Entries Tagged as 'skin'

August 26, 2015

beauty scoop | mun no.11 anarose rejuvenating rose toner

Blooming with beauty, Mun’s No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner is the exfoliating toner I reach for when my skin needs a bit of gentle refinement.

mun no. 11 anarose rejuvenating rose toner

{Mun sent me a sample of its No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Toner to review, and I’ve repurchased it twice. It costs $68 for a 3.38-ounce Miron glass jar that comes with an optional spray attachment.}

As a bit of a toner addict, I like having several options for morning and evening mists.

For mornings and throughout the day, I look for moisturizing toners that prep my skin for makeup and refresh said makeup throughout the day. For evenings, I prefer exfoliating toners that deep clean while delivering moisture and prepping my skin for acne serums.

Mun’s No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner can easily be a morning or evening toner thanks to its extremely gentle and nourishing ingredients — think rose water, aloe leaf juice and moisture-binding hyaluronic acid.

But for my skin, it really shines as an evening treatment, with pore-cleansing willow bark extract and calming florals, including Bulgarian rose, jasmine and daisy extracts.

Here’s the full ingredients list:

De-ionized Water, Rose Hydrosol* (Rose Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice*, Maltodextrin, Opuntia Ficus-Indica (Prickly Pear) Stem Extract, Lycium Barbarum Fruit (Goji Berry) Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract*, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower Extract, Bellis Perennis (Daisy) Flower Extract, Xanthan Gum, Vegetable Glycerin, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzyl Alcohol. (*CERTIFIED ORGANIC)

In addition to these balancing ingredients, Mun’s No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner takes advantage of prickly pear stem extract, which is full of amino acids and antioxidants to boost radiance and resilience.

As you may remember, Mun’s hero product, the N0. 1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum, contains the vitamin E-rich prickly pear seed oil, making the rose toner a perfect companion to your well-edited skincare routine. While the serum is rich with the scent of roses, the toner has a lighter touch, keeping the olfactory experience well-designed.

Speaking of design, when Mun No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner first launched, the Miron glass had only a screw-top lid, meaning this toner was meant to be poured onto a cotton pad and gently swiped across the face and neck.

I’ll be the first to say that I fully prefer fine misting toners, but for this one in particular, because it has some gentle exfoliating properties thanks to willow bark, I actually enjoyed the ritual of using this toner with a cotton pad.

In recent months, Mun has introduced an additional spray-top to go with the toner (so you have a choice of spraying or pouring). I’ve put the spray top on mine, as pictured, but I have to say that it’s really better as a swipe-across-your-face toner.

This is because the spray tops for these violet glass jars just aren’t that great — the mists are a little too “wet” though not terribly targeted (that’s a good thing).

Perhaps the idea of spraying your face and then using a cotton round to disperse everything is the idea here? Whatever it is, it’s more on the glass company to innovate a bit with the packaging; but, having the option is nice, and it shows that Mun heard those who prefer a mist!

All in all, this is a fantastic toner that I have happily repurchased twice after receiving a complimentary bottle for review. If you’d prefer to have one go-to toner for day and night (instead of being a toner hoarder like me — I like options, OK?) Mun No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner is definitely one to consider and one I highly recommend.

If you’re ready to grab a bottle for yourself, I’ve got a discount code for you! Shop on Mun’s site and use code “kimberlylocmun” for 15% off!

You can also find Mun’s toner at The Detox Market and Integrity Botanicals as well as Spirit Beauty Lounge.

Have you tried Mun’s toner? Do you have any Miron glass toners with spray tops? If so, what do you think of them? How do you prefer to tone your skin — with sprays or with a cotton round? Tell me in the comments section!

August 21, 2015

beauty secrets | tulsi tea to support beauty from within

Topical beauty can only get us so far.

No matter how many products you use, if you aren’t supporting your beauty from within — a nutrient-dense diet and maximum hydration coupled with ample sleep and sweat — you’re doing it wrong.

