Ziip Beauty is a device I like to view as NuFace’s more sophisticated sister. She’s elegant, highly accomplished and adored by all. This is one of my more expensive devices at $495 and considerably pricier than the NuFace. And while they have some similarities, the Ziip and Nuface are different in many ways. The technology inside Ziip includes both Microcurrent and nanocurrent, so various waveforms to help give you a superior electrical treatment. Ziip is also a device that needs to be used with their app that syncs directly to the bluetooth-enabled device. For my Ziip Beauty review along with before and after photos keep reading and save 20% with code OBL20.
There’s at least a dozen treatments, each with its own intensity level (usually level 2 or 3 with 3 being the highest) and a tutorial that you need to follow along to administer the programmed treatment properly.
The Ziip device in my experience provides a more noticeable difference immediately after treatment than many of my other devices. The main effect I see is a plumping one, though it also works to contour, lift and tighten skin.
Do the zaps hurt?
I don’t feel any painful zingers unless I haven’t applied enough conductive gel or it’s dried out in certain areas. You’re supposed to apply LIBERALLY and at least 9 pumps for the whole face. This can of course get expensive as the conductive gels are priced high. To get around it, people have suggested getting generic conductive gels from Amazon.
Problems with the Ziip Beauty App
While the guided tutorials with the synced treatments can be very helpful to follow along, I find that the device treatment and the app tutorial are not timed together properly. The device will vibrate to signal that you can move onto the next section or repeat the movement again. When the device in the tutorial vibrates, mine does not so I’m 1 or 2 steps behind the app throughout the treatment.
Ziip Golden Gel
The Conductive Gels made by Ziip are pricey and the Golden Gel which comes with the Ziip GX device is over a hundred dollars, making it prohibitively expensive. Some don’t find this worth it and others consider it as a standalone skincare product and treatment worthy of the price tag.
Ziip Beauty’s device is FDA-cleared, which is a step above FDA-registered but not the same thing as FDA-approved. FDA-cleared means the manufacturer can demonstrate that their product is “substantially equivalent to another (similar) legally marketed device” that already has FDA clearance or approval.
Ziip Beauty also has a number of patents on their design and technology.
How many times a week do you use it?
Ziip suggests a minimum of 3x and a maximum of 6x per week.
Ziip Before and After Photos
Various Ziip Treatments
A full facial is at least 12 minutes so that is a pretty long time to keep your hand working and requires a whole lot of diligence to do regularly. There ARE shorter 2 minute treatments that target specific areas.
Ziip Beauty Discount Code – OBL20 save 20%
Use discount code OBL20 at CurrentBody (international shipping available) for 20% off Ziip Beauty.
The makers of the well-known wellness technology brand Theragun created a new skincare device called TheraFace Pro that offers their famous percussive therapy along with several other technologies. Their percussive therapy for the face works to reduce tension and relax facial muscles, even relieving jaw pain. If you haven’t experienced it, the sensation is hard to describe. Although it’s vibrating it doesn’t feel exactly like vibrations. I’d call it more like waves and the power is INTENSE. Besides percussive therapy, the TheraFace also functions as a cleansing brush, LED light therapy device, and microcurrent device. It’s a very well-designed and impressive device in my opinion. As TheraFace only launched less than a year ago, it’s one of the newest innovations on the market if you’re looking for a facial device. If you’re into facial massage this device was made for you. I’ll share what the TheraFace does, what I like about it and whether I think it’s worth it
6 Functions in 1 Device
Relieves tension in face, jaw, neck, and head. Reduces minor facial muscle pain. 3 mm of amplitude. This is the facial massage function that makes the device so unique.
The device comes with 3 interchangeable nodes for a variety of massage experiences – a flat node, pointy node and micropoint node.
2. Microcurrent Ring
Firms and tightens skin. Improves muscle tone in face/neck. Gentle stimulation helps firm and plump for youthful glow.
3 intensity levels
Comes with conductive gel.
3.-5. LED Light Ring (3 modes)
Red Light Therapy mode for anti-aging
Blue Light Therapy mode for acne
Red + Infrared Light Therapy mode that also includes a warming sensation
6, Cleansing Ring
Last but not least it’s also a silicone cleansing device. This is apparently the first device to combine percussive-based therapy with cleansing to enhance removal of pore-blocking debris and dead skin.
What I Like About the TheraFace
Switching out the attachments is seamless because they’re magnetic. I feel like I’m using a Dyson for my face.
There are 3 intensity levels for the percussive therapy and microcurrent, so you can choose how strong you want each treatment to be.
With the LED light ring you choose between the three light therapy modes of red, blue and red+infrared with the press of a button. Many LED masks only offer red light so this is above and beyond to me.
What’s very cool about this device is you can combine the percussive therapy with a couple of their functions to get 2 treatments in one.
LED light ring + percussive therapy
Cleansing ring + percussive therapy
I so appreciate that the device comes with a chic dock to store your device upright when you’re not using it.
It has a very modern design – I have the white but the black looks incredibly sleek too.
It’s a small detail, but I also appreciate that it shows you the exact % of battery remaining. Again, doesn’t make a huge difference but it’s a thoughtful detail.
What Is Percussive Therapy?
While Theragun’s proprietary percussive therapy is defined as having a special combination of frequency, amplitude and torque with 16mm of muscle depth, the TheraFace PRO was specially designed to have an amplitude at 3mm muscle depth to make it suitable for facial muscle relaxation. (Theragun should not be used on the face.)
The device comes with 3 nodes for facial massage that you can switch in and out:
Flat: General use for the entire face, neck, and chest
Cone: More precise treatment for targeted areas such as around the eyes, smile lines, and pressure points
Micropoint: Maximizes circulation in larger areas such as the forehead, cheeks, and chest
Amplitude and torque is unfamiliar territory, but I have to say percussive therapy is a completely new sensation for me and feels very different from anything I’ve used on my face before. I can feel the muscle tension melting away when I use TheraFace. I particularly love using it on the jaw area because I hold so much tension there and grind my teeth at night.
If you don’t have a microcurrent or LED device already, then I think the number of skincare technologies that are combined into this one sleek device is worth the price.
You actually get a lot more bang for your buck by opting for one device that has it all versus buying a separate NuFace, LED mask and cleansing device, which go for up to hundreds of dollars each.
If you already own a microcurrent and LED light therapy device, then I don’t think the TheraFace would be worth it because you’re essentially buying just a percussive therapy device or percussive therapy+cleansing device.
If you’re trying to decide between a $400 full face LED mask OR the TheraFace then I think you would benefit more from this all-in-one device, even though a full face LED mask has its own perks.
The TheraFace Pro’s microcurrent feels just as advanced as my NuFace, so if you were already going to shell out hundreds for a microcurrent device, then this gives you plenty more technology.
I don’t believe anyone actually needs tools like these in their skincare routine to achieve healthy skin, and I don’t think people should look to them as an answer to their skin woes. Tools are simply a fun addition if you want to enhance your existing routine, you’re highly interested in preventative skincare or you just like to have the latest technology at your fingertips.
I was asked by a member of the OBL community to review the Medicube, so I went out into the World Wide Web (Amazon) to purchase the Age R Ussera Deep shot. It’s a popular Korean skincare device that has a strong social media presence and plenty of influencers raving about it. But is the Medicube Age R Ussera Deep Shot actually worth it and does it make sense for you? First of all, Age R Ussera is not very accessible at $435 but they do often have sales that will bring it down to the mid $300s range and their conductive gel is around $25. It’s also not a Microcurrent device in case that’s what you’re thinking. Read on for my Medicube review.
There are some pretty big cons to this device for me, but if you’re committed you’re committed. Medicube Age R Ussera Deep Shot (why the overly complicated name!) features two technologies:
Ultrasound – sends ultrasonic wave energy
High Frequency – generates heat deep in the skin
Remember, these are not electrical currents so it’s not a ZAP feeling like the NuFace. Instead you’ll feel a warming sensation. Be careful not to give the same area consecutive “shots” because you’ll overheat the area which will be painful and probably damaging.
The main function of the Medicube Age R Ussera Deep Shot is to stimulate collagen production.
Vaguely put, its goal is to give you healthier and better looking skin.
The concerns it can help most with are sunkenness and sagging.
I’m unsure about the long term effect of using this device and am hesitant to recommend it.
But the immediate effects I see after a treatment is more toned skin.
What I find annoying about the device is how you need to manually press the “shot” button 80 times for a full treatment and each time you press it, there is a continuous beeping noise that only stops once the “shot” is complete. So I have nonstop beeping by my ears for several minutes.
I also find it tedious having to count 80 shots and wish the device would just work automatically for however long it takes to give you 80 shots.
Versed skincare is budget friendly clean beauty line that likes to describe themselves as the cleanest drugstore skincare brand. They have some interesting skincare products so I’m excited to finally share my review on this widely accessible range. Versed offers cleansers, moisturizers, serums, toners, eye care, masks, peels and spot treatments as well as retinol body lotion, most of which are under $20. Where can you buy Versed? Versed is at Target and Amazon but not ULTA. Pour yourself a glass of vino and read on for my Versed review.
If you’re wondering who started Versed, their parent company is a corporation called Clique Brands, which owns six digital publications including the popular Who What Wear and The Thirty.
It’s no surprise that for a relatively new brand, Versed has the funds to create on-trend skincare products regularly. You’ll see this with their popular retinol body lotion and acne body mist which solve people’s pain points. Note that some products contain phenoxyethanol as the preservative.
Having caught the uglies this winter, I was in desperate need of a new resurfacing mask to slough away my dead skin cells and bring back glowy skin. The Versed Instant Resurfacing Mask has such a fun jell-O consistency – it feels like I’m applying literal jelly onto my skin. There’s a very slight tingling sensation indicating to me that it’s working.
For under $18 I think you get a lot of bang for your buck – Doctor’s Visit Instant Resurfacing Mask has:
lactic acid 2%
glycolic acid 2%
salicylic acid 0.15%
pineapple and papaya enzymes 1.2%
So you’re getting a triple threat mask that combines AHA, BHA, and enzyme exfoliation to fight hyperpigmentation and boost cell turnover. The addition of salicylic acid is great for acne-prone and acneic skin too.
The new Versed Guards Up Daily Mineral Sunscreen is a creamy yet lightweight sunscreen with a subtle tint to offset any white cast. Note that it’s not meant to function as a tinted sunscreen and does not provide any coverage other than a subtle blurring effect. It has a natural finish that’s neither matte nor dewy and spreads evenly which can sometimes not be the case for lightweight-consistency sunscreens.
There’s no scent to it other than a natural oat-like scent from its ingredients. Overall, I’m enjoying this sunscreen and love the packaging. Versed Mineral Sunscreen contains:
The oil cleansing method, also known as OCM and double cleansing method, is the standard cleanse that dermatologists recommend doing every evening. If you’ve spent any time on the beauty side of social media, oil cleansing isn’t anything new to you. The double cleanse is touted as THE way to cleanse no matter your skin type. But if you’re wondering what oil cleansing or double cleansing means, how to oil cleanse and why, then keep on reading.
What is Oil Cleansing?
Oil cleansing is based on the principle that like dissolves like. Our skincare products, makeup and sunscreen can all contain oil. Applying oil allows for a more effective way to remove dirt and oil buildup on your skin.
Oil cleansing is great for dry skin, oily skin, acne-prone skin, breakouts and sensitive and reactive skin.
Many people notice that after they start oil cleansing nightly, their skin looks healthier and even glows.
I didn’t start oil cleansing until I was in my 20s and that’s because I started really investing my time and energy into taking care of my skin. But I honestly wish I had learned to oil cleanse during high school and college. If I had started taking better care of my skin at an earlier age, my skin might be in even better shape today!
How to Oil Cleanse
Oil cleansing should not be the sole way you cleanse your skin. It’s done as the first step in the double cleansing method:
Step 1: Oil cleanse
Step 2: Water-based cleanse (gel cleanser)
If you’re only oil cleansing then the likelihood of debris and oil remaining in your pores is high. That’s why you should be using a traditional water-based or gel cleanser after using an oil cleanser each and every time.
There are a number of ways you can oil cleanse. As each oil cleansing product is formulated differently, you should first check how the company advises you to apply AND remove their product. For instance, some oil cleansers are able to be rinsed off with just water while others need manual removal with a damp washcloth.
1. Apply to dry or damp skin
2. Massage the oil into your skin
3. Wait for a minute or two to allow all those good ingredients to get to work
4. Wash off with warm water or a damp washcloth (depends on product formulation)
I know you’re going to want to remove the oil as soon as you rub it around, but I highly recommend letting it sit for a while if you can spare a few minutes! Cleansing oils are usually made of wonderful skin-beneficial ingredients and it’s a waste to remove them immediately. Let your skin soak it up!
Benefits of Oil Cleansing
There are so many benefits to oil cleansing. If you can commit to properly cleansing your skin with the double cleansing method, you will never be able to go back to basic cleansing.
Sure, we all have those days when we’re too tired to cleanse, let alone double cleanse, but I just want to emphasize how important cleansing is in your skincare routine. Nothing you do afterwards matters, if you haven’t properly cleansed your skin.
Effectively removes makeup, sunscreen, dirt and debris
Addresses skin issues like breakouts, blackheads, dry skin
Doesn’t strip away the skin’s natural oils during cleansing
Reduces inflammation and soothes sensitive / reactive skin
Helps oily skin stop overproducing oil
Certain oils are deeply purifying and can clear clogged pores
Restores a damaged skin barrier
You might be terrified of using an oil cleanser if you have already oily or acneic skin, but DO NOT BE. Even oily skin benefits from healthy oils. In fact, using an oil cleanser can help train your skin’s tendency to over-produce oil.
Same for acneic skin. Oils like Black Cumin Seed are powerfully purifying and can help clear your pores without any harsh side effects.
If your skin barrier is damaged, oils can help replenish and fortify it. Skin barrier is usually damaged by the overuse of products or using the wrong products. By helping the good stay in and keeping the bad out, your skin is able to gradually improve over time.
Augustinus Bader is a prestigious skincare line founded by world leading stem specialist Augustinus Bader. Founded in 2017 and based in London, the clean skincare line is backed by over 30 years of research in cellular repair and his deep understanding of stem cell biology, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Each product contains their patented technology TFC8 – the renewing complex of natural amino acids, high-grade vitamins and synthesized molecules naturally found in the body. Augustinus Bader skincare products combine sustainably sourced botanicals with bioengineered clean actives. This is a luxury brand with their famous cream priced at nearly $300, so definitely not for those on a budget.
It’s no surprise that celebs enjoy this brand. Augustinus Bader is loved by Jennifer Aniston, Victoria Beckham, Sandra Oh, Dakota Johnson, Hailey Bieber, and Margot Robbie and probably many more. In fact, it’s even referred to as the Birkin bag of skincare. I’ve even seen it carried at Swiss facial studios.
I naturally was curious as to who Augustinus Bader is and I’m not going to lie, I thought he was a woman all this time. Germany-based Professor Augustinus Bader is a globally recognized biomedical scientist and physician as we as expert in the field of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. He works at the University of Leipzig where he lives with his family.
TFC8 aka Trigger Factor Complex’s patented technology is made of over 40 ingredients and inspired by over 30 years of research, innovation and clinical study. TFC8 kicks your cells into repair mode and nourishes and protects the skin.
The technology guides key nutrients and powerful natural ingredients to the skin, creating and supporting an optimal environment for cellular renewal. The adaptive skincare is capable of addressing individualized concerns like fine lines and wrinkles, redness, hyperpigmentation, cellulite, stretch marks, and damage caused by external stressors. TFC8 works to train the skin for the long-term so that it looks and feels healthier, firmer, stronger, and more even over time.
Augustinus Bader offers four different types of their face cream depending on your skin type. I tried The Rich Cream which is formulated for dry skin. This is a silky cream that honestly does not feel all that heavy to me and its richness really comes from the oil content. When I think of heavy creams this one doesn’t feel like the them in the traditional sense. It goes on like velvet, melting into the skin and leaving a bit of a shiny finish from the oils. If you’re looking for a matte moisturizer, skip Augustinus Bader The Rich Cream. I do definitely notice softer, more supple skin from using this cream.
Founder Daisy Jing created her own skincare line Banish, because of her personal struggle with severe cystic acne. Even if you don’t suffer from acne, it’s often these highly targeted skincare lines that serve to solve a problem that are truly formulated to be efficacious. Banish Acne Scars is a brand on a mission to banish much more than just acne scars but to also banish the self-doubt, self-loathing and sense of unworthiness that too often comes with “bad skin.” Read on for my Banish Acne Scars review on the Banisher 2.0, Banish Serum and Defender SPF 50 sunscreen! This post is sponsored by Banish but all thoughts are my own.
Facetheory is a clean and affordable skincare line that reminds me of The Ordinary with its focus on clinical actives, percentages of ingredients and simplified formulas. The brand is originally from the UK but are widely accessible in the US either by their US website or Amazon store. They have a very extensive range of products as well to suit all skin types and concerns. I first tried their Vitamin C serum and more recently their face moisturizer. Read on for my Facetheory review.
