You can have too much of a good thing!

A couple of entries ago (here, if you’d like to read), I posted about how to make your own baking soda, and apple cider vinegar hair washes/rinses. I wanted to post an update about this to explain how I’ve made it work best for me!

For those of us who’ve played around with custom moisturizers, cleansers, hair elixirs, and other DIY goodies, I’m sure we have all realized just how potent and powerful essential oils can be. The point of switching to a “no ‘poo” cleansing method is to cleanse and condition without all the excess product. The last thing we want to do is weigh our hair down!

my hair – drying, post-shower, sans product, and super shiny + purdy! All sans shampoo + conditioner. 🙂

Natural highlights, from all the lemon juice I used this past winter!

I no longer add essential oils to the baking soda / water mixture. I just use baking soda and water, and pour enough of the product over my scalp and hair, and gently rub my scalp with my fingers as I wash.

As for the apple cider vinegar rinse – essential oils are completely optional for this too. I used both mixtures sans essential oils for months, and my hair was quite fabulous. I find that the extra moisture does help, though. And I’m always looking for ways to help others make their hair extra awesome.

For myself, I’ve added 1-2 drops of ONE essential oil of my choice into the ACV mixture. I find this isn’t too much, and my hair feels much more weightless than if I’ve added multiple EOs. This is a great opportunity to experiment and see which oil you most prefer! The ACV will handle your hair’s cuticles, detangle, and ensure your hair is fabulously shiny.

Thanks for reading!

Like me on Facebook: The Classy Anarchist

Follow me on Instagram: @theclassyanarchist

Twitter: @classyanarchist

Advertisements

Face Mask Talk: My first YouTube vlog!

July has been a busy month! Let’s hope you all enjoy this video; I am certain more are on their way! Recording this was a blast!

First, check out this pic from a “ladies night” spent with my boyfriend (the sexy Greek dude to the left of me) and a near and dear friend of ours. Nothing like a good spa night!

My Ode To Coconut Oil

I have been traveling, but I haven’t forgotten about you all!

It is high time for another crazy rant about my favourite skin care product of all time (and no, it is not something that is available at Sephora): coconut oil. Not only is this a very affordable product, new benefits to consuming this oil are being discovered all the time. I just wanted to share with you some of my favourite ways of using it, and exactly how I work with this tasty (and nutritious) treat.

My Favourite Uses for Coconut Oil

  • Makeup remover: lightly dip a cotton pad in coconut oil, and wipe away that mascara and eye makeup!
  • Face & body moisturizer: slather on some coconut oil from top to bottom after a shower, and before bed. I’ve been doing this for over a year, and my skin is so soft!
  • Winter moisturizer: use prior to applying your regular moisturizer in the winter, for extra hydration!
  • In food: use coconut oil instead of another cooking oil, or add to smoothies for extra energy!
  • Hair: saturate your scalp & hair in coconut oil, cover with a hot towel, then wash out with shampoo after 10-20 minutes.

For more information on this amazing oil, visit The Coconut Research Center!

Guys and gals! Give your hair a break, with a hair detox treatment!

**Check out my update to this entry here, where I discuss using self-control when one has an essential oil obsession like I do!

Do you use a lot of product in your hair? Is your hair dry, frizzy, and starting to resemble hay? Even if it isn’t, it is important to consider what I’d call a hair detox. I alternate using this hair detox with shampoos and conditioners that are simple and are not harsh. This helps keep your hair looking its best in between haircuts; I noticed so much improvement in my hair’s texture. Not to mention, apple cider vinegar is an amazing detangler, because it helps seal and close the cuticle surrounding the hair shaft; making it shinier, and very easy to manage.

