brush on some of this matte dusty rose eye shadow. It's a bit more peach than it looks in the photo above, but it's perfectly office-appropriate and will make a fantastic base for bolder colors when you go out for some drinks after work.

NYX Cosmetics Whipped Lip & Cheek Souffle in Plush (full size, 8ml, $6) - Summer's scorching hot and the last thing I want is heavy makeup that melts off my face. It's a good thing there's this lightweight mousse that doubles as a blush and lip color. And Plush is a nice neutral nude pink that can be used with an everyday look because I need something that I can use in this swealtering everyday heat.

BioRepublic Skincare Aloe Rescue & Green Tea Detox Fiber Sheet Masks ($5 each) - With all that sun exposure during that day your skin is probably screaming for some TLC. The Aloe Rescue mask contains loads of aloe vera juice which is perfect for soothing sun-damaged skin while the Green Tea Detox mask has tons of after-sun-friendly ingredients like green tea extract and vitamin E. Bonus: these masks are biodegradable, too.

Verdict: Maybe it was influenced by past bag reviews in my account, but for a bold summer Volume Up theme I expected a bit more, um, boldness in terms of color. While I do like the colors I got (lots of nudes) it keeps me in my comfort zone. The only crazy thing I got was the electric orange nail polish. But as far as product variation, it was a good spread; now I've got new things for eyes, lips, cheeks, nails, and some after-sun skin rescue.

Itching to try Ipsy? It's just $10 a month and you can sign up by clicking here. Each month you'll get five items inside a cute makeup bag and you'll have access to tons of online coupons for more goodies from the month's featured brands right from your account.

Note: This post contains referral links. All opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

June 2017 Stickii Club Cute Sticker Pack Review


 What: Stickii Club is a sticker subscription that sends an envelope full of Cute, Retro or Pop themed stickers every month (you choose which category when you sign up). This review is for the Cute pack.
When: Ships on the 11th or 22nd of each month depending on your signup date
Cost: $10 per month (free shipping to US; $1.25 to Canada, $2.00 to anywhere else)

Summer means sun, surf and sea. Creatures, that is. June's cute sticker pack theme is Sea Life, and this envelope was overflowing with it. Each sticker pack usually contains seven full-sized sticker sheets along with some sticker flakes so chances are you'll collect them faster than you can use them. That's my problem, anyway. They're so darn cute that I want to just stare at it and not use it.

Each month there's normally a fun extra thrown in. Past extras included bookmarks, wash tape and sticky notes, but more often it's a big sticker like it is this time around. A big octopus sticker. Octopuses (octopi?) are one of those animals that I think look so funny in real life but so freakin' adorable in cartoon form. Especially when they're anatomically incorrect like this guy and his duckface lips. Also, THOSE SEALS. I love cartoon seals. If and when I ever get a pet seal I'm gonna make a cartoon out of him.

More sea life, including some polar bear and penguin action. They do dive in the water so I guess that classifies them as sea life as well. Gah, don't you just love all the color here?!

What would a sea creature sticker pack be without whales? These are probably the cutest whales I've seen in my life. And remember what I said earlier about an extra thrown in? In addition to the octopus sticker, this month subscribers also got a sea creature paper clip! It'll be perfect for attaching my shopping list to my planner. Then there are those sharks; I've never seen them look so friendly. I've been hearing about so many shark attacks on the local news lately, it helps to look at these cuties and escape from reality for a bit.



If I had a penny for every sticker that I owned, I could probably afford a new car by now. Oh, how I wish you could exchange stickers for cash. Okay maybe not, because I'd have just as hard a time parting with all the cuteness, which explains why I have hoards of stickers to begin with. But seriously, I have way more than I could ever use. It's kind of like stamp collecting, you keep growing your collection knowing very well that you could be using them BUT YOU DON'T. Because collectors collect. Thanks, Stickii Club, for reigniting my sticker collecting tendencies. You can become a sticker collector (or user) too. Choose from Cute, Retro or Pop packs, each for $10/month. Click here to get signed up and ready in time for next month's sticker pack.


