St. Ives



I received the St. Ives voxbox from Influenster to try 3 of St. Ives newest products for free.

The first product is the Even & Bright body wash. It smells refreshing (citrus), it suds easily, and it leaves my skin feeling clean and hydrated. It does a great job not drying out my hands a feet as much as other body washes.

The second product is the Oatmeal Scrub + Mask. It’s a light scrub so it exfoliates without being too harsh. It’s also a face mask that will make your skin feel soft and smooth.

Finally, I tried the St. Ives Refresh & Revive lotion. I like this lotion because it goes on silky, absorbs into my skin quickly, and doesn’t leave a greasy feel. It immediately works to moisturize my arms, hands, feet, and legs. The aroma is a pleasant pear scent.

Overall, I’m very impressed by this voxbox. I’ve been using the body wash and lotion daily. The scrub + mask is a nice thing to use every once in a while, depending on your personal skin needs.



2015 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,700 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

TastyKake Minis!


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Influenster sent me the TastyKake VoxBox recently to try and give my honest opinion about the new Tastykake Minis. The flavor I was sent was Reece’s Peanut butter.

Taste: Very sweet but delicious. Each packet comes with 3 minis and there are a lot of packets in the box, so plenty to share! The peanut butter did have that Reece’s flavor to it which made my mouth confused because….it’s a cupcake!

Value: I’m not sure how much each box costs, but if they’re priced the way most of TastyKake’s products are, then it shouldn’t cost too much. You get a lot of minis in the box so I would say the value is worth it if you’re looking for a sugar kick that actually tastes good.

Reactions: My 7 year old son devoured them! I only had a chance to eat 2 packets (6 minis) before my son commandeered the box and declared it his new after-school snack and that “no one else touch this box!”. Suffice to say, it only lasted about a week.

Overall: These are the perfect snack for kids or for adults on-the-go. They are small enough to fit in a lunch box, purse, or backpack and they aren’t messy. The only negative thing I can possibly think of is the sugar content. They are very sweet and as with all “junk” foods, it’s probably healthier if you only indulge every now and then. Remember, everything in moderation…I know…tell that to my 7 year old.

Follow TastyKake here:


Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs


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Through Influenster, I received the Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs voxbox. Inside was 1 small sample size of medium color. The Airbrush Legs is a leg makeup that supposed to allow you to go without stockings while wearing a dress or skirt.

There is an issue with this right off the bat; those of you who know me well already know where I’m going with this. I don’t wear skirts or dresses. I only wear shorts when I’m in shape and that hasn’t happened since 2007. Here’s the thing; I work from home and when I do venture out, I prefer jeans and a tee shirt. The rare occasions when I must dress up, I usually wear black slacks with a nice blouse and dress shoes.

That being said…I’m a good sport and I love participating in voxboxes so I decided to give this leg makeup a go. Here are my observations:

Color: They gave me Medium which seems the perfect shade for me but it went on looking rather orangey. I didn’t care for the color compared to the rest of my body.

Application: Meh. If you have used or currently use liquid foundation, it’s just like that except you’re using a lot more in order to cover your legs. The instructions say to allow to set before getting dressed. Another words, let the makeup fully dry before you attempt to throw anything on over it unless you want your clothing to have smears of makeup on them.

Smell: It smells like foundation. I didn’t notice it as much once the product dried but it was there while I applied it.

In Practice: I’m going to be honest here, I didn’t wear it “out and about” since, like I said, I don’t wear skirts or dresses. Instead, I tried it out in-house. Therefore, I can’t report on whether it holds up in heat (with sweat) or in rain. If my facial foundation is any indication, I would think it would rub off or smear in sweat and rain but I can’t vouch for that hypothesis in this review.

Removal: The instructions indicate that you should wash it off with soap, water, and a cloth. It is “water resistant” so I can imagine it may take a little bit of extra scrubbing to ensure it all comes off.

Price: I found this product on Amazon for $13.99 (plus free shipping for Prime).

