Changing My Foundation

Liquid Foundation Reviews

This summer I decided to try out some liquid foundations. It is really hot in Arizona and I like to keep my makeup as light as possible since I will probably sweat most of it off by the end of the day.   I have been extremely happy with my go-to foundations, which have been the Kjaer Weiss Foundation (I wear like porcelain) and Vapour Atmosphere Luminous Foundation (I wear 115).  My love of these tried-and-true products doesn’t stop my compulsion to try new green beauty options.  I was able to order some trial kits online and, while I was traveling this summer, I picked up some foundation samples of product lines that are not sold at my local green beauty store, Citrine Natural Beauty.  It is so hard to buy foundation online without testing out the colors on your skin.

Let’s start with what I look for in a foundation.  First and foremost, it must have clean ingredients.  I don’t want anything that is a known skin irritant, hormone disruptor or harmful ingredient in my foundation.  I feel it is counter-intuitive to apply something to my face to help me feel and look better on the surface while it is harming my body on the inside.  Vanity is not worth risking my health, and there are so many gorgeous products on the market today that have clean ingredients that I don’t have to put my self at risk.   A list of the ingredients I like to avoid can be found here.

Next, it needs to be lightweight.  My skin needs to breath.  I wear foundation to even out my skin and to give me a more polished look.  I don’t like a heavily, made up look.  So, these are the products I tried out…

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The first brand I purchased was Crunchi.  After using up the sample kit, I wrote a full review that you can read here.  Since writing this post, I have purchased a full-size bottle of foundation, primer, and also the CRUNCHI foundation brush.  They are currently selling a foundation sample pack, rather than the trial kit that I had purchased.  The pack contains a sample of their 4 most popular shades.  It appears to be a smaller sample than what I received and it doesn’t contain a sample of the primer, but it should be enough for you to color match and get an idea of how the product works for your skin.

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Next I purchased an INIKA trial kit in light.  INIKA is an award winning Australian brand of certified organic products that uses Australian botanicals and pure minerals to create high performance makeup that also nurtures your skin.  INIKA has one of the highest safety ratings by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) and the Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database.  They have a slew of certifications to verify that they are organic, safe, cruelty free and vegan.  If there is a certification out there, they probably have it.

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One of the many great things about INIKA is that it comes in several formulas to meet a variety of needs.  Whether you like a liquid, baked or loose powder formula, or a multitasking BB cream, they have you covered!  Couldn’t resist the pun, sorry!

INIKA Liquid Foundation with Hyaluronic Acid

INIKA BB Cream

INIKA Baked Mineral Foundation

INIKA Loose Mineral Foundation Powder with SPF 25

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The trial kits contain 2 shades of mineral foundation powders, 2 Liquid Foundation and Organic Pure Primer. This foundation is packed with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and is a combination of moisturizer and makeup. Made with coconut oil, apricot kernal oil and jojoba, it is very hydrating without being oily or heavy.   It not only blends flawlessly to give you a beautiful, natural coverage, but also hydrates your skin at the same time thanks to the addition of hyaluronic acid.  I found this foundation to be just the right amount of coverage that also let my skin breath and look natural.  I also feel it is quite buildable, for if I was going out and wanted a little more coverage or had a red spot that needed some extra foundation.  It has a thicker consistency than the CRUNCHI, but not  by much.  The primer is very similar to the CRUNCHI primer (think SMASHBOX Photo Finish primer) but has the additon of hyaluronic acid.  BONUS!

I tried out the powder formulas and I was surprised at how easy they were to use and how well they blended into my skin.  I prefer a liquid or cream foundation, so I didn’t spend a lot of time with them, but if you like powder formulas, you need to check these out.  If you like a heavier finish, I bet applying this over a liquid foundation would be beautiful with the added bonus of the SPF.  I wish the trial kit came with a sample of the BB Cream because I know that it has to be amazing!  When I finish up the bottle of CRUNCHI, I will definitely purchase a bottle of INIKA.  One can never have too much hyaluronic acid in their routine!

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Another liquid foundation I picked up was Gressa Minimalist Corrective Serum Foundation.  This is probably my favorite of all the foundations I tried.  This is truly food for your skin in makeup form!  It covers my skin beautifully and makes it look flawless without feeling heavy or thick.  Literally, flawless!  It is a liquid to velvet finish that just melts into my skin.  It is made with broccoli seed oil, barberry extract, sea buckthorn, vitamin C, coenzyme Q10 and a proprietary blend of powerhouse botanicals to balance your skin and make it more radiant.  Food for your skin!

