Barkbox – June 2014

Barkbox is a monthly subscription for your dog. Each month, you get a nice selection of treats and a toy (or two) for your dog. The treats are all US or Canadian ingredients and products. Boxes are customized based on dog weight, and if your dog is a destroyer of toys like mine, you can just email and request the aggressive chewer option.

I’d suggest signing up with someone’s referral in order to score 10% off your sub (plus you hook their pup up with an extra box or two!)–unless there is a sale going on! If you sign up now with the code RUCKUS, you’ll get 15% off your sub (good until June 16 at 10 am est, so hurry!)

Barkbox has an amazing discount if ordering multi month options, so with no discount, it can cost anywhere from $18/month to $29/month! I highly recommend paying for as much up front as you can, as it really increases the value of this box.

For reference, I get the Big & Bold box (50+ pounds) with the heavy chewer option.

20140614_123258I barely got this open, and had to do outside with a nutcase (Riley) rushing me along. And as you can see, I could barely get a pictures of the goods laid out without a nose coming to check things out. Riley is the expert in this area, so he helped with my unboxing and review.



The offerings this month included:

  • R2P Monkey Silly Bums $10 – I didn’t even get the tag off (Riley took care of that), and he went nuts over this one. He normally rips stuffy toys to shreds, but this one has survived thus far. There’s a squeaker (YES!) and a crinkly type stuffing. It’s the most ridiculous toy ever, but maybe this headless thing is working for Riley–they normally get ripped off.
  • Benebone Nylon Chew $12 – This thing had me a bit worried at first, since it felt like this one Nylabone we had gotten in the past that Riley annihilated in one sitting. Surprisingly, it’s holding up well and he likes it. Chew bones are always a welcome addition.
  • Green Bark Gummies Hip & Joint Treats $10 – Even though Riley is young, he runs like crazy, so I do like getting treats that are good for his hips and joints. These have the goods with NutriaCHIA, glucosamine, and Chondroitin (we JUST ran out of his other treats for this!). I wasn’t worried, but these also passed the taste test.
  • Benny Bully’s Beef Liver & Banana Treats $8 – These smelled awful to me, but it’s not me that they needed to impress (taste test passed). Healthy treats with a mix I wouldn’t be excited about, but Riley was more than willing to inhale.

This was my (Riley’s) first Barkbox, and I’m extremely happy I went with this box. Looking at past boxes, I knew I’d get some good stuff, and this definitely confirmed that this box amazing! Can’t wait for next month! What did your dog think of this month’s Barkbox?


Sample Society Mystery Boxes

Recently, Sample Society sold a ton of mystery boxes. I managed to snag one of each of the $10 sample boxes (A-E). With a code, I got free shipping and the total came to $35. I based the prices I came up with on Amazon, rather than, especially since the contents were from old sample boxes. For the most part, the prices were often comparable.  Each box came with a $15 off coupon, but all were long expired, so that was useless.

Here are the contents of each:

Box A – February 2014 ($33.64)


Alterna Bamboo Volume Plumping Strand Expand $3.70
Alterna Bamboo Volume 48-Hour Sustainable Volume Spray $3.83
AHAVA Mineral Botanic Velvet Body Lotion – Tropical Pineapple & White Peach $5.78
MURAD Rapid Collagen Infusion $8.33
Phyto Keratine Ultra Repairing Mask 1.7oz travel $12.00

Box B – January 2014 ($70.75)


StriVectin SD Eye Concentrate $14.75
butter London Horse Power Nail Fertilizer $19.00
Tocca Margaux Eau de Parfum $2.00
Orlane Paris Extreme Line Reducing Lip Care $15.00
Stila Cosmetics Color Balm Lipstick, Vivienne $20.00

The card insert listed a different StriVectin product than the one I actually received, which was a bit of a bummer since this was a duplicate item.

