Three from Rayna

November 20, 2017

I wanted to share with you one of my favourite birthday gifts from this year. My birthday was way over a month ago and all this time I've been really enjoying this special gift. And all others as well! In the spirit of this gift I first have to say that I'm so grateful for every kind word & all the lovely gifts I received and that it's so hard for me to say I prefer one over the other. It's just that this one has been really on my mind each day, in the morning and before I fall asleep. I'm talking about a journal, The Five-minute Jornal that has been so kindly gifted to me by the lovely Rayna from Reina Organics. I'm also mentioning two more gorgeous products that Rayna offers in her shop. Her stunning shop filled with luscious green beauty products.

So what is The Five-minute Journal? It's "the simplest, most effective thing you can do every day to be happier". It's a journal for those of us who don't write journals. I tried writing down the things I'm grateful for before and I even have a designated notebook for it, but in time I stopped or I just don't do it consistently. But I absolutely love the structure this journal provides and I'm so proud of myself that I've been taking the time to write in it every day. Well I missed one day but that's ok. So the whole thing with this journal is that you take five minutes a day to reflect on the things you are grateful for, the things you wish to achieve that will make your day great and writing down your daily affirmation. You write these in the morning and in the evening you write three amazing things that happened and you reflect on the thing that could made your day even better. You simply answer all these questions and you're done. Practicing gratitude, living in the now, mindfulness, are one of the best things you can do in your life. Shifting your focus on the good and positive things can dramatically improve your happiness. It's not always easy to be grateful or positive but a journal like this can at least make you feel that way for a few minutes a day. In the last year or so I've been really into all these things and I really couldn't have been more happy with this gift. Thank you so much Rayna.<3 Get the journal here.
The next product I've been really into is a candle, the Woodlot candle in Cascadia*. You may or may not know that I love walking in the woods. Forests always calm me down and I just love being in them breathing all that fresh air, admiring all their beauty and just feeling so good. Well, this candle smells just like forest! A beautiful evergreen forest. Love. Straight from the jar the scent can be a bit too much but after lighting it up the rooms fill with the gorgeous aroma of Fir, Cedarwood, Pine, Eucalyptus, Sandalwood & Sweet Orange Essential Oils. The woodsy fresh scent is so good! The candle is of course petroleum free (here is a little bit about that), it contains Organic Coconut Wax and Soy Wax (non-gmo). I also adore the recyclable glass jar and the minimalist & chic design. Get it here.
Another product I've been swooning over is the Leahlani Skincare Citrus + Citrine Regenerating Toner aka CiCi (short review here). It's interesting how you can really see a difference in your skin when you stop using a product and that is exactly what happened when I started testing out some other toner. Which btw is good but certainly not as good as CiCi is. Like I said before, my skin responds so, So good to aloe vera based toners and this one is no exception! It has many more wonderful ingredients that really hydrate my skin + I find it subtly brightening. Also the scent, oh my the invigorating scent! It's filled with Neroli and other lovely citruses. AND each bottle houses 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. This toner is formulated for mature and oily skin and I highly recommend it. Find it on Reina Organics or directly from Leah at Leahlani Skincare.

Wishing you all a beautiful Monday!

With love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Vegan Cooking #7

November 17, 2017

Lately I've gotten some requests do share more recipes and food I eat. Also my friend wants to know how I cook my curry, which I shared on my Instagram last week, so here is the recipe for it. Not sure how to call it, so let's just go with the colour and name it a Yellow Curry. It's filled with turmeric, curry powder, coconut milk and lots of veggies.  

This curry is vegan, anti-inflammatory, creamy, comforting and so yum.
YELLOW CURRY

You will need:

- half a small onion
- 4 - 5 potatoes,
- one carrot,
- handful of peas,
- handful of chickpeas,
- cauliflower,
- broccoli,
- a can of coconut milk,
- some tomato sauce (about 5 tbsp).

Seasoning:

- 1 tsp of turmeric,
- 2 tsp of curry powder,
- half a tsp of garam masala (optional),
- half a tsp of cumin,
- salt, black pepper and cayene pepper to taste.

1. Saute the onion. Lower the heat an add in curry powder, turmeric, garam massala, cumin. Mix together with onion and then add tomato sauce. Let is simmer for a few minutes.

