Monthly Archives: June 2012

6.27.12 mail goodies

DOVE prize pack from a Twitter contest!

Bzzagent campaign for Keurig’s Brew Over Ice k-cups (I received 3 boxes with a variety of tea & coffee)

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Telestrations – House Party

Recently I was selected by House Party to host a Telestrations party in my home! After watching the How to Play portion on the website, it looks like what would happen if Pictionary and Telephone fell in ♥ and had a baby! It’s a game that is appropriate for all ages and up to 8 players can play at once making this the PERFECT party game!

My game pack arrived today and I am even more excited to host!

The party package included:

  • 2 Telestrations Board Games (in case we wear one of them out)
  • 1 “Laughed So Hard I Cried” Box of Tissues
  • 1 Pack of Telestrations Party Balloons
  • 14 Mr. Telestrations bendie collectibles (which should make photo taking even MORE entertaining)
  • 14 Mr. Telestrations Fun Masks (erasable too!) – who doesn’t love silly masks?
  • 14 coupons to purchase the game for $24.99 instead of $29.99 at your local Target (good through 7/29/12)

The party instructions also let me know that there are a few extra fun activities I can throw in to enhance the party atmosphere and even encouraged me to come up with my own which may or may not be a good idea. 😉

How cute is HE?

More photos and a detailed review of the party to come. Videos if you’re extra lucky!

FYI you can apply to host your OWN House Party events via their website for free. Just apply for ones that interest you the most as honestly and possible then keep those fingers crossed!

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Mail Goodies 6.21.12

  • Target Summer Beauty Bag (my favorite one yet) – TRESemme samples, Neutrogena SPF 70 Sunblock sample, Revlon sample, Aveeno samples, Garnier Fructis samples, coupons – from Facebook
  • Nature Valley bar – from General Mills
  • Tecture first aid gel samples – from ???

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Mail Goodies 6.18.12

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  • 9 Palmers freebies from a Twitter giveaway
  • 4 Bounty coupons from Vocalpoint 
  • July All You magazine
  • 5 free Essie nail polishes bought with Amazon gift cards earned from completing surveys
  • 4 Tide pods samples from Vocalpoint
  • Coupon for free Kashi product from Self Magazine giveaway
  • Color Scents scented garbage bag sample from Facebook
  • 2 packets of olive samples from Facebook

Want your own mail goodies? ‘Like’ my page here!

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Pam Grilling Spray

Up until about 2 months ago I knew as much about grilling as I do about rocket science (bonus points to those that took that to mean I’m a GENIUS). Since receiving a grill from my BIL and sister as an early wedding gift my fiance and I have really fallen in ♥ with the art that is BBQ. The only downside? The time and effort it would take to CLEAN the grill after steaks, burgers, chicken and their accompanying marinades/oils had their way with the grates. He’d spend at least a half an hour soaking and scraping it as best as he could (that statement being the key part) but it was never up to par.

That is until I picked up a bottle of Pam Grilling Spray:

Since it was free with a coupon I had received through a swap with a friend I figured we didn’t have anything to lose if it didn’t work! Well, to our delight and amazement it worked extremely well! Most of the char  and other typical grilling debris wound up collecting at the bottom of the grill as opposed to putting a choke-hold on the grates themselves. That meant hassle free cleanup the next time we wanted to grill (which is becoming around twice a week). For our recent wedding shower he was able to put the cleaning task off until the very last minute instead of stressing about it because he knew without a doubt that it wouldn’t be as messy or strenuous.

I haven’t noticed if it has improved the taste of our BBQ but Pam works so well in the kitchen that I don’t doubt it definitely gives at least a small flavor boost! I highly recommend it and it’s fairly affordable around $3 a bottle but even less when you pair a sale with a coupon! I definitely plan on starting a mini stockpile for it.

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LUSH bath bombs

For convenience purposes, showers are definitely my preference. BUT when it comes to a little R&R – which for some reason I rarely make time for – I go out of my way to pamper myself. A few years ago a close friend introduced me to the tiny slice of heaven of a brand called LUSH. We were discussing books and how tricky it can be to actually read in the bath when the topic of bath bombs arose:

Meet Mrs. Whippy

I had never heard of such a product and quite honestly felt a little old school boasting about my bath salts and dissolving rose petals . As it turns out I was hooked from the very moment I laid eyes on the website! The thought of small explosions kicking off my bath made me smile! Once she added in that all of their products are made from fresh, organic* fruit and vegetables, the finest essential oils and safe synthetics &  are completely candid about where said ingredients are made I was sold. An added bonus – their packaging is a green as humanly possible. Less waste AND a killer product – yes please!

