I'm so excited to share with you how I grew my lashes out in the last few months. In my last lash blog which you can read here, I mentioned how I absolutely loved my Keratin Lash Lift with the talented Rebecca Star from Fawns and Fellows. I still have this treatment done every couple months or so. Since then my natural lashes have grown a lot as you can see in my before and after photos above. I want to tell you the two products that have allowed my lashes to become longer and thicker!
EyEnvy Eyelash Conditioner
The first product that I feel has made a BIG difference in my lash growth is the EyEnvy Eyelash Conditioner. I have tried other serums before that promised great results, but they were either irritating to my skin or they were really expensive and didn't really grow my lashes that well. It was frustrating to say the least because on average each lash conditioner I purchased was well over $100 for just one months worth and because I knew it would take longer than that to see results I bought at least 2 tubes! NOT CHEAP!
At the last lash appointment I had with Rebecca she happened to start carrying EyeEnvy and was very confident when she shared with me that the product worked. She had seen many of her own clients with beautiful results and was very pleased to see countless women come back with longer, healthier lashes after just a few weeks. I know she is a woman of her word and does meticulous research and testing before sharing anything to her consumers. None of her clients had experienced any negative side effects from the product which is important to me because I have sensitive skin.
After explaining to me how this product worked and that it was exclusively available in salons and spas it made me more eager to try it.
I noticed results especially between the end of the second month and the third month. I never expected my lashes to have such a quick growth spurt but it was very obvious because I have always had tiny short lashes. It is to be applied daily for 3 months and then every other day or once a week for maintenance.
I enjoyed that it is applied in the morning rather than at night time and it absorbs very quickly. With this product you're able to apply your makeup within minutes afterwards and I did not experience any itchiness or irritation! The applicator makes it easy to apply the fluid right at the lash line and in brows if desired.
How does it work?
EyEnvy Eyelash and brow conditioner is deeply nourishing which allows for them to reach their maximum potential of growth. This is done by delivering powerful ingredients directly to the follicles. The unique blend of vitamins, strengthening peptides and botanicals creates a potent formula that conditions, hydrates and protects your eyelashes and eyebrows.
Bio-Peptides/Penapeptide- Amino acids that help to strengthen weak lashes & allows maximum growth. It helps the lashes remain in the active hair growth phase known as Anagen.
Ginseng Root Extract- Helps repair damaged hairs.
Vitamin B3- Stimulates micro circulation in the Derma
Chamomile Extract- Helps to soothe sensitive skin
Grape seed Extract- Powerful antioxidant and has healing and antimicrobial properties
The second product that I use to condition and hydrate my lashes is Castor Oil. This oil has been used to naturally grow lashes with great results for many years. Castor oil is effective for lash growth because it contains many nutrients. It is very rich in Vitamin E and fatty acids that hydrate and nourish lashes which both prevents breakage and enhances the lash growth cycle. I applied a very sparing amount in the evening before bed with a cotton swab. It is very thick so ensure that you apply only a small amount! The best kind of Castor Oil that is suggested to use is Organic Cold Pressed Hexane free as seen in the photo below. Some people use Jamaican Black castor oil, but if you have more sensitive skin it may cause irritation.
I believe the combination of using the EyEnvy daily and the castor oil nightly plus having Keratin Lash Lifts every two months made all the difference. My lashes were being conditioned and treated 24 hrs a day.
If you're looking for longer lashes I'd highly recommend these key products in your beauty routine.
I'm so grateful that I have such a knowledgeable lash specialist here in Vancouver like Rebecca who always recommends and provides the best of the best, I'm never disappointed!
The website link for Canadian retailers of EyeEnvy can be found here and for the USA here.
I absolutely love that having a healthy and glowing complexion has become one of the most desired
makeup looks. When your complexion is naturally dewy and radiant, the rest of your makeup routine
can be minimized, and your skin is the main focus.
Foundation is generally used to diminish the look of imperfections and there's one makeup beauty
hack that can improve the condition and look of your skin:Mixing a facial oil with your foundation!
Adding just 1-2 drops of a natural facial oil sheers your foundation and adds extra hydration,
antioxidants and nourishing ingredients. It's the quintessence of skincare with colour!
A little goes a long way and provides a wonderful luminous finish and over time the benefits of the
facial oil will improve your skin as well.
You can use any natural oil such as jojoba or almond, but my favourite facial oil to use for this trick is
the Okoko Cosmetiques Les 16 Precieux. This all natural luxe facial oil contains 16 of the world's
most sought after beauty ingredients such as CoQ10, Marula, Argan and Prickly Pear Seed Oil. Used on its own it provides instant hydration without leaving an oily residue and is great for all skin types
including sensitive skin. It is a decadent and effective pro aging skin treatment that I highly recommend. I use this for both my morning and evening skincare routines. After cleansing and toning, I apply and
pat in 2-3 drops of the oil to my skin and let it absorb for 5 minutes before applying my foundation.
