All Posts By

Carron Coleman

Apple Rose Beauty Skincare Review

Skincare

Okay this post is embarrassingly overdue. I met the lovely owner of Apple Rose Beauty at the Indie Beauty Expo last year. We connected frequently since then and she was gracious enough to send me full size bottles of her skincare line to try. What I received was the facial cleanser, moisturizer, and vitamin C serum. Apple Rose Beauty provides natural and organic spa quality skincare. My skin is oily and sensitive and prone to breakouts. So you can imagine how hard it is to find quality skincare that works for me without causing side effects. As with any new skincare products I always say test it out for at least 3 weeks before making a determination. I’ve had these products for over a month and here’s my review:

 

Naturally Nourish Cleanser: This is a gentle and effective facial cleanser made with organic ingredients. A little goes a very long way. I noticed that I only needed a small dime size amount in order to get a good lather. It works well with your hands or any scrub brush you may have. What I love most is that it helps to fight acne but doesn’t dry my skin out. It’s got that perfect balance of acne fighting ingredients and moisturizing properties. Most cleansers marketed for acne prone skin tend to be very drying.

 

Ingredients: Organic Lavender Distillate, Organic Aloe Leaf, Coconut Oil, Organic Sunflower, Organic Castor Seed, Witch Hazel, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Guar Gum, Organic Salix Willow Bark, Vitamin E, Carageenan, Vitamin C, Clove Essential Oil, Organic Juniper, Organic Cayenne, Vitamin B5, Rosemary Seed Extract.

 

Nourish Naturally Moisturizing Treatment: This is a highly concentrated treatment for the skin. The consistency is kind of thick which did alarm me a bit because for my oily skin I usually shy away from heavy creams. Just like the cleanser a little goes a long way. I definitely didn’t need much. I should note that I don’t use it every night just every other. This didn’t leave my face looking like a grease ball in the morning. The best part is that it contains licorice extract and turmeric which is great for fading dark spots.

Ingredients: Water, Organic Jojoba Oil, Carbomer, Arginine (Natural Amino Acid), Organic Lavender, Wildcrafted Comfrey, Organic Echinacea, Organic Gotu Kola, Organic Sage, Organic Thyme, Organic Goldenseal, Wildcrafted Propolis, Organic Oat, Organic Turmeric, Organic Licorice, Sandalwood Essential Oil, Melissa Essential Oil, Geranium Essential Oil, Ethylhexyl Glycerin (natural preservative), Phenoxyethanol (nature identical preservative), Aloe Vera Extract, Organic Gotu Kola Extract, Organic Horsetail Plant Extract, Organic Geranium Extract, Organic Dandelion Extract.

 

Bloom Beautifully 20% Vitamin C serum: I must admit I’m a little late to the serum party. I know you’re supposed to start using them in your early 20’s before you actually need it. But hey it’s never too late. This vitamin C serum also contains hyaluronic acid and collagen boosting properties. It tackles and prevents many problems into one. It works to repair sun damage and brightens complexion. Vitamin C serums normally take time to notice their effects but after using this for a few months my skin feels smoother to the touch. I use it on my face, neck, and chest nightly.

 

Ingredients: Water, Organic Aloe Leaf, Organic Vitamin C, Organic Sulfur, Plant Based Hyaluronic Acid, Witch Hazel, Vitamin E, Carbomer, Arginine (Natural Amino Acid), Vitamin E Acid, Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Organic Jojoba Oil, Phenoxyethanol (nature identical preservative), Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin (natural preservative), Organic Gotu Kola Extract, Organic Horsetail Plant Extract, Organic Geranium Extract, Organic Dandelion Extract.

How to Detox Naturally

Fitness, Health, Info & Tips, Lifestyle

I hope your new year is off to a great start!

Now that the holidays are over it’s time to transition back into regular life. I don’t know about you but I do indulge a bit during the holidays. You know how it goes; baked mac n cheese, spiked egg nog, sweet potato pie, or whatever your family likes to throw down.

Just to help me reset on focus I like to start the new year on a detox. Going on a detox helps you to recover from the holidays, remove toxins from the body, and get focused for the new year.

So here are a few tips on how to detox naturally.

 

My first tip is to stay away from processed foods. During the holidays we eat a lot of sweet treats and deserts. So cutting out all sugars and processed foods and sticking to a plant based diet is ideal during a detox. Make sure you eat plenty of fresh organic fruits and veggies.

