Cruelty Free

Antonym – Quattro Eyeshadow, Eye Pencil, and Lipstick Pencil

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It’s a given for regular readers of The Amazing Blog that we love natural and organic makeup and skin care products. Although, many people also associate organic products with lighter pigments and less staying power than conventional products that may use synthetic ingredients. That’s why we were thrilled to try makeup range from Antonym, an organic brand certified natural and organic by Ecocert Greenlife loved by makeup artists.

 As a well-known Miami based makeup artist herself, Valerie “Val” Giraud set out in 2010 to create makeup products and brushes that have organic and natural ingredients and are cruelty-free and gentle enough for sensitive skin. In keeping with creating a clean makeup line, Giraud wanted to ensure the products had high performance—something she thought organic makeup products at the time were lacking. She believes that ‘natural makeup doesn’t have to mean a natural look’ and we can attest to this statement after using these three glam products.

The first two items we tested were the Quattro Eyeshadow in Croisette and the Certified Natural Eye Pencil Noir. The eyeshadows come in four shades (Moon, Salmon, Bark and Black) to use separately or together to create a sultry smoky eye. These colours are not only intense and long-lasting but have a smooth and velvety finish to brighten any eye colour. One of the key ingredients of the Quattro Eyeshadow is the natural mineral mica, making this product ideal for sensitive eyes because it will not irritate them. To pair with the eyeshadow palette is their Certified Natural Eye Pencil Noir. It is preservative-free and dermatologically tested, so it is safe to use on your delicate waterline. Organic ingredients like marula and jojoba oil additionally moisturise and nourish eyes. However, what we love about this liner is that it applies rich colour so smoothly and is water resistant while containing ingredients that won’t have you rubbing at your eyes all night. We loved smudging this liner into our lash line and waterline on top of the Quattro palette for an evening look.

Of course, the last product to complete any makeup look is lipstick. We found that the Certified Natural Lipstick Pencil Koral is the ideal product to keep in your handbag for the summer. It comes in a convenient pencil and is easy to apply without a mirror, perfect for on-the-go touch ups before lunch in Hyde Park. Koral is a bright orange colour that looks gorgeous with a tan and has a glossy finish for a dewy but not sweaty look this summer. What also makes this lipstick perfect for the hot and humid weather is that it will also keep your lips hydrated with sunflower oil and shea butter. The formula also includes vitamin C and E to nourish lips while leaving a long-lasting and waterproof colour. We recommend using this lipstick with the two eye products to really tie your look together or build up the colour for a bold statement.

You can purchase the Natural Lipstick Pencil here only on the USA website (for now) for $17 and the Quattro Eyeshadow, which comes in a sturdy bamboo case with a dual-sided brush, here for £37. The Natural Eye Pencil includes a conveniently detachable sharpener on one end and you can purchase it here for £18.

Zuii Organic – Certified Organic Flora Gradual Tan Body Lotion and Self Tanning Foam

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In the summer, at The Amazing Blog we not only like to sport a healthy tan that looks like we’ve just returned from some exotic clime, but we also don’t want to spend hours roasting in the sun risking getting skin cancer! We’re big fans of self tan products particularly if they are certified organic. Enter the 2019 Beauty Shortlist award winning Australian brand Zuii Organic’s  with their Certified Organic Flora Gradual Tan Body Lotion and Self Tanning Foam (in both Dark and Medium). Both products offer a great way to get a sunless tan, plus their organic ingredients give you a fabulous golden and glowing skin.

The Australian brand was founded in the 90s by beautician Rose Bessey, who wanted to create “organic products that have you looking incredible, while your skin benefits from wearing them”. This mission led her to create products that are all vegan and cruelty-free and have certified organic ingredients. The company’s tagline ‘wear flowers on your face’ stems from Zuii Organic using real flowers like roses, sunflowers, and jasmine in its products, which have lots of skin benefits and of course smell delicious.

The first product we tried was the Gradual Tan Body Lotion. Infused with organic bamboo juice, raw cacao, shea butter, and sunflower oil; the lotion hydrates and softens the skin so much so that you can use it alone as a body moisturiser. However, be advised that it does not contain sunscreen if you go out during the day. These nourishing ingredients leave your skin glowy while the product creates a gradual tan on your skin. We were very impressed with the colour that it gave, as it was extremely natural looking and is customisable by you. After using the product 1-2 times per day (morning and evening in our case) the gradual colour begins to emerge on your skin, and what we liked was that you can build the product up, until you achieve your desired tan. Have no fear, this lotion will not leave your bed sheets an ugly colour the next day and has a light citrus scent. Also it was long lasting and faded evenly.

The second product we tried was the Certified Organic FloraSelf Tanning Foam which they very kindly sent us both their Dark and Medium versions, but it also comes in four shades: Light, Medium, Dark and Ultra Dark. Having had basal carcinomas, I’m a regular all year around self-tanner, so my choice was the Dark version. I was impressed with the ease of application and performance.. I am extremely fussy about my tanning products and this truly gave me just the darker sun-kissed colour that I like! Unlike the lotion, this foam has a colour guide, so as you apply you have an instant tan that when dry will last for a week or more. The unique foam texture is lightweight and dries quickly. However, make sure you apply this product on evenly with a mitt to avoid streaks. The formula has bamboo juice, raw cacao, and grape skin, and doesn’t leave you feeling sticky. With its smooth application and rich colour, we can see why it is a winner achieving awards from Pure Beauty Global Awards Finalist too. It is perfect for achieving an optimal tan, with minimal effort. Exfoliate your skin before applying the lotion or foam. You can purchase the Gradual Tan Body Lotion (250ml) here for £31.50 and Self Tanning Foam (200ml) here for £36. Certainly one of my #amazingfinds for this summer and I can’t wait to try more from Zuii Organics

Pretty Athletic – Cool Down: Purifying Gel Cleanser

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Daily workouts are a must for all of us at The Amazing Blog. Whether it be a quick jog in the morning or a Pilates session, we’re all for the energy and health-boosting effects exercising give us. However, we’re less of a fan of the red, sweaty look and breakouts that come with it. In this day and age do we really have to choose between having amazing skin or an amazing bod? We want work out friendly skincare to target our exercise-related skincare needs. That’s where Pretty Athletic’s Cool Down: Purifying Gel Cleanser completely changed our skincare game.

