POPSUGAR Must Have Box: May 2017.

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Good Morning! In just a few more days I’ll be 10,000 feet in the air and en route to fabulous Las Vegas (and then San Diego) for a long, extended weekend getaway! I’m excited- and I’ve been getting things in order at work while simultaneously attempting to start my packing so that I’m prepared for my very early flight on Friday morning and can truly de-stress while I’m gone!

Before I post the results of my pre-vacay shopping spree splurge and get ready for take-off, however- I wanted to share what I recently received in my May POPSUGAR “Must Have” box! The contents not only featured some of my favorite items- but also had some great gifts I got to pass along, too!

May’s theme/inspirations centered around home and family- presumably in celebration of Mother’s Day. BE GOOD & FEEL GOOD, FAMILY, MEMORIES, HOME and GRATITUDE were the big ones- and once again I think POPSUGAR perfectly managed to capture the themes with the items that were included.

Let’s take a look!

I can never have enough greeting cards on hand, especially since there always seems to be a special occasion happening at any given point. Weddings, graduations, birthdays, anniversaries- you name it and I see about 3-4 of them per week! I thought these three blank cards from Nicely Noted would be a lovely addition to my collection of stand-by stationary since they’re all really cute. One is a simple “thank you!” card, another is for a Summer birthday, and the third- which might be hard to read in the photo- is simply to say hello!

I love strawberry-flavored anything, and I especially love muffins- so I was thrilled when I saw this all-in-one muffin mix from Southern Culture Artisan Foods in this month’s “Must Have” box! With everything included in the kit (which is reasonably priced at $7.99 per kit)– I know I’m going to have so much fun making these this week and even more fun eating them!

POPSUGAR always includes the best candles in the subscription box game. They really do take it to a new level that I feel other monthly/annual services may have a hard time keeping up with. Case in point- this divine and beachy-scented candle from TOCCA– which transported me to my favorite seaside spot in Southern California the first time I caught a whiff of it as I was going through the box for the first time.

It just smells so fresh and clean and I can’t get enough of it! I know I’m going to be buying another one ASAP once this one is gone.

I have a lot of artwork around my house, but not too many photographs- so this lovely 4 x 6″ frame from Swing Design was gifted to my mother so she could put a SUPER unflattering recent photo of me she had in her possession in it (even though I begged her not to.) The frame is simple and looks nice pretty much anywhere since it matches any color scheme/pattern- and it’s currently found a home on my mother’s mantle for all to see….

…. Lord help me.

My second favorite item in May’s “Must Have” box was this chic and durable cuff crafted by Samantha Faye exclusively for POPSUGAR. Inscribed with the inspirational words “Be Good. Do Good. Feel Good.” this adjustable bracelet sits comfortably on my wrist and pairs well with nearly everything in my wardrobe. I’ve been wearing it solo or stacked with some of my other cuffs/bracelets lately and getting a load of compliments on it!

Finally, my absolute favorite item in May’s “Must Have” box was the new color-changing, skin-tone complimenting lipstick from Lipstick Queen.While it indeed looks yellow in the tube- once applied, this creamy formula transforms into a custom (and ultra flattering) coral shade that smooths and hydrates your lips!

I know it’s still technically Spring and I don’t start wearing coral/peach shades until we’re well into the Summer- but I can’t stop applying this stuff! It’s so cool and it looks and feels great when it’s on! This is another item from this month’s “Must Have” box that I’ve been getting tons of compliments on!

POPSUGAR did include some digital goodies, too- including a 15% off voucher for Lipstick Queen and a promo for Gentlemans Box– which I assume is like POPSUGAR but for guys, instead. I have a feeling I’ll be passing that one along to a friend and keeping the Lipstick Queen one for myself!

Overall- I absolutely loved this month’s “Must Have” box! There was a little bit of everything included (and I love variety like that!) and each item was so well made and such high quality that I made back the money my subscription costs x3!

I’m looking forward to seeing what’s in store for June!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: April 2017.

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Good Morning and Happy Friday, y’all! I’m getting ready to put in a busy day at work- filled with meetings and phone calls- before I head out with friends to kick-start my weekend. Before I launch right into that morning coffee (and paperwork), though- I wanted to share the goodies that were included in my recently received POPSUGAR “Must Have Box” for the month of April.

It was a good one, for sure! I had a lot of fun going through it.

With Spring finally in the air- POPSUGAR’s themes/inspirations for April’s box weren’t surprising: RESET, NATURAL, HEALING, CLEAN, GROW and SPIRITUAL were the words each item was based around- and I think they hit the mark (again!) this time!

I can honestly use any help I can get when it comes to securing a full night’s sleep. Even with evening yoga, a warm bath and/or an eye mask- I still tend to toss and turn some nights, and then other nights- my dog jumps up on the bed ready to play at 3 a.m. I often wake up in a fog- so when I saw these lavender-infused sachets from Tonic Australia– I was pretty excited to put one near my pillow so I could pass out in peace.

Not only do these smell lovely and are immediately calming- but the pattern on the fabric is really pretty, too!

With all the cooking and baking experiments I conduct in my kitchen- receiving any item designed to make the process easier for me is always a welcomed addition in my home. I really like the look and feel of this bamboo cutting board from Morning Culture–  and I know it’s going to come in handy this weekend when I’m preparing an array of meals to bring to the office with me next week.

