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Buy American Made with Rickshaw Bagworks

Disclaimer:  This is a sponsored post, meaning that I’m being compensated for my time to share my opinions about Rickshaw Bagworks with you.

Rickshaw Bagworks
Can I be honest? I’m not a HUGE ambassador for a “green” lifestyle. I’m not someone who will only buy items second hand, I still use bleach for cleaning on occasion, and I enjoy processed foods from time to time.  I recycle whenever possible and my husband even thinks I am a little extreme about it.  I buy natural cleaners most of the time but I haven’t resorted to only vinegar and baking soda cleaning.  I buy from thrift and consignment stores but not exclusively and mostly because I want to save money and not the planet.  While my family does eat processed food from time to time we most often try to eat healthy, fresh, and homemade meals.  I believe in trying to live a life of balance.

One thing I believe in doing when at all possible is to buy American made products.  From the time I was little I remember hearing a local car commercial that said, “If you don’t buy {name taken out}, buy American.”  I remember asking my family what that meant and why that was important.  I’ve grown up with a pride in our country and I want to support my local and national businesses if at all possible before giving money to countries overseas.  I know products made in America are sometimes more expensive and I won’t get into the economics and politics of it but if the prices are similar I’ll choose the one made in good old USA.

That brings me to why I’m writing today.  I found a company in San Francisco that makes bags, sytlish bags, that are made out of  {get this!} recycled water bottles!   Who would have thought that was possible?  Rickshaw Bagworks has a factory of urban crafters who are revitalizing the way we think of manufacturing.  Their factory is open to the public so if you happen to live near or are visiting San Francisco then stop in for a visit.

Rickshaw Bagworks’ CEO, in an interview with Inc.com, said, “At $10.55 an hour, San Francisco has the highest minimum wage of any city in the United States, along with onerous business taxes and skyrocketing rents. Fully burdened with insurance, taxes, and benefits, our factory labor rate is $20 an hour–20 times the current labor rate in China and 100 times that in Bangladesh…Still, I wouldn’t have it any other way. San Francisco is no place for large-scale industrial manufacturing or low-cost production of commodity goods. But it happens to be an ideal location for micromanufacturers like Rickshaw.”  He sees the value in trading in a lower price point and mass distribution for quality, a quicker turn around time, and product customization.

Rickshaw Bagworks are also made with zero-waste which is pretty phenomenal.  Alright, I’ll take a break from talking and you can watch a video about the Rickshaw Bagworks company.

These Rickshaw Bagworks are at a great price point. The tablet sleeves are around $20 and most of the bags are in the $30-$100 range.

Rickshaw Bagworks Logo
 
Rickshaw Bagworks are made from recycled products, are made with zero waste, are made in America, affordable, and best of all, are fully customizable!  They have messenger bags, grocery totes, sleeves for notebooks and tables, and so much more.  Every item can be fully customized by you for only a few dollars more.  There are not many places that will allow you to do that without charging you an arm and a leg.

If you’re looking for a new bag for yourself or someone you love for Christmas, check out Rickshaw Bagworks.  If you don’t buy Rickshaw Bagworks, buy American!

5 Ways to Feel More Beautiful

5 Ways to Feel More Beautiful

I’ve been thinking a lot about beauty lately, as I always do, but this time I was focusing primarily on outward beauty.  You know, what everyone else sees and judges you by.  You know me, I think that people should spend the majority of their time focusing on inward beauty and developing better character traits, helping others, etc.  However, every woman wants to feel attractive on the outside too and that’s okay!  Going through life changes such as growing older, an illness, becoming pregnant {yep, that’s me!}, or gaining weight {me also!} can make us feel less than attractive…to put it mildly.  I was thinking of a few ways that I try to make myself feel more beautiful and I thought I would share them with you in case you need to feel more beautiful today.  Remember that you are beautiful, even when you don’t feel like it!

1. Have something sparkly.
Don’t tell your husband I’m telling you to go out and buy diamonds {Although that might not be a bad idea either! ha!}.  Keep something sparkly around you.  Lip gloss, nail polish, a sparkly pen, etc.  If you’re not into sparkles, then surround yourself with your favorite colors and textures.