Things I Like About Facetheory
365 day guarantee: This is the most generous risk free offer I’ve seen as it usually isn’t more than 30 or 60 days!
B Corp certified
Sustainable and biodegradable packaging
Delivers to 100 countries
Prices range from $12-$32
Leaping Bunny and PETA approved
Facetheory Regena C20 Vitamin C Serum
The Facetheory Vitamin C serum contains 20% Ethyl Ascorbic Acid (they also have a 30% option too) and Ferulic acid derived from rice bran. I’ve used this on and off for over a year as a daytime serum.
The Facetheory Vitamin C serum is an oil serum so if you prefer a water based non-oily product, skip Facetheory. If you don’t mind an oil product as your Vitamin C serum, this is a strong product that I don’t find irritating.
If tightening, lifting, and plumping is in your skin goals, then Tripollar Radiofrequency devices might be the skin technology you want to add to your skincare regimen. The multi-radiofrequency works by delivering focused RF energy into the right layers of the dermis, accelerating the natural production of collagen and elastin. If you’ve gotten a Radiofrequency facial in an aesthetic clinic before, Tripollar is the at-home version of this professional treatment. If you’re wondering between the NuFace and Tripollar, they are totally different in that NuFace “works out” your facial muscles while Tripollar tightens your skin. Tripollar can be very pricey at over $600, so it’s worth catching a sale. During Cyber Week the Stop X is 50% off over at their website.
When Radiofrequency waves interact with the skin, they convert into heat. They target the deep layers of the skin, warming them up, which then promotes natural collagen production.
Multi-Radiofrequency technology means that multiple fréquences work simultaneously in one area to actively target multiple layers of the dermis. As a result, more collagen and elastin fibers regenerate in a shorter amount of time.
The Thermal Mapping algorithm controls the heating process by continually sampling the tissue temperature in five different thermal points on the user’s face.
It’s able to build a personal Thermal Map, calculating the most accurate temperature for effective treatment in the specific treated area.
A Conductor Gel is Required
Similar to the NuFace, you need to use a conductor gel for the Tripollar device to be effective.
It Needs to Be Plugged in to Work
One downside to the Tripollar Stop X is that it needs to be plugged into a wall outlet to work. This makes your mobility limited while using the device.
How Many Times A Week?
Stop X should be used 2-3 times a week for 6-8 weeks. After that it can be used 2-4 times a month in order to maintain the results.
How Long Is Each Session?
Each session should take you 15-20 minutes so you do need to set aside a decent chunk of time whenever you use the Tripollar device.
How to Use Tripollar?
Focus on 3 treatment areas of your face: left cheek, right cheek and forehead. Apply a thin layer of the conductor gel.
Move the device in a very slow circular motion on a small part of the treatment area.
Once the orange indicator light illuminates followed by a ‘beep’ sound, you have reached the optimal temperature. Continue the same slow circular motion for a few seconds, then gradually enlarge the movements in the treatment area.
Do this for 5 minutes. Then repeat in the next treatment area.
Who Shouldn’t Use Tripollar
While Tripollar is safe for all ages over 18, race and skin color, if you’re pregnant, use fillers or Botox or have a history of cancer you should not use Tripollar. Please check the Tripollar website for the full list.
What Does Tripollar Feel Like?
The metal nodes feel very warm as you glide them across. It can sometimes feel very hot. There’s absolutely no pain or downtime involved.
Famously founded by Michelle Pfeiffer, Henry Rose is a unisex clean perfume brand that’s as safe and transparent as possible. Michelle Pfeiffer swore off conventional fragrance when her kids were born over a decade ago, and in 2019 launched Henry Rose with five perfumes. Henry Rose is the only line of clean perfumes to be formulated with the Environmental Working Group. They’re also 100% transparent in disclosing every ingredient used and hold multiple certifications that ensure quality and safety. Henry Rose is EWG Verified (stands for health, transparency, and good manufacturing practices) and Cradle to Cradle Certified (one of the world’s most rigorous product sustainability standards). So toss aside your Jo Malone and read on for the best and worst Henry Rose perfumes!
I purchased the Henry Rose Discovery Set, which comes with 10 perfume samples.
Overall, I found Henry Rose to be a true genderless unisex type of clean fragrance line, with certain scents leaning more masculine and others feminine. As with any line, there are some real standouts and others that get lost in the crowd.
The full size Henry Rose perfumes come in a minimalistic no-frills transparent glass bottle with black cap. They also lean slightly on the expensive side for a clean perfume made with synthetics.
Jake’s House is a perfectly unisex scent that’s neither too masculine nor too feminine. It goes right down the middle and would work just as well for a man as it would for a women.
Henry Rose Jake’s House is clean, easy, and soft with a honeyed characteristic to its floral and musky notes. There is an everyday type of scent and could easily be worn on its own and layered with other perfumes without becoming offensive.
Top notes: fresh marine
Middle notes: Neroli, Peony, Jasmine
Bottom notes: Ambroxan, Musk
If you love florals but don’t want something too sweet or juvenile, I think Flora Carnivora is a great scent to check out. This is Henry Rose’s only true floral scent and one of their most recent new launches from 2021.
Flora Carnivora is much more feminine leaning and floral but not in a bright, uplifting way – this is a grounding and sultry floral with earthy and musky characteristics that feels grown up. You have the fragrant jasmine, tuberose and orange flower at the heart of the perfume, but deepened with vetiver oil, cedarwood, opulent musks and Amber. I find it to be a softly rich and sultry white floral scent.
Update: Flora Carnivora just won an Allure Best of Beauty 2022 award for best clean fragrance!
I’m such a sucker for vanilla scents and Torn is no exception. This is a yummy vanilla floral perfume with Rose, violet and jasmine at the heart and a base of Musk, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla Bean and Praline. I love the addition of patchouli and violet, which are scent notes I don’t find very often used together in clean perfume lines that aren’t 100% natural and include synthetics. To me this is a scent that seducts but remains playful. It’s a cozy, sultry, warm and sweet vanilla perfume that I can see most vanilla lovers enjoying or millennials upgrading to a more sophisticated vanilla scent. I cannot picture this scent on a man or on an older generation of women.
I don’t consider Dark Is Night an everyday perfume as I have to be a in a particular mood to choose a “dark” and very rich earthy scent over lighter, more feminine scents, but Dark Is Night is beautiful, sexy and interesting. This is a very rich and heavy scent, and the longest lasting scent in the Henry Rose line. I spritzed this in the morning and I could still smell it in the early evening. While I say that it’s not an everyday scent for me, that could change once fall and winter rolls around. In fact, I’d probably totally want a full sized bottle of Dark Is Night for winter. The notes are vetiver, freesia, patchouli and vanilla bean, but I mostly detect just the patchouli and vanilla bean.
Worst Henry Rose Perfumes
Okay keep in mind my worst scents are easily someone else’s best scents, but here are the Henry Rose perfumes that I didn’t like. And when I say “worst” I don’t mean they’re bad scents, I just wouldn’t purchase a full sized bottle for myself.
I just can’t picture myself ever shelling out $130 to buy a full sized bottle of Windows Down. I didn’t feel drawn to this scent and nothing about it really stood out to me like some of the other scents.
Windows Down is a light floral scent that’s clean and crisp with some musk and green. The base notes are moss, guaiacwood and musk. For me, it leans a little too masculine but I’m not sure I would even care to smell this on a man. Though it’s in no way offensive and I know many people love Windows Down, unfortunately it reminds me of any generic mass-produced perfume to be brutally honest. Maybe it’s because I’ve been testing clean perfumes non stop for the last year, but Windows Down gets lost in the crowd for me.
Oh boy, Smyth. I tried hard to get into this perfume, but I just did not like this scent no matter what. I couldn’t get over how much it reminds me of Bath and Body Work’s fruity hand soaps. Smyth is a little too juvenile and sickly sweet for me, and much more suited to a younger customer. It’s a juicy Jolly Rancher green apple scent that dries down to something generic. Smyth is another Henry Rose scent that disappears into the crowd.
Top notes: Melon, Green Apple, Sorbet, Pineapple
Middle Notes: Star Jasmine, Apricot, White Tea
Base notes: Sandalwood, ISO E Super, Musk, White woods
Other Henry Rose Scents
Other Henry Rose scents were perfumes I enjoyed but weren’t exactly enamored with were:
Fog: I can see Fog entering my Best Of list Fog in the winter, but I’m not as drawn to it in the current summer. I also hesitate to include Fog in my “ Best Of” list as I know most women are partial to feminine, floral scents. This is a true woodsy scent that reminds me of Abbott NYC’s Sequoia and Heretic’s Sandalwood (which are both beautiful in their own way), except Fog has a tinge of sweetness to it that makes it a more alluring scent.
Sheep’s Clothing: Strong opening pepper note that becomes a very light musky Rose. Don’t think I’d spend $130 on a full size. This is a classic old-fashioned type of scent.
Last Light: Hard to put my finger on this scent as I neither loved nor hated it. I detected a sweet fruity scent with an underlying woodsy and musky characteristic. It’s easygoing and inoffensive, but not sure I’d actually spend $130 to buy a full size. Last Light is particularly suited to peach scent lovers.
Today I’m sharing my favorite natural winter fragrances now that the colder months are just around the corner! Instead of the citrus, aquatic, and green notes that speak to me during summer, I find myself craving darker, earthier, heavier and gourmand scents that are sexy, cozy and comforting. I have an in-depth guide to clean and organic perfumes if you’d like more info on what exactly is a clean perfume versus an organic perfume, along with other related topics. Otherwise, read on for my top picks for fall and winter perfumes that are natural and non-toxic!
I’m going to make a bold statement here and say that Bois De Balincourt is Maison Louis Marie’s best scent. It is alluring, melodic, harmonious. The layers of notes draw you in and you can’t stop smelling yourself. This sultry, warm woodsy scent is a feminine leaning unisex scent. It has a yummy factor to it without going into gourmand territory.
Famously founded by Michelle Pfeiffer, Henry Rose is a unisex clean perfume brand that’s as safe and transparent as possible. Michelle Pfeiffer swore off conventional fragrance when her kids were born over a decade ago, and in 2019 launched Henry Rose with five perfumes. Henry Rose is the only line of clean perfumes to be formulated with the Environmental Working Group. They’re also 100% transparent in disclosing every ingredient used and hold multiple certifications that ensure quality and safety. Henry Rose is EWG Verified (stands for health, transparency, and good manufacturing practices) and Cradle to Cradle Certified (one of the world’s most rigorous product sustainability standards).
sexy smoky earthy vanilla
Dark Is Night is beautiful, sexy and interesting. This is a very rich and heavy scent, and the longest lasting scent in the Henry Rose line. I spritzed this in the morning and I could still smell it in the early evening. I’d totally want a full sized bottle of Dark Is Night for winter. The notes are vetiver, freesia, patchouli and vanilla bean, but I mostly detect just the patchouli and vanilla bean.
By Rosie Jane is a beauty and fragrance brand founded in 2012 by celebrity makeup artist, rosie jane johnston. While Rosie Jane was pregnant, every fragrance made her nauseous, so she decided to create her own — and By Rosie Jane was born!
James is a woodsy amber fig scent with a subtle hint of floral. Also lovely if you want something that isn’t distinctly feminine but smells woodsy, warm and cozy yet not overly masculine. Other great winter perfumes by Rosie Jane are Dylan, which leans more masculine than James and Lake, a vanilla perfume with a hint of citrus.
Highly feminine, Vetiver Elemi is a sweet earthy scent that’s perfect for winter. The opening of the perfume hits you with bright citrus bergamot that quickly fades away. While the heart notes are holiday favorites nutmeg and cardamom along with florals, it’s the warm cedarwood, patchouli and vetiver that dominate.
TOP: Bergamot, Grapefruit, Elemi HEART: Cardamom, Cumin, Nutmeg, Jasmine, Geranium, Rose BASE: Vetiver, Cedarwood, Patchouli, Amber, Moss
Heretic Parfum uses naturally derived botanical ingredients in an organic non-GMO alcohol base to create clean fragrances that explore the unpolished version of plants and flowers. Heretic perfumes encapsulate the raw and wild side of nature and have names like Dirty Hinoki and Dirty Coconut. Their fragrances are Unisex, vegan, and cruelty-free and handcrafted in small batches at their Los Angeles studio. Heretic Parfum offers an interesting and sometimes unusual take on classic notes like vanilla, coconut, sandalwood, lavender and more.
With Dirty Hinoki, I get both worlds of masculine and feminine in one bottle, though if this is absolutely a feminine perfume. The opening of Dirty Hinoki is a juicy burst of fruit which fades to reveal woodsy notes with a caramel sweetness. Depending on the day and the weather, I sometimes get a stronger woodsy scent and sometimes a stronger sweet scent. Beautifully complex, the dry down seems to reveal a completely different perfume, one that’s highly feminine and sweet. It’s perfect for fall and winter, but frankly you could wear this year round!
TOP: Lemon, Cedar, Nutmeg, Thyme, Pine HEART: Hinoki, Cypress BASE: Elemi, Wormwood, Fir Absolute, Ambrettolide, Balsam, Frankincense
I’m such a sucker for vanilla scents and Torn is no exception. This is a yummy vanilla floral perfume with Rose, violet and jasmine at the heart and a base of Musk, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla Bean and Praline. I love the addition of both patchouli and violet, which are scent notes I don’t find used together very often in clean perfume lines that aren’t 100% natural and include synthetics.
To me this is a scent that seducts yet still has a playful side. It’s a cozy, sultry, warm and sweet vanilla perfume that I can see most vanilla lovers enjoying or millennials upgrading to a more sophisticated vanilla scent. I cannot picture this scent on a man or on an older generation of women.
For a powdery floral perfume by Henry Rose for winter, check out Flora Carnivora.
Sephora aisle staple, Ellis Brooklyn Super Amber is a simple and linear scent without top or base notes and is perfect for Amber and vanilla lovers. Super Amber feels like a cozy sweater hug and is warm and sultry. It’s not a strong perfume at all, which is why it works so well layered with other louder perfumes. The notes are Amber, Vanilla Orchid, Virginia Cedarwood, Musk.
A dark and sophisticated vanilla with a whole lot of smokiness, Aftelier Perfume’ Smoke Vanilla is a must try for organic perfume nerds. This grown up vanilla scent made of vanilla absolute from Madagascar is accentuated with the dark smokiness of lapsang souchong tea and warm balsamic wood notes of Siam Wood. Note that this is not a sweet feminine vanilla. Aftelier Perfumes is great at making heady animalic perfumes.
One Seed has been designing and making perfumes with care from their studio in Adelaide, South Australia since 2009. Their 100% natural and vegan perfumes are made without any synthetics and are at least 80% organic. Using pure, botanical and cruelty free ingredients, One Seed’s award-winning line of unisex fragrances have unique scent profiles fit for the epicurious.
Bohemia is probably one of the most out-of-the-box, interesting scents I’ve tried and I can imagine not everyone would gravitate towards Bohemia, but I actually liked it. Bohemia is an oriental gourmand that’s exotic, warm, and sultry. This is one of those rare scents that would be just as amazing on men as on women. Notes are Jasmine, dark chocolate, amber, pink grapefruit, tonka bean, rose, tea leaves. One Seed’s Solitude is also a great perfume for winter.
Irisque by Providence Perfume Co
Providence Perfume Co is a truly natural and organic perfume brand based out of Providence, Rhode Island. They offer fine fragrance-esque botanical perfumes along with perfume classes taught by award-winning perfumer and founder Charna Ethier.
Notes: Orris root, Germanica and Pallida iris, oud, deep carrot seed and botanical musk
A rich iris scent that’s musky and powdery
A more grown up floral with an oud quality
Smells like you dug up the iris with your own hands along with the soil
The rooty dark character of Irisque makes it lean masculine and would smell amazing on a man
This is the most masculine scent in this winter fragrance list. Founded by Jose Alvarez and Michael Pass and now in Sephora stores, Abbott is clean, PETA certified vegan and cruelty-free and eco-driven. Abbott sets itself from other clean fragrance brands by celebrating the vast wonders of the American outdoors through their perfumes. Their mission is to create healthy and conscious fragrances using the cleanest and most sustainable ingredients. Abbott scents are designed by two senior perfumers who have made scents for Burberry, Givenchy and Marc Jacobs among others.
Sequoia took me by surprise. At first I thought this scent was way too smoky and masculine. But then it grew on me and now I am really enjoying it, especially layered with a more feminine or gourmand perfume. It’s a bold, unique scent that’s very grounded. If you enjoy dark and earthy scents, you’ll like Sequoia.
If you’re looking for a super simple 100% natural patchouli-vanilla perfume that’s still rich and decadent, then check out Bohemian Reves’ Desert Fleur. There’s something addictive about this scent that has me reaching for it constantly. It’s also one of the most affordable options in this post.
