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What’s in a Box?

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Who has heard of Influenster? What in the world is it all about? An acquaintance introduced me to the site after she shared reviews of some samples or test products she received to try and review. Interestingly, most of the products she tested and tried were full sized samples. Curious, I joined to see what the deal was.

Influenster is a social media site that collaborates with companies to have people like you and me try and test out their products in exchange for honest reviews about the products. It serves mainly as a database for anyone to search for reviews on almost anything and everything under the sun. You’re encouraged to link your social media accounts to build a presence on Influenster and increase chances of earning a VoxBox, or specially curated box of samples from various vendors to sample and review. Every product in the box has challenges or tasks that one must complete in order to earn badges for their profile or to gain more experience points tied to their account. In turn, this helps bolster your account’s credibility and increases your chances of earning another VoxBox in the future.

Trying out products for free in exchange for sharing candid opinions? Sounds like fun to me! I answered a few questions about one potential VoxBox (these come as surveys which vet which individuals will receive the VoxBoxes) and received an e-mail from Insfluenster saying I was chosen to receive the Daisy VoxBox to review.

The VoxBoxes ship via USPS and typically arrive within a week from the date you are selected. You need to select the option to ‘Check in’ your box once it’s received on your account. All of the items in the VoxBox pictured above were complimentary.

The Daisy VoxBox seems to focus on healthy pursuits, hence the SkinnyPop sample, coconut-based Live Clean Shampoo and Conditioner, Yes to Charcoal face mask, Nature’s Bounty Probiotic Gummies, sample of Always Pads, and coupons for Dannon’s Light and Fit Greek Yogurt. So far I’ve only tried out the gummies but the rest of the box seems pretty interesting!

Interested in joining up and offering your opinion? Check out their site at my link here.

You’re Worth Living For

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Who knew that one novel introduced to me via one of my English professors would become one of my favorite books? With a title like The Elegance of the Hedgehog, it certainly sounds amusing and like something worth looking at. But why bother reading when we’re surrounded by technology and the newest ‘it’ device? Well I’d advise you pick up this book, sit back, and enjoy reading about a woman and a young girl stuck in a bourgeois society in Paris, France.

Renee is a middle-aged concierge of a middle class apartments complex who appears on the surface to be the average, soap opera watching stereotype that the tenants assume she is. Behind closed doors, she is intellectual and avid about philosophy and art but chooses to hide the truth as a guard. 12 year old Paloma is tired of being surrounded by her rich, presumptuous family and plans to commit suicide on her 13th birthday unless she finds something that is so beautiful in this world that convinces her to live. Their secrets begin to unravel when a new tenant from Japan moves in and befriends both them. 

Before you start saying, Oh this is only going to have drama and too many rich snobs I loathe, think again. The novel includes various character backgrounds from the middle class, to the poor, to the hopeless goners, to the brightest of minds. Barbery provides plenty of touching, interesting, and comical moments throughout her book that should satisfy a variety of readers.

Intrigued? Pick up a copy and see for yourself!