Broke-Ass Category: Christen


Affiliate Review Disclaimer

The Snug Life: A Mattress to Fall in Love WithWhen I made a Huge Life Choice four years ago and uprooted my life from Jackson, Wyo., and moved to Louisville, Ky., I had to get all new things for my first adventure living completely by myself (and I wasn’t entirely sad to leave all my old shit with my ex). One of the things I was really, really excited about was buying a whole new bed setup. I had my heart set on getting a grown-up bed frame and a fancy (ish) foam mattress and living like a damned adult. I logged hours on Ikea’s website researching frames and mattresses that would best suit my aesthetic and newly-independent self. I fell in love with a faux wrought-iron frame that was just a hint of old-school and totally romantic. They also had a foam mattress that was a few hundred bucks — so firmly within my price range — and totally comfs (as I discovered once I got to the actual store). Sold, yo!

Fast forward four years to my current newlywed, knocked-up state and that same foam mattress is still kickin’ it in my casa. It’s made the move from Louisville to Denton, Texas, to Jacksonville, Fla., and back to Denton. It’s been my comfy little sanctuary in three apartments, a house and a duplex — and for a short time, the floor of a friend’s spare room. Our three cats have all been caught in various states of cute upon it. But, the wear and tear is starting to get real, and as any pregnant ladies know: Sleeping is a bitch when you’re knocked up. Hip pain, insomnia, boob discomfort … you name it, it’s a thing.

The Snug Life: A Mattress to Fall in Love WithSee, I know sleep is important. I know that I’m a total asshole if I don’t log enough Zzzs, and that when I’m feeling any kind of anxious or depressed, it’s my bed that makes me feel the best. It’s where I relax, where I binge watch “Nashville” (RIP) and “Scandal,” where I contemplate and where I get frisky. I know it’s been said that we spend one-third of our lives sleeping, but that’s just sleeping. What about all the other superfuntimez we have in bed? And while a pretty bed frame and generally wonderful aesthetic help make the room that much better, the cornerstone of a bedroom sanctuary is the mattress.

But mattress shopping itself is a total pain in the ass. Sure, you can go down to the Goodwill and pick up a “pillowtop” (lies!) for cheap, but I can pretty much guarantee you’re gonna have a hard time finding any legit comfort there. You can mosey on down to the nearest legit mattress shop, where you’ll be faced with a huge showroom of options and try to mimic “sleeping” under the glare of flourescent lights and the salesperson who knows you’re just here to price out options.

Tuft & NeedleOr you can say fuck it all and make the right choice the first time and go with Tuft & Needle. A few weeks ago, Tuft & Needle reached out to me to see if I’d be willing to test drive one of their mattresses, which — duh. Of course I would. I’m pregnant. I’ll try anything to get more sleep. And OhMyFuckingGod I’m so glad I did. After four years on my li’l old Ikea mattress, this thing is like a dream.

As I waited for it to arrive (because it comes right to your door, which means no having to find a homie with a truck to bribe into helping you pick it up), I researched how these bad boys are made, and realized it’s a total match made in Broke-Ass slumber heaven. A mattress could typically run you in the thousands for a boatload of “features” (mainly foam and latex and marketing magic), but Tuft & Needle throws that out the window and delivers its own technology for literally a fraction of the price — as in my queen-size mattress runs a pretty breezy $600, and the prices top out at $750 for a California King.

Speaking of breezy, as someone who typically runs at least 10 degrees hotter than the normal human (double that with baby incubating), staying cool when I’m sleeping is akin to battling in The Hunger Games. Fans, AC, cooling pillow inserts, the thinnest sheets imaginable and I’m still just barely reaching stasis … except with my schmancy new mattress that magically — er, strategically — draws heat away from my body and manages to make me find my chill.

The Snug Life: A Mattress to Fall in Love WithOther cool things? It comes in a small-ish box (this is relative — as a 5’2″ human, it was just about my size), is super easy to “assemble” and you don’t have to wait for it to expand for many hours because it’s pretty much instantaneous. A 10-year warranty ensures you’re stoked and a 100 day return policy makes it easy to change your mind (you won’t). Tuft & Needle’s mattresses are made in the U.S. and their production cuts out the middle man, which means they cut out the costs associated with said middle man.

In your first year of marriage, you’ll log about 3,000 hours of sleep (and other, ahem, funtimez), so you should probz make sure you’re the comfiest you can be. Treat yo-self without killing your wallet and check out Tuft & Needle.

  • 5/20

    Affiliate Disclaimer NewEtsy TheAngelPaperie These are My People Quote on Canvas

    Quote on Canvas available from Etsy seller TheAngelPaperie

    I recently re-shared a post I wrote last year about fear-mongering, shaming and budget weddings because I’ve been noticing a trend that concerns me — not necessarily among our readers, but more among wedding businesses. Recently on BAB’s Facebook page, one of our advertisers was harassed and bullied due to the nature of her business. See, she was an online wedding gown retailer — her gowns were made by seamstresses overseas, but she was not the rip-off, knock-off business you’ve read about on Buzzfeed. Rather, like a very large majority of retailers across all sectors, she outsourced the manufacturing of her gowns overseas to cut down on costs and save her customers money. And her customers are primarily brides working with smaller budgets, so her advertising with us was kind of a no-brainer. I had thoroughly done my research before agreeing to work with her, because we try to ensure our partnerships aren’t only good for us as a business, but for you guys as consumers.

    One of our primary goals here is to provide a safe space for businesses and couples of all ilks to come and connect. Not every wedding business is cut from the same cloth and they tend to cater to a wide range of customers, just as not every couple is the same and will make decisions best for them based on their budgets and wants. But finding the right people for you when there are a million and a half websites and options out there can be tricky. So we try to help and support both you and those businesses.