Small steps can get you to that glow. One pathway to pretty is through organic herbal teas. The perfect blend can help relieve stress, protect your immune system and enchant your senses with the aromas of nature’s most beautiful herbs and flowers.

organic india tulsi tea

{Organic India sent me samples of its Tulsi tea to review. Prices range from $4.49 to $5.99 per box for 18 certified organic infusion bags.}

Lina Hanson, founder of Lina Hanson Global Beauty, told me in an interview that she loves holy basil, or tulsi tea, to supplement her daily hydration plan. Tulsi is lovingly called the “Queen of Herbs” and is held as a sacred plant in India, offering a wealth of benefits to both mind and body.

I took Lina’s recommendation to heart and searched out some of the best brands offering organic holy basil tea. Organic India came up in my search, and I was impressed at the variety — 18 different kinds! — of tulsi tea they offered.

Of course, when I saw they offered jasmine tulsi tea, it was over. Welcome to the eighth feature in my #12DaysOfJasmine series.

organic india jasmine tulsi tea

Calming chamomile and fragrant jasmine flowers join the beloved and powerful tulsi to create the most beautiful caffeine-free tea that is perfect to sip in the afternoon or evening when you need a little zen in your life.

Tulsi, a principle herb of Ayurveda, is an adaptogenic herb that can help the body better handle stress. This is wonderful for the mind, but also for the body, as more stressors in life tend to manifest on the face — breakouts, flushing, you name it.

Organic India’s Jasmine Tulsi Tea contains a blend of the three main varieties of tulsi: Rama, Krishna and Vana. Each type has a distinct taste (think medicinal, cooling and foresty), yet blended together with hints of jasmine and chamomile, you get a very soft, beautifully floral tea that is easy to integrate into your diet.

This is a tea I like to keep stashed at work to help bring my stress levels down and to bring that jasmine experience usually reserved for my personal care time at home into my office.

If I need a little bit more from my tea during the day (hi, caffeine), I boost with green tea to continue to get the antioxidants but with a tiny shot of power. (Lina also recommends this method to help get your fluids in for the day!)

Jasmine green teas are also available, and I have my eye on Organic India’s Jasmine Green Tulsi Tea — talk about packed with all the good stuff!

In addition to Organic India’s Jasmine Tulsi Tea, I’m also taken by the delicate flavor behind its Sweet Rose Tulsi Tea. There’s nothing more beautiful than a rose, and to enjoy it in this way is nothing short of indulgent.

With a strong tea collection for internal beauty support, I’d be amiss to mention that you can also use your teabags on a second or third steeping to create wonderful toning waters for various uses, such as misting your skin or mixing up powder masks. Why use just water when you can infuse your beauty masks with even more goodness?

I’m excited to be able to bring you jasmine addicts yet another way to enjoy this beautiful flower — and in the company of such powerful herbs that can help our moods and tickle our tastebuds! I’m sure there are plenty other great jasmine teas out there — have any to share? Tell me in the comments!

August 17, 2015

beauty scoop | bottega organica face balance cream

Slowly but surely, I’m taking an interest in natural face creams.

But they have to have that je ne sais quoi, which for me is some sort of creamy, oily, balmy texture with a comforting scent that makes me just have to use it.

Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream in Tulsi & Vetiver meets those requirements.

bottega organica face balance tulsi and vetiver

{Bottega Organica sent me a sample of its Face Balance to review. It costs $140 for a 1-ounce Miron glass jar.}

Holy basil, water, olive oil, beeswax, glycerin and sage form the base of Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream, resulting in an amazingly grounding scent that’s refreshing and never overpowering.

The amount of natural slip this face cream has, thanks to a generous amount of olive oil, is perfect for facial oil lovers like me who crave that familiar texture but love a good cream or balm during transition weather or to address particularly dry, fussy skin.

bottega organica face balance tulsi and vetiver

Unlike many face creams I’ve tried, which tend to be very dense, not moisturizing enough or too overly rich, Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream nails the “balance” part of its name by providing just the right amount of creaminess and light oil to relieve the skin of dryness and irritation without overly drenching it in moisture.

