Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Natural Beauty Series - Meet Modesta From "Grozio Gurmane"

Hi Lovelies,

Welcome back! And if you are new here, welcome πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’•

Lithuanian green beauty blogger Modesta from "Grozio Gurmane"

Today I want you to meet Natural Beauty that is Modesta - she is a fellow Lithuanian with a passion for natural and organic haircare, and she is making waves with her Lithuanian green beauty blog called "Grozio Gurmane" (little tip, use installed translator if you don't know the language but still want to read her blog). Just like myself, she is 8+ years in her green beauty journey and thankfully she is sharing all her experience with us - check out her website and Instagram page, they are just beautiful!

Shall we get started?

πŸ’• Tell us a bit more about yourself?  Name and where are you from?

My name is Modesta, I am based in Vilnius, Lithuania. I have a website called GroΕΎio GurmanΔ—, which means “beauty gourmet” and talk about organic beauty care, ingredients and selfcare. Prior to my blog, I worked at organic beauty and food store as a store manager. During these few years I gained some knowledge and did not want to keep it to myself only, rather contrary, wanted to share it. My main idea was and still is to show to my readers, that organic and cruelty free cosmetic is better for your skin and overall health, that it has less impact to environment and is still serving cosmetics and beauty care purpose.

πŸ’• How has going natural and non-toxic in your beauty regimen changed your overall health and beauty?

It’s almost 9 years when I turned to organic beauty care products. At first, I was very radical and thrown or sold a lot of my beauty care products or make up. I was never make up guru, yet had some fancy stuff. I remember, I sold few products and for the money went to spend few days by the sea side. That was crazy!
It all started with haircare. Back then, I had long dark hair, which I dyed. But I was never happy with my hair. Few weeks after I cut them, usually they started to look damaged and I always had split ends. Split ends are very visible on dark hair. I started to cut them even more often – every month. At that moment, I used a lot of famous hair ends’ oils, conditioners and masks, but it seemed that it never works. Then I started making hair masks with food ingredients. And from that point all started. I changed the shampoo, then all other products to organic ones. At that time, it was quite hard to find good products in my local stores, so I joined organic beauty lovers’ community and started to purchase things online. I did not notice, when and how my all beauty cabinet turned into organic beauty shop display 😊 It was quite a journey with ups and downs, but organic beauty care products let me grow my long, thick, healthy and natural color hair. I feel that change had a big impact to the way I think, because when I read articles about ingredients, I make my own research - because I always wanted a “convenient” and organic product, that does it's job.

πŸ’• Three things that make you happy?

There are so many things that make me happy, but the very firsts I can think of is sun, traveling and good food.

Natural Beauty Modesta
πŸ’• What is the best advice you've been given?

“Even this will pass”. No matter what, whether it’s a good or a bad experience, it will pass. This helps me a lot in difficult situations and reminds me that I manage to survive during hard moments.

πŸ’• What people inspire you?

Passionate, brave, open minded, true to themselves.

πŸ’• What are your three (or five) can't-live-without-it green beauty products? Picture please!

My absolute favorite face care products are Dr. Hauschka and I can’t live without their Moisturizing and Quince creams.
My current favorite face cleansing product is The Organic Pharmacy Carrot Butter.
And I can swear by White Magnolia Champaka Hydrosol (Hydrolat). I use it from Lithuanian manufacturer KvapΕ³ namai. The smell is warm, floral, calming and for me – the best on this Earth.

πŸ’• Your best DIY recipe?

When I started to care about the beauty products I use, there was a moment when I made them myself. I have few recipes in my blog here and here. Please use an installed translator and let me know, how did you find them!

πŸ’• What do you like and dislike about yourself?

If you are asking about outer features, I love my hair and eyes. Even people describe me like: that girl with big blue eyes and beautiful hair 😊
I like that I am kind and do not take anything as granted, therefore I try to feel grateful for everything I receive. But sometimes I can be not enough determined (or maybe these plans are not worth it?) and judgmental.

πŸ’• Your proudest achievement?

