Things I’m obsessed with: Soap.com

soap-comIf you haven’t been to the blog before, or just somehow missed it, I’m someone who doesn’t like to overpay for things. I like a good bargain and I also try to use as few chemicals as possible. I watched “Chemerical” a few years ago, which is this documentary about how your household cleaners and hygiene products are full of chemicals that are harmful to both you and the environment. If you find yourself with an hour and 15 minutes to kill, you should definitely watch it.

20150426_153612After viewing the documentary, I made the choice to begin switching out my cleaning products and hygiene products with all natural options. That led me to Method products. They’re naturally-derived, biodegradable and non-toxic, plus they still work, which is important. I slowly began switching out my toxic cleaners for their non-toxic counterpart. When something would run out, I would replace it with a safer option. As part of that, I found Soap.com.

Soap.com is like an Amazon for household products. In addition to cleaners, they have personal care items, bath and body items, vitamins, grocery items and more. My favorite thing, is that they often run sales where you can get 30 percent off Method products (or other products depending on the sale) by using a promo code at checkout. Plus, and this is the absolute best thing about them, orders over $49 ship free with 1-2 delivery!

20150426_153814To take advantage of the deals, I typically buy all of my cleaning products at one time when the promo code sale is active. I end up spending about $60 for everything (glass cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, dish soap, laundry detergent, dishwasher detergent, kitchen counter cleaner, etc.) and it lasts about 6 months. Granted, we have a household of just two plus our furry family member, but $120 a year for all of our cleaning products is pretty amazing. Now we do buy paper towels, toilet paper and dryer sheets throughout the year, but no actual cleaning products.

Also, I occasionally use Soap.com to hunt down natural and organic sunscreen when they have a sale on it. Have you seen the stuff that’s in sunscreen? Plus, they have obscure gluten-free snacks that aren’t readily available elsewhere. I encourage you to check it out. If you use code GRAC22288 at checkout, you can get 10 percent off your order. Also, I use Ebates (if you don’t have it sign up, you’ll love it!) and they typically have promo codes available as well, plus you get a certain percentage of cash back on your purchase.

Happy cleaning!

This post represents my own experience with Soap.com. I have not been compensated to write this post.

Advertisements

Things I’m obsessed with: Zulily

20140310_185025My friends, a monster has been created. I have become full-on addicted to Zulily. I can’t remember who told me about it or if I saw a commercial, but I love it. I’m a coupon, sale-seeking, won’t buy it if it’s not on sale diva and Zulily fits right in with that. If you’re not familiar with it, Zulily is basically a flash sale site. They advertise sales from various merchants usually starting at 6 a.m. pdt (9 a.m. for us East Coasters) lasting about three days. Once the sale ends, they place a bulk order for all the items sold and then ship you your stuff. The great thing is it’s usually at least 40 percent off, if not more. The not so great thing is it takes a little while to receive your order. Because of their process, you can wait, on average, 3-4 weeks to get your stuff. It varies for each sale, but trust me, these deals are worth the wait.

20140310_185443Last month, they had a TOMS sale. TOMS, in case you aren’t familiar with them, are these fun canvas shoes with hundreds of colors and designs. For every pair purchased, a pair is donated to a child in need. They can be really hard to find on sale, so imagine my delight when I found out they were going to be on Zulily and at a great price! I set my alarm clock (homegirl likes to sleep, plus I had a late meeting for work) and when I logged in at 9:10 a.m., 10 minutes after the start of the sale, some were already sold out. EEK! No worries, I nailed down three pairs. My goal was to get them all in, see which I liked the most in person, and then sell the others. (Another point: there are no returns, but if you know your way around Ebay that isn’t an issue!)

20140310_224115Well, my three fabulous pairs of TOMS arrived at my home Monday, 14 business days after I placed my order, and let’s just say I don’t think I’ll be utilizing the Ebay option. My husband, on the other hand, is less than thrilled. However, I just point out two things: 1) I got three pairs of TOMS for what I would have paid for a pair and a half. 2) My indecisive purchase just gave three pairs of shoes to children in need. How can he argue with that? Plus, I’ll be closet purging via Ebay within the next few weeks to both clean out my closet (cue the Eminem) and pay back my shoe purchase. And also, I probably need a little more space for that super cute shirt that should arrive via Zulily any day now.

If you’re hunting for a good find, please sign up for Zulily. Some of the current sales include Athleta and Vera Bradley.

I was not compensated in any way from Zulily for this post. Seriously though, if you know how to make that happen, let’s talk mmk? Also, if you would be so kind as to sign up through one of my links in this post and make a purchase, I’ll get $15 credit, so thanks. And be sure to share your link once you sign up!

323.365.2

Image

My Ebates check came in the mail. This is the third check I’ve gotten, plus Ron has received one a few weeks ago. It’s the easiest money I’ve ever made. Basically, you sign up for Ebates and then go through their site to get to online merchants that you were already planning to shop at (think Target, Walmart, Victoria’s Secret, Amazon, Ebay, etc.). By going through the Ebates site, you receive a certain percentage of cash back on your purchase made at the retailer. The amounts vary by store. So let’s say I was planning on buying something from Victoria’s Secret. I go through Ebates first and get 2% (for example) cash back on my purchase. The cash back is then collected in my account and mailed out at the end of each quarter. It’s free money for doing what you were already going to do anyway. I love it, especially when I can combine an already great deal with cash back. On both Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Ebates will offer double cash back at more than 500 online stores. So whatever the usual percentage is will be doubled on those two days. It’s worth checking out. Check it out here and maybe you’ll get your first “big fat check” soon.

