Pulse by Sengled Review

For as long as I can remember I have always been enamored by the idea of controlling things with my phone. It just amazes me that you can use your phone for just about everything now! Heck, my new phone can even control my TV! In this house music is key. We all listen to music, but with two little ones running around sometimes portable speakers are not an option. Only because they tend to run around with them and dance while holding them. Of course it is super cute, but I would feel horrible if they dropped them. When I heard of Pulse by Sengled I knew I HAD to have them and I was ecstatic when they told me I could review them!

Sengled logo

It was a war in my house when they arrived. Everyone was fighting about which room they would go in and who would get to use them first. You see, these are no ordinary speakers. Not only are they bluetooth enabled, but they are light bulbs! Yes, you heard right. Speakers and light bulbs in one sleek device!


The Pulse speakers are pretty big, however they do fit in most regular light fixtures. The only issue I had was when I was putting them into fixtures that did not have enough room for them to fit. Most of the lights in our house are pretty strange as we live in an older house that could probably use some updating, but luckily I think Sengled had this in mind when they offered the bulbs in colors! I chose red as almost everything in my house is red. So we were able to take the covers off of any fixtures that the bulbs didn’t have quite enough room in order to make them fit.


You would think setting up the bulbs would be difficult, but I couldn’t believe how easy it really was! You don’t need any cords or any special software, which is awesome! They get their power from the socket itself. However, you do need an app on your phone to connect to the bulbs speakers, but the set up is about the same as a bluetooth headset. You plug the bulbs into whatever socket you want them in, download the app, connect the bulbs through bluetooth and follow the app instructions.

Not only is the setup easy peasy, but using them is very easy as well! Once you have them connected to your device you just open the app and go. Of course your light switch will have to be on in order to give it power, so make sure it is on before trying to use the app. What I find to be really awesome is that not only can you adjust the volume on the app, but you can also dim the lights! You can even turn on and off each of the speakers!

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One of my favorite features of these bulbs is that when the app is off, they do function like your typical LED bulb. You can turn the light on and off by using the switch. I was really happy about this (and worried before I tested it) that I don’t need to break out the app just to turn on the light. If my kids are playing on my phone I don’t want to be stuck without light, that and pulling out the app just to turn on the lights would make things a little time consuming. I am very glad that they made sure that the bulbs can work without it.

We are very happy with Pulse by Sengled! I think everyone should have at least one set in their home! You can find Sengled on their website here, or check them out on Facebook and Twitter.

**Disclaimer** Star Focal received samples of the above product in order to facilitate a review. However, we were in no way paid, or obligated to give a positive review, or a review at all for this company. If you would like to read my full disclaimer for reviews you can find it here .

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Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening Kit Review Part 1

As many of you know, my house is obsessed with having white teeth. We have tried just about everything and have only found a couple of things that work for us. We either run into something that does very little for our teeth, or that leaves our teeth so sensitive we never try it again. It’s never ending cycle that never gives us what we want. When Smile Brilliant contacted me about reviewing their product I was a little worried, but after I took a look at their website I became very excited.

So what is it about Smile Brilliant that has made me this excited? Not only do they offer a great whitening treatment, but as part of the whitening kit you get custom made whitening trays. They made the process really simple for us and today I will share our experience with creating our molds!

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Smile Brilliant Whitening Kit

The instructions are pretty simple which made things so easy! The first step is to brush and floss your teeth. That way if you have something stuck to your teeth you can get it off before it can ruin the mold. It may seem like its something that everyone knows you should do, but for those of us that have never made a custom mold of our teeth before it’s definitely an important step.

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Impression Tray, Base Paste and Catalyst Paste

Next you need to mix the Base Paste and the Catalyst paste until they are mixed thoroughly. I found this to be pretty easy, but there is a time limit. You must have them mixed together within one minute and get them placed in the tray. I found it easiest to make the glob into almost a snake (let’s go back to preschool please!) and then just place it into the tray.

