1. Crazy Rumors Au Natural 100% natural vegan lip balm

    image

    Searching for a good vegan lip balm was one of my biggest beauty “problems” until recently. I’ve tried different brands from local natural cosmetics manufactures to commercial names like Merry Hempsters. I finally found a great lip product and ended my search with Crazy Rumors Au Naturale balm.

    It has no flavor, making it ideal for usage in every situation and with every makeup product. It’s extremely nourishing but not greasy at all. The texture is amazing - stays waxy all the time, doesn’t dry easily, there are no clumps at the top and doesn’t melt easily on high temperatures like some more natural DIY balms. Also, the twisting mechanism seems to be working perfectly after a whole month of everyday usage.

    There is 4,2 g of product and the price is 2,77 US$ on www.iherb.com, where I purchased it (the price on their official website is 3,49 US$).

    The ingredients are: 100% Natural Ingredients (the good stuff): *Extra virgin olive oil, macadamia seed oil, *shea butter, candelilla wax, soy wax, jojoba oil, carnauba wax, vitamin E & rosemary leaf extract *Organic

    I’m very happy with this - it does what it’s suppose to; simple and clean. Love the packaging too! I plan to repurchase it again as soon as I finish my first tube. There are so many different flavors in the range but I don’t know if I’ll purchase them since I’m not a huge fan of flavored lip products (there are hard to combine with other scented products and tend to get too overpowering of boring over time).

     

  2. Beautiful roses from my mom’s rose garden and some fruits and home made stuff like watermelons, melons + carob, rose & lemon mixtures. Summer is so tasty and fragrant!

     

  3. Vegan goulash - cheap, simple, fast and delicious!

    My sweet sister made this dish for me last summer and I was really pleased with it. I wrote down the recipe so I decided to share it with you guys. It’s really cheap and simple since it’s made from ingredients we use almost daily in our kitchen, it takes 30 minutes max to make it and it’s really delicious (which also depends on your seasoning choise). :)

    You’ll need:

    - 1 small onion and garlic

    - 1 carrot

    - couple of potatoes

    - canned peas OR green lentils (I used the second choice for this photo)

    - tomato juice

    - cornstarch (optional - this it to make your goulash thicker if you want to)

    - seasoning: salt, pepper, red pepper, garlic powder (if you aren’t using fresh garlic), parsley, basil - these are all open choices, feel free to experiment and add the ones which you generally prefer or have in you kitchen.

    Instructions: Chop the onion and garlic into small pieces (if using fresh one) and put it in a pre-heated pan with some oil (I use organic coconut oil). The carrot and the potatoes need to be chopped as well and put into the pan, with some water (but don’t overdo with the water - it only needs to cover the bottom). Add the seasonings and cook on light fire for 10-15 minutes. You are almost done here, so put the tomato juice with the canned peas and cook it for another 10 minutes until the entire dish is entirely cooked (if you are using fresh un-canned peas you have to cook them longer, just like the green lentils which I used). Note: the goulash needs to be quite tick, like a cream soup (with vegetable chunks, of course). If you add too much water or tomato juice, add some cornstarch to thicken the dish. If you like, you could also add corn, chickpeas, beans, etc. Hope you enjoy. :) 

     

  4. Giovanni Frizz Be Gone Super Smothing Anti-frizz Hair Serum. 

    Well, that was a mouthful. So, I purchased this serum in October last year, after reading tons of great reviews on the net. I was addicted to my Paul Mitchell hair products, and I wasn’t really experimenting much, but I simply HAD to get this.

    The plastic transparent bottle holds 81 ml of product and the price is 5,75 US$ which is quite cheap considering the amount. The first thing I noticed was an unusually strong herbal scent - like the one natural herbal oils have. The product promises: frizz control, more shine, humidity control, conditioning, smoothing, detangling, breakage prevention, extreme heat protecting, more elasticity and color sealing. I haven’t notice ALL of these things at the time I used it, but my ends were smoother, there was less frizz and my hair was soft and shiny. 

