Hey everyone! We’re kind of at half-mast right now—doing the whole family and fire thing, and especially enjoying time with our adorable nieces and nephews. But since everyone has a little time on their hands, we thought it’d be fun to post this great morning routine from Natalie. Natalie, thanks for sharing!
Current weather: Winter in Philadelphia! It’s been up and down and I hope it stays consistently cooler…
Hair: Shoulder length, layered, wavy, and brown with highlights in the summer. Thick and a bit course, sebbheaoriec dermatitis on certain spots of my scalp. If I wait too long for a haircut I get split ends given the layering. My scalp tends to get oily while my ends are dry.
Skin: Black heads on my nose and chin, dry cheeks. I get the occasional pimple now and then but everything is much more stable now that my hormones are “under control.”
Favorite star or icon from the past: My mom…but if pressed to choose, Lauren Bacall.
In the shower…
I have a very low maintenance routine and I love it. I usually shower every other day, basically whenever I work out. I use Dr. Bronner’s Lemon Pure Castille Soup on my dirty bits. I also use a coconut oil and sea salt scrub on my arms and shoulders where I have those annoying kerostasis bumps…although they seem to have gotten better now that it’s cooler. I then rub my prescription shampoo, Ketaconozole, the last remaining toxic product in my arsenal, on my scalp, focusing on an area near my left ear where I have a scaly patch caused by dermatitis. I would love to hear if anyone has recommendations for dealing with this. I have tried essential oils but feel that they accelerate hair loss (see more below). I also have not been eating gluten or dairy for over a year and a half now. I tried the baking soda and vinegar routine but it actually worsened things and produced the bad patch near my ear. I also feel that I should be washing my hair daily; but I really can’t force myself to do this since I hate what that does to my hair.
Outside the shower…
After I shower, I face the daunting task of combing my hair. I have PCOS and have struggled with hair loss since quitting the pill 2.5 ago. I currently take spironolactone, which prevents certain hormones from binding and thereby prevents acne and minimizes hair loss. Things are under control now but the process of combing or brushing my hair elicits some serious emotions for me. I am trying to wean myself off of this drug but am still trying to figure out the best way to do so. I had a bout of really bad cystic acne after quitting the pill, weight gain and a year later hair loss, so while I’d like to think that worse is behind me, I also understand that changing things up will have emotional and physical consequences.
In any case, I then put some Alaffia Curl Defining Gel for wavy to curly hair into my hair. I am really in love with this product; it smells absolutely amazing. Now that the weather is dryer my hair doesn’t curl as well, but in the summer this cream was amazing. I usually put some grapeseed oil on my body. I am trying out jojoba for my face, but am still worried it will cause me to break out. I have also been using 100% Caffeine Bean Eye Cream, but can’t say if it’s helped my dark eye circles.
I have also been trying Jason’s Power Smile toothpaste, but am undecided. I know the issues surrounding fluoride, but I had a surprising amount of tooth decay issues this past year. I was a bit disappointed to find this out given my dietary/lifestyle changes and I don’t attribute it to the change in toothpaste (at all!) but yeah…
I was never good at makeup and my old stuff got dumped as soon as I found this site. I was in a wedding in November and was tempted to buy something recommended here, but did not take the plunge. My main qualm right now is my dark eye circles, but I just tell myself that everyone is too worried about their own stuff to notice! :) Sometimes I will wear the Essence of Vali perfume sample I got when I ordered their Calm massage oil and Refresh body spritz…
I just wanted to thank No More Dirty Looks for existing and for producing quality content. It is always a pleasure to read your posts and I really appreciate your commitment to health and beauty!
[You're very kind. We love doing what we do and are just happy to have such active and cool readers.]
Good morning everyone! Meet Andreína and her Alaffia…she is a huge fan of this brand! She also has some great tips–check out her DIY mask recipe. She’s a recent transplant to California, and is certainly making the coast even more lovely with her presence. Read on!
