Elegantly Eco

eco beauty, fashion & info

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DIY: 5 Step Home Facial Routine

Every woman I know loves a good facial at the spa. Who wouldn’t? We women work hard and a facial is a nice way to treat ourselves to some much deserved pampering. But facials can get expensive. I also find that doing some basic maintenance once a week can help keep your skin in great condition. That way, you can go in and get a facial only when your skin really needs it. Once per change of season is good in my mind. So this is the 5 Step Home Facial Routine I follow to keep my skin in tip top shape.


  1. Cleanse

I usually do my facial on a Saturday morning so my skin is already clean. But sometimes I do my facials after getting home from work. If that’s the case, then I would remove all of my makeup before doing anything else. I like to double cleanse. I remove most of my makeup with Jane Iredale’s Magic Mitt and then do a second cleanse with a two ingredient cleanser I make at home.


  1. Steam

A good steam opens your pores and gets all the junk out. I personally steam my face for five minutes or more. The length of the steam depends on the condition of my skin. Steam longer if your skin feels congested or looks dull. If you’re new to steaming or you have sensitive skin, you may want to steam for a shorter amount of time until you get used to it. I use a facial steamer like the one above by Conair. I’ve had this steamer for years. You can buy one at most department stores. I bought mine at The Bay. But it’s also available at Shop.ca and Amazon.ca.


  1. Mask

Next up is putting on the mask of your choice. This of course depends on what your skin needs. If detoxing, use a clay mask. If your skin is dry a hydrating mask. If you skin is freaking out a calming mask. You get the idea. Let the mask sit on your face for the appropriate amount of time and then wash off with warm water. Above is one of my favourite detox masks by May Lindstrom, called the Problem Solver. Read my empties post on this mask here.


  1. Exfoliate

After washing the mask off, I like to use an exfoliator. I know everyone says it’s better to exfoliate before you put on the mask. But I actually like to exfoliate afterwards. My skin feels a lot smoother if I use an exfoliator afterwards. Above is a picture of my favourite chemical exfoliator by Pure + Simple. It’s easy to use and gentle on the skin (Read review here).

  1. Moisturize

This is the last step of my home facial routine. After washing the exfoliator off my face I moisturize with a good facial oil like Lavina’s Barbary Fig Seed Oil (Read review here). Then if I’m going out I will put on my facial primer and apply makeup. If I’m staying in I’ll add a facial serum like Pure + Simple’s Pure Skin Face Serum.

That’s it for my home facial routine. What is your home facial routine like?

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Free Thought Fridays: Quote from Roald Dahl

Images from various sources: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4.

“A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts it will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”

Roald Dahl

I came across this quote recently and I love it! I just had to share it with everyone. I have to say that I agree with this quote whole heartedly. I have met people who were physically beautiful and the picture of outer perfection, but had some really nasty thoughts and attitudes. Conversely, I have also met people who looked scary or unfriendly at first glance but who turned out to be the most beautiful person inside. As the old saying goes: you can’t judge a book by its cover. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by finding friends in unlooked for and unlikely places.

What about you? What is your experience with people? Do you agree with this quote?

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Win tickets to the One of a Kind Show! #OOAKX14 @ooak_toronto

ooak calendar listing

If you’ve been following along on my blog you’ll know that I love going to the One of a Kind Show (OOAK). I’ve been going since I was a teenager when my high school art teacher took us there on a class trip. It was small back then compared to what it is now. But I still love it for promoting Canadian businesses that we might otherwise not know about. There are vendors from all over Canada that come to the OOAK show! To read more about the history of the OOAK Show click here. This November marks the OOAK 40th anniversary!

Other lovely things that will be at the OOAK Show.
L to R: Coats by Mary Ellen, Birch plywood clock by Nygaard Design, Mini Fruit Cake Trio by Toque & Tablier, Goats Milk Soap by Liv Simple Farms

So I’m really, really happy and excited to host a Giveaway for 5 Pairs of Tickets to the One of A Kind Show opening on November 27th & going till December 7th. See details below to enter.

Status: OPEN

Prize: 5 pairs of tickets to the One of a Kind Christmas Show

Enter Dates: November 21 to November 27, 2014

Eligibility: International residents.

Winner: TBD


Check out my 2013 post on my must visit booth list here. If you go to the show please say hi to me!

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Product Review: @battysbath Primer, Concealer, Deodorant

All images from Batty’s Bath website.

