Posted in Beauty, Product Reviews

#Sponsored Product Review: Personalized Skincare From Y’OUR


When I was younger, I never gave much thought to skincare. After all, when I was a teen, there were basically 3 brands to chose from! They either worked for you or they didn’t. Entering my twenties and having 2 kids changed my skin dramatically. I experienced breakouts and dark circles. Now, at 41, I’m encountering wrinkles and clogged pores. Social media sites now show me ads for ‘anti-aging breakthroughs’!
When I was asked to review for Y’OUR, I was all in. While I wasn’t sure what a did need, I knew what I didn’t want. Who wants to smell like they just put night cream on or leave a faceprint on their pillow? It’s bad enough to smell like pain relieving cream! I also didn’t want heavy feeling cream. Serums are something I’ve never had luck with, so I was hesitate to try it, too. But, I was willing to give the products a go!
Continue reading “#Sponsored Product Review: Personalized Skincare From Y’OUR”

Posted in Beauty, Product Reviews

#Sponsored Product Spotlight: Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil

Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil was included in the official GRAMMY® Gift Bag which was given to the show’s presenters and performers. Lumene’s Nordic-C Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil replenishes the driest skin with unique bi-phase hydra-oil. A replenishing blend of Wild Arctic Cloudberry and Cranberry Seed Oils with a vitamin cocktail of C, B3 and B5, omega fatty acids and Pure Arctic Spring Water, for perfectly hydrated, radiant and velvety smooth looking skin.

The Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil will have your skin singing like you just “tasted tequila” like Dan + Shay performed last night. And like Cardi B, your skin will belt out “I like it like that!”

Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil, $24.99
Nourishes and brightens skin
Replenishes even the driest skin and improves evenness
Leaves Skin looking radiant and healthy
Key Ingredients: Vitamin C, Wild Arctic Cloudberry, Arctic Cranberry Seed Oil, Pure Arctic Spring Water
Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil is 100% vegan, gluten-free and cruelty free.

MY THOUGHTS: The first thing you’ll notice is that the oil looks incredibly cool. No pun intended! Initially, it appears to be two-toned until shaken. The scent is an amazing blend that smells edible! It will not mix with other facial care product scents. I have a variety of make-up products, each with a unique scent, and this oil delicately complimented those.

For 2 weeks, I followed the directions perfectly. It’s used after cleansing, but before face cream. Being that it is the first Lumene product I have in my skincare regime, I followed it with a brand name cream. After cleansing with micellar water as usual, I applied the oil. My first impression, after the fantastic scent, was that it felt light-weight and a lot like the micellar water.

There wasn’t a greasy feeling. It was barely visible. It absorbed quite quickly. After applying a face cream, I definitely noticed that the cream went on smoother. There was a visible difference in the brightness of my skin. As for make-up application, I needed less highlighter than usual. Even under my full coverage foundation, there was still a noticeable brightness.

Now, several weeks after beginning use of the product, I still continue to see improvement. Sans make-up, my skin retains a brightness, even first thing in the morning. For me, Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil is a win!

Lumene’s Arctic Berry Cocktail Brightening Hydra Oil is available at Target,, CVS, and

Posted in Beauty

First Time With Contour/Highlighter

I purchased these products myself. Not a sponsored post.

Yesterday, I went for it. For several weeks, I’ve had in my possession, the contour & highlighters. They were so intimidating to me. I don’t know why. I just didn’t want to look like a self-tanning, inept make-up novice, I guess. I’ve seen so many Youtubers do it. My ‘Liked Videos’ are full of how-tos.

So, I took the step when Rite-Aid had a BOGO 75% off sale. Then, I looked at Amazon for brushes. I chose the Niki Garret ones. Then, I figured, after the way things have been going these last few weeks, I needed to do something fun, for me. Once I realized that most contouring Youtubers are in their twenties, with perfect skin, filters, and no flaws, I searched for a fuller face. I found a video featuring a self-professed plus-sized girl! Hooray! I am one, too! Even my face seems to be plus-sized.

