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Customer Reviews: 278
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Heath Buckmaster "_heath_" RSS Feed (Sacramento, CA USA)
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DII 100% Cotton, Machine Washable 5-Piece Everyday Kitchen Basic Dishtowel Set, Includes 4 Dishtowels and 1 Dishcloth, Oversized, Dark Brown
DII 100% Cotton, Machine Washable 5-Piece Everyday Kitchen Basic Dishtowel Set, Includes 4 Dishtowels and 1 Dishcloth, Oversized, Dark Brown
Price: $21.00

4.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful contemporary dishtowel set that holds up to daily use., November 17, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
What makes this set unique from many others that I've seen for sale is that each towel is different. You get five pieces in total, including four larger dish towels and one smaller washcloth. Generally I don't use a "washcloth" in the kitchen, but this one is soft enough that you could just accidentally take it into the bathroom and leave it there for normal use.

Each large towel is a different design, from the more solid brown which matches the washcloth, to the stripes, squares, and circles of the others. They are contemporary in design, and the brown and white colour looks very good in any kitchen.

In terms of these towels holding up to regular use, I've put them through the laundry multiple times (with bleach as well) and the colour has stayed true, and there has been no shrinking or fraying of the material. For me, being able to bleach my kitchen towels is a must - whether the product recommends it or not. Every towel in the house gets bleached so that's one of the primary tests of quality that is important to me.

The softness of the towels also maintains through the wash. I do use a fabric softener sheet sometimes, but I don't use any sort of liquid softener because I don't want residue on kitchen towels. You should have great success keeping these clean with regular use - and based on their durability so far, they should last quite some time.

So for the styling of the product (contemporary, classic, diverse), and the quality of the product (able to hold up to daily use and multiple rounds of washing with bleach), I'm giving this a solid 4 stars.


Pride by Instinct Cheshire's Recipe with Chicken and Chickpeas Dry Cat Food 5.0 lb Bag
Pride by Instinct Cheshire's Recipe with Chicken and Chickpeas Dry Cat Food 5.0 lb Bag
Price: $19.99
3 used & new from $19.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good product. And that's about as far as it goes., November 8, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Here a product I neither like nor dislike. It really does fall somewhere in the middle of the scale.

Gluten Free has become the latest fad, and while I might personally subscribe to it for myself for health reasons, I've never been told by a veterinarian that my cats need to be on a "gluten free" diet vs. what they generally get from their moist and dry food options. What concerns me most is whether the food is easy for them to eat (one is an advanced age), and whether it stays down (that same one also has a very sensitive stomach).

In this case. the product does just that. The small triangular shaped pieces are either for both cats to crunch through and devour - in the middle of the night this is a fun sound to lul me to sleep. The food stays down, and seems to control their breath pretty well vs. moist food that can get a bit funky at times.

But given that the product bills itself as being gluten-free as one of the primary marketing points, I'm still not sure what value that adds to my feline's diet. And that is why I find myself on this median score for the product. The like it. It's fine. But when it comes to cat food I'm not really sure what tips the scale into OH WOW THIS IS AWESOME CAT FOOD.

I have nothing against this product. But there's nothing that puts it ahead of anything else that I've purchased for them. It's a good, middle of the road cat food that I would have no problem buying again if the price is comparable to whatever else I might buy for them.

This is one of those products that should have a veterinarian recommendation for gluten-free diet if I'm going to really pay attention to that element. Otherwise, it's solid, good, and that's where it ends.


Ritz Kitchen Wears Egyptian Cotton Collection 2-Piece Checked Towel Set, Black
Ritz Kitchen Wears Egyptian Cotton Collection 2-Piece Checked Towel Set, Black
Price: $12.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Soft, durable, holds up to repeated washings (with bleach), great absorbancy, October 21, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Whenever I hear the term Egyptian Cotton I'm transported back to the movie The Incredibles. The delightful Edna Mode reminds us that while the super-suit is strong and durable and can withstand a missile attack, it breathes like Egyptian Cotton.

It has the connotation of lux, in every sense of the word. Soft, smooth, gentle to the touch, sensitive, passionate, ok maybe passionate is going too far.

Ritz Kitchen Wear has done a great job of blending style with usability, with that touch of Egyptian lux.