104.365.2

image

Ron and I really cleaned up at Target today (mostly me since all this is mine). I purchased our Easter Egg dying kit for next year, three boxes of candy, a pez dispenser and a big bag of Laffy Taffy for $3.30. Yes, that is after tax. Everything was 70% off. And they were handing out free samples of Glad trash bags. Best Target trip ever!

11.365.2

image

My coupon stash is nice and full again. After the holidays, it had gotten low because a lot of coupons had expired and very few new ones are released in December. Now, with the new year, tons of coupons are coming out and they’re actually pretty good. Since a common New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, companies recognize this and put healthy food on sale while also releasing coupons to match. I’m not coupon crazy. I don’t stockpile, although I probably would on some things if I had the space. I only buy what we use and try to match sales and coupons accordingly. If you’ve never couponed you should try it. It does save some money and it isn’t all that hard. A site like “Living Rich With Coupons” is a good little starter. The most important thing is to plan ahead. Match the sales with the coupons, taking extras along in case something else is on sale that wasn’t advertised. Don’t be one of those women taking up a whole aisle while you flip through your binder getting organized. Saving money is great, annoying other shoppers isn’t.

346.365

image

Only 12 more days until Christmas. Which also means its almost time for all the men to rush to the store to do their shopping because they wait until the last minute. The smart, experienced wives know they should just add that shopping to their lists so it gets done. The newbie wives, like myself, aren’t in on the secret.

329.365

The tree is up and fully decorated. Everything else is decorated as well and the presents are wrapped. I still have to get some gift cards and get Ron’s present, but everyone else is complete which is nice. Now I can bake and focus on other things than fighting crowds to get shopping done.

328.365

Every year I look forward to Black Friday, and this year was no exception. Ron and I went out last night around 9 p.m. to be in Walmart when the sale started at 10 p.m. We met up with my cousin Anna there. The 10 p.m. sale didn’t include any major electronics, like televisions or blu-ray players, but it did include toys, movies, games, etc. I feel like there were more people in there than before. My guess is people who normally don’t do Black Friday shopping did last night because it’s easier to go out at night than it is to get up super early and go out. We were able to get everything we wanted, except our blu-ray player and a printer. We bought some movies, including Vampire Diaries Season Two ($10), a game for my nephew, a Barbie for my niece and an Elmo backpack for our Angel Tree child. Then it was on to Target which actually closes and opens its doors at midnight, which means you stand in a long line and freeze. We froze for approximately 90 minutes before  getting inside. We got everything we were looking for–some gifts, movies, a Christmas tree, clothes for the Angel Tree child, etc.–but the system was a little too intense this year. They had the front of the store near the cashiers roped off and you couldn’t cross it for anything unless you were checking out, even though they has used some sale items to block it off. Then Anna wanted a video game and she got trapped in a massively long line which was basically for anything electronic–televisions, video games, etc. My original plan was to price match the same printer and blu-ray player Walmart was selling at midnight at Target since we would be there when Walmart’s 12 p.m. sale started. And yes, as long as you have the ad, you can price match on Black Friday. There’s a little tip for you that can come in handy. However, Target didn’t have the exact same items so when we rolled out of Target around 12:45 p.m. we went back to Walmart, picked up the printer and found the very last blu-ray player they had. After that, it was on to the mall. Originally, I had planned on visiting Victoria’s Secret, because they offer some deals and a special gift bag on Black Friday that’s filled with some trial size items and some full size items, like lip gloss. However, the line was crazy long and the deals weren’t that good this year. Plus, they were offering the exact same style bag as last year so I bailed on that. We went next door to Bath and Body Works where I purchased 12 bottles of hand soap, yes 12, it’s the only time of the year I buy them and they’re six for $20. Plus, I picked up a decorative holder that you slip over the bottles. Bath and Body Works was also offering a bag, $20 with a $40 purchase, and it was a much better deal than the Victoria’s Secret one. The bag is really functional and inside it has two smaller bags, a loofah and tons of full size items like hand soap, lotion, body spray, etc. and coupons. On the outside of the bag is hand sanitizer in a little holder. When you add everything up inside, the bag is worth approximately $120. Definitely worth the $20. Plus, on my entire purchase I had a 20 percent off coupon and a $5 free item. Score! After Bath and Body Works, I walked into a few clothing stores, but wasn’t too impressed with the deals so we went and ate some Chic-fil-a, met up with Anna again before she had to work at 3:30 a.m. and headed home. I went to bed sometime after 4 a.m. but the Christmas shopping is basically finished. I need some little things like gift cards, but that’s it. I woke up this morning around 10:30 a.m. and we went out again to a craft store, picked up some groceries at Target and stopped by Walmart to see if they still had one of their doorbusters.  Then we came home and everything is wrapped, the blueray player is hooked up and our Christmas tree is decorated. I’d call that a productive day and because my day started at midnight, I feel like I got a whole extra day out of my weekend. All day I kept thinking it was Saturday. And now I can get ready for Cyber Monday 🙂

326.365

image

Even McDonalds is having a black Friday sale. Well, probably not, but they are feeding the people who are shopping. Hopefully I’m done and on my way home before they even open!

322.365

image

Ron and I went to Old Navy today to take care of some Christmas shopping. Let’s just say it went very well. We got $345 worth of stuff, which is insane I know but there were three pieces of outerwear in there. But, and here’s the kicker, we only paid $132, including tax. We were able to get some Christmas presents out of the way and saved a ton of money. Amazing!!!