REVIEW: Glasses for less than you expect from GlassesUSA

As a four-eyes with no option to wear contacts (yay for horrible astigmatism!), glasses are my go-to accessory. If these are going to be stuck on my face for all hours of the day, I want them to be an extension of my style! The glasses industry is definitely not what it used to be, where I used to only be able to update my frames once every other year because of the expensive pricing. Nowadays, we can get prescription glasses for $150 and under, which makes it easier to justify multiple pairs to keep our looks feeling fresh (sound familiar?)!

When the GlassesUSA.com team got in touch for a review, of course I had to say yes! Today’s GlassesUSA.com review is for a pair of frames that are a bit outside of my colour comfort zone. As someone who loves black frames coloured, these brown pair of Barbara frames somehow swayed me to try something new.

glassesUSA review

Frame selection
There were so many amazing frames to choose from on GlassesUSA.com! From Chloe to Ray-Ban to Adidas, it was great to see so many options for less than what most in-person optical shops sell frames for. I decided to select these Barbara frames because of the intriguing blended colour and price tag of $125, including prescription lenses!

Shipping and delivery packaging
Shipping time was one of the most impressive parts of submitting my order! I put my order in at the beginning of the week, and within a week my glasses arrived. The packaging of the glasses surprised me from a minimal waste perspective. The glasses arrived in a hard case, wrapped in a corrugated box (the “Nice to See You!” box in these photos), and placed in a FedEx mailer. No bubble wrap or extra waste!

glassesUSA review barbara glasses

Glasses wear and tear
On one of the first days of receiving these frames, I took them apple picking in torrential downpour. Not only was water dripping down for 2 hours straight, but the frames were also put to the test from the cold temperatures. They held up really nicely and the cleaning cloth that came with the frames came in handy!


If you’re in the market for new glasses, GlassesUSA.com it offering an amazing 50% discount on non-premium frames (the brown Barbara frames qualify!) with free shipping when you sign up for their newsletter!

Disclosure: This GlassesUSA.com review was made possible thanks to the kind folks at the company. The glasses were provided courtesy of GlassesUSA, but all opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own.

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Tazo Tea: Maintaining zen throughout the day

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tazo® Tea for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

Growing up in a family that loves green tea blends, tea has played an important role in our morning and evening routines. I have so many fond memories of my parents steeping a pot of green tea at the end of dinner, giving us time as a family to sit and chat about our days while sipping joyfully. There are so many ways to enjoy tea throughout a day, not just at the beginning or end of one. I’m excited to partner with Tazo® Tea to highlight the Zen™ hot filterbag and how I like to prep and enjoy it! I selected Zen, a harmonious blend of green tea with lemongrass and spearmint, because of my love for green teas and mint flavour. Not to mention, I’ve enjoyed this blend numerous times outside of this blog post and love how easy it is to pair with other fruits for all day long tea sipping.
Tazo tea blend, Zen

At Tazo, tea is a celebration of flavour and aroma that adds a little excitement to the day. They focus their teas around taste, crafting them with exhilarating, unexpected flavor blends that delight the senses. The Zen is no exception. I like to pair the Zen blend with other citrus fruits to compliment the lemongrass and further amplify the spearmint. Lemon or lime is my favourite, especially for a mid-day refreshment.

Tazo Zen tea with lime

One of my faovurite times to enjoy a cup of tea is in the early afternoon. With the Seattle weather being in an intermediate Summer to Fall transition, the weather often shifts from brisk morning winds to warmer afternoons. I like to steep the tea, add a slice of lime during the steeping, and then take the tea on the go. Tea is the perfect afternoon drink, especially one like Zen where the caffeine level is not extremely high, so that my bed time isn’t affected.

Tazo Zen tea blend infused with lime

Having a fruit infuser water bottle is amazing for taking tea on the go! After getting splashed in the face a few too many times by fruit slices, I invested in a double walled fruit infuser water bottle. This makes transporting and enjoying the lime-infused tea a lot more pleasant. I’m excited to try and get even more creative with Tazo® Tea in the future! With other blends like Passion® and Awake™ English Breakfast, the infusion combos are endless. If you’re a big fan of tea like I am, head to Tazo.com to find Tazo tea near you!

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REVIEW + GIVEAWAY: Caseapp custom iPhone case

At the beginning of this year, I became what I feel like I’ve been destined to become… a cat mom. It’s been a hard journey in being a crazy cat lady because, as much as I love cats, I’m actually super allergic to them. I tried to adopt a cat back in 2014 (remember Gramps?), but my allergies flared up beyond control after only a month of living with him, and I thought he was the be-all-end-all for adventures in being a cat mom. Thanks to the stars aligning almost 2 years later, I’m now the proud mom of a sweet, fire point Siamese kitty named Sushi Magoo.

caseapp custom iphone case
In true obsessive cat mom form, my fridge is covered in photos of dear little Sushi Magoo. After given the opportunity to create my own custom iPhone case through Caseapp, my phone is now covered in her face too! haha :)

Caseapp has a handful of pre-made templates that made it super easy to design this custom phone case. The hardest part was trying to figure out which photos to use. Taking one of my favourite photos of Sushi ever (with her signature deer-in-the-headlights look), I made this fun collage of her face on a case!

