Posts filed under ‘Reviews’

Dial Acne Control Face and Body Wash Review

When it comes to my skin, I can be somewhat picky as far as what products I put on it. However, I’m also always willing to try out new brands and products, which is why I was excited for the opportunity to try out Dial’s Acne Control face and body wash.

At the moment I have the definition of combination skin. Halfway through the day I am plagued with oily, shiny skin, but I also have prominent dry patches on my forehead and down the bridge of my nose. I have always struggled with finding a skin care solution that takes care of both the dryness and the oil, as most products are geared toward one condition and one condition only. This is no good, as products for oily skin tend to dry out my already dry areas, and products for dry skin over saturate my already oily areas. I was pleased to learn that Dial’s products were oil-free. I’ve found that products containing oil do nothing for my skin but clog my pores. Even though I can be somewhat dry, oil-based cleansers still clog my pores and cause me to breakout. I was met with mixed thoughts over the fact that the products contained salicylic acid. As a teenager, when my skin was predominately oily and more prone to acne breakouts, I used a lot of salicylic acid products to clear up my skin. It always worked for me because it dried out my problem areas, but I was worried that it would make my dry spots extra dry and scaly.

I was pleased to find that this cleanser was gentle enough to not further dry out my skin, yet effective enough to help clear up the little breakouts I get here and there. One of the first things I noticed was the fragrance. It was a clean, light, pleasant smell. This was definitely a plus for the body wash, but made me concerned about the face wash. My face is more on the sensitive side, and in the past I’ve become irritated by heavily-perfumed face washes. Luckily this was not the case with Dial Acne Control face wash.

As far as the acne control aspect, even though I would classify it as a gentle cleanser, it definitely helped clear up the small breakouts I regularly get within a couple of days. I can’t say with confidence that it did too much to prevent pimples and zits from occurring, but it certainly nipped them in the butt after they started to appear.

When I used acne treatments in the past, they were solely for acne-prone periods. I would use them during the onset of breakouts and during, until they were cleared up. Once I felt my skin was clear I would switch back to my regular skin regimen. This was because of how drying those products were. Dial Acne Control, however, I wouldn’t think twice about using twice a day. I can’t stress enough how gentle this cleanser was, and in a good way. And the scent is a major plus, as most face washes I use are unscented due to the fact that the fragrances used tend to irritate my skin.

As far as repurchasing this product, I don’t know that I’ll necessarily grab this one each time I’m in need for a new face wash, but it will definitely be in the circle of products I rotate. It definitely reacts well on my skin and for the price there’s no denying it’s a great deal. As far as the body wash, I really enjoyed using it, but I don’t have a lot of issues with body acne, and therefore I don’t personally see the need for an acne control body wash.

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

November 9, 2014 at 12:32 pm Leave a comment

Tone Petal Soft Body Wash Review

I was very pleased with Tone Petal Soft body wash for several reasons. First of all, I love how moisturizing it is. Many different brands, both high end and drugstore, claim to have moisturizing properties but that is not always the case. Harsh cleansers, chemicals, and sulfates that are often added to soaps and shower gels to get our skin “extra clean” end up doing more harm than good. These ingredients strip the skin of the natural, healthy oils thus causing dry, scaly skin and overpowering the hydrating ingredients. This wasn’t the case for me with Tone. Although I’ve been applying extra lotion and moisturizers to make up for the drying effects this cold, long winter has had on my skin, I don’t want my body wash to strip all of that away. The Tone Petal Soft body wash was gentle and moisturizing enough to maintain the hydration of my skin while still leaving it squeaky clean. The fact that it contains Vitamin E is just an added bonus!

Another perk for me was the floral scent. I’m usually not one to choose flowers over fruity scents such as berry or citrus, however, the Pink Peony and Rose Oil created the perfect balance of clean, fresh, and sweet. It wasn’t overpowering at all, but strong enough that it still lingered a bit after I had dried off and gotten dressed. The scent, to me, was kind of reminiscent of the original Herbal Essence shampoo line and I absolutely loved it when I was younger. Although floral scents tend to appeal to females more than males, my boyfriend used this body wash several times and had no problem with the smell. He even commented that it made him feel cleaner than the cologne-scented body wash he normally uses.

