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Sunday, July 8, 2018

I'm BACK! Review of Almay Goddess Gloss™.

Well, it has been a long while since I last posted, and there's good reason for that. I moved to GA, got a new (and awesome) job and have been living the southern life for the last 2 years.

I miss NY... to a point. I'm NOT changing the blog name from The Soap Lady NY to The Soap Lady GA. Most of my heart still belongs to NY and always will. Though I have thought about it.  There have been ups & downs, as usual.  I'll try to have a post about them later.

I have a new, resident cosmetologist in the home, Kiah, who will be helping me with some of my beauty posts, like the one you will see today! She has her cosmetology license from NY, is working on getting her GA license, and has the youth I no longer have as I'm pushing the age of 40. 😅 You'll understand the youth reference in a bit when we get to our review.

  • Retails for $9.99 at Ulta.
  • About the Product:
    • Gives lips a holographic, iridescent glow.
    • Lips feel moisturized and smooth, never sticky.
    • Made with pomegranate, grape and raspberry oils.
    • Available in 8 sheer, easy to wear, high-shine shades.
    • As always, hypoallergenic & fragrance free.
  • How To Use: Apply to lips.  Pretty simple.  Some tips are to:
    • Rock it solo for an iridescent glow on lips.
    • Mix & match shades to create infinite ombré looks.
    • Layer over lipstick for a transformative holographic effect.
  • What We Thought: Immediately when I opened the package & saw the color I was like, "Yeah, this is NOT the shade for me."  The color we received was Rainbow (swatch to the right).  I'm more of a neutral & natural colors person when it comes to makeup, so I was hoping to get it in a color like Cosmic.  Oh well.  So I call my resident cosmetologist (Kiah) over & am like, "Hey, I got this gloss but don't like the color, you want to try it & give me a review?"  She immediately swatches it & starts telling me about how it's well pigmented, so I knew it was a yes before she even stated it.  Onto her review:
    • It's very pigmented & so the color is really nice & lasts almost all day.  I had to re-apply only once after lunch.  It's comparable to the Grand Illusion Glossy Liquid Lipcolour by MAC but it's a LOT less sticky, very smooth, settles into your lips well, & doesn't shift like theirs.  Plus MAC's price is $21, so the Goddess Gloss is 1/2 the price.  The Goddess Gloss applicator is also nicer & doesn't make a mess when used like the MAC brand tends to, by getting all over the bottle & my hands.  It didn't have any scent or flavor to it.  It's a fun color for a party or going out, it's not a casual color.
  • I might buy it in a different color.  Kiah would buy this.

Kiah rocking the solo look!

Ulta is currently having a sale on these where you can buy one & get one 50% off!  CLICK HERE to get yours!  Also, let me know which color is your favorite?

I hope to get back into the swing of things & post more often.  THANKS Kiah for your help & I hope to collaborate on more posts with you later! 

This post was sponsored by Almay as part of a sampling activation for Crowdtap. I received  complimentary products to facilitate my review.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Review of Valentia Ultra Plumping Hydration Mask!

In just a few more years I'll be 40 and those fine lines and wrinkles are starting to creep up.  I like the Valentia as a company, what they stand for, and their products, so when I saw that I could try Valentia's Ultra Plumping Hydration Mask I got excited.  Below is some information on the product and my review!

Valentia believes in the power of nature and therefore we proudly treat nature with the utmost respect and care.  Inside every Valentia product you will find ingredients that are organic, natural, toxin and paraben­-free.  Using sustainable energy, vegan friendly, animal cruelty free, and made in the USA.  Our experts have scientifically formulated products that are highly concentrated with only the most potent natural medicines, meaning a little goes a long way.  In our firm conviction that everyone deserves self ­care and to have access to luxury skincare solutions, we always keep our products priced fairly.

  • Retails for $54.99 at
  • About The Product: Ultra Plumping Hydration mask is a powerful 3 in 1 rejuvenation treatment that boats both rapid results and long lasting effects in erasing the signs of aging. In 30 minutes experience a totally new type of glow with our innovative formula of organic, natural ingredients which, one: flood skin cells with essential moisture, two: detox everyday cellular wear and tear, and three: increase collagen production, for totally nourished, firm, even­-toned skin.
    ● INTENSE HYDRATION: Moisture is absolutely essential to glowing, younger looking skin. Valentia’s Ultra Pumping mask is formulated using natural ingredients that permeate profoundly, to moisturize on both a surface and cellular level and immediately rescue skin from dry dullness.
    ● COMBATS SIGNS OF AGING: Wrinkles, fine lines, dark spots and dryness are the most common manifestations of skin fatigue. Valentia Ultra Pumping Hydration Mask contains a miraculous Silk Protein Amino Acid blend, which increases the skin’s production of collagen, the molecule that is fundamental in reducing fine lines and wrinkles. The Botanical Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E, and CoQ10 further improve elasticity for more taut skin and an even skin tone free from dark spots.
    ● NATURALLY NOURISHING INGREDIENTS: The highly concentrated Organic Rosehip Seed Oil is nature’s most powerful tool to lock in moisture for a 24 hour glow. Combined with a unique blend of amino acids and potent antioxidants, like Japanese Green tea and Aloe Vera, to reduce fine lines, increase collagen production, and fight natural skin irritants.
    ● GLOWING RADIANCE: Valentia’s exclusive ingredients are meticulously selected from the highest quality, organic, all natural, resources for their individual medicinal values and also for their powerful combined and cumulative effects together.
    ● ORGANIC SEA BUCKTHORN OIL: An anti­aging wonder berry that does it all: fewer fine lines, diminished sunspots, more even skin tone, and firmer, more supple skin. Organic Sea Buckthorn Oil is one of the main ingredients in Ultra Pumping Hydration Mask for it’s unprecedented results.
    ● IN HOME SPA TREATMENT: Lifelong exposure to toxins and free radicals seems like a giant battle for your skin to conquer. Valentia offers an at home rescue opportunity to nourish delicate facial skin with nature’s most restorative ingredients.
  • How To Use: Apply to face avoiding the eye area.  Leave on for 15-30 minutes.  A slight tingling sensation is normal.  Use a damp cloth and warm water to remove.
  • What I Thought: It has a gelatinous consistency that is easy to smooth onto your skin.  I felt it gave off more of a cooling sensation than tingling while applied and waiting for it to dry.  While it is drying you can feel it tightening you skin.  I used this once a week for 3 weeks.  I dampened a cloth with warm water and used it to easily wipe the product from my skin after 15-30 minutes.  Once it was off, my skin was ultra soft and smooth to the touch.  It felt plumped, hydrated, and healthy.  My skin definitely gave off a more healthy glow and some of my finer lines were less noticeable.  It also smells fantastic!
  • I would buy this!
You can currently purchase this for $24 at!  In the link, check out some of their other Special Offers and Product Promotions to save even more!   Also, check out another review I did of their Even Glow Serum!

