In my line of work, which is often distilled into two boring terms “blogger” and “influencer,” I do get a ton of free product — often unsolicited. Surprisingly, I don’t get as much as I could because very early in my career I quickly began to hate how random knickknacks began to pile up in my storage spaces. That’s not to say I hated everything…I don’t know what I would do without my Dyson or the incredible makeup and shampoos I get. I honestly can’t remember the last time I had to buy shampoo.

But I’m a minimalist at heart, and so this year I decided what better way to express my gratitude to everyone who makes my job possible than to share the fun stuff that comes in the mail! Here were some of the top things I gave away:


Ok, so this definitely didn’t come in the mail — at least not physically. I get a lot of opportunities to try amazing services and had already given this Miraj Hammam signature a go twice. So when I got the opportunity again, I knew someone else would appreciate just as much as I had. Who doesn’t want to experience a relaxing exfoliation in preparation for winter?


I do get things that I want to keep for myself. These TOMS boots were one of them. It just so happened the already generous brand was down to give me a second pair so that I could open up this giveaway to feet of all sizes — no Cinderella hunt for me! I put these boots to a true test last night and did they ever hold up! Unavoidable puddle after unavoidable puddle and my feet were completely dry when I got home.


One of the things I get the most of is, hands down, beauty products. But when Take Good Care reached out to me (via my friend Bryan Brock), I knew I hit the jackpot. There’s no denying how obsessed the beauty industry is with Korean skincare products these days and I was about to get a starter kit with some of the top ones. That’s right, Take Good Care specializes in Korean beauty.

To enter, I simply asked what people’s favorite thing about the holiday was. The answer was so obvious, I was half expecting creative answers. Yet out of the countless of DMs I ended up getting, it was clear no one cared to exaggerate or steer clear of the true meaning for this time of the year.


Everything revolved around spending quality time with loved ones. It was beautiful to see that in spite of the jaded feelings I’ve been having towards social media these last few weeks, core values still reign. A deep appreciation for the general kindness and cheer associated with the holidays also came through. It made me wonder why we couldn’t just smile at a stranger any time of the year. So my next challenge is this: Smile. It might lift someone’s spirits in a way you could never expect.

Last note: Of course, I had a lot more than 12 items to giveaway. The remainder of the stuff I had lying around went into a big bag and straight to Coco & Cowe, who had been collecting donations for its chosen charitable organization, Sistering.