We don’t often think about where our products come from, how they got to where they are and what processes they have undergone.
We see the lipstick, the mascara, the cream. The end result basically. And tend not to take any heed, of what has gone on before.
In an age of ever growing self awareness and responsibility, where the voice of the people becomes louder for change, we start to notice those who stand up and speak up. Those who rally and protest against testing on animals, using fur at fashion week, these people stand out to us, they have a cause. They have a purpose.
Being mindful, regular readers will know, is something I have been trying to adopt into my lifestyle. Being mindful in all aspects of life, work, home, health. A nice balance of being. But I’d like to take that one step further, push the boundaries if you will and open this up to mindful and conscious shopping. What?! I hear you say, well, mindful / conscious shopping is where we actively make a decision to shop in a more conscious and mindful way. Be that locally, organically, or cruelty free. Buying organic and vegan produce and trying to minimise our impact on the environment where we can. It also makes for lots of feel good purchases.
I will be honest, when I’m out looking for a new product, checking whether it is vegan has not been on the top of my priority list. I’m looking for results, key ingredients, nice packaging. But actually, not necessarily taking into account what journey this product has undergone to get here. The problem with this, is that we sort of glide on by unawares, with our blinkers on, having that “what I don’t know won’t hurt me” kind of attitude. But is it then, our responsibility to educate, and lead by example? Buying and trying organic and vegan products that have not been tested on animals as the norm, leaving the others to perish on the shelf?
With this in mind, I have rounded up some of my favourite Vegan Beauty & Skincare products, that have undergone some rigorous testing in the last month, none of which have been tested on animals. Just me.
UrbanVedaFace Wash £11.99 & Exfoliating Polish £12.99 now stocked at Boots.
This range by Urban Veda is a great everyday staple. I was intrigued by the Ayurveda range by Urban Veda as Ayurveda is something I have been personally interested in, in the last few years. Educating myself on this way of life and being and trying to adopt as much of its teachings as possible. It made sense to adapt these rituals into my morning routine. The face wash was the one I was most surprised with, it’s a foaming cleanser, but one that does not leave the skin feeling tight and squeaky clean. But instead, leaves the skin feeling soft and clean. The exfoliator is not too abrasive, I found it did not irritate my skin and it did leave it feeling fresh and revitalised, carefully removing the dead skin cells as I washed off with a muslin cloth.
Ermana Skincare – Renew Face Oil £25
Ermana Skincare is a new one on the block for me, an organic and vegan brand who care about what you put on your body, using the very best that Mother Nature has to offer.
The brand was initially founded from a love of aromatherapy and respite from a hectic working life. This is something I think we all can resonate with. Ermana sources their ingredients and packaging from UK suppliers, making this a great British brand to get behind.
The Renew Face Oil with neroli and ylang ylang essential oils, help to tone the skin and relieve any irritation. This has been an absolute life saver for me, since this bitter cold snap we seem to be having. The Renew oil is also marvellous at restoring hydration, and works to improve cell regeneration and boost collagen levels with Vitamin E.
The texture is soft and silky, it feels very luxurious. I add a few drops to the palms of my hands, warm the oil between my hands, before placing the hands on top of the face, almost patting it with the oil, not rubbing.
I find this to be a really nice starter to my morning routine, and because my skin has felt more hydrated, I find, my make up lasts much longer throughout the day. I definitely feel like my skin has improved since using the Renew Facial Oil. I’m really intrigued to try more from the range, especially since so much care, thought and research goes into each individual product.
Atlantis Skincare Glowing Skin Day Cream £64.99 & Eye Cream with Hyaluronic Acid £34.99
Another new brand on the block for me, Atlantis Skincare. One of the things that interested me about their product range, was that Hyaluronic Acid features across the range in almost all products. Such care and research has gone into the range. Made in small batches, using cold pressed oils, the finest ingredients and healing properties from plants, promoting a healthy glow.
The Atlantis Skincare Eye Cream, beautifully packaged in its blue bottle, dispenses rather easily through a pump action. Only a teeny tiny small amount is required. Using your ring finger, gently pat the product around the eye area and brow bone gently. The eye cream soothes and deeply nourishes the delicate eye area, helping tackle signs of tired, puffy eyes.