It is important that you stay hydrated during your detox. This helps flush out toxins from the body. During the holidays you’re running around buying gifts, traveling, spending time with the fam so it’s harder to make sure you drink enough water. While I’m detoxing I make sure I increase my water intake. Drinking infused water is a great way stay hydrated and also add flavor to your water. You can add your favorite herbs and fruits to really make the water taste delicious. You can get a water infuser like this here.

For me a detox is not only about my physical health but also my mental and spiritual well-being. At the beginning of the year I like to pray and get closer to God. It really helps me to set the tone for the new year. I love collecting journals so I’ll write down any goals I want to accomplish in the new year. I also like to read inspirational books or devotionals.

Overall during your detox you want relax as much as possible. Work on being a better you from the inside out. I hope you found this information helpful. If you have any detoxing tips you want to share leave them in the comments below.

 

Best Natural Foundation for Women of Color

Beauty, Make-Up

Finding the perfect shade match can be a challenge especially if you are a woman with a darker skin tone. The beauty industry as a whole doesn’t always oblige to darker hues. Most cosmetic companies barely have any shades to match darker complexions. After going green with my beauty routine I notice that it was even harder to find a natural cosmetic brand that actually carried a foundation shade that suited me. I recently received a request on Instagram for a list of cosmetic brands that are women of color friendly. So here’s a list of green beauty brands that are the best for women of color:

 

Plain Jane Beauty: Not to sound bias but this brand is hands down one of my favorites when it comes to foundations. Lake Louise founded this company on the premise of creating a natural cosmetics brands that can match any complexion from olive to deep mahogany.

 

Alima Pure: Specialize in all natural mineral makeup. The color range is like no other. Their website has a great color matching tool and sample kit that includes 10 samples of their satin matte foundation. Their foundations are vegan and gluten free.

 

Modern Minerals: Strives to formulate makeup with the most natural ingredients possible. The founder Diane wanted to create a line of cosmetics that inspire conscious beauty, positivity, and presence. All of their makeup is vegan and cruelty free. You can also purchase small travel size foundations for only $2.

 

BLAC Minerals: Cosmetics brand that produces all natural makeup for women of color. Founded by a black woman, Merced Saint Boyce wanted to create natural makeup that is powered by healthy-skin loving ingredients. Their shade options are amazingly in depth, from light to deep dark. You can also purchase sample sizes.

 

Law of Nature Cosmetics: Organic makeup that is all natural and gluten free formulated for women of color. They carry creme foundation and mineral powder. 91% organic with no parabens, talc, mineral oil, or animal by products.

 

Gabriel Cosmetics: Offers organic skincare and vegan & gluten free cosmetics. Created to bring out a woman’s natural existing beauty. The moisturizing liquid foundation shade offers a small variety of various deep skin tones. Their Zuzu Luxe oil-free foundation comes in shades that go from a honey complexion to deep dark.

Natural vs. Organic vs. Cruelty Free vs. Vegan

Health, Info & Tips, Skincare

So if you’re new to this world of green living I’m sure you’ve heard of the terms organic, vegan, and cruelty free. But maybe you’re not sure what this all means and what you should be looking out for. It can get confusing when you’re trying to make healthy purchasing decisions. I’m here to help clear up any misconceptions and equip you with the knowledge and understanding that may make it a little easier.

Now that all these terms are trending you are seeing them everywhere. It’s hard to come by a product and not see it labeled as natural, organic, vegan, non-GMO, or something along those lines. Trying to decipher between all these labels and chose the one that best suits you can be a daunting task. So overwhelming that it’s tempting to give up and just go the most economical option that makes you feel safest. Hopefully I can clear up a lot of common misconceptions and give you some practical knowledge so that you feel confident the next time you’re strolling through the isles of your local grocer.

 

“Natural”- People often assume if a product is natural then that means it’s also organic however this is false. The term natural is often used by manufactures as a marketing ploy to make you think the product doesn’t contain any harmful ingredients. There is no regulation from the FDA about labeling a product as “natural”. This means that anyone can use that term without any stipulation. This is also why it is important to read your ingredient list and labels carefully. Something labeled as “natural” can contain artificial ingredients, pesticides, hormones, and other additives. Some manufacturers cover this by including one ingredient that is natural and or plant based. Currently the only terms that are regulated are USDA Organic, Cruelty Free, and Non-GMO.

Source: usda.gov

Organic- The term organic basically means to be derived from living matter. Simply stated organic means to be grown or produced without the use of pesticides, synthetic ingredients, antibiotics, and genetically modified organisms. The easiest way to tell if a product is organic is to look for the USDA seal. The USDA Organic Program is a government-approved certifier that takes the manufacturer through a rigorous process that examines the farming practices the ingredient or animal derived from. Unlike the term “natural” only organic offers government-backed assurance that products are grown and processed without the use of toxic chemicals, antibiotics, or synthetic growth hormones.

