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Greening Beauty Gift Giving In The Age of Organic

4 Nov

The challenge of holiday gift giving is a. to be unique and b. to be not so unique that your gifts go unappreciated.

For the ladies (and men!) on your list this holiday season 2012, organic beauty products are some of the best choices because they not only fulfill everyday needs and are useful products that most of us ritually use, they are also the healthier version of those personal care products we tend to use every day.

mvorganics greeningbeauty.wordpress

mvorganics greeningbeauty.wordpress

Marie Veronique Organics falls squarely into this product category of Good For Your Skin and Good For The Planet, Too. Marie Nadeau is a former chemistry teacher based in Berkeley, California who decided to create a simple skin care product line-beauty regime with the help of her physicist daughter, Dr. Jay Nadeau. As a mature woman going into this business venture, Marie’s emphasis was on anti-aging through the use of intelligent sunscreens and skincare …”the most important being safe and effective sunscreens made with intelligent ingredients.”

Just what are “intelligent ingredients” you may be wondering? Well, for the MVOrganics Moisturizing Face Screen / Everyday Sheer Coverage which protects against UVA rays with its non-nano zinc oxide, think red raspberry for healing and moisturizing, sea buckthorn and emu oils for their anti-premature aging reinforcements all topped off with a rich dose of anti-oxidants.

The sheer tinted coverage comes in SPF30 and SPF20 (with green tea and coffee berry extract) and both are hits over at the EWG. Tip: only those with porcelain skin tones can get away with wearing the Everyday Sheer Coverage SPF30; the SPF20 is good for most other skin tones. In fact, the product offers such complete skin tone even-ing coverage that when it was first marketed as simply a sunscreen, ladies started wearing it out in the evening as a light foundation and loving the matte effect it gives to the facial skin.

Not to miss – and this goes for you guys, as well – are the MVOrganics Anti-Aging mist and Anti-Aging Oil+. The mist is slightly fragrant with hints of geranium essence while the Anti-aging Oil that you gently massage into your neck, chest and face while the skin is still moist contains over 20 different kinds of oils like kiwi seed oil, meadowfoam oil and tamanu oil which results in a soothing essence reminiscent of that last great Swedish massage you had.

Packaging for the products is recyclable and the ingredients are all bio-degradable. “We don’t use toxins, petroleum-based products, nanoparticles, or anything else that’s potentially harmful,” states the founder, Marie Veronique. Check their website for prices and more product information.
mvorganics.com

@GreeningBeauty

 

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L’Essence Des Notes Perfume – Paris

15 Oct

essencedesnotes - greening beauty

by Paige Donner

Some of the freshest scents coming from Paris, France these days are from an artisan “parfumeur” dedicated not just to the clean purity of scents, but also to the clean purity of a perfume’s composition. The woman behind the brand is Huong Mangin, a French woman whose family originated from Vietnam. Her perfumes are created in Grasse, the historic “perfume capital” of France, and, arguably, the world.

During the recent Rives de la Beaute’ held in Paris this Autumn, much discussion surrounded the topic of “Scent as Art.” To elaborate, the discussion’s central point is about creating museums of scent, whereby a perfume can be held up, enshrined and admired as the piece of art, and historical reference point, that it is.

While she was designing her perfumes, Huong Mangin, General Manager of Fragrance et Beaute Francaises recalled her childhood scent-memories from Vietnam – the delicate florals, the fresh herbs and spices, the raw fragrances of her childhood and her ancestral home. When she began working with the iconic 5th generation family house of Mane, based in Grasse, in the south of France, these were some of the perfume essences she put forward in her design wishes.

Master perfumers Christian Vermorel, Céline Ripert and Frédérique Terranova took their cues from Madame Mangin and went to work creating the sublime perfumes that are L’Essence des Notes. The scents they worked with in their creations are from the Citrus/Fruity, Fougere, Chypree, Floral, Wood and Oriental/Amber families. Each perfume has a top note, a heart note and an end note. The top note and the end note are always different,  – the true mark of a quality perfume.

Some of the original perfumes you can find in the L’Essence des Notes perfume line: Orange & Litsee, Citron & Petitgrain, Lavande & Romarin, Cardamome & EmbrunsPamplemousse & Basilic, Myrte & Bergamote, Vetiver & Patchouli, and Coriandre & Bois de Cedre.

