sacred jewels

bb jewelry 1.jpgbb jewelry shells.JPGchunky 3 stone ring :: this ring is extremely sacred to me.  it was one of my first etsy purchases, and vintage purchases, about 4 years ago.  it features 2 amethyst stones of different tones and garnet, which is my birthstone and one of my favorites, on sterling silver.  it was reiki blessed by the seller and gives me strong and positive vibes.  it’s incredibly unique and though i don’t wear it as often as i should it is extremely precious to me and one of the most beautiful pieces i own.bb jewelry ring focus.JPGpink stone pendant :: unfortunately i don’t know anything about this piece.  i bought it while living in boston at one of my favorite shops, flock.  i wish that i knew what type of stone this is – if you know, please share!

sarah&chloe monogram pendant :: i’ve definitely talked about this before.  i bought this formyself a few years ago when i was searching for a gold pendant that would rest slightly lower on my chest than my other dainty necklaces.  this piece looks great worn every day with tee shirts or whatever – it’s very versatile.  i love having my monogram on it and i’m glad i splurged to buy myself this special item.

madewell earrings :: these are actually a new purchase over the last few weeks but i am absolutely obsessed.  they are so unique and fun and me.  they feature a studded backing at the top so they are totally secure in my ears, even though they are slightly heavier than i would normally wear.  i love the worn-in brass of madewell jewelry and the great price point.  i definitely recommend.

mermaidbyhand turquoise moon tide pendant :: this stunning necklace features a huge sleeping beauty turquoise slab with a small brass moon gracing the top right corner.  from the colors to the silver and brass elements, i am absolutely in awe of this piece.  i love all of eliza’s jewels, but this is definitely a sacred piece in my collection.  i love having it around, even if it is not on my body. bb jewelry turquoise focus.JPGdrift/riot sunrise cuff bracelet :: this is actually called the sunday girl cuff, but it is a sunrise to me!  made of brass this cuff is incredibly sturdy but dainty at the same time.  it’s such an unexpected shape and style for me – i’m pretty simply when it comes to bracelets – and it reminds me of my love of sunrises and sunsets.  it harnesses the power of the sun for me, and i feel that strength when i wear it.

misshapen evil eye necklace :: oooh i love a good evil eye!  i have had a couple evil eye necklaces in the past, but this one eclipsed them all when i found it.  i love the odd shape of the pendant and the extremely fine chain.  i got this at a boston store called baubles and lace for really cheap and i just love it so much.  it reminds me of living in boston, being with my sister, and all the hard times and the good times.

salt&summit royston turquoise ring :: this is an amazing turquoise ring, featuring a triangular royston turquoise cab.  royston turquoise is my absolute favorite and the shape of this ring is so unique.  i love the bright sterling of the setting and the etchings that surround the stone.  i wasn’t able to wear this for a while because i had to get it sized, but now that i have it again i have had a hard time not wearing it!  it is so unique and simply beautiful.  bb jewelry turquoise rings.jpgroyston turquoise ring :: this ring is extremely special to me.  i bought it quite a few years ago, and actually picked the stone out myself.  however i really didn’t like the setting it was in, and it just didn’t do the stone justice.  i got in touch with eliza of mermaidbyhand and we came up with a design that i was more happy with.  i sent her the ring and she completely reworked it for me.  i am so in love with what we came up with.  it is simple and sturdy and lets you focus on the stone.  i love the green elements in this stone, and the earthly feel it gives.  this is definitely one of my power pieces. bb jewelry 2.jpgso there you go!  these are some of my favorite pieces of jewelry in my collection.  jewelry is incredibly special to me, and i truly love finding and collecting different pieces.  i truly don’t feel like myself if i’m not wearing any jewelry and it is something that makes me feel safe and secure.  jewelry just speaks to me, and i think with these pieces it is clear why.

