MY NONTOXIC ANSWER TO ACNE AND AGING

So in a couple of months I will be 31, and we can cue the melancholy music and ominous tones cuz I’m not too thrilled about it. Am I being dramatic? Of course but needless to say 31 isn’t a super exciting age because you are officially in your thirties, I mean you aren’t even close to 29 anymore!! But embarking on your thirties means new adventures and an entirely new, powerful skincare routine to keep your youthful glow going, and to prevent the aging process. I am telling you ladies I have finally mastered an amazing skincare routine that is keeping my breakouts (yes I still get breakouts) at bay while combatting the aging process at the same time. Finding a regime that tackled both of my skin woes was becoming challenging for me because certain anti-aging products would cause me to breakout, but then some acne products I was using didn’t have any anti-aging benefits either. I really was determined to develop a regime that tackled both without using an army of product, and boy do I have some amazing finds to share with you free birds!! Get the deets of my full routine below!

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Erin’s Faces Clarifying Charcoal Cleanser: Erin’s Faces is a rather new line to me, and this is the first time trying her products and I am in LOVE!! This Clarifying Charcoal Cleanser has been a game changer for me when it comes to really giving my skin a deep cleaning. The main ingredients are charcoal, organic maple sugar, orange, cranberry, tea tree oil and lavender to name a few and the gel base makes your skin feel super clean but not stripped of it’s natural oils which I appreciate. If you are battling acne this is the cleanser for you. I use this morning and night along with my clarisonic or cleansing grains for exfoliation which is really important as well for acne prone skin. The price tag on this is kind of steep for a cleanser but you get a big 8 oz. bottle which will last you awhile for sure, a little goes a long way with this baby. Retail: $30 for 8 oz. find at http://www.erinsfaces.com.

Erin’s Faces Clarifying Serum: This magical elixir is seriously my new favorite find. Finding a serum that fights acne and aging simultaneously is sometimes near impossible but this gem does just that, while keeping my skin super soft and hydrated! With a “Think Dirty” rating of 0, this serum is packed with organic green and white teas, hyaluronic acid, organic aloe, tea tree oil and more and it really performs. My skin is smoother and clearer for sure, and it’s gentle enough to use twice a day, which I do. It also applies beautifully underneath makeup. I have just fallen completely in love with this brand as a whole and once you check out everything her website has to offer, you will be hooked too! Retail: $60 for 2 oz., find at http://www.erinsfaces.com

True Botanicals Pure Radiance Oil, Clear: So my beloved True Botanicals have renamed all of their beautiful products but have kept the same high performance, luxurious nontoxic ingredients we all know and love! This oil is formerly known as their “Balancing Facial Oil” and this is my third bottle of it. This truly is liquid gold and I know I have featured this oil many times on the blog but I just can’t get enough. I get compliments on my skin all of the time and I know this oil is to thank. I no longer bother with face creams because this oil does what face creams do not. This oil strengthens the skin’s barrier function, calms inflammation, fights free radical damage, and hydrates much deeper then the surface skin cells. I gently apply this oil after cleansing and applying my serum and vitamin C treatment at night. For a dewy effect, you can apply a few drops on skin before makeup in the morning also. Standout ingredients for me are organic hemp seed, grape seed and pumpkin seed oils. If you are battling acne and aging, this oil is the KEY to youth, I’m telling you free birds!! Retail: $110 for 2 oz., find at http://www.truebotanicals.com.

True Botanicals Vitamin C Booster: This is a newer product I have incorporated into my routine but now an essential one. This is the freshest form of Vitamin C you will find for topical use. It is in powder form and made to be mixed in with a serum. This booster stimulates collagen production, firms and repairs skin, fights wrinkles, and brightens aging skin. I like to mix 2-3 shakes of this with my Erin’s Faces Clarifying Serum I mentioned above until dissolved, then apply all over my face and neck. As we age, Vitamin C should be an essential component in our skincare routines. I use this at night only because you should always avoid sun exposure when you have topical vitamin c on your face, it makes it ultra sensitive!! You will notice an immediate different in your skin tone after using this, I highly highly recommend adding this gem to your anti-aging routine!! Retail: $90 for 0.49 oz., find at http://www.truebotanicals.com.