Using a foundation that also provides nutrients and nourishing ingredients is very important. Most
conventional foundations will provide sufficient coverage but are also filled with harmful chemicals and fillers that can clog pores and aren't protecting or treating your skin. If you wear makeup you want it to add health benefits to your skin as well as provide coverage for long term healthy skin.
I personally love to use the Beautycounter Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation. This lightweight
creamy foundation cares for your skin with hyaluronic acid which draws moisture to your face throughout the day and reduces the look of fine lines. It blends effortlessly, allows your skin to breath and does not feel like you are wearing makeup at all!
1. Cleanse and apply your facial oil or moisturizer to your skin and let it absorb for 5-10 minutes before applying makeup.
2. Take your foundation and apply a small amount on the back of your hand as seen in the photo
3. Take your facial oil and apply 1-2 drops right on top of the foundation and mix with your fingers or a foundation brush.
4. Apply and spot on to your cheeks, nose, forehead, chin and neck and blend in with fingers or
For lighter coverage use fingers or the Beautycounter Retractable Foundation Brush. For fuller
coverage use the Flat Complexion Brush.
Once you've tried this beauty hack that several makeup artists use to achieve glowing skin you will see how much your skin improves and exudes natural radiance!
You can find more info on these products and brands under the SHOP tab in the blog.
Many people know that flax seeds have many health benefits when they are eaten, but you could also make awesome hair styling gel with them too! When my son was born I was looking for a natural hair product to use for him that was gentle yet effective and wouldn't leave a sticky residue. I couldn't really find anything light enough that would still hold so I started to look for DIY alternatives and came across a home made recipe that was intended to define curly and frizzy hair like mine. I was really excited and was so happy with the results for both my son and I.
So if you have frizzy, curly, wavy hair and are looking for luscious curls with definition and shine this Flax Seed Gel is the best alternative to expensive store bought gels. It is completely natural and free of chemicals like alcohol that can dry your hair out. It is very easy to make, affordable and will go a long way. My curls are always soft and touchable which is important and I can also use it to smooth out my hair when I put it into a bun and blowdry on special occasions.
Here is what you'll need to make your own flax seed gel.
1. 1/4 cup Organic Flax Seeds
2. 2 Cups of water
3. Glass Measuring cup with spout
4. Small Pot
5. Plastic Bottle Container or tupperware for gel storage
6. Wooden Spoon to stir
7. Lavender, Rosemary or Tea tree essential oils for added benefits and storage time(optional)
8. Metal Strainer
Instructions to make gel
1. Measure 1/4 cup of flax seeds and place into small pot
2. Measure 2 cups of water and place into pot
3. Turn the heat on medium/high
4. Stir the seeds in the water until all the seeds fall to the bottom of the pot
5. Let the seeds come to a boil while continuously stirring the seeds to prevent them from sticking
6. Turn the heat down to medium/low and continue to let them boil for approximately 8-12 minutes.
7. When you are stirring and notice the fluid has a thickened gel like consistency turn the heat off
9. With your metal strainer placed over your measuring cup, take the pot and pour fluid and seeds over the strainer into the cup
10. Take the left over seeds and store refrigerate in a small tupperware container to be able to use them for next time
11. Let the gel fluid cool down for 10-15 minutes
12. If you like you can add a 3-6 drops of your favourite essential oil (lavender, tea tree, rosemary) and mix
13. Pour the fluid into your preferred storage container. I chose a plastic bottle with a pump as seen in the video and photo below for an easier and less messy way to obtain the gel when you want to style your hair.
14. Store your container and refrigerate for anywhere between 1-2 weeks.
Benefits of using Flax Seed Hair Gel
1. Rich in Omega 3 which is very nourishing for the hair
2. Promotes hair growth by nurturing scalp
3. Leaves hair soft and shiny
4. Does not leave a flaky or crunchy residue
5. You can adjust hold by adding more flax seeds to the mix when cooking
6. Is a great curl definer, smoother and reduces frizz
7. Does not cause breakage or dry the hair out
8. Fantastic styler for twists, waves, buns and ponytail based styles
9. Protects the hair shaft when blow drying
10. Easy to add preferred essential oils, natural butters and conditioners to customize your own formula
11. Affordable and easy to make
12. All natural and safe for the entire family to use
Tips for extra dry/damaged, course & colour treated hair
You can use either of these suggestions or combine as you wish
1. Add 1/2 tsp. of warmed up shea butter and mix into warm gel when cooling down for deep conditioning & smoothing course hair texture. Smooths and helps seal split ends.
2. Add 1 capsule of Vitamin E into warm gel and mix for antioxidant protection for
coloured hair/damaged hair
3. Add 1 tsp. of organic unrefined coconut oil for dry/flaking scalp and hair
4. Combine 2 drops of lavender, tea tree and rosemary to promote hair growth, circulation and deep cleansing to the scalp. It also adds a wonderful custom smell.
Watch my Youtube tutorial below!
