Thursday, September 29, 2011

Illinois Nut & Candy Review

I got to try a new chocolate company called Illinois Nut & Candy and as you can see from the above picture they sent me a great bit of chocolate to try! Here is what is on the plate:

1. English Toffee (the one with all the nuts on it)
2. Toffee Bark (the squares with white drizzle)
3. Caramel Pecan Clusters
4. Cashew Caramel Clusters

Now, these last two I am not 100% sure of but they match the pictures on their website. Illinois Nut & Candy did not send one of those charts that usually come on top of the candy letting you know which is which so I am guessing since it looks pretty close. I can tell you that all of it was really good. I even gave a piece of each to my friend and neighbor because she loves chocolate as much as I do and I knew she would be a great judge also.

So, when she confirmed my thoughts, I knew I had made a good choice in asking for toffee bark! The rest I let them choose what they consider their best sellers so I did not know what would be coming until I opened the box.

The English Toffee is a little different than regular toffee, as they put nuts on top of it. It is kinda like a heath bar with crushed bits of nuts on top of it! Then the Toffee Bark is like a sheet of candy that they cut into squares and then drizzled white icing on top of it. The pieces they sent were really thick so you don't need to eat much of it at one time. The pecan & caramel clusters were really awesome!

Those were my husband's favorite so I was glad that they sent those. I had completely forgotten about what he might like! I just totally blanked out and could only think about the toffee!! Between you & me, he never needs to know that, okay? As far as he knows, I got him the most awesome caramel clusters he has ever ate!!

They have got so much to choose from like jelly beans, jawbreakers, chocolate covered nuts, sugar free candy, gluten free candy, chocolate covered apples, dried fruits, popcorn, truffles and the list goes on. Trust me, you will want to check them out! They have a little of everything that you could possibly crave.

They also have a baking supplies section where you can get things to put on top of your desserts whatever they may be. They also do corporate gifts along with baskets, tins, towers, platters and gifts for children. They have alot to offer for whatever occasion you are looking for.

Now, for this company's little bit of history, here is what I found on their site:

Raising the Candy Bar is the latest addition to Illinois Nut & Candy Home of Fantasia Confections. For over a quarter of a century Illinois Nut & Candy formerly Illinois Nut Outlet has been doing just that raising the bar. Since September 2004 Melissa and David's goal has been to constantly raise the candy bar by not only being the largest Kosher candy store in the Midwest but by trying to be the largest niche candy store as well. We offer Gluten Free, Lactose Free, Sugar Free, Organic, Vegan Friendly - all under Kosher supervision.

We have over 600 confections from apple rings to zebra bark. Our expansive selections of nuts are freshly roasted and our dried fruits come from around the world. Our highly trained chocolatiers combined with their experience and our valued recipes have given us world renowned confections such as our own hand made English Toffee as well as our Taffy Apples.

Our chocolate confections include miniatures filled with crèmes, barks, dipped glazed fruit, turtles, rocky road bars, and two separate lines of truffles our traditional line and our signature line for the more discriminating pallets. All of our chocolates are available in both a smooth creamy milk chocolate and in a rich semi sweet chocolate. What truly separates us is our commitment to customer service. Our goal is to make your experience a sweet one.

Here are some ways you can reach out and make contact:

Illinois Nut & Candy
Home of Fantasia Confections
3745 West Dempster
Skokie, IL 60076
Tel: 847.677.5777
Fax: 847.677.5778

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

More Lost Than Found Book Review

Well, I finally got my first book review thanks to BookSneeze, More Lost Than Found by Jared Herd. Jared serves as the Creative Director for XP3, a division of the Rethink Group. For the past 10 years he has traveled alot speaking to hundreds of thousands of high school and college students.

While doing this he also was on staff at two different churches, one being in Alpharetta, Georgia and the other in Costa Mesa, California. So, I was really astounded that he found the time to write this book based on his personal struggle with his beliefs and what he experienced.

His father is a minister of a church and when he was six years old his father baptized him in that same church one Sunday night. He talks of how much he loved his father and that his father assured him that his name would be in the Book of the Lambs.

Jared so believed his father until seven years after that baptism he found out his father had had an affair and his belief in God was shattered.

Jared's story is about one finding themselves at a cross road, like many of us do, and he chose to go the wrong way. He eventually finds himself back at church more to look for answers than because he believes. This book is his quest to find answers and to understand why and how things happen. It is also about his personal relationship with God and his struggles to accept his father's failings and that they were not God's failings.

For me personally, this was a hard book to keep up with. Jared would be on a subject and then go back to the past and I found it hard to keep up with him and what he was trying to get across to his readers. For those of you who are more along the lines of liking the technical side of religion, you will probably like this book and the author's struggles and triumphs. I got so lost myself and in the end could not really understand what point he was trying to make.

This is only my opinion and someone else might read this book and get something entirely different out of it. That is the wonderful beauty of all of us having our unique experiences and we all see things in certain ways different from others. That is not a bad thing as if we all agreed, we would all certainly be boring.

In conclusion, if you are a die hard by the book Christian, you will find something comforting about this book because you will understand it and love it. But to a simple laymen, like myself, all it did was crowd my head with unnecessary information, when just telling me a simple straightforward story about his life without all the technical stuff included, would have done just fine. I like simple, straight storytelling, without all the added glitz or steady non stop technical facts getting in the way of a good story.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel Review

I am very excited to tell you about this wonderful at home peel from Juice Beauty! I have used their products off and on over the years and when my skin was going thru some sensitive issues I sought out an organic approach to skincare that would not be so harsh on my face but still deliver good results. I have to tell you that Juice Beauty is one of the best ones I have found that will deliver spa-grade results.

The product I got to review was their Green Apple Peel Full Strength. Let me be clear right here about something. They have a Full Strength Green Peel and a Sensitive Green Peel that is not as strong as the Full Strength but both are organic but with slightly different amounts of the same ingredients and the Full Strength has a potent alpha and beta hydroxy acid complex.

The Full Strength is for mature, normal, oily or dry skin. If you have redness, rosacea or any kind of sensitive skin then you need to use the Sensitive Green Apple Peel. When you go to this page you will see some real people who had problems before using Juice Beauty and then see what their skin looks like now after using the products and they have several videos you can watch of people giving their testimony and believe it or not, one of them is a young man!

I have used at home peels for quite awhile so my face is used to them and I was able to move from the Sensitive to Full Strength. I really love this product! The first couple of times you put it on it will tingle some and if you are not used to peels it may even burn slightly.

If it does more than that wash it off immediately. This means you need to start with something alot milder. Please test this product on the side of your face or the back of your hand before applying all over your face and then find out it is too much for you!

The ingredients in the Full Strength Green Apple Peel is a mix of potent alpha and beta hydroxy acid complex from organic apple, lemon, grape, raw cane sugar and willow bark that delivers spa-grade exfoliation, revealing a brighter complexion while firming the skin and eliminating the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. And I am here to tell you it works!

Now, you won't see it right away but by the time you are finished with one jar you should start seeing some improvement. If you have never used peels before start out doing only once a week for 15 minutes on a clean fresh face. Apply a good layer all over the face avoiding the eye area and be careful around the mouth. Let set for 15 minutes then wash off. Please use a very good moisturizer after any peel regardless of what brand.

Once you have used it for a few weeks you can do what I do. I use this product 2-3 times a week to get the maximum results. You will see the difference within a month if using 2 or more times a week and if you use just the once a week it might take a little longer. But, I do not want you to burn your face or flake really bad so for the first couple of weeks just do it once a week.

