Friday, June 26, 2015

English Mineral Make Up review

Hi There My Lovely Readers,


The day I got this package in the mail, was a good mail day, let me tell you that :) But let's go back to the beginning. I found out about English Mineral Make Up company via Instagram and intrigued by their fabulous blush I enquired if they do samples. They said they do and I can request some via their website. So off I went to do so, and when my samples never arrived I contacted them again (when you will see the blush shade, you will understand) and some time later this is what I got! I was simply speechless, because not only they sent me the samples that I wanted, but full size foundation and fabulous baby kabuki brush as well! How is that for a surprise? Pretty good, right?



So let's start with the review part, shall we?

Foundation
Foundation comes in a white box with a mirror in a lid, and it's packaged into this fabulous cardboard box that is so nice inside out, and it would make a gorgeous present (gentlemen, take note). The first thing I noticed about the amazing coverage, it is so pigmented and I love it! One layer of this foundation will give you great coverage without looking cakey and it feels so light on the skin, like you have nothing at all. When the day goes by it only gets better, because mineral powders tend to stay put unlike like conventional make up. I have dermatitis on the face, and this powder did not irritate my skin at all, so all my ladies out there with sensitive or problematic skin do not be afraid of using this. Try the samples and you will be pleased you did. The powders are suitable for vegans and formulated with mineral ingredients, and they do not contain Bismuth oxychloride (BiOCI), talc, synthetic fragrances, parabens, or mineral oils. It's also SPF15 which will give you some protection from the sun.
The kabuki brush is so soft yet dense, I love using it, despite me never being a fan of kabuki brushes, the size is perfect for getting in all the nooks and crannies of the face, and the density of it gives great coverage. I would compare it to Real Techniques Expert face brush, only softer.
The only thing I didn't like is the packaging, it lacks some sort of removable insert that you could tip your powder in, as the lid houses the mirror and it's not removable, and the application gets messy. I ended up using the lid of another foundation to swirl the powder in.





Blush
Bubblegum blush was the reason I asked for the samples, as blush is my happy place when it comes to make up, and let me tell you it's gorgeous! I am definitely going to purchase a full size of it. Both blushes I tried are so pigmented and nice, you need only a tiny bit for a nice pop of colour, so the pot will last you for ages. They currently have eight shades to choose from. I asked them about carmine, something I don't want on my face and they confirmed all their products are carmine free and vegan friendly. Cruelty fee too.

Fairy Godmother
It's their name for the veil powder, which will give you that perfect airbrushed look, and what's more it can be used as a primer or a night time skin treatment, which is definitely intriguing to me! Even though it's a powder, it's filled with antioxidants and jojoba oil to nurture your skin. Unique product indeed.
 

My verdict?
 I am so glad to discover this company as their products truly stand out from the rest of the mineral make up I've tried so far. They are not cheap, but in my mind they are worth the money. I am going to purchase the mineral foundation and the blush. The pigmentation and the clean ingredients sold me, plus they are natural, clean, vegan and cruelty free. What more could you ask for? :)

*The products were sent to me, but the review is from my experience and I speak my own mind. I am not on their payrol in any kind of way.





That is all for now :)
Take care!
Lots of Love,
Renata.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Natural Aftersun Care (And A Few DIY's)


Hi there my loves,

Toda's post is all about the natural sun care, or should i say after sun care! Let's say you overindulged in the sunshine a bit and after you've come inside you realise you got a sunburn, your skin is red and hot and you just don't know what to do with yourself! I've been there too, I remember the last time i got a sunburn I ran into the pharmacy asking to give me ANYTHING to help me with THIS!! And I was all in pain and red as a lobster. Taking one look at me the lady behind the counter gave me Clarins (or was it Clinique, l can't really remember since it's been a few years) after sun lotion, which cost me €28, was gone in one afternoon and did not help much! Not fancying shelling out another small fortune for yet another product I decided to have a look at the ingredient list - I should say I wasn't into all things natural then, so this was kinda like a blind shot) - and seeing that the active ingredient is yogurt, I went to the grocery shop and bought giant tub of natural yogurt for less than €2, and all of us rather dubious and apprehensive slathered yogurt on our skin and lo behold, instant relief!! Your skin just drinks it up, I swear! So that is how I discovered yogurt as a natural remedy for skin sunburn. After the holidays I started digging a bit deeper, and now, a few years later and much deeper in all the things natural and green, here is what I can recommend for you my lovely readers!
Aloe vera, yogurt, rosewater (or any floral water for that matter), coconut oil (which I forgot to include in the picture I've just realised, doh!!), cucumber (or it's juice if you prefer), calendula oil, camomile essential oil (blue roman being the best kind for this purpose) or camomile tea, lavender essential oil, these are all your best friends if you've got a sunburt and want to help yourself in a natural way! (much cheaper and better for you I would add).


