REVIEW: OZ Naturals New Age Defying Tinted Sunscreen

Good Morning!

Today I have a review from an all natural skincare brand that is quickly becoming one of my favorite brands.
I’m talking about OZ Naturals and the product I’m featuring today is their brand new Age-Defying Tinted Sunscreen.

 

This sunscreen provides broad spectrum SPF 30 sun protection. I find that the formula absorbs into your skin very quickly and is not at all sticky. It doesn’t feel like a normal sunscreen. It feel smooth and more like a BB cream. This product comes in a 2 fl oz tube so it’s great for travel or for throwing in your bag. Currently this product is available on Amazon at http://amzn.to/1UE744f. 
The tint of this sunscreen is a medium to bronze skin tone color. I have very light skin so I couldn’t use this on my face. I did, however, find that it looks great on my body to add a little color with sun protection. On the days I applied this on my neck, chest, and arms I also applied a matte bronzer to my face to make everything match. (Side Note: My current favorite matte bronzer is the Body Shop Honey bronzer in shade 3)
It does provide really nice sun protection. I have used some sunscreens in the past that had super high SPF (50-100) and somehow I still ended up with a sunburn or more freckles. On the days I used this sunscreen I definitely didn’t get burnt and I didn’t notice any new freckles. I did reapply every 80 minutes but you are supposed to do that with any sunscreen. If you are slightly self-conscious about your feckless like me, the tint of this cream helps blend in those little dots to make your overall skin tone look more even. Since the tint washes off in the shower you can get a subtle bronzed look to your arms and legs without the commitment (and potential disaster) of a sunless tan.
I have also used this sunscreen during my outdoor runs and I found it stayed in place really well. These runs are the only time I used it on my face because I don’t really care what I look like while I’m getting in those miles. Even when my hairline started to sweat the sunscreen still stayed in place and it never ran into my eyes. My husband is a dedicated and extremely sweaty soccer player so I had him try it on his face. The sunscreen stayed in place even with his torrential sweat.
P.S. My husband has a medium skin tone so this would actually be a great product for men who are looking to even out their skin tone while protecting their skin from the sun. It didn’t look like he was wearing makeup either. His skin just looked like it had a healthy glow. This is definitely a unisex product in my opinion.
Overall, I am very pleased with this tinted sunscreen. I most prefer to use it on my legs for days I am wearing a dress or skirt. It also works great on your upper body too. If you have a medium skin tone, this would make a great BB cream.
Product Recap:
  • Medium tinted sunscreen that provided SPF 30 of broad spectrum sun protection
  • All natural
  • Cruelty-free
  • Made in the USA
  • Paraben-Free
  • Comes in 2 Fl oz squeeze tube
  • Cost is $21.99 and it can be purchased at www.oznaturals.com
  • It has a smooth BB cream like texture that absorbs into your skin quickly
  • Great for travel or throwing in your purse.
Have you tried this or other OZ products? Check out the OZ Naturals website at http://www.oznaturals.com/  and don’t forget to sign-up for their newsletter to stay up to date with their newest products.
Other places to find me:
Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbpfO5F6gkN8wjSsCrzOnDg
Instagram: https://instagram.com/courtney.val/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/courtneywval
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/courtneywval/
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CourtneyValYT

*This post is brought to you by Brand Backer. As always all of my opinions and experiences are 100% honest. 

 

 

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REVIEW: Clean Bar Box Subscription

Good morning!

I just posted a new video on my YouTube Channel reviewing a new soap subscription service called Clean Bar Box. This service is similar to the popular beauty subscription services out there in which you pay a small monthly fee and each month they send you new products. In this case all of the products are handmade bars of soap.

There are 3 options for this subscription service:

Monthly Half Bar Sampler Box– $14.99
~This comes with four 2.5oz bars of soap

Monthly Large Box-$19.99
~Comes with two 5 oz bars and two 2.5oz bars

Every Other Month Large Box-$19.99
~Get all the goodies from the monthly large box shipped to you every other month.

