What Hooked Me First #PTPAInsider

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What hooked me first was the hair. Oh, I’m deadly serious here. Anyone who hangs out at PTPA media web site, or watches the great televised appearances of the PTPA (parent tested and parent approved) winner’s list of products knows who I am talking about when I say PTPA and hair in the same sentence. I am of course, talking about CEO Sharon Vinderine. 
A couple of years ago at a digital media conference, PTPA CEO Sharon Vinderine spoke. And then again last year at She’s Connected 2011. Vinderine is a savvy business woman and the head of a really dynamic business, named Parent Tested, Parent Approved. I see PTPA seals in all the major retailers now, and when I don’t see them I seek them out inside a store to see what Sharon approves. She is smart. She is social media savvy. She is a Mom and frankly, she has built a small business army of Moms and Dads who are fans of PTPA and the award-winning products that have earned the coveted seal. 
Now, make no mistake, as Sharon spoke I was absorbing every word, but at the same time, in complete honesty, it’s darn near impossible not to be hypnotized by Sharon’s gorgeous curly hair. It was perfect. See, I too am a curly-haired girl and my quest to make those curls behave and be shiny and defined, has been lifelong. No joke. So, way back in 2010 or 2011, as I listened to Sharon connecting with brands and bloggers in a Toronto conference room, I think I heard some of what she said, and I learned a bit about the amazing web site for parents and brands and I took it all home with me after that first encounter to process slowly. But, in a bizarrely curious and compelling way I still wanted to know what did she use to make her curly hair look so perfect. And what was the secret to the flawless makeup and also how is it possible to have such white teeth? I kind of wanted to raid her bathroom cupboards and find out all her beauty secrets. 
I promise you I am not a stalker. So instead, I visited the PTPA website and enjoyed learning about the buzz-worthy brands and amazing new products, which are all tested and approved by parents before they can carry the seal on the product in stores. I bought a couple of toys that Christmas, because they were new, and they carried the PTPA seal. And I ever so slowly rooted through the products that had come home with me from the conference and – much to my great joy – I found some hair and beauty products. They each had the PTPA seal on them. I pulled them out and hid them away from my daughters who try to use all my most prized possessions on their own skin and hair. Then, one by one, I used them and they were just for me. Perfection. Better quality hair care products than I had used before and they tamed unruly curls. They far surpassed others I have tried over the years. The hair products were perfect and made for curly haired girls like me. The seal was like Sharon saying: “This is what I use; this  is what I trust.” The lip balm is the only product I use at night, every night. There are many great and innovative children’s products and toys and events and games on PTPA and I can’t wait to dig in and test and review as many as they will send. There are many parents I admire hanging out over there chatting at PTPA, where the conversation is always interesting. There is Christine Lee McNaughton, a truly sweet and fabulous blogger, aka @chancesmommy and a bevvy of new voices join the chorus often. There are regular on line chats and great brands and prizes available too. But, initially the thing that hooked me was the hair. The PTPA winning hair and beauty products that came home in the mass of swag from the conference were just for me. I use them passionately still because they work so well.
Do you want to be an insider like me?
Join PTPA. Sign up to be a tester. Fill out the application to become a product tester and then make sure you really work hard on the profile process. It should be at 100 % before you click submit. Also follow PTPA on Facebook and Twitter. Get to know a few of the familiar voices that are hanging out chatting about parenting and brands. Follow @dogpaddling and engage all of us during the chats. They are easy to join, I promise. They are fun and I have even won a prize or two over the last couple of years. This Christmas, or back to school season check PTPA media first for what is hot before you hit the mall or the on line stores.
I have reviewed a few great PTPA winning products on my blog. Adult Essentials adult gummy vitamins is one product. And I hosted a twitter party for Heather Manley, author of Human Body Detectives series.
The other day I was at Walmart and spied a great new kitchen gadget that wore a shiny PTPA seal that I recognized clearly. I was shopping with some relatives, but I filed it away in my memory for the next time I am in the store. I want to know more about the kitchen tool because it looked appealing to me and because of the PTPA seal. To me, the PTPA seal is like having one of my best friends standing beside me whispering into my ear: “You have to have that. It is IN, it is excellent quality and I love mine.”
What better endorsement is there?

Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.