Green Beauty Stocking Stuffers


How gorgeous are these hand-embroidered stockings?  I am so excited to open gifts with Annabel this year and it was time to invest in Christmas stockings for our little family.  I bought two in taupe and two in the multi-color.  Yes, we only have one child, and no, I’m not pregnant.  Just planning ahead ;)  I bought mine locally at Celadon, but you can also purchase them at Nativa, which is a fair trade boutique and website specializing in gorgeous traditional Mexican artisan-made goods for men, women, children and the home.  Cost: $72.  Purchase them here.

So, I know you haven’t bought your stocking stuffers yet and you are already over-budget and you have no time left.  Luckily, Pemberley Jones has some awesome, affordable stocking stuffer ideas, and if you order by 10:00 AM on December 19th, you’ll have them in time for the big day.


Weleda Skin Food is one of my all-time favorite intensive moisturizers.  Rough, dry, cracked hands and feet are miraculously healed and it lasts through a few hand-washes.  The recyclable tube is small enough to put in a purse, briefcase or desk drawer.  Cost: $19 for 2.5 oz.  Purchase it here.


RGB Cosmetics Nail Polishes come in the most on-trend, sophisticated colors and they are Five-Free. (No Formaldehyde, no Toluene, no DBP, no formaldehyde resin and no Camphor.)  I love Too Red, which looks chic any time of year.  Cost: $18 for .4 oz.  Purchase it here.


Speaking of RGB, the Nailed It! gift set is such a luxe, useful stocking stuffer.  It contains base coat, top coat, and (5) of RGB’s color removal pads.  Each of RGB’s pre-moistened 100% cotton perforated pads remove 2 coats of nail color from ten nails and their formula contains no harsh acetate or acetone and no artificial scents or dyes.  Retail Value: $46.  Cost: $24.50.  Purchase it here.


Meow Meow Tweet’s Baking Soda Free Deodorant Cream is the best natural deodorant I’ve ever used and the only one I’ve repurchased (and you know I’ve tried a lot of them).  This formula is perfect for sensitive skin and its barely-there scent makes it great for both sexes.  Cost: $13 for 2.4 oz.  Purchase it here.


One of the all-time best Green Beauty inventions: Waxelene non-petroleum jelly.  With hundreds of possible uses, this petroleum and mineral oil-free jelly is better for the environment and better for our bodies and it works.  Cost: $16 for 9 oz.  Purchase it here.


Acure’s Unscented Argan Oil Cleansing Wipes are great before or after a workout or for you baby’s sticky face.  And while they don’t eliminate the need to properly cleanse, (no wipe does) they are better than nothing if you are too drunk to wash your face after Christmas Eve dinner.  I don’t know what you’re talking about – that has never happened to me.  Cost: $9 for 30 wipes.  Purchase here.


Have you been trying to convince your man to switch out even just one product?  Weleda’s Green Your Guy Gift Set is a great way to get him to sample a few Clean formulas and it saves you from filling his stocking with batteries and breath mints like every other year.  This kit contains Weleda’s Shave Cream, Moisture Cream and Sage Deodorant.  (Retail Value: $49.50)  Cost: $32.  Purchase it here.



The Jasmine Garden Botanical Mist


When Spirit Demerson gifted me May Lindstrom Skin’s The Jasmine Garden Botanical Mist a few months ago, I was definitely excited to give it a test-drive.  I love May’s other products, I’m a big believer in toner, and I had heard rumors that the scent was euphoria-inducing.  What I didn’t realize was that is the perfect toner for those of us with the occasional (or never-ending) breakout.  This is definitely the best toner I’ve tried for my own personal skin type.  Full disclosure: When I finished the bottle, it took me a few extra weeks to throw it into the recycle because I kept trying to pump out one last drop.  (Soooo now you know I’m crazy…)

Why is The Jasmine Garden so effective for those with problem-skin?  Witch Hazel and Silver.  This sounds like a magical potion because…. it is.  Witch Hazel has been used for thousands of years for its calming, soothing astringent properties.  It is highly anti-inflammatory and is high in antioxidants as well.  Colloidal Silver (silver particles suspended in liquid) is incredibly antibacterial and it doesn’t present a toxic threat to the human body like many other non-essential metals do.  (Side note: a few years ago, I had a terrible eye infection.  Not even the strongest antibiotics worked.  My naturopath told me to start washing my eyes out with colloidal silver liquid and I haven’t had a problem since.)  Silver is also known for its gentle healing properties.

