Revel Home’s Wyer Modern Industrial EcoFriendly Mini Pendant Lamp

I’ve needed to update a few of the fixtures in my home, and it’s hard shopping at big-box stores because they only want to carry contractor-grade cheap and make you special order anything nice. Shopping online for lamps and fixtures can be a dizzying, harrowing experience, what with the over-abundance of selection and and sometimes-questionable descriptions and pictures, you can end up with something you hate and live with or have to pay to return. Revel home comes to the rescue with products that not only look as good as the pictures online, I dare say the products exceed expectations and even look better!

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This is my second go-round with products from Revel Home, and while the last one, a counter-height barstool, was awesome, this lamp, to me, is even better. Packed well, made well, and looks like a million bucks installed, it was a dream to work with. The drop pendant style is my favorite, but sometimes Hubby has to mickey-mouse what I like to fit into our somewhat shorter ceiling heights. This time adjusting the drop was a breeze, just by adjusting the plastic cord “lock” inside the mounting plate. Installation took Hubby about 30 minutes, because we’v done these types of lamps before, but one huge oversight (which is probably just an anomaly) was the lack of instructions for installing. Thankfully, we know our way around them and it wasn’t an issue. The glass “canister” is thick and sturdy, and the antique-bronze looking metal accents are gorgeous. It swings free when installed so even if your ceilings are slightly uneven, your lamp won’t be. It also accepts incandescent, LED, and CFL bulbs and can be used with a dimmer as well. Revel Home even included a vintage-Edison-style LED bulb, which in and of itself can sometimes run you $10 or more, but Revel Home gives it to you for free.

Therein lies the only minus I could find, and it’s not a shortcoming at all of the lamp, but all of these style of bulbs cast a harsh yellow pallor over everything. When turned off they look stunning, and I have no doubt in the right environment there’s no issues, but in my cream-and white color scheme in the room I installed it in, every thing was yellow. Very, very yellow, and I replaced the bulb with a cool white LED just fine.  At $55.99 on Amazon it’s a little on the steep side, which stops me just short of a 5 star rating, because similar lamps can be had elsewhere for as little as half that price, but I adore everything else about the lamp and the company and recommend them highly.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

TCP Global’s 7″ Variable-Speed Polisher Kit with 6 Polishing Pads


It is so easy sometimes to forget to take care of our vehicles properly, what with our hectic lives and lack of free time for anything substantial, like waxing and polishing our vehicle to properly maintain the paint and overall looks of something we paid 10’s of thousands of dollars for. And yet, we do, so TCP Global has something to make a tedious, mundane chore like waxing your vehicle so much quicker, easier, and simpler.

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And yet the TCP Global 7″ Speed Polisher with 6 Polishing Pads kit can be as simple or complex as you need it to be, with multiple pads for different levels of waxing depending on the needs of your paint. Personally, I’ve been chewed out in my younger years for washing my car with soft soap and my hands before a big date, but Hubby came along and immediately put the kibosh on that, and showed me the importance of keeping the exterior or my car clean and properly maintained. This kit will definitely help you accomplish that, with variable speeds and a digital RPM readout screen to help you keep things even and uniform. There’s plenty of power in the 10 Amp, 1200 watt motor here for tough “cleaning” waxes for neglected paint, even as far as cutting waxes for severely weather-worn paints. But it’s also gentle enough for a clear coat quick polish as well, with a setting as low as 600 rpm, or as high as 3000 rpm for a liquid-like shine. The seven inch polishing pad covers enough real estate to make even waxing our big honking 4Runner a quick 45-minute task instead of an “all afternoon” task. You can even vary the grips as needed, with a simple side handle (similar to an angle grinder) for vertical applications, and a removable top mounted handle for trunks, hoods and tops that are horizontal. The 8 different waffle-foam pads are textured for 8 different levels of polishing, depending on the needs of your paint, with standar hook-and-loop attachment. Add a convenient high-impact molded carry/storage case, and you’ve got a professional-quality tool for less than the cost of a professional detail job.

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And TCP Global stands firmly behind every product they sell. This 7″ Speed Polisher is comprehensive without feeling daunting for someone who’s just getting serious about automotive care, but not so over-the-top that a female like myself feels it’s “too much tool” for me. I’m glad I got to try it and can’t wait to see the results.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from TCP Global. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Home Furnishing’s Network Tool Kit

Nothing is worse than a spaghetti monster of wires all over the house. WiFi is awesome, probably one of the top 3 things that changed my life for the better. And yet, despite the level of convenience it provides, there are times you need to go wired. Except, unlike regular standard phone jacks all over our homes, RJ-45 type cables are not as ubiquitous. What’s a gal (or guy) to do?

