glowy skin: cause summer ain’t over just yet

glowy summer skin.jpgprep // after doing your morning skincare, which these days involves a few drops of hyaluronic acid mixed with one drop of various face oils for me, apply your sunscreen.  give it a few minutes to soak in and go back in with a spritz of hydrating toner like the evan healy lavender hydrosoul (shocker) and an illuminating primer that will give you both hydration and radiance.  i chose the tata harper illuminating moisturizer, but anything with a touch of radiance will do.

base // follow with a sheer and glowing base, like the l’oreal lumi cushion foundation. ¬†this is not really a “foundation” in my opinion, but is a step up from something like the glossier perfecting skin tint. ¬†it evens out the skin tone while letting the natural skin show through and gives the complexion a beautiful glow. ¬†add concealer where needed, opting for something equally hydrating, like the sephora bright future gel serum concealer. ¬†this is my favorite¬†for summer because of the exceptional shade range and price point, AND they finally changed the dumb applicator! ¬†it now has a really nice slanted doe foot. ¬†a cream blush and highlighter, like the rms lip2cheek in vogue rose and living luminizer, on the cheeks and cheekbones respectively will add to the glow and overall health of the look. ¬†i usually use peachier blushes because they are natural and subtle looking, but whatever works for you! ¬†this limited edition rms shade (i highly recommend grabbing it before it’s gone) gives the perfect sunkissed effect.

eyes & lips // this look is really more about the complexion, so opt for something simple on the eyes and lips.  i usually slap on a little elizabeth arden 8 hour cream on the lips and use whatever is left on my finger to pat onto the eye lids.  follow with a light layer of black mascara, mostly on the roots of the lashes, for some oomph and maybe another spritz of hydrating mist.

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glowy skin: cause summer ain’t over just yet

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 ūüėČ
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

may picks

bb may picks1.jpgproducts ~~

first aid beauty ultra repair cream //¬†since first trying this over the summer, i seem to always have a tube lying around. ¬†it’s a great moisturizer for dry skin – face, hands, or body – and though i originally tried it as a hand moisturizer, it is intended for the face. ¬†i think it’s a little too heavy for people with combination or oily skin, but this has been my face lotion of choice for the winter and spring. ¬†a great staple and pretty inexpensive. ¬†i’m considering picking up their regular facial moisturizer for summer, so if anyone has any experience with it, let me know!

first aid beauty slow glow gradual self-tanning moisturizer // i am sooo not a fake tanning kind of person. ¬†i admit¬†i dabbled a little during high school – the occasional spray tan or tanning bed for dances (i could kill my younger self) and jergen’s natural glow – but in the last 6-7 years? ¬†absolutely not. ¬†i get pretty good color during the summer with plenty of sunscreen,¬†but during the rest of the year i accept my paleness. ¬†but with the cold weather and constant rain that chicago has been experiencing the past 2 months, i was forced to help out my poor winter skin. ¬†i picked this up at ulta towards the end of april because i love first aid beauty and have been using it one or two nights in a row every two weeks or so or whenever i remember, and it works a charm! ¬†it adds the healthiest glow to my skin without looking fake or over the top. ¬†it doesn’t apply as streakily as other products with careful application and i only find it smells like sunless tanner the tiniest bit – i admit i kind of love it! ¬†you can apply this to your face but i stop before my neck and just add a little extra bronzer the next day.

sheet masks // mentioned here, i’ve been really enjoying using different sheet masks this month. ¬†they kind of freak me out so it took some getting used to, but the effects are kind of ridiculous. ¬†i don’t always see immediate effects from masks that i use, but with these i do. ¬†i tried both of the saturday skin ones, but am much more impressed with¬†the ones i can find at ulta. ¬†leaders is the brand i have been using the most. ¬†they are quite expensive because they are one-use only, but worth it i think!

rimmel santa rose blush // mentioned here, i picked this blush up while at heathrow airport in february. ¬†i think i had heard estee lalonde talk about it at some point, but i can’t honestly remember why i was drawn to it. ¬†it’s a gorgeous light peachy pink with a fine shimmer running through. ¬†it perks up the face nicely but doesn’t look like blush. ¬†hard to explain but it is stunning. ¬†i love it for days when i’m wearing no other makeup. ¬†like i said it is a british product, but you can order it through feel unique if you are interested!

