Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Mirror Mirror on the (Shower) Wall

*I received this item free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

You'd think with as often as I'm standing in from of my mirror doing stuff for this blog I wouldn't lament my lack of mirrors in other places, but I do. Specifically I lament my lack of a mirror in my shower. I'm sure people who shave their faces feel my pain, though I don't need one to shave with. I need one to see what I've missed when I'm washing off my daily face mask in the shower. I've had several different mirrors in the past (even some with a built in radio), but the one sent to me by Soap on a Rope is my all time favorite.

There are mirrors that hang, and mirrors that attach to the wall, and this mirror attaches via the strongest suction cup in the world. You turn the ring to lock or unlock if from the wall and I legit haven't been able to pry it from my shower wall when it's locked in. So no sudden mirror dropping and shattering on the tile floor, which is how I lost a previous mirror.

The mirror surface is magnifying by a factor of 3, which can be a little jarring first thing in the morning, but I really love it for plucking my eyebrows. And I know my husband is really enjoying using it for shaving.

The swivel ball joint means I can tip it down for me or up for him, so no fighting over mirror placcement (which is what happened with the last shower mirror we owned). And the price isn't to bad, $24.99 with free Prime shipping. I'd personally like to see it about $10 cheaper, but I think the quality is good enough to demand that price. I give this two thumbs up.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Bad Review Times Two

*I received this item free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

It's not often I get shafted by a company who wants me to work with them, but it does happen. Getting something crappy happens about 40% of the time, but I rarely get shafted. Today I thought I'd only write one grumpy post instead of two and combine a shafting with a crappy product. So if you don't like that kind of thing I suggest skipping today's post.

Let's start with the crappy item, which admittedly isn't a beauty product but rather a kitchen product. I happen to love cooking, so sometimes I sneak in a blog post or two about kitchen stuff. My latest gadget it suppose to cut potatoes (or whatever you put in it) into perfectly shaped fries. Suppose to being the prime word in that sentence.

 I could not cut a potato with this thing to save my life. The hardest thing I managed to use in this was a cucumber, and I can cute those with my butter knives. It feels so flimsy that I was actually worried it would snap if I pressed any harder than I did for the cucumbers, and my one attempt at a potato did not end well. It is literally going right in the trash, and even though it was only a few bucks on Amazon it is still a total waste of money.

In case you don't know how these sort of posts typically go, a company sends me a code to order their product (for free) off of Amazon, though sometimes they send me the item directly. I prefer the Amazon route because I have Prime shipping and I don't have to wait around for them to actually ship it. Sometimes I get a company like TaliRokni who sends me a dud code and then won't respond to any of my messages FOR A MONTH! So I'm left with faking a review (which I've seen people do), taking the hit on my blogger score, or writing an angry post like this one and giving them the bad review. I'm sure you can guess which route I took. This was suppose to be a fashion post about a cute pair of grey business casual pants I was actually really looking forward to, but I have nothing but angry feelings. I will be filing a formal complaint against them, but for now they get a big ol zero in my book.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Adorlee Lavender Hand Cream

*I received this item free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

If you were to ask my husband he'd say I need another lotion like I need a hole in the head. But lotions are one of those things I seem to hoard. And it's not like I use lotion daily, I'm maybe a once or twice a week sort of girl. But there is just something about lotion that I love. Maybe it's the scents, or how nice they make my skin feels. I just can't say no to lotion, which is why I agreed to review a lotion I really didn't need. Now this isn't me saying this is a crappy lotion, this is me recognizing that I own a gallon of lotion and I may need an intervention.

Adorlee is a brand I'm not familiar with, I've never seen them in a local store before so they may be a online only brand. The lotion they sent me is labelled as a natural hand care therapy lotion for dryness relief, but I've been using it all over my body. Unless it's specifically for my face I'm going to use it all over, because that's how my lazy butt rolls.

It is a nice and thick lotion, which is a plus, and doesn't feel greasy at all. It absorbs really well and didn't leave any sort of sticky feeling on my skin, which is another plus. I guess my only real complaint is the scent. Now I love lavender, that's one of my favorite scents out there, but this is seriously strong! Enough that I can easily see this giving someone a headache, which means I can't use it before I go to work or around my kiddo. If you like your lotion with a heavy scent then you'd probably really like it, but for me it is just to much. I'd probably really like it if it was about half as strong.

My other big complaint is that their website sucks. I hate the scrolling picture format and it was a pain in the butt to actually find how much the product is. That alone would make me walk away and buy something else.They are $22 (says the grey font on a white/picture background), and shipping is only $2.99, but because it's from Canada there's some sort of fee attached. Yes, it's under $2 but still, for around $27 I can get several lotions here and not have to mess with it at all. So I'm calling this a pass for me, maybe something about this will float your boat.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

The Amazing Expanding Sponge

*I received this item free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

A major component of most makeup artist's kits is disposable items like mascara wands and sponges, but space can be an issue. So something that starts out small and compact but grows to a large size is a great option. Gold Cosmetics was kind enough to send me another disposable item to review, this time in the form of a sponge that goes from tiny to giant with just the addition of water.