If we are talking about blog and organic beauty related achievement, then I would mention a successful beauty seminar about hair care. I organized and hosted that event. I am so grateful for the professional lectors and great attendees. That was a really great opportunity to talk about hair care and how organic beauty products can help to solve some big problems like hair loss, dull hair, some hair illnesses. There were 5 lectors – a dietician, 2 hairdressers and beauty salon owners, a doctor and an organic business owner.

πŸ’• What are you currently reading?

Currently I read three books: Gary Chapman “The 5 Love Languages”, Brian Tracy “Goals!”, Umberto Eco “The Prague Cemetery”.

πŸ’• What food do you like to cook/eat?

I am not a big fan of making food, but I am a foodie. I love pasta, pastries and vegetables. I am not vegetarian, but I don’t eat red meat (all, except chicken, fish and seafood). I love a dish of pasta, chicken and sour cream.

πŸ’• If you were to formulate a natural skincare or beauty product, what it would be?

It would be a hair care line! I am passionate about hair care products. I would start with oil for split ends that has that silicone-like feeling, except that there would not be any silicone.

πŸ’• Your guilty pleasure?

Oh my… I can never say no to a good pastry and pasta dish.

πŸ’• Your top tips for being healthy and happy?

It will sound cheesy and nothing new, but simply drinking enough water, exercising and being positive can change a life in one blink of an eye. I started to feel way better and energized, when quit red meat 9 years ago. This had a huge impact for my blood, migraine, looks.

πŸ’• What scents excite you?

Two years ago, I noticed, that I start feeling sick after I smell sweet, cheap perfume. It causes me a headache. Therefore, I choose more natural options, like hydrosols. Unfortunately, they do not last, but it makes me feel good. I love warm, floral, sometimes wooden tones, like White Magnolia Champak or Sandalwood.

πŸ’• What is your mantra in life? 

Everything happens for a reason.

πŸ’• What's your favorite beauty trend at the moment?

I think I am not very into the beauty trends. Contrary, I noticed that I try trendy things too late 😊

πŸ’• Once a week for my health…

… I do a mud mask and drink energizing smoothie instead of coffee.

πŸ’• 3 resources every girl needs…

I use the only source – 😊 Usually, when I need something, I check few resources and in most cases, they are different. Currently I don’t have one or two databases I trust – I check few at once. I recommend to check Organic Beauty Blogger and La Pepa Boutique.

πŸ’• What do you do to de-stress?

Share my pain with a friend. Talking to that one very special friend helps me to see the situation from a different angle. Also, I light a candle, snuggle in a blanket and spend some time reading. A candle and a calming tea helps to relax and calm that freaked out mind. I have one special tea which works magic for me! And it is a present from Dublin.

πŸ’• Last thing you do at night?

Unfortunately, check my phone. Usually I check, if alarm is on. 

πŸ’• A few words to Green Life In Dublin readers?

Renata’s blog is a great source of organic beauty reviews and she has a strong opinion about the ingredients – I truly believe you can trust her judgment! 😊

(Aww, thank you Modesta! - Renata).

That is all for now, I hope you enjoyed reading this interview! It is fun to get to know Natural Beauties from all around the world, isn't it? If you want to, you can also check out interviews with lovely Sasha from Balanced Beauty Bristol, Vita from Vita Lives Free, Michele from BVGAN and Andie from Andie the Green Queen, Andrea from Organic Beauty Lover, and last but not least, Linda or Lindalu19.

That is all for now, see you here next Monday!
Lots of Love πŸ’•

Monday, August 21, 2017

What Natural Products Does Mr. Green Life In Dublin Use?

Hi Lovelies,

Welcome back! And if you are new here, welcome πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’•

