Dec 202019
 

Random Thoughts #5

 

What I’ve been up to?

  • Boy, have these past weeks been hectic; I’ve tried and managed to check all the “to do” plans for the first half of this month, all the work related tasks, preparation for the Holidays, so I can now finally just kick back and take a much needed break. Baking, listening to classical music, reading, paining, writing, long walks in my beloved forest.
  • It is a magical time of the year. And joyful. Hopeful. And it’s a time when I miss her even more. The memories of us baking together. As much as it is painful, I, as always, every moment of my life, know God will fill me with joy, comfort and peace.
  • As every year around this time, I bid my readers adieu till January, when I’ll return with more posts. But for now, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! May you be blessed, warm and may you be filled with hope and love.

Bible verse of the month

  • “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

Musical inspiration of the month

This month on the blog

This Month On The Blog

  • My Makeup Routine. It’s getting colder and colder and my skin’s been yearning for oilier, heavier textures. As I layer quite a few richer textures before applying a foundation, I’ve been opting for a foundation that’s also thicker in texture but also offers more coverage with a minimal amount of a product used. The colors are a mixture of berry and golden ones.
  • Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review. Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil, with their unique textures, are decadent and luxurious treats for the ultimate nourishing body care.
  • Love Lula Beauty Box December 2019. The theme is Wintery in its rich nourishing goodies, along with newly launched incredibly smelling perfume oil: there’s a rich deep cleansing balm, rich body butter, chocolate face mask, and a perfume oil of an incredible scent.
  • Best of Green Beauty 2019. I’ve reviewed 30 products (not counting my first impressions from my Love Lula Beauty Boxes) this year. There have been quite a lot of posts of my routines (morning, evening and makeup), the discounts posts, guides… In short, I’ve posted 59 posts this year, making 2019 a very productive year. See which products made my list.

What I’ve been testing lately

Testing

  • Kathleen Natural Cleansing Lotion. I’ve been testing this excellent cleanser for a while now and it has been featured in my many morning and evening routines: a gentle on the skin, yet strong when it comes to an actual act of cleansing. Makes the skin so clean and so soft, with no tight feeling. Non-irritating, to the point I gave it a try as an eye makeup remover, which works perfectly as. I’ve been running really low on my first bottle, so when I got a chance to get another one from Love Lula, I jumped on it – I don’t like to hoard products and most of the times, I prefer to try another product from of the same category – but I just had to get another one. I will post a full review of this great cleanser soon, most probably in January.
  • Dr Hauschka Favorites Gift Set. I adore such small travel/gift sets with many various smaller products inside. They serve several purposes: they are great travel companions, they are great to carry around in your purse (especially tiny hand creams; I wish more brands had offered such small tubes of hand creams), they are great as testers to try the products, adequately, before buying a full size and they are great if full sized products are too expensive and you want to use several of them, but you can’t afford full sized ones all at ones. Just an all around positive aspects. This Dr Hauschka Favorites Set contains 5 mini products: Cleansing Cream (10ml), Quince Day Cream (5ml), Facial Toner (10ml), Hydrating Hand Cream (10ml) and a Lip Balm (4,9g). Unfortunately, as of right now (as with many gift sets) this one is sold out, so I linked the full sized products for you to check out.

My wishlist

My Wishlist

  • Oils of Heaven Raspberry Oil. The Raspberry oil has been one of my favorite oils for about 13 or so years, not only because (similarly to Hemp oil) is great for a reactive skin that’s easily irritated and inflamed, but also because I like the gentle scent of it. Love Lula (Oils of Heaven is their own house brand) has just launched it, so I need to try it; I’ve been a fan of their oils since they started their brand; I especially adore their mini bottles.
  • Inika Living Color Eyeshadow Quad in Blossom. I am debating whether I should or not, because I am pretty covered with beautiful eye shadows, but the colors in this palette are so beautiful and so… currently unavailable. Sigh.

Readers Questions

  • You keep sending me your questions – thank you! There’s a lot of them, and I do what I can. For today, I’ll only answer a few, regarding my makeup routine: how long does it take for me to apply my makeup and which part of the makeup process takes the most of my time. 10 minutes is how much time I spend applying my makeup, and that includes a makeup routine where I apply foundation, eye shadow and mascara – all minimal, of course. When I opt for a quick makeup routine, without mascara, eye shadow and sometimes even without foundation (just either a concealer, or a foundation here and there), then it takes me 3 minutes. The most time I spend on my eyebrows – they make or break the final and overall look, so I do give the most attention to my eyebrows; sometimes, I get great results quickly, and sometimes, there are just days when it seems the eyebrows have a mid of their own – either they look completely unrelated or like twins instead of cousins.

Tip of the month

  • Sometimes, it just so happens that there’s still a bit of a face oil or face cream left, and you know you won’t be able to finish it before it’s “use before” date; maybe you’ve purchased another face oil or cream and the older ones are just sitting on your cosmetic shelf. But you don’t want to throw it out. I’d suggest you use the face oil as a cuticle oil or a hair oil or body oil. Similar, I suggest using a face cream as a body lotion or a foot cream. I would, in most cases, advise against using body products as on your skin; some body care products have a higher concentration of essential oils in them, making them inaapopriate to be used on a face and some body care products may have too high of a concentration of various butters, including, but not only, coconut oil/butter, which can be comedogenic.