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Paste Added To Impression Tray

Once the paste is in the tray you use your fingers to gently place the mold onto your teeth. The instructions say that you are not supposed to bite down, which according to my husband was the hardest part. He couldn’t stop laughing the whole time. We definitely had some fun with it!

After two minutes you have to take the trays out of your mouth and try not to mess up the impressions. I have to say, seeing your teeth in a mold is an interesting experience. I think its crazy that they can turn the impressions into the whitening trays.





Now the hard part is over! You just have to wait 10 minutes for the impressions to fully dry, rinse them off, throw them in the envelope and send them on their way! In 5-7 days (after they get them of course) they will have your trays ready and will send them out to you. I found the process very easy and it did not take long to do.

We are currently waiting for our whitening trays to arrive, but once they do we will share how the whitening experience goes. So stay tuned!

In the meantime be sure to check out Smile Brilliant on their website here and on Facebook and Twitter!

**Disclaimer** Star Focal received samples of the above product in order to facilitate a review. However, we were in no way paid, or obligated to give a positive review, or a review at all for this company. If you would like to read my full disclaimer for reviews you can find it here .

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Straightening Your Hair: Tips and Tricks for the Perfect ‘Do

There are so many mistakes you can make when straightening your hair; the whole ordeal can be quite stressful. However, this shouldn’t put you off. All you need to do is practice and you’ll have the most gorgeous, silky smooth hair you’ve ever laid eyes on. Here are some tips and tricks for the perfect straightened ‘do:


Don’t Go Over it Too Much

The first thing you need to do is to ensure you aren’t going over your hair too much. A lot of women straighten their hair in the same place over, and over, and over again. This is damaging your hair and giving it that dry feeling. If you go slowly enough over one piece of hair, it should be perfectly straight after one go. No more needed! For some it’s like a habit, so try to break out of it.

Section the Hair

Sectioning the hair will make the process of straightening much easier. Start by sectioning off your bottom layer and straightening with a Royale straightener, for example, and then move on to your next layer. Do as many layers as you need to until you’ve worked on your whole head.

Give a Slight Flick at The Ends

Giving a slight flick at the ends of your hair will stop it from looking over straightened. Few people can pull off poker straight hair. By flicking ever so slightly under when you get to the end of a piece, you’ll create a more natural look that frames the face. You’ll also emphasize all of the layers in your hair, making it look more voluminous and healthy.

Use Great Straightening Products

You must prep your hair before straightening, even if you aren’t washing your hair. A good heat protectant spray is essential, as this will stop your hair from becoming too damaged. You may also like to apply a frizz ease serum and a volumizing mousse. It’s always good to have volume at the crown for height, even on straight hair. This flatters the face and makes it appear slimmer. Having hair stuck flat to the head isn’t always a great look. A shine spray will finish this look off perfectly!

Add a Little Volume

There are lots of ways you can add volume to your straight hair, other than the volumizing mousse that we discussed before. Many people avoid straight hair as it sits too flat to their head and isn’t very flattering, but there are ways to combat this. You could use a crimper at the roots underneath your hair, for lasting volume that nobody can tell is fake. You can also lightly backcomb the hair at the roots, being sure to cover up with pieces of smooth hair. Watch tutorials online of how to get this right!

You can even use a mix of the different techniques together. Backcombing along with using a volumizing root booster will make your hair last all night!

You can’t have gorgeous hair without beautifying the rest of yourself, so look at some mani inspiration too. Good luck!

photo: flickr

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How to Make Shopping for a New Wardrobe Fast and Effective

Although shopping for a new wardrobe can be a lot of fun, it can also take up a lot of time. If you’re a busy person, then you’ll want clothes shopping to be fast and effective. Despite what other people may tell you, it can be done in a timely manner! Here are some tips I think you’ll find useful:


Make a List of Essentials

Don’t go shopping with absolutely no clue on what you’re going to buy. This is one of the most inefficient ways to shop. You could come home with anything and realise you already had something similar. Plus, just imagine the amount of options you have. Options only slow you down! Make a list of essentials by hunting through your winter garments and see what’s missing. This may include a cosy jumper, a new scarf, and boots. Try to be specific to make things even quicker, for example, a pair of brown boots.