 And the beauty of it is that you don't need all of these, I am just giving you options! Remember any of these and you will be fine :) I don't use any specific measurements, just use whatever I have on hand at that time, but if you want me to give you some ideas, here they are:
~One cup of natural yogurt for instant relief. Followed by a shower and a few spoonfuls of coconut oil
~A few spoonfuls of aloe vera gel mixed with 2-5 drops of camomile essential oil
~Juice of a cucumber on it's own or mixed with aloe vera gel
~Slice open aloe vera leaf and rub straight onto the skin (make sure to cut sides with thorns off first)
~Pour rosewater into a spray bottle and spray on the skin. You can add a few drops of calendula or camomile essential oil to this, but it's not nessesary. Spray bottle is also not nessesary, you can simply wet a cloth with rosewater and rub it onto the skin, although it will waste more product this way)
~Take 2-3 camomile tea bags and steep in the boiling water for ten minutes. Once cooled down, apply to the skin.

You get the idea :)

Here's what I will be taking on holidays with me this year for our family of four : two or three tubs of good quality coconut oil, two spray bottles with rosewater, camomile essential oil and aloe vera gel.

And one more natural after sun cooling and moisturising DIY:

~Here I took small glass jar and filled with coconut oil and the flesh of aloe vera leaf from my plant (I highly suggest growing one even if you don't grow anything at all, it's so beneficial for you and will come in handy for any kind cuts and scrapes, although l like to use it for skin and hair masks better) and a 10 drops of camomile essential oil (always make sure to dilute essential oils well).

P.s I know lavender essential oil and apple cider vinegar would be beneficial too, but I am from the minority of people who don't like the smell of lavender, so I don't have it in my house, and I've never tried using vinegar on sunburned skin as I am too much of a chicken to do that.


So that is all for now, wishing you all fabulous time in the sun and remember this blog post if you will overdo it :) Have you tried any of remedies here? Or maybe you know some other remedies for sunburn? Please share them below, let's talk :)


Lots of Love,
Renata,

Monday, June 15, 2015

100% Pure Cosmetics First Impression Review

Hi my green sistas and brothers,


You simply don't know how happy I felt once my first 100%Pure order came! Like go through the roof happy, or giddy kid in a candy shop happy! You see, I wanted to get my hands on these products for a good few years now, since my switch to natural beauty, and I always held off because of the high prices (my wish list is well over a hundred eouro long). So when an email popped into my inbox offering amazing deal I just simply couldn't miss it, I jumped at a chance, because other than this kinda once-in-a-lifetime kinda deal, they never have any sales or deals. The deal was a great gift with purchase if you spend over €40 or $45 or £30, they had this deal both on EU and US sites. I bought a foundation in white peach (37€) and just a recycled bath sponge (4€) to bump up to forty euros. Shipping was further €8. (wanted so much more than this, but my budget is shall we say non existent? I'll count this as my early Birthday present to myself. Like six months early :) )
So here we go, shall we have a look at what I got and what I think of it?


How amazing does this look? All this for 48€ I think this is an awesome deal! I also got three tiny samples of shampoo and a cotton make up bag with 100%Pure printed all over it, I didn't care much for that and gifted it to my overjoyed toddler.


Foundation.
On the closer inspection I noticed that there is something wrong with the foundation, it has those tiny slits all over it, clearly visible from this photo below.