Source: peta.org

Cruelty Free & Vegan Cruelty free is means that no ingredients in the product were tested on animals. Vegan means that the product does not contain any animal ingredients. Just because something is cruelty free doesn’t automatically mean that it’s free of animal derived substances, even if they don’t appear in the final product. The most common cruelty free & vegan label is verified by PETA; People for Ethical Treatment of Animals. You’ll know by the bunny symbol in the logo. When a product has this label a company or manufacturer is agreeing not conduct or pay for any tests on animals for ingredients, formulations, or finished products and do not contain any animal by-products. PETA requires companies to sign a statement of assurance and they pay to license the cruelty free bunny logo on the label.

Source: nongmoproject.org

Non-GMO- This labeling is something fairly new seen on the market. The Non-GMO Project was founded in 2005 as a non profit organization aiming to provide labeling for products that did not contain any genetically modified organisms. In case you’re not familiar with the term GMO essential it’s an organism that has had it’s DNA altered or modified in some way. In common terms it’s when scientists get involved to create or duplicate something derived from nature, or in others words trying to recreate nature through genetic engineering. The mission of the Non-GMO project is to preserve and build sources of Non-GMO products and educate consumers. Currently in the US the most common items that are genetically modified are soy and corn. This is because of the mass production, feeding, and use for agriculture purposes. As a general rule of thumb if you are eating or using a product that derives from corn or soy make sure that it has the Non-GMO Product or USDA Organic label on it. For meats and dairy look for that label as well or animals that are 100% grass fed or pasture-fed.

 

Here are some final tips and food for thought. When shopping look for any of the afore mentioned labels. Another work around is to shop at your local farmers markets. You’re more likely to find non-GMO food from local farmers. Most large industrial farms use some form of GMO. I love farmers markets because not only are you supporting small businesses in your community but you can talk to the famers directly and ask them questions about their farming practices.

 

Do you have any tips? Please share them in the comments below.

Lack of Healthy Beauty options for Black Women

Featured, Info & Tips, Lifestyle, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

Recently the Environmental Working Group did a study on the market for black cosmetics. According to the studies less than 25% of products marketed to black women score low in potentially dangerous hazardous ingredients. This means that the majority of products currently on the market targeted at black women contain ingredients that can potentially cause serious harm to our health. They also updated their Skin Deep database to include over 1,000 products marketed to black women. This is awesome news because now you can check the hazardous levels of the products you probably use regularly.

I’ve been pushing the green lifestyle for a while now and it amazes me just how much women of color are still not aware. Even in my everyday life I meet women who have no idea that their personal care products are not safe. The looks on faces is one of shock and astonishment when I proceed to tell them that they cannot trust crafty marketing or even the government for that matter when it comes to beauty product shopping. Just a few days ago I was having a conversation with a black woman from my church about Secret deodorant. I stopped using traditional deodorant and actually go without most days. I wrote an article on the blog discussing the dangers of using traditional deodorant and natural alternatives. To sum it up I explained to this woman that she should stop using Secret deodorant because of the aluminum and other carcinogens that are linked to breast cancer and other diseases. Thankfully her response was one of gratitude as if I saved her life. In actuality I pretty much did in the long run.

createher-stock-care-free-curls-19

Even though I’m still able to educate people I come in contact with in person and online via this blog; what that conversation and EWG’s report tells me is that there is still more work to be done. Research has mostly focused on chemical hair straighteners for black women and girls. As a woman sporting her natural hair, I think it’s awesome how the natural hair movement has exploded. However it’s bigger than just our hair. While it’s great that we are embracing our curls and staying away from parabens and sulfates in our hair products, what about our lipsticks, lotions, etc.?? And truth be told not even all the natural hair products are actually “natural”. You still have to read your labels and be cautious when purchasing those items as well. It’s sad that it feels like you need a degree in chemistry in order to buy beauty products but unfortunately until better regulation is in place this is what we have to do. We have to continue to educate ourselves about the ingredients in everything that we use.

ewg_bwc_straightners_c02

image from ewg.org

As I look around at the various blogs, events, and social media platforms I don’t really see a wealth of information about being conscious when it comes to every other beauty product that is used in the black community aside from our hair. This gives off the message that all we are focused on is our hair. So as long as our hair is slayed then we’re good. Sorry (not sorry) ladies but this is not enough! With black women being the highest on the list of fibroids, infertility, and other health concerns we should be much more prevalent about the practices of our whole body not just hair.

source: ewg.org

source: ewg.org

“This report makes clear the lack of safer alternatives for black women. Demand for these products is increasing and the cosmetics industry needs to provide healthy beauty options for black women” –Women’s Voices for the Earth. This is one of the many reasons why I created my holiday gift guide featuring black owned green beauty brands. While there aren’t as many as others there are still options.