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Home Furnishing has a simple all-in-one Network Tool Set that helps make running CAT-5 cables to your high-bandwidth devices so much easier. With a combo plier/crimper, wire stripper, cable tester, network connector, and 100 RJ-45 tips to customize CAT-5 (or 6 or 7) lengths to your specific needs. Now, I will admit the instructions were not written as clearly as I would like, and in some instances were downright confusing. SO, if you’re like me and running wiring isn’t you’re forte, you might have to break out your Google machine and get some pointers. The action on the crimpers/pliers was smooth enough, but the blade for the wire cutter in the handle is in a horrible place and might (probably will) cut the user eventually. Likewise the wire stripper could give problems because it requires you to bend a piece of plastic and as anyone who’s bent plastic over and over knows, that means it will eventually break. The major upside is you get the entire kit for under $15.00, which is what most charge for just the crimper.

It’s a decent value for the home DIY’er looking to crimp a few cables and clean up a mess of wound-up wires and only use it once or twice without breaking the bank. But this isn’t a tool built for longevity or for constant repeated use, so if that’s what you need, you might want to look elsewhere.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from Home Furnishing. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Soft Digits’ 50-In-1 Accessory Kit for GoPros & Action Cameras

It seems everyone and their brother has some sort of body cam, action cam, or GoPro. And while I finally broke down and got one too, you quickly find out that you need accessories to make the most of your action camera experience. Soft Digits wants to make that happen with their affordably-priced 50-in-one accessory kit.

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There’s a lot to like about this kit, and it has enough goodies to fit, mount or wear your action camera just about anywhere. The high-gloss plastic mounts are a little on the rigid side and I have some concerns about durability with repeated snapping in and out of the mounts, but as I’m not doing any “extreme” sporting with my camera, I’m not too worried. The elastic on a few of the body and wrist mounts have started having issues with retaining their elasticity, but that might be because their meant for smaller bodies that Hubby’s. The 50 pieces are really closer to 30 as well, because the 3M adhesive strips and other adhesive bits amount to nearly 20 of the total pieces. The lens cap/cover doesn’t fit my brand of camera housing (mine isn’t a GoPro), and a couple of the pieces don’t fit together as well as they probably should. In the end, my $30 action camera isn’t going to be a huge loss should any of the accessories in this kit fail, but I would be a little wary about a 3, 4, or 500 dollar camera being lost or damaged because one of the bits in this kit failed.

The way I see it, for my cheapie action camera, these are dynamite. A bunch of mounts to see what works for me and what doesn’t, and a zip-up carry case that hold most of it safely (seriously, don’t try to fit it all back in with your camera, because it won’t zip closed). And all at a price that doesn’t break my bank. But if you do major adventuring or extreme sports with your camera, and invested a good chunk of change into it, you might want to get higher-quality accessories, because these are fine for the occasional casual user like me, but the serious enthusiast will be disappointed in the quality.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from Soft Digits. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Ozeri 360 Oscillation Tower Fan

We’ve tried a few fans from Ozeri, because let’s face it, in California, it’s not actually “cold” all that often. And this Ozeri 360 Oscillation fan is just phenomenal in almost every regard, and might even be my favorite.

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To start, this fan is whisper-quiet at it’s lowest setting, much more so than the other two Ozeri fans I have tried. There are a ton of functions controlled by either the on-fan control panel or the included IR remote control, like an 8-hour timer and 3 different pre-programmed airflow patterns. There’s almost too many choices! The remote is markedly improved over the last generation, with quick responses to the lightest touch from any angle. The 360 Oscillation Tower Fan from Ozeri also uses cylindrical motion technology with over 200 staggered micro-blades, making the operation quieter than traditional fan blades, and usually reserved for much more expensive brands. The oscillation is (of course) up to 360 degrees, with options for 60, 90, and 120 degrees as well. It’s slim and the oscillation is smooth and quiet as well, so the form factor and obtrusiveness is minimal and not attention-getting.

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However, it’s not all wine and roses. The base is flimsy, and can be terribly unsteady on carpeted floors. It also lacks non-skid or non-marking feet on the base, which can be a concern with softer natural tiles. This is really something that, at $90.79, should absolutely be included. The base needs to be upgraded immediately, because I’d hate for a fan as nice as this to be damaged by toppling over due to a poorly-designed base. Unusual, because the other 2 fans I’ve tested from Ozeri had rock-solid bases. At any rate, the value is undeniable and the operation is smooth. Assuming you can live with or work around the issues with the base of the fan, you’ve got another excellent Ozeri product.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from Moderna Housewares/Ozeri.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Smarson WIFI HD Digital Action Sports Camera

You know a product is a hit when there are countless imitators and knock-offs of your innovation. Sometimes, it’s a product slapped together to cash in on a craze and it’s junk. Sometimes, it’s about making a quality product that comes in at a fraction of the price to open the market to buyers who’d never have thought about, say, an HD action camera before. Smarson isn’t the former, it’s definitely the latter.

