Date Night at Saks Off 5th



GG and I went out for dinner tonight and then over to the new Saks Off 5th that just opened. Now I have a very important question: can I remove these long tassels (they’re barely tassels, just leather strings) attached to every zipper of this otherwise awesome bag? I know they will get tangled, stepped on, and are begging to be chewed up by cats!

Also picked up these cute suede flats I am calling “elf shoes” because there is just something about them, I don’t know if it’s the length of the point or how low the sides are cut or something? They’re really comfy and a great price, and GG said they didn’t look like elves, so maybe it’s just me…

Vlog and Tote Purse Organization




I’m a vlogger now! Follow me around a little, and see how I organize my big ol’ tote purse, the Thirty-One Around Town Tote. (Also featured: the Swap It Pocket purse organizer, seriously one of the best purse organizers I’ve ever used, and I’m a collector!)

Evereve Trendsend 2

As a little reward to myself for recently dropping a few pounds, I decided to try another Evereve Trendsend box. I’d only done it once before, but was very pleased with their thoughtfulness and service. The pieces are a little pricey, but it’s nice to treat yourself (and I wear those 7 For All Mankind pants all the time!). For this box, I mentioned a couple work events and a trip coming up, and also said I was ready to wear a little bit more fitted pieces instead of the loose tunic type things I’ve been wearing lately. In response, Heidi R sent me three outfits, which may or may not have met my requests…

Outfit One: This combination was very strange; individually I liked both pieces, but I don’t think I would have ever paired this kind of preppy looking, light shift dress with this brown, slightly western-ish, heavy-ish moto jacket…



Allison Joy Tie Neck Shift Dress – $29.99
I liked this dress, but it had a few strikes against it: 1) as a shift dress with no stretch and no waist definition, it had the “tent” effect (i.e. it comes out as far as the farthest point of my chest, and then falls straight down, making me look larger than I am); 2) I’m not really into tie necks, I never know how to tie them and generally think they look goofy (at least on me); 3) not fully sold on the orange and pink parts of the design. Maybe if I had some kind of summertime dress wearing event on the horizon I would have kept it, but with those strikes against it, I took it off the maybe pile and onto the return pile. (To be fair, I thought it was $55 according to the tag, which may have influenced my opinion as well. According to the web site, it was marked down from $68.) [Edit: 4/2] After rethinking this one and considering the price, I’ve decided to keep! [/Edit]

BB Dakota Allerton Suede Jacket – $89.99
When I peeked at my box before receiving it, I saw this very cool brown suede jacket. However, I have cut all brown and tan out of my life, and only wear black and gray. It just makes things so much easier. So had this jacket been black or gray I would have absolutely kept it because it fits nicely, it’s so comfy and soft, and I love the asymmetrical zipper. Return. (Marked down from $108.)

Outfit Two: If I thought the previous outfit was strange, this one knocked it out of the park. The leggings and jacket were very heavy and structured to wear with the light and gauzy dress.



Lysse Mara Legging – $39.99
I was excited to see these were coming, because I think they are an Evereve fan favorite! They’re a really thick ponte knit, with decorative seams down the front and back of each leg. I already have a pair of ponte leggings I like, but I think these are a little nicer (and cheaper!). Keeping! (Marked down from $78.)

Beloved Classic Cami – $28
Heidi sent me this plain black cami to layer under the dress, which has an open back. However, as if I didn’t already have enough plain black camis, I wear Ruby Ribbon camis pretty much exclusively now. Although the fabric is nice and it’s seamless, it’s a really expensive plain black cami… Return.

BB Dakota Nicholson Faux Suede Jacket – $79.99
I had mixed feelings when I saw this was coming – I liked that it was black, and I was excited for another suede jacket option (since I knew I wouldn’t be keeping the brown one), but I wasn’t sure about the kind of unstructured, flyaway design. When I put it on, I was even more confused, because the inside sides of the sleeves are not suede but a knit. However, it grew on me. After revisiting a couple times, I decided to keep. (Marked down from $98.)

