Organic Lip Balms for Dry Winter Lips

by Tiffany in Beauty

Attn: Giveaway at the end of this post!

I am sure that you are very familiar with the loads of lip balms and chapsticks that frequently appear near grocery check out lines. There are lots of choices in theory but none that are all that healthy for us unless you are at a health food store. The leading brand is full of parabans, petroleum, and chemical dyes and fragrance. Not something we should be rubbing on our lips. Sadly this is the case for most lip balms found in conventional stores.

There is also a market for these products year round. Our lips get chapped, dry, and cracked in the summer from the sun and the same in the winter from the dry air and wind. I know that ever since winter weather made its arrival here in Ohio I have been using lip balm non-stop on myself and on my kids. My hubby is also a big user, as is evident from the all the plastic tubes I find in the wash, after he forgot to take them out of his work pants pockets.

I recently tried four alternative products to the mainstream and all are effective as well as safe and healthy…all from Eco Lips. They came to us just in the nick of time. All Eco Lips products are petroleum free and most are organic or nearly organic and fair trade.

I also read online that Eco Lips has in the past had a recycling program where they take back their lip balm tubes though I could find nothing on the site currently to verify this…I have sent a long a question about that and hope to post the response when I hear back. I really don’t like using metal tins and applying lip balm with my finger so using a plastic tube is preferred, provided you can recycle the tubes.

Update 11/28/12: Eco Lips no longer has a recycling program. Bummer.

Moving on…

My fave is the Eco Lips Restore One World Lip Balm. It comes in three exotic blends and all are fair trade and organic. Restore is Coconut Ginger, Relax is Lavender Lemon, and Renew is Orange Spice (I have this one). I absolutely love the more mature flavors as opposed to the sickly sweet cherry that is so popular among the leading brand. This balm smells good and tastes good. It has become my go-to lip balm and I carry it in my purse. When I run out, I am soooo buying this one again…

Another favorite is the Eco Lips – Eco Tints lip moisturizer in Rose Quartz. I love it! Not only does it work and last a long time it gives my lips just a hint of color. It is more than appropriate to wear to the gym for just a hint of color that doesn’t make me looking like I am trying to glam up and wear makeup to lift weights in. I am not a big lipstick wearer actually because I so unused to wearing any that I feel like a clown when I do. The Eco Tints balm is perfect for me…subdued color. 90% organic.

The Eco Lips Gold Balm is the softest and most luxurious of the bunch. It feels like liquid silk going on your lips. It’s just the finest organic ingredients and no scent for no frills lip protection. No GMOs.

Last up is the Eco Lips Dagoba Chocolate Lip Balm line.  It is an organically tasty treat in three flavors – Lavender, Mint and Roseberry. I have the mint flavor. Yummy! This one is also silky soft and I love the mint and chocolate combo. Who wouldn’t???

The entire line was created by a mom who wanted a better product and started crafting them in her kitchen for her family and friends. The right person got a sample and the rest is history…it is now an ethical and healthy line of lip balms that I am happy to use in my own household.

Interested in trying them out yourself? I am able to give away an Eco Lips Lip Care Kit to one of my readers. Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received the lip balms reviewed above from Eco Lips for the purposes of this review/giveaway.

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012



Style Essentials Makeup and BlogHer12!

by Tiffany in Beauty

I am off to the Big Apple tomorrow for the BlogHer 12 conference. I have been blogging for eight years and this is my very first time attending this amazing event. My oldest is now six and about to start real school this fall. I think it is time for mom to get out more, don’t ya think? Well, I do and I am over the moon excited. If you are going then I cannot wait to meet you. If not then you can follow my adventures on Facebook or read about it here later.

In June I blogged about the wonderful products at Style Essentials and the owner Lisa Liguori graciously offered to sponsor my makeup for the conference. This week I got a box of goodies making it a fantastical Christmas in July!!!

Among the goodies are…

Truly Natural Mascara, Nude Lip Pencil, Soft Shimmer Lipstick, Berry Sweet Lip Gloss, a Turquoise Glitter Pot, a Copper Glitter Pot, Silver Lavender Eye Shadow Powder, Dream Eye Shadow, Hibiscus Flower Facial Exfoliator, and Pomegranate Balancing Lotion.

