Review: Lume Deodorant

Fair warning, there is, within this review, what some people would consider TMI relating to sweatiness and BO. I felt it necessary to provide that information to adequately discuss the changes with and benefits of, Lume. So, you have been warned.

I acknowledge this is a long post, so, if you don’t care about backstory and just want to jump down to the overview, feel free to do so.

Backstory

Growing up, drugstore deodorants were all I had available to me. I switched between them regularly trying to find one that would completely eliminate body odor. In the past, I have tended towards smelly. I said it. If I would sweat even a little, I would smell. Not really bad, like not likely to offend anyone, but I could smell it, and it bothered me.

I was also very annoyed by how difficult those traditional deodorants were to remove. I could scrub until my pits were red and sore and still feel residue. Rather unnerving, really.

Some years ago, I started seeing ads for “natural” deodorants. That was roughly when I started hearing about how bad regular deodorants are. To be honest, I didn’t really believe all of the claims, but I was curious about the natural deodorants. Perhaps they were better.

Turned out, that was a big no. I tried three different ones, which, while much easier to wash off, offered little to no odor protection. So I went back to the drugstore deodorants. They may be annoying, but at least they did their job.

Trying Lume

In January this year, I started seeing Lume ads on Instagram, namely this ad (watch from 0:14 – 0:56) nearly every day. Originally, I didn’t bother to watch the video, assuming it would be more of the same.

However, after seeing the ad a good 8-9 times, I became curious, mostly because of how silly it looked. So, I finally watched it. And it made me curious. The ad mentioned a few things I disliked about drugstore and natural deodorants. So I decided to give it a try. For reference, I bought the Lavender Sage Stick deodorant.

It didn’t get off to a great start. I still smelled, just like I had with the previous deodorants. But about a week after I started using it, I got an email from Lume. In it, they explained that it can take some time to get rid of all the residue from aluminum deodorants, and, that once it was gone, you have to experiment with how much Lume you actually need to apply.

There was also a note about making sure to apply Lume up to an inch beyond the hair growth areas to ensure full odor control.

So, I adjusted my application method and tried different amounts. It took some experimenting, but I finally had an odor free day. Then another. It was a great feeling. And, I found a great side benefit: my clothes weren’t covered in deodorant anymore.

I wanted to immediately jump on here and give you a review, but as i thought about it, I knew i needed to give it a proper test through some hot days.

So I waited. I made it through an entire stick and bought a second before I got a really hot (90°F) day.

I made it through the day with virtually no BO. That, of course, made me excited. Recently, I’ve had several warm and hot days (80+°F). BO has been nearly non-existent, and it’s been so liberating

The Cons

Nothing is ever perfect. Lume has one big con in my eyes, and a couple smaller ones. The main con: you have to rub it in. It’s annoying. I miss having a stick I can just apply on its own.

The lesser cons: it’s expensive, and it’s not an antiperspirant.

Lume is anywhere from nearly double to nearly triple the price of other deodorants. But, it lasts me 3-4 months, depending on just how much I apply. And, if you need an antiperspirant, then Lume probably isn’t for you. It’s a deodorant, it won’t make you sweat any less, it just keeps you from smelling.

With all of the benefits, though, I can deal with these detriments.

The Pros

Because I’ve already covered the pros in my overview, I’ll just list them here as an overview.

  • It virtually eliminates body odor.
  • It’s easy to wash off, and there’s no residue.
  • It doesn’t stain clothes.
  • Shipping is free in the US.
  • It’s long lasting. A single stick lasts me 3+ months.

There’s also an additional potential benefit that I can’t verify yet. I have many shirts that are faded at the armpits, likely from my deodorant. It will be interesting to see if there’s a reduction in fading now that I’ve switched to Lume.

Final Thoughts

Overall, I can’t think of any reason not to try Lume, as long as you don’t need an antiperspirant. I heartily recommend it to anyone. It is, simply put, the best deodorant I’ve ever used.

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Review: Tangle Teezer

I’ve had the Tangle Teezer (TT) for about 4 months now. I’d watched a couple of reviews on YouTube and was intrigued by the idea of something that could detangle my hair without damage.

Of course, I’m well aware that reviews can lie, and I was suitably skeptical. But the TT is inexpensive enough ($11 – $13 on Amazon) to try without being too upset if it didn’t work out.

