Juice Beauty Event & Reflecting Gloss Review

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During New York Fashion Week, I was invited to a fun event for NYC-based green beauty bloggers hosted by Juice Beauty. We gathered at a hotel rooftop to learn about Juice Beauty’s new makeup line (which launched online last week) and of course, we were able to test out all the products before they hit the shelves! Fittingly, we sipped on delicious juice concoctions from the beloved, New York City-based cold-pressed juicery, Liquiteria. Heaven!

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From left: Alden of Ecocult, me, Kristen Arnett of Green Beauty Team, Brandie of Organic Beauty Talk, Katie of Green Product Junkie, Karen Behnke the founder of Juice Beauty, Isabelle from Ginger and Aloe, Annalise from Juice Beauty

I had a great time chatting with all the other green beauty bloggers, meeting the Juice Beauty team and the brand’s founder, Karen Behnke (who was so friendly and knowledgeable) while playing around with the new makeup products. Just like their acclaimed skincare line, all the new makeup products have juice-based ingredients and are USDA certified organic. I was pleasantly surprised at the lovely pigmentation and lasting-power from the new makeup products as well as the cute packaging! I admire Juice Beauty as brand that is truly creating effective, organic products that defy and perform better than most conventional, mainstream beauty products. Learn more here.

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I received the Reflecting Gloss lip gloss in the color, Guava from the Just Juice event. Guava looks very dark in the tube and is a shimmery, deep, raspberry-red color. I was excited that I received Guava as I normally tend to choose darker lip colors. Once swiped over my lips it was a beautiful, my lips-but-better, pinkish-red. (Note: my lips are a bit pigmented than most ladies.) The shimmer was not overwhelming and produces a gorgeous, reflecting shine to the lips.

I’ve never been much of a lip gloss-loving girl but in all honesty, I love this lip gloss! It’s not sticky, lasts throughout the day, is very moisturizing and applies so smoothly. I can barely feel anything on my lips! I also like that the Reflecting Gloss leaves a nice tint of color to the lips even after a couple of hours of wear. The best part is that when applied, the Reflecting Gloss tastes as if you’ve just bitten into a juicy guava! Very fruity and slightly sweet, it smells and tastes very fresh on the lips. Not to mention the awesome, organic ingredients that make up this beauty of a gloss. The Reflecting Gloss is loaded with nourishing antioxidants including organic raspberry, goji, blueberry and acai berries while mixed with organic agave for a natural sweetness, Vitamin E to heal and repair the lips and lastly, sesame seed oil to hydrate and condition.

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I love that Karen mentioned she was inspired to use berries for the colors in these lip glosses after remembering how her daughter would eat handfuls of blueberries and after, would have a deeply-stained mouth. Karen knew she had to use that powerful, natural pigmentation in her lip products. I love wearing my Reflecting Gloss for an easy, everyday look paired neutral eyeshadow and mascara on the eyes or for evening events, with dramatic, cat-eye liner and dark eyeshadow. This gloss is also great to wear over lipstick for an overall, glam shine.

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I can’t wait to experiment some looks with Juice Beauty’s new Defining Eyeliner, Lash Defining Mascara, Conditioning Lip Color and Glowing Cheek Color! More to come…

Thanks to Juice Beauty for a fun and educational event! 🙂

Shop Juice Beauty’s new makeup line online here  or online at Ulta.com and also at an Ulta store near you! Have you used any Juice Beauty Products? What products from the new makeup line are you dying to try?

Ingredients: Ricinus communis (organic castor seed oil)*, cera alba (organic beeswax)*, sesamum indicum (organic sesame seed oil)*, vitis vinifera (organic grape seed oil)*, vaccinium corymbosum (organic blueberry seed oil)*, punica granatum (organic pomegranate seed oil)*, rubus idaeus (organic raspberry seed oil)*, actinidia chinensis (organic kiwi seed oil)*, vaccinium macrocarpon (organic cranberry seed oil)*, fragaria ananassa (organic strawberry seed oil)*, euterpe oleracea (organic acai berry)*, lycium chinense (organic goji berry)*, triisostearyl citrate, tocopherol (Vitamin E), agave americana (agave leaf extract), thymus vulgaris (thyme extract), melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree extract), rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary extract) and citrus sinensis (sweet orange oil). May contain titanium dioxide, mica, iron oxides.  *Certified organic ingredient
Made without parabens, petroleum, propylene or butylene glycol, sodium lauryl sulfates, pesticides, phthalates, artificial dyes or synthetic fragrances. Not tested on animals. See the Juice Beauty website for more info here.
*I received this product to try for free from the company but am never paid for my opinion. This review is based on my personal experience with the brand/product and is not sponsored in any way. All photos are ©Kasey Michelle unless otherwise stated.