While there are many sunscreens and moisturisers that market themselves as a ‘sport’ product, U.K. based skincare brand Pretty Athletic has been one of the first beauty companies to formulate specific products for the modern, active woman. Besides targeting exercise-specific skincare needs, all Pretty Athletic products are almost 100 % natural and vegan. After trying their Cool Down: Purifying Gel Cleanser, we can honestly say that we have seen a difference in our skin after a workout.

Unlike many other facial cleansers, Pretty Athletic’s Cool Down: Purifying Gel Cleanser doesn’t leave skin feeling dry and stripped. The gel cleanser was not only formulated to target ‘exercise-related breakouts’ but also to nourish your skin in the process. Infused natural ingredients like aloe vera, cucumber and chamomile, ensure red, sweaty skin is soothed and void of any oil and dirt that can clog pores during a heavy workout session. Added hyaluronic acid also helps decrease oiliness while hydrating skin. After a workout, directly apply a penny-sized amount of the cleanser to dry skin. Then after thirty seconds of massaging, rinse off for a clean, hydrated complexion. For £18 you can purchase a bottle of the 100 ml bottle on the Pretty Athletic website here.

KIERIN NYC – Santal Sky

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Although The Amazing Blog loves London and we will likely never leave, New York City is one of our favourite cities in the world. Walking through the streets of Manhattan amidst the American hustle and bustle make you feel alive and young. Yet within the city that never sleeps, there are moments of ultimate peace and serenity. Flights to New York are expensive, but the next best option is to bring the atmosphere of the city to you with KIERIN NYC’s Santal Sky fragrance.

Inspired by the vibrant and metropolitan lifestyle of New Yorkers, KIERIN NYC has also embodied New York’s inclusive nature by creating perfumes that can appeal to all ages, genders, ethnicities, and nationalities. The company invites people ‘to be inspired, not defined or confined, by fragrance’. This ethos produced Santal Sky’s clean and unique scent designed for the modern urban individual. For this perfume, French perfumer Mathieu Nardin combined sandalwood, vetiver plant, and cardamom and saffron spices. The scent has a very strong earth and woodsy aroma from the sandalwood. However, what makes you think twice about Santal Sky are its spicy after notes. This fragrance is completely its own in this regard, and the spiciness leaves you mesmerised by the smell long after you’ve sprayed it. The overall ambience of Santal Sky is a sexy and mature scent that lasts all night while you’re getting fancy cocktails at a bar with the city lights behind you.

Despite this, it doesn’t smell too old to use in your 20’s and comes in a sturdy, stylish matte white bottle that is recyclable. KIERIN NYC has a ‘clean & conscious’ model for its brand, so all of its products are made with sustainable packaging and ethically sourced ingredients to help other communities as well as our own. Santal Sky is also cruelty-free, vegan, paraben and phthalate free, and hypoallergenic. This perfume not only has an eco-friendly mindset but smells exceptional and will bring some of the ‘New York State of Mind’ to London.

You can purchase Santal Sky (50ml) here for £65

The Kind Planet Company – Power Balm

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To keep up with our minimalism goals this spring at The Amazing Blog, that also means using less products that currently clutter in our dressing tables. Besides doing a bit of tidying up around your flat, fewer beauty products mean fewer minutes spent getting ready and more time enjoying the gorgeous warm weather. We have found the perfect product that to do just that. The Power Balm is an all-in-one organic product that will clear your counters of masks, moisturisers, and lip balms.

One of the nine ‘power ingredients’ in the Power Balm is red palm oil, which is used for skin care and eaten as a superfood in West Africa. Palm oil has gotten negative press lately because it is in almost everything we consume (foods, cosmetics, cleaning products) and it causes devastating destruction to ecosystems. We know that, as does The Kind Planet Company, so they’ve come up with a sustainable and kind solution. Working with Sierra Leonean women, Kind Planet’s red palm oil is handpicked and certified by the Rainforest Alliance to ensure animal habitats are not destroyed in the collection process. The company’s shea butter ingredient follows a similar process in Ghana. At the core of Kind Planet and its Power Balm is giving power to its customers and female workers as well as kindness to the environment.

The Power Balm has a mix of red palm oil, other natural plant oils, shea butter, and vegan wax to nourish your body while providing protection and long-lasting moisture to your skin. Key ingredients in the formula in addition to red palm oil, which is rich in antioxidants and hydrates your skin, are jojoba oil (removes excess dirt and oil), mandarin essential oil (brightens and diminishes scars), and rosehip oil (reduces redness). These oils combine to create a fresh and aromatic scent. The balm is useful on all skin types as a cleansing tool, face or body moisturiser, face mask, lip or beard balm, and even a highlighter. Our personal favourite is using it as a hand moisturiser at night because it is incredibly soft and hydrating, great for nails and doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy. Due to its versatility and 100 per cent organic formula, we predict the Power Balm could be the next multipurpose staple.

Power Balm also does not have any preservatives, parabens, synthetic fragrances, petrolatum, animal by-products, or animal testing. You can purchase the Power Balm (50ml) here for £19.50 (postage and packaging included in the price). Five per cent of the sales go to Planet + People Power charities.