What Mr Green Life In Dublin uses

Today I wanted to share with you what Mr. Anti Social Media Green Life In Dublin uses in his daily life. A little preview: he is such a macho man that wouldn't use ANY product at all, and when I transitioned to the "green side" many years ago, I was met with a strong resistance for many years. After a few disagreements we resorted to having "his" and "hers" products of every kind, but now I am doing happy dance, because I see that vast majority of the toxic products have vanished from the house.  I gave up arguing and trying to prove my point many years ago and just let him to come to his own conclusions, and he finally saw that "mine" natural products work just as good as their toxic counterparts, and in many cases even better! In the last two years he even started showing interest into natural products, much to my surprise, because up until that point all he used was soap, shampoo and a toothpaste. Yes, not even a moisturiser or shaving cream, nuffing! Even to this day he still does not have the two, and if I want to employ him as a (very unwilling) human test bunny, I have to chase him down to the ground and slap a cream or any other product on some body part. After some grunting and puffing he finally admits that the product was "fine", so I quietly add it to his slowly growing stash. "Fine" is usually what I get for a feedback, and if some product gets "nice", that means I can safely get a product five stars out of five! As you can guess, he is a man of a few words. Heck, he even started reading ingredients on products in the shops, and sourced one rather impressive natural medical cream on his own, so I am rather impressed! I always tell people that they don't have to get chemist degree and try to decripter every single ingredient in products - switching to natural products does not have to be super confusing and daunting task it seems at the beginning, nor you have to carry a list of bad ingredients to avoid - make it simple for yourself and look for ingredients you CAN understand (and pronounce!) and you are on the right track! And the less ingredients the product has, the better in my opinion. So I guess all that has rubbed onto him somehow. And when I once glanced at his chest of drawers and saw a nice little collection growing, I thought to myself it's probably the time to post about it. 

Shall we begin?

Burt's Bees Almond & Milk Hand Cream

This was acquired in a Holland & Barret post Christmas sale, where he took initiative to buy us a few discounted sets of Burt's Bees and DrOrganic products. Nothing of them worked apart this hand cream, so it remains to this day, although I would like him to move on from Burt's Bees - after the company sold to Clorox, it is no longer cruelty free in my mind. (no company is cruelty free if their parent isn't if you ask me). But one thing at a time, and patience is the key here.

Burt's Bees Baby Bee Shampoo

Burt's Bees Baby Bee Shampoo and Wash

This product was the tipping point in him switching to the green side, because this was an exact product that erased his "backne" in a matter of week, whereas it was a persistent problem for years! He wouldn't listed to me when I was telling him the root cause is SLS in his "regular" shampoo, and he was on forever search for the next pill, cream or liquid that would help. Problem sorted itself out when he found himself with no shampoo and had to use whatever was on hand, aka this Burt's Bees one, and lo behold his backne was reduced in half after using it once, and totally gone after second or third use! That quickly made him a convert, and I quietly congratulated myself on winning first battle while doing a happy dance :)

Nyr Men Purifying Face Wash

A newest addition in my husband's arsenal, I got this in my last Nyr order, and hopefully he will like enough to ask for a full size. 

Flying Wild Organic Foot Balm

A product by my favourite Irish company, I have a full review on the products here, but it seems to be discontinued now. I sent an email to the company to ask about it, about a week later still no reply. I will keep you posted on this. My husband and I enjoyed their wonderful hand balm as well (note to myself, get more soon!)

Om Botanical Eczema Relief

This is great for eczema or any kind of skin inflammation - my husband is breaking out in weird places like a back of his head, so he asked if I would have any products that would help with this. One of the things I gave him was this, and he liked it the most. He said it is great in a way that it helps the breakouts heal by reducing inflammation in the area. We are sad to see it coming to an end and he even asked how much the product costs and was sad to learn it came from US, meaning he would get those damned custom charges if he went on to re-purchase it. Wish those pesky charges went away, they drive me crazy! (they more than double the price of the product for the consumer, and the money don't go to the maker of the products either, so the only "winner" in this situation is the middlemen, not brands or people. I talk (rant) more about it here.)

Theraneem Naturals Neem Leaf & Aloe Gel 

This was bought with the intention to replace the product above, but it is no match, nor it helped much with the breakouts. Despite this, I want to try a few more products from the brand. I have my eye on the shampoo and the tooth powder I spied with my little eye. My husband stopped using this product for a while, but now that I see it can be used post shaving, I will move this product to the bathroom to be used up.

