Trying out the Speak Vegan Deodorant Cream

I’ll admit, for the past few years I have been tempted by all natural deodorants.  I know some people maintain that regular deodorants are bad for you, health wise, and other’s claim that it is a load of hooey.

And yes, hooey is a technical term.

Personally, I was mostly curious.  Let’s face it I have been putting my deodorant to the test with my outdoor workouts.  It’s one of the reasons that I didn’t give in to my curiosity and attempt a natural deodorant prior to this. I figured I would try it out when I once again returned to working out in an air-conditioned space. It seemed less likely to fumigate my neighbors with possibly product failure.

However, this Speak Deodorant Cream came in my Petit Vour box in June so I figured why not.  The walking trail I use is mostly abandoned and if it fails there will be even more reason for people to keep their social distance.  It’s sort of a pandemic friendly experiment.

Petit Vour

So first, I opened the metal canister and took a sniff. 

And yes, I have to smell everything.

It smells vaguely oatmeal like.  The scent wasn’t bad, so I looked the product up on-line to find out more about it before I progressed to the trying out stage.

I’ll admit, I was sort of stalling.

I’ve used the same deodorant since middle school  –  Dove powder scent in case you are wondering.  The biggest change for me was switching from roll on to a solid sometime in high school.

But on with the stalling…er research.

A gentle, yet effective natural deodorant with a creamy texture that glides on to give you satin-soft protection.

Why it’s special: An aluminum and baking soda-free formulation that’s great for sensitive skin. Lightly lavender-scented.

Benefits: Protects against odor naturally and Replenishes moisture to combat temporary discomfort.

Well I suppose I wasn’t expecting a massive batch of flowery prose, after all how many claims can deodorant have? It’s deodorant.  It keeps you from stinking and hopefully from getting sweat stains on your shirt and with luck doesn’t irritate your skin. I think that’s all any deodorant can claim. 

Well, that and its scent.  I have to admit the scent of lavender surprised me. I don’t smell lavender.  I smell oatmeal.

Incidentally, there is no oatmeal in the ingredients. 

Full ingredient list: Maranta arundinacea (arrowroot) root powder, cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, magnesium hydroxide, kaolin, theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil, butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter, tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E), lavandula angustifolia (lavender) oil

https://speakskinbeauty.com/products/09-deodorant-cream

So yeah, no oatmeal.

But with a hearty hope for the best, I began to try the product out. 

First of all, this deodorant cream is in a metal can.  The product does not come up to the top.  You cannot just open it and rub the can into your armpits.  You have to extract the product from the can and then apply it with your fingers.

scooping with the back of my nail

And despite the name of cream, it is as solid as a regular solid deodorant.  To apply it I ran my nail backwards over the surface so the product was scooped onto the top of the nail.  This seemed the easiest way to get it out.  I then rubbed the product under my arms and repeated with the other side.

The product goes on well.  My underarms felt properly coated with product.  However so did my hands.  Because of the wax and oils in the product, I had to wash my hands with soap.  I could not just rinse it off as the wax just made the water run off the skin.  As annoying as this was (because I am already washing my hands a lot these days and did not need to add an extra hand wash every morning), the waterproofed hands did give me some hope in the sweat proofing department.

So product applied, I went about my day. My sweaty, sweaty day.

At this point in time, nothing is going to prevent the underarms of my shirts from getting soaked. We’ve been hitting above 90 degrees with a minimum of 80% humidity for the past few weeks. Last night, we finally got some rain and cleared the air out for a little bit.  It felt wonderfully better at 65% humidity this morning.  Then the sun rose and we are above 80% again.

So there will be sweat. 

However, I was pleased to note, there was no stink. 

That’s right, I did not emit a pig pen-esque cloud of funk. The product worked.

When I went to take my shower however I noticed it sort of pilled up a bit in areas where my skin rubbed together and when I showered I really had to scrub hard to get all of the product off. 

I blame the wax.

Still there was no stink and no irritation.  My skin had no problems with the product.  I have been wearing it for over a week now and I have been very impressed by its performance.  If you are looking for a good well-performing vegan deodorant, this one does work.

While the extra scrubbing in the shower and the pilling up of the product weren’t my favorite side effects, neither was bad enough to make me stop using it.  However, I really don’t like applying it with my hands.  I know that sounds like an overly precious thing to say, but I really don’t like scraping it out with my nail and rubbing it into my arm pit. I just don’t. 

If this came in a stick form, I would have no problems purchasing this and using it more. But I know myself.  I will continue to use this product until it is gone, but I am not going to order another can and that is simply because of the application process. I know I would not use it. It would sit on the shelf while I purchased other products and felt guilty about the waste. With that said, it is a good product, it is just not a product for me. If they ever make a stick form of it, I’m in.  Until then, I’ll pass. I will however be more open to trying other vegan and all natural deodorants. So I suppose that is something.


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The Empties Bin: June 2020

The products I’ve used up this month

Welcome to the end of the month and a review of the empties bin.  This month I managed to clear out several items that just needed a little push to be used up.  I have makeup, skincare, and bath products this time, so it is going to be a little all over the place. There are links to the products mentioned. The links aren’t affiliate codes, but as everyone is having Fourth of July Sales starting up I added links to the relevant sites. The sale links are affiliate links and should you click on them and purchase something then I may earn a small commission which goes towards hosting this website. If that makes you uncomfortable in any way, feel free to avoid the links. Oh, and the one different link is for the Verb Hair mask. It takes you to a previous review I wrote of the product.

Thet the review of the empties begin!

We’ll start with makeup.  The first two items in this category were not so much used up as rendered useless.  The first of these is the ELF Camo Concealer, which sadly I left uncapped for too long.  It was getting low on product though so the loss wasn’t too great.  It is a good product and one that I will be purchasing again, probably in multiple shades.

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The second item that wasn’t entirely used up is my Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed powder.  I had a very thin layer of product with a lot of pan showing and I thought I could stretch it to last one more week.  Unfortunately, I knocked it into the sink where the remaining product shattered and landed in a toothpaste smear. So note to self, do not balance delicate powder on the edge of the sink after just brushing teeth.

As it has been one of the standbys in my makeup bag for a long time, I will be repurchasing it at some point.  Because it is such a go-to item for me I am refraining from purchasing a replacement right away as I want to try other products and  if I do replace it I will just end up falling back into the habit of using it again.

In this month’s empties there are two empty primers, one old familiar and one that was new to me.  The old familiar was the NYX Pore Filler.  It is one of those reliable formulas that works well under a variety of makeup.  It has a slight tint to it and has been compared to the Benefit Porefessional.

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I’ve bought it several times and I’m sure it will make a return visit to my dressing table and makeup bag at some point, but like my Rimmel powder, I am going to be holding off repurchasing it for a while.  It occurred to me when I was using the last of it that this was the only NYX primer I have ever tried. I know they have many others.  I recently tried the NYX Bare With Me Foundation and I liked it enough that I think I might try the primer from that line as well next time I make a NYX purchase, stepping away from one of my old faves to try something new from the brand.

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The second primer in my empties bin this month was a sample sized primer from Peter Thomas Roth called Skin to Die For. While I wouldn’t go that far, I really liked the way this primer felt on my skin.  It was pore filling and mattifying.  It has a slight tint to it and I found I could wear it alone with just powder on days when I didn’t feel like wearing a lot of makeup.  It gave my skin a very healthy look to it but made it look like I wasn’t wearing anything. A full size is currently sitting in my shopping cart as I try to figure out what other products I want to order with it. I know I’ll have to use up at least one more primer in my dressing table before I open it for use, but if the full size performs like the sample, then I can see it very quickly becoming a staple.

Finally, rounding out the makeup category, I have a sample sized Smashbox Liquid lip.  It is in the Shade Stepping out and it is one I would order again.  I find the Smashbox formula to be a comfortable one to wear.  It wasn’t too drying but it did dry down enough to stay on my lips without leaving lip prints everywhere. 

