Archive for the ‘Bubble and Bee’ Category

I fully am expecting Stephanie, from Bubble and Bee to take over the world, sometime soon.   I noticed that she had come out with a facial care line, and I have been dying to try it.  And with going through a major winter depression, I decided that the time was now, and I treated myself to some new goodies.  I didn’t treat myself to enough goodies, but that’s neither here nor there.

My face is… weird (insert bad joke here).  It’s never really consistent.  It’s sensitive.  It isn’t sensitive.  It’s dry.  It’s oily.  It’s flaky.  It’s itchy.  It’s shiny.   I wish it would pick something and stick with it.   So when I went to choose a facial cleanser to try out I made a faux pas in not trying out the sample pack.  Instead I chose the Pineapple facial cleanser for normal skin.  I don’t know what I was thinking.  That all of those things equal an average round about to normal skin?  Yeah, my logic isn’t so logical sometimes.

This stuff is awesome.  It cleaned as it should but it was a little too drying for my particular skin and I chalk this up to winter, and my skin just being a jerk right now.   It cleaned really well and didn’t leave my face overly dry.   I would say if you’re in the middle of a bitterly cold and raw winter, and your skin is throwing a tantrum about it, go for something for sensitive skin. Bubble and Bee has two other facial cleansers including a gentle Honey & Rosehip cleanser which is suited for more dry and sensitive skin.

What I love about the facial cleanser is that lathers nicely.  I’m not a “cleanser” kind of girl, rather, more of a face wash kind of girl.  I need a little lather in order to get the road dirt off.   It smells awesome and of course I never even so much as flinch with a worry when buying Bubble and Bee products.   The list of ingredients is always short and it’s never anything that I can’t pronounce.   I always feel as if I’m treating my skin to the best that nature has to offer when I buy from them.

You can purchase any of Bubble and Bee’s facial cleansers right from BubbleandBee.com, or if you’re taking a vacation to Utah, go and visit her store and see all the other goodies Stephanie has to offer.

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I’m admitting, right here and right now, that I do not make my own deodorant.  Statia does, and her and her husband use it often.  But I have not gone down that road personally.  I have had success using several brands of natural deodorants and with some time and patience, I do not need to rely on a stick of Dove for security.  In fact the last time I did, I smelled within a few hours.  Not sure why, but that was the last time I used a traditional deodorant.

I will also admit that not every natural deodorant works for me, and that’s not because the product doesn’t work or is faulty.  But sometimes, certain recipes don’t mesh with your body chemistry.  You have to find what works best for YOU.

In order for me to consider a deodorant safe, it must be free of the following ingredients:

Aluminum:  Research is suggesting that aluminum may be linked to Alzheimer’s Disease  and some aluminum ingredients may be hormone disruptors to boot. Propylene Glycol, Parabens, Phthalates, Triclosan (believe it or not some “deodorants claiming they are natural contain Triclosan) and all the other usual suspects that I scan for in approved products.  This list is in alphabetical order and is not comprehensive so if you know a brand you think belongs here, let me know and I’ll verify it and add it to the list.

Best In Show

Runner Up’s (Better but not great)

  • Jason Natural Cosmetics Deodorant – This works well as a deodorant but the first ingredient listed is Propylene Glycol.  I have used this as my safety net deodorant when I needed extra protection but my armpits started peeling recently so I have since stopped using it.
  • Tom’s of Maine Natural Deodorant – Same deal.  Uses Propylene Glycol as their main ingredient.  My parents both use this with great success but I had a not effective relationship with it myself and never went back.
  • Kiss My Face Active Enzyme Deodorant – Not chemical free and contains Phenoxyethanol.
  • Earth Science Natural Deodorant – Not chemical free and main ingredient is Propylene Glycol.

I’ve chosen not to list crystal deodorant stones and sprays because of the possible unintentional aluminum content.  To read more about that please visit Stephanie Greenwood’s blog for more information.  If you disagree, that’s fine. I’m sure I’ll get some crap about not including it but…tough noogies.