Rant of the month

  • It doesn’t matter how much work you put into your article, how much knowledge there is, how much you like a product – if you don’t have the appropriate number of followers on Instagram, then some brands won’t deem it worthy of liking your article, much less comment; it’s very telling just what kind of brands these are and sometimes I regret liking their products, testing them and putting so much work into, what essentially is, a promotion of their products. If another account steals your work and has many (bought) followers, these same brands will fawn over “their” posts, which are, essentially, your stolen posts. How twisted is this? And yes, these same brands will like and comment, even share, posts from those, who have many followers.

A few good deals from around the green beauty world

→  Love Lula has:

– FREE October Beauty Box (worth £59) when you spend £50 (code: OCTBOX). Read my first impressions.
– newly launched Esse Probiotic Skincare Hyaluronic Serum
– newly launched limited edition Inika makeup and makeup gift sets 
– newly launched RMS Beauty Hiden Desire Palette and RMS Beauty Foundation
– newly launched Madara Makeup
– more free gifts with purchase
– Christmas gift sets

→  Alyaka has:

– 20% off when you spend £450 (code: 20OFF450)
– Christmas Shop now open
– Advent Calendar – limited and exclusive – only €145 (worth over €300!)
– big discounts in their sale section

→  Content Beauty has:

20% off on Gift Sets and Stocking Fillers when you spend £50
– Christmas Shop now open
–  free gifts with purchase
– great savings in their sale section

→  Pharmaca has:

– 20% off your order (code: WELLNESS20)

→  Onlynaturals has:

– 10% off your order (code: XMAS)
– big discounts in their SALE section
– FREE gifts with purchase

→  FeelUnique has:

–  Christmas Shop now open
– up to 30% off on Gift Sets
– FeelUnique 12 Day Beauty Advent Calendar (worth £120!) for only £45 £31,50
– Clean Beauty Box for only €46,80 €27,30 (worth €124,92)
– up to 60% off in their Outlet section
– FREE gifts with purchase

→  The Detox Market has:
Detox Market Best Of Green beauty

– Best of Green Beauty Beauty Box (worth $249!) for $159

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merry

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The post contains affiliate links. For more info, read our disclaimer.

 

Dec 192019
 

When Best of Green Beauty 2019 gets posted, you know the year is nearly over – and how fast it has gone by. Usually, Best of post would be the last one from me before I start my Holidays; I have another installation of Random Thoughts ready for you tomorrow – but for today, I will walk you through the many reviews of green beauty products I’ve posted this year: in total, I’ve reviewed 30 products (not counting my first impressions from my Love Lula Beauty Boxes, despite those first impressions being, still, detailed and thorough). There have been quite a lot of posts of my routines (morning, evening and makeup), the discounts posts, guides… In short, I’ve posted 59 posts this year, making 2019 a very productive year, wouldn’t you agree? Sure, as always, there was a lot more planned, but – taking it one day at the time, and making sure that what I post, what I share with you, is of a benefit to you – high quality content (after all, I am a content, an original content creator, not an influencer), which encompasses decades of personal experience with green beauty and the knowledge acquired – all based on honesty. I’ve poured untold hours into this content, and I hope you’ve liked it and will find it useful for many years to come.

Best of Green Beauty 2019

If I were to point out several brands, which dominated on my blog, based on my personal use in year 2019, I would first have to mention Ere Perez. Once I started testing and using their makeup products, and enjoying the high quality at reasonable prices, I dipped into their skincare products as well – and been thoroughly impressed by them, especially their Green Booster Serum, which became one of the best green beauty products I’ve ever used. I’ve been using other Ere Perez products as well, just that they haven’t received their reviews yet. The next brand, which impressed me and was (and will continue) present in 2019, both on my blog and my personal use, was another high quality brand at very affordable prices, and – a rose oil being their main ingredient – Alteya Organics. And the third one, which caught my attention with, first, a few great bath/shower gels, and then with their amazing cleansing lotion and a recently launched face mask – Kathleen Natural.

Best of Green Beauty 2019

 

A very special note of thanks to Love Lula for spoiling me with these goodies! 

 

  Ere Perez Quandong Green Booster Serum It’s a water-based serum, meaning it’s far lighter thinner in its texture than an oil-based serum. Yes, a little goes a long way and the serum applies easily, but my experience with this serum has been that of me wanting to splash my face with it – it just simply feels so good on the skin! I just like this almost instant boost of hydration I feel on my face, the gentle and calm feeling. It absorbs fairy quickly; at first, there’s a bit of an emulsion-like feeling on the skin, which then turns into a soft, gentle layer.
The Ere Perez Quandong Green Booster Serum is poetry for the skin – a true serum, with concentrated amount of active ingredients such as – to deliver and seal hydration – whether used alone or before applying moisturizers. The way it feels on the skin is incredible and the way it makes the skin look is equally impressive: soft, smooth, glowy and hydrated skin! It feels especially good on the sensitive, gentle part of the under-eye area, as it’s so soft, refreshing, hydrating and a perfect layer before applying makeup/concealer.
This serum is a treat for any type of skin: if you have oily skin – it promotes a balanced skin and contains antimicrobial ingredients, if you have dull and dehydrated skin, it contains hydration boosting ingredients, if you have sensitive skin, it contains anti-irritating ingredients.

  Ere Perez Olive Oil Lipsticks Olive Oil Lipsticks are another high quality, luxurious beauty products from Ere Perez: beautiful, highly pigmented, rich colors – whether you prefer a classic subtle look, a happy bright Spring-like look or bold Summer look – The Ere Perez Olive Oil Lipsticks will not disappoint. They feel creamy and velvety, hydrating and nourishing. The three Ere Perez Olive Oil Lipsticks that I’ve picked are in Surprise (rich, bold, hot pink and very pigmented watermelon color, with a very distant hint of violet sub-tone), High Tea (an elegant, sophisticated, classic dusty pink nude lipstick, with a distant hint of a mauve, perfect for any occasion and any time of the day) and Picnic (this happy, bright peachy nude has a very Spring-like feel, but that doesn’t mean you can’t wear it during Winter as well. There’s a hint of very light, barely there brown color, mixed with a hint of an orange color, with a peachy pinkish color poured on the top).