sephora vib purchases // you probably read my round up here – but i am absolutely loving all the products i got during the sephora vib sale. ¬†what are the chances of loving every single thing?! ¬†from the cleanser to the moisturizer, i feel like my skin is better than i ever. ¬†i was considering returning the tata harper illuminating moisturizer because of the insanely high price, but it is such a stunning product i couldn’t let it go. ¬†great purchases all around – i’m pretty proud of myself.

beautycounter citrus mimosa hand cream //¬†a friend gave this to me because she didn’t like it. ¬†i put it aside for almost a year, and then for whatever reason i put it on my nightstand at the end of april. ¬†it’s incredible! ¬†one of the best hand creams i’ve tried.¬† truth be told i don’t love the scent, though it dissipates pretty quickly.¬† unfortunately it is the only scent offered and this is a pretty pricey hand cream ($17), so i’m not sure if i will get around to repurchasing it, but i do love it in the meantime.¬†bb may picks3.jpgmusic, movies, youtube, books ~~

harry styles album // harry is absolutely my dream man, so i knew i was going to love his first solo album. but honestly i am even more taken with it than i expected. ¬†the depth and artistry behind each track is palpable, especially in contrast to what his former band mates are releasing. very eagles, very rock-n-roll. it’s a stunning album all around.

jamestown revival // what took me so long to listen to jamestown revival?  i am a huge folk music fan, so these guys are right up my alley.  they remind me a lot of my favorite gregory alan isakov, but with more upbeat tracks.  my spotify is a very happy place right now!

karima mckimmie // i watched a few of karima’s videos years ago, but never gave her my full attention. ¬†so you might guess that lately, she’s been getting my full attention! ¬†her videos are amazing and her videos are emblematic of the reason i fell in love with youtube beauty videos. ¬†all makeup, none of the changes that other of my favorites seem to be going through.

lauren pence // another youtube fave! ¬†i found her while searching for more eco product-using youtubers. ¬†honestly she sometimes bugs me a little bit – she’s an¬†actress so can get pretty theatrical – but i love her content and her reviews are impeccable.

m train¬†by patti smith // you might remember that i first read m train last summer and loved it. ¬†i decided to give it another go – i much prefer to reread favorite books than search for new ones – and i think i might love it even more this time around. ¬†i feel like i am inside of patti smith’s soul and i feel every single thought she records. ¬†i highly recommend m train, as well as patti’s other works.

desert solitaire by edward abbey // a good friend of mine is a huge edward abbey fan, so i thought i would pick up desert solitaire after hearing such rave reviews. ¬†abbey might not be to everyone’s taste – he is a bit of a john muir type – but right up my alley. ¬†it is incredible to read his experiences in the west when it was¬†still that cowboy land but changing to the tourist attraction we know it to be today. ¬†his words shake me to my core and i wish i could go back to the 60s to help him stop the destruction of our wonderful national parks.

lovesong // i stumbled upon this movie while perusing the newly added section on netflix. ¬†i’m not really sure why i was drawn to it, but i was, and it was the first new movie i’ve watched all the way through in a long time. ¬†it was full of sorrow, but so beautiful and strangely comforting. ¬†it felt like a short story – you don’t have all the details but you don’t need to. ¬†riley keough was so quiet yet so captivating – i felt like i could feel her soul. ¬†i didn’t know that she is lisa marie presley’s daughter and elvis and priscilla’s granddaughter, but now that i know it makes perfect sense as she is practically identical to her mother and grandmother (pre-plastic surgery of course). ¬†it’s a sad film to be sure, but it was beautiful. ¬†oh and i’ve had a crush on ryan eggold since his 90210 days, so there’s that too.lovesong-movie-trailer-images-pics-stills-riley-keough-jena-malone-4.pngand the most important favorite…

baby margot! // my beautiful niece entered the world on may 14, mother’s day! ¬†i was there about 12 hours later to meet this little babe and fell in love. ¬†what is it about babies? ¬†i am so thrilled for my sister and brother-in-law. ¬†and for me! ¬†i’m an aunt! ¬†i can’t wait to watch margot grow and learn and become the incredible little lady that i know she will be.bb may picks2.jpg. . .¬†

