Tag Archives: meh

Face Mask Festivities: Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask Edition

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Face Mask Festivities: Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask Edition

Hi! During my last Sephora Haul, I got a bunch of trial sized face masks to try out FO FREE. I have used and enjoyed both the Water Sleeping and lip mask by LANEIGE and tested out the Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask this morning. The clay mask was definitely not my favorite in the world and that’s fine by me since it was a freebie! Take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

I was very excited to try this Innisfree mask because of the “Super Volcanic Clusters”. I thought that it would be similar to the huge pieces of charcoal in my favorite face mask from The Body Shop. The Himalayan Charcoal mask by TBS gives me a skin treatment and an exfoliater in one and it is ultra effective. When using the Innisfree mask for the first time, I was a little disappointed by the smooth texture. It also applied really thin for a clay mask and I never care for that. One positive first impression, though, was how good it smelled! This mask had a beachy scent and that was so refreshing in the morning.

I let the clay mask sit for eight or so minutes before washing it off and was still eager to see the results. Unfortunately, I wasn’t blown away once the mask was off. There were no instantly recognizable improvements to how my skin looked or felt. While I am not expecting miracles, it is nice to see a little something something after using a new mask!

Despite not being crazy about the Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask, it is always fun to try out a new product. This mask just didn’t pack enough of a punch for my liking. As I mentioned before, I am glad that it was free because I do not recommend it. #whompwhomp

What is your favorite face mask? What is your favorite type of skin care to test out? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Face Mask Festivities: Yes To Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask Edition

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Face Mask Festivities: Yes To Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask Edition

Hi! Recently, my mom surprised me with the Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask by Yes To Tomatoes to test out. She is the literal sweetest and knows how much I enjoy doing face masks so every so often when she sees one for a good deal, she will treat me to it. While it wasn’t the best face mask I have ever used, the sentiment behind it was a ten out of ten stars for me! Now, let’s get to it:

I am a huge fan of charcoal skin care products, especially my favorite face bar by Destiny Boutique. I am always eager to test new charcoal products out because they are so effective in clearing the blackheads on my nose. I was expecting two results when using this Yes To Tomatoes mask: Clearing up my problem area as well as giving a nice glow to my skin since my fave face mask by The Body Shop does both. While this mask did clear up a lot of blackheads, it really didn’t do too much else for my skin.

Although I wasn’t overly blown away by the Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask, it did apply very easily. This was nice because some mud masks can be so thick. I had this mask on for about twelve minutes while I did some housework but it dried in roughly ten. I would definitely recommend washing it off right at the ten minute mark because it started feeling uncomfortably tight on my skin after just two additional minutes.

The Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask by Yes To Tomatoes is one that you could take or leave. However, if you’re like me and enjoy testing face masks just for the sake of trying something new, then it wouldn’t hurt to give this one a try if you find it for a marked down price!

What was the best face mask that you have used? Do you have a favorite ingredient when it comes to skin care? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Face Mask Festivities Follow Up: The Body Shop’s Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask Edition

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Face Mask Festivities Follow Up: The Body Shop’s Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask Edition

Howdy! When it comes to bath and body care as well as skin care too, I always find myself partial to products from The Body Shop. In my youth, we always had goodies from TBS handy like their bath beads, bar soap, and shower gel. Then, in my teenage years, my mom took me there for one of my very first skin care and makeup hauls.

The Body Shop always hits right in the nostalgia for me and for good reason! So you could imagine how disappointing it was when all of their storefronts in my area closed several years ago. TJMaxx definitely saved the day when they started carrying TBS products in their beauty department and my mom and I were ecstatic to get our favorite lotions and skin care for a fraction of the cost.

A few months ago, my mom surprised me with The Body Shop’s Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing mask which she found at TJMaxx. It had been a long while since I tested out a new face mask and if you read my original review, you will remember that I felt the mask left a lot to be desired.

