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As you all know by now, God help the company that has me write reviews. For the most part it works out great, but I can stick it to you if I think your product sucks eggs, is craphouse, full of false advertising or worse, inappropriate for children.
But in my attempt to see the glass half-full in 2010, I thought I’d end the year with my top favorite products to try in the new year. I received all of these products from events, PR agencies or the rad and unforgettable SVMOM preholiday event.
1. Take your handbag. Pull out the credit card with the biggest limit and get ready to transform your face. I’m not even a little bit kidding. I’m a high-end face product user and this stuff is unreal. I’ve had decades of bad skin and tried everything known to man to try and curb it over the years. I only use very high quality products on my face and save the 99-cent stuff for the rest of my body parts. I have spent the past two weeks using Marie-Veronique Organics products and my face looks like a teenager girl with a Snickers fettish. But, and this is a big but: I’ve never been so happy to look like crap. I know the toxins are pouring out of my skin and I’m loving every minute of it. How’s that for a product review?
It’s clear that the Marie Veronique products do exactly what they say they do: they are pure to your skin, they smell like you just walked out of The Golden Door spa and, above all, it’s completely addictive. I was given samples of the Cleanse, Hydrate, Replenish and Repair products. Of the entire line, I found the hydrate spritz to be one of the greatest products of all time. It’s the mid/late afternoon sprirtz to the face that I swear to the spa gods makes me feel like I took a nap. The second unforgettable product from this line is the repair serum which, I’m sure the founders will love to hear, cures Le Hangover Face. Puffiness, redness, splotchiness all gone. This stuff is magic for a reason. It’s made from crazy free radicals (a synonym for Garza Girl) and all kinds of organics stuff I know nothing about. It’s expensive as all getout; really, nutso expensive. I’m savoring every drop of the samples I received and going to order the ones I can’t live without. This stuff is worth its weight in gold. No, it’s more expensive than gold, but it’s been a great treat.
2. Do not laugh at me. I am dead serious about these two products. First let me say, it’s only because of the horrible economy that I would even consider making coffee at home, muchless specialty coffee at home. I am a Peet’s Coffee kind of girl (Actually I’m a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf kind of girl but they don’t have one in San Jose). First product is the damn – ugh, I hate to admit it, even — the Starbucks instant coffee. The VIA line of coffee that came out this year isn’t cheap either. It’s about a buck each, so don’t spill the freezedrygroundbeans. But, the coffee is surprisingly good. I like the Italian Roast better than the Colombian. Oh wait, maybe the other way around? Whichever, it’s the darker roast one (and darker package). Cha-ching: in a swig of coffee, I’m saving at least $1 and closer to $1.15 each time I choose to use the VIA. The coffee doesn’t smell like coffee, which is the only downside, but on the upside, it doesn’t smell like dry ice either. Another plus: the VIA doesn’t need to be warm to dissolve, so you can put it in with milk/water combo and shake it up for an iced coffee. If you’re thinking of giving up your coffee habit to save money, this is the way to go. Alternatively, you can take the rest of the money you save ($1.15×365=$419.75 per year) and donate it to one of my three favorite charities: the George Mark Children’s House, Pro Mujer or Sacred Heart Community Center. Now that’s a good idea. Wheesh, I’m clever.
The second coffee product of the year is CoffeeMate French Vanilla creamer that I got at the SV Moms event in November. Ewww, creamer you say? That’s what I said. Until, the fated day when my eggnog *and* my regular coffee went bad on Christmas Day and curdled in my cup. On a day when nothing was open, I was left creamless in San Jose. After scrounging around the cupboards, I found the CoffeeMate freebees I’d gotten and promptly served them to my entire family without telling a soul. I can’t even tell you how good that dang thing tasted. The best part of it (besides pulling it off without a hitch), is the single-serve size. Sure, I felt sneaky and just slightly low-class, but it was worth it. I looked for the CoffeeMate singles at Safeway but didn’t see them. Will definitely use this as a go-to pantry item this year. I might be less classy than I thought (I have the Torani vanilla syrup in my pantry too), but it worked in a pinch.
3. My final product of the next year to work with is the line of Nubius Organics. Now, the lovely people at Nubius Organics better stop frigging spamming me with email before I call the blacklist people on them, but aside from the borderline spam, I have to say, their products are completely off-the-hook. Nubius sells my faved, beloved Nathan waterbottle for cheaper than you can find it on Amazon. The site touts green-friendly products, and although green isn’t on my major priority list, I really like the way they explain why something is green, why it’s important to them. The big purchase for 2010 is going to be converting our entire family to their Laptop Lunches, a bento box style of lunchbox that creates zero — that’s a big fat 0 — trash. I’m a huge fan of the idea and can’t wait to see how it rolls. I think Laptop Lunches also has a school program, so I’m waiting to make the purchase in case my kids’ school can benefit from it. Organic stuff is so damn expensive, but Nubius has some good deals in their sale section too. Kids are excited to have bento box lunches, my son says, because then everyone will think he is on the Green Team.