So, I watched the video twice. I sat at the kitchen table, make-up mirror lit up like a runway, and prepared. I had all my other make-up on, except blush, per instruction. My husband was home and found this whole thing quite entertaining! I started the video from the beginning, taking great pains to do every blessed step. I watched as the guru took each brush and dipped it into her contour. I will say she had a WAY bigger palette than I did. However, I chose my contour color based on my skin tone. She was very tan, almost orange-y.

As I followed along, my intimidation with the products dissipated. I rationalized that if I totally botched it, I could grab the micellar water and off it’d go. I carefully used the contour brushes. My husband came up behind me and said it looked good. Oh my heart! Ok, we’re doing it! I blended as she did and then applied my blush.

Now, I was actually trying NOT to smile. I continued the video as I went on to the highlighter. I looked in the mirror, having completed the routine, and was pleased. My husband reaffirmed that he thought it looked good. I had tried something new and succeed! It was such a feeling of accomplishment. I texted my mom, aunt, and sister. I even put product pics on Instagram. I don’t feel confident enough to show my face in pics, but, knowing I had really done it was amazing.

I will continue to branch out as I’m able. But, there’s one more fear conquered!

Posted in Beauty, Health, Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s Hack #4: Makeup

One of the things that has definitely kept depression at bay for me is makeup. Not only does it keep me from scaring the masses, it makes me feel alive and better all around. But, like everything else, when you have Parkinson’s, things need to be adjusted. Here’s a few little tidbits that have made the experience more enjoyable and easier.

1. Invest in self-adhesive eyeshadow shields. These, for me, are a game changer. By using them under the eyes, you reduce fallout of shadow onto your cheeks and even hands. By using them on top and bottom of your eyes, you can create a streamlined eye look with crisp, clear lines. Also, if you’re having a shaky day, you needn’t worry about whether one side is darker, higher, etc than the other or worry about getting the shadow everywhere but on your lids!

2. Switch from a pen/pencil eyeliner to a gel. Those little gels in their little bitty pots bring me such joy! Although it’s applied with a small brush, the line can be gone over to make it bigger, longer, thicker or even thinner. There’s less chance of poking yourself in the eye (which I’ve done quite often). It is also much easier to accomplish more dramatic eye looks without the fuss.

3. Multi-task! Using one product with multiple functions is a time-saver with or without PD. Highlighters that double as a primer for example, are a great way to do double duty.

4. Don’t be afraid of color. Especially if you are suffering from depression, now is the perfect time to play with color. Remember how much fun makeup can be! Check out some YouTube gurus and try something new. It does wonders to lift your spirits. Change your look to fit your mood.

5. Rethink your makeup. Although no one quite knows why, PD can change your skin. Be it tone, oil, dryness, etc. changes happen. Do you need a matte foundation? More concealer? Take a look in your makeup bag and do something new.

6. Maybe some things need to go. Okay, maybe we can’t do false eyelashes anymore. That’s ok. Mascaras have come a long way! Try one with a thicker brush to eliminate oops moments. If you have to avoid your lower lashes, than do that. There aren’t rules here! It’s makeup. We may not be able to recreate those fab Instagram looks, but, hey, we work with what God gave us!

7. Moisturize! Then, moisturize some more. I know that I had to switch primers because the one I used for so long started to dry me out and wasn’t worth the pore minimizing effects. Once I went to a hydrating primer, problem solved.

8. Do it for you! It’s about doing something for you. To benefit you, to make you feel better, to help you see some sunshine everyday. It shouldn’t be a have to. Make it a want to. It may, as it does for me, motivate you to do more things. The better you feel, the more you are capable of. Don’t give up.

Posted in Beauty, Health, Product Reviews

#Sponsored Get Ready For ‘Back-to-School’ With Dr. Plotka!

It seems like yesterday that we were all planning Summer activities and breaking out the tank tops. Now, everywhere you go there are reminders that school starts- soon! My sister, a teacher in Alabama, goes back early in August and we’re set to begin here at home within 4 weeks! I’ve even seen a display of *gasp* Halloween candy! Anyone raising children knows how quickly 3 short, summer months go by.

