july picks

blogs & youtube //

alice catherine // i’ve been following alice on instagram for a while and randomly decided to check out her blog.  you know when you know someone has a blog but never seem to look at it?!  anyways, i love her style and aesthetic.  plus it’s always refreshing to find a new style blogger that is down to earth and approachable fashion-wise! 

stylonylon // i’ve been following and reading stylonylon for months but keep forgetting to mention her here.  her blog is beachy but sophisticated, french but british, stylish but serene.  in a few words: i love her.  her sunday edit posts are my absolute favorite and i haven’t missed one in months.

harry makes it up // harry is an incredible makeup artist that also has an addicting youtube channel.  i watched her back in the day but recently fell back in love.  her approach to makeup is very simple and fresh, right up my alley.  some of her recent videos that i have loved are her priscilla presley tutorial and everyday makeup routine.

sharon farrell // another makeup artist and youtuber!  i found sharon through karima mckimmie and she is such a gem.  she is an irish woman living in australia which makes for the perfect combination.  her videos range from reviews to vlogs to tutorials that are more interesting than my usual youtube choices.  both sharon and harry exude knowledge and experience which i personally enjoy very much.bb july picks2.jpgproducts //

essence make me brow in browny brows // glossier boy brow has nothing on this.  $3 for the perfect brow gel – it’s plumping, perfectly ashy toned, and long wearing.  i have to wipe a bit off the applicator before applying but this is truly a diamond in the rough.

glossier super pure // i have previously mentioned my disappointment in the glossier serum range so i really didn’t think i would ever reach for them again.  for whatever reason, i decided to try super pure again while i’ve been struggling with some hormonal and stress induced chin acne.  somehow this is now working for me!  it’s not a miracle product, but i feel that it takes away a lot of the redness and irritation from my breakouts and seems to take away a few days from the timeline.

bite beauty gloss in rambutan // i wanted to pick up one of the bite beauty glosses from sephora for a while but never ended up doing so, only to find out they had discontinued the line.  why does bite do that, by the way?  anyways i placed a sephora order a few months ago for some staples and saw that these were available again!  i picked up the nude shade and it is seriously the perfect gloss.  i go in and out with lip gloss, but sometimes i just want that fresh look that only a gloss can achieve.  they are glossy but not sticky and surprisingly hydrating.  this shade is pigmented but not too pigmented, so my lips show a little of the color but are not concealer-like.  if you have been interested in these, go grab one before they disappear again! 

coverfx custom enhancer drops in sunkissed // i feel like i’ve mentioned these every where but i don’t know if i actually have.  the most perfect bronzer drops ever.  seriously, the shade is the perfect red-based neutral bronze, they are completely matte, and they apply perfectly both straight on the skin and mixed with foundation or tinted moisturizer.  they are pricey, but just a dot will do you and the quality is remarkable.  i have a more in depth post coming!

ilia sheer vivid tinted moisturizer in t2 belle marre // this has been my go to summer base when i need a little coverage and a little glow.  i find it to be a mix between the nars pure radiant tinted moisturizer and glossier perfecting skin tint.  while i love love the nars tinted moisturizer the ingredients are just too bad for me to justify, and i recently ran out of my glossier tint.  the ilia tinted moisturizer is a truly beautiful, lightweight, glowing formula that adds the perfectly amount of luminosity and coverage to the skin.  the shade t2 is great for me for summer and i have even mixed in a drop of the coverfx drops if i’ve been in the sun for a while.  added bonus of physical spf 20.  i will probably get the t1 shade when winter comes around!

rms nail polish in beloved // ok now this i know i’ve mentioned a million and one times. like here and here. truly the perfect summer red with a hint of orange but not too much.

tata harper resurfacing mask sample // i’ve had this sample forever but fell in love and finished it up over the month of july.  again, my skin has been less than fab so this is both helping my breakouts and adding a glow to the rest of my face.  i don’t know if i can justify the full size, but i really do love this mask.  using it once a week for the month of july i have absolutely seen a difference in the glow and texture of my skin.

diptyque candle in santal // my beautiful christmas present from my beautiful sister!  i’ve been loving this all year long, but especially for adding a sultry scent to my little apartment.  i will be very VERY sad when this is gone…especially because it doesn’t even need to be lit to exude the perfect sandalwood scent.  but you know i’m excited to reuse the container 😉
bb july picks1.jpgmusic //

jim croce, walking back to georgia

carole king tapestry album

acoustic summer spotify album

backyard bbq spotify album

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july picks

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

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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