The price of Tone products is right on point, too! I’m usually willing to spend a little more money on products that keep my skin looking and feeling clean, fresh, and moisturized but it is relieving to know that I don’t have to if I purchase Tone body wash. Like I stated before, I’ve used high and low end brands, and even some expensive, higher end washes I’ve tried didn’t compare to the hydration that Tone gave me. I will definitely continue to purchase this product, and I’m looking forward to trying out their other scents and products!

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

April 6, 2014 at 1:38 pm Leave a comment

TruMoo Vanilla Milk Review

When I got the e-mail with the invitation to try the new Halloween edition of TruMoo, I was genuinely excited. Not only for me, but for my 9 year old son, too. He loves flavored milk, and vanilla has always been his favorite by far. Don’t get me wrong, he loves chocolate milk, but when vanilla is an option he always goes for that. When I saw that TruMoo had a limited edition orange-colored vanilla milk for Halloween, I knew immediately that this was going to be a huge hit in our household, and I was right.

The problem with my son loving flavored milks is they tend to be on the not-so-healthy side. Milk is very good for you, yes, but when there are sugars, syrups, and other variants added into what’s usually the fattiest of whole milks, it becomes more of a milkshake than just milk, which isn’t the healthiest of options by far. TruMoo, on the other hand, gets that children (and adults!) love chocolate and other flavors of milk and still manage to maintain the good nutrition that milk is known for. With less sugar, fat, and essentially no additives (such as high fructose corn syrup and artificial ingredients) TruMoo is the obvious choice when shopping for flavored milk.

We set out to the grocery store and easily found the Halloween Orange edition of vanilla TruMoo in the half gallon size. Although we’ve tried their chocolate options before, we picked up a half gallon of that, as well, just for good measure. 🙂 The vanilla flavor was absolutely delicious, and best of all it was mostly guilt-free! It wasn’t overly sweet or thick, making it refreshing but still sweet and flavored enough that it felt like a treat. Needless to say, the half gallon that was purchased on a Monday was gone by Tuesday evening, with the chocolate milk not lasting long after. I certainly have been utilizing the generous coupons that came in my Bzz Kit, as my family just cannot get enough. Not to mention the festive color made it that much more fun to drink!

Another bonus about TruMoo having the vanilla flavor was the big size it comes in. This may sound weird, and it may be much different in other places, but I’ve rarely seen vanilla milk in half gallon or gallon containers- only regular, and chocolate. Because vanilla is my son’s favorite, I end up having to buy several 16-20 oz. bottles which really add up financially. I’m glad I can not only save money on my son’s favorite drink, but I am also giving him a healthier option.

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

October 13, 2013 at 5:10 pm Leave a comment

Dr. Scholl’s For Her High Heel Insoles Review

As someone who is on their feet a lot at work, I am always looking into different brands, styles, and types of shoe insoles. I’m still expected to maintain a “business casual” fashion sense at work, which leaves me with aching feet every night due to walking and standing in heels for a full work day. Some that I’ve tried in the past were excellent, while most that I’ve tried fell short of my expectations. Needless to say, I was excited when I got the invite to try out Dr. Scholl’s For Her High Heel Insoles, and how they would improve the heels that I wear to work nearly everyday!

Upon first glance of the product, I really liked the design and materials used to make the insoles. First of all, they are clear. The shoes I was going to be trying them out in are open, wedge sandals, so the transparent color made them nearly invisible while wearing them. Second, I really like the almost gel-like feel of them. They were squishy, yet seemed firm enough to provide adequate foot support.