For a fine fragrance-sque vanilla patchouli perfume, UK brand & Sephora aisle staple Floral Street makes a perfume called Wild Vanilla Orchid worth checking out. This, to me, is a sweet vanilla patchouli fragrance and my second favorite in the Floral Street line (the first being Arizona Bloom which is for the warmer months). Overall, the Floral Street perfume line is highly sweet, floral and girly, some a little too much for my personal taste. Wild Vanilla Orchid is one that I can enjoy from time to time. It has notes of cassis, citrus and vanilla as the opening, heart notes of bamboo and jasmine and base notes of Sandalwood, patchouli, orchid and vanilla bean.
Men might be able to use foot cream on their faces and still have better skin, but they also want to take good care of themselves and age well! Skin is skin and men aren’t immune to breakouts, acne, wrinkles, eye bags and bad skin days. I’ve rounded up the best natural skincare brands for men (and grooming, hair loss, acne treatments & more) that dudes will love. Some men don’t care if the marketing behind a brand is geared toward the female market as long as it actually works, and some men will only ever consider using a product that fits their masculine taste. While I believe men can use whatever skincare they like regardless of how it’s marketed, this natural skincare guide for men will feature brands marketed towards men or that are distinctly unisex. Read on for the best natural and organic men’s skincare, hair styling, hair loss, pimple products, sunscreens, colognes and more! Read more
I finally purchased and tested DIME Beauty products because of all the questions I’d receive about them. With DIME Beauty we have an esthetician-founded line of “clean, luxurious, affordable skincare that actually works.” Mostly known as a skincare brand, DIME has expanded to offer a number of makeup, wellness and fragrance products. While many small clean beauty brands have been closing their doors due to inflation and tough economic conditions, DIME Beauty is clearly doing well. I tried DIME’s bestsellers like their serums and cream as well as their Eyelash Boost Serum. I’m sharing my honest DIME Beauty review, so pour yourself a glass of organic vino and keep reading. DIME Beauty is only available through their Amazon store or website where they offer free global shipping.
Who Owns DIME Beauty?
DIME Beauty Co. was founded by Baylee and Ryan Relf. The brand was created to provide a clean & optimized skincare alternative for anyone and everyone. As a skincare and beauty advocate herself, Baylee wanted to learn more about skincare, which prompted her to become a licensed Master Esthetician.
During her time in training, her mom searched for clear and radiant skin while trying to reverse the effects of time. Soon after, Ryan landed a job as a product development specialist in the beauty industry and their business idea was born.
Baylee worked closely with world-class chemists and formulators to come up with clean, vegan, cruelty-free products that worked for Baylee’s mom as well as accommodating all skin types.
Is DIME Beauty Actually Clean?
Clean means something to different to each individual and to each brand. I always try to note when a brand uses Phenoxyethanol as their preservative and DIME Beauty does use this chemical. DIME Beauty is also not 100% natural and does use various synthetics in their formulas.
About DIME Beauty Reviews Online
I think most of the DIME reviews out there are pretty misleading. They pretty much all state DIME Beauty is “clean and non toxic” without really understanding or delving into what “clean”actually means to DIME, to themselves or to others. This is why “clean beauty” has such a terrible rep.
Also, many of these reviews are written by non-clean beauty bloggers – I see a book blog and a hair blog stating it’s their favorite skincare brand. I even saw one review stating it’s an unpaid review in the title, yet there’s an affiliate code and affiliate links once you click to read. Overall, a lot of sketchiness around their press.
Most of the articles you read online aren’t sponsored, but they’re still affiliated to the brands included, and yet they don’t all state “unpaid” in their titles. I have no issues with people promoting affiliate codes and links all they want (I do it too), but adding “unpaid” to the title of an affiliated article seems unethical. That being said, trust no one and as always, do your own due diligence.
DIME Beauty Prices
Most DIME Beauty products are under $40. Their serums are $30 and face cream $38.
Everyone’s opinion will differ but I think the best Dime Beauty products are the Hyperglow Vitamin C serum, Dans Les Bois perfume, and Wonderscreen SPF 50.
DIME Hyaluronic Acid Serum
The DIME Beauty Hyaluronic Acid serum is made of just a few ingredients, making it one of the simplest formulas I’ve seen.
It’s basically water, sodium hyaluronate and preservative. While there’s nothing wrong with a simple formula, I find that the markup is too high.
At $30 you are essentially paying for the packaging because you can find the same formula in other highly affordable brands. In my experience you can easily find more hard-working formulas that are clean, vegan and sustainable for around the same cost.
The Hyper Glow Serum is a Vitamin C + E + Ferulic Acid serum, which is the formula I most appreciate out of the DIME Beauty line. The Vitamin C content is a high 20%, and the serum also contains free radical fighting ingredients like Sweet Orange Extract, Magnolia Bark Extract, and Grape Seed Extract.
This is what I’d actually consider to be “affordable luxury” and not just a marketing slogan.
The DIME Beauty vitamin C serum is thin and lightweight with a silky feel. There’s no sticky residue or oily sensation and helps to smooth and brighten skin.
There has been no clean eyelash serum that has ever wowed me. The difference is so subtle with all the eyelash serums I’ve tried that only I could ever probably notice the difference IRL. The same goes for DIME Beauty’s eyelash serum. I didn’t notice any major difference.
Amino Acids: Collagen is rich in amino acids that your body needs to build keratin, the protein that makes up the hair. These are the building blocks of hair and most of our bodies.
Biotinoyl Tripeptide-1: Biotinoyl Tripeptide-1 has been shown to have positive effects on hair follicles by promoting scalp micro-circulation and reducing the appearance of follicle atrophy and aging.
Prostaglandins: A common ingredient in eyelash serums that often causes irritation, redness, inflammation, and itchiness. It can also darken the color of the iris permanently. DIME Lash Boost Serum is prostaglandin free, so there’s no need to worry about intense irritation or changing of eye color.
DIME Beauty’s version of a retinol alternative cream, the TBT Cream contains a proprietary blend of Orobanche Rapum Extract and Bakuchiol.
It’s a rich and dense cream that dry skin types would enjoy.
But other than the few extracts included and Bakuchiol, there are no other notable skincare ingredients in this formula.
There’s a lot of synthetics and silicones like dimethicone, which some of you may be trying to avoid. Naturally these ingredients are going to make the cream glide more smoothly and have a more pleasant texture.
For the formulation, I would say the DIME Beauty cream is overpriced at $38. There are a lot of other affordable options I’ve come across with more skin-beneficial ingredients in their formulas.
Sharing all the best broke girl friendly skincare lines! I’ve already written a mega post of the best budget organic beauty brands, but for those looking specifically for skincare brands I thought I would write an affordable natural skincare version. These clean skincare brands are budget friendly and still remain high quality, while valuing transparency in their ingredient labels and sourcing.
Three Ships Beauty makes award-winning clean skincare made with 100% natural ingredients. All Three Ships Beauty products are $35 or under, certified cruelty-free and vegan, and formulated by world-class chemists. Tired of what they saw in the clean beauty industry, Three Ships founders set sail to be the most transparent clean skincare brand out there. And by clean, I don’t mean the mix of cheap synthetics and natural ingredients that clean beauty has mostly become. I think this brand is making some fantastic 100% natural skincare products at accessible price points. While Three Ships isn’t luxury, they also don’t feel budget or “granola”. Read on for my Three Ships Beautyreview and use discount code OBL to save 20% at Three Ships.
Famously founded by Jessica Alba, Honest Beauty is a clean skincare and makeup brand that’s widely available at ULTA and Target stores everywhere. Most known for their baby and personal care products, The Honest Company has expanded to include a wide range of affordable beauty products. They have a drama filled past of lawsuits and toxic ingredient scandals, that you can find more info about online. But for people looking for safer products that are budget friendly, Honest Beauty is highly convenient.
Facetheory is a clean and affordable skincare line that reminds me of The Ordinary with its focus on clinical actives, percentages of ingredients and simplified formulas. The brand is originally from the UK but are widely accessible in the US via their Amazon store. They have a very extensive range of products as well to suit all skin types and concerns. I
Sustainable natural skincare brand Upcircle Beauty is breathing new life into ingredients that are typically thrown away. Born in London, Upcircle is vegan, zero waste, Leaping Bunny Certified, certified Plastic Negative and uses natural and organic ingredients. The best part? They’re so affordable! Backed by crowdfunding and three Shark Tank investors, the brand is now available at major US retailers like Whole Foods, Credo Beauty, Thrive Market and Urban Outfitters. Upcircle Beauty regularly collects coffee grounds from 100 artisan coffee shops to create their upcycled skincare products and have expanded to using many more salvaged ingredients
Ranging from $10 to $20, Sukin natural skincare is a broke girl’s Aussie dream come true. The Australian skincare brand offers a wide range of skincare products that are mostly around $10-$15 including a brand new mineral sunscreen launch in both tinted and untinted options
Kinfield is a clean beauty brand that wants you to live your best outdoors life with safe and functional products. From their DEET free bug repellant spray to beauty editor favorite sunscreens, Kinfield formulates their vegan line with science-backed ingredients and without parabens, sulfates, phthalates, or synthetic fragrances. Also sold at Credo Beauty and on their website, Kinfield products are safe, simple and effective with reasonable prices.
DERMA E is one the largest natural skincare brands in the US that makes affordable vegan products sold everywhere from Target and ULTA to Whole Foods and Sprouts. With everything from skincare to scar gel and sunscreen to hair care, DERMA E could easily take over your entire personal care and beauty routine. DERMA E call themselves a clean, eco-ethical brand because of their commitment to natural ingredients, the environment and giving back. Even though not all DERMA E products are 100% natural (they’re a 100% vegan and cruelty-free brand), this company offers such a wide selection of products at incredibly accessible prices.
Based out of Portland, Mad Hippie was started by husband-wife duo Sam and Dana who believe in all natural simplicity. They take responsibility for the planet seriously and use BPA-free, fully recyclable airless pumps, print solely with soy inks and run the entire facility off alternative energy. Insanely affordable and highly effective, Mad Hippie also has one of the best budget Vitamin C serums on the market.
Kinship is an affordable clean, cruelty free and plant-based skincare line that launched in 2019 by scientists and industry experts. Kinship already have a cult following thanks to their Self Reflect Rose Sunscreen and are at Ulta stores everywhere. Placing skin barrier health above all, Kinship is probiotic-focused with each product featuring their Kinbiome, a proprietary microbiome technology that supports a healthy skin barrier.
Launched in 2019, Innbeauty Project is a clean skincare brand for Gen Z that’s instantly recognizable by their brightly multi-colored packaging. The Innbeauty Project Pimple Paste is the product that initially piqued my interest, and then their Lip Glaze, and then their Slushy Serum Moisturizer Crush, until I had to try them all for myself. Prices remain accessible with everything in the Innbeauty Project line under $30 and the brand is committed to sustainability, pledging to fund the removal of three plastic units from landfills, waterways, and marine environments for every product sold. Note that this brand does combine natural and synthetic ingredients including dimethicone and phenoxyethanol. Innbeauty Project is sold at Sephora, Credo and their website.
Born in Paris, Typology is an affordable clean and vegan skincare line with a focus on actives, simplified formulas and transparency. Often referred to as the French The Ordinary, Typology is like The Ordinary’s sophisticated Parisian cousin, and she’s a little more expensive. The B Corp certified brand uses natural and vegan formulas are trimmed down to only what’s essential (yes they are free from Phenoxyethanol too). The entire line is French made with partner laboratories in Bergerac, Aix en Provence and Compiègne. For a relatively new brand, Typology already has a line of a bajillion products with a wide variety of skincare, natural sunscreens, makeup, hair care, scalp care, and body care. I mean they even have self tanner, tinted lip oils and lip plumping serums.
100% natural and plant-based beauty brand BYBI puts ingredients and the environment first. They use climate conscious packaging and ingredients as well as low-carbon production methods. BYBI’s prices are ultra affordable with most products under $20 and their packaging as chic as ever.
True Botanicals is a luxury organic skincare brand that’s endorsed by quite a few celebs like Olivia Wilde and Brooke Shields. Founder Hillary Peterson started True Botanicals after being diagnosed with thyroid cancer and now manages a mostly female team up in Northern California. The entire True Botanicals is Made Safe Certified so customers can be rest assured their products are third party vetted and approved. After experiencing the line I can confirm that this brand doesn’t seem to cut the usual corners when it comes to the quality of their products. Getting certifications is wildly expensive and not using cheap filler ingredients like so many brands do these days is costly. So it’s no surprise that this line is priced on the luxury end with many products costing over $100. I tried True Botanicals Chebula line and am sharing my thoughts in this True Botanicals review.
Note that Unilever owns a minority stake in True Botanicals. They are one of the first brands in the world to use Chebula, a breakthrough, bioactive antioxidant that visibly fights five signs of aging. This ingredient is so unique that it’s called a cascading antioxidant, meaning that it doesn’t lose its potency on your skin – it works hour after hour to help fight free radicals that can lead to skin aging.
The True Botanicals face oil is rich in ceramides, fatty acids and antioxidants and works to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and increase hydration levels. The formula features 14 easily absorbable seed oils, algae extract and astaxanthin and a natural scent from jasmine, neroli, and rose. It has a bright orange hue and a medium weight consistency that’s great for the winter months.
Hemp, Pumpkin, & Grape Seed Oils
Algae Extract + Astaxanthin
Certified Nontoxic (MADE SAFE)
Naturally Scented With Sandalwood, Helichrysum, And Cypress
My favorite from the Chebula line is the Chebula Active Serum. This is supremely hydrating and has an amazing luxurious texture and consistency. Instead of water, the serum begins with a base of organic green tea leaf extract, aloe Vera juice and Neroli Flower distillate. I feel that this is an effective serum if lasting hydration is your goal.
The True Botanicals Chebula Cream is a fun pink hued, airy whipped cream that feels like whipped jar of moussy frosting. It has a subtly resinous, woody yet sweet scent. This has probably been one of my favorite moisturizer finds of the year and I’m not usually taken by moisturizers as they all look and feel similar after nearly a decade of testing clean beauty. I actually find myself eager to grab this one and use it when it’s time for my moisturizer step. Chebula Cream feels light and weightless on the skin though I wouldn’t necessarily categorize it as a lightweight moisturizer (it leans more medium weight). The scent is calming and relaxing, not overpowering yet definitely present.
The True Botanicals line is on the expensive end with most skincare products priced above $100. With all their celebrity endorsements and heavy emphasis (aka spending) on celebrity marketing, the line seemed a tad gimmicky at first, but I did find their products up there in quality and formulation. If money were just a number, I would repurchase their Chebula Cream and Chebula Serum. I’m also looking to incorporate more retinol into my routine and will be trying out their Vitamin A products along with their sunscreen with spring around the corner, so stay tuned!
Welcome to the ULTIMATE guide to clean, natural and organic perfumes and fragrance! From 100% natural perfumes to clean perfumes that include synthetics and top notes to dry downs, it’s easy to get confused in the rapidly growing world of natural non-toxic perfumes. The natural fragrance industry has grown significantly in recent years with socially conscious, niche perfume brands opting for cleaner and vegan formulations. Top clean fragrance brands like Sana Jardin and Maison Louis Marie are revered names and The 7 Virtues and Heretic Parfum can be found in the aisles of Sephora stores. Even Michelle Pfeiffer, who swore off wearing conventional fragrance a decade ago, launched her own clean fragrance brand, Henry Rose. But which are the healthiest perfumes? Which clean perfumes are long lasting? This 2023 organic perfume guide will help you navigate the best natural perfumes, discover which clean fragrance scents might be right for you, and provide a more in-depth understanding of non toxic perfumes. So toss aside your toxic Chanel perfume and read on.
Olfactory senses are the only place in the human body where the central nervous system comes into direct contact with the environment…. In other words, before we know we are in contact with a smell, we have already received and reacted to it.
– From the book Essence and Alchemy: A Natural History of Perfume by natural perfumer Mandy Aftel
Out of all five senses, it’s our sense of the smell that has the strongest connection to memory. A scent can instantly transport you to a specific time and place. The smell of vanilla wafers instantly takes me back to being dropped off at the babysitter’s as a 5 year old. Now that I’m an adult, scent is another form of self-expression, but mostly a form of self-care and healing. It has been a long journey (nearly a decade) into the world of clean fragrance, and it’s with great pleasure that I write this guide.
A lot of natural perfume articles on the web don’t differentiate between top clean fragrance scents that are 100% natural & organic and ones that use synthetics, choosing instead to lump them all under the umbrella term of “non-toxic clean perfumes.” For those that actually need the most natural perfumes due to health reasons (or simply get a headache from synthetics), using the word “non-toxic” for non-100% natural perfumes is misleading.
In this clean fragrance guide I’ll be covering the following eight topics:
What is a Natural perfume vs. Clean perfume?
What are safe synthetics?
Why aren’t clean perfumes long lasting?
What’s the difference between a perfume oil & perfume spray?
Basic perfume terms
Best 100% natural and organic perfume brands
Best clean perfume brands (with synthetics)
OBL personal favorite fragrances
I’ve also enlisted the help of Providence Perfume Co. owner and award-winning botanical perfumer Charna Ethier for an industry expert’s insight and advice.
