Isla Apothecary Neroli Body Oil

October 23, 2017

Happy Monday lovelies! Hope you're all doing well. I'm coming at you with a short and sweet post about a new-to-me body oil and also with a new-to-me beauty brand. Isla Apothecary is a vegan brand handcrafted in London using only the finest raw and natural, organic and wild crafted, ethically sourced ingredients, which remain pure and unadulterated. For the first product to try from them I decided for their Neroli Body Oil*.
 Packed with oils like Safflower, Coconut, Pumpkin and Rosehip, this product moisturizes my skin so beautifully. You know this oil is something else. It's very lightweight and I totally get why it's described as a "dry body oil". Because it is! It's not greasy or too oily but like I said, really lightweight and can be easily applied even after a morning shower and before putting on your clothes, not pjs. I really do love how this oil feels on my skin and that it absorbs into the skin so quickly. So beautiful. Plus it makes my skin soft and moisturized and I can't forget about the gorgeous scent.

"The heady and romantic floral and peppery aroma of the bitter-orange blossom is the proud and exquisite heart note and key ingredient in our cult favourite Neroli Body Oil." Contains the stunning Neroli essential oil which is one of my faves, plus there's Petitgrain, Mandarin and a rich and grounding base of Patchouli and Frankincense. The scent is romantic and floral, I really do like it.
I adore the eco-friendly, amber glass bottle as well and the rose gold packaging & design is just so in and gorgeous. Love it. As you can see, I am a fan and I definitely recommend this body oil.
You can find it at Love Lula.

Have a lovely start of the week!

