Sweet, Sweet Sunday

It’s Beginning to Look A lot Like Christmas

Hard to believe that Christmas is already here…again…

Seems like just yesterday that  we were putting the tree up and taking it down…

 

Also hard to believe that I’m turning fifty next week also…but more on that later…

 

Anyway, I recently sat down to start thinking about what to get my three daughters this year and remembered the list of  subscription boxes that I had compiled quite a while back…

So I thought that it might be a great time to look back at this list and see if things have changed since I first posted this…

 

Subscription boxes give you a chance to explore new beauty and makeup products from a number of popular and up and coming beauty and cosmetic brands without cramming your drawers and cabinets full of products that you buy at full price only to find that their claims to fame just weren’t true.

 

Non-Vegan Options

Ten possible options are listed here…I’m still trying to decide which is the best option…so if you have any advice, let me know…


1.  Allure Beauty Box

  • What it will cost you…$15 a month
  • What you will get…five or six deluxe-sized samples from major high-end brands like Benefit and Alterna and innovative newcomers all chosen by an Allure magazine editor…plus a special Allure mini-magazine
  • What others like you are saying…Review


2.  Beauty Army

  • What it will cost you…$12 per month
  • What you will get…your choice of options targeted to your own goals, such as creating a natural look or all-out glam, based on your stated profile
  • What others like you are saying…Review
  • What else you should know…if nothing strikes your fancy one month, you can go ahead and skip it, at no charge


3.  Beauty Box 5

  • What it will cost you…$12 per month or $30 per quarter or $99 per year
  • What you will get…four or five deluxe or full-size samples from a blend of under-the-radar brands such as Becca, Skyn Iceland, Supergoop…and green lines like Blum Naturals and Weleda
  • What other like you are saying…Review
  • What else you should know…samples tend to be more useful, such as  Smith’s Rosebud Salve and sunscreen wipes, instead of the trendy or ultraluxe?..also oxes are often customized for your stated skin tone, complexion issues, hair color, and beauty “personality”

 4.  BeautyFix

  • What it will cost you…$24.95 per month
  • What you will get…six or more deluxe travel-size to full-size makeup, skincare and haircare products usually valued around the $100 mark from dermatologist-approved skincare brands such as DDF, Glytone, Vichy…natural and organic choices…high-end makeup and hair care with a problem-solving slant, such as Peter Thomas Roth plumping mascara and Nick Chavez body-building clay for hair
  • What others like you are saying about it…Review
  • What else you should know… spin-off club of online giant Dermstore.com

5. Birchbox

  • What it will cost you…$10 per month
  • What you will get…four or five beauty samples, all picked to match your beauty profile, including one actually chosen by you yourself, from brands such as Dr. Jart+, Kérastase, Kiehl’s and Stila…along with one lifestyle item, such as stationery or tea
  • What others like you are saying about it…Review
  • What else you should know…referring friends and leaving feedback will both earn you purchase points good towards full-size products in the Birchbox shop…also selections are tailored to your responses to questions about hair or skin type and concerns and your stated level of makeup proficiency

6.  Boxycharm

  • What it will cost you…$21 per month
  • What you will get…over $100 worth of full-size beauty and makeup products
  • What others like you are saying about it…Review
  • What else you should know…if you are not sure how to use a product, go to YouTube for tutorials and reviews…also, subscribers get “charms” for reviewing products and referring friends that can be redeemed for more products.

7.   Glossybox

  • What it will cost you…$60 per quarter..$111 semi-annually…$210 per year
  • What you will get…five luxurious beauty products from more than 400 niche, high-end, and emerging brands…such as Oscar de la Renta, Burberry, and Fresh…personalized according to age, skin, hair type, and “overall style
  • What others like you are saying…Review

8.  Ipsy

  • What it will cost you…$10 per month
  • What you will get…”Glam Bags” containing five full-size makeup samples and beauty “tools”…ranging from high-end, mid-range, and drugstore brands, including Benefit, Josie Maran, and Urban Decay…valued at $40 or more…selected at least in part according to your fave brands and the style profile you choose
  • What others like you are saying…Review
  • What else you should know…co-founded by makeup artist and YouTube star Michelle Phan…online video tutorials to help you re-create specific looks using that month’s picks

9.  MUSTHAVE.POPSUGAR.COM

  • What it will cost you…$39.95 per month…$109.85 per quarter… $214.70 per 6 months
  • What you will get…a mix of the best of the best in fashion, beauty, home, fitness and food inspired by that specific time of year…the most recent box contained items like a fashionable scarf, coffee mug, lunch box, lip balm and more
  • What others like you are saying…Review

10.  Play by Sephora

  • What it will cost you…$10 per month
  • What you will get…five good sized skin care, makeup, and hair care samples from high-end brands and some of their own branded products
  • What others like you are saying…Review

 

 

Now for ten organic and cruelty-free subscript[ion boxes…

Organic subscription boxes can introduce women like you and me to those certified-organic skincare products that best cleanse, tone, exfoliate and moisturize our skin without using any of these noxious artificial chemicals or additives.


1.  Bare Bliss Box

  • What it will cost you…$49.99
  • What you will get…four to six samples
  • What others like you are saying…

2.  Glowing Beets

  • What it will cost you… $29.95 per month
  • What you will get…three or four deluxe-sized samples or full-size beauty products
  • What others like you are saying…Review

3.  Good Being Box

  • What it will cost you… $21 per month
  • What you will get…a mix of full and deluxe size samples customized to your profile
  • What others like you are saying…Review

4.  Honest Beauty

  • What it will cost you…$50 per month
  • What you will get…three full-size items
  • What others like you are saying…Review


5.  LaRitzy

  • What it will cost…$24.99 per month
  • What you will get…a mix of full-size and deluxe sized samples
  • What others like you are saying…Review

6.  Love Goodly

  • What it will cost you…$29.99 every other month
  • What you will get…full size “premium” products
  • What others like you are saying…Review

7.  Petit Vour

  • What it will cost you…$15 per month
  • What you will get…four samples, some of which may be full-size
  • What others like you are saying…Review

  

8.  Terra Bella Box

  • What it will cost you…$37.95 per month
  • What you will get…5-6 small-batch natural beauty items
  • What others like you are saying…


9.  Vegan Cuts Beauty Box

  • What it will cost you...$18.50 per month or $39.95 per quarter
  • What you will get…four to seven products including at least one or two full-size products
  • What others like you are saying…Review

10.  Yuzen

  • What it will cost you…$33 a quarter
  • What you will get…full-sized samples along with a non-beauty item like chocolate
  • What others like you are saying…Review

 

Advertisements
Sweet, Sweet Sunday

No Shave November

This month is No-Shave November…

But being the wife of a Marine and having been on public transportation or in other tight spaces in too many foreign countries with armpit hair hanging to their waists if not even longer.

