Monthly Archives: October 2017

Gold Wedding Bands Shopping

Gold wedding bands are a significant part of any marriage ceremony. Bride and groom come together during this special occasion to celebrate the ultimate commitment between two people. For grooms, a ring symbolizes their part in this desired obligation. Men’s wedding jewelry have become big business, catering to the two million plus marriages performed yearly in the U.S. As the design advances, with the rapid advancement of online retailers, consumers find themselves with a greater selection of products, ranging in color, style, fit and design. With all these choices, consumers should consider a few important points before buying a ring online, as detailed in this shopping guide.

The most important factor in selecting a band is personal taste. There are so many styles of including Celtic, two tone, flat to, milgrain and, of course, plain polished. These categories can be broken down further into a myriad of styles and designs. The question then becomes, what captures your eye? Do you prefer fancy cut style with faceted edges and patterns, or perhaps handmade designs which represent a certain detailed quality and uniqueness? You can also buy rings fitted with diamonds. Diamond bands combine the sleekness of gold with the excitement of sparkling diamonds.

In general, white gold rings are more popular than yellow gold. In particular, plain comfort fit is the standard. Simple and elegant, plain comfort fit gold wedding bands are more traditional in nature. As done by many a groom, you might consider engraving your piece to reflect the name of your bride or some memorable message. The variety of styles and designs are a great comfort to those who are looking to find that uniquely representative look and feel. Once you have established the desired look, you can then move on to verifying the security of the online retailer you are potentially buying from.

There are several points of verification you can look for in establishing that a site selling high end merchandise is reputable. First, look for a current secure socket layer (SSL) certificate, as issued by a Certified Authority such as Godaddy, Verisign, etc. This means the site you are buying from is trusted, and the information being transferred from you to the site is encrypted and secure from third party attacks. Secondly, look for membership in a reviewable consumer group such as the Better Business Bureau. Look here for complaints and disputes from previous customers. Thirdly, study the warranty for their items. What is the exchange/refund period? Is there an extended warranty available? Most reputable sites will give you at least 30 days to return your gold wedding bands. Carefully study the conditions under which returns are accepted, looking for anything unusual, like sky high restocking fees, as compared to other sites. Finally, study the customer reviews and testimonials from others who have bought similar items from the same online retailer. A great test of an online retailer is simply to call their customer service line. Are their representatives professional and willing to answer your questions? Compare your findings with other sites, selling similar bands and you should be able to pin down which online retailers are secure, authentic and ethical.

Price is the final factor in considering the purchase of wedding ring. Study competitive retailers by searching terms that are related to the items you are looking for. Look at the weight of the items and compare prices with other sites. Reputable resellers of gold merchandise often have a variety of designs and styles covering various prices ranges and willing display detailed information about each item. Are there amenities included in the purchase, such as gift boxes, and expedited shipping? Diamond band rings may be the most difficult to price. Diamonds require judgment in several areas including cut, clarity and color and carat referred to as the four C’s. Research the four C’s, educating your self to identify quality diamonds. Once you are done you can feel comfortable making a purchase as this process will ensure that you have found a reputable source for all of your gold wedding jewelry.

Definitive Shopping Guide

If you have larger than normal feet, you know how difficult and frustrating it can be to find shoes that fit. Manufacturers are more interested in creating shoes in common sizes so that they can get the biggest return possible. In the past, this meant that people with larger feet were reduced to shopping at specialty stores for styles made from companies that only made big shoes and not other sizes. The selection was often limited, and the styles not as fashionable as the shoes on the high street. Luckily there are more options available today for people with big feet. Here is the definitive shopping guide for finding stylish shoes that fit your feet.

Styles
Today most major manufacturers create shoes in a range of sizes, from very tiny sizes up to the large sizes that fit big feet. One style that always comes in all sizes are trainers. There are a great range of different types of trainers you will be able to find in your size, from high-tech athletic trainers to the colourful, street trainers that look good with jeans. Dress shoes are a bit harder to find in big sizes, especially larger sized heels for women. When shopping around, remember to look for you size but also keep in mind the width of the shoe. Some companies create large sizes but don’t take into account the extra width of your foot, so you could end up with a shoe that pinches the sides of your feet.