Au Natural Factual Friday: Chia Seeds

Cha-cha-cha-Chia! I’m not going to be talking about those cute plant creatures that grow in a tabletop pot, but Chia seeds, the seeds from those plants.

Chia seeds have been all the health-food rage since it’s 2012 induction, dubbed as a super-foods supplement, chia seeds are super-nutrients that helps control hunger and enhance one’s diet. Chia seeds are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and are also considered a concentrated food as the seeds are loaded with antioxidants, carbohydrates, fiber, calcium and protein.

It’s no wonder why I couldn’t turn a corner at work without seeing ladies spilling this into their yogurts, mixing it into their drinks, or just plain munching on some seeds. And it seemed my own encounter with chia seeds was inevitable as I walked to work and health-food promoters practically threw packets of free chia seeds to me on the street. (Seriously.) 

A couple of these Chia Shots were thrown to me while walking to work…

Chia seeds are derived from a flowering plant known simply as the Chia plant (salvia hispanica) which are native to many areas in central/southern Mexico. The use of chia seeds date back to the times of the Mayans and Aztecs when chia seeds were also eaten as a staple food and believed to be an energy booster. It’s still used in Mexico today as a nutritious food source, ground or sprinkled into drinks or on food.

Not only are these super-nutritious seeds good to eat, they’re also a beneficial natural beauty ingredient. When chia seeds are cold pressed into an oil they have proven to do wonders for skin. Chia seed oil is very moisturizing and hydrating to the skin and can also calm redness due to a high level of vitamin B3, a natural anti-inflammatory. The antioxidants in the oil also help protect skin from free radical damage such as aging and UV rays. Since Chia seeds are rich in omega 3-fatty acids, as an oil, the acids aid in encouraging collagen and elastin formation, allowing skin to stay firm and supple.

Although I’m not hooked on Chia seeds in my daily diet, I think they are a beneficial health supplement. I’ve seen so many more natural/organic beauty products using Chia seeds or oil as an ingredient and I’d love to try some out in my skincare routine! Would you add chia seeds or chia oil to your beauty and health routine?

Products with Chin seed/Chia oil ingredients:

One Love Organics Skin Savior Waterless Beauty Balm

I received a sample of this balm with a recent order from BeautySage and I love it! It’s great to moisture the skin, remove makeup and a favorite use of mine: tame flyaway hairs! I think I’ll purchasing a full-size in the future. The One Love Organics skincare line mostly features Chia seed oil.

Annmarie Gianni Anti-Aging Facial Oil

The chia oil in this product is said to provide an ulta-glowing face and lots of hydration.

 

 

 

 

 

Foods Alive Organic Chia Seed Oil

Last but not least, pure cold-pressed Chia seed oil from Foods Alive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources (click for links): Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics The New York Times Well + Good NYC Prevention.com Organic Authority 

My Birthday Wishlist: Beauty

Birthday Wishlist: Beauty

Guess what? My birthday is this Friday! I cannot believe it will already be August, the summer is just flying by and I am not ready to be one year older…okay maybe it’s not all that bad!

Of course I was easily able to round up some of the products I’m currently lusting after for my very own birthday list. Now if only I were to get all the things on this list…(Are you paying attention, family and friends? haha) Looking back, I could have been a bit more extravagant in my wishing but what can I say, I’m trying to be realistic even in my dreams…

1) Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Desired Glow, $54– I’m a lover of cream blushes and there’s nothing I love more than blushes that also double as bronzer. This beautiful suble tan is said to be perfect for light to medium complexions and is easily blendable, plus the ingredients are 95% organic and how could you not love the super-chic packaging?

2) Kjaer Weis Mascara, $38– Okay, I’m on a Kjaer Weis-kick but this mascara has been raved about by almost every beauty-loving eco-chick and is said to be lengthening, long-lasting and luxurious. As far as organic mascaras go, it is the “creme de la creme” and is also refillable (refills are sold separately) so as to avoid bacteria buildup. So cool!

3) RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Promise, $36– I’ve said it before but I love multi-use products and this RMS Beauty product is one I’ve been dying to try. The Lip2Cheek is a cream product that can be used as a lip or cheek tint. Promise is described as a “warm salmon with a subtle warmth” so I believe it’d be a great pop of natural color on my pale skin, perfect for the remainder of summer.

4) ILIA Beauty Tinted Lip Conditioner in Bang Bang, $24– I’ve been dying to try ILIA’s Tinted Lip Conditioners as my lips are normally dry and this specific product is supposedly very moisturizing and soothing. Bang Bang is a popular colors as it’s a beautiful, sheer red that is easily buildable.

5) One Love Organics Morning Glory Brightening Complexion Booster, $48- I’d really love to add some serums to my skincare routine and this One Love Organics serum sounds amazing. The claims are that it “counteracts dullness, puffiness, and unevenness with a intelligent combination of organic ingredients and omega acids. Plus, the zesty lemon peppermint scent provides a natural mood boost.” All the ingredients are soothing to the skin and are organic/plant based including Vegan-sourced Omega 3 fatty acids which “smooth lines and defend against environmental damage.” I also love that the skincare line partners with different artists and designers for unique, attractive packaging designs.

6) RGB Nail Polish in Pool, $18- I’m really more of a nude nail polish color kind of girl but there’s nothing like a beautiful pop of color and from a five-free* nail polish line like RGB (*Contains no Formaldehyde, no Toluene, no DBP, no Formaldehyde Resin, no Camphor). Maybe it’s the influence of the summer season but I’m loving this aptly named, bright baby-blue color in Pool. Perfect against tanned, summer skin whether lounging outside or out on the town. This is also from RGB’s Summer limited edition nail color line.

7)  Bdellium Tools Green Bambu brush set, $89.10- There is nothing more that I love than beautiful makeup besides beautiful makeup brushes. Not only are these brushes super cute (they’re green-colored!) but they are made from soft, synthetic, vegan bristles and sustainable bamboo handles. This set includes 15 professional-grade eco-friendly brushes for face, eyes and brows in a nice rollup pouch.

8) Pai Skincare Camellia & Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser, $50-$70 depending on size- I’ve been lusting over all the products from Pai Skincare as many beauty bloggers and makeup artists have raved about this organic, London-based skincare line that focuses specifically on sensitive skin types. I have very sensitive, reactive skin and am curious about this cleanser, a top-selling product. It’s recommended for all skin types but works specifically well for dry and sensitive skin. The formula is alcohol and detergent-free which maintains the skin’s natural oil balance and doesn’t irritate skin. It has hydrating properties, while replenishes the skin with Omega 3 and Vitamins A, B & E and also acts as an eye makeup remover.

9) Alima Pure Satin Finishing Powder, $20- I love the concept of mineral foundation, though I’m always hesitant to try it due to my super-dry skin (it has never been a fan or mineral or powder-based foundation). Alima Pure is one of the best natural, mineral makeup lines and I think their Satin Finishing Powder sounds just divine for setting my makeup. The powders come in 5 colors to suit most complexions and the names are just as pretty: Yuki, Keiko, Hanae, Ami, Sayomi. I also love that this product is free of many yucky ingredients: “no bismuth oxychloride (BOC-Free), no carmine(ci 75470-Free), no nanoparticles, non-comedorgenic (won’t clog pores), high pigmented”.

Have you tried any of these products? What’s on your current wish list? 

Au Natural Factual Friday: Argan Oil

By now we’ve all heard about argan oil one way or another as it’s having quite a moment in the natural and mainstream beauty communities.

Known for its many nutritive, cosmetic and medicinal properties, argan oil is derived from the kernels of the argan tree, which is endemic to Morocco. This is why the oil is now also widely known as Moroccan oil. For centuries, the people of southwestern Morocco specifically, the Berber tribe, have traditionally used argan oil as a staple food ingredient and for medicinal purposes.

Map of Morocco

Besides being adaptable to the harsh environmental conditions of Morocco and the Sahara desert, the argan tree is also listed an endangered plant species and is under the protection of UNESCO (Unite Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). As it is derived from an endangered plant and only grows in such a small, specific location, argan oil itself is considered one of the world’s rarest natural oils.

An argan tree in Morocco

With its growing appeal and many nourishing benefits for skin, hair and body, argan oil is currently in high demand from companies all over the world. Claims in using argan oil are that it strengthens hair, revitalizes and moisturizes skin and is a delicious addition when cooking food. The main ingredient in argan oil is Vitamin-E, a great natural resource for healthy skin, and also comprised of 80% fatty acids.

