Monday, April 23, 2018

Harman Kardon Allure Voice-Activated Home Speaker with Alexa Review

Harman Kardon Allure Voice-Activated Home Speaker with Alexa

Best Bluetooth Speaker

The Harmon Kardon Allure Home Speaker comes equipped with Alexa and voice-activation. It's a powerful, 360-degree home speaker. Place it in the middle of your room for the same, beautiful sound no matter where you go in the room. It's a nice-looking speaker that lights up blue so you will want to show it off. The Allure is the best speaker I've come across.

Features at a Glance: 

  • Wireless Bluetooth
  • Amazon Alexa Powered
  • 360-Degree Sound
  • 4 Microphones for Far Field Voice-Recognition
  • Pleasing Design
  • Dual-Band WI-FI


  • Easy to set up
  • Affordable
  • Sounds so Good


  • No bass/treble control - I know, I'm getting super technical here. It's the only downside I can think of! A lot of the songs I listen to have a lot of bass. I like that, but the neighbors probably don't. The only way to fix it is to turn it down lower than I'd like to. If I could adjust the bass, I wouldn't have to turn the volume down so low. So, yes, that's my one complaint. The sound is too good.

My Opinion:

I have been using this speaker every day. I keep it in my office and listen to my Spotify playlists on it. I ask Alexa questions when they arise, which is often when you're a freelance writer. I love that I can connect it to my phone to listen to Spotify. I can also have Alexa read my Kindle books to me, or play my Amazon music. The Allure is an all-around excellent Bluetooth speaker. I LOVE it.

Disclosure: I receive products in exchange for writing reviews. There may be affiliate links in this blog. I'll earn a commission if you buy something through these links. 

Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Neck Hammock Review

The Neck Hammock is a portable device that allows you to stretch the cervical part of your spine (in your neck). You can attach it to a doorway or railing and take it with you when traveling. The package comes with a travel bag, two medical grade straps, the neck hammock, a sleeping mask, and eBook on stretching. The Neck Hammock was created by a licensed physical therapist, Dr. Steve Sudell, Jr.


  • Works in just 10 minutes a day
  • Portable so you can take it anywhere
  • Relieves pain
  • Improves circulation

It takes a few minutes to learn how to set it up the first time, but once you understand how to do it you're all set. 

Our Opinion:

It's a little awkward hooking it up to a door and lying on the floor to use the device. I would like to see it come with something to hold it up so you didn't have to attach it to a doorway or railing.

As someone who works on a computer all day, I often get neck pain. The Neck Hammock relieves that pain, and it really does work in just 10 minutes. I don't need to use it every day, but it's great to have that relief. There isn't another way to stretch your neck like this. 

Click Here To Buy

Disclosure: I receive products in exchange for writing reviews. There may be affiliate links in this blog. I'll earn a commission if you buy something through these links. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Bourbon Caramel Dark Chocolate Truffles Recipe with David Nicholson Reserve

Bourbon Caramel Dark Truffles with David Nicholson Reserve make the perfect homemade gift!

  1. 9 oz. 60% dark chocolate chips
  2. 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream (or coconut milk for dairy free)
  3. 2 tbsp bourbon
for optional caramel swirl
  1. 1/2 cup sugar
  2. 1/8 cup water
  3. 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  4. 1 tbsp butter
for optional coating
  1. cacao powder
  2. sprinkles
  1. combine sugar and water for caramel in small saucepan on med. heat for 10 min (1/4 cup sugar + 1/8 cup water)
  2. add 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  3. simmer 2 min, then add butter and remove caramel from heat
  4. chop chocolate into small bits
  5. in a small saucepan heat 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream to simmer, remove from heat, pour over chopped chocolate in heat safe bowl
  6. stir until smooth
  7. you may use the microwave in 15 second increments for additional melting help if necessary
  8. let cool for 2 min and pour in bourbon, mix
  9. swirl in about 2/3 of the caramel, marble style. eat the rest by hand jk, use it for dipping or something
  10. cover and place in fridge to chill for 1 hr
  11. scoop out chocolate using a melon baller, roll gently between hands until round, be gentle and patient
  12. coat in cacao or sprinkles by rolling ball on plate
  1. I used Ghirardelli 60% cacao chocolate chips
  2. I did not mis-spell cocoa, I meant cacao. its more rich in flavor and adds a nice tartness. but you can use cocoa if you waaaaant 🙂

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

How to Calm Crazy Waves and Unruly Curls International Curl Expert Shares Tips

For those with naturally wavy, curly hair of all coils and textures it may seem like an endless battle to find ways to tame the mane. Some may turn to relaxers, weekly blowouts or extensions. Others just want to master their natural hair in whatever mood it seems to be in. To help girls get a handle on their curls we connected with Maya Smith, founder of The Doux salon and product line of the same name both specializing in making the absolute most of the natural hair you’re born with. When it comes to healthy sculptured, cool looking curls of all types, Maya’s two decades of experience with curls worldwide makes her a true expert. Here she offers tips on how to calm crazy waves and unruly curls.