This is a sponsored post.  I received this product for free from Valentia, through Tomoson, to try & review.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Discover Garnier SkinActive™ & Establish Great Skincare Habits For The Coming Year!

Garnier wants us all to establish great skincare habits for the coming year.  What a better way to do that than with Garnier new SkinActive™ products!  Crowdtap sent me a kit containing Garnier products to pass out.  I asked my friends and coworkers to try the products, then either take a selfie of them with their favorite product, or a picture of it with an object that will help them with a goal or resolution for the upcoming year!

When I brought these into work to pass out I was surprised at the number of people who were already familiar with what micellar water was & how excited they were to be getting a whole bottle of it.  Hearing more than once, "I love this stuff!"  I've only recently started hearing about it an didn't know too much about it myself.  Micellar water is made up of micelles, nano-sized balls of cleansing oils, soaps, or detergents suspended in water.  These micelles absorb other oils and fats, pulling the impurities from your skin without irritation.  Apparently, it has also been around for hundreds of years but is only now making a comeback!  Did you know that?  I thought it was new technology in skincare!  Also, regular micellar water is not meant to remove heavy foundations or waterproof makeups so Garnier also made a bi-phase micellar water that does! 

  • Retails for $8.99.
  • About The Product: All-in-1 cleanser is surprisingly powerful yet gentle to skin.  It effectively removes makeup, cleanses skin and refreshes. A multi-purpose cleanser that contains Micellar technology. Like a magnet, micelles capture and lift away dirt, oil and makeup without rinsing or harsh rubbing, leaving skin perfectly clean, hydrated and refreshed without over-drying.
  • How To Use: TO REMOVE EYE MAKEUP -Hold pad over closed eyes for a few seconds, then gently wipe. TO CLEAN SKIN & REMOVE FACE MAKEUP - Gently wipe all over until skin is completely clean from makeup and impurities. Use daily, AM/PM. No need to rinse.

  • Retails for $14.99.
  • About The Product: Designed with our Antioxidant Complex of Vitamin C & E, Pine Bark Essence, and gentle exfoliating Lipo-Hydroxyl Acid (LHA), this fast absorbing, non-greasy formula turns dull, rough skin into smooth, polished-looking skin with a more radiant, even tone. Clinically proven results in a clinical test. In 1 week, reveals two key dimensions of brighter looking skin: improving skin texture, even reducing wrinkles.
  • How To Use: FOR SUNSCREEN USE - Apply liberally 15 minutes before sun exposure. Reapply at least every 2 hours. Use a water resistant sunscreen if swimming or sweating. 
I got a lot of feedback!  Mostly how everyone loved the micellar water.  Vicki said her daughter had already used up a whole bottle of the moisturizer too!  My coworker Michelle said, "Garnier SkinActive™ is a great product for sensitive skin.  It thoroughly cleansed my sensitive skin without irritation."

The best feedback I received was from Dionna.  She said, "This stuff really works! I suffer from seborrheic dermatitis and when it flares up my forehead and skin under my eyebrows gets really scaly and flaky. I've been using this for the past week and it's kept my flares down. With a little more usage I'm pretty certain it'll clear my forehead completely up!"  That's awesome to hear!  Check back later on because I may get more feedback from her!

I think my favorite of the two was actually the moisturizer.  Usually SPF 15 products are too heavy on my skin and reek of suntan lotion.  When I initially applied it it felt heavy, but it absorbed quickly and didn't leave my skin feeling weighed down.  It actually left it feeling very soft and smelled nice!  I used it more as a daily moisturizer, underneath my makeup, than as a sunscreen.  Applying it only once in the morning.

As far as the resolutions, most of us are focused on health it seems.  I had a photo of healthier snacks like nuts, popcorn, and I just had to throw in there coconut milk chocolate ice cream (which I love to sprinkle crushed gluten free pretzels on top of! YUM!).  Ok, well maybe that's not so healthy, but it's better than the ice cream I used to eat! My friend Michelle used and ornament that says, "Joy," to help inspire her, and Jess wants to spend more time with her cat!  How cute!

