A different kind of Herbal Essences

Herbal Essences Hydro LiciousProduct Review: Herbal Essences Hyrda-Licious De-Damage Boost Shampoo and Conditioner

A few months ago there was a super good coupon in our newspapers for Herbal Essences Shampoos and Conditioners. I was able to get them for about a dollar a piece. (Usually even on sale they are at least $2.50) Needless to say, I splurged. Anybody need some shampoo? I really am trying to find out how to donate some to a local women’s crises center or maybe to a disaster relief.

I have always loved Herbal Essences for its strong but lovely scents and the commercials back in the 90’s. Admit it, you have tried the “Yes, Yes Yes!” in the shower before too.

Specifically, this shampoo and conditioner I pulled is the Hydra-Licious De-Damage Boost. It’s the only one with an interesting swirl pattern. I thought at first that this was something only on the bottle, but it actually comes out with a pretty swirl to it.
It is very creamy. You can feel the shea butter extract and tell it is going to be moisturizing.

If you are expecting big scent that is typical of Herbal Essences I would say you won’t find it here. It has a good berry smell, but it isn’t super strong, and I don’t think it sticks with you after a shower. For people that are sensitive to strong smells that’s a good thing.
This is a good cheap option for you to try if you have dry, damaged hair. It’s a good value for the size bottles you get, and the creamy swirling texture is nice for bringing some moisture back into your hair.
Plus its purple, my second favorite color!

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After Christmas Beauty Finds

After Christmas 2016

Get those Christmas Gift Sets before they are gone!

I can’t help myself looking at the big sets of bath products and cosmetics that come out onto Walmart’s shelves before the holiday season. But I always retrain myself until that fateful day, December 26th. In case you didn’t know this is Boxing Day. But here in America is really just “Get your hands on that cheap Christmas stuff” day.

The good thing is its not all holly and ornaments that go on sale. It’s a great time to buy those leftover gift sets that didn’t go home with anyone for Christmas.

Last year I scored large hand soaps for just 50 cents.

I sure didn’t need any product this year but I caved on two items.

You might have seen the big sets of Beautyous at Walmart. I opted for getting a small bucket of it on sale for just $4.94. It included Bath Crystals, a Bath Fizzer, Body Scrub, Shower Gel, and Body Lotion in a cute little blue bucket. The nostalgic design of the items reminded me a little of Soap & Glory’s look, only blue instead of pink.

I have tried the body lotion so far and it seems like a good quality lotion. It is thick and blends well into the skin. The vanilla mint smell I find very refreshing. I like it a lot.

I’m pretty pleased for getting all the products for a little less than a dollar each.

I also splurged this year on some new nail polish. 4 pretty colors in the Cherry Chree set that I snagged for $2.50. It also includes 32 cinnamon roll scented polish remover pads. I love the convenience of nail polish remover pads but I don’t often buy them since they can be more expensive than a big jug of remover and some cotton pads. I really think getting 32 in this set is a great deal for a few bucks, let alone 4 really pretty colors of polish that I can’t wait to try out.

I’ve been sick lately and not feeling up to using a whole lot of beauty products. As soon as I get better I’m going to make every effort to rededicate some time to the Beauty Backpack. I do apologize for letting life get the best of me this year.

But 2017 is a new year and I have a lot more cool things to try and review. My hopes for this blog are to also possibly start doing more tutorials, maybe even a video or two.

I sincerely hope all my readers out there had a Merry Christmas. Happy New Year to each and every one of you!

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Nail Polish Strips. These are real polish too!

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish StripsProduct Review: Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips


$4.34 on Amazon

I am trying to polish my nails more often. I’ve sometimes opted for the nail polish strips that are available from different retailers these days. I absolutely can not do nail art to save my life, so I think it’s neat to be able to buy these prefabricated nail polish strips that already have a design printed on it.

You can buy these from different places, in all different prints. I’m partial to the floral designs. For this review I chose a more spring than summer print from Sally Hansen’s Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips.

One of the things I love about these nail polish strips from Sally Hansen, is that it is actually real nail polish. Sometimes you find some of these that are just stickers basically. You can feel that this is in fact, nail polish.

But these are really easy to apply too. Peel, stick, smooth, peel again, and file off the excess.

However, they lie when they say this stuff comes off easily with nail polish. It comes off, but it is thick and sticky and expect to get it all over your fingers trying. Good news is it comes off skin in one shower.

The removal was a bit of a mess for me, but I found it was still very much so worth it. The polish lasted for an entire week with very minimal chipping and cracking.

