Category Archives: Pulchritude Critique

Review: Oyin Handmade Honey Hemp Conditioner

Oyin Handmade Honey Hemp Conditioner

This product was purchased by Nature’s Pulchritude. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

“Oh, Honey. It’s a natural humectant… nature’s gift for glowing, supple hair. Ah, Hemp Oil. With an incredibly rich array of Fatty Acids to ensure well-nourished tresses. Oh! Ah! Oyin’s Honey-Hemp Conditioner! How could it possibly be improved? Perhaps by adding just the smallest touch of Silk Protein and a generous dollop of Aloe Vera Gel… just to take the succulence over the top. ;o)”

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I first started using this product about 4-5 years ago. I wanted to try the products for a few month and eventually got my hands on their ‘snack pack.’ I have since purchased 2 of the 33 ounce bottles. This product was pivotal on my natural hair “journey” and has been a staple. I use this conditioner both as a rinse out and deep conditioner, and have also experimented with using it as a leave-in. It is a fantastic moisturizer and leaves my hair feeling like silk!

Product

This is a fantastic conditioner. Great ingredients, great quality all around. This product does what it claims. The 33 ounce bottle is very convenient because it has a pump. A little goes a long way. 1 33 ounce bottle last me about a year with minimum biweekly use. It has a moderately thick consistency–not runny, not stiffly thick, just right and easily spreadable.

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Scent

Sweet Citrus. That is the best way to describe how Honey Hemp conditioner smells. It smells really, really, really good. Depending on the products you use after conditioning the faint scent of the product will linger in your hair.

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Moisture

Nourish and Moisture. Check, Check. This product does a great job moisturizing my hair. It works well as a rinse out, but works better as a deep conditioner. 30 minutes underneath a hooded dryer is enough. The moisturized feeling is not from a heavy silicones, waxes, etc. but from true moisturization! My hair feels moisturized after completely rinsing the product out of my hair. [Author’s Note: My hair type is predominately 4a, normal porosity, moderate density]

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Detangling

I typically don’t use this product to detangle but it does work well for detangling. My hair is so well moisturized it does not re-tangle at all after detangling, which makes styling much easier.

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EnviroFactor
Ingredients: Purified Water, Organic Aloe Vera Gel, Behentremonium Methosulfate (and) Cetearyl Alcohol (emulsifier derived from colza oil), Honey, Virgin Hemp Oil, Coconut Oil, Vegetable Glycerine, Hydrolized Silk, Citrus Essences, Fragrance, Optiphen (preservative), and LOVE!

The only questionable ingredient in this product is optiphen, which is a mixture of Phenoxyethanol and Caprylyl Glycol. Phenoxyethanol is widely used in natural products and prompted my series “Preservatives in Natural Products.” I don’t think this ingredient is cause for concern, but I’d still like more unbiased peer reviewed studies to fully deem this ingredient Safe!

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4.85/5 Globes

Nature’s Pulchritude All-Star!

Highly recommended!

Have you tried this product? What did you think?

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Review: Nubian Heritage Coconut & Papaya Soap

Nubian Heritage Coconut & Papaya Soap

This product was purchased by Nature’s Pulchritude. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

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I picked this product up in the natural product section of a local grocery store. I had been thinking about switching from castile soap to a true (saponified fat) bar soap and stumbled upon Nubian Heritage soaps. This product didn’t catch my eye when I was looking at their line online, but I figured I should try their soaps before I went making a big order.

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Product

This is a very high quality product. This soap fully cleanses my skin, but does not leave it feeling stripped. It leaves it feeling quite moisturized. The soap lasted through about 6 weeks of regular, exclusive use.

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Scent

I cannot pin point exactly what this smells like. It doesn’t quite give me coconut and likely leans more papaya. I’m not quite sure. The smell is moderate in the shower and does not linger on the skin afterwards, which can be a positive or negative depending on the person. It did not bother me much.

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Lather

This soap lathers really well! 2 rubs on a wet wash cloth and it was enough later for a full body cleanse. I often find that surfactant based soaps and my old castile soap need a bit more effort to lather well, and must be relathered at least 3 times. That was a big reason I decided to stop purchasing castile soap.

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EnviroFactor

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This product is a true soap, where fats (in this case organic coconut oil, organic shea butter, organic cocoa butter, and palm oil) react with an alkali, typically Potassium Hydroxide (KOH) or Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH). The alkali no longer remains after the reaction. No questionable ingredients, it is cruelty free, ethically sourced, and all ingredients are naturally derived. This is a winner!

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4/4 Globes

Nature’s Pulchritude MVP!

