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  • DIY Facial Oil
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  • Pacifica Body Product Review
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  • Homemade Vapor Rub
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  • DIY Neosprin-Healing Salve
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  • Ask the Aesthetician....
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The Natural Girl’s Guide To Sephora…

The Natural Girl's Guide to SephoraDon’t you just love going to Sephora?  It’s like a girly heaven-so much makeup and beauty products all in one place!  The problem is, 80% of the store is off limits to someone who has sworn off harmful ingredients!  The better I get at reading labels and resisting the urge to buy chemical laden products the harder it has been to find makeup, perfume and skin care I can feel good about!

I wanted to give all you natural ladies out there a different view on Sephora-It’s still a place you can go and not compromise your beauty values!

Natural Lines at Sephora:

If you’ve followed this blog at all, you’ll know I LOVE tarte Cosmetics!  You just can’t go wrong.  I have not found another makeup line that leaves out the harsh chemicals like tarte does.  There isn’t one product that I haven’t loved, and I’ve tried most of them.  Go HERE for my review of their lip products.  Usually when making or buying products that are more natural, texture, colors and absorption can be off.  That’s why there are so few makeup lines that are leaving out the chemicals.  Tarte is in-store and Sephora offers testers for most everything they sale of tarte’s so play away!  Exceptionally note worthy are their blushes.  I also am on my 3rd Tarte mascara and love them all.

Bite Beauty is such a fun line-Their motto is “beauty for lips that’s good enough to eat”!  They have loads of colors, textures and liners to choose from.  Bite is also in-store so once your done with the tarte aisle, have a go with the Bite products-You’ll be sure to find just the right color!

Lavanila—-HOLY MOTHER OF PEARL.  Seriously, I am so perfume deprived it’s not even funny.  I miss perfume more then I miss drug store deodorant.  I have made my own perfume but to be super honest-the staying power is just not there.  Plus, getting just the right mix of essential oils is just plain hard.  Lavanila is a non-toxic perfume line that offers scents with a base of vanilla and top notes of grapefruit, lavender, lemon and coconut.  None of those sounded to promising to me until I tested them.  I used to wear Thierry Mulger’s Angel.  These perfumes are comparable.  I’m 100% in love with this line and can’t wait to buy everything!  They also offer body butters and deodorant and their fragrance comes in spray bottles ($58) and roller bottles ($19).  Not to mention they have a sampler gift set as well!  LAVANILA is free of: petrochemicals, phthalates, propylene glycol, mineral oils, silicone, synthetic dyes, synthetic fragrance, sulfates, parabens, aluminum, and chemical sunscreens. Lavanila is in-store so go have a good whiff-you’ll die!

Alterna is a hair care line that, according to many beauty gurus is amazing.  Specifically their 48 hour volume spray.  Apparently it really does last 48 hours and clinically proven to increase volume by 105% !  I’m pumped to try this out especially since I found that this line is free of parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, phthalates, GMOs, triclosan.  Alternna is in most Sephora stores and comes in a travel size for $10 so you can try it out without wasting money if it’s not all everyone claims it to be!

Josie Maran is a argan oil line.  This skin care line has now expanded into makeup.  I honestly have not tried it out but it is a pure line and I have every intention to give it a go.  Josie Maran is in-store with testers.

Deborah Lippmann is a 5 free nail polish line.  If that makes no sense then go HERE.  Great polish brand with amazing colors to choose from!  It is also in-store.

Korres, Jurlique and Jack Black are all skin care lines with a similar philosophy.  They are leaving out harmful chemicals and leaning toward homeopathic remedies.  Jack Black leaves out the most harmful chemicals and I love that it is a line aimed totally at men.  Korres is a Greek line while Jurlique is a French line both on my to-do list.  Sephora does carry some if not all of these lines in-store.  Seems like there is quite a bit of on-line only with Jurlique.

Earth’s Nectar is a hair care line that focuses on curly hair.  It is free from dyes, mineral oil, petroleum and parabens.  It seems very apothecary-esque with scalp oils, a leave in detangler and curl taming conditioners all using natural oils.  Some products are in-store while some are online only.

And there you have it!  It’s a longer list then you thought, huh?  I have been planning this post for a long time but just recently got around to really digging for more info on certain lines.  I hope I haven’t over-looked a line-DO let me know in the comments!!

Stay tuned for my upcoming guide to ULTA!

