Entries Tagged as 'nails'

August 22, 2014

how clean are these 15 nail polishes in my collection?

I have a confession to make: I’m a nail polish junkie (as evidenced by my ridiculous nail polish collection).

But, after sharing a picture of a fresh mani/pedi the other day and feeling good about using three- and five-free polishes, a dear IG follower got me thinking about just how clean some nail polish brands really are.

3-free and 5-free nontoxic nail polishes

So, I thought I’d dedicate a post to getting YOUR candid feedback on 1) which nail polish brands you choose to keep in your collection, and 2) which ones aren’t worth your time or money.

Though I only have a few brands of three-free polishes in my collection, the bulk of my collection is China Glaze (three-free), OPI (three-free) and Zoya (five-free).

My obsession with China Glaze and OPI run deep, as these are the brands I used long before going green and caring about the numbers three and five.

I share this point of view that, hey, nail polish just isn’t natural, so if I’m going to use it, I’m going to use what I like.

But I also prefer to support smaller companies and niche brands that are showing me who they really are (ya know, some faces behind a brand name!) and the causes they support.

Maybe I’m just sucker for new nail polish to add to my collection.

Here’s the categories the 15 different brands in my collection file into — I suppose I’m in the right direction.


  • Butter London
  • China Glaze
  • Essie
  • OPI
  • Sephora by OPI


  • AILA
  • Chanel
  • Lakur
  • LVX
  • Mineral Fusion
  • NCLA
  • Sheswai
  • Sparitual
  • Treat Collection
  • Zoya

So, questions for you to answer in the comments section:

Do you go three-free or five free? What about cruelty-free? What brands do you prefer (because, ya know, even some drugstore brands are three- or five-free!)?


November 11, 2013

beauty scoop | acure organics 100% certified organic argan oil

Ahhh, argan oil.

This “liquid gold” oil is most people’s gateway oil. Argan oil captured the market’s attention more than five years ago and is still selling strong — but this popularity spawns opportunities for greenwashing and knockoffs.

That’s where certification and a trustworthy brand makes all the difference.

acure organics argan oil

{Acure Organics sent me a sample of its 100% Certified Organic Argan Oil for review. It retails for $14.99 for a 1-fluid ounce glass dropper bottle.}

Enter Acure Organics. Acure’s 100% Certified Organic Argan Oil has been holding strong on my favorites page since I created it (and I’ll be updating it soon), and for good reason.

Acure Organics’ 100% Certified Organic Argan Oil is USDA-certified organic, extremely accessible at most health food stores and won’t break the bank at $14.99.

It’s got that beautiful, sweet-yet-nutty smell that only pure, unadulterated argan oil delivers and a striking golden color that looks great on the vanity.

This is the oil that I constantly recommend to new-to-naturals friends and coworkers because it’s so approachable and it’s the real deal; that USDA Organic certification gets “light green” people’s attention as they make the switch to cleaner products.

acure organics argan oil

The high amount of vitamin E and essential fatty acids in argan oil works wonders on restoring hydration from head to toe.

I love Acure Organics’ 100% Certified Organic Argan Oil as a hair/scalp treatment, a nail/cuticle soother, an oil cleanser, an overnight facial hydration treatment and an all-over body moisturizer.

Most pure argan oils are going to work just fine in all of these ways, but what makes me come back to Acure’s 100% Certified Organic Argan Oil is the pricepoint.

I don’t feel stingy bad about slathering it on head to toe because I know it’s something I can easily restock as a staple item.

(Besides, you really don’t need to be heavy-handed with argan oil because it’s so thick — start small and work your way up if you feel you need more!)

No matter how popular argan oil may get thanks to an over-saturated market of companies trying to cash in on its appeal, only a few companies will continue to stand out as trusted argan oil suppliers.

Those companies will continue to hold USDA organic certification, buy from small women’s cooperatives in Morocco and ensure sustainable harvesting of the Argan tree.

Acure Organics is definitely one of those companies.

What argan oils do you use? Have you tried anything from Acure Organics? Tell me in the comments section!


May 24, 2013

beauty scoop | olie biologique 100% usda certified organic argan oil

When people tell me they love their (overpriced, overmarketed) “Moroccan oil,” it takes every bit of my soul to keep from screaming, “Quit wasting your money on those fakes!”

In a sneaky effort to get people to abandon the popular, greenwashed products on the market, I appeal to their common sense when I recommend pure argan oil for their hair, skin and nails.

  • “You can use this on your hair as a styling aid or overnight treatment.”
  • “I like to pat this onto my face in the morning and throughout the day.”
  • “This stuff keeps my cuticles from looking ragged.”
  • “It’s the perfect post-shower body oil.”

If I can get them to see the light with these multipurpose uses, then I know I can get them over the perceived price hump of trying a delicious, 100% USDA-certified organic argan oil from a favorite company (and company founder!), Olie Biologique.

olie biologique 100% usda certified organic argan oil

{Olie Biologique sent me a sample of its 100% USDA Certified Organic Argan Oil for review. It retails for $40 for a 1.7-ounce black glass dropper bottle.}

So, we’re clear on the fact that argan oil is pretty much everywhere. But what makes an argan oil special? Is it the chic packaging? The online boutique experience? The faintly nutty smell?

