If we’re all honest, one of the hardest parts of going clean with our beauty routines has been in the mascara department. We talk about it, review it, rant about it and survey you all repeatedly for new and exciting things we haven’t tried. Thankfully, some of our favorite brands have or are cooking up mascara formulas this year.
Though I’ve been a makeup lover since middle school, I haven’t been a department-store makeup buyer ever (I was likely just too young to have enough disposable income of my own before I switched to clean cosmetics). So when clean community members lament for their Chanel, Clinique or Dior lash enhancers, I can’t relate. What I can relate to is the endless search for mascara that actually DOES SOMETHING.
I have long, dark blonde lashes and I’m in a constant search for something that coats and volumizes. I used to think that wasn’t much to ask, but the more I try, the more I find that clean mascara versions do one or the other—not what I want. I used to buy three different drugstore brands to get the one look I wanted (hey, I’m picky).
So what do I want? Thick but not blatant. Long but not spidery. Almost-black, but not in-your-face. No flakes. No smudging under my eyes. Isn’t crazy hard to remove so that I can keep my lashes in tact.
Impossible? I don’t think so. If dirty brands can do it, so can clean brands!
Now, let’s talk about Juice Beauty’s Lash Defining Mascara, launched last fall. When I heard about it, I was pumped because I lurve their CC Cream and was hoping they’d hit another home run. Plus, the more reviews and up-close-and-personal lashes photos I saw online, the more promising the new mascara became.
What I was first impressed with was the heftiness of the tube—this guy is sturdy. It feels significant in your hand, like it’s ready to do some lash-coating damage. Plus, it’s pretty minimalist in packaging design, which I really like. Silver with clean black writing is classic.
It has a bristles brush, not a molded brush like the recent releases from ILIA Beauty, Alima Pure and Kjaer Weis, so if you’re on that bandwagon, stay away from Juice. I personally love the bristle brush feel and think it works better at giving me volume.
And volume this puppy gives. Even just one coat of the stuff pumps up my lashes like my old competitive-dance-days favorite, L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara. It gives me the length I want (which is really just coating my lashes to their tips) and the volume my thin, naturally curled lashes need. I usually do two coats of it to make sure I reach each lash.
It has little to no scent, which is also something I love. Some of the natch brands I’ve used (save for 100% Pure’s yummy choco-scented beauty) have a lingering musty or herbal smell that irritates my senses. This one skips scent all together.
It also washes off pretty easily with my normal face wash and water, but I do make sure to give my peepers a good, gentle rub before rinsing. Which brings me to the only thing I don’t love about Juice’s mascara: It flakes after a few hours. Not racoon-eye smudging, but noticeable-if-you’re-looking tiny black flecks. So on days that I wear it, I keep my compact handy to check between meetings. A quick swipe usually removes the droppings, but that’s my biggest complaint. I still use it on days I want the darker color (shown here in black—I usually use the Dark Chocolate from 100% Pure for a black-brown), especially at night to boost my going-out face a little more.
Ok, your turn: Have you tried Juice’s Lash Defining Mascara? Any thoughts? Or ways I can avoid the flaking?
Unless you’re living under an Internet-free rock (which you aren’t since you read our blog!), you know that New York Fashion Week just wrapped up, leaving all fashion and beauty related bloggers and readers with tons of info on new trends and colors.
Interested in what the hot NYFW looks were, but don’t care to rummage through all the blogs and slideshows and tweets yourself? You’re in luck: We’ve got a quick summer-to-fall transitional beauty guide, complete with NYFW-approved trends and just generally good-to-know beauty info. Enjoy!
Lips: If summer was all about the fuschia matte look, fall deepens things with burgundy lips. You’ve probably already seen the glossy or matte versions of the deep red lip everywhere – time to try it yourself with Osmia Organics Luster gloss. With its color derived from beets, Luster’s burgundy gloss avoids dyes and scary ingredients to bring us a lovely red shade with moisturizing staying power.
Eyes: Colored eyeliner that throws back to the good ol’ 80s and 90s is all over the place for the fall. Bright teal, neon purple, electric blue – you name it, you can find it. Try picking a shade that complements your eye color (teal or emerald for greenies, purple for browns, bright blues for blues). I’m a big fan of Jane Iredale’s Mystikol liners (not too dry, not too smudgy) and her line has colors galore.