The bath bombs are a tad on the expensive side (ranging from $4.95-$6.25 depending on the size) BUT worth every penny in my opinion as I do not use but maybe 1-2 a month. We all deserve a little treat and what better than an organic one? I have tested practically every kind they offer on a regular basis plus a few holiday themed ones and some of my top faves are:

Sex Bomb

Vanilla Fountain

Big Blue

And the one I order the MOST of:

Butterball

The bombs leave your skin feeling extremely hydrated and incredibly soft – no lotion required! I highly recommend rinsing off out your tub immediately after as the bombs can make the shower a bit slick and depending on the color of your bomb it can leave a thin color ring that easily washes away with a rag/water.

I bought my first set of bombs via their website but soon realized that there are a few shops inside Macy’s close to my house (use the store finder to see if there’s one near you)! Saving on shipping is never a bad thing and I liked that I could touch/smell each one before selecting. Make sure to check back around the holidays as I mentioned earlier – their themes are adorable!

Enjoy!

 

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VEET® Ready to Use Wax Strips,

I was given a free box of VEET® Ready to Use Wax Strips, Leg & Body Sensitive Formula because I’m a Klout influencer. I was under no obligation to receive the sample or talk about this company. I get no additional benefits for talking about the product or company.*end disclaimer* 😀

Now, before I get into the nitty gritty details of this at home waxing session (wax on, wax off!) let me give you a little background on my “hair care” experience to date – I’ve strictly been a shaving cream and razor gal. No funny creams, waxes, masking tape (I kid), etc. – just me and old reliable. Now I have tested just about every single razor under the SUN but that is not what I am here to discuss today so buckle up, this might take awhile.

Waxing scares the color right out of me but I made a promise to myself that if I was going to product test or receive freebies just for my online influence I owed it to the brands to completely and honestly test/review the products. I read each and every direction on this box forwards, backwards, sideways and well, you get the picture. I even heeded the strict warning to “TEST YOUR SKIN REACTION by applying the wax and a wipe to a small part of the area you wish to treat, following the directions for use. If after 24 HOURS there is no adverse reaction, begin waxing.” It seemed fairly simple to follow so I dove right in after making sure the test area was absolutely and 100% free of lotion!

I selected a strip and started warming it in my hands as instructed before slowly peeling the two pieces apart. I place the longer end of the strip down near my ankle and started using the palm of my hand to help the wax adhere to those pesky hairs in a deliberate downward motion (the direction of hair growth). Being careful to hold my breath and make sure I was prepared to peel the strip off staying as close to my skin as possible as opposed to up and out, I DID IT! I yanked it off so hard I thought I might not have any skin left but you know what? Other than a brief moment of shock and discomfort it wasn’t all that horrible. I think the sound it actually made was more frightening than the actual pain itself.

Now, if you’re a fan of pore strips you’ll be oddly fascinated with this process. I might have even grossed my fiance out a little bit with how closely I was investigating the strip after it had finished its first round. It worked like a CHARM other than some slight first timers errors I made which will be addressed near the end of this review. I used one of the handy wipes included in the package to remove any excess wax – which was virtually none to my surprise. For the first 15-20 minutes after my leg did start to appear as if it had a rash but that was just the agitated areas where my hair follicles used to take up permanent residence until VEET® evicted them. Soon after my skin started to slowly return to a normal color and the tingling faded away. By the morning my skin was completely normal and ENTIRELY free of stubble of any sort. Color me impressed! Bonus – it didn’t STINK! The little pads they give you to remove the extra wax smells quite pleasant.

Last night I finished the job and while the first leg took longer than I had anticipated the end result was magnificent. By the second leg I was starting to feel slightly pro-like but still knew I could do better during the next session. Since I’m a natural blonde and I don’t have particularly dark or thick hair on my legs I opted to only wax the lower part of my legs, the knees and a small area around the top of my thighs as I knew a quick once over with a razor would take care of the rest.

A few tips I learned from the process:

  • When applying the strip, make sure you have a a bit of pressure at the top of it to keep it in place. If it slides while you’re applying it, the wax that gets stuck to the area that is NOT being peeled off is extremely hard to remove.  .
  • Pay close attention to the direction and speed at which you remove the strip from your leg. It must be done as if you’re peeling back a lid and not trying to yank your skin up and off. If you have any scars, varicose veins or other sensitive areas of your legs/body this product is NOT for you.
  • The strips are actually reusable during the SAME session (as the side of the box states) which I was a bit unsure of at first but I was able to use each side of the strip 2-3 times before making an executive decision to toss it.
  • It advises not to use it on the same area more than once during the session but I wound up having to break that rule for a few stubborn areas I missed. The result – the skin was a little more agitated than the rest but it too quickly resumed a normal appearance after 15-20 minutes.
  • Do not apply any type of lotion, scented soap, etc to the area for at least 24 hours afterward. No swimming either for the same amount of time as I cannot even imagine the havoc chlorine would wreak on the area.

