Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Product Review: L'Oreal Cleansing Balm

L'Oreal Cleansing Balm, EverCreme photo by Cee Martinez

The wonderful folks at Influenster.com sent me L'Oreal's Cleansing Balm free of charge for testing purposes. I was pretty excited because I really loved it when they sent me Clairol's Hair Food to test and to great results.

This "Cleansing Balm" had a lot in common with the Clairol Hair Food initially. They're both described as deep conditioners that would add softness and moisture to the hair without weighing it down. They're both complete with instructions that encourage you to rub it into your scalp for the most benefit.

Now, my hair is very fine and prone to dryness. I generally use pure coconut oil for my scalp and use the Clairol Hair Food for the ends of my hair because despite what it promised it weighed my hair down if used on the scalp.

The L'Oreal Cleansing Balm promises to replace shampoo. It says it is safe enough to use every day as a moisturizing cleanser. That sounded like a pretty cool idea to me because I have been looking into ways to shampoo less and the "Poo Free" home remedies of baking soda, or shampoo bars, or just plain not washing have been disastrous for me.

I used the Cleansing Balm only three days in a row before giving up on any hope of it replacing shampoo. My hair from the chin down was very shiny and soft, just as promised, but my scalp and my hair at the scalp was greasy and weighed down and just... gross. I couldn't even last a week trying it in replacement of shampoo. I had to do a vinegar rinse and then shampoo to get my hair looking decent. What a disappointment!! 

When I used it every few days as a deep conditioner for the ends of my hair, I was happy with the results. Just like the Clairol Hair Food it does make my hair shiny and soft and is basically a really good deep conditioner. I just couldn't use it to replace my shampoo.

Overall I give it 3 of 5 stars. The 3 stars is because it does work really well as a deep conditioner and I really like it as such, I can't give it five though, because it could never replace my shampoo.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Product Review: #FiestaVoxBox from Influenster.com

Image by Cee Martinez

Yay! It's VoxBox from Influenster time! 

This time it's the #FiestaVoxBox which came stocked with tons of nice goodies.

From snacks to beauty products, this box had it all.

There were coupon vouchers for a free Bloomin' Onion from Outback Steakhouse, a loaf of Healthfull Bread from Orowheat, and a free pint of sour cream from Daisy. Who doesn't love free food? 

The Bloomin' Onion was a fun and delicious treat to share with my family and friends, and did add a  little something extra to a nice night out. The Healthfull Bread was quite nice and I wouldn't mind continuing to buy it for the extra nutrition from the whole grains. The Daisy sour cream was very good and I used it to make dips, and on homemade tacos.

Also included in the box was the Premier Protein bar in the Yogurt Peanut Crunch flavor. It was delicious and filling and as fun as a candy bar but with all the goodness of a health bar,

Image by Cee Martinez

Now for the beauty products!

Sauve Skin Solutions Cocoa Butter and Shea lotion, Not Your Mother's Beach Babe shampoo and conditioner, New York Color's Skin Bronzer, and Boots No. 7 Night Cream all were included in the Fiesta Vox Box.

All of the products mentioned can be seen on my Pinterest Board.

The Suave Skin Solutions Cocoa Butter and Shea lotion was very nice. The bottle is a big one, woot! The lotion is great on my legs and arms, keeping everything soft and smooth for a nice long time. For some odd reason it did not soften my hands the way I would like it to. I stuck to my normal hand cream for that, so for that I can't say the lotion was a slamdunk for me.

The Not Your Mother's Beach Babe shampoo and conditioner were satisfying. The shampoo moisturized as promised, it is made with coconut milk and had a nice luxorious feel. The conditioner was also very potent and I liked it BUT the instructions said to use it from scalp to tips, but when I used it on my scalp it left my hair weighed down and oily. I would recommend using it on the lower part of your hair, concentrating on the tips.

The Boots No. 7 Night Cream was very nice. It moisturized nicely and but didn't leave me greasy. I would definitely keep on buying it and was glad that a coupon for a discount on a Boots No. 7 product was included.

The New York Color Bronzer was a nice product. It is a light powder with a tiny bit of shimmer and it was perfect for a dressy evening out.

This has been one of my favorite vox boxes from Influenster.

I'd like to thank Influenster.com for sending me all of these products complimentary for testing purposes!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Product Review: Resource Natural Spring Water #RefreshWithResource

I received a complete bottle of Resource Natural Spring water from Influenster.com free for testing purposes.

Who doesn't like water? Water is awesome, right?

So I took the bottle with me to work and plugged away at it through the day.

Resource advertises itself with "It's more than hydration, it's total Electrolytenment." 

