Thursday, May 15, 2014

imPress Voxbox

Got my first influenster's voxbox. Yayness! 
What was in the box you ask? imPress press-on manicure nails. They're very nice nails, and seeing as I hate nail glue these are for sure going to get my stamp of approval.


The nails I got in the mail:



The instructions on the back:


Clean your natural nails off with the pad that comes inside the box before putting them on.Easy application (peel off film, press on.) Easy removal (peel off or use nail polish remover before peeling.)

These aren`t like those cheap halloween nails. They come in multiple designs, better packaging, and better quality. However the cons of the nails are after you`ve warn them there aren`t any little strips of glue you can press onto the nail again. So it`s a 1 time nail which I find a tad wasteful.


Make sure you trim your nails if they are too long. You don`t want your real nails peeking out above your imPress ones.

Picking out which nails would fit is a bit time consuming. It recommends you do thumb nails last, but I say do both thumb and index fingers last so it`s easier for you to peel off the little sheets on the nails. 

There are 24 in one pack, enough to pick sizes and wear 2 weeks straight if you wish to do so.

Small dilemmas:  
Scratching. It got awkward when I needed to scratch my head, nose or ear. Suddenly I was very aware of how much I needed to scratch. 
Opening cans. I had to use a paper clip to open a pop can because there is no way my fake nails would withstand me trying to use them to hoist up a pop tab.
Brushing Hair: Every time I tried to brush my hair strands would get caught in the nails near the cuticles and tug. It even took a bit of hair with it and yanked it off, ow.
Leftovers: Bits of food would get stuck inbetween the fake nail and my real nail making it hard to get out without the help of a toothpick.

In the end, I don`t think they will last a week unless you never: wash your hands, brush your hair, have pets, itch, house choirs (laundry, dishes, etc), or bath. So ya... depending on how you treat them they should definitely last you 3 days. 

For me my nails lasted to the morning of the 4th day. By the end of the 3rd day they were flimsy and would push into my cuticles which was not pleasant but I hung in there till the next day. I let my nails soak in the bath before taking them off. They were pretty easy because they were already coming off, however if yours are not and you want them off do not pull them off (you'd hurt yourself) try dipping your fingers in nail polish remover so it lifts off more easily and pain free.

Once I removed them I missed them already. They were nice, stylish and easy. But \unless you're traveling or have a bunch of plans for the week I don't think it's worth spending the money for 1 package that would only last you a week. If they put little pre-made glue strips in the pack so you could stick them on the nail to reuse them then it would definitely be worth it.
If you happen to be one of those manicure happy spenders who always go to a salon, then this would save you money.

 I give them a B. I like them, they have the same annoying qualities of other fake nails, but they're instant and you won't have possible fungus growing after they're off like nail glue ones that stay on for a month or so. Just make sure to get the bits of stuck food out of the crack between your real and fake nail. They also keep their top quality design, unlike nail polish which smudges or begins to chip off the very next day.


*I received all products complimentary from influensters. 





Thursday, May 8, 2014

Coconut Oil

Yes the almighty coconut oil. I have taken to the trend and tried it myself (I have eczema so anything that isn't a cream is bliss.)
First you will want to look for ORGANIC VIRGIN Coconut Oil. It's pure so your skin/insides will get the health and healing benefits.

Know that everyone has different reactions to products so just because these were my experiences, doesn't mean they will be yours. 
Also always test something new to you before going all in. I'd hate to see someone gulp down some coconut oil and find out -woopsie- they are allergic. So do a small patch test on yourself, if that's good then take a tiny tiny bit in your mouth if the next day all is still good then up it only a bit to make sure you are in the clear. If it's still good, then your good to go.

I have only tried one brand (Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil) but there are many out there, find what is right for you (both in price and taste) just make sure it is Organic Virgin Coconut oil!

Storage:

You can have it in your cupboard or in your fridge. In the end it's up to you.

How to Eat it:

When it's cold the coconut oil is solid, like lard (sorry if that turned you off). When it's warm/hot it's melted like other bottled oils you've seen. 
How to eat it is up to you. If you like to eat it straight up, you can grab a teaspoon/tablespoon scoop some out of the jar and then eat it. If you want it to be oil you can put the spoon in the microwave for 15-30 seconds to melt it, or put some in a tiny cup and leave it in very hot water til it's melted.

