February 2015 Empties!!

Tags

, , , , ,

My boyfriend is moving in soon and I wonder what he’ll think about me saving empty bottles of this and that to write about them once a month lol….I may just start snapping a picture and tossing things, rather than collecting them for one or two group photos.  Such a strange thing to worry about, I know…

For February a lot of products I used up were for dry skin and hair, and I am happy to say my hair has been looking better than usual and my facial skin hasn’t flaked up on my at all this winter!

Here is what I used up, but not everything I’ve been loving this winter (I may do a separate post later about all the items!):

FEbEmpty1empties2

Catwalk by Tigi Your Highness Elevating Conditioner – any conditioner than doesn’t make my hair look worse is good with me.  I actually bought a second huge bottle of this and the matching shampoo, but thank to Birchbox, have found even better products for my hair so I am not sure I’ll be using this again afterall.

Caldrea Rosewater Driftwood – this came in a Popsugar Must Have Box and I loved it so much, I swapped for a second one.  It has a light scent and simply feels good on the skin.

Matrix Biolage Exquisite Oil Shampoo – I have NO idea where I got just a shampoo sample of this, but I do know I LOVE it!  This made my fly always calmer without making my hair super flat.  Usually I don’t notice much difference between shampoos but since this rain out and I am trying out a different one, my hair just isn’t the same.  I’ll be hunting down more of this ASAP!

Urban Decay Anti-Aging Eyeshadow Primer Potion – I am huge fan of UD Primer Potions, just not of the shimmery version, which I had been using prior to this one.  The shimmery version changed the way my eyeshadow looked and it just didn’t seem to hold it as long.  The regular formula and this one work amazing for me!

Davines Oi Shampoo – I couldn’t tell if this shampoo actually made any difference for me, but again, it didn’t make my hair worse.

Davines Oi Conditioner – so far I have used the Oi condition and the Love and really do love both.   I ended up buying the full size of this one because the Love seemed to weight my hair down a bit and this one doesn’t.  Paired with the Matrix Biolage Exquisite Oil, my hair looks the best it has in years!

Vichy Liftactiv Nuit – I used this in the evenings.  Vichy seems to be super moisturizing and I haven’t had any flakiness at all this winter.  Usually I will get itchy aroundmy eyebrows, as weird as that sounds!

Vichy Aqualia Thermal – this may be my winter go-to moisturizer! No dry skin.  No flakiness.  Smells and feels good.  I’m glad I have one more of these deluxe sample sizes to get me through March, then I’ll be switching to something a little lighter I think.

Skintimate Shave Gel – my favorite.  Nothing much else to say :)

Dr. Brandt Pores No More Primer – this was pretty good.  I still prefer Dermalogica’s primer but I would use this if I got it again in a subscription box or something along those lines.

Bain de Terre Color Preserving Shampoo and Conditioner – this was another so-so shampoo and conditioner for me.  After realizing how effective the Davines is for me, the other brands I’m using just don’t compare.

Benefit They’re Real Mascara – another disappointment.  I did use this for a couple weeks before throwing in the towel.  It just seems like these mascaras aren’t sticking to my lashes and with every company making crazy brushes I always end up with mascara in my eyeliner line (drives me CRAZY!) or on my eye lids.

NOT PICTURED:

Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser – technically this is not “empty” but rather up-side-down in my shower in an attempt to get 2-3 more uses out of it.  A little goes a long way.  The smell doesn’t bother me like it did some in reviews I read.  My only complaint is that it doesn’t remove mascara well at all, but to be fair, it doesn’t claim to and actually says not to use near your eyes.  I just prefer a cleanser that does it all, but I’d use this again if I got more.  I’m curious to check out other things from this brand as well.

Gluten Free Valentines Day

Tags

, , ,

valentines

This year Valentine’s Day was spent at home….putting together a crib and dresser, building cardboard box forts, and cooking and baking up a storm, during a storm!  It was a great weekend and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.  My boyfriend and I are planning a dinner out one night in a couple weeks, not only for Valentine’s Day, but simply because our lives have been so hectic we just haven’t had a good date night in a while!  Thankfully we both love cooking, so even though we aren’t getting out much, we still indulge!

He’s 100% gluten free due to an allergy, but he’s not ever gone to be diagnosed with Celiac’s disease so we don’t call it that :)  Our dinner consisted of:

Beef Tenderloin

Coconut Shrimp (my own GF version that is super coco-nutty!)