You may be reading this article and thinking; well what can I do about it. Continue to support green beauty bloggers like myself and other organizations such as Women’s Voices for the Earth and Black Women for Wellness. Stay up to date on what hazardous ingredients are by checking websites and databases like Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep and the ThinkDirty app. Think twice before just picking up an item at your local retailer and placing it in your shopping cart. Take the time to read the label, read the ingredients in the product. If you’re not sure what an ingredient is look it up through one of the databases I mentioned. If you see that a product has harmful ingredients start looking for safer alternatives. Start supporting organic natural beauty brands like the ones I mentioned in my holiday gift guide.

Major companies only see and understand money. People always tell me that buying organic or going green is expensive. I admit that yes at times it can be a bit pricier than traditional items. However I believe in the buying power we have. The beauty industry is a trillion dollar business with black women accounting for the majority of that. If more people made conscious decisions when it comes to buying beauty products a lot can change. If you can get companies to stop using sulfates I believe we can push them to create all beauty products without toxic ingredients. Trust me they will take notice of people opting not to buy toxic beauty products when they start losing money.

 

Have you read EWG report? What are your thoughts?

Resource: ewg.org Big Market for Black Cosmetics but less Hazardous Choices Limited 

Khamila is Green and Glam!

Lifestyle

 

How long have you been going green with your health and or beauty routine?

I have been going green for about 1-2 years officially or so with my beauty routine. 

 

Why did you decide to go non-toxic & organic and how has it changed your life?

 I actually accidentally slipped into non toxic and organic skincare due to my skin reacting to products from my dermatologist as well as over the counter products. My eczema was flaring up and it was hard to use anything without my skin stinging. I found that coconut oil was soothing for my skin and actually healed my skin faster. I began to ponder if conventional products were irritating my skin and essentially doing nothing for me in terms of healing. I was pretty sold from then on and it’s allowed me to not deal with eczema, skin sensitivity or allergies being triggered . Using non toxic skincare and makeup allows my skin to glow more and seems to help it to heal faster and as a result I can use less makeup. It has also helped me to be more thoughtful about what I purchase as well. 

khamila-is-green-glam-2

What is your go to green beauty product?

Go to Hair: Olive Oil and Whipped Shea Butter 

Go to Body Care: Coconut Oil , Body Scrubs from 100% Pure 

Go to Skin Care: Juice Beauty Green Apple Brightening Cleanser, 100% Coffee Bean Eye Cream , Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin B Enzyme Cleansing Oil & makeup Remover, Acure Organics Brightening Facial Scrub

Go to Makeup: 100% pure Fruit Pigmented Healthy Skin Foundation and Powder, W3ll People Bio Brightener Stick in Moonstone, W3ll People Expressionist Mascara, Jane Iredale Brown eyeliner, I also love the Teri Miyahira Beauty Box Subscription

 

What does going green mean for you?

Going green represents self care to me because I get to choose ingredients that do not harm me. I get to use nontoxic products that heal my skin and doesn’t wreck my skin. I also get to be more mindful about what I use, and am able to choose products that leave a positive imprint on the world.

 

What advice do you have for someone who is new to the idea of going green?

  • Slowly transition into green beauty. Unless you have the budget for it, it will be costly going out and purchasing all new personal products. Instead as your products run out, take note and consider new nontoxic products that you can transition into. 
  • Start following green beauty lovers on social media to be aware of brands, products & their performance. If a product interests you then try reading reviews so that you can make a thoughtful and informed decision on whether to purchase.
  • Always try samples so you can get a feel for the products and shades prior to purchasing. I always advise to shop at businesses with great customer service and return policy because  no matter how well you may research a product it just may not work well for you! 
  • Always try to reach out to a company if you need with finding your shade of foundation and there are no samples. You can usually send them a photo of yourself (bare faced, in the light) which will help them to assess your skin tone and make suggestions.

 

How can we keep up with you?

I can be found on Instagram @greenmilamonster  

Pinterest at @greenmilamonstr 

I am also in the process of building my website which will be announced on my Instagram when complete! 
khamila-is-green-glam-3

Monique is Green and Glam!

Lifestyle

Based on the title you may be wondering what is Green & Glam? This is a new series I am launching where you will hear from different women of color sharing their stories on how they started living a more green healthy lifestyle and changed their health and beauty routine.

