Friday Face Off, Vegan Food

Friday Face-Off: Vegan Cream Cheese


Want some carbs with that schmear? I’ve been obsessed with Everything Bagels and cream cheese for breakfast lately. Something about half of a Whole Foods Everything Bagel covered with some cream cheese makes my mornings so right—wait, what?! Cream cheese?! You heard that right! Vegan cream cheese is almost indistinguishable from it’s dairy-filled counterpart, but probably tastes way better—if you get the right one that is. To help make your decision-making much easier, we’re going to compare two of the most popular cream cheeses on the market, at least where I live.

Tofutti Cream Cheese


At first glance, this cream cheese has the color of tofu (that almost off-white egg shell color) and the consistency of cream cheese mixed with a touch of gelatin. The tofu color probably comes from that fact that the second, third, and fourth ingredients are: expeller processed natural oil blend (soybean, palm fruit and oil), maltodextrin, soy protein, tofu.

While this cream cheese is marketed as “Better Than Cream Cheese,” I would have to staunchly disagree. However, if you’re in a pinch and jonesing for vegan cream cheese, it’s not…bad. The only reason I don’t like it is because of the consistency and some what due to it’s taste.


If you’re interested in buying this, I bought it at the “alternatives” section of my Jewel-Osco. I think it’s fairly accessible at regular grocery stores.

Vegan? Yes!

Taste: 5/10

Price: ~ $3.99 (depends on where you live)

Kite Hill Cream Cheese


Where do I start about Kite Hill cream cheese? When I opened it, it looked like real cream cheese. Note that the first time I tried it, I bought the chive flavor which was the only flavor that was available.


The consistency is super creamy (the Jalapeno flavor is a tad bit gelatinous, but truly only 2% more). The taste is even more amazing. I had meat-eaters try it and they love it. My husband tends to favor it as well!


The only place I can find Kite Hill cream cheese in my neighborhood is at Whole Foods. They have plain, chive and jalapeno. According to Kite Hill, you can find them at Sprouts, Publix, Target and other retailers across the U.S. in addition to Whole Foods. You can use their Store Finder to locate it near you.

Vegan? Yes!

Taste: 9/10 (only because I wish the flavor was a little stronger)

Price: ~ $5.99 (the packaging recently features a 50 cent coupon, which I always use at checkout…the site also features a $1.00 off coupon here)

The Verdict? Kite Hill winds by a landslide.


Question of the Day

What’s your favorite dairy-free product? And what do you usually eat for breakfast?


Friday Face Off, Uncategorized

Friday Face-Off: Vegan & Cruelty-Free Foundations for Oily Skin

FFO6-1If your face is a natural oil-slick like mine and you like playing with makeup, then you’re on a never ending hunt for matte foundation. The Clinique Stay Matte Foundation was my holy grail, until I found out that Clinique is NOT VCF (like why?). So my hunt continued and after a lot of research, I caught a new animal. Check out the face off below to see if this new VCF foundation measures up to the Clinique foundation.

Clinique Stay Matte Oil-Free Makeup


This is probably my 5th or 6th bottle of the Clinique Stay Matte Foundation, that’s how much I loved it. I tried foundations from Giorgio Armani, Estee Lauder, IT Cosmetics, Pacifica and so many more looking for a VCF foundation and haven’t found one that keeps my oil at bay.

This is a lighter consistency foundation that doesn’t leave a cakey look. Best thing though is that it leaves your skin looking radiant and oh so nice.

Longevity: About half-a day, best when touched up with powder foundation every 4-5 hours.

Price: $26.00 

Quality: Amazing. Goes on smooth, dries nicely and is build-able.

VCF: No 😦

Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation


The Kat Von D Lock-it Foundation is definitely a thicker foundation. A little bit goes a long way and I found that it’s best applied with a damp beauty blender…I use the orange sponge from Real Techniques. It comes in a lot of colors, so be sure to get color matched to get the right shade, only because it’s a high-coverage foundation. Last thing you want is a face that’s a much different shade than your body.

Longevity: It stays on ALL day–verified. Best when set with a powder.

Price: $35.00 for 1 oz.

Quality: Fantastic! Doesn’t feel cheap, but CAN look a little cakey if too much is applied.


Question of the Day

What’s your favorite VCF foundation?

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Friday Face Off, Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Friday Face-Off: Face Masks!

