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Skincare

How to Fight Acne with French Green Clay

Beauty, Blog, DIY, Skincare

Perfect skin is not something I would honestly say I have. But what I can say is that it has gotten better. I have suffered from adult acne and trust me I understand that it is not pretty nor is it fun. It’s definitely a struggle and what works for some may not work for all. Clear skin is a commitment to constantly work on your skin and ultimately find a routine and or products that will produce the best results.

In my last post on Infinity Jars I talked about getting back into DIY beauty products and treatments. In comes french green clay also known as sea clay. This clay contains healing properties such as bentonite, magnesium, calcium, potassium, silica, and selenium. French green clay is green in color like it’s name states; the pigment determines the quality. You want to make sure your clay is green in color and not too gray.

If you’ve never heard of this powerful clay here’s a couple facts:

  • Great clearing blemishes
  • “Drinks” oils, toxic substances, and impurities from your skin
  • Helps to remove dead skin cells and promote circulation for new healthy skin cells
  • Used in acient Egypt, Greece, and Rome to treat skin and digestive problems

There’s really no wrong way to go when making a clay mask. You can mix it with water, apple cider vinegar, aloe vera juice, or any other form of liquid. I used apple cider vinegar because of it’s astringent properties and the ability to tone, heal and treat blemishes. Plus ACV is great for removing dark spots and evening out the skin tone.

French Clay Mask for Acne Recipe

  1. Mix 1-2 tablespoons of french green clay
  2. add enough liquid to form a paste
  3. apply to face with finger or a brush
  4. allow to dry, rinse and cleanse face as normal

As an oily girl I try to use some form of a clay mask at least once or twice a week. You can purchase french green clay at Mountain Rose Herbs or From Nature with Love.

Infinity Jars Review

Beauty, Body, Health, Natural Hair, Skincare

I love DIY beauty and cosmetic formulations using herbs, oils, and butters. I haven’t made my own products in a while but I’ve been itching to get back into it. There was a time when I made my own deep conditioners and body oils. So when Infinity Jars sent these to me for review I thought this would be the perfect time to start again.

Infinity Jars is an ultra violet glass which blocks out visible light and keeps contents fresh with an air tight seal. Plus they are gorgeous! They just motivate the kitchen chemist in me to start concocting beauty treatments. You can also use these to store herbs, spices, and other kitchen items as well.

I decided to get the 100 ml jar for DIY deep conditioners and face masks, 50 ml spray bottle which is great for hair or facial mists, 100 ml pump bottle for gels and oil mixes. I’m so excited to start making us of these jars. Stay tuned for some DIY beauty mixes coming in the next few weeks.

Apple Rose Beauty Skincare Review

Skincare

Okay this post is embarrassingly overdue. I met the lovely owner of Apple Rose Beauty at the Indie Beauty Expo last year. We connected frequently since then and she was gracious enough to send me full size bottles of her skincare line to try. What I received was the facial cleanser, moisturizer, and vitamin C serum. Apple Rose Beauty provides natural and organic spa quality skincare. My skin is oily and sensitive and prone to breakouts. So you can imagine how hard it is to find quality skincare that works for me without causing side effects. As with any new skincare products I always say test it out for at least 3 weeks before making a determination. I’ve had these products for over a month and here’s my review:

 

Naturally Nourish Cleanser: This is a gentle and effective facial cleanser made with organic ingredients. A little goes a very long way. I noticed that I only needed a small dime size amount in order to get a good lather. It works well with your hands or any scrub brush you may have. What I love most is that it helps to fight acne but doesn’t dry my skin out. It’s got that perfect balance of acne fighting ingredients and moisturizing properties. Most cleansers marketed for acne prone skin tend to be very drying.

 

Ingredients: Organic Lavender Distillate, Organic Aloe Leaf, Coconut Oil, Organic Sunflower, Organic Castor Seed, Witch Hazel, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Guar Gum, Organic Salix Willow Bark, Vitamin E, Carageenan, Vitamin C, Clove Essential Oil, Organic Juniper, Organic Cayenne, Vitamin B5, Rosemary Seed Extract.