Overall: I personally have no reason to ever buy this product. Even if I start wearing dresses and skirts (my mother would love that), I can’t imagine paying $13.99 for makeup that gets spread on my legs and feet. The application takes more time than just throwing on some stockings. Also, I would just feel self-conscious about leaving evidence of my presence in case it smears off me. Removing it is just a pain in the butt. I’d rather just peel off stockings and throw them in the dirty clothes hamper. As you can tell, I’m not thrilled with this product for my own personal use. I would recommend this for those who go through stockings like crazy and who are confident enough in the product that it won’t smudge off onto chairs. For the price, though, stockings are still much cheaper and less hassle.


Sakar iConcepts Headphones



This post is a little bit different than my most recent posts because this review isn’t about a free product. Actually, this review is about a super cheap product that I found in the bargain bins at my local Target store.

It seems Target is now carrying a brand called iConcepts (by Sakar) that offer electronics from earbuds, headphones, cell phone chargers, etc. The cool thing about this brand is that it is a value brand. I didn’t see one item over $5.

The $5 bin held different colors of the headphones. The box describes them this way, “Headphones with comfort cushions & in-line microphone” It can be used on any device that has a 3.5 mm plugin (ipod, mp3 devices, laptops, etc).

They look nice but I wasn’t expecting much in the way of quality for only $5. Well, I was pleasantly surprised! I’m on day 2 of using these and while the “comfort cushions” still make my ears ache a bit (I probably just need to get used to them) the overall quality seems much nicer than I anticipated. The sound, while not the best, isn’t bad at all. I haven’t had a reason to try the microphone yet, but I may give it a whirl soon.

If you’re in the market for some decent headphones until you can get a more expensive pair, I highly recommend this brand.

Bon Appétit™ Pizza


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BzzAgent sent me a coupon for a free Bon Appetit pizza of my choice. My local Publix seemed to only have two varieties, pepperoni & pesto and mozzarella & pesto. I chose the one with pepperoni.

Cooking: The cooking instructions for this pizza is identical to most other frozen pizzas. Pre-heat the oven, remove the pizza from the box and plastic wrap, place pizza on center rack, let cook for 10-13 mins, cut, enjoy. Usually, I can get away with cooking for the maximum amount of time, but for this pizza, probably due to the thin crust, I should have cooked it a couple of minutes less because the cheese got darker than I usually like.

Taste: It was fabulous! The artisan thin crust was crispy, the pesto gave the pizza a nice buttery flavor, and the pepperonis were thicker than most brands make them and they tasted fresher than the usual.

Price: Publix had these pizzas priced at $6, which seems pretty steep to me since these are small pizzas. I could eat a whole one by myself. The coupon said it would redeem the grocery store for up to $4.19 so it appears my local Publix just over-priced the pizza. If I can find these cheaper somewhere else I would definitely buy it again. I want to try the bacon flavor that I’ve seen on their website.

I do recommend this pizza for anyone looking for a fresher tasting, delicious frozen pizza that offers toppings that we don’t usually see on frozen pizzas (pesto, thick pepperoni). If the price really is that high everywhere then I can see buying this only for an occasional treat but not something I would buy every week or two.


(My pizza fresh out of the oven, cut, and ready to eat!)

Suja Essentials


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Bzzagent accepted me into the Suja mission. The kit included a coupon for a free Suja drink as well as several Buy One Get One Free coupons to use or share. My local Publix was having a BOGO on Suja today and they allowed me to use my free drink coupon for 2 bottles!

The flavors I chose were Mango Magic and Mighty Greens. Here are the rundowns of each:

Mango Magic: This juice contains apple, mango, orange, pineapple, banana, and ginger. The first flavor that I tasted was the sweet, tropical mango, followed by the refreshing orange and pineapple, then the familiar taste of banana. The last and worst taste for me was the spicy, grainy ginger. The end note once everything settles is an aftertaste of apple with ginger.

The ginger completely ruined the drink, in my opinion. The fruits all worked in harmony with each other until the ginger took over. This drink would have been perfect if not for that. If I were to rate this with stars (5 being the best) I would rate it a 3.

