Autumn Product Obsessions 2016

As the weather cools, I'm craving a moody lip color, a melty cleanser, a buttery-rich eye cream, and a lotion that uses botanical power to reduce season-transitioning inflammation. Ready to meet these natural and organic superstars? Here's what's in my purse and gathered in my bathroom this fall...

Goop by Juice Beauty Luminous Melting Cleanser, $90

No exaggeration- the first time I tried this rich, buttery cleansing balm, I loved its feel so much that I gave myself a spontaneous facial. By principle, I no longer use cleansers that strip my skin of moisture, but even in a lineup of creamy natural cleansers, this product sets itself apart. It's easy to get addicted the balm-like formula, as well as the routine of scooping out a little dab and feeling it melt as you massage it into your skin. I find it most satisfying to use when I'm wearing mascara, liner, and the whole nine yards, since it effortlesly breaks down makeup. The 79% organic formula includes almond, olive, jojoba, and coconut oils, plus shea and cocoa butters that cleanse by breaking down dirt and oils and ushering them away without leaving you parched. Of course, the experience isn't complete without the organic cleansing cloth that's included to help you fully rinse and gently exfoliate (you'll end with a nice layer of moisture remaining on your skin).

Bottega Organica Illuminate Eye Contour Cream, $145

(Also available in the October 2016 Beauty Heroes Discovery Box— a $35 monthly subscription)

What better way to greet colder weather than with a buttery-rich eye cream that delivers a stunning range of powerful healers and hydrators for your delicate eye area? I was thrilled to receive this Bottega Organica Illuminate Eye Contour Cream in my October Beauty Heroes Discovery box, and even more impressed with the product when I took a thorough look at its ingredient list. Bottega Organica, which creates 'farm-to-skin luxury' products, sources the majority of its certified organic ingredients (think fresh herbs, cold-pressed olive oil, and botanicals like echinacea, geranium, and the exotic prawn sage) from an organic farm in Italy and an organic farm in Upstate New York. The result is an eye cream that is a dream to apply, and leaves your eye area calmer, brighter, and more hydrated, naturally. To sign up for the monthly Beauty Heroes Discovery box (my absolute favorite mail day each month!), check out the Beauty Heroes site.

100% Pure Lip Caramel in Truffle, $25

Lip color is one of those products that I urge all of my clients to choose with a discerning eye, since we regularly ingest its ingredients. This gorgeous rust-tinged rose 'lip caramel' from 100% Pure is a perfect example of a lip color that's safe to ingest, but doesn't compromise one bit on color or feel. It goes on with a lip gloss applicator, but has none of the heavy, sticky residue that you feel with most glosses. This lip color is so highly pigmented and light that it reminds me more of a stain, which I absolutely love! After testing the Truffle Lip Caramel (which gets its deep hue from fruit, root, and achiote seed natural pigments), I want the entire shade range. 100% Pure created a winner with this formula!

 

 

 

Tata Harper Clarifying Moisturizer, $105

I've been a fan of Tata Harper's products since her very early days. As she has slowly and carefully added to her line, she continues to surpass expectations with gorgeous formulas that work. Her latest launch, Clarifying Moisturizer, amps up the calming, healing, and balancing ingredients in a season when lots of us struggle with transitional breakouts and slowed cell turnover. Whether your skin is blemish-prone all year, or autumn and winter are trouble times, this lightweight moisturizer is a perfect choice. You won't worry about moisture that's too rich for easily-clogged pores, and you won't be stuck with dryness and irritation because you skimped on hydration. Superstar ingredients in this formula include a plant sugar extract that helps feed probiotic (read: blemish-preventing) bacteria on your skin's surface, and a blend of healing fruit extracts and oils that calm redness and fight free radical damage. The only thing left to mention is the heavenly botanical scent produced by all of these natural ingredients—a Tata signature.

On My Skin in February...SW Basics

I love a good makeover story. Hollywood has done them to pieces, so has TLC, but they don't happen that often in the beauty industry. When they do, I get excited.

Over the past few years, I've watched one company in particular blossom from Sprout Wellness, to Sprout, to its grown-up and gorgeous new incarnation, SW Basics of Brooklyn. I first found this company while writing an article for the beauty pages of Boho magazine back in 2010. I thought the all-over cream was to die for. A year later, I was introduced to their bolder, hipper identity, Sprout. The lip balm was instantly a purse staple. Today the brand has added even more new products, and come of age as SW Basics of Brooklyn. And it fits. Vogue, W mag, Whole Living (RIP), and New York mag agree.

Founder Adina Grigore has a serious talent for mixing a few simple ingredients into pure elegance. Using these products makes you wonder why complicated beauty products dominate the market. More isn't always more, and SW Basics is proof that beauty can be effective and simple at the same time.

Four things I love about SW Basics products:

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Gwyneth's Detox Juices: Her Secrets To Great Skin?

gwyneth juices

I've heard plenty of buzz about Gwyneth Paltrow's affinity for detoxing. This girl seems to love a good cleanse and the healthy juices that come with it! As I imagine it, Gwyneth downs healthy green juices (kale, celery, spinach, etc.) in between photo shoots, workouts, shopping excursions- whatever glamorous activities make up her day. And her skin- in addition to her internal health and immunity- is reaping the benefits, most notably from the pH-balancing alkalinity of these green foods. A body in balance is directly linked to clear, radiant skin!

In her recent Goop newsletter, Gwyneth writes about cleansing with juices from Organic Avenue in NYC. She says of the Organic Avenue 5 Day Fast, "The result was pretty amazing and the juices and smoothies (esp. the coconut mylk and the cacao smoothie) were so delicious that I imbibe them whenever I’m in NYC."

Lucky for us, Gwyneth's newsletter offers recipes for a few of her favorite Organic Avenue juices from as well. Here's one of the best:

MellowLOVE Green Juice (see below for specific skin benefits):

1/2 bunch spinach

1/2 bunch celery

1/2 large cucumber

1 head romaine lettuce

1/3 bunch fresh parsley

Pinch of Himalayan salt

Juice all ingredients and add salt to make 2 servings.

What do these ingredients do for the skin? Here's the quick explanation:

SPINACH: protects skin with alpha-lipoic acid, an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant compound, plus skin nutrients like vitamin C and beta carotene.

CELERY: calms inflammation, regulates body fluids and balances acidity in the body.

CUCUMBER: a diuretic (for this reason, cucumbers are a staple of models) with ample minerals for healthy skin & nails, as well as skin-soothing properties.

ROMAINE LETTUCE: a great source of skin-strengthening minerals like manganese, chromium, potassium, as well as vitamins A, C and K.

PARSLEY: a free radical-fighting food with three times as much vitamin C as an orange and twice as much iron as spinach!

HIMALAYAN SALT: yes, this one has benefits too! Himalayan salt is  packed with minerals, including 84 essential body elements. Table salt, sadly, is stripped of this nutrition and can actually contribute to cellulite and health problems.