Five June Favorites and a Quick Update

I have finally come to terms with the fact that my life may not get back to the comfortable circumstances in which this blog was created. Story time! For those who don’t know, I started blogging shortly after my dad passed away in 2012. He suffered a heart attack the day before I had to leave home (in Italy) at the end of a lovely family vacation. He and I were very close, and we spent at least an hour chatting on the phone every day (this was before FaceTime was invented). He was gone so quickly, and I was so depressed.

My husband and I had just moved to a small town in South Carolina where we had no friends and family, and circumstances ($$$) forced me to take a break from college (yes–I have been trying to graduate from college for what seems like forever, and stuff keeps happening to where I can’t seem to complete it). I spent all my spare time (and most of my nights/early mornings) studying and researching health topics that were relevant to me–nutrition, food allergies, intolerances, environmental issues that affect our health, and so on.

I also enjoyed reading beauty blogs and watching beauty videos on Youtube, (that was sort of my “fun” Internet time), but I could not quite figure out how to replace all my beauty products with some that would not make me feel uncomfortable–and sick. I desperately needed fragrance-free products (I was super-sensitive to fragrances/perfumes, and would suffer terrible migraines when using fragranced items) and I also wanted to get rid of the other products that I was no longer feeling comfortable using (nano-containing powders, chemical sunscreens, etc.). Back then there weren’t as nearly as many green beauty options as there are today. I shopped for beauty products at the health food store, mostly. Beauty stores only offered a few “paraben-free” options, and that was about it. So I started my (anonymous) blog as a place for me to share my findings. I didn’t expect it to grow as fast as it did, (at one point I was ranking in the most popular Bloglovin’ beauty blogs) and to get featured on other amazing blogs–or even magazines! It simply was one of my favorite hobbies, and I did it because I genuinely liked it.

After one year of regular posting, however, so much started to happen (serious health & family issues, along with random life problems–this was even before my husband was diagnosed with cancer) to where I was no longer able to post as frequently. I decided to take a quick break and to wait for the right time to get back, but month after month, year after year, my life only got more busy and complicated. I received (and continue to receive to this date) so many emails and messages of people who tell me how much they miss my posts and my Youtube videos, and I am very sorry if I have disappointed you–I would have never stopped posting if I had the choice.

I have now realized and accepted that the perfect circumstances may never return, so rather than quitting  something that I enjoy and do with passion, I have decided to ease back into it and just work with what I have. Maybe one day I will have time and opportunities to bring the vision I have for this blog to life–maybe I won’t. However, I will continue to share what I consider worth-reading–whether it’s a beauty product that rocks my world, my experience with a health issue that other people may be dealing with, or a bomb recipe that is going to make you and yours fall in love with healthy eating. I may not always post perfect hair & makeup pictures or the most exquisitely edited lifestyle images, because time is still an issue, but I am going to keep it as always–100% authentic, and hopefully interesting and/or helpful to you.

With all that being said, (you deserve the warmest hug if you made it this far), I wanted to share a few of  my June beauty favorites. I will review some of them (because makeup needs to be swatched and worn in order to be fully appreciated), but if you have any questions in the meanwhile, just drop a comment below.

  • RMS Beauty Champagne Rosé Luminizer. It’s not a surprise, at this point, that RMS has the recipe for the perfect cream highlighter, and once again, she was able to put dewy, juicy skin into a jar. The consistency of the new RMS Beauty luminizer is more similar to the Living Luminizer than the Magic Luminizer (the first one is more glossy and translucent, while the second one has more pigment and grip on the skin). The color, however, has a beautiful, opalescent pink hue. If you own the Living Luminizer and enjoy it, you likely don’t need to rush to get the Champagne Rosé because they are similar and give a similar effect. However, once you run out of the LL, you may want to consider trying the Champagne Rosé next, because it is gawgeous. Currently only available at Sephora online (here). Just look at this swatch below *insert swooning emoji*.