There is really no wrong way to use toner, but I like to spray it on a clean face before applying serum or moisturizer (it enhances the power of whatever you’re applying).  I also use it to set, refresh or touch up my makeup.  Beware: the jasmine, vanilla and cocoa fragrance will make you really happy and you may just start spraying it everywhere.  And you’ll be really sad when you’ve run out.  ;)  Cost: $60 for 3.38 oz.  Purchase it here.

Ingredients: pure water (aqua),* hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel), argentum metallicum (silver), jasmine (jasmine) grandiflorum absolute, caprylic/capric triglyceride, jasminum officinale (jasmine) extract, *rosa damascena (rose) oil,* cananga odorata (ylang-ylang) oil,* vanilla planifolia (vanilla) CO2 total essential oil, theobroma cacao (cocoa) oil.  *Certified Organic.  This product is gluten-free and vegan.


Good For You Friday: Holiday Edition Part II


Last Friday, we talked about how difficult it can be to eat well during the holidays and once again, my friends at The Whole Tulip have come to our  rescue.  Adri and Carolyn claim that with just a few substitutions to our favorite recipes, we can remain healthy and trim over the holidays without feeling like we are depriving ourselves of the celebration.  I’m all for that.

So, have you ever heard of “skinny” spinach-artichoke dip?  Me neither.  Without the mayo and a ton of cheese, would it even be worth serving?  The answer is yes.  For those who are egg-free, this recipe is perfect.  Note: it is not dairy-free; it does contain some cheese.  However, mozzarella is usually less allergenic and less fattening than a more dense cheese, such as cheddar.  So, I’m telling myself the dairy in this recipe ain’t so bad.  ;)

I love this recipe because it does not have mayo and instead uses white beans. So not only does that give it an extra health benefit over the traditional dip, it also tastes better too. This is also a great appetizer you can make ahead and then put in the oven before guests arrive.  – The Whole Tulip

|No Mayo Spinach & Artichoke Dip|

5 cups spinach (about 15 ounces if you are buying bagged or boxed)
1 1/2 cups cannellini (white) beans or 1 15-oz can (we like Eden organics)
1 can or jar artichoke hearts packed in water
1 garlic clove
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley plus more for garnish.
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup freshly grated low moisture mozzarella cheese
Sliced bread or Mary’s gone crackers (for a gluten free option) for serving.

Preheat oven to 400.

In a large pot with a steamer insert, steam the spinach until just wilted, 1-2 minutes. You may need to do this in batches depeding on the size of your pot. Transfer to a colander and let cool and drain. When it is cool enough to touch, squeeze out the water with your hands, chop, and set aside.

Drain the beans and artichoke hearts. Combine the garlic, red pepper, salt and parsley in a food processor and pulse to coarsley chop (note, I’ve tried this in the vitamix and it does not work as well). Add the beans, artichoke hearts, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest to the processor and give it a few pulses until it forms a chunky puree. Transfer the mixture to a bowl.

Stir together the parmesan and mozzarella. Add half the cheese mixture to the bean mixture, stir to combine.

Transfer mixture to an oven proof dish and spinkle with remaining cheese mixture. Bake until just browned and bubbly, 20-25 minutes. Garnich with remaining parsley.