I had the wonderful opportunity of having my hair done at Vancouver's Eco Friendly and true Green Beauty Business CLOVER EARTHKIND SALON. It is one of my absolute passions sharing business's and entrepreneurs that deliver exceptional beauty services and products that never compromise your health or that of the environment in order to deliver beautiful results.
I became aware of Clover Salon years ago when I was an educator in the hair industry about 6 years ago and had an initial hair cut there and interviewed owner Jen Vanderliej so I could learn more about this amazing shop. I was so impressed upon meeting Jen because of her wealth of knowledge and commitment to running an authentic green beauty and eco friendly salon. The products she selects to use in her shop to wash, style and colour are always meticulously researched for ingredient safety to health and cruelty free practices. I was really happy to see that she was deeply passionate about it because it reflects with the methods she uses to divert waste, use natural products and maintain transparency to the clientele.
I had previously been going to extraordinarily talented hair stylists that did a fabulous job at colouring my stubborn hair using more conventional products. The cosmetic results were always great but I would notice that my scalp would become irritated or excessively dry the weeks following my hair appointments. I have since returned as I client very recently because I realized that I had to finally make the final switch to less toxic hair colouring products to compliment the rest of my beauty routine and adhere to my values. I knew exactly where to go!
Since I had gone years ago the location has changed but the quality in services and the maintenance of eco friendly practices is steadfast. It is in a beautiful open concept salon that has the most inviting and relaxing ambiance free of pretentious attitudes. I absolutely love how the salon has been styled in an elegant and organically artistic way while adding natural elements into the space.
I made the appointment with Kristy because I was told she is an expert at the balayage technique and was comfortable with very curly course hair like mine, which I was so relieved about because this mane definitely requires skill to work with. Since summer is just around the corner I decided to go with slightly lighter and cooler blonde tones. Kristy did an incredible job at both colouring and styling my hair. My hair has very red undertones that tend to make my hair always look brassy, but Kristy used the best products and techniques with patience to get to the tones I wanted without compromising the health of my hair. My scalp was not itchy at all during the process and I had a great time talking about non toxic living with her and how above al things honesty and transparency is so important in providing services and education to clients in this business. As you can see from the above before and after pictures and my video below the results are nothing short of AMAZING! My hair felt very soft and hydrated despite the lightening process. Thank You Kristy, you are so talented and I love sitting in your chair!
Clover Earthkind Salon has been certified by the Green Business Seal of Good Practice Certification program. This certification covers areas like sustainable training, proper eco waste management, chemicals and energy consumption. They have been given a 98% waste diversion rating in their audit from the Bullfrog Power Organization. Everything from hair that has been cut, to the tubes of colour being disposed, and the brands of soap and products used is chosen in a very eco friendly and safe manner for your health and the environment. They are also officially cruelty free. I don't know any other salon or owner who is as equally diligent about her sustainable and eco friendly methods and practices. With so much green washing in the industry, people just branding themselves as green but nit really caring nor committing it is very inspiring to see Clover stand out in this area. It is awesome to see a pioneer like Jen lead the way in being a clean beauty business since years ago and go above and beyond the typical salon to ensure quality in al areas
I would highly recommend this salon to anyone who has sensitivities to the chemicals found in regular hair colours or is seeking to receive high quality hair services that use safer, cleaner ingredients and practices. Not only are the colours more gentle but they also have added nourishing qualities like conditioning oils and vitamins. Your hair is healthy and vibrant!
I stand by my belief that you shouldn't have to sacrifice your health to be fashionable and play with beauty care and change your looks. Going to shops like this makes obtaining a clean living lifestyle that much easier and I am so grateful that this shop available to me. Just like the food industry, the more we support genuine conscious business's like this with our hard earned money, the more empowered the movement becomes in educating consumers about the impact to their health and environment their beauty care creates.
For more information about Clover Earthkind Salon please click the link HERE.
To see a glimpse of the entire process watch the video below.
I'm so excited to share my positive review of having the newest lash treatment KERATIN LASH LIFT. Since having an awful experience with lash extensions a few years back I swore I'd never go back to that option because of the toxic ingredients and the fall out I had. I've only used lash strips for extra special occasions as my skin is quite sensitive around my eyes. I've been using great mascara's since then and have tried using lash enhancing serums as well and they did help quite a bit but I still needed to use mascara to balance out my bigger eye shape. I was looking for something that would allow for me to be able to just walk out of my home with minimal makeup and have bright eyes. I didn't think I had many options until I came across an article raving about the celebrity favourite treatment called Keratin Lash Lift.
The before and after pictures looked incredible and the best part was that the treatment enhanced your natural lash length and fullness without any damaging perm solutions used in lash perms and no artificial hair is glued on like with lash extensions. I thought could this be true? I continued to research this treatment and from I could tell it looked like it was more of a strengthening treatment without any damage to the follicle or hair and the results lasted up to 3 months.
I booked an appointment with Vancouver certified Keratin Lash Technician at Fawns & Fellows with Rebecca Starr and am very glad I did. I have now had two treatments done and am very pleased with the results. I am now able to use less mascara and have fuller looking lashes. This is one of my favourite appointments because you could potentially even have a nap if you wanted since the whole procedure is done lying down with your eyes completely closed. It is a very relaxing experience and between the first and second appointment it was about two and a half months. There was no massive lash fall out, my lashes just slowly just went back to their original form which is less curled.