If you’d like to skip to the list of best natural and clean perfume brands, scroll down towards the bottom of the post. I’m continuously trying more natural perfumes, so be sure to check back here regularly for updates. Fragrance is such a personal thing, so while this guide is meant to point you in the right direction, the best way to know if a perfume is right for you is to actually try it. Most clean fragrance companies offer sample vials for purchase or discovery sets that include a variety of their top non toxic fragrances.
What is a Natural Perfume VS Clean Perfume?
There are two main categories of natural perfumes in clean beauty. On one hand, you have 100% natural and organic perfumes without any synthetics included. And on the other hand, you have clean perfumes that combine both natural and synthetic ingredients. Each one caters to different types of consumers and needs.
Clean perfumes that include synthetics will have more similarities to conventional fragrance. So if you’re a diehard conventional fragrance lover, but still want to try to choose cleaner options, then clean perfumes with synthetics will be the easiest transition for you.
100% natural and organic perfume brands are staunchly against putting any type of synthetic, whether it’s deemed a “safe synthetic” or not, in their products. The potential health risks of these synthetics are too great for organic perfume houses to ever use. Organic perfume brands do not formulate using synthetics, petrochemicals, fragrance oils, dyes, parabens, pthathlates or chemical fragrances.
You have two very different company philosophies within the same industry.
I chatted with Providence Perfume Co owner & master botanical perfumer Charna Ethier, who shared a few tips for discerning if a fragrance is truly natural or botanical (made from plants and flowers, not aroma chemicals):
1. Is the perfume colored or is it clear? It’s almost impossible to make a true natural perfume that’s clear as most natural essences are brightly colored when distilled. For example real jasmine absolute is a dark orange brown color.
2. Is it expensive? Most natural perfumes are costly as the materials are very expensive in comparison to synthetic aroma chemicals. If the fragrance is a bargain I highly doubt it’s natural.
3. Does it smell familiar or like other perfumes you’ve worn for years? If so, it’s likely got synthetic ingredients in it. Natural perfumes smell a little different from mainstream perfumes which are about 98% synthetic. Real sandalwood smells nothing like synthetic sandalwood, same for rose and jasmine. The real flower smells different from the chemical version!
Another thing to note about natural perfumes vs chemical perfumes is that the more synthetic a perfume the more it will smell the same, no matter what, on any person. Natural perfumes, on the other hand, tend to be more affected by an individual’s unique body chemistry and can smell different from person to person.
A fragrance is also affected by the temperature and the level of moisture in your skin. Perfume experts advise that moisturizing your skin before applying perfume can help it last longer. Fragrances also travel better in the heat during warmer months.
What are “Safe Synthetics” in Clean Perfumes?
More and more clean perfume brands are using safe synthetics in order to smell and perform more similarly to a fine fragrance. But how do we really know if these synthetics are actually safe for human health? The answer is we can’t know for certain — all we can do as consumers is trust (or not trust) product manufacturers.
According to organic perfume brand One Seed,
…The problem with this definition [safe synthetics] is that 75% of chemicals used in fragrance and cosmetics have never been, nor will ever be, tested for human or environmental safety. So we are relying on lack of data to call an ingredient safe – basically, innocent until proven guilty.
It is, in fact, quite rare for a chemical to be extensively tested for its potential health effects, and even more rare for one to be banned for commercial use. Even after proving harmful effects, it can take up to twenty-five years for a chemical to be removed from use.
More often, if there are concerns around safety, there may be industry or government recommendations for limiteduse, but no actual legislation or regulation to prevent its use.
In the fragrance industry, testing tends to be only in relation to potential allergic reactions, looking at a small cohort of people over a very short time period (usually a few hours or days), with no concern as to how these chemicals might be interfering with hormones, organs, or body systems.
The cost of extensively testing a single chemical is around $1million, which is a strong deterrent that prevents many manufacturers from investigating these molecules. Unfortunately, testing is not a a prerequisite for use, so a chemical can be released for commercial use with very little, if any, governance.
The onus is on product manufacturers to select ingredients that have a history of long-term safe use with no red flags around potential links to health or environmental issues, and ideally those that have undergone extensive testing. The reality is that rarely happens.
What’s the Difference Between Perfume Oils & Sprays
If you’re wondering whether to purchase a clean perfume oil or perfume spray, Charna breaks down the pros and cons of each.
Oil based perfumes should last longer on the skin because oil evaporates off the skin at a slower rate than alcohol. That being said, oil based perfumes have very little sillage or scent projection. Oil perfumes are very close to the skin and are a good choice for someone who likes a subtle scent. Someone would have to lean in very close to smell a natural oil based perfume on your skin.
Alcohol based fragrances have much more “scent throw” than oil based fragrances. It’s very hard for natural perfumes to rival the potency of perfumes made with petrochemicals and aroma chemicals. Natural essences are softer and dissipate faster than chemicals. That being said, one of my claims to fame as a botanical perfumer is creating long lasting more potent fragrances. I achieve this through creating most of my fragrances at an eau de parfum potency.
Why Aren’t Natural Perfumes Long Lasting?
One of the biggest complaints I see over and over again is that clean perfumes disappear too quickly. “Very poor sillage” and “zero longevity” are other phrases I hear often — it seems that regular consumers aren’t exactly aware of how different natural perfumes are from conventional ones. Natural perfumes simply don’t have the same performance as their toxic counterparts, because they don’t contain lab-engineered ingredients that artificially extend their wear. Conventional fragrance contain a ton of chemical additives that increase the longevity of a fragrance, most commonly hormone-disrupting phthalates. Their potential health risks are what spurred the likes of Hollywood A-lister Michelle Pfeiffer to forgo fine fragrances entirely and create Henry Rose.
Natural essences are super expensive, so I think some of the issue with longevity or potency with naperfumes occurs when perfumers don’t formulate their fragrances with enough essence. Mainstream perfumes cost about $3.00 to make and that includes the bottle and the box! Whereas every drop of real rose oil costs $1! My profit margin is dramatically lower as it costs me much more to create my fragrances.
If you’re choosing a clean perfume for your health, then performance is something you’ll need to be willing to compromise. Just like there isn’t a natural hairspray that can give the extreme hold of a toxin-filled supermarket hairspray, natural perfumes will not have the same performance of a toxic fragrance.
In my experience with clean fragrances, most will last a few hours and some will even last up to 5-7 hours as they gradually subside. Even among clean perfumes that contain synthetics, there are some brands that last longer than others. For example, By Rosie Jane and Ellis Brooklyn have somewhat less longevity than other synthetic clean perfumes. Clean perfumes that have more synthetics in their formula will have better performance.
Natural perfumes are meant to be re-applied, which is why perfume oils are a great option if you want your fragrance to last all day and into the night. I recommend spritzing at least 4-5 times for clean perfumes to last at least 3-4 hours.
Basic Perfume Terms
I’m covering just a handful of the most basic perfume terms in this guide:
Projection: How far away from the wearer someone else would be able to smell the fragrance.
Sillage: How much of a trail of scent is left behind the wearer.
Performance: How long lasting a perfume is
Top notes: First notes that one smells after applying a fragrance.
Middle notes: Also known has heart notes, these are primary notes that define the way a scent is described and categorized.
Base notes: The heaviest, longest-lasting notes in a fragrance, that reveal themselves after the heart notes have evaporated. Base notes are present during the middle phase of a perfume, providing depth to the perfume, but once the heart notes have disappeared, the base notes take on a character of their own.
Dry down: The final scent of a fragrance after the note and middle notes have evaporated.
Gourmand: A scent that evokes food, usually a dessert. Has notes of vanilla, chocolate, fruit, caramel, and more.
Skin scent: A scent with minimal projection (i.e., one that can only be detected when extremely close to the wearer
Eau de Cologne: least concentrated style of fragrance, with a perfume oil to alcohol ratio of only 2-5%
Eau de Parfum: fragrance with a 10-15% concentration of perfume oil to alcohol
Eau de Toilette: fragrance with a 5-10% concentration of perfume oil to alcohol
BEST CLEAN VANILLA PERFUMES
I’m recommending my top picks for a couple popular scent categories that I think anyone could enjoy! My top four recommendations for someone looking for a clean vanilla perfume are:
This category is way too large with so many popular subcategories and subcategories within those subcategories. Are you interested in a classic old-fashioned floral, woodsy floral, fruity floral, tropical floral, vanilla floral, woodsy fruity floral – you get the idea!
But, I’ll share a couple Organic Floral Perfumes that I personally love that I haven’t already mentioned in the other scent categories above:
Californian perfume brand By Rosie Jane has the most easy to wear feminine scents I’ve experienced in an entire line. By Rosie Jane is a beauty and fragrance brand founded in 2012 by celebrity makeup artist, rosie jane johnston. While Rosie Jane was pregnant, every fragrance made her nauseous, so she decided to create her own — and By Rosie Jane was born! By Rosie Jane’s No. 1 bestseller is the fresh and fruity scent Leila Lou. By Rosie Jane is vegan and clean, but they are not a 100% natural perfume brand. Synthetics are included, and By Rosie Jane discloses each synthetic they use in detail in the name of transparency. By Rosie Jane is sold at Sephora, their website and their Amazon store.
Save 20% on By Rosie Jane here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Sana Jardin is a socially conscious, luxury fragrance house. Their vision is to use clean and sustainable perfume as a vehicle for social impact and the economic empowerment of women. Sana Jardin is built on the principles of a circular economy – their alternative business model enables the women in their supply chain to become micro-entrepreneurs by up-cycling the waste products from perfume production. The complexity of Sana Jardin perfumes are akin to fine fragrances. Sana Jardin is ideal for floral fragrance lovers.
Save 20% on Sana Jardin here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Ellis Brooklyn perfumes are PETA Certified vegan and cruelty free. They combine synthetics when necessary with a high % of natural ingredients. Ellis Brooklyn’s colorful contemporary yet chic bottles with biodegradable caps instantly stood out and their fragrances are approachable and easy to wear. They also seem to smell a tad less synthetic than other clean fragrance brands to my sensitive nose.
Save 20% on Ellis Brooklyn here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
New owner Chriselle Lim is now at the helm of ethically conscious and clean fragrance brand Phlur. Created in 2015, Phlur creates modern fine fragrances that are mindfully formulated, responsibly sourced and crafted by world-class perfumers. Phlur performs closer to a conventional fragrance and has strong projection and longevity.
Founded by Jose Alvarez and Michael Pass and now in Sephora stores, Abbott is clean, PETA certified vegan and cruelty-free and eco-driven. Abbott sets itself from other clean fragrance brands by celebrating the vast wonders of the American outdoors through their perfumes. Their mission is to create healthy and conscious fragrances using the cleanest and most sustainable ingredients. Abbott scents are designed by two senior perfumers who have made scents for Burberry, Givenchy and Marc Jacobs among others. This is a unisex fragrance line that would be most liked by men, but can also be enjoyed by women.
Save 20% on Abbott here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Henry Rose’s famous founder Michelle Pfeiffer gave up fragrance after becoming a mom, because she couldn’t imagine exposing her kids to anything potentially toxic on her skin. But her desire to wear fragrance, led her to create her own fragrance brand that measured up to her standards. Henry Rose is EWG verified and was developed by luxury fragrance house perfumers from a list of just 300 allowed ingredients from 3000. Henry Rose believes in 100% transparency and discloses each of their ingredients, including synthetics.
Save 20% on Henry Rose here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Created by Belgian native Marie along with her LA native husband, Maison Louis Marie is an eco-conscious clean fragrance line balancing both synthetic and natural ingredients. Maison Louis Marie only uses synthetic ingredients in order to protect the planet from the over-harvesting of endangered plants, to avoid animal products, and to protect against known natural allergens.
Save 20% on Maison Louis Marie here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Founded by former Refinery29 editor-turned-marketing expert Brianna Arps, Moodeaux creates skin nourishing clean fragrances that accessorize your mood. Worthy Supercharged Skin Scent is made at a high 30% concentration. They’re also the first Black owned fragrance brand to be carried at Credo Beauty. Moodeux uses absolutes, botanical derivatives and safe synthetics. Eco-friendly Refills launching soon.
Save 20% on Moodeaux here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Known for their deodorants, Lavanila also has a line of vanilla-centric healthy fragrances. They contain skin-nourishing ingredients along with pure essential oils, nature identical oils, and botanically derived aromas. Ideal for vanilla lovers.
Girly and feminine, Skylar’s clean fragrances are made using natural + synthetic ingredients. Founder Cat Chen created Skylar after her daughter began experiencing allergic reactions to her everyday perfume. Skylar perfume scents are inspired the landscapes of the founder’s home state California and appeal most to a younger consumer.
Dedcool is a line of genderless and vegan fragrances founded & created in Los Angeles in 2016. At 21, founder, Carina Chaz created her company as an extension of her passion for cologne, masculine scents. White Musk, bergamot and amber are three recurring notes present in the entire Dedcool collection, which also includes safe synthetics.
Save 20% on Dedcool here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
Founded in 2013, Clean Beauty Collective has been making clean perfumes with natural and safe synthetics for over a decade with their Clean Reserve and Clean Classic fragrance lines. Clean Beauty Collective works with partners that use green manufacturing practices and chooses responsibly sourced, sustainable ingredients that give back. Clean Beauty Collective fragrances are simple and uncomplicated with strong performance.
The 7 Virtues creates clean perfumes with vegan, sustainably sourced ingredients and lab-made synthetic. Founded by author and activist, Barb Stegemann in 2010, The 7 Virtues is a socially driven perfume brand focused on helping nations rebuild after war or strife. All of The 7 Virtues natural, organic and fair trade essential oils are ethically sourced.
Inkling Scents offers vegan perfumes made of 100% pure essential and fragrance oils. Their collection of Earth Notes perfumes are infused by suspending dried, raw materials in the formula. Inkling Scents are handmade in small batches on the founder’s small farm utilizing organic ingredients from their on-site garden. My favorite Inkling Scent is Pulse, a warm earthy vanilla scent that has hints of fruitiness with notes of mandarin, nutmeg, blueberry, rose, pink peony, patchouli and finally musk, vanilla bourbon and sandalwood. Inkling Scents lasts 4+ hours.
Inspired by urban British women, Floral Street is a modern fragrance brand with sustainability at its core. Floral Street uses synthetics to perform like a fine fragrance and are vegan, cruelty free and sustainably sourced. The entire line of Floral Street perfumes are floral-focused and feminine. Ideal for floral scent lovers. Try Arizona Bloom or for a fruity summer scent Sunflower Pop. Floral Street has strong projection and longevity.
Best Natural & Organic Perfume Brands (No Synthetics)
Providence Perfume Co is an award-winning 100% natural perfume company using the finest botanical ingredients from around the world. They have their own perfume bar in Rhode Island where perfumery classes are also taught. Providence Perfume Co fragrances are Fifi award nominated, which is the highest honor in the industry. Made to the highest standards, Providence perfumes do not contain: synthetics, petrochemicals, fragrance oils, dyes, parabens, pthathlates or chemical fragrances. Providence Perfume Co has the widest range of the most natural perfumes that feel like fine fragrances. Longevity is around 3 hours with 4-5 spritzes.
Created by botanical perfumer Alexandra Bahaloutis, Strange Invisible creates 100% natural, botanical, and hydrodistilled fragrances from biodynamic, wild-crafted, and certified organic plants. Strange Invisible never uses synthetic aromas, perfume flavorings, or isolates and all raw materials are sourced or made by their master distiller. If you’re in Southern California, you can experience the perfumes in person at their store in Venice Beach, CA.
One Seed has been designing and making perfumes with care from their studio in Adelaide, South Australia since 2009. Their 100% natural perfumes are at least 80% organic and made with pure, botanical and cruelty free ingredients. Their award-winning line of fragrances have complex scent profiles that change in depth and character with each person they come into contact with. Most are unisex with a couple masculine-dominant and a couple feminine-dominant, but all are incredibly unique with fantastic depth. Try Dreamer for a sophisticated citrus tangerine scent, Solitude for a grounding vanilla or Bohemia for an exotic floral gourmand. Longevity is around 3 hours with 4-5 spritzes.
Heretic Parfum makes handcrafted fragrance made from 100% naturally derived botanical ingredients blended in organic sugarcane alcohol. Their fragrances are Unisex, vegan, and cruelty-free and handcrafted in small batches at their Los Angeles studio.
Save 20% on Heretic Parfum here (ends Oct 23, 2022 – Discount automatically applied).
California based niche natural perfume house Aftelier Perfumes creates all natural fragrances using the finest natural essences found around the world. Perfumer Mandy Aftel uses organic or wild-crafted oils whenever possible and is also the author of several books on natural perfume including Essence and Alchemy. She is also the teacher of the founder of Heretic Parfum.
Founded by self taught perfumer Olivia Larson in 2013 in Colorado, La Fleur By Livvy is an all natural perfume brand with florals at the heart of the line. Their fragrances are themed around Journeys and Travel. La Fleur By Livvy offers both 100% botanical perfumes and “mixed” perfumes that include aroma chemicals, natural isolates and synthetic musks for better longevity and sillage.