Free People Beaux Slip – $39.99
No no no. I pretty much hate everything about this. The neck comes up so high on my throat. The back is wide open (hence the need for the cami underneath). I do not like the flowy, hippie-ish style. And it just did not work with the heavy jacket and structured pants. Just for fun, I tried the outfit with my own shirt, and I liked it much better! (It’s what convinced me to keep the other two pieces.) But this was a return. (Marked down from $88.)

Outfit Three: Heidi recommended pairing the two pieces in this outfit with the black suede jacket above, as well as wearing the top with white denim, which I’m sure would look beautiful in the summer but which I would surely destroy!



Allison Joy Maribel Lace Up Tank – $48
I was worried when I saw this coming because I’m not really into this new strappy/tie neck thing I’m seeing more and more on tops. But, as Heidi said in her message, it does include all my favorite blue and turquoise colors! And GG got more of a ren faire vibe from the lace up neck. It fits really nicely, the fabric has a nice stretch to it, and I need more patterned pieces in my life, so I decided to keep it, despite the high price.

Sanctuary Essential City Peg Ankle Pant – $89.99
Jeez, how many pairs of black pants do I need?! ;) Well, I asked for a straight leg pant, I can always use these for work. They’re skinny, but don’t look like skintight leggings. They have a little black leather trim on the front pockets, which is a nice touch. The price was high, but comparable to what they seem to sell for on other sites, and they have great reviews around the internet. Keeping! (Marked down from $99.)

So there we have it: four five hits, four three misses. To complete your order, you check out online and indicate which pieces you’re keeping, and you’ll be charged at that time. Anything you’re not keeping goes into a pre-paid bag to be shipped back to Evereve. There isn’t a styling fee or any other charge, you just pay for the pieces you keep. There’s no incentive or discount for keeping everything they send, so you don’t feel obligated to keep something you don’t like just for a discount on the rest. I did notice they seem to be scaling back just a little bit on the materials they send – last time the letter from my stylist came on letterhead printed with a color logo, and this time it was just a black and white photocopy. Also, the prepaid shipping bag came with a second copy of the packing slip in it, as is requested for returns; this time, there was only one packing slip so I’ll have to send my copy back with my returns. Just little things, but I noticed. All the clothing was still wrapped with tissue paper and a sticker around each outfit, and overall the experience was quick, personal, and fun!

Beauty Reviews – Summer 2016

  • Lush “Brazilliant” Shampoo Bar: I’ve tried shopping at Lush before and I just can’t. We have one in our mall and I go in and the scents just overwhelm me and give me a headache. I wonder if they haven’t actually done something about their ventilation system, because when I went to check out the shampoo bars a couple weeks ago based on a friend’s recommendation, I felt for once like I could breathe in there. I spoke to the sales associate and asked her which shampoo bar she would recommend for my hair: fine and frizzy, so I need something to make it sleek, but not weigh it down too much. She had a couple recommendations, but I ended up with Brazilliant, which has clarifying citrus and sweet orange oil for smoothness. It also smells amazing. I still use my regular conditioner and stuff, but my hair has been so soft since I’ve been using it, with really full volume!
  • Posh Rubby Scrubby: I’ve been trying a couple Posh products lately since a friend started selling it. This is one of my favorites – it’s a minty foot scrub in a handy tube you can easily use in the shower. I am obsessed with foot scrubs… If you don’t have a Posh lady, let me know and I’ll hook you up with mine ;o)
  • IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Powder: A while ago my mom was raving about the IT Cosmetics eyebrow pencil and even gave me one. It’s ok, but not my favorite (I prefer a little bit softer pencil). That was my only experience with the brand until I was watching QVC one night and saw a demo of this “Bye Bye Pores Silk Finishing Powder.” The actual product I purchased is no longer online; it’s a loose powder, not pressed, and came paired with a nice fluffy brush. I am liking it, especially for summer. It really does give you a nice finish! The loose powder is very light and leaves a little cloud in the air, which I could do without, so I might try the pressed powder version next time. On the program, they said the brush was so popular, beauty bloggers were naming theirs? I don’t know about that, but it’s nice…
  • Baby Foot Exfoliating Peel: Remember how I said I was obsessed with foot scrubs? So why not try the ultimate foot softener that’s been making the rounds on social media? You’ll find lots of variations of these, but basically they’re all pre-filled plastic booties you wear for an hour or so to give an acid peel to your feet. After a few days of nothing happening, you’ll be treated to a few fun-filled days of peeling sheets of skin off your feet, followed by baby soft goodness. I feel like there are several stages to using one of these:
    1. The waiting period – After applying the peel, you wait around looking for any signs that your feet are starting to peel. This can last a couple days to a week.
    2. The bottom peeling period – You’re not supposed to pick at it, but once your feet do start peeling, you kind of have to pull the dead skin off or you’ll end up with flaps hanging off and leave a skin trail everywhere. You’re supposed to soak your feet daily to help encourage this process. My friend MB invited me to swim in her pool a few days after the treatment, and woah did that accelerate things! It’s gross and fun and you’ll end up collecting piles of skin as you idly pull it off your feet.
    3. The top peeling period – The bottoms of your feet are so smooth and you think you’re done, but then the tops start peeling! For me this was not as much fun as the bottom because it didn’t really come off in sheets, it just flaked and looked like I had a bad sunburn, which I hope is what most people thought as well, since you can’t really hide the tops of your feet as well as the bottoms. If I do this again, I will try to limit the amount of solution that gets on the tops of my feet, and just try to focus on the soles.
    4. The soft period – The peel won’t necessarily remove callouses but it will make them softer, so enjoy that time before everything gets gross again.