I posted this picture on my Instagram page, and a lot of people said it is not normal for foundation to look like this, it is possible that it is old/separated or from a bad batch and I should contact their customer service, which I did, and five days later the answer came back saying "In regards to the Foundation this is completely normal. Being that the products are fully natural they do separate due to various circumstances. All that needs to be done is a bit of shaking to re-mix the formula just as most natural products". So at least I was able to use the foundation in confidence, but do I actually like it? Hard to tell at this point and I hope I will warm up to it, as I really wanted to like this product, I really did, but I just don't think it performs very well. Let me make myself clear, there are some things I like about it and some of the things not so much.
Pros: it looks natural from afar, it doesn't not feel like a mask or heavy layer of make up on your skin, you can build the coverage to your preference, and it actually can last all day providing you will set it with powder.
Cons: it is very hard to blend due to the lack of silicones, you get very little time to work it into the skin as it sets fast, so don't make my mistake and don't dot the foundation all over your face and then start blending. you will end up with streaky face this way, it's best to work in small areas. Also all that blending and layering takes a lot of time, so it's not exactly ideal for those morning before work or school run. Second thing l didn't like is that l needed tons of product to get a decent coverage - about 6-7 full pumps, which for me is unheard of, I use one or two at most with other foundations. It also emphasised every single fine line I have, even the ones I didn't know I had! My eye area looked like a cobweb of fine lines with this product on, and dare I say that made me look older than I actually am? Number four is that the foundation does not last well on it's own, it needs a helping hand of powder to help it stay, which is not ideal for dry skin gals like me! After a while the foundation settles into dry areas of your face and rubs off in other areas, revealing the redness underneath. So it is fair to say you will have to adjust your make up in the middle of the day, which is something I have never ever done before. Once I leave the house, that's it for me, l don't lug around make up bag with me. One of the first times I wore this was out for the day running errands and when I checked my reflection in the mirror at about midday, l was like "Oh, looks like we have a problem here". Now I sort of understand why so many of us ladies carry make up bags full of stuff everywhere, but for me, I would rather change the offender product, rather than start carrying around tons of other products to fix one's downfalls. Maybe I am expecting too much of this product, but then again, in my thinking the product not only has to be natural, but to actually perform as well, or is that too much to ask?
I also got the shade that is too light for me (this is in no way their fault) and it makes me look too white and ghost like, so l definitely have to bronze up to wear it, and from what l have seen green youtubers talk about the next shade is way darker and they often get two shades and mix them together to make it just right. But this only adds to my doubts to whether I will repurchase this product, I mean do I want to spend almost €80 for two foundations and start playing mixologist every morning, when none of them is quite right? 
*Update many weeks later - I found out since that if you prep your face really well by using emollient moisturiser or balm and/or using a primer helps a lot with these problems and the foundation does not move and lasts all day. I have gotten their Luminous face primer since (I have a review on it too, please check it out) was a total game changer for me! It totally fixes all the problems I just mentioned.

Lip butter
The most surprising thing about this was that it is not moisturising, and that's a surprise given the ingredients, it has shea and other butters, but I find I need a lip balm underneath. The colour is perfect for winter and autumn, and I really like this product, it looks fabulous on the lips and cheeks (trust me to try it this way too) as it does last a long time and leaves a very nice stain. It takes a very little product,  so I can see this product lasting a very long time!


Palette
Now for the palette. This was the freebie I was the most excited about, l mean you don't get deals like this often, right? it comes with Pink Champagne Luminescent Powder (works well for me, has nice shimmer and it's more on the golden side), Pretty Naked Powder Blush (looked super light once swatched and l have doubts if it will work for me, haven't used it on the cheeks yet due to my dermatitis on most part on my face.. Say no more, check natural fails post for more info). The eyes haddows look pigmented and last very well.. I will insert a few more swatch pictures later on.


