Tag Archives: summer essentials

Tan Organic - 1st Day of Christmas Giveaways - StorybookApothecary.com

It has begun!

The first giveaway of 12 in my 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways Event!

If you missed my post, definitely click the link above so you can get the 411 on what brands are up for grabs!

I won’t be telling you which specific items are up for grabs until the giveaways go live because, well, I thought surprising you would be fun!

Definitely check back every day to enter a new giveaway for 12 days straight here on Storybook Apothecary – I’ll be giving away loads of amazing goodies from all my favorite brands!

Anyhow, onto today’s giveaway!

Today’s gift that’s up for grabs is the Tan Organic Natural Sunless Tanning Spray. You may remember me reviewing this lovely product over the past Summer. If not, check out my review for it here and then come back to enter once you see how brilliant it is!

If you want the gist on this amazing tanner, it’s an all natural, award-winning organic sunless tanning spray that hails straight from Ireland. It’s simple to use and gives a lovely, natural looking tan that is very easy to build up and looks so good, but without the sun damage!

Special thanks to Tan Organic for sponsoring this and sending me the item for giveaway – I truly appreciate it very much!

Sign up for the giveaway through rafflecopter – Enter Here!

Please Note – This giveaway and all the giveaways I’ll be holding every day for 12 days are Flash Giveaways – They will only be open for entries for 48 Hours so do Enter Right Away if you want a great chance at winning!

This giveaway closes December 7th, 2012.

Stay tuned here every day for 12 days straight for more chances to win great beauty (& a few jewelry!) items!

Light Botanical Body Care For Summertime!

Every time I get the chance to review beauty products from New Zealand, I feel so impressed and this botanical body care line is no different!

Kio Kio is a natural line of botanical body care products that includes lotions, washes, creams, mists and soaps that are all uniquely scented with natural plant extracts and essential oils that are native to New Zealand. I was recently sent one of their body washes and body lotions and I am loving them! They are both extremely pleasantly scented without being overwhelming and very effective for the Summer time!

The first item I was able to try was the Pacific Tiare Body Wash. It has “uplifting scent of Gardenia and the white flowers of New Zealand’s Ti Kauka tree”  and, although I normally hate products with gardenia, I really enjoyed the scent of this! It’ s a bit sweet, though very subtle, and it is super light! I don’t know why the picture above looks the way it does because this wash is more orange tinted than clear, though it is transparent like most gel looking body washes. This doesn’t include any SLS or TLS sulfate types in the formula so it’s very gentle to use and is more milky instead of foamy while still having a decent lather to it. I really love this body wash for the Summer! As they say, it really does smell like Summer! It just has a nice tropical aroma to it, plus it’s very light which I am loving at the moment given the amount of extreme heat we’ve been experiencing here in California. If you have extremely dry skin, I don’t think this would be nourishing enough, but it won’t cause any irritation or anything either as I’ve found it to be very gentle and calming, though it’s more of a gel type than a cream so it may not offer enough protective type moisture in the formula for those battling dryness. I really love this one and will certainly purchase this one in the future, though at $29 USD it may be considered expensive to some.

The next product I tried was this Citrus Petal Body Lotion. While I admit that I like the body wash above better than this lotion, it’s still really nice. I don’t like the scent of this as much as the body wash, but it has nice hydrating properties to it while still being very light and summery. It’s a really nice body lotion to use when you want to feel moisturized and soft without feeling overly oily, especially when it’s been over 100 F nearly every day for the past 2 weeks. I’ve really enjoyed this one for use in the super hot weather. It’s nice, softening, and smells pleasant yet subtle while also being very light and absorbed very quickly into the skin. This one is a bit more expensive at $39 USD, but it’s a very light and easily absorbed lotion so a little goes a long way and will last you a decent amount of time. I don’t think this is hydrating enough for someone with extremely dry skin, but it won’t cause any irritation and it’s nicely absorbed without leaving any greasy film or residue.

I highly recommend this awesome line of botanical products for summertime heat! They work really well together and are light enough that they don’t feel heavy or oily. They don’t leave any greasy residue or film on the skin and leave pleasantly subtle scents on the skin that won’t irritate sensitive skin types like myself. I also like that they are taking smart steps toward recycling and planet preservation and sustainability manufacturing practices. They have some really nice ingredients in the formulas including exotic and unique plant extracts from New Zealand that are certainly a nice treat!

Check out their full line of products – here!

What are your favorite Summer body care products?

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the samples sent to me from Kio Kio NZ for review purposes. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own irregardless of if and/or how I obtain products.

