Check out this 2 minute video about Disgusting Microbeads ! 

If you see beads in our products they are NOT microbeads. They are jojoba beads which are made of Hydrogenated Jojoba Wax and Ultramarines. I make certain my ingredients are cruelty free in every way. NO testing on Animals, environmentally friendly, and Vegan friendly. Our fragrance oils follow the same guidelines and are always Phthalate free. We use Kraft Versa Recycled bags, they are 95% post-consumer and 5% post industrial recycled paper. Every little bit helps.


F is for Frizz-Busters: Oil is Nice, but Crazy-Cat-Lady Hair Needs Silicone

by Liza Herz on 6 January 2012 · 8 comments

More than once, I’ve left the house thinking I look like this, when the reality is more this:

Grey hair is frizzy All. The. Time. Grey hair is porous, wiry and ready to frizz up at the slightest hint of moisture in the air. I live the ultimate worst-case bad hair day, every day. So if a smoothing product works for me, it will definitely tame your non-crazy-cat-lady hair.

conditioning + smoothing

Grey frizz is two kinds of sad. One, it’s weak and brittle. The inner cortex needs nourishment and moisture for flexibility and resilience against breakage. Two, the cuticle, the hair surface that, under a microscope, looks like so many wee scales, refuses to lie flat.

Deep conditioning penetrates to the hair’s interior to strengthen it, and in a small way saves wear and tear on the cuticle. But intensive moisturizing does very little for the hair’s exterior. What really kills frizz dead is silicone — its large particle size smoothes over the hair shaft, making the cuticle lie down obediently so it properly reflects light and looks all glossy and beautifully shiny.

natural oil vs silicone

Here’s where it gets tricky. Many anti-frizz formulas contain natural oils to as well as silicones. But brands prefer to focus on oils and skip the mention of silicones. Understandable, because nutrient-rich argan oil, for instance, is a much sexier ingredient than something inert, cooked up in a lab. But are such oils just there for show? Can natural oils penetrate hair when larger-particle silicone is in the mix?

We took our question to “Left Brain,” one of the all-knowing beauty scientists at The Beauty Brains, for demystification:

“Silicones are in formulas in the form of an emulsion; they do not immediately form a barrier on hair,” explains Left Brain. “In fact, they never actually form a complete barrier on hair so oils can penetrate whether there is silicone in the formula or not.”

Aha. Oils can penetrate even when they’re in a hair-smoothing silicone soup.

dry hair vs frizzy hair

When it comes to just conditioning dry hair, however, Left Brain separates oil from silicone: “If you want to ensure that you are getting the most effect from an oil in a hair product, stick to conditioners,” he says. “And you should look for a product that has the oil listed near the top of the ingredient listing and is devoid of things like silicones, quats (e.g. cetrimonium chloride, stearalkonium chloride, behenmetholsulfate) and cationic polymers (guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride).”

Bottom line: You want conditioning? Go for oil, which penetrates hair to strengthen the cortex and lock in moisture. But for stellar frizz control, get thee to a silicone to make the cuticle lie flat.

Of course too much silicone and you risk greasy-looking, lank hair that sticks to your head in a way that suggests you do not own a mirror. But luckily the newest generation of silicones are no longer stubbornly heavy, so they won’t build up over time to weigh hair down.

frizz-busting oil + silicone formulas

My top six frizz busters include ingredients like cyclopentasiloxane, peg-15 dimethicone and amodimethicone, in conjunction with argan, camellia, coconut or palm kernel oil for a conditioning hit. Consider them crazy-cat-lady certified:

Kerastase Elixir Ultime ($50) — hands-down winner for best fragrance. A little goes a long way, so don’t be dissuaded by the semi-high ticket price.

Shu Uemura Essence Absolue ($68) — hairstylists are all a-swoon about this Japanese cult line and the colossal bottle pretty much guarantees you’ll never run out.

Moroccanoil Frizz Control ($25) — a lightweight version of the grand-daddy of them all. Comes with a spray, but spray into your hands and smooth over hair. You can always add more, but never less.

L’Oréal Paris Nutri-Sleek Smoothing Cream Care ($9) — a conditioner to apply to wet hair after you shampoo. For extra unruly hair, follow with a serum.

Ojon Instant Restorative Hair Serum ($28) — lightweight, and the eyedropper dispenser means you’ll never apply too much.

And finally, if you run out the door each morning in a befrizzed state, the oversized mascara-wand applicator of John Frieda Full Repair Touch-Up FlyAway Tamer ($12) lets you brush down unruly hair easily and instantly.