Box C – February 2014 ($49.14)


Minus 417 Dead Sea Cosmetics Hand Moisturizer, Ocean Fragrance $6.00
butter LONDON Nail Lacquer – British Racing Green $15.00
Diptyque L’Eau Du Trente Quatre $3.60
IPKN Moist & Firm Beauty Balm Cream #02 (Light) $5.79
Radical Skincare Age-Defying Exfoliating Pads $18.75

I made a guess on the IPKN cream, since there was not a size noted on it.

Box D – January 2014 ($54.01)


StriVectin SD Eye Concentrate $14.75
butter London Horse Power Nail Fertilizer $19.00
Nicole Richie Eau de Parfum $0.23
Malin & Goetz Vitamin E Face Moisturizer $11.25
StriVectin Instant Retexturizing Scrub $8.79

I found the Nicole Richie perfume much cheaper than listed on the card, and wasn’t impressed at all.. Duplicate butter London product and StriVectin.

Box E – November 2013 ($34.96)


Jane Iredale Lip Drink Lip Balm $6.00
Borghese Splendore Brightening Makup $15.48
Annick Goural Eau d’Hadrien Eau de Toilette $1.04
Murad Anti-Aging Acne Pore & Line Minimizing Hydrator $5.73
Illume Balsam & Cedar Metallic Tin Candle $6.71

I actually based the candle price on the burn time rather than amount of candle. Otherwise, it’s valued a bit lower–but to me, how long a candle actually lasts is where it’s at.

All in all, I would have loved a teeny bit more makeup, and a lot less perfume! But I did get a lot of stuff I’m definitely willing to try, though some scream winter time, so I’ll be packing them away until then.

Was definitely a TON of fun coming home to this box, though!

Ipsy – June 2014





Ipsy is a monthly subscription of 4-5 beauty products (samples to full size), and a makeup bag!

Cost – $10 a month (with free shipping)

Even if you are hesitant, it’s worth signing up now to get yourself on the wait list (removed instantly if you get a signup through your referral). Though, they often have deals that allow you to skip the wait, so keep an eye out!

This month’s theme is Pretty in Paradise, which featured a bag with a beautiful Rebecca Minkoff design.


My goods this month included –

  • Realtree for Her: Starting with this because of my dislike of perfume samples! This one I’m not a fan of on me. It’s like a floral musky smell that I’m not too impressed with, and it’s doing nothing for me. I double checked that I didn’t have perfume checked on my profile, so hoping this is just a fluke!
  • Marc Anthony Dream Waves Beach Spray – I’m already interested in this one. I’m almost always just straighten my hair and call it a day, but I think this will be nice to add a bit to that, and I’ve been wanting to experiment more with my hair. This seems like a simple, not too terribly drastic way to start.
  • Be a Bombshell – Lash Out Mascara – By the talk, I thought this stuff was going to have this tear inducing, noxious chemical odor. I mean, it has a weird-ish smell, but it’s not nearly as bad as people are making it out to be. As a mascara, I love it. Goes on smooth and gives me the look I like–Glad I got this because my old one is about ready to be retired.
  • OFRA Universal Eyebrow Pencil – I can’t say I’ve done much with eyebrows outside of the normal tweezing and cleanup. This pencil really made them pop and smooth them out. The color wasn’t too much darker than my normal color, so it’s perfect for me–add a bit of drama without looking like too much!
  • NYX Butter Gloss – This here has been what the hype has been about since the teasers came out. There were two colors I’d consider, obviously one favorite, and one I thought I’d never be able to pull off (I like a more natural looking color!)–And Ipsy heard my makeup prayers, and I got Creme Brulee! I’m happy, and really like this product.

This was my first month as an Ipsy Glam Bag subscriber, and I’m extremely happy with what I got! I’ll use 4 out of 5 items, which isn’t bad for $10! What did you think of the June 2014 Ipsy Glam Bag?

What I got Wednesday – June 11, 2014

I’ve made it another week, and while things started slow, I definitely think this turned out to be a pretty fun week of mail.