    The ingredients list:

    As a noteworthy minus I would mention is the packaging quality. The cap of the pump kept detaching from the bottle, so I had to jam it in violently a few times. All in all, this product isn’t that bad esp for the price, the ingredients are good and it’s cruelty free with no animal derived ingredients. It’s not spectacular like the Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum (which is way more expensive but high quality although it’s cap kept detaching from the bottle too). If you are looking for a cheap but minimally effective hair serum, give this baby a try. I bought mine on www.iherb.com, but I think it could be purchased locally in USA shops and drugstores. You can use my code KPL205 to receive 5$ off your fist order. :)

     

  5. Packing makeup for my summer work trip. I can’t decide what to take with me so I’m taking everything! This is my humble pigment collection: Essence, Kiss My Sass, Geek Chic Cosmetics, Illamasqua, Fyrinnae, Just Pure Minerals, Concrete Minerals, Meow Cosmetics, Lumikki Cosmetics, Detrivore, Femme Fatale, Victorian Disco Cosmetics and a few other indie brands that don’t exist any more.

     

  6. Yesterday’s groceries and beauty shopping.

    The Muller drugstore located on Zagreb’s main square recently reserved the entire first floor for organic and vegan groceries and cosmetics. I was thrilled beyond belief so I went there yesterday to pick up some stuff. I got the Bohlsener Muehle vegan burger mix (already tried it, great stuff and quite affordable; only 3,39 $ = 19 HRK for 10-15 burgers, depends on their size), Alpro Vanilla Soy Milk (great for my morning coffee), Raw Bite Apple Cinnamon bar (omg, this stuff is so delicious, shame they are so expensive - the price is 2,85 $ = 16 HRK), Foodloose Delhi Delight vegan, gluten-free and lactose-free bar with nuts and fruit (not delicious at all and a bit dry) and Lavera Orange Feeling shower gel (this one was a steal because it’s the same price as the regular packaging, but with 33% more). I also got some banans, oranges and peaches for my morning breakfast smoothie. It was so delicious, my hubby stole it from my hand. :D Lavera has some great vegan makeup stuff, like the cream higlighter and 2 in 1 compact cream foundation which I’ll be picking up soon.

    Some of the vegan snacks I also discovered yesterday:

    Lovechock raw chocolate bars, Raw Bites fruit and nut bars, Rice Chips (salted, chilli and teriyaki flavours) and Bohlsener Mühle Cookies. My wallet made a suicide. D:

     

     


  7. The ultimate 100% natural oil absorbing face powder and dry shampoo

    image

    I had extremely oily T-zone since it was 13. At the time, I fought with some serious adolescent acne, esp on my forehead and having an oily scalp/hair too didn’t help at all. Over the years, I tried countless oil absorbing products, both skincare and makeup but rarely did something actually worked (some great products that actually worked were discontinued, like the Essence All About Matt! loose powder and the others were just shitty alcohol-filled liquids that did more harm than good). When I finally started to give up, a few amazing products fell into my hands. Two of them are skincare product (which I am yet to purchase in a full size form) and one of them is a totally simple and natural everyday cooking ingredient - CORNSTARCH!

    Yes, cornstarch or corn flour. I read countless posts about it online and gave it a shot a few months ago. It’s cheap as dirt (1-2$ in most grocery stores) so I had nothing to loose. I been applying it with a flat top synthetic brush after liquid foundation too set and completely blot my oily T-zone. My T-zone it totally matte at least 7-8 hours with it and it doesn’t clog pores, irritate the skin, etc. I do look a tad bit ghostly when I apply it, but that just means I put too much on my brush. It works the same as a dry shampoo, without causing any negative reactions to my scalp like some commercial dry shampoos do (Batiste, too be precise and mind you, I had seborrheic dermatitis on my scalp). Cornstarch is almost invisible on my platinum blonde hair (I’m not sure if it would work on darker hair colors).

