Swiss Army Man Review (Spoiler Free)

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What can I say about this film that would capture how utterly bizarre and simultaneously beautiful it is? Swiss Army Man, a film by The Daniels Kwan and Scheinert, stars Paul Dano as a disillusioned man stranded on a deserted island. Dano’s character Hank is just about to commit suicide when he sees a body wash up on the shore. Daniel Radcliffe plays the flatulent corpse that Hank names Manny.  After realizing that Manny is already dead, Hank goes back to his suicide attempt. He quickly realizes though, that just because Manny is dead, doesn’t mean he’s useless. Thus begins their journey of incredible friendship and self discovery.

Still with me? Yes, this film is as odd as it sounds. One of the main characters is a dead body with a gas issue (which is remedied by a wine cork – don’t ask) but if you can get past that, this film is so much more than a fart joke. Its about the uncomfortable truths of friendship and society and all the ways that they impact us.

As they trek through the wilderness on this epic adventure to bring Hank back to society and the woman he loves, they both discover what life is about; why we hide certain aspects of ourselves, and what it means to be free. This is a film about accepting every part of yourself and every part of life. The good, the bad, and the strange.

The Daniels have gifted us with some beautiful cinematography here. Their understanding of creating scenes that entice the senses is truly amazing. There are a few moments that are nothing short of ridiculous but the way they are framed and the interesting use of music push the viewer past any preconceived notions and towards accepting something different.

If you are open to adventure I highly suggest you go see this film. In a world full of remakes and a formulaic sameness this film is a slightly bewildering breath of fresh air.

Watch the trailer for Swiss Army Man on YouTube:

Artis Brush Dupe Review

If you are into makeup and you’ve been on the internet in the past year, you have probably seen the Artis Makeup Brushes. They are all over the place right now and the hype surrounding these brushes is insane.

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The ten piece set directly from the Artis website is $355. WHAT?! Yes, FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS for a set of makeup brushes. These super fancy brushes have their own cleaning system and are touted for their amazing ability to flawlessly blend and smooth makeup.

I will say, I’ve seen the results of these brushes and they DO give a flawless finish. But are they worth the $355 price tag? I’m going to say no.

41AMQkCWEDLAfter seeing these brushes all over the internet and damn near every makeup tutorial on YouTube, I decided I really needed to try them. Uhem – But you know a girl is not about that $400 for a makeup toothbrush life! NO!

I found these Artis Brush Dupes on Amazon for $29.99. It is a ten piece set of dense brushes in varying sizes. They look and feel very similar to the original and I honestly feel they give pretty much exactly the same results.

I use color corrector under my foundation and always had a hard time keeping it from moving when I applied my foundation. I used to set the corrector before applying anything over it to keep it in place. Imagine my surprise when trying these brushes quickly for the first time that I didn’t need to set my corrector first! The brushes have such a light, soft touch that they smoothed my foundation right over the orange concealer with no problems.

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 The set that I bought from Amazon was from Unimiex but there are many different dupes you can find. It didn’t come with a cleaning system like the fancy set but I just clean them the same way I do all my other brushes. I haven’t had any problems so far.

If you’ve been thinking about trying the Artis Professional Makeup brushes but the price tag is troubling then I would definitely suggest going for a cheaper dupe. I love these brushes, I prefer the black handles tot he silver ones, and you really can’t beat quality results for a much smaller price tag.

Review: Joico Moisture Recovery

As a natural haired curly girl, making sure my hair is moisturized is priority number one. I am always in search of the perfect hair care routine and the perfect products that will keep my hair looking and feeling amazing. I have thick, 4C, low porosity hair so healthy, moisturized, and well maintained hair is a must for me but sometimes it’s a struggle.

I also have my son’s hair to maintain. He is textured differently than me (3B/3C) and up until recently had thick curly hair down to his waist. Needless to say this household sees a lot of different products. I’m always trying to find something that works for both of us but that’s not always possible.

Usually, I look for products that are specifically geared toward curly/kinky hair, but I know that many naturals have success with other products. I heard about Joico Moisture Recovery Shampoo and Conditioner from one of my favorite Natural Hair Vloggers on YouTube and decided to give it a try. I purchased the set from Amazon for about $18 but you can also find in stores like Ulta.