 

Nourish Naturally Moisturizing Treatment: This is a highly concentrated treatment for the skin. The consistency is kind of thick which did alarm me a bit because for my oily skin I usually shy away from heavy creams. Just like the cleanser a little goes a long way. I definitely didn’t need much. I should note that I don’t use it every night just every other. This didn’t leave my face looking like a grease ball in the morning. The best part is that it contains licorice extract and turmeric which is great for fading dark spots.

Ingredients: Water, Organic Jojoba Oil, Carbomer, Arginine (Natural Amino Acid), Organic Lavender, Wildcrafted Comfrey, Organic Echinacea, Organic Gotu Kola, Organic Sage, Organic Thyme, Organic Goldenseal, Wildcrafted Propolis, Organic Oat, Organic Turmeric, Organic Licorice, Sandalwood Essential Oil, Melissa Essential Oil, Geranium Essential Oil, Ethylhexyl Glycerin (natural preservative), Phenoxyethanol (nature identical preservative), Aloe Vera Extract, Organic Gotu Kola Extract, Organic Horsetail Plant Extract, Organic Geranium Extract, Organic Dandelion Extract.

 

Bloom Beautifully 20% Vitamin C serum: I must admit I’m a little late to the serum party. I know you’re supposed to start using them in your early 20’s before you actually need it. But hey it’s never too late. This vitamin C serum also contains hyaluronic acid and collagen boosting properties. It tackles and prevents many problems into one. It works to repair sun damage and brightens complexion. Vitamin C serums normally take time to notice their effects but after using this for a few months my skin feels smoother to the touch. I use it on my face, neck, and chest nightly.

 

Ingredients: Water, Organic Aloe Leaf, Organic Vitamin C, Organic Sulfur, Plant Based Hyaluronic Acid, Witch Hazel, Vitamin E, Carbomer, Arginine (Natural Amino Acid), Vitamin E Acid, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Organic Jojoba Oil, Phenoxyethanol (nature identical preservative), Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin (natural preservative), Organic Gotu Kola Extract, Organic Horsetail Plant Extract, Organic Geranium Extract, Organic Dandelion Extract.

Natural vs. Organic vs. Cruelty Free vs. Vegan

Health, Info & Tips, Skincare

So if you’re new to this world of green living I’m sure you’ve heard of the terms organic, vegan, and cruelty free. But maybe you’re not sure what this all means and what you should be looking out for. It can get confusing when you’re trying to make healthy purchasing decisions. I’m here to help clear up any misconceptions and equip you with the knowledge and understanding that may make it a little easier.

Now that all these terms are trending you are seeing them everywhere. It’s hard to come by a product and not see it labeled as natural, organic, vegan, non-GMO, or something along those lines. Trying to decipher between all these labels and chose the one that best suits you can be a daunting task. So overwhelming that it’s tempting to give up and just go the most economical option that makes you feel safest. Hopefully I can clear up a lot of common misconceptions and give you some practical knowledge so that you feel confident the next time you’re strolling through the isles of your local grocer.

 

“Natural”- People often assume if a product is natural then that means it’s also organic however this is false. The term natural is often used by manufactures as a marketing ploy to make you think the product doesn’t contain any harmful ingredients. There is no regulation from the FDA about labeling a product as “natural”. This means that anyone can use that term without any stipulation. This is also why it is important to read your ingredient list and labels carefully. Something labeled as “natural” can contain artificial ingredients, pesticides, hormones, and other additives. Some manufacturers cover this by including one ingredient that is natural and or plant based. Currently the only terms that are regulated are USDA Organic, Cruelty Free, and Non-GMO.

Source: usda.gov

Organic- The term organic basically means to be derived from living matter. Simply stated organic means to be grown or produced without the use of pesticides, synthetic ingredients, antibiotics, and genetically modified organisms. The easiest way to tell if a product is organic is to look for the USDA seal. The USDA Organic Program is a government-approved certifier that takes the manufacturer through a rigorous process that examines the farming practices the ingredient or animal derived from. Unlike the term “natural” only organic offers government-backed assurance that products are grown and processed without the use of toxic chemicals, antibiotics, or synthetic growth hormones.