Because it’s relevant, I have hip-length, colored hair. The bottoms tend toward dry. The hair framing my face is curly, but because of the weight, most of the rest of it is wavy. As far as thickness, my hair is fairly normal. My pony tail is about as big around as a quarter.

When I received the TT for Christmas, I was pretty excited to try it out. I washed my hair, added some leave-in conditioner (as per usual) and picked up the TT.

My first thought: it’s LOUD. It really sounds like you’re ripping your hair out, or tearing through the tangles. BUT, there’s no pulling. None. The TT is so gentle. It doesn’t hurt, doesn’t pull, it barely even tugs.

In terms of technique, it definitely works best when you section hair. I tend to divide my hair into four sections. I like to start at the bottom of my hair and work up.

The TT grips loose hairs, so I’ve found I need to make sure to pull it a bit out from the ends so loose hairs aren’t worked back into the hair being brushed, forming tangles. But if you have shorter hair, it might not be much of an issue. I have noticed, though, as I continue using the TT, that I lose less hair after showers.

It’s worth noting that the TT smooths hair almost like you’re combing through it with a fine-toothed comb. In fact, if I don’t fluff my hair after getting the tangles out, then my curls are severely diminished once my hair dries.

After my first use, I was hooked. Detangling, which typically took me up to 20 minutes, only took 5. And it was completed without pain or breakage.

I think that covers all of the important information. I absolutely recommend the Tangle Teezer. It’s fabulous in so many ways.

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An 18111 Commission

Mid last year, I reached out to Yoshi Nakama of 18111 Pens about commissioning a custom pen. As the DC Pen Show was only a few weeks away, we agreed to discuss it at the show. At the time, I hoped to get a pen themed to my Exalted Bloodlines series.

I eagerly sought him out at the show. However, when I showed him the ideas I had in mind, he warned me it may not be doable.

The designs I showed Mr. Nakama at the DC Pen Show.
Left to right: My design idea for the rollstopper, the blood drop I wanted scattered around the pen, and the moon and star I wanted on the top of the cap.

The proposed roll stopper design, the blood drop I wanted scattered across the pen, and the moon and star I wanted on the top of the cap all have “sharp corners.” Apparently, 3D printing and laser engraving can’t produce sharp corners at that size.

However, I hoped we could reach a compromise with a modified design that I liked and could be executed. I agreed to modify the design before sending Mr. Nakama the files. He warned me that his waiting list was about 3 months long. Granted, considering the year+ waiting lists many pen makers have right now, 3 months is hardly an issue.

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2019 LA Pen Show

The Los Angeles Pen Show was the fourth show location I’ve attended (DC, Baltimore, Philly, and now LA). There were a decent number of tables, but the layout was appalling.

We arrived around 10:30, assuming that would allow us to avoid the opening crush of people we’d heard a lot about.

The exterior line at the LA Pen Show
The half of the line outside…
The interior line at the LA Pen Show
… and the half of the line inside.

Unfortunately, we arrived to find a line that wound down the corridor, out the door, and about half way down the building. Surprisingly, the line moved fairly quickly, but getting into the show was less than half the battle.

An unconsidered side-effect of arriving after the show had started was a lack of street parking. There wasn’t much to start with, but it was all taken by the time we arrived. Parking at the hotel ended up costing us around $20 for the little time we were there. I don’t want to know what people who stayed the whole day paid.

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2019 Philadelphia Pen Show

As I sat down to write my post about the LA Pen Show, I realized I’d never written a post about the Philly show. Therefore, even though it’s over a month late, allow me to share with you my experiences at the Philly show.

We drove up from the DC area with a friend of ours, and, thankfully, there was no real traffic. Upon arriving, I realized how fortunate I am to have the DC and Baltimore shows.

My immediate thought was that the show is overpriced for its size. We paid $13 online (it’s $15 at the door), a single-day price higher than DC, Baltimore, and LA. It’s also smaller than those other three shows.

I will say that the aisles were roomy, on par with Baltimore and far surpassing DC and LA. The selection was fairly evenly dispersed between vintage, new, expensive, and affordable. There was a decent selection of inks. And, for the overall size of the show, a decent number of nibmeisters.

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Ralph Breaks the Internet

I got to see Ralph Breaks the Internet (RBtI) on Sunday. It was a great movie, totally living up to the expectations generated by the first one.