WHAT IS IT? One shampoo (10.1oz) and one conditioner (10.1oz)

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Wash Day Duo

Both the shampoo and conditioner have a light, pleasant, smell to them. I appreciate that because a lot of products I’ve tried for “Afro textured” hair have strong  and usually not appealing scents (All my 90’s kid Blue Magic sisters know what I’m talking about). The shampoo and the conditioner are smooth and creamy in consistency and lather beautifully. I used these products on my hair and also on my older son’s (King August) also super thick hair.

The Shampoo: I placed this directly to the scalp and used the pads of my fingers to rub the dirt and product buildup out, then let the rest of hair be cleansed by rinsing. On my son’s head this method cleansed his scalp and his hair with no issues. On my head it cleansed my scalp easily but left my hair immediately and noticeably dry – major bummer.

The Conditioner: I placed a generous amount of conditioner on the shaft of the hair beginning from the tips, let sit for a few minutes and then rinsed thoroughly. On my son’s head this left his hair feeling SUPER soft, detangled, and had his curls boing-ing and bouncing all over the place! On my head it softened and replaced some moisture to my hair and provided some much-needed slip to the detangling process.

My hair didn’t come out as soft as my sons when I used the shampoo as well. I tried only using the conditioner as a co-wash with excellent results! I had fully moisturized and defined coils. Basically, this conditioner is MAGIC.

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The King and I

PROS

  • Conditioner works for multiple hair types
  • Shampoo cleanses effectively
  • Conditioner is great for co-washing
  • Smells pleasant

CONS

  • Shampoo can be drying on some textures

 

WHAT’S THE VERDICT?: These products seems to work best for my son’s 3B/3C hair. The shampoo cleans dirt and debris with ease and the conditioner softens and moisturizes so much after only a minute! The shampoo dried out my 4C  hair but the conditioner is the stuff of dreams. Since it works for both of us it will become a (semi) permanent staple in our lineup. I will continue to use the shampoo on my son’s hair but I definitely not be using it on my hair again.

Review: Farm Fresh To You

More and more people are becoming very conscious about what they put on and into their bodies. As a result, organic food and products are everywhere. They are usually pretty easy to get – most grocery stores have at least a small section dedicated to organic food. But sometimes the selection can be too small, too expensive, or too…ripe.

A growing trend these days is farm to table services. Their mission is to make it very easy for families and businesses to get fresh produce. I have a small family of four and we definitely eat our fair share of fruits and vegetables. A friend of mine gets a weekly delivery and loves it, so I decided to try it for myself. I found a company that delivered to my area called Farm Fresh To You.

WHAT IS IT? A service that grows farm fresh organic produce and delivers to your door. Simple. You can choose the frequency of your deliveries – once a week up to once every four weeks. You decide the size and variety of your box. You also are able to easily cancel or suspend your service (in case of a vacation etc).

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The website was clear and easy to navigate. I set up my delivery for the next week and waited. One thing to note is that the deliveries are always overnight and they don’t knock at the door. The box will just be placed on your doorstep between 8 pm and 8 am.

WHAT WAS IN THE BOX? (1) bunch of chard, (1) bunch of lettuce, (2) bunches of beets, (2) kiwis, (6) pears, (1lb) purple fingerling potatoes, and a newsletter with coupon.

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View from the top.

The box was a little bit on the expensive side. The one I chose was the least pricey and the options go up to $110 with the far end being large boxes for offices or businesses. I selected the “Mixed Fruit and Veggie Small” box for $26, however I used a referral code from a friend and received a $10 discount. In the end I suppose I wound up with a little more than I would have if I had purchased these organic fruits and veggies in a store or farmer’s market.

One of the great features this company offers is the ability to customize your order. While you can’t choose exactly what you will receive, you can specify items you would not like. I chose to exclude apples, grapes, grapefruit, and oranges; Not because of allergies or taste preferences, but just to see what else they had to offer.

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They’re nature’s candy ya know.

Since I had excluded many of the fruit options I received mostly vegetables (which was fine with me). They seemed to come almost directly from the ground so they were still dirty. You will need to make sure to give them a thorough washing.