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sacred jewels

february picks // better late than never

bb feb picks 3.jpggood hair //

i feel like it is quite rare that i have some actual hair favorites!  this topic and one of these products will be familiar to you if you read this post, but there are some different products too. if you didn’t read that post (which you should. now.), i am pretty lame with my hair and usually just wash with head&shoulders or something comparable, maybe put in some salt spray, and air dry.  but this month i’ve been shaking it up.

step 1: brush.  now i have never been a hairbrusher.  i know that sounds absolutely crazy, but when i brush my hair it gets…big. but lately, i’ve taken to brushing my hair before the shower to get rid of that dreaded rats nest from scarves and coat collars with this brush that i got from urban ($6).  i think it is definitely the combination of pre-shower brushing and this brush that have completely changed how i wash my hair.  my hair feels thicker, stronger, and shinier, and i have much less fallout than i used to.  for winter hair, i’d say those results are pretty amazing.

step 2: wash.  r+co cactus shampoo ($24) has been a full on love this month and will be for a while.  this is the product you will recognize from that previous post.  i don’t use this every time i wash my hair because it is pretty pricey, but i wish i could.  i’ve been popping a little bit of conditioner on the ends of my hair and then lathering up with the cactus, and the results are beachy, summery, untamed, and perfect.

step 3: hair oil.  i have never ever used a hair oil.  that being said, i had my worries about not using full conditioner with the cactus shampoo, so i figured i would pick one up and try it out.  i grabbed the verb ghost oil ($14) the last time i was at sephora because it has great reviews online and is the cheapest they have (of course i didn’t need to get a hair product at sephora, but you know, product junkie).  i was tempted to get the ouai hair oil but it’s a smaller bottle and double the price. anyways, this oil is beautiful.  it is lightweight and not sticky at all, plus smells and feels amazing.  i just put a little drop on my fingers and rub it together, then put the most on my ends and flip my hair over and finger comb with the excess.  i don’t have a lot to base it on, but this oil is amazing!bb feb picks 4.jpggood reads // when i was a kid i used to read 2 or 3 books at a time, and i have found myself doing that again this month.

introducing the honorable phryne fisher & the miss fisher series by kerry greenwood // you all know that i loooooove miss fisher’s murder mysteries the show and now i’m loving the books as well!  i got this one on amazon and it contains the first three miss fisher stories, two of which were turned into episodes.  i do prefer the show version – the characters and storylines are more established – but maybe it’s just because i’m so dedicated to it.  all in all, they are super fun and easy to read and i will probably get them all!  i love having a series to complete.  i have made my way through 6 of the books in the series and am starting number 7.

an extraordinary theory of objects by stephanie lacava // i think i got this book while traveling in paris a few years ago, but it has been gathering dust on my shelf since then (honestly i can’t remember the exact details of where this came from).  i decided to bring it with me on my most recent travels and it was such a lovely companion.  this memoir is the beautiful and very striking story of the author as a young girl, discovering and dealing with her depression when her family is uprooted and moved to france.  it was tragic but hopeful and a very special read.

lolly willowes by sylvia townsend warner // i signed up for a book of the month subscription, and this was offered as an add-on for my first box.  it’s actually the first ever book of the month book, from 1926!  right up my alley, very jane austen-esque.  it is about a middle-aged woman who, after a life of being taken care of by her family and not being able to go her own way, leaves it all behind to follow her heart.  i highly recommend, and i recommend book of the month as well!  i just chose my book for march today and i think it will arrive shortly.

old magazine favorites // i love rereading and getting reinspired from my collection of magazines.  some of my favorites that i looked at over and over this month were some old editions of frankie, suitcase, surfista, and howl.  there’s nothing quite as beautiful to me as an independently-produced magazine.

good brands //

w3ll people // i have picked up three w3ll people products this month and am using all of them daily.  i have previously tried their mascara and concealer and while i didn’t love either one, i do love the ethos of the brand.  the first product i got was the bio brightening powder ($21.99) which is a beautiful slightly mattifying but glow inducing setting powder.  i had been on a search for the perfect setting powder and i think i found it!  at the same time i also picked up the bio bronzer loose powder ($21.99) as i’ve been a little bored with my bronzing options and this guy has great reviews.  it’s a really nice universal shade that gives a very realistic hint of bronze to my skin.  slightly more recently i purchased the narcissist foundation stick (shade 0, pale ivory) ($28.99) which is a gorgeous cream foundation stick with extremely light, dewy coverage.  i’ve been using it to even out some redness on my cheeks and nose.  it sinks into the skin undetectably, but evens out the skin and can be built up effectively where necessary.  i truly don’t feel like i’m wearing anything when i have this on – it feels even lighter than the glossier skin tint.  i purchased all of my products at whole foods.bb feb picks 2.jpggood nails // 

