1Sep/124

Mia Mariu: Botanical Skin Care & Mineral Makeup – Product Review

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In truth, I don't wear a lot of makeup. When I do, it's usually mascara, maybe some shadow, and a touch of blush to give myself some color. That's it. I try to stay as "natural" looking as possible. However, more recently my love for makeup has been renewed. Maybe it's because I'm getting older (not that 25 is all that old), or maybe it's because my children are getting older and I'm tired of looking frumpy day in and day out.

When Mia Mariu, a botanical skin care and mineral makeup home business company, said they were looking for bloggers I was certainly happy to volunteer myself as a test subject. I was originally sent their Anti-aging Eye Treatment, Anti-aging Brightening Serum, and two Hydrating Stick Glosses in Beso and Capricho colors. I was a little worried that the anti-aging products weren't going to have a huge affect since I don't really feel as though I need "anti-aging" products. So, I was also then sent two Lose Mineral Eye Shadow Liners in Mora and Aquamarina, and their Mineral Blush in Flor de Canela.

I absolutely adore the Mia Mariu cosmetic colors. They're pretty much all right up my alley as far as looking mostly "natural" goes. Even the Aquamarina is a beautiful blue/green that gives that "pop" of color I sometimes enjoy wearing on my eyes when I'm feeling more adventurous.

I tend to struggle with finding the right lip colors, so I almost never wear anything with a stronger pigmentation. Maybe a mostly sheer gloss now and then. When I saw that Mia Mariu sent TWO different shades of their Hydrating Stick Glosses I was a tad nervous. I wasn't asked my skin tone, or for a picture of myself, so sending out lip colors was pretty much a shot in the dark for them. Well, they absolutely nailed it! And, when I went to look at the rest of their color options, I realized that almost all of them would have worked for me.
The Hydrating Stick Gloss in Beso is a gorgeous light pink color. I found that it's a perfect feminine color for daytime wear, or when I just want to feel a little more girly and a little less serious. It's great for my fair skin tone, and doesn't blend in like it might if I was a little tanner. The Hydrating Stick Gloss in Capricho is a darker, slightly more orange color. I think it looks fantastic with Fall colors (greens, darker purples, browns, etc.), and would be great for going out at night, or to the office. It's a "take me seriously" type color... if that makes sense.

"Our Hydrating Stick Gloss is a revolutionary hydrating product combining color and hydrating gloss in a stick form. Contains Vitamins A, C and E to nourish your lips as well as minerals and anti-oxidants to protect your lips. Hydrating Stick Gloss has a buttery, creamy feel that provides satin softness and long wear without feathering." ~ Mia Mariu

Compared to most lip products I've tried that don't guarantee a certain amount of wearable hours, I found that the Hydrating Stick Glosses will easily stay on for 2-3 hours without needing to reapply. And, even when the gloss feels that it's gone, I've noticed the color is still there and beautiful. Honestly I prefer cosmetics that have a shorter life than those lipsticks that swear they'll stay on for 12, 18, 24 hours. It worries me what they've had to put in those type of products that allows them to last that long. I also noticed that they smell great too. They don't have that synthetic cosmetic scent, and when eating I didn't notice a plastic-y taste that tends to accompany your food as it's going down the hatch.

When choosing eye shadow for myself, I usually stick with greens, purples, and browns. I thought all of the Mia Mariu Loose Mineral Shadow Liner colors were really pretty. They have a nice shimmer, and are just about all within the color range that I look for. I went with the Aquamarina mostly for something different, and I wanted to see what a lighter "green" would look like. I went with the Mora shadow too because it had that nice smokey purple color. I swear I can't say no to purple.

"Made with pure minerals and luxurious color pigments, thin silky formula provides long lasting coverage while gliding on softly and easily." ~ Mia Mariu

I've never tried mineral makeup before, and realized that I don't exactly have the correct brushes to fully utilize the Mia Mariu Loose Mineral Shadows. But even with my cheap shadow brush and my finger, the shadows applied easily, evenly, and really all around beautifully. The formula is truly thin just like their product description says, and it feels as though I haven't applied anything to my face. This is really great, because the more I am aware of the makeup that I've applied, the more I'll touch my face. I did think the Mora color was not as dark as I expected it to be, and a little less shimmery, but I think it makes a great base color, and "smokey" effect. I also blended it with the Aquamarina and really liked how the two colors contrasted, but seemed to compliment each other. I also liked that you couldn't really over-do the color on the first application. My photos show at least 2-3 layers so you can really see the color.

Blush for me is a little like picking the correct lip color. I debated back and forth between the Flor de Canela color and the Azucena, but ultimately went with Flor de Canela because I liked that it was a bit darker, and didn't seem quite like a product a 10-year-old girl would want to wear. Not that the color wasn't gorgeous! I'm just not a blonde, California, blue-eyed, surfer babe. (Stereotype much?)

"Made with pure natural minerals from the earth and combined with optimum color pigments, our silky vitamin-enriched Mineral Blush sweeps over cheek bones to create a luminous glow. Contains Vitamin A, C and E." ~ Mia Mariu

I really think the Flor de Canela Mineral Blush looks great with my skin tone. It blends in just enough so it doesn't look like I actually have makeup on, but gives me that warmer almost sun-kissed color in my cheeks, and hides small "defects" on my cheek bones. Once again I can't tell that there is makeup on my face. It's so light weight, and super easy to apply, but it does require a good "tap" of your brush to get the excess off before applying. I forgot the first time and ended up looking more clown-ish than natural.

As I said earlier, Mia Mariu also sent their Anti-aging Brightening Serum, and their Anti-aging Eye Treatment. I don't have much to say in the way of whether or not these products work. I've been using them the last two weeks, however I'm only 25 and I'm not super worried about wrinkles just yet. But, there were a few things that I did like about the products.