  Ere Perez Avocado Waterproof Mascara and Jojoba Eye Pencils  The lashes are easily separated and coated with a richly pigmented black color. One layer of this mascara will achieve a quite natural look, with lashes nicely separated and richly colored. For a bigger volume, at least one more layer is needed, and that won’t pose an issue, as the mascara separates the lashes even with more than one layer. Where the Ere Perez Avocado Waterproof Mascara does not deliver the oomph! result is with lengthening of the lashes; sure, the lashes are a bit longer, but if you’re decisively looking for a mascara, which will make your lashes much longer, this one might not do the work.
The Ere Perez Jojoba Eye Pencils are creamy and more on the soft side; primarily, these eye pencils are not so much as eye liners in lining your water line. They are more like creamy eye shadows, and thus very gentle and soft on your eye lids. The two Ere Perez Jojoba Eye Pencils that I’ve picked are Gold and Copper. The gold one is a beautiful true gold, though it does have a tiny and distant pinkish undertone. The copper one is a stronger and darker color; it falls in a mixture of somewhere between dark berry, bordo and brown, with a glistening finish, of course.

   Ere Perez Chamomile Eye Shadow Palette in Beautiful  Indeed, a beautiful palette of natural, neutral earth-based colors: 3 shimmer ones and 3 matte ones. They can be all used alone or in many combinations with each other – either way, you’ll achieve a natural and beautiful look. You can also use these eye shadows for highlighting, contouring and bronzing. Colors in this Ere Perez Chamomile Eyeshadow Palette, being natural and earthly-toned, are perfect for those, who prefer a natural look, especially the one which goes perfectly with the color of your eyes.

  RMS Beauty Signature Set – Mod Collection  This elegant, minimalist palette of five pans is truly a treat for any fan of a high quality and excellently performing natural beauty products. Each of the products in Signature Set – Mod Collection Palette can be used on their own and you can achieve a minimalist and natural look with just these pans. Above all, all these pans are versatile and can be used for other than their designated purposes, along with the fact you can mix them all depending on your imagination. All the products are formulated with organic and very stable ingredients, which have antioxidant, antimicrobial and hydrating properties.

Best of Green Beauty 2019

  Bloomtown Soothing and Clearing Masks  Bloomtown The Clearing Charcoal & Tea Tree Treatment Mask could not be more perfect for oily, congested and acne prone skin; aside from detoxing charcoal and kaolin clay, this clearing mask contains anti-bacterial essential oils made for oily, congested and acne prone skin, such as tea tree and rosemary, along with the natural salicylic acid – white willow bark extract. Due to charcoal, this mask is of a dark grey color.
Bloomtown The Spring Blue Clay & Indigo Leaf Soothing Mask is another great and affordable product from Bloomtown, and perfect as a follow-up to the clearing mask. The soothing mask is a great choice for those with sensitive skin, as well as for a spoiling session, not only due to delicious scent of this mask. If you experience irritation, or if you have dry skin, in need of some deep conditioning, or just looking for a mask which will plump up, soothe and nurture you skin – the Bloomtown soothing mask just might be it. Just as the clearing mask, the soothing one, too, is glycerine-based, so it does not dry up, but smoothly apply and does not tighten the skin.

  Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel Mask  It’s a welcomed mild chemical peel I use twice a week (other, stronger chemical peels, I use once, at most – twice a month). I leave it on for about 15 minutes – but again, keep in mind, that my skin is well used and adjusted to chemical peels. With regular use Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel Mask, keeping a regular routine, your skin will be smooth, soft, renewed and other products, be it a facial oil or cream, will be more easily spread and absorbed, and that goes for makeup as well. After using the Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel Mask for over 2 years now, I can report that this product is of a high quality and actually – works!

   Lavera Wild Rose Body Care Collection  I’ve been using all these Lavera products for many many years, and I still enjoy them a lot; I am certain I will keep buying them for years to come. What’s not to like? They are reasonably priced, affordable yet this does not compromise their quality. The scent of all of them is beautiful and its source is natural: essential oils, flower waters – all make for a fabulous smelling scent of roses. The Lavera Pampering Body Wash is creamy and gentle, the Lavera Pampering Body Lotion is rich, leaving the skin nourished and soft. The Lavera Pampering Deodorant Roll On is a creamy and gentle deodorant, with a beautiful rose scent, and so is the Lavera Pampering Deodorant Spray – with a stronger and longer lasting scent – and despite being an alcohol based deodorant does not irritate the skin. Each of the products is affordable and the whole collection I presented here, 4 products, cost £35. So, what’s not to like?

  FOM London Hydra Plump Serum  The FOM London Hydra Plump Serum, contains hydration – promoting ingredients as well as antioxidants in a form of quite a few extracts such as green tea extract,  hyaluronic acid and niacinamide – indeed, upon applying the serum, the skin is plump, the hydration is felt, and the finish is that of a silky and smooth and naturally dewy skin. It feels very light on the skin, and the layering of additional products is seamless.

   Alteya Organics Rose Otto Face Sunscreen SPF25  The Alteya Organics Rose Otto Face Sunscreen SPF25 is another great product from Bulgarian Alteya Organics brand – it seems I can’t get enough of their products. The sunscreen covers so many aspects and needs, all at once – from being a great natural sunscreen, to being a moisturiser with an array of skin-beneficial and precious ingredients, to being a sheer-ly tinted primer for a foundation – this one can do it all. And it smells gently flowery for an added bonus.