it’s official.  i’ve fallen into the smith&cult…well, cult.  i own 2 shades: tenderoni and doe my dear.  both are anna instigated products and obviously bitter buddhist (a stunning muted green grey) is next on my list.  i kind of hate the bottles since they are so ridiculously bulky and they have those stupid caps you take off to reveal an extremely small applicator, but i will end my rant here.  the formula is aaaamazing, especially on tenderoni.  it’s basically opi you don’t know jacques, one of my classic polishes, but dare i say better?  less purple undertones and great application.  but if you don’t want to shell out the cash for the high price ($18 vs $10), the opi is a spot on dupe.  doe my dear is my ideal light greige that applies pretty well given the nature of the color.  smith&cult is 5-free.

nails inc. 45 second kensington caviar top coat // when my previous bottle of this guy got old and gloopy at some point last summer, i decided to venture into other top coats and try some things out.  i tried the infamous seche vite which i liked for a little while but then became meh and the sally hansen quick dry top coat which is also meh.  i was previously dedicated to essie good to go, but essie doesn’t always last very long on me so i haven’t gone back to that one.  finally mid-february i decided to get the nails inc. again.  i don’t know what took me so long honestly.  it keeps my nails fresh like no other top coat does, dries literally in 45 seconds, and i have come to the realization that i can’t be without this!  plus, all nails inc. products are at least 5-free, with their nailpure range is 6-free and vegan.

good lips //

sephora coconut balm // sephora came out with some new balms this month and i grabbed the coconut one while in the checkout line one day.  a really solid lip balm with a great coconut scent – real coconut, not chemical coconut.  solid balm at a good price point ($6).  my mom tried mine and loved it so that’s impressive (she is picky about balms and has this clinique one that she claims glues her lips together.  watching her mimic this action is truly hilarious)!  don’t worry, i picked one up for her immediately!

smith’s rosebud salve tube // ($6) i have the pot version of the rosebud salve and almost always have one lying around somewhere, which is great, but the tube version is much better in my opinion.  definitely more user and on-the-go friendly.  love the glossy finish without being sticky, the rose scent, the moisturizing properties, etc. etc.  plus you don’t have to worry about it melting and oozing all over your car!  (it happens…a lot.)bb feb picks 5.jpggood finds // 

cleansing balms // i started washing my face differently this month and it has completely changed the dryness in my skin.  at the end of january i got the pixi x caroline hirons double cleanse and it completely turned me on to cleansing balms.  this one is two fold – you get an oil based cleansing balm and a cream based cleanse and use them one after the other, wiping them off with a damp washcloth.  i fell in love with this process as my nighttime cleanse and wanted to pick up something slightly more eco and with more benefits, so i got the trilogy makeup be gone cleansing balm at my local whole foods.  this is a gorgeous product that is extremely hydrating thanks to mango butter, rosehip oil, and coconut oil as well as other plant oils.  i remove it with a warm bamboo baby washcloths that are extremely soft and gentle – and by that i mean basically the softest things ever.  the result is smooth and supple skin that requires few moisturizing products afterwards.  i am in love with both of these products and love interchanging them.

l’amour et la musique youtube // i fell in love with mercedes of l’amour et la musique this month.  i found her while on a search for youtube reviews of eco beauty products.  and she is the mecca!  she reviews mostly eco skincare and cosmetics with a touch of conventional ones as well, and is so intelligent and well spoken.  i actually feel that i am gaining knowledge when i watch her videos and i love having a reference for my eco interests besides medical websites.  i love her!!  i highly recommend her videos, especially if you want something a little more intelligent than the usual makeup dribble.

alli cherry youtube // i’ve been watching alli on and off for quite some time.  honestly i used to find her a little boring, but i have completely changed my opinion over the last month.  her content is extremely unique and well constructed, and she makes videos on her minimalist, low-waste, sustainable lifestyle.  very refreshing and very empowering.