All of those things factor into the appeal, but for me, what sets Olie Biologique’s 100% USDA Certified Organic Argan Oil apart is its purity.

Olie is straight up with you in its product details on the site:

“100% Certification means we don’t add anything to this pure, organically produced product. You get 100% non-processed, chemical-free, organic argan oil of the highest quality.

Embodying the “less is more” concept, Olie Biologique’s argan oil makes a statement in so many ways. I love the way it looks on my vanity, but more importantly, I love the way it feels on my hair, skin and nails.

Olie’s argan oil doesn’t leave an oily residue on your skin, instead drying to a perfectly moisturized finish. When used as a hair styling aid, it gives a glossed, not an oil-slicked, look to your mane.

I also love knowing that Olie Bioloqique has put its product to the test and achieved the coveted USDA organic seal, which is still uncommon in natural beauty products today. That extra effort speaks to me when it comes to cutting through the marketing mess of argan oils.

It also gives me a little perk to speak of when convincing people to ditch the popular, diluted argan oil mixes on the market and truly get what they’re paying for — pure product, not packaging and dirty ingredients.

What are some of your favorite argan oils? Have you tried anything from Olie Biologique? Tell me in the comments section!


April 22, 2013

beauty secrets | how to detox your beauty bag

Though it’s Earth Day everyday on kimberlyloc.com, for those who are just toe-deep into the green movement, I’m using today’s post as an intro to cleaner beauty and a refresher for the rest of us as to why it’s so important to take the leap when it comes to detoxing your beauty bag.

While the dirty ingredients I’m mentioning in today’s post (and on TV today — tune into KCTV5 “Better Kansas City” between 9 and 10 a.m. if you’re in the area — video will be posted later!) are by no means an exhaustive list, I feel that they are the most common ones you’ll find in beauty products.

That means they’re also going go be some of the easiest to eliminate first as you clean up your routine! Below you’ll fine some affordable, easily accessible green beauty options to replace your conventional products with — you’re going to love them!

Kiss Parabens Goodbye

badger balm usda organic lip balm

{Badger Balm makes USDA organic lip balms in a variety of flavors and sizes. You can find Badger Balms at your local health food store or grocer.}

I cannot emphasize this enough: You eat your lip balms, lipsticks, glosses and other pretty stuff you put on your lips on a regular basis.

This is basically unavoidable — so be sure to choose a tasty, USDA-organic balm as your base and be smart about the ingredients in your lip colors!

(My choice? Badger Balm USDA Organic Lip Balms!)

Ingredients common in lip products (and, sheesh, so many other conventional products), are preservatives called parabens.

Parabens are used to lengthen products’ lifespans and help kill bacteria.

While that sounds noble and such, there are so many other ways to keep products shelf-stable and clean. Companies (yes, BIG companies!) are catching on and eliminating parabens, such as ethyl-, methyl-, butyl- and propylparabens.

Be wary of companies that have not yet made this switch! Profits and pure laziness from companies should not put consumers (you!) at risk for skin irritation and hormone disruption.

(Parabens can interfere with the natural cycles of the endocrine system, which regulate your body’s hormones.)

Get the Rub — Without Propylene Glycol

nourish usda organic body lotion osmia organics body oil

{Treat your skin to USDA organic body lotion for Nourish, or feed it a healthy mix of oils thanks to Osmia Organics.}

You know that your skin is your largest organ. To keep it smooth and hydrated, you slap on so much body lotion and body oil over the years — and expose your skin and bloodstream to whatever is inside your moisturizer.

That’s why it’s important to choose a healthy one that your skin and insides want to drink up.

(My choice? Nourish USDA Organic Body Lotion and Osmia Organics Body Oil Stream!)

Propylene glycol is a common ingredient in moisturizers. They’re used because they can deeply penetrate the skin and give the illusion of hydration and softness.

Unfortunately, overexposure to glycol can lead to kidney and liver damage.

While that sounds extreme and shocking, the fact that propylene glycol is used antifreeze, paint and floor wax — things you typically try not to get on your skin — should keep you even more disgusted with this cheap ingredient.

See Ya Later, Sulfates

rahua shampoo acure organics shampoo nourish body wash zum bar soap

{Hair and body care are a cinch to switch. Rahua shampoo is a luxury pick while Acure Organics is the budget-friendly buy. Nourish makes a lovely USDA organic body was, and I’m obsessed with every bar soap Kansas City company Zum makes.}

You can suds up in the shower sans sulfates.

Sodium laurel sulfate, or SLS, is the ingredient behind rich, foamy lathers we are so accustomed to in our shampoos, body washes and soaps.