I’m excited to include a lot of products from these lines in my Christmas list this year!  Check out my list below!!

My Sephora Shopping List!

 

xx, Jenni

P.S.-Don’t forget about this deal….

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Tamanu Oil

Tamanu OIlTamanu oil is an oil we should talk about.  It’s a lesser known oil then coconut oil or rosehip oil but it is said that tamanu oil has qualities that allow it to be very effective for healing damaged skin.  Many people suffering from acne have found great relief and clearing when using tamanu oil!

Tamanu oil is an amazing tool when it comes to healing and regenerating the skin!   It is  antineuralgic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antibiotic, and antioxidant.   There is much emphasis on it’s anti inflammatory property which can be extremely helpful in all skin conditions, especially acne and eczema.  Because of it’s anti inflammatory talents, many sufferers of joint and muscle pain have found relief using it topically!

Tamanu contains a fatty acid called calophyllic acid, and an antibiotic lactone and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agent called calophyllolide. These and other components of tamanu oil, including anti-inflammatory coumarins, account for some of the oil’s beneficial activity.  Impressive, huh?!

Because of tamanu’s ability to regenerate damaged skin and accelerate cell turnover, it is a great anti aging oil.  It contains a large amount of fatty acids which help to smooth and plump the skin.  It also contains a large amount of antioxidants which we know helps combat the pesky free radicals that are causing aging in the skin!

The reviews on this oil are almost 100% positive.  Many people find it helpful with healing acne much more quickly.  Some say it’s the perfect moisturizer and others say it is a bit drying.  It all comes down to trying it for yourself.

Benefits of Tamanu Oil:

  • Reduces scarring
  • Reduces stretch marks
  • Accelerated healing for scrapes and acne
  • Encourages skin cell regeneration
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Reduces Pain
  • Offers muscle and joint relief
  • Contains a high amount of antioxidants

Ideas on How to Use Tamanu Oil:

  • Apply 2-3 drops nightly as a serum/moisturizer.
  • For acne control, add melaleuca essential oil and/or lavender essential oil to your bottle for extra zit zapping power!
  • Use in lip balm, and facial oil recipes for healing damaged skin.
  • Add to homemade healing balms for added healing power.
  • Use as a spot treatment to help clean, heal and renew skin after a blemish.
  • Apply to wound before bandaging.
  • Apply to stretch marks and scars daily.
  • Apply to sunburns.
  • Apply a thin layer on psoriasis and eczema problem areas daily.
  • Smooth over aching joints and muscles-As a bonus, add peppermint for added pain relief and cooling.

My Personal Experience with Tamanu Oil:

I’m really enjoying using this oil.  My skin is dry yet I deal with a lot of texture issue caused from blackheads and congestion in my skin.  I do find that this oil absorbs really quickly which is so nice.  It’s not drying so far for me, but it’s definitely not an oil I could use as a moisturizer.  I do have to apply a moisturizer once the tamanu soaks in.  I have not had any blemishes lately so I can’t speak personally about accelerated healing.   I do plan to use this oil as a spot treatment at the first signs of any blemishes!

>>I have created a lip balm using tamanu oil for intense healing of chapped lips-It also contains olive oil and lavender to further plump and rejuvenate the lips!  You can buy this new lip balm creation HERE or scroll down for my special recipe to make it for yourself!<<

Tamanu Oil

My Tamanu Oil of choice is from Mountain Rose Herb-Their tamanu oil is cold pressed, unrefined and organic.  Basically it’s the purest form of this oil.  According to MRH Tamanu Oil “has been thoroughly researched, and the conclusive evidence on its ability to heal damaged skin is overwhelming. Its benefits are notable for scarring, stretch marks, minor cuts and abrasions, rashes, sores, and much more. It can be used directly on the skin or mixed within formulations.”

You can find MRH’s tamanu oil HERE.

Tamanu Lavender Lip Therapy

1 TBSP. Organic Cold Pressed Olive Oil

1 tsp. Tamanu Oil (find it HERE)

1 tsp. Vitamin E Oil (find it HERE)

1 tsp. Beeswax (find it HERE)

5 drops of Lavender Essential Oil (find it HERE)

Directions:

  1. Fill a medium sized pot 1/2 way full of water.  Turn stove top to medium heat.
  2. Place a glass pyrex bowl with a spout in the water.
  3. Add Olive Oil, Tamanu Oil and Beeswax to the bowl and allow beeswax to melt.
  4. Remove from heat, add vitamin E and lavender.
  5. Pour into lip balm tubes or tins.  I love these tins HERE.  Find tubes HERE.