Plant-based, hand-crafted beauty line Bohemian Reves creates a handful of 100% botanical perfumes that they hand blend in their Florida studio and finish in their heavy weight geometric glass vessels. Desert Fleur is a sultry and simple mix of patchouli and vanilla, that’s both romantic and grounding. Longevity is about 4-5 hours.
Highborn NYC was created to bring you the healing benefits of premium botanicals and sacred aromatics. They formulate without parabens, preservatives, synthetics, and animal testing. Each and every essential oil and extract is chosen organic farmers they trust. Highborn’s new Defumé scent is a Palo Santo lover’s dream. Highborn NYC perfumes are light and lay close to the skin. Longevity is around 2-3 hours with 5 spritzes.
Leahlani is a Hawaiian organic skincare brand that also makes a handful of natural perfumes inspired by the lush landscapes of Hawaii. Each Leahlani perfume is made to evoke grounding feelings of comfort, harmony, positivity, and aloha. If you enjoy fragrant feminine florals, check out Leahlani.
Organic body care brand Red Flower makes 100% natural perfumes from essential oils and certified organic plants. Their perfumes are composed of the intense purity of flower distillations, dark-tree resins, bright, fresh herbs and ripe fruit extractions. Red Flower has three perfumes to choose from.
SAVE: Discount code OBL saves 20% until Dec 31, 222
OBL Personal Favorites
Here are my absolute favorite scents that I’m personally obsessed with. Keep in mind this is just my own personal taste. And now that the colder months are just around the corner check out the best natural winter perfumes here.
With Dirty Hinoki by Heretic Parfum, I get both worlds of masculine and feminine in one bottle. The opening of Dirty Hinoki is a juicy burst of fruit which fades to reveal woodsy notes with a caramel sweetness. Depending on the day and the weather, I sometimes get a stronger woodsy scent and sometimes a stronger sweet scent. Beautifully complex, the dry down seems to reveal a completely different perfume, one that’s highly feminine and sweet.
I immediately fell in love with this bright, punchy and sweet rose. Providence Perfume Co also has a Rose Bohème perfume spray, but I found it to be more of an earthy, subdued rose that didn’t shine as much as Rose 802 did for me.
Incense Water by Sana Jardin is the scent that I loved the most out the clean perfumes that include synthetics. This Sana Jardin Paris perfume is a sweet, floral with some patchouli. In my clean fragrance journey, Incense Water comes closest to my former favorite fragrance by Paco Rabanne.
I’m a sucker for vanilla and so far, out of all the vanilla-y clean fragrances I’ve tried, I preferred Lake By Rosie Jane. Sultry with a hint of tartness, romantic and so easy to wear, I can see myself using Lake everyday. The other clean vanilla perfumes I like are Moodeux Worthy and the organic One Seed Solitude, which has strong earthy top notes but dries down to a beautiful earthy vanilla.
Another natural fragrance that stood out to me right away was Sweet Jasmine Brown. Jasmine is the dominant scent of this perfume oil but you also get gourmand notes of vanilla, tonka and cocoa nib along with Musk ambrette, pink pepper and ylang ylang to add depth. It’s like a cup of jasmine tea with the sweetness and allure of burnt sugar.
One Seed is a line of mostly unisex fragrances that’s very different from the usual floral and feminine fragrance brands I’ve tried. But I can and do enjoy woodsy scents. Solitude is my favorite One Seed scent with its notes of black pepper, dry woods, tarragon, pale vanilla, ambrette seed, tonka bean, and orris root. It has the unisex woodsiness but it also leans gourmand and is warm and alluring. My other favorite One Seed perfume is Bohemia, but it doesn’t officially make my personal favorites list as I can’t see myself wearing it everyday.
Solitude is great if you usually like
Givenchy Pi, Chanel Egoiste, Replica Jazz Club, Jo Malone Myrrh & Tonka
Leahlani Pua Lei I has a strong scent memory that transports me to Hawaii and all the amazing memories I made there. While Leahlani has other Hawaii-inspired perfumes, Pua Lei transports in a way that their other perfumes don’t.
For an intoxicatingly sweet and feminine floral scent, Love-in-a-mist is an incredible perfume made of a rare distillation of nigella damascene, a flower called Love In A Mist. It also has notes of mimosa, sandalwood and sweet clover.
Moisturizers will be moisturizers, but which moisturizers feel like a much-needed shot of water for your skin? This natural moisturizer roundup is a little different from the rest in that you won’t find any rich, thick creams here. Instead, these juicy moisturizers are more like water bombs and will quench skin as dry as the desert. Think super lightweight and watery consistencies that instantly penetrate and hydrate.
Bloomeffects Tulip Dew Cream has a watery pudding consistency that hydrates skin instantly. The gel-cream also smooths and protects skin with their Proprietary Dutch Tulip Complex and a multivitamin complex of Vitamins B3 (Niacinamide), Vitamin B5 (Panthenol), C and E.
If you love sweet scents like vanilla, marshmallow, buttercream then Kinship Supermello is for you. Supermello hydrating gel cream is an ultra ultra lightweight and smooth gel that feels weightless on skin. For an affordable brand, Kinship uses a base of organic aloe leaf juice and supercharged the formula with Marshmallow root, hyaluronic acid, plant-based probiotics and coconut water.
95% organic, it doesn’t get any more natural than this. This hydrating gel-cream has light-as-water consistency and buoyant texture and is formulated from natto gum. Natto gum is extracted from fermented soybeans, packed with polyglutamic acid (PGA), enzymes, vitamins, and amino acids. Polyglutamic acid (PGA) is a naturally occurring peptide found both in our skin and gooey strings of natto. This new game-changing ingredient can hold moisture 10 times better than hyaluronic acid, increase natural moisturizing factors, and improve elasticity. Formulated with rice and aloe vera extract in place of water, this cream leaves the skin soothed and brightened with lasting hydration.
$35 (discount code OBL saves 20%)
Serum-moisturizer turns into a slushy consistency aka liquid once applied to skin The Innbeauty Project Slushy Serum Moisturizer Crush is a gentle retinol alternative product with Bakuchiol that can act as either a serum or a moisturizer depending on your skin type, season of the year, etc.
With the word “quenching” in its name, it’s no surprise that Odacite Green Smoothie is formulated to instantly hydrate skin. It feels like a literal cucumber smoothie blended together. Powered by 16 Greens, Superfoods, Botanical Extracts and Clinical Actives like Blue Green Algae, Cucumber, Hyaluronic Acid, Pomegranate, Apple, and Grape Juice.
Juice Beauty’s Hydrating Gel Moisturizer protects the skin’s microbiome with a proprietary prebiotic blend including viola flower, chia & coconut acts, fermented kuaru, American bamboo and prickly pear.
For a luxury thirst quencher, Tata Harper Hyaluronic Gel Moisturizer uses Gel Water Technology, powered by Chia Seed Water, Marsh Samphire, and Tremella Mushroom, to drench skin in hydration. It boasts 14 sources of plumping hydration, 10 sources of antioxidants, and 13 sources to smooth and soften skin texture.
For an extra hydrating and light face lotion sunscreen that’s feels like you’re applying an aloe serum, Blissoma Photonic Light Shifting Solution provides skin with a burst of potent antioxidants along with SPF 25. A true face moisturizer and sunscreen in one, Photonic Light Shifting Solution contains Niacinamide at 3% Astaxanthin red algae extract, Black Tea, Gotu Kola, Hydrangea along with oils of Tamanu, Sesame, Argan, Blackberry and Raspberry.
It has a slight beige tint that’s sheer to offset any unwanted white cast effect and has a light herbal scent that’s smells so fresh and real it’s as if you’re smelling the herbs directly. If you’re prone to sunscreen lotions feeling like they’re sitting on top of your skin (some of us are more sensitive to that!), I can almost 100% guarantee this one will not feel like that.
This pastel blue-hued water cream is nutrient-rich and weightless. Seaweed and a microbiome-friendly pre and probiotic protects skin exposed to pollution and blue light.
$54 (discount code OBL saves 15%)
Reviewing Emily in Paris actress Lily Collins’ favorite LED mask by CurrentBody! I’ve used quite a few LED Light Therapy Masks (not all though!) and I love that my CurrentBody mask is slightly more powerful than my others. It combines Red (633nm) and Near-Infrared (830nm) light wavelengths to boost skin’s collagen production. One thing to note is that CurrentBody has only one LED light therapy mode of collagen production and does not feature other colors like green, blue or yellow light. Some of my favorite actresses like Renee Zellweger and Kaley Cuoco also use CurrentBody. Read on for my CurrentBody review and use discount code OBL to save 15% here.
Lily Collins wears her mask in season 3 episode 1 of Emily In Paris, the hit Netflix show.
When I use red light therapy regularly I notice more even toned skin that looks slightly “thicker.” I guess you could call it plumper but to me thicker feels like the more appropriate way to describe it.
Red light therapy is actually well studied to provide numerous health benefits and is often used as an integral part of holistic health routines by people who have suffered or are suffering from diseases.
…red/near IR (FR/NIR) laser light (630–1000nm), offers promise as an effective treatment for chronic inflammation and neurodegeneration. One hypothesis to explain the PBM mechanism describes mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase (CcO) as a photoreceptor for FR/NIR light. Absorption of the light by CcO leads to restoration of mitochondrial induction of gene transcription. The outcome of photobiomodulation is the down-regulation of pro-inflammatory processes, up-regulation of anti-inflammatory mechanisms, and restoration of physiology.
– H. Chung, T. Dai, S. K. Sharma, Y. Y. Huang, J. D. Carroll, M. R. Hamblin, The nuts and bolts of low-level laser (light) therapy, Ann. Biomed. Eng. 40(2)
Originally developed by NASA scientists, LED Light Therapy is medically recognized and clinically proven with over 40 years of studies done. Not 40 studies, 40 YEARS of studies.
Lght therapy also helps improve immune cells, which is crucial for those dealing with autoimmune disorders. In response to the wavelengths while undergoing red light therapy, cells release pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α, and leukocytes (white blood cells) which enter the body’s tissue to promote healing. Red light therapy helps in activating lymphocytes, to boost the movement of epithelial cells, healing wounded areas quickly and increasing cell turnover rates.
The wavelength CurrentBody uses, and that is the standard for LED Light Therapy masks, has been clinically proven to heal and rejuvenate the skin through stimulating collagen and elastin in skin’s dermis layer.
LED Red Light Therapy isn’t just about collagen production and wrinkle reduction though. It also functions as a wound healer, stimulating natural cellular responses for skin repair and healing.
CurrentBody uses a wavelength of 633nm which has been shown to have the most effect on skin cells in studies. My other masks use 630nm.
And since I’m less concerned with acne fighting blue light or skin calming green light, all I really care about is that the red light works.
How Often Should You Use It?
You should do it 5 times a week for 10 minutes. The mask has an automatic timer, and since it’s hands free, you can multi-task during your mask sessions.
With red light I notice an overall rejuvenation effect, especially with regular use of 10 minutes 5 times a week.
If you’re dealing with hair loss or hair thinning and are looking for clean and natural solutions without any potentially harmful ingredients, you’ve landed on the right post. Hair loss and thinning is a common condition, affecting up to 80% of men and 50% of women by the time they are 80. Hair loss can be caused or exacerbated by stress, genetics, a low-protein diet, certain medical conditions or plain old aging. Even the way you part your hair or constantly have it up in a tight bun could be causing hair thinning. Hair loss is so common it’s no wonder there are plenty of options to restore hair growth sold on the market. Thankfully, for those of us trying to lead healthier, toxin-free or low-tox lives, there’s also plenty of clean and holistic brands tackling the hair growth dilemma. Whether you’re looking to jumpstart hair growth or keep your existing hair strong and dense, you’re likely to find a brand or product in this post that deserves a spot in your hair care regimen.
Launched in 2016, Nutrafol is perhaps THE most vetted natural supplement for hair growth. Nutrafol offers 100% drug-free hair-thinning solutions featuring high-quality ingredients sourced from around the world, are third-party tested for purity and are clinically tested. made with a patented Synergen Complex, a proprietary blend of concentrated plant ingredients. The Synergen Complex is a blend of stress adaptogens, DHT-targeting botanicals and antioxidants formulated to target the internal imbalances that lead to hair thinning and shedding, promoting a healthy hair growth cycle.
VEGAMOUR is a sustainability focused clean and vegan haircare brand that uses clinically studied ingredients that are proven to work for hair loss and thinning. Specifically, they boast results of subjects noticing up to 52% more density and 76% less shedding. All natural and cruelty-free, VEGAMOUR uses clinically researched and backed ingredients, meaning these ingredients have shown in clinical studies to improve hair growth. The serum’s four hero ingredients are Red Clover, Mung Bean, Curcumin, and Nicotiana Benthamiana. The serum comes in a dropper bottle and has the consistency of water and contains no oils, so there’s no having to deal with greasiness.
If you’re tackling hair loss, breakage, or lack of growth, The Nue Co’s SUPA_THICK gets to the root of the problem. Formulated with patented follicle technology, it targets both the hair follicle stem cells and dermal papilla cells located at the bottom of the follicle, while prebiotics (inulin) and probiotics (lactobacillus ferment) repopulate the scalp’s all-important microbiome. It also soothes a sensitive scalp, eliminates dandruff and removes product build up to reveal healthy, thick hair.
Everyone should regularly exfoliate their scalp to encourage hair growth. This scalp scrub shampoo detoxifies, exfoliates, soothes, and balances the scalp for optimal scalp health. scalp scrub shampoo infuses Binchotan charcoal to draw impurities from the scalp and hair follicle to provide the foundation for optimal scalp health. Vegetable-derived micro-exfoliators remove dead skin cells and product build-up from the scalp to support a clean, balanced, and healthy scalp.
DUO is an innovative beauty device featuring the latest dermal technologies – Sonic vibration (gentle scalp massage), Therapeutic warmth, Red Light Therapy, and Electrical stimulation (e-stim) to stimulate the scalp with a tingly blissful sensation while providing an effective circulation boost. Laduora Duo is used with the DUO Pods which are filled with nourishing ingredients. Duo’s LED red light delivers therapeutic light energy through 30 medical-grade red LED bulbs of 660nm wavelength to your hair follicles to energize and revitalize while promoting healthy hair growth and elasticity.
Hair steaming will help with hair growth by keeping your scalp healthy. Steaming is an effective way to unclog pores in the scalp, and clogged pores will hinder any hair growth progress you want to make. Hair steaming also helps your scalp get rid of toxins and increases blood flow to the scalp, both of which are important for stimulating hair growth.
Maya Chia’s Power Fol is a fast-absorbing, ultra-lightweight yet potent infusion of the most nutrient-dense, clinically-proven proprietary blend of Multiple Peptides, Amino Acids, Collagen (from a vegetable source), High-Quality Antioxidants, Fermented Minerals, Phyto-Actives and Adaptogens.
A manual scalp massager like the one made by Ceremonia invigorates blood flow to the scalp to help promote healthy hair, exfoliates the scalp by gently yet effectively lifting sebum and product buildup that accumulates between washes, helps distribute natural oils to boost hair’s luster and helps to control flakiness. Keep a scalp massager in your shower to give yourself a much-needed massage.
Evolve Better Roots multi-tasking oil awakens dormant hair follicles while nourishing scalp skin via 6 clinically proven clean actives, by activating the scalp’s newly-discovered olfactory intelligence. The Better Roots Scalp + Hair Oil is a light and fast absorbing oil that moisturizes the scalp while stimulating hair follicles in support of healthy hair regrowth, including the appearance of thicker, fuller hair, less excess shedding, a moisturized soothed scalp, and it can be applied to hair for protection against breakage while adding moisture and shine. Better Roots features Follicin, Basil Root Extract, Hemisqualane, Bataua Fruit Oil, Prickly Pear Extract, Ceramide NG, and Alpine Rose Extract.
Once your new hair starts sprouting, you want that hair to be strong. That’s when you can look into hair strengthening serums like Agent Nature’s Holi Locks, which is a strengthening, detangling, anti-hair fall serum. It contains a number of patented ingredients like:
Follicusan™: a milk-based bioactive, containing active signaling molecules, which clinical studies have proven to stimulate the appearance of dermal papilla cells on the scalp
Capixyl™: a peptide (acetyl tetrapeptide-3) that is combined with a plant-based red clover extract
Beracare ARS Hair Serum™: a natural complex packed with properties that promote the look of hair follicle revitalization and hydration of the scalp
Redensyl™: targets the root causes of unhealthy hair
Vegamour’s GRO Revitalizing Shampoo contains some of the same star ingredients of the best-selling Vegamour GRO Hair Serum. The color-safe shampoo boasts microencapsulation technology that works to deliver their phyto-actives deep beneath the scalp’s surface (in only thirty seconds according to VEGAMOUR’s website). The product itself is a dense, clear gel that lathers instantly and provides my dry hair with a decently thorough cleanse.
Organic Hair Oils
Lastly, you can also use the popular method of using single natural hair oils like castor oil and rosemary oil to encourage hair growth.