Best of Green Beauty 2019

   Benecos Translucent Powder and Glamour Mascara  The Benecos Natural Mascara Glamour Look is rich in texture and as such translates on the lashes, giving a volume and length, with lashes nicely separated – and stays on all day. It’s easily layered if you wish for an even more glamourous look, and does not irritate the eyes. The Benecos Natural Translucent Powder is a gentle, silky-like translucent powder, finely milled and sturdily pressed. Its application is easy and fast. It does not set into fine lines and works perfectly with various other makeup (and skincare) products – whether it’s a liquid foundation, concealer, or as a primer for eyelashes and eyelids. It works perfectly when going for a very minimal makeup look, when you only apply a skin serum, maybe a bit of a highlighter/blush and want to mattify the face. Large swaps or precision application – this translucent powder delivers.

   Jane Scrivner Intense De-Stress Mask  The Jane Scrivner Intense De-Stress Mask contains the ingredients to nourish, hydrate, calm and plump the skin for a radiant and smooth skin, such as argan, jojoba, rosehip oil, while also providing a detoxing session with kaolin clay. It makes it suitable for all skin types, whether oily, dehydrated (just because your skin is oily, it does not mean it’s not dehydrated!), but especially if it’s stressed from internal stress or due to environmental factors. It will plump and calm the skin, making it ready to proceed with your evening skincare routine by applying a moisturiser, or with your morning skincare routine, for making it a relaxed canvas before applying makeup.

   Lavera 2-1 Compact Foundation  It offers a buildable coverage – to the point where it’s a strong coverage, but if you, like me, prefer less of a coverage and a natural glowy finish, then this foundation will also be a great choice. A primer, in order for the foundation to spread out easily and evenly is a must, as well as for achieving a natural look. The staying power of Lavera 2-1 Compact Foundation is also quite remarkable – with a primer and a great makeup brush to blend it thoroughly, it lasts all day, does not slide or break and I haven’t had one instance where I’d think I need a translucent powder.

   Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Esse Body Oil  The Esse Light Body Moisturiser is a light, a bit runny, quickly absorbing body moisturiser, great for use after a morning shower or in hot Summer days. It’s hydrating and nourishing and its scent is sweet and refreshing – and long lasting. This body moisturiser makes the skin so incredibly velvet and soft! The Esse Body Oil is a unique and unlike any body oil I’ve ever tried – decadent and luxurious in its scent, texture and the deeply nourishing and hydrating effect it has on the skin, while making the skin so incredibly soft. The ingredients used in this body oil are also unique and precious for a body oil.

Honorable mention of some of the products which will be reviewed next year, but are used daily already

Best of Green Beauty 2019

   Ere Perez Moringa All-Beauty Creme It glides on the skin, quickly absorbs, is light, hydrating and makes  makeup application perfect.

   Kathleen Natural Cleansing Lotion Used mostly in my morning skincare routine, but since I’ve discovered this all-around excellent cleanser thoroughly but gently removes eye makeup, I’ve decided to save it for this purpose only, since I find it hard to find an eye makeup remover which does not irritate my eyes.

   Kathleen Natural Deep Pore Treatment Mask  Anti-bacterial mask, targeting oily, congested skin – and wow – what a great mask this one is! A creamy texture, which dries in a few minutes, does not irritate the skin and the first results are visible immediately – and after a few treatments, the skin clears up.

   Jane Scrivner OO Cream  A light, fast absorbing cream but also very hydrating and quite matte in its finish. I’ve been using it for a while now, over a serum or a moisturiser or over a face oil.

   Inika BB Cream Foundation and Inika Liquid Foundation Great, buildable coverage and long lasting staying power.

   Alteya Organics Facial Cleanser & Wash It gently cleanses and removes any of the remaining impurities. It’s also very affordable.

   Dr Hauschka Light Reflecting Concealer  It softens dark shadows with natural light reflections and soothes the skin.

   Madara Plum Plum Lip Balm and Madara Hemp Hemp Lip Conditioning Balm  The Plum Lip Balm  – it’s a lip balm, but it’s a lip balm moonlighting as a lip gloss as well! The tube is also that of a lip gloss. It’s has a bit of a color, a pretty, very natural peachy one. The scent is delicious, fruity one, that of a plum, of course. The Hemp Lip Balm – the texture is thin and of finely whipped nourishing ingredients such as shea butter and coconut oil, along with soothing chamomile and hydrating hemp oil. It’s so very soft and – “balzamy”.

   Madara Regene Volume Rebuilding Lifting Mask For that quick pick me up, plumper appearance.

   Balm Balm Little Miracle Cleanser  This cleanser is quite a treat, along with a very lovely scent (though maybe % of essential oils might be a bit too high?) making it great for an aromatherapy ritual as well. It melts away the makeup and dirt, while not stripping the skin of its natural oils – the skin is cleansed and soft.

 

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Did any of the products from my Best of Green Beauty 2019 list find themselves on your list of best green beauty products for the year 2019? If so, which ones? Or, maybe – you’ve just placed these products on your wishlist for 2020? Let me know!

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For more information (all the links to my review + where to buy them) on mentioned brands, please visit their dedicated brand pages:

Ere Perez
RMS Beauty
Madara 
Lavera
Benecos 
Inika
Dr Hauschka 

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All the products mentioned in this post (except for Kathleen Natural Mask being gifted to me by Kathleen Natural) have been generously gifted to Nature of Europe by Love Lula for the purpose of an honest review.

