Sunday, January 18, 2015

Poppy Austin Eye Cream Review

About a month ago, Poppy Austin offered to send me their Eye Cream with green tea & vitamin C to try out. This moisturizer is very non-greasy and absorbed instantly into my skin. It was more light-weight than a lot of moisturizers that I've used in the past, and had a light, pleasant scent.

If you're a mommy, you probably get 10+ hours of sleep every night just like I do, but this product is fantastic for those "rare" nights where you may have not gotten quite enough. It does an excellent job at reducing swelling under the eyes and making those dark circles less noticeable!  I love the fact that even though it's an "eye cream", it can be used on your entire face.  This is actually my current go-to moisturizer!

You can either purchase this eye cream via Amazon or straight off of Poppy Austin's website.  Also, their Facebook page offers inspiring quotes and quirky antidotes now and then :)

Friday, January 16, 2015

InstaNatural Review Round-Up

Since I have started doing reviews for companies in exchange for their products, I have been blown away with how amazing working with InstaNatural is.  I had never heard of this company before, but I am so glad that I have been introduced to them now.  Their products are all 100% natural and I can feel confident trying them out on my skin.  I have so many products to review today from them, I haven't even counted - let's just get started..

Vitamin C Anti-Aging Facial Toner

After trying the last facial toner I reviewed, I have been determined to find one that I can actually handle the smell of.  This toner smells fantastic in my opinion; very citrus/orange-y.  It also comes in a convenient spray bottle, which is a must for me when it comes to toners.  A few moments after spraying it on, I can already feel my skin tightening - it definitely works as described!  My only complaint is that it leaves my skin feeling more greasy than I would expect from a toner.  I could see this more being used as a make-up removing toner that I would wipe off immediately vs a toner veil, more like what I've been looking for.  Sadly, this didn't fulfill the role of my holy grail toner. 

Hyaluronic Acid Serum

To start this off: In case you didn't read my last review on Hyaluronic Acid, a little scary fact, is that most Hyaluronic Acid found in medicines is derived from the combs of roosters (yuck!), but InstaNatural only uses vegan Hyaluronic Acid.  Phew!Much like other Hyaluronic Acid Serums I've used in the past, I loved the little glass bottle with dropper, which made it so simple to apply the product onto my face.  My skin just soaked this stuff up - I am not sure if that's normal, or if I am that much in need of hydration, but I barely got the chance to rub it in before it all was absorbed!  It definitely gave my skin a fresh and dewy appearance, without making it look greasy at all.  I felt like my skin retained moisture throughout the rest of the day, which isn't always the case with my moisturizers in the wintertime.  In the end, if you are looking for Hyaluronic Acid Serum, definitely give this stuff a try!

Premium Enrichment Cellulite Cream

I've tried other cellulite creams in the past, and this one was much thicker than any other that I've tried - so thick, in fact, that the pump mechanism on the bottle would often get stuck down and I would have to wait awhile before it would come back up and I could get another pump out.  Speaking of the pump, I loved having my cream in a pump!  In the past, all of the cellulite creams I've used in the past came in a jar where you had to dip your fingers in - and I always felt like I was leaving behind microscopic traces of bacteria that were then growing and festering until the next time I used it.  With the pump, you only get exactly how much you need, and you don't need to worry about the possibility of contaminating the rest of the product! (Is this even a legit possibility or am I being crazy?)

Back to the product.. the smell was hard to describe, but not unpleasant.  My skin immediately felt more hydrated after rubbing it in, and it did rub in surprisingly easy for how thick it was.  Now, I did take before and after pictures - this is with 3 weeks of using it once a day (normally after my shower).

Before & After using InstaNatural's Cellulite Cream
I'm going to be honest... apart from my bruise healing from the first photo, I feel my "After" picture actually looks worse!  Maybe I was just holding my leg at an awkward angle, but I take at least 20 or so angles to be able to line up the Befores & Afters - and all of my "Afters" just looked terrible.  I am not going to blame this on the product, though - it most likely has to do with my diet or my current exercise routine or something.  In the end, I do like the way that this product makes my skin feel - however, I really cannot back up any of it's cellulite reducing claims from my experience.

Argan Oil Hair Treatment & Elixir

Ever since donating my hair over 3 years ago, it just doesn't seem to want to grow back.  I take Hair, Skin, & Nails vitamins, use heat protectant when straightening, and always seem to be left with a crazy amount of dead ends when it comes time to see my stylist, leaving her with no choice but to cut off pretty much the entire length that had grown out since the last visit.