If you are like me and absolutely hate the taste, you will have to get creative and mix the coconut oil with something. 
  • coffee lovers, put the amount you want in your coffee stir and drink.
  • melt coconut oil first, then put it in half a cup of chocolate milk, stir and down asap (or it will harden)
  • If your a smoothie guru, put it in your smoothie and sip away
  • bake it into a dish/desert. You can use it for frying instead of cooking spray, or mix into scrambled eggs
That's unfortunately all I can help with as I have not been successful with anything else. Do your own search, experiment and if those don't work and you can't find anything else, try as the benefits really are worth it, but if you can't the good news is it's great for so much more than eating.

Energy:

I read quite a few people take this for a energy boost, but for me it seemed to do the opposite. As soon as I take it, I get tired. So if this happens to you as well, I recommend you only take it like an hour before you want to go to bed so you can have a sound sleep.

Hair:

I have used it for my hair, and it works very well. My sculpt is moisturized and my hair gets super silky soft. I haven't used it consistently (only because I don't have the $$ to do so) but I would like to see if this truly does get rid of dandruff like others claim. 
What you do is rub it in your hands to melt a bit, then apply to your whole head of hair to the bottom. You can put on a cap and leave it or wrap it in a towel. Leave it on for whatever suits you, but if possible leave on for atleast 30 minutes; beneficial time is 1 hour. I don't recommend you leave it on for more than 3 hours as you can over nourish your sculpt making it do the opposite (fall out). So leave it in 30 mins-2 hours wrapped so the oil can seep in your sculpt. Many have said they leave it in over night, you can if you want; just remember my warning about over nourishing.
Once you're ready to wash grab your shampoo and wash the coconut oil, TWICE. You want to make sure you get the coconut oil out so shampooing twice is the best way. Then (optional) condition your hair and rinse and voila, great clean and silky hair. Do this once a week.

Eczema:

I have eczema on my hands (genetics), and mine looks like tiny little blisters when they pop up. It gets itchy and I wash my hands alot so my hands get super dry. It happens when the wind in winter dries out my hands even more, or in summer when it's uber hot and my hands sweat. But that's not all, I'm sure it's soap I use that contributes on many off moments. ANYWAYS. 
I have used it on my hands and I can say it does help alot, but you will want to make sure to put it on after every time you wash your hands. Coconut oil is great because it's natural so if you're eating something and have to use your hands (ie: chips) you won't taste some nasty chemical lotion by accident or leaving it behind in your bag of chips; it's natural. The only thing you have to worry about is getting it all over your keyboard, but it wipes off.
Coconut oil has helped my Eczema very well, but it can only do so much. Every once in a blue moon I still have to use my prescription cream when it pops up too fast at once (the cream thins skin, thus making eczema worse so having to barely use it is greatly appreciated). But yes, this is my holy grail for my eczema, for 90% of the time it helps prevent/reverse my eczema and that alone is why I kept it before trying anywhere else.

Face/Acne:

Not sure if it helps with acne. I know my face is VERY sensitive and I can use nothing without some sort of horrid reaction. I always have had these two deep pink spots on my cheeks (makes me look like I have permanent blush) and for the life of me could not get rid of it.
When I used coconut oil on my face, no negative reactions and the pink is barely there!! This made me so happy. Obviously I have to try out more natural ways for my face instead of harsh cleansers/moisturizers since clearly no matter how "sensitive skin approved" they claim them to be; they really aren't. As soon as I try some out for a bit I will post (since I need more than just coconut oil for moisturizing; I need a scrub and quick wash).  
Acne HAS been good, still there here and there but I've never really had that much to begin with, but I do have it. I'm sure if I wasn't too lazy to moisturize my face more I would get more of the benefits and see better results, but as soon as I find a natural cleanse I have a feeling I will be more gung-ho about using coconut oil atleast twice a day instead of the one time before I sleep (just to be wiped off on my pillow).

*You should know that your acne could get/will get worse before it gets better because the coconut oil is going deep deep into your pores to bring out all the toxins. So as it's doing this the toxins rise to the surface and the deeper it gets the more horrible your pimples will look to you. You will probably think it's not working when this happens to you but it's normal and means its working, so if you try coconut oil I recommend you do it while you're mostly inside your house if you're worried about showing your face after it works. After it goes deep and does it's detoxing of your skin and whatever gunk built up under it for years and years, it will be clearer. However you know you, so if you think it isn't working for you, then stop using it, and remember to do a patch test before putting it all over your face so you know it's not an allergic reaction. If you want a higher possibility of it clearing your acne, you will want to take it for any internal problems (cleansing outside and inside will help with acne).