I say the more hair you can shave, the better off you are…

Wouldn’t everyone—male or female—feel so much better if they had well-shaven, silky-smooth skin on their legs, armpits, bikini area…

The first step in getting a perfect shave is tol find the perfect razor…

But to get the best results, you first need a quality razor….Benefits of using a quality razor, as opposed to a cheaper razor, include…

  • saving you money in the long run
  • reducing the risk of skin irritation and razor burn
  • giving you better results for your efforts
  • Factors to consider when choosing the “perfect” razor include…
  • whether or not the razor comes into contact with your skin too much,
  • if the razor creates a close enough shave
  • how much control you have over the razor so that you can avoid accidentally cutting yourself
  • if there are conditioning and smoothing strips that will moisten the area before the actual razor blades pass over the skin and help avoid any skin irritation that might result from shaving

There is much debate as to whether disposable or refillable razors are best.

  • Disposable razors…Disposable razors are a lot cheaper, but they aren’t always a good value over refillable versions.
  • Refillable razors…Even though refillable razors are typically going to be more expensive than disposable ones, they have a longer useful lifespan than disposable ones and cost less to replace. Refillable razors are also typically made with higher quality blades and handles.

Personally I have found the best razors to buy are the Gillette Swirl HydroSilk, Gillette Venus Embrace, Schick Hydro Silk Trim Style Moisturizing Razor, and Gillette Fusion ProGlide.

Electric razors, such as this Panasonic ES2207P Ladies Electric Shaver, are another option for shaving. These razors reduce the risk of getting cuts, burns, and nicks. They are especially great for women with sensitive skin.

Vegan Shaving Creams

Our goal now is to make or purchase a fragrance-free, relatively inexpensive shaving cream that goes on smooth, leaves your legs moisturized without clogging up your razor, and nourishes and prote

Most of the typical commercial brands of shaving cream almost al; contain many animal byproducts.

Fortunately there are a number of excellent shaving creams that actually do meet the needs of even the choosiest vegan.

When shopping for a vegan shaving cream, there are four key factors to consider…

1. Ingredients…Choosing natural and organic ingredients is always a good idea because these products have no harsh chemicals, pesticides, or synthetic ingredients that might be absorbed into your skin.

2. Scent...The scent that you choose is simply a matter of personal preference, but if you are going to use a scented shaving cream, you’re typically better off choosing a lighter, less noticeable fragrance…a shaving cream that contains essential oils, not whatever the heck the word “fragrance” might mean on the package.

3. Texture...If you are truly committed to doing your part to create and maintain a safer, cleaner planet, you will want to avoid typical foamy shaving creams. The chemicals, hydrocarbons, and compressed gases that are released when creating that foam have been shown to be unhealthy for our environment.

4. Volume...The amount of shaving cream that you want to purchase at one time and the size of the shaving cream containers depends on many factors—travel regulations, desire to sample a new product without having to buy a large container you are never going to use, how often you take showers and shave, how many people will be using the product, and any savings that can be enjoyed by purchasing in bulk.

A few of the vegan shaving creams available are…

  • 100% Pure Seaweed Vegan Shaving Cream
    Avalon Organics Cream Shave
    Dr. Bronner’s Organic Shaving Soap
    Kiss My Face Moisture Shave

The following recipe for homemade shaving cream would be another great option because of the health benefits of its ingredients. Ingredients such as…

Coconut Oil...Coconut oil is a great moisturizer that contains lots of anti-aging benefits and protects the skin from free radicals.

Raw Shea Butter...Raw shea butter is extremely moisturizing and provides immediate softness and smoothness. It is also a significant source of anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor promoting compounds.

Carrier Oil…There are several options available as far as the oil to use when making your shaving cream. These include…

  • Grapeseed oil is a great source of vitamin E and moisturizing fatty acids.
  • Jojoba oil is great for combatting skin scarring, fatty tissues, and facial lines.
  • Olive oil is great at preventing dry skin and contains moisturizing vitamin E.
  • Sweet almond oil is great for dark circles.

Liquid Castile Soap...Liquid castile soap is an all-natural chemical-free soap, and adding it to your shaving cream provides a bit of texture so that the shaving cream is more effective..

Essential Oils...There are also several options as to essential oils to add to your shaving cream. Popular essential oils to use include…

  • Frankincense helps improve circulation, lowers symptoms of arthritis, and helps decrease muscle aches.
  • Lavender oil is a soothing oil that restores skin complexion, slows aging with its powerful antioxidants, and improves eczema and psoriasis.
  • Peppermint oil gives a cooling sensation.
  • Tea tree oil is a good antiseptic if you should cut yourself.

Homemade Shaving Cream…makes about two cups

  1. 1C coconut oil
  2. 1C shea butter
  3. 6Tbsp oil—olive, jojoba, sweet almond, or grapeseed
  4. 6Tbsp liquid castile soap

Melt shea butter and coconut oil over the lowest heat setting on the stove. Stir occasionally until fully melted. Add oil. Stir until fully blended. Remove from heat. Transfer mixture to a medium-sized jar. Refrigerate overnight or until solid. Remove from fridge into mixing bowl. Whip using a hand mixer or stand mixer for about four minutes. Add castile soap. Whip until fully combined. Spoon shaving cream into a glass jar with a lid. Store in a cool, dry place.

Now let’s take a look at shaving subscription clubs…

Shaving subscription clubs can help you save money, save time, and get the highest quality shaving and beard grooming products on the market for one low price, delivered straight to your door every month.