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Now, after that declaration, I have a confession to make.  This foundation was a little tricky to work with and took some trial and error to get the hang of it.  When the sales girl was making the sample, she spilled more than she planned into the tiny sample container.  She told me that the amount she put in there would last me weeks!  I scoffed in disbelief!  It was one of those tiny sample containers that you get all the time.  The first time I used it, I dipped my large foundation brush into the sample and started dabbing it on my face.  

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It is a thin, rather oily formula and I quickly learned that it was WAY too much foundation!  It took multiple tries before I was able to appreciate this amazing foundation.  It feels like a serum going on so it may feel a little oily at first, especially if you apply too much like I did.  Once you figure out the correct amount to apply and blend it into your skin, you will see that it melts into your skin like a beautiful serum and leaves your skin FLAWLESS, literally!  I later purchased a bottle of it. I apply 2 tiny drops from the glass dropper onto my foundation brush and that is enough to convert my face to a flawless canvas.  Now you probably think flawless canvas means heavy-looking and peeling foundation.  Quite the opposite!  This formula melts into your skin just like a serum, yet lasts all day, and leaves you skin with a natural finish.  Once I mastered the application, I was hooked! I look forward to trying more products from GRESSA.

If you aren’t sure what color to purchase, you can check out the sample packs available at Integrity Botanicals here.

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I picked up a sample of Sappho New Paradigm Liquid Foundation. I let the sales girl chose the colors that best matched my skin.  I came home with the #4 and #5, which both turned out to have yellow undertones, which my skin does not have.  I have worn  both several times and I don’t feel I can give it a fair review because I wasn’t happy with the color match.  I will tell you that I found this formula to be thicker than the other formulas that I tried and it gives more coverage on first application.  It is rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients, so this would be a great choice if you prefer a medium to full coverage foundation. It blends easily and doesn’t feel heavy, but again I don’t feel I can give a full review since I didn’t give it a fair testing.  I only wore it 3 times and gave up because I wasn’t happy with the shade.

I currently have the CRUNCHI and the GRESSA foundations in rotation.  Once I finish up the CRUNCHI, I will get the INIKA Liquid Foundation, primer and probably the BB Cream as well.

 

 

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If you have tried any of these foundations, I would love to hear your feedback!

 

Do You Feel Crunchi?

CRUNCHI Beautifully Flawless Foundation and Smart Primer

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I always think of Birkenstocks when I hear the word crunchy.  And I mean the old school style, not the recent upgraded styles that have become quite fashionable.  I had a friend that would refer to people as “a little bit crunchy” if they were the stereotypical “tree huggers” wearing Birkenstocks and shopping at the Natural Foods store.  Basically, it is what I have become, except, I will be wearing Christian Louboutin heels.  For me, it is all about the shoes!

But this post is not about THAT crunchy, it is about the new cosmetics company, CRUNCHI.  You will find, however, that there are some parallels.

CRUNCHI was founded by two women, Melanie Petschke and Kelly Weston, who set out to create a new standard for cosmetic safety.  They strive to create cosmetics that are not only made without potentially harmful ingredients, but are effective and perform at the highest level.  If you follow green beauty news, the story is a familiar one…a highly motivated individual or group is affected by cancer and starts to evaluate the effect of toxins on the body.  When they try to find healthier alternatives with the same performance as their conventional skincare or cosmetics, they cannot find what they are looking for, so they create it.  If only I had that kind of entrepreneurial spirit!

So what makes CRUNCHI different from conventional cosmetics?

They are VEGETARIAN/VEGAN – 100% of their products are either vegetarian or vegan. Some products do contain beeswax, so they cannot be classified as vegan.  The beeswax that they use is sourced humanely, is 100% organic and is highly filtered.