#1: My naturally wavy hair is flat at the top and then waves start in the middle with tighter curls at the back. HELP!

Genetics determine curl pattern and density. It’s totally normal, in fact, quite common for several different textures to exist on the same head of hair. These inconsistencies can cause the hair to look uneven, and are most apparent once the hair has dried. I created The Doux’s Mousse Def, to help define waves and curls in the less curly areas, and to combat frizz in the areas that are tightly coiled. To balance the look of curly and wavy hair, we recommend using a combo of a mousse on the straighter areas, and then a balm like The Doux’s Bonita Afro Balm Texture Cream for added stretch and control in the tighter areas. The goal here is to keep hair shiny, touchable, and soft. If shrinkage or frizzing remains an issue, don’t underestimate the power of a great haircut. Awesome products combined with a professionally-shaped set of layers is my signature Rx for accentuating curls that vary in texture.

#2: I have curly hair and let it dry naturally. The second it rains, I get frizzy at the roots. I find myself revolving my hairstyle around the weather report. HELP!

Thirsty hair will try to “drink up” moisture in the air if it’s not adequately hydrated.
The key to eliminating frizz due to humidity exposure is to make sure that the hair is thoroughly conditioned before styling products are applied. This exact problem is what inspired me to create a solution in the form of a Fresh Rinse Moisturizing Conditioner, followed by The Light Shine Mist helps to hydrate and stabilize the cuticle, making it less prone to reversion. For added control at the roots, we apply a small amount of Bonita Afro Balm, which is our secret weapon for keeping curly hair from swelling in harsh weather conditions. These products can be found at select Target stores nationwide and at

 #3: I often wear my curly hair slicked back into a tight low bun or ponytail. Will this damage my hair? 

Style in moderation. Traction alopecia is a major epidemic among women with textured hair. This is typically the result of too much tension being applied to scalp for an extended period of time, and usually occurs due to hair styling such as braids, extensions, and tight ponytails. To avoid irreversible thinning of the hair, it’s important to avoid hairstyles that place constant pressure on hair, particularly in the temple and nape areas. Ponytails and “slicked” styles should be taken down at night, and tight accessories, such as headbands or scrunchies should be worn less frequently. 

#4: I wear my naturally kinky hair twisted and braided. How long could I leave this style in and how best to shampoo my hair while in this style?

I recommend shampooing once per week for hair with fine-to-medium density. I urge clients with high-density or extremely long hair, not to exceed more than 10 days without cleansing the hair and scalp. This helps eliminate bacterial growth that causes itching, flaking, and dandruff on the scalp. We use The Doux’s Sucka Free Moisturizing Shampoo to remove product build-up and dead skill cells, and Fresh Rinse Moisturizing Conditioner to soften, hydrate, and balance the hair’s pH. We’ve incorporated Shea Butter and Sea Silk to smooth the hair shaft and aid in moisture retention.

#5: What are some ingredients to avoid that many products for curly hair contain? Why is this damaging? 

Petroleum-based “grease,” as well as products that contain mineral oil may be old-school favorites, but are often the cause of dry hair. Heavy products that aren’t water soluble can coat the hair shaft, disrupting the hair’s natural ability to retain moisture. This dryness may go nearly undetected, because the hair is covered in product, however, the underlying dehydration causes hair to be brittle and stubborn. We recommend cream-based products that shampoo out easily, and allow the hair to “breathe.”

About Maya Smith:

Maya Smith is an International Master Stylist and Founder of The Doux Salon and haircare line now available in Target. With over two decades of styling experience Maya dedicated two decades to cracking the code on curl care, maintenance and expert styling. When it comes to caring for one’s natural hair and styling it, according to NaturallyCurly, Maya is among the best there is.

While still in high school, Maya got her hair cutting license and graduated from beauty school. Soon after graduating high school, Maya began following her passion and worked as an assistant for celebrity stylist Tracy Johnson. She learned from Johnson and progressed as a hair stylist for celebrities and entertainers. Years later the military wife would relocate to Germany, where Maya opened up her first salon The HoneyComb, a mecca for textured hair care for women from all over Europe, The UK, and as far as Africa. Maya's unique system of textured hair styling sparked the development of The DOUX® haircare products, first launched overseas, and distributed throughout Germany, France, Italy, and the Netherlands. 