Garnier has a large line of SkinActive™ products to best suit your needs!  Discover SkinActive™ today and see what you can do to improve your skin, and establish great skincare habits this year!

 A HUGE THANKS to everyone who participated!

This is a sponsored post.  I received these product for free from Garnier through Crowdtap to try & review.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

imPRESS Everyone With Your Great Manicure!

I work 4 day 10 hour shifts and the days I have off of work are usually filled with errands and appointments.  When I do my own nails at home it can take HOURS between buffing, filing, base coats, polish, top coats and drying time.  Since I can't just sit around waiting for them to dry because I have a million and one other things that need to get done, I do my home errands ever so carefully.  You know how it is, walking around trying to do things with your fingers all separated, looking like you're trying to claw something, when in actuality you just don't want to smudge the semi-perfect manicure you did all yourself.

Wraps come in all sorts of fun designs but they are flimsy and sometimes hard to position well on your nail bed because of that.  I've had many times where I've put one on, only to rip it off and so that one had gone to waste.  They conform to your nail also so if you broke a nail & one is shaped round, another square, you're stuck with that.  With me, my nails are also soft because of my (non-existent) thyroid issues and nail wraps will give you no strength at all

And don't even get me started on the salons!  Sure I love the pampering, all the cool artistic designs they can do, and the fact they don't paint the skin around my nail like I tend to do (on accident.)  But the time it takes to get there, sometimes wait to be seen if you don't have an appointment, and the cost... It's just too much!  Then depending what polish you get it sometimes chips within a week, or you think it has fully dried and you smudge it or get an indentation in it within hours of leaving.  UGH!  It's nice, but I really don't have the time nor money.

What's a girl to do?

Well, what about press-on nails?  Really?  I haven't used press on nails since the 90's and it was a try it once, and never again thing.  The glue was messy and they were popping off all over the place.  Well, press-on nails have come a long way since the 90's and imPRESS sent me 2 packages to try out!  One in a pink version of their Harlem Shake, & the other in Casting Call.  Below is some info, pics & what I thought.

  • Retails up to $7.99 at Walgreens.
  • About The Product: With over 40 colors, designs & accent nails to choose from, imPRESS Manicures are 2X longer lasting (up to 1 week) than other pre-glued nails with their ultra-hold adhesive technology!  They are the only waterproof press-on nails with a secure adhesive that will not damage nails & give you an ultra gel shine in no time.  Safe & natural with no glue, no dry time, no damage, & no mess!  When you're done with them they have easy, peel-off removal in seconds.
  • How To Use: Apply in just a few minutes by finding the correct size for each nail (if needed, use smaller sizes for best results.)  Once you find the best ones, lay them out in finger order.  Wash your hands with soap, dry thoroughly and use enclosed prep pad.  For best adhesion press firmly down the middle then down each side of nail, applying the thumb nails last, then file if needed.  Minimize contact with water for 30 minutes.  To easily remove in seconds, gently peel off from sides using no acetone or soak off removal.

I can't even begin to tell you how ridiculously quick and easy it was to apply these, and how great they looked!  I felt they were slightly long for my taste so I was also surprised how easy they were to clip & file.  Going through their site I was amazed at all they have to offer from plain, to accent, to full on designs.  I did have one fall off in just a few days but I was messing around with it and putting lots of pressure on it, something I normally wouldn't do.  The rest kept sticking on & toughing it out, looking perfect day after day, and they had good strength to them too without being too soft or flimsy.

Then I decided to take them all off.  I really didn't believe they wouldn't damage my nails because I've even had wraps damage my nails before.  I carefully started pulling them up from the sides and easily removed one by one.  Then I took a look at my real nails and they looked better than when I had 1st put the imPRESS manicure on! Well, they still looked awful, unpolished and untrimmed without any polish, but wow!  The adhesive didn't tear my nails up nor leave any residue, leaving my nail beds looking quite healthy. With the great price they are, and the short time it took to apply and remove them, I can't wait to see what designs my stores have in stock and try a few more! 

You can find them not only at Walgreens but also CVS, Walmart, Rite Aid, & Kmart stores nationwide, as well as other stores.  Visit their website at to look at their latest products; & while you're at it, follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, & YouTube for some inspiration!  Still not sure?  Watch the video below!

This is a sponsored post.  I received this product for free from imPRESS through BrandBacker to try & review.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

World Suicide Prevention Day - The Ups & Downs of Thyroid Disease

I've always wanted to write about this.  I've started many times and have stopped, then discarded everything I wrote.  Depression is a hard subject for me on many levels.  I've written about anxiety and panic attacks but never about my depression, and never about my suicide attempt.

I was a pretty happy kid.  I grew up well & did ok in school.  I was a very open-minded teenager, straight edge, and rebellious!  I had a good group of friends, and though they did help mould me, I always made my own decisions and knew right from wrong.  I would butt heads with my parents, get in screaming matches with them and have bouts of crying but I was a teenager and very expressive.  I never considered myself to be depressed or feel depressed.  Things got better after I graduated.  I moved out, I worked a lot of jobs, I hung out with my friends a lot, & I traveled.  Things were good.

