Apr 25, 2015

Instrumental Beauty Sonic Facial Brush Review #ad

I have been seeing commercials for years about those sonic facial brushes and I never really thought I needed one. I have pretty good skin and I have my daily regimen that works (or so I thought). I got the opportunity to review the Instrumental Beauty sonic facial brush and decided to have an open mind. What does a sonic brush even do? Well, it uses sonic vibration technology to penetrate your pores to remove impurities that regular face washing misses. All this time I was thinking that my every day face washing routine was more than enough. Boy, was I wrong!

This amazing sonic facial brush has a sleek design and comes with 2 ultra soft bristle pads that fit securely on its own caddy/charging station. When I held the brush in my hand for the first time, I had to figure out how to charge it. It showed no battery unit from the outside. It is actually inside and the unit is made to be waterproof which means you can take it on the shower. This is especially helpful if you are using it on your neck.

The instructions state that you must charge the unit for the first time for 16 hours. It lights up in a bright blue so you might want to leave it charging in a room that you are not trying to sleep in. The brush has 3 speeds and it is very important to not use a lot of pressure when you put it against your skin. Trust me on that one! Also, make sure you are generous with the amount of water you put on the bristles. A dry brush will make you feel like you are scraping your skin. Again, trust me on that! You can use your favorite face wash or soap with this brush and you are well on your way to the most clean and smooth skin ever!

Speaking of soap, you must try out Yardley of London's New Nourishing Elements Artisan Soap. it is made with 100% sustainable vegetable oils, natural butters and botanicals. They are extra gentle on all skin types and are cruelty-free and biodegradable. They are available in in 2 varieties; Lavender & Rosemary and Oat, Milk & Honey. They retail for $4.99 for a 3-pack and can be found at drugstores nationwide. The Oat, Milk & Honey is my favorite!



Okay, back to the brush--- Once I figured out how the speeds worked as well as how much face wash I needed, I was well on my way to glowing skin. This brush is especially good because it has a built-in timer that pauses the unit for a couple seconds to remind you when it is time to move bristles to another area of your skin. I have been using my sonic facial brush once a day and I especially love the convenience of taking it in the shower with me. Overall, I really love the Instrumental Beauty sonic facial brush and highly recommend it to anyone looking for one. It would even make a nice Mother's Day gift.

The Instrumental Beauty Sonic Facial Brush can be purchased at select drugstores and at InstrumentalBeauty.com for $80.00.

I received a sonic facial brush unit and soap samples for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own as always.

Apr 24, 2015

My Hair Is My Best Accessory #HairfinityStyle #ad

I am a Niche Parent Network & Conference Influencer. Thanks to Hairfinity for sponsoring today's post.

I can remember the days of being a little girl and being forced by my mom to get my hair cut in that bowl-shaped bob or those awful home-cut bangs. I hated it! All I dreamed of was having long, flowing hair. I went through so many hairstyles and phases throughout my middle and high school years. I grew up in the late 80s/early 90s so I wore all of the big, poufy hair styles. If you grew up in that time frame, you probably did some dramatic things to your hair whether it was hair color, a permanent wave or overuse of hair products. I was the Princess of hair spray in high school. I wore that signature "fan" on the top of my hair and teased it to make it extra big. I now look back and think; thank goodness the 80s are behind us!

I have always believed that stylish hair is my best accessory. I didn't always have body confidence, so my hair was my main focus. As long as I kept it cut or trimmed and took a few extra minutes each day for "primping," I would look more put together and feel confident. I take great pride in caring for my tresses and have grown to love my hair! I keep it relatively long so that I am able to toss it up into a messy ponytail on those bad hair days.

I have learned some great hair care tips over the years that I incorporate daily. I believe that drinking water is the number one most important thing. On the flip side, over washing is a big no-no. I try to go a day or two between washing to preserve my natural shine and fullness. If I wash it too often, it looks dull and lifeless. Proper diet is also key to fabulous, healthy hair. You must eat a good balance of fruit, vegetables and protein every day. If you can't stick to a healthier way of eating, a vitamin supplement can help. Hairfinity Hair Vitamins help encourage healthy growth from the inside out. Who wouldn't want that?!
The famous reality show sisters, Kim and Khloe Kardashian, have teamed up with Hairfinity Hair Vitamins. They certainly have the hair and style so many of us aspire to have.

Please join in on the #HairfinityStyle Twitter party on 4/26 from 10:00-11:00 PM EST for a recap of the Keeping up with the Kardashians episode and to talk all things hair and fashion.

