Mother’s Day Gifts: Herbal Dynamics Beauty Gift Sets

We have reached the end of the pre Mother’s day gift guide posts. While there are many more things available than what I have listed, I have listed a few that caught my eye as I was doing my own shopping. And for my final one I am listing Herbal Dynamic Beauty and their gift sets.

Oh before I forget they have a 25% off code: MOTHER25. You can use that on the gift sets or on regular purchases.

Last year I tried the Herbal Beauty Cacao and Chamomile Clearing Mask and fell in love. They make other really great products, but oh that mask…

I know this is about gift sets, but really I would be remiss if I did not suggest that mask as a possible gift idea. It is just such a fantastic mask to have in your skincare arsenal. It feels good on the skin and when you use it, you skin feels fantastic. However the real magic comes later. the mask works to draw out deeply clogged pores and bring them to the surface so you can clear them out. This means the day following the mask use you end up with more break outs that need to be cleared away. I like to use this a week before I need my skin to look it’s best for an event. I’ll take a weekend home, use it on a Friday afternoon and spend the weekend clearing away what gets drawn to the surface and then hit the following week with extra fabulous skin.

While it is an amazing gift, there are skin care gift sets for mothers day as well. One of my favorites is the set of Hydrating Recovery essentials. Usually $74 it is currently on sale for $54, It includes: YOUTH REFRESH® HYDRATING STRAWBERRY ANTIOXIDANT CLEANSER, CLEAN & CALM® COOLING CUCUMBER EYE CREAM, and YOUTH REFRESH® HYALURONIC ACID & OAT OVERNIGHT RECOVERY MASK.

I would purchase this solely for the Hyaluronic Acid and Oat Overnight mask.  No shade to the other products (as I haven’t tried them) but that overnight mask is fantastic. I applied it over night and the next morning my skin was hydrated and many of my fine lines flitted away in the night. Admittedly you have to keep using it or the wicked little lines return, but it was a nice way to wake up.

The second set I would look into is the Anti Aging Heroes set. I know, getting someone something called anti-aging as a gift might send the wrong message but these are really nice products. Maybe you could just term it The fabulous skin set instead if you choose to pick this one up. Usually it retails for $66 but is now on sale for $55. It includes the YOUTH REFRESH® HYDRATING HYALURONIC ACID SERUM, YOUTH REFRESH® PRICKLY PEAR ANTIOXIDANT DAILY FACE MOISTURIZER, and the VIVID REVIVAL® VITAMIN K CONTOURING EYE CREAM. Of these three the only one I have tried is the Hyaluronic Acid serum. It is something I have purchased at least twice since I first tried it. It is a fabulous addition to any skincare line.

Whether you are looking for sets or singular items, Herbal Dynamics beauty is a great place to check out for Mother’s day gifts. And don’t forget, you can get 25% off with the code MOTHER25. Happy shopping.

Herbal Dynamics Beauty

Mother’s Day Gifts: Botanical Interests Gifts for the Garden

As this is the season where gardening sort of takes over my life for a while, I know you have heard me mentioning my planting. Gardening is a family passion shared by generations of my family. Growing up we moved around a lot. Some of the places we lived were houses and had spaces for gardens and others were apartments. All of the apartments had window boxes and hanging plants in any window that could catch the sun. My grandparents sacrificed part of their back porch to build on a green house. So in my family plants and gardening supplies are always good gift ideas and this year Botanical Interests has several that are well worth taking a look at.

The first that caught my eye is the Microgreens collection. Priced at only $18.50 this collection includes: Microgreens Ciao Bella Basil Blend Organic, Microgreens Jazzy Mix, Microgreens Mellow Blend Organic, Microgreens Sunflower Organic, Microgreens Upland Cress. Whether you grow plants just to have something green and growing in your space or if you use them for cooking, this is a very good collection to have on hand and a great gift. As I often find it difficult to find cress at my local grocery store, this is one that I would defiantly look at picking up. At the moment the Ciao Bella Basil is actually planted out in my garden. It is a good grower in both the garden and in containers.

Speaking of containers…

Botanical interests has a gift set specifically for container gardening. It is unsurprisingly called the Container Vegetable collection (retail $21). It includes: Bean Bush Contender Organic, Carrot Tonda di Parigi, Cucumber Spacemaster 80, Kale Dwarf Blue Curled, Lettuce Romaine Little Gem Organic, Onion Bunching/Scallion Tokyo Long White, Pepper Sweet California Wonder, Spinach Lavewa, Squash Summer Emerald Delight, Tomato Cherry Falls. Last year we grew the little Gem Romain and I have to say I felt very fancy when making my salads. It is small enough that each head is a single serving so you can make some restaurant-y looking plated really easily. Which I know sounds a little bit extra but I sometimes find that when trying to stick to my diet, if i make the plates look a little prettier then i feel like I am getting something extra special which keeps me from adding on calories later to ‘make up’ for the salad heavy dinner. the bunching scallions we grew the summer before last (I forgot to re order last year) and they were very drought tolerant as well as delicious. Both are in the garden this year again.