I currently have a small pot of bamboo on my desk, and at first I thought it was enough- but then I received this crystal and sand terrarium kit from MakersKit in April’s “Must Have Box” and now I know that I’m going to have to make some room for this when it’s completed, too! There’s so many ways you can rearrange the crystal, preserved moss and sand included in the kit to your liking- but all the combinations are beautiful.

I thought this was such a unique item to include and I’m excited to put it together!

As much as I always love the snacks POPSUGAR occasionally includes in their boxes- I was a little skeptical about this roasted corn snack from Nourish Snacks– but I gotta’ say: they’re pretty good! With just the right amount of a spicy kick to them, these crunchy kernels made for a pretty satisfying afternoon snack at my office. I browsed Nourish Snack’s website during some recent down time and it looks like they have a ton of other goodies to munch on, as well!

Okay, first things first- how cute is the design of this bottle? I love it! Secondly, this moisturizing body wash from The Cottage Greenhouse is pretty awesome. Not only does it smell really good, but it’s loaded with vitamins, carrot (and coconut!) oil and cocoa butter so my skin always feel really soft, smooth and refreshed after every shower- which is perfect this time of year when I’m spending more time outdoors and may not be loading on the lotions as much as I do in the Fall and Winter.

I think this might be my favorite item in this month’s “Must Have Box”!

One might think getting toothpaste and dental floss in a subscription box is a little weird- but I think it’s great since it saves me a trip to the pharmacy to stock up. Infused with coconut oil and with a subtle fruit flavor- I’ve been really liking how clean this floss from Cocofloss makes my mouth feel and how gentle but effective this freshening toothpaste from Sensodyne is.

It’s a pretty great combination to have handy!

Finally, my e-coupon for April’s “Must Have Box” came courtesy of The Cottage Greenhouse- who made that sensational body wash pictured above! I plan on stocking up on more of their supplies, so this 30% voucher is going to be used REAL quick!

It goes without saying that I really enjoyed April’s POPSUGAR box- and each item fit the themes/inspirations brilliantly. I’m a huge fan of the body wash and the terrarium, and the roasted corn kernels were pretty good, too!

‘Til next month!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: March 2017.

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It’s that time of the month again- the time when I get what I can only describe as “Christmas in a crate” and my POPSUGAR Must-Have box arrives at my doorstep. Despite still being in cleanup mode from Winter Storm Stella rolling through my neighborhood a few days ago and downing power lines, clogging up the streets and generally causing an overall mess for everyone and anyone- getting my Must-Have box definitely brightened my mood and lifted my spirits.

If only it could help with my shoulder and back pain from shoveling so much.

Anyway- let’s take a look at what I got!

It doesn’t feel like it this week- but Spring really *IS* right around the corner. Keeping that in mind, POPSUGAR ultimately tried to make their March collection as festive as possible. This month’s themes/inspirations were: SPRING FEVER, PLAYFUL, TRAVEL, NOSTALGIA, CARNIVAL and SNAPSHOT.

It sounds like an unusual combination- but I promise- it worked!

I have about 120 pictures stored away in my phone and on my laptop that I’ve been on the fence about where and how to place them around my home, so when I received this adorable photo album from Kate Spade (a brand I loooooove)– I knew my problem had been solved. I’m already in the process of organizing the pictures I’m going to place in here- 95% of them being photos of my dog, Oliver- and I plan on leaving it on my coffee table for my guests to flip through when they come over!

I wasn’t sure how the “CARNIVAL” theme for March’s Must-Have box was going to be incorporated until I spotted this bag of cinnamon-churro flavored marshmallows from SmashMallow. Gluten-free and made from all natural ingredients like 100% organic sugar- these things taste pretty incredible and definitely give me a local fair/circus vibe.

I checked out SmashMallow’s website and I’m already dying to try their toasted coconut & pineapple marshmallows. Best. Snack. Ever.

The item I had received a spoiler for via POPSUGAR’s e-mail alerts was this creamy highlighting stick (for the eye area) from Thrive Causemetics. I was previously unfamiliar with the brand, but since receiving my Must-Have box- I’ve done a little more research into them- and I am obsessed.

This brand is not only vegan and cruelty-free- but with every product purchased- they donate one to a woman battling cancer and/or domestic violence. Having previously worked in cosmetics long before my career in law and insurance- I can tell you that something as simple as a swipe of new lipstick or mascara can brighten a woman’s day when she’s going through a hard time. I love that this company keeps that simple pleasure going strong.

Perhaps my favorite item in March’s Must-Have box- I am head over heels in love with this see-through pink/coral cross-body bag from Stephanie Johnson. I’m waiting for the warmer weather to start using it because it has a very Spring/Summer feel and look to it- but it’s going to come in handy on those days I’m traveling light and just want something small and simple to keep my essentials in.

And I’m sure the plastic material is going to be pretty nifty on rainy days. You can just wipe it off and go!

A while back, POPSUGAR had sent me a bright yellow and blue plastic lunch box- a similar size to this one- that I used constantly, and while that box is still in good enough condition despite multiple washes and me being clumsy more than once and dropping it- I’ve been looking for a replacement to bring to work. This watermelon patterned lunch box (made from a heavier material and a little more durable) from Sunnylife is so cute I can barely stand it.