Manuka Doctor Manuka & Tea Tree Antiseptic Gel with Propolis

I first discovered the beauty of manuka and tea tree oil gel when I got a sample of it from Living Nature, it worked like magic on blemishes. That product is really wonderful and natural, but also hella expensive, so we compromised on Manuka Doctor, which is only half natural, but also costs a fraction of the price. (Me, I tend to treat those kind of products like they are worth their weight of gold and administer only when needed; my hubby can go through a tube at a blink-and-you-will miss it rate, so it makes sense to go cheaper)

Human & Kind Hand + Elbow + Foot Cream

I received this and a couple of more H&K products for a review and found them too strongly scented for me, so this product found home in my husband's stash. If he decided to repurchase it, it is easily available here, it is by Irish brand after all. 

Puressentiel Articulations & Muscles Massage Gel

This was the product my husband sourced on his own, and I have to say I am proud of him for doing so! I should mention that his is physical job involving a lot of heavy lifting, so his joints are suffering as a result. He has tried almost anything there is to try when it comes to joint products, and his verdict was that this helps far better than any conventional gel on the market. This consists of 14 essential oils in a base of turpentine, which is derived from tree resin. We are onto a second or third jar of it - I feel it will be a repurchase for life here in Casa Green Life In Dublin :)

and one more product that didn't make the cut to the main picture purely because it didn't pass the "aesthetically pleasing" test, but it is a very good product nonetheless, is:

100%Pure Organic Neem Oil

Organic neem oil

I am so so glad this really natural oil is available locally via some health shops - it works wonders on all kinds of skin "boo boos" - it was the only thing that helped with my daughter's diaper rash when she was little (sorry for TMI) and now it is very helpful for Mr. Green Life In Dublin breakouts, so we also constantly have it in the house. This is great for hair too, but one thing to warn you, this smells horrible! Like marinated man's socks or something. Not for everyone. We don't mind the smell because we know how good this stuff is, but if it's your first time using, you might think it is gone off - don't worry, it is supposed to be that way. Give it some time to work it's magic and you will be a convert too.

I guess I should also mention a couple more products that I notice my man steals from me, aka he likes the products, but they are technically mine - that would be Mahalo Balm or Mahalo Rare Indigo Balm, Walden Perfume in A Different Drummer and he uses whatever toothpaste or shower gel I leave in the bathroom, although the only positive comment I got from him was about Dudu-Osun Black Soap - he said he liked the versatility of it and the fact it lathers well. 

So that is all the news I have to report from the dark side! Let me know if you found this post interesting and if you would like to see posts like this in the future?

What is the situation in your house? Do your husbands / boyfriends like using natural products? And if you a man reading this, how natural are you with your routine? Please share with me, I would love to know.

That is all for now,
Lots of Love πŸ’•
Disclaimer: this post features a mix of items bought with our own money, as well as PR products. I am very clear about it in my reviews. No affiliate links here.
Disclaimer II: You can't use my photos or my blog text without my permission. 
Disclaimer III: I hope  the background does not offend anyone. Decided to do something different than pretty picture with flowers in it :)

Friday, August 18, 2017

Love Lula Beauty Box August 2017

Hi Lovelies,

Welcome back! And if you are new here, welcome πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’•

Love Lula Beauty Box August 2017

So after a little break from blogging and social media, I am back with a smile on my face and ready to blog, blog, blog! It's what I love doing, and I hope you enjoy it too.

In today's post we will look what's in latest Love Lula beauty box, shall we? It feels like a treat each month, doesn't it? I know I always look forward to mine! And I love how much thought and effort Love Lula team are putting into it - the products tend to be one or more of these characteristics -cruelty-free, vegan, natural ingredients, organic, ethically sourced etc. Speaking of taking the guesswork off your shoulders!

Beauty Brews Bliss Tea

Talk about perfect timing! I was bored of all my usual teas and wanted to try something different, so I was chuffed to see this. Organic teas are always appreciated at my house, so thank you Love Lula! I never bought Beauty Brews tea before, so it is my first time trying the brand, and I have to say I love what's brand all about - natural teas sans fillers and bleached tea bags are up my alley, and from what I looked around, this brand is great - Beauty Brews is dedicated to sourcing the finest organic teas that combine tried and tested ingredients into delicious blends, each with a specific flavour combination to help you enjoy moments of harmony, peace and beauty that help bring mind, body and soul into natural balance. The health benefits of natural teas such as green tea and rooibos tea have been known throughout the ages. In addition to these healing properties, herbal teas can also improve mental and spiritual well-being and create the setting for mindfulness, meditation and wellbeing.