Facial Primer & Detox Daily Moisturizer

Ingredients: Organic: Cocoa Seed Butter, Shea Butter, Grape Seed Oil, Vegetable glycerol (soy), Japanese green tea extract, and natural: Clays (green, pink, kaolin, moroccan lava), Deionized water, Candelilla wax, Stearic acid, Caprylic/capric triglyceride (from coconut oil), Titanium dioxide (natural oxide), Vitamin E, Rosemary extract, Radish root ferment filtrate (natural preservative).

There isn’t much of a scent to this thick, creamy white primer by Batty’s Bath. It glides onto my skin and provides a nice barrier to the environmental pollutants outdoors. If you read the ingredients list this primer has four (yes that’s right) clays in it! Each clay has a specific purpose. Green is for detoxing the skin, rebalancing oil flow and repairs scars. Pink is for hydrating and skin firming. Kaolin is for “slip” to give your skin a smooth texture so that your makeup goes on flawlessly. Finally Moroccan lava is for rejuvenation, detoxification, toning of the skin, reducing dryness, improves skin clarity and elasticity. With all these clays in there you would think that there might be some colour to this primer but it goes on clear. I was kind of hesitant to try this primer at first as coconut oil tends to break me out. But this primer doesn’t do that to me thankfully. Now that it’s winter here in the great white north my skin really needs a nice thick primer like this one to protect my skin of the harsh temperatures. I also used this primer in the summer and it didn’t make my makeup melt off my face when the weather was humid. It’s really a great all season primer! Those with dry skin will love this primer too. I’ve already repurchased this & will continue to do so.

Cost: $12.00 CAD, 60 g / 2 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

Mineral Concealer in Warm Sand

Ingredients: Jojoba oil, Avocado butter, Sweet almond oil, Aloe, Shea butter, Titanium dioxide, Mica, Cocoa butter, Castor oil, Evening primrose oil, Iron oxide, Zinc oxide, Beeswax, Rosemary extract, Meadowfoam oil, Neem oil, Rosehip oil, Vitamin E.

This concealer is scentless as well. It’s a thick-looking paste in the little plastic tub. But when I dab my finger on it and apply to my face it actually can go on as sheer or as thick as you would like. I use a little bit at a time and build up the coverage I want. The container looks small but don’t be deceived, a single tap of the finger is usually enough for me to get medium coverage. So this little pot will last me a long time. As for colour, despite the name Warm Sand, the colour goes on a bit too white for my complexion. But it does work amazingly well for covering up the dark circles under my eyes and blemishes. As for the ingredients, there’s a lot to approve of in this list. The ingredients read like a role call of what to put on your face if it’s dehydrated and needs some TLC. This concealer didn’t break me out at all, which is a common problem for me. In fact my very sensitive skin was really happy with this concealer. I think I’ll try the next darker colour to see if that’s a better match for my complexion. I hope Batty makes this concealer in a wider variety of colours someday. I’m sure a lot of people would love to get their hands on a concealer like this!

Cost: $12.00 CAD, 5 g / 0.18 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

Natural Deodorant, in Unscented

Ingredients: Coconut Oil, Aloe Leaf Extract, Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Jojoba Seed Oil, Chamomile Flower Extract, Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Essential Oil or Fragrance Oil*, Vegetable Derived Gum, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Vitamin E. *All fragrance oils are phthalate free.

Well since I got this deodorant in unscented, guess what? It doesn’t smell like anything! Go figure. LOL. All kidding aside, I find even if a product says unscented you usually find some kind of scent. If it’s not a natural product it smells like a chemical laboratory to me. This deodorant works for about 12 hours on me. It didn’t begin that way. When I first started using it, the protection would only last for about 8 hours (the length of an average work day). But for some reason it works better on me now. I have repurchased this in Mangoberry and have to confess that I like the scented versions of her deodorant better. The nice thing about this deodorant is that it’s clear, goes on clear, and dries clear. It didn’t stain my clothing. It doesn’t prevent you from sweating so it would be a good idea to wear something that doesn’t show sweat easily. I’ve also bought this deodorant for my dad in Man Musk and Unscented for my mom because I wanted them to stop using the toxic deodorants. They both report that it works well for them. This is important especially for my mom, who has a number of allergies she has to worry about. But she hasn’t had any reactions after using it for months. I will repurchase this and try the other scents to see which one I like best. Besides Unscented, Mangoberry and Man Musk, this deodorant also comes in: Peppermint, Coconut Cream, Cucumber, Margarita/Key Lime, Raspberry and Warm Vanilla Sugar. Just a note though, Batty doesn’t make these deodorants all the time so get them while you can!