If you would like to try out this lip balm pre-made, for a limited time, I have Tamanu Lavender Lip Therapy in my Etsy shop!  Go HERE to order!

Tamanu Oil Lip Balm

xx, Jenni

 P.S. Be sure to leave a comment below if you have any experience with this oil, or have another oil you’d like to rave about!

Deals of the Week!!

deals of the week

It’s officially the holiday season!  Time to start thinking of Christmas gifts-I’m already so overwhelmed!!  Luckily this is also the season of amazing sales and I’ve got the insider codes and deals you’ll need to survive the season!

Gap 30% off CODE: HAPPY ends 11/14

Macy’s 25% off CODE: GIFT ends 11/16

Old Navy 25% off CODE: SAVEMORE 11/15

J.Crew 25% off CODE: SHOPNOW 11/17

Kate Spade 25% off CODE: BEMERRY 11/17

Bloomingdales 20% off CODE: HOLIDAY 11/16

Happy Shopping and have a great weekend!!

xx, Jenni

Ask the Aesthetician…

Your skin care questions answeredHi everyone!  In the last installment of Ask the Aesthetician, we discussed where to get started with with natural skin care.  This week I want to talk BLACKHEADS!  Yuck, right?!  Well, I am highly blackhead prone and I have learned some very valuable tools along my own personal skin care journey to keep these pesky blemishes at bay.

First off, what is a blackhead?  Very simply, blackheads are dirt and sebum that get trapped in your pores. Blackheads don’t just plague oily skin types.  They can happen to just about anyone.  Sometimes the blackhead is large and very easily extracted.  Other times, like with my skin, blackheads are tiny but there are many and extracting only results in pain and damage to the skin.

Blackheads usually happen when we touch are skin throughout the day.  They can also occur when we are not cleansing thoroughly and consistently enough.   Blackheads also pop up when dead skin sits on top of the skin and clogs the pores.  Of course blackheads occur from hormonal imbalances as well.  A very small percentage of blackheads occur due to using oils on the skin.

Tips on Eliminating and Avoiding Blackheads

  1. Wash your skin thoroughly 2x a day.  As soon as you awake, wash your skin.  I get lots of questions about the morning after oil cleansing.  Many of you want to simply rinse of with water-DO NOT DO THIS.  I love the oil cleansing method.  It is excellent for purging clogged pores while being a gentle way to clean your skin.  If you want to oil cleanse morning and night, that’s fine by me but if you are only oil cleansing at night, make sure to cleanse your skin in the morning with a good cleanser.  Oil sets on the face while we sleep.  It attract dirt to the skin and if the face is not cleansed when we wake up, our pores will absorb the dirt.  I am currently using THIS cleanser and also THIS one.
  2. Change your pillow cases at least every other night.
  3. Exfoliate regularly.  Scrubs are fabulous for ridding the skin of blackheads.  Using an exfoliator consistently, will go a long way to rid your skin of blackheads.  I have been using Juice Beauty’s Apple Peel Full Strength.  I absolutely love it.  I use it almost every night and have found that my blackheads have diminished greatly.
  4. Tie your hair back while sleeping.  Sleeping on your hair while you sleep can cause clogging.
  5. Be aware of your hands while you sleep.  Just recently I had a patch of blackheads on my jaw just on one side.  I finally realized that I was sleeping with my hand on my jaw-GROSS!!  Once I started correcting this, my skin starting getting better with increased exfoliation and better morning cleansing.
  6. Keep your hands off your face throughout the day and wash your hands often.
  7. Don’t forget DIY pore strips.  They work really well for some and not so well for others but it’s a cheap and easy DIY and worth a try!
  8. Clay Masks are super helpful.  Clay pulls from the skin.  Check out more about clay masks HERE.

A word of advice for facial lovers…

Often when you get a facial, your aesthetician will extract your blackheads.  I remember clutching the sides of the facial chair in pain while some overly aggressive facialist went to town on my sad skin!  I would come out of a facial looking awful-red, blotchy and swollen.  Now days I know better.  Squeezing blackheads that don’t come out easily can be so detrimental to your skin.  I’m talking busted capillaries and scarring can happen!  My advice is to gently squeeze your blackhead-if it doesn’t pop right out, move on to plan B (the above 1-8).  You don’t want to force that puppy out at the sacrifice of your skin!  Exfoliation and thorough cleansing will work when you commit to it.

