Zao Essence of Nature vegan refillable Volume & Sheathing Mascara and Concealer

I came across both of these on the Peace With The Wild website but Zao do have their own website. Both of these products are cruelty free, organic, vegan and refillable!

I’m surprised these are packaged in little bamboo bags as it seems like unnecessary extra packaging. I do love the bamboo cases and that they’re refillable though.

Concealer £18.75

I chose the colour ‘Clear Beige’ as it suits ‘medium skin with neutral undertones’ which my skin is in winter. I cant show you a tester on my skin because it matches it so much that you can’t see it. For a stick concealer the texture is pretty creamy but obviously not as blendable as a liquid one. I’m not one of those people that slap on so much under their eyes, that they cover their cheek bones too (hey, each to their own), I just use it sparingly on blemishes and redness.

Organic castor oil 

This oil is emollient and so facilitates softer skin. It is also moisturising, increasing the water content of skin to keep it soft and smooth.

Organic carnauba wax

Secreted by leaves of a palm tree native to Brazil, this wax is a film-forming agent that protects skin via the production of a continuous film; this helps makeup to last for a longer duration.

Organic bamboo macerate

Bamboo macerate is extremely rich in organic silica, required by the body for the production of collagen, the body’s anti-ageing weapon. Our bodies require silica to maintain elasticity of the upper layers of the epidermis.

Volume and Sheathing Mascara £20.75

100% natural ingredients, 40% of which are organic. This Mascara is so gentle on lashes. The sheathing effect makes lashes thicker but also means that it slides off easily when I want to remove it. It doesn’t make my feel lashes dry or like they could easily snap, as they are still flexible.

This brush is absolutely fool proof! It lifts and separates lashes and applies the perfect amount of product.

Organic bamboo hydrosol
Derived from the distillation of bamboo leaves, it purifies combination and acne-prone skin by mattifying it. Moisturizing and soothing, it is also beneficial for dry and sensitive skin. Thanks to its high silica content, it leaves a soft touch to the skin.

Acacia gum
Acacia gum or gum arabic that comes from the resin secreted by the Acacia Senegal tree, is used as an adhesive agent, to improve the hold of Zao Make-Up mascaras.

Organic avocado oil
Obtained from avocado pulp, this oil is healing and calming. It works like a wonder on skin irritations. Softening, protective and very soft, it restores elasticity and provides comfort to the skin and takes care of fragile skin. Regenerating and restructuring, it acts against skin aging.’

I’ve not included a before pic because you can’t really see my lashes as they point forward without mascara, rather than upward.

I’m surprised at how thick and extended my lashes look, even with my hooded eyes. Below, I’m doing surprised-eyes in order to show you the base of my lashes.

I didn’t even know I had this many lashes lol

Rating for both 5/5 🥳

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Monthly Life Update – January

My memory is so crap for these type of posts, I need to start writing this stuff down everyday.

Lifestyle 💁🏽‍♀️

Check out these eyebrows! I’ve fully grown them out so I can tweeze them back into a coherent shape easily. Ive given this top to charity as I constantly had to lint roller fluff off it. Ain’t no one got time for that!

Carrying on with trying to minimise my impact on the planet, I bought these Sustainable Essentials from Ecologue.

Me pissing around and doing The Dolly Parton Challenge.

After 1 wrong order (and a correction) and 2 stunning deliveries with flower delivery company Bloom and Wild, I ordered Lillies and white roses. The roses died long before the lillies even opened. I’ve learned my lesson and shall be buying from Tesco…or the garage from now on!

Skincare 🧖🏽‍♀️

The most effective deodorant I’ve ever used is Ohii, Charcoal Natural Deodorant (which I like to think is pronounced ‘Oh, eye?’). It’s vegan, yay! But not refillable, boo!

Glycolic Acid is my friend once again in – the incredibly effective – Pixi, Glow Tonic. Cleanses, brightens and smooths without being too drying.

Stressing Less 💆🏻‍♀️

I’ve noticed that if I don’t pressure myself to go to bed and wake up at a reasonable time, I sleep much better. I go to bed around 1.00am when I’m actually tired enough to sleep and anytime I’ve had enough sleep is when I get up. That’s reasonable for me.

I’m also stressing less about what is supposed to be happening when and tend to just be content with what is happening now. Not caring about being in control of everything and just letting stuff play out is a lot less stressful!

Wearing 👚

I tried to get some style basics in the sales and had mixed success but I like these posts because they give you an idea of various brands sizing and quality etc.

Eating 🥗

Having three meals a day and eating a small breakfast before my body desperately needs fuel, so I have a clear head and the energy to put together something nicer later on.