2. Add peeled and cubed potatoes, carrot and peas. I like to turn on the heat when adding them and then mix them quite often so the spices don't burn. After a couple of minutes doing that I add in coconut milk. And perhaps some water if the veggies aren't covered with the milk. Add some salt and black pepper. Cook for about 20-25 minutes on low heat.

3. When potatoes are cooked, or almost cooked, add in chickpeas, cauliflower and broccoli. I used about half of cauliflower and broccoli that are on the photos. Cook for about 5-10 minutes more.

4. Taste and add more seasoning if needed. I usually serve with rice but sometimes I also add some quinoa. Enjoy!

Happy cooking!

Love,

Jana xx


* If you're not used to the taste of curry or turmeric, use less. You can always add more.
* If you're using cooked peas you can add them in later, the same time as cooked chickpeas.

5 Under 15€

November 10, 2017

To change things up a little I wanted to share with you 5 natural & organic, AND affordable products. I already wrote a similar post or two in the past but today I wanted to recommed five more products either to help you start on your natural & organic journey or if you simply wish to try some new good products. I've tried all these brands before, and mostly all the products as well, and they are all so very lovely. It was quite hard to choose only five so I stuck to skincare. All these beauties are available at Love Lula which ships worldwide and they also have free shipping. Yas!
Balm Balm Rose Floral Water Hydrosol. I find rose waters so universal and if you're ever in doubt you pretty much can't go wrong with a nice rose toner. This one contains only one ingredient, organically grown Rose Flower Distillate. Use it before applying your moisturizer or oil, before a masking session, as a setting spray or just like whenever you feel like it. I haven't tried this particular product before but I had their Frankincense Hydrosol, which was so nice. Review here. I also love that the toner is in glass packaging. You can get it here.

Konjac Sponge Co.Bamboo Charcoal Face Sponge. I've used a couple of these lovely sponges through the years and I always loved them. This sponge is made from Konjac potato, a plant native to Asia and can be found growing wild at very high altitudes. The konjac the use grows on the volcanic plains of UNESCO protected Jeju Island in South Korea & is free from chemicals, colouring, additives and irritants. 100% biodegradable and fully sustainable. Other ingredient in this sponge is Bamboo Charcoal, which is naturally antibacterial and antifungal, it absorb toxins and removes excess oils. As you can see, this sponge is perfect for oily and combination skin, and is suitable for even the most sensitive skin. I loved using my sponge in the morning, either using it with just water or with a cleanser. The sponge very gently exfoliates the skin, it's super soft and just so lovely to use. The only thing I would change is the plastic packaging that the sponge comes in. You can find my review of the French Pink Clay Sponge here. And find the Bamboo Charcoal Sponge here.

Lyonsleaf Beauty Balm. Vegan, 100% natural and made with 95% organic and wild-harvested ingredients, this balm is such a wonderful treat for the skin. It's filled with beautiful ingredients, smells delicious, has the loveliest & softest texture, and works so well. I used it as a cleansing balm and loved it but my friend wasn't as impressed with it as I was. So she started using it as an evening balm and she adores it! Balms are such amazing products because they are so versatile and multi-purpose. Read my full review here and get it here.

Ooh! Oil of Heaven Moringa Antioxidant Face Oil. I've tried Ooh! oils before but not this one. I loved Cacay Oil but I actually picked Moringa because it has been quite popular lately. Supposedly it is an excellent cleanser and moisturiser as it contains high levels of natural anti-oxidant and is ideal for preventing free radicals and other skin damaging agents. Not only is it rich in antioxidants but it's also anti-inflammatory & anti-microbial, which is perfect for oily and acne prone skin. I chose the travel sized version of the oil so you can first try it out and see if you even like it. This oil contains only one ingredient, organic Moringa and you can find it here.

Hurraw! Black Cherry Tinted Lipm Balm. I've been such a fan of Hurraw lip balms for the longest time! Hurraw makes vegan, organic and raw lip balm. They have a variety of different flavours but I chose the one that was my first from them. At least I think so, who knows if I remember right. This lip balm smells so lovely and cherriful and fruity. It gives a hint of red tint to the lips and moisturizes them really well. It's a great everyday lip balm and if you haven't tried Hurraw balms definitely give them a go. My current fave is Vata* with Cardamom, Almond and Rose. It smells so good and I always love products inspired by ayurveda. Get your Hurraw lip balm here.