    In the incident with the wedding gown retailer, she had purchased a Facebook shoutout sometime in April. Last week, a woman — who I discovered is the owner of a brick and mortar bridal salon in Kentucky — started accusing our advertiser of being a wedding gown counterfeiter. Though our advertiser responded that she was not a counterfeiter and offered to privately discuss her business with this woman, the comments did not stop. And in fact, the woman pulled in other brick and mortar bridal salon owners to comment as well, eventually leading to a thread about 50 comments deep and genuinely full of harassing and bullying comments. They even recruited a staffer of a well-known bridal magazine and started accusing the advertiser of tax fraud among other unethical business practices. I remained in communication with the advertiser the whole time, trying to support and defend her — because that’s what we do when we’ve vetted a business we believe is a good fit. And we certainly don’t tolerate bullying or harassment of any kind, especially not on our own social media platforms. In the end, the advertiser asked me to delete the Facebook post, which I did, and she decided to close her shop for a while.

    You guys, this behavior lead her to CLOSE HER SHOP. As in, stop her business. That’s not very cool. And in the end, it came to light that the whole ruckus began because the brick and mortar salon owner believes online retailers are a threat to her business — so rather than doing her research, she attacked.

    Here at The Broke-Ass Bride, we have often promoted nontraditional methods of obtaining your wedding gown — whether it’s shopping off-the-rack, buying from online retailers, sewing your own gown or even daring to get your gown from an overseas retailer. We try to provide you with the best information and education possible so you can make the best decision for you and your budget. We know that your budgets vary, based on the figures you give us to work with for Can’t Afford It? Get Over It! and we know that bridal salons may not be the best place for you to buy your wedding gown, given they often have starting prices that are double what many of you would like to spend. For many of you, dropping mad cash on a gown you will wear for a single day is not a priority, so we try to help you find options that work for you. But others of you place high priority on the gown and want the salon experience, and we applaud that as well.

    And this goes beyond wedding gowns. We try to provide you with tips, tricks, DIY tutorials and advice to help you be creative and savvy with your wedding dollars, regardless of your budget. We realize no two of you darling Broke-Asses are alike, nor will your weddings be. You are all prioritizing differently for your weddings, which we well know just from our Real Brides, so we try to include as much information as possible. And we strive to make this a safe, judgment-free community for you to come to, regardless if your wedding budget is $100 or $50,000 (or more!). Budget means different things to different people, and is totally relative depending on where you live, what you do, etc. We stand behind the companies we we work with because we believe they’ll be a great fit for you.

    We often hear the word “tacky” thrown around a lot in Weddingland, and we actually have our comment moderation set up both here and on Facebook to require manual approval for any comment that contains the word, because we feel so strongly about not hurting other people’s feelings. We keep a close eye on all of our social media platforms to ensure everyone is playing nice and you, our readers, feel safe having conversations in the space we provide. Because weddings are stressful, y’all, and the last thing you or anyone needs is for a stranger to openly and wantonly judge or harass you based on the decisions you make that are best for your situation. In an industry that stretches into the billions in revenue yearly and relies on the likes of celebrities and their multi-million dollar nuptials to forecast trends, being a bride with a small budget — whether by choice or by circumstance — can be difficult and shade can and will be thrown.

    But not here. Whether you’re an advertiser who wants to work with Broke-Ass couples or you are a part of a Broke-Ass couple, this is your space. This area was made for you. And we try to make it safe so you can be who you are and throw the wedding you want, whatever that looks like and however you accomplish that.

  • 5/17

    Paperrama Custom Wedding Guestbook

    After the wedding is all said and done you and your new partner will be settling into married life and tackling whatever challenges come along with it, which may include decorating your new home together with artwork and other goodies. You may have a few wedding odds and ends that will wind up on shelves -- or in drawers -- for years to come, but…

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    Etsy ChicagoFactory Mutual Weirdness Forever Cake Topper

    Cake toppers are a fun way to add a personalized touch to your wedding reception without spending a billion bucks. Whether you're going all out with a multi-tier cake, are doing a fun twist with individual cupcakes or are turning the whole cake tradition on its head and opting for pie, donuts or some other kind of awesome treat, a cake topper gives your sweet…

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    Beau-Coup Rock Candy on a Stick

    I've had the idea of carnival weddings on my mind ever since Rachel revealed that would be the theme for her Ohio nuptials. I've seen a few weddings with the theme before and have always loved the fun, colorful, eclectic vibes and gorgeous blend of whimsy and romance. It's kind of impossible not to feel like a kid at heart when attending an event with…

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  • 4/25

    Changing Your Name Save Time and Sanity with Maidenchange

    The topic of changing one's last name after marriage comes up a lot around here, and for good reason: It's a big decision and it can be incredibly time-consuming to make it happen. There are forms to fill out, materials to get replaced and potentially huge wait times at the DMV or Social Security Office, two places where you likely have to actually make a…

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    PMD Personal Microderm Kit

    It's not too super often that I get super amped about fancy schmancy skincare stuff, but when it happens you better believe it's good. And guys, this is good: Like spa-at-home-for-a-great-price, good. I'm pretty basic when it comes to my own skincare routine -- Dove beauty bar, exfoliating tool, moisturizer and done. There's not a whole lot of fancy going on there (I mean, for…

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  • 4/15

    Hips and Curves Edwardian Cotton Chemise

    Happy Friday, Broke-Asses! How's your wedding planning going? You know you can always holler at us if you need some advice, right? OK. Good. Just making sure you know we've got your backs. Now that we have that out of the way, let's mention your unmentionables -- specifically the sexy little somethings to turn up the heat for your first night as newlyweds or while…

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