I don’t know about you guys, but this week has literally felt like an eternity. Am I 80 yet? Well, no but I dang sure feel a century older. Luckily, I’ve got self-love on my side. That’s right, I’m not afraid to admit that I’m working on loving myself, and a part of that if taking care of your skin so your inner glow can shine just that much brighter, and who am I kiddin, so we can look hella cute, amirite? So, Friday night = self-care because I really do have the soul of an 80 year old. Curling up with books and wine is my kinda Friyay. Anyways, it also means slathering on a face mask and scaring the hubs (what I do best). So to start your Friday night self-care routine off right, you need to have the right face mask on deck. Today, I’m reviewing a face mask from Glam Glow and a face mask from Asili Naturals (which ya’ll already know is my ride or die, but will it beat the godliness that surrounds Glam Glow?). Let’s put the two to the test!

1. Glam Glow


Glam Glow definitely lives up to it’s reputation. This Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment Mask feels cooling on the skin and is fairly easy to apply with a makeup brush. Fingers work too but it’s too messy, because it tends to dry up pretty fast.

Quality: After I put the Glam Glow face mask on, I left it on for 20 minutes. They suggest you leave it on for either 5, 10, 15 or 20 minutes, so I went with the latter because ya’girl needed some clearing. What’s cool about this mask is that it has something called a Pore-Matrix™ technology that show up as dots where it apparently extracted dirt as it dries. After it dried, I washed it off with warm (scalding) water and it felt smooth after that! I can’t tell if my face had less dirt on it or if the Pore-Matrix was life changing, but overall, I wasn’t mad at it.

Best Way to Apply: With a makeup brush.

Price: $24 for 0.05 oz/15g aka hella expensive.

Where to Buy: I bought mine at Sephora with a discount, but you can find it at various retailers, including Amazon.

VCF?: According to ethicalelephant, GLAMGLOW is not cruelty-free and they do test on animals when required by law. BOOOO.

2. Asili Naturals Spirulina Clay Mask

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As always, we can count on anything from Asili Naturals to be made from plant-based ingredients, and this Spirulina Clay face mask is no different.



Quality: As you can see, this Spirulina Clay Mask is MUCH thicker in consistency and a little drier than the Glam Glow mask. It goes on the skin thick as well but spreads out pretty easily, again with a brush. It does harden and while it doesn’t have the Pore technology that Glam Glow has, I trust it’s working because it’s made for all-natural ingredients, specifically: Purified Water, Bentonite (Clay), Safflower Seed Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Citric Acid, Spirulina Pistensis (Spirulina) Powder, Lavendula Augustifelia (Lavender) Essential Oil.

I left it on my face for about 5 minutes (they recommend 1-5) and I washed it off with warm water after wards. I can honestly say that my skin felt like a baby’s butt, or what I imagine a baby’s butt would feel like.

Best Way to Apply: With a makeup brush.

Price: $24 for 12 oz/340g aka hella affordable. (Look at the size of the tub!)

Where to Buy: Ordering through Asili Naturals is the easiest.

VCF?: 100%!!!

The Verdict

Asili Naturals wins by a LANDSLIDE. That’s right, the famous Glam Glow mask has been dethroned. If you’re looking for a stocking stuffer or a fun “thinking of you” gift, you can never go wrong with self-care products, and this whole tub will last what will feel like a lifetime.

Question of the Day

What face mask is your favorite? Share with the VCF fam!

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Friday Face Off, Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Friday Face-Off: Bath Bombs! Lush, Asili Naturals and Whole Foods

Bath bombs. No other time than fall and winter do baths with some chocolate and wine sound like the perfect way to end a night. Throw in a bath bomb and you’ve got the perfect marriage of perfumed water glistening with oils and nutrients to soak your skin in warmth. Let’s get real. Not everyone has time for baths these days. Whether you’re a #girlboss, a mom or both, baths can be a luxury. So today, we’re facing off three different bath bombs, so you don’t have to waste your time and money trying to choose which one to use! (I tried to stay fall-themed and get them all in the same scent, but Whole Foods didn’t have pumpkin (like how?))

1. Asili Naturals Pumpkin Spice Bath Bomb

FFO4-1We all know about my undying love for Asili Naturals. With that said, it was time to see if that love extends to their bath bombs.

I have to point out that this bath bomb, is 100% plant-based. How awesome is that? Ingredients:  Baking Soda, Citric Acid, Corn Starch, Witch Hazel, Coconut Oil, Pumpkin Spice Blend Essential Oil, Food-Grade Mica Powder

Once you drop it in the water, it fizzes and fills your room with the scent of pumpkin spice essential oil (move over PSLs!). It creates a good amount of bubbles and well, just feels natural you know?

