Elegantly Eco

Eco-Friendly Beauty, Fashion, Reviews, and Info


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September/October: Empties

My empties are quite late this month. But at long last here they are!

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Lily of the Desert, Aloe Vera Juice Inner Fillet – No review

Aloe vera is very soothing for the skin and hair. Some people also like to drink it. I prefer to use it externally. I’m currently using this in a hair rinse and in my leave-in conditioner. This aloe vera has a few additives like citric acid and potassium sorbate which rate as a 2 and 3 on EWG’s Skin Deep.

Cost: $29.99 CAD, 3.8 L / 128 oz
Available at: Ambrosia Natural Foods, Well.ca, Healthy Planet
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 4/5

Thayer’s Original Witch Hazel with Aloe VeraReview

Well there isn’t much I can say about this item that I haven’t said before. Witch Hazel is a staple in my medicine cabinet for its versatility. I use it as a toner and I also use it to make my own perfume. I’ve already repurchased this!

Cost: $12.99 CAD, 355 ml / 12 oz
Available at: Well.ca, Big CarrotNoah’s Natural Foods
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 5/5

Silkka Garden Apothecary, Blossom Hydration Mist – Review

This has become one of my favourite mists. I love multi-function products. I use this as a toner when my skin needs hydration. I’ve also used it as a perfume and it’s great on my hair too! I only wish this was available in a refill so that I could just keep the one bottle and keep refilling it.

Cost: $15.00 CAD, 60 ml / 2 oz
Available at: Silkka Garden Apothecary
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 5/5

Phyt’s, Fluide Hydratant (sample) – No review

I received a 3ml sample of this from my acupuncturist JoAnn Alafriz and while I liked the product it seems a bit pricey to me. I also didn’t like that they do not disclose what parfum consists of.

Cost: $88.00 USD, 40 g / 1.4 oz
Available at: Phyt’s Beauty and Spa, Phyt’s USA
Brand Origin: France
Rating: 3/5

Sudsatorium, Java Conditioner – Review to come

As with all Sudsatorium products I’ve tried so far, I love the smell of this stuff! Java conditioner is a lovely, hydrating conditioner. I honestly can’t decide which conditioner I love from these guys. It helps that this local company is also vegan, fair trade and helps grassroots charities. What’s not to love?

Cost: $6.95 CAD, 60 ml/ 2 oz
Available at: Sudsatorium
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 5/5

Sudsatorium, Bosom’s Buddy (aka The Firm) – Review to come

This is a firming lotion which was formerly called The Firm. I know it’s meant to be used for the breasts but I actually used it on my wobbly bits (arms, thighs, belly). I used it for a month and then stopped using it to see if I would feel a difference. The verdict? My skin does feel firmer with this lotion. The only teeny tiny thing I don’t like about this lotion is that the scent is very strong. It does dissipate so that’s good. Despite the strong smell I think I’ll repurchase this because I like the results it gives.

Cost: $17.95 CAD, 125 ml/ 4.2 oz
Available at: Sudsatorium, Natural Code
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 4/5

Flowers to Fragrance, Lavender (Grosso) Essential Oil – No review

I love shopping local and Flowers to Fragrance is a company I first discovered at the Green Living Show. Lavender is another staple in my medicine cabinet and the quality of this essential oil is great! Will definitely repurchase.

Cost: $15.99 CAD, 10 ml / 0.3 oz
Available at: Flowers to Fragrance
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 5/5

Meow Meow Tweet, Grapefruit Baking Soda Free Deodorant (sample) – Review to come

This stuff works! And so far it hasn’t given me a rash like the baking soda based natural deodorants have. I finished my sample from Sarah of Natural Code and have already repurchased a full sized jar.

Cost: $20.99 CAD, 68 g / 2.4 oz
Available at: Natural Code, Well.ca
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 5/5

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May/June : Empties

5-May-June Empties

Flowers to Fragrance, Lavender and Geranium Cleansing LotionReview

This cleanser is a pleasure to use. It’s texture is creamy and the smell of the lavender and geranium is so soothing. It feels like a luxurious treat at the end of a long work day. I love that Flowers to Fragance is a family run business from rural Ontario. I love to shop local whenever I can, especially when the products are this great!

Cost: $19.99 CAD, 250 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Flowers to Fragrance
Rating: 5/5

Flowers to Fragrance, Deodorant Spray in Citrus Lavender  – Review

Unfortunately this deodorant spray didn’t work too well for me once the weather warmed up significantly. It worked fine for me in the cooler weather but also didn’t last all day long. I’m also detoxing at the moment so maybe that has to factored in as well. Anyway I may not repurchase this since it didn’t work well for me.