TanOrganic Giveaway Winner Announcement!

Awhile back, I did this post on Tan Organic’s amazing sunless tanner spray that works great for pale newbs like me! I also opened the giveaway and it’s now been closed (sorry).

Congrats to Naomi W. for winning this giveaway!

Please email me your mailing information so I can send you your prize!

Thanks so much to everyone who signed up!

More giveaways coming soon so stay tuned. 🙂

Thanks so much to TanOrganic for sending me this awesome product for review and giveaway!

Get Tan Organic Sunless Tanning Spray FREE With Purchase Of OilArganic!

Tan Organic is having a special deal!

If you purchase their New OilArganic, a moisturizing complex of 8 plant oils and rose fragrance meant to condition hair, skin and nails while it also diminishes stretch marks and scars, you can get a Full Size bottle of Tan Organic FREE! If you haven’t yet discovered the awesome-ness that is Tan Organic, check out my original post on it – here!

Check out the special – Here!

July Beauty Favorites!

  1. Neutrogena Healthy Skin 3-In-1 Concealer – I’ll be the first to admit I don’t seem to ever be getting enough sleep. I just stay up late, blogging away, reading blogs or books or just plain not sleeping. What can I say? I guess I’m just a night owl. This concealer is amazing. It takes me from dead to alive in less than 10 seconds and doesn’t break me out.
  2. Liz Earle’s Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser – I have been using this one all month long and absolutely love it! It’s my natural version of Noxzema; it deep cleans without being too abrasive or drying to my skin. It’s so gentle and the muslin cloth offers just enough exfoliation to give my skin a glow, but not irritate me. Definitely a keeper! This is the perfect cleanse + exfoliate combo for anyone who wants the results without having to put too much effort or thought in and it’s all natural.
  3. Vive Sana Solar to Polar Ultra SPF40 Natural Sunscreen – This sunscreen is really amazing. It combines sun protection with beneficial skin ingredients so your skin is well hydrated and nourished while it’s being shielded from the sun. The only thing is the formula is a bit thick for my taste, but click here to see how I’m making it work anyway.
  4. Makeup Forever Professional Yellow Gold Eye Shadow in N101 – This eye shadow is amazing and works in any and every makeup situation. I like to use it all over my lid on days when I don’t feel like doing my eye makeup and it looks really pretty without being over the top. Also, even though it looks white-ish, it’s actually a very soft gold so I’ve used it on my eyes’ inner corners and it gives a really nice awake effect. This is a great multi-use eye shadow; I use it pretty much every single day. I’ve used it in this makeup look in case you want to see it in action!
  5. Makeup Forever Professional Apricot Orange Blush in N25 – This blush is the PERFECT blush for anyone who wants a natural glow, especially the paler girls who struggle with finding the proper color that doesn’t look too pink, red or purple. This would work well for any skin tone; I’ve used it on my more tan friends to great effect as well, although it’s not eye popping; it just gives the skin a really amazing glow. This has worked well for really natural glow looks and also beach bronze looks as well.
  6. Living Nature Radiance Night Oil – This nighttime facial oil works super well for helping my skin stay nourished and radiant. It’s really light, easily absorbed into the skin and doesn’t break me out. Actually, I think it has been helping to treat any breakouts I do have. Plus, the ingredients are incredibly natural and include really rare plant extracts only found in New Zealand.
  7. TanOrganic 100% Natural Sunless Self Tanner Spray – This is the most natural looking tanner I have ever used, ever. It doesn’t make me look orange tinted like most ones I’ve tried (L’Oreal, Sally Hansen, Etc.). Instead, I look really naturally bronzed. It’s really buildable; seriously a few sprays and you get a nice tan color so it would be really easy to over do it. If you end up purchasing some of this amazing tanner, go light on the first try. The color intensifies over a few hours time no joke, but the results are lovely and the spray makes this virtually streak free and idiot proof for tanning incompetents such as myself.
  8. ILIA Beauty Tinted Lip Conditioner in Blossom Lady – This tinted lip conditioner gives a really nude type pink color to my lips that is super natural looking and also helps keep my lips hydrated. In this SoCal heat, my lips get chapped in what feels like every 5 seconds so this has surely saved me from that! I’ve been carrying it around in my purse all month long to reapply throughout the day.

So, those are my beauty favorites for July; what have you been loving this month?

Get A Super Safe and Sexy Glow with Tan Organic’s 100% Natural Sunless Spray Tanner Review + GIVEAWAY !