And for those who have mothers who just aren’t interested in herbs or vegetables, they have several gift sets for you as well. One of my favorites is the Florist Cutting Flowers collection. (retail $22). After all why simply buy one bouquet when you can make up your own all summer long (and often for years to come). This collection includes: (A) Amaranth Love-Lies-Bleeding Coral Fountain, (A) Ammi Dara, (A) Aster, China Aster Blend, (P) Celosia Pampas Plume Blend, (P) Craspedia Drumstick Flower, (P) Dahlia Decorative Double Blend, (A) Orlaya White Lace, (A) Sunflower Goldy Honey Bear, and (A) Zinnia Cut and Come Again (A=Annual P=Perennial Pt=Tender Perennial). where I live the Love-lies-bleeding in various shades seems to be really popular. Once it gets going you can walk through the neighborhood and see it decorating a number of back fences and garden gates. It is absolutely gorgeous in the garden and would look spectacular in a vase, especially in a mix with other cut flowers.

Botanical interests is a seed/garden company I have always had really good luck with. Their seeds have always reliably sprouted and I usually like what becomes of the plants. Many of the seeds I repurchase annually. While these are three of my favorites, they have many more collections for mothers day including container and garden plants, herb and vegetable collections and a host of butterfly and bee encouraging collections. If like my mother, yours enjoys gardening, this is definitely a list to check into. The link below will take you to their full mother’s day collection. Happy shopping.

Mothers Day Gift Collection from Botanical Interests.

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas: Molton Brown Gift Sets

I’ll admit, I have a weakness for Molton Brown Bath Products. I absolutely adore their shower gels and the wide array of fragrances available. I love that there is a scent for everyone too. Want something fresh and Fruity? Try Rhubarb and Rose. It’s floral that is well balanced with a bit of a tart note that keeps it fresh and not to heavily floral. Looking for something costal? Try out the Costal Cypress and Sea fennel. It has the fresh scent I always think of when I think of the sea side. Looking for something a little bit spicy? Then Pink Pepper may just be for you.

And those are just a few of the scents. Every time I am on the site I find new scents that i just want to try. The descriptions draw me in just as much as perfume descriptions do and I often find myself wanting to try them all. (which tends to be why I order the sampler set for myself during Black Friday. It’s my reward for having gotten all of my gift shopping completed).

And as my Mother introduced me to the brand, you know I couldn’t let a mother’s day pass without including something from Molton Brown on the list.

This year there are two items I think are well worth picking up. The first is the Floral and Fruity shower Gel Gift Set. It includes: 3 x 10fl oz in -Delicious Rhubarb & Rose Bath & Shower Gel, Jasmine & Sun Rose Bath & Shower Gel and Orange & Bergamot Bath & Shower Gel.

I love the formula of the Molton Brown Shower Gel. It has a really rich lather that rinses off cleanly without leaving any filmy residue on the skin. In addition,. while the scent in the shower is intense and sort of fills your shower with utterly delicious scents, once you towel off the sent fades back to barely a whisper against your skin. It was one of the things I was concerned about when i first used it. The scent in the shower was kind of strong so I assumed it would mix and mingle with every other scent I attempted to put on. It doesn’t. It is a soft scent of clean skin and is very light. I have to say, I chose this because these scants are exactly the ones my mother likes. I know she loves the Rose and Rhubarb, but I suspect that is only because she has never tried the Orange and Bergamot.

You know me, I am not a bergamot fan, in fact i think I might be slightly allergic to it. My mother on the other hand loves it. I am pretty sure that if she could submerge herself in essence of Bergamot while sipping Earl gray tea she would. So I know this set would be a big hit for her.

The second item that tops my charts is the Worldly Traveler Drawstring Travel Pouch. I think what draws me to it is that it is a sampler kit, which you know i love. And the scent’s draw me to it. It includes: Vetiver & Grapefruit Bath & Shower Gel 3.3fl oz, Coastal Cypress & Sea Fennel Bath & Shower Gel 3.3fl oz, Re-charge Black Pepper Bath & Shower Gel 3.3fl oz, Geranium Nefertum Bath & Shower Gel 3.3fl oz, Tobacco Absolute Bath & Shower Gel 3.3fl oz, Purifying Shampoo With Indian Cress 3.3fl oz, Molton Brown Drawstring Travel Pouch

I know this is much more of a me gift than it is for my mom, because these are scents I tend to gravitate towards. But I thought I would mention it in case like me, your mother isn’t always drawn to florals.

I really like the wide array of products and gift sets that are on the Mother’s Day list for Molton Brown. There are the shower gel options or hand care options. There are even perfume options. And of course sets that include all three (Hand lotion, shower gel and perfume). And while there are a lot of floral options the scents are varied so you can indulge in just the right one for your mother.

Molton Brown (US)

Mother’s Day: igourmet gift boxes

Ah mother’s day is fast approaching. Have you picked up a present yet? well if you are still looking for that perfect something, igourmet has some wonderful gift baskets this year. This link will take you to the full Mother’s day line up of gift baskets and specialty products. Personally, there are two that stand out for my list. The first is the Gift of Tea and Honey Gift basket.

Given some of the things I’ve mentioned about my mother this shouldn’t be much of a surprise. She is a huge fan of tea and long ago gave up most sweeteners. Except for honey.

