Mia Mariu cosmetics review and giveaway

Mia Mariu is a natural health and beauty company based out of Dallas.  Mia Mariu make up is a mineral make up infused with vitamins and anti-oxidants like green tea, to protect skin and prevent breakouts.  The skin care like uses botanicals for a natural and gentle skin transformation. They offer social selling opportunities for women to sell through ecommerce, social media, while offering personal service.

I received a few Mia Mariu mineral make up products and a brush to try out.  From left to right in the picture above I received: Mia Mariu Caramelo loose mineral shadow liner, Mia Mariu Mora loose mineral shadow liner, Mia Mariu Hydrating Stick Gloss in Encanto, and a Mia Mariu Multipurpose eye shadow base & contour brush.

I did a swatch of the 2 shadow liners on the back of my hand hoping it might be a little easier for you to see. Mora is a dark chocolate brown with a hint of plum in it.  Caramelo is a very light beige. On my skin the Caramelo just kind of shows up as a shimmer.  The Caramelo is below the darker Mora color and you can just kind of see the shimmer on my skin.

I really like this make up it’s very light.  With my skin, I love to wear make up but I’m always concerned about breakouts.  It felt natural on my skin and stayed well.  I did a before and after pic with the make up I received.  This first pick is without makeup.  I had just cleansed my skin and applied a tinted moisturizer.

Then I applied the make up I received.  I love how hydrating the stick gloss is.  At first I wasn’t so sure about the color in the tube.  It seemed a bit bright for me.  After applying it though, I rather liked it.

I think the colors really agreed with my skin tone, hair, and eye color.

If you’re looking for a work from home opportunity and to be your own boss, you can sign up to become an Mia Mariu Adviser.  There are 2 different starter kits available.

Mia Mariu is a company that gives back.  They are a proud supporter of the Wounded Warriors Wives, an Operation Home Front that’s dedicated to recognize, inspire, and comfort the woman who sacrifice to care for our county’s wounded warriors.

You can find Mia Mariu on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/miamariu
and on twitter: @Mia_Mariu


1 Luv Saving Money reader will win a hydrating stick gloss, and 2 loose mineral shadow liners in the colors of their choice.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway

***I received the above mentioned/pictured products at no cost in order to complete this review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation for this post.  Any opinions expressed are my own.***

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Ants in the Kitchen, but not anymore thanks to Combat: giveaway

I don’t know about you but it’s been a frustrating year for bugs in our house.  This is the first year that we ever had ants in our kitchen since we moved in over 4 years ago.  It wasn’t a hug amount and they seemed to be concentrated in one area.  I thoroughly went through and cleaned everything thinking there must be some crumbs or a sweet spill somewhere that was attracting them.  When that didn’t help, I got frustrated.  In a surprising coincidence I was offered a chance to review Combat Source Kill Max Ant Gel and Ant Bait.

Most of the ants I noticed were on the left side of my sink, possibly under the toaster, and I noticed they’d disappear between where my counter and stove meet.  I only pull out and clean under my stove about twice a year so I figured there was probably some crumbs and things on the floor between the stove and counter.  I cleaned under there and applied the Combat Source Kill Ant gel that comes in a filled syringe along the base of the cupboard that’s normally against the stove.  I put my stove back into place.  This was also a safer place to put it so there was no accidental contact with the kids.  I put one of the ant bait squares on the counter behind the toaster.  
It’s only been about 5 days but I honestly haven’t noticed an ant in about 3 days.  Before, any given time I went out to the kitchen they were crawling across my counter, cutting board, or escaping between the stove.  
Both the ant bait squares and the ant gel are quick kill formulas.  The ant carries the bait back to their colony and it destroys their entire colony.  Both versions also work on ants outside your home.  Combat also has other product for other pests including cockroaches.  Check out the site to see what they offer and where you can buy their products: http://www.combatbugs.com/
Combat is having a sweepstakes on their site right now too.  Enter to win $1000 for your back yard bug free bash. You can enter here: http://insiders.purex.com/combat-bfbb?id=91


Combat is going to give 1 LuvSavingMoney readers their own 
Combat Source Kill Max kit like I received
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a Rafflecopter giveaway

***I received the above mentioned Combat products as part of the Purex Insiders program.  I did not receive any monetary compensation for this post. Any opinions expressed are my own.***

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AVEENO Pure Renewal Dry Shampoo review and sweepstakes announcement

I love being an AVEENO ambassador.  It’s great to be working with a company that’s researching and bringing positive programs to the community like the “Be an Active Natural” program, and awarding grants to people who are making a difference.