The only reason that I am not immediately purchasing a full size is that it is in a neutral color and at the moment I seem to be awash with neutrals. I have a couple that are already well loved so I might pick an older one and focus on using it up, but I want to clear out a few more neutrals before adding to their number.  I suspect though that when I do order this, I will order several different shades because it is a good formula.

I know thus far it sounds as though I am in love with everything I try, but I’m afraid that with the end of the makeup, the love fest is going to slow down for a while. 

The next product in my empties bin is the Tula Skin Care Purifying Face Cleanser.  It is rare that I don’t like a cleanser, but I have to say, I did not like this one.  I will say it did take off my makeup reasonably well, but the scent of it is highly perfumed and it is not a perfume I enjoy. 

It smells as though you spilled a bottle of Jean Nate on some lavender sachets and then put them in a tightly sealed bag for a month.  It is a super intense scent that I just don’t care for.  In addition it left a slightly waxy feel to my skin. 

Since I tend to use a balm or oil to first remove my makeup and then this sort of cleanser as my second cleanse, having it leave a residue was not good.  I know everyone seems to rave about Tula Skincare but this cleanser was not for me.  I do have the eye balm from this month’s Boxycharm to try so maybe I will have better luck with it. This cleanser is a hard pass for me.

Next in the empties is the 111 Skin Vitamin C Brightening Booster. This wasn’t a bad product.  It has a pleasant scent, absorbs well into the skin and did have a brightening effect.  I enjoyed using it.  However I have tried other Vitamin C serums that I like better. It is good, but not good enough to justify the price point.  It is one of those products that I would be happy to see appear in one of my subscription boxes, but I probably wouldn’t repurchase on my own.

Something I am on the fence about is the Versed Day Dissolve Cleansing Balm.  It works really well and leaves my skin super soft. 

However if I plan to use it to take off my eye make up I have to take my contacts out first.  I had a little wash into my eyes when I was washing my face and the oil clouded my contacts.  I tried cleaning them but I finally had to concede defeat, the oil wasn’t going anywhere. 

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I wear disposable contacts so it wasn’t a big deal, but when using this cleanser it was something I had to remember. That and the fact that is smells a bit like Vick’s vapor rub are the only downsides.  It was a wonderful cleanser and if you don’t wear contacts I would highly recommend it.  If you do wear contacts, then just be aware of your eyes.

One thing I have no reservations about repurchasing is the Elemis Dynamic Resurfacing Facial pads. I would buy these again in a heartbeat.

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They were a very gentle exfoliate that I could use twice daily with no issues at all. The scent was fantastic and the pads were never too wet.  Sometimes to ensure the pre moistened pads don’t t dry out companies soak the pads so you practically have to wring them out before use.  These had just the right amount of serum.  When I reached the bottom, the bottom of the jar was damp but not swimming in left over product and at no point did the product dry out.  I really enjoyed using them and will be purchasing them again in the future.

This month I have two empty tubes of hand cream.  One from Skylar which was a Hydrating Body lotion in the scent Capri and the other  is from Cela and is the Crème de la Crème crème supreme. They were both good hand creams.

I prefer the Cela formula slightly over the Skylar, but neither really made my must reorder list.  They are both good, but I prefer both the Library of Flowers and the Pistache formulas for hand cream. Those two I generally keep reordering. 

The Skylar and the Cela I would use if they were there, but I probably wouldn’t reorder. While this is the only Cela product I’ve tried I have tried other Skylar products before and liked them.  I actually like Skylar perfume very much, in fact, I like the scent of the Capri hand lotion enough I will be looking to see if they have a perfume in that scent.  I’m just not a fan of the cream formula.

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I have two empty bath products this month as we finish out the broad skin care category. The first is the OGXBeauty Pure and Simple Coconut Coffee Scrub and Wash.  The scent was nice.  The coconut and coffee blended together to create a scent that was sweet and more vanilla with coffee undertones than anything else.  Still it is a nice scent. 

While the coconut oil did leave my skin super soft, the exfoliating scrub part didn’t always mix well.  Sometimes I’d squeeze the product out and get almost no exfoliation, other times it was like damp sand. 

I tried squeezing and shaking and turning it upside down to sit for a while.  Nothing really helped.  It was always hit or miss as to whether I was getting any sort of exfoliation or not.  It was a nice wash but I probably wouldn’t get this product again.

Also in the bath time category is the Unfiltered Raw Sugar Salt Soak in the scent watermelon and pink cactus.  This was an impulse buy because I was out of my Kneipps bath salts. While it smells nice in the jar, once added to the water, it loses all scent.  It did make my skin feel nice after my bath, which I appreciated, but for me, part of the pleasure of luxuriating in a bath is scent related.

I liked that it worked well, but I wanted more scent. Or at least some.  While it was nice to try something new, in this case my old standby of Kneipps is what I’m going back to.  I’ll still try others, but I’m going to keep my classics on hand.

The last category we have is hair. I have three items in this category of empties and I saved it for last so I could end this post on a high note.  Because all three are utterly fantastic fantastic.   Two of these products are hair masks.  The first is VERB Manage+Restore Hydrating Mask.  I wrote a post about this earlier (the link will take you to it).  The short version of the post was that it was fabulous.  There was nothing I did not like about this mask.

My conundrum is that shortly after I finished this sample I started a trial with another hair mask.  It is the Naturelab Tokyo Perfect Repair Treatment mask.  It too is fantastic. 

NatureLab Tokyo’s PERFECT REPAIR Treatment Masque

It smells like a high end salon in the best possible way and it gave my hair shine and body.  I had no tangles and my hair looked wonderful. The only complaint I have is with the packaging.  As it comes in a jar, it is a little messy to scoop out.  It is hard to open with wet fingers and I tended to take more than I wanted.  I still adore the product, I just wanted a container that was a little more manageable with wet hands and portion control.

So now I want both masks.  Verb and Naturelab Tokyo.

I also want to try out the shampoo and conditioner from each as well.  At the moment I have several other hair masks to try so I am putting off ordering until I’ve gone through them all.  All but one is a sample size, so it won’t be too long a wait, but it does give me more time to make my selections.  Both Verb and NatureLab Tokyo have set the bar really high though.  I suspect I will end up getting both and then rotating them because quite frankly they are both phenomenal.  

The final item in my empties is a product I have already ordered again.  It is the Klorane Dry Shampoo.  While I like the IGK for massively grungy hair, the Klorane is my standby. 

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This is the dry shampoo I use every other day and the one by which I judge dry shampoos. On the nights I don’t wash my hair, I apply it liberally before bed, go to sleep and in the morning brush my hair.  My hair looks clean and fabulous. There is a little white cast when first applied (I have dark hair) but that soon dissipated by either letting it sit overnight or running a brush through. It is a standard in my hair care arsenal and one that will be bought again and again. In fact, I already have it’s replacement sitting in my bathroom.

So there you have June’s empties. There were some good, some bad and a few mediocre. I find I really like doing this empties review.  It forces me to actually look at the products I have finished and assess my opinion of them now that they are not new and shiny, their productive life complete.   I find it a good assessment.  I hope you find it useful as well.


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Setting up your own Home Spa: Five simple tips

A fluffy towel and a few components for my at home spa day

Each year for my birthday I treat myself to a visit to my local day spa. This year, not only was my local day spa closed, but the level of anxiety I would have going to a spa at this point in time would pretty much negate the relaxation aspect of the trip.

So I decided to have an at home spa day.

I knew I wasn’t going to have exactly the same experience, but I was determined to have a fun relaxation event. Let’s face it; we can all use a little less stress at the moment, birthday or not.  So, if you are looking to create your own home spa for the day, here are some lessons I learned.

The first step is proper planning. Figure out what you want to include and then take a good look at the space you are working with. Perhaps you have a spacious bathroom that can be taken over completely for the day for a self-contained spa.