These shaving subscription boxes will make you love shaving every morning, more and more every month.

From high quality shaving creams and moisturizers, to balms and skin soothers, these shaving clubs have it all.Below, you’ll discover some of the best monthly shaving boxes available…

1.Bevel Shave System

  • Cost: $29.95 a month
  • What you get: Bevel is unique in the fact that it helps people of color shave without having to worry about razor bumps and irritation. Every 3 months you’ll receive the complete Bevel Shave System delivered to your door.

2. Birchbox Men

  • Cost: $10 a month
  • What you get: With Birchbox Man, you’ll receive awesome, high-quality shaving and grooming products delivered to your door every month. Inside every Birchbox Man box, you’ll get 5 grooming product samples such as shampoo, beard oils, moisturizers, body wash, hair gel, and so much more

3. Dollar Beard Club

  • Cost: $1 plus shipping.
  • What you get: With the Dollar Beard Club, you’ll get all natural products such as oils, balm, wax, growth accelerators, and more. The way it works is that you build a kit which includes choosing an oil, an essential, a shower item, an accelerator, and a accessory. However, you can always just pick a single product and only have that in your kit. Then you’ll be sent those products every month until you cancel! This is a cool box to give as a gift.

4. Dollar Shave Club

  • Cost: $1-$9 a month
  • What you get: Probably the most popular shave club out there, Dollar Shave Club offers 3 different razors to choose from (the humble twin, the x which can also be used for women, and the executive). Then from there you can choose how often you’ll like blades to be delivered to your home

5. Gillette Shave Club

  • Cost: $16.99 – $22.45 a month
  • What you get: With the Gillette Shave Club, you’ll get your choice of razor, 4 blades, and shaving cream delivered as often as you’d like.

6. Harry’s Shave Club

  • Cost: $8 – $24 a month depending on your plan
  • What you get: Harry’s is by far the best shave club out there when in comes to quality and affordability. With Harry’s, you’ll get quality blades for half the price delivered how often you’d like. Once you finish your free trial, you have the option to get blades or blades and gels delivered based on your shaving frequency

7., Morgan;s

  • Cost: $8-$80 a month depending on what products you want included in your box.
  • What you get: When you join Morgans, you’ll get premium bathroom basics without the outrageous prices. All you have to do is choose what you’d like and they’d be delivered straight to your door monthly. Products include shampoo, conditioner, hand and body wash, moisturizer, deodorant, bar soap, shaving handle and blades, shaving cream, toothbrushes, and toothpaste. Plus all their products are vegan!

8. Wet Shave Club

  • Costs: $29.99 a month
  • What you get: Each month you’ll receive a box of awesome shaving items that will help you have the best shave possible. Plus in your first box, you’l get a free razor and shave brush!
Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Pumpkins, Pumpkins, Everywhere…You Can Even Use Them on Your Hair

  • Hard to believe, but Halloween has already come and gone….and Thanksgiving and Christmas are just lurking around the corner. My, how this year has so quickly flown by.
    And for those of us who totally love SL, pumpkin Oreos, and anything else that has pumpkin flavoring in it, one of the most wonderful times of the year is drawing to a close as everything shifts from pumpkin to peppermint.
    But there are ways to enjoy that pumpkin vibe all year long.
    No, I’m not talking about the processed, packaged stuff that comes in a can and will probably be still sitting in your pantry this time next year, at least in time for holiday canned food drives.
    What I’m talking about is using pumpkin-scented health and beauty products and walking around smelling like you just carved, cooked, and ate The Great Pumpkin…smelling like pumpkin from head and shoulders…knees and toes.
    As far as the “beauty benefits” of pumpkins, pumpkins are packed with vitamins and minerals—such as the ones mentioned in the previous post Pumpkins…The
    Why?!
    Let’s take another look at a few of the nutrients contained in pumpkin, but this time from the view of what pumpkin can do for your skin and hair.

     

     

    Carotenoids…Carotenoids—such as alpha-carotene and beta-carotene—are the antioxidants responsible for giving pumpkins their bright orange color. Pumpkins can help reverse UV damage and improve skin texture.

     

    Minerals…Minerals—such as potassium, copper, magnesium, manganese, and iron-that are found in pumpkin. Two of the important minerals as far as hair and skin are…

     

    Potassium…Potassium helps promote healthy hair and regrowth.

     

    Vitamin A…encourages hair growth

     

    Vitamin B…Pumpkin is a good source of most of the B vitamins—including niacin, riboflavin, B6 and folate. This makes pumpkin great for treating acne, improving circulation, and increasing cell turn over and renewal.

     

    Vitamin C…Vitamin C helps prevent wrinkles and skin cancer, promotes collagen production, and improves skin tone and elasticity….also strengthens hair follicles.

     

    Vitamin E…stimulates blood circulation in the scalp, which then promotes hair growth)

     

    Zinc,,,prevents and treats flaking, irritation, and itching scalp

Shampoo...Many companies have started adding pumpkin shampoo to their product lists claiming that the shampoo will help your hair grow, moisturize, and kill frizz. A few options to try that actually smell like pumpkin and might help with PSL withdrawals include…
  • Acure Organics Mega Moisture Shampoo
  • EcoLove Shampoo Orange Collection
  • Ecosevi Pumpkin Seed Shampoo
  • Good Earth Beauty Pumpkin Chai Restorative Shampoo.

 

 

 

Conditioner

As far as conditioner, one of your best options is to make your own. To make your own conditioner, combine the following ingredients…

  • 1/2C pumpkin puree
  • 1/4C yogurt
  • 2Tbsp honey
  • 1Tbsp coconut oil

A great store-bought option would be this conditioner by Sexy Hair Concepts.

 

Pumpkin Hair Serum…This hair serum helps you deal with dead ends and fly-away’ away hair.  The apricot seed oil is a lighter oil than the pumpkin oil and keeps the pumpkin oil from making your hair feel so “weighty.”

Here’s how…Combine one part pumpkin seed oil with two parts apricot seed oil. Lightly spritz water in your hair. Comb the pumpkin serum through your hair.

