Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Cruelty-free perfumes!

Hi everyone! So lately I've been on the hunt for cruelty-free perfumes and it has not been easy. I've been doing a lot of research and wanted to find some fragrances that sell in stores as opposed to having to order them online and just pray that they actually smell like vanilla (this happened to me and it did not, in fact, smell like vanilla). Many of these companies listed offer sample packs if you're paranoid like I am and also sell in stores.

Fun fact: their perfume boxes are embedded with flower seeds and can be planted! I'm on a wanna-be gardener kick lately and that's my favorite part about this company so far.
(online & offers free shipping! Also could be purchased at any of these stores.)

These perfumes are made using only real essential oils from flowers, fruits, herbs and spices. They are also made to last longer than cologne. 
(online. Also could be purchased in stores, here is their store locator link.)

This perfume line was made by Drew Barrymore who started it so people can have cheaper alternatives to great smelling fragrances. Instead of paying for advertising, she promotes the line and uses the money on the funding for her products.
(online & sold in Walmart)


Kai is sold in many stores around the world and a favorite of many celebrities. This scent embodies the exotic flowers the creator loved as a child. It is sulfate, paraben, phthalate, phosphate and cruelty-free (obviously). If you're wondering what parabens are - like I was since I've been seeing "paraben free" everywhere - they are chemicals that help preserve cosmetics. Many people who strive to lead natural lives take parabens out of their products because they are detected in breast cancer tissue samples. There is no real evidence that parabens cause breast cancer, but it's enough of a reason for me and other people to not use products that include these. (online & in store, here is their store locator link.)

This line of perfume is so good for your skin! Over 30 vitamins, minerals, and amino acids are packed into the products that are exactly what your skin craves.
(online & sold in Sephora and other stores. Here is the link.)


I am obsessed with LUSH. I visit every chance I get and always spend almost all of my money there. I hadn't even thought about them having a perfume line but I'm really interested in trying it. I love their natural products and learning about the different ingredients. Sidenote- they have a sustainability program where you bring in your old bottle and get it refilled. (online & sold in LUSH stores. Here is their link to find one near you.)

What's really cool about this perfume line is each collection is inspired by the tales of ancient civilisations, by-gone eras, travel, and art allowing the creation of a truly unique story, capturing and emanating a moment in time. It's like you're going somewhere new and experiencing new scents with every spritz. And how pretty is that packaging?! (online)

Fragrances for the travel inspired. Scents that bring back memories of where you've been and where you want to go. The concept of these perfumes being named after places is so cool to me. As an example I'm going to use Brooklyn since it's close to me and I lived there for a few months while I was in school for culinary management. The scent is called Brooklyn Violet Leaf and is described as a "deep, rustic, edgy fragrance, redolent of an autumnal stroll along Brooklyn's violet-leaf clad cobblestone streets at twilight. This sensual eau de parfum channels Brooklyn’s magical alchemy of newfound leafy affluence juxtaposed with the gritty bohemian artistry of secret gallery dens and lithe young musicians on the cusp of their first big hit." (sold in store & fragrance wipes sold at Sephora*)

When I first started buying cruelty-free lipsticks, Pacifica was one of the first brands I got in my Petit Vour box. I haven't tried any of their perfumes yet but I know that their cosmetics are all happy, fun, unique and easy to wear so I'm excited to try them out. (online & sold in Target. They are also sold in these stores.)

This company was started up by a perfumer who would create the scents in her apartment until it became too small for her and her Etsy business. Based on legends, lore, literature, as well as scenes from the creator's life, these perfumes are all named after characters found within the stories that inspired their scents.
(online & sold in select stores; here is their store locator link.)

After doing this research, I decided on purchasing a few samples from some of these companies so once those come in, I'll be sure to review them. Thanks for reading!

Lots of light,

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Petit Vour Beauty Box: January 2015

Hi all! It's been awhile since my last post since I've been so busy with work and so I wanted to start off and say that I'm going to be reviewing my beauty box for January and I'll get to February's beauty box by next week, then jump into March!

This month's was called The New Luxury and was co-curated by supermodel Emily Nolan from My Kind of Life. I really loved their quote in the description (as always). "We believe in taking conscious steps to evolve in every way -- from what's inside our cosmetic bags to the way we interact with the world (& ourselves) on a daily basis, the answer is always kindness." That's exactly what got me into even going cruelty-free in the first place; I wanted to be more kind and compassionate in all aspects. I think it's very fitting for the first box of the new year so yay Petit Vour! Let's get this started.