I love simple, adorable designs like this!

Finally- POPSUGAR included a couple of vouchers in March’s Must-Have box. The first (and I blocked out the code to prevent theft)– 20% off of an order from Smash Mallow (hello, toasted coconut and pineapple marshmallows!) and the second, a $25 gift card to Velvet Eyewear! Now, VE’s sunglasses are admittedly a bit on the pricier side- but they do have a “Trends” section that has some more reasonably priced glasses where this card can be applied. I have a feeling I’ll be treating myself this weekend!

Overall, March’s Must-Have box was another hit. I loved everything I received and thought it all went perfectly with the theme/inspirations for the month. I’m so thrilled with POPSUGAR for this one!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: February 2017.

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Good Morning! I hope you all had a lovely Valentine’s Day with your special someone- or if you’re newly single like I am- you enjoyed a day of self-love and much-deserved pampering. Indeed, yesterday marked the first Valentine’s Day in a couple of years where I wasn’t partnered up with a boyfriend- so I made sure to spoil myself with roses, some decadent chocolate cake, a little wine- and a good action movie to round out my night after I had left work.

I also found use for some of the things I received in this month’s POPSUGAR “Must Have” box, which arrived over this past weekend. Oh, how I adore this subscription service. As is tradition- here’s a round-up of the goodies I got!


With February being predominantly about Valentine’s Day- it came as no surprise that the themes/inspirations for the items included in this month’s box fell into the lovey-dovey category: FLIRTY, LOVE, SWEETS, POSITIVE IMPACT, and ROMANCE were the driving force behind one of the fanciest “Must Have” collections I’ve ever received to date!


First things first, I was completely blown away by the quality (and the $98 price tag!) of this handwoven fold-over clutch from Tribe Alive. It’s absolutely gorgeous and compliments every outfit and ensemble I own- which is perfect for those days I want to travel light and not have to swing my usual go-to bag over my shoulder over and over with every other movement I make.

Tribe Alive also gives back in an awesome way. They partner with artisans worldwide to employ impoverished women and provide them with safe, reliable jobs at fair-trade wages. They have so many beautiful products you can browse on their website without guilt- because each item is helping a woman in need build a better life. Such a great company with an even greater cause to support!


I’ve always been a big fan of any and all snacks that POPSUGAR includes in their “Must Have” boxes, but the chocolate-covered cereal bar from Chuao Chocolatier I found inside this month’s collection of items is by far the tastiest and my favorite so far! This bar, which is essentially Cinnamon Toast Crunch pieces dipped in delicious milk chocolate- was so, so, so good. I mean gone in under 2 minutes kind of good.

I’ve already bookmarked Chuao’s page for future reference when I decide to do a mass snack haul since they have so many other delicious-looking things to savor! They have a chocolate & bacon bar, for crying out loud. What more do you need in this life?!


I’m not going to lie- I’ve always been dreadful when it came to false eyelashes. I can never get them right, they itch, they fall off way too easily- you name it. It’s just never been a good combination. Not only that, but I prefer them to look a little more natural and most of the ones I’ve come across throughout my travels and experiments have been a bit over-the-top, to put it mildly.

Despite all of that- I thought these silk lashes from Battington Lashes looked rather lovely and more realistic than other falsies I’ve tried in the past. I haven’t given these ones a go yet, but I have a feeling I’ll finally try them out when I prepare for the first comic-convention I’ll be attending in 2017 a little later on this month in Rhode Island. These are good for up to 25 uses- which means I’ll have plenty of time to practice getting these on right!


I will never say no to a good quality body cream- especially in the Winter- and my prayers were answered with this super soothing body treatment from JUARA Skincare. Infused with candlenut oil and vitamin E- this nourishing cream leaves my skin hydrated, conditioned, soft and smooth.

This has been a miracle these past few days- especially after the recent snowstorms that have slammed New England. I come inside after shoveling and immediately slather some of this on and it’s like instant relief. I’m a big fan and I have a feeling I’ll be picking up a couple more jars of this- both for myself and to gift friends & family, too!



I have been wearing this adorable gold -plated “love” script necklace from Kris Nations Jewelry non-stop since I received it. It’s tiny, classy, delicate- and pairs beautifully with my small stud earrings and plain sweaters I typically wear to work this time of year. It serves as a nice little reminder of one of the most important things in this world- although at $48 I’m always a tiny bit nervous the thin chain will break while I’m wearing it and it’ll be lost forever!

Other than that, though- this was such a lovely surprise to receive in this month’s “Must Have” box.



Finally, POPSUGAR included a bonus item in this month’s assortment- a ruby red lipstick from Revlon’s Super Lustrous collection. This creamy formula feels so lightweight on my lips- but is still super pigmented and gives my fair complexion a brilliant and unexpected pop of color that lasts a lot longer than I thought it would!

I’m always on the prowl for really good red lipsticks- since I consider it to be one of my signature colors- and this one is right up there on my list of favorites!


