Thursday, April 30, 2015

D-Knight Magicbox Bluetooth Speaker Review!

Sometimes I'm selected to review a product that I didn't know that I needed in my life. I accept the offer to receive it for free thinking "Sure. What the heck. I'll find a use for it." and then I end up LOVING it and using it every day. In the instance of D-Knight Magicbox Bluetooth Speaker, I'm HOOKED!

I love things that I can jump immedately into using without having to read the instructions. The description of the product included "Bluetooth", so I figured I'd be fine if I turned the speaker on and turned the Bluetooth on my phone on. Instantly, I was able to pair the two, and a chime let me know that the connection was solid.

After I had the basics down (thanks to my Amazon Prime Music app), I explored the buttons. There's a button to connect the phone to the speaker, a button to skip forward and backwards through a playlist, and a pause/play button.

On the side, there's a slot for a memory card, an auxiliary input, a power switch, and a mini USB port for charging. The speaker came with a cord that allows it to be charged and it charges QUICKLY. I've gotten hours of use out of just half an hour of charging.

I placed this speaker in my car because the sound quality is so much better than my sound system. My car's stereo isn't old (it's 2014), but this speaker is just so clear and LOUD that it's hard to beat. The distortion doesn't happen until a surprisingly high volume.

The speaker itself is sharp looking! The plastic (or metal? I can't tell) mesh is black, and the top and bottom are non-skid silicone. The buttons are silicone as well.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this speaker! It's so awesome that it's definitely on the list of things that would be a great gift for anyone! I highly recommend it if you're looking for a louder way to play your music or an alternative to your car stereo. It's a fantastic gift for the music lover in your life!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Making Weighing In Fun: Smart Weigh Memory Scale Review!

Let's face it: nobody likes to weigh in. Usually, when you're using one, you're looking for a change. Whether it's gaining weight or losing weight, you're typically not happy with how you are. This gives the scale a negative image. When I received my free product to test, I didn't know how I felt about it. However, when I pulled it out of the box and saw that it was absolutely GORGEOUS, I couldn't wait to have it on display in our bathroom. As silly as that sounds, this scale is truly sophisticated and artistic looking. I couldn't wait to give it a try, despite not quite being happy with my appearance.

When I stepped onto the glass surface (THAT made me nervous but after a few one-footed steps, I gained the courage to trust it), I realized that it would easily hold my weight. The glass surface is smooth and thick, so it's not going to break. The details of the surface are done in mirror glass. It looks fantastic because it will reflect whatever decor is around it.

The digital readout of the scale lit up and displayed my weight very quickly. It's a blue LED color that glows very brightly. It wasn't until I had my husband step on the scale that I realized that the scale stored memories of weights and their changes. A number "02" appeared next to his weight. When he stepped off, I stepped back on and immediately, "01" appeared along with my current weight. The next day, when I weighed in, I had gone down in weight. My weight appeared on the screen, and the difference between my weight the day before and the current day appeared at the bottom next to the "01". So the scale remembered my weight AND told me the difference. I could tell this by looking instantly because the display turned green. The next day, I had gained weight and the scale told me how much. I knew that I had gained instantly because the display turned red.

I LOVE this scale. It's ease of use is unparalleled in that it does all of the math for you, and can do the same thing for multiple people. With its sleek design and sturdy, quality construction, I would highly suggest it to anyone!

Organic Peppermint Lip Balm by ABCD Vitamins!

Hello, hello, hello, everyone!

As it's getting warmer and we're gravitating more towards outdoors activities, it's important to remember the effect that the sun has on your skin. Nothing is more inconvenient than having sunburn or peeling on your lips. Maybe your lips haven't fully recovered from the winter! Either way, I've got the product review for you, so listen up! :)

I was recently selected to review a free product sample of ABCD Vitamins' Organic Beeswax Lip Balm. There are a couple of reasons that I really like this balm. The main one is very minty scent. I've used an organic peppermint lip balm in the past, and it wasn't as strong as this one. The flavor and scent are equivalent of having an actual piece of candy in your mouth. This can be good or bad...depending on your personal likes.

