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As I have been facialist and skincare specialist for over 20 years I get asked quite a lot by
my clients ‘Virginie, Why should I choose a natural skincare or makeup?’

Virginie Claire Group

Virginie Claire (Right)

My answer is simply ‘Why not choose a natural quality product if you have the choice?’ It is up to us to take control of our skin through:

  • Consistency and Commitment
  • Ingredients
  • Knowledge & Education

There can be a lot of confusion and concern regarding ingredients in our cosmetics, one of
the most talked about is parabens. Here I hope to inform not alarm you on what they are and why they are used in cosmetics. So you can choose your products based on an informed choice. Virginie, V Claire Natural Cosmetics.



What are parabens?

Parabens have been in use since the 1950, and are frequently added to cosmetics to prevent the growth of bacteria. The majority of cosmetics use a combination of them because they are cheap and effective.

What are parabens made of?

Parabens are man made, they are a chemical compound of para-hydroxybenzoic acid. They regroup into methylparaben, propylparaben and butylparaben.

What are the effect of parabens on our wellbeing?

Parabens are xenoestrogens, meaning they mimic oestrogens in the body and unsetle the body natural hormones. Also, they can be stored in the body, resulting in a cumulative effect that can damage health overtime.

This overload of oestrogens has been linked to health issues such as breast cancer and reproductive disfunction, including early onset of puberty and reduced sperm count.

What is the natural alternative to parabens?

Many ingredients can be used to preserve cosmetics such as:

Benzyl Alcohol, Salicylic acid, glycerin, sorbic acid, essential oils such as thyme, oregano, rosemary, clove cinnamon, tea tree and many more.

Using a few parabens is harmless, but using a multple amount of cosmetcs including parabens may afect your wellbeing.

Take control of your skin and wellbeing by KNOWING THE INGREDIENTS your cosmetic is made of. Be curious and ask questions, then you can make the right choice.

 

So why should you choose a natural cosmetic. In this article Dearbhla looks at what is actually in our products to help you make more informed choices.

If you had the choice of drinking a glass of tap water, recycled and filtered with added minerals such as chlorine and fluoride or drinking a glass of alpine water, rich in essential minerals from the earth, which would you choose?

Dearbhla Brennan, Natural cosmetic, couleur caramel, headshot, natural beauty, organic beauty, toxin free beauty, beauty, skincare, health, wellness, holistic wellness

It is not always possible to have the purest alternative at our fingertips because we live in a world of mass industrial industries where ingredients can become the least important part of a product and marketing along with gross takings become the top priority. But what happens when you do have the choice: when certified products created as naturally as possible are offered alongside the marketing monsters? You then hold the power, an effortless gesture of turning around these products and reading the ingredients lists to compare:

OPTION 1

Aqua / Water, PEG-8, Glycerin, PEG-60, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Poloxamer 124, Citric Acid, Chlorohexidine Digluconate, Parfum / Fragrance

OPTION 2

Citrus aurantium amara (Bitter Orange) leaf/twig extract*, Aqua/Water/Eau, Sodium Chloride (sea salt), Potassium sulfate, Citrus aurantium amara (Bitter Orange) leaf/twig oil*, Lippia citriodora (Verbena) flower/leaf/stem extract*, Malva sylvestris (Mallow) flower extract*, Lotus corniculatus (Birdsfoot-trefoil) flower extract*, Equisetum arvense (Horsetail) leaf extract*, Medicago sativa (Alfalfa) extract*, Viscum album (Mistletoe) extract*, citral°, geraniol°, limonene°, linalool°

*Organically farmed ingredients, °naturally preservatives occurring in essential oils

 

The above are two toners, option 1 being a generic cosmetic brand (pharmacies), option 2 an organic, 100% natural and certified brand called PHYT’S which is considered a natural cosmetic (beauty salons, health stores).