I think February’s “Must Have” box might be one of the best ones I’ve ever received. Each item was so lovely, and the value of everything included far surpassed my monthly subscription cost/shipping and handling. I was so impressed by everything- even the smaller items like the lipstick and the chocolate bar. This box was well thought out and organized- and I am once again a very satisfied customer!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: January 2017

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Good Morning and Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you all had a phenomenal weekend. I’m still recovering from celebrating Saturday night’s Patriots victory- but that’s another story for another day. Before I head off to my office to start another busy work week, I wanted to share what I received in my first POPSUGAR “Must Have Box” of 2017- which arrived a few days ago via USPS.

For those of you who may be new to these types of posts from me, allow me to explain. I was previously enrolled in three monthly subscription box services that I would thoroughly review each and every month. In mid-2016, in an attempt to save myself some money and better budget my finances- I opted out of two of the services and remained enrolled in the one I liked best- POPSUGAR’s “Must Have Box”.

What I love most about the “Must Have Box” is that it isn’t limited to one particular thing/type of product, but instead incorporates all sorts of luxury items each and every month- ranging from beauty, food, home decor, fashion & accessories, books, etc. etc. You never really know what you’re going to get until you open it- so it’s a lovely surprise every month!


Every month, the items in the box revolve around a selected theme/inspiration- which is detailed (along with descriptions and price points for each product inside the box) on a postcard. January’s items, for example- were inspired by the words NEW, FRESH, DETOX, MOTIVATION, HEALTHY and REVITALIZE.

It sounds perfect for a new year, doesn’t it?

Let’s take a look at what I got!


The first product I picked up from January’s “Must Have Box” was this lovely tin of peppermint loose leaf tea from Dean & DeLuca. While I’m very much a coffee bean type of girl- I have been slowly but surely trying to incorporate more tea into my diet as a means to cut back on those espresso-withdrawal headaches and late-latte shakes/jitters. Peppermint is one of my favorite flavors, too- so I’m sure I’ll be enjoying this shortly!

Side Note: I checked out Dean & DeLuca’s website to see what else the brand had to offer- and I’m gonna’ need an order of their Champagne Biscuits Roses De Reims as soon as possible.



At work, I am pretty much a note-taking fiend. I’m constantly jotting things down, writing myself reminders, scribbling down thoughts/times/numbers/etc. so receiving some inspirational stickies from Happy Notes to decorate my (or my co-workers’) desks with was a fun treat. Each note features a cute pick-me-up message and a little decorative doodle on it to help break up the repetitiveness of each day.

Dibs on the “Fiesta Time!” one, though. That has me written all over it.


And the award for the most amazing scented candle ever goes to… When I first unwrapped this soy candle from Glade and caught a whiff of it’s warm, coconut fragrance- I immediately thought of my last trip to San Diego and couldn’t help but grin. This affordable (and you best believe I’ll be buying more of these!) jar candle seriously smells so lovely- and it’s such an unexpected but pleasant fragrance to have around my home during these chilly months.

I swear, I feel a little warmer every time I light it because it just takes me back to my last weekend at an ocean-side paradise near the Pacific!


At $85 a bottle, this acid resurfacing peel from GOLDFADEN MD SKINCARE might be one of the most expensive products I’ve ever received in a POPSUGAR “Must Have Box” and I’m very intrigued by it’s super effective- but still gentle on the skin- description. The combination of Lactic acid and Multi-Fruit Enzymes are supposed to provide some serious exfoliation while simultaneously smoothing out the complexion, fine lines/wrinkles, pores and imperfections.

Given how tough the Winter is on my face- I’ll be giving this a try in the coming days. Who knows? It might even make my January Hits List near the end of the month if it works well enough!


Of course, if I’m going to be using a peel on my face- I’m going to need to keep my hair away from my skin and eyes- and this wrap towel from Daily Concepts is definitely going to come in handy! I’ve had a couple of similar towels like this in the past, and they are terrific and very helpful- especially when applying masks or makeup. I have a lot of curly, unruly hair- but the microfibers in these towels helps reduce frizz and fly-aways while it gently dries my ends and scalp.

Best of all? it doesn’t budge once you wrap/tuck it into place- so you don’t have to do that weird and uncomfortable head-tilt maneuver while you’re getting ready to keep the towel from falling off and ruining your progress.


I actually got a new yoga mat in a POPSUGAR box last year, and I’ve been using it a lot lately- so this slip-proof and absorbent towel from Manduka is the perfect add-on to cover my mat when I go to get my stretch on and start to sweat but don’t want to slide all over the place while I’m trying to hold my balance.

I’m not exactly graceful by nature, so anything that can help keep me steady (and dry) is always appreciated!


Like post-it notes, I also rely heavily on calendars- and this floral calendar/notecard pack from May Designs is a beautiful way to keep track of the days. Each card/month features a colorful hand-painted flower pattern, plenty of space on the back to jot down important dates/times- and comes with two plastic holders to keep the cards in place on your desk/tabletop.

I’ve been keeping this particular calendar in my kitchen- and the patterns definitely brighten things up!


Each month’s POPSUGAR “Must Have Box” usually comes with some additional online perks/coupons, as well. This month’s deal featured a 15% voucher off of any order from Dean & DeLuca (the code itself was digitally covered by me) which means I’ll be getting those Champagne Biscuits Roses De Reims after all!