I’ve gotten back into salad/deli type foods like humus, pickles, roasted peppers and tomatoes, crackers, seeds, nuts, stuffed vine leaves, chilled tofu (fried in toasted sesame oil and then chilled makes it taste like chicken breast for some reason) and so many condiments. There’s half a shelf full of them in the fridge lol BUT I’ve discovered my fave noodle place has stopped doing sushi! 😱

Greggs have launched their Vegan Stakebake and Vegan Sausageroll, so although I’m cheating with the gluten in the pastry, I still HAD to try them. Sadly I ran out of change and could only afford the stakebake, which was Delicious!

Reading 📖

I couldn’t get my head into reading books over Jan so I’ve been reading blogs including Roses Have Thoughts , Square One Notes , Mae Polzine and Cosmopolitan, Red, and Vogue, which was in a two-for-one deal surprisingly. I’ve read some great interviews, features, tips and reviews.

Watching 👀

Better than Human (with English subs) – this was similar to, but better than the Humans. Not as preachy and waster pacing and more relatable characters I thought.

Black Mirror series 2 – I really enjoyed this because it wasn’t as heavy as the first but still very poignant.

Black Lightning – Pop corn for the mind, with extra cheese. The quality of the fight scenes, the character arcs, the editing and the pacing of the story were all wildly uneven. The characters were likeable and the soundtrack consistently good though.

Santa Clarita Diet – featuring Drew Barrymore as a zombie and a wife and Mum. Once you get passed the clunky acting and awkwardly timed jokes in the first series and it just gets better and better. Brilliantly bizarre!

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Sustainable Essentials from Ecologue

I’ve discovered an affordable UK eco shop online called Ecologue. They sell what’s pictured bellow as well as bamboo cotton buds, tote bags and metal straws.

Stainless Steel Bottle

I’ve had two water bottles recently, a plastic one which smelled funky after two months and a huge metal flask which can be too heavy when full. I was so pleased to find this metallic blue flask (how gorgeous is that colour) with matte ‘grippy’ paint and easy-to-open lid. Stainless Steel Bottles £10 for both 500ml or 750ml which keep things hot or cold for hours!

Bamboo Makeup Pads

I use cotton pads everyday either morning or evening for my cleanser and/ or micellar water, it was one of the few wasteful things I still did. These Makeup Remover Pads £14.99 for 16 pads are made of 70% cotton and 30% bamboo and can be thrown into the washing machine inside their net bag. I don’t use long wear foundation, water proof mascara or seven layers of under-eye concealer and then powder. If I did, I’m not sure how white these would stay!? But they are perfect for me!

Bamboo Handle Toothbrush

This is from a family pack of 4 Bamboo toothbrushes for £8. The bristles are soft but dense which I prefer to the modern plastic ones and the round handle is still fairly easy to grip.

For eco reasons of generating less waste and packaging (even though it’s all cardboard) I ordered the pack of toothbrushes and the biggest pack of pads. The bottles sell out quickly (because they are awesome obv) so if you have your eye in one you better grab it quick!

🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

Ohii Pure Stick Deodorant in Citrus Tea

I started using natural deodorant ten years ago as I couldn’t find any others that were cruelty free at the time. The salt based ones didn’t really work but the solid cream ones worked really well, even in summer. I thought I’d try this charcoal-based one by Ohii in Citrus Tea £10 from Urban Outfitters to deodorise and care for my skin even more. It also has a lovely fresh unisex scent.

  • Cruelty free
  • Vegan
  • Aluminium free
  • Baking soda free
  • Doesn’t leave white marks/dries clear
  • Soothing Aloe

The Ultimate Test and Result

I was having food intolerance related hot flushes all day and night and by 7.00pm I have to admit I was smelling a tad ripe!

However…

The bloke wore this and cycled 6 and a half miles, spent the day in a meeting and cycled the same home and smelled fresh as a daisy!

  • Rating 4/5

  • I would have given it five out of five if it was packaged in glass, rather than plastic (two lids on top of one another as well) or if it was refillable. I also found the labelling extremely hard to make sense of, to the point where I missed the brand name completely!

    🖤✨Chrissie✨🖤

    My Cruelty Free Beauty Awards 2019!

    Best Liquid Highlighter – The Body Shop Drops of Glow

    This pearlised one is a little too light for me so I should have gotten the more golden option. Still a great product though!

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    Runner up Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Filter. Shite as BB cream or sheer foundation but amazing as a highlighter.