Starting with the design - the stripes bring a contemporary look to any kitchen, with the dark and lighter bands consistently presented across the towel set. The colouration holds up well to regular use as well as regular washing with bleach. I always wash dish towels with bleach for that extra measure of cleanliness and after repeated washings the colours maintain their brightness and consistency.

These are also nice big dish towels. They are great for setting on the side of the cutting board while working with food, as well as actual dish drying if you don't use a dishwasher. They are perfect underneath a hot bowl of chili while sitting on the couch watching your favourite program, and they are soft for use to wipe up any spills you might have. I actually got chili all over one of them, tossed it in the wash, and you could never tell it had been stained with chili.

Overall a solid five stars for this product - because when it comes to kitchen towels the most important thing to me is the ability to use them over and over again and they hold up to harsh conditions (food / liquid / washings). Great product for the contemporary kitchen, and at a good price.


Epson WorkForce WF-2630 All-In-One Wireless Color Printer with Scanner, Copier and Fax
Epson WorkForce WF-2630 All-In-One Wireless Color Printer with Scanner, Copier and Fax
Price: $79.99
15 used & new from $79.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy to install, great print quality, excellent mobile apps, small form factor, great multi-func device, October 6, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Here's my review of the Epson WorkForce WF-2630 All-In-One Wireless Color Printer with Scanner, Copier and Fax.

What's in the box: the multifunction device, power cord, software install CD (not required - you can download the software from epson), quick reference guide, instruction guide, four ink cartridges (black/yellow/magenta/cyan)

First off - there's a LOT of tape holding various pieces and parts together. Once you remove the device from the styro bracers start removing all the tape. It's blue so you'll know exactly what is OK to remove. There's a LOT of it - all across the sides, top, bottom, and even on the inside. You'll also find some styro chips attached to tape that you'll remove too.

Installation is a pretty easy, step-by-step process. Plug the device into power and turn it on. You'll go through a few steps entering data on the screen - setting language, date/time preference, etc. You'll insert the four ink cartridges next. There is one small piece of tape on each - but a warning, you'll see some other plastic coverings on the ink head - do NOT remove those. There is a little graphic on the install guide that warns you about which tape to remove and which to leave in place.

After inserting the four ink cartridges and loading in some paper, the device will do a pretty lengthy setup / test. And this is all before you even plug it into the computer (you can also join it to your wireless network, but I didn't do that in this step).

While the printer was configuring itself / cartridges / etc. I went to the epson.com website and got the latest drivers for the device. You'll find the exact URL on the quick start guide - and in my case, there was also a firmware update available which I'll get to in a minute. Installed the software and followed the on-screen guides to plug in the USB cable and complete the setup. It was at this point it detected that a new version was available and began the download of new firmware. I'd say this whole process took about 10 minutes to complete.

A test page was printed (looked beautiful) and I finished up by registering the device with Epson (it lets you setup a cloud printing registration as well and will give your printer a unique email address if you want to do remote printing). You'll also find links to the Apple and Google Play stores to download the Epson printing app (which I also did).

After the USB link was configured and complete, I used the panel on the front of the device to connect it to my wireless network. Entering the passcode was easy using the numeric keypad - just hit the number as many times as it takes to get to the letter or number you want to enter. It joined the wireless network within about 30 seconds.

Next I opened up the Epson printing app on my Android phone. It searched the home network and immediately found the printer. I ran a quick test to print an image from the phone to the printer and the test was successful. The app also allows you to print a document that you have saved to your phone, from online cloud storage (box, dropbox, evernote, google drive, and microsoft onedrive are the options here), a web page print (you have to load the page in the epson browser first), and you can also trigger a scan on the device from your phone (that's pretty clever but for me, not useful to scan remotely). The app also allows you to check ink status, do maintenance, and reorder ink right from your phone.

Next - scanning. I generally scan from within a graphic program like Paint Shop Pro - you can use a TWAIN driver easily with this device and you'll find scanning up to 2400dpi. I generally scan documents so that's way more than I need - but if you're scanning detailed photographs and images, there you go. Paint Shop Pro had no issue pulling the image in. More importantly - I tested it with my online banking which uses a java applet to connect to a scanner for depositing checks remotely. Worked the first time. Bravo.