Their newest offerings are the premium range. These perfumes are: Rose de Kelaa, Oud de Kyara, and Oud d’Angkor. These are sensual perfumes that carry names to evoke journeys and the sense of escape.

Another remarkable thing about these perfumes are that they are ISO 9001 certified, which is a certification guaranteeing quality manufacturing procedures. Indeed, these perfumes are so clean, they are sold in Pharmacies in France. Mangin created her perfumes so that they would be as clean and natural as possible, and have sublime, enduring scents, the combinations of which are innovative and fresh.

lessencedesnotes.com

@GreenBlogNetwork

Dying To Be Beautiful

27 Oct

Peter Lamas shed light on the dangers of harsh chemicals hidden in common beauty products on October 22nd and 23rd, 2011 in Vancouver, B.C. At The West Coast Women’s Show

Dying_to_be_beautiful

As one of the leading international make-up artists and beauty experts in the world, Mr. Lamas began his career at Vidal Sassoon in NYC 30 years ago and quickly became a go-to for such classic beauties such as Jacqueline Onassis Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor, Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn and Gloria Vanderbilt. Today the Peter Lamas brand is known worldwide for its line of 100% percent vegan, natural products with a cult following which boasts a number of beauty editors and celebrities.  Continue reading

Weleda for Sports

2 Jun

by Paige Donner

Summer is here and with it all the outdoor sports we love to indulge in – tennis, jogging, tai chi, surfing… To take care of yourself while you’re taking care of yourself, have a go at the line of Weleda products designed for athletes.  The line is all natural and good for professional athletes as well as those of us who simply get outdoors to get in our workouts.

Greening Beauty - Espace Weleda Paris

Creme Sani-Pieds – This foot cream is made from organic myrrh and calendula extracts with lavendar and orange essential oils added. It’s non-greasy and leaves your feet feeling soft and refreshed, while aiding with perspiration.

Silver Birch Juice – To be mixed with water and drunk after your workout or throughout the day, this concentrate of silver birch leaf juice aids in elimination of toxins. The organic juice contains different substances whose “flavonoids” aid in elimination.

Copper Sulfate Tonic Gel for Legs – Runners and speedwalkers know the sensation of “heavy legs.” It comes from miles of pounding the pavement. This refreshing and tonifying gel, greaseless, is made from extracts of copper sulfate, lemon, arnica and essential oils. Keep it in the refrigerator for a particularly intensive after-workout therapy for your legs.

Greening Beauty - Espace Weleda Paris

Weleda is a  Swiss company that has been devoted to organic well-being products for 90 years. It is the official partner of  INSEP (Institut National du Sport, de l’Expertise et de la Performance) and has been chosen by the French medical commission for the National Olympic Committee of Sports for the London 2012 games.

Next time you are in Paris, book yourself and your sweetheart for a couples massage and, time permitting, a massage workshop. The Espace Weleda just off the Champs Élysées is a naturally inviting space that is used as a spa and also, primarily, as a place to educate clients about the Natrue certified Weleda products and how to use them effectively. Workshops are held several times a week and the couples massage workshop is very popular especially around Valentine’s Day.

www.espace-weleda.fr   10 Ave. Franklin D. Roosevelt 75008 Paris 

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Caudalie Spa

13 May

By Paige Donner

There is one spa that was voted The Best Spa In The World by Condé Nast readers in 2010. That spa is in France’s Bordeaux region and sits serenely in the middle of a vast and prestigious AOC Graves vineyard. The spa? It is Caudalie Vinothérapie Spa.

Caudalie Spa, Bordeaux, France - Greening Beauty c. Paige Donner

Photo by Paige Donner c. 2011 

On her parents’ vineyard and just next to her sister’s Small Luxury Hotel, Les Sources de Caudalie, in Bordeaux, Mathilde Thomas discovered a naturally occurring hot springs 540 feet below ground. This is the site on which she and her husband, Bertrand, built the signature Caudalie Spa based on the anti-oxidant, ant-aging properties they have patented from the seeds and skins of grapes.

Caudalie Vinotherapie beauty products are used exclusively at this idyllic spa in the Bordeaux countryside, in a vast wooden structure planted next to a pond with swans and indoor-outdoor swimming pools. Treatment rooms are both upstairs and downstairs and it is possible to walk from your hotel room in your robe to your spa treatment in the Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa with only a few feet of exposure to the outside air.

