Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Food Review: Lilly's Hummus

Four flavors of Lilly's Hummus - Roasted Garlic, Roasted
Jalapeno, Smoked Tomato and Basil, Kalamata Olive with
some pita bread (devoured after this photo!)

The good folks over at the Oregon-based Lilly's Hummus contacted me about reviewing some of their hummus and I gleefully accepted (I am a hummus addict)...little did I know that these generous folks would be sending me full tubs of seven varieties of their lip-smackin' hummus!

I received the hummus about a week ago and have been snacking on all the flavors for the past week. If this proves anything, it's that I don't get sick of hummus, like, ever!! I received all their flavors (except the Cracked Black Pepper), which are:

  • Plain (Original)
  • Smoked Tomato and Basil
  • Roasted Garlic
  • Roasted Jalapeno
  • Kalamata Olive
  • Roasted Red Pepper
  • Black Bean Hummus

Lilly's Hummus uses fresh, organic, and locally-sourced ingredients to make their delectable hummus. Their hummus has a rustic, homemade quality that you just don't get with mass-produced hummus. Lilly's has more texture and natural flavor than regular store-bought hummus and the quality of ingredients really shines through!

I enjoyed all their flavors, but I did have a few favorites. I fell head-over-heels in love with their Smoked Tomato and Basil Hummus! The smoky tomato flavor combined with the crisp taste of basil had me coming back for more...and more. In fact, I'm pretty sure that I inhaled half the tub before forcing myself to stop!

I also loved the Roasted Garlic, Roasted Jalapeno and Kalamata Olive flavors. I liked that the flavors never felt overpowering or processed, instead they tasted subtle and natural. Lilly's never uses fillers, imitation flavors or hydrogenated oils, and I think that really shows in the final product!

Lilly's Hummus cares about their product and consumers - which is evident from the final, delicious product! I also like that this company uses locally-sourced and organic ingredients whenever possible, doesn't use preservatives or weird ingredients in their hummus, and is an eco-friendly company, recycling and composting at their facility whenever possible.

I would definitely buy Lilly's Hummus and wholeheartedly recommend it! Next time I am out I plan on seeing if my local health food store, Mother's Market, has any in stock.

Lilly's Hummus is sold at select natural/health food stores...for locations of those in your area and for more info on Lilly's, check their website!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Beauty Review: 100% Pure Eucalyptus Seafoam Facial Cleanser

My lovely friend introduced me to 100% Pure Cosmetics, a (mostly) vegan* (see note below) line of beauty products made from the purest ingredients. 100% Pure products do not contain harsh detergents, synthetic chemicals, artificial fragrances, chemical preservatives, toxins or animal products (except some products contain honey...which I discovered after writing this review; more on this below). Of course I immediately wanted to try all their products, but the Eucalyptus Seafoam Facial Cleanser caught my eye since it is made for oily skin (which unfortunately I have).

I was lucky enough to receive it for my birthday and just couldn't wait to try it. I mean, just take a look at the plant-based ingredient list:

Organic Seaweeds (Kelp, Sea Lettuce, Spirulina), Green Tea (Organic), French Green Sea Clay, Coco Betaine (gentle coconut cleanser), Vitamin C (Ascorbyl Palmitate), Vitamin E (Di Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate), Sea Buckthorn Berry Oil, Rosa Canina (Rose Hip) Seed Oil, Extracts of, Pomegranate (Organic), Grapefruit Seed (Organic), Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract (Organic), Essential Oil of Organic Tea Tree, Organic Eucalyptus and Organic Peppermint, Extracts of Cinnamon, Thyme, Goldenseal and Oregano

Sounds delightful, does it not?! I tried it for the first time after a long, hard day and immediately found its pepperminty eucalyptus scent invigorating and uplifting. My face tingled (in a good way) when I massaged it into my skin, as if my very skin cells were perking up! After rinsing I noticed it took off all my makeup no problem! My skin felt smooth, soft, refreshed and clean! It really felt like it cleared my pores out and that they could “breathe”.

It also doesn't dry out my skin like most cleansers made for oily skin, but instead leaves it feeling nourished. I didn't even need to put on any moisturizer after washing my face with this cleanser!

I will mention that if you get it near your eyes that they will tingle…it doesn't sting like soap but it is an odd feeling, so I recommend washing your eye makeup off first before using the 100% Pure Eucalyptus Seafoam cleanser.

I love 100% Pure’s philosophy on natural ingredients, commitment to being (mostly) vegan and cruelty-free and using quality ingredients to create wonderful products such as their Eucalyptus Seafoam Facial Cleanser.

Based on how much I love this product I can’t wait to try other 100% Pure items!

*A word of warning: after initially writing this review I discovered that though their products are listed as being "vegan", be aware that some products contain honey. So far I found beeswax in some of their lip products, but it could also pop up in other products. 

The company says they use "cruelty-free" honey, which is a bunch of BS in my opinion. This is pretty shady to call yourself "vegan" but include honey in your products! It makes me NOT want to try any other products from 100% Pure.

Please make sure to check the ingredient lists before purchasing any products! 

