Cyber Monday

Happy cyber Monday! Hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Here’s a quick look at the Zoya cyber Monday box. (They just posted this preview on Twitter).The box is $20 with free shipping, so check it out. Looks like it has a mini bottle of Remove Plus and something from Qtica, among other things.Embedded image permalink


I’m a bit late posting this, and I’m not sure when the sale ends exactly, but Ahava has a great sale going on right now. Some of the items are up to 62% off. If you use the code BRADSGIFT you can get a free bonus 5 piece starter set (normally sold for $20 and valued at $32) free with your order thanks to the site Brad’s Deals. Check out the comforting cream which is $17, marked down from $45. They also offered another bonus set for $12 at checkout. I picked up the comforting cream, anti aging hand cream, a mud mask exfoliator and the free 5 piece set for just over 40 bucks total. You can get free shipping over $50 or sign up for a free trial of shoprunner and get free shipping over $25. Ahava lets you choose three free samples, and two of the options are reusable shopping totes. Pretty nice haul! They have referral codes and links, but honestly I have no idea what the rewards are for referrals so I’m not going to bother posting that. I also read that you can get an extra 20% off of your order with the code DEALMOON. I don’t *think* the codes stack, so you will probably have to choose between the extra 20% off or the 5 piece gift. (I went with the gift because with the holidays coming up, it’s good to have an extra present on hand). If anyone knows when this sale ends let me know and I’ll update this post. Thanks, enjoy!

Oh and if you’re unsure what to try from Ahava, I recommend the Dermud foot cream, it’s great stuff!

Save Some Money

Time for some more deals.

Birchbox is having a 30% off sale here. Aces get 40% off. Don’t forget that if you sign up by November 9th using a referral link, you get $10 to spend in the shop. Another excellent deal I found recently on Birchbox was when I was shopping for some eye makeup remover. I had previously received a sample of Marcelle Gentle Eye Makeup Remover For Sensitive Eyes, and had liked it alot. When I went to purchase it, it was $15. Then I noticed that you can get that product for FREE with any full sized purchase from Marcelle right now using the code MAKEUPREMOVER. I looked around and found that the Marcelle Oil Free Eyemakeup Remover Pads were only $10. So I ordered those, got the full sized liquid version for free with the code, paid for my order with $10 in Birchbox points and got free shipping with my Aces status. All the eyemakeup remover I could want and it didn’t cost me a penny! (Do you see why I love Birchbox??) They also have a free Eyeko eyelash curler ($18 value) with any mascara purchase right now. The code is LASHCURLER. Not sure which mascara to choose? They have a sampler of Benefit mascaras that looks pretty cute.

DecalGirl has 25% off of their entire site right now.

Zoya still has BOGO on fall shades with code FBG. Or you can still get the Spooky Glam Trio free with $25 purchase and free shipping with code GLAM3. As far as I know, Zoya codes don’t stack, so you’ll have to choose one deal per order.

Review: Madison Reed Hair Color

A while back I needed to dye my hair again, and I was looking around for a darker shade of red. I had dyed my hair red a couple of months before, but it was more subtle than I wanted. I was looking for something a little more vibrant because I knew from past experience that red hair makes my green eyes look brighter. I’ve been using Garnier hair color for a while with pretty good results, but I started looking at Pinterest trying to find a richer shade.

I stumbled across someone’s blog who had lovely deep red hair. She had a blog entry devoted to it and said that it was Trieste Red from Madison Reed. This brand is, as far as I know, only available online. I read through some of the information on their site and was pleased to see that they use fewer chemicals and more natural ingredients than most box hair color. I started reading the reviews, and to be honest they sounded too good to be true. Their site is full of glowing, happy reviews of people who loved their results. I was skeptical, but I also had a coupon code and thought it was worth giving it a try. I have waist length hair so I was happy to see that they have the option to add an extra tube of color for $10, rather than buying a whole second kit.

My order arrived in fairly good time, I’d say it was around the typical 5-7 business days or less. At the time I didn’t plan to review it, so I have no pictures of the packaging. It arrived in a long box, with the extra bottles of developer and color in it’s own box. Included in the main box was the color, the developer, two sets of gloves in their own little box, barrier cream to keep color off your skin, a wipe to clean up color that does get on your skin, small bottles of shampoo and conditioner, and a plastic cap to put over your hair. It really is a full kit, not just a box of color. I liked that everything was in it’s own little boxes and packaging, it was a very nice presentation and nothing got lost.

They include two sets of gloves so that you can use the second set when rinsing the color out. The gloves are black, not the regular clear kind. They work fine but seemed just a little tight, and I have pretty small to average hands.You might want to have an extra set laying around if you have larger hands.