Uso code FRIDAY for 15% off your order! (except the Beauty Box)

Hope you enjoyed this post and have a great day!

With love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Ayuna. Less is Beauty.

November 06, 2017

Meet Ayuna, a Spanish brand based on the belief that "Less Is Beauty". What does that mean? The founders Begona Sanjuan, a master esthetician and Isabel Ramos, a scientist and cosmetic formulator, bring over 40+ years combined experience (this brand is legit y'all!), and they are all about using less. Less but better. Ayuna only has 5 beautiful and powerful products (check out their products here), that can do it all with greater precision, cleaner ingredients and longer-lasting results than their commercial counterparts. The whole thing with it is that you don't need a different product for every square inch of your face which I think it a great mindset to have (especially when using expensive products). Using less products is also great for the skin so it can just be and feel happy on its own and not always feel it has to rely on products. Ayuna is inspired by the principles of topical fasting; feeding skin only what it needs to stay balanced, thus ridding it of overstimulating aggressors and kick-starting its own self-repair mechanism. With all that said, Ayuna's philosophy shows more than perfectly in their design and packaging. I ADORE their white glass packaging and the font is just so beautiful! Also did you know that a Spanish word "ayuno" means fast or fasting. Everything fits perfectly together and all the attention to details is making me very happy.

This is truly a special, unique and innovative science-based botanical line that is at the moment available in the November Beauty Heroes Box. How exciting is that?!

The November Beauty Hereos Discovery* brings us a full sized Hero product, the Ayuna Essence Cream-in-oil Peel. I will repeat myself (probably more than once) but this is one of the most unique and innovative exfoliators/masks I've ever used. Not just that, I've never used a product like this before. In its essence this is an exfoliator, a whipped cream exfoliant. On Instagram I described the texture as fluffy and cloud like, and it is giving me all the feels. The same is with the scent, the glorious Ayuna scent. It's so hard to describe it and give it the justice it deserves. It's very sweet and kinda fruity but also a tiny bit floral, almost candy-like. It contains Natural Essential Oil-based Fragrance which is just dreamy. It's definitely a happy scent and it always makes me smile. Beauty Heroes describe the scent as a "hypnotic aroma" and I couldn't agree more.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen my IG stories where I shared how to use Essence. With this product you should definitely read the usage instructions. First apply the cloud product on your face. Apply medium to thick layer and don't mess about with it, it's not that easy to apply a truly even layer. Now leave it on your face as a mask and allow to activate for about 20-30 minutes. In this first step Essence will reveal the skin's radiance with the help of Alpha-amino acids, which trigger skin's regenerative capabilities on contact. Then comes the second step, the fun step. As the mask sets you have to remove it with your fingers. Just your fingers, no water. Gently massage and roll and buff it all away with circular movements. This is gonna be messy, but also very satisfying at the same time. This polish is grainless so you will not feel any grains or beads but it will almost feel like you're shedding your skin when removing the Essence from the skin. You will have to follow up with the third and last step by brushing away any remaining Essence with a dry wash cloth. Don't wash it off with water because once your roll the product away you will be left with a very lightweight oil on the skin. And you don't want to remove all that goodness. Simply follow with the Cream II, which is one of the sidekicks from this month's Beauty Heroes box. From a mask, to exfoliator and finally to a lightweight moisturizer. Essence does it all and as you can see it really is a unique product.