  • Folgers Gourmet Blends sampler pack – I’ll never say no to some free K-Cups to try, especially as generous a sample as four! Most only ever come with two. I’ve had a couple of the Folgers gourmet blends, and was definitely impressed. There’s a couple here I haven’t tried, and the $1 off coupons will definitely be put to good use!
  • P&G sample pack – I’ll have to add this one to sites I love with a reminder. Once per quarter, you can request samples from Proctor and Gamble. This go around I got Herbal Essences Body Wash – Body Burst, and Olay Sensitive unscented body wash. They also send a pretty decent book of coupons, though this one wasn’t as full as ones I’ve gotten in the past.
  • Cheerios – A single serve. Can’t go wrong there!
  • Singing Dog Vanilla Organic Lip Balm – This was my first blog giveaway win. I haven’t used them much yet, except to try. Michael didn’t get my “hint” that basically said please take the mail in to make sure my stuff doesn’t melt while I was at work… All was well, fortunately. The flavors are all varieties of vanilla-Vanilla (which I did try and was good!), Vanilla Cherry, and Vanilla Coconut. Check them out for all your vanilla needs!
  • I did order a planner, which came. I have one for work, but I needed a new personal one. I like a good paper one–call me old fashioned. Fortunately this one starts mid year, so I didn’t feel like I was wasting half a year.
  • June 2014 Birchbox and a Mystery Sampler Pack – woo!

Next week is gonna be a busy one! I’m expecting Barkbox, Ipsy, and Bonjour Jolie (if they send, getting worried here…).

Plus, since I’m just getting on the sample and beauty box bandwagon, I wanted to boost my stockpile a bit. So…

  • I snagged up one of each of the 5 $10 Sample Society Mystery Boxes. Kicking myself for hesitating on the $15 boxes, but using the code BBTWITTER, plus the spend $50 get free shipping, my total came to $35. Should be here Friday!
  • A Total Beauty Ultimate Sampler which gets me $80 in full size and deluxe samples (see link!). Use the coupon code 15SAVE, and it’s only $14.45! Should be here by Wednesday.
  • And while this won’t be coming until next month, you can score a free Beauty Box 5 box, or a 3 month sub for $6 per month using the code FREE614. I opted for a 3 month sub!

How’d you do this week?


Coppertone ClearlySheer Sunscreen Review Take 2

So in our last episode, I discussed my usage of Coppertone ClearlySheer Sunscreen on my body, and my apprehension about using it on my face. So, strictly in the name of   science, I spent the last two weekends using it right there (and praying to the pore gods that my face would not explode!)

Weekend 1, all I used was Coppertone. I spent a good chunk of it outside, relaxing in the sun, mostly just decompressing from a busy week. But as I’d hoped, no breakouts, no greasy look OR feel, and no burns. It passes the first test! And best yet, this isn’t even the “faces” formula, which has a higher SPF (50 vs 30), so I’m definitely intrigued about that!

The following weekend, however, is where the real science began! I decided to take a “fancier” facial sunscreen that runs roughly $2.67 per ounce (Note: This amount is being generous, since I only found a bulk size. The smaller size, roughly half the Coppertone amount, is over $7 per ounce, so I think a fair comparison would be to say if I COULD buy a similar sized product, it would still be upwards of $4-5 per ounce!). Coppertone cost roughly $2.09 per ounce, $2.19 if I had the “faces” formula.

How else to test but to draw an invisible line down my face…

Coppertone 1Coppertone2coppertone 3

So in picture 1, I have Coppertone on the left, and the other product on the right. You’ll notice right off the bat that Coppertone had a little more substance to it. Both blended in very well with the same level of effort.

Picture 2 – I had a full day of gardening planned, but remember, this is for science! And I do love science! So I went ahead and did up my face in full makeup–gotta look good for them weeds! Again, no issue with application of makeup.