Caudalie Spa, Bordeaux, Greening Beauty c. Paige Donner

Caudalie Spa, Bordeaux, Greening Beauty c. Paige Donner

Famous among their treatments are the Barrel Bath, the Honey and Wine Wrap, the Pulp Friction Massage with fresh grapes and the Crushed Cabernet Scrub. At each of the relaxation stations are small dishes of fresh grapes alongside pitchers of fresh water. Portishead and other “lounge” music is piped in overhead from the sound system, unless you request classical or another genre.

Caudalie Spa Greening Beauty c. Paige Donner

You can also go for a simple Caudalie Grand Facial Treatment. This includes a full facial massage, gentle buffing cream made from a base of crushed grape seeds, a moisturizing (or purifying, as needed) mask and anti-ageing serum for eyes and lips. You also have the choice of a hand or foot massage. Afterwards you are welcome to linger downstairs in the lounge chairs that overlook the vineyards and dip into the pool that has strategic water jets fitted at just the perfect height to pulsate relaxing water onto your neck and shoulders.

There is also now a Caudalie Spa in NYC. Read More on Greening Beauty.

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Vinothérapie by Caudalie

14 Apr

By Paige Donner

Caudalie is a wine term, in French, that refers to the length of time the taste of a wine lingers in the mouth. The longer the better. It is a measurement of a wine’s quality.

Caudalie Vinotherapie, Greening BeautyA spa and beauty care line based on patents derived from bio-research on the beauty benefits of the grape, Caudalie is a fitting name for this French line that originated in the heart of Bordeaux, in fact in the prestigious Graves appellation.

Mathilde Thomas is the Founder and Creator of Caudalie, a top-selling beauty line in French Pharmacies where so many of the best beauty brands in France are sold. Since a year or two, Ms. Thomas, now NYC-based, has launched her brand in the U.S.

But though this young beauty visionary may spend her day-to-day in NYC, it is in Bordeaux where her heart, and the base of Caudalie Vinothérapie products, remain firmly rooted.

Caudalie Display, Greening Beauty

Working with Dr. Vercauteren of Bordeaux’s University of Pharmaceuticals, Ms. Thomas was intrigued by a claim he made to her during the 1993 grape harvest on her parents esteemed Bordeaux vineyard, “Do you know that you are throwing away treasures?” he asked her when he saw the grape skins and grape seeds being discarded.

She quickly learned, by listening to Dr. Vercauteren’s explanations, that grapeseeds and grape skins hold extraordinary deposits of anti-oxidants, in the form of polyphenols. And this is where Ms. Thomas showed true entrepreneurial genius, because from that bio-detritus, she created the luxury “Cosm-ethics” beauty care line and brand, Caudalie.

Caudalie owns three patents that help slow the signs of skin-aging:

1) Polyphenols from Grape-Seeds

“The most powerful anti-oxidants occurring in the vegetable world. They stop free radicals, which are the main cause of cutaneous ageing. They are the best anti-ageing shield for the skin.

2) Resveratrol from Grapevine Stalks

It gives the skin back its youthfulness and firmness. Harvard’s Department of Medicine identified Resveratrol as the most effective active ingredient for prolonging cellular life.

3) Viniferine from Grapevine Sap

The sap from grapevine stalks was used in the past to diminish dark spots and clarify the complexion of young women. Viniferine protects against dark spots and leaves your complexion incredibly radiant.

The Caudalie researchers have come up with a few more grape treasures which are formulated into the beauty line such as “organic grape water,” grape-seed oil, and Vinolevure®.

“There’s no miracle cure for skin ageing, there is a patent!” – Mathilde Thomas, Founder-Creator, Caudalie, Skincare Line

You can rest assured you are making an ethically beautiful choice with these products, too. None of the formulas are tested on animals and they ask that their suppliers do the same. They use the maximum amount of natural ingredients, that are both biodegradable and respect the environment, in their product lines. Her coined term of “Cosm-ethics,” refers to the fact that no animal ingredients, parabens, phenoxyethanol, phthalates, mineral oil, synthetic colorings or sodium laureth sulfate are used in any of the formulations or products.

There are also Caudalie Spas: In Bordeaux, France; NYC, New York; Versailles, France; and in Spain. Read the related article on Spa Caudalie in Greening Beauty.

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Collective Wellbeing: The ONLY 100% Carbon-Neutral Beauty Brand

4 Apr
Aginggroupsmall

Collective Wellbeing has joined Climate Action Reserve (CAR) and, in doing so, made an unprecedented and legally binding commitment to operate with a net-zero carbon footprint.  Very few consumer goods companies and NO other beauty brands have made such a commitment.