I put the barrier cream around my hair line as instructed. It does in fact help keep you from getting dye on your skin. However I think I got it a little too close near my ears and the color didn’t take as well in those spots. I’m not sure if this step is really needed, but it’s handy to keep things neater, especially if you need to go out in public right after doing your hair. I usually do mine late at night so if I have any extra dye on my skin I have time to deal with it. The places where the cream got onto my hair weren’t a huge problem and I doubt anyone but me would ever notice that the color didn’t take as well there, just be careful about that. I should say that I ended up getting dye on my arms here and there also, and it came off just fine.

Mixing up the dye was easy, just like any standard kit. The only thing I didn’t particularly like was that the developer bottles that you mix in and use to apply the color are a little tough to squeeze. It’s not that noticeable at first, but if you have alot of hair, it gets kind of frustrating, especially when your arms are tired from being up over your head as you separate your hair and apply the dye. It’s just a minor thing, if my hair was shorter I would’ve been done much faster and probably wouldn’t have noticed it. If you think it might be an issue for you though, it may be worth buying the mixing bowl and brush to use instead.

That’s another nice thing about the Madison Reed website. They have all kinds of extras that you can add on to your order. Clips, dye brushes, plastic capes to protect your clothes, root touch up, and even shampoo and conditioner. You also have the option of choosing auto delivery, which I think is every six weeks.

My favorite part about the dye itself, was that it didn’t stink! Seriously! I’ve used alot of hair color of the years. With some of them I had to run out of the bathroom just to get a fresh breath of air (I’m looking at you, foam color), and others like Garnier had a much less offensive scent but was still noticeable. The Madison Reed color did not seem to smell anything but pleasant. That’s a major bonus in my book since, as I said, I have such long hair and it takes a good while to get it evenly colored. I was very glad that I bought the extra bottle, if you’re in doubt, just go for it. You could always save it for a later time. When I finished applying the dye, I used the included wipe to clean any extra dye off my skin. It worked well but seemed to irritate my skin a little around my neck and collarbone. Nothing serious, but I got a little red so I just got a wet paper towel and cleaned the rest of the dye with that. After my shower it was no problem.

Rinsing the dye out was similar to any other dye. While rinsing it out, my hair had that ‘just dyed’ feeling of being a little straw like, but as soon as I used their shampoo and conditioner it felt much softer. My hair looked nearly black when wet but as I dried it, it turned a deep red. Every single gray was covered perfectly, and the color was even and shiny. My hair felt soft and even healthier. I had read somewhere that it was good to wait 48 hours to wash freshly dyed hair, so I did that to try and keep the red from fading. It seemed to help, and I made sure to squeeze every drop of their sample shampoo and conditioner since it was sulfate free, so I got multiple uses from those.

Every time in the past that I’ve dyed my hair red, it’s been really messy. Many times the red dye will continue to stain towels days after I’ve done my hair (though I’ve never had that happen with any other color). With this brand, I never noticed it staining my towels, not even after the very first wash.

It’s been about a month since I used this dye, and I’m still quite happy with the results. The day that I did it, someone told me it was the best my hair had ever looked! It did fade a bit over time, but it just faded to a dark mahogany with a noticeable red tint in the light. I really liked this shade because while it was definitely red, it did not look unnatural. After 4 weeks the grey is still covered, except where the roots are growing out. Overall I am extremely satisfied with my purchase and I will definitely use this brand again. Who knew that all those positive reviews might actually be right? Obviously nothing is going to work for every single person, but compared to other home hair color I have used, this is my favorite. The only major drawback is the price, and you also have to pay shipping. On the bright side they have frequent coupon codes for various discounts and freebies, and a referral program. If you refer a friend you each get $15 for use on your order. Here is my referral link if you’re interested in using it. If you do, thanks so much! If you choose not to that’s fine too. (It would be silly of me to not post it, I love getting discounts and I like to share good deals with you guys too!)

That’s all for now. Leave a comment if you’ve tried this brand, or plan to! Also before I go, you can get a free spooky glam trio and free shipping from Zoya with a $25 order or more. The code is GLAM3 and ends on the 31st. Enjoy!

Birchbox Deal

Hello everyone… or, anyone who is still lurking out there. I know it’s been ages since I updated the site and I’m sorry about that. I’m not entirely sure that I’m ‘back’ with regular updates again, but I do have a few products and deals that I’d like to write about. So for now, I’m back. And thank you for showing up to read this!

And so, on to the deals!