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We got a cheap-o HD action cam this summer to play around in the pool with the dog and record the memories. Sadly, though “Bresser” claimed full HD, the picture quality was poor, with washed out color and grainy video. And that was where Smarson’s camera shined. The picture was crystal-clear in outdoor light and there was no judder with quick “action” scenes (As much action as a 12 year-old dog can muster!). And there was a host of accessories included to make mounting your camera on nearly any surface possible. At 12 mp, and full 1080p (1920 x 1080) recording (30fps), you get all the clarity of high definition recording, or you can downgrade your image to 720p and go up to 60fps for great slo-mo. you get mutiple shooting modes, (treble shot function, time lapse, continuous shooting, self-timer, and driving mode), a 170 degree wide angle lens, and a similar user interface to the industry leader, the GoPro series of cameras. And, at this price point, you also get WiFi capabilities via Smarson’s iSmartDV App (for iOS and Android 4.4 and up), which is a real bonus to me, even if the range for the wifi is pretty limited (around 10-15 feet, line of sight). It’s small but rugged, and the build seems solid, unlike the other bargain brand action cam I tried that felt flimsy and the battery cover would constantly fall off. The included lucite case is dust and dirt proof and water-resistant up to 30 meters. My pool is only 9 feet deep, so I can safely say from experience it’s solid up to 9 feet! The included 3.7v 900mAh battery is rated for as much as 90 minutes of continuous recording, Thought I’ve gotten up to three hours of off-and-on recording in one afternoon with juice left after. But never worry, the camera will run off the included micro-USB cable and wall adapter, so you’re never without juice. I also had good success with up to a 32gb micro-SD card, and on that card you could record and store a few hours of full HD videos.

And while there is plenty of bang for your buck here, a couple of things are not particularly great. At the $50 price point, you get a lot of value, and a cheap 4gb micro SD card should really be included like most action cams do at this price point, so you can go right out of the box. And while almost every GoPro accessory should work perfect with this awesome Smarson HD Action Cam, the battery is non-standard and getting a replacement or spare might prove troublesome. Also, the 1.5″ TFT LCD at the rear is soooo tiny, with the screen to bezel ratio being almost 50-50. But, again, the value here is undeniable and the quality for the price is top-notch. I feel the positives far outweigh the negatives enough that this Smarson camera earns a full 5 stars from me.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from Samrson. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Best Buy Experience BlogHer Summit Booth Visit

We all have our mobile devices attached to our hip, and rarely do we review what we’re paying every month for to make sure what we have meets our needs. Best Buy pointed out a new (to me) feature, their “Mobile Plan and Compare tool”. Does your carrier still cover you well? Do you have access to the 4g LTE bands you need to make the most of your phone? What category and speeds do you get? What speeds and data do you need? Did you know something like 50% of all cell phone users are overpaying for features and data they don’t use? I found out I was! You can head in to any Best Buy store for a free, no-obligation evaluation today, no appointment needed. If you haven’t ever thought about these things, then the Best Buy Mobile Plan and Compare tool is totally for you.

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And I just happened to see a new bauble that really caught my eye, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. Hubby’s been saying for months we need a new phone, and despite it being much more phone than I would need, it have the power and features that put a lot of those so-called “flagship” phones to shame. I love the camera, quick shutter, excellent low-light photos, the in-camera HDR and high resolution, DSLR quality photos…And that screen! Sharp, crisp, with a pixel density that makes my current phone look downright fuzzy! This is a phone to aspire to!

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I’ m really thankful for these opportunities from BlogHer and Best Buy, because being an LG gal, I might not have looked Samsung’s way, but man am I glad I did.

 

The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free

BU Nail Treatment Laser Device

My husband was a high school athlete who, bless his heart, didn’t understand the first thing about keeping his feet and toenails free from fungus in his locker rooms. Consequently, he ended up with a bad fungus on one toe and nail that he has tried treating with OTC creams, tree oils, prescription creams and pills, all to no avail. So when BU offered their Laser device to treat and eradicate nail fungus, I was thrilled for him.

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The thrill, as the song says, is gone. The laser does not work. The instructions were woefully inadequate and gave you no idea how long, or how many times, to use it daily. There is, thankfully an auto-shutoff. But after treating first once daily for about 7 minutes, then going up to twice, I can say with great confidence and greater disappointment there has been absolutely zero change in my poor Hubby’s nail color, shape or brittleness, or health and the fungus remains, unabated. I tried emailing “BU”, the manufacturer, but got no response to my queries. There are several other identical nail fungus lasers on Amazon that suffer from the same lack of results. But, at prices ranging from $100 to $200 or more, you expect (and are promised) results, and there are none. Save your money for a real doctor or real treatment, this laser does not work.