As with all natural oils, there are also many products on the market claiming to be “Pure Argan Oil” but also include a mixture of chemicals. Be aware of false claims and research products carefully. Check out this list of what to look for in recognizing impure argan oil here.

Traditionally, the Berbers collected undigested argan pits from the waste of goats that climbed argan trees and ate the fruit. Mainly a job for women, the pits were ground and pressed to make the oil used for cooking and in cosmetics. Today, the argan oil you will find in most cosmetic and personal care products are from harvested nuts straight from the tree. (No need to worry about the goats!)

Berber women processing argan oil

The sustainable sourcing of argan oil and the Fairtrade connection that has been created with the local Berber women adds a positive light to the idea of using argan oil and its environmental impact.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, the social and economic benefits from the argan oil industry in Mororco could also be life changing for many locals. “It’s hoped that poor rural women in particular would benefit from expansion of the argan oil industry in an arid region with few industries and employment prospects.”

With this newfound hope for the argan oil industry, Bloomberg Businessweek states an increase in exports and eventual sales in Morocco: “Morocco’s exports of argan oil have more than doubled in the past five years, to more than 700 tons”. However, due to the endangered status and slow-growing nature of the argan tree, scientists are challenged with the future of argan oil’s overexposure and rising demand.

Have you tried any products containing argan oil? I’m looking forward to purchasing some pure argan oil for my hair!

Sources: The Christian Science Monitor 

Bloomberg Businessweek

Natural News

http://www.purearganoil.net/argan-oil-find-ou/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argan_oil

Beauty in the Limelight

When it comes to celebrities and beauty, there aren’t too many in the limelight that promote natural/organic makeup or feature themselves wearing it. Nor are there many public figures who advocate for the use of less chemicals and irritants in personal care products without looking like a total-granola-hippie.

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Miranda Kerr- beauty behind the words

And then there is Miranda Kerr: the Australian model, celebrity-married, darling of our day. I’d heard she created an organic skincare line, Kora Organics, but it was not until a recent interview posted by Into the Gloss, that I truly took notice of Kerr’s lifestyle and her insight on beauty.

As a model in the industry where your face and your body is under constant direction and slathered with so many harsh products, it’s a wonder that Miranda Kerr has a good outlook on natural beauty and natural living.

From looking at the website, Kora Organics products seem to be free of parabens, synthetic fragrances, sulfates as well as it is Australian made and owned. Products are vegan and not tested on animals as well as certified by ECOCERT Greenlife.

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Kora Organics by Miranda Kerr

Though many celebrities may come up with a fashion or beauty line as more self-promotion, it seems that Kerr had a respectable mission in mind when creating Kora Organics:

“I started Kora because I was looking for a certified organic skincare line that gave me results and was aesthetically pleasing. I couldn’t find one. I’m not against non-certified products, obviously—I use them all of the time for my job—but I try to minimize my exposure to chemicals. It’s a balance.”

I do empathize with this, finding certified organic products that are effective and aesthetically pleasing are definitely things I always try to check off my list when shopping! And like Kerr states, though it’d be ideal to be totally free of exposure to chemicals, in this day and age we all must find a healthy balance.

“You don’t have to be 100% strict with yourself. It’s about balance, being kind to yourself, and knowing what works, but not feeling like you have to do everything. For me, it’s 80% health-conscious and 20% indulgence. I try to avoid saying ‘always’ and ‘never,’ because we’re human beings, and it’s not always possible. But to be educated and aware of what you’re doing before you do it is the key.”

I too share her ideology that we cannot always be 100% natural or 100% strict in using chemical-free products but it is most important to be self-educated and aware of the ingredients we are using for our bodies.

For myself, I’ve been working towards using less chemically-heavy products and using as much natural ingredients as possibly in my daily life. I believe it is difficult to truly be 100% natural in all aspects of my life but having an awareness of what I am putting on and in my body while understanding the biology of personal care products and educating others is most important to me.

Read the full interview on Into the Gloss here 

Learn more about Kora Organics by Miranda Kerr and shop here

Which celebrities that promote natural beauty are your favorite? Have you tried any Kora Organics products?

*This is not a sponsored post and reflects my own opinion.