I decided to start searching for a good hair treatment that leaves my hair feeling conditioned and protected, without the unnecessary greasy feeling.   This was a very oily, liquid product and was somewhat difficult to work with.  At first I tried applying it just to my fingertips to work through my hair, but it immediately just slid right off and onto the floor.  The scent was pretty neutral - nothing special, but not bad.

The directions on this product inform you apply at "any time" for a 10-minute, 2-hour, or overnight hair repair treatment.  It claims you can also use this stuff as a styling aid.  After reading the directions, I was a little disappointed, because even though it doesn't seem like much - I really don't have even 10 minutes to sit around waiting for this stuff to work before I hop in the shower.  Instead, I applied it to the lower half of my hair and hopped into the shower, working on washing my body and shaving my legs before shampooing it out.  (Tip:  I learned from my stylist that you should never apply hair oil treatments within a few inches of your roots - unless you have a really dry scalp, your natural oils do an awesome job at keeping the hair up there hydrated.  By adding more oils, that's how you get the greasy hair appearance after using a treatment.)

My hair definitely felt hydrated after shampooing - but even after two shampoos, I felt as if there was just too much greasiness left in my hair, weighing it down.  I didn't even attempt to try it as a styling treatment, because I can just imagine what it would leave my hair looking like if I didn't at least try to wash it out afterwards.

Argan Oil Hair Mask

Moving on from the last review straight into this one.. I loved how this product is able to be used as a daily conditioner!  That's right - no extra time needed to set aside to give yourself a hair treatment, just replace your current conditioner!  I love, love, love the smell of this stuff!  It's so yummy - my daughter tells me my head smells like chocolate when I get out of the shower.  Even better, when I go to straighten my hair later on, it re-activates the scent again!

I immediately notice a difference after using this product in the softness of my hair, but there is no greasiness left behind - definitely what I was looking for in a hair treatment!  I love the flexibility of being able to use this every day as a conditioner, or 1-2 times a week as a hair mask, depending on my needs.  I've been using this about 2-3x a week for the past 3 weeks and there's still over 3/4 of the jar left - you get tons!  My only complaint is that it is in a jar, and like I discussed in a previous review, I feel like I could be contaminating the product in the jar by dipping my hand into it.  I would much rather have this in a bottle that I could pump or squirt out.  Regardless, that tiny observation does not stop me from LOVING this product!  I highly recommend each and every one of you to try it!

Dead Sea Mud Mask Detoxifier & Purifier

I often go on little detoxifying kicks, so when InstaNatural offered to send me their Dead Sea Mud Mask Detoxifier & Purifier in exchange for my honest and unbiased review, I was all for it!  I ended up using this, not just as a facial mask, but as an upper body detoxifying mask while I was taking a bath.  Since this is actually from the Dead Sea which is loaded with salts, you only should leave this product on for 10-15 minutes, and only use it once a week, or it could dry out your skin too much!

The product itself is quite goopy and dark - however, upon application, I noticed that it really doesn't coat my skin quite as well as other mud masks that I've used in the past - for example:

Another brand of Dead Sea Mud Mask on the Left - InstaNatural's on the Right

It still wasn't difficult to see when the mask dried - like in this photo, you can see my face had already started drying, while the mud on my upper body was wet.  Once the mud was applied, I could feel a tingling, cool sensation as it dried - and I like to imagine that was all of the toxins slowly being sucked out of my body.  Who knows if it really is, but thinking that is what counts - right? ;)

I have used this product multiple times since receiving it, and I love having it on hand for when I want a more spa-like experience at bath time.  It leaves me feeling refreshed!

Emu Oil Moisturizer

Let's be honest... I was kind of creeped out when InstaNatural offered to send me their Emu Oil in exchange for my honest and unbiased review... and I still am quite creeped out by this product.  I don't think I even want to know how it's derived.

It's a very oily product, and the first time I used it, I went straight for my face.  Eek - that was a bad decision, as it is definitely was too oily for my skin.  Afterwards, I noticed that they recommend you use it on your nails, so I started using this as a cuticle oil when I do my nails, and I enjoy it much more!  One squirt is enough to fully moisturize all 10 nail beds... and fingers.. and my hands.  A little goes a really, really long way!  I can't imagine I would ever run out of this product.  I personally won't even attempt to try it on my hair, as they suggest - as I know already it's going to just leave it looking greasy and weighted down.  If you're looking for an addition to your manicure routine, however - give this stuff a shot!