    It really does work and my feet are super soft, especially considering it’s the middle of summer and I’ve been living in sandals and no socks for months. I definitely recommend doing this just before sandal season starts, so your peeling feet are hidden. Also, they say it won’t affect nail polish but the one I used at least did wear a couple spots in mine (I just added another coat on top) so beware if you’re about to get a pedicure or something. And I think it did something to actually make the color soak into my nails more, because when I removed it a couple weeks later, all my toenails were stained (which has not happened before). Maybe just do the peel when your toenails are naked.

Tieks!

I’ve been following Tieks for a few years now, probably ever since they came out with their gray felt model, which are gorgeous but were out of my usual price range for shoes. However, many of the women who are involved with the same business as me love their Tieks, own multiple pairs in every color, and rave about the customer service. Looking online, basically nobody has anything bad to say about them. There are reviews from women who wear them to travel all over, even on trips to Disney World. (Ok, for the record, there are some negative reviews if you search for them. But 99% of what you’ll find is extremely positive about every aspect of the product and company.) So with my favorite black leather flats* long since worn out, I decided to invest in what seems to be most people’s “starter” pair of Tieks, Matte Black.

Just a little background, if you’re not familiar with these shoes: they are known for being super comfortable, incredibly well made, come in a million colors and patterns, have pretty turquoise soles, and can fold in half in their own little bag so you can take them with you and switch them out when your heels get too uncomfortable. Oprah swears by them. Their customer service is said to be top notch, and they include a hand written note with every order.

So I placed my order on a Thursday morning, and expected to be walking on clouds by the following week. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a shipping notification by lunchtime the same day, and they were actually scheduled to arrive on Saturday! They arrived on time, all the way from California. As I had been expecting, they came folded in half inside a little cube-shaped box, topped with a big green flower decoration. I’d included a note at check-out saying that I was excited to try them after the rave reviews from the ladies in my biz. A hand written note was included in my package, but it was just a general, “Hope you love your black Tieks” message, it didn’t reference anything I’d written to them.

First thoughts upon putting them on: they were immediately comfortable, except they were so tight across the tops of my toes, and my big toes were noticeably visible. If someone told me I had to put them on and wear them somewhere right then, I would have done it and probably been fine. I wore them around the house with socks on for the morning, just to break them in a little and protect myself from blisters. But when I took them off, my feet hurt! Although the whole body of the shoe felt great, it was very tight over my big toes, to the point where they almost felt numb! And even though I’d just been sitting most of the time I had them on, the bottoms of my feet hurt like I’d been standing around. I even asked about this on Instagram, and some of the Tieks fans recommended that I try sizing up, which seems excessive, given that the rest of the shoe fits fine, and I knew they would stretch some as well. Others recommended that I just continue wearing thick socks to break them in, so I wore them all evening with the fattest, fluffiest socks I own. They were starting to feel better by the time I went to bed, though it seemed silly to have to put that much effort into breaking in such expensive shoes… (Some reviews I read mentioned having to break them in for 2-6 months!)

