3 Organic Products That Will Change Your Beauty Routine

I wanted to take a moment and share three game-changing organic products under the $15.00 price point.  Not only have I personally sampled each recommended product, they have now replaced other beauty staples in my daily routine.  While some organic products can be more expensive than their chemically treated counterparts, these are a splurge, if you can even call it that, that is worth the upgrade.  Be good to your body and it will be good to you!

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Charcoal Soap

I’ve been wanting to try charcoal soap for a while after hearing that it removes toxins, pulls all the gross stuff from your pores, and helps with skin issues like my eczema, which conventionally flares during the winter months.  While walking through Atlanta’s  Krog Street Market, I came across this lovely handmade soap shop called Mama Handmade Bath & Body that has since become one of my favorite places to explore there.  While playing with sample oils and inhaling the fabulous scents of the different types of soaps, I found several bars of raw handmade charcoal soap.  I purchased a bar for $8.00 so I could give it a try.  For almost 3 weeks, I have washed my face with this vegan soap and follow-up with the Cerve moisturizer every morning and night.   I knew that it was a naturally anti-fungal and antibacterial soap but was pleasantly surprised to learn that it was loaded with moisturizing oils like avocado, jojoba, and wheat germ.  My face is so clear and smooth and  I have gotten so many compliments on my skin (check out my IG for my Jan 19th selfie…no foundation at all with a little blush!!!) I love that I am not clogging my pores with unnecessary ingredients. 

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Organic Argan Oil

Argan oil, produced from the kernels of the Argan tree, is becoming very popular in the cosmetic world because of the restorative benefits for hair, skin, nails.  I hear it also does wonders for pregnant women with stretch marks.   I was asked to try out a sample of 100% pure Moroccan Argan oil from a brand called Actually Organic and I wanted to see what the hype was all about.

Around the same time the 1 oz bottle of  Argan oil arrived, I have weening myself off gel manicures and was suffering from soft and brittle nails that would break if you just looked at them.  I started moisturizing both my cuticles and my nails and guess what happened… my nails started to grow again. I could even look at them and they would not break.  I then started to use the oil to help heal dry eczema patches on my body and I have really enjoyed the results of smooth nourished skin in these dry winter months.  I originally thought that $12.00 a bottle was a little steep for a 1 oz bottle, but I quickly learned that a little product goes a long way.  This bottle will last me through the August, which is perfect considering Argan oil in its pure form has a 12-month shelf life.  I apply oil to my nails about once a week and I use the oil on my skin to heal specific problem areas like my elbows, inside of my ears (strange, I know), and the crease of my hands. ~ Thank you to the Actually Organic team for providing the She Makes Cents team with this product ~

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Organic Nail Polish Remover

I will be honest, I have had a sample bottle of organic nail polish remover from an old Birchbox for a few months now.  I was cleaning out the house in one of those Kondo Method type of purges when I decided that I would do one of two things with the stockpile of unopened beauty products- use it up or donate to a local women’s shelter.  My 4oz bottle of Soybean and Tea Tree Oil organic nail polish remover from Karma Naturals was on the chopping block because I have always used a standard nail polish remover.  Yes, traditional removers are full of all sorts of harsh chemicals but they always got the job done.  As it was going into the pile of products that would soon be donated, I decided to keep it to see how it removes pink nail polish from my toes.   Compared to traditional removers, it takes a little longer to remove nail polish but that was okay with me once I felt how moisturized my bare toenails were.  It was amazing!!!  I now even take my own bottle of organic remover with my when I go to the nail salon so that they don’t use the harsh remover that I was used to.  This is a vegan and cruelty-free product that has replaced my previous brand FOREVER.

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{Splurge or Save} Hourglass Vanish Seamless Foundation Stick & Brush Review

Vanish Hourglass Foundation StickA few weeks ago, I received the Vanish Foundation Stick & Brush from Hourglass Cosmetics via Influenster for testing purposes.  Its claim to fame is having the coverage of a concealer, fluidity of a liquid, and the weightlessness of a powder for undetectable full coverage.  Well….I put that to the test.  First, I selected the color from a computer screen so I worried if the foundation would even match my skin tone.  If you are a frequent reader of shemakescents.com, you know that I never leave the house without mascara or a spritz of perfume. PERIOD.  Those are my beauty standards and I take them very seriously.  Lately though, with the surge of regular women rocking fully contoured faces on the daily, I have been compelled to add to my makeup repertoire.  In the past few months, I have spent a good bit of money for drug store foundations/concealers in an attempt to discover a perfect color match and consistency.  The sad part is, I spend money on those foundations that I use   occasionally  since foundation isn’t normally in my daily routine.

