Sunday, December 20, 2009
The last couple weeks have been amazing, I have been meeting the most incredible people, so many inspired souls on missions of their own... so many striving towards expanded personal growth, honoring their own health and beauty, deepening their connection to their planet and all those who live upon it.
I am not the most social creature. I can be shy around new people, of which many are entering my life right now in this place of growth. I am quiet by nature, unless I have something real to say and then I can be quite fierce and direct. The social networking part of business always presents a challenge to me.
I believe in what I am doing, am confident in my skills and the importance of the journey I am on. But talking to people about it... explaining just WHY this is so necessary, why change is vital, why healthy beauty as I wish it encompasses so much more than looking pretty for a night out. What gives me the authority to educate on these things? What credentials do I have that allow me the ability to charge fees for my time and services? Because this is such a passion, I struggle with the business part of things, with the technical side of relating all of this into concise words and plans and a bottom line.
A woman in full support of me asked the other day, what can I tell my clients about you? How can I explain what makes you different? Another asked, where were you trained? I feel the need right now to be open.
To the first, I wrote the following in an email.
The truth is that there is no standard for this. I am exploring a territory that is fairly new, at least to the mainstream and certainly to the entertainment industry. I had to create my own standard, my own set of rules. I utilize the SkinDeep Database regularly to keep ingredients in check and to establish some kind of set guideline so as to not let things slide or get lax when I find products I love that are ALMOST clean enough to use and endorse. Research has become a regular part of my everyday. I am the first to admit that I know just a sliver of what there is to know. I am not a chemist. I do not have a formal eduction on these subjects. I am not licensed or certified or regulated because there is no standard for what I do. There is no guideline that says where to go from here for me. This is a new venture. What I know, I know because I researched it on my own, with other people who know more than I do, by reading, by talking to others, by trial and error, by having lived and worked as a model and in the beauty industry for the last decade. I was a standard makeup artist years ago. I know this world thoroughly in the practical sense. I do struggle with words, with having the facts to state to make information palatable and retain-able when I am speaking on this subject. This is far from the easy part for me. I fumble all the time when questioned. There are so many in this community that are incredibly well versed and know far more than I do in the technical sense. I welcome their questions and their intensity. I do get intimidated, but it drives me as well to continue to learn. I am a makeup artist. My roots are deeply green. I have passion that drives me. This is something I care about intensely. Time will provide credibility for me, time to establish more information and a deeper understanding of it so I can communicate it with ease, time to establish a clientele as invested as I am, time to re-build a book that stands on it's own even without the tag of green, time to line up the business with the heart and bring it to a successful place where I can prosper as a business woman as well as a caring partner in the search for a healthier way of approaching beauty.
There is a very large hill to climb in front of me but I embrace the challenge.
I very much welcome your input. It is people like you, like the others I have been meeting lately, all coming together that make scaling mountains possible for all of us.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
I have the greatest job in the world.
This is what I was thinking the other day, perched on the edge of photographer Ward Robinson's rooftop studio overlooking Los Angeles, the most incredible gold sunset wrapping it's warmth all around me....
Our outrageously beautiful model with the fullest lips I have ever seen wanders over to me, points out the fact that me laying in the sun on the side of the building like this would be just dandy... if there wasn't a drop inches away to several stories down with no rail to hold me in. Oh yes. I remind myself that I'm not really a bird... and prayed that any earthquakes hold off for at least the next fifteen minutes and basked there until the sun dipped below the palm tree speckled horizon.
What I am loving most about my job right now is that I created it. I took a passion and made a profession. For years, I have heard over and over and over that I could not be successful as a makeup artist and still offer healthy, natural beauty... that 'green' products have not reached a certain quality level or there would not be a demand for a service that challenged the ordinary or that eco friendly could not exist outside of a crunchy granola girl package or bla bla bla bla bla... It is simply not true. I am having fun disproving these theories.
Tomorrow I am shooting the cover of "A Distinctive Style", a green magazine who's subtitle is Awareness/Art/Inspiration. Our model is Rachel Avalon, 2009 winner of Project Green Search, a campaign aimed at inspiring people to align their careers with their environmental, social and humanitarian ethics, serving as a platform to connect mission driven people with sustainable businesses and organizations in the modeling, spokesperson, design, fashion, entertainment and arts arenas. And most appropriate to photograph this job is of course my dear friend and eco enthusiast Courtney Dailey who is in the slow and thorough process of greening her downtown studio.
