Wednesday, April 30, 2014

WaterMelon || Spring Nail Art Competition :: Julep

Hey guys. A week or so ago I got an email from Abbey a representative of Julep. They are having this cool Spring Nail Art Competition and she asked me to participate.  I thought it was a fun idea. For my job I can't wear nail polish and so it's been a looonnnggg time since I last did a proper manicure. I missed it.

I was inspired by my favorite Spring/Summer melon. The watermelon. Granted, I was told by my sister that the design also looked like strawberries. Either way, I think it's cute! You can tell I did them, lol, but i guess that add personality? 

GO ahead and check out all the beautiful designs on Julep's blog. I'm your you'll get great ideas!! 

Lots of Love,

*I am not being paid to mention this contest. I simply love the idea! 

Monday, April 28, 2014

Alba Botanica :: natural hawaiian 3-in-1 clean towelettes || Review

Every time I take a look at the Alba-Botanica isle these "3-in-1-clean towelettes" have intrigued me. Seems like a good idea to have a makeup remover, cleansers and toner all in one. Sadly, I did not like these at all.

First, as a makeup remover these towels are terrible. On days I just wore mascara I could not fully remove all the residue. Instead I felt like the mascara was smeared all over the rest of my face. 

Then when I gave up on getting all the junk off, my face felt so sticky. Even using two towelettes was not enough. Definitely not a good towelette to use by itself as a cleanser. You are going to need to go back and wash your face with your favorite cleanser. Granted I would still go back-if the cleanser was good- and wash my face but on days I stay up too late and just want to crash, this product would be so annoying to use. 

Also, it burned my eyes. Which is terrible but expected. Think about it. If this towelette is going to function as a toner and you are using it to rub eyeliner, eyeshadow, and mascara off your eyes of course it's going to burn. If you've ever used toner you know it functions as a skin-tigthener. I found that most of the ones I've used make my skin (if I have a wound) burn. If the toner is alcohol-based it will absorb oil. It's just a mess! Meanwhile, it would be an ok toner by itself. It's just trying to use it in combination with a makeup remover that made this product very hard to use. 

I do not recommend this product and will not repurchase it.
I have been eyeing Yes to..'s line of towelettes. If you have a recommendation please let me know!
Hope you found this helpful. 

Lots of Love,

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Snatch-It-Up Sunday :: Flower Beauty || Extreme Measures: Lengthening Mascara

Hey guys. I wanted to share one of the greatest purchases I've made this month : 
Flower Beauty's Extreme Measures|| Lengthening Mascara. 
I honestly haven't found the best inexpensive, cruelty-free mascaras. Not that I haven't used some great ones. (Mainly from NYX). I just find that among non-cruelty-free brands there is a bigger array of "good" mascara to choose from (mainly from my drug-store). I've tried many of Wet N'Wild's mascaras and did not like them. Also, Milani and Jordana they were too wet. 
(Who wants a cruelty-free mascara post/video?)

This is the first Flower Beauty product I've purchased. I spend at least 10 minutes every time I go to Wal-Mart gawking at their stuff. I always pass them up (a) I have enough lip-stick (b) I have too many shadow palettes (c) don't know what foundation shade suits me best. I caved and am so glad I did. (It was about time). 

I really like the formula. With the first application I was scared it was too wet. Though, it is a "wetter" formula mascara, I find if I leave enough time between applications I got a beautiful length and separation. I don't recommend more than three applications, at least that was the limit on me.  (Meanwhile, the key is leaving enough time between applications! So keep that in mind! ) 

If you will notice by the picture below (sorry for the terrible quality, yikes!) the brush is shaped like an hourglass figure. I truly believe the shape of the mascara helps get the perfect application. My thin (almost invisible) inner corner lashes get coated with the rest of them. 

Flower Beauty claims to have high-end products for affordable prices and I really felt this mascara was very luxurious-feeling, from the tube, the picture doesn't do it justice. It's a grey-metallic-y, almost reflective tube. Also, it simply says "FLOWER Extreme Measures: Lengthening Mascara" on it. I love the minimalist packaging

Be sure to give this mascara a chance next time you're at Wal-Mart. I found it's the perfect lengthening mascara and gives you good volume. 

**I bought this with my own money. 

Lots of Love,

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wild Fire Magazine Issue Five || I'm featured on page 39!