As of this moment I used the Essence twice and I've really been thoroughly enjoying it both times. Not only that it leaves my skin soft and smooth, the skin is also left moisturized (which you can't always say after exfoliation) and it also looks radiant and a bit brighter. After my second use I really noticed that my skin looked plumper and that really impressed me. Essence also promises "softened lines and reduced appearance of pores" which is also something I noticed. To me this is a true Hero product and I'm so grateful that they collaborated with Beauty Heroes because otherwise I don't think I would ever try it. Definitely a product to put on your wishlist. Check it out here.
Now for the Sidekicks. Ayuna Nourishing Artisan Soap has the same wonderful scent as Essence has. All Ayuna products have the same aroma. This baby soap was especially made for all the Beauty Heroes subscribers and isn't it just the cutest?! Each bar of soap has a different pattern and that dark colour comes from Activated Charcoal, which is deeply detoxifying. It's crafted with Borage, Olive, and Coconut oil. At the moment I have three cleansers (four if counting raw honey) and they all lightly exfoliate the skin so I really appreciate that this soap isn't exfoliating. I love using it after my oil cleansing (read all about it in my previous post here) and sometimes in the morning (usually I use either water or honey). Even though it is a bar soap it's really not drying, as many bar soaps are. There's absolutely none of that "squeaky clean feeling" but at the same time the skin is clean. Now that I'm writing this review I'm seeing that you can use this soap for an everyday cleanse like I've been doing already or for a deep cleanse: to activate, use water and a cosmetic brush creating a creamy foam. Apply to skin, along with a warm, moist towel for about 5 to 10 minutes. Focus on the T-zone area, then rinse with warm water and dry. Will have to try that one day. Check out this lovely soap here.
Second Sidekick of the November Beauty Heroes Discovery is Ayuna's Cream II - Rejuvenating Treatment (Rich), a scientifically advanced, botanical formula that boasts an array of high-performance natural ingredients. Phyto-peptides and plasmas, rich in botanical cell factors from Green Carrot, Arabian Cotton, Pomegranate and phyto-peptidic fractions from Turmeric Root and Centella, help skin maintain a feeling of regeneration. I don't use this cream every day because I feel it's just a tad too rich for my combination skin but when I do use it I always love the results it gives. It's luxurious, it's rich but not thick, it's very moisturizing and leaves my skin revitalized and soft. I love using it after the Essence and I almost treat it as a mask, an overnight moisturizing mask. It's one of those cream that you don't need a serum or oil on top because there really is no need for that. The second cream Ayuna has is Cream and it's the Light version which I think would be better for my skin but I'm glad that Beauty Heroes included the Rich cream because it will work better in the upcoming months. Check it out here.
This month's Beauty Heroes Discovery met all my expectations and surpassed them. These Ayuna products truly work and they really are the epitome of luxury. They are also free of cruelty, gmo and gluten, and vegan as well. LOVE.

The Novemeber Beauty Heroes Discovery is valued at a whooping $205! By joining Beauty Heroes you can get these gorgeous products for $39! Really a box you can't miss out on. Check out Ayuna products here and subscribe here.

Wishing you a wonderful Monday!

Much love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Say No to Plastic & Go Zero Waste with Your Makeup Remover

November 01, 2017

In this day and era we should all be more wary of the plastic, and waste in general that we use. I do try, I'm nowhere near perfect, but I do try. I encourage you to do something about the use of plastic in your life too. Since pretty much everyone here (hopefully) washes their faces in the evening, either if you're wearing makeup or not, I have the perfect zero waste solution for you. Oil cleanser + washcloth. That's it! If you haven't tried this yet, then definitely keep on reading. 
 How to remove makeup and impurities from the day with an oil cleanser and a washcloth? 

First you need to pick up an oil cleanser. Or a balm cleanser. Both works. If you really want to be zero waste with this then I recommend picking a massive jar of Coconut Oil. Pick one that comes in a glass jar with aluminium lid, not plastic. Choose organic, cold pressed and extra virgin coconut oil. It can be found pretty much in every store, from health stores to regular grocery stores. I've been the biggest fan of coconut oil for years and my combination skin adores it. LOVE. One thing to mention with coconut oil is that it can be pore clogging for some skin and can cause acne. But at the same time it can also heal acne because it's antibacterial. Just a word of caution to do a patch test. If you're scared of coconut oil then you can try Hemp Seed Oil, which works great for oily skin. Or Black Cumin Seed Oil. This one is also great for oily skin type. Or mix them together. Some swear on Jojoba or Grapeseed Oil. The possibilities are endless, especially if you mix and blend them together. One I personally wouldn't recommend is Olive Oil because it can sting your eyes if you use too much, and also be careful with Castor Oil. It can be wonderful in small doses but it can also dry out your skin like nothing else. Again, great for oily skin but don't use it on your own! What I would suggest when buying them is to go for extra virgin, cold pressed and organic + glass packaging.