Everything I received was very fresh – no overly ripe or rotting spots. The taste of organic produce is amazing! The pears are somehow peary-er and the kiwis are sweeter than I’ve experienced before. I confess I have never eaten a beet, nor have my children, so it will be fun to try them. We received two bunches of them so we can try them different ways and find out what’s best.

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Gorgeous chard

PROS

  • Delivery service
  • Customization
  • Truly fresh

CONS

  • Random
  • A little bit pricey

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WHAT’S THE VERDICT? It was a very convenient way to get fresh, organic, produce into my home. I will definitely purchase another but this time I will not exclude any options. I recommend this service to anyone who wants to try organic vegetables and fruit. Because of the random selections it’s a great way to discover new things and maybe learn to cook a few things you hadn’t before. It’s worth giving a try! If you’d like to get your own box from Farm Fresh TO You use the code JENN8875 for $10 off. Check to see if they deliver to your area.

(Disclaimer: I was in no way paid or compensated for this review. I purchased this product of my own free will and I did not receive it for free.)

Review: Etude House Wonder Pore Freshner

I have recently been getting really into Asian beauty products. It seems like they just have gorgeous flawless skin most of the time. I know that has a lot to do with genetics and diet, but I think it also is due to the products they use and the routines that are practiced is Asian countries. I had been taught the cleanse, tone, and moisturize method which is only those three steps. In many countries like Japan and Korea, girls are taught beauty routines that may contain up to 10 or even more steps! They have a serum, cream, lotion, or potion for just about everything you can imagine.

One of the things I have heard a lot about is the Wonder Pore Freshner from Etude House. It is a toner that can be used to tone (duh), gently cleanse in the morning, or spray on to refresh during the day. It is supposed to balance the pH of your skin and control excess sebum (gross oil).

WHAT IS IT? According to Etude House The freshner is a “10-in-1 total pore solution freshener for intensive pore care. This Freshner balances pH levels, makes skin pure like baby skin, and prevents skin troubles caused by pH imbalance.” Sounds good to me! I decided to try it.

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Adorable packaging

The 16oz bottle was about $17 and I ordered it from Amazon, but you can find it many places online including the Etude House website. The shipping took a month which was a long wait. I’m not sure if it would have been faster to order elsewhere but it comes from overseas (Korea), so that didn’t bother me too much.  It arrived about a month ago in this super cute powder blue packaging. The box has descriptions and instructions in both Korean and English.

WHAT WAS IN THE BOX? A 500 ml (16.90 fl.oz) bottle of freshener, a container of rectangle cotton pads, and three small samples of other products.

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Free cotton pads. Sweet.

There really is no scent to this product, which for me is a great thing!  I have irritable skin so I need to be careful of which products I use to avoid breakouts. No fragrance means that it is suitable to a wider variety of skin and sensitivities.

My skin is oily/combination – oily through the T-zone and normal to dry around the rest. I use this twice a day; over my whole face in the morning and through my T-zone at night. I found that if I use it twice on the drier areas of my face they can become a little too dry – but not tight. However, it works well to control my oily areas.

The package says it all, it is definitely cool and refreshing! There is no stinging, astringent feeling to it and it dries lightly with no tightness at all. My skin looks brighter and feels smoother. An added bonus is that it does seem to remove any stubborn dirt or makeup that my cleanser didn’t.

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Little samples

Far and away the thing I like most about this product is the pump. It makes it really easy to get just the right amount without getting it everywhere! You just place your cotton pad on the spout and press down to dispense. Since the cotton pad is there to absorb there is less chance of spill. The bottle is large and with such a precise dispenser I doubt I’ll be running out any time soon.

There was one thing that wasn’t so great about it. It had absolutely no effect on the size or visibility of my pores. Minimizing the appearance of the pores is something it claims to do and one of the reasons I wanted to try this toner.

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Pump action!

PROS

  • Pleasant cooling sensation
  • Cleans skin well
  • Controls excess oil
  • Awesome pump!

CONS

  • May be too much for dry skin
  • No pore minimizing effect
  • Long wait for shipping

WHAT’S THE VERDICT? Overall, I like this toner and I will probably purchase it again when I run out. I can’t say if it’s a holy grail product just yet – I’ll continue using it for a few more weeks first – but it is definitely looking good so far.