Currently, Maya leads a carefully selected team of stylists at The DOUX® Salon in Macon, Georgia and celebrated the arrival of The DOUX® in select Target stores nationwide. Maya Smith, wife, mom of 5 and savvy business woman is an example not just for women of color but for all women who believe their gifts can impact the world, striving for entrepreneurial endeavors with grace, ease and hustle.

Monday, February 19, 2018

TrickleStar USB Motion Sensor Energy Saver Review

The TrickleStar USB Motion Sensor is the perfect energy saver for desktop users. Plug the USB into your computer and configure your timer. The timer can be set for 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 minutes. So, if you walk away from your computer and haven't used in your slotted time, the TrickleStar will automatically put your computer to sleep.

It's compatible with Mac and PC computers.

A red and blue flashing light will let you know when it's about to send a sleep command to your computer. If you want to stop the command just hit the move your mouse.

You can hit the quick activation button if you already know you'll be away from your computer for some time.

Easy set up.

The TrickleStar USB Motion Sensor will save you on energy by putting your computer to sleep when not in use.

Disclosure: I receive products in exchange for writing reviews. There may be affiliate links in this blog. I'll earn a commission if you buy something through these links. 

Monday, February 12, 2018

Valentine's Day Gifts

Happy Valentine's Day! Here's our gift guide with gifts for everyone on your list.


Eclair Naturals All Over Lotion & Scrubs

Treat your Valentine with Eclair Naturals' Himalayan Salt Scrub, Dead Sea Salt Scrub, and the All Over Lotion. She'll feel pampered with the nourishing ingredients of jojoba oil, almond oil and mineral-rich salts.  The scrubs exfoliate, getting rid of dead skin cells, leaving skin new and fresh. The lotion hydrates and dries quickly. Add all three to a basket with a bow for a nice gift presentation. 

Mohu Arc Antenna

Mohu makes these amazing TV antennas so you can cut the cord with your cable TV company and use Mohu. Just plug in the antenna to get free access to all of your local HDTV channels - the perfect gift for your TV-loving, cable-bill-hating Valentine. Use it indoors (you can even paint it to match your decor). Super easy to set up. If you need help cutting the cord, use Mohu's free service, Untangle to help guide you through the process.

Everything Grows with Love by Irene Smit and Astrid Van Der Hulst

Everything Grows with Love is filled with inspirational quotes, affirmations and sayings paired with beautiful graphics and illustrations. Great gift for Valentine's Day. Open each day with a new quote. 

Love Uncensored Postcards

Love Uncensored Postcards is a hilarious, sexy, naughty, romantic collection of 50 postcards you can tear out and give to your love. Mail, pin or slip one under the door. Perfect gift for Valentine's Day!

Gold Toe Socks

Grab a pair of Gold Toe's Luxury Socks in English Red with a pink ribbed pair, and then choose a bunch more for a bouquet of the most comfortable socks she'll ever wear.
They have awesome men's and kid's socks, too!

Pilot Pen G2 Limited in Red

Pilot's pens are quality-made with an affordable price. The G2 Premium Gel Roller write smooth without the bleed through, and it writes longer than the other gel pens. It's a beautiful pen for your Valentine. 

Pilot Frixion Colors Erasable Marker

Yeah, erasable markers! Perfect for writing, drawing, coloring - anything. The ink erases without damaging the paper or leaving a shadow. Wrap these up in a bow for a cute Valentine's Day gift.  

Retro Viewer

With the Retro Viewer you can get creative and unique with your gift. Upload your images to create your own reel. This is a custom, romantic gift you both can enjoy for years to come. 

What is your ideal Valentine's Day gift?

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

EOS Lip Balm's New Vegan Crystal Flavors Review

Evolution of Smooth (EOS) makes a variety of beauty products, including lip balms, shaving creams, and hand and body lotions. EOS uses high-quality ingredients with stellar colors, wonderful scents, and yummy flavors.

The New Look
EOS is widely known for their nice lip balms in round containers that lip balm companies have never used before. EOS has upgraded their unique packaging with these new, vegan crystal lip balms. The containers are now pegboard shaped instead of just rounded like an egg. As an added bonus, there’s a clear cover for the balm. Even the balm itself looks different! Instead of a white lip balm, these new ones are completely translucent. It’s jellified!

No More Wax
Due to customer complaints about the waxes used in the formula making the lip balm feel rubbery, EOS decided to create the vegan crystal balms with absolutely no wax. The result is a smooth, dewy, hydrating lip balm.