If you're unsure which oil to choose then you could also go for oil cleansers or balm cleansers created with specific skin types in mind. I mean if you really wish to go as low waste as you can, then go for a big jar or bottle of oil, but an oil cleanser packaged in glass is the next best thing. I love testing out new cleansers so I have quite a number of reviews of them on my blog. My latest oil cleanser discovery is RAPHA Harmonizing Oil Cleanser* from H is For Love, which I've received in the October Boxwalla Beauty Box*. Check out my review here. I also thoroughly enjoyed cleansers from Mel Millis (review), de Mamiel (review), Mallow + White (review), Skin & Tonic (review), Lyonsleaf (review). As you can see I could just go on and on about them. Some of these have plastic lids but if you're changing up your routine from using cotton rounds or makeup remover wipes every day to this routine, then you are already on the right track. Small changes do matter. Like I said, I do love trying out new cleansers but I keep going back to my trusty beloved Coconut Oil. I love that I can always use an empty coconut oil glass jar for something else.
Oil cleanser done, now let's move on to washcloths. Same as with oils, I recommend washcloths made from organic cotton but I too have "normal" ones. Some I received and some are super old. These babies last for such a long time so you definitely get your money's worth. Besides cotton washcloths you can also get muslin cloths, which are more gentle to the skin. Personally I much prefer cotton cloths, because they stay warmer longer and are also bigger. I like to leave the washcloth on my neck as well on my face for a little while, so they work much better than smaller muslin cloths.
Quick update. You could also go for hemp washcloths or organic bamboo washcloths which Tracy from Mono Naturoils recommends. She says they are "ultra absorbent, super soft, naturally antibacterial and sustainably produced/biodegredable".

ROUTINE.

 First make sure to get your hair of your face. I like to do a bun on top of my head but I'm dying to get one of those cute bands with ears or something. Wash your hands. Use an oil cleanser of choice, spread it in both palms of your hands and apply/massage it directly on your face. No water, no nothing. Just oil directly on top of your makeup. Gently massage your cheeks, your jaw, forehead, your eyes. Apply all over, also down your neck. Massage for at least 20-30 seconds, longer if you feel the need or if you just want to give yourself a super quick massage. Oil will gently dissolve makeup, even mascara. If not, then you're not doing it right or you're too quick about it. Mind you that some oils are better and remove mascara quicker, but all should remove it. Also some do feel nicer on the skin then others. Now take a second to appreciate your new look as a panda. Or a blackish mess.

Now comes the fun part. Some use dry cloths, others rinse them under warm to hot water. I do the later and love it! I squeeze the super warm water from the washcloth and apply on my face. Relaxation begin. As I said, I love a bit bigger washcloths so I can cover my whole face + neck. I very gently press it onto the skin (and be careful if you're using very hot water) and then I just leave it on my skin and gently press my face with my hands. Again, very gently. Here I again have to mention Laurel's video on how to do a facial compress so be sure to check it out here. This is very beneficial for your lymph and lympathic system which Laurel describes as "standing water". Which means you have to do something about it so that it can move, like exercising, lymph massages and such. Doing facial compresses helps as well. It stimulates lymphatic flow and detoxifies - which means happier & healthier skin. So after you've enjoyed a bit of relaxation provided by the warmth of the cloth (trust me on this, it's the best thing ever!) you can wipe off the makeup. Repeat again. If I haven't been wearing makeup or if I follow up with a mask then I leave it at that but sometimes I also feel like using another cleanser to really deeply cleanse my skin.
Since this post is about zero waste-ing your makeup removing game, I would highly recommend using raw and organic Honey (from a glass jar of course). I L O V E honey so much!! I don't know how to express my love for it but honey is the best thing ever for your skin! If of course you're not allergic to it. It's sooo softening, hydrating, it fades acne scars, it evens out skin tone, it's skin smoothing, antibacterial, it's just perfect. I love me some straight up raw honey but I also love honey based cleansers such as Leahlani Skincare Honey Love, Lilfox Jungle Glow and Leahlani Skincare Meli Glow.
If you can't or don't want to use honey then I have another option for you. A powdered cleanser. I have some DIY recipes on this from a few years ago, but to make it super simple you can just ground some oats and store them in a jar. In the palm of your hand add some grounded oats and sprinkle some water on top, apply on your face and done. You can always mix some flowers and other ingredients into the blend. Pictured on the photo is my blend of Oats, Hibiscus & Rosehip. Find something similar here & here. If you don't like DIY-ing and would like a luxe product then go for one of my absolute favourite, Kalima by Leahlani Skincare. Or use some other cleanser packaged in a glass bottle.