The Glowing Skin Day Cream does exactly as is it says on the tin, and your skin really does glow. Using the very best ingredients that Mother Nature has to offer, including natural seed oils and exotic butters which help to protect and regenerate the skin. The ingredients are quite potent, so I would advise using a small amount of the cream, as a little goes a long way. Using the same patting technique as the eye cream, put the cream in the palms of your hands and then place your hands over your face. This allows the cream to sink in without rubbing or pulling the skin. I really noticed how nourished and fresh my skin looks from using this duo from Atlantic Skincare.
The Hero Project – Resurfizz Mask £49 & Night Drops £45
Now you know I love a good mask, and even better if there is a product that works it’s magic while I sleep. When Hero Project landed on my desk, the words Resurfizz and Night Drops were music to my ears. Another champion organic and vegan skincare brand who burst onto the scene in recent years. Their philosophy is bloody marvellous, they are the forward thinking beauty brand you need to know about. With consumers at the forefront and a mission to make every product in their range a hero product, this is a brand worth looking into.
The Resurfizz mask comes in two parts, I love it when there are steps involved. The first being the Thermal Melt. You glide this product onto clean skin, leave on the skin for a few minutes, until the skin has warmed and the pores have opened. Once you can feel the thermal melt warming on the skin, (after a few minutes) it is time to wash this step off with a muslin cloth, preparing the skin for the next step.
It is now time to apply the Enzyme Fizz. There is actually quite a lot of product in each pot, but I decided to slather the lot on my face and neck as directed. You begin to feel a slight tingling sensation as the enzyme fizz gets to work on your skin, from there, the mask starts to fizz, quite literally on your face. You then start to produce a layer of fizzed up tiny bubbles all over the applied areas. It’s rather funny, and the sensation your skin feels is something else. This process takes about 5-7 minutes to take full effect. This has become my favourite Friday night treat at the moment. A great one for sitting in front of TV, just be sure not to answer the door until the Mask has washed off.
My skin is so bright and healthy looking with a youthful glow. I would highly recommend this mask, it might even be a great one for upcoming Mother’s Day.
The Night Drops by The Hero Project are one of those life changing products you think, how did I ever get on without this product before. Products that get to work while you sleep are fastly becoming my new favourite stage in my beauty regime. These products work wonders while you hit the hay, it’s like waking up with a new face! The Hero Project Night Drops contain one of my all time favourite ingredients. Niacinamide.
What is Niacinimide I hear you ask? Well, it’s basically a water soluble vitamin – sometimes known as B3 – which works with the skins natural substances, to help visibly improve a multitude of skin problems. Including; enlarged pores, uneven skin tone and dullness to improving fine lines and wrinkles. It’s a great all rounder. It also helps with the skins natural defence barrier in keeping your skin healthy. And what is even better, it does all of this while you sleep. HUGE fan. And I really love the packaging, it looks great sitting out on my bedside table.
BRYT SkincareNight Cream £19.50
You may remember me mention BRYT Skincare in a Christmas Gift Guide a few years ago. A brand firmly on my radar with excellent products and very potent, hardworking ingredients. I really enjoy products that work wonders while you sleep as mentioned above , and this Night Cream is a great addition into my evening skincare routine. The cream itself is so soft and velvety, it sinks deep into the skin, and feels really nourishing and moisturising. The ingredients include, essential oils; Rose Absolute, Chinese Geranium, Palma Rose and Lavender. Including BRYT Skincare’s unique APS formulation which is rich in super-antioxidants, Vitamin E, Shea Butter and African Marula Oil, cherished for its remarkable moisturising and healing properties.
What first caught my eye, aside from their delightful brand name, Miss Patisserie, which makes me think of a bakery, was their chunky but striking minimal packaging. Big jars with dreamy colours inside. On closer inspection, you discover that Miss Patisserie is a vegan brand on a mission to transform your washing experience. From bath bombs, to creams and of course my personal favourite, their sugar scrubs.
Value for money is poignant here, the jar is a good size and to the think it is completely vegan and organic for only £13, it is worth checking out next time you need to restock your bathroom essentials.
Coconut and Lotus flower were the two scents I tried. You simply scoop up some of the scrub and work in circular motions around the body, removing dead skin cells. The scrub leaves an oily layer on the skin for maximum moisturising. The scent is really nice, in fact, I quite like mixing the combination of both Lotus Flower and Coconut , it leaves the skin feeling super soft. Not to mention smelling amazing. They have more fragrances too, and their bath bombs looks fantastic!