Touch-Up FlyAway Tamer is one of my must-haves. Another beauty editor loved it so much, she told John Frieda stylist Alain Larivée that she wished it came with a paint-roller sized applicator. Cool, but that would mean a new problem: how could I possibly fit it into my purse?



From the Soap Queen Blog:

Aromatherapy & Pregnancy : The History of Warnings


 In aromatherapy the use of essential oils during pregnancy remains a contentious subject debated by many in the industry.  We get asked about aromatherapy in pregnancy most commonly by those who become pregnant while running their own soap, aromatherapy, spa or personal care product line.   

From Aromatherapist to Aromatherapist you may get varying answers when it comes to prenatal aromatherapy.  Some believe that essential oils should be completely avoided during the first trimester and others believe they should be avoided all together and then there are others that don’t avoid them at all.  I, personally, worked as an Aromatherapist through two of my three pregnancies.  I handled, blended and manufactured using essential oils on a daily basis with no ill-effects on my pregnancy or babies.  I also used aromatherapy for massage, and baths to treat my stress, body aches, fatigue, morning sickness and labor successfully.  To confidently use aromatherapy in pregnancy it is vital to understand the root of aromatherapy warnings and contraindications.  
The fears surrounding aromatherapy in pregnancy are found in historical cases in which essential oils were misused purposefully or accidently.  All of the cases of adverse reactions in pregnancy are related to women drinking large doses of essential oils.  Any responsible Aromatherapist would never suggest that essential oils should be consumed.  In reality essential oils no matter what the circumstances are should never be taken orally. 
Aromatherapists all warn their clients away from pennyroyal essential oil due to a case in the USA in which a woman drank a large dose of pennyroyal in order to induce an abortion that proved fatal to her (Gold and Cates, 1980).  One out of four cases in which pregnant women accidently drank Camphor oil instead of Castor oil resulted in the death of the baby (Weiss and Catalano, 1976).
There has never been a reported case of a woman or baby being harmed by topical or inhalation therapy used during pregnancy or labor.  Another reported cases in which pennyroyal and parsley seed were taken in large doses caused hepatotoxicty which resulted in the death of the baby.  There are two other case in which women consumed the same large doses of pennyroyal (100 to 200 times the recommended topical application) in which both the mothers and the babies survived unharmed. 
It is cases like this that give essential oils warning and contraindications. 
Worldwide a large number of midwives and nurses have become Certified and/or Registered Aromatherapist over the past ten years.  Aromatherapy in the labor and delivery room has been a common practice in England since 1987.  After 22 years of regular use of aromatherapy by midwives and nurses in England one would think that by now if topical and inhalation usage of essential oils was dangerous during pregnancy there would be a case reported by now, but there have been none. 
The most recent case of a pregnant woman consuming essential oils resulted in a midwife losing her job and license, but no harm to the mother or baby.   In North Wales, midwife Sandra Hughes who was trained in aromatherapy mixed some sweet almond oil with two drops of lavender and one drop of lime in a plastic cup and left it by her patient’s bedside.  Her intention for it to be massage onto the patient but after a mix up while she was out of the room the patient drank the blend.  The mother and baby were monitored but suffered no ill effects.  Communication and proper application of essential oils is vital. 
In reality essential oils have been used by pregnant women for thousands of years safely.  Most perfumes on the market use essentials oils or components of essential oils combined with synthetic fragrance chemicals.  Yet you never see a warning on perfume bottles to avoid during pregnancy.  Chemical components of essential oils have historically been used in the production of fragrance oils as well and have caused no ill effects during pregnancy.  For instance, nutmeg essential oil is one of the ingredients used to make Green Tea fragrance oil.  Below you will find nutmeg on the “essential oils to avoid during the first trimester” list, however, it is a component of a common fragrance oil that pregnant women use every day all over the world with no ill effects. 
You will find that the aromatherapy field, in general, has chosen to err on the side of caution. 
Be aware that during pregnancy a woman has a heightened sense of smell.  Always use half dose of essential oils for pregnant women.  The highest percentage of essential oil in aromatherapy products for pregnant women is 2%. Be completely in-tune with what essential oils she finds repulsive or dislikes during pregnancy.  I have found that most pregnant women find essential oils that are highly hormonal distasteful during the first trimester of pregnancy.  My theory is that her body warning her away from essential oils with properties that it does not need at a given time.  I have also found that women crave and adore highly hormonal essential oils when they have PMS or are going through menopause.  It is as if the nose if leading her to oils that it needs at a given time in her life. 
