morosophical beautification

(S)-5-hydroxy-1-(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)-3-decanone

Last updated: 2013-08-01. Future updates will be made to this post’s page-double, what is morosophical beautification?
First posted: 2011-04-09
This blog is: A tragicomic moral tale of one woman’s valiant struggles with first-world problems and her moves towards minimalism, environmentalism, and liberation from consumerism. In other words: hippy-dippy tree-hugging granolarama sh*t, occasional arty-farty vapid airy-fairy nonsense musings, sanctimonious pontificating rants, may contain nuts and other irritants, but but BUT: with regular chocolate.
This sticky post contains: an introduction, quick links to the blog’s ten cardinal posts and some other main stuff, and a “notepad” of chocolate, skincare, and other grooming titivating beautifying stuff in current use.

meet a beautiful folly (says over-optimistic gent to beauteous lady)

INTRODUCTION
TO
THIS
HERE
BLOG

WHAT?

Morosophical beautification: because morosophy has its beauties too.

This blog started up as an extension to my MakeupAlley Notepad, and as an archive of my stuff over there. The rest of this here sticky post is that notepad. Basically, the “current affairs” of what I’m using currently. This will include metaphorical “life partners” such as oil (of one sort or another); as well as occasional on-off liaisons, extra-marital relations, and light-hearted flirtations (e.g. mascaras). Being pretty vanilla, none of these are very exciting or risqué.

Much of what follows below is over on that MUA notepad, but this stuff here is maintained regularly and is more up-to-date and more accurately represents the reality of everyday Ginger O’Rama beautificatory life. Another reason for maintaining my MUA notepad off-MUA is that updating the MUA one is often glitchy (compatibility issues, long story over many years). That MUA notepad also contains the stuff on this here blog on ethics and this stuff on politics (originally appeared in relation to a MUA board-discussion).

QUICK LINKS TO THE MAIN POSTS

(subject to change etc. etc. etc.) Here are the other main basic foundational posts, at the core of this here present blog:

  1. sensitive skin: a user’s manual
  2. in case of emergency
  3. resources: skin and its sensitivities
  4. Earth Day Special: Gingerrama’s Green-ish Lists (2012)
    and the 2013 version
  5. sunscreens
  6. antioxidant serums:
    especially the vitamin C serum five-post series
  7. ersatz (1): hair product find of the millenium
  8. ersatz (2): cleanser
  9. DIY multi-purpose oil
    and ersatz (3): moisturiser
  10. and, beyond beautification-products proper:
    Consumer Rights: draft Ten Commandments
    reducing consumption
    cruelty-free resources

See also: dropdown menu of categories and “search” box ( → on larger screens, ↓ on smaller ones).

QUICK LINKS TO THE MAIN PAGES

OK, they’re all relevant and massively important and totally worth reading, and in the drop-down menu, but:

  1. For criteria used to select and buy “better” (including but not only ethically), see: credo & caveats
  2. For some more “what” plus the “how” and “why” of this blog; its description and purpose; my ethical positions & posturings, and some further pontification: raisons d’être

WHO, HOW?

SKIN:
sensitive—(structurally/physically) thin, fragile, delicate, fine (fine-grain, no visible pores)—irritable, reactive (ex. photosensitive), some allergies—on/off eczema—no acne, but subject to irritation breakouts—no wrinkles but gradually acquiring lines of expression: as befits age, experience, and hopefully also wit and wisdom—slightly dry—Baumann type DSNW (for whatever that’s worth). Current condition: good.

HAIR:
below shoulder-length—fine—thick/dense/lots of it—slightly wavy (2a-c depending on time of year, weather conditions, etc.) with curly underside and some frizzy bits—dryish, porous—natural (not dyed or retexturised or otherwise buggered around with using heat, a.k.a. “styled”; left to its own devices to dry naturally)

COLOURING:
PPP < NW10—some freckles—some blue-purple shadows in inner eye corners—grey/green eyes—red hair

A.O.B.
Otherwise a boringly healthy, medium-sized, 40-year-old female in reasonable condition.

Stuff used = a mixture of “greener” and “less green,” primary considerations being that the stuff works and is cruelty-free. If there’s a more ethical version, within reason (i.e. not at an insane price), I’ll give it preference.

NO NO NO:
I don’t use any of the following, due to incompatibility with sensitive etc. skin:
—scrubs, Clarisonic, Pretika, Mia, other physical exfoliants: hands & facecloth is as much as my skin can take;
—AHA (except a very mild version of lactic acid, in the form of yoghurt), BHA (except salicylic acid if I get a zit; not happened in a long time though), and basically generally chemical exfoliants and peels;
—retinaldehyde: though skin can handle the small amounts of low-dose weaker less usable retinol in rosehip seed oil;
—and a bunch of known irritants / reaction-triggers, compiled over the years: c/o doctors, plus trial and error.
My skincare is very very very vanilla. But: it works for my skin; and better boring than exciting, when exciting means reactions, damage, and pain…

I use a Diva Cup.

I also use conventional drugs (i.e. “medicine” with thanks to “science”) as appropriate: when in need, in pain, under instruction from a doctor, etc. There are limits to hippy-dippiness. Those limits are (a) common sense, (b) sense full stop, and (c) basic animal dislike of pain, liking being comfortable, and survival/life-instinct.

I believe in sleep. And not much else. OK, chocolate.

SKIN PHILOSOPHY:
I don’t want to call what follows in the main notepad below a routine. Sounds too… rigorous? Regular, regulated, religious, repressive? Politically worrying, given the proximity between “regimen” and “régime”? Quite aside from any absolutist, tyrannical, or cultish associations: the implications of organization and discipline—be that imposed by external authority or self-discipline—would be very misleading. The notepad-stuff doesn’t always happen, doesn’t always happen in that order, and can take any length of time from 10 minutes to a good hour or so. Bearing in mind the sleep factor, as well as caffeination and chocolate-hunting urges and emergencies.

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NOTEPAD:
CURRENT
SKIN, HAIR, & COSMETIC
PRODUCTS

THE BARE NECESSITIES:
QUICK LIST OF PRINCIPAL PRODUCTS IN BATHROOM
(FACE, BODY, HAIR, THE WHOLE LOT)

1. Shampoo
2. Conditioner
3. Meadowfoam seed oil: eye make-up removal, cleaning, face moisturising, body moisturising, shaving, hair
4. Oil/beeswax balm: lip balm, eye cream, hand-cream, moisturiser for dry patches
5. Zinc oxide sunscreen: face and body
6. Zinc oxide sunscreen stick: lips and eye-area
7. Potassium alum/water deodorant spray
8. Coconut oil/bicarbonate of soda/starch deodorant cream

(+ Italics = I could live—and have done so, fairly often—without these)

9. Witch-hazel hydrosol (no alcohol, unscented): general-purpose soothing, evening rapid cleanser
10. Antioxidant serum (unscented): sunscreen-boosting serum for face, under moisturiser
11. Scent
12. Coconut oil: hair

BARE-FACED CHEEK:
QUICK LIST OF PRODUCTS IN MAKEUP BAG

1. Mascara: black, waterproof
2. Concealer: for eye area
3. Lipstick 

(+ Italics = I could live—and have done so, fairly often—without these)

4. Eyeliner: brown, cake

ABSOLUTE BASICS

1. Oil
2. Sunscreen (actually, could skip this and just use clothing and avoid sun, if we’re thinking Doomsday scenarios)
3. Mascara

IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD, YOU’RE ON A DESERT ISLAND, AND YOU CAN ONLY HAVE ONE COSMETIC* ITEM