Where to Shop
It used to be that people with large feet could only find good fitting shoes at “big and tall” stores. These shops are still around and are a good option for people who have feet that are both wide and long and therefore really hard to fit. However, you won’t find contemporary, fashionable shoes at these stores. To get shoes that are more on trend with the season, you could consider looking at department stores and asking about larger sizes. Most big stores will stock at least a few big sizes in each style to have on hand. The final and best option is to shop around online. You can go to online shops, auction sites and websites that offer overstocked shoes from various stores to find great deals on stylish shoes.

Buying Shoes
When you decide to shop online, make sure you have the right size. Different countries have different sizing charts, so it’s important to check that you are purchasing your shoes in the right country and corresponding size. Sizes also tend to vary slightly among different manufacturers. In order to get the exact right fit, it is a good idea to visit the manufacturer’s website to take a look at their specific sizing chart. Once you start looking around online, you’ll be amazed at just how large the selection of shoes is that will fit your feet.

The Benefits of Having a Shopping

Today, with economic challenges that do not seem to end, it is hard not be critical and careful with the purchases that we make, whether it is a bar of soap, a new pair of jeans, or a ticket for two to Hawaii. There is no room for an impulsive shopper here in the 21st century, unless you have a reservoir of cash for “emergencies”, when you have swiped your credit card a little too often. Thus, having a shopping guide is important to help you stay on track with what you should buy and what you should not.

The benefits of having a shopping guide can be broken down into three parts. First, it can help you feel like you are making a well-informed consumer decision. Unlike a product recommendation or a review, a shopping guide works like a map that helps you navigate your way in the complicated consumer’s world. If you need to look for a baking oven to replace your old one, a guide about the best baking ovens on the market can help you receive more value for your money. Also, by having a guide that you can refer to when buying clothes, you have a resource that can help you find establishments that offers their merchandise at great prices.

The second benefit of a shopping guide is that it lets you know where to go when looking for a certain item or to avail a particular service. For instance, if you have a shopping guide of the mall that you are visiting, you will know exactly where the home appliances are, or on what floor apparel for women is located. It saves you from possibly getting lost inside a mall, or looking for a particular store that does not exist in that particular outlet. Most guides are available at mall entrances, especially if it is new. It can also be downloaded and printed for free if the mall happens to have a website.

Third, a guide helps you get rid of distractions, allowing you to focus on the item that you want to buy. Most guides are not only packed with navigational details, but also product reviews and recommendations that can help you make informed decisions. It is for this reason that shopping guides are produced in thick brochures and pamphlets; they are packed with useful information for the stressed-out shopper.

Aside from a guide that you can bring with you, such as those printed in brochures and pamphlets, there are also many websites that can function as shopping guides for the dazed online shopper. Make sure that, when referring to online guides, the website that you are browsing through is an authority in the industry. Verify its list of contributors and writers to guarantee peace of mind.

Green Shopping Guide

When I was in my twenties and thirties, I was a school teacher. I lived and worked overseas. I had many great adventures, but looking back two decades later, I can see that what I most enjoyed about those years was the lifestyle I had as a young mom in my neighborhood in Adelaide, South Australia. We enjoyed the best of a modern Western life without some of the “excesses” of 21st century life in the United States-not too much driving, not too much “stuff”, not too much debt…You get the picture. I had a cute little car which was fuel efficient. I had a cute little house and lovely English style garden. I shopped in my neighborhood, because, believe it or not, there wasn’t a supermarket or mall within 5 miles of the neighborhood where I lived.

What I loved most about how my money was spent in those days was that it mainly supported local people and products. My food came from small, family-owned fruit and veggie shops, butcher shops, and bakeries. All of my fruit and vegetables were grown locally and sold in the shops in my local “high street” or in the year-round farmers’ market. Many things I take for granted today like my washer and dryer, my living room furniture and my office equipment were far more expensive in Adelaide than they were in Seattle, for instance. But, we purchased from local merchants, bought quality to last and often recycled and shared. For months when my neighbor had a new baby, we shared the expense of a diaper service and we shared the use of my new washing machine. When another neighbor moved to a new job in another state, we bought their antique dining table and chairs to furnish our cottage’s kitchen dining area.