Another thing that I noticed was the formula. I LOVE beeswax. It glides on smoothly and evenly and absorbs quickly. It doesn't feel greasy or heavy. I think that the strong mint quality reddens my lips slightly, which I'm not a fan of...but if I'm in need of serious healing, adding a tiny bit of redness isn't the most of my problems! This balm has an SPF of 15 so you're protected from sun damage as well!

As far as the packaging goes, I think that it's great that it's very simplistic. The four balms come in a plastic sleeve with a simple ingredient, logo, and product name label. The tubes of balm have the same design as the package and are all safety sealed. I LOVE that fact, because I can tell that they've never been opened. The tubes are the size of a typical ChapStik, so they're easy to carry or throw in your purse.

In all, I really like these balms and I love that they're all natural! Beeswax is my favorite lip product and ABCD Vitamins has done a great job of making it enjoyable with the minty, fresh scent.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Chromo Apple Lightening Charger Review!

Any time that I can review a product that compliments something I already have, I go for it! I've tested phone cases, craft supplies, etc. and it's always good for me because it typically helps me to more efficiently use what I already have! That's exactly what happened when I decided to review a free product sample of Chromo's Apple Lightening Charger. My iPad seems to ALWAYS be dead, and the charger that came with it stopped being effective long ago. I was excited about trying a new charger because it HAD to be better than what I already had!

When the charger arrived, the first thing I noticed was how compact it rolled up to be. The second thing was that the cord was flat. I wasn't sure about this, but I actually like it. I feel like the cord is much more sturdy and less likely to be bent and break internally.

The most impressive thing about this charger, though, was the fact that as soon as I plug my iPad in, it immediately turns on, even if it's completely dead. The speed that the tablet charges at is insane! I've never used a charger that charges more quickly!

If you're looking for a super high quality alternative to cheaply made Apple chargers, I would highly suggest Chromo's!

Cute and Cuddly Pet Supplies' Enzymatic Cleaner Review!

As someone who shares a home with twelve cats, four dogs, and various other animal friends, it's easy to have pet odors. It isn't easy, however, to fight them. Recently I was offered the opportunity to review a product to help with this! I was kind of hesitant about fully trusting a product to take care of the problem, but when offered the free sample, I said "why not"?

The first thing I noticed about the product is that the bottle is really big! You're definitely going to get your money's worth! The squeeze spray pump is very easy to use, operates smoothly, and doesn't jam up. The cleaner is pulled up through the plastic straw quickly and easily with very few, if any, air bubbles.

As for the cleaner itself, it is fantastic! I've noticed after using it, pet odors are gone. This is really hard with urine, but it is effective with making the house and floors smell fresher and making the ammonia smell disappear. Typically, cleaners like this are very harsh and chemical-y, and you're not really sure if they're safe to use around pets. Cute and Cuddly Pets Supplies' cleaner is all natural and toxin free. It is child, pet, and Earth friendly because it is enzyme based and not chemical based.

If you're looking for an effective way to get rid of pet odors, I'd highly suggest Cute and Cuddly Pets Supplies' Enzymatic cleaner!

Get your bottle here!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Pure Silk Sleep Mask Review!

The only problem with being married to my husband is that we are on TOTALLY opposite schedule. Obviously, this isn't a dealbreaker or anything, but it CAN be inconvenient. He works nights, and I work days. When he comes home, he sometimes needs to get into the closet or look for something in the bedroom so the lights come on. When he's asleep (during the day), the blackest curtains don't block all of the light from our bedroom that is mostly windows. He has a hard time staying asleep, so when offered a free product sample that could help him, I accepted it!