I hope these recommendations help you navigate a new skincare regime to conquer those skin woes we all know and hate too well. As an esthetician I take my skincare extremely seriously and only write about products I know and love, and that are safe and healthy for your skin. If you have any questions about skincare in general or these products featured don’t hesitate to contact me! Happy weekend free birds!!

 

 

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TRUE BOTANICALS SUMMER GIVEAWAY!!!

With it being the Fourth of July today I thought it would be fitting for me to do a quick little post on the importance of antioxidants in your skincare routine after sun exposure AND True Botanicals and I have teamed up once again for an amazing summertime giveaway for you guys so stick around for details on that!! So I think we are all very well-informed about the importance of sun protection and chemical free sunscreens, but how much are you’re focusing on your skin AFTER the sun?? It’s absolutely imperative that you incorporate a treatment that is packed full of antioxidants to help repair sun damage and brighten aging skin, and True Botanicals Pacific Topical Vitamin C Treatment does just that!

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Pacific Topical Vitamin C Treatment contains the freshest form of I-absorbic acid (Vitamin C) and since our only source comes from our diet, a topical treatment is essential so the skin doesn’t get neglected. This works in combo with ferulic acid and doubles the photo protection of your skin when used together. Lastly, licorice root is a powerful plant antioxidant that provides anti-inflammatory benefits and brightens and lightens your skin, I have always been a huge fan of licorice root!! The result of these powerhouse antioxidants equals firmer, brighter skin and fewer wrinkles! This is an absolute MUST have in your rotation in the summertime, because protection just isn’t enough, you must repair!! Retail: $65 http://www.truebotanicals.com

Active ingredients: l-ascorbic acid, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, ferulic acid. Inactive ingredient: tapioca starch

Like I mentioned above, True Botanicals and I have teamed up for one our readers and followers to win a Pacific Topical Vitamin C Treatment ($65 value!). Head on over to my Instagram @freelovebeauty for all of the details and to enter today!! I hope you all have a wonderful and safe Fourth of July free birds!

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INTRODUCING MY VERY OWN, FREE LOVE BEAUTY OILS!!!

I’m literally bursting with excitement right now, I mean I wish I could really explain just how hard I have been working on this. It really explains my absence from the blog itself and why I go MIA for periods of time on social media. I have truly poured everything into developing my products and my business, along with balancing raising two amazing kids and waitressing in a restaurant 4 days a week!! I’m totally exhausted but it’s a good exhausted that’s fulfilling!! Just to kind of recap you guys I’ve been a licensed esthetician for about 5 years now, and have always had a true passion for skincare and makeup. But it wasn’t until my son got sick when he was two that made me change my thinking and really start questioning ingredients in our skin and body products, leaving me to start making my own concoctions. You can read more about my little dude’s illness here. (Btw, he’s doing amazing!) Anyways I have spent a few years now blending oils and working with different ingredients, sourcing out of my mind trying to find the absolute best of the best! Now that I feel like I have FINALLY made my best potions, I can share them with all of my amazing readers and followers, and it feels SO good. The photos below are from an amazing photo shoot I did with my good friend Ericka of Ericka G Photography in Palm Springs and I really wanted to showcase my oils in my favorite environment. I absolutely love the way the gleam in the somewhat dreary desert light!

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MOONCHILD RESTORATIVE OIL: I honestly made this gem well over a year ago now specifically for my daughter. When she was six months old I noticed she was developing really bad eczema on her thighs and arms and I had literally tried everything from coconut oil to nontoxic lotions and creams and nothing worked. I thought screw it I’m going to make my own blend and with my background in skincare and all the knowledge I developed about oils I already knew what oils I wanted to use. You can read all about Moonchild ingredients here! This potion calmed her skin almost immediately and I was so pleased I started using it for other things. Moonchild is highly concentrated so a little goes a long way and it’s a MAJOR multitasker, I specifically made my potions to be blended with your fellow skin and beauty products to give them an added boost! Some of my favorite ways to use Moonchild is adding few drops to damp hair after an evening shower, mixing with my body lotion before bedtime for the calming lavender scent and major antioxidant properties of organic pomegranate oil. I still to this day massage it on my daughter’s thighs and arms before bedtime. It’s truly the last thing I put on before I sleep, I rub a few drops on my hands and massage gently into my neck and decolette to prevent aging and I also massage it into my nail beds to keep them healthy!! The possibilities are endless with this and it’s an absolute MUST on my nightstand! Retail: $28, you can purchase here. 