1. 100% Pure French Lavender Hand Buttercream | $8
If you've read my other posts, you'll know I was - and still am - on a lavender kick. I cannot get enough of it. I'm usually iffy about buttercreams because I feel like they're either too thick or not thick enough, but this one is very smooth and moisturizing. It also has a lot of natural ingredients that are directed for the skin and helpful during the winter. I've been bringing this EVERYWHERE with me. Perfect size!

2. EVOLVh Leave-In Conditioner | $8 (Full-size, $26)
I am always always always looking for new leave-in conditioners so I was really excited to get this! I loved this immediately because it left my hair very soft and manageable and helped fight frizz. This product also works as a detangler if your hair is like mine and always a hot mess when it's curly. I usually like serums for my heat protectants but this liquid has an even consistency and moisturizes without weighing my hair down. This is my favorite leave-in conditioner to date!

3. MODERN MINERALS En Pointe Eye Shadow | $12.50
The perfect rose gold. Ever. Let's just start off there. I am a huge fan of neutrals and shimmer so this color is everythinggggg. I like my eyeshadow to be subtle so I only apply it once but if you like yours a little more dramatic, just keep sweeping! When I was researching Modern Minerals, I read that this color is exclusive to Petit Vour. So, yes, I do feel very special.

4. RAWSKINCEUTICALS Rose Creme Cheek Color | $15
Soooo I don't use any blush. I'm really lazy when it comes to my everyday makeup and I stick to a cat-eye and mascara and call it a day, so I didn't really know how this was supposed to go on. I've been practicing with it, though, and I've noticed that with just one swipe the color was on. It's very pigmented and super thick if you can't tell. It took me a few tries to work it in the right way so I didn't just have a blob of rose blush on my face, but I got it!

Overall, I'm very happy with my beauty-box as always. I love getting new products that I can use regularly and can work into my routines. It was a great way to start off this year for Petit Vour! I'll be posting about February's box within the week so stay tuned :)

Lots of light,

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Petit Vour Beauty Box: November 2014

Hi everyone! In my last post I mentioned my next post (this one) being about my Petit Vour box, but I ended up not getting it until last week. I had been waiting for it and received an email November 26th saying this:

Hi Lovely!

Your November Petit Vour box was shipped with our most recent shipment! We apologize for the delay with your tracking information. The recent “snowmaggedon” stretching across the US  is clogging up some of the shipping channels for our lovely brands and for our outgoing mail. Your box was scheduled to go out toward the end of last week but was delayed until this Monday. We apologize for any weather related delays while your package is traveling.

Your tracking number is '9274899999888103353084 and you can track your package at[UNIQID].

Stay safe and warm! And we hope you love your PV box!


The Petit Vour Team

I tried tracking it a week later and ended up contacting them via twitter and they told me to email their customer service team, so I did and got this response: 

Hi Breanna!

We're sorry that your tracking information isn't loading. Since our shipping carrier picks up thousands of boxes at a time, sometimes a box will get put on the truck without getting scanned, so the tracking doesn't upload into the system. Most of the time when this happens, the box is delivered normally even though the tracking is missing, but it is also possible that the box was lost in transit (typically 1/1000 boxes wind up being lost in transit). We're very sorry the tracking wasn't loaded with your box this month. That would be very frustrating after waiting for your box to arrive!

If your November box isn't delivered by Friday, we'll open an inquiry with DHL to determine the box's location. This typically only takes 24 hrs and if need be we'll have a replacement shipped with expedited shipping. Expedited shipping typically arrives in just a few days. And, though it won't help your box arrive sooner, we've added 250 PV Points to your account for the tracking issue. Rest assured we'll get your November box to you. We hope you love it!


The Petit Vour Team

I thought it was cool of them to add PV Points to my account but I couldn't help but question how my box just got lost. I know it happens and a lot of packages were getting shipped so I wasn't too upset, I just really wanted to post this!! So here goes. This month is called Natural Givers. Ashlee Piper from The Little Foxes - a compassionate lifestyle blog - partnered with them for these products.

1. AU NATURALE Creme Eye Shadow + Creme Concealer | Full-sizes, $24 + $20
When I was trying the eye shadow on I didn't really know how to feel because I've never used creme eye shadow (I'm still new to this, I know), but it went on so smooth and wax-like and then I found out that it's made of plant-based oils and waxes! How cool! The color really sticks, and it's a gorgeous gold and I love neutrals. I don't use a lot of concealer but I ended up trying it one morning before work and I noticed it had a slightly pink undertone, which worked well with my complexion. Again, I don't really know much about concealer but it did make the dark circles under my eyes that morning appear lighter so there's that.

