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I’m in my mid-30s… my, erm, later-middle-30s, which means skincare needs to be serious. No more “Oh that smells nice!” or “Oh, I like that packaging!” or “It was on sale!” Late-mid-30s means I need ingredients I know will help me protect and preserve what I still have and help repair what has started to slip. We’re talking the big guns: retinol, collagen, hyaluronic acid.

Advanced Clinicals: A secret skin-care weapon

While you know I love a good trip to Sephora, skincare doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive to be effective, which is one of the reasons I’ve been loving trying out some of the products from Advanced Clinicals. I hadn’t heard of the brand, but I learned a team of cosmetic chemists developed Advanced Clinicals to create affordable and effective formulations using the most advanced technology available. I found all of the things I’m looking for in this collection of skin and body care products: proven skincare ingredients + simple no-frills packaging + a wallet-friendly price.

Advanced Clinicals - affordable anti-aging skin care products

Incorporating Advanced Clinicals products into a skin care routine

I’ll admit it. I felt a little skeptical when I first heard about the brand. How could they have these big name skincare boosters like retinol and AHA and cost only $10-$25? Then I tried them out. I’ve integrated a few Advanced Clinicals products into my beauty routine for the last few weeks, and I’m impressed.

The benefits of Advanced Clinicals serums

Two of my favorite products turned out to be serums: the CoQ10 Wrinkle Defense Serum and the Collagen Instant Plumping Serum. I love how serum tends to absorb quickly and lets you layer on skin-boosting benefits. I’ve been mixing a dropper-full of the CoQ10 and Collagen together and patting them into my skin morning and night. The serums haven’t irritated my skin in any way and have made my skin feel more moisturized and firmer. (Check out all their serums here.)

Advanced Clinicals - affordable anti-aging skin care products

I’ve also been intrigued by their spa-size bottles of powerhouse-ingredients lotions like Hyaluronic Acid Skin Hydrator or Vitamin C Advanced Brighten Cream or Retinol Advanced Firming Cream. To be fair, these key ingredients are not at the top of the product’s ingredient list. But here’s why I still like them: they cost $15 for a whopping 16 ounces of product.

I’m not one to rub a $75 retinol cream onto my chest or the back of my hands. I’m just not going to use it in that way. But a $15 lotion that contains retinol, collagen or vitamin C? No problem! Even if it does have a lower percentage of the product, I’m now putting it on body parts that never dreamed of getting a luxury ingredient like that! (Sorry, back of hands.)


And wait, wait, wait… I just looked and these 16-oz spa sizes are also available at Walmart for — wait for it — $5.99! I’m not surprised to see that some of the varieties are sold out!

From masks and oils, to serums and creams, check all the entire line of Advanced Clinicals products at Now, please excuse me while I go slather my neck with vitamin C.

Win an Advanced Clinicals giveaway

We’re giving away the following to one lucky reader!

1x Retinol Advanced Firming Cream
1x Collagen Skin Rescue Lotion
1x Retinol Anti-Wrinkle Serum
1x Collagen Instant Plumping Serum

You must be at least 18 years old and a U.S. resident to enter and win. All entries will be verified. Winner will be contacted by email via Rafflecopter and must respond within 24 hours.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Advanced Clinicals. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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They say good things come in small packages, but when it comes to the gb Child Pockit Stroller, it’s more like really great things come in itty bitty packages. In case you haven’t heard, the gb Child  Pockit Stroller is the mighty mini that took the baby world by storm when it debuted at last fall’s ABC Kids Expo in Las Vegas. For good reason too, as the Pockit’s innovative design packs the biggest punch in the smallest size.

gb Child Pockit Stroller Giveaway on Savvy Sassy Moms
Smaller is better

The gb Child Pockit Stroller holds the Guinness World Record for the most compact stroller as of 2014. This full-size umbrella stroller collapses down to a tiny 11.8” x 7” x 12.3” or small enough to fit under the airline seat in front of you or in a good sized tote bag. Yes, it is actually that small. It also weighs a little over 9 pounds, but will accommodate a child from 6-months-old and up to 55 pounds, so in no way are you sacrificing form or function for the small footprint.