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may picks

sephora vib sale roundup

ok soooo i went a little crazy this year at the vib sale, but i am so amped on my purchases.bb sephora vib purchases 2017.jpgbite beauty lip pencil in 08 and 012 // i am not a lip pencil girl. ¬†i owned a couple mac lip liners at one point but those suckers are dry and scary, in my opinion. ¬†i’m also not one to line my lips before putting on another lip product, so i went into the bite beauty lip pencils wanting to wear¬†them as is, as my matte lip. ¬†and these are incredible for that! the shade 08 is the perfect peachy nude – i don’t always think peach looks good on me but i’m pleased with how this mixes with my skin tone and natural lip color. ¬†012 is a cool light pink, very close to my natural lip color but a little more mauve. ¬†they are deliciously creamy and pigmented, and incredibly comfortable on the lips. ¬†i was planning on only getting 012, but i’m pretty stoked that i got 08 as well. ¬†i don’t think i’ll get any other shades¬†but they are launching more next week…bite just kills it – between my new purchases and the products¬†i already have, they are pretty much all i use on my lips these days.

beauty blender nude // i used to have a beauty blender, then got into the real techniques sponge. ¬†i like both. ¬†neither is totally necessary for my usual routine, but i think it’s a nice tool to have if you are taking more time on your makeup or just in the mood for a super flawless face. ¬†when my rt sponge crapped out, i added the nude beauty blender to my list. ¬†i don’t love the super bright pink one and liked how natural this one looked so that’s basically my reasoning for this purchase ūüėČ

biossance squalane and antioxidant cleansing oil // i mentioned in my april picks that i am really enjoying oil cleansing right now. ¬†i saw the brand biossance was launched at sephora and, ¬†having never heard of them, started to research what they were all about. ¬†they are pretty awesome brand – all natural, plant based, good price point, innovative concept. ¬†so yeah i’m all in. ¬†i saw they had this cleansing oil so i decided that would be the full size cleansing oil that i use after i finish my travel size of the little barn apothecary blue yarrow and geranium cleansing oil. ¬†my favorite part about this cleanser is that it rinses clean – usually with a heavy oil cleanser you need a face cloth to wash it away (water and oil don’t mix remember?!), but this is very light and very easy to wash off. ¬†i’ve only used it once because i want to finish my other one first but i’m pretty pleased with my first impression. ¬†plus i’m all aboard the squalane train at the moment.

tata harper illuminating moisturizer // so i did decide to splurge on this product (i talked about it in this instagram post). ¬†i had been looking for a clean product to replace my beloved mac strobe cream, as well as one of tata’s skincare products to try. ¬†i went through a whole sample¬†of this from sephora, so i knew i wanted to get it by the time the sale came around. ¬†while i wouldn’t use this as my¬†only moisturizer, it is the perfect in between step before makeup and after lotion/oil. ¬†it’s a peachy pink color that adds a subtle warmth to the face, and has actual diamond powder that creates the most stunning glow. ¬†i feel healthy and fresh when i wear this, and i know the ingredients are doing great things for my skin at the same time. ¬†pricey, but i think it will last me a while and the ingredients are worth it.

surratt relevee eyelash curler¬†// i’ve had my eyes on this lash curler since it came out. ¬†i had just gotten my shu uemera curlers¬†at that point, so i put the surratt curlers in the back of my mind. ¬†truth be told, while i at first thought they were amazing, i have not been happy with the shu uemera’s. ¬†they don’t fit my eye shape well, so i end up getting my lashes either half curled, half straight or just completely wonky and somewhat painful. ¬†i keep hearing great reviews of this beauty, so i figured i would try it out during the sale and return it if i didn’t like it. ¬†and from the very first use, i knew it was my perfect curler. ¬†it opens extremely wide so you have room to get your lashes inside and the shape is somewhat straight, which apparently fits my eye shape the best. ¬†the curl i get is curled but very gradual, so my lashes don’t look like they are sticky straight up but rather curling naturally. ¬†i’m so impressed with this little contraption, and since curling my eyelashes is one of my favorite looks right now, this guy is a total winner.

what did you pick up during the sale?