Eyebrows: Not a big colored-liner fan (or just not ready to bite the bullet on a color you’re not sure will be in next month)? Fall’s trend is leaning even more toward big brows with natural skin (we’ll get to the skin in a minute). I promise you, if there’s one of these transitions to try, enhancing your eyebrows is one of them. Defining your brows with a little powder can instantly change your face, and since your brows are naturally darker than your hair color, adding a little color to them doesn’t feel cray cray. Try W3LL PEOPLE’s Capitalist Versatile Mineral Brow Pigment with a short, flat brush for application. And trust me on this one: get a shade lighter than you think.
Skin: Clean, natural skin is the way to go this fall. For those of us who don’t have perfect, makeup free skin, a tinted moisturizer is key. We’ve raved about Juice Beauty’s CC Cream on the site before, and I’d definitely recommend it as a base for your face. If you’re looking for a little more coverage, try 100% Pure’s Healthy Skin Foundation. I used it for my wedding and I still couldn’t be happier with it. Top it off with a luminizer (RMS Beauty’s Living Luminizer is in all our makeup bags, but ILIA Beauty’s luminizers kill it too) to get the natural-glowing-skin that’s in.
Nails: Nail trends are going in two separate directions this fall. The first is natural nails, which gives us all a great reason to buy RGB’s nail foundation. It comes in an array of colors for all skin tones and it’s meant to give you polished look without color on your nails. If you’re looking for color, you’re going to want to check out a mossy gray-green, a grayish navy blue or a metallic silvery gray. Use any of these colors to do a solid base – or try out the half moon mani that was all over runways.
What trends did you see that you’re in love with? What other recs do you have for the fall season?
I’m not one of those girls who’s dreamed of getting married since she was old enough to understand the words “bride” and “groom.” I never fantasized wedding dresses or centerpieces. I didn’t wish for a Prince Charming to sweep me off my feet (sorry, fiancé, if you’re reading this).
But what I did dream about was a legit excuse to buy as many beauty products as I wanted. A reason to try 13 different eye shadows. An excuse to spend three hours searching the Internet for the perfect shade of lip gloss. A reason to splurge a little.
My pending nuptials seem like the perfect excuse. I gave myself a little longer of a leash than usual, and went all out. Here’s a few tips that I learned along the way, plus the products that I think will give me the natural-me-but-better look for my big day.
One thing I don’t want to have to worry about on my wedding day is my makeup melting. In order to stay off the sweaty train, two things are key: a good primer and a layering of different types of makeup.
I start with ARCONA’s Desert Mist, a daily primer and skin protectant. It seals in moisture and helps create a smooth base for all your subsequent blending. I’ve also heard Amala’s Purifying Mattifier is a good one.
- Liquid foundation: I already gave this puppy its due on the blog last week, but I can’t say enough how excited I am to have found 100% Pure Healthy Skin Foundation. It has silky coverage without making me look like I’m in a theatre production of “Cats,” it doesn’t melt off and it doesn’t give me too much of a “glow” (I’m not really a dewy-skin lover). I stipple it on with a Beauty Blender because it’s awesome and works better than a sponge or a brush or my fingers (I’ve tried them all, people) to get even, not-cakey coverage.
- Sticky-ish liquid concealer: I do this concealer from Mineral Fusion* (which comes with two colors so you can mix a custom for your skintone) OVER my foundation. Otherwise the stippling takes it all off.
- Mineral foundation: Something to remember, which will come up later when we talk about eyeshadow—you want to avoid shimmer and glitter and sparkly-ness on your wedding day. They create bounce-back when your photog snaps glamour shots of you and your S.O., which can wreck the images and make you look older than you actually are. And NO ONE wants that. So, the mineral foundation I use is a totally matte one that we’ve recommended on the blog before: Alima Pure. So many colors. So much lovely, soft coverage. It’s the bomb.com. The only thing I’ve ever loved as much as it was Jane Iredale’s PurePressed Foundation, which is a bit pricier.
- Blush: I am NOT a rosy girl. I much prefer a little color in the form of a bronzer (no shimmer) but for the wedding-day, I want to look more polished than usual. So, I went back a tried-and-true matte blush (remember how I said to avoid shimmer? Blush is included here.): Alima Pure Satin Matte Blush in Pink, a literally universally flattering shade.
- Luminizer: Now, I said before shimmer is baaaad. And I stand by that statement… until photos are through. Then I’m going to dab a little of (the best beauty product in the world) RMS’ Living Luminizer in the inner corners of my eyes, down the bridge of my nose and on my cupid’s bow. Glow-ing.