Vegan Lip Balm
EOS is now breaking the vegan barrier with their new, vegan, crystal flavored lip balms. The vegan crystal lip balms debuted with two flavor options: Hibiscus Peach and Vanilla Orchid. There's no wax in these lip balms so your lips won't feel weighed down by that ingredient. The beneficial ingredients include shea butter, cocoa butter, castor seed oil, aloe oil, coconut oil, sunflower seed oil, and avocado oil. The five natural oils in these balms help nourish and moisturize chapped, dry lips quickly.

EOS Vegan Crystal Lip Balm Features:
  • Hypoallergenic – perfect for those with sensitive skin
  • 100% wax-free – wax ingredients weigh down the formula, making lip balms feel heavy
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-free
  • No Parabens
  • No Petroleum
  • Not Tested On Animals
  • No Water
  • No Preservatives

Check out the new EOS Vegan Crystal Lip Balms at Amazon!

Disclosure: I receive products in exchange for writing reviews. There may be affiliate links in this blog. I'll earn a commission if you buy something through these links. 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018


Exercise is good for the body and mind and did you know exercise and sweating is good for your skin, too? Dr. Margarita Lolis, a New Jersey board certified dermatologist explains that, "When exercising we release toxins from our skin, opening up and clear out our pores. However, if you miss one important step when it comes to exercising and skin, you'll start to notice your skin going downhill." Here are some pointers to help your skin look its post-workout best.

A head-to-toe routine is a must Dr. Lolis found that those who work out several times per week seem to have similar skin issues. These 14 Skincare Hacks for Gym Rats provided by Dr. Lolis, are based on the common issues her own patients often face.

1. Use disposable body wipes or medicated/herbal wet tissues right after a workout. This will help in removing excess oil from your skin.

2. Always carry a small towel with you to wipe the excess sweat.

3. Avoid touching your face with bare hands to keep bacterial infections and acne at bay.

4. Use a foot deodorizer to clean your feet after a heavy workout.

5. Skip the tanning bed. It's harmful to your skin, in so many ways. There's also the range of cosmetic skin concerns, like wrinkles and sun spots. Opt for a self-tanning lotion or simply working out outdoors with SPF will give you a natural glow.

6. BYOT (Bring Your Own Towel!) If you opt for a gym washroom for a shower, be careful of the towels and cleansing products you use. Do not use towels already used by someone. The sweat of other people can cause acne on your skin. Cleaning your skin should be hygienic.

7. Wear fresh clothes after showering. Also, avoid wearing gym clothes after washing yourself clean. Gym clothes will be sweaty and grimy; they may cause acne and other skin related problems.

8. Avoid close contact. Other people's sweat may also cause skin acne, pimples and other related problems. That hug to your trainer or gym buddy can end up triggering a breakout.

9. Skip the hot water. Sure, your muscles are sore, and you're in the mood for a hot shower after a workout. Hot water strips skin of vital oils, leaving you with dry, itchy, dull skin.

10. Reduce the redness. Calm down a flushed face with your own redness control remedy made up of a little bit of iced green tea and a spray bottle. You'll cool down your skin and add in a few extra anti-oxidants in the process.

11. Rehydrate your skin.  After enduring a good workout and cleanse, it's critical to re-establish the natural moisture and oils that have been removed from your skin.  When it comes to your face, you really should invest in a high quality, fast-absorbing, nutrient-rich product that includes vitamins A and E and the super-ingredient hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring compound that is expert at restoring moisture to your skin and has also been shown to stimulate collagen production. If you've been exercising outdoors, a moisturizer with anti-oxidant ingredients is important to help repair damage caused by UV exposure and other environmental factors.

12. Go bare. Morning gym people there’s no need to apply make-up. If you work out after work consider taking a face-wipe to remove dirt, make-up which may blend with sweat triggering breakouts. You want your skin to be able to breathe while you're working out.

13. Wear a hairband. Hair should always be pulled back from your face, not only because of sweat, but because of your hair products, too. If you are seeing breakouts on your forehead or hairline, mousses, gels, or other hair products could be to blame. An elastic headband worn behind the ears about an inch from the hairline keeps stray hairs off the face.

14. Wear gloves when working out.  In addition to protecting hands from rough calluses, gloves also prevent the transmission of bacteria and viruses like warts and staphylococcus bacteria; which can cause impetigo. Impetigo is a common skin infection that can be easily transmitted at the gym and result in blisters and sores. If you choose not to wear gloves during a work-out, disinfect your equipment with a wipe or spray.