There were a few concerns that I had, as well. The bulk of the cushioning seemed to be only around the arch area of the foot, which is good for support, however, most of my discomfort typically seems to be in the ball of my foot. Also, they didn’t appear to be very adhesive. I actually had mixed feelings about this. A lot of the different brands that I’ve tried were so sticky that you had to pretty much position them exactly the way you wanted upon placing them in your shoe, because once it stuck, it stuck. These, on the other hand, I was able to maneuver a bit until I got them just right, and afterwards they still stayed in place. After wearing them for several days, they did begin to shift, but once my foot was on top of them they didn’t budge much.

Comfort-wise I was really happy with these insoles. I wore them to work two weeks in a row, about 4-5 days each week, and my feet were probably only half as soar as usual. They did still hurt a bit at the end of each day, but that’s pretty much to be expected no matter what kind of shoes or insoles you are wearing! The pain was definitely lessened, though. They were a bit hard to get used to at first. It kind of felt like I had something in my shoe poking into my arch, but after the first few hours I was good.

Overall I am very pleased with this product. I will definitely be keeping these in my shoes, and purchasing more (perhaps in other Dr. Scholl’s varieties) for my other pairs of shoes as well!

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

July 4, 2013 at 1:45 pm Leave a comment

got2b POWDER’ful Volumizing Styling Powder Review

I’ve been using the Big Sexy Hair Powder Play volumizing powder for a few years now. When I first discovered it, I was intrigued by it’s unique powder form initially, and later grew to love it due to it’s benefits for my hair type. The bad thing? It’s pricey, for a seemingly small amount of product. When I got the opportunity to try a new brand, especially one that retails for about half as much, I jumped at the chance! I’ve tried a few different styling products from got2b in the past, and they were always pretty decent. Beauty school taught me to try and stay away from “over-the-counter” brands of hair care products, however, sometimes that’s just not realistic financially. Especially the way I tend to go through them! I also noticed that got2b is made by Schwarzkopf, which also manufactures professional brands, so that puts me more at ease.

I have very straight, fine, thin hair. It tends to get greasy and fall limp rather quickly, and doesn’t hold volume for very long. Styling powders are perfect for someone with my hair type. They provide volume and hold without making my hair sticky, crunchy, or extra-greasy, and are lightweight enough that it doesn’t weigh my hair down more. I’ve been growing my hair out for a few years now, so my need for this product isn’t as high as it was when I had a short, layered bob cut, but I still use it pretty often just on my root area for a little extra lift. Not only does this product provide volume, but it can help add texture to layered and short hair styles. I usually will put about a quarter sized amount of powder in my hands and rub them together, then massage through my scalp right at the roots. Then I sprinkle a little bit right onto my roots in the center of my crown area and rub it in while lifting the hair up, because this is where I want the most volume and typically need the most help achieving volume. It’s a super quick and easy hair fix since it doesn’t really require any extra styling!

I still have some of my Powder Play, so I was able to compare it with the got2b POWDER’ful side by side. Honestly, there isn’t much of a difference! They felt the same, melted the same way when rubbed in my hands, and most importantly they gave me the same style results! If anything, the Big Sexy Hair Powder Play may be a bit more concentrated, and therefore heavy, but for someone with my hair type that isn’t necessarily a good thing. When you have thin, fine hair, the lighter the styling product the better! I’m definitely going to continue purchasing this product, and my hair and wallet couldn’t be happier!

To maximize the results of this product I recommend drying your hair with a round brush, lifting at the roots, prior to application (or at the very least, drying your hair with your head upside down) and finishing with a mist of lightweight hair spray for extra hold. If it’s really big hair you’re after, you can apply the product and then tease your hair for huge volume that will hold all day!

Check out my results, and keep in mind my hair naturally is extremely thin and therefore very limp and flat!

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

May 2, 2013 at 10:22 am 1 comment

Children’s Claritin 24-Hour Grape Chewable Tablets Review

My son (9 years old) has dealt with allergies for years. I wouldn’t say that they’re seasonal, or an everyday thing, but he does suffer from consistent periods of time where his eyes and nose are out of control. His eyes water, become puffy and swollen looking, and itchy, while his nose becomes stuffy, runny, and congested. These are all pretty typical symptoms, but for a 9 year old, they can be overwhelming. We’ve tried several brands of children’s allergy medications over the years. The most recent brand we’ve used was Target’s Up & Up generic brand.