Note: No referral links were used in this post. All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

June 2017 Pooch Perks Dog Box Review

School's out, its summer break, flights are booked - that can only mean one thing: VACATION TIME!!! For lots that vacation includes a trip to the beach. Snorkeling, scuba diving, catamaran cruises, however you're planning your ocean adventures you're sure to witness tons of sea life. And that's the inspiration behind June's Under the Sea themed box. Just in case your pup can't make it out to the ocean (or refuses to like mine), the nice people at Pooch Perks decided to bring the beach to your dog.


What: Pooch Perks is a subscription box for dogs containing 2-5 treats and toys. There are three subscription options: Sample Pooch (2 past items), Popular Pooch (4-5 toys & treats) and Custom Pooch (includes options for just treats, just toys, heavy chewer, or no grains). Boxes are also curated according to your dog's size.  If your dog has allergies you can also note that down when you sign up. 
If you signed up before February 2017, you're grandfathered into the previous subscription options. For reference, this review is for the older plan's Popular Pooch box (4-5 items) for a medium-large dog (35+ lbs).
When: Choose between monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly deliveries
Cost: $12-$32 per box depending on which subscription option you choose (+$5 shipping/box); ships anywhere in the US and US territories
Fun Fact: A portion of proceeds from each box goes to rescue groups. You can learn more about how Pooch Perks gives back here.


Bow Wow Pet Sea Creatures Starfish - I'm not sure how he did it, but Macho picked this out of the box, removed the tags, then started squeaking it like crazy. All while I had my back turned for 30 seconds to turn on my computer. HOW DID HE KNOW TO REMOVE THE TAGS!??? The tough nylon covering made it harder for the dogs to tear through but after 15 minutes they had torn through the seams and I started seeing white puffs blow across the carpet. *sigh*
PLAY???

Emerald Pet Little Chewzzies Salmon Treats - What would a sea-themed box be without fishy treats? Salmon is the first ingredient in these chewy noms, and that makes me happy because I'm trying to give Macho more fish in hopes that it'll help alleviate his skin issues. These are perfect for training since they have less than 5 calories per treat. Plus they're free of wheat, soy, corn, and dairy so doggies with sensitive tummies can enjoy them, too.

So Bright Grain Free Salmon Treats - More salmon! Last month we got the beef liver recipe from this brand and the dogs la-la-loved it. I don't think we've ever gotten salmon flavored biscuits before (it's always been chewy or freeze-dried treats), but I'm hoping these don't smell as bad as the meaty versions.

Bow Wow Pet Floppy Fish Toy - This toy is similar to the starfish - it's squeaky and huge. I'm still deciding if I want to give this to the dogs because it's a big fish which means a big mess to clean up once they de-stuff it. :(

One Fur All Pet House Mini Candle in Mediterranean Sea - I'm not sure if it was a mistake, but there were two candles in my box. But mistake or not, I could sure use twice the odor neutralizing power. I just bathed both dogs last week but I might as well have bathed them last month. I worry about what others smell when they come in our house, kind of like the noseblind mom in those Febreze commercials. Mediterranean Sea is a floral scent blended with citrus and a hint of musk. I'm more of a fruity scented candle person, but this one does smell clean and if it'll make my house smell better give me ten.

Verdict: I'm always impressed with how well Pooch Perks sticks to themes. Every item in this box has something to do with the sea, including an ocean-themed accessory. But I think I'm most happy about the salmon treats. They're both sourced in the US and are a huge hit with my fur munchkins (but then again everything is). I just renewed my subscription so that means another six months of happy dogs at home!

Click here to sign up for Pooch Perks. Don't forget to use the code FRIEND10 to get 10% off your subscription!


Note: This review reflects my (and perhaps more importantly my pups') honest opinions. No referral links were used in this post.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

May 2017 Daily Goodie Box Review


What: Daily Goodie Box sends a box of samples and full-sized items for you to test and review right from your account.  The more you review, the better your chances of scoring another box!
Cost: Free! Just submit reviews to improve your chance of getting more boxes.

Yup, no joke. Daily Goodie Box is completely free. No paying for shipping or locking yourself into some fine print that comes back to bite you in the butt. Sound too good to be true? Well there is a catch. You need to review the products. But that's it. Daily Goodie Box works with product manufacturers to bring you free stuff to try out and in return those companies get feedback on their products. But note that this is not a subscription service - anyone can sign up for an account, but Daily Goodie Box will contact you if/when they send a box your way to review. Once you get your box, have fun trying everything then login to your account and leave your thoughts on each of the products you received. Remember to leave quality reviews because it may qualify you for another box! 