Excited to try all this stuff out at the dozen or so parties I plan to attend! I am especially excited to see how more natural eye makeup options work out for me because conventional eye makeup bugs the crap out of my eyes and I am ready to leave parties and events early just because my eyes hurt so bad. Let’s see how those late nights go. ;)

Monday, July 30th, 2012



10 Tips For More Natural Skincare

by Tiffany in Beauty

10 Tips For More Natural Skincare at NatureMoms.com

The beauty/makeup/skincare industry is a major multi-billion dollar industry. These companies rake in so much money that they can afford so spend many millions of dollars bombarding us with ads in magazines and on TV that tell us beauty comes neatly packaged in a bottle. They make moula hand over fist selling products to us that are “supposed” to make us look ten years younger, give us soft, glowing skin, and hide all our imperfections. The ads want us to believe that if only we buy their products we too can look like a supermodel. But they are not nearly so forthright in telling us that their products are full of nasty chemical ingredients that can do more harm to us than good. When you do your homework you may come to realize that looking younger in the moment is just not worth the price. For beautiful skin and good health on the inside as well we need to rediscover natural skincare ingredients and products. Your skin is your biggest organ and it needs to be treated with tender loving care.

We moms often go to great lengths to make sure everything we put on our baby’s skin is safe and natural but often times we forget this wisdom when it comes to products for ourselves. Why is that? If you really care about your health then you must make a resolve to get rid of most conventional products and start using organic and natural ingredients in your beauty routines. Here are some easy ways to help you go more natural:

1. Healthy skin starts on the inside and it stems from a healthy, well balanced diet and plenty of fluids to flush out toxins. They say rockin abs are made in the kitchen right? Well, so is beautiful skin.

2. Use natural oils and natural moisturizers that won’t clog pores like olive oil or coconut oil. You usually only need a small bit around the nose and under their eyes. The stuff that hides out in the pantry for cooking can serve as double agents in the bathroom.

3. Use coconut oil as a moisturizer for your driest spots like lips, heels and elbows. My fave is the Organic Virgin Coconut Oil Moisturizing Cream from Tropical Traditions. Use tip #8 first for best results.

4. Skip washing your hair everyday as the soap can dry your skin (and your hair). When you do wash your hair use a shampoo bar with natural ingredients and healthy oils. Try these Coconut Bar Soaps and Shampoo Bars, both can be used as shampoo.

5. To wash make-up off just rub some olive oil onto your face and wipe off with a soft, dry rag that will exfoliate your face as well. Microfiber cloths are particularly nice for cleansing the face.

6. If beauty does come in a bottle it is more likely to be a in a bottle of fish oil pills or Vitamin D3 rather than an anti-aging miracle cream. Supplementation can help us get nutrients that our food is lacking.

7. Not sure what is in conventional beauty products? Well take matters into your own hands! Make your own skin care products with every day ingredients like salt, almond meal, oatmeal, milk, honey, coconut oil, or avocado oil. They are cost effective and you know exactly what you are putting on your skin. You don’t need a chemistry degree to create beauty products of your own.

8. Dry brush your body to exfoliate your skin and slough off dead skin cells. This is an ages old practice and it really helps with the appearance of your skin to get those dead cells off and showcase the new.

9. When purchasing new products read the ingredient listings carefully and only buy products with recognizable ingredients, organic if possible, without parabens or fragrance. Check the Skin Deep Database to find out how each product/ingredient rates for safety.

10. Get some sun every day but not too much. Your skin needs sunlight for optimum health but staying out too long and damaging your skin isn’t good either so strike a balance and wear protective clothes and a big sun hat if you can instead of using chemical sunscreens. See also: Natural Sunburn Remedies.

How you keep your skincare routine natural and safe?

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012



The Easiest Facial Scrub Ever & You Can Eat It Too

by Tiffany in Beauty

A few nights ago I was noticing that my facial skin was rather dull and needed a little exfoliation badly. I thought about running out to the store and looking to see what they had but I knew I would stand there and agonize over the ingredients in the cleansers and then ultimately come home empty handed. So I looked through my pantry and spied some almond meal thinking that might work on its own or with other ingredients. I picked up my copy of the book Organic Body Care Recipes: 175 Homeade Herbal Formulas for Glowing Skin & a Vibrant Self and saw that almond meal was the main ingredient in several different exfoliating cleanser recipes. In fact one recipe was easy peasy, just a couple teaspoons almond meal and water.