    So, to sum it up - the solution was hidden in nature (or at least, my kitchen) all this time! If I only knew about this when I was a teenager, my life would be a bit easier. I’ll be doing the review on those two skincare products I mentioned in the begging, so stay tuned. ;)

     

  8. Summer sunset eyes, an ode to my upcoming summer vacation (or work, to be specific, but hey - I’m an optimist.)

    Products used: Concrete Minerals Electric Eye Primer for the base, Essence WOW It’s Orange! Color Arts Pigment over both eyelids, Sugarpill Cosmetics Loose Eyeshadow Goldilux the center of the upper eyelid, Catrice Gel Eye Liner 010 Black Jack With Jack Black and Essence Crazy Volume Mascara. I’m wearing e.l.f. HD Blush in Headliner for the first time today and I like it a lot since it’s a perfect neutral flushed matte pink that goes great with bold eye makeup. 

     


  9. Vegan zucchini burgers

    Since you guys loved the Vegan chocolate-banana-coconut ice cream recipe so much, I’d decided to add more vegan recipes to the blog. I’ve been experimenting with a lot of stuff lately and I decided to veganise my vegetarian burgers which I make at least once a week. They used to contain 3 ingredients: zucchinis, eggs and bread crumbs. I don’t like eating eggs any more since they make my sick and gassy (just like a lot of diary products like cheese and milk). Eating more vegan and more raw makes me feel better, fuller and also my digestive system works great. So, to cut to the chase - I’ve veganised my burgers. Here’s what you’ll need if you want to try them:

    - half of large onion

    - 2 carrots

    - 1 medium large zucchini

    - 1 red pepper

    Before doing anything, chop the carrots, zucchinis and the onion half into small pieces. Put the pepper into a food processor (blender) and mix with to other ingredients.

    image

    - 1 or 2 tablespoons of sunflower seed and hemp seeds.

    I wanted to add my burgers a crunchy texture, so I added some seeds. You can use any seeds you like chia, flax, pumpkin, etc. I prefer these since they are delicious and full of great nutrients like vitamin E, fiber, zinc, proteins, plant-based omega-3 fats and minerals. Mix them into the rest in a food processor.

    image

    It important not to shred the ingredient too much. I make a crunchy spread which can be used alone, but adding bread crumbs the mixture becomes more dense and easy to mold. Sometimes when it’s too moist or unstable, I put some cornstarch in it too “cement” things a bit more. Also add seasoning of your choice - I keep it simple with some salt, pepper and chilli.

    image

    And finally - all you have to do mold the burgers with your hands (friendly tip: use wet hand to do this and the mixture will adhere less to your skin) and fry them like they’re not tomorrow. Just kidding, you don’t need to deep fry them too much - the beauty of these burgers is that they can be eaten half raw, not overly fried. I use coconut oil since it remains stable on really high temperatures so it’s ideal for frying.

    image

    After 10 minutes of frying, I mash the burgers between slices of bread with vegan mayo and cucumber slices. You can add ketchup, chilli sauce, salad, tomatoes, anything you like really. But be aware: after 3 of these you’ll hardly move because you’ll be too full. :D

     

  10. Metallic eye look featuring Meow Cosmetics Tutankhamun (from the Egyptian Treasures collection) - a beautiful metallic maroon and Sugarpill Cosmetics Goldilux Loose Eyeshadow - molten metallic gold, opaque and long lasting. I also used Concrete Minerals Electric Eye Primer, a bit of Just Pure Minerals Ebony Vegan Eye Liner (matte black) in the outer corners, Essence Crazy Volume Maskara & Too Faced Velvet Revolver and Sexpresso for my brows. (The white crumbs on my brows and eyes is cornstarch, which I use to mattify my oily T-zone. I haven’t noticed it until uploading the photo.)

     

  11. Current makeup favorites. Featuring Catrice, Illamasqua, Just Pure Minerals, Meow Cosmetics, Victorian Disco Cosmetics, Concrete Minerals, Hello Beauty, Golden Rose, Everyday Minerals and Ecotools products.