While his usual medication has been helping him in the mornings and through most of his day, it always seems to wear off by the time he gets home from school. Even the prescription strength allergy drops his pediatrician prescribed him not too long ago didn’t seem to hold him over for very long. After battling allergies for this long, he was excited to hear that a new medicine would be coming for him to try. He initially wasn’t too thrilled about the fact the they were flavored, chewable tablets (he’s not a fan of the taste of medicine, typically) he was willing to try anything that potentially could make him feel better.

The first day we tried the Claritin, he took it the same time he usually takes his allergy medication in the morning. As soon as he walked in the door later that day, he literally ran up the stairs to tell me, and in a way show me, how great he was still feeling! He immediately told me that I had to keep buying them. He was rubbing his eyes less, he could comfortably breathe through his nose all day, and to be honest he said that he didn’t even mind the taste that much. I know that Claritin is a fairly popular and decent brand, but I was surprised that it seemed to make that much of a difference on him. Even medications that promise 12-hour relief tend to fall short, let alone a 24 hour one, but Children’s Claritin definitely did what it claimed to do.

I will definitely be purchasing this brand again, and taking advantage of the coupons I received. Price was definitely a factor when choosing medications before, but my son’s health and overall well-being is worth paying a little extra for!

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

April 29, 2013 at 6:32 pm Leave a comment

3-Day “Military” Diet Review

I’ve mentioned on here several times about my desire to lose weight. It was last May/June, I believe, that I decided I was going to take getting healthy seriously. I managed to lose 10 lbs by the end of last summer, which I was proud of, but at some point I just totally let it go. While I luckily did not gain the 10 lbs back at any point, my eating habits were back to pure crap. Fast forward to early March of this year. Not only is it a good time to start dieting for summer, but my brother is getting married this September. We went in to have our bridesmaids dresses fitted and ordered, and I was not happy with how I looked in the dress nor the size I had to order. Size 16… for a 5 ft. tall girl. Ick! Now these dresses run much smaller than most other clothes, and my pants size is easily 3 or 4 sizes smaller than 16, but it still made me feel disgusted with myself (and it didn’t help that two of the other girls were ordering sizes 2 and 4!). On the bright side, it finally clicked in my head that I need to pursue a healthier lifestyle. Not only that, but I love fashion, and at the moment I absolutely dread shopping for clothes.

That following week I started dieting. The only reason I waited a few days to begin was because I had a few gift cards to restaurants that would likely have been major speed bumps in my road to weight loss had they have been staring at me in my wallet during my journey. I started out by searching the internet for some fad diets. I went in knowing that they are just that- fads- and that the results are not only varied, but not permanent. I needed to do something drastic, though, so I decided on trying the 3 day diet. It claims that you can lose up to 10 lbs in three days, but I would’ve been happy with 5! I will post the exact diet at the end of this entry, along with the few substitutions I made. The first go was really successful. I lost 7 lbs! Was it hard? Absolutely. The portions are so much smaller than I was used to, so I was hungry a lot. Not to mention many of the foods weren’t something I typically cared for, especially without much seasoning or flavor allowed to be added, and not everything was easy to substitute so I just sucked it up and did it. I did gain 3 or 4 of those lbs. back after going off of the diet, but then lost 5 more lbs. the 2nd week.

I only did this diet twice over the span of 2 weeks. After doing so well the first time, I had originally planned on doing it once a week until a big chunk of the weight was off, however, the food is just so bland that it was highly unlikely I’d stick to it. It did help me with portion control, lowering my carbs, and giving me a whole new appreciation for the taste of veggies and meats (that aren’t covered in sauces)! I decided to try eating healthy by myself without a strict diet controlling what I put in my stomach, and the weight is still coming off (I’m going to do another post about my current eating habits)!

