New segment alert! I absolutely love reading but too lazy to dedicate review posts for every single book I read. Also, maybe because I’m jaded from school book reports but for the life of me, I also can’t write reviews on books, lol. I figured, a monthly round up is the way to go with a few sentences regarding the book!
Rating: 4/5. I’ve been into witchcraft lately and heard about this comic book. Intrigued, I found myself a copy and gave it a read. The illustrations are really cool and I love how Greg has incorporated witchcraft into a modern day. It’s a great story line and very informative for baby witches.
Rating: 3/5. I loved The Umbrella Academy on Netflix and wanted to dive more into it. For an entire volume, I felt the story line was moving way too fast and the characters lacked depth. There were a lot of similarities between the comic book and the TV series but overall, I didn’t enjoy the comics as much as I enjoyed the TV adaptation. I suppose I enjoy getting to know my characters a bit more…
Rating: 3/5. This is a Goosebumps classic! I have the entire Goosebumps series and one night felt like reading a Goosebumps book. Yes, they’re written for kids so I tried not to overthink the entire story. The worms were creepy and reading it at night did give me a few chills as R.L. Stine does a great description throughout the book. Otherwise, if you’re a bit older, the narrative gets a bit cheesy, lol.
Rating: 2/5. I’ve read a lot of North Korean defectors memoirs and unfortunately, this one falls short. I understand the reality and horror of Eunsun Kim and her family, but unfortunately, I found it hard to connect and truly see and experience what she was going through. It felt as though she was just telling short stories that eventually led her up to where she is now in life. There was no depth to her characters – seriously, what about her sister’s background? She didn’t paint a picture of what North Korea was like, and instead, painted a picture of her years in China. This is a true story so I won’t be too harsh but there are other memoirs to read if you’re ever interested in North Korea.
Hope you guys enjoyed the first installment of monthly reads! It feels so good to get these reviews off my chest, lol.
Have you read any of these books? Got one in mind I should try? Let me know! And, if we’re not friends on Goodreads yet… what are you waiting for?
ToSave is an up-and-coming online retailer specializing in pretty much everything – clothes, accessories, beauty products, electronics, household items, cars accessories, etc. – at a ridiculously low price.
As someone that adores (online) shopping and loves a good discount, I couldn’t help but check out ToSave and see what their quality was like and what they had in stock. For me, fashion isn’t a big deal in my life but I still prefer getting quality goods at an affordable price, especially when I’m trying to pay off student loans and travel in the near future.
So, I grabbed a nice grey sweater, in time for the chilly Vancouver weather, and an everyday bag.
Okay, let me just start off by saying I love this sweater the moment I received it in the mail. I know that sounds extreme to say because c’mon… love? But seriously.
It arrived just in time for the cold weather to kick in. I tossed it the wash and wore it the next day. Much to my surprise, the sweater is extremely comfy and did not itch one bit. It was has a pleasant weave/braid design in the front and was true to its size. To this day, this sweater is still one of few items I wear consistently on a weekly basis.
However, given the price, you must know that it’s not 100% wool blend because otherwise, it’ll shrink in the wash. I tossed it in the washer and dryer and it didn’t shrink at all. Unfortunately, I’m not too sure what the mix of materials is but regardless, it’s easy to care for and still comfy after many washes. Since it is a mix of materials, the back of my sweater isn’t pure grey – it has bits of black scattered across the back but it’s not extremely noticeable until you examine it close up. When I wear it, it blends right in.
But, despite this (and better on the back than the front of the sweater), I still adore this item! If you’re in need of a new sweater that’s comfy, easy on the eyes and easy to care for, ToSave definitely has some good stock!
The next item I chose from ToSave is a nice everyday beige purse. I’ve been in the market for a new bag for a bit but hasn’t actively pursued anything because of the cost. I hated the idea of spending $30-50 on a bag and have it sit in the closet for some time after getting tired of using a bag (I switch from bags to backpacks throughout the year).
When I saw this bag on their site, I knew I wanted it. It was basic, trendy, unique and the ideal size for what I want in a bag. The bag was quite roomy inside with low pockets on the outside. There were two straps – a multicolour thick strap and a slightly longer, black strap. Top it off, it closed with a magnetic button. When it arrived, it was a slight overall disappointment with this bag.