If you feel like something more decorative, these strips may be just what you need. I like how they give you the professional manicure look, but can be done yourself in minutes.

Pro Tip: I apply a layer of top coat onto these when I use them and find it extends the life of the polish by a few days.

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Shugar Soapworks Dollar Tree Soap

Shugar Soapworks Dollar Tree SoapProduct Review: Shugar Soapworks Oatmeal & Verbena Soap – 7oz bar for $1 at Dollar Tree

I don’t tend to get my beauty fix at the Dollar Tree. I had intended to get some cheap kitchen serving spoons (which are actually great quality. I love them) and I ended up in the personal care section, wasting some time looking at some really bad looking makeup brushes. I was tempted by a eye shadow palette that looked similar to Urban Decay’s Naked palette, but I decided to try that another time.
However, I did need some soap and much to the dismay of my husband, I did not pick up his favorite Irish Spring. I got distracted instead on this bar of soap from Shugar Soapworks. I’ve never heard of the brand but the fanciful box drew me in. The graphic design got me again. It never fails. But more than that I was intrigued by the weight of the bar and the “Oatmeal and Verbena” scent it supposedly had. I love oatmeal soap. I’ve used plenty in the past and it’s a scent I could bathe in everyday.
So I took it home, unboxed it, and was highly surprised at the size of this dollar bar. It is huge. It’s like holding up a brick with rounded corners.
The back of the box said Shugar Soapworks are free from animal by-products, chemicals and plastics. I’m always okay with that. No colors or parabens are in this soap either.
So on to what happened when I used it.
The soap is so big it is a little cumbersome. I love a good value, but the size made it difficult to use. Also, it was a slippery devil. It is made with essential oils and you can feel it. It feels great on the skin, super moisturizing, but it can be difficult to hold onto too. It’s so silky feeling and left my skin feeling like I’d just put on lotion.
But the smell left me very confused. I bought Oatmeal and Verbena. I detected no Oatmeal at all. Once I Googled Verbena and found out it was a flower I couldn’t really smell any of that either. The one thing I was getting very strongly? Lemon. I’m talking Lemony Pledge smell, and nothing but.
That makes no sense. My only conclusion is that the wrong bar of soap made it’s way into the oatmeal box. Shugar Soapwork’s makes a Lemon Verbena soap as well.
If that’s what happened, then I guess this review is really for their lemon soap, but I can’t be sure. In any case, the soap was super moisturizing and a great deal at only a dollar. I plan on sharing it with the husband. He’ll fuss it’s not Irish Spring. He will just have to deal though, and use this great deal of a soap.

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Oh Sugar! Yes Please!

Oh Sugar Lip BalmProduct Review: Covergirl Oh Sugar Vitamin Infused Lip Balm

Retails $7.99 in drugstores but they can often be found on sale for less.

Last week I talked about dry as a desert Kat Von D Agatha lipstick. My lips felt seriously parched after that event and were in need of some serious moisture.

I am a graphic designer you all, so when I saw this square tube of goodness in the store with the playful font spelling out “Oh Sugar” on it, I was all in. It really only takes some good design for cosmetics to come home with me.

It’s kind of refreshing to see a lip balm in a standard lipstick-like tube. I think sometimes companies try to hard for something unique in lip balms and forget how timeless the quintessential twist up tube can be. The squared off container makes it a bit different.

Oh Sugar comes in a big selection of colors but the one I chose and used in this review is called “Sprinkle”.

I like the color. It’s a very pronounced deep pink that applies evenly. It feels a little slick and oily, likely due to the grapeseed oil inside. There’s also avacado butter and Vitamins E and C that make this balm vitamin-enriched. It sort of has the same feel of Fresh Sugar, which is likely what they were going for, to make a dupe of that product. Fresh Sugar feels a little better on to me, and lasts a lot longer, however I don’t think their product is as sturdy. I have already broke one of those because it’s so soft. Oh Sugar does not feel like it will have that problem. It feels like a strong stick of balm that won’t break easily.Oh Sugar Lip Balm

Covergirl’s Oh Sugar feels lightweight and adds great shine and color. I’ve started to carry this everywhere with me, and I’m surprised it hasn’t melted when I absentmindedly left in it my hot car for too long. It’s held up great so far on the go.

Oh, and it smells nice too. This one kind of smells like fruit punch to me.

Overall, a good find and a good dupe for Fresh Sugar. If you are wanting something with some color, shine, and softness give this one a try.