Gift Guide: For Your Number One Girl


No matter who she is, your girlfriend, your sister, your best friend, your granny, your wife, your daughter, yo’ momma or yo’ baby-momma, she’s your number one, and she deserves to feel like it!  These are all great gifts that any woman would be lucky to own.  They are all available at Ecodiva Beauty.

bkr glass water bottle in Holiday: my favorite water bottle ever is a statement against a disposable world, against transporting water between continents and against the chemicals we ingest when we base our decisions on convenience.  500mL (16 oz) glass bottle + silicone sleeve.  Cost: $30.  Purchase it here.

One Love Organics Essentials to Go Travel Kit: travel sizes of some of my favorite products in a cute travel case: Easy Does It Foaming Cleanser, Brand New Day Microderma Scrub and Masque, Skin Savior Waterless Multi Balm and an instruction card for the recommended OLO beauty routine.  Cost: $50.  Purchase it here.

Zoe Organics Deluxe Baby Gift Set: This is a perfect gift for a new mama or mama-to-be.  Zoe Organics is gentle and effective, and organic (obviously).  The kit contains an organic velour washcloth, baby wash, diaper balm (a personal favorite) baby oil, everything balm and baby bath tea, all housed in a cute canvas bucket.  Cost: $85.  Purchase it here.

Kahina Glow Box: In my humble opinion, one of the best gift sets out there, period.  It contains Organic, Fair-Trade Argan oil, Brightening Serum (which is incredible) and a handmade rosemary-lavender-argan soap.  I wrote a whole post about it here.  Cost: $75.  Purchase it here.

One Love Organics + Plum Pretty Sugar Love for Pretty Limited Edition Gift Set: A gorgeous indian cotton voile robe and the 2-in-1 Brand New Day Microderma Scrub and Masque elevate the act of getting ready to true primping.  Cost: $109.  Purchase it here.

May Lindstrom Skin – The Collection: To indulge in this gift set is pure luxury.  May hand-mixes every batch of top-notch natural ingredients into the most dreamy and effective concoctions.  The gift isn’t just beautiful skin, it’s a ritual, time for herself.  Cost: $680.  Purchase it here.

Kjaer Weiss Essential Duo #3: Worn together or alone, these colors rock.  Onyx is one of my favorite Kjaer Weiss Eyeshadows to line the eye with and Romance Lip Tint gives lips a modern pop of color.  Cost: $75.  Purchase it here.

How much more shopping do you have left to do?  (AKA, what other gift guides do I need to create?)  ;)


Mun: An Antiaging Dynamic Duo

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If you are looking for a crazy-effective,  SIMPLE antiaging skincare regimen, look no further than MUN.  I’ve long been a fan of MUN’s No. 1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum.  This silky serum absorbs instantly and perfectly primes the skin for makeup, but it also actually improves your complexion; it is amazing for evening out skin tone and reducing the appearance of (and preventing) fine lines.  I actually use this serum in place of an eye cream and it has done wonders for my under-eye circles.  You can seriously see a difference in your skin in about a week!  Cost: $95 for 20 ml.  Purchase it here.

Ingredients: Prickly Pear Seed Oil, Argan Oil, Rose Oil, all ECOCERT Organic.

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MUN also just launched their No. 11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner and it is equally impressive.  I found that it actually enhances the effects of the Aknari Brightening Youth Serum.  To make this special toner, roses are hand-harvested in The Valley of the Roses, the famed flower region in Bulgaria.  Their unique hydrating and soothing powers are steam-distilled into the essential oil that enriches the rosewater base.  Other active, organic ingredients include prickly pear stem extract and hyaluronic acid, which create a balancing, soothing, hydrating elixir for the skin.  It is great for all skin types, even those with sensitive skin who are normally wary of toners.  Cost: $68 for 100 ml.  Purchase it here.

