Fab Fit Fun VIP Box Summer 2014 Review

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Back to box reviews following a long hiatus! And we get to start with the Fab Fit Fun VIP summer box, which has, in the past, been one of my favorites. Fab Fit Fun is a box curated by Guiliana Rancic and is sent out quarterly. It is $49.99 per quarter and contains health, beauty and fitness lifestyle items. Let’s see what the summer box brought:

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Upon first look, there were a lot of items in there!

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Sonya Dakar Flash Facial $95: So, while I was initially a little bummed that the crown jewel of the summer FFF box was a skincare product, that was before I gave it a try.  It made an immediate change in my skin, and it works like nothing else I have ever used.  You apply a thin coat to your clean, dry face and then let it sit for a minute, and then you rub it off in a circular motion and then rinse.  Let me tell you, the first time I used it, some nasty stuff came off of my skin.  It basically just melts the dead skin away, and I felt like I noticed a difference immediately.  It says to use everyday, but at a $95 price tag, I think I will maybe do it once a week or so.  Don’t want to get too spoiled.

Pur-lissle pur-protect SPF 30 Daily Moisturizer: $55 I wear an SPF moisturizer on my face everyday, so this is a score. I like their products, and as soon as I run out of my current moisturizer, I will switch to this one. I did try a little squirt, and the texture is nice, especially for it being a 30 SPF, and it has a clean, low-key smell.

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Fab Fit Fun Water Infuser bottle: $15  So, I am really loving my Citrus Zinger bottle from last month’s PopSugar box, and I really don’t need two.  I will probably gift this one.  I like the way the chamber for fruit and stuff is down the middle, but I thought the opening was a little weird. The saying on the side says: “Grab life by the exercise balls.” Ummm, ok.

Zoya Nail Polish in “Cole”: $9 This is a great color, kind of like a Creamsicle, and I love Zoya polish for their Vegan (and pregnancy friendly….not that I am, but that is handy) ingredients.  I would totally wear this, except for that the applicator brush is completely jacked up.  even in the picture, you can see the brush against the side of the bottle inside.  It is un-useable.  I am bummed!  I will email FFF and see if they will replace, although that seems like a lot of work when I have about a million bottles of nail polish.  I have heard their service is great though.

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Thursday Friday Mini Clutch/Makeup Bag: $35  Ok, so it seems like every single box over the past few months has had a canvas makeup bag.  I am on overload and will gift this one.  It is cute, although the pattern I got is totally not me. $35 seems like a lot to me to spend on a canvas bag that would not even come close to holding all my makeup for a trip. And I am not even that much of a makeup queen, but still, this thing is tiny.  I think my BFF might like it though.  The box also included a $30 coupon card for the Thursday Friday site, which ended up getting pictured below.

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KISSTIXX Lip Balm in Sweet and Sour: $6 Apparently you are supposed to give one of these to your makeout partner and then keep one for yourself, creating come sort of taste sensation when you kiss.  Well, while that sounds lovely in theory, as the working parents of a two-year old, if we ever get time to make out, the forethought it takes to simultaneously apply lip balm prior to would probably send us over the edge.  However, lip balm is always a score for me, and these feel nice. I’m keeping them both for myself.

Balanced Guru No Frizz Oil: $25 This one is a dud for me.  I just refuse to put any kind of oil treatment in my hair because it is already so fine and oily that anything like this makes it look like I poured mayonnaise on my head.  I will pass this on to a friend who like hair oils.  It gets great reviews from other, non-greaseball, reviewers, though!

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These were some of the extra, sponsored items in this month’s box:

PopChips in BBQ: These were eaten almost immediately.  Everyone in the house loves these.

Skintimate Shave Gel sample: Nice for my swim bag or travel.

Always Xtra Protection Long Daily Liners: Not really my thing, but might make a nice addition to a post-pregancy/new baby gift basket

Slimfast Have Your Cake bar: Also not really my thing, just because of how many chemicals and junk SlimFast puts in their stuff.  Someone will eat it at some point, I’m sure.

All told, the Summer 2014 Fab Fit Fun VIP box had a value of around $250. It was not my favorite box from them, to be sure, but the facial is a great discovery. The value is there, but for some reason, this box just felt really thrown together to me and not “curated” like the Winter and Spring boxes I got the last couple times.  I will look forward to an improvement for their Fall box this year. That is my favorite time of year anyway.

Hair Today

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Julep is delayed this month, and so there are no boxes for the first few days of July. So now, you’re stuck with an anecdote from me.  This one is about my hair.

I know. Important, right?

