Canadian Kalp Ayurveda Review

*This post was sponsored by Kalp- all thoughts are my own.

Founded by Seem Kudesia, a Doctor of Natural Medicine with years of experience in Ayurvedic medicine, Canada-based Kalp offers a line of skincare made of pure, vegan blends of herbs and essentials oils. All products are free from parabens, SLS, animal cruelty, and harmful chemical preservatives. They formulate products for skin types of the 3 doshas – sensitive, dry & oily. Dry skin may mean you are a Vata where the elements of air and space reign. If you’ve got hot or sensitive skin you could be a fiery/watery Pita. Or an oily Kahpa will be aligned with the earth and water? According to Ayurveda, Doshas need to be treated with ingredients that  have the opposite effect. For example, Vata will need elements that are rich, warming and moisturizing. The Pita is warm and strong and works well with ingredients that will make you calm and cool. The Kahpa is naturally moist and heavy and is finely balanced with light and warm astringents. I tried 6 different products from the line for the past 3 months and overall enjoyed the Ayurveda concept and the ingredients, though some products I liked more than others such as the rjra ayurvedic scalp serum and the soap alternative. This is also an affordable line ranging from $20 to $40 with free shipping on orders of $50+.

Read more

Interview with MyMiniReviews

You might remember Antonella as MyMiniReviews on Instagram. She’s an Instablogger in the green beauty community and esthetician that I once had on the blog during my “Skin Talk” series where I interviewed estheticians. Like many others I’ve known during my time on Instagram, she quietly disappeared without a word, so I was happy to hear from her when she messaged me. It turns out she was diagnosed with cancer from the HPV virus and on her 21st birthday no less. Obviously it’s scary to open up about such a thing on one’s Instagram so I offered doing an interview style post for her – which I’m not sure is less or more scary. But whatever the case, go show her some love on Instagram and say hey!

Image result for q iconYou’ve been through a difficult time. Can you share with us what happened?

Image result for letter aYes! Unfortunately I’ve been having lots of health issues on and off. The past year and a half I was going through a lot of ovarian health issues, I was having back to back ovarian cysts that kept rupturing and was diagnosed with endometriosis. I kept having excruciating cramps and knew something was off. I also had a complicated lower eyelid surgery. Due to my accident back in 2013 where I had to get facial reconstruction surgery and had a few more after. I also wanted a break from the green beauty community I’ve been a bit disappointed with certain brands and just there not being much diversity going on.

Image result for q iconWhat has been helping you cope?
Image result for letter aI give thanks to our creator, praying, keeping myself focused with scriptures.  Thankful for certain family and friends. I was doing a lot of yoga too and meditation.

Image result for q iconHas this experience changed you at all?
Image result for letter aIt’s made me more patient and understanding. And stronger!

Image result for q iconHave you noticed any change in your skin? How have you adjusted your skincare?

Image result for letter aYes I have! My skin was breaking out for awhile due to hormonal issues. I also adjusted my skincare to a much simpler routine, being in the esthetics field I always have a ton of products to try.

Image result for q iconAnother skincare question, what do you recommend for pre-fall skincare.

Image result for letter aI love an antioxidant serum for the daytime! Of course a good exfoliador for once a week. And a lot of people might find they need a thicker cream for their Face and body.

Glow Recipe Launch Party at The Grove

Glow Recipe, an online destination for natural and cruelty-free K-beauty, opened their first pop up store at The Grove and threw a lit party to celebrate! They’re a NYC based company and had opened a super successful two-story pop up in Soho and have FINALLY made it to LA. This was also the first time I got to meet co-CEO Sarah Lee, who so graciously invited me to this exclusive invite-only party because she remembered I posted a ton of reviews when they just started and no one knew them! I am so proud of all the things they have accomplished and for putting K-beauty on the map in the US. What a time to be Korean-American! They will be at The Grove until the end of October and have a ton of events, giveaways and special classes happening throughout!

Read more

Derma E Zen in the Bev Event

I was so excited attend Derma E‘s Zen in the Bev event in Beverly Hills this week and had to take a bunch of photos to share and document what was probably the best-looking event I’ve been to. I feel like I have to start off by saying this isn’t an organic green brand, so while it isn’t quite on brand, it is a more natural and affordable option that’s widely accessible at ULTA and Whole Foods.

Not only was this event held at a Beverly Hills mansion with pool and views overlooking LA, there was no shortage of activities scheduled like sound bath meditation, henna, hair braiding, intuitive readings, yoga with views, massages, cupping, facials and more. I mean I’m talking about the works: crystal clear pool with a unicorn floatie, kombucha on tap, acai bowl bar with a dozen toppings, vegan ice cream truck by Frozen Fruit Co, vegan taco bar at the grill, matcha brownies. My stomach and heart was full at the end. Thank you so much Derma E for this super relaxing and beautiful day!

 

 

   

Green Tidings Deodorant & Skincare Review

Green Tidings is a brand I have used and known for years and they even launched an OBL CLUB campaign to have dozens of members test and review their products. You can see what the OBL community thought here. The line was started by Jenny, who after losing her sister to cancer when she was 19, studied natural health and nutrition as a means of preventative health. After having her first child, she created a nontoxic deodorant and since then has expanded Green Tidings into a well-rounded bodycare and facecare line. Their products are nontoxic, vegan, cruelty-free and organic- made in a solar-powered facility and packaged by a nonprofit who provides meaninglful employment to people with disabilities.

The deodorant comes in Lavender or Unscented and is a nontoxic, organic, vegan deodorant made right in Southern California. After using it different seasons and climates, I’ve found that the consistency varies and it can be anywhere between a bit dry/grainy to soft/mushy, especially in very hot weather. There has been some major heat waves lately around the world! A lot of product tends to come off so really only 1 or 2 swipes is needed per armpit. Please note it’s not an anti-perspirant so you WILL still sweat. Even through super hot days I found myself stink-free at the end of the day (personally I do not have terrible B.O. unless I am under a lot of stress!).

Ingredients

Tapioca Powder (Deodorizes, antibacterial, absorbs moisture and great for dry, sensitive skin)
Organic Virgin, Unrefined Coconut Oil
Baking Soda
Organic Shea Butter (Unrefined, Fair Trade)
Magnesium Oil
Wildcrafted Candelilla Wax 

Velvet Oil Blend

This is a multi-purpose thick oil made of a blend of carefully selected oils for face, hair, nails, or body. True to its name, it does make your skin feel velvety after use and works as a great hair-defrizzer. The scent is not feminine or floral – it smells largely of sesame seed oil (it’s 2nd ingredient) and doesn’t contain essential oils to change the scent.