Go Somewhere Small

The world is full of enormous shopping centres that are perfect for shopaholics, but if you want this shop to be quick then you need to go somewhere smaller. Too small and you might not find what you need, but too large and you’ll be spoilt for choice. As mentioned before, too much choice slows us down!

Try Your Favourite Stores First

You’re bound to find things you like in your favourite stores…they are your favourite for a reason. Try them first, and if you find what you need in there, great! If they don’t, you can begin looking in stores that you don’t favour as highly.

Don’t Look at Things You Don’t Need

Don’t even look at things you don’t need when shopping. Go straight to the place you’ll find items on your list and you’ll be in and out of the stores in no time.

Do It Online

Online shopping is one of the quickest, most effective ways to shop. You’ll save time and money on driving to the shops. You’ll even save time on looking around. Simply type in the web address and you can begin browsing straight away. Then, all you need to do is wait for your new clothes to arrive. This may take one day or up to five days, depending on the option you choose. To make it even quicker online, you can simply type ‘brown boots’, for example, into a search engine and see what comes up. More targeted search terms will help you to find items quickly and efficiently. You’ll instantly be able to look at and compare all kinds of items. You’re bound to find something that suits you.

Now you know how to make your shopping fast and effective, check out these budget makeup techniques to streamline your whole routine. Busy people still need to look fabulous, and with these tips, you can! Do you have any shopping tips you’d like to share with our readers? Feel free to leave a comment. Thanks for reading and happy shopping!

Photo Credit

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Buying Gifts for Your Girlfriend’s Birthday: The Rules

Is your girlfriend’s birthday coming up? If so, you’re probably tearing your hair out trying to think of gifts to buy for her. If you’re not, then you’re either oblivious as to how important this event is to her, or you know her very well. The following pointers are rules you should stick to so you can come up with great gift ideas:


Be Creative

Be creative with your gift ideas, if you can. This might take some brainstorming, and you may even need to speak to some of her friends/relatives to get more ideas. However, doing this is already a lot more thoughtful than buying her a clothes voucher for her favourite shop. While she’ll still appreciate the gift, it means more if you buy something you’ve put a lot of thought into. Think of her likes, dislikes, and what you thin
k she would appreciate. You should know her well enough! Thinking of buying her a watch? Use these tips to get it right!

Think Outside of the Box

Try to think outside of the box, especially if you think your girlfriend is a bit different. Most girls will appreciate new makeup or vouchers for makeup, but why not go one better and buy her a makeup lesson with the professionals, for example? She’ll learn new skills that she’ll enjoy using all the time. Things like this last forever, whereas makeup runs out or goes off. Sites like http://www.whositfor.co.uk/store/, for example, present plenty of unique gift buying opportunities.

Listen to Her

Your girlfriend may enjoy dropping hints about potential birthday gifts, and you may be oblivious. It’s in a woman’s nature to talk too much, just like it’s in a man’s nature to pretend to listen. In the run up to her birthday, start to listen to her properly. She may be dropping hints without even knowing it. You don’t have to buy her the exact things she’s talking about either, you could do your research and find something similar but that you think is better.

There are exceptions to this rule. For example, if she mentions that she could use a new hoover. Usually, this is not an invite to buy her it as a birthday gift, but a general observation. I can’t imagine any woman being thrilled with this gift on their birthday (unless they’re like Monica from Friends).

Make a Big Deal of It

Girls usually like it when you make a big deal of their birthdays. It only comes round once a year, so make sure you treat her as special as possible on the day.

Stick to a Budget

It can be very easy to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on your girlfriend once you get going. While this is fine if you have the cash, most of us don’t have a huge budget for gifts. Set yourself a budget, and stick to it so you don’t go bankrupt for her new handbag. She’ll appreciate anything you put thought into!

Have fun!

