• bath products,  Beauty,  Christmas,  cruelty-free,  eye makeup,  face care,  gifts,  green,  holidays,  Julep,  lip color,  nail polish,  Zoya

    Christmas 2018 cruelty-free beauty gift guide

    I promised a cruelty-free beauty gift guide, and here it is…my favorite beauty gift sets for Christmas 2018! I’ve sorted this gift guide into four categories: stocking stuffers, save ($10+), spend ($20+), and splurge ($30-$50). There’s a good mix of skin care, color cosmetics, and more. And most importantly: everything is easy to order online from Ulta or Sephora (the two major beauty retailers here in the U.S.), with the exception of the Essence and Julep boxes in the “splurge” section, which can be ordered through those brands’ websites. In other words, you won’t need to jump through multiple checkouts or even change out of your pajamas to order enough gifts to cover everyone on your list.

    Scroll through to see all my picks, and click on any of the pictures to view them full screen. Elbow-deep in Christmas shopping? You might also want to check out my bookish gift guide, gifts for guys under $50, cozy gifts for almost anyone, and last-minute gifts you can shop online or at the drugstore!

  • bath products,  Beauty,  gifts,  holidays

    Ten drugstore beauty gifts for Mother’s Day (under $10!)

    One of my favorite things to do for a gift is fill up a bag or basket with pampering beauty goodies like face masques, bath salts, and other treats. This is a great idea for Mother’s Day and since everything I’ve picked out is available at drugstores or mass retailers like Target, this is a great last-minute gift idea as well. Take a look at these ten drugstore beauty gifts for Mother’s Day (under $10!) and tell me: what’s your favorite pampering product?

    Check out these ten drugstore beauty gifts for Mother's Day (under $10!) and fill up a pampering basket for mom!

     

    Dr. Teal’s Epsom bath salt, $5.99; Acure Lemongrass body lotion, $9.99; 7th Heaven chocolate mud masque, $1.50; Pacifica Tuscan Blood Orange mini body butter, $6; Flower Beauty Cherished roll-on perfume, $9.97; Milani nail lacquer in Corrupted Coral, $3.99; Tree Hut Italian Mocha sugar scrub, $6.48; Organix Moroccan Argan Creme shampoo and conditioner, $5.79 each.

    (If you really want to make mom’s day, I suggest pairing some of these treats with a pint of the new vegan Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Have you tried it? I love the coffee caramel fudge flavor!)

  • bath products,  Beauty,  body products,  product review

    Product review: Perlier Volcanic Thermal Scrub

    Disclosure: I received this product courtesy of iFabbo and Perlier for testing purposes. However I was note compensated for writing this review and as always all opinions are my own.

    Product: Perlier Volcanic Thermal Scrub, $25 for 6.7 ounces. This product is sold through HSN (here).

    Ingredients: AQUA (WATER), GLYCERIN, POLYETHYLENE, SODIUM POLYACRYLATE, PUMICE, SILICA, OLIVINE EXTRACT, PARFUM (FRAGRANCE), IMIDAZOLIDINYL UREA, METHYLCHLOROISOTHIAZOLINONE, METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE, BUTYLPHENYL METHYLPROPIONAL, HYDROXYISOHEXYL 3-CYCLOHEXENE CARBOXALDEHYDE, LINALOOL, HEXYL CINNAMAL, CI 42090 (BLUE 1). 

    Ingredient notes: This product appears to be animal-friendly at a glance; however, note that the imidazolidinyl urea can be animal-derived, and it isn’t clear whether this particular product uses an animal-sourced or synthetic version. Also, ingredients like fragrance, linalool and dye can be irritating to the skin.  

    I tried it: Or perhaps more accurately, I wanted to try it. I love scrubs and while I had some reservations about the strange, thick blue goo in the jar, I was really hoping for a good exfoliating experience. The suspension of this product is really weird–it’s like hair gel with pumice bits inside, if that makes sense. The gritty bits are of varying sizes and are supposed to provide a superior smoothing experience while also working with the thermal water to renew the skin.

    But my testing attempts were firmly squashed by how harsh this scrub felt on my skin. To be fair, my skin tends to be sensitive and picky about what it will and won’t tolerate, but this felt way too harsh for my body. The scrub promises to leave skin “soft and velvety”, but I just stepped out of the shower feeling like I’d taken a sheet of sandpaper to my body. Way, way too harsh.