I enjoy using Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream at night, especially during strange weather patterns when it goes from being extremely warm to unseasonably cool (it was in the 50s the other night?!). Layered onto my skin after a deep cleansing and toning, Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream gives me just want to I need to feel like my skin is shielded from constantly changing air temperature and humidity.

If I feel like I really need it, I’ll add a layer of a single carrier oil (olive oil would go well, right?) to really seal in all the moisture. But I find I don’t always need that during this time of year. For winter, it might be the perfect solution for chapping and dry spots — a water-based cream with just enough olive oil and a light layer atop.

Here’s the full ingredients list:

Ocimum tenuiflorum (holy basil *) water, aqua (water), olea europaea (olive) fruit oil bo, cera alba (beeswax*), glycerin *, salvia officinalis (sage *) extract, echinacea purpurea (coneflower *) extract, galega officinalis (French lilac *) extract, salvia haenkei (prawn sage) extract bo, daucus carota sativa (carrot) flower/seed extract bo, salix alba (willow bark *) extract, vetiveria zizaniodes (vetiver) root oil *, cananga odorata (ylang ylang) flower oil *, boswellia carteri (frankincense) oil *, pogostemon cablin (patchouli) oil *, linalool eo, farnesol eo, benzyl benzoate eo, geraniol eo  [* certified organic herbs flowers and fruits; (bo) harvested by Bottega Organica]

Diving into the ingredients a little more, I’m excited to see a few that aren’t as popular in many green beauty lines. Think holy basil (which I love as a tea!), French lilac, wild carrots and vetiver.

Holy basil helps regulate oil production without clogging pores. This is another part of the “balance” part of this cream’s namesake. It’s also famous for its antibacterial and soothing properties, making it a perfect ingredient for acne-prone skin. Its camphorous scent provides a cooling sensation to especially irritated skin.

This pairs well with French lilac and vetiver, which have a sort of under-the-radar sexiness about them that makes the aromatherapeutic benefits of this face cream second to none. The base of holy basil is lightened with French lilac, which helps brighten the skin, and vetiver, another moody scent and ingredient that stimulates skin renewal and calming of the mind.

One of my favorite ingredients, wild carrots provide a boost in antioxidants and vitamins essential for skin repair. Anytime I’ve ever used something with wild carrot seed oil in it, my skin has always seemed to look and feel brighter and more radiant — the “glow” we are all after. Thanks, carrots.

While this is all great, the elephant in the room here is the shockingly high price of this face cream — $140 for 1 ounce.

You’re paying for expensive Miron glass packaging, yes, but also for freshly crafted formulas that are made-to-order and designed to be used within two months of opening.

That means that Bottega Organica products aren’t really something to take lightly — that’s a lot of money and not a lot of time, though enough time to know if it’s a repurchase.

The founders don’t seem to take skincare very lightly, either — Bottega Organic is made by a team of doctors (notably, a geneticist, neurologist, cardiologist and opthalmologist) committed to uncovering the power of plants using legit science to deliver the best skincare possible to you.

I’m going to continue to keep my eye on this brand, and as my feelings for face creams get deeper, Bottega Organica’s Face Balance Cream is one I will keep at the top of my list.

Do you use face creams? What is the most you would spend for a single skincare item? Have you tried anything from Bottega Organica? Tell me in the comments section!

August 12, 2015

beauty scoop | yosh konjac sponges

When it comes to beauty tools, I’m typically pretty devoted.

There’s not a ton of back and forth testing of things like hairbrushes, eyelash curlers, makeup brushes and the like.

I thought that would be the same with konjac sponges (little vegetable-based cleansing puffs that gently cleanse and exfoliate your skin), but I’ve been finding myself experimenting — and I’m pretty smitten with Yosh Konjac Sponges out of Canada.

yosh konjac sponges

{Yosh Konjac Sponge sent me samples of its konjac sponges to review. They cost $10.50 each.}

Handmade in Japan with a global shipping office in Hong Kong and a headquarters in Toronto, Yosh Konjac Sponges have you covered in so many corners of the world — and your face.

