Ladies and gents, here’s…a gent’s routine! Boy M. kicked things off for us a few weeks ago, and now we are thrilled to have Andrew.
His favorite star is Steve McQueen [So hunky, but do you know how hard it is to find a picture of him without a cigarette in hand? Maybe it was all herbal tea he was smoking?] Read on, XX an XYs all!
Current Weather: Gotten warmer- living in NYC
Skin: Normal-Combination. Battled acne in my teens. Main concerns are healing acne scars and controlling oil production.
In the shower…
I wash my hair once a week with Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose that my friend introduced me to, because I read an interview with Orlando Pita who says he pretty much never washes his hair and that the oils are good for you. I was reluctant to use Aubrey at first because to be honest, it sounded too feminine but the results were great. I used to be a swimmer so I would wash every day to get the chlorine smell out, but I’ve found that washing once a week has made my hair softer and healthier. I use REN’s Rosa Centifolia Cleanser because it is very good at cleansing without stripping my skin. It is also very light in scent which I like. I use Pangea Organic’s body wash in the Italian White Sage, Geranium, and Yarrow scent—it’s natural without smelling too “natural,” if you know what I mean.
Outside the shower...
I use Aesop’s Parsley Seed Antioxidant Toner. I really like that it is anti-inflammatory for my acne prone skin. I’ve been curious about facial oils for a while but they always felt too heavy for my skin, I tried out Skin Fuel by Yuli* at SXSW which is made for younger, oilier skin and I really liked it so I bought a full size bottle. The serum smells like honey and jasmine and hasn’t caused me to breakout which I’m still a little surprised about since my skin loves to break out. I follow this up with Jack Black’s Sun Guard Very Water Resistant Sunscreen SPF45—I looked everywhere for a clean sunscreen but the cleanest ones tend to be heavy or leave a white residue, Jack Black’s absorbs quickly and filters out a lot of the bad stuff like parabans, petrochemicals, etc. I also like that it has Vitamin A and C in there for my skin so it protects and improves my skin. [Ed.: Active ingredient is zinc oxide. But check the full ingredient list on that site and see if it works for you.]
I use the Dior Homme Sport deodorant, which isn’t the cleanest choice, but I love the way it smells, I prefer it to the cologne. Also, there is no aluminum in there which was my main concern. I use Argan Oil from Whole Foods for my hair which tends to be dry from years of daily wash and swimming in chlorinated water.
Thanks, Andrew! Any other swimmers or ex-swimmers out there who have thoughts on how to naturally heal over-chlorinated hair?
*Check the comments in this post for readers’ info about Yuli Skincare
Welcome to a new occasional series where we’ll share with you what products real people are using in their real lives at a given moment in time. (Routines are subject to change without notice! Heh.)
I’m going to go first ’cause I’m a trooper, but there will be more! And bear in mind, I think of cosmetics sort of like an outfit: I wear underwear (almost) every day, but on top on that, sometimes I feel like wearing a sundress, and other days I feel like wearing jeans and a T. I treat skincare the same way. There are a few everyday items, and then there are some I swap in and out depending on my mood or the mood of my skin.
Now, without further ado… Here’s my morning skin and haircare routine.
Age: How dare you! (32)
Current weather: Really hot, muggy, humid, northeast, generally gross
Hair: Mostly not dyed anymore, thick, wavy, long, occasionally frizzy
Skin: Pale, sensitive, Irish, burns easily, irritated easily
In the shower…
I don’t wash my face in the morning. I figure it can’t get that dirty between washing it right before bed and waking, and my skin seems to best tolerate a light hand, so I keep it simple. Instead of wash, I use a muslin cloth I got from Pai to wipe down my face. It’s gentle but still slightly scrubby, which feels great. In the tub, I use bar soap from Leap Organics, C Tonics Tantra shampoo, and C Tonics Milk conditioner. The soap is simple, and it’s from a brand I really love to support, but the hair stuff needs some ’splaining: This shampoo smells super intense, which Spirit Demerson warned me about, but it’s a treatment for “stressed scalps,” which mine certainly is right now, mainly because I got a trim the other week and with it, a really sweet rash. The rash comes and goes with stress, but there is no more extravagant a trigger than SLS/SLES-based shampoo. The conditioner, meanwhile, is the best-smelling conditioner I’ve tried in eons. It smells amazing! And it leaves my hair soft and shiny and not frizzy, even in August in New York.