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sephora vib sale roundup

makeup for a minimalist: this or that?

as i’ve slowly worked to transform¬†my makeup bag from chemical-ridden to chemical-free, it’s been a fun challenge to find natural versions of my favorite items. ¬†and truthfully, it hasn’t been that hard to do! ¬†it really is amazing how many eco dupes there are for so-called conventional cosmetics.

below are¬†the natural product replacements¬†i’ve found for some of my favorite makeup items. ¬†i won’t be getting rid of all of these dupes as i detail below, but some of them just have to go.bb eco dupes taupe eyeshadow.jpgburberry pale barley eye shadow (top) vs rms swift shadow tt-73 (bottom) // pale barley is probably one of the most hyped up eyeshadows in the beauty world. ¬†it is a sheer taupe with a hint of shimmer that is perfect for every day wear. ¬†the formula is beautiful, but truthfully i’ve always been disappointed in the lack of pigmentation. ¬†i much prefer the rms shadow, which is a hair¬†darker than pale barley and still sheer, but in a better way if that makes sense. ¬†it is smooth, buildable, and long lasting and i’ve been wearing it every day since purchasing. bb eco dupes brown matte.jpgurban decay naked¬†eye shadow (bottom)¬†and mac wedge eye shadow (middle)¬†vs jane iredale cappuccino eye shadow (top) // i’ve waxed lyrical about all of these shadows before and they basically are all the same. ¬†i always have naked hanging around as it’s just that good, and i purchased wedge as a potential replacement when i smashed my previous cappuccino to smitherines. ¬†i would say that naked is slightly warmer and more yellow, while wedge and cappuccino are equally cool and slightly stone colored. the price of jane iredale single shadows is $22 which really is expensive, especially compared to the $6 price of mac replacement shadows, but i know it’s worth it. ¬†this palette is especially great (also a potential dupe for the urban decay naked basics palette?), even though the price was steep (~ $50). ¬†it’s worth it to me to spend money on more natural options, so cappuccino is the winner here for sure.bb eco dupes cream eyeshadow.jpgmac painterly paint pot (top) vs gressa neve eye tint¬†(bottom)¬†// now these shadows are clearly not the same, but i find the effect to be nearly identical. ¬†i love painterly, really it’s my favorite mac eye shadow, and the fact that it neutralizes and brightens my lids in one swipe of creamy goodness. ¬†the gressa shadow works in a similar way for me because of my super fair skin, but i think on darker skin types it might appear too white. ¬†i am going to keep painterly around, but i like that neve offers a similar, if brighter, effect. ¬†plus the gressa eye tint formula is stunning – there is so much pigmentation in one tap of the product, and it’s a cream to powder that stays put all day with no creasing in sight.bb eco dupes cream blush.jpgclinique chubby stick for cheeks in ample apple¬†(top) vs tata harper lip&cheek in very charming¬†(bottom)¬†//¬†different application, almost identical colors. ¬†i am a huge fan of cream blush, and these two are no exceptions. ¬†i love the application of the chubby sticks, it really is so easy, but i like the formula of the tata harper offering slightly better. ¬†it’s more hydrating while the clinique is slightly more sticky.bb eco dupes pink lips.jpgbobbi brown lip color in sandwash pink¬†(top) vs bite beauty amuse bouche in meringue¬†(bottom)¬†// these are both little samples i got from sephora, but i think i can speak for the full sizes as well. ¬†not only are these colors quite similar, but the formulas are as well. ¬†both are creamy and hydrating, and offer a long lasting finish. ¬†meringue is just a hint peachier, while sandwash pink has a touch more brown/plum. ¬†bite fig is also similar, while erring on the pinker¬†side of the spectrum.bb eco dupes brown lips.jpgnars velvet matte lip pencil in bahama (top)¬†vs bite matte lip pencil in glace¬†(bottom)¬†// oh nars, why do your matte pencils have to be so gorgeous, but formulated with parabens?!?!?! ¬†fortunately, these two colors are virtually identical. ¬†they are both a gorgeous pinky brown, with fantastic staying power. ¬†bite is slightly more hydrating, which is definitely a bonus. ¬†goodbye nars, i love you. ¬†(plus i got the bite stick as a 100 point perk at sephora, so it was free. ¬†winner!)bb eco dupes red lips.jpgnars velvet matte lip pencil in dragon girl¬†(top) vs mahalo red my lips¬†(bottom)¬†// dragon girl is my all time favorite nars pencil. ¬†it’s a stunning pinky red that looks amazing patted into the lips. ¬†fortunately mahalo’s offering has¬†an identical color tone with that same blotted-in effect. ¬†mahalo is a creamier finish but lasting power is, again, amazing and i like that it is slightly more sheer at first, meaning i waste less product compared to the nars, which i basically completely remove for a lighter look.¬†bb eco dupes powder.jpgbare minerals original foundation in fairly medium¬†(left) vs rms un-powder in 0-1¬†(right)¬†// now i only have a sample size of the rms powder, but it’s too obvious of a dupe not to share. ¬†i’m a big fan of mineral foundations, and both of these are no exception, with the bare minerals being my first introduction to the category. ¬†now this is not to say that the bare minerals has super problematic ingredients, because it really doesn’t. ¬†plus it has the perk of sun protection. ¬†but for the purists, the rms is a great alternative. ¬†this shade is slightly more yellow, but there is a much smaller color range than bare minerals. ¬†i love¬†these equally and will be keeping them both in my makeup bag.

