Tag Archives: Lifestyle

I’m back!

Hey everyone!

I’ve been silent on here for a while now and thought I’d do a checking in post to try and get myself in the habit of blogging again. I intended to post regularly on this blog and I never wanted the ‘hello again sorry I’ve been silent’ posts to become a regular thing but I guess life just got in the way.

For anyone who kept up with my blog (who am I kidding? XD) you’ll know I was studying for my Masters in International Journalism and this blog, whilst enjoyable, was a major form of procrastination. My dissertation was horrendous, the process of it that is. Whilst I was still receiving My Little Box I just didn’t have time for reviews. I love doing the list style blog posts but again, how could I justify writing up a 1,000 word blog post when I still had 15,000 words to write for my dissertation.

I avoided the dissertation module like the plague during my undergrad but this time around I had no choice. Honestly I have never cried, stressed or had as many sleepless nights because of academic work as much as I did during my dissertation BUT I did it! I will be graduating in just under 2 weeks with a Distinction, something I’m unbelievably proud of.

I treated myself to a lovely holiday with my boyfriend as a post graduation treat. I also had my nephew arriving to look forward to. His due date fell on my dissertation deadline and I was crossing my fingers and hoping he would give me a litle extra time to submit the work before he arrived in the world. And he did. In true mischievous style though he was late and arrived exactly one hour before my flight to the Canaries left. Although I loved my holiday I couldn’t wait to get home and meet him, our beautiful little Noah. He’s already 9 weeks old, it’s crazy how quick time goes.

Also in other exciting news, I have an internship! I am currently working for Purple Revolver on their video production team- Louis Theroux here I come! Purple Revolver is a online magazine that talks about culture, style, arts/theatre and even a bit of gaming. I’ve been doing some writing for them too, you can check out their website here. Okay, that may be a link to my most recent article but you can also check out their site too! I’ve recently shot a video with them where we interviewed the bands performing at Liverpool Music Week which should be up on their YouTube channel next week, I’ll post the link when it’s live!

I should probably wrap up this post now, for anyone who does or will actually read this thank you! I’m still working my day job to pay bills so with internship included I’m working 6 days a week but I promise to try and dedicate time to update this blog more regularly. I’m in a happy place right now so I should use that to fuel my writing. When I finished my undergrad I felt lost, this time around I actually feel like everything is slowly coming together and I’m excited to see what the future holds career wise!

-Abbie

 

July My Little Box: My Little Coconut Box

Hey everyone!

Honestly it doesn’t feel that long ago that I last uploaded a My Little Box review but I guess that’s what happens when you have a part time job, work placement and a dissertation due at the end of summer. The sun has gone and the weather seems synchronised with my permanent state of anxiety; dull, grey and rainy. This months My Little Box provides a nice little reminder that it is still summer and has gotten me super excited to go on holiday with my boyfriend in September. I can not wait to have my dissertation handed in and to be relaxing on the beach, cocktail in hand. And of course by then I will have met my nephew! Not long to go now little guy until we can all meet you! Until I can proudly show him off and embrace my new status as an Aunty, I’ll introduce you to another small gift- this months My Little Coconut Box!

For anyone who doesn’t know My Little Box is a subscription service priced at £11.95 with £3.95 postage and packaging. Similar to boxes such as Birchbox or GlossyBox, My Little Box sends out 3 beauty products, that are always beautifully packaged, every month. Their USP: not only do you receive beauty products every month but you also receive at least one lifestyle product every month. This has been everything from tshirts to tote bags to jewellery.

Each months box arrives in a sturdy cardboard box to protect your items whilst in the post. When you open this you’ll find your box and a peelable sticker that relates to that months theme as you can see below.


The box itself always carries an illustration from the talented Kanako Kuno. The box is sturdy and super handy for storage needs. I tend to use them for storing jewellery or things like hair ties and clips. If you feel like being more creative you can always visit YouTube where there are so many tips and tutorials for how to turn these boxes into various things.

When you open the box everything is neatly tied with a ribbon, which again i always keep hold of, you never know when a piece of ribbon might come in handy. You’re almost always met with a thin piece of card that carries a quote, usually relating to that months theme. As you can see this months carried a quote from Dustin Hoffman. Underneath is the My Little Box magazine and, thankfully, they have once again chosen the glossy mag. The alternative was a fold out poster style magazine that just wasn’t as user friendly.