Marula Oil Serum

Judging by its name I assumed this would be a pretty standard face oil serum containing marula and some EO, but it has an interesting ingredients list with Watermelon Seed oil, Black Currant seed oil, Balloon Vine extract (anti-inflammatory and helps with eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis) and Neroli Flower oil among others. I love Neroli so I definitely appreciated the inclusion of this ingredient. The Marula oil is a lightweight, hydrating oil that absorbs very well and has a sweet neroli and herbal scent that isn’t overpowering.

Calendula Face Lotion

On the thicker side, this face lotion hydrates, soothes and calms skin with ingredients like Myrtle Leaf, Calendula, Borage Seed, Oat Bran, Foraha Fruit, Palmarosa Leaf and more. It has a yellow tint to it but does not tint the skin at all and I greatly appreciate the first ingredient is Aloe leaf juice NOT water. There is no skimping here. I think this is a great product, but the packaging detracts from the overall experience. It’s a disk top cap similar to shampoo bottles, because this is a small bottle it’s hard to squeeze the product out because it’s not a liquid gel. A pump bottle would be a better alternative.

All Green Tidings products are:

  • Non-toxic
  • Non-GMO
  • Vegan
  • Certified Organic ingredients
  • Gluten-Free
  • Paraben-Free
  • Solvent Free
  • Preservative Free
  • Certified Cruelty Free

VELVET OIL INGREDIENTS

Organic Jojoba Seed Oil:  Anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory. Very hydrating; keeps moisture in while keeping bacteria out. Helps to reduce wrinkles and stretch marks. Hypo-allergenic.

Organic Sesame Seed Oil: Known as the “Queen of oils.”  High in linoleic acid, which is anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial, and may help with eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, acne, and irritated skin.  Contains antioxidants, which fight free radicals, and are anti-aging.  Rich in Vitamins E, D, and B Complex, which have been shown to reduces scars and skin rashes. Anti-bacterial.  May repair damaged skin cells.  Moisturizes and softens skin.

Poppy Seed Oil:  Super silky, it is high in fatty acids such as linoleic acid, which can help eczema, psoriasis, and inflammation. May help with dandruff. Highly moisturizing, and great for dry, aging, and mature skin. Has skin barrier and protective properties.

Tung Wood Oil and Brassica Campestris Oil Blend:  A purified blend of two oils, which provide natural moisturizing and skin conditioning, with great humectant properties.

Organic Olive Fruit Oil: High in fatty acids and antioxidants, an extremely rich moisturizer.  Neutralizes free radicals. Smoothes wrinkles. Helps with skin cracking and callouses

Carrot Seed Oil:  High in antioxidants, which protect against free radicals, and are antiaging, and may help with rejuvenating, firming and toning skin. Moisturizes without clogging pores.  Contains carotol, which can rejuvenate the look and feel of skin. Helps with age spots and circulation.

Vegan Vitamin EAntioxidant. Repairs damaged skin, fights wrinkles, helps heal scars. Natural preservative.

Sunflower Seed Oil:  High in essential fatty acids and Vitamin E, and is moisturizing, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and reduces inflammation.  It is great for wrinkles, and helps improve skin clarity.

Organic Calendula Flower: A great moisturizer for dry, chapped, or split skin.  Rich in organic compounds, including glycosides, saponins, and other powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds, as well as anti-viral and anti-bacterial compounds, which help with cuts, insect bites, scrapes, red patches, eczema, dermatitis, and helps speed healing.  Can help reduce appearance of wrinkles, age spots, and scars. A gentle and hydrating moisturizer.

 

BEST PLACES TO EAT IN MONTPELLIER, FRANCE

First off, I’m sorry that I didn’t get to show you guys as many beautiful destinations as I got to last summer (Sardinia, Cannes, Monaco, Lisbon, Algarve, Lanzarote, Canary Island- so many last year!). This summer I stayed closer to home, visiting nearby Lyon (2 hours by car from Geneva) and Montpellier (4 hours by train from Geneva) as well as Malta (I’ll be featuring this trip over at Kali’s The Periodical so stay tuned!). Wherever I go I’m most interested in food (and beaches) and in this blog post I wanted to highlight a small handful of must visit restaurants in Montpellier. If you go you probably wouldn’t stay more than a few days anyways so no need for an exhaustive list.

GOURMET

Le Petit Jardin

Image may contain: food

Image may contain: table and outdoor

20 rue J-Jacques Rousseau – 34000 Montpellier – France

Terminal1 Pourcel

Image may contain: people sitting, table and indoor

CASUAL

Burger & Blanchette (gourmet burgers around EUR 14 ech)

L’oignon Givré (veggie buffet)

Tripti Kulai (organic eggie & vegan eatery)

 

Max and Me: High-Vibe & Holistic Skincare

I often get asked, “What’s high-vibrational or high-vibe skincare?”. I like to describe it in layman’s terms as skincare that specifically uses ingredients known to have high energy so they work not only at skin’s cellular level but also on a mind and spirit level. Yes, it falls into “woo woo wellness” or in this case “woo woo skincare” but don’t we all crave a little bit of that woo in our lives anyways. I personally love products that strive to go beyond the physical and delve into other realms that we don’t tap into often throughout the daily humdrum of our lives. The brand I’ll be talking about in this blog, Max and Me- an organic high-vibe skincare line from Austria- describes it beautifully as

“The higher an ingredient vibrates, the purer, the more lit from with in, the gentler yet the more intense it is. The better it can communicate on a cellular level.

High vibrational ingredients are more focused in their effects, more potent in their healing capacities, more talented in targeting troubled conditions. High vibrational ingredients suffuse your skin and your whole being with love, light and an exquisite harmony, realigning all bodily systems (cells, tissues, organs) and energetic centers (chakras, meridians …) with their perfectly balanced, innate structure and rhythm. Initiating regulating impulses, nurturing self healing capacities. All this is so beautiful and powerful for transforming skin’s overall health and appearance.”

Max and Me sources ingredients only from farmers, cooperatives and distillers who carefully harvest wild plants, or practice organic farming and contain:

  • NO parabenes
  • NO petroleum products
  • NO glycols, propylenes
  • NO preservatives
  • NO silicons
  • NO animal products
  • NO genetically engineered materials
  • NO synthetic aromas or colors

Made WITHOUT animal testing.