After 24 hours you are able to go back to your normal routine and do not have to avoid swimming or exercise. Your life goes on just as usual which is a huge difference compared to the lash extension commitment which can really be a lot to maintain.
Be aware of fake Keratin Lash Lift services. There are places that are still using regular lash perm solution and just advertising as Keratin Lash Lift treatment. They are VERY different and the true Keratin Lash Lift will strengthen your lashes and have no negative side effects to your lashes or follicles. Do your research and ensure it is a legit Keratin Lash Technician.
As you can see in the before and after pictures above of my own lashes, the results are immediate. The appointment is about 1-1.5 hrs depending on lash type. Like any treatment there are before and after steps that you have to abide by to ensure the best results and they are not hard to follow. Once you book an appointment online you will receive a confirmation email and all the guidelines are directly on her website. If your are booking an appointment DO NOT wear any eye makeup as this eats up a lot of time to remove to ensure the treatment works.
Over all I am very happy with the results and service Rebecca provides at Fawns & Fellows in Downtown Vancouver. She is very friendly, knowledgeable and gives great tips to maintain the results for as long as possible.
This is a service that I recommend to any woman seeking longer fuller lashes with their OWN natural lashes as an alternative to lash strips and extensions.
You can follow Fawn's & Fellows on Instagram at @fawnsandfellows to see countless amazing before and after photos and her website is www.fawnsandfellows.com.
Below are Rebecca Starr's step by step procedures for the Keratin Lash Lift:
1. The entire process is done with the eyes closed, laying on the esthetics bed as if you are resting. (Some people even fall asleep!)
2. Clean, bare lashes are sculpted up onto silicone forms. The level of lift is chosen based on the client’s lash length and desired lift for their lash type.
3. A lifting lotion is applied to the lashes, during which time you relax with a warm dark towel covering your eye area.
4. After removal of the initial product, a fixing lotion is applied to the lashes to help maintain the curl and lift of the lashes. It also strengthens and conditions the lashes.
5. After removal of the second product, a pigment infusion tint is applied to the lashes to increase volume and amplify length.
6. Once the pigment infusion tint is removed, a nourishing serum oil is applied to the lashes and eye area to moisturize and aid with removal of any residual product.
7. Finally a coat of crystal clear Yumi keratin treatment mascara is applied to gloss and nourish the lashes further. As all mascara is drying (especially the waterproof kind) this adds essential moisture and protein back into the lashes, whether worn under your regular mascara or as a stand-alone treatment - day or night. A simple way to think about NOT treating your lashes is like washing your face or hair, and not applying moisturizer or conditioner - ever.
8. Music, audio books and a blanket are provided at Fawn & Fellows… Or you can bring your own iPod. The whole treatment, from initial arrival to departure takes anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half (depending on lash length, density and coarseness).
9. The keratin protein in the serum mascara both strengthens and repairs the lashes, helping to give the hair structure and aids the lashes in growing stronger and fuller with increased lash retention.
It's no secret that I am such a huge fan of Okoko Cosmetiques. The line truly is exquisite and it only gets better and better! This weekend I had the pleasure of collaborating with Oyeta the founder and had the chance to try the beautiful Limited Edition Tresor Smoothing Body Scrub & Shimmering Body Oil. This duo was launched for a very short period of time and I consider myself very fortunate to have had the opportunity to try them out.
From the moment you open the container of the scrub your senses are completely enveloped by a beautiful scent that is both sensual and feminine. It is a decadent rose coloured cream scrub that is just gorgeous! I placed my nose right up to it and allowed myself to really breathe in the wonderful aroma. The scent really is unique and is not overwhelming. I applied a small amount from the on various areas of my body as indicated on dry skin before my shower. A little does go a long way and the nice little bamboo spoon provided gives you the perfect amount to apply.
I used a slightly damp washcloth to spread it over my entire body and massaged it from my neck all the way down to my toes. The granules are all natural walnut shells which feel invigorating and aren't overly abrasive. This is ideal for exfoliating dead cells and smoothing rough patches of skin. The texture became like a rich milky scrub as the base is black soap which is very nourishing. I also noticed that it helped to stimulate circulation because I felt my skin become slightly warm. Stimulating circulation is so important to regenerate new cells and help with detoxification and oxygenation. I did leave it on for about 5 minutes total while I was massaging so that the ingredients could really soak in.
When I was rinsing it off in the shower I could instantly feel how supple and smooth my skin felt.
Tresor adds a lot of moisture and antioxidants with precious oils such as argan oil which is highly hydrating and repairing with high levels of Vitamin E. When I got out of the shower, which by the way felt like a spa because of the lovely aromatherapy Tresor delivers, I applied the Gold Shimmering Oil to my body. It has the same scent which I'm so happy about because it feels like a really beautiful perfume oil for my body. It absorbed into my skin very quickly and left a very subtle glow to my skin which I adore. My skin feels soft, smooth and very silky after this treatment. I think I will be using this oil for special occasions because it's so lovely and I know it is only a limited edition. I am so happy to have it for Valentine's week!
