Rarely do I—the picky, perfectionistic, detail-oriented, idealistic, Virgo—discover a company that I approve of on all levels. But I think I might have found one, for the time being anyway, and I want to spread the word about why I love them so much. They are not paying me, and they do not know who I am, but when I am excited about something, I talk about it!
I discovered their Rose Hibiscus Hydrating Face Mist accidentally when I was window shopping at Urban Outfitters. I was with my twin sister at the time, and I was going through a very difficult dating debacle. It was one of those relationship situations where you feel like the end is coming, but you do not want it to come, and it has not yet come, but you know in your gut that conclusion is inevitable, and you are just waiting in a desperate, clinging, painful agony. I say this only because I normally do not wander around stores and buy random things that I do not need. This goddess-on-a-budget actually makes it a point to not ever do that—ever. But my senses were weakened and I was attempting to fill my aching heart wounds with some therapeutic retail indulgence. So, I absentmindedly picked up this bottle—Herbivore Botanicals products have beautiful packaging and this one was hard to miss—and determined that, “Yes, I will feel better and I will be happier if this product is in my life.” I honestly did not even know what this product was for, and at first glance, it seemed to fall under the beauty product category of “completely unnecessary, yet totally awesome.” Normally, I walk away from products like this, but I liked how it looked, I liked how it smelled, and I liked the unnecessary-yet-awesome idea of it. So, I bought it. And it has kind of been changing my life for the better—at least in terms of my looks. That agonizing relationship ended, and obviously, no beauty product can assist with that kind of thing.
You do not have to go to Urban Outfitters to buy this. I normally buy it at Sephora, or you can order it online from the fully-functional AND highly beautiful Herbivore Botanicals website.
I do not normally care much about the personal history of the founders of a company, although I suppose the facts are nice to know. I am more interested in a company’s mission, their perspective about their products, and whether or not the founders seem to be authentic in their motivations. This company seems to be pretty genuine, and that matters to me very much. Herbivore Botanicals was started by a husband and wife couple, working out of their kitchen in Seattle, Washington. These days, cute and well-meaning couples from places like Seattle, or upstate New York, or Vermont, or Boulder, who start companies like this, seem to be a dime a dozen. So, none of these superficial details matter very much to me, although it is nice.
What I love most about this company, is what I find—or rather, do not find—when I read the label of each product. I am a big label reader—when it comes to food, I am much less concerned about calories, and more concerned about what kind of strange chemical invasion is taking place within my food. Instead of cataloging calories, I pore over the list of ingredients and look for recognizable words and phrases, rather than foreign, 23-letter, biochemical-compound-like letter groupings. I remember a nutritionist on television once said, “When you are shopping for ice cream, look for ingredients that sound like they came from a farm—eggs, milk, cream, strawberries, etc.” This kind of ice cream might contain more fat, but is healthier in the long run because it is natural and not chemically altered in any way.
[FYI, she chose Breyers Natural Vanilla, which has: milk, cream, sugar, vegetable gum (a thickener), and natural flavor. Have a look at the ingredients in most of the ice creams in your grocery store. It is HARD to find one that has only identifiable ingredients. Turkey Hill All Natural Vanilla Bean (Pennsylvania area ice cream brand, that I of course prefer over all other brands) is another winner when it comes to pure and farmy ingredients: nonfat milk, cream, sugar, vanilla, vanilla bean.]
When I look at the ingredients in any Herbivore Botanicals product, I recognize and understand the words in every bullet point listed below:
Full list of ingredients for Rose Hibiscus Hydrating Face Mist:
- Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Water
- Rosa Damascena (Rose) Flower Water
- Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Flower Water
- Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filterate
- Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract
- Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Water
- Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract
- Coccinia Indica Fruit Extract (Neer Sikkappu Red)
Image From @herbivorebotanicals
Honestly, it is almost unheard of in this day and age, to find beauty products without at least ONE strange chemically-sounding ingredient. However, ALL of these products are pure, and earthy, and delicate, and safe. This is important to me, almost more than anything else, when it comes to the substances that I choose to put on my skin.
Our skin is basically an instantaneous passageway into our bloodstream. The second we connect the surface of our skin with any product, the material enters our bloodstream within seconds. And once it enters our bloodstream, it inevitably reaches our organs after filtering through our entire system. Therefore, purity of ingredients matter very much to me.
THE PROOF IS IN THE PUDDING
However, I have fallen victim to getting overly jazzed about an “all natural” product, loving the idea of it, and loving where it comes from, only to find that when I actually use the product, I am embarrassingly demystified and disappointed by the lackluster and often ineffective results. It makes no difference where the product comes from and how wholesome a company’s intentions remain, if the product is crapola in a box.
Herbivore Botanicals = PURE INGREDIENTS + UNDENIABLY EFFECTIVE RESULTS
I turn 38 years old TODAY, and believe me when I tell you that I am getting more compliments on my skin than I have ever gotten before—ever, in my life—and I have always had pretty nice skin for the most part. There were some dicey phases here and there o’er the years, but I survived them intact. I have also been getting some jaw-dropping reactions when someone who does not know me very well, discovers my age. This is major, people, so take notes!
The older I get, the more interest I have in looking “younger” rather than more “beautiful,” although of course I prefer both. And this goddess is determined to maintain a youthful beauty the natural way. And if that means that I look start to look older and less attractive than my female counterparts because I am only using natural products, and refuse to consider surgery, Botox, and/or other unnatural age-defying treatments, so be it. But I believe very deeply in natural beauty, so when I find a product line that serves this belief AND works wonders on my skin, I feel very excited and supported. I have been using the Rose Hibiscus spray regularly, twice a day, for months, and I attribute this influx of compliments to this product, since this is the only element that is new to my regimen.
Birthday smoothie with my twin sister #nofilter
BRIGHTEN PINEAPPLE + GEMSTONE MASK
I just received this new product, Brighten Pineapple + Gemstone Mask, for my birthday, and used it for the first time last night. Another method I use to determine whether or not I can incorporate a new skin care product into my life, is if I have an outbreak after the first or second use. My skin is so sensitive and it tells me immediately when it is unhappy. This product is smooth, light, and very clean—I mentioned in another previous post, BEAUTIFUL FACE, PART II: THE DEW FACTOR, that I normally hate traditional masks because they are messy and take forever to rinse off. I was worried that this “mask” would be the same, but it was so fresh feeling and easy to use. The consistency is rather gel-like, so applying the mask to my skin almost feels like I am covering my face with a silky moisturizer. The mask does not harden and/or crack, but rather dries slowly and leaves a thin layer of clear film over my skin. After 20 minutes, all I need to do is rinse it off with warm water—this takes about 30 seconds, as opposed to other masks that take sometimes several minutes and often require a wash cloth and a full-blown washing of my sink once I am through. Afterwards, I spray my face with my Rose Hibiscus Spray and then apply some moisturizing oil (from another company…although Herbivore’s facial oils are next on my list—yes, I am now fully obsessed with, and addicted to their products).
THE BOTTOM LINE
I am not going to lie. This company’s prices are a bit out of this Goddess’s comfort zone. However, I find their quality to be worth the price, so I find ways to procure the items I desire, one way or another—by hook or by crook. For this mask, I waited several months until my birthday rolled around and asked for it with fingers crossed. It is $48 which is not obnoxious at all. But their Orchid Facial Oil, i.e. my next purchase, is $64. So, the cost is most definitely out of my preferred range of $0-$0, but you get what you pay for and this cost is completely do-able for any goddess-on-a-modess budget.
I leave you with one final photo of this pre-birthday, bed-time dazed, mild-energied, post-pineapple-masked, contented goddess.