All max and me compositions are certified according to BDIH
The Sweet Serenity Mask & Wash is a product I like to use exclusively as a mask because it’s so luxurious and I want my skin to experience the maximum benefits it provides. I add several droplets of water to turn it into a light brown creamy consistency, take a deep breath and apply using my fingers or a mask brush. Besides its light exfoliation benefits, I notice my skin looks hydrated and glowy after use. I think this is a gentle yet effective mask if your budget can allow for it.
  • two in one / mask & wash / plus exfoliation
  • rich in antioxidants and super-antioxidants
  • soothes, calms & balances sensitive, irritated, flaky, thirsty skin
  • benefits troubled conditions (acne, rosacea, couperose)
  • provides optimum hydration
  • stimulates collagen

Ingredients

White Kaolin Clay, Leptospermum Scoparium Mel (Raw Manuka Honey), Butyrospermum Parkii Butter1, Garcinia Mangostana Pericarp Powder1, Calophyllum Inophyllum Seed Oil1, Cranberry Seed Oil1, Theobroma Cacao Seed Powder1, Cocos Nucifera Oil1, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil1, Tocopherol, Prinsepia Utilis Seed Oil1, Glycine Soja Oil, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil1, Punica Granatum Seed Oil1, Nigella Sativa Seed Oil1, Gardenia Tahitensis Flower Extract, Helichrysum Angustifolium Flower Oil1, Santalum Album Oil2, Rosa Damascena Flower Oil1, Leptospermum Scoparium Oil3, Citrus Aurantium Flower Extract1, Pelargonium Graveolens Oil1, Pogostemon Cablin Leaf Oil1, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil1, Lavandula Angustifolia Herb Oil2

Pictured above is their new travel kit which includes a travel size version of the I am the Light Facial Oil, Sweet Serenity Rescue Balm and Circle of Protection Body Oil – perfect for keeping skin and body pampered during your travels. Max and Me offers 7 exquisite body oils for the luxury seeker, and Circle of Protection is their most popular. It has a ravishing scent from the fragrant vetiver, magnolia, bourbon geranium and manuka along with exotic litsea, sparkling silver fir and jasmine. This one is for those who want to take their bodycare to new heights.
This is like an emergency balm for seriously troubled skin or skin issues. In a base of shea butter and rosehip oil, it features:
  • Powerfully regenerating immortelle
  • antibacterial manuka
  • balancing wild mountain lavender
  • inflammation taming sandalwood
  • regenerating neroli
  • toning ylang-ylang
  • soothing palmarose,
  • calming patchouli

I like to use this around my eyes as a final nighttime skincare step on days when my skin has been exposed to the sun. I know I can’t stop my skin from aging but I believe powerful products like this one can slow down the free radical damage. The Rescue Balm provides:

  • instant relief for irritated, stressed-out, inflamed conditions
  • renews red, irritated, flaky skin
  • relieves hard to treat skin-issues (acne, rosacea, couperose)
  • calms and soothes deeply

Enchanted Face Oil

The Enchanted face oils is one of my favorite face oils and features a blend of argan, marula, macadamia nut, rosehip, pomegranate, evening primrose with jasmine, frangipani, a thousand roses, champaca, sandalwood and lavender. Every use is like an experience that I relish – it’s hard to describe. It has a complex, sophisticated scent that you won’t find in any other face oil. This oil is for sensitive, irritated and mature skin and provides deep hydration, regenerative benefits and antioxidant delivery.

Ingredients

Argania spinosa Kernel Oil1, Rosa moschata Seed Oil1, Sclerocarya birrea Kernel Oil2, Oenothera biennis Oil1, Macadamia ternifolia Seed Oil1, Punica granatum Seed Oil1, Rosa damascena Flower Oil1, Jasminum sambac Flower Extract1, Lavendula angustifolia Herb Oil2, Santalum album Oil3, Michelia champaca Extract, Cananga odorata Flower Oil1, Plumeria alba Flower Extract, Benzyl Alcohol4, Benzyl Benzoate4, Benzyl Salicylate4, Citral4, Citronellol4, Eugenol4, Farnesol4, Geraniol4, Isoeugenol4, Limonene4, Linalool4, Tocopherol5

This rich oil cleanser works to melt away the day’s pollutants, impurities, make-up and the buildup of environmental and digital toxins. The Purity and Grace also boosts micro-circulation, encourages the flow of lymphe and blood, and releases congestion and dullness with mountain juniper, atlas cedar, hyssop and neroli. It has a subtly sweet earthy scent. I apply 3 to 4 pumps and massage it into my skin and then wipe it off using their face cloth which is made of 50% eucalyptus wood fibers, 25% organic linen and 25% algae.

My Raw Cuisine Workshop with PLANTLAB

PLANTLAB is a plant-based culinary and wellness educational school offering both online and on-site classes around the world. They teach the art of organic, unprocessed, vegan cooking while encouraging students to consider the broader benefits that stem from a “green” and conscious lifestyle. They don’t just teach basic raw cuisine, but refined, elegant and innovative raw cuisine that’s sure to impress even the pickiest eaters.

Creamy carrot soup and key lime tarts that I made

A dish made by a student in one of their advanced classes

I was so excited to have been given the opportunity to try one of their premier RAW Weekend Workshop classes. Literally, I waited for months. They offer a variety of on-site full time intensive courses and 1-day workshops like RAW, Fermented Cheeses, Cacao and Raw Desserts. Their flagship location is in Los Angeles (Venice) but they also offer classes in New York, Chicago, Barcelona and Bali- and of course their online courses can be taken from anywhere in the world.

I arrived at my RAW Workshop on time and joined about 10 other students in a beautiful, spacious kitchen studio on Abbot Kinney. Since class started at 11AM there was plenty of free parking in the public parking lots. The instructor was warm and welcoming and her assistant was there to help with anything you needed. After a brief introduction on raw cuisine and its benefits, we made around 5 different dishes from creamy carrot soup to raw lasagna and key lime tarts to smoothies. I was worried 5 hours might be too long but it went by so fast and before I knew it the class was over. All the ingredients are prepared for you so you simply need to measure, mix and blend. I love that emphasis was placed on the aesthetic presentation of dishes (after all we eat with our eyes first) and a variety of fresh herbs and edible flowers were available to garnish dishes.


Educate Eat Evolve from PLANTLAB on Vimeo.

 

One of LA’s Best: Ciel Spa at SLS Hotel

When’s the last time you’ve had a Bestie Spa Day? If it’s been a while then get on it because it’s such a great way to spend quality time with the bestie that’s different from the usual brunch or happy hour.