Oh Sugar Lip Balm

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BB Cream from Maybelline

Maybelline Dream Pure BB CreamMaybelline Dream Pure BB Cream


Product Review: Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream

$8.99 retail in drug stores. I got it for $6.99 with a coupon

BB Cream. An Asian phenomenon that started in an effort to moisturize, protect and correct the skin. It stands for blemish balm, or sometimes beauty balm. Most of them add some color and can be used in place of foundation. Many find that it feels better on then foundation because it is lightweight and provides some degree of coverage. Plus the antioxidants and SPF inside most BB Creams will help improve your skin.

I was extra intrigued by the Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream because of it’s claim to improve acne as well. It has 2% Salicylic Acid as an acne treatment.

Now I will say that I have only used this a couple times, so I can’t fully vouch for if the acne treatment works. I can tell you I have seen some minimal improvement in my acne since.

Whether it helps or not, I’m going to keep using it. I like all the other features to it. It does feel lightweight, provides enough coverage for me, and is easy to apply and blend. Don’t expect it to provide the same amount of coverage as a heavy foundation, because it can’t do that. Layering it up does a good job though.

Like I said, it does seem to be helping mildly with my acne, and reducing general redness, but it’s hard to tell at this point.

It’s supposed to adjust to your skin tone but I found the lightest shade was just a hair darker than my tone.

I love that a little bit spreads out a long way on my face. It’s very hydrating without feeling too watery. I were to guess, this product will last around 2 months with regular use, at least.

Let’s not forget this product is super inexpensive at around $8.99 retail. With coupons and sales you can find it for less than that. If there’s any chance it can help with my acne for that price, it is well worth it in my book.

One piece of advice, be careful when using products like this. Salicylic Acid can cause some people to get more break outs.

For a drug store BB cream, color me impressed.


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Oh Honey Honey! Whole Blends Repairing Mask

 Garnier Whole Blends Honey Mask

Product Review: Garnier Whole Blends Honey Treasures Repairing Mask

Retails for $6.99. I’m pretty sure I got it for $5.99 with a coupon

Anybody else noticed the new Whole Blends products sweeping the personal care section of the store? I’ve noticed because for a while now, Red Plums inserts have been offering coupons for the brand. My guess is to get people to try it that much easier. It worked for me. I picked up this Honey Treasures Repairing Mask since I wasn’t in dire need of any shampoo or conditioner at the moment.

Where I don’t get my hair cut very often, sometimes it can feel damaged and dry, particularly at the ends. So I was pretty excited to try this.
First off wow there’s a lot of product in here for around 6 or 7 bucks! Even though you might need a generous amount like me if you have long hair there is plenty in here to keep a person using it for a long time.
Second off it smells AMAZING. I don’t really know much about the royal jelly that is in this, but the honey smell in this is intoxicating. Best part is, it actually sticks with your hair for way longer than I expected it would. I caught whiffs of honey scent in my hair even after 8 hours.
But what you really want to know is the results right? Well here’s what happened. My hair felt noticeably softer after just one use. The ends were a little less brittle feeling, but my hair overall felt softer, stronger, and did I mention it smelled great?
I don’t know but to me it’s worth it just for that aspect.
Something I really liked about this is it was what I would call an “easy” hair treatment. Just work a glob into your hair, wait 3 minutes, rinse. I like stuff that is no muss, no fuss. Sometimes I get discouraged looking at the directions of hair masks but this one was nice and easy. I will say you need to wait the full 3 minutes. I got in a hurry this morning and didn’t, and my hair isn’t as soft as it was the first time. So really allow the product to set in before you rinse out.
I know sometimes these brands pop up and get discontinued fast. I really hope Garnier holds on to this collection! If you are looking for something to just put a touch of softness and repair your damaged hair a bit (Plus make it smell delicious!) go check this out. I’m happy I did!

Not many coupons this week, but it’s Frugal Friday so we’ll still post them! Red Plum inserts for 05.26.16 have coupons for the following beauty products.

* Save $3.00 on 2 Garnier Fructis Shampoo, Conditioner, treatment or styling product.
* Save $1.00 on Garnier Fructis Shampoo, Conditioner, or Treatment
* Save $1.00 on Garnier Fructis Styling Prooduct
* Save $5 on any 2 Superior Preference or Excellence haircolor products
* Save $2 on any Superior Preference or Excellence haircolor product
* Save $1 on any Loreal Paris Root Cover Up Spray
* Save $3 on any Loreal Paris La Palette
* Save $1 on any Loreal Paris Mascara product
* Save $1 on any Loreal Paris Liner or Brow product

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A dry shampoo that is invisible.