While I always enjoy using a new face mask, good or bad, I did find myself a bit disappointed with the Pollution Clearing mask. Yes, my skin felt slightly softer and looked a tad brighter but that was about it and I was very surprised to see so many five star reviews for it on Google. The reviews made me feel like I was missing something and I also refused to believe that The Body Shop could have made such a dud (For a lack of a better word!) of a mask. So, I began using it bi-weekly for about a month and, I have to say, I still don’t get it lol.

There is no denying that using this mask is a pleasurable experience, however, I still don’t see or feel any groundbreaking results after regular usage. Then again, what’s my one negative review among a sea of five star ones?! I still stand by my lackluster opinions but learned from reading user reviews that this mask proves to be highly effective for acne prone skin. My skin type has always been normal so it makes sense that I might not have seen such obvious improvements but it still would have been nice!

Acne prone skin or not, I still wouldn’t recommend paying the full twenty-eight dollar price tag for this mask. But, it is worth a try if you find it at a discount store like TJMaxx. I’m happy that I continued to try this face mask despite little to no results and plan on finishing my jar of it. But I think I will stick to my Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow mask from The Body Shop from now on.

Which products have you been unimpressed with recently? What is your favorite product from The Body Shop? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Buyer Beware!

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Buyer Beware!

Hi! Whether it’s a good or bad review, I like to be completely honest about my opinions or experiences with my readers. You might remember a previous post of mine gabbing about Wildly Untamed Boutique and how pleased I was with their customer service as I ordered heels from there for my wedding. While I still stand by that, I have to retract a statement I made saying that I would order from there again because that has been proven false since my last post.

Unfortunately, the heels I ordered were too big so I contacted Wildly Untamed Boutique’s customer service and asked to exchange them for a smaller pair. Knowing that it takes about three or so days to hear back from them, I ordered the size down so that the heels would arrive in ample time for my wedding. Customer service acknowledged that and I waited patiently for an update after the distributor was contacted.

I was instructed to ship the too large pair back and a shipping label to China was sent to me. I live in Ohio in the USA and my naive self thought “it can’t cost¬†that much to ship back”. So, you could imagine my surprise when an employee from the UPS Store told me that it would cost several hundred dollars to ship the one hundred fifteen dollar pair of shoes back. Either way in this scenario, I would be losing money.

As soon as I returned home, I emailed customer service again and asked if there was any other location that I could ship to because of exorbitant shipping fees. I also recalled that the shoes arrived with a printed shipping address in the USA, not in China (which I have saved). I was told that they had no other locations in the email back, so now I am essentially out two hundred thirty dollars.

Two hundred thirty? Yes. Because not only did I not have the option to return the too big pair of shoes, they did not have my size in the color that I wanted. I ordered a lesser loved color because I needed something that fit. However, that didn’t stop me from searching for the heels in the color that I wanted elsewhere online a few days later. And guess what? I found them on the actual brand’s website for FORTY BUCKS. That’s a marked up price on Wildly Untamed Boutique of seventy-five dollars!!!!!!

If this review doesn’t turn you off completely from shopping with Wildly Untamed Boutique, then I would recommend using caution when purchasing with them. If your order needs returned, chances are, the shipping fees will be more expensive than what you originally spent. They also, obviously, mark up their selection A LOT so you could almost certainly find what you want for cheaper elsewhere. Very disappointing.

Have you ever had a similar situation with online shopping? What did you do to remedy it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Feeling Blah

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Feeling Blah

Hello! Man, I don’t know about you guys but it has been a week for Lil Red. My lil niece was under the weather which resulted in me getting sick and to make matters worse, it was that time of the month on top of it! It has been a very stressful time in my life recently and I think that made whatever little bug I got from my niece even more debilitating because I was in a bad way. Due to all of the COVID safety precautions, I have not been sick in a really long time so this bout with the flu completely knocked me off my feet.