Pumpkin Hot Oil Treatment…Combine equal amounts of coconut oil and pumpkin puree. Heat on top of your oven over low heat. Let cool slightly. Apply to soaking wet hair, working from the ends to the roots. Wrap hair in a heot towel, Wait twenty minutes. Rinse well.

Pumpkin Oil Hair Vitamin Mist…Fill a spray bottle with two ounces of pumpkin seed oil and 1Tbsp coconut oil. Fill the bottle with distilled water. Shake before each use.

Pumpkin Puree Hair Mask…Believe it or not, the cinnamon that this hair mask contains is there not only because it makes the hair mask small awesome, cinnamon also helps with circulation and promotes better hair and scalp.

Mix together…

  • 1tsp argan oil
  • ½C pumpkin puree
    2tsp coconut or olive oil (unrefined)
    1tsp cinnamon
    1 Vitamin E capsule

Apply the concoction on your hair, making sure to cover your strands from tip to roots. Put on a shower cap to keep the goop from dripping all over while you wait. Wait at least 25 minutes before shampooing your hair. Use this mask once or twice a week to help make your hair soft, shiny and silky.

Pumpkin Seed Oil Hair Mask

1 Tbsp. pumpkin seed oil
1/2 apple puree
1 tbsp. shea butter
1 egg

Process half of the apple in your blender. Add shea butter and pumpkin seed oil. Whisk egg by itself. Stir the egg into the mixture. Apply to freshly washed hair. Leave in for twenty minutes. Rinse out.

Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Cruelty-Free and Vegan Dental Care Products Review—Don’t Forget to Floss

As I have been making this lifestyle change over the last six months, I have learned to check the labels of products for certain keywords—such as certain ingredients that you want to avoid, and certain other ingredients that you are actually looking for.
As far as ingredients found in dental hygiene products, here are a few to avoid and why…

  • Artificial Colors, Flavors, Sweeteners
  • Benzoic Acid
  • BPA
  • Fluoride
    Glycerin
    Gluten
  • GMO
  • Parabens
  • Preservatives
  • Saccharin
  • SDS
  • SLS
  • Sorbitol
  • Sugar
    Sulfate

Vegan Friendly Ingredients to Look For

  • Aloe Vera…Aloe vera gently cleans the gums and soothes any irritation or infection which may be present
  • Baking Soda…This is used in many DIY types of mouthwash and toothpaste and is great for getting rid of stubborn plaque and also acts as a whitener for your teeth.
  • Cinnamon…Cinnamon freshens your breath and keeps the mouth clean.
  • Clove…Clove is used by dentists as a painkiller as it contains eugenol, and they will usually apply this to the teeth while pulling a tooth or applying a filling. As well as an anesthetic, it is also an antiseptic so wipes out germs.
  • Echinacea…Echinacea is a natural antiseptic that fights off nasty bacteria and prevents gum disease.
  • Grapefruit Extract,,,Grapefruit extract prevents tartar build up and bad breath.
  • Myrrh…Myrrh is used to help prevent bad breath, as well as providing a powerful soothing agents for any irritation or inflamed gum problems.
  • Pomegranate Extract….Pomegranate extracti helps prevent iplaque.
  • Peppermint…_Peppermint also provides a fresh, minty taste, fights halitosis, and prevent  bad breath.
  • Perilla Seed Extract…Perilla seed extract prevents  tartar build up and bad breath.
  • Spearmint…Besides from providing that fresh, minty taste we all know and love- these oils are great for fighting halitosis and preventing bad breath.
  • Tea Tree Oil,…Tea tree oil acts as a natural antiseptic, fights harmful bacteria, and leads to a healthier smile.

 

Most of your typical toothpastes—including .Aquafresh, Colgate, Crest, Aim, Sensodyne—–are not vegan or cruelty-free.

Toothpastes that actually are cruelty-free and vegan include…

  • David’s Natural
  • Dessert Essence
  • Dr. Bronner’s
  • Hello Oral Care
  • JASON
  • Nature’s Gate
  • Simply Sooney
  • Uncle Harry’s
  • VITA-MYR

 

 

Mouthwash

Even though the most common toothpastes are not vegan, most mouthwashes are. Yet many of the most popular brands of mouthwash are owned by companies that do still test their products on animals.

Here is a list of available mouthwashes that do not have any link to animal testing and byproducts.

  1. Dale Audrey’s Oral Pulling Rinse…The active ingredients in this mouthwash are neem and myrrh, both natural antiseptics that help protect your teeth and prevent infections.
  2. Eco-Dent Ultimate Daily Rinse…The active ingredients in Eco-Dent Ultimate Daily Rinse are twelve different essential oils, echinacea is used as a natural antiseptic to fight off nasty bacteria and prevent gum disease., and baking soda.
  3. JĀSÖN Healthy Mouth® Tartar Control Cinnamon Clove Mouthwash…The active ingrefdients in this mouthwash are grapefruit and perilla seed extracts, both of which prevent  tartar build up and prevent bad breath….clove and cinnamon, both of which freshen your breath and keep the mouth clean….aloe vera, which gently cleans the gums and soothes any irritation or infection which may be present…tea tree oil, which acts as a natural antiseptic, fights harmful bacteria, and leads to a healthier smile.
  4. Eco-Dent Ultimate Daily Rinse…The active ingredients in Eco-Dent Ultimate Daily Rinse are twelve different essential oils, echinacea is used as a natural antiseptic to fight off nasty bacteria and prevent gum disease., and baking soda.

Floss

Most dental flosses are not vegan for two reasons…first of all, many dental care products are tested on animals and therefore are not “cruelty-free”…secondly many brands of dental floss are coated with beeswax, which isn’t considered vegan because it’s made by exploiting honey bees.