Nature of Europe is Love Lula’s Accredited Blogger.

The post contains affiliate links. For more info, read our disclaimer.

Dec 182019
 

A few days ago, we had a splash of first snow – even if just for a few days – Winter has knocked on the door. And so did my Love Lula Beauty Box, whose theme is Wintery in its rich nourishing goodies, along with newly launched incredibly smelling perfume oil: there’s a rich deep cleansing balm, rich body butter, chocolate face mask, and, as mentioned, a perfume oil. The total value of this month’s Love Lula Beauty Box is £47 (though, given how much I like these goodies, it feels a lot more) – whereas the actual cost is a barely-worth-mentioning fraction of it.

So, what’s in this month’s Love Lula Beauty Box?

Love Lula Beauty Box December 2019

Walden Natural Perfume “Live the Life” Perfume Oil (10ml; £17,00). Oh my gracious goodness! The scent of this newly launched scent from Walden has left me speechless. As I’ve had a chance to try all the available Walden scents, this one, the “Live the Life” one has now immediately become my favorite one; it’s even better than “Two Eternities”. Well, immediately… not exactly, but… Upon first applying it, there was this really strong burst of citrus scent, due to top notes being bergamont and orange. Hmm, I thought, that doesn’t smell nice – I prefer flowery scent as opposed to citrusy ones. But! – after a minute, once the top notes started fading and the middle notes started appearing, I heard the angels sing! Sweet violet – my very very close second scent after rose. There’s a hint of tuberose behind it, and once the middle notes settle in, a very distant and gentle jasmine whiffs above the middle notes. Heavenly! It’s a sweet (though this sweet is more orientally wooden due to very expensive sandalwood) gentle violet floral scent – it’s like it has my name written all over it. I don’t even know how to describe how much I adore this scent. I would dip my while body into this perfume oil. There’s also an accompanying Live the Life Eau de Parfum, and shipping restrictions make me weep! I gotta find a way to get my hands on this perfume. And I want a “Live the Life” solid perfume, body oil, soap… ! I’ve never said this before in any of my reviews, but… I LOVE “Live the Life”. Everything around Walden Natural Perfumes brand is so elegant, classy, timeless – from packaging to the name behind the brand and each perfume, as well as the notes from Henry David Thoreau’s book Walden/Life in the Woods (how very me, again), from which this, too, perfume got its name: “I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”

Nature’s Kitchen Chocolate Face Mask (100g/ ). Being a chocolate addict, I might as well wear chocolate all over my face. This is one of the two Nature’s Kitchen’s face mask I’ve had on my wishlist – the other is Nature’s Kitchen Enzyme Face Mask, which I gotta get my hands on as soon as possible – and it has arrived right on time. Texture of this mask is a sturdy balm-like: it’s not runny, it’s a firmly whipped mixture of a butter and balm, all in one. Swirl around the mask with your fingers, and it starts melting; it applies and spreads easily. I leave it on for about 10 min; the mask does not dry out, but it does lose a bit of an oily luster as it gets absorbed by the skin. It washes off easily with water; if you have dry skin and not prone to blemishes, you can leave your skin as is (or follow up with other treatments), but if you have oily and/or prone to blemishes skin, I would suggest you follow with a cleanser, as this is a very buttery mask, which might result in bumps – yes the skin does feel very soft after rinsing this mask, but there’s a lot of cocoa butter in this mask. As mentioned, the mask makes the skin soft, and the rich nourishment is felt right away, as the mask contains, along cocoa butter and cocoa extract, castor oil, grape seed oil and apricot oil – very appropriate mixture for colder days, when the skin needs some melting butters and oil – along with chocolate (think antioxidants). There’s also quite a lot of this mask – 100g, which will last a long time. The mask is currently sold out, but there’s a gift set available, which has this mask and Chocolate Mocha Polishing Scrub – both for only £24,99.

Love Lula Beauty Box December 2019

Balm Balm Frankincense Deep Cleansing Balm (30ml/£9,50). This deep cleansing balm is from the Frankincense range: the cleansing balm has a very fragrant frankincense scent, which will make you indulge in a Wintery aromatherapy while cleansing your skin. It’s a firmly whipped balm, hard at first touch, but while you swirl around it, it begins to quickly melt. I apply this cleansing balm all over my face in a massaging motion and leave it on for good 5 minutes, in order for the balm to melt and dissolve makeup. Right before removing it, I massage it once again, then proceed to remove it with a damp hot muslin cloth or wet hot towel. The balm deeply sweeps – almost vacuums – makeup and impurities, and even after wiping it off, you can feel the nourishing oils and butters making the skin soft. But since balms usually contain waxes as well, which can be comedogenic, despite the deep cleansing and soft feel this balm leaves behind, I always opt for a double cleansing and use a cleansing wash after. This travel size (or a testing size) of 30ml will last a very long time; there’s also a bigger, 60ml size available, though you’ll get a substantial mileage from the smaller one – at a reasonable price at that.

Love Lula Beauty Box December 2019

Natura Siberica Rich Body Butter (200g/£5,25). I’ve been testing quite a few Natura Siberica products lately, and I can tell you one thing – don’t let the low prices of this brand make you think the products are not worth it – you just get quite good products for very affordable prices, though they do contain a few problematic inhredients – this body butter included. Now, given I am quite loaded with body lotions, getting another one was currently not on my radar, but the texture and performance of this butter are such, that it is a welcomed one for Winter. This body butter is not your typical body butter: the texture falls somewhere between thin butter and thick body lotion. Its consistency is very smooth, it applies and spreads easily. It takes about 3 minutes to fully absorb, does not leave greasy feeling behind and, unlike typical natural body butters, which consist of butters, oils (and maybe essential oils) and no fillers (this butter is mixed with water), it does not stick to clothes, which makes this body butter usable in the morning as well; it can also be used as feet butter as well. The skin is fed and nourished. The scent is nice, not overpowering – but its source is problematic: hexyl cinnamal and lilial. There’s a generous and typical amount for body butters – 200g for a low price.