Its major selling points are being sustainably sourced, packaging that is 50% recycled, and that it is full of naturally occurring electrolytes. That's all well and good, can't knock that.

The water tasted clean with no after taste, which can sometimes happen with bottled or tap water depending on whatever is accidentally or intentionally being put into it. 

I can't say there's anything that I found particularly special about it though, either. It would take A LOT for me to get passionate about a bottled water. I'm the type who is not bothered by drinking from a tap, and would rather just carry water around in a refillable bottle. If I am going to pay money for hydration, I would prefer it came in the form of tea or something else that qualifies as a "treat".

That said, there's nothing wrong with this product, it's just not something that really inspired much passion from me. For anyone else however, who is nuts over bottled water. Go for it. It's not bad. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Influenster VoxBox Review: #ClearProof from Mary Kay

Check it out folks! 

The latest Vox Box I received from Influenster.com is the Mary Kay #ClearChoice Vox Box! In it I received:

The Clear Choice Clarifying Gel
The Clear Proof Blemish Control Toner
The Clear Proof Acne Treatment Gel
The Clear Proof Oil-Free Moisturizer for Acne Prone Skin

It was pretty awesome that I received full size bottles and not teeny sample sizes. After about a month using the products I'm happy to see that I have a lot left. 

Now to how well the products worked for me.

At the time I received the Vox Box, I was struggling with an acne breakout on my chin that had been going on for about two months. It was really frustrating because well, I'm not a teenager anymore for God's sake! Also, I always make sure to wash my face and never wear make-up, but it didn't seem to matter because my face was still breaking out.

The suggestion for the products is to start using them once a day and then  gradually increasing to avoid initial excessive drying  of the skin.

I used the Cleansing Gel in the evenings, the Blemish Control Toner twice a day--and yes I did notice dryness in the areas I used it, the Acne Treatment Gel on spots as needed, and the Moisturizer I used twice a day.

I started noticing a difference in a little over a week of usage. My cheeks, which are prone to small spots cleared up completely, and the overall look of my forehead and cheeks smoothed and lost the oily, shiny evening look I am prone to.

The big problem area, my chin, was a tougher nut to crack. Large pimples were just plaguing it and making me miserable, and I made sure to use the toner and treatment gel on the spots twice a day. When the dryness occurred I used the moisturizer and remained patient.

It took about two weeks but the large, most persistent blemishes on my chin began to shrink and jump ship. YESSSSS!

As of today I am using the product every morning and night but the Acne Treatment Gel I have not needed in a week. My skin feels and looks great and I am so relieved to be free of annoying and embarrassing blemishes.

I highly recommend this product to anyone!

I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Product Review: Influenster #IceCreamStockUp Part 2


So went back for MOAR ICE CREAM at Target. Remember kiddies, tomorrow is the last day for you to get in on the ice cream stock up and take advantage of a buy 3 get 1 free deal.

There are so many flavors to choose from in just the three brands! Magnum, Klondike, and Fruttare all offered a wealth of yummy. It was pretty hard to choose. Here is the final take:
Needless to say my family was VERY happy with this. Their favorite brand/flavor was the Magnum ice cream, with one box of it devoured on the spot!

Klondike scored very high as well. The classic flavor, no bells and whistles, you can't beat it.

 I tried the Wild Cherry flavor of Fruttare and I enjoyed it immensely! It wasn't too tart, and it was quite refreshing! The portion size was pretty small, more so than I expected in fact but it made for a decent snack.
All in all, I have to say this has been a super fun promotion from Influenster, Magnum, Klondike, Fruttare, and Target. Thanks so much to Influenster for letting me participate in the #icecreamstockup party, and for sending me the voucher for free ice cream so I could review it!

Keep up the awesome guys!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

PRODUCT REVIEW: #icecreamstockup from Influenster! @Fruttare

Yay a sweet treat from Influenster!

Qualifying for a #voxbox or brand challenge from Influenster.com is such an exciting thing. This time around, I've received a voucher for a free box of ice cream treats. Granted, the shiny red envelope containing my voucher was a wee bit late in arriving but when I finally had it in hand it was OFF TO TARGET FOR MY FREE ICE CREAM! <--- free ice cream deserves to be all caps, n'est pas?

Shiny red envelope promising free ice cream is better than a golden ticket from WONKA! :)
So off to Target I went for my free ice cream. In this case I received a voucher for a free box of Fruttare ice cream. Super cool! The only problem, is when I got there I was met by this:


The choices of Fruttare I was met with were Strawberry and Milk, Coconut and Milk, and Mango Ice. Ugh! Too much yummy! Welp, since I have a free box anyhow, why not splurge and get all three? WOO! Once I've tried all three flavors I'll post a blog with my review :) . Sounds like I'm gonna be having Fruttare for lunch!