    Since I’ve dyed my hair blonde again, I can finally wear all those peachy orangey shades of makeup I’ve been avoiding during my short red haired phase. Last few weeks I’ve been reaching for Catrice Defining Blush in Love & Peachy. It’s a pure dupe for Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Rude, but much more longlasting on my skin (Rude used to fade after couple of hours) and cheap as dirt (less than 6 US$, while Rude is 32 US$). The formula is vegan and also contains tocopherol (vitamin E) and ascorbic acid (vitamin C).

    I’ve finally got my favorite eyeshadow primer of all time again - Concrete Minerals Electric Eye Primer. It was reformulated recently and now 100% vegan, plus it does and AMAZING job on keeping my eyeshadow fresh all day.

    I have been using A LOT of mineral eyeshadow lately, completely ignoring all of my palettes. It’s true that mineral eyeshadow gives more pigmentation, depth and awesome effect than regular shadows. Thanks to a friend of mine, I’ve discovered Victorian Disco Cosmetics. She gave me samples of Angry Italian Vampires, I’m 100 Years Older Than You But That’s Okay!, Undercity and Hero Class. All of them are silky, easy to blend and give great color payoff. Just Pure Minerals Snow is a matte opaque white eyeshadow and I’ve been using it a lot to highlight my eyes ,plus it makes a great white eyeliner mixed with a sealing gel.

    Eyeshadow swatches; L-R: Victorian Disco Cosmetics Angry Italian Vampires, I’m 100 Years Older Than You But That’s Okay!, Undercity and Hero Class, Just Pure Minerals Snow. All swatched dry, with no primer or sealer.

    Other powdery products that made their way into this collection are Meow Cosmetics Firefly Bronzer in Teenie Weenie Bikini (it’s been a favorite of mine last 2 years ever since I got a sample baggie and now I’ve FINALLY got the full size), Kiss My Sass Suntan Bronzer (almost matte medium light bronzer which is quite long lasting on my skin) and Illamasqua Pure Pigment in Furore (my all time favorite highlighter, has a bit more vanilla/champagne-ish base color than I’d prefer, but still amazing and lasts all day).

    Golden Rose Velvet Matte Lipstick are a dream. I hardly use my other lipsticks next to these since their are velvety, 100% matte, apply nicely, opaque and not drying at all. I emailed the brand and they told me they don’t test on animals and the Velvet Matte Lipsticks don’t contain any animal by-products.

    Lately I’ve been slightly obsessed with sponge applicators. I’ve tried a couple of these (like the RT Miracle Complexion Sponge) but my favorite so far is the Hello Beauty sponge. It’s quite dense, makes even heavy coverage foundation extra light, blends the makeup effortlessly, is super cheap and could be used many many times. My cat got her paws on it a few times so far and it ended shredded into microns, so I have to hide it on high shelves and she’s not permitted to go into the bathroom again. The 3 of us are moving now, so I wonder if she’ll steal the sponge in the new bathroom. :3

    And finally - makeup brushes. Ecotools has been my favorite brush brand since I started blogging almost 3 years now. They offer super soft, vegan and versatile brushes and I have the most of their range. Everyday Minerals brushes are quite dense, soft and the Flat Top Brush & Angled Blush Brush blend face powders and blushes with ease. My friend said the EM brushes remind her of Sigma brushes when it comes to density, softness and general quality although I’ve never used Sigma so I can’t confirm.

     

  12. Favorite cruelty free & vegan exfoliating products (fast reviews)

    Pai Skincare Kukui & Jojoba Bead Skin Brightening Exfoliator - a gentle but effective scrub, the most gentle one in this bunch. Works great of polishing the skin without making it dry, flacky, sensitive or irritated. A little goes a long way with this and the packaging is gorgeous (like all Pai stuff). It’s expensive (AU $40.00), so if you are going for something more luxurious yet mild, go ahead with this exfoliator. I would also recommend it to sensitive and dry skin. Check the ingredients list on the link + you could also order a sample jar on www.naturisimo.com with any order. 