Besides being a peel it is an exfoliating cream that will get rid of your dead skin so new skin can replace it making your skin look radiant and smooth. The cost of a 2 fl.oz. jar is $45.00 but if you have a peel at the derm's office you will pay upwards of $150 or more per peel. It may take a little longer but it will be safer and you control the amount you want to use based on what you are trying to achieve.

Along with the full size jar of the Green Apple Full Strength Peel they sent me a couple of sample packets of a new product they have called Stem Cellular Repair and there was enough in it for 2 days and I was amazed at how smooth my skin felt. The other packet was the Eye Stem Cellular Repair and the area around my eyes just drank it all up in one swoop! Juice Beauty has a whole line of products to help enhance the use of their Peels and to get the most out of them.

In the beginning, I would use their moisturizers and eye creams to get the maximum benefit. I must admit I have been hodge podging here and there but my skin has already adjusted to the use of more powerful skincare but for someone just starting out it is best to stay with the same brand until you get to know what makes it all work better then you can experiment.

But I am so confident you will love Juice Beauty that you will want to stay with them. They have customers who go on their website and write reviews of their products so if you don't quite believe me then go read the reviews! I, personally, can't wait to try some of the other great products that they have. Go to this page and read the difference between what is in their products versus some of the other companies who put all kinds of chemicals in their products and you will see why they can say with such great confidence "Organics to Clear Skin in 30 Days"!

Now, for the part I know you are just dying to read, History! Ta-Da! Did you think I would let you get away that easy? This may be a big company but they have a big heart and just knew that someone like me might come knocking one day and want some background, so they were kind enough to provide it! I love it when "a plan comes together"!

Here we go:

Juice Beauty… Innovative organic beauty solutions masterminded by a California team passionate about organic and healthy lifestyles and whose organic products are backed by powerful science. It all started when Karen Behnke, serial wellness entrepreneur, who built one of the first corporate wellness companies in the country, developed a keen interest in personal care products upon becoming pregnant with her first child at the age of 40. She was astounded to learn that, although the skin absorbs over 60% of what is placed on it, there were very few available healthy personal care products that worked well.

Karen subsequently bought the name “Juice Beauty” and launched the Company. Karen, lead investor and head of the business, brought together a group of well known executive investors with whom she had long term working relationships and that shared the drive to build a mission driven business. Juice Beauty’s mission is to bring authentically organic, high efficacy and pleasurable beauty solutions to people worldwide. Juice Beauty is proud to fulfill this mission by not only supporting organic farming, solar manufacturing, and the recycled paper business, but to put the healthiest ingredients (that work!) on customers’ bodies.

Karen has assembled a team of experienced professionals including Melissa Jochim, Director of Product Development, who has a profound understanding of science and a deep passion for organic formulations. Together, along with Juice Beauty’s team of scientists, they pioneered the organic juice based formulations that are so fitting to the brand name. Juice Beauty was just awarded its’ first patent for the unique Green Apple Peel formulation and is continuously acknowledged in the press with “best of” awards.

Juice Beauty has a 100% Certified Organic Juice Base:

Most beauty products that use “organic” in their marketing use only a few organic ingredients in a water base, making the total organic content dilute and often less than 5%. Instead of the typical water base that cannot be certified “organic or pesticide free,” Juice Beauty puts over 100 USDA certified organic powerful ingredients into a 100% certified organic juice base (made from over 30 different juices) thus bringing the total organic content up to 98% in every product. Clinically validated age-defying results:

Juice Beauty uses powerful ingredients such as alpha lipoic acid, coenzyme Q10, DMAE, peptides, fat soluble Vitamin C and essential fatty acids for optimum results proven by clinical studies that have shown an 85% reduction in free radical skin cell damage (which means less wrinkles and sun spots!).

Commitment to Healthy Ingredients:

The Juice Beauty team continually searches the West Coast for the purest, most effective organic ingredients, including organic juices, aloe vera, honey, botanicals, plant oils, and raw cane sugar from farms that specialize in sustainable and organic farming. These amazing formulations are made without parabens, petroleum, propylene or butylene glycol, sodium lauryl sulfates, pesticides, phthalates, artificial dyes or synthetic fragrances.

Here are some avenues to reach them:

Mailing Address:
Juice Beauty
711 Grand Avenue Suite 290
San Rafael, CA 94901
Telephone: 415-457-4600

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Self Indulgence Scrub Review

I have a wonderful new product I found that I thought you might love to hear about. Self Indulgence's Scrub of the Month is such a rare gem you have got to go check it out!

You sign up for the program and then once a month you get a different scrub and the one I got to review was October, which is Caramel Apple!

Mmm, doesn't that make you think of eating Caramel Apples?

Well, believe me, it smells just the same. When I first opened the jar the smell of caramel and apples hit me like a ton of bricks but it was subtle yet alive.

I don't know if that makes sense but it wasn't so overpowering that all you smelled was just sweetness.

 Remember when Mom would make that awesome Apple Pie? Well, take that and mix in some melted caramels and mix them up!

Now, that I have that picture and smell in your head, let me tell you what it does for your dry thirsty skin! I just took a small dollop because I wasn't sure if I wanted to smell like caramel apples and used a little water so it would not be too rough on my hands and started rubbing it all over my hands.

After a few minutes I rinsed it off and I could tell right away that my hands were soft, smooth and the smell was so faint that it did not interfere with my perfume I had on!

So, all my worrying about the smell was a mute point. It just smelled fresh and crisp, just like a good apple would be! The best part is, if you sign up for the Scrub of the Month, every month you will get a different smelling scrub!

Not only will you get a great scrub but you will be helping to "Scrub out Domestic Violence"!! Check their website for more information.

Here are some of the other products they offer:

1. Anti-aging Face Products
2. Foot Products
3. Natural Elements Bodycare
4. Natural Remedies
5. Essential Oils
6. Essential Oil Blends
7. Top Shelf Blends
8. Candles
9. Aromatherapy
10.Etcetera (unique tools to help you relax,etc)
11.Media (relaxing CD's, books,etc)

So, as you can see, they have a whole new world out there for those of you who love natural remedies, aromatherapy and wonderful smelling candles! Who knew? When I first heard of this company I thought it was just about scrubs, boy was I wrong! Oh, one more thing, you can have what they call Retreat parties with your friends. So, go check it out and see what all you can get when you have a Retreat!

Now, here is my little quirky thing I like to do, you know, the history part. As always, I quote directly from their site so no misquotes happen:

Self Indulgence was born out of a call with a girlfriend. The timing was just right. I had been really focusing on myself for two years prior. After the unexpected death of my mother I slowly learned the importance of intentional and indulgent self care, putting my needs first for a small portion of my busy day. Otherwise, there is simply nothing left over for others in my life that need me and rely on me for their own existences, namely my four children.

After 6 years we have redefined our position in the Wellness Industry and are excited for our company and clients whether we can serve you in our original style of a home party or in our new concept and you will feel comfortable with us and will begin your own journey of Self Care and Wellness.

I love our fabulous products and the concept of cooperating with others to bring wellness to the lives of our clients, and financial independence to our sales teams. It’s exciting for me to see women “Sink into Self Indulgence” and stay with us as clients, consultants, retailers and references. I am truly blessed, and I sincerely hope that you too will be blessed in some way by Self Indulgence.

