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…
Meet Charlotte, everybody! She channels Diana Ross and has a really kick-ass routine. Check out her tips for caring for curls!
Current weather: around 15C/59F, moderately humid, mild breeze, clear skies
Hair: 3b/c (very curly), darkest brown with auburn ends caused by the sun, between shoulder and armpit length, fine but lots of it
Skin: Acne-prone if I eat things that don’t agree with me (dairy, soy, refined sugar, wheat). When it’s behaving, my skin is even toned with non-visible pores. I get dull skin if I don’t keep hydrated by drinking water and taking my daily supplements (flaxseed, cod liver oil, MSM). I love that my skin is still very young and fresh looking with no wrinkles and that it has a natural “glow” about it. The only thing that bothers me about my skin is my acne and that’s only because it really affects my confidence. I don’t cover blemishes with make up because I think it makes everything look worse so I just suffer through it.
In the shower…
I wash with water only. If my armpits are particularly stinky, I use some Bee-mine rhassoul clay shampoo bar on them. Occasionally I use a body brush/exfoliating gloves. I use Darcy’s Botanicals coconut shampoo bar to wash my hair once a week and only comb my hair out in the shower when it’s wet. I don’t use a conditioner – my hair gets over-moisturized extremely easily and when that happens I get a lot of breakage and split ends.
Outside the shower…
I wash my face with a soft flannel and cold water. After that I tone with rose water and a cotton pad, spray my face again with rose water to make it damp and apply 3 drops of jojoba oil with a smidge of neem oil (it’s very stinky) as my moisturizer/hydrator. I apply Soapwalla deodorant to my armpits. I also apply crown pride ceramide protein hair treatment (I leave it in all week; my hair loves protein much more than moisture) and then towel-dry my hair with my Curls Like Us Curl Cloth (makes my hair very coily and nice). I don’t really moisturize my body. I find that because I don’t use soap, my skin never dries out anymore. On the very rare occasions I feel like I need a bit of moisturizer, I use a bit of babassu oil (its a hard oil like coconut oil and quite rich) or some shea butter.
For make up, I use Honeybee Gardens mascara in black, Afterglow concealer in toffee or RMS Beauty un-cover up in 33, Alima Pure eyeliner powder in espresso on my eyebrows, Inika eyeliner pencil in black on the inside of my upper eyelashes, W3ll People universalist highlighter on the inner corners of my eyes and usually a little bit of Alima Pure freja blush or Alima Pure trinidad bronzer. Sometimes a bit of OCC lip tar in clear or nsfw, mac lipstick in russian red or girl about town, or nars lipstick in cruella. Lipsticks are the only “dirty” product i still use :(
No fragrance as I’m struggling to find anything I like thats also ‘clean’!
Thanks, Charlotte! Anyone have some new fragrance tips? You know we are big Lotus Wei fans ’round these parts. But there are more out there, too!
P.S. I couldn’t resist…..
Guys, meet Lili from Lima. She’s the latest in our reader series of Morning Routines…Exposed! We’ll keep these going forever, basically (and if you still want to send us yours, be our guest). What we love about her routine are the products we’ve never heard of and the amazing advice she shares at the very end. Also, she blots her hair! Read on and share your thoughts in the comments.
Current weather: Transitioning into spring but still enjoying the last few days of summer in Lima, Peru: cloudy and fresh mornings, hot noons with clear skies and a strong sun, and cool evenings with a soft ocean breeze.
Hair: A little over shoulder-length. Dark brown, fine, normal, and straight.
Skin: Moderately fair, sensitive, oily T-zone, and with light post-acne marks mainly on my lower cheeks and under the chin. My face still breaks out mildly, especially before going through those painful monthly phases, in-between seasons, or when I’m feeling really stressed. In short, a very reactive skin! In spite of this, my face has cleared up considerably ever since I began using only natural, organic skincare and make-up products about 4 years ago.
In the shower…
I shower in the morning so that I can air-dry my hair. I never blow-dry or rub a towel over my wet hair; I just blot—I truly believe this habit has helped maintain my hair in such good conditions. I use Urtekram’s Organic Lavender Shampoo and once every week use Pukka Herbs’ Bhringaraj Oil as a pre-shampoo hair treatment. The oil doesn’t smell great but it is very nourishing and a great alternative for those who don’t like to use conditioners. Moreover, the weekly treatment saves you tons of money on conditioners alone! As for my body, I use Pangea Organics’ Canadian Pine & Sage bar soap with Hydrea’s Wool Sponge for mild exfoliation. If I’m traveling, which is often, I always bring along Dr. Bronner’s Lavender Liquid Soap as an all-over body and hair wash.
