Aqua Marina

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It’s been awhile since I’ve reviewed any vegan products! But I’m back and I’ve found something that vegans everywhere can fall in love with! Before I decided to become vegan my go-to skin cleansing product has always been Clinique. Especially, their three-step system that came with (or that you bought) 1. a cleanse, 2. exfoliation, and 3. moisturizer. Which I deeply, deeply loved. But just knowing how many chemicals that’s in each individual thing I used it was time for a change.

It seems that every decently experienced vegan, that I know, already knows about a business called LUSH. That, apparently, isn’t new at all. It’s been around since 1995 founded in the United LUSHKingdom. They home-make everything they sell. From soaps, bath bombs, makeup, perfume, to toothpaste. All for male and female! They have a large variety that you can choose from. Using ingredients such as veggies, fruits, essential oils, and synthetic ingredients. But sometimes their products do contain honey and beeswax. (For fellow vegans be sure to read the ingredients if that isn’t something you wish to use.) In addition to not using animal in their products, they are also 100% against animal testing. Therefore, they perform tests with volunteers instead. Which is a HUGE step in the right direction. I ended up ordering their product called Aqua Marina. Which is a cleanser! I have naturally breakout prone skin. Always have. Growing up and even still today I have highly sensitive skin. I have to really watch what I apply to my skin! After reading the ingredients a couple hundred times and researching fellow costumer(s) reviews, I decided to buy.

      First, let me start by saying that the smell seemed very over powering. It smelled of the sea and salt. But it wasn’t the most friendly of smells. Not to mention it really looked gross! I’ve seen seaweed before. Just… Okay, I was immediately displeased! However, I’m LUSH1on a mission to find vegan products that, not only are great on my skin, for my skin. But so that other people will see that its not so difficult adjusting to veganism. Of course when shower time came I busted it back out.

      Here’s where everyone can say, “That’s what you get for jumping to conclusions!” Because once in the shower, I twisted off the top, mixed it all up with a couple of my fingers, scooped out a pea size amount, added water, and started applying it all over my face…And I instantly fell in love. Before even washing the Aqua Marina off my face I could feel how soft and smooth my skin was becoming! (Yeah, maybe I did end up adding a little of it to my shoulder and arms…and legs, and back!) Washing it off was such a breeze as well! Every once in a while you’ll get one of those ‘cleansing’ face washes and it takes a good five minutes trying to get it off your hands, face, hairline, bleh. This just washed off with a few splashes to the face.

      It claims to use calming Calamine wash which is what you applied to insect bites whenever you were a kid to reducing itching. “Aqua Marina was made with the same principle in mind; using the LUSH2soothing pink extract to calm irritated, sensitive skin. This creamy, gentle cleanser is rolled up with mineral rich nori seaweed to nourish the skin, cooling aloe vera gel and a sprinkling of sea salt for a super gentle exfoliation.” -LUSH Cosmetics website.  I hate to be one of those people who boast on and on about a product… Wait. It really does imply that calming effect that they’re talking about. My skin feels baby skin soft, it’s glowing, and after only a handful of usage my pores have shrunk to being almost nonexistent!  My pores never really bothered me before. But, hey! I’ll take it! After falling in love with this cleanser so much that smell doesn’t even bother me anymore. Or maybe I’ve just grown accustom to the smell? I really do believe this is the perfect face wash if your skin is anything like mine. Black head, pimple, acne prone skin. Aqua Marina will clear it right up for you! I’ve even read where people with rosacea claim this product to be a miracle worker! So simple and easy. Anyway, I suppose I’ll stop my rambling because if I don’t I’ll ramble on forever! If you have a vegan product you’d like for me to try/review, let me know! As always, happy vegan-ing! :)

lush3 LUSH Fresh Handmade Cosmetics

Product contains: Glycerine, Calamine Powder, Kaolin, Irish Moss Infusion (Chondrus crispus), Aloe Vera Gel (Aloe barbadensis), Sea Salt (Sodium Chloride), Nori Seaweed (Fucus vesiculosus), Sweet Orange Oil (Citrus dulcis), Patchouli Oil (Pogostemon cablin), Carrageenan, Lilial, Hexyl Cinnamal, and Fragrance

Vegan Community

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Today’s blog will be a little different. I’m not reviewing a new vegan product I’ve only recently discovered. I’m not even going to make some nice, gourmet meal like most of my fellow vegan-ers do. Today, I am writing about our vegan community.

As many of you may (or may not) know, I am new to becoming vegan. Although I’m new, I’m very passionate about it. I tend to take it very serious and try my hardest of obtain from any animal products. Sure, I feel silly to have just now seen the big, bright light that’s been telling me to give up meat long before now. But over all, my transition from a omnivore to a herbivore has been fairly simple. Yeah, my general family thinks it’s a tad odd and my husband’s work-buddies think he’s being ridiculous. However, there’s something even more that I’ve, personally, gained. I’ve gained a whole new community. In the short time since deciding to be vegan I’ve started a vegan lifestyle blog, created a Twitter, and Instagram. I’m not a huge fan of social media. I use to be on Facebook. But after reconnecting with long-lost family and childhood friends, it became a place where people would spend most of their time complaining and/or do things that I no longer found relevant really. Instagram has always been a place where people post photos of food. Burgers, pizzas, fries, milkshakes. So, I couldn’t really see the positive side of having another one of those either. Nonetheless, I created new ones.