In the shower…
Outside the shower…
Thanks, Andre! Happy to hear you are happy :) Anyone else using Alaffia for the hair? Siobhan reviewed one of their conditioners awhile back here.
Happy Monday, everyone! Meet Stephanie and her sweet-as-honey routine. She swears by Manuka for her skin. She also has been getting a lot of mileage out of spiritbeautylounge sample items. Annnd..she makes her own (edible!) DIY brozer. Read on!
Current Weather: In the 70s-80s and humid-ish. I just moved home from the North so I am loving the warmer weather despite the humidity.
Hair: Long, brown, and sort of curly/wavy. Definitely not straight. The oiliness has become non-existent since my switch to natural products and reduction in showers. Which is great because it saves me a ton of time, I find showering to be a pretty grand and involved event in my life. 23 year old problems clearly.
Skin: I have always been acne prone :( I was on a strict regimen of prescription topical stuff which worked, but I got completely fed up with how dry they left my skin. Right now, I just got off birth control but things are still OK. Residual scarring and the odd small breakout are all I have to worry about now with no dryness!
Favorite Star: Miranda Kerr. Was she already chosen? I just love her values and personality! Image via
Before the shower…
I try to do oil pulling with coconut oil (I use the nutiva brand) which is an ayervedic technique that consists of swishing the oil in my mouth for twenty minutes then rinsing with warm salt water. It’s hard to last the full twenty, but I’ve found it is a great way to naturally whiten the teeth and make my whole mouth/gums feel supple and healthy. I will then usually eat breakfast and workout and also take some skin supplements which I thought could be applicable. I take fish oil or flax seed oil, black current oil and evening primrose oil which are GLAs which are supposed to be beneficial for skin and regulating female stuff as well as Indole-3-Carbinol which I saw was recommended in an article for women coming off the pill again to regulate hormones. I also only brush my hair before I shower with a wide toothed comb.
In the shower…
I’ve usually had a Wedderspoon Manuka Honey 16 strength mask on my face for at least half an hour before my shower and leave it on until the end (this was inspired by Siobhan) which I use as a facial cleanser. If I don’t have time to do a mask I will use the Tata Harper cleanser or the Dr Alkaitis cleanser I have from the samples I purchased on spiritbeautylounge. I like them both and find them super gentle, but prefer the manuka for its anti-acne fight. Manuka honey/honey in general for the face has been a godsend for my skin! Next I shampoo with either Desert Essences lemon and tee tree shampoo for oily hair or Alaffia neem shampoo (both of which I like and find wash away build-up, which was my biggest difficulty when looking for a natural shampoo) followed by either John Masters Lavender and Avocado Intensive Conditioner, the John Masters Honey and Hibiscus conditioner, or the Alaffia neem conditioner. I have recently begun washing my body and shaving with Moksa soap in Abbey Road. It smells amazing, is gentle (I loved Dr. Bronners tea tree bar soap, but then it become too harsh for my skin) and the company is amazing and donates to so many great charities! After that I may spray my hair with the Aubrey organics Nustyle Organic Detangler and Shine Booster (which smells like limes) as a heat protectant or Intelligent Nutrients leave-in conditioner which kind of makes me smell like a pizza, but I like it anyways. (Ed. Note: Pizza?!?!?! We need more info on this! Ha!) Then I wrap my hair up in a t-shirt which I’ve also heard is better to prevent frizz and keep curls intact.
Outside the shower I don’t really towel off because I find the extra moisture super beneficial for the rest of my routine. I spray my face with the Acure Organics Rose toner for oily skin which I LOVE it smells so good especially after reading that article about rose scents on here, then I mix my beloved Aubrey Organics aloe vera with whatever moisturizer is tickling my fancy. I use the aloe because it is such a great base to cut/preserve products which we know can be quite expensive. As I mentioned, I purchased the sample packs of Tata Harper and Dr Alkaitis so I basically pick and choose which moisturizer I feel like mixing in with my aloe. At the moment, I love the Tata Harper Serum and the Dr Alkaitis soothing gel and nourishing oil. Both companies products smells sooooo good and honestly make my skin look so plump and incredible. I never thought I would be able to treat myself to such luxurious moisturizers during my prescription days; it has been one of my greatest revelations of going natural! After that I spray my body with a DIY toner of Aloe Vera gel by Lily of the Valley (which is edible quality that I sometimes add to my drinks) and Witch Hazel followed by a DIY combination of coconut, argan, and jojoba oil, my Acure Organics unscented lotion, or my Bubble and Bee or Moksa body butter. I’m really into body moisturizers. Or moisturizing in general.