Love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Inspired by the Sun

October 17, 2017

Oh sun, glorious sun. I live for warm and sunny day, and the sun has really inspired me to write this post. I'm struggling with this intro today so why not just skip it and dive straight into the beautiful natural and organic products that somehow remind me of the sun. 
Laurel Whole Plant Organics Brighten Facial Mask* (review) is hands down one of my favourite masks. If you have sun damaged skin (not to sound rude but you probably have, we all have, some more than other), scarred skin, like hyperpigmentation, post-acne scars (me!) or if you just want a mask full of vitamin C and other skin rejuvenating and brightening ingredients, then this is the mask to go for. This stuff works like nothing else, and it's all organic, like all Laurel's products are. Camu Camu, Acerola Berry, Rosehip Fruit, are all full of vitamin C, which is shown to repair damaged DNA and sun damage, and can reduce hyprepigmentation over time, restore collagen and increase firmness. Yes, yes, yes. With regular use I notice dramatic results on my skin, especially regarding my post-acne redness. Can't recommend this mask enough! I got this mask in the September Clean Beauty Box from Art of Organics. Sadly the box is no longer available but you can still get it in their online shop. If you're a subscriber you receive 15% off. Get it here.
Lani Tropical Coconut Face Polish* is the newest product from Lani. 100% tropical. 100% natural. 100% vegan. This face polish contains 5 ingredients and is based on nourishing Coconut Milk Powder and when mixed with water is smells strongly of coconut. I really like that it contains vitamin C, I need that in my skincare regime more and more (being 30 and all that haha). This polish buffs away dullness and impurities, and restores softness. I wouldn't say it's harsh but you definitely feel the tiny particles working and doing its job. I haven't been using for long but so far it's been a nice face scrub to use once a week or so.
Earthwise Beauty Sungod Face Mask* is a product that will definitely get its own spot on this blog of mine but for now let me just quickly mention it. Based on the description, Sungod is THE perfect mask for me. "It is for the souls who always crave sun rays, who worship the sun's power, and who, during dark winter months, dream about sun-washed beaches and cliffs." That is SO me! And then I saw the ingredient list and was like omg I need this! And it didn't disappoint. It contains ingredients that my skin knows and loves like Calendula & Turmeric, and some that I have never used before but seem to be working well with my skin, like Wildflower Pollen. Like always, Ava created a product with interesting and unique ingredients, and I really like that. The mask doesn't promise instant results but it needs to be given a proper chance with frequent applications and time. I tried to be as consistent with it as I could and I noticed my skin to be brighter and more firm. Suitable for all skin types, especially mature, with signs of aging, sensitive, and acne-prone. You can get it here.
Earthwise Beauty Ruby Facial Oil* (review) is hands down my favourite EWB oil. I fell in love with the ingredient list immediately and Ruby really impressed me. I love that it contains so many beautiful antioxidant-rich and non-comedogenic oil, and also because some of the oils have some sun-protective qualities. Plus there are no essential oils in this baby. This is my second bottle of Ruby and I simply adore it's gorgeous rich colour, the lightweight texture, the softening and brightening benefits, and of course it pairs beautifully with the Farizad's Veil Sun Protective Powder*. Ruby is special and makes my skin very happy. Get it here.
Leahlani Skincare Citrus + Citrine Regenerating Toner is a mist formulated for mature and oily skin types. This is definitely one of the loveliest toning mists I've tried. It has THE best spray nozzle that disperses the beautiful blend of lots of Hawaiian ingredients. Here is the full list if you want to have a look. As you may know I love that it contains Aloe Vera, always a wonderful ingredient to have in a toner. CiCi has a gorgeous scent (like you would expect me to say anything else about a Leahlani product), smells like Neroli or more like Neroli + a mix of other citrus. So lovely. The toner is hydrating, energizing and illuminating. On top of that it also contains a Citrine gemstone, that has been purified in the Hawaiian sea and sun. Citrine emits a strong vibration of joy, prosperity, energy and abundance. Citrine also helps to clear negative energy. Get CiCi here or at Reina Organics.
Odacite Pa + G Serum Concentrate* (review) is a potent facial oil designed to mix as a spot treatment or mixed with some other product. The Pa + G serum is specifically targeted to treat hyperpigmentation, which you know I love. The active ingredient in the serum is cold-pressed certified virgin Equadorian Papaya Oil, which is not only filled with vitamins but also with the resurfacing enyzme Papain, which dissolves excess melanin pigments and dead sin, making skin even-toned and glowing. I've already used this baby and I really liked it. I got it in the August Boxwalla Box but you can check it out here.
Turmeric is one of my favourite spices, as is clearly seen in majority of these skincare products. It's such a powerful brightening, anti-inflammatory and rich in antioxidant spice, and I simply can't get enough of it! I used to swear by turmeric and honey mask, which is still amazing but I honestly don't do that much DIY products as I used to. But I do love eating it, either in different foods or I make a golden mylk, or I take a supplement cause it's just so convenient. The two things I want to mention is that you should enjoy turmeric with black pepper because it increases the absorption of turmeric and be careful because it can stain your skin and your clothes.

For the end I want to mention two products I really loved using, and they both also contain Turmeric. Clear skin Advanced Spot Treatment with Calendula & Turmeric* from Province Apothecary is one of THE best oils I've tried for reducing post-acne scars (those annoying red spots that just won't go away). It's a beautiful oil and definitely one to have if you suffer with acne. The other (almost) equally good product is the matching face serum, the Clear Skin Advanced Face Serum with Jojoba & Sea Buckthorn*. It balanced my skin beautifully and also helped with the hyperpigmentation spots. Reviews of both here.

Have you tried any of these lovely products?