Birchbox has posted a new referral deal that sounds pretty impressive. If you refer a friend and they subscribe by November 9th, BOTH of you get $10 to spend in the Birchbox shop. That’s pretty awesome. If you subscribe to Birchbox be sure to do your reviews each month for points. If you haven’t subscribed before, it’s also worth noting that they have changed up their methods a little bit. You now get an email that gives you quite a few options for customizing your monthly box. You can pick one of your samples from a list of options, or choose one of two curated boxes, or don’t choose anything and let the whole box be a surprise. They also have a few extra items on sale each month that you can choose to add to your box for the discounted price. Don’t forget to check out the Bonus shop, the Ace program, and coupon codes. Need a referral link to sign up? I’d love it if you used mine, (thank you!). It’s here. Use it and get $10 to spend in their shop! My box for this month included Benefit Roller Lash Mascara, ooh.

Also worth mentioning is that Zoya has a BOGO deal on fall shades of polish. The code is FBG and the shades it applies to are available here. This deal runs til 11/1/2015 at 11:59 EST.

I also found out that Wilson Leather has 50% off of alot of their coats right now. It’s definitely worth checking out.

That’s all for now. I’m going to try to have a review up soon for Madison Reed haircolor, as well as a few other things. Have a great weekend!

Bare Escentuals Sale

The Bare Escentuals website has free shipping this weekend, as well as a sale on their last chance items. (25% off with the code EXTRA at check out). You can pick up the Marvelous Moxie lipgloss in the shade Rebel for $1.00, and if you pick up something from the last chance section with it you’ll get the free shipping. They have high shine eyecolor for around $2, meaning that you could get a lipgloss and eye color for about 3 bucks, shipped free. They also have some other great markdowns, add it to your cart to see the final price. Happy Shopping and Happy Valentines Day!

Last Minute Valentines

As I’m sure you probably know, Valentines Day is this weekend, (also known as Single Awareness day to those of us who aren’t currently in serious relationships). But Valentines Day doesn’t have to be about romance, it can just be a day for showing the people in your life that you love them. I decided this year to get gifts for my mom and nieces, and I have to say, shopping for them was alot more fun than dreading a romantic holiday! So, whether you’re a guy who stumbled here somehow (hi!), or you’re looking for gifts for your mom, sisters, nieces, etc. here are a few ideas that you can pick up this weekend besides the standard flowers and candy.

Birchbox – Obviously has to be the first on my list. I’ve been a member for a couple of years now and I love getting makeup and skincare in the mail every month. Reviewing the samples you get earns you points to spend in the shop, meaning that I’ve been able to get alot of full sized products very cheap or free. They have coupon codes and sales, frequently let you choose one of your samples, you can get free shipping on full sized products from your box each month, and if you reach Ace status you get free shipping all the time and exclusive sales, deals, and perks. The main reason I recommend it as a gift is because you can order it at the very last minute and have an email sent to the person that lets them fill out their own address and profile. They won’t get their box for another week or so if you go that route, but you can set the exact date they get the email if you want that to arrive on Valentines day so they get something that day. You can give subscriptions for 3 months, 6 months, or a year. You can even have their first box sent to you to give it to them in person, but it wouldn’t arrive before Vday. I’ve given subscriptions of this at least four times and everyone seems to love it. There are many other beauty subscription boxes out there, but I haven’t found one yet that has as many perks and as much value as Birchbox. They have great packaging and really helpful customer service as well.

Giftcards – I know, it seems a little impersonal to give someone a gift card. But if you’re stuck for the right thing to add onto a gift, or you just waited too long and need to send something fast, egift cards are always a good solution. Personally, I love to shop so I am always thrilled to get giftcards. For Valentines day I would suggest Sephora, Victoria’s Secret, or even Amazon. Nordstrom can be a nice option as well because they always have free shipping. If you’re going to send a giftcard, it’s nice to think ahead about the potential shipping they may have to pay. You don’t want to send a $15 giftcard to a store that will take $7 in shipping. Even QVC has lowered their shipping prices recently on beauty items and some other things. Dooney & Bourke has giftcards too, if you’re thinking of getting someone a nice purse but aren’t too sure of their style.

Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette – What’s better than chocolate? Makeup that looks and smells like a chocolate bar. You can find this one reviewed online and sold through stores like Sephora and Macys. While you may not have time to order this online, there is still time to go out and pick one up.