Zero waste clean skincare brand Common Heirlaunched in 2020 with a mission to reimagine clean beauty. While people were more than willing to by sustainable skin care they were less willing to go through the motions of recycling afterwards. The female founders wanted true sustainability to be accessible when big, innovative companies were falling short. To solve this barrier Common Heir decided that the solution was plastic-free, biodegradable packaging that wouldn’t harm the environment whether it was recycled or not. I’ve finished up my entire container of Commin Heir’s Retinol Serum and am sharing my thoughts today.
Each little capsule contains the exact amount of product you need, nothing less and nothing more. Not having used a serum that came packaged in this way it was a little tedious at first to have to break off the top of the capsule and throw it away each time. I eventually became used to it, plus I like the fact that the rest of the unused product in the capsules isn’t exposed to air.
I also use clean retinol products with 0.05% and 0.1% retinol, so this was my first time trying as much as .2% and found that my skin tolerated it well. I do get a sense when using it that it’s stronger than my other retinol products.
There is no fragrance and the consistency feels like a silicone-oil-serum though the product is silicone-free. It’s not quite a serum nor an oil in how it feels.
The capsules might look itty bitty but they actually pack quite a bit of product. I find it easiest to squeeze all the product out in one go then dab it on cheeks, forehead, chin and then spread.
At nearly $90 Common Heir is priced on the luxury end.
The founders make it a point to test their clinically effective products on all skin tones, including darker skin tones. They also give back to a number of organizations and have experienced growing success since they launched not so long ago. I’m excited to see what else the brand has in store for us in the coming years.
Step aside clean skincare, it’s time to shine the light on clean body care! If you’re applying body wash (and lotion) daily over every inch of your skin, it feels like the logical next step to want to switch to a safer and more natural option. There’s more organic body wash product choices than ever, including an option no matter your body concern, lifestyle, budget or age. Read on for the best natural and organic body washes worth trying in 2023.
Pai Skincare is one of the original OG skincare brands that launched 15 years ago when clean beauty wasn’t even a term yet. Pai Skincare founder Sarah developed Chronic Urticaria in her mid-twenties and experienced reactions to almost every product she tried. after four years of dealing with it, Pai was birthed from the founder’s need for gentle skincare for sensitive and reactive skin. This, in turn, meant pure formulas without any harsh ingredients, natural or otherwise. Based in the UK, all Pai products are manufactured in their London headquarters and sold in 50 countries around the world today. Every Pai skincare product is safe for sensitive and eczema-prone skin, but I’ve found that even though this line is specifically tailored to problematic skin, these are great products for non-problematic skin too. Read on for my Pai skincare review.
Pai Skincare is obsessed (in a good way) with certifications.
They’re accredited by these organizations so their claims are legitimate:
The Pai Rosehip Face Oil contains both organic Rosehip seed and Rosehip fruit extract and was designed to be suitable for all skin types, even the oiliest skin. It’s an incredibly lightweight oil with a liquid consistency that feels hydrating. If you’re scared of adding a face oil to your routine, Pai Rosehip Oil is a great one to start with and comes in a variety of sizes. This is Pai Skincare’s most popular product and for good reason!
If you find yourself a fan of Pai’s Rosehip Oil then I can practically guarantee you’ll love their Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil. It’s also a lightweight and thin-consistency cleansing oil that’s gentle yet effective. With a bit of water it emulsifies so everything rinses off easily. I love the subtle fruity scent.
It comes in two sizes, both of which are packaged in glass, and contains organic ingredients like olive, sunflower, castor, jasmine, basil, lime and orange along with organic rosehip fruit extract.
The organic skincare world is a luxury lover’s dream and there’s no shortage of the most decadent all natural face moisturizers and organic anti-aging creams. These luxury face creams combine innovations in green science with artisanal plant formulas. Anti-aging organic face moisturizers will beat your La Mer any day, period. The best face moisturizers for aging skin will contain powerful natural ingredients and actives like advanced peptides, retinol, hyaluronic acid and more. I’m also sharing the best luxury natural face moisturizers with SPF. If you’re looking for the upper echelon of organic anti-aging face creams for mature, dry or troubled skin – or you allow nothing but the very best to touch your skin – read on.
TULA is a probiotics and superfood-forward skincare brand founded by Dr. Roshini Raj, a board-certified, Harvard trained gastroenterologist who has been studying probiotics & their microbiome-balancing benefits for over 20 years. There’s no denying the woman knows her stuff. The brand has become nearly mainstream popular, instantly recognizable by its bright baby blue packaging. While TULA labels itself as a clean beauty brand, it is neither an organic nor green beauty brand — and it is not clean enough for some. They were never 100% natural and have been mixing synthetics with natural ingredients before it became more normalized in clean beauty. After many years, I finally bit the bullet and bought several best seller TULA skincare products. Read on for my honest opinion of TULA.
While the brand is not suited to my particular taste and not something I would use on my own outside of testing purposes, I was pleasantly surprised by some of the TULA products I tried.
TULA bans 1600 ingredients from their products, but they are not 100% clean as they do include fragrance with no indication of natural origin, artificial coloring and other synthetic ingredients.
Overall, TULA has the usual moisturizer, toner and serum type products, but they also like to be innovative and have some interesting product types and textures.
I initially thought TULA was priced to be accessible for the younger generation and was disappointed to find that for a brand that doesn’t look at all like luxury, their prices were relatively steep. The TULA Moisturizer costs a whopping $54 while the cleansers are just under $40.
The TULA cleanser, TULA sunscreen and TULA eye balm stick stood out to me most.
First of all, TULA’s sunscreen uses 100% chemical filters. When I first saw the gel squeezing out of the tube I wondered if I had received a product that went bad. The bumpy uneven texture of the gel looked like the product had somewhat separated, perhaps from being past expiry. But I think this is just what the products look like as it wasn’t past expiry and applied just fine.
I was also expecting a traditional gel, something more of a dense clear gel. It’s a creamy looking thin serum-gel that goes on applying like a watery serum, The mica adds a pearlescent shimmery glow that you may or may not appreciate. Upon immediate application, skin looks very hydrated and dries down to like you never applied anything at all.
TULA Sunscreen Gel is a non-comedogenic formula with skincare-first ingredients like probiotic extracts, pineapple & papaya. It has absolutely no white cast, but that’s because it uses no mineral UV filters at all and only chemical ones.
Does not contain live cultures. Active Ingredients: Avobenzone 3%, Homosalate 10%, Octisalate 5% Inactive Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Pentylene Glycol, Lactococcus Ferment Lysate, 1,2-Hexanediol, Silica, Ectoin, Glycerin, Arginine, Hydroxyectoin, l(Pineapple) Fruit Extract,(Papaya) Fruit Extract, Lactic Acid, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Hedychium Coronarium Root Extract, Triethyl Citrate,(Orange) Peel Extract, (Lemon) Peel Extract, (Pear) Fruit Extract, (Apple) Fruit Extract,(Raspberry) Fruit Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Pimpinella Anisum Fruit Extract, Mica, Tocopherol, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein/PVP Crosspolymer, Carbomer, Dibutyl Lauroyl Glutamide, Dibutyl Ethylhexanoyl Glutamide, Propanediol, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Benzoate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tin Oxide, Phenoxyethanol May Contain: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891)
TULA’s moisturizer feels and looks almost identical to just about every other mid-market moisturizer I’ve tried. It’s made of anywhere between 70-99% water, butylene glycol and ethylbexyl palmitate and costs $54 — already grossly overpriced in my book. Not sure why it needs to have Dimethicone, when it’s supposed to be skincare.
I can see why it’s TULA’s most popular product because everyone wants a face cream that feels moisturizing, has a pleasant smooth texture and sinks in nicely. It does have some unique ingredients like Yogurt, Chicory Root and fruit extracts. But I still think there are much cleaner and better clean moisturizers that are way more affordable than TULA’s.
While this eye product is a completely unnecessary product in a skincare routine, it’s kind of fun to use because of the novelty factor. This is a cooling and brightening undereye balm stick with a baby blue shade (artificial colors). It does have the subtlest brightening effect thanks to the shimmer from Tin Oxide.
It’s a slick and dense balm stick that’s not emollient, so only the slightest bit of product is applied with one swipe.
The TULA Purifying Cleanser is a true jelly cleanser. It feels so much like fluffy jelly, which makes for an interesting cleansing experience. I don’t feel like it’s heavy duty enough to use without doing a double cleanse, but it does feel pleasant on the skin. If you’re looking for a standard gel cleanser, this isn’t it.
Sana Jardin is a socially conscious, luxury fragrance house. Their vision is to use clean and sustainable perfume as a vehicle for social impact and the economic empowerment of women. Sana Jardin is built on the principles of a circular economy – their alternative business model enables the women in their supply chain to become micro-entrepreneurs by up-cycling the waste products from perfume production. The complexity of Sana Jardin perfumes are akin to fine fragrances. Sana Jardin is ideal for floral fragrance lovers.
I found that many of their perfumes lean feminine, so this is a great line for the sophisticated girly girls out there.
My absolute favorites are Incense Water and Jaipur Chant. I also really enjoyed Berber Blonde and Sandalwood Temple. Fleur De La Révolution I’m still trying to figure out what I think about it as I neither love nor hate it. Tiger By Her Side tickled my fancy the least.
Sandalwood Temple and Jaipur Chant are some of their lightest scents, but by no means boring. Sandalwood is warm and woodsy with a subtle sweetness thanks to vanilla. While the top notes are bergamot, neroli and orange flower, neither fruity nor floral is dominant in this scent.
Top: Bergamot, Raspberry Leaf, Pimento Berry Heart: Rose Absolute Morocco, Rose Oil, Rose Water Base: Musk, Sandalwood, Patchouli
Incense Water by Sana Jardin is the scent that I loved the most. This Sana Jardin Paris perfume is a sweet, floral with some patchouli. In my clean fragrance journey, Incense Water comes closest to my former favorite fragrance by Paco Rabanne. Despite the word incense, this perfume doesn’t remind me at all of incense.
The combination of Tuberose, Moroccan jasmine, narcisse and musk makes this a sultry, soft yet intoxicating scent that I can’t get enough of. The tuberose isn’t overpowering and goes so well with Lemon and Clove Leaf while the musk undertone anchors and softens the scent overall. Even though this is a soft scent that fades quickly I love it.
Looking at just the notes, this isn’t usually a scent profile I’m drawn to, but there is something special about this bright and sunny citrus perfume. Berber Blonde would be a great summer scent, but isn’t something I’m drawn to in the middle of winter. I enjoy Neroli which is why I like this perfume, but if Neroli and bright fruity notes are not your jam I can’t imagine you enjoying Berber Blonde.
I have a love hate relationship with the term TikTok viral as being social media popular doesn’t mean that it will work for your skin, let alone work a miracle. The hype is sometimes totally undeserved and sometimes worthy, but most of all designed to get you to buy buy buy. So read this post with a grain of salt (cue salt bae). If you’re curious about the clean beauty products that went viral on the educational dancing app, keep reading.
What’s more convenient than getting your grocery shopping and beauty shopping done at the same time? Whole Foods Market’s wide selection of clean beauty and personal care brands lining their aisles makes it possible. Their standards go beyond typical “clean beauty” claims and ban more than 180+ ingredients from all their beauty and body care products, including parabens, phthalates, microbeads and triclosan. Whole Foods Market also requires third-party certification for organic label claims on personal care products, as there are no mandatory government standards for “organic” claims in the body care industry. I’ve rounded up 30 clean beauty brands you can find at your local Whole Foods Market (may differ store to store.)
I recently visited the Neals Yard Remedies store in Covent Garden while in London for a wedding, and am sharing all about this massively popular UK organic skincare brand that’s been around since 1981. For 40 years Neals Yard Remedies has been making natural and organic skincare using ethically sourced herbs, botanicals and essential oils. Neals Yard is a family-run franchise and has all their products made in their eco-factory in Dorset, England. The brand has a luxury modern apothecary feel and is well recognized by their cobalt blue packaging with bronze accents. I tried Neals Yard’s Frankincense Intense line and am sharing my thoughts in today’s Neals Yard Remedies review.
If you love the grounding scent of Frankincense I think you’d enjoy this particular collection in the Neals Yard Remedies range.
The Frankincense Intense line features sustainably sourced Frankincense essential oil from the resin of the Boswellia sacra trees that grow wild on the Dhofar region of Oman. The precious resin is expertly harvested using traditional tools before being hand sorted and distilled to extract the pure essential oil.
The 88% organic Age Defying Overnight Mask is formulated to help contour, lift and restore, which makes it suited to more mature skin types with fine lines and wrinkles. I find this mask beneficial during the cold, winter months when my heating is on blast as it doesn’t dry out overnight and keeps moisture locked in underneath.
The NYR Overnight Mask is a dense yet smooth, silky mask that reminds me of freshly made frosting. The frankincense scent is subtle yet relaxing.
It contains Bacillus Ferment to firm and recontour as it evens skin tone, and Glycogen and hyaluronic acid to boost hydration. The mask also contains botanical adaptogens, Ashwaghanda extract, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) oil and Turmeric Root extract to support skin health. I like using this multi-tasking sleeping mask when I want to give my skin a break from its usual skincare routine and supercharge it at night with something different.
I love a product that makes for an indulgent cleansing ritual and Neals Yard Frankincense Intense Cleansing Melt provides just that. This non-boring cleanser is a luxurious triple-textured cleanser. What does that mean? It goes from gel to oil to milky emulsion. The unctuous certified organic formula dissolves impurities, including doing a decent job of removing waterproof makeup.
Cleansing Melt contains a micro-emulsion of natural sugars and a blend of organic sunflower, sweet almond and refined coconut oils. It feels like a silky oil-gel salve and has the NYR signature Frankincense scent that relaxes the senses without overpowering them. Overall, a beautifully formulated cleanser that works.
The Frankincense Intense Hydrating Essence is actually an essence in the true sense of the word. If you’re looking for a light liquid toner, skip this one. But if you want a rich toner, the Hydrating Essence has a secretion-like consistency without being goopy or heavy. Overall, the ingredients aren’t very impressive to me but I like that it has purified pomegranate extract and a beautiful scent. Note that this toner is not a spray and must be used with a cotton round.
I’m not one to go buy a hand treatment serum, but since I haven’t been paying the closest attention to the skin on my hands I’m glad that I’ve incorporated this product into my routine. I like that this is a serum versus a lotion as I don’t like overmoisturizing my hands. The Hand Treatment Serum is very lightweight and absorbs quickly.
It helps to firm and hydrate skin and reduce the appearance of lines, wrinkles and age spots. The formula most notably contains ribose, narcissus extract and provitamin A-rich organic rosehip seed oil.
I’ve used a few of Neals Yard Remedies candles since they use organic vegetable wax AND organic essential oils (plus I love buying candles when they’re on sale). While they’re not my favorite out of the dozens of candle brands I use, these are some of the cleanest and safest candles around.
The glasses can also be repurposed as drinking glasses, but there’s no getting rid of the logo.
Rhode Skin, the new skincare line from Hailey Bieber, launched in summer 2022 with three skincare essentials that focus on skin barrier and health. The clean girl aesthetic has taken over social media and Bieber seems to reign queen with her signature glazed donut look and slicked back hair. Her adherence to minimalism shows through the small number of products launched by Rhode – the Barrier Restore Cream, Peptide Glaze Fluid, and Peptide Lip Treatment. So really, two actual skin care products and one lip balm. Rhode Skin and The Outset by Scarlett Johansson stuck out to me this year, and I’ll be covering Rhode Skin first. Is Rhode the actual secret to Hailey Bieber’s signature glazed donut look? Is Rhode Skin worth buying? Here’s why it’s not.
Currently, Rhode is being sued by another company with the same name. The already existing Rhode is a women and minority-owned fashion brand founded by Purna Khatau and Phoebe Vickers in 2014. The growing global brand was painstakingly built over the course of years and can’t compete with Bieber’s immense fame (plus husband Justin Bieber promoting Rhode to his 250 million followers). Depending on how the lawsuit goes, Hailey Bieber’s Rhode may have to change their name.
Where to Buy Rhode Skincare
Rhode skincare is only available on their site. It is currently sold out. (A marketing tactic to increase hype)
The Barrier Restore Cream is for those in need of intense hydration or looking to soothe inflamed skin. It contains shea butter, squalane, peptides, and niacinamide to hydrate, plump, and reduce the appearance of fine lines. Rhode Barrier Restore Cream functions as both a day and night moisturizer.
Rhode Barrier Restore Cream comes in a pale grey tube made of recycled materials. The packaging is very unisex and sporty. It looks so similar to Kosas Sport, I could easily mistake Rhode for Kosas. With Kosas’ wild success in recent years. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bieber’s team used Kosas Sport as their inspiration.
The ingredients matter most to me when it comes to taking care of my skin. Rhode Barrier Restore Cream does include some great skin care ingredients, like a variety of peptides and a few other actives like Niacinamide. But besides that, this is a very standard water, glycerin, coconut oil (Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride) base. And these first ingredients make up 90% of the formula if not more.
