Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bath Bliss

It's that time of year again - time for long, warm, relaxing baths! There is nothing more comforting that hopping into the tub for some me time during the fall, however our skin can get a bit tight, dry, and itchy from the warmth of the water as well as the cold, dry air outside and the high temperatures from indoor heaters.

The next time your skin needs hydrated and soothed try this quick and simple recipe.

What you need:

1/2 cup of rose water
(You can buy rose water or make your own by following my recipe which you can find here) 
1/2 cup of coconut milk

Just pour both ingredients into your tub full of warm water, sit back, and relax for the next half an hour. You skin will thank you!

The coconut milk can leave your tub a bit slippery so be extra careful and wipe down your tub afterwards.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Talk About It - Soulstice Nail Colour

It's officially fall which means Soulstice Spa has launched 4 new nail colours named after cities around the world like Napa (a classic red with golden undertones), Nevis (a bright green), and St. Barts (liquid teal). I got to try one of the new shades, as well as one of the older ones.

If you missed my previous reviews of their polishes (which you can read here & here) or are unfamiliar with Soulstice, I would like to take this moment to introduce you to my absolute favorite nail polish. Soulstice Nail Colour is 100% Vegan, cruelty free, non-toxic, 3-free (meaning it does not contain toluene, formaldehyde, or dibutyl phthalate), gluten free and made in the United States. The company also donates a portion of all proceeds to non-profit social and environmental organizations.

In addition to all of the amazing things I mentioned above, the formula of each and every Soulstice polish I have tried is nothing short of amazing. These polishes are easy to work with and apply, long wearing, and totally gorgeous. I seriously cannot say enough good things about Soulstice and their phenomenal nail varnishes.

The new shade I got to test out is called Santa Monica. At first glance Santa Monica just looks like a pretty light purple shade but upon closer inspection it is a soft lavender shade with tons of fun pearlescent sparkle. It's absolutely gorgeous and has so much personality to it. I love the fact that the shimmer can appear purple, pink, blue or white at any given second but sadly it didn't turn out in the photos I took.

(Right - Indoor Light with 2 coats. Left - Natural Light with 2 coats.)

The other shade I got to play with is Cassis, which is my new go-to shade for fall. Cassis is a gorgeous blackberry shade with a very subtle metallic silver shimmer. I really need to learn how to take better nail polish photos because Cassis is so much prettier in person!

I adore everything about Soulstice Nail Colours and highly recommend you check them out. They have so many gorgeous shades and such a wonderful formula. On my to-buy list are Napa, Monterey, and Kyoto. What colors do you have on your wish list?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Fall Applesauce Hand Scrub

My hands are really dry right now, with the changing of the seasons, so I thought a hand scrub recipe would be appropriate for today's post! By the way, Happy first week of fall! This scrub stars applesauce, which is a natural exfoliant that contains calcium, iron, and vitamin A. Apples are hard workers when it comes to fighting bacteria, being an antioxidant and an astringent. It also makes a wonderful and nutritious snack for children of all ages.

What you need:
3 tablespoons of natural applesauce
(you can buy some or make your own)
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of olive oil

Once you have all of the ingredients together, put them into a small bowl or container and mix thoroughly. Massage into your dry hands in the fashion of washing your hands, before rinsing off with warm water. Your hands will look and feel like they have been pampered by a professional. Oh, this scrub also smells incredibly delicious. You'll love it! It's one of my favorite beauty recipes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Talk About It - DeodoMom

Sometimes being a beauty blogger means sharing personal details that might be a bit embarrassing to announce on the internet; which brings me to my next point – I've always had problems with my underarms. What does that mean exactly? Well, I've always had to use clinical strength deodorant because I sweat like a man, especially when it's warm outside. However; deodorant is one of the scariest and most unhealthy personal care products out there. Switching to natural deodorant was a challenge for me though because of my underarm troubles but I finally found one that I like!