Honey is put into her tea, drizzled on the oatmeal and added in all sorts of other places. In her pantry she has an entire shelf of honeys. I think that part of that is because of potential stick factor. she lined that shelf with easily wipeable waterproof liner and only puts honey on the shelf even if she only has one jar. Usually she has about three going at a time but there are always the additional ones she just can’t rest. In this gift basket there are several that look simply fantastic.

This tea gift contains two wonderful honeys and three distinctive teas to warm and soothe the body and soul.

  • Raw Italian Honey by Mitica: Award-winning beekeepers, Fabrizio and Pierpaolo Cazzola of Apicoltura Cazzola have been producing honey at Altedo in the province of Bolognia in Emilia-Romagna for over 20 years. (4.23 oz)
  • Beekeeper’s Daughter Honey: Beekeeper’s Daughter travels up and down the east coast, following the blossoms as the seasons change. Her honey is amber in color and has a sweet, floral flavor. (2 oz)
  • Honey Spoon: This 18/10 stainless steel honey spoon balances on the edge of a honey jar, tea cup, or mug.
  • Japanese Green Tea: Made from deeply steamed tea leaves that are grown in Japan’s premier tea region, located in the foothills of Mt. Fuji. (16 bags)
  • Pickwick’s Flavored Black Tea: A staple of Holland’s cafes and breakfast shops, Pickwick’s Flavored Black Tea turns a traditional taste into something truly fresh. (20 bags)
  • Highland Blend Black British Tea: This brisk black tea is a great way to begin your day, or as an accompaniment to a full British breakfast. (25 bags)
  • Bewley’s Pure White Tea with Cranberry: Since Charles Bewley first imported tea in 1835, Bewley’s of Dublin, Ireland, have been carefully selecting leaves from the world’s finest tea gardens to achieve impeccable quality and flavor. (25 bags)
  • Effie’s Tea Biscuits: These biscuit are the perfect complement to a cup of tea at any time of day. (7.2 oz)
  • Gift Presentation: Hand assembled in a black gift crate, this basket is finished with an elegant ribbon.

The second gift basket that caught my eye did so not only because I know my mother would adore every item in it, but because on Mother’s day there are always loads of people in and out of the house. While it would make a nice gift to give, it will also make a nice assortment to have on hand for when others drift in and out. This is the Mother’s day Grazing board.

Show all the moms in your life just how much they mean to you with this elegant selection of meats, cheeses, and accompaniments. There’s something for everyone, with nibbles that range from savory and spicy to downright sweet. It arrives ready to display and serve, complete with a slate cheese board. Just add Mom. 

Brooklyn Slate Cheese Board – This all-natural slate is sourced from Brooklyn Slate Co.’s family quarry in upstate New York. It’s dishwasher safe, comes with anti-slip padded feet, and features a rustic natural edge. 

Greek Fig Salami with Pistachio & Cinnamon by Hellenic Farms – Hellenic Farms is a woman-owned business that specializes in classic Greek flavors and inventive new products. This salami is made with all-natural Greek figs, cinnamon, and pistachio for a taste that’s sweet, nutty,and perfect with salty or creamy cheeses. 

Snowdonia Cheese Company Truckle – This North Wales cheese company creates beautiful, award-winning cheeses that add both flavor and fashion to your cheese board. Fun fact: The cylindrical shape of the cheese is called a truckle!

Mt. Vikos Taverna Meze – These Greek appetizers are loaded with the briny, salty, and savory flavors of the Mediterranean. They are perfect spread on small crunchy toasts or eaten by the spoonful. Close your eyes and you might hear the gentle waves of the Aegean as you bite into this little piece of Greece. 

Les Folies Fromage Fruit Spread for Cheese – This quartet of French fruit spreads is made by Guillaume et Lesgards in the heart of the French Pyrenees mountains. Each spread is infused with specific fruits and spices that are specially designed to go with a different cheeses for a cheese plate that’s bound to impress. 

Castelvetrano Olives by Bono – Established in 1934 as an olive oil company, Bono brings these fruity green olives straight from Sicily to you. They are firm, juicy, and the ideal olive to round out your cocktail hour. 

Tour de Paris Brie Wedge by Henri Hutin – The main man when it comes to cheese, Henri Hutin, founded his cheese-making (and now exporting) company in 1922. This brie is creamy and soft, with sweet and nutty hints that are complemented by fruity jam and jelly.

Petits Poivrons (Sweety Drop Peppers) by Trois Petits Cochons – These picture-perfect teardrops were originally cultivated in the Peruvian Highlands. They are a hybrid of jalapeno and cherry peppers and are sweet, spicy, and pleasantly tart. 

Citterio Prosciutto & Mozzarella Cheese Rollino – Citterio is an Italian, family-owned company founded in 1878. These days, the prosciutto is dry-air aged in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains before it’s wrapped around fresh, creamy mozzarella cheese. The perfect bite. 

Spanish Cocktail Snack Mix by Mitica – Transport your appetizer hour to the streets of Barcelona with this traditional Spanish snack mix filled with nuts and crunchy legumes. 

Taralli Crackers by Mitica – This classic Puglian snack mix takes your standard cracker game to the next level. These crunchy crisps are made with extra virgin olive oil and white wine. They’re perfect with dips, cheeses, or just as is. 

Organic Pitted Medjool Date Snack Pack by Joolies – Joolies runs an organic date farm in California and delivers the softest, sweetest dates that nature can offer.  Dates are naturally packed with nutrients like potassium and are delicious with creamy or sharp cheeses. 