    Best Hair Dye – Manic Panic (Pretty Flamingo)

    The choice of colours are amazing, the consistency is nice and thick so easy to apply and it’s really conditioning. It can last up to six months if you gently wash your hair every 7 – 14 days or it can be nearly washed out after around 5 washes with stronger shampoo.

    Runner up – Nature Tint. Lasts forever but too runny and messy to apply easily.

    Best Lipstick/Gloss/Balm – The Body Shop, Colour Crush Lipstick (Luanda Peony)

    This glides on easily, has a very subtle and flattering shimmer, huge colour payoff and it moisturises!

    Runner up – Charlotte Tilbury Lip Plumping Gloss. Works almost too well!

    Best Hair and Body Care Brand – Yaoh! (Coconut and Lime)

    Affordable, natural (everything is based around hemp seed oil), it smells heavenly and every product delivers results.

    Runner up – Neal’s Yard Remedies. Natural and pampering but too pricey for me.

    Best Nail Polish/Care Brand – Ciate (Nail Super Hero)

    Affordable, an astounding range of colours, textures and finishes, and nail treatments which actually work.

    Runner up – Barry M for very similar reasons.

    Best Facial Skincare – The Body Shop (Vitamin C)

    This Range is strongly scented of oranges, which I find really refreshing. It’s affordable as a little goes a long way and leaves skin clean, smooth and moisturised immediately and clearer and glowier after around five days.

    Runner up – Murad (Age Reform). Incredibly effective and a similar price bracket to TBS these days so this was a tough decision!

    Best Everyday Facial Oil – Superdrug own brand

    I would describe this as a dry oil as it’s non-greasy and works perfectly under primer and foundation (or at least the one’s I use), or on it’s own for a naturally healthy appearance on any skin type.

    Runner up – Weleda. Their facial oils are rich and really nourishing. They all have a very strong (natural) scent and take a while to sink in so best for an overnight treatment.

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    I’ve covered all of the products and the brands that I have used in 2019. So if there is a category or product missing it’s because I didn’t need or use a new a one of those. Above are some products which I loved but didn’t quite make the ‘best of’.

    Have you tried any of these?

    🏅Chrissie🏅

     

    Yaoh! Mini Haul

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    I use Yaoh! because their products are hemp oil based, which really conditions my skin and my hair, they are BUAV (leaping bunny) approved, they don’t use palm oil and are affordable on a budget; the perfect brand in my opinion!

    The Coconut and Lime scent of the Shampoo is as wonderful as the shampoo it’s self. It leaves my coarse, frizzy hair so soft and shiny it totally transforms the texture. I don’t need to add hair oil afterward either, just curl cream. I’ve bought the body butter to match and I’m going to get the shower gel too next time.

    The Mango Lip Balm is hydrating and adds important oils, while smelling like a Mediterranean cocktail. It’s nice and thick but it does sink in, unlike other brands that are too heavily wax based.

    I decided to try a Tropical Fruits Body Butter (not shown) as the scent sounded lovely and exotic. The body butters feel light on the skin and sinks in easily but it’s still incredibly hydrating. The scent isn’t as strong as I’d prefer but it is pleasant.

    The Tropical Fruits Moisturiser barley has any scent, which I prefer. It sinks in quickly but I think this would be best for dry or possibly combination skin as it is rather rich. Considering it’s slightly scented and rich, it doesn’t

    Because I’d bought 4 items amounting to £25 I got the face moisturiser free!

    Rating 5/5 for everything!

    Chrissie

    The Basic Skincare Regimen That’s Made a Huge Difference

    The reason for my delicate snowflake skin

    As a (sometimes) beauty blogger I used throw an awful lot of different brands and products at my skin; no wonder it was so confused! It would go from too oily to really dry within hours and sometimes it would be oily but dehydrated at the same time. I was also eating a lot of dairy (the reason for so many spots) and gluten (the reason for redness, water retention and inflammation). Nowadays I eat a mainly free-from diet with just one cheat day a week and stick to these gentle skincare items.

    My skins needs

    My face doesn’t seem to shed old skin cells very well, resulting in dullness, blocked pores and poor absorption of products so a frequent radiance peel is so helpful! Although I don’t have sensitive skin, it does still get red easily because of allergies or sudden temperature changes so products that are calming and balancing are also a must. I feel there’s room to fit in a pampering sheet mask as recommended by the awesome Hunida over at Hunida’s Blog or a pink clay mask to reduce my pores, once a week.

    The wonder products!

    B. Miceller Water to cleanse twice a day. The least drying and most effective cleanser/toner I’ve tried.

    Murad Intensive Radiance Peel, twice a week. Gentle enough for my skin with natural acids.