The husband and wife team of contacted me and offered me their DeodoMom Jar and Roll-on deodorants (same formula, different applicators). I've tried a lot of natural deodorants with minimal success so I was a bit skeptical but I decided to try it anyway and I'm so glad I did!

The company specializes in toxin-free and hypoallergenic deodorant for pregnant women. Wait, stop! Before we go any further, no I am not pregnant. Their deodorant is also suitable for men, women, and children of any age who are health-conscious. Their deodorant is vegan as well as paraben, fragrance, alcohol, dye, and aluminum free. The deodorant is simply made with magnesium hydroxide and water.

For whatever reason, this stuff really works! I almost gave up on it though because the first few days left me smelling a little less than fresh. To be quite frank, I smelled but then the formula started working for me (I blame this one the purging process). I have been using for over a month now and I'm planning to stick with it. I typically apply once in the morning and once in the evening and I stay clean smelling all day.

I started off by trying the cream in the jar which is applied with your fingers to your armpit much like you would apply moisturizer to your face. It's odd. It doesn't gross me out but it just seems odd to me. I then switched to the roll-on version, which I like a lot better, although they both work. If you apply too much it can leave you with some white marks so just keep that in mind and it takes it a few minutes to dry so you are left with a temporary wet feeling.  If you like fancy packaging you might not like these products since they are very plain and simple, but that honestly doesn't matter to me. The jar costs $10 while the roll-on costs $12.

I also have to add that I cannot vouch for how well it works during a vigorous workout session or strenuous activity, so keep that in mind.

You can find DeodoMom deodorant online by clicking here

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Talk About It - MarieNatie Cosmetics

Today I have a couple of great cosmetics to talk about from a Canadian company called MarieNatie. Marie, the founder of MarieNatie Cosmetics, discovered that many products contain harsh and toxic chemicals so she set out to create her own line of healthy, natural cosmetics. She researched, carefully selected ingredients, and tested and retested formulas until she was confident that she had created the best natural cosmetics available.

All MarieNatie Cosmetics are free from parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes and fragrances, petro-chemicals and phthalates. In addition to creating safe cosmetics MarieNatie is also cruelty free. All of their products are made in Canada.

I got to try out 3 of their products, my favorite of which is a Loose Mineral Eyeshadow in Chocolate. This eyeshadow is made from Titanium Dioxide, Magnesium Stearate, Ultra Silk Mica, Sericite Mica, Kaolin Clay, and Mica. The formula is incredibly smooth, easy to apply, easy to blend, and easy to wear. The color is long lasting and insanely gorgeous! Chocolate is a cocoa brown color with golden shimmer. They have 9 lovely shades but Chocolate was practically made for me! I'm not afraid to say that I'm slightly obsessed.

Next up is one of the most flattering and wearable lip-glosses I have in my collection, which is the MarieNatie Lip Gloss in Sexy Red. This gloss is made of Jojoba Oil, Carnauba Wax, Candelilla Wax, Vitamin E and Vitamin E Acetate, Pomegranate Oil, Sunflower Oil, Grapefruit Seed Oil, Mica, and Essential Oil. It's superbly hydrating, non-sticky, and long lasting. The packaging is almost as lovely as the color. Sexy Red sounds like it might be a bold, deep red but it's actually a sheer slightly rusty orange-red shade that looks very natural on my lips. It isn't overly shiny, and is actually quite subtle. It's absolutely gorgeous and it doesn't irritate my lips in the least bit.

(I'm actually wearing the Chocolate Loose Mineral Eyeshadow and Sexy Red Lip Gloss in this photo)

The last product I got to try out is the Blue Eyeliner, which is my least favorite product. Don't get me wrong, the eyeliner isn't bad, it just isn't phenomenal like the other two products I got to test out. This liner is formulated with Jojoba Oil, Castor Oil, Beeswax, Carnauba Wax, Oxide, and Mica. The problem I have with most natural liners is that they tug, skip and drag but this one is actually pretty smooth. The color is a lovely blue shade and it's very wearable. I just find that I don't reach for this very often, but it is nice and I do like it.