Alternatives that are cruelty-free include…

  1. Eco-Dent…Mint, Cinnamon…No Beeswax, No Mineral Wax
  2. Nature’s Answer…Wintermint, Cool Mint, Cinnamint….Alcohol Free, SLS Free, Fluoride Free, Gluten Free, Soy Free, Perservative Free
  3. RADIUS…Mint, Cranberry…Gluten Free, Paraben Free, non-GMO, No Artificial Colors, Sweeteners, Perservatives, Phthalates
  •  

Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Cruelty-Free and Minimalistic Makeup for Fall

I admit, I’m definitely not a makeup artist or fashionista, but I am a woman from Mississippi…

And being a woman from Mississippi, there are two things that all of us, or at least all of us that were born in my generation in my neck of the woods were expected to learn…

First of all, how to cook…which I’m having to unlearn all of the bad habits and cooking techniques that I grew up with now that my husband has been diagnosed as having type 2 diabetes…

And secondly, how to always look your best….even when you’re simply going to Walmart…

After all, you never know who you might run into…

 

This year one of my main goals has been to live a simpler and more minimalistic lifestyle…in all aspects of my daily routine, starting with my daily makeup routine.

BUT…

I have found myself with three different trains of thought as to buying makeup…

  1. Brand Loyaty
  2. Cheap as Dirt
  3. Cruelty-Free

Regardless which of these three options I continue to pursue in the months, and even years, ahead…

There is one main thing that I want to be consistent…My one big “key word” for the year…

Minimalism

 

So in this post I am going to talk about what makeup trends I have spotted this fall,, the different stess involved in each category, and which products I am considering adding to my makeup bag sometime soon.

 

1.  Face Primer..Primers seal in your skincare products, help fill in pores and fine lines, create a smooth surface on which to apply your foundation, and help your makeup last all day. Look for an oil-free, water-based primer…Cruelty-Free Pick…Vapour STRATUS SOFT FOCUS SKIN PERFECTING PRIMER

2.  Foundation..Opt for an oil-free foundation. Oil-based products improve the risk of your makeup “sliding” out of place. Use a beauty blender to apply light layers to create a smooth, natural look…Cruelty-Free Pick…Mineral Fusion Pressed Powder Mineral Foundation

3.   Concealor…Concealor should be lightweight and actually help get rid of undereye dark circles, allergy-induced redness, and occasional breakouts…not simply hide them…And of course, a natural concealor should contain no skin-irritating synthetics, chemicals, wax, preservatives, parabens, phthalates, or talc…all without looking dry or cakey.

Which concealor you use depends on what problem you are trying to cover…

  • To cover bluish undereye circles, use a yellow-tone concealer.
  • To cover brown or yellowish circles, peach-tone concealers are best
  • To cover fine lines around your eyes, pat moisturizer all around the eyes, using your ring finger. Allow it to sink in for a few minutes before applying concealer. Creamy, hydrating concealers work best for the delicate and dry skin around the eyes.
  • To cover redness, choose a concealer that matches your skin exactly.
  • To cover pimples, dot a pigment-rich, opaque concealer directly on the pimple. Sweep the brush around the base of the pimple, using tiny strokes in order to precisely blend the concealor without using your fingers.

Using Concealor..

  1. Place three tiny dots of concealor under the eyes from the inner corners to the centers, using a synthetic concealer brush. A synthetic brush is best for applying concealor. Applying concealer with your fingers results in creasing and caking. Applying concealer with a natural bristles results in applying too much color..
  2. Blend in with your fingertips.
  3. Apply a lightweight, loose translucent powder to set the concealor and prevent any shimmer and shine…Pressed powder can draw attention to fine lines by settling into creases.

4. Powder...A lightweight translucent pressed setting powder sets your makeup for longer wear and can easily be taken with you and used to soak up any excess oil throughout the day….Cruelty-Free Option.. Jane Iredale pure Matte Finish Powder.

5. Setting Spray...Setting sprays seal your makeup for a very natural look that lasts all day and refresh your makeup throughout the day…Cruelty-Free Option …Dr. Axe’s DIY Makeup Setting Spray with Lavender Oil

1.  Mix together…

  • 1Tbsp aloe vera gel 
  • 1Tbsp witch hazel
  • 5 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 2½Tbsp purified water

2.  Funnel into glass spray bottle. Shake well.

3.  To use…Hold the bottle a few inches away from the face and mist the face with one or two pumps of this spray after applying your makeup…Allow it to air dry.

6. Blotting Papers...Blotting papers may soak up oils during the day, but often take off more of your makeup than you would probably like. Try using Beauty Blender’s Bloterazzi Sponge instead.

7.  Blush…As far as blush goes for this fall, the two colors to look for are “earthy” tones”—more specifically peachy-pink and orange….This is great for those of us who want to embrace a “no-makeup” look.

To apply…Concentrate the color on the highest points of the cheekbones to give the face dimension and a more angular shape. Placing blush on the high points of the cheeks instead of the apples.

 

EYES

Eyeshadow

This year there seems to be several trains of thought as to eyeshadow…

  • Glitter
  • Pink
  • Shimmer
  • Statement
  • Tan

1. Glitter…Glitter eyeshadow may be the perfect way to transition from your everyday minimalistic makeup look to a more decadent look that is perfect for the upcoming holiday festivities.

2. Pink…Pink eyeshadow can range from a subtle and practical “neutral” to a wild statement piece. The best way to wear these, or at least for real women walking sidewalks instead of runways would be to think of this as if it were a tan eyeshadow and not a big deal.

3. Shimmer...Shimmer eyeshadow is another festive choice and is way more conservative than glitter eyeshadows.

4. Statement…Focusing on one area, such as your lips or eyes, and keeping the rest of your face with a neutral “no-makeup” look is almost always better than a full armor of makeup. This look offers a tension and contrast that adds interest to your overall look.

Just as higher hair doesn’t make you any closer to God, neither does a full face (“armor”) of makeup indicate that you have put on the “full armor of God.”

5. Tan….Another eyeshadow trend for this fall is tan shadow.  Tan eyeshadow is a practical and classier choice that flatters every woman,

These “tan” shadows offer several great options—such as deep golden tan, deep camel, golden brown, or pale cappuccino.

 

Eyeliner

Black

  • Black eyelinmeri is to eyes what classic red is—well, classic…
  • Black eyeliner has been used ince the days of Cleopatra and is always an excellent choice amd can run the gamut of looks—from dainty and sophisticated, to bold and daring000seductive.
  • Make sure that the black eyeliner that you choose is a deep midnight black.