Personally, I live in a house that was built in the 1940s and the bathrooms, while updated, suit the age of the house. Because of this, I knew there was no way I was going to have a self-contained spa.  It was just not physically possible. So I seperated my spa into sections. Part was set up in the bathroom and part was set up in the sunroom. They were spa stations, if you will. By breaking it into stations, I wasn’t trying to pack too much into one room and stressing myself out about making it all fit. I could spread out and make it feel more luxurious.

A part of the planning process is to decide what products you are going to use and if you need equipment or not. I had a small foot spa with a built in foot massager. It was a gift that spent years seeing the light of day once or twice a year. Then I began walking for my main exercise and pampering my feet became a more frequent occurrence to make up for the effort they were putting in. So my planning involved taking it out and making sure it was ready for use. I decided to add a facial steamer to open my pores prior to masking, but alas I did not order it in time and so it did not arrive in time for my spa day. (I made do with a large ceramic mixing bowl filled with hot water and herbs and a towel as an impromptu steamer but hope next time to use the simplicity of the facial steamer.)

Whatever you decide, whether dusting off or purchasing new, make sure to gather your items early. Make sure anything with batteries has them and that anything needing to be plugged in can reach the wall socket. Order any new purchase items early so you aren’t stressing about packages arriving on time or the store running out of stock. This leads us to Step two, product selection.

I’ve found that one way to make your at home spa feel more luxurious is to coordinate the scents of the products.  They don’t have to be identical, but they should be in the same family or at least friendly neighbors. For example, even though I was showering and washing my hair the night before, my spa day included soaking in a bath and before I soak in a bath, I like to make sure I am clean.

For my pre bath shower I used Molton Brown’s Coastal Cypress and Sea Fennel Shower Gel.  It actually came in this month’s Look Fantastic Box.

Because of the scent of the shower gel, I chose Kneipp’s Ancient Sea Mineral Bath soak. 

Well, technically speaking, it was the other way around.  I picked up the Kneipp’s and then decided to use the Molton Brown since it went so well.  It was more of a happy accident than anything else, but I was still in planning mode when it arrived so I’m calling it a planning victory. After I got out of the tub I used the m. greengrass Dry oil Spray in the scent Beach Air.

Now, while all three of those items have differing scents, they all play well together and created a unified oceanic themed feel. And because I had different zones, I could create a scent profile for each of the sections and still have it feel like a singular experience.

I tend to go to my local day spa only a couple of times a year.  While setting it up at home was fun, I don’t anticipate on doing it every week.  Because of this I found that I didn’t need a whole lot of product.  In many instances I used travel sized products rather than picking up a full sized version.

This allowed me to tailor the scents to the occasion, without a lot of left over products, and it also means I am not committed to a scent profile every time I want to do an at home spa day.  I like the thought of changing out the scents based my mood.  I know Molton Brown offers a sampler pack with travel sized bottles of their various scents (both for shower gel and shampoo I believe). I ordered the shower gel one to have on hand and to allow me to try out different scents. By occasionally using travel sized versions instead of full sized ones, I was able to get more luxurious elements without breaking my self-imposed budget which I also appreciated.

I’m big on budgeting by the way. If I am going to treat myself, then knowing how much I can splurge on without interfering with any upcoming bills is a key element to my relaxation process. I know that sounds strange but having the budget and knowing I haven’t over spent keeps me from stressing. I didn’t make this one of my five points, but it is more of a 2.5 point. In addition, somehow I can spend money on other people with no problem, but when it comes to myself I tend to waffle and talk myself out of it. Especially if it is extra. By making my spa day an actual item in my budget and doing the math around it, I feel better able to justify spending the extra on myself. If you have similar issues, perhaps this can help.

And with that little aside, we get back to the main points.

So now that you know what you want and have selected your products, we reach step three, the preliminaries.  A few days before I planned to have my spa day, I went into the spaces I planned to use (the bathroom and sun room) and gave them each a thorough cleaning.  Every tile was scrubbed and every window washed.  Random piles of empty boxes and assorted junk mail (we use the sunroom to remove outer packaging before washing hands and taking items into the house) were sorted and disposed of so that the rooms both sparkled.

I did this a few days in advance because I didn’t want my spa day to smell like disinfectant.  So doing the deep clean a few days earlier, allowed the scent of the cleaners to dissipate. 

The night before my scheduled spa day, I did a second quick clean to deal with anything that accumulated in two days and then I set up everything I planned to use. I set up a chair with my foot soaker and foot massager placed in readiness.  I arranged a table with my manicure kit, polishes and lotions. I washed and dried the fluffy towels, placing them where they were needed and I made a pitcher of cucumber and lemon water to put in the fridge. I arranged everything the night before so that all was in readiness. That way the day I planned to have my spa day I had nothing to think about except enjoying myself.

Step four may or may not be a necessity depending on your living arrangements, but it is explaining to those you live with what you are doing and when you plan to do it. A clear time line is a good idea, especially if those you love are prone to causing interruptions.  In my house notification meant explaining why the space I just cleared of empty boxes and junk mail needed to stay clear for a few days and not be looked at as a place to move things into.

At least until after my spa day. 

I also had to explain that the fancy pitcher of water was not for general use. It turns out my darling dearest really likes infused waters.

Which I did not know until this weekend and really didn’t expect. Mostly because he tends to think of water as the extra ingredient in coffee. A mixer, if you will.

It is also why I had to make up a second pitcher for my spa day.

Which I don’t mind because I now know how to get him to drink more water.

Finally, this leads us to step five and that is embracing the experience.  Chances are, you will not be able to replicate every aspect of the spa in your home. It is even possible that mid masking you will be asked where the thing is. You know the thing with the thing that goes inside that other thing?

That’s okay don’t let it stress you out. Just stare at him until he realizes the clay mask on your face isn’t going to let you answer him and then he’ll look at the candles, the foot bath and remember why the sunroom is temporarily off limits. Possibly.

This isn’t a replication of a spa, it is creating your own unique spa like experience.

Think of it as something special just for you.  Don’t dwell in the impossible perfection, but embrace the fact that each aspect is tailored specifically for you.  You chose everything from the scent of your bath salts to the candles placed just so. The products also were chosen just for you. They are items you find luxurious and that you know you like. In the end, you are enjoying the most exclusive spa experience and it is all tailored just for you. Enjoy it because you are worth it.


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Cocktail Cinderella for the Friday Face Mask

Welcome everyone once again to the Friday face mask. This afternoon as I was debating what mask to try the mail arrived and with it my Facetory mask subscription.

I brought it inside, decontaminated the package and then myself and chose one of the masks for my face today. In case you don’t know Facetory has several subscription offers. I am on the four masks per month subscription for $8.90 (four-ever Fresh Subscription). I figured that was enough masks to ensure that I have a steady supply but not to bury me in them. However should I decide I have too many, I can easily skip months with a click on my account page.

Four-ever Fresh Subscription!

They do have loads of other skin care for sale and some of their tiers for subscriptions aren’t simply sheet masks but include other items as well. I have never tried any of them. But I like their sheet masks. Its interesting because there are some that I try and I know I will not need to purchase again, but I have found a couple of others that I will seek out.

This is my third month (just arriving) and thus far there are two on my list. I marked them down for mentioning in my end of the month empties post. So I’ll leave you guessing until then.

Oh and for those of you looking at the photo and thinking you said four masks, but I see five, this month they threw in a fifth surprise mask for fun. I don’t know if they do that every other month but I received an extra mask in April and now one in June.

So today’s mask, now that you know where it comes from is supposed to moisturize the face. At least from the one line of English on the packet. It claims to be…

A hydrating essence that moistens and alms the skin that has been exhausted and stimulated and provides a healthy clear skin.

I’m guessing that means it helps with redness as well as moisturizes. Everything else is in Korean and alas, I do not read the language. Although I am thinking of adding it to my routine. At least enough so I can read my skin care products because I really like Korean skincare. Pictured on the package are pineapples oranges and limes. I’m not entirely certain what sort of drink is supposed to be portrayed but when I opened the mask it smelled exactly like the fruit salad served with school lunches when I was in elementary school. The kind that comes in giant cans and has a cherry as the highlight.