So yet another boring moisturizer that is not exciting, innovative or interesting at all.
Moisturizers serve as an occlusive barrier to prevent moisture from escaping, and it’s your serum that will do all of the hard work of actually penetrating into the layers of the skin to work at a cellular level. If a moisturizer looks like every other moisturizer on the market, I don’t care for it. I’d rather slug with my face oils and face balms.
Rhode Skin also says that they didn’t put in anything that wasn’t useful into the formula, but I see a number of eyebrow-raising ingredients.
Polyvinyl Alcohol stuck out to me as I don’t often see that used as an ingredient. Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA) is a synthetic plastic polymer that is often used to make thin layers of plastic wrapping and lining, like the wrapping of dishwasher and laundry pacs. It’s a plastic.
Polyvinyl Alcohol can also can cause skin irritation unless it is combined with other ingredients that protect the skin, such as emollients or skin-repairing ingredients. A strange ingredient to want to use.
Rhode Peptide Glazing Fluid
The product purported to be Hailey’s secret to glazed skin, the Rhode Peptide Glazing Fluid. This is a lightweight, gel serum that plumps and hydrates to support a healthy skin barrier. It contains similar actives to the Barrier Restore Cream like niacinamide, peptides, and hyaluronic acid. But is this actually glazed donut in a bottle?
Let’s take a look at Rhode Peptide Glazing Fluid’s ingredients.
The first two ingredients are water and Butylene Glycol, which again, probably make up at least 90% of the total product. Butylene Glycol is a preservative commonly found in cosmetic products — and it’s made from petroleum. While it’s a better alternative to Propylene Glycol, I prefer my products to be without petroleum byproducts.
The trendy name “glazing fluid” is pretty genius marketing for a product that is very basic. I have the same gripe with Glow Recipe’s Niacinamide Dew Drops. These two products are very similar to each other, even at first glance from their names.
If you want a hydrated, glowy “glazed donut” look it’s really quite simple. Layer multiple hydrating serums and use face oil.
The beauty industry loves to overcomplicate things, so they can confuse you first then present the magic solution. They want to make you think you need to have a certain product to accomplish a certain “look” invented by social media (but has actually existed since the age of civilization), so they can capitalize off you.
I’m certain Rhode Peptide Glazing Fluid is not the secret to Hailey Bieber’s glazed donut skin. So all these years, she’s achieved her signature look with a product that didn’t even exist until recently from a line she created this year? The beauty industry really thinks we’re all obtuse.
More Thoughts on Celebrity Skincare
2022 seems to be the year that every celebrity, big and small, has been launching their beauty brand. From Selena Gomez’s Rare Beauty makeup line to Brad Pitt’s outrageously priced skin care brand and Scarlett Johansson’s The Outset to Hailey Bieber’s Rhode, there is no end in sight to the slew of celebrity launches.
And there is no better example of the rich getting richer. While small artisans in the green beauty space pour their hearts and souls into their creations, which are sometimes the culmination of a lifetime of learning, celebrities are able to slap their name on any product created by a team they hired and make it impossible for smaller business owners without capital and star power to thrive, let alone, survive.
These celebrities create “poor people products” for the masses while they’re able to use elite products and services you could never even dream of affording. It’s the easiest cash grab of the century. Do celebs with hundreds of millions of dollars to their net worth already really need MORE while the world crumbles around them?
Without true artisans, the organic and green beauty world would be so dismal. I will always be rooting for the true pioneers and believers of clean beauty, not the mega rich seeking to capitalize off it.
Thanks for coming to my TED Talk. Time for me to check out Jared Leto’s new skincare line Twentynine Palms.
Wrinkles patches have been around for more than a century, but have enjoyed a surge in popularity recently thanks to social media and the younger generations looking for more affordable, safer alternatives to Botox. The best wrinkles patches smooth the appearance of fine lines and provide a temporary wrinkle reduction effect. Popular silicone wrinkle patches like Frownies and SiO Beauty work by retraining the facial muscles to relax, release tension, and lay flat. I tried the most highly rated wrinkle patches including Frownies, Sio and a number of popular Amazon-sold wrinkle patch brands, and am sharing all my thoughts in today’s review.
Originally called wrinkle eradicators in 1889, Frownies is a fourth generation business led by and for women. Frownies are small cardboard-like patches that stick to your skin and are made of natural weighted unbleached craft paper and a vegetable-based adhesive. Each Frownies box contains 144 patches perforated in different triangle shapes to accommodate distinct areas of your face.
How To Use Frownies
Frownies recommend using Frownies Facial Patches every night for 30 nights to receive lasting results.
After you have trained your facial muscles, you should wear the Facial Patch a minimum of three to four days a week in order to maintain proper facial posture.
Fine lines can be smoothed in less than 30 nights and often only need 3-4 nights every week to maintain wrinkle free skin.
The patches should only be lightly spritzed with water or face toner not put under running water. They won’t adhere properly to the skin if overly wet. The next day they’re stuck very tightly to the skin, so pulling them off without any “lubrication” is pretty painful. I wet them again before gently removing. The last thing I want to do is unnecessarily stretch and tug my skin.
Affordable, you get a lot of patches with your purchase
Another very popular, modern wrinkle patch company is SiO Beauty’s wrinkle-reducing and skin hydrating silicone patches. Sio Beauty was started by Gigi Howard, who experienced chest wrinkles in her 20s and sought to create her own solution. After hundreds of prototypes and even a few clinical trials, Sio Beauty was launched.
These 100% medical grade silicone patches are made of high quality material and are very beginner user friendly. The way SiO Beauty wrinkle patches work is through gentle compression, which flattens existing lines and prevents new ones from forming.
Another popular wrinkle patch brand I tried that’s also used by Amanda Seyfried is called Toute Nuit, which I found on Amazon. These affordable wrinkle patches are designed by a Japanese makeup and skin care specialist, to smooth out wrinkles, and relax facial lines & frown lines on your face.
The Toute Suit wrinkle patches work by giving your facial muscles and skin a support structure to relax and regenerate.
Toute Nuit patches are made from a non-invasive, skin safe, hypoallergenic medical grade tape with small perforations that allow for air porosity, easy application and removal.
The patches are transparent and blend in with your skin so they are not noticeable.
Toute Nuit even offers Relaxation Patches to prevent and relieve tension between eyebrows and forehead from extended screen interaction.
The most affordable option I found are Smoothies Wrinkle Patches which contains 16 sheets of 10 adhesives for under $18. These are reusable to a certain extent and come in a variety of shapes.
They hold skin in a relaxed state to remove facial expression damage and can be used after you let your serums and moisturizer absorb. Female founded,
Smoothies uses eco-friendly packaging and are made entirely in the USA. I found the Smoothies wrinkle patches easy to use and the variety of shapes was versatile, but I did find them to be on the small side.
These are great for focusing on specific small areas or individual wrinkles, but you would need to purchase other wrinkle patches in addition if you’re looking to cover more skin and prevent muscle movement over a wider area.
If you haven’t switched over to a Blissy silk pillowcase, you’ve got to do your skin and hair a favor. Your skin spends a LOT of time with pillowcases during the six to nine hours you’re hopefully sleeping every night. Nighttime is when we want to optimize our beauty routine, because the third of our lives we spend sleeping is when our body is replenishing and repairing itself. Read on for my Blissy review, why you need a silk pillowcase and save 20% with affiliated Blissy discount code OBL at Blissy sitewide.
Who knew a beauty sleep pillow existed that’s specifically designed to prevent sleep wrinkles and morning puffiness? I didn’t, but I’m in no way surprised. What I AM surprised about is that said pillow has been bought by 100,000 people around the world — and it costs $200. So, like any good beauty blog would do I got my hands on it to see what Sleep & Glow’s The Omnia pillow is all about. Read on for my honest thoughts in this Sleep & Glow pillow review. Use discount code OBL to save sitewide + worldwide shipping.
About Sleep & Glow
Designed with orthopedics and sleep specialists
Engineered zones and dimensions
Helps reduce morning puffiness thanks to the slight incline in the pillow’s design
Uses memory foam and OEKO-TEX certified materials
Designed AND made in Europe
You can tell from the diagram above explaining each part of the pillow that quite a bit of planning and thought went into the design of the Sleep & Glow pillow. Since they’re charging $200 for a standard sized pillow, I would expect no less than the best quality possible.
Here’s what a cheaper $40 version of an anti wrinkle pillow looks like.
Both the left and right side of the Sleep & Glow The Omnia pillow has a crevice so there’s no pressure or friction happening against your cheek and eye area. The top cradles your head while the bottom touches your jaw and chin. The middle area is slightly concave to cradle your head.
Thanks to the memory foam material, the pillow has a firm yet very comfortable cushion feel. The Omnia is a standard size pillow and much smaller than the rest of my king pillows on my bed.
If you’re a back sleeper then you don’t need to worry about sleep wrinkles, but side and stomach sleepers might want to consider an anti wrinkle pillow if their budget allows for it. There are many products with a similar purpose — silk pillowcases, overnight wrinkle patches, etc. I would consider the Sleep & Glow pillow the most luxurious option out of all.
Discount code OBL saves
If you’re interested in anything at Sleep & Glow, use affiliate discount code OBL to save at checkout.
Founded in 2009 Annmarie Skincare is one of the OG organic skincare brands creating pure and wildcrafted skincare since before clean beauty was ever a term. They’re also an incredible resource for all things natural beauty and holistic living if you peruse their blog. Annmarie is focused on wildcrafted ingredients, meaning they’re hand picked in the wild where they grow naturally and have not undergone commercial farming methods. I first used Annmarie products almost a decade ago and at various points in time since then (bummed they discontinued their essential oil blends!). I appreciate that they haven’t entered any major retailers and have remained a high quality operation after all these years. Read on for my Annmarie skincare review and save 25% with discount code WINTERGLOW.
Annmarie Handcrafted Skincare Process
Step 1: Select
Annmarie carefully selects organic and wildcrafted ingredients—including herbs and plant extracts. They carefully audit their sources to ensure that they continue to meet Annmarie’s standards of purity and sustainability.
Step 2: Infuse
The selected herbs are then infused into aloe vera and into skin nutritive oils for up to 30 days at low heat (never over 95°). These infusions are used as the vibrant base for all Annmarie products.
Step 3: Craft
Then natural plant extracts, high antioxidant plant and seed oils, skin supporting nutrients and aromatherapy are added to create active and effective natural products. Finally, the products are packaged using Miron glass and sustainable materials.
Are Annmarie Products Vegan?
The Annmarie line is mostly vegan EXCEPT for the following products: Illuminating Pearl Mask, Coconut Honey Mask, Anti-Aging Eye Cream, Sun Love, & Antioxidant Lip Balm.
The Annmarie Anti Aging Facial Oil is one of my top favorite Annmarie products. If there’s only one product you could buy from Annmarie, then this is the product I would suggest. It’s great for dry and mature skin and is formulated with over 13 different seed oils and CO2 extracts.
What makes this face oil unique is that the base oils are herb-infused with echinacea, lotus, ginkgo leaf, life everlasting, rhodiola, green tea, lady’s mantle, violet, plantain, sacred frankincense, lemon balm, and more.
It also contains chia, goji berry, and broccoli oil along with rosehip, seabuckthorn, pomegranate, buriti fruit, acai fruit and more.
It’s lightweight and silky and doesn’t feel greasy at all. The scent is highly sweet and herbal.
This incredibly thin and light serum is jam packed with organic and wildcrafted ingredients blended to help firm and revitalize skin. Instead of a water base, you have an organic aloe Vera base, Rose Hydrosoul and more aloe vera juice that’s infused with amla fruit, calendula, comfrey, fennel seed, ginkgo leaf, life everlasting, milk thistle, gotu kola, nette leaf, plantain, horsetail, rhodiola root, rooibos, rosemary, and schisandra.
Then you have the star ingredients, believe it or not, of Buddleja davidii and Edelweiss to protect skin from external aggressors, hyaluronic acid to plump and hydrate and nourishing oils. Annmarie Anti Aging Serum has an earthy, grounding herbal scent thanks to the addition of vetiver.
As a Palo Santo lover, I’ve never met a Palo Santo-centric beauty product I didn’t like. There’s a spiritual quality and distinct aroma to palo santo that makes it so special. The Annmarie Body Butter is more like a dense buttery balm and not a creamy butter. The palo santo is wildcrafted in Ecuador from a non-endangered species and sustainably harvested solely from fallen trees and branches.
Palo Santo Body Butter is made purely from butters and oils like jojoba, kukui nut, cocoa, shea and macadamia. I like that the palo santo scent is quite fragrant and not subtle – the stronger the palo santo the better for me. It’s very rich and dense, perfect for the dry winter months to come.
This is an interesting cleanser because it’s a cream cleanser, and yet it’s not exactly a cream, but more of silky oil-cream that feels similar to a creamy serum. The uplifting sweet citrus scent is phenomenal. Note that this cleanser does contain coconut oil.
Like the name suggests, the Aloe Herb Cleanser contains an herbal infusion of hyssop, lemon balm, neem, lavender, calendula and more. Thanks to the oil content, this cleanser feels very nourishing and non-stripping. It doesn’t sud but melts makeup and sunscreen off.
The best natural face moisturizers are made with clean and organic ingredients, hydrate skin, and protect and strengthen your skin barrier. There’s no shortage of seriously amazing organic moisturizers on the luxury side of clean beauty, which can easily cost $100-$400. But if a $50 organic face cream is out of your budget, you’re in luck, because I’ve rounded up the best budget natural face moisturizers for all skin types. These affordable natural face moisturizers won’t break the bank but don’t compromise on quality and performance. (All of these best natural face moisturizers are also on Amazon.) Check out the best natural face moisturizers on a budget.
Plenty of natural face moisturizers that are budget-friendly didn’t make the cut for this post. I’m really only sharing what I felt was the best out of everything I have tried over the years. As clean beauty evolves and grows, there’s a lot of competition among brands to deliver the best, which means more goodness for us.
Remember that this is a budget-friendly focused post and doesn’t include all the luxury face moisturizers that are the best in clean beauty. I may cover these in a separate post for the luxury lovers out there (edit: check out these best luxury face moisturizers here) but you should be investing the most in a quality face serum over any other product in your skincare routine.
Why Your Moisturizer Isn’t Working
If you find that nothing is working for your skin despite trying all the moisturizers you can, remember that moisturizers are occlusive, meaning they trap moisture that’s already there and prevent it from escaping. If there’s no moisture to trap in the first place, your skin will remain dry. This is why adding hydration and serums are so important. Serums contain ingredients of a smaller molecular size that’s designed to be able to penetrate the dermal layers of the skin. Moisturizers sit on top of your skin!
All the natural face creams included in the Best Of list are under $50 with some even costing under $30. Plus, almost all brands offer some kind of opt-in promotional offer for you to save even more.
I am also including close up texture shots of as many moisturizers as I can so you can get a better “feel.”
Best natural face moisturizers for AGING skin: For aging skin I would hesitate to recommend budget natural face creams as you need stronger products with clinical actives, and that generally means more high-end. You could try checking out this post and this post.
Great for: Normal skin, Combination skin, oily skin
Kinship’s Supermello hydrating gel cream is a clean face moisturizer but uses Phenoxyethanol as the chemical preservative Having said that, the Kinship Supermello contains:
Base of organic aloe leaf juice
If you love sweet scents like vanilla, marshmallow, buttercream then Kinship Supermello is for you. Supermello hydrating gel cream is an ultra ultra lightweight and smooth gel that feels weightless on skin. It is the thinnest consistency of all the moisturizers in this post and feels like liquid on the skin once you apply
SAVE 20% on Kinship here (Ends Oct 23 , 2022. Discount automatically applied at checkout)
Great for: Dry and dehydrated skin, normal skin, combination skin, oily skin
The perfect lightweight daytime moisturizer, Earth Harbor mermaid milk nutrient glow moisturizer hydrates and balances skin with Superfoods Spirulina & Matcha, phytonutrients, antioxidants and even vegan Hyaluronic Acid. It’s a breathable creamy formula that applies like a dream and instantly hydrates skin, while leaving a demi-matte finish. Mermaid Milk begins an an organic aloe base and has tons of spirulina plus seaweed extract, Neem, turmeric and blue tansy oil.
Great for: Normal skin, Combination skin, Oily skin
For a no frills, simple lotion the Acure Ultra Hydration Plant Ceramide Face Lotion costs $18 on Amazon ($19.99 at Acure) and is a lightweight gel moisturizer. The gel consistency feels hydrating and there is no scent. Acure’s face lotion begins in a water base and contains Plant ceramides, niacinamide & rice bran oil along with soothing extracts of chamomile and calendula.