This month I was lucky to receive not one but two lifestyle products, that were both presented beautifully.

The first was presented in an envelope that reads ‘Oh the places you’ll go’. At first I thought this might be a collection of post cards similar to last summers box but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is, infact, a very pretty passport holder. The design is very summer and after trying it out with my passport, it keeps it fitted very snug. However. I will say that when I took this out of the envelope I immediately noticed two marks on the bottom right hand corner. I’ve never experienced a product being damaged or marked from My Little Box before so I’m not sure I’ll kick up a fuss but it is a shame that it didn’t look as squeaky clean as you’d expect a new item to be.


You can see the marks here ^^^ I’ve tried giving the marks a wipe with water but so far no luck.

The second item was a beautifully presented bracelet from the brand Stella & Dot which apparently has a RRP of £18. The bracelet is very dainty and minimalistic so is very on trend and current. I’m sure it will look lovely paired with a tan and a nice summer dress. I love the packaging and how the inside of the box reminds me of sand, once again just screaming holiday.

Overall I was really impressed, bar the scuffs, of this months lifestyle items. I was hoping the beauty items would live up to the bar these products. I will admit, from the clues My Little Box were leaving I was 90% sure one of the products would be coconut oil. I wasn’t too wrong but unfortunately I didn’t receive a tub of the miracle product that is coconut oil. However the coconut theme does run through the products perfectly which is something previous months themes just don’t do. As (almost) always the products are presented in a cotton drawstring bag that comes in super handy for storing toiletries, bikinis, laungerie etc when travelling.


My Little Box must have been feeling really generous this month as I also received 4 products in this months bag as opposed to the usual 3. Each month you are guaranteed at least one full size product from My Little Box’s own range. Unfortunately you can’t buy them in the UK yet but that only makes receiving them all the more special. I always find their products have such a lovely scent (I’ve been using last months salt spray almost every day) and this months was no exception. More on that in a moment! This month I received: a coconut scented, moisturising after sun spray from My Little Box’s own range, a small sample of hair oil from Ojon, a 20ml sample of Yves Rocher’s coconut scented perfume and an alcohol hand cleansing gel from Merci Handy- which again is coconut scented.


First we have the after sun spray from My Little Box. I’ll admit, when I first used this I didn’t even realise it was an after sun spray, I thought it was just a normal body spray as the fragrance is so nice. It has a very simple, sweet fragrance that carries the creamy smell of coconut milk perfectly. The packaging is true to My Little Box and has a very simplistic, minimalist packaging that always looks pretty on my beauty shelf.


Next we have the Ojon rare blend hair oil. This promises to do numerous things such as rehydrate hair, eliminate frizz and boost shine.

Next we have the Yves Rocher coconut scented perfume. I sprayed a bit of this and found it actually has the most realistic, coconut scent. It kind of smells like the corridors in hotels if that makes sense? You know when you can smell the warm weather and the air is mixed with the smell of greenery and sun cream and oils? Maybe that’s just me but that’s definitely what this perfume reminds me of.


Finally we have the Merci Handy hand sanitizer. Working in a retail job where I have to deal with money every shift, hand sanitizer always come in very handy- excuse the pun. I seem to have sensitive skin on my hands because after a few shifts in work my hands seem to flare up. The beads in this bottle aim to provide moisture but as far as the scent goes, I can’t really pick up the coconut hints. It smells just like regular alcohol hand gel to me.


So that about wraps it up for this months box. As always I will point out that My Little Box does not guarantee that every item is cruelty free. As I’ve stated in previous reviews, any company that sells their products in China will be subjected to laws by the Chinese government in which products must be tested on animals before being sold to the general public. From my research, both Ojon and Yves Rocher have entered the Chinese market- although Yves Rocher have spoken out about their desire to work with the Chinese authorities to get these laws changed. I think next month will be my last delivery from My Little Box as I only received a years subscription as a birthday present. If anyone can recommend any nice cruelty free vegan alternatives please do let me know!

P.S I’m sorry this post has been extra long due to there being more products that usual in this months box!