I e-mailed Tieks customer service and they wrote back within a couple hours, and I had a nice exchange with CS rep Erin. We determined that the length of the shoe was fine and I probably just had to wear them a little more (she hadn’t heard of it taking months, but sometimes several wears). She offered to send me the next larger size so I could compare them both, but actually by that night I could already tell that they had loosened some and were a little more comfortable, so I declined.

Thinking I was off on the right foot (pun intended), I started making my wish list for my next pair… Feather Grey, Cobalt Blue, Metallic Pewter, Silver Lake, Lilac, Tiek Blue Patent… However, even after a couple weeks of wearing with socks, they still weren’t super comfy in bare feet. Plus, some of the stitching on the inside of the sole seemed a little loose in the area where they folded, and that made me wonder about quality. I’d wanted to bring these shoes with me when I traveled to California for my conference, but I just couldn’t imagine taking them. So, back they went, and I bought an emergency pair of new shoes.** (Luckily I’d never worn them outside the house, because I heard once you’ve worn them out, they’re no longer returnable.) I requested a return address label, which Tieks sent via e-mail, they were picked up by the mailman, and I received my refund in just a couple days, no hassle.

* I love these Nine West “Blustery” flats… They are so comfy, super cute, great shape. I had 3 pairs. One I never wore so I sold them. The black leather ones I wore holes in the heels within just a couple months, so they look like trash, but I still wear them. I also have a fabric pair that I wear quite a lot that has held up really well.

** And what emergency shoes did I panic and pick up? A pair of black Gigi Point Flats by Christian Siriano for Payless. I love Payless, I’m always so pleased with everything I get there! These were cute, sophisticated, and comfy for a long day of walking and standing around.

Photo: Tieks Instagram

Evereve Trendsend

The same ladies who encouraged me to try Stitch Fix again also turned me on to Trendsend. This is a service provided by a store called Evereve, which I’d never heard of – there’s none in my area. They primarily cater to moms, with the slogan, “Take care of your family, we’ll take care of your fashion.” Like Stitch Fix, there is a $20 styling fee, which is applied to any items that you purchase. You can order just one box, or schedule them every 1-3 months. Unlike Stitch Fix, they send many pieces (I got nine in this first box; a blogger I saw got twelve!), grouped into outfits. Also unlike SF, they actually read your style profile and research their customers! I was literally almost in tears of happiness as I read the very personal comments my stylist made about each piece she carefully selected for me, keeping my needs, personal style, and lifestyle in mind! Prices are comparable to Stitch Fix (and you can specify a price range in your profile), although you can also tell them to pull from Evereve’s sale section. Not every piece was a winner, but I’m definitely keeping a few and will definitely use Trendsend again and recommend it to anyone!

Outfit One:



Flyaway Horn and Stone Double Tier Necklace – $9.99
Not pictured above because the clasp broke off from both ends of the chain literally as soon as I touched it! I liked the style of the necklace, but almost didn’t trust it to even try again :o/ But then I took a closer look and saw how it broke, and was able to fix it with a little pair of pliers (my jewelrymaking class experience coming back!). So I will be keeping after all :o) I’m wearing it in the next outfit picture. (Marked down from $28)

Bobi LS Scoop Neck Tunic Tee – $19.99
The fabric on this was a little thin and the scoop neck a little low, plus I have literally an entire drawer of solid color long sleeve shirts (as noted in the letter from my stylist, “Your blog was filled with lots of solid colored .. tops”). Also not loving this rust color. I could get more of my favorite Merona ones at Target for less than $20. Return.