The silk sleep mask that I received is much nicer than I expected! I was looking for it to be thin, nearly transparent (because that's the nature of silk), and to slide around a lot. Typically, when I see these masks, they are made of a polyester blend. Also, I wasn't sure if it would work for my husband because typically these masks are smaller (as the majority of consumers are women). However, when it arrived, I first noticed that it was VERY thick. There are multiple layers of silk, and possibly some filling. The mask isn't transparent at all. The elastic band is adjustable, which allows the mask to be fitted to the size of your head. The silk is nice and doesn't feel irritating on my skin. It blocks light very effectively, which is the main point that I examined. 

If you're looking for an awesome mask at an awesome price that is awesomely comfortable, I highly suggest this one! 

You can buy yours here

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Doll Face Eyeshadow Brushes!

Anyone who knows me knows that I have a few obsessions. One of those would be eyeshadow! I have TONS of palettes and there's no better way to apply them than with brushes. Since I've discovered brushes, I'll never go back to applying any makeup with anything else! When I had the opportunity to review a new set, I was all over it! The set first caught my attention because of how cute the brushes are! They have a matte black handle bottom and the top is hot pink metal. The logo for Doll Face is ADORABLE! The weight of the brushes is nice and they're the perfect length for all sizes of hands. I held them in different places, and they always worked awesomely!

In order to have the best review possible, I wanted to use the brushes for a few weeks and wash them a few times. Through various types of washes (with different scrubbing material and different soaps), I didn't lose a single bristle through the use, washing, drying, and reuse process. The bristles are extremely fluffy on the soft brushes, and just firm enough on them eyeliner and crease brushes. The set comes with two fluffy brushes, a shorter bristled brush, a stiffer, angled brush, and an eyeliner brush. 

You can get a close up view of the brushes in my video below! 

I highly suggest these brushes for beginners AND professionals. They're affordable, awesome quality, cute, and convenient for travel!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Review: The Perfect World by Katalina Gerard

In our world today, we encourage our children to be individuals, embrace their differences, chase their own paths, and explore the world around them. When these freedoms are stripped away, revolution, anarchy, and protest occurs. For the most part, we encourage all of these things because they lead to new discoveries.

However, imagine that your great, great, great grandchildren are born into an opposite world where even their names and occupations and interactions are determined by someone else. Imagine, further, that this distant relative of yours is insatiably curious and desires to know everything about the world around him. Would this be acceptable if it made the world a "perfect" place?

The main character, Cyrus, is in this situation, down to being insanely curious. I feel his pain as he's forced to live in this world, and I feel the triumph and challenges that come with escaping this prison. The book forces the reader to endure several emotional ups and downs and the ending leaves one wanting MORE! I'm really hoping that the author is working diligently on this series, because it has serious classic and movie potential!

GoPure 100% Pure Peppermint Oil

What smells like candy but has aromatherapy properties? GoPure's 100% Pure Peppermint Oil! Duh! :)

I was excited to receive a free sample of this product because I've been very interested in essential oils and their properties! It turns out, Peppermint Oil has quite a few!

Used since ancient Egyptian times, the Peppermint Oil is considered to be the most uplifting of the essential oils. Among it's many uses:

-Easing Motion Sickness/Jet Lag
-Encouraging Concentration
-Easing Stress and Anxiety
-Mood Booster
-Defeats Sadness

This essential oil is clearly one that benefits more mentally than physically. HOWEVER, it DOES have physical uses. As the label on this bottle states that it is suggested for aromatherapy uses, I don't plan to ingest it!

As for GoPure's specific brand, I have to say, I'm impressed! The rubber dropper sucks the oil up easily and efficiently, the label is very professional and easy to read (it's in perfect English and the font is large enough for me!), and the oil itself is VERY strong, which tells me that it's potent and good quality!

Warm and Cozy: Flannel Cotton Sheet Set

If there's one thing I love in the world more than my family, husband, animals, being a teacher, and film photography, it's sleep. It seems like I spend half of my time wishing that I was in bed, down in my blankets. About a year ago, I bought a set of AWESOME Egyptian Cotton sheets and I realized that blankets and sheets make a huge difference in how I sleep. I found it much easier to doze off and get comfortable and STAY asleep.