Cost: $15.00 CAD, 118 g / 4 oz
Available at: Batty’s Bath
Rating: 4/5

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DIY: Two Ingredient Scrub

I love a good scrub. Doesn’t everyone? But I have to admit it, sometimes I’m lazy and I don’t always want to go out to buy products. So I thought I would share with you all an easy DIY for a scrub. This scrub is amazing for two reasons:

1. It only has two ingredients
2.These ingredients are easily found in your kitchen

Now, let’s get on with it and make a scrub!


  • Baking soda
  • Any fine sugar

Use one part baking soda and one part sugar. What I love about this DIY is that it’s so easy to make as much or as little as you want. I like making small batches as I need it. So this time I mixed 8 tablespoons of baking soda with 8 tablespoons of sugar. And there you have it! Your scrub is now ready to use.

This plastic container isn’t practical in the shower unless you have a shelf to put it on. So I’m thinking I’ll put my scrub in a sugar dispenser like this one below for easy dispensing. :-)


I’ve also made this scrub into a gift.  You could put the scrub in a fancy glass container like the one below and scent it with a couple of drops of essential oils. Then simply decorate with ribbons, stickers, etc and voila! You’ve got a lovely hand-made and personalized gift appropriate for any time of the year or occasion.


So what do you think? Will you make your own scrub next time?


Free Thought Fridays: Animal Activism

I was thinking about the issue of animal activism recently. It seems that the average person either isn’t aware of or doesn’t think about the many animal activism issues. I’m the type of person who has a deep connection with animals. Since I was a little kid I was always fascinated with animals and deemed them as worthy of respect as humans. The list of issues with regards to the way we treat animals is various and long. I can’t mention them all here so I’ll just mention three that are foremost in my mind lately. For the sake of brevity I’ve only mentioned one organization against each issue though there are many for each cause.


Foie Gras:
What it is: Considered a delicacy by some, foie gras is the liver of a duck or goose that has been specially fattened.
The issue: To fatten the duck/goose the farmer inserts a tube into the animal’s throat and forces it to eat by shoving food in. The animal is force fed like this two or three times a day until the liver swells up to 10 times its size. Source: Peta article.
My opinion: Personally I cannot see how this can be considered a delicacy when the animal is being tortured. If we’re going to eat meat we must let the animal live as natural life as possible. To me that means eating food it was meant to eat, allowing it to roam freely in pasture, and basically letting it express it’s natural behaviours.
Organization against: Stop Gavage
Further reading: The Scientific Case Against Foie Gras – BC SPCA


Poaching / Canned Hunting:
What it is: Poaching is the illegal hunting of wild animals. Canned hunting is the hunting of wild animals on game ranches.
The issue: Animals like elephants, rhinos, giraffes, lions, tigers and bears are being killed all over the world for their tusks, furs, and various body parts. They are often killed brutally or by poisoning the local water sources. The problem with this is that many other animals are affected when water sources are poisoned. Also, this messes with the natural ecology of the local area. Animals raised on canned hunting game ranches are born, bred and raised so they can be killed by trophy hunters.
My opinion: A lot of these animals are being hunted/poached so extensively that they may soon be extinct. That really saddens me since I find all these animals so amazingly beautiful. Elephants in particular, have a brain that is similar in structure and complexity to that of humans. In an experiment with mirrors elephants showed that they could recognize themselves in the reflection. As for canned hunting, how anyone can think of themselves as brave for hunting an animal trapped by fences and killed by a high speed rifle boggles my mind. I would like to see how the same “hunter” fares against a tiger bare handed. There’s also a heartlessness to those who run canned hunting game ranches. How can you raise an animal from infancy and allow it to be destroyed for sport?
Organization against: International Poaching Foundation
Further reading: The fight against poaching in South Africa – Wild Life Extra
Endangered rhinos shot dead – The Dodo


What it is: When a fish or other marine animal is unintentionally caught in nets intended for other catch.
The issue
: Turtles, manta rays, sharks, seals, and orcas are all often victims of bycatch. When caught in the net these animals often end up dying due to being tangled in the nets.
My opinion: Just because we want to eat some tuna or salmon, other animals shouldn’t have to suffer. There are ways to farm tuna and salmon that are eco-friendly, sustainable and humane. Bycatch is needless slaughter and messes with the natural food chain in the ocean.
Organization against: 
Further reading:
Unsustainable fishing – WWF
Billions of pounds of sea life die every year to feed our seafood appetite – The Grist

What is your take on animal activism? Do you think about how the products you consume affect animals?


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