Dearbhla Brennan, Natural cosmetic, couleur caramel, headshot, natural beauty, organic beauty, toxin free beauty, beauty, skincare, health, wellness, PHYTS organic toner, holistic wellnessThe price difference of only a few euro higher for the natural cosmetic option presented in a clouded glass bottle. This is so UV light will not affect the plant extracts versus a clear plastic bottle for the first option. The main reason that interests us in option 2 is the results the skin will receive from these ingredients: improved circulation, hydrated skin through pH balance, reinforced connective tissue. Every ingredient has a beneficial effect.

WHEN DID THE IDEA FOR PLANT BASED COSMETICS START?

The idea of using a plant based natural cosmetic is not new, as for thousands of years skincare and makeup have been used by men and women alike through the power of herbs, vegetable oils, and pigments from both plants and the earth. Unfortunately with industrial revolution and petro-chemical developments, we lost touch with our roots through the 1900s: products became more about a promise through synthetically created components which mimicked the natural of times before. Thankfully, at home and internationally, there has been a revival of tradition: plant extracts from sustainable, organic and fair trade farming; certifications of purity and quality obtained by companies to guarantee their ingredients; strict criteria that disallows synthetic fertilizers in farming, or strong chemicals used to clean equipment in labs; and absolutely no testing on animals.

 

At V.Claire Natural Cosmetics we work with PHYT’S organic skincare, Couleur Caramel natural makeup and Acorelle natural perfumes and professional waxing. We are beauty and skin therapists; we are passionate to bring out the best in every skin; loyal to the purist and most professional ranges we can find; and obsessed with every cosmetic and ingredient we work with and provide to you.

 

Maybe the simple question is: why choose synthetic, when you can choose a natural cosmetic? We would love to hear from you so comment below with any questions or comments you have!!

 

Dearbhla Lyons

Training & Development

V.Claire Natural Cosmetics

For my new weekly #FabulousFriday blog I’m going to ask the kickass ladies I love about their views on beauty and in particular natural beauty as one of my main aims is to help people reduce their toxic load!

I’m delighted to introduce a new contributor to BeComplete Susan Jane White who will be sharing some of her green beauty tips alongside some of her tasty recipes in the coming months.

Here’s what Susan Jane has to say on Green Beauty

Obnoxiously priced, commercial face creams are designed to separate you from your money and your brain cells. We all know the brands I’m referring too #sexyswipe.

You want to stay young? The answer is not giving hundreds of your hard-earned dollars to some marketing head-f**ck who abuses our vulnerabilities. Nor is it wearing lamé drainpipes and a sleeve of tattoos, like something Electric Picnic heaved up.

The secret to ageing gracefully my friends, is owning it. Wear those wrinkles like you made them! They are there to tell twenty-year-old twits not to mess with us. So go rock them.

I’ve taken to making my own beauty products from natural, cold-pressed oils. Yup. Green beauty is trending, not because it’s non-toxic and kinder to the environment. Green beauty is trending because it works.

[bctt tweet=”Green beauty is trending, not because it’s non-toxic and kinder to the environment. Green beauty is trending because it works. ” username=”alicanavan”]

Check out this deep, penetrating night serum. My skin drinks it up with gratitude. No amount of crème de la whatsies can achieve the same glow I get from one week on argan oil. Yes, argan can sometimes smell like a wet barnyard animal. But you will expertly highjump this nasal challenge by adding grapefruit essential oil and the spectacularly-perfumed tamanu oil.

Grapefruit essential oil is a brilliant astringent to help seduce large pores and zits. Tamanu delivers a consignment of protective antioxidants, and is traditionally associated with improving scar tissue. We like the sound of that. Both tamanu and argan have vertiginous amounts of vitamin E, and 0% synthetic gunk. Vitamin E is important to our ageing skin because it helps protect against the chaos that free radicals unleash. We can’t stop ageing, but we can slow it down.