However, removing the SLS and replacing it with a coconut or sustainably harvest palm oil will deliver the same suds — without exposing you to carcinogens or irritation and getting you the same squeaky-clean the way engine degreasers, car wash soaps and garage floor cleaners do (yeap, SLS is in all of those heavy-duty cleaners).

(My choice: Rahua Shampoo, Acure Organics Shampoo, Nourish Organic Body Wash, Zum Bar in Cinnamon, Zum Bar in Coffee Almond!)

When I mention carcinogens, I mean the fact that SLS has been shown to cause permanent eye damage in young animals. (Now you know why it stings so bad to get conventional shampoo in your eyes!)

No thanks.

Tell Phthalates Off

john masters organics sea salt spray aubrey organics usda organic hairspray butter london sheswai zoya nail polish

{Keep phthalate exposure to a minimum by choosing cleaner hair and nail products. I use John Masters Organics Sea Salt Spray to add volume to my crown and am experimenting with Aubrey Organics’ USDA Organics Hairspray. As for nail polish — my favorite “five free” line is Zoya, while Sheswai and butter London are quality “three free” lines. Household favorites Essie, OPI and China Glaze are also “three free.”

Phthalates are everywhere. But we really don’t need them to be.

This group of chemicals, known for their link to reproductive issues, is used to make plastics more flexible and harder to break. Phthalates are also used as solvents for other materials.

In nail polish, phthalates come in the form of dibutyl phthalate (DBP).

As a plasticizer, it’s there to add a moisturizing sheen, dissolve other cosmetic ingredients and help prevent chips and cracks.

Nail polishes have evolved, and these nasty ingredients aren’t necessary for a chip-free mani anymore!

Look for nail polishes that are at least “three free” (the “three” being dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde and toluene) to avoid this hormone-disrupting ingredient.

(Luckily, several mainstream brands have also removed these ingredients from their polishes, too.)

If you’re ready to go dark green, you can choose “five free” (the “five” being dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde, toluene, formaldehyde resin, and camphor) nail polishes to avoid additional toxins.

(I’ll dedicate a separate post to this soon!)

In hairspray, phthalates come in the form of dimethyl phthalate and are used to add texture and luster to the product.

To avoid phthalates in hairspray, which you’re at risk for inhaling and throwing your system all out of whack, choose USDA organic hair products or simple products with pared-down ingredients to get the hold, volume, texture and shine you need.

April 10, 2013

beauty secrets | spring 2013 beauty trends

Two weeks ago, I joined Lisa Holbrook, co-host of “Better Kansas City,” to talk spring beauty trends.

Now that (it seems) warmer weather and regular April showers are here to stay, I’m ready to share my favorite spring beauty trends with you on the blog.

Watch the segment below to learn my five favorite hair, makeup and nail trends for spring 2013, and read on for specific product links and recommendations to spice up your warm-weather beauty routine.


1. Matte Makeup

We’re a little obsessed with having “dewy glows,” but this season, it’s all about a polished, put-together look that is “done” without looking “made up.”

Matte mineral makeup, such as the matte line from bareMinerals, offers a flawless finish that keeps you shine-free yet allows your skin to breathe. (Check out the amazing selection of colors below!)

You can also rock the matte makeup trend on your pout. One of my favorite mainstream natural brands, Tarte, makes lovely tinted moisturizers in a matte finish — no more dry lips with matte color!

(Fiery and Lively are great picks! Tarte is also available at Beauty Brands if you’re in the KC-area.)

2. Bright Lips

In the fall we play up our lips with deep reds and burgundies; spring is all about bright pops of pink and red.

Choose shades of pink that mimic the most vibrant roses — it will appear natural, but with more bite to it!

I love the bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie glosses in Hot Shot and Smooth Talker. Tarte also makes gorgeously packaged lipsticks packed with rich shea, mango and avocado butters in an array of bold colors.

3. Nude Nails

Nail art and designs aren’t going away, but we can expect more subdued nails this spring. Think gorgeous blush, peach and mocha tones for all skin types.

My polish picks? Any neutrals from Zoya, OPI or China Glaze stay chip-free (just remember to use a great base coat and top coat, too!).

4. Colorful Eyes

We saw lots of blues and greens on the spring 2013 runways — embrace color to help your eyes stand out!

If neon blue just doesn’t appeal to you, ease into the trend with a navy eyeliner (I love Eyeko London — not totally natural, but it’s a fabulous liquid liner) or an olive eyeliner to get the look without going totally bright.

And remember: Don’t pair bright eyes with bold lips. Pick one and run with it!

5. Shining Hair

This trend is all about adding a little sparkle to your hair — be it through shine sprays or through actual jewels placed in your hair.

  • For sleek, glossy hair, use shine sprays or oils after you’ve set your hairstyle; the oils in the sprays help reflect light off your hair while moisturizing.
  • For a hint of glam without overdoing it for day or a casual night out, use jeweled ponytail holders or decorative pins to play up your hair.
  • For an all-out glam look, attach a jeweled clip or hair brooch to you ‘do.

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