Mini Toasts by Les Petits Cochons – You say cheese, we hear crackers. These crackers are extra crispy and thick enough so they won’t break when you swirl them into creamy brie or sticky fruit spreads. 

This sort of gift basket is not only great for a gift as itself, but as a gift that means any drifting company can be taken care of without Mom having to worry about a think. Personally these are the two I would purchases for my mother, but thee is a long list of items availale, from the large gift boxes to a single bottle of Orange Blossom Honey or an elephant tea canister of English breakfast tea.

Sometimes it is nice to simply pick up something that can be shared and enjoyed. It lets you celebrate the day together and not worry about having items to offer those who will drop by. Plus in my family the Mother’s day meal is almost always picnic like. The weather has turned warm and the local park near my mother’s house had picnic tables placed by the lakeside. \

Providing there is no rain, foods will be loaded into picnic baskets and taken over. Especially since it is an out door space that allows for plenty of social distancing while gathering. I’ve got my fingers crossed for good weather.



Mother’s Day: Chi Mother’s Day Bundles

Let’s face it, hair is often abused in the name of style. It is dried, curled, flattened, twisted and tied up. It is used and abused and often needs just a little TLC. Often called the crowning gory it sometimes needs a little help to shine.

This Mother’s day Chi has you covered. They have bundles that will have your mother’s (or yours) tresses looking tip top for spring. And you can even get 25% off with the code CHIMOM. While they have several available here are my two favorites.

The first of these bundles is the Chi Infra-Thermal Care Kit bundled with the Original Digital Ceramic Hair Styling Iron in Ruby red. I actually picked up this Infra Thermal Care Kit during the black Friday sales. It includes the CHI Infra Treatment 6 fl. oz., CHI Silk Infusion 6 fl. oz., and the CHI Infra Shampoo 6 fl. oz.

The shampoo not only lathered nicely and cleans the hair without tripping but it removed a lot of build up other products left on my hair. The Infra Treatment was the most amazing conditioner and gave my hair body and shine. Then there is the silk infusion.

I routinely buy the silk infusion on it’s own. A little drop put on your hands and added to wert hair is fantastic. it made my hair feel like silk. There were no tangles, no snags and it just made my hair look and feel amazing. And when the central heating caused my hair to be a little dry over the winter I just put a tiny bit on my hands and ran my hands over the top of my hair and it smoothed down frizz and fly aways.

This set comes with the Original Digital Ceramic hair styling Iron in Ruby red. This is a really good flat iron. It was large enough for me to use with long hair. I could use it both to flatten and curl my hair and the digital read let me know that I wasn’t getting too hot and risking frying my hair. As I am not always the best gauge of that I really appreciated the digital numbers. they were easy to read and really helped keep me in check.

I actually lost this flat iron because it was packed in luggage that got lost. I was more upset about it than the clothes in the suitcase actually. I’ve been trying other tools lately and missing it more and more to be honest. I am debating between reordering it and ordering the Chi Spin and Curl in Rose Gold.

I have never used the Chi Spin and Curl but it just looks like it would be absolutely fantastic fun to try out. I just find it mesmerizing. If I do end up picking it up I will most certainly review it for you. And actually this might be the time.

The Chi Spin and Curl in Rose Gold is bundled with the Biosilk Irresistible Trio for this second Mother’s Day bundle. The Trio kit includes: 1 BioSilk Silk Therapy Irresistible Original 5.64 fl. oz., 1 BioSilk Silk Therapy Irresistible Shampoo 7 fl. oz., and1 BioSilk Silk Therapy Irresistible Conditioner 7 fl. oz.

I have used the Biosilk Shampoo and conditioner and really enjoyed them. I have not tried the therapy but it is described as having a ‘Jasmine & Honey Scent is a weightless leave-in silk replenishing and reconstructing treatment that helps repair, smooth and protect all hair types.’

And really that sounds pretty good to me. While I haven’t tried the Biosilk treatment, I have used the other two items in the bundle and several other Biosilk products over the years and my hair has always loved them. It is a very good line of hair care products. This Jasmine and Honey scent is light but not overpowering. The honey actually balances the floral so neither is overpowering. The scent is strongest in the shower, but as your hair dries the scent fades to a very light barely there scent.

This mother’s day if you are looking for hair care themed bundles , these might be two that you want to look into. As for me, in addition to gift giving it might be time for me to decide if I want to replace my super fabulous Chi Flat iron or if I want to try out the Spin and Curl. Decisions decisions…



Mother’s Day Gifts: The Art of Tea Sampler Set

Today we are continuing with our Mother’s day (or any holiday really) gift ideas but we are taking a bit of a break from bath, body and skin care products. Admittedly this Art of Tea Sampler set is still in the realm of self care.

Growing up my mother was always an early riser. She would get up before anyone else simply so she could brew a cup of tea and sit out on the back porch. There she would sit composing her thoughts, planning her day and enjoying the morning before everyone else was up and demanding her attention. She claimed that having that small time to herself helped prepared her for the day and when she missed it the entire day felt rushed and off balanced.

While she would switch to Earl Gray when we all sat down to breakfast (and for her tea needs throughout the day) the morning cup was varied and she liked to experiment with all different varieties.