Over the weekend I was able to enjoy a fabulous Bestie Spa Day and spa like socialites at the stunning SLS Beverly Hills’ Ciel Spa. I was invited to experience the Biologique Recherche custom facial at the, a celestial 5,000 square foot space complete with five treatment rooms, a couples’ suite with side-by-side tubs, dreamy relaxation room, and a full service hair salon. With a white on white aesthetic and billowing curtains, the spa whisks you to a cloud-like alternate reality that instantly calms mind and soul. Chloe and I arrived around 3:30 PM and left around 7:30 even though our treatments only lasted a little more than hour. She was pampered with a Ciel Signature Massage and legit fell asleep during the massage.

Biologique Recherche Customized Facial

Biologique Recherche is a cult French skincare brand (note it is not organic) and Ciel Spa is one of the only spas in LA to use the line. The facial started off with a detailed skin examination using the brand’s patented Skin Instant Lab. It involved using a variety of probes to check for skin elasticity, hydration, skin damage and more. The results said my skin is the age of over 40, but this is most likely because my skin is very dry. Note to self: drink lots more water and keep skin super hydrated at all times with products.

My facialist Zdenka then proceeded to cleanse and massage the skin before going in with the brand’s strongest, most effective product the Lotion P50, which exfoliates, purifies, regenerates, and hydrates the skin. It comes in seven different formulations to accommodate the needs of all different types of skin and Zdenka customized it as she felt was best for my skin.

The next step was the mask and I had a combination of the Mask VIP and Masque Vivant which felt cooling and tingly. The Mask VIP has unique composition of essential fatty acids and cucumber extract to revitalize the epidermis and the Vivant contains yeast extract to regulate and purify skin.  Then using a machine she massaged off the mask using 2 probes that delivered microcurrent deep into the skin.

It didn’t end there though! The next to last step was cryo and Zdenka used chilled metal balls to gently massage and tighten the skin. The final step was the application of hydrating skincare products. Besides feeling completely relaxed, my skin was glowing, radiant and even slightly lifted from the massage techniques and skin tech that was used. Be sure to check out the Story Highlights “Ciel Spa” on my Instagram for videos of the facial!

 

Glen Ivy Hot Springs Spa

“While we can’t change our genes, we can alter our lifestyle to protect the longevity of our skin, body and mind.”

– Dr. Claudia Aguirre

Just 2 hours away from LA in the desert landscape of Corona, Glen Ivy Hot Springs is a wellness enthusiast’s ultimate playground built around mineral hot springs and their incredible health benefits. It’s been around for over 150 years but it has certainly evolved over time, including in recent years to cater to today’s eco-friendly luxury seeker. With its 19 different pools, mineral hot springs, exceptional spa treatments, gourmet cuisine, Scandinavian-inspired Starbucks-serving cafe. cocktail bar and the one-of-a-kind Club Mud and Grotto, Glen Ivy has all the makings for an epic spa day with a loved one or friends.

Last month, Glen Ivy celebrated the new skincare line /skin regimen/ (launched Feb 2018) at their spa and invited bloggers and influencers to learn more about the science behind the products, enjoy the facilities and experience the line firsthand with an Urban Longevity /skin regimen/ facial. Dr. Claudie Aguirre spoke about the

  • Effect of psychological stress on skin
  • The psychological power behind touch and music
  • DNA only being a factor not a determinant in how we age (we are not locked into our DNA)
  • and other skincare science topics.

The Urban Longevity /skin regimen/ Facial Review

This expertly designed facial is for stressed skin or skin showing the first signs of aging. It is customizable to correct dullness, dehydration and expression wrinkles, it deeply renews the skin and leaves it glowing and protected.

The spa has a beautiful entrance where /skin regimen/ products, Jane Iredale, NuFace skin tech devices, COOLA and other products are displayed and several treatment rooms. The facialist began with aromatherapy then proceeded to cleanse the skin. As it was a mini-facial there was no steaming involved. She used a 16% acid peel mask which felt very tingly and included a massage session using a Qigong and Rolling Roulage technique with her fingers, which felt like she was rolling my skin continuously. It also included  Macro Waves Sound, which uses both natural and synthetic sounds that help the mind detach, and a shoulder and upper back massage to provide a deep relaxation effect as the mask sat. Finally, the mask was wiped off and /skin regimen/ MicroAlgae Essence and Jane Iredale BB Cream SPF 15 was applied. My skin looked brighter and luminous, though I’m sure with the full facial you would reap even more benefits. The facialist also advised to reapply sunblock every hour not every few hours when in the sun.

Sole Focus Massage Review

This indulgent foot massage uses a technique called Zone Theory which stimulates points on the feet that improve circulation, stimulate mental calm and relieve physical tension throughout the body. 50 minutes felt like 5 with my massage therapist using her expert fingers to knead, rub, pull, and tap her way into the souls of my feet. If I get a massage I usually go for a full body one, but there’s something interesting about the Traditional Chinese Medicine philosophy that the foot is connected to everything in the body. Perhaps there’s some truth in this as I still felt relaxed and like I was walking on clouds after.

Glen Ivy Hot Springs Review

I’m not even sure where to begin, but Glen Ivy is simply beautiful- it’s like a tropical oasis wonderland with every kind of amenity you would desire. Need a pool filled with red clay mud? Check. Need a pool with a panoramic view? Check. Want to lie in a pool that’s basically a giant Epsom salt bath? Check. Healthy cocktail during the day? No judgement. Healthy cuisine crafted by an executive chef? Check. I could go on and on. It truly is an adult playground and an all day affair. I don’t believe a day here is complete without complementing it with one of their spa treatments. Can it really be a spa day without some sort of massage? To give you a better idea of all that Glen Ivy has to offer, here are the deets:

  • 19 mineral baths and pools
  • Club Mud (Californai red clay pool)
  • Women’s Bathhouse with our own indoor pool
  • 2 stylish saunas
  • Ivy Kitchen serving healthy, Mexi-Cali with a coastal twist and farm-to-table philosophy
  • Bar & smoothie café
  • Spa treatments

 

About /skin regimen/ skincare science-focused line for the stressed out urbanite

I wanted to wait to until I had tried out the /skin regimen/ products we were sent home with so I could share my experience. Please note I’ve only used these for about a week so these are merely my first impressions and not a real review. This is not an organic line, but takes a natural approach with zero synthetic fragrance, silicones, animal derivatives, artificial colorants, mineral oils and parabens. /skin regimen/ was designed for the urban-dweller living a fast-paced and stressful lifestyle. This kind of lifestyle alters the skin’s normal cellular processes, particularly DNA methylation, glycation, oxidation and inflammation, contributing to cellular breakdown and eventually hindering skin health, even in biologically young skin. The /skin regimen/ products target the most common stress-related signs – dehydration, city-gray skin, wrinkles and imperfections using their signature Longevity Complex™ an exclusive mix of organic superfood extracts and a high-tech molecule, counteracting the effects of stress and aging accelerators. It contains the anti-inflammatory Wild Indigo, modulating excess cortisol and boosting beta-endorphins, Maqui Berry with powerful antioxidants anthocyanins, and anti-glycation Spinach and Carnosine, a dipeptide. Spinach, thanks to its folic acid content, also promotes a correct DNA methylation.

