Tag Archives: product review

Wrap it Up

I was super excited to be selected for YouCopia’s campaign to review some new kitchen products. My kitchen cabinets and drawers are always a mess so it was exciting to get a chance to use something that could help me get organized.


I chose the StoreMore WrapStand for all my rolls of wraps and boxes of baggies. When it arrived I immediately put it together and got it set up on my kitchen counter. Right now, that is where it is living because it is a little too tall in its conventional position for my upper kitchen cabinets.

I’m deciding now if I’m going to keep it on its side or use it in one of lower cabinets (which would require a little reorganization). But, for now, I’m really enjoying it. I even had enough slots to store by box of gallon bags on its side. It makes it super easy to grab one without having to wrestle with a box in the bottom drawer of my cabinets.


Now, here is the best part. I didn’t just get to try one, I get to give away a YouCopia product so you can give it a try for yourself.

Enter below for your chance!

Win one Youcopia product of your choice #4

How do you tackle your disorganized kitchen? I would love to hear about what you do!


Change is Inevitable

Yesterday, when I logged in to Garmin Connect to make sure I had updated all of my runs for the week, I found that I had the option to see something new and very different from what I was used to seeing. So I decided to give it a shot.  Here are my first impressions…

1. It’s clean!
Here is a screenshot of my new dashboard under the Modern version of Garmin Connect.

Screen shot 2014-06-17 at 5.40.02 AM


The option to see the boxes in mini view or to even change the way your information is shown within the boxes makes for a more streamlined experience when using Garmin Connect

2. It’s much easier to see all of your information in one spot.
In the classic version, you could see your most recent run with a list beside it of all past runs. In order to see other content, you had to use the drop down menus to navigate around.

Screen shot 2014-06-17 at 5.57.48 AM


Now, most of your information is going to be readily available on your customized dashboard upon logging in to Garmin Connect.

3. It’s fairly easy to navigate.
I did the quick tour when I first logged in and unfortunately, it wasn’t super helpful. However, with sidebar navigation for the few things that aren’t already available on the dashboard, it was pretty simple to find the reports section and how to adjust my settings (including making a temporary switch back to the classic view if you decide you aren’t quite ready to make the switch to modern).

In addition, each of the boxes on your dashboard comes with individual settings.  These settings allow you to do things like change the view in your activities window to a list view, the most recent view, or minimize that box if it is a feature you don’t want to work with.

Screen shot 2014-06-17 at 5.56.56 AM

The list view in the activities window

4. It has “more” options
Okay, I should preface this by saying that this may exist in the classic version of Garmin Connect, but I had never seen it. When you click the search icon in the activities window it opens a view of a map with other routes on it.

Screen shot 2014-06-17 at 5.56.17 AM

For me, this was something that had been missing from my Garmin Connect experience. I love the idea that if I’m looking for a new route, I can look here to find one.  This may be even more useful when I travel!

In terms of my overall impression of the modern version of Garmin Connect, I’m happy with it so far. I feel like it has so much potential to allow me to analyze and plan my fitness in a much more thoughtful way.  With  the classic version, the potential may have been there, but it was never front and center like it is with the new dashboard feature. I’m excited to get in there and play around a little more!



Hair, Get Out of My Face!

Some years ago, I developed these little baby hairs right around my face.  They make a clean ponytail impossible and they never seem to be more than a few inches long. These little hairs are completely annoying.

I’ve tried a variety of different kinds of elastic headbands to keep them out of my face, but nothing seems to work. I think my head is shaped such that any of the elastic bands just slide right up the back of my head until the whole thing is loose and falls off.  It’s either that or how fine my hair is. I’ve even lost a couple of them during a run this way. Frustrating. Who wants to worry about that kind of thing in the middle of a run?

So, back in January when I received an Under Armour Mini-Headband in my Birchbox, I didn’t think much of it.  But a couple of weeks ago, I was cleaning out and purging some of my Birchbox stuff and came across it again.  This time, I took a little closer look.

The Under Armour Mini-Headband is braided but lays flat. In addition, each strand of the braid is backed with silicon that is designed to grip.  I thought maybe that would be the key to keeping it in my hair.

under armour headband

When I decided to run three miles on Sunday morning, I decided it would be the perfect time to give it a chance. It definitely felt snug on my head, but it stayed flat, even in the back of my head.  After three miles, it felt like it hadn’t moved at all, so I left it on for 40 minutes of yoga. It stayed in place until savasana at the end of my workout. Of course, after laying down, my ponytail had to be readjusted as well.

After readjusting, I headed out to do a couple of hours of yardwork.  During a couple of hours of hard work, I realized that I had only readjusted it one other time.  Considering my hair was pretty soaked through with sweat by that point, I decided this product is a winner.  I’m interested to see how it will hold up on a long run!

Raise Your Arms

I’m so excited that I was selected to receive a complimentary sample of Dove Advanced Care Deodorant through my membership with Influenster.

I’m already a loyal customer of Dove deodorant. I’ve been using their clinical strength variety for years because, especially in the summer months, I sweat like a beast.  I have to admit that I was skeptical when receiving Dove Advanced Care because of my sweat issue.  I thought it might be all right for regular day time activities, but when I hit the gym hard or went for a long run, I wasn’t sure how it would hold up. I’m happy to report, that after two weeks of use, I haven’t had any issues!