In the meantime, y'all should get to Target straightaway and take advantage of the buy 3 get 1 free deal being offered on Fruttare, Magnum, and Klondike before it ends on August 30. Time is a-ticking!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Product Reviews: The Influenster #GoVoxBox

The #govoxbox from Influenster is definitely my favorite voxbox to date! I'm just gonna say that right off the bat. It arrived packed full of goodies and samples of things that I really want to keep in my life forever.

Playtex Sport Fresh Balance Tampons

A coupon for a free Muller Yogurt product

3 packets of The Vitamin Shoppe's Fit N Full Shake AND a shaker cup to mix them

Blue Diamond Blueberry almonds

Profoot Triad Orthodic & PediRock

Aqua Spa Bath Salts

The things I didn't much care for: The tampons--they are "scented" and supposed to keep your "fresh" and "nice" down there BUT I don't really care for products that bring perfumes to the lady-parts. Sorry Playtex! 

The aqua Spa bath salts do have a luxurious feel and look, and are quite attractive to put on display in your bathroom. And who doesn't love having an excuse to just put the candles on and SOAK in that tub? 

The bath salts had a lovely smell but I found it quickly overwhelming. Now THIS is a feat considering I have lost 90% of my sense of smell! I did give the bath-salts to someone else who enjoyed them immensely. So on this one I have to chalk it up to personal preference

Now on to the goodies!

The Profoot Orthodics and the PediRock are amazing! The orthodics fit into my sneakers and took a lot of stress off my body. I will keep looking for those. The Pedi Rock is my new best friend! After using it once my feet were already glowing and smooth and free of pesky rough spots. It's soft and squishy but rough on the surface so it presses against every curve of your foot and gets all the dry stuff off. It's washable and easy to use and store. 

The Muller Yogurt voucher. YUMMY! Who doesn't love yogurt? Great stuff.

The Blue Diamond blue almonds. Okay... these almonds are more purple than blue and at first I was freaked out looking at them. I thought they would be drenched in food dye and I HATE food dye. They were colored with beet juice, though, so no worries about food dye headaches. Yay! They were tasty and attractive and sweet and almondy and basically a snack of awesome and win. 

I can see these as being a perfect snack for someone who finds a eating a handful of nuts and almonds boring despite it being good for them. It would also be a perfect snack for kids who are finicky. They're slightly sweet and fragrant so they make for a very attractive snack.

Then we come to the Vitamin Shoppe's Fit N Full shake samples. This was indeed a mixed bag ranging from "meh" to "awesome!" The Vitamin Shoppe sampler included three different flavor packs, the shaker cup, and a five dollar off certificate for a future purchase.

The shaker cup is super nifty! It has a big purple jax in it that mixes the powder and gets you a smooth, hassle free shake. BPA free as well so that's a plus.

The first time I used it, the shake was rather lukewarm and still had chunks in it. I didn't shake it long and hard enough. The next time I used it, instead of just cold water (as directed on the packet) I threw in some ice cubes and gave it the shaking of a lifetime. That made the shake super cold and smooth. 

The texture of all three flavors was smooth but also thin. It did not have the consistency of a smoothie but I'm sure anyone could remedy that by using a blender and adding fruit, crushed ice, and rice/soy/dairy milk and honey. That would add to the caloric count however.

Despite it being thin, the shake filled me up and I found I didn't need to add any extras in it to make it more feeling. So as a snack or quick meal replacement it does its job nicely.

The wild berry flavor looked attractive--turning pink when it hit the water, and the taste was initially ok, but the heavy stevia flavor of the shake left a heavy after taste and did not leave me wanting more. The vanilla shake was a bit better but again, the aftertaste remained. I can see trying the vanilla one again with a dollop of honey and cinnamon and a mashed banana. The swiss chocolate flavor was DELICIOUS! It mixed smoothly and even though I just used water and ice cubes, it didn't need a thing more. The chocolate taste overpowered the stevia taste and I felt satisfied and happy with it.

I did see a burst of energy each time after drinking these shakes, so that was interesting, considering they're not sweetened with sugar but with stevia.

I will use my five dollar off coupon to get more of the chocolate packs. They'll be great to have on hand for a quick snack or meal, especially when I'm being whiny about what I want to eat.

Well that's all for now! Thanks to Influenster.com for sending me the products FREE OF CHARGE for testing purposes. 

If any of you would like to join the influenster program, please feel free to ask! All I need is your email and I can get an invite sent to you.