As far as makeup goes, I probably wear it once or twice a week and try to keep it really simple. Again, I am all about the samples! I recommend it because they are all quite sizable and I have yet to run out of one and repurchase. I use the Vapour organics concealer on my eyelids and the Alima Pure satin matte foundation on my under eyes and any other imperfections. I line my upper water line with Korres brown eyeliner, apply RMS living luminizer to my eyelids, brow bone, cheekbones, nose, and cupid’s bow and have been loving revolution organics in blush for my cheeks! I also love RMS lip2cheek in Modest. I sometimes finish that up with a DIY bronzer made of cinnamon, nutmeg, cocoa powder, and some other stuff and 100% mascara in black tea as well as my Bubble and Bee lip balm in pomegranate or my Badger Organic cocoa butter lip balm in cocoa.
Thanks, Stephanie! I’m having a hard time not making a “good enough to eat” pun about this routine…
This is another in our ongoing series—which will be around forever now, because you guys keep sending us your awesome routines. This one’s from a reader named Anna who lives in Brooklyn just like me (hi, Anna!). I love her mix of luxurious NMDL-approved clean products and DIY.
Anna seems to be one part no-fuss and one part kind of glam, which is basically our MO, too. Plus, she loves Joanne Woodward. What’s not to love? Let us know in the comments what you think of her routine!
Current weather: Flirting with Spring in Brooklyn. Cold, crisp and sunny today.
Hair: Shoulder-length, growing-out-phase, brown, thick, and wavy.
Skin: My forehead, chin, and nose are pretty awesome. My cheeks are where it gets dry, and also breaks out. I’m pretty fair-skinned, and get freckles in the summer, but tan pretty easily. Basically, if I could get this pesky cheek nonsense figured out, I’d be golden (adult onset acne, awesome).
In the shower…
I shower at night, always. If I go running in the morning, I’ll do an extra rinse-off afterward. Either way, I only use soap (Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint) on my feet, if at all. I only get my hair wet once a week, and either wash with John Masters Organics Bare shampoo and condition with Alaffia Coconut and Shea conditioner, or just do a manual scalp scrubbing with my fingers & follow up with a little ACV. I generally rinse my face with warm water instead of washing, though some days I’ll put some rosehip seed oil on my face and rub that in, then wipe it off with a hot washcloth. A few times a week I exfoliate my cheeks with Acure Organics Brightening Facial Scrub.
Outside the shower…
After spraying with Evan Healy’s Immortelle hydrosol and/or a quick wipe down with witch hazel, I immediately put on some argan oil (either Kahina or Acure), then follow up with Pai Chamomile & Rosehip moisturizer. I asked the folks over at Spirit Beauty Lounge what facial lotion they recommended for dry skin that is also acneic, and they recommended that. I’ve used it for a few months now and find that it hasn’t upset my skin at all, but moisturizes well. For extra dry days, I smear on some shea butter where it’s dry.
On my body, I use a homemade body oil (after I ran out of Evan Healy’s Sweet Blossom body oil, which I love so much. When I get in bed after putting it on, my boyfriend says, “you smell like pepper”—in a good way) with olive oil and vetiver & rose essential oils. The body oil is literally just olive oil (sometimes I’ll add in a little avocado oil) and several drops of rose essential oil and vetiver essential oil. The ratio of rose:vetiver is around 6:1 (vetiver is really strong). At night, several times a week I’ll buff some oil into my nails, wash ‘em off, and apply some Scotch Naturals nail polish.