Price: $3.00 for 1.85 oz.

VCF: 100%!

Ingredient Quality: 10/10 (7 ingredients)

2. Lush Bath Bomb in Pumpkin Bath-o-Lantern

Now, I’ve always liked the way Lush products look. This one in particular looks like a carved pumpkin, I mean come on s’ cute. But the con I have with Lush bath bombs (which is kind of also a pro) is that they’re so darn crumbly and hard. I could clearly use this one for multiple baths but how do you cut it exactly in half or a quarter and save the rest? I’ll leave that to my bath aficionados.


This Pumpkin “Bath-o-Lantern” is a fizzer. This would be a great one for the kiddo’s bath time because it turns your bath water BRIGHT orange and it fizzes away turning your bathwater into Sunkist. As far as the scent goes, Lush describes it as, “a spicy-sweet pumpkin pie perfume full of exotic pimento, sweet vanilla and cozy, warming cinnamon.”

As fun as this bath bomb is, the thing that makes my spine tingle a little are the ingredients. I know that Lush is cruelty-free (AWESOME), but they could work a bit on what they put into their products. For example, this bath bomb has 15 ingredients, the last of which are Fragrance, Orange 4 and Yellow 8. Completely unnecessary, I think. The others are all naturally occurring ingredients in essential oils, is what they say so we’ll go with it. I guess it wouldn’t be that fun of a bath time without those last few ingredients! *shrugs shoulders*

Price: $7.75 for 7.0 oz.

VCF: 100%

Ingredient Quality: 7/10 (15 ingredients)

3. Whole Foods Fizzing Bath Bomb in Lavender Vanilla


The Whole Foods Fizzing Bath Bomb is a fun and effervescent, yet all-natural way, to get your relax on in the bath tub. It feels soothing and fizzes nicely when you place it into the tub. The one downside though is that it didn’t create many bubbles (maybe I picked the one sad bath bomb and it wasn’t bubbly enough?), but the scent was still amazing.

As far as ingredient quality goes, it has 9 ingredients and none of that Orange 5 or Sky Blue 4 in it. All natural for the most part.

Price: $3.00 for 2.3 oz.

VCF: 90% Not all of their fizzing bath bombs are vegan since some are available in “milk and honey”

Ingredient Quality: 10/10 (9 ingredients)

The Verdict

Tie between Asili Naturals and Whole Foods! I would say Asili Naturals won by a thread because of their ingredients and product quality but Whole Foods is just a hair behind. The cost for quality is great for both, but I know exactly what I’m getting with Asili Naturals products AND I’m supporting a woman-owned business instead of a corporation which is always a thumbs up in my book.

Question of the Day

What are your fave bath bombs? What is your favorite part of your self care routine? Do share!

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Friday Face Off, Vegan Food

Friday Face-Off: Vegan Protein Shakes

If you’re like me, you don’t eat breakfast. It’s such a terrible habit, but hey, if you’re not hungry when you wake up, why force-feed yourself, #amirite? When I do feel that hunger creepin’ in though, I still opt for something light and liquidy. If tea and (vegan) creamer just isn’t doing it, I usually go for a vegan protein shake.

I normally make my vegan protein drink at home with some vegan protein powder, frozen banana, maca powder (more on this to come) and almond milk, but sometimes, ya just want to be lazy! As a busy boss lady, I need my on-the-go options, which brings us to today’s Friday Face-Off: Vegan Protein Shakes!

Halloween is just 4 days away and if you have kiddos or are throwing your annual Halloween chili cook-off or something, then you’re probably short on time. Hell if you wake up, you’re probably short on time these days (raises hand). Which is why aside from fruits or vegetables, protein shakes are a good option to keep you goin’! I decided to put three to the test. These three came up in my research as some of the best.


Price. Each of these tetra-paks ranges from $2.50 to $3.50 depending on where you shop. I bought all three at Whole Foods. I personally think that’s a hefty price for 11 fluid ounces, of which all of these are. A pack of four is usually $12, so no real savings there either. I would check places (that aren’t Whole Foods), like Fresh Thyme, Sprouts or Jewel-Osco (Safeway) for when these items go on sale.