DIY: If you’re into making things yourself, please check out our recipe for natural deodorant!

I don’t wear a ton of make up.  I know there are parts of the country where women tend to wear more make up than others (*cough* Long Island *cough* and I can say that because I grew up there) and I do wear some… enough to make myself acceptable for public consumption.  I do like my girlie must haves and here is whats banging around in my make up bag:

Foundation: I don’t wear a lot of it and I never really did.  But as I’m getting older I have rosacea and some flaws and I just need a light overall cover to make me happy.  I am using mineral foundation which I have recently read to be less than great due to breathing in particles.  But I loathe liquid foundation.  Hate it.  So I hold my breath and hope I don’t get some funky lung disease from it.  My favorite is Alima Pure Mineral Satin Matte foundation after switching from Bare Minerals when I learned that it contained Bismuth Oxychloride which can be an irritant to rosacea sufferers.

I also use SukiColor Liquid Formula Concealer in Flax (which I can’t find on their website right now) for spot treating under eye circles, zits or whatever weirdness shows up. Blends well and has a more respectable ingredients list than most commercial liquid make up.

Blush: I hide from the sun so much so that I need an extra boost (I wear hats and sunglasses all the time) so I use Alima Pure  Luminous Shimmer Blush in DianthusDr Hauschka makes a nice blush bronzer too but the cost difference is amazing.  $15 for Alima vs $30+ its an easy choice for me.

Eyes: NVEY Eco Organic Eye Shadow Palette in Palette 3.  I had a palette of this before which I had gotten as a gift and it lasted me forever.  So when I was digging the last of it out I decided it was a worthy investment.  It’s $60.  Yeah I know.  But it lasted me well over a year to a year and a half.  So I figure I’m spending that over a course of time on different ones anyway and this is organic.  So I splurge.  I also have a small Dr. Hauschka Eye Shadow Solo in Shimmering Ivory.  But I may try the 4 color palettes they have next time instead of the NVEY.  $44 vs $60 on that scale.

Eye Liner: I have a basic black eye liner from Sephora. Nothing green or safe about it.  I need to find a better one.

Mascara: I use Tarte Lash Hugger Eco-Friendly Natural Mascara.  Tarte uses better ingredients than most and avoids things like parabens, phthalates and mineral oils and is in a recycled tube.  It works great… can’t complain.  I tried out one of the “natural” brands at CVS and it was awful so I’ll stick with this.

Lips: My favorite topic!  I don’t wear lipstick.  It’s a pretty rare occasion if I do.  I am a lip balm kind of girl and when I get dressed to go out (haha) I am a fan of lip gloss.  Although since I started greening my make up I haven’t found too many lip glosses that do it for me. I have a million lip balms including: Badger Lip Balm in just abut every flavor but I love Tangerine and Lavender Orange, Bubble & Bee Lip Balm in both Coconut Lime and Rude Raspberry (which is Certified Organic now), a Burt’s Bees Radiance Lip Shimmer as well as a Burt’s Bees Super Shiny Lip Gloss in Sweet Pink, LuSa Organics lip balm (love) and an Earth Mama Angel Baby Lip Balm which I use at night.

Nails: I know we did a whole round up of safe nail polish but to be very honest – I hate almost all of them.  They don’t stay on and yes I used them while I was pregnant if at all but my vanity is at stake here so I ave been using Zoya Polishes for my mani pedis.  Zoya is Formaldehyde, Toluene and DBP Free so I feel somewhat better using them.

Anyone have any eye liner or lip gloss recommendations?  Hope you enjoyed the peek into my bathroom!