Related Post: {Kiss & Makeup} The Shelf Life of the Makeup in Your Bag Right Now

Yesterday, the Mr. and I went to Sephora to pick up my birthday freebie and I decided to play with more Hourglass cosmetic products in person. As the Mr. patiently waited for me to finish, he took notice of the $46.00 price tag for the makeup brush and another $46.00 for the foundation stick.  Astonished and confused, he questioned me about who in their right mind would pay those prices.  Well, let’s look at the two products separately.

Related Post: :{Bday Swag} How to Get FREE Stuff on Your Birthday

Foundation Brush

I knew I was going to be reviewing foundation, but I was pleasantly surprised to find a complimentary Hourglass Vanish foundation brush.   I used it with the Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick in Almond and the “seamless finish” advertised came to life on my face.  The first week, I exclusively used the brush with the Vanish Foundation Stick and then I branched out to see if I would get similar results with brands under the $10.00 price point.  The brush created a flawless finish regardless of the foundation used with it.  Since #selfies and #usies are the millennial standard, having a secret weapon in your makeup arsenal that makes your skin look impeccable in photos and in person is worth the splurge.

Splurge or Save? : SPLURGE

Foundation Stick

As a woman of color, I often find it difficult to find makeup that doesn’t make me look chalky, too light, or too dark.  Nude doesn’t mean the same thing for everyone, you know. Like I mentioned before, I had to pick my color from a computer screen and magically, I picked the perfect color.  This is mind-blowing considering it takes me almost 20 minutes in Target to find something “close” to my skin tone.  I love that it is a foundation stick because I can use it right as I am running out the door and I don’t have to worry about a mess like what you have when you use liquid foundation on the go.  Instead of using it on my entire face, I have used it daily under my eyes to fake a “refreshed and youthful” look when I have been consistently running on 6 hours of sleep (not cool). Is it worth the $46.00 price point?  I think this one could depend on what you look for in a foundation.  I will be buying this foundation again, but it won’t be my exclusive foundation.  At a $46.00 price point, it is too expensive for daily use so I will mix it in the rotation of my drug store foundations.  

Splurge or Save? : SAVEHourglass Vanish Foundation Stick and Brush Review

cropped-logo-twitter2014.jpgWhat’s Your Go To Foundation Brand? Please share below.

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{Splurge or Save} Christian Louboutin Nail Polish


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Anyone who knows me personally, knows that I have an affinity toward nail polish. The Mr. once described my behavior in a Sephora on the Las Vegas strip as a “lioness approaching her prey”. With that being said, I have tried it all and I must say, nail polish should not be a splurge. Take the Christian Louboutin nail lacquer that was released yesterday. For $50.00 a bottle, that is smaller than the average nail polish bottle I might add, what are you getting?- A nice rouge polish that can be replicated with OPI or even NYX polish (which is becoming my new favorite because of how long it lasts). You see, you are paying for a name, cool branding with the spiked top, and for people to see you wearing Christian Louboutin. But unlike his shoes, which can be readily identified by their distinctive red bottoms, no one is going to recognize your Rouge Louboutin polish. Think about it like this, 12 bottles of polish could buy you a pair of Louboutin heels…which I would consider a better investment, by far.  

Splurge or Save? : SAVE

Danielle

cropped-logo-twitter2014.jpgWould you spend $50.00 for nail polish?

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{Kiss & Makeup} 3 Gorgeous Makeup Trends for Spring

Look Good, Feel Good!

My makeup kit runs the gamut of price points- from Stila to Maybelline to Chanel to ELF.  Why?  Because somewhere between my growing love for all things makeup and my seasonal makeup purge that I recommend every woman do, I have come to realize that it’s more about the look of the final product than it is about the brand name.   Below are 3 gorgeous looks for Spring from my tweeps and beauty experts over at Nordstrom.  Your goal should be to find colors and products that make you look and feel as fabulous as you are in whatever your budget allows.  Each look can be recreated using your favorite brands!     

Makeup Trends for Spring

make up for women of color

make up tips 2013

Photo Credit: My Twitter Friend Nordstrom

Looking for suggestions on where to find some great beauty products?  Check out my list of some of my favorites:

{High/Low Makeup Comparison} Can You Tell the Difference?