To start off, it advertises as PU leather which is fine by me. I thought the material was fine, for the price that is, but it was incredibly thin. I felt extremely nervous at the thought of stuffing a lot of things into the bag thinking it may rip out of nowhere.
The multicolour strap was such a unique feature of this bag, I couldn’t help but love it. It was big, bright and of decent quality – you can definitely feel confident wearing the bag without the strap digging in your shoulders or snapping. However, the black strap was very cheap, you can tell by the look and feel of it. I definitely wouldn’t trust carrying my bag with such a flimsy strap.
Another disappointing factor was the quality of the strap buckles. If the straps won’t give way first, then these buckles definitely will. I couldn’t believe these flimsy things is what holding the bag together. I understand that it’s a $10 bag so I shouldn’t be too surprised by the build quality.
Lastly, the bag also came with a little pouch. I think this is a coin purse? I wasn’t too sure because the opening was so small and thin, you couldn’t fit anything else but small coins in there… I struggled to even fit my fingers in there. This small pouch is probably the worst of the bunch – I felt that it was made from leftover materials and didn’t give much post-care to it as the zipper was sticky and threads were sticking out.
All in all, this bag looks fancy but built poorly in my opinion. I’m not into brand names so I’m not sure if this is an “original” design or a knockoff of a designer brand. It’s not to say that you can’t wear it in public, I’d still continue using it, but I think I’ll take a bit more caution in what I put in this bag. If it was damaged or lost, it’s not the end of the world.
Final thoughts on ToSave? It’s a great website to buy your clothes and accessories without breaking the bank. However, be wary of the quality – it’s sometimes a hit or miss, and don’t get too overly excited when they arrive. Don’t know what to get off of these cheap online retailers? Here are six items you should consider buying online to save some money!
Also, a lot of these products ship from China. I ordered late November, and it didn’t arrive until early January. Granted, the post office was closed for the holidays and was extremely busy but it took just a little over a month to deliver. If you’re patient, this website can be a great resource for shopping.
I would also say, don’t trust the pictures too much, as well. It’s a business – all these pictures are going to look great and high quality. I was fooled by the model and stock pictures of the bag, and sadly, the quality wasn’t as great as what they portrayed it to be. The products on the site are so cheap, you can’t even get hung up if expectations don’t meet!
Let me know if you’ve tried ToSave! What did you like or not like about it?
*Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by ToSave. ToSave has sent me these two products as compensation for a review. However, this does not affect my opinions or bias towards this brand whatsoever. I promise my readers my opinions and thoughts on these products remains honest and unbias. Interested in working with me? Get in contact with me here!
As you may or may not know, 2017 has been a “bad” year in terms of my fitness; I left my job at the gym earlier last year and got an office job which has drastically changed my lifestyle from active to semi-active and putting on a few pounds. I couldn’t change my lifestyle from having the convenience of the gym right after I get work to having to make the effort and find the motivation to actually go down to the gym.
A few years ago, I heard of ClassPass for a bit and I recalled checking them out but quickly exited the site because there weren’t many studios available on the service. I haven’t thought about ClassPass since a few months ago when I saw an Instagram ad for ClassPass and I was drawn in by their wonderful Instagram account.
So, what is ClassPass? In short, ClassPass is essentially an “all-in-one” gym membership to your cities hottest studios and gyms. ClassPass acts as a gym membership to any gyms and studios that are partnered with ClassPass – yes, this includes worldwide locations where ClassPass operates – say goodbye to vacation weight!
I originally signed up for the $19 for two weeks promo and took my first Barre class shortly after. After raving about how awesome this service can potentially be, I got Dan to sign up for the promo as well, and together we took another Barre class and a kickboxing class. I ended up enjoying the service so much, I chose subscribed to their $55/month plan which is slightly more expensive than traditional gym memberships around town, but significantly cheaper than niche studios.
I absolutely love ClassPass because it benefitted me in so many ways. I’m more motivated to work out because I see all these fun classes available to me at the tip of my fingertips and no longer dread my boring weights routine. ClassPass has definitely helped shaped my fitness routine, thus getting me out the door and much more active than I previously was when I only had a gym membership. It also helped that I’m also cheap enough to not pay the $15 cancellation fee which “forces” me to commit to the class.