Photo Author: Flickr

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Choosing Your Wedding Dress

Finding the perfect wedding dress always feel like an ordeal for any bride to be. After all, there is a lot of pressure to look good. You don’t want to feel uncomfortable in any dress that you wear. For some brides, the pressure is too much. It can be a minefield choosing the most perfect dress. Bear in mind, there are no hard and fast rules of dressing to impress on your wedding day. In reality, you can wear whatever you want. You don’t have to listen to popular opinion. But, if you want some general guidelines on dressing for your body shape, you are in the right place.

Every bride deserves to feel nothing short of beautiful on their big day. You need to make sure that you are finding the perfect dress so that you feel as gorgeous as you should do.

Let this article take the stress out of wedding planning. Finding your dream dress will be a breeze.aRjp8kcNGDPzLRKh0moNo4tYvXU08qN1w_kb4zcxTOoZYWqvWhqwNak1zMPiFScJtS0JGLVxdh33XEcYcK4UElFHDrGrF96_pirDwPVQ4Vin4RagjqcwC2WDGCjlo-qBkQ=s320

With thanks to Allen for the gorgeous image

1. Don’t Go Wedding Dress Shopping Late in the Evening

Going wedding dress shopping in the morning is essential. Why? You will have your consultant’s full attention. The store will be less crowded, and you will be able to take your time when walking around the store. You don’t want to feel that you don’t have her full attention. You are probably going to spend hundreds on this dress. You want to feel special. Trying on bridal gowns in the morning, or early part of the day, means that you will get a better fit overall. After all, if you have spent the day snacking, dresses will not fit as well. Shopping in the morning allows you to have a better feel for your preferred bridal gowns.

2. Do Try Everything On!

You may have a very clear image of how your dress is going to look. But, when you try on that exact style, and it doesn’t quite look right, you are going to feel upset. Go into a bridal store with an open mind. You need to make sure that you are going to try on a wide range of dresses. Even if something looks ugly on the hanger, try it on. You never know, it may look simply stunning on you. You need to make sure that you are open-minded when trying on wedding dresses. Try on all of the styles within the store to make an informed decision.

3. Do Dress For Your Shape: Check Out Your Silhouette

While a slinky mermaid style wedding dress looks divine on some ladies, if you are a shorter, curvier woman this is not going to fit well. Think about your size, shape and the usual cut of your dresses. If you, usually, live in pencil skirts and tight tops, opting for a fit and flare style wedding gown may look bizarre. Consider your shape and size when trying on dresses. If you are a slender woman, opt for a slinky, carefully fitted dress that highlights your small waist. If you are a curvaceous woman, try on gowns that highlight your fantastic bosom. Thinking carefully about your own form will ensure that you find the most amazing dress. You will knock the groom’s socks off when you walk down the aisle.

4. Focus on the Top of Your Wedding Dress

There are many types of wedding dresses, but many brides focus on the detailing of the skirt and hem of the dress. In short, this is not the way to go. Why? Well, think about it rationally. You will have a lot of photos taken from the waist up. Ignoring the detailing on your bodice or top part of your dress will mean that your photos may look dull. While you may prefer an enormous, lace skirt with a plain top or bodice, this is not going to be reflected in your photos. Opting for lovely, simple detailing at the top of your wedding dress will ensure that your photos look amazing too. After all, once all of the wedding day is complete, you will be left with only the photos and your wedding ring. Choose wisely, so you have no regrets from your big day.

5. Don’t Choose a Fashionable Wedding Dress

Okay, there are a wide range of patterns and choices. But, the key to making sure that you look gorgeous on your day? Ditch the trends. Forgoing fashion is the only way to choose a wedding dress. While some of the wackier trends will only be around for a short time, your photos will last a lifetime. Ignoring fashionable trends for your wedding day is wedding dress rule 101. After all, you want your photos to stand the test of time. You do not want your wedding to look dated. You want to make sure that you are the epitome of classic, elegant bride. This should be reflected in your beautiful wedding dress.