Outside the shower…
I am using and loving Soapwalla’s body oil some days of the week (too lazy to moisturize daily) and depending on how many bruises I have, I also use Chocolate Sun self-tanner in light on my legs, and maybe my arms. I apply the fake-sunner before the oil, obviously. Then I apply Soapwalla deodorant.
For face, I spray Kahina Giving Beauty Toning Mist all over, then on the lower part of my face only—which is where I’m prone to spots—I use Organic Apoteke Active Face Gel, which I live and die by. [Now here's a problem: My bottle is half-empty and the line seems to be on hiatus or out of business. HELP!!!! I am freaking out on the inside about this. I have used this for three years, and I'm terrified about what is going to happen when I run out, so suggestions welcome.]
On the rest of my face, I use Tammy Fender Intensive Repair Balm. I’m not really repairing anything, but I freaking love this cream. A tiny amount goes such a long way, and it gives my skin a nice glow. If my skin feels really hydrated already, I use the much lighter Pai Chamomile and Rosehip Lotion. Then I roll on a Bella Figura eye treatment, which I am still experimenting with but will review soon, and finally, my 100% Pure Argan Oil Sunscreen follows.
I do not use leave-ins on my hair. I dry it with a sweet blowdryer if I have time, or let it go naturally wavy.
I still love Laura Mercier’s loose minerals and use it, applied with a clean finger, on places where I need it. I managed to find a color that matches my skin perfectly, so I can use it like a spot cover for the places that are a little uneven (nostrils, sometimes my undereyes, any spots I might have). Then I curl my lashes and apply some 100% Pure mascara in navy or black, really just depending on which one is closer to the top of my makeup bag. That’s basically it. If I’m feeling fancy, I might sweep on some NVey Eco or Josie Maran eyeliner on the corner of my eyes, and sometimes some lip color, too—usually Vapour or RMS these days, in pinky colors. And finally, a spritz of Honore des Pres perfume in Vamp, which I will also review soon.
And that’s it! We’ll do night routines too, but separately, since those are usually different from mornings.
So we ask you:
What on earth should I do when Organic Apoteke runs out? And second, whose routine (other than Alexandra’s, who I will strongarm into doing this, too) do you want to know about? We can’t promise anything, but we can try! If you’re a reader and you have a routine you want to share, please let us know in the comments.
So I wanted to share a funny-but-not-so-funny story with you guys. This past Saturday I went on a hike with some friends in the San Gabriel Mountains, about an hour outside of Los Angeles. The hike was incredible, taking place mostly along a beautiful rushing river which we had to cross back and forth over—I mean in—about 100 times, making for happy hearts but heavy hiking boots.
Anyways, the sun was blazing and, because of said river crossings and a generally unpredictable terrain, what we thought was going to be a four hour hike actually turned into eight hours. Not a problem except that this girl (yours truly), being not always the smartest when it comes to sun protection, did not have any sunscreen with her. She had a hat though.
Around hour five I realized that what I could still barely call a tan on my arms was about twenty minutes from a painful red burn, and so I swallowed my pride and asked to share in the bottles of spray-on sunscreen being passed around. I’m talking about the dirtiest, most chemy stuff on the market—so much so they probably still use CFCs in their aerosol cans.
What a trip to spray this crap on my skin, though. While a few years ago I wouldn’t have given it a second blink, it felt so counterintuitive in that moment. First off, it smelled chokingly of hairspray. Secondly, when it hit a tiny little scrape I had it actually made me yelp in pain—it killed, like insta-eyes-welling-with-tears type of sting. Which then made me laugh because it hit me how I used to take that sort of thing as par for the coarse. You know, don’t get that product near your open skin because it’s toxic and will burn the dickens out of you but let’s just not think about the fact that it’s seeping into our pores!