It’s also rad that ClassPass offers “gym time” which is exactly what it sounds like – gym time. When I miss my weights and want a break from classes, I’m free to walk into Steve Nash without paying for their ridiculous drop in fees or get a membership there.
However, it’s not to say that ClassPass is perfect. Yes, it helped me tremendously in getting active again and getting back into a fitness routine, but the policies tire you out.
After my initial hype and love for ClassPass died down, I started to see some flaws. The cancellation policy was a hit or miss – it’d help me stay committed to the class and keeping me fit, but it also felt like I was being “forced” to attend class or otherwise, I’d be penalized. There were nights when I didn’t want to do class anymore so I was stuck in the dilemma of forgoing $15 because it was a late cancellation (need to cancel 12 hours before class started) or stick it out and go attend class? I wish that ClassPass would offer a more realistic time frame to cancel with penalties – like serious, life happens within 12 hours! I wish they offered anywhere between 6 to 8 hours cancellation time frame instead of 12.
To prevent users from cheating those expensive niche studios, ClassPass obviously puts a limit on how many times you can visit a studio per month. After visiting my favourite barre studio twice already, I either had to use more credits to take a class or my ClassPass plan or buy a membership at that barre studio (which I ended up doing). So, I ventured off to different barre studios throughout town because out of all the classes I’ve done, I enjoyed Barre the most.
I feel I should also warn you about their cancellation process. Dan had a horrible experience cancelling his trial pass and ended up paying for another month subscription he didn’t want. To cancel the trial, you need at least three days notice and you must email or call in – there’s no self-cancel button on their app or website (seriously, what’s up with that? It’s 2018!). That being said, for anyone who is renewing after the trial, watch out for which plan you choose because ClassPass will automatically select their highest plan as the default renewal plan.
However, despite the strict policies, I love ClassPass for what it is. It’s a great fun way to stay active and push yourself out of your comfort zone and try a new activity! I remember I used to be afraid of classes because I thought everyone would laugh at me because I didn’t know what I was doing but all the classes I’ve attended were fantastic! The instructors were helpful and welcoming, I was pushed beyond my limits, and I met amazing people on ClassPass doing the class for the first time. The idea of being the newest one in class went away.
ClassPass is for someone who wants it all… a little bit of gym and a few classes. It’s for someone that’s has a somewhat regular routine unless you want to pay $15 for everytime life throws something at you. It’s for those who want to try something new on a regular basis. It’s for those who need help getting into an active routine and those who enjoy meeting new people.
TIP: If you’re taking a class with a friend, book the class at least 48 hours in advance in case there’s only one spot left that you or your friend booked. This allows you to cancel the reservation without any penalties and find another class that has the available spots for you and your friend(s). This happened to Dan and I once when he took the last spot in a Barre class but was too late to cancel so we went anyways and I paid the drop in fee at that studio.
I wouldn’t recommend ClassPass if your life doesn’t consist of some sort of regular routine, and someone that enjoys one or two fitness activities. Trust me, you’ll hit your monthly limitation if you’re thinking of using ClassPass as a “cheaper” alternative to a studio.Have you given ClassPass a shot yet? Let me know!
*This post was not sponsored by ClassPass; Coffee with Claire or myself is not affiliated with ClassPass in any way. My ClassPass subscription is paid by myself and all opinions here are unbiased. ClassPass has no influence over this post.
If you don’t know what AliExpress is, it’s about the Asian equivalent of eBay but with cheaper goods and easier to find and navigate around.
I used to love eBay but if I’m being honest, I don’t frequent that site much anymore unless I’m looking for specific items because I found it almost near impossible to find what I’m looking for and generally the prices are a bit more higher than AliExpress.
Anyways, over the past two months (this haul is long overdue), I went a little shopping spree on AliExpress and I’d show you what I got!
PS: I am frugal.
PPS: This post is not sponsored by AliExpress! All contents were purchased by me.