This was where most of my searching, researching and testing happened. I just had a tricky time finding a matte (are you sick of that word yet?) eyeshadow palette that was flattering and contouring enough. So, I mixed my own.
- Eyeshadow: I bought a load of samples from W3LL PEOPLE (thank you to any and all clean lines that offer this service—it is the best thing ever) and ended up finding my perfect shade in a slightly unlikely place—the mineral brow pigment. I use a medium shade on my lid (Matte Taupe) and a darker shade in my crease (Matte Espresso).
- Eyeliner: For all-day wear, liquid liner is your best bet. I haven’t found a clean one that I lurve, so I improvise by creating my own. I do a thin line on my top lid only (don’t want any bleeding under my eyes on my big day) of Jane Iredale’s Eye Pencil in Black Brown. Then, I dip a stiff eyeliner brush in water before dabbing it in Modern Minerals’ loose mineral eyeliner in Cocoa. I gently enhance the Jane Iredale line with this deep chocolate shade, thickening the line a bit.
- Mascara: I looove me some mascara. I already have long, curled lashes (my hair stylist asked me last week if I’d gotten eyelash extensions after I swiped on one coat of black-brown mascara) but I need some additional thickening. To get the look I want, I use two mascaras in sequence: a) 100% Pure Fruit Pigmented Mascara in Dark Chocolate (it actually smells like I’m swiping melted dark chocolate on my lashes, which is just an added bonus to its lengthening power). b) Josie Maran GOGO Instant Natural Volume Argan Mascara in Pitch Black. This baby thickens and darkens, giving me almost-falsies.
My lips are SENSITIVE, so I’ve tried many a balm, stick, gloss and stain in order to find the perfect one that doesn’t make my lips swell and flake. I also didn’t want one with too much color, as I’m doing a heavier eye than I normally would. In order to get that my-lips-but-better look, I’m using two products:
- Dr. Hauschka’s Lip Liner in Soft, Muted Rose. It’s almost exactly the shade of my natural lips, so I’m only using it to help my real color stay on longer. Creating a base of a stickier substance, like the liner, helps hold color in place (since I’m not jumping on the 14-hour dirty lip color train).
- My holy grail of lip color and gloss: RMS Beauty’s Lip Shine in Bloom. Confession: I own ALL the colors of the Lip Shine. I love them so much – they go on sheer but can be layered for more color. They leave a light stain so even once the gloss wears off, I still have a little color. And Bloom is the perfect shade to make me look super put together on a no-makeup day or enhance my lips for a special occasion (aka, my wedding).
That’s it peeps. Seems like a lot, but I think it’ll all help me feel confident about looking my best on wedding day (t minus three days…). What products did you use for your wedding? What did I miss?
We’ve talked about the 100% Pure line multiple times (here, here, here and here, for starters) and it shows up in many a morning routine. But we have yet to really cover one of their makeup standouts: the Healthy Skin Foundation with Super Fruits.
Now I know it’s summer and the last thing some of us are looking for is a full-coverage liquid foundation that adds dew to our already-sweaty faces and then melts off as the temperature rises. Good news: This one does neither of those things.
My love affair began as I searched for a full-coverage foundation for my wedding at the end of August (!). What my initial search revealed was that “full-coverage” to me means something completely different than it means to a makeup artist—or anyone who writes the copy on foundation descriptions. I was searching for something to even out my skin tone and significantly reduce the appearance of any blemishes I have (crossing my fingers that number is ZERO come the last weekend in August).
I was NOT looking for something that made my face look airbrushed, or covered my freckles. I did not realize how difficult a task this was. I also did not want something that would be dewy. I wanted matte. I wanted nothing to add to the greasiness I know will build over the course of my wedding day.
Apparently these two things in combination are really hard to come by in the clean beauty world. I tried samples of eight different clean brands—and even started considering going dirty, just this once.
Then I tried 100% Pure’s Healthy Skin Foundation. It touts that it has full-coverage and a “satin matte” finish, so I was simultaneously excited and skeptical, as I’d been burned by full-coverage friends before.
It was love at first blend. The foundation melted into my skin just the way I’d imagined. The finish was satin matte, just as promised. My blemishes were hidden. My skintone was evened. And my heart was happy.
But the best part is that it lasted. I really put it to the test by wearing it for my engagement pics, out in the unshaded meadows of a 97-degree, 80%-humidity evening. Two and half hours later, my face looked just as good as it had when I’d left my air-conditioned apartment. That’s staying power.
Have you tried 100% Pure’s foundation? Are there other makeup powerhouses out there that I need to know about before my wedding day? Share, please!
