Friday, November 22, 2013

Escape Monthly November 2013 - Vermont Review

I received the Escape Monthly box today. This month's theme is Vermont. I really like the information pamphlet they send on the products, it helps explain.

I'm just gonna go ahead and apologize for the quality of the pictures. I haven't quite gotten the hang of getting rid of the glare, but yet still making the camera focus.

The travel guide! Vermont of course! I don't actually ever read these books. Instead of travel books, I wish they would send history books. Or books that talk about the culture of the area. To me, that would be a lot more interesting.
   I was expecting something maple, and this did not disappoint. The 1st item I came across was these Dislter's Maple Pretzels. They were pretty crunchy, and I can definitely taste the maple. I'm impressed. Also, I am pretty proud of myself for remembering to get a picture prior to ripping into it. The info card tells us this started from an 8th grade assignment, and 10% of the profits go to the Burlington Shelter. So, that's pretty cool.
The next item was Quinn Vermont Maple & Sea Salt Popcorn. This was listed as a bonus item. It sounds like such a unique combo that I can't wait to try it.

Lake Champlain Vermont Chocolates. I love chocolate and these are made from Vermont Maple Syrup, fresh cream, and local honey.

True North Granola Snack Pack. This is Ginger flavor. It's a small snack size bag, 1.6 oz. It's gluten free. Overall it's pretty tasty. 

Nature's Mysteries Twilight Face Cream. This is a sample size, I think. The jar was about 1/3 full. The info card say it provides both UV protection and anti-aging properties. Reduce and reverse the aging process with each use. Well, I'm all about that!

The next item was Way Out Wax Escentual Love Tea Lights (sorry about the poor pic). I have been meaning to pick up some tea lights, so when I saw this I was actually excited. But then I discovered it was scented tea lights. I normally like scented candles, and Escape Monthly has included them in every box I have received. But, this has lavender (allergic), rosewood, and patchouli (ugh). They smell pretty strong and I have not even opened the box. These go into the gift out box.

 Whisper Hill Olive Oil Soap. I don't even know what to think of Olive Oil soap. The card says it's a Vermont favorite, and supposed to be good for your skin. I really love Olive Oil ice cream, and I never thought that combo would work. So, I'm totally willing to try this. I hope it's as good as the ice cream.

Really sorry about this last pic, I just cannot get this camera to focus. The item is Belle Savon Peppermint Lavender Shea Butter. I saw Shea Butter and immediately put this in my purse. But then I read the info card and discovered there is Lavender, so out it came. Into the gift box it goes.

 Next Month is ITALY, and I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with for that!

 If you are interested in Escape Monthly, this is a link they sent me to share with my friends.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Honest Company November 2013 Review

I was looking into getting a bundle from the Honest Company for a while now but I was still debating signing up for another subscription box. But then Groupon had a deal running that was spend $20 for $40 worth of products, so I immediately jumped on that and ordered the Essential Bundle. The Essential Bundle is $35/ month and has beauty and household products that you choose from. You can pick five items and add on additional three items which offers 25 percent off. This company was started by Jessica Alba because she wanted to provide families with safe products that don't have harsh chemicals in them that could affect you and  your family's health. The shipping was incredibly fast. I live in WA and it shipped Monday and arrived Wednesday. 

I thought the packaging was super cute and was really impressed that they put the liquids in plastic bags just in case they leaked, but there were not any issues.

Honest Face+ Body Lotion-I love this lotion. Jessica Alba explains in her book that she is very allergic to fragrances so the products sold are hypo-allergenic. I love that this lotion doesn't have any harsh chemicals that I should be worried about. I really love the packaging. The cap is amazing. This Will be a great lotion for winter.

Honest Healing Balm-This healing balm can be used on diaper rash, irritated skin, eczema, and minor cuts and scrapes. I thought it would be a great staple product to have for the upcoming winter months.

Honest Honest Hand Soap Lemongrass-This was my favorite item and I have already added to next months order so I can put it in the other bathrooms. It has a light citrus scent and hasn't dried out my hands.

Honest Wipes (4 pack)- Another product I love! Biodegradable, hypoallergenic, chlorine-free, medical grade, and sustainably harvested. I work in a lab and love to constantly need to wipe down my station so these have worked out great. I also have kept a pack in my glove box. I will reorder these.

Honest Shampoo+ Body Wash- This body wash hypoallergenic, tear free, color safe, vegan, biodegradable, pH balanced, Naturally Non-toxic. It has a very light sweet orange vanilla scent. I love this body wash. It hasn't dried out my skin and works well with my loofah. I will definitely repurchase.  