I had no idea people would love to know what products I have as much as they did, so here’s what’s on my bathroom counter top and a few things from inside “The Drawer”:

Deodorant: I use a couple deodorants.  I have found that switching my deodorant from day to day lends to the effectiveness of natural deodorants. But they don’t all work for me so I rely on three to do the job. The first is Bubble & Bee Geranium Lime Pit Putty.  Love this one and when it runs out I’m going to get their Geranium Lime Pit Putty with Baking Soda.  I also use Soapwalla’s Cream Deodorant which I like to use on days when I take a more decadent shower… I don’t know why exactly but just go with it.  I also use Weleda’s Rose Deodorant Spray.  I use the Weleda mainly when I take a shower at night.  The alcohol seems like it should be a bacteria fighter so in my weird brain I think “ok this will keep the stinky away all night and then I can put on regular deodorant in the morning”. I have no idea if that is even true or remotely accurate but it makes sense in my brain. I’ve also been making friends with Miessence products (Ely Organics) and one I do like is the Miessence Deodorant.   If you prefer roll on deodorants this might be the one for you. If you are new to natural deodorants here’s a primer to get you started.

Face: Depending on the time of day I am using two face creams.  This is one area I struggle because as I mentioned, I have very sensitive skin, plus rosacea, plus aging, plus occasional breakouts.  So finding something gentle and effective is really hard for me.  For night I am trying out Yes to Cucumbers Facial Hydrating Lotion and it seems to do ok.  I also have a pack of Yes to Cucumbers Facial Towelettes which I thought would be good for quick sweat wipes or lazy nights to remove make up.  But they kind of burn a little so I think they’ll get tossed. For daytime, its Burts Bees Radiance Day Lotion with SPF 15. It contains phenoxyethanol though so I’m on the lookout for something better. When I last visited the dermotogolist they told me to use Aveeno and I did for a while until I saw what was in it.  I’m constantly trying to find a good replacement.  Have yet to find something I really love.  I’m open to your suggestions ladies.

Eyes: I haven’t used an eye cream much since I had to stop using my beloved Clinique eye cream which was my favorite thing on the planet. I have a small bottle of John Masters Organics Firming Eye Gel but I often forget to use it.

Body: This also depends on the shower.  Showers where I have time for a scrub allow me to skip lotions and potions.  I towel off and get dressed. Quick showers tend to leave me wanting a little extra moisture so I opt for body oils.  While I do like the occasional rub down with a lotion or body butter, oils don’t require any processing or chemical emulsifyers.  And if you find a great body oil it can double as perfume. Right now I use Soapwalla’s Luxurious Body Oil.  It’s light enough for day use and smells lovely.  I also have Burt’s Bees Vitamin E Bath & Body Oil which has a great citrus scent but it’s pretty heavy and greasy so I haven’t used it in a while.  Also making appearances on my counter is The Body Deli Coconut Body Souffle, Weleda Seabuckthorn Body Lotion, and Badger Balm Vanilla Coconut Body Balm (I use this primarily at night).

Hair: This is definitely one area where I need improvement.  It’s sad really. I do own several natural hair products but I shamefully admit that I use one or two NOT natural hair products.  I have one or two natural ones I do like.  One is John Masters Organics Sea Mist Sea Salt Spray.  I use this for curly hair days to give my curls that “fresh off the beach” wind look.  It works great.  The other is Giovanni Frizz Be Gone which is great for straight hair days.  It seals and protects my hair before being tortured by a flat iron.  My shame lies in my use of John Freida’s Fresh Curlz.  I also use Aveda’s Curl Cream which is like the best hair stuff ever for curly hair. See? Not perfect but trying.

Part 3: You get a peek into my make up bag!

Someone asked me recently if I would publish a list of products I use.  I was hesitant because like you, I am a work in progress and I sometimes think people expect me to have it all figured out.  I don’t, but I try. So here it goes…

Giovanni Colorflage Beautifully Blonde Shampoo: Ok this stuff isn’t nirvana when it comes to ingredients, it contains phenoxythanol and a few other questionable items but its better than a paraben, phthalate ridden shampoo and it works really well.  I spend a fortune on my toxic highlights (hey I’m vain ok? I like being blond!) and the last thing I want to do is ruin my expensive ‘do with lame shampoo.  This claims to protect from fading and enhance blonds.  So far I’m just really happy with the cleaning power and the softness.