This deodorant is billed as being soothing to the skin.  It contains their trade-marked NutriumMoisture and is supposed to soothe your pits so you don’t end up with red, irritated skin even with daily (or twice daily) shaving.  I don’t have a lot of trouble with irritated skin from shaving, so I don’t know if this made a big difference for me.  But, as a smooth stick-style deodorant it goes on beautifully and feels good to wear.  It also doesn’t leave the white marks on my skin that I sometimes get when I apply the clinical strength deodorant.

To me, this is a good, solid deodorant.  Nothing about it absolutely blew me away, but if you are someone who ends up with armpit irritation from daily shaving, I would definitely give it a shot.  It seems to run close the $5.00 range at Target, which is a couple of dollars less than the Dove Clinical Strength that I usually buy.  It is also available from Amazon, but it costs $7.00, and will only be shipped as an Add-On item.  I’ll be sticking with it for now, but make sure I have some of my old standby in the house for when the weather finally starts to warm up!

Sugar ‘N Spice VoxBox Recap: Pearly Whites with Colgate Optic White

I was really excited to receive my first complimentary VoxBox from Influenster a couple of weeks ago!  Due to illness and a crazy schedule, I didn’t break into all of the products until the beginning of last week, but I definitely wasn’t disappointed.

The first of the products I tried was the Colgate Optic White Regimen. This included the Optic White toothpaste, toothbrush, and mouthwash.  I’m normally a Crest girl when it comes to toothpaste and my toothbrush decisions are all over the place, but I decided 5 days of using the Colgate routine couldn’t hurt, so I went for it.

I immediately fell in love with the toothbrush.  I have pretty sensitive gums, so I typically use a toothbrush with soft bristles, but sometimes soft bristles can come up short in making me feel like they are really cleaning my teeth.  The combination of different kinds of bristles on the Colgate toothbrush was perfect.  None of them were too stiff, but they worked in tandem to make me really feel like my teeth were getting clean.  They also have larger rubbery kind of bristles around the center bristles that kind of work like cups (check out the pictures below).  They added an interesting sensation to the experience.  I will seek out a Colgate Optic White toothbrush the next time mine needs replacing, for sure!


As for the toothpaste and mouthwash, they weren’t bad.  I definitely saw a difference in the whiteness of my teeth after using both products, in conjunction with the toothbrush, after just two days.  The flavor of the toothpaste was fine and wasn’t radically different from the Crest flavor I’m used to.  Depending on how the price point compares when I actually go shopping for new toothpaste, I may end up purchasing it instead of Crest.

As for the mouthwash…  I am not a fan of mouthwash in general.  I think they are super harsh.  My eyes water just about every time I use one.  The Colgate Optic White mouthwash is definitely not like that.  The only thing that bothered me about it was that the mouthwash had a slightly sour flavor.  However, I’ll take that over harsh over the top mint anyday!  I have a hard time making mouthwash a part of my regular routine, but if I can make that happen, I’ll buy this mouthwash in the future.

So, thumbs up Colgate, and well done!  I’m quite happy with the Colgate products from my VoxBox!

Lemon Zest LUNA Bar

I received the Lemon Zest LUNA Bar in my October Birchbox.  It was part of the special goop box.  Goop is a company that was founded by Gwyneth Paltrow to share all that is great in life.  So, they teamed up with Birchbox in October to send out a box that was full of some of their favorite things.   I enjoy trying new “granola” type bars because they are a simple way to get something moderately healthy in my body when I’m short on time.  So, I was excited to see this bar.

I had the bar for my morning snack today.  It only has a mild lemon flavor, which wasn’t so bad, but the sweetness of this bar was a little overwhelming.  The flavor kind of reminded me of lemon bars made from a box mix.  Not enough lemon and way too sweet.  In fact, the sweetness kind of hung around in my mouth after each bite and eventually gave way to a kind of bitter finish.  That bitterness actually made me wonder if the bar contained some artificial sweetener.  I couldn’t find any listed on the label, but I just didn’t like the way this tasted.

I like what LUNA stands for.  The bar is labeled 70% organic and according to their website, they do everything in their power to make sure the soy they use for these bars is GMO-free.  However, there were so many “extra” ingredients in this bar, I think that might balance it out.

My general opinion is that I won’t be back for more with this bar.  I’ll definitely look into some other LUNA products, but when I go for purchasing something that bills itself as a healthy snack, I’m looking for ingredients I can pronounce.  So, we’ll see how LUNA stands up to that.

Nibblin' Apricot Granola Bar

I was excited to receive the Nibblin’ Apricot Granola Bar by 18 Rabbits! I believe manufacturers ruin good granola bars by putting chocolate and such into them. Since this one is all fruit and nuts, I was really excited. It really didn’t disappoint! The apricot flavor is there, but definitely doesn’t overwhelm the other flavors in the bar. I could distinctly taste the nuts and raisins. The only reason that I didn’t give this a 5 star ratingis that I felt like the sweetness in it could have been better balanced by just a little bit of salt.