• Beauty,  product review,  what beauty companies say about animal testing

    Product review: Victoria’s Secret fragrance mist (six different scents reviewed)

    Update 2018: wow you guys! Five years on this continues to be one of the most popular posts on my site. Since a LOT has changed since 2013, I wanted to update this post with some more current information for anyone still interested in buying these mists from Victoria’s Secret!

    Victoria’s Secret still offers ten fragrance mists on their site for $18 apiece, though they’re often on sale if you buy two or three at a time. Of the six scents I reviewed, four are still available: Aqua Kiss, Amber Romance, Pure Seduction, and Vanilla Lace (now repackaged as Bare Vanilla). You can view all scents and descriptions here.

    Victoria's Secret fragrance mists

  • music,  workout

    Something different: workout music!

    I thought I would put together a slightly different post today! I try really hard to exercise a little each day, whether through something fun like dancing or hiking or a more strict “workout” routine from a DVD, magazine tear-out, etc. But I really struggle with motivation to get up and get moving. The best way for me to get moving (and stay moving) is to have a great soundtrack blasting in the background. So today I thought I would share some of my favorite new workout songs!

    Make sure you leave me a comment and tell me some of your favorite new workout tunes so I can check them out!

    Pendulum–“The Vulture”
    This is a couple of years old, but I just found it by chance on Spotify. Remember when Korn and Skrillex teamed up? This is the same sort of dynamic–metal and EDM mashed up for a fast-paced workout song that’s great for a long run.

    The Naked and Famous–“Punching In A Dream”
    This band reminds me of MGMT. I think this has a good steady beat that would be good for a bike ride.

    Gnarls Barkley–“Going On”
    Okay, not the newest track by far. But I can’t help dancing around to this one. If you’re pressed for time and/or don’t want to do a strict workout, toss on some dance music while you clean the house–it makes the cleaning go faster and you work up a sweat at the same time.


    Portugal. The Man–“Creep In A T-Shirt”
    Another danceable track. How awesome is the horn section? I won’t lie, I’ve been listening to this non-stop all week. Also, this new album was produced by Danger Mouse, so that tells you something!

    Avicii–“Wake Me Up”
    Remember “Levels”? This is a slightly different direction for the Swedish DJ–it has a bit of a country influence, if that makes any sense. This would be another good one for running or biking.

    The Hives–“Hate To Say I Told You So”
    This song is actually really old–but this would be great for a run! I want Guy Ritchie to put this in a movie. Please, please, please?

  • Uncategorized

    Random Thursday: Where do you like to go on vacation?

    To be honest…I’m kind of a homebody! I like to relax on the couch with a stack of books and something yummy to eat.

    When I do get off the couch though, I like to be out in nature. I like to hike. I love those dense old forests that make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time, and I love the mountains.

    If I have to be in an urban area, I like to wander off the beaten path to explore. You can find cool shops, eateries and other interesting places if you get away from the crowds and the tourist hotspots.

    I’ve also been to the beach in Oregon a couple of times and it’s gorgeous there! I’d love to go back.

    There are lots of other places I would like to go too, I just haven’t gotten there yet. Where do you like to go on vacation? Or what’s your fantasy vacation spot?

  • Beauty,  cruelty-free,  face care,  product review,  summer

    Product review: Acure Organics Mineral Protection Sunscreen SPF 30

    I’ve got another suncare review for you today! I’ve been looking for a new facial sunscreen for awhile and just couldn’t find one I liked. The chemical sunscreens sting my eyes like no tomorrow but I’ve just had to make do! But the more I’ve learned about the toxic makeup of these sunscreens and how they affect the body and the environment, the more eager I’ve become to find a good natural sunscreen! And where better to start than with my face?

    I decided to go check out the skincare aisle at my local health food store and with the the help of one of their awesome associates (they seriously have the nicest people there!) picked out this little tube to try out. Acure is already fast becoming one of my favorite skincare brands so I thought their sunscreen had to be worth trying!

    The product: Acure Organics Mineral Protection Sunscreen SPF 30; $15.99/1 oz. at health food stores or through their website

    The claim: Physical mineral sunscreens offer broad-spectrum sun protection while prickly pear extract fights free radicals.

    Ingredients: Titanium dioxide9%, zinc oxide 3%, aqua, caprylic/capric triglyceride, carthamus tinctorius oleosomes, isopropyl jojobate, jojoba alcohol, jojoba esters, silica, benzyl alcohol, phenoxyethanol, polyhydroxystearic acid, opuntia ficus-indica stem, glycerin, tocopheryl acetate, bisabolol, isostearic acid.

    Ingredient notes: Acure products are vegan and Leaping Bunny-certified (yay!). Paraben-free and free of harmful chemical sunscreen ingredients like oxybenzone.

    I tried it: I think it’s fantastic that Acure is vegan and natural, I love the higher SPF, and I love that they threw in some antioxidant action to help fight skin damage. Now, with all of those basics covered, I still needed to know how this sunscreen would perform “in the field” as it were, across my five main points of concern:

    • Does it leave a white cast? No! This sunscreen rubs in very well and doesn’t leave any whitish tint.
    • Is it greasy/slick? No! If anything, this sunscreen left me with a matte, velvety finish on the skin, much like a makeup primer. Surprised? I was too!
    • Does it sting or smell? Nope! The wonderful thing about mineral sunscreens is that they’re much less irritating, so no watery, burning eyes here!
    • Can it be layered with makeup? Yes! No slip and slide here.
    • Will it cause a breakout? This is a huge concern for me since I have combo-oily skin, but thankfully–no breakouts to report!

    My final thoughts: A definite winner! I do wish the tube were a little bigger but since I’m only using it on my face (I’ll use a separate sunscreen for my body), that’s okay. I don’t mind paying a little more for a nice facial sunscreen since, after all–if it isn’t nice, I won’t want to put it on my face–and if I don’t ever use it, then it does me no good!

  • blogs

    Favorite blog posts this week!

    Here’s another round of favorite blog posts for you to peruse!

    Beauty Redefined by Pang has a ton of swatches of both green and purple liners. Beauty Passionista has a review of the Boots No. 7 Hero eye cream. Green Eyed Monster has a review of the Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter cuticle cream, which I’ve been eyeballing for months.

    If you’re into using natural products, you might like this post on the many ways to use coconut oil, from We Were Raised By Wolves. Sifa’s Corner is experimenting with honey and she’s got some great tips on how this natural product can improve your skin and overall physical health. (This is great for non-vegans who still want to use very natural, healthy products but might be allergic to nut-based natural items.)

    Sugarpuffish discusses the environmental impact of sunscreen on coral reefs–something I had never before heard of–and Shoes, Sushi and Spare Change talks about the trouble with “faux” fur.

    If you want a laugh–Dabbling in Dixie wrote this hilarious post about being a single girl in the season of weddings. I just love Katie’s use of GIFs and as always she has some good ones here! Cocalores talks about the ten types of tourists from hell, which is applicable no matter where you live. (She’s from Germany, but some of these types can be found in small US tourist towns, too!)

    Finally, for bloggers who want to learn more about SEO optimization for their blogs, Rosalilium has some helpful tips that are easy to follow even if you don’t know a lot about search engines or keywords.