Current Giveaways at Reviews by Cole

Date Fri, November 30 2012

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Track Your Packages with Fedex Delivery Manager

Date Thu, April 16 2015

For months, or even longer!, I’ve been complaining that Fedex doesn’t have a tracking utility like UPS. As it turns out, I was wrong, but I had never heard of Fedex Delivery Manager. Perhaps it’s the name or they just don’t advertise it, but it went unbeknownst to me.

FedEx Delivery Manger works similar to the tool from their competition. You have to create a Fedex account if you don’t already have one. Once you’re signed in, you’ll see a list of your packages. I currently have no active packages but see all 8 from the beginning of this year. I’m not sure why this is the cutoff date.

The packages seem to use my address rather than name, and you can add additional nicknames in your preferences to ensure all your packages are tracked. Preferences also allow you to update your email address and notifications settings. There are quite a few options. By default, it looks like you’ll get an SMS text on the day before delivery and after delivery, which is useful for me because sometimes packages are left at my building’s door.

You can change your settings to receive an email or automated call for the following events:

  • Fedex has a packaged addressed to you
  • Delivery exceptions
  • Day of delivery

My list shows the tracking number, departure location, ship date and delivery estimated date. You can double-click any entry for additional information, to change notifications or to obtain proof of delivery. This detailed screen is actually a copy of the tracking page, but Fedex Delivery Manager means you don’t need a tracking number to track packages (and I don’t always get one). Plus, you can track multiple packages at once.

Fedex Delivery Manager

Fedex Delivery Manager

Since all my packages have been delivered, there’s a nice checkmark next to all of them in the master list. The list includes deliveries made by Fedex in addition to those completed by the Post Office, which I fortunately do not have trouble with. After signing in, I was glad to see I hadn’t missed any deliveries this year!

Any item on the list can be removed, so I could clear it out my list. You can also add items to your watch list or update the name in the list to one that helps you differentiate.

One feature of the Delivery Manager that I like is the calendar view, which enables you to see when deliveries are expected rather than just the list.

Functionally, Fedex Delivery Manager is quite similar to MyUPS — just a little harder to find if you don’t know where to look. I’ve got it bookmarked now, though, so I’ll never lose it!

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NeoCell Acai Berry Biotin Bursts

Date Wed, April 15 2015

You might remember when I tried NeoCell’s Beauty Bursts a while back. I liked that the supplements were tasty and easy to chew, so I was excited to work with the company again to try their Biotin Bursts. This is a similar product, but the main ingredient is biotin, as the name suggests, rather than the collagen in the Beauty Bursts.

Each package contains 30 individually-wrapped soft chews that contain 10,000 micrograms of biotin. One recommended daily doses is 30mcg, so one is all you need!

They’re easy to take as you’re running down the door, and you can keep them in your purse to have on the go. The container says to store it in the fridge, but I don’t like chewy things to be too hard, so I kept it on the counter. This was fine for me, but it’s springtime in Wisconsin, which isn’t so warm. In a different climate, you might want to stick to the insturctions.

Neocell Acai Berry Biotin Bursts

Neocell Acai Berry Biotin Bursts

The Acai Berry formula is low in sugar, but it still tastes fruity. I’m not sure I actually know what acai tastes like, but this vaguely reminded me of fruity or grape Kool-aid. It might seem a little “artificial” to some people, but I didn’t mind it at all!

You’re supposed to take one daily; although, my journey took a little longer because I forgot a day or two. After roughly a month, 8 of my nails are much longer than they were when I started, and some of them seem especially strong. My thumb nails might be able to break a wall. Okay.. that might be a little exaggerated.

I do currently have two shorter nails, but they’re not crazy short. One nail had broken at a strange angle the while back, so it wound up catching and tearing off. However, the tear was clean and not in layers, which I think is actually a good sign when it comes to to strength.

I actually noticed that my toe nails grew crazy fast and strong, and had to cut them 3 or so times during that month. I usually cut them about once a month. I do a lot of walking, so keeping my tootsie nails short and smooth is a must, but this was a good way to keep track of growth.

Biotin, a type of B vitamin, is also good for your hair. My hair has been rather voluminous lately, especially since I’ve been keeping it cut short so it’s not weighed down. Growth has also been noticeable this year, which is one reason I’ve already have two haircuts, ha!

I didn’t notice any real difference in skin while taking these supplements. My nails seemed to get the biggest boost from the bursts!

You can check out this post for more benefits of biotin.  I think Biotin Bursts are definitely worth checking out if you’ve got weak hair or nails, especially if pill supplements aren’t up your alley!

Inhibitif Face Serum

Date Tue, April 14 2015

Facial hair. Ugh. As a woman, I shouldn’t have to deal with it, yet I’ve been blessed with my mothers genes. When I look at my mother, her sisters and even her own mother, I see a sort of denial. The if-I-don’t-mention-it-then-it-isn’t-real approach doesn’t work for me, though. Denying facial hair doesn’t remove it, and it doesn’t make others blind to it.