It felt very strange to wear the scent on my face.

But wear it I did. And I am glad I did. The Cocktail Cinderella from Puclair is a very nice mask. When I took it off and patted it in, my skin felt nicely hydrated. After the remaining essence sank in, my skin felt very soft. This is one of those masks that makes me wonder if they sell the essence separately, because elementary school vibes aside, my skin really enjoyed this mask. I can live with a little random nostalgia for nice skin.

I’m also very pleased with my mailman’s timing today. I also hope he gets some sleep and maybe a nice refreshing mask tonight because he looked exhausted. I waved from the driveway but even from a distance, his dark circles were obvious. Rest well Mailman Josh and I hope you have a nice weekend. I hope the rest of you have a nice weekend as well. I am off to finish this last little bit I need to get done before my weekend of birthday extravaganza kicks in. happy Friday.


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The Make Up Bag: June 26th, 2020

The Make up Bag used June 20-26th, 2020

This week’s bag was a pretty good selection of products I’ve used before and ones I hadn’t.  There were even a couple of things I liked, but hadn’t used in a while because I forgot I had them products.  I’m very glad some of them made it out of the drawer this week.

First up was the Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream with SPF 30.  I used this as my foundation this week.  I layered it on top of my SPF 50 Volition Sunscreen all week so I felt extra protected. I really enjoyed this and even though I do have an unopened full size in the dressing table, I went for the sample size.  This week I ended up using about half of the sample tube and I liked it enough to just keep the Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream out for another week so I can use the trial size up completely.

So next week there will be no foundation reviews since it is a repeat.  However at the bottom of this post I will be listing next week’s products. If there is something in there you’d like to see a more in depth review of with an individual post instead, let me know. (of course if there are products from other weeks you want more information on you can let me know that too. There will be more repeat weeks with foundation as I try to use up my summer shades.)

The AutoBalm Pic Perf Shadow palette provided my eyeshadow this week and the review was a bit rocky.  It surprised me because I really like The Balms shadows.  I anticipated loving this which is why I chose it after my not so great palette last week. But it was not my favorite.  The palette was really hard to open and while the mattes were great the color selection was not. The above link is to my full review of the palette.

There were two repeats in my make up bag this week.  The first was the Laura Geller Spackle Mist Restore Coconut water.  I really love the spray on this product.  It really is a fine mist that doesn’t splotch out on to your face.  It also smells like coconut water instead of coconut candy which I appreciate. Oh yeah, it also works really well at setting my makeup. It is staying around for a third week.

The second repeat is also staying around and that is the Brow Contour Pro from Benefit. It will actually be in my bag until I use it up.  While all of the products in it are good, I really prefer the individual products.  However all of the products are growing on me.  Benefit is my go-to for brow products but I tend to limit myself to the pencil.  I recently found out I like powder brow products so I might try that as well from Benefit.  I also am really liking the Highlighter in this multi-product brow pen. 

Get a free deluxe sample of Precisely, My Brow Pencil when you spend $35. Enter code PRECISELY3 at checkout for shade 3, PRECISELY35 for shade 3.5, or PRECISELY45 for shade 4.5. Valid through 7/9.

I think I would actually purchase it separately as well. I’m, holding off repurchasing my favorite  Precisely my Brow pencil from Benefit until this is gone, but I suspect I will be ordering several products when I do place an order.  I know they are running a sale right now so it is hard to resist reordering, but I know once I do, I won’t use this pen and I don’t want to waste product. I wouldn’t purchase this item again, but I would purchase all of the products encased in it separately.

This week’s primer was an old favorite that I recently repurchased.  It is the No Pore blem Primer from touch in Sol.  It is weightless on the skin, blends in like a dream and leaves my skin feeling like silk. I like the slight pink tone as it doesn’t add darkness to my skin. It actually disappears and covers all my pores. It is excellent if you are doing a light makeup look.

I had two powders this week.  One loose and one pressed.  The loose powder was the Becca Pink Haze.  It is hands down one of my favorite Becca Products and once of my favorite loose powders.  It looks really pink in the jar.  Like scary pink.  It isn’t that pink on the skin. 

It just gives a light healthy looking glow to the skin.  It is one of my favorite summertime products because I can just use primer and the Becca Pink Haze as a super quick makeup look.  Because it gives a light flush I don’t need any other face products.  If you just want to look a little livelier when running to the grocery store, the primer and Pink Haze are a good combo.  Put the powder on when the primer is still moist and not set and it locks the powder in place so it doesn’t get all over your mask. Then just hit it with some mascara and boom, you are out of the door.

The second powder I used was the Zeesea pressed powder from the British Museum Collection. (Incidentally, I do have a coupon code for Zeesea products its MSMIMSY for 10% off if anyone is interested in checking them out.) I’ll admit, I bought it for the packaging. The packaging is gorgeous. I figured that even if I ended up not liking the product then I could just use it as a compact in my purse since it has such a nice mirror.  It turns out the powder is pretty good.  Having liked it so much I went back, thinking that since the eyeshadow palette was equally pretty I might try their formula, but I think The British Museum Collection has been discontinued.

I’m going to keep looking and I really hope they bring it back (seriously they had lipsticks carved with hieroglyphics too and I am kicking myself for not picking one up immediately).  They do have A Picasso themed collection that looks equally beautiful though and a nature themed one as well.  So I may branch out.  I’ve only tried their powder, which is a really good pressed powder, but all their packaging is stunning. 

But we must move on.

Specifically to the Shaina B Miami blush and highlighter palette. There are four products.  I liked the blush in the shade Brickell.  It was a nice blush.  Very pigmented so even a light tap with a brush put a lot of pigment on the skin. I used my fabulous looking pressed powder to tone down the blush most of the week.  I didn’t care for any other product in the palette. 

Rosa was still highly pigmented, just not my shade and I really didn’t get on with the highlighters.  You can apply them and they look highly pigmented but f you touch them in an attempt to blend, they disappear. I was not a fan.  I will be passing this palette on to a friend of mine after sanitizing it, but it will not be staying in my makeup rotation.

One thing that will be staying in my makeup rotation is the sample sized Nars bronzer in the shade Laguna.  It was fantasticly pigmented and super easy to blend.  As it is a small sample it generally falls to the bottom of the drawer.  It’s dark packaging conceals it from view.  I need to find some place to put it where I will use it.  Partially because I really like it and partially because I refuse to buy the full size until I’ve used up the sample. And I really want to buy the full size.  I loved the way I could go either super low key by blending it out or go super dramatic if I felt like it.  It is a very versatile bronzer I really like having around.

Returning from the dressing table this week was the Elf Camo Concealer. It is an excellent concealer. However, I was interrupted one morning as I was getting ready (My neighbor has a large tree that is apparently rotting and it chose this week to split down the middle and slam a large section of tree across the road in a very dramatic way.  It was pretty early so I got to see a lot of my neighbor’s pajamas and dressing gowns.  It was an event.) In all the fuss my concealer was left open and I didn’t notice it until the following morning.  It is now unusable.  My one consolation is that there wasn’t a lot of product left in it and it was getting kind of old.  So it is being transferred to the empties bin and at some point will be repurchased.

The mascara in this week’s makeup bag was the Rimmel Scandaleyes Wow Wings.  I really like the winged shape of the brush as it lets me flair out the lashes on the outside coroners better.  It needs two coats to look its best.  However you should really let one coat settle before applying the second.  If you don’t it tends to get a little clumpy.  So if you apply, then move on to lips, then return for a second coat all is fine. The mascara stayed on me all day with no flaking and I really liked it.  It was a mess when I tried to use it for my lower lashes.  The winged brush is fantastic for upper lashes, not so great for lower lashes.  Still it is a nice product and I am happy to keep it around. 

While we are talking about eyes, This week I used the Maybelline Master precise ink liner.  I thought it was black when I picked it up.  It is a gunmetal metallic.  That came as a bit of a surprise the first morning I used it. Color aside though, this is a fantastic liner.  It is as precise as its name implies, it doesn’t seep into the fine lines of my eyelids and once in place it stays there until I take it off.  I may have to look into other colors of this because it was a surprisingly good product. 