The mascara was another problem which I noticed straight away, it came broken, something rolls inside of it and if I shake it slightly, it rattles. I could be wrong, but I think that the colour deposit fell down the tube? The customer service weren't exactly helpful, they said unless I will provide a clear proof of what's wrong with it, there's not much they can do. Now, how can I provide proof without completely smashing and destroying the mascara tube I don't know..
The mascara itself didn't blew me away, and I knew it will do very little for my lashes as l have watched enough Youtube review videos over time. A lot of people said it's good everyday mascara, and I have to agree, it won't give you amazing results, and if you are like me who needs a lot of help from mascara, this is not the product for you. It won't give you volume no matter how many layers you will try to apply, and that is exactly what l am looking for. Yes, it will give length but not much, and my first impressions of it aren't great, it just pretty much will colour your lashes and that's about it. It won't be a repurchase for me I can tell you that much. Let's face it, if I am going to spend that much on a mascara (€20) it has to do way more than that. Also many people say it runs very easily and don't even think going into the rain with this mascara on, because you will end up with racoon eyes.
I really like the liner on the other hand, it really compensates for a bad mascara in my eyes! I is super black, creamy to apply, gives you nice smudged Kate Moss look eyes that last all day. Super :)
*Update many weeks later - their Maracuja mascara s a million times better in my opinion, and that is due mainly to the better brush in my humble opinion. I am so glad I gave their mascara a second chance, because the maracuja mascara went on to be my favourite ever mascara, green or not! Truly Holy Grail status if you will.



So that is all for now :) Let me know if you tried any of 100% Pure products and did you like them? Please share with me!



Kindest Regards,
Lots of love,
Renata.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Natural Dupe for CoverFx Custom Drops foundation / Christopher Drummond concealer review (now called Hynt Beauty)



Hi my loves,

(want a hynt? for my new review on this concealer, please click here)

Today I am coming at you with a natural dupe for CoverFx custom drops foundation :) Surprised? Many people seem to think that CoverFx is a "natural" product, just because they claim "no parabens" on the label, and l must admit I was kinda intrigued too when they came out with the custom drops foundation. You see, I am no longer spring chicken and no longer have perfect skin, so have a lot to cover up, and since I switched to natural beauty none of my foundations come up to scratch even when I try to build it up. Plus I have that dreaded dermatitis outbreak that covers half of my face! Horrible does not even cover it. Now, let's get back to concealers here, let's get not sidetracked. Natural concealers are even worse, none of the ones I tried did a decent job and they wear off after one hour. Insert sad face here. Lets get back to CoverFx for a minute here, I just wanted to mention why I was kinda toying with idea of shelling out big bucks for it. ($44 for the drops foundation and plus shipping plus custom tax if you ask) You see, if you saw me in person with no make up on, first question you would ask if i am sick or tired, that's how bad my dark under eye circles are! Since it's hereditary and there's nothing I can do about it I have to live with it. Just under those beauties I've got dark pigmentation from sun damage that won't go away no matter what, some areas with broken capillaries and acne or some irritations from products are also frequent guests on my face. Lovely combination, I know! So you could see why I was interested in CoverFx Custom Drops foundation, it's because it covers everything! So thanks goodness I checked out the ingredients before adding it to the cart!
Here are the ingredients for your perusion:
Ethyl Trisiloxane, Caprylyl Methicone, Bis-Hydroxyethoxypropyl Dimethicone, Isododecane, Dimethicone, Mica, Jojoba Esters, Triethylhexanoin, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Silica, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Wax, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Water (Aqua, Eau), Alcohol, Acacia Decurrens Flower Wax, Polyglycerin-3. May Contain: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499).

And I was like, thanks but no thanks! Yes I can see some seed wax waaay down the list, but other than that, it's dimethicones applenty, and what the hell is crosspolymer is doing in "natural" foundation? I don't want to cover my face with plastics and silicones, thanking you.

Now, to be fair I have to tell you that it is no comparison post, since I didn't try CoverFx foundation, this is only my take on what might be the more natural option for you. I got this Christopher Drummond concealer a while ago since so many green youtubers and bloggers claim it to be holy grail status, and l have to agree, the coverage is aaamazing! This will be my repurchase for life, even though it was so hard to get it (I got it off ebay, since CH website charges $40 for shipping, Amazon and Dermstore don't ship here and I simply couldn't find it on any EU websites. So look around) I will insert a few pics so you could see the coverage, and in the meantime shall we look into the ingredient list?