I could not be more thrilled to be where I am right now. I am watching my green world prosper. I am creating my own universe of collaborators who care, who are kind to our planet, who embrace a healthier path towards glorious green beauty.
I have the greatest job in the world.
Saturday, December 5, 2009
A few weeks ago I added something very simple to my beauty arsenal.
As a scrub.
For my FACE.
Really, it couldn't be simpler. For years, I've kept a box in the refrigerator to absorb smells, another under the sink as a natural cleaning aid. On the very rare occasion I get around to baking, soda is of course a necessary staple. I can't even claim this is a new discovery in my beauty routine as I have added this ingredient to a number of homemade scrubs, soaks, etc.... but it never really occurred to me to use this on it's own. It turns out, this is my new favorite way to wake up.
Step one. Roll out of bed and make your way to the bathroom.
Two. Splash cool water onto your face, waking up your cells and stirring your circulation.
Three. Sprinkle a couple teaspoons of baking soda into the palm of your wet hand, adding drops of water as necessary to form a smooth paste. (You can also add baking soda straight to your regular facial cleanser or a creamy lotion in place of the water though I adore the simplicity of this alone.)
Four. Smooth over your skin, gently massaging in small circles and avoiding your delicate eye area. Take your time and enjoy the process.
Five. Rinse completely with cool to lukewarm water.
Six. Pat dry and follow with your favorite "green" moisturizer.
This is the perfect scrub for a number of reasons. It is cheap, effective, natural... the perfect degree of exfoliation - not too rough, but gets the job done.
A few other great ways to use baking soda in your eco beauty routine:
Add a tablespoon to your shampoo and wash as usual. Rubbing this concoction into your scalp helps to remove traces of styling product residue, environmental pollution, dirt and oil.
Body or foot soak:
Add half a cup or more to a bath before you hop in to to relax. The baking soda neutralizes acids on the skin and gently washes away the grime of your day. A few tablespoons to a foot soak provides odor protection and relaxation and prepares your toes for a massage or pedicure.
Mouth cleansing and refreshing:
Sprinkle baking soda in your palm. Dip your wet toothbrush to cover and simply brush your teeth. Use this back to basics method to keep teeth clean, white and healthy. Swishing with a teaspoon of soda in half a glass of water neutralizes odors and leaves your mouth perfectly prepped for puckering up. :)
Please do a patch test if you have sensitive skin. This is an exfoliant so be gentle with yourself. If you have inflamed acne, dissolve a teaspoon of baking soda in a cup of water and do a rinse rather than scrub. Your skin is delicate. Do what feels good.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
The average woman eats 4 to 9 pounds of lipstick
in her lifetime, that’s somewhere between 481 and 1083 tubes.
A study conducted back in 2004 found that 28% of lipsticks contained cancer-causing chemicals. Modern lipsticks are formulated from upwards of 10,000 chemicals, 89% of which have never been tested for human safety.
Additionally, those who use lipstick for 3 days increase their risk of developing lupus by 40%.
Lead in lipstick? Turns out, the urban legend is true. In October 2007, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics tested 33 popular brands of lipsticks at an independent lab for lead content. The results: 61 percent of lipsticks contained lead, with levels ranging up to 0.65 parts per million.
Lead-contaminated brands included L'Oreal, Cover Girl and even a $24 tube of Dior Addict. In 2009, FDA released a follow-up study that found lead in all samples of lipstick it tested, at levels ranging from 0.09 to 3.06 ppm – levels four times higher than the levels found in the CSC study.
No Safe Dose
The recent science indicates there is no safe level of lead exposure. “Lead builds up in the body over time and lead-containing lipstick applied several times a day, every day, can add up to significant exposure levels. The latest studies show there is no safe level of lead exposure,” according to Mark Mitchell, M.D., MPH, president of the Connecticut Coalition for Environmental Justice.
“Lead is a proven neurotoxin that can cause learning, language and behavioral problems such as lowered IQ, reduced school performance and increased aggression. Pregnant women and young children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure, because lead easily crosses the placenta and enters the fetal brain where it can interfere with normal development,” according to Dr. Sean Palfrey, a professor of pediatrics and public health at Boston University and the medical director of Boston's Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.
