Introducing | Wearth London Ethical Department Store
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"We partner with British brands who fit our ethos of promoting sustainable and ethical shopping in the UK. Our aim is to create a bustling online community where people can find brands which align with their values, whilst creating a platform for small independent companies to grow."
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A big thank you to Wearth London for sponsoring this post. I recieved this product to review, but all opinions are my own.

Today I'm sharing something with you that I'm very excited about. Wearth London is a new ethical online department store offering beauty, home, and other categories of products that are all ethical, vegan, and sustainable. Wearth London champions independent brands and offers eco-conscious consumers access to these brands all in one place. Brands are chosen with ethics and sustainability in mind, with all options being vegan-friendly and zero-waste in direction. Their strict ethos of glass packaging, cruelty-free ingredients, and transparent production mean that you can easily shop and be sure that everything aligns with your own ethical priorities. 

After a browse of their website, I treated myself to these beautiful earrings from Smoke and Ash. Sarah of Smoke and Ash is an Essex-based jewellery-maker (yay local), and the majority of her pieces are made from recycled silver. In addition to this, her business cards are made from recycled t-shirts, she donates to the Marine Conservation Society, and each pieces comes with this wonderful reusable cotton bag for safe-keeping. The earrings are excellent quality and look so lovely when they catch the light. I have been wearing them non-stop since I recieved them. It sounds silly, but I also love that the hooks are flat rather than round... it's the little things. 

Shipping through Wearth London was quick and I was generally very happy with the buying process. I'd be lying if I said I didn't have my eye on a few of their other offerings like these stacking rings also from Smoke and Ash; these soaps from Soap Daze; and this beautiful ceramic expresso cup from Nina+Co. 

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I decided to ask Edward of Wearth London a few questions so we could get to know them a little better...

Introduce us to Wearth London.
Wearth is a sustainable and ethical online department store selling products from a range of independent UK brands which make high-quality stylish products whilst taking the environment seriously and being ethically minded. We launched at the end of October with 20 brands and now we have over 30, from natural skincare to reclaimed furniture. What I think sets us apart is our transparency and our aim to keep our customers informed. For example, we try and keep the amount of plastic sold to an absolute minimum and you can see exactly what packaging has been used for the product itself and the delivery. We also have a range of visual tags (e.g. handmade, plastic-free, made in the UK) making it easier for people to quickly see the main values of each product. We have also created a new innovative way of shopping where you can the discover products which have these certain values by using our shop by values page.

What was the inspiration behind starting your own online department store?
The idea for Wearth came about around a year ago when we were both still students (Imogen is still finishing her degree at Manchester). We felt firstly that retailers could do more to reduce their impact on the environment and the more we learnt about how plastic was destroying eco-systems and killing animals the more we felt we needed to do something. At the same time, we also could see lots of exciting new brands coming out which genuinely cared about their impact but often it was difficult to find them without really searching hard on the internet or social media. This is where we decided that there was a need for an online department store which brought all of these brands together, making it easier for people to find brands which have aligned values with theirs, be it being zero waste or made in the UK.

How would you describe your ethical ethos?
Our ethical ethos in general is being exploitation-free. This means that we try and ensure that the products we sell do not exploit the planet, factory workers or animals. In each of our departments we have certain criteria to help adhere to this ethos. For example, for our natural beauty department we have carefully selected brands which make their products in small batches in the UK with all natural vegan-friendly ingredients and that they also use glass packaging. Likewise, our jewellery is all handmade by small independent jewellery designers who use recycled silver, reducing the demand for newly-mined silver which has a devastating impact on the environment.

Why is offering vegan products important to Wearth?
Having all of our products vegan-friendly is something which was very important to us right from the start. Imogen has been a vegan for over 2 years and she felt that it was difficult to find products which not only aligned with her aim to live more zero waste but also were vegan. I have been vegetarian for over a year now and we both wanted to create an online store where people could shop with confidence knowing no harm was caused to animals. As the animal agriculture is also one of the leading causes of devastation via pollution, climate change and deforestation, we also wanted to ensure we weren't supporting these industries in any way. 

If you see anything you like, you can 10% off your first order by signing up to the Wearth London newsletter!

 

Conscious Changes
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Today I wanted to talk about a bit of a hot topic, and that's the idea of living slower and more consciously. I have touched on this before in my posts on easy zero waste changes and my 2017 good intentions. 2018 is going to be a big year: I shall my finishing my Masters degree and hopefully, by the autumn, my boyfriend and I will have moved in to a place of our own.

Some of my goals for 2017 included keeping up with my fitness, increasing my use of reusables, and buying less fast fashion. As much as I do thing there was a bit of a dip mid-year, at this point in 2018 and I am doing all these things. I now go to the gym for weight training 3-5 times a week, I use reusables 99.9% of the time (I even bought a safety razor), and I have rarely had to resort to fast fashion. I bought a few naughty things before my holiday in June after freaking out about finding clothes for the hot weather but, other than that a few recycled pieces from Monki/Weekday, all my purchases have been second-hand. A particular highlight are my amazing vegan Dr Marten boots that I purchased very lightly used from a seller on Depop (my new favourite app). I've also picked up a few really lovely pieces of workout wear from ethical and recycled brand Sundried via their Amazon shop. I've been super impressed with everything and I definitely plan on doing a post about a few more sustainable activewear brands.