I love using a konjac sponge during my morning shower with a bit of a creamy cleanser. I feel like I’m getting a nice, gentle cleanse beyond what I can do with my hands and a cream cleanser alone, but it’s never too much for a simple morning cleanse.

Because I don’t exfoliate with scrubs or acids every single day, I rely on a good konjac sponge to keep my skin looking radiant without fear of daily irritation.

With konjac sponges, it all comes down to texture. Some are too soft and don’t feel like they are really exfoliating. Others are too rough and feel harsh on the skin.

Yosh Konjac Sponges, however, have nailed down the perfect texture and sizing.

They’re soft and porous, with a bowl-like curve that helps your cleanser stay put and lather, and the fine scrub feeling from these konjac sponges gently exfoliates.

yosh konjac sponges

One of the most exciting things about Yosh Konjac Sponges is the availability of different konjac cocktails — meaning the lovely cherry blossom, wild mint and green tea options in addition to the original white konjac sponge, bamboo charcoal and citrus varieties.

Though my oily, acne-prone self usually opts for something like bamboo charcoal (my skin responds well to the detoxifying properties of charcoal!), I stepped out of my comfort zone to try three that were suitable for all skin types (and made for some really colorful photos!).

Yosh Konjac Sponge in Cherry Blossom

Infused with cherry blossom leaf essence from the Yoshino Cherry Tree, Yosh Konjac Sponge’s Cherry Blossom puff also contains pink clay to help gently detoxify pores without overdrying.

Ingredients: 100% Konjac Glucomannan, Cherry Blossom Leaf Extract, Pink Clay

Yosh Konjac Sponge in Wild Mint

In addition to a shot of Japanese peppermint, Yosh Konjac Sponge’s Wild Mint puff has blue clay to help with purging skin of impurities and revealing refined, refreshed skin.

Ingredients: 100% Konjac Glucomannan, Japanese Peppermint Extract, Blue Clay

Yosh Konjac Sponge in Green Tea

Packed with antioxidants and antibacterial properties, green tea makes this Yosh Konjac Sponge a dream for any skin type, but especially for those of us who are prone to breakouts. Green tea powder aids in reducing the appearance of redness and inflammation while the actual sponge keeps skin smooth.

Ingredients: 100% Konjac Glucomannan, Green Tea Extract, Green Clay

Yosh Konjac Sponges are biodegradable (helps me with the disposable nature of these puffs — I replace mine every few months) with no artificial coloring or preservatives. They’re also not aren’t tested on animals and are made using vegetable fibers from non-GMO konjac pants.

My only complaint about Yosh Konjac Sponges? They aren’t yet available in the U.S.! I know I can order them online (remember that whole global shipping thing), but for something like a konjac sponge, I’d love to be able to run into a store to grab it.

Or order in bulk, I suppose :)

I love these konjac sponges for their perfect texture and size. Definitely recommend and will repurchase when it’s more convenient for me. Canadian readers, I’m jealous.

Have you tried konjac sponges before? What brands and types (charcoal, green tea, etc.) do you like? Tell me in the comments section!

August 7, 2015

beauty scoop | saavy naturals jasmine bar soap

For those of you who prefer a bar of soap to a bottle of body wash, there’s a jasmine-scented dream for you, too.

As this post marks the halfway point of the #12DaysOfJasmine series, I’m excited to share one of the most beautifully packaged soaps to grace my bathroom soap bin: Saavy Naturals Jasmine Bar Soap.

saavy naturals jasmine bar soap

{Saavy Naturals sent me a sample of its Jasmine Bar Soap to review. It costs $10 for an 8-ounce bar.}

“Those Saavy soaps are pretty,” says my boyfriend, the textbook Taurus who respects well-made, well-designed things.