This is why I am often on the look for a product to help my slow hair growth and reduce its appearance. That’s how I discovered Inhibitif.

Inhibitif has a number of formulas, including a serum and cream for body use and a deodorant. The formulas are designed based on sensitivity and thickness of skin in different body parts. The facial serum, for example, is better for sensitive skin that’s thinner. There’s also a few products designed entirely for men; however, most of the formulas have a similar ingredient list.

Inhibitif Face Serum

Inhibitif Face Serum

There’s a couple different bottle sizes for Inhibitif body, and the facial serum, which I received to review, comes in a 30 ml bottle with a dropper. The ingredient list is as follows:

Water (Aqua), Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer, Butylene Glycol, Tremella Fuciformis Sporocarp Extract, Dihydromyricetin, Chelidonine, Saccharide Isomerate, Ethylhexylglycerin, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Glycerin, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Betaine, Pentylene Glycol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Sodium Bisulfite, Farnesol, Linalool.

Inhibitif serum with dropper

Inhibitif serum with dropper

I typically find that droppers are less than idea for administering products like this. They seem so sloppy and inconsistent, and who’s actually going to tip their face back to apply a product? It would be better to simply hold your finger over the lip of the bottle to get product. I personally find myself gathering product from the side of the dropper.

Inhibitif doesn’t have much of a smell, and it goes on clear. There’s no physical reaction or sign that it’s on, and it hasn’t been an issue with any makeup, moisturizer or other products that I already use. I’m also happy to note that it doesn’t cause me to break out, which is always a concern. If  I’m going to use multiple products, I put Inhibitif on first like the instructions state. I would probably have preferred a cream to the serum, and I wonder if I could add the serum to moisturizer and still have it work.

You’re supposed to use twice a day over areas where you remove hair. Initially, I read this as after shaving or waxing twice per day and wondered who shaved that often. So I was just applying the Inhibitif serum after shaving in the morning. However, I saw little results after several weeks, so I did increase to 2x daily for two weeks.

While I do think my hair growth has slowed, it hasn’t stopped enough for me to comfortably stop shaving every day. Nor does the texture seem to be much improved. If the hair seemed finer, for example, I could probably avoid shaving. For my needs, this product would have to have more noticeable results for me to keep buying it. However, I will finish the rest of the bottle and report back later.

According to the site, results can be seen in as few at two weeks. Inhibitif will work better used over waxed areas. Because I shave and pluck rather than waxing, I guess this means I may not see as drastic results than if I waxed. After you start seeing decreased hair growth, you can cut down to using it once every other day.

Aside from reduced hair growth, density and “prominence” are also supposed to be decreased. The description of this seru also claims it will help reduce ingrown hairs and redness, which means it might be worth giving a try if your typical hair removal methods tend to cause that.

However, Inhibitif is a product that you use in addition to whatever method you’re already trying. It won’t take long to apply, so it’s probably worth giving a try to get rid of unsightly and embarrassing facial hair. If Inhibitif does work for you, you may end up spending less time removing hair overall, which may very well make it worth the effort and cost. However, Inhibitif may not work for everyone.

Get Free Samples from U by Kotex

Date Tue, April 14 2015

Listen, there’s not a lot that’s fun about having your period. I mean, maybe we get to enjoy chocolate, but it’s because we’re trying to balance out the negative.

At least U by Kotex is giving away some free samples, so you can try some new products — like their new pads with 3d Capture Core technology.

Click the image below to get your absolutely free samples!

u-by-kotex-free-samples

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Find the Answers You Seek at FacingAcne.com

Date Mon, April 13 2015

I’m sure that I’m not alone when I say one of the most annoying things you can wake up to is a shiny new pimple or blemish. As an adult, my acne has decreased, and it’s also easier to tell when I’m going to break out — typically the week before my period. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t find myself wishing I could do away with it entirely.

As an adult, my acne is mostly caused by my hormonal cycle, but acne can also be caused by stressed, diet, medications and even cleaning your face too much, which encourages too much oil production. These are things I know after years of trying different products to treat and hide acne as well as to prevent it in the future.

Download a free eBook at FacingAcne.com

Download a free eBook at FacingAcne.com

My story involves a lot of trial and error, but yours doesn’t have to, thanks to resources like FacingAcne.com. It’s a great site where you’ll find:

  • Articles about acne — over 400 total!
  • Reviews of common products like Exposed Skincare (my own review will be up soon!) — read a thorough review of Proactiv
  • Quizzes to determine skin type
  • Tips for reducing scars
  • Advice about working with skin doctors
  • Information about body acne

One of the things I really like about this site is that it’s based on science and not old wive’s tales. We’ve all heard advice about what to do or not to do (how about toothpaste for pimples?). Facing Acne skips the get-clear-quick schemes and uses actual science to help improve skin condition.

