Category Archives: Beauty Review

The Best of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bonanza

I don’t know if any of you have made it to Trader Joe’s this year, but dear lord, they are killing it with the seasonal pumpkin overload! While most of it isn’t vegan, there are quite a few veg friendly items that are definitely worth a try. Of course, I bought all the vegan items to indulge my pumpkin fanaticism and they are all tasty (except for the body butter, I didn’t taste that. … yet.)

vegan seasonal treats

  1. Pumpkin Joe-Joes- Let me say that these are probably my most favorite Trader Joe’s treats ever. They are like Oreos, but the vanilla cookie ones, with pumpkin filling. Can I repeat that? PUMPKIN FILLING! Ok now that you heard me, let me tell you how amazingly yummy these are. I bought one box and it was gone in a day. Then I bought the second box. It was gone in hours. (Husband and I are not pigs I swear, we just gorge ourselves once in a while. No big deal.)
  2. Pumpkin Spice Roobios Tea- This is a smooth, spicy, tea that’s great for winding down from a long day. This tea is a great substitute to those pumpkin spice lattes that everyone loves and is especially good for people who are avoiding coffee or caffeine. I like to brew it and then add some almond milk so it kinda feels latte-y.
  3. Country Pumpkin Spice Granola- Eat it as a snack. Eat it for breakfast. Eat it hot. Eat it cold. You can even throw this on top of some yogurt. I tried it all ways and its fabulous.
  4. Pumpkin Body Butter- Ok, Trader Joe’s is not the first place I go for lotions and potions but I saw this by the register (damn impulse buys) and I decided to check it out. After a quick check to make sure it was vegan and cruelty-free, it ended up in my basket. It really smells mostly of cinnamon and nutmeg but it feels luxurious when you slather it on. This is a super silkily, delicious fragrance that will have you smelling spicy all day long.

Have you tried any Trader Joe’s seasonal goodies? Which ones are your favorites?


September Vegan Cuts Beauty Box



It’s time for another amazing Vegan Cuts Beauty box, Snuggle friends. This is a really great program that allows you to sample 5-7 vegan, cruelty-free, toxin-free beauty and self-care products for only $20 a month. This is such a great value because many of these boxes have at least 1 full size product mixed in with the samples.  It’s like a little gift you can give yourself monthly.

Without further ado, Here’s your September Vegan Cuts Beauty Box:

  1. Clark’s Botanicals Deluxe Deep Moisture Mask– This stuff is amazing. The smell is incredibly soothing and the way your skin feels after doing a treatment makes you want to rub your face on people to show them how smooth and soft it is. This mask is made from algae, comfrey root, jasmine and green tea.
  2. Only Goodness Inside Deodorant- This is a good deodorant that will keep you stink free all day. They use organic food grade ingredients that are gluten-free, vegan, irritation-free and best of all, stain-free. It goes on like a lotion and dries quickly making it great for peeps on the go.
  3. Lunatick Cosmetic Labs- Oh and I love me some eyeshadow. I mean I’m kind of obsessive with it, especially funky colors. So this was a nice little surprise this month. I received this loose shadow in Dr. Jekyll, which is this amazing bronzy, gold shade with silver sparkles. This is a really awesome shade that can go for both day and nighttime wear. (And I got lots of compliments on it)
  4. Derma E Microdermabrasion Scrub- This is a very nice scrub that uses volcanic sand and Dead Sea salt to gently buff away dead skin for amazingly soft and smooth skin. Dead Sea salt and volcanic sand? Sounds tre chic and spa like.
  5. Suncoat Mascara- A natural, sugar based mascara that is excellent for sensitive eyes. Suncoat uses mineral pigments and vitamin E but leaves out the toxins to keep your peepers healthy. This is a nice, thick mascara that glides on smoothly and lasts throughout a long work day.

That about wraps it up. These are some really great products and you should get in on the next box. So go do it. Now. You won’t regret it.