I've been trying to pare down my belongings (and my environmental impact) this year in preparation for moving out around autumn-time. This seems like a never-ending process. My life still seems to create a lot of waste and so I feel like I am forever getting rid of bags of stuff but not actually getting anywhere in terms of de-cluttering my belongings. For now, I have another wardrobe purge planned for this month and then hopefully I can tackle one area of my life a month until I see some improvements. One area that I have managed to pare down is my beauty drawer and so you may be seeing less and less beauty posts in these parts. I have a few reviews to get out but after that, I plan on really only buying what I need and buying them as sustainably as possible. One makeup brand that is particularly intriguing me for this reason is Canadian brand Elate Cosmetics but unfortunately there is not currently an EU/UK stockist. They use sustainable bamboo packaging and many of their products (also vegan) are available as refills. If I'm honest, I've just got a bit sick of all the plastic in the green beauty space.

This was just a short update but hopefully soon you'll be seeing lots of lovely new content on KV. As ever, if you have any suggestions for content - especially in the fields of sustainability and minimalist-type stuff - please let me know either by email or via Twitter!

 

6 Products for That Vegan Summer Glow (in Winter!)
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This article was first published on the now defunct LoveLula Blog and features products provided by them. It has been re-published on Katie Vibes with their permission. 

The weather is questionable; cold, windy - but it's time to get that glow - that vegan glow. A vibrant wholefoods plant-based diet helps along glowing skin but everyone can benefit from a bit of help. Here are six great products that offer the serious glow-factor without any animal-derived ingredients...

 

Prepping for that winter fake tan

In order to maximise your skin-safe tan, prep your body with a good body scrub and oil. Sukin offer various affordable products in these categories and bonus - everything is 100% vegan-friendly. I've picked out Sukin's BioNatural Skin Oil as it's a great basic body oil. It absorbs quickly and is non-offensive in terms of scent. Even if you don't quite get time to exfoliate, this oil will leave you with wonderfully soft and smooth-feeling limbs. Prep-aside, Eco by Sonya's Winter Skin is hands-down the best vegan self-tanning moisturiser. It's easy to apply, leaves no streaks and smells lovely - no tell-tale fake tan smells in these parts!

 

Face time

For the face, a solid skincare routine is important if you want glowing skin. The best areas to invest in would be a brightening face oil and a decent exfoliating mask. My top pick for the latter is something I've spoken about many-a-time, the Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel MaskThis mask is quick to use (as no mixing is involved) and as long as you skin isn't super sensitive, it's suitable for most skin types. I find that I only need to apply this mask for 10 minutes to be left with brighter and smoother skin.

I like to follow up a good exfoliating mask with a moisturising and balancing face oil. And the best oils for glow contain naturally brightening ingredients like rosehip oil. Isla Apothecary's Immortelle Scar + Blemish Oil is a great choice as it can be used on both the face and body. As well as rosehip oil, it contains many other ingredients targeted towards fading pigmentation and brightening the skin.

 

Emphasising the glow

Finally any natural glow can be tastefully accentuated with the right products. Inika's Organic BB Cream Foundation offers a fabulous light-to-medium coverage base that evens and brightens the skin. Its finish is semi-matte without being flat. It provides a decent amount of coverage without being too heavy. Shown here is one of the sample sizes (available at LoveLula) which are great if you aren't 100% sure of your shade. For reference, I use Cream for fair to light skin tones that lean neutral or yellow. I have done a full review of this product here.

Of course, a highlighter is also a must in this case and I really love the Ere Perez Versatile Vanilla Highlighters. I use Falling Star as its rose gold tone is perfect for paler skins. Alternatively, Sun Halo offers a deeper bronzey look for medium and darker skin tones. These cream highlights are very easy to blend and add just the right amount of glow for any vegan makeup look.

What are some of your favourite products for achieving a vegan-friendly glow?

This post contains affiliate links.

Review: Inika Certified Organic BB Cream Foundation
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When I really fall in love with a product, it often happens that I forget to write a proper review as I'm too busy loving and using it. As much as this is a good thing, it often means I fail to share my fabulous discoveries. This is much exemplified by my feelings towards the Inika Certified Organic BB Cream Foundation*.  I fell in love with this product as soon as I started using it and I proceeded to use it almost religiously over the latter part of summer and autumn. I have always preferred the texture of BB creams to traditional foundations as, as much as I do suffer from acne, I do not enjoy the feeling or look of anything too full coverage. I like my skin to look like skin. This is definitely the feeling that I get with the Inika BB cream. It offers enough coverage to even out redness and cover small blemishes but is still natural enough to preserve my skin's own look and glow.

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I am using the shade 'Cream,' which despite not being the palest shade (shock horror), blends out into a shade that works perfectly for my neutral/yellow-toned skin. I was originally worried about about the formula being too moisturising for my combination skin. Luckily it is just fine and any excess oil is kept at bay with some powder, either translucent or a powder foundation for some extra coverage on special occasions. I am very much glad that it does not contain any coconut oil - something that is very common with BB creams - and so, even with all the oils, it has never been too heavy or caused any breakouts. 

It comes with the familiar BB cream claims of being a foundation, moisturiser, and primer in one but I will admit that I am yet to use it without some other kind of moisturiser underneath. This is mainly due to its lack of SPF (possibly my only criticism), and so I have been using it along with my favourite Hynt Beauty SPF - a mainstay of my long and everygrowing list of products to review on the blog.

If you are looking for a BB cream, I would urge you - no matter your skin type - to try a sample. Inika samples are readily available (and very well-priced) via the Lovelula website and have free delivery worldwide.

This post contains affiliate links.