I was really surprised with how nice the serums smelled. I usually expect a product that is anti-anything to smell harsh, and full of chemicals. The other thing I liked, but was surprised to find, is that the serums are more like creams. They're not clear or runny, but a nice light weight cream. They're supposed to be applied in the morning and in the evening, which is good because I found they made my skin a little greasy/shiny for an hour or so after applying. But, if I don't have anywhere to go at night, or right away in the morning, it fully absorbs after a bit. I found my skin was more hydrated using these products, but I really cannot attest to a more even skin tone, or less eye wrinkles. But, if you're looking for products such as these, I would highly suggest giving them a try.

Overall, I'm really happy with the Mia Mariu cosmetic line. I think they're all good quality, priced fairly, and all have great pigments. If you're looking to get into direct sales, definitely check out Mia Mariu and their direct sales opportunities.

"Mía offers you a stylish and lucrative home based health and beauty social selling business opportunity. Earn money from personal sales, reorders, team sponsoring bonuses and enjoy fabulous trips and other prizes. Mía is made for today's woman with exceptional natural based products, convenient delivery to customers, no inventory requirements and lucrative earnings." ~ Mia Mariu

Make sure you find Mia Mariu on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest!

*I was provided Mia Mariu products free of charge in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

 

25Aug/127

Flat Iron Experts – Cortex Solo 450 Titanium 1in Zebra Flat Iron Product Review

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A couple of weeks ago Flat Iron Experts sent a Hot Tools Marcel 1" Curling Iron to review. It was a great product, and I'm thrilled that I was asked to review another item they carry so soon. This week I received the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium 1" Zebra Flat Iron! To be completely honest, I always thought a flat iron is just a flat iron. It doesn't matter if it's $200 or $20. After testing out the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Flat Iron I can tell you I was completely wrong in my assumptions. I'm beginning to think that what you pay for is what you truly get when it comes to hair styling tools and products.

I purchased a flat iron about 5 years ago from Walmart. I wanted something that would work, but also something that wasn't going to break the bank. I've used it maybe a handful of times because, to put it blatantly, it sucks. It pulls my hair, it takes forever to straighten even one tiny section, it's bulky, and not very comfortable to hold. When Flat Iron Experts asked if I'd like to try out a flat iron I was so darn tickled. FINALLY I could get rid of that piece of....

"Cortex Solo 450 Collection is new to the market and made for professionals in the beauty industry. You probably could have guessed this iron heats up to 450 degrees F, the hottest in the market. Adjustable heat and ergonomically designed this flat iron can be used on ultra thick frizzy hair or ultra thin hair. The results are amazing!" ~Flat Iron Experts

One of the many things I adore about Flat Iron Experts is that they carry professional quality products with a "lowest price guarantee". That means if you find the same item anywhere else online (excluding discount or sales prices) they'll match the price AND give you 5% off. The Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Zebra Flat Iron is listed on Flat Iron Experts for $269.99, however they have it on sale for only $129.99! They have this marked down by $140. That to me is just impressive when it comes to price. They also ship FREE to the USA and Canada with orders $50 or more.

Before using the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Flat Iron, I read the features. Wouldn't you? I have to say the features made me really excited to try this product!

Features:

  • Zebra Design Pattern
  • 1" Titanium plates for healthier hair and a high gloss shine
  • Professional Salon Model
  • Adjustable temperature to 450°F for easy use
  • Heats up in less than 6 seconds
  • Straighten, flip or curl your hair
  • The innovative PTC ceramic heater heats up in a flash, and stays at the temperature while styling
  • Negative Ions promote smoother, silkier hair
  • Far infrared technology distribute heat evenly, preventing damage
  • Sleek, ergonomic, non-slip grip designed for professional comfort
  • Variable temperature settings for all hair types
  • Hooked end for salon professional storage and easy hanging
  • Professional 360° swivel cord to prevent tangling
  • Dual Voltage - 110 - 240, 50/60 Hz
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty

I tried the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Flat Iron on both semi-wet hair, and 100% dry hair. I used the KQC Thermal Shine spray both times, but the results were best with 100% dry hair. I'm actually not even sure it's meant to be used on wet hair? Below, my "before" picture was taken after blow-drying and putting it up in a messy bun (so I could put my makeup on). I generally have super straight hair as it is, but it tends to get some weird kinks and waves in it.
This product worked FLAWLESSLY! Within a matter of a few seconds it was 400 degrees F, and I could start using it immediately. There are two lights that let you know when it's heating up, and when it's ready. I loved the length of the flat iron in general since it was a tad longer than the one I have currently collecting dust. It made it super easy to reach the hair in the back. The handle is extremely comfortable too, and overall the product is light weight - at least compared to my other one.

The two things I loved the most about the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Flat Iron is that, #1. It didn't pull my hair! No strands got caught anywhere in the product. And #2. It worked FAST. My hair was straight within a few minutes. I went over it a few more times to make sure everything was in order, but this was ridiculously quick. From the time I plugged it in and turned it on, to the time I was finished, it took maybe 5 to 10 minutes. My hair has this gorgeous shine after I use the Cortex Solo 450 Titanium Flat Iron, and it even feels healthy. My other flat iron seems to dry out my hair, and almost makes it feel a tad crispy.

Once again this is another fantastic product sold by Flat Iron Experts. Ever since finding out about this website, I've been telling everyone I know. Competitive prices, free shipping, and fabulous products - what's not to love? I'm not sure if there is another site out there that carries such an extensive selection of products and such great prices.

Make sure you find Flat Iron Experts on Facebook and Twitter!