About Dr. Lolis:
Dr. Margarita Lolis, M.D. is a board-certified cosmetic, medical dermatologist and a fellowship-trained Mohs surgeon with over 20 years of experience. In her practice, she addresses common skin concerns such as acne prevention and treatment in both teens and adults, sun-damage, skin discoloration, wrinkles, changes to skin texture and loss of volume. On the medical side, she is a trusted expert in melanoma and over-all skin health. Dr. Lolis prides herself in honoring facial symmetry to deliver a natural look to her clients. She always recommends a healthy skin care regimen plus lifestyle habits that are aligned with her holistic approach to beauty. Dr. Lolis is a member of the American Academy of Dermatology, American College of Mohs Surgery, and the American Society of Anti-aging. Her practice, Skin, Laser, and SurgerySpecialists is in New York City and Bergen Country, New Jersey.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

KneippLife Sweepstakes

Be Beautiful. Be Loved. Be Harmonious. Be Natural.

Enter your chance to win the Kneipp Life Sweepstakes, featuring:
A trip to the Woodstock Inn in Vermont for you & 3 friends
Kneipp gift baskets
all entrants will receive 20% off their next purchase

Saturday, December 23, 2017

The Frida Kahlo Makeup Brush Sets Review

 The Frida Kahlo Makeup Brush Sets is being released by Anisa International and is being sold on Amazon. You can buy the Kabuki brush, a brush cleaning pad, a bronzer/highlighting brush, and a brush sets. 

 The Kabuki brush and storage case retails for 29 dollars. It has a heavy silver matte handle, with a metallic silver skull one side and Frida Kahlo’s name on the other. It has countless soft white bristles that ombre into a muted grey blue. The brush is very large, perfect for setting the face quickly and flawlessly. I personally love this brush and cannot find anything wrong with it. The case is perfect for travel, and the packaging is beautiful. It has red roses and watermelons sporadically on the packaging, and you can see faint grey patterns behind it. Frida Kahlo’s face is on the front, and her name is printed beautifully under it. The case is good for travel because it can fit many more things than just the kabuki brush, like a powder compact!

The Silicone Brush Cleaning Pad and the Highlighting/BronzerBrush retail for 26 dollars. The cleaning pad is a beautiful shade of red, that suits the packaging of the brushes. It has small nubs so that when cleaning your brushes, you can get a sure deep clean to get out any makeup you might of missed with your bare hands. It has a band to put your fingers in, and the silicone is super easy to rinse off so there’s no makeup residue on the pad. I think that this cleaning pad is a must have, it is perfect for cleaning liquid makeup out of brushes. 

The Bronzer/Highlighting brush has a white handle with a metallic skull on one side, and Frida Kahlo’s name printed on the other, with a silver segment at the base of the bristles. The brush has a slight curve to it, and is perfect for getting under the cheekbones of your cheeks to bronze or contour with powder product. The bristles are extremely soft, and have the same white to blue-grey ombre as the Kabuki does. I personally would not use this brush to highlight with, I think it’s too big and would make too much of a straight line, but others may disagree with me. I love this brush though for bronzing. 

The Face and Eye Brush Set retails for 45 dollars. It comes with four double sided brushes. All of the brushes have silver handles, with a skull design on one side and Frida’s nam on the other. The fluffy paddle powder brush is extremely soft, and versatile. It would be great for spot setting your face, bronzing, or even blush. It also has the same white to blue-grey ombre bristles. The other side of the brush is round and dense, and perfect for blush and contour. I see nothing wrong with either of these brushes. 

The next brush in the set is a foundation and contour brush. The foundation brush side is round and dense. It’s extremely soft, and leaves no brush strokes on your foundation. The other side has a flat dense contour brush, perfect for blending a cream contour flawlessly, also leaving no brush strokes. I cannot find a reason to dislike these brushes either.

The next brush is a eye brush. One side is a blending crease brush. It is extremely soft, and is beautifully tapered, perfect for fitting into the contour of the eye and blending flawlessly. The other side of the brush is a flat fluffy eye brush. It can be used for patting shadow onto the lid, or blending the edges of a shadow. I also think it can be used for contouring the nose with a powder. I love this brush. 

Last but certainly not least in the set, we have another eye detail brush. One side has a thin but dense angled brush, perfect for making a precise sharp line for the brows or eyeliner. The other side has a small tapered blending brush. This can be used for the lower lash line, or adding definition to the crease. I cannot find a reason to detest this brush. 

In conclusion, I think the Frida Kahlo Brush Sets are a must have! I don’t have any reason to dislike any of these brushes, and i’m not surprised they have five stars on 100% of the Amazon reviews. I think these brushes are perfect for travel, or everyday use. 

Disclosure: I receive products in exchange for writing reviews. There may be affiliate links in this blog. I'll earn a commission if you buy something through these links.