This has been one of my favorite posts to write. In the midst of learning about/buying better skincare options in the all-natural world, Jennifer and I have come across so many products that we love. Truly. I would say the overwhelming majority of what we have been lucky enough to stumble upon has been fantastic. Also, the people behind the brands in this relatively small community are always so knowledgeable, passionate, and generous.
Jessica Ress is one of those incredible people behind a brand that we have been lucky enough to get to know. The founder of natural spa product line Angel Face Botanicals (check out our review of her products), and “blogess” over at Spa Goddess, Jessica can now add published author extraordinaire to her resume. Her new DIY book, 100 Organic Skincare Recipes, will keep you occupied for hours.
I had so much fun reading this book and trying out some of the recipes for my face, body and hair. Jessica’s main mantra is to infuse all that you do with love. Having already developed a successful line of natural beauty and skincare products, she wanted to share her insights and empower readers to make homemade remedies with a few simple ingredients. While I obviously didn’t try all 100 recipes (I mean, c’mon, girl, we like to research our blog entries, but I ain’t got THAT much time!), I dabbled. Some of the recipes are so simple you could probably make them right now with what you have in your fridge; others might require a trip to your local farmer’s market or health food store.
What I love about this book is that you are getting inside information from a health and wellness expert who really knows her stuff, why certain ingredients will work for or against your skin, and so on. Jessica has taken an enormous amount of time, love and consideration to make this book not only enjoyable to simply read (and learn), but has made it super user-friendly for you to start experimenting in your own kitchen.
We will be giving away a copy of this gem of a book to one lucky reader in honor of our one year “blog-iversary” (it all started with this deodorant post…)! Enter the rafflecopter bellow by Oct. 31 for your chance to win! This is open to all U.S. Unsullied readers.
Ever wondered how to (safely) fake a tan worthy of a Floridian grandmother, or make your own all-natural deodorant? You’ve wondered BOTH, you say?! Well, look no further: today, we’ve got a Q&A that covers all that & more over on Edible Facial, the blog written by the always-inspiring and positive Sarita Coren (thank you, Sarita!). Check out an excerpt below and read the full ramblings here.
What are you using right now to cleanse and tone your skin?
KATHRYNE: I am using several products on rotation, including Acure Facial Cleansing Creme Argan Oil + Mint with Acure’s Seriously Hydrating Toner. I use this combo if I have had a particularly sweaty day and feel grimy. If I have had a low key day, I will simply use a warm washcloth and then moisturize. I have also been really in love with Angel Face’s Lavender Aloe Toner for a fresh midday pick-me-up.
JENNIFER: For cleansing, I’m using Osmia Organics Black Clay Facial Soap, morning and night. It’s gentle, nourishing and effective. When I feel a bit of build-up, I cleanse with Acure Organics Brightening Facial Scrub – usually a few times each week. It’s a very gentle exfoliant with clay and lemon peel, so it has just the right amount of grit!
For toning, I love Herbivore Botanicals’ Balance Facial Toner. It’s gentle, refreshing and smells INCREDIBLE. I love me some neroli-scented spritz!
I came across CeeCee & Bee on Natural Kath’s blog a little while ago, and my interest was piqued by their creativity, get-to-it-ness, and of course, their pretty, PRETTY all natural/vegan products. Based on the branding alone, I was ready to get on board. What really got to me, though, were the two sisters behind CeeCee & Bee, Charlene and Debbie, who wanted to make products that they could feel good about using. It’s these small steps taken by companies like CeeCee & Bee that start a chain reaction. As Jennifer and I know well, once you “know” about the side effects or potential hazards of some of the harsh ingredients in our everyday beauty and skincare products, it’s hard to “un-know.” So, two sisters who started a feel-good soap company, each bringing their own separate set of strengths, and voila: CeeCee & Bee was born. These two sisters at Unsullied think that’s pretty great.
Based in sunny San Diego, Charlene told me how she picks fresh herbs from her garden and infuses them in her products. Kind of wonderful, don’t you think? Ah, handmade goodness. For my fellow Californians, they’ll be at the Carlsbad Village Faire on May 4, and the Cardiff Dog Days of Summer coming up August 9, so catch them this spring/summer if you’re in the area!
OK, on to the products…read on for a discount code AND CeeCee & Bee’s DIY scrub recipe, if you’re feelin’ crafty!
A few months ago, I decided that I wanted to make homemade, all-natural body lotion and package it in cute little jars to give as holiday gifts. Easy enough, right?
Fast forward two months: five mediocre lotion recipes later, I finally figured out the secret to making DIY body lotion. IT’S WHIPPING, DUMMY (I say this to myself, not to you)! Just like you (or someone…on a dairy farm…) whip cream into butter, you can whip the ingredients for a nourishing body lotion into a thick, creamy body butter. I find the texture much more luxurious and enjoyable than just melting ingredients into a body cream/lotion.
I’ve finally landed on a recipe that is perfect for gift-giving, and fun to make. All you need are a few common ingredients and biceps made of steel!
Toner: you crafty bastard. You sneaky snake! For the past decade, I’ve associated “clean skin” with a stinging and dehydrated face because of you. You leave my mug feeling drier than a piece of beef jerky. You’re the bully in my bathroom cabinet.
That all changed when I tried S.W. Basics’ all-natural toner earlier this year in their Bestsellers Mini Kit (which I highly recommend to anyone who’s interested in jumping on the all-natch skincare bandwagon. You’ll undoubtedly be HOOKED. I love S.W. Basics!). For the first time, I realized that a toner could actually be nourishing and gentle while still being effective. To my old toners: I’ll never wade into your fluorescent-tinted waters again.
S.W. Basics Toner
After I ran out, I decided to make a homemade batch inspired by the ingredients in the S.W. Basics toner. This one’s a real winner for me – hope you try it out, or grab the good stuff from S.W. Basics!
Here’s the recipe:
- 1 tablespoon of organic witch hazel
- 1 tablespoon of organic raw apple cider vinegar (with the “mother” – I used Bragg brand, which you can get at most grocery stores)
- ½ cup of water
- 5 drops of clary sage essential oil
Guys, I definitely advise you to clear out your whole afternoon if you’re going to try your hand at making this toner. Though worthwhile in the end, it’s extremely time-consuming and requires constant attention.
JUST KIDDIN’. All you have to do is mix well. Add the drops of clary sage in last.