Very true! Almost all problems can be sorted with a good cuppa :) Everybody got different flavors, I got Bliss and I really love it. Want to try more teas from this brand now.

Balm Balm Camomile floral water

Another item I am really happy to see in this box as it was on my wishlist! Now I get to try a mini version of it, how cool. Fingers crossed it will good, and I have a feeling my dry and sensitive skin will love it. After all, camomile is one of the most soothing things for your skin, and my skin definitely needs soothing right now. Scent is a bit strong and not what I expected though.

PHB Eyeliner in brown

Love Lula, how did you know I am in the market for a great natural eyeliner? We got PHB mascara (which I love) in the last month's box, and now we get an eyeliner. I only ever wear black eyeliner, so I wasn't super keen on brown, but I will happily test the formula and staying power. I will try it on my brows too.

As I happen to live outside of UK, they couldn't send
Glossworks 3in1 top coat and nail polish unfortunately, so instead I got:

Love Lula Beauty Box

Glossworks cuticle oil

This came in a really nice hefty glass bottle with a luxe feel to it, and after using only once, I can tell you that first impressions are good, the oil is lightweight and sinks in quickly. Really natural and minimal ingredients too.

Ooh! - Oils of Heaven Natural Cacay Anti-Aging Face Oil Travel Size

That's a mouthful, isn't it? Anyway, this looks promising, the description says that it contains 50% more vitamin E and twice the amount of Linoleic Acid than Argan Oil as well as 3 times more Retinol than Rose Hip Oil, giving it powerful anti-aging power. It is a fast absorbing, odourless, dry oil that leaves no residue. I will keep you updated.

So, I am really happy to start playing with the new goodies. Err, testing, I mean testing! They ship worldwide, and at the price is 13.95£ is is one of the best value boxes around! I mean you constantly get two or more full size products each month, and the sample sizes are always deluxe samples, allowing you to get a good feel of the product. And let's not forget, you get 20% off of the brands featured each month too! 13.95£ is a monthly recurring price for UK and for us international gals there are two options of three months (52.50£) or a year (210£) including post and packaging. Green beauty boxes are a great way to discover new items you might have missed otherwise, and I love that anything coming from LoveLula is cruelty free and guaranteed not to have any toxic ingredients - they have very strict criteria for any product they accept, and that is taking the guesswork off your shoulders. Another thing they recently started doing, is selling off the remains of their previous boxes, and at a very good prices too, so keep your eyes peeled if you fancy buying one off boxes.

         You can subscribe to Love Lula box here.

             Or shop LoveLula website here.

What beauty boxes are you guys subscribed to? What is your favourite products discovered this way? Please share, I really want to know. Have a great weekend everybody!

P.s. Please make my day and like and share this or any of my blog posts on social media. Thank You!
Follow me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and YouTube. (someday I will start making YouTube videos, promise!)

That is all for now,
Lots of Love πŸ’•

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Dudu Osun Black Soap Review

Hi Lovelies,

Welcome back! And if you are new here, welcome πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’•

Duru Osun Black African Soap

 Today I wanted to share one of my favourites natural products with you, the one that slips away when it comes to review it (no pun intended). This product is one of those products that I used for well over a year before reviewing it. A year is a sufficient time to test the product, would you agree?

I first heard about black african soap when I researched all truly natural products that wouldn't irritate my dermatitis affected skin, and after looking at all natural ingredients and watching a few YouTube videos where people praised it for clearing acne prone skin (even bad cases of it), I knew I wanted it and I wanted it now! 

Luckily this beauty is widely available via health shops and online, Love Lula carries it, so wherever you happen to live, it is available to you (yay for free shipping and vast array of natural products or what?)