Overall Okoko Cosmetiques has proven to me once again that you truly can experience luxurious and decadent spa treatments at home using the world's finest ingredients to indulge your skin and body in.
We all love the luxury of treating ourselves to luxurious facials to maintain our glow. What many of us may not like as much are the pricey costs of spa facials and some of the chemicals that can come with the unknown ingredients in the products. I sought out to be able to maintain my skin moisturized and healthy throughout the dry winter months with the best all natural ingredients and not break the bank. It was so easy, all it took was a quick trip to my own kitchen!
There are many benefits in using Organic foods on your face for masks. Since nature offers a vast array of choices, you can make a mask that best suits your skin's immediate needs. The best part is you will know exactly what you are putting on your skin and willl be avoiding any toxic ingredients, unnecessary chemicals or non Eco-Friendly manufacturing methods.
I grew up eating lots of guacamole and avocados, but never imagined I would be walking around with this green goodness on my face for its incredible facial moisturizing results! Since having my son, my skin has gotten a bit drier than usual in the long Vancouver winter months, so this Avocado mask was perfect. It gave my skin an amazing glow and a beautiful hydrated complexion.
Here's how to make your own Avocado Honey & Yogurt Mask
1-Tbsp. Organic Avocado
1-Tbsp. Organic Plain Yogurt(optional if sensitive to dairy)
1-Tbsp. Organic Honey (Manuka honey if preferred)
Cut and peel avocado making sure to get the dark green flesh closest to the peel. Mix avocado,yogurt and honey in a bowl until it's smooth. After washing your face with your favourite cleanser, apply it all over your face. Leave it on for 20-30 minutes. Rinse off with lukewarm water.
Below I have included the benefits and properties of each ingredient that this Organic edible mask contains.
Have fun using your sweet and delicious mask!
Avocado- This fruit contains close to 20 beneficial nutrients including Vitamins A, K, B6, C, E , Copper, Potassium, Folic Acid and protein. It is very rich in mono saturated healthy fats which supports the heart, brain, liver, and of course skin and hair. Due to it's high carotenoid content in the dark green flesh, it is a powerful antioxidant and anti inflammatory for the entire body. It helps to soothe and heal the skin after prolonged sun exposure. It has been used for beautifying the skin and hair in many cultures around the world.
Organic Yogurt- Considered a super food by many because of it's nutritious Vitamin and mineral content. It helps maintain healthy gut flora and immune system because of its probiotic cultures. The properties most beneficial for the skin are Zinc, Lactic Acid, Calcium and Vitamin B's. Zinc is a powerful anti inflammatory. It has been shown to help with the swelling and redness caused by acne, act as mild astringent to tighten pores and helps regulate oil production in sebaceous glands reducing breakouts. The Lactic Acid is another key ingredient that helps to smooth rough skin and mildly exfoliate dead skin cells off. Lactic Acid is also very effective in reducing existing wrinkles and slowing down the formation of new ones. Our skin's upper most layer contains lots of calcium! It not only strengthens the skin but acts as an antioxidant and aids in essential healthy cell renewal. Yogurt has many Vitamin B's like B5 and B2 otherwise known as Riboflavin. This helps cell regeneration and growth and protects the cells from free radical damage.
Raw Organic Honey- This sweet and delicious food has been used for thousands of years to keep skin beautiful. The unpasteurized kind is recommended as it contains all the available nutrients and over 5000 active enzymes for the best results.
It contains minerals such as Potassium, Magnesium, Iron and Phosphate and has powerful natural anti fungal and antibacterial properties known to be effective against over 60 strains of bacteria. For this reason it's great for cleansing and clarifying pores as it opens them up, unleashing trapped dirt and bacteria. Used by many people for effectively yet gently treating and preventing current and future acne breakouts. Honey is also full of antioxidants that are shown to be anti-aging. It is very moisturizing to the skin and helps maintain a smooth, glowing complexion. There's a reason why Cleopatra used honey to keep her skin pristine!
here to edit.
Being an clean beauty consultant is really fun and rewarding at the same time.
I know that what I am putting on my skin and on my clients skin is consistently nourishing and providing essential protection and nutrition with pure and clean ingredients that enhance beauty. I also feel at peace knowing that I am not applying any toxic ingredients that can be harmful to your health in any way and have a minimal impact on the global eco systems.
Each product you use makes a difference when one considers how many known carcinogens are found in conventional beauty care as well as how often big name luxury brands test on animals in barbaric ways. The ripple effect is huge!
I feel that applying makeup is the last step in my morning skincare routine. It is skincare with pigment, skincare with colour. It is taking care of your skin while you enjoy enhancing your features with makeup. That is how it ought to be, and it can be when using high quality beauty brands that are not misleading. Authentic clean beauty brands use high concentrations of pure ingredients and don't "greenwash."