    Nip+Fab Hyaluronic acid everyday. Helps skin to absorb moisture from the atmosphere and my moisturiser.

    Weleda Pomegranate Body Lotion, everyday. The naturally occurring Vit C in this calms redness and inflammation. It’s also so light but hydrating my face loves this as well as my body.

    Weleda Pomegranate Body oil, everyday. This has totally rescued my pout from cracking in drying central heating. Vit C also helps to regulate sebum production.

    What are your everyday must haves?

    Chrissie

    The Body Shop Fresh Nude Foundation V’s e.l.f Beautifully Bare Foundation

    The Body Shop Fresh Nude Foundation (£16/30 ml)

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    Pro’s

    Medium build-able coverage and covers redness

    Goes on easily with brush or beauty blender

    Very long wearing

    Very lightweight/natural feel

    Non drying

    Non greasy

    Available in realistic skin tones

    Easy pump action, let’s you choose the exact amount you use

    Easily recycled glass bottle

    Reasonably priced

    SPF 15

    Exact colour match as small colour sample on the website

    Contains English Rose Water and Aloe Vera

    Con’s

    Way too matte. Doesn’t give a ‘fresh’ or ‘natural’ finish.

    e.l.f Beautifully Bare Foundation (£9/14ml)

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    Medium build-able coverage and covers redness

    Goes on easily with brush or beauty blender

    Very long wearing

    Very lightweight/natural feel

    Non drying

    Non greasy

    Available in realistic skin tones

    Easy pump action, let’s you choose the exact amount you use

    Easily recycled glass bottle

    Very reasonably priced

    SPF 25

    Exact colour match as small colour sample on the website

    Contains Vitamin A, C, & E, Grape Seed Oil, Pomegranate Oil, and Goji Berry

    Con’s 

    Almost too matte. Sadly, it doesn’t make skin look ‘radiant or dewy’.

    The winner

    e.l.f Beautifully Bare Foundation

    It has ten more SPF than The Body Shop Fresh Nude foundation; works out slightly cheaper and contains more active ingredients for healthy skin. It changes over three hours of wear to look a little less matte, which I’m very glad about.

     

     

     

     

     

    6 Simple Beauty Tips Which Make a Big Difference

     

    Facetune

    How to stop eyelashes clumping or looking spiky

    If you have medium-to long eyelashes that are fairly straight, don’t use a mascara with added fibres or a thick formula. Curl and separate your lashes, then use a mascara which glides on easily and brush straight up (no wiggling from side-to-side). Apply no more than three coats and let them dry in between.

    How to keep track of the makeup & skincare you own

    So most skincare and makeup will have a little picture of a jar with a number on saying how many months your product will last for once opened but who can remember when they actually opened it? I write it on a little piece of paper and stick it on the jar with clear tape. I store everything in a wide, open basket with 3 smaller basket inserts to separate everyday skincare from pampering skincare and replacements (which I’ve stocked up on before the first product runs) so I can see everything I have with one glance.

    For makeup I have an everyday-makeup pouch and a huge vinyl makeup bag, divided into sections which I store my going-out-makeup in. Again it’s easy to see what I have so I don’t keep buying the same stuff by mistake every few months! I store my makeup brushes in a sparkly pencil case because I’m allergic to dust so I can’t have them sitting about in the open, even though they are pretty pastel unicorn ones.

    The order you should use your everyday skincare in

    Get the most out of your products by knowing which order to apply them in so they compliment, rather than block each other.

    Exfoliate: My skin is not great at goodbyes and likes to cling onto old skin, rather than letting it invisibly float off over the day like it should. To give it some help I use a gentle Glycolic Acid to weaken the bonds between dead skin and new skin. I have a weaker treatment that I can leave on and a stronger one which I leave on for ten minutes and then gently wipe off with a face cloth and then rinse my face. I found that no matter how many face scrubs I tried with the gentlest, tiniest granules my face would become bright red and my skin still didn’t feel smooth.

    Serum then Moisturiser: Now skin is able to absorb the lovely things you are giving it. I use Hyloronic acid (which sucks in moisture like a sponge), swiftly followed by a light moisturiser. If you just use hyloronic acid on it’s own in a dry attmosphere, without using moisturiser after, there is a chance it can pull moisture from the deeper layers of your skin up to the suffice. You want to keep that moisture where it is and help it absorb MORE moisture.

    Facial Oil: Sometimes there is a difference between dehydrated and dry. I can apply moisturiser and sometimes my skin sucks it up immediately or sometimes it just sits there but either-way, my skin still feels a little dry and looks dull, like matte paper. This is when I realise it needs oil. Another clue is when you’ve moisturised but your skin gets oily in the afternoon or evening. It new it was dry and wildly over compensated – oops! I tend to apply a light layer of oil all over my face – even around my T-zone (sounds crazy but give it a go) and on my collar bone – because that just looks nice!