Vegan Cuts Beauty Box Review: June Box

Hey there, Snuggle Friend’s it’s that time again! Where the eff did the time go? Have you checked out the Vegan Cuts Beauty Box yet? I mean, really, you should. It’s an awesome little gift to yourself or others (sharing is caring!) When you sign up for a subscription, you get a box with an assortment of 4-7 sample and full size vegan beauty products for only $20 bucks a month. I know, totally cool, right? I’ve discovered some really cool stuff through this program and it really helps with finding vegan beauty for reasonable price.


So, Let’s move onto what I got for June.

  1. Superchic Laquer by Wonder Beauty Products- I received this totally awesome, handmade nail lacquer in a pretty, sparkly blue hue named Coming Unblued ( a good summer shade!). This polish drys quick and smoothly, which is always a bonus in my book. This polish is the mega 5 free and has no toxic chemicals. Check out their Etsy store for all of their super cute colors!
  2. Pacifica Natural Eye Pencil- I received this pencil in Fringe, a mocha brown, that goes on super smooth. I usually only buy black liquid eyeliner but I really like how this pencil is very easily applicable. This little pencil is also packed full of nutrients that help protect and nourish your sensitive eye area. And it’s waterproof!! Pacifica is a cool brand that you can order online or find in the Whole Body section at your local Whole Foods.
  3. NYL Velvet Transformative Serum– Need I say more? I do? Ok, I will. This is a fabulous little product that is full of vitamin C, antioxidants, anti-wrinkle and anti-inflammatory properties. Yes, my lovelies, this is a great serum for protecting your face. After I put it on, my skin feels so silky and radiant. NYL is made in a kitchen with amazing vegan, eco-friendly, and organic ingredients. Bottom line is: I really love this pick.
  4. LA Fresh Nail Polish Remover Wipes- These wipes are eco-friendly and one wipe works for 10 nails. Of course, I put these to the sparkly nail polish test, which is the toughest test of all. It did pretty good against the test. The scent is so much better than regular acetone nail polish and your nails feel conditioned afterwards.
  5. Lip Glosserie Moisturizing Lip Balm in Asain Pear- OMG. This is one tasty lip balm. The Lip Glosserie is a small company ran out of a kitchen in Austin, TX and they do an amazing job. This lip balm goes on smooth and gives you just a little shimmer. It looks really perrttty on and it tastes and smells amazing.
  6. Jane Carter Solution Hair Butter- Full of moisturizers, this is a great little product for the summer (especially for those of us desert dwellers!) It gets rid of those frizzes and keeps your locks looking lovely. Just remember, a little bit goes a long way!

That’s it. Now, get your keester on over to and get your beauty box. Seriously. Do it. (Be one of the 1st of 300 to sign up for a new subscription in time for the July box and receive a bonus gift!)

*An added note, lovelies. This is not a sponsored post, I pay for my subscription and give my honest opinion on all products.

Vegan Cuts May Beauty Box Review

So in an effort to save a little cash, I had cancelled my Beauty Box. I know, the horror. Than I saw the preview video for the May Vegan Cuts Beauty Box and I was like, “Dumb.” So, obviously, I re-signed up for it. And you should too. It’s such a great way to try vegan, organic, cruelty-free beauty products for 20 smackaroos a month.

vegan cruelty free beauty

May’s box was the most valuable yet with 3 full size products all worth a pretty penny. So let’s get to it.

