Friday, July 27, 2012

Fekkai's Brilliant Glossing Cream is so glossy!

              I've been using Brilliant Glossing Cream from Frederic Fekkai for a couple years. I comb a marble size amount through my hair right after a shower because I love what it does for my texture. Although it's not mentioned as a benefit, it thickens my flat hair. The main attraction, however, is the glossiness. It makes my hair look so shiny and healthy, even right now with all the split ends I need to cut off. I also love the smell too! It does not smell like typical hair cream at all; it's more of a perfume scent. It's not drying at all though. 

The benefits of using it daily are great. My hair is thicker and healthier looking even though it's currently brittle and thinning from a nutritional problem. The price tag may be off putting but Fekkai is so worth it. I've tried a sample of the Brilliant Glossing shampoo and conditioner as well, and let's just say if I could afford it, I'd probably be using that. I don't have a before picture, but this is how shiny and glossy my hair is and I attribute it to Fekkai's Brilliant Glossing Cream!

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Dark Monk by Oliver Pötzsch... An amazing read!

I'm almost finished with the Kindle book The Dark Monk. I received it and its prequel The Hangman's Daughter from BzzAgent. It's a website where members are chosen for BzzCampaigns where they receive BzzKits containing free items to try and share. This particular BzzCampaign consisted of two totally free Kindle books! I finished The Hangman's Daughter, the first book, in two days and I'm almost done reading The Dark Monk. These two books are fast paced, historical thrillers that take place in 17th century Bavaria.

What I love about these books is how easy it is for me to relate to. My mom is from Bavaria, and I've visited cities that are mentioned in the book and been very close to Schongau, so it's very easy for me to visualize, but Mr. Pötzsch is a fantastic writer and Lee Chadeayne does a great translation and I think even somebody who has never been to Bavaria would be able to picture the setting. At the end of this post, I'll actually include some pictures of the area.

One detail from the first book I loved is the superstition about redheads. I'm a redhead and my grandparents were stunned when I was born. In Germany historically red hair has been a sign of a witch and that is a part of the story, as one character is a redhead and concerned that her hair will mark her as a witch.

It's also cool that the books were inspired by the author's genealogy. I love working on my own family tree and I've had story ideas based on stories I've found about my ancestors so that angle adds extra charm. Obviously it's purely fiction, but just knowing that genealogy was an inspiration made it that much neater to read.

Both books are easy reads. They fly by so fast. In this case, however, easy read doesn't mean a bad story at all. The story in both books is very engrossing and it was usually hard to put my Kindle down when it was time to go to sleep. One morning I almost missed a doctor appointment because I lost track of time!

Check out The Hangman's Daughter  and The Dark Monk by Oliver Pötzsch and translated by Lee Chadeayne and sign up for BzzAgent if you haven't already. They've got new campaigns frequently so there's always something to do!

As promised, here are a couple pictures of Bavaria to help set the scene.

Landsberg, where Benedikta is from

 a Bavarian village church, possibly similar to the church in The Dark Monk

an inside view of a Bavarian church, with a balcony on the right

 Bavarian countryside and a village

the Lech river that is mentioned frequently. This view is in Landsberg

a Bavarian farm. This is very typical architecture through the region

a picture of girls dressed similar to the time The Dark Monk is set

 boys reenacting the war that is mentioned frequently. This is similar dress to what the characters would have worn

Here's a video review of the Hangman's Daughter!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sally Hansen Magnetic Nail Color works!

Influenster is a website where members are chosen based on demographics for VoxBoxes, which are boxes filled with amazing goodies to try and review. I've received two boxes from them already. Although I wasn't chosen for their Summer Beauty VoxBox I noticed it had Sally Hansen Magnetic Nail Color in it. I've wanted to try this nail polish for a long time, but with the cost, I wasn't sure if it would be worth it. As member started receiving their Summer Beauty VoxBoxes, the pictures started posting. And I was stunned. So I decided to take a chance and try it for myself. It works. It's very easy to use. Just a thin layer, let it dry, then apply a really thick layer and hold the magnet over it for ten seconds. Yes, it takes only ten seconds for the design. It's so simple even a spaz like me can do it and make it look good.

Yup, it works and it takes no more effort than regular nail polish. So although I did not receive it for free, I saw the photos from other Influensters and decided to try it for myself. I spent my own money on this, and  it was worth it! Sally Hansen has quickly become my favorite nail polish brand. Check out my post about Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips and check out the gorgeous colors in Sally Hansen's magnetic collection!

Check out my video tutorial to see how easy it is to use!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Be. Wines- Delicious and Simple

As a BzzAgent, I was invited to join the recent Be. Wines campaign! I'm an occasional wine drinker, so I don't know much about the different varieties, but Be. Wines actually makes it fun and easy to figure out what to try. BzzAgent sent me a BzzKit containing a booklet about the brand with a fun quiz to discover my mood, a high value rebate for myself, five rebates to share with friends, and fun goodies like lip gloss, a mirror, a nail file, and delicious mints!

Now, Be. has four types of wine and they each correspond to a mood. You can choose based on the mood or if you already know what you like, just pick that. The quiz was helpful since I don't know much about wine. I bought the Riesling and the Pink Moscato. I took the Riesling to our father's day dinner to share withe the family since my mom is German and loves German wine. The Pink Moscato I shared with a couple friends at a get together. As a woman who only drinks occasionally, I really loved both of them. The Riesling was a great sweet wine and went well with the fish we ate for dinner. The Pink Moscato is definitely aptly named. It was indeed a flirty drink and I wouldn't hesitate to order it (or bring it with me) for a date. One of my friends drinks wine quite frequently and is what I'd call an expert. She knows the lingo and she's picky but she loved Be. Basically, it's a wine any woman will love.

While I'm on the subject, Be. is definitely marketing toward women, but my dad and brother loved it too. I think they are just trying to make wine seem more fun for the female demographic and less boring. It's definitely got a lot of appeal to a young professional woman. The names of each variety are fun and the bottles have a nice clean design. The goodies that came in my BzzKit were really fun too and great for a young on the go woman.

In short, Be. wine was enjoyed by both occasional and frequent wine drinkers. The marketing targets the younger professional female demographic but my middle aged father and 23 year old brother enjoyed the Riesling as much as I did. Be. is worth giving a try and it's perfect for people who feel a little intimidated or overwhelmed in the wine aisle, like I always have! Sign up for BzzAgent here and check out Be.'s website here for more info!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Ulta Ultimate Red Color Restoring Glaze Review!

For the last few years I've been missing John Frieda's Radiant Red Glaze. I finally wandered into my local Ulta store and noticed they have an Ultimate Red haircare line. I decided to give it a shot but I honestly wasn't that optimistic since I was so in love with John Frieda's red glaze. I've been using the shampoo, conditioner, and color restoring glaze for about a week now and the results are so impressive! My hair went from this:                                                        

to this:

What I love about the Ulta redhead products is they work the first time. There's no need for it to gradually deposit and build up in your hair! It's also easy to use just like the John Frieda products, but with Ulta's you get instant results. Just leave the glaze in for five minutes, wash out, and you're done. I like to put my hair up in a bun while I'm using it so I can multitask and not waste water for that five minutes. It will stain your skin and any fabric it comes into contact with, but you can wash it off skin with soap. Overall, I'm so thrilled I found this. It's not just a substitute, it's an improvement over John Frieda Radiant Red Glaze, so if they never discontinued that, I probably wouldn't have found Ulta's. As long as Ulta keeps loving us redheads, I'll keep coming back for more!