Reviews / Canada

Canadian Shopping Discussion: PC Optimum – Your Thoughts & Reviews?

PC Optimum Reviews

Now that the program is “fully functional”, how is the new PC Optimum working for you?

Last week, we saw generic offers while they connected our previous shopping to our accounts.  Today, my own offers are mostly items I would buy.  Not necessarily this week, but mostly not items that are far removed from my usual shopping preferences.  There are some duplicates that I am not sure are an error or will credit twice (if so, free cookies!).  It still seems a little buggy too.  I woke up to 26 offers but now only have 19 showing.  How are your offers looking?

PC Optimum at Shoppers Drug Mart

PC Optimum Review - Earning Points at Shoppers Drug Mart

There are very little changes as far as PC Plus, but Shoppers Drug Mart is quite the change. I have very little in my offers that could be purchased at Shoppers Drug Mart.  Sure, I have the exclusive when you spend offers over the week, but none of the items I would buy to maximize my points.

Shoppers Drug Mart has a flyer offer of 25,000 points when you spend $75 or more this weekend.  While they claim that this is in line with previous offers, you can’t save them to make the usual 18,500 Shoppers Optimum points worth more at bonus redemption.  Even at the old maximum redemption of $170, those points were worth $33.  Will this impact how you shop at Shoppers Drug Mart?  Do you have more drug store type offers showing?

PC Optimum at Grocery Stores

PC Optimum Review - Earning Points at Grocery Stores

It is definitely nice to see some store offers for No Frills.  They are likely just introductory offers and will decrease at some point so take advantage while you can.  There is very little change for me compared to PC Plus now that my offers have normalized.  I wouldn’t make a trip to the grocery store for just $10 so the lower redemption threshold isn’t a big deal for me.

It is also nice to see that not only are the buttons for saving an offer for next week or not showing one again working, but available for those who use web access instead of the app.

Are the store offers enticing you into Loblaws banner stores?  Have you experienced the communication failures that many are talking about and not receiving points?  Hopefully now that many people have switched their cards, the glitches will become a thing of the past.

What are your thoughts on the changes?  Will you shop more or less at these stores?  Do you miss your old Shoppers Optimum program already?

Pampers Canada Gifts To Grow Rewards Points: Get 15 FREE Pampers Rewards Points With New Promo Code

Pampers Canada Gift points at

Pampers Canada has a new promo code for FREE rewards points, ends, Sunday, October 30, 2016.

  • Use promo code TRICKORTWEETS15 to get 15 FREE rewards points.

Note that you do NOT need to have babies or children to participate in this program and everyone is eligible to join the Pampers Canada rewards program.

Click here to redeem your Pampers Canada rewards points

RECALL: L’Oréal Canada Recalls Ideal Moisture Dry & Sensitive Day Cream Due to Risks of Allergic Reactions & Skin Irritation

2715208Recall from L’Oréal! L’Oréal’s recalls Ideal Moisture Dry and Sensitive Day cream with the lot number 20K609. It was recalled due to risks of allergic reactions & skin irritation as a result of high concentration level of methylisothiazolinone (MI). This product has been in the market for approximately three years between July 2013 and February 2016 and 57,447 products were sold. There were no reported injuries but if you have this item, stop using it and return it to the place of purchase for a refund.

Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled cosmetics and return it to the place of purchase for a refund.

Click here for more information on this L’Oréal recall. 

Canadian Food Recall Warning: Del Monte & Sysco Imperial Fresh Brand Cantaloupes Recalled Due to Salmonella


Freshpoint Vancouver, Ltd. is recalling Del Monte and Sysco Imperial Fresh brand cantaloupes from the marketplace due to possible Salmonella contamination. The distribution of these items is Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and possibly national. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is recalling these three products:

  1. Del Monte Cantaloupe 1 count
  2. Del Monte Cantaloupe (case) 12 count, lot 360012
  3. Sysco Imperial Fresh Cantaloupe 3 count, lot 127 12 035 5

What you should do: Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased. Consumers who are unsure if they have the affected cantaloupes are advised to check with their retailer.

Despite the recall, there have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of these cantaloupes.

Click here at Healthy Canadians for more information.

Black Friday Hours & Extended Holidays Hours 2014 at Toronto and GTA Shopping Malls

SC STORESThis Black Friday most shopping malls in Toronto and the GTA will open earlier! Also, many shopping malls have extended hours during the Holidays and Christmas season. We put together this GTA malls shopping hours guide to help you and your family plan your holiday shopping!