Salon Grafix Dry ShampooProduct Review: Salon Grafix Invisible Dry Shampoo

Available at Drug Stores for $5.97
I used a ibotta rebate for $1.00 back

So I was looking for a good dry shampoo at the store. I was highly tempted by a Batiste brand that was supposed to add shine and color for blondes, but the ibotta rebate for $1.00 back on Salon Grafix sealed the deal for me.
I spoke earlier about using dry shampoo on days in-between washes.  I have always had a hard time with things in an aerosol can getting clogged up and so after fighting my last can for a half hour, I needed some new.
Most dry shampoos out there will cause one or two problems like, a sticky residue, or a white powder residue, because after all, the key ingredient in most is some sort of starch. This advertised on the can “No White Powder Residue”. I’m happy to report that is true. I am guessing that comes from the lack thereof starch in the ingredient list. Unless something in it is starch, disguising itself under another name. If it is, please correct me. I see some sort of flower though.

Ingredients: Butane, SD Alcohol 40-B, Propane, Zeolite, Triclosan, BHT, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Polyquaternium-59, Butylene Glycol, Propylene Glycol, Water, Anthemis Nobilis Flower, Echinacea Angustifolia, Urtica Dioica, Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Extract, Fragrance, PEG-12 Dimethicone, PPG-12-Buteth-16.

When I used this Salon Grafix product, I found it was very easy and quick. Shake, spray, and finger comb your hair. I have a whole lot of hair and it only took a few minutes to get good coverage with it. My hair felt dryer, and even though it did not advertise to do this, I found that it gave my hair a little lift and volume.
It did have a smell to it; one that I would call decent. Not great, not the worst. It smells like a typical hairspray coming out of an aerosol can. Alcohol smell, with a hint of citrus maybe? In any case the smell isn’t super powerful and goes away after a bit.
The dryness lasted about 6 hours before it started feeling oily and needing another spray. It didn’t make it through a whole 8 hours at work, but I was still pretty impressed.
If you are someone like me who wants to make sure your hair doesn’t look like it’s been hit with corn starch, give this dry shampoo a try. You may find it to be your new best friend on your lazy days or in-between days of no hair-washing.

Our newspapers were loaded up with coupons this week. Red Plum inserts for this week 05.17.16.

* $1.00 off Pantene Hairspray

* $1.00 off Pantene 3 Minute Miracle Deep Conditioner

* $3.00 off Herbal Essences Shampoo, Conditioner or Styling Products

* $2.00 off Clairol Natural Instincts Crema Keratina Hair Color

* $2.00 off 2 Pantene Products

* $3.00 off 2 Pantene Expert Shampoo or Conditioner

* $2.00 off Advanced Hairstyle product

* $4.00 off 2 Advanced Haircare Shampoo or Conditioner

* $2.00 off Loreal Paris Revitalift Moisturizer

* $3.00 off Loreal Paris Age Perfect Cell Renewal or Glow Renewal

* $2.00 off Loreal Paris Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition, Age Perfect Day Cream, or Night Cream

* $2.00 off Loreal Paris Foundation

* $1.00 off Loreal Paris Powder, Blush, Concealer or Primer

* $2.00 off Loreal Paris Sublime Bronze

* $2.00 Garnier Nutrisse or Color Styler

* $4.00 off 2 Whole Blends Shampoo & Conditioner or Treatment

* $1.00 off Whole Blends Shampoo or Conditioner

* .50 cents off can of Pure Silk Shave Cream

* $2.00 off Shea Moisture Hair Care Product

* $2.00 off Shea Moisture Bath, Body or Baby Product

* $1.00 off Shea Moisture Bar Soap

* $1.50 off Suave Professionals Gold Hair CareProduct

* $1.00 off Suave Professionals Shampoo or Conditioner or Treatment

* .50 cents off Suave Body Wash

* .75 cents off Suave Body Lotion

* $2.00 off Simple Cleanser or Moisturizer

* $1.00 off Simple Facial Wipes

* $1.00 off Ponds product

* $1.00 off Noxema Product

* $2.00 off Vaseline Intensive Care Lotion or Vaseline Spray Moisturizer

* $3.00 off 2 Dove Hair Care Products

* Buy one Tresemee Beauty-Full Volume Pre-Wash Conditioner get one FREE Beauty-Full Volume Shampoo

* $3.00 off 2 Tresemee Shampoo & Conditioner

* $1.50 off St. Ives Body Wash, Scrub, or Face Care product

* .75 cents off Caress Beauty Bar 6 pack or Body Wash product

* $1.00 off Clear Shampoo or Conditioner

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Sweet Kiwi! Exfoliating my dry skin!