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Back to Basics Cocoa-Latte Hot Drink Maker Review

I have a really awesome new Cocoa-Latte Hot Drink Maker from Back to Basics which I recently received from Plow & Hearth to review! Mike, my hubby, was more excited than me because he is actually more into Lattes than I am.

He loves all that foamy stuff so for him I decided to review something that he would benefit from since I have been getting such awesome things just for me. I wanted to do something great for him because he is such an awesome man who deserves all the best things I can do for him. He really loves those lattes and I do too when the mood hits me.

Besides, what is good for him is good for me, too, because as the old saying goes "What goes around comes around" is really true. If it is good for him then it ultimately benefits me also because when he is happy then I am happy!

Of course, with my bad luck, we got the pictures of the machine and then the battery went dead! Well, I thought, Okay, just charge it and then we will pick it back up. Right, did I really think it was going to be that simple? Well, evidently the battery died, I mean really dead! It could not be charged so we will have to get a new battery or a new camera whichever is the least expensive.

But I had already emailed Plow & Hearth and told them it would be up this weekend and I did not want to back down from my promise so I am going ahead with the review. So, I apologize you won't see an up close drink it made but I can tell you about it!

The machine is really so simple to use a child could understand the directions. It does not have to be put together so no tools are required! It also comes with a really cool manual that has recipes inside on various kinds of drinks to make along with the simple directions on how to use and how to clean it afterwards.

Here is the recipe we decided to try, Mocha Latte:

2 cups of milk
1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons of chocolate syrup or (1 tablespoon cocoa powder with 2 tablespoons of sugar)
These are optional: Whipping cream and grated chocolate shavings or powder

We did deviate from the original recipe and added 3 tablespoons of Kahlua syrup and 3 tablespoons of vanilla liquid coffee creamer. Oh, my gosh, it was so good! What is really neat about this machine is that you turn it on and it stays on while it is heating the coffee and blending at the same time. There is a button you can hit to make the foam for the latte.

While you are pouring the drink from the machine it makes the foam! Mike really did love it so much he had 2 cups! I breathed a sigh of relief because it turned out perfect even though I could not get a picture of him grinning after the first couple of sips.

You also will love the Latte Machine because it can make more than latte's. It is also good for making a great cup of hot cocoa, chai tea latte's, gourmet hot cocoa & latte's, steamed & flavored milks, hot wassail, fruit punch drinks, hot apple ciders, hot grogs, hot toddy, buttered rum, spiced teas, cappuccino's and many more flavors of coffee!

Now, I know you can find something on that list you would love to have. I can't wait for Christmas so I can make Hot Wassail! That is one of our favorite drinks to make during the Christmas holidays.

Just wanted to show you what it looked like the day we got it in the mail and it shows a good picture of what the drink would have looked like similar to the one we made. I really do recommend this product if you love hot drinks, whichever they may be, as much as we do in the coming fall and winter months.

Nothing like a hot cocoa or latte to warm you up and to feel comfy and cozy while relaxing whether it is watching a movie or reading a book or just sitting around talking!

You have to go and check out Plow & Hearth's website and see all the neat things they have to offer. Believe me, it is not just kitchen products!

They have garden, dining, kitchen, footwear, apparel, outdoor living, bathroom accessories, rugs, furniture, bedroom, pet products and many more than I can possibly mention.

It is such a versatile company that offers a range of great products that are of good quality if they are as good as my Latte Machine then I have no problem ordering something from them in the future. Actually, I would love to have the Black Bear Body Pillow! I was so in love with it but kept nudging myself to get something Mike would enjoy so I bypassed it but still would love to have it. Maybe I can put a little birdie to Mike's ear and see what happens for Christmas!

Here is my favorite part of the review, a little history about this awesome company and how they started and what they stand for and believe in.

As always, I make sure you understand this part is what I quote from their website:

What began as a small retail store in Madison, Virginia in 1980 has grown to include our flagship brand, Plow & Hearth®, plus two others that have joined our family during the past quarter century. Plow & Hearth offers unique, high-quality products for home, hearth, yard and garden. Problem Solvers® provides practical solutions for everyday living. Wind & Weather® offers a complete selection of indoor and outdoor weather-related instruments and gifts, plus elegant home and garden ornaments. The Plow & Hearth family of brands also has a growing list of retail stores.

Our customers are nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts, with a concern for the environment and an appreciation for high-quality products that are both practical and functional. We currently have more than five million customers enjoying our products. In 2005, Plow & Hearth celebrated its 25th anniversary. We have grown from a small country store into a multi-channel retailer, a leader in the catalog industry and the premiere source of products for the home, hearth, yard and garden. Today, we still believe in the importance of our customers and the value of the products we offer.
Learn More.

I hope you go and visit my new favorite store and see what you can find to make your home a more pleasant place to be for you and your family. I learned that they have a Made in America section if you are one of the many who prefer to shop for only Made in America products.

They also have a Deal of the Week where they offer an item at a great price. Oh, and while you are there register for the $200 GC that they give away every month! Right now they have their Halloween section up & running so check it out also while you are there!

Here are some tools to help you reach out to Plow & Hearth:

Plow & Hearth
7021 Wolftown-Hood Rd
Madison, VA 22727
Telephone: 1-800-494-7544

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures(until it died on me today!)

Friday, September 23, 2011

GoJane Ankle Boot Review

I was so excited to get these buttoned shearling trim ankle boots from GoJane! When I first ordered them off the catalog online I was really nervous because alot of times I order shoes online I have to return them. They never fit or just don't look right. Thankfully, that was not the problem with my ankle boots!! Double excited that they fit and did not have to return them made my day.

They are so incredibly comfortable with or without socks. I tried them on without and have plenty of room to move around and when I added my socks (light socks) I was just as cozy with my leggings. I love the look of leggings with boots and have a pair that come just below my knees and thought that nothing could beat that look until I tried on my ankle boots from GoJane!

I normally don't go for boots that have wool or sheepskin on them but something about them that day spoke to me because they were so cute looking, I took the plunge and got them. I have to tell you, my granddaughter is so envious of me right now! She "oo'd" and "ahh'd" about them forever when she saw them. She had one of her friends with her and from her reaction, too, I must have done a good thing because they would not shut up about my boots!

They come in three colors: black, light taupe and tan. They come in whole and half sizes so you should be able to get what you want. I mostly wear black so it was a no brainer for me. I don't think I have anything that brown, tan or taupe would go with.

They are just as cute, I just would not have anything to wear with them. GoJane has a huge collection of boots to chose from so I don't think you will have a problem in that department. I think the real problem will be deciding which one to choose. I went back and forth several times til I narrowed it down to three and the reason I chose these was I had always wanted to know how they would look and would they be comfortable.

And the answer to that is yes to both questions. I am so in love with my boots I can't wait til it gets cooler here in Georgia so I can wear them out!

I could not have said this any better so I am quoting from the first page of their online catalog for boots:

Boots may be made for walking, but the women’s boots at GoJane are made purely for high fashion and exceptional style. They just happen to be comfortable and affordable, as well. GoJane features an extensive collection of high end designer-inspired high heel boots, slouchy boots, shearling boots, cowboy boots, moto boots, and many more for a fraction of the price you would pay elsewhere. With most boots styles available for less than $30, you can afford to buy multiple styles and colors for every season and occasion. Don’t delay! Start shopping now before your favorite women’s boot styles sell out!