I mentioned in a previous AVEENO post that AVEENO recently introduced more new products to their line up.  One of which is the AVEENO Pure Renewal dry shampoo.

This dry shampoo uses seaweed extract which balances and revives hair.  It removes excess oil and impurities from your hair in between washes, while also adding volume to your hair.  It’s also sulfate free.  It was developed by AVEENO’s team of scientists and celebrity hair stylist, Patrick Melville.
Within the last year or so I discovered the world of dry shampoos and it changed my beauty routine.  My problem is this, If I don’t shampoo and condition every day my hair gets really oily.  But if I do shampoo every day my scalp gets dry and itchy. I hated the oily limp hair when I didn’t shampoo plus it seemed to encourage breakouts on my skin along the hair line.  Dry shampoos are a great way for me to keep my hair looking fresh and clean without stressing out my scalp. Now I shampoo every other day and use dry shampoo in between those days.  
I took a picture of one of my days with no shampoo.  You can see how my hair is a bit oily and starts sticking together
The AVEENO Pure Renewal dry shampoo has a great fresh scent to it.  Kinda smells like I just got out of the shower. Just shake the can and spray the dry shampoo onto your hair.  I make sure to spray along my part and lift up a few sections of hair and spray there too.  When it first goes on it’s kind of a white powdery look.  
You need to brush the shampoo through your hair.  I also take and work my fingers through it to kind of work the dry shampoo into my hair.  
I start working it through and you can see how it starts to absorb.  You can also see how my hair starts to separate and I don’t have the lumped strands like I did in the first picture.  I also add a little more lift to my hair.  For me it takes a little working and brushing to get it in so my hair isn’t powdery looking anymore.  This great feeling in my hair lasts throughout the day.  
This is a useful product to have on hand for anyone that has oily hair like mine or if  your hair just need some refreshing in between shampoos.

Also AVEENO wanted me to let you know to keep your eyes peeled for the Aug. 27 issue of People Magazine (available on stands Aug. 17).  In that issue there will be a page about the new AVEENO sweepstakes.  1 winner will win a trip for 2 to NYC for a spa weekend.  1500 others will win a full size AVEENO Pure Renewal dry shampoo (yes the one I reviewed here).  You’ll be able to enter the sweepstakes starting Aug. 17 here: http://www.summerrenewal.com/
That’s not all AVEENO has a nice prize pack to give to one LuvSavingMoney.info reader too!

AVEENO is going to give one LuvSavingMoney readers a Pure Renewal Prize pack that includes:
Pure Renewal Shampoo
Pure Renewal Conditioner
Pure Renewal 2in1 Shampoo/Conditioner
Pure Renewal Dry Shampoo


a Rafflecopter giveaway

***As an AVEENO ambassador I periodically receive products from AVEENO at no cost.  I did not receive any monetary compensation for this post.  Any opinions expressed are my own.***

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Safees Reflectors, great idea for Back to School: Review and Giveaway

I’ve read about how it’s a good idea to wear reflectors, reflective clothing, or at least light colored clothing when your outside, especially when it’s starting to get dark.  Dark clothing and non-reflective clothing can be very hard to see for drivers.  Here’s a scary statistic, did you know that over 2/3 of pedestrian fatalities occur  when it’s either dark or even dark with street lights on.

Did you also know that in Scandinavian countries they have the best traffic safety records in the world?! Every school child has to wear one and their traffic fatalities involving children are the lowest in the world according to WHO Global Status report on road safety.

A wonderful company called Safees is a great solution to this problem.  Safees are hard prism reflectors that can easily be attached with a clip to clothing, book bags, stroller, purses, jackets, costumes, etc.  They can be worn by both adults and children and come in lots of fun designs.  They meet CE and Lloyds certification and adhere to ISO standards.  They also meet very high EU standards of environmental consideration, in other words no waste is produced in the manufacturing and Safees are 100% recyclable.

Here is a short video on how Safees can protect you and your children at night

 Safees make you 500% more visible to drivers at night.  When I opened my review samples, even without actually trying them out in the environment I could see that they were highly reflective with an irridecent shimmer to each one.  My oldest son volunteered to try them out for the review.  I first had him stand in the backyard roughly 10 feet away at first.  I attached one Safees to the back of his shirt and one Safees to the front.  Here is the first picture:

This Safees was the clear horse design.  I then had him go up about 30 feet into the yard and took a picture of the one on his back.