Nail Polish – Nail polish can be a great gift for friends, nieces, co-workers, etc. Plenty of brands have nice sets, but if you can’t find one it’s easy enough to buy them individually. Grab some red, pink, and white shades and throw them together in a little basket or container. For a nicer look you can stick to one brand, but it’s not necessary. Check out Ulta for brands like Zoya, China Glaze, and OPI. Or if you’re pressed for time or cash, just check out the grocery store or Walgreens and such.

Candy – Okay, let me start by saying that I’m not a fan of those heart shaped candy boxes that they sell for Valentines day. I love chocolate, but I do not love chocolate stuffed with mystery goo. That is not to say that LOTS of people don’t love those boxes. The thing to remember here, is to know what someone likes. If the person enjoys those boxes it can be a great gift. If they don’t, then check out other options like those giant hershey kisses, or just grab a few oversized candybars that you know are their favorite. Once when I was young, a friend got me a gift and instead of tissue paper inside the giftbag, the bag was filled with Jolly Ranchers with the present hidden under them (those were a favorite at the time). Thoughtfulness can make any gift special.

Gadgets – Ipads, Ipods, Kindles, and other tablets are obviously great gifts for people who like gadgets. The Kindles are all on sale right now too. Also check out things like bluetooth speakers that can be fairly inexpensive and connect to your ipod, laptop, etc.

Jewelry – A classic Valentines option. If you’re in doubt, go for more simple designs. There’s a reason why diamond stud earrings are popular, they’re classic. Sterling silver hoops are also nice.

For Kids – If you’re shopping for kids it gets simpler. Teddybears and candy are the easy options, but be aware of allergies if you’re giving food. I found hot pink stuffed chihuahuas for some of my nieces. Notebooks, bracelets, pen sets, stickers and small toys are good too, just make sure it’s right for their age. You could even put together something similar to an Easter basket with a Valentines theme. I saw some light up heart shaped pillows on Amazon that looked cute too.

For Men – I always feel like men are very hard to shop for, at least the ones in my life. Never underestimate the value of baked goods here, whether you make them yourself or order them from a bakery. (Again, watch out for allergies!) Birchbox has a mens version if your guy is into products. Cologne can work, but it’s better if you know he likes a particular brand. If you have an outdoorsy guy, Coleman has a lantern that has snap off panels which is pretty cool – and it’s red!

Hope that gives you guys a few ideas at least. The most important thing is to choose thoughtful gifts. I always hate when people say that Valentines Day is a commercialized holiday about making money. It doesn’t have to be that at all. It’s just a day to set aside to show people that you love them. You don’t have to buy a single thing! Plan a picnic on the living room floor, plan an activity, or make something by hand. You can even find apps that will let you make a little video or collage, send ecards, or write emails and letters telling people what you like about them. It’s all about showing people that you care, and there’s a million different ways to do that. Check out Pinterest if you need more ideas! Enjoy your holiday! ❤

Review: Bare Minerals Bare Skin Foundation


Several months ago I was looking for a new foundation, and went to Sephora to check out a few options. I ended up trying out the Bare Minerals BareSkin liquid foundation, since I was already using the Bare Minerals loose powder foundation. I liked the way it looked in the store, but they were out of my shade (Bare Shell). I checked out several other stores and later looked online, and everyone seemed to be out of this particular shade. Once it finally was back in stock the holidays were coming up and I had other things I needed to spend my money on. Finally a few weeks ago I was able to order a bottle of it from Nordstrom (free shipping yay!).

The foundation itself is about $29, and they sell a brush that goes with it for $28. The brush has two levels of bristles so that the inner circle makes a little ‘well’ to put the foundation in. It seemed like a nice brush at Sephora, but I just couldn’t justify the price, especially when I had only tried the BareSkin once and wasn’t sure how it would work for me.

Anyway, so I got the foundation and decided to use a Bare Minerals brush I already had. It’s similar enough to the regular foundation brushes, thick with tightly packed bristles and a flat top. (Though its slightly more rounded than most flat top brushes). This brush seems to work fine, but I still intend to experiment with some others and possibly a beauty blender.

The neat thing about BareSkin is that its a serum foundation, so it comes out in drops. You only need a few drops to cover your entire face, meaning less waste and making it a little easier to justify the price compared to a drugstore foundation. There are fewer ingredients in it as well, which is better for your skin but requires you to shake the bottle well to make sure the foundation hasn’t separated. I’m pretty sure they told me at Sephora to shake it between each drop, even. Initially, I ran into some application issues, which delayed my review a bit because I wanted to get the hang of it better before I made up my mind about it. First of all, if you shake it well with the cap on, sometimes that works fine, and sometimes you open the cap and foundation bubbles out of the top. This was causing me to waste a good bit of product, or to end up using too much trying NOT to waste product. Finally I found a solution on a forum, and could’ve kicked myself because it was so obvious. Take the cap off to shake it. DUH. (Be sure to cover the opening, obviously!) Doing it this way solved about 95% of my issues with the bottle bubbling, although once in a while it still bubbles out a little as soon as I open it, even without shaking. I try to handle it carefully when I’m putting the cap back on to make sure I’m not squeezing it. The cap also clicks into place which I like, because you know for sure that it’s closed tightly.