Yorkdale Shopping Centre
These holiday hours have started and will end on January 4th 2015:
Monday to Friday: 9:30 am – 9:30 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am – 9:30 pm
Sunday: 10 am – 7 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 7:00 am – 9:30 pm

Toronto Eaton Centre
Monday to Friday: 10:00 am – 9:30 pm
Saturday: 9:30 am – 9:30 pm
Sunday: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 6:00 am – 9:30 pm

Fairview Mall
These holiday hours will start on November 29th 2014:
Monday to Saturday: 9:30 am – 9:30 pm
Sunday: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 7:00 am – 9:00 pm

Sherway Gardens Toronto
Monday to Friday: 10:00 am – 9:00 pm
Saturday: 9:30 am – 9:00 pm
Sunday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 7:00 am – 9:00 pm

Scarborough Town Centre
Monday to Friday: 10 am – 9 pm
Saturday: 9:30 am – 9 pm
Sunday: 11am – 7 pm

Square One Shopping Centre
Monday to Friday: 10 am – 9 pm
Saturday: 9:30 am – 9 pm
Sunday: 11 am – 7 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 8am – 10pm

Toronto Premium Outlets
These holiday hours will start on December 1st 2014 and end on December 19th 2014:
Monday to Saturday: 9 am – 9 pm
Sunday: 10 am – 7 pm
Black Friday on November 28th 2014: 6am – 10pm
Black Friday Weekend: Saturday November 29th: 7 am – 10 pm
Black Friday Weekend: Sunday November 30th: 9am – 9pm

Bayview Village Toronto
These holiday hours will start on November 29 2014:
Monday to Friday: 10 am to 9 pm
Saturday: 9 am to 7 pm
Sunday: 11 am to 7 pm

Are Your Loyalty/Reward Card Points About To Expire?

loyalty cards

We often get posts on the forum that someone has logged into their loyalty card after not using it for a while to find their points have expired, especially when households have a second card that is not used as much.

  • Air Miles: Accounts are inactive after 24 months of non-use and all miles expire 5 years from issue.
  • Aeroplan: Accounts are inactive after 12 months of non-use and  points expired 7 years from issue (point expiry recently removed from terms).

Grocery Stores:

  • More Rewards: Accounts are inactive after 18 months of non-use. Points do not expire if card is active.
  • PC Plus: Accounts are inactive after 24 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.
  • Club Sobeys: Accounts are inactive after 24 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.


  • Sephora Beauty Insiders: Accounts are inactive after 24 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.
  • Shoppers Optimum: Accounts are inactive after 12 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.

Other Stores

  • Best Buy Reward Zone: Accounts are deemed inactive on December 31st if you have made no purchases in that calendar year.  Points do not expire if card is active.  If you have enough points to redeem a gift card, they will automatically redeem for you before closing the card.
  • Hudson’s Bay Rewards: Accounts are inactive after 12 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.
  • Esso Extra: Accounts are inactive after 12 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.
  • Petro Points: Accounts are inactive after 12 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.
  • Scene Points: Accounts are inactive after 24 months of non-use.  Points do not expire if card is active.

Did you also know that if you become bankrupt, your points are forfeited?

LikeNet Coming Back & Restoring Balances – Will You Trust Them Again?


Some of you will remember when it was around in 2012 then closed down suddenly leaving many people owed money (those who did not have the minimum threshold to cash out when they changed it to a higher threshold without notice).

They claim that they will restore our balances and have new ways to earn, but will you trust them again?  Will you use them just to get to the cashout threshold to get what you were previously owed?

They promise to have more way to earn and exclusive deals but personally I think opening it to the USA means we will get less opportunities (not to mention the fact that they couldn’t handle a relatively small Canadian market before).

If you were not aware of LikeNet when they were around before, you can read more about them here.

Sally Hansen #CSMTKO Complete Salon Nail Polish Review & Chance To Win $25 Shoppers Drug Mart Gift Card


As I mentioned earlier, I got the chance to try out Sally Hansen’s Complete Salon Manicure from Influenster. They sent me three colours to try and I took off Jaded today and used the other two. I went straight for Jaded since I loved the colour and it is a little different than the classic red of Red My Lips and the vampy plum of Pat on the Black. I was a little disappointed at first, the first coat of Jaded was very thin and streaky. It is meant to have a gel finish but the streakyness didn’t have the classic look of gel where you can wear it without full opacity. It did however get much better with each coat, it took 4 for full opacity but looked great. The gel/creme finish meant it wasn’t really thick with 4 coats too. I wore it for 3 days, nowhere near the full 10 days the advertising says but I am hard on my nails and with the exception of a cured gel manicure, nothing is lasting 10 days on my nails. The included base coat does seem to work as I had no yellowing of the nails and green/blue nail polish often discolours my nails.