Ingredients: De-ionized Water, Rose Hydrosol* (Rose Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice*, Maltodextrin, Opuntia Ficus-Indica (Prickly Pear) Stem Extract, Lycium Barbarum Fruit (Goji Berry) Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract*, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower Extract, Bellis Perennis (Daisy) Flower Extract, Xanthan Gum, Vegetable Glycerin, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzyl Alcohol.
(*CERTIFIED ORGANIC) 100% Natural. 92.5% organically derived. Vegan

To receive 20% off your MUN order, enter the code HOLIDAY2014 at checkout now through December 31.


MUN is the brainchild of Munemi Imai, an in-demand makeup artist who works with clients like Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar on a daily basis.  She is a beautiful person, inside and out, and she is the best advertisement for her skincare line.  She looks like she is about twenty-four!  To learn more about her and about Mun, read on for a quick Q&A.

BB: Have you always been interested in Clean living and Green Beauty, or was there a specific catalyst that caused you to make the switch?

MI: My mother was really into organic and locally sourced food and against all those chemical detergents and cleaning materials when I was growing up. But my time to realize and appreciate it came much later in my life.  I was in my mid-30’s.  One winter, I experienced a brief period of illness and couldn’t really figure out what was wrong.  This got me scared and I changed my diet to eating really clean for a couple of months.  I didn’t just feel better physically, but mentally.  I read some books about how many harmful ingredients we consume from food and personal care products and I got heavy into buying and consuming organic produce as much as possible.

BB: Where did the idea to create the No. 1 Aknari serum come from?  Did you always want to start your own product line?

MI: I started brewing an idea of creating my own thing while I was consulting for a Japanese makeup line, and I started talking to people and researched how the process work.  After experiencing the illness I just mentioned, it changed a lot and defined the direction.  I started taking workshops for Ayurveda and took a course in aromatherapy. I started buying raw materials and mixed for my own skin care needs.  I saw the changes to my skin but I was still seeing dark circles under-eyes happening and fine lines forming, which I didn’t have in my early 30’s.  I looked around and there were plenty of Clean and really nice products out there but nothing was powerful enough.  I wanted to focus on creating a product with the purest raw, 100% natural and organic contents that deliver results. That was the goal to create No.1 Aknari.

BB: As a top fashion and celebrity makeup artist, what are your top five favorite products?

MI: MUN No.11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner. MUN No.1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum. Illuminare Concealing Mineral Foundation. tarte Amazonian clay finishing powder. Anastasia Bevery Hills Brow Powder Duo.  

BB: Please tell us – can we expect any other new products in the near future?

MI: We just launched No.11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner this month that we are very excited about. I would love for people to experience this along with No.1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum. I come from Japan, which is a big toner culture. Many of us invest in a good toner over a cream. It’s important for us to prep the skin with a toner to hydrate and tone before your anti-aging treatment or moisturizer to seal the moisture into the skin.  There are a couple of products in the works.  At least one of them should be out next year.

BB: Where do you find inspiration for product development?

MI: My inspiration comes from a lot of different sources, such as the mixture of traditional Moroccan herbal remedies and French influence of holistic remedies including aromatherapy I’ve found in Marrakech.  I have also been fascinated by Prickly Pear; we used its seed oil for our No.1 Aknari Brightening Youth Serum and stem extract for No.11 Anarose Rejuvenating Rose Toner.  When I was in Mexico City, I had a green juice that’s made with Prickly Pear cactus pads, and that was the strongest detox juice I’ve ever had – Native Americans used Prickly Pear cactus for medicinal purposes.  I love how this is a very environmentally friendly crop to grow.  It needs very little water.  I like to think about what is environmentally friendly and sustainable as far as ingredients we use for our products. These are just a few of the things that inspire me and get me thinking.

Thank you, Munemi!