When I lived in CA my anxiety got worse.  I had a terrible bout of hives that kept me out of work for almost 2 weeks after getting allergy shots, which I stopped the shots all together after that.  After that it just seemed month after month I would get more ill, more tired, and issues with migraines and asthma got worse.  I was afraid to go anywhere on my own, nor did I want to go out.  Most of my time was spent traveling to work, at work, then traveling home and just being so exhausted when I finally got home.  Work was good.  Even with my health issues I was excelling at my job and was chosen to work in our operations support after we lost our one contract.  Lots of other little things built up.  I went on prednisone a few times, gained about 20lbs and then my fiance broke things off.

I don't remember packing anything, I don't remember much of the move.  I remember not eating, not being able to.  Just wanting to sleep, wanting to find a way to work things out but feeling worthless.  Everything was my fault.  I knew my parents were there, even a good friend of mine came to visit me (we're still friends to this day), but I didn't know what was really going on around me.  I slept and cried for weeks.  I was put on an antidepressant & I moved back to NY leaving one of my cats behind.

The timeline of events after I moved back is a little hazy.  I was surrounded by people, friends, family but I didn't want to be there.  I didn't know why I had been getting sicker and sicker.  I couldn't comprehend everything that just happened.  Within a month my ex's new girlfriend moved in.  Not long after that, my 1st cat I owned on my own died right in front of me, drowning in the fluids that filled his lungs.  I later found out was caused by a fungal infection really only known in animals on the west coast so this made me feel like it was all my fault, if I never took him there it wouldn't have happened.  My parents were fighting with each other.  I felt like I didn't mean anything to anyone though people were constantly telling me how happy they were I was back, and how much they loved me and supported me.

I wanted to end it.  And I almost did.  I remember hearing my parents fighting upstairs and I felt stuck.  I was 25, had no job, I'm stuck with this.  I had put in so many resumes and no one was calling me back.  I'm a failure.

I went in the bathroom and took 12, 50mg Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) pills equaling a total of 600mg.  From what I've read, it seems the maximum dosing in a 24 hour period, spaced out, is 300mg.  I doubled that taking them all at once.

My mom came downstairs and asked if I wanted to shopping and I said, "Sure."  We weren't out for too long & things got fuzzy very quickly.  I think I remember telling my mom that I was just too tired.  The next thing I remember is waking up over 20 hours later on their bed.

I didn't dream.  But I felt like there was a long absence, some part of my life went missing for those hours, completely out of consciousness.  I woke up, hazy for the next few days, wondering if that's what death will be like.  Like... nothing.  But I was happy to be awake.  No one knew what I had done.  And my parents never found out until today, when going through my medical history with my new ND.  I never would have done something like that years prior.  I would have sucked it up and moved on.  So what had changed?  Not long after I had done that, my allergist confirmed I had antithyroid antibodies & Hashimoto's Thyroiditis.  I was hypothyroid.

And since, I've struggled.  I've had the hardest struggle of my life battling my thyroid autoimmune diseases.  Yes, depression, anxiety... mental disorders go hand in hand with Hashimoto's!  I've said I'd never do something like that again but I have been close.  When I feel my life slipping from my hands I start pushing people away from me because I don't want them to see me sick.  And many people don't get exactly what's going on.  I told someone once about having panic attacks and they were all like, "Yeah, this girl had one once and she was all flipping out!" Umm, no that's not it.  When I get them I'm in so much pain I tense up and get extremely quiet.  So I just stopped trying to explain it to people.  It's also why it took so long for me to write this post, though I've been meaning to.

Being in this boat myself, if you have a friend or family member who did commit suicide, do not blame yourself.  Don't think that if you could have done just one thing differently it wouldn't have happened.  It is ultimately our decision.  Still, be there for us as much as you can.  Constantly show compassion for your friends, family, and even strangers.

And for those of us suffering, I know all too well how hard it is to change your mindset.  Everything is easier said than done but I am living proof that if you fight you will come out on top.  If my one allergist hadn't known to check my thyroid just because of a hives outbreak years prior, I may have never known my thyroid was my issue and I probably wouldn't be here today.  It would have been easier to give up and there's things I'm still struggling with.  There is help!  Don't be afraid to ask.  Yes, there's some people who won't understand but there are MANY others who will.  When I thought I was going crazy because my one endocrinologist said Grave's Disease had nothing to do with my anxiety, many people in an online support group helped me learn it did.  It helped start me down a path of knowing my disease and finding the right treatment.

My dear friend lost her brother-in-law to suicide 1-1/2 years ago today.  Please watch the video below & please share.  No matter what your struggle is... thyroid, autoimmune, or not... We need you & you are loved!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Are endocrinologists are trying to kill me?

As you've noticed there was an absence between the last post talking about my excitement of going to my (4th) endocrinologist and this post.  As I'm sure you can tell, just by reading the subject it didn't go well.  I'm not very good at summing things up, I don't know if it's an anxiety thing or memory thing that makes me go into so much detail about stuff.  I'll try to, though a lot has happened since that appointment, both good and bad.  It has been hard to get the motivation, and energy, to write all of it.  Here it goes...

PART 1: The (4th) Endocrinologist

In her profile she stated, "I look forward to practicing and bringing the best and newest treatments to my patients," and this brought me some hope.  "Newest treatments," kept dancing around in my head and the fact that a friend had recommended her to me, it all gave me hope.  A few days before the appointment the office called and said she fell ill and wanted to push my appointment back another month.  This couldn't be happening!  I had already been waiting months for this appointment, I was running out of medication, I was a mess.  I set up the future appointment, while sobbing, and started looking for a naturopath because, by this time, I was done with endocrinologists.  Within an hour, they called me back and were able to get me in the beginning of the following week.  I put my additional search on hold.

