Starbucks Secret Ingredient: Beetles

I am a huge supporter of Starbucks and their amazing selection of coffee and coffee related products, but when news came about that they were using crushed beetles, yes, crushed beetles in their strawberry and red colored products, I almost got sick to my stomach. Don’t fret, not everyone has been drinking these beetles, just those of you who have been drinking their strawberry drinks and smoothies, eating their red velvet pies or cake pops, and snacking on their pink colored pies.

Now let’s get down to the facts. There are these exotic beetles that when frozen and crushed make a red liquid that the FDA has even approved. Starbucks, along with many other companies and manufactures including cosmetic brands, yogurt companies, and even ice cream makers, have been using this dye material for quite some time. Recently Starbucks was petitioned (thank God) by a group of Vegans and Vegetarians. Now Starbucks claims that by the end of June they will have replaced the beetle based dye in their products with a tomato based product. It’s hard to believe all of this, but it’s all too true. Now only is it gross and sickening to think about, but it’s very inhumane to take thousands, possibly millions, of beetles and just grind them up into a juice for us to enjoy at around $5 a cup at our local Starbucks. I am just glad to hear that Starbucks is doing something to change this, though it does make you wonder what is in all of the food we eat and drink, doesn’t it?

Toast Pop Guy’s Favorites: Modern Black

Modern is a great look for anyone, and of course we all have our favorite things. It just so happens that I love modern things quite a bit. I like minimal and simplistic looks as well as items that contribute to the overall style of the modern look.

(1.) Sony Piiq Earbuds – Sony has developed a new line of earbuds by the name of Piiq that not only look great, have great sound, and offer neat functions not accompanied by most other earbuds, but they also have a wide variety of choices at a very affordable price. ($13 directly from Sony)

(2.) Blackberry Bold 9650 – I’m not necessarily suggesting that you go to your cell phone provider and switch your phone over for a Blackberry, you still have to have a phone that works for you and what you like (ex. keyboard, touch screen, camera, etc.), but do keep in mind that a good looking phone is half the battle most of the time. ($550 w/o contract)

(3.) Capsule Case Wallet – Capsule Case has been making a great alternative to the traditional wallet for quite some time now! Though I have trouble fitting cash in mine sometimes, it is perfect for credit and business cards. Keep looking classy and modern while saving the functions you need in a wallet. They offer many different colors in their line of modern wallets, but I like to keep it simple and so I went with a traditional black color. This wallet not only looks fantastic, but feels sleek and appropriately sized in your hands and pocket. ($15 varies by store)

(4.) Moleskine Sketchbook – If you’re like me, you love to sketch, but you hate carrying around a huge sketchbook with pages that smudge your wonderful works of art. Well, that’s where this little guy comes in handy. Moleskine makes my favorite line of books on the market, their paper is top of the line and does not smudge your work, especially when you use a sharpie pen (I love those!). They offer notebooks, planners, and many other types of books, as well as sizes, but you can’t go wrong with the medium sized Moleskine Sketchbook. ($15 varies by store) 

 

Karmin Crash Your Party

It’s always great to see talented people get recognition, and that is why it is so great to see the online YouTube sensation, Karmin, finally get the credit that they deserve. This duo began showing off their musical talents through YouTube videos, and their obvious musical gifts were easily recognized and they now boast a hit single, Crash Your Party, which is available on iTunes, as well as a fast paced music video to accompany the song.

Nick an Amy are the two that make the music possible. Their single has even been featured recently on Amazon as the hit song of the day. They met each other while attending college and began writing music together and collaborating, and well, the rest is history! Most of their early music that they showed off online were covers of popular pop songs. With a huge fan base that is ever growing and a promising career in the music industry, you are sure to hear a lot more from Karmin in the near future.

MiiBottle

A major problem in most modern-day households is the identification of whose drink is whose. I can speak from past experience that this is something that has went on throughout time and didn’t seem to ever have an end in sight. The United States in particular is the largest purchaser of bottled water in the entire world, that should say something for itself. Around 70 million bottles of water are purchased daily in the U.S. and nearly 60 million of them end up in the trash. A contributing factor are those bottles thrown away because you simply don’t want to drink out of someone else’s bottle.

One rising company is changing the way we identify our bottles and making it easy and fun to keep track of which drink is yours! MiiBottle is a simple and easy to use system of identifying your bottle. You simply take one of their variously colored snap-on bottle identifiers and clip it onto the bottle with no hassle or instructions other than that needed. They also boast a neat dolphin design making it that much more entertaining just to regard a bottle as yours. But you may be wondering, what makes MiiBottle such a great company?

Well, for starters their products are made of 100% recycled material! It’s great to know that you have a product that you will actually use, but it makes it that much better to know that the product that you are using is made of recycled material! Another cool thing about this company is, they have solved an issue that is simple yet bothersome, and they have done so in a very innovative way!

We have had the opportunity to try these ourselves and they are as simple and easy to use as they look. You will notice that they have a firm snap around your bottles lid, so there are no worries about them falling off of your bottle. The colors are also very vibrant and look great, especially when there are multiple bottles using them! The packaging is simple and conveys the same overall idea of simplicity and problem solving and lets you know the true purpose of this life changing product, to simply make your everyday life easier, save you money on bottles you may’ve thrown away and provide a fun solution to an age old question, “Is that my bottle?” Now you will know, “Yes, it’s MiiBottle!”

To learn more check out their oficial website at MiiBottle.com or like the MiiBottle Facebook page to keep up to date on news and info regarding this creative new product! If you are interested in helping them Kickstart this product and get it sold in more places while getting yourself a pack or two of these cool little things, check out the MiiBottle Kickstarter page to make a donation!

GetGlue

Do you watch a lot of television? How about movies? Hmm, well do you read books, listen to music, or talk about cool topics? You obviously do something! One website is in the business of rewarding you for everything you do, literally! It’s quite simple to understand their concept. You sign up for an account on the website named GetGlue, check-in when you do something such as watch a television show, and then you get rewarded with awesome stickers that not only show up on your account but you can have sent to you in the mail for FREE once you reach 20 stickers, and trust us, it doesn’t take long.

For every 20 stickers you earn you can request them to be sent to you and they will arrive in about 4-6 weeks, sometimes earlier. They have GetGlue apps for pretty much every device you can imagine, so it’s easy to check-in throughout your day! Oh, and if you are at a loss on how to get stickers, just click their Sticker tab and it shows you all of the current ways to get stickers. It’s never been easier to have fun doing the things you love to do and already do while getting rewarded in an awesome way! Don’t worry about these being bad quality either, we have already done this a few times and the stickers look great, just as clear as the ones you earn on the website! Simply go to GetGlue.com and let the sticker collecting begin!