Who is joining us at A Night For Green Beauty in L.A. on August 7th? We hope to meet so many of you, and we want you to know all about the 23 brands participating in this event. Here are 5 picks from some of my favorite ANFGB brands. Whether your face, body, or mind needs a boost—these babies have you covered.

H. Gillerman Organics Stress Remedy — If you have never experienced an aromatherapy blend from this line, Stress Remedy is the place to start. Who doesn’t need a little stress relief? The scent gets its kick from lavender, vetiver, red mandarin, tangerine, sandalwood, blood orange, and clary sage. It’s pure essential oil—no carrier oil—so a little dab will do. The Stress Remedy functions as a reset button for me. I don’t know if essential oils can technically have an adaptogenic affect, but this blend behaves in that way, giving me just what I need when I need it—be it a little lift or a big chill. I read about it first from Alexandra, who was totally right about this affecting not only your energy, but the energy of those around you in the most good-witch way. My friends ask if I’m carrying it in my bag so they can snatch a swipe, and it makes perfect strangers on the train smile and talk about fresh gardens. All that and it brings me actual physical and mental peace.

 

MUN No.1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum — This is the kind of minimalism in natural skincare that I crave—a short and exquisite ingredient list composed of the highest quality organic oils available. No.1 Aknari is so simple, yet it makes such a difference in just a few days. The scent is both unusual and familiar, a spicy rose that lingers and warms on the skin. The Bulgarian rose oil lends its heady aroma while rejuvenating and brightening your skin tone. Coupled with prickly pear seed and argan oils, these nutrient dense oils calm inflammation, repair skin discoloration, and help inhibit those fine lines from taking shape. No.1 Aknari is the perfect viscosity—not too heavy, not too dry—and leaves a silky matte finish. It makes a gorgeous base for makeup and adds a nourishing touch to your evening routine. You will love the way your skin looks in the morning—brightened, calm, and plumped. There’s a reason No.1 Aknari has a cult following. Bye bye fine lines. Hello perfectly balanced skin.

 

Indie Lee Clearing Mask — What if I told you there’s an all-natural mask that’s a dead ringer for the Noxzema cleanser of your youth? I mean that in the most endearing way, because who didn’t have fun with all those classic products until we discovered how dirty they actually are? Indie Lee’s Clearing Mask is a thickly whipped, white cream with a camphorous scent that smells oh so clean and antiseptic. During application, it gives you that same hopeful surge of teenage excitement that screams this feels like it’s working so it must be working! Except in this case, the Clearing Mask actually does its job, making this the real deal no matter how nostalgic I feel about that dirty doppelgänger. Clogged pores are no match for ingredients like bentonite, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid. Chamomile extract, seaweed extracts, and hyaluronic acid protect and hydrate, so not only do my pores feel clean and refined, my skin also feels plumped after removal. Bonus—you can leave this mask on for ages and your face won’t crack. Application and removal are a dream.

 

Alima Pure Luminous Shimmer Eyeshadow in Chai — If you were to inspect my makeup collection, you’d quickly discover I have a thing for Alima Pure eyeshadow. They have the best color selection around. The eyeshadows can be soft or super pigmented, they come in three different finishes, and they are refreshingly affordable items to splurge on. This summer I’ve found my all-time favorite color to date—Chai Luminous Shimmer. This is a rose gold that I suspect would work well on just about anyone. Other gold tones, like yellow or peachy varieties, make me feel more “made up”, whereas this rose gold highlights the eyes in a softer way. It’s fresh paired with bare, curled eyelashes and a pale peach lip-gloss for a light summer look. True to its name, Chai does shimmer, but not in that sparkle-wars way. It can be subdued or played up, depending on your mood. I’ll be rocking this at A Night For Green Beauty and well into the fall season.

 

Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin C Body Oil — Trust me when I say this is heaven in a bottle. It shares the same fruity and sweet scent as the Vitamin B Cleansing Oil, a scent that truly deserves the chance to shine in a less fleeting manner. The Vitamin C Body Oil is pure happiness and sunshine and I crave it. This is another unique, winning product from OLO. In fact, I’ve never tried anything like it! The consistency is quite thick, almost milky, and intensely moisturizing. Don’t be afraid to use this during the summer, though. It spreads and absorbs easily, especially when applied to wet or damp skin fresh out of the shower (I highly recommend this method as you barely need any product to get good coverage). What makes this body oil truly stand out is the active combination of vitamin C ester and papaya enzymes, which gently exfoliate to reveal smooth, even-toned skin. Genius! So much care goes into formulating products for our face, but our bodies need attention, too! Consistent use gives great results, so check this out if your skin is feeling dull and needs brightening.

Spill it! Have you tried these all-star products? What do you love?