Finally my darlings we reach the lips.  My gloss this week was the So Juicy Plumping gloss from Colourpop. Usually I apply it to my lips before going out then once it has done it’s plumping wonders I remove it and put on whatever product I am wearing out of the house.  This week, I just used it as my gloss and my lips looked nice and juicy.  It is a little on the sticky side, but still nice to wear.  Especially as I wore it over the Il Makiage lip pencil in the shade Vintage.  The lip liner gives fabulous color for a your lips but better look but when worn on its own s really drying on the lips, it is after all a liner not a lipstick. With the Colourpop over it I really enjoyed it and didn’t feel like my lips were too dry.  So that was definitely a good combo for me.  Although I really need to relocate my pencil sharpener to the makeup bag so I don’t have to start an impromptu morning search.

Also in this week’s bag was a set of mini lip glazes from TreStique. There are four of them and they are a sheer wash of color ranging from light pink to the darker English rose.  This set seems tailor made for summer. They feel like a really good lip balm when you apply them to your lips.  They aren’t greasy or heavy at all and I tended to forget I was wearing them.  Don’t expect high pigment, because that is not their lane.  They are a light wash of pigment and they stick to that lane of traffic all the way. I think I might keep one of them in the makeup bag next week but not all four.  That way I still have one to use as a light tint but I am still giving other products a chance.

And that was this week’s makeup bag, the good, the not so great and the utterly fabulous.

Next week will see the return of the Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream, the Laura Geller Spackle Mist, the Benefit brow contour pro and one of the TreStique lip glazes. I think I am going to be bringing back the Pink Haze from Becca as well.

Joining these items will be the Tarteist Pro Palette, the Too Faced Cocoa Contour palette,two Bodyography lip liners,  a sugar coat liquid lipstick, a TreStique concealer, Porefessional pearl primer, and a Ciate Marbled light blush. Returning from the dressing table will be the wet ‘n wild liquid megaliner and the Wander Beauty Mile High Club Mascara. Personally, I think that sounds like a fun mix. Have a good Friday and I’ll see you back here for the Friday face Mask this afternoon.


Weekly Weight: 204.6 lbs

June 26th, 2020

Good morning everyone, it’s time for the weekly weigh in. This week I am pleased to see the scale once again moving in a downward direction. That makes me happy. I have noticed though that my weight loss is very weather dependent at the moment.

This week we had a cold front blow in. Although personally I think calling it a cold front requires a stretch of the imagination. We had a not quite as hot week with plenty of cloud cover in the sky even though somewhere else got the promised rain and we were stuck with the skin melting humidity. That would be more accurate.

At least they say sweat is a good way to flush out the pores.

If so then standing in the yard for ten minutes would have given everyone in my neighborhood a good skin cleanse.

But with the slightly cooler temps I walked more, walking more, burns calories and the scale once again started moving. I think that more than anything convinced me I need more of a structured indoor exercise plan. While I’ve been doing some weights and yoga, mostly it is on days when I didn’t feel like facing the heat. Since the early spring rains stopped, I’ve taken every opportunity to be outside that I can, mostly either walking on the nearly abandoned walking trail near my house or in the back garden. So it has been haphazard at best. Since June is the coolest summer month in my area with July being punishing and August absolutely brutal establishing an indoor schedule is essential.

Some friends mentioned two Chloe Ting challenges (one for two weeks and one for 28 days). I looked into it and they both looked interesting. I just wanted to wait until after my birthday to start. Mostly because I have no intention of exercising on my birthday and didn’t want to feel guilty about skipping a scheduled workout for ice cream cake and champagne.

I know, odd combination, but I’m the one who bakes so we get ice cream cake from this fantastic place in town each year for my birthday so I don’t have to make my own cake. (and because it is delicious.) And the Champagne is of course standard. Its how you know there is a celebration.At least in my family. we were never big on fireworks, but we always had the champagne. Admittedly, I think this is why we were so often invited to celebrations, especially since one of my grandfathers was a pastry chef.

Baked goods and champagne. That’s our covered dish sorted.

Seriously, I just wanted to start a new routine after my birthday. I figured I’ve got my celebration and at home spa day this weekend as well so I can start fresh on Monday as we edge into the heat of July. Even though I don’t really like exercise or weight loss challenges as I prefer my slow and steady routine, I like the idea of getting into the habit of getting up a little earlier to do a short workout everyday and I think this will be good for that. I am not expecting to lose massive inches and weight in two to four weeks. It is the routine of the challenge I want. I will of course take notes and report back in as I go, in case any of you are curious about this viral workout everyone seems to be talking about (at least everyone I know).

But that is for later. Today the last of my items needed for my spa weekend arrive. I thought I ordered early enough but they were delayed twice. But I checked and they are currently out for delivery. So the at home spa day will commence. Alos out for delivery, my soda stream canisters.

Oh yes, they were back in stock and soon, soooon my water will bubble with carbonation again. I didn’t realize how much easier carbonation made it to drink large quantities of water. While I have been reveling in my stash of Blackberry Hint Water (again sorry for taking it all) I really miss my Soda Stream Carbonation. But now just as the last of the air went out of our last tank, new tanks arrive.

Okay before I start waxing poetical about carbonation and water, although it might be too late for that, I’m returning to the stats. So… To the stats, batman!

Starting weight: 246.0 lbs

Weight last week: 205.4 lbs

Weight this week: 204.6 lbs

Weight lost this week: 0.8 lbs

Weight lost thus far: 41.4 lbs

Weight left to lose (apx) 81.6 lbs

Okay, well that is my check in for the week, along with rambling about cake, heat and water. I’m in for a heavy friday of writing and attempting to fill a plot gap the size of the grand canyon. I have an idea, I just hope it will stretch that far. Wish me luck. And I wish you luck in return for whatever you’ve got brewing on this hot and sunny friday.


Currently there are lots of sales going on as a lead up to the July 4th celebrations, I’ll post a fee noteworthy ones below. I actually put an order in to Julep last night and have a blush and bronzer coming my way soon.

Julep:

Look your best this summer for less with Julep. Get 40% off site wide with coupon code “JULEP40” at check out. Perfect your order with free shipping on all orders of $35+. Offer will be valid though 6/29.

Vanity Planet: Save 40% Sitewide at Vanity Planet’s 4th of July Sale! Use code ‘VPA40’ at checkout! Shop Now!

The Balm Autobalm Palette review

The Balm’s Autobalm Palette

I have to admit this palette was the source of great angst this week. I know, it’s just eye shadow you say. I know.

Still, great angst.

Let’s start with the biggest source of the angst. The packaging.

It is undeniably adorable.  All of The Balm’s packaging is.  And I know there is a little ribbon on the side for fingers to grasp while the metal container is opened.  I gripped the little ribbon. It is just a little too short to be helpful.  In addition by the time I reach my eyeshadow I have already applied moisturizer sunscreen, primer and foundation.  I have rinsed my hands. 

I have gotten really good at washing my hands lately. 

However my hands are still a little slick from being washed.  This palette was very hard to open.  There were some mornings I decided I didn’t need eyeshadow and grabbed the Blush palette and eyeliner instead and just let the shadow be because I was tired of fumbling with the metal. There needs to be a slightly larger indent or something to aid in the opening of this palette. If there was a lot of my angst would disappear.

This was even more frustrating, because in general I like the formula of The Balms eyeshadows.  They are usually really good.  I have the Meet Matt(e )trimony palette and several single shadows, all of which I adore.  This palette was no different.  I really liked all of the shadows.

The top row of metallics

The row of metallics worked excellently well, the two mattes were pigmented and lovely to wear.  I even liked the neutral cream primer in the palette.  I really liked all of the products in the palette. They didn’t swatch really well but they applied well.

The two mattes, yes there are two, one is just really a good match for my skin tone.