Cost: $11.99 CAD, 250 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Flowers to Fragrance
Rating: 3/5

Lotus Wei, Joy Juice Mist and Inspired Action MistReview

I’ve loved Lotus Wei’s aromatherapy for quite a while now. I’ve tried other aromatherapy brands but I always seem to come back to Lotus Wei. There’s something very special about the vibrational and energetic qualities of Lotus Wei’s aromatherapy.  Besides the mists I’ve also reviewed their elixirs, serums and perfumes. I have no doubt I will be repurchasing again after I’ve finished off some the other aromatherapy I have in my stash.

Cost: $40.00 CAD, 50 ml / 2 oz
Available at: Detox MarketClementine FieldsLotus Wei
Rating: 5/5

Marie Veronique Advanced, Serum Du Jour (sample) – Review

I finally finished my sample sized bottle of Serum Du Jour. I’m actually surprised how long it lasted. A small amount really goes a long way and helps to offset the price of the full sized bottle. Those on a budget should keep in mind that sometimes you get what you pay for. So pick and choose which items you want to splurge on. This serum is totally worth the price. I will repurchase this serum once I finish off some other serums I have in my cabinet. This sample was provided for review but all opinions expressed are my own.

Cost: Full Size, $90.00 USD, 30 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Marie Veronique
Rating: 4/5

Marie Veronique Advanced, Eye Recovery Serum (sample) – Review

This was another sample provided for review but wow this one really blew my socks off. I can’t tell you how many under eye creams I’ve tried that did nothing at all for my dark circles. This product combined with the lightening serum proved to be a great duo for me. My under eye circles are almost gone. I’ve run out of the sample sized bottle that I was sent and now I’m planning on buying the full sized bottle soon.

Cost: Full Size, $75.00 USD, 15 ml / 0.5 oz
Available at: Marie Veronique, Lilou Organics
Rating: 5/5

Marie Veronique Advanced, Luminous Lightening Serum (sample) – Review

I love, love, love this lightening serum. It worked so well for me that my hyperpigmentation spots are almost gone. I’ve already repurchased a full sized bottle of this serum after having finished the sample size they sent me for consideration.

Cost: Full Size, $110.00 USD, 30 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Marie Veronique
Rating: 5/5

Herbaceutikals, Smooth On Lip BalmReview

This is a nice lip balm. I really love the simple ingredients list and knowing that all the ingredients are safe. I have so many lip balms at this point however that I may not be repurchasing for quite some time. But I do love the farm to product ethics of this brand.

Cost: $4.00 USD, 4 g / 0.15 oz
Available at: Vibe’s BeautyHerbaceutikals
Rating: 4/5

Sudsatorium, Luscious Clay Soap – No Review

One of my favourite local brands, Sudsatorium sells on etsy and is also available now at many stores within Toronto. The luscious clay soap was the first soap of theirs that I have tried. Though I’m a big lover of their conditioners, shampoo and lotions. Now I can say that I love their soaps as well. Besides making me smell heavenly, I loved the slightly gritty texture of the soap which was great for exfoliating. Plus the rhassoul and kaolin clay are amazing at keeping the skin detoxified and purified. This is one soap I’m definitely going to repurchase and if I really like you I’ll give it to you as a gift as well!

Cost: Small, $3.95 CAD, 50 g / 1.8 oz , Large, 100 g / 3.3 oz for $6.95)
Available at: Sudsatorium Etsy Shop, Upcoming Markets
Rating: 5/5

Have you tried any of these products or brands?


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Flowers to Fragrance, Cleanser and Deodorant

Lavender and Geranium Cleansing Lotion

Ingredients: Water, Emulsifier Wax, Sweet Almond Oil, Rose Hydrosol, vitE Grapefruit Seed Extract, Lavender Essential Oil, Geranium Essential Oil

I love the simple ingredients list for this cleanser! It is thick in texture and when I apply it to my face it feels simply luxurious. Sweet almond oil and rose hydrosol provide the moisturizing elements. Grape seed extract contains vitamin E, flavonoids, linoleic acid which is great for healing the skin. Lavender essential oil and geranium essential oil reduces inflammation, balances, tones and purifies the skin. This cleanser was super gentle on my skin and didn’t make my skin react at all. This is a great cleanser all year around and feels most soothing in the dry winter months. As for scent, you can smell the essential oils in it but the scent is mild and dissipates once I finish washing my face. I love the smell of lavender which is calming and I would pump some of the cleanser in my hand and then breathe in a few breaths before spreading the cleansing lotion on. What a treat to have lavender from a local farm in this lovely cleansing lotion! I would definitely buy this again and even give it away as a gift to my loved ones.