GoJane also carries other types of shoes ranging from high heels, wedges, flats and sandals. The only reason I nixed the idea of heels is I have had both knee's replaced and I need shoes/boots that keep me as close to the ground as possible. Last thing I need is to take a nose dive on concrete and bust those expensive babies! Not to mention the pain!! So, you really need to check out the long list of shoes that they have awaiting for you to come and pick from.

As I was browsing around I found that they have a whole line of Hello Kitty products. Boy, that would make some girl's dream come true! I am amazed that those products are still around but look how long Barbie has lasted! I guess the best of the rest really do endure the test of time. Wow, I was so amazed by this site!

They have tops, dresses, jeans, tanks, jewelry, handbags, watches, hair accessories, swimwear, hats, clutches, scarves, belts, sunglasses and even formals! Phew! Did I get all of that out? Man, you are going to have a tough time deciding what to choose or you could choose more than one item! Just call it retail therapy, if anyone asks.

But really, no one should have a problem because everything is so totally affordable. Oh, by the way, they add over 100 new styles every week so keep checking back with them to make sure you don't miss out on something you might like. When you order anything $60 and over shipping is free!

They do have size charts on their site to help you pick the right size to avoid any problems with your order but if there is a problem you can get a refund or exchange within 30 days of receipt, unless you have altered or worn & washed any garment. The exception to the case is Halloween costumes. Those are final and can not be returned so make sure what you want to be for Halloween before you order. For any returns you are responsible for shipping and handling so try to be as sure as possible about a size or color before ordering.

They also recommend you calling them ahead of time to tell them you are returning something for an exchange so they can hold that item you want so that it is not sold by the time your returned item gets back to them. I would also insure the package in case it gets lost if it is over a certain amount that only you know what is considered too high a loss.

As GoJane is an online store only there is no "real" address to get ahold of them other than when you need to return something so I don't have a whole lot of info for you on the contact or history part but here is what I do know about them: Returns
2900 East Spruce St.
Ontario, CA 91761

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bil-Jac Dog Food Review

I was very fortunate to get to be able to review this dog food company called Bil Jac.

We have had alot of trouble finding a dog food that Charlie likes and will eat. He was 3 years old in June and that is how long we have been searching. When he was a little puppy he ate dog food as long as I softened it a little with gravy or water he would eat it.

Then one day he just decided he was not going to eat! He was getting weak and finally the Vet said we could boil chicken only, no other meat, just chicken. So, for the last 2 1/2 years we have been boiling chicken for Charlie to eat. Now, he does eat his chicken jerky, duck jerky and his sweet potato looking french fries (dog sweet potato not human).

So, he wasn't just eating chicken. We went thru alot of dog food that we ended up giving away! He won't eat bacon, sausage, liver or steak flavored anything including treats! The trainer at Petsmart told us it would be hard to train him because he doesn't like treats and that is what they use to train dogs so it was a lost cause because Charlie would turn his nose up at all the treats offered!! Just wanted to give you a little background on why this was so important.

We did exactly as we were told to do and that was give him two choices of food to choose from. We had Purina Fiesty Blend (which came as a sample in the mail and he actually liked it & I was going to buy a bigger bag until we got the Bil-Jac offer) and the Bil-Jac Chicken, Oatmeal and Yam flavored dog food.

Here is how he first reacted to the bag:

He was very curious what was in the bag so we opened it and took out a handful and placed it beside his other dry dog food (he will also not eat out of a bowl, it has to be on the placemat, he thinks he is human because he sees us use placemats!) and he immediately started on the Bil-Jac!

This was really an amazing site to see because Charlie will not eat unless we play ball and throw the ball pass his placemat and on his way to getting the ball he stops and eats!

I am not kidding, we have to literally play ball to get him to eat!! And look at him going to town!

Isn't that just mind blowing? I have never seen him eat so fast! I then took a picture of what was left and the fact that he did not touch the other food not one time!
The proof is in the pudding, as they say, but we were so shocked and actually happy because maybe, just maybe, the boiling chicken days are over!

Or at least he will go down to eating it just once a day instead of two.

I wanted to give you a little background on why this happened.

I read on Bil Jac's site that they use real chicken and they actually use more real fresh chicken than any other dog food company. In fact they will tell you that for a 6 lb. bag of food you will get 4 lbs. of fresh chicken, 15 lb. bag gets 10 lbs. of chicken and the 30 lbs. of bag gets 20 lbs. of chicken! They say that their formula will make it easy and safe for your dog to switch immediately without having a transition between the two foods.

After one month of using the their food you will start noticing the changes. Their skin, coat and muscle tone improves, their stools will be smaller and firmer which means more complete digestion and they will feel more satisfied after eating! After awhile we will notice that the better nutrition will mean smaller portions because they get fuller quicker and you won't have to use so much dog food!! Yeah, I am all for that!!

I learned on Bil-Jac's site that they have a Best Friend Club you can join and get a monthly email newsletter filled with funny stories, fun facts, member only discounts and training tips. Oh, they even have a Love Letters section where people who have switched over to Bil-Jac send them emails and actual mail letting them know how much happy and playful their dogs seem since making the switch!

I can tell you that after a week of eating Bil-Jac Charlie is more feisty and does not take as many naps as he used to. I recommend if you have a dog or puppy like my Charlie, I would try Bil-Jac first before you waste as much money as we did all this time trying to find something he would eat. Thank you so much Bil-Jac for letting me try your new dog food out on Charlie!!

Now, for the history part, Yeah! I finally found a company who doesn't mind sharing how they got started. My reader's know how I feel about history, it is where we come from and why that makes what our country is today and I am always curious as to why or how we got here.

This is the first time I have run into a company that gave so much history that I will not have room to quote all of it so you will be on your own to go to their website and seek out the end of the story! So, this is what I found on Bil-Jac's site and as always, I quote from them so I am as accurate as possible:

It's a career decision almost everyone faces at some point in their lives. Either go into business for yourself, or work for someone else. For many, the decision doesn't take too long to make because the resources needed to start a business can be hard to come by. That was not, however, the case for two young men who, more than 60 years ago, found themselves in the unique position of having the resources as well as the knowledge and the drive to start a pet food company.

In the early 1940's, both brothers were in the armed forces, serving in World War II. When they returned to their hometown of Medina, Ohio, several years later, Bill and Jack seized the opportunity to create a superior quality pet food that would fill a gap in the pet food market at that time.

“My dad realized that there was an awful lot that could be done in the area of pet nutrition - namely with dogs and cats," said Bob Kelly, current president of Bil-Jac Foods and son of co-founder Bill Kelly. "He thought a great improvement could be made in what was being offered to the consumer.”

In 1947, the brothers founded Bil-Jac Foods Inc. Coming up with a company name was easy: They simply took their first names, dropped the last letter of each and combined them. The company's initial product was Bil-Jac Frozen Dog Food. “...a fresh product that is taken care of properly and is not damaged in processing is by far the best way to feed,” Kelly said.

Consequently, only fresh meat sources were used in the food, and the product was then frozen as a means to keep it fresh during delivery. "It could also be stored for long periods of time, then thawed and fed as necessary," Kelly explained. Despite the fact that the brothers sold only six pounds of the food on their first day in business, success ensued, with the first formulation remaining the company's sole product for nearly 30 years.

Here are some ways to contact my new best company:

Bil-Jac Foods
3337 Medina Road
Medina, Ohio 44256
Phone: (800) 321-1002
Fax: (330) 722-7999

Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures. I am a BzzAgent member and received a coupon to get a bag of Bil-Jac for free.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Eden Fantasys Review

When I was first asked to do this review I was very nervous about writing something like this because I thought I had to talk about things I am uncomfortable talking about on a blog that I am trying to keep clean and fun for everyone. Then I went on their site and saw that they are much more than an adult store.