Ingredients: Ingredients: 15% Titanium Dioxide, 10% Zinc Oxide Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice1, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, Pigmented Extracts of: Prunus Persica (Peach) Fruit, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Fruit, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa Bean) and Lycium Chinese (Goji Berry) Fruit, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai Berry) Fruit Oil, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Extracts of: Cerifera Cera (Candelilla Wax), Organic Camellia Sinensis (Ferment White Tea) Leaf2, Coffea Arabica (Coffee Cherry) Seed, Aristotelia Chilensis (Maqui Berry), Vitis Vinifera (Muscadine Grape) Skin, Garcinia Mangostana (Mangosteen) Peel, Malpighia Punicifolia (Acerola) Fruit, Sambucus Canadensis (Elderberry), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed, Lonicera Caprifolium (Japanese Honeysuckle)
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of meeting a lovely young woman named Jessica, who told me that after a move across the country, a bout of bad skin, and a run-in with No More Dirty Looks, she’d decided to transition completely to clean beauty products.
Naturally, I invited her to share her thoughts with the rest of the class, mainly because it can be hard for some of us to remember what it’s like when you first discover that the products you’ve long trusted actually totally suck. Do you throw our book against the wall and decide it’s all BS? Do you ransack your entire bathroom at once? We’ve long recommended that people go slow, first replacing products they use daily and over a large area of their body (shampoo, soap, sunscreen, body lotion). Next, we often recommend what we like to call “gateway” brands: Naturals that are good enough, if not perfectly clean. These are usually easier to find, more affordable, and they smell and perform more like conventional products—which is great for not scaring people off. Finally, that perfect red you wear on nights out should be the last to go, if it goes at all (we still have ours!). Jessica seems to get all this! Which is great.
She’s is employing a one-in/one-out system, buying new products as she runs out of the old, and so far, she’s loving the results. Her skin has transformed, she’s gone rogue with some DIY recipes, and she’s loving every minute of it.
Here, her story:
Hometown: New York, NY
Current weather: Swings from grey and cold to sunny and cool: 30s-60s, high humidity.
Hair: Thick, shiny black strands that naturally fall in piece-y, poufy waves
Skin: Olive-toned combination skin—normal skin with an oily and pimple-prone T-zone
I fantasize about being a clean beauty queen but for now, I’m the new girl. I recently divorced from mega-ultra-plumping synthetic-fiber mascara and I’m freshly freed from a decade-long salicylic acid bender. Don’t get me wrong—I wasn’t trying to poison myself. I’ve never dyed my hair, I cook my own meals to avoid eating weird junk out, and—don’t tell—I use antiperspirant sparingly when temperatures allow. But despite my good intentions, I was still drowning myself in toxins.
My facial routine was especially heinous: for the past 10 years, I’d been stripping my face night and day with harsh cleansers and a thick layer of salicylic acid, then smothering it with thick, greasy moisturizers to stem peeling.
My wake-up call wasn’t pretty, but it did the trick: Within days of my mid-winter move from central Texas to the Big Apple, I found myself sporting a face full of flaky skin. By a stroke of luck, I discovered No More Dirty Looks around the same time, and knew I’d found the solution I needed—badly. Resisting the compulsion to purge my medicine cabinet, I triaged, tackling my dysfunctional skin regimen first. I sprang for Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Spot Treatment, which contains a low concentration of natural salicylic acid extracted from willow bark. I also bought a bar of Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Soap to replace my body and facial cleansers, switched to a Eucerin daily lotion with titanium dioxide and zinc oxide for cleaner sun protection, and snagged a bottle of extra virgin olive oil from the kitchen for a pure nightly moisturizer. I braced myself for the worst, worried I’d wake to a constellation of new zits. Instead of looking revolting, however, my skin glowed in response: Smooth and blemish-free.
I have a new addiction now—natural beauty. I’ve committed to replace any product I run out of (or accidentally drop in the trash) with a clean alternative. So far, I’ve treated my lashes to Josie Maran’s GOGO Instant Natural Volume Argan Mascara and taken to eos lip balm, which is free of parabens and petrolatum. Now, I’m on the hunt for a good replacement for undereye concealer—a challenge, since I try to keep my beauty purchases under $30. My hair products are next on the chopping block, and I can’t wait to see the results. Clean beauty veterans—let me know which shampoos and hair products you’re loving!
So let’s help a girl out. What affordable undereye concealer are you loving? And hair—what do you think she should start with?