* I received this product free of charge from Flat Iron Experts in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

11Aug/127

Flat Iron Experts – Hot Tools Professional Marcel Curling Iron 1in Product Review

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I've been growing out my hair for the last 3 years. I used to have this short pixie cut, and decided now that I'm a mom, I'd like to first of all have manageable hair that allows me to just put it up on a ponytail. But, now that my kids are getting a little older, and I'm less likely to get spit up on, or have my hair pulled, I've been wanting to play with my hair a little more. The only problem with this newfound interest in my hair, is that I don't have ANYTHING. I don't own a curling iron, I have one flat iron that isn't really my favorite, no hairspray, no styling ANYTHING.

I happened across a website called Flat Iron Experts and was blown away by their inventory. Not only do they sell flat irons, as their name would suggest, but they also sell curling irons, hair styling products, blow dryers, and even cosmetics. The great thing about this website is that they offer FREE shipping to the USA and Canada on all orders $50 or more. And, they have a lowest price guarantee, so you know you'll be getting the best price out there.

Flat Iron Experts offered to send me a Hot Tools Professional Marcel 1" Curling Iron to review. Honestly, I had no clue there were different handles for curling irons, so before I said yes I made sure I at least knew what "marcel" meant. There are two different handles; a marcel handle, and a spring handle. A marcel handle does not have any spring to it. It is 100% manual. Flat Iron Experts also sent a bottle of KQC Thermal Shine Spray, and a Flat Iron Experts Iron Holder. Talk about generous!
I have to admit that there was quite the learning curve with the marcel handle since I am by no means a professional. I had never used one before, much less heard of one, so I've spent the last few days practicing. Like I've said, I don't even own a curling iron. I haven't used one in probably more than five years, and what I did use was a spring handled iron. The first time I tried using the Hot Tools Professional Marcel Curling Iron I couldn't get my hair to curl... at all. I couldn't even get any wave going. I have a few friends who are stylists so I asked how in the world am I supposed to use this thing. It was suggested that I search for a "how to" video on You Tube. I found a GREAT one, and if you're new to marcel handles, I'd suggest you watch the video too.

Now, I never got my hair to look as great as the girl did in the video, but my guess is that she does this quite often, and I've only spent a few hours goofing around trying to get some results. Plus, my hair is also super straight, really fine, and never has taken to curling irons all that well. But, I'm up for trying anything new! The Hot Tools Marcel Curling Iron had several features that after using a few times, I really began to enjoy. Practically everything on this curling iron spins. The handle spins (and locks back into place), the lever spins, and even the are where the cord is attached spins. The barrel heats up ridiculously fast and heats up to 430 degrees. The handle is also extremely comfortable, and the product just FEELS like quality. Does that make sense? You know how some products you buy you can just tell by handling it that it is going to break within a matter of days. Flat Iron Experts normally sells the Hot Tools Marcel 1" Curling Iron for $119.99, but it is currently on sale for $45.95!
Features
:

  • Patented Pulse Technology® for Gets Hot. Stays Hot performance
  • 85 watts
  • Variable heat settings with built-in rheostat control up to 430 degrees
  • Fast heat up
  • Soft-Grip textured handle
  • Powerful spring clamp
  • Extra-high heat
  • 24K gold - plated barrel
  • Heavy-duty long-life heating element
  • Foldaway safety stand
  • Pilot light
  • 8-foot professional cord
  • On / Off switch
  • Solid-state circuitry
  • AC 110V 60Hz for use in USA/Canada
  • One year warranty

Flat Iron Experts recommends the KQC Thermal Shine Spray as a heat styling accessory and has ranked it as the best heat protector. I was a little skeptical since I really hate putting extra products in my hair. Anything that I'm supposed to leave in make my hair greasy, and you can usually feel a build up of gunk. I LOVE this spray! It makes my hair so shiny with none of the grease or added build up of stuff. My hair feels smooth, soft, and just looks great after using the spray. All it takes is a tiny bit while your hair is still wet. Then all I did was blow dry my hair, brush it, and start curling. If the KQC Thermal Shine Spray is this good, I'd like to see what Flat Iron Experts suggests for hair spray.

"KQC Thermal Shine Spray is an ion enriched polishing complex formulated for superior heat protection and ultra gloss hair shine. Lightweight, non-greasy micro mist spray that eliminates frizz, softens and polishes hair without build up. Designed for all hair types. Use with flat iron, curling iron or hair dryers." ~ Flat Iron Experts

Flat Iron Experts also sent their iron holder. Unfortunately I don't even have a counter anywhere in my bathroom, so that is one product that will probably go unused until I can make space on some shelves. However, I really like that it has suction cups on the bottom of it, and it seems to be a nice way to store your iron in between uses. It keeps it from getting banged around, and protects a good portion of the barrel.

Overall, I'm VERY happy with all of the products Flat Iron Experts sent! I can't wait until I've mastered the marcel handle, and that KQC spray is one of the best hair products I've ever used. With their great prices this is definitely one online store I suggest you check out if you're looking for any hair or beauty products!

You can find Flat Iron Experts on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

*I received products free of charge from Flat Iron Experts in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

14Jul/126

Knot Genie – Detangling Brush Product Review

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I don't know about you, but brushing my daughter's hair can be a nightmare. She's lucky that her hair is straight and fine, or else I think we'd be in for an apocalypse each time. She screams and cries"OUCH!" through every knot which sends my stress levels through the roof, and then having to pin her down just agitates me even further. Just. Sit. STILL!