Finally a word about design and styling. It doesn't hold a huge amount of paper in the back, and doesn't have native duplexing like you might find in other multi-function devices. I knew that in advance, no big deal to flip the paper around if you need to manually duplex. The styling and design is pleasing. It has a small form-factor and doesn't take up much room on the shelf. However, unlike my last multi-function device which had a paper storage tray underneath, this one is in the back and it's upright. That means you need to account for a little more vertical space in the back if you leave paper in it. Generally I prefer the tray underneath, but oh well.

The display and buttons are easy to use. There's a quick scan/copy button for B&W and Colour, as well as arrow and home keys for the main display. So far I haven't had to use the main display at all once I setup wireless connectivity - I can control it completely from the software on my computer.

I'm going to give the product a solid four stars. The print quality is excellent - both B&W and colour reproduce well on regular paper. Attaching to my home network was a snap, as was installation. The biggest issue was all the blue tape. I'd prefer a different way of loading paper (a tray vs. the slot in the back), and the Android/Apple app is a huge bonus - and works very well without being overdone.

Enjoy!


OXO Good Grips Professional 8-Inch Slicing Knife
OXO Good Grips Professional 8-Inch Slicing Knife
Price: $20.16
10 used & new from $13.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice grip, sharp blade, rocks well on a cutting board, October 5, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There are a few criteria I use for any of my knives...sharpness out of the box, "Rockability" on a cutting board (if purchasing that kind of knife), and ease of holding / grip.

Right out of the box this slicing knife was sharp against tomato without any pulling of the skin. Equally well for apples and garlic. Although I've since sharpened it with a professional tool, it was ready-to-use right out of the box, so for those of you who don't have a sharpening device you will get immediate use from the product. We prefer to sharpen and hone the blades now and then - but your mileage may vary.

Next up - how it behaves on a cutting board. Here are the typical tests I run: smashing and mincing garlic, finely chopping herbs like oregano / thyme / cilantro, and a nice rocking slice of a vegetable like a bell pepper. In all three cases the slicing knife performed well. It was easy to use the center of the blade to smash a garlic clove, then give it a nice mince. The width of the blade doesn't give you too much of a surface for this, so be mindful of that. Chopping a batch of oregano worked just fine. The knife rocked on the cutting board with ease and made quick work of the task. Nice thin slices of bell pepper were also easy to accomplish because the knife doesn't get in the way of itself by being too wide or large.

Finally the grip - it's a squeezy kind of grip, not a firm surface like most professional knives. This didn't really get in my way - it was just different that most of the knives in my collection. The textured grip has some "give" to it when you squeeze it, so for those of you with arthritic hands you might find this knife more comfortable in your grasp.

I don't like to put knives like this in the dishwasher, but it cleans up with warm soapy water and a quick non-abrasive scrub. Hang it on a magnetic knife rack to dry because you may notice that the handle stays a bit moist longer than the blade does. I haven't noticed any moisture absorption to speak of, but it's not a smooth surface that you can just wipe completely dry...so just give it a few minutes and the moisture will evaporate.

Overall a solid 4 stars for usability, form, function.


Miracle-Gro 18978 Enviro-Line Titanium Wavy Blade Hedge Shear
Miracle-Gro 18978 Enviro-Line Titanium Wavy Blade Hedge Shear
Price: $24.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Sharp, effective, and cuts through shrubs with ease., September 27, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There is so much to like about this product, from its design to its durability and easy of use.

Starting from the bottom - the grips are attached to the handles. Unlike my previous shears which had grips that were slid onto the handles, these stay in place, never slipping or sliding out of place while you're working. The texture on the part where your palm is allows you to work with both gloves or bare hands while using the shears. The texture is also very comfortable even after a lot of heavy work.

Moving up the handle you'll notice pretty solid construction. The green-painted metal finish is solid, sturdy, and never feels like it's going to give way while you're working.

On to the cutting blades - it's super easy to adjust and tighten using the very large (a bit too large I think) green dial. I'm not sure the choice of having such a large tightening dial, however, it is VERY easy to use and doesn't require any special tools to adjust. I think that people who may have some arthritis in their hands will find this much more effective than having to find a screwdriver.

The titanium blades are curved/wavy which seems to do very well with ferns, shrubs, grass, and the like. When I have cut larger branches like azalea and butterfly bush, I've tried to align the blades to get maximum pressure - usually down near the base of the blades. My opinion here is that these shears are more suited for the fern/shrub/grass style cutting than for larger branches because of this wavy design.