So, why am I telling you this story of a past life in another country?

Because–I think we have forgotten that we have the power to shape our lives with the choices we make and how we spend our money. I suppose we think we have to give up things we find “necessary” to save our environment, when really we might find that new choices result in pleasant gains.

At the heart of many of our environmental challenges today are the things we Americans buy and discard every day. Our economy is seemingly stronger the more we buy and the faster we replace things. Living a more environmentally aware lifestyle affects all aspects of our lives, but none more dramatically than our shopping habits.

There are many ways to turn your buying behavior into a force that supports environmentally friendly businesses and practices:

Choose the shop around the corner:

More and more, we’re hearing that carbon dioxide emissions from our cars are polluting the earth and contributing enormous quantities of greenhouse gases to the growing climate change problem. To reduce your carbon footprint, choose to shop close to home. Need some new candles? Check out the local artisan’s workshop. Looking for some fresh veggies? Look into your community’s farmers’ markets. You get the idea.

BYOB:

By that, we mean “bring your own bag” when you’re heading for the store. Whether you’re in the market for groceries or a new pair of pants, try to remember to take your reusable shopping bag with you. This cuts down on the annoying “paper or plastic?” questions and will mean fewer resource-intensive bags entering your community where they either need to be discarded in a landfill or burned in an incinerator.

Choose eco-friendly products:

Regardless of what you’re putting in your bag, whether it’s a new printer for your computer or some binders for your children’s new school year, there’s likely a more eco-friendly option available. Wondering what to look for? Here are few characteristics of earth-mindful options:

  • Look for second-hand or used items. These products require no new resources except the gas it takes you to get to the store. Furniture, clothing, kitchen items, and even electronics can often be purchased this way.
  • Search for items made with recycled materials. The most obvious option is recycled-content paper, but more and more there are products made of recycled products. Soda bottles can be made into fleece for clothing, tires can be turned into playground equipment, milk jugs can be turned into shingles for your roof, yogurt containers are made into toothbrushes and razors, and old barn wood can be transformed into one-of-a-kind tables and chairs.
  • Check out alternative materials. If you can’t find something that’s once-used like those that are second-hand or made of recycled materials, look for options made with eco-friendly materials. This can mean many things, but here are a few principles to keep in mind: Materials grown without the use of pesticides and fertilizers mean less harm to water and soil, so go for organic fruits, vegetables, and cotton products. Any resource that’s renewable is more sustainable than non-renewable options. Metals, plastics, and other petroleum by-products are not ultimately renewable (not to mention they’re production is incredibly polluting). Bamboo, hemp, sea grass, and jute, to name a few, are incredibly fast growing plants that can be used to construct furniture and rugs, clothing and bedding, and much more. Opting for the item made with fewer chemicals is always a good choice, too. It means it’ll be less harmful for you and the earth. So if you’re debating between stain-resistant shirts and those without, go for the more natural, less-treated option. Look for low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) products, natural cleaning products, and so on.

Choose “kid safe” and “pet safe” household products.

Opting for the item made with fewer harmful or potentially harmful ingredients is not only earth-friendly, but also “kid safe” and “pet safe”. Look for household products without the following common but harmful chemicals as ingredients: Naphthalene, kerosene, formaldehyde, phenol, cresol, lye, hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, petroleum distillates, benzene, ammonia, paradichlorobenzene, sodium hydroxide, butyl cellosolve, hydrochloric acid, phosphoric acid.

Look for concentrated products:

Every bottle of laundry detergent and household cleaner that contains more water than active ingredients cost fuel and human labor to ship to a store near you. Purchase your household products as concentrates and add the water at home.

Look for water- and energy-saving devices:

Choosing products that reduce your consumption of water and energy will not only save you money, they reduce your overall earthly-impact. So go for bathroom and kitchen fixtures and appliances that conserve, opt for electronics that run more efficiently, and upgrade things like light bulbs and faucet aerators to keep your home running on less. A good bet for many of these products are ENERGY STAR rated options since they save significant quantities of both of these resources.