 2. LA FRESH Waterproof Makeup Remover | 24-Count Pouch, $10
I never use waterproof makeup. Ever. I used to because my eyes tear a lot but I could never find the right waterproof makeup remover and one time I literally could not get my mascara off for like three days so I just haven't used it, but I tried it for the first time in months and used these wipes that night to take it off and I loved them! 

3. EARTHBODY SACRED SKINCARE Dream Body Oil | Full-size, $23
I have been on a huge lavender kick lately. I think I wrote about it before, but I'm seriously obsessed. I use this lavender body lotion from Trader Joe's but they were ironically sold out of it  last night so I settled for a coconut lotion but I was still upset I didn't have anything lavender. I ended up checking the ingredients to this and lo and behold! - there's lavender oil in this! This oil has a very warm and smooth texture and absorbs easily. I love it.

Cranberry and plum colors have been my go-to all fall and winter long so I was super excited to get this! It wasn't too dark after the first application but if you keep applying it, it gets darker and even more rich. I use my sister as my test subject sometimes & this is how it looked on her:
Perfect, I know. Her review is that the color is beautiful and it looks beautiful on her lips; it feels soft and she wants me to order her her own. So, we both vote yes. 

Overall I am very happy with my beauty box this month! It came a week before December's beauty box so I'm working on that next, but I hope you all enjoyed this one. 

Lots of light, 

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

e.l.f. Haul!

Hi everyone! I know it's been awhile since my last post, but I want to come back with the Black Friday haul I did. e.l.f. (eyes lips face) is one of my favorites - if not my favorite - cruelty free companies! Not only do they have gorgeous cosmetics and brushes, they're super affordable. I don't wear a lot of makeup, mainly because I'm lazy, but on the rare occasions that I actually put on eyeshadow, I like having different colors and palettes. I got rid of my old palettes when I switched to cruelty free and these are the first ones I bought! Needless to say, I'm super excited to have them.

 1. Holiday Perfect Eyes Collection - $5
Because this was a part of their holiday collection, it came in a cute little box that is perfect for gift giving. It was too pretty so I kept it for myself, but moving on.. If I just feel like wearing eyeshadow one day, I almost always wear neutral colors like these. I really wanted the Naked palette by Urban Decay but because they are owned by a non-compliant parent company, I couldn't bring myself to buy it. I figured it wouldn't hurt to try this palette and I am in LOVE! The colors go on so smooth and are very pigmented with the right amount of shimmer.

2. Studio Prism Eyeshadow - Smoke - $10
This palette comes in either Naked, Sunset, or Smoke and since I found the perfect eyes palette in neutral colors, I decided to get this one in Smoke and I am so glad I did. The colors are creamy and shimmery and have no fall out! Perfect for a night out.

3. Holiday 5 Piece Brightening Eyeshadow Collection - $5
This set also came in a super cute box if you want to be nice and give it as a gift, if not, you'll love it just as much as I do. The first shade took a few swatches to stick because of how powdery it is, but it's so pretty that you just won't care. All the shades are buttery and have a very fine finish. The last color had a little fall out and is also powdery but I plan on using it for mostly blending, so it works for me.

4. Holiday 10 Piece Lip Collection - $10
The first lipstick was pretty hard to get on and I don't really wear nude lipstick anyway, but the other four are pretty shades of pinks. Because it came in a set, I don't have specific names for them :( but they are very rich colors and they actually stay on. The colors are versatile so they can be used during the day or at night, especially with the lip glosses! I'm more of a lip gloss kind of person but together, the colors really pop. 

As you can see in the first picture, I also bought the Professional Complete Set of 12 Brushes, Eye Primer & Liner Sealer, Eye Refresh, and a free Kabuki Brush! I haven't played around with those yet but when I do, I'll be sure to review them. I usually love e.l.f. brushes so I'm sure I'll have no problem with them.

I'm waiting on my December Petit Vour beauty box so keep checking back for that post. :)

Lots of light,

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Petit Vour Beauty-Box: October 2014

Hi everyone! I'm so excited to write about my first Petit Vour box. This month it's called Beauty Thrillers. I am a huge fan of beauty boxes/bags like Ipsy and Birchbox; I love the concept of getting samples every month for $10-$15 and getting discounts on the products and after some research I decided on doing Ipsy for the past few months. Ipsy gives you the option of choosing between different brands (some cruelty-free!) but there are no guarantees that you will get a completely cruelty-free box. I didn't know that at the time, so when my September bag came I was upset to see I had a mascara from Revlon in there. I emailed them and this is what they responded:

Hi Breanna,

Thanks for your interest in our Glam Bags! A lot of our brand partners do make only vegan and cruelty-free products, but at this time we can’t guarantee that every one of your bags would contain only those products.