1. Mascara Sunscreen (OK, let’s be practical: after all, it is the end of the world)

* as defined in, for ex. EU law: not a medically-necessary thing; includes skincare and haircare

Source: The Little Loaf's visit to Tapas24, Barcelona

Source: The Little Loaf’s visit to Tapas24, Barcelona

BASICS & SUPPLEMENTS:

  • Vitamin D: 1000 IU tablets = 25 mcg vitamin D3–cholecalciferol–vegetarian, from lanolin c/o sheep wool; any brand; 2 in winter, 1 in summer
  • + Vitamin C: Ester-C 600 mg veg caps = 600 mg calcium ascorbate + 100 mg citrus bioflavenoids–vegan; Solgar or Sisu
  • taken with coffeeeeeee a nice cup of tea and a sit down, first thing in the morning; weaning self off coffee (with frequent lapses), now drinking nice green or white tea.There are many excellent ones available here in Vancouver: while supermarkets and corner-shops and so on sell great stuff, I do very much like these purveyors for their stylishness, though: Bayswater, David’s, and Teaz Tea. OK, I do still often drink coffee in the morning. I’m trying, though…
  • + food (repeated as needed throughout day)
  • teeth: Preserve (Whole Foods) toothbrush: partly recycled, recyclable, and cruelty-free manufacturer
    + a toothpaste, with fluoride, without SLS (eczema etc.), with mint (by which I mean actually tasting of actual mint): ex. Sensodyne (several, especially the old Fresh Mint one in a giant tube) or Jason PowerSmile
  • household cleaning stuff: dish-washing liquid, laundry detergent, cleaning stuff: usually unscented (I’ll use scented kitchen stuff + gloves), sensitive-skin-friendly, no SLS (eczema: SLES fine thought), biodegradable, cruelty-free. Enzyme-free laundry detergents, for most fabrics (plus some hydrogen bleach where appropriate). AspenClean, Bio-Vert (Canadian), Ecover, NatureClean (Canadian), Seventh Generation. Some DIY stuff too (baking soda, vinegar). No enzymes in laundry detergent. Cool to cold washes where/when possible. For hand-washing—bras, mainly—something mild: currently Curelle HYDRA shampoo.

CURRENT CHOCOLATE:

Zazubean Nakid 73% chocolate with cocoa nibs.
Beans from the Dominican Republic and Ecuador.
Organic & fair-trade.
Swiss manufacture.
Local company (go Van!).

CONTENTS OF THE REST OF THE NOTEPAD:

And there’s links to chocolate-based recipes along the way; images of said chocolate-based delights feature along the way.

I. HEAD
and everything else that’s above nipple-level

MORNING

This usually takes about 15-25 minutes, depending on how asleep I am and how long is spent under a shower in an attempt to wake up. And depending on whether or not hair is washed; that adds another few minutes. Turning water off while conditioner soaks in and so on (unless still half-asleep: ethics wake up with rest of thinking-parts-of-brain, not yet a conditioned reflex). “Face” here includes neck, throat, décolleté, ears, tops of shoulders. Shorthand for “those parts of me that face the world, are located above the boobs, but do not necessarily include the eyes”; The Bosom and The Gaze also having somewhat different/differentiated, shall we say, outlooks and being-looked-upon rôles to play.

TOOLS

  • using soft (or, elsewhere, softened) tepid water, body temperature or slightly cooler
  • face-cloths a.k.a. washcloths, cleansing cloths, (UK) flannels: made out of thin cotton towelling, square, around 20 cm x 20 cm, cheap, plentiful, most of my collection is now also elderly and grubby. I use one every day or two, chucking them all in the wash at the end of the week. Bought from various places over the last 20 years or so. Use: thorough but gentle cleansing, mild exfoliation. If you want more, apply more pressure, speed, roughness…
  • reusable cotton pads: made from recycled flannel sheets or pyjamas, purchased on Etsy; I made my own before, but badly, so they disintegrated in the wash. Easy to make yourself so long as you have a sewing-machine and do the edges really well. I use a fresh one every time (usually eye makeup removal); like the face-cloths, they all go in the wash every week. I also have some made of bamboo which are also good.
  • towels: cotton towelling, and as with face-cloths, various sources. Some are even—how bleeding-heart granola can you get—made from sustainable organic cotton. Allegedly. Others were donated by or long-term-borrowed from parental units, former flat-mates, and other associates in previous existences. In short: I don’t know where most of our towels come from, and I’m not sure I’d want to. But if getting more, we buy cheap AND organic etc. cotton.

EYE MAKEUP REMOVER

  • multi-purpose oil
    currently: meadowfoam seed oil (Mountain Rose Herbs / Soapcraft.ca)

    • using reusable cotton pads: first soak pads with warm water, hold over closed eyes for 30 seconds, then swipe, then poke around at lashes with fingers (= removing tubing mascara); rinse pads; repeat process, with pads soaked in oil (= to remove other eye makeup); a combination of warm water and pressure (for tubing mascara) and oil removes most stuff
    • sometimes in the evening, but most often the next morning in the shower because yes, I am lazy and yes, I am one of these bad people who don’t always religiously remove their makeup at night, every night; I don’t pray either, or believe in (skincare or other) rituals

CLEANSER

Something mild and unscented, but that does actually do the job of cleaning. See also ersatz (2): cleanser.

  • currently oaty stuff: fine-milled oatmeal or an oatmeal cleansing bar.
    Yes, sometimes I am a really bad person and use the Aveeno bar, because the damn thing’s great and there is currently no substitute, greener and cruelty-free or otherwise. None at all. Besides, borrowing/stealing others’ skincare doesn’t count.

    • application: onto wet skin, using hands, massage around face and neck and bosom (if there’s any excesss, just spread it around: gentle exfoliation all over c/o hands), remove with wet face-cloth (further gentle exfoliation)

ANTIOXIDANT, SPF-BOOSTING, & HUMECTANT LAYER

  • Purpose: soothing skin, adding a hydrating layer before moisturiser (attracting and trapping water under oil), and (in theory, albeit with some experimental data to support it) boosting sun protection.
    • Garden of Wisdom matcha green tea hyaluronic acid serum
    • sometimes mixed with Garden of Wisdom natural majik green tea hydragel (2:1 matcha:majik)
    • application: 1 pump of each patted onto damp (only very slightly damp) skin and generally moved around to ensure even coverage; sinks in fast and smoothly. Experimenting: sometimes mixing the two, sometimes applying the C+E and then the green tea serum

MOISTURISER

  • FACE & EYES
    an outrageously bland basic banal oil and/or cream; usually unscented; see also ersatz (3): moisturiser

    • currently: multi-purpose oil = meadowfoam seed oil (Mountain Rose Herbs / Soapcraft.ca)
    • application: on damp skin, small dab, rubbed and warmed-up between fingertips, dotted all over skin—eye area too—pressed on and patted in.

  • EYES & LIPS
    A richer denser moist heavy-duty multi-purpose balm

    • currently: Silk Naturals Naked Organic Lip Balm
      = olive, castor, jojoba, avocado, hemp, & cranberry oils + beeswax, candelilla & carnauba waxes
    • application: on lips, around the outer corners of the eyes, and any dry patches
    • if dryer and/or in very cold dry weather, on any dry patches (ex. forehead): there’s an escalation of other things used, depending on extent of dryness and whether it’s eczema too: see EXTRA STUFF further down.