A hair detox, The Classy Anarchist style, is a way for you to keep your hair looking and feeling awesome, without all the shampoos, conditioners, and styling products you typically use. This gives your precious hair time to recover, and

What you will need:

  • Organic Apple Cider Vinegar or ACV (I used Braggs)
  • Baking Soda (any brand will do)
  • 2 empty lemon juice bottles; labelled (ie the RealLemon bottles with the special caps)
  • an assortment of essential oils (I used tea tree, lavender, and sea buckthorn)

First, make sure the lemon juice bottles are all rinsed out. One will be used for your baking soda wash (and shampoo replacement), and the other will be used for your apple cider vinegar rinse (conditioner equivalent). Each of these lemon juice bottles holds 440ml. As for the ratio of water: baking soda, and water: acv, I suggest starting out with a ratio of 1 cup water: 1 tbsp baking soda, and the same ratio for water: acv. You can then experiment by adding more or less baking soda / acv to the mix.

Baking Soda Wash:

  • Pour 1 TBSP baking soda into bottle
  • Fill almost to the top with lukewarm or cold water (it will just become room temperature anyways, and this is better for your hair cuticle than hot water).
  • Add in 3-6 drops of your favourite essential oils (I added about 5 drops of tea tree oil to help cleanse my hair and scalp, without being overly drying).
  • Shake it up! And you’re good to go.

Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse:

  • Same as with the baking soda wash, except add 1 TBSP acv to the second empty lemon juice bottle.
  • Fill with cold water.
  • Top off with some essential oils. I used 5 drops of lavender oil, and 4 of seabuckthorn seed oil. These oils will help soften my hair, help prevent dandruff, and other possible damages. Essential oils don’t have to be expensive (try Vitacost, or Well.ca), so it can be simple and fun to switch it up.

To use your homemade hair detoxes, shower as you normally would. First, rinse with the baking soda mix, while focusing on your scalp. Use just enough to saturate and massage your scalp with (a full preparation of this stuff lasts me about 4-5 washes). Next, rinse with the acv mix, focus on scalp and ends. Once you’ve used enough to saturate your hair, do whatever other shower business you need to take care of, and rinse the acv out of your hair with cold water (this may take some getting used to, but it’s definitely a good refresher in the mornings).

For more information on what essential oils might be best for your hair, check this nifty list out. Go here for some science-y talk about the effectiveness of acv on your hair.

*For those extremely put off by the sent of acv (this scent does not linger in your hair, by the way), you may replace it with white vinegar, or lemon juice. Lemon juice can colour your hair over time (I’ve noticed this on my hair), but when you have dark hair like myself, you ought to use with caution because your hair could turn more orange than the blonde you hoped for.

And there you have it! Happy hair days, everyone!

Derma E & Yes To Carrots: A guy’s perspective!

I am asked by everyone how they ought to take care of their skin, and what would work for their particular skin type. Lately, I’m being asked by more men than women! I thought it would be great to get a male perspective on some of my favourite products, and since I’m 100% woman, I gave about a two week sample of two of said favourites to a male friend of mine. I sent him three questions to answer about the samples.

The products, as well as my thoughts on them, are as follows:

  • Derma E’s Very Clear Problem Skin Cleanser: It isn’t often that I purchase a product twice, but this cleanser works great when I use it twice a day, and leave it on for 5-10 minutes as a pseudo-mask at night. It is creamy, rich, cooling (because of the tea tree oil), and gets rid of blemishes better than any other cleanser or mask I have tried!

Currently on sale on Derma E’s website, for $12.50!

and

  • Yes To Carrots’ Repairing Night Cream: Such a light, yet hydrating cream! I bought this for under $15 at Shoppers, and it works so well with my dry skin (I use it as a day moisturizer and a night moisturizer), that I don’t even need to apply extra coconut oil or intensive moisturizer to my face for adequate hydration (as I most often do).

Click on the photo to learn more about this night cream!

And the questions, plus his answers:

1) What was your favourite thing about using each of these products?