Stretch Mark & Scar Cream

As I've mentioned before, my two children have left me quite the collection of "tiger stripes".  Now, some of my stretch marks are over 8 years old - which means nothing short of cosmetic surgery is going to get rid of them, but I still figured this product couldn't hurt!

I was surprised at how big the bottle that this came in is - much bigger than it appears in the photo!  I also (of course) loved that it was a pump and not a jar that I had to stick my hand into.  The product itself is just a basic, white, non-greasy cream that absorbs into your skin quite effortlessly.  There's not much scent to be noticed, either.  Onto the Before & Afters!
Top: Before, Bottom: After

I definitely felt that this cream did an excellent job at hydrating my skin, leaving it feeling nourished.  The before and after photos of my stretch marks, however, really don't show too much (if any) improvement.  I am sure if I had used this 8 years ago, I probably would have had different results!  Thankfully, I am comfortable with my 'love marks' from my kids and have accepted that they will probably be there for the rest of my life ;)

Vitamin C Moisturizer

Ever since handing off my favorite moisturizer to my mom, I've been looking to find another one that can take it's place.  I was a little hesitant to try this moisturizer, as I know Vitamin C products that I've used in the past have left my skin feeling oily - and this was no exception.  It's definitely a moisturizer that I will only be using at night.  I also am a little concerned because it occasionally burns my skin when I apply it - I am not sure if that's normal?  In all, it does a great job at moisturizing - just maybe a little too moisturizing if you want to wear it under your makeup :)

100% Natural Seaweed Powder

I've been kind of dreading this review.. but let's start out with the positives!  I love how many options you have when using this product.  There are all kinds of recipes on the back of the container (which is HUGE, by the way!), depending on what you're looking for, plus they encourage you to experiment and try your own!  I feel I do need to point this out - this product is not for consumption.  It is strictly to use ON your skin!

After reading the various recipes and realizing that pretty much every one uses olive oil, and understanding that we don't have olive oil in my house, I went for the next best - if not better thing - coconut oil!  I already use coconut oil on my hair, skin, and teeth - so I thought making a detoxifying scrub out of it sounded lovely!  I mixed 1/4 cup coconut oil with some of the seaweed powder and some peppermint oil infused salt to help with the exfoliation.  Immediately upon opening the container I was shocked with how disgustingly fishy this stuff smells - but I figured I could mask out the fishy-ness with the yummy coconut oil and peppermint oil scents.

Peppermint Infused Coconut & Seaweed Scrub!
I scrubbed this concoction all over my midsection and legs, as it was quite similar to the cellulite scrub they recommended.  A little goes a long, long way - in the photo above, that's actually after I had used the scrub all over!  So, at this point the fishy smell was really starting to bother me.  (Correction, it no longer was a fishy smell - it smelled like a Hawaiian Fish Mouthwash.)  I hopped into the shower to rinse it all off.  It was right here where I made a mistake and did not securely tighten the lid onto the container before getting into the shower, as the fishy smell attracted my cats into the bathroom as I was rinsing off and.. 

.. fishy powder everywhere.  Surprisingly, I was able to flip the container over and really didn't lose much product at all.  I decided the easiest way to clean up the remaining mess on the floor was to vacuum it up - right?  No.. wrong, wrong, horribly wrong.  The inside of my vacuum became coated with this green, fishy powder - it was everywhere!  In the filters,  in the hoses, coating the bag-less cup thing that you dump.  EVERYWHERE.

I like to think I am a smart person, but there's a good chance that I am not.   Because if all of this wasn't enough, I decided the best next action would be to vacuum my entire house, and hopefully the little dust and dirt particles that I pick up will clean the powder off from inside of the vacuum.  Instead, my entire house was left smelling like the inside of a dirty fishbowl.  For days after this happening, all I could smell was fish.  Even my kids told me how disgusting the house smelled.

I washed my entire vacuum out with vinegar and water until none of the fishy powder remained, sprayed air fresheners everywhere, and used fragrance plug ins in every room.  The smell is finally gone - and so is this Seaweed Powder.  I happened to have a friend come over who fell in love with the fishy smell of my house and I made sure the product left with her.  It's in a much more loving home now, where it truly can be appreciated.