Healthy Holiday Recipes from The Whole Tulip


#Goodforyoufriday has been a bad, bad girl.  She ate stuffing and pumpkin pie and all kinds of cheese over Thanksgiving.  It can be difficult to maintain a good, Clean diet during the holidays, especially if you aren’t the one doing the cooking – and if you are, sometimes it just seems easier to revert back to the old, tried-and-true recipes that are loaded with bad stuff.  My friends at The Whole Tulip hear this complaint from their clients every year, so they decided to be rockstars and release multiple holiday menus full of Clean, delicious recipes that they have made for their own families.  They promise that no one at the dinner table will be the wiser.  I thought I would share some with you the next few Fridays while our scales are still displaying the right number.


| Farro with Butternut Squash, Kale and Pomegranates |

  • 1 cup Farro (there are 2 types. Parboiled only needs to cook for 15 minutes. Pearled takes about 45 minutes)
  • 1 shallot, scliced thinly
  • 2 tbs fresh thyme, chopped
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 4 cups butternut squash, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 bunch kale, leaves stripped from rough stems
  • ½ pomegranate seeds
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
  • ½ cup feta or goat cheese (optional)

For the Dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup of olive oil

Cook farro according to package directions. In the last few minutes of cooking, you can put a colander on top of the pot with the kale, replace lid and let the kale steam for a few minutes. Chop kale into thin ribbons, and drain the farro.

Spread walnut on a baking sheet and toast in a 400 degree oven for about 5-7 minutes. When cool enough to handle, chop.

On another baking sheet, spread out the shallots and cubed butternut squash. Drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, sprinkle with the thyme, kosher salt, and pepper, and roast at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes or until the squash is tender. Stir every so often to ensure even cooking.

Make the vinaigrette by whisking together Dijon mustard, 2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar and shallot. Slowly stream in ¼ cup of olive oil and until it makes a thick dressing.

In a large bowl, toss together the farro, greens, and roasted squash and shallot. Drizzle in the balsamic vinaigrette and stir the salad well with a large spoon to ensure even coating.

To serve, crumble some goat cheese or feta cheese on top of the salad, and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.

Recipe courtesy of The Whole Tulip.


RMS Beauty: Charleston Friends & Family




If you are local to Charleston, I hope you can take advantage of RMS Beauty’s Friends & Family event at Novel Showroom!  A professional makeup artist will be on hand for mini-makeovers and the girls from RMS and I will be there to answer questions and help you choose the perfect gift – even if it’s for yourself ;)  All RMS products will be 20% off and there will be plenty of bubbly and other surprises.  Come shop with us!


Gift Guide: Tata Harper Everything at 15% Off!

Hooray!!!  Tata Harper Skincare is having their Friends and Family Sale – 15% off everything with the code FF2014 – now through December 7th!  This is a big deal, as Tata Harper (one of my personal faves) goes on sale about as often as Porsche.  Now is your chance to get yourself the product you’ve been wanting to try or to give a loved one a generous gift they wouldn’t normally buy for themselves.  Naturally (pun intended), I’ve chosen some of my favorites – whether you need an idea for a stocking stuffer or a big-ticket gift, this luxurious Green Beauty brand has got you covered.

Resurfacing Mask: I can’t live without this product.  I’ve blogged about it so many times; you probably want to kill me!  But, seriously, you have to try it and you have to give it.  It’s that good.  Cost: $55.  Purchase it here.

Volumizing Lip and Cheek Tint in Very Vivacious:  This creamy coral butter plumps and moisturizes while giving your lips and cheeks a natural flush.  A perfect little add-on gift.  Cost: $35.  Purchase it here.

Natural Skincare Try-Me Kit: The PERFECT stocking stuffer.  Whether a TH virgin or a TH fanatic, who wouldn’t love to receive this??  Cost: $11.  Purchase it here.

Natural Beauty Globetrotter Essentials: What a great gift for the jet-setter who has everything.  This TSA-approved kit contains Hydrating Floral Essence (hydrating mist) and Replenishing Nutrient Complex (a multi-vitamin serum) to lock in moisture en route and Aromatic Irritability Treatment for those inevitably stressful airport moments.  Cost: $100.  Purchase it here.