I share the task of DIY cosmetics with friends to reduce the cost. It makes sense to do a large batch of face serum, and dole them out to a group of friends. Maybe your pals will do the cacao body butter, or other similar treat in return? Score! Another tip is to store the oils in the freezer when they are not in use, which will substantially extend their shelf life.

 Face serum, susan jane white, natural beauty, beauty, homemade cosmetics, green beauty

Midnight Face Serum

6 months supply

 

20ml cold pressed argan oil

5 drops grapefruit essential oil

2 teaspoons cold pressed tamanu oil

Mix the oils into a 30ml bottle dropper (available online and at pharmacies). Shake. Store in a cool place, or refrigerator alongside rosewater or other toners to assist with its application.

THE NEW HYDRA JEUNESSE NATURAL FOUNDATION BY COULEUR CARAMEL

As we move into spring it’s the perfect time to lighten the load in every way. Spring is the perfect time to spring clean our mind, home, wardrobe and even beauty routine.

During the winter months I tend to use a slightly heavier foundation so at Springtime I like to make a switch and lighten my make up. As everyone knows I’m a huge fan of topical health and wellbeing and by that I mean the products we put on our skin.

Our skin is our largest organ so a lot of the toxins go straight into our blood stream from the products we use. Recent research by Bionsen, a natural deodorant company, found that the average woman’s daily grooming and make-up routine means she ‘hosts’ a staggering 515 different synthetic chemicals on her body every single day.

Becoming more mindful of this will help your overall toxic load. Even if you switch just some of your skincare to more natural alternatives you will be doing something great for your overall health and wellbeing.

I have teamed up with Couleur Caramel – a 100% natural and organic make up range to tell you about their new foundation. Couleur Caramel helped launch my book last year (buy here) along with Phyts natural skincare as there’s a chapter on natural beauty in it (BUY HERE) and I have been using their products and working with them ever since.

This foundation is light and fresh but it also has sufficient coverage. In this picture I was tired, had a cold sore and some spots as I have been travelling a lot and my body was screaming at me to rest. As you can see it gives a really nice healthy glow. There is absolutely no filter used here either and its before I powdered.

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It has been formulated with natural hyaluronic acid, Juvenessence (brown algae) and organic inca inchi oil. The main thing I need with my own skin as I age is plumping and hydration and this does both because the hyaluronic acid plumps and hydrates the skin and the Juvenessence and inca inchi oil nourishes and protects against the signs of aging (sign me up!!). The result is velvety smooth skin and a glowing, revitalized complexion.

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You can set this with their silk powder, which is so incredibly fine, natural and effective. It literally disappears and does a great job at setting your foundation. I struggle finding a good powder that doesn’t sink into the fine lines and wrinkles especially around the eye are but this a goody!

natural make up, natural foundation, health, wellness, skincare, beauty, beauty products, couleur caramel, wellbeing, the full 360, becompleteThis natural foundation comes in 6 shades; No.21 Porcelain, No.22 Rosy Beige, No.23 Skin Beige, No. 24 Sand, No. 25 Ash Blonde, No. 25 Amber Blonde €34.00

Check out Couleur Caramel for stockists nationwide or buy online and Couleur Caramel is also available in Nourish Stores nationwide

#ad #collaboration

As we head into the party season here are my top 5 natural beauty products I’m a big believer in reducing the amount of chemicals we use topically each day. It’s an issue of load, as let’s face it, as women we use a large variety of product every day! So think about switching some of your products for a more natural alternative.

