Saturday, April 22, 2017

Cat Sitting & Other Antics

Hey all! Not too many big exciting things happening in my universe lately; I've just been enjoying the simple pleasures so I figured I'd just do a little slice of life post.

First thing is I'm currently enjoying cat sitting for the in-laws. One of their doggies is a grumpy new mama and doesn't tolerate Kitty in the same room as her new babies, and Kitty doesn't tolerate not being the center of attention so I "selflessly" offered to take her for a few days. The little house panther and I are having a fabulous time; she is just so affectionate and things are going swimmingly. One thing I've learned is that it's really hard to get a nice photo of a black cat. It's usually either a blurry black blob with eyes, or she always ends up with RBF. I swear she is super sweet ITL and doesn't want to steal your soul!
Here are some gratuitous kitty glamour shots:

I figured while I have the feline it would be  the perfect time to wear this fun cat sheet mask my bloggy friend Julie over at The Redolent Mermaid sent me and take the ultimate cat selfie! Julie is the queen of finding both luxurious and hilarious novelty sheet masks and this one is right up my alley.
It is a nice collagen mask that left my skin feeling hydrated, refreshed and firm. But really I wore it for the amusement factor.
I mean...come on! Aren't we beautiful?!

But I digress. Aside from furry friends and face masks, I always end up having loads of fun with the hubby, even just randomly running errands. A few days ago we stopped by Walmart for a few sundries and my hubby grabbed some superglue from the gloves box to tighten up a piece on his dashcam holder. Little did he know the glue was leaking everywhere until it was much too late...

I had to stop laughing long enough to go back in the store to buy some nail polish remover to help loosen the glue. It took us about half an hour to get him unstuck! Fortunately now permanent harm done.

Then we decided to go to Starbucks for a conciliatory Unicorn Frappuchino. Well, I had planned to go anyway because I'm a sucker for hype. I had seen it meet with a lot of mixed reviews; to me it wasn't bad but it wasn't spectacular either. The main fruity, sweet flavor was nice enough but I didn't care for the sour berry syrup at the end. Overall it was a fun drink to have once but I'm not bummed it's limited edition. I went, I drank, I got the Instagram pic.

Have you tried any fun new things recently?

Friday, April 21, 2017

Recent Wax Reviews

Kitty's Konfections Big Top- "frosted animal crackers and marshmallows." A nice frosted vanilla cookie type scent. Moderate to light throw for about 6-7 hours. Overall grade: B. Can't repurchase.

Ava's County Cupboard Lollipop: a generic sweet fruity candy scent. Pleasant and not sickly sweet. Moderate throw for about 7-8 hours. Overall grade: B+. Probably wouldn't repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel The Upside Down- "redwood forest, moss, patchouli, sandal tree, white musk, sage and sea salt." A captivating scent description. On cold it did smell moderately fresh and herbal with touches of musk and woods. Unfortunately the throw was pretty light when melting. Overall grade: C. Probably wouldn't repurchase.

Scentsationals White Sandalwood: a musky, perfumey sandalwood type scent with a touch of exotic spices. Fairly strong to moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Harvest Apple Cake- "brown sugar and apple crumb cake." This is a delicious smelling and realistic sweet apple bakery scent. Fairly strong throw for about 9 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Sniff My Tarts Adaly's Marshmallow Peeps Mandarin Coconut Cake Coconut Cream Pie. A yummy vanilla marshmallow and sweet coconut combo.  Moderate throw for about 6-7 hours. Overall grade: B+. Might repurchase.

Golden Egg Wax Sweet Lavender & Eucalypts. This was a pretty old piece of wax. I received it in a destash and it's probably at least 2 years old. I'd never heard of this brand but the notes sounded nice together. Unfortunately it had zero throw, probably due to age. I would have loved to smell it fresh. Overall grade: D. Would not repurchase.

Glitterati Plum Tart Vanilla Buttercream Crunch: this is a really yummy and unique blend. It does smell of rich, dusky baked plums sprinkles in brown sugar and folded in a warm pastry. Fairly strong throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Southbound Soap Co Strawberry White Cake. I usually love strawberry cake blends but unfortunately this one had only a vague strawberry aroma and light throw for a few hours. I've had good throw from most other Southbound scents so I think it was an older tart. Overall grade: C. Might repurchase.

NOTD: Kurtsey

3 coats. A pretty cool tones lavender with a subtle shimmer. Fairly smooth; a little streaky on the first coat but opaque in 2-3 coats.

NOTD: Amethyst

KB Shimmer Amethyst: Love this one! 2 coats; so smooth and looks stunning!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

NOTD: Nature & Nails

Loved Arcane Lacquer Comfortable Liar on it's own but I decided to spice it up even more. Black is OPI Black Dress Optional, White is SC Koko-Nuts, Silver Holo is CC Harp On It.