After wearing my hair in a cute, short, pixie style for quite a while, I grew it out when I was pregnant a couple years ago because I thought that being able to put it in a ponytail as a new mom would be helpful.  And it was.  And has been. The added bonus is that my husband always comments on how much he likes my hair, as apparently most heterosexual men seem to have a thing for long hair over a  short-and-tight.  Lately, though, I am getting the itch to go back to my easy-breezy pixie again. Most of what is stopping me is that, one, I still have about 20 pounds of baby weight (um, how long do you get to call it baby weight and not just “weight”?) on me, which makes me feel that I cannot as easily pull off the short cut like I used to be able to. And two, the aforementioned husband and his aforementioned praise of the aforementioned long hair. In thinking about this decision, I have come up with a list of things that did not happen to me when I had short hair, but that regularly happen to me now.

When I had short hair I did  not:

  1.  Accidentally roll my hair up in my car window and then unwittingly yank a bunch of it out as I tried to open the door.
  2. Choke on my hair. On what is sadly becoming a fairly regular basis.  What IS that?!
  3. Apply lipgloss and then immediately have my hair plastered across my mouth upon walking outside into even the slightest breeze
  4. Have hair ALL over my bathroom and clothing and pillow and, well, everything.  I now shed worse than our elderly Australian Shepherd mix.
  5. Have the ability to swing my hair across my son’s face in a tickl-y way, which has made him squeal with laughter since he was tiny.
  6. Pay a kerbillion dollars to my stylist for getting my hair colored
  7. Spend a vast portion of my day as a slave to my blow-dryer, and then just give up and wear a ponytail, like, 75% of the time. Because of how it makes being a mom easier.  Even at the office.

However, with my long hair I do not:

  1. Get asked if I am a boy or a girl on a regular basis
  2. Look like a man while wearing a hat, helmet or any other sort of head-covering, such as a paper bag
  3. Wake up looking like Michael Keaton in Beetlejuice
  4. Attempt weekly to maim or kill my Dyson Animal by sucking up elastic ties from the carpet
  5. Have to buy said elastic ties 50 at a time every couple of months because I cannot keep track of those damn things. (note to self: check vacuum cleaner)
  6. Feel the need to wear full-face makeup and large earrings all the time to still feel like I look feminine
  7. Feel like my double chin is always on display.

So, that is my pro-con list.  What should I do?

Guess What?!

 

Getting-My-Life-Together

Soap Boxes and Subscription Boxes is back! Starting with July boxes, I am returning from my hiatus, armed with a new job, a new college degree, and a new lot on life. Expect box reviews, stories, and humor, all starting this week! Thank you for your patience while I got my life all back in order.  See you soon!

Hiatus

We are on short hiatus around here. I’m starting a big new contract, and my husband started a new job that requires a lot of travel, therefore, every extra second is spent chasing the boy. More reviews and writing to follow shortly.

Happy Mommy Box Review- January 2014

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Happy Mommy Box came yesterday in the mail, and I was so excited to get my second one, having really liked a lot of the stuff in the first one. This one had a lot of great items in it, including some super cuter jewelry. There were a couple issues, too, but I am chalking that up to them still being a new box company. Here are the goods:

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I was excited to see the containers and couldn’t wait to check out the indie jewelry. Happy Mommy Box is a fairly new monthly subscription box geared towards cool stuff to make moms happy. They always try to include a little item for the kids, too, like a snack or toy, but it is mostly about a little spoiling for mom, which I am all about. Happy Mommy Box is $29 per month, plus an initial sign-up fee of another $29. (making your first box $58 and then $29 thereafter) Here are the details:

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Happy Mommy Box always includes a little hanging-up worthy quote. I thought this one was sweet, and I am going to pass it on to a certain friend who would like this one very much.

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Pop-it airtight containers: ($15) As far as I’m concerned, it would take a lot of portable, lidded containers before we ever had enough. I have great sets of OXO stuff that I used to use when I made baby purees all the time, but those are actually getting kind of small for bigger kid portions. These are awesome. Airtight, microwave and dishwasher safe, great sizes and great for storing. They get awesome reviews on amazon, too.

Pirate’s Booty: ($0.75) Pirate’s Booty is basically a staple around here, so an extra never hurts. We don’t give our son this everyday, but it is his favorite, and it is simply organic puffed corn and cheese, not the most healthy thing in the world, but not candy and Chee-tos either. We definitely never take a day-trip or airplane ride without Pirate’s Booty.

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Chobani magnet and coupons- So, I did not assign a value to this because, while I was SO excited for free yogurt coupons, especially for something we love and buy, these coupons are EXPIRED. They have a date of 12/31/13, and guess what, it is 2014.  It’s weird how disappointed I felt about this. Obviously, it is not the end of the world, or even a big deal, but it is just an attention to detail thing that I found kind of lame. The magnet is cool, as it gives all the conversions to use when using Chobani to replace things like oil, sour cream, mayo, etc in recipes. It is on the fridge, and we will use it, but the expired coupons are annoying.