Last week I pinned a picture of an awesome lipstick color! I followed the link to the tumblr account of Makeup Lovers Unite who has a complete page full of “makeup dupes”. The page consists of a list of comparison of high-end makeup products to their drug store counterparts. If  it’s the color you love, why not get the look for less?

Photo Credit: Makeup & Macaroons

Check out other Makeup Dupes at Makeup Lovers Unite

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{Kiss & Makeup} I Should Have Tossed My Old Makeup…When?

I am getting a head start on my “out with the old, in with the new” in preparation for 2013. Admittedly, I am a beauty product junkie. I love trying the latest colors in nail polishes, textures in foundations, and scents of the newest perfumes, which is probably why I love Birchbox so much! I’m sure I have plenty of makeup that needs to be replenished and it’s a project I take on when I’m in one of those “toss everything” type of moods, otherwise I feel like I’m throwing my dollars spent on these products…right down the drain. Trends change, peoples taste change, however, the number one reason why this beauty product purge is so important is purely scientific. Like food, the components that makeup everyone’s favorite beauty products eventually goes bad. For those brave enough to continue to use old products, beware…

How long should I keep makeup in my kit?

Mascara: is a must for everyday wear! “This is the makeup item you should be most vigilant about: As the brush is taken out, applied, and put back in the tube, it brings with it any bacteria that has collected along the way”, explains cosmetic chemist Jim Hammer in an article for Allure Magazine. Can you say eww? Don’t wait until your mascara is clunky and hard to get back in the tube, at that point you are risking pinkeye and sties.

Lip gloss/Lipstick: Lip gloss is my second must for everyday wear. On a basic level, I rock the CO Bigelow Mentha lip shine EVERYDAY!!! They run about $7.00 a tube, however I wait until the after Christmas sale from Bath and Body Works and I get the holiday gift set of about 10 tubes for $7.00. I usually grab two packs and they last me about a year. Good thing the shelf life of lip gloss and lip stick is ONE YEAR!

Eye shadows: Without looking in my vanity and makeup kit, I know I have some eye shadows that are in dire need of being tossed. For whatever reason I keep them because I LOVE the color or it reminds me of ….idk, something, or I again, feel bad about throwing away a $20 eye shadow I may have only used twice. But when you think of all the gross bacteria that over time accumulates on your products, it is safe  to say that after 3 months, they should be tossed.   If you are still feeling bad about tossing eye shadows, check out this alternative for tossing old eye shadows from the blog Never too Much Glitter.  This blogger takes recycling to a whole other pretty level.  I bet you never thought you could turn eye shadow into nail polish, did you?

Foundation: I only wear foundation on my face for special occasions and when I want my face to be one consistent color. I do, however, use it almost every day as a base on my eyelids. This should be replaced every 6 month to a year. If you wear creamy foundation, you should stay more on the 6 months side of the timeframe.

Nail Polish: Guess what, nail polish does not attract bacteria. You can keep it as long as it is not thick and chunky!!! Whoo hoo!

Operation “Kiss & Makeup” starts this week for me, how about you?

What products do you need to toss TODAY?

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{Health & Beauty} How to Save Broken Makeup

This is an awesome and FREE beauty tip from the lovely girls over at The Beauty Department( TBD ) Lauren Conrad, Kristin Ess and Amy Nadine; who if you are not currently following, you should be .  I love The Beauty Department  because they have tons of great tips and tricks. Just the other day, I broke one of my favorite eyeshadow and was looking for a way to save it before having to replace it. Since it was brand new, I didn’t see myself going into my money envelope for yet another shade of purple eyeshadow, so I went on a hunt to find an easy fix… and voila, this is what I found.  This reminds me of when Denia taught us how to save broken lipstick.

Check it out!

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Do you have beauty tricks you’d love to share?

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{Health & Beauty} High-End Lifestyle Products for Only $10!!

Birchbox!!

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I have meant to write a post about Birchbox for a while now. For the unfamiliar, Birchbox is a smart, streamlined, and fun way to discover high-end beauty, grooming, and lifestyle products. Birchbox delivers the best products and the best insider secrets, without any fuss. Each month, members receive a selection of samples that we’ve tried (and retried) ourselves. They source samples from both well-known brands and emerging gems. The women’s subscription includes everything from skin care to makeup, as well as fun non-beauty extras all for…wait for it…$10. What I love about the concept is that you fill out a beauty profile so products will complement your individual yet beautiful tones.  There is a short waiting list and they will send you an email when your place in line is ready. 

 Join for FREE, here!

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Tip of the Week: Health & Beauty

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