Under Skies Sleeveless Blazer – $24.99
Isn’t a sleeveless blazer actually… a vest? I guess this is a neat piece and it’s certainly outside my usual box, but when I layer it’s for warmth, and I don’t want a layer without sleeves. Is that weird? Also, not feeling the navy… Return. (Marked down from $58)

7 For All Mankind HW Ponte Skinny – $79.99
Love these pants! They are the work-appropriate black skinny pants I’ve been looking for! They fit great, have great stretch, and are definitely pants (not leggings). They’re not cheap, but the price seems reasonable for a good pair of pants. Keeping!

Outfit Two:



Allison Joy Cozy Soft Stripe Tunic – $68
I will first say, these two items do not go together at all (hence confused look above!). Why would you wear this long tunic under this cropped jacket? This tunic is way more expensive than I would like for this type of thing. However, it’s super soft and warm, the length is great, and I love the stripe for pattern mixing! So… keeping!

Allison Joy Alexa Rouched Sleeve Jacket – $98
I have a very similar jacket (darker gray) to this that I got from Stitch Fix, but the difference is that I can’t get that one buttoned, and this one I can :o) But it’s so similar, I’m not in love with the very light heathered gray, and I can’t see spending $100 on it :o( Return.

An Extra Top and Adorable Tunic Dress:



Braeve Free Spirit Sublimation Tunic – $24.99
Stitch Fix seems to have a problem understanding that some women have larger chests than others, so I love that the stylist specifically said, “This top is perfect for your busty figure!” I also appreciate that this was pulled from the sale rack ;o) (marked down from $58). The knit is very soft, almost like a chenille. However, it’s kind of weird, with thicker and thinner spots; I don’t love the cream color or the pattern; not sure the flare at hips is flattering; the sleeves are an odd length; and there’s a weird kind of diagonal seam on the front that goes right across the middle of my chest. Return.

Hourglass Lily Ikat Tunic Dress – $58
I like the idea behind this, and that the stylist took note of my love of leggings and send this for me to pair it with (wearing above with my own black leggings). I love the black/white/gray ikat print. However, the body is a little clingy in the stomach and hips, neckline is a little high, and I’m not a huge fan of the poofy sleeves with the elastic cuffs… Honestly, if the cuffs weren’t elastic I probably could overlook any other flaws, but there were too many things I don’t like about it, so, return.

Unlike Stitch Fix, there is no discount or other benefit to keeping all the pieces you were sent, so you don’t feel obligated to keep things you really don’t want. One other neat aspect is that when you check out, in addition to leaving feedback on each piece, you can also link to their online store and see if it’s available in any other sizes or colors (there really weren’t other options for the pieces I liked, if they were even still available in the store at all). You actually aren’t charged until you send back your package and they see what’s there and what you kept, which is a little odd; I did notice a copy of the packing slip is included in the return bag, so they can confirm.

As I mentioned, I am mostly super impressed by how much care and attention the stylists give their customers! I love the pieces I kept and will definitely give Trendsend a try again when I want to refresh my wardrobe a little :o)

21 Day Fix – Thoughts on Day 12

I have a number of friends who’ve had very good results with the Beachbody 21 Day Fix program. Now, you know exercise and physical activity is really not my thing, and my love of bacon and cheese prevents me from dieting, but I’d gotten to the point where I was avoiding wearing some types of clothing, and I only liked being photographed from certain angles, so I figured I would give it a shot. There were lots of impressive before and after photos, so I figured if I lost just 5 lbs. I’d be happy. I’m on day 12 right now, and have already surpassed that goal! Plus, I’ve definitely noticed physical changes already! Like, I put on jeans the other day and they just slid right up and buttoned shut :o)

The program consists of three weeks of healthy eating, plus a daily 30 minute workout. Of course I know what’s good to eat, but the trick is that you get color coded containers in varying sizes that help you control your portions. That visualization is really helpful! You also get a booklet that explains the eating plan and gives lists of what you can eat and recipe ideas, but honestly I was so overwhelmed the first couple days. I actually planned my daily meals a few days before starting the program, but once I started, I ended up shifting things around. Again, being visual, I created a color coded Google Sheet where I could list out my daily meals and snacks, and tally up the number of containers at the end of each day.