spearmint tea // sorry if this is tmi, but i severely suffer from lactose-intolerance and extreme stomach sensitivity, almost on a daily basis.  i’m always researching any natural remedies that will help me feel better and take away some of my symptoms.  i have come across spearmint tea quite frequently and after thoroughly trialling it, i must sing its praises.  spearmint tea is known for many health benefits, but especially for its aid in digestion and management of a variety of stomach symptoms, including those related to ibs.  i actually just love the sweet, refreshing way spearmint tea tastes (i drink it as is, no sugar, no milk, no honey) so i enjoy drinking it even when i’m not struggling with my stomach.  but when i am struggling, i find it soothes my symptoms and eases my pain very quickly, and for that i extremely grateful.  other benefits include fresh breath, hormonal balance, stress relief, and chronic disease prevention.  it is also a great aid to dieters when paired with healthy diet and exercise.  it is important to note that these benefits are from spearmint tea, i’m not sure if mint or peppermint tea apply.  i find mine at whole foods.

kevita sparkling probiotic drinks // in the same vein as the beverage above, i started drinking kevita this month.  in the past 2 weeks i don’t know if a day has gone by that i haven’t had at least half a bottle of one.  it’s quite an expensive habit, but i actually think it is helping my tummy troubles.  basically it’s a sparkling juice drink that is filled with good bacteria for your stomach and digestion.  it’s a little kombucha-tasting (at least the flavors i have tried) but not too much and is really quite refreshing.  not too sweet, organic, and all natural.  i’ve been buying in bulk at whole foods.  my favorite flavors are strawberry acai coconut and hibiscus berry.bb feb picks 1.jpggood living //

i haven’t mentioned it yet here, mostly because it is a topic that is extremely difficult for me to talk about, but in just a few weeks my parents are moving out of my childhood home.  since i currently live in said home, i have been completely part of the moving process.  and even though i hate that we are doing it, i am learning a lot about myself through this move.  i’m reevaluating what i have and getting rid of what i don’t need – both physically and emotionally.  i’m centering myself around the person that i truly want to be and am becoming/almost am, and i’m keeping what i feel benefits that person.  even right down to the skincare and makeup and crap that i keep in my bathroom.  i’m letting go and i’m creating a new space that is organic and natural and equal to me.  through this, i’m especially reevaluating the material items that aren’t benefitting me in a health manner, and i’m turning over a new eco leaf.  it’s something i have delved into in the past, but it stressed me out and at times felt like too much to conquer.  but now i’m paying attention.  i’m using up and then getting rid of the scary chemicals and nasty ingredients and the shit that i just don’t use or need or even want.  but more on that later…

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february picks // better late than never

blog spotlight: may you see the beauty

may you see the beauty is the gorgeous tumblr of kristen killie.  i learned of kristen via her interview with urban outfitters, and subsequently fell in love with her instagram.  i found her tumblr via her instagram.  she has an amazing eye for interiors and i love the warm, hippie vibe of her images.  her tumblr is just as amazing – a place filled with soft light, pink sunrises, and people you want to be. C022542-R1-19-19Aa_1024x1024.jpgtumblr_ml0ganW2cS1s1ai6bo1_500.jpgtumblr_n4hhslzDGI1t10lhoo1_500.jpgtumblr_nop0t5nsbg1rwwqtpo1_1280.jpgtumblr_noizfwUIeI1rqjuogo1_1280.jpgtumblr_nfvpufH8kl1qc91i1o1_500.jpgtumblr_mqycc4dm4Q1s00ucco1_1280.jpgtumblr_n9q9kgglkP1qiq6v7o1_1280.jpgtumblr_mlx9pjnUFu1rjrrylo1_500.jpgtumblr_nf57yxzqvx1rs8w78o1_500.jpgtumblr_ne1061qI6U1qaa40do1_1280.jpgtumblr_n6bnve92HB1twrrwjo1_500.jpgtumblr_nl2kg3Xb1i1r09f27o1_1280.jpgtumblr_n1r65fWAl41qifn2ao1_1280.jpgtumblr_newiz8gNGf1r09f27o1_500.jpgtumblr_mzx7j384Qg1qav562o1_1280.jpgtumblr_nqt0ssAAvv1sbes9vo1_500.jpgtumblr_no53h5RALF1seuqnoo1_500.jpgtumblr_nu3hj5p0DH1stdilao1_1280.jpgtumblr_mhzaxcQmsL1s0a4soo1_500.jpgtumblr_mthijhlicu1rs1gaeo1_1280.jpgtumblr_mw4ui7Gwbb1s01xbbo1_1280.jpgtumblr_n3cctdMPyN1qifn2ao1_1280.jpgtumblr_n7t1yo86Dg1qzqzfao1_1280.jpgcozy-bed-scout-blog.jpgtumblr_mmuxv5pgFx1r4ohs4o1_500.jpgtumblr_lwmib405Iu1qza84qo1_1280.jpgtumblr_mmnd6lyzcy1qb5t88o1_500.jpgtumblr_mvhkhjACXS1rai1jlo1_500.pngtumblr_mudlegaJWC1s27y8po1_1280.jpgtumblr_mio2z6QFgX1qzx6nlo1_500.jpgvia may you see the beauty