Cost: $19.99 CAD, 250 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Flowers to Fragrance
Rating: 5/5

Deodorant Spray in Citrus Lavender

Ingredients: Witch hazel, vegetable glycerin, sea salt, lemon essential oil, grapefruit essential oil, orange essential oil, cypress essential oil, lavender essential oil, coriander essential oil, geranium essential oil.

This deodorant works but it last that long for me. Maybe it’s my body chemistry, but I would find myself slightly smelly the next morning when I got up. Given that this is a natural deodorant that is mostly made up of just essential oils I think that’s pretty great. But for those who are super active or are detoxing, this might not work for them. I’ve finished this deodorant up before the summer has gotten really hot or humid so I’m not sure how well it would hold up in that kind of weather. I do love the smell of this deodorant however. The citrus oils are such a refreshing smell. The skin on my arm pits is pretty sensitive so I’m happy to report that I didn’t have any reaction to the ingredients. I’m currently undecided if I will repurchase this again.

Cost: $11.99 CAD, 250 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Flowers to Fragrance
Rating: 3/5


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March / April: Empties

Bodhi & Birch, Jasmine Falls Bath & Shower Therapy – No Review

This was one of the items I received from Katie Vibes for the previous Green Beauty Swap. This bath/shower gel smells like a dream. I love the scent. It is very strong however. The scent still lingers even after the gel is washed off. So it’s probably not appropriate for those who are scent sensitive. But wow, do I really love the smell. I’ve got to see if I can get this here in Canada.

Cost: $20.00 GBP, 200 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Bodhi & Birch, Naturismo
Rating: 4/5

Heritage Store, Rosewater – No review

I’m not fond of the scent of roses when it’s not the actual plant. I found the scent of this rosewater a bit strong. But that makes sense since it was made using rose essential oil. Using it, I did find that it was hydrating to the skin and hair. But it didn’t add enough benefits for the use and cost even though it’s relatively inexpensive. So I won’t be repurchasing this.

Cost: $9.49 CAD, 237 ml / 8 oz
Available at: Heritage Store, Amazon.ca, Ambrosia Natural Foods
Rating: 3/5

Marie Veronique, Oil du Jour Vegan (sample) Review

I really enjoyed using this oil. There are lots of powerhouse ingredients in this oil, which accounts for its price. My skin loved this oil and soaked it up like a sponge! It also helped to reduce inflammation and contains some sun protection in the form of raspberry seed oil. I would definitely repurchase this oil. In fact, I’m thinking this might become one of the staples in my skincare routine!

Cost: $90.00 USD, 60 ml / 2 oz
Available at: Marie VeroniqueLilou Organics
Rating: 5/5

Batty’s Bath, Facial Primer & Detox Daily Moisturizer Review

Even though it feels like the summer will soon be upon us, I miss the creamy moisture of this facial primer. I finished it off in March and I’m going to repurchase it soon, along with some other items I love from Batty’s Bath!

Cost: $12.00 CAD, 60 g / 2 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

Living Libations, Underarm Charm Review

This deodorant is tiny but packs a punch. It really does work with just one swipe, as instructed on the bottle. I’m currently undecided if I want to repurchase it however. The idea of destroying a sandalwood tree just to make essential oil doesn’t sit well with me even though it’s from an ethical farm and sustainably harvested. Sandalwood is a parasitic tree. From what I’ve read the only way to harvest it is to remove the entire tree from its host. Read more about sandalwood here. It might sound silly to some, but it seems a bit of a waste to let a tree grow for 30 years and then have to destroy it to get the essential oil. The flower child in me gets sad at the idea of killing such a beautiful tree.

Cost: $25.00 CAD, 5 ml / 0.17 oz
Available at: Living LibationsHealth Hut
Rating: 4/5

Pure Anada, Brow Powder in Cliff Review

I’ve repurchased this brow powder at least twice now. A little tiny 1 gram pot lasts forever! I’m so used to it now that I’m afraid to try anything else! Anyway, this is one of the staples in my makeup bag. It’s good, it’s cheap, it’s Canadian and it travels well too. What’s not to love? A definite repurchase.

Cost: $8.00 CAD, 1 g / 0.03 oz
Available at: The Pure BoutiqueWell.ca, The Big Carrot
Rating: 5/5

Jason, Powersmile Toothpaste – No review

This is one of the easiest toothpastes to find even in ordinary supermarkets that don’t carry most natural foods or products. I used this for the longest time but decided to try a different toothpaste recently (Earthpaste). I’m currently liking Earthpaste so I’m not sure if I’ll ever go back to Powersmile.