MicroAlgae Essence Iluminating Lotion

This is definitely more of an essence and a thick toner than a lotion. It gives a nice glow to skin and I use it underneath my serum and moisturizer, but as far as “illuminating” it does not contain any shimmer or mica. This has to be my favorite product out of the three I tried. It gives a major boost of hydration to my dry skin and has an invigorating scent that reminds me of cinnamon. The essence is concentrated with unicellular micro-algae and their Longevity Complex to recharge the skin and maintain optimal hydration.

Tulsi Booster

This is a super lightweight concentrated oil featuring Tulsi, an adaptogenic ingredient used in Ayurvedic medicine to promote antioxidant activity and is designed for particularly dry and depleted skin. It feels almost like a serum than an oil, provides lasting hydration and I love that it incorporates Ayurveda. The scent is the same as the MicroAlgae Essence- a spicy cinnamon like scent.

/night detox

This is another very interesting product – you leave it on overnight rather than washing it off after it dries and it works to detoxify the skin from accumulated pollution. It contains Gluconolactone and alpha-glucan yeast to boost the skin’s ability to eliminate the toxins accumulated during the day. The mask has a balm-like texture and a beautiful natural scent I can’t quite put my finger on. My skin feels softer and looks clearer and significantly more toned the next morning.

Thank you Glen Ivy Hot Springs and /skin regimen/ for this unforgettable experience!

 

 

The OBL Mother’s Day Gift Guide

With Mother’s Day fast approaching I’ve decided to whip up some gift inspiration based on what I would actually get my own mom. In reality I haven’t decided on anything yet! My mom is super picky about her beauty products so I’m not about to waste a bunch of money on a gift she won’t use. But don’t be like me and get to it!

Beauty Food Basket (supplements & superfood chocolates)

Beauty products are great but supplements take health into consideration as well as promote beauty from the inside out. Put together a customized “beauty food care basket” and wrap it up with a pretty bow tie. Some products that would be great to include are:

  • HUM Nutrition Hair Sweet Hair Gummies (love these and it’s like eating candy everyday)
  • Vital Proteins Beauty Collgen- Strawberry Lemon
  • Addictive Wellness Beauty Superfood Chocolate
    • This is a Vegan, Paleo, and Keto Friendly food. Ingredients: Cacao Paste*∆, Cacao Butter*∆, Birch Xylitol, Lucuma*∆, Mucuna, Tremella Mushroom*, Horsetail*, Chaga Mushroom, Stevia (Reb-A)*, Himalayan Salt
      *=Certified Organic     ∆=Raw
  • Pearl Butter Adaptogenic Beauty Butter (code OBL15 saves 15%-I’m not affiliated)
    • Collagen-boosting butter with activated pearl (Cleopatra’s beauty secret) and shavegrass (one of the richest plant sources of silica) for glowing, lit-from-within skin. The cherry on top? It’s pink. All Ingredients:  Raw Organic Coconut, PearlShavegrassPitaya
  • HUM Nutrition Red Carpet for glowing skin & healthy hair
  • The Beauty Chef GLOW Inner Beauty Powder
    • GLOW ADVANCED, a new and improved bio-fermented super-food beauty blend with more antioxidants, more minerals, more vitamins and extra probiotics designed to improve gut health and enhance the skin from the inside out.
    • Ingredients: Bio-fermented Nutrient Blend with Flora Culture™ (mung beans*, brown rice*, lentils*, chickpeas*, linseed*, maqui berry*, queen garnet plum, buckwheat*, hulled millet*, Dunaliella salina*, agave*, molasses*, quinoa*, chia seeds*, pepitas*, sunflower seeds*, lemon juice, green tea powder*, ginger*, turmeric*), anthocyanins from grape skins, natural wild berry flavour, Dunaliella salina*, citric acid, Saccharomyces boulardii, stevia leaf extract, zinc ascorbate. *Organic Ingredients Fermented with probiotic strains: Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. delbreuckii, L. casei, L. bulgaricus, L. caucasicus, L. fermenti, L. plantarum, L. brevis, L. helevictus, L. lactis, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Saccharomyces boulardii and Saccharomyces cerevisiae
  • The Beauty Chef Holiday Boost Kit
    • Containing 3 x 100ml Inner Beauty Boosts, each specifically formulated to address gut health and specific skin concerns
    • Ingredients: Bio-fermented Nutrient Blend with Flora Culture™ (mung beans*, brown rice*, lentils*, chick peas*, linseed*, maqui berry*, queen garnet plum, buckwheat*, hulled millet*, Dunaliella salina*, agave*, molasses*, quinoa*, chia seeds*, pepitas*, sunflower seeds*, lemon juice, green tea powder*, ginger*, turmeric*), anthocyanins from grape skins, natural wild berry flavour, Dunaliella salina*, citric acid, Saccharomyces boulardii, stevia leaf extract, zinc ascorbate. *Organic Ingredients
  • Sun Potion’s He Shou Wu
    • He Shou Wu is a traditional Taoist Herb & Jing Tonic that has a history of use as a longevity, anti-aging, blood-building, beauty, & rejuvenation food. Regular consumption of this herb may do the following: tonify and nourish the blood, hair, skin, nervous system, sexual center, shen (Spirit), and Jing (primary essence/life force).
  • Sun Potion Tocos (I LOVE this one! It is amazing for skin health and tastes so delicious on its own and adds creaminess to any drink)
    • Tocos is considered the “Ultimate Skin Food”. It is an incredible superfood and creamy addition to any healthy recipe. It is a Bio-Available Source of Vitamins D & E that may Promote Healthy Skin and Connective Tissues and Facilitate the removal of toxins from the body.

FLOWERS

This is a given and should be in addition to whatever you’re getting her. Gilt City is offering great deals on flowers with Bouqs and Enjoy Flowers. Take an extra 20% off your order with code WELCOMEBACK.

candles

I really enjoy the natural and nontoxic Lite+Cycle candles which aren’t made with toxic paraffin wax and blended right in Los Angeles. MADE WITH: 100% pure essential oil fragrances, American-grown soy wax, and a cotton wick WITHOUT: paraffin, dyes, lead, animal by-products, or synthetic fragrances. The underside of the gold lid is designed with a custom pattern that creates a textured surface for igniting a strike-anywhere match. 65 hour burning time. TIP: Sign up for their newsletter to receive 20% off.