I asked what she thought about the case… she didn’t seem to find it as funny or cute as I do:

caseapp custom iphone case

a Rafflecopter giveaway


I’m super stoked to be partnered with Caseapp to give away a custom iPhone case on the blog today. This giveaway is open to all readers (including international ones!) so enter away! Giveaway ends on August 21, 2016.

If you just can’t wait for this giveaway to end and you’re looking to make a case ASAP, the friendly folks over at Caseapp are offering 20% off your whole purchase with code THEDEMUREMUSE20 from now until September 1, 2016.

DISCLOSURE: I received the custom iPhone case courtesy of Caseapp in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed about the product and process is 100% my own.

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REVIEW: Carbonated bubble clay mask

A few weeks ago, I saw an ad pop up in my Facebook newsfeed for a carbonated bubble clay mask review. I watched this ad video for 2 minutes and still couldn’t quite figure out what was happening in it (yay for non-English product review videos with no subtitles!), so I decided to look for the face mask myself. I ended up purchasing the top-rated Korean product, Elizavecca Milky Piggy Carbonated bubble clay mask, for under $11 off of Amazon. Here’s what my experience was like using face mask!

carbonated bubble face mask review via the demure muse

For starters, all of the labels on the box and the product itself are in Korean, so I had to look up instructions online for how to even use the face mask! Application was simple: paste on a thin, even layer of the mask on the face and let it sit for 5 minutes. The carbonation and bubbles formed quite quickly and it felt like my face was being tickled within the first 30 seconds of applying the mask. Once the bubbles start to pop (after the 5 minutes), wet your hands and gently massage the remainder of the mask on your face for another 2 minutes.

The product claims that the carbonated bubbles help to better clean out pores and blackheads, so I’m basing my review off of this claim on top of my overall experience with the face mask.

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Summer essentials

The long weekend is almost here! Any fun plans to celebrate Canada Day (July 1) or Independence Day (July 4)? In the past, my Canadian friends and I here in Seattle would celebrate both (never a better excuse to have back-to-back BBQs or potlucks!), but this year it looks like Canada Day crept up on us and we forgot to plan something. Plus, July 1st lands on a work day, so… to the office it is!

As for the July 4th weekend, this would be the perfect time of year for a quick roadtrip! Today, I’m rounding up a set of Summer essentials to take along on the road in case you’re heading out of town this weekend:

Summer Essentials

Reading Materials: I’ve been listening to the #GIRLBOSS podcast and falling more and more in love with Sophia Amoruso on the weekly. She’s featured in this month’s issue of Forbes that highlights the richest self-made women, which I loved reading and learning more about her story from. I won’t divulge any secrets, but it was so fascinating to see big names like Beyonce and Taylor Swift ranked against all other self-made women in America vs the global market of influential women.

Aside from Forbes, I’ve got Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking on my current reading list. I started this book earlier this month when on a weekend trip to the countryside. It’s written by Malcolm Gladwell, who is best known for his bestseller Outliers: The Story of Success. I guess you can see the trend in my current reading materials, hah! ;) Either way, a good book is never a bad thing when on the road.

Face & Body wipes: When on the road, you never know when you’re going to find a bathroom or shower station next! It’s always handy to pack along some fresh wipes, and these Acure Organics coconut and argan oil wipes are my favourite. Not only are they organic, but they’re also 100% biodegradable! These babies triple as makeup removing wipes as well, so no need to pack multiple sets of towelettes!

Deodorant: I recently found Schmidt’s Bergamot & Lime natural deodorant in Whole Foods and absolutely fell in love. As someone who switched from antiperspirants to deodorant a few years back, I’ve been trying to find an all-natural deodorant that didn’t smell like baby powder or feel like dry soap rubbing against my skin. This one smells like a delicious candle has essential oils that help with disinfecting and skin healing.

Sun block: A few months ago, I was introduced to Block Island Organics face moisturizer with SPF 30. While I found the formula to be a bit on the thicker side for everyday use under makeup, I loved the moisturizer as a sun block. Keeping in line with the all-natural theme for my beauty routine, Block Island Organics covers all the bases: all natural and organic ingredients, scent-free, and moisturizing (shea butter and aloe)! The consistency is comparable to other non-organic products available in stores today, but bonus because there are no parabens, sulfates, dyes, or added fragrance. They’re currently offering 20% off sitewide with coupon code HAPPY4TH.

Bug spray: This is a must-have for me! As someone who is prone to being eaten alive by mosquitoes, I always have to have bug spray handy whenever on the road. This Badger Anti-Bug Shake and Spray is a dream. In the past, I’ve tried to avoid using Deet or OFF because of the awful smell and “bitterness” by only lighting Citronella candles, only to be bitten on random places like my forehead! Badger Anti-Bug is 100% natural and smells like nothing more than the Citronella candles (which I love the smell of… I know it’s not for everyone) and rosemary. Yum!

Coconut water: Always have to stay hydrated! The pineapple Zico coconut water is my current favourite. It’s refreshing and ever so slightly hinted with sweetness and pineapple goodness. I haven’t yet tried all the other new Zico flavours but am excited to explore my options if I ever get tired of this yummy pineapple one!

What are your Summer essentials?

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