The test

I decided to go cold turkey and strictly use the Pockit Stroller as my everyday stroller to see if I could really use something so small as more than just a travel stroller. The answer was yes… and no.

First things first, even the box comes in is impressive — it’s just a small cube with a handle and it’s hard not to wonder if you’re going to be putting together a bunch of tiny pieces all night. However, gb Child has this handled as the Pockit comes fully assembled. Yes, you read that right. You don’t even so much as have to snap on a wheel — it’s all done for you.

I did, unfortunately, have trouble once I actually got it out of the box. As I looked around for instructions, a label, anything, and found none, I was left going “Now what?” and proceeded to violently shake it for a good five minutes before I took to the internet to tell me what I was doing wrong. The initial unfolding of the stroller takes some finesse, but once you’ve got it figured out I can honestly say it’s the easiest setup I’ve ever seen in a stroller. You essentially just hang on to the handles, kick it out and — boom — it’s suddenly there and ready to go.

Six year old on the left with plenty of room and baby on the right perfectly comfy.

Once we were out and about, I was actually pleasantly surprised at how sturdy it felt with its aluminum frame. Now I’m not going to say it’s heavy-duty or on-par with luxury umbrella strollers, but it doesn’t feel flimsy at all and although not true one-handed-steering capable, I did find it was super easy to maneuver in and out of doors and the handle height was just perfect (for me at 5’4”). If you are on the taller side you might want to test this one out before you buy. The wheels are on the smaller size and they are plastic so it’s not the smoothest ride and probably would not be the best on extremely rough terrain, but the front swivel wheels do lock so you have the option, if need be, as well as a rear-wheel brake. The cargo basket is a good size for how small the stroller is and will hold up to 11 pounds. There is also a height adjustable 5-point harness with padding on the crotch and shoulders and the fabric is wipeable and fully removable for washing.

Now, lets talk about the uber impressive fold, because that’s really the star of the show here. There are actually two ways to fold this stroller: small and smaller. The difference is whether you tuck in the rear wheels or not. I found, for the most part, I left the rear wheels down because it’s easier to fold that way, but it’s nice to have the option. The actual folding process takes two steps and a little bit of practice, because there seems to be an art to it but again, once you’ve mastered it it’s pretty great.

The sacrifice

With the small size comes some things you’re going to sacrifice, but remember this is mostly marketed for travel and when you’re traveling you can just about deal with anything. First off, no cup holder or snack tray or caddy of any sort. Second, there is no recline on this stroller at all, which is a bummer, but not unheard of in the umbrella stroller category. And lastly, the shade that flips over to cover your child is really, really small, unfortunately.

 The bottom line

If you’re an urban mom who’s in and out of public transportation, or the jet setter who is constantly traveling with your children, then this will be a great go-to stroller for your kiddo. But, if you’re more suburban with room to spare in the trunk of your car, or the type to want bells and whistles when it comes to your travel stroller, then the Pockit probably won’t be your first choice. However, as far as the super compact travel stroller market goes, this one is relatively low on the price point scale and is a great quality stroller so even if you use it just for those trips now and then, you will definitely get your moneys worth with the gb Child Pockit.

Visit our #SummerScoop4Moms giveaway to find our Pockit Stroller giveaway, along with over $2000 of other prizes!
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BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light

Travel Must-Have: BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light

Anyone traveling with a baby or toddler has faced the challenge of figuring out where your child is going to sleep while you’re away from home. Portable play yards are heavy and bulky, renting a full-size crib is expensive and takes up a ton of space, and sleeping in the same bed with your baby comes with a whole other set of issues. Thankfully, we found the perfect solution to our sleep dilemma with the BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light.

BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light

Lightweight and comfortable

The BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light is exactly what it sounds like — a very lightweight crib that’s easy to travel with. The whole thing packed up only weighs around 13 pounds (which is much lighter than the baby) and is smaller than a suitcase, so it’s easy to take on a plane or put in the trunk of a car. The crib is made with breathable mesh sides so you don’t have to worry about babies that like to snuggle into the side of a crib. The mattress pad is surprisingly thick, sturdy and comfortable — plenty of padding for a peaceful sleep that rests on the ground, so no cross-bars or support beams digging into your baby’s back (like our old play yard). The mattress cover is machine washable, but BABYBJÖRN also offers a really nice cotton fitted sheet that fits the mattress (sold separately).

BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light

Quick and easy assembly

The crib comes in two pieces: a fully-assembled frame (just unfold the legs) and the thick mattress pad. It takes less than a minute to set the whole thing up and is just as easy to disassemble when it’s time to pack up and head home. The frame and mattress fold together and fit nicely in the included travel bag. There are no pieces to assemble, no loose parts to worry about losing and no snaps, clasps or buttons to mess with. Couldn’t be easier.

BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light Sturdy and durable

The mattress pad is thick with a built-in base plate that makes the crib very sturdy. The crib sits directly on the ground and the legs are angled outwards so it won’t tip over, even if your baby is leaning heavily on the side or your preschooler is doing headstands in the corner of it. The sides are high enough that even a tall toddler can’t climb out, which gives moms with curious kids a little extra peace of mind. It’s the perfect place for your baby to play safely during the day and is light and easy to move around the house or outside.

BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light

Sweet dreams

But the true test of any crib is whether or not your baby sleeps well in it. This one is a winner for us. Baby took three hour-long naps and slept through the night safe and soundly. Now if I could only get her to sleep like that when we’re at home! She had plenty of room to move around, which means that we’ll be getting a lot of use out of this crib over the next couple years.

BABYBJÖRN Travel Crib Light


Be sure to check out all the amazing products from BABYBJÖRN that make traveling (and life in general!) with kids safe and easy. You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

This post was contributed by Sara McCarty, who is part of the Savvy Sassy Moms Product Scout program. Sara blogs about her kids and adventures being a lawyer-mom at Running From the Law

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The HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper

I never had the opportunity to use a bassinet when I had my first daughter, Audrey, since at eight pounds eleven ounces and twenty-two and half inches, you could say I gave birth to a toddler. So needless to say she went from bassinet to crib within the first two weeks. Since I am set to have our newest little bundle almost two weeks early via c-section (due to complications) I’m really excited to have a bassinet as an option this time around and share my HALO Bassinest review with you!

First off, I had heard before how surprisingly heavy this was but not until I saw the look on the poor FedEx guy’s face did it really hit me, so FYI, it’s VERY heavy.

HALO Bassinest

Assembling the HALO Bassinest

I decided to put it together myself just to see if someone eight months pregnant could do it, and really, it was VERY easy. In all my life of assembling everything from IKEA to kids toys did I ever see a product as well packaged as this bassinet. I would not worry about having this shipped anywhere to anyone, it was actually pretty impressive. The only thing I really needed help with was moving it from my dining room to the bed room since, like I said, it’s very heavy. My husband, who was my outstanding assistant and photographer, made a good point stating that the added weight makes it incredibly sturdy. And with a curious four year old and German shepherd I won’t have to worry about it tipping in the slightest.

halo bassinest

After assembly I started playing with the features and noticed that although the sidewall goes down it doesn’t stay down like I had previously thought. It pops back up as soon as you let go. Also, initially its kind of hard to push down, I thought I was breaking it or forcing it to go down and had to re-read the instructions to make sure I was doing it right. (Reading instructions, go figure, right?) However, the more I messed with it the more it loosened up. Although, I have to say, I think I would prefer it if it went down and stayed down, but we will see if that opinion changes after the baby comes. I could be completely wrong.

halo bassinest

The HALO Bassinest Style and Features

I really love the fabric and the pattern; it’s gender neutral, fits in well with my décor and doesn’t stand out as a “baby product” which is the worst. The padding is plush but firm without being overly soft or dangerous. And the swivel itself gives many options for placement next the bed. The music is quiet so I won’t have to worry about waking my husband from a sound sleep when I use it, same with the two levels of vibration. In addition there are two brightness levels on the lights which I know will be incredibly handy. I’m curious to see how the nursing timer will work when that time comes, but if it does work I think something like would be so smart.