They have items like candles, massage oils, lotions, shaving creams, body washes and massage candles. So, I thought, mmm, I could do that. Just write about the side I am comfortable writing about and then just hit on a few key good points about this unusual website that seems to be catching on like wildfire because I have seen it popping up all over the blogging world in giveaways and in reviews.

Eden Fantasys is just about anyone's cup of tea because it gives the sexual woman or man a fun and exciting place to shop or the less adventurous person a place to shop for some really good candles and bath products. I have not used a massage candle yet but from those who have I have been told it will leave your skin so soft and silky. Now, that I could use. I have very dry skin and anything that will help me towards getting it smooth I will try at least once.

And then there is the lingerie line. I looked it over and yes, there are some that are over the top, but then there were a few gowns I would not mind having. So, it kinda opened up my mind to exploring a little and see what else I was misinformed about.

I must say I have never seen so much content on a website like this one has! It must be pretty popular because they have books you can buy on various subjects and they interview the authors of the books and give you excerpts from their books along with interview highlights. They even have their own book club!

I can just imagine what that must entail! I bet we would not find any of those books on Oprah's list (at least that she would admit) but it is all in fun and really isn't that what we all want, a little fun in our lives, a little magic, a little humor, a little playfulness, a little closeness and to feel loved and sexy all rolled up into one big package?

Their website even has Forums you can hook up with to talk about whatever your heart desires along with polls you can do to see what everyone else is doing. Then there is the section I touched on briefly above and that is the Interviews section where you can read what some authors and clinical sexologists are talking about.

Also in that section you can actually read about some Reviews that others have done. They have a Community Corner where I guess their admirers write in and discuss things going on. Who knew all this was going on with a website that you just thought was all about selling sex toys to adults?

They are having a Fall Sale going on right now where you can save up to 70% off on hundreds of items so if you are into these kinds of things, here is your perfect opportunity to grab some seriously reduced products for a great bargain. They are even offering free T-Shirts with an order or a free Tote bag or Eden body wipes. I am going to assume that body wipes is probably like the wipes we buy to clean our kids or ourselves.

Lastly, I checked out the body wash section where I found bubble bath products, body washes, bath crystals (I think they must be the same thing as salts) along with some sprays that you can use to spray your sheets to make them feel like silk! Now that is just too cool!

Now that might be interesting without being downright naughty. I also found body oils here along with kissing balm (which I think you use just like chapstick to keep your lips moist) spritzers you spray on your body for men and women mind you, along with a feminine spray, rose petal soap flakes (which actually does not sound too bad) and then lastly a vibrating mesh sponge!

Now, that would be interesting to see! This mesh sponge is vibrating while you are trying to take a shower! Oh, I could have such hilarious fun with this thing. I think it would be the perfect gag gift, don't you?

I hope I have given you some info that may or may not help you in deciding whether you would like to visit this interesting site that they call Eden Fantasys. Well, I will be darned! Just went to get contact info for all of you and just found out that this company is based in Atlanta, Georgia! I have been trying without much luck to feature Georgia business's on my blog and this one just came right up and hit me in the face!

Here are some ways you can reach out and give some love:

Mailing Address:
Web Merchants, Inc.
2745 Bankers Industrial Drive,
Atlanta, GA 30360
Telephone: (888) 506-5516

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours.

Little Lilly Polka Dot Bedtime Blog Review

BWS tips button

This is the cutest little website I have come across for children! I don't have any kids at home but I got my grandson who lives in South Carolina to get his mom to let him watch this and even though it is about a girl he laughed so much his mom said it was infectious and she broke out laughing with him!

This website is all about children and you gotta let them watch at least once. When I was first approached about doing a review on a blog and not a product I was a little apprehensive because I would not have any pictures to show and I really had none for this at all except I copied her button and put it here. Of course it does not work being inside of a review or else I just don't know how to get it to work. The link is further down in bold purple lettering.

Wendy Reed is the author and illustrator who has created the children's picture book Little Lilly's Polka Dot World. She has beautifully made into a fun and colorful book about a character named Little Lilly Polka Dot, a lesson for children that going to the doctor is not so scary. She has also made a wonderful fairyland like interactive website, which is found on for your children to play, listen and learn.

Here is what she says on her blog under Welcome:

My name is Wendy Reed and I am the creator of Little Lilly Polka Dot and her fun-filled polka dotted world. With this blog, I will give you and your kids the opportunity to watch as Lilly's world is expanded to include more characters and more adventures! There will be illustrated stories as well as guest bloggers who will be writing on all kinds of things having to do with entertaining and teaching your kids.
I hope you will encourage your kids to play on the interactive which the kids seem to love! I also welcome comments, stories, ideas etc. about Little Lilly Polka Dot and her adventures. I will post as many as I can so we can all participate in Lilly's polka dotted world!!

She also has a Facebook page you can check out or go to her blog. I also looked up what she wrote in her About Me on her site and this is what she had to say:
Hi everyone!! I live in sunny Jacksonville, Florida. I have a BFA from Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida and a JD from University of Florida College of Law. Go figure!! I have had a number of high-powered careers, but I think the Little Lilly Polka Dot project is the most fun and the most rewarding! 
When I look at the little faces as I sing the Little Lilly song or read the book, I am reminded that my precious character Little Lilly Polka Dot can be a very positive influence in these little lives. Whether I am dreaming up a new fun story or am up til the wee hours of the morning doing new illustrations that will captivate young readers or eager website visitors, I am still excited to get up every day and work to grow the popularity of Little Lilly Polka Dot.
My prayer is that she is used in so many ways to bless so many little lives. Thank you for spreading the word!!

I hope you stop by her website and follow her and also let your children go and watch her wonderful website she created just for our children where all the activities are for them to sing, play and just have fun!

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by copying her button.

Febreze Set & Refresh Review

I was so very fortunate to be one of the lucky ones to get to try Febreze's new product called Set & Refresh. I was sent the fragrance set called Linen & Sky. It sorta reminded me of a fresh cotton smell. I really am particular about my fragrances at home and this one was just the right pick for me. I don't like too loud a smell or one that gives you a headache or makes you want to leave the room!

They sent one unit which already had a fragrance with it and then another package with 2 more refills in it. So, that way I had 3 fragrance packs to use and give me plenty of time to know how they were going to work. By the way, the oils in the little packs last for up to 30 days! That means I got a set for 90 days to decide how I feel about this particular fragrance but also how the little container is easily hidden or if you like keeping it out in the open that is why they are designed to be pretty.

I was so excited to receive this product because we had been testing different products to see what would work best in our home due to having a little Yorkie named Charlie living with us inside our home. He is really not that much trouble but dogs being dogs they can make things a tad messy.

He really is housebroken but sometimes when my RA or Fibromyalgia acts up and I have to take short naps throughout the day, we do have a little section of puppy pads down and he knows where to go so he is not going on the carpet but just having the puppy pads down for any length of time and I can smell it if I don't get them up right away. So, I placed this unit on a table right beside the pads and have not smelled them since!

These little gems are not really too big or too small and the design is kinda cute as to where someone would not be asking you "What is that"? Also, I placed it on the bottom part of a table to avoid that question entirely. I want my home to smell great but to not have to keep explaining why and what it is all the time.

Also, I tried them in the bathroom, another place where I can't stand odors! I have been using several products in there to try and find the right one and Febreze tackled that problem easily.