6. Don’t Take All of the Family to Your Fittings

While it may be tempting to take the family on a grand day out to the local bridal store, don’t. They are going to tell you that you look stunning in everything that you wear. What is more, the more people who are shouting things at you, the more stressed you will feel. Take one or two people maximum. My advice would be to take your mum and your best friend. You need to make sure that you only take people who are brutally honest with you. You want an honest opinion of how you look. You don’t want people telling you that you look wonderful when you don’t. It’s that simple.

7. Do Consider Your Accessories

Your accessories should serve to compliment your gown. Do bear in mind that you will need to accessorise your gown with a whole host of things? Veils, tiaras, headbands and necklaces should all serve to compliment your dress. Make sure that you have a gown that can easily be accessorised. You also need to make sure that you do not accessorise on a whim. Think long and hard about your accessory choices. They can be costly, so do not buy them on an impulse.

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A Review of 4 Popular Budget Beauty Techniques

Being beautiful can be an expensive business. Salon treatments, expensive haircuts and designer clothes don’t come cheaply. So, while we might strut around looking the part, it’s hard to enjoy it when we’re too busy worrying about our bank balance. So, to help you save some precious pennies where you can, we’ve tried and tested four of the most popular budget beauty techniques. So you can decide for yourself if they match up to the make-up and cosmetics that can be bought at your local drug store.

1. Lemon Juice Lip Treatment

Every woman dreams of having soft, plump and pink lips, and many go to great lengths in order to achieve that look. But do you have to spend a fortune on branded products in order to do it? Well, apparently if you massage lemon juice into your lips, it helps to bleach them and gives them the desired pink and healthy color. We tried this technique, and whilst it made our lips tingle, it didn’t really have much of an effect. So, we’re going to stick with our Rimmel lipstick, thank you very much.


Photo Credit: Flickr

2. Baking Soda

Baking soda is something that many of us have sat idle in our kitchen cupboards, but the truth is that it can be used for so much more than just baking. Baking soda can be used in place of regular toothpaste to help give you that perfect ‘Hollywood smile’. You can also use it to wash your hair to give it a healthy glow and natural shine. Just sprinkle a little onto the roots of your hair and tousle it gently to create a fresh and up-to-date look.

3. Home Spa Treatment

A day spent in a spa is most women’s idea of utter bliss. But did you know that you can recreate the same effect at home, only without the hefty price tag? We all know how healthy our skin looks after a session in the steam room. To achieve the same feeling, spend 15 minutes in a hot shower, so that plenty of steam fills up the bathroom. Then before jumping out and drying off, expose your body to cold water for about 20 seconds. Repeat the process about two or three times. It’s not quite as relaxing as going to a spa, but the effect is pretty amazing. It helps to unblock your pores, and if you get a slight sweat on, it’ll also help to detoxify your system.


Photo Credit: Flickr

4. Cucumber Eye Revitalizer

Most of us have seen our moms or nanas with a couple of slices of cucumber over each eye at some point, or another. The idea is that they help to revitalize, refresh and keep the skin around the eyes looking young. But the question is, do they actually work? We found that after a late night, they were very effective at helping to reduce puffiness and the appearance of dark circles. They also make a good moisturizer, but not quite good enough for us to replace our existing store-bought lotion.


Photo Credit: Flickr

If you’ve got any more budget beauty techniques that you’d like to share, we’d love to hear from you. Please leave a comment in the box below!

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How to Decide Which Watch to Buy Next

If you’re building up a collection of watches, it can be difficult to decide which watch to buy next. Many people love owning multiple timepieces; one for casual wear, one for going out, one for business – you name it, there’s a watch suited to the occasion! But just how are you supposed to choose which watch to buy next when there’s so much choice out there? Read on for help making this tough decision:


Image Author: Flickr

Consider the Occasion

The first thing to do when buying a new watch is to consider the occasion. Are you buying this watch for any particular reason? Is it a party? A posh meal? A business meeting? This should help you to narrow down your choices and separate the casual/trendy watches from the more professional pieces. If it’s not for any particular occasion, skip this step.