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blog spotlight: may you see the beauty

naturally inclined

bb eco faves.jpgas i get older, i’m figuring out more and more how i want to treat and take care of my body.  from exercise (work in progress) to wearing sunscreen to figuring out some medical stuff, i’m trying to cherish this body i am in and help myself live my best life.  i’ve come to realize that there are certain things in my life that are nonnegotiable – acne and antidepressant medications, at least for right now – and that’s ok, as long as i do my best to balance it out.  one huge area for me in that regard is beauty and skincare (bet you didn’t see that coming…).  i spoke on my efforts to go more natural in this post last june, and wanted to do a little follow up.

as i’ve mentioned 1000 times, i’m very low key when it comes to makeup and skincare, but really enjoy the process of wanting, trying, and buying products.  while i’m always trying to cure this crazy need to consume, i’m really making an effort to consume more consciously.  so basically, if i have to buy a new blush, i’m making sure it has clean ingredients, rates well in terms of non-toxicity, and is not going to harm my body in the long run.  this can be tough and there are certain areas where i will not budge – almost anything nars obviously – but i think that is completely fine.

basically, i just want to do what is right for my body.  there are always circumstances in which we need a little outside help, but i believe so strongly in doing what we can to help ourselves, even just a little bit.  of course there are a million variables we cannot control, but why not do something about the variables we can control?

it can be extremely overwhelming to look at the makeup in your bag and the food in your fridge and think all of this is bad, so don’t look at it like that.  start when you can and where you can.  it doesn’t have to be everything.  any changes you can make to live a healthier lifestyle will benefit you in more ways than you can imagine.  and to help get you started, i’m going to be my middle-name-instigator self and fill you in on my favorite eco beauty and skincare products.

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skincare

trilogy makeup be gone cleansing balm, used with eco/organic baby washcloths :: it’s all about the cleansing balms, guys.  my dry skin feels so much healthier and more hydrated, and i need less oil and moisturizer after using a balm cleanser.

go-to face hero oil :: i’ve waxed poetic about this many a time so i won’t bore you, but…best face oil ever.  jampacked with delicious ingredients – think no synthetics, parabens, petrochemicals, etc.

desert essence organic jojoba oil :: i’ve used this for a loooong time as both an eye makeup remover and face oil.  jojoba oil is one of the best matches to our skin’s natural sebum so it’s an excellent moisturizer.  you can also add this to make up for a more moisturizing and dewy look – basically it’s a great all-rounder.

kiss my face sensitive skin sunscreen :: my favorite facial sunscreen.  it’s very hydrating so best for dry to normal skin, but i love the moisturizing boost.  there is some debate because this contains the chemical octinoxate, but it is at an accepted amount as decided by the fda.  also it rates a 3 on ewg (a grading resource for product’s toxicity and health levels), so i’m ok with that for now and will just get something else when i run out.

evan healy lavender hydrosoul :: again, won’t bore you.  best facial spray of all time.  bye!

weleda skin food :: an amazing all over cream.  i use this under and on my eyes, around my nose when i’m dry, on my hands and cuticles.  you get it.  also it smells like a gin and tonic in the best way.