Overall, I really enjoyed January’s “Must Have Box” and I thought each item I received fit the month’s theme/inspiration perfectly! It was a great collection to kick off a brand new year with- and if this is any indication to the quality POPSUGAR is going to put into their boxes for the remainder of the 2017- I’m very excited to see what’s next!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: December 2016

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Happy Monday, everyone! I hope those of you who celebrated Christmas had a wonderful holiday weekend! I know I did- spending a couple of relaxing days with my family eating way too much food and exchanging lots of presents. I’m back to work this morning, wrapping up a couple of things at the office before New Years Eve- and putting the finishing touches on my last posts of 2016.

My December “Must Have” box from POPSUGAR arrived over this past weekend after a shipping delay, and I wasted no time in tearing it open and getting ridiculously giddy over what was inside before I laid out each product/item beside the Christmas tree to take a few photos.


I knew December’s box would have a seasonal, “festive” theme- since nearly every December subscription box does- but this month’s assortment of items were also inspired by SNOWY, WHITE, MINIMALIST, GIVING and CELEBRATIONS. Christmas boxes are my second-favorite ones to receive after Autumn-themed ones, so I was really excited to see what was included in this last collection of the year.

Let’s take a look at what I got!


I honestly can never get enough of these “all-in-one” baking kits that I usually see at farmers markets and general stores around the holidays. They make great gifts and when used correctly- they really are delicious treats. I got a couple from relatives this year, and I’m really excited to bake them AND this cookie mix kit from Sisters’ Gourmet. The only thing I need to create these chocolate chip cookies are eggs and butter- so I know what I’ll be doing on the next snowy day we have here in New England!


Although I’ve been gradually making changes to my hair color/style- it’s still considered color-treated and as such, I have to remain pretty diligent on keeping an eye on the products I use. I haven’t had the chance to try this serum from DESSANGE Professional Hair Luxury– but it smells lovely and I’m hoping it gives me the same shine I’ve seen people raving about in online reviews of the brand/product.



I am coveting cranberry shades lately, so this pill-shaped container of matte red from Winky Lux is my new favorite. The shade, “Bunny”, goes on super smooth and stays in place all day (and night!) This has quickly become one of my go-to hues for the holidays and for the Winter in general because of how comfortable it feels and for how pigmented it is. Side note: Winky Lux has a couple of purple, blue and green shades that I’d actually really, really like to experiment with. They look so interesting!


Much like lipsticks, I can never have enough jewelry, either- so when I saw this circular silver & white snowfall pendant from BaubleBar– I was really excited to start pairing it with my oversized sweaters and fancier holiday dresses now that I’m heading back to work post-Christmas. This pendant is so simple, but eye-catching- and it works well with some of my other everyday silver necklaces, too. This is going to be making regular appearances in my outfits for the next couple of months.


I don’t typically wear my hair in up-dos that often- maybe once or twice a year for special occasions- but I’ll definitely be making an exception so that I can integrate these sparkly hair clips from Mane Message into my style. I think these will give my hairstyle just the right amount of subtle sparkle to keep me looking and feeling festive without overdoing it- which is always good.


With a retail value of $67, this porcelain catchall and ring dish from Odeme is one of the most beautiful home decor items I’ve ever received from POPSUGAR. I’m finishing up renovations on my bathroom and vanity area, and the simple black and white design of this set is going to match the room perfectly when it’s done. This might be my favorite item in this month’s “Must Have” box. I simply love it and am blown away by it’s quality!


Finally, this month’s digital goodies came courtesy of Mane Message (20% off of an online order) and Sisters Gourmet (also 20% off of any order). The codes have been erased for photographing/posting purposes and I do plan on using both of them before the end of 2016!

Overall, I enjoyed the last “Must Have” box of 2016. The porcelain set and the lipstick were definitely the highlights for me- but the necklace and the cookie mix were also wonderful additions!

Here’s to another year of being surprised and impressed by POPSUGAR in 2017!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: November 2016.

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First, let me start off my apologizing for the quality of these photos. Daylight Savings Time and my work schedule do not agree with one another at all. By the time I get home from my office, it’s pitch black outside- and the current lighting in my place is not exactly what you’d call cooperative. I tried my best with these given the circumstances- but I understand they aren’t exactly the brightest and clearest pictures around.

Secondly, with Thanksgiving just a short week away- I have been so preoccupied with preparing as much as I can in terms of cooking/baking/decorating that I’ve been a little scatterbrained lately. Thankfully, POPSUGAR sent me over some things in their “Must Have” box this month that are going to come in handy and help me out a little bit!

Per the enclosed pamphlet that is included in every month’s assortment of items- November’s box was inspired by the themes of TOGETHERNESS, ELEGANT, ESSENTIALS, INVITING and CELEBRATION.

Let’s take a look at what I got!


While this won’t necessarily come in handy for Thanksgiving- this limited edition toffee butter popcorn from Oogie’s Snacks WILL be helpful the next time I start getting hungry at work and don’t have time to run out to grab a proper lunch. I just love popcorn in general, so I had no problems hiding this away in my purse for the next time I’m pulling some overtime and want something salty, sweet and crunchy to hold me over. It’s gluten-free, too- which isn’t really important to me- but that’s great for anyone who needs it!


The item that took up the most space in November’s “Must Have” box has got to be this gray-colored nest wire bowl from AJ Goods. I love the design of this bowl- which was handmade in India- and how lightweight it is. For Thanksgiving, I think I’ll be using this to store the napkins and silverware (or the dinner rolls, depending on how much room I have left over after the rest of the food is laid out)– but post-Thanksgiving I know I’m going to be filling it with Christmas tree ornaments to give my dining room table a more festive feel.