The selection of colors wasn’t exactly my favorite.  I liked all of them, but the only really light shade is Rodeo drive.  I found myself using the neutral St. Charles Matte, picking one of the colors as an accent shade (which sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t) and then accenting with Rodeo Drive.  Most of the shades, while nice, are dark enough that I wanted it towards my outer eye. They are buildable and easy to work with and I think they are all meant to stand alone instead of really being paired with other shadows. It’s like they were never really designed to work together.  They just happened to be put in the same box.

There is very little fall out and as a product, they are individually good. They aren’t as good as some of the other Balm eyeshadows I’ve tried. The others stay in place all day. These do tend to disappear towards the end of the day, even with a fixing spray, but for a few hours, your look is great. I have no idea why this formula is a little different than their other shadows, it might just be the metallics because the mattes appear to be fine.

It was a lot of metallic for the week for me. It wasn’t helped by the fact that I thought I picked up a black eyeliner and it turned out to be a gunmetal shade. I felt very shiny this week. (They call me Old IronEyes. At least when wearing the silver shade with the gunmetal liner.)

And not shiney in the Firefly Series way.  I think if I were going out I might like it better, but this was kind of a quiet week, without even a grocery visit to spice things up. Outside of my walks the farthest I went was to the mail box. 

Instead of using the metallics, I found myself just using St. Charles with Pennsylvania to darken the crease.  It was a nice look ad one I didn’t mind using repeatedly.  However, I think I would just buy the individual shades to use as two shades, which sort of defeats the palette.

Although truthfully with all of the issues I had getting it open, I’d have a hard time recommending this palette anyway.  I love the mattes, am fond of but not in love with the metallics, but not in this mix and not in this container.

I find this very frustrating because it just feels like the palette wasn’t thought through. St. Charles was the stand out winner of the palette and definitely a single shadow I will add to my The Balm collection of single shadows.  And honestly I may actually see if they sell the neutral cream primer as well.  It worked better than my usual concealer and I really enjoyed it. 

Well I enjoyed it when I could get the palette open to use it. I think a depotting is in this palette’s near future. I would use the metallics with the sticky Pretty Vulgar lid primer and I would use them as the finishing touch to a look created with other shadows.  I probably wouldn’t buy them individually. The Mattes, I would still use on their own and pick up individual replacements. Maybe I can use the metal box to store seeds in this autumn once I depot the shadows. It’s a sure bet they won’t spill out.


Diamond Candles has a special collection out at the moment. They created a collection of candles for Grace Anna. She is a girl in KY with a lot of health issues. She designed and created each one. This weekend she will be on the Mike Huckabee show (weekend of June 27th, 2020) with the candles. The link to the candle collection is below if you would like more information.

Inspired by Grace Anna’s Favorite Recipes – Buy her Candles Now!

BeautyCareChoices.com

A week of Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream

The Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream, both the smaple size I am currently using and the unopened full sized bottle for comparison

Spending a lot of time at home lately has caused me to do a lot of spring cleaning and reorganizing.  I’m sure I am not alone in this.  I think a lot of people decided similar things if conversations with friends about which Goodwill is currently accepting donations and the plethora of Youtube declutter videos are any indication. 

In my attempt to organize the chaos, I found that I accumulated quite a few sample sized products.  I rotated all of the open ones to the front of my dressing table and did my best to work through most of them, clearing out the no longer good products and finally using up the last of a few fabulous products I for some reason I appeared to be hoarding.

“I know there is only one, possibly two uses left in this liquid lipstick sample from smashbox, but I’m going to hold on to it in case of an emergency.”

This appears to be my subconscious thinking. I’m not entirely certain what sort of emergency I would actually react to with a twenty to thirty minute rummage through the contents of my catch all makeup drawer to find a sample size lipstick of any variety (although I really did like the lipstick and will be purchasing a full sized version once I clear out some space by using up older lipsticks).

I ended up rotating the almost empty sample into my makeup bag, using it up and making note of the shade color and brand in my reorder notebook before I chucked it out. And yes I have a reorder notebook.  I mark things down, especially lipstick shades, so I remember which I liked (mostly because I am the queen of ordering the wrong shade of lipstick).  I also have a section of things I’ve heard of but haven’t tried yet in my notebook. Because there are so many things out there that I want to try.

Mixed in with these half opened products I had several unopened sample sizes of BB and CC cream as well as some foundation samples. I put them all in a box, shook the box up and selected one at random.  The one I chose to try this past week was the Purlisse Perfect Glw BB Cream with SPF 30. 

And as soon as I chose it for my weekly makeup bag, my Boxycharm box arrived with a full sized version of the product inside.

Like magic.

This is actually more product than I needed to cover my face. About half that proved to be what I needed

I decided to go ahead and use the sample size and save the full sized one.  I figured if I didn’t like it then I would only waste the little sample rather than the large one .  That way I could always pass the unopened full size to someone else.

I have to say, I’m keeping the full sized version.

But I’m going to leave it sealed until I work through some of the other open products. So it is still less wasteful.

This was the first makeup item I have tried from Purlisse.  I actually had to check on that because Purlisse has been a frequent visitor to my vanity and for a while I was certain I’d seen it before.

When I looked through my notes though, it was all skin care. Almost all of which I really liked. The serum wasn’t my favorite, but all of the moisturizers I have tried, I would order again. Their specialty seems to be the ability to work with your skin in an unstable climate.

You know, as soon as I wrote that I thought, apocalyptic skincare.

I didn’t mean pack it for the end of days, I meant like spring and fall temperature and humidity shifting.

(Although now I have a 1950’s style atomic bomb style commercial playing in my head – Hi there Mrs. Smith, Packing for the Apocalypse are we? Well don’t forget to pack your apocalyptic skin care. You’ll just love the radiation blocking capacity and that new fresh scent! – For those following along its a black and white cartoon with a movie tone narrator voice over. Just so you get the full picture. Cause I’d hate for you to get confused.)

Okay back to the actual Purlisse Perfect Glow BB Cream.

Bare skin

And while most of you are thinking I should just get to the BB Cream, these were the thoughts going through my head when I picked the BB cream up.  I wondered if it would have the same flexibility, shall we say, as seem to be built into their moisturizers.  But lets see what they have to say about it.

According to the Purlisse website…

Complexion perfection for a gorgeous matte meets dewy finish! Your multi-tasking beauty balm that glides on like a tinted moisturizer with all the age-defying, coverage, sunscreen benefits of a foundation and BB cream! It’s perfect for getting that Instagram- filtered version of yourself, featuring our exclusive Asian Herb extracts complex.

For normal or dry skin types, wear over Purlisse moisturizers. For oily skin, wear alone. For extra coverage, wear under foundation.

As we are in summer, I thought a lighter BB cream might be a good idea.  I especially wanted something lighter because I added the new layer of sunscreen to my daily routine. (I am completely in love with the Volition sunscreen)  I did use the Purlisse Perfect Glow one day without the sunscreen so that I could gauge the difference both with and without the Volition Sunscreen. The Volition sunscreen didn’t have issues with this or any other product I tried it with.  The Purlisse did really well for my skin either way. 

Just sunscreen and foundation

It is a very light coverage, but it is coverage. I’ve tried some BB creams that either covered nothing and were therefore pointless or tried too hard and were too heavy, thus defeating the purpose of the product. This BB Cream covered my skin enough to make me feel confident in my skin, but was the perfect summer skin almost bare look.

Because I think I have larger pores, I still used a primer with this BB Cream.  I was fine without the primer, but I really preferred the look of my skin with the primer underneath.  I don’t think that is the fault of the cream, I think that is my personal preference.

I will say that applying it really does need a makeup sponge.  The brush just wasn’t a good idea as it just sort of streaked it across the face and using my hands just ended up applying too much product. 

Start of the day

To apply I just put a little dab on my hand, dipped the damp sponge into the product and then dabbed on my face, blending as I went.  I started in areas where I have a couple of healing eruptions and then worked out from there so that the red spots received a little more product but my skin looked evenly balanced. It is a light enough product that it feels weightless and it doesn’t settle into any lines or cause issues.

