Oils and orange blossom, abhjenga, Stark, RMS and Pai? Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens! Sallie’s morning routine features more than a few of our favorite things.
Current Weather: I live on the Texas Gulf Coast where it is always ALWAYS humid. Growing up on the east coast, I thought I knew what humidity was… but… I didn’t. That being said we’ve been experiencing some fine late autumn days – usually sunny and in the mid to high 80’s.
Hair: Light brown with some natural blonde highlights from the sun, fine but there’s a lot of it, wavy and chin length.
Skin: Golden/olive-y. Tans easily, burns rarely. Oily – especially during the intense summers. I’ve been experiencing some hormonal acne since getting off the pill about a year ago, which had me feeling pretty crappy for awhile. Within the past few months or so it finally seems to be normalizing, although stress is still a huge trigger for me.
Favorite Star: Angelica Huston
In the shower…
First thing I do in the morning (after feeding the cat) is to drink a big tall glass of water with lemon and a few drops of vitex elixer I picked up from Whole Foods. This is supposed to help support female hormones. I only just started adding this to my morning water and I can’t say its been a miracle cure or anything – but I also haven’t noticed anything terrible, so I’m just going to go with it, even if it’s a little placebo! Then I head to the bathroom. I have two routines, one long and one short. The short one is not so interesting (just a little splish splash of cold water on my face, some sunscreen and deodorant or a bit of a soap-up at the sink if I “need” it – meaning if I stink…) So I’ll go with the long one: After reading about Alexandra’s morning abhyanga ritual I’ve been incorporating this into my mornings too, and I’ve seen outstanding results! Softer, clearer skin all over, and an improved mental state (possibly some balanced hormones – but the jury is still out on that one.) First I dry brush my skin in the shower for a couple of minutes, then I do a full body massage with coconut oil, head to toe (I like to spend a long time on this part.) This makes my skin incredibly soft, clear and “glowy”, very important if you live in a beach town. Since I don’t love straight coconut oil on my face I use Stark’s Grapefruit Cleansing Balm, which is lovely and amazing. Then I sit for awhile and breathe and try to relax. After that I jump in the shower and wash my hair with John Master’s lavender and rosemary shampoo or the Ctonics for oily hair. I find that when I rub my scalp and hair with coconut oil I don’t really need to condition it after I wash it (and it leaves it incredibly soft and shiny – seriously ah-mazing!) Then I wash my pits and bits with some Dr. Bronner’s Unscented.
Outside the shower…
I dry off and wrap my hair in a towel. I use a Pai Muslin cloth and hot water to remove the Stark Grapefruit Balm on my face. I like to lay the cloth over my face to get a little steam action and then gently exfoliate. I try not to do too much manual exfoliation since I usually have a break out or two. I’ve relied pretty heavily on chemical exfoliators like Tata Harper’s mask and sometimes just straight lemon juice – which I do at night. But since my skin has been pretty clear (dare I say “radiant”??) a gentle manual scrub with the Pai cloth is something that I’ve been incorporating more. I’ve learned to be very gentle with my skin, not over-cleansing it, or picking at it, and it makes a huge difference. After I remove all the oil from my face I give myself a big smile! Really! My body skin doesn’t get moisturized because its still got some coconutty goodness on it and my hair just gets combed and then air dryed. I brush my teeth with Tom’s and use Tom’s unscented deodorant. I really like Soapwalla, but Tom’s is readily available to me at the grocery store. Depending on how my skin feels I might give myself a little spritz of Stark’s White Willow Bark tonic and a quick slap slap slap with the Stark Cypress oil… or I just skip right to the John Master’s sunscreen which I wear everyday, rain or shine, indoors or out. I actually think wearing a sunscreen with zinc in it has helped clear my skin – and it definitely helps prevent the dark marks a zit can leave behind.
I used to be really into makeup but that love has faded over time. If I’m just going to be home I usually don’t wear any, but on workdays I usually do a little spot concealing with RMS uncoverup (this doesn’t really offer much coverage for any hyperpigmented areas, like the occasional lingering acne scar – so I think I might try something else in the future) and a little dab of RMS Lip2Cheek in smile (smile!) and my one dirty product that I don’t know if I’ll ever change (sorry!) L’oreal Voluminous mascara in black – it’s my favorite! If I’m feeling glamorous or I have an event to attend I’ll wear some eyeliner, eyeshadow or lately its been a dark plummy lipstick, but those are all dirty products from either MAC or NARS that I have yet to part with. I’m not much for perfume, but sometimes if I want to smell a little special I douse my neck, arms and decolletage with Santa Maria Novella orange blossom water. And that’s it!! Thanks Siobhan and Alexandra!
No, thank you Sallie! This is a truly delicious morning routine.
After un petit hiatus, we have a Friday Deal to make up for lost time. Not only are the superstars at NuboNau offering a killer offer on PAI, a brand we lovelovelove. They are also telling NMDL readers first about their big End of Summer Sale—which means you guys get first dibs.
Here’s what’s shaking: Order $40 worth of PAI products and get their cleanser—in it’s new 50ml travel size, valued at $24—for FREE with your purchase. As per, use the NMDL code, automatically collect loyalty points to put towards future purchases, AND get a luxey little sample set of goodies.