But Saavy soaps are more than just pretty. Stripped out of its delightful packaging, Saavy’s Jasmine Bar Soap is a generous 8 ounces that is easy to handle in the shower, lasts a long time and fills up the steamy air with the most exotic scent of jasmine sambac extract.

saavy naturals jasmine bar soap

Made with kukui, moringa, argan, olive and jojoba oils with a shot of shea butter, Saavy Naturals Jasmine Bar Soap is one of the creamiest bar soaps I’ve ever used.

It creates a rich lather with generous bubbles that moisturize — never strip — your skin and fill the air with the scent of jasmine and touches of bergamot and chamomile.

Here’s the full ingredients list:

Alchemilla Vulgaris Extract, Aleurites Moluccana (Kukui) Seed Oil* Moringa Pterygosperma Seed Oil*, Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice*, Althaea Officinalis Root Extract, Aqua/Purified Water, Argania Spinosa Kernal Oil (ARGAN Oil) Chamomilla Recutita (MATRICARIA) Flower Extract, Butyrospermum Parkii (SHEA) Butter, Cetearyl Glucoside, Cetyl Alcohol, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (BERGAMOT) Fruit Oil, Equisetum Arvense Leaf Extract, Gliceryl Stearate Se, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate Se, Jasminum Officinale Oil, Jasminum Sambac (JASMIN) Extract, Lonicera Caprifolium (HONEYSUCKLE) Flower Extract, Lonicera Japonica (HONEYSUCKLE) Flower Extract, Olea Europaea (OLIVE) Fruit Oil, Passiflora Incarnata Flower Extract, Salix Alba (WILLOW) Bark Extract, Simmondsia Chinensis (JOJOBA) Seed Oil, Tocopherol (Red Palm Oil)*, Xanthan Gum.

I know we all like to say that size doesn’t matter, but with a bar soap, it really does! This 8-ounce bar is easy to handle and seems to last much longer than many of my favorite bar soaps (even when I treat them all the same and keep them dry and drained).

I also like that with this larger size, you can easily make the case for multitasking: Saavy Naturals Jasmine Bar Soap is just fine to use as a shampoo bar as well (talk about getting your jasmine on from head to toe!).

It’s extremely gentle yet produces that oh-so-satisfying lather that makes it a dream to use in your hair. The willow bar extract is helpful at keeping flakes and itch at bay as well as any scalp bumps you may experience.

Because Saavy Naturals is easily available via Amazon Prime (where my Prime members at?!), it’s easy to stock up and save (just $8 on Amazon!). I’m also eyeing the Bulgarian Rose Soap and Bulgarian Rose Body Wash. These are just the perfect display (and use!) soaps to have in your master and/or guest bathroom.

Have you tried anything from Saavy Naturals? What kind of soaps are on display in your bathroom? Tell me in the comments section!

August 3, 2015

beauty scoop | skin owl mangosteen beauty drops pm

I knew there had to be a deeper reason for why I was so drawn to Skin Owl’s Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM, an oxygenating, two-ingredient oil that reignites the glow of tired, dull skin.

Besides the fact that it’s been a secret weapon in my evening routine during pre-menstrual skin freakout weeks, its star ingredient, mangosteen, is local to Vietnam, where my mom is from.

skin owl mangosteen beauty drops pm

{Skin Owl sent me its Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM. It costs $85 for a 2-ounce glass dropper bottle.}

As I was prepping this review and doing a little research on Skin Owl and its founder, I ran across this post from Well + Good and immediately sent it to my mom, along with a picture of the mangosteen fruit and Vietnamese name for it.

“Ever eaten this before?” I texted.

“Yes, it’s good. We have it in Vietnam. Where did you see it?” she responded.

“I have a face oil that uses mangosteen oil in it.”

So of course I’m assuming my mom is face-palming herself, but she instead says that the next time I come home, she’ll buy it for me to try (you can get these exotic fruits at the Vietnamese store).

