Saturday, July 26, 2014

Petit Vour July 2014 Subscription Box Review

Petit Vour is a monthly subscription box filled with generous sized samples of vegan and cruelty-free beauty products.  This is my first box ever from Petit Vour and I am very excited about it.  I've been reading reviews about their boxes for months now and couldn't help but notice they consistently send out amazing products.  Earlier this month, I finally broke down and signed myself up for a three month subscription.

Petit Vour July 2014 Subscription Box:
Cost: $15/month

Each box comes with an informational card detailing the items sent.  This month Petit Vour teamed up with vegan lifestyle blogger, Logical Harmony, to fill the box with some of her summer loves.  I wasn't familiar with Logical Harmony's blog but have since then checked it out and like what I see.  I'm always excited to discover new blogs to read!

LVX Nail Lacquer: Full Size!!!  - $16
I always love getting full size products in my subscription boxes.  LVX is 5 free, non-toxic, vegan and cruelty free.  The color I received is Lolli.  It is a ballerina pink color, which I think is a great summer color.  I'd never heard of this brand before, and am eager to try it out.  I foresee a pedicure in my immediate future!

Modern Minerals Eye Shadow:  Full Size!!! - $12.50
Modern Minerals is a mineral based make-up which is formulated without parabens, synthetic dyes or fragrances, petrochemicals, phthalates, sulfates and triclosan. My make-up cabinet is sorely lacking in the eye shadow department, so I was thrilled to see it in my box.  The color in every box varied.  I received Lola which the website describes as "warm apricot and rose pink with subtle bronze shimmer."

Pelle Beauty "Balance" Facial Oil:  1/8 fl.oz.  ~$7
Pelle Beauty is another new brand to me.  They are free of parabens, synthetic dyes or fragrances, petrochemicals, phthalates, sulfates and triclosan.  The sample included should last a couple of weeks, since a little oil goes quite a long way.

Schmidt's Natural Deodorant "Bergamot + Lime":   0.5 oz. ~ $2.50
Schmidt's Natural Deodorant is free of aluminum, parabens, synthetic dyes or fragrances, petrochemicals, phthalates, sulfates and triclosan.  It's active ingredients are baking soda and arrowroot powder which help keep the odor and wetness at bay.  This is actually my favorite brand of natural deodorant. You can read my review here.

The July box surpassed all my expectations.  I received about $38 worth of great products, three of which were new to me brands.  What did you think of the July 2014 Petit Vour Box?


Disclosure: I am an Affiliate.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Pineapple Cucumber and Lime Summer Salad

After a brief respite from the brutal summer heat last week (Our temperature felt more like Fall then Summer), it's back in full, scorching force!  As much as I enjoy the summertime, the intense heat oftentimes has me searching for any kind of cool and refreshing escape.  Enter in this flavor popping, sweet & sour, mind-blowing good Pineapple Cucumber and Lime Salad. 

I found this recipe while scouring the lovely universe that is Pinterest.  The unique combination of ingredients as well as the pure simplicity of it sucked me right in.  I knew I had to try it for myself.  It was love at first bite!

Pineapple Cucumber and Lime Summer Salad (recipe slightly adapted from Mom On Time Out)
1 Pineapple (cut into small chunks)
1 large Cucumber (remove seeds & cut into small chunks)
2 Limes (juiced)
Zest from 1 Lime
1 Tbsp Cilantro, minced
1.  Mix all ingredients together in a medium sized bowl.  
2.  Set aside and allow all of the juices to marinate, about 30 minutes, before serving. 
3.  Store leftovers in the refrigerator.

I enjoyed every last minute of this dish, so much so that I was even known to drink up all the leftover juices from the bottom of my bowl!  I know, so unlady-like, right?  But the juice was equally amazing and has inspired me to try juicing a refreshing drink using these same ingredients in the not so distant future.  I'll be sure to post it if it's as amazing as I hope it will be. 

If I haven't raved enough yet, you've simply gotta try this delightful dish before the summer is over!  

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Conscious Box Plus June 2014 Subscription Reveiew

Conscious Box is a monthly subscription box service which sends a variety of natural, GMO-free products to try.  Products may be anything from GMO-free snacks to natural cleaning products. I subscribed to this box a few years ago and wasn't very impressed with the selection of products I was receiving at that time so I cancelled after a few months.  I just couldn't get excited about receiving small boxes of random, really small sample sized products (mostly food or supplements at that time).   It was quite frankly, really boring to me, so you may be wondering why I would ever decide to try it again.  There were two reasons that made me decide to give them another try:

1.  Conscious Box had made some upgrades to their boxes by adding two different box choices, the Conscious Box Taster & Conscious Box Plus.  The Taster box is $6.95/month and is a selection of 5-8 sample size items.  The Plus Box is $16.95 and is a selection of 8-12 items, with more full size and premium products.  The examples photo's of each box show quite a bit of natural beauty products in among the mix so I was excited to see if the boxes would be a bit more well rounded and less focused on snacking and supplements.  One other option they give you is the ability to choose if you want a Classic, Vegan or Gluten Free box which I think is pretty cool.   