Cover of Wild Fire's 5th issue. All credit goes to Missy! 

This past December the beautiful Missy from Wild Fire Magazine asked me to write an article about animal testing on cosmetics for her magazine. 

If you've never heard of WildFireMagazine it's this AWESOME online 100% vegan magazine! You need to check them out, they are amazing. Check out all five issue here! ] Wild Fire has over 2,000 likes on Facebook! It's just an awesome resource and such a unique awesome magazine! Also, Missy has a blog! Be sure to subscribe to it!!! 

Well, I'm so happy to announce Issue Five is out! Please check it out! Read all the articles because they are all great! Be sure to check mine out, it's on page 39! So grateful & proud of Missy and all those who were part of this issue!!! Send them love!!   & thank you for reading my blog! I love you all!!    *cyber hug*

Lots of Love,

Josie Maran Cruelty-Free Correspondence

Hey guys.
I wanted to share the emails a wonderful reader/friend of this blog sent me. Aurelie. She sent them to me a while back, but I honestly haven't had much time. I try to post at least once a week, and I usually post a Snatch-It-Up Sunday.

I am interested in buying from your company but would like to be assured that your products are cruelty-free. I have some questions I would appreciate you address.

1. Does your company test ingredients or/and finished products on animals?
2. Do you test ingredients or products on animals through a 3rd party? If your answer is no, how do you ensure that your manufacturers do not test?
3. Do your manufacturers test ingredients or products on animals?
4. Are you owned or affiliated with any companies that test products or ingredients on animals?
5. Do you have a parent company? If so who are they?
6. Do you/your parent company currently or have plans to market and sell your products in the Chinese market, which requires animal testing by law to sell in that country?
7. Do you use palm oil/carnuaba wax in any of your products? If so, is it from an organic and sustainable source?
8. Could you provide a list of all of your current vegan items available for purchase?

Thank you in advance for you cooperation!
They sent her this reply:

Thank you for taking the time to write in, my name is [name omitted]. We deeply apologize for the delayed response, as we're closed over the weekend and the past several days for a company-wide training. Josie Maran Cosmetics is a 100% cruelty-free brand and does not conduct animal testing—nor do we allow any other parties, including our suppliers, to conduct animal testing on our behalf. We're proud to be listed on PETA’s official website as a cruelty-free company.

Please write again if I can help in any way!

As you can tell, this reply is very vague. Cool, they are part of PETA's list, but that doesn't answer questions like their parent company, etc.

Aurelie, emailed them back:

Hi [name omitted],

You omitted to answer to those questions,

I will really appreciate if you answer to those questions below.

Thank you so much!

4. Are you owned or affiliated with any companies that test products or ingredients on animals?
5. Do you have a parent company? If so who are they?
6. Do you/your parent company currently or have plans to market and sell your products in the Chinese market, which requires animal testing by law to sell in that country?
7. Do you use palm oil/carnuaba wax in any of your products? If so, is it from an organic and sustainable source?
8. Could you provide a list of all of your current vegan items available for purchase?
 This was their second respond:
Hi [name omitted],

Thank you for following up with us. Josie Maran Cosmetics is a 100% cruelty-free brand and does not conduct animal testing—nor do we allow any other parties, including our suppliers, to conduct animal testing on our behalf. We do partner with our suppliers and manufacturers to ensure our high standards, values, and visions are aligned with being a cruelty free brand. In regards to vegan products, each of our products has a list of icons on the product page. There will be a vegan free icon associated with products that are gluten free. I hope this helps and have a great day.

Please write again if I can help in any way.
Again, they did not address question #6. Which, in my opinion, needs to be answered!!

She emailed them for the third time.

Hi [name omitted],

Thank you so much for your patience.

You omitted to answer to one last question - the one about Chinese market.

I will really appreciate if you answer to this question below.

6. Do you/your parent company currently or have plans to market and sell your products in the Chinese market, which requires animal testing by law to sell in that country?

Thank you,
 You go Aurelie! I love this correspondence! I'm such a nerd, I get so excited!

Hi Aurelie,

Thank you for your response. Our products are not sold in the Chinese market though Josie Maran Cosmetics to our knowledge and consent. Josie Maran Cosmetics is a 100% cruelty-free brand and does not conduct animal testing—nor do we allow any other parties, including our suppliers, to conduct animal testing on our behalf. We're proud to be listed on PETA’s official website as a cruelty-free company. We stand by our values and vision, especially when it comes to animal testing. I hope this helps and have a great day!