Great for: Dry skin, normal skin, combination skin, oily skin (Blemish Balm for acne-prone/oily skin)
OSEA Atmosphere Protection Cream is a medium weight cream that’s neither ultra lightweight nor rich and heavy. It has a perfectly silky smooth cream texture and feels hydrating as well as moisturizing. Atmosphere Protection Cream is loaded with organic algae and helps fight environmental skin stressors such as the sun, pollution, and dry climates
Great for: Dry skin, dull skin, normal skin, combination skin
Alpyn Beauty Triple C Bounce Cream is a bouncy, almost jelly-like medium weight cream with over 50% organic aloe juice, 3 forms of vitamin-C and the polyphenol power of wild chokecherry. The scent is sharply citrus and the shade is a fun shade of bright pink.
SAVE 20% on Alpyn Beauty here (Ends Oct 23, 2022. Discount automatically applied at checkout)
Great for: Dry skin, Normal skin, combination skin (Upcircle Face Moisturizer for oily skin)
One of the most affordable all-natural face moisturizers is made by sustainable skincare brand Upcircle Beauty. They focus on upcycled food waste ingredients like collecting discarded coffee beans from 100 artisan coffee shops and using them in their 100% natural skincare formulas. The Upcircle Beauty Night Cream (which features repurposed blueberries not coffee) has a luscious whipped, silky texture that’s deeply nourishing yet still breathable. If you love sweet vanilla and buttercream scents this cream will smell like a dessert to you. The Upcircle Night Cream smells exactly like the cream filling of an eclair!
SAVE 20% on Upcircle here (Ends Oct 23, 2022. Discount automatically applied at checkout)
Great for: Dry skin, normal skin, combination skin
For a light silky cream, check out 100% natural skincare brand Three Ships Beauty’s grape stem cell Squalane day cream. It comes in a sanitary airtight pump jar and smell faintly of grape. Lightweight, smooth and silky, the Three Ships Radiance Day Cream contains Grape Stem Cells, Bark extracts, Prickly Pear Seed Oil, and natural Squalane derived from sugar cane.
Great for: Dry skin, normal skin, combination skin, oily skin
Sephora aisle staple Glow Recipe makes a very hydrating Hyaluronic Cream that’s a gel cream moisturizer. Glow Recipe is a clean beauty brand but uses Phenoxyethanol as the chemical preservative. Plum Plump Hyaluronic Cream is a bouncy, whipped gel cream hybrid that smells faintly of plum and is one of the few Glow Recipe products that doesn’t have added synthetic fragrance. The Plum Plump Hyaluronic Cream feels hydrating and contains three antioxidant-rich plums, Kakadu, Illawarra, and Burdekin, along with hyaluronic acid, poly glutamic acid (hydrating peptide) and ice willow herb.
If you’re looking for a thick and rich cream for dry skin, check out Trilogy Vital Moisturizing Cream. Popular natural New Zealand skincare brand Trilogy is widely available at Ulta and online. This is a non-scented rich cream with Rosapene™ (Trilogy’s unique rosehip and super antioxidant complex), marula, orange flower and evening primrose oils plus tomato, cranberry seed and acai oils. It’s the heaviest one out of all the moisturizers featured in this post.
Great for: Dry skin, normal skin, combination skin
For those of you interested in an organic Korean face moisturizer (that is 95% organic), check out the Whamisa organic flowers lotion double rich. Extremely hydrating, Whamisa’s face lotion is made in a base of certified organic aloe leaf extract (not aloe juice like most) and features Whamisa’s signature fermentation technique using fermentation filtrates from three different flowers: chrysanthemum, lotus, and dandelion with Lacto-fermentation. The moisturizing factor comes from a blend of oils owns butters, including rare Pure Damask rose essential oil.
Discount code ORGANICBEAUTYLOVER saves 20% bringing the price down to $32.
While not a personal top favorite, the Honest Beauty cream is a decent and affordable product that’s more of a cross between a gel and a cream. I would characterize it as a heavy gel-cream hybrid. With a silky smooth texture and no detectable scent, the Honest Beauty cream is satisfyingly moisturizing, but there is something about the consistency that feels a bit tacky to me.
Jessica Alba describes Hydrogel Cream as “bouncy” but I’ve experienced bouncy creams (if you press your finger down on the cream in the jar, they bounce back), and Honest Beauty’s doesn’t do that. Honest Hydrogel Cream contains 2 sizes of Hyaluronic Acid, Squalane, and Jojoba Esters. While Honest Beauty says it works for all skin types, I find that this would work best for combination skin. It might not be moisturizing enough for truly dry skin and too heavy for oily skin.
Budget Face Moisturizer for Men
While I haven’t tried many male skincare brands (and many of the options above are unisex), I wanted to shout out to Jaxon Lane, an affordable clean skincare line specifically for men. And they happen to be K-beauty inspired.
The GQ Award winning Relax and Repair moisturizer is made with Centella Asiatica, Niacinamide, Ceramides, Hyaluronic Acid, and Squalane. and has no scent. It leans medium in consistency for me and leaves a matte finish, since men hate to look or feel the slightest bit greasy.
The question I always get: Does the NuFace really work? I started using NuFace in my mid 20s way before Hailey Bieber started using it, because I’m a big proponent of preventative skin care. During the many years I’ve had my NuFace microcurrent device, I’d often get asked if NuFace was worth buying and if I saw any changes in my skin from using it. These kinds of questions are so difficult to answer because it’s unbelievably subjective (I get the same question about red light therapy too). These days I’m seeing a lot of NuFace dermatologists reviews, but I myself have a hard time trusting any dermatologist who is a social media influencer these days (because I know exactly how that game works). So I am sharing all my real thoughts and personal opinions about the NuFace device, including information on what a microcurrent device is and how to use the NuFace.
You can save $100 off the NuFace Trinity using discount code OBLNF here.
Is the NuFace Worth It?
NuFace is for those of you with sagging skin in need of lifting. It works underneath the layers of the skin to “work out” the facial muscles.
If you have loose skin that is in serious need of tightening, then I recommend looking into the Tripollar Radiofrequency device, which I also own.
Do I think you need the NuFace? If you’re under 30 then no, I don’t think you actually need microcurrent. Skin at this age doesn’t experience any sagging yet. If you really must have the NuFace and you’re young, then it becomes a preventative measure at best. The reason I used NuFace in my 20s was because I wanted to slow down sagging and keep my muscles nice and taught. Yes it’s super vain (but aren’t we all lol).
If you’re in your 30s and 40s then I do think microcurrent is a worthwhile piece of skin technology to keep in your regimen, keeping in mind that effects are entirely subjective, subtle and the people in your life are not going to wonder if you had a surgical facelift. It’s like asking if face yoga or gua sha massage is actually worth it. These are all just small things you do for yourself to feel good about the way you’re taking care of your skin and yourself.
Here’s where my opinion gets a little more technical. I don’t think the original NuFace Trinity Facial Toning device that costs $300 is worth it. I think you’re better off getting the NuFace Mini Devicewhich is way more affordable.
Is the NuFace Mini as Powerful as Trinity?
The Trinity isn’t worth getting because the NuFace Mini is just as powerful as the Trinity. The mini has the same maximum output at 335 microamps. It’s also much more compact and portable. The only difference between the Trinity and Mini is that the head of the Trinity is interchangeable for you to use their red light attachment and others. I personally think if you are serious about incorporating red light therapy into your skincare, then you should invest in a proper LED face mask instead of gliding a little attachment across your face.
Pregnant women and people under 18 should NOT use NuFace.
My Opinion on the viral NuFace TikTok
There was a Tiktok video by user Cheygren that went viral because it showed a noticeable difference between the right side of her face after using NuFace and the left side without. Yes the right brow looks lifted compared to the left, but I work for a facial device company that isn’t microcurrent technology based – and guess what – it does the exact same thing. You do repeated movements enough to a portion of your face and you’ll notice an effect immediately after. And of course, nothing in your face can change permanently without plastic surgery.
If you actually look really closely, the right nasolabial fold is more pronounced along with her dark circles. The left half of the face looks brighter and more plump overall. Her right jawline does look noticeably more defined. But, to me it looks angular, and as a young person, this only ages her face. When I look at just the left side, her face looks soft and youthful and when I look at just her right side, she looks like an older version of herself aged 5 years ahead. Which brings me back to my point that I don’t think young people need this device. It’s only a vanity purchase.
Also, take before and after photos with a grain of salt because it’s almost always just lighting causing the subtle differences in photos. In fact, did you know that you (and your skin) can look completely different depending on the lighting in real life?
How Long Do NuFace Results Last?
I think this is a bit of a silly question because NuFace isn’t some sort of intense cosmetic procedure like an in-office chemical peel. You’re only using it for 5 minutes a day. Even if you managed to actually stick to using NuFace 5x a week for 2 months like they recommend, you still need to continue to use it a few times every week to maintain any results. Which means you shouldn’t be trying to go as long as you can between uses like you would Botox.
What is the NuFace Microcurrent Device?
The NuFace device is basically a way to give your face a workout. If you’re too lazy to commit to face yoga, then NuFace is the easy, technologically-enhanced version.
Microcurrent uses low-level electrical currents to stimulate the muscles in the face.
It also stimulates energy production to help increase collagen and elastin production.
The electric voltage lifts and tightens the muscles underneath our skin, which results in a more toned and sculpted look.
First rule is you must have clean, bare skin that’s oil free. Oil will block the Microcurrent from being delivered. Second rule is you can’t skip on using their conductor products with the device. The salts and polymers in the gel help transfer the current from the device to the muscles. Not using the Microcurrent Activator product renders the device’s technology useless.
CLEANSE: With an oil-free cleanser.
APPLY: Apply the Microcurrent Activator to skin
(Tip: It’s best to apply in sections so that it doesn’t dry out on areas of your face you haven’t reached yet)
LIFT: Perform glides and holds. I always go in upward motions when gliding.
The device beeps periodically to let you know to move onto a different part of your face and shuts off automatically once the 5 minutes is up.
If I’ve applied enough Activator gel then I don’t feel a thing. It’s when there isn’t enough gel that I can feel a zap sensation.
FINISH: Apply skincare as usual
NuFace recommends using the device for five days a week for the first two months, and then two to three times per week for maintenance.
NuFace Before and After
Here are makeup free, completely untouched photos in natural lighting. I used NuFace on only one side of my face for 3 weeks straight.
As you can tell, any difference you think you may or may not see between the left and right is completely subjective.
There’s a reason the “over 40” bloggers talking about NuFace (who have signs of aging that are much more pronounced than a 20 or 30 year old) don’t look like they’ve had a facelift just because they’ve been diligently using NuFace. Any changes the NuFace makes will be so subtle it will probably only be you who notices them.
So I think I’ve made it clear that I don’t think young people need the NuFace. For those of you who do have aging concerns and budget is not a concern, then there is no downside to getting the NuFace. If you would really like to include Microcurrent in your skincare but are on a budget, then my recommendation is to wait for a sale on their Refreshed devices. If you prefer a brand new device versus refreshed, then check out NuFace’s Amazon Prime sale.
I also believe that nothing is a permanent fix aside from surgery, and no single device is going to give you miracle results. If you’re buying fancy skin tools but you’re not practicing good skincare habits daily, then you’re wasting your money. You’re better off remembering to wear sunscreen everyday, reapplying when you’re outside, not constantly dragging your face down somehow while cleansing or applying skincare, not tugging the skin around your eyes, etc.
Skincare brandHerbal Face Food makes 100% plant serums using 50 of the world’s most powerful botanicals and the top 20 rarest, most expensive plant concentrates. Herbal Face Food serums are multi-correctional and target ten signs of aging notably sun damage, dullness and texture in my experience. 100% organic and made entirely from plants without filler ingredients, the Herbal Face Food serums are VERY powerful and have increasing levels of concentration to suit your skincare needs. LeAnn Rimes loves it for her melasma! There’s no fancy marketing with Herbal Face Food, just raw, active products that can actually correct skin issues and have long been a cult favorite with South Korea’s elite. Read on for my Herbal Face Food review, before and after photos and use Herbal Face Food discount code OBL for 20% off at www.herbalfacefood.com.
Native first launched their deodorants which became a mega hit, and in summer of 2021 the affordable clean beauty brand that’s available in stores everywhere launched mineral sunscreens. Native has one face sunscreen and one body sunscreen that each come in either Unscented or Coconut Pineapple scents. I’ve been testing out the Native Mineral Face Sunscreen pineapple and coconut and the unscented Body Sunscreen for the past several months and I am ready to share my official Native Sunscreen Review.
Created by Belgian native Marie along with her LA native husband, Maison Louis Marie is an eco-conscious clean fragrance line balancing both synthetic and natural ingredients. Maison Louis Marie only uses synthetic ingredients in order to protect the planet from the over-harvesting of endangered plants, to avoid animal products, and to protect against known natural allergens. I tried Bois De Balincourt, Maison Louis Marie’s No 4 perfume along with a handful of their other popular fragrances. My favorite is Bois De Balincourt by far, and it’s quite obvious why this is their most famous creation.
I was able to snag their Discovery Set on sale during Black Friday and am so glad I got to try out their scents for a good deal! I definitely need a full size of their Bois De Balincourt. They also offer candles, home diffuser, body oil, deodorant, hand wash and lotion in their most popular scents if you fall in love with a particular one.
I’m going to make a bold statement here and say that Bois De Balincourt is Maison Louis Marie’s best scent. It is alluring, melodic, harmonious. The layers of notes draw you in and you can’t stop smelling yourself. This sultry, warm woodsy scent is a feminine leaning unisex scent. It has a yummy factor to it without going into gourmand territory.
I don’t like the opening of this perfume as I find it very sharp and a tad unpleasant, but it dries down to a beautiful woodsy amber perfume that is masculine leaning in its muskiness but not overly so. I’m not totally certain but the longevity of Le Long Fond seems a tad weaker than Maison Louis Marie’s other perfumes. A few hours after the dry down Le Long Fond ends up as a subtle skin scent.
You’re either going to love or hate Antidris Cassis, but for those who might love it let me introduce you to Maison Louis Marie’s Antidris Cassis. This is not a feminine perfume, but one that could be worn by both men and women. The opening of the perfume is a robust black pepper note. It then dries down to reveal a fresh green scent, one that reminds you of an airy living room with white roses on the coffee table and the windows wide open with the breeze coming through. Anditris Cassis is an airy, fresh, and green floral with subtle fruitiness. I would consider this a masculine leaning perfume despite being unisex and one that I’d wear for my personal enjoyment and not for others.
Vallee De Farney is another beautiful woodsy perfume that feels a bit more appropriate for summer. For an earthy perfume it’s also fresh, spicy and citrus-y, but feels more brighter and lighter than their other perfumes. The dry down reveals a slight powdery characteristic. Vallee de Farney feels sophisticated and subtle.
With 5 spritzes Maison Louis Marie lasts nearly 3-4 hours.
I recently worked with Art Of Shaving on a social media campaign and I thought I would also share the experience on the web. This is a great gift for men this holiday season or for any special occasion. The Sandalwood Travel Kit has all four steps for a perfect shave and can be taken on any flight easily. It’s also luxurious looking and does give a smooth shave. Note that this not an organic or all-natural brand. Check it out at Art Of Shaving.
Selena Gomez’s Rare Beauty is another celeb-founded beauty brand of the many that’s launched recently. It’s also one of the least obnoxious ones with a message that’s more impactful. But is Rare Beauty clean beauty? I look deeper into the brand’s products to understand. Read on for my thoughts…
What Rare Beauty Says
Rare Beauty doesn’t ever seem to market themselves as clean beauty and it doesn’t seem like they identify themselves as part of that category. Nowhere on their site do they mention clean beauty either, except for a small paragraph in their FAQ section.
Here’s what Rare Beauty says on their website:
Because “clean” beauty lacks a regulatory definition by the Food and Drug Administration, we chose not to market our brand as “clean.” But rest assured, our products are thoughtfully formulated, thoroughly tested, and made to comply with worldwide regulations of quality and safety—you have our word. Rare Beauty is cruelty free, vegan, and certified by PETA’s Global Beauty Without Bunnies.
Rare Beauty is vegan beauty but they are not clean beauty.
If you take a closer look at their full ingredients, you’ll notice that they look similar to other conventional makeup brands’ ingredients.
The easiest way to determine how important being natural and clean is to a brand is going to their lip product and looking at the ingredients list.
For instance a lip balm is just about the easiest product a brand can make. We all know butters and oils are needed to moisturize our lips.
If you see a ton of synthetic-sounding names and fake dyes instead of plants, then it’s pretty obvious the brand does not care about being natural.
For truly clean brands, lip products *must* be made with natural ingredients, because we end up ingesting a lot of what we apply on our lips.
Above, you can see a side by side ingredients list comparison of foundations from three brands. Rare Beauty is on the left, clean beauty brand that mixes in synthetics ILIA and all-natural brand 100% Pure.
You can see how the formula gradually becomes cleaner from left to right, with Rare Beauty being the most synthetic.
If I’m going to make my skin sit in makeup all day, I personally prefer to pay for products that will work on helping my skin. More bang for my buck is the way I see it.
OG clean makeup brand Vapour Beauty announcing their closing this week shows how it’s so hard for amazing brands and founders to to do things better than others and succeed at it. Is clean beauty doomed because of brands like Rare Beauty?
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