Elegantly Eco

Eco-Friendly Beauty, Fashion, Reviews, and Info


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Top 15 Best Skincare, Makeup, Haircare and Bodycare Products of 2014

Now I know you’ve been waiting all year long for me to publish this post right? Just kidding! But in case you were curious, here’s what I tried in 2014 that made an impression on me.


Skincare
1. Holistic Vanity, Rosacea Care, Healing Immortelle Tonic – This toner is so hydrating and calming for my sensitive skin.
2. Antipodes, Brightening Serum – Looking to brighten your skin gently and quickly? This worked so well for me.
3. Lavina, Barbary Fig Seed Oil – A hydrating, non-irritating and luxurious oil. This is a daily essential in my skincare routine now.
4. Osmia Organics, Spot Treatment – This spot treatment is great at treating blemishes without drying my skin out!
5. Batty’s Bath, Dead Sea Mud Mask – A nice thick, one ingredient mask.

best of 2014-makeup2

Makeup
6. Lippy Girl, Lipstick – Vegan and crafted in BC, these lipsticks have some intense colour. They now also make eyeshadow, blush and foundation!
7. Red Apple Lipstick – Vegan and eco-friendly these lipsticks give conventional toxic lipsticks a run for their money.
8. Sappho Cosmetics, Pressed EyeShadows – Finely milled and with great colour payoff these are some amazing eyeshadows.
9. Haut Cosmetics, Bio Mineral Foundation – Still the best mineral foundation I’ve ever used.

Haircare
10. Batty’s Bath, Conditioner – I actually use this as a setting lotion and it works well for my curly hair.
11. Sudsatorium, I Drink Your Milkshake – A luxurious smelling conditioner that makes my hair soft and shiny.

Bodycare
12. Kynk Naturals, In the Raw – a fair trade shea butter that’s light and oh so hydrating.
13. 100% Pure, Vanilla Bean Body Cream – First tried this as a sample and it impressed me so much I bought the full sized product.
14. Leaves of Trees, Coffee Argan Scrub – Love coffee? You’ll love this lovely coffee scented scrub then.
15. Therawise, SHO Healing Ointment – An all-natural alternative to polysporin that works so well!

What’s on your best of 2014 list?

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Green Beauty Holiday Gifts For $30 and Under

I’m the kind of gifter that doesn’t like to give people things I haven’t tried before. So here is a list of my favourite holiday gifts to give. I’ve tried all of these at one time or another and can attest to their wonderfulness!


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Olive Authentique Soapsread review

Made in Quebec, this company is a regular at the One of A Kind Show and I picked some soaps up for gift giving. I love their Dead Sea Mud Soap!
Cost: $10.00 CAD, 100 g / 4 oz
Available at: Olive Authentique, Logan & Finley


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Osmia Spot Treatmentread review
For the acne prone this little roll on can be a life saver. So I would this to someone who’s struggling with acne. Who doesn’t want the blessing of clear skin?
Cost: $26.00 CAD, 5 ml / 0.16 oz
Available at: Clementine Fields


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Lavina Barbary Fig Seed Oilread review
I love this oil for it’s richness and hydrating properties. This is also safe for sensitive skinned and acne prone people.
Cost: $29.99 CAD, 10 ml / 0.33 fl oz
Available at: Lavina


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Leaves of Trees Argan Hand and Body Lotionread review
This is a cute little tube of hand lotion that looks like toothpaste! Comes in a variety of scents: Lavender, Frankincense, Orange Blossom, Pink Grapefruit, Rose Cardamom and Unscented.
Cost: $25.00 CAD, 150 ml / 5 oz
$15.00 CAD, 37 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Leaves of Trees, Fresh Faced


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Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Shaving Gelread review
For the men in your life whom you’re secretly trying to convert to green beauty products. My hubby uses this and loves it!
Cost: $11.99 CAD, 207 ml / 7 oz
Available at: Well.ca


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Pure Anada Pressed Blush or Eyeshadowread review
For the makeup artist wannabe, you can create a customized magnetic compact full of Pure Anada’s stunning eyeshadows and blushes.
Cost: eyeshadow: $8.00 CAD, 3 g / 0.11 oz
blush: $12.00 CAD, 9 g / 0.32 oz
Available at: Glam Goes Green, The Pure Boutique


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Lippy Girl Lipstickread review
If you know any vegans they will love these lipsticks. Lippy Girl also makes blush, eyeshadow and lip gloss!
Cost: 15.50 CAD, 3.8 g / 0.13 oz
Available at: Lippy Girl, White Apothecary


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Sudsatorium Conditionersread review
Know someone who loves scents and conditioners? This would be the perfect gift! Their conditioners are vegan, cruelty free, and fair trade as well.
Cost: $24.95 CAD, 500 ml / 16.9 fl oz
$16.95 CAD, 250 ml / 8.4 fl oz
$9.95 CAD, 125 ml / 4.2 fl oz
$5.95 CAD, 60 ml / 2 fl oz
Available at: The Detox Market, Sudsatorium

So there you have it, my green beauty gift guide for $30 and under. Hope you enjoy it!