CRUNCHI states that the following ingredients are never put in their products:

 

PARABENS TALC
SYNTHETIC FRAGRANCE PHTHALATES
GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT MINERAL OIL
OXYBENZONE/OCTINOXATE SYNTHETIC COLOR
POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL/PEGS ETHANOLAMINE COMPOUNDS (DEA/TEA/MEA)
RETINYL PALMITATE/

RETINOL/VITAMIN A

PETROLEUM INGREDIENTS/

PETROCHEMICALS

FORMALDEHYDE RELEASERS JAPANESE HONEYSUCKLE
PHENOXYETHANOL BUTYLATEDCOMPOUNDS (BHA/BHT)
NANOPARTICLES METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE

You can read their entire list of Blacklisted Ingredients here.  If you want a list of ingredients to avoid in your skincare products, along with their potential harmful effects, you can find it here.

What is my experience with CRUNCHI?  I purchased the foundation sample pack for $10 (+ free shipping) and it included Light (02), Natural (2.5), and Medium (03) along with their Smart Primer.  The samples are enough for me to use for about 5-6 days.  I don’t need a lot of coverage, so I don’t wear heavy foundation.  I also don’t like my foundation to LOOK or FEEL heavy.  I want  to feel like my skin can breath.  I see many of these makeup videos on YouTube and these girls are wearing so much makeup, it just makes my face hurt. If that is how you wear your makeup, you will probably only get 2-3 applications from each sample.  Keep my preferences in mind when you read my review.

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I apologize for that close up of my pale and hairy arm, but I thought you may want to see the color swatches.

Lets talk about the Smart Primer first.  I have tried a lot of green beauty primers and they work great.  But, if you are looking for a SERIOUS Primer, think SMASHBOX Photo Finish Primer, you have found your green beauty match!  This primer not only performs, it hydrates your skin with Jojoba, Avocado, and Rosehip oils.  Talk about getting your cake and eating it too!  You can finally throw that SMASHBOX in the trash.

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On to the Beautifully Flawless Foundation.  First, I tried the Natural (2.5).  I am usually one shade up from the lightest of most makeup line’s colors.  This color turned out to be too yellow for me, so I went with the Light (02) which turned out to be perfect.  This foundation goes on very easily.  I haven’t worn liquid foundation in quite some time and this is thinner than I remember them to be.  I have used green beauty exclusively for quite a while and the only foundations I have used for the last few years have been Kjaer Weis (Like Porcelain) and Vapour Atmosphere Luminous Foundation (115).  KJ is a cream and Vapour is a stick formula.

The CRUNCHI blends beautifully into my skin and has a liquid to powder feel.  It has a matte finish.  It gives me the look of a flawless complexion and still feels light and breathable.  I have read some reviews commenting on the scent.  It has a slight vanilla scent that comes from using REAL vanilla in the formula.  Pleasant when I apply it and not strong enough to think about again during the day.

One of the most amazing results I have found in the few days that I have worn this product is that it doesn’t settle into my fine lines (ok, some not so fine lines too).  I have not found any foundation that I can say that about.  It really is beautiful and flawless.

An added bonus of this foundation is that it is made in the USA and it is conscientiously packaged…glass bottles that can be recycled.

The only bad thing that I can say is that the sample containers are very hard to open and they leak.  Also, the color choices are limited.  Luckily, I found one that works for me!

Once I finish up my current foundation, I will definitely purchase these products, because I AM CRUNCHI!

Brow Raising

EcoBrow Defining Wax

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As I have gotten older, I have noticed that my eyebrows are becoming more sparse.   If only we were all blessed with Brooke Shields or Cara Delevingne eyebrows.  Another one of the evils of aging that we are supposed to accept gracefully.

I guess I am not very graceful!

A strong brow frames your face.  They can actually give your eyes a lift and make your eyes pop.  I need some of that please!

I use my Plume Lash and Brow Serum daily and I have become quite attached to my EcoBrow.  I have tried many eyebrow pencils, powders and gels with the mascara wands…I keep coming back to the EcoBrow.

EcoBrow is a mineral based brow line with a creme to powder finish.  It is a fool-proof way to fill in your lashes and make them more defined.  I have pale lashes and the ends get pretty blonde, especially when I have been in the sun.  The EcoBrow lasts all day and is smudge proof.  I also own the EcoBrow Defining brush which makes application a breeze.  The wax glides on easily and blends into your brows for a very natural  and polished look.

I use the Marilyn shade, because we all need a little “Marilyn” moment in our day!  I can make it as light as I want, or layer it for a darker look.  The pots are small, but they will last you forever!

This is a staple in my makeup collection and my brows have never looked better!