-Abbie

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated or endorsed by My Little Box to post these reviews (I wish this blog was successful enough for that haha), all boxes are paid for by me my boyfriend and all reviews are my 100% honest opinions.

Follow me on Twitter at: @abbieorbee

Follow me on Instagram at: @abbienotabby

You can also read my June, May, April and March reviews.

June My Little Box: My Little Summer Vibe Box

Wow what a week this has been! I’m not sure how it has been for everyone else but here in Liverpool the sun has been shining and I even got burnt (why didn’t I borrow your sun cream Ariane?!) Weather has been maxing at 26 which, for North West England, is really good! So it seemed fitting that My Little Box’s yearly summer box came in nice and early just like the sun.

My boyfriend has just got a new car so decided that his previous ‘job’ of being my ‘taxi driver’ was not something he hated any more but something he was actually begging to do. The box arrived and we decided to go to Sefton Park (a beautiful, renowned park in Liverpool that should definitely be visited). I decided that the greenery and flowers would prove perfect for an unboxing but lo and behold out rolled the grey clouds and down poured the rain! But it’s the thought that counts right?

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Like always I will state that this box is not necessarily vegan or cruelty free. I have a years subscription (before I transitioned from vegetarian to vegan) bought by my boyfriend that will end in August. If anyone knows of any vegan boxes to replace this please let me know! 🙂

Firstly I was happy to see that the quote cards are still alive and kicking. I guess the gyst of this months card is a holiday checklist- when you’re a forgetful as me this is always a plus!

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Again I like how My Little Box has stuck to the glossy mag as opposed to the foldout poster style magazine they have previously favoured. I just find the glossy magazine easier to read and more user friendly. Every month my little box include a ‘gimmick’ item, except this month it was like an extra treat, especially when you consider the hot weather as of late.

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I’ve previously been sent a blend of loose leaf green tea by Kusmi that was delicious. I’m excited to try this ice tea blend and I will be sure to let you know what I think!

What sets My Little Box apart from other boxes is the inclusion of a lifestyle product every month. I always get excited by the lifestyle product because for me personally, they almost never disappoint. Previous months have included things such as tote bags, beads for customisation of ear phones and photo frames. I will admit I did spoil this months for myself by visiting the My Little Spoiler page but I was delighted all the same.

 

Now ignore the bad photos, I placed my boyfriend in charge of the photographs and complimentary with the camera he is not! Basically the tshirt is a white tank top that reads ‘Girls just wanna have sun’. The material is soft but a little on the thin side. I’m not sure if I’d incorporate this into my daily wardrobe but it will definitely be travelling in my suitcase as a coverup on the beach or teemed with shorts for a relaxed holiday outfit.

Next we have the three items that I know you’re all really here to see. Usually My Little Box provide a cotton drawstring bag containing the beauty items, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts these come in super handy for storing toiletries or general organisation. This month however, the items came packed in a strong, sealed plastic bag that serves as a swimwear bag. I think this is such a good idea! Often, when I’ve travelled out of the country on holiday,my flight leaves at a really awkward time. Although I may not be departing until the night time, I feel as though I can’t have one last dip in the pool due to fear of the dreaded wet clothing smell invading my suitcase. This would be a perfect combat to this and I really love the idea!

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This months bag contained three items which you can see below …

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The first product I will admit I got a little tooooo excited about. I initially thought this was a glitter eyeshadow but upon reading the product information it is in fact a primer for glitter shadows. Although not as exciting, I fortunately own quite a few glitter based eyeshadows. Next is a nail polish by Ciate. As I’ve previously stated I’m not a big nail vanish girl due to the job I work in. However it is a nice shade and I’ll follow up with a sample of the colour on my Twitter- you can find the link to follow me at the end or in my contact me tab! Finally I received a salt spray which I am super happy with. I love relaxed surfer waves and when you know how to handle salt spray, it is perfect in achieving those laid back curls.

All in all I am super happy with this box, maybe with the exception of the nail varnish but I guess that’s kind of expected with boxes of this nature. My Little Box sends out different products based on a survey that all subscribers  must complete. Maybe your box differed from mine? I’d love to read about what you received and your thoughts on this months box! You can comment below or tweet me at @abbieorbee

– Abbie

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated or endorsed by My Little Box to post these reviews (I wish this blog was successful enough for that haha), all boxes are paid for by me my boyfriend and all reviews are my 100% honest opinions.