Aurelie and I agree that based on Josie Maran's answers to the questions, we would want to support them. They meet the three critieria I look for when determining a company's cruelty-free status.

 Aurelie emailed them back, thanking them for their time. I wanted to share their reply to her. It's not necessary for determining cruelty-free status, however I think companies that treat their costumers with respect deserve to be acknowledged. 

Absolutely-if you have any other questions, concerns, or feedback, please don't hesitate to share. We really value customer feedback her at Josie Maran!

Please write again if I can help in any way.
Isn't that a lovely email to read? I have received quite a number of emails that are not so friendly.

I hope you found this post helpful! I certainly did. Thank you Aurelie! You are awesome & you are going to help so many with this post!

Lots of Love,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Snatch-It-Up Sunday || Facial Polishing Mask CHARCOAL and Black Sugar

Hey guys! Do you like my rosy-sheets? You can't be a beauty-blogger and not own rosy-sheets! I'm so excited to share this beautiful product with you all! 

I wanted to feature Freeman's Facial Polishing Mask CHARCOAL & Black Sugar. I bought mine at Rite-Aid for $1.99. Which is ridiculously cheap! I'm so excited to try more of their products. 

(Note: I checked on Leaping Bunny's list for Freeman's cruelty-free status. According to LB they are 100% CF. I did notice Logical Harmony had them as CF but owned by a non-cruelty-free parent. Meanwhile I noticed that after I purchased this product. I trust LB a lot and so felt comfortable sharing my review. Just be aware of that.) 

As I type this I have the mask on. I would only be appropriate. The first thing that caught my attention was the scent. It's sooo good! I'm trying to think of all the perfect adjectives to describe the scent and I can't seem to find ones that are good enough. It definitely does not have a sweet or berry scent. It's quite musky. Reminds me of a perfume you'd wear on a late-night date night. It's quite sexy! (Can a face mask be sexy? YES!) 

It claims to "detox [the] skin" and "absorb oil and impurties without over-drying". I have to agree. The sugar particles gently exfoliate your skin, but the mask itself is oily. Don't freak out! Not the type of oily, like an oily slice of cheese pizza. It's a good kind of oily. If you've never used oils on your face, you probably think I'm loosing my mind. I've used both coconut oil and avocado oil and I promise you (at least for my skin-type) they've never broken me out. I think the fact that the liquidly-part is oily allows the skin to remain lush even as you remove dead-skin cells with the sugar. 

It has not once broken me out! 

Also, the sugar is by no means harsh on my skin. Meanwhile, it's not too soft either. I feel some face exfoliators are too soft on the skin, they almost feel like I've put a creme on rather than an exfoliator. 

I love the combination of the sugar and the oily-moisturizing liquid of the mask. They are in harmony. 
Now, my favorite part of the mask is the warmth!!! WHAT? YES! 
I don't know how, but you can actually feel warmth on your face after you apply the mask. I don't know how they do it, but it's an awesome feeling. I notice I don't feel as much warmth now that I've used it for two weeks, compared to when I first bought it. My theory is that the first time I used it all the impurities were being detoxified (that that a word?) and so now I have less junk. 

I would really recommend you give this mask a try. Also, check out their other products. My sister got their avocado mask, I have tried it and might just review it for you guys. 

Hope you enjoyed reading this week's Snatch-it-Up Sunday. I love writing these. Even if they don't always get published on a Sunday (shhh!). 

Lots of Love,

Disclaimer: I bought this with my own money. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Getting to Know Me :: TAG

I've been tagged guys! The beautiful and talented Aimee from Aimee Belle (be sure to check her out) has tagged me!
I don't usually do these kinds of blog-posts, but I had so much fun answering these questions I want to do more!!! Let me know if you like them! \
I apologize ahead of time for any spelling and or grammar errors. There's a reason I'm a biochemistry major! Yikes!!
Question 1: Flats or Heels?:
I really like heels. I like how they look (just the shoe) and how they make your legs look. For some reason (at least this is my experience) your posture improves and they almost give you a butt-lift. (Is that even a thing?) Meanwhile, I wear flats (sandals & boots) 99.95% of the time. I will RARELY wear heels. They are impractically for my lifestyle.