I went up to the shower straight away and was delighted to find that it works quite well AND it tastes good too! It reminds me of baby cereal. I am excited to dig deeper into the book and see what else I can make. ;) In fact it spurred me to make a bunch of my own house cleaners the next day too and I want to post about that but I am trying to locate the email addy for the gal who sent me the essential oils I used in them. If that rings any bells with someone, please give me a holler!


Added to the Homesteading Link-up and Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012



Style Essentials Makeup & Organic Skincare Review

by Tiffany in Beauty

Over the years that I have written here on this blog I have rarely reviewed makeup or skincare items. I have turned down opportunities to review products along these lines somewhere in triple digit amounts. The reason for this is simple…I rarely if ever wore makeup, creams, lotions, or other skin enhancement products. I didn’t want to devote the time to skincare products and makeup application and since the world of beauty ingredients is so confusing and potentially toxic it just seemed a better idea to opt out. If I could’t or wouldn’t USE the products it seemed hypocritical to review them.

My attitudes about makeup and skincare lotions and potions began to change recently though and I am sure it is no coincidence that I hit the big 3-5 this year. I am suddenly more concerned with aging and appearance and more apt to pick up some of these products and yet I am woefully uneducated on which ones are the safest and healthiest to buy. I am playing catch up big time.

For the past month or so I have been using some items from the Style Essentials line by Lisa D Liguori. She has spent many years doing extensive research in the field of healthy beauty care products and has been involved in the industry in some capacity for over 30 years. After being disappointed in the offerings in the industry, Lisa founded Style Essentials, an online boutique to offer a truly healthy alternative. I feel confident that what I have been using from her store is safe and healthy for my skin. They are also effective and luxurious. Even with my minimal makeup exposure in recent years I know enough to recognize high quality products.

Lisa was kind enough to send me some of her products to try free of charge but before she did that she asked a bunch of questions to ascertain what type of makeup and skincare would work best for me individually. Even with my vague and surely unhelpful answers she managed to send me items that knocked my socks off, each and every one of them.

Here is what I have been using:

Pure Bliss Eye Cream – This is a very rich and soothing cream meant to help with wrinkles, loss of elasticity, puffiness, hyper pigmentation and the reversal and prevention of free-radical damage. I LOVE how creamy it is and it feels so good to rub this around my eyes, which are the first place I have seen some signs of aging. I would not have picked up something like this on my own but now that I have tried it, I love it. I like to apply it before applying the makeup because I tend to have dark circles and this seems to help with that. I also put some on before bed. 79% organic ingredients.

Pink Mineral Complexion Bar – This is a cleansing bar and it is the creamiest and most luxurious bar I have ever used. Ever. It lathers immediately and feels like pure silk. My skin does not feel dry after using it at all, which was a concern. It just feels silky. Other members of the family (like my husband) keep trying to steal it away for their own use so I have to hide it. I am also a fan of the pink color! Made of French Clay, Glycerin, and Essential Oil of Camomile.

Peppermint Lippy – Speaking of super silky, creamy goodness…this lip balm is another winner in that regard. I have never used such a silky, creamy lip balm before. I absolutely adore it and now consider it to be my new fave. I like to wear it on its own and also on top of color from a lip liner/pencil (usually nude).

Matte Finish Powder – This is a mineral makeup finishing powder that is perfect for skin that leans towards oily. I first tried it without any sort of foundation and it looked very ghost-like and made my skin feel tight and dry. Not so flattering. Then I tried it as “finishing” powder (imagine that) over top of foundation and found I quite like it. It gives you a bit of air brushing and absorbs oil. The brush is also the perfect size for just a light smattering of the powder.

Champagne Ice Mineral Eye Shadow Powder – LOVE the color! I am all for nude and barely there color and this one meets that criteria. You can use it as eye shadow, brow highlighter, and as a shimmer for your cheeks. I am kind of anti-blush because I think I look clownish in it, so I really liked this product.

All of these products served as a great introduction to the line. I would also love to try some of their other offerings such as mineral foundation, eye pencils, mascara, lip pencils, and lip color which are the other things I would generally use on those special occasions that call for makeup. There have been many more of those moments this year with my resolution to have more fun, more frequent date nights, and a surge of business trips and events. I meant to pick up some more items before I leave for Detroit later this month but the time got away from me. I am for sure going to have to place an order before Blogher12. I love knowing that I don’t have to sacrifice my health to look a little better and feel a little more confident in my own skin and no woman should have to make that trade IMO. Style Essentials is definitely one of the good ones. A++

Monday, June 18th, 2012