Thanks for reaching out to us. Your feedback helps us make ipsy better for everyone! And if we have enough demand for a vegan bag every month, we'll do our best to make it happen.

Please let me know if I can help with anything else!

(names are excluded)

While I appreciated their response and loved the products I would get, having to research each company to make sure they were cruelty-free became a hassle and a good friend of mine told me about Petit Vour. For $5 more than Ipsy you get luxury vegan beauty products! While I am not a vegan, I do intend on becoming one and am always interested in finding new companies. So here are the goodies I got this month!

1. PACIFICA Devocean Natural Lipstick | $14
This color is everything. Ugh. It is the a few shades above nude, which I can never master, and leaning towards a darker pink, which I don't usually like because I never know how I like it with my skin color, but this lipstick just got it right. So happy I got it! 

2. FLO + THEO Body Butter | Full-size, $28
This butter is amazing! Very smooth and thick but not too thick; I think it has a great body butter consistency, actually. I have also been on an I-want-everything-lavender kick lately and there are only five ingredients! All of which, of course, are not tested on animals.

3. FORAGER BOTANICALS Natural Eau de Parfum - Nectar | Full-size $98
I love floral, fruity smells that aren't too strong but aren't too light and this smell is very airy and pretty. It lingers for awhile which is awesome if you love natural scented perfumes that can last a few hours like I do. 

4. LAVINA Argan Oil | Full-size $20
I've heard so many cool things about argan oil but have yet to buy some. I've had Organix's argan oil and liked it but felt it was too heavy and greasy, but I loved the smell so I never looked anywhere else. I've since given that product to someone else because I found out they sell in China, so getting this is so cool! I love natural products for my hair and body and this oil is super moisturizing. It really makes my curls feel softer and healthier.

5. SHMIDT'S Natural Deodorant | Full-size $10
Okay, I used to use Tom's of Maine's deodorant but then I found out they were bought out by Colgate - who tests on animals - and have since used all of it up and needed a new one so I went to Trader Joe's, but have been meaning to find a deodorant I really like. Trader Joe's is unscented and I thought I would like that, but this smell is so good. It has a nice kick of lime and goes on great. 

After getting this box and researching the companies to make sure that they are not owned by any non-compliant parent companies, I emailed Petit Vour asking and they replied overnight:

Hi! My name is Breanna and I am a writer for a cruelty-free blog,, and am subscribed to your beauty box. I just got the October one and am in LOVE, but I have a few questions. I am trying to research the companies and while I know you are a cruelty-free company, I am curious if all of these companies have parent companies that may test on animals? Thank you in advance for your response!

They replied overnight - super fast, I might add - and said:

Hi Breanna!

No, they certainly do not! We wouldn't support that at all :)


The Petit Vour Team

And that's all! I definitely recommended these products and Petit Vour. I am so impressed with this company and cannot imagine running into any issues, but I will keep you posted on next month's box. Thanks for reading. :)

Lots of light,

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Organix Beauty: "Not tested on animals"?

Hi everyone! For my first company related post on this blog, I wanted to start with one of the first companies I ever emailed regarding their stance on animal testing. I got my template from Humanely-Chic - one of my favorite cruelty-free blogs - and edited it from there. I will eventually make my own, but those questions suffice for me right now. I contacted them after seeing on Peta that they were not cruelty-free, which confused me since their products state that they are Not tested on animals. I was hoping there must have been a mistake because I use(d) their conditioner, hair serum, and lotion. Their products were a big part of my daily routine.

They replied the next day, which I very much appreciated! Here's what it read:

Hi Breanna,

Thanks for contacting us! Vogue International does not itself conduct or request others to perform animal testing in order to substantiate the safety or efficacy of any of our products or raw ingredients. Given that there are countries that require animal testing by law, we do our best to respect governing law and regulations set by that governing body while encouraging alternative methods and helping to bring about change from within. We are pursuing opportunities to influence others on alternative methods and work towards our long term goal of the elimination of animal testing worldwide.  We understand that you may not agree with our decision and we respect your right to choose the best products for you.


Customer Service
After reading that, I knew I couldn't use their products anymore. From this email, I gathered that even though they might not personally test their raw or finished ingredients or products on animals, they must be selling in China. Their products still say they don't test on animals which is very misleading, and I tweeted them pointing that out but never got a response. I found some new hair products and will be reviewing them in my next post. Thanks for reading!

Lots of light,