This is why one of the items on my list of potential gifts is The Art of Tea’s Sampler pack. They have a six and a nine pack version. The teas come in a beautifully rich, leatherette box with an assortment of delicious teas packaged in eco-friendly teabag sachets.

the individual sampler pack

This set includes 6 teabags of each of the following popular teas and tisanes*: English Breakfast, Green Pomegranate, Mint Green Tea, Earl Grey Crème, Happy, Orchid Oolong, Dark Chocolate Peppermint, Egyptian Chamomile, Sencha Green.

I’ve purchased individual packages of the Earl Gray Creme and the Orchid Oolong for her and she has loved them both so I think this would be an excellent selection for her, or any tea lover to try out.

the matcha set

They actually have many fantastic looking gift sets for tea lovers, including a tea of the month club. The Art of Tea has a small sampler box if you are uncertain how well some of the teas might be received. Taste can be very subjective. My mother has a group of friends who all get together for tea and if there is something she isn’t fond of, she puts it into the trade pile so she and her friends can switch and swap. I did once get the Individual sampler box do see if these sorts of teas were the sort she liked. It contains one sachet of the different teas in the sampler box ($20). She loved it so I now just periodically pick up a bag that I think she will like from The Art of Tea’s website.

They have a wide array of tea themed products from mugs and filter bags to ceremonial matcha sets and canister sets along with a wide array of sampler sets so that you can pick up just the right product for your favorite tea lover. You can check out their gift sets here but don’t forget to visit their home page to see what seasonal and limited time treats they have available. If your mother, or anyone in your life loves tea, this is a great site to bookmark and return to through out the year.

Mothers Day – Zents Gift Sets

Best Sellers Gift Set

Hello my darlings. Mother’s day is one of those days designed for pampering. It is easy to fall into the trap of getting the same gift year after year, so from now until the end of the month I am going to be posting a few ideas to get you inspired and thinking about a few things I’ve found. If you are thinking about an at home spa experience, Zents is a great brand to look into and right now they have a new Best Seller’s Gift set available.

Set contains: ORE EAU DE TOILETTE (Gentle Uplifting Aroma, 1.69 oz / 50 ml0, EARTH LOTION (Shea Butter Lotion, 6 fl oz / 180 ml), MANDARIN SHAMPOO (Balancing Shampoo, 10 fl oz / 300 ml and SUN BATH TRUFFLE (set includes 2 truffles – Silky Soft Body Treat, 2 oz / 57 g each)

I was first introduced to Zents through their Bath Truffles. My Aunt went to a Spa featuring them and was so impressed she picked up products for everyone. I think i found three of the Bath Truffles in my Christmas stocking that year. And it is easy to see why she liked them. they are among my favorite and the ones that i compare other bath products to. In addition to the Shea Butter softening, they have the Epsom salts that soothe away muscle aches. They are both luxurious and excellent after a strenuous work out.

I am not surprised to see two of them in the Best Seller’s gift basket. In fact I would be shocked if they weren’t there to be honest. I would also be shocked if the Mandarin Balancing Shampoo was not in the basket. I tried this (along with the Water Conditioner) and absolutely loved it. You can read my full review here. I was amazed at how little product I needed to make my hair clean and fabulous. The scent is lightly orange (as the name Mandarin implies) but it is a gentle citrus scent that fades as the bubbles wash down the drain. The soft scents are something that Zents is known for. All of their products are designed for people who are sensitive to scent so they tend towards the lighter side.

One of their Eau De Toiletes, Ore is in the Gift set as well. I sampled the Ore scent when I worked my way through Eau De Toilette Samples collection. I highly recommend that to anyone who wants to try out their scents. In the case of Zents it is extra informative as they feature collections of the same scent.

I have not tried out their earth body cream, but did love their earth scent. While I think this Gift Set is a lovely option for mothers day Zents offers a variety of Gift Sets and Duos that would also make spectacular gifts. This link will take you to their selection. There is a little something for just about everyone.

While the Best Sellers Gift set provides a variety of scents it is very easy to choose the one you love and go from there. Last year I sent a set of the Petal Bath Truffles to my mother for her Birthday and she absolutely adored them. Regardless of what you choose, you can’t go wrong with the Zent’s products. They are pampering and luxurious. It is a great way to get a spa feel at home.

And if you use the code ZENTSMOM you can even get 20% off your purchase.

Use code ZENTMOM for 20% off site-wide! Shop now!

Mother’s Day Gifts: Missha Time Revolution 5x Best Sellers Set

It is time to begin the hunt for the best Mother’s day presents. From now until April 30th I will be posting about various Mother’s day gifts for those of you looking to shop (for your mother, yourself or a mother-like figure in your life). Hopefully it will provide you some inspiration as you look for the perfect gift.

Growing up my mother always claimed that for Mother’s day she just wanted a nice quiet relaxing day.  So we concentrated on home spa like gifts, as we got older the gifts branched out of the drug store bubble bath into more luxurious pampering and included both spa like bath elements and skincare.   There was also the occasional delicate snack and or sweet (chocolate covered strawberries anyone?).  In general though I tend to go for gift boxes and as we roll towards the end of April and into May I’m going to bring up some of my favorites and hopefully help inspire your gift giving this Mother’s day.

