Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty, Vegan Cruelty Free, Vegan Food

August 2018 Favorites

Well, Fall is upon us, which means there are a LOT of Fall favorites ahead. I figured I would kick of September with a recap of Summer…an ode to the glory days before the cold hits.

Ember Mug

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If you’re like me, you take forever to finish your hot beverage. I sometimes heat up a cup of tea, and leave it and forget about it, only to greet it hours later with an, “…oh yeah.” This mug uses smart technology (and it has an app–what!) to control your temperature and keep it at that temperature. Too hot? You can use the app to cool it down and set it at the exact temperature you prefer. It is the absolute first world answer to a first world problem, which should only be reserved really for the top 1%. Well now, we can live like the Beyonce’s and the Gates’ ūüėČ

Born a Crime – Trevor Noah

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This was my local book club’s book of the month, and I highly recommend it! It’s a really insightful look into Trevor Noah’s life as a child growing up in apartheid South Africa. It reads more like little anecdotes, as if you met Trevor at a bar and he’s just telling you some stories from his life. Very well done. 10/10 recommend.

Favorite Vegan Food

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Sesame Seeds

I put sesame seeds on pretttty much EVERYTHING. It’s zero calories and offers a TON of flavors. Next time you eat something bland, toss some sesame seeds on it (and maybe some sriracha) and you’re golden.

Veggie Wavy Chips

…are way better than the veggie straws (like serious pass). I make my dinner into a dip of sorts and eat it with a bag of these chips (which are labeled vegan and are only 130 calories per bag). Otherwise, we have them on the side with our vegan burgers!

Vegan Chickpea Patties

…speaking of burgers, these patties are amazing! They carry them at Costco, and I’m SO proud that they are carrying a lot more vegan options. Even in their cafeteria! They have a vegan salad and acai bowls too. What? #mindblown

Foreo Luna Mini 2 Face Cleanser

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This face cleaning tool seriously leaves my face feeling SO soft. I talked about it in this full review here, and I still love it.

Barefoot Dreams CozyChic “In the Wild” Throw

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I wasn’t able to find is Barefoot Dreams blankets are cruelty-free, but what I have learned is that it is 100% worth it. It’s the SOFTEST blanket I’ve ever wrapped myself in, and am low-key looking forward to Winter just so I can walk around the house in it…even more than I do now.

Question of the Day

What are you loving this month?

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Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty, Vegan Cruelty Free

Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation Review

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My search for the perfect foundation continues. But first, let me set the stage in case you’re a new reader:

  1. I have oily skin.
  2. I have a brown complexion with red undertones in some areas.
  3. I could have smaller pores.

So what does perfect mean to me? A foundation that doesn’t move around even after a long day on the job, keeps me looking matte and doesn’t oxidize. Well it turns out that these three things are a TALL order for your every day foundation. Not to mention I’m totally entitled and need a foundation with SPF to protect me from all the sun’s realness. Not much right? Wrong.

My search brought me to the Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage 12-Hour Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Sunscreen. Now that name sounds like it covers alllll of my three bases, so I put it to the test. Here are my results:

1. CONSISTENCY: What “Clay” Foundation Feels Like.

The foundation is middle in consistency between watery and thick, however probably leans more on the #thick side (hi!).

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2. LONGEVITY: Does Tarte Foundation Really Last 12 Hours?

This is where I was gravely disappointed. For the first day, it seemed to work fine. I tested it both with a primer underneath and without, however the primer didn’t seem to make that much of a difference. Note: This may have worked awesome for you and let me say that I am totally jelly of you for that, but I do have oily skin, so keep that in mind.

It lasted for about 2 hours before it started to move all around the place. I touch my face when I’m thinking or just taking a pause between projects. Why? No clue. But then I go to the restroom and I what look like little nicks on my face where my foundation moved. It literally sat on top of my skin and didn’t stick to anything. That said, it didn’t necessarily feel like I had a lot of makeup on so that’s a plus.

3. Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation QUALITY

I think the quality is definitely there! It really make my skin look great (I always set my foundation with the same powder), even if it lasted all of two hours. As far as ingredients goes, this one is fantastic when it comes to sunscreen. Both titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are mineral sunscreens, which are much better than the other ingredients on the market that are complete with fillers such as: oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate.

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4. Full-Coverage Foundation COLOR SELECTION

There are 40 color options to choose from, which is a lot more than I can say for your run-of-the-mill drugstore options! I color matched as 44S Tan Sand, and I think it was actually a little bit dark for me, so I replaced it with 40H Tan Honey, which worked out much better. It also didn’t oxidize orange, but I did find that it settles in a bit darker than what you see out of the tube. That may have just been me. Otherwise, I would say err on the side of a lighter shade to find the perfect match.

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5. Is Tarte Foundation VEGAN & CRUELTY-FREE?

Kind of!

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Cruelty-Free? When asked if Tarte is cruelty-free, they say: tarte cosmetics is a cruelty-free cosmetics line. tarte makeup and skincare is never tested on animals.

Vegan? When asked if Tarte is vegan, their answer is: many of our products are vegan! At the bottom of every tarte product page in the tarte shop there is an ingredient listing where you can find the ingredients to the products you’re interested in. tarte cannot guarantee that any ingredients or products were produced in an allergen free environment.

With that said, this Amazonian Clay 12-hour foundation is vegan-friendly, and it is one of¬† many makeup options that are in their “Vegan Friendly” collection: #notsponsored

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Source: Tarte.com

OVERALL

I would recommend this foundation not at all for it’s longevity, but for the quality if you’re looking to smooth out your complexion for a couple hours. A dinner? A photo shoot? A short outing? Perfect. Anything longer than that just didn’t gel with me.

RATING: 6.5/10 because of it’s longevity, otherwise I think it would be a solid 8.5!

Would I recommend you buy it? I think it’s worth a shot to see if it works with your skin.

PRICE: $39 for 1.7 oz. I bought mine at Ulta.

QUESTION OF THE DAY

Do you use this foundation? How do you use it? What do you love about it? If it works for you–you’re so lucky!

Also, if you’re interested in reviewing certain products, let me know which and what you would like to see about them! These other reviews might give you some ideas.

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Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty, Vegan Cruelty Free, Vegan Fashion, vegan lifestyle

Current Vegan Cruelty-Free Favorites {Skincare, Makeup & Fashion}

If you’re like me you live for a good monthly favorites post. Well, I figured a current favorites will quench your thirst for such a post, so I’m sharing what I’m currently loving!

Current Vegan, Cruelty-free Skincare Favorites

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You already know my love for rosehip oil, I mean it’s practically the fountain of youth bottled into a pretty package [not verified ;)] and after trying various serums, I’ve gone back to it. I don’t know why I ever left. Sorry RHO. I usually put it on after I wash my face with the Foreo Luna Mini 2 and swipe some Thayer’s Witch Hazel all over my face (which according to Thayer’s, does not test on animals).

Also, I’m always looking for some awesome body soap. After trying some from Fresh Thyme and Whole Foods, I’ve realized I really love the one from Trader Joe’s. It smells AH-MAY-ZING.

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Best of all, according to Peta and product packaging, Trader Joe’s does not test on animals.

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Cruelty-free Makeup Favorites

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The major highlight (pun intended) of the past couple of months was rediscovering the ELF Highlight and Bronzer duo. Note, I do not even touch the bronzer. It has zero color pay off, which means this duo is only half worth it but really the highlight makes it totally 100% worth it. I know that made no sense. Roll with me.

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You can’t really tell from the picture above but you really have to rub through the top sheen of the highlight to get through to the gold. It’s perfect for my bronze-skinned goddesses–it shows up perfect on my brown skin tone! Adding a little bit goes a long way, and while it comes off a bit chunky at first, it actually blends in quite nicely. BUT use a little bit. I put some on the tops of my cheekbones and on the tip of my nose #shinebright.