We also know that the best way to get back into school is routine, routine, routine. I’m sure you have your own checklist of things to buy, borrow, or find. We certainly do! But, considering that dentists recommend getting a new brush every 3 months, the start of school is the perfect time to do it. (If you’re past that 3 month mark, don’t be too hard yourself. We all forget!)

But, don’t just buy any toothbrush. Make a conscious choice, this school year, to earn those better dental check-ups. My family has been using Dr. Plotka’s brushes for quite some time now. I can say, for fact, that they have made a difference. I won’t ever endorse a product that I haven’t used AND believe in. This product, this company, makes a difference. Need some convincing?
Explore the features of this bathroom essential:
NATURALLY ANTIMICROBIAL* BRISTLES For Better Health – Infused with silver to naturally eliminate 99.9% of bacteria that grows on the bristles within 6 hours!

FLOSSING BRISTLES™ – Dual-layered bristle structure provides superior cleaning: the inner bristles, thin as a human hair, gently brush away food and plaque in places other brushes miss while the outer thicker bristles ensure complete cleaning of gum and teeth.

SOFT LONG LASTING POLYESTER BRISTLES – Get up to one extra month worth of use thanks to the polyester better bending properties than nylon, used in most brushes on the market! (The ADA recommends changing your toothbrush every 3 months. The Doctor Plotka’s brush will last about 4!)

Dentist Developed – Dr. Ronald Plotka designed this innovative toothbrush as part of his thriving 40+ year Boston-based dental practice.

That’s impressive, right? It’s not just ‘lip’ service either. My 15-year-old son’s last SIX dental visits have been cavity-free. Zero. Some of the most beautiful words ever spoken are: ‘You have no cavities!’ It makes me proud that I am doing something good as a caregiver. In today’s world, we need all the positive reinforcement that we can get!

Before switching brushes, he had cavities. There were at least one a year to a year and a half. He goes every 6 months as suggested, so that means 6 visits- 3 years- of no cavities. It’s better for his mouth, health, and our finances! Dr. Plotka’s brushes simply clean better than ordinary brushes. They’re worth every penny.

My husband & I have both been using them too. He’s had no more tooth pain and gum issues. My gum issues are a thing of the past. Try them. What have you got to lose? You have a lot to gain. Get ready to have the best school year ever featuring a winning smile!

I received the aforementioned product in exchange for a review. All opinions are mine. 

Posted in Beauty, Product Reviews

#Sponsored Product Spotlight: ARM&HAMMER™ Foot Care Invisible Spray Body and Foot Powders


Real Mom Talk: Boys and odors hold hands like they’re best friends. That’s the cold, hard truth. If you have ever picked up a sock only to see it retained the shape of a foot and that smells like there’s a corpse attached, then you have sons! Over the years, many products have come and gone out of our home in the hopes that foot odor would vanish. Fabric sprays, machine washing sneakers, heck, even leaving socks & shoes in the direct sunlight outside- we’ve tried it all. Eventually, each of my sons has resorted to unloading a nasal tirade of cologne into their shoes. Trust me, that doesn’t last. But, when Arm & Hammer offered their Foot spray, I decided, ‘Why not?’
Here are the facts:
ARM&HAMMER™ Invisible Foot Spray Powder, $6.99
First ever cake free invisible foot spray powder, leaving no white mess on clothes, shoes or feet
Sweat Activated Fresh Guard® Technology keeps feet feeling fresh all day
Ultra clear dry spray contains ARM&HAMMER™ Baking Soda and odor neutralizing ingredients to absorb moisture and sweat
Burst of cool fragrance lasts all day-Talc Free

My thoughts: It works! After a day of helping his dad landscape, my teen son was foot odor-free. I was impressed. No sweaty, gym room smelly feet! What I love best about this particular product is the fact that it DOESN”T smell like cologne. When you spray it initially, all you’ll notice is a fresh burst of smell, a bit like fabric spray smells, and then, it dissipates. No lingering odor. After removing socks, we noticed that this spray didn’t have an after effect. You know the smell, it let’s the world know that you’ve hidden the foot odor underneath some other scent, but it’s really still there? Yes, that smell. It didn’t happen this time. There were no skin irritations, no sock stains, and his feet/shoes really did smell good.