Today we are going to start with the Missha Time Revolution 5x Best Sellers Set. Usually this set retails for $106.00 however they have a Mother’s Day sale going on and you can pick it up for $42.40.  Which is 60% off (for those of you who don’t want to do the math).  

In this gift basket is a full sized version of the Missha Time Revolution The First Essence 5x.  This Essence alone retails for $54 (and is so worth it.).  This link will take you to my first use post of the Time Revolution The First Essence 5X. I just finished the second week of the full trial and I absolutely adore this essence.  It has almost no scent to it and feels fresh and clean on the skin. I will be using every last drop of this essence. 

There is also an opening up feeling when the essence touches the skin, which is perfect as the main point of the essence is to open up the skin so that more of your skincare products can be more readily absorbed.  I also have to say my skin has been looking pretty good since I started using this essence and feeling even better. It is really easy to see why this is a best seller. 

Especially going into the summer months.  It not only opens the skin but it hydrates as well and anything that can help me lock moisture into my skin when I start to spend more and more time outside in the sun is a big win in my book.  And since I learned my gardening skills from my mother, who will also be spending most of the summer in her garden, this is a winner.

Of course it isn’t the only item in the gift basket. If it were it wouldn’t really be a gift set, it would just be a single product.  Which would be fine, I would be thrilled with just the essence as the gift, however it is a set.

The set includes Time Revolution The First Essence 5X (150 ml and 30 ml) so you get the full sized version and the travel sixed one which I didn’t realize they had a travel sized version and will be looking into that for next years’ stocking stuffers for my skin care minded family members now that I do. It also includes the Time Revolution Night Repair Ampoule 5X (50 ml and 10 ml), Time Revolution Night Repair Ampoule Cream 5X (10 ml).  That’s five separate products.  And it is currently on sale for less than the cost of just the First Essence. 

I’ve tried several products from the Time Revolution line and ended up loving each and every one of them.  And with each product it is easy to see why Missha is a trusted Korean Skincare Brand.  If you are looking for a skincare related Mother’s Day present, I think this would be a fantastic option. It is a good value (even without the sale), excellent products and it comes in a lovely box.  It is certainly on my list of possible gifts.

Missha has several different gift basket options so you can choose the one that most suits you (or your mother’s) skin care and beauty needs. The Time Revolution Best Sellers Set is my personal favorite but I’ve liked the Missha Mother’s Day Gift Guide below if you want to see what other fabulous offers they have this year so that you can find the perfect gift.

MISSHA Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Let’s talk lips

I have a weakness for lip products. I think part of it stems from when I was little. I would always get horribly chapped lips when I was a kid and they would crack and belled and be painful. And then I was given lip balm and it was like magic. Or at least the good ones were. The bad ones felt like scraping a glue stick across your lips and often hurt to apply unless you kept them in your pocket for a few hours letting your body heat half melt them so they could more easily apply. The good ones took away the pain.

I’m fairly certain that is where my love affair with lip products started. And while I am often pulled in my colors and claims, like the lip balms of old, not all lip products are created equal. I find it helpful to look at the lip products before the holiday sales kick off. I know, I probably don’t need to be ordering any more lip products. However, when it comes time for check out, I often find myself just a tiny bit short of hitting the free shipping mark. while a lot of places have free shipping around the holidays as standard, a lot don’t or they have a minimum purchase threshold for free shipping.

At those times I generally look around for one more small item to just put me over the edge and into free shipping range. Nine times out of ten, it ends up being a lip product. On most sites they are among the lest expensive items and let’s face it, I never really object to getting a new lip product. Hence the pre-black Friday lip review.

So let’s look at a few of this year’s winners.

Top of the list has to go to bareMinerals. while the rest of this list won’t be in top ten order, I do feel that I need to put them first as there are three bare minerals lip products pictured above. One is the Gen Nude Liquid lip (black cap), the second is the mineralist lip gloss balm, and the third is a bullet style lip stick also from their mineralist line. The glosses aren’t overly stick and they are comfortable to wear. The lipstick has great staying power and while it does fade throughout the day, as pretty much all traditional style lipsticks do, it leaves your lips feeling nourished. While I love the color and look of these products, the thing that puts them at the top of my list is simply the fact that my lips feel great even after they are gone. There is something in the product that is nourishing. And going into the winter, having a nourishing lip product is an extra bonus. If you are looking to try them out, they also have some amazing holiday lip kits on sale right now. As well as some great deals.