To eat. And maybe I will slather it on my face, too.

Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM

Because that’s how Skin Owl founder Annie Tevelin discovered its goodness while on a trip to Halong Bay (near Hai Ninh, where my mom was born).

She was clever enough to bottle up this goodness and bring it home for the masses who don’t have a Vietnamese mom but do suffer from lackluster skin, cystic acne and dryness all at the same time.

Mangosteen’s natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties help to heal blemishes and balance oily skin. In combination with organic, cold-pressed baobab oil from South Africa, Skin Owl Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM offers a shot of light moisture to address combination skin while further protecting it from free radical damage thanks to the powerful xanthones within mangosteen oil.

I love mixing a half a dropper full of Skin Owl Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM with a dollop of this fantastic exfoliating serum for a powerhouse, skin-brightening cocktail that has my skin looking and feeling luminous in the morning.

Because Skin Owl Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM is such a simple yet elegant and effective formula, it’s one that’s a bit easier to combine with evening vitamin A treatments without a worry of irritation (but you should always patch test first to confirm your skin doesn’t react!).

Here’s the full ingredients list:

Raw, organic, cold-pressed African Adansonia digitata (Baobab) Oil, Pure garcinia mangostana (Mangosteen) Oil

Skin Owl Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM smells both tart and sweet, similar to a tart cherry, and the clear oil glides onto skin leaving a light sheen that looks especially pretty on cheeks and hands (yes, I like to put my face oils on my hands sometimes).

The oil can also be used as a deep hydration mask by applying a full dropper onto the face and allowing it to drench the skin. Press a warm cloth onto your face to get a spa-like experience and relax for 4-5 minutes. Dab off excess oil and allow the rest to continue sinking into your skin.

Talk about a mega-luxurious treat!

When it comes to the bottom line — results — Skin Owl Mangosteen Beauty Drops PM is on my repurchase list. There’s something about this oil beyond the motherland connection that has really helped my skin appear less tired and dull.

I still break out (and I have had some pretty horrible breakouts in the past month), but I do notice a difference in clarity and balance to my skin in the morning after using this oil, especially in combination with an exfoliating serum.

The next item on my agenda: To run out to my local Vietnamese store to scoop up some mangosteens to experience how delightful they taste. And feel on my skin.

And OK, go home and visit my mom (Hi Mom!).

Have you tried anything from Skin Owl? Ever tasted a mangosteen? What other tropical fruits taste great and work well on the skin? Tell me in the comments section!

July 30, 2015

beauty scoop | true nature botanicals noble floral solid perfume

While it’s very clear that I love jasmine (as evidenced by “12 Days of Jasmine” with this post being the fifth in my series!), I’ve also got a thing for tuberose and rose.

That’s why True Nature Botanicals’ new Noble Floral Solid Perfume is an instant winner in my nose’s book, as it combines all three of these sexy, feminine scents into one chic solid perfume that’s easy to slip into your bag for regular touchups.

true nature botanicals noble floral solid perfume

{True Nature Botanicals sent me a sample of its Noble Floral Solid Perfume. It costs $95 for a .09-ounce heavyweight tin.}

As mentioned in this post, solid perfumes don’t tend to last very long on my skin and body chemistry.

But, when layered with a great jasmine body wash and jasmine body lotion, True Nature Botanicals Noble Floral Solid Perfume is a nice bit of icing that I can reapply throughout the day to keep my scent game strong.

It’s not quite practical for me to carry around my spray perfume and spritz throughout the day (though it’s perfectly fine to mist my face with toner at work throughout the day!). A solid perfume does the trick with being discreet and not overly smelly so as not to bother my coworkers’ noses.

true nature botanicals noble floral solid perfume

Here’s the full ingredients list:

Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil, Noble Floral BlendTM [citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil, citrus limon (lemon) fruit extract, citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) peel oil, cananga odorata flower oil, juniperus mexicana oil, polianthes tuberosa extract, zingiber officinale (ginger) root oil, fusanus spicatus wood oil, jasminum sambac (jasmine) flower wax, vanilla planifolia flower extract, citrus reticulata (tangerine) leaf oil, rosa centifolia flower extract, viola odorata flower/leaf extract], polyglycerol-3 beeswax (cera bellina), hydrogenated jojoba oil (jojoba esters), cera alba (beeswax), butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, copernicia prunifera (carnauba) wax, dimethicone*, magnesium stearate

For a description of the scent, True Nature Botanicals Noble Floral is very much so “what you see is what you get.”