The workouts are really not horrible, even for someone like me who does not do stuff like this. All you need for any of them are two sizes of hand weights and a yoga mat. Or you could use a resistance band instead of weights, and they have someone in each video to demonstrate how to do that. Each of the daily workouts focuses on a different area: total body, upper, lower, cardio, pilates (probably my favorite), “Dirty 30” (surprisingly my second favorite), and yoga. There’s also a bonus plyo DVD which makes my knees sore just thinking about it. And an extra 10 minute abs workout you can add on to any of the other days. I just get up and do them first thing in the morning, and then I’m done for the day. There is a lovely woman named Kat who appears in every workout and demonstrates the alternate moves, if you’re not quite ready to go full force with all the moves yet.

For me, the eating really hasn’t been a challenge. I already cook and prepare a lot of our food, and besides my generous use of cheese, I already am making a lot of vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains. Although we eat out a lot as well, it’s not like we’re having fast food every day (or very often at all). So the difference is really just portion size, and making sure I get the right proportion of veggies and protein vs. fruit, carbs, fat, etc. I’m actually making a lot of the same recipes I would have made before, just the portion is different, or maybe I’m swapping white rice for cauliflower “rice.” So the menu isn’t a problem for me. It’s really all about planning and making sure you have those ingredients prepped and that you know what you’re going to be eating that week. Some people prepare a week’s worth of meals in advance, and I just can’t do that – I don’t want to eat the same thing every day, nor do I want to be eating 5 day old leftovers by Friday. But I will generally prepare enough of a meal to split into 2-3 portions and have for a couple meals.

If you’re going to eat out, there’s even equivalents in the eating plan book for things like pizza, sushi, and burritos. (I haven’t had to do it yet, but the next time I go out to lunch with my coworkers, I have my Qdoba burrito bowl order all planned out!) If you need alcohol to have a good time, you can replace one serving of carbs with one glass of wine three days a week.

Challenges: At the end of week 1, I got hit with a wicked cold. I had to pause the next couple workouts a few times because I couldn’t breathe or had to take a coughing break, but I never missed a day. That same weekend, we got a blizzard with over 2 feet of snow. Everyone on Facebook was posting pictures of the comfort foods they were making while they were snowed in: chili, cookies, etc. I was stuck in the house with my vegetables and didn’t really feel like eating a salad. I did end up making a veggie fried rice with cauliflower rice which actually was pretty good. And the next week I got ingredients to make a 21DF friendly veggie and turkey chili.

So overall, my totally unbiased review is that the program is worth it and I am definitely pleased with the results so far. You can do multiple “rounds,” but I think after my 21 days are up I’m going to take a little break at least from doing it 100%. I will probably continue the workouts, and the lessons I’ve learned just about how to visualize portions will definitely stick with me. Stay tuned, because I also want to do an in-depth review of some of my favorite participants in the videos ;o)

My Fourth Stitch Fix

Just about two years after the first one, I’ve decided to give Stitch Fix another try! A group I’m in on Facebook has really been raving about SF and similar services, and I figured they’ve had some time to get their act together since the last time I tried them, so I’d give them a shot. I asked for two things: longer tops I could wear with leggings (possibly with lace or crochet), and a poncho with any length sleeves. Well … No modeling photos, because I’m lazy, but here are the results:

Market & Spruce “Chaimbers Cowl Neck Knit Top” – $48
This is a loose, 3/4 sleeve gray sweater with a small cowl neck that seems to hang pretty nicely. It fits well, although it doesn’t really have coverage for leggings. It’s a nice soft knit, but do I need yet another 3/4 sleeve gray sweater? Do I $50 need it? Sigh, I’ll probably keep it.


photo

RD Style “Honay Cowl Neck Poncho Pullover Sweater” – $78
This poncho is crazy. I know I asked for any length sleeve, but this is literally a knit bag with 3 holes for your head and arms. And a kangaroo pocket. Hope you like keeping your arms at your sides, because you can’t raise them! It’s just sloppy looking, even the yarn it’s knit from looks disorganized. Return.


photo

19 Cooper “Clemency Split Neck Tunic” – $68
Well I asked for a tunic, so… This one actually has kind of a neat black and white pattern that only slightly hurts my eyes. It is so long though! I guess I should specify in my style profile that I am like 90% legs and 10% torso. It really looked redonk on me, and also I hate tab sleeves. Return.