Sweet Potato Fries

Fresh Green Beans

It was so good…but let’s be honest, dessert is always the best part!  I made my son Williams Sonoma Cupcakes with pink icing and Valentines sprinkles.  They were NOT gluten free, so to help us keep our energy up while he was on his sugar high, I made Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies substituting King Arther’s Gluten Free Flour Blend and adding in xanthan gum.  These were the best looking, best tasting, best consistency gluten free cookies I’ve had yet.  I had read some awesome reviews about King Arther’s and now I can say, there is no turning back.  It’s a bit pricier than some other gluten free flour blends but worth every penny!

<3 Lolo

February 2015 Birchbox Reveal and Review

Tags

, , , , , , , , ,

For this month’s Birchbox I decided to do the pick-your-sample and let them surprise me with the rest rather than pick the curated box.  I wasn’t thrilled about the sample choices this month, but I tend to jump as getting make-up remover because I don’t buy it, therefore, I’m terrible at removing my make-up at night.  BUT…if I have it, I’ll use it.  So needless to say, I chose the Marcelle Gentle Make-Up Remover.

Here is my full box breakdown:

feb2015bb

Marcelle Gentle Make-Up Remover (1.7mL $5.00) – this sample is 1/3 of the full size!  It also has great reviews and I KNOW it’ll work better than nothing or the cleanser I’m using now that doesn’t remove eye make-up very well at all.

BeeKind Body Lotion (30mL $1.88) – this has a strong lemon scent which I would normally hate but this one doesn’t smell as much like Pledge as most lemon scents.  It absorbed fairly well, but I still don’t think I’ll want to smell this for too long.

Juicy Couture Hollywood Royal Perfume  (0.05oz $1.44) – I only sprayed a tiny amount and this is just way too strong for me personally.

Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Cleanser  (0.5oz $1.63) – this item upsets me.  Obviously Birchbox doesn’t look at these surveys we spend a ton of time filling out because even in my teenage years I didn’t really have an acne problem.  This isn’t even getting opened , hopefully I can swap it.

Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner (FULL SIZE $16.00) – I was happy to see this item.  I have been wanting a liquid eyeliner in an everyday color so I’ll be experimenting with this ASAP for sure!

This wasn’t my favorite Birchbox, but I’ll use 2 of the 5 items happily and with these 5 reviews I now have enough points for $40 in the Birchbox store!  My favorite part of Birchbox is definitely the rewards system and I have found some new favorites over the months too!

<3 Lolo

January 2015 EMPTIES!!!

Tags

, , , ,

Goodness it feels like forever since I have written about anything!  We have been so busy with work/school, getting the house ready for a new baby, and a boyfriend, his autistic brother and a dog to all move in soon!  Not to mention, spending our weekends trying to do fun things with my son – snowboarding this weekend!  Well, not me.  I’ll be the spectator, but am super excited for my son to get back at it this winter!

My busy life hasn’t kept me from using up a bunch of stuff though!  Here it is!

janempty

Greenscape Organic Shea Butter Exfoliating Salt Scrub – I got this for a steal at TJ Maxx and it sounded like it would be everything I loved all rolled into once, but maybe I got an old batch?  It smeared on my skin, has no texture to exfoliate and would not rinse off.  I’m glad it’s gone.

Sachajuan Shiny Citrus Body Lotion – this worked really well for me.  The scent didn’t linger long so it doesn’t interfere with perfume if you wear it and kept my winter dry skin feeling soft all day.

Could 9 Miracle Repair Shampoo – this deluxe sample did not come with a conditioner sample.  I’m not one to really be able to judge a shampoo without it’s conditioning counterpart.  To me, this was just like any other shampoo.

Le Couvent des Minimes Gardener’s Hand Healer – works really well for dry skin and seemed to have an herbal scent.  I liked it well enough.

Fresh Life eau de parfum – I do love perfume samples.  I’m a rare one when it comes to that I think.  This was light and good for work.

Lancer Eye Contour Lifting Cream – Lancer’s popularity with celebs was something I just heard about recently.  Good thing or I would have expected miracles.  So while I didn’t notice a drastic change, I did notice that I wasn’t noticing the fine lines around my eyes quite so much.  I have a second bottle of this open now.