I’m so excited to share this with you all because I think it’s a great way to build a sense of community and learn tips & tricks from others along the way. My first interview for this series is my beautiful friend Monique also known online as Brown Skin Green Beauty! Monique and I attended the Indie Beauty Expo together and had such an amazing time. I know you’ll enjoy reading this just as much as I did!

 

How long have you been going green with your health and or beauty routine?

I have a 2 part answer for this. My mindset for going green has been 9 years. My true practice in green beauty has been 7 years. The early two years were all about education and transitioning.

 

Why did you decide to go non-toxic & organic and how has it changed your life?

It all started with my hair. Conventional hair care products were doing more damage to my hair than good. At my wits end, I turned to plant based food to see if it would save my hair and it did! I figured, if this can do wonders for my hair, I want to see how well it would work for my body inside out. So far, nature has served me well.  It’s amazing to see my body transform into better health with the use of organic and non toxic ingredients.

When I witnessed nature nourishing and healing my body, it was my rebirth to health and a big wake up call to all the misinformation we’ve been given for so long. I no longer had to summit to conventional products to survive. Non toxic, natural and organic products allowed me the freedom to live life. I’m more sensitive to what my body is whispering to me, more connected to nature and more aware of my environment.

 

What is your go to green beauty product?

I have so many, but the one that is on repeat with me is the Plain Jane Beauty Liquid Creme Mineral Foundation #14. It took me forever to find a natural foundation that actually works with my complexion. PJB gave hope for us dark skin green beauties! And let me not forget the amazing ingredients it offers to nourish and heal the skin while looking fabulous.

 

monique-cupid-2-green-and-glam

What does going green mean for you?

Going green means self awareness and knowing the truth behind the lies.

 

What advice do you have for someone who is new to the idea of going green?

It can be so overwhelming when entering the green living arena. Ease into it. Take it one product/ one ingredient at a time when transitioning. Find a green beauty/ living advocate to help you along your journey. Trust me, before you know it, it will be second nature to you.

 

How can we keep up with you? 

Yes… Let’s stay connected! You can find me on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest @brownskingreenbeauty. I’m working on a blog next. Would love to hear from you all!

 

Black Owned Non-Toxic Beauty Brands | 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Feminine Hygiene, Make-Up, Natural Hair, Skincare

This platform is all about uplifting and spreading the word on healthy non-toxic living. In keeping up with the spirit of upliftment and encouragement I wanted to highlight some awesome women of color who have created amazing non-toxic beauty brands. Here is a list of black-owned green beauty and non-toxic brands to support this holiday season!

 

Skin & Body Care

All-Natural & Organic Vegan based skin care line Jacqs Organics

Natural & Organic, Spa Quality Skincare Apple Rose Beauty 

Caribbean Inspired Organic Handcrafted Skincare  Calypso Glow 

All natural aromatherapy skin and hair care line Natural Annie Essentials 

Pure, natural, luxurious skin care LaBelle Femme Products

Artisan natural skin care beauty products Zandra Beauty

Natural handmade skin care with beneficial ingredients Oh Honey Skin Care

All natural, multi purpose vegan beauty product Base Butter 

Natural fun bath & body products Pooka Pure and Simple 

High quality natural skin care products from natural ingredients Okoko Cosmetiques 

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Lavish Cocoa Body Butter | DIY

Skincare

Last week I talked about how much I enjoy making DIY green beauty items at home. Not only is it fun but it’s also a great way to know what’s in your products. In this post I’m sharing a recipe for a cocoa body butter that will leave your skin feeling nourished and silky soft. It’s a combination of coconut oil and cocoa butter so it smells simply delish!

 

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DIY Brown Sugar Hair and Body Butter

Natural Hair, Skincare

 

I love incorporating natural oils and butters into my daily personal care routine . Knowing what’s inside your products is so important because we have to protect ourselves from the dangers of toxic ingredients. What better way to be safe than to create your own beauty products from home! So I’ve partnered with CurlMix to provide this delicious DIY recipe that you can use on your hair and body.

 

What is CurlMix? CurlMix is the first DIY box formulated for curly hair. This subscription box service allows you to create your own natural beauty products in your kitchen. Each month you get a box of raw ingredients to create things like shampoo, conditioner, stylers, or creams for the hair and or body. It’s fun and exciting because not only do they use all natural ingredients but each month you create something different. CurlMix aims to empower the conscious curly consumer through education. They believe that you shouldn’t sacrifice integrity for beauty. This is so inline with my mission here at The Holistic Honey which is not sacrificing health in the name of beauty!

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