Look at Your Current Collection

Take a long hard look at your current watch collection. What is it missing? Is there something you feel you need? Perhaps you’ve got plenty of business watches but you’d like a more casual piece for everyday wear. Or maybe you fancy a digital watch for a change. Think of the features your current watches have and whether there’s anything missing. You may want one that’s completely different to anything you currently own. You might want a different shape, colour, pattern – try to be diverse with your choices, otherwise there’s no point in owning multiple pieces!

Consider the Theme

Instead of buying a diverse watch so you have a variety to choose from, you could keep a running theme with your watch collection. However, it may seem nonsensical to have a bunch of watches that aren’t too different from one another. For example, you may solely want to own black watches. You could try a Detroit watch company to get different ideas.

Research the Brands

If you’ve found a couple of brands you like, research them. I always enjoy finding out a bit about the brands I’m buying into. Their history might seal the deal for you when you realise that they’re a family run company who specialises in making leather watches, for example. You’ll also find out a bit about their company values and how they grew to be what they are today.

Read Reviews

If you have a particular watch model in mind, read reviews online to make sure that it’s all it’s cracked up to be.

Ask for a Second Opinion

A second opinion can be a great help when hunting for your next watch. Somebody you trust may be able to tell you what watch they think suits you most. You don’t have to agree with them, but at least if you don’t agree with them, you realise which watch you really want!

Consider Your Budget

Of course you should always have a budget when watch shopping. It’s far too easy to spend more than you wanted, so give yourself a budget and stick to it.

I hope I helped you to narrow down your options!

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Bloggers Wanted for Essio Shower Giveaway

Essio Shower Blogger Giveaway

ESSIO is the greatest thing to happen to showers since running water itself. It clips onto any shower and diffuses 100% organic essential oils into the shower water at the perfect rate, rejuvenating the mind and body.


Want to Try It? Sign Up Here

We are looking for awesome bloggers to review our product for our upcoming October giveaway. Simply click the button below to request your kit. The first 100 bloggers to sign up and also promote this giveaway announcement on their blog will be sent a free sample!
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The Bouqs Review

I love how getting flowers for someone is more than just a gift. Whether it’s a holiday, a special occasion or even just because getting someone flowers is a way to show you care. It is hard to find good flowers online that do not arrive wilted or last more than a few days. I was very excited to review a Bouquet from The Bouqs.

My favorite flower is a Stargazer Lily. I love how brightly colored they are and how they make the whole house smell when they bloom. So of course I chose The Bouqs “Good Karma” bouquet. I could not wait until it arrived.


I was a little surprised that it was packaged in such a small box. It took a couple minutes to figure out how to get the flowers out without hurting them, but I learned that if you cut the ties from the outside of the box first they will come out a lot easier. A couple of the flowers had started blooming while in transit and looked a little off color which worried me.

I put them in a vase as fast as I could and added the flower food included with the flowers. Within an hour the color of the flowers had returned to a normal shade and had started blooming. I couldn’t believe how fast they had bloomed! Within a day half of the flowers were fully bloomed and gorgeous! They smelled absolutely amazing and you could tell they were in the house.


After a while I noticed that the other half of the flowers had still not bloomed even though the ones that had were starting to wilt. I clipped the wilting flowers off the bouquet and within a day the rest had started blooming. I was very impressed because I had a very pretty bouquet for a little over 3 weeks before they all wilted which is way longer than any other flowers I have had.

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When you get flowers from The Bouqs you know your flowers are going to last because they are shipped directly from the farm instead of a warehouse. You also skip the middle man if you choose them instead of the florist. My flowers lasted a long time and were beautiful the whole time!

Right now you can get 15% off by clicking any of the links on this page. So be sure to check out their website here and show someone you care!

**Disclaimer** Star Focal received samples of the above product in order to facilitate a review. However, we were in no way paid, or obligated to give a positive review, or a review at all for this company. If you would like to read my full disclaimer for reviews you can find it here .

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