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Acne Treatments for every budget level

Hi all, one of the most common complaints I hear about going eco-friendly is that it can be expensive. Not always! But you do have to know what you’re looking for sometimes. That’s where green beauty bloggers like myself come in. We post product reviews so you can get a better idea of what will work for your skin before spending a whole lotta money.

I’m of the mindset where if it works amazing for my skin I’m willing to spend a bit more. But I also pick and choose where I’m willing to spend more. Not all of the products I use are high end. You can do the same easily. Here are three acne treatments I’ve tested at different price points so that you can decide how much you want to spend.

HIGH

MEDIUM

LOW/DIY

Odacite
Black Cumin &
Cajeput Oil

Osmia Organics
Spot Treatment

DIY
Thyme Blemish
Treatment

Read full review here

Read full review here

See DIY recipe here

TO USE: After cleansing skin, apply directly to blemishes.

TO USE: After cleansing skin, apply  directly to blemishes.

TO USE: After cleansing skin, apply directly to blemishes.

THE GOOD: Can be used concentrated or added to  moisturizer. Works fast in concentrated form.

THE GOOD: Gentle formulation
works well for those with sensitive skin.
Rollerball great for easy application.

THE GOOD: Easy to make and easy to customize to personal needs.  Ingredients are easy to find and last a long time.

THE BAD: Can be pricey for those on a budget.

THE BAD: It can take some time to make large blemishes disappear.

THE BAD: Takes a few days to steep. Upfront cost for ingredients if you don’t already have them.

COST: $31.00 CAD,
5 ml / 0.17 oz

COST: $23.00 CAD,
4.7 ml / 0.16 oz

COST: Depends on if organic or non-organic ingredients used

AVAILABLE AT:
The Detox Market Canada,
Fresh Faced

AVAILABLE AT: The Detox Market CanadaClementine Fields

AVAILABLE AT: Get supplies at your natural food store or online

MY RATING: 4/5

MY RATING: 4/5

MY RATING: 5/5


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May/June: Empties

PennyLane-lipbalm-mango
Image source

Penny Lane Organics Lip Balm, Mango Flavour
Read full review here. I finally finished off this lip balm. I have to say, the taste of this lip balm is so yummy though I know it’s not for eating. LOL. It also did a great job of keeping my lips perfectly hydrated. I would repurchase this after I’ve gone through my lip balm stash.
Cost: $5.00 CAD, 4.5 g
Available at: Penny Lane Organics
Rating: 5/5

HolVan-Rosacea-immortelle tonic
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Holistic Vanity, Rosacea Care, Healing Immortelle Tonic
See full review here. My skin had a major freak out a little while ago. So I bought items from the Rosacea Care line to help calm my skin. This was the first item that I finished. Love this stuff! I may repurchase when I run out of my other toners/tonics.
Cost: $26.00 CAD, 100 ml
Available at: Pure + Simple
Rating: 4/5

lavina-barbary2
Image Source

Lavina Skincare, Barbary Fig Seed Oil **PR Sample
Full review to come. Lavina was kind enough to send me some samples of their Barbary Fig Seed Oil & I have to say I love this oil! It’s very gentle, healing, & hydrating. I think I’ve found my HG oil!
Cost: $29.99, 0.33 fl oz / 10ml
Available at: Lavina Skincare
Rating: 5/5

batty-conditioner
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Battys Bath, Conditioner in Happiness
Full review to come. While I really liked what the conditioner did to my hair I wasn’t so enamoured of the scent. Spearmint is associated in my mind with toothpaste. So yeah, I kinda felt like my hair smelled like toothpaste when I used this conditioner. I think next time I repurchase this I’ll get either the unscented or try the coconut cream or buttercream icing scents. Knocking it down a point in ratings due to that.
Cost: $17.00 CAD, 236 g / 8 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 3/5

osmia-sptr
Image Source

Osmia Organics, Spot Treatment
See full review here. This spot treatment really works. I’ve repurchased it before. It was a lifesaver for me with my acne prone skin. But now I’ve found a DIY recipe for a blemish treatment that I can make easily & for a lower cost. So I don’t think I’ll be repurchasing this.
Cost: $20.00 CAD, 0.16 oz
Available at: Husk, Clementine Fields
Rating: 4/5

weleda-calendula-ointment
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Weleda Calendula Ointment

Ingredients:  Calendula Officinalis, Beeswax, Lanolin, Lanolin Alcohols, Sesame Oil, Water.