I was really excited when I saw this fringed, champagne and wine-colored table runner from Pehr Designs in this month’s assortment of items. Every year- without fail- my mother always drives herself crazy trying to find a chic runner to adorn her table with for the holidays. This one actually matches her kitchen and dining room perfectly, so I’ll be gifting this to her as an early Thanksgiving Day surprise so she doesn’t have an anxiety attack when she’s trying to put the finishing touches on her decor.

Mom, if you’re reading this right now- surprise! And you’re welcome!


My dad used to say that I was like a crow in the sense that I am always drawn to anything sparkly or shiny. That being said- this was the first item I noticed in November’s “Must Have” box so I’m pretty sure that means he was right. I’m all about these star party picks from Meri Meri (who make the CUTEST stationary and gift cards ever.) If I don’t use these by Thanksgiving- you can bet they’ll be making an appearance for Christmas.


The item I knew I’d be receiving in November’s “Must Have” box was this compact “Dawn to Dusk” eye shadow palette from Stowaway Cosmetics– and I’ve been wearing it every single day since I opened it up. The colors are super pigmented, easy to blend, and really make my eyes pop. I’ve been wearing the lighter, more neutral shades during the day at work- and then adding a touch of the darker shades, like the royal blue along my lash line- to give myself a more dramatic look if I have anything planned for after I leave the office at night.

You can pick up this palette at Stowaway’s website, too! It’s not a limited edition product and it’s available to order!


I adore rose gold- so much, in fact- that I’ve been debating incorporating the hue into my highlights in my hair for a completely new look for the coming New Year. That’s neither here nor there, however- what IS here is this gorgeous, adjustable rose gold and white pearl bracelet from Kendra Scott. This item was a total surprise, and I am absolutely in love with it! This is one of those pieces that looks great when worn with jeans and a fluffy sweater, or with a more dressed up and fancy ensemble. It’s so versatile and like the above-pictured palette from Stowaway- I’ve been wearing this non-stop!


POPSUGAR included some digital goodies in their November “Must Have” box, too. A 20% off voucher for Kendra Scott, 25% off a purchase of $50 or more from Stowaway Cosmetics, and 25% off an entire order through Pehr Designs. Sometimes the vouchers are hit or miss with me- but I have a feeling I’ll be taking advantage of each of these discounts when it comes time for me to start my Christmas shopping!

Overall, I loved November’s “Must Have” box. It had a little bit of everything and I can’t wait to use some of the items for the holidays. I’m really looking forward to seeing what POPSUGAR has planned for their end-of-the-year box. Judging from how on the mark they’ve been throughout 2016- I have a feeling it’s going to be good!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: October 2016.

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I wanted to take some time in-between watching and reviewing terrible horror movies on Netflix, finalizing the last details of my upcoming Halloween-themed giveaway, and putting the finishing touches on a couple of sponsored posts I have planned this week to share what I was fortunate enough to find in my recently received POPSUGAR “Must-Have” Box.

For those who may need a refresher, POPSUGAR’s “Must-Have” Box is a monthly subscription service ($39.95 per month) that sends you a little bit of everything- makeup, accessories, clothing, food, gadgets, home decor, books, etc. The value of the items included in each box almost always surpasses what is spent on the subscription, shipping & handling- and absolutely nothing included is poorly made or cheap in quality. I’m always completely blown away by what I receive.

The Fall boxes are my favorite, so I was really, really excited for October’s to arrive.

Let’s take a look.


Each month, POPSUGAR chooses the items included in the “Must-Have” box based around a theme/inspiration. This month, the assortment was inspired by: REINVENTION, WARM, COZY, SNUGGLY, INSPIRATION, and HAPPY- all appropriate words to describe the month of October and the chilly weather that comes with it here in New England.


This month’s box included a bonus item- a hardcover copy of “Power Your Happy“- the memoir penned by POPSUGAR’s founder, Lisa Sugar. I fully plan to sit down and read this book cover to cover, but a quick skim showed that this memoir is filled with fun stories and advice for career-oriented women like myself to inspire and motivate us to live our best lives and truly enjoy what we do.

I’m really excited to start it!


I’m nearly out of my current pumpkin & coffee scented body wash, so this brown sugar & vanilla shower oil/bubble bath from LALICIOUS arrived just in time to save me a few dollars that would otherwise be spent replenishing my bath & body products. This stuff smells amazing- and I’m really looking forward to taking a long, hot soak with this product the first opportunity I get.


I typically pair long, hot bubble-baths with a piping cup of tea- but I think I can swap that out for a cup of this dark chocolate cocoa from My Cup of Cocoa, instead. While I usually only drink hot chocolate the second the snow begins to fall around here- this stuff sounds pretty tasty- and I think I can make an exception to the rule and drink it a few weeks early.


And what better way to enjoy my cocoa than by sipping it from this Rise & Shine diner mug from Morning Culture? I love the unique curved shape of this ceramic mug, and I’m sure it’s going to be making an appearance on my Instagram in the coming days when I take a coffee break from working on my “Horrors of Netflix” series (and given how bad those movies are- I may spike the coffee just a teeny, tiny bit. Just to help me get through it.)