Question 2 : What's Your Fave Nail Polish Brand?:

I really like Zoya polishes. Meanwhile, I have more Wet N' Wild polishes. I think the Mega Last ones (the ones that are $1.99) are great.

Question 3: Top 5 Movies Of All Time?:

1. Pride and Prejudice
2. You've Got Mail
3. Tangled/Frozen (I cannot choose one!)
4. Despicable Me
5.Hungers Games Movies

Question 4 : Fave Male and Female Singer?:
Yikes! I haven't been into any particular band/musician as of late. In High School I loved Nirvana. I don't think I have a favorite female singer.

Question 5 : If You Could Take Only 3 Make Up Products To a Desert Island what would they be?:
1. Sunblock (100 SPF if possible),
2.Red Lipstick
3.Chocolate Bar Palette
5.Deoderant (I can imagine living on an island would make you very smelly.)
(Meanwhile, if I was alone would I really care about stinking? I could continue in this stream of consciousness).

( I just realized, editing this, that we could only choose 3 products. Woops!!!)

Question 6 : What's Your Fave Disney Movie?:


Question 7 : What's your Fave High End Make Up Brand?:

I will quote Aimee "I'm poor!" That's how I feel about this question. I do love Too-Faced. (Please, Too-Faced people, if you read this because why wouldn't you, don't sell out like tarte).
Question 8 : What's your Fave Drug Store Make Up Brand?:
Wet N' Wild. I have so many of they're products. I don't like they're foundation/powder selection, meanwhile they're shadows are the best in my opinion.

Question 9 : Describe yourself in 5 words?:

Easily Amused, Forgiven, Weird, Daydreamer, Extremely-Empathetic
Question 10 : Shower or Bubblebath?:

I LOVE taking bubble-baths. I usually go for a shower. Unless, I find time.

Question 11 : Which 3 Products are on your Wishlist that you would love to try?:
1. Flower Beauty's BB Crème
2.NYX HD Concealer
3. Too-Faced Brow Envy Kit
4. Lush  (any, I haven't had the joy of buying many Lush products). *first world problems*
5.Love and Toast's perfumes
( I just realized, editing this, that we could only choose 3 products. Woops!!!)
Question 12 : What's your Fave body cream?:
I like using coconut oil for my body.

Question 13 : Who Is your Fave Actress and Actor?:
I love Keira Knightly. Also, there is something about Paul Rudd. I don't love all his movies, but I think he's so cute.

Question 14 :Your no1 Female Role Model and Why?:
My mom. She is just such a special person. She has thought me about God, about overcoming tribulations, and about fighting for those you love. She works so hard to provide me and my sister with everything. I wish to one day 50% of the kind of mom she is.

Question 15 :Who Are Your Top 5 Fashion/Glamour Icons?:
I honestly don't look to one person for inspiration. If I did have to name one person, it'd be Zooey Deschanel. Meanwhile, I take inspiration from instagram OOTD and people on the streets. (By that I mean, my fellow classmates).

Question 16 :What's your Fave Chocolate?:
Milk. In terms of candy bar. I'd have to give the award to M&Ms. I love the Pretzel and have discovered the deliciousness of the peanut-butter ones.

Question 17 : Do you wear Fake Tan?, If So, what's your Fave Brand?:
No. I live in Sunny Southern California (as Shay Carl would say) and I have an olive complexion. I tan so fast it's ridiculous.

Question 18 : What's your Fave TV programme at the moment?:
Yikes! I don't really watch TV. I watch so many vlogs. (ShayTards, TheNiveNulls, AprilJustinTV, It'sJudysLife...CullenandKatie....I just discovered TribeTyler)

Question 19 : What's your Fave Shampoo & Conditioner range?:

I don't use a CF brand. So I don't want to "advertise" the brand I do use. If you have a cheap CF option, let me know.

Question 20 :What's your Fave Deodrant?:
All the CF ones I have tried are terrible. Please, leave me recommendations!
Now it's my turn!! I tag:
Sarah from BeautyBunnyLove
Also, anyone who wants to do this tag! I tag you!!! & if you do end up answering these questions, leave me a link so I can read them!!!
Lots of Love,


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Snatch-it-Up Sunday :: NYX Lip Smacking Fun Colors || Cocoa

Hey guys! A week or so ago, I noticed the lack of neutral lip sticks in my collection. I have more reds than I need, lots of plumy-vampy ones, and a few pinks. I really wanted something that would be a bit darker than the natural tint of my lips. Meanwhile, I didn't want something super basic, I still wanted something with an edge, keeping with the vampy theme.