No review. I was pretty underwhelmed with this ointment. It’s a thick, yellowish colour that goes on easily.  But I can really smell the lanolin in this ointment & that puts me off liking it. Also it didn’t do anything beneficial to my skin other than hydrating it. I won’t be repurchasing this ointment.

Cost: $17.00 CAD, 0.88 OZ / 25g
Available at: Big Carrot, Ambrosia Natural Foods
Rating: 2/5


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November/December: Empties

osmia-sptr
Image Source: Osmia Organics

Osmia Organics, Spot Treatment
I’ve already written a full review which you can read here. I was a little skeptical when I got it. So many acne treatments I’ve used in the past didn’t work. But this stuff works! I would repurchase it now that it’s available at a retail store here in Toronto. But first I want to try a Toronto based brand’s blemish treatment to see how it compares. I’m coming for you Cocoon Apothecary! I always try to buy Canadian first & foremost.
Cost: $20.00 USD, 0.16 oz
Available at: Osmia Organics, Husk Toronto
Rating: 5/5

geodeo-uns
Image Source: Amazon

GeoDeo Detox Complex Deodorant, Unscented:
Kinda iffy about this deodorant. Not all the ingredients are clean. There is PEG-100 Stearate  & Tocopheryl Acetate which both rate a 3 on EWG’s Skin Deep. But I needed a new deodorant as I’d developed a reaction to the one I was using at that point. GeoDeo worked up to a point. I started off feeling fresh applying after a shower but by the end of the day I was a little smelly. Not a lot smelly, just a little. But enough that I would have to rewash the shirt I was wearing. Won’t be repurchasing. Why is it so hard to find a good natural deodorant that keeps working?
Cost: $12,95 CAD, 2.3 oz, 65g
Available at: Ambrosia Natural Foods
Rating: 1/5

holistic-v-lotion
Image Source: Pure + Simple

Holistic Vanity, Brightening Hyaluronic Lotion:
This was part of an intro kit I bought. I’m still finishing off the rest of the intro kit. But I ran out of the lotion since I use it more often. I’ve already repurchased a full sized bottle. I have to say, I really like this lotion. My skin feels really hydrated, dewy & smooth after I put it on. Full review for intro kit to come!
Cost: Intro Kit size $68.00 CAD for set of 4 items, 20 ml each, Full size $68.00 CAD, 100 ml
Available at: Pure + Simple
Rating: 5/5

now-avo

Image Source: Healthy Planet

Now Solutions, Avocado Oil:
See full review here. I got bored of the Avocado Oil after a while. And I even started to get some skin irritation on my thigh, which I thought was weird. I didn’t experience this with the Apricot Kernel Oil which I was using just beforehand. I hadn’t changed anything else in my body care routine except to switch to the avocado oil. I won’t be repurchasing. I’m knocking the rating down a notch for the skin irritation.
Cost: $5.89 CAD, 118ml
Available at: Healthy Planet, Ambrosia Natural Foods, The Big Carrot & Noah’s Natural Foods
Rating: 3/5

yarok-feed_your_do_big
Image Source: Yarok

Yarok, Feed Your Do:
This is one of my fave natural hair brands. I love a lot of Yarok’s products. I’ve repurchased the Feed Your Do several times already. Originally this product came in a 4 oz jar. It now only comes in the 2 oz jar.  But a little goes a long way so I don’t need to repurchase as often as you might think.  I would like to change it up a bit though. Next I’ll be trying a made-in-Toronto brand called World Salon. They have a product called World Buzz that’s a pomade which I hope will give me pretty much the same texture & results as Yarok. I gotta spread the local brand love!
Cost: $18.00 CAD
Available at: Fresh Faced, Saffron Rouge
Rating: 5/5

w3ll-conceal

W3ll People, Narcissist Foundation & Concealer Stick:
See full review here. I finally finished up the sample I’d gotten from Fresh Faced. I’ve already bought the full size in #3 – medium neutral. I like using #2 – fair golden under my eyes, but #3 is perfect for all over my face. As I said in the full review, it’s very natural looking. And it pairs very nicely with my Haut Cosmetics powder foundation.
Cost: sample size $0.75 CAD, full size $39.00 CAD, 0.375oz, 10g
Available at: Fresh Faced, Saffron Rouge
Rating: 5/5