Source: peta.org

Cruelty Free & Vegan Cruelty free is means that no ingredients in the product were tested on animals. Vegan means that the product does not contain any animal ingredients. Just because something is cruelty free doesn’t automatically mean that it’s free of animal derived substances, even if they don’t appear in the final product. The most common cruelty free & vegan label is verified by PETA; People for Ethical Treatment of Animals. You’ll know by the bunny symbol in the logo. When a product has this label a company or manufacturer is agreeing not conduct or pay for any tests on animals for ingredients, formulations, or finished products and do not contain any animal by-products. PETA requires companies to sign a statement of assurance and they pay to license the cruelty free bunny logo on the label.

Source: nongmoproject.org

Non-GMO- This labeling is something fairly new seen on the market. The Non-GMO Project was founded in 2005 as a non profit organization aiming to provide labeling for products that did not contain any genetically modified organisms. In case you’re not familiar with the term GMO essential it’s an organism that has had it’s DNA altered or modified in some way. In common terms it’s when scientists get involved to create or duplicate something derived from nature, or in others words trying to recreate nature through genetic engineering. The mission of the Non-GMO project is to preserve and build sources of Non-GMO products and educate consumers. Currently in the US the most common items that are genetically modified are soy and corn. This is because of the mass production, feeding, and use for agriculture purposes. As a general rule of thumb if you are eating or using a product that derives from corn or soy make sure that it has the Non-GMO Product or USDA Organic label on it. For meats and dairy look for that label as well or animals that are 100% grass fed or pasture-fed.

 

Here are some final tips and food for thought. When shopping look for any of the afore mentioned labels. Another work around is to shop at your local farmers markets. You’re more likely to find non-GMO food from local farmers. Most large industrial farms use some form of GMO. I love farmers markets because not only are you supporting small businesses in your community but you can talk to the famers directly and ask them questions about their farming practices.

 

Do you have any tips? Please share them in the comments below.

Lack of Healthy Beauty options for Black Women

Featured, Info & Tips, Lifestyle, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

Recently the Environmental Working Group did a study on the market for black cosmetics. According to the studies less than 25% of products marketed to black women score low in potentially dangerous hazardous ingredients. This means that the majority of products currently on the market targeted at black women contain ingredients that can potentially cause serious harm to our health. They also updated their Skin Deep database to include over 1,000 products marketed to black women. This is awesome news because now you can check the hazardous levels of the products you probably use regularly.

I’ve been pushing the green lifestyle for a while now and it amazes me just how much women of color are still not aware. Even in my everyday life I meet women who have no idea that their personal care products are not safe. The looks on faces is one of shock and astonishment when I proceed to tell them that they cannot trust crafty marketing or even the government for that matter when it comes to beauty product shopping. Just a few days ago I was having a conversation with a black woman from my church about Secret deodorant. I stopped using traditional deodorant and actually go without most days. I wrote an article on the blog discussing the dangers of using traditional deodorant and natural alternatives. To sum it up I explained to this woman that she should stop using Secret deodorant because of the aluminum and other carcinogens that are linked to breast cancer and other diseases. Thankfully her response was one of gratitude as if I saved her life. In actuality I pretty much did in the long run.

createher-stock-care-free-curls-19

Even though I’m still able to educate people I come in contact with in person and online via this blog; what that conversation and EWG’s report tells me is that there is still more work to be done. Research has mostly focused on chemical hair straighteners for black women and girls. As a woman sporting her natural hair, I think it’s awesome how the natural hair movement has exploded. However it’s bigger than just our hair. While it’s great that we are embracing our curls and staying away from parabens and sulfates in our hair products, what about our lipsticks, lotions, etc.?? And truth be told not even all the natural hair products are actually “natural”. You still have to read your labels and be cautious when purchasing those items as well. It’s sad that it feels like you need a degree in chemistry in order to buy beauty products but unfortunately until better regulation is in place this is what we have to do. We have to continue to educate ourselves about the ingredients in everything that we use.

ewg_bwc_straightners_c02

image from ewg.org

As I look around at the various blogs, events, and social media platforms I don’t really see a wealth of information about being conscious when it comes to every other beauty product that is used in the black community aside from our hair. This gives off the message that all we are focused on is our hair. So as long as our hair is slayed then we’re good. Sorry (not sorry) ladies but this is not enough! With black women being the highest on the list of fibroids, infertility, and other health concerns we should be much more prevalent about the practices of our whole body not just hair.

source: ewg.org

source: ewg.org

“This report makes clear the lack of safer alternatives for black women. Demand for these products is increasing and the cosmetics industry needs to provide healthy beauty options for black women” –Women’s Voices for the Earth. This is one of the many reasons why I created my holiday gift guide featuring black owned green beauty brands. While there aren’t as many as others there are still options.