    Cattier Clay Scrub - affordable, super effective, suitable for all skin types (although I wouldn’t recommend it for sensitive or dry skin). Has aloe vera and white clay, the soft 100 ml tube last for months and months and washes out easily, leaving the skin super smooth (and sometimes a bit red on sensitive areas like my cheeks). Cattier also offers cheap sample baggies for their masks and the scrub, so it’s a good way of testing the product without spending too much money.

    Lush Let The Good Times Roll - the most natural of all and works great for my combination skin. Smells like cookies and the scent last a long time on my skin. A bit grainy if not dissolved with water properly (you apply it on moist face in a small chunk and massage it into the skin with circular motion). Leaves a clean, smooth and slightly dewy skin. I have to be careful not to massage it too hard in because I get easily red in the face. It’s my favorite of the bunch. I’ve been using it for months now and I’ll definitely buy it again. 

    human+Kind Deep Cleansing Cloths - the roughest of them all, ideal for extra dirty/clogged/textured skin, oily skin and also for removing hardcore makeup. They are used wet, with or without a cleanser and leave a super duper smooth skin. The material is machine washable and economic, so you can use these cloths over and over again. The only bad thing is that they got often too rough on my face so I completely switched to the LTGTR scrub. I definitely don’t recommend them on sensitive or problematic skin.

     

  13. Vegan chocolate-banana-coconut ice cream. 

    Ingredients: base - 3 ripe bananas, half of can of coconut milk (most brand sell it in 400 ml cans, so that’s about 200 ml for the recipe) and sweetener (you can use agave juice, rice syrup or unrefined sugar); topping - coconut chips and 1 dark (85%) chocolate bar. 

    Instructions: mix the bananas, coconut milk and the sweetener, pour it in a plastic container and leave it in the freezer for an hour to harden a bit. After an hour, crush the chocolate into tiny bits and sprinkle the top of the ice cream base along with the chips. Leave in freezer for 3-4 hours at least. 

    This amount is enough for 4 servings (8 scoops). If you want a larger amount of ice cream, just double up everything. Also - I used cornstarch or corn flower to give the mixture more density, but that’s totally optional. Hubby says this was delicious and I agree. :3 

     

  14. Channeling 90’s Gwen Stefani with bold red lips (Wet n Wild Megalast Lipstick in Red Velvet), darker brows (filled with Too Faced Velvet Revolver eyeshadow) and bleached pinkish blonde hair tied in tiny rolls. Today I’m making a vegan chocolate-banana-coconut icecream yay! I’ll post the photo and the recipe later. :)

     

  15. Zoya vegan nail polish in shade Adina.

    Zoya has, next to Illamasqua and Nubar, the most quality nail varnishes I have ever tried or owned. I got Adina from a local message board sale and I love its duochrome effect, shifting lavender and mint shades and long lasting formula ever since.

    It can be used alone for a sheer soft look or combined with any other nail polish underneath for different effects. It looks best over dark or pink varnished and its final look depends on that same base color. Adina’s base is a pastel lavender. The minty shimmer is more visible in the bottle than on my nails when applied over a bare nail. The application was totally mess and stress free plus I experience less drying time with it than most nail lacquers.

    The usual price is 8 US$ for 0.50 oz, although most online shops and drugstores in Croatia sell it for the price of almost 18 US$! I’m actually quite interested if the price in USA drugstores in lower than here (probably is but still wondering…). You can find Zoya products on eBay, Naturisimo.com, Lovelula.com and The Nailista Shop (shipping is quite expensive for Europe - 10 euros).

    Overall: great quality, amazing duochrome effect, nice brush, lasts quite long on my nails with minimal tipwear, applies like a dream, dries in no time and is vegan & cruelty-free. Big like! Hope to get more shades in the near future.