Now let’s go into the taste and nutrition of each separately with staged pictures that have nothing to do with the product (this one was a weird shoot, ya’ll).

1. Vega™


Taste: Vega protein shakes are either a hit or a miss. This one though, was a bit of a both. The flavor is a BIT chalky, but otherwise it’s good. It has that almost fake chocolate after-taste to it, which actually doesn’t taste as bad as it sounds. 6/10.


Nutrition: 1 carton is 170 calories, 4.5g of fat, 14g of carbs, 20g of protein and 7g of sugar. On the protein front, that’s a high protein to calorie ratio, which is always a good thing in my book. The protein comes from hemp, pumpkin seeds and peas. Looks like most of the sugar comes from coconut palm sugar and stevia leaf extract as well, aside from natural sugars.

When To Drink: I think this would be best to drink for breakfast or after a workout.

2. Evolve™


Taste: You guys. Have you tried Evolve protein before? I haven’t had their powder, but these protein smoothies? Scrumdiddly yumptious. They’re smooth and taste like the flavor they’re supposed to. So far I’ve tried chocolate and the vanilla flavors above. I have “Mellow Mocha Flavored” staring me down for lunch today. 10/10.


Nutrition: 1 carton is 150 calories, 0g of fat, 17g of carbs, 20g of protein and 6g of sugar. While this has just a couple more carbs than the Vega protein drink, it is a GREAT option for those on a low-fat, no-fat diet. I mean, those fat grams can seriously add up, especially when using this as part of a protein shake you make at home or something. After adding in all the fruits, veggies, powders, nuts and the kitchen sink, it can be a calorie bomb! With that said, this is pretty dang nutritious. As far as these drinks go, the ingredient list is much shorter than the other two.

When To Drink: I think this would be best to drink as a snack or before a workout because of the higher carb count.

3. Orgain Organic Nutrition™


Taste: Um, no. It tastes as fake as fake protein powder gets. Personally, not a fan. But if you don’t mind that fake taste, then more power to you! It’s not as bad as I say it is #dramaqueen, but in contention with the others, it definitely fell short. 4/10.


Nutrition: Ringing in at 220 calories, this protein drink is the highest in calories among them all. It also has 6g of fat, 25g of carbohydrates and 16g of protein. Nutritionally speaking, that isn’t the best ratio. It also has 9g of sugar.

Keep in mind that not ALL Orgain drinks are vegan. Some are made with whey protein. The good thing is, you can easily tell which are vegan and which aren’t: they tell you on the packaging itself.

When To Drink: Lower in protein and higher in carbs makes this more of a snack or meal replacement of sorts.

Verdict? …and the winner is…EVOLVE protein! Between the taste and it’s nutritional facts, this guy takes home the gold, some roses and maybe a teddy bear from the crowd. I think it’s well worth the price for the taste (although I would still have a hard time dropping $12+ for a case of 4–I’d run through that in no time). OK back on track–this is the good stuff.

Question of the Day

What protein drinks are your favorites? Do you have any go-to options? We’d love to know!

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Friday Face Off, Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Friday Face-Off: Artis Makeup Brushes


Artis makeup brushes disturbed the makeup industry and every Youtube Beauty Guru kind of lost their ish. Needless to say, I was part of that crowd, but I was also super skeptical. They do look kind of like toothbrushes, after all. So I decided to put them to the test.

Let’s start with the Artis brush. You’ll have to excuse the fact that I only bought one because…

Price. ONE Artis brush. That’s right, just ONE Artis brush ranges anywhere from $40 to $70. The one pictured below is the Artis Elite Smoke Oval 7 Brush, which costs $62, and closer to $65 with tax. I picked mine up at Nordstrom.


Quality. Although the packaging is nice, it doesn’t feel like $70 packaging, whatever that may be. What I did like about the quality of the brush was the sturdy handle and the good balance it has. You can’t tell from the image below, but it’s balancing on just one of my fingers, so it has a good weight ratio.

Also, the bristles are really soft and the perfect amount of dense. It feels soft to the touch and smooths on makeup without leaving brush strokes behind. According to Nordstrom, it is made exclusively with CosmeFibre, a revolutionary engineered fiber made for applying cosmetic and makeup products.

FOF2-8VCF? With that said…yes! Artis is cruelty-free and vegan. The brand strictly believes against animal testing.

Now, let’s take a look at one of the many dupes on the market for the Artis brush. The one I purchased came in a kit of 10. It is the Yoseng Makeup Brush Set.