SUNSCREEN

  • FACE & EYES 
    a minimalistically beautiful SPF 30+ zinc oxide-only physical sunscreen, unscented, no silicones, no heavier oils and waxes, light but moist

    • BurnOut Eco-Sensitive
    • application: to dry skin (wait for moisturiser to sink in, otherwise this stuff is tacky); all over, including throat and ears, down to the nipple-line.
    • eye-area: BurnOut Ocean Tested
    • application: all around the eyes after mascara (and tidying up stray bit of mascara on nearby skin), before eye-concealer. Provides a matte surface for makeup. There’s minimal to zero slippage with non-tubing mascaras; with tubing ones, doesn’t seem to matter.
  • EYES & LIPS
    a moisturising SPF 30+ zinc oxide lip sunscreen, unscented and preferably unflavoured

    • BurnOut, coconut flavour: nearest they do to an unflavoured unscented one
    • application: on lips in the usual way; around the eyes, via tapping on with a clean finger-tip and then smoothing, after I’ve applied eye make-up, if the eye area feels a bit dry.

EVENING

I should explain and apologize that I’m not very good at the whole night-time ritual business. Even worse than my usual tolerance (and competence) towards rituals and routines. Hence there are several of them.

I’m very good at wanting to go from day/clothed/awake/vertical to night/PJs/asleep/horizontal as quickly, efficiently, and lazily as possible. Unfortunately, I am not Wallace and don’t have Grommet and brilliant gadgets to help. Practice makes perfect, though; decades of daily practice have knocked the total time for the whole process down to 2 minutes (I cheat in that garments are flung off and get folded the next day).

Also, my skin seems to be happiest when it’s only cleaned once a day. Sometimes even every couple of days.

Seeing as how it’s summer right now, the main cleaning bit of evening routine is washing my feet. And year round, the usual cleaning of teeth.

EVENING NON-ROUTINE #1

This is what happens most often:

  • do nothing at all to skin (or to hair)
  • remember to switch off bathroom light and other lights, check front door is locked
  • go to bedroom
  • remove clothes
  • go to bed
  • sleep

EVENING NON-ROUTINES #2-5

Sometimes I add various other steps, instead of the first item in ROUTINE #1 above:

→ See also: EXTRA STUFF: DRYNESS & ALLERGIES
Delia Smith's chocolate mousse

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II. REST OF BODY
= nipple-line and below

STUFF FOR HANDS, NEXT TO BATHROOM & KITCHEN SINKS

  • Everyday Shea unscented moisturizing body wash, mixed with Curelle HYDRA shampoo
  • oil (multi-purpose oil in bathroom; olive in kitchen)
  • multi-purpose balm
  • no nail-varnish: reasons of environmental queasiness (ex. usin all these cotton-wool pads, then thrown away into landfill) and laziness, also irritation from fumes (removers but also even big 3- and big 5-free polishes) and drying of nails (even with ditto re. polishes): prone to breaking, splitting, cracking, hang-nails, brittleness, and infections; a bad combination when you add my bad nail-/finger-chewing habit.
  • SPF 30+ zinc oxide-only physical sunscreen (see further below)

TOOLS

  • face-cloths, as before
  • Gillette Venus 3-blade razor: the brand is now cruelty-free, though owned by P&G; that old version of the razor TTBOMK antedates their take-over; all the plastic parts can be recycled, including the head though that means messing about delicately with the actual blades; they, too, can be recycled separately depending on your available facilities

CLEANSER

  • a first clean using multi-purpose oil to ensure old sunscreen has been removed
    currently: meadowfoam seed oil

    • application: wet skin, pour some oil into palm of hand, rub hands together, apply, move hands around a bit, rinse
  • a bland boring cleanser: same one as for face, it lives in the shower
    • currently: oaty stuff
    • applied with hands then massaged around using hands and a facecloth / washcloth / flannel
    • using soft (or, elsewhere, softened) tepid water, body temperature or slightly cooler

SHAVING STUFF

MOISTURISER

  • multi-purpose oil
    • application: if less dry: in shower, leave on for about a minute, rinse off
    • if more dry (errm, usually): at end of shower, leave to absorb
  • hands, rest of self under clothes, eczema-prone areas:

SUNSCREEN

  • antioxidant serum:
    • currently: either what I’m using on the face-to-elbows upper-body regions anyway, so right now that’s
      Garden of Wisdom matcha green tea hyaluronic acid serum
      sometimes mixed 2:1 with Garden of Wisdom Natural Majik Green Tea Hydragel
    • or Silk Naturals Awesome Sauce: I need to use this up before it goes off, and I don’t use this very often on my face as most evenings I’m too lazy/sleepy; most mornings I’m too lazy/can only just about be arsed with one layer of serum, but not two, and certainly not deciding to use one or the other, or keeping a schedule of which to use when
    • application: on all exposed flesh, plus shoulders and tops of arms (even if covered)
  • SPF 30+ zinc oxide-only physical sunscreen:
    • currently: some combination of BurnOut Ocean Tested SPF 30+ and/or Replenix Sheer Physical Spray SPF 50
    • application: all exposed flesh + shoulders and tops of arms; if I’m running late and in a hurry on the way to work, then the Replenix alone; usually BurnOut with Replenix on top. If reapplication is needed and skin is sweaty: then more layers of Replenix.

DEODORANT
= Gingerrama’s Deodowich©

  • unscented potassium alum deodorant (a.k.a. mineral salt, crystal rock, liquid crystal)
    • Naturally Fresh Deodorant Crystal spray
  • + unscented solid deodorant layer
    • Chagrin Valley coconut silk deodorant cream, natural (= no added) scent

SCENT

  • solid perfume: can’t use alcohol-based scents, rashes ensue
    • Roxana Illuminated Perfume in Green Witch
  • or (E)au naturel(le)

→ See also: EXTRA STUFF: DRYNESS & ALLERGIES

Delia Smith's molten chocolate puddings

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III. HAIR

As with anything else, using soft (or, elwhere, softened) tepid water, body temperature or slightly cooler. With minimum time spent under the water: better on eczematic skin as well as for the environment.

SHAMPOO

  • somewhat-moisturising shampoo, usually but not always unscented; see also ersatz (1): hair product find of the millenium
    • Ballyhoo Bath fragrance-free solid shampoo bar
    • application: one wash only, with head tipped upside down, gentle on the scalp, rinse thoroughly with lots of water. Even with the pre-wash coconut oil treatment, no extra wash is needed.

CONDITIONER

  • moisturising-but-not-heavy-and-greasifying conditioner, usually but not always unscented
    • Ballyho Bath fragrance-free solid conditioner bar 
    • application: on washed well-rinsed-out hair, excess water wrung out (using hands and washcloth); applied all over, mainly the ends but including some areas that are near the scalp and roots, where some of my hair is otherwise more dry and frizzy. I wash and condition my hair at the start of my morning shower, leaving the conditioner on for as long as possible, until its end (in between, wash self, oil body, rinse).

STYLING

  • if leaving hair to air-dry naturally (= what I normally do): virgin coconut oil

    • application: as needed, to hair that’s nearly dry. Tiny amount, just on ends and frizzier bits. Technique: vague hand-waving in the direction of hair, rather than smoothing hands through it. On the underside, some further vague motions, this time fluffing and teasing prior to head-tossing. I’m quite convinced that the tossing of the mane is the crucial step.

See also: EXTRA STUFF: DRY HAIR

TOOLS

  • an old wooden brush with wooden quills (instead of regular bristles) or a paddle brush; both are FSC-certified wood, from The Body Shop
    • on dry hair to get out any tenacious tangles ex. if I’ve been walking/running on a windy day
    • I find it’s more massaging to the scalp and tears hair less than other brushes I’ve used in the last few years
    • there’s also a comb in the bathroom, but I’ve not used it in ages. A Kent comb: plastic, hand-cut, with fairly wide-spaced largish teeth that are rounded and smooth at the ends (an unusual feature in combs). About 20 years old, no idea what the model’s actual name/number is. Looks like lots of other plastic combs with handles seen in lots of shops (except for those smooth ends). Not used very much: my hair behaves better if I don’t comb it when damp, if I just use fingers gently instead; thanks curly people for passing on that tip.