I was sent the Monthly Half Bar Sampler Box to try and I love these soaps. From first touch you can feel how moisturizing they are. My box included an exfoliating Blueberry soap that has ground up oatmeal right in the bar for a gentle exfoliation. All of the soaps smelling amazing too.  These scents are neither too feminine nor too masculine so I think this is definitely a unisex product. I even had my husband try them and he loved them too. They cleanse your skin really well and leave you feeling very fresh.

Aesthetically, the packaging of these soaps is very natural looking and it appears that the box and shredded paper in the box can be recycled. Each soap comes in a small burlap pouch that you could reuse. (jewelry, hair ties, small office supplies, bobby pins, etc)

I think this is a really nice subscription service for anyone who loves bath and body products. This would make a really nice gift too.

Watch my review video here:

Thanks for stopping by and I check out the links below to stay connected! 🙂

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbpfO5F6gkN8wjSsCrzOnDg
Instagram: https://instagram.com/courtney.val/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/courtneywval
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/courtneywval/
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CourtneyValYT

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REVIEW: Maxasorb Melatonin Cream For A Good Night’s Sleep!

 

Good Morning, lovelies! How did you sleep?

I recently have been having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. Then I saw an opportunity to apply to review the Vita Sciences Maxasorb Melatonin Cream through Brand Backer. I applied and thankfully was chosen to receieve the product for free to try.

Of course, just because I receive something for free to try doesn’t mean I am paid to say positive things about the product. I always give my 100% honest review of whatever product I try. I try to give best information possible so you can decicde if a product is right for you.

On to the review!

How I use this product:
The directions say to rub one pump of the cream on your arms and legs before bedtime. One pump equals 3mg of Melatonin. I like to use this product in combination with my normal bedtime relaxation routine. I like to take a shower or bath and then apply the cream. I then  make a cup of sleepy time tea while I finish up any little tasks before actually getting into bed. Now, I know if you have children to care for you might not have time to sip tea or take a bath. So you could apply the cream quickly and let is sink in while you get your children ready for bed. Then, by the time they are asleep you will be feeling relax and ready for bed yourself.

Does It Work?
I would say it definitely relaxes you and allows you to fall asleep fast. It is very relaxing. I mean floating on a cloud in a tranquil garden type of relaxed. It will seriously relax you. I think it did also help me stay asleep and wake up rested. I used it on my husband a couple nights too because he was having trouble sleeping and his bouncing around was keeping me awake. He said it did make him feel very relaxed too. My husband has this weird sleeping leg twitch thing that I am not even sure he really knows he does but the nights I applied the cream to him, he wasn’t twitching as much which helped me sleep. Yay!

I have tried other Meltonin pills in the past and they all gave me crazy weird dreams but I didn’t notice that with this product which is great.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is having a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep. 

Other Potential Uses:
Based on my experience I can think of some travel-related situations in which I will use this cream.

  • Overnight flights
    • This would have been great for our 9 hour flight to Brazil last year.
  • Hotel stays
    • I don’t know about you but I sometimes have trouble sleeping well in hotels. I think would help make any relaxing vacation even more restful.
  • Jet lag
    • After you return from a trip to another time zone it can be hard to get your sleep schedule regulated so I think this might help.
Product Details:
Size:50ml
Contains 60 doses. Each dose is 3mg of Melatonin
Price: $19.95

Product Link: http://www.vitasciences.com/MaxasorbMelatonin

Let me know if you have tried this or other sleep aid products and how they worked for you.

Thank you so much for stopping by!

Other places to find me:
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbpfO5F6gkN8wjSsCrzOnDg
Instagram: https://instagram.com/courtney.val/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/courtneywval
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/courtneywval/
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CourtneyValYT

*Powered by Brand Backer

 

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REVIEW: Radha Beauty Skin Clearing Serum

Good Morning, lovelies!