  1. Top of my list is this body scrub from Urban Veda This range is naturally formulated to Ayurvedic principles to really embrace the therapeutic properties of plants. It’s a sensory sensation in the shower. It’s a gentle body scrub made from crushed walnut and organic pumice. The glow it leaves is because of the citrusy vitamin rich addition of orange and lemon. It contains vitamin E, geranium and palmarosa to help hydrate making it a one stop shop and an essential winter beauty item. Scrubbing helps with our circulation and helps to get rid of dead skin cells too. This fab set is €43.99 BUY HERE

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  1. Next up is this moisturizing night balm from Irish company Anu This ANU Night Balm is deeply nourishing which can be exactly what our skin needs coming into the winter months. With the tug of war between central heating and braving the elements outdoors some extra TLC and a change in skincare can be necessary. This balm not only contains moisturizing oils and butters but, carrageen Irish moss seaweed, lavender and beeswax too. After cleansing, apply to face, neck and décolletage before a great night’s sleep. It can also be used as a general multi balm on eyebrows, lips and other areas of dry skin (some people also use it as a cleanser) and it has been known to clear up spots, blemishes and even mild eczema. €20 BUY HERE

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  1. This lippy from Couleur Caramel is perfect for the upcoming festive season. A naturally nourishing lipstick rich in plant based active ingredients. They come in many different shades. Check them out HERE €19.00

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  1. Soak in a luxurious bath after a long hard day with this beautiful wild oats bath soak. Karen Cottier from Wild Oats Soap has made this wild oats bath soak with lavender and milk and not only is it great for soothing stress but it’s also great for kids or adults with eczema or chicken pox too. €11.95 BUY HERE

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  1. It just wouldn’t be right to move into winter without mentioning my must have beauty item. The Weleda skin food is a lifesaver for dry, rough skin and a great travel partner too. It’s made with organic extracts of chamomile, calendula and wild pansy to soothe dry or rough skin and revitalizing rosemary extract to perk up tired skin. It also smells delicious because of the refreshing essential oils of sweet orange and lavender. This ladies is a must have for the handbag!! BUY HERE €11.95

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AC_NaturalBeauty_CROP

My sister rang me and told me that she had just been sugared. Hmm, sounds tasty I thought and wondered whether she had taken up baking! With great excitement she explained that sugaring is an ancient hair removal technique and that she had just had her bikini line sugared!!!

As soon as she said natural my ears perked up because these days I’m doing a lot of research into more natural beauty solutions, but could it really be possible that a cooked paste of only sugar, water and a little lemon juice could remove my hair?

Well the only way to find out is to try it, so I booked an appointment with Lindsay, who is The Sugarist at The Hive Salon on Great Georges Street in Dublin.

Lindsay Leggett is a sugaring specialist born and raised in the city of Seattle, WA. After almost a decade of world travel, Lindsay spent three years honing her sugaring skills at Seattle’s, The Sweet Spot voted Best of the Best by Allure Magazine, before stepping out on her own as The Sugarist.

Sugaring is an ancient hair removal technique, using a cooked paste of only sugar, water and a little lemon juice. Because of the high water content, the paste can’t stick to your live skin cells at all, only picking up dead skin cells and hair!

TAMARAS SUAGRING IMAGE

This means much less impact on the skin, less redness and irritation, and most people have no ingrown hairs. The paste is applied against the direction of natural growth and flicked off by hand *in* the direction of natural growth, meaning all of the hair comes out from the root with no broken hairs. It’s pretty impressive to watch and most clients get about two weeks completely hair free and I definitely remained hair free for longer than that. Sugar can remove hair as short as 1/8 inch, much shorter than wax, and is very very effective at removing the downy peach fuzz on the face or neck. (I’m trying this next!!)

*A GENTLE TOUCH FOR CANCER CARE:

Because of its gentleness, sugar is an excellent choice for people who have completed chemotherapy, and find hairs growing in brand new places, especially facial hair. The inability of the paste to adhere to the fragile (tender?) live skin means minimal impact, and irritation. Some clients find that a single service is all that’s necessary to permanently remove hair, while others have significantly diminished re growth, mostly depending on whether the hair was present before chemo treatments.

THE SUGARIST

TO FIND OUT MORE OR TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT CONTACT LINDSAY AT:
THE SUGARIST WEBSITE
FACEBOOK
TWITTER
PH: 01 475 8649