The first time I applied this foundation, I had to go wash it off. I tried putting dots of it directly on my face and blending from there, and it just didn’t work right for me. Now I shake the bottle, put a drop onto the back of my hand, swipe the brush through it and start blending, working on one side of my face at a time. This keeps me from getting too much product in any one spot, which is important because of my only real issue with the product; this stuff really clings to dry patches. My skin tends to be dry especially in winter with a few slightly flaky patches. Even though I use moisturizer before my foundation, I’ve had issues with the foundation really highlighting any dry spots. This was even a problem when they applied it to my face at Sephora, so I don’t think it’s something I’m doing wrong. The only solution I have is to exfoliate, generally using Clarisea products. Also my Josie Maran argan oil seems to be helping to keep my skin smoother.

I really like the coverage of the BareSkin. It looks natural and as long as I don’t put on too much, the finish is really pretty. It lasts all day on me although I’m not sure that someone with oily skin would have the same results. In fact I really don’t even have to touch it up at all from morning til night if I don’t want to. Initially I thought it made me look a bit pale, and then I realized it was just covering the redness on my face better than I had expected. When I apply it I make sure to not blot it directly onto dry areas, and instead blend it towards them. I can usually cover my whole face and blend it down my neck with maybe two drops or so. That’s pretty awesome. Overall I am really happy with the BareSkin foundation. Occasionally, even when I shake it well, it comes out runny, but even then it still works allright I just might need to use a little more. That could also have something to do with the fact that my bedroom where I keep it gets pretty cold at times.

Since no foundation will work perfectly with everyones skin, I definitely suggest getting a sample, but I love this stuff. I feel like it covers better and gives a nicer finish than the powder foundation, at least for me. I wouldn’t have expected to need such a light shade, so I’m glad I let the helpful person at Sephora choose that for me. I didn’t realize I was so pale! I like that it’s long lasting, I don’t need alot of product, and I can build up the coverage if necessary. I don’t currently use a primer or concealer with it but I might try those at some point. They recommend two drops for sheer coverage, four drops for medium coverage, and six for full coverage, but I can’t imagine needing six. I’m hoping this means that the bottle will last a long time, since it’s not exactly cheap. Aside from the occasional bubbles I like the packaging as well. I do tend to have trouble actually removing it when I wash my face, but maybe I just haven’t found the right cleanser yet. I’m happy to have found this product and I don’t think I’ll be shopping for a new foundation for quite a while!


Hi everyone!

Since the temperature outside is quite cold and alot of you are dealing with some major snow, I decided to do something different with todays post. I’m going to share a recipe I found with you guys. This one comes from Pinterest and I’ve made it three times and it turned out delicious every time. Don’t you just love Pinterest? It’s such a rabbit hole.

All you need are three ingredients (technically two for the dough, but you need a little melted butter also) which means these are not only easy, but you can keep the ingredients on hand. So, what’s a great meal for cold days? Warm, fluffy, homemade biscuits! These are so nice when you come home at night and need something hot that isn’t too complicated to make. They’re very soft and taste amazing plain, with butter, or with honey. Now that I’ve got you hungry, here’s the link! The website also has some helpful tips about biscuit making in general.

The Country Cook – Cream Biscuits

(Note that this is not my recipe so I can’t tell you anything about the nutritional info or anything like that. All I know is that I found it online and was able to make it easily, despite not being that great of a cook. Mine did not rise quite as much and didn’t turn so golden brown, but were pretty and delicious anyway. Also I don’t have a biscuit cutter yet, so I just used a glass turned upside down and put flour around the top before each cut, and it worked out fine. They may rise more if you use a traditional cutter though).

Gift With Purchase

Just a quick post to let you guys know about a gift with purchase deal that Birchbox has going on right now. If you spend $75 or more you can get a free “Cheeki Thong & Boyshort Set”. The boyshorts will come in black or blush, and the thong is blush or indigo. Colors will vary and the code you need to use for it is CHEEKISET. These are one size made to fit 0-12. You can find pictures and more details here. Also be sure to check out their bonus shop to see what other samples and gifts they have going at any given time. Enjoy!