Moroccan Rose Water Toner

I really enjoy the smell of this product - it is truly the smell of sticking your nose inside of a rose.  I often read historical fiction books where queens would bathe in rose water, so secretly I wanted to recreate that in my own bathtub.

More importantly, however, is I still need to find a toner that I like!  This stuff is a fantastic toner.  It leaves my skin feeling clean, hydrated and refreshed.  Sadly, my issue with this product is that it comes in a little glass bottle.  I desperately need a toner that I can just spray on and go.  I definitely will be going out and buying a little spray bottle to transfer this stuff to, because apart from that, it rocks!

Wow.. was that enough reviews for you?!  Hopefully at least one of these will help you make an informed decision the next time you are looking to buy some beauty products!

The best thing about InstaNatural?  Their guarantee: InstaNatural is proud to back their products with a 100% Lifetime Satisfaction Guarantee Policy. If you are not completely happy with your purchase, just contact them for a refund - no questions asked. They are confident you will enjoy results - or get your money back.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Garcinia Cambogia Appetite Suppressant Supplement

When Summit Nutritions offered to send me their Garcinia Cambogia supplement in exchange for reviewing it, I was super excited!   This product claims to block fat and suppress your appetite to help you with your diet and exercise regimen.  I was even more excited upon receiving the product, to see that they threw in a bottle of their Raspberry Ketones, too!  Raspberry Ketones claim to be a "miracle fat burner" - and although I haven't gotten to try them out yet due to wanting to get a solid opinion of the Garcinia Cambogia, I can't wait to be done with the first bottle and get started on the second!

First off, the products do not look like they are pictured - the pills are all white, not colored as they are in the photo.  The Raspberry Ketones also come in a white bottle, and the label appears as if it was affixed by a monkey - not to mention they expire in March.  (Maybe that's why they were sent free of charge?)   I realize those are petty observations, I just wanted to get them out of the way.

Onto the important stuff!  Summit Nutritions' Garcinia Cambogia is All Natural, GMO & Gluten Free.  The directions say to take 1 capsule with 6 oz of water twice daily, approx 30 minutes before meals.  This is supposed to help block any fats you ingest and suppress your appetite so that you eat less.  In my line of work, I really don't have time to stop and eat a lunch so I love having the ability to take an appetite suppressant, eat a quick meal replacement bar, and be back to work within 5 minutes.  Sadly, when I did that with this supplement, I was STARVING within an hour.  Quite honestly, I was probably more hungry than I would have been normally  - and I've since seen many other reviewers say they also feel the supplement had the opposite effect on them.  Also, this is one of those pills that you can feel something stuck in your throat well after swallowing, which I find annoying.

I don't believe this product is for everyone.  It's definitely not a miracle pill, but Summit Nutritions doesn't advertise it as one, either.  I have an issue with self control when it comes to food, and this product just seemed to make those cravings even harder to resist.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Foxbrim Facial Toner & Seaweed Complex Lotion

Foxbrim sent me two of their products to try and review for you all!  As always, I am so thankful to the companies who are willing to send me their products in return for an unbiased review - that alone shows that they truly care about what their customers think!

First up is their Natural Facial Toner.  I recently had a facial done at my salon and loved the toner she had used on me during the process.  I made a mental note to myself that I had to find a toner that I loved to start using, as well!  When I was younger, I would always use the Seabreeze toner, but I feel that's just so harsh on your skin - which is why I was pumped about trying Foxbrim's all natural option!

I loved that this came in a spray bottle - it makes it so much easier to apply than when you have to wipe it on with a cotton ball.  I used the toner after I was done cleaning my face and neck, before applying any moisturizer or other products.  It feels light-weight and refreshing on my skin, giving it an extra boost of freshness.  However, because of the scent, I've had to stop using it.  I might be fussier about scents than others, but this smells like I am spraying the bath water after washing my cat onto my face.  After spraying, I'd walk around the house quickly, as to let the breeze dry the product as quickly as possible and hopefully leave the smell behind - but this was just too much of a hassle to continue using the product.

The next product that Foxbrim sent me was their Seaweed Complex Lotion.  I was also stoked about this one, as I have been looking for a new moisturizer ever since leaving my last favorite one with my mom!  I used this moisturizer both in the morning and at night before bed to try and combat the dry skin that winter has been causing around my nose.