You may be reading this article and thinking; well what can I do about it. Continue to support green beauty bloggers like myself and other organizations such as Women’s Voices for the Earth and Black Women for Wellness. Stay up to date on what hazardous ingredients are by checking websites and databases like Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep and the ThinkDirty app. Think twice before just picking up an item at your local retailer and placing it in your shopping cart. Take the time to read the label, read the ingredients in the product. If you’re not sure what an ingredient is look it up through one of the databases I mentioned. If you see that a product has harmful ingredients start looking for safer alternatives. Start supporting organic natural beauty brands like the ones I mentioned in my holiday gift guide.

Major companies only see and understand money. People always tell me that buying organic or going green is expensive. I admit that yes at times it can be a bit pricier than traditional items. However I believe in the buying power we have. The beauty industry is a trillion dollar business with black women accounting for the majority of that. If more people made conscious decisions when it comes to buying beauty products a lot can change. If you can get companies to stop using sulfates I believe we can push them to create all beauty products without toxic ingredients. Trust me they will take notice of people opting not to buy toxic beauty products when they start losing money.

 

Have you read EWG report? What are your thoughts?

Resource: ewg.org Big Market for Black Cosmetics but less Hazardous Choices Limited 

Black Owned Non-Toxic Beauty Brands | 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Feminine Hygiene, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

This platform is all about uplifting and spreading the word on healthy non-toxic living. In keeping up with the spirit of upliftment and encouragement I wanted to highlight some awesome women of color who have created amazing non-toxic beauty brands. Here is a list of black-owned green beauty and non-toxic brands to support this holiday season!

 

Skin & Body Care

All-Natural & Organic Vegan based skin care line Jacqs Organics

Natural & Organic, Spa Quality Skincare Apple Rose Beauty 

Caribbean Inspired Organic Handcrafted Skincare  Calypso Glow 

All natural aromatherapy skin and hair care line Natural Annie Essentials 

Pure, natural, luxurious skin care LaBelle Femme Products

Artisan natural skin care beauty products Zandra Beauty

Natural handmade skin care with beneficial ingredients Oh Honey Skin Care

All natural, multi purpose vegan beauty product Base Butter 

Natural fun bath & body products Pooka Pure and Simple 

High quality natural skin care products from natural ingredients Okoko Cosmetiques 

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Lavish Cocoa Body Butter | DIY

Skincare

Last week I talked about how much I enjoy making DIY green beauty items at home. Not only is it fun but it’s also a great way to know what’s in your products. In this post I’m sharing a recipe for a cocoa body butter that will leave your skin feeling nourished and silky soft. It’s a combination of coconut oil and cocoa butter so it smells simply delish!

 

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DIY Brown Sugar Hair and Body Butter

Natural Hair, Skincare

 

I love incorporating natural oils and butters into my daily personal care routine . Knowing what’s inside your products is so important because we have to protect ourselves from the dangers of toxic ingredients. What better way to be safe than to create your own beauty products from home! So I’ve partnered with CurlMix to provide this delicious DIY recipe that you can use on your hair and body.

 

What is CurlMix? CurlMix is the first DIY box formulated for curly hair. This subscription box service allows you to create your own natural beauty products in your kitchen. Each month you get a box of raw ingredients to create things like shampoo, conditioner, stylers, or creams for the hair and or body. It’s fun and exciting because not only do they use all natural ingredients but each month you create something different. CurlMix aims to empower the conscious curly consumer through education. They believe that you shouldn’t sacrifice integrity for beauty. This is so inline with my mission here at The Holistic Honey which is not sacrificing health in the name of beauty!