Mighty Greens: This one has apple, celery, cucumber, kale, collard greens, lemon, peppermint tea, spearmint tea, spinach, ginger, spirulina, chlorella, barley grass & alfalfa grass. I can’t describe the taste of this monstrosity because it all came flooding in like a bad dream. I took one sip and that was enough for me to slam the cap back on the bottle and vow to never open it again.

I remember the taste having a strong flavor of nature. Sort of like asking your toddler to go outside and throw a few fistfuls of grass, dirt, and whatever else he can find on the ground into a water bottle. Shake it and sip. I didn’t care for this drink at all, as you may have guessed. I gave the rest of the bottle to my husband to try since he loves smoothies and frequently buys a green one from another brand.

I handed him the bottle, walked back to the living room, sat down and just as my behind hit the seat he shouts from the other room, “Okay…you can take it back now!” I asked him if he liked it or not and he emphatically replied with, “It was disgusting. You can throw it away or whatever.”

So if my smoothie-loving hubby can’t even get past one sip, the rest of us don’t have a chance.

In conclusion: I recommend trying Mango Magic and maybe playing around with it by making a true smoothie with it or adding something else to try to dull the ginger. Stay away from Mighty Greens if you know what’s good for you(r tastebuds).

Special note:  All of the Suja Essential flavors (of which there are many) are made using cold pressure instead of heat that extends shelf life and helps retain important vitamins, enzymes and minerals. This according to the bottle.



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Influenster sent me the Dessange Voxbox to try. Dessange is a French company and has recently started selling their products here in the US.

I received shampoo, conditioner, and a leave-in conditioner made for dry and damaged hair. My first reaction upon opening the shampoo is the unpleasant scent. It smelled medicated to me. But I didn’t dislike it long because it lathered up quite nicely and seemed to really clean my hair. I have pretty thick and curly hair so I can tell the quality of a shampoo based on how quickly it lathers and how many times I have to wash my hair before it feels clean. With Dessange shampoo, I only needed to run it through my hair once.

Next up was the conditioner. The smell was much more pleasant than the shampoo and it had a very familiar aroma to me. I finally pinpointed it as cinnamon. For some reason, it works well in the conditioner but failed in the shampoo (in regards to scent alone). The conditioner left my hair immediately soft.

Once I got out of the shower and patted my hair with a towel, the final step was to use the leave-in conditioner. My first reaction was positive with this. Pumping a few drops into my palm, I could see and feel the oils. Some brands seem to water their leave-in conditioners down but Dessange seemed to fill theirs with beneficial oils. Massaging it into my hair I could feel how it moisturized my hair and didn’t leave a greasy film.

Overall, the process has left my hair very soft and easier to manage. While I don’t care for the scent, it’s worth it in the end. My favorite product is their leave-in conditioner, though. I can see myself using that even after washing and conditioning my hair with another brand (I regularly use Mixed Chicks).


Nescafe with Coffee-Mate!


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(Image credit:

Smiley360 was kind enough to allow me to participate in the Nescafe with Coffee-Mate mission. One I was honored to accept due to my absolute love for flavored coffee.

I own a Keurig, a multi-cup coffee maker, and a stove-top espresso maker. I love my coffee. But I don’t consider myself a coffee aficionado. I buy coffee based on type (light/blonde roast) and price (the cheaper the better). I flavor it with either powdered or liquid creamers and I love adding ice because iced coffee is easier for me to drink than hot coffee….and it tastes better! When I run out of creamer, I flavor my coffee with milk, Splenda, and cinnamon. Sometimes, I’ll even add vanilla extract if I happen to have a bottle handy.

I’ve experienced both Coffee-Mate (most of the creamers I buy is of this brand) and Nescafe so when I found out they have a product featuring both brands I almost had a heart attack (in a good way…well…as good as a heart attack can be). Almost the second I received the bottle of French Vanilla in the mail, I ran, not walked, to my Keurig and got myself a cup of hot water to add the Nescafe with Coffee-Mate.

First Impression: It smelled sweet and good. It tasted just as it smelled; sweet and good. The caffeine was enough to get me out of my slump.

