Update: If you tried the other code earlier with no luck, we have a NEW code for a site-wide 15% off!
Ahhhh, summer just got a little bit better for us clean girls. This fine Friday we have beloved NuboNau here, offering a discount across ALL of their makeup brands–AND THE REST OF THE SITE. Because they are excellent curators that means a deal on RMS, La Bella Donna, Juice Beauty, Living Nature, Dr Hauschka, Mai Couture, Intelligent Nutrients (lip glosses) Vapour, ILIA, Butter London, Piggy Paint, as well as makeup tools and brushes and more. Boom!
Just browse NuboNau’s goodies here, and choose whatever you like and the discount will be applied at checkout. Just use the NN15 promo code, and ta-da.
The deal runs from today all the way to next Thursday—it’s open to US and Canada—and as always you get points with every purchase and a lovely sample set…plus you can use the code as often as you like during the week. Don’t forget to tell fellow readers what brands you’ve tried, and include your own reviews in the comments.
We promise that in the not-too-distant future our reviews are going to be organized in their own section—never cry wolf over here, we know—but they will! Until then you can visit some of our past makeup reviews (including some Morning Routines) here, or search in the tool bar. And while we’re at it, do you follow us on Facebook and get our newsletter? Cause you should. We’re way too busy to be spammy—you’ll get a single email a week at most—so look to the right and sign up there.
And just to get sappy for a second: We were pretty stoked when we last checked our readership stats, so we also just want to say thank you for being a part of the community. And thanks also to NuboNau and the other stores and brands that are helping further the cause for clean beauty.
Have a sunny summer weekend.
your devoted clean girls
Um, why isn’t her makeup running?
The answer to that question isn’t fair (waterproof mascara and liner, obviously). This has been on my mind lately because last week, when it was really hot and gross in New York, my pal and colleague Diana came up to me and said: “As I was sweating off my makeup on the subway platform, it got me thinking: What do experts do? Do you wait to put on makeup at work? Are there tricks? We should do a post about it!”
In this case, we = Prevention.com, where we both work. It was a great idea, so our beauty editor Nina put together this list of fun tips from readers and editors about how they battle melty-makeup face when it’s gross out. They were really fun to read (check them out, seriously) and there were a bunch of natural solutions in there too, including from moi. Here’s what I had to say:
“When it’s super hot, I prefer to use loose minerals set with an organic spray-on face toner. This evens out my skin without looking cakey or adding extra moisture, and it stays put for hours even when I’m sweaty. Also, be sure to keep blotting papers on hand. I love these from Tatcha because they don’t smudge my makeup. Finally, since I wear organic makeup for the most part—which means it isn’t waterproof—I don’t line my undereyes until I get to work.” —Siobhan O’Connor, Deputy Editor
As for hair, I’m all about the washing my hair backwards thing right now, using Acure. I forgo leaveins, and airdry whenever possible. Seems to be working.
But back to makeup: One thing about naturals, we all know, is that by and large they perform differently and they wear and feel distinct from conventional makeup. As these things go, I’m no real pro on the difference, because I never really wore makeup before we wrote the book, mascara and concealer-on-zits excepted. Now I love makeup! But without a sweet silicone-based primer and waterproof mascara, I’m sort of at a loss.
The obvious answer to this is: “Don’t wear a lot of makeup when it’s hot out”—but what if you want to? Or you have a job interview? Or you have a monster on your chin? What then?
Please, share your tips in the comments.
Meet Regina, the kind of woman you’d like to have a sleepover party with because her morning routine starts the night before, when she brews strange and wonderful herbal concoctions before hitting the hay. Also, she had this to say, which kind of made us want to cry (in a good way):
“Before your book, I used to feel like a total freak-monster-hippie for making a lot of my own products. I would cave to the peer pressure of having a fancy tube of something from Sephora to set on my counter or throw in my purse. You guys made me feel totally empowered to keep whipping up my potions!”