I know I'm a little (okay a lot) late to the party, but here's what came in May's box:

Kicking Horse Coffee - Kick Ass Ground Coffee - It's times like these that I wish I was a coffee drinker (and/or had a coffee maker) because this one sounds so decadent. Plus, with a name like Kick Ass who wouldn't want to try it? The aroma is described as "smoky, sweet vanilla and dark chocolate," and the tasting notes are "chocolate malt, molasses, licorice and an earthy lingering finish." Doesn't it make your mouth water? But it's a dark coffee and my sweet tooth can't even handle medium roast. Yep, I'm that girl who always orders the frappuccino at Starbucks because I like a touch of coffee with my sugar. My girlfriend told me that I'm the gal she gets mad at for holding up the line and ordering fake coffee. Haha. Oops. Still wouldn't mind trying it though, if only I had a coffee maker...

Georgia Grinders Creamy Peanut Butter - With all the processed foods you see lately, sometimes it's nice to eat something simple with minimal ingredients. What's even nicer is if you can eat something simple without going through the trouble of making it yourself. Georgia Ginders is simple. They handcraft their peanut butters (and almond butters, and pecan and cashew butters) in small batches. Not only that but they never add any sugars or oils. It's just slow roasted nuts and some sea salt. Since they don't add the extra stuff, don't expect this to taste like Skippy. It's on the bland side but grew on me the more I ate. It's actually quite delicious. And then I ran out of club crackers. :( Note to self: buy bread today.


ONA Cookies in Peanut Butter - As it turns out these aren't your typical soft and chewy peanut butter cookies. These organic cookies have the soft, sticky-but-chewy texture of a protein bar instead of the chewy, crumbly cookie that we're all used to. There are 5g of protein per 2-cookie package and over 12g of fat. Fortunately, it isn't the empty-calorie kind of fat; the fat in here comes from nuts (mostly peanuts and coconuts) - they're healthy fats. Still, at 105 calories per cookie, I think these are meant to be snacked on one at a time, not the whole package in one crack. But they're so delicious that I ate the whole thing without thinking twice, but now that it's gone I'm realizing that these cookies are a bit filling and one would have sufficed had I chomped slowly. Oh well, 20/20 hindsight.
ONA cookies: delicious AND satisfying

Prince of Peace Ginger Candy - I'm typically not a fan of ginger-scented or -flavored anything. I don't mind it in cooking, but I could totally do without it, too. But for the sake of a fair review, I tried to do this from an objective point of view. What I do like about this candy is that it's coated in powdered sugar (remember my sweet tooth?). It's a welcomed distraction from the spiciness of the ginger. The texture is soft and chewy so it doesn't last long like a hard candy would. Unfortunately, it's not enough to completely change my view on ginger candy, but the initial sweetness earns it some points and I think I'll keep this around for those times when my stomach could use a little soothing. 

Natralia Eczema Body Wash & Shampoo - This unscented colloidal oatmeal-based body wash is intended for the management of flaky itchy, red, irritated skin associated with eczema. My husband is always looking for something that will clean yet will not irritate his skin. Anything with sodium lauryl sulfate leaves his skin itchy and dry, but without it he claims his skin still feels dirty. Instead of SLS this body wash contains cocamidopropyl betaine (CAPB), a coconut oil-derived surfactant (which ironically is reported to trigger allergic reactions in some). Whether this will work for you depends on how sensitive your skin is as well as the purity of CAPB in here. Hopefully the soothing effect of the oatmeal is enough to counteract any irritation this ingredient may cause. 


Volo Vitamins Energy Sticks in Berry and Citrus - I was a bit wary of trying this at first because my experience with powdered vitamins hasn't been the best. They usually end up tasting chalky or medicinal and don't resemble the labeled flavor at all. So I was pleasantly surprised when the Volo citrus actually tasted like citrus, no weird TheraFlu aftertaste. In fact, it was sweet (again, sweet tooth here). I haven't tried the berry flavor yet, but I have high expectations for it taste-wise. A single packet (only 5 calories!) is loaded with Vitamin C (600mg) and Vitamin B12 (2500ug) as well as a host of other vitamins and minerals. Each packet also contains a proprietary blend consisting of taurine and guarana seed extract w/ caffeine for energy, L-arginine for heart and circulatory health, and lots of other goodies for health maintenance.