I hope these tips will help with clearing your blackheads!   Be sure to leave your questions for the next post in this series below!

xx, Jenni

 

Tumeric Yogurt Brigthening Mask

turmeric maskTurmeric is a BIG DEAL in middle eastern cultures.  Many Indian women swear by using turmeric in their beauty regime-I think they are on to something because Indian women typically have beautiful skin and age slowly.

Turmeric has anti inflammatory, antiseptic, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties.  Turmeric helps fight acne and blackheads.  It has also been known to help other skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.  It is used to help heal and prevent dry skin, slow signs of aging, diminish wrinkles, and improve skin’s elasticity!  Wait, what??!!

turmeric mask 2

Yogurt is amazing for the skin as well-Not only does it contain probiotics to help rid your gut of bad bacteria, (read more on how the gut is the key to beautiful skin HERE) when you put it on your skin you get the benefits of zinc and lactic acid!   Not only does the lactic acid in yogurt give you a bit of an exfoliation, the yogurt itself is very nourishing and helps combat the drying that can come with an acid.  Zinc is excellent for reducing sun spots and scars.  Add a bit of lemon and you really get a mask with some skin lightening power-not to mention the acid in lemons helps with more exfoliation!

One more bit of info. about yogurt-It is said that Cleopatra-our ancient beauty guru, used to bathe in yogurt due to the wonderful results for her whole body!  If Cleopatra did it, it’s probably a good thing!

Honey is just crazy good for the skin.  Read more about honey and the skin HERE.  Honey is antibacterial as well as very nourishing for dry skin.  It’s helpful with healing as well.  Honey is also antioxidant rich which will help fight free radicals that are trying to age you faster!

As you can see, this is a power pact mask that is easy to make and does wonders for the skin when used on a regular basis.

I will worn you-TURMERIC STAINS!!!   This is a very messy mask and you will need to be careful with how you prepare and use this mask-I’ll clear that up better after the recipe!

turmeric mask 1

Turmeric/Yogurt Brightening Mask

1 tsp. plain yogurt (greek works well too)

2 tsp. organic turmeric

1/2 tsp. raw honey

1/2 a squeezed lemon

Thoroughly mix yogurt, turmeric and honey together in a small bowl.  Cut a lemon in 1/2 and squeeze the juice over your mixture.  I love lots of lemon but too much can burn some skin types.  Also, too much lemon can make your mask very runny so be aware of the consistency-we want it to stay on our skin and not drip.

THIS MASK WILL STAIN YOUR SKIN ORANGE AND MUST BE REMOVED WITH A FACIAL CLEANSER! 

I suggest you apply this mask and leave it on for 15-20 minutes.  Plan to do it before a shower.  I made a huge mess once my mask had been on my skin and I was ready to wash it off.    The first time I used this mask I got orange all over my bathroom counter, all over my white hand towel and not to mention my orange skin afterwards!!  This is why I suggest rinsing it off when you get in the shower so your towel isn’t involved until it’s completely removed.  Also be ready to wash your face about 2x.  You might even need to use a toner after the shower to further remove the orange.  For me, I was bright orange after I removed the mask with just water.  After washing my face once all the orange came off, but just to make sure, I washed again.  OH and just so you know-the orange did not come out of my white towel after the washing machine-so it really does stain!!  Watch out for your clothes!

Turmeric and Yogurt DIY mask

This might sound like a big mess but it’s totally worth it!  My skin feels so nourished, replenished and smooth afterwards.  I love that I can make a mask that not only will not clog my pores but will help my existing clogged pores while replenishing my skin with hydration at the same time!!  Not to mention the anti aging!!  It’s the Swiss army knife of DIY masks!!

I found turmeric at Target but it is such a popular middle eastern spice that you will find it at an Indian or even Asian market if your local grocery store doesn’t have it.  I don’t think you’ll have an issue finding it though.

Please comment below and let me know how much your skin loved this mask or share other homemade masks that you love!!  Commit to doing it every week for at least a month-you’ll love it!

xx, Jenni

UPDATE: A reader shared with me that this mask stained her hair line and it’s been months and has not come out!  Be very careful around your brows and hair, especially if it is light.  My mask gets in my brows every time but I haven’t had the issue of it dying my hair-my brows are dark though.