Decided to do a photo shoot in the garden after the rain stopped. All the beauties are blooming including roses, 2 kinds of lavender, mint, artichokes and several other herbs and flowers.

Monday, April 17, 2017

NOTD: Comfortable Liar

3 coats of Arcane Lacquer Comfortable Liar. A beautiful lavender with silver shimmer. A nice smooth formula but it needs 3 coats to be opaque.

Wax Haul: 16 Candles

What's better than a wax haul you ask? A free wax haul!
I belong to a number of Facebook groups dedicated to wax and last week one of them had organized a fun and fabulous series of pun related games that members could participate in. There were about 50 games and prizes and I was fortunate enough to win one of them! The prize I won was for a generous $30 gift certificate to a brand I hadn't heard of before called 16 Candles, donated by Jeremy the owner. I was so excited to have the opportunity to try a new to me brand and the process of picking out products and scents was really fun.
When I visited the 16 Candles website here, I found a professional looking and well organized site that was a pleasure to browse through. One of the first things I noticed was a pop up bar that invites customers to sign up for their rewards program where you can instantly earn $5 off your order. Since I had a $30 gift certificate code and the site only allows you to use one discount code at a time, I will save my $5 off for a future order. If you are interested in trying this brand you can follow the easy rewards sign up steps to get $5 off your first order!

When I browse a wax vendor website, I usually like to look for unique scents that sound pleasant to me. I like to try a wide variety of scents and not have to many extremely similar scents in my stash. Usually it's those special and unique type blends that get me really hooked on a particular brand, as well as themes, nice shapes/packaging and good customer service.
These are the scents I ended up choosing:
I chose a variety of shapes in clamshells, 2 packs of scalloped 1 oz tarts and a large travel tin 2-wick candle with lid. I love to try all the different options a brand offers and find out what works best for me. The products on the site were all reasonably and competitively priced. Even in I hadn't had the gift certificate I would have felt like I got a lot of products for my money. The 14 oz 2-wick travel tin candles are only $13 so for less than $1 oz, I think that's a great deal. Here is part of the description from the site: "These 16 ounce large tin soy candles are hand poured with 100 percent natural soy wax and contains fragrance oils, two cotton wicks dipped in natural wax, and are dye free."
I chose the chai latte scent as I usually tend to like that type of scent. As my order just arrived today, this is the only 16  Candles product I've tested out so far. 

I've had it melting for nearly 3 hours and as you can see it's developing a nice wax  pool, almost to the edges of the container. The wicks are evenly spaces and burning strongly, not flickering or attempting to drown themselves. The tin is sturdy as well; this seems to be a quality candle. As far as throw, I tend to not get as strong of throw from 100% soy candles as I do with paraffin or para-soy blends. I would describe this candle as having moderate to light throw. It took a while for the scent to permeate the air. It is a nice spicy chai aroma, not too sweet. For the first hour or so I could only smell the scent directly above the candle, but it slowly started to produce more scent and I can now smell it lightly throughout the small room. I do prefer my candles to be a bit stronger, but overall I am happy with it's performance. I don't know whether I would purchase other candles from this site, but I might like to try more scents. 16 candles offers several other sizes of soy candles, from 16 oz sizes all the way down to tea lights, in dozens of scents.

Now onto the wax. My order shipped quickly; the site's TAT is stated as 3-5 days and I did receive my items with 7 business days, about 9 days total. With my $30 subtracted I only had to pay for 1 tart, shipping and tax which came out to $11.15 total. The shipping itself was a very reasonable $8.95. The items were very securely packaged in a medium flat rate box with lots of tissue paper, bubble wrap and styrofoam "cheetos." Everything arrived in pristine condition.
The items were all packaged exactly as they had looked in their photos on the website. 

The packaging is clean, simple and very professional and appealing. This is not a brand with a lot of novelties or gimmicks, just well made wax with a variety of blends. They have several dozen different scent offerings but the scent list is not overwhelming. 
I will do individual reviews on these scents as I melt them, but on cold all the scents smelled strong and pleasant; I chose well and didn't end up with anything unpleasant. The ones I'm most excited to try are Coriander & Tonka, Pomegranate Green Tea and Rosemary Mint. The clams are $3 and the 2 pack 1oz tarts are $2.20. I was also pleasantly surprised to receive 3 1 oz free samples in Cotton Candy, Pomegranate Spice and Sweet Pea. All smell good to me and freebies definitely win bonus points in my book.
Communication with the owner was prompt and professional and I had a really good first ordering experience with 16 Candles. I will be excited to melt and share with you these scents, and I would definitely consider ordering from this brand again.
Have you ever heard of or tried 16 Candles? Does this brand or these scents interest you?