Here’s where I raise my hands and do a (badly done) happy dance! I have had the chance to chat, swap ideas, see some amazing motivation, and then some. I have to admit, yes. Majority of my vegan pals are internet friends. But to see so many people taking the extra step to better themselves, helping the earth to become a better place, all in different places, states, countries! It’s really a sight for sore eyes. It’s beautiful to see all the colors in everyone’s vegan diets. I mean, really, who needs a cookbook when you have vegan friends that constantly post delicious photos of their vegan creations? With everything considered, I do think about times before I was vegan. Like how I probably won’t ever eat at my favorite Japanese restaurant anymore or how now family gatherings will take a little convincing for anyone other than me and my husband to eat/try anything I bring. But, for me, being vegan was way long over due. I thank you to all, vegan community, who have been so warm and motivational during our transformation. I am always opened to new ideas, constructive criticism, and any ways that overall improve my health and my life. Until next time… Happy Vegan-ing! :)

Being Free of Cruelty While Staying Pretty

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Vegan women near, far, and wide are always looking for new and improved ways of staying beautiful all while saving the world. It can be a difficult task especially with today’s chemicals, fillers, and the flat-out lies from said-trusted company! So, I’ve made it my mission to, not only try as many vegan meals as I possibly can. But to prove the doubters it’s completely possible not to change every aspect of your life and help out the fellow vegans who may not have the abilities to spend a whole lot of time and money obtaining from all the worldly pleasures. Though, going fully raw would be in all of our best interests. Sometimes that just isn’t available. Then again, maybe we have wants, needs, and passions we don’t want to give up. For me, it’s make up! I absolutely love getting new makeup! Free samples, new brands. I love just opening a product and how fresh and smooth it is to apply to my skin! If you’re also a makeup lover you know that feeling of the first use of your favorite, beloved product. It’ll always work just fine any other time you apply it. But nothing compares to that very first use… Anyway! After becoming vegan, obviously, I insisted on finding great, quality brand(s) of makeup. Which, if you know where to look, isn’t as hard as you think!

Product of the day: Urban Decay, 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils. Cost: $20 (A tad expensive. Ranging around $5 above normal liners.) Color: Dark brown (Underground). It may seem like I keep giving 10/10 on everything I review. But come on! Urban Decay has a massive variety of colors ranging from black (Perversion), blue (Chaos), even green (Freak)! These pencils are no joke. They are creamy and soft, they can line thin or thick. Not to mention the color choices! Where else have you seen so many browns and an awesome neon pink?! It didn’t fade away throughout the day either. It defiantly helped me achieve the look I was going for! I plan on using this type of liners on an everyday basis and purchasing a set of 8 to have a variety of colors to choose from. The only down side is I’m going to end up running out! Would I recommend this to any of my friends? Absolutely! Every single one of them should go out a purchase this little, magic pencil! Overall, it’s simple to use, smooth, and best part is it’s 100% VEGAN. Every day being vegan is getting easier and easier. Pretty soon there won’t be anymore excuses as to why it’s not doable! But for now, as always, if you have a vegan product you’d like for me to try/review let me know! Happy vegan-ing! :)

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Vegan Hair Care

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Since I’ve been vegan I have been on the hunt for an awesome hair cleaning product. I know I’ll probably get the third degree for not using organic coconut oil or some jazz like that. But guess what? I already do! I’m a girl. A girly girl when I want to be. So, yeah. I like to get all dolled up.

I have really thick, long hair. I mean passed my boobs long! Also, I don’t dye my hair. Even though I don’t use the most organic stuff on my hair all the time. I’d like to have something that feels clean and is animal-cruelty free. About two-week ago I ordered some makeup and other vegan must have items for your body (like LUSH! But we’ll save that for another post ;) ). Of course, inside my box came with some free samples! Which, I absolutely loved. It came with some Hempz Herbal moisturizer (which smelled amazing by the way),  and this neat shampoo and conditioner called Bamboo Volume Abundance. It’s apparently made from bamboo extract. Let me tell you, it smelled so AMAZING! I can’t even describe how awesome and soft my hair felt. That’s just from using it once! Not that I have fine hair or anything. But my hair usually likes to lay pretty straight. After using this, without hairspray, I have beautiful volume and hold. To make sure I was falling in love with something that was real and not something that made me think, “Hey, this is vegan. Just for that I love it!” I went and bought a Beauty-On-The-Go kit from Ulta. Which happened to have come with 48-hour sustainable spray and uplifting root blast. Because, ya know, you can never have too much volume… and a bottle of volume abundance shampoo and conditioner. Long story short, I’m almost out and I know I just HAVE to have larger bottles of this stuff! It really makes my hair look fuller and feel stronger. Since using it I’ve noticed my hair isn’t as frizzy. Still frizzy, not as much. Anyway, if there’s anything you’d particularly want me to use/try to review let me know! I’m always up for a new vegan substance! :)

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Free of: Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates, Synthetic Color, Sodium Chloride, Gluten, DEA/TEA & Triclosan

My (Our) Vegan Story!