I love NYX lip sticks. They are so smooth and they have lots of color selection. I'm sure you guys feel the same! If NYX does one thing the best, I'd definitely say it's their lippies. 

I instantly fell in love with the shade 'cocoa'. I was swooned!!! It's a very-dark muave brownish color with a tint of plum. I just think it's gorgeous!! It's not a matte, it's very much a creme formula. If you like glossy lips you'd like this. Meanwhile, if you're into mattes, you'll probably think it's too glossy. 

You can apply it opaque-ly or sheer it out. I love the look it gives (my lips in particular) when sheered out. It's very natural. I feel like a flower-child when I wear it. Yes!!! 

Also, it's not a Kardashian-nude kind of look. (Which I'm not a fan of). It's not bright, yet gives your complexion pick-me-up. 

I wanted to share how it looks on! However, Sundays are no-makeup Sundays for me. I'll be sharing some selfies later this week! So follow me on instagram if you're interested!!! 

Lots of Love,

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Snatch-It-Up Sunday || NYX's stay matte but not flat powder

Hey guys!

So I decided to feature NYX's stay matte but not flat powder foundation for this week.

I think this powder is awesome but sadly, it does not get mentioned much among the beauty community. If you are new to cruelty-free makeup, I know how hard it is to find inexpensive powders at the drug-store. Granted this powder does retail for $9.99 at Ulta, so it's definitely higher up there, but trust me it's worth it. Please, save yourself some grieve and give this powder a try!

It gives your skin a skin like look. Yes, your skin looks matte but not dry. (As the name suggests). I don't know how to explain it better than that. Also, it will maintain that freshly applied look for a good five hours. I run around a lot through the day, but I find that I only have to re-apply once a day; on particularly hot days maybe twice. You might be able to wear it longer! Consider your skin-type.

While mattefying your skin, it will give you extra coverage. Some might find you can get away with just this powder. Meanwhile, if you are like me and want those spots to be concealed, you will appreciate the extra coverage. Don't use a heavy hand if you have applied liquid foundation, as you might get a cake-y look. Definitely do not use the sponge it comes with! Use a powder brush. I think the Real Techniques Buffer Brush is best for foundation-powders. Use a brush with more compact bristles. It gives you the perfect look.

The reason I realized how much I loved this powder this week, was because I  ran out (I still have a bit to use up) and got a new one. When you re-purchase a beauty product you know you like it. I did get a lighter shade the one I had before worked for me, but was a tiny-bite too dark. Be sure to get your correction shade! That's the good thing about Ulta, they have testers.

I hope you found this post informative or at least fun to read! I wish you a wonderful week! I'm going back to the grind of life, my Spring Break week is over! Oh well!

Lots of Love, 

*I bought this with my own money. But if NYX decided to send me stuff to try, I would not mind! ;) 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Tarte bought by Kose || Are they still Cruelty-Free?

Hey guys.

If you don't know by now, I'm sad to say, that tarte has been bought by Kose. Kose is a Japanese brand. I'd never heard of them before and what I do know is from Logical Harmony's post. Please read that blog post!

By the way, if you've never checked out Logical Harmony, which was started by Tashina, you MUST. (I'm sure you guys have).

tarte made it official on their facebook page.

To all of our tartelettes: As you may have heard, tarte has recently been acquired by Japanese company KOSÉ. It’s truly been an amazing ride, from the little venture Maureen Kelly started in her bedroom 15 years ago to the global powerhouse we’re privileged to join. Our vision has always been to create beauty products that are ‘healthy treats for your skin,’ foster the highest level of customer service and give back to the community and the environment. By joining the KOSÉ family and adding to that rich portfolio, we can build on what we’ve already accomplished with powerful products and explore expanding the tarte brand in new and exciting countries. And rest assured, we are committed to remaining a cruelty-free brand and will not test on animals. Maureen will stay on as the CEO and looks forward to continuing a lasting relationship with our tartelettes.
xo, the tarte team!
As for HumanelyChic, I will no longer consider tarte a CF company and will remove them from my CF list.

This is very disappointing news! :( I'm sorry for all of you that have loved tarte for years.

Lots of Love,


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