Up to the tips - I think what you'll like here is that they aren't pointed like many shears. They are rounded at the tips like safety scissors. Although you're going to let kids use this only with supervision, I think it's also great for anyone because of this extra touch of safety. You won't accidentally poke yourself with the sharp point because there isn't one. That right there gets high marks.

The only downside is that there's not an easy way to hang these up on a wall. The handles do have very small openings in them - but not large enough to hang on a nail unless it's a very thin nail. I like to keep my tools hanging on the wall and out of the way, and so I've had to find a very small hook to use. It might have been a better design for one of the handles to have a larger opening for hanging.

Overall - super impressed with the product from the design to the quality of sharpness in the blades. It's a regular use item for the yard. A solid 4 star product.


Kobi Electric K4L8 25-watt (125-Watt) R40 LED 5000k Cool White Indoor Flood Light Bulb, Dimmable
Kobi Electric K4L8 25-watt (125-Watt) R40 LED 5000k Cool White Indoor Flood Light Bulb, Dimmable
Price: $32.00
6 used & new from $27.84

4.0 out of 5 stars Oh my gosh this light bulb is bright!, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Wow! This is one bright bulb! I was expecting a lot of light coverage with a 125-watt comparable bulb, but wasn't prepared for just how bright it is (prior to dimming). If you are looking for an excellent floodlight that you're not going to mess with as a dimmable, you'll be pretty pleased with the coverage this one provides.

The soft filter on the top prevents "direct" light - in other words you're not seeing the LED bulbs individually but more a dome of white. But if you really want to get the best use of the product, put it on a switch that you can dim. Although you can't adjust the colour of this bulb (which would be a great option to have multiple colour settings) you can easily dim it all the way down to a very soft glow.

If you're trying to put this into a regular lamp - it's not going to work. Because of the large and irregular shape you won't find a shade that will fit - so unless you have a lamp that connects the shade in a different way (not directly on the bulb) you'll need to find another place for this.

I have it inside a "tower" style lamp tree and it works beautifully. If I really need to see what's going on, just dim it up, and if you want more ambient lighting, just dim it down. I wasn't able to use this in any of my overhead lights because it's an older house and there just isn't space in the fixture - but for the garage it's perfect. I actually want to get a whole set of these things for use in a variety of light trees in the garage or the laundry room.

Solid 4 stars for a quality built product that works right out of the box - is always cool to the touch - and easily dims down to a very soft glow or a powerful floodlight.


Burt's Bees Brightening Refining Tonic, 6 Fluid Ounces
Burt's Bees Brightening Refining Tonic, 6 Fluid Ounces
Price: $10.71
12 used & new from $5.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another quality product from Burt's Bees - works great with companion lotions / creams for overall skin health, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I'm a long-time fan of the Burt's Bees products, and a regular user of the blemish stick, lip balm, and have also used the rescue ointment on camping trips. Every single product has lived up to expectations and the tonic is no different.

This product isn't a cream like some of the other facial products from BB's. You'll find that the texture/viscosity is more liquid - so make sure you shake the container well before each use because you may experience some in consistency if you don't.

The fragrance gets you first and it's really pleasant. There's a floral hint - and likely from the "daisy extract" - however, I don't really know if it smells exactly like a daisy. The tonic goes on very easily. I generally use this after the shower after patting my face dry. It easily pours into your palm then rub it with your hands and get it all over your face, ears, neck, and don't forget the back of your neck too. Then just wipe with a washcloth. That's the first way to use it.

You can also put it onto a makeup pad and wipe your face with it - think acne pads, that same kind of motion and process all over your face and your neck. This way you can target spots that might need more attention - especially if you have a need to wear makeup for any reason.

My skin has never felt oily after use - and it feels smooth after wiping off the tonic. You might want to pay attention to the fragrance if that's not your thing - this is not an unscented product so just be aware.

I use this product on a regular basis along with the blemish stick, acne lotion/cream. It's an overall great way to maintain healthy looking skin - although for me it's more about regular blemish management than needing to look like I'm glowing ;-).