“Since recent science suggests that there is truly no safe lead exposure for children and pregnant women, it is disturbing that manufacturers are allowed to continue to sell lead-containing lipsticks."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states: “No safe blood lead level has been identified.” The agency suggests avoiding all sources of lead exposure, including lead-containing cosmetics. (Read CDC's lead exposure prevention tips.)
The FDA released a follow-up study in 2009 that found much higher levels of lead in lipstick than reported by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics in 2007. A state bill to ban lead from lipstick passed the California Senate in 2008, but died after a massive industry lobby effort.
What You Can Do
Because lead is a contaminant not listed on lipstick ingredient labels, it's next to impossible for consumers to avoid. But don't let that dissuade you from doing something:
- E-mail, call or write to the companies that make your favorite lipstick shades and tell them that lead-free products are important to you.
- Send friends and family an e-card letting them know about this issue.
- Sign our petition for safe cosmetics.
This article courtesy of www.safecosmetics.org, an incredibly informative site. Check it out!
Fun fact: Do you know what happens when inspectors nab lead-filled and unsafe products that don't meet European standards? They are sent for resale in the US! Perfectly legal.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
I am a self-described "Green Makeup Artist". So what exactly does that mean? What makes me different than other makeup artists?
To put it simply, I offer skin and planet friendly beauty inspiration.
I truly believe that beauty should FEEL GOOD.
This is about far more than aesthetics for me. The cosmetics that fill my kit are comprised of ingredients that go beyond pretty colors - pigments come from antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables (vitamins retained), earth minerals (naturally anti-inflammatory, sun shielding, cooling), fresh herbal infusions, teas, coffee, cocoa, seaweed and salts, probiotics, active enzymes, nourishing honey, healing shea, a cornucopia of nutrient powerhouses infusing your largest and most absorbent organ with glowing, gorgeous, health - free of harmful chemicals, synthetic preservatives and genetically altered ingredients.
My concern for health and whole beauty goes beyond simply skin, but embraces my desire to do good for our planet and all creatures that share this home with us.
Every item I use is vegetarian. I do not purchase cosmetics from companies that test on animals or acquire ingredients from others who do. I aim for sustainability, right down to my bamboo brushes.
I am constantly learning and evolving, researching, striving to know more so I can offer more to you.
If I wouldn't put something IN your body, I will not put it ON your body.
I want to literally FEED YOUR SKIN.
I want to unveil your youthful glow, at any age.
I want to heal and hydrate, enhance and inspire.
I believe in COLOR, in having FUN with your makeup, in CELEBRATION and PLAY.
I don't believe in using scare tactics to prove a point. I want to educate, not frighten.
With so much positive to focus on, I embrace this rather than the alternative.
I am a makeup artist. Faces and bodies are my canvases. My tools come from the earth.
Inspiration is everywhere.
I am unbelievably grateful.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
My new business cards arrived today and while they are not quite perfect (I'm on the search for thick, velvety, recycled paper stock with a substantial weight to it to print on the for the next round), I am quite pleased.
Design by: Black and Blue Graphics
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I am a Green Makeup Artist, living and working out of Los Angeles and wherever the wind takes me. I want to expand HEALING beauty, environmental consciousness and evolution of what it means to indulge, to play, to be present with yourself and humanity, to embrace your own radiance, to laugh, dance, discover and glow from the inside out. I have begun my mission.
In this space, I want to share with you my journey as it unfolds. When I discover a gorgeous new shade of lipstick that is as safe as your morning smoothie, I'll post it here. When I learn about environmental or social issues I knew little about (or those I do), I'll share articles or my findings here. When I come across like minds on their own inspiring adventures, I'll introduce you. A good book, a quote that resonates, a recipe that evokes drool, a website worth browsing, a beautiful hiking spot or a new favorite restaurant... I want to share with you the things that bring me back to me, that remind me of my place on this planet, that awaken my determination to do more, to be more, to expect more, to live fully.
It is a wholesome and necessary thing for us to turn again to the earth and in the contemplation of her beauties to know of wonder and humility. - Rachel Carson