    Layering makeup and textures to get the best look for your skin

    I’ve found you can have too much of a good thing – such as similar textures – and prefer to strike a balance by using a mattifying moisturiser with a lightweight foundation or a lightweight moisturiser and then a mattyfying foundation. Applying all mattes and powders or all liquids and shine can look OTT, in both directions so to avoid this, I love liquid highlighters and cream blush with matte foundation. Alternatively, a powder highlighter and blush when I’m using a very light BB cream or foundation to help it stay put. I’ve tried the Korean ‘glass’ skincare look and it did look amazing…For around 60 minutes before the makeup slid off and the shine – so much shine – stayed with a vengeance. I really do think that layering combinations of textures can give the most realistic, long wearing and flattering look.

    Get ideas from makeup tutorials but never ignore your own eye/lip/face shape.

    If I follow the usual Western eye shadow looks, all my eye makeup disappears into the folds of my eyes and I have giant highlighted brow bones. If I use ones for hooded eyes, then my eyes look rounder and you can see the eyeshadow but it doesn’t look like me and I think it’s actually playing down one of my best features! Now I follow normal smokey eye tutorials but I just extend the makeup up AND out, making sure to highlight where my inner corners curve inward to compliment the natural cat like shape.

    If I applied blusher all over the apples of my cheeks I would look like a scary doll, no matter how subtly I applied it. I tend not to bring it inward too much and sweep it up and outward instead.

    If I applied contour directly under my crazily-high cheek bones it would make the rest of my face beneath look way too long. I tend to lower it ever-so-slightly and then blend it out the lower down it gets.

    Essentially, get all of the tips and ideas you want from others but do what works for YOUR face, after all, you know it best.

    Give your skin the chance to do stuff for it’s self

    I’m sure everyone has been in that vicious circle of using products that are too harsh and strip your skin – then your skin produces oil to try and balance i’s self – so you use tonner or cleanser and it dries out for a while and then the oil starts again. You should aim for balancing your skin, correcting it (gently) only if it really needs it. If you keep throwing all of these products at your face how will it know when it needs to act and how to regulate it’s self? It’s best to try and stick to a routine (ironically difficult for a beauty blogger who reviews everything) and every six months just to let it be for several days so it acts naturally and then possibly reassess what it needs.

    Perfect example: My lips have always lacked natural oils and look dry and even cracked on a regular basis. Turns out it’s a reaction to allergies and central heating. As a kid I was slicked in thick lip balm; as a teen in kiwi lip balm from The Body Shop; in my twenties in Lancome Juicy Tubes lip gloss; in my thirties I’m using natural oils such as Almond and Hemp. The problem steadily got worse and worse however, until my bloke said “Stop using lip stuff so much. Try to anticipate when they might need it so you apply it before they are dry, otherwise let your skin sort it’s self out.” That was so difficult for a lip product obsessive like me. So I accepted looking like the walking dead and after five days it actually worked! My lips where naturally smoother and looked plump and hydrated.

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    I’d love to hear your thoughts and any tips you’ve discovered yourself!

    Chrissie

    Weleda ‘Nature’s Collection’ A Beauty Calendar with a Difference

    I wanted an advent calendar that was beauty (rather than chocolate) based and wanted natural skincare items that I would make my skin and wellbeing that little bit better everyday. With that in mind, the first brand that I thought of was Weleda and luckily they had produced one but one that was a little different!

    Nature’s Collection calendar £34.95 consists of 12 doors, each containing a different product but you start it on Christmas day. It’s designed to brighten the dullest mornings and complexions through to the 5th of January.

    I’ve always found that part of the year to be a tad odd and I can’t tell you how many New Years I’ve started with either a hangover, a tad of uncertainty or both so I thought this was a lovely idea.

    About the designer

    ‘Throughout the year, Emma Britton, decorative glass designer, has captured the essence of ‘The Field’, our Weleda Garden in Derbyshire, and the place where it all starts – the journey from seed to skin. As a pattern designer Emma sees things in everyday life others might miss and she is inspired by floral beauty in both countryside and garden.’

    **SPOILER ALERT**

    I opened three doors ahead of time for the purpose of this review and because I was feeling pretty bit low the first few days of it going dark by 3.00pm!

    If you are buying this as a Christmas present for a lucky someone, you can see the full list of products in the description on the Weleda website.

    Chrissie