So, I was super happy that all I got complimented on was how good my house smelled and what am I doing or using to make it smell so good.

I checked on their site and here are the fragrances that are available in the Set & Refresh line and surely there will be one that you like:

2.Meadows & Rain
3.Linen & Sky
5.Fruity & Refreshing
7.Fresh & Clean

And guess what the best part of this little gem is? It works without batteries and neither does it have to be plugged in to work! You are saving batteries and electricity if you have been using the ones that do either of these in order to get their air fresheners to work!

Think Green! Think about how to cut down on waste and you will see these aren't such a bad investment in the future by protecting our environment just a tad little more. I also found a video you can watch on how it works and here is the link to watch. I hope I have provided you with enough good, solid and honest advice on this great new product that Febreze has come up with.

Who better to trust than Febreze? They have been making great products for a long time. Give it a try, you won't be sorry!

Here is a picture of the backside of the unit or you can use the other side like is pictured above, all about choices and what makes you happiest is all that matters. Febreze gave us the option of having two sides to show off!

Another thing I liked about the website is under the tab Products you will find more new products that they have come up with to make our lives a little easier and happier!

On top of that I found a tab called Special Offers where you can get coupons to help defray some of the cost of trying out some of their newer products.

Go take advantage of anything you can use. I do because I need all the help I can get in this economy!

Lastly, since this is a big company owned by Proctor & Gamble, there is no way I can provide any contact information other than what I have already shared with you in the links I have provided. I hope you visit them and take advantage of anything that might help you and your family have a nicer smelling home/garage/whatever it is you need to stop odors from happening.

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours.

The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures. “I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Febreze and received a Set & Refresh unit plus refills to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.”

Mattel Hot Wheels Review

I was so super excited to be chosen as part of the Hot Wheels Customs, where you get to personalize your very own Hot Wheels vehicle! I knew my grandson would love this and I wanted to surprise him with something I hope he will cherish and keep.

I wanted him to know that although he lives in another state and we don't get to see him often we do love him and care about him so I did this because of that. I wanted to make this car with his image on it and the words, "We Love You J.W.", so that every time he plays with it he will think of us.

This was so easy even I could not screw it up! I just went to their website and just clicked on the banner, Start Making Your Custom Car Now, and 6 easy steps later I had customized a blue semi truck! I could have chosen a dairy truck, surfing school bus, semi truck and school busted.

I chose the semi because I wasn't too sure about the others since he is only 5 he may not want a school bus and may not know what a dairy truck is. Like I said, it went so fast and extremely easy that I could not believe I spent less time doing that then I do going thru my emails!

I wish my camera could have done these pictures justice but the truck was such a bright blue that the lights kept bouncing off of it so I cold not get a 100% clear picture even after downloading I went into the fix it and tried to adjust the colors here and there but this was the best that I could do.

The personalized trucks are $7.95 each with S&H extra or shop Walmart and get a code for a free one!

I did not know that part until I was ready to post the review and I went on their website to get some more details and there it was right there on the first page.

Dumb me, I could have been telling my family and friends to get their own.

Oh, well, everyone will know now!

I know it is hard to tell with the glare and the picture staring right back at you but it really did come out better than I thought it would.

I only wished I could not have taken it out of the package so he wouldn't know that someone opened it before he did but I had to take it out to try and get a good picture.

Turns out the one inside the package turned out to be the best one but these aren't too bad. Hot Wheels Customs did a really great job. I doubt I could have pulled something like this off.

You will enjoy one feature on their site that I thought alot of children would like is the Video section which has lots of cartoon videso for children to watch.

Then they have a Toy Factory where they can go and make a wish list to make shopping for the holidays so much easier!

I may have to take advantage of this feature because it will leave no doubt in my mind what J.W. wants for Christmas!

Oh, my! What I found next will really have them wanting to go and visit their website and that is the Games For Kids section!! Whew, you are going to have to give them extra time on the computer for all of this!

I never knew Mattel had so many different sites and stores for us to explore. You can also click on Meet the Team and see who and how they come up with all their ideas on what to make. I was really impressed with their site and the many options to visit all the different toy companies that are under Mattel. They would love for you to check out Hot Wheels on Facebook and on Twitter. They even have their own YouTube you can visit and watch videos there.

I hope this has given you enough information to want to try and get your own Hot Wheels Custom truck for your little man in your life whether it is a son or grandson or even a nephew, they will all love having their very own truck with their picture and name on it. I did not know this but Mattel has been in the toy business for over 40 years and that they are the world's top selling car company!

Here is how to get in touch with Hot Wheels:

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 628428
Middleton, WI 53562-8428
Telephone: 800-858-0102

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures. I received this product as part of a promotional program between Hot Wheels and MomSelect.

Click Protein Drink Review

I have another company I thought everyone would be interested in and that company is Click Expresso Protein Drink.

This is a protein drink made with expresso and comes in two flavors, mocha and vanilla, which I got to sample both flavors.

Here is what is in each drink that you make:

1. Double Shot Express Coffee
2. 15 grams of lasting Protein
3. 23 Vitamins & Minerals
4. Low in Sugar & Calories

We tried the Mocha Flavor first and I really loved this one the best as I am more of a chocolate fan when it comes to what I add in my coffee drinks whether I am making them at home or buying from a coffee vendor. I tend to gravitate towards mocha most of the time. This is real easy to make. They can provide you with the shaker for $7.95 also when you order.

It is normally 2 scoops of Click and you fill the shaker with water up to the line that is on the shaker. Then shake for 30-60 seconds or you can even make this a hot beverage by microwaving for 60 seconds (make sure you shake it up before putting in the microwave)! Then remove from microwave and stir then put back in and heat another 45 seconds or to whatever temp you best like your coffee drink to be.

For your information if you get the sample packet that is one whole serving. At first I thought it said to take 2 scoops or spoons and it was too watery so then I added the whole sample packet and it turned out fine! Another thing I did (on my own) was put it in the freezer for about 30 minutes to make it like a slushy type of drink! It came out really good!

The other flavor we tried was the Vanilla Latte and that was hubby's favorite. He pretty much sticks to that flavor or hazelnut. He does love chocolate, just not in his coffee. I like Vanilla too, but, only on occasion. I will do mocha over vanilla any day. Whichever flavor you opt for, both are good and if you are into Protein Drinks for dieting reasons or healthy reasons this is another way to get your daily requirements.

I found out when I was looking around their website that they have the Original Click and the All Natural Click and here is the difference and I am quoting from their website:

All CLICK products are naturally flavored, colored, gluten-free and CLICK’s high quality protein is made from cows that are NOT treated with the rBST. The difference between CLICK original and CLICK all-natural is the zero-calorie sweetener. CLICK original is sweetened with fructose (about 4 grams) and a very small amount of sucralose (e.g. Splenda). For people who are sensitive to sucralose, CLICK all-natural uses a stevia, lo han blend. All other nutrition facts remain the same.

“From the 15 grams of casein protein to the 23 vitamins and minerals packed into each serving, we have always been proud of what goes into making CLICK,” according to company co-founder Greg Smith. “New, All-Natural CLICK, featuring a unique blend of natural sweeteners, allows us to reach individuals who only buy natural products. That means we will be helping even more people stay energized, get their vitamins, burn fat and enjoy a delicious treat. It is hard not to be proud of that.”

