Summer Product Obsessions

what's been on my vanity, tucked in my purse AND stocking my bathroom cabinet during this SUNNY SUMMER SEASON? Here are the natural and organic products that have become my absolute favorites for beauty early this summer...

Axiology Lipstick in Attitude, $26

I'm loving this bright, uplifting shade of pink! Axiology totally hits the mark with this gorgeous natural lipstick, from its sleek brushed gold tube that clicks into place, to the ever-so-slightly iridescent raspberry pigment. Of course the best part is all of the high quality natural butters, oils and waxes that go into the vegan formula. They feel ultra-moisturizing, and deliver smooth, even color. I may not be ready to branch out to the brand's purple Desire shade, but Attitude is sure to be my go-to color for awhile.

 

Gemstone Organics Face Creme in Rose Quartz, $37

I was so intrigued when I first heard about Gemstone Organics. While I don't pretend to know the first thing about gemstones, I find them physically beautiful, and their presence uplifting. I wondered, could their qualities influence the look, feel and results of a facial creme?  I first tried the brand's Jade creme, which actually ended up being a bit too powerful for my delicate skin type. Gemstone Organics partner Sara Clement sagely advised that I give the Rose Quartz creme a try instead, and the experience was a perfect fit. Rose Quartz, intended to soothe and brighten skin while reducing stress and boosting happiness, has been healing and nourishing to my skin, and gentle while still possessing power and potency. I've been using it sparingly, on days when my skin feels in need of an extra moisture infusion. I'd still recommend the Jade cream for dry yet blemish-prone types, since the strong presence of thyme is known to target acne! And when it comes to gemstones, I must say that I am captivated by the hands-on love and ceremony that the brand's partners devote to the creation of their gemstone essences— it most assuredly reflects in the quality of their cremes overall.

Beautycounter Tint Skin, $38

Anyone else find it reeaally hard to come by a perfect natural foundation? Tint Skin comes close to perfect for me, and the fact that it's available in eight skin tone shades makes it a product I can recommend to the vast majority of my clients. (Nobody likes to be left out!) The formula provides a considerable amount of coverage— enough that I can mix it with moisturizer to stretch the small tube just a little farther when I only want a light layer of makeup on my skin. So far, Tint Skin is my top pick for natural foundation that rivals conventional lines— without unwanted ingredients like PEGs, parabens, and chemical sunscreens.

PiperWai Natural Deodorant, $13

I first met my Philly neighbor and co-founder of PiperWai Jess Edelstein when she pulled up to my house on her scooter, toting a bag of deodorant samples for one of my Beauty Food Supper Clubs. Jess is a pavement-pounding real estate agent by day, but she and co-founder Sarah Ribner put more energy and passion into PiperWai than most brands get on a full-time schedule. This team of childhood friends truly believes in their deodorant, and rightly so. It works, thanks to activated charcoal, milk of magnesia and nearly a dozen bacteria-busting essential oils. Now I'm not a product diva, but I don't love that I have to apply it with my hands (the extra 30 seconds it takes to leave my 1 year-old unattended and run to the bathroom to wash up leaves ample opportunity for him to get into trouble).  But a stick applicator may be coming soon. The brand recently celebrated a fully-funded Indegogo campaign, and developing an applicator is one of their major goals. Stay tuned, but if you're in the market for a natural deodorant, this is a must-try today!

Cosmedix Reflect SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen, $45

I have no problem slathering a thick sunscreen all over my face when I'm at the beach, but that approach just doesn't work for me everyday. I was thrilled to find this super-light liquid mineral sunscreen from Cosmedix. It comes in a spray pump, but don't plan on misting it all over your face (too much potential to breathe it in— avoid spraying sunscreen over your face or body). Instead, follow the package directions and spray a few pumps into the palm of your hand, then pat it on. The ingredients are astonishingly simple: the base is micronized titanium dioxide and water, with a few key antioxidants added. On days when I might otherwise forgo sun protection in an effort to streamline my routine, I reach for this quick-applying liquid as a practical solution.

Note: while testing this product, I've been researching whether or not micronized titanium dioxide is truly safe protection. While many sources, like the EWG, vote for zinc oxide as the number one best form of sun protection, titanium is a close second. Both titanium and zinc "provide strong sun protection with few health concerns," and "don't break down in the sun," according to the EWG. And in its micronized form, titanium dioxide appears to be safe. There does exist a 1996 study that raised concerns on nano materials in sunscreen, but subsequent studies have not substantiated those concerns. For the time being, this feels like safe, wearable protection to me!

"EWG carefully studied all scientific publications and government safety assessments on the risk of nanoparticle penetration from zinc and titanium in sunscreen. The current weight of evidence suggests that these nanoparticles do not penetrate the skin, diminishing concerns for their adverse effects for sunscreen users."