Much love,

Jana xx

*samples generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

INIKA Certified Organic BB Cream Foundation

October 09, 2017

I'm excited to review one of my favorite foundations, the beautiful INIKA Certified Organic BB Cream Foundation*. Not sure why I'm saying it's one of my favourite foundations because it actually IS my current favourite and it has been for the last few months. On all my latest selfies on my Instagram I'm wearing this beauty and I couldn't be more pleased with it. Natural and organic makeup came a long, looong way in terms of pigment, shade range, longevity, over-all performance and INIKA is definitely up there at the top. INIKA is 100% natural, certified organic, vegan, halal, and cruelty-free. INIKA’s tubes, pots and brushes are made from recycled materials and all INIKA packaging is recyclable.
 I've tried one or two INIKA's products before but the product that really impressed me from the brand is their BB Cream Foundation, made with 80% certified organic ingredients. I love the ingredient list! There's a bunch of ingredients rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals like Aloe Vera, Avocado, Argan, Pomegranate Seed, Prickly Pear Seed Oils, which moisturize and hydrate the skin + pigments which provide coverage. There are of course more ingredients that I mentioned and you can find the whole ingredient list here. This BB cream is hypoallergenic & dermatologist tested, and suitable for all skin types.


It's described as "a multi-tasking 3-in-1 formula that combines; a silky primer, moisturiser and foundation - all in one product". INIKA BB Cream Foundation is available in 6 shades. I have the shade Cream, for fair tones. What they don't say is that this shade is yellow or to say it in a more polite way, it has yellow undertone. This may be a deal breaker for some but for me it is a perfect match! I have other foundations that I love but none matches my skin tone this well. It has a good coverage, I would describe it as light. It beautifully evens out my skin tones, it looks super natural, it's very lightweight, feels good on the skin, it doesn't clog my pores, and it's just a gorgeous product. This BB cream is also long lasting and it really ticks all the boxes for me. I actually didn't expect to love it this much. It really is such a wonderful product. And many other green beauty bloggers would agree with me. I found out that the best way to apply it is with your fingertips. No brush or beauty blender can make it look as good and blended in as your fingertips can. Changing up the application made such a massive difference and since then the love for this product just kept on growing. I also wanted to mention the finish of this foundation but I find that a bit harder to describe since I always apply oils under my makeup so my skin always looks more dewy than anything else. I'd say that it gives a slight dewy look, it gives just a right amount of dewiness without looking greasy.

I'm completely in love with this product and I highly recommend it! I'm excited to try more INIKA products. You can get this BB Cream Foundation here.

Hope you're all having a lovely Monday!

With love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Vegan Cooking #6

October 04, 2017

I have another cooking article for you today and this one I wanted to get up as soon as possible because it's more than perfect for this time of year. It's nothing that special but it is a dish I've been quite obsessed with lately. It's everything I want in fall, it's comforting, warming, creamy and delicious (of course!). It's time for a pumpkin soup y'all. Whenever I post a new recipe I'm always like "it's so easy to make" but this one really is super easy and everyone can do it.


For this recipe you will need:

- one pumpkin,
- a few cloves of garlic,
- salt & black pepper,
- nutmeg,
- ginger and
- cayenne pepper.

Since we have a bunch of homegrown hokkaido pumpkins I used that one in the recipe, but you can use butternut squash as well. So first wash your pumpkin really well. Then you have to cut your pumpkin which sometimes can be such a struggle because of the super hard and thick skin. Be careful when cutting it okay. Remove the seeds and leave the skin on. Well perhaps remove just the bits of skin that don't look the best. Then simply place on baking tray and bake on 200°C for about 30-40 minutes. You can try if it's baked by sticking a fork into it. The last 10-15 minutes of baking the pumpkin also add a few cloves of garlic.

After it's all baked cut the pumpkin in smaller pieces so it's easier to blend, and place in a pot. If you have a good blender you can toss everything in there but I don't, so I smash and blend the pumpkin + water with a hand blender. Here I added about a litre and a half of water but it depends on the size of a pumpkin. Add seasoning and spices (I didn't write any specific measurements because that's up to your taste buds. Start with a small amount and gradually add more), and then place the pot on a stove and bring it to a boil. There is no need to keep cooking it for long, I usually left in on for about 5 minutes, even less. I like to serve this soup with some pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil, which make the soup even more delicious.
 
 Happy cooking!