Much like the classic CLICK formulations, All-Natural CLICK fuels body for fat burning with 15 grams of protein per serving. Recent studies suggest that, when combined with an active lifestyle, a diet high in protein promotes natural weight loss by curbing the appetite and reducing calorie intake. Diets high in protein may also help reduce blood fat levels and maintain lean tissue. Now a healthy, natural weight loss solution is just a CLICK away.

You can buy their flavors in Canisters that are 16 oz., Single serve packets of 12 or like the ones I got which is one serving in the sample packet. You can also get their shakers if you don't have anything at home to shake it with or just want their shaker because it has a steel ball in it that helps distribute the powder while shaking and it has a top with a pop up lid so you can drink right out of the shaker so you can take it with you or pour it into your own glass at home.

They are also offering everyone a buy one get one free offer on their BOGO page. I hope you take the opportunity to try these wonderful shakes, especially if you are already drinking protein shakes and love coffee, you get both all in one!

I also found out that Vitamin Shoppe is offering samplings all over the country so go check out this site and see if one near you is offering to let you sample them before you buy.

They also have their own clothing gear you can order! Then I found the recipe section on their site with all kinds of great sounding recipes to try to add some variety to just drinking it out of the cup right after making it.

Check them out on Facebook and "Like" them.

They are in the midst of trying to get more fans out there to spread the word about Click!

Now, for my favorite part, the history section! I know, I know, but don't you want to know who they are and what possessed them to start up a company called Click? I am so I make it my mission to educate others so that they get inspired with their own ideas. Shoot, I might be grooming the next millionaire!

Here is what I found:

We first owned a small chain of women’s fitness centers in California. We were seeking a delicious, healthy beverage for our members in response to the growing wall of sugar based energy and coffee-house drinks on the market. Our simple solution – a delicious, all-in-one, espresso coffee, protein drink – that makes you feel that you are doing something good for yourself one cup at a time.

“The innovative idea of combining espresso and protein into a gourmet tasting healthy energy drink just CLICKed one day,” says Greg Smith, Founder of CLICKco LLC. “At our fitness center, we were educating our members on the weight managment and health value of protein but what they were still craving was their gourmet coffee or energy drink. The idea behind CLICK was to provide the indulgence and energy consumers crave in a beverage that not only tastes good but is good for you.”

CLICKco LLC located in Clovis, CA strives to be an ethical company providing premium all-in-one beverages to enhance those seeking healthier lifestyles.

As a small entreprenurial company with big plans, we encourage you to contact us and to let us know what you think. Also, please be sure to “Like” us on Facebook to help spread the word about CLICK ~ the Coffee Lovers Protein Drink!

May Your Day CLICK!
Greg and Beth Smith

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Lumiere Cosmetics Review

Today, I have a new mineral cosmetics company called Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics to tell you about. I have been very blessed to be able to get such a variety of different mineral makeups to try recently and I have to tell you that all of these companies take great pride in their products and all are so worth it!

It is just a matter of personal preference which one you like the best. I would have a hard time making that decision because they are all unique & different and all offer something "special" in their line to make them unique to that particular product. Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics makes your face look natural, radiant and lasts all day long.

Here is what I was sent to try:

1. Light Blue Shimmer for the eyes
2. Juicy Peach for the eyes
3. Sand Beige for the eyes
4. Wild Rose Blush
5. Clay Veena Blush
6. Light Beige Flawless Face
7. Fair Beige Cashmere for Face

Now, I have to tell you right off I am not a big eye shadow fan anymore. I used to love all the wild blues and greens of my youth and would wear them proudly but not now that I have gotten older! The great thing that Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics did was have me fill out a questionnaire to match me as close as they could and then asked me to send a recent photo to them to further make sure I got the right colors.

I really appreciated that they did not try to send me wild colors for my eyes instead they chose warm beiges and peach which is almost the colors I will use on the occasion that I do want to get fancy. I even actually liked the Blue Shimmer because it was not really blue when you put it on, it was more like a glitter. We tried to get pictures of it on my eyes but it wasn't dark enough to show on my eyes except for light bouncing back off of my eyes and then my husband can't see worth a crap so he kept taking blurry pictures so I took the camera away from him.

I tried to just use my arm to show the colors but even then we had a problem as I had to keep piling on the color in order for it to show up on the camera and then they looked so scary I did not want to show those either lest you thought that was the color you would get on your eyes.

Like I said they did a really good job matching me up and I am so fair looking that I really need the light colors because the darker ones would really be so dark I would look like I was trying to be a Goth or something.

Finally, I just took some pictures of the eye shadows in their sample pots and this is what they look like in the picture below:

The Juicy Peach is on the left and Sand Beige is on the right with Blue Shimmer in the middle.

You can wear their eye colors either dry for a subtle look or you can wet them for more dramatic looks.

Good thing I did not do that! Because the change was really noticeable!

They had a full range of colors to choose from going from Whites/Grays to Purples/Pinks. I did look at some of the model's eyes and they really had some pretty colors on their eyes.  I just would not wear them because I am not as young as they are. By clicking on the link you can see some of the colors they have to choose from and what the model was wearing.

I went on to try the foundations and that was not going to happen either. You can imagine how light the colors were with them being called Fair Beige Cashmere and Light Beige Flawless and it did not matter how much I put on my arm it was not going to show up. I can tell you that I chose the Fair Beige over the Light Beige because it blended better on my face and it did not look like I had any makeup on.

It gave my face the natural look I crave but it hid the imperfections and blended some of the places that are a little pinkish on the cheeks from what I don't know, I guess just getting older. It basically just evened everything out and really looked good.

Oh, one good reason also that it was better for me is that Flawless is made for normal to dry skin, which is what I have. They sent the Fair Beige Cashmere because it is for all skin types.  They also have Veena Velvet which is for normal to oily skin. Then the other category they have is Luminesse which is for all skin types also but the difference is it gives you a silky glow.

Flawless and Veena Velvet are all matte finishes while Cashmere is mostly matte with a soft silkiness. They all offer different degrees of coverage and everybody has their own way they want their makeup to look and that is what is so unique about Lumiere is that you can build up the makeup to the right level of shade that you want with their foundations.

Lastly, I tried the two blushes I was sent, Wild Rose and the Clay Veena. I did put those two colors on my arm and because the sample pots would not show up on the camera for some odd reason. I will show you the colors on my arm but remember I had to layer them alot heavier than I would have on my face and the weird thing is they came out almost exactly the same shade!

The Wild Rose is on the bottom or right side and the Clay Veena is on top or left side. They are not that color on your face.

Imagine that color cut in half and that is about what you really would have put on your face.

Or at least I hope that is what you would do unless you were going somewhere for Halloween! These also work like the eye shadows, you can wear them dry for subtle or wet for more dramatic color.

Here is where Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics did something a little different also: they have a forum site that you can go and talk about your experience or get questions answered or to just talk about the products! I also learned that they sell M-Pressed eye shadow and M-Pressed Blush for those of us who want their colors in a compact.

I do need to tell you that the pots are loose minerals so they do tend to fall all over the place if you are not careful. It may have been just because they were samples so I am not sure what the regular pots look like but just in case they are like mine, please be careful when you open them because they are loose not pressed.

Besides all the products I have mentioned they do carry lip products, concealers, finishing powders, skin enhancers, gel liners along with cream eye shadow if you don't like loose minerals.