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Calypso Glow Organic Skincare Review

Skincare

Are you looking for nourishing oils and butters with a little Caribbean flavor? I bring you Calypso Glow! I was first introduced to Calypso Glow from attending the Indie Beauty Expo. I met with the Founder & Owner Patricia Bentham who is just as lovely as her British accent! For those that don’t know I’m a little crazy for English accents 🙂 continue reading

Andalou Naturals Skincare Review

Skincare

Do you struggle with acne and problematic skin? Andalou Naturals clarifying line has been helping my skin so much over the last few months. When it comes to facial care I like to use the products for at least two weeks because you get a much clearer idea on how well it will do for your skin. continue reading

Spring Beauty Must Haves | Natural & Organic

Body, Feminine Hygiene, Natural Hair, Skincare

Even though spring is almost over and we have like one more month until it’s officially summer (yikes!). I thought I would share some green beauty items that I am absolutely loving this spring and will continue to use into the summer. Some of these are products that I’ve been using for a while and others are new.

 

Shea Moisture Fruit Fusion Coconut Water Lotion

Whoa I know that’s a mouth full! I have tried so many of the body lotions from Shea Moisture and I have to say that this to one so far is my favorite. The first two ingredients are aloe vera juice and coconut water. Both of which are very light yet hydrating at the same time. Most of the other lotions I’ve tried from this brand a very thick and heavy, the texture of this cream is on the lighter side but still provides so much moisture. Another plus for me is that because the formula is so light weight its makes for easy application. For those who may be curious is has more of a pleasant fruity smell not coconuts.

 

Schmidt’s Natural Deodorant in Lavender + Sage

I have been on the hunt for a good natural deodorant that is actually free of toxins and actually works. While strolling through the isles of Whole Body I came across this deodorant and decided to pick up since it was on sale. I notice a lot of natural deodorants are formulated as a cream instead of the stick that we are used to. Although from what I hear Schmidt’s has actually come out with a stick version. However I picked up the cream and at first the texture was a little weird for me I could feel the baking soda. The directions say to take a little and rub it between your fingers then apply to underarm areas. As for smell and protection I would say it did well. I’m not a girl who perspires much so I can’t really give an opinion on the effectiveness of that. But I didn’t walk around with an odor and that is what matters to me! Also another brand (who shall remain nameless for now) gave me a horrible rash afterwards. So I’m happy to say that I didn’t experience that with this product.

 

100 Percent Pure Seaweed Shaving Cream

If you truly follow me or this blog then y’all know how much I stan for this brand. I was sent this shaving cream a while back but wasn’t really able to put it to use until now. If I’m not waxing then I’m shaving or touching up certain areas at home. I was never a fan of shaving cream because most come in a foam and I am not using Nair for the obvious toxic reasons. I was more than happy to test this product out. It’s texture is very lightweight almost runny if you are not careful. A little goes a long way. What’s beautiful about this product is that not only does it help you remove all the unwanted hair but it leaves your skin feeling so smooth and soft afterwards.

 

Karens Body Beautiful Sweet Ambrosia Leave in Conditioner

My hair has loved KBB since they first started in that little shop in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. Back in my super early natural hair journey days I would go there personally to pick up some sweet smelling natural goodies for my skin and hair. The best part about this is that their formula has still not changed, the only thing that has is the packing. I have tried many other natural hair products but the Sweet Ambrosia is what makes my hair so uber soft like nothing else has. My hair can get weighed down easily so I light to use light weight products. Sweet Ambrosia is very light weight thin consistency and my hair drinks it up! I included this in my Spring/ Summer favorites because why not and second the essential oil based fragrances this comes in are perfect to have your hair looking and smelling good this season.

 

Okay ladies so those were my Spring Green Beauty Must Haves. Have you tried any of the products listed above? If so leave me a comment and let me know what your thoughts.

 

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Acure Organics Skincare Review

Skincare

Last week when I posted about toxins to avoid in facial wash, I received questions about which products I’m using on my skin. I will do a skin care post in the future but for now I want to share some products that I currently use in my facial care routine.

I found Acure Organics in Whole Foods last year and after researching their website and viewing their ingredients I decided to give it a try. I like the fact that their products are made from all natural ingredients including fruit juices, herbs, and antioxidants. They are also vegan, sulfate free, cruelty free, paraben free, PEG free, petroleum free, phthalate free, silicone free, gluten free, and synthetic fragrance free.