Nothing really to say about that other than: Awesome, and screw Sephora with its fancy bottles.
Current weather: Not as hot, but still humid in NYC
Hair: My hair cycles between a pixie cut and waist length. I cut it off, I donate it, I grow it out again. It’s grazing my shoulders now and is pretty thick and oily but prone to weird little frizzies on top.
Skin: Combination/oily, prone to acne. Oh, the great acne migration. At age 12 I had acne all over my forehead (so bad that when I went to my doctor for something entirely different, he gave me a prescription for acne medication), then it moved to my cheeks in my late teens, and now it’s migrated to my chin. It’s WAY better since I stopped using the benzoyl peroxide and started actually moisturizing my skin instead of trying to make it a desert.
Before the shower…
My morning routine starts the night before, when I make my herbal infusion, lately a mixture of nettles, oats, algalfa, rose hips, slippery elm, and marshmallow. It’s your full spectrum of vitamins! I put about 2 tablespoons of my mix in a jar, pour the water over, and cap it tight, leaving it to sit overnight. I get my herbs from NYC’s Flower Power. They’re super friendly and helpful and it’s a great resource for people who are interested in making their own products, from lip balm to medicine. I try to wake up around 4:45 am (my daily commute takes almost an hour and a half, so I try to maximize my time at home) and roll out my mat for an hour of yoga. I’m currently obsessed with classes from yogadownload.com. I pop my headphones in and do my class before anything else. After my yoga, I strain and drink my herbal infusion, while running the water for my shower.
In the shower…
I make my own face cleanser with a mixture of orange peel, ground rose petals, and clay (whatever I have around, currently green clay). I keep it in a jar on the counter and pour out about a tablespoon into my palm. I step into the shower and mix enough water with my cleanser to make it a paste and then clean my face. It is gently exfoliating and seems to be helping my acne. I wash my pits and bits with Dr. Bronners, usually peppermint. If it’s a shaving day, I’ll shave with my Preserve razor and Dr. B’s. I wash my hair about 2x per week, sometimes more if it’s been really gross outside. I have used natural shampoos (Acure Organics lemongrass is my favorite) and the no ‘poo method and straight Dr. Bronners. Currently I’m making my own shampoo with a decoction of black walnut husks, sage leaves, and comfrey leaf, a teaspoon of argan oil, some liquid Dr. Bronner’s and a generous sprinkling of rosemary essential oil. So far, I really like it! My hair feels clean, soft, and smells pretty great too. The black walnut makes the brew dark (for dark-haired ladies like myself) but you can use chamomile if your hair is lighter. Can you tell I’m in love with herbs?
Outside the shower…
I towel off and then brush my teeth with Nature’s Gate toothpaste and my Preserve toothbrush. I comb through my hair right away because I have short, thick bangs and they’ll stick straight out from my head if I don’t coax them down as soon as I get out of the shower. Then I apply my deodorant (also homemade). I tried the various natural deodorants, like Burt’s Bee’s Herbal Deodorant, Tom’s (not sure if that’s clean really), Weleda, etc but none really worked on me. I sweat a LOT and CONSTANTLY. My current deodorant recipe is a mix of shea butter, beeswax, cocoa butter, grapeseed oil, arrowroot powder, a TEENY bit of baking soda (any more than a teaspoon causes angry red skin), a few essential oils, and a dash of shelf stable probiotics. So far it works but I have a feeling I’m going to reformulate when this batch is done and the weather gets even hotter. I make a shea butter based lotion but I only use it if my skin feels dry. I tone my face with a mixture of apple cider vinegar, willow bark tincture, and rose essential oils splashed on my reusable face pads. I was using argan oil for a while as my moisturizer, but lately I’ve been using calendula-infused olive oil.