 

 

 

 

We’ve been having loads of fun sharing Makeup Bags and Morning Routines from the brand founders participating in A Night For Green Beauty. If you love to nerd out on natural ingredients and skincare, there’s no better behind-the-scenes foray. That’s because the people who create these products are real-life formulators, dreamers, and in many cases healers. Think about it! Haven’t you experienced a healing moment from something in your natural skincare arsenal? And when you do, isn’t it sweet relief? All that and glamorous to boot—we’ve come a long way, green beauty.

While we’re stoked to introduce you to these founders via our Makeup Bag and Morning Routine series, we are eager to share why, from our perspective, we love these brands. So here it goes, the first in a series of #ANFGB all-star product round-ups.

Josh Rosebrook Active Enzyme Exfoliator — This gorgeous line is packed with active herbal extracts and botanical goodness. The Active Enzyme Exfoliator is a star example of Josh Rosebrook’s formulating prowess. It is fresh and herbaceous, smelling of fennel and honey. The organic honey base is blended with finely crushed walnut shells (no scratchy bits to speak of), a host of herbal extracts, and papaya enzymes. The fruit enzymes take the exfoliator to the next level by aiding in the gentle turnover of skin cells, leaving a clean slate, so to speak. I use this exfoliator like a mask and smear it on at least 15 minutes before I shower. I get the aromatherapy benefits of the lemon, cypress, and fennel essential oils while the enzymes and herbs work their magic. Then I gently massage it around my face and rinse.  It leaves my skin polished and hydrated, and my senses invigorated. For my Pitta skin type it’s gentle enough for daily use.

 

Odacité Wild Carrot Serum Concentrate — If I learned anything from my time in France, it’s that the French have a special reverence for carrots. Composed of wild carrot oil that has been hand-pressed in a small French village using the same traditional methods for over 200 years, you’ll be reeling from the glow Odacité’s Wild Carrot Serum gives, if not the soft earthy scent. This is one of the 18 concentrates in Odacité’s Pure Elements Collection. These skin boosters are designed to be mixed into your regular moisturizer for an added dose of whatever your skin needs. Skincare cocktail anyone?  Carrot oil is an incredible skin rejuvenator (thank you beta carotene and vitamin A), so it’s especially good for damaged or aging skin. The serum blends easily with other creams and oils, and it’s lovely all by itself, too. It really sinks into skin and is potent but gentle, a great example of the power of high quality botanical ingredients. This is simple and effective skincare at its finest, and I can’t wait to try more of Odacité’s Pure Elements Collection. I’m hoping they bring all 18 to ANFGB!

 

Province Apothecary No. 19 Charm Parfum Botanique — When I learned that Province Apothecary was participating in ANFGB, I began to look into the line and was thrilled to find that in addition to skincare, they create perfume and aromatherapy oils. As an introduction, I received samples of Province Apothecary’s 6 perfume oils. While I loved all of them, I was absolutely smitten with No. 19 and ordered a full-size in a hurry. I’ve been on a bit of a geranium kick, and this roll-on perfume contains two types — South African Rose Geranium and Egyptian Geranium — along with French Lavender. The essential oils are blended in a base of organic jojoba oil, which gives this an extra long shelf life. The aroma is true to its description — soft, efflorescent, and romantic. The scent stays close to your body and is long lasting but never cloying. A little sweet, rosy, and floral with a slight green note, No. 19 leaves me feeling relaxed, balanced, and oh so feminine. The true test? While sitting around a table with some lady friends, I passed around No. 19 (my friends are routinely subjected to whatever natural perfumes are in my purse) and every one of them swooned and sampled it on their own skin.

Tell us what you love from Josh Rosebrook, Odacité, and Province Apothecary! We love hearing your recommendations, too.

Happy Monday! We’re taking a moment for this super important announcement because we don’t want you to miss out…

The second Deluxe Beauty Box from A Night For Green Beauty and Goodebox goes on sale today at 9am ET!

The box features 7 full size products from natural beauty brands that are participating in A Night For Green Beauty (August 7th in LA! Be there!). This collection is pretty insane—it’s well over $300 of to-die-for products that you’ll get for $110, if you nab one of the fifty available. ANFGB and Goodebox are donating 100% of the Deluxe Beauty Box proceeds to the charity Baby2Baby. The products were also donated by the brands, so it’s truly a collective effort from the green beauty community to give back.

Here’s what’s included in the second Deluxe Beauty Box:

1. May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon

2. Sheswai Nail Lacquer

3. Zoe Organics Cream

4. One Love Organics Skin Savior

5. Gressa Rejuvenating Mist

6. Josh Rosebrook Firm Hold Hairspray

7. Alima Pure Natural Mascara

Stunning that you can get all of that for $110, and all to help a great cause, right? Don’t forget to take photos of your Deluxe Beauty Box and tag #ANFGB, #Baby2Baby, or #Goodebox. Some lucky people will be selected as winners in upcoming contests to celebrate #ANFGB. Don’t delay, because the first limited edition box sold out in hours!