Giovanni Organics 50:50 Balanced Conditioner: Again, not perfect but better than many.  Leaves my hair smooth and soft and works just as well as traditional conditioners.  I also like John Masters Organics Lavender & Avocado Intensive Conditioner but right now I can’t afford a $22 conditioner.  I love it, and when I can swing a bottle I’ll get it but let’s face it, it’s a fortune.  Giovanni is available at Target and only costs about $7-9 bucks.  I can handle that.

Tilvee  Shea Butter Bap Soap (Face):  I have very sensitive skin and mild rosacea and a dermatologist told me to use anti-bacterial Cetaphil.  Well, I’m not comfortable with the ingredients (fragrance, PEG’s and Triclosan as the anti-bacterial agent) so I set out to find a better soap that had few ingredients.  Tilvee was the winner/  I use their Shea Butter bar for dry and sensitive skin and it works great.  Plus no gross ingredients.

BAR SOAP:  Ok this is where my obsession is and it’s evident by the bar soap in my shower. I’ll just list them all. Kiss My Face Sudz C-Weed Sweet Orange and Hemp – I love citrus scents and this doesn’t disappoint. Bubble & Bee Coconut Lime Soap – another awesome one. Dr Bronner’s Lavender Bar Soap – cheap, works and available at Target, Kroger, etc.  One type of soap I don’t have right now that I love is bar soap from LuSa Organics. I like the Ylang ylang and Lavender Goats Milk Soap but they have a ton of choices for every preference.  All natural and they’re purely awesome. I love their sugar scrubs and their lip balms too… actually I love everything they make and need to place an order soon. Worth every penny.  There are tons of natural soaps to pick from – this is the easiest thing to change when going natural.

Weleda Birch Body Scrub: I got this on a whim and reviewed it but it doesn’t get much play in my shower.  It smells nice and I think if I tried it with a loofah it might work better but then its a body wash not a scrub so it gets neglected.  Read my review here.

Rocky Mountain Soap Company Bamboo Body Scrub: I just reviewed this and really love it.  I’ve been using it often and I am buttery soft as a result. I love scrubs and although I don’t always have time to use them, when I do they have to be awesome.  This one is worth of my time for sure.

Next time I’ll give you the inside look at my after-shower body care and perhaps a peek into my make up bag!

clsoapAs you all know we just loooooooooooove Bubble & Bee products.  We’re their #1 fan. Stephanie of Bubble & Bee is so increditbly knowledgeable about chemicals and ingredients that we go right to her first if we ever need an ingredient scrutinized.  Her products, as a result of her knowledge, are so pure and safe I hate using anything else. 

Years ago before I learned about skin care and the hazards of all the chemicals I was dumping into my body every day I was a Bath & Body Works Junkie.  I admit it.  You walk in there and everything looks so tempting and relaxing.  I owned almost the entire True Blue line and always stocked up on my favorite scent: Coconut Lime Verbena.  When I learned more about the ingredients, I sadly tossed all my BBW products and searched for safer ones.  I never did find a good replacement to my beloved Coconut Lime Verbena… until NOW.

COCONUT-&-LIME--SMALL-PICThanks to Stephanie’s constant product development, she has added a lovely Organic Coconut Lime Soap to her collection as well as a Coconut Lime LIP BALM.  Its as if she read my mind.  I loved her Coconut Lime lotion stick already and wished there were more.  And now there is.  Her soap smells devine and lathers wonderfully.  I feel so tropical after a shower.  And I can keep the feeling all day with her delictable Coconut Lime lip balm… which if you have ever tried her lip balms, they rock.  This one is no exception.  It’s my new favorite lip balm flavor (and you know how much I adore my lip balms) and I want to hug it and squeeze it call it George.  Ok no but I do carry it everywhere.  It even tastes sweet!

Get Some! Thanks Stephanie for all your great products and new scents!  Shop for Bubble & Bee products on her website BubbleandBee.com!  Don’t forget to visit her Chemical of the Day Blog where she answers reader questions about ingredients.