There is no documentation on whether or not essential oils pass through the placenta but because they have low molecular weights and are negatively charged molecules it is feasible to assume that they do.  The placenta acts a barrier to positively charge molecules but negatively charged molecules do cross the placenta (Maickel & Snodgrass 1973) which makes choosing the right essential oils used during pregnancy vital. 
For instance, savin and Spanish sage could be extremely detrimental during pregnancy.  They are not common essential oils used aromatherapy; however, they are a good example of why precaution is used by Aromatherapists.  Savin (Juniperus savina) and Spanish sage (Salvia lavandulifolia) essential oils contain the compound sabinyl acetate which has been proven to have a teratogenic effect (ability to interfere with normal embryonic development) in laboratory animals (Guba 2002). 
Many essential oils are believed to have emmenagogic actions (cause uterine contractions believed to induce menstrual cycle) and are believed to be dangerous to use during pregnancy.  However, many Aromatherapists believe that emmenagogic actions are not enough to affect a stable pregnancy.  The controversy lies in the history of a pregnant woman.  If a woman has had miscarriages in the past it is always best to err on the side of caution and avoid emmenagogic essential oils. 
When buying essential oils always cross check them by using their Latin nomenclature in combination with the common name.  This will ensure consistency and above all safety.  It is critically important to know the difference between various essential oils, for instance, clary sage is very helpful in labor yet sage is contraindicated for pregnancy.  Aromatherapists use Latin nomenclature to identify essential oils for that very reason.  For instance, clary sage is Salvia sclarea and Salvia officinalis is sage.  Using both names to identify and crosscheck your essential oil choices is the best practice to protect your business. 
The safest essential oils to use in pregnancy are the citrus essential oils including; bergamot, lemon, lime, sweet orange, mandarin, grapefruit and tangerine.  They all such low molecular weights that they disperse into the air shortly after application.  There are no contraindications, no safety data and no warnings that are related in any way to pregnancy. 
Occasionally you might find them on a list of essential oils to avoid during pregnancy but that is only when the Aromatherapist has taken every essential oil with a warning and lumped them into the avoid during pregnancy list.  The only warning for all citrus essential oils is that they may be phototoxic which means that they may increase the risk of sunburn when used undiluted.  But since you won’t be using any essential oil over 2% on a pregnant woman you are well within safety limits. 
I highly recommend the use of grapefruit essential oil for massage throughout pregnancy.  It is the only citrus essential oil that is not phototoxic so you even avoid that warning.  It uplifts the spirit, eases the mind, has an astringent property that leaves the skin feeling great, helps with water retention and is generally known as safe in all cases.  If you were to add one essential oil from pregnancy massage grapefruit is the safest, most universally liked essential oil on the market. 
Common Essential Oil Warning for Pregnancy
Emmenagogic essential oils: 
 basil, carrot see, German and Roman chamomile, sweet fennel, clary sage, juniper berry, lavender, sweet marjoram, myrrh, rose, rosemary, peppermint. 
Safe throughout pregnancy:  bergamot, lemon, lime, sweet orange, mandarin, grapefruit and tangerine.
Avoid in first trimester:  palmarosa, sweet fennel, peppermint, carrot seed, nutmeg, bay, anise, cinnamon, sage, myrrh, juniper, lovage, Roman and German chamomile, cajuput, peppermint, melissa, marjoram, rose otto, rosemary, clary sage, vetiver, basil, oregano, black pepper, sandalwood.
Essential Oils to Avoid Completely During Pregnancy:savin, Spanish sage, angelica, calamus, buchu, wormwood, davana, mugwort, mustard, wild basil, calamint, wormseed, brown & blue & white camphor, horseradish, blue cypress, turmeric, bitter fennel, Bulgarian geranium, wintermint, star anise, cade oil, latana, Spanish lavender, bog myrtle, dog basil, Brazilian sassafras, parsley seed, lavender cotton, sassafras, tansy, thuja, dill, yarrow, tarragon, caraway, camphor, broad-leaved peppermint, hyssop, pennyroyal, spearmint, rosemary, tagette.  
photo credit:  Miche Photography

This guest blog was written by author Kayla Fioravanti. She is a Cosmetic Formulator and Registered Aromatherapist. She writes for Demascope Magazine, Les NouvellesEsthetiques & Spa's and NAHA. In addition to that, she is passionate about small business; she went to Washington DC with a committed group of small business advocates to talk about the small micro beauty businesses.