This term basically means that brands can have minimal amounts of active natural ingredients and can label it "natural" even if 99% of it isn't!
Usually women tend to spend more on expensive creams, serums and cleansers in their regular skincare routines to prevent ageing and maintain healthy skin. You may even be inclined to purchase more organic based skincare which is fantastic, but when it comes to makeup I still feel that particular area is neglected as a possible step in skin care. Once you have conventional makeup on, your skin is coated in various toxic ingredients for 6+ hours a day which is a missed opportunity to provide further nourishment throughout the day.
Most conventional cosmetics contain fillers, synthetic dyes, fragrance and preservatives that are not contributing in maintaining a healthy complexion by any means. These toxic ingredients and many others found in today's most popular brand's advertised and seen all over social media do the complete opposite. They suffocate your skin cells, drench it in chemicals, clog pores, age your skin, dehydrate and can cause mild to severe reactions. Sure it looks fantastic when it's on Instagram and magazines, but underneath it all is unhappy skin and more importantly it's an unnecessary toxic overload to the body. Over time using conventional makeup really takes a toll on the skin and can leave you with a dry and dull looking complexion. I know what it feels and looks like because I used to use conventional makeup which dulled my skin and made it break out constantly. So if you're trying your best by using effective and safe skincare products, the makeup you wear needs to be a completion in your regimen and not taking away from your efforts. There's no need to have to use products with carcinogens if we have a choice.
What do you do about this when you become aware of the effects of your makeup on your skin and health? You can choose to use authentically clean makeup brands that have many natural ingredients for their products. Always read the labels and ingredients. If it shows a natural ingredient like argan oil for example, as the last listed item after a long list of toxic chemicals, more than likely it's not really good for you.
Some of my favourite ingredients commonly found in natural makeup are jojoba oil, coconut oil, shea butter and aloe vera. These are just a few of many great plant based ingredients found listed at the top of lists, which means higher concentrations and better results.
They provide deep hydration, are soothing provide protection from the elements. Instead of using cheap fillers, they are using high quality ingredients that contain an abundance of nutrition and antioxidants that prevent ageing skin and address different skin conditions at the deeper levels. You aren't just covering, you are treating!
Another advantage of clean makeup available today is that the formulations are very effective and provide superior coverage and pigmentation when you need it most. The performance of cleaner makeup brands are better than conventional makeup because of long term benefits and improvements you see and feel right away. My clients always tell me how great their skin feels after a makeover because it doesn't feel heavy or like they are wearing too much on their skin. This is the best sign that what you are using is actually beneficial for your skin, it's lightweight and looks flawless. You can still cover a blemish perfectly and achieve lush lashes with cleaner and safer makeup, it works beautifully.
There are several famous makeup artists like Kristen Arnett, Sheri Stroh and Paige Padgett that only use cleaner beauty brands when working on movie and TV sets and editorial shoots. It says a lot when most of these artists are under that level of pressure with extremely high expectations and they choose to use more natural makeup for their clients when they can use any brand they want. Thus type of makeup delivers results consistently! It is also more desirable for their clientele because having healthy flawless skin is a vital part of their jobs! I recommend it especially for people with sensitive or acne prone skin because many of the properties found in these ingredients are healing and anti inflammatory.
One of the foundations I use for example helps to reduce hyper pigmentation and sun damage with Vitamin C, and my lipstick keeps my lips moist with coconut and jojoba oil. I have seen how dewy my skin looks and feels even when I'm wearing very minimal makeup or none at all because my makeup is literally skincare with colour! When I am applying my makeup I am contributing and completing my healthy skin care routine by adding incredibly effective natural ingredients that penetrate deeply and allow proper oxygenation.
There is an abundance of great clean beauty brands to choose from that fit every need, age and budget. You can switch one product at a time to make it simpler and less overwhelming.
So go ahead and play as much as you like and express your feminine side with more natural, cleaner cosmetics. It's nourishing your skin from within.
If you're looking to make the switch to cleaner and safer beauty products you can look up www.beautycounter.com/natalialavaggi to look at a complete array of incredible self care products and cosmetics. You can also email me to book a personal consultation to provide you with a personalized skincare and makeup routine.
I came across Okoko Cosmetiques while I was on my Instagram. They had liked and commented on a few of my beauty posts and I thought I'd check them out. I was absolutely delighted to see that the products were made here in Vancouver, were 100% natural and the packaging was just BEAUTIFUL. I had to get my hands on it especially after reading more about the products and the ingredients it contained. I reached out to Oyeta, the owner of Okoko and was very eager to collaborate.
Upon meeting Oyeta I realized that we had had very similar stories as to why we chose to have a clean lifestyle including our beauty routines. We both decided to go clean because of our past personal health issues and growing awareness as to the impact our purchases have in the global eco systems. I immediately connected to her story and was very excited to try the products. The name Okoko is a combination of her first name and last name Kokoroko,which has origins in Western Africa. It means physical, mental and spiritual strength which I believe Oyeta imbibes naturally through the products she creates. She is incredibly knowledgeable which I quickly learned while talking to her about her formulations and the meticulous process of choosing the right combination of ingredients for her natural products.