There will be prizes so make sure you RSVP here and  follow the #HairfinityStyle hashtag. I hope to see you there!

Apr 19, 2015

New beauty favorite: Lypsyl Intense Protection Lip Balm

I have a confession: I’m a lip balm addict. I can’t go a day, even hours without it. I carry one in my purse, keep one in my make-up bag at home, have one (or two) stashed in my kitchen junk drawer and few other spots around the house. I have tried various brands over time and have my beloved favorites. I received a sample tube of lip balm that I had never heard of before called, Lypsyl in Original Mint. It’s a Silky Swedish Beeswax lip balm and contains organic shea butter and coconut oil. Just that description alone made me want to try it out for myself.
It has a very unique tube that is shaped differently that the average round barrels of most lip balms. It also has the most adorable yellow honeybee that used as a slider to dispense the lip balm. So cute! But how well does it work? It goes on super smooth with no sticky feeling and leaves your lips feeling completely quenched. I find that even if I eat or drink, the product keeps my lips super soft and moisturized. That’s amazing since I almost always feel the need to apply more after eating. It wears really well under lip color. I think it even extends the wear of my lipstick.
Lypsyl Intense Protection lip balms come in 3 flavors: Original Mint, HoneyBerry, and the Ultra Soothing Chamomile & Honey (ARV $2.99). They can be purchased at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Duane Reade and ShopRite stores. If you are looking for a very moisturizing, long lasting lip balm, you must give Lypsyl a try! I am so glad I found a new favorite. I will have to stop by my local Wal-Mart or Walgreens to pick up a couple extra for my daughters. Find Lypsyl on the web and on Facebook for product promotions and updates.

Disclosure: I received a complimentary product for review purposes. All opinions are 100% mine as always.

Apr 2, 2015

Unlock the last video in the Bruegger's Bagels #BehindtheTaste Series ($25 GC Giveaway)

Earlier this year I talked about the Behind the Taste video series from Bruegger's Bagels. These videos take you behind-the-scenes to showcase the authentic approach the bakery takes when selecting and creating its bagels, cream cheese and smoked salmon. April 1st marks the final video to be unlocked and this one discusses their Sun-dried tomato spread (YUM). If you haven't eaten at Bruegger's Bagels, you are truly missing out! We go there at least once a month and are never disappointed in the superior quality of the food and the very personal touches their staff adds to your experience. Who wouldn't want to dine in a place that?

Here is a little recap of the videos, but you don't want to miss out on coupon opportunities so be sure to go to the Behind the Taste site for the full experience.

Behind the Taste Launch

Authentic Bagels

Cream Cheese

Smoked Salmon

Sundried Tomato Spread

As you can see, Bruegger's takes great pride to find the best ingredients for their bagels, cream cheese and other menu items. Be sure to check out the Behind the Taste website and follow Bruegger's on Facebook and Twitter for product promotions and updates.

Giveaway: Two lucky Mom Files readers will each win a $25 Bruegger's gift card! Enter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I was compensated for my time to share this post and host a reader giveaway. All opinions are my own as always. 

Apr 1, 2015

The Best Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

Today I woke up thinking about baking something. I haven't baked any treats in almost a month and thought I would surprise my family with some cupcakes. My hubby is a big fan of yellow cake with chocolate frosting so I went with that. I usually make a chocolate buttercream frosting that we all love, but I really wanted cream cheese frosting. I make plain cream cheese frosting most of the time, but what about a chocolate cream cheese frosting? I searched recipes online and couldn't believe how many variations I found. I looked at about ten recipes and my head started spinning. I closed up my laptop and decided to try making it based off of how I make plain cream cheese frosting. The end result was a rich, creamy, slightly tart and sweet chocolately explosion!

Instead of using salted butter like I usually do, I use unsalted. I also added some pure almond extract as well as pure vanilla. I think the hint of almond flavor really makes it extra special. See the complete recipe below.

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:
1 8 ounce pack of cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
3 1/2 confectioners sugar
1/2 cup minus 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
1/2 tsp pure almond extract
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3-4 tbsp cold whole milk or cream

Directions:
Cream butter and cream cheese together in large mixer bowl. Blend in almond and vanilla extract. Slowly add confectioners sugar and cocoa. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach the consistency desired. You can spread it on cakes or cupcakes or pipe it like I did. It's so easy and is better than anything store bought.

Enjoy and please let me know if you try this recipe. Thanks for reading!
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