Enjoy this solid 4 star product from Burt's Bees!


em michelle phan The Everything CC Care, Conceal & Correct Tinted Makeup, Fair
em michelle phan The Everything CC Care, Conceal & Correct Tinted Makeup, Fair
Price: $11.50

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not just for women - a good cover up / sunscreen, but with a powerful and unpleasant smell, September 5, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This product isn't just for women - I regularly need to put on some amount of makeup for television, and being able to combine sunscreen with a coloured concealer was appealing. Here's what I experienced using the product.

Ease of Use: Excellent. The product comes out of the container cleanly onto your fingertip / q-tip / makeup applicator. This particular version is considered "deep" in colour - and I found it to be just a shade darker than my regular skin tone once a thin layer was applied. Putting on more of the product created a shade that started to darken me a bit too much, but in terms of ease - I could adjust the amount of product for the coverage I needed.

Coverup: Good. The product does provide good cover for blemishes, whether incidental or more pronounced. I didn't have any concerns with using it on some minor facial areas that were a bit red. It blended them away with ease and I was able to shade it so it didn't look like I'd put a splotch on my face.

Sunscreen: This is just a bonus for the product - but it's also the primary use of product (see below). If you're outdoors or doing a shoot in the sun, you might as well combine products so you can stay out longer and not worry about a burn. Obviously if you don't use this on your entire face then you're only getting protection on the areas you use it - so for this you need to consider it more than just coverup and use it more broadly.

Removal: Quick and easy with a moist towel or makeup removing cloth. No real problems here.

The smell: Wow. Just wow. I wasn't expecting such an unpleasant and offensive medicinal metallic aroma from the product. My first application was on my entire nose and it was nearly too much to handle. And the smell lingers for a LONG time. There is something in this product that makes it completely unwearable anywhere near your nose. I then tried it on my upper cheeks and again the smell stayed with me. I can understand a product having the scent of makeup, but this went way beyond that into something really unpleasant and irritating. If you are sensitive to makeup scent, I can't recommend this product for you at all.

Finally, this product is billed only as a sunscreen. The active ingredient is titanium dioxide, which you find in lifeguard sunscreen as well. Purpose on the bottle is also listed as sunscreen. You just have the added benefit of it having tint - but that's only a benefit if you want to combine sunscreen with makeup. It's also NOT water resistant, so it's not effective if you're going in the pool or anywhere aquatic.

Overall I can't give this more than 3 stars because it smells so bad it loses most of its value for me. Hopefully some of their other products don't have such an odour that prevents their usefulness.


Mccormick Gluten-Free Taco, 1.25 Ounce (Pack of 12)
Mccormick Gluten-Free Taco, 1.25 Ounce (Pack of 12)

4.0 out of 5 stars A quality, gluten-free product that brings excellent spice to sauces, meats, and more!, August 26, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Let's get started with what's in it, and what's not in it...

First, this product is not dairy-free or sugar-free. You'll find both of these ingredients (the dairy in whey) in the product along with chili pepper, cumin, paprika, oregano, onion, salt, garlic, potato starch, and other natural flavours. There are no wheat products (thus the gluten-free element), but also no soy, corn, or artificial sweeteners.

The product is very easy to use, and I enjoy it with not only a ground beef mix, but also in chili. You can also try this in any tomato-based soup and likely get exceptional results, it really just depends on the type of dish you're going for.

The powder mixture blends easily into a stir fry - I like to brown the meat before adding and then let it really simmer in the mix. For chili it goes right in with the canned and fresh tomato so that it can permeate the entire mix right from the beginning. (You'll find a recipe on the back for a fiesta dip as well as basic meat-based tacos.)

In terms of flavour this is comparable to any standard taco seasoning mix on the market. I don't really notice anything particularly special about it - it's a good and solid flavour and I like it. It's not too spicy, but still packs a nice kick without burning your mouth with heat.

Finally - I'm not sure whether the use of gluten-free is a marketing tool or whether it really makes a difference. You can create your own taco mix with the above mentioned seasonings and adding a gluten element wouldn't change anything at all. Spices are gluten-free naturally...so packaged together you'd expect the same. I'm not a fan of products that would never have gluten to begin with being advertised as gluten-free just for the sake of marketing. But that's more about the packaging, and not the product itself, so take the commentary as you will.

For a solid tasteful and quality product, regardless of the gluten-free aspect, this gets a solid 4 stars. I would like to have seen it without dairy, but I'm glad they didn't use artificial sweeteners or soy products in the making of it.


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