Launched in 2004, Collective Wellbeing is known for its super innovative and effective natural formulations for face, body and hair and an exceptional level of social responsibility (using green chemistry principals to guide formulation and production and donating a portion of all proceeds to deserving environmental non-profits).  Now, this visionary beauty brand leads once again.
CWB’s NEW Travel Kit, containing mini-sized versions of bestselling CWB products and enough clean energy credits to offset 2000 miles of air travel could be the perfect product for summer travel. Collective Wellbeing Founder is Jack Davies.
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There’s Lead in Your Lipstick

1 Apr

There’s Lead in Your Lipstick

Toxins in Our Everyday Body Care and How to Avoid Them

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ByGillian Deacon 

By the time she heads out the front door ready to begin her day, the modern woman has spritzed, sudsed and slathered herself in more than 127 different chemicals, many of them toxic.  Over 23,000 chemicals are registered for use in the Canadian market, and about 300 new ones are added to that list every year!  Many of the creams and potions we depend on are made with a staggering number of mystery chemicals, many of which are more toxic than beautifying.  The average woman eats a third of a pound of lipstick a year; that’s a lot of less-than-tasty chemicals to ingest!

 

So, how can you get smart at the cosmetics counter and go green from head to toe?  Eco-expert Gillian Deacon will help you identify and understand the toxins and preservatives that are bad for your body and damaging to the earth, including formaldehyde in deodorant, nail polish, soap, shampoo, and shaving cream; coal tar in hair dyes; lead in lipsticks; and many more.  Her tips will guide you through the minefield of the cosmetics aisle, helping you choose the best options to keep yourself looking fabulous while safeguarding your health.

 

Packed with over 200 healthy and eco-friendly personal care and beauty ideas, There’s Lead in Your Lipstick includes:

 

·         Toxins and preservatives to avoid

·         How to read ingredient labels

·         Fabulous products available to keep you fresh and glowing – the natural way

·         Luxurious and easy-to-make natural beauty recipes

·         Resource list

 

There’s Lead in Your Lipstick is an indispensable handbook of personal care choices that are sustainable, both for your health and the earth. 

 

Advance Praise for There’s Lead in Your Lipstick:

 

“Our toxic chemical exposure is nothing short of a calamity.  This book is essential to understanding what is at stake and how to make healthier choices every day – for the planet and for our families.”

          David Suzuki

“This book connects the reader to the issues and the solutions in an engaging way.  A can-do roadmap to a better and healthier life!”

          Dr. Rick Smith, Executive Director of Environmental Defence and bestselling author of Slow Death by Rubber Duck

“I love this book!  Thank you to Gillian Deacon for your bravery in writing such an honest and comprehensive book about what we need to know about the products we put on our bodies.”

          Stacy Malkan, co-founder of Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and author of Not Just a Pretty Face: The Ugly Side of the Beauty Industry

“This book just made me realize I’ve unknowingly been putting cancer-causing ingredients onto my head every day in my hair conditioner!  It’s also reaffirmed my love of cocoa butter.  A wake-up call to ease the chemical burdens on our bodies and our planet.”

          Sarah Harmer

“Gillian Deacon has given us all a generous gift: a comprehensive, exhaustive and timely guidebook to the Great Unwash.”

          Gord Downie

“Gill Deacon’s There’s Lead in Your Lipstick is a wake-up call for women of all ages to look beneath the gloss of the beauty industry.  Essential reading.”

–  Emily Haines

About the Author

Award-winning broadcaster and bestselling author Gill Deacon is one of Canada’s best known environmental advocates.  Gill hosted CBC television’s flagship daytime talk show, The Gill Deacon Show, and before that was host of @discovery.ca for five years on Discovery Channel Canada, and Discoveries This Week for Discovery Science Channel in the U.S.  Gill is the author and editor of Green For Life, a guide to making more environmental lifestyle choices; and co-founder of The Global Cooling Society, an event-driven organization that promotes sustainable lifestyle choices to young urban consumers.  Gill sits on the board of the Evergreen Foundation, and has served as a director of World Wildlife Fund Canada since 2002.  She lives in Toronto with her husband and their three sons.

9780143172505/344 pages/$26/OTPB

Publication Date: January 2011

Printed on Ancient Forest Friendly 100% recycled paper

Penguin Canada

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