Derma E Cleanser: “Other than its effects on my pimples, my favourite part would have to be the tea tree oil! At first, this cleanser smelled like something you would find at the Home Depot in the paint section (ha ha, good one, Jake!). I don’t mean this in a negative way because I actually like its smell. After the first night, I noticed this pimple yard below my bottom lip completely gone (not even exaggerating). I’ve never tried anything like this before and kind of thought it should have been illegal. Thankfully, it isn’t! I will surely be using this from now on and wished it were introduced to me ten years ago.”

Yes To Carrots Moisturizer: “I really enjoy the smell of this cream. It feels really thick which is exactly why I do not need to use a lot. Luckily it will last me a while! After cleaning my face and a good shave, applying this moisturizer makes me want to touch my face all day. I like how it isn’t shiny either so it’s hard to tell that I’m using anything at all. My face does get dry all year around and especially during winter so I am sold on this product!”

2) If you could change something about either of these products to improve them, what would it be?

Derma E Cleanser: “I’m pretty sure that I was using the right amount but I would not mind if the cleanser either bubbles up or just stays white just to let me know that all areas of my face have been covered while cleaning.”

Yes To Carrots Moisturizer: “I can’t really think of anything here. Smells great, feels great!”

3) Did you notice an improvement in the condition of your skin, and how it felt or looked?

“After using the two products together I have definitely noticed an improvement in my skin. I never really was into cleaning and taking care of my face before but after being introduced to these items, I won’t stop using them. I was skeptical at first and one should be until one gives it a fair shot.”

Jake has since purchased both of these products! As far as everything except shaving-related products, guys don’t have to stick to male-specific skin care lines to take care of their skin. It also doesn’t have to be expensive.

Expect more talk from willing male testers and reviewers soon!

Arbonne’s RE9 Collection

I wrote about Arbonne’s FC5 collection awhile back, as well as my experience hosting a party for myself and my mother. I had a sweet Arbonne representative named Denise (whose information I will post below, in case any of you are interested in placing Arbonne orders, and you have questions) come by, and pamper my mother and I on a lovely spring afternoon.

Let me please say, that while I do not think the entire FC5 collection was good for my skin type / preferences, there were a few items I did really enjoy. On top of that, their cruelty-free message and uncompromising ingredient standard far surpasses that of many cosmetic companies, and I have to commend them for that.

With that said, I bring you my thoughts and experience with their RE9 Collection! Here are the goodies I sampled:

  • Smoothing Facial Cleanser
  • Restorative Day Creme with SPF 20
  • Corrective Eye Creme
  • Regenerating Toner
  • Night Repair Creme
  • Intensive Renewal Serum

The entire line has a delightfully light and calming seabuckthorn-ish organge-creamsicle scent. I preferred this scent to the intense fruity pizzazz from the FC5 line. One of my favourite scents is lavender; I’m a grandmother at heart.

My favourite product from this collection has to be the Intensive Renewal Serum. This was a delightfully creamy serum that didn’t dry out my skin, and gave my skin such a soft texture. I am 29 (as of today – Happy Birthday to me!), so I’ve been told that I need to start looking at a line of skin care catering to anti-aging, but I find that most of these lines lack the intense hydration and attention to sensitive skin that my skin needs! I’m not quite sure if it was a coincidence or not, but I also broke out (and I don’t break out often), while testing out this line. I think lack of hydration was a major culprit.

I also enjoyed the Night Repair Creme, which did hydrate, but it was the least level of hydration that I’d prefer (I actually needed to use that during the day, because the Day Creme was not at all moisturizing enough).

The least favourite in this collection was the Smoothing Facial Cleanser. It wasn’t hydrating enough, and didn’t impress me (especially for the price!).

If your skin isn’t as extremely in need of hydration like mine, and you are interested in investing in an anti-aging line, I would definitely suggest RE9. This line is quite expensive, but if you’ve got the money to invest – go for it!

If you have any questions about Arbonne, their products, or want help placing an order, send the wonderful Arbonne representative Denise Wreford an email, at denisewreford@gmail.com. Her Sponsor ID is 115484888!