These start out about as long as my index finger and as big around as a pen, so I could fit a TON in a small space. Once you get it wet it expands to a circle about the size of an average compact.

They're soft and flexible so I can wrap one around my finger to do precision blending (AKA around the nose), or I can cover a large area at once, like a cheek or forehead. Is it as nice a sponge as a Beauty Blender? No, but when I'm tossing it after each use it makes much more financial sense. I'd put these on par with the wedge sponges we all know and use. I wonder if these can be used to apply tanning lotion as well. I may have to test that theory out later this winter when I'm pasty white.

For $19.99 (for a set of 50) these are a good deal, and I'll be sticking some in my budding makeup artist kit for sure. I'm also really happy with the company and I think I'll be poking around their Amazon store some more and see what else they have to offer.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Smooth Viking Hair Care Pomade

*I received these items free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

While my hair is growing in nicely, I'm just now leaving the awkward mullet stage. Since it is not in fact 1992 a mullet is the last thing I want to wear, but I guess it's better than being bald again. I've been using and trying out lots of different hair styling products, some with good results, some with not so good results. Smooth Viking was kind enough to send me two different pomades to test out and review for you guys.

The first one is the super hold, which is kind of super glue for your hair. And the second one is the medium hold, which is more of your average level of hold. You can use them on either wet or dry hair, though I always used it on dry hair. My personal preference is to use products like this on second day hair to wrangle it into submission.

The actual product is clear, which was interesting since 99% of them seem to be white. It applied well and held my hair pretty well. Not as well as a straight gel, but enough that I'll continue to use them. I think my biggest issue was the scent. It's kind of a patchouli herbal scent, which can get a little overwhelming sometimes. I understand these are targeted at men primarily, but still. If you would like to purchase a tub for your own personal use they are $11.95 with free Prime shipping.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Disposable Mascara Wands, a Must Have

*I received this item free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

As I'm sure 99% of my fellow makeup addicts can attest to, getting to do someone else's makeup is a real treat. But one of the difficult parts of doing other people's makeup is making sure everything is clean and sanitary. One of the things that helps with that is disposable sponges and mascara wands. I'll be talking about the sponges in a few days, so for right now I'm going to share my thoughts on some mascara wands I was sent to review.

This 200 piece set is from Gold Cosmetics and Supplies, and can be found on Amazon for $18.99 with free Prime shipping. Each pack comes with 50 blue, black, pink, and yellow wands. There isn't a difference between the colors but I like having a variety of colors available to use so I dig it.

The stick part is long enough to hold and wield but not long enough to be awkward, which I appreciate. I've gotten ones with itty bitty handles in the past and they really just blow.

There is nothing fancy about the actual brush head, which makes them usable as a brow brush as well. I've actually been using a yellow one for my brows lately while I test out a new eyebrow pencil. And these work great for that, but I'd be surprised if they didn't.

Honestly these are basic, no frills mascara wands. But that's exactly what I need so I'm really happy with them. The price is ok, and I'm pretty sure the 200 pack will last me quite a while.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Coolest Invention Since Smart Phones

*I received this product free for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own*

Hi, my name is V and I am a tech junkie. I've been very lucky in that I was born before the big internet, cellphone, PC boom, so I've gotten to watch and enjoy the leaps and bounds the tech world has made over the last 30 years. One of the newest things that I'm most excited about are NFC tags, which are basically this little hot spots for your phone that will tell it to perform a set of tasks ranging from logging into a wifi network to switching to bluetooth and bringing up your navigation system. The possibilities are endless and I've been folloing them with interest for about a year now. I'm very lucky that I got a whole set of them to review for you guys.

The Crystal Cube NFC Tags by Utopiaplus are just like your typical NFC tag, though I think the design is both unique and pleasant. I've seen a lot that are basically a black square or dot, so these are fun enough I don't mind having them out and about. They are backed with 3M sticker tape so you can just program, peel, and stick. You get a set of 9 for $13.99 with free Prime shipping, which I thing is a decent deal. I'm sure you can find plain looking ones for cheaper, but I prefer my tech to look as nice as it performs.

Now you do need a program to...well program these, but there are plenty of free ones available. I personally am using the NFC Tools one, but I'll be upgrading to the NFC Tasks one here shortly. And I'm sorry Iphone users but no Apple products are compatible with any NFC tag, which I think is a major strike against Apple. I have one set up at work so that I just tap my phone to it and it connects to the secure wifi there. I'll be setting another one up in my bedroom to turn my alarm on, turn off my ringer, turn on music, and set a "I'm sleeping, I'll text you when I wake up" message for people who text me before I wake up in the morning. Like I said, there's a hundred different things you can do with these and I think the Crustal Cube ones work fantastically. I've yet to find a reason to complain about my set.