I had expectations about how the appointment would go.  I would go over my history, concerns, symptoms, then go into treatment expectations. She would review the records I sent over with me and we would decide, together, how I can get better.  Oh, how wrong I was about everything.

When she came in she introduced herself.  Having a long and different last name she went over how it was pronounced.  From there she continued to talk.  And talk.  And talk...

It started with her telling me about all the time she had taken, before coming in to see me, to review the documents I had sent over.  I didn't get a chance to tell her how the majority of those "diagnosis" were years old, over with and never removed, incorrect, or also misdiagnosis.  She thought my other doctors are really trying to help me, yet once these other doctors realized I had thyroid issues they advised me an endocrinologist had to help me.  She tells me these other side effects of thyroid (or lack of thyroid) disorders need other doctors who specialize in those issues to help me.  I knew it was going to get worse from there and it did.

She continued on how she refuses to write scripts for Armour Thyroid.  That it is an unstable medication.  I was dying to ask her then why it's approved by the FDA and still on the market, & how Synthroid has had its own history of recalls due to its inconsistency.  I told her how the last time I was on Synthroid they kept increasing the dose and my pain increased with it.  How I was symptomatic of having a T3 conversion problem.  She goes on to tell me that TSH is the only number she, or any endocrinologist, needs to check.  Pain is a rheumatologist issue and I would need to see one.  (Oh God, this is getting worse by the minute.)  But she did make a point that, how could she tell if I had a T3 conversion problem being on a med with T3?  So she'll put me back on Synthroid, then check the T3 and my other thyroid levels later on.  Oh, she also said, "I'm not going to put you on a medication just to lose weight."  If she was listening to me she would have known I didn't want to be on it because of that!  After this I lost all trust in her treatment.

The remainder of the appointment she spends complaining about all the time she is spending with me and how it's going into her other appointments.  She, again, goes on and on about her name and how to pronounce it.  She goes over my blood work.  Oh hey, 0.42 TSH is in "normal" range!  Oh no, not this again!  No, I feel terrible at that level!  It's not normal for me!  Finally she goes into her plan for me.  She is taking me off 120mg of Armour and putting me on 100mcg of Synthroid.  I'll do this because I need some type of thyroid medication to live!  I have to have labs done on 2 different days and fasting before each one.  She's going over everything so quickly I ask her if she's writing it down for me because my short term memory has been off lately.  She tells me if that's the case, then I need to bring someone with me to help me next time.  Then again, goes over how to pronounce her name.  Wow, thanks.

I set up my next appointment and leave, then get in my car and start bawling.  I cry driving all the way home.  When I get home I start researching naturopathic doctors.

I already forgot how to pronounce her last name.

PART 2: The Naturopath

Not all naturopathic doctors dabble in autoimmune issues, so in my search I am looking for one who does and is close by.  The search is limited.  There's one in Rochester, but their initial appointment is pushing $400 (It may have even been $450, can't remember) and I just couldn't afford that.  Also, naturopathy is not "recognized" in NY state so they are not covered under insurance, nor are they allowed to write scripts for blood work or prescriptions.

I find one in Ithaca who says she can.  I send and e-mail of inquiry and in response I am told the initial appointment is around $250 (Better than $400  so that works for me!), but they are booking into September (and it's currently April or May, I can't even remember anymore)! So until I can get in, I am referred to a local ND whose initial appointment $150, additional appointments $75.  I like this, but since I have lost faith in endocrinologists, my primary is going to need to work with her as far as blood work and medication.  I have a good, long standing relationship with my primary doctor so this shouldn't be a problem.

The initial appointment with the local ND is great!  She is extremely thorough, going through my history, realizing and taking into consideration much of what is listed in my medical history is incorrect, misdiagnosed, and/or is irrelevant to my current situation.  She starts to confirm all my suspicions and research that I have done on T4/T3 treatment and why I am feeling ill.  Then, I knew it was coming and I dreaded it, she advises I need to change my diet.  No gluten, dairy, peanuts, red wines. Limit red meats, poultry, certain fruits, sugar, salt, and the majority of soy products, plus cut the carbs.  I need an anti-inflammatory diet.

She listens to me, explains things so I can understand them.  She goes over the blood work the last endocrinologist wrote for me & found out she wasn't even going to check my T3 at all! I'm adding a lot of vitamins and supplements to my diet.  I need to speak with my primary, get blood work done, put on an additional T3 medication, and go back on Armour Thyroid.  I'm so glad I did this!  The next day I call and cancel the future appointment I had set up with my 4th endocrinologist.  I'm OVER the terrible treatment I have had with them!

PART 3: TheAftermath

I have to gut out my fridge, freezer, and pantry of the foods I can't eat.  Wegmans has a good selection of gluten free food!  Unfortunately, most of the stuff that is gluten free has additional ingredients I need to be avoiding.  So I'd find something and, oh there's dairy in it.  Or, nope, that has soy, or that has peanuts.  I started crying in the middle of the supermarket.  It has gotten a little easier with time, but oh, what I would do for a Domino's chicken alfredo bread bowl every now and then!  Or pizza with fluffy crust!  Or, OMG, REAL ICE CREAM! *SOB*

The week after I saw my ND, on a Monday, I went into my primary's office.  I saw an NP who wrote scripts to for my thyroid blood work and I went to have my blood drawn.  I had already switched back to the Synthroid and my pain was getting worse each week that went by.  Then that Thursday I got a phone call from my NP.  She asks, "You're taking your medication every day?  At the same time?  You aren't eating or anything when you take it?"  Um, why am I getting drilled with questions?  What's going on?