A month or so ago, I was given the chance to try this incredible sunless spray tanner from TanOrganic, an Irish company that offers the first ever sunless tanning product made from 95% certified organic ingredients and is 100% natural. Created by one Irish woman’s quest for the most natural fake tan on the market, this has won many awards including the Irish Times Best Tan / Value Award for 2011. Check out what other awards they’ve won – here.  It comes in a very sturdy glass spray bottle and each order right now comes with a free TanErase Ultimate Exfoliator, a tool used to remove the tanner from your skin. Also, they offer a Tanning Mitt  (pictured below) you can purchase to help with the application of this sunless spray tanner, if you like. Personally, they didn’t send me one to use, so I just used those disposable latex gloves, but if you prefer to have your own dedicated tanning applicator mitt, theirs is decently priced.

Anyhow, on with the review! The texture of this spray is really very water, easily spreadable onto the skin and soaks right in with a bit of massaging. I actually find this to be a pretty fool proof product. Incredibly so, because I’ve tried many a drugstore fake tanner with disastrous results which is why I normally avoid a fake tan. They just make me look orange or, worse, dirty, but this one gives an amazingly realistic looking tan that I love!

First off, for application, I definitely recommend you either buy their tanning mitt or otherwise use some latex gloves to apply because it is a guarantee to stain your hands. That being said, it’s extremely easy to apply and you shouldn’t experience streaking at all as long as you spray an even layer thoroughly over your skin and massage it into your skin until it’s all soaked up. If you’re like me, prone to accidents and messes, you may want to consult their very helpful application demo video – here! It is also recommended that you apply it in circular motions, massaging it into the skin and then you have to wait 6-8 hours before rinsing it off. My advice – take a book or your laptop into the bathroom and hang out for a bit while you “tan” away. Once you’re done and all rinsed, be sure to use only gentle body and face washes as well as a lot of moisturizer to prolong the life of the tan.

All in all, this is a really great tan product!

I would actually go so far as to say this is THE BEST self tanning product I have ever tried.

It gives you a really natural and realistic looking tan without toxic or harmful ingredients and actually includes a lot of beneficial organic and natural ones – Aloe, Orange Peel, Hyaluronic Acid, and Ginger and Honey extracts among others which help to improve the skin’s condition while you achieve that perfect shade of Summer.

Plus, I really like that it comes out in a watery spray because its a lot easier to use than the mousse / cream / lotion varieties which seem to get onto every surface of my bathroom.

This is an especially awesome self tan product for those with fairer skin because it shows up. Often times, I’ve found that a lot of the self tanning products I’ve purchased in the past for “light” or “fair” tones just don’t show up at all and the “dark” tones make me look ridiculous. This one is just right and totally buildable if you’re on the darker side of things 😉 . I definitely recommend you check it out because it’s one of the safest ways to “tan” or even fake tan, is incredibly simple to use and has a lovely natural color for that Summer glow we all want without the damage.

Check it out – here! 

Learn more about TanOrganic – here! 

…And now onto the giveaway!

You have TanOrganic to thank for this, so please do show them love in the comments if you sign up because they have been extremely generous and sent me both a Full Sized bottle of TanOrganic Sunless Spray Tanner valued at $40 USD complete with a Self Tanning Mitt valued at $10 USD!

If you’re craving that Summer glow and you want a safer way to get that look, definitely sign up for your chance to win!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER For Your Chance to Win Your Own Tan Organic Spray Tanner and Tanning Mitt!

What do you think of Sunless spray tanners?

What’s your favorite tanning product?

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the samples that were sent to me from TanOrganic for review and giveaway purposes. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.


Quick Tip for Those Using Natural Sunscreens!

I have been loving this sunscreen from Vive Sana (see review for it – here!), but I actually have a special way of applying my natural sunscreens which I thought that maybe not a lot of people thought about and which I think makes using natural sunscreens a hell of a lot easier than straight out of the bottle. Though, if you can manage it and the consistency doesn’t bother you, then that’s cool too.

You see, a big issue a lot of people have with using natural sunscreens is that they often times are extremely thick, leave a white cast, and can be really difficult to spread on the skin so it’s no wonder that many avoid using them.

That being said, using a natural sunscreen is worth it in the long run to avoid unnecessary chemicals, pesticides and preservatives from causing bodily harm so what I do to counter balance the aforementioned problems with using natural sunscreens is I like to mix them with a nickel size amount of serum or natural vegetable oil to help them spread more evenly on the skin, dim the white cast and even last me longer.