2.  Living Social currently has them on sale.  A three month subscription is $28.  I also ended up getting an additional 16% off using a discount code from Living Social that's no longer working and with Ebates.  In all, after my discounts were applied, it came to $7.84 per box, which I thought was a pretty good deal, so I decided to give Conscious Box another try.

Conscious Box Plus June 2014 (Classic Box):

*Cost:  $16.95/month, free shipping & handling
*What you get:  8-12 items of natural, GMO-free products (ie. snacks, household cleaners, beauty products, etc...) to try.  Conscious Box says this box will have more full size and premium products as well.

Every box comes with a printed card detailing the items in your box.  The theme of this month's box is "In the Summertime."
Super Eats: Kale + Chia Chips with Sea Salt (1.5 oz.) - $1.04
~I had never heard of these chips and seriously wanted to like them but it just is not happening for me, my husband either.  They definitely taste like kale, which I do normally enjoy and I even really like homemade kale chips, but these are actually in a potato chip form and are really quite dry and bland. 

Quit Tea (1 tea bag) - $0.65
~The inclusion of this product in a subscription box kind of confuses me because it is such a niche product.  It's touted as a natural aid to help quit smoking.  I don't smoke so I really have no need for it.  I 'll probably give it to someone I know who is trying to quit smoking. 

Somerset's: Extra Delicate English Shaving Oil (sample size ~1ml) - $0.37 *estimated guess
~This product is new to me.  It's sad to say but I normally use the soap suds from my body wash as my shaving "cream" in the shower.  I've never tried using a shaving oil before but I like the idea.  Over the last year or so, I've been experimenting with different oils on my skin for moisturizers so this is really intriguing for me.  The sample size is pretty tiny but I should be able to get a few uses out if it since it's designed for use on the bikini line.  I can't wait to try it out! 

Bolt Tape (1 Strip) - $3.50
Bolt tape is a new product to me.  The product information says it will provide localized pain relief by continual microcurrent therapy.  One strip is supposed to work for 3-5 days of wear.  I'm going to give this to my husband to try out.  I hope it works, because he could use some relief!

Spatone Pur-absorb Iron (0.67 fl.oz) - $0.73
This is a liquid iron supplement.  I am not much for taking a lot of supplements every day and I get plenty of iron in my diet so this product just isn't for me.

MRM: Elite Performance Protein Powder in Vanilla (11 g) - $0.43
This was another one I am not excited about.  Oh well, on to the next item...

Natralia: Heel Balm (0.10 oz) - $0.43
This is an Australian product designed to hydrate your rough, dry heels.  I imagine it would also be great on elbows, too.  Of course I won't be able to test that idea out because the sample is probably enough for one, maybe two uses on both my feet. It's not enough to know for sure if this product will work on my feet like it claims it will.  I'll try it out but it will really have to WOW me for me to buy it on my own.  (Just including a coupon for $1 off doesn't do the trick, either!)

Somerset's: Extra Sensitive English Shaving Oil (sample size ~1ml) - $0.37 *estimated guess
Obviously someone was not paying attention when taking photo's of the products in this box!  I totally missed that I have two different Somerset products or I would have placed them in the same photo together.  Whoopsie daisies!!!  This one is actually designed for legs and underarms.  I'll stick to using it for my underarms so I get a couple more uses out of it.

Equal Exchange: Milk Chocolate Crisp Bar - $2.83
These bars are organic, fair trade and kosher.  Chocolate is always a hit with me so I am very happy finding so much chocolate in my box this month.

Equal Exchange: Caramel Crunch Dark Chocolate Bar - $5.17
Oh my word, Caramel....dark chocolate...sea's like a taste of heaven!!!

Helwa: Free Time Belgian Chocolate Waffer Bars - $2.59
These are gluten free wafer bars.  They are really tasty too!

Weleda: Oat Replenishing Shampoo & Conditioner (0.34 fl.oz. each) - $0.20 each
Again I am not particularly crazy about one use samples. However, these are pretty convenient for traveling so I'll use it.

Conscious Box also included a $100 off voucher to when you spend $160.

My thoughts:
The June box was just sort of ho-hum for me. There wasn't a product in it that really, really excited me.  The value of the box overall was good.  I figured it at about $18.51 a box, so I definitely got my money's worth out of it. (I'm not including the $100 off voucher in my estimate because I have to buy product in order to get the discount.) The chocolate probably my favorite item in the box.  I know I'll enjoy that for sure.  Another nice thing about the box is I did discover a lot of products that were new to me, however the sample sizes were just way too small and that really turns me off.  I was really hoping for more super sized samples (that have at least 5-7 days of use) from a Plus box.  I also really don't care for the supplements, but that's just a personal preference.   It doesn't feel much different then the type of products I got when I first subscribed to this box so I am disappointed with that.  I was also hoping for more premium brands.  Besides the chocolate, the other items feel like products I would find in my local drugstore, which isn't necessarily a bad thing but maybe my expectations are just too high.  I've got two more boxes left on my subscription so we'll see what July and August bring.


Disclosure: I am an Affiliate.