Nigella Lawson's Molten Chocolate Babycakes

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IV. MAKEUP

These are either being used currently right now, or are in The Bag and have been used at some point in the past month. First one in the list is current everyday thing at this very moment. Further levels at the end of this post.

TOOLS

All are cruelty-free, vegan, cheap, and made from sustainable materials (bamboo, FSC wood) or recycled and/or recyclable ones (the plastics used)

  • small brushes (intended for eyeshadow, used for concealer): EcoTools
  • kabuki brushes: The Body Shop (and their twist-up blusher brush), EcoTools (travel one in aluminium tube)
  • lash & brush comb: Marks & Spencer, from their mini travel set
  • Tweezerman metal-toothed lash comb (unless, as I’m doing right now, using tubing mascara)
  • cotton-wool buds/Q-tips: the ones with paper sticks, organic cotton, recyclable, from Whole Foods

NAILS

No nail varnish: dry brittle nails, prone to hang-nails and breaking (and being chewed), easily damaged by all known nail-polish removers, and desiccated by nail-polish itself. Including Big 3- and Big 5-free, water-based, etc.

LEVEL ONE: EVERYDAY NORMALITY

Skin currently in decent shape; but I refuse to leave my burrow and encounter fresh air outside, let alone people, without a minimum coating of mascara. Down to roots of lashes, looking vaguely convincing as though tinted. It’s a little bit like drag, in terms of one’s “normal, natural” outside appearance differing from one’s “true” inner perception of self. The real true me has dark lashes, the incongruous false outer appearance needs tweaking to reflect that, and I simply don’t feel comfortable or myself until the lashes are dark. Can go from alien to human-ish-oid in an easy comfortable 10 minutes (with tea), current record is 4 minutes.

I don’t even wear enough makeup to qualify as following the rules of the appropriate gingery-rose palette on your left…

MASCARA

  • in black; unscented, no clumping or flaking; no smudging and ideally waterproof: I wear glasses, and otherwise they get covered in oily gunk. My new ones sit closer to my eyes, and I have long eyelashes, so mascara is an issue…
    • Blinc Mascara Amplified (tubing waterproof mascara)
    • application: a rapid once-over, top and bottom lashes, upper and lower sides; probably more like two coats on upper lashes, but no going back over lashes in another full coat. Smudge-proof, water-proof, no flakes.

EYE CONCEALER

  • skin-coloured, non-transferring (same reason as mascara)
    • Silk Naturals Sleep in a Jar in light peach, their lightest shade
    • application: small quantity on eyelids, eye area up to brows, and in the under-eye areas, inner corner next to nose. Applied with clean fingertip or small brush. Also a teeny amount down my nose.

LIPS

  • an everyday rapid Ones’ Lips But Better perfect lippie:
    • Silk Naturals Kisser Slicker in Raindrops on Roses

LEVEL TWO: ONE STAGE UP

Same as Level One, except:

EYELINER
For tightlining:

  • Nvey Eco cake liner in Brown: a darker espresso brown.
    I thought for a while this was too dark on me, but so long as it’s applied with a light hand it’s manageable behind glasses.
    Impressively budge-proof, dead easy to apply, and comfortable even on very teary allergic days. I’ve worn it when out partying of an evening, i.e. circumstances where I have every excuse for not taking my makeup off before bed. You know, as opposed to plain old everyday laziness. Which is just me being a bad person.

    • applied using a short-handled brush (the whole brush is about the length of my pinkie-finger) that came with Clinique brush-on cream liner; first dipping the brush in water, swirl around the cake to moisten. On lash roots, dot-and-zigzag motion. The brush has a very short firm head—about 3mm long—with quite stiff bristles, straight across; not an angled brush, not a fine-tip liner brush. Suits me best, as I’m short-sighted and applying “blind” (i.e. taking advantage of my naturally superior close-up vision!

CONCEALER

  • same as Level One

LIPS
A vamped-up subtle rosy-red tint (if “vamp” and “subtle” aren’t mutually exclusive):

  • Silk Naturals Slick Stick in Strawberry Fields: a sheer berry-red, similar colour-family to the Kisser Slicker in Bitten (see Level Three) and Lipstick Queen Medieval
  • or Lipstick Queen Medieval

LEVEL THREE: UP ANOTHER NOTCH

Still just basic normal-human-simulacrum drag. The maximum-fifteen-minute version.

EYELINER

  • same as Level Two

MASCARA

  • same as Levels One & Two

EYE & OTHER CONCEALER

  • same as Levels One & Two

FACE

  • Silk Naturals perfecting powder (translucent, loose = silk powder + mica + silica microspheres)
    • applied  using a stubby kabuki brush + a teeny bit applied with a small brush–same kind as used for eye concealer–under the lower lashline: helps prevent mascara smudging, if done before doing eyes
    • using this as full-facial slap if there’s any risk of someone taking photos of me; while my skin is basically in good condition, no visible flaws in normal viewing conditions, bare-faced I end up bizarrely unphotogenic. Somehow, this stuff helps.

LIPS

  • Lipstick Queen Medieval
  • or Silk Naturals Kisser Slicker in Bitten: similar shade to Medieval, slightly more pigmented and redder

This lot lives in an appropriate receptacle for shiny things: an old Gift With Purchase space-age silver Clinique makeup bag. The bag also contains backup supplies of everyday stuff: mascara, lip-balm, lipstick. Other levels also exist.

→ See also: EXTRA STUFF: MAKEUP

Dennis Cotter's olive oil chocolate mousse

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V. RECIPES FOR THE IMAGES ON THIS NOTEPAD

This last one below isn’t really a recipe, except insofar as it might be a recipe for happiness (and possibly also–or therefore also–an elixir of eternal youth and magic beauty-potion): chocolate. At least 70% cocoa solids. Eat daily. At least once daily.

chocolate stack chocolate stack chocolate stack

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VI. EXTRA STUFF

EXTRA STUFF (1): SEASONAL ALLERGIES

EYES

  • eyebright (euphrasia) sterile aqueous solution eye lotion: apply to closed eyes using pads, allowing some of it to go into eyes. Hold pads over eyes for a couple of minutes.

NOSE

  • apply unscented lip balm or other waxy stuff to inside of nose. A first step of defence against pollen, spores, etc. from invading, sticking to hairs inside nose, and triggering reactions.