Just like many other products, I had heard of the Knot Genie before. I think I had initially seen it advertised on TV and thought it was a crock of sh..., but it did stir the curious side of me. It's hard to believe something is as good as advertised, and then having to buy it to test it out first always makes me a little hesitant. That could be good money that I've just tossed down the drain. I contacted Knot Genie several months ago to inquire about reviewing their Detangling Brush. One of the great things about my job is that I get to test out a product in exchange for my opinion. I have a lot of opinions, so this is perfect for me. Anyway, I've been waiting since April to get this product in, and I have to say it was worth the wait!

"The magic trick behind the Knote Genie is one we are happy to reveal. It all has to do with the different lengths of teeth on the brush. When brushing, they bend just right, to chently untangle the hair. And because of this lack of stress, the hair's cuticle stays unharmed... revealing the smoothest, shiniest hair you've ever seen. Voila!" ~ Knot Genie

Knot Genie sent me their Puff of Purple full-size Knot Genie Detangling Brush. The larger size is great for adults, but they do make a Teeny-Genie for children to use. It may be slightly big for people with smaller hands, but it was just right for me. The cloud shape of the Knot Genie allows for easy handling, and fits wonderfully in the palm of your hand. It kind of reminds me of the shape of a computer mouse. It is very lightweight. I expected it to be significantly heavier, and I think that's something I would have preferred in general. I like a little substance to my brushes. However, this does not detract in the slightest from the actual functionality of the brush. In fact, it truly worked like a dream on both dry and wet hair!
Now, does that look like a child who is having a fit?! The Knot Genie's combing teeth are very soft and easily bend. I tried the brush on myself, and since I'm used to putting some force into brushing my hair, I found the teeth a little uncomfortable at first. It didn't take long for me to figure out that even the gentlest of brushing motions actually detangle the hair and this keeps the teeth from pushing too hard against the scalp. It may take additional brush strokes to remove the knots fully, however it is considerably less painful, and the tugging is minimal.

Usually when I brush my hair I lose a LOT. I have to clean out my brush each time I use it, and the massive amount of hair I pull out is rather distressing. When I tried the Knot Genie on my hair it was still semi-wet and hadn't been brushed for almost 48 hours. (Give me a break. To save time I generally just put my hair up right out of the shower.) I found the best trick was not to go after all of the hair at once, but separate small portions while brushing and work through those first. By the time I was done, I counted 3 hairs in the brush. I'm sure that's not a usual result, however I was extremely happy. Even the second time I used it, there were considerably less pulled out hairs when I was done. As a side thought I wondered what it might be like to have this product with an actual brush handle. My hair is very long, and it's a little harder to brush the back of my head because of the length. Needless to say I cannot express how impressed I am with the overall function of the Knot Genie. I don't dread brushing my hair or my daughter's hair anymore. She still doesn't exactly enjoy having her hair brushed, but she at least tolerates it and no longer sounds like a banshee!

Make sure you find Knot Genie on Facebook and Twitter! Knot Genie has offered a Puff of Purple Knot Genie for a giveaway! Giveaway is open to legal residents of the USA who are 18+. The giveaway will run for approximately one week, and readers will be able to enter [HERE] during the time that it is live.

* I received a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

14Jul/120

Exergen – TemporalScanner Thermometer Product Review

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I'm sure we've all been there. Your child is not feeling well. Said child is probably fussy, cranky, and wants nothing more than to be snuggled and otherwise left alone. Taking your child's temperature in these circumstances is most often a pain in the neck to put it nicely. Most young children haven't figured out how the mouth thermometers work, and if your child is coping with an ear infection, the last thing they want is having a metal piece jammed into their ear even if it is only for a second. I personally avoid the rectal method, and let's face it, the armpit method is just not accurate enough. Thankfully my kids are almost never sick, and I can gauge if they're running a fever by kissing their foreheads, but I know at some point I'm going to want an accurate reading.

I had heard about the Exergen TemporalScanner Thermometer several months ago, but had remained a little skeptical. Supposedly this temperature reading device was supposed to take an accurate reading just from being swiped across the forehead. When I was given the chance to actually review an Exergen TemporalScanner I jumped at the chance. We were tired of having to replace those plastic cones for the ear thermometer we had, and as I said, the mouth thermometer just wasn't cutting it. I needed a solution, and Exergen provided exactly that.

"The TemporalScanner Thermometer is a totally non-invasive system with advanced infrared technology providing maximum ease of use with quick, consistently accurate measurements. Advanced, patented technology measures temperatures with a gentle stroke across the forehead." ~ Exergen

The Exergen TemporalScanner is packaged with the scanner, a small plastic cap for the top of the scanner, and a 9-volt battery. That's it! That's all you need. It is definitely a nice bonus having the battery come with the product, and no pieces that will have to be replaced after each use. The TemporalScanner is a nice size, and doesn't feel cheap. I was very impressed with the ease of use! There is one button. You don't have to wait for the TemporalScanner to start up either, and the instructions were very simple. It's such a small thing, but it's great that they included the instructions as a sticker on the back of the product. If someone happens to be watching your children and needs to take their temperature, they can easily figure it out with the instructions right there. Want to know how easy it is to use this product?

Step 1. "With probe flush on center of forehead, depress button, keep depressed."

Step. 2. "Lightly slide probe across forehead into hairline."

Step 3. "If perspiring, lift probe from forehead, touch on neck just behind ear lobe."

Step 4. "Release button, read temperature. Measure arterial temperature."