Goviter Viter Energy Caffeine Mints - Not too much, not too little, but juuust right. That's how you'd describe Viter energy mints. Each mint contains 40 mg caffeine, or about the equivalent of half a cup of coffee. They also contain vitamin B complex which is responsible for converting food into energy and red blood cell production (more red blood cells = more hemoglobin = higher oxygen capacity = increased energy!)

Tiger Balm Pain Relieving Patch - Back when I was playing sports Tiger Balm was my best friend. When you're grappling five days a week you get your fair share of aches, pains, and tight muscles so you need something stronger than IcyHot for soothing relief. Tiger Balm was my answer. In fact, everybody on the team owned a jar of the stuff and you knew you were getting close to the practice room when you could smell Tiger Balm wafting out of the doors. It's been 15 years since those days but I'll never forget that medicinal scent that gets stuck in your nose. (I wonder how my parents put up with it all those years?) These patches have minimal odor and zero mess. Each patch contains menthol (24mg), camphor (80mg), and capsicum extract (16mg...yup, the stuff in peppers) to soothe and relieve pain. I don't have any sore muscles right now...thankfully...but the next time I do I'll be sure to see how this patch compares to the balm itself.

Andalou Naturals Beauty is Uplifting Face Cream - This is a very thick moisturizer that claims to give you a "more lifted, firmer, youthful appearance and a rejuvenated complexion" with the help of fruit stem cell complex, resveratrol, CoQ10, hyaluronic acid, and dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE). Although this cream is super thick, it absorbed into my skin almost instantly and left no greasy residue. I think it's supposed to be unscented but I thought it smelled like candy wrappers (maybe from the sample's plastic packaging?) Can't say whether this is "anti-aging" though. I'd need more time and sample to be able to tell.

Swago Cologne Wipes for Men in Smell Like A Gentleman - Cologne on the go! Swago eliminates the need for men to carry a bottle of cologne if they need to freshen up away from home for a night on the town (because seriously, what guy has room in their pockets for a bottle?) These fragrance wipes come in four manly scents: Legend, Gentlemen, VIP, and Champ. The Gentlemen variety is described as "the fragrance for the man who would be many men at once" with notes of wormwood, bergamot, cardamom, lavender, orange blossom, cinnamon, cumin, wood, musk, amber, vanilla, and tonka bean. Wow. That's a mouthful. I personally prefer the comforting scent of fresh laundry. Wipe a dryer sheet all over yourself and you're good to go. But that's just me. I can be a bit too simple sometimes.


This was my second Daily Goodie Box and in my opinion it was more impressive than the first. First off, A WHOLE BAG OF COFFEE. I may not be a coffee drinker but replace the word "coffee" with "hot chocolate" and I can see myself doing cartwheels across my living room so I can imagine the excitement of actual coffee drinkers. I also like that there was a nice mix of products in here. Some food, some drinks, some hygiene and therapy. My surprise favorite in here is the peanut butter. I thought it tasted rather bland at first but now I can't get enough. Plus I love that it contains minimal ingredients. And this packet is lasting surprisingly long. I don't put too much PB on my bread so I'm going on two weeks and still have some left. :D

If you're interested in product reviewing, sign up for a Daily Goodie Box here. They are shipped based on availability so you may not get one right away but sit tight and hopefully one will come your way soon. When you do receive it, don't forget to sign in to your account and leave your reviews so you can qualify for another box!

Note: I received these products for free in exchange for my honest opinion

Sunday, June 4, 2017

May 2017 Pooch Perks Dog Box Review

What: Pooch Perks is a subscription box for dogs containing 2-5 treats and toys. There are three subscription options: Sample Pooch (2 past items), Popular Pooch (4-5 toys & treats) and Custom Pooch (includes options for just treats, just toys, heavy chewer, or no grains). Boxes are also curated according to your dog's size.  If your dog has allergies you can also note that down when you sign up. 
If you signed up before February 2017, you're grandfathered into the previous subscription options. For reference, this review is for the older plan's Popular Pooch box (4-5 items) for a medium-large dog (35+ lbs).
When: Choose between monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly deliveries
Cost: $12-$32 per box depending on which subscription option you choose (+$5 shipping/box); ships anywhere in the US and US territories
Fun Fact: A portion of proceeds from each box goes to rescue groups. You can learn more about how Pooch Perks gives back here.