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I have switched to natural deodorant recently, with no real trouble.  However, I have yet to find anything that cuts the mustard for my manly husband, especially in the Texas summer!  Not to mention most of the alternatives I have found smell rather girly.  Any suggestions?  Do your husbands use natural deodorants, and have they found one they can count on?

We are shamed to say it, but our husbands are pretty stubborn when it comes to switching their products over to natural products.   My husband was pretty annoyed when I tried to switch his toothpaste over and now secretly looks forward to business trips because I know he keeps a secret stash of Colgate in his toiletries bag.  So he still uses his trusty old Axe.  You can lead a horse to water and all of that (although, I did get him to switch his chemically enhanced shampoo to Dr. Bronner’s.  Baby steps).

However, we do tell people that it definitely takes time to switch over to have it work properly, and men are no exception.  We did post some tips on switching over, you no doubt have read (and I’ve also tried to drill into my husband’s head as well), but they bear reposting:

Be patient. You’ll need at least 2 weeks to adjust (and sometimes longer), so if you go a couple days on a new deodorant and you smell this could mean your body is still ridding itself of toxins.  You might have to try a brand or two to find the right one for your body chemistry too, so give it some time.

Exfoliate. Its a good idea to GENTLY exfoliate your armpits once in a while to remove any dead skin blocking your sweat glands and pores.  Use a really soft washcloth and gently massage the area.  Don’t use scrubs or salts as this might damage the delicate skin of your armpits.

Sweat! The reason deodorant makers put Aluminum in their product is to prevent you from sweating.  There is a major problem with this in that you are supposed to sweat, sweating is your body’s way of ridding itself from toxins and impurities.   Once your body is used to not having antiperspirant it can actually regulate your sweating.  Since switching to Weleda I have not noticed being “wet” unless I am huffing and puffing on the treadmill, in which case who cares.  What matters is I don’t SMELL like sweat.

And of course, to add another:

Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate:  The more water you consume, the less likely you are to smell as water flushes toxins out of your system.

And of course, diet also has a play.  If you’re going to eat stinky foods, they have to come out somehow, and going to the bathroom isn’t the only way your body excretes waste.  Which is why you tend to smell like an 18 year old brewery after a night of drinking heavily.   Garlic, onions, red meat.  It’ll also come out in your pores as well.   Which makes me wonder if I’d smell like vanilla cupcakes if I lived on a diet of them…. hmmm food for thought…

As for brands, we personally like both Bubble and Bee’s Pit Putty (they have other varieties as well) and Weleda.  Weleda’s deodorant is more of an alcohol base which might help curb odors for your husband, better than Bubble and Bee, and I know my husband has said that the original Bubble and Bee is a little bit too feminine smelling for him.   Weleda makes a Sage variety that isn’t girly smelling.   I’ve used both Bubble and Bee and Weleda doing yard work in the hot summer sun and while, yes, I did sweat, I didn’t smell at all.  I would say to buy a couple of varieties, find what works and then rotate based on your needs.  Guys tend to be simpler with their body care needs, but sometimes, they need to go the extra mile to find a product that works for them too.

We need YOUR questions.  Submit them to “Dear LovelyMama” today!

bbraspvanilla1 You all probably know by now, how much we LOVE Bubble and Bee’s products.   I have quite a few of their products around my house and I love all of them.  Especially anything that’s lime coconut.  It smells fabulous.    Even my husband likes their stuff, particularly their solid lotions, like the lotion stick and the lotion bar.  It really helps heal his hands, which tend to split a lot in the cold weather.

I had put in a request for an actual “liquid” lotion with Stephanie, which thankfully was already in the works.  I love the solids, I use them every day, but I do like the actual ability to spread lotion on my skin.

Introducing Body Butta.  This stuff is fantastic.  The smell is heavenly.  I was lucky to be able to try out the raspberry vanilla, which smells like dessert, and looks like cake frosting.   I’ve had a hard time refraining from digging my finger in it and eating it (because that’s what you do with frosting, right?).   And I’ve just gotten word from Stephanie that you actually COULD eat it if you wanted to, and that it doesn’t taste bad.  I think I’ll refrain from being the one to experiment, but, you know if you want to give it a shot, go ahead (and let me know if I need to get a spoon).  The ingredients are all natural of course,  and include coconut oil, raspberry extract, vanilla extract, sweet almond oil and a few more.  Best of all, not one single ingredient on this list is water, so you’re getting a nice thick lotion that will leave your skin feeling soft and silky, not only to dry out again after 6 minutes.