weleda hand lotions :: i love the sea buckthorn and am currently using the regenerating pomegranate.  non greasy and really beneficial if you have dry hands like me.

dr. bronner’s bar soap :: my favorite in-shower soap.  really simple and gets the job done, plus there isn’t any plastic packaging to deal with so that’s a big eco thumbs up (wow that was painfully dorky).  my favorites are eucalyptus and the baby/unscented version.

shea moisture body wash :: so luxe, so lathering.  filled with natural and organic ingredients and without parabens and sulfates.  not strictly eco, but the majority of their products, besides their hair coloring-system line, rate between 1 and 3 on ewg, which is pretty great.

body lotion :: this is more of my summer moisturizer but i adore the mountain ocean skin trip coconut lotion, which i’ve mentioned many a time.  it’s just a little too light for these dry chicago winters.

hair :: i’m not using any eco hair products right now but i love, and have repurchased multiple times, the acure ultra-hydrating shampoo and conditioner.

others :: i’m still on the hunt for a moisturizer to replace my beloved cetaphil and a good natural deodorant that actually works.  i just ordered the meow meow tweet baking soda-free jar deodorant and the ursa major deodorant stick to use together, and am currently doing a deoderant-detox before those arrive.  i’ve learned that layering is the best way to have success with natural deodorants, so i’ll keep you posted.  also an eye cream, but i have some contenders that i mentioned here.  also not mentioned, but you all know my weleda lip balm is my best friend.

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makeup

w3ll people narcissist foundation stick :: in shade 0 this brightens my face and covers any redness with a few quick swipes.  blends out into almost nothing or definitely something depending on what you want.

w3ll people bio brightening powder :: the best setting powder, basically hourglass ambient lighting powders in mineral and nontoxic form.  a little glow and a little less shine.

w3ll people bio bronzing powder :: gorgeous bronzing powder for us bronzer addicts.  i wasn’t sure about mineral powder bronzer, but this is so perfect and lightweight.  it’s a great universal shade that can be applied very sheer and then built up.

tata harper volumizing lip to cheek :: i’ve had very charming since last summer and it is the perfect blue-based pink to add a natural flush and perkiness to the face.  i recently picked up very nice which is the light glowy pink of my dreams.

mineral fusion blush in flashy :: the prettiest slightly shimmery peach blush.  very subtle and very natural.  a hint of shimmer is there but not overpowering or obvious on the cheeks.  i don’t have it anymore, but i think this would be similar to hourglass dim infusion blush.

rms living luminizer :: a cult product for a reason.  the only highlighter i own and want.  it’s an icy dewy shimmer that gives that wet look to the cheek without being obvious at all.

rms eye polish in myth :: pretty much the only eye shadow i use these days.  very sheer taupe that looks glossy but stays.

pacifica stellar gaze mascara :: right now i’m using stardust (brown), but i had supernova (black) prior to this tube. this is my favorite mascara, eco or otherwise.  it’s natural but both volumizing and lengthening.  most importantly?  it conditions your lashes and gives them the attention they deserve!

gabriel eye shadow in sable :: the gabriel eye shadows are so nice!  very pigmented and smooth.  i only have this shade which is a taupey light brown that i love all over the lids and in the crease a little bit.  i thought it would be similar to urban decay naked, but it has a touch more purple/rosiness to it, in the best way.  very natural and very beautiful.  i want to get more of these eye shadows, maybe a dark brown next.

jane iredale eye shadow in cappucino :: i don’t have this at the moment because mine shattered and it is about $22 to replace it.  but this is one of my all time favorite eye shadows and is a great dupe for urban decay naked (that is my favorite “conventional” eye shadow so i compare everything to it!).  a staple for me!  i actually think i am going to pick up this palette of 5 shadows instead of just a new single shadow in cappucino – i don’t actually have any shadows in those colors/that are eco and it will be a great staple product.

pacifica enlighten eye shadow palette in mystical :: although i just picked this up, it’s already a favorite.  this 4-shadow palette has a stunning combination of shades and the formulas are incredible.  they feel as buttery and pigmented as lorac shadows, seriously!  and at $14 it’s a beautiful thing!

gressa lip boost in bare :: the prettiest almost matte tinted balm.  a light pinky nude that can also be worn on the cheeks!  quite similar to the tata harper very nice actually, but i prefer that formula as a blush.