While jasmine, tuberose and rose are the high notes, you can get a tiny whiff of orange, lemon and ginger to help cut through the florals and a touch of vanilla to soften the scent.

This by no means takes away from true nature of the scent — a noble floral — but instead gives it more depth and complexity to make it smell different from other floral favorites.

At $95 for a .09-ounce tin, True Nature Botanicals Noble Floral Solid Perfume is a splurge. However, the tin is refillable at $75 a pop, making it a little more accessible. You can go as light or as heavy in your application (you can see in the pic above that I’ve already “hit pan,” but I tend to like a thicker layer), stretching out the lifetime of your tin based on your personal use.

If you’re just now getting into perfumes, these solid ones from True Nature Botanicals are worth a shot — especially because you can request a free sample with an order you place to see what scent appeals to you most.

They are not as bold as many spray perfumes, offering instead a lovely, soft scent that have people noticing how good you smell without it being obvious that you are wearing fragrance.

And that’s the best thing about perfume, right? You want people to compliment you on how good you naturally smell, not how good your overly powerful perfume smells!

Do you use solid perfumes? Which lasts longer on you, solid or spray? What jasmine-infused perfumes are you loving lately? Tell me in the comments section!

July 29, 2015

beauty scoop | josh rosebrook hydrating accelerator

When you buy something in pairs (sometimes trios if you count travel sizes), keep backups in your beauty cabinet and stash one in your boyfriend’s cupboard just in case, you know you’ve happened upon something good.

Something really, really good.

It is without a doubt that Josh Rosebrook’s Hydrating Accelerator is a holy grail moisturizing toner in my collection. I can’t get enough of it, recommend it to everyone who emails me looking for skincare tips and will soon have listed it on my highly edited “faves” page.

josh rosebrook hydrating accelerator

{I am a complete and total fangirl when it comes to Josh Rosebrook Hydrating Accelerator. I’ve purchased it from the man himself and repurchased it something like five times from both Integrity Botanicals and The Detox Market. It costs $32 for a 4-ounce plastic spray bottle.}

If you’re unfamiliar with Josh or his line, know that it’s a carefully curated collection that pleases both men and women thanks to its minimalist packaging and unisex scents.

I’ve tried and reviewed the bulk of his products and respect the man’s approach to formulating (the herbs, oh the herbs!) as well as his humble, genuine demeanor. Find authentic formulators, and you’ll find authentic formulations!

But of everything in his growing yet true-to-his-values skincare line, nothing pleases me more than Hydrating Accelerator. I’ve been using it for a year now, first purchasing it from the man himself at “A Night for Green Beauty” in Los Angeles in 2014.

First, let’s talk functionality: Josh Rosebrook’s Hydrating Accelerator is packaged in the most fantastic plastic spritz bottle ever.

Yes, that’s right. I said fantastic plastic.

I don’t care how many fancy violet or amber glasses are collecting on your top shelf — this off-white, easily recyclable No. 1 plastic bottle is the bomb, and if Josh ever changes the packaging, I am going to panic funnel my toner into an old bottle instead.

What makes the packaging so amazing is the way the spray nozzle is made. With one press, you get the most perfect, fine, even mist. There’s no targeted stream that messes with your makeup or deposits too much product onto one spot. That’s extremely difficult to find with the popular violet glass spray bottles available today.

Next, let’s talk scent: Imagine a soft dessert of marshmallow and vanilla that gently satisfies your cravings. Then add a touch of delicate ylang ylang and calendula to balance out the sweetness with some edible flowers.