Okoko Cosmetiques consists of two facial masks and two serums, which keeps it very simple and suitable for everyone to use. The pristine quality of the packaging made me almost not want to open it at all, it's just so gorgeous! I really like that it was all in dark glass because it helps to preserve the integrity of the highly active botanical ingredients. Okoko Cosmetiques also have and elegant hand made bowl and a brush to use for the facial masks. It really makes for a luxurious experience.
Les 16 Precieux Ultimate Oil Serum
This is Okoko Cosmetiques Ultimate Facial Oil. It carries a combination of 16 precious ingredients from all around the world to provide you with an exceptionally high performing product. I absolutely love the deep orange colour and smell of this oil which is soft yet I have noticed it become deeper as time goes by! This tells me right away that it is rich in active nutrients. I had previously been using Pure Marula Oil for my skin, so I was really happy to know that this oil also has Marula in it. Les 16 Precieux also contains Argan oil, Sea buckthorn, Rosehip and Prickly Pear Seed-which just so happens to be the most precious oil in the beauty world! All of these oils are extraordinarily rich in anti-oxidants like Vitamin C, E, and Coenzyme Q10. This oil is basically FACE FOOD for the skin that protects against further free radical damage. The abundance of nutrients in this oil is almost unparalleled. It deeply hydrates and nourishes the deeper layers of the skin, boosts collagen production, is anti inflammatory and cell repairing. The small molecules of this facial oil penetrate deeply and quickly into the skin. This is a must for me as I have oily/combination skin that doesn't like oily or greasy finishes. It's truly like a dry oil that provides the glow we all strive to have and overtime helps to diminish fine lines and wrinkles. I've been using it both morning and night and I am absolutely thrilled with it! I am very picky about results and I can see that this oil really works. My skin feels nourished and supple. I had been using the Pure Marula Oil as mentioned before but I feel that this oil absorbs even more efficiently for use prior to make-up application. It leaves a soft satin finish. This facial oil can be used by almost any skin type and would benefit anyone looking for deep hydration, nourishment, ant-aging results and collagen boosting properties. Everyone I have used this on including myself has absolutely loved the look and feeling obtained upon using this exquisite oil.
Le Elixir de Clarte-Brightening Skin Concentrate
Le Elixir De Clarte is a concentrate made with 5% Alpha Hydroxyl Acid to gently exfoliate and tone your skin leaving a brightened and smooth complexion. This vanilla scented serum contains aloe vera which soothes, heals, hydrates and exfoliates the skin gently. The key ingredient is AHA which in this formula come from all natural acids derived from fruits like citrus orange and lemon. AHA helps cell turnover by exfoliating dead skin cells, smoothes fine lines and wrinkles and overall brightens dull skin conditions and reduces age spots and scarring. Along with the exfoliating benefits there's also an abundance of plant extracts such as Green Tea, Seaweed, Licorice, Hyaluronic Acid and BearBerry. It's a perfect blend that contains antioxidants and properties that deeply repair, nourish and protect the skin from free radicals.
I like to use it directly after cleansing my skin and using Okoko Brightnening Mask or Purifying Mask. It works as a toner too because my pores feel refined and removes any remaining residues left behind. This is the perfect product to prepare the skin for Le 16 Preciuex Facial Oil.
La Boue De Beaute Brightening Facial
I know we have probably all tried quite a few masks to try and help achieve that long lasting GLOW, but let's be real most masks fall short of that promise. It can be quite disappointing considering high quality facial masks don't come at a low price these days. Finding this brightening facial treatment is like hitting the facial jackpot! From the first time I used this mask I felt the active ingredients working on my skin. I blended it with Aloe Vera Gel and a spoon of raw organic honey as I really like using these two ingredients in almost all of my home made DIY masks already. The wonderful thing to start off is that Okoko provides a beautiful bowl, bamboo spoon and soft brush to apply the masks with to reduce mess and simply have a truly luxurious home treatment fit for a queen!
Le Boue de Beaute has a base of White Clay and Rhassoul clay from Morocco which are very gentle and suitable for even the most sensitive skin types. These clays are rich in minerals and have an incredible ability to detoxify and resurface skin texture. What makes this mask quite unique is that its boasts an abundance of super foods like spirulina, chlorella and tumeric. This combination of specific ingredients are not very commonly found in most clay masks I've bought. The spirulina and chlorella are very rich in antioxidants and minerals that help to nourish and detoxify and basically provide a feast for your skin cells to feed on. More FACE FOOD!