I, personally, have thought about going fully vegan for a while now. Just hadn’t ever committed to it. But here we are and it has been a month since Nick and I decided to, both, become vegan! I know that isn’t much. But it is a huge step in the right direction. If anyone knows my husband they know that he his a giant meat-eater. Anything from chicken sandwiches, chicken nuggets, pastas with chicken, everything! Chicken has always been his most favorite food. So, I was a little hesitant to ask him if he wanted to join me in attempting to become fully vegan. After a deep discussion on how we may be only be 23, we’re still 23, and need to get our good habits in and our bad habits out NOW. Surprisingly he was more than willing to do it when our discussion turned towards how many animals we’d collectively and individually be saving annually.

You see, we have two fur-babies, Butters and Trixy. They have the biggest personalities! Butters is a 18-year-old, ginger, large, fluffy cat who enjoys lounging around all day any where he can constantly be pet and have his people in plain eyesight. He has to have a full bowl about 80% of the day or he is not having it and there will be absolutely no sleeping, eating, anything! We adopted him from a women on the military base Nick is stationed at when her son decided the kitten was his rough housing toy! Dumping peach juice on him so they were having to give him baths several times a day, throwing him around, it was awful. He’s the biggest sweetheart. He just really wants to be around his people all the time. Other than that, he doesn’t care about much else. Trixy is a 7-year-old, solid black cat. We adopted her from the Little Rock Animal Village here in Arkansas. She was only three weeks old, her whole body could fit into the palm of my hand. We were told that her and her brother were abandoned out front of the animal village in a cardboard box while it was storming. Also, that her brother she came in with had been adopted earlier that morning. So, they were really advent about finding her a place where she wouldn’t be alone. Now she talks/meows more than any cat I have ever seen! She is constantly talking to my husband, curling up in his lap, watching him as he talks, rolling around all cute-like to get our attention. She’s still pretty tiny, too. Which is fun to see the contrast between our two babies. I suppose the reason I’m giving you their background story is because we’ve finally seen the light. If I wouldn’t eat my precious fur babies, why would I eat anything else? To think that there’s other animals out there, calves, ducks, rabbits, chickens that have their own personalities as well. I no longer can stand the thought of eating something that could bring so much life, light, and joy into the world. We’re striving to be the best cat-meowmy-o and cat-daddy-o we can be!

Below are some photos of our fur babies when they were first adopted and present day!

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Meet Trixy! She was three weeks old and this was on her way to her new home. She’s still just as curious and precious.blog3

 

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Meet Butterscotch, AKA Butters! A fluffy, food grubber. This is what he decided was the best idea when he very first walked into his new home. Eat!

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INSANITY

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Tomorrow I start the famous Insanity 60-day total-body conditioning program. I’ve had the DVDs for a while now. Just never really had the time to get really into it. I have to say I’m a bit nervous. But I’m ready. I would definitely have to say I’m out of shape! Over the last month or so I haven’t been keeping up with my cardio. During the school year it’s easy for me to keep a workout schedule because I already have other set schedules. Since it’s summer, its easy to slack off on one thing whenever you’re slacking off on other things. I’m excited! I could really go for a little toning here and there. I’m ready to get my booty kicked by Shaun-T!

Shingeki no Kyojin/Attack on Titan

First off, I should state that I’ve never been into anime, aside from the occasional Bleach. It’s just never been something I could really get into. I would watch a few episodes and then it began to feel like every plot dragged out, on and on. So, I’d eventually stop watching all together. At the beginning of June I started my summer with much needed time away from school. My Netflix kept suggesting I watch some odd anime that I had only seen a few trailers about. I didn’t really want to. But seems how I already binged on about 90% of what Netflix had to offer at the time, I was left with no other choice. So, I decided to watch it.

Well people, I was GLUED to the screen! I watched every episode in, collectively, two days. Then, watched it again with my husband. THAT, is how much I loved this show! This anime gem has it all. The story never once seemed stale. I watched as these people fought, literally, till death for their right to live. The show, itself, couldn’t have drawn me in anymore than it already had until the main character, Eren, somehow managed to get even more bad ass as it went along! I felt his constant want and need to do what was right for everyone around him. But, also, the overpowering sensation to destroy all and everything that surrounds you just because he had the ability and mentality to. Every character played a major part and pulls on those strings attached to our hearts. You laugh, you cry, you feel for them. It was so riveting with it’s constant dark gore, violence, mystery, and secrets. It has a sense of realism to it that I, myself, felt the need to fight for humanity along side my new best friends against the titans. I couldn’t get enough! I still can’t get enough! Luckily, there’s already been announcements and sightings of a season 2! So, you better hurry and get all caught up before it comes out in July! I know I’ll probably binge again before the next season comes out. I know, it’s a problem! For now I’m off to find my next Netflix show!