Katie Vibes
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Six Vegan Summer Essentials
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This article was first published on the now defunct LoveLula Blog. It has been re-published on Katie Vibes with their permission. 

It's June and that marks the beginning of the UK's (usually slightly average) summer. With that aside, I have some most definitely above average vegan-friendly products to share with you that are absolutely essential for any measure of warm or sunny weather. For once, I thought I'd stray from the usual suspects like SPF - you shouldn't need me to tell you that's essential. However, if it's tanning or soothing skincare, I have you covered!

Fair girls like me sometimes need a little help during the summer months - you know, to avoid blinding people with our gleaming (and almost glowing) pale skin. For this I've been turning to the Eco by Sonya Winter Skin,* a natural and organic gradual tanning moisturiser. This Australian product leaves your skin with a lovely glow. Using this gradual moisturiser rather than a full-on fake tan helps to avoid stark contrasts and/or streaks. In spite of this, you'll still need to wash your hands thoroughly afterwards to avoid those tell-tale orange fingers!

Alternatively, if you're going to go down the real sun route, you're going to need a decent after-sun. Enter the Green People Hydrating After Sun. This is my absolute favourite dedicated after-sun (rather than just aloe) and I'm completely addicted to the scent. It smells really fresh and minty which makes it nice and cooling for stressed and angry sun-kissed skin. I've gone through multiple bottles of this and it's a repurchase every summer!

It also comes in a 100ml bottle making it super handy for your travels. For those sun-kissed faces, treat your complexion to a super soothing and hydrating mask in the form of the Skin & Tonic Coco Mask. This mask is one of my absolute favourites and it is a great all-rounder with clarifying ingredients such as kaolin clay as well as hydrating ones like coconut milk powder and aloe leaf powder. Its light coconut and lavender scent screams summer. Make sure to also treat your skin to regular sprays of a good soothing rosewater such as Balm Balm Rose Floral Water Hydrosol that also comes in travel size.

Finally, be sure to keep the mozzies away with a good insect repelling product. I suggest Odylique Organic Mosimix* that doubles up as a super moisturising and quick absorbing body oil. Multi-tasking products such as this are an absolute must when it comes to packing light. And then, if citronella isn't your scent, cover it up with one of Balm Balm's single note perfumes. Bergamot* is a great option for summer but Balm Balm offer lots of alternatives such as Rose Geranium, Mandarin, or Ylang Ylang!

What will you be relying on this summer?

Review: Ere Perez Carrot Colour Pots
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Ever since I got interested in green beauty, I have lusted after the perfect multi-purpose colour pot a la RMS. Unfortunately, the cult favourites are not vegan-friendly due to their use of beeswax. Every now and then I similar product comes on to the market but I am yet to be impressed. That is, until now. Ere Perez have intrigued me ever since they first popped onto LoveLula. Hailing from Australia, Ere Perez offers super high-quality natural and organic makeup that is more often than not, vegan-friendly. Although they do occasionally use beeswax, I am happy to say that these colour pots are totally bee-free. 

The Carrot Colour Pots* have been an absolute pleasure to use and I am happy to have finally found something like this that is both vegan and up to the job. The two shades I have tried, Holy and Healthyare beautiful on both lips and cheeks and I have been using them non-stop since I received them. Amazingly, I believe they are also dye-free and so attest to the fact that beautiful bright colours can be achieved without carmine or dyes. Holy is a wonderful bitten berry colour (that leans more pink than it does below), and Healthy is a blush nude that looks very subtle and well, healthy on the cheeks. Although the shade range is limited, it covers most ground and you're sure to find a shade that you like. 

They seem to last really well on me (which is a feat with my oily skin) and I'm yet to experience any irritation or break-outs. I was a little dubious of the caprylic as it is a form of coconut oil, but my skin doesn't seem to react in the same way that it does with the raw kind. With that in mind, these seem to be relatively acne-friendly which is brilliant and very much welcomed for a cream product. Ere Perez seem to be ticking all of the boxes here.

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In addition to the vegan ingredients and lovely shades, I also appreciate that they come in little glass jars. Although the lid is plastic, I'm sure it'll be easy to repurpose the packaging once the product is either used-up or expired. I really appreciate this fact and sustainability can (ironically) often be lacking within the green beauty space. Ere Perez have been making some really significant changes in their packaging recently and it has been refreshing to see. Their new skincare range is a great example of this and I would be lying if I wasn't keen on adorning my dressing table with more of their beautiful frosted glass.

Will you be trying the Colour Pots from Ere Perez?

This post contains affiliate links. 
Thank you in advance if you choose to use one!

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...

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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!

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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.

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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.

Recent Empties #9

Up until now I've been sharing the occasional empty product on my Instagram. However, due to the size of today's selection, I thought it best to revert back to empties blog posts. And what better way to ease myself back into blogging after a particularly gruelling final semester (Yep, my undergrad is FINISHED - EEP). Hopefully I can get lots of lovely content out to you guys and try and get a bit ahead before my Masters degree - double EEP - begins in September.

I won't go through everything as there's rather a lot but here are some of the highlights...

I finally used up two of my long-standing favourite skincare products, the Green People Beauty Boost Skin Restore* and the Pai Kukui & Jojoba Bead Brightening Exfoliator. I've done a full review of the GP product as I find it works great as a light moisturiser before makeup, but also can add an extra kick to your night time routine when your skin is looking a bit worse for wear. I also really love the Pai exfoliator but for some reason I don't think I have ever properly mentioned it on the blog... Nevertheless, I shall be repurchasing both of these at some point.

I also waved goodbye to a few of the goodies I got to try as a (former) member of the LoveLula Accredited Blogger Programme. Namely, the The Earth Works Cleansing Oil*, MOA Fortifying Green Bath Potion*, and the Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel Mask*. I definitely recommend the latter two - although the bath potion seemed to irritate my eczema, the scent is amazing and you should definitely try it if you don't find you react to essential oils. The Madara AHA mask is a wonderful chemical exfoliant option and I find it to be really effective at sloughing away dead skin cells and encouraging a good glow. The TEWC cleansing oil was good and did the job but unfortunately I found it to be a little heavy for my skin. However, it has a really amazing price point and is a good one to check out if you want to get into oil cleansing.

To avoid this post getting too long, here's a list of everything I've used up this time:
- Terre Verdi Good Oils Cleansing Oil*
- Green People Quinoa & Prebiotics Deodorant*
- Living Naturally Organic Herbal Hair Rinse Conditioner
- Avalon Organics Volumizing Rosemary Conditioner
- MOA Fortifying Bath Potion*
- Green People Beauty Boost Skin Restore*
- First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads (no longer cf)
- Schmidt's Cedarwood & Juniper Stick Deodorant
- Brija Illuminate Eye Balm (not finished - smells a little funky)
- Zuzu Luxe Liquid Eyeliner
- Madara Active AHA Brightening Peel Mask sample*
- Pai Kukui & Jojoba Bead Brightening Exfoliator
- The Earth Works Cosmetics Cleansing Oil*
- Eco Bath London Skin Conditioning Bath Soak (different packaging but I believe this is the same)