mvo-edc
Image Source: Fresh Faced

Marie Veronique Organics, Everyday Coverage SPF:
See full review here. Yeah, I finally finished up my travel/sample size bottle from the acne intro kit. If not for the emu oil I would’ve repurchased this as it’s perfect for my daily SPF needs. But unless MVO reformulates without the emu oil I won’t buy it again. Same for their Treatment Serum & Treatment Oil which also contains emu oil.
Cost: $42.00 CAD, full sized bottle, 2 oz / 60 ml.
Available at: Lilou Organics, Fresh Faced
Rating: 3/5

be-lippie
Image Source: Bare & English

Bare & English, Vanilla Coconut Lip Balm:
Yum, this lip balm tastes so good! It’s a softer lip balm than I’m used to & I seemed to use it up much quicker than other lippies I’ve tried. I like that these are made in Toronto.  The ingredients are also super clean & simple. Just 8 ingredients: candelilla wax, jojoba oil, almond oil, cocoa butter, vitamin E, coconut oil, olive oil & castor oil. I’m kind of middle of the road on this lippie though. I still found the corners of my mouth getting dry. I also wish they had bigger sizes for the balm.
Cost: $18.00 CAD
Available at: Bare & English, The Big Carrot & Noah’s Natural Foods. See website for more retailers.
Rating: 3/5


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Product Review: @OsmiaOrganics

NMDL had a Friday deal with Osmia a while back. And I couldn’t resist it! I was tired of not being able to try all the interesting products they talk about on their blog. Even though I had to pay in USD, I didn’t get charged duty taxes since my purchase was around $60.00 USD. Just my luck, after I received my order I found out that Osmia is now available at Husk in Toronto.   All images are from the Osmia Organics website.

osmia-fcs

Facial Calibration Serum:

Ingredients: caprylic/capric triglyceride (fractionated coconut oil), olive squalane, aleurites molaccana (kukui) oil, carthamus tinctorius (safflower) oil*, macadamia integrifolia (macadamia nut) oil*, rosa rubiginosa (rosehips) seed oil*, vitus vinifera (grapeseed) oil*, wildcrafted butyrospermum parkii (shea) oil, schisandra sphenanthera (schisandra fruit) CO2, euterpe oleracea (acai) oil, nigella sativa (black seed) oil*, rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) CO2 extract*, GMO-free vitamin E oil, and a proprietary blend of organic and wild-harvested essential oils
36% certified organic ingredients

This serum is supposed to help skin become more even, smooth & assist with regulating sebum. I love the soft floral/herbal smell. Speaking of the scent, it does smell like the lovely ingredients: rosemary, rosehips, safflower oil & macadamia nut oil. But the scent is not overpowering. The texture & consistency is siky, light & oily. I think of this more as an oil than a serum.  Too bad though, my skin didn’t love this serum. It must be the fractionated coconut oil.  My facial skin doesn’t like anything with coconut oil, though it works fine on my body. I’d read on NMDL that some people experienced a detox process. But for me it was never-ending. I kept getting little white pimples all over my face every time I used it.  I decided to give up on it after several days of breakouts & things weren’t calming down.  I won’t be repurchasing. I kept the rating at two because it didn’t work for me, but I love the smell of it so much. Maybe I can just use the rest of the bottle as an oil perfume since I can’t put it on my face.
Cost: $50.00 USD, 0.5 oz
Rating: 2/5

osmia-sptr

Spot Treatment

Ingredients: organic evening primrose oil and essential oils of lavender*, cajeput*, lemon*, parsley, thyme, cypress*, and rosemary CO2*
96.5% certified organic ingredients

This stuff really works! It gradually shrinks the pimple using essential oils of lavender, cajeput, lemon, parsley, thyme, cypress, & rosemary. It’s great because it didn’t dry out my skin at all. I hate it when you use acne serums & then you’re left with a ring of dry skin around the pimple that seems to peel forever. Those rings of dry skin make it hard to put makeup on smoothly.  Anyway, my skin didn’t absorb the oils completely. So for me it was best used in the evening when I knew I wasn’t going to leave the house again.  I don’t mind looking a bit oily if I’m just hanging out at home. Just a note: While I found the oil does sit on the surface of the skin a bit, my face wasn’t oily enough to stain the pillow cases. I would definitely consider repurchasing this. But before I do, I’d like to try Cocoon Apothecary’s spotbuster blemish treatment since they’re a Canadian brand.
Cost: $20.00 USD, 0.16 oz
Rating: 5/5