Caprylyl Caprylate/Caprate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Tri-Isostearlyl Citrate, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower seed wax/Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Hydrogenated Jojoba oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) seed oil, , Stearalkonium Hectorite, Propylene Carbonate, Tocopherol, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Oleic Acid, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf extract, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) oil, Boron Nitride, Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Seed butter. May contain: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, 77492, 77499).

I don't claim to be skincare ingredients expert, but l see more natural ingredients here, don't you?


 The consistency is light and creamy and super pigmented, I have to tell you that, it's nothing like I've seen before! (From what I've seen it looks like MAC Prolongwear concealer, but l never had that to compare for myself). One pump will cover your whole face like nobody's business, and that's when I've come up with the idea for this blog post, the first time I pressed the pump waaay too much product came out, and I could see straight from the bat that is too much for under eye area alone. So I covered my whole face with it, and I didn't need any foundation afterwards! It gave me high coverage (perfect for me, if you are lucky enough to have a decent skin and don't need that much coverage, dilute it with a moisturiser or primer of your choice. ) Dark under eye circles, sun damage areas, freckles, spots, scars, everything will be covered. And it lasts all day. Keep this in mind if you will get this product after all, don't press the pump all the way if you will use it for under eyes only. That is one of two problems I see with this product - the pump gives way too much product and I am sad to say it creases if you will apply second layer.
Here is the photo of the amount needed for under eye are, just a small dime, like 1/3rd of a pump.


And here it is spread out a bit, you can see that it is very pigmented! I forgot to add that is the shade light.


I am so happy with this product I will keep buying it time and time again, and I am thinking of getting it in a darker shade to use as a foundation, as this is getting a bit light for me for summer if my 100% Pure foundation won't work out. And it does not irritate my dermatitis, always a good thing in my book. I should add that this product is organic, vegan and Peta approved, since someone asked me about animal testing and this company. They also changed their packaging recently to a squeezy tube, but last time l looked (today) they still have this packaging on their website.


So, tell me do you have any experience with this product? Do you like it?
Please let me know :)


*UPDATE: Christopher Drummond now is called Hynt Beauty & the package looks different)


That is all for now.
Have a nice day!
Lots of Love.
Renata.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Natural Fails & Horrible Dermatitis Reaction to Ecos Product

Hi my loves,

Today I will share my green and natural products fails with you. Warning, gross pic coming up, if you don't want to see it, click out now.

The Ecos natural laundry detergent caused me so much grief alone, it's fourth week I am battling dermatitis because if it, and l never had it so bad in my life! I tried all manner of natural remedies to combat it, but as it started to spread it on the face, my family packed me up and brought to the doctor, so now I am on antibiotics, antihistamines and calamine lotions, all those things I was trying to avoid in the first place. I posted a pic of this laundry detergent on Instagram about a month ago, and was so excited to use this, as l had trouble finding green product in that category, some of other natural detergents have SLS in them which defeats the purpose or just don't work, plain and simple. So long story short soon after using it I started to get itchy all over, and although I tried not to scratch the skin during the day, l found myself doing that at night without even realising it, and those little dermatitis patches soon spread like a wildfire on my body. At that time I thought I was having a reaction to new soap (first lesson of the day, don't introduce more than one new product into your routine) and I thought it will go away soon, and l have it under control with my natural remedies (I tried chamomile, tea tree, rosewater, fresh aloe vera, neem and ACV, not all at once of course but tried anything natural l could think of) so l kept washing my clothes with this Ecos laundry detergent; stopped using that soap straight away and showered with nothing but water on my body so not to irritate the skin even more. Coming into second week I found myself no better at all and the itch would not stop, so it dawned on me it might be something to do with laundry detergent, and lo behold, it was, as soon as I re-washed all my clothes the itch stopped, but my dermatitis was no better, by now the skin as inflamed and those tiny red angry bumps were pooling up together into one giant sore. So I had to capitulate and go to the doctor (don't try this at home, I am someone who tried to avoid doctors unless l am absolutely dying, and I am paying high price in this instance), Now I can't believe I am doing this, but I am inserting pic of the proof of how my skin looks like now, and goodness only knows how much time will pass until I will heal. The wost part is that I have to have my picture taken for a passport next week, so will probably will be marked as a crocodile face for the next 10 years :( The pic on the right is with three layers of war paint, l mean foundation
Omg, what have I done to myself? Needless to say it put me off for trying new products for life, for all the things related to clothes washing l am sticking to what l know already. The irony is that I reacted to a natural product so badly, when none of conventional products like Ariel were a concern before. Don't be scared to try this as you might not have any reaction to it, as I am the only one who is affected out of four of us! There might not be anything bad in that product, but it didn't suit me for sure. As we all know if the product is natural it does not mean it will suit you, and I would advice to do a patch test, but how on earth do you do a patch test on laundry detergent?
Ingredients of this product: Water (CAS#7732-18-5), Cocamidopropyl Betaine (coconut-based surfactant, CAS#61789-40-0), Sodium Coco-Sulfate (coconut-based surfactant, CAS#68955-19-1), Cocamidopropylamine Oxide (coconut-based surfactant, CAS#68155-09-9), Phenoxyethanol (preservative, CAS#122-99-6), Methylisothiazolinone (preservative, CAS#2682-20-4), Cymbopogon Schoenanthus (Lemongrass) Oil (CAS#8007-02-1), Cymbopogon Schoenanthus (Lemongrass) Oil (N.O.P. Certified Organic), (CAS#8007-02-1), Equisetum Hiemale (Horsetail Plant) Extract, (CAS#71001-23-9).