NUFACE TRINITY FACIAL TONING DEVICE

Get your mom to start using skin technology early! The earlier the better so she can age gracefuly into her 60s and beyond. I personally try to use mine at least once every few days and I feel like it will make a difference down the line. The NuFace is multi-solution facial toning device is FDA-cleared, clinically-tested, and consumer reviewed for improved facial contour, skin tone, and wrinkle reduction to give you a more radiant, younger looking appearance.

  • Natural, non-invasive facial-lift using microcurrent technology
  • Visible results that are long-lasting with continued use
  • Easy to use in as little as 5-minutes a day and travel ready

This device costs a hefty $325 so if you’re strapped consider the refreshed Mini version at $179.

spa day

Treat your mom to a pampering spa day or get her a gift card for a treatment.

best of green beauty box.

And if you really want to give mom the gift of organic beauty, The Detox Market has a fantastic Best of Green Beauty box set with $310+ worth of luxury products for only $149. Includes

  • ODACITÉ Green Ceremony Cleanser | full size 5 oz | $55 value
  • JOSH ROSEBROOK Hydrating Accelerator | travel size 2 oz | $20 value
  • MV SKINCARE Rose Soothing and Protective Moisturizer | full size 2.4 oz | $135 value
  • THE BEAUTY CHEF Collagen Inner Beauty Boost | travel size 3.38 oz | $16 value
  • RMS BEAUTY Vintage Cake Liner | full size | $24 value
  • LILY LOLO Natural Vegan Mascara | full size | $20 value
  • SOAPWALLA Sensitive Skin Deodorant Cream | full size | $16 value
  • RAHUA Shampoo + Conditioner | travel size set | $16.50 value
  • DAVIDS Natural Toothpaste | full size | $7.95 value

BEAUTY SUBSCRIPTION BOX (LUXURY)

Bi-monthly eco-luxury beauty box Boxwalla is only getting better and better so I have to recommend it. With previous boxes including high-end organic brands MUN Skincare, Twelve Beauty, Earthwise Beauty and June’s box featuring MOSS Skincare I’m sure mom is going to enjoy every box. Each box usually has a value of over $200 in my experience and costs $49.95 every other month. You can also cancel at anytime, but I’m sure you’re going to want to just change the address and re-direct the packages to your home instead.

Natural Alternatives to Vaseline

Why put a byproduct of the petroleum industry on your skin when there are safer, better natural alternatives available? There are plenty of articles floating on web on just how toxic petroleum jelly is (some insist it can cause cancer due to contamination with Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHS)) if you do a quick Google search. We’re no longer in the 19th century people (it’s the 21st for pete’s sake) and there are gorgeous products ranging from affordable to luxury made by eco-conscious and passionate brands on a mission. These are all multi-purpose balms or salves using all-natural and organic formulations designed to be a cure-all for cuts, bruises, scrapes, rashes and dryness.
Listed from lowest to highest price:

The Seaweed Bath Co Review (Earth Day Sale)

This post was kindly sponsored by The Seaweed Bath Co.

(Earth Day Promotion happening until Apr 22, 2018: Code EARTHDAY)

Founded in 2010 by Adam and Allison, The Seaweed Bath Co harnesses the power of sustainably hand-harvested certified organic seaweed off the coast of Maine to create proven, effective formulas that naturally detoxify, replenish, and protect skin and hair. They offer a wide range of face, body and haircare products and are widely available on-line and in-store (Target and Whole Foods stores, Amazon, iHerb, Thrive Market and more). They sent me a wide variety of their skin and bodycare products to try and share my thoughts.

Body Creams (Vegan & Gluten Free) $12.99

Let’s start with the Firming Detox Cream with antioxidant-rich Green Coffee Bean Extract and Hyaluronic Acid. It has a sweet citrus scent and I do feel a tightening sensation on my skin when I apply this compared to their other regular body creams. I wouldn’t expect any crazy skin transforming products from a product that costs less than $15 though obviously – only lasers can do that.

The body creams all have a very creamy thick consistency, aborb quickly and don’t leave any oil residue or feeling. The scent is strong (except the unscented one) but not overpowering and all are very pleasant. My favorite is the lavender because it’s so effective at calming my senses before sleep. The eucalyptus is uplifting and if you don’t want any scent at all they offer an unscented version. The tube is large and will last you a good few months at least.

  • Nutrient-rich bladderwrack seaweed detoxifies, hydrates and replenishes skin.
  • Hyaluronic acid locks in moisture while strengthening the skin’s natural barrier.
  • Argan oil, rich in vitamin E and essential fatty acids, naturally comforts dry, troubled skin.
  • Shea butter and aloe vera hydrate and soften skin.

Refresh Purifying Detox Body Wash (Vegan) $14.99

I must say I fell in love with this Refresh Purifying Detox Body Wash instantly. Highly nourishing with Coconut Oil, Spriulina, and Bladderwack Seaweed, it smells like an orange creamsicle, but a sophisticated one! It’s light, lathers well and comes in an hefty sized bottle.

  • Orange, Eucalyptus & Cedar essential oil blend.
  • Best for those who want a daily wash that cleans, detoxifies and nourishes skin.
  • Organic, sustainably-harvested bladderwrack seaweed with 65+ vitamins and minerals naturally detoxifies and promotes skin elasticity.
  • Antioxidant-rich green coffee bean extract helps to detoxify and protect the skin against damaging free radicals.
  • Mineral-rich French clay helps to purify skin and wash away toxins and impurities.
  • Spirulina nourishes with Vitamins B1, B2, B3, copper, iron, magnesium, potassium and amino acids.

They offer 7 different scents of body washes including Citrus Vanilla, Lavender, Eucalyptus and more.

Purifying Gel Cleanser (now sold at Target) $16.99

This is a super gentle, light gel cleanser – the consistency is almost serum like – and contains their AlgaDermTM Complex, a proprietary  ingredient, with Marine Tri-Peptide to fight free radicals and support skin’s natural collagen production. Because this is such a gentle and hydrating cleanser I feel it would be ideal for sensitive and dry skin. I also used  this as a 2nd cleansing step after removing my makeup with a cleansing oil or face wipe. The cleanser along with the rest of the products in their facial care line all have the same scent and I can’t quite put my finger on it. It’s a refreshing ocean scent is how I can best describe it. For full disclosure, please note that they do use chemical preservatives if these are ingredients you’re avoiding.

