Play by Sephora Subscriptions are Open!

I just checked my email and got an alert from one of my favorite websites – My Subscription Addiction and learned that the much coveted Play by Sephora Monthly Box is now open for new subscribers! So of course I immediately popped over to their website and signed up, because at $10 a month, they’re supposed to be one of the best in the game.

I really can’t justify adding another box to my monthly roster, so I’m going to get rid of another subscription first, but I’m not entirely sure which one I’ll be dropping yet. I love getting beautiful surprises in the mail, but this is the one I’ve been waiting for! I mean, it’s Sephora for crying out loud!

I don’t see a referral link, so you’ll just have to head over to the Play by Sephora site and sign up there! Hopefully you get in on the goods before there are still spots!!!!



Freebie Haul, March – April, 2016

It wasn’t that long ago I began this blog and set a personal goal to do some sort of writing every day – whether it be blogging, or journaling, or working on my memoirs. This particular project is a way of keeping myself disciplined and focused. I wanted to challenge myself to write about something I’m passionate about, that isn’t related to the heavier content I’m normally working on. Budget beauty and fabulous frugality is something I’m excited about, as it gives me a diversion from the everyday BS I’ve got to deal with as a disabled chick living in constant (chronic) pain.

When I first set out on this adventure, I had no idea I’d end up discovering even more ways to obtain nice things. I’ve gotten a ton of amazing products over the past few months, and I’m surprised at how easy it is to obtain free stuff if you’re willing to put in a little bit of legwork!

That said, I’m really writing this post to brag about discuss what I’ve gotten for free in a little over a month. I’m psyched to share this cuz I’m almost in disbelief at the amount of loot I have!

Today alone, I got the following:

TODAY’S HAUL ALONE IS WORTH $68.99 retail value! How sweet is that? 

Other stuff I got over the past week: 

  • A package of 10 Mr. Sketch Scented Washable Markers. Ahhh, the childhood memories! Retail Value of $8.99. (via crowdtap)
  • Three bottles of Vitafusion Gummy vitamins – with a retail value of well over $30.00!
  • A bottle of Nexium containing a 14-day supply, which is about $14.00 retail. (via Smiley360).
  • A deluxe sample package of cascade dishwasher tabs, which I gave away to a friend who actually has a dishwasher! Retail value is probably $4.00. (Via BzzAgent).
  • 11 deluxe-sized samples of Garnier Skin Active Clearly Brighter Moisturizer – SPF 15 (through my sister, via crowdtap). Retail Value? Those samples would probably be at least $1.00 each if they were available for purchase. So we’ll say about $11.00. Any samples we get are distributed to many of our family and friends, of course! What fun is getting freebies if you don’t spread the love?
  • I also got two truvia samples in the mail, for a total of four packets. Hey, they were free, right? *I don’t think they’re worth counting the value of, since they’re easy enough to snag while grabbing a coffee from Cumby’s or whatever convenience store is in your area. 

The rest of my haul, from the beginning of March until now, includes the following:

  • Sample of Secret Clinical Strength – Est. Value – $2.00
  • Lotsa Sample Packets of Garnier Whole Blends. Est. Value – $5.00
  • Sample of Playtex Tampons – Est. Value – $1.00
  • Sample of Poise Pads – Est. Value of 50 cents.
  • Magazine Subscriptions – Oprah, Seventeen Magazine and Elle. $30.00 value.
  • Wal*Mart Gift Card for $5.00 from My Coke Rewards.
  • $10.00 in Amazon Gift cards from Bing Rewards.
  • $80.00 in Amazon Gift cards from Crowdtap.
  • By far, the best single item I’ve received in the past month has got to be the Amope Pedi Perfect Rechargeable Wet and Dry Foot file (via crowdtap) which retails for $60 – 70.00!!!!!!

So far, the tally of estimated retail value is nearly $301.00! I’m impressed with myself as I sit here typing this. Just…wow!

The following list of items is stuff I got for free* in exchange for HONEST reviews:

When it comes to getting products in exchange for reviews, the process can be a tedious pain in the ass, so I’ll break that down for you in a future post! I am gonna continue to get freebies for reviews, but I think I got a little overwhelmed and bit off more than I could chew! I mean, look at how many products I agreed to review! I’ve got a whole new batch of items being shipped for review purposes too!

* The catch is that you have to pay for shipping – and write some good reviews! Having Amazon Prime is a major major bonus factor and saves you from having to pay to have these items shipped! 

All told, I’ve gotten $545.00 worth of products and gift cards in a little over a month. Not too shabby, if you ask me, and I’m still an amateur at this stuff! Now that it is spring, and better weather is upon us, I wonder if I’m going to be able to keep up with this little hobby of mine!

If you’re excited and inspired, and looking to get started on your freebie finding quest, I suggest signing up for Crowdtap and Smiley 360 (they don’t have referral links so BUMMER). They’re by far the two easiest sites to get free stuff from, and they require the least amount of work. Be sure to complete your profiles and any surveys they have available. Crowdtap rewards you for answering their polls and questionnaires by giving you points; once you accumulate 1,000 points, you get a $5.00 amazon gift card. When I get in a groove, earning those points is a BREEZE! Even better, if you sign up your significant other or bestie, you can bank their gift cards too (assuming they don’t want to do the work and reap the rewards themselves).