I currently use micellar water to remove my makeup and condition my skin after washing my face- but I’m not opposed to trying something new. This towel from Makeup Eraser is supposedly good for 1,000 washes (I fully intend on testing that claim) and gently removes even the toughest and most waterproof of cosmetics with just warm water. I haven’t tried it yet, but it’s travel-sized- which will come in handy the next time I take a day trip (so pretty soon, I imagine.)

I’ll be sure to report back on my social media about whether or not it worked.



I’ve owned quite a few umbrellas in my life, but never anything quite as fancy as this (and never one priced at $58!) I’m completely smitten with the color scheme of this umbrella from Henri Bendel. It’s gorgeous- and given the recent pattern of unpredictable weather we’ve been seeing around here- I’m sure it’s going to come in handy sooner rather than later. I can’t wait to show this one off at work during the next rainy day.


Although I’ve been using a lot of copper and dark chocolate colored eyeliners in recent weeks- it’s nice to have a fine-point classic black one again to mix things up when I feel I need something a bit more dramatic in my look. I’ve used these types of liners from Revlon before- so it’s nice to have something I’m familiar and comfortable with to keep in my bag when I need it.


Finally, POPSUGAR included some additional discount cards/coupons in this month’s box (I’ve edited out the codes so that they can’t be used by anyone but me right now.) The first is a 20% off coupon from LALICIOUS- which I know I’ll be using shortly when I start my holiday shopping.

The second is a coupon from Revlon (and since I’m in need of a new lipstick- I know I’ll be using this, too!) and the last one is another 20% off card from Henri Bendel. I saw a couple of REALLY cute scarves and bags on the company’s official website- so it’ll be nice to get a bit of a discount should I decide to splurge on myself or others!

Overall, this “Must-Have” box might be one of my all-time favorites. The value of the items included was incredible- and I’m going to get so much use out of each and every item I received. I’m so thrilled with what was selected for this month’s assortment- and I’m really looking forward to seeing what POPSUGAR has planned for November!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: September 2016.

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With August’s “Must Have” box arriving a little late last month- POPSUGAR wasted no time in making sure their September collection of items was prompt and punctual when being shipped out to subscribers’ doorsteps. My box showed up this past weekend- and previews/spoilers for October’s “Must Have” assortment started popping up in my e-mail shortly thereafter. It looks like the company is determined to stay one step ahead of the game these days!

September’s box, the first in what I call the “Autumn Trio” (September/October/November) was inspired by/had the theme of: GLAMOROUS, EYE-CATCHING, INDULGENT, BOLD, TIMELESS and SARTORIAL. I had a feeling the “indulgent” part would be some sort of food (and I wasn’t wrong)– but I had no idea what POPSUGAR would include to fit the rest of the theme.

Let’s take a look at what I received!


I am always on the prowl for a good and deeply hydrating hair mask- and since the one I’ve been using as of late is nearly gone- I was really happy to see this conditioning mask from Briogeo in September’s “Must Have” box. At $36 a container, I know I’ll have to use this sparingly so it won’t be gone in a week or two- but I admit it’ll be difficult because this stuff smells SO good and so clean! Best of all? It’s free of harmful and color-damaging chemicals.

I can’t wait to give this mask a try!


I don’t have a gluten allergy so anything gluten-free isn’t really a big deal to me. As long as whatever I’m snacking on tastes good and not like chalk- I’m happy. Enter these dark chocolate and coconut bites from The Gluten Free Bar- which combine my two favorite flavors for a surprisingly yummy treat. These bites are low calorie and packed with protein- which means I don’t feel like I’m cheating on my diet/fitness regimen while I’m enjoying them (definitely a perk!)

I checked out some of the other flavors that are available through GFB’s website- and I have a feeling I’ll be ordering some more of their stuff real soon!



I was really into wide-brimmed beach hats this past Summer, but I wasn’t sure how to implement that new favorite accessory into my Fall wardrobe without it looking weird or lazily thrown together. Thankfully, Jack & Lucy (I couldn’t locate an official website for their company!) had me covered. I think this black, adjustable wool hat is my favorite item in September’s “Must Have” box. I’ve been wearing it non-stop: to work, out when I’m walking/taking photographs, dining with my friends. It’s so chic and pairs so well with my long sweaters, leggings and knee-high boots!

I’ll definitely be packing this in my bag when I fly out to Vegas next week!


Also getting packed in my suitcase next week? This retractable lint roller from Flint. My clothes are always a magnet for dog hair, fuzz, and pollen- so I’ll be toting this around with me everywhere I go from now on. I’m really liking how compact this roller is, but also that it’s refillable AND recyclable. It’s perfect for someone like me who wants to look spot-on wherever I go while remaining environmentally responsible.



I haven’t had a manicure in weeks (I’ve been trying to give my nails a break and strengthen them)– although I have a feeling I’ll be touching up my digits and my toes with a nice coat of a berry tone or an oxblood hue before I jet-set off to the West Coast next week. I plan on keeping this miniature manicure kit from ncLA close to me for those quick touch-ups and overall upkeep between salon visits, though. I think the carrying case is adorable- and the size of the tools is perfect for easy transport.