The other thing I saw was that they have a Skin Bar which is where you can find their line of skincare. They ranged from Primers for the face to oils like Emu oil and Squalane Oil. Now here is where I am going to quote straight from their site because I really had no idea what the whole Emu Oil and now this Squalane Oil was all about and this is very interesting details that all of us need to know about these great sounding oils:

Emu Oil
Do you suffer from rosacea or eczema? Has acne left redness and scarring? Try our Emu Oil. After a few weeks, you’ll notice a remarkable difference in the appearance of your skin! Scarring from acne blemishes, rosacea, and eczema will be reduced; dry, chapped skin will be healed; and lifeless, dull facial skin will appear radiant, youthful, and clear.

Squalane Oil
Have other moisturizers left your face feeling lifeless and dry? Do they only attach themselves to the top layer of your skin, leaving you feeling dry and itchy only moments later? If you’re ready for a moisturizer that penetrates deep into your skin, reduces the appearance of age spots and wrinkles, protects against the sun’s ultraviolet rays, and makes your face feel rejuvenated, then you’ll love our Squalane Oil.

I just got this email this afternoon after I posted the review so I came back here to add to my review the sale they have going on right now that some of you might be interested in:

Just a quick update! We have some FABULOUS Gift with Purchase's this week!
Buy $15 - FREE Liner & Brow Brush
Buy $30 - FREE Baby Buki Brush
Buy $50 - FREE Angeled Fiber Optic Brush
See GWP Page for full details!

Also, a quick reminder about Prebuy Brushes - Time is running out, Please place your order quickly to ensure that you get the brushes you want for yourself..and for friends and family, they're a beautiful gift that will last years and years! - Again, please see the Prebuy page for full details :)Happy Shopping!!

I hope this gives you an overview of Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics is all about and, unfortunately, we will not be able to do the history on this company because I could not find anything much except legal stuff and you don't need to know that. I did get some contact information for you to get ahold of this company and all throughout this review I gave you links to go directly to each subject that I was talking about so you would not have to look it up yourself. I hope it helped you better experience what Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics is all about.

Get in touch several ways:

Mailing Address:
Lumiere Mineral Cosmetics
50 Genesee St.
New Hartford NY 13413

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Lilla Rose Flexi Review

I am doing another review for the company called Lilla Rose which is a Hair Jewelry company that sells such great hair accessories!  I deal with my rep, Denise Martin and she has been such a doll to work with! 

She is one of the most easiest going sponsor's I have worked with.  And between me and my granddaughter, Brandi, we love to play with our hair. The hair style she is wearing with this Flexi, which is called Crown of Hearts, is with her hair down and just taking the sides and pulling it back and then clasping the Flexi onto that part of her hair. Brandi's hair is so red it is hard to see the colors of this beautiful flexi but it is silver with pink beads.

I did take a picture of it just sitting on the table and will show you that in just a minute.  I had done a review last week on the You Pins and now I am doing the Flexi. I did them separately because it would have been such a long review with lots of pictures so I decided to do it this way so that you can really appreciate this company better by having a diverse range of products to show you what you can do with your hair!

Now, here below you get a little better idea of what the Flexi looks like. They are all so beautiful that you really need to go to their site and check out all the different styles they have to offer.

Now, on this next picture she wanted to do a ponytail. I told her I did not think her Flexi, which is the medium, would be able to hold her hair up because it is so thick! I don't know if you can tell or not, but believe me it is thick! So, the only way we could get her hair to stay in place was to use a hair rubberband made especially for ponytails. 

I tried to get a color that would blend in but you can see it and I apologize for that but still wanted to use the picture to show you that you can use them to make ponytails but to be sure you have the right size. If we had gotten a large she would not have had to use the band.  I did not think about her wanting to use it for that purpose so I did not think ahead. Her hair is so thick she does wear it up most of the time but I thought once she saw how pretty it made her hair with it down she would love it and she did and she will wear it down some but she prefers it being up.

Now this would have worked on someone who does not have as thick of hair as hers. So, it is really important for you to pick the right size for what you want to do with it. Now, my hair is so fine that a small works for me whether I want it down or up. I pull my hair back just like she did but because my hair is thinner, I grab the hair underneath also and use it to keep the Flexi from falling.

I don't use so much that it makes it look funny in the back, just enough to give it a little firmer hold. If your hair is super fine then I would get a mini and that should do great for those who don't have enough hair in the back to grab. So, hopefully, that gives you a little idea of what I mean by the size being important.

Now here is what her hair looked like in a ponytail:

Doesn't she have the best looking hair? She always thought her red hair was ugly growing up and now she is starting to appreciate how unique her hair really is. I have always told her that her hair was beautiful but she did not believe me until now.

She has a little confidence problem so this was another reason that Denise and I wanted to do something nice for her and help her see her potential and it is starting to work. I told her we all have body image issues but for her to find her best qualities and to highlight them so that people focus on that instead of what she thinks are her worst. 

I uploaded a different angle so that you can see it a little more up close and see that this Flexi along with the band her hair is pretty tight and isn't going anywhere.

Now if you are doing something really hard like working out then you would probably want the band in there too to make sure it does not fall out.

But for casual wear like going to a movie or dinner, then you could go without the band because they do fit snug.

Remember, if you have thick hair like hers and want to wear your hair in a ponytail, then the large would have been a better choice.  This medium though works beautiful for the top picture. Denise always tells me that you need an assortment of different sizes because they will do different things.

One size in this case does not fit all the different hair styles that you may want to experiment with. But, if you have thin hair like I do, then the small will work for all hair styles.  It has worked on all the ones I have tried so far so I am not telling you something that I have not tried. So,take the plunge and get at least one for what you want to do and then experiment with the size that you ordered and see what happens.

Lilla Rose also sells some jewelry so you might want to check that out also while you are on Denise's site along with all the other hair products they carry.

You will find You-Pins, Hair Bands, Hair Sticks, Bobby Pins, O Rings and the Flexi's. The Flexi's come in mini, extra small, small, medium, large, extra large and mega!

So, whatever your hair type you will find a size that works for you or a loved one. The O Rings is something I may have to try next since Brandi is so crazy about her ponytails! Did not even think about that when I got this Flexi for her.

Man, see what happens when you don't think things through? Well, we are all human, and we all make mistakes and thru blogging, I have made a bunch! But, I learn from them so that is all that counts.

I do have a pair of the Bobby Pins that I won from another blogger and I can tell you that they are beautiful and you will be able to use them in lots of ways! I also have two Flexi's myself and every time I wear them I get alot of compliments about my hair so you will too! Take the plunge and try at least one, you won't be sorry.

Here is a list of events that Denise will be at if you live in Kentucky:

Vine Grove Autumn Daze in Vine Grove, KY on September 17th from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. at Vine Grove Optimist Park.

Radcliff Days in Radcliff, KY on September 24th from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Colvin Community Center, 230 Freedoms Way.

Glendale Crossing Festival in Glendale, KY on October 15, 2011 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Main Street.

Hardin County Extension Homemakers Holiday Bazaar in Elizabethtown, KY on November 12th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at 201 Peterson Drive.

Dickens of A Christmas, Vine Grove, KY on December 3rd from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Brown Street School behind Vine Grove City Hall.

Since I gave you such a detailed review last week I am not going to go into all the history part of the review but just give you Denise's information so you can get in touch with her and hopefully try one these amazing Flexi's or any of the other products she has to offer.

Disclaimer: Mary Bearden personally reviewed these products. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review, just a sample product. All opinions are mine and belong to me solely. My thoughts and opinions may differ from yours. The photo's used in this review were provided by me and my sometimes cranky camera but it was all me with no copied pictures