Colored Eyeliner

  • For minimalists who actually take the time to still ut on makeup, there are two basic choices as far as eyeliner—black, obviously, and colored for those brave minimalists out there…
  • Colored eyeliners brighten your eyes and bring out your natural eye color.
  • Colored eyeliners are also an unexpected way to add some color into a minimalistic everyday makeup look.
  • As far as color, certain colors look better for certain eye colors.
  • Blue eyes look best with blue, pink, purple, and orange
  • Brown eyes look best with light purple, deep green, and navy blue….
  • Green eyes look best with purple, burnt pink, and light blue shades.

Waterlining

  • Waterlining and tighthlining your eyes will help define their natural shape.
  • Waterlining…Waterlining involves using eyeliner to line the tiny, little sliver of skin underneath your eyelashes.
  • Tightlining…Tightlining involves using eyeliner to line the skin above your lower lashes. Tightlining makes your lashes look even thicker.
  • These techniques can be done along with your normal eyeliner, or instead of your normal eyeliner.
  • BUT…
  • Waterlining and tightlining can both make your eyes look smaller….so if you want your eyes to look bigger, forget the idea.

White Eyeliner

  • Using white eyeliner to line your lower lashes, on the other hand, can make small eyes look bigger, and tired eyes look more awake.
  • Regardless if you are waterlining with a colored eyeliner or a white eyeliner, the product and technique will be exactly the same.
  • First of all, what type of eyeliner should you use?
  • Use either a waterproof pencil or waterproof gel/cream, not a liquid> Liquid  liners are too fluid and will not stay on your waterline.
  • If you’re brave, you could dip an angled brush into an eyeshadow that’s the same color as your liner, and press this over the liner that you applied to your waterline. Not sure as a contact wearer, that I’m quite that brave.

 

 

Mascara…As far as mascara for this fall, it run from one extreme to the other…

  • Colored mascara—such as blue or green—may seem a little bit of a very unexpected stretch for minimalists.
  • No Mascara…For minimalists, this is awesome news. ou don’t absolutely have to wear mascara to complete your makeup look. In fact, too much mascara can actually make your makeup look too “made up.”

 

Brows…Thank goodness that pencil-lined arches and bold painted silhouettes are now a trend that has come and gone. Fortunately the latest “trend” calls for undone, au natural, “textured,” bigger-is-better brows….filled in with an eyebrow combs and  brow gel.

 

 

Makeup Tips for Women Who Wear Glasses

Lately I have been walking around barely able to see. I ran out of contacts, so I had to wear my glasses…

But being cheap I had not ordered the bifocals that I should have ordered, and having glasses on, I obviously couldn’t put on reading glasses.

It took about three weeks for me to finally order my contacts and for them to come in.

But in the meanwhile I felt very self-conscious in my glasses, especially at first.

Eyewear makes your eyes the immediate focal point of your face, so it’s imperative to apply your makeup in a way that’s flattering to both your frames and your face.

Less is definitely more. Applying makeup to wear with glasses is not a matter of piling on more and more makeup. Instead it’s about using the right makeup and techniques…things like keeping your eye makeup simple, using a light hand, blending everything carefully, and keeping your makeup tidy, well-defined and as close to “perfect” as possible.

Yet putting on eye makeup can not be thought of as merely a waste of time because any makeup that you apply will simply be hidden behind your glasses.

 

 

LIPS

So in this second segment of trasitioning to  fall, I thought it would be fun to share a few tips on lips…

Even though choosing lip colors is a very personal thing…

When choosing your lip-whatevers, it’s important to consider at least five things…

  • Eye Color
  • Hair Color
  • Lip Color
  • Personality
  • Skin Tone

And being a minimalist, it would be so incredibly easy to stay stuck in a rut and simply wear the same neutral color of Burt’s Bees for the entire rest of my life…

So even though I am becoming more and more minimalistic with each and every trip that I make to Mission Arlington, I still feel a need to have more than one magic wand in my arsenal—including lipsticks, glosses and hybrid lip stains—to help create different looks for both everyday life and special occasions.

Typically lip “stuff” falls into the following four color groups…

  • Clsassic Red
  • Colorful
  • Neutrals
  • Pinks

 1.Classic Red…Bold red lips are the classic icon of everything from being the perfect go-to accent for the LBD to being the most-important accessory of Hollywood legends.

Red lips are magical and mysterious, are great for waking up a tired look, brightens up your smile, and giveyou the appearance of whiter teeth.

All that being said, my three choices for “classic red” lips this fall are…

2. Colorful…Bold and colorful lipsticks—such as fuchsia pink, bold orange, or coral—are always fun, sassy, and playful.  Look for a richly pigmented creamy coral lipstick that has the following characteristics…

  • applies opaque in just one coat
  • basically an orange lipstick, yet very close to a neutral
  • bright, bold, and brilliant
  • gives good staying power
  • super hydrating

One of the best ways to wear the look this fall would be with the rest of your makeup having that “no–makeup look” that all minimalists love. The bold lips serve as a stark contrast with your bare skin.

  1. Brand Loyalty…Best 7 Clinique Options
  2. Cruelty-Free…Pacifica Lipsticks
  3. Discount Bin…Best Drugstore Red Lipsticks

3. Neutrals

One of the biggest trends this fall as far as makeup is concerned is the neutral lip. This means that even Mississippi women can dare to go to Walmart without wearing any liner, gloss, lipstick, or anything like that at all.-

So how’s that for true minimalism?

Neutral lipstick—such as matte shades of browns, light pinks, mauve, tan, and caramel—are the go-to lip choice for everyday life.

And needless to say you always take your own lips with you everywhere you go—with or without makeup.

Make sure that the neutral lipstick that you choose is not too matte or too beige…and one that you can apply even without a mirror.

  1. Brand Loyalty….Clinique
  2. Cruelty Free…Best Cruelty-Free Lipsticks
  3. Discount Bin…Best Drugstore Neutral Lipsticks

4. Pinks…Pink lips supposedly make you look younger….So from now on, I think that I will simply always wear pink lipstick.

And if pink lipstick makes you look younger, why not go for pink hair also?