With love,

Jana xx

Leahlani Skincare Meli Glow

October 01, 2017

Can't stop, won't stop talking about Leahlani Skincare products. Today I'm sharing with you a sweet treat for the skin that you would immediately want to eat and then perhaps also slather on your face. It's time for glow, Meli Glow*, an Illuminating Nectar Mask. This mask kinda smells like strawberries, kinda doesn't, it's sweet and not as tropical as other Leahlani products I've tried but equally beautiful. 

Say aloha to a soft, supple and more even-toned complexion with Meli GLOW. 

Meli Glow is filled with enzyme and vitamin rich tropical fruits, nutrient dense beauty oils, skin moisturizing and plumping hyaluronic acid and stimulating clays steeped in the creamy fusion of organic Hawaiian nectar. This mask is based on Organic Raw Hawaiian Honey and I could just stop right here, because anything and everything containing raw organic honey works like a charm on my skin. Spoiler alert - this product is good! Honey is antiseptic and antimicrobial, it's moisturizing and very healing to the skin. Brightening as well. Check this out -"once mixed with water, honey will release a peroxide property which helps to heal acne and impede bacterial growth". It's all sorts of good for your skin. Meli Glow get its colour from Rose Clay and in there you can also see particles of what I assume are Rosehip Fruit and Strawberry, I think. Both are rich in Vitamin C which means they help to reduce and lighten acne scars and hyperpigmentation. I also want to mention Starfruit, Guava, Banana Fruit and beautiful oils of Argan, Sea Buckthorn and Avocado, plus more. Such lovely, lovely ingredients.
Meli Glow works at the molecular level to increase blood circulation and oxygenation. I've been using this mask once a week or so, but you could easily use it a couple of days a week, even every day. Since this mask contains fruit enzymes, I treat it like a gentle exfoliating mask and because I use other gently exfoliating products I don't want to overdo it and over exfoliate my skin. I apply Meli Glow on freshly cleansed skin using a bit of toner or water to easily spread it on my face. I do a quick massage to make it easier for my skin to absorb and reap all the goodness that Meli Glow provides. It is suggested to leave it on for 5-15 minutes but I usually leave it on longer, for about half an hour or so. My skin is left super soft & smooth and brighter, which I love. Up until two weeks ago week I have been using Meli Glow on its own but then Leah wrote about a new Aloha Alchemy "recipe" mixing Meli Glow with the one and only Mermaid Mask. I mixed equal parts of both masks and after washing the concoction of my skin I was blown away. My skin was visibly brighter, redness was reduced and it just look so good. If you have both, I definitely recommend trying this out!

Meli Glow is suited for all skin types, but is especially beneficial for dry, combination and mature skin. What can I say? Meli Glow is yet another beautiful Leahlani product and I highly recommend it her. You can get this tropical face mask directly from Hawaii from Leahlani Skincare or if you live in Europe I recommend getting it at Reina Organics.

Wishing everyone a happy October!!

With much love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Fall Makeup with Áureo & Hero

September 28, 2017

I haven't done a makeup look post in a while so here is a fall inspired look which I see myself wearing a lot in the upcoming weeks. The two products that actually inspired this look are both from Beauty Heroes and their seasonal makeup discovery boxes. The first is the organic lip stain or su/STAIN from Au Naturale in the shade Hero*, a gorgeous dark reddish plum colour. I haven't been wearing this shade a lot but since the weather changed I've been really drawn to it. As I shared on my Instagram stories I usually blot the lipstick with some tissue because otherwise it's just a bit too much, a bit too dark for me to use for a daytime look. The other product that also greatly impacted this look is the new-to-me Eye Tint in Áureo* from Gressa. I love this shade, such a beautiful champagne colour that can be used all over the lids or as an inner corner highlighter. It's very shimmery but I love how it looks. In real life it's a bit more yellow than on these photos, just so you know. Since it is a cream eyeshadow I have to mention the longevity. Does it crease, is probably the most burning question. It actually doesn't! I'm so so excited and thrilled about this because eyeshadows always crease on me, not to mention cream eyeshadows. This feels more like a cream-to-powder eyeshadows and when I use a powder as a primer, it stays on all day. No joke!