The moisturizer went on smoothly, without any greasiness.  It absorbed into my skin quite quickly, allowing me to continue with my daily facial routine without needing to wait around.  I was surprised by the smell of this, as it was very strongly scented - at first it reminded me of a bar of soap, but after having a friend smell it, she made me realize that this smells like men's aftershave.  I am very surprised that something that is all natural can have this level of fragrance in it.

I will mention this one more time - I am very fussy about scents, and in this case, I just do not feel comfortable putting something so highly-fragranced onto my face.  I'm sure it's just fine, but after years and years of telling myself that fragrances don't go above my neck, this just goes against everything I know.  I really, really feel this would be an excellent product for a guy who needs a good moisturizer, but doesn't want to feel too "metro" about it.

The fantastic thing about Foxbrim is that they offer an amazing guarantee.  If for any reason you are unsatisfied with any of your purchase, they will refund all of your money.  No questions asked.  If you are less of a fussy-head than I am about your scents, I definitely recommend you give these two products a try!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Unboxing my ModaVoxBox

I was so excited when I received my #ModaVoxBox from Influenster - there were so many goodies to try!  After putting them to use over the past few weeks, I wanted to pass on my thoughts on each,

Rimmel London sent the most products, including their Moisture Renew Lipstick, Moisture Renew Lip Liner, and Scandaleyes Rockin' Curves Mascara.  At the moment, their Scandaleyes Retro Glam mascara is my all-time favorite go-to mascara, so I was pumped to give Rockin' Curves a try.

The wand on the Rockin' Curves is unlike any mascara I've ever seen before - almost "S" shaped.  I loved it for reaching the outer- and inner-most corners of my eyes, though - I feel I put mascara on lashes that have never felt mascara before!

Before & After Rimmel London Scandaleyes Rockin' Curves Mascara

Although it doesn't give me huge lashes like the Retro Glam does, the Rockin' Curves makes applying mascara to my lower lashes SO simple.  My new everyday makeup routine has me using Rockin' Curves on the bottom, while I use Retro Glam up top.  It's the best of both Scandaleyes worlds!

Next up was Puff's SoftPack.  I love, Love, LOVE having this SoftPack on my couch for whenever I might need a tissue.  It's soft, so I don't have to worry about leaning into it and getting a sharp corner in my side - and it's great to just toss across the room if anyone else needs a tissue.

Recently, Clairol released a new hair product line at Target called Hair Food.  While Influenster sent me their Moisture Hair Mask, I took my coupon straight to Target and also bought one of the shampoos (combined with cartwheel to save even more!)  I love how pure these products are, with none of the stuff that gunks up and stays on your hair, weighing it down.  I also love the salon-style pump on the shampoos, which makes using it in the shower a breeze.

When I first used my hair mask, however, I found my hair to feel super greasy and oily.  Afterwards, I spoke to my hair stylist about it, and she told me that when using any sort of conditioner or deep conditioning treatments, to always avoid applying it to the first few inches of hair near the scalp.  Unless you have a super dry scalp, your own natural oils do an awesome job themselves at keeping that immediate hair conditioned and healthy.  I had no idea, but it makes perfect sense!  Since then, I've only used the Hair Food Hair Mask on my bottom half of my head, and there has been no more greasiness!

Swiss Miss has came out with this new cocoa line called Simply Cocoa, and it is AMAZING.  I hate companies who think the more products they use, the better their final product will be.  I prefer purchasing natural, simple products so I know exactly what my family is eating.  Swiss Miss Simply Cocoa is just five ingredients - sugar, cocoa, nonfat milk, salt, and natural flavor.  Nothing artificial, nothing you can't pronounce, and it tastes fantastic!  The only slight downfall is that it must be made with milk, not water optional like most cocoas.  This was also on sale at Target, and paired with a coupon and cartwheel was only around 50 cents.

I also received Jergens Ultra Healing Extra Dry Skin Moisturizer.  This stuff is rich and is definitely for dry, dry skin - and it leaves your skin feeling super nourished.  My issue was that it didn't fully absorb into my skin, so it made it near impossible to put on skinny jeans or leggings afterwards, because my legs were so sticky.  I've had to stick to using this lotion only before bedtime, so that it has all night to properly absorb!

Lastly, Influenster sent me a bottle of Resource Spring Water.  Nothing blew me away about this water - I still prefer bottled waters that have the spout cap to drink out of when I am going to the gym.  If you want to get your water delivered, however, right now they are offering up to 50% off your first delivery at

Want to receive free products in the mail in exchange for your unbiased review?  Comment below or send me your e-mail address and I will send you an invitation to Influenster!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Body Merry Products Review + a Giveaway!