This mask also contains Vitamin C which is important for any anti ageing regimen for brightening the complexion and boosting collagen production. Tumeric is well known for its powerful ant-inflammatory properties and is fantastic for antibacterial purposes too. To hydrate and soften the skin this mask contains rich cacao and macadamia oil. I've always loved how richly nurturing cacao is, its like butter. To top it off it also has Licorice and Himalayan Salt which detoxify are antimicrobial, purify, calm irritated skin and gently exfoliate. This mask is wonderful when combined with the raw organic honey as it provides an additional 5000 active enzymes to treat your skin. I love that there's so many wonderful brightening ingredients in one tiny amount of powder. It's definitely a five star mask that provides instant glowing skin!
La D'Tox Noire
I have always had oily/combination skin that is prone to acne every month. Purifying masks that draw out excess dirt and oil is a staple in my skin care regimen. I'd highly recommend this mask for anyone who has oily/combination skin conditions or is just needing a good pore cleaning. I usually just use DIY clay masks and mix my own ingredients in there but to find one that is already made with the perfect blend of powerful purifying and anti-aging ingredients is a bonus I like treating myself to.
La D'tox Noire has one of my favourite clays for skin care which is Canadian Glacial Marine Clay. It's very detoxifying and has an incredible ability to deep cleanse all those pesky pores I have on my oily t-zone that cause my breakouts. It leaves them squeaky clean and refined as well. It doesn't just have one kind of clay, it also contains Bentonite and Rhassoul clay for helping resurface the skin texture and gently cleanse. It feels really nice and warm on the skin because is has cayenne, ginger and cinnamon which is great for stimulating circulation and deeply purifying. Similar to La Boue De Beaute mask it has Vitamin C, Spirulina, Chlorella and cacao to soothe, hydrate and deliver superfood algae based nutrition to the skin cells. The next few ingredients like activated charcoal and extracts of willow bark, cucumber and MSM are what make this mask stand out entirely on it's own. These ingredients are amazing to balance oily skin conditions, clear skin of existing acne and deeply penetrate to kill acne causing bacteria. It really does such a superb job of taking care of an annoying breakout or clogged pores without overly drying the skin with harsh chemicals which is really important in order to avoid exacerbating the existing core issue. There's no need for toxic ingredients to rebalance oily skin. Products like this mask allows for one to create and experience a high end purifying spa facial in the comfort of your own home with immediate and cumulative results.
I am so incredibly grateful to have come across this local Vancouver based Organic Luxury skincare brand! I know I will be using these serums and masks to help maintain my skin's health and glow for a long time. Thank you Oyeta!!
If you would like more information you can go to the website at www.okokocosmetiques.com. and at Okoko Cosmetiques on Instagram.
I'm really excited to be finally officially reviewing Jane Iredale's BB Cream, Glow Time. My infatuation with green beauty products all started for me with Jane Iredale products about 10 years ago now.
My lovely esthetician introduced me to the importance of using cosmetics like Jane Iredale to preserve and maintain the health of my skin through pure education while receiving services from her. I was amazed by her knowledge and shocked by the reality of what I was putting on my skin and in my body. I made a choice to switch to mineral based makeup and haven't looked back since.
When I threw away my department store powders and foundations that were clogging my pores with talcum and preservatives, and traded them in for Jane's luxurious healthy makeup I noticed a difference right away. My skin wasn't breaking out anymore and it looked and felt healthier and healthier. I knew this was it for me.
Fast forward about 7 years and Beauty Balms, ( better known as BB creams) became one of the biggest beauty trends on the market claiming full coverage of blemishes and wrinkles while improving the condition of skin over time. I had to try it out for myself so I was waiting for Jane Iredale's to come out after using the tinted moisturizer for years. When it finally came out I immediately got it and wanted to test the level of coverage. A lot of the feedback from other BB Creams was that although it was providing moisture it didn't have enough pigmentation for it to be used as a full coverage foundation product.
Jane Iredale's BB cream blows that claim out of the water. It's a full coverage natural mineral BB cream that actually does improve the skin complexion with use. Just the tiniest amount goes a really long way and with its key ingredient of grapefruit extract it helps to diminish the appearance of wrinkles and pores immediately. Some of the other yummy beneficial ingredients include white and green tea leaf extracts, apple extract, bitter orange extract and aloe vera leaf juice and more. You get all of the anti-aging antioxidant's and moisturizing benefits of these natural extracts in addition to having titanium dioxide which makes it a natural sunscreen with an SPF of 25. That is a major plus for me as it cuts out one step out of my skin care routine, the easier the better!
I use it as my overall foundation as well as a concealer for blemishes and under eye circles, the coverage is perfect when used with a foundation brush or beauty blender.
I like the satin finish because it's not too matte and its not too shiny, just glowing skin!
Even though I am a busy mom who does a lot of running around, it stays put! YAAY!
Another great bonus is that even though it is full coverage, I have never broken out from it which has happened to me almost every time I've used conventional full coverage foundations. This is an absolute necessity for my oily/combination skin type.
Glow Time is perfect for what I want and need and makes me feel great that it's cruelty free and mineral based all at the same time, performance and integrity in one.
It's a must have in my kit!
A passionate clean beauty and healthy lifestyle blogger, dedicated to bringing awareness on the practicality and impact that living a conscious lifestyle can have.