Jane Iredale Mascara – before I get into the next two mascaras I will have to admit I have a long loved favorite drug store mascara and nothing seems to compare to it so far, including this which doesn’t even come close.  I felt like nothing was coming off the brush…to the point I thought maybe it had dried up.  So I squeezed the tube (unique design I’ll admit), and about 90% was air, but a glob of mascara appeared.  I dipped the brush directly into the glob and was able to get more off of it but it didn’t do much for my lashes.  Total fail.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – I wanted to love this.  I love this brand and they put out the cutest stuff.  But again, totally a fail for me.  My lashes looked horrible, I ended up with mascara on my eye lids, and after a couple of days I gave up on this and threw it in the empties box.  I have several more samples left to try of different mascaras but really I just wanna break down and go buy my favorite – L’Oreal Carbon Black.

Some wins, some loses, some so-so’s.   A typical month I think.  I am really wishing winter would hurry up and get over it.  I’m longing for spring makeup and scents and some natural glow.  This dry skin and dullness is really sucking the pregnancy glow right out of me!  Next month I should be finishing up some things that were supposed to help  with that….we will see how it all works out then!

<3 Lolo

January 2015 Birchbox Relax & Recharge Review

Tags

, , , , , ,

I can’t believe I got my Birchbox in 3 days flat this time!  And before I can even review my products on the website!  It was a nice surprise on this arctic day.

<3 Lolo

2015/01/img_7335.jpg

I chose the Relax and Recharge box this time for two reason – first, I think I’ll get to review 6 products for points and second, I wanted to try most of the products.  Here is what was included:

Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair!  – I have actually tried this before and it doesn’t work for me, but most hair products don’t.  It is a generous 1oz size sample.

Perlier Intensive Nurturing Body Balm – I haven’t opened this but can smell a lovely lavender scent through the foil.  I love to use lavender scents at night time.  It is also a generous 1oz sample.

Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream – I’m going to look up some reviews on this again.  I think I remember reading before that this is pretty good stuff.  Swatched on my hand, it seems firming and has a strong scent. I just have SO many eye creams to work through!

When Travelmate Sheet Mask – I just love these.  They are easy to use and typically leave your skin feeling super hydrated afterwards.  I rarely have time for masks lately but hopefully things are slowing down I can try some new ones out soon!

Manna Kadar Liplocked Priming Gloss Stain – sounds like a glass that stains??  Looks like a pretty basic easy to wear shade.  It’s a tiny sample, but I like them because I get some kinda weird satisfaction out of using up an entire lip gloss!

BONUS!  Teapigs Tea Samples!  Who can refuse something named Teapigs?  I don’t think I can drink these teas until after my pregnancy though.

I’m always happy when my Birchbox samples are items I don’t want to swap away for other items.  With the exception of the hair mask, I’m keeping it ALL!  Yay! Looking forward to February!

New Year’s Resolutions?

Tags

I am definitely one of those people that will make New Year’s Resolutions and break them within a month or two.  BUT…I really think this year will be different.  With so many changes coming in 2015 for me, I have NO choice but to make some changes!

1.  Get my house organized: with a new baby coming in 5+ months, I definitely won’t have much time to be doing this afterwards, and I am happy to say I have already begun!

2.  Better myself:  I can’t say that I’ll go on a diet or workout more because I’m pregnant, but my goal at the end of this pregnancy is to not let myself go and to make my own health as much a priority as I make my children’s.  It also helps to have a boyfriend who is a bit crazy about being healthy, and he’s moving in soon which means I won’t be eating loads of cookies without anyone else knowing anymore!

3.  Make a budget/financial plan:  this one I can’t start until the boyfriend moves in and I have a better idea of what my/our expenses will be, but getting out of debt and starting a retirement plan weigh heavy on my mind.

4.  Spend more time with my son: no matter how much time I spend with him, I always feel guilty when I have to choose laundry/cleaning/working over a game of Mario Kart or kick ball.  I am hoping the organizing of the home will help free up more time as well!

5.  Blog more…or blog less:  Part of me thinks I should blog more regularly, another part of me realizes it does take away from my everyday life.  Do strangers really care that much to actually read what I write, or do they simply hit the “like” button in hopes I’ll return the favor or follow them?  I blog more as a release, but I’m not sure that I will even be able to keep up much after this little boy enters our world, or if I’ll even want to.  A decision I will make by June, I am sure.

<3 Lolo

December 2014 Empties!

Tags

, , , ,

Another month, another list of empty stuff I can review!

decempties

John Frieda Luxurious Volume Touchably Full Shampoo – ehh this was ok.  I was able to use the entire bottle without feeling my hair was looking worse, like some shampoos will do to me.  I wouldn’t buy it again though since it didn’t seem to improve my hair at all.