Love Lula Beauty Box December 2019

So this concludes my first impressions of this month’s Love Lula Beauty Box. The theme is very much in accord with December – rich and nourishing, with a rich body butter, rich buttery chocolate face mask and deep cleansing face balm. And, then there’s the newly launched scent from the Walden Natural Perfumes called “Live the Life” and a minute after trying the “Live the Life” perfume oil, I was entrapped with the scent. All in all – this is a great Beauty Box for me.

And all these products have a total value of £47,00 whereas the actual cost of the yearly Love Lula Beauty Box subscription is £12,66 (or £16,60 for international customers) per month (yep, even less than it was before). You also get a discount on all the brands featured in a current Beauty Box and even this discount got even better – now you can get all the brands featured in a Beauty Box for 25% off!

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How did you like this month’s Love Lula Beauty Box? Got any products you’ve had on your wishlist? Found any new brands or new favorite products? Let me know!

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Love Lula Beauty Box gifted to Nature of Europe by Love Lula for the purpose of an honest review.

Nature of Europe is Love Lula’s Accredited Blogger.

Dec 172019
 

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil, with their unique textures, are decadent and luxurious treats for the ultimate nourishing body care.

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

All the products I’ve had a chance to try so far (and with many more on my wishlist) from this luxurious green beauty brand – Esse Probiotic Skincare – have left a great impression on me. Yes, Esse’s prices are quite steep, no way around this fact, but their formulations, ingredients and effect on the skin, along with mesmerizing scents, put this brand in a league quite of their own.

I’ve been using the Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Esse Body Oil for months now, and both boast of uniqueness in many areas of organic body care, and both are decadent, nourishing, softening and smelling marvelous.

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Esse Light Body Moisturiser

Esse Light Body Moisturiser comes in a sturdy 200ml glass bottle with a handy pump. Its texture is unlike any body moisturiser I’ve tried so far: thin in consistency, nearing on almost runny. It takes 1 -2 pumps for the whole body as little truly goes a long way and the body moisturiser applies and spreads with ease. It takes a good minute for the body misturiser to fully absorb and immediately upon application, the velvet soft skin appears. The nourishing and hydrating aspect of this body moisturiser is so amazing, it’s almost difficult to describe it – and it lasts all day. Due to its light texture, I use this body moisturiser in the morning, immediately after a shower, while my skin is still a bit damp, which results in the body moisturiser to be absorbed faster and deeper into the skin. This body mosituriser is also a great choice for Summer. And while suitable for all skin types, those with very dry skin might find it not rich enough.

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

The smell is also in a category of its own: a long lasting sweet-like-candy one due to Vanilla Extract and Spearmint Leaf Oil, which is also the source of fresh and refreshing feeling on the skin. Bellow the surface of this sweet scent is a distant scent of Palmarosa oil. Just – marvelous scent!

Its color looks like a foundation: a very light brownish caramel color. Of course, the color dilutes once on the skin and leaves no stains.

The Esse Light Body Moisturiser, like all Esse products, also contains valuable nourishing and hydrating ingredients, providing the skin with antioxidants and essential omega fatty acids.

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So, how about the ingredients?

Ingredients: Aspalathus Linearis (Rooibos) Leaf Extract*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Cetearyl  Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Glycerin**, Sclerocarya Birrea (Marula) Seed Oil, Schinziophyton Rautanenii (Manketti) Seed Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract*, Kigelia Africana Fruit Extract, Inulin*, Xanthan Gum, Glyceryl Caprylate, Sodium Phytate, Cymbopogon Martini (Palmarosa) Oil*, Citric Acid, Benzyl Alcohol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Cananga Odorata (Ylang Ylang) Flower Oil*, Vanilla Planifolia Extract, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Mentha Vidiris (Spearmint) Leaf Oil*, Linalool***, Limonene***, Geraniol***

Rooibos Leaf Extract is rich in alpha hydroxy and zinc. It has anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and rejuvenating properties. Jojoba Seed Oil is an emollient, natural to skin’s sebum, it soothes the skin and promotes collagen production. Marula Seed Oil has a high content of antioxidants, minerals and fatty acids; it hydrates and repairs the skin. Manketti Seed Oil, has high levels of Vitamin E. It has moisturizing, rejuvenating properties. Aloe Vera Leaf Extract has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties; it is soothing, moisturizing and promotes wound-healing.

Kigelia Africana Fruit Extract has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It also firms and tightens and calms skin. Inulin is a humectant; it makes skin soft and smooth. Palmarosa Oil has antiseptic and
antiviral properties. It moisturizes and balances the the skin. It rejuvenates and regenerates the skin. Ylang Ylang Flower Oil balances the skin by normalizing sebum production. It has anti-irritant and anti-aging along properties

Vanilla Planifolia Extract is antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties. Sunflower Seed Oil has a high content of unsaturated fatty acids. It is rich with Vitamin A, D and E. It spreads easily and is quickly absorbed. It is an antioxidant and a moisturizer and it promotes skin regeneration. Spearmint Leaf Oil is soothing, with anti-microbial, antibacterial properties.

Dehydroacetic Acid is a synthetic preservative.

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My final word?