It’s too bad, because I’ve used lasers for home treatments from very reputable companies like Tria, so I know lasers do work for many, many maladies, but this one simply does not. In fact, a quick look at the circuit board reveals 3 bright blue LED’s, and what looks to be the 905nm wavelength pulsed laser diode, which emits infrared laserlight that is invisible to the naked eye. What’s concerning is that a 905nm laser is supposed to be a class IIIb laser product, and the label on this laser says is either a class I laser, or class 2 depending on which portion of the label you want to believe. Also, a 25w laser (as this is advertised to be) is very powerful and could produce burns, but a 25mW laser, which I believe this to be, would not. So there’s some misleading info all over the packaging, but it’s all window dressing on a product that produced no result. I can’t recommend this product, or the company that didn’t respond to any of my concerns. Sorry.

I received the above product(s) free of charge from BU. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

BlazeVideo Wireless WiFi 720P IP/Cloud Camera


Normally, I do long, detailed reviews. I’m in the midst of a small personal issue, so this and other reviews for the immediate future will be brief.

This is a well-made camera. The image sensor is good and the images it produces are sharp and crisp. There is minimal lag in response times for the pan/tilt/zoom features. The app is functional and intuitive, and even if it tends to log you out from time to time. The app will also hang with prolonged viewing and display a static image. This will require a close and restart of the app. One other slight annoyance, that I have not had the time to look if I can correct, is the inversion of the PTZ controls. Up is down, left is right, etc. Counter-intuitive and very annoying. The night vision is very good, and the IR lights give better zero-light illumination than my Amcrest 720p PTZ IP camera, but this comes at a cost, because glare through a window is considerably increased, to the point of obscuring the image if it’s shining straight at the window or door. This is much more than my previously used Amcrest camera.

This is a much better built camera that others I have tested, and I would say the fit and finish surpasses the Amcrest and Foscam cameras I’ve used in the past. The antennae on the back for the wireless is a bit old-fashioned, as most of the wireless IP cameras in this price range have an integrated antennae, but it does increase the wireless range so it’s wash. The signal still drops intermittently though. You can (and I have, successfully on my Lorex IP system) connect this camera to an existing IP security camera setup via CAT5 or CAT6 cables. So if you have an open channel on your home security camera setup, this will plug and play. There is a cloud feature as well as microSD card slot for onboard storage. I feel the price is too high even if the camera is quality, for a 720p camera. if you knock $25-$30 off this, you have a solid contender here with good features and a great build.

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Blaze Video. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation in exchange for my review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

Bstean Industrial Syringe applicators w/ Blunted Tips and Caps

How many times have we tried to apply glue, lubricant, water, or alcohol to a very specific place only to have it spill over, dribble, or miss and nearly ruin what we were trying to protect, clean or preserve? It’s happened to me countless times, but it won’t be happening again in the near future thanks to these wonderful Bstean Syringe applicators.

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Content in the past with being inaccurate or buying those cheap, disposable bulb applicators, or even a cotton swab or Q-Tip, these syringe applicators are a crafter’s DREAM! I never again have to worry about slopping glue or oil or even droplets of paint, I can now apply them all with laser accuracy! With blunted tips to keep from accidentally jabbing yourself, you still get pin-point application or whatever viscous liquid you want to apply. Hubby even swiped a few because let’s face it, gun and knife lubes are not cheap, and you don’t want to be slopping oils on parts that absolutely don’t need it or could damage the tool. Need to apply a light grease to a hinge? Problem solved. Need a few drops of that expensive, fancy Benchmade lubricant? Got you covered. Want a single drop of glue for a delicate crafting project? Yup, Bstean’s syringes are up to the task. Single droplets of paint on a project? Done and done!

BStean actually took some of the criticisms to heart and have included rubber caps or stoppers for filling your syringe applicator from the back with particularly viscous fluids. Still lacking, though, is the notice on the Amazon order page that all the syringes come printed with “Single Use” on them. Hubby disregarded that, and stuck his for his knives and guns in a zip top baggie and squirreled them away with his other tools for his “stuff”. No problems to report from re-use, though. The ones used for glue are almost always single use anyways, because the glues will harden in the tubes. But at only $9.89 shipped for a pack or 10, you get four different sizes, too: 1ml x 3, 3ml x 3, 5ml x 2, 10ml x 2  with needle gauges ranging from 1.5” 14Gx2, 1” 18Gx2, 1/2” 16Gx3, 20Gx3, and color coded for your convenience. Really sturdy, industrial grade, really well-made with metal needle syringe applicators, I plan on buying more in the future as my old ones get used up. Great product all around with a multitude of uses, and a fantastic price.

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I received the above product(s) free of charge from BStean. I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion. I received no other compensation for this review. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

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