  1. Skin Again Vanish– So this was a super exciting product to try. This is actually what clinched me re-signing up for my box. Turning 30 is hard and after rocking out hard in my 20s my body could use some TLC, especially my skin. Skin Again was born after the CEO, Sherrie, was severely burned in an accident. She began using a lotion that was gifted to her that totally saved her skin from scarring. She was inspired by this experience and used her knowledge of holistic elements to create these beautiful lotions for healing and damage prevention. I received a full size sample of Vanish, which helps diminish scars, cellulite, and stretch marks. Let me tell you, this shit works. Knowing the science behind cellulite, I was really skeptical but I have noticed a big difference in how my thighs look now. (Sorry, no before and after pictures. Nobody gets to see those.) So, if you are looking for a healing lotion like this it is worth every penny.
  2. Lauren Brooke Cosmetiques Lash Strengthening Mascara– I was hoping to receive a mascara in one of the Beauty Boxes at some point. Lauren Brooke Cometiques uses natural and certified organic ingredients in all of their products. This mascara is a blend of vitamins, herbs, and extracts that help stimulate hair growth and prevent hair loss.  This is a good mascara, there’s no flaky, runny stuff that you can sometimes get with mascara. It goes on clean and comes off easily. I was using Gabriel Cosmetics Mascara but I will be purchasing this as a replacement.
  3. Gourmet Body Treats Raw Finishing Powder– This was another full size goodie. Gourmet Body Treats is a company that was created because the owner has a skin condition that prevented her from using many beauty products. Gourmet Body Treats uses vegan, organic, and eco-friendly sourced ingredients to make their awesome products. And they have super cute packaging too! This finishing powder is awesome. It definitely helps keep my face from getting shiny and oily in the desert summer heat. This is a sheer powder that is great for all skin types and should be incorporated as the last step in your make-up routine.
  4. Tallulah Jane Halona Perfume– In general I am not a fan of perfume, I’m more of an essential body oil kinda of girl. I am also more of a fan of light floral scents over anything else but I gave this a fair try. This is a light scent that is great for summer and is a good scent for anyone who likes a strong citrus scent with spicy notes.
  5. Sevi Blue Yarrow Salt Salt Texturing Spray I am a huge fan of the boho type look and Sea Salt Spray is a staple for my hair. So when I saw this little gem, I did jig of glee. This is a good texturing spray that gives you light body and defined curls without getting your hair all crunchy. The best part about this is you just spray, run your fingers through your hair and run. Low maintenance is totally my style!
  6. Goddess Garden Organics SPF 30 Sunny Body Sunscreen– A natural sunscreen that protects your skin from damaging broad spectrum UVA/UVB rays. It’s very light weight and moisturizing, so it goes well on your face. (They do make separate facial sunscreen.) This sunscreen is all natural, vegan, non-gmo and is package in recyclable containers. I try not to spend too much time out in the sun, especially in the summertime (the desert is effing hoTT!!!!!!) but I did use it for a day out and it didn’t leave me greasy or have that strong sunscreen smell which is a huge bonus in my book.
  7. Gabriel Lip Gloss Treatment 8 in Champagne– I have been using Gabriel for a while now mainly because this is something I can pick up at Whole Foods. This is a nice gloss that’s not too goopy and conditions and moisturizes your puckers. As far as lip products go, I usually just use chapstick but I will bust out the occasional gloss when I’m feeling sassy. This is an unusual color for me, so it is taking some getting use to, but it reminds me of something totally retro. And I love retro, so I’ll keep giving it a try.

That’s it folks. I hope you’ll give the Beauty Box and some of these amazing products a try!

What are your favorite beauty products? 

Lazy Sunday Funday Weekly Wrap-Up: 4/6/2014

vegan, cats, beauty, vegan food

It’s another Lazy Sunday Funday! So glad you could join me, friend! This Lazy Sunday Funday I made brunch for my husband and I, then I plan on reading a good book and enjoying what’s left of our beautiful weather, since Summer is Coming (cue dramatic Game of Thrones music here.)

What are your plans for Lazy Sunday Funday?

Hot Topic of The Week: Happy 80th Birthday, Jane Goodall!

Along with Diane Fossey, she’s been one of my heroes since I was a kid and has been an inspiration to yours truly (she is partially the reason why I have a degree in Anthropology.) Jane Goodall is well-known for her amazing work studying chimpanzees, spanning from 1960 to 1983 work. Now that she has retired from her biological studies, she is now focused on conservationist activism. Way to rock it, Jane!