I am really excited to share this skincare review with you today. Over the past 6-8 months I have been dealing with some serious skin issues. I thought I had cleared up my sporadic acne issues and then one day I started getting a lot of blemishes around my chin, on my cheeks, and on my forehead. I thought at first it was hormonal or due to a migraine medication I was taking but the blemishes continued to appear even after I stopped the medication. I discussed these skin issues with my doctor and she could not think of anything in particular that might be causing my constant breakouts.
I also tried changing my diet and taking vitamins. Nothing seemed to work.

I recently joined Brand Backer, which is a platform for bloggers/vloggers. This site allows bloggers to view products and apply to try them. I was reading through the description for the Radha Beauty Skin Clearing Serum and I thought, “Yes, that is what I need. ” I applied and gratefully was accepted. I have been using this product twice a day for two weeks and my skin has improved 100%. The formula is a liquidy consistency but a little goes a long way. You really get a high level of quality for your dollar with this product. I would say it is comparable to extremely high end skincare products. The scent is herbal and fresh. I do find that the scent goes away once the product full absorbs into your skin.

After two weeks of use all of the deep blemishes I was experiencing are gone and I started noticing an improvement in my skin after just a few days. My skin looks brighter, clearer, and more even. I also notice that my freckles and dark spots are starting to fade. I think this was what my skincare routine was missing. I think this product could be used to help with many types of skin issues and for a wide range of skin types and ages. If you have any doubts you can always consult your doctor.  I definitely recommend this product and I will be repurchasing it for sure.

The Details:
Size: 1oz (30ml)
Cost:$19.89 Shipping if free with Amazon Prime or $3.99+ depending on the shipping option you chose.
Active Ingredients: 
20% Vitamin C
2.5 % Retinol
5% hyaluronic Acid
2 % Salicylic Acid
3.5 % Niacinamide

Importation Information:

  • You should always wear a sunscreen but especially when using this product as it contains Retinol, which can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
  • This product is made with all natural ingredients and is cruelty free!
  • Use 1 pump after cleansing and toning your skin. This product is very potent so a little goes a long way.
  • Allow product to skin into your skin for 5 minutes before continuing with your other skincare routine steps.
Bottom Line:
Would I recommend this product? YES!
 
You can try this product yourself by clicking HERE
I also did a video review of this product on my YouTube channel which you can check out HERE

 

Other places to find me:
Instagram: https://instagram.com/courtney.val/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/courtneywval
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/courtneywval/
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com

 

FTC Disclaimer: I was sent this product for review purposes through BrandBacker. All opinons are 100% honest and my own.


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Healthy Breakfast Muffin Recipe

Good Morning!

I hope everyone’s week is starting off great. Today I want to share a recipe I made while doing my weekly meal prep yesterday. I am really trying to get into the habbit of prepping all of my meals for the week each Sunday. These muffins are a combination of a few different recipes I have seen, including the amazing Tone It Up protein pancake recipe. (find it here) I also got inspiration from Sarah fit (find her recipe here). Below is the final recipe I created. These are paleo, gluten-free, low carb, high protein, and low fat. Yippee!

This makes 4 big muffins or 8 small muffins.

Ingredients:
~2 medium bananas, mashed.
~2 Scoops protein powder of your choosing (I use a plant based one)
~4 tbsp flax seed meal
~4 tsp of cinnamon
~4 egg whites or 3 egg whites and 1 whole egg
~2 tsp of baking powder
~1 1/2 tsp of baking soda
~Pinch of salt
~1 Tbsp of almond milk (you could use any milk you prefer)
~1-2 Tbsp of agave nectar or honey. This depends on how sweet you want them.
~Add in your favorite fruits, nuts, or seeds. In the ones above I used golden raisins and sunflower seeds.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. (176 Celcius)
2. Combine all ingreidents except the agave nectar and fruit/nuts.
3. Mix well.
4. Fold in nuts/fruit.
5. Add agave nectar and mix again.
6. Bake for 35-45 minutes, checking them every 20 or so minutes. When a tooth pick comes out clean you are good to go.