After removing Jaded, I went for Red My Lips with Pat on the Black as an accent nail as it is quite dark for every day use for me. The finish worked much better on these colours and only two coats of red and 3 of Pat on the Black were needed, they are not as streaky and the formula really works for the colours. All of Sally Hansen’s Complete Salon Manicure nail polishes come in a fairly large bottle with a nice wide brush. Red can be a mess to apply and looks cheap if you get it everywhere so I was happy to find the brush was so accurate and not needing as many brush strokes helped stop the formula from streaking.


We have a $25 Shoppers Drug Mart gift card to give away so that you can try Sally Hansen’s Complete Salon Manicure yourself (or use it for anything you want at Shoppers Drug Mart).  All you have to do is reply to this post letting us know which three colours you would like to try.  You can find a list with images of the colours here.  Entries will close at 11:59pm on Thursday 16 January ET.  One entry per person/IP address.

The winner is Autumn with this comment


Canadian Quick Questions: Do You Buy Per Pack Priced Fresh Meat?


I don’t buy meat at Walmart often, but yesterday while shopping, I needed to pick up some chicken breasts and did not want to go to our usual store after Walmart, nor carry chicken around for an hour in Walmart.  I know there is always a difference in weights, but the difference really surprised me with these $9 packs with roughly 5 chicken breasts per pack.  This is just a few of them but shows the lowest and highest weights I could find, a difference of 388g, a bit under 1lb.

  • 1.65lb @ $5.46/lb
  • 1.89lb @ $4.76/lb
  • 2.39lb @ $3.76/lb
  • 2.5lb @ $3.60/lb

Fortinos, my local grocery store, has chicken breasts at $3.99/lb this week so by buying the largest pack, I did save some money.   The number of packs with under 900g/2lbs far outweighed the heavier packs however and most people would end up paying far more (a lot more with these weights).

Do you buy meat priced per pack, do you also dig through the display looking for the best deal?

The Body Shop Canada: 3 for $30, Skin Boost Review + What’s Your Favourite Product?

The Body Shop Canada Sale 3 for $30It’s back! All weekend long (ends December 16th), you can shop and save in-store at The Body Shop with the purchase of 3 items for only $30!

If you’re like me, you’re probably thinking, ‘but they just had their 50% off sale!?’ – Ahhh, yes. But! During this sale, think make-up and their quality $20+ skincare products. 😉

The Body Shop Canada Vitamin C Skin Boost ReviewDuring their last 3 for $30 sale (which wasn’t that long ago), I decided to try their new ‘Vitamin C Skin Boost’ and I’m going to sound like such a girl when I say this, but ‘omigosh, it’s the best product ever’… ha! I honestly wish I had stocked up (guess what I’ll be doing today, lol) – especially given its regular price at $26 – Ouch!

I had a beauty mission in mind: the eye area and during my last trip to the The Body Shop I had a couple of items in the Vitamin C line that piqued my curiosity: their Eye Reviver Duo and their Skin Boost. Keeping price, value and volume in mind, I decided on the Skin Boost, figuring it should provide the same results as the little roll-on stick, and then some.

And wow! Thanks to this product I wear zero eye corrector make-up, any dark shadows seem to fade away. My eyes feel refreshed and awake –  and the delicate citrus scent I absolutely love! A little goes a long way, although you may find yourself wanting to reapply as the burst of oranges and silky feel is quite addicting, lol. If you decide to try any product this weekend, I definitely recommend that you try their Vitamin C Skin Boost. A savings of $16 (before tax) at only $10 this weekend! 😀

What’s your favourite The Body Shop product?

Canadian Quick Questions: What Is It About A Liquidation Sale That Makes Us Act Like This?

My local Zellers closes in just over a week, so we thought we would go by and see what deals they had left.

In the clothes section, people were arguing over a Jockey hoodie, one holding it by the hood, the other by an arm both saying they had seen it first – there were 6 more on the rack and it was not even the most amazing deal! In the electronics section, someone actually hit someone else with a Wii game.

But the mess amazed me, the picture above was taken beside a price checker, people were just looking at the price then throwing the item on the floor if too expensive.  None of the items we bought came up at the price it should have, one item that should have been $32.99 – 60% came up at $4.19 once the discount was taken and I price checked it at $32.99 so price checking was redundant anyway.  There were areas where everything had been knocked off the shelves and as quickly as staff were putting it back, people were throwing it back on the floor.

What is it about a liquidation sale that makes us lose all sense of how we should behave? 

There is no way we would go into a store on a regular day and just throw things we don’t want on the floor.  Return them to the wrong area maybe, but not just chuck it on the floor right in front of a staff member who has to clean it up.  I know it is partly that the staff don’t care as much with just a few days left and are likely not cleaning up as quickly but that alone cannot account for the disaster in these stores.

Canadian Quick Question: Do You Think Paper Coupons Are A Thing Of The Past?