Vegan Product of The Week: Concrete Minerals Super Pigmented Eyeshadow

Yes, this week I’m changing it up and presenting a beauty product this week. When I was looking to veganize my make-up bag, I was relieved to stumble upon Concrete Minerals.

concrete minerals vegan, cruelty-free makeup

Colors from top: Ruse, Frost, Arsenic

Concrete Minerals makes 100% cruelty-free, gluten-free, preservative-free makeup at a price you can afford. The variety of eyeshadow colors can’t be beat and it will definitely appeal to the punk rocker that lives inside you. No really, now I’m off to find my plaid pants, studded belt and then dye my hair a funky color. Now where is that Sex Pistols cd?

Belly Rub Approval Rating: 5 out of 5 Belly Rubs


What’s Cooking in The House of Snuggles This Week:

Breakfast: Oatmeal and Banana Muffins

Yes, it’s oatmeal again. Good thing there are about 1,000 ways to make oatmeal so it stays interesting. This weekend, I got wild and crazy and created a simple and delicious vegan banana muffin as well. Stay tuned for the recipe this week!

Lunch: Fiesta Pita

Whole grain pita, guacamole, greens, tomatoes, red onions, and black beans make a simple and delicious sandwich to brighten up your mid-day meal.

Dinner: Spaghetti Marinara

Simple, easy, delicious. This is my go to dish with money is tight and time is limited. To prevent boredom from setting in, you can get really creative and add all kinds of things like tofu, Portobello mushrooms, and fresh basil.

Snack: Oranges, Oranges, Oranges

My co-worker has an orange tree that is very plentiful this year. He gifted me a giant bag of fresh oranges so I will be getting creative over the next week on how to use them up. Any suggestions are welcome!!

Peaceful Dumpling Contribution For This Week: Three Furry Friends You Should Consider Adopting

This week I discuss 3 types of fur babies that find themselves in shelters and are often overlooked. If you are considering adopting a new furry family member please check out this piece. These animals end up in shelters and are among the first to be euthanized because they are deemed “unadoptable.”  I find this an unacceptable term since these animals have so much to give to the family that is willing to adopt them.

That’s it Snuggle Friends! Have a beautiful Sunday! Peace, love, and cupcakes 🙂

Cruelty-Free Beauty

Hi Snuggle Friends, Happy Monday!!!!

Today I want to talk a little bit about cruelty-free cosmetics and household products. As you may know, the U.S has introduced a bill that would ban animal testing on cosmetics. The testing procedures that they put animals through are horrific and any person with a conscience and a heart should be bothered by the fact that we haven’t already evolved and banned animal testing already. Since the testing process is so terrible and un-snuggly(it brings tears of fury to my eyes), you can just follow this link if you want to learn more because that isn’t really what my focus is for today.

So, if you are vegan, you probably already buy everything cruelty-free, which is awesome because money talks, especially to big corporations. Now if you are transitioning to a veg life, cruelty-free theoretically means that no part of the product has been tested on animals. Unfortunately, there is a lot of wiggle room with this term and companies still use it to market products even if they did use some type of animal testing in the process of development. All you need to do is look for is the “leaping bunny” symbol to ensure that your product is 100% cruelty-free. This symbol is used on products that follow the strict standards of the CICC (Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics) cruelty-free label. The Leaping Bunny Program assures that any company that participates has been held to the highest standards and that no part of their product has been tested on animals.

Now, if you want to go a step further, then you should be buying vegan and cruelty-free products. That way you can assure that your beauty routine isn’t harmful to you or to any of our furry friends. It might seem like a no-brainer but Vegan beauty products don’t use any animal ingredients which includes ingredients, such as, honey, milk, beeswax, etc. You need to be careful, know your ingredients, and read labels to double-check that your product is vegan. Some scientific terms can mask animal ingredients, such as lanolin (which I had no idea what that was until I looked it up.) You can find vegan beauty products in a number of places. Normally local health food stores will carry them and there is a plethora of websites that sell vegan goods and body care.

Really, veganizing your beauty routine comes down to being a smart consumer. Do your research and see what’s out there. There are a lot of good resources (including here) that will guide you through the process of switching out your make-up, body care, and household products.  I know these products can be expensive but they are beneficial for you, for animals, and for the environment since many vegan beauty products are made from natural and/or organic ingredients. I didn’t go and throw out all of my beauty products at once and then run out and buy a bunch of vegan products to replace them. That would be crazy but as you run out of things start replacing items with vegan items. That way you aren’t digging yourself into a financial hole trying to be a perfect vegan.