**UPDATE 6 WEEKS LATER**
My skin now looks like this pic below, it's not getting better, it's getting worse, and l am going back to doctor soon! So upsetting, it's 6 weeks of my life already ruined! And who knows when it will get better? And the Ecos company's reaction when I let them know I reacted to their product this way via Instagram? They offered me a sample of their washing detergent for sensitive skin! Can you believe it?
So, I am post second visit to the doctor, this time I got second round of antibiotics and antibiotic cream for the face, because my skin is infected by now! This is just horrible & I want to cry! And I am not even someone who cries.


Shall we move on? Sukin face moisturiser is what we will talk about next. Sukin is a great clean AU brand, and I was so excited to find it in Holland and Barrett, really liked the ingredients of this, and the price isn't too bad, about 13€ for more than 100ml of products, l was like yipee, l found my holy grail face cream, right? wrong! My face reacted to alcohols in it, and since then l learned to read the ingredients labels on the products, because that is the real indicator how clean the product is, not the claims on the front of the bottle. Lesson learned? Avoid alcohols in products, because my skin breaks out from it.

Jurlique Balancing Skin Oil was the first facial oil I got and it was a love at first, it feels so luxurious, I wanted it to never end, and was doing mental calculations on how I will afford to keep using it such an expensive product, as we all know Jurlique isn't exactly cheap. Long story short, it broke me out, and l know it did, l took breaks from it and kept trying to introduce it again a few weeks later after my skin would clear up; and my skin would break out again every time I tried to use it, so the problem sorted itself out. Since then I learned Jurlique is not that natural as they claim to be so I am fine of not using it anymore. Time to give it away.

Skin Revivals Organic Facial Cleansing Oil was the first oil I used since learning about the oil cleansing method, but again, it broke me out! After some research I have tried many different was of using it, but it did not work for me, nice juicy pimple would show up every time after using this product. I got this oil because I it is organic and the bottle says "rosehip and avocado" on the front label, so l assumed it had only those two oil in it, and it confused me a bit once l broke out for the first time, so l digged a bit deeper (as it doesn't have full list on ingredients on the bottle, and on their website you won't find full list of ingredients at a first glance either, only after you scroll down the page you will find tiny print "for full list of ingredients click here" you will learn that it is sunflower seed based and has many other ingredients including tocopherol, citronellol, geraniol, linalool, citral and limonene.

Why is it so difficult to find clean natural products that would work? The struggle is real.

Lastly, two natural deodorants, crystal rock and Jason Aloe Vera one, I will keep it short, they don't work. None of the green deos worked for me, and I've used plenty, including Weleda and other brands. Since then I use my own DIY and couldn't be happier with it.


So that is all for now,
Hope you are doing way better than I am!
Lots of Love,
Renata.