  • Rahua Beauty Defining Hair Spray. Sometimes I still get questions about this hair spray because I shared my first impressions in a Youtube video (you can watch it here) and never really talked about it after that video. Well, this hair spray still is my go-to product for when I dust-off my curling wand and add a few loose curls into my hair (which has been happening more often lately since my hair has gotten longer). It helps to hold the curls longer, give my hair a bit of texture, and it does not feel sticky like most of the other “natural” hair sprays I tried. It’s not as easy to brush off as the L’Oreal Elnett, but it is the best I have found with more clean ingredients. No aerosol, and no obnoxious scent. If you like a medium hold, you should try it. Available here.
  • Tata Harper Very Bronzing*. I’m not sure if they are currently reformulating this product, but I have noticed that it is no longer available at all Tata Harper retailers (but you can find it here). I have been loving this cream bronzer and I really hope that they won’t change anything about it. I received it in a PR box almost a year ago, but I was testing another bronzer at that time, so I didn’t actually got to use until a few months ago. The color looks very natural on my skin (like a real tan color) and is buildable. It’s a warm, non-orange tan color (probably best for light-medium skin with yellow/golden/olive undertones). It’s easy to sheer out if you use a heavy hand or build up to intensify it. I apply it with this Teri Miyahira #3 vegan contour brush, and let me just say that if you use cream products for contouring, this brush is really fabulous for both defining and blending (I am a bit of a brush geek, so trust).

  • John Masters Organics Lavender & Avocado Intensive Conditioner. Best conditioner I have ever used, hands down. It makes my hair silky soft, but it does not weigh it down. I also love its light, lavender scent. I am already on tube #3, and plan to repurchase. I typically get it at Pharmaca (here) because they often have 15% and 20% off sales, (and it’s on sale now–July 2017).
  • Henné Organics Luxury Lip Tints*. Dulcis in fundo, the newly launched Henné Organics tinted lip balms are everything I hoped they’d be. All the moisturizing goodness of the classic Henné lip balm tube, plus some really pretty, flattering hues. I was very lucky to receive the two shades I would have picked myself: Bare, the prettiest pinky-peachy nude, which is what I have been wearing every single day since I got it, and Intrigue, a sheer red. Available at the Henné Organics and at Integrity Botanicals (where you can save 10% on your first order). This is a close up of Bare. Isn’t  it the perfect nude color?!!

Lastly, a brief FAQ:

Are you still using the Kypris face sunscreen?

  • No, I am no longer using the Kypris Pot of Shade Heliotropic*. Although it is a pretty comfortable physical sunscreen (not too greasy and heavy like most), I stopped reaching for it when Summer started and the temperatures got higher, because it literally melts off my face. I am using the ILIA Moondance Powder with spf 20 on top of whatever I wear on my face. I can re-apply it throughout the day and does not sweat off like all the other sunscreens I have used.

How is your husband doing?

  • First off, thanks to everyone who has been asking about him. He’s feeling a bit better. The arthritic feeling he had in his legs recently went away. He also had a condition in which his hands would turn ice cold in the early evening–but only his hands. This has recently cleared up as well. We will be repeating a series of tests very soon to check on his progress. He was diagnosed with stage II-B Nodular Lymphocyte-Predominant/Hodgkin’s Lymphoma(NLP/HL) a few months ago. You can read a bit more about it here.

Are you going to write an updated skincare routine?

  • Yes, it might be my next post, or it will be up soon anyway :)

Thank you for reading. I will talk to you soon, ciao!

*PR/gifted sample

 

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  • Adamary

    I recently found your blog and I was sad it wasn’t being updated but I didn’t know what was going on with your life. All I have to say is thank you so much for taking the time to write this post, with everything you’re going through I hope you never feel pressured to update it as often as you would were it not for the circumstances, let it bring you joy amidst the bad things you may encounter in life, your readers will be waiting for you. Sending you lots of love xxx.

  • Such a lovely post Lilly……Wishing you strength to deal with everything’s going on in your life. x

  • Guilly

    I am sorry to hear about all your life’s challenges. I wondered where you went. I just wanted to say that I’ve always enjoyed your blog and all your ideas and of course the products to talk about. I found it very informative because I also am fragrance sensitive. Good luck with all your challenges. You have a fan club out here and we all support you. Sending love and healing.

  • Elisa

    Happy to see a new post from you. Struggling with health issues is never any fun. Reading your blog and researching “cleaner” products and lifestyle choices has been a nice way to zone out and feel like I’m doing something positive for myself. Wishing you and yours the very best <3

  • Kara

    A beautifully authentic and heartfelt post – as always, Lilly. I’m deeply sorry for the difficulties facing you and your family in recent days and years, but delighted to hear you’re not giving up on your hobby and passion. Eagerly awaiting each new post you’re able to write.