Coconut oil is also used to clean off your makeup. Warm it up in your hands and put it all over your face where your makeup is, wash off with warm water and then pat dry. 
Helps with dry lips as well.

Constipation:

I am not sure if it works for constipation yet, I'm still testing that theory out (it's really hard for me to get the coconut oil down as I cannot for the life of me get past the taste. I hate it.) 
If you are trying it for constipation make sure to go slowly with teaspoons first, then up to 1 tablespoon after your system is use to it (coconut oil cleanses you of toxins so if it's your first time trying coconut oil and you take 2 tablespoons before your ready, it will try to flush the toxins too fast and you may get diarrhea and have flu like symptoms -runny nose,etc- because it's detoxing. Don't be scared, just cut your intake back. Slow and steady).
Everyone is different, for me I tried 3 tablespoons once and still nothing (except for nausea from trying to take it straight on an empty stomach) but for you, it could be too much.

Other:

Coconut oil has SPF so you can glob it all over for extra protection (it doesn't have a lot of SPF so don't replace your sunscreen with this, it will just be extra helpful for lips, ears, nails, feet, sculpt, etc).

Lubricant. - If you need a little help with "insertion" coconut oil is a natural lubricant that can be used for the down stairs. 

Oil Pulling.- Put a tablespoons worth in your mouth and swish around for up to 20 minutes (it's ok if you can't make it that long). Swish it like you would with mouth wash, back and forth, in between teeth, do NOT gargle or swallow! It is pulling the toxins out of your mouth you don't want to swallow them. Doing oil pulling will also help whiten your teeth.

Massage oil - You can warm this up with your hands and use it to massage yourself or have someone else massage you (feet, back, whatever suits your fancy).

Psoriasis - I read besides eczema it also helps soothe psoriasis, but as I do not have psoriasis I cannot tell you if this is true.

End Note:

I have been using coconut oil for 4 months (more religiously for my hands and face) but I will still be trying to plug my nose and down it for the health benefits and possible helping hand for constipation. 
I read so much about how it helps weight loss, but again I have no idea yet if that's true since I can hardly consume the product and naturally would assume if I did lose weight it'd be because of my exercise not the oil.

**Did NOT work for my acne, but it did help with the redness. So do not use coconut oil if you want to be blemish free.**

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Bouncy Bouncy

This year I got into the whole Rebounding thing. I thought it sounded great, especially since I seem to be super fragile (no kidding, I always get hurt/sick if I do/try a exercise). This is sort of my last hope for exercise so here's hoping it works. So far YES it does! I have NOT gotten sick, or had any injuries and that is a keeper in my book! It's also fun! Bouncing and bouncing, it's not boring. Ever notice the things we did as kids, seem to be the best things now? (ie Trampolines, and Skipping- yes skipping is also a very very good exercise no matter how silly it may seem).

Ladies - Wear a good sports bra when jumping.

Benefit:

Rebounders are designed to help give you a good workout with the least amount of jarring your joints. When you land, it's soft and off the ground so you won't be causing constant damage as you would if you were on the floor/outside running. You can use it with or without shoes, but if you want to have extra joint protection I suggest you wear good shoes (with any exercise you do, even with a game like Zumba.) 
Jumping on the Rebounder helps get your lymphatic system moving (very important since it needs you to move, before it can move). There are many benefits to using the Rebounder, if you listen to your body and don't over do it. 
I've read others have had someone jump on the trampoline while they've sat on it because of lack of motion/ injury and had good results; doesn't mean it will work for you too if you're seriously injured, just wanted to throw it out there. 
No boredom - You can watch tv or listen to music as you bounce away on your rebounder.

Rebounder:

I have the Urban Rebounder, so far so good. It's cheap(ish) and sturdy, I would recommend it if you're just starting out and have a tight budget. It comes with a stabilizing bar so if you're elderly or afraid/clumsy this is very helpful. It also folds so you can put it away if you don't have much room, but be very careful as it is difficult to fold and unfold, so if possible try to keep it unfolded. It also has extra legs so you can prop it on a angle and use the elevated dvd that comes with it (running off and on it). I got mine from Amazon not the main site. If you do however have a bigger wallet, do some research there are plenty of high praised rebounders out there.