One of the pleasures of my job is that I get to travel to Denver, Colorado from time to time. My recent visit coincided perfectly with one of the coolest events I’ve ever been a part of—a foraging and tea blending workshop hosted by R.L. Linden & Co. and Dram Apothecary. I’ve just barely scratched the surface here on NMDL when it comes to how much love I have for R.L Linden. The ladies behind R.L. Linden dreamed up the workshop with Shae Whitney, the woman behind Dram Apothecary, who hand makes bitters and syrups using organic and wild Colorado herbs. This herbal alchemy dream-team dubbed their endeavor Witch & Bitch, and they will be hosting seasonal foraging and tea blending workshops for the foreseeable future.

Witch & Bitch is described as a badass Girl Scouts for grown women. The event is held in the tiny mountain town of Silver Plume, Colorado—about an hour outside of Denver and 9200ft above sea level. The workshop takes place at Bread Bar, which is Dram Apothecary’s tasting room and one of the most charming of another era places you’ll ever visit. Believe me, it’s magical. The Witch & Bitch workshop began with a talk about herbs and wild crafting while guests sipped tea blends specially concocted for the day. Then our hostesses led the group on a plant walk and taught everyone how to identify the different types of plants growing all around us, how to forage responsibly, and how to put the plants to good use. Trust me, their herbal wisdom is on point. Among our findings were wild rose, shepherd’s purse, uva ursi, yarrow, chocolate mint, caraway, wild rhubarb, and more. Once you learn to see these plants, you notice them all around you.

A tea blending workshop followed the plant walk. We were given an empowering talk on the healing properties of herbal teas, including an introduction to the 20 or so individual ingredients that were available for us to sniff, touch, and taste such as skullcap, nettle, rose petals, and blessed thistle. Then it was time for hands-on tea blending. Each of us made our own blend from the different ingredients, using the newly imparted knowledge from Lynn’s talk to guide our choices. The day ended with a round of fresh cocktails blended with Dram bitters, delicious refreshments, and even better conversation with lovely women all around. I’ll be going out of my way to attend the next Witch & Bitch.

Can’t make it to Colorado? R.L. Linden + Verdant Beauty is hosting a tea blending workshop in Brooklyn on June 26th at the Brooklyn Winery! Check out the details and sign up before it sells out.

image via Crunchy Betty

If you ask me, the beauty of the natural skincare movement is that you don’t have to drop tons of dough to find an effective routine. Not everyone is inclined toward DIY, and I get that, but I wanted to share a DIY product that’s so simple, so cheap, and so effective it kinda blew my mind—it’s a toner made from thyme steeped in witch hazel.

So here’s my story. A few months ago I rekindled my love affair with yoga—the kind that makes me sweat like nothing else. Though my mind, body, and spirit were feeling tiptop, I quickly broke out across my shoulders. It’s something I’ve come to expect when I work up a sweat routinely, but this was particularly bad. I instantly went into treatment mode, determined to have clear skin. I diligently cleansed morning and night (and immediately following yoga), and used a variety of natural acne products that were antiseptic and relied on salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and lactic acid to turn over skin cells and unclog pores. It didn’t work. With summer approaching and sundresses on my mind, I began to panic.

Then I remembered thyme. We’ve talked about this ubiquitous herb and its acne fighting powers before. Remember the study Alexandra discussed that showed a tincture of thyme to be more powerful at treating the bacteria that causes acne than benzoyl peroxide? (As a little reminder, benzoyl peroxide is HORRIBLE for you.) I also remembered Ann’s Blemish Banish Oil, a DIY recipe that a reader submitted, and I was inspired. I did a little Googling, and found a simple thyme toner recipe that looked like it would do the trick.

Oh. My. God. After one use, I stopped getting new blemishes. After a week of use my skin was 95% clear. Two weeks in and I’m never looking back. I am still shocked by the simplicity and effectiveness of this toner. If you have trouble with breakouts, do not hesitate to try this. It’s gentle and it works. Here’s how I made it:

  • Add 2-3 tablespoons of dried organic thyme to a sterilized bottle or jar.
  • Pour 6 tablespoons of witch hazel on top (I used this alcohol-free witch hazel).
  • Shake up the mixture and allow the thyme to steep for 3 days.
  • The witch hazel will turn brown thanks to the thyme. That’s good!
  • Strain the thyme and store your toner in a cool, dark place for up to a month.

Pro tip: Go ahead and make two small batches at the same time. You can begin using one after a few days of steeping and allow the other to continue to steep until you run out of the first bottle. Now go fight some acne.

Have you had any luck with thyme? What’s your go-to treatment for breakouts?