Boy, do these Clean Well!

I have gone wipe crazy!

While I don’t really like getting ripped off, I picked these up at a health food store local to me (one of the many). They were almost 50% off, so I couldn’t resist! Now, I’ve gotten really into wipes for so many things. They’re great for cleaning, but I was always looking for eco-friendly, cruelty-free, and ingredient-quality brands!

Notice how they say they work for hands and face – well boy, did I take advantage of that! They’re great for removing makeup, though I’d use them at most once a day on my face.

There is no alcohol in this product – so it will not dry out your skin like so many  skin care cleansers, toners, wipes, moisturizers, etc. And more, its antibacterial qualities will help even better with those blemishes, than a regular facial wipe.

The primary ingredient in these wipes, which provides the antibacterial germ killing property, is thymus vulagris oil, or, thyme (as we know from our mom’s kitchen)!  Here‘s some info on thyme’s benefits!

Wipes are convenient, and easy to use. This brand’s kid-friendly, moisturizing, and sensitive skin  formula has me sold!

Check out CleanWell’s site, to browse and purchase more of their classy-approved products!

Got zits?

I sure did!

Recently, I went through a pretty bad (for me) breakout! And I have a special routine for these situations that is relaxing, gentle, quick, and effective!

Here’s what you need!

the essential oils I used this time

  • a big-ish sized plastic salad bowl (that can hold very hot water)
  • a kettle (or something to boil water with)
  • your favourite essential oils (tea tree oil, patchouli, lavender, etc..)
  • a clay-based face mask (I mixed Derma E’s Hydrating Mask with St Ives’ Mineral Clay Firming Mask)
  • a medium-sized towel
  • your favourite spot treatment (I used Derma E’s Very Clear Spot Blemish Treatment)
  • about 25 minutes

What you do:

Make sure your face is washed! Use whatever cleanser you enjoy, as long as it cleans well (I’d sure as hell hope it does!).

First, you take the bowl I was talking about, and fill it up with almost boiled water from the kettle!

Then, put a 1-2 drops of your favourite essential oils. Tea Tree Oil is very strong, but great for breakouts, so I use 3 drops at most of it. Add about 4 drops of lavender, and this time I put in 3 drops of seabuckthorn seed oil.

STIR a little bit.

Place the bowl on a desk or table, and pull up a chair. Grab that towel, and put it over your head, as you move your head over (and a little in) the bowl to soak up the steamy essential-oily goodness.

Relax over the bowl for about 10 minutes. You’ll be sweaty. You’ll be dripping. But boy, does it feel good. Once the 10 minutes are up, you can dump the water, and rinse your face with warm water, and dab with a towel. Then you want to pick out your favourite face mask, as you can see me wearing here, and slather on a layer of that.

this gets rid of blemishes, without drying your skin!

Give the mask about 10-15 minutes. Rinse of with warm water and a soft wash cloth.

Dab your face dry, and moisturize your face as per usual with your favourite moisturizer (to moisturize this time I used Yes To Carrots’ Repairing Night Cream (which is amazing).

Now grab your spot blemish treatment!

Apply that as directed (usually a teensy bit directly on the blemishes). For an added touch, spray your face with some rose or lavender water. Curl up into bed! Sweet dreams!

And that’s it. This isn’t guaranteed to get rid of your blemishes in one night, but it speeds up the process tremendously. If you catch the blemish early enough, it very well could put an end to it overnight.

Hope you enjoyed this! ❤

My Arbonne Experience – Part One

I am always surprised when I learn of a beauty company that is right up my alley, but has been beyond my radar for so long! I heard about Arbonne from a friend of mine, who had told me his sister was a representative for the company. I bring up my blog quite often, because it’s such a big part of my life, and a great way to network with great people.