When I had the opportunity to try a new set of flannel sheets for free, I was PUMPED! I had a set from Wal-Mart when I was in college and I LOVED them to DEATH...literally. I threw them away when they got giant holes in them. I used them year-round, regardless of the temperature. I was excited to try another brand to see if the quality differed any.

When I received my complementary set from L&Z Inc., I immediately put them on the bed. The didn't exactly match my blue color scheme (they're tan), but MAN did they go on easily. I noticed that the sheets were thick, plush, and took on my body heat pretty quickly. The fitted sheet goes on amazingly without coming loose. 

Even my husband, who tends to get really hot at night, approved of the sheets! They feel fantastic, and are very thick and durable (we have washed them several times to ensure that we could accurately report their quality). 

The fold back easily and smooth down nicely. This is awesome considering that thicker sheets tend to wrinkle pretty badly! 

I slept like a baby on these super soft sheets and I LOVE them! I'll definitely be looking for another set to match our bedding!

Get your set here!

Can Any Other Set!: Bellemain Canning Tools

I'm always looking to learn something new. Whether it's an artform, a song, a method of teaching, or how to care for a new animal, I LOVE learning. When presented with the opportunity to review a canning set for free, I jumped at it! Canning is an awesome way to eat healthier (without all of the chemicals), set up a stock of surplus, and a skill that could provide useful should there ever be a food shortage know...the zombie apocalypse!

Canning isn't something that you learn to do flawlessly overnight, so I'll spare the details there! What I'll focus on is the quality of this canning tool set. When I first received the package, I noticed, from looking at the outside of the box, that the tools looked to be made of plastic. I didn't have terribly high hopes.

However, upon opening the box, I was surprised to see that only a few pieces were plastic based and those that were, were EXTREMELY well-made and sturdy. The funnel, bubble popper/measuring stick, and magnetic lid lifter are all plastic-based. The bubble popper is a bit flexible, but that's great because it allows for reaching harder places much easier.

The kit comes with a funnel, standard tongs, a lid remover wrench, a bubble popper measuring stick, a jar lifter, and the magnetic lid lifter.

Besides the pieces mentioned that are made of plastic, the rest are rubber-handled metal tools. The joints of these tools glide smoothly and the handles are very comfortable to hold. They have a fantastic weight in the hand are are super shiny and pretty. The metal places where the tool comes in contact with the jar features grooves, which help in gripping the parts of the jar.

Overall, I'd say that this canning set makes it very easy to learn the process of canning. Having a complete tool set with everything you could need is very essential to not getting frustrated and giving up! Highly suggested! Buy yours here!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Lesser Known Supplement Review: Milk Thistle!

In my product review journey, I've been offered many supplements. As appealing as "free" may seem, I'm very picky about what I will actually ingest as, you know, it's my LIFE! Usually, I will accept fish oil, biotin, calcium, and the like. When offered the opportunity to test a milk thistle supplement for free, I did a little research, and decided that it was something I might want to try.

With any given supplement, there are benefits that one hopes to gain by taking it. In my research, I found that milk thistle is a relative of the daisy, and was mostly used to treat liver issues such as jaundice, hepatitis, and gallbladder issues. Other benefits it had were lowering cholesterol and helping with type 2 diabetes. It is important to realize that there isn't really enough scientific evidence to support these claims. Research is still in the beginning stages.

The main benefit of milk thistle at this point is as an antioxidant. It's basically a liver flush. When you think about all that the liver processes and passes through, it can't hurt to have a little antioxidant. I wouldn't bank on this supplement to reverse liver damage, but a little natural cleansing is definitely not out of the question.

As for VitaPure Products' supplement, I found that the capsules were easy to swallow and didn't stick in my throat. They didn't have an overwhelming odor, the label was written in clear, easy to understand English. It clearly shows the ingredients and the amount. It also provides plenty of contact information for any questions that may arise. Many supplements do not provide this. The label looks professionally designed and graphically sound. The lid was safety sealed to the bottle.