Love Potion: This isn’t just perfume; it’s aromatherapy for you and a magnet for the opposite sex – it’s full of aphrodisiac essential oils.  Cost: $40.  Purchase it here.

Aromatic Mood Therapy Collection: Can you tell I’m on an aromatherapy kick?  This little collection is honestly one of the best tools in my kit.  Whether I’m ticked off, stressed or sleepless, I can count on it to calm and soothe my nerves.  And they smell way better than Xanax.  Cost: $175.  Purchase it here.

Although Xanax does have some serious appeal this time of year….


Gift Guide: For the Wellness Junkie



Okay people, I am going the extra mile for you.  I’m not just telling you about The Detox Market’s Black Friday-Cyber Monday Sale, I’m going to give you some unique gift ideas to boot!

  • Clean Eats by New York Times best-selling author, Dr. Alejandro Junger: This book is full of delicious and easy-to-prepare Clean recipes aimed at restoring health from the inside out.  Cost: $29.  Purchase it here.
  • Aiya Matcha Premium Matcha Gift Set: For the Japanophile or the health nut in your life.  Contains 15-20 servings of matcha, whisk, scoop, tea bowl and documentary on DVD.  Cost: $89.  Purchase it here.
  • Lotus Wei Quiet Mind: Help your stressed out loved ones get over all the excessive seriousness, pride, rushing, worry and stomachaches.  Everyone should probably huff this stuff all day long this time of year.  Cost: $45.  Purchase it here.
  • The Kusmi Originals Tea Chest brings together nine different black, green and herbal wellness teas from around the world.  Cost: $56.  Purchase it here.
  • ForLife Tea Mug with Infuser and Lid:  The tea connoisseur in your life will never be without their infuser again.  This mug has one built in and it works for both fine and full-leaf teas.  Cost: $25.  Purchase it here.
  • ForLife Glass Teapot: Form meets function.  This minimalist teapot with built-in infuser is both aesthetically pleasing and easy to use and clean.  Cost: $45.  Purchase it here.
  • Pure Light Luxury Candle in Celebrate: This 100% natural organic coconut wax candle is infused with pure essential oils and natural aromas. The scent of cinnamon, cassia, clove and citrus perfectly capture the inspiration and spicy warmth of the holidays.  Cost: $32.  Purchase it here.

So in case you missed Friday’s post, get $10 off $100 with code: THANKS10.  Get $30 off $200 with code: THANKS30.  Get $60 off $300 + gift w/ purchase with code: THANKS60 when you shop at The Detox Market now through December 3rd.




Black Friday and Cyber Monday


I would rather cook Thanksgiving dinner and do all the dishes every day for a week than physically go power-shopping amongst the masses on Black Friday – it just takes all the fun and glamor out of it for me.  I personally make 90% of my holiday purchases online the weekend following Thanksgiving.  In my pajamas.  Want to shop together?  Here is my round up of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals in the world of Clean Beauty:


Spend $200 at ECODIVA and we will send you a $20 gift card (perfect stocking stuffer!)

Spend $300 at ECODIVA and get a surprise limited edition gift with your purchase (over $50 value).

Spend $500 at ECODIVA and we will send you a $75 gift card to wrap up under the tree.

Almost a heart of gratitudes

While supplies last, get a free Elave Hand Treatment with any $50+ order you place on AYLA BEAUTY.


Today only, for every full-size TATA HARPER purchased, received its travel-size for free!  Plus free shipping on all orders placed on Black Friday.


Jump on THE DETOX MARKET‘s best deal of the year November 25-December 3!  Get $10 off $100 with code: THANKS10.  Get $30 off $200 with code: THANKS30.  Get $60 off $300 + gift w/ purchase with code: THANKS60.


Save 20% on all EMBODY BEAUTY orders of $75 or more when you use the code GRATITUDE at check-out.  Free shipping to the U.S.