Bath and Body Works Stress Relief Eucalyptus Spearmint Body Wash and Body Foam – I actually got this as part of a gift last year. Unfortunately the scent was not for me, as the formula irritated my skin, as a lot of Bath and Body Works products do.  I eventually had to stop using it and will discard the rest.

Dial Coconut Water Soap – this is what I switched to to try to get my irritation from the body wash to calm down.  I won’t be posting every time I use a bar of plain ole soap though.  It does smell good!

Davines LOVE Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner – so far this is probably my favorite shampoo/condition duo I have used in a long time!  I’m saving my Birchbox points for full size of at least the conditioner.  My only complaint might be that it made my hair too soft and it was hair to get bobby pins to stay it – for me, that screams success!

Jergens BB Body Lotion – I have had samples of this before and I do like it a lot, besides the weird flesh color of it.  It works well and smells nice.  I am not sure it improves the overall look of skin though.

Real Chemistry Luminous 3 Minute Peel – this is one of those peels you actually put all over and then rub off and it comes off in little balls.  I didn’t really see too much improvement from this though.

Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels – I just love these types of things.  I like how they feel on and I like the way my skin feels smoother afterwards.

Dermalogica Daily Microexfoliant – this is one of my regular scrubs since these deluxe samples come with this sample kits I buy frequently off of Ebay (mostly for the primer that I love).  It’s gentle and effective.

Vichy Aqualia Thermal and Vichy Liftactiv Nuit lotions – this stuff is quite possibly saving my skin this winter.  I have yet to get dry flaky patches anywhere.  I have a bunch of these samples so hoping they last through this winter!

Harvey Prince Hello – I love this perfume.  This is my second sample vial.  I would buy the full size if I didn’t already have a ton of perfume to use up first.  It’s definitely on my favorites list though!

Malin + Goetz Mojito Lip Balm – it’s always a success story if I manage to not only keep from losing a lip balm, but to also use up an entire tube!  I barely noticed the flavor of this on, but it makes your lips feel smooth and just a tad shiny.

Overall, another good amount of stuff used up.  Still so much to work my way through..

<3 Lolo

Review: Habit Nail Polish in Nefertiti

Habit is a beauty brand that was completely new to me when I bought the Popsugar Holiday LE box this month.

The color Nefertiti just looked so pretty online so I was excited to try it out. It is described as a mocha creme with copper shimmer.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7242-0.jpg

Habit’s polishes are 5 free, cruelty free, vegan and gluten free. They are naturally strengthening with Myrrh extract.

It took two coats to get full coverage. It’s a beautiful neutral shade. Without a top coat it has lasted through 2 busy work days (in a dental office where we wash A LOT) and 6 days total with only some polish wearing off the edges.

I’m definitely a fan of the brand and formula. Looking forward to trying more shades soon!

Merry Christmas!
<3 Lolo

December 2014 Popsugar Reveal and Review

I actually got two December boxes because I was first sucked in with a coupon code and then got one free with the purchase of the Holiday Limited Edition Box.

Here is what came!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7200-0.jpg

Williams Sonoma Cupcake Mix – ummm yes!! Just need to get some icing! I’m guessing these are amazing!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7204.jpg

Gift Tags – not exciting, but useful!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7205.jpg

Smashbox Lip Gloss – I have yet to try this. It’s a really dark red and I have thin lips. A little intimidating but I love this brand!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7202.jpg

Ceramic Bowl – about the size of a grapefruit. It’s small than I expected but I love it and am happy to have two but have yet to decide what I’ll use them for.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7206.jpg

The Scarf! – I loooove this scarf. I’ve worn it just about everyday and have gotten several compliments. It’s super light and super soft. Easy to wear!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/52b/57859475/files/2014/12/img_7207.jpg

Williams Sonoma Vanilla Bean Cupcake Mix: $14.95
Knot&Bow Parcel Tags: $4.00
Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer: $24.00
Canvas Dauville Platinum Bowl: $29.00
Sparklepop Sydney Necklace: $42.00
SPUN by Subtle Luxury Speckled Metallic Scarf: $62.00

I love this box! The $175.95 value was definitely worth the $30 I paid (the second box was free with the purchase of the LE Holiday!).

Hoping the next few don’t wow me and drain my bank account!

<3 Lolo

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 153 other followers