Many people don’t know that there are natural vegetable oils that actually offer natural SPF protection. That’s not to say you should replace SPF with a vegetable oil because the protection of natural vegetable oils is too low to offer sufficient protection in such a hot climate, but it certainly does help and works well for spreading my sunscreen out!

Here are some favorites that I like to use either alone or sometimes mixed together:

  • Olive Oil (lower than SPF 4)
  • Jojoba Oil SPF 4
  • Macadamia Oil SPF 6
  • Soybean Oil SPF 10
  • Wheatgerm Oil SPF 15 – 20
  • Red Raspberry Seed Oil SPF 28 – 50
  • Carrot Seed Oil (Essential Oil – this must be mixed with a carrier oil such as soybean or olive – DO NOT USE UNDILUTED!) SPF 38 – 40

I hope these tips help you in your quest to an all natural lifestyle!

Natural Sunscreen That Protects and Improves Your Skin While You Wear It!

I’ve been searching for the perfect natural sunscreen for ages and it’s not as easy as it may seem. Companies boast a “natural” formula that’s usually anything but or it’s natural yet gives me a horrible white cast and a greasy residue of a face when applied. I’m so happy to report I finally found one that ticks off all the right boxes in all the right places!

Vive Sana Solar to Polar Ultra SPF40 Sunscreen is everything I ever I wanted in a natural sunscreen and more:

  • 70% Certified Organic, 100% Natural Ingredients
  • Broad spectrum mineral-based UVA/UVB Protection
  • Phthalate-Free, Paraben-Free, PABA-free, Petroleum-free
  • Sustainable US packaging
  • Healing, Hydrating and Gentle Ingredients that Benefit the Skin

Included in this formula are also a host of natural sun and free radical fighters such as Green Tea and Raspberry seed as well as other more skin calming ingredients like chamomile and oat to soothe the skin. Aside from that, beneficial vegetable oils such as apricot, safflower, jojoba, avocado and olive all work to condition, soften and hydrate the skin and, of course, percentages of 8.5% titanium dioxide and 3.5% zinc oxide help shield the skin from UV damage. Also, it does not include water in the formula so this will last a lot longer for you and your family and is more concentrated than cheaper mainstream sunscreens that are made with water as the main base ingredient.

What I love about this sunscreen is not just that it’s all natural, though that certainly is a huge plus, but I love that it is pretty much skincare built into a high SPF sunscreen. One thing I will say about this that is kind of annoying is the fact that the formula is really thick and it comes in a tube with a small little hole to get the product from, but it’s so thick the product is a pain to squeeze out. Also, it’s pretty thick so I like mixing it with my Alpha-H Liquid Gold Perfecting Daywear, which I use as a primer, in the morning to give it a bit more slip and it spreads super easily that way and leaves no white cast on my face as so many other natural sunscreens have in the past. Also, there’s none of that typical chemical type sunscreen scent which I find repulsive; in fact, there’s hardly any scent at all. I also received a small sample of the Solar to Polar Baby SPF42 Sunscreen which I kept in my purse for re-applying throughout the day and it was actually much smoother to apply than the Ultra, but other than that, they are basically the same.

I highly recommend Vive Sana sunscreens because they are natural, green, and potent for sun protection from UVA and UVB rays. The fact that they include natural ingredients to help protect your skin as well as other skin beneficial ingredients makes this sunscreen that much more awesome!

Also, Storybook Apothecary readers get a special discount if they purchase anything from Vive Sana’s website within the next 2 weeks and use Coupon Code – Storybook20; they will receive a whopping 20% off their order so hurry on down and pick yours up at this great low price!

Check out the Solar to Polar Ultra – here!

Check out the Solar to Polar for Babies – here!

How do you feel about natural sunscreens?

Do you prefer natural or chemical sunscreens to protect your skin from harmful UV damage?

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the samples that were sent to me from Vive Sana for review. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

Get A Gorgeous Glow with Rouge Bunny Rouge!

If you’re unfamiliar, Rouge Bunny Rouge is a cult cosmetic brand that seeks to embody Victorian fantasy and chic aesthetics. They carry a diverse range of products including blushes, tinted moisturizers, powders, eye shadows and liners, lipsticks and more!

As luck would have it, I was recently lucky enough to be sent some amazing Rouge Bunny Rouge samples from the very lovely ladies over at BeautyHabit.com and I was able to test out a few different items. Here are a few of my favorites from the lot!