Now, let's look into the product, shall we?
Dudu-Osun the Original Black Soap is still produced the old traditional way. Dudu-Osun (Black Soap) consists of naturally occurring skin care ingredients that African ancestors already knew about and used. Dudu-Osun cleanses, nourishes, protects and refreshes your skin. It contains no artificial dyes and is completely biodegradable. Natural Ingredients in the Black Soap include Shea Butter, Aloe Vera, Pure Honey, Palm Kernel Oil, Camwood (African Sandalwood), Citrus Extract, Glycerine and Ashes from Cocoa Pods which give the soap its unique black colour.
This high quality natural soap is still produced in the traditional way - regional small farmers in Nigeria use palm kernel oil, which is boiled with ash (from burnt palm leaves and cocoa beans) - with modern technology to traditional recipes. The other ingredients are added after the saponification process, and thus retain their quality. The characteristic color receives the compressed natural soap by its ash content. The high-quality, cold-pressed Shea butter, which is traditionally made from the fruit seeds of the sacred applicable Shea tree (shea tree), gives black soap the nourishing and moisturizing properties.

Dudu Osun African Black Soap

I must say I really love that is is all natural with minimal ingredients, and the fact that it comes in cardboard box with no plastic wrapping around the soap is a winner with me, as it means it is a waste free product. I find it is non drying soap that suds up very nicely, easy to use and it lasts a long time too. Can be used for shaving too. I really love it and have repurchased it a few times in this year alone. As it is in a bar form, it means it is convenient for travels, and it is exactly what I take if we are going away somewhere. I don't want to lug shower gels (which my family love) when I travel, but after some initial murmurs they use it happily. Dark colour took some getting used to, I don't mind it personally, but my family did, at first. After seeing how good the soap actually is, no one bats an eyelid about it anymore. Some other natural soaps we had were too drying, did not lather or were gone in a matter of a couple of weeks if not days - Dudu Osun is none of those things. As it contains honey, I am afraid it is not for my vegan friends, but I happen to love honey in my products. (It is one of my favourite ingredients in fact). The fragrance free version comes in a white box, but you will still get a black soap inside. It definitely smells more natural than the classic perfumed one, but let me tell you this - I am uber sensitive to everything, and it gave me no trouble whatsoever. Both soaps have ph of 8. As you can see in the photo below, I am testing with ph strips, not a device. Let's look at the ingredients, shall we?

Dudu-Osun African Black Soap:

Palm Kernel Oil, Ashes of Burned Cocoa Bean Pods, Water, Natural Glycerine, Shea Butter, Perfume, Honey, Lemon Juice, Lime Juice, African Sandalwood(Camwood), Whole Leaf Extract of Aloe Vera.

Dudu-Osun Fragrance Free Black Soap:

Palm Kernel Oil, Ashes of Burned Cocoa Bean Pods, Water, Natural Glycerine, Shea Butter, Honey, Lemon Juice, Lime Juice, African Sandalwood(Camwood), Whole Leaf Extract of Aloe Vera.

African Black Soap

As you can see, it has minimal ingredients, all natural, apart questionable "perfume" in the regular soap. I have contacted the brand about it, as well as inquiring about their cruelty free status, and a couple of days later, they are yet to get back to me. I will update this blog post as soon as I will hear back from them.  Having in mind I see only plant based ingredients in products (apart from honey) I am assuming they are cruelty free, but I still want to confirm with them. *Update few days later - the brand didn't get back to me, but the EU distributors did, and their reply was that the perfume in the classic soap is Bio Certified.
If I were to find faults with this product, I would point out the palm oil in it, it is a huge global problem, but it is not an easy one to solve, as many and many families rely on it for their livelihood. So it is up to you to decide if you are ok with it or not? 

So, what are my final thoughts on it? I am not super happy about palm oil in it, not going to lie, but I am happy with it as far as the product's performance goes, it is really great. Plastic and thus waste free, made from all natural materials in a traditional way, it lathers well, can be used for the whole family,for all skin types too, especially for those prone to eczema and acne, lasts a long time, is travel friendly, can be used as a shaving agent too - what's not to love? I know I will be back for more.

Have you tried this black soap? What are your thoughts on it? Please share with me, I would love to know!

P.s. Please make my day and like and share this or any of my blog posts on social media. Thank You!
Follow me on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and YouTube. (someday I will start making YouTube videos, promise!)

That is all for now,
Lots of Love πŸ’•

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