ilia lipstick crayon in kharma chameleon :: i don’t know what’s better, the name or the shade.  this stunning hot coral has a satin finish and is perfect on a hot summer night.  i wore this to my sister’s rehearsal dinner and got many a compliment.  i can’t wait to brig this baby back out!

bite beauty matte lip pencils and multisticks :: now there is some debate over these because of some of the color dyes that they use, but to me these are ideal.  they are natural and actually food grade, and the color pay off and color options are incredibly.  i love the matte crayons – i have a couple mini ones in cafe and glace – because they aren’t totally matte but you can smudge them in to look like a stain, kind of how i use the nars matte lip pencils as well.  the multisticks are really cool and i have the color gelato which is a super cool toned light pink almost veering on lilac which is gorgeous on the eyes and cheeks and patted in lightly on the lips.

nail polish brands :: smith&cult (8-free), pacifica (7-free), rms (6-free), zoya (5-free), nails inc (5-free), and opi (3-free and i believe their infinite shine line is 5-free but i can’t find a definitive answer).  and frankly most polishes are 3 free!bb eco nail faves.jpg

bb eco beauty faves 3.jpg. . .

so there you have it, the eco products that i own and love.  please note that these are not all recent acquisitions and it has taken me a few years to get to this point.  again, i just want to reiterate that my switch to eco products is a work in progress.  i don’t think that i will ever be all the way there.  if i can even get to 50/50 i will be so happy.  and i don’t want to be over here making you feel like you need to throw away all your non-eco products either, because you KNOW i’m always going to be spending too much money at sephora!  all in all, we do what we can and what feels right for ourselves.  so let’s take it one day and one eco deodorant at a time, shall we?

ps: ewg is a great resource to learn about products and what chemicals make them better or worse in terms of safety.  they have a rating system with a catalogue of almost 65,000 products and you can always submit something if you don’t find it on their site.  it can be super frustrating when they don’t have a product or brand listed, but you can also search by particular ingredients and learn about a product that way.  if a product is rated a 1-2 it is of low hazard, 3-6 is moderate hazard, and 7-10 is high hazard.  they also have a list of products that are ewg verified and i think that products are going to start carrying this mark on their actual packaging.  these are products/companies that are free of any concerning ingredients, have ingredients fully disclosed, and follow good manufacturing processes.  i have the app on my phone and use it while i’m shopping for both food items and products.

also pps: do your research!  actually more mainstream products than you think are more eco friendly than you think – a lot of too faced products, for example, rates extremely well on ewg.  it always helps to do your research before making any decisions.  plus a lot of sites like sephora will tell you when a brand is formulated without something – like parabens or sulfates.  it’s a bragging point for sure so you can usually find it mentioned!!

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naturally inclined

it’s not you, it’s me

ok, maybe it’s you.  i’m talking disappointing products people!  please note, most of these products i either returned, gave to my sisters, or begrudgingly used up.  so i don’t have pictures of most of them because they are looong gone.  and these are things that i have mainly disliked over the past year or so, cause who can remember anything before that?!  now let’s get to it…

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bobbi brown bronzer brush // you might remember i splurged on this brush during the november sephora sale.  despite the mostly poor reviews, i thought i would try it out for myself and…yeah it sucks.  i have never had a brush, higher end or drugstore, that shed as much as this.  and not like one hair per use that is totally reasonable.  by the time i returned this 1 month after purchasing i don’t even know how it had any hairs left.  i’m using the real techniques multitask brush for bronzer and blush right now and it is exactly what i was looking for.

glossier supers // i am soooo disappointed about these, especially considering the rave reviews everyone is giving them.  but to be honest, they just didn’t do anything for me.  i got the whole set right when they came out, but did a lot of research as to when and how to use them.  my sister tried the super bounce as well and we just didn’t see any effects, positive or negative.  so yeah, these were meh.  i used them all halfway and left them at them at my parent’s house.  i have since done more research especially on hyaluronic acid serums, and i think i have found some better options as well as why these didn’t quite work for me.  i discussed this a bit in my january picks, but basically most ha serums contain ha molecules that are just too big for your skin to absorb.  i feel this way about all three of these serums – they sit on the skin rather than absorbing into it, so the affects are completely washed away when you cleanse your face.