You can see that it’s hard to see my son in this picture but the blue snowflake Safee is bright and easy to spot.  I was impressed with how much it reflected and was visible even from 30 feet away.  There are many different colors and styles to fit just about anyone.

Safees website also has a helpful page with statistics and links to traffic awareness and traffic safety sites for tips on how to keep your children safe at night: http://www.safees.com/pages/stay-safe-heres-how

At a cost of only $6 each I think there would be a smart idea during your back to school purchases.  Clip one to your child’s backpack or jacket.  It won’t be long until we start losing daylight and only a few months until trick or treat.  Safees is also offering a coupon to save 15% off your order of Safees product with code: Safeesbacktoschool2012

You can also find Safee on twitter @Safeesreflector 


1 Luv Saving Money reader will win 5 Safees reflectors
US only

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***I received 3 Safees at no cost in order to complete a review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation for this post.  Any opinions expressed are my own.***

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Deja Vu of Love by Carol Cadoo book review and giveaway

I love a good book.  Something I can nestle down just before bed and read a few chapters.  Maybe read it on my Kindle while sitting at the boys’ practices for 2 hours.  Generally I can tell a few chapters in whether a book is for me or not . Up to about 2 years ago, my book genre taste was pretty narrow.  A good super natural thriller, or a good psycho-thriller was about it.  Maybe a sci-fi if I wanted something different.  I rarely ever ventured to other genres, especially romance.  I thought they were all predictable and utterly boring.  Well Carol Cadoo just changed my mind on that one.

With a little bit of hesitation I agreed to do this book review on her new book “Deja Vu of Love“.  And I’ll be honest, I thought I was right at first.  The book started off with the main character having a hard life as a kid.  My first thought was “oh boy, like I didn’t see that coming”.  Though it wasn’t a long drawn out description, more of a background info that I found out I would need later. BUT, I can say that after the first chapter I was totally wrong about the whole book.  I could hardly put the book down once I started reading it.  I would categorize this as a modern day romance combined with a little bit of a thriller aspect.  

The had so many emotions toward the main character Jazz. A smart, strong, female character.  I felt so many emotions towards her in the book from “Way to go Jazz” to “What are you doing you goofball!?” The way Carol describes each character in her book really gives you a good picture of them. I found this book heart-warming at times, a good pyscho-thriller at another point, and of course a good modern day romance in the end.  

Most of the characters are so loveable. The ones that aren’t..well..they’re supposed to be that way.  I have to say, though a secondary character, Patrick was one of my faves in the book.  Good for some comic relief and heartwarming moments. Perhaps one of my favorite parts of the book is when Jazz first meets Patrick.  The scene she paints is both sad and funny at the same time.

Carol Cadoo was kind enough to send over some standard interview Q & A she had done.  I posted some of my favorites here:

Who is your favorite character and why?
 I love Patrick he is funny and witty. A little irreverent that quality I am totally attracted too. I think Patrick and Jazz have simpatico together I like the quality of their relationship as well as their interaction

What was your day job?
Well as most artist I have been in a variety of professions. I have worked as an actress, director, choreographer, wedding planner and waitress. Not to mention a plethora of other short lived careers. I spent the last ten years working as a wedding planner which was a huge research project for human nature.

Do you do anything else besides write and if so what is it? 
Yes I was an actress, director and choreographer for many years, until I shattered my kneecap. From that point on I became a very successful wedding planner, but my true passion is writing, it completes me.

Name one character in your story that is based on a real person and tell us who it is and how they are similar. Wow well let’s see Patrick is based loosely on my best friend and writing partner of thirty years and it’s him because he always gave me unconditional love as Patrick gives Jazz. We are taking a little break in our friendship at this point. Hope it all resolves.

One thing Carol mentioned to me that I respected is that she is a green writer.  Her book is only available in ecopy.   When you get Carol’s Deja Vu of Love you can also get a personal digital autograph of the cover using Kindlegraph which is a service she introduced to me.

The book will be available August 1 on Amazon.

Carol also has another book down the pike called “Inheritance of Love” Afte reading Deja Vu of Love you can bet I”ll be reading that one when it’s available too!


5 Luv Saving Money readers will win their own e-copy of
Deja Vu of Love with the option 
of the digital autograph via Kindlegraph
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a Rafflecopter giveaway

***I received an advanced ecopy at no cost in order to complete this review.  Any opinions expressed are my own.  Interview questions were taken from standard interview questions shared with me from Carol Cadoo. ***

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