In no particular order:
An Adidas gym bag for $10 CAD! Since starting my new job that requires me to pack my laptop and lunch everyday, my backpack ran out of room for my gym gear so I purchased a small gym bag.
A no-name 8mm fisheye lens for my Olympus for about $80 CAD. It does the trick for those looking to have a fun lens without breaking the bank. If you’re interested, all my New Zealand vlogs were shot with this lens and if you head over to my Flickr, you can see HD photo samples of this lens.
A $3 tank top. The detailing was nice. It’s very lightweight and best suited for the gym.
A $1 blush. It’s very pigmented and pink. If you know, you know I’m not very big on make up so I can’t justify forking over more than $10 on make up. Yup, let’s hear it… #cheapass
A pack of Victoria’s Secret seamless underwear for $7. I was in need of seamless underwear because I hate having panties line show up when I wear my workout gears and leggings. At my local store, a pair of seamless underwear was already $6-10 so when I found these Victoria’s Secrets, I figured I’d try them out.
It’s so comfy and yes, super seamless 😛
Stay tune for a What’s in my Bags vlog featuring this bag! I got this for $29! It’s officially my everyday bag.
$4 for a pack of coloured eyeliners. I love putting colour on my eyes but I don’t believe in paying for $4 for one pencil – as you know, that adds up when you want the rainbow. These eyeliners goes on smoothly and lasts for the day!
$5 Hello Kitty shirt 🙂
$3 phone case. The sequins move around when you shake it 😛
$1 liquid eyeliner. And oh my god, it was easily my most favourite eyeliner I’ve ever used! I’m definitely stocking up on these. They’re even better than ELF (and cheaper!).
Ignore the trash back in the background – I was cleaning out my closet. I got these two dresses for $7 each! I wore the blue one for an interview and the floral one for my headshots.
Lastly, this is just a wristband for my camera – about $6. I hate the neck straps on my camera and never use it so I decided to switch it up and carry my camera via a wrist strap instead.
I absolutely love shopping on AliExpress over eBay. And, like eBay, they have a great consumers protection program as well 🙂
Let me know if you shop on AliExpress or was hesitant using this site.
*This post is not sponsored by AliExpress nor is it affiliated with. All items mentioned on this post was purchased with my own money. All opinions are mine.
Confession: I own about… 5 pair of glasses. Yes, you read that right: 5 pairs.
I’m a huge believer that glasses can dress up an outfit, and it doesn’t hurt to have a few extra pairs laying around as a back up pair. As someone that tends to get bored easily, I love having different coloured glasses to swap around when I feel the need to change things up.
I also believe that as fun as it is to own multiple pairs of glasses in different colours, one cannot skip out on a basic pair of black glasses. They’re fun, formal, casual, sexy, everything.
So… how does one own 5 pairs of glasses without breaking the bank?
I shop online and look for glasses frames that are affordable and cheap. When I mean affordable, I definitely mean affordable – I haven’t paid more than $100 for a pair of glasses since I lost my first pair!
So, I snagged a pair of casual black frames from GlassesShop. They offer cheap glasses with a wide range of selections available.
Upon receiving the package, I was welcome with one of the cutest glasses case. It’s so slim, I wish every case was made like this!
When I first tried it on, I felt the sunglasses almost crooked but I think it was just me because eventually the glasses felt comfortable on my face. It’s very light weight!
I wear prescription glasses so it’s important that the lenses I have on my glasses are correct and nice. GlasseShop got my prescription correct and basic lens for me. As you can see, the lens reflect off surfaces very easily which is something I’m not entirely a fan of but for the price what can you do? These lens are already anti-reflective but the notable reflections are still there.
One thing that took me by surprise was how flexible the hinges were! The arms swung open with a flick.
I’m not really a materialistic person and care for name brands but I wish GlassesShop would have printed the frame model’s name rather than gibberish that don’t make sense to consumers. I mean, it’s not the greatest fault, but compared to other glasses shop, it’s pleasant on the eyes to see a model rather than numbers.
Overall, my experience with GlassesShop was very pleasant. I got a nice black frame without breaking the bank! If you’re in town for a new pair, give GlassesShop a try! GlassesShop also offers prescription sunglasses for those upcoming sunny months.