SKIN (FACE & BODY, ALL OVER)

  • back to basics, and cleaning self as little as possible, minimal water-contact, much use of oats
  • CLEANSER: oil or emollient cream
  • MOISTURISER: oil or emollient cream
  • SUNSCREEN: Vanicream SPF 60
    (now RIP, and not yet tried its SPF 50 replacement)
  • DEODORANT: just zinc oxide baby butt cream
  • HAIR: unscented mild stuff, ex. Curelle shampoo & conditioner
  • MAKEUP: level 0 (see further below), just a very reliable plain mascara

ALSO / GENERALLY

EXTRA STUFF (2): DRYNESS

DRY AND INTOLERANT
Substituting in spring to early summer super-mega-allergicky bonanza-time, and other occasional bouts of irritability through the year:

  • CLEANSER (face & body): oil (a basic bland one: mineral, sunflower) or emollient cream
    Cleansing with water once a day maximum, and very little water and minimum skin-water contact: standing over a sink or shallow-filled bath, rather than hosing myself down in the shower. If my skin’s very unhappy, I’ll only clean skin with water every other day (and only once then), otherwise cleaning myself water-free.
  • TONER: cool-to-tepid tap water (my local water is lovely, soft, off glaciers, and well-treated); if I’m away somewhere with lousy hard water, I’ll resort to bottled mineral water
  • MOISTURISER (face & body): oil or emollient cream; heavy waxy stuff on lips and around eyes
  • SUNSCREEN: Vanicream SPF 60 (ZnO + TiO₂; now RIP, not yet tried its SPF 50 replacement)
  • HAIR: something unscented and mild, ex. Curelle shampoo and conditioner, washing only every 4 days, and putting hair up in between (plaits/braids, messy bun, etc.). When my skin’s been very troublesome and I’m on minimum-water-contact, I’ve been known to get someone else to wash my hair for me, with my head tipped back over a sink or tub (like in hospital or at a hair salon).
  • DEODORANT & SCENT: zinc oxide cream: baby butt paste, a.k. diaper- / nappy-rash cream

General approach and technique to dealing with dry skin: layering. Reasons for why:

  1. Just as with separate shampoo + conditioner or separate moisturiser + sunscreen: better functionality for both purposes than a 2-in-1; in my experience, 2-in-1s are never “the one product that does it all” but tend to be at best 1/2-and-1/2.
  2. Parallel with clothing: there’s greater flexibilty in having a wardrobe of garments of different weights, warmths, etc. and layering them. Allows you the freedom to adapt to circumstances: some areas being drier than others, variations from day to day, changes in weather and seasons, etc.
  3. Dry dehydrated skin: what seems to work best is sandwiching a layer of water under a layer of oil, and if need be repeating in double-deckers, triple-deckers, etc.

On days when the weather is colder, drier, and/or windier:

  • FACE & EYES: add a layer of shea butter or other heavy waxy stuff as required
    • application: small dab, rubbed and warmed-up between fingertips,  dotted onto drier (and thinner-skinned, more delicate) areas such as forehead, cheekbones, bridge of nose, and around the eyes, and smoothed in.
      If you see my forehead in real life, you’ll laugh at my calling it “delicate” in reference to anything other than skin. Flattering people have referred to it as “aristocratically Renaissance” or further physiological evidence of pre-Raphaelitism. Yes, it’s a five finger forehead: and what would be more appropriate for me than being a five-finger-er? If I were a guy, I’d be a slaphead egghead…

When skin is drier, which might or might not coincide with whatever’s going on with the weather: using one or other or some combination of the following assorted stuff in the emergency tool-kit. All over or localised dry patches. They’re listed in approximate order of increasing seriousness:

DRIER: FACE

  • Chagrin Valley Whipped Squalane Mousse
    = shea olein + olive squalane + olive butter + jojoba oil; see ersatz (3): moisturiser
    Alas, it’s no longer unscented.
  • some other moisturisers I’ve used and abused here: assorted emollient / barrier-repair creams, such as: Avène Tolérance extrême cream, A-Derma Skin Care Cream, (note: these two are not fully cruelty-free any more), CeraVe lotion or creamVanicream, Vitec (same MF), Elave cream, Allergenics cream and assorted other UK and European ones not available here in Canada, at least not in actual real live shops here (Barefoot Botanicals, Faith in Nature, Green People, Lavera Neutral range, Urtekram, etc.), Ayelet night cream (Etsy), several Derma E creams, Dr.Hauschka rose day cream & eye contour balm (yes, scented; yes, weirdly, they work on my skin), ShiKai borage dry skin therapy lotion or hand cream (yes, all over, face and eyes too), Weleda Soothing Almond cream, Weleda‘s baby Calendula moisturisers, their Weather Everything cream/balm, and their Calendula Ointment.
  • under moisturiser, or mixed in with it: the DIY multi-purpose skin oil or some heavier oils (more further down…)
  • or argan oil (Mountain Rose Herbs, but brand doesn’t matter–exact same stuff).
    On why it is NOT worth spending lots of money on Josie Maran and suchlike (OK, unless suffering from the matchy-matchy variant of OCD), because argan oil = argan oil = argan oil: see review (2011-08-12) and update (2011-08-27).
  • LIPS & EYE-AREA: heavy-duty balm, including some lip balms
    • plain refined shea butter
      Many/most prefer raw unrefined shea, but my skin doesn’t so far. Irritated by octyl methoxycinnamate and (many, but not all and not in all concentrations) other cinnam- chemical relatives, inc. cinnamic acid in unrefined shea butter
    • DIY multi-purpose balm
      = plain refined shea butter (NOW; refined without hexanes, FWIW) + extra-virgin olive oil beeswax (both = Badger unscented balm), melted together in a bain-marie. Many/most prefer raw unrefined shea, but my skin doesn’t so far. Irritated by octyl methoxycinnamate and (many, but not all and not in all concentrations) other cinnam- chemical relatives, inc. cinnamic acid in unrefined shea butter
    • Badger balm, unscented version in the tin
      = extra-virgin olive oil beeswax
    • Dr Bronner’s Magic All-One Balm, unscented “naked” version
      = jojoba oil + beeswax + avocado oil + hemp seed oil + vitamin E 
    • Madre Bees unscented organic lip balm
      extra-virgin olive oil beeswax + hemp seed oil + vitamin E
    • (eye area) Weleda calendula ointment + (lips) Weleda Everon lip balm

REALLY DRY & SCALY, esp. EYE AREA

  • soak pads (cotton-wool, reusable cotton pads, a small towel, or similar) with cool liquid: water or witch-hazel hydrosol. Or use two old teabags (black or green tea; or indeed certain others such as rosehip or chamomile), soaked in cold water, one over each eye. Hold over closed eyes for a while. Relax.
  • apply raw honey to scaly bits: I’ve used manuka honey with a UMF of 10-15 for this (higher is probably best reserved for more serious medical use), and also local raw unpasteurised etc. honey. Sometimes mixed with a dab of neem oil. Yes, neem smells totally rank: but it’s good stuff.
  • redo the cool compresses thing (first step above); if very dry and scaly, thin slices of beeswax /straight honeycomb can help.

DRIER: BODY

Additional or changing moisturiser, used as needed: on hands, feet, and any dry patches; in ascending order of severity and seriousness, this is the arsenal:

  • hands, nails, cuticles: Prevex Protectant Cream
    = petrolatum + dimethicone
  • if being flaky and eczematic: borage seed oil (the edible capsule form: take one, cut it open, apply oil): either used alone or added to the usual multi-purpose oil, as circumstances demand…
  • add in hemp seed oil to the oil mix (other oils used too, previously; borage and hemp are the current “emergency” oils living in the fridge)
  • an emollient cream
  • Aquaphor on hands and cuticles: doing that at the moment, usually just evenings, as my hands are In A State
  • a heavy waxy balm: ex. shea butter, BalmBalm, Jason 25,000 IU vitamin E cream (great on elbows, knees, feet; warning–not face!), Badger unscented balm
  • olive oil rub and soak (hands, feet)
  • armpits: layer of zinc oxide baby butt paste

EVEN DRIER

  • CLEANSER (all over): substitute an emollient cream
  • MOISTURISER: substitute heavier-duty unscented minimalist emollient cream/balm a.k.a. barrier-repair cream

DRIER STILL, AND/OR FLAKY AND ECZEMATIC

  • substitute hemp (the food/edible one, in refrigerated section of shops, keep refrigerated at home) or avocado or borage seed oil (the edible capsule form: take one, cut it open, apply oil) for the multi-purpose oil; adding a layer under moisturising cream.
  • on top: substitute an emollient cream for usual moisturiser
  • neem oil (any brand: currently using Alaffia): great on all manner of small sore bits & bites, zits, irritation, etc. Stinky though. Apply only a tiny amount, and directly to the affected area.