My daughter’s school announced in their paper newsletter that they will no longer be offering, well, paper newsletters.  In an effort to be more environmentally friendly, the school has decided the newsletter will only be offered on their website.  My first reaction was “Whaaaat?” and then I quickly decided it was a good idea.  Why not?  It will save a few thousand trees and let’s face it, half the time I end up losing that newsletter and looking at it online, anyway.

This seems to be the trend with all “paper conveniences”.  Bills, flyers, bank statements and now, coupons.  In the last 5 years there has been a huge shift towards coupons you can show on your smart phone.  In fact, most Canadian retailers are expecting the number of mobile coupons to double in 2013.  Which means many new businesses will be offering this feature to “keep up with the times”.

Although I agree it is far more environmentally friendly to use mobile coupons and it will likely take less time to print or cut them out, sort through them, put them in my coupon binder etc., I will still miss them…a lot.  There is something about finding the coupons in a flyer or having them show up in the mail that taps into my primordial need to care for my family.  It’s almost a modern day “hunting and gathering” and somehow that seems to be lost when everything shows up on a phone.

Do you think paper coupons are a thing of the past?  Let us know!



Target Canada Coupon Policy

One of our forum users, sydnurbin, contacted Target Canada to ask about their coupon policy and received a policy rather than the standard we are looking into the Canadian market response:

Dear Customer,

Thanks for asking us about using coupons at Target. Coupons are a great way to save even more when shopping with us, and it’s easy to use them at our stores. Because of the variety of coupons available to our guests, we do have some guidelines for how coupons can be redeemed at Target.

To see the Target coupon policy, please visit Here’s some answers to commonly asked questions:

  • We accept two kinds of coupons: Target-issued and manufacturer-issues.
  • We’ll accept one Target coupon and one manufacturer coupon for the same item, unless either coupon prohibits it.
  • There’s a limit of 4 identical coupons per household, per day (unless otherwise noted on coupon).
  • We can’t give cash back if the face value of a coupon is greater than the purchase value of the item; in this case, we’re able to adjust the value of the coupon to equal the price of the item.
  • Returns of items purchased using Manufacturer Coupons may receive coupon value returned in the form of a Target GiftCard.
  • We can’t accept coupons from other retailers, or coupons for products not carried in our stores.
  • All valid coupons should be presented to the cashier while you’re checking out.
  • We don’t accept expired coupons.

For questions about using a specific coupon, we encourage you to stop by the Guest Service Desk and ask to speak with the Guest Service Team Leader. They’ll do their best to help while you’re in the store. If you still have questions after speaking with them, please call our Guest Relations team at (800) 440-0680. Either way, we’re here to help!

We appreciate the opportunity to share this information with you.

So four of each item and no overage, I may still be shopping at Walmart for some things

Canadian Quick Question: Where Do Your Children Go Trick-Or-Treating?

It is the day before Halloween and the stores are jam-packed with last minute shoppers.  People are running about trying to find more candy, the all-important pumpkin or “one more thing” for their child’s costume.  The till tape is flying as stores try to push out the last of their Halloween merchandise. 

However, behind the scenes retailers are also preparing for an onslaught of trick or treaters.  Yes, it seems the mall has become the go-to destination for little ones to collect their candy.  And why not?  A mall is safe, well lit, entertaining and most importantly, WARM.  Families can pull into underground parking, enjoy a hot beverage from the food court and casually stroll through the mall while their kids get free treats.  A nice, safe way to spend Halloween.

On the flip side, there are the traditional trick or treaters who go door-to-door.  They stuff their costumes over a snowsuit, hope their mask will keep their faces warm and grab a pillowcase.  Parents follow carefully behind them in the van as they run feverishly around the neighbourhood hoping for the “big score”.  They are chilled and exhausted but hardly skip a beat as the adrenaline courses through their veins.  These trick or treaters will collect candy well past their bedtime and return home smiling from ear to ear. 

Finally, there are the “party” trick or treaters.  They skip the mall and the great outdoors in favour of a small gathering of friends and relatives.  A small bucket is used to collect treats won through games and haunted houses.  These children experience a more intimate affair that makes Halloween a little more personal.

All three options are fantastic ways to spend Halloween.  Each offer a different experience and yet, the outcome is the same: CANDY FOR EVERYONE!

Where do your children go trick or treating?  Let us know!

Smart Canucks wishes all of your children a safe and happy Halloween 2012.

Government Changes Rules On Prepaid Credit Cards – No Expiry & Fee Changes

The federal government have finally imposed regulations on prepaid credit card companies.

Under the new regulations, prepaid cards must fully disclose any fees and conditions at activation, must not expire and eliminate any unused balance, they also can’t have maintenance fees for at least one year after card activation.

For more information, check the government’s press release here.

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