Picture 3 – After a long, gross day of working outside, I almost just washed off to get the sweat off, but I remembered my experiment and snapped a final shot. Sunny, hot day, and I spent all of it outdoors, and I’d say both products were comparable. No burns, no line down the middle of my face (phew!), no greasy feel (except maybe a little sweaty, but I was doin’ work!).

As far as I could tell, both products worked just as well as the other–so what would you rather pay? I think I’ll stick with Coppertone ClearlySheer!

Coppertone Clearly Sheer

*I received this product for free from BzzAgent for my open and honest review.  All views expressed here are my own.*

Birchbox – June 2014

BirchBox is a monthly beauty subscription that sends you beauty and lifestyle items that may be sample size, deluxe sample size, or even full size!

Cost – $10 per month, $110 for 12 months (one day left to get a year sub for $99 using the coupon code BBSUBYEAR! Ends June 9)

With last month’s box being my first, I received both May and June around the same time. While excited, now I know I’ll have the real month long wait between boxes-kind of depressing considering how much fun that was!


Sorry about the fuzzy pic, didn’t realize my lens managed to get a bit dirty.

This month’s these is “Away We Go” and the samples provided are designed to have you travel ready (which somehow includes stay-cations).  They also included a travel quiz, which you can take to enter for a chance to win your own getaway. There were only a few questions, and I managed to pick a pretty well rounded bit, only barely picking New York, New York in the end.


So what’s in the box?

  • Number 4 Hair hydrating shampoo and a bonus conditioner – This stuff smelled amazing! And I loved the way my hair felt, though there was almost a bit of a filmy feeling afterwards–Like I couldn’t quite rinse the conditioner fully.
  • COOLA Tinted Matte SPF 30 for Face – I haven’t had a chance to try this one yet, but I’m always interested in a good face sunscreen. The tint is a nice bonus if it ends up looking good.
  • Gilchrest & Soames London Collection Body Lotion – Was not a fan. It smelled alright, and I’ll definitely use the rest, but it was super runny for a body lotion. I like something with a bit more substance to it.
  • Vasanti Cosmetics BrightenUp! Enzymatic Face Renovator – This is probably my favorite item in this month’s box. I love a good face scrub, and this stuff felt awesome. It had superfine minerals that felt really amazing, and I loved the way my face felt afterwards.
  • Joie Folle de Joie Eau de Parfum – Perfumes are never my favorite in a box. I think it’s mainly because I hardly wear them during the week (I’ve always felt it’s poor etiquette to wear perfume in an office). This one was OK. It’s a bit sweet and flowery, and light, so for me it would be nice during the day.

So that’s the goods in my box. I’d love to have gotten some makeup to try, but I’m still happy with everything I got to try! The only major disappointment is that I’ve gotten two perfumes in a row, despite my profile. We’ll see what next month brings, or Ipsy’s box, then I’ll try fiddling with my profile.

My breakdown: I paid $1.43 for this box (Note: I’m not yet sure if  BB will let me review both the shampoo AND conditioner, but I’m assuming yes.)

What did you think of the June 2014 Birchbox?





Birchbox Mystery Sampler #1

Right now, you can add a mystery sample pack to any Birchbox order of $35 or more (normally $10 if you just want to buy!). This pack contains one deluxe sample and one standard sample.

Here’s what I got in my first: 20140606_180440

  • OPI Sheer Tints Color-Tinted Top Coat – This came at a perfect time. I had just ordered an OPI top coat through Amazon, and my Prime shipping got goofed. I should have received it the same day I got this! I haven’t noticed the tint effect, but I kind of went with a color where I wouldn’t expect an orangey sheen to show up too well.
  • John Vass L’eau de Opale – Birchbox really wants me to like perfume.. I won’t pretend to talk perfume outside of what I know I like or don’t like. This one is a miss for me and on me, it smells like heavily perfumed soap. Just not for me.

This was definitely a nice bonus, and the top coat just made my day, so I consider this a win. Remember to add this if you sign up for a year subscription!