VERY DESICCATED INDEED

  • upgrade moisturiser to plain shea butter or other really seriously hard-core heavy waxy stuff
  • more layering. Spray/slap on an extra layer of water on top of moisturiser, then seal it in with shea butter or other heavy-duty waxy stuff. Yes, I have been known to use Aquaphor or plain petrolatum, any brand. The stuff is damn good on sealing seriously flaky skin. I’ll avoid it in favour of a sustainably-produced plant-based alternative when possible, but not all things are possible at all times and in all circumstances. I’ll avoid Vaseline for Unilever reasons, unless it’s the only thing going and a life/death situation for skin.

See also: in case of emergency.

EXTRA STUFF (3): DRY HAIR

Main thing:

PRE-WASH CONDITIONING TREATMENT

  • virgin coconut oil (organic unrefined etc.; current one is Dr. Bronner’s, chosen as it’s also fair trade)
    • used anywhere between every wash and every two weeks or so, depending on state of hair
    • applied to dry hair, all over except the scalp itself, usually for 1 hour. Less than 45 minutes doesn’t give it time to absorb; I’ve left the stuff on successfully for up to 3 hours before washing. Longer, and there’s no further difference or my hair is flat (hair is fine but thick; on coarser hair, leave on for longer; some may be able to leave it on overnight). Then wash hair as usual.

Other things: not done any of the stuff below in ages, as the VCO has worked impeccably over the last few months, and current shampoo and conditioner are keeping hair in decent nick. But keeping this stuff below up on here in case it helps anyone else.

DEEP CONDITIONING

Using one with protein and oily goodness. The John Masters Organics Bare conditioner has a fair amount of both, as do Aubrey Organics GPB conditioner and Beauty Without Cruelty moisturising conditioner. Left on for longer than I usually do with conditioner. And/or the BWC leave-in conditioner, left on.

THE PRINCESS SHINYLOCKS SPECIAL TREATMENT

Apple cider vinegar rinse: diluted 1 part vinegar to many parts water, in an old “sports top” plastic water-bottle (any squeezy bottle will do). Using any brand of vinegar, whatever we’ve got currently in the kitchen.

My use of this is limited by my skin’s tolerance-levels: even diluted:

  • semi-DIY clarifying shampoo: mixed in palm of hand with regular shampoo, on my second shampoo, then applied to hair from there
  • final rinse after conditioning (to be honest, not done this in a very long time)

Sometimes I blow-dry my hair properly, for extra smoothness and shininess:

  • The Body Shop Brazil Nut Define & No Frizz + vented brush + an eco-friendly hair-dryer (it’s green and white, made from recycled materials, recyclable, and low-energy).
    Leaving hair to its own devices until nearly dry, and not combing or brushing through afterwards, as that is one of my paths to guaranteed frizz. Then rapidly blow-drying the curlier bits. This doesn’t happen very often: I’d like to say it’s because I’m such a virtuous energy-saving person sacrificing my frizz-free-ness to the greater good of the planet, but really, it’s just that I can’t be arsed.
    Note: works for a limited time, my current record is about 3 hours, before hair starts to revert to type. Better solution = pro job from hairdresser, lasts a day or two. Another option might be straightening irons but I’m against and will not use (reasons: not that good for hair, a probably irrational fear of burning (if someone else is doing it, anyway: if klutzy me, then perfectly rational), energy consumption, limits to the reasonableness of vanity & folly-praising, and anti-racist & feminist discomfort about not embracing and celebrating non-straight hair).

PRE-WASH CONDITION

A sort of variation on the condition-wash-condition thing; seems to help hair dryness and frizzliness. Has more effect—hair not drying out so much between washes—than applying oil at the conditioning stage, either before conditioner or mixed in with it.

DRY

  • DIY hair oil
    • current product: coconut oil
      (not used as below; see further up)
    • previously: various oils, using the multi-purpose oil (the skin one), a DIY hair oil, etc. The hair oil has been known, over the years, to be a separate entity from the multi-purpose oil (which is then technically just skin oil, really, and not all that multi-purpose) and to contain varying combinations and proportions of the following oils, being ones that are supposed to actually do something to hair all the way to the core: argan – avocado – jojoba – meadowfoam seed – olive (and coconut, he current one)
      —any brand: usually something cheaper and decent like NOW, Garden of Wisdom, Mountain Rose Herbs, etc.; for avocado or olive, a food/cooking one
    • decanted into a plastic bottle, with a plastic flip-top or pump top, living in the shower
    • application: wet hair with warm water and oil it up pretty much everywhere except the scalp (unless it’s dry: then it gets oiled too). Coil up hair and secure. Leave it be for at least 15-30 minutes (meanwhile: breakfast + cup of tea). Wash and condition as usual.

DRIER

  • leave oil on for longer, for at least an hour or so. Usually at the weekend.
  • if scalp is dry: oil rub, often with borage & meadowfoam seed oil
  • if hair is feeling dry after it’s been washed and has dried: a drop of meadowfoam, avocado, or argan oil on ends and any frizzy bits.

DRIER STILL

  • olive oil as a pre-wash treatment, rather than the usual DIY hair oil; very occasionally warmed up slightly as a hot oil treatment (errrm, around about twice a year max); left on for longer than usual. This does leave (my) hair a bit greasy and heavy, though.
  • avocado oil, as above
  • whether or not hair’s being dry, sometimes I’m being really scuzzy and/or simply don’t have time to wash and dry my hair. I’ll get another day out of the hair by doing a dry shampoo. Done this previously with actual dry shampoo; and with various fine-grain baby/dusting powders. Silk powder is a very good one for this purpose. Brush hair–apply to roots and scalp, basically the greasy bits–leave on for 5-10 minutes–brush out

POST-WASH LEAVE-IN STUFF

Depending on dryness and ambient humidity or lack thereof:

  • oil: currently coconut
    • also used multi-purpose oil on the ends, fly-aways, etc.
    • extra-virgin olive oil
    • avocado, or hemp seed if my skin and hair are being very dry and skin’s in flaky (or indeed fully eczematic) mode
  • other stuff used previously, some of which malingers in a cupboard just in case:
    • John Masters Organics Shine On leave-in treatment
    • leave-in conditioner such as Beauty Without Cruelty or John Masters Organics
    • a moisturising skin cream, such as Allergenics emollient cream
    • balm, such as the DIY one
    • a silicone-y serum, if it’s very humid and/or I’m blow-drying; my hair gets weighed down by these horribly, and I am prone to irritation on the neck and other surrounding skin, so this is a last resort. A compromise is to use a skin-moisturiser containing silicone. Or, my usual one, personal lubricant…
      Usually leaving hair until nearly dry, then rapidly blow-drying the curlier bits. This doesn’t happen very often: I’d like to say it’s because I’m such a virtuous energy-saving person sacrificing my frizz-free-ness to the greater good of the planet, but really, it’s just that I can’t be arsed. Ditto on the oil vs. oil+silicone experiments.