Forgive my semi-blotchy skin (thanks, PMS. You always know how to make an entrance)– but I couldn’t wait to try on and show off this bright and sparkly red lip gloss from Smith & Cult. Although the formula itself feels a little sticky/tacky at first- I’m loving the buildable color- which is a neat red/gold combination that looks really pretty by itself or layered over lipstick.

I’m in the process of starting my annual Fall clean-out of my old makeup and cosmetics- and I have a feeling this gloss is going to find a home in my bag for the Fall/Winter.

Overall- I loved September’s “Must Have” box. My favorite item was hands down the black wool hat- followed closely by the lip gloss and the hair mask. The value of each item surpassed what I spent on the box (and then some!) which is always pretty cool.

Bring on October!


POPSUGAR Must Have Box: August 2016.

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One of my favorite things about POPSUGAR’s “Must Have Box”, apart from what I receive- is how on top of things and on the ball their customer service department is. If there’s going to be a delay in deducting payments, or shipments- they let you know A.S.A.P. You’re never left wondering when the money is going to be pulled from your account or when your box is going to arrive at your doorstep. They keep you informed with e-mails and alerts and I love that! It’s greatly appreciated and it’s just good business overall!

August’s payment/shipment was a tad late- arriving earlier this week, actually- but I had known in advance the company was slightly behind, so I didn’t mind at all.


With Fall right around the corner and many students already back in school for the new semester- it seemed only appropriate that August’s “Must Have Box” would incorporate that into their theme/inspiration for the month. MOTIVATION, ORGANIZATION, ORDER, FRESH, TRANSITION AND BACK-TO-SCHOOL were the words and phrases used to curate the assortment of items enclosed in this installment.

Let’s take a look at what I got!


It’s breaking my heart that I have to retire my beloved beach tote I had picked up from Primark earlier this Summer- but this lovely, durable and adjustable brown duck bag from BAGGU helps to take away the sting a little.  Made with recycled fabric, I’m loving the print of this bag- which is perfect for the Fall and will compliment my more neutral ensembles perfectly. The bag is also big/deep enough to hold the necessities without weighing me down or getting in my way, too- so it’s a win! I think this will be a perfect transitional piece from my nautical Summer tote for the coming season.


I plan on upgrading my phone at some point this weekend since it’s on it’s last leg. It’s barely holding a charge anymore, and only half of the touch-screen works properly. It’s been a fun few years- but I need to find something newer and better for myself and my technological needs.

Of course, with a new phone comes that fun first few weeks of paranoia about scratching or dirtying up the screen- so these reusable screen clothes (in the cutest shapes!) from UNPLUGGED arrived just in time. These individual wipes can stick to the back of your phone (or it’s case) for quick, on-the-go clean-ups- perfect for travel!


Speaking of awesome travel necessities for technological needs- I am LOVING this portable USB PowerGloss charger from TRIPLE C. I mean seriously loving it. This thing is a lifesaver. This charger is about the size of a lipstick tube- which makes it SO convenient when I’m on the road or in transit and my aforementioned dying phone needs a bit of juice so I can text/call.

This might be one of the most practical and most used things I’ve ever received in a subscription service. It’s a game changer and something I honestly and truly needed in my life.


Also in need of some serious updating- apart from my phone? My makeup collection. I’ve used up pretty much every last bit of my Summer cosmetics: BB creams, aqua eyeliners, gold shadows and bronzers. I’ve hit pan on nearly everything- so receiving this beautiful and sheer pink blush from CARGO COSMETICS was a nice surprise for my face (and my wallet.)

I tend to lean towards more natural rose/mauve tones on my cheeks in the Fall and Winter- and this color is so flattering and beautiful with my complexion- that I know I’ll get plenty of use out of it!



I am constantly reaching for post-it notes at work (and at home, or in my car, or while shopping for post-its) so this booklet of brightly colored ombré sticky notes from CHRISTIAN LACROIX PARIS is fantastic. Not only are the notes themselves bright and fun- but the case they’re sealed in is beautifully made, too!

This booklet has found a home in my bag for when I need to write myself a quick reminder or have to jot down an idea I don’t want to forget!


I’m fairly sure I’ve said it before- but it can definitely be repeated- POPSUGAR finds the most unusual, but oddly delicious snacks to include in their “Must Have” boxes. This cookies & cream flavored popcorn from COOKIE POP is no exception. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first laid eyes on this stuff- but it actually tastes really, really good- like a saltier version of Cookie Crisp Cereal. It’s low in fat and calories, too- which makes it completely safe for those who are trying to snack healthier but still need to satisfy their cravings for something sweet!


Finally, this month’s bonus coupon(s) came in the form of this %20 OFF and FREE SHIPPING voucher for CARGO COSMETICS (I edited out the actual code for privacy purposes)– which I’m sure I’ll be using to stock up on some stuff prior to flying out to Vegas at the end of this month. I can’t wait to browse their selection of products and see what I find!

Overall- as usual- I was thrilled with my “Must Have” box (shocking, I know.) I am going to get plenty of use out of each item I received- and the overall value of the products included easily surpasses what I paid for the box to begin with. I am beyond grateful for the portable charger- and the blush and the bag have saved me a ton of aggravation of having to go out and purchase ones on my own.

August’s box was another success- and you know I’m looking forward to September’s!