Being sick is always a bummer and, unfortunately, Johnny and I experienced another bummer to add to the overall blah feeling. We had viewed and applied for a home to rent and it was absolutely perfect. It was an ideal size, wonderful location, and a very cute little neighborhood. I felt so good about the impression that we made and was pretty confident that we would get approved to move in. I checked Trulia religiously after we applied and was crushed when I saw that it had been taken off of the market without us being contacted.

At the end of the day, not getting the house wasn’t a huge deal but it was definitely disappointing. It was just so nice and Johnny and I both loved it. Because of that and feeling confident about the possibility of moving in, I think I got a bit ahead of myself so seeing the house being taken off of the market felt like an even bigger blow. It also made me realize that finding a house to rent might be a lot harder than I had originally bargained for which sucks because I would really like to move out of the apartment!

Needless to say, it has been a blah time in Lil Red’s world but I think things will start turning around soon. A vent sesh on the ol’ blog always makes me feel better so thanks for listening to me complain, lol. Let the Trulia and Zillow searches commence…. again!

Do you have any tips for finding a house to rent? What makes you feel better when you’re feeling blah? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

My Thoughts On The Elisa Lam Documentary

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My Thoughts On The Elisa Lam Documentary

Hey! So yesterday, we discussed various forms of my lock down entertainment but I left out one major talking point in the TV section. I had just watched the Netflix documentary, Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel and it was all news to me. Despite the Elisa Lam story apparently being huge in 2013, I had no idea about any of it – the haunting viral video, the dark past of the Cecil Hotel (American Horror Story even based Hotel off of The Cecil!), and all of the conspiracy theories of what could have happened to Elisa even though her death was ruled an accident.

Because I had no past recollection of the Elisa Lam story, I devoured the four part under four hour long documentary in one evening. It took me a while to digest all of the information because the “elevator” video was playing on a loop in my head. However, after thinking about it for a few days, there is still something about the Elisa Lam story that just doesn’t sit well with me. At the end of the day, we have no firm idea of what her last few days were like which makes the case feel severely lacking in closure. I don’t believe in any of the far fetched conspiracies about the case but I have a feeling that the management of the Cecil Hotel knew more than they were letting on. The hotel manager didn’t seem particularly trustworthy to me and she had an extremely defensive standpoint throughout the documentary.

Speaking of conspiracies, I thought that this documentary focused way too much on them. I was completely shocked to learn at the very end of The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel of Elisa Lam’s struggle with her mental health as well as her family’s confirmation of it. Instead of starting a conversation about mental health, the documentary almost encouraged the Internet Sleuth sensation while only briefly glazing over a life that these “detectives” ruined – Pablo Vergara’s. Elisa Lam’s story just felt like it got added in after the fact.

This is the third documentary that I have watched recently on Netflix and I can’t say that I have been very impressed with any of them. Each documentary has just had so much extra crap muddled in that I feel like it doesn’t do the actual story any justice. While the first two episodes of Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel were really gripping and informative the remaining two indulged heavily in conspiracy theories which was a missed opportunity for more meaningful conversation.

What are your thoughts on the Elisa Lam story? What was the last documentary you watched? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Face Mask Festivities: Formula 10.0.6 Turn Up The Heat Edition

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Face Mask Festivities: Formula 10.0.6 Turn Up The Heat Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a new edition of Face Mask Festivities. Today, we are going to be talking about one of the masks that I received in my Holiday Haul by Formula 10.0.6 and, I have to say, I am very glad that this is a mask that I didn’t buy on my own because it was a massive dud. But, hey, they can’t all be winners and it’s still always nice to try something new. Take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

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My first qualm with the Turn Up The Heat face mask was the pump bottle that it came in. If you held it with the pump on top, nothing came out and if you held it with the pump on the bottom, it was still really difficult to get anything out. Also, the amount of face mask that pumped out was minuscule so it took some time to get enough to cover my face and, even then, it was a thin coating at best. A squeeze bottle would have worked so much better!

Despite the issues with simply getting the product out of the bottle, I was still excited to try it because I love a good self-warming mask. But, unfortunately, the mask never heated up on my face. Rather, it got warm in my hands and by the time I applied it to my face, the effect was already gone and that was definitely a disappointment since the self-warming was the whole point of the mask.