Have you tried this product? What did you think?

Review: Kiss My Face Ginger Mango Lip Balm

Kiss My Face Ginger Mango Lip Balm

This product was purchased by Nature’s Pulchritude. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

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My lip balm search has yielded yet another great lip balm! Read about my lip balm ‘incident’ and my first great lip balm find. This product moisturizes and keeps my lips soft and supple as I reapply throughout the day!

Product

Certified organic, great supple scent, and it keeps my lips moisturized. Fabulous product! I have not experienced any allergic reactions.

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Flavor/Scent

The ginger in this product is so subtle it is almost non existent. The mango is the dominant scent. The overall scent is light and does not linger longer than 2-3 minutes. The product is flavored organically, no synthetic fragrances!

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Texture

This lip balm is smooth and buttery. The castor oil combined with beeswax is a great pair and it makes the lip balm feel substantial on the lips. It is heavy enough to know it is there, but it melts into your lips after several minutes.

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EnviroFactor
This product has 8 ingredients, all of which are USDA certified organic. For more detailed information about the ingredients read its Label Poise. I’m not too sure what “flavor” means but it may be proprietary essential oils? That is my major gripe with this product.

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4/4 Globes

Nature’s Pulchritude MVP!

Fall Nails!

It has officially been fall for over a month, though the temperatures have been fluctuating between spring and fall.  Fall means goodbye bright, vibrant colors and hello to dark, vampy, smoldering shades.

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(L to R) Zoya Yuna, Zoya Lidia, China Glaze Manhunt (top), Zoya Sansa (middle), Formula X Law of Attraction (bottom), Zoya Ibiza, Zoya Aggie

China Glaze Manhunt*  (Creme)- This is a true royal blue that is simply gorgeous on the nail.  The wear of this polish is terrific!

Zoya Ibiza+(Shimmer)- This color is a deep blue with true blue glitter that gives the polish depth and looks “lit from within.”

Zoya Lidia+ (Creme)-  This is a gorgeous true purple.  Purple nail color has been high on my must have list for a while and this color delivered!

Formula X Law of Attraction (Metallic Glitter)-  Ever just sit and stare at your nails as the light reflects on it?  Yes, this polish will have you doing that.  Gorgeous blue contrasts a yellow gold tone.

Zoya Aggie+ (Metallic)- I have yet to wear this color but the duochrome gold/green goes great with a fall wardrobe palette while still giving a nice pop of color.

Zoya Sansa+ (Creme w/ Glitter)- A deep purple with red and silver glitter.

Zoya Yuna+ (Creme w/ Glitter)-  Muted green with subtle gold shimmer.  Very fall!

+Big 5 Free

*Big 3 Free

What are your favorite fall nail polishes?

Product Review: Zoya Armor (Lidia Preview)

Product Review: Zoya Armor Brand: Zoya Product: Armour ZoyaArmor4 Every nail polish aficionado knows that a good top coat is everything.  A good top coat adds shine, protects your nail color, extends wear, and preferably dries quickly though all layers of polish.  After my main top coat in rotation ran out, I decided to try a new top coat.  What better than a big 5 free top coat from one of my favorite nail brands?

“Nails are ready to take on the world with Zoya Armor Topcoat & UV Blocker. Add a protective, ultra-glossy, flexible shine to nail color and prevent exposure to yellowing UV rays. The super-brilliant, ultra-strong and flexible topcoat provides a chip-free coating to defend nail color against wear and tear.”

Bottle Shot
Bottle Shot

Formula The formula is easy to work with, it is not as thick as other top coats but at the same time is not thin.  This product lived up to part of its claims and maintained the integrity of the nail color it was applied to and did not yellow at all.

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Application Applying this top coat was very straight forward, it applies evenly in 2-3 brush strokes

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Shine Armour leaves a nice shine on the nails rigt after application and after completely drying.

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Zoya Armor over Zoya Lidia
Zoya Armor over Zoya Lidia

Wear “Chip-free coating to defend against wear and tear?’  “Armour” is nothing short of a misnomer.  I can overlook this polish taking 3+ hours (!!!!) to dry, which resulted in a small nick in my polish, but this product did NOT protect my nail polish!  My polished chipped within 24 hours!  This is simply unacceptable!  I have tested this product with Zoya and other salon quality polishes with the same results.