The star ingredient in their facial care line is Bladderwack Seaweed and its benefits include:

  • Nutrient rich with 65+ vitamins, minerals and amino acids to rejuvenate to skin and hair
  • Detoxifying: Iodine levels in bladderwrack seaweed help the skin’s natural detoxification process to flush environmental toxins and heavy metals
  • Anti-inflammatory: Fucoidan and phlorotannin, two bioactives in bladderwrack seaweed, have been shown in numerous studies to reduce redness and irritation in inflamed skin
  • Moisturizing: An abundance of amino acids help to increase hydration and improve skin elasticity, which reduces the signs of aging
  • Conditioning: Vitamins A, Beta-Carotene, B1, B12, C, E and K naturally condition and promote healthy hair
  • Smoothing: Increases microcirculation to aid the body in shedding excess fluids to reduce the appearance of cellulite

Ingredients

Aqua (Water), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Organic), Decyl Glucoside, Laurel Glucoside, Propanediol, Xanthan Gum, AlgaDermTM Complex (Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Laminaria Digitata Powder (Brown Seaweed), Codium Fragile Extract (Green Seaweed), Porphyridium Cruentum Exsuded Culture Medium (Red Seaweed)), Fucus Vesiculosus Powder (Organic Bladderwrack Seaweed), (Marine) Tripeptide 29, Glyceryl Oleate, Coco-Glucoside, Phenoxyethanol, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Potassium Sorbate, 100% Natural Fragrance, Leuconostoc / Radish Root Ferment Filtrate.

Purifying Micro Scrub $16.99

This creamy scrub is a cleaner and safer alternative to the popular St. Ives Apricot Scrub which contains particles that are too abrasive for the skin and may cause tiny tears leading to irritation and possible infection. It contains super fine Eco-Cert voclanic particles sourced from Spain and provides a very gentle exfoliation. It also has a strong cooling effect on the skin.

Ingredients

Aqua (Water), Stearic Acid, Perlite (Volcanic Minerals), Sodium Stearate, Glycerin, Menthyl Lactate, Phenoxyethanol, Polyclyceryl-3 Diisostearate, AlgaDermTM Complex (Laminaria Digitata (Brown Seaweed) Extract, Porphyridium Cruentum Exsuded Culture Medium (Red Seaweed), Codium Fragile (Green Seaweed) Extract, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)), (Marine) Tripeptide 29, Potassium Sorbate, Fucus Vesiculosus (Organic Bladderwrack Seaweed) Powder, Sodium Benzoate, 100% Natural Fragrance, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Potassium Hydroxide, Agar, Leuconistic/ Radish Root Ferment Filtrate.

Restoring Marine Night Therapy $24.99

This night cream, which can also be used during the day for very dry skin, is a thick and emollient cream that I found very moisturizing. Though it’s a heavy cream, I found it absorbd quickly and didn’t leave a greasy or film-like feeling. At less than $25 it’s also an accessible and affordable option for those who want a cleaner night cream that is still quality. It comes in a beautiful glass jar which is a plus. There’s also no essential oils in this and has Niacinamide as the 4th ingredient as well as their seaweed complex which makes it great for sensitive skin. Niacinamide also boosts the immunity of your skin, improves redness, reduces fine lines and fights dullness.

Ingredients

Aqua (Water), Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)*, Glycerin, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Sucrose Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Laminaria Digitata (Brown Seaweed) Extract*, Porphyridium Cruentum Exsuded Culture Medium (Red Seaweed)*, Codium Fragile (Green Seaweed) Extract*, (Marine) Tripeptide 29, Sodium Benzoate, Fucus Vesiculosus (Organic Bladderwrack Seaweed) Powder, Xantham Gum, Potassium Sorbate, 100% Natural Fragrance, Citric Acid, Leuconistic / Radish Root Ferment Filtrate. *AlgaDermTM Complex

Restore + Protect Day Cream $19.99

This lightweight moisturizer absorbs almost instantly and provides a decent amount of hydration. I was not a fan of the texture/consistency of the cream as I prefer a more silky lotion-like one. Very similar in ingredients to the night cream, it provides the benefits of its combination of three types of seaweed and Vitamin B3 as well as marine tri-peptides.

Ingredients

Aqua (Water), Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)*, Sucrose Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Codium Fragile (Green Seaweed) Extract*, Laminaria Digitata (Brown Seaweed) Extract*, Porphyridium Cruentum Exsuded Culture Medium (Red Seaweed)*, (Marine) Tripeptide 29, Fucus Vesiculosus (Organic Bladderwrack Seaweed) Powder, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Benzoate, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, Leuconistic / Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, 100% Natural Fragrance. *AlgaDermTM Complex

 

Exfoliating Detox Body Soap (Vegan) $7.99

If you like coffee scents and body soaps, this bar was made for you. I’m not a fan of body soaps mainly because they get messy and awkward to place in the shower, but I enjoyed using this one specifically because of its delicious coffee scent and exfoliating effects from the coffee bits. At first it doesn’t look like it, but once you’ve used some of the product, the exposed coffee pieces are quite coarse so you get a legitimate exfoliation session with each use of these bars.

  • Antioxidant-rich Arabica coffee gently exfoliates and improves the texture skin.
  • Cinnamon activates skin cells and increases skin elasticity.
  • Hawaiian kukui oil, coconut oil, olive oil and sunflower oil hydrate and nourish skin.
  • Charcoal powder draws out and washes away dirt, toxins and impurities on the skin

Purifying Detox Facial Soap (Vegan) $7.99

This unscented bar is made with Charcoal, Volcanic Ash, Green Tea Extract and hero ingredient Bladderwack Seaweed to gently detoxify skin and remove dirt and grime. Again, I’m not an avid face bar user (it is not recommended for dry skin) but I liked the unusual ingredients in this bar and found it gave my skin a refreshed sensation.

Ingredients: Sodium Palmate, Sodium Palm Kernelate, Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Unrefined Shea) Butter, Organic Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack Seaweed), Volcanic Ash, Volcanic Sand, Charcoal Powder, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Sodium Gluconate, Caffeine.

Firm & Lift Treatment Mask $5.99

I tried this mask out twice and felt it did a great job at giving my skin a major boost of hydration. As for firming and lifting I didn’t see anything noticeable but nor did I expect to. These are also not skin concerns of mine,  but hydration definitely is. It contains Aloe Leaf Juice, Hyaluronic Acid, Niacinamide, Seaweed Extracts as well as AlgaDermTM Complex, their proprietary, clinically proven ingredient, with Marine Tri-Peptide to fight free radicals and support skin’s natural collagen – fantastic ingredients for hydrated and healthy skin.