Korres Kiwi ScrubProduct Review: Korres Kiwi Gentle Exfoliating Scrub for Dry Skin

http://www.korresusa.com/kiwi-gentle-exfoliating-scrub – It’s out of stock right now. But was on sale for $10 for a 1.69 oz tube.

That was a play on Maroon 5’s “Kiwi” song in the title of this post, in case you didn’t catch it. That’s one of their more obscure songs, and not my favorite. I think it is talking about something more than a kiwi fruit in it.

But I digress; I picked up this scrub online while it was on sale for $10. I was slightly disappointed to see the size of the tube was not as big as I thought it would be. I knew it was 1.69 oz. but from the picture, it looked at least the size of a tube of toothpaste, but it wasn’t quite that.Korres Kiwi Scrub Closeup

I can’t complain too much because it has lasted me several uses and is still going. It smells really nice. It’s not overly kiwi but does have a hint of it along with apple and orange that comes from their respective juices inside the product. The green scrub is filled with black beads that do the scrubbing. I use it in the shower and rub it in on the back of my arms every other day. After about a month of use, I noticed my arms felt softer, and a bit less dry. It also seemed to help with the redness from my Keratosis pilaris (A.K.A. chicken skin) I wouldn’t call it a cure, but the bumps went down and the overall appearance of my arms was smoother. So that is an added bonus for me!

Considering that, I would agree this could be good for dry skin. Don’t exfoliate daily, a few times a week is good. But if you think you might need something for those dry scaly patches of skin like mine, you might find this worth a try.

Coupons from Red Plum Inserts of 5/11/16 edition

* $2.00 off Aussie Shampoo, Conditioner or styling products

* $2.00 off 2 Herbal Essences Shampoo, Conditioner or Styling Products

* $2.00 off any Loreal Paris Excellence or Excellence Age Perfect haircolor

* $2.00 off Garnier Olia Oil-Powered Haircolor

* $1.00 off Dial or Tone Body Wash, Dial or Tone bar soap, Dial lotion

* $1.00 off 2 Dial Complete or Dial Kids Foaming Hand Wash, Dial Liquid Soap refills, Dial advanced bar, Dial bar 3-bar or larger.

* $4.00 off Schwarzkopf Hair Care or Styling Products

* $2.00 off Schwarzkopf Hair Care or Styling Products

* $2.00 off got2b styling product

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Gift Idea Alert: Digital Coupons for Gift Cards

Gift Cards Mother's Day Gift Idea

Mother’s Day Gift Idea! Right here. Save some money on the gift cards she wants!

Mother’s Day is Sunday. That’s right, this Sunday. In case you forgot or are a procrastinator like I can be at times, I have a quick and easy idea for you. Best part is, you’ll save money doing it and mom doesn’t have to know that part!

If you have a Kroger Plus Card, get online and make your account so you can take a look at their wide selection of digital coupons.
I’ve talked in the past about how you can find great coupons on Kroger’s website to load for personal health and beauty products, but did you know that from time to time, they will offer up coupons on gift cards as well?

This week I took advantage of the fact that there are some gift cards with coupons for companies like Spafinder.com, Sephora, and Bath & Body Works. These digital coupons expire on 05/21/16 so go ahead and load them to your card. If you plan on using them as Mother’s Day gifts, go out and get them soon. The spafinder.com and Sephora deal requires you to buy two gift cards equaling to be $50. (2 $25 cards is what I found worked.) The Bath and Body Works one says two gift cards, excluding the $10 cards, so I’m assuming from that it’s basically the same in having to by 2 $25 cards.

So you have two cards to be able to give to a mom, grandmother, mother-in-law, sister, friend or co-workers who are moms. Or you could even give one to mom and keep one for yourself. Don’t worry, I won’t tell. Have no shame.

Another added perk is that buying gift cards at Kroger rewards you with 2 times fuel points. So you’ll get 100 fuel points just for picking up 50 bucks worth of these cards.
I especially like the Sephora one. You get 50 dollars worth but save $10. If you shop in the sale section or value sets on their site, you know that mom could actually get quite a few things for that.
Take advantage of this sweet deal before it is gone.

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