I never use hair products. I find I don’t need them, plus I’m pretty easy-does-it about my hair. Most days, since I’m growing it out and that’s sorta painful, I’ll throw it up in a low side bun, or lately I’ve been doing a simple twisty updo thing with my hair that looks so elegant but is really, really easy.
I use RMS Lip-to-Cheek in Smile on my cheeks, and RMS “Un” Cover Up under my eyes and on any spots or pimples I have. I’ll either do a subtle winged eyeliner with Jane Iredale’s liquid eyeliner, or smear together some RMS blush and RMS Living Luminizer and put that on my eyelids—I love how this looks, and sometimes I don’t even put on mascara because I feel like it gives me that cool redheaded Scottish-gal-chic thing. Otherwise, I use Couleur Caramel mascara (the brush! The brush! It’s all about the brush. I used to be a Diorshow gal, obviously) on my top lashes.
No perfume, though sometimes I’ll dab some vetiver and rose oil on. I use homemade deodorant that has rose and vetiver in it, so sometimes that’s enough—I’m very sensitive to smells (especially post-nasty chemicals). The deodorant is equal parts arrowroot powder or corn starch and baking soda and enough shea butter to make the whole thing the texture of frosting. I add in vetiver and rose essential oils for my deodorant, and orange, lavender, and rosemary essential oils for my boyfriend’s mixture. I made the mistake this morning of putting it on after shaving; itchy all day.
Et voilà! On to coffee.
Image of Anna’s favorite star (“mainly because she married Paul Newman”) via
That’s one way to put it, right? Rage? I guess once Robert Pattinson is doing something it’s fair to say it’s reached a kind of critical mass, but that doesn’t mean the no-shampoo trend has been getting any love from women’s magazines, the pages of which are usually filled with ads for and articles about, well, shampoo. I should say upfront that I do wash my hair still. I wash it all the time. But regular readers will know Alexandra doesn’t, and we’re both advocates of less is more beauty in any form it takes—which is why I was delighted when I was flipping through the new W the other night before bed and came across a story called…The Great Unwashed! Never mind that that’s the same headline the New York Times used for their story on the same(ish) topic—this two-page featurette by Christa D’Souza was absolutely charming and chronicled her funny six-week adventure with dirty hair.
Alexandra and I have noticed—and we’re generalizing here—that when most magazines tackle naturals, one of two things happens:
1) They hawk greenwashed products that have leaves on the bottle or something, and then mix those in with truly natural or organic lines, which confuses readers; or
2) They take a snide this-stuff-is-for-hippies-and-conspiracy-theorists-only approach. We are neither (OK maybe we’re hippies), and so we don’t love this.
But this piece didn’t fall into those traps. Let’s take a look:
The theory is this: Shampoo strips hair of sebum, the oily substance secreted by our scalps to ward off bacteria and wetness. To compensate, we produce too much of the stuff, leading to the dreaded greasy look. In an attempt to remedy that problem, we lather even more frequently, and soon our ends are dry and frizzy, necessitating the use of conditioner and other expensive and time-consuming unguents. We are all, in other words, hamsters on the chemical-products wheel, and if we want to get off we must cut out, or at least curtail, their use.
Right? Right! There’s more:
Modern shampoo as we know it was first widely available in the 1930s, and although formulations have fluctuated, its basic components remain the same: salt; a lathering agent; and surfactant, a chemical that allows oil and water molecules to mix. And, of course, there’s the added fragrance. If you like the smell of clean hair, don’t be fooled: It’s not the clean you’re smelling.
Love that she points out the cycle of overuse that some products create, the relatively new invention of shampoo, and the fragrance thing. From there she funnily describes the next six weeks of her hair life, and while she decides this most certainly isn’t for her—the piece ends with “after six long weeks, I’m back on the bottle—and it feels marvelous”—we like that she gave it a shot, and we like W for giving it a shot, too. Now here’s hoping whatever bottle she went back to was from our friends Alaffia or John Masters or Aubrey.
So what about you. Do you wash your hair?