Press, slide, release! I think I can handle that. If you need to try again, just wait 30 seconds and the TemporalScanner will be ready to go. The TemporalScanner will shut off automatically after 30 seconds, but you can easily quickly push the button to shut it off immediately. Cleaning the scanner is super easy too. Just take a Q-Tip with rubbing alcohol on it, and rub down the the sensor and probe until it is shiny again. Although my kids haven't been sick since receiving the TemporalScanner, I tested everyone's temperature the day I got it. As far as I can tell, it truly is accurate. My temperature tends to run a little low, while my childrens' tends to run slightly higher. The TemporalScanner adequately reflected these differences during my test run with the product.
The benefits of using the Exergen TemporalScanner over any other form of temperature taking method is rather significant in my opinion. The scanner measures your core body temperature by capturing the emitted heat from the skin over the temporal artery. Your core temperature is generally an entire degree higher than your oral temperature, and two degrees higher than one's underarm temperature. Even though using the rectal method is accurate and also measures the core body temperature, the Exergen TemperalScanner can accurately identify quickly changing temperatures whereas the rectal method cannot. According to the information Exergen provided, "The lag time could be up to 60-90 minutes on infants up to 12 months old when the temperature is rapidly changing."

The Exergen TemporalScanner is not just for children. It is so simple to use on yourself or another sick member of your family. And it is fast! Overall it takes only 2 seconds to get an accurate reading. And we all know that even as adults we can be pretty big babies when we're not feeling well, and the last thing we want to do is have to sit there with a mouth thermometer that may or may not work.

The Exergen TemporalScanner - the only thermometer manufactured in the USA - features a red LED light, and a soft beeping sound that indicates a correct reading. The scanner itself is ergonomically designed for your hand. In addition, the TemporalScanner meets and exceeds all regulatory requirements including those from the FDA, ASTM, and UL.

So, it's obvious this is a really great product, and something your children (and probably you) could definitely benefit from. But, the biggest question is, "How much does this cost?" The Exergen ThemporalScanner has a manufacturer's suggested retail price of $50 or less, and you can easily find it at WalMart for $32.18 (online price). You can also find the Exergen TemporalScanner at several additional retail locations including Rite Aid, Costco, Sam's Club, Toys R Us, Babies R U, Walgreens, and Drugstore.com.

This is definitely one product I would suggest for any parent or caregiver! It's fast, accurate, easy to use, and completely non-invasive. Admittedly my daughter is a little finicky about things touching her head and was not thrilled with the scanner at first. However after a few tries she became more comfortable and finally sat still enough to let me use it.

Make sure you find Exergen on Facebook and Twitter. Every once in awhile they have a sweepstakes happening on their website as well.

In addition, one lucky DealPeddler reader will WIN an Exergen TemporalScanner! Giveaway is open to legal residents of the USA who are 18+. Giveaway will run for approximately 1 week. Readers will be able to enter [HERE] during the time the giveaway is live.

* I was provided a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

2Jun/1220

Thermal-Aid – “Buckley” Bear Product Review

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I have to admit, I've been trying for MONTHS to win a Thermal-Aid Bear. I frequently check out the Thermal-Aid Facebook page, and enter every giveaway I see. I also try to share their giveaways with you because these look like a great product to have. I even submitted the name "Hugo" in one of their contests to name their new Hippo. Needless to say, I haven't won. But, that's OK, because Thermal-Aid has given me the opportunity to review their Thermal-Aid "Buckley" Bear! Eeep! Yes, sometimes I get excited about little things, but being a mom, I think I have a lot of reasons to be excited about this particular product.
About a month and a half ago or so, my daughter managed to really hurt her ankle. We aren't the type of parents to panic every time our children hurt themselves, but this was different, so we took her to the ER. Her poor little ankle was swollen, and she was refusing to walk on it. Normally she bounces back within 10 seconds and is back to her power-house self, but not this time. Of course we were told her ankle needed to be iced in order to help keep the swelling down, and I knew right then and there I was going to regret not having the Thermal-Aid Bear.

"Our researchers worked closely with milling engineers from the largest agribusiness companies in the world to create a line of products, using a unique process, which allows a specialized corn to hold temperatures for long periods of time. This process removes the germ from the kernel, thus removing virtually all the moisture and preventing mold or fungi from forming. The entire process hardens the corn segments, causing an even temperature in each segment, and creating extended temperature retainment (hot and cold). This also extends the life of the corn beyond that of the material it’s sewn into!" ~ Thermal-Aid

Our ice packs aren't the best. When they're frozen, they are frozen solid. They don't flex very well, and the worst part is that you cannot put them directly on the skin because in a short amount of time it starts to hurt. Putting a towel over it doesn't help all that much either and makes it more cumbersome. Then, throw in the fact that she's 2.5 and doesn't sit still, the ice pack was just not going to work. The Thermal-Aid Bear has two functions. First (and I'll get to this in a bit) it can be used as a heat pack. Secondly, the Thermal-Aid bear can be frozen and used as a cold pack. Within 5-6 hours of freezing, it's cold enough to use for the reduction of swelling, and fever reducing, but the biggest bonus is that this can be applied directly to the skin right out of the freezer.

The Thermal-Aid Bear also works as a great heat pack for the kiddos, or even yourself if you don't fancy rice packs. The bear is made from 100% natural cotton, and is sooo soft. Instead of rice, Thermal-Aid uses specially engineered corn. The corn holds the heat longer, but doesn't overheat (as long as you follow the heating instructions). It seems as if the bear heats from the inside out, so you don't have to wait for it to cool down. I like mine a little warmer, so I put in in for an extra 15-30 seconds. The heat felt great. It was a nice all-over warmth that quickly makes its way into your sore muscles.

I'm anticipating that the Thermal-Aid Bear will get a lot of use this winter when my kiddos get colds. The heat will be great to comfort them when they're feeling a bit chilly, and the coolness will work wonders if they have a fever. You can tell from the photographs that my daughter loves her "Buckley"! This will be much easier to use than an over-heated rice pack or a way-too-cold ice pack. The Bear is meant for children ages 3 and up, however if my son needs it, I'll definitely use it on him under supervision. The other great thing about the Thermal-Aid Bear is that it is washable! I think this is a really adorable and useful product. I'm so happy we now have a Thermal-Aid Bear in our home!