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makeup for a minimalist: this or that?

warm weather bound

tomorrow me and (part of) the fam are headed to one of my favorite places…california, duh! ¬†you know i love a good travel post, so here’s what i’ve got coming along with me >>

makeup:bb warm weather bound makeup.jpgnothing too exciting, but i’m bringing along the usual nars creamy concealer in vanilla, w3ll people bronzer and brightening powders, gabriel eyeshadow in sable, rms swift shadow in tt-73¬†(side note, i haven’t talked about this shadow but it is amazing. ¬†so soft, so beautiful and is glowy instead of shimmery. ¬†i’ve been wearing it every day since purchasing, even with nothing else on my face. ¬†total love), tata harper volumizing lip&cheek in very charming, gressa lip boost in bare, mini bite beauty lipstick in meringue, shu uemera eyelash curlers, real techniques powder and expert face brushes, meow meow tweet baking soda-free lavender deodorant, and ursa major deodorant. ¬†plus some hair twisties and clips, of course.

side note, does deodorant count as makeup or skincare? ¬†probably skincare, but i’m bucking the system as per.

skincare (&liquids):bb warm weather bound skincare.jpgagain, the usual suspects with some fun stuff thrown in. ¬†for example, i got a new sunscreen since my other one is too big for travelling and i’m not comfortable taking it out of its container and exposing it to sunlight. ¬†so: mychelle sun shield, cetaphil lotion, mini trilogy mist, mini trilogy cleansing balm, dr tung’s floss (sexy), maison louis marie no.4 bois de balincourt perfume oil, weleda skin food, go-to face hero, dr. bronner’s hand sanitizer, living libations all seeing eye cream.

and the rest:bb warm weather bound plane bag.jpgthe other stuff in my plane bag includes another of the miss fisher series by kerry greenwood, the bookshop by penelope fitzgerald, and the house at the end of hope street by menna van praag.  just picked up those last two the other day and am really excited to start reading them.  wallet is from minor history, sunglasses from ray-ban, and headphones from bose Рa lovely christmas from my sister quite a few years ago now.

jewelry: bb warm weather bound jewelry.jpgpretty pared down (for me) since i never end up wearing what i pack on trips anyways. tiffany silver bangle (my high school graduation present Рit says dream a little dream), thin gold rings from various etsy shops, gold ball chain that can be worn as a necklace or bracelet, mermaidbyhand (now eliza sloane jewels) abalone ring, beaded earrings that were a gift from my sis, sarah chloe monogram necklace, salt&summit turquoise ring, vintage turquoise flower earrings which were a birthday present a few years ago, gold ear pins from etsy, and anthropologie gold ear jackets that were my birthday present this year.  dude, my family gives me good stuff!

so there you go my lovelies.  what are your travel must-haves?  what am i forgetting?!!

warm weather bound

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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