Sarah Mayland

Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Saving Money

In Reviews on 03/29/2011 at 19:46

Anyone who knows me can tell you that one of the things that is most difficult for me to do is save money.  I’m not a crazy crazy spender where I get myself into trouble or anything with my spending, but I do it enough that I’m a paycheck to paycheck person.  As I mentioned in my last post I joined AVON as an eRepresentative and saved a good deal of money on my makeup.  My very first order arrived today and I decided to crunch the numbers and see how much money I actually saved by switching over my makeup regimen.

Here’s what I got from AVON with the prices as listed in the brochure:
Foundation: $7.99
Pressed Powder: $7.99
Concealer Stick:  $3.99
Primer: $6.99
Cream Blush Stick: $5.99
Eyeliner:  $1.99
Eye Makeup Remover: $1.99

So I spent a total of $36.93 (plus, since I’m a rep, I get 40% of that back)…now check out how much I would spend for the same makeup regimen at Bare Minerals (where I used to get my makeup):
Foundation:  $28
Concealer:  $18
Mineral Veil (what the pressed powder is now used for):  $19
Primer:  $21
Eyeliner:  $14
Bronzer (they gave me that instead of blush):  $18

Plus in order to apply the Bare Minerals makeup you need brushes, so add:
Concealer Brush:  $20
Foundation Brush: $28
Blush Brush: $18

So the total I would pay at Bare Minerals is $181.  So by switching to AVON I saved myself $144.07. 

This is a step in the right direction — hopefully I won’t spend all of this extra money on yarn!

One of the tools I use to help save money is Mint.com, which enables me to make budgets and track my spending over the course of the month.  It also lets you see how much debt you have proportionate to your income, and alerts you when you spend more than what you had budgeted for in a certain category.

Yay Saving!!!!

Advertisements

Deviation — My Fragrance Collection

In Perfume, Reviews on 01/12/2011 at 21:21

Anyone who has read my profile on Ravelry knows that aside from being a reasonably avid knitter and crocheter, I am a full-time student majoring in Psychology, and I work full-time at a perfume store.  I HATE working in retail (and my boss and I clash quite a bit), but working here is great because it’s not a big corporation and between customers, I can do whatever I want (i.e. study and knit). 

With anything I do, I try to read up a bit on it and learn as much as I can about what I’m doing.  I like to learn some historical tidbits and some trivia.  Aside from being exposed to a ton of new scents (whenever I test something for a customer), I’ve been reading reviews, and have gotten some great fragrances for myself.

There are a few categories into which women’s fragrances are typically sorted, some examples being oriental, floral, floriental (a mixture of floral and oriental), fruity, clean, sweet.  I tend to prefer a good floral or a rich, earthy oriental smell.  I never used to wear perfume, but now without it I don’t feel dressed, and I can actually match which fragrance I put on to how I’m feeling. 

Here is my collection thus far:

1.  Burberry
I prefer their classic fragrance, which includes notes of  peach, apricot, sandalwood, amber, cedar, and musk.  I typically veer away from the fruits, but they wear off quickly and on the skin remains a nice earthy smell.  For me this is a great fall-back fragrance.  I wear this when I don’t know what to wear, knowing that this is appropriate for any season and any occasion.  Burberry fragrances in general are long-lasting on the skin and moderately priced.  I highly recommend them.

2.  Very Valentino
I would describe this as a light floral.  There are also notes of sandalwood, amber, and musk in here, and when I wear this, I feel classy.  I usually wear this when I’m in one of two moods: either I am dressed up and going out and feel beautiful, or I think I look like crap and I want to wear this  to make me feel better.

3.  Gucci Flora
I used to really like this, and am now not as fond of it as I used to be.  It’s a light floral with a really sweet base to it, and it doesn’t have a tremendous amount of personality.  But  it smells nice and I wear it sometimes when I’m in the mood for something a little younger-smelling.

4.  Sira Des Indes by Jean Patou
This was an expensive bugger, and I had to have my boss special order it for me because whenever I ask someone in the department store for it, they have no idea what I’m talking about.  This is a love or hate fragrance, and I love it.  This, I believe, is named after an Indian dessert, and it certainly has a lot of sweet notes in it.  It develops beautifully and is really cool.  I get a lot of compliments on it.  Try to buy it discount, as the last I heard, the retail price is $158.