Up until I finished washing the mask off, I was still holding on to a slight benefit of the doubt but that quickly dissipated once I realized how tight my skin was afterwards. It felt so dehydrated and I couldn’t get my moisturizer on fast enough. I also noticed no positive changes in my complexion, either. WHOMP WHOMP.

I would not recommend this mask at all as it was lackluster on all fronts. The highly inconvenient packaging was one thing but the Turn Up The Heat mask did not work as described and did nothing for my skin. Don’t bother with this one!

Is there a self-warming mask that you recommend? Have you used any products that were duds lately? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Sleeping Nymph By Ilaria Tuti Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Sleeping Nymph By Ilaria Tuti Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! Without giving any spoilers away, we are going to be discussing the sequel to Flowers Over The Inferno by Ilaria Tuti called The Sleeping Nymph. Ever since finishing Flowers Over The Inferno in August, I was eagerly awaiting to get my hands on the sequel to see what happens next to Italian police superintendent, Teresa Battaglia, and her team. Despite The Sleeping Nymph not being as good as its predecessor, I still enjoyed it well enough so let’s get to the review:

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In Flowers Over The Inferno, we learned that aging Teresa Battaglia has began suffering from the early stages of Alzheimer’s and the disease has done nothing but progress. Teresa wears a bracelet reminding her of her name, religiously writes notes in her diary so she doesn’t forget, and has a hard time recognizing people as well as coming up with the names of common objects. Somehow, she still manages to get up every day to help crack cases that are twisted, dark, and to some “unsolvable”. And, in the case of The Sleeping Nymph, Teresa is going to need all of her wits about her more so than ever before.

Our story begins with the discovery of a “missing” portrait in an art gallery painted by Alessio Andrian seventy years ago. The painting it called The Sleeping Nymph and it showcases the great beauty of a young woman – enchanting all who merely glimpse at it. Despite the portrait being so beautiful, it holds a dark secret because, upon testing the red paint that was used, we learn that it is actually blood. What’s more, the tests showed traces of cardiac tissue, meaning it came straight from the heart.

Since painting The Sleeping Nymph, Alessio Andrian never spoke a single word again. He is still alive but, clearly, will be of no help to the case so it is up to Teresa and her partner, Massimo Marini, to find out about the origins of the painting on their own. Through their diligent work, they wind up in the Resian Valley where The Sleeping Nymph originated. However, they get a lot more than they bargained for in the Valley when a human heart is found nailed to a tree, thus fast forwarding their case into the present.

Could the killer of the Nymph still be alive and has come back to tie up loose ends? Or is there foul play going on in the Valley? There is even an inkling that these murders might be tied to occult practices. Who murdered The Sleeping Nymph and who is killing now? Read the book to find out!

Now, I didn’t love The Sleeping Nymph but I also didn’t hate it, either. Despite the portrait painted in blood being an “oh my gosh” discovery, it also happened seventy years ago making the immediate sense of urgency you feel about the present day crimes in Flowers Over The Inferno nonexistent. The Sleeping Nymph kind of dragged on while the focus was in the past but promptly picked up about halfway through when they discovered the heart on the tree in modern time.

My other qualm with this book is just how wordy it is. Flowers Over The Inferno was like that too but I suppose I didn’t notice because it was one of my favorite books that I’ve read this year. Because The Sleeping Nymph didn’t immediately captivate me, the vivid and highly detailed descriptions came off as boring and I felt ready for the book to be done about fifty pages in. I have never not finished a book that I started, though, and the four hundred and forty page read felt more like a chore than something I really wanted to do.

The Teresa Battaglia novels are meant to be a trilogy and my only hope is that the third book will be better than the second. I genuinely have no idea how Teresa will be able to solve another case with the progression of her Alzheimer’s but I am very ready to find out!