Anyway, while most people would advise you to avoid fad dieting and anything that claims to help you drop heaps of weight in a small amount of time, I have to say this experience was a positive one for me. I do agree that it’s unhealthy and unrealistic to continue a diet like this for a prolonged period of time, but it worked as a great motivation for me. Seeing 7 lbs come off made me have more confidence in myself and gave me the push I needed to continue with my healthy eating. I’m sure it also gave my metabolism a boost and helped shrink my stomach a bit so I was used to smaller meals. It also made me realize that I could actually get full off of just meats and veggies! My new mentality is eat to live, rather than live to eat!

Here is the diet, with the substitutions I made marked by an asterisk (*) and in italics. The plan I followed and copied is from this website!

DAY 1
Breakfast: 1/2 Grapefruit, 1 Slice of Toast, 2 Tablespoons of Peanut Butter, and Coffee or Tea
*I drank a cup of water with 1/2 tsp of baking soda and an orange in place of the grapefruit. I used whole wheat bread, untoasted, and put the peanut butter on it. I added 2 packets of Splenda to my coffee.
Lunch: 1/2 Cup of Tuna, 1 Slice of Toast, and Coffee or Tea (any brew, as long as it’s caffeinated)
*I substituted the tuna for a 1/2 Cup of plain chicken, cooked with Pam Cooking Spray, and seasoned with a small amount of salt and pepper. The bread was whole grain wheat, and I added 2 packets of Splenda to my coffee.
Dinner: 3 ounces of any type of meat, 1 Cup of Green Beans, 1/2 Banana, 1 Small Apple, and 1 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I ate (roughly) 3 ounces of chicken for my meat. I don’t have a scale to measure food, so I more or less just eye balled about a half of a small chicken breast. I cooked it in a pan with Pam Cooking Spray and a small amount of salt and pepper, as well as on the green beans.

DAY 2
Breakfast: 1 egg, 1 Slice of Toast, and 1/2 Banana
*I ate my egg scrambled, with a small amount of salt and pepper, with whole grain wheat bread toast. I still drank 2 cups of coffee sweetened with Splenda. I need my caffeine not only to maintain energy, but it’s an excellent appetite suppressant, too!
Lunch: 1 Cup of Cottage Cheese (Or 1 Slice of Cheddar Cheese), 1 Hard Boiled Egg, and 5 Saltine Crackers
*I went with one slice of cheddar, and cooked it with 1 scrambled egg into an omelet, as I just cannot eat hard boiled eggs. Scrambled eggs aren’t my favorite thing in the world, either, but much easier to swallow!
Dinner: 2 Hot Dogs (no buns), 1 Cup of Broccoli, 1/2 Cup of Carrots, 1/2 Banana, and 1/2 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I used Oscar Mayer regular pork hot dogs. I cooked the broccoli in a pan with cooking spray and seasoned with a small amount of salt and pepper. I boiled the carrots and used salt and pepper on them, as well.

DAY 3
Breakfast: 5 Saltine Crackers, 1 Slice of Cheddar Cheese, and 1 Small Apple
*I broke up the slice of cheddar to eat with my crackers. I saved my apple to act as more of an in between breakfast/lunch snack to try and curb my hunger better at work, and it really helped! I still drank 2 cups of coffee sweetened with Splenda.
Lunch: 1 Hard-Boiled Egg, and 1 Slice of Toast
*I ate a scrambled egg with salt and pepper on whole grain wheat toast.
Dinner: 1 Cup of Tuna, 1/2 of a Banana, and 1 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I ate 1 cup of plain chicken cooked in a pan with Pam Cooking Spray and a small amount of salt and pepper in place of the tuna.

April 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm 121 comments

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The Amy Blog

Hello, I'm Amy! I was born in '85 and live in Pittsburgh, PA. I became the mama of my wonderful son in 2004, and also own 3 kitties that I treat like children. I am a self-admitted cosmetics and beauty addict, but I also enjoy fashion, music, art, and am totally guilty of reading way too much celebrity gossip. :P

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