Follow me on Twitter: @abbieorbee

Instagram: abbienotabby

I’ve also posted a March, April and May My Little Box Review.

All vegans are crazy [+why I made the switch]

From my experiences that is an opinion I hear echoed through the meat eaters of society. Before I jump into this blog post entirely let me first just point out how false that statement is. Don’t get me wrong there are some vegans who are ‘crazy’, but there are meat eaters and various other members of society who are ‘crazy’ too. I mean throwing that word around has tons of negative influence towards the mental health movement and it kind of insults people who do suffer with mental health issues but right now that’s a whole different debate entirely. Vegans may seem ‘crazy’ to you but to me I can’t think of anything more crazy than willingly supporting the oppression of innocent, sentient beings who have thoughts, feelings and a central nervous system just like you. Would you like your dog or your cat to be impregnated against their will? Have their children ripped away from them moments after birth? Have their male offspring simply put straight through a grinder because they’re not valuable enough to justify their upkeep? Be hung upside down and watch their fellow species have their throats slit knowing they’re next? No you wouldn’t because that would make you an immoral person if you did and you should really question your desire to own a pet if that’s the case. Now I want to emphasise that I’m not out to convert people. I don’t have any issues with people who eat meat as you can read about in my similar blog post here. I just wanted to present the other side to the story as opposed to vegans being labelled as aggressive and ‘crazy’.

When I first began this blog I was in the phase of transitioning from vegan to vegetarian. Don’t get me wrong I had slip ups, I’ll admit that. I don’t think that makes me a bad person because it just motivated me even more to keep what I was eating in check. I think the biggest mistake I made was trying to jump straight from a meat eating diet into veganism. There may be vegans who have done this straight away and for them would say ‘it’s easy’ but just like quitting nicotine, our SAD diet is addictive to our bodies. Dairy is addictive, it’s something the majority of us have spent most of our lives consuming. As long as people keep their end goal in mind, that end goal being vegan, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking it in steps. Pesketarian, vegetarian and then vegan. Do what you need to do to get there and not just get there, stay there.

Educate yourself too. Honestly for me that was the best decision I made. I’d always wanted to eat vegetarian but as a kid my willpower wasn’t that strong. As I got older I desensitised myself to meat, I made myself think of it as a seperate thing to the living animal it once was. I couldn’t bear chopping up chicken breasts or even handling any meat raw- that was left to my boyfriend. Likewise I have always been anti fur and anti testing on animals for cosmetic reasons. I just realised one day that I was a walking contradiction. I couldn’t think some things were wrong and continue to support the meat and dairy industry. So I tried to go vegan and I watched bits of films such as earthlings but I couldn’t stomach watching the torture that ensued. So I went vegan and I ended up slipping and eating dairy again, essentially eating a fully vegetarian diet. I knew that wasn’t good enough so I forced myself to watch the documentaries, educate myself with literature and seminars and honestly now? I couldn’t even dream of eating meat or consuming dairy again. For me forcing myself to watch the videos was the best thing I could have ever done and I think if you’re trying to go vegan it’s something you should make yourself do. It’s not nice and it’s not easy to watch but ultimately if it helps you stand up to the oppression and slaughter of innocent animals then why shouldn’t you watch?

As always I’d love to know what you think. Have you made the transition? What was it that made you say enough is enough? Leave your comments below or contact me through the tab at the top ^^^

You can read my similar post ‘The problem with going vegan is…’ here.

You can also follow me on Twitter at @abbieorbee

– Abbie

19 thoughts I’ve definitely had as a 24 year old

I’m sure anyone who is at the early twentys stage of their life, or those who have already experienced it, will know/remember what a confusing time it is. You know you’re still young but compared to fresh faced 18 year olds you feel old.  However take into account demands and responsibilities of the ‘real world’ and suddenly you feel 12 years old again begging your parents to help you out and not sacrifice you to the world of bills and debt. The age of 25 looms over you and your younger friends all remind you that you’ll soon be ‘halfway to 50’ and you think oh god. How did this happen?? That age is a mere 3 months away, closer to 2 and 1/2 months if you want to be technical, for yours truly so as my birthday looms ever closer I thought I’d share 19 thoughts I’ve almost definitely had as a 24 year old.