Price. I bought this set of 10 Yoseng Makeup brushes on Amazon for $13.99. All of the brushes came in their own plastic sleeves, all packed in another plastic pouch. This pouch was in a black box and as with most Amazon purchases, it came unharmed and intact.


Quality. I couldn’t believe it guys. When it comes to the quality of the bristles, it wasn’t a far cry from the Artis brush head. They felt just as soft and evenly spread my makeup…WITHOUT leaving brush strokes or brush hairs behind. I seriously couldn’t believe me eyes. Compared to my Real Techniques brushes, these brushes evenly smoothed the powder over my foundation and set everything into place. Btw, the Yoseng Makeup Brush set also comes in four color options: Black, Golden, Rose Golden and Silver. #notsponsored (seriously, how many times can I say that). I opted for the Rose Gold, only because it’s pretty and shiny, and ya girl’s a sucker for shiny.



The one negative thing when it comes to the quality of these Artis makeup brush dupes is that the handle feels rather clumsy. I tried to take a photo of balancing it, but I wasn’t able to so that weight ratio simply isn’t there. Which, TBH, I’m not sure it matters. But when I was applying powder onto my face after prepping my skin with SPF face lotion and matte foundation, I felt like the handle may break at any moment–but only time will tell.


VCF? According to the Amazon page, the material is high quality premium synthetic fiber, free from chemical treatment & hypo-allergenic & cruelty-free. So yes! They are!

Verdict? Purely based on price and quality for value, the winner is the Yoseng Makeup Brush set, with Artis super super close behind. If you’re thinking about splurging on the Artis makeup brush, I say go for it, BUT see if this type of brush is for you by purchasing a dupe first. And of all the dupes, this 10 brush set is solid.

What are your favorite VCF makeup brushes? Do you own Artis brushes and like them? What dupes have you tried?

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Friday Face Off, Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Friday Face Off: Facial Cleansers (Soap)

We all want squeaky clean faces without hearing squeaks from harmed animals. With that said, today, we are starting off our FIRST EVER VCF Friday Face Off with facial soaps! What could be more fitting for a Friday Face Off than that, okurr?


Let’s start with one of my tried and true favorite brands: Asili Naturals. If you’re new to them, Asili Naturals is a plant-based skincare line that, unlike others on the market, is so crazy affordable AND is actually truly plant-based. Unlike Origins or other brands that claim to be plant-based, Asili Naturals uses only the best and you can tell; not just when you use the product, but also when you take a look at the ingredient list.

It’s ALWAYS (I’d bet my life on it) whole ingredients. I mean check it out. All that’s in this Asili Naturals Face Soap (how cool is that–it’s handmade) is coconut oil, purified water, castor oil, sodium hydroxide, apricot oil and black seed oil shea butter. Ya’ll. That’s literally 6. Count ’em. SIX ingredients.


I know what you’re thinking. Sodium hydroxide? That’s the one that’s unlike the others on that list. Well if you want to literally clean your face, sodium hydroxide is necessary. It’s a safe chemical agent used for saponification, or in layman terms, it’s used to dissociate dirt from water. The rest, like the coconut oil, apricot oil and all else are there to treat your face to the best of oil yummyness. I usually follow this up with some sort of facial oil and then slather my body with Asili Naturals body butter after.


Let’s move on to the more commercial product, Dove Soap. TBH, I love Dove Soap commercials. They’re seriously so convincing, and what’s more convincing is that doctors often recommend it as a facial soap to people suffering with acne. And I’m not going to lie, I’ve seen the results: it works…that or my friend just has amazing genetics. I’m willing to bet on the latter. But when I really thought about it, I began to wonder–are they cruelty-free? Are they vegan? What’s in this soap? So I looked into it.


14 ingredients, guys. FOUR. TEEN. That’s a LOT. And if you look closely at them, not one of them is a naturally occurring or plant-based substance. They’re all chemicals. When I realized this, my eyes about popped out of my head. Worst yet (sorry Dove), not one of those ingredients is an oil or a moisturizer to really treat and calm your face after ridding it of dirt.

Ok, no I lied. This is the worst yet. Dove is NOT vegan OR cruelty-free. So using Dove is like using soap that was used to torture a super innocent animal that thought it was just getting cleaned. Nope.

Verdict? Asili Naturals wins! AND it’s Bloo Certified.

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What’s your favorite facial cleanser or soap to use? Share with us below! Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

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