 

So far I’ve only tried 2 products from their facial care product line:

Acure-BathroomPic copy

Facial Cleansing Gel

This cleanser is formulated for combination and oily skin types. It contains super fruit and chlorella growth factor to stimulate new cell growth. The packaging claims it won’t strip your skin’s natural acid mantle for superior moisture balance and protection. I love the fact that this is a gel cleanser because my skin reacts better to gels verses creams. Even though it’s for oily skin it doesn’t strip my skin and leave it feeling dry afterwards. My face feels clean and hydrated. Lately I have been using this day and night.

 

Brightening Facial Scrub

I picked this up because I needed an exfoliator, plus I liked the fact that it contains brightening effects. Who doesn’t want clear bright skin? Just like the facial cleanser it contains chlorella growth factor. Even though it’s a scrub it gently exfoliates the skin removing impurities using organic sea kelp and lemon peel. I’m trying to stay away from using harsh abrasives to exfoliate. A lot of the drugstore brands have harsh particles that can actually create minor cuts in the skin. Thankfully microbeads have been banned in the US. This scrub is safe to use up to 3 times per week.

 

I’ll have a full skin care routine coming soon but until then I hope this review was helpful.

 

You can find Acure at Whole Foods, Target, and online. They are very affordable all of their products are no more than $10. I’ve also tried their line of shampoos and conditioners.

 

Have you tried any products from the Acure line? Leave a comment and let me know.

 

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Toxins to Avoid when buying a Facial Cleanser

Skincare

 

When I decided to make the switch to all natural beauty one of the first items on the chopping block was my facial cleanser. We use it everyday at least twice a day. So one could say that it’s a pretty important step in your beauty routine. It can also be one of the most damaging steps in your beauty routine. As a cleanser that you use twice a day it should be based on what it provides your skin. If you are using a cleanser filled with harmful ingredients your skin is not getting the most it can in terms of your health and beauty.

 

We all want clear, glowing, healthy skin. Wouldn’t it be great if your cleanser could do it’s job of removing dirt, debris, and make up without infusing chemicals into your skin. Our skin is our largest organ and whatever you place directly on your skin goes into your bloodstream. Now there’s something to think about.

 

Most drugstore cleansers do not contain any ingredients that actually nurture the skin. Nourishing things like plant-based antioxidants, omega rich oils, and botanicals. Hopefully with the info you find in this article you’ll be a little more cautious before purchasing your next cleanser.

 

Here’s a list of what to watch out for:

 

  1. SLS (also known as sodium lauryl sulfate)- You often hear about this in the natural hair community as a common ingredient to avoid. The same principals follow with skincare. This toxic ingredient is what creates the lather effect in products. It’s a chemical detergent and surfactant. Not only is SLS drying and striping to the skin but can also cause irritation and blemishes.
  2. Fragrance– Ya’ll know what this is; it’s the stuff that makes products smell good and sweet. And if you think about it why is that really necessary for a facial cleanser?? Whether artificial, synthetic or not this can cause irritation and inflammation, especially in sensitive or problematic skin.
  3. Benzoyl Peroxide– Commonly used with those who suffer from acne. It supposedly works to “dry up” acne lesions. However studies showed it may be possible tumor promoter and produces damage in human cells. It’s really not worth all the risk. Plus there are other more effective naturals ways to clear up acne.
  4. Parabens (methyl, butyl, ethyl, propyl)- Very commonly used preservative however not always indicated on the box. Companies do not have to disclose that their product contains parabens if it’s under 5%. Chose brands that indicate paraben free in their product line. Parabens have been linked to breast cancer among other diseases. Easily absorbed into the bloodstream and organs.
  5. Petroleum or mineral oil– Those can be kind of tricky to find you may also see them in the ingredient listed as propylene glycol, paraffin, butylene glycol, isopropyl alcohol. These oils can actually block and clog pores exacerbating acne. Instead opt for products that contain natural plant oils that provide nourishment.