Hand Sanitizer Spray (2 pack)- I love these. With winter months coming up I am constantly applying sanitizers to keep away the seasonal cold. The spray effctively kills 99.99 percent of germs and bacteria using all natural plant-based protection. 

I absolutely love this company and Jessica Alba is now my idol! After how happy I was with the products I ordered Jessica's book the Honest Life which discussed keeping your household free of harsh chemicals and beauty products. If you would like to subscribe you can sign up here. The hardest part of the service is deciding which 5 items to pick because I want to try them all!


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Stitch Fix November 2013 Review

 If you would like to know more about this company, you can read about it here: Stich Fix

I received my Stitch Fix box last week. I know, I'm a little late on this review. Before I get into discussing the box, I want to explain a few things. How Stitch Fix works, you pay a $20 styling fee when you order your "fix", which goes towards the cost of your order. You set up your online profile, and you are even able to send a message to your stylist. You are sent five items, and you only pay for what you keep. You have 3 days to decide what to keep. If you keep them all, then you receive a 25% discount on your total price. If you keep nothing, then you are out your $20.

The first thing I noticed is the prices for the items are pretty high. For the most part, they are not something that I would generally pay in a store. There are no sale prices either. I'm ok paying a little more than normal if it's a high quality product, but otherwise, forget it. I don't want to feel ripped off.

I had left my stylist some notes online, and explained my style. I requested that they not send me any accessories, and nothing with animal prints. I was mostly happy with what they sent, with one exception. I had asked for pants, career pants. I got them, but they were the cheapest grossest material I have ever felt. And the cost was $138. No thank you. I didn't even try them on, I hated them that much.

I love the concept of this box. I love how your stylist can surprise you with items, that you may not have thought of for yourself, or may not be able to find in the local stores. I love that they come in the mail, delivered right to me, and they have a pre-paid envelope to send back what you do not want to keep. Very convenient.

I decided to keep two of the items. I had the $20 styling fee to go towards my order. I had also received  a $20 coupon from PopSugar last month.  When you decide which items you want to keep, and what to return, you go to the Stitch Fix website and add your choices.

Now, onto the actual products.

I loved this shirt, and ended up keeping it. I like that it was different than anything I own, not the style, but the contrast. I love that it matches my conservative style, but is not so plain it's boring. But mostly, I love the soft material, and that is the primary reason I ended up keeping it. If I didn't end up keeping it for myself, K definitely would have wanted it. I believe this was $38.

I don't have the price for this skirt any longer. I had to send the sheet back that included the prices, when I did the return package. I loved everything about this skirt. The material, the color, print, style, and you can dress it up or keep it casual. Unfortunately, it was just slightly too tight for me in the waist. I thought of keeping it because it would be great if I could just lose those pesky extra pounds. But, I also promised myself not to fill my closet up with clothes that aren't ready to wear. So, I ended up sending it back. Reluctantly.

This blouse was very nice. Fit me perfect. I loved the color and the cut. The material was great also. I only sent it back because it's too similar to other items that I already own. I don't have a price for this one either.

This wrap dress was fabulous. As soon as I felt the material I knew I was keeping it. I LOVE it! It was $55, which is a little high for a simple jersey dress, but it was so soft I had to have it! I travel a lot and will have many opportunities to wear this. I love the style as well.

These are the work pants I mentioned earlier. They are so gross and a waste of space on earth. I don't know what the material was, but it was not a nice cotton blend, or a cotton/spandex blend. It was just stiff and scratchy and gross.  Very cheap material. They were $138. I wouldn't have spent $13 on them.


Quarterly Co - Nina Garcia Quarterly #NGQ01 2013 Review

I was very excited to see this box arrived today, I've been waiting. And waiting. And waiting. This is our first quarterly box, and we weren't quite sure what to expect. I was expecting this weeks earlier. The box was also smaller than I had been expecting, since this box was $100 which is more than most boxes. But you can't judge a book by it's cover, right?! The style of this box is Glam Grunge.

The tape used to seal the box is super cute! I loved it immediately.

I also smiled when I saw the sticker used to seal the tissue paper (yup, stuff like that amuses me).

My favorite part of this entire box was the fact that everything was wrapped, separately. It really was like opening presents, and I loved it!

It had an information card, that talks about the products. I personally, like to see things first, then read about them. But K likes to grab the cards and start reading along.

 The first thing I opened was this leather bracelet cuff. With studs. I wasn't sure what it was at first, but I hated it on sight. K, on the other hand, loved it and called it immediately. The card says it's a Leather Dual Cone Cuff by Baublebar. It also came with a coupon code to Baublebar, take $15 off of $30.