While bareMinerals does take the blue ribbon prize this year with both liquid and bullet styles, lets split the liquids from the solids here. There are five traditional bullet style lipsticks that I put on my repurchase list. These are not only the ones I am happy to add to my shopping cart to reach the free shipping mark, but products that I will go to the brand website specifically to purchase. They are:

  • Bite Beauty Power move soft matte lipstick: I am so relieved to be able to put this one on the list. I love the formula but for a while it looked like Bite beauty was not selling them any more. Just when I was about to give up and realized that I was just going to have to use the last nub of lipstick up and say goodbye, Bite beauty brought their lipsticks back. These lipsticks are nourishing, long lasting and they both smell and taste good. I know tasting makeup usually isn’t a thing, but with lipsticks it sometimes matters. If you don’t like the taste of traditional lipsticks, I suggest giving this one a try.
  • Lorac Alter Ego Satin Lipstick: This is a great covering lipstick that won’t dry out your lips. It has a nice vanilla scent and is incredibly easy to wear.
  • Wet ‘n Wild Megalast lipstick: While this doesn’t give extra nourishment to the lips, I was surprised and very pleased with the coverage and longevity of the color. It is a very comfortable lipstick to wear and an excellent product to keep on hand. I generally find the wet ‘n wild lipsticks jumping into my cart as i peruse the aisles when I am at Target. Sometimes after a bad day, a new lipstick does make me feel a little bit better. And This ois one that one break the bank. At the moment they are even harder to resist picking up. If you follow the link to the Wet ‘n wild Site you will see that the normally $2.99 lipsticks are now $1.99. That is certainly a sale I can get behind. And I have been thinking about picking up some more of their color icon palettes as well. So I suspect several lippies will find their way back to me. At the moment they have free shipping on orders $25 or more. they also have a free gift with a $25 purchase (Use Code:WWGIFT25) and a gift with $35 purchase (use Code: WWGIFT30)
  • MAC: I know, MAC lipsticks are not a new try for me. they were in fact my very first non-drug store lippie. I used to pick them up as a special treat to myself. They have several varieties to choose from. At the moment I am really loving the Love Me Lipstick line. It is very comfortable to wear and non-drying. I will say though that there is definitely the possibility of me going for the retro line should I make any MAC purchases in the near future. Although to be honest, while I like their other products, I generally shop MAC for lipsticks. Their other products are good, but it is the lips that are the usual draw for me towards the brand. And right now, that is towards the Love Me Line.
  • Buxom Full Force Plumping Lipstick: While Buxom Lips haven’t been in my life as long as MAC has, they run a close second. They are a product that I will always repurchase. The main lipstick I have now is a very neutral shade tha I can’t wear on it’s own. I use it as a base for a lot of other products though. It wears like a really good matte lipstick, but it has the plumping action that I really enjoy. It is a great base for other products and it is a good topper to tone down too bright shades. It is a lipstick that works well on it’s own and still plays well with others. As the shade I have is too neutral for me, it is mostly a helper. I am eyeing several shades that i can wear on my own though and I suspect i will end up with quite a few of them.

There are two glosses in my list and they are:

  • Colourpop So Juicy: Also a plumping gloss and also a standard. It looks great and fabulously glossy on the lips bare or over another matte product. I personally like to use this as my pre makeup ritual. I’ll apply it right after the shower and then let it work it’s magic while I dry and style my hair and get everything else rady. Then I will take it off at the last second and put whatever lipstick I want to use on over it.
  • Roen Kiss my liquid lip balm: Despite the name it is not a lip balm. it is a gloss. A very peppermint gloss. I personally like it as it projects the scent of peppermint making it seem as though I have fresh breath even when my mouth is closed. Plus I like peppermint. It is also nice when you are wearing a face mask. Kind of personal air freshener you wear on your lips. It is a nice gloss. There are no balm benefits though, despite the name. If you like peppermint, I’d take a look at it, if not, I’d avoid it.

And here we enter the hole stretch my darlings. That’s right, the liquid lips. And to be honest they are all on this list for exactly the same reasons. They are compfortable to wear. They do not dry out my lips. They all dry down enough not to leave lip prints behind and they are long lasting. So what are these four fabulous products?

And there you have it my darlings. The lip products that have made it to the top of my list. while i want most of these products in multiple shades, I suspect that when I delve into the Black Friday. Cyber Monday sales, shades of these products will be added to make up my free shipping quota, brcause when the formula is good, multiple shades aren’t a hardship.

Buxom Cosmetics

Gifts for Perfume Lovers

As the holiday’s approach gift giving starts to rise in a lot of minds. I don’t know about you, but I start thinking of my friends and family in categories. I tend to put headings on paper like Skincare, Sports and Cheese on pages and then put names under them so that can begin to group gifts. It isn’t a great way to think of people generally, but it makes shopping easier. The category of Perfume is always a tricky one. I actually have several family members who fall into that category.

I actually fall into that category. I love perfumes.

The issue is that all of us like different scent profiles. Something I like, may or may not be liked by the others on my list, so I have a few possibilities for scent based gifts, that will prove less problematic if you have scent loving people on your holiday lists.

  • Discovery Sets

Discovery sets are a great way to learn about any perfume brand The sets provide you with a range of products from the bran in a low cost way so that you can actually try them out and see which one(s) are worth a full sized purchase. It also allows you to experiment with a brand you may not be all that familiar with. When gift giving it is a great way to give someone a range of scents without committing to one on their behalf. Since scent is such a personal thing, it gives them the options to choose the best one for themselves. And most discovery sets seem to come with a code that lets you put the cost of the perfume discovery set towards a full sized purchase, which is a little something extra. There are two Discovery Kits that I tried this year and would highly reccomend.