1) How have I gone from being a young 23 year old to 24?! I’m so old. Stop singing happy birthday! STOP!

Via Giphy

2) Yeah I’ve got plenty of time to find a graduate job, I only graduated last…TWO YEARS AGO?! Is this a prank?

3) Fuck this I’m doing a Masters. Take me back to the student life!

4) What do you mean this is my last paid for holiday? Im your child! Okay I’m a childult. Don’t leave me behind Mum & Dad!

Via Giphy

5) Woo freshers! Wait are those people even legal to be in this club right now? Oh I forgot. That’s what being 18 looks like.

Via Giphy


6) My parents are still buying me Christmas clothes and everyone on Facebook is buying presents for their babies. What is life?

7) Yes I know you’re driving me back to my own apartment but that doesn’t mean I’ve moved out the family home for good.

8) Why is everyone from my undergrad so successful and I’m still in lectures. Why didn’t I apply for a graduate job???

9) Why is everyone around me suddenly getting engaged? We’re too young for that. Oh wait. No we’re not.

10) What? The Killers aren’t that old! I listen to Sam’s Town all the time, it’s definitely not 10 years old. Oh wait…once again how has this happened?


11) How has my life gotten here?

12) Maybe I should go down a different career path. If I could afford another BA I would be 26, 27…28?! 28 when I’d graduate again!!??

13) I want to produce documentaries and I’m 24. Fuck. I’m nearing my Media sell by date. Uhhubcriybuybcuhbwrcuhbwrcuhb. Another drink please.

 

via Giphy
 

14) Oh no graduation is looming close again, I can’t avoid the real world this time….well…there is always a PhD course…

15) No. I’m ready. I can do this, I’m going to apply for tons of jobs right now and be proactive!

16) I definitely can’t do this.

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17) The age I want to be married and have kids by? 28 I guess, that’s the age I’ve always said anyway. Oh god that’s only 3 years away??? But I haven’t lived my life!

18) How have I not travelled the world?! How have I spent my young adult life solely in university and working part time jobs???

19) I’m just going to go to sleep. I’ll think about responsibilities tomorrow. Or the next day. Or the day after that. I’m still so young after all.

 

Via Giphy
 


May My Little Box: My Little Dolce Vita Box

Hi everyone! Two blog posts in the same week can you believe it? I’m proud of myself, usually this is where I bore everyone with excuses for why I’m such a lazy blogger soooo I’m going to give myself a pat on the back, especially considering I’m currently very hungover 💁🏼 Today’s blog post is going to be different from my last (for any new readers), I finally got the courage to post my blog through my Facebook so I think a lot of people I know would have only read my piece on cognitive enhancement. Judging from my stats though, the My Little Box reviews are my most popular posts and I’m glad that people get as excited about My Little Box as I do. It literally makes me feel like a kid at Christmas again, counting down the days of each month until my new box arrives and this months was SUPER early, which was a nice suprise. For anyone who doesn’t know about My Little Box: they’re a subscription service (based in Paris) in which every month you receive a box that has a different theme. What makes My Little Box different from other subscriptions such as Birchbox is that not only do you receive sample (and full size) beauty and grooming products, you also receive lifestyle products too. Things such as tshirts, tote bags, planters, jewellery and so on. Each box comes with a hand drawn illustration by My Little Box’s resident designer Kanako Kuno, which adds to the overall ‘cute/pretty’ feel of the box.

This months theme is Italy and the phrase ‘Dolce Vita’, Google tells me it means ‘a life of heedless pleasure and luxury’. If that’s wrong and I’ve just butchered the phrase I apologise but blame Google! 

Firstly I just want to point out, as I did in My Little Flower Book review, I’m happy the style has returned to the traditional box rather than the ribboned book. When you open the cardboard box you’re met with your pretty box and usually a sticker that I just stick either on the mirror or in random places in the flat, to which my boyfriend follows me around taking them all down. Men! As you can see this months sticker says ‘Baci baci’, again I had to Google this phrase and I’m told it means ‘Kisses, kisses’, or I guess maybe kiss kiss? I’ll just move on before I potentially falsely quote any more of the Italian language.