The body butta has a shelf life of 10 months from date of purchase.  Another thing that is a GOOD thing.  Your lotion shouldn’t outlive you.

Get it: You can order Body Butta directly from bubbleandbee.com, and as an extra LovelyMama bonus, you can take 15% off your order using the coupon code “hotmama03“, which can also be combined with free shipping on orders over $65.  That’s a great deal!  Code expires 6/1/09.

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bblotionstickNow that winter is full upon us (though technically, the first day of winter is next week), my skin has decided to revolt.   There is nothing really that seems to be helping my skin.  It’s itchy, dry, flaky and scaly.  I’d blame it on pregnancy hormones, but my poor toddler’s skin is much the same way.   We try to keep as hydrated and sealed as possible, but we’re fighting a losing battle.

So instead of trying to win, we’re just hoping to keep the playing field even.  I have a heavy artillery of lotions, bars, lip balms and other things to help with our winter skin.

One of my musts this winter, is our Bubble and Bee lotion stick.  I love it because it’s a stick, not a tube, so you get more for less and a little goes a long way.  It’s also very portable and inexpensive.  So I can stock up and keep them in my handbag, a diaper bag, and just about every other corner of my home.  It’s great for all over the skin, but especially great for sealing your hands while you’re out and about.

If you’ve read here or over at SafeMama for any length of time, you’ll know that we LOVE Bubble and Bee’s products.   They’re always up front about their ingredients, because they have nothing to hide.  They’re safe for both kids and adults alike.  And another thing I love is that you have other options aside of lavender, such as orange, lime coconut (I’m addicted to this scent, I can’t even begin to tell you how good it smells), and chai, to name a few.

Is your skin suffering like ours?  Head over to Stephanie’s blog and read her tips for helping your skin through winter.

Get It: You can get all of Bubble and Bee’s awesome products directly online and enjoy 15% off your entire order using code wintermom3

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A few months ago, while doing one of my many searches for safe skincare for myself,  I discovered an awesome company called Bubble and Bee Organics.  One thing I love about Bubble and Bee is that they always use organic ingredients when possible, and better yet, they never use synthetic ingredients, ever.

I love all of the products that I’ve tried.   Especially their Pit Putty.  I raved about Pit Putty over at SafeMama a few months ago and I stand by that review.  Pit Putty is hands down the best deodorant I’ve tried.  It’s very soft and powdery.  And a little goes a long way.  Once I used it properly, I never had a problem with white stains on my shirt and it lasts, even in the hot sun.  Something I tested profusely when first tried it out (I was the girl with her face in her armpits all day).

This is a deodorant, which you shouldn’t confuse with an antiperspirant.  While we think it’s great to not sweat, antiperspirant not only has awful synthetic chemicals in it, but they block your pores, preventing you from sweating.   This is just not natural.  Sweating is good for you.   And over time, conventional antiperspirant clogs your pores making it more ineffective.   Since I’ve made the switch to a natural deodorant, I sweat less and I rarely have any odor.

When I didn’t think that Pit Putty couldn’t get any better, Stephanie surprised me and came out with a new scent specifically for women: geranium lime.   I was lucky enough to get a sneak preview and let me tell you, it’s awesome.  I didn’t mind the scent of the original, but I know that some women want something just a little more feminine.   It’s so feminine, that I’m now back to sniffing my armpits, but not because I’m self conscious.  But more because it smells so good.

We give all of Bubble and Bee Organics products the LovelyMama Seal of Approval.

Get It: Be one of the first to get the new scent of Pit Putty.  You can order directly from Bubble and Bee’s website and take 15% off your entire purchase using the code “lovelymom9

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