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

The Esse Light Body Moisturiser is a light, a bit runny, quickly absorbing body moisturiser, great for use after a morning shower or in hot Summer days. It’s hydrating and nourishing and its scent is sweet and refreshing – and long lasting. This body moisturiser makes the skin so incredibly velvet and soft!

The price? It’s an Esse Probiotic Skincare price – £45 (€52) for 200ml. Ouch? Yep, but it’s difficult to argue against it: from ingredients, texture, scent and the nourishing and soft feeling it has on the skin. Another fact, that a small amount (for a body care product, of course) is needed, which spreads these 200ml to about, say, 4 -5 months, might sway its price on a more bearable side, though by no means do I claim that makes it any more affordable.

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Esse Body Oil

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

If the light moisturiser is decadent and unique in so many aspects, then the Esse Body Oil is, truly, in a league of its own. The Esse Body Oil also comes in glass bottle with a pump – just that, unfortunately, in a 100ml bottle.

The texture of the body oil – where do I start? It falls somewhere between a unique texture of being a melted smooth wax, a bit runny gel and finally, upon application, once in contact with the warmth of the skin – an oil. A texture quite unlike any I’ve ever seen in a body oil.

As mentioned, there’s only 100ml of this body oil – and with its price, it’s a relief half to one pump suffices, though it’s oh so very tempting to drain the skin with this body oil! I first apply one pump on my palm, then gently rub the body oil between my palms in order for the body oil to absorb the warmth from my palms. Then I “stamp” my palms on the skin, leaving the body oil to further melt upon contact with the skin and then massage it onto my skin. Just as with the body moisturiser, I use the body oil immediately after an evening shower – while the body oil does not leave a greasy feeling on the skin (upon massaging, it sometimes acts like a semi-dry oil), it does take a few minutes to absorb. If you’re in a really luxurious mood, I suggest spraying a hydrolate on the skin before and after applying this body oil – the results will be even more decadent!

While the Esse Light Body Moisturiser might not be rich enough for those with very dry skin, the body oil will deliver rich and deep hydration and nourishment even for those with very dry skin. And just as it’s difficult describe the effect and the feeling upon applying the body moisturiser, so is the body oil: visible nourishment and hydration and smooth, soft, velvet feeling, immediately upon application and in the morning.

The scent is another unique aspect of this body oil: quite lavender – fragrant upon first application, a bit herbal-like. Once the top notes settle, it’s gentle mixture of lemon and palmarosa. Delicious and long lasting.

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So, how about the ingredients?

Ingredients: Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil*, Sclerocarya Birrea
(Marula) Seed Oil, Citrullus Lanatus (Kalahari Melon) Seed Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil*, Pogostemon Cablin (Patchouli) Oil*, Juniperus Communis (Juniper Berry) Oil*, Cymbopogon Martini (Palmarosa) Oil*, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Petitgrain) Leaf/Twig Oil*, Linalool***, Geraniol***, Limonene***

Jojoba Seed Oil is an emollient, natural to skin’s sebum, it soothes the skin and promotes collagen production. Apricot Kernel Oil has nourishing and softening properties and is very suitable for sensitive and dry skin. Marula Seed Oil has a high content of antioxidants, minerals and fatty acids; it hydrates and repairs the skin. Kalahari Melon Seed Oil has a very high content of linolenic acid and Vitamin E along with Vitamins A, C. It has anti-inflammatory properties. It regenerates, tightens skin and stimulates skin cell growth. Lavender Oil has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Patchouli Oil stimulates the growth of healthy skin. Juniper Berry Oil has
antiseptic and astringent properties which make it very useful for people who have oily skin. Palmarosa Oil has antiseptic and antiviral properties. It moisturizes and balances the the skin. It rejuvenates and regenerates the skin.

Sunflower Seed Oil has a high content of unsaturated fatty acids. It is rich with Vitamin A, D and E. It spreads easily and is quickly absorbed. It is an antioxidant and a moisturizer and it promotes skin regeneration. Bitter Orange oil has antiseptic properties; it rejuvenates the skin and stimulates circulation

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My final word?

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

The Esse Body Oil is a unique and unlike any body oil I’ve ever tried – decadent and luxurious in its scent, texture and the deeply nourishing and hydrating effect it has on the skin, while making the skin so incredibly soft. The ingredients used in this body oil are also unique and precious for a body oil.

The price? Do I even dare to mention it? £56 (€65) for 100ml. I know. It’s hard to justify such a high price. It’s hard to part with £56 for a 100ml bottle of a body oil. So I’m not going to tell you that you must have it. But I will say, as hard as it is to justify such a high price in itself, the quality of this body oil (almost) lessens the burned hole in one’s wallet.

If you were to contemplate, given the pampering feeling this body oil leaves on your skin, combined with only 100ml of it and the high price, whether you could also use it as a face oil – I would caution against it due to high, or much higher concentration of essential oils compared to concentrations in actual face oils or face care products in general. You should keep in mind that body products, body oils are formulated differently than face care products, and one of the differences is the concentration of essential oils used in body care products. Of course, the other way, using a face oil as a body oil, is perfectly fine.

Esse Light Body Moisturiser and Body Oil Review

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Have you had a chance to treat yourself with Esse Probiotic Skincare products? Tried any of the these two luxurious body care products? How did you like them? What’s the highest price you’re willing to pay for a body moisturiser or body oil? Let me know!

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Esse Body Oil and Esse Light Body Moisturiser gifted to Nature of Europe by Love Lula for the purpose of an honest review.

Nature of Europe is Love Lula’s Accredited Blogger.

The post contains affiliate links. For more info, read our disclaimer.