SUNCHILD ILLUMINATING OIL: My obsession with the glow this baby gives is serious, I mean this honey golden shade is the business!! It took me quite awhile to find and perfect the in between shade of bronze and gold that would not only obviously give a good sparkle, but also slightly even out the skin tone by adding a slight layer of color to the skin. Now keep in mind this potion is also highly concentrated with a TON of sparkle and is best used with other products such as lotions, balms, oils, etc. Don’t get me wrong you can use it on its own but the sparkle level will be high. My favorite way to use this is mixing with my lotion which give the perrrrrrfect honey bronzy glow, adding a drop or two to my beauty balm for a dewy bronzy highlighter, or adding a few drops to damp hair for a golden sheen. The possibilities are endless; just mix, blend or add Sunchild wherever your want a healthy, California girl-type of honey golden glow!!! You can read all about Sunchild ingredients here.  Retail: $28, you can purchase here.

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I handcraft my potions with SO much peace and love and I hope you all feel that when you use them. As for right now there are only two but come fall I will be adding two more oils to my collection so definitely stay tuned for that! My vision for these was to keep them relatively simple but the highest quality, which truly represents who I am in everyday life. I will also be doing special tutorials on the blog of my favorite ways to use my potions, there are so many more exciting things to come! A HUGE thank you to all of my family, friends, and readers who continue to support and motivate me, that is why I love my green beauty community- SO much love!!! xoxo

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SUMMER GLOW WITH BLISSOMA SKINCARE

Summer is pretty much here in SoCal and in my world that means making sure my skin has that extra glow to it! Getting that perfect glow isn’t just about slapping on that perfect highlighter and calling it a day, it’s about really maintaining your skin and prepping it correctly for the new season, and in my book that all begins with exfoliation. In my past I’ve always relied solely on my Clarisonic to exfoliate, but as soon as Blissoma Skincare sent me their Glow Good Earth Exfoliant Powder I just couldn’t get enough! It truly is the most natural way to exfoliate your skin, as they use high performance ingredients like organic oat kernel powder, bentonite, and organic brown rice ground up into a grainy powder. This gem is an absolute must in your summer rotation!

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So you simply mix with a bit of water or your favorite cleanser and gently massage into skin to get the blood circulating, slough off the dead skin and really open up those pores!! Skin will be slightly red after you rinse but thats a good thing, it means the powder is doing its job and thats what is going to bring the glow! I recommend this powder for all skin types except broken skin or cystic acne because that can aggravate it further, but this is amazing for congested skin and especially those dealing with blackheads!! You can use this 2-3 times a week but I honestly use it once a day, I’m a huge advocate of keeping your skin exfoliated correctly so your face oils and creams can hydrate efficiently, which makes for a perfect canvas for makeup application. This gem retails for $40 and you can shop all Blissoma products at http://www.blissoma.com. You can also check out more Blissoma reviews of mine here.

To celebrate the start of summer Blissoma is having their biggest sale of the year and are offering my followers and readers a major discount code, all you have to do is sign up here today, to receive the code via email and shop away!!

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Meeting Mandee of Enkel Nontoxic Luxuries

Recently I had the absolute pleasure of reconnecting with an old beauty school friend who is also paving the way for herself in the green beauty community. Mandee Gutierrez is a real life boss lady and the mastermind behind Enkel Nontoxic Luxuries, Orange County’s newest and most adorable brick and mortar shop full of the most amazing options of nontoxic beauty goods!! Mandee is extremely hard working and such an inspiration to me as a fellow female entrepreneur that I thought sitting her down for an in depth interview so my readers could get the inside scoop to her success was imperative!! Mandee and I go way back and it’s honestly been such a fun and exciting time hanging out and working together again. She is so down to earth, so knowledgable and kind and I can’t wait for you all to see the exciting things we have in store for you in the near future!!

FLB: Give us a quick little personal background on yourself! hubby? kids? dogs? Lol

MG: I have been married to my super supportive husband for five years now! Time has just flown by! Together we have a very full, all boy house! Two step-sons, baby boy twins and my wiener dog, Bosco. When people ask, they are shocked that we are hoping to expand on that one day. I need a little princess in my life, that or I am going to have to settle for another puppy, but a female one this time! Our lives are hectic but family is what it is all about and the chaos makes for great memories!