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice, Copper DNA, Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid), Glycosyl Trehalose, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)*, Hydrogenated Starch Hydrolysate, Laminaria Hyperborea (Brown Seaweed) Extract*, Porphyridium Cruentum Culture Conditioned Media (Red Seaweed)*, Chlorella Vulgaris (Green Seaweed) Extract*, Tripeptide 29, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Citrus Aurantium Flower Oil, Potassium Sorbate, Xanthan Gum, Dehydroacetic Acid, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Caprylyl Glycol, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Polysorbate 20, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Peel Oil Expressed (Orange Oil). *AlgaDermTM Complex

 

How I Do Skincare for Long Flights

My skin really takes a hit after a 15 hour flight and there’s almost no avoiding it. I almost always suffer from breakouts and dull skin for several days while having to adjust my biological clock. A post-flight facial really helps but I can’t always afford it. I try to do my best to keep my skin clean and hydrated on these flights where the air is literally drier than the Sahara desert.

Here’s my typical  in-flight routine:

  1. Makeup remover wipe: this cleanses my skin of airport grossness, sweat from running to catch flights and bacteria in general. Currently I’m using Derma E’s face wipes. Some other ones I enjoy are: Acure & Kaia Naturals
  2. Face Mist: Currently I’m using Earthwise Beauty Cistus & Moonlight (affiliate code OBL saves)
  3. Face Serum: Currently I’m using a variety of serums and like to layer them for ultimate hydration. Your best serum is going to be more effective than your best moisturizer any day. These days I’m using Luzern Labs Firming Collagen Booster & OSEA’s Hyaluronic Sea Serum.
  4. Face Mask: I usually try to avoid sheet masks if I’m on a full flight so I don’t freak out the person sitting next to me. During shoulder season I have entire rows to myself so I don’t feel self-conscious using them. Currently I’m enjoying Orgaid’s Organic Sheet Masks. Otherwise I’ll use a less conspicuous hydrating mask like Odacités Deep Hydration Mask or Kypris’ Glow Philtre.
  5. Remove mask and apply Face Moisturizer & Oil: The sheet mask only lasts about half an hour so once I remove that I apply a face moisturizer and then an oil. This will keep my face hydrated throughout the flight. I always sleep as much as possible during a long haul flight to prevent exhaustion and recover quickly.
  6. SPF at the end of the flight: When the flight is about to land the stewardess forces you to lift up your window and the UV rays are super strong at this kind of altitude so I make sure to apply a good amount of SPF when I wake up. By the end of the flight there’s only slight residue left from my skincare routine and I don’t remove it. Currently I’m using Coola’s Tinted BB Cream SPF 30 and Sport SPF 50 Face sunscreen. I also love the Earthwise Beauty Farizad’s Veil and it doesn’t count as a liquid on carry-ons which is a plus.

A few other steps I take to ensure my skin doesn’t go berserk:

  • After going through the security check and before boarding I always try to buy 1 or 2 water bottles if I’m not rushing to make my connection.
  • I am extra careful not to touch my face
  • Natural hand sanitizer (currently using Olika’s hand sanitizer)

An Holistic Facial Experience at Kosha Spa

I was invited to try a holistic facial at the brand new Kosha Spa in Toluca Lake opened by Anastasia in September 2017 and I happened to be in California so of course I was more than excited to experience one for the first time. More than just a regular facial, a holistic one takes your entire body’s well-being into account according to Anastasia. Rather than just treating skin concerns with products, she’ll try and understand your lifestyle to see what ways you can improve your skin through adjusting your daily habits. A holistic facial also incorporates various alternative therapies like sound healing, aromatherapy and Chinese pressure points Read more

New Organic Lipsticks & Glosses Swatches

Hey loves so I figured since I have a pretty substantial collection of lip products I should forever cement their presence on the internet before they get used up. These photos are not touched up for the most accurate representation. I hope you find it useful at some point!

NU EVOLUTION LIPSTICK
SHADE: ALLURE
AFFILIATE DISCOUT CODE: ORGANICBEAUTYLOVER (saves 15% sitewide)
SHOP HERE

My thoughts: I’ve reviewed these before (keyword search: evolution) but these are fantastic lipsticks and I have had great feedback from those of you who’ve purchased their lipsticks based on my rec. They’re creamy but stay put, long lasting with touch ups needed when you eat/drink and don’t dry out your lips. For review and swatches of their line click here.

Read more

What I Wish I Could Tell my 20 year old self

Don’t believe or trust in what people say or promise whether it’s a loved one or a boss. People’s feelings and agendas change and they will do what’s best for themselves, just as you would. What someone said 3 months ago or 3 weeks ago doesn’t mean it still stands.

Don’t waste your time on meaningless friendships. Spend the time you’d normally be wasting with them with yourself instead and improving yourself, whether that’s learning new skills, gaining knowledge, working on your fitness goals or having a self-pampering session. Investing time and energy in yourself is a much better use of your time.

Never expect anything from anyone. No one’s going to hand you anything just because you feel you deserve it so obviously  they should feel the same way. Ask for what you want even if you’re afraid to. If it’s a no it’s a no but if it’s a yes then that would be pretty awesome. Don’t expect, demand.

Don’t assume, always double check. People don’t think the same way you do nor are they mind readers.

Listen and observe more than you talk

NU EVOLUTION Makeup Review and Swatches

NU Evolution is one of the cleanest most high-performing makeup brands on the market today and even after a few years of first reviewing the line (see blog post of NU’s foundation and swatches  here) it still remains one of my few top favorite brands. Not that it matters but NU is also one of Emma Watson’s “go to” brands according to Eluxe Magazine. Besides healthy ingredients and high performance, this brand also focuses on color selection, innovative formulas and packaging that reflects the two founders Sandra and Nadine’s passion for high fashion, beauty
and pop culture.

As always, affiliate code OBL saves 15% at checkout. Worldwide shipping

Read more

SIBU Sea Buckthorn Beauty Review

SIBU is a line of skincare & supplement products featuring Himalayan Sea Buckthorn Berries as its star ingredient. According to SIBU, this berry has 90 bioactive compounds, contains an unsurpassed source of Omegas 3, 6, and 9, and is the world’s richest source of the elusive essential fatty acid, Omega-7, a fatty acid vital to collagen production and healthy skin, hair and nails. Traditionally Sea buckthorn berry is used for:

Read more