I love this months illustration, when I think of Italy I think of chic, sleek fashion (and good food obviously) and I think Kanako captured this perfectly. It’s not very often I’m jealous of illustrations but I want that outfit, real or not!

Another thing I was happy to see is that the quotes on cards have returned. My brain isn’t working well today, I’ll blame the alcohol so I’m sure there is a better term for those. Basically every month each box usually contains a nice little quote on good quality card that you can either frame or give to people or just collect. Everything is tied together neatly with a ribbon. Usually you have what I call the gimmick item here but this months box contained an extra lifestyle product (exciting!) which you can see below

Each month I end up, somehow, spoiling the suprise for myself. Usually by accidentally reading a spoiler on my Facebook newsfeed. This month however, I managed to avoid that so I had no idea what to expect. Looking at the smaller box I had figured it would be a piece of jewellery and I was right! I assumed the bigger box would be a scarf but I prefer what it actually is

It is in fact a hair turban, in the run up to summer and holiday season I’m very thankful for this. I personally love this pattern but I know it won’t be to everyone’s taste. But like it or not it will definitely come in handy whilst sunbathing, there is nothing more annoying than trying to keep hair off a sticky, sun screened face. It will definately be coming along in my suitcase this year but as this fits my general style anyway I’ll probably wear it of a day, here in England, too and work it into my style.

As I said before my guess at jewellery was right! Inside is a beautiful little ring that’s shaped like a leaf curled around your finger. Again this fits into my style really well so I’m very happy with this months lifestyle items. I would have uploaded a picture of myself wearing it but at the time my nail polish was chipped and looked a bit ugly so maybe I’ll post one to Instagram or Twitter at some point (I’ll give the links to follow me at the end!)

Finally we have the beauty/grooming products that always come in a handy drawstring back that is usually illustrated differently each month. I say it in all my reviews but for any new readers, these bags are amazingly handy and worth keeping hold of. I use them for storing toiletries whilst travelling and general organising.

Inside you usually receive three items. Occasionally you may receive an extra item but this month I got three:

Starting from the left we have a product from My Little Box’s own brand My Little Beauty. I personally love this brand as the packaging is always very neat, usually minimalistic and the products always smell amazing. This months is an illuminating moisturiser for legs, I’m guessing the purpose is to highlight a tan but unfortunately I’m like a milk bottle right now so I’ve not actually tried it out. I had a quick smell though and it has a very orange, citrus like scent so perfect for summer. Next is a body oil by the brand Baija. With My Little Box being a Parisian subscription service, the products received are always of a French background. I’d never heard of Baija until a few months ago when I received a floral moisturiser that was literally one of the nicest things I’ve ever smelt. Again I’ve not yet tried the oil but the green tea and jasmine scent is very refreshing and clean. Lastly we have another product from My Little Beauty, which is a decent sized sample of a fragrance called ‘la fille de l’air’ which, once again, trusty Google translates as ‘daughter of the air’. I’m usually sceptical about fragrances I don’t know about but I’m very pleased with the scent. It’s a very clean, subtle floral scent that is sweet yet not overpowering. I wouldn’t trade my other perfumes in for this entirely but it’s nice to carry around in your handbag which is exactly what I did last night.

Overall I’m really pleased with this months box. I’m not sure it’s my favourite ever as I always prefer receiving makeup items as opposed to moisturisers etc but I am still happy with the products I received. The lifestyle items are perfect for me and something I will definitely make use of! My Little Box ships different products so there is no guarantee you will receive the same products that someone else has and I know each country they ship to have slightly different contents. So I like to be nosy and ask what you all received too! Did you receive different products? Do you like them? How would you rate this months box? Drop me a comment below and let me know 🙂 For now I’m going to try and convince my boyfriend to take me to Liverpool’s new Vegan restaurant Give Kitchen to nurse my hangover. If it works maybe I’ll even have two blog posts in one day! As always thanks for reading 🙂

-Abbie

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated or endorsed by My Little Box to post these reviews (I wish this blog was successful enough for that haha), all boxes are paid for by me my boyfriend and all reviews are my 100% honest opinions

Connect with me on Instagram here: AbbienotAbby

Follow me on Twitter here: @abbieorbee

You can also read my April review here and my March review here!