photo

Loveappella “Febe Crochet Detail Knit Top” – $48
This is a stretchy short-sleeved black top with crochet running from the neck down the sleeves, and a split shoulder. I loved it the moment I put it on, despite the fact that it also isn’t really long enough to wear with leggings! And I probably wouldn’t bother wearing it in cold weather, because that pretty lace will get covered up. I could definitely wear it out in the summer, though! Keep!


photo

Rune “Porter Legging” – $38
I did not ask for leggings. I asked for things I could wear with leggings. What is this?? (I couldn’t even pull them over my hips, anyway.) Return.


photo

FabFitFun Fall 2015 Box

Once again, FabFitFun has put together a really nice box! This is probably my favorite one yet, with the most items that I will really use! Even the box itself was cute and fun, with a pretty purple raindrop design by illustrator Kelsey Oseid.

  • Gold Radiance Luxury Facial Mask with Collagen and Rose Oil by Passport to Beauty: This is a gold full-face mask treatment that actually looks terrifying, based on the photos on the box… $65 value
  • FabFitFun x Tappan Collective Umbrella: Cute umbrella that says “rain rain go away” in a pattern of raindrops. Mine is white text on a black umbrella, which will be really fun for rainy days. $32 value
  • Lucky Lip Stain by Manna Kadar Cosmetics: As has seemed to be the case with the lip products in these things, I wasn’t super impressed by the color or other special properties it was supposed to have (primer, gloss, and stain in one). Nice texture though, and left my lips feeling moisturized. $24 value
  • 3D White Brilliance 2-Step System by Crest: Despite the photo of the full-size product in the booklet that came in the box, this is just a single use sample pack. I’m kind of nervous about tooth whiteners, so may or may not try this one. (“Sponsored,” aka free)
  • Flawless Skin Fluid by Doctor D. Schwab: I was excited to try this lightweight moisturizer. It’s supposed to even and brighten skin tone – a full-size tube! It definitely is light, and has almost a pearly finish to it. I guess if you’re not going to wear makeup on top of it, that will give you the “brightening” effect. $39 value
  • Purple Purse Charm by Allstate Foundation Purple Purse: I really liked this one. It’s a nice purple leather tassel with a little metal charm, sponsored by the Allstate Foundation Purple Purse to support Domestic Violence Awareness month.
  • HISY Battery Pack: A portable battery charger. Looks like there were a few colors available, mine is a light mint green. It’s small and sleek, and charged my phone 20-some percent pretty quickly, even while I was using it. I will have to see how well it holds a charge. $24.99 value
  • Strength Tubing Ankle & Total Body Tone with Tubing: Lower Body & Core DVD by Merrithew: This is a lower body workout DVD with some kind of resistance band thing. I’ve been wanting to try something like this, so excited to check it out! $33 value
  • Glass Crystal Bead Bracelet by Tribe Alive: Delicate little bracelet with light blue crystal beads and gold chain. I have a similar bracelet but half of it is adjustable cord, so this one is a little different. These little bracelets are great for layering with other pieces or wearing casually, and Tribe Alive apparently works with impoverished women to give them jobs and fair wages. These were created by women in Honduras. $49 value
  • Gift Card by Jeweler’s Wife: This is a $15 gift card to a site that sells jewelry from popular designers like Pandora and Alex and Ani, which of course I can’t wear ;o) May be a gift to someone…
  • Gift Card by Picture It On Canvas: I’ve been wanting to create a gallery wall and maybe include some photos printed on canvas, so I could give this service a try. They do other things besides canvas, too (like posters, phone cases, etc.). $75 value

The FabFitFun Fall 2015 box contains over $357 in product, and can be yours for only $50 – $40 if you use my code! If you have an extra few bucks a quarter that you were probably going to end up spending at Target anyway, why not treat yourself to a fun surprise? ;o)
Photo borrowed from Subscription Box Ramblings – check out her post for tons more pictures!