Overall, I am going to rate The Sleeping Nymph with six out of ten stars. I think it paled in comparison to Flowers Over The Inferno but I still enjoyed portions of the story line as well as the grand reveal. I would still recommend reading the Teresa Battaglia novels and I can’t wait to see how the trilogy ends.

What is the last book that you read? What do you recommend for me to read next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Bath & Body Works Haul/Annoyances

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Bath & Body Works Haul/Annoyances

Helloooo! Ever since moving into my apartment, I have only used the foaming hand soaps from Bath & Body Works in my bathroom and kitchen. Both Johnny and I love them and we alternate between who buys more when we are running low. This time around, it was my turn to order the goods and I went with all of the Christmas scents for the six soaps for twenty-six dollars deal. Check it out:

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In the close to two years that I have been ordering from Bath & Body Works, I have never had a problem with their delivery services. However, this time around, one of the soaps was actually open and it was just a mess inside the box. All of my soaps are now super sticky and I can’t even get them open to take a whiff of the scents I’m unfamiliar with.

This is a minor inconvenience and, of course, accidents happen. My biggest gripe with Bath & Body Works is how they handle their coupons online. I get at least one to two B&BW coupon packets in the mail per month and this normally includes some type of free item. The real kicker? I can’t use any of them online in combination with the deals for my hand soap.

To receive my free item, I would have to make another order and pay for the six dollar shipping again despite originally having other items in my cart that do not qualify for any type of deal. The realest kicker? If I went into one of the stores, it would not be an issue and I could get my freebies without having to pay multiple shipping costs for multiple transactions.

As someone who works in the care profession, I have had to resort to doing all of my shopping other than groceries on the world wide web. I have not been “shopping shopping” since February and I’m sure a lot of people are in the same boat. Once again, it’s a minor inconvenience but you would think that online retailers would be a bit more considerate to the situation given a lot of people just aren’t comfortable shopping in store.

At the end of the day, boo hoo. I didn’t get a plethora of freebies within these past several months. It’s just more annoying than anything, considering I have been a loyal customer for years now. I have a lot of respect for all of the retailers that have made online shopping and using their promos more accessible during COVID times and B&BW’s strict coupon rules online just comes off as stingy.

ANYWHO, sorry for the rant but that has really been irking my nerves for a while! Lol, I love my freebies – sue me for it!

Which stores offer the best coupons/promotions? How do you get the best deals when shopping online? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lil Red’s Thanksgiving

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Lil Red’s Thanksgiving

Hello! For those of you who don’t know, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love sitting around the table with my family and enjoying the most delicious food that I have been waiting all year to eat, lol! Unfortunately, due to the nature of my job of working in several different homes throughout the course of this pandemic, Johnny and I deemed it unsafe for us to participate in the holiday with both of our families.

Making that decision was not easy and I honestly cried for at least three days about it. However, safety is and will always be my primary goal and anything I can do to protect my family, my clients, and myself is worth all of the hardships. As I’ve mentioned before, COVID-19 has been on a terrifying rise in Ohio and it has made doing anything other than work and grocery shopping damn near impossible for those who are taking the virus seriously.

On Thanksgiving, Johnny and I were able to visit with my family outside and my parents were nice enough to drop off our Thanksgiving meal to our apartment. It was not traditional in any sense of the word but we all felt good with that decision no matter how hard it was.

As someone who has worked in the health care field throughout this entire pandemic, it is safe to say that I am totally burned out. However, a bright ray of sunshine is on the horizon for me come Christmas. I have not taken any time off to recharge for the past nine months and I plan on taking two weeks off prior to Christmas so I can celebrate safely with my family.

It will feel so good to have that time to relax, breathe a little bit easier, and be able to watch my family open all of the gifts that I picked out special for them. Thanksgiving was a bust but I am going to make this Christmas the best one yet and I can’t wait!

How did you celebrate Thanksgiving this year? What is your favorite holiday? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

PS: Thank those of us in the health care profession not just with your words but by wearing a mask and social distancing to help curb the spread of COVID-19. We are tired. We are exhausted. And we need your help!