Dec 162019
 

It’s getting colder and colder and my skin’s been yearning for oilier, heavier textures. As I layer quite a few richer textures before applying a foundation, I’ve been opting for a foundation that’s also thicker in texture but also offers more coverage with a minimal amount of a product used. The colors are a mixture of berry and golden ones. I do not use all the products mentioned in this post at once and, as always, I aim for as minimal natural look as possible.

The links for these products are listed at the end of this post.

My Makeup Routine #5

 

My Makeup Routine: Foundation

My Makeup Routine #5

My current morning skincare routine is all about layering richer textures, starting with a serum, followed by a cream or a face oil, so in order to avoid overburdening my skin with a medium coverage foundation, I’ve been alternating between Inika BB Cream Foundation and Inika Liquid Foundation (a full review of both should be available next month), as they both offer a quite a strong coverage with a minimal amount of product used. The Ere Perez Moringa All Beauty Creme acts as an excellent primer, making a foundation glide on the skin perfectly. But I still mix a drop or two of some type of face oil (either Ere Perez Blue Cypress Nectar or Oils of Heaven Apricot Oil) with both Inika BB Cream Foundation and Inika Liquid Foundation, as both are thicker in texture and dry out pretty fast, so in order for the foundation to be spread easily, mixing them with oils is a must, of course, using the trusted Ere Perez Multipurpose Brush. Also, mixing the foundations with face oils, this natural dewy finish is achieved, which is another bonus. I also apply a tiny amount of Dr Hauschka Concealer both under my eyes and on the lids.

My Makeup Routine: Eye Makeup

My Makeup Routine #5

Now that it’s colder, I’ve gone back to using the beautiful Ere Perez Eye Jojoba Pencils (full review here). They are creamy and easily blendable. Sometimes I use them alone, and sometimes I pair them with another excellent Ere Perez product, the eyeshadow palette in Beautiful (full review here). I apply a golden eye shadow on my lids and use the golden eye pencil as an eyeliner. When I opt for a bit darker look, I pick a little bit of matte brown, followed by the copper one and then apply the copper eye pencil as an eyeliner. When I opt for a bit more dramatic look (though, my dramatic look is still minimal), I apply the lightest shade from the palette and pair it with Inika Liquid Eyeliner (from Love Lola Beauty Box) – a very thin line or just fill in the spaces between eye lashes. My mascara picks these past few weeks have been the NATOrigin Mascara (from Love Lula Beuaty Box) for when I wear lighter/golden eye makeup look and Emani Mascara (from Love Lula Beauty Box) when I opt for a bit darker eye shadows and eye pencil, and, of course, minimal and lighter amount of lipsticks, as the Emani Mascara offers very minimal effect on the eyelashes, at least if you apply only one layer – just a natural day makeup look.

My Makeup Routine: Blush & Highlighter

My Makeup Routine #5

For the highlighter, I’ve been alternating between RMS Beauty Living Luminizer from the RMS Beauty Signature Set – Mod Collection (full review here), alone or mixed with just a tidbit RMS Beauty Master Mixer. From time to time, I mix the RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Smile with the Living Luminizer, and sometimes, I use it alone. As it’s festive time, and since I am using liquid and cream textures of foundation, I am using as a blush and highlighter the Inika Cream Illuminasor (full review here). The other two beautiful options I apply: the Ere Perez Carrot Color Pot in Holy – a cream blush and lipstick all in one (full review here) – and Dr Hauschka Fluid; just a tiny drop of it, I first warm it between my fingers and then apply it on the skin.

My Makeup Routine: Lipsticks

My Makeup Routine #5

If I go with a minimal eye makeup look, I go with a more color saturation on the lips, using RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Smile or Ere Perez Carrot Color Pot in Holy. I use both also when I wear a bit darker eye makeup look, but both in very small amount and “diluted” with lipbalms. For a minimal look on the lips, I opt for Joik Tinted Lip Balm (from Love Lula Beauty Box) and Madara Plum Plum Lipbalm (from Love Lula Beauty Box), which acts as a soft lipbalm and lip gloss in one.

My Makeup Routine: Almost Barefaced

My Makeup Routine #5

When I opt for my already minimal makeup to be even more – minimal, I use Ere Perez Blue Cypress Nectar, as absorbs quickly and creates, after spraying a hydrolate on top of it, this dewy almost glassy look, followed by Dr Hauschka Concealer, Then  I apply a tiny bit amount of Lavera 2 in 1 Foundation (full review here) under my eyes and on those spots that need a bit of a coverage, basically, using it as a concealer. I apply a tiny amount of a highligher and blush, and either or both Joik Tinted Lipbalm and Madara Plum Lipbalm. If I opt for a mascara, I pick the Ermani one. The application of almost barefaced makeup routine is 3 minutes, top.

In short, here is how my makeup routine looks like:

All my current routines are now more oil based, there are a bit more layers, so I opt for foundations which can achieve stonger coverage with less amount of a product used. The colors are gold, copper and berry.

For some of the products I’ve already posted a full review and some will be reviewed soon, so make sure you check back.

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How have you been adapting your makeup routine to the festive season? Which color combinations have you been feeling lately? Let me know!

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For more information on the brands, mentioned in this post, please visit their dedicated brand pages:

– Inika
– Ere Perez
– RMS Beauty
– Benecos
– Dr Hauschka
– Madara
Oils of Heaven

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The products mentioned in this post have been gifted to Nature of Europe by Love Lula for the purpose of an honest review.

Nature of Europe is Love Lula’s Accredited Blogger.

The post contains affiliate links. For more info, read our disclaimer.

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