Cost: $5.99 CAD, 170 g / 6 oz
Available at: Amazon.ca, The Big Carrot, Well.ca
Rating: 4/5


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Living Libations, Underarm Charm in Lavender Poetic Pits

Source

Ingredients: pure, organic, undiluted: sandalwood swirled with lavender, and spikenard essential oils.

I’ve heard great things about Living Libations Underarm charms. I have to admit though, I was really skeptical that this would work on me. For one thing, the bottle looks really tiny given the cost. It’s great for travelling with though, because the bottle is so small. Anyway, when I first started using it, I used too much. Then because I used too much, I found the scent of sandalwood very strong in the beginning. But as soon as I wasn’t so paranoid about stinking I put on less and the scent became more bearable for me. Note to those sensitive to scent: this might not be the deodorant for you. Sandalwood has a strong, earthy smell so if you don’t like the smell then you won’t like this deodorant. With those warnings in mind, I have to say that this deodorant does work. I tested it out for a month and it lasted the whole work day and into the next morning. I didn’t stink at all. This little bottle also lasted me quite a long time. It would have lasted longer if I hadn’t put on so much at the beginning. Why are we always so scared of being a little stinky? I wondered about the cost though, so I did a little research. It turns out that Sandalwood is becoming extremely rare for a number of reasons. It is a parasitic tree that grows slowly. The best essential oil is extracted from the heartwood of the tree which can take up to 30 years to mature. Make sure that if you buy sandalwood you get it from an ethical source and that it is unadulterated. Read more about sandalwood here. I’m currently undecided if I want to repurchase this deodorant, even though it works so well and is made in Canada. 

Cost: $25.00 CAD, 5 ml / 0.17 oz
Available at: Living Libations, Health Hut
Rating: 4/5


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December/January: Empties

Jason, Aloe Vera Moisturizing Gel – No review
I use aloe vera a lot in my DIY recipes. I got this gel when I was at a Nutrition House in the mall and didn’t check the ingredients list too carefully since I was in a rush. Silly me, this gel has fragrance in it among other additives. I didn’t like the smell of the fragrance, plus there can be all sorts of ingredients that comprise “fragrance.” The aloe vera also seemed a lesser quality compared to the Avivir. I will not be repurchasing this.

Cost: $5.99 CAD, 227 g / 8 oz
Available at: Nutrition House, Well.ca
Rating: 2/5

Avivir, Aloe Vera GelReview
This is what organic aloe vera is supposed to be. It feels and smells like it was freshly harvested from an aloe plant. I was really surprised to find this at a natural foods store not far from my home. I haven’t seen it elsewhere in the city at all. Anyway, I’m very glad to have found it. It’s a bit pricey but the quality is beyond other aloe vera gels I have tried. I will definitely repurchase this.

Cost: $7.99 CAD, 100 ml / 3.3 oz
Available at: Ambrosia Natural Foods
Rating: 5/5

Holistic Vanity, Rejuvenating Rosewater CleanserReview, Best of 2013
This is one of my fave cleansers because of it’s gentleness and soothing properties. It has never irritated my skin and I just love it. I think I like it better than the Aloe Kumari Cleanser. I will definitely repurchase this.

Cost: $30.00 CAD, 100 ml / 3.4 oz
Available at: Pure + Simple
Rating: 5/5

Nourish Organic, Lavender Mint Deodorant – No Review
T
his deodorant didn’t work well for me. I had to pair it with another deodorant in order to remain stink-free all day long. Also I didn’t like the consistency. The coconut oil made it too soft and combined with the cornstarch powder it would leave a white sticky residue. It stained my clothes as well. Will not be repurchasing.

Cost: $ 9.99 CAD, 62 g / 2.1 oz
Available at: Ambrosia Natural Foods, Well.ca
Rating: 2/5

Green Beaver, Toothpaste  – No Review
This is your standard eco-friendly toothpaste. It’s a little less solid than conventional toothpaste so you’ll have to be a little careful when squeezing it out of the tube. The flavor I got was mint and it wasn’t overpowering. Soon after brushing I couldn’t taste the mint anymore. I didn’t notice any significant improvements to my teeth or gums. As for price it isn’t as expensive as some natural toothpastes can be. So if you’re looking for an ordinary toothpaste this could be the one for you. Not sure if I would repurchase. But I do like that it’s made in Canada.

Cost: $5.75 CAD, 75 ml / 2.5 oz
Available at: Ambrosia Natural Foods, Well.ca, Healthy Planet
Rating: 3/5


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Product Review: @battysbath Primer, Concealer, Deodorant

All images from Batty’s Bath website.