My TSH was 17.11!  In addition to that, my Free T4 is low end of the reference range, my Total T3, Free T3 are low, and my Reverse T3 is at the high end of the reference range.  No wonder I was feeling like crap!  Everything is opposite of where it should be!

What concerned me the most was my TSH being 17.  I did a little research and found out that when my new endocrinologist changed me from my Armour Thyroid back to Synthroid she didn't do the conversion right and cut my dosing in HALF when it really only needed to be adjusted very minimally.  I had only been on Synthroid for a little over a month and can only imagine where I would have been if I would have kept course.

So, after being grilled with the questions by my NP she got me a script to get back on the Armour Thyroid, same dosing as before, & added on additional T3.  Within a few weeks I already started to feel better.  She wouldn't fill the dosing for the Cytomel (T3) at the amount the ND requested, but I saw my actual primary doctor a few weeks later, she collaborated with my ND, then raised the amount.

Some time has passed & now I'm subclinical hyperthyroid.  TSH low, T3 levels kind of in the middle of where they should be.  It still is going to take some more time to even out and labs to figure out the next step of action with me.  My overall health is doing well and I've lost a lot of weight.  It's amazing the roller coaster I've gone through all because of one stupid organ.  I'm only hoping my levels stay even and I don't get sick again.

And now that we're in September I'll be going to the new ND soon.  Eventually I'll write my experiences.  My goal?  To stop writing about my thyroid and autoimmune problems because I'll be feeling better.  Then I can start writing about more fun products and projects I am working on instead of depressing stuff about how terrible & misunderstood medical treatment is for thyroid autoimmune diseases!  I've been doing them, but more behind the scenes as of late.  You'll probably see more of them in my Instragram or Twitter as of now but hopefully I'll remember to post the stuff to my Facebook page now & then too.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Love your booty & keep it fresh with Booty Fresh!

My best friends and I are always complaining about butt problems, so much so that if you know us well enough, or follow us, you will often see us mention either, "Butt problems," or, "Occupado!"  So when I saw the opportunity to test out Booty Fresh I jumped right on it!  For this post I teamed up with my bestie, Brown.  I transferred some of the product into a spray bottle like the one it came in, gave her the directions, and we were good to go.

After a little bit of time I asked my number 2 for her opinions on the product.  I'm going to get it out there right away that we both came to the conclusion this is not a product we would buy.  BUTT, it did have its pros and cons and I think there is a market out there for it.  So, I'm going to start with some details about the product and its claims, then Brown will give her opinions, then I will give mine.

  • Retails $35.00 for 4oz on Amazon.
  • About The Product:
    • GET WHERE SOAPS, WIPES, AND TOILET PAPER CAN'T: Take Poo Pourri a step further! Toilet Paper leaves little bits behind. Simply cleaning the surface with soap & water is not enough, because bacteria has sunk into the skin. Booty Fresh pulls out what you've been sitting in all day.
    • UNSCENTED & EXTRA SOOTHING: Booty Fresh is made with soothing aloe vera & leaves your bum smelling like... well...  nothing! That part is for you to decide.
    • EXTRACT & NEUTRALIZE ODOR-CAUSING BACTERIA: Booty Fresh is not a cover up nor a perfume. With one full application of Booty Fresh, & with normal bathing, you won't notice offensive odor from the offending area for up to 7 days. This stuff works!
    • IMPROVE YOUR LOVE LIFE: We spend so much time on our hair, face, and outward appearance, but then we forget our most offensive area! Finish the job, and have the complete confidence that you are clean and sexy.
    • IBS, CROHN'S DISEASE, INDIGESTION: Manage embarrassing fetor caused by bodily ailments.
    • ALL NATURAL: Safe to spray in mouth & safe to swallow. (Yuck! We DO NOT recommend.)
    • PET USE OK.
    • HASSLE FREE GUARANTEE: Contact Amazon within 30 days for a full money back refund.
  • How To Use: Approximately every 2 days, hold product upside-down and spray 3-4 properly aimed sprays directly on washed and dried booty.  Let product sit for 3-5 minutes or more then rinse or wipe off.
Now for what my best friend thought...

"Pros: smells good, does not leave residue on your skin, low irritation in certain areas.
Cons: will irritate certain lady areas so watch where you spray.  Steps of usage.

I was really not impressed with the overall product. First you spray it on before you shower, and you have to wait 5 minutes prior to bathing. This being the case, you are going to be washing yourself in the shower, in that area with soap and water so it eliminates the need for the product. This sequence of use makes it almost Impossible to know if the product is effective or not.

I would have enjoyed the product more if this was something you could use in between bathing, say post workout, when camping or traveling, or on hot days or times you need to freshen up down there and a shower is not an option."

Now my thoughts...

First off there's a design flaw.  It comes in a manual spray bottle with a tube that goes to the bottom of the bottle for the product, so you really cannot hold it upside-down and spray as all the air will go to to where the tube opening is & no product will come out.  I was able to disconnect the tube from the cap & get it to work that way.  It's also not that easy to aim and spray.  It will take a few times for you to get it right.