Lastly, it does not come with a separate removable sheet but the pad itself is made from it own patterned polyester sheet material, which can be used on it’s own or with an additional sheet (as shown in the photos). But keep in mind that not any regular bassinet sheet will work. Because of the specific “figure eight” shape of the padding, a regular bassinet sheet would be too loose around the sides so they recommend you buy the sheet made specifically for the Bassinest. (Don’t worry, the price is comparable to regular bassinet sheets. I checked.)

We thought we had plenty of time but turns out Baby Abbey had other ideas and showed up four weeks early on January 28th at 10:57AM. Since she arrived due to complications, and via c-section, I found the Bassinest to be even more G-E-N-I-U-S than I imagined. Getting in and out of bed was more that just slightly painful (and even now, two weeks from delivery I’m still in pain) so just being able to pull her close to me with one hand so I can sooth her or pick her up was extremely helpful. Not to mention the ease of pushing it out of the way when I needed to get out of bed.

halo bassinest abbey

As it turns out the fold down side is helpful, but like I first thought, I wish it would stay down at times. When you can’t use your stomach muscles it’s hard to push down and grab baby at time same time. But like I thought it would, the sidewall has loosened up a bit making it easier to grab and transition, a definite plus.

halo bassinest

The control panel on the HALO Bassinest is clearly laid out and I love the light that has two settings. Bright but not bright enough to blind the baby but still able to see when sneaking in and out of the room. The only thing I would change is if the panel itself was backlit somehow. When you’re blurry and cross-eyed from lack of sleep you end up hitting all the buttons trying to find the vibrate and the next thing you know you’ve got lights and music and now you can’t figure out how to turn them off.

halo bassinest

In the end, Abbey and I highly recommend this bassinet if you’re in the market. The quality, size, and features make this one a must have for any new mother. It’s all the benefits of co-sleeping without any of the risk in a modern, high-tech and stylish package.  It’s the best of both worlds.

Did you use a Bassinet with your babies?

Are you looking for a bassinet? Was this review helpful?


 Disclosure: I was sent a HALO Bassinest for review. All my thoughts and opinions are my very own.

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This giveaway has ended: Enter the NEW Skip Hop Diaper Bag HERE!


I consider myself a stylish person. I love keeping up with fashion trends and my motto in life is “How you look is half the battle!” Therefore it should come as no shock that I plan on being a stylish mommy, as well. I know what I like, and I don’t want to sacrifice my taste for anything, including — no, especially — a diaper bag. Luckily for me, this diaper bag exists! I love the sleek look of the black bag with gold detailing, and the best part is that you can’t even tell that it’s a “diaper bag” — it just looks like a super cute oversized purse! It is exactly what I have been envisioning my diaper bag to be, and I couldn’t be happier with it. Now I just can’t wait to try it out with an actual baby, but for the sake of this review, I have been wearing it around as my regular purse.

Wondering what Katie keeps in her bag? Here’s a peek inside at her stash of must-have diaper bag items!

skip hop diaper bag

The Chelsea Downtown Chic, Skip Hop Diaper Bag

skiphop diaper bag 1

A few things to note: It is super cute and goes with literally every outfit. It is extremely roomy, which is of course the most important thing with a diaper bag! It will fit diapers, wet wipes, extra clothes, burp rags, chapstick, mommy’s compact mirror, a bottle, and a toy with room to spare! Trust me, I tried this out already. You know, one can never be too prepared! I love that the bag comes with a little changing pad that fits perfectly inside, for quick changes when you’re on-the-go!

skiphop diaper bag 2

skiphop diaper bag 3

skiphop diaper bag 4

I love this diaper bag. Just remember, mamas and mamas-to-be, you do not have to sacrifice style after having a baby! I am so excited to start using this bag for what its actual purpose is, and to start hunting for more fashionable baby gear and items.