I didn't expect to write so much for this post but in the end I would like to mention that oil cleansing is one of the best things I've done for my face and I highly recommend it! I can't imagine removing my makeup any other way. My skin is always properly cleansed when removing makeup like this and is also very soft and lovely. And of course it's way, way better for the environment. If you are not ready to give oil cleansing a go then you could replace your disposable cotton rounds with reusable & washable cotton rounds. I haven't really looked into them but they have loads on Etsy. Be minduful of your choices.

Much love to you all,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Protect Your Skin

October 29, 2017

Before October ends I want to share my thoughts on the October Clean Beauty Box* from Art of Organics. The box themed Protect perfectly followed the September box Bright with the oh-so-amazing Brighten Facial Mask* from Laurel Whole Plant Organics. The mask brightens my skin, my hyperpigmentation spots and redness like nothing else and I'm so in love with it. Check out my review here. One product from the October Clean Beauty Box continues brightening and protecting my skin at the same time, and I'm all about that. The product I'm talking about is the Ursa Major Brighten Up Vitamin C but let's first start with the Akar Skin Lush Balance Toning Mist since toners are always applied before serums.
 Akar Skin Lush Balance Toning Mist is a delicate toning mist formulated to protect skin from free radicals, to promote cell repair and renewal, to restore skin's natural pH balance and minimize pores. Akar Skin is a new-to-me brand and I really like the story behind the brand. "Akar" means white crystal in Tibetan and is a symbol for purity. The founder Kate Chen draws inspiration for her brand from the Tibetan plateau, a place that is free from pollution at its high altitudes and houses botanicals in their purest form. Love. Brand is 100% natural and cruelty free. The toner is also vegan friendly, with ingredients like Rose and Neroli Water, Aspen Bark and White Willow. It has quite a strong scent, I mostly smell Roses. It's refreshing and I've been really liking it. Toners are the hardest products for me to review but I do feel it's skin balancing, like they promise. Plus it's suitable for all skin types. Based on this product I would definitely like to try some other products as well and that surely means something. You can find it here.
Ursa Major Brighten Up Vitamin C Serum is the brand's new featherweight face serum that goes deep to protect and provides instant hydration, simultaneously boosting collagen levels to firm and brighten skin while evening out skin tone and calming irritation. This serum is so lovely and is definitely my fave product from this box. This is an Aloe Vera based serum, which means soothing and hydrating (I always love serums and toners with aloe vera) but the main active ingredient is Scorbic Acid Polypeptide, a super-stable, water-soluble form of Vitamin C complex. Vitamin C is an amazing ingredient to have and use in your skincare routine! It's a wonderful antioxidant and skin brightening agent, which I LOVE. The serum not only protects from free radicals and is brightening but it's also soothing. It's suitable for all skin types and it definitely has my name written all over it! It's very lightweight, it quickly absorbs into the skin, has a lovely fresh citrus scent and of course has a bunch of amazing skin benefit. I love using it under my moisturizer or oil but in the summer oily skin types could easily use it alone. This serum delivers and I love it. At the moment it isn't available at the Art of Organics store but you can get it straight from Ursa Major.

To sum this box up - I really like it! But Clean Beauty Boxes are not only about natural & organic beauty creators artists so I also have to mention the artist, a Chicago-based illustrator Brittany who created the geometric print on the box. Check out her Instagram account here.

The October box is no longer available but you can get these products separately. Or you can subscribe to the November box, subscription is already open. Check it out here.

Wishing you a beautiful Sunday!