Outside the shower…
I don’t wash my face with gel/cream cleansers—had no special reason for this until I read somewhere that tap water actually dries out your skin because of the chlorine! Instead, I first cleanse my face with Spiezia’s Facial Cleanser and then wipe out the excess with Sprout Wellness Facial Toner using organic cotton rounds. Next, I spritz my face with Pukka Herb’s Organic Rosewater and follow it immediately with Vive Sana’s Solar to Polar Ultra SPF 40. The sun in Lima is very strong and so far, Vive Sana has been the best natural sunscreen I’ve ever used. I still get a little tanned but do not burn anymore and that says a lot about this sunscreen’s performance! I burn quite easily and in extreme cases, I sometimes even get itchy & painful rashes.
At night, I follow the same facial cleansing routine and then spread on some Dr. Alkaitis Night Cream. I then finish up with a little dab of Grateful Body’s Essential Eye Creme under both eyes. To keep my skin clear, I use Dr. Alkaitis’ Enzyme Mask once every 2 weeks. In between, I resort to DIY masks made of 1 tbsp greek yogurt + 1 tbsp raw honey mixed together in a small bowl, or just a thin layer of egg white to tighten my pores every now and then.
And last but not least, I moisturize my body either with Acure Organics’ Lavender & Lotus Flower Body Lotion or just plain organic coconut oil from Nutiva to give it a nice sheen at the beach.
I feel pretty lucky to have been blessed with nice hair hence I never use any styling products :) As for make-up, I’m quite low maintenance as well. My daily make-up routine consists of a little blush with RMS Lip2Cheek in Modern, just a swipe of Jane Iredale’s Brow Gel in Brunette, and Alima Pure’s Lip Conditioner in Natural. I don’t even use concealer for my acne marks since I always feel like the more you try to conceal them, the more visible you make them to others.
For nights out, I take some extra time to line the upper part of my eyes with Nvey Eco’s Cake Eyeliner in Black. My only natural make-up faux pas would be the mascara (surprise, surprise!!). I have oily eyelids and to avoid the endless impulsiveness to look at myself in the mirror literally every 1 or 2 minutes to see if I’ve got raccoon eyes, I just decided to be a little nicer to my vain self rather than the environment and use Blinc Mascara in Black. I’ve tried many natural mascaras (100% Pure, Couleur Caramel, Physician’s Formula, etc) without much success and quite honestly, I’ve given up betting on them. I guess the upside to this (no, it’s actually another excuse to not feel guilty) is that I only use mascara for special events.
And finally, I never go out without putting some Soapwalla deodorant and a dab of Intelligent Nutrients’ Jasminas perfume on the lower back side of my ears.
On a very separate note, I just wanted to share with all of you a piece of wisdom my mother once told me in my most difficult times.
She said that life is like a mirror, a reflection of how you feel inside: If you laugh, life will smile back but if you frown, life will be hard and miserable (ever wonder why a string of bad moments always follow a first because your mood just keeps getting worse?). It’s nothing extraordinary and of course, it is much easier said than done, but I’ve noticed that it does help me stay positive in challenging times, albeit with much effort.
So begin every morning with a big smile and lots of positive attitude!
Lili, we love you.
Elle Magazine has named five newish beautry trends that they believe are here to stay, or in their words:
“Looks that hadn’t been invented—or weren’t possible—25 years ago are now part of today’s beauty lexicon”
I love this idea! But more than that I love the challenge of finding ways to do these looks without breaking the bank or busting out the chemicals. So here are my clean-girl takes on these new modern classics.
Beachy Hair: Easy. This is basically the Summer Hair Challenge. The best way to achieve this look is not by crunching your hair with some chemy spray, but by using a natural shampoo and conditioner (or no shampoo at all) and letter your hair air dry. Not always the easiest thing to pull off in the winter, to be sure, but I guess that’s why they call it Beach Hair.
The Stained Lip: Beets, beets, beets. If you want to be an extra clean girl, revisit the book and discover that beets are nature’s answer to Benetint. A little juice from a beet (rubbed right off a sliver) makes a great lip and cheek tint, and you can control the intensity with the amount.
Flatironed Hair: Did you notice they didn’t mention the Brazilian Blowout here? We did! Flatironed hair is always a good look, one that’s easier to achieve when you don’t use sulfates on your hair and can work with your natural oils (a little argan doesn’t hurt either). We love to maintain straight hair with natural dry shampoos.
Which of these looks do you do like to do?