I didn’t get offers from Smiley when I first signed up, but after a few weeks, I got my first invite. It is well worth the wait – and the surveys you take there are short and sweet! I’ve also been using Bing Rewards (sign up via my referral link please). It’s easy to earn points that can be cashed in for gift cards and more!

I had every intention of posting pictures to prove I’ve actually got all of these goodies – but I’ve been working on this post on and off for hours, so the photos are going to have to wait! Besides, some of the images I took were pretty darned grainy, as I can’t hold a camera straight to save my life! But this post does deserve an image, so here’s me, looking happy, cuz, WOW, I scored some good stuff!

WIN_20160401_14_52_13_Pro (2)

Hoooray! I rock!


So what have you gotten for free lately that you’re excited about? Interested in learning more about my process? Subscribe and stay up-to-date on my posts, where I’ll give you tips, tricks, and even top secrets on how you can be like me – big, broke (but not broken) and beautiful! Thanks for reading, and stay beautiful! 



Review: Skin2Spirit Facial Serum

Hello budget beauties – today I’m going to post a flurry of reviews I agreed to do in exchange for free products.

The first one is from a company called Skin 2 Spirit which offers natural and organic, cruelty-free products. I got it through a company called Tomoson, which I’m impressed with thus far!

The product: Skin2Spirit Advanced Hyaluronic Facial Serum

#BESTSERUM (the hashtag I was asked to use for this product).

The price: $24.95 for 6 oz.

The claims: Superior moisturization, more potent hyaluronic acid formulation, good for all skin types, natural ingredients, non-comedogenic (meaning it won’t block pores), and finally, a promise of younger, fresh-looking skin.

Here’s what I think: I’ve been using this for a few weeks, and I like it so far. It’s light, it doesn’t irritate my skin, and works well on the parts of my face that are both dry and oily/acne prone.

The Verdict: Okay, honestly, I could never afford the price of this product. That means I’m highly unlikely to ever purchase it. Is it worth the money? That’s not for me to decide – it depends entirely on your budget. However, if you’re looking for a good product that’s organic, natural, cruelty-free and actually works, BUY IT, if you can afford to do so! The amount of product you get is 6 oz – far more than the average size of this type of product.

I think the company is great, and I’d be willing to try more of their products! I’ll continue to use this serum because it’s helped my skin and I am not allergic – and if you’re like me, that’s a big selling point!


Here’s the Mandatory Disclaimer: I got this product for free in exchange for an honest review. I agreed to try the product and post reviews on Amazon and my social media accounts (thankfully, WordPress is connected to Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and google plus, which is hella helpful!). I wasn’t compensated in any way, and the fact that I got this product for free doesn’t mean I am going to give you a biased point of view. 

I’m a savvy consumer and when I see a sales pitch, I cringe! I can usually tell when somebody is being honest or if they’re outright providing an advertisement. I take the opinions and reviews of other people very seriously, and I don’t like to be duped – so I will NOT BS AT ALL! 

If my readers would be willing to click on my amazon reviews, that would be great! It would be EVEN BETTER if you could click on the part that says “was this review helpful?” and give it a “yes” because that increases the odds of me becoming an Amazon Vine reviewer – and Vine reviewers get free products in exchange for their opinions. I have no shame about the fact that I’m actively searching for free stuff, because as I said before, I’m always looking for deals, bargains, and I love to get new products! I could never afford to buy all of these things on my budget, but I deserve to have nice things, so this is one way I treat myself!

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more product reviews!


Reviews I Gotta Do!

I have been looking for skin care products to add to my routine, and I’ve learned a lot about the types of ingredients that are actually effective when it comes to the concerns I deal with – sensitive skin, mild chin acne, dry/flaky skin in the winter, and of course, the dreaded signs of aging that start to creep up on people in their late thirties!

Being a budget beauty, I’m always looking for ways to obtain items on the cheap, so when I found sites that give products away in exchange for honest reviews and blog posts, I decided to go for it! But this discovery has been overwhelming, because I’ve been trying a bunch of new products ranging from skin serums to natural essential oils, and a couple of other random things I thought I might want.

I got an email today that stated I have 24 hours to submit my reviews, and since I promised to blog write-ups, I’ve got to get on that! So be prepared for a flurry of reviews over the next few days! Whether or not I continue to receive and review products is up in the air at this point, because I’m terrible with deadlines, even though they hold me accountable!

For those who are interested in learning more about how I got these products, I’ll post a list of the websites, and I’ll share my favorites with you as well! In the meantime, I’ve got to get on writing the reviews! I’ve spent the past few hours putting all of this together – and I just finished writing a handful of reviews that I posted on

I’m passionate about beauty on a budget, but I must confess, I’m feeling a little overwhelmed with this hobby at the moment. I didn’t realize how easy it could be to get stuff for free! Maybe it isn’t exactly free, and at times, it requires a good amount of work to obtain products, but I’m enjoying this process so far!

I have earned about $150 in Amazon Gift cards over the past few months, and I’ve gotten hundreds of dollars worth of free items too! If you’re interested in learning more about how I’ve done this, I’ll break it all down really soon!