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Tip-wear chipping within 24 hours
Tip-wear chipping within 24 hours

EnviroFactor ZoyaArmor3 The polish is big 5 free as it contains no Formaldehyde, Camphor, Formaldehyde Resin, Tolune, or Dibutyl Phthalate.  The remaining ingredients are typical of what you would find in a nail polish and some are likely toxic to the lungs and nervous system, which is not at all surprising considering it is nail polish.  It is best to polish nails in a well ventilated area and do not inhale over an open bottle.

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If I had no prior experience with Zoya products I would be turned off from the brand, however, all of their polishes have been great albeit this is the first top/base coat or treatment I have used from the brand.  I had to go and buy another bottle of my usual top coat weeks after purchasing this product. This product retails for $10 and should be of much better quality, period.  Armour is part of Zoya’s color lock system and is followed by quick dry drops.  It should be noted these quick dry drops retail for $16 for .5 ounce bottle.  :/  I will not be purchasing this product again nor will I try the quick dry drops

3.7/5 Globes

Review: Dr. Bronners Orange Ginger Organic Lip Balm

Dr. Bronner’s Orange Ginger Organic Lip Balm

This product was purchased by Nature’s Pulchritude. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

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Who doesn’t want soft supple lips? A good lip balm will moisturize your lips upon application, keep them soft even once the lip balm absorbs into your lips, and keeps dry, cracked, chapped lips at bay. This lip balm delivered! I have spoken in the past about less than favorable experiences with other products and I am elated to have found this product!

Product

This is a very high quality product. It moisturizes my lips and I have not experienced any allergic reactions.

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Flavor/Scent

The listed scent is orange ginger, but the scent of this is all ginger! The orange is much more subtle, if at all noticeable. I tried this flavor because it was different–how often do you see a ginger lip balm?! The scent/flavor can be a bit strong at times and lingers for maybe 20 minutes. It is not enough to give you a headache, but it can be a little overwhelming some days. The good think is that this product is naturally scented so you don’t have o worry about synthetic chemicals!

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Texture

The lip balm applies smoothly and is very light on the lips! Beeswax is not the primary ingredient so you don’t feel a ‘heaviness’ on your lips. The beeswax is just enough to keep the lip balm solid, even in warmer temperatures.

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EnviroFactor

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This product has 7 ingredients, 6 of which are organic. This Orange Ginger Organic Lip Balm is certified organic and non-GMO project verified. For more detailed information about the ingredients for this product read Label Poise 44.

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3.9/4 Globes
Nature’s Pulchritude All-Star!

Product Review: Formula X Heroic

Brand: Formula X
Color: Heroic
Collection: The Shifters Fall 2013

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Shiny. Sparkles. Gold.   Metallics are typically not my go to polish, but there are some metallic polishes that are just so captivating.  Heroic is one of those polishes.  Imagine standing in the sun slightly moving your fingers so you can watch your polish sparkle.  This polish is one of my first encounters with Formula X, which is exclusively sold by Sephora.

Product/Formula

This is a great polish!  The packaging is great and so are the contents!  The square top is removable leaving a smaller handle for polishing.  The formula is easy to work with.

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Application

Applying this polish was a breeze.  It had great coverage, even with just one coat, was not difficult to work with, and it did not apply streaky.  This is a great formula!

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Color

Sephora describes Heroic as “lilac and gold metallic.”  The combination of the lilac and gold very complementary though the color is not as vivid on the nail as it appears in the bottle.  The gold flakes in the polish are quite visible in sunlight at the right angle.

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Wear

The color wore quite well.  Usual tip wear and light chipping after 5-7 days.

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EnviroFactor

Ingredients: Ethyl Acetate, Butyl Acetate, Nitrocellulose, Adipic Acid/Neopentyl Glycol/Trimellitic Anhydrie Copolymer, Isopropyl Alcohol, Trimethyl Pentanyl Acid/Tromethamine Copolymer (+/ ), Titanium Dioxide (Nano) (CI 77891), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Mica, Bismuth Oxychlorine (CI 77163), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77499), Ferr Ammounium Ferrocyanide (CI 77510), [14 additional pigments].

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The polish is big 5 free as it contains no Formaldehyde, Camphor, Formaldehyde Resin, Tolune, or Dibutyl Phthalate.  The remaining ingredients are typical of what you would find in a nail polish and some are likely toxic to the lungs and nervous system, which is not at all surprising considering it is nail polish.  It is best to polish nails in a well ventilated area and do not inhale over an open bottle.

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I really like this color.  It was a pleasant experience from a new brand.  Heroic is a gorgeous color with a great formula.  Formula X polishes retail exclusively at Sephora for $12.50.  Though that is a bit above my usual polish spend, however, the polish was not a disappointment.

4.5/5 Globes
Nature’s Pulchritude All-Star!