Reduce overall consumption:

Perhaps the most important change you can make in your shopping habits is to buy less. When you’re in the store trying to decide between two great books, or contemplating whether you want green or white sheets, evaluate whether you really need the item in question. Are there ways you can reuse something at home for that purpose? Perhaps you can share a lawnmower with your neighbor, or take books out of the library instead of buying new. There are lots of ways to enjoy the better things in life without taking something new home.

Plastic Containers Shopping Guide

Almost every household has plastic containers. They could be used for storing foods or other smaller items to promote organization in the house. However, do you know that some plastics are not really recyclable than the others? Do you use plastic containers that are safe for living? Check out the shopping guide below before you decide to buy plastic containers.

First of all, you need to know the different types of plastic. Plastics are put into categories based on their resin identification code. If you buy something made of plastic, you usually can see this resin identification code on the bottom of the plastic container. It normally comes with a recycling triangle logo that indicates a number in the middle. This number is the one you should be paying attention for.

Number 1 means Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET/PETE). You find this kind of plastic in plastic bottles or disposable soft drinks. When you buy one of those, make sure you dispose it after the first time use. PET is hard to clean and it absorbs and keeps bacteria and flavors.

Number 2 means High Density Polyethylene (HDPE). You can find it in jugs and liquid detergent bottles. HDPE doesn’t transmit known chemicals to your food and normally the municipal recycling program accepts it.

Number 3 means Polyvinyl Chloride (V or PVC). It can normally be found in plumbing pipes, cooking oil bottles and meat wrap. PVC contains phthalates – a sort of softeners – that mess up with hormonal development. Avoid this number 3 in your plastic container if you want to use it to store food.

Number 4 means Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE). Found in grocery bags and cling wraps, this plastic is safe and recyclable. However, there are perhaps less recycling companies that want to take containers made of LDPE.

Number 5 means Polypropylene (PP) as normally found in yoghurt cups and cloudy bottles. This type of plastic is safe and recyclable. But like LDPE, it is not an item most favored by recycling companies to manage.

Number 6 means Polystyrene (PS). If you buy a take-out coffee, you are most likely served with cups made of PS. It is not a recommended plastic type for your containers as it could leach styrene – suspected as carcinogen on human – into the food stored.

Number 7 means other types of plastic resins that are not mentioned above, mostly invented post 1987. It includes Polycarbonate (PC), Polylactide (PLA) and BPA-Free plastics. PLA is fine to use for food-based containers as it is the type of plastic that is made from renewable resources with high starch content like potatoes and sugar canes. It is unrecyclable but since it is made from plants, these plastics can be composted. On the other hand, PC and BPA-Free plastics should stay avoided. Polycarbonate is the only plastic made with Bisphenol A, a substance that has been linked to various health problems like heart disease and obesity.

Leather Recliner Shopping Guide

Do you own a recliner at home? If you don’t have one at home, maybe it is time to get one for better seating and relaxation.

Buying a recliner is not a easy task, although you may not spend as much time as buying a vehicle , it still requires certain amount of efforts to make a good decision. The first thing you need to consider is to make sure the style of the chair matches the style of your room. Narrow down your searches by asking yourself what kind of style are you looking for? The next thing you want to do is to determine how much you are willing to spend. Generally, you can find recliner ranges from $99 to $2000. Make up your mind whether you are looking for a recliner that costs around $300 or a luxury recliner that costs more than $1000. Ask yourself.

The last thing you may want to consider is how much space you have in your room for the recliner. If it’s too close to the wall, for example, a chair that reclines all the way back would not be practical. Make sure you measure the space before going to the store, so that the salesperson can measure the distance needed to recline all the way and relax.

The last but not the least thing to ask is who is going to use the recliner most often? Are you buying the recliner for yourself or buying it for your mom and dad? Make sure you bring the person to the place and let them try it. Keep this in mind, different people simply have different preferences and a recliner that you love may disliked by other people.