GlassesShop is offering all readers a 50% off on eyeglasses and sunglasses with free lens (excluding sale frames)! Enter GSHOT50 upon checking out.
*Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by GlassesShop, however, all opinions are 100% mine.
One of the biggest things I hate about winter is the cold harsh environment. Canada is known to be brutally cold but luckily I’m located on the West Coast which proves to have warmer winters (what is snow that you talk about?). However, despite having a warmer winter than the rest of Canada, Vancouver sometimes still gives me dry skin from time to time.
Lately, I’ve incorporated the L’Oreal Hydra-Total 5 Ultra Fresh Ritual into my everyday life. Previously, my skincare routine was great but I must admit, it did leave me skin slightly drier in the winter time (because I often forget to moisturize).
I use the gel cleanser every night to get rid of dirt and my make up. This little thing takes off my waterproof mascara and eyeliner in one quick wash! I prefer to use it at night because I feel my face is much cleaner after a long day rather than using a cleanser in the morning.
Following the cleanser, I use the toner to tighten my pores up. I have an oily T-Zone and this is wonderful. The current toner I use has a very strong scent and burns my skin (if I have any cuts). It’s extremely power and makes me eyes water when I use the toner. The L’Oreal toner smells light and to my delight, doesn’t sting at all!
Lastly, I use a bit of moisturizer before going to bed and in the morning. It’s very light weight moisturize and smells great. Unfortunately, I don’t find the moisturizing to last all day – my other daily moisturize works much better.
Overall, the L’Oreal Hydra-Total 5 Ultra Fresh is a great way to keep skin hydrated and moisturized in the winter. Compared to my other cleanser and toner, L’Oreal works wonder. However, I might skin out on the moisturize and stick to my current one instead.
*All products reviewed in this post was provided from Influenster. Opinions stated on this review are 100% from my own observation and usage.
I think everyone can agree that having an impaired eyesight can add up with purchases of contacts or glasses. I use both contacts and glasses and there are times when I look at glasses and think, geezus, where would I ever find $600 to fork out for just one pair of glasses? And God forbid I break those!
In comes Zenni Opticals, an online glasses store. Zenni Optical offers affordable eyewear for kids, women and men, and has frames starting as low as $6.95!
I decided to order the Blue Acetate-Rim Frame #445816 because I wanted a pair of blue glasses and the frame was only $30. The basic lens were free but I also ended up paying about $5 for standard anti-reflecting coating and shipping to Canada ($10).
Zenni Optical took 1.5 weeks or so to produce the glasses and a few days to arrive to my doorstep. In all, it took about two weeks for me to receive these pair of glasses.
To be honest, I find it hard to believe these frames were only $30! The quality of the frames are up to par and I’ve thrown them into my bag without a protective case and it still survived at the end of the day. In addition, because I opted for the basic free lens, I was surprised at how strong they are – in my bag filled with keys, sharp books, etc. I’m surprised the lens aren’t damaged or scratched.
Now, I’m not sure if it’s the pair of glasses I chose, but the downside of an online store is obviously the lack of physical testing. Zenni Optical allows you to upload a photo to see roughly how you would look with the pair. When I wore these pair of glasses, there was no support around the bridge area so the glasses would always slide down my nose and it’s extremely frustrating… especially in the summer time! I ended up getting it fixed in person in a local optical store but it still didn’t fix the problem.
The glasses came with a protective case and a cleaning cloth.
All in all, Zenni Optical provides quality frames in a cheap price. They have great stock of frames available in wide ranges of colours and styles. They took two weeks to complete my order and ship to Canada. I haven’t had any problems with the ordering or billing so I haven’t touched based with their customer service but their policies and customer service seems to be reasonable.
Long gone are my days forking out hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a pair of glasses. Whenever I’m in the mood to switch up my frames, Zenni Optical is one the first places I check for frames.
For anyone skeptical about the quality of online frames because of their prices, definitely give Zenni Optical a try! I’m all about being frugal without compromising styles and quality so Zenni Optical meets me halfway.
*Disclaimer: This post was not sponsored by Zenni Optical. I am in no way affiliated with the company nor does this blog represents Zenni. Product(s) shown here were purchased with my own money.