Spoiler-Free Zone

While watching it, I couldn’t help but notice how much social commentary there was within it. I don’t know if I’ve somehow missed it in previous movies, or if it’s just more prominent in RBtI. From Yesss’s words on the internet comment sections, to the way people are represented via their avatars, there are a bunch of eye-opening moments that make you stop and think for a second.

The adult jokes and the self-deprecating humor were other welcome additions that helped make RBtI feel less like a kid’s movie and more like a movie for anyone. I’m really looking forward to watching this one again later.

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Bohemian Rhapsody

I finally got to see Bohemian Rhapsody on Thanksgiving. I loved it. It was a fabulous movie.

I’m not exactly a Queen “fan”. There’s plenty of their music I’ve never heard (proven to me by several songs played during the movie). But I enjoy the music of their I’ve heard, and I’ve watched several Queen/Freddie Mercury documentaries. From those, I know that Bohemian Rhapsody took some artistic license with history, but I suppose that’s to be expected.

However, in my opinion, the movie did a great job of portraying the different sides and evolution of Freddie’s character.

The best part of Bohemian Rhapsody is undoubtedly the Live Aid performance. I had chills throughout the scene. My arm hair was quite literally standing on end the entire time.

My feelings toward the movie may be unique or fairly normal, but I left the theater feeling inspired. I wanted to follow “movie Freddie’s” example of wearing what I like, rather than what I “should”. I wanted to pursue my ambitions, follow my passions, and just be myself, regardless of society’s feelings and expectations.

Here’s hoping that inspiration will last and help me on my journey to become my best, most unadulterated, self.

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Crimes of Grindelwald

I saw Crimes of Grindelwald (CoG) this past Sunday. It was an interesting movie. I liked it enough that I couldn’t find a good place to duck out to the bathroom. TMI, I know, but it makes my point. That said, buckle in, grab a snack, because this one’s going to be long.

Spoiler-Free Zone

I left the theater in shock (for lack of a better word) over some of what was revealed. Hence the delay in this post. I kept turning over everything the movie had thrown at me, and I was left with way more questions than answers.

But now, I’ve processed the movie as much as I can for the moment. There’s a lot I won’t understand or know until future installments, but that’s OK. After all, this is only part 2 of 5. But JK has a lot of explaining to do.

There were far less “fantastic beasts” in this one, which was a bit sad for me, but the Kelpie was absolutely gorgeous, the Zouwu was adorable, and the baby Nifflers were too cute for words and didn’t get enough screen time.

I hope at some point we’ll get the whole story behind the Leta Lestrange/Scamander Brothers relationship, as there’s clearly some major backstory there.

That’s just about everything I have to say that’s spoiler free. If you aren’t OK with spoilers, it’s time for you to stop reading. If, however, you’re OK with them, or have already seen CoG, then click the button below to read the rest of this.

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Troubles with Torrid

I tend not to write about negative experiences if possible, as I prefer to dwell on the positive. However, in this case, it’s more of an annoyance and inconvenience. Also, I hope this post will help other who are considering purchasing from this store.

Until recently, Torrid was my favorite clothing store. I could purchase anything, online or in-store, without having to worry about sizing. The clothes were well-made, so I knew I’d get my money’s worth. And the general look and styles fit my personal preference.

I purchased so much from them that I hit the platinum level of their points system. Torrid was almost the only store I shopped for clothing from.

However, my most recent purchases have been major failures. The fit has been horribly inconsistent, and the quality seems to have gone down a bit. Allow me to share my most recent fit failures. Don’t want to read the backstory? Just jump down to the wrap up.

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Green Nib Update

I mentioned in my 2018 DC Pen Show post that I purchased a green nib from Hinze Pen Company to match my Green Ivies pen from 18111. At the time, I thought I was purchasing an anodized nib. Turns out, it’s lacquered steel, which explains my experience. At the show, I was warned by a few people that colored nibs tend to experience flaking. Sadly, that warning held true for my nib.

I waited a while to write this update, because I was hoping that I could give you a positive result. At first it seemed as though the flaking was minor, and, if it had stayed like that, I could have lived with it.

With the first and second cleaning (both within the first month), a bit of green flaked off either side of the nib slit on the outer edge of the tines. It was noticeable, but it wasn’t really obvious, so I hoped that that would be the end of the flaking, and I’d have a good nib.

However, with the most recent cleaning, I decided to change the color in my pen. I found, as I cleaned it, that the ink was being particularly stubborn. After 10+ minutes of flushing water through it, I decided to pop it in my ultrasonic cleaner.

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