(4) MAKEUP, LEVEL ABSOLUTE ZERO

In case of skin emergency:

  • MASCARA
  • and no other makeup
  • no, nothing at all. Nothing! Nada!
  • (I tend not to have the energy, will have mind/attention on other things, and may well be asleep especially if doped up on whatever is being used to combat whatever the affliction might happen to be)
  • in an ideal world: if I were very very very ill indeed, some kind soul would come in to hospital and tint my eyelashes for me, and maybe pop on a teeny hint of lipstick & blusher, and help me look/feel more human and less like a lump of health-service-property meat 🙂

and yes we CAN… wear pink

(5) MAKEUP, LEVEL FOUR: UNUSUAL EXTRA STUFF

DEFCON 3 status. All-out conventional war.*

Sometimes I wear more makeup. Very rarely. The most recent occasions have been weddings, job interviews, and other situations which involved Meeting The Public (and/or other Strangers) and having to look more “groomed” than usual. Don’t ask; I disapprove, but Toed The Line out of politeness for hosts and occasion, to protect others from the embarrassment of being scared by pallor. Though it is nice when other people are nicer to you because they think you’re ill; then again, probably won’t nail you the job if prospective employers think you’re fragile, potentially problematic, consumptive, etc.

MASCARA

  • same as other levels

EYELINER
(tightlining)

  • same as Levels Two & Three

EYE CONCEALER

  • same as other levels, plus as needed, Laura Mercier Secret Concealer in #1

FOUNDATION:

I loathe and despise foundation, but sometimes there’s these weird social obligations to use the damn stuff. This is about the best one I’ve found. I can’t use silicone-based foundations (alas, the otherwise lovely FaceAtelier had to go…), and a host of other ingredients in around about every one on the market irritate my skin, and that’s even before we’ve tried to match my ≤NW05 skin plus occasional freckles (which I don’t feel any urge to expunge).

CONCEALER:

  • um, uncertain, whatever’s lying around. There may stil be some Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage somewhere. Not checked in forever.
    • applied using an EcoTools mini short-handled eyeshadow brush, sold in multi-pack and very fine indeed.

BLUSHER:

  • Silk Naturals in Petal (loose powder)
    • applied using old Clinique mini blusher brush
  • or Silk Naturals Cream Blush in Tickle
    • applied to back of hand, and from there using finger-tips

EYE SHADOW:

  • um, well, about once in a blue moon I’ll use something neutral but vaguely sparkly, from a bag of assorted Silk Naturals ones. Things like Purr, their Stila-Kitten-alike

LIPSTICK:

  • Lipstick Queen Invisible Lip Liner and their Medieval

CONSEQUENT CHANGE OF EVENING CLEANSER: instead of usual cleanser, substituting one of The Things That Live Under The Bathroom Sink. Next to bathroom cleaners and other regular undersink-dwellers, so care must be taken not to get mixed up. If tired or other reason for being uncoordinated, I’ll avoid them all so as to avoid accidents, swipe some witch-hazel around, and go to bed:

  • a creamy cleanser
  • or a cleansing oil

This lot (with the exception of the Levels One & Two stuff) lives in the Level Three Makeup Box; deep in an Infrequent Use drawer, behind an old dismantled lamp, some old linens (used for mopping up spillages, for under wet rain-boots, etc.), and a couple of old spare raincoats used for visitors coming here ill-prepared from drier climes; and that drawer is in a clunky piece of furniture behind the rack for air-drying laundry. The box: reusing a usefully-shaped old one; I left on one label and added another, together summing up my views on fecking & blinding makeup–hmmm, and maybe literally not just figuratively in both cases–and its social obligations:

Other stuff known to be living in that box; there may be more in the lower depths:

  • unscented dusting powder for a layer 3 to the deodowich, as needed: if exercise, hot sweaty weather, or wearing a Summer Frock: to ease the chafing of the inner thighs (my thighs aren’t dramatically thunderous, but I’m prone to sweat-rashes and a lady civilised socialised human being shouldn’t really scratch itches in public): arrowroot powder, rice powder, silk powder, assorted baby powders
  • Dr. Hauschka silk dusting powder stuff, for use as body powder (see above) and as dry shampoo
  • Sephora twist-up retractable self-sharpening eyeliner in brown
  • NYX retractable eyeliner in Bronze
  • Stila smudge pot in Bronze
  • Stila smudge stick in Lionfish
  • Silk Naturals cream eyeliners in Mahogany (brown) and Amethyst (deep plum)
  • Silk Naturals lipsticks: Aria (MLBB pink, but there’s something not quite right about this shade on me right now: seems dulling), Birthday Suit (demoted from everyday lippie: looks brown on me right now), Soft (pink), Sweet Nothing (plum, tricky to use unless with a very light touch, otherwise you get late ’80s raisin); plus a handful that didn’t work out and that I haven’t yet swabbed with alcohol to clean them before donating them to the local women’s shelter
  • two old blushers, for colour-comparison purposes: Clinique Iced Lotus and Korres 16 Pink
  • archaic Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, their cream-gel eyeliner in Black Honey, Maybelline eyeliner in Eggplant/Aubergine: being kept for colout-matching/-replicating
  • old mascaras, kept for brush-comparison purposes: Clinique Long Pretty Lashes, Clinique Lash Power, Maybelline Lash Discovery, Origins Fringe Benefits, Bobbi Brown Perfectly Defined, Urban Decay Cannonball WP, Fresh Supernova, Lavera, Beauty Without Cruelty
  • samples/minis of various things that I haven’t yet thrown out: Bobbi Brown tinted eye brightener in Light Bisque (keeping for shade-matching purposes)
  • ever-expanding sack of free Silk Naturals eye shadows and other colour cosmetic glittery gaudy delights: no use to me, unsure whether I’m keeping them for posterity or for a bling-loving younger relation or for adding to swaps *shrug*
  • assorted brushes and old sponges in a ziplock bag, out of sight out of mind (cleaned properly first)

SOME OF THAT STUFF IS GOING IN THE BIN and has been struck through: reference staying, so that you can read through/under the line, for colour-reference purposes for myself and others. It’s a symbolic strike-through.

Reason: Clinique, Bobbi Brown, Origins: see posts on here from around 2012-02-17. Korres: subsequently (subsequent to my buying that blusher) bought by J&J corp, so I’m not rebuying from them while they’re under their current controllers.

Yes, most of this really ought to go in the bin sometime soon anyway. The powdery stuff won’t go off, and should keep OK in the dark; other items will (or have) go(ne) off, and some colours may have degraded. Probably no fungi, as-yet unmet household pets, or Lurkers in the Deeps. I’ve now given away all my old nail-varnish; I wore it so seldom that it hardly seemed worthwhile, and they were useful colours (Revlon neutrals and their gorgeous blue-red Cherries in the Snow). I mainly wanted rid of the stuff for hippy environmentalist reasons; from manufacture and formulae—yes, even Big 3 Free ones like I’d been using for aaages—to effects on nails and skin, and the cotton-wool pads and solvents used to remove the stuff. Good riddance. Need nails to look polished? Just buffing them then rubbing in heavy-duty balm.

*There is a DEFCON 1 status, but it’s only ever appeared very rarely, not for a long time, and only ever applied by other people from their own kit. In very unconventional carnivalesque situations requiring drag-like extreme disguise, war-paint for going into battle, and often masks and other incognito devices suitable for engaging in debauchery.

Also rarely used due to the PITA of getting all the crap [and crud] off the next day/day after that/some point afterwards and consequent skin irritation and general grumpiness of coming back down from such outrageous raging–errm, well, circumstances.

Furthermore: older, wiser, learned years ago that DEFCON 1 is all most unnecessary for its intended purposes anyway. Gingers of the world: we’ve already got plenty weapons of mass destruction at our disposal–if that’s the game being played–even at DEFCON 5. “Nod nod, wink wink, say no more.”

Image at top: Wikipedia article on gingerol

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20 comments

  1. mej5s

    It looks remarkably similar to the formula(s) used in their other products (lotion, hand cream) – does it share their characteristic odour?