These can be stored for 2-5 days in the fridge. When you are ready to eat them just pop them in the microwave for 10 seconds.

Enjoy!

Other places to connect:
Instagram: https://instagram.com/courtney.val/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/courtneywval
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/TheImperfectpearl
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/courtneywval/
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com

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NEW! 30 Before 30 Challenge: Raw Food & Lifestyle Challenge

Happy Sunday!

I hope you all are getting ready to rock another week. Tomorrow I will be starting a very exciting journey into being the healthiest person I can be. One of my “30 Before 30” challenges is to get myself into the best health possible. So, I created a detailed nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle challenge.

I made a whole video about it which you can see HERE.

Over the past 5 or so years I have overcome a multitude of food and health issues but there are still a few health related things I want to focus on. Specifically, I want to figure out why I continue to get daily headaches/migraines. My doctor has found a prescription that I can take to alleviate my migraines but I just don’t feel that is completely sustainable. What if someday I can’t afford the medicine? What if I start to feel negative side effects? I really want to look closer at my lifestyle and listen to my body to see if there is something I can do without taking medicine to cure my headaches.

I have also been having some outward symptoms that I think point to a need to change my nutrition. I haven’t had acne in years and all of the sudden my face thinks it is 18 again. My hair and nails have also become very dry and brittle. As far as my body and “being in shape” goes I do hope that my challenge will help me create a body I feel good in. I am not trying to lose weight but I think if I treat my body well it will shape itself into a healthy form.

Besides those physical things I want to develop a healthy lifestyle that makes me feel emotional good. I used to suffer from severe depression and I have come such a long way. I feel so much more alive that I ever did but I want to keep moving up and working towards feeling the best I possibly can. A few years ago I wasn’t completely sure I deserved to ever be insanely happy but now I KNOW that I deserve true emotional happiness so I will do whatever I can to achieve that.

One of my favorite personal mottos is “Feel good, preform well.”

Goals for my challenge:

  • Eat fully raw foods until 4pm. I will eat raw fruits and veggies for breakfast and lunch. After 4pm I will have a cooked dinner. 
  • Eat a lean, clean, and green dinner. If you are a Tone It Up girl then you will know this means getting in lean proteins, non-processed foods, and lots of greens. 
  • Drink 2 liters minimum of water/ day. 
  • Limit processed foods and strive to stay away from them completely. 
  • Keep daily journal of foods, how I feel after eating, and recipes/meal ideas.
  • Keep section in journal to document headaches & migraines. Look for triggers. 
  • Set sleep schedule and stick to it. I am aiming for 8-9 hours of sleep each night per a recommendation from my doctor. 
  • Limit or eliminate alcohol intake. I don’t drink much but alcohol can trigger headaches. 
  • Exercise regularly. I want to train for a 1/2 marathon so running will have to become a new friend. I am also focusing on improving my yoga skills. 
  • Oil pulling. I did a whole video about oil pulling which you can see HERE. I found when I did oil pulling my headaches were greatly reduced. I just fell off the wagon so it’s time to hop back on.
  • Start meditation practice. My dad has encouraged me to do this and I want to give it a shot. He says it helps builder a stronger, more focused mind. My goal is start with just 5 minutes. 
I will be documenting this challenge on my Instagram account (courtney.val), on this blog, and also on my YouTube channel. Subscribe or follow at the links below. If you are doing a similar challenge I would love to know and we can support each other! 
Thank you for being here and I hope you have an amazing week!
Courtney

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Misogi Naturals Lather Master Soap Review + GIVEAWAY!