SoEco Make Up Brushes £12.41 available at Amazon
These lovely brushed by SoEco are not only eco friendly but the brand itself has a huge emphasis on being 100% responsibly and ethically sourced. In all aspects of its manufacture.
This handy little pouch comes with a selection of essential brushes to keep your face looking preened and groomed. This one focuses on the eyes, but they do have a full range of brushes to suit all needs.
Including, brow brush & comb, liner brush, two eye shadow brushes and a defining brush. Pretty much all you need to create a day or evening look for the eyes. The handy case makes it easy to transport around, and I love the bamboo brush handles, very sustainable indeed. I have been completely converted by SoEco and I particularly like the fact the brand has such strong sustainable and ethical roots.
NEEK Organic Lipstick £15.99 in Pash & Sweet About Me
I initially was drawn to the name of this brand, NEEK, because my niece is called Monique and we often call her Neek for short. Naturally we were onto a winner from the get go, if only for novelty value. When NEEK Organic Lipsticks arrived, I was particularly impressed with the packaging – you may notice a theme, I love a nicely designed piece of packaging – with a wooden outer layer, it really does give off an organic and vegan vibe.
Both of the shades I choose, Pash and Sweet About Me, are modern takes on the classic nude lip. I do love a striking lip, but there are those days you want to look preened and put together, without having a loud shade on the lips. Sometimes, underrated is what is called for. And so, Pash & Sweet About Me, have become daily favourites.
Pash, is the mauve shade of the two. Adding a slight tonal change to the classic nude without having too much lilac in it. If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen both of these shades in action regularly. They are effortless, barely there. But subtle enough to pack enough of a punch that completes your make up look.
Sweet About Me is the perfect lip tone, with the added touch of a little shimmer. It’s great for adding a bit of a sheen, without being glossy on your lips. The formulations are creamy and soft, and they glide effortlessly only the lips. Perfect handbag staples, and with lots more shades to choose from, you are bound to find a favourite.
Something for the men in your life ….
I was pleasantly surprised to find that BRYT Skincare also do a range of men’s skincare! Mr LL was ever so pleased, he often steals my products to use himself, so it was nice to get his feedback on some male oriented products rather than my expensive facecreams!
The BRYT Skincare Hair & Body Wash has the most energising minty scent. Mr LL says it is a great one for using in the shower in the morning. Very refreshing and revitalising on the skin. The product lathers gently, and leaves the skin feeling soft and clean. It works well as a shampoo, you find it doesn’t foam up quite the same as a regular shampoo, but the results are still great, leaving hair looking clean and shiny. It has gone down well in this household.
The Foaming Cleanser, I must admit I have been using it a little myself. It’s incredibly good, and I don’t normally like foaming cleansers, as I mentioned earlier, due to how tight they leave the skin afterwards. This one however, does not leave the skin feeling tight. Your skin is left super soft and really clean feeling.
Key ingredients include Natural Apple, Aloe & Olive Oil extracts as well as Bergamot, Lemon and Spicy Clove Essential Oils. My skin instantly looked fresh and it has been a big hit with Mr LL too. He uses the cleanser in the shower and seems rather chuffed with its performance. I’ll be restocking this from now on.
The BRYT Boost Serum is jam packed full of essential oils and is a great one for tired and dehydrated skin. The BRYT Boost serum is not limited to just men, it is great for women too. The texture is quite silky, it has a thicker consistency than an oil, one or two pumps ought to do it.
You would apply it at night ideally, as the product would have more time to sink into the skin and give it that drink it so desperately needs. Simply warm the serum between the palms of your hand and press onto the skin. You will notice such a difference in the appearance of your skin the next morning. A saviour at this time of year.
The above gives you some suggestions to get started with, explore this idea of mindful shopping and choose vegan and organic products whenever you can. I think with something like this, change starts at home,’it starts with us first. And through time, hopefully there is global change.
I’m off to slather some Resurfizz over my face, good old Hero Project to the rescue.
What are your favourite Vegan beauty and skincare brands?
This is not a sponsored post.
Pr samples have been included.
All views and opinions are my own.