You can download a free eBook on the site (sidebar) that will help you deal with acne in the most efficient way. Keep it on your PC, send it to your phone or tablet, and you’ll always have the information you need!

Even though I’ve spent plenty of time doing my own research, I still found FacingAcne.com to be quite useful. For example, I didn’t know that some people user laser treatment to help deal with their acne — and the blog even talks about how some doctors might be overdoing it with the lasers. Youch!

I also learned how ice cream can contribute to break outs (and how coconut water, among other foods, can help to battle it) and that other treatments include blue-light therapy, which seems good for my fair skin, and chemotherapy, which can help specific types of acne.

I could ramble on about the helpful information on this site, or you could visit yourself to see if you learn something new or find the perfect product for you to try to get rid of your acne.

Let me know what kind of research you’ve done, whether you’ve used any of the products reviewed on Facing Acne or something you’ve learned from the site in the comments!

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Customize Your Home Decor

Date Sat, April 11 2015

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

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Natural Oils By Radha Beauty

Date Fri, April 10 2015

I was sent two products from Radha Beauty to review: a bottle of fractioned coconut oil and a bottle of pure argan oil. I’ve been increasingly hearing good things about coconut oil, and a friend even just recently posted on Facebook about how much she likes using argan oil for her hair!

So the oils joined the ranks with my other toiletries!

Radha Beauty Coconut Oil

radha beauty coconut oil

radha beauty coconut oil

The coconut oil arrived in a much-larger 16-ounce bottle with a shampoo style press cap. I suspect the larger bottle is because there are so many uses for beauty, and a lot of people are going to use it as a carrier to create other beauty products.

Similarly, a larger bottle works well for cooking uses. In fact, I just recently read a post on TIME about how adding coconut oil to your rice water can cut calories in half. The fractioned oil is a pure oil rather than the waxy coconut oil you can find, and fractioned will last a lot longer without going bad.

However, you should know that this process removed lauric acid, one of the solid, fatty acids found in coconut oil, and liquid coconut oil may not be as effective for some of these uses. The bottle says it’s both not for internal use and good for cooking, but I think I’d stick to solid coconut oil for cooking.

There’s are plenty of lists, like this one, with ideas for how to use your coconut oil. I’m not the type to make my own health and beauty products, so I stuck to things I could use coconut oil for directly.

So, I tried the coconut for a number of different purposes:

  • Moisturizing skin (wet and dry)
  • Shaving
  • Keeping cuticles soft
  • Removing makeup

I also plan to use it to make a sugar scrub — equal parts both ingredients. I just haven’t gotten around to it.

Out of all the things I tried, I like using coconut oil best as a skin moisturizer on wet skin. Shaving left a closer shave than drug-store brands, but it wasn’t better than my preferred brand of shaving cream/oil. My legs also didn’t feel any less itchy after shaving, even though I used the oil to moisturizer.

As a makeup remover, it was too oily, even though this is a relatively non-greasy formula. I do think adding a couple essential oils in your favorite scents would make a great massage oil, but I do have plenty of those.

But almost every time I used it, I wound up with a ring of oil on my counter or table from where the bottle sat. The applicator is really less than ideal, and you’ll probably want a dropper or even a spray bottle, like the one that comes with my body dew, as an applicator.

I would definitely suggest that this bottle at least come with an option dropper, like the argan oil did.

Radha Beauty Argan Oil

radha beauty argan oil

radha beauty argan oil

When it comes to bottling, the argan oil wins – hands-down. It comes in a smaller, capped glass bottle with an additional dropped that fits on it. You can keep the cap for travel, but I tossed mine.

The dropper makes it easy to apply just a little product on your hair, skin or nails. In fact, a little goes a looong way. I found this out as I tried to use argan oil on my hair to give it shin and help with frizz. However, my hair is short enough that even one drop seemed to be too much. It shined like crazy, but seemed a little heavy, even after reducing the amount I was using. I think argan oil would be great for longer hair, however.

Perhaps a smaller dropper would be helpful because even using it for cuticle oil, it seems to be a lot of product. Of course, I massage it into the rest of my hands, too. This is my go-to use for argan oil, right now. I’m sure I could just as easily use the coconut oil, but it’s easier to use the dropper.

I have read that you can use a mix of tea tree oil and argan oil to fight acne, which I will definitely try out later. Right now I’m reviewing another skincare system.

Argan oil does seem less greasy than the fractioned coconut oil, so you might prefer using it when you’d like a less oily option. One thing you can do is add argan oil to your bath, though I don’t have a tub.

If you’re considering these products, I would look up some of the uses and see which one might fit your needs better. The argan oil comes in a smaller bottle, which is better if you’re not sure whether it will be the right product for you. But if you really want to get all the uses out of a natural oil, Radha’s coconut oil comes in a big bottle that will definitely less you experiment.

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