The stuff I use these days would actually help heal the cut and protect me from the sun. I love those kind of marker moments when you realize just how much your paradigm has shifted for the better. Had any lately?
Happy memorial day, les amies! What are you going to get up to? (See above for my plans.) As you prepare for a weekend of frisbee and barbecue, may we remind you, as always, that sunscreen is a good idea for all outdoor activity, and that chemical sunscreen is the devil and should be avoided at all costs, no exceptions? And if you don’t believe us, you can ask Gisele.
If you are new to this stuff, or need a refresher, please revisit our piece called “How Safe Is Sunscreen?” which took the nets by storm last summer (just kidding, but it was a hit!). And…
If you aren’t compelled to avoid chemical sunscreens for your own health and the health of your children—whether they’re born or still in the ideas stage—then do it for the planet: Coral reefs, which are home to countless species of aquatic life and are a crucial piece of ocean biodiversity puzzle, are imperiled by the chemicals in sunscreen, which wash off our bodies when we play in the water, and down the drain when we shower. No, you can’t see the damage happening, but trust us: It is.
Back to the topic at hand: A while ago we asked you if you wear sunscreen every day, and the comments (which are still coming in!) were amazing. We also told you about some screens we love for face, and now the EWG has released its annual guide to their top sunscreens in terms of their low toxicity and effectiveness as a broad spectrum sunscreen. What they don’t cover—and bless their hearts, they can’t do it all!—is how cosmetically desirable these products are, so that’s why we’re counting on you guys. Since we’re just two people, we can’t try them all, either!
You can find the complete EWG list here, and remember the list is alphabetical, not in order of their preference. We recommend mineral sunscreens, and advise against non-mineral ones.
Let us know which ones you’ve tried, and what you think about them, in the comments!
Finding any excuse to run a picture of Brigitte, via
Sad we didn’t do a deal last Friday? Well, we’re making it up to you with a brand new partner and a really killer one today. Let’s meet Futurenatural, shall we? We love the look and feel of this site, and we dig the attitude too: “We’re not anti-science, we’re not blindly for nature, and we don’t profess to be perfect.” While the store carries many of our favorite staples—Kahina, RMS, Intelligent Nutrients, John Masters and so on—they also have some brands that we haven’t seen anywhere else. And this week’s deal will introduce you to something awesome!
Before we get to that, just one more thing: Futurenatural sells Scotch Naturals, our new favorite nail polish line. If you’re looking for an exciting color for the spring or summer, we HIGHLY recommend you throw one of these into your basket. Okay, that’s it! Onto the good stuff…
Here’s the deal: We’ve been on a face sunscreen kick lately, so with any order over $25 Futurenatural is offering you a free brand-new face sunscreen by ECO (Logical) (from the people who brought you Soleo Organic Sunscreen which—spoiler alert!—is one of our favorites). UPDATE: APPARENTLY THEY ARE NOT AFFILIATED WITH SOLEO–OUR BAD! SOLEO IS STILL ALIVE AND WELL AS A BRAND. This puppy — ECO Logical All Natural Sunscreen Lotion, FACE (SPF 30) — is water-based, is not oily (for those of you who don’t like the slickness of some other screens), absorbs amazingly with no white cast, and wears like a dream under makeup.
Simply enter the promo code ECO checkout to get your freebie.
Recap: Spend $25, get a FULL SIZE free face sunscreen. Boom!
Note: The free product will ship automatically with anyone using the code even though it won’t show up during checkout.
Here’s the complete and awesome ingredient list:
Active Ingredients: zinc oxide 20%
Inactive ingredients: Purified water, Isoamyl laurate, capric/caprylic triglyceride, sorbitan stearate, sucrose cocoate, caprylyl glycol, cetearyl alcohol, cetearyl glucoside, hydroxypropyl starch phosphate, polyhydroxy stearic acid, xanthan gum, cucumis sativa (cucumber) seed extract, rosa canina (rosehip) seed oil, camellia sinesis (green tea) extract.
Happy trails, and have a great (and hopefully sunny) weekend!
P.S. Futurenatural ships to Canada for a flat rate of $20 up to five pounds.