Resources to help you get started:

Leaping Bunny Shopping Guide

Cosmetic Ingredient Review

iTunes or Android App for Cruelty-Free Shopping (There, now it is super easy and you can reference it on the go.)

Vegan Beauty Review (This is a really good blog and she covers just about anything you can think of.)

My Favorite Sites for Vegan Beauty Products: 

Vegan Cuts

Vegan Essentials

Beauty Without Cruelty

Alternative Outfitters

What are some of your favorite vegan, cruelty-free products and where do you buy them?

*I’m not paid to endorse these, I just really like these sites and I find them useful

January Vegan Cuts Beauty Box Review

Alright, I am so excited to go over January’s Vegan Cuts Beauty Box. Are you excited to see what I have to show you? I know you are. Ok, good. Let’s get started. This month’s box of joy was packed full of skin care goodies to help you through those gosh darn dry winter months.

vegan cuts beauty box

Introducing Vegan Cuts Beauty Box!!

1. Aubrey Organics Detangle and Shine Spray for Fine to Medium Hair It was so perfect that I happened to receive this little gem in my box. I happen to have fine hair that tangles super easily. I sprayed it on damp hair and it worked beautifully! Using organic quinoa protein, this product smoothes and revitalizes hair while protecting it from heat damage.

2. Ofra Cosmetics liquid lipstick As soon as I opened my box I put this sweet smelling lip stuff on. The color is so perfect for my skin tone and it smells like vanilla. It has a gorgeous shine and kept my lips soft and smooth. It is rich in antioxidants and vitamin E to keep your lips nourished all day.

3. Primal Pit Paste in Thyme-Lemongrass This stuff is the shit. This is my first try with a deodorant cream. It is so hard to find natural deodorants that work. I put this on in the morning and then I proceeded about my busy Saturday. I stopped to smell my pits along the way (TMI? Maybe, but how else to do check if it’s working or not?) Anyways, so far, so good. So unlike my normal Saturday, certain events happened and, I thought that one of my cats had escaped and gone missing. Now mind you, this is apt to send any fur baby mama into a hysterical panic. As I ran around my neighborhood searching for my little love, I started to work up a sweat (I live in the desert and we are having unseasonably warm winter). Eventually, I found him hiding under my bed. So after I finished having my heart attack, I remembered to check my pits. They still smell good. Bingo! I think I just found my new deodorant.

4. Dew Puff This is probably my favorite from this month’s box. It’s pure plant fiber sponge. They are made from konhac root, a plant native to Asia. This sponge has the natural ability to break down dirt and promote circulation and rejuvenate skin. I used this bad boy after I got home from work and oh man, was it something special. I used it with cleanser since I needed to take my make-up off anyway, but it left my skin feeling soft and a little bit glowy. These sponges also last up to 3 months so that’s even better! I’ll probably be purchasing one of these because they are freaking awesome.

5. Biao Beauty Rejuvenating Night Cream This is a light weight cream that feels as smooth as silk. I rubbed in into my skin after my experience with the dew puff. My skin felt hydrated and super soft. This cream contains babassu and olive oil to boost collagen levels and repair your skin to keep you youthful.

6. Better Botanicals Ayurvedic Skincare– I received samples of the Jojoba Clarifying Scrub and the Coriander Balancing Cleanser. The Coriander Balancing Cleanser had a wonderful light scent and was very gentle with my sensitive skin. It’s pretty awesome because coriander is a natural anti-inflammatory and natural anti-bacterial agent, so it works great for acne (score!) The  Jojoba Clarifying Scrub worked beautifully at exfoliating and is gentle enough that I would use it every night.

Alright, lovelies, that’s it. If you haven’t checked out the Beauty Box yet, I suggest you get your tushies over to Vegan Cuts and check it out!