Hello Lovelies!
I have just posted a new video on my YouTube Channel reviewing the bath and body products from Misogi Naturals. This company is all natural, vegan, and eco-friendly. My husband and I have been using the Silk Kimono Lather Master soap for about a month and we are in love. It comes with a special exfoliating pad attached to the soap so you can exfoliate your skin, cleanse your skin, and then create a rich later to shave your legs. (or face, or wherever…) It also leaves a lasting fresh scent that is not too overpowering. The photos below are the 6 available scents. The 4.5 oz soaps retail for $12 each and the accompanying body butters are $18 each. I am doing a giveaway on my YouTube channel where you can enter to win of the the gift sets which includes both the body butter and soap. If you would like to enter head on over to the video HERE
Also I have a coupon code for you all to use to receive %15 off your order. Use code LatherMaster
**Giveaway rules at the bottom of this page**

GIVEAWAY RULES:
~ Must be 18+ or have permission from guardian to give out shipping address.
~Must like Misogi Naturals Facebook page HERE
~Be a subscriber to my YouTube channel. Subscribe HERE
~Give my review video a thumbs-up 
~Share the review video on any social media site and then leave a comment on the video with the link to where you shared the video and also say “enter me”.  You can enter once a day for 2 weeks. 
**You can also enter by leaving your link to where you shared the video on this blog post with the link to the shared video and state “enter me”. 
~Giveaway will run from 11/17/14 until 11/30/14 at 11:59 EST. 
~Once the winner is announced they will be contacted and have 72 hours to respond before another winner is chosen. 
Thanks for joining me and good luck!
Other places to find me:
Email: courtneywval@gmail.com
Instagram: @courtney.val
Twitter: @courtneywval
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Roasted Pumpkin “Mac and Cheese”

Today’s recipe was inspired by my desire to experiment in the kitchen and to not be wasteful of a mini pumpkin sitting in my fridge. This past Sunday my husband and I bought two small pumpkins at a farmers market with the intention of carving them out to use as chili soup bowls. We soon realized the chili would probably taste like pumpkin and we opted for regular bowls. 
To be honest I started this culinary experiment with the idea that I would make pumpkin soup and then changed my mind half way through. 
If you want to try this recipe yourself here is what you will need:
~1 small fresh pumpkin.
~Olive oil
~Water
~Blender
~1 bag of brown rice pasta
~ 1/4 cup of Raw cashews
~Mustard powder
~Chili powder
~Nutritional yeast
~Salt to taste
~Black pepper to taste
~Raw shelled pumpkin seeds to garnish.
**This dish is vegan and gluten free.
*If you have a nut allergy you can simply leave out the cashews and replace it with a little milk.

Steps for preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit. 
2. Hollow out your pumpkin, washing the surface very thoroughly. Remove all seeds from the inside of your pumpkin. 
3.Cut your pumpkin into chunks and place them in an oven-safe dish. NOTE: You do not have to remove the skin from your pumpkin.
4. Pour about 1/4 cup of water over the pumpkin and drizzle a little olive oil over the top. 
5. Roast the pumpkin for 25-30 minutes. You will know the pumpkin in properly roasted when the chunks are soft and tender.  

This is what your pumpkin looks like after it has been roasted. 
6. Put still warm pumpkin into your blender.  
7.Also add about 1 cup of water and 1/4 cup of raw cashews into the blender. 

 8.Blend until smooth. If you need, add more water so everything gets blended well.

 9. Add blended mixture to a sauce pan with the stove temperature set on low to medium-low.
10. Add in 1/4-1/2 cup of nutritional yeast. (depending on your preference)
11. Add in 1 tsp of ground mustard powder.
12. Add in 2-3 tsp of chili powder.
13. Taste the mixture in between adding each of the spices. Add salt and pepper to your desired taste.
14. Cook and drain the brown rice pasta. Add the sauce on top of your pasta and place it in your oven (still set on 350) for 5 minutes. Add shredded cheese on top if you like before putting it in the oven.