5.  Gaultier 2
This is one of the fragrances I have had the longest.  The smell lasts FOREVER on the skin and clothes.  Beware — there is a heavy milky note at the beginning which is weird and a little gross, but after about an hour it develops into this gorgeous, rich, spicy smell that it just so warm and comforting.  This is strictly a winter smell.

6.  Tom Ford Black Orchid
This is my most recent acquisition.  This also has a weird top note, but that wears off after about an hour and then the scent is very beautiful.  This one serves the same purpose as the Valentino, but this scent is much more substantial.  This is an investment, but a good one.  Notes in this include: Patchouli, Sandalwood, Truffle, Dark Chocolate, Ylang-Ylang, Black Currant, Bergamot, Orchid, Incense, and Vanilla.  I used to shy away from Patchouli for fear of smelling like a hippie, but I’ve acquired a fondness for it as long as it’s mixed well.

On my to-buy list:

  • Sycomore by Chanel
  • Prada
  • Givenchy Hot Couture
  • Tom Ford White Patchouli
  • Joy by Patou
  • Bois des Iles by Chanel (as soon as they release a smaller bottle)
  • Un Jardin en Mediterranee by Hermes (VERY earthy)

 

Bye for Now! ❤

Going Off The Grid…Briefly

In Reviews on 09/02/2010 at 19:15

On Tuesday (my lone day off work), I drove to the main campus of the community college that I  attend to buy my textbooks for this semester.  On my way home, I decided to take some back roads, and boy, I’m glad I did.  I drove past a place called Stratton’s Wynnorr Farm on Rt 926 (East Street Road) in Glen Mills.

What originally caught my eye was a sign that advertised wool and yarn.  I pulled in, and read the sign more closely.  Realizing they didn’t open until 3 pm, I pulled out an headed home, deciding to come back later.  I was going to buy some wool at my LYS, but I’ve never bought yarn that comes from a sheep I can actually see, so I thought it  might  be  fun to give it a try.

I got there a little after 3 (for this trip my voice teacher accompanied me), and the place was hoppin’.  Cars filled the parking area, and people of all ages were wandering around the farmer’s market, feeling up tomatoes and whatnot.  I was really excited about this because the only farmer’s market by my house is only open Thursday-Saturday, and I always work those days.  There was a really nice selection of produce at the market: peaches, peppers, zucchini, corn, cucumbers, eggplant…etc.  They had some cheeses, jellies, mustard, some pies and breads, homemade lemonade, root beer, birch beer, pickled vegetables, and some cheese spread.  But where was the wool?

Apparently the wool was being stored in the shed, which was barricaded with boxes.  A woman brought me a sample card and said that if I could tell her which wool I wanted, she would go in and look for it  and bring it out to me.  I asked for 2 skeins of a super-bulky undyed wool and 4 skeins of a 2-ply wool that was dyed a shade of grey called “oxford heather.”  She went to look for the yarn, and I started shopping.

I got 6 ears (is that what they’re called?) of corn, some string beans, hot peppers for my stepfather, some honey for my honey (thank god that stuff lasts forever because I don’t eat it), some jalapeno cheddar cheese, and some garlic and dill cheddar cheese  (both made from raw milk).  I smelled some sweet mushroom mustard (which smelled AMAZING) but it just wasn’t in my budget. 

The lady brought the wool out…literally half of what I requested.  She could only find 1 skein of the super-bulky and 2 skeins of the gray, but that was fine because I wasn’t looking to spend a lot of money anyway.  The wool was $7 a skein.  It came in hanks, not skeins (I should have been a little more accurate), and the 2 ply was a bit  over  200 yards.  The woman said the yarn is great for felting, and I understand why.  It is scratchy as hell.  The super-bulky wasn’t too scratchy, and that has already been knit into a cowl, for which I will post a pattern soon.  The super-bulky knits up fast, and blocks BEAUTIFULLY.  The stitches looked amazing after I blocked this.  The 2 play grey yarn is waiting to be used, and I can confidently say that I will not use this for an item that can be worn.  This yarn will become a felted clutch or two.

One problem…when I was winding one of the hanks of the grey yarn into a ball, a moth flew out of the yarn.  That stuff went in the freezer so fast you can’t imagine.  I examined the yarn and it doesn’t look like it’s been eaten or anything.

Consolation?  The garlic and dill cheese was AMAZING.