It’s been a very exciting weekend for me…on Friday I received a custom blush I had ordered from one of my new favorite Etsy shops: Mother Bear’s Handmade.
Sometimes social media can be overwhelming, boring and annoying, but it can also inspiring, community-oriented and very helpful. I LOVE the PCOS and clean eating communities on Instagram. I so appreciate the beauty communities too – everyone has such a different approach to beauty or cleaner beauty and I think the more we all share, the better! Instagram has brought me so much more joy in the past week or so. I had been following Mother Bear’s Handmade for a few months now and and put it on my long list of products to try. A few weeks ago Angelica of Mother Bear’s Handmade posted the most amazing looking blushes new to her shop.
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Blush! Finally, I'm ready to bring these to my shop and my hope is that women of every complexion will find the perfect color to make them glow! I'd love to hear your thoughts and help you choose the best color for your unique skin tone. I will be slowly listing these in my shop, but DM me if you're ready to buy and I'll create a custom listing for you! $14 for refill pan, $16 in a compact. Thanks! #mineralmakeup #makeupartist #mua #makeup #indiemakeup #indiebeauty #indiebrands #etsy #etsyshop #etsyseller #vegan #veganbeauty #veganlifestyle #nontoxic #naturalbeauty #nontoxicbeauty #naturalbeauties #woc #wocmakeup #newworlddesigners #greenbeauty #greenbeautylover #greenbeautyblogger #subscriptionbox #diversity #makersgonnamake #handmade #multiculturalbeauty #multiculturalbrides #multiculturalgirl
After a few comments on her blush post and then my talc-free eyeshadow journey / sadness about leaving my Urband Decay behind post, I reached out to her on Etsy to explore custom color options. I was originally thinking about custom eyeshadows, and then I remember what I really wanted was a cleaner version of my favorite NARS blush (no not NARS “Orgasm”): NARS Dual Intensity blush in “Fervor”. After a few exchanges and swatch photos…a custom 2-color blush compact was born!
Mother Bear’s Handmade Etsy Shop Vegan Non-Toxic Talc-Free Makeup Review:
It would be impossible for me to be a more satisfied customer! The shadows and blushes on instagram and her Etsy shop looked to be of strong quality and very strong pigmentation: both things I love. I went with my gut and bought a custom blush and 6 eyeshadows all in one week (vegan talc-free eyeshadow review: Yes I’m that obsessed with this Etsy shop).
The customer service experience was fantastic! Angelica answered all of my questions and kept me updated on the custom blush process over the course of a few days. I think we both found it helpful to share pictures and swatches back and forth – the good thing but tricky thing about NARS dual intensity blush in Fervor is that its look can vary depending on lighting and skin tone so I also described when the colors needed to be more coral-y etc.
The creation and shipping was much faster than expected and I was elated to get it in the mail Friday. I’ve been basking in the glow of my new blush all weekend. Her products are paraben free, talc free, vegan, FRAGRANCE FREE, dye free, phthalate free and silicone free.
The packaging is great – a nice, sturdy clear acrylic compact with the two tones split down the middle. I’m a bit hard on my beauty products – I’m going to work very hard not to drop it! I couldn’t believe 1) how beautiful this custom blush was in person 2) how close a match it is 3) how awesomely pigmented the formula was and 4) how much I like it better than the NARS blush that inspired it!
I’ve tried some other small-batch, homemade non-toxic blushes lately – one from a prominent beauty blogger – and I wasn’t impressed. I know sometimes pigmentation and staying power can be sacrificed in the name of cleaner beauty, so I was prepared to be disappointed in staying power. Fortunately, this blush lasted all day!! I applied my makeup as normal, and applied my new custom blush with my favorite blush brush (IT Cosmetics Velvet Luxe Soft Focus Sculpting Brush #315) and then finished my makeup with Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Perfect Skin Set and Refresh spray. It lasted all day! Even through errands and cooking!
Unlike most products I’m trying to replace, my NARS dual intensity Fervor blush doesn’t seem to contain talc or parabens; however I’ve worn it out (and I’m clumsy and dropped it too frequently) and I like to use the cleanest and most effective version of a product I can.
I’m certainly not a scientist, and I’m not obsessing over Think Dirty, EWG Skin Deep database and other sites and apps like I used to, but I’m pretty sure that I can tell by just reading these ingredients there are a few things I don’t like in the NARS blush.
NARS Dual Intensity Blush Fervor Ingredients (according to Sephora.com):
Lighter blush shade: Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Dimethicone, Glycerin, Nylon-12, Zinc Stearate, Squalane, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polysorbate 20, 1,2-Hexanediol, Carrageenan, Xanthan Gum, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Hdi/Trimethylol Hexyllactone Crosspolymer, Silica; May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Iron Oxides (Ci 77491), Iron Oxides (Ci 77492), Iron Oxides (Ci 77499), Red 30 Lake (Ci 73360), Red 7 Lake (Ci 15850)
Darker Blush Shade: Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Nylon-12, Squalane, Zinc Stearate, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Polysorbate 20, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Carrageenan, Xanthan Gum, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Tin Oxide, Hdi/Trimethylol Hexyllactone Crosspolymer, Silica; May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Iron Oxides (Ci 77491), Iron Oxides (Ci 77492), Iron Oxides (Ci 77499), Red 30 Lake (Ci 73360), Red 7 Lake (Ci 15850).
Dimethicone: a silicone. I still use quite a few products with silicons. I’m trying to be more mindful of them but I don’t think they bother me yet.
Nylon-12: This doesn’t sound good. Everyone seems to generally agree this is ok. I’m just used to seeing Nylon material in heavy duty bags etc – I don’t think I want it in my skin care.
Overall, there are just a LOT of chemical-ly ingredients. If a better-priced, excellent quality, cleaner and fewer ingredient alternative exists, why wouldn’t you go for the alternative? That’s my philosophy. But of course I’m not very NARS loyal – it’s easy for me to switch. Lots of their products I’ve tried have been great (in terms of pigmentation), but some have just been OK.
Mother Bear’s Handmade Etsy Shop Vegan Blush Ingredients
- Sericite Mica – untreated mica commonly found in mineral makeup
- Boron Nitride
- Magnesium Stearate – magnesium powder
- Magnesium Myristrate – powdered fatty acid
- Zinc Stearate – zinc soap or salt of fatty acid
- Carnauba Wax – wax from a palm plant; good substitute for beeswax
- Kaolin Clay – fine absorbant white clay
- May contain
- Iron Oxide – pigment
- Titanium Dioxide
- Tin Dioxide
- Chromium Oxide – pigment
- Manganese Violet – pigment
- Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride – mixture of glycerin and coconut oil componant
- Jojoba Oil
If you’re even thinking of trying Angelica’s vegan blushes and eyeshadows….do it! Custom or not her shades are fabulous. Stay tuned for my eyeshadow review!