first aid beauty ultra repair hydrating serum // this is another purchase i made during the sephora sale.  i did finish this up for the most part, but frankly i didn’t see any benefits.  kind of the same issues i had with glossier super bounce.  just meh!

la roche-posay anthelios mineral sunscreen spf 50 // this is a more recent purchase and i don’t have the receipt so i’m not really sure what i’ll do with this.  i have been doing a ton of research on what sunscreens will work for my skin for every day use, and this was a very highly rated one by many including paula’s choice.  however it really didn’t work for me.  the texture is quite grainy no matter how much i shake it up and it doesn’t seem to sit well on my skin.  i decided that i wanted something with more moisturizing properties so i picked up another highly rated susncreen, the kiss my face 3-in-1 for sensitive skin.  this is a partially mineral sunscreen and is great for sensitive skin (duh).  i have used the kiss my face face and neck sunscreen and really liked that, so i knew this would be a pretty solid choice.  i am loving it thus far – it doesn’t clog my skin or sit heavily and adds a lot of moisture to my face.  i am, however, going to keep the la roche-posay around for travel purposes.

bourjois cc cream // i am so sad about this.  i got this while in london because i have had it only wishlist for years, thank you estee lalonde!  it is a great color match for me and everything, but it just feels drying on my skin.  it says that it’s a hydrating formula, but it doesn’t sit well on me the way my nars tinted moisturizer or glossier skin tints do.  i’m going to keep trying to make this work, but i think if you have oilier skin this will be much better for you!  (update: i have since given this to a friend.)

nars concealer stick in vanilla // i got this a few months ago to keep in my purse instead of another mini creamy concealer.  the shade match was perfect but i just couldn’t get along with this guy.  maybe i’m just used to the cement-like properties of the creamy concealer?  this one just slipped around and didn’t really cover much of anything for too long.  i returned this to sephora.

rms lip and skin balm in vanilla // ok let me start off by saying this smells disgusting.  the cocoa and the vanilla scent.  i figured i could look past that so i bought it anyway, but yeah no.  i thought this would be a good petroleum-free alternative to glossier balm dotcom and vaseline but i just can’t get it to work for me.  you have to warm up the product so much, more than other rms products, and it doesn’t hydrate at all.  so between the scent and the fact that it doesn’t do much of anything, i’m not sure what to do with this thing.  PLUS it contains a lot less product than any other rms product, even though it’s in the same size pot and ridiculously expensive.  it looks like i’m already halfway done with it when i’ve used it very minimally.  sadly this is the first rms product i haven’t loved.  i am actually really mad at myself for spending almost $40 on this.

nars sheer glow in mont blanc // i’ve had this for a long time and i just can’t make it work.  i bought this a year ago when i was really really struggling with my acne and redness.  i loved how it covered my redness and returned my face to more normal territory, but it was heavy and cakey and just looked like i had a lot of makeup on.  i haven’t even bothered to use it until the last month or two (and just to try to use it up), but whenever i put it on it still feels too makeup-y.  even with an oil and primer underneath and applied extremely lightly with my fingers, it cakes up and clings to dry patches.  so many people love this, but it’s too much for me i guess!

tarte amazonian clay blush in exposed // don’t you just hate when a super cult product doesn’t work for you?  that’s exactly how i feel about exposed.  i have extremely fair skin and i couldn’t even get this to show up on my skin.  i just swatched it on my hand next to my favorite nars impassioned and the tarte blush in paaarty from this year’s sephora birthday set, and both of those perform so much better than exposed.  i like the peachier neutral tones of the tarte paaarty and the cool pink of nars impassioned, and exposed just doesn’t compare to these.  i’m actually wondering if i got a dud, but after the first one i purchased was totally smashed and this one lacking any pigmentation, tarte exposed is being returned to sephora asap.  plus, i’m really not that much of a blush girl, so i really didn’t need this anyway! (ps tarte paaarty is now available as a full size product, so if you don’t shop at sephora/don’t have a birthday coming up but are interested, there you go!)

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it’s not you, it’s me