With love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links

Boxwalla & H is For Love #2

October 25, 2017

Remember my excitement about the October Boxwalla beauty box*? If you don't, then let me tell you that I was soo looking forward to get my hands on it and in the meantime I also influenced my friend she got her own box. October Boxwalla beauty box brought us a brand that many Boxwalla subscribers were already familiar with, the stunning H is For Love. I adore the description of the brand on the card that came in this box - effortlessly chic, deeply soulful artisanal brand. The founder Bee Ham really looks like that effortlessly chic babe we all want to be, and that shines through her brand & the products. You should definitely follow the brand on Instagram, Bee sure is funny and oh so gorgeous. The packaging and the design is beautiful and minimalistic. The thing I love most are the details of little flowers which you can see on the photos down bellow. The October or Wild Honey Box is named after the figurative Honey, that Bee has made: 3 products that heal, rebuild and cocoon.
Let's start with an exclusive launch, a glowing, rich, decadent body balm named KINU. This body balm has the best texture! It's so creamy and soft, it's as they say - whipped to creamy perfection. I'm so in love with it. KI-NU is actually a Japanese word for silk and this body balm makes my skin silky and smooth. If you would just look at the ingredient list and see Jojoba, Coconut, Olive Oils and Beeswax, you'd first probably think it's just like any other body balm. But it's really not. Carefully chosen oils, organic or wildcrafted, complement each other so well and the ratio of the ingredients make this one truly a special balm. I didn't expect anything else from H is For Love. The scent is so different and unique. I've never smelled anything like it. I like it and the more I'm getting used to it, the more I like it. I wish I could describe it but I can only think of words like warm and soft, and comforting. Contains Grapefruit, Cedarwood, Vanilla, Bergamot, Rosemary and Clove. Another thing that makes this body balm special is that it makes my skin literally glowing. It contains natural mica which gives a gold shimmer to the skin. It looks pretty and I don't mind it but it is a shame I can't show off my legs with this beautiful glowing skin. Without a doubt, Kinu is a special body balm and I really like that it's not overly greasy or oily but that it's quite fast absorbing & nourishing at the same time.
RAPHA Harmonizing Oil Cleanser is at this moment my favourite product from the box. It's so good and I've really been feeling it! Ever since I saw the photo of the in-house healing herbal infusions of Chamomile & Calendula I was like yaaas gimme that! Loving the supercritical CO2 extractions of German Chamomile and Turmeric too. As you can imagine this oil cleanser smells like Chamomile and I absolutely love it! It's calming, soothing and just the perfect way to end the day. With gentle massage, Rapha very beautifully removes my makeup. I do want to mention that one time I used a bit too much oil on my eyes and it stung them. I think it is the Olive Oil but after removing it, it was perfectly alright. How I remove the oil cleanser? With a warm, damp washcloth, which I always loved to do but I've been doing it a bit differently lately. Have you seen the new video Laurel made about facial compressing?? It's everything! Compressing benefits the health of our muscles, circulation, lymph, and our entire nervous system. All four directly impact the health on the skin, so it's definitely something to look into. Check the article and video here. Even more than ever I've been wrapping my face and neck in a steamy towel and pressing very gently into my skin to stimulate lymphatic flow. I repeat twice or thrice and while doing this the makeup and excess oil is gently lifted from the skin. My skin always looks so good after doing this. It's definitely calmer and less red. Such a beautiful product.
You know what's the best product to apply after removing your makeup? Well it's a mask of course! Enter PROPOLIS Regenerative Mask, a potent mask that reveals bright, clear, glowing skin. This mask actually doesn't contain Propolis, like you might think but it is named after its ability to stimulate cell renewal and boost collagen production. This is a powdered clay based mask containing French Green and Kaolin Clays, vitamin C rich Camu Camu, Raw Cacao and a new-to-me ingredient, White Turmeric. I used this masks twice so far. First time I mixed it with water and I felt a strong tingling sensation. Probably because of Cinnamon and Clove. Luckily that feeling quickly went away but next time I mixed in some honey and oil as well. The second time I didn't feel anything so I really recommend you mix in something else as well, not just water. I do feel like the first time the mask worked better or maybe I should say quicker. Either way my skin was brighter and my skin tone more even. Skin is brought to new life as the mask purifies and deposits its nutrients into skin, though its intensity can vary day to day. Based on my experience I would recommend mixing it with mostly water and then adding only a couple of drops of oil (I used this one) and a bit of honey (raw and organic is best). Leave on for 20 minutes and rinse. All that's left to say is that I wish Propolis would come in a bigger jar.
The more products I tried from H is For Love the more I'm fall in love with the brand. I hope Lavanya and Bee will continue to collaborate together. There are only a few October beauty boxes left as one-time boxes so you better hurry if you want to snatch one! Check it out here.

Boxwalla is a bi-monthly subscription service and so the December subscriptions are already open. I don't know what's in the beauty box but I can bet it's something amazing, as always! You can subscribe here.

With love,

Jana xx

*sample generously provided
**this post contains affiliate links
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