The next item I unwrapped was this faux fur stole by Adrienne Landau. I also hated it on sight. I personally do not like anything fur, even if it's only faux fur. I wasn't sure if it was a dead animal, or a hand warmer. But K immediately grabbed it and tried it on, and loved it. She plans to take it on our next trip, and use it when we visit the ice bar.

This next item actually made K gasp. This is a Jack Vartanian Ear Cuff. Again, I hated it on sight.  K ran to the mirror and tried it on, she LOVES it, it is her favorite item! 

Just when I began to sense a trend here, and thinking this box may not be for me, I opened up the VBeaute IT Kit Anti Age Skin Care System. It comes in a shiny metal container, which I was thrilled with. It is full of travel size anti-aging products. The case is designed to be refilled, and you can order online. This came with a coupon code to get $25 off a $75 purchase. This came with a serum, cleanser, exfoliator, eye cream, and face moisturizer. I loved the product card that came with it. This was my favorite item in this box.

The Too Faced La Crème Color Drenched Lip Cream was next. The color I got was Berry Sexy, and I really like it on me. The product card explained that there were four different colors that could be in the box, I am happy with the one I got.

The Essie Shearling Darling nail polish was a really cool color. I loved it!

The Pearl + Luxury Soap is made of charcoal and crushed pearl. I don't get it. K likes Charcoal products, but I just haven't gotten into them. So, K called this one.

The last item was the December issue of Marie Claire. It was the only item not wrapped. I was happy to see this, because I don't have a subscription to this one, but I love reading these types of magazines.

My overall impressions is that this was a very good value for the cost of this box. However, if it were just me, since there are several items that are not my style, if K wasn't around I would have a different opinion. This was a good blend of products I really like, and products K really likes. If she didn't absolutely love the items that I didn't care for, I would probably cancel immediately. For now, I will probably try one more and then decide if it's worth keeping the subscription.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

PopSugar Must Have Box November 2013 Review

Our PopSugar Must Have boxes arrived today! PopSugar is one of my favorite subscription boxes and it's $39/month. 

$30 Gift Certificate to CanvasPop- I hate that it's more like a coupon, as everything on the site is more than $30, but I have a few photographs I would love to use this for that I took whale watching in the San Juans this summer.

Barefruit Crunchy Sea Salt Caramel Apple Chips($1.00)- These chips are 100 percent real fruit. I tried them and they taste pretty good. I am not a huge apple chip fan but I will pack this in my lunch this week.

Lands End Single Canvas Wine Tote ($19.50)- I love the colors! I am not a wine party girl but maybe I can find a vodka bottle that it will fit ;]

Absolute A! Nail Polish Remover in Spring Fresh (32 pads) ($1.99)- I love the portability of these, and I am always looking for new nail polish removers. Mom received the lemon scented ones and I got the lavender. I haven't smelled the lemon but the lavender ones are okay for lavender, I really wish I had received the lemon scented ones!

The Soap and Paper Factory Shea Butter Soap ($8)- This shea butter soap is free of parabens, petrochemicals, additive, phthalates, and dyes! However the name Roland Pine doesn't do it justice, it literally smells like a pine tree. I love the idea for how festive it is, but I am not digging the scent.

Maison de Monaco Strawberry and Blackcurrant Cream Preserves ($6)- The description states "Get your traditional French fix with this mouthwatering Maison de Monaco preserve. Hand-cooked in San Francisco in small batches and made from 70 percent fruit, the strawberry and blackcurrant jam will become your go-to spread all year long." I am excited to try this it looks so yummy!

Michael Stars Folk Art Wrap ($42)- This scarf is great! I love the bold print and how soft it is! I will definitely be adding it to my fall wardrobe. I cannot get enough scarfs this fall.

Illume Candle (6.2 oz) ($15.75)- I LOVE LOVE LOVE this candle. First of all it's a soy candle which is the only kind I will burn in my house, but they tend to be more pricier so I haven't gotten one in a while and I was just thinking I wish I had one! It looks like there were two possible scents to receive Naughty or Nice. Naughty has a spicy wooden scent per the description but Nice has a sweet vanilla scent, and I love it!!

This months box adds up to a $94 ($124 if you include the Canvas Pop gift card) value and I paid $39.99. Overall I am very happy with this months box and feel like they redeemed themselves from last month's box! I will use all the products and I am very happy that they kept environmentally friendly products in mind this month so I can actually use everything! If you would like to sign up you can here.  

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