In school, I was always terrible in English class.  Literature was great, spelling was okay, but grammar was pitiful.  {I can see all of you grammar folk shaking your head in agreement.  I know, I’m sorry!}  Most of my school notebooks were plain white or black but my English 101 notebook was beautiful.  My definition of beautiful changed from year to year but it was always something that gave me a little smile inside whenever I looked at it.  Surround yourself with things that make you smile.

2.  Make someone else smile every day.
I used to have a friend whose goal was to make someone smile every day.  This was the end all be all goal of his life and while I certainly didn’t agree with that I did take note of his personal challenge.  Obviously, it had an impact on me as I’m still thinking about it and writing about it 10 years later.  When you do something for someone else it makes you feel good about yourself.  That’s not why you should do nice things for others but it’s a nice side effect and it’s a good habit to get into.

3. Smile, smile, smile.
Studies have proven that smiling people are more attractive.  That’s a good enough reason to smile, isn’t it?  Plus, I read somewhere that your brain gets an instant mood boost when your facial muscles contract and that boost of happiness is maintained as people smile back at you.

That reminds me of a poster that was in our high school cafeteria that read, “Smile.  Start an epidemic.”  If smiling doesn’t come natural to you practice while you’re alone and then practice in front of others at least once a day.  Try it and see if you don’t feel more beautiful and confident.

4. Work out.
I know people are groaning as they read this step.  How? Well, because I’m groaning too.  I don’t like working out, at least in the formal sense of the word.  I don’t own tennis shoes or yoga pants.  Crazy, right?  I like music though and dancing silly with my daughter, I like taking exploring walks with her, I like swimming, and I like shopping.  Those aren’t typically things people consider exercise but every bit of activity helps keep you healthy and boost your spirits.  Any safe activity that raises your heart rate is exercise in my book.

When you exercise it gives you a spring in your step.  You’ll smile easier, you’ll feel good about yourself knowing you’re taking care of your body, and your face will just glow.

5. Surround yourself with smells.
Smells are the biggest triggers of memory.  The sense of smell is powerful.  Surround yourself with scents that make you feel good.  Wear your favorite perfume {discount perfume is okay too}, light a candle that embodies the current season, or keep your favorite Wallflower plugged in at work.  Be mindful of those around you that may have a sensitive sense of smell but if you can, allow yourself embrace different scents.  Wearing perfume will help you feel better about yourself and smelling it through the day will make you smile a little on the inside.

Those are my five favorite ways to make myself feel more beautiful.

What about you?  What do you do to make yourself feel more beautiful?  

Breast Cancer Awareness Beauty Products – Shop for the Cure!

Breast Cancer Awareness Beauty Products

Each October I have mixed feelings when I see the color pink flooding the stores.  On one hand, I think it’s great that Breast Cancer Awareness is raising money and reminding people to get their regular check-ups.  On the other hand, I am sickened by all of the companies that promote a pink item in October and donate 0% of the proceeds to Breast Cancer Awareness.  Because I like to be an informed shopper and I like beauty products I’ve created a round up of beauty products that donate a portion of the proceeds {or a set $ amount} to breast cancer awareness or research foundations.  I do have my affiliate links included in this post because it took me hours to research and put together.  Trust me though, it won’t cost you a penny more if you buy anything after clicking the links on my site.

I have a few dozen more to add but I’ll get started with the beauty products that donate to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Check back on this post tomorrow for even more beauty products that “pay it forward.”

Breast Cancer Research Foundation:

Bobbi Brown Breast Cancer AwarenessThis year Bobbi Brown is donating $10 for every French Pink Set ($45) they sell.  You’ll get a lovely pink shade that can blend with many different skin tones and it comes with a brush too. The $10 of the purchase will go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

Estee Lauder Breast Cancer AwarenessEsteé Lauder is donating 100% of the profits from the Dream Perfume Compact ($50) to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. The embossed compact is filled with the popular Pleasures fragrance.