 

 

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Spring Clean your Beauty Routine

Body, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

Clean out your makeup If you follow me then you know I’m all about green beauty. Out with the old and in with the new. At the start of each new season you should clear out your old makeup. Lipsticks can last over 6 months but just to be sanitary, wipe them off with alcohol just to ensure you’re not applying bacteria to the lips. The biggest health concern is with mascara. You should toss out your mascara after 3 months. If you haven’t switched your mascara out yet here are a few natural alternatives:

100 Percent Pure Black Tea

Red Apple Lipstick Mascara

 

Change your daily moisturizer- The cold winter months leaves your skin needing a rich moisturizer. Since most of us don’t have the same skin care needs all year round you may need to switch to a lighter moisturizer for the spring and summer. Make sure that your sunscreen contains an spf of at least 30. I notice brown girls feel that we don’t need to use sunscreen as much as our other sisters however we do, especially for those who have problem skin or suffer with dark spots. Here are a few non-toxic spf moisturizers I personally like:

100 Percent Pure Green Tea Oil Free Moisturizer

Devita Naturals Solar Protective Moisturizer 

Real Purity Zinc Oxide Sunscreen

 

Increase Hair Hydration- Our hair still needs moisture even in the warmer months. Staying in the sun for long periods of time can actually dry the hair out. Taking long breaks in between washes can leaving your tresses thirty. Try washing your hair at least every 5-7 days. Because our hair contains up to 80 percent water you cannot properly moisturize without water. After washing apply leave-in conditioners that list water as one of the first ingredients. These are creamy water based leave-ins that I keep in my personal stash:

Karen’s Body Beautiful Sweet Ambrosia

Soultanicals Knot Sauce

Camille Rose Naturals Curl Love Moisture Milk

 

Brighten up your palette- Spring is all about bright beautiful bold colors. Try introducing new nail polish and lipstick colors that match the season. I personally love pinks, purples, and even yellow. Don’t be afraid to venture out and experiment with colors you’ve never used before.

Real Purity Dew Berry Lipstick

100 Percent Pure Primrose Fruit Pigmented Lipstick

Au Naturale Organic Lipstick in Wild Lotus

 

Exfoliate, Exfoliate-Our skin can accumulate a lot of dead skin during the winter. Of course we all like to show some skin come spring and summer. Show off your beautiful glowing skin by regular exfoliation. You can exfoliate up to 3 times weekly. Opt for a natural body scrub that contains sea salts and sugars with natural oils that slough off the dead skin to reveal a smooth bright complexion. Try these gentle yet effective body scrubs:

100 Percent Pure Lavender Body Scrub

Shea Moisture  Super Fruit Hand & Body Scrub 

 

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Why Women of Color Should Opt for Non-Toxic Cosmetics

Body, Health, Info & Tips, Lifestyle, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

When I refer to women of color I don’t just mean those of Black or African decent. The term includes women from a wide variety of backgrounds including Latina, Native American, Asian, and Indian. As a fellow brown girl my passion and drive for creating this blog is to serve as a resource and motivation to chose organic and all natural options when it comes to cosmetics. My goal with this blog is to at least get women to consider their health when purchasing beauty products and to show that there are safer alternatives.

 

Cosmetics are a $71 billion industry. Of that number women of color spend close to three times as much than any other group. Cosmetic products marketed to women of color have improved in providing safer ingredients. The natural hair care industry has grown from only a select few companies to several; most of which are now offered in local beauty supply stores and big box retailers. I remember a time when there were only a select few available exclusively online.

 

According to the Environmental Working Group many ingredients used in traditional personal care products are known carcinogens, which have been linked to breast cancer. Unfortunately in the United States there is no system in place to regulate potentially toxic ingredients in cosmetics. Cosmetic companies are not required to have their products tested for safety by the FDA or any other agency. This means we as consumers have to be careful to read our labels and understand the ingredients in the products we use in and on our bodies daily.

 

The average US woman uses beauty products that contain nearly 200 different chemicals. Of these chemicals many include parabens, mercury, artificial dye, phthalates, formaldehyde, and toluene. All of these substances have been proven to cause many adverse health risks with prolonged use. Some of these health concerns are fibroid tumors, infertility, birth defects, hair loss, cancer, and this is just to name a few! Women of color are at a greater risk for these fibroids, breast cancer, and other diseases.

 

I often hear women of color especially in the black community stay away from certain ingredients in their hair care products but why not extend that to your makeup, skincare, and other beauty products. While it may sound overwhelming at first you can make small changes one product at a time. As a woman of color I understand where the challenge comes to finding cosmetics that are a perfect match. Hopefully this blog will introduce you to some natural alternatives that won’t compromise your health in the name of beauty.

 

Here are some resources if you want to do more research:

Story of cosmetics

Safe Cosmetics.org

Environmental Working Group

 

 

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