Best of all, according to ELF, “We do NOT test on animals or endorse such practices. Our products do not contain animal derived ingredients. Beeswax has been replaced by synthetic beeswax and lanolin has been replaced by Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladinpale-2. We currently support HSUS and are partners with PETA in the Caring Consumer Project.”

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The Real Techniques sponge is also a favorite–you can tell by how dirty it is (sorry–I swear I cleaned it but that brown shade just doesn’t go away). According to their site, they are cruelty-free, “Our products are 100% cruelty-free. We never test products on animals.”

Cruelty-free Fashion Favorite

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If you know me in person, you know that I’m always changing up my bracelets. BUT ever since my then boyfriend (now hubs) bought my me first LotusandLava bracelet at the Phoenix Farmer’s Market some 4 years ago, I’ve been a loyal customer. I probably own upside of 15 bracelets from her shop and continue to be a LAL lover. In fact, I used to treat myself to one every time she had a sale or just cause. I often go to these as the perfect gifts for people for any occasion or no occasion at all.

The ones I showed above sparkle so amazingly in the sunshine. The bottom is a goldstone bracelet, of which she has a different variation now on etsy. The top is my absolute favorite. It’s dark green, but when it hits the light, it shines like the night sky. I have this in a dark navy too that shines just the same.

Question of the Day

Do you like these kinds of posts? Would you like to see these on a monthly basis from me? Thanks as always for your kind support! You’re the reason I do what I do. ‚̧ ‚̧

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Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty, Vegan Cruelty Free, vegan lifestyle

Foreo Luna Mini 2 Review

Foreo4Fam, I’ve bought so many versions of Clarisonic brushes, Clarisonic wanna be brushes and so many more face cleaning tools with little progress. In fact, they all did the opposite. They broke me out, didn’t seem to clean my pores out as much as promised and often left me with more work after (in the form of having to clean dirty brushes). Don’t get me wrong–I’m not knocking those of you who love their Clarisonic brushes! They’re a lot of people’s¬†cuppa tea and they work amazingly for others! (just not for me). SO, I finally decided to try the Foreo Luna Mini 2¬†(thanks for the birthday gift, M-I-L! and not sponsored)¬†for these reasons:

Foreo Luna Mini 2 Review РSize

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When Foreo first came out with their face brushes, they were (and still are) rather large, probably bigger than the size of my hand. I heard great things about them from the onset, but the size kept me from trying it. Fast forward several years, the Foreo now has new options: The Luna Mini, The Luna Mini 2 (what I have), the Play,¬†the Play PLUS, the Mio¬†and now the FoFo. I may even be missing a few options in that list. While the FoFo is their brand-spanking new version (and apparently can diagnose your skin’s state to some extent and has an app, I mean hello fancy), it seems a bit too small for me. I like the size of the Luna Mini 2 enough that I wanted to try it, and I can attest that I lurv it.

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Foreo Luna Mini 2 Review¬†–¬†Sonic Face Brush Type (Silicone vs. Bristles)

So¬†I’m going to keep comparing it to the clarisonic because that’s probably it’s biggest (and¬†most popular) competitor, and probably what most of you are debating between. Now that I can say that I’ve tried both, I can give you an honest review. After having tried many bristle face brushes (electronic and not), I can say that I honestly like the silicone¬†“bristles,” which are actually nubs in the Foreo much more. They seem to irritate my skin far less. In fact, my face isn’t even red after I use it, but I know it’s working. How? I usually wipe a toner over my face after I wash and after the¬†clarisonic, it still picked up some residue. After the Foreo–none. I know. I’m serious. Not to mention, my face felt as soft as a¬†baby’s bum bum after I used it.

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Anyway, it has three zones, and the one that matters to me is the one on the back, meant for those of us with oily skins and my skin has already gotten less oily (I mean, can I get an amen?!). The Amazon description states: Fine silicone bristles on the front care for sensitive to normal skin, while thicker bristles along the top deliver precision cleansing in the T-zone. On the back, broad silicone bristles specialize in cleansing oily skin.