I tried going barefaced for a while, but the recovering goth kid in me can’t seem to leave the house without eyeliner. So I use Alima Pure Black Matte eyeliner, which is a powder and black, like my soul [Ed's note: LOL!]. I dip my brush in water, mix it with the powder and draw on my signature cat eye. Sometimes I dab on some RMS Beauty un-coverup, most of the time I just use the eyeliner. I don’t do anything to my hair, just comb it and let it dry (mostly because I’m lazy about blow-drying and styling, but partly because no matter how I try to tame it, it does whatever it wants anyway). I put on some lip balm (homemade, again) and that’s it. I love lipstick and I have quite a collection of Ilia lipsticks (love this stuff!) but for some reason I can’t ever remember to reapply, so I only use it if I’m going out somewhere; otherwise the only people who see my lipstick are my fellow early morning commuters.
We’re speechless except to say, again: Awesome. And how do you infuse olive oil with calendula? Do you just stuff it in a jar together and wait?
Happy Tuesday! Here’s another product review from commenter-cum-contributor Rebecca Bailey! Check out last week’s review of 5 Clean Lipsticks for Super-Sensitive Lips, too.
As we’ve talked about here plenty, the first thing in beauty is taking care of the inside—but I’m always happy to find a standout product that enhances beauty from the outside, too. I’m a big fan of Evan Healy (see my morning skin and hair routine over here) and this is my current favorite in her line…
Evan Healy Sea Algae Serum: I first used this a year or two ago, and somehow got off it. I think I was preoccupied with my DIY experiments, and in the colder seasons I wanted something a little heavier. But in these last couple weeks I felt like I needed something light. I’m in love all over again!
It has everything I want in a skincare product. It gives a full sensory experience of great scent and texture, comes in a cute and convenient pump, is a pleasure to put on, and has top-notch performance. Remember that Seinfeld episode with the beachy-smelling perfume? This is what I imagine that was supposed to smell like. The clean ocean smell quickly fades to neutral though, which I appreciate. It feels light and spreads perfectly applied over a hydrosol. Two pumps cover my face, neck and a bit of upper chest. I’m glad it doesn’t take much, because this is on the pricier side, about $37 for a ½ ounce bottle. OK, here’s the important part:
It is the only product I’ve ever tried that actually does some firming.
I’m no spring chicken, and I have this jowl and neck thing going on lately. I don’t think it’s my imagination: My skin looks firmer after using this serum. I can’t speak to the long-term effects yet, but in the short term at least, I’m impressed (and glowing). Super clean with lots of organic ingredients—sea buckthorn is high on the list and it’s intended to repair damage caused by the environment and aging—and it’s anti-inflammatory. I usually prefer a short list of ingredients, but Evan Healy is like an old-school alchemist, really working the magic into her products. This can be used along with your regular moisturizer, or on its own if you just want super-light, healing moisture.
Have you tried this serum, or anything else from this line?
Since you’re here, I’m going to go ahead and assume that you probably like talking beauty—whether you’re fully clean or not.
From a very young age I was always obsessed with products and beauty rituals, and consumed women’s magazines with questionable gusto—from Sassy and Seventeen, to Allure, Harper’s Bazaar and Elle. I relished reading the beauty advice from the editors, as well as from the supermodels—I’m talking Linda, Naomi, and Christy days here—and celebrities they interviewed.
But the magazines have changed, haven’t they? And so have the celebs. It just feels harder and harder to buy that they’re ever offering up an unbiased review, and not just helping sell something. That one time Gisele called sunscreen poison she had to put on her best PR face and eat her words.
Lucky for us, beauty blogs have definitely helped fill the vacuum that good magazines have left. And not every magazine article—I still read Elle and Bazaar with the same excitement—is written to appease some advertiser. But it’s not always easy to tell the difference.
So I’m wondering who women rely on most heavily now for their beauty advice. Is it the customer reviews you read on sites; is it what your friends or sister or mom say that sways you; is it Morning Routines; is it Gwyneth Paltrow? Do you still turn to mags?