The Purlisse BB Cream comes in eleven different shades.  The shade I am using for my summer tanned skin is light medium. There are two shades lighter on the scale pictured on their chart.

end of the day

This gives me a little wiggle room should I want to pick up another tube once the summer wanes.  It’s nice to know that, but truthfully, I almost never reach for BB creams in the winter.  For me they always seem like a summer product. I have friends who wear them year round, but I really tend to forget about them once the weather turns. Although in all honesty, I’ve never found a BB cream I liked as much as I like this one. So possibly, I will try it after the weather turns. I just have to adjust my summer only mindset.

Because I’m using a sample sized tube of product, I ended up using a substantial portion of it this week.  But I didn’t use it all.  So I am going to go ahead and give it a second week in my makeup bag to use up the sample tube and remove it from my dressing table drawer. I suspect if it returns to the drawer it will sink into darkness only reappearing as it shuffles zombie like from the depths, its remaining product of no use. So it is better to use it now.

I still have the full bottle in the regular size so I’m sure it will make an appearance again later in the summer, but this way I won’t have half a tube lingering forgotten and alone in the drawer. 

This means that next week, I will be skipping the foundation review since it will be a repeat. I’ll be sure to add something else to the makeup bag to take its place in the reviews though. There is always either something new I’ll be delighted to talk about or an old favorite I can tell stories about. If any of you see anything in the makeup bag you want to hear more about let me know, I can always break it out for a seperate review. I’ll be choosing next week’s bag tonight so that I can post a picture with this week’s post.


BB Cream SPF 30

The Anti-sunscreen for people who hate sunscreen; Reviewing the Volition Prismatic Luminizing Shield with SPF 50

Volition Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF 50: This product was sent to me for reviewing purposes, the opinions however are all mine.

I have always had a love hate relationship with sunscreen.  As a kid I remember being lathered up before being sent out for summer play.  While I never minded my arms and legs being coated and I loved that my parents let me play outside longer if I was wearing it, I hated when the sunscreen was applied to my face. Invariably it would either get washed onto my lips where it would taste nasty or it would get washed into my eyes making them sting and burn for the rest of the day.

As I grew up, sunscreen got better and while most of it doesn’t taste any better than it did when I was a child, most of it stays in place.  Still I hate putting sunscreen on my face.  I know that is the one place I really need to put it, but I have to admit, I usually don’t.  I spray my whole body down with sunscreen, more vigilantly now that I had that painful early spring burn, but I still avoid my face. 

Instead I layer products like I’m creating the great wall of SPF.  “Oh this has SPF 10, I’ll put it on and then add this product that has SPF 30.” It’s a construction project.  I know I need to get over it, but I’ve had a hard time finding a product I like.

However, Volition Skincare sent over three products for me to try and the first item I pulled out of the box was the Volition Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF50. I had to laugh because right on the top of the box it says “Sunscreen for the Sunscreen Haters.”

It’s like they knew.

Or I’m not the only one to hate sunscreen.

I prefer the term skin care psychics, but that is just me. I should point out they don’t claim to be psychic an any way shape or form. But Volition is a really interesting company even without the tarot card possibility.

If you go to their main page there is a section where you can submit an idea for a product. It doesn’t matter who you are, you can submit an idea for a product you would like to see available for purchase.  The idea then gets submitted to a vote by their beauty community.  If it gets enough votes then their team goes to work creating the product. All of their products are certified clean and cruelty free with no animal testing and no parabens or sulfates. Incidentally, the links posted are for volitionbeauty.com which only ships to the US and Canada. If you are outside the US or Canada then @cultbeauty ships Volition Beauty worldwide, and @meccamaxima / @meccacosmetica ship to Australia and New Zealand. 

Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF 50|Free Shipping, Free Returns & Free Sampling

There is a whole section where you can shop the winners and I have to say, I really like going onto the site to see who came up with what. You can also take a skincare quiz to determine which of their products might be right for your particular concerns so you don’t spend a boat load of time staring at a product and trying to guess.

But back to the sunscreen for the sunscreen haters.

The box clearly looked like it was aimed at me.  I opened it and the first thing I saw was a little card telling me that this innovative product was created by a woman named Aja.  It had a picture of her and a little bit about her on the back. I thought that was really neat. It’s rare that you actually get a name to go with a product.

But Aja made this, or at least came up with the idea while a team of highly skilled professionals brought her idea to life.  But what do they have to say about what they created?

Bare face

The Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF50 (retail $35) is…

The anti-sunscreen for the sunscreen haters. It’s never greasy, smelly or thick. It’s daily protection you’ll actually want to wear. It is a weightless, breatheable formula with broad-spectrum sun protection, luminous, pearl-like finish and a light, neutral scent.  It addresses skin protection, dry skin, and dull skin and is good for all skin types.

Shake well. Apply over entire face 30 minutes before sun exposure. Reapply at least every 2 hours or as needed. Can be worn alone or under makeup. Use a water-resistant sunscreen if sweating or swimming.

Not too shabby.  And I like that it is SPF 50.  In my attempt to layer to build a wall of SPF on my face without actually using sunblock, I try to get as close to 50 as I can get. 

Before rubbing the sunscreen in, there is a white cast that disappears quickly

So knowing who made it and what it is supposed to do, I took the product out of the box.  I know appearances aren’t everything and that I shouldn’t focus on the shallow packaging, but this is a good looking bottle of sunscreen.

I have to admit, I wasn’t expecting that.

I think because sunscreen is such a utilitarian item that just gets tossed in a bag and kicked around at the beach or pool side that it always looks like a basic plastic squeeze bottle with maybe a pretty or fun decal on the front. This may be a tube you can squeeze, but everything about it says skin care. It looks like it belongs in the bathroom next to your serums and moisturizer and not something you’d chuck in a kid’s pool bag with the goggles.

Don’t get me wrong, those items have their place.  I have quite a few of them stationed around the house. They are an essential part of my summer. But I needed something to put in the bathroom with my skin care. Because like skin care, I needed to make it part of my routine. I knew that was the only way I was going to get into the habit of putting it on. So I took the bottle from the box, moved it into the bathroom and began using it.

For the past two weeks, this anti-sunscreen has been part of my morning routine.  I put it on after I finish my skin care, but before I put on makeup.  There is no real scent to the product so anyone out there who is sensitive to scents should have no problem. 

The consistency of the product is like a thin primer or a water cream moisturizer.  It has some body to it, but it leans towards the liquidy side. To apply, I dispensed a pea sized amount into my palm and rubbed my hands together then applied it to my face. It sort of spread out as it hit my hand anyway so I just let it follow it’s natural inclinations. Easy peasy. 

Just the sunscreen on my face

On first contact there is a little bit of a white cast. (see the above picture) The first time I applied it I started to get concerned that I was going to spend the day looking like a mime, however I rubbed it in a little bit and the white disappeared almost instantly.

While I don’t want to walk around with the white sunscreen face all day, I do like that at first touch it is a little white.  This lets me see where I’ve put it to ensure full coverage before I rub it in. 

True to their claims, it feels weightless on the skin and is not greasy.  It is however quite luminizing.  Just like the really pretty bottle, I wasn’t really expecting that. And yes I know it says it in the title, it is just brighter than I expected.

I tend to go for matte primers and foundations.  For me the matte balanced it out well.  With the matte foundation on top of it, I had no problems, it was actually quite nice paired with it and gave the matte product a little depth.  I could not use a luminizing primer or foundation with it as it was too luminizing for me.

Makeup over the sunscreen, I used the Purlisse BB Cream over it with no primer for this photo

I should also say that the day I tried a luminizing foundation, no one had issues with the extra luminosity but me. I even got a compliment on my glow, so I think that is really just my personal preference.  If you like luminosity then you are good, if you aren’t a fan, use a matte product over it.