Images from Kora Organics

The One That Got Away

One of my earliest memories of shopping for makeup was during the summer before 8th grade. I had triumphantly received a gift card to Sephora for my birthday as a gift from a friend. With only a mundane knowledge of sparkly lip gloss and neon nail polish, I dragged my mom to the makeup haven that was Sephora to make my very first “upscale” makeup purchase.

Always the researching geek, weeks prior to our Saturday shopping trip, I scoured my teen glossies and read up on which hot makeup products I would want to purchase. And that’s when I first laid eyes on what would be a 10+ year obsession with…. the famous Nars Multiple Stick.
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I am a sucker for products that allow me to multi-task; highlighter/pen duos, a purse that is a clutch, wallet and crossover bag in one, a dress that can be worn 20 ways (see: American Apparel)–you get the idea. So, as a teenager with a limited knowledge of (and experience with) makeup, the coveted Nars Multiple– a tinted lip, cheek and eye product in one beautifully packaged stick was like an epiphany to me. It also seemed like the best bang for my (gift card) buck.
As I pulled my mother towards the Nars section in Sephora, and stood face to face with my holy grail, an eager Sephora associate stepped up to us and politely asked if we needed any help. I told her that I was looking to purchase a Nars Multiple because I loved how multifunctional it was. She wrinkled her brow, frowned with disdain and said “But you’re so young to be using a Nars product. Why don’t we try something alittle more…fun? You’re too young to be trying something so boring.” I was confused, was she telling me I shouldn’t buy the one thing I had been obsessing over because she was assuming the interests of my age demographic? She explained that the Nars brand was usually purchased by older women or girls who had more makeup experience. My adolescent heart took a dive and feeling ignorant of the associate’s “educational” statement about what I should be buying as a teenage girl, I listened.
The associate steered me over to all things “fun”, sparkly and brightly colored courtesy of the hot brands of my youth: Urban Decay, Hard Candy and Stila (brands I actually grew to love). She brushed on some opalescent green shadow to my lids (“Mold” by Urban Decay), swatched a bubble-gum pink polish for my stubby nails (Hard Candy polishes which hustled teenage girls with the removable plastic, jeweled finger rings housed on top), and picked out an equally bright pink Stila lipgloss. Satisfied with her handiwork, she asked if there was anything else I could do and through my glazed eyes I watched her proudly walk away.
Not knowing what else to do and with a bunch of popular makeup products in my hands, I purchased everything the pushy associate had given me, the Nars Multiple only a faded dream in the back of my mind. While we headed to the register, I added one more product to my makeup spoils, one that made me rest easier on my guided decision to erase the Nars Multiple from my heart: the ever-popular Stila Convertible Color in Peony. Still a classic today, the Stila Convertible Color helped mend my broken heart over the Nars Multiple as it is a 2-in one cream blush and lip product housed in a cutely colored compact mirror.
Years have passed and though I’ve been distracted by other coveted makeup products, I’ve still been dreaming about owning my very own Nars Multiple. I wonder about when I do purchase one soon (maybe for my upcoming birthday), if I will feel justified for that time when a Sephora associate told me to buy makeup better suited for my age or if I will feel no differently and just accept the fact that I didn’t listen to my heart’s one strong opinion in a shopping matter…
Thanks to more natural options available today, I will be replacing my long-lived lust for Nars Multiples with other multi-use face sticks which don’t contain all the nasty chemicals. Currently loving: ILIA Beauty’s Multl-Use Sticks or Vapour Organic Beauty’s Aura Multi-Use Blushes.
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Do you have any long-loved products you can’t get over?

A Fresh Look for Any Summer Event

Fresh Summer

Summer is officially here and it’s heating up! I like to keep things simple as the weather gets warmer, so simple, neutral makeup are the base of my beauty routine. Stay cool and make a splash at any summer event in a light, flowing dress paired with  nude espadrilles, large sunglasses, wrap bracelets and a brightly, colored crossover bag.

When it’s hot outside, I tend to simplify my makeup routine so products like the ILIA Beauty Multi-Task Stick, which can be worn as a blush, lip tint or eyeshadow, are top on my summer makeup list. A moisturizing concealer is a must when I dont want to wear much on my face and the 100% Pure Cosmetics Fruit Pigmented Concealer is not only made from super fruits that are good for your skin but it also includes SPF 20 to protect you from the sun’s harmful rays.

Looking forward to kicking off the summer with more July fourth celebrations this weekend!

What are some products you love to use as we enter the summer season?