You’ll also receive a full 50% off any of their summer sale items. So, it’s double trouble.
The PAI deal will run until next Friday, or while supplies last (so don’t tarry!) Here’s what we love: All of their moisturizers, their muslin cloth, their face oil, and their cleanser. They basically have perfect track record with us—we just haven’t tried quite everything yet—so we’ll be hopping on this deal too.
In other news, it’s the weekend! Have a great one. xx
Everybody, meet Greta, who may have created the word “glowifying” and definitely personifies it! Must be all the exfoliating and John Masters-ing she does. Read and enjoy (keep you eyes peeled for her tip for stopping scars before they start)!
Current weather: Coastal Northern California, so cool, foggy and breezy. Essentially jacket weather 24/7.
Hair: Dark blackish-brown, natural color (not dyed), thick, wavy, and slightly coarse. Boob-length (aka halfway between my armpit and elbow)
Skin: Pale, reddish, very sensitive and prone to sunburn. No acne but prone to roughness and bumpiness.
In the shower…
Pre-shower, I massage a generous blob of Burt’s Bees Avocado Butter Pre-Shampoo Hair Treatment (NB: contains fragrance) from the middle to the ends of my hair. This is my very favorite for softening my coarse and unruly hair—even better than the various oils I’ve tried. Then I wipe my face with a Seventh Generation baby wipe in preparation for slathering my face and neck with Fage 2% Greek Yogurt. The lactic acid in the yogurt is a great gentle exfoliant and I find this to be very smoothing and glowifying with no irritation. I leave it on until the yogurt is nearly dry—about 10-15 minutes. While I wait, I’ll putz around in the bathroom, occasionally dry brushing with a Hydrea London Body Brush or massaging a dropperful of John Masters Organics Pomegranate Facial Nourishing Oil into my nails and scalp. Once in the shower, I apply John Masters Zinc & Sage Shampoo with Conditioner followed by John Masters Organics Lavender & Avocado Intensive Conditioner. They both smell incredible and keep my pouffy waves in check. I’ve tried other lines but always come running back to John Masters for haircare. I can definitely see a difference in my smoother, healthier locks. I soap up my Hydrea London Carbonized Bamboo Exfoliating Gloves with whatever soap we have on hand. I’m always switching kinds. Right now I’m using Big Sur Country Soap, which is made locally and I picked up at the farmer’s market. I shave my pits, legs and bits with a Gillette Fusion razor, and I’m done!
Outside the shower…
I wash my face with Pai Camellia and Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser, and if it’s nighttime, I use my Clarisonic Mia with it. I follow with a couple spritzes of Pai BioAffinity Tonic in Lotus & Orange Blossom. Daytime, I smooth on Pai Chamomile & Rosehip Moisturizer or Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Cream Light. Nighttime, I massage in John Masters Organics Pomegranate Facial Nourishing Oil or Pai BioRegenerate Oil. Any extra oil goes on the ends of my hair. Obviously, I adore Pai—my sensitive skin responds beautifully to their gentle yet effective products. I recommend them to all my friends! My body gets a slather of Pai Comfrey and Calendula Calming Body Cream, and my abdominal incision from last month’s surgery gets a mini-massage with Jason 45,000 IU Vitamin E Oil. Floss and then brush my teeth with my Preserve toothbrush and The Natural Dentist Antigingivitis toothpaste and mouthwash.
I wear makeup maybe a handful of days per month, and when I do it’s Dr. Hauschka mascara in Black and Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose.
Soap & Paper Factory’s Bois de Cedrat Hand Cream is my favorite scent. I dab some on my neck and wrists like perfume. I’ve been stingy about using it as I don’t believe they make this fragrance anymore [Ed's note: they don't] and I want my tube to last!
John Masters and Pai: Hire this gal as your spokeswoman! The rest of you: What think you?
Image of Vivien Leigh via
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
Dearest Friday, we are so happy that you’re finally here. In celebration of your arrival, our good pals at NuboNau are offering a special double dealski. As you guys know, we deeply heart PAI and they recently sent over their new gentle exfoliator for us to check out. Alexandra has yet to try it—because she’s having a weekly affair with her Mia brush right now—but Siobhan has officially added it to her favorite cleanser list. (Alexandra is planning to put down the Mia to try it soon.) Anyhoo….
Deal numero uno: Order the PAI Exfoliator with the PAI Facial Oil (also yummy!) and you’ll get both for $50 (instead of $70). That’s a 30% discount AND you also get FREE SHIPPING. Just use promocode NMDL1 once you’ve added both (and any other) products to your basket.
Deal numero dos: Place any order on anything, spend more than $25 and get FREE SHIPPING on that too. For this one (if you’re not ordering the PAI) use promocode NMDL2 once you’ve added the products to your basket. Claro?
Dont forget to tell your friends: Have you tried PAI? What other lines do you like from this store?
Other stuff you should know:
- If you have any issues redeeming your offer, you can call their Customer Care number Toll Free: 1 877 NuboNau (682 6628).
- Free shipping applies to the USA only.
- You will receive Loyalty Points for all your purchases.
- Deal is valid for one week (until Thursday March 15th 2012 12:00PM PST).
- They are happy to take order over the Phone: 1 877 NuboNau
- Deals cannot be used or combined with any other offers.
Have a sparkly weekend!