I arranged for a product party to be hosted at my house, and the lovely respresentative Denise came with an also lovely assortment of Arbonne goodies! She arrived to show my mother and I several of their lines, including the RE9 line, the FC5 line, ABC Arbonne Baby Care, the Seasource Detox Spa line of products, their makeup, and more! The product party experience was a wonderful (and complimentary) way to learn about Arbonne’s ethics and the company; a company that follows Swiss standards of skin care and beauty – a much higher standard than we see here in North America. My mother and I were pampered with face masks, foot soaks, and hand massages. Such a delightful afternoon! Especially in the middle of my final exams.

Fun fact about Arbonne’s products: they are 100% VEGAN-CERTIFIED!

To read more about the company, and it’s ethics, check out this link.

While there are endless products to test and try, I was provided with two of their major skin care lines to sample and review.

Here I will be talking about their FC5 Line, namely the Hydrating Cleanser + Freshener, Nurturing Day Lotion with SPF 20, and the Moisturizing Night Creme.

What surprised me the most about these three products (and really, all the Arbonne products I tried), was how little of each product I needed each time for sufficient use.

Hydrating Cleanser + Freshener

  • contains fresh strawberry cell extracts, and a Moisture Fresh Complex
  • so gentle, and creamy; it smells exactly like fresh strawberries – a smell that had me smiling every time!
  • Check out the complete ingredient list
    – impressive!
  • Washes off easily; left my skin moist and happy

Nurturing Day Lotion with SPF 20

  • with fresh kiwi cell extracts and Moisture Fresh Complex
  • HALF a dime-size was enough for my entire face – yes, folks!
  • after applying it, my face felt hydrated, bright, and nourished – but these benefits didn’t last as long as I’d hoped.
  • Delicious ingredients!

Moisturizing Night Creme

  • with fresh mango cell extracts and Moisture Fresh Complex
  • a heavier, more hydrating cream than the day lotion (as expected for a night cream); I found my skin preferred this cream more.
  • Here‘s what’s in this night cream!

The samples I used (which took 3.5 weeks to go through, ps!), were 6ml size sample packs.

So what do I think overall?

  • Fabulous ingredients (paraben-free, loaded with essential oils, and nutritious extracts)!
  • These are great products for someone with normal / minimally dry skin, that is not unusually sensitive (like mine can be). I did not find the FC5 products to be hydrating enough for myself, but this could be due to my regular routine being very essential oil heavy; and my skin has some extremely weird “sensitivities” that I’ve learned to treat with my own unique assortment of products. I’m still looking forward to incorporating other Arbonne products into my regular regimen, despite this! 🙂
  • For those with skin aside from dry skin: there is also an FC5 line for oily/combination skin!
  • You will take forever to go through even one of these products – such little is needed each time; this is great for the environment, and our precious wallets.
  • These goodies run from $31 to $51 CAN. If your skin is more balanced, and less dry, I’d definitely consider making these products part of your regular skin care regimen.

If you’d like to get your hands on some FC5, learn more about Arbonne, and maybe even host a party yourself, check out their site, and to place an order, contact the wonderful Denise Wreford. Her Arbonne Sponsor ID is 115484888, and you can reach her via email at denisewreford@gmail.com.

Keep your eyes peeled, my lovelies – I will be dishing out my experience & details on the RE9 line, plus what Arbonne goodies are on my birthday list!

Face Mask Solidarity: Show me what mask is on your face!

My face is sporting derma e’s Hyaluronic Hydrating mask! $12.99 at Nutrition House!

I have a face mask obsession, and I want to share it with you all. I’ve made several entries about face masks, from making my own, to the ones I’ve bought in store. I can’t get enough of them! The mask I’m wearing in the picture is one of my my favourites. It’s packed with tons of great stuff! Olive oil, avocado oil, hyaluronic acid, chamomile flower extract; just to name a few. It goes on so smooth, and has a very calming light scent.

I’d love to know what all of your favourite face masks are, and if you’re a beauty blogger, feel free to make your own blog post wearing your favourite mask and showing me your face mask solidarity!