 Viola! This is what it will look like. 
15.Sprinkle some raw pumpkin seeds over the top as a garnish. I thought of that after I took this photo. Opps!
You can leave it vegan like this or add shredded cheese on top. You could also add shredded almond cheese on top to still keep it vegan.
I thought it was really tasty so I gave a little sample to my co-worker so she can give me some constructive feedback since this was totally experimental. Let me know if you have ever tried something like this!
Thanks for stopping by!
Other places to find me:
Instagram: courtney.val
Twitter: @courtneywval
YouTube: Courtney Val or www.youtube.comTheImperfectpearl
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One Minute Smoothie: Healthy Hair and Skin

Hola!

This morning I made a delicious smoothie so I thought I would share the recipe with you. I also filmed it and posted the video on my YouTube channel. You can watch the video here:

Recipe:
2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp of coconut oil
2 Tsp of hemp seeds
3-4 Frozen mango chunks or slices
A handful of frozen or fresh spinach
10 oz of  coconut water (you could use almond milk, coconut milk, or regular milk if you like)

Blend it up and enjoy!

Health Benefits Breakdown:

Apple Cider Vinegar: It helps balance your body’s pH levels, promotes a healthy metabolism, and stabilizes blood sugar.

Coconut Oil: It produces lauric acid which can kill bacteria (Acne!) and fight off viruses. It promotes shiny and strong hair. It can even reduce or prevent hair loss.

Coconut Water: This juice is naturally very hydrating and being properly hydrated keeps your hair shiny and skin plump. Staying hydrated is also the number 1 way to prevent premature aging.

Mango: Eating mango can actually unclog your pores and clear up pimples.

Spinach: Greens=glow. It’s that simple. The more greens you eat the more your hair will grow and your skin will glow.

Hemp Hearts: These seeds are high in Omega 3’s and Vitamin E which treat hair and skin conditions.

Thanks for joining me and leave any comments or questions down below.

Also feel free to follow me here:
Instagram: courtney.val
Twitter: @courtneywval

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Review Update: Trader Joe’s Nourish Antioxidant Face Serum

Hello again!

About a month ago I did a review video on my YouTube channel and in that video I reviewed a skincare product from Trader Joe’s. I also told you in that video that I would update you on how it was working after I used it for a bit more time.

In case you didn’t see the video you can watch it here or below:

Now, on to the update FAQ style.

Q:Have you seen an improvement in your skin from using this product?
A: Over the past 1-2 months my skin has improved a lot but I think it is a combination of things. Since I have used this product in place of my primer I have noticed my pores are less clogged but I still get the same primer effect. I think this product has helped smooth my skin and hold in moisture from the daily moisturizer I use on top.

Q: What are the pros for the product?
A: It’s gentle on your skin. It’s full of great, mostly natural ingredients. It helps retain moisture and hydration in the skin. It doubles as a light primer. It is well packaged and I like the sanitary pump. It works great on bare skin or paired with a little powder for a make-up less look.

Q: What are the cons for this products?
A: It’s a bit too thick in my opinion for a serum. I also wish it didn’t have as much dimethicone as it does.

Q: Would you repurchase this product?
A: As of right now I don’t think I will immediately repurchase this product because I want to try similar products from other brands but it is something I would use again down the road.

Q: Would you recommend this product?
A: I would but with a disclaimer that it is not like traditional syrupy serums. If you are looking for a primer with the added benefits of antioxidant ingredients then this is a good product to try.

Q: Is this product worth the cost?
A: At $10 for 1 fluid ounces I definitely think this is worth the price. I have been using it generously for 1-2 months and I really haven’t made a big dent. You are also getting a lot of great ingredients for that $10. (if you’d like a full list of the ingredients just let me know and I’ll type it up.)

Q: Overall impression?
A: Overall I think Trader Joe’s did a great job developing this product. I think it mixes skincare with cosmetics and I like that a lot. Anytime you can accomplish two things with one product it’s a plus. Also, like I said in my video I feel this is a unisex product which is unique. Good job, TJ’s!

As always let me know if you have questions or comments. You can tweet me @imperfectperla, email me at cwlinguistics@gmail, or follow me on Instagram @cbwright.

Have a great day and thanks for being here!

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