I also wanted to say that Thermal-Aid also makes products specifically for adults and pets, so make sure you check out their web site. The adult Thermal-Aid packs are "...clinically proven to reduce fever, sunburn, earaches, back & neck pain, flu symptoms, sprains, bee stings, headaches, sore muscles, growing pains, insomnia, and much more." As adorable as the little bear is, I have to say I'd feel pretty silly if anyone saw me using it other than my husband and kids. But, it's probably only a matter of time until the kiddos start making fun of me because I'm "Mom".

If you haven't yet, make sure you find Thermal-Aid on Facebook and Twitter. They're very interactive with the fans, and host a lot of great giveaways.

Thermal-Aid is offering THREE Bears for a giveaway. That means there will be THREE winners! Giveaway will run for approximately a week. Entrants must live in the USA and be 18+. You'll be able to enter [HERE] when the giveaway is live.

*I was given a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

2Jun/128

KLUTCHclub – KLUTCHbox Product Review

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Sometimes a little inspiration and motivation is needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This is certainly something I struggle with myself. After my first child I bounced back and looked better than I did before I had her. After second baby, I look like a deflated balloon. My day consists of sitting the majority of the day and running my blog. I am modern day mommy couch potato, and it sucks! For this reason, I am really glad I have had the opportunity to review a KLUTCHbox from KLUTCHclub.

KLUTCHclub is a monthly health and wellness subscription service that provides $60+ worth of health and wellness related products for $18 or less. Give your motivation and your body a kick-start every month with a new box filled with fun, healthy, and yummy goodies specifically tailored to your fitness goals. It's really easy to get started. You just head over to the KLUTCHclub web site, create your profile based on your goals, and that's it! Every month they'll send you a brand new box with some really awesome stuff in it. Then you can fill out product surveys which you will be rewarded for in KLUTCHdollars that you can redeem for FREE KLUTCHclub boxes.

"Get tips and tricks from "Healthy Living" delivered by our fitness, nutrition and lifestyle experts, and share your own experience and favorite products with the rest of the KLUTCHclub community." ~KLUTCHclub

KLUTCHclub sent me their April "Spring clean your body" KLUTCHbox valued at more than $60. Many of the brands included I had never heard of before which was great! I love finding new things to try, and often that means finding new things to buy because they turn into "must-haves". My April box included Kristin McGee's Power Yoga DVD, a $25 Gift Card to YogaHyde.com, HyDrive Energy Drink Mix, Zico Pure Premium Coconut Water, Tea Forte Skin-Smart Tea, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Kind Bar, Enjoy Life Plentil Chips, Enjoy Life Seed & Fruit Mix, Barlean's Organic Oils (for consumption), and Shea Terra Organics Rose Hips Black Soap Deep Pore Facial Wash. That is a LOT of healthy greatness packed into one box, and a very impressive variety!

"Get Ready. Your KLUTCH has arrived!"

My absolute favorite inclusion was the Power Yoga DVD. I really enjoy yoga, however the last time I did any practicing was back in college. I even considered becoming a yoga instructor. That's how much I enjoyed it. The YogaHyde.com gift card was a nice touch too. I checked out their web site, and was a little sad to see that the biggest discount I could get with the $25 gift card was only 50%, but I did find a pair of yoga practice pants that I may just have to get. And, spending $25 instead of $50 is still awesome.

Thankfully no one in my family has peanut or gluten allergies, however I was thrilled to see that my box included several nut-free and gluten-free treats. Enjoy Life's Plentil Chips are labeled as "allergy friendly" and are free of wheat, soy, tree nuts, eggs, peanuts, shellfish, diary, and fish. They're also only 100 calories per their individual serving bag, and really tasty. The Enjoy Life Seed & Fruit Mix is labeled as "Made in a dedicated nut and gluten-free facility." The Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Kind Bar is also labeled as gluten and wheat free, as well non GMO.

I have to say KLUTCHclub had perfect timing when sending their April KLUTCHbox. I had been looking for an organic facial cleanser; something stronger than my regular organic soaps. The Shea Terra Organics Rose Hips Black Soap is labeled as a 100% Natural, Deep Pore Facial Cleanser and as Micro-dermabrasion in a bottle. I am absolutely tickled that this was included in the KLUTCHbox!

Personally I think all of the awesomeness they crammed into their KLUTCHbox is wonderful, and definitely worth the $18! So, make sure you find them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and if you want, you can sign up for their monthly subscription program [HERE].

AND KLUTCHclub is offering a KLUTCHbox for a giveaway! Giveaway will run for approximately a week. Must live in the USA and be 18+ to enter. Rafflecopter can be found [HERE] during the duration of the giveaway.

* I was sent a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

30May/127

Wildwood SoapWorks – Lavender Lime Lip Balm Product Review

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Give me lime over lemon any day! Something about it makes me think of margaritas, Mexico, sunshine, the beach, and all things yummy. As I was browsing the Wildwood SoapWorks web site for new goodies I want to share with you all, my eye was caught by their Lavender Lime Lip Balm. Lavender I can take or leave, but I had no idea you could mix lavender with lime and create something so wonderful. I have high expectations at this point for Wildwood SoapWorks, so I figured they probably wouldn't let me down on this product either. Let's just say it was a BAD day when my daughter lost it! I did find it again a few weeks later *whew*, but I actually missed having it during those days.