While I have no evidence of actually being detoxed, I'll give it the benefit of the doubt. I had no negative side effects or issues with taking the supplement.

If you're considering this supplement, please research to see if you're part of the audience who should NOT take this supplement. I highly suggest using WebMD when looking for this information.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Essential Oils: What ARE They and What Do They Do?

Something that I've always to try, but haven't really taken the time to research is essential oils. I've heard so many people sing their praises, and my curiosity was peaked. When InstaNaturals (one of my FAVORITE beauty brands) asked me to review their essential oils pair in exchange for a review, I happily agreed! This was a great opportunity to "try it before I buy it", and I was totally game. The first thing I did was research the uses for each. I decided to pick a few uses each for the purpose of my reviews, and slowly, over time, add more uses to my list.

The first oil that I received is my absolute favorite: Lemon! I love how Lemon smells when I clean my house, so I hoped that this oil would have a strong scent. I wasn't disappointed! I read that Lemon essential oil is a good disinfectant, so I mixed it up with water in a spray bottle (it just took a few drops!) and went to town on the counters. It smells amazing, cuts grease, and best yet...if the cats are eating crumbs off of the counter or are laying on it and then groom themselves, I don't have to worry about them eating chemicals! Another use that I decided to try was odor elimination. I used a paper towel, in a small ceramic bowl, and placed it on the windowsill. The oils made the room smell AWESOME for quite a long time! Compared to the investment of gel air freshener cones, essential oils go a LONG way! You can also place a saturated cotton ball in your fridge to help with odors as well!

Next, I had the opportunity to try the Peppermint essential oil. I KNEW this one had arrived before I even opened the box. Instantly, the scent reached my nose. I liked it, but it became VERY strong when I opened the box and took off the plastic wrap. Once the bottle had had time to air out, it went back to "normal" (i.e.: not being able to smell it from three miles away). This oil, I use daily to help wake me up! I put a few drops in the bottom of the shower, and the hot water steams the shower up. It smells AWESOME and I wake up much faster! This may be because Peppermint helps to focus your mind and enhance memory. The scent of Peppermint also curbs appetite, so if you're tempted to snack excessively, this may be a good option! The scent of this oil is awesome! It's much stronger than Peppermint candy, but it also has a more natural, earthy smell that is less sugary.

Overall, I'm really impressed that these oils have so many uses. I'm also impressed with the quality of the bottle and dropper. I haven't had a single issue with it sealing or sucking up the oil like it's supposed to. I've dropped the bottles a few times on hardwood floor, and they've haven't broken, so I think it's safe to say that they're thick, quality glass. The bottles are HUGE, as well. One bottle is about the size of my palm, and I have large hands! You're definitely getting your money's worth with InstaNatural's essential oils, no matter what scent you select!

What oils do you use and what uses have you found for them?

BlockIt RFID Blocking Shield Review!

If you're a traveler, shopper, or even just someone who has a debit/credit card, this one's for you! Recently I was selected to review a product that can make a huge difference when it comes to theft! In exchange for my honest opinion, I received a BlockIt RFID blocking shield to use with my debit card.

If you're not familiar with RFID, it stands for "Radio-frequency identification". This technology is the same that is used for microchipping pets and identifying animals that are being tracked. Essentially, these waves can pick up the data that's stored in the magnetic strip on your credit or debit card. This opens you up not only to a world of hurt when it comes to finances, but to the possibility of identity theft as well.

The BlockIt sleeve is made of high quality, expensive aluminum housed within a thick, decorated, cardstock exterior. There are SO many patterns available, but I selected the pink and grey fleur de lis pattern. It's really cute, and it has an added bonus of helping me to find my debit card when I'm frantically looking for it! I love knowing that my information (and money) is safe! I haven't had it bend, tear, or scratch up and it's been in my wallet for a few weeks now!