No matter what product I used, the sunscreen sat well underneath the makeup.  I had no problems with reactions between the sunscreen and my foundation. They played well together and I didn’t break out in a welter of clogged pores. There were, in fact, no extra break outs. (The stress related ones I had spent the night with some Peace Out dots, but no new ones appeared.) 

In the description it is recommended that if you are going to sweat or go in the water you should look into a waterproof product.  While I didn’t go swimming while trying this (because that isn’t what it is meant for and at this time the pools near me are still closed) it is June in Tennessee and you can’t step outside without sweating.  If the heat lets you go then the humidity will insure the sweat rises to your brow, among other places.  As my neighbor likes to say, this is the season where you get the air you can wear, the unavoidable fashion accessory.

So there was sweat.

You know what there wasn’t?

Stinging eyes.

Well, the sweat stung a little because it’s salty, but it didn’t burn like acid.  There were a couple of days where it was hot enough to melt your skin off of your bones and I was standing outside with a mask on. I know some of it dripped into my eyes.  There is no doubt about that. The product not dripping would be an impossibility.  I think I sweated out water I drank three years ago on those days, so there was no defense for anything topical. 

But there were no burning, pain filled eyes, so I am taking that as a win.

And no I am not going to squirt it directly into my eyes to double check. 

Although I have to confess, I did put a little on my lips to taste since the mask kept my lips safe and secure, along with my lungs and the rest of me. It didn’t really taste of anything. I’m not going to go putting it on an ice cream sundae or anything, but the accidentally tasting wasn’t horrific.

Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF 50|Free Shipping, Free Returns & Free Sampling

To be honest, this sunscreen passed all of my tests with flying colors.  No gag worthy taste, no burning eyeballs and it was easy to remember to apply because it sat with my skin care and became part of my daily routine. Applying it became a habit, one I hope to maintain.

The Volition Prismatic Luminizing Shield didn’t make me break out. It didn’t make me feel greasy.  It felt weightless on my skin and it provided me with SPF 50 level protection for my face without having to do a construction game with other products. 

Don’t get me wrong, I still favor a lot of products with built in SPF, especially in the summer time, but I really like not having to rely on them. I really like having the good sunscreen underneath so that anything layered on top is just extra, not vital.

And oh yeah, no sun burn even though I spent loads of time outside in the hot, hot sun.

Seriously, this made sunscreen part of my skin care regimen instead of something I hated and tended to forget. I honestly didn’t think that was going to happen. I suppose the only question that remains is whether or not I’m allowed to send Aja a thank you note.

Because this was a very good idea.


Remember the links in this post are for volitionbeauty.com which only ships to the US and Canada. Mostly because I am located in the US. Even if you aren’t in the US it is well worth poking around on their site. If you are outside the US or Canada then @cultbeauty ships Volition Beauty worldwide, and @meccamaxima / @meccacosmetica ship to Australia and New Zealand. I love that this sunscreen is available worldwide.

Volition Beauty|Free Shipping, Free Returns & Free Sampling

My first Petit Vour Subscription Box: Reviewing the June 2020 Box

Petit Vour is a beauty subscription box that centers on clean beauty.  I’ve been aware of it for a while but I kept putting off trying it. There was no particular reason, I am just sometimes absent minded. In case you are wondering, I am trying to add and try out new boxes this year so it isn’t always BoxyCharm and IPSY. While I love them and will continue with them, I felt the need to branch out.

So Petit Vour is a monthly subscription box centering on cruelty free vegan beauty. They have two beauty boxes, the regular Petit Vour that is $18 per month and comes with four clean beauty products to try and the second is the PV Plus Beauty box for $25 per month.  It comes with 5-7 travel to full sized beauty products.  I decided to try out the $18 per month beauty box.  June was my first box and I have to say I was impressed with the compact size of the box. 

I know that sounds strange to say, but I like that there was very little waste with the box. Everything is recyclable from the box to the little cardboard scrunches inside.  As this is a box that focuses on clean beauty, I appreciated that they continue the theme with their packaging. And because of the way they do their packaging, it is not only recyclable, but it is safe to break up and add to my compost bin. Which I really like.

But what was inside my box?

First up, was the LipDrink Lip balm from Jane Iredale.  It is a full sized lip balm valued at $17.

I’ve tried Jane Iredale lip products before and I really like them.  I like the sleek silver packaging and the fact that the product smells like lemon balm. It is supposed to smell like lemon, but for some reason smells more like lemon balm to me. 

Maybe that is just me.  Either way I like the scent. It looks like pink lemonade though but only gives a barely noticeable blush to the lips. Its not really enough to call color but it is a little something. The fact that it is SPF 15 doesn’t hurt.

Next up is the Speak Deodorant  Cream.  It is a travel size valued at $12.  I’ve been interested in trying out some natural deodorants for a while but haven’t really gotten around to it. 

I suppose now that I actually have one in my possession, I have no excuse not to try it.  I will say that given the heat and humidity going where I am, it would definitely be a test. I’m pretty sure it’s a struggle for my regular deodorant.  Even though this is a travel size, I think that this actually has enough product to conduct a two week trial. I think two weeks is enough time to know if I like a deodorant.

I suspect two days will be enough time for those around me to know how they feel about my deodorant too. If it works, no one will know the difference, if it doesn’t, I’m sure I will hear about it. My loved ones aren’t the sort to let that type of thing pass. At least we are still social distancing so it will only affect the ones I love. And really, when planning a potential stink fest, you should really concentrate on the ones you love.

When I opened the Speak jar, the cream smelled sort of oatmeal like which I don’t hate.  I sense a trial coming on. I may have to be sneaky about it though to get a fair review from my Baby doll. His mom tried a natural deodorant a while back and it didn’t work all that well, so now he believes they are all the same. He’ll say it doesn’t work on principle. So I won’t tell him and see if he notices.

But for now we will move on to item number three. This is a Green Apple cleansing bar that comes from Juice Beauty.  It is valued at $3 and it smells exactly like a green apple.  I have used Juice Beauty Products before and found them to be pretty nice. I think that despite the small size of the bar of soap there is definitely enough of it for me to get enough uses from it to form an opinion if it.  (It is a little larger than a hotel soap bar, actually about like two hotel soap bars put together.)

There should also be enough uses in it for me to decide if I like the BKind Sensitive Skin Facial Scrub valued at $9.  I have to say it is a cute little tube and unlike a lot of small tubes it is packed full of product. There is very little empty air space in it. 

Finally there is the Lauren B Beauty Nail Growth Serum valued at $75.  I believe this is a full sized product.  I don’t know how well it works, but I look forward to giving it a go.  Nail and lash growth serums always intrigue me for some reason. Possibly because I like long lashes without wearing false eyelashes and I want long nails without wearing gel or acrylic. Okay so maybe it is perfectly understandable why they intrigue me.

When I take off my nail polish tonight I will take a picture and start applying it to my nails to see what happens.  I would be thrilled if it worked because my nails have really taken a beating lately.  It happens at the beginning of every summer.  Even with the gloves on I destroy my nails gardening until my plants are big enough that weeds are less of a threat.  Then of course I concentrate on chasing the neighborhood rabbits around with a hose to protect my lettuce beds. 

It’s the circle of life.

Or maybe just the life cycle of my garden.

I have to say I was really pleased with my first box.  In my $18 box I received $116 worth of products, two of which were full sized.  I’d heard of two of the brands, but the other three products were completely unknown to me so there was a mix of the familiar and the unknown. All of them are products I am excited to try out.

In addition, I can go onto the Petit Vour site and get points for reviewing, stocking the points to use on products.  I like the fact that these are clean beauty products.  I have to admit, I am still learning about a lot about clean beauty products and I really like being able to try out brands I’ve never heard of.  As this is my first box, I am not sure if they are more skin care oriented or if this just happened to be a skin care month. 

Either way I look forward to finding out.  And who knows in a few months from now perhaps I’ll give their $25 box a try.  For now I am happy to find out what more goodies the $18 box will bring my way.  It has definitely earned a few more months on my list of subscriptions.


Cruelty-Free Beauty Box