Clinique Breast Cancer AwarenessClinique’s Dramatically Different Lotion ($38) recently got a formula makeover to give even more powerful hydration.  This new moisturizer comes with a pink ribbon key chain and with each purchase $10 will go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

själ skincare
The Själ skincare’s Rose Aura Cleansing Set ($140) will donate 10% of each purchase to The National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Sole Goddess Breast Cancer Awareness30% of each purchase from the Sole Goddess Limited-Edition Blister Protection Balm ($10-$19) will be donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation this month.
Breast Cancer Awareness Brushes
With each sale of Sonia Kashuk’s Proudly Pink 5-piece Purse Brush Set ($16) 15% of the purchase price goes to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Coach Breast Cancer AwarenessCoach’s Signature Scent ($68) is going with a colorful design for the cure. 20% of the proceeds are going to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation this month.
La Mer Breast Cancer AwarenessWith every purchase of the limited-edition La Mer Hand Treatment ($40) $10 will go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Smashbox Breast Cancer Awareness
The very popular Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer ($36) is donating $5 of each purchase to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Sephora Brush Set Breast Cancer Awareness
Sephora has released a limited-edition five-piece brush set in a beautiful pink snakeskin travel bag ($36).  $1 of the sale of each set goes toward the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
AHAVA Breast Cancer Awareness
Ahava has a limited edition hand cream which is on sale from $31.50 for only $21 during the month of October.  Plus, 10% of the proceeds are being donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation:
Matrix Breast Cancer Awareness
MATRIX is offering a selection of hairsprays for women with any and every hair type ($11-$16). MATRIX is providing 10% of sales to The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.
Tweezerman Breast Cancer Awareness
My absolute favorite tweezer brand, Tweezerman has produced a limited edition “Precision in Pink” set ($22) and $1 of every sale will go to the Susan G. Komen Foundation as well as to the CEW Cancer and Careers organizations.  
Crane & Canopy Breast Cancer Awareness
Crane & Canopy Hot Pink Eye Pillow ($12) will donate 50% of proceeds this month to the Susan G. Komen For the Cure.
Leila Lou
Leila Lou by Rosie Jane Body Lotion ($29), candle, and two separate fragrances is giving 20% of it’s proceeds to the Susan G. Komen For the Cure.

Free Escada Perfume Sample

Escada

Right now you can sign up for a free Escada Perfume sample.

Thanks, Mojo Savings!

Soulgasm: Perfume Review

Soulgasm

I was recently given the opportunity to review a new perfume called Soulgasm.

Here are the details:

Soulgasm is the first fragrance by Sasha Varon.  It claims to be a luxe and sexy perfume.

Head/Top Notes: succulent peach, Anjou pear, South African freesia, ripe black currant
Heart: wild, night-blooming jasmine, delicate Eurasian lily, multi-faceted woodberry
Base Notes: clean musk, warm amber, sweet French vanilla

My thoughts:

Even though I only received a tiny sample to review the full size bottle comes with an adorable black vintage atomizer (in other words a sprayer or spritzer).

The price for 2.4 oz. is $65.00 and that seems a bit pricey to me but depending on your budget that might not be a factor.

It’s a playful scent for an evening out that isn’t too fruity or too heavy.

For more information or to purchase visit sashavaron.com.

Disclosure: I received a sample to facilitate my review but it in no way affected my opinion.  No compensation was received.

Free Sample of Avril Lavigne’s Forbidden Rose Perfume

Avril Lavigne Forbidden Rose Perfume

Sign up to receive a free sample of Avril Lavigne’s new perfume, Forbidden Rose.

 

Update:  Unfortunately, this sample is no longer available but you can still score some discounted bottles of Forbidden Rose on Amazon!

Free Sample of Halle Berry’s Perfume

Get a free sample of Halle Berry’s new perfume.

Free Sample Bottle of Celine Dion’s Perfume Sensational

Get a free sample bottle of Celine Dion’s fragrance Sensational. Allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.