Looking for more great options? We have you covered with these 7 stylish diaper bag under $100.

ENTER the NEW Skip Hop Diaper bag Giveaway


Win the Chelsea Downtown Chic — Skip Hop Diaper Bag!
Please enter through the Rafflecopter form below.

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Joovy Groove Ultralight

As a mom constantly on the go, I just can’t afford to drag around a heavy stroller for my boys. I’m a die-hard umbrella stroller lover. I like that I can open it with one hand while the other is grabbing the baby that just ran away (yes, I see you shaking your head as you picture this scene from your own life). I like that I can carry the stroller under one arm, and a bag and baby in the other, but your basic umbrella stroller has some draw backs. That’s where the Joovy Groove Ultralight comes in.

This sexy little lady is five pounds lighter than its big sister, making it an easier stroller to travel with and explore new lands… or just the farmers market down the street.

Here’s the dirt on the Joovy Ultralight Groove

• Stroller Weight: 12.78 pounds
• Stroller Dimensions Folded (inches): 12.5 H x 13 W x 40 D
• Stroller Dimensions Assembled: 40.75 H x 21 W x 33.5 D
• Min.Age: 3 Months / Max.Weight: 55 pounds
• Safety features: Five-point harness and reflective safety package
• Colors: Blueberry (as pictured), Purpleness, Triple Black and Charcoal

Joovy Groove Ultralight

Stash your stuff

Storage is what you sacrifice when you go for the cheap umbrella stroller. When you are constantly on the go you need a spot to stash your purse, an extra bag of snacks, loose toys, lovies and that left shoe that the baby keeps throwing into the street. You also need to give your back a break. The Joovy Groove Ultralight has enough space to stick all of your kids stuff plus a large purse, diaper bag or camera bag. I even managed to throw the kids’ coats in the storage below the stroller with my Big Buddha purse.

Joovy Groove Ultralight

Nighty-night baby

With your standard umbrella stroller you also lose the ability to recline your tired baby or toddler. This has come to bite me in the bum more than once. The Joovy easily reclines up to 149 degrees with the pull of a tab. The adjustable leg support means even longer babies can relax without their feet falling over the edge. An oversize canopy will block the sun allowing your little bundle of joy to snuggle up without any bright lights blinding him or her as you move about town.

Stand up straight woman!

If you are a savvy mama of a taller stature, you know how hard it is to find a stroller with handlebars high enough that you don’t have to slouch while you walk to reach them. The aerodynamic design of the Joovy handlebars lets you stand tall while you shop and explore the city. The two separate handlebars also make it easier to maneuver your stroller one handed.

Joovy Groove Ultralight

Getting ahead of the curve

One last drawback of your standard umbrella stroller is the wheels. The tred isn’t very good and you can’t cut those corners very easily. Joovy’s wheels spin around allowing you to tackle those tough curves, even one-handed. You can steer around tight spots, avoid pedestrians cutting you off and sprint to catch the train. The handling on uneven ground is similar to other non-jogger strollers. Without heavy-duty wheels you are bound to hit a few bumps in the road, but you won’t be any worse for wear.

Joovy Groove Ultralight

Let’s wrap it up

There is only one spot that your basic umbrella stroller will have the Joovy beat, but not for long with a little practice. Your basic stroller is easier to open and close one-handed, and tuck under your arm. The way to conquer this is to try opening and closing it at home a few times. The auto fold lock is great, but you will need both hands to unlock the stroller until you get the hang of it. You will also have to unlock the wheels before you start rolling, which you can do with your foot.