What an absolutely astounding formula! We use virgin hemp seed oil, avocado oil, calendula-infused high oleic sunflower oil, shea butter and just enough organic beeswax to hold it all together. Unlike those "other" lip balms that leave a layer of wax on your lips, this blend of certified organic oils seeps deep into the tissue layers of your lips, healing and sealing from the inside out. We use virgin hemp seed oil, avocado oil, calendula-infused high oleic sunflower oil, shea butter and just enough organic beeswax to hold it all together. Using only a small amount of therapeutic grade lavender and lime essential oils, you will not taste it when you eat or drink. Come back to the natural way of doing things and experience skincare as nature intended! ~ Wildwood SoapWorks

I wouldn't consider myself a lip balm aficionado, but I do know what I like, and of course what I don't. I like my lip balms to moisturize (obviously), leave a little bit of shine, and maintain a silky smoothness for more than 5 minutes. I also would prefer a lip balm that does it's job, and one where the scent doesn't give me a headache, or taste like wax. Ever have that happen? It's awful. You can't wipe the stuff off your lips fast enough and then it just lingers. I do not like the medicated lip balms because of the smell, and because that slight stinging sensation.

The second this arrived, I opened it immediately. I think I was the most excited to try this product. I was very surprised to find that it had mostly a lime scent to it. In fact, the lavender is almost non-existent (in my opinion), however that's just the way I wanted it to be! So of course I put it on. It literally glides across your lips. So smooth with NO waxy residue! I really loved that it STAYS on your lips too and has a great amount of shine and gloss. I don't need a chemical infused gloss, or a lipstick to make my lips look healthy and attractive. No headaches here either. I kind of wish it tasted like lime, however I have a feeling that would require artificial flavoring and that is something I don't want. So, the lack of taste was also a great feature, and I really have no desire to add an additional flavor into my food or drinks while I'm eating.

Of course whatever mommy does my mini-me wants to do as well. She happens to have chapped lips constantly, so I figured the real test would be to see if this actually works without any medication in it. Less than 24 hours later I noticed a huge different. About 75% of the chapped-ness disappeared after one use. Wow! I've only used it on her since then a handful of times, and her lips look as healthy as ever. I absolutely love that I can use this on her without worrying about her eating it. Plus, she likes to take my stuff and use them herself (she's quite the independent 2.5 year old), and I know she's safe even if she devours the entire tube.

I've now hidden the Lavender Lime Lip Balm from her so we can avoid losing it again! The only problem with that is, whatever I "hide" for safe keeping ends up someplace that I can never find it. Would that mean it's lost? :)

Anyway, I know a bunch of you said you'd love a chance at winning the Wildwood SoapWorks Lavender Lime Lip Balm, so here is your chance this week! Four winners will each receive a tube of Lavender Lime Lip Balm. Giveaway is open to residents of the USA and Canada. The giveaway will run approximately 10 days. You'll be able to enter [HERE] when the giveaway is live.

Make sure you find Wildwood SoapWorks on Facebook and Twitter too! You never know what they're cooking up and like to do their own giveaways too. Plus sign up for their newsletter [HERE] on the left hand side at the bottom of the page, and stay up to date on the weekly deals, discounts, and more!

* I received a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

19May/122

Hazelaid – Baltic Amber “Super Butter” Teething Necklace Product Review

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Have you ever heard of Amber Teething Necklaces? I hadn't until a few months before my son was born. While my daughter was teething we always used baby Tylenol, and Orajel. This ended up causing us some problems because whenever she'd start cutting new teeth, she would also get a cold; a runny nose, coughing, snotty, mucusy cold. The Orajel always made her drool even more, and this created so much extra saliva and mucus build-up she'd cough to the point of vomiting and choking. Then the FDA put out a warning on products containing Benzocaine (the numbing agent in Orajel), and the warning terrified me. I'm not one to spook easily when the FDA says "this is bad", but this one had me searching for another option that did not include Benzocaine. Luckily for me I have a friend who had been using an amber necklace on her daughter and raved how well it worked. I asked my husband what he thought, and of course he was a HUGE skeptic at first. I decided that it was still worth a try, and purchased a necklace. My daughter was an early teether and I didn't want to be caught by surprise.

Hazelaid is a fabulous site to purchase Baltic Amber Teething jewelry, and Hazelwood jewelry. For the purpose of this review they sent me a Children's 12" semi-polished Super Butter Baltic Amber Necklace. I've heard the lighter in color, and the less polished the amber is, the stronger the affects. (The first necklace I purchased was a polished, darker colored amber from another company, and we have been very pleased with it.) So, we decided to request the Super Butter Baltic Amber this time around to compare the two. Hazelaid's site that says for teething purposes the color and clarity really doesn't matter, but I didn't see the harm in giving something new a try. If he's anything like my daughter, he's going to cut 2-4 teeth at a time.

My son has cut THREE teeth since we received the Super Butter Baltic Amber Necklace. The third one, literally, just showed up this morning (5/19). I had no idea he was teething again! He has been nomming on things a little more than usual, but I figured he was just getting more and more curious about his surroundings. He's been sleeping soundly, and is just his usual happy-go-lucky smiling self. Does that look like a picture of a teething baby to you? No excess drool, no crying, no fever, and no runny nose. Amazing! Plus he looks so stinkin' adorable sporting his Hazelaid necklace - then again I'm by no means objective when it comes to his cuteness.

As you can see, the 12" Super Butter Baltic Amber Necklace is the perfect size. It's light weight, and sits comfortably around his neck. He never plays with it, and probably doesn't even realize it's there. I'm not too concerned about him wearing it at night, but I know some other parents may not want their kids to have a necklace on. Hazelaid also sells Baltic Amber anklets/bracelets. I purchased an anklet from Hazelaid just in case he starts tugging on his necklace, but I haven't needed to use it yet. These necklaces are designed for children to wear, which is extremely important to me.