    The other problem was that this scrub really irritated my skin. After I tried to use it, I ended up red and itchy, either from over-dryness or an irritating ingredient in the scrub.

    I also have to mention that I have no way of knowing whether Perlier used synthetic alternatives to animal-derived ingredients in their products (they do say that they don’t test their products on animals). As I’ve mentioned off and on in my blog posts, this is my year of transitioning from a vegetarian to a vegan life, so I’m slowly weeding out beauty products that contain animal ingredients like beeswax, lanolin, etc. Since I can’t be 100% certain that this product is vegan-friendly, it isn’t something I would feel comfortable purchasing for myself in the future.

    My final thoughts: I was so excited to test this, but what a letdown! I have heard from other bloggers that they loved it, so maybe it was just me? In any case, I sadly can’t recommend it.

    Disclosure: I received this product courtesy of iFabbo and Perlier for testing purposes. However I was note compensated for writing this review and as always all opinions are my own.

      

  • bath products,  Beauty,  DIY,  vegan

    DIY: Lavender-coconut moisturizing sugar scrub

    Hey lovelies! Remember last week when I highlighted Elle’s recipe for a coconut lime scrub? Well, I loved that combo so much I decided I wanted to find a recipe for a lavender scrub to use before bed. I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted, so after reading a bunch of different scrub recipes online and in my new DIY beauty book (find it here on Amazon) I just kind of winged it with this one and made up the recipe as I went! I chose to use a higher ratio of oil to sugar for a more moisturizing scrub, but you can just use less for a drier scrub.

    What you’ll need:

    –1 cup of sugar
    –3 heaping tbsp. coconut oil
    –3 tbsp. almond oil
    –1 tbsp. lavender essential oil

    In a large bowl combine the lavender essential oil and the almond oil. Add the coconut oil and blend well. Add the sugar and mix well with a fork. If the mixture still seems too dry, you can add a bit more coconut oil. Spoon into a glass jar (I use pint canning jars) and attach a label or tag for gift-giving.

    Remember that when you make something with all-natural ingredients, it’s best to use it up quickly–I would use this up within the month. And be careful when using this, as the extra coconut oil can make the shower or tub very slippery. On the upside, it leaves skin silky smooth, so much so that you almost don’t even need to use body moisturizer afterward!

    This scrub is not only easy to make–it’s vegan, all-natural, and if you do the math on the ingredients, it winds up being waaaay cheaper to make versus buying a conventional scrub at the store. Plus, if you package it up in cute jars with little tags and twine, it can make a great gift for your friends! I’ll definitely be making jars of scrub come Christmas time to give to my girlfriends.

  • bath products,  Beauty,  product review

    Product review: Bath and Body Works Rome Honeysuckle Amore shower gel and body lotion

    Amy from Small Budget Beauty asked for a review of this shower gel and body lotion, which I picked up during my birthday haul–so here it is!

    Product: Bath and Body Works Rome Honeysuckle Amore shower gel and body lotion; $11 each at Bath and Body Works stores or bathandbodyworks.com

    Claim: Take a romantic stroll through the cobblestone streets of Italy’s most glamorous city with pink honeysuckle, golden peach & cyprus woods immersed in our exclusive hydrating formula.

    Ingredients/ingredient info: There was no comprehensive ingredient info available on the website. Bath and Body Works lists their products as not tested on animals and these products do not contain any animal-derived ingredients, so they are vegan-friendly. However, you should be aware that they do contain sulfates, parabens and dyes, as well as linalool and limonene (both of which are allergens).

    I tried it: If Wild Honeysuckle is the fresh, slightly bohemian scent of spring, then Rose Honeysuckle Amore is her sassy summer cousin. Notes of peach, mandarin and berry lend a fruity twist while hints of amber and sandalwood kick it up a notch. I feel like this scent lasts a little longer than the original Wild Honeysuckle and it will probably have a wider appeal among people who find straight honeysuckle to smell a little too strong.

    I feel like this scent does a great job of capturing the romance of a trip through an exotic European city on a warm summer day. I like it even better than the original Wild Honeysuckle and I’m really hoping this doesn’t disappear to the clearance table on me!

    My final thoughts: It’s definitely amore, but it might not stick around forever–and it’s currently marked way down–so grab it while you can! You won’t regret it!