Bronzing Glow Liquid; $78 USD

This liquid bronzer was one of my favorites from Rouge Bunny Rouge. It has a nice subtle sheen to it that adds a nice bronze-golden shimmer to your overall makeup look, but they do it in such a way that it doesn’t look unnaturally orange or glittery like many other bronzers.

I really enjoyed wearing this one quite a bit! Although I am really pale, this bronzing liquid still gave me a really nice and natural looking glow. I’m not a fan of glitter, but the shimmer in this is really nice. It doesn’t accentuate flaws or wrinkles and instead draws attention to the high points on your face. I put a big on the tops of my cheek bones, my brow bones right under my brows and on the inner corners of my eyes to give off a very subtle lit-from-within look, but this can be applied anywhere from your face to your neck, decollete, and the rest of your body including arms and legs. I highly recommend this one. Although it is pretty expensive, it looks really natural over liquid makeup or by itself and includes hyaluronic acid in the formula so it’s hydrating and didn’t break me out at all. A word of caution though, I tried once to wear it over powder foundation with not too pleasant results. It ended up making my foundation rub off in places and look cakey in others so stick with liquid foundation or no makeup when using this for the best results.

You can find this bronzing liquid on BeautyHabit – here!

Cheeks in Bloom Blush Wand in Titian; $34

I also received a small sample of this blush wand and was a bit disappointed. Not in the actual product, but the sample itself was so small it was really hard to try this sample and see the full effects of it.

   All I can say is the color is super creamy and really pretty for any skin tone, include pale to darker, more tan skin, but that’s about it. The sample ran out before I could really evaluate it much, unfortunately, but it is pretty averagely priced for a blush wand and may be worth a try if you prefer a more creamy to matte look as opposed to the many shimmer cheek products on the market.

Check it out on BeautyHabit – here!

Tinted Moisturizer in Adansonia; $52

I actually got a full size of this tinted moisturizer so I was able to test this one out and experiment with it a bit more than the others.

Although the packaging is smaller than I thought it would be, I really love this as a tinted moisturizer and the slim packaging design fit really well into my makeup bag.

This tinted moisturizer has way more coverage than most tinted moisturizers that I have tried and looks really smooth going on.

It works really well with the bronzing liquid to nice effect and has a decent coverage for days I don’t feel like wearing full coverage makeup.

I actually think you could layer it to give up to medium coverage, to be honest, because it is very pigmented so even though it seems like you’re getting very little, a little does seem to go a long way.

The thin design is amazing for travel and I was able to pack it away in my weekend bag this past week really easily.

I highly recommend this tinted moisturizer to anyone who wants something light that still has pretty decent coverage as opposed to the many watered down versions that seem to be flooding the beauty market this summer.

Check it out on BeautyHabit – here!

Lastly, I was also able to try out their Highlighting Liquid in Sea of Showers. This item has been raved and raved about, but I just can’t get into it. It works okay as a highlighter for the evening, but I might like it’s luminescent qualities better in the winter. Right now, in the midst of summer heat, it just makes me look like a super pale glowing Edward and I’m not really into the whole glittery vampire thing. I think I might like this effect more in the winter, but as it stands, in my honest opinion, it’s not a good product for Summer.

Check it out on BeautyHabit – here!

All in all, I really love Rouge Bunny Rouge cosmetics!

They are so aesthetically beautiful, but they also work really well for the most part!

Not only that, but the packaging is very practical for traveling and fits easily into makeup pouches when you’re on the go.

These products, with the exception of the highlighting liquid, all work really well for Summer beauty looks, especially if you’re trying to go for subtle golden glow looks without having to stick your face in a tub full of glitter.

Check out the entire Rouge Bunny Rouge line on BeautyHabit – here!


Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the samples that were sent to me from Beauty Habit for review. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

Should Storybook Apothecary Make a Bronzing Oil? + A Fun Contest!

So, in this post, I am asking for your help!

I have been toying with this idea for awhile and it really started keeping me awake at night ever since I did this post and talked about my obsession with bronzing oils, multi-use oils and body oils such as the ones by Josie Maran and Nuxe.

Should I make and offer a bronzing oil or even a multi-use body oil at Storybook Apothecary?

Or otherwise, I can simply do a DIY post on it and teach you all how to make your own at home!

And if I should offer one, which of these bottles is prettiest to hold the lovely oil?

Best/Most intriguing/Hilarious / Witty Answer wins a free full size bottle of either the NEW Storybook Apothecary  multi-use oil/body oil/bronzing oil/ whatever or a full size of the DIY version that I decide to make in one of these pretty bottles!

Okay & Go!