Drooling yet? I catch myself every time I spritz this creation onto my face (which, well, is throughout the entire day — forgot to mention that I also keep this on my desk at work!).

Now, onto ingredients: In true Josh Rosebrook fashion, he’s combined his signature organic herbal infusions and oils with soothing aloe vera-infused water to drench your skin in the most active nutrients, essentially quenching its thirst from the outside in (while on the inside, you better be drinking water every couple hours throughout the day to maintain that glow!).

Josh Rosebrook’s Hydrating Accelerator is the most calming, soothing facial mist I’ve ever used, helping to heal my skin from dryness, itchiness and flakiness while gently preparing it for deeper hydration from serums and oils. Its rich antioxidant and fatty acid content work in concert with the skin’s naturally protective acid mantle, keeping it safe from the elements.

Here’s the full ingredients list:

Organic Vitamin Infused Aloe Water, Organic Oils of: Sunflower, Coconut, Grapeseed and Almond; Organic Herbal Infusions of: Bilberry, Slippery Elm, Calendula Flowers, Fennel Seed, Chickweed, Skullcap, Neem Leaf, Ginkgo Leaf, Hawthorn Berry, Green Tea, Marshmallow Root, St. John’s Wort and Alfalfa; Plant Vitamins E, A, C and B2; Organic Vanilla Bean Extract; Organic Essential Oils of: Ylang Ylang, Rosemary, Lavender, Eucalyptus

OK, so what exactly do you do with this thing again? I get this question a lot, mostly from non-beauty junkies who read about all the crazy skincare products out there and don’t really “get” the concept behind toners, mists, hydrosols and the like (and who can blame them — there are so many damn names for these, basically, vitamin- and herb-infused liquids!).

For simplicity, I’m going to refer to all products in this category as “toner.”

Josh Rosebrook’s Hydrating Accelerator is a moisturizing toner that’s best used to prep the skin for layering skincare products as well as for refreshing the skin throughout the day. After cleansing in the morning, pat your face dry and then spritz your entire face with three to five pumps of Hydrating Accelerator.

While your skin is still damp from the spray, apply a layer of your favorite serum and then finish off with a moisturizing face cream or face oil.

A damp face pre-moisturizer application is key to helping the product penetrate as deeply as possible, especially if you’re using an oil instead of a water-based cream. Hydrating Accelerator, which is already loaded with moisture, is only going to add that much more!

Throughout the day, mist your face with Hydrating Accelerator to keep your makeup from looking dry or cakey and to also refresh your skin, giving you that beautiful glow even under the unflattering fluorescent lights of your office.

Finally, here’s how it all works together:

  • Antibacterial Bilberry and neem gently tighten and tone the skin.
  • Fennel seed fights inflammation and firms the skin.
  • Marshmallow root helps brighten dull skin.
  • Antioxidant-rich calendula, slippery elm and skullcap protect and balance the skin.
  • Chickweed, hawthorn berry and green tea activate healing thanks to their powerful antioxidant and vitamin content.
  • Coconut and grapeseed deliver essential fatty acids and vitamins to balance and strengthen the skin’s natural acid mantle.
  • Organic vitamin-infused aloe water preps skin for deep hydration.

It’s products like these that re-energize me to blog. When I’m this damn smitten with a product, I want to shout it from the rooftops (but kinda also don’t want to tell anyone for fear of it selling out and fear of my three bottles in reserve not getting me through to the next restock).

I hope you’ve enjoyed this fangirl post and will get to know Josh’s line a little more. But if you haven’t, that’s cool. More Hydrating Accelerator for me.

No, I’m not paid to shill for Josh. Hell, Josh didn’t even know I was writing this post until I tagged him on social media today! And that’s the way I like it. Surprise! I love you. But you already knew that. 

What is your holy grail toner? What products do you buy in bulk? Have you tried anything from Josh’s line? Tell me in the comments section!

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