Tag: cruelty free

Friends & family: “Katey, which natural shampoos and conditioners do you use?” Me: “I’m so glad you asked!”

April 8th, 2012 — 8:17pm

Without some product and a little time and focused attention, my hair is super dry and frizzy. In humid climates it expands. When I’m by the ocean or in the jungle, my hair curls right up into frizzy little ringlets and sticks out all over my head. I hope someone will remind me of this the next time I fantasize about cutting my hair to chin length again. I’ve learned that keeping the length of my hair past my shoulders is a must if I don’t want to put three ounces of product in it to weigh it down every morning.

There are so many ‘green’ hair care companies on the market today putting out great products that really do the job of cleansing and smoothing without any of the harsh chemicals that our scalps and ultimately our blood streams and water ways just don’t need. You can take your pick from shampoos that make the most of every hair type- from thin and fine, to thick and coarse, as well as conditioners made to keep colored hair looking vibrant longer and unruly hair in-check. I love the scents of all-natural hair care. I was always really turned off by the highly synthetic floral and fruit fragrances available from mainstream brands. I can smell them now a mile away.

Early on in my journey down the natural section of the shampoo and conditioner aisle,  a friend and I were discussing how unhappy we were with how our hair looked, sharing that we each felt so sad that our once silky and shiny locks were no longer so vivacious.  We had a good laugh when we simultaneously blurted out which shampoo and conditioner from our local health foods store we’d both been using for the past month- it was the same one, and we both hated the results!  I promptly switched mine up and saw a big difference. It’s really all about trying a few until you find one that’s right for your hair type. That’s what I’ve been doing for the past few years, and I will admit that on occasion, I’ll stray from the all-natural world of conditioner if I feel that my hair looks less than optimal, even after I’ve sat with coconut oil coating my tresses for an hour.  A little silicone from any one of the mainstream conditioners, and my frizz is usually back in check for weeks to come. Says a lot for the lasting power of silicone, right?! Kind of scary, kind of wonderful.

My current all-natural favorites are:

The two main things I keep in mind when evaluating which products in my beauty routine are the most important for me to keep as free from harmful chemicals as possible are:

  1. Will I be using this on a daily basis, and
  2. Will this come in contact with a large surface are of my body

Because shampoos and conditioners are first massaged into the scalp and then essentially coat the entirety of the skin (our largest organ!) as they’re rinsed off, they are at the top of my list of must-go-green items.

Next in line to try: Intelligent Nutrients, and Rahua. I’ll keep you posted! As always, if you love the products you’re using and want to share, please drop me a line.



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I love this look I did on Julianne Moore: Hot pink lip stain + redhead = FANTASTIC!

February 21st, 2012 — 11:01pm

There’s been a lot of buzz about lip stains over the past few years. I love them for times when I’m not going to be with my client, after our initial hour together, to check that her lipstick hasn’t smudged or faded. You can use them with a lip balm, allowing just their color to show, or layer a lipstick over top for increased intensity of color.

On two separate occasions last week I used a lip stain from Josie Maran called Jitterbug. Both days Julianne was wearing a black top so I thought it would be fun to brighten up the look with a great, vibrant lip color. We loved how it looked so much that we decided to use it again the next day. I love putting hot pink on a pale, pinky-skin-tone’d redhead. Jitterbug is a really intensely bright hot pink, and the beauty blog world was all a-buzz with commentary on how great she looked wearing it.

Using a lip stain requires some prep that you’re likely not used to if you normally wear a lipstick or gloss. These steps are very important, or you’ll lose both the beauty, as well as the effectiveness of the product.

  1. Gently exfoliate your lips prior to application. This should be done EVERY day (another post will follow on this because it’s so often overlooked, and really so necessary). The quick and easy way to do this is towards the end of your shower, use a washcloth, a soft toothbrush, or even the pads of your fingers to gently remove the dead, scaly skin that collects on the lips. EVERYONE should do this – men, too.  When I go to get someone ready to walk the red carpet I start our session with a lip exfoliation by handing them an organic baby wipe and having them rub it gently in small circular motions over their lips.
  2. Generously apply a NON-PETROLEUM lip balm. This is where I stand on the whole lip balm thing: petroleum and petrolatum do a great job sealing in moisture if it’s there already. However, most of us have dry lips and need to add moisture, rather than just sealing the skin. (Plus, do you know where petroleum comes from? Yuck. That’ll be for another post, as well). Choose a lip balm that’s formulated with shea butter, beeswax, honey, or any other natural oil – anything natural that will absorb and hydrate is what makes sense to me.  Don’t you notice that when you use a lip balm with a petroleum base, you have to reapply just as soon as that slick feeling goes away? Your lips deserve better!
  3.  Very important: Once the non-petroleum lip balm has had a few minutes to absorb, kiss the back of your hand, or a tissue (or give it to another set of dry lips via a kiss), and remove any trace of it.
  4.  There are two styles (in my opinion) to lip stain application.
    a. For a more natural look: Start staining the center of the lips and then fade towards the edges.
    b. For a more deliberate, constructed look, outline the lips (you can even give yourself a little extra help along the edges if you want a more full look, particularly on the cupids bow and along the top edge) and then fill in the center.
    Be careful to stay within the lines since these pigments really do stain.
  5. Finish with a lip balm that you’ll put in your pocket and reapply as needed. You can also choose to use a gloss if you want more shine.
  6. Enjoy touch-up free, kissable lips, with color that lasts for hours and hours!

Side note: I like Josie Maran’s lip stain line because the colors are intense, they’re not tested on animals, they’re paraben-free, they’re fragrance-free, and the packaging is mostly recyclable.

Side note #2: If you accidentally get the lip stain coated with lip balm it will clog up the felt tip. If this happens, gently press the tip into a slightly damp, warm wash cloth. It should do the trick.

Side note #3: The only drawback is that the few formulations I’ve tried have dried out within the tube/pen container thing pretty quickly, making them one of those items you use a few times and then return to find it too dried up to use again. Maybe there’s a trick I’m missing to bring them back to life that’s not listed on any website?


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