"Available in 5.5” bracelet/anklets, and 12” & 14” necklaces.  All three sizes are on string, are knotted between each bead, and use a plastic twist clasp system that mimics two beads." ~ Hazelaid

I've been told that the way to get the best results is to keep the necklace under the clothing. This allows the amber to warm up and release the natural oils which then are absorbed by the skin and work as an analgesic. These are NOT for chewing! However, we have great results with him just wearing it - under his clothing or not. I have not needed to use any Tylenol since we started using the Baltic Amber Necklace. I love that he doesn't need any additional medications to get him through, what is usually considered an "awful", phase of his childhood. I recommend anyone with a teething child purchase an amber necklace!

Hazelwood and Baltic Amber are not just remedies for teething children! I also purchase a Hazelwood & Amber necklace for my daughter, and a Hazelwood anklet for myself because I heard that Hazelwood helps with eczema, and heartburn along with several other ailments. The little heartburn I do get seems to have improved, however the redness on my daughter's cheeks and arms has not. That's not to say these don't work. It was an experiment since she doesn't actually have eczema, but I wanted to see if it would improve the redness. She still likes to wear her necklace as a gorgeous piece of jewelry, and I haven't taken my anklet off since I received it since I love the looks of it. You can read all testimonies on the Hazelaid site [HERE].

I'm so excited to be able to tell you that Hazelaid has offered ALL DealPeddler & Eco-Style Life readers a 10% open ended discount. Just use code Eco10 at checkout! It would be great if you'd head over to their Facebook page and Twitter page to say thanks if you use the code.

Hazelaid has also offered a $25 gift certificate as a giveaway! This means you'll be able to get at least 1 necklace for FREE if you win. Giveaway is open worldwide! Must be 18+ to enter. You'll be able to enter the giveaway [HERE] during the duration that it is live.

I was given a product for free to facilitate this review. All opinions and experiences are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.

16May/120

Wildwood SoapWorks – Golden Slumbers Sleep Balm Product Review

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I don't know what in the world has gotten into my children lately, but I promise you I had more sleep when they were newborns compared to now. I am lucky if they sleep clear through until 5:30am these days, but usually at least one of them is up around 2am, and last week we were all up every day by 4:30am. I am tired! The thought of Benadryl and Tylenol PM has crossed my mind (obviously I would never do that), but I really needed something to help out a little. Thankfully, Wildwood SoapWorks sent their Golden Slumbers Sleep Balm in the last box of awesomeness I received. We've been testing it out for a few days, and although we've had mixed results, I think it is helping my kids sleep longer, and more soundly.

"Why lay awake at night counting farm animals when this natural formula of organic ingredients can help find Dreamland? Into a base of certified organic extra virgin olive oil, we blend a combination of herbs and therapeutic grade essential oils, all of which having calming and relaxing attributes. Rub some on your forehead, temples, and under the nose…say "goodnight" as you drift into a blissful state of restful sleep. Great for kids as well!" ~ Wildwood SoapWorks

I'm a bit of a skeptic by nature, and it doesn't help that my son is going through a growth spurt, but I am also not one to give up really easily, so this is a product I will continue to use until I know for a fact, one way or the other, if it's working. But, for right now I can gladly say my kids slept until 6:30am this morning without waking up in the middle of the night. So, that is good enough proof for now to say this product is definitely worth a solid try!

The Golden Slumbers sleep balm is made with organic extra virgin olive oil, beeswax, avocado oil, ground lavender flowers, rose petals, lemon balm, mugwort, chamomile, and essential oils of high altitude Bulgarian lavender, bergamot, rosemary, and natural vitamin E. All of these flowers and herbs just sound so relaxing, and the Sleep Balm smells fantastic. It really does. Every night, about 10 minutes before I put my kids to bed, I rub a little on their upper lip area, their temples, and their forehead. They're both asleep within 10 minutes. They usually went to sleep easily, but with the use of the sleep balm we've had a greater amount of success at getting them to sleep faster, and with less whining and tossing.

They were given cold medication a few of those nights because they were sick, but even though the meds were supposed to wear off in 4 hours, they continued to sleep through the night. I wonder if perhaps this helped with their sinuses too? Either way it made their colds seem less drastic when it came to sleeping at night. My daughter loves it when I put it on her, and it's becoming a nice, calming nightly routine before it's time to get into bed and read a story. I did notice the one night I forgot to apply onto the kiddos that they slept horrendously. We're talking the 9 month old up at 2am (thank goodness he went back to sleep), the 2.5 year old up at 4:30 am wide awake thinking it was a good time to start her day.

I was really surprised that the Golden Slumbers Sleep Balm came in such a small container. I expected at least a full ounce if not more, but this stuff lasts a long time. Even with two kids using it for a week I have 99% of it left. This is one thing I love about all of the Wildwood SoapWorks products I've tried so far; they all last considerably longer than I expected them to.

Obviously the Golden Slumbers Sleep Balm is not just for children, however I haven't needed to use it on myself yet, and my husband sleeps like a rock. But, if you or your children need a little extra soothing and help in the sleep department, this is definitely a product you should try. It's natural, food grade, and smells so darn good I could wear it as a perfume.

Wildwood SoapWorks is giving you all a chance at winning a tin of Golden Slumpers Sleep Balm this week. Once again there will be 4 winners. Entrants must live in the USA or Canada (yes these are now open to our northern neighbors), and must be 18+. The giveaway will run for approximately 1 week, and you'll be able to enter [HERE] when it is live.

*I received a product for free in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% mine. See Disclosure Policy.