Pink lipsticks truly run the gamut—from blush to magenta to burgundy to purple and beyond. This fall the “pink” lipstick of choice is wine. Wine lipstick is compelling, mysterious, and intriguing. Wine lips work great with dark eyes and messy curls or bare skin and nude eyes…

So go ahead and invest in a quality wine lipstick….Brand Loyalty…7 Best Clinique Lipsticks

 

 

Getting Healthy, Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Cedarwood Essential Oil—Great for Your Hair

Cedarwood essential oil is useful for many different concerns—including curing skin problems, preventing hair loss, preventing infections, managing stress, getting rid of any moths and pests from your home, discouraging the growth of mildew, helping to cure illnesses, relieving pain.

Cedarwood essential oils gets many A’s, if not A+’s, for its many different roles, including working as the following…

  • alopecia
  • antibacterial
  • antifungal
  • anti-inflammatory
  • antiseptic
  • antispasmodic
  • anxiety and stress
  • astringent
  • anti-ant (insecticidal)

Alopecia…This is simply another way of saying that cedarwood oil is good for your hair.

Cedarwood essential oil can help you have shinier, healthier-looking hair, especially by working to control dandruff, prevent hair loss, and promote hair growth.

1. Damaged Hair…Cedarwood essential oil has moisturizing properties that can help make your hair stronger and repair any damage you cause to your hair from frequent washing, blowdrying, styling, and so forth.

2. Dandruff…Cedarwood essential oil can help reduce any itching or drying that you might be enduring because of dandruff and other scalp conditions such as seborrhoiec eczema.

Cedarwood essential oil can help prevent seborrhoeic eczema, an infection of the epidermal cells of the scalp that results in having dry, itchy and flaking rashes on your scalp. This infection is caused by the sebaceous glands found in the scalp producing too much sebum.

3. Hair Growth and Loss…Cedarwood oil stimulates and strengthens your hair follicles. Stronger hair follicles contribute to hair growth and help prevent alopecia—which simply means hair loss and thinning hair.

Two of the best ways to use cedarwood essential oil for healthier, shinier hair are…

1. Hot Oil Treatment:…Combine eight drops of cedarwood essential oil with a carrier oil, such as coconut oil. Massage the mixture it into your scalp for about five minutes. Wait twenty minutes before washing the mixture out of your hair.

2. Shampoo... Add a few drops of cedarwood essential oil to your shampoo and conditioner.

Getting Dressed, Getting Healthy, Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Vegan Hair and Skin Care Ideas for Using The Rest of Your Avocados

IMG_4912

Okay, so now we’ve covered about twenty different ways to incorporate avocados into your daily diet, the reasons why you should add avocados to your family grocery list, and the choosing and care of avocados…

But wait…that’s not all…

 

Avocados and Skin Care…Avocados are good for your skin. Avocados are rich in nutrients—such as fat-soluble vitamins monounsaturated fats, various minerals, and essential fatty acids.Avocados have been shown to improve both the health and tone of your skin, as well as  eliminate signs of premature aging. Avocados are especially great for skin that is dry, chapped or damaged.

Many cosmetic manufacturers add avocado to their products for this reason, but given the fact that the avocados that you can purchase from your local grocer or market are relatively cheap, cruelty free, and contain no added synthetic chemicals, why not use real avocados to enjoy the real benefits of using what might be nature’s best moisturizer.

 

 

Avocado Body Scrub…Avocados can be easily paired with many different ingredients to make a healthy body scrub at home. Most of the following scrub ideas can be used not only in the shower as a body scrub, but also as a scrub or mask for your face, depending on the consistency of the second ingredient.

Here are a few ideas…

Almonds….1C smooshed avocado, 1/4C ground almonds…great for dry skin

Coconut…1C smooshed avocado, 1/4C grated avocado…great for healing scars

Coffee…1C smooshed avocado, 3Tbsp coffee granules…great for getting rid of stretch mark

Honey…1/2C smooshed avocado, 1/4C honey…great for dry skin

Lime…1/2 smooshed avocado, juice of 1 lemon, 1tsp baking soda…great for getting rid of tan lines

Oats…1C smooshed avocado, 1C oats…great for acne

Salt…1/2 smooshed avocado, 4Tbsp rock salt….great for exfoliating

Sugar...1C smooshed avocado, 4tsp sugar, 1tsp olive oil…great for acne

Yogurt…1C smooshed avocado, 1C plain Greek yogurt, 1Tbsp salt…great for moisturizing

 

 

Avocados and Hair…Avocados are also great for nourishing dry and damaged hair. The following avocado hair mask include smoothing and moisturizing your locks without weighing down fine hair, adding shine, and restoring natural luster to your hair.

Avocado Hair Mask…1/2 smooshed avocado, 1 egg, 2 drops peppermint essential oil, 2Tbsp olive oil

 

Getting Dressed, Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Articles About Argan Oil…Argan Oil for Your Hair

IMG_5032-0

Sorry, but the last thing that I want to think about after taking my shower…especially since I take one as the very last thing of my day…is having to rifle through a dozen different products for my haircare and skincare needs…let’s keep things simple…

So I simply grab for a bottle of pure argan oil…and use it from head to toe…

I could even do that without my glasses on or my contacts in…which is a good thing because I am legally blind, right?!

Benefits of using Argan oil on your hair include…

  • improving the texture of your hair by making it softer, silkier and shinier
  • making your hair more manageable by helping to tame frizz and fly-aways
  • preventing and repairing protecting your hair from damage caused by the heat of hair dryers, curlers and flat irons…as well as pollution, chemicals and UV rays
  • promoting hair growth because of its vitamin E content
  • repairing split ends
  • stopping dandruff before it causes serious problems
  • moisturizing your hair because of its essential fatty acids content

Regular Use…Depending on the thickness, texture, condition and length of your hair, you may need anywhere from 1 drop to 3 drops. Getting the right amount may take some practice. Start with a drop (or for short hair a ½ drop may do) and warm in your palms before raking your fingers through your hair, paying special attention to your ends. Once complete, add a ½ drop to your fingertips and massage into your scalp. Rub any excess into your face, neck or hands.