FLB: What experience and background do you have in the beauty industry?

MG: I have had a passion for products and makeup my whole life and decided to change my career path in 2009. I became a licensed esthetician in January of 2010 and been working in salons and with products since then.

FLB: I think it’s so amazing how you and I have reconnected after all these years following similar passions in the green beauty industry. What first inspired you to start Enkel Nontoxic Luxuries?

MG: Yes! Who know we would separately embark on journeys so similar without even knowing it? I am so happy to reconnect and share our experiences!

Well, background information. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease in 2011. Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune thyroid disorder, and as you know the thyroid is responsible for regulating our hormones. It is not the most detrimental diagnoses I could get but it is definitely a frustrating one because as women we can have a difficult time with our hormones regardless. Although it was under control with daily medication, I still never felt “normal.” I changed my diet, was very careful about what I put in my body, and exercised regularly but how I felt wasn’t good enough. In speaking to clients, I discovered that a lot of people have thyroid issues, but why? Why is it so common? I decided to do some research and that is when I discovered just how bad the products are that we are putting on our skin (our largest organ, that doesn’t have a filtration system to keep the bad stuff out). I then sought out products but had to purchase items online or drive to Los Angeles since there wasn’t anything available locally. After money wasted on products I didn’t love, or shades that didn’t work for me, I realized that there was a need in Orange County for some green beauty. I decided to start Enkel so that I could share my experiences and make safer products available to my local community.

FLB: You have done an amazing job at selecting a wide range of nontoxic beauty brands at Enkel, can you tell readers some of the brands you carry? Why is brand selection so important to you?

MG: Gosh, we are up to about thirty different brands with more on the way! We carry some very small brands and some very large ones. I think it is important to support small business but also we want some of the industry’s most popular brands as well to have everything under one roof. Brand selection is key and so is variety, which is why we have something for every aspect of one’s beauty routine such as makeup, hair care, nail care, body wash, etc. We try to find products that are so effective, that it takes the worry out of whether or not they are going to be comparable to what they are using now. We want products that look, feel, and act like what our client’s are using but without all of the harmful ingredients.

FLB: What are you top five must-have products from your shop?!

MG: Piperwai because lets face it, no one wants to stink and this stuff works great for men and women.

Fitglow Sea Toning Mist – it’s calming and so refreshing!

Suntegrity Primer with SPF, a daily must whether I am wearing make up or not.

Indie Lee Brightening cleanser, which has totally helped even out my skin tone and feels as beautiful as the packaging.

Aila Base/Top coat (that’s two products but you have to use them together!). My mani’s never lasted so long!

FLB: You really are the jack of all trades in the beauty industry and I see that you now offer organic spray tans at Enkel!! Can you tell us a little more about that?? A true organic tan is actually really hard to find!!

MG: Ha! In our local area there aren’t a lot of people offering spray tans, and even the ones that claim to be organic do not disclose their ingredients. I just saw a need and luckily we already carried Eco Tan so it only made sense to offer a brand of solution that we already, know, trust, and love! Its great to be able to offer clients body washes and Eco Tan’s Winter Skin to extend the spray tan as well.

FLB: What is the best advice you could give an up and coming “boss lady” entrepreneur wanting to embark on starting her own business?

MG: Just do it! No risk means no reward and you’ll never know until you try. You are the one that has to create your happiness and a life that you love so do what makes you happy! I never in a million years saw myself as an entrepreneur but I have followed my heart and this is where it led me.

FLB: Coffe or tea?

MG: Both! Did I mention I have twins? I need all of the help I can get! I’m more coffee in the morning, tea at night.

FLB: Top five music artists/bands of all time?!!

MG: Bob Marley, Tupac, Journey, Usher, Sugarland

FLB: Where do you see Enkel at one year from now?

MG: We want to just continue offering the best of green beauty by continually adding new products to our store. I hope that Enkel can continue to grow so that we can expand not only in locations, but services as well.

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I hope you all enjoyed getting to know Mandee!! And be sure to check out Enkel Nontoxic Luxuries in the Orange County area for all of your nontoxic beauty essentials!! If you aren’t in the SoCal area, you can also shop all of their products at http://www.enkelnontoxicluxuries.com

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