Considering hydrogen peroxide is the second ingredient in this, for us women, it may cause a little irritation the closer you get it to your baby cannon.  I got a little tingling when I first started using it, before I became a Booty Fresh applying pro.  That's all it was though, just a little tingle, nothing more.

You could recommend it to patients if you're in the professions of proctology, gastroenterology, esthetics, obstetrics & gynecology.  You NEED this if you're a stripper.  Or if you're into that kinky shit where you and/or your partner have your faces down in that region doing God knows what, I assure you this will probably make it more enjoyable.  Oh and the dreaded butt problems, this will help keep you fresh through those tough times.

They claim it is safe for pets but aloe is considered poisonous to both cats and dogs!  Usually pets have to ingest a lot for it to become dangerous to them but I wouldn't take any chances.

It has no scent that I could detect and I feel it did a great job at keeping my booty fresh!  The application and removal process is a bit much, in my opinion.  I would prefer it in a gel, aerosol, or wipe instead of the spray, and something that I could just apply and not have to wipe off, just for more convenience.  It DOES really work though after continuous use!  You can't just use it once then determine if it's effective or not.

It's currently on sale for $24.95 (plus shipping) at Amazon.  Try it once and see what you think!  Makes a great gag gift too just for the name and packaging.  Plus I'm sure we ALL know SOMEONE who really needs this!

This is a sponsored post. I received this free from Rubicoux LLC / Booty Fresh to try, review, and supply my honest opinion.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Make One Switch to Purina ONE® Cat food.

I had been selected to "review" Purina ONE® dry cat food and my kitties couldn't have been more excited!  Ok, so I personally am not reviewing this, my cats are.  As I'm sure you are also aware, my cats also cannot speak to me like a human.  So if I were to interview them about this I would either be (a) ignored, or (b) meowed at in which I would have no clue how to translate.  Instead, this post will mostly be about the product and I'll try to do my best job translating how my cat felt about it.

I received a bag of  their Chicken & Turkey dry cat food and 'Alohi couldn't have been any more excited!  My gosh, she made it known!

So, why make the One Switch?

Purina has been an innovator on creating products to help us take care of our pets for over 85 years.  From being the first pet food in grocery with real chicken as the #1 ingredient, lowering their environmental impact by reducing water usage and waste, to formulating their foods with SMARTBLEND® to provide your pet with balanced nutrition.  If you click on the picture above it will take you to their site where you can compare their brand to others.  It shows for each product selected, their top 5 ingredients all the way down to vitamins, helping you select what's best for your cat!  You'll see they're quite comparable.  Unsure if it's right for you?  Ask your vet!

Cats can be sensitive to food changes so it's imperative that you do it gradually.  Purina shows you how easy it can be to make the One Switch in a week!
  • Days 1–2: Introduce Purina ONE to your cat in small amounts, still feeding primarily his or her old food.
  • Days 3–4: Feed a little bit more Purina ONE to your cat each day.
  • Days 5–6: Gradually increase the amount of Purina ONE food and decrease your cat’s former food until you are feeding Purina ONE exclusively.
  • Days 7–10: By now you should be feeding your cat exclusively Purina ONE.

Unfortunately my older kitty came down with a bad bout of diarrhea before I even got the food and is now on a diet of prescription food and meds before I can even attempt to switch him, but my younger cat, 'Alohi, made the One Switch!  As you can see in the video above she was so excited.

Their old food, which they both shared, after I would feed them they would eat just a little and then go about their cat day, doing cat things.  Then eat a little more here and there, but there would always be a little left in the bowls, or pieces all over the floor by the bowl. With the Purina ONE, she is fed and it's gone quickly leaving her full and satisfied until her next feeding.  I know this because if she wasn't she would make it known!  You heard how loud she is!

Milton wishes he could have made the One Switch.
Once Milton's tummy settles down I hope I can make the One Switch with him.  Based off the information I have, I'm confident in their product.  Plus they make a Sensitive Systems food which I think could be best to feed them both.

The prices can range dramatically depending where you get it, but Purina has set up a pretty good Where to Buy page.  Put in the food and size you are looking for and under "Shop Online" you can see competitors and their pricing.  While you're on their page, go & register to get a $2 off coupon!

This is a sponsored post. I received this as a free sample from Influenster & Purina ONE to try, review, and supply my honest opinion.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Wipe for Water with Neutrogena® Naturals Purifying Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes

Do you know that every day you can waste up to 5 gallons of water just by washing your face?  When I wash my face, depending what I'm using, I probably waste more than that now that I think about it.  I'm all about recycling, being "Earth friendly," reducing waste, & using natural products too, but I'm not perfect and could really be doing more on my part to help the environment.