The first is from Kierin NYC. This discovery set costs $20 and you get a $20 code towards the purchase of a full sized purchase. With the Discovery Kit you get Four rather large samples and a 1ml travel sized bottle of their newest scent. I absolutely adored this kit when I tried it. A couple of the scents I could see more for others than myself, but I ended up purchasing the 10 am Flirt as a scent for my personal collection. Interestingly enough when I first read the descriptions I thought it would be a different scent i gravitated towards, but this is the one that ended up hooking me. And as an added bonus, not that fabulous scent isn’t enough, the bottles that their full sized perfumes come in are all made from recycled glass. So it is just a little extra benefit in an already great product.

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The second discovery set I enjoyed this year was the Zents Samples Collection. This costs $22 and again comes with a discount code for a full sized purchase. It contains ten sample scents from their collection. I still haven’t made up my mind as to which one I want to purchase full sized, because there are just several that I really enjoyed. I’m having to narrow it down. Which the Zents products, these are Eau de Toilettes rather than perfumes. This makes them lighter in scent and the Zents scents tend to be ones that cling close to the skin to create a personal scent space rather than projecting out into the word around them. The scents tend to be more delicate in aroma. They are also designed to be layered together so if one of the samples is a little too sweet, you can add a bit from one that might be a little too heavy with spice you create your own blend. It is a really fun way to play around with scent. In addition. the scents in their Eau de Toilette collection are also featured in their bath and body products. There is some variation between products, but it is still the same basic profile. If you find a scent you enjoy, you can get it in a bath truffle, hand cream, soap and possibly even shampoo. Plus it is just fun to play around with.

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  • Perfume Subscriptions

There are a lot of perfume subscriptions out there. In general these feature a container of approximately 0.27 oz of product sent to you each month. The prices generally range from $10-$15 depending on the service. Some will send a one time refillable travel case others will send you a travel case each month. I’ve tried several of these services and my favorite one has to be Scent Box. It has a slightly lower cost than many of the others (by only a dollar or two), but it has a really wide selection. In addition each month comes with a case for the tube of perfume. I personally like this as even though the amount of perfume scent is supposed to be enough for a month, I sometimes have perfume left over tat the end of the month because I might be trying out another sample for a few days or skip a day or two wearing the scent. I find if I take the glass tube out of the case, It ends up rolling around in a drawer and getting lost. The cases I keep with my perfumes and reach for them more often. In addition Scent box gives you a monthly credit towards a purchase. Each month you get a subscription from the, they will give you a small credit (Scentbucks). You can put this towards the purchase of a full sized perfume, an extra sample size or something else from their website (candles, body products). It is an extra nice perk.

I have to admit one of my absolutely favorite reasons for recommending this subscription is the ease of exchange. I am a sucker for a good perfume description. But sometimes the scent that arrives, is not what I expected. If you get a scent you absolutely can’t stand you can send it back and they will send you a different one from your list of selections. They send you a return label and as long as you send it back within a certain time frame and with the majority of the product still inside, they will take it back no questions asked and simply send out a new scent. I find this gives me extra comfort in trying new scents that I may be on the fence about or to go for ones that might be just out of my comfort level.

Right now Scent Box has a discount on their gift subscriptions. A 3 month Gift is $35 (regular $44.95), a six month gift is $66.15 (regular $84.95) and a twelve month subscription is $124.55 (regular $159.95). There is also a discount on a regular subscription of you are purchasing it for yourself or someone in your household. They have two categories the Standard $14.95 per month and the Premium $19,95 per month. There are more items available in the premium category, but I have never had an issue with the standard selection. Right now you can get your first month of this subscription for 40% off.

Which is a good way to try it if you are looking for a little holiday treat for yourself. While they do have a scent of the month that they recommend to you each month, you can choose your own selections from their list of perfumes and build your own line up so that you can choose exactly what you are getting. I find this to be a fantastic way to try new scents, or to let someone you love who enjoys perfumes to try a wider array.

  • And finally…

My final suggestion for those looking for gifts for scent loving friends and family is alas, only for those of you reading in the UK.I mention this because I know some of you are in the UK and shopping for the holidays and it might be a benefit. I checked with them (repeatedly actually) but they can’t ship internationally and at the moment don’t have any plans to look into doing so.

I know so sad, but for those of us not living in the UK, the blog and information on the site is well worth bookmarking for reading up on scent related issues, even if all we can do is drool over the boxes and kits we can’t order. Who are these taunting devils? It is the Perfume Society.

They not only have established collections such as the Molton Brown Scent Collection (one I am looking at ordering for myself from the Molton Brown Site in the near future) but they put together discovery boxes. These are like any other subscription boxes, except that they contain a multitude of perfume samples. The Time To Shine Discovery Box (which I believe is their newest) is $30 or $26 for members. It looks as though it contains 12 scent products some deluxe sample sizes and one of which looks like a hand cream. I actually purchased this as a gift for a cousin of mine who does live in the UK.

They didn’t have any problems with me buying it as long as it was shipping to a UK address. It was more expensive as I was paying in US currency and the price listed is in pounds (I just couldn’t find the key to type the pounds sign). As it is a gift (and in a different country) I clearly didn’t open it, but I know she’s gotten things from them before and loved them. Personally I have been following their blogs for quite a while and love the information presented. Often I can find the items they mention elsewhere but it is often where I hear about new perfume releases and other interesting tidbits. so even if you can’t order, it is a great site to check out.

I hope that for those of you looking for potential gifts for scent loving compatriots, this helps you out in your quest for the perfect gift. happy shopping.