    • gingerama

      Nope on odour.
      Formula: It’s nearly identical to the 24 hour face cream, which is cheaper; I have a slight preference for the texture of the eye version (plus I got three in a bargainaceous multi-buy, which made it about the same price anyway…).

      • gingerama

        p.s. (a loooooong while later): not used this in a while, and not since I had some irritation, which has been nailed to diazolidinyl urea: turns out I get irritation from that and imidazolidinyl urea, plus a couple of other alternative-to-parabens preservatives.

        UPDATE: nope, this stuff *should* be OK: my issue is diazolidinyl urea in combination with imidazolidinyl urea; d.u. alone in low dose *should* (in theory) be OK on me. That’s theory. Current practice remains good old trial & error combined with observation, monitoring, and careful note-keeping on progress and results. Blue Lizard sensitive sunscreen is fine, for example.

        Phenoxyethanol is still cool (yay, go my skin: I know quite a lot of people have had reactions to it), as are methyl-, ethyl-, propyl-, and butylparaben.

        For the record: nope, I may be a hippdippy granola type, but I’m not buying the paraben fearmongering cos of its basis on misreading a limited study. Limited re. proof:
        – coincidence vs. correlation vs. causation;
        – unproven source/origin (topically applied vs. ingested products);
        – not longitudinal (looping back to the proven cause issue).

        There will be a post All About The Parabens at some point soon. In the meantime, I refer readers to Colin’s Beauty Pages: he has a number of fine posts about parabens (and, as on this site here, a lovely friendly search-box: thanks be to the Google Gods).

    • gingerama

      Nope–still using Dermalibour on the Pits of (hopefully not too Earthy) Delight. I ran out of the cleansing bar, have reordered from France, package hasn’t arrived yet. Meanwhile, I’d stocked up on Everyday Shea last time they were on sale at WF so I’m getting through some of that. I like it, as ever. On which: mustn’t forget, had another failed exprriment to report (an attempt to find a solid equivalent to ES).
      Are you looking into Pierre Fabre? Or should I drop them a line to see what the official response might be? I’ll also copy-paste some of the Green Board stuff over on here; would iy be all right if I quote you–properly attributed as usual (plus I should put in a link to mej5s-the-blog)? Unless you’d prefer a new inappropriate pseudonym…

  2. mej5s

    I am indeed looking to Pierre Fabre – emails to both Avene US (and Canada) and le siege social en France already sent dans les deux langues.

    Will update MUA with the info and will add here as well (under appropriate post)

    Is it cheaper to buy the A-Derma bar sur internet or at the pharmacy here? I would imagine the former given HST, frequent stocking issues, Canadian gouging.

    • gingerama

      Ace, thanks for that! A-Derma: can be cheaper here, if it’s on special offer. My local LDs have all been out of it. Maybe MUAers or reading MUAer blogs like this one…
      Post coming up tomorrow re. alternative cleansing bars. Etsy actually looks like a good bet, and I’ll be looking into local handmade ones from around here too. Big issue is finding ones where they’ve added the shea butter towards the end of the process, to the mix, rather than into the saponifying blend earlier on (if the latter, doesn’t make the soap any moister: IME, it’ll still be exactly dry and drying however many rich unctuous oils have been used). Other big issue is as ever an absence of unnecessary irritating silly blinking EOs.

  3. Lab Muffin

    Just found your blog – love it! So informative and sensible, a breath of fresh air after all the fear-mongering, natural-for-the-sake-of-natural, anti-science, pro-common-sense-over-actual-evidence crap that’s out there 🙂

  4. anna3101

    Personally I’m not using Pierre Fabre because they also make innovative medicines = testing on animals. If I buy cosmetics, I prefer to buy them from a cosmetic-only company (or cosmetic-and-supplements but with a non-testing policy).

    And I have just heard that Revlon is now also on a black list. It doesn’t surprise me that much and I’m using only Benecos for my make-up anyway, but it is sad that all the big corps are going that (Chinese) way…

    By the way, thanks a lot for the information on seasonal allergies. I have already heard about honey but the rest was news to me and I will try it next spring.

  5. anna3101

    Oh, and also big thanks for the information on supplements that you gave me some time ago. I was so sure that supplements also have to be tested and then I wrote some emails as per your advice and it turned out there are plenty of companies in Poland that produce supplements and even medicines without any animal testing. One company was even polite enough to explain when exactly the animal testing of medicines is required by law and when it is not. I also had a chat with my doctor about it and he confirmed the information. So next time I have to step away from my “try to be all natural” life and take some pills, I will not feel as guilty as I did before. There are some cruelty-free choices out there – not always, but yet…

  6. 交友

    First of all I would like to say fantastic blog!
    I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.
    I was interested to find out how you center
    yourself and clear your head prior to writing. I’ve had difficulty clearing my thoughts in getting my thoughts out. I do enjoy writing however it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes tend to be wasted just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or hints? Thank you!

    • gingerama

      1. Do you have an idea / thought / something to write about?
      If YES, proceed to stage 2.
      If NO (or, as you put it, “I’ve had difficulty clearing my thoughts in getting my thoughts out”), you won’t be able to write (and shouldn’t) until you do. Remain at stage 1 until that happens.

      2. Sit down.

      3. Write.
      Say it in your head as you write. Some people speak out loud. It’s a communicative activity, after all. There’s no need to “clear my thoughts”, “waste [time] trying to figure out to begin.” That’s part of stage 1: do you have a point to make? something to say? If you don’t (or, as you put it, you can’t “center yourself and clear your head prior to writing”), then shut up till you do. If you do, speak. Just like when talking with real human beings in real life.

      4. Edit, rewrite, unwrite, re-rewrite, etc. as required over the next while.

  7. Exhincciz

    Malaria is a completely life-or-death malady that can sometimes denouement in death. Although gone in United States, infections are carried around travelers visiting Malaria-endemic regions esp. sub-Saharan Africa resulting in on the verge of 1500 malarial deaths every year. Nearly 35 countries (30 in Africa and 5 in Asia) piece 98% of worldwide Malarial deaths. In information in Africa, Malaria ranks second at worst to HIV/AIDS as cause of cessation by catching diseases. [url=http://doxph.org#doxycycline-online]DoxPh[/url] Doxycyline is actually a tetracycline antibiotic created in the sixties. It had been the fundamental identical a broad daylight anti-biotic to be authorized during the U.S. Grub and Drug Administration. Doxycycline should under no circumstances be against before kids, except if specifically given by a medical doctor. While getting edit out your hickey outbreaks may be the pre-eminent proper acne sufferers utilize doxycycline, it needs to no more than be cast-off should you suffer with initially attempted a handful treatments and all over the piece acne treatments first.

    • gingerama

      I’ll bear this in mind the next time I encounter any kind of physical change whatsoever that looks vaguely acne-like. However small. Especially if it’s small. My gods, maybe I’ve had malaria all this time and not known? OMFG.

      And a very merry Christmas and happy New Year to you too.

  8. Ps3 Repair Guide

    Wonderful blog you have here but I was curious if you knew of any discussion boards that
    cover the same topics talked about here? I’d really like to be a part of community where I can get suggestions from other knowledgeable people that share the same interest. If you have any recommendations, please let me know. Cheers!

    • gingerama

      I’m approving and replying to your comment, just in case “Ps3 Repair Guide” means something else in, say, a language of the Finno-Ugric group.
      Yes: see links. Especially these ones on titivation. MakeupAlley of course, also the other assorted skin fora. And their and skin’s own flora and fauna in all its beauty and bounteousness.

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