It's summer and you know what that means...grilling season! Over at our house my husband makes it a point to fire up the grill at least twice a month regardless of the time of year (thank goodness it doesn't get too cold in these parts), but now that summer's here I'm expecting that frequency to bump up to weekly. You know, because he likes to barbecue, not because I really really really love to eat steak...

He really does love to grill, though. And he usually lets the dogs out back while cooking so that means I get some peace and quiet in the house. *yay!* But what usually ends up happening is the dogs plop down next to him and wait for drippings or a stray piece of meat falling off the grill. Sometimes they get it, sometimes they don't. But thanks to Pooch Perks' Barks n' BBQ box this month, they can get a 100% BBQ win rate. :D

FouFit Freeze N' Float Plush Munchies Hamburger ($10 on sale for $8 right now!) - This looks like a plain ol' squeaky plush burger, but it's actually made of a quick-drying material which makes it perfect for playing fetch in the water on a hot day. Or if your dog is scared of the water like mine are, simply dunk the toy in water, squeeze out the excess and throw it in the freezer for an icy treat when it's a hundred degrees out.

Preen Pets Just Chicken Jerky (4oz bag, $7 on sale for $5) - This treat contains only one ingredient, 100% USDA chicken. No hormones, no preservatives, no fillers, just human consumption grade chicken oven-baked to perfection. I can't imagine it being very tasty (I guess that's why it also contains some chicken liver), but my dogs will eat leaves and cardboard by choice so I don't think they mind one bit.
Preen Pets Just Chicken oven-baked treats

Soft Flex Airball, 5" (small) (~$5) - One thing I really like about Pooch Perks is that they always include at least one durable toy each month. I didn't sign up for the heavy chewer option, but we've received a rubber toy in each box so far. This is a squeaky rubber toy designed to fly fast and far, kind of like those Nerf vortex balls. This would have been perfect for Macho because fetch is his favorite pastime ever, but a couple of months ago we noticed him having hind leg lameness and although his x-rays were clear the vet instructed us to cut out running and jumping until we figure out what it is. So no fetch for the Macho Man :(

Champion Life Eco-Friendly Poop Bags (60 count, $11) - I don't know about you, but I always welcome poop bags in my house. There was a time when I tried the frugal thing and reused produce bags, but sometimes your fruits can poke holes through the thin plastic without you knowing and ugh...the consequences. I needed something a little thicker and was willing to forgo my thrifty ways if it meant I wouldn't have to smell like poo for the rest of our walk. These bags are marketed as "extra strong" and at $0.18 per bag they better be. But the nice thing about these is that they're biodegradable so I can feel good about tossing their poop bags in the trash. Eventually all evidence of their business will be gone!

SO Bright Beef Liver Dog Treats (6oz, $4?) - These treats are pretty hard to come by! Stores that carry it are concentrated in the Wisconsin/Chicago area (they're made in WI) and online retailers are scarce. I guess I consider myself lucky to have these, then. :) SO Bright makes four types of treats: grain-free, oven-baked, freeze-dried, and soft and chewy in a variety of protein options. These all-natural grain-free treats contain minimal ingredients and real meat to make it a more friendly treat for allergy-prone dogs.

Verdict: As always, I'm impressed with the quality of treats in this box. We got two natural snacks that no doubt will be gone by the time the June box ships out. I'm almost afraid to use the poop bags because they're so gosh darn expensive (for POOP!) but those too will be gone in a couple of weeks. I didn't realize how much my dogs poop until I realized they went through an entire box of one thousand poop bags from Amazon in 6 months.(!!!) To my surprise, the toys seem to last longer around here nowadays, probably because Macho rather sleep during the day and Pebbles prefers to chew on Macho than on her toys. :-/ But all in all another great box!

Click here to sign up for Pooch Perks and don't forget to use the code FRIEND10 to get 10% off your first order!


Note: This review reflects my (and my pups'!) honest opinions. No referral links were used in this post.