I've been wanting to host a giveaway for quite some time, and recently Body Merry sent me FOUR of their products to review - so I decided to combine this all into a product review + giveaway!  After reading about my experiences with the Body Merry products, please feel free to enter the giveaway below. :)

First off, was their Stretch Marks & Scars Defense Cream.  This was the product that I was most excited about, as my two children have left me quite the collection of "tiger stripes".  Now, some of my stretch marks are over 8 years old - which means nothing short of cosmetic surgery is going to get rid of them, but I still figured this product couldn't hurt!

When I first opened the product, I noticed that it looked like some sort of cream cheese frosting - and that's exactly what it feels like!  The instructions suggest that you use the product twice daily, and to gently massage the cream onto the desired areas until fully absorbed.  Let me quickly explain that this product is organic cocoa butter, shea butter, vitamins e + c + b3 + b5, and pure plant oils.  Just judging from my past use of vitamin e, there's no way it's going to "fully absorb".  After applying, skin is left quite sticky and greasy, but nothing that can't be managed.

I definitely felt that this cream did an excellent job at hydrating my skin, leaving it feeling nourished.  Before and after photos of my stretch marks, however, really don't show too much (if any) improvement.  I am sure if I had used this 8 years ago, I probably would have had different results!  Thankfully, I am comfortable with my 'love marks' from my kids and have accepted that they will probably be there for the rest of my life ;)

Next up was the 2 . 5% Retinol Surge Moisturizer with Hyaluronic Acid.  Lately, I've noticed a lot of dry skin around my nose area, so I've been searching for a new moisturizer.  The product comes in a pretty large-sized pump container.  I loved the pump and the ability to control exactly how much product I used, without worrying about bacteria unnecessarily getting back in.

The moisturizer itself was non-greasy and absorbed into my skin within moments.  In the past, I've had to wait a few minutes after applying moisturizer before I could begin putting on my makeup, but not with this!  It absorbs into the skin almost instantly.  This product was amazing and cleared up my dry skin after just one use!

I took the Retinol Surge Moisturizer with me to my parents house while visiting during Thanksgiving, and made my mom try it.  She also loved it - and I ended up telling her to keep it, and I would purchase my own!  This is definitely a product that I will keep in my daily routine.

Body Merry also sent me their Age Defense Eye Cream to try out.  Much like the Retinol Surge Moisturizer, it was very non-greasy and absorbed instantly into my skin.  It was more light-weight than the Retinol Surge, and had a pleasant scent that reminded me of citrus.

If you're a mommy, you probably get 10+ hours of sleep every night just like I do, but this product is fantastic for those "rare" nights where you may have not gotten quite enough.  It does an excellent job at reducing swelling under the eyes and making those dark circles less noticeable!  Considering it's called 'Age Defense', I'd have to assume this product will also help me in the long run! ;)

The last product that was sent to me was the Body Merry Hyaluronic Acid.  Before receiving this product, I did not know much about Hyaluronic Acid, so I did a little research - as the word 'acid' kind of made me nervous to be putting on my skin.  Hyaluronic is an acid that is naturally occurring in the body, specifically in our eyes and joints.  It works as a lubricant in our joints, but also has been linked to healing wounds and burns on the skin.  Some have promoted Hyaluronic Acid as a "fountain of youth".  A little scary fact, is that most Hyaluronic Acid found in medicines is derived from the combs of roosters (yuck!), but Body Merry only uses plant-derived Hyaluronic Acid.  All of this information made me much more comfortable to put it on my skin!

Since I was already using the Retinol Surge Moisturizer and Age Defense Eye Cream during my morning routine, both of which already contain Hyaluronic Acid, I decided to save this product for my bedtime routine.  I loved the little glass bottle with dropper, which made it so simple to apply the product onto my face.  My skin just soaked this stuff up - I am not sure if that's normal, or if I am that much in need of hydration, but I barely got the chance to rub it in before it'd all be absorbed!

It definitely gave my skin a fresh and dewy appearance, without making it look greasy at all.  The only downfall is how much product I used each time - maybe I used too much but I can't see this bottle lasting me much longer than a few weeks.

The wonderful thing about Body Merry is that all of their products come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.  If for any reason you aren't happy with the product or your results, just contact them and they will send you all of your money back!  There's no reason not to try them with that kind of assurance!