Overnight Deep Conditioning Treatment...Using argan oil once a week as a deep conditioner for your hair will amplify its benefits even more. If you have dandruff or dry scalp, you should probably use this as an overnight treatment twice per week until the dandruff is gone.

Warm about seven drops in your hands. Massage into your hair, working from the scalp to the ends. Put on a shower cap. (Not only will this keep your pillowcase free from oil, but it will also help your body’s natural body heat, as retained in the shower cap, to help the oil work more efficiently.)

In the morning, wash your hair, rinsing until all residue is gone.

 

Getting Dressed

My Angle on Tangles

IMG_4860-1
We all want healthy, shiny hair-
-free from common hair problems such as static, grease, and limpness–and are willing to change shampoos, styling products, and even how we blow dry or straighten our hair in order to get it.

But perhaps the real barrier keeping us all from having this beautiful, shiny hair is an everyday mundane task most of us don’t even think about—brushing your hair..

Sure, we all know how to brush our hair…we’ve been doing it for years…But…

Are we all doing it right?

In fact, IS there really a “right” way and a “wrong” to brush your hair?
The answer is “yes,” and the fact is that most of us have been brushing our hair the wrong wYfor our entire lives–down instead of up.

Starting at the top of your head and brushing down our strands is actually bad for hair because this could pull the hair out of the follicle…and might eventually make us all prematurely bald.

Instead we should all be starting to comb or brush our hair at the bottom and brush our way up. Brushing up allows you to tackle tangles along the hair shaft, but without this risk of pulling the follicle out of its root.

To brush your hair in what most of us would call the “wrong” direction, start brushing a few inches from the ends. Once this section is detangled, keep moving up a few more inches at a time and continue brushing sections of hair until you reach the top.

Even though, brushing up your hair like this may feel unnatural at first, if it will keep you from pulling all your hair out…(or at least the hair still left after being with rowdy children or rude co-workers)…wouldn’t this be useful?

But before even trying to detangle your hair, first apply a detangling product. The detangler will make your hair slippery, and the comb will go right through.

 

A spray detangler, such as Not Your Mother’s Detangler Tahitian Garden Flower & Mango, works best for fine hair.

A lotion detangler, such as Paul MItchell Lite Detangler, works best for “average” hair.
After drenching hair with detangler, brush or comb gently. Never yank through a particularly snarled section in an effort to remove any knots.

Instead gently remove any knots with a detangling brush, Tangle Teezer, or  wide-tooth comb.

  
1.  Detangling Brush…The traditional paddle brush is the best type of  brush to use when detangling your hair. This type of brush is strong enough to detangler your hair, but is still gentle because the flexible plastic bristles of the brush are spaced further apart, and these brushes have a padded base. A densely-packed brush, such as a boar-bristle brush, will pull on your hair way too much as you try to detangle your hair.

This EcoTools Detangler Paddle Brush, is a great option for  removing tangles. The EcoTools Detangler Paddle Brush has a sustainable bamboo handle, 100% cruelty-free nylon bristles, large paddle, and a vented cushion to provide maximum detangling with minimal pulling and damage.

2.  Tangle Teezer …The Tangle Teezer is designed with ergonomically designed handle(?!) to fit snugly in your palm and flexible plastic teeth to  make removing tangles and knots quicker, easier, and pain-free… and minimizing hair breakage and cuticle damage.

3.  Wide-Tooth Comb…A wide-tooth comb, such as this Detangling Comb from The Body Shop is a third option. If you are going to use a comb to detNgle your hair, make sure that the teeth are spaced further apart.
And that, my friends, is my Angle on Tangles…

Getting Dressed, Sweet, Sweet Sunday

Air Drying Your Hair—The Lazy Vegan Girl’s Guide to Styling Your Hair

IMG_4860-1

It is important to take care of your hair while it is wet, mainly because this is when your hair is most likely to fall out…and none of us wants our hair to fall out, (even though there are many days when I feel like pulling my own hair out because of stress)…

 

Heat can be your be your hair’s best friend or worst enemy.

Heat can create bouncing curls, waves, and tendrils from an unruly mane or flat, lifeless locks in no time at all…

Heat can also cause serious damage and split ends, make your hair rough and dull and more susceptible to damage and cause your hair to lose moisture faster than it can be reabsorbed from the air, leaving it brittle.

 

And the heat of the hair dryer can be the greatest enemy to the health of your hair.

 

So let your hair air dry naturally if possible, at least partially.

 

Air-drying your hair, instead of blow-drying and heat-styling it, will save you both time spent doing your hair and this risk of damaging your hair.

Here are a few simple secrets to air-drying hair and having it actually look like one great big frizzy mess.


1. Air drying your hair doesn’t mean you should skip product…All hair types should follow up towel drying with a detangling leave-in conditioner,  a protectant spray or cream or a blow-dry serum…combing it  through with a large-tooth comb.

Product will help set the hair, add volume, and reduce frizz and unruliness.

If your hair is on the finer side and lacks a true natural texture, also spritz a sea salt spray at the roots continuing through to the ends to help give the hair more volume. Then leave hair alone until it dries.

 

2.  Apply argan oil to damp hair from the mid-lengths to the tips. This will seal the cuticles, tone down frizz, keep your hair smelling clean and fresh, and enhance natural waves. Two quality ARGAN oils worth checking into are…Josie MaraNatha ARGAN OIL…and Zweena Pure Organic Argan Oil.

 

3. Never brush wet hair…Brushing your hair while wet can stretch the strands, causing damage and splits while it is at its most delicate.
4.  Sleeping on a satin pillowcase will also keep hair from frizzing because satin is gentler on  hair cuticles…Although sleeping on wet hair might initially seem like a good idea,  the combination of cotton pillowcases and tossing and turning as you sleep can cause breakage, frizz and tangles. Avoid it at all costs.

5.  Don’t touch your hair as it dries. …The more you touch, play with, and otherwise mess with your hair, the frizzier it will get.


6.  Never use a hair tie to pull your hair back into a ponytail or bun as it’s drying. This will not only break your hair, but will also result in strange kinks and texture

 

7.  Apply a spritz of dry shampoo to your roots once your hair is dry for extra lift and texture.