So when Neutrogena® Naturals teamed up with Kristen Bell and The Nature Conservancy for their Wipe for Water campaign to support water conservation, I was all over it!  Neutrogena® Naturals will contribute 10% of the retail purchase price on Neutrogena® Naturals Purifying Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes sold in the United States from April 1-June 30, 2015, as well as $1 per pledge made at to The Nature Conservancy, with a combined maximum contribution of $50,000 on the retail sales and pledges.  Take the pledge and share the impact of your water savings.  Below, watch the video for their mission then read my thoughts on the product!
  • Retails $3.24 for 7 count, $7.49 for 25 count.
  • About the product: These 97% naturally derived, ultra-soft wipes are clinically proven to completely remove dirt, oil and makeup, targeting even the most stubborn long-wearing and waterproof makeup.  Skin is left purified, fresh and healthy-looking with no greasy residue, so there's no need to rinse.  Made from naturally-derived fibers that come from sustainably-managed forests.  Contains Peruvian Tara Seed bionutrient which hydrates and softens skin naturally.  Rich in Vitamin C, B and complex sugars.  Tara seed works within the skin to boost moisture levels and help prevent dehydration while strengthening skin’s natural moisture barrier.
  • What I Thought: Not sure if it's because of the green packaging that made my senses do this but it had a light apple-like scent to it.  The cloth is definitely softer than other facial wipes I have used but a downside of them is they are not biodegradable.  Though you're saving water, you are adding to a landfill somewhere with unknown results on how quickly, if at all, this product will break down.  I do say it's great at removal of stubborn makeup as you can see in my pictures below.  My skin felt a little flush after using but it didn't last very long.  It dried rather quickly and left my skin feeling soft & moisturized for long after.
  • I would be open to buying it.

 $3.24 is a good price to try it for a week and see if you like it before you splurge.  Also check out and Neutrogena's Special Offers & Coupons for a variety of their products!

This is a sponsored post. I received this as a free sample from Crowdtap & Neutrogena® Naturals to try, review, and supply my honest opinion.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Doctor shopping. Should you do it? (Why I left my last 3 Endocrinologists.)

I don't want anyone reading this to get discouraged about their health if they are suffering with autoimmune diseases.  I want you to take it as a learning lesson.  My life is not yours.  Don't think that having thyroid disease, Hashimoto's, Graves' disease, or whatever you have is going to bring you down the same paths I have been.  I've had many doctors tell me that thyroid disorders are some of the most difficult diseases to diagnose and treat.  You may have a fantastic doctor who is just trying to find the right treatment for you and these adjustments in your treatment, or medication, may take months to kick in.

What you NEED to do is look for warning signs that your doctor may not be right for you.  You're paying them to make you better so you deserve the best treatment you can get!  If you don't understand what they are doing or why they are doing it, ASK!  How do they respond to your questions?  Do they give you a clear explanation?  Do they take their time with you and not rush you out of their office?

Why I left my last 3 endocrinologists:

1) When my 1st endocrinologist told me my Graves' disease / hyperthyroidism had nothing to do with my anxiety.
Oh ok, you're the specialist and how dare I question your treatment even though my body feels all messed up still.  Why am I leaving your practice you ask?  I don't think I need to give an explanation.  He even had the NERVE to call my pharmacy to put in to NOT refill my thyroid medication after I told them I was leaving.  This caused problems when I got the new script from my 2nd endocrinologist.  Luckily that was quickly cleared up.

2) When my 2nd endocrinologist lied to me.

He was the one that pushed my thyroidectomy, and after that, when I was feeling symptomatic and had all these new issues,  I asked if he was testing other levels instead of just TSH.  "So you just tested my T4/T3 & Free T4/T3 and all my vitamin levels?" He said, "Yes." Got my labs and only TSH was done.

I might still have been with that endocrinologist today if he hadn't lied to me.  How hard is it to write on a script to have certain things tested for when I ask for it?  They aren't paying for it, my insurance is.  He could have at least humored me and ordered it and then just not look at the other results if he really didn't care.  But to lie to me?  It's unacceptable.

3) When my 3rd endocrinologist just wouldn't listen about how I was feeling.

My last health post was pretty much dedicated to the fine disaster that came from this doctor.  I would love to have said I TOLD YOU! to him but I'm not an asshole.  I could tell just by the look on his face at my last appointment that he knew he made a mistake.  His lesson will be losing me as a patient.


These doctors were not right for me.  It doesn't mean that that are not right for other people.  Some people do fine on synthetic T4 medications, some don't!  (Before I had my thyroidectomy, and before I had Graves' I did just fine on synthetic T4.)  Since I am going to live with this the rest of my life I need to understand it and I need to have doctors help me regulate it and understand it.  Again, everyone is different.  Reference ranges for blood tests don't mean you are necessarily going to feel fine within those ranges.


Now I know it's easier said than done to say, "Hey! Don't get discouraged!"  My panic attacks have gone full blown again.  I had, maybe, 1 day last week where I didn't have at least one.  That in addition to my depression is keeping me inside most of the time, unless someone drags me out of the house.  Due to this my doctors have pulled me from work for at least 2 months to give me time to see my new doctors and get tests done and, hopefully, get the right treatment.  I also now have a swollen lingual tonsil that is driving me insane and I went to my ENT about it maybe 3x and feel like going in again because it has been over a month and isn't getting any better.  If anything, it's getting worse and causing my speech to be more raspy.  All of this, and personal matters brought me down so low there was a few times I really scared myself.

Then a day before my appointment with my new endocrinologist I got a call saying she needed to reschedule.  Ok.  So, what's the earliest we can do that?  The woman tells me at the END OF JUNE!  No!  This can't be happening to me!  Instant panic and I'm crying on the phone with her.  I'm out of work.  I already cancelled my appointment with my old endocrinologist.  I set up the appointment but I'm wondering what can I do to get treated before.  Who's a good endocrinologist who I haven't gone to see yet, or naturopath / neuropathy that maybe can help me?  I left a message for my therapist advising what I was told and I felt lost and on the search again.  An hour later, they call back & tell me they can get me in on Monday!  What a relief!  Though everything worked out for the better and I could now relax, not much later the pain of another panic attack hit.