The bad: The aftertaste is atrocious. That’s typical of my experience with instant coffees. Usually the aftertaste is the worst thing about it and this product was no different. Luckily, that experience didn’t hit me until after I drank the full cup so I was able to enjoy the coffee before the aftertaste bit into me.

The creative: I decided that in order to cut the aftertaste bit out of the experience, I may need to approach this product at a different angle. I decided to use it as a creamer instead of an instant coffee. I just see it as adding a bit more jolt to my already strong coffee. So the next day I made my regular coffee in my Keurig and instead of adding my usual creamer I used this Nescafe with Coffee-Mate. Three heaping spoonfuls of it and voila! a delicious cup of sweetened, creamy, coffee with enough caffeine to have me bouncing off the walls for hours – and this part is important, no aftertaste!

Final Impression: I don’t know if I plan to buy this in lieu of my regular creamers. I do like the idea of adding that extra zip of caffeine to my regular coffees but I’m not sure if the cost is worth it. For the same price, I can get a larger container of sweetened creamer (without the instant coffee). So when I go shopping, I’ll have to weigh it out: Do I want more zip in my regular coffee or do I want more creamer that will last longer? Depending on my answer will depend on whether or not I start purchasing Nescafe with Coffee-Mate. But I do recommend this product to anyone who drinks coffee. At least give it a try because it might become a staple in your home.

You can visit the Nescafe with Coffee-Mate Smiley 360 page here!

Boursin Spreadable Cheese


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(Image credit: gave me the opportunity to try a Boursin spreadable cheese for free via a mission. The mission is for me to give my honest opinion about the product.

To start off, I’m a big cheese fan but I’m not really into spreadable cheeses. I’ve seen them in the grocery store when I shop for Brie and Camembert cheese. But I have been a bit curious to try one so when this mission came up I jumped at the chance.

Boursin spreadable cheese comes in a variety of flavors such as Garlic & Herbs (image above), Spinach & Artichoke, Monterey Jack & Spicy Pepper to name a few. My local grocery story only had two flavors to choose from, the Garlic & Herbs and another one that I can’t remember now. I chose the Garlic & Herbs.

First impressions: My eyes read “spreadable cheese” but my brain was still surprised when I opened it and I faced mushy cheese. I’m so used to cheeses that need to be sliced or grated that I temporarily forgot what I was dealing with. Once the fraction of a second worth of confusion washed over me, the next impression I got was the strong aroma it gives off. It’s actually quite pleasant. I don’t mind the smell of garlic and actually, when I do smell it, it makes my mouth water because some of the best tasting dishes I’ve had garlic was a prominent feature.

Taste: I came unprepared for my tasting. I forgot to buy something to spread the cheese on. The only thing I had was hamburger buns and I wasn’t about to try that. So the next best thing was just to dig in. I took a fork and scooped out a tiny bit to try. The minute it hit my tongue I tasted the boldness of the garlic. It was almost as if I had bitten into a fresh clove of garlic. But it wasn’t unpleasant. It was actually pretty good. I immediately knew I had to try this cheese with something. It’s too much to eat by itself, of course. So I made a blue cheese salad and decided to crumble/spread some of this Boursin cheese into it. Since this spreadable cheese does have some crumble to it, it wasn’t as ridiculous as it sounds. The two cheeses together created a flavor explosion in my mouth! That was one delicious salad. The lettuce tamed both cheeses so it wasn’t overpowering. I was very surprised at how good it turned out.

Price: Because of the hefty price ($6.99 at my local store), I don’t think I’ll be indulging in any Boursin cheese very often. I wouldn’t mind splurging on this maybe once or twice a year but I didn’t love it enough to have it more often (as I do with Brie and Camembert).

Overall Opinion: I’m happy I was at last able to try a spreadable, flavorful cheese. It was a great experience that I recommend for all cheese lovers out there. I do plan to buy something like french bread to spread it on (I still have more than half of it left to eat) so that I can eat it the proper way. I would recommend this cheese especially to anyone looking to host a party. There’s enough in the package that everyone (if you’re hosting a normal sized gathering at your home) can have a few crackers or bread bits with this spread.

Come check out the Boursin page on Smiley360 here!