Toner, part 2

A couple of weeks after I swore off purchasing toner, and a week after I ran out of my trusty Aveda toner, my skin broke out. Was it the cause of no-toning? I highly doubt this, and instead attribute it to a hormonal flux. However, my skin felt greasy and unhappy, and going for the emotional need vs. physical need, I bought Earth Science Clarifying Herbal Astringent. I chose this toner after looking at a whole host of options, with price being a concern, and recognition of ingredients being the other. Drug store options were right out (aside from the standard Witch Hazel, which is available not in the cosmetic section, but in first aid.) I ended up going into PCC (a local food coop) and looking at the familiar bottles of “natural” potions. I wanted to avoid alcohol in my toner/astringent, so that put some of the more natural of the natural right out. I remembered liking Earth Science in the past, and I found it included vinegar, which a previous commenter had recommended. I was sold with these ingredients:

Purified Water, Witch Hazel Extract, Glycerin (vegetable), Apple Cider Vinegar, Sage Extract, Rosemary Extract, Horsetail Extract, Cucumber Extract, Sea Kelp Extract, Peppermint Extract, Panthenol, Sulfur, Camphor, Sodium PCA, Zinc Sulfate. Sorbic Acid, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Allantoin, Hyaluronic Acid, Ascorbic Acid, Fragrance, Cellulose Gum, Annatto Extract.

I find the toner to be refreshing – which is just NICE sometimes. Also, it doesn’t seem to have done my skin any harm, which is also a plus.

In my brief Google searches, I haven’t found where Earth Sciences (or it’s parent, Earth Essentials, Inc) come from, other than perhaps California. Perhaps it is in the same category as Kiss My Face — relatively harmless face and body care, small company, American based, etc. I’ll continue to look.


About two years ago I started buying toner to round out my face-washing regimen. I was working in Whole Body at Whole Foods and I got a freebie of Zia toner, and figured it was a good idea. Afterall, it’s supposed to prime your face for moisturizer.

In my recent mood for scaling down consumption (and waste), I started pondering my use of toner. I’ve been using Aveda toner for the past two years, and I like the smell, and it’s a refreshing spritz. However, the ingredients make me wonder just why I bother. Alcohol, essential oils, water, some unpronouncable chemicals that I’m sure are to make me more youthful. Why bother?

Ashes, a human I was acquainted with years ago, had the most lovely hair I could imagine. It was red, curly and long. Ashes told me that s/he didn’t use shampoo and conditioner. Afterall, shampoo just strips your hair of natural oils, and conditioner just replaces them. What a racket! Jon posited that toner sets the stage for moisturizer by further drying your face. Huh, it just kind of makes sense, especially with the alcohol content.

A spritz of toner is refreshing, but is it worth the wasted packaging and the shipping costs of a product that is mostly water?

I’ve decided for now to give up my toner. It’s $20 I save, along with packaging.

In other related news — I’ve found a local mineral make-up company, Terra Firma Cosmetics. I haven’t tried it on my face yet, but it’s something to look into — if I don’t give up make-up altogether. 🙂 I’m also ecstatic to find B & Lu, a plus-sized clothing retailer that lists many clothes, if not all, as being made in the USA. I dig that. I’m also learning to love the hunt for good clothing in thrift stores.

You Have Been Consumed

I try to blog weekly, but last week my project turned out to be a tad too ambitious. I had planned to continue to lay out the horrible truths of how we’ve all been tricked into consuming more of the same thing despite ourselves. It turns out that the horrible truths I was going to shed light on are far too numerous for one blog post.

I have become increasingly aware as to how much we DON’T know about the products we purchase. Hopefully, this would have become apparent last year with the e. coli spinach, or at least this year with the melamine infused cat food from China. The problem is far greater than our food supply. Try doing your normal shopping and ONLY buying products stating “Made in the USA” — food included? Then, see how many of your commonly purchased items come from China and consider what your dollars might be going into, such as prison labor (political prisoners, even!), sweatshop conditions and toxic waste in the Chinese countryside. The whole task gets even more difficult when you’re looking at items that have more than one major ingredient. This is what makes supplements and body care so hard to digest into the two words, “good” and “bad.” It’s not just about the end product, where it’s made or how far it’s shipped. Nor is it as simple as the labels, vegan, biodegradable, not tested on animals, organic and natural.
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Deliberate Consumption – Beauty

Deliberate Consumption is my new favorite thing. So much my new favorite thing, that it really is the only topic I want to write about on this blog these days.

What I mean when I say “deliberate consumption” is that my intention for myself is to make deliberate, careful choices about what I consume. From just what I see in print advertising and total real-estate of shopping institutions, I would say that my demographic (nearly 30, femme, white, middle class woman) is probably the most sought after for dollars. I may be overgeneralizing, and certainly have no facts to back this up, just my own observation, which being a nearly 30, femme, white , middle class woman may be scewed towards what I notice and take interest in. I’m trying desperately to overcome the idea that I “need” something, and figure out where these desires come from, and what the product I’m desiring really does for me.
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Bags! and plus-sized shopping, and good food

Gwen Stefani’s company, Harajuku Lovers, has some pretty funky bags available at Macy’s. While checking in to Macy’s yesterday to get some cosmetics, I was struck by the gratuitously cute bags, but what really struck me was the LeSportsac bags. Holy crap! Supercute Tokidoki bags overwhelp the cute of Harajuku Lovers. The price is a bit higher, but then again, this is better design and more durable (at least, more durable looking.) I bought a shoulder bag for going around Japan in a month. I was so impressed with the designs on the LeSportsac bags, that I purchased a another designer bag for the spring designed by French designer Fafi.
Continue reading “Bags! and plus-sized shopping, and good food”