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Mug from CrystalFaye.com: ($18) Ok, so at first I thought this mug was a promo item since it has the website printed on it so prominently, but they do sell these on their site for $18. It is cute, but not totally my thing, plus, if I am going to pay $18 for a mug, I think that it should just have the cute saying on it and not be an advertisement. Am I missing something? Is CrystalFaye.com such a cool thing that it is cool to have it on the mug? I have been super unaware of cool stuff like that before, so benefit of the doubt and all. I will pass it on to my friend from Georgia, who will like the cute, peachy design.

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Love both of these cute jewelry items!

The Poppy Chain hammered brass stud earrings: ($7) These are so cute and versatile. I love little studs like this, especially for just running errands, you know, those times when you are probably going to wear yoga pants and tennies but still want to look a little girly and like you put some effort in.  Wait, am I the only one who does this?  I also love earrings like this for when I am wearing a big statement necklace. This shop has tons of cute stuff, too.  Yay for discovering new etsy artists, something Happy Mommy Box is really big on.

Jilly Bean Jewelry necklace: ($9.99) This is a cute printed necklace that says inspire on it from another indie jewelry maker. I love the gold, and the matted gold chain is cute, too, and is long enough that it can be worn over a collar as is the trend right now.

All told, the January Happy Mommy Box had a value of about $55 for the $29 price tag. I was pretty annoyed by getting expired coupons, but the cute jewelry makes me happy, and I love the containers. I am going to give this box another month, since I know they are still starting out and I like the concept. They do promise to send their monthly magazine in each box, and that was not here. Not sure if it was just forgotten or if there wasn’t one this month. Looking forward to seeing what these ladies can bring.

Mommy Mondays…A Short One on a Tuesday

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You know what, 2013?  I am kind of over you. While it was an amazing year as a mom watching  my baby turn into a boy and learn so many new things each day, and while there were great times with my little family and my awesome friends, the rest of it kind of blew. After getting laid off, things have just seemed so disjointed, and I am still struggling to find my place in all the melee. I still haven’t, but I have aspirations for 2014. This could be the year for me. I could really handle that.

So, while I will spare all of you the details about my resolutions, which may or may not be similar to resolutions of years past, what I will say is that this year feels different. It actually does. To health, inside and outside. To happiness, for me, for you, and for everyone who deserves it. And to peace.  2014 is going to rock.

Bespoke Post Review: Agave

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Bespoke Post is always one of my favorite boxes, although I have to say that the selection this month was not my absolute favorite for my husband and I. He is not into cigars at all, which was another offering, so we went with this one because we both love cocktails and could use a new set of bartending supplies. Enter, the Agave box:

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Bespoke Post is a monthly box for men that features upscale lifestyle items. They send you an email at the start of the month showing you which boxes you can choose from. If you don’t want any of them, you can always opt out for the month if none of them are your thing. It is $45 per month, and you can always get 25% off your first box with the coupon code WINGMAN. While this box is for men, there are always things for the house or things we both like to choose from, so it is kind of for both of us. And that is also why it is one of my favorites. The Agave box features professional quality bartending items, most from Cocktail Kingdom. Here are the goods:

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All the items are top quality, and I love that everything matches. Here are the details:

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Boston Shaker: ($25?) This is an unbranded Boston Shaker, but it is a nice one. They run anywhere from $15 up to $75 for the double walled ones. This is a single walled shaker, but is still high quality. I used one like this when I bartended off and on in college. It’s the best way to mix a shaken cocktail.

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Cocktail Kingdom Ice Ball Mold: ($6.95) This is great for making big, spherical ice cubes for whiskey, which we both love.

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Cocktail Kingdom Julep Strainer: ($10.95) This is perfect for straining martinis and other drinks that you shake with ice.

Cocktail Kingdom Japanese Jigger: ($8.95) To measure your liquor for your cocktails. We probably could have used this at our party last week, might have slowed some people down a bit.  🙂

Cocktail Kingdom Mexican Beehive Juicer: ($16.95) This will be a nice juicer to keep in our bar cabinet and our pther one can be used solely for cooking now. Plus, our other one doesn’t match.

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Bonus Item: Don Julio branded cocktail glasses. Two of these were included as a promo item from Don Julio Tequila. We don’t drink tequila much, but these are cool glasses, and the branding is not too obnoxious. My husband works for a brewery, so we are used to branding all over our freebies. I don’t really add the value of promo items to the box value, but these are nice glasses.

All told, the Bespoke Post Agave box had a value of about $70 for the $45 price tag. While this wasn’t one of their highest value boxes, everything is really nice, and we feel very grown up having a matching set of cocktail ware. Bespoke Post continues to be a favorite for my husband and for me. If you know a trendy, classy kind of guy, Bespoke Post would make a great gift.