Product Review: Oz Naturals 20% Vitamin C Serum

This item was provided by OZ Naturals for review. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

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Product Details
Consistency: Liquid
Color: Clear
Scent: None
Environmentally Friendly?: Yes, Recyclable Glass Container. 72% Organic Ingredients
Cruelty Free?: Yes

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Vitamin C Serums are the hot new item on the beauty scene. Vitamin C Serums are used to brighten skin, fade dark spots, and even out skin tone and texture. The product does this by neutralizing free radicals, due to the high antioxidant content of vitamin C, and stimulating collagen production, which rids of fine lines and wrinkles.

Product
This product is very simple to use and appears to be of good quality. The dropper makes it easy to use. I have seen an improvement in my skin, but am not sure if I can solely attribute it to this serum.

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Scent
The serum has no scent which is great for evening use.

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Texture

The serum is slightly more viscous than water which makes for fairly easy application.

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EnviroFactor

The biggest concerns in this product are (2s)-2-amino-5-guanidinopentanoic acid, carbomer, phenoxyethanol and ethyl hexyl glycerin. Organic Herbal Infusion is a concern because it is not properly labeled, unless the blend is considered a proprietary trade secret. The assumption is that herbs are infused in water, but that is a stretch.

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3.3/4 Globes

Overall, I have nothing bad to say about this product, but I also can not give glowing reviews.  I have been using this product daily for about 2 weeks, which may not be a long enough time for me to see results.  I will update this post in the future!

Spring Nails

It is officially spring, though temperatures are not quite feeling that way yet.  Like most people, my nail polish choices vary with season–rich, dark colors in winter, neutrals in fall, and pastels in spring.  Here are my all time top Spring Nail choices!

 

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L-R: China Glaze Light As Air, Zoya Blu, China Glaze For Audrey, China Glaze Refresh Mint, OPI Jinx

 

China Glaze’s Light as Air, For Audrey, and Refresh Mint are long time (6 years) favorites!  Light as Air and Refresh Mint are both from the same collection, Up Up and Away.  Zoya Blu and OPI Jinx (Liquid Sand/Textured) are new additions that work will for spring.  Zoya polish is Big 5 Free, OPI and China Glaze are Big 3 Free.

 

  What are your favorite nail colors for Spring?

Product Review: PURE & Essential Minerals Dead Sea Mud Mask

These items were provided by PURE & Essential Minerals for review. All opinions are that of Nature’s Pulchritude and have not be influenced in any way, shape, or form.

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A face mask is a great addition to most skin routines.  Mineral masks, such as those made from clay or mud, are great for normal, combination, and oily skin, and are known to draw impurities out of the skin.  Mud from the Dead Sea is lauded for its high mineral content and various skin benefits. I have used a Dead Sea mud mask in the past and had great results with it and was eager to try this product by PURE & Essential Minerals.

1. The natural silica found in the black mud hardens on the skin once you apply the mask and extracts toxins and impurities located deep in the skin layers, and also attaches to dead skin cells. The result is clear looking skin, with clean pores and even skin tone.

2. Pure & Essential Minerals Dead Sea Mud Mask contains natural minerals like magnesium, calcium, sulphur, bromide, iodine, sodium, zinc and potassium, which are known to treat, detoxify, and cleanse the skin.

3. Poor blood circulation can lead to an uneven skin tone, patches on the skin, and may even cause wrinkles. A weekly facial mud mask can dramatically increase blood flow to your skin cells and help you achieve healthier and plumper looking skin.

Product Details:
Consistency: Whipped, Moist
Color: Dark Grey
Scent: Eucalyptus
Environmentally Friendly?: Yes, Recyclable Plastic Container. >90% Organic Ingredients
Cruelty Free?: Yes

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Product

This is a good product. The quality of the mask is very good.  So far I have enjoyed the results from using it and will continue to use it in the future!

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Scent

This product has a moderate Eucalyptus scent. It is not overpowering.

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Texture

This product has a great consistency. It is not too thick or too thick. It has a ‘whipped’ feel to it, thus has a fluffy texture. The mask spreads easily.

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EnviroFactor

This product contains all naturally derived ingredients, of which all but 2 are organic. It is worth mentioning that Dead Sea Mud (or any other mineral clays) are not certified organic because they are minerals and do not need the designation. The only ingredient in this product that deserves a further inquiry is Willow Bark Extract as some information I have read has had it on my radar.

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3.93/4 Globes

Nature’s Pulchritude All-Star!

 

Overall this is a really good product, I will update this review after consistent use!