I'd highly suggest this if you're traveling, especially!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


SURPRISE, GUYS! THIS IS A FLASH GIVEAWAY. YOU HAVE ONE HOUR TO ENTER THE CONTEST BY COMMENTING BELOW! Tell me the names of your dogs and drop a photo if you'd like (photo not required)! It's that easy! I just want Otis to meet all of your furbabies (online!)! :) You can read my original blog post here if you're wondering what the heck a SafetyPup vest is! Spread the word, and the winner will be announced SOON! I can't wait to see who wins this AWESOME product! Otis is very picky about clothes and he doesn't mind wearing this one at all! Good luck everyone!

Otis Approves! SafetyPup Vest!

Hey, guys!

I've got a review for a pretty awesome product for you, and you should stay tuned, ESPECIALLY if you love free stuff AND your pet!

I was given a FREE SafetyPup vest to review, and I was extremely excited because it's started to warm up, and I'll be taking Otis out more frequently. Otis has used his vest for going outside in the front yard, and since we're on the street and near a main highway, I've LOVED that we were selected to review it! It's honestly a relief knowing that there's an extra safety measure in Otis' potty breaks.

The SafetyPup vest is trimmed in reflective material, so when the light hits it in the dark, it shines silver. The same type of material is found on hunting vests (that could be a use for this vest, too!). Upon taking the vest out of the package, I thought it was a little stiff, but it quickly unfolded with a shake, and fit Otis' form when I put it on him. The most notable features would have to be the material, the design, the stitching, and the Velcro.

The material is thick and water-repellent. He's worn it into the rain (and gotten it really dirty) several times. I just slip it off and throw it into the washer and when it comes out, it looks brand new! The colors are bright, and they've yet to fade! I LOVE the little blue paw print on the side. It takes the vest from boring to adorable. The stitching doesn't look cheap, and it's very even and well-done. As I mentioned, I've washed it after several rough play sessions in the muddy yard, and it hasn't unraveled in the slightest. The same holds true for the Velcro: it doesn't look like it's aged a day, and it still holds as securely as it did when it was brand new.

Part of the reason I've held off on doing this review is that I really wanted to see what would happen to the vest after many washes. I'm so pleased to report that it has passed much better than I expected it to! If you've got working dogs, messy dogs, playful dogs, or even dogs that shed a lot, I'd highly suggest this vest not only for it's safety factor, but for the fact that it can be washed over and over with no negative consequences!

Otis actually loves wearing it, and doesn't take it off! We have a special "SafetyPup song" that I sing now, and he loves it. :) I will be posting a video soon of the reflective qualities!

What do you think? Are you interested in winning your OWN SafetyPup vest?

An Interesting Concept: Strapsnake's Cotton Guitar Strap!

Any time that I have the opportunity to review a product that my family will extensively use, I go for it! Whether it's my husband, myself, or my pets, I love trying something new for free! That's exactly what happened when I saw Strapsnake's Cotton Guitar Strap. At the time, I was very intent on learning acoustic guitar, but found myself at odds on how to hold the thing. Even if I didn't stick with it as religiously as I was (obviously, I've began pursuing other passions for the moment), my husband would use the strap daily.

I've bought him a guitar strap, and our experience with it wasn't great. He performed live with it, and within a few songs, the end of the strap snapped. NOT good. The nylon strap couldn't handle the movement demands that live shows entail.

Upon opening the cotton guitar strap, it was immediately clear that this strap was MUCH more durable than nylon or polypropylene straps. After our experience with the nylon strap, I scoped out the ends of the strap (where it'd connect to the guitar) and was delighted to see that it was leather. For good measure, I gave the strap a pretty violent tug from each end and the strap didn't budge, stretch, or rip. It is extremely well built.

The overall look of the strap is sharp. The strap and the leather are all black and it goes with anything (attire, other band equipment, various guitars).

If you're looking for a way to end shoulder fatigue or a strap that will be WELL worth your investment dollar, look no farther than Strapsnake's Cotton Guitar Strap. You can't beat the quality and durability of this one!