Like every new thing, make sure you can use it (if you have any physical injuries or problems ask your doctor or physiotherapist if this is ok to use.) Do more research on it before you buy it. Once you buy it SLOWLY introduce yourself to it. You don't want to hurt any old injuries if you do too much too soon (and yes that is very easy to do, so start off with just a light bounce for a few minutes, no longer than 5mins for the first few times and slowly work yourself up, but don't try to do 20 minutes everyday that's just asking to hurt something). 
If you have a serious back injury, and your doctor/physiotherapist approved this for you, start off with the "health bounce", where you do not take your feet off the rebounder, you use your knees/heels of feet to push into the netting making yourself bounce (instead of jumping slightly in the air). After doing this for a couple weeks and it doesn't hurt your back, then slowly integrate to normal jumping; if normal jumping still hurts your back either cut back the amount of time your jumping or go back to the health bounce until your back can handle the normal jumping; never force it.

 I read somewhere that someone did rebounding for 20 minutes everyday for 3 weeks and lost their muffin top. I DO NOT recommend this if you are just starting out, and even then I don't think it's very wise as (again) you can overdo it and your body does need a break to recover. It is very important to takes breaks (don't listen to people/programs saying do exercise every single day for so and so minutes; if you do that your body won't be able to recover to get stronger and you will harm yourself).

I wish you luck if you get yourself a rebounder. As I wish myself luck with losing my little pouch of a belly.

My Progress:


I myself know I have to take it easy but I am desperately trying to see if I can lose weight (well inches to be exact). So I'm trying very hard not to go all procrastinate-y (I get lazy when it comes to physical exercise, even if I do love the rebounder.) So I have been doing the shortest video (so about 21minutes) for about 3-4 times a week. 

I will update with my results. So far week 1 has gone by successfully (ie I haven't stopped doing it after a day lol). Going onto week 2. I am using the dvd that came with my urban rebounder (compilation 1) but if you end up getting a different rebounder/not liking the dvd with it then you can always browse youtube. I've seen rebounding videos there. Remember if you see a move you know will hurt any injury of yours, avoid it and do something else (walk on the spot/light bounce) or try to tone it down.

Week 1- Success. 4x 20mins
Week 2- Success 3x 20mins
Week 3- *Took a few days off from exercising; Slept wrong so my neck got kinked and is still too sore to move.*
Week 4- Half success 2 1/2x 20mins (computer glitched half way through my workout so I had to stop) Not doing too well on the consistency thing but atleast you can see how much a lazy procrastinator may lose. I would be losing weight faster if I didn't drink so much pop, but I'm not giving that up. Also if I had normal BM's but I have chronic constipation.

My loss so far:  
Measurements before workout- 32.5inch (at the tip of belly button)  34inch (the gut below)
Measurements at this moment: 29inch (tip of belly b)  31inch (gut)

Week 5- Success 3x 20mins

Friday, May 2, 2014

BzzAgent

If you want a free product program that works, go with BzzAgent.I got a Herbal Essences Naked Volumizing shampoo and conditioner, souffle (mousse), and travel sizes for my first campaign. They smell awesome (white grapefruit and mint) the best thing is the smell actually STAYS in your hair after you're out of the shower! (You don't always get that lucky). So when I tried it I ended up constantly sneaking a sniff of my hair. 
I put it to the test and used it when my hair was a bit knotted/tangled and I can say it's a good detangler. My hair was very smooth and soft. It rinsed out easy with no residue/buildup afterwards.
Best of all it contains no dyes, no parabens, and the shampoo contains no silicone.
I myself love Herbal, so this was really nice to have to try FOR FREE (I love free). And because I love Herbal I thought it was really great that they took a step in the right direction and offered a more natural shampoo & conditioner; atleast they actually listen and try (I'm not saying it's 100% natural but it doesn't have to be, but if you want something you can confidently use without worry and have it for cheap, this is for sure for you, like it is for me.)

I never got to try the souffle yet, I honestly never tried mousse so i'm not quite sure what to do but I will for sure be using it soon (don't want to waste it so I'm saving it for special days only).

The new Herbal Essences Naked line is a definite keeper, and gets a A+ from me.