Monday, January 28, 2013

Vegan Cuts January 2013 Box Review

January 2013 Vegan Cuts Box

I love monthly subscription boxes! I tried the Lollihop snack box (review) until they shut down, and for the past year I've been receiving Conscious Box. I had a few problem with Conscious Box, like receiving the wrong box (I got their "classic" box instead of their vegan box), missing items in my boxes, and even receiving items in their "vegan" box that weren't vegan. Their customer service was quick to address my concerns, but nonetheless when my subscription was up I opted to cancel and try something new!

I opted for Vegan Cuts because I already adore their vegan coupon service, the price seemed fair and with them I knew all products would be 100% vegan. I signed up and received my first box towards the end of January.

From other people's photos I've seen, not all boxes are the same and there is quite some variety to what products come in your monthly box. Below is a list of what I received in my January 2013 Vegan Cuts Box:

  • Beanfields Pico de Gallo chips
  • Beanfields Nacho chips
  • Surf Sweets Sour Berry Bears
  • PUR Wintergreen Gum
  • Nutcase Crunch
  • Berry Plus Laundry Soap
  • Cuppow lid for extra-wide Mason jars
  • Simply Straws clear glass straw
  • Kelapo Virgin Coconut Oil 
  • Organic Freekeh Roasted Green Wheat

I LOVE Beanfields chips, so I was very excited to try these flavors, which I've never had before! I also had never tried Surf Sweets, PUR gum or Freekeh wheat, so I was very pleased to receive these high-quality items. I love Cuppow lids and Simply Straws and glad to add these to my collection. I had previously received Nutcase Crunch, Berry Plus Laundry Soap and Kelapo Coconut Oil in a Conscious Box, so I knew these were good items as well!

I have to be honest - at first I wasn't too impressed with the Vegan Cuts box, especially looking at the different items in other people's boxes...however, after giving it some thought I've changed my opinion and am quite content with the items contained in the January box. 

If you are looking for a box that allows you to try a variety of vegan products and is a good value, I definitely encourage you to check out Vegan Cuts!

If interested in signing up for a Vegan Cuts box, please use my referral link by clicking HERE!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

I'm Back with Vacation Photos!

Hi boils and ghouls! I know, I know...long time no post. So much stuff to catch up on! I apologize for my absence...I was on vacation the first week of January (during which I had my birthday...yay!), but when I got back home I came down with the death flu that's going around and was pretty much out of commission for a week and a half. Then I had my belated birthday party to host and lots of work at my jobby-job to catch up on...leaving not much time for blogging!

I'm back now, and will definitely be posting more often in the coming weeks!

For my first post of the new year, I wanted to share some photos with you of my trip up to Northern California. Mister Spooky and I headed up there to visit my family and have a second Christmas. We headed up the 101 Highway early, early one rainy morning and got up to Napa County early afternoon. During our week stay we ate awesome food, hung out with my family, went on hikes, visited tons of old cemeteries and even did a day trip out to Bodega Bay.

Here are a few pics of the trip (if you follow me on Instagram - thespookyvegan - many of these may look familiar)!

Sunrise on the road

The beautiful tree (and presents) at my parent's house! They 
postponed Christmas so we could spend it together :)

 Cutest owl gift tag / wrapping paper from my sister the Trick or Treat book!

Some more neat books I picked up on the trip.

 Creepy angel in a mausoleum - Tulocay Cemetery, Napa, CA

 Sunset in the cemetery - Tulocay Cemetery, Napa, CA

Gorgeous monument at Tulocay Cemetery in Napa, CA 

Tulocay Cemetery, Napa, CA

Annnnnnd this is how I spent NYE...wearing my old dinosaur
costume from when I was a kid! RAWR!

 We went to the Petrified Forest near Calistoga, CA (I had lived in the 
area for years and had never been) and it was pretty cool!

This area had been excavated to uncover the massive petrified tree
to the left in the photo.

Awesome found graffiti at the Petrified Forest - Go Vegan!

 1800s Pioneer Cemetery at Bothe-Napa Valley State Park

 1800s Pioneer Cemetery at Bothe-Napa Valley State Park

On the trail at Bothe-Napa Valley State Park

In honor of my birthday, I share with you this pic of me on my 2nd bday :)

 Finally made it to Ike's Place (Santa Rosa location)! Got their 
Vegan Ugly Owl sammie and OMG it was soooooooo delicious!

 Also tried this at Ike' was like drinking a peppermint stick! NOM!

Old abandoned Haunted House (or what's left of it) - somewhere
on the road to Bodega Bay

Old cemetery we found on the way to Bodega Bay

Had an amazing four-course fancy dinner at Jole in Calistoga, CA.
Jole isn't a vegan restaurant, but their chef created a custom vegan
four-course menu for me! It was so delicious!

 The view from this place was unreal! I could see all of the valley!
Spring Mountain Road, St. Helena, CA

 Old Pioneer Cemetery in Calistoga, CA 
I had never been to this cemetery, so I was excited I finally went! 
Lots of old, old tombstones that you could barely read anymore.

 Oh hi there! Me in the Old Pioneer Cemetery in Calistoga, CA

 Still my favorite grave...."Darling" in St. Helena Cemetery - 
St. Helena, CA

It was a much needed getaway for both me and Mister Spooky and I'm so glad I was able to see my family and just relax!
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