Now, onto the fun stuff!  I've been compiling quite the assortment of products to use in a giveaway.  This prize pack contains 2 travel sized tubes of L'Oreal's Revitalift Miracle Blur Instant Eye Smoother, L'Oreal Color Riche Extraordinaire Lip Color in Rose Melody, Rimmel Scandaleyes Precision Micro Eyeliner in Black, Rimmel Show Off Lip Laquer in Big Bang, and a year subscription to Redbook - all of which courtesy of L'Oreal Paris, Rimmel London, and Redbook, respectively.  To enter, just follow the tasks in the Rafflecopter below! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Leather Nova Cleaner, Conditioner & Restorer Review

I was selected by Leather Nova to try their Leather Cleaner, Leather Conditioner & Restorer, AND Leather Conditioner & Cleaner.  I was so thankful to be chosen to review these products, because I never have really put much attention into my leather sofa and ottoman and I feel it shows.  When I got my furniture about 3 years ago, it came with a free little bottle of leather cleaner (that looks and smells like water) and that's all I've ever used to clean - and I've never conditioned them.  I knew my couch was in much need of some cleaning and conditioning!

When my package arrived, I was excited to see that each product comes with it's own applicator.  Since I received two different cleaning options, I decided to use the Cleaner followed by the Conditioner & Restorer on my couch and then just use the Conditioner & Cleaner on my ottoman.  This way, I would be able to compare the two processes and see if the 2-in-1 is just as good as the two step option.

Although my couch didn't have any specific stains that I was trying to remove, I was sure it could benefit from an all-over cleaning.  My first surprise was that you spray the cleaner directly onto the leather surface - in my past experience, the cleaner is always applied to your applicator first.  I went ahead and sprayed the entire couch generously with cleaner, and then used the provided microfiber towel to massage the cleaner into the leather to loosen any dirt.  After that was done, I went back with another dry cloth to wipe away any dirt and oil that was lifted to the surface.  My clean, white towel definitely came away with some dark marks from what was removed!

A freshly cleaned couch!
I allowed my couch to dry for awhile (while I tried the other product out on my ottoman), and then came back to finish up with the Conditioner & Restorer.  Surprise #2 came when I read the directions that stated, "You may also use your hand [to apply]"... This stuff is greasy, oily, and goopy.  There was no way I was putting it directly onto my hands!  However, it was nice to know that I had that option.

Like I mentioned before, I've never used any type of conditioner on my couch before - and boy, I think it needed it.  The leather just sucked this stuff up like crazy, I had to keep re-applying the product to the applicator every few inches, as it would go dry that quickly.  The good news is, after the entire couch was done, I only had used about 1/4 of the bottle - I assumed over half would be gone!

Wet and oily - but hopefully conditioned!
 Once all of the conditioner was applied, the couch was incredibly oily and wet looking.  The directions say to leave it sit for 1 hour, so I went back to working on my ottoman.  After the hour was up, I used a dry cloth to buff the entire surface of the couch - and wow, what a difference!

Before & After - Using Leather Nova Cleaner, Conditioner & Restorer
The couch officially looked cleaner and shinier!  It felt incredibly soft to the touch - something I continue to notice every time I sit on it.  The entire process took about 2 hours including drying time, but it's obvious that the products work!

It was then time to check out my ottoman...

Now, my ottoman did have a couple stains on it where it appears someone took a marker (wonder who could've done that?) plus, some leftover frosting or another food-like substance.  After applying the formula to the applicator pad and rubbing it thoroughly into the leather, I immediately noticed that some of the stains were lifted.

Stains - Before & After using Leather Nova Conditioner & Cleaner
I allowed the entire ottoman to dry for about 40 minutes, and then used a dry cloth to buff the surface.

Before & After using Leather Nova Conditioner & Cleaner
While the Before & After pictures for the Conditioner & Cleaner aren't as extreme as the 2-step process, I still noticed a difference in the shininess and softness of my ottoman - plus, this process took me less than half of the amount of time.

In the end, I was impressed with all of the products that I received - and I feel they all worked as claimed.  In the future, I will probably use the Conditioner & Cleaner when I need to quickly clean the furniture, as it doesn't take as long.  For dirtier situations, or for a more impressive result, I will definitely use the Leather Cleaner / Conditioner & Restorer Combo.  I plan on reapplying this to all of my leather furniture in another month or so to keep it all protected.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.