How It Works

This is the easy part. It vibrates for a total of 60 seconds. After¬†every 15 second interval, it almost buzzes so you know to move from one¬†zone to the next, with each¬†zone being: your left cheek, your right cheek, your forehead, and your t-zone. I follow that about 80%. After the 60 seconds is over, it buzzes¬†three times but¬†keeps going. I then run it under the water while it’s still vibrating and it cleans RIGHT. OFF. I¬†hate (abhor) cleaning brushes and this is the easiest¬†it’s ever been. ¬†

According to the Amazon description:

The LUNA mini 2 uses the power of T-Sonic pulsations to effectively cleanse deep below the skin’s surface. With 8 adjustable intensities and 3 zones of varying touch point thicknesses, it is suitable for all skin types.

The LUNA mini 2 removes up-to 99.5% of dirt and oil, dead skin cells, unclogs pores and removes makeup residue.

In Summary

Price: $139 on Amazon, $139 on Sephora.

I like the Foreo Luna Mini 2 face brush because:

  • The Luna Mini 2¬†is much smaller than it’s former iterations (the older ones are larger than my hand).
  • It’s rechargeable (unlike the Play which¬†only lasts for a certain number of uses).
  • It’s¬†made of silicone so it can’t grow bacteria (as far as I’ve read–please correct me if I’m wrong).
  • It’s soft and gentle on the skin because it uses vibrating nubs.
  • How much do you need this? 9/10 mostly because of the price. If it were $50 cheaper, then you need this 11/10.

Question of the Day

What sonic face brushes have worked for you guys? Or do you go the traditional route with simply soap and hands?

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softhands
Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty, vegan lifestyle

3 Steps to Softer Hands: My Experience with Renaud’s Syndrome

I know I’ve talked about this before, but I want to talk about it again! I suffer from terribly, terribly dry hands as a result of Renaud’s Syndrome–my blood circulation is really poor, and the effect of that is most noticeable in the winter time. Being a Cali girl at heart, anything below 60 to me is freezing and my body thinks so too, which is why when winter comes around, it’s like my fingers get frost bites. No joke, I’ve had to wear band-aids just because it gets so cold in my office on a daily basis (winter or not). After years of suffering, I decided to do more than just put a band-aid on the situation (get it?). I sought hand lotion after hand lotion and product and service after another, and¬†this is what works for me! (It may not work for you, but the whole process is kind of like a spa day so make it your own! (Please always consult your physician before starting any new regimen).

Step 1: Get a Regular Manicure

…and not a gel manicure, or acrylics. Just get a regular old fashioned manicure and ask them to pay special attention to your cuticles. Once you get a manicure and your hands feel fresh, free of all hangnails and relaxed after a short hand massage, it’s time to keep up appearances. What I mean is, you need to put lotion on your hands every night and treat your cuticles with some love.

Step 2: Lotion Up! 

I’ve tried nearly every lotion under the sun, and these two have been my holy grails the past couple of months. The Asili Naturals Lavender Shea Body Butter is perfect before bed because of it’s calming lavender scent, and how it sinks into the skin (no messy bedsheets here!). After I wake up and get ready for the day, I then slather on some Green Goo 100% All Natural Hand Goo a few minutes before I head out (so it has time to sink in). My hands definitely drink it in. I bought my Hand Goo from Sierra Trading Post for $10, but you can also find it on Amazon¬†or directly from GreenGooHelps.com. Both products are cruelty-free!

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Green Goo Hand GooANLavender

Step 3: Care for those Cuticles

When I have time to just sit and read or relax, I put on some oil (for the most part, any oil meant for skin will do) and massage the oil into my cuticles for just a few seconds per finger. With Renaud’s my fingertips get really sensitive and makes it hard to do things, like even write sometimes without cringing. Massaging with my rosehip oil really helps my circulation and keeps my hands soft!

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Here are some before and after pictures that prove my method works! You can see that my hands before were peeling, splotchy and red, sometimes also purple due to poor circulation.

Before:

After (posing like a t-rex): 

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Question of the Day

If you have dry hands or skin, or suffer from Renaud’s Syndrome, what works for you?

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