In summary I am extremely impressed with this product thus far. The box boasts smoothness up to 4 weeks so I am planning to do an update on here right around the time they start taking back on a prickly pear appearance just to log my own personal experience compared to that timeline.

If you’d like to try it out for yourself, you can print out a $2 off any VEET® product coupon via this link!

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AmLactin Ultra Hydrating Body Cream

This past week I received a free 1 oz sample of AmLactin’s Ultra Hydrating Body Cream courtesy of Viewpoints :

The packaging says the following:

  • Heal severe dry areas
  • Smooth, repair and soften
  • Fragrance free (I personally prefer & love lightly scented products)
  • Dermatologist recommended/clinically approved

I wouldn’t classify my skin as being particularly rough or dry but it could afford some TLC so I was excited to try this product! I opted to test it out on my hands first using the same amount of hand cream/lotion (quarter sized dollop) as I would any other product.

The cream is, for the most, virtually scentless although I did detect a hint of something medicinal about it but then again this isn’t marketed as a Victoria’s Secret type lotion so I didn’t put much merit into it. The cream did NOT absorb quickly – in fact – it seemed to be in no hurry to jive with my skin and I spent about 30-60 seconds just pushing it around my skin before deciding that an emergency tissue was in order. I wiped off the majority of it which left my skin feeling extremely soft BUT with a slight tacky/sticky feeling that I personally am not a fan of. I didn’t even want to put my engagement ring back on. 😦

Now, this product might have flopped with me because I do not NEED this type of product but it might be just what someone else has been searching for! I am not going to let the rest of it go to waste, though. I have big plans for it to have a slumber party with my feet this evening complete with a sock sleeping blanket and will see how it fares against my soles after parading around in heels for most of the day.

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Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser

This review is a little different than most others I have posted in that it is completely of my OWN ♥ of the product. I have been purchasing it for years and no matter how many samples I try or other products I give a chance I always gravitate back to Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser!

In a time where “new and “innovative” brands release products claiming to be the best thing since sliced bread it’s really hard to know what will and will not work for you without spending a ridiculous amount of time/energy and most importantly cash. I’ve been fortunate enough to not have major skincare issues to deal with but I still have to be mindful of  maintaining A+ skincare to keep blackheads under control, occasional blemishes at bay and try to appease my combination skin in general!

Some highlights of the product pulled from their website:

  • Soap-free
  • Oil-free
  • Non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores)
  • Hypoallergenic

This cleanser dispenses as a liquid but quickly foams up after adding a little water to it so a little dab goes a long way. Think of it as the Dawn of face wash! 😀 It doesn’t have a strong scent and most importantly it doubles as a cleanser AND a makeover remover! If you think they are one in the same or that most cleansers can perform this way I challenge you to compare how well it removes eye makeup compared to its competition. As a contact wearer who doesn’t always remove them before washing my face (shame on me) it comes as a bonus that it doesn’t burn your eyes while I’m scrubbing away!

It leaves my skin feeling extremely clean, refreshed and in need of only a small dollop of moisturizer. What does YOUR cleanser leave you feeling like?

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Neutrogena Revitalizing Lip Balm

BzzAgent – a wonderful product testing site – recently selected me to be one of the lucky members that made the cut to test and review a few Neutrogena cosmetics: Revitalizing Lip Balm (in Healthy Blush, Sunny Berry & Petal Glow), Healthy Skin Brightening Eye Perfector and Nourishing Eyeliner. I really enjoyed all 3 of the products but the one that was a true standout to me was the Revitalizing Lip Balm:

On a typical day you won’t catch me dead with anything on my lips so for me to praise any type of product that takes up on camp on your lips is extremely rare. I really cannot stand the way most lipsticks, glosses, etc. feel on my lips let alone how they taste because inevitably SOME of that is going to wind up in your mouth – yuck! But this product was the closest thing I have found to harmony for my lips.

The gloss I tried was Petal Glow and the color LOOKS a bit dark coming out of the twist-up tube but once it’s on it’s more of a delicate sheen that adds just a small pop of color. The texture of the gloss was extremely smooth – not tacky like a lot of gloss or lipsticks I have tried wound up being. It was extremely easy to apply and wipe off when the time came leaving my lips softer than they have been in ages (which may or may not be the product as I am in dire need of exfoliation). I didn’t notice a strong taste or smell and was pleased to be able to sip from a straw without leaving a “clue” behind! Although for most it will seem a bit pricey for a lip gloss – around $8.99 retail – but keep your eyes peeled for coupons and sales! Never pay full price. 😀

I am extremely excited to try out the other 2 colors now that I know it’s a great match for me. I’ve always wanted to don color on my lips but gave up after years of wasting money so I suppose this campaign was destined for me!

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