FabFitFun Summer 2015 Box

I will start off by saying, I purchased the Spring box after finding out what was in it and deciding I wanted it, and ended up disappointed with about 1/3 of it. Once I was in, I saw that I would be getting the Summer one automatically and decided to just go with it anyway, sight unseen. I love everything in this box! I’m so glad I kept the subscription! If you find this post helpful and choose to join, I’d be honored if you used my referral code for $10 off!

  • Wren 14Kt Gold and Black Sapphire Necklace: I received a small rose gold heart with a tiny black sapphire embedded in it. I didn’t know what this was going to be, but it’s so cute! Even though I’m selling my own necklaces and wear them 101% of the time, I had to wear this one to work the very next day! (Bonus – it would look great layered.) Love it, as I’m kind of obsessed with rose gold right now :o)
  • The Everyday Wireless Speaker by FabFitFun: I haven’t tried using this yet, but mine is hot pink. You can either plug in your audio source, or pair it wirelessly with your phone (it also has a microphone so you can use it as a speakerphone). It has an FM radio, and a carabiner clip so you can hang it from your beach umbrella or wherever…
  • Inkling Scents Sultry Roll-On Oil Perfume: When I first opened my box, something smelled really good. Turns out it was this perfume, which wasn’t very tightly sealed (and I see other people’s bottles leaked all over their boxes). It smells nice, and the small roller bottle would be great for travel, I’m just not sure the scent lasts that long…
  • Gorge “I’ll Make You Look Amazing” Daily Spray: Very excited for this spray, which claims to be a leave-in conditioner that offers heat protection, among other things. It has a really nice lemon/coconut scent, that dissipates pretty quickly. I sprayed a few squirts into my hands, and then ran them through my hair, to make sure it got where I wanted. So far, so good!
  • Tarte LipSurgence Lip Gloss: I think FFF released a preview of this and I was looking forward to it, but honestly this was probably one of my least favorite things in the box. I just do not like the texture of this gloss. It claims to have “plumping” properties, but I didn’t really notice any change there, either.
  • FabFitFun x CosmoBody Jump Rope: This hot pink rubber jump rope has really nice, cushy handles, and if I had ever in my life been able to successfully jump rope, I would have been very excited to get it. However, I’m just not that coordinated, so I gave it to GG – the pink color will inspire him to man up and work out.
  • Scratch Nail Wraps: You know I’ve been trying all kind of nail wraps lately!! Per the package, “Scratch is an LA based company that works with artists to create unique nail wrap designs.” These are a white nail wrap with different patterns of pink triangles on them – kind of ’80s retro, and perfect for summer. There are eight different sizes, and like the Sally Hansen wraps, they come in a sealed package and must be used within one month of opening. A small orange stick and nail file were also included. I will report back on these!
  • Headspace 3-Month Subscription: Probably won’t use this, but it’s a card to redeem for three free months of an app called Headspace that guides you through a series of meditations. Gwyneth Paltrow uses it, sooo…
  • Hello Konjac Cleansing Sponge: This is a little white half-sphere sponge. You run it under water to soften it, then use it to wash your face, with or without cleanser. There was no other information on the package, and the card from FFF doesn’t really have much info either, so I’m not sure if the benefit is exfoliation, or if the konjac vegetable fibers it’s made from impart some type of nutrients to your skin or something, just that it’s “an all-natural way to restore the skin and balance your face’s pH level.” (I also just got a Clarisonic, so who knows what’s going on with my face right now. It’s not a very controlled experiment.)
  • Vaseline Intensive Care Aloe Soothe Spray Moisturizer: Call me boring, but I’d been thinking of trying this lotion and was so excited to see it in the box – a full-size can, too! It has a nice cool cucumber scent, and the light spray just stays where you put it until you rub it in, no running down your legs or anything. It’s certainly plenty moisturizing for summer.

In total, the FabFitFun Summer 2015 box contains over $275 in product, and can be yours for only $50 – $40 if you use my code! I think it’s definitely worth it, it was a fun treat and is packed with products that are perfect for summer. At first I was kind of wary of joining an automatic subscription service, but now I’m really excited to see what the Fall brings!

Photo borrowed from Hello Subscription – check out their post for more detailed photos of the products!