Closing the stroller also takes a flick of your foot, but you need to do it in two spots — the most obvious being the step tab in the back, but I found I also had to wiggle my foot to the side to make the mental frame collapse all the way. I could still do all this with a baby in one arm, but not as easily. I have a few more test runs to do before I’ve perfected my technique.

What do you think makes the ultimate travel stroller?

Disclaimer: I was sent the Joovy Groove Ultralight for review. The above is my own savvy sassy opinion

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When you’re pregnant for the first time, you start hearing all kinds of stories from your friends or other moms about what happens to your body and how you should prepare for this or that.  You hear about tips on how you should sleep when the baby sleeps and all it continues throughout the first year on pretty much anything and everything.  

In all the advice I was given there was little tidbit of information that I never really heard!  That right about when your child is 3-4 month, right when you’re starting to feel yourself again and wanting to dress up a bit, your outfit will never be complete!  It is right about that time you will stop wearing jewelry!  Earrings?  Necklaces?  Yep, they are all gone!  As soon as that sweet baby is able to grasp, the sparkly draws them straight in!  Necklaces will be broken, earnings ripped from your ears.  I’ve been going to work for months now and realize once i’m there that my outfit could totally use a good necklace or bracelet.  BOOO!

I heard about this company out of the UK called Mama Jewels.  They make all kinds of cute jewelry that:

  • Baby-proof
  • Non-toxic
  • Washable (For when baby chews on it)
  • Good quality and strong!

I need to put this to the test for sure!

Picked out a cute necklace and viola a few days later they had send me a sweet little package on my doorstep.  I open it up and was excited to put it on.  It took about 3.2 seconds when this happened:

Necklace in tiny hand and straight into the mouth!
Of course, I quickly grab the camera to document how it was fully put to the test.  And it passed with flying colors.  Its very durable and and cute all at the same time!  All you can ask for as a Sassy Mom!

I highly recommend checking out Mama Jewels selection.  Now your outfits will be complete without the worry of them breaking or them getting ripped out of your ears!

P.S.  I did receive the necklace for free, but all thoughts and opinions are my own

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Congratulations to Addison she won the Diaper bag & A + D Ointment Giveaway!
Her 3 words to descirbe the first year of motherhood….Unexpected, adventurous, priceless 

There is nothing worse than red irritated little buns.  Been making mom’s cringe for centuries.
Recently, this adorable little man woke up with his own case of red irritated little buns, and I tried another name brand products on him with no luck.  During the next diaper change, I applied A+D Ointment and whoala, red buns no more!  What mom doesn’t like that?
Added bonus, its goes on super smooth and not caked on your hand and fingers when you’re finished applying it.
If you’re looking for a diaper cream that will do the trick, I highly recommend A+D ointment to treat it.
What may not be widely known is that A+D also has a “Preventative” Ointment as well.  Did you know that it can be applied at each diaper change to help prevent diaper rash?  Umm… love that!  Also, it can be used on all kinds of other things like minor cuts, scrapes and soars.  It is made up of vitamins A and vitamin D… (go figured with a name like “A+D”) and definitely does the trick!  Always good to have some on hand!
Diaper Bag filled with goodies and A & D Ointment Giveaway!

A Fleurville BabyCenter branded diaper bag filled with prizes including:
Two tubes of A&D Cream
Swaddle Designs Receiving Blanket and Baby Burpies
BabyCenter book on Baby’s First Year
Bebe Au Lait Nursing Covers
Diapees & Wipees
To Enter:
1. Comment Below: Describe your first year as a Mom in 3 words!
Extra Entries…
2. Share this giveaway on Twitter
“I want to win a diaper bag filled with goodies from @savvysassymoms “
or Share this Link on Facebook:
3. “LIKE” Savvy Sassy Moms on Facebook
4. Subscribe to the Savvy Sassy Newsletter
Disclosure: This post is a sponsored post in conjunction with the BabyCenter Blog Network. All savvy thoughts and sassy opinions are my own.

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