Another annoying truth about sprays/powders is that, for men’s products, there is always a cologne-scent. Well, what are you supposed to do with a pre-teen who needs a little help, but definitely do NOT want to spray him with an adult spray? Arm & Hammer has that covered, too and we love it!

Facts: ARM&HAMMER™ Invisible Body Spray Powder, $6.99
First ever cake free invisible body spray powder, leaving no white mess on clothes, shoes or body
Sweat Activated Fresh Guard® Technology keeps body feeling fresh all day
Ultra clear dry spray contains ARM&HAMMER™ Baking Soda and odor neutralizing ingredients to absorb moisture and sweat
Unisex spray
Talc Free
My Thoughts: Yes! It really can be unisex. Again, you have the initially fresh smell when spraying and then, there’s simply clean. Those of us who sweat know the stress sweat/man-it’s-hot sweat smell. This product is sweat-activated. Awesome! Again, talc free so you can feel safe about using it. Plus, if you do have an older teen, they may want to add their aftershave and such. This product won’t mix with it and they’ll still get that fresh, dry feeling for the day.

I trust Arm & Hammer. Most of us grew up with a box of their baking soda in the refrigerator and continued the tradition. We know they do what they say their products will do. They wouldn’t have been a household name for so long if they hadn’t. But, along with trust, they bring consumers value. Each of these products retails for an MSRP of $6.99. Now, we’ve had them about a week and the cans aren’t empty yet (with repeated uses). There aren’t too many products you can get for that price that are worth it. Value and trust- that means a lot to me. Try it for yourself and I think you’ll agree.

Posted in Beauty, Product Reviews

NEW Hard Candy Glitteratzi For Spring ’18!

We’re halfway through February & (despite what the groundhog says) spring is in sight! Time for a new season and great new make up from Hard Candy. For Spring 2018, they’ve brought us Glitteratzi! It’s a fun new make up with a fun-to-say name!
Glitter has officially become an adjective with this Liquid Sparkler. Its uses are endless.
Want to perk up your eyes? Done. Need dazzling lips? Done. Extra glow for the cheeks? You got it. Sparkle, dazzle, shine- all with one tube.
One coat gives you a sheer layer. Think of it as a back-up dancer to the rest of your make up. Two coats and you’ve got center-stage, all-eyes-on-me glitter. There are 7 shades to choose from: Aurora- a clear/white, Star-a pink, Blaze- a golden/yellow, Confetti- darker pink, Twinkle- lighter pink, Spark- a purple, and Galactic- a blue. For this review, we have Aurora, Twinkle, & Star.
I applied each on my lips, cheeks, & eyes.
Twinkle appealed to me as the best for my cheek area. I went with a one coat. I tried one & two coat applications for my eyes using all three. Star was the closest to a natural look, so I was most comfortable with it. Aurora seemed to get lost on me. Although I though it would show up on my lips, it appeared as a clear lip balm with glitter. I’d probably go with Twinkle for lips too.
A word of caution: when wet, these smear. A lot. Be careful while applying. Maybe keep a make-up wipe nearby. Once they dry, they set. Quickly. Be sure you adjust any mishaps immediately. They have serious staying power, which is good, right? Absolutely!

I’m also a fan of the slim tube and sponge applicator tip. It’s easy to grip for those of us with shaky hands. The size & shape of the tip allows for big swipes of color without sacrificing the control of the wand. The tube is no bigger than a mascara so it fits easily in purses, backpacks, etc. These would be perfect for a girls’ night out or a sleepover for teens, too.

Bottom line: Hard Candy makes it fun to be a girl! Glitter is fun and glitter in make-up makes you feel young & energetic. With a little price tag and big, big results, it’s hard to pass up Hard Candy!
Available exclusively at Wal-Mart, they have an MSRP of $6.


**I received the aforementioned product in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.