A non-toxic beauty blog focusing on botanical ingredients, honest reviews, affordable options, lifestyle musings, and more than a touch of humor.
"I now look back fondly at those being the most constructive years for preparing me for life in the real world...You have to have pretty thick skin and you have to have big shoulders." - Tom Curley

Monday, October 31, 2016

Why I Broke Up With Green Beauty - Part Two: Budget

Okay, so I don't know about you guys, but I live on a pretty strict budget and I'm no stranger to being broke when unexpected expenses rear their ugly heads. Also, in case you weren't aware, sending my inconsequential thoughts into the blog-o-sphere (do people still use that word? Am I still relevant?) doesn't really pay the bills. Actually, it doesn't really pay anything. I occasionally will get a couple of free or discounted samples, but that's about it. I don't mind, though, because I do this for fun! It also helps me keep track of the products I'm using and how they work for me, and I can always hope that I'm helping out some misguided soul looking for a new product out there.

Which brings me to the second reason I "broke up" with green beauty...


Look, I know that quality skincare costs money. Quality ingredients cost money. Testing, packaging, certification, advertising... it all costs money. But I've gotten to the point where I both want to care for my skin and also still have some cash left over for things like food, traveling, and more food.


Well, maybe. Or maybe I'm just tired of "luxury" products that break the bank while offering nothing of substance as far as skin improvement and product enjoyment goes.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Why I Broke Up With Green Beauty - Part One: Effectiveness

So... Maybe "broke up" is a bit harsh. I didn't really break up with green beauty, but we are seeing other people, and that's okay! I still use a lot a green beauty products (particularly makeup), but I've expanded my skincare routine to include AB products as well. If you're wondering why, here are some of my thoughts.

This is by far the number one reason I switched from an all green beauty routine full of rainbows and plant oils to an AB routine. 


Simply put, my green beauty products were simply not cutting it in this department. When I was in college, switching to green beauty products and crafting a thoughtful skincare routine made HUGE improvements to my skin, particularly in getting my adolescent acne under control. It also encouraged me to think about makeup in a healthier way -- as something I wanted to wear, something I chose to wear, not something I had to wear. For me, ever since entering the green beauty scene, beauty and skincare has been equivalent to self-care, which is something I desperately need every single damn day. As I entered my late 20s, however, my skin started to go a little wacky and demanded more and more care. I'm sure this is due to a number of different factors, including aging, genetics, stress, and starting hormonal birth control again. Then my nemesis appeared... ADULT ACNE.

Cue horror movie screaming.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

A New Leaf

Hey look, leaves! We don't get this in Texas. This is from Vermont.
So, I don't know exactly how to begin this post, but I figured... Hey, it's September! The very beginning of autumn! Turning over a new leaf! That all works together in a clever way, right? Right. Sure.

As you may have noticed, the last time I posted in this blog was June 2014. I don't know that there was really one particular event that made me stop blogging about green beauty, it just sort of... happened. Life got busy. Then life got busier. I still have a huge stack of drafts that I started, but never finished. In fact, I still have product samples that I intended to review, but never did. (Note to self: I should throw those away.) Long story short, life got in the way, and then I started transitioning away from green beauty. There are a number of reasons for that, and it's a trend I've seen in many other blogs, so I figured I might as well address it here.

The good news: I hope to pick up blogging again soon, though with a slightly different focus!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Product Review: Tata Harper Rebuilding Moisturizer

If you've read my previous posts on Tata Harper products, you may be a little surprised to see this review. To be honest, I'm a little surprised, too. Don't beat yourself up about it. The thing about Tata Harper is that I want to like this brand. They have a lot going for them. The ingredients are stellar (and often organic), they're committed to the environment and sustainability, and they're based in Vermont, which is, like, one of my favorite places ever. I'm also -- despite my best efforts -- not immune to bright, pretty packaging and sparkly little buzzwords like rejuvenating and glowing and pore minimization. Okay, so pore minimization is two words, but you get the picture.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Treat Yo' Self

Sorry to leave you guys hanging for so long! It's been a crazy month, dear readers. I do have some good news, though! After months of hard work and interviews, I have been promoted to a new position within my organization! I'm hoping that this new position will leave me with more time, energy, and funding to continue working on this wonderful blog.

I haven't yet decided how I'm going to treat myself in honor of this new stage in my career. I was originally thinking of getting a new tattoo or piercing, and this is something I still want to do, but it may have to wait, depending on some other factors. Namely -- time, money, availability of the artist I want, and the timing of Burning Flipside next month.

I am a firm believer in treating yourself every now and then, so here are a few items I have my eye on!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Product Review: Madison Street Beauty Eyeshadows & Bronzer + SWATCHES!

Okay guys, here's what you've been waiting for... swatches of all of my beautiful Madison Street Beauty samples! Just an FYI - Madison Street Beauty is doing a freaking AMAZING sale right now -- 60% off everything in the store! Unfortunately, this sale ends tomorrow, April 1st, so jump on that soon.

Now, without further ado, the swatches!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

W3LL People Mascara Launch!

 Oh my gosh, you guys! Did you know that one of my absolute favorite green beauty brands, W3LL People, just launched a new mascara? Be still my heart!

It seems like all sorts of wonderful green brands are putting out mascara these days -- RMS Beauty, ILIA Beauty, Juice Beauty, Kjaer Weis, just to name a few -- and I couldn't be happier! Mascara is a notoriously difficult product to transition to "clean." I've heard complaints from even the greenest beauty mavens, and it's one of those dirty products that many people just can't give up.

I've been lucky enough to find several green mascaras that work fairly well for me, but they're far from perfect. One thing that I would love is a bolder, more voluminous look from my mascara. I have long-ish, medium thickness lashes that are lighter in color, so without mascara, there's really nothing to make my eyes pop. I'm constantly jealous of my wife, who has beautiful lashes that are naturally crazy long, thick, and gorgeous! Of course, she couldn't care less about makeup. Such is life.

While I haven't gotten my hands on this new W3LL People mascara (or any of the aforementioned mascaras... a little out of my price range at the moment), I was gifted a green mascara that I've heard good things about from Honeybee Gardens. I'm looking forward to trying that one out and passing the info on to you fine folks.