Facial Primer & Detox Daily Moisturizer

Ingredients: Organic: Cocoa Seed Butter, Shea Butter, Grape Seed Oil, Vegetable glycerol (soy), Japanese green tea extract, and natural: Clays (green, pink, kaolin, moroccan lava), Deionized water, Candelilla wax, Stearic acid, Caprylic/capric triglyceride (from coconut oil), Titanium dioxide (natural oxide), Vitamin E, Rosemary extract, Radish root ferment filtrate (natural preservative).

There isn’t much of a scent to this thick, creamy white primer by Batty’s Bath. It glides onto my skin and provides a nice barrier to the environmental pollutants outdoors. If you read the ingredients list this primer has four (yes that’s right) clays in it! Each clay has a specific purpose. Green is for detoxing the skin, rebalancing oil flow and repairs scars. Pink is for hydrating and skin firming. Kaolin is for “slip” to give your skin a smooth texture so that your makeup goes on flawlessly. Finally Moroccan lava is for rejuvenation, detoxification, toning of the skin, reducing dryness, improves skin clarity and elasticity. With all these clays in there you would think that there might be some colour to this primer but it goes on clear. I was kind of hesitant to try this primer at first as coconut oil tends to break me out. But this primer doesn’t do that to me thankfully. Now that it’s winter here in the great white north my skin really needs a nice thick primer like this one to protect my skin of the harsh temperatures. I also used this primer in the summer and it didn’t make my makeup melt off my face when the weather was humid. It’s really a great all season primer! Those with dry skin will love this primer too. I’ve already repurchased this & will continue to do so.

Cost: $12.00 CAD, 60 g / 2 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

Mineral Concealer in Warm Sand

Ingredients: Jojoba oil, Avocado butter, Sweet almond oil, Aloe, Shea butter, Titanium dioxide, Mica, Cocoa butter, Castor oil, Evening primrose oil, Iron oxide, Zinc oxide, Beeswax, Rosemary extract, Meadowfoam oil, Neem oil, Rosehip oil, Vitamin E.

This concealer is scentless as well. It’s a thick-looking paste in the little plastic tub. But when I dab my finger on it and apply to my face it actually can go on as sheer or as thick as you would like. I use a little bit at a time and build up the coverage I want. The container looks small but don’t be deceived, a single tap of the finger is usually enough for me to get medium coverage. So this little pot will last me a long time. As for colour, despite the name Warm Sand, the colour goes on a bit too white for my complexion. But it does work amazingly well for covering up the dark circles under my eyes and blemishes. As for the ingredients, there’s a lot to approve of in this list. The ingredients read like a role call of what to put on your face if it’s dehydrated and needs some TLC. This concealer didn’t break me out at all, which is a common problem for me. In fact my very sensitive skin was really happy with this concealer. I think I’ll try the next darker colour to see if that’s a better match for my complexion. I hope Batty makes this concealer in a wider variety of colours someday. I’m sure a lot of people would love to get their hands on a concealer like this!

Cost: $12.00 CAD, 5 g / 0.18 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

Natural Deodorant, in Unscented

Ingredients: Coconut Oil, Aloe Leaf Extract, Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Jojoba Seed Oil, Chamomile Flower Extract, Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Essential Oil or Fragrance Oil*, Vegetable Derived Gum, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Vitamin E. *All fragrance oils are phthalate free.

Well since I got this deodorant in unscented, guess what? It doesn’t smell like anything! Go figure. LOL. All kidding aside, I find even if a product says unscented you usually find some kind of scent. If it’s not a natural product it smells like a chemical laboratory to me. This deodorant works for about 12 hours on me. It didn’t begin that way. When I first started using it, the protection would only last for about 8 hours (the length of an average work day). But for some reason it works better on me now. I have repurchased this in Mangoberry and have to confess that I like the scented versions of her deodorant better. The nice thing about this deodorant is that it’s clear, goes on clear, and dries clear. It didn’t stain my clothing. It doesn’t prevent you from sweating so it would be a good idea to wear something that doesn’t show sweat easily. I’ve also bought this deodorant for my dad in Man Musk and Unscented for my mom because I wanted them to stop using the toxic deodorants. They both report that it works well for them. This is important especially for my mom, who has a number of allergies she has to worry about. But she hasn’t had any reactions after using it for months. I will repurchase this and try the other scents to see which one I like best. Besides Unscented, Mangoberry and Man Musk, this deodorant also comes in: Peppermint, Coconut Cream, Cucumber, Margarita/Key Lime, Raspberry and Warm Vanilla Sugar. Just a note though, Batty doesn’t make these deodorants all the time so get them while you can!

Cost: $15.00 CAD, 118 g / 4 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5