Okay so on my face I used Inika BB Cream Foundation* in the shade Cream. I love this foundation so much! Then I used two concealers. Under my eyes I applied RMS Beauty "un" cover-up* (review) in the shade 11 and on my spots some Lavera Cover Stick (it's not my fave but it gets the job done). Then I used the brand new Gressa product which I also received in the new Beauty Heroes Beauty Discovery, the Lumiere in Eva*. As I said in this Instagram post, this product is quite heavy and oily, and also not that pigmented. It's actually described as a "pigmented serum" and that it "blends in like an emollient treatment oil but with added beautifying benefits". So it's not like your typical bronzer. The lovely Suzi from Gurl Gone Green actually tried mixing it with a foundation and she loves that. I have yet to try it like that but I will say that even tho it feels heavy and oily, it does give my skin a lovely bronzed look and afterwards a highlighter really isn't necessary. Also it feels much nicer when it sinks into the skin. On top of Eva I added just a touch of my all time favourite bronzer, the Lily Lolo Pressed Bronzer in Miami Beach. I was very careful with the application because as you know, oil and powder don't mix well. More so that on my cheeks I applied it on my forehead and all over the face. I used this bronzer on my eyes as well and I love how the two (with Áureo) look together! I applied a bit of Vapour Aura Multi-use in Eros* (review) on my cheeks as well. 
What else? I used Nui Cosmetics Mascara* (review) and Eyebrow Duo in Light from Lily Lolo (review). I almost forgot that I used a powder as well, as a primer on my lids and as a finishing touch on my face. I used Lily Lolo's Flawless Silk Finishing Powder.

Wishing you all a lovely and sunny fall!

With love,

Jana xx

*samples generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Vegan Cooking #5

September 26, 2017

About two weeks ago or so I shared a few clips on my insta story doing cinnamon buns and since I got a lot of comments I’m sharing the recipe today. Like always this is not a recipe per se but more a guideline on how to make cinnamon buns as easily as possible. No complications, only sweet, yummy and soft buns with cinnamon, the perfect autumn and winter spice.
 For the dough you will need:

- yeast (I’d say I use about one to one and a half tsp),
- water or mylk to activate the yeast (you don't need a lot),
- 1 tbsp of sugar,
- 1 tsp of flour,

+ 1-2 tsp of coconut oil and
- 3 cups of flour, 1/4 tsp of salt and 1 cup of mylk.

Filling:

- 2 tbsp of coconut oil,
- 1/3 cup of sugar (I used brown and coconut sugar) and
- cinnamon. 

First you need to activate your yeast. Add the yeast to a cup and mix in some warm water or mylk, 1 tbsp of sugar and a tsp of flour. Let it sit for 10 minutes. In a bigger bowl add 3 cups of flour, 1 cup of  warm mylk and coconut oil + the activated yeast. You may need to add a bit more flour or liquid, it depends. Mix together with a spoon first and then knead the dough with your hands. After you have a nicely rounded dough, cover it with a cloth and leave it in a warm place for at least an hour, longer if you have time.

Transfer the dough onto surface and roll it out in a somewhat rectangle shape. Brush on the melted coconut oil, then sugar and top it all with cinnamon. I think I use about half to one tbsp. Roll up tightly and then cut into slices. You can now place the buns or rolls onto a baking tray, either place them separately or together, and spread whatever coconut oil that's left on top. I used a cake tin and placed them all together because they are much softer if you bake them like that. Cover with a cloth and let them sit for another 15-30 minutes.

Bake for 17-20 minutes on 180°C. Check if they're baked with a toothpick. 

Bon appétit!

Jana xx
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