(Swatches of Blue Eyeliner, Sexy Red Lip Gloss, and Chocolate Loose Mineral Eyeshadow)

Overall, MarieNatie Cosmetics are worth trying out. Their products are made of really great ingredients and are high quality cosmetics with a wide variety of gorgeous shades. You can learn more about the company or products by visiting them online, where you can also purchase their cosmetics.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Quick Tip - Longer Lashes

Instead of forking over a ton of cash for pricey lash growth serums just head to your natural health store to pick up some 100% natural and pure Castor oil. Next time you use up a mascara keep the wand and rinse it off using natural soap or shampoo (you can also purchase disposable mascara wands). Dip your mascara wand into some Castor oil every night (and day if you want) and your lashes, or even your brows, will become longer in time and thicker.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Talk About It - Sage Stone Botanicals

When I was contacted by Alyson of Sage Stone Botanicals to test her products and possibly review them I became very excited for a number of different reasons. Sage Stone Botanicals is a small company based out of Eugene, Oregon (one of my favorite cities that I visit often!) that began as a hobby and is now a full-fledged business. Using only natural ingredients, Alyson has created a line of products that includes hand crèmes, liquid hand soap, bath and shower gel, lotion, lip balm and even bug spray and citronella lotion.

Alyson was so generous and sent me several different products to try, all of which I really like! She sent me a few different 2 oz lotions in Unscented, Jasmine, and Milk and Honey. Sage Stone's lotion is formulated with Certified Organic ingredients such as Jojoba Oil, Avocado Oil, Almond Oil, Shea Butter, and Cocoa Butter, to name a few. The formula is smooth, non-greasy, quick to absorb, and hydrating. The scents are lovely, clean, and fresh. You know how much I love my unscented lotions but I also really love the scent of the Milk and Honey. The Jasmine is also really nice. My Mom stole it since she loves florals and this one smells exactly like its namesake!

The next product I really need to share with you is the Citronella Lotion. I was a bit skeptical about it but this stuff is seriously amazing! My family and I went to a mosquito-infested area for a picnic (sounds nice, right?) and ended up with no bites after slathering our skin with this lotion. My Dad is almost always outdoors and he usually gets eaten alive by mosquitoes but his insect problem is no longer an issue thanks to this lotion. He absolutely loves it and he's pretty picky about what he'll use on his skin. I also want to mention that this doesn't smell bad. It smells like citronella, but it's not gross or heavy. This product is now a must have in my home.

The final product I got to try is the Lavender Bath and Shower Gel, which is made of Distilled Water, Certified Organic Sunflower Oil, Coconut Oil, and Jojoba Oil as well as Lavender Essential Oil and Potassium Hydroxide. The scent is lovely since it's a real lavender fragrance and the formula is moisturizing. It gets quite a bit of lather, which I love, and it does a wonderful job of cleansing skin without stripping it.

Check out Sage Stone Botanicals online to learn more about their products, find where you can purchase products if you're also in Oregon, or purchase online.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

DIY Dry Shampoo

Dry shampoo is increasingly popular but I have to say that I have tried a lot of dry shampoos in the past and pretty much hated them all. I recently started experimenting with ingredients to try to make my own dry shampoo powder and I think I hit hair gold!

After grinding the oatmeal into a fine powder, I combined all three ingredients and ground the mixture again just to ensure everything was mixed and fine enough. Then I poured the powder into an old salt shaker (but you can use whatever you have handy. I think a powdered sugar sifter would be even better!). When your hair needs a little freshening up you can just sprinkle some of the powder onto your roots, massage into scalp, let sit for a minute or two, and then brush